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Beyond the Light
Episode I
(S:AAB/Babylon 5/X-files/Transformers)
by Weiwen

"Winslow! Chankowitz! Woodiak! Nelson!"

Hands on the gun, thumbs on the trigger. Spewing fire like an avenging
angel.

But it wasn't enough.

There was one more ship, and it was heading straight for him.

And in that instant before death, as Paul Wang knew he was about to
die... his mind wandered. And thought about all the stories he'd ever
heard about death.

About how time seemed to slow down. About the tunnel of light. And
then, the final meeting between him and his Maker...

And as if on cue, the river of time slowed... to a trickle.

Tick.

Damn, he thought, so it *is* true. Too bad he couldn't tell anyone
else about it. Make a great story.

Tock.

But his life wasn't flashing before his eyes, was it? All he could see
was the Chig ship, a flaming piece of junk that was about to take him
with it. Killed by debris. Hell of a way to go.

Tick.

OK, maybe he shouldn't have said that. The "H" word. Anyhow, if
everything that was supposed to happen DID happen, then that tunnel of
light would be coming in right about...

Tock.

Light burst out of the darkness of space, obliterated everything in
his sight... the river of stars, and flaming Chiggy, everything. Wang
threw up his arms to cover his eyes, but what he really wanted to do
was watch the tunnel. Probably the only time he'd ever get to watch
this happen. Sort of like a light show before finally meeting God.

Tick.

Damn. Really should have said "Hell". Probably shouldn't have said
"damn" too. God wasn't going to be happy.

Tock.

And Wang felt himself being lifted up from the deck of the ISSAPC, and
then being stretched out and p-u-l-l-e-d in to the bright light... and
even as he disappeared, he could * feel * the heat of explosion as the
flaming Chiggy flambe sliced into the ISSAPC like it was tinfoil, and
ignited whatever oxygen was left in the cargo compartment...

		*		*		*

Time snapped back to normal.

Wang felt himself topple forward, and hit the ground with a loud
metallic thud.

Metallic? He opened his eyes, but the light had fried his retina,
leaving him nothing but shadows.

Blinded, his other senses took over. The ground with hard and cold,
almost like the deck of the Saratoga, but less polished. The smell was
of sweat and crowds. And the voices... a sort of anxious background
chattering, like a party crowd that had just been interrupted by
gatecrashers of the worse kind.

For the first time, Wang entertained the thought that he wasn't in
heaven anymore...

Strong hands gripped him under the arm, and lifted him up. The sudden
change in posture made him dizzy, and he pitched foreword again.

"Security to Medlab! Get someone down to the Zolocco right now! " The
voice was loud, too close to his ear. Wang winced at the sound. But
the shadows were clearing up, and the first thing that came into focus
was the face of his helper. A bald, fleshy sort of face. Fleshy, not
with fat, but with muscle... and authority. And two dark eyes that
were even now looking into his, probing for an answer.

Wang was helped against a wall, and supported upright on that. The man
was now talking to him.

"Who are you, buddy? How did you get here?"

Wang croaked a question in reply. "Where am I?"

A man looked at him quizzically. "You don't know?"

Wang shook his head and repeated his question.

This time, the man answered. Except that the answer made no sense to
him.

"Pal, you're on Earth Alliance Station Babylon 5. And after you're
fixed up, you're going to tell me how you just popped out that wall
there..."

Copyright Weiwen 1998

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