Script for Deliverance

Written by Terry Nation

Directed by Michael E. Briant

(c) 1978 by the British Broadcasting Corporation. Series created by Terry Nation. This is a complete dialogue transcript for research purposes and is not for sale under any circumstances. Format (c) 1993 by Micky DuPree and Kay Teel.

Dramatis Personae

Roj Blake Gareth Thomas
Jenna Stannis Sally Knyvette
Kerr Avon Paul Darrow
Cally Jan Chappell
Vila Restal Michael Keating
Olag Gan David Jackson
Zen Peter Tuddenham
Travis Stephen Greif
Servalan Jacqueline Pearce
Guest cast:
Ensor [i.e., Ensor's son] Tony Caunter
Meegat Suzan Farmer
Maryatt James Lister
Male voice
Computer voice
Male voices

*? = unintelligible

[A star system in an unidentified sector. A small while spacecraft is making slow progress. Through the front view port two men can be seen seated at the flight console.]

[Exterior of Federation Space Headquarters. Interior of Servalan's office. Servalan is seated behind her desk studying a scanner readout. The intercom beeps.]

VOICE[V.O., over comm] The Space Administrators are assembled in the conference hall, Supreme Commander. You are eight minutes behind schedule.

SERVALANI left orders that I was not to be disturbed. I will not see or speak to anyone.

VOICE[V.O.] But the conference --

SERVALANCancel it. It will be reconvened when I am ready.

VOICE[V.O.] Yes, Supreme Commander. [Servalan disconnects.]

COMPUTER[V.O.] Surveillance tracer transmitting. Computer visualization of Spacemaster ship is on-line.

[Exterior of the small white spacecraft. Switch to interior. The two men are flight positions.]

ENSORTake a look up there, Maryatt. [An orange planet is visible through the view port.]

MARYATTWhat is it?

ENSORThat's the planet Cephlon, which means that we're on course and speed. Six more days and we'll be at our destination.

MARYATTYou keep saying "our destination." Just where is it? What's its name?

ENSORYou'll find out. All in good time.

MARYATTBut why the secrecy now? We're on our way. There's nothing to lose by telling me where we're going.

ENSORSecurity's become a habit with us. It comes second nature. Because of it we've enjoyed thirty-odd years of complete independence. That's something we value.

MARYATT[referring to Cephlon] Is there anything down there?

ENSORThere was, once. Yes, once it was the trading and cultural center for this entire star system. Very important, once.

MARYATTWell, what happened?

ENSORWar. Reversion to primitive. Nobody's certain if there's any people left down there. At one time it -- [He is interrupted by a loud, continuous beeping noise.]

MARYATTWhat's wrong? What's the matter?

ENSORWe're...we're getting trajectory shift. [The ship begins to vibrate.] Compensators aren't holding us up. Going over to manual. [To ship] Come on, come on, pull us back. [Ship keeps shifting.] Come on! Come on!

MARYATTWe're picking up speed.

ENSORYes, it's gravity drag from Cephlon. I must have misjudged and got too close.

MARYATTCan you get us out?

ENSORI'm on three-quarter boost as it is. She's not responding! I'm going to maximum. It's all right. It's all right. She's slowing. Compensators beginning to hold. [Ship starts to steady.] Come on, come on, that's my beauty. That's...come on. Pull us back, pull us back. All right, she's coming back. We're all right.

MARYATTDon't do that too often, will you? I'm a very nervous passenger.

ENSORI'm a very nervous pilot.

[Exterior of the craft. There is an explosion. Interior. Flames shoot up from the control panel. The men shield themselves.]

[Liberator flight deck. Gan, Jenna, Avon, Cally and Vila stand watching the scanner display of the other craft. Blake joins the group.]

BLAKEWhat's happened?

AVONThere was an explosion. Could have been a power unit burnout.

JENNAZen located her about five minutes ago. We put her on the scanner to run a security check. Suddenly she just went off course.

CALLYShouldn't we try and help them?

BLAKEIf they're still alive. [To Zen] Identification?

ZENThe ship is a Spacemaster, Series Five. Four neutron power units with a maximum thrust of four by six.

BLAKEDoes she carry life capsules?

ZENStandard equipment specification lists two high-impact, unpowered survival modules.

AVONShe's entering the atmosphere. Beginning to burn up.

[Interior of the burning spacecraft. There is much smoke. Ensor struggles to pick up Maryatt, who has collapsed.]

ENSORMaryatt! Maryatt! Get yourself out, lad! (*?) the life capsule. [Ensor grabs a box, stuffs it in his pocket, and follows a straggling Maryatt to the life capsules.] Come on, Maryatt, you've got to get out! [Exterior shot of the ship swerving out of control.]

[Liberator flight deck.]

ZENNavigation computers estimate six minutes to impact. [Visual display shows computer representation of the out-of- control vessel. Two smaller objects emerge from it.]

BLAKEThey've ejected. Zen, lock tracers on to those capsules. I want to know exactly where they land.

ZENTrace locked on.

[Life capsules are falling toward the planet. The spaceship crashes on Cephlon and explodes.]

[Servalan's office. Servalan watches her scanner, then presses a button on a console.]

COMPUTER[V.O.] Surveillance tracer has ceased transmission. The ship has exploded. [Servalan smiles.]

[The planet Cephlon. A band of primitive men sees smoke from the wreckage beyond a ridge, and goes to investigate.]

[Liberator flight deck. Cephlon is on the visual display. Blake switches it off.]

BLAKE[To Zen] Surface conditions?

ZENThe planet Cephlon has a breathable atmosphere with a high oxygen content. The radiation level is in excess of normal tolerance levels, and prolonged exposure could result in tissue damage. Massive variations in temperature levels. Gravity is one point two five G.

[Avon enters the flight deck dressed in surface clothes and checks his weapon.]

BLAKELife forms?

ZENThere is no current information. Logic units suggest that remaining life may have mutated through exposure to high radiation.

BLAKENone of which sounds very promising. [To Avon] You're sure you want to go down?

AVONAre you afraid that I'll be able to cope with it better than you?

BLAKE[Chuckles] No.

AVONWell, perhaps you ought to be.

BLAKEDown and back as fast as you can, right?


[Liberator teleport area. Jenna is waiting as Avon, Gan and Vila enter. Cally is at the controls.]

AVONWe're going to have to make this fast. The chances are that any survivors won't have come through the landing impact anyway.

JENNAI disagree. They may well be alive.

AVONThat's why we're going down. If we run into any kind of trouble we teleport back up immediately. All right, Cally?

GANDo you know exactly what we're looking for? Because I don't think I've ever seen an impact life capsule.

JENNAThey're bullet-shaped, built to be energy absorbing. Theoretically they could free fall from the edge of the atmosphere onto solid rock without even bruising the people inside.

CALLYIs there a life-support system?

JENNABasic respirator, that's about all. [Blake enters.]

BLAKEThe coordinates place both capsules within one square mile. [Hands Cally the coordinates.] We're going to put you down in the center of the search area.

CALLYCoordinates set.

BLAKEOne of us will stay by the teleport. Be careful.

AVONAll right. [To Cally] Put us down. [Cally works the controls, and the four teleport.]

[Avon, Jenna, Gan and Vila materialize on the rough, drab surface of Cephlon.]

AVON[indicating smoke over the ridge] That must be the wreck of the ship. No point in checking it. We'll split up into pairs to search. Jenna, you take Gan and cover that area. Vila, you come with me.

[They split up and begin search. A primitive man watches Jenna and Gan pass, and follows them. Farther on, Gan and Jenna see a closed door set in the side of a mountain. They go to explore. Gan tries to open the door, but can't. He looks at the ground around the entrance.]

GANNo tracks. Can't be in regular use, anyway. I wonder what's behind it?

JENNAHalf the hill, probably. Come on, let's go and look for those capsules. [As they leave, a circular panel in the door moves aside, revealing a peep-hole.]

[Farther along the route Jenna and Gan are taking, a sealed capsule has landed. Gan and Jenna come upon it.]

GANLet's get it open. [They open the hatch. Maryatt is inside. Gan removes Maryatt's oxygen mask.] He's dead. [Jenna operates her communicator.]

[Another area on the planet's surface. Vila and Avon are searching. Avon raises his communicator.]


JENNA[V.O.] We've found one of the capsules -- [Switch to Jenna and Gan] -- but the man inside is dead.

AVON[V.O.] See if you can find any identification on the body. [Switch to Avon and Vila] Then seal up the capsule.

JENNA[V.O.] Right.

AVONOne down, one to go.

[Jenna and Gan at Maryatt's capsule.]

GAN[Hands Jenna a wallet-sized ID folder] That's all there is. [Jenna looks through it and hands it back to Gan, who puts it in his pocket. They close up the capsule.]

[Another area of Cephlon. Avon and Vila are walking. They spot the second capsule lying open and Ensor sprawled out beside it.]

VILAThere! [They reach the capsule and crouch over Ensor's body.] He looks pretty far gone.

AVONThere's nothing we can do for him here. We must get him up to the Liberator.

VILAWill he live through the teleport stress?

AVONWe'll have to take that chance. Give me a bracelet.

[A primitive is watching Gan and Jenna walking. Gan hears something and stops. Motioning for Jenna to wait, he goes off to explore. His communicator signals.]


AVON[V.O.] We found the second capsule, and the man's alive. We're going to get him up to the Liberator. Stand by for teleport.


[Liberator teleport area. Cally sits on the stairs, listening to music on a headset. Blake sits next to her.]

AVON[V.O.] Bring us up, Cally. [Cally rushes to the controls and operates the teleport switch. Avon, Vila and Ensor are teleported. She operates another switch. Gan is teleported.]

BLAKEIs he still alive?

AVONJust about.

BLAKEGet him to the surgical unit. [Avon, Gan and Vila lift the moaning Ensor up and carry him off. Cally operates another teleport switch.]

[Another corridor on the Liberator. Avon, Gan and Vila carry Ensor to the surgical unit.]


ENSOR[mumbling] Compensators...



GANAll right. Okay. Here we are now. [They lay him down in the surgical couch.] Here we go.

AVON[To Gan] Out of the way.

GAN[To Ensor] Okay.

AVONRespirator. [Vila hands Avon the respirator.]

GAN[To Blake] Oh, I...I found this on the other man down there. [He hands Blake Maryatt's ID folder.]

BLAKE[Takes folder and examines it briefly.] Uh huh. [Cally rushes into the surgical unit.]

CALLYJenna's not back yet.

VILAWhere is she?

AVONGan. You were with her.

GANWell, she was right behind me when we teleported.

BLAKECally, look after him. You three come with me. [Cally goes to Ensor and takes the respirator from Avon. The others rush back to the teleport area. Blake tries the teleport controls but Jenna does not appear. He switches the controls off and operates the communicator.]

BLAKE[into teleport communicator] Jenna. This is Liberator. Do you read me?

[Cephlon's surface. Jenna's teleport bracelet and weapon are on the ground. Jenna is unconscious. Two primitive men are searching through her things.]

[Liberator teleport area. Blake tries the controls again, but nothing appears. Avon operates the teleport, still with no success.]

AVONWe'll go back down.

BLAKEI think you'd better. [Blake teleports Avon, Gan and Vila to Cephlon.]

[Cephlon. Avon, Gan and Vila materialize.]

GANThis way. [Avon and Vila follow him.] I left her here.

VILAThe ground's scuffed about. And there's a footprint. A large footprint. [Avon picks up Jenna's necklace.]

GANThat's Jenna's.

AVONObviously somebody, or something, attacked her.

VILAAnd obviously it won.

GANShe might have made a run for it.

AVONShe would never have taken off her teleport bracelet. Therefore somebody else must have.

GANDo you think they've killed her?

AVONProbably not. If they've robbed and killed her, why drag off the body? Why not just leave it?

VILASo, she's a prisoner.

GANSo let's find her.

AVONWe'll do it a lot faster if we work separately.


AVON[To Vila] Well?

VILABit of a risk, though.

AVONWith the radiation level on this planet, just being here is a risk.

GANLet's get started.

AVONUnless one of us finds something, we'll meet back here in an hour. [They split up to search.]

[Liberator surgical unit. Cally is cleaning Ensor's wounds. Ensor is groaning. Blake paces to and fro.]

BLAKEThey should have found her by now.

CALLYThey will. It's just a matter of time. They'll find her. [Blake picks up Maryatt's ID and looks through it.]

BLAKEWhat about him?

CALLYI don't know. He's in a great deal of pain. [She notices the ID.] What's that?

BLAKEGan found it on the man in the other capsule.

CALLYWho was he?

BLAKEHis name was Maryatt. According to his ID he was a Space Surgeon in the Federation Medical Corps. [Surprised.] He's got a double-A security clearance! He's got a pass for any area in Space Command!

CALLYHe must have been very important. Anything else?

BLAKENo. [Hands ID to Cally.] Some pictures, a woman and two children. [Goes over to Ensor.] Let's see if he's got any identification. [He searches Ensor and finds a box of small round disks that emit a faint hum.]

CALLYWhat are those?

BLAKEI don't know. They look like micro power cells.

CALLYI've never seen that type before.

ENSOR[strangled whisper] me. Help me.

BLAKEYou're quite safe. We've given you something to ease the pain. You're going to be all right.

ENSORMaryatt? What happened...Maryatt?

BLAKEWe found his body. He was probably dead before you left your ship.

ENSOREnergy cells...

BLAKEThey're here. They're quite safe. [He replaces them in Ensor's pocket.]

ENSORM-Must...get to my father. Without them, has only a few days to live.

CALLYGently, gently. Shhh.

ENSORHe'll die. Don't you understand? He'll die without them.

CALLYNow stay calm. to him. Promise. Promise!

BLAKEWe'll do everything we can. Now what was your destination?

ENSORPlanet Aristo.


ENSORNav...Navigation log...give all flight details you need.

BLAKEAll right. We'll run it through our computers. [He takes the flight log.]

ENSORWhen you reach him...tell him...Federation have agreed...all terms. Will million credits for Orac...

BLAKEWhat is Orac?

ENSOROr--- [Starts to moan in pain.]

CALLYHand me the (*?spasm). Quickly!

BLAKEHe won't take the shocks. It'll kill him. [Cally holds the respirator to Ensor's face.]

CALLYWithout it he'll die anyway. Come on. [She gives Ensor three shots. Ensor's breathing becomes more regular.] He's coming through.

BLAKEThat was close.


BLAKEYes, we'll do everything we can. Now you must relax.

ENSORMust go. Now. So little time.

BLAKEWe will leave as soon as the others get back on board.

ENSORNo. Can't wait. Go! Now!

CALLYYou must rest. Shhh.

[Cephlon. Vila meets Gan at the rendezvous point.]


GANNot a single trace. You? [Vila shakes his head. Avon joins them.]

VILASo what do we do now?

AVONStart again. [Lifts bracelet.] Liberator.

[Liberator flight deck. Blake and Cally are just entering. Blake is carrying Ensor's navigation log.]

AVON[V.O.] This is Avon. Do you hear me, Liberator?

BLAKEAvon. Have you found her yet?

AVON[V.O.] No. We're going to start searching again.

BLAKEIs there anything we can do?

AVON[V.O.] I'm open to suggestions.

BLAKEWell, if you haven't found her in four hours, you come back. Cally and I will take over.

AVON[V.O.] Whatever you say.

BLAKEJust don't give up on her. [Surface of Cephlon where Avon, Gan and Vila are standing.]

AVONNo. We won't do that. Not yet. We'll be in touch. [Lowers his communicator.] Let's get started.

[Liberator flight deck. Ensor staggers in.]

ENSORMust go. Now. If we delay any longer, we'll be too late.

BLAKEOne of my crew is lost on that planet. Right now finding her is all I care about.

ENSORBut...but he'll die, if I don't get to him. Don't you understand? My father will die!

CALLYLiberator is ten times faster than the ship you were traveling in. We will get there in time!

ENSORBut I can't risk that! We must go! Now!

BLAKENo! We're staying here for as long as it takes. [Ensor grabs Cally around her neck, drags her to the floor, draws a gun and aims it at Blake.]

ENSORKeep back! [Points gun at Cally's head.] I'll kill her. I mean it. Now you get this ship started. Coordinates eleven, two, intersect five, nine.

BLAKENot a chance! Do you think I'll abandon my crew, leave them on the surface?

ENSORThat's their problem. Now you do as I tell you. Look! I don't want to harm either of you, but I will. I'll kill her, and you. Her first, and then you. Now, don't force me to do it. Now get it started. Now! [Blake goes to the flight controls, but hesitates.] Do it!

[Exterior of the Liberator. It changes course.]

[Liberator flight deck. Ensor is holding Cally to the floor, his gun at her head.]

BLAKEIn flight and on your course.

ENSORCheck it, on your computer.

BLAKEDon't you trust me?

ENSORComputers can't lie. Put it on line.

BLAKEZen, confirm course.

ZENLiberator is on flight course coordinates eleven, two, intersect five, nine.


CALLYAre we to stay like this for the whole flight?

ENSORI've got no choice. I'm sorry about that.

CALLYThe drugs I gave you keep back the pain. How long will you last once they wear off?

ENSORI'll manage.

BLAKEYou'll get tired. The pain will start eating into you. Sooner or later you'll lose concentration. It will need one second and then we'll take you.

ENSORPerhaps. But pick that second very carefully. Misjudge it, you'll both be dead.

[Cephlon. Avon checks his communicator.]

AVONThere's no signal. No response at all. [To Vila] Try yours.

VILA[into communicator] Liberator. Blake. Cally. Do you read our signal? Respond! [Static.] Nothing.

AVONThere can't be a fault on both communicators. They must have moved out of range.

GANWithout warning us? Why?

AVONI wish we could ask them. There could be Federation ships in the area, I suppose.

VILAMeanwhile we're stuck down here.

AVONThat's largely academic at the moment. Let's hope they're back on station when we find Jenna. We'll cover the ground again, in that direction.

[Servalan's office. Servalan is seated at her desk. The intercom beeps.]


VOICE[V.O.] Space Commander Travis is here.

SERVALANSend him in. [Travis enters and stands before Servalan's desk. She ignores him for a moment, concentrating on something else.]

TRAVISYou sent for me?

SERVALANYou've lost some of your fire, Travis. Whatever happened to your pride?

TRAVISMy pride, Supreme Commander?

SERVALANI ignored you. A calculated insult. You obviously recognized it as such.


SERVALANAnd yet you remained silent. There was a time when you wouldn't have taken an insult like that from anyone. Not even me.

TRAVISTrue. I want my command back. To get it I'll do whatever's necessary. If you think my silence is weakness, you mistake me.

SERVALANBetter. I was afraid that the suspension and the court of inquiry into your mishandling of the Blake affair might have broken your spirit.

TRAVISI don't break that easily.

SERVALANYou were expected to resign the service. Why didn't you?

TRAVISI've told you, I want my command back. It's the only way I can catch --

SERVALANYou really are obsessed with Blake, aren't you?

TRAVISIt's my right.

SERVALANIt's my intention that you should get another chance to exercise that right, and at the same time redeem your somewhat blemished record. However, there are more important things than Blake.

TRAVISNot for me.

SERVALANMore immediate, then. Orac, for example.


SERVALANThere've been rumors about it for years. A scientist called Ensor has been working on it. Despite considerable investigation, we've never been able to locate him.

TRAVISAnd you want me to find him for you.

SERVALANMm-mm. It's no longer necessary. A little while ago, Ensor's son came to see me. His father was ill. He needed medical help and equipment. While he was here, he showed me plans of his father's creation -- Orac. It is a brilliant achievement. There is nothing else like it in the universe. And he wanted to sell it. [Travis begins to say something.] Expensive, Travis. He wants one hundred million.

TRAVISOne hundred million? Are you sure whatever it is, is worth that much?

SERVALANIt's worth ten times that much.


SERVALANSo I agreed to buy it.

TRAVISDo you have the authority?

SERVALANNo. Now listen, Travis, I've told no one of this. Ensor and his father live alone on the planet Aristo. He made it clear that if there was any attempt to take Orac by force, he would destroy it.

TRAVISWould he do that?

SERVALANOh, yes. He thought it through very carefully. He wouldn't even reveal the location of the laboratory until I'd agreed to all his terms.

TRAVISWhich were?

SERVALANA Space Surgeon was to go with him. I sent Maryatt.

TRAVISHow much did you tell him?

SERVALANOnly what his orders were.

TRAVISHe's a good man.

SERVALANMaryatt was to remain with Ensor as a hostage until the transaction was complete. I was to get the hundred million, take it in an unarmed ship, and in return I'd get Maryatt and Orac.

TRAVISSo now all you have to do is to persuade the Federation to let you spend one hundred million.

SERVALANThat could take years.

TRAVISYou have an alternative?

SERVALANYes. It occurred to me that if Ensor didn't get back in time, then in a very little while his father would die. So I took the precaution of placing a small explosive device in his ship.

TRAVISYou said Maryatt was on board.

SERVALANYes, that was unfortunate, but unavoidable, I'm afraid. Oh, don't you see? Orac is ours for the taking.

TRAVISWhen do we leave?

SERVALANStart making arrangements, maximum security. No flight plan is to be filed. When we do leave it must be in total secrecy. However long it takes, Travis, you must cover our tracks completely. No one must know anything about it.

TRAVISRight. [Starts to leave, then pauses.] You're almost as ruthless as I am.

SERVALANYou underestimate me, Travis.

TRAVISIt begins to look that way. [Pauses]

SERVALANWhat's the matter?


SERVALANWhat about him?

TRAVISHis disappearance -- there may be questions.

SERVALANIn twelve hours I shall have him posted as a deserter.

TRAVISAnd his family go into slavery on one of the frontier worlds.

SERVALANIt is the normal procedure in a case of desertion.

TRAVISOf course. Do you remember the medic that saved my life? [Touches his eye patch.]

SERVALANYou're wasting time.

TRAVISIt was Maryatt.

SERVALANDoes it matter?

TRAVISNo... No. Only Blake matters now.



[Cephlon. Avon, Gan, and Vila are searching. The sound of rocks falling attracts their attention and they look up. Two primitives are throwing rocks at them. Avon draws his gun, fires, and shoots one of the men. The man tumbles down the hill.]

AVONLet's get out of here! [They run, pursued by the primitives. Beyond a pass they encounter another group, carrying sticks and other crude weapons. They change course and come to the door in the side of the mountain. The primitives are following.]

VILAThere's hordes of them! And they don't seem to like us much!

GANHow can you tell?

AVONGet down! [The primitives heave stones at them. The three crouch by the door.] [To Vila] See if you can open the door. [Avon draws his gun, as more men appear from over the surrounding hills. Vila tries the door.]

VILAI can't do it! [They remain there as the men come towards them. Suddenly the door opens behind them. Avon and Vila enter.]

VILAGan! [Gan follows them inside.]

[Interior of a small candlelit chamber. The door closes just as the primitives reach it. As the three catch their breath, a young woman enters from a side tunnel. Avon turns, then stops, surprised, as he sees her.]

AVON[pointing gun at her] Who are you?

MEEGATAnd you shall answer. [She approaches and prostrates herself before him.] My name is Meegat, Lord.


AVONYou opened the door?

MEEGATI opened the door.

AVONWe're grateful. We seem to have made a few enemies outside.

MEEGATThat my Lord might find safety from his enemies.

GANWell, she seems to be on our side.

VILAYes, but the poor woman's insane.

AVONNot necessarily.

[A primitive camp in another area of the planet. Tents made of skins are clustered around a fire. In one of the tents, Jenna is tied to a pole. She is trying to cut the bindings around her wrists. A primitive guards her, but his attention is on another task. She saws through the bindings, lifts a stone and hits the guard with it. He collapses. She looks out the front opening and sees the other primitives. She breaks the bindings around her ankles, peers out the back of tent, sees that it is clear, then crawls out under the skin walls. She stops abruptly as a primitive suddenly steps in front of her.]

[Liberator exterior]

[Liberator flight deck. Ensor is still holding his gun to Cally's head. Blake stands by the controls. Ensor is obviously tired. Blake moves toward them. Ensor stirs, and raises his gun to point at Blake. Blake stops and holds up his hands.]

ENSORGet back in your place.

[Cephlon. The candlelit chamber.]

MEEGAT[still kneeling before Avon] I will describe the way to the scavengers' camp so that you may rescue your follower.

AVONMy follower? I never really thought of her in those terms. Are you alone here?

MEEGATYes, Lord. Everything is as it was written. One waits.

AVONFor what?

MEEGATFor you.

VILA[aside, to Gan] I told you she was mad.

GAN[to Meegat] How long have you been waiting?

MEEGATAll of my life, as those before me waited. But it is I who welcome you. Welcome, Lord, welcome! [She embraces Avon's ankles.]

AVON[extricating himself] Yes, well, let's not start all that again.

GANYou've hurt her feelings now.

MEEGATI have offended you.

AVONNo, you haven't offended me.

MEEGATForgive me!

AVONI forgive you. [Stoops and brings her to her feet.]

VILAYou're enjoying this, aren't you?

AVONProbably. How many of your people are there?

MEEGATLess than a hundred now. Our numbers grow smaller. More die. [They begin to walk through the chamber.]

AVONAnd the scavengers?

MEEGATPerhaps twice as many, but they too are dying. We expected you to come long ago. [They stop. Meegat goes forward and opens a set of double doors. They enter a large, dusty room with four banks of consoles topped by candles. There are buttons, scanner screens, wires, etc. on the consoles. At the front of the room is a wall of dirt-covered windows.]

VILAMost of this stuff looks operational. There's no sign of any damage. You have a technology like this and still get your light from those? [Indicates candles.]


VILAAll this.

MEEGATBut it does not provide light.

GANWell, it could, Meegat, if it was working.

AVONOf course. That's why they were waiting for us.

MEEGATAll things are known to you. You are truly Lord. [Kneels before Avon, holding his hand.]

VILACounting yourself, that makes two people who think you're wonderful. [Avon lifts his hand and Meegat rises.]

AVONTell me about the prophecy.

MEEGATThe ancients promise that strangers not of this world would be the means of our deliverance.

GANLook, Meegat, we're not really gods from the skies, you know. We're just men from a spacecraft.

VILAWith problems of our own.

MEEGATYou have come. The waiting is over. As it was promised, the Lord Avon will save our race. [At the front of the chamber, Gan wipes away dirt from a window panel. Behind the window is a rocket.]

GANLook at this.

AVON[looking through window] A chemical rocket in launch position.

MEEGAT[as if reciting] He shall recognize deliverance and speak its name. He shall speak its name as a thing known and understood. As to him all things are known and understood. [Kneels before Avon.]

VILA[aside, to Gan] Been alone too long, definitely. [Meegat rises.]

AVONIs there a legend of deliverance?

MEEGATYes, Lord.

AVONTell me about it.

MEEGATBut you know it.

AVONAh. Well, tell me about it anyway.

MEEGATOur fathers fought a great war, and Kashell the Wise dreamed that all life would end in this place.

GANSeems he was right.

MEEGATSo Kashell sought a way to preserve our race. A way for it to survive in a new place among the stars. And the way was found.

VILAThat ship couldn't carry enough people to establish a new community.

AVONIt could carry dormant cells.

GANGenetic banks and brood units. Like those in the projectile we took on board the Liberator?

AVONThe same principle, yes. These seem to be a little more advanced, though.

VILABut did they do it?

AVON"And the way was found." Does it go on?

MEEGATDeliverance was prepared. And Kashell the Wise was satisfied that it was good.

GANIf there are cells on that ship, would they still be viable? I mean, could they be incubated into a new race of men after all these years?

AVONTheoretically the fertility span would be unlimited. The brood units would be programmed to activate on landing. If they set it up right, there's no reason why it shouldn't still work. [To Meegat] Go on.

MEEGATAll that was needed to complete deliverance was the word of Kashell. But our fathers killed him, and the word was forgotten. And so we wait for a new word from beyond the stars. We wait for deliverance. We wait for the nameless Lord whose name shall be spoken by the one who waits. Meegat speaks his name. His name is Avon.

VILA[looking down at console] Avon! [Avon looks at a glowing button Vila indicates.]

AVONIt's an active power source register.

VILAThat's what I thought. The automatics have closed it down.

AVONWell, if we could find the manual override we should be able to reactivate it.

VILA[tries another button] Output control is locked.

AVONThere's a circuit breaker here. [Flips the circuit breaker.] Try the output control now.

VILAIt's free.

GANThis alpha scale is registering.

AVONTake it to level one, see what we get.

VILANo, nothing's showing.


AVONThen there must be a secondary fail-safe. [Tries another button.] Try it again, Gan. [There is a buzzing sound.]

GANIt's coming in!

AVONTake it to level two.

VILALevel two, and we have power. [There is a croaking sound.]

AVONLet me see now. [Turns some knobs on console until the croaking sound becomes a voice.]

VOICE[V.O. (in background)] Telemetry and guidance are rebalance...fuel and ignition, capability is green...inboard computers are green and functioning. Programs are stable... [The monitors on the consoles begin to show various readings and displays.]

GANIt's coming in. [Avon tries another switch and the lights come on in the room.]

VOICE[V.O. (in background)] ...environment is...solid and stable. Countdown minus sixty and holding...telemetry and guidance are balanced...

MEEGATBehold, deliverance! [She looks through the window at the rocket. The launch area around it is illuminated.]

VOICE[V.O. (in background)] ...secondary stage is clear for count...meteorology checks confirmed. Clear for count...control checks confirmed...are cleared, green, and stable...telemetry systems... [The countdown check continues in the background.]

GANDo you really think we could launch that ship?

AVONIf the people who built it did their job properly, I don't see any reason why not. And it does seem we have a reputation to live up to.

VILAOh, you certainly do, Lord Avon. I wonder why she picked on you? [Meegat turns to look devotedly at Avon.]

AVONWell, now, you are hardly the stuff that gods are made of.

VILAAnd you are, I suppose?


GAN[gestures] Look, before we try to fulfill any more prophecies, could we uh ...

AVONYes. We must find Jenna.

[Liberator flight deck. Ensor is rigging his gun.]

ENSORI've put the energizer onto automatic. If I let it go, it will spring back and the gun will fire. If I pass out, the gun will fire by itself. Now you make certain that I don't go to sleep.

[Cephlon. The launch room.]

MEEGATIf she is alive, you will find her.

AVONIf she is alive. [Takes Meegat by the hand. They start toward the exit.] Well, are we ready?

GANWe're ready. [The four leave the launch room. Gan closes the double doors.]

MEEGATI will await your return.

VILAYou'll wait up there by the door?

GANIf we make it, we'll be back.

MEEGATThe Lord Avon will protect you. [Vila gives Gan a skeptical look and the two of them go on ahead.]



AVONMake sure that it is us before you open the door. The scavengers know about it now. [He touches her cheek and leaves.]

[Cephlon. The primitives' camp. Gan, Vila, and Avon are watching the camp from a hill. The primitives are gathered around the fire.]

AVONVila and I will go round and take a closer look. You stay here.

GANIf it comes to killing remember my limiter implant.

VILAI'll stay up here if you like. [Avon glances at him, then the two of them go down the hill toward the camp. Avon makes his way to the back of the tents, and is shortly joined by Vila.]

AVONYou keep a watch. I'll try and find her. [They draw their guns. Avon checks one of the tents. A scavenger comes from another of the tents as Avon and Gan duck out of sight. Avon pulls back the skin from a second tent, then moves to a third. He raises the flap and sees Jenna tied up inside. Facing Jenna with his back to the rear of the tent, a scavenger is eating. Avon lets the skin drop and puts his gun away. He picks up a heavy stick and swings it against the tent. The man inside falls forward. Avon enters the tent and releases Jenna. Outside, one of the primitives sneaks up on Vila and grabs him. Vila cries out. The scavengers are alerted by the scuffle. As Jenna and Avon emerge from the tent the man throws Vila to the ground and comes after Avon. Avon kicks the man hard, then the three run off, joined by Gan. They are pursued by the scavengers, who carry sticks and bones as weapons.]

GAN(*?) this way. We'll be safe there. [Jenna runs to the door in the mountain. A scavenger comes upon her and grabs her. Gan arrives and more scavengers come after them. There is a scuffle. Vila and Avon reach the door and help pull the scavengers from Jenna.]

JENNAHelp! [Inside Meegat is waiting. She opens the door. Jenna, Vila and Avon enter. Gan is fighting off the scavengers.]

AVONGan! [Gan rushes inside and closes the door just as the scavengers reach it.]

[Inside the small chamber.]

AVON[to Meegat] That was close.

VILANo respect. They obviously didn't realize who you were.

JENNA[to Meegat] Thank you. [Meegat does not acknowledge her. Avon and Meegat move on. Jenna follows.]

VILA[to Gan] You all right?

GANYou know, Vila, for a minute out there, I was actually quite beginning to enjoy myself.

VILAYou're as mad as Meegat. [Gan laughs.]

[Liberator flight deck. Ensor is losing his grip on his gun as he loses consciousness.]

BLAKECally! [Cally rolls away. Ensor collapses and rolls on the floor. The gun goes off, the shot hitting the side of a flight console. Ensor lies on the floor, groaning.]

BLAKEYou all right?

CALLYYes. Yes, I think so.

BLAKE[bending over Ensor] He's almost gone.

ENSOR[hoarsely] The microcells ... get to father ... Orac ... [He goes limp.]

BLAKEHe's dead. [He takes the package of microcells from Ensor's pocket.]

CALLYWhat is Orac?

BLAKEI don't know. If we deliver these, perhaps we'll find out. Got to get the others first. Zen, direct route for the planet Cephlon. Maximum speed.


[Exterior. The Liberator changes course.]

[Cephlon. The launch room. Avon, Vila, Gan, and Jenna are working at the consoles. Meegat watches Avon. The automated countdown voices continue in the background.]

JENNAAvon, look at this. It's a sub-beam communications system.

AVONIt's an interesting antique.

JENNALook at the range scales.

AVONYes. Liberator can receive and transmit sub-beam. Try it. [He goes to another console.] Right. I think everything is functional. We are ready for countdown.

[Liberator flight deck. Blake and Cally are at the flight consoles.]

JENNA[V.O.] Liberator, this is Jenna. Do you read me, Liberator?

BLAKEWe read you, Jenna. Are you all right?

JENNA[V.O.] I'm safe and well. What happened to you?

BLAKEA slight detour. We'll tell you when we see you. We'll be in teleport range in about four hours.

JENNAWe'll be waiting. In the meantime, Avon's about to become a legend.


JENNA[V.O.] Out.

[Cephlon. The launch room.]

JENNAThey're on their way.

AVONSo are they. [Presses a switch and the final countdown begins on the monitors.]

VOICE[V.O.] Ten. Nine. Eight. Seven. Six. Five. Four. Three. Two. One. We have lift-off. [The rocket lifts off.]

AVONMeegat, I'm sorry you've waited so long.

MEEGATOur waiting brought you.

AVONThat seems like a poor reward, somehow.

[The rocket is climbing through space.]

[Liberator flight deck. The whole crew is present.]

ZENThe rocket is now beyond sensor range.

AVONHave the navigation computers made a projection?

ZENIt is calculated that the rocket will make planet-fall in the system Magdalen Alpha.

AVONHow many suitable planets are there in that system?

ZENThere are four with compatible biospheres.

AVONFlight time?

ZENFive hundred earth years.

VILAYou won't be a legend in your own lifetime, then.

GANFertility cells wouldn't know about us, anyway.

CALLYMeegat does. [To Avon] Did she really think you were a god?

AVONFor a while.

BLAKEHow did it feel?

AVONDon't you know?

BLAKEYes. I don't like the responsibility, either. [Avon rises, looks at Blake, then leaves the flight deck.] Now we have another. Ensor's father. Zen, have you laid in a course for Aristo?

ZENCourse for the planet Aristo is computed and laid in.

BLAKESpeed standard by six, Jenna.

JENNAStandard by six.

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