Assassin
Original Airdate: November 9, 1981

[Scorpio in flight]

[Flight deck]

AVON: I don't know what this is about, Vila, but for your sake I hope it is important.
VILA: It's important, all right. ...You all quite comfortable?
AVON: Vila!
VILA [OC]: Then, ladies and gentlemen, for your edification and delight, the voice you all know and love...
AVON: Vila!
SERVALAN: (on recorder) Utilizer to Cancer, Utilizer to Cancer. Domo the ninth, five subjects.
AVON: ...Servalan!
SOOLIN: Are you sure?
VILA: I called you at once.
TARRANT: Well now you've had your moment of glory, do you think we could hear what the lady has to say?
VILA: Oh, right.
SERVALAN: Utilizer to Cancer, Utilizer to Cancer. Domo the ninth, five subjects. Utilizer to Cancer, Utilizer to Cancer. Domo the ninth, five subjects. Utilizer to Cancer...
TARRANT: Is that it?
VILA: That's it, just the same message over and over again.
DAYNA: Well it doesn't mean anything. Utilizer, Cancer, five subjects, ...it's gibberish.
TARRANT: Domo the ninth?
VILA: Son of Domo the Eighth, presumably.
DAYNA: The ninth must be a date.
SOOLIN: Domo is a planet.
TARRANT: I can't say I've ever heard of it.
SOOLIN: It's a hostile planet near the edge of the sixth quadrant. About ten years ago it was colonised by a group of space pirates. They use it as a base to attack any undefended ships, loot them and auction the passengers off as slaves.
VILA: Auction! You're joking.
DAYNA: All right, so Domo is a planet, the ninth is a date, but who or what is Cancer?
SOOLIN: I don't know.
TARRANT: He knows, though, (to Avon) don't you? You know about Cancer.
AVON: Yes, I know about him.
TARRANT: So who is he?
AVON: I've no idea. No, I mean it. I don't know who he is, how old he is, what he looks like, or where he comes from, but I do know what he does.
TARRANT: And what's that?
AVON: He kills people ...for a great deal of money!

[Servalan's ship in space]

[Servalan's ship bridge]

SERVALAN: The communications net is functioning perfectly. All right, Captain, we can get under way now.
CAPTAIN: Back to headquarters, Commissioner?
SERVALAN: No. I want you to lay in a course for the planet Domo.
CAPTAIN: That's not a very healthy place to visit, ma'am.
SERVALAN: ...I have a robust constitution, Captain.

[Flight deck]

DAYNA: A hired assassin with Servalan as his utilizer. ...Why?
AVON: I don't want to seem paranoid, but the tape said five subjects. You may use your fingers, if you like, Vila.
DAYNA: Well I suppose it makes sense. Why break her neck chasing us around the galaxy when she can pay a professional to do it for her?
TARRANT: Yes, but so what? Why should he find us any easier than she can? ...(to Avon) He's good, is he, this Cancer?
AVON: You can imagine how much it hurts me to use the word infallible.
TARRANT: Oh, come on. Nobody's infallible.
AVON: All right, then he's not infallible. It's just that up to now, he has never failed.
TARRANT: Do you know, I really think you're frightened.
AVON: ...Orac, have you been listening to all this?
ORAC: With interest.
AVON: What do you think?
ORAC: I think you're quite right. A degree of apprehension is not inappropriate.
TARRANT: He means what do you think we should do?
ORAC: I would have thought that was self-evident. You must find this Cancer before he finds you.
AVON: That's a splendid theory. Have you any idea how we should set about putting it into practice?
ORAC: You have a time and a place.
SOOLIN: Domo. ...The ninth.

[Scorpio in flight]

[Flight deck]

SOOLIN: Avon, if no one has ever seen this man's face, how will we know him?
AVON: Perhaps we won't have to. If we're right and Servalan is going to be on Domo to give him our names and some form of down payment, perhaps we can handle this some other way.
SOOLIN: What other way?
AVON: Servalan ...has lived altogether too long. Cancer is a professional. With his pay mistress dead, he will pack up his toys and go home.

[Scorpio approaching Domo]

[Domo surface]

(Vila and Avon teleport into an area of sand dunes and sand pits with light scrub. From the top of a ridge they see a group of pirates. Two are arguing over the result of a game)
AVON: Come on!
BENOS: Look, when I say I win, I win. Right?
(he knocks his opponent down and kicks him when he tries to get up)
VILA: Friendly looking lot aren't they?
(Avon hands Vila his gun)
VILA: Sure you can manage them on your own?
AVON: Perhaps you'd better come with me.
VILA: Oh ...well, if you like ...but it's bad luck to change your plans, you know. ...I mean, once you've started.
AVON: My hero. ...Just keep your head down and try not to panic. ...All right?
VILA: Good luck!
(Avon approaches the pirates)
BENOS: Well, well, well. What's this, a mirage?
AVON: Thank goodness! I'm so glad to see you. My space shuttle crash-landed back there. All my friends were killed. I've been walking all day. I wonder, can you please help me?
BENOS: Well, ...what sort of help were you thinking of?
AVON: Well, ...you know, ...food, ...water.
BENOS: Well, I think we can manage that, don't you lads? Food, water, nice dry sleeping quarters.
AVON: Thank you.
(in the background a double-file of sparsely-clad and more formally-clad people are escorted along by two pirates)
AVON [OC]: It'll just be for tonight.
BENOS: Oh no, no, no, this'll be board and lodging for a lifetime.
AVON: I'm sorry, I don't understand.
BENOS: He talks very pretty, doesn't he, lads? That should be worth another thirty vems. Mind you, you're a bit skinny though, aren't you? ...I said, you're a bit on the skinny side, aren't you?
(as Benos tries to get hold of him, Avon knocks him down and then floors another pirate)
VILA: Avon, don't make too good a job of it or we'll never get anywhere.
(Avon makes an escape pursued by the group. He is tackled from the side by another pirate. He kicks one of the group over his head before being engulfed by the rest. Vila slips away)
BENOS: So ...you're a fighter as well as a talker, are you? You'll probably fetch the best price of the day. Take him away lads.
(as Avon is escorted away Benos calls out)
BENOS: Hey, just a minute,...
(he picks Avon's bracelet up which has come off in the final struggle and puts it on)
BENOS: ...what's this then, eh?
AVON: It's nothing, it's of no value.
BENOS: Oh really? Then you won't be needing it, will you? ...It suits me, don't you think so? ...Right, take him to the cells.

[Flight deck]

DAYNA: Tarrant, come here.
TARRANT: What is it?
(the viewscreen shows a black ship leaving Domo)
DAYNA: What d'you think?
TARRANT: Hard to tell. Could be a pirate, could be anything.
DAYNA: Well, if it was a pirate, I'd have thought he would...
VILA: (on communicator) Tarrant, come in Tarrant.
TARRANT: (into communicator) About time. Vila, what's happening?
VILA: Mission accomplished.
TARRANT: Any sign of Servalan.
VILA: Look, just get me up will you? It's a bit uncivilised down here.
TARRANT: All right. Stop quivering.
(Vila teleports in)
SOOLIN: So it all went according to plan, did it?
VILA: Oh yes, wonderful. First they beat him to a pulp, and now they've dragged him off.
TARRANT: It was his idea.
SOOLIN: He'll be all right. He's got his bracelet, he can get away any time.
DAYNA: Ah ...they did leave the bracelet on him, Vila?
VILA: Er ...yes, of course they did ...I think.

[Cell]

(there is an old man already there as Avon is thrown in)
NEBROX: Are you all right?
AVON: Well I have been better. ...For one thing, the accommodation leaves a lot to be desired.
NEBROX: Well, one consolation for you, you won't be here long. The auction... They only hold them once every three months. You've arrived on the very day.
AVON: Well, I suppose you could call that a consolation.
NEBROX: And another thing. A fine, well-set-up young fellow like you, you won't have any trouble in finding a buyer. ...Whereas an old wreck like me, with no special skills...
AVON: I shouldn't think that bothers you too much.
NEBROX: Yes, but they only... They only put you up twice. Then they decide you're not worth your keep, and...
(he draws his hand across his throat)
NEBROX: ...This... This will be my second time.
AVON: Oh ...I'm sorry. I wish you luck.
NEBROX: Thank you. My name is Nebrox, by the way.
AVON: Tell me, ...Nebrox, have you noticed any unusual activity on this planet during the last twenty-four hours?
NEBROX: Why?!
AVON: Idle curiosity.
NEBROX: I thought so! You're no ordinary prisoner. I knew it the moment you came in. What are you up to? ...You can tell me, I'm not an informer. I swear it. Have... Have you got a way of getting out of here?
AVON: Well I did have, until some lout took a fancy to it.
NEBROX: Which lout?
AVON: A charmer called Benos. Do you know him?
NEBROX: Oh yes.
AVON: He took a bracelet of mine. ...Without it, I'm as stuck here as you are.
NEBROX: Maybe... Maybe I could get it back for you.
AVON: How?
NEBROX: If I do, you've got to take me with you.
AVON: I'll think about that.
NEBROX: No, I mean it, you've got to promise.
AVON: All right, ...I promise.
(Nebrox hears footsteps)
NEBROX: Sh.

[Slave market]

SERVALAN: It doesn't look as though you've attracted many customers for this particular sale, though.
VERLIS: Oh my dear, every one of those men is an agent for at least fifty potential clients. Ha, ha, ha. ...They inspect the merchandise...
(there are a number of well-dressed agents sitting side-by-side drinking)
VERLIS [OC]: ...and then report back to the client. The client prefers it that way. He can sit safely and snugly at home and enjoy all the excitement of doing something illegal without taking any of the risks.
SERVALAN [OC]: You mean ...they put in their bids by communicator?
VERLIS: Yes, sometimes the agents nearly have a stroke trying to keep track of the bids. Ha, ha, ha. You watch them, especially when it comes to the entertainers. The nouveau riche, my dear, they nearly fall over themselves bidding for them. Ha, ha, ha. Nothing they like more than to impress their noble friends by having tame singers and dancers on tap.
SERVALAN/VERLIS: Ha, ha, ha.
SERVALAN: You're obviously fulfilling a deeply felt need, Verlis.
VERLIS: Oh, yes, I am, yes I am. I ...am a public servant. Ha, ha, ha. You didn't do so badly, you know. With a specimen like yours, you got a bargain.
SERVALAN: It was a fair price.

[Cell]

(Avon is poking the contents of a food bowl with a spoon)
AVON: What is this exactly?
(Nebrox is eating from his bowl)
NEBROX: It's mangon. It's a sort of stew made from fungus. It takes some getting used to, ...but it's really very nourishing. ...If you ...don't want it, I...
AVON: Oh you have it. ...Eat it and good health. You were going to tell me about any unusual activity you'd noticed during the last few days.
NEBROX: Yes, well, ...yesterday morning when we were out exercising, a ship arrived. Federation, it looked like, but it couldn't have been, could it? Seemed to be a woman in charge.
AVON: What was she like, ...the woman?
NEBROX: Well, I didn't really get much of a look at her. She was tall, dark, obviously ...important and powerful. Why? Do you know her?
AVON: Oh, yes. I think we may have met.
NEBROX: Well then, this morning, another ship arrived, a black ship, but nobody got out of it, ...and no one was allowed near it, ...except this woman. She went on board, stayed for about ...an hour, and then she came back here, went into one of the slave huts, and she made a purchase.
AVON: What?
NEBROX: Yes. You see, a party of travelling entertainers was brought in about two months ago. She bought one and they went back to the ship.
AVON: Why would she do that?
NEBROX: I don't know. I don't even know which one it was. I only know that she took one of them back to the black ship and then she came back here alone.
AVON: What about the ship. Is it still there?
NEBROX: Er, no. No, it took off just before you came in. Mm, ...I saw it from the window.
AVON: That's wonderful.
(there are footsteps outside)
NEBROX: They're coming to get us. ...The auction is starting.
AVON: Whatever your plan is to get my bracelet back, now might be a good time to put it into practice.
NEBROX: Mm?
AVON: You haven't got a plan, have you?
(he takes Nebrox by the throat)
AVON: ...Or perhaps you have.
NEBROX: I'll think of something, ...I promise. ...You can ...trust me, ...really you can.

[Slave market]

(Servalan and Verlis are eating and drinking together)
BENOS [OC]: Go on, move. Move!
SERVALAN: Verlis!
BENOS [OC]: Move!
SERVALAN: That man.
BENOS [OC]: Stand there!
(Benos indicates to Avon)
VERLIS [OC]: Which man?
(Benos takes off Avon's manacles)
SERVALAN [OC]: The young one. ...I want him.
VERLIS: I'm sorry, Commissioner. I can break the rules in private, but not in public.
SERVALAN: I want him! You can name your price.
VERLIS: You'll have to bid for him like anyone else.
BENOS: One moment, gentlemen. A late addition. Perhaps you'd like to send back a few details to your clients, ...especially the ladies. Now I know he looks soft, and he talks soft, too, but you can tell the ladies he's strong enough to work all day and still have plenty of energy left over for any little chores you might have for him in the evenings. ...Now, what am I bid?
TOK: Valeria of Prim bids a hundred vems.
BENOS: One hundred! That's very good, but you're going to have to do better than that. Any advance?
TOK: Natratof of Gourimpest bids a hundred and fifty.
BENOS: A hundred and fifty.
TOK: Valeria bids two hundred.
BENOS: Two hundred!
TOK: Natratof bids two hundred and fifty.
BENOS: Two hundred and fifty. Any advance on two-fifty? ...Three hundred! ...Three-fifty! ...Four hundred! ...Four-fifty!
TOK: Natratof bids five hundred.
BENOS: Five hundred? He's worth all that for his lovely manners alone. Now will anybody bid me more than five hundred?
SERVALAN: I will ...I bid seven hundred vems.
NEBROX: You don't want him Lady! Take me.
(runs forward and kneels in front of Servalan)
NEBROX: Take me, Lady. I'm strong, I won't let you down.
BENOS: Silly old fool.
NEBROX: Oh no, take me please. Please, you must, ...you must.
(Benos pulls Nebrox to his feet)
BENOS: What are you babbling about?
(he pushes Nebrox away. Nebrox shows Avon the bracelet)
BENOS: I'm sorry about that interruption, gentlemen. Now Madam, where were we?
SERVALAN: I bid seven hundred vems.
BENOS: Seven hundred vems, that's right. Now, any advance on seven hundred?
TOK: Natratof bids eight hundred vems.
SERVALAN: Nine hundred.
TOK: One thousand.
SERVALAN: Two thousand.
BENOS: Two thousand vems. It's with you, Agent Tok. Well?
TOK: No further bid, but my client wishes to protest at the irregularity of these proceedings.

[Flight deck]

AVON: (on communicator) Scorpio, come in Scorpio.
TARRANT: (into communicator) Avon, what's happening?
AVON: Never mind what's happening. Just get me up as quickly as you can.

[Slave market]

NEBROX: You promised! ...You promised!

[Flight deck]

AVON: (on communicator) Cancel that. Someone get down here with a spare gun and an extra bracelet.
TARRANT: (into communicator) Damn it, Avon, make up your mind.
DAYNA: I'll go.

[Slave market]

BENOS: Hey, what are you two up to?
(as Benos rushes him, Avon throws him past and floors another pirate)
AVON: (into bracelet) Now might be a good time. (to Nebrox) All right, come on, if you're coming.
(Avon is quickly overpowered by two pirates. Other slaves make their escape in the confusion)
SERVALAN: Avon.
(Avon is held on his knees before her)
AVON: Servalan.
SERVALAN: I think, ...if you don't mind, I would prefer my slave to address me as 'Mistress'.
(Dayna teleports down, gun in hand, and aims at the pirates who back away from Avon. She spots Servalan)
DAYNA: You!!
(as she aims at Servalan she is attacked by a pirate who she knocks over the head with the gun)
DAYNA: Avon! Here.
(she tosses Avon the gun and a bracelet and draws her own gun, Benos charges her and kicks her gun from her hand)
AVON: Benos.
(Benos turns and Avon shoots him. Dayna retrieves her gun and they join Nebrox. Avon gives Nebrox the bracelet)
AVON: Put this on. Quickly!
DAYNA: (into bracelet) Take us up. Now!.
(Verlis drops her drink in astonishment)

[Flight deck]

DAYNA: I almost had her! ... I almost had her!!
AVON: Almost is never good enough.
TARRANT: Servalan?
DAYNA: Servalan.
SOOLIN: But what about Cancer?
AVON: Cancer came and went, in a black ship.
TARRANT: We saw it.
AVON: You saw it? ...When?
TARRANT: Not long ago. A black ship lifted out of orbit.
AVON: Do you think you can plot its exact course?
SOOLIN: Avon, there's no possible reason to assume he'd still be holding that course.
AVON: No, but we can try a sweep in the general area. That is, unless someone has a better suggestion.
VILA: You want to introduce us to your friend?
(he indicates Nebrox)

[Flight deck]

(sometime later)
DAYNA: Avon, look at that.
(there is stationary ship on the viewscreen)
AVON [OC]: Close scan. What's he playing at?
(there is crab motif on the tail of the ship)
VILA [OC]: Who cares. I never was much for games.
TARRANT [OC]: Do you think it's a trap?
AVON: Probably. But it's just possible that he's having trouble with his power systems, in which case, ...to coin a phrase, ...'he is at our mercy'.

[Cancer's ship in space]

[Cancer's ship corridor]

TARRANT: So far, so good.
(they move through the corridor)
TARRANT: Emergency lighting. Maybe the main systems are out.
AVON: Maybe you ought to send in your visiting card.
TARRANT: Well, if it's a trap, he knows we're here. What should we do? Split up?
AVON: No. Let's cover each other every step of the way.
(they reach a door which opens)

[Cancer's ship flight deck]

(there is a dummy dressed in black seated at the controls. Cancer is standing in a corner and Piri, with her thumb in her mouth, is standing against the wall further round)

[Cancer's ship corridor]

AVON: Well, we have to start somewhere.

[Cancer's ship flight deck]

(Avon and Tarrant rush in and blast the dummy. Cancer steps forward with a gun on them)
CANCER: Gentlemen, please put down your weapons.
(they comply)
CANCER: It's a pleasure to welcome you aboard my ship. Please remain perfectly still.
AVON: Only a man.
CANCER: I'm sure you're as disappointed with your performance as I am, Avon.
AVON: Well, I've learned to live with disappointment.
CANCER: Never mind, ...you won't have to live with it any longer.
(as he moves towards them, Piri chops down on his wrists and he drops the gun. He lifts her up and tosses her aside)
AVON: Don't worry, I'll cover you.
(Tarrant charges Cancer and Avon picks up a gun. Tarrant cannot cope with Cancer's strength. Piri watches in horror. Avon only intervenes when Cancer is on his back having kicked Tarrant away)
AVON: As I was saying, we all have to learn to live with disappointment!

[Flight deck]

(Nebrox, regally robed, is on a recliner drinking)
NEBROX: I do hope they're all right.
AVON: (on communicator) Cancer to Scorpio, Cancer to Scorpio. Are you there, Vila?
VILA: (into communicator) Where else would I be?
DAYNA: (into communicator) Are you all right?
AVON: Fine. We're both fine. I think our friend Cancer has a bit of a headache, ...though.
VILA: You've got him!
NEBROX: Oh, he really is so very clever.
PIRI: (on communicator) Ahrgh, Ahrgh.
SOOLIN: (into communicator) Avon, what is that terrible noise?

[Cancer's ship flight deck]

AVON: (into communicator) It's a little difficult to explain. Perhaps you'd better come and see for yourself.
(Tarrant is holding Piri by the shoulders, comforting her)
PIRI: I'm sorry. I'll be all right in a minute. You must think me very silly.
TARRANT: Anyone's entitled to a few tears after what you've been through.
PIRI: I just ...didn't know what to do.
TARRANT: Listen, you saved both our lives.
AVON: And we're very grateful. Now if you could answer a few questions...
TARRANT: Leave her alone for a minute.
PIRI: No, it's all right, ...really. What is it that you want to know?
AVON: Anything you can tell us ...about him.
PIRI: But I never saw him before today. This woman came and bought me from the slave compound and gave me to him. He said... He said that he wanted me to help him to celebrate after he'd finished a job that he had to do.
AVON: That's all he said?
PIRI: Yes. That's what frightened me more than anything. Ever since we left Domo, he hasn't said a single word to me, just stared at me ...sometimes. Except when a message came through from that woman, then he said `So the prey has come looking for the hunter. How Interesting'. He stopped the ship and waited for you.
AVON: Did he say anything about meeting the woman again, for payment after the job was finished?
PIRI: No, nothing at all. I... I'm sorry I can't be of more help to you.
TARRANT: Look, do you think she could have a rest now?
AVON: I don't see why not.
(Vila, Soolin, and Nebrox teleport in)
SOOLIN: You have been busy.
TARRANT: Ah, ...this is...
PIRI: Piri.
TARRANT: (to Soolin) This is Piri. (to Piri) This is Soolin.
PIRI: Oh, hello.
SOOLIN: Hello.
TARRANT: Ah yes, and the gentleman with the cough ...is Vila.
PIRI: Hello Vila.
VILA: Nice to meet you.
NEBROX: And I'm Nebrox.
PIRI: Hello.
SOOLIN: And this, presumably, is Cancer.
VILA: Doesn't look so terrifying, does he?
SOOLIN: So what are we going to do with him?
AVON: What do you think?
VILA: You're going to kill an unarmed prisoner?
SOOLIN: When did you get religion?
VILA: I'm a thief, not a butcher!
AVON: Just at the moment, we need him alive, for purely rational considerations. (to Cancer) Presumably, ...you have some sort of arrangement with Sleer, for reporting mission accomplished. ...A signal perhaps, ...or the time and place for a rendezvous. ...You wouldn't care to share that information ...with us?
CANCER: I've never killed for personal pleasure before, but in your case I shall make an exception!
(Piri cries out and rushes into Nebrox's arms)
AVON: All right, this is what we'll do. Tarrant, Soolin, and I will stay here to wait for a message from ...Sleer, ...or the lady in person. Vila, you return to Scorpio and Dayna, ...take Piri with you.
PIRI: Oh, can't I stay here? I just feel much safer somehow.
SOOLIN: What? After our friend's little goodwill message?
TARRANT: I'll lock him in the hold and check his ropes personally. She'll be quite safe.

[Flight deck]

(Dayna is listening)
AVON: (on communicator) I'm setting a trap, not holding a convention for liberated slaves.

[Cancer's ship flight deck]

AVON: You could be in my way, Nebrox. On the other hand, ...you could be useful.
NEBROX: Thank you Avon. If I stay with you, after you've done what you want, couldn't you possibly take me home? I... I don't want to appear ungrateful. I know ...you already repaid me for saving your life. ...Amply ...repaid me.

[Scorpio leaving Cancer's ship in space]

[Cancer's ship flight deck]

TARRANT: Have you always been an entertainer?
PIRI: Ever since I was a child. My mother was a dancer. My father was manager for the troupe.
TARRANT: Are you a good dancer?
PIRI: Oh, ...I don't know. ...Well, I suppose I must be to have lasted so long in the business. It's very competitive, you know.
TARRANT: Oh I can imagine.
SOOLIN: (to Avon) Our little friend seems to be making a big impression on Tarrant.
PIRI: Your friend's very clever, isn't he?
TARRANT: Who, Avon?
PIRI: Yes. ...Isn't he? Well, you all seem to do what he says.
TARRANT: Oh, no, we don't. I mean, ...if we think he's right, we go along with it, if we don't, we don't. We're all free agents.
PIRI: Oh. ...I don't really like clever people anyway. They frighten me rather. Like... Like that other one.
TARRANT: Look, do you want me to go and take a look at him?
PIRI: I'm really stupid, aren't I?
TARRANT: No, of course not, but you must promise to wait here until I get back.
PIRI: Oh I won't move. Promise.

[Cancer's ship hold]

(Cancer is tied up with thick ropes)
CANCER: Don't worry, I haven't flown away.
TARRANT: I just wanted to be sure you were comfortable.
CANCER: Quite comfortable, thank you, ...for the moment.
TARRANT: Be sure to let us know if there's anything you want.
CANCER: You could give that little bitch a message for me. You can tell her I'll be saving her to the last.
(Tarrant leaves)

[Cancer's ship flight deck]

AVON: Come on, woman, come on!
TARRANT: This is crazy. You don't know when she'll get in touch, you don't know what arrangements they made.
AVON: You would prefer trying to beat it out of Cancer, I presume?
TARRANT: It's better than sitting around waiting for something that may never happen.
AVON: Cancer is not a fool. He knows that once he talks, we will have no further use for him. Whatever you do, I imagine he would find it preferable to suicide.
NEBROX: By the way, what's become of our little friend?
SOOLIN: She's found Cancer's cabin and made herself cosy for the duration.
NEBROX: Ah.
SOOLIN: Why? Do you fancy a little chat about the good old days on the chain gang?
NEBROX: Oh it's terrible to think of a poor little thing like that being a slave, don't you think?
SOOLIN: No more terrible than to think of you as one.
NEBROX: Oh no, no, I'm an old man. She's merely a helpless little child.
SOOLIN: Well, ...I expect a little suffering will have helped to make her a better artist.

[Cancer's ship cabin]

NEBROX: Oh there you are.
PIRI: Hello.
NEBROX: You're looking a bit bored.
PIRI: Yes, I am rather. ...How long do you think we're going to have to hang about like this?
NEBROX: Well, that's hard to say. Until this woman turns up, I suppose, or until they get tired of waiting.
PIRI: Who is this wretched woman anyway?
NEBROX: Well, I don't know really. I only saw her once, on Domo. She looked rather formidable.
PIRI: Is she attractive?
NEBROX: Attractive? Well, yes, yes, in a hard sort of way. ...Now look, we must think of it this way. At least we're safe, and it's better than sitting around waiting for them to bring in the mangon. ...Don't you think?
PIRI: What? ...Oh, yes, I suppose so.
NEBROX: Huh.
PIRI: I'm sorry, I just can't stop thinking about that awful man at the end of the corridor.
NEBROX: Everything is going to be all right. We're all here to look after you. ...Would you... Would you like me to go and take a look at him?
PIRI: Oh, would you? That would be awfully sweet of you.
NEBROX: Anything to bring the colour back to those pretty cheeks.

[Cancer's ship hold]

(Nebrox looks through the window in the door. The ropes hang empty. He goes in. A shadow looms)
NEBROX: Ahrgh. Ahrgh!

[Cancer's ship flight deck]

AVON: I can outwait Servalan any day. And I'm prepared to do it now.
(Piri rushes in, crying uncontrollably)
TARRANT: Piri, what is it? What is it? ...What's happened?
PIRI: The hold! ...In the hold!
AVON: Let's go.
(Avon and Soolin run out. Cancer is concealing himself somewhere on the ship)

[Cancer's ship hold]

(Nebrox is laying on the floor)
SOOLIN: He's dead, I take it?
AVON: Oh he's dead all right. Question is, how did he die?
SOOLIN: I should imagine friend Cancer would be a master of unarmed combat. Few seconds pressure at a vital point.
AVON: Possibly. What do you make of this?
SOOLIN: What?
AVON: A red patch on his hand. Hardly a vital point.
SOOLIN: What does it matter how the poor old man died? The question is `Where the hell is Cancer?'.
AVON: Well we know where he isn't. He isn't on the flight deck, he isn't in his cabin and he isn't in here.
SOOLIN: Shall we search the rest of the ship?
AVON: Oh I imagine he would just love that, wouldn't you?

[Cancer's ship corridor]

(Cancer moves cautiously along it)

[Cancer's ship flight deck]

AVON: It seems we underestimated Cancer. Somehow he managed to get free.
(Tarrant has his arm around Piri)
TARRANT: I tied those ropes myself.
AVON: Nevertheless. And Nebrox opened the door.
TARRANT: Nebrox couldn't have opened the door. There's only one key and I've got it!
AVON: So Cancer is a magician into the bargain. The point is that he's loose somewhere on this ship, ...his ship, and we haven't the vaguest idea how to set about looking for him.
TARRANT: So how do you suggest we go about it?
AVON: ...I suggest we don't even try. I suggest we barricade ourselves in here and fly this ship back to our base. Once we are safely disembarked, Cancer can give himself up or he can or starve, whichever suits him best.
TARRANT: That's the nearest thing you've had to a good idea since this business started.
AVON: Well let's put it into practice, shall we?
TARRANT: (to Piri) Come on. ... Just relax, everything's going to be all right.
(Tarrant moves Piri to a chair by the wall)
SOOLIN: I've double-locked the hatch. He'd have to be a magician to get in now.
(Tarrant and Soolin join Avon sitting at the controls)
AVON: Check sequence.
TARRANT: Ready.
AVON: Main power feed one and two.
TARRANT: Check ...nothing.
AVON: Again.
TARRANT: Nothing. There's no response at all.
AVON: Try the auxiliaries.
TARRANT: Nothing there either.
SOOLIN: But there must be. The life support systems are working perfectly.
TARRANT: There's no response from any of the flight systems.
AVON: Like I said ...'This is his ship'.
TARRANT: We've got to get the others back. ...The communicator's dead. It's stone dead.
SOOLIN: I wish you could have found a less vivid way of putting that.
PIRI: He's going to kill us! He's going to kill all of us!
SOOLIN: Oh stop it!
PIRI: You heard what he said, you saw the way he looked at me. He's going to kill all of you, one by one, and then come for me!
(Soolin slaps Piri's face)
TARRANT: You enjoyed that, didn't you?
SOOLIN: There are two classic ways of dealing with an hysterical woman. You didn't really expect me to kiss her, did you?
TARRANT: Of course, you know what this is about, don't you? It's simple female jealousy.
SOOLIN: Oh, terrific. If two men don't like each other that's a rational judgement. If it's two women what else could it be but jealousy?!
TARRANT: If you could see the way you're behaving.
PIRI: No, she's right, I deserved it. I'm sorry, sorry for being so silly. It won't happen again, I promise.
TARRANT: Right, that's it.
AVON: What does that mean?
TARRANT: If I'm going to die, I'd rather do it with a gun in my hand than sit around here shivering like an old woman.
AVON: Don't be a fool, that's exactly what he wants.
TARRANT: After the hash you've made of this business, you're in no position to call anyone a fool. ...Anyway, if that's what he wants, let him have it.
AVON: All right, you've made your impression. You can sit down now.
TARRANT: What does that mean?
AVON: She knows that you are very brave. Now sit down.
TARRANT: Avon, you're beginning to get on my nerves!
AVON: Oh really?
TARRANT: You botched this mission from the start.
AVON: You would have handled it differently.
TARRANT: Well, it certainly doesn't speak highly of your much-vaunted brains.
AVON: Nevertheless, your little friend seems to prefer them to your equally vaunted brawn.
TARRANT: What was that supposed to mean?
AVON: Nothing.
TARRANT: I said what did you mean?
AVON: I meant nothing. Now sit down and stop behaving like a fool.
TARRANT: Avon, you're pushing your luck.
SOOLIN: Stop it, you two. You're playing into Cancer's hands. He wants to split us up.
PIRI: Don't fight over me, please!
AVON: (to Piri) Just you remember, you're only a passenger on this ship! Your unnecessary emotion only clouds the issue!
SOOLIN: Avon! Tarrant!
AVON: What is it?
SOOLIN: See for yourself ...He's shut down life support.
PIRI: Oh! Oh!
(the emergency red lighting comes on)

[Cancer's ship in space]

[Cancer's ship hold]

(Piri kneels by Nebrox's body)
AVON: Presumably, wherever he is, he has some kind of breathing apparatus.
SOOLIN: How long can we last on the air we have now?
TARRANT: Not more than two hours. That means we have two hours to find him and undo whatever it is that he has done.
AVON: It looks as if you are going to get your way after all. (to Piri) You stay here.
PIRI: Don't... Don't leave me alone, please.
TARRANT: She's right, we can't leave her here. What if he doubles round behind us?
SOOLIN: We can't cart her around with us. That would reduce our chances of survival to nil.
TARRANT: So why don't you stay with her?
AVON: And reduce our chances of finding Cancer by a third. Out of the question.
SOOLIN: Why don't we lock her in here?
TARRANT: He got out of the hold. He can get into it.
SOOLIN: Then just hope we can get to him before he gets to her. It's our only chance.
PIRI: Oh no, please.
AVON: She's right, it's the only way. Let's go.
PIRI: (to Soolin) Oh no, no. I know you don't like me, but please don't leave me alone.
SOOLIN: Look, you'll be perfectly all right, it's a self-locking door and I've got the key.
PIRI: Soolin please, ...don't leave me with him. I can't bear to look at him.
SOOLIN: Let's go. You can be sure he won't hurt you.
(Soolin leaves)
PIRI: Soolin! Please, please!

[Cancer's ship corridor]

SOOLIN: She'll be all right.
TARRANT: She'd better be.
SOOLIN: Well, do we stick together, or what?
AVON: Given the time factor, it might be better if we split up.

[Cancer's ship hold]

PIRI: Don't leave me. ...Please, don't leave me.
(Avon, Tarrant, Soolin Cancer prowl the ship)

[Cancer's ship store]

(Soolin comes in)
SOOLIN: This is ridiculous. I must think.
(she holsters her gun and sits on a packing case. A black-gloved hand puts a tarantula-like spider onto the floor. It moves forward. Elsewhere Avon has a hand put on his shoulder. Soolin is now sitting down with her hand on the floor. As the spider approaches her hand she leaps up)
SOOLIN: Of course! That's it!

[Cancer's ship corridor]

SOOLIN: Tarrant!
TARRANT: What d'you think you're playing at. I might have blown your head off.
SOOLIN: Come on, let's get to the hold.
TARRANT: Why?
SOOLIN: Come on, quickly.

[Cancer's ship hold]

(the hold is empty)
TARRANT: Well, I hope you're satisfied.
SOOLIN: I'm satisfied.
TARRANT: If anything's happened to her ...I thought we'd decided he couldn't walk through walls.
SOOLIN: The door appears to be open.
TARRANT: Yes, and you've got the key.
SOOLIN: I had the key. I haven't got it anymore.

[Cancer's ship flight deck]

(Avon is strapped to a couch. He comes and sees Cancer staring rigidly ahead. Piri is now dressed in black, looking very severe)
PIRI: You're quite right, he's completely dead. ...I killed him. ...Pity, in a way. He was a fairly impressive specimen.
AVON: You ...killed Cancer?
PIRI: Oh Avon! And you are supposed to be the clever one. I am ...Cancer.

[Cancer's ship hold]

SOOLIN: She took the key away from me when she was begging me not to leave her with Nebrox.
TARRANT: I don't believe it.
SOOLIN: In much the same way I imagine that she got it from you earlier. And when she'd done what she had to do, she put the key back in your pocket, when you were comforting her after she found the body.
TARRANT: I don't. But then who is Cancer?

[Cancer's ship flight deck]

PIRI: An actor, a professional ...entertainer. Purchased for me on Domo by our mutual friend ...Sleer. I thought he put up rather a convincing performance, didn't you?
AVON: I'm glad to see that you suitably rewarded him.
PIRI: He really believed that we were going off together when it was all finished. He was getting to be a nuisance, so I simply ...cleared him out of the way a little earlier than I'd intended.
AVON: How very tidy-minded of you. What about Nebrox, was he a nuisance too?
PIRI: He was becoming one.
AVON: Why didn't you let our 'friend' finish off Tarrant and me when we first came aboard this ship?
PIRI: Oh no, that would never have done. My contract was for all five of you. I had to get you to ...trust me so that you'd take me back to your base, and I could simply ...pick you off one by one. Besides, that would have spoilt our fun.
AVON: Our fun?
PIRI: Oh yes. (into communicator) Utilizer, are you hearing all this?
SERVALAN: (on communicator) Every word. I only wish I could see you as well.

[Servalan's ship in space]

SERVALAN [OC]: (on communicator) Congratulations Cancer, you're a credit to our sex.

[Cancer's ship flight deck]

PIRI: (into communicator) Would you like to have a few words with our friend, before he goes?
SERVALAN: (on communicator) Oh yes. I couldn't let him go without saying goodbye. ...Avon. You're not sulking, I hope.
AVON: (into communicator) Mm. I'm full of admiration for your brilliance. This was all a set-up from the beginning, I take it.

[Servalan's ship bridge]

SERVALAN: (into communicator) Oh, yes, ...and you cooperated beautifully. Incidentally, the whole ship is bugged. ...It has been fun listening to all your little plans and squabbles. But I'm surprised at you, Avon. I would have thought you were the last person to be taken in by a pretty face.

[Cancer's ship flight deck]

AVON: (into communicator) I take it this ship is under your control as well.
SERVALAN: (on communicator) Oh, yes. How else could life support have been cut off when Cancer was with you all the time?

[Servalan's ship bridge]

SERVALAN: (into communicator) And of course I can control the flight systems and communications. ...Well, ...I'd love to stay chatting with you, as you can imagine, but I must let Cancer get on with her business.

[Cancer's ship flight deck]

PIRI: You're too clever, Avon, you and Soolin. With the pair of you gone, dear sweet Tarrant will escort me back to base and I shall simply pick up where I left off.
AVON: With the pair of us gone?
PIRI: Oh yes, I should imagine that blonde bitch is probably dead already. ...In fact, ...I'm sure of it.
(she looks down as the spider transforms back into the crab-shaped brooch she had been wearing on her original dress)
PIRI: Pretty, isn't it? I am disappointed in you, Avon. Cancer, the sign of the crab.
(she puts on the brooch)
PIRI: It's been staring you in the face right from the very beginning. Fortunately, it has an inexhaustible supply ...of venom. Him, Nebrox, Soolin, and still more than enough left over for you.
(she puts the brooch on Avon's chest and it transforms into the spider)
PIRI: Oh I wish that I could tell you that it's a painless death, but I'm afraid it's very much the reverse. On the other hand, I can assure you that it's quick. A pity Avon. I was looking forward to a real duel between the two of us, ...but a man's ...just a man, when all's said and done. ...Goodbye Avon.
(Tarrant and Soolin rush in)
TARRANT: Hold it!
(as Piri turns towards Tarrant, Soolin rushes to Avon and flicks the spider off with her gun. It lands on Piri's arm and bites her)
PIRI: Ahrgh...
(as she dies Tarrant destroys the spider with his gun)
SERVALAN: (on communicator) Cancer? ...Are you there? ...Cancer, what's happening?
AVON: (into communicator) I'm sorry, Servalan, but I'm afraid your friend is feeling the pinch.

[Servalan's ship bridge]

SERVALAN: (into communicator) Avon.
AVON: (on communicator) She just had a fatal argument with her own little pet. Better luck next time.
SERVALAN: I shouldn't start gloating just yet, if I were you.
AVON: You lost, ...Servalan.
SERVALAN: Captain.

[Cancer's ship flight deck]

CAPTAIN: (on communicator) Yes Commissioner?
AVON: She's left the communication channels open.
SOOLIN: (into communicator) Scorpio, Scorpio, come in Scorpio.
DAYNA: (on communicator) Yes, what is it?
AVON: (into communicator) Reverse course immediately. Come back here. ...Maximum speed.
DAYNA: (on communicator) I can hardly hear you.
VILA: (on communicator Say again Avon.

[Servalan's ship bridge]

AVON: (on communicator) Turn round and come back. The second you are in teleport range, get us out of here.
(Servalan switches off the communicator)
SERVALAN: Prime all weapons systems and get this ship moving.
CAPTAIN: Yes, Commissioner!

[Servalan's ship turning in space]

SERVALAN [OC]: (on communicator) How long will it take us to reach attack range?

[Scorpio in flight]

[Servalan's ship in flight]

CAPTAIN [OC]: (on communicator) We're at full speed, Commissioner.

[Cancer's ship flight deck]

AVON: Any signal from Scorpio?
SOOLIN: Impossible to tell. None of the long-range instruments are functioning.
TARRANT: They probably didn't hear you.
AVON: Servalan did.
SERVALAN: (on communicator) Avon, I've switched on your communicator again, ...just in case you want to say goodbye to your friends.
AVON: (into communicator) I don't think I'll bother ...just at the moment, thank you.
SERVALAN: I'm sure you'll wish you hadn't said that. You have one minute.
AVON: Well, I don't want to seem pessimistic, ...but under the circumstances...

[Servalan's ship in flight]

SERVALAN [OC]: Prepare to fire.

[Servalan's ship bridge]

CAPTAIN: On target ma'am.
SERVALAN: Fire!!

[Servalan's ship fires and destroys Cancer's ship]

[Servalan's ship bridge]

(Servalan and the Captain are sharing a drink)
SERVALAN: Well! May I congratulate you on a job well done, Captain.
CAPTAIN: You don't seem altogether happy.
SERVALAN: Oh, I'm happy enough. ...It's just that a universe without Avon and Tarrant ...will take a certain amount of getting used to.

[Flight deck]

(Dayna is handing round drinks)
DAYNA: Feeling any better now?
TARRANT: I still think you left it to the last minute on purpose.
DAYNA: Ha, ha. We weren't even sure we heard you properly.
VILA: But it seemed like a good idea to assume that we had.
AVON: It was a good idea.
DAYNA: Well, aren't you going to tell us what happened? Vila's very worried. He wants to know what became of that sweet little girl.
SOOLIN: Vila, all sweet things have one thing in common, ...a tendency to make you sick.

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