Who Are You, Part 2

Characters: Ryath Oaks, Tomás Darquin, Yoshino Marina

Ryath’s Flyer was only a few days’ travel off the hyperspace beacon to Zagros 7. It wouldn’t take her long to catch up with the Phoenix.

Ryath kept out of the cargo bay, away from Olyn’s body. Having retrieved it, she had found an unstable inner peace she didn’t want broken by the sight of his mangled body. She knew she had to deal with it soon, but not now, and not until Olyn’s tech had been found. She couldn’t send him ‘beyond’ until the tech was reunited with the body.

“What do you want with his tech, Sherina?” Ryath mumbled as she viewed the images from the Flyer’s sensors.

Nothing but hyperspace! It was as it should be. Only mages and the First Ones ever traveled this far off the beacon.

She had been surprised to find the probe in Darquin’s office still operational. She had also been surprised to find Yoshino there when she accessed the probe. Yoshino was leaning over Darquin. They were at his desk, analyzing a data file, but the way Yoshino barely touched him, the look on her face told Ryath all she needed to know. Darquin, usually cautious around her, let her get so close now. It confirmed his feelings too.

Briefly Ryath felt betrayed, felt jealous. She had not realized she had felt like that towards him–had thought only one man made her feel that way! Not that he was available to her either. How had she been so blind!

Then she remembered. She had known it, had even wanted to express it once. But love and mages don’t mix well. This she knew too well, and had smothered her feelings.

She would keep on smothering them until the Rangers and she parted company, and then she would forget. She would go on with her life. What life it was!

All emotions were raw to her now. Each heightened, and so painful. She retired to her quarters and fell asleep.
Ryath rested on this journey. She had slept for much of the first day, and spent the second meditating. In two days she expected to arrive at Zagros 7, before the Phoenix.

Later, Ryath found herself monitoring Ranger transmissions as she waited for the Phoenix to join her at Zagros 7. She noticed an urgent message from the Phoenix to the Ranger Council. She stopped monitoring all other transmissions and scanned this one.

“The Narns and Drazi destroying Ranger probes?” She was concerned. Quickly she accessed the FTL probes of the Mages. She requested a playback of the last two days. What she saw amazed her.

“The ingeniousness of it!” she smirked. “And to think neither race showed much potential in tactics, until now!” The smile broadened on her face.

She disassociated with the FTL probe once the Phoenix came into view. Ryath knew what happened from this point on. Captain Hale was always very accurate in her reports.

The Flyer chimed; another signal picked up on the Phoenix comm system. Ryath accessed it. It was a reply from the Council. The Phoenix was off to the Rolui system. Ryath had to meet up with them on route, or wait for them at the edge of Rolui space. Not a prospect she relished!

Ryath was surprised by the grace and power of the Phoenix as it was set against the backdrop of Hyperspace… She hadn’t looked that closely at the ship before, and had missed its beauty. Ryath hailed the Phoenix.

Phoenix. I wish to speak to Captain Hale.” An image of Ryath, hood covering her head, flowed into view on the Phoenix Bridge.

“Err, I’ll see what–I’ll check, see if the Captain is free. Please hold,” the obviously nervous crewman stammered.

“No! I wish to board and see Captain Hale in person. Please clear me for landing!” Ryath had used her commanding voice hoping it would overpower his need to check first and just allow her on board.

It did. He told her to land in the cargo bay and wait for an escort. She nodded her acquiescence and terminated the transmission.

Darquin and Yoshino were still in his office, pouring over the files in her data crystal, when a comm message made him freeze.

“Four ninety beta. Four ninety beta.”

He tapped the link on his hand. “Darquin four-four!” Giving her a nervous glance, he stood up and checked his PPG. “Marina-chan…they’ll need you on the bridge.”

“What happened?”

“Secondary shuttlebay. We’re being boarded.”

Phoenix–“Who are you, Part 2” © 2003 Niki Hipwood & Joe Medina

Babylon 5 TM and © 2003 Warner Bros.