Sand
Original Airdate: November 23, 1981

[Virn flyover]

KELLER [OC]: 'I know a land beyond the heart of time. The sun never comes there. No moon ever shines, and man, a grain of sand, nameless and lost, blows with the dust.' ...I apologise, H.Q., but that's what this place makes me think of. The sun never comes here. Just sand and mist. Virn, the green planet. Never rains here either. There's something strange. Not just the way the ship was affected when we came down. Not just the way all the machinery plays up. Not just the way we're dying. You still listening, H.Q.? This is Don Keller. Remember me? On Virn, where we have a plague on our hands. ...On my hands. So when do I get something from you?

[Federation transport in flight]

[Federation transport bridge]

(Servalan is watching a monitor)
REEVE: Running the tapes again? Afraid you missed something?
SERVALAN: Perhaps I like watching old films.
REEVE: Five years old ...and mostly static and interference.
KELLER: (on monitor) ...virus which has killed almost all of my team here at the base. No fever, no real symptoms, people just die. Some slowly, some so fast you wouldn't believe. Twenty dead and another three sick. They're not gonna pull through. We don't know what it is, just that it kills. Only Gina hasn't been affected yet, Gina and myself. We don't know either why the two of us appear to be immune, ...or if we are. We can't really run tests, can we, with the computers acting up the way they have been ever since we got here. Electromagnetic disturbance or ...maybe there's just sand in the panels. Sand gets into everything...
(the picture breaks up temporarily)
KELLER: ...facts. This planet has something unique, at least that's what the machines said when they were still working. It's a trace element. I don't know what it is or what it does, but the readings showed it was something special. And it's here. Maybe it's connected to that first trace we picked up, the one that indicated there was life here, but we never ran it down. Federation can use something unique, can't it? So, ...please, ....come and get us out of this place.
(Servalan stops the tape)
REEVE: Touching.
SERVALAN: It's interesting. I don't think those tapes ever reached the highest authority at the time they were sent.
REEVE: Or the Federation didn't want to risk chasing into an unidentified viral plague. ...This mysterious trace element, it's something that's got to be looked into, no more than that. The way things stand the Federation has to cover every possibility. But Keller? Now he strikes me like a man who's scared enough. They wreck their ship on landing and he was virtually alone. He'd say anything to save his skin. I've seen that kind of stuff from dozens of people under torture.
SERVALAN: Of course you just happened to be passing the door when they said it?
REEVE: I get results. And I'll get results on Virn, if there's any to be got.
SERVALAN: At the end of those tapes Keller is obviously dying ...he wasn't immune after all. And he said the girl shot herself. They were the last. There won't be much left of them after five years.
REEVE: Which makes you rather an odd choice for this mission.
SERVALAN: You think so?
REEVE: Commissioner Sleer? In charge of the pacification program? There's nothing for you on Virn, ...unless someone thought I'd be lonely?
SERVALAN: I'm sure you're accustomed to loneliness, Investigator Reeve. You must be alone such a lot.
(an alarm sounds)
CHASGO: Investigator.
REEVE: What?
CHASGO: We're approaching the planet, sir.
(Virn is on a monitor)
CREWMAN: That looks sick too. Could that virus still be active?
REEVE: You got your broad-spectrum shots, didn't you?
CREWMAN: Yes sir.
REEVE: And what about you, Madam Brainwasher?
SERVALAN: Do you suppose I'd be on this ship without them?
(the ship shudders. An alarm sounds)
REEVE: Can't you fly this thing Chasgo?
CHASGO: Suddenly, I think we must have hit some kind of multi-gravitational field. Instruments are going mad. Investigator, you and the others better get strapped in. It's gonna be a hell of a bumpy ride down.
(on the monitor the ship is descending towards a whirlpool in Virn's atmosphere)

[Federation transport flying through whirlpool to a landing]

[Flight deck]

(Vila slams a glass down on the table)
VILA: Bang!
DAYNA: Well quite! If Scorpio crashes on Virn.
VILA: Keller's ship did.
SOOLIN: And then there's always the virus which may not have died out.
DAYNA: Yes, not to mention the untraced life Keller's computers registered. A monster perhaps?
TARRANT: Hello Avon. Nice day isn't it?
AVON: It's getting to be a wasted one.
VILA: I just don't want to die. Is that unreasonable?
DAYNA/SOOLIN/TARRANT: Yes!
AVON: You do understand the problem, don't you? Orac has intercepted Federation transmissions. We know what happened to Keller. We know what happened on Virn five years ago. We now know that the Federation is interested enough to send an investigator to the planet. If there is the remotest chance of there being anything of value on Virn, do we want it for ourselves, or are we prepared to let them get their hands on it?
SOOLIN: Put like that, I agree, we go.
DAYNA: And so do I.
AVON: Tarrant?
TARRANT: Oh, I don't think you're in any doubt about my reaction.
AVON: All right. Vila may stay at home and mind the store.
VILA: Oh no. You're not leaving me here alone.
(Avon plugs in Orac's activator)
AVON: Orac, what's the situation now?
ORAC: The last interception was of a routine signal relayed from the transport. The ship was approaching Virn.
AVON: Let's get going.

[Scorpio rotating on turntable in it's silo]

[Federation transport bridge]

REEVE: Fine landing, Chasgo. ...You certainly put the lady out of business. (to Servalan) If there is anyone on this planet, you'll have to leave them to me now.
CHASGO: Everything's in order here, sir, though the instruments are still acting up. We grazed our sides coming in. I'd better check the engines.
SERVALAN: We're supposed to be positioned half a mile from Keller's base.
REEVE: Well?
CHASGO: You felt what happened to the ship. I barely held her. The base is about five miles to the north.
REEVE: (to Servalan) Care to take a walk?
(he is checking his handgun)
REEVE: Can't trust anything else with Virn's electromagnetic record. Still, bullet can still make a mess of a man. ...I might save one for you, Chasgo, ...after that landing.
(Reeve, Servalan and the crewman leave)

[Virn surface]

(they move away from the ship over the rocky terrain. When they have moved some distance they hear the ship's engines start up)

[Federation transport bridge]

(Chasgo is frantically manipulating the controls. He hears a rumbling sound)

[Virn surface]

(they duck down as falling debris showers them. They look back to see the ship partially engulfed by a sand slide)
SERVALAN: Try and communicate.
REEVE: (into communicator) Chasgo.

[Federation transport bridge]

REEVE: (on communicator) Can you hear me?
CHASGO: (into communicator) I can hear you. ...Half the planet seems to have come down on me.

[Virn surface]

REEVE: (into communicator) You've brought a sand slide down on top of the ship.

[Federation transport bridge]

REEVE: (on communicator) Congratulations.
CHASGO: (into communicator) I checked. The area seemed stable. It shouldn't have happened.
REEVE: It did.

[Virn surface]

REEVE: (into communicator) What are you gonna to do about it?

[Federation transport bridge]

CHASGO: (into communicator) It's mostly sand, right? ...I can run the motors again, quarter power. That might shake us loose.

[Virn surface]

REEVE: (into communicator) It had better. ...Meanwhile we'll make on for the base.
(he terminates the communication)
REEVE: We've wasted enough time.

[Flight deck]

(Virn is on the viewscreen)
TARRANT [OC]: It certainly doesn't look very appealing.
DAYNA: No, it's much too green.
VILA: Why don't you repaint it while you're down there?
AVON: We shall all be close enough to repaint it. We need to get as close as we can. If Keller was right, the planet's energies may affect the teleport. The shorter the distance it has to operate over the better. Or, ...we could attempt a landing which would probably end all of our problems, ...permanently.

[Virn surface]

REEVE: Well we should be at the base by now, according to this.
(he is looking at a handheld device)
SERVALAN: Of course we should.
REEVE: Yeah well, obviously it's not working.
(they move off. Later they are sitting looking lost and dejected)
REEVE: It's getting dark, we're not gonna find anything now. We'll make camp over there. ...Come on then, let's go.
REEVE: (to the crewman) You. ...Make a fire.
(there is a fall of dirt and the crewman looks round anxiously)
REEVE: Nervous type, aren't you?
CREWMAN: There is supposed to be some form of life here, isn't there?
REEVE: Well if there is, it probably won't like fires, ...make one.
(later around the fire)
REEVE: No moonlight. What a pity.
SERVALAN: I have nothing to gain by tolerating you Reeve.
REEVE: Oh, you sure of that?
SERVALAN: I suggest you go back to the fire. The alternative could be frostbite.
REEVE: I don't believe that. A woman like you?
SERVALAN: There is something you should realise. There are no women like me. ...I am unique. ...That makes me rather dangerous. ...Good night, Investigator. ...Sweet dreams.
REEVE: (to the crewman) While we're out here I'm setting a watch. Start watching.
(in the night on a ridge the crewman is on watch with a light stick)
CREWMAN: That pig, Reeve. 'Yes, pig', 'No, pig'. ...I hate this planet.
(some rocks clatter)
CREWMAN: I wish it wouldn't do that. It could be ...Huh.
(the sand and rocks around him begin to move and he begins to subside into the sand)

[Flight deck]

AVON: You do know that this is a hell of a risk?
TARRANT: It usually is anyway, isn't it?
AVON: Dayna?
DAYNA: Oh, I trust you, Avon.
AVON: I must be slipping.
SLAVE: Yes indeed, I think I must be too, Master.
AVON: What?
SLAVE: Er, slipping, Master.
AVON: Soolin, take over.
SOOLIN: Give me manual control, Slave.
SLAVE: With great relief, Madam. I am somewhat disoriented ...disorien... ...confused.
VILA: Sounds drunk to me.
SOOLIN: Sounds useless to me, which isn't that unusual.
AVON: We can manage without Slave.
SOOLIN: Descent to the troposphere under way.
(Virn whirlpool is on a monitor)

[Virn surface]

(Reeve examines the body of the part-submerged crewman)
REEVE: He's quite dead. ...There's no sign of an injury. ...Could be the virus.
SERVALAN [OC]: Or it might have been heart failure. ...Unless you want to perform an autopsy, I suggest we move on.
(elsewhere Dayna and Tarrant teleport in. Dayna takes the magazine from her gun and returns it)
DAYNA: I haven't used old-fashioned percussion bullets in a long time.
TARRANT: Well, at least we know they'll work.
DAYNA: Well as long as four of them do.
TARRANT: Four of them?
DAYNA: That's all the Federation sent, isn't it?
TARRANT: Assuming they got down in one piece.
(Reeve is fiddling with his gun)
SERVALAN: Afraid it won't work, Investigator?
(he points the gun at her)
REEVE: Afraid it will?
SERVALAN: You would be able to report, presumably, an excellent reason for killing me?
REEVE: One more casualty on Virn. You did kill the other one, didn't you? You might have had a motive. Something he found out.
SERVALAN: Reeve, you apparently think this is a new, exciting experience for me. It isn't. I've confronted several maniacs with guns.
REEVE: Oh, I'm sure you have ...Madam President. ...I'm right aren't I, Servalan? We never actually met. But I was at one of those official receptions for good and faithful servants ...that you occasionally graced with your presence.
(he suddenly puts his hand to his head. Dayna and Tarrant are on a ridge above. They cause a small fall of rocks)
REEVE: There's something on that ridge!
(he fires winging Dayna in the arm. He moves off to search)
TARRANT: It's a flesh wound. You were lucky.
DAYNA: If I'd been lucky it wouldn't have happened.
TARRANT: (into bracelet) Avon.
AVON: (on communicator) What's wrong?
TARRANT: Dayna's just been kissed by a bullet. It's not serious, but messy. Take her up.
DAYNA: I didn't say I agreed!
TARRANT: Apparently however...
(Dayna is teleported out)
TARRANT: ...you did.
(he suddenly falls back against a rock wall)

[Flight deck]

(Soolin goes to Dayna)
VILA: I never could stand the sight of blood.
DAYNA: The feeling is probably mutual.
AVON: (into communicator) Tarrant. ...Tarrant!
(as Dayna sits down there is sand from her boots on the floor)

[Virn surface]

(Tarrant is slumped against the rock wall)
AVON: (on communicator) Tarrant, answer will you?
TARRANT: What?
AVON: Do you want a replacement for Dayna?
TARRANT: (into bracelet) No. ...No, I can handle it. ...(to himself) Whatever it is!

[Federation transport bridge]

(sand is moving across the floor towards Chasgo as he continues to try and free the ship)
CHASGO: Come on darling, shake yourself loose.

[Virn surface]

(Servalan approaches Keller's base)

[Keller's base corridor]

(Tarrant and Reeve see one another around corners and exchange shots. Reeve runs off and, as Tarrant moves to find him, a shot rings out. Reeve is on a gallery above him. Tarrant's gun is on the floor)
REEVE: All right, don't be scared. ...I'm not gonna kill you. ...Let me introduce myself. ...Investigator Reeve. Perhaps you've heard of me? And you must be one of Keller's team, so I'll just disable you to be going on with. Just so you know we can be friends. Better stand still though! I'll aim for your leg, but I'm not the world's greatest shot so if you move...
(Reeve again suddenly puts his hand to his head. Tarrant picks his gun and shoots Reeve who falls from the gallery. Servalan comes round a corner)
SERVALAN: Ha, ha, ha. I hate to tell you this, Tarrant, ...but you just killed an enemy of mine.
TARRANT: Well, everyone's entitled to one ...really bad mistake.

[Flight deck]

(there are a couple of claps of thunder and Scorpio shakes)
VILA: Avon!
AVON: No, Vila. We will stay this far down.
SOOLIN: The atmospheric conditions below don't indicate storm weather. What's causing it?
AVON: I think we are causing it.
VILA: What?
AVON: There's so much static charge, not to mention the mysterious chemicals that Keller picked up on his computers. Now we have introduced a brand new alien substance, ...this ship.
(there is another clap of thunder)
AVON: We are irritating the atmosphere and it's scratching. Noisily. And Tarrant's communicator appears to have packed up.
SOOLIN: He didn't want anyone else down there. I wonder why not?
AVON: Well you could always go down and find out. Orac, teleport.
ORAC: Teleport? I am not programmed. Three squared to the principal...
DAYNA: Oh, no.
ORAC: I love you.
VILA: Orac!
ORAC: My emotions are deeper than the seas of space. One times one is only possible in the ultra-dimensional...
AVON: Turn Orac off.
ORAC: I love you.
AVON: Off!
ORAC: We will be lovers for a little while, or maybe for a long while, who knows?
SOOLIN: I do.
(she unplugs Orac's activator)
VILA: What a thought.
SOOLIN: Keller was right again.
AVON: Vila, try and bring Tarrant back up.
VILA: ...Not operational.
AVON: Well now, none of us is going to faint with amazement at that. Are we?
SOOLIN: What's the next move?
AVON: The usual one.
(he brushes some sand off the console)
AVON: We'll wait.

[Keller's base corridor]

TARRANT: (into bracelet) Avon. ...Avon, what are you waiting for?
SERVALAN: What a shame.
TARRANT: Yes, it is rather a pity, we could all have had a reunion.
SERVALAN: Instead the reunion is limited to two. ...What is your particular grudge against me?
TARRANT: Let me see. You sat and watched my brother die. That doesn't seem to make me like you very much. Aside from all the countless other reasons anyone might have for blowing your head off.
SERVALAN: What fascinating violence.
TARRANT: I'm also a fascinating shot. Particularly at a distance of three feet.
SERVALAN: Is that how close we are? Something must be drawing us together.
TARRANT: We're both looking for the same thing.
SERVALAN: Are we? Then I suggest we agree a truce.
TARRANT: You mean I put the gun away and ...you and I trip hand in hand across the base, until you brain me with some convenient blunt instrument.
SERVALAN: You underestimate your usefulness, Tarrant. I said a truce, ...or we can stand here until we die of sedentary collapse, ...because you aren't going to kill me, Tarrant, however much you think you want to.
TARRANT: No?
(she pulls the muzzle of his gun to her forehead)
SERVALAN: At a distance of one inch, ...the shot should be even more efficient.
TARRANT: Very neat Servalan. You've found my weakness. I prefer to shoot a moving target. In other words, ...be very careful.

[Keller's base in a thunderstorm]

[Keller's base control room]

(sand outside is halfway up the two windows)
TARRANT: Sand everywhere. Keller was right about that too. ...Something else ...it's warm in here, which means the life support systems must still be working.
SERVALAN: Then someone must still be alive here.
TARRANT: Were you expecting someone to be?
SERVALAN: No.
(he holsters his gun)
TARRANT: It's fairly standard equipment. If there's power for the life supports, there will be for these.
(Servalan operates a switch on the console)
TARRANT: Ah!
(the computer enunciates the display which is appearing on a monitor)
COMPUTER: Jam. Jamble. Scramble. Uncode. Declassify. Jargon. Love is the only reality.
TARRANT: I don't suppose this kind of machine would respond to a kick in the ear, would it?
COMPUTER: Keller. Colour. Cooler. Killer. Calor. Choler.
SERVALAN: The computers here were affected by atmospheric static. He said that.
TARRANT: It's useless then.
COMPUTER: I love you. I know a land where love... Keller. Don. Don. Dun. Din. Dan. Den. Perhaps we will be lovers for a long while. Who knows? Who knows...
(Servalan switches the computer off and turns away with a distant look on her face)
TARRANT: ...We'll just have to hope he kept a diary. ...Ah, ...food.
(he sees a machine which he keys in to)
TARRANT: (to the machine) All right, let's see you do it after five years.
(he hears Servalan open a door, draws his gun and follows her into another room)

[Keller's base office]

(Keller is sitting motionless)
TARRANT: Don Keller, I presume? ...Well since you're alive, how about giving me a good reason for letting you stay that way?
(Servalan cries out with an agonised edge to her voice)
SERVALAN: Don't be such a fool, Tarrant!
(she hits Keller's body three times and he falls to the floor)
TARRANT: Then he is dead.
SERVALAN: Yes, of course he is.
TARRANT: Then if he's dead, how come his body's still in perfect condition after five years?
(he feels the body)
TARRANT: Servalan, ...his body's still flexible, he's still warm.
SERVALAN: Is he?
(there is a rumbling outside and they run back into the control room)

[Keller's base control room]

TARRANT: There seems to be something out there. Shall I see if it wants to come in?
(the room darkens as the sand rises outside covering the windows. The lights come on)
TARRANT: Interesting.
(he holsters his gun and slides the outer door open a bit. Sand pours in)
TARRANT: Now we know why it went dark. This building's been covered by a sand drift higher than the windows.
(an alarm sounds)
SERVALAN: Ah!
(Tarrant draws his gun and Servalan clings to his other arm. They are relieved to find that it is the machine Tarrant had keyed into. It has produced a tray of food and drink)

[Flight deck]

VILA: I'm hungry. Is that why I feel dizzy?
SOOLIN: Let's play a mind game.
VILA: Lovely.
SOOLIN: Let's imagine the three of you have come under a malign, ...psychic influence. To use antiquated terminology, a curse.
DAYNA: Well, why us and not you?
SOOLIN: Before my time.
VILA: What are you getting at?
SOOLIN: I seem to recall you telling me of an alien trying to take over the Liberator through Cally. Avon killed it. Psi-powers, a negative influence left behind...
DAYNA: Oh, and thunder right on cue. This is silly.
SOOLIN: Is it? ...The indestructible Liberator was destroyed, ...and Cally died.
VILA: Why don't you just shut up! What the hell do you know about any of that?
AVON: Do you believe anything of what you've just said?
SOOLIN: Not one word.
(Vila goes and sits on a step with sand all around his feet)

[Federation transport bridge]

CHASGO: None of this makes sense any more.
(the sand moves around his feet)

[Keller's base lounge area]

(Tarrant and Servalan are finishing the meal)
TARRANT: Would this be the point at which we break down and tell each other the stories of our lives?
SERVALAN: To soulful music?
TARRANT: Oh preferably. How did you get away from the Liberator?
SERVALAN: It was difficult.
TARRANT: It was impossible.
SERVALAN: Manifestly not.
TARRANT: So how?
SERVALAN: The teleport. A malfunction. A power surge. Suddenly I was back on a Federation world.
TARRANT: What a lucky little commissioner you are.
SERVALAN: Aren't I, though?
TARRANT: What happened to the presidency?
SERVALAN: It was stolen in my absence. I shall take it back eventually.
TARRANT: If the new boys don't spot you first...
SERVALAN: ...I'm dead. And anyone who was ever directly involved with me has been purged.
TARRANT: Yeah well, it's somewhat academic at the moment anyway while we're prisoners here.
SERVALAN: Prisoners?
TARRANT: What else?
SERVALAN: If anyone can find a way out of here, ...you will.
TARRANT: Will I?
SERVALAN: Naturally. You are both resourceful ...and decorative.
TARRANT: Thank you. I might say the same about you. But then I'd also say you're possibly the most unscrupulously venomous woman in the galaxy. Being shut in here with you is rather like being locked in a cage with a panther, a black cat with large golden eyes ...and long silver talons.
SERVALAN: Oh, Tarrant. I'm just the girl next door.
TARRANT: If you were the girl next door, I'd move.
SERVALAN: Where would you move to, Tarrant?
TARRANT: Next door.

[Flight deck]

(Avon is moving square blocks with words on them around on a grid)
DAYNA: What on earth are you doing?
AVON: It's called a probability square. ...You've never heard of it?
DAYNA: No.
AVON: Each square represents a piece of information, a fact, a reason for that fact, or a conclusion that might be drawn from that fact.
(Vila ambles into sight, glass in hand)
AVON: You keep shifting the squares until you achieve a pattern ...that makes sense. The square ...represents Virn.
DAYNA: Oh! Playing Orac.
AVON: And getting some very interesting results.
VILA: Avon the machine.
DAYNA: Oh, go away, Vila.
VILA: I thought I liked you.
AVON: You do like her. Now go and sit down.
(he stumbles and falls onto the steps where the sand is)
VILA: Funny, aren't I? ...If I died it'd be a real joke. ...Who'd care? ....Who cared about Cally?

[Keller's base control room]

(Tarrant is standing by the machine which produced the food and is holding a small transparent cube)
TARRANT: You know, I have a theory about all this. ...Keller's base was wiped out by a mysterious virus that left the corpses supple and undecayed. I say corpses, if we were able to search the place we'd find the others. I'm sure of that. What else have we got? A planet that registers a life reading, only nobody can figure out what the lifeform is. A planet with energies in the air that turn every piece of advanced machinery crazy from a ship to a computer. ...And yet somehow Keller's machines were able to put up this base, and the base and its life support systems have remained intact. This planet ...has one other thing though, doesn't it? The thing we're looking for. Some unique, unspecified element that could be incredibly useful. If we knew what it was... ...I know what it is.

[Keller's base lounge area]

(Tarrant has moved back to where Servalan is sitting)
SERVALAN: You don't happen to be boring me.
TARRANT: Good, then I'll go on. No, answer a question first. Before I killed him something peculiar happened to Reeve. What happened to the other two in your party?
SERVALAN: One died here. The pilot's still in the ship. There was a sand slide.
TARRANT: If he's still inside the ship then he's probably safe. ...Oh you're very clever Servalan, why can't you work it out? Sand slides, sand higher than the windows.
SERVALAN: Are you serious?
TARRANT: If you think about it, it's the only explanation.
SERVALAN: The sand?
TARRANT: You've seen the way it moves.
SERVALAN: Blown in the wind.
TARRANT: There is no wind.
SERVALAN: Nonsense, it's been blowing...
TARRANT: A sound ...like the wind, that's all.
SERVALAN: You're right. The air never stirred. There was no wind.
TARRANT: The trace of life on Virn was the sand. Some emanation from it affects the atmosphere, even the magnetic fields of the planet, and causes the rest of the trouble. Ships crash, instruments fail, nobody can protect himself. ...And when the sand comes into contact with a human body it sucks out the cellular energy, sometimes fast, sometimes slowly. I imagine that depends on how much sand is in the vicinity. But that's what Keller's plague was. Not a virus, a vampire! It killed all of them, except the girl. And then the third element of Virn's ecology took over.
SERVALAN: They were preserved.
TARRANT: It appears the sand can nourish itself on the dead too so it makes sure the dead ...stay edible. And there's the unique element we came here to find, a preservative that acts indefinitely without dehydration or freezing. Oh it could be incredibly useful. It's also a completely un-get-at-able under Virn's built-in conditions.
SERVALAN: A vampire? It's an imaginative theory, Tarrant, but it's flawed. ...We're still alive.
TARRANT: I know, ...and that's the nastiest part of all.
SERVALAN: Well?
TARRANT: Suppose the sand can reason in some rudimentary but quite logical way. A food source here can last for years but it seems reasonable to think that it would like more food available ...fresh food.
SERVALAN: Don Keller and the girl.
TARRANT: The last survivors here, apparently immune. Then the girl killed herself. ...She must have guessed. Once the girl died Keller immediately got sick, her death made him expendable. ...Well it's breeding stock, Servalan. It was keeping them alive to breed a race of food animals for itself, ...a herd. And that's our function, yours and mine. So we get a cosy pen and good food. ...Now I suppose I should be flattered. The vampire tested me and thinks I'm superior stock to Reeve and the others. It reckoned it could afford to kill them if it saved me. And you, of course. Yes, any number of women would be safe. A herd.
(he shows her the cube he has been nursing)
TARRANT: The label says, 'Earth Spring Water,' bottled in glass. You'd better take it. ...I don't think you'll ever see Earth again.
(Servalan becomes quite emotional)
SERVALAN: Don Keller, ...he was my lover. ...I was eighteen.
TARRANT: He's the reason you're here.
SERVALAN: He left me. ...I grew up. ...Power became my lover. ...Power is like a drug. ...It is beautiful. ...Shining. ...I could destroy a planet by pressing a button. ...I loved him.
TARRANT: This isn't going to help either of us.
SERVALAN: I don't care about either of us.
TARRANT: Hey, it doesn't rain here remember.
(Tarrant kisses Servalan)

[Flight deck]

DAYNA: Avon, there's sand all around him. It wasn't there before.
AVON: Sand. ...Vila, ...get up!
VILA: Get lost!
(as Soolin and Dayna lift him up to move him to the recliner he drops his glass)
VILA: Oh, thanks. ...I think I'm dying.
DAYNA: Avon, look.
(the water from the glass is reacting with the sand)
AVON: Of course. Water!
(Avon holds up one of the square blocks from the probability square)

[Keller's base lounge area]

(Tarrant drops sand through his hands and then goes over to Servalan)
TARRANT: Since you're awake, you'd see better from here.

[Keller's base control room]

TARRANT: You cry ...very beautifully, Servalan, and one of your tears did this...
(he pours water onto sand on a tray which bubbles and smokes)
TARRANT: ...to the sand on the floor. At first I thought it was just your destructive nature.
(he pulls her to him by the back of her neck and kisses her)
TARRANT: Try to remember I have a gun.
(she brings his gun up into his face)
SERVALAN: Actually ...no.

[Flight deck]

(Soolin lowers Vila's arm)
SOOLIN: His pulse is very weak.
AVON: Well that should go very nicely with the rest of him.
DAYNA: Well, there doesn't seem to be any more sand. There wasn't much but it was everywhere.
SOOLIN: All right Avon, you've told us your theory. It wasn't a plague on Virn, it was the sand feeding off human energy. Does that mean we reckon Tarrant is dead?
AVON: Not necessarily. According to Orac's earlier information there's probably a woman down there. It's just possible that Tarrant was stronger and fitter than the three men in the Federation patrol, in which case he may have been kept alive, as Keller was kept alive, and for the same reason.
SOOLIN: New food supplies.
DAYNA: Yes, but what about us?
AVON: Presumably the sand up here has compared Vila's wits and stamina with mine and concluded that ...I am the dominant male. On the herd principle therefore, it decided that Vila was superfluous and it could kill him. You two, of course, ...would have been allowed to live.
SOOLIN: Don't say it, Avon.
AVON: I wasn't going to say anything.
(there is a clap of thunder, the ship shakes throwing them to the floor)
SOOLIN: How much more of this can the ship take?
DAYNA: Look, there must be some way to get Tarrant off that planet.
AVON: Not unless we can do something about the sand on Virn. One glass of water is not going to be enough.
SOOLIN: A rainstorm might be.
DAYNA: But it never rains on Virn.
AVON: Maybe ...we can change that. ...It's not perfect but now that we have cleared the sand away from here these instruments make some kind of sense. I believe that we can nurse this ship through a controlled nosedive.
DAYNA: What?
AVON: Where we are now we are causing massive atmospheric disturbance. Let us get closer. Let us make it worse. Eventually there may be enough of a build-up to create some kind of rain.
SOOLIN: Or to knock us out of the sky.
AVON: This is not just a rescue mission for poor gallant Tarrant! While the sand remains active, the planet will not let go of us! The instruments are unreliable. We have Virn hanging on our heels. How do you think we are going to get away?!
(Dayna and Soolin rush to their positions)
AVON: I take it that means 'Yes'.
DAYNA: Well, how could we refuse, Avon? You are the dominant male, aren't you?
(as the ship gathers momentum there is a flash of lightning)
AVON: Dayna! Emergency lighting.

[Keller's base in a thunderstorm]

[Keller's base control room]

(Servalan has the gun pointed at Tarrant's head)
TARRANT: You can't kill me. If you do your value to the sand is over. You'll be dead in half an hour.
SERVALAN: You forget. My pilot is still alive on the ship. One man, one woman. I can kill you.

[Virn surface]

(heavy rainfall is causing the surface to smoke)

[Keller's base control room]

SERVALAN: It's raining! The rain will destroy the sand outside. How soon before the sand in here realises we can escape and kills us?
TARRANT: Water. We'll break the windows.
(Tarrant gestures towards his gun and Servalan gives it to him)
TARRANT: Stand back.
(he shoots out the two windows)

[Flight deck]

(Vila suddenly wakes up)
VILA: What was that?!
DAYNA: Just some glass breaking.
VILA: What happened?
DAYNA: You wouldn't be any happier if I told you.
VILA: Oh. ...What happened to me?
DAYNA: Oh, not a lot. There wasn't enough of it to kill you.
VILA: Kill me?!
DAYNA: It didn't.
VILA: I'm not so sure.
AVON: Slave.
SLAVE: Yes, Master.
AVON: Nice to have you back. Put the automatics on line. (to Soolin) Check Orac.
(she plugs in the activator)
SOOLIN: How are you feeling now, Orac?
ORAC: Feeling is not a term which can under any circumstances be applied to me.
AVON: Would you care to comment on the teleport?
ORAC: The teleport is fully functional.
SOOLIN: You gambled, Avon, but you won.
AVON: Do I get a prize?

[Virn surface]

(as Tarrant and Servalan move along she refers to the hand held device)
SERVALAN: This is working now. It should take me about an hour to reach the ship. ...You don't have to see me home.
TARRANT: What makes you think I'll let you go at all?
SERVALAN: I mean so much to you?
(Tarrant's bracelet bleeps)
AVON: (on communicator) Tarrant! ...Tarrant!
TARRANT: (into bracelet) Yes Avon?
AVON: We're bringing you up, ..now!
TARRANT: All right. Oh by the way, I've found out what the magic chemical is, but I can't bring it back with me.
AVON: Tell me when you get here.
SERVALAN: Thank you.
TARRANT: Servalan...
(Servalan puts her fingers up to his lips)
SERVALAN: ...Goodbye Tarrant.
(Tarrant teleports out. Servalan pauses on a rock. There is a sound and she rushes off. There is chemical activity on the rock where she had been sitting)

[Scorpio in flight]

[Flight deck]

DAYNA: Homeward bound. You know, we might just as well not have bothered to come. The whole thing's been ridiculous.
SOOLIN: One consolation, ...though, we can't get the preservative, neither can the Federation.
VILA: You never said what the woman was like, Tarrant.
TARRANT: Didn't I?
DAYNA: Pretty?
TARRANT: Pretty familiar. ...Servalan.
AVON: Servalan?
TARRANT: Yes. She explained her survival.
DAYNA: And did she excuse it too?
AVON: Presumably she was after the same thing as the Federation, but for private purposes.
TARRANT: And Don Keller was supposed to have been her lover.
AVON: She told you that?
TARRANT: Yes.
AVON: You believed her?
TARRANT: Not necessarily. I think it was a gambit to gain my sympathy ...in a nervous situation.
AVON: And she got it, too, didn't she? ...Your sympathy, ...I mean.
TARRANT: Yes, Avon. ...I've said all I'm going to.
(Vila, Dayna and Soolin leave)
AVON: (to Tarrant) Orac has theorised that the planet makes its own sand. It's probably cooking up a new batch right now. Servalan may not get off Virn alive, which would make you the last man in her life. ...That's ironic, isn't it?

[Federation transport on surface]

[Flight deck]

(Servalan wakes Chasgo)
SERVALAN: The others are dead. We haven't time to discuss it now, we're in danger. Don't ask what, just take this ship up.
CHASGO: But the instruments won't even respond.
SERVALAN: They will! Do as I say.
CHASGO: All right, I'll try.
SERVALAN: Was there any sand in the ship?
CHASGO: Yes. ...I didn't like the look of it. After the rain had cleared us I threw it outside. Then I felt... I must've fallen asleep. ...This is almost normal. What the hell has been...
SERVALAN: Stop talking and take this ship up! I have a negative report to prepare.

[Federation transport leaving Virn]

[Flight deck]

SERVALAN: Don Keller. ...You waited five years to show me you were dead. ...And Del Tarrant. ...I had the gun. ...but I didn't kill you, Tarrant, ...yet.
(she breaks the cube of Earth spring water which spills onto some sand left on a control panel. Smoke rises)

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