The White star dodged as the Shadow vessel fired at it. "Something's wrong," Tessa said, "They're supposed to be a lot more impressive than that."
Tara thought about the information Willow had found about her implants, how they were necessary for someone to be able to fully control a Shadow Vessel. "If the person controlling it hadn't been prepared then that'd explain why it's shooting so badly." Then Tara realised what she was saying, that it had to be either Willow or Warren controlling it. She started to panic a moment till she realised that she could sense Willow on the planet surface. "I guess this is why you wanted me along." She turned towards the viewer, concentrating on the Shadow Vessel. Focused on trying to find the mind that was controlling it. She struggled to get a hold of it with her mind and to freeze it. Tara collapsed as her mind was flooded with images of death and pain.
Tessa moved to catch hold of Tara. Turning to the gunner she said, "Are the primary weapons ready?"
"Then what are you waiting for, a written invitation? Kill that thing!"
The Shadow Vessel shuddered as the White Star opened fire upon it. After a minute it began to break apart, it's limbs breaking into pieces.
Tara gave a small sob of pain.
Holding her Tessa said, "It's okay Tara. It's dead, it's dead."
"This is shuttle one to White star, we're setting down on the planet surface."
As the shuttle settled down on the surface a door swung downwards and a pair of men moved down it. Into the small building. Going through into the first room they found Willow sitting cross legged on the floor.
Looking up Willow said, "Well you took your time."
Once the shuttle had returned to the White star Willow and Tara went to a meeting with Tessa.
"They cleared the place out pretty thoroughly," Tessa said when she met up with Willow and Tara.
Willow nodded, "The only thing left behind was that Shadow Vessel."
"Since we can assume it wasn't left behind by accident, did they intend for him to use it?"
"Maybe, clear the area so they could come and pick me up."
"I take it he didn't know the affect it would have on him." Seeing that neither Willow or Tara understood she went on, "President Sheridan once told me that his second wife, Anna," Tessa noticed Tara tense slightly at the name, but didn't comment on it, "was put into one of those ships. When she was taken out again her personality had been totally destroyed."
"No, he seemed pretty eager," Willow said, "So he probably didn't know that."
"But why do they want you?" Tara asked.
"Surely because you're a technomage," Tessa answered.
"Warren didn't know I was, so I guess Neotech don't either."
"Did you say Neotech?" Tessa said.
"Yes, that's who he works for."
"That's something else I wanted to talk to you about. Tara remember I said that recently elements within Earth gov have been causing trouble for the alliance. They've started using the presence of these Shadow Vessels, and this attack for their cause.
"So they're opportunists, aren't most politicians?" Willow asked.
"The person making the most noise is a senator Morganson." Tessa stopped a moment, a scowl on her face.
"I take it you don't like him."
"He used to be high up in the Clarke Administration, on Mars. When Clarke was overthrown, amnesty was offered to everyone who hadn't committed any specific crimes. Morganson had done some terrible things while on Mars, but we could never prove it. So I've been keeping a close eye on him, looking for evidence. One thing I found was his largest backer is a company called Neotech."
"So Neotech get hold of a load of surplus Shadow tech and go on the rampage. Then their favourite polician starts using these attacks to further his cause," Tara summarised, "Is that it? Is Neotech just using the technology to help this Morganson?"
"Well destabalising the Alliance isn't something to be sniffed at."
Willow raised her hand, "I have one question, where do I fit in?"
As Willow and Tara headed back to their quarters Willow said, "Warren said he tried to kill you."
"Yeah, he said it was orders."
Willow frowned, "So Neotech want you dead? I really don't like that."
"I'm not too happy about the idea."
"Well don't worry, they'll have to go through me first."
Tara squeezed Willow's hand, "Thanks."
"I couldn't help notice you flinch slightly when she mentioned Anna Sherridan."
Tara smiled, trying to not let her nervousness show, "And I was thinking that I managed to cover it up."
"So what's up?"
Tara paused a moment, trying to work out how to put this. Finally she decided the best way was to just say it and get it over with."She killed my mother."
It was a while before Willow could respond, "She what?"
"Not intentionally. What happened was she accidentally activated an artifact which she had found on a dig. It turned out to be a weapon, an anti telepath weapon. It killed most telepaths within a five mile radius."
Willow took Tara's hand and gave it a slight squeeze, "I'm sorry."
Zack entered his security code into the door panel. As the door slid open he drew his PPG and started in to the room, followed by another security guard. He noticed a beeping sound from near the door. Looking round he saw it was from a small device attached to the wall. The beeping was growing faster and more urgent.
Turning Zack grabbed the other guard and threw them both out of the room. A moment later there was an explosion and the room was filled with flames.
Tara woke up with a jerk. She had had a dream about her meeting in the zen garden. Getting out of bed, Tara went over to the ships computer. After the dream she had a feeling that wasn't just a chance encounter. Tara switched on the computer and started a search. Muttering to herself, "What was his name again?" Then to the computer she said, "Search for a minbari called Neroon." After a few moments a match came up. As she read it she felt herself go numb. "Why do I keep seeing dead people?" Tara asked herself.