Babylon 5: S04E13: Rumors, Bargins and Lies
The command staff arrive for breakfast in the morning to find Sheridan in a deep contemplative and slightly wacky mood. He ignores their greetings and, when they embark on a conversation of their own he interrupts (quite rudely in my opinion) with laughs.
Suddenly he jumps up and walks to their table. He has been wrestling with the problem of getting the non-aligned worlds to agree to have protection from raiders etc. He exclaims that he has a solution and orders Marcus to take three White Stars to a sector of Centauri space and wait there for orders.
As Delenn travels back to her homeworld, Lennier reports that there have been reports of fighting between the casts. Delenn is upset by this and blames herself, “Did I do this, when I broke the Grey Council?“. She has decided that the fighting must stop and has asked for a meeting with her old adversary, Neroon, of the Worrier Caste, onboard her ship.
In Sheridans office, Londo is in a heated discussion with Sheridan trying to find out why he must deny that there are White Stars patrolling the Centauri border after all the trouble Sheridan went to explain that this action was to persuade the League of non-aligned worlds to allow such protection. All Sheridan can reply (with a big smile on his face) is, “Trust me.”
When Neroon arrives on Delenns ship the two parties stare at each other tensely. Delenn points out that the guests are safe and under her protection. There is uneasiness among the Religious Caste at the honour in which Delenn is treating the Worrier Caste. Neroon and Delenn speak alone and come to an agreement, despite their past differences, that it would be wrong for either the Religious Caste OR the Worrier Caste to be the dominant force on Minbar. They agree to trust each other to try to find a solution.
On the Centauri border, Marcus is puzzled by Sheridans command to fire at asteroids. “I see,” he says. “Shoot a bunch of rocks and then leave”. Sheridan insists that Marcus follows orders. Ivanova tried to question Sheridans reasons without success.
Meanwhile, back on Delenns ship, things are getting a bit silly. The Religious Caste are going bananas because they believe that Delenn is about to sell them out and the Worrier Caste attack Neroon, presumably for the same reasons. The Religious Caste come up with this great plan to poison everyone on the ship and become martyrs in order to stop Delenn. A small cask of toxic fuel is placed, with a timer, by an air vent. These guys are nuts!
Actually, they come to their senses when Delenn informs them of her plans. Unfortunately, they believe that it is too late and that they are all about to be poisoned. If I was in their shoes I’d have slit my throat at this point. Fortunately, Lennier had silently been following what had happened and tries to stop the cask from releasing its deadly contents. He almost dies in the attempt but is ultimately successful.
Delenn is shocked and saddened by Lenniers near death and puzzled at what should have caused his illness. He doesn’t let on, to the relief of his fellow Caste members, but points out to them that, in short, he thinks they are a bunch of twits and that he didn’t let on for their sake, but for the sake of Delenn who would have been (understandably) very upset to find that her chief assistants were, after all, a bunch of donkeys.
As Ivanova is about to start her next broadcast of the Voice of the Resistance, Sheridan asks her to casually mention that nothing happened in sector 89x9x12. She looks at him with one of her lovely worried expressions and he retorts by saying that she wouldn’t be lying. After Ivanova mentions this on air, the ambassadors of the non aligned worlds go into a mild fit of aperplexy carefully calculating that 2+2 equals 36,437. They assumed that the three White Stars had, in fact engaged an enemy and that Sheridan was not prepared to discuss this important news with them. They contemplated the reasons for secrecy and decided to summon him to a meeting of the League of Non-Aligned Worlds to answer for his actions.
In the middle of the night, Neroon escapes the Minbari Battleship alone. the news is reported to Delenn by a still painfully sick Lennier. Delenn looks puzzled, everything seemed to be going well. Neroon makes a call to his superior informing him that he has the Religious Casts plans and that Minbar should be theirs within a week.
When Sheridan arrives at the League council meeting they insist that Sheridan supply each of them with the same protection he has given the Centauri. Sheridan tries to get out of such an agreement, but they insist, saying that they will ratify such a request with their respective governments immediately. They agree that if Sheridan patrols the borders of the Non-aligned Worlds then they will agree to support Babylon 5 should there be a need to defend against a greater danger.
Sheridan manages to contain his happiness until he gets into the elevator when he shouts “Yeeess!” Don’t you just love it when a plan comes together.
Ivanova announces that the League of Non-Aligned Worlds has new border patrols. She also reports that there is news of troubles on Minbar adding that she wishes the Minbari well and a speedy resolution of any conflict.
I’d rate this a huge (hug even) 31,459 out of 10. What did you think?
The “Rumors, Bargains and Lies” episode review is © 1999 – 2001 Tony Fawl
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