Another Aspect of Blake's 7
By James I. Ide
SERIES C / EPISODE 7
[ SUMMARY ]
[ SCRIPT ]
[ VIDEO ]
"Children of Auron"
Cally didn't think anyone noticed when she left the flight deck. They were all still bickering away at each other.
As usual, Vila, just being himself, had managed to irritate Tarrant in some minor way and they had started trading insults. Cally had tried to stop the whole thing at its inception, but she only managed to draw their fire next. Then Dayna had joined in ranged on Tarrant's side. After that Avon had decided to add to the confusion by attacking everyone impartially. It was when she found herself participating, taking sides in a positively stupid argument, that she realized she had to escape. She hated to return to her quarters, but there was only so much she could tolerate.
Sitting in her quiet cabin, Cally had never felt so alone. There was no one to talk with anymore, no one to tell her fears and troubles to, no one to understand... no friends...
What in hell is the matter with all of us? We used to function as a crew-- Blake. It was Blake. If only Blake were here to give us some purpose, some direction, she thought. Something to think about besides ourselves! Something to do besides pick each other apart. Blake, how in the universe did you ever manage to keep our mismatched lot together?
For the hundredth time she thought, I should have gone with Clinician Franton. No one here would have missed me. And I might have been of some use to her. It was awful being the only Auronar on board-- worse: one of the few Auronar left alive anywhere.
The tears came again. She didn't think she could have any tears left, but every time she thought of Auron she thought of her sister Zelda, and when she thought of Zelda tears flowed. Zelda was dead. Dead because she had loved life. She had gone back to save the babies. If only she hadn't taken off the teleport bracelet, she would have been safe on Liberator when Servalan fired on the Bio-Replication Plant-- and you'd be with me now, Zel!
If ifs and ands were pots and pans there'd be no need of tinkers-- you can't go on like this, Cally chided herself. It's over. She's dead and gone and nothing will change that now. You did all that could be done.
At least Zelda had a quick death, a clean death. But what of all the others who died from the plague? Alone, with no care, no comfort, seeing friends and family dying on every side--
It was horrible to think of.
We had a cure, but it was too slow and the plague was too fast... perhaps we should have blasted the whole surface of the planet to save you the suffering, she thought, bitterly.
She made herself drink some of the fortified juice she had concocted with Orac's advice: Mother Orac's Magic Elixir, she called it. Solid food just wouldn't go down these days and she knew that as bad as the mental stress was, she couldn't bear it if it were to compound with physical stress as well. And the mental stress would pass more quickly if her body was well taken care of-- or so she kept telling herself. But it seemed this time that the hurt was too deep and it would never go away.
Damn you, Zelda! Couldn't you have loved your own life a little more?
A little more juice. Sleep, Cally. You need sleep. But sleep was the last thing she wanted. The dreams were almost unbearable...
But the silence was worse. It was the fear of the silence in her head before sleep that kept her awake until exhaustion claimed her.
"You can sit there feeling sorry for yourself, Cally," Mother said from the doorway, "but it won't change anything. It will only make everyone else tired of you."
"But I should have won! It should have been mine!"
"I know. You did your best. But someone else was better. That's the way life is."
"Then I'll never be good enough!"
"Of course you will."
"I won't," Cally said, scrunching deeper into her reading chair, drawing in upon herself.
"There is one thing no one will ever be better at than you, though," her mother said, coming to stand by her chair.
"Being Cally," she said, stroking Cally's hair.
"What good is that?" Cally asked, angrily shaking off her mother's hand. "Stupid old Cally can't even plot the union of two gametes properly."
"Cally, stop thinking about yourself. Try thinking about someone else for a change. You may have lost the scholarship, but Zelda wasn't even in the running. She feels bad, too, you know." Mother watched her for a moment. "Do you know what she feels the worst about?"
Cally didn't answer.
"That you lost."
"I know," she admitted, sullenly.
"And she could use your help."
"Nobody needs my help."
"Zelda does. Can't you feel that?"
Cally didn't want to let anyone in yet; she held onto the silence.
"You've always had the quicker understanding. And you have the knack of explaining things. Talk to her."
Cally didn't answer; she just stared out the window.
"I'll never understand how you two can be identical and yet so different," said Mother, sighing. "Someday you'll have to explain it to me. Talk to Zelda, Cally."
In a little while, Cally let down the barriers in her mind and Zelda was there, needing her. "Don't cry, Zel," she thought to her twin, "next time we'll show them all."
It was comforting to be needed.
The silence was gone; quiet voices murmured in Cally's mind again.
Without thinking, before she was fully awake, she reached out with her mind, much as one would reach out in sleep to touch a lover, seeking comfort and reassurance, to each of the voices, calling out without words, greeting them the way one did with family on Auron. Dayna, Vila, Tarrant, Avon. She called to each in turn, opening her mind to them--
Suddenly she was fully awake, listening with growing astonishment to their voices. Their voices were faint, and there weren't any words, but...
Though none of them had consciously sensed the light touch of her mind, as each one was touched, the thought of Cally floated to the surface and along with it came a spark of feeling for her. Each in his own way, each to a different degree-- even cold and detached Avon-- each knew of her sorrow and-- they care, she thought in amazement. They do care.
Tears came again, but comfort, too. She wasn't quite alone.
They weren't quite family.
Cally listened to each of the voices again, listened hard, trying to understand each, but she felt more than heard the unfocused surface thoughts and emotions.
If only you weren't all headblind we could all talk to each other! she thought in frustration. If you understood each other--
They couldn't, but maybe she could-- she could--
And if she could understand them, maybe she could find a way to pull them all together again.
Blake had done it. Without telepathy.
Perhaps she could, too.
It was something to do.
And perhaps she could be of some help to them all.