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Scene: Babylon 5, The Movies, "In the Beginning"
Fanfiction Story Title: Oasis on the Road to Babylon, Part 1
"The Lone Traveler: Young man who tried to change the past and save those he loved… plan failed and became the Lone Traveler, wandering through time and reality, making a difference wherever he went… very powerful… defeated a powerful Dark wizard styling himself a Lord… swept along the path he walked by a spectacular aura of blue light."
'Legends & Myths of the Wizarding World' by Gertrude Yolanda
FF St ID 2673584 – Chap 9 – The Professional Modified FF St ID – Chap 58 - Dunuelos
(The Initial Dialogue was stolen – STOLEN – from Grand Admiral Harmon (FF Story ID 7833733). It was pretty close to canon in the Babylon 5 Universe – until a blue light. The Italics indicate the stolen text even if I reordered it a bit.)
"Delenn," a man said, and before her she saw the massive presence of Dukhat. He dwarfed her by at least two feet.
"Master," she said, bowing her head, "I came as instructed."
"Come now," he said impatiently, "lift up your eyes."
"It's forbidden," she said horrified.
"I won't have acolytes of mine walking around with their eyes always down," he said, "You'll always be running into things."
She didn't know if she should laugh at his joke or be mortified that a man of his position would joke around like that. So, instead, she looked up at him and nodded. A warm smile played across his face.
"So Delenn," he said, putting a hand on her shoulder, again against the protocols, and led her gently towards the group in grey. All shrouded in grey cloaks. No faces to be seen, standing in a circle.
"Tell me Delenn," he said, "What do you know of these Humans?"
"They are a very young race," she shrugged, "They have advanced though considerably in their time though. I suggest caution. They might not know what to expect of us."
"My thoughts exactly," he smiled.
Delenn walked into the observation room, and saw the massive display of the system. Five ships could be seen. Three were of a sleek rectangular design. The other two were larger, looking like massive blocks thrown together, with the mid sections rotating. She had only seen such things in historical archives. These people didn't seem all that advanced if they had rotating sections.
"Gunports opened sir," a scan officer reported.
"Who gave that order?" Dukhat shouted.
Captain Dervelen, captain of the ship, turned to him with raised eyebrow.
"I did sir," he replied, "It's a sign of respect to show our weapons to them. Show we aren't hiding anything."
"Captain," the First Officer shouted across the command bridge, "We got an unidentified ship in our sector."
Captain Michael Jankowski looked up from the console he had been bent over, looking over at his XO who was standing next to the scanning station.
"Unidentified?" he repeated, walking over to them, "Is it showing any hostile intentions?"
"Unclear sir," he replied, "Our scanners are having a hard time pinpointing them sir."
"Send it on to Battlegroup-Commander Chafin."
Jankowski looked sharply over at him. "Are they charging?" he asked.
"Can't tell sir," he shook his head, "Their scanning us and it's overpowering our systems."
"I'll be hanged for letting a bunch of upright aliens shut down our systems," Jankoswki growled, "Open fire on that ship!"
"Sir," his first officer said, turning to him, "Would not a warning shot be enough?"
"We don't know if they are powering up a super-laser!" Jankoswki barked, "Gunnery Sergeant: Fire!"
Suddenly in the center of the command deck of the Minbari vessel, a blue light pulsed. All of the command deck was frozen, thinking this was a new weapon. The warriors on guard patrol were so shocked that they hadn't even raised their PPG rifles.
Out of the blue light, a figure appeared. The being – obviously not Minbari or of any race that any knew about regardless of how close they were in appearance – took note of the large energy balls coming toward the viewscreens.
The figure took a stick of some strange material and said a word. Suddenly, a beam shot out – through the bulkhead – and formed a large circle made of light right in front of the ship. The blue energy pulses hit the large circle – and bounced off at odd angles.
Several more pulses come forward, but all hit the large circle. Finally there was a lull in the shots. The figure shot forth another beam – which coalesced into the image of a bright light shaped like an animal of some sort. The figure said a few words and the animal made of light shot out of the bulkhead, appearing to run through space before hitting the ship that had fired and disappearing. The Minbari looked at the figure in awe. It could only be a first one at full power!
Jankowski watched as the ship he had just ordered his people to fire upon projected a large yellow disc. The shots hit the disk and caromed off in random directions. One of the reflected shots moved very close to another ship from his own group – the one holding Battlegroup-Commander Chafin. Fearful about getting in trouble for getting his commander killed, he reluctantly gave an order.
"Cease fire! Cease fire!" The gunners stopped sending shots. "What the hell is that?"
Before he could get an answer, one of the people on a scanner station said, "There is an odd light coming out from the hull of the ship. It's not from a gunport!" The man paused as though unable to continue.
Jankowski yelled, "Well, speak up man! Is it an attack?"
The man nervously relied, "It looks like a running stag made of light."
"What!? Someone else check that!"
Another person looked at the readings. Many systems were being interfered with but the scanner still somewhat functioned. "Sir! The ensign is correct! It looks like a stag made of light."
The stag was coming very close to the ship. If it was a shot …. "BRACE FOR IMPACT!" he yelled out.
The light hit the ship – and disappeared. Suddenly, it phased right onto the command deck. All of the people on the deck were in shock. Before Jankowski could say anything, the stag reared up and settled down, standing proudly among them. It looked around and saw the commander in his command deck. The people around were flummoxed by the peaceful feeling the stag generated.
A voice came out of the stag – in an EARTH accent! It sounded British.
"Hey, Mate, could you lot stop sending potshots? I don't want to get killed over here! Was there no other choice than to blow up the opposition?"
The Minbari looked at the figure. Finally, Dukhat spoke: "Nobody move! And close the damn gunports and stop scanning!"
The warriors at the controls moved to comply. The figure looked at Dukhat confused, and then sent tapped his own throat and ears with the stick he was holding while saying some words. He then sent a light at Dukhat which didn't do anything apparently.
Dukhat, a little shocked, asked, "Who are you?"
The figure looked around and replied, "Harry Potter. Who are you?"
Commander Jankowski shocked beyond belief said, "Send a message with a brief description to the Battlegroup-Commander! Ask for directions!"
He wasn't about to get himself in trouble for making decisions when those decisions could get him reprimanded. Of course, he was already in hot water – he just didn't know it yet.
The communications officer sent the message. The ensign at the scanner station yelled out, "Sir! The ship has stopped sending the signal jamming our equipment and it has closed its gunports!"
Jankowski sat back, looking around and toward the image on the screen. He wasn't certain what to do.
Dukhat replied to the man, "I am Dukhat, Leader of the Grey Council, Councilors to the Minbari Federation. What species are you?"
The warriors looked at their leader a bit surprised – although you would have to be Minbari to notice it. The figure in front of them replied, "Human, Wizard, and Master of Death."
Dukhat repeated that in his own language. These humans were more interesting than even he had imagined. The warriors, upon hearing the moniker "Master of Death," tensed a bit. The human hadn't made any moved and had indeed saved their ship. But that title indicated someone well-versed in war. And war was the province of the Warrior Caste.
The human, upon hearing the language from the rest, waited for his translation charm to kick in. It had to have some basis to work on.
Finally, he had picked up enough of the language that the warriors were speaking and said in Vik (the Dark Language of the Warrior Caste), "Who the hell is that firing on your ship?"
Dukhat, who could speak all Minbari dialects fluently, replied, "We don't know. However," and here he looked at the captain, "we might have provoked them by approaching with our gunports open."
The human nodded. "Well, knowing my own people, if someone comes at you with a weapon drawn, it's shoot first and ask questions later. Better to be safe than sorry."
Dukhat asked, "How do your people approach someone you don't know or to whom you don't speak the language?"
Harry thought about it. "It's better to approach with hands visibly open and empty and wait for them to respond in kind. My people know that anyone can actually kill you. Some of the worst are the ones that look weak. If someone comes on with a weapon – they're a threat. It might also mean, I am better than you and I can attack you at any time. We don't respond well to threats – or things that we don't know about if it might be dangerous. An open hand means 'I do not wish to attack you.' Been that way with our people for over 40,000 years – since we lived in caves."
Dukhat looked at the Minbari captain with a vicious smirk as he replied to Harry, "A lesson on other cultures our people will happy to learn." He didn't add the words that his message implied to the other Minbari, "Or else!"
The captain was a bit nervous. The alien idea that this "Master of Death" espoused was so against his Warrior Caste training that it showed these humans as alien and different. His training had not been sufficient for dealing with someone so different in approach.
Dukhat finally asked, "How did you appear on this ship?"
Harry looked around and answered, "Through a mistake I made long ago." Dukhat looked interested. "How about we sort out who those people are and then I can tell you about it?"
Dukhat agreed. He ordered the view of the enemy ship expanded. Harry started when he saw the name of the ship. "Wait! Those are human names!"
The Warriors looked at Harry with a bit of suspicion. Understandable considering the ship just fired upon them. The only reason they were undamaged was because of Harry's own actions.
Harry mused out loud, "I wonder what year it is back on Earth? 'Cause I know my time doesn't have big ships in space."
Dukhat, Delenn, and the others who heard him were visibly shocked at that statement.
"Can you call them? I speak the language and can ask them why they fired."
Dukhat ordered the Warrior at communications to open a channel for the Human among them. The Warrior did so and nodded at Harry.
The Communications Officer yelled out, "A message coming from the ship! It's in English!"
Jankowski ordered it played out loud.
A voice with a British accent, the same voice that had come out of the light-stag, was asking, "Is there a reason why you people were firing on this ship? Cause it's not quite Cricket to just be sending potshots off at random strangers."
The people who were on the Bridge were shocked at the obvious Human reference.
The Battlegroup-Commander's voice piped through on the same channel. "I was just about to find that out. One of my commanders might have decided that whatever the ship you are on sent out it was an attack as it interfered with many of our systems. Also, the gunports were open. We were sending messages asking it to stop, but no one replied."
There was a pause, and then the voice continued. "The leader over here sends his apologies. His people were scanning. It's also a mark of respect among their warriors to approach showing an open gunport – it's a mark of respect to say that they consider you just as strong as they are. I just explained what Human's consider respectful for strangers. It's a bit of a shock for them."
The Battlegroup-Commander's voice replied, "Well, couldn't you have answered our hails when we were squawking the request to stop the scan?"
The voice paused. "Well, the truth is – I just got here right as your people were firing and these people don't understand the Queen's Own English. I … applied a translation method to get them to understand me. It's a long story. Why don't we all meet on one of the ships and I'll tell you all about it."
The Battlegroup Commander had asked for hour to confer with his other commanders. Harry repeated that to Dukhat. "Well, since the scans messed with their systems and they took a few shots, it might be better to find a neutral place to talk to them. I can translate – as long as the cosmos doesn't move me on from here. It does that on occasion."
Dukhat nodded. That was reasonable. "Can you answer questions about your people? It might save us from making embarrassing mistakes – such as inadvertently making them think we are attacking." He once again gave a vicious look toward Captain Dervelen.
Before Harry could answer, one of the Warriors cried out in alarm. "Satai! The Shag-toth have appeared!"
Dukhat yelled out with urgency, "Where are they?"
The Warrior looked at the panel. "They are – leaving. There were hundreds of their ships but all are turning and disappearing!"
Dukhat looked awed at this. Harry interjected, "Who or what are the Shag-toth?"
Dukhat looked at Harry. "They are a race that attempts to steal the souls at the moment of death. They often come when there is much death – or the death of a great leader. They are much despised by my people."
Harry nodded. "Well, it seems that before I arrived someone here, possibly you, would have died. Since I changed it – they have no reason to stay."
The Minbari were shocked to realize that such was likely the case. Harry was thoughtful for a moment. "You do realize that they likely have different beliefs than you. You don't seem to like them but here they are. Have you ever talked to them?"
Dukhat looked thoughtful – while every other Minbari was scandalized. He asked, "Can you send a message to these people?"
Dukhat nodded in the affirmative. "Tell them The Master of Death has a question for them."
The Warrior looked to Dukhat. Dukhat looked to Harry and then nodded his acceptance.
The Warrior sent the message out in Interlac. Suddenly one of the ships leaving stopped and turned around. The other ships stopped further off. A message was returned. "What does Death's Master ask of us?"
Harry, being a bit stubborn, decided he wasn't going to avoid riling up the Minbari. "I request a meeting between myself and a member of your race. The Minbari seem to hate you but here you came. I would like to meet with you to learn why there is hate on both sides."
The Warriors and the other Minbari present were outraged that someone would speak to a Shig-toth without being forced to. One protested, "They are an abomination! There can be no talking to them!"
Dukhat motioned to the one who had protested. "Delenn, hear him out."
Harry looked at Delenn. "If you never talk to them, how can you fix the problem? Now, I seem to have saved your collective arses from the idiots across the way. All I'm asking for is the chance to find out what the big problem is – from both sides. Is that too much to ask?"
Delenn visibly wanted to protest, but Dukhat interjected. "It you could find out, it would be a miracle on the proportion of a star being created."
Delenn bowed her head in resignation. "Understanding is not required. Just obedience."
Dukhat was appalled. His student had far to go. He was about to comment, until Harry entered his own opinion. "Where the hell did that tripe come from?" The word "tripe" came across in Minbari as a very rude word for discard-able offal. "If you don't learn, how can you progress? You can't make any progress without understanding. Sure, you can learn how other people did things, but you can't be yourself if you don't take the time to learn. I mean: Who are you? Don't you want to know?"
All the Minbari were startled at the last statement. According to Legend, the Vorlons asked only one question: "Who Are You?" Most could not answer to the satisfaction of the Vorlons. Minbari spent years trying to learn the answer to that question. Were their own practices at fault for stopping them from answering?
Harry noticed the shock and then jogged them out of it by saying, "Can you send the message?"
Dukhat nodded at the Warrior at communications. He was impressed by the Human's response to that traditional Minbari truism. He had tried to break the traditions which stultified the Minbari for centuries. He was teaching his student to think just for that reason. Someone had to take over when he was gone.
Dukhat commented to Harry, "Yours is a very strange people to most Minbari." Harry noticed that Dukhat didn't seem to agree with that.
Harry grinned, "Oh, everyone strange in their own way. You'll never be happy if you don't learn to think for yourself and revel in your own strangeness."
Dukhat smiled in response – although he didn't want to be too obvious to the other Minbari. Such thoughts were so very alien to their culture.
Finally, an answer came from the Soul Hunter ship: "Tell is where and when and we will send a delegate."
Harry thought about it. "Give us a few. We are about to meet with the Humans in a neutral place. When one is named, I can tell you. I will ask that the Minbari and the Humans don't interfere."
Harry waited patiently with Dukhat for the reply from the Battlegroup. Finally, an answer came, "The closest neutral location we found is a Narn colony a few systems over. Is that acceptable?"
Harry looked to Dukhat. He nodded. "Sure, send the address over. How long will it take to get there? Make sure you include time to get someone who can make agreements cause it would be far better to hatchet out an agreement sooner rather than later."
The answer came. "Two weeks. We are sending the coordinates."
The Minbari nodded to say he had received them. "Sounds good. Just as a comment, you people almost killed the leader of the whole Minbari people. You might want to leave the trigger-happy idiot at home so as not to cause a scene."
Jankowski visibly paled when he heard that. He shuddered when he realized that he had nearly gotten them in a war. The Joint Chiefs were not going to be happy with him.
After the Earth group left, Harry asked to send the information to the small ship. It was passed. Finally Dukhat said, "I would request that you join me so that we may learn how to deal with the Humans. It would be better all around if you could."
Harry agreed. "I can do that – but whenever the purpose of my arrival is satisfied, I tend to flash off to the next place. So if I disappear – you will have to handle it on your own. I can't control it."
Dukhat entered his inner sanctum after finally getting their guest into accommodations on the ship. The Vorlons were agitated.
Dukhat described what had happened. Finally he asked, "Have you ever heard of this before?"
The Vorlons turned to each other and back to Dukhat. "Yes."
They then turned toward the place they were staying while on the Minbari ship. Dukhat was a bit frustrated with them – but what could you expect from Vorlons?