...or, the "what happened after Blake" that's sat in my mind since 1986...
BLAKE’S 7 501: "In The Company Of Madmen"
By EWEN CAMPION-CLARKE
1. MODEL SHOT -- SPACE
The foggy blue planet of Gauda Prime hangs in space, alone.
We zoom in on the planet. As we do so, we hear the
distorted, dreamlike sounds of a conversation.
He’s sold us, Avon. All of us. Even
Is this true?
Avon. It’s me. Blake.
2. EXT. GP FORESTS
The voices continue to be heard, strange and unreal as we
move through the woods. It is raining heavily, and mist
wafts between the trees. We move through the forest.
Have you betrayed us? Have
you betrayed me?
Tarrant doesn’t understand!
Well, neither do I, Blake!
I set all this up!!
3. INT. GP TRACKING GALLERY (FLASHBACK)
Black and white to indicate it is a flashback. The dialog is
still distorted and while alarms are clearly going off, we
cannot hear it. To the left stands ROJ BLAKE and ARLEN. In
front of them stands KERR AVON holding a long plasma rifle,
aimed at BLAKE. Behind AVON stands VILA RESTAL, DEL TARRANT,
SOOLIN and DAYNA MELLANBY.
Avon, I was waiting for you --
BLAKE steps forward toward AVON who raises the gun and fires
three times. BLAKE’s reactions are mixed into each other as
if the three shots are happening simultaneously. The effect
ends as, mortally wounded, BLAKE falls forward. He grabs
AVON’s shoulders stay upright, and stares blindly into
AVON’s horrified face.
BLAKE loses his hold and falls to the floor, lying on his
back, staring up at the ceiling, quite dead. Gunfire and
explosions are heard. Just over the cacophony:
AVON’s head snaps up, leaving his daze. We can now hear the
blaring alarms. He looks around and sees black-clad,
helmeted FEDERATION TROOPERS entering the gallery from the
various entrances. As they enter, they raise their guns to
train them onto AVON. He turns, seeing more and more
TROOPERS arrive, and sees all the others are lying lifeless
on the floor, all apparently dead. The TROOPERS are closing
in around him, guns aimed at his head. AVON turns a complete
circle. He is completely surrounded.
As the TROOPERS cautiously move even closer, AVON looks down
at BLAKE’s body. BLAKE stares sightlessly up at him. AVON
places his feet on either side of the corpse, standing over
him almost protectively. AVON finally lifts his head up once
more. The TROOPERS are a wall around him.
Suddenly, the alarm cuts out, leaving only the gentle whir
of the tracking systems in the room. AVON casually raises
his rifle. The TROOPERS tense. AVON, aiming his rifle at
head height, braces himself for the shot. An eerie smile
spreads across his face, then hardens into a grimace.
4. INT. GP CELL
Color and normal sound. We see a close up of AVON’s
impassive face as we hear a roar of different gunfires that
suddenly ends, leaving silence. He closes his eyes.
You still haven’t tried to escape.
He opens his eyes again. We see AVON is lying on a bunk in a
square room, staring up at the ceiling. The bunk is the only
furniture, but the decor shows it is part of the GP base. On
the other side of room, KORRELL leans in the open doorway.
She is relaxed and calm, arms folded.
It’s been seven days. The door is
open and I am unarmed. Most people
would at least attempted to escape
AVON doesn’t look at her as he speaks.
The trap is too obvious.
To run, you need somewhere to go.
True. And you don’t seem to have
that possibility. At present.
AVON frowns slightly at this, but does not take his eyes
from the ceiling.
You have all the cards. You make
KORELL smiles at this.
All right. Let’s talk about you.
You have had no thoughts of escape
for the past seven days. Why?
Because you are looking inwards.
For the second time in your life,
only the second time ever, you have
too much to think about.
Is that a diagnosis?
No. Nor was it a question. You have
been living on a knife edge, just
avoiding death. You could stand the
constant pressure, but could you
stand the memories when they come
flooding back? The memories of the
people you trusted, perhaps?
AVON still does not look at her.
The people you trusted, the only
people you trusted in your entire
life. They betrayed you. Anna
Grant, for instance? You nearly
died for her as I understand it.
And she was an agent of Servalan.
Or maybe she was an agent for
someone else? After all, no one
knows. All we know is what she
wasn’t... she wasn’t loyal, she
wasn’t truthful, she wasn’t worthy
of your love. And she wasn’t dead.
She is now.
And so is Blake. You admired him.
AVON rolls his eyes in vague amusement.
You pretended to despise him, but
you must have agreed with him and
his purpose. You wouldn’t have
ended up on this planet for any
other reason. Would you?
Blake was a fool.
But he was a fool that you knew. A
fool you thought you could predict.
You thought wrong. In the end, you
couldn’t be sure.
A long pause.
Did Blake betray you?
Is that a question?
This time? Yes. A real question.
It’s an interesting theory.
Am I right?
It’s just a story.
A true story?
More or less.
AVON levers himself upright, turning to sit on his bunk,
looking straight at KORELL for the first time.
What do you want, Korell?
There’s no hurry. We’ll talk
AVON’s voice holds a hint of desperation.
I’d like to tell you now.
KORELL studies him for a moment.
She turns and leaves the cell. The door slides shut
smoothly, blocking the view of the corridor outside. AVON
sits, staring at the door. His expression changes to one of
satisfaction. He lies back down on the bunk.
5. MODEL SHOT -- SPACE
Servalan’s personal space craft is positioned in space.
Another, larger space ship is docked with it.
6. INT. SERVALAN’S SHIP -- FLIGHT DECK
Three MUTOIDS sit at the flight controls in the middle of
the deck. SERVALAN sits at her control console to left of
the flight deck. Before her stands ARLEN, now dressed in the
uniform of a trooper. She stands to attention, helmet under
her arm. A fourth MUTOID stands nearby.
You were on the planet, Commander?
What were your orders there?
To remove the prisoners held in the
compound and return them to Earth.
SERVALAN is slightly surprised at this.
Why Earth? Were these prisoners
ARLEN looks slightly awkward.
For some time, the planet had been
used by enemies of the Federation.
We had them under close
surveillance and had infiltrated
the command structure.
And what form did this command
When Open Planet policy was
introduced, normal Federation laws
were abandoned, leading to a number
of criminals arriving to take
advantage. When the policy was
terminated, law enforcement
operations were set up to round up
and execute those criminals.
So any criminal elements using the
planet as a gathering place would
already be being dealt with?
That is what seemed to be
happening. However, the rebels were
using the cover of one of the
bounty hunter operations to attract
other dissident elements to their
base. They would capture criminals
at large on the planet and, if
suitable, recruit them. They
falsified records so the criminals
would be listed as dead, while
keeping them at large to plan a
And who was it that infiltrated
this underground organization?
I ensured that the dissidents were
unaware the rest of my force was on
the planet. At my command, we
stormed the silo they were using as
a base. All the rebels were to be
rounded up, and those that resisted
were executed on the spot.
SERVALAN does not look impressed.
And who were these... great
outlaws? That senior officers of
the Terran Federation had to rush
half way across the galaxy in order
to have them arrested?
ARLEN looks slightly smug.
The leader of the rebels,
SERVALAN stares at ARLEN for a long moment.
Yes, Commissioner. He was the major
political criminal on the
Federation’s wanted list for...
Don’t tell me about Blake,
Commander. I know more about him
than you were ever told.
A pause. SERVALAN is much calmer now.
Did you actually see him?
Yes, Commissioner. I spent much
time with him undercover. He was
one of the false bounty hunters
that captured me, believing me to
be a suitable ally.
And was Blake taken captive?
Not exactly, Commissioner.
SERVALAN’s voice is like cut glass.
Then what, "exactly", Commander?
Blake was shot repeatedly from very
close range as the troopers
arrived. I supervised
identification of the body. Roj
Blake is a dead man.
He resisted arrest, then?
We didn’t shoot him, Commissioner.
He died before my men even entered
the silo. He was shot by one of his
His name is Kerr Avon,
SERVALAN cannot hide her surprise.
7. INT. GP CELL
AVON lies on the bunk, seemingly asleep. There is a
scuffling noise from the closed door. Instantly, AVON opens
his eyes, wide awake. He sits up. He mutters to himself.
It seems I misjudged you, Korell.
He gets to his feet and crosses to the door, and presses
himself against the wall to the left of it, drawing his arm
up for a karate chop. The door slides open.
A TROOPER stands in the doorway. AVON’s expression shows his
surprise, but he still makes his move. Before the TROOPER
has stepped into the cell, AVON strikes him in the stomach.
Letting out a muffled groan of pain, the TROOPER falls
forward to the floor. AVON crouches down and slips his arm
around the neck of the TROOPER, getting him into a headlock.
AVON glances at the open door and the corridor beyond. No
one else. He tightens his grip on the TROOPER’s neck, as the
TROOPER instinctively tries to pull the arm away. AVON
tightens his grip further, but speaks quietly.
The wrong type of movement on your
part could have serious
The TROOPER stops resisting, intimidated.
It would be helpful if we could
talk. Take off your helmet.
AVON slackens his grip, while still holding onto the
TROOPER, who gently pulls off his helmet to reveal a
familiar face underneath - albeit with a stubbly beard and a
look of terror in the eyes.
Since you know who he is, you might
want to let him go.
AVON smiles and does so. We see a SECOND TROOPER standing in
the doorway, holding a sidearm aimed at AVON. VILA scrambles
away from AVON as far as he can.
Keeping AVON covered, SOOLIN takes off the helmet.
It’s bad manners to threaten the
lives of those who’ve just freed
you from a Federation cell.
It was rather hard to tell who you
were through those uniforms.
Although I should have recognized
VILA glares at AVON, annoyed.
Yes! You should have!
You thought he was the usual
He doesn’t quite have that
aggressive authority which is their
hallmark. As for you...
AVON starts to rise.
I’m not the one with a gun.
You’ve just demonstrated that
doesn’t count for much.
You also demonstrated how you’ve
turned into a homicidal maniac with
a tendency to kill people on your
I have nothing to gain from harming
either of you.
Very comforting. We rather got the
impression you wanted us all dead.
There are a number of locks between
here and the outside world. Vila
can open them quicker than the
average guard. And getting past the
guards is easier with a gunfighter
- especially the best there is.
Well, you don’t need to worry about
the locks between here and the
outside world, they’re all done.
What about the guards?
We won’t be bumping into any.
You killed them all I suppose?
I doubt it was Vila who did it.
I didn’t have to kill anyone. This
place is deserted.
There’s no one in this silo, except
AVON is troubled. He doesn’t know how to react.
How did you scare them off, Avon?
Threaten to give a lecture to the
assembled masses on the subject of
If I’d wanted them to leave, I
would have discussed yours for
maximum effect. Where are Dayna and
Not here. We’ve checked all the
Do you know if they’re still alive?
You mean you actually care? It
looked to me like you wanted us all
Dead or alive, they’re nowhere in
this silo. At least not any more.
Unsurprising. It’s been a week.
A week since you unleashed
universal mayhem. And in all that
time there hasn’t been a single
ship landing or taking off.
AVON gets to his feet.
What were you doing out there in
the meantime? Counting trees? Or
drinking every drop of adrenaline
and soma within a radius of twenty
VILA stands as well.
And what the hell have you been
doing for the last seven days,
Avon? Playing patience?
I’ve been held prisoner.
By whom? There’s no people here,
Avon. No guards, no Federation, no
What about Korell?
And who might Korell be?
A civilian woman with long hair.
She was here, in this cell, one
SOOLIN and VILA exchange a glance.
Well. We haven’t seen her. Maybe
you’ve gone mad, Avon? Again, I
Or maybe she was a ghost?
AVON turns to look sharply at SOOLIN.
Or maybe you are.
SOOLIN smiles knowingly at him.
8. INT. SERVALAN’S SHIP -- FLIGHT DECK
As before. ARLEN stands before SERVALAN.
Commander Arlen, if your takeover
of Blake’s silo was such an
"unqualified success" why didn’t
you complete the roundup and
identification of the bodies
according to your orders?
It was at that point that we were
I see. By whom were you attacked?
The fighting had only just stopped
when there was a gas attack from
outside the compound. It was Aoline
97 which can maim instantly, and as
a standard precaution...
You evacuated the silo right away?
Commissioner Sleer, by retreating
we were able to avoid the attackers
without further loss of men.
SERVALAN rises to her feet. ARLEN stays at attention, facing
the console even as SERVALAN moves from behind.
You lost only five of your troopers
in the entire operation, Commander.
And because you didn’t lose a
sixth, that somehow is supposed to
justify you abandoning your
operation without even seeing your
Commissioner, the security systems
inside the silo clearly showed it
was under attack from an
Of course they did, you fool, you
were the overwhelming force!
The alarms were deactivated once we
had control and were inside.
And did you ever wonder who these
mysterious attackers might be?
I assumed they were more rebels,
summoned by Blake to protect the
SERVALAN moves behind ARLEN, who continues staring ahead -
the Comissioner’s voice drips with sarcasm.
Yes, it’s just possible that was
Blake was dead and so were most of
his rebels - and since our primary
orders were to ensure Blake was
And he was eliminated?
SERVALAN returns to her seat.
Then where is his body?
As I reported, Commissioner, we had
to evacuate and there was no
opportunity to return to the
So the body is still presumably on
ARLEN takes a breath to stop her biting back.
So there is no proof? Only your
SERVALAN glares at ARLEN.
You may go, Commander.
ARLEN salutes and walks across the flight deck to the
airlock on the far right. SERVALAN addresses the attending
MUTOID, but doesn’t look at her.
Call up information from Data
Central. Bring me a complete
analysis of the frontier planet
And have it sifted for references
to "Blake", "Avon", "Orac",
"Scorpio" and "teleport".
9. INT. GP CELL
As before. AVON sits on the bunk. VILA in the corner. SOOLIN
in the doorway, still with her gun aimed at AVON. He has
been talking for a while.
For the past six days, the routine
never varied. Twice a day, Korell
would arrive here with food. She
would allow me to exercise up and
down the corridor, then attempt to
Is she pretty?
AVON blinks, distracted at the left-field question.
Oh, well, what a surprise. We get
to starve in a beaten-up freighter
for six days, while Avon here gets
to be interrogated by a beautiful
woman - assuming you call this
I call it "psychological warfare".
She was playing mind games with me.
She deliberately set up
contradictions of a prison with
only one unarmed guard, unlocked
doors, no security cameras in the
cell, no brutality, keeping me in
total ignorance of what was going
on... just waiting for me to crack.
It’d be enough to drive you insane.
If you weren’t already.
I decided to pretend it was
working. At her next visit, when
she thought I was at my weakest and
could finally make me submit, I
What exactly did she want?
She wanted me to tell her where I
And she thought the best way to do
that was waiting until your
conscience got the better of you?
She sounds as mad as you are, Avon.
Speaking of irrational behavior, is
there any particular reason we’re
staying in this cell?
Where else is there to go?
The outside world as you call it is
saturated. It’s the rainy season,
and rainy season means rain.
Non-stop endless rain...
Spare me the weather report.
It’s warm and dry in here.
What about the rest of the silo?
There’s a price for you being
allowed to find out, Avon.
We want Orac.
It’s our one chance to get off GP
and we intend to take it.
AVON studies both of them carefully.
And don’t think we’ve forgotten
what happened a week ago.
AVON doesn’t reply but gets to his feet.
10. INT. GP CORRIDOR
AVON emerges from the cell, followed by VILA and SOOLIN. He
looks left and right, then chooses left. They follow.
You don’t want directions?
I prefer to trust my own judgement.
After all, when has it ever let you
AVON’s expression hardens, but he says nothing. VILA and
SOOLIN do not see it.
If my route is different from
yours, anyone relying on me to
follow your directions will be
VILA is offended at the implication.
You think this is a trap, don’t
you? That we’ve sold out.
It’s difficult to tell who you can
trust these days.
That’s just charming, that is.
Maybe starving outside would have
been the better option, maybe we
should have stayed out in the rain
for another week and died? Would we
be worthy of trust then?
AVON doesn’t reply but continues down the corridor.
You’re wasting your breath, Vila.
11. INT. GP TRACKING GALLERY
AVON emerges from one of the entrances to the right of the
gallery, stopping short in mild surprise at finding the
control centre so quickly. There is no sign of shootout that
took place; all the bodies are gone, and the systems hum and
titter to themselves.
Cautiously, AVON moves from the walkway into the lower area.
He approaches the patch of floor Blake died on. There isn’t
even a bloodstain. VILA and SOOLIN arrive. They watch as
AVON turns in a circle, repeating his actions in the last
12. INT. GP TRACKING GALLERY (FLASHBACK)
Black and white. AVON turns in a circle, surrounded by
troopers. Interspersed we see AVON shooting a TECHNICIAN
attacking TARRANT, shooting KLYN, shooting BLAKE over and
over again. The dying BLAKE grabs hold of AVON. He speaks,
but we hear VILA’s voice overdubbed.
13. INT. GP TRACKING GALLERY
As before. AVON is back in reality. VILA looks around the
gallery, sound gloomy and slightly afraid.
What happened here?
You tell me.
We were lucky. We survived.
AVON doesn’t seem to know what she’s talking about.
14. INT. GP TRACKING GALLERY (FLASHBACK)
Black and white, voices distorted. The alarms are going off.
AVON is staring, catatonic, at BLAKE’s corpse on the floor.
VILA, SOOLIN, DAYNA and TARRANT stand beyond him. ARLEN is
covering them with her handgun. There is a distant
Be so kind as to drop your guns.
All of you.
VILA, SOOLIN and DAYNA toss their clip-guns to the floor.
You and this nest of rebels are now
prisoners of the Federation. Your
friend Blake said he couldn’t tell
anymore who was Federation and who
wasn’t. He was right. He couldn’t.
TARRANT smiles at her.
You’re a Federation agent?
I’m a Federation officer.
Keeping his hands up, VILA ducks around AVON and moves
toward ARLEN talking reasonably.
Oh, now, look, I’ve never been
against the Federation! I mean,
I’ve only ever been along for the
ride. I’m not even armed. You can’t
kill me! I’m completely harmless
As he speaks, DAYNA ducks down and scoops up the nearest
clip-gun. Before she can aim it, ARLEN fires. DAYNA is flung
back against TARRANT and SOOLIN, dropping her gun.
Devastated, VILA turns and slams his fist down on ARLEN’s
hand, forcing her to drop the gun. His fist instantly swings
up into her face, knocking her backwards. As SOOLIN and
TARRANT lower DAYNA to the floor, VILA snatches up ARLEN’s
discarded gun. He glances at her unconscious body.
He straightens up. A gunshot rings out, and VILA reels
backwards, letting go of the gun as he falls lifeless to the
floor. Behind him we now see a TROOPER standing on the
walkway, holding a smoking sidearm.
15. INT. GP TRACKING GALLERY
As before. AVON turns to VILA.
And how exactly did you "survive"?
Instant reflexes. I was never shot.
You mean you hit the deck as soon
as the firing started?
Something like that. No point
hanging around being heroic. Not
twice in one day.
Was Dayna killed?
She was injured. We didn’t get a
chance to see how badly.
16. INT. GP TRACKING GALLERY (FLASHBACK)
Black and white. VILA is lying on his back beside ARLEN, a
stunned look on his face. His looks around, then he quickly
closes his eyes. Meanwhile, SOOLIN raises her reclaimed
clip-gun and fires. The TROOPER falls dead as TARRANT, now
also armed, heads up onto the walkway.
A second TROOPER breaks cover from the right side of the
gallery, behind the others. He raises his rifle and fires at
SOOLIN. Shocked, she spins, tumbles and falls to the floor
as TARRANT moves and shoots the TROOPER, who collapses.
SOOLIN is lying sprawled on the floor, clearly in a lot of
pain and unable to move. She struggles to keep a grip on her
clip-gun, but only manages to push it away.
17. INT. GP TRACKING GALLERY
AVON looks down at the spot where SOOLIN fell.
You must have been very lucky to
survive a lethal charge.
Who said they weren’t using stun
Why would they bother? They had no
use for any of us alive, and they
weren’t even expecting us to be in
this silo in the first place.
The blast didn’t strike me dead on,
it was still enough to put me down
and keep me there. Basic first aide
was enough to save me.
Maybe that was their plan? They
shoot everyone, pick the ones they
want to stay alive and let the rest
die. They would have wanted Blake
alive, might have got him too if
you hadn’t taken the initiative.
And who exactly gave you that
crucial medical aide, Soolin? The
No, it was me.
And how did you manage to do that,
and escape without detection?
18. INT. GP TRACKING GALLERY (FLASHBACK)
Black and white. AVON is still staring at BLAKE. TARRANT
shoots the TROOPER who shot SOOLIN, and runs down the steps
towards AVON. A third TROOPER emerges from the doorway
directly behind TARRANT.
The latest TROOPER raises his rifle and fires. TARRANT
jerks, grimaces, and crashes backwards onto the steps,
dropping his gun in the process. AVON looks up, startled at
the noise as the TROOPER trains the rifle on AVON. Another
alarm goes off as other TROOPERS arrive.
VILA peers through narrowed eyes as a TROOPER roughly steps
over him to close in on AVON. The thief’s hand falls to land
near Arlen’s discarded gun.
SOOLIN’s eyes are narrowed too, but on the point of passing
out. With difficulty, she tries to peer up at what is
happening, but cannot move.
AVON is now surrounded. The alarms cut out. VILA takes hold
of the gun. AVON raises his own rifle. SOOLIN closes her
eyes. AVON smiles, grimaces and fires.
A control panel directly in front of AVON takes the blast
and explodes in sparks. Instantly the lights flicker and
dim. AVON dives for the cover of Klyn’s console as the
TROOPERS start firing. Two of the TROOPERS are accidentally
blasted by their own side and collapse. The others look
around, confused in the gloom at AVON’s sudden
disappearance. VILA raises the gun and shoots the nearest
TROOPER in the back. The fall, letting off their own gun in
the process and yet another TROOPER falls.
As the remaining TROOPERS turn to see what is attacking
them, AVON emerges from behind the console and fires again.
A TROOPER collapses beside TARRANT’s body. VILA is crawling
along the floor for a side corridor. Running footsteps fill
the air as more TROOPERS head for the gallery. AVON rises
from under cover and shoots a TROOPER, then runs for the
walkway. The remaining TROOPER shoots at AVON but misses,
causing a small explosion off a pillar.
The lights finally flicker on to full strength as VILA ducks
and sprawls himself against the wall, as if he slumped there
after being shot. Three more TROOPERS enter, as AVON fires
again, then flees the gallery. The TROOPERS follow.
For a moment, the gallery is still. Vila opens his eyes to
see, just in front of him, SOOLIN struggling to get up,
obviously in pain. VILA scrambles over to her, gingerly
avoiding BLAKE’s corpse.
Are you all right?
(dist, in agony)
Do you really expect me to say
Come on, let’s get moving and find
some place to hide!
What about the others?
VILA is about to reply when a TROOPER arrives from the far
left entrance. VILA quickly aims and fires the handgun, and
the TROOPER falls backwards. VILA turns back to SOOLIN.
Come on, move!
He helps her up and they hobble past TARRANT further into
the base. Two more TROOPERS appear, spot the fugitives and
open fire. Luckily, VILA and SOOLIN are able to turn the
corner and escape the gunfire.
19. INT. GP CORRIDOR (FLASHBACK)
AVON runs down the corridor, to run into three TROOPERS
marching the other way. The stop as they see each other.
AVON aims at them, when a TROOPER right behind AVON raises
his rifle and uses it as club. Struck on the back of the
head, AVON cries out, drops his weapon and falls limply.
We fade to black before he hits the ground.
20. INT. GP TRACKING GALLERY
And when I regained consciousness I
was in that cell. Not long after I
met Korell for the first time. So
what happened to you after you
crawled away from the action?
The silo was a death trap. So we
got out of it first chance we got.
Between your stupidity and Soolin’s
injury, that is rather unlikely.
Like I said, Avon. First aide. We
found a medical unit and patched
ourselves up. It didn’t take long
and then we managed to get out the
main hatch and out of the compound.
In the middle of a siege? Even more
unlikely. I doubt you’d even have
the time for Vila to break out.
What do you mean? I can open in
seconds what takes the
manufacturers four weeks! Even when
they have the key!
Once we were outside, we looked for
shelter. The nearest ship was the
best bet. Once we were safe inside,
I switched the rear viewers on to
see what was happening.
What was happening?
Not a lot. It had started raining.
A few flyers on the far side of the
Any idea who they where?
No. They might have been
Federation. They might have been
Blake’s friends evacuating. They
might have been Tarrant and Dayna
for all we know.
After that, there was a freighter
take off, from the other side of
the compound, then... nothing.
There was something else though.
It’s nothing. And whatever it was,
it’s not here now.
And what was it?
Hard to say. I think it might have
been some kind of space craft. It
was on the other side of the silo,
through the rain it was difficult
to work out any details.
Describe it, then.
It looked round. Sort of like a
sphere. And it was huge. It also
disappeared after a while and we
haven’t seen it since.
VILA leans on a railing, scowling.
Quiet as the grave.
Did you see any of the troopers
Just corpses of them.
Were they all dead?
We didn’t ask them. Conversation is
never up to much when you’re dead.
It’s hard for them to explain
things. You might have noticed that
when you shot Blake.
So you didn’t see anyone alive. Did
you hear anything?
Hear anything? It was commando
country out there! Hundred of
bounty hunters across the planet,
armed to the teeth, shouting orders
at each other on the communications
channels! Then, after a while, they
Then nothing. It all went silent.
That ship’s communicator, could it
have been faulty?
Equipment failure? We’re not
stupid, Avon, we checked for that.
It was working fine. And we double
There wasn’t much else to do.
AVON turns away from them.
It doesn’t make sense.
I’ll tell you what doesn’t make
sense, Avon. What doesn’t make
sense is you blowing holes in the
one person who could have got us
out of the mess you got us into!
AVON ignores them. VILA’s arm shoots out and grabs AVON’s,
holding him in place. AVON doesn’t look at him.
We nearly died, Avon. For all we
know, Tarrant and Dayna are dead.
We have no ship, no friends and no
clue what’s going on. We’re worse
off than we were on Terminal and
surprise, surprise, look who dumped
us all in it!
He betrayed me, Vila.
No. He didn’t.
VILA roughly pulls AVON around.
He was trying to explain to you
what was going on. This whole thing
was a cover for the rebels! He was
pretending to be a bounty hunter -
what else would he have been doing?
Just what did you expect him to be
doing on this crummy mudball?
Forgive me for not trusting the
judgement of a fourth class
reprobate with the intelligence of
a brick. What proof do you have
that Blake’s "rebellion" wasn’t a
lie to lure followers here for him
Blake didn’t betray us!
Then where did the troopers come
from, Vila? Why did Tarrant say he
betrayed us? Why didn’t he explain?
You shot him. Several times.
So would you, Soolin - or are we
supposed to follow a hired killer’s
moral high ground?
We’re certainly not going to follow
yours, Avon. You’re more trouble
than you’re worth, and if anyone
betrayed us that day, it was you.
So do we shoot you, Avon? After
all, you’ve set a precedent.
Kill me and you never find Orac.
And is that why you hid it from us
too, Avon? Just when exactly did we
betray you? What did we do for you
not to trust us?
He doesn’t trust anyone, does our
Avon. Why should he? It’s not like
he’s done a single damn thing in
his entire life to earn it.
VILA steps closer to AVON.
You know, I might have forgiven you
for shooting Blake. I might have
accepted you trying to throw me out
of an airlock. I’m not saying I
would have liked it, but I might
have come to terms with it. But you
thinking you were in the right,
that you were the innocent party in
all this? You don’t get to do that.
Not any more. No deal, Kerr Avon.
No deal. Understand this.
VILA speaks almost in a whisper.
You deserve to be betrayed.
AVON stares at him, and seems to start to speak for a
moment, but then stops. He turns and glares at Soolin.
Shall we go?
In your own time. Preferably now.
To be continued....