Ra'Mogh of the Red Spot

Chapter One: War Cruiser

"Are you absolutely certain this is the spot, Vir Cotto?" Captain Ra'Mogh asked, his patience wearing thin. "We have been hanging here in space for several hours, and the minbari transport ship has not shown up. If we do not move on, we will most likely be discovered. The Nu'Ral has been cleverly disguised to look like a centauri trading vessel, but it will not hold up to close inspection."

"Please, let's wait just a while longer, Ra'Mogh," Vir pleaded with the burly Narn. "I promise you, it is worth the wait. The ship is carrying a large number of narn refugees. All we need to do is attach to their hangar bay and the refugees can enter our ship. Then, we will bring them to Babylon 5."

Ra'Mogh peered at the centauri suspiciously. The narn captain wanted to believe this plump, affable male; but he had not been raised to trust centauris, even those who had a proven track record of helping refugees. What if he was simply laying a clever trap for all of them? He did, after all, work for the monstrous Londo Mollari, the dreaded, evil eel of the galaxy. After the Narn Regime had lost the war to their hated enemies, Mollari had promised that any one death of a centauri caused by a rebellious Narn would result in hundreds of executions of narn prisoners, including the "perpetrator's" family. And that would include even small pouchlings, like my two little grandchildren...although they at least have the good fortune of having found refuge on the human space station, Babylon 5.

Ra'Mogh shivered slightly as he thought about the ruthlessness of the centauri butchers. Why was he even thinking of trusting this Vir Cotto person? He knew that his superior, Councilor Ni'Kar, had believed that Cotto was a person of virtue before the war had begun. Now that Narn lay in ruins, however, he doubted whether any centauri could truly be trusted. Vir was working as an envoy to the minbaris at the moment rather than as Mollari's aide, but even a posting on the hallowed world of Minbar did not guarantee that Cotto was necessarily any more full of spiritual wisdom and light than the narns...and Ra'Mogh was honest enough with himself to admit that his own people had become far too bitter and ruthless after the first occupation of Narn had ended, approximately fifty years ago. Even so, he reasoned with himself, we would have refrained from using mass drivers on a civilian population. These notorious asteroid weapons have been outlawed by every civilized world in the quadrant.

Why is Vir helping us? Ra'Mogh wondered. Why would he help his sworn enemies? It made no sense. Nonetheless, he owed it to Councilor Ni'Kar's memory to try to rescue as many narn prisoners as possible—and aligning himself with the most benign centauri ever known to exist in the universe was the only way that he could access those prisoners.

"Look, Ra'Mogh!" Vir cried. "A vessel is coming out of the jump gate. It's them, I'm sure of it. But wait..."

"Schrock!" Ra'Mogh bellowed as he saw what kind of vessel had emerged from the open jump point. There before them was a centauri war cruiser.