And watch the fools search forever."
Psalms of Koscs
"Saving Light from a Black Sun" is episode 16 of Season 5.
Every 50 years, Methus-2 shuts down and goes out for 1 hour. As the Seefran locals prepare for their celebration and street dance, the Andromeda Ascendant is poised to dive into the sun’s heart to repair it. Seamus Harper has discovered that part of the celebratory custom is a symbolic carbon block. What the Seefrans don’t know is that the block is actually a group of carbon nano-fibers implanted with structural design information of the Seefra System. As Harper begins to extract the vital information via heat, he creates a small explosion seen in the bar, blanketing Harper in black soot and sending Beka ducking for cover in the aftermath of the explosion. Afterwards a timer begins counting down and a diagram of Methus-2 comes onto one of Harper's screens. Just then the sun blinks out as expected and the Andromeda plunges through the latent surface and drives towards the core’s southern pole. The Andromeda stays put as Telemachus Rhade and Trance Gemini launch in a slipfighter to the southern portal. Harper tells Beka Valentine and Doyle that his Vedran carbon bundle also contains a code for keeping the sun dark for 3 hours. Repairs must be done within that window. However, there is a problem. The Vedrans designed the core to act as a maze so intruders would get lost and be killed when the sun re-activated. He then uploads the sun’s design maps into Doyle and sends them on their way, alerting Rhade that they will have an accurate map to the sun’s fusion core. As communication will be erratic once they are inside Methus-2, Dylan Hunt will remain aboard Andromeda to act as the liaison between Harper (who is on the planet) and the repair team (who are inside the sun). As Trance and Rhade walk the labyrinth, she worries they’ve overlooked the obvious: that this sun is not just a broken machine but houses a life force, perhaps an avatar of its own.
With Trance and Rhade searching the southern pole, Beka and Doyle begin their search at the northern. Whichever team arrives at the core first will make repairs; the other will harvest fuel for Andromeda. Rhade gets an intermittent signal from Dylan just as a door crashes shut in their path. Beka and Doyle experience the same. Doyle refers to her diagrams and finds the core has the ability to change its configuration, deterring saboteurs. Rhade tries a side door. When he feels the area is clear, he beckons Trance, but she feels a malevolent force approaching.
Back on the planet, Harper wakes from a brief nap to find both suns burning, even though his 3 hour window is not over. He sprints outside in a panic and immediately blames himself for the loss of the crew. Devastated, he gets drunk until he notices the display from his crystal shows Andromeda unharmed in real time. The ship was protected by the mantle. The sun blinks out again and the citizens resume the celebration and street dance. Trance and Rhade felt the flash and notice their equipment has all burned out. With no map or clock, they must follow her intuition to find the core. Beka and Doyle are in worse shape as Doyle’s systems are off-line from the flash. Beka hears Trance’s voice and a corridor opens up before her. A cloaked Trance steps into the light and then walks down the new passage.
Beka chases her until doors slam all around, trapping her. Rhade finds a spot where he can contact Dylan, but Trance steps through a door and slams it shut, trapping him. He kicks the wall in frustration and a chunk falls out. The whole structure is made of carbon. Dylan cross-references Methus-2’s diagrams with Vedran ship design. Judging by the ship’s files, Dylan determines Rhade is close to his goal.
Trance follows the corridor and finds herself face to face with her cloaked twin, who tries to convince her to rejoin her nebula as perfect, undivided essence. Trance refuses, but her twin traps her with only one corridor to follow. Beka remains trapped but discovers that she too is closed in by fragile carbon and begins chipping her way out. Doyle comes back online and hears her pounding. She finds a weak spot in the wall and hammers her way through. They realize the Vedrans trapped their deuterium fuel in the stable carbon nanofibers. She comms Rhade but Dylan interrupts, telling her to return to the Maru and use its engines to heat the carbon and release the fuel, so they can scoop it up and return to Andromeda. Then he heads to the core and meets up with Rhade. They find a platinum cylinder overflowing with fiber optics cables and a timer counting down to ignition. He checks the display and discovers the conduits are jammed from a lack of repair. He dials the console to put a burst of energy through them to clear it, hoping it won’t jump start the star too early. He types in the code and they exit quickly, not seeing Trance and her twin step from behind the cylinder. Her twin hopes to ruin their work, but Trance seeks to stop her and the two beings spin faster and faster, matching the surging container. Methus-2 flares up once more, just as it did when Trance’s twin arrived, and goes dark again. The door opens and Dylan sees Trance standing in front of the cylinder. They bolt out the door.
Two Slipfighters rocket away from the core towards Andromeda, but Beka and Doyle are still on the surface. Their engines locked up as they heated the carbon to collect deuterium fuel. Dylan takes the Andromeda to pick them up. With less than 2 minutes remaining, they swoop in and fire Bucky cables onto the Eureka Maru’s hull. They reel them in with fire near the hull. They barely outdistance the igniting sun. Trance reads Methus-2 at full power, its flickering ceased.
Beka approaches Dylan quietly and tells him of the cloaked Trance she saw in the sun's core, the one who trapped her and left her to die. Dylan knows their Trance is not capable of betrayal, but he does not know there is a discarded cloak lying on the floor at the core of Methus-2.
- Black Sun has several religious and occult backgrounds.
- The Star's inner maze resembles the Labyrinth.
- The quote refers to the phrase: "hiding in plain sight".
- The quote refers to creating the illusion of a threat, which creates paranoia in the victim.
- Several of the "Thirty Six Stratagems" are focused on creating an illusion to conceal the truth.
Dylan: Be careful Rhade.
Rhade: What fun would that be?
Doyle: Provided there are no surprises.
Harper: Please don't bite the hand that solders you.
Beka: There is nothing in the Methus Diagrams about a maintenance code.
Harper: The information I'm getting from this rock is solid.
Doyle: If Methus-2 is broken, the mechanism fails....
Harper: Thank you, and we are macrocosmic roadkill.
Doyle: We could be walking around in circles until the sun ignites.
Beka: Now we can go hang ourselves.
Harper: Ah ah. Got you something.
(Harper uploads something via his datapad to Doyle)
Harper: There. Now you can go hang yourselves.
Rhade: Adventures were more fun when it was just bad guys lining up, letting us shoot them.
Dylan: Yeah. No glory in having to think for a living.
Dylan: Vedrans like to play "Hide in Plain Sight". That fish tank is the furnace.
Rhade: And it's in a real bad need of a cleaning.
Rhade: Even at half capacity. This boiler is pumping out billions of lumens. If it hasn't cleared the blockage, what will?
Dylan: Maybe a burst at 10 times the normal output will.
Rhade: Have you ever heard of overkill?
Dylan: Ever hear of last resorts?
Rhade: Once we prime the pump, we'd better duck, tuck and roll.
Dylan: Get ready to duck, tuck, and roll.
(They both take cover as the furnace pumps the flash)
Harper: Guys? Guys? Talk to me, let me know you're alive. Insult me for crying out loud.
Rhade: You're short, and you throw like a girl.
Harper: Yes. Thank you.
|Aired:||February 18, 2005|
|Writer By:||John Kirk|
|Directed By:||Peter DeLuise|
|Created By:||Gene Roddenberry|
|Developed By:||Robert Hewitt Wolfe|
|Executive Producers:||Majel Roddenberry|
Josanne B. Lovick
|Production Designer||Brian Kane|
|Intro||The Universe is a dangerous place. But in our future my crew and I fight to make it safe. I am Dylan Hunt, Captain of the Andromeda Ascendant, and these are our adventures.|