Songs of Travellers in the Night
Sorry for how long it's taking me to roll these chapters out. I'm afraid other stories are taking priority.
Jeff walked into his quarters, shrugging off his dress uniform. Catching his link on reflex he winced. 'You have one message waiting.' his terminal bleeped.
Pulling the jacket back on he activated the screen. 'Senator Hidoshi, what can I do for you?' Jeff didn't even have to look, it had been that sort of day.
'Commander Sinclair I have been told that Babylon 5 has been visited by a man calming to be a humanoid alien. Several stories and rumours have been heard about this Man. These have caused us great concern.'
'As far as we have been able to tell he is not dangerous, at least to the station. He calls himself the Doctor. I wouldn't say we've had no problems with him so far but...'
The senator interrupted. 'Commander, his Doctor is known to us and has been present at several major disasters of Earthforce. We are concerned that the same may happen there.'
'I've not heard any of this? Why wasn't I briefed.'
'It has been designated a need to know priority and quite frankly Commander, you did not have the rank needed to know.'
The Commander of the most important diplomatic station in the galaxy. Overall authority throughout the sector and his own government withheld information from him. Hell of a job. 'I understand Senator. Unfortunately the Vorlons have vouched for him and extended diplomatic immunity. As have the Minbari, the Narn, half the league of non alined worlds and myself due to the fact I was not informed.'
'Commander, you are to retract that immunity immediately. There are some very determined people on Earth, they want him, anyone connected to him and any equipment he has. That includes his ship. They are to be detained...'
'Senator I am not going to detain a man with diplomatic immunity from every civilised world. Who has given these orders. Who wants this man so badly that they are willing to brake every civilised law in the galaxy?'
'Who is not important Commander. Only that you do as you are told.' Hidoshi jumped up. 'They don't care how you do it, this is not my order commander. It has come from channels, even beyond Earthforce. The only reason I am relaying it is not to arouse suspicion.'
'Senator, you have no direct authority over me. In fact outside of earthforce no one has direct authority over me. A presidential order, and that alone, is the only way a civilian can give me orders. You know this.' Jeff was beyond livid. He was a hop skip and a jump away from getting in a Starfury and riding fire all the way to Earth.
'And I refuse to believe the President would give that order. It would destroy all confidence in us from the other races. So, Senator, what is going on here.' He didn't answer, Jeff couldn't guess why for a moment. Then it hit him, in a fraction of an instant he cut the transmission and then brought up CIC. 'Ivanova put me through to Senator Hidoshi on Earth. Now.'
'Yes Commander.' He could hear the questions in her voice but she did as he asked.
A few moments later the screen switched to almost the same view it had just been on. 'Commander, what can I do for you at this late hour?'
Forcing a smile Jeff replied. 'Nothing serious Senator. A minor security breach on the communications. I had to check up on. I'll let you know if anything comes of it.' Cutting the transmission again Jeff ran out of his quarters and down the hall.
Talking the elevator and a few more corridors Jeff practically kicked down the door to the security office. 'Michael!'
'Jeff? Susan called down, said something might be wrong' Michael was lent back on his chair filling reports.
'Someone with a holo-net and access to the Bab-comm system played a little practical joke on me. The thought it would be funny to impersonate a senator and order me to pack up our guest and deport him to Earth.'
Michael let out a low whistle and let his chair land on all four feet. 'That would require some serious tech behind it. I don't like the sound of this, our guest is proving the warning Delenn and the others gave.' Michael began tapping at his console
'That he brings trouble? I think that the trouble was already here my friend, he just brings it out.'
'Whoever said Babylon 5 was going to be boring.' Another few moments of typing on the computer Michael kicked back again. 'Okay bad news. Whoever did it, Jeff, routed it through about four different scramblers. It's almost impossible to get anywhere.
'Can't you even get a trace?'
'Oh I got that right of, it was a nice touch really. The console ID was Susan's desk in CIC.' The security chief laughed, Jeff could never tell what his friend would find funny.
He wasn't kidding. 'It gets worse Jeff. In old Earth tech it could be called a re-dial. It hopped from console to console before scrambling itself and starting again. It was a pro behind this alright. They could have made that call anywhere from the fusion reactor to a gap in the walls in green sector.'
'What happened to your magic touch Michael?'
'Magic ain't miracle worker. This guy is and he's beginning to get on my nerves.' Michael rubbed his chin. 'I'll keep my eyes open and look into it. You can't just throw this sort of thing up, you need time. To get around my security you need more than that, my bet is he's been here a while. Keeping his head down, preparing for something like this. Well now my little friend you've made your first mistake.' He aimed the last part at his screen before cracking his fingers and getting to work.
Morden ran the purge program. Six random consoles throughout the station would be purged of all memory. He pulled off his gloves and threw them in to his bag. It was along shot but his associates were insistent and not pleased with his lack of progress.
Who was this "Doctor"? What was so frightening about him that even Morden's associates hid? For the first time since meeting them Morden wondered if there was something worse than his masters.
The Doctor put his feet up on the couch. Martha grinned at him and watched as one foot began dancing. It was as if he just couldn't stand, sit or lie still. Some part of him always in motion. 'Is it always like this when your recognised?'
'Yeah. It's why I don't like it, specially round this time.' he wobbled his hand. 'I'm sort of, well, famous by now. In another hundred years I'm a legend and people move on...'
'But right now everyone want's to spend time with you. The Commander had to put a army of guards outside just to keep the gawkers at bay.' she laughed. 'I feel like the wall paper.'
'That's lucky. I really am going to have to reprogram the landing. They did move I can't have missed by that much.'
'So can't we just leave? We've had a meal and you've done your big speech what else is there for us to do?'
The Doctor looked at her for a moment. 'The Wyoldin are still on the station.'
She had completely forgotten about them, it had just been that sort of day. 'What are we doing here trying to get to sleep? We have to stop them!' She panicked
He was on his feet and grabbed her by the shoulders. 'Martha, there is no point in panicking. Okay. We're safe for the time being, everyone's been warned and they are a good distance off still. We can't do much more with out tipping them off.'
Martha sat down. 'How can a whole people get so twisted?' she asked him.
'It wasn't greed or arrogance or anything like that. That's the problem. They think they are doing the right thing. Some of the greatest crimes in the universe can be caused by someone who thinks they are doing the right thing Martha. A doctor curing a disease could cure someone who goes on to become the greatest mass murder in a planets history.'
'So how do you know...?'
'Take the risk, and learn from your mistakes no matter how big. The Wyoldin were a good people, I met them once. They would celebrate a holiday once a month, for one god or another, and live in harmony. Their great senate heard voices from every walk of life. Every view point seen, they did quite well for themselves. Anyone wanting to go to war just had a big argument because the others kept them in check.
'But there was one big joke, more the half the people on the planet couldn't be bothered with religion or politics and just got on with living.
'The Wyoldin are the only known race to naturally have a double iris. Giving them only one eye. The other eye socket is an evolutionary throwback, so it fell into legend that this great warrior had two eyes.'
'And they worshipped him?'
'This was a world that worshipped a fungal mushroom, someone said it grew between the toes of one of their gods, never mind. The point is he was a patron saint of the sciences so when a child was born with a mutation...'
'Two eyes. The scientists took it as a sign from on high.'
'Exactly. I never found out what happened after that, but I can guess.' So could Martha. Someone had a great idea for change an went out to fix the universe. Then she remembered what stared the conversation.
'These Wyoldin guys, they still think they are doing the right thing?' she gasped
The Doctor shrugged. 'Possibly, they never were destructive by nature. They could be angry or violent but they had no concept of mass murder. The question is can I convince them that's what they are doing.' The Doctor sat down again. 'If I've read the Commander right he's a man that know when to use force. I don't want to kill them Martha, just stop them.' With that he lent back and closed his eyes.
'How are you going to do that? she asked. 'Doctor?' he was already asleep.
The next morning didn't help much. Martha had spent most of the night tossing and turning. Trying to figure out a way to stop a people who thought they were ding the right thing. She was actually surprised when the Doctor knocked on the inside of the sliding door waking her up.
'You coming?' he asked pulling his coat on.
'Coming?' She asked, blinking the sand from her eyes.
The Doctor blinked back, pulling on his lapels until his coat settled. 'Breakfast.' he said simply.
'Oh.' Coming out of the bedroom she saw their guard sitting at the little table in the room. He stood nodded at both of them and opened the door. Martha liked them, strange but the single pivot at the top helped keep the alien feel to the place.
Just when you forgot you were in outer space something would remind her that this whole city in space was man made. Catching the curve of the cylinder, seeing an honest to goodness alien. She would never get tired of it. Especially not with it all out there to see thanks to the Doctor.
Strangely breakfast wasn't the exotic dinner she thought it would be. It was all simple earth food. In a sort of general mess room. A quick look around told her that was exactly where they were. The Doctor just grinned and grabbed two slices of toast.
She did the same but spread butter and a little jam on them. Well it looked like butter but it was probably some sort of long life "almost" butter. The Doctor just ate the plane bread.
The Doctor took one sniff of the tea and screwed his face up. 'Americans can never brew a good cup. Ever noticed that?'
Martha couldn't say that she had, then again she'd never been to America or been a big fan of tea. She grabbed a coffee and the two of them found a table and sat down. Still under guard. Looking around most of the mess hall had stopped taking and were looking at them. 'This is really uncomfortable.' she said before taking a bite.
'Yep, that's why I travel incognito. ohh nice word. In-cog-neet-oh. Just gotta use that one more often.' He mouthed the word again.
'Do you just think of words to use later in casual conversation?'
'Indeed I do.' He beamed a ten thousand megawatt smile at her.
'Some people could call you crazy you know'
'What is insanity but a different way of looking at the universe. You shouldn't listen to sanity Martha, the universe is just too big for it.' he took a bite of his own toast. 'Speaking of what do you think of our friends out there?'
'You think they're insane? she asked, uncomfortably shocked at the idea knowing what they could do.
'No.' He frowned for a long moment. 'Innocent is a better word but childish fits better.'
'Childish?' she half screeched.
Commander Sinclair came up next to them with a tray full of food. 'Who are childish?'
'The Wyoldin.' The Doctor said absently as the Commander sat down. 'It's sort of a shame really. They really think they are doing the right thing, helping people reach heaven. They don't know any better.
'There's no malice in these people It's just their religion that's misplaced.'
The Commander nodded calmly. 'Earth has had it's own fair share of religious problems. Many times it is a case of a religious leader using his power and position to twist the teachings. Pope Urban the second and those that followed him no matter the religion.'
'Who?' Martha asked
'Urban the second, the man who started the first crusade. Really he just used a loop hole in religious dogma to kick start a war that drew attention away from all sorts of problems back home.' The Doctor explained. 'Leaders of all sorts been using that trick longer than there's been a human race.'
'And they thought they were doing the right thing too.' The Commander added. 'So you suggest we talk with their leaders.'
'Since when did religious zealots listen to reason?' The Doctor asked back. 'No we need to find a way to stop them. Their ship is easy, you can disable it and the device but what then?'
The Commander looked thoughtful for a moment. 'There are a couple of planets not too far away. A jump capable ship could get them to one of them and we can leave them there.'
'I don't know isn't that like abandoning them. Can't we help in some way?' Martha asked hopefully.
'Help them do what? No that sounds like the best idea. They have been travelling for a long time, they have to have been.'
'Especially if their world would have been destroyed nearly a hundred years ago.' Martha remembered what the Doctor had said on first seeing them.
'That still leaves the three on the station. They could still be a problem, I talked with them remember.' the Commander said. 'Devout is one way to describe them. Fanatical is another.'
'I can talk to them.' The Doctor mused around his toast. 'They might not listen but It's worth a try. I don't want them dead but if there is no other option...'
'Agreed Doctor.' They sat in silence for a moment eating their breakfast. 'One other thing Doctor, I think someone is after you.' the commander noted absently
'I got an interesting Bab-comm message last night. Someone posing as an Earth Alliance senator hacked into the station's communication network and tried to get me to had you over to what were probably their agents or operatives, or whatever. You wouldn't happen to know why. Mr Garibaldi isn't happy about it.'
Martha wasn't fooled for a moment, he was very concerned about this guy. The doctor wasn't he just folded his arms and lent back on his chair 'Ohh I'm sure whoever they were they didn't mean any harm.' The Doctor looked away and across the mess hall. Something flicked in his gaze, something mischievous and dangerous at the same time. 'I'll have a word with him about it later.'
Martha followed where the Doctor was looking, it was the main entrance/exit but no one was there.
Morden ran. He saw him, he had been so sure that the Doctor wouldn't see him. He had borrowed the device just in case and even then only poked his head out for a short while.
Even with the Black-Light camouflage active the Alien had seen him. Who was he, how could he do that? With terrible certainty Morden realised it wasn't just his associates that were scared of the Doctor.
End Chapter 5