by Mistress Sarah

Disclaimer: These are not my characters. They are owned, copyrighted and created by far wiser people than me. I have attempted to bring them back to life for a short time, attempting to ease that gaping hole in my heart where B5/Crusade once was.
Note: Series is NC-17. m/f, m/m.
Archiving: SW and the WWOMB archive

Excalibur's Ship-Avatar.

Lyta and her Master had left my Master's quarters, and I was still lying in bed, waiting for my Master. I had enjoyed the chance to talk with Lyta, as she was the Senior Avatar in the fleet. The average ship's age in the fleet was only ten or so years old, while the Alexander had been in service for over thirty years.

Our ships were still linked, so I tried to mentally send her a message to once again offer my thanks, but I found her ... occupied... with her Master. The Alexander and the Excalibur had begun to mate again, and she was being flown by her Master. Their many years together had given him a keen insight in what she enjoyed, and he was almost ruthless in the use of his knowledge. Whimpering, I wished that my Master would attend to me, flying me also, so that I might have some relief.

I hadn't had a chance to tell her my story, as her Master had been called back to his Ship right after she had told me her story, so instead, I found myself remembering... Anything to take my mind off the fact that my Master wasn't using me.

I was happy, once.

Before I knew what a freak of nature I truly was, I was blissfully ignorant. My litter mates and I played silly childish games together while we were under the watchful eyes of our litter mother, and at night, the eight of us all curled next to her for warmth. Physically, she wasn't my mother, but emotionally and spiritually, she was.

And I was happy.

During those long nights, sometimes one of my litter mates would wake from sleep, crying softly, and our mother would soothe and comfort my pack mate. She would tell stories about how one day, when we were merged, we'd be ship's avatars, and we'd have brave Masters who were strong, and handsome, and our Masters would be understanding of our flaws. They would care for us, and we'd care for them, and life would be wonderful as we flew among the stars.

I think I was the only one who knew that our group mother wept softly after telling us those stories and lulling the others back to sleep. Snuggling closer to her, I'd nuzzle her neck and face with my wet kisses, and try to console her, even though I never understood why she cried.

Now, years later, I knew why she wept.

She knew she was lying to her children, but now, if I ever saw my litter mother again, I would thank her for those lies. For that duplicity had given me hope during my darkest moments. I hoped that perhaps one day, if I tried hard enough, I would find that loving Master.

So I strove, and I did everything possible to be worthy of that fabled Master. What if she or he saw me one day, and because of my flawed nature I unintentionally offended them? They would turn away in revulsion, and my chance would be gone.

But pot metal is still pot metal, never to be tempered and molded into sword steel, and so my best efforts failed constantly due, to my inherently flawed nature.

Years later, I met my Master.

His name was Matthew Gideon, and I hated him.

I had been linked with the Excalibur for several months before I met the man who was to become my Master. The two of us, Ship and I needed to become adjusted to one another, and I enjoyed learning how to fly, how to destroy and how to kill. I had never felt such fulfillment until the day the two of us screamed our first battle cry in the darkness of space, and we had annihilated our first pretend foe. TOGETHER.

Laughing, thrilling in the intoxication of flight and fight, I had merged further and further with the Excalibur, and I realized that I had finally found my soul-mate, for she loved me unconditionally. The two of us had been full of happiness for we were finally...complete.

My partner! My Ship! We will do well together - The Others will learn to fear our name, like they tremble to hear the name of the Alexander and the Churchill!

Yes! YES! YES!

My new Master was onboard, and I was trying my hardest to be perfect in every way I could. From where my station was, I could barely see him out of the corner of my eye, and I refrained from looking at him directly. There would be time for that later. I was so naïve, so innocent then, hoping that I had found a Master that I could love.

"Randy. You didn't have to hand pick my Assassin for me." His voice sounded amused.

"Ed wanted me to do so. And while those Captain's bars positively gleam like a pair of supernovas, I'm sure that even you are not brave enough to tell the Old Man to go scratch."

'Go ahead, I'd like to see you try' was the unvoiced comment in the other male's voice. He was a big man, blond hair liberally streaked with gray, and he laughed a great deal, even though he wore the Black and Scarlet of a Commissioned Officer-Assassin. I sensed something about the blond, a spiritual taint, and I was suddenly afraid of him.

Laughter. The Assassin found everything amusing, it appeared, especially my new Master but I still could sense a great deal of darkness in him.

"You're right about that, Randy."

"I always am. Her name is Dureena Nafeel, and she seems to be a bit of a wildcat." That was admitted softly, which made my new Master laugh.

"Is that where you got that new scar on your face? I was wondering about it. You didn't have it the last time I saw you."

More laughter. "I cannot confirm or deny that is how I received it, but I did try her out before I gave my unconditional approval to the Inquisitors."

"I'm sure you tried her out in more ways than one." 'In bed, Randy?' was the leering unspoken comment.

"Matthew, you wound me. After all we've been through together, that comment deeply injures me."

"Randy, don't bullshit me."

"Wounds me, directly to the heart that someone I helped raise from diapers..." The Assassin's voice dripped in pretend hurt, as though he were mortally wounded by Gideon's remarks. "Burped even, getting my nice uniform all dirty. Put the training wheels on his Star Fury..."


"Gives me so little credit about having common human emotions such as sensitivity and compassion. Do you really think that part of my evaluation process was spreading her legs wide?"

"Randy, you've been a great person to work for, but you and I know exactly who and what you truly are."

Randy's voice turned somber. "I am who I am, and I am what I was created to be. Very few people can ever forgive me for my genetic flaw as I have found out first hand during my military career. I had hoped that you might be one of them, but it appears I was mistaken. Perhaps with your Assassin, you can find some compassion for her flaw. It is difficult enough to serve, Matthew, but to serve someone who has contempt for you, then...the leash chokes and confines."

"Randolph Jonathan Morrison, I didn't mean to hit a sore spot." Quickly, he began questioning Morrison about his new Assassin as though attempting to assuage his unintended insult. "So tell me about this Dureena. She's non-military?"

"Yes. Most Assassins are non-military, you know. I was one of the few that actually made it in the Military before they discovered my God given ability or as most say, my Fatal Flaw."

"Randy. I am truly sorry about upsetting you."

"Whatever, Matthew, I have long gotten used to any comments that one could make about my special aptitude. Dureena was found in one of those back-water planets, fighting in the Arena. She was ... magnificent, I was told. The Inquisitor noticed her natural ability and bought her. The rest, as they say, is history."

"Randy. I have a question for you?"

"Ask away, Matthew."

"You and Ed work together well?"

"Extremely well. We compliment each other well, I being his Ying to my Yang. What's your question?"

"How did he earn your loyalty?"

Randy laughed, and it appeared all had been forgiven between the two men. "That, you'll have to figure out on your own."

"How the hell did I know that you were going to say that?"

I stop reminiscing after that, because what happened next was still too painful for me to want to remember. After Randy had left the ship, my Master had taken me repeatedly to prove that he was the one in total control. After he was bored with me, he had given me to Executive Officer Eilerson for his use.

I had been in a significant amount of pain after that initiation rite, so I had slept in my Ship's "brain" and she had comforted and soothed me while I had wept. The next day had found my Master even angrier with me as he thought I had been planning a rebellion during my disappearance. Gideon had beaten me severely for my alleged mutinous thoughts while I had whimpered repeatedly how I would never betray him, and then he had shown me where I was to sleep, so he could keep a watchful eye on me. A small rug in front of his bed was to be my sleeping place.

I felt like I was burning up with a fever, and I snuggled under the blankets, wanting nothing more than to fall asleep so I could stop remembering.

John Matheson.

I didn't like what I was seeing in Matthew.

Not at all.

He appeared to be sleeping with a few members of the crew. Ok- he wasn't sleeping, and it was more than a 'few". Try like fifteen crewmembers. Sometimes in his ready room, sometimes in the bullet car and a few other places.

I didn't think anyone else noticed - as he was being very circumspect.

But I noticed.

Matthew was displaying a dangerously reckless streak and I again wondered about the change that had taken place since he had been rescued. He didn't talk to me anymore, and I had found my duty shift rearranged when he came back to duty. I now had straight Ship midnight's for the next four months.

Normally, Matthew was an early riser, usually arriving an hour or two early for each shift but with all his extracurricular activities, he had changed his own shift to a more reasonable mid-morning to mid-evening and he still wasn't on time. My relief was Lt. Jackson, and she was always prompt, but I got the feeling that Matthew was avoiding me for some reason. He had held a staff meeting and I hadn't been informed. I had confronted him carefully about that, and Matthew had brushed it off with an excuse of not wanting to interrupt my sleep for this staff meeting.

"It was just an update of how everyone's doing, a brief over-view of where we've come, and where we're going. You already know that, so you don't need to lose any sleep over it. Lt. Matheson, if I didn't know better, I think you weren't happy that I was making sure that you got enough rest. Those midnight shifts can wreak havoc on your sleep patterns until you get adjusted."

Then Matthew had walked away, and one of his female conquests had followed him surreptitiously.

The entire conversation had upset me, especially when I had noticed that he wasn't looking in my eyes. He wasn't even looking in my general vicinity. Instead he was busy smirking at the buxom red head in the hallway. Since he came back, he was holding me at arm's length, not allowing me to be too close to him, and there were other new personality quirks that were apparent.

Matt loved to antagonize Max, but there was a darker edge to it now, and he was still flirting with both Sarah and Dureena as his libido was apparently in hyperdrive. He didn't play basketball anymore, instead he spent a lot of time in the gym playing with knives and other sharp implements.

Then there was the whip. Matthew had gotten himself a whip, and I had covertly watched him as he practiced with it. He used it like an extension of himself, and I wondered at his familiarity with it. One day I found Dureena observing me, while I espied my wayward Captain, and I suddenly had a moment's unease. What if she told him?

"John." Her voice was low.


"He's using it like he's been trained with it. I also noticed that he seems to be favoring knives and a few other tools favored by assassins for his daily exercise session."

Her golden eyes looked at me, and I found myself regretfully answering her unspoken question. "He doesn't use his normal equipment for exercise. Instead, he seems to be focusing..."

"On improving his flexibility, his speed and his eye hand coordination. Ever since he was rescued, I noticed, he's been acting... a little unGideon-like. I would have sworn by my ancestors that there's no way Matt could have handled a whip without hurting himself."

The two of us stared at the Captain who was unaware that we were watching him. The silence grew and grew until at last, Dureena broke it.

"I'm not the only one who has noticed it. Max, Sarah and a few other people. I know you've been researching what happened to him prior to his rescue, and I think we need to have a brief... get together to pool our information. But, I'm thinking that we need to be careful, as whoever this new Matt is, might think we're trying to move against him. He seems... a little paranoid, especially when he deals with you."

Max Eilerson, Commander.

I had a wonderful surprise waiting for me in my quarters after I had been temporarily relieved of duty by General Ryan. I had spent a few hours in the gym, trying to work off my excess adrenaline, and I had returned to my quarters to take a long, hot shower. Someone had broken into my quarters while I was showering, so I was amused to find that I had a package on my bed. And what a package it was! All wrapped in silk and lace, and just dying to be taken in a multitude of different ways.

"Hello, Sarah. To what do I owe this chance to experience unspeakable delights?"

"Master, fly me." Sarah whispered.

Ah. We were playing Avatar and Master again, and I found my pulse quickening. Reaching over to one of the drawers in my desk, I pulled out a few toys. Carefully I applied the soft velvet collar to her neck and I chained her to my bed. It had a long leash so to prevent an accidental strangulation of my 'Avatar' and she began moaning softly.

"Take me, take me, Master..." Her voice was throaty and I suddenly grinned when I felt the familiar rocking motion begin again.

"The Alexander is riding the Excalibur again, and it must be driving you wild with desire. You little bitch, you're such a slut." Carefully I pinned her arms, and I began to threaten her. "When I'm done with you, the entire crew will know that I've flown you, as the Excalibur will echo your climax. Everyone will know, that I am your master, and you are under my complete control."

I bit her on her shoulder, and she moaned again.

"Harder, Master. Harder."

I had unleashed her after a rather glorious time, and she purred her approval.

"We need to talk, Commander," she whispered softly.

"Yes, DOCTOR." I answered, stressing her rank. Sarah never believed in pillow talk, or any niceties like that after fucking. No, Sarah usually had something on her agenda besides sex, so I gave her my full attention.

"Gideon's acting odd. Have you noticed?"

"Yes. He is. Ever since we had the misfortune to rescue him from that temporal flux, he's been acting differently."

Sarah sat up in my bed, and I began to play with her breasts. She growled at me in disapproval for being so easily led astray from the subject we were discussing.

"What can I say? My mother never breastfed me so I've had a bias since then, Sarah. But," I removed my hand from her nipple, "You were busy talking about how odd Mateo has been acting since we found him."

"Yes. I think it's adversely affecting our ship. And as Commander, you must handle the situation. Especially now, as no doubt he's complacent after pulling that near miracle of our survival. "

Sarah, wonderful bloodthirsty Sarah was telling me it was time for a coup d' etat I pulled her back down into my bed, and she laughed delightedly.

"I've always wanted to be a Captain's mistress."

"That's why you were Gideon's, I thought." I warned her that I knew she was playing games, deciding which one of us would further her ambition and that for now, she thought I'd help her goals along better than Matthew. Even with Sarah's defacto permission for a mutiny, my head was still the one that would roll if anyone found out about it. She'd just blink her eyes in pretend astonishment when they used my severed head as a soccer ball.

"He's so... vanilla. While you on the other hand, think of the most fun games to play." Sarah smiled delightedly, and I began kissing her again.

"We can't do it with Ryan and his Assassin here. Ed's Matt's mentor, after all, and I think the Assassin might be ... fond... of our little Matthew. He did pick Dureena-Assassin out for him, after all. So, we'll arrange for an accident, after the Alexander is away from us. A bitterly tragic accident, with both our Fearless Leader and his Assassin quite... utterly... DEAD."

Matthew Gideon II

I was having entirely too much fun in this new world that I had been sent to. I had voraciously read the history of this strange universe, and I realized something wonderful.

No Guides. Sorry... SHADOWS.

No Inquisitors. TECHNOMAGES - with the exception of a few rogues who sometimes showed up, life appeared to be blessedly Inquisitor free.

No OTHERS... Sorry, Vorlon.

Instead there were a few races fighting it out to be the head banana, Earth was seeded with a plague of sorts, the Centauri & Narns were bombed back to the Stone Age, and Telepaths were apparently part of the military. A man with a brain could go far in this universe, much farther than I could go in my old universe. I have to admit it, I liked this soft universe except for those vibe showers.

I HATE vibe showers as I just never felt clean after I was done showering.

Things were going entirely too well for me, as I had managed to fool just about everyone into thinking I was Captain Clean. Any lapses I made I brushed off as a lingering affect of my harrowing ordeal in the Spatial Anomaly. No one seemed to notice, no one seemed to mind, except for that Damn Mind-Freak.

I had to do something about him, and quickly before he blew my cover. Something permanently fatal might be a very good idea, and so I decided it was time to go back to my quarters and think of something suitably drastic.

Meeting Excalibur Senior Staff - on EA Excalibur

"He's acting really odd lately." John Matheson announced.

"Can you put a more clear cut definition on what you mean by that? Captain Courageous always acts a little odd," Max Eilerson announced, "It must be the hero mystique affecting his brain. You know, running into burning buildings, and other stuff like that begins to affect one's brain after a while. "

John Matheson and Sarah Chambers both shot their favorite Xeno-archeologist a look of sheer disgust which Max ignored completely.

"He's a little paranoid lately."

"And his senior staff meeting in a utility closet doesn't give him that right?" Max asked sarcastically. "Couldn't you find a bigger one at least? Someplace we could actually sit?"

"It's one of the few places that aren't monitored that the four of us could meet." Dureena hissed.

"Cloak and dagger dramatics." Max sniffed.

"Enough. Go ahead, start talking John." Sarah commented.

John Matheson then took a deep breath and began to explain quickly and succinctly of the changes that he had noticed in the Captain.

Matthew Gideon I

The circus was long since over, the clowns have left and even the elephants have been cleaned up after, but I was still awake. My head was pounding, and I had the sinking suspicion that the predicted mutiny was going to rear its ugly head and soon. I had bought a few more minutes of peace, but I hadn't won the damn war. My headache decided to land right behind my left eye, and I wished that I felt comfortable enough to ask Sarah for some sort of analgesic. But this Sarah Chambers would probably add something to it to make sure that I never woke up again.

I heard shuffling behind me, and my stomach began to tighten up for I knew perfectly well who the person behind me was. The person stealthily creeping up behind me was the man-animal that wore John Matheson's face, and who wanted me, to pardon the vernacular, fly 'im. Ignoring him, I concentrated on the data from my rescue attempt. I was on the verge of a breakthrough, as I could feel that there was a pattern forming that might help me get the hell out of this Disney-Universe and back home.

He leaned his head against my knee, and I knew what he wanted.

Not tonight, dear! I've got a headache!

Tentatively, like he was a dog, I patted him on his head. "Good job today."

I figured that would be high praise from Matthew "Captain Bligh" Gideon and it might make JT happy enough to go to bed. Reading through the instruction manual on Avatars, I had noticed that I was suppose to reward him after today's job, but that the book had given me no suggestions on what the proper reward was. Maybe that was all the reward he needed? A kind word or two?

No, he continued to rest his head against my knee instead of scampering off to sleep on his rug. Shit, he seemed feverish, and since I was the designated JT-watcher, I put my hand on his forehead.

Come on, I don't know anything about Avatars! Give him two aspirins and have him call me in the morning?


Inane question, as he was burning up. He whimpered slightly in agreement. Gingerly, hoping whatever he had wasn't catching, I pulled his head up to look at me, and I noticed that his eyes looked glassy.

Fucking wonderful. Normally I'd push this right into Sarah's lap, but I think she doesn't like you, my little lonely JT. I better research this.

"Go to my bed. Lie down. I will be there shortly. I need to look up information." I always kept my comments to JT short and sweet, as I was never sure how much he understood me, and I was glad when he nodded his head. "But, I want you to drink some water."

Didn't need my Avatar dehydrating, as I could imagine that Eddie might use his cudgel on me. Hey. Maybe Ed would know what to do? Did he say something about if my Avatar didn't perk up to call him? I think I shall.

Wonderful idea, Matt.

The graying blond on the Alexander appeared amused that I was trying to contact Ed. His insignia was that of a Marine Lieutenant Colonel, and he wore an uniform that was black and scarlet. Bad enough that this universe's military command structure didn't make sense as the different branches of the military were completely integrated and intermingled, but ... the blond was the first one who wore those particular colors. Black as night, and scarlet as fresh spilled blood....

What the hell do those colors mean?

"I'm sorry. He's a little busy right now, can I take a message?" The Lieutenant Colonel... Morrison, leered when he gave me that information. With that particular smirk, I had a pretty good idea what Eddie was busy with. Or should I say 'with whom?'

"Any idea how long...," I trailed off, refusing to believe that I was actually asking this Morrison fellow how long the General would be... debriefing... his Avatar.

"Matthew.... Matthew... Matthew...." Morrison spoke sadly though he still appeared fairly amused. "I'm sure you don't want me to interrupt the General to ask that particular question, now do you? You should remember from first hand experience that the General does have a bit of a temper."

"No. Forget I called." It looked like that I'd have to figure out what the problem with JT was on my own.

"Matthew, let me switch this over to my office. You were never one just to call and say 'Hello'."

"Ok - What's the problem? You can speak freely to Uncle Randy." His voice fairly dripped in fatherly wisdom, and I groaned. Randy was another person who knew my alter pretty well. What the hell did Ship's Confinement mean anyway? What ever it was, the two of us had been sentenced to it for a month early on in "my" career. I had found some information on him quickly by searching through my files and I was grateful I had done so. A former Department Head of mine plus being the long time Executive Officer of the Alexander who just had a whole list of commendations on how well he killed people. And to top it off, I noticed that Murdering Morrison landed a bit on the sardonic side of the personality gauge.

Wonderful. An Assassin with a sense of humor.

Just kill me now!

On second thought, maybe that wasn't a good idea. I could just imagine him slicing and dicing me while he was wearing a red rubber clown nose and I wore a clown wig. That thought would haunt my dreams for weeks, I was sure, as I would dream about being repeatedly killed.

Death by a rubber chicken, what a way to go.

And my alter LIKED Murdering Morrison the Marine.

"I need help with my Avatar," I admitted softly, and then decided I sounded too compassionate. "Freak's acting up."

"What's the problem? I doubt he's really acting up as I know you wouldn't tolerate that for long."

"No. Feverish and he seems to be in a great deal of pain. Whatever your Avatar did for him didn't seem to help for that long. He's spiking a temperature of almost 40 Celsius."

"I'll be right over, then. I'll fix up your little guy, and then we'll play cards for a bit. No one ever wants to play with me anymore, except for Ed, and he's too busy."

Perhaps nobody wanted to play cards with you because of that little fact that if you lost, you might decide to take a piece of each player?

Meeting Excalibur Senior Staff - on EA Excalibur

John finished his rather extensive list, and it took several minutes for the Executive Staff to digest the information.

"You say, this is all since he was rescued?" Max asked.

"Yes." John answered slowly, as though he thought he was betraying his Captain by that admission.

"There was so difficulty during the rescue, wasn't there?" Sarah began questioning. "His signal was flickering wildly, and for a few times..."

"We thought we had lost him, but then the signal came back, stronger than ever, but..." John stopped, and grimaced. "But we thought the signal was distorted by the temporal flux, as it wasn't the standard EF rescue beacon, and the metal of his ship..."

"Had been affected, as it wasn't quite the standard material used in the manufacturing process for Star Furies. The Captain made us dump it.... as it wasn't even suitable for scrap metal," Eilerson reminded. "He did so quickly, as though not wanting any of us to get our hands on it. We didn't even analysis it, because at the time, we thought that it had been affected by the Spatial flux as it was giving off quantum particles that we had no way of controlling."

"Hypothesis:" Sarah's voice was barely audible. "The beacon was not the same as the Standard EF beacon. The metal in the Ship retrieved had a basic similarity to what we use, but it wasn't the same. The Captain... appears to be physically the same man, but... mentally and emotionally, he's not."

"Then, our tentative assumption is," John spoke softly. "Is perhaps that the Matthew Gideon captaining our ship, is not our Captain, but instead... his counterpart from another universe."

Max began rubbing his head as though in pain, and he sighed. "I hate to say this, but I think..."

"We need Galen." Dureena's voice brooked no contradiction to that.

"No," the Xeno-archeologist laughed. "I think I'm in a bad sci-fi crystal."

Sarah began laughing softly, with a trace of hysteria in it. "Do you realize, what we're saying?"

Max nodded, and Dureena spoke for the four. "That we're planning a mutiny and that somewhere, out there, our Matthew Gideon is trying to get home."

"Unless he's dead."

The three mutineers glared at Eilerson, who matched them stare for stare.

"You know, I might be right. Don't get your hopes up, because you have to realize that even if he IS alive, there's no way that we might be able to bring him back."

Matthew Gideon I.

Morrison's arrival had been a near crisis as he came onboard the Excalibur, fully armed and carrying his little black box of assassin playthings. My Head of Security nearly had a melt down when I told her to direct him to my quarters.

"Captain! He's an..."

"I know what he is, and let's be honest. If Randy was going to kill me, he'd be a whole fucking less obvious! Use your head for something besides growing hair!" I snarled that at her, in my best impersonation of what I thought my alter would sound like, and she backed right down.

Randy arrived quickly, as I was trying to convince JT to suck on some ice chips.

"When Ed left six hours ago, he said that your Brain looked fine to him. What happened? Do you have his bio-rhythms for the last six hours? I can pull them off your computer, if you'll just let me have access, that way I can download them to my computer."

"Go ahead." I ordered.

"Hmmm..." The big man stared at JT's statistics and then he brusquely ordered me to fill my bathtub with tepid water.

Excalibur's Avatar.

There was another man in my Master's room, and for some reason, he reminded me of Dureena-Assassin. He undressed me quickly and then he picked me up, carrying me easily like I was a small child. His skin was cool against my feverish skin, so I tried to stay as close to him as possible, even though I could sense 'wrongness' radiating from him. I was so fevered, and he was so blessedly cool.

Ah. Randy. His name was Randy-Assassin, and he was the Alexander's Assassin. I had seen him once years ago.

"Into the tub, you go."

I went into the warm water happily, as I immediately felt cooler. My Master sat next to the bathtub, while I rested. He checked my temperature often, and I heard my Master reporting what my temperature was to the other man in the room.

"Ok- let's get him out of the water now. He's down to 39 Celsius, and I don't want to bring it down too quickly. You're lucky he didn't seize when his temperature spiked, as that would have confused the hell out of the Excalibur. With her stuck to the Alexander, we would have had a huge fucking problem in more ways than one."

I was removed from the water, and I was aggressively dried by the two men. I began to shiver uncontrollably, and I was quickly dressed in a long robe that I believed to be my Master's.

"Come on, let's walk to the bed."

Stumbling, while leaning onto the Assassin for support, I made my way back to the bed where I was immediately tucked in.

"Electrolyte imbalance. With that, combined with the Excalibur's condition, your little mind-freak couldn't regulate his homeostasis enough to handle everything he was experiencing. He's on complete bed rest until we reach B5. He's not to be allowed to link with the ship, and you'll need to make sure he takes his medication until then. I'll mix something up, and then, my little Brain-Boy, you're going to get a needle or two in that posterior of yours."

I was drifting off to sleep to the sounds of medication being mixed when I heard a sound of amusement.

"Roll over, mind-freak, or else I'll have to roll you over. Matthew, why don't you get a few ice chips for our little invalid here?"

My Master left the room quickly, and I quickly rolled onto my belly.

"Not that position, silly little freak."

I was surprised to hear gentle derision and contempt directed not only to me, but also to himself in his voice, as he fully accepted himself as a perversion of humanity also.

"Position number three, and spread those legs wide, silly boy." He slapped me on my ass to help motivate me to move.

Quickly, I moved myself into that position, my arms and head resting on the headboard, and my knees were bent, and spread wide. Morrison settled into position behind me as though he was going to fly me, and he began teasing me, by forcing my legs farther apart.

"Now, I should have made a suppository for you, but instead, I'm going to give you a few shots instead."

I felt my rear being uncovered, and his large hands began to knead my ass.

"You know, I should ask Matthew if he'd let me borrow you for several hours when you're feeling better. You'd like that, wouldn't you? As I've been trained fully in all the little idiosyncrasies of you little mind-freaks. I know all your little quirks, and how if I touch certain implants it can cause you intense pleasure or... pain. You'd like that, wouldn't you?"

His hand pressed on one of my implants that was located near my coccyx and I suddenly gasped in pleasure due to the sudden ardor his touch had caused.

"We assassins are well trained in how to mix pleasure and pain, so perhaps, I will ask Matthew if I can. He can't refuse me, you know."

Randy's hands began kneading that particular implant, and I began to whimper uncontrollably. Waves upon waves of pleasure were building in me, and I knew that I was responding to his touch. I heard his laughter that meant that he had noticed my desire.

"It's our right as Assassins. We are allowed to satisfy any of our base urges so to prevent our darker sides from bubbling over. We are allowed to indulge our desire in any way we want, and you wouldn't be able to say... no."

Then, while he massaged my implant with one hand, he carefully injected me four times. I barely felt them as my body was too busy focusing on the intense feelings that his other hand was causing. Then Randy gently kissed me on the spot where he had injected me, and he pushed me face down onto the bed.

"Not tonight, little one. You're too exhausted for such games." His low voice sent a shiver down my spine. "But when you're feeling better, you'll be mine. Repeatedly. Remember that."

Then he left me, and I quickly dropped off to sleep while he reported to my Master.


Ed Ryan, General.

"Report, Assassin." Lyta was sitting at my feet, and I was stroking her hair. No doubt Randy knew that little gesture meant that I was nervous about his report, but while I was hoping I was wrong, I knew it was doubtful. "Perhaps, it would be better?" I nodded toward the Avatar who immediately understood that she was to make herself scarce. "Lyta. Leave my quarters and go to Randy-Assassin's. You will attend to him there when he returns."

Brusquely, I ordered her and she left quickly, while Randy suddenly smiled in delighted surprise.

"Thank you, Master." He nodded his head in acknowledgement of my gift.

"Gideon?" I asked.

"You are correct, Captain. He IS acting strangely. I took the liberty of lying to him, that you were busy with the Avatar when he called for your help earlier today." Randy grinned again, his face seemingly far too innocent for the Lucifer that lurked beneath his façade.

"I understand, and approve, though I regret the necessity." I didn't like bending the truth or lying to my those that were under my command, but Gideon was acting strangely, and I needed confirmation from Randy that it wasn't just an old man's paranoid thoughts. Randy was almost as good as a Spy, for he had been trained to watch, observe and catalog by the Guides, looking for any minute weaknesses or cracks to exploit. And he was better than a Spy, for he was completely loyal to me rather than the Guides.

"I treated his Avatar, who being young and apparently badly trained, became feverish due to the battle. Claiming that I needed his Avatar's biorhythms, I gained access to his computer. While I accessed that information, I pulled his computer log since he was rescued. What files he was accessing, and other things. Accidentally," again, the smile of the shark. "I placed a virus, so that if and when the Inquisitors attempt to access his computer log, it will cause the log to self-destruct. They will be unable to trace it back to me, as it appears it was due to a corrupt data crystal."

"Wonderful. You are highly skilled, Assassin."

"I will give you the information that I retrieved, so you may analyze it, but I am concerned with what he was accessing. His personnel logs, his personal log, and any public information that was available on you and myself. Information on Avatars, universal history for the last millennia especially in regards to Earth, The Guides, and The Others, and he seemed to be focusing on the data that was collected during his recent accident. It was almost as though he was trying to quiz himself in preparation for any questions."

"You played cards?" I had advised Randy to play several hands with Gideon, in the hopes that he might grow complacent and slip.

"Yes, and I specifically tested him, on information that he should know. Slight distortions in our personal history that he should have picked up on, and yet he did not. I called Hal McDonald, Harry and he did not comment. There were several other fabrications that he did not catch or comment on."

Ah. Interesting. But this information led to a more troublesome problem. I stretched and scratched my bad shoulder, giving my Assassin a questioning look. Had he been... implanted, was what I was asking. One of Randy's surprising gifts was the ability to detect the Organic Overseers that the Guides implanted on unfortunate souls. I knew for a fact that several of my current crew had them, and I was always careful around them, knowing that if they learned too much, an unfortunate accident would have to take place.

No. A slight shake of Randy's head meant that the Guides weren't the causes of any changes in Matthew, as I doubted that if they had remediated him, that he'd be free of their control.

Matthew, old friend, if you're still the man that once served onboard the Alexander, be careful of your Assassin for she has been given an Overseer.

What then? What the hell happened to Matthew Gideon? More importantly, could I still continue to trust him? I had a inkling that soon all hell was going to break loose, and I needed to know who I could trust, and who I couldn't.

I dismissed my Assassin, and I wondered, not for the first time nor for the last, that when I died would Maggie and our children be there to greet me? Or would they be so repelled by what I had been forced to become, that I would be greeted only by the souls of those that I had killed?

When I died, I knew that Randy would be quickly terminated, despite my suspicions on what his rank was among his guild, and I wondered how my spoiled Lyta would deal with her new Master, who wouldn't pamper and coddle her like a lonely man had done.

And not for the first time, I wished I had died on Cheron with my wife and children.

Excalibur. John Matheson.

He caught me in a hallway, and Matthew Gideon smiled at me. It was a smile that didn't reach his eyes and it had been the first personality change that I had noticed. I hadn't mentioned it to the others when I had listed the changes in my Captain. How could I glibly tell them that what distressed me most about the changes in my Captain was that where once there had been friendship in his hazel eyes, there now existed nothing but contempt and derision?

"Lt. Matheson," the Matthew that wasn't my Matthew gave me a challenging look. "I think the two of us need to discuss your recent performance. It has left much to be desired in my judgement, and I am... concerned... about how your attitude is affecting the rest of the crew."

He knew that I had noticed his recent personality change.

"Let's go to your quarters, so we can private."

{1 And so it Begins} {2 Captain-Master & Executive Officer} {3 Captain-Master & Assassin} {4 Battle Fatigue} {5 Story of an Avatar} {6 Story of a Captain-Master} {7 Interlude} {8 General-Master & Assassin} {9 Babylon 5} {10 Lines are Drawn} {11 Alliances are Made} {12 Seeds of Rebellion} {13 The Storm Breaks} {14 Battle of the Light Brigade} {15 "Theirs but to Do and Die"} {16 "Valley of Death"} {17 "Jaws of Death"} {18 Finale}

{The Main Gate} {HomePage} {Wytches World} {We are Family} {A Little Artistic Licence} {No, we don't mean "A"riadne} {Our Home Is Our Castle} {The Witches' Diary} {Witches Familiars} {The Gateway} {Webrings}