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On the tenth day...

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"You are smiling, Mollari," I said.

"I am, G'Kar, you are most observant." Mollari exposed his pointed teeth in a disturbing rendition of mirth.

"I do not trust you when you smile."

"But you trust me when I frown? I must be doing something wrong for you to trust me at all!" He shook my shoulder--my right shoulder, near my uninjured eye--and we walked together, the strangest of friends.

"What are you up to?" I asked him. I was answered by the call of Captain Lochley.

"Ambassador Mollari!"

Mollari and I both turned: He in response, I because I would not miss this for worlds. The Captain sounded aggrieved with Mollari, which was always entertaining.

"My dear lady," Mollari said, "how may I be of assistance?"

"That's 'Captain,' not 'lady,'" said Lochley.

"My dear Captain! It is always an unparalleled pleasure," Mollari smiled.

Captain Lochley's eyes narrowed. Humans had such mobile faces that I constantly overreacted during my first contact with them. Now I was quite used to them, but in this case, a little overreaction was in order, I thought. Perhaps a shield. I made a note to drag Mollari in front of myself if the Captain exploded. "I have fourteen complaints lodged against your guests and they've only been here three hours!" Lochley said.

"Did I not warn you, dear lady? Excuse me--dear Captain. My guests are worshipers of Zoora, god of Dance, and as such, I am afraid they move most exuberantly at all times."

"They kicked a security guard in the head."

"We have learned to give them a wide berth," Mollari said.

"Wide berth." She crossed her arms and stared at Mollari, who stood benignly with his most maddening smile turned upon her. This was his favorite game of all and this new Captain had not yet learned how not to play it. "If they can't restrain themselves to a quiet waltz, I want them off this station. They could have given my man a concussion."

"Oh... I could ask that of them," Mollari said, all politeness, "but I'm afraid it would be a grave offense to my government. My guests are quite high-ranking and this is the time of the feast of Zoora when observance is most important! As such, I am very much afraid the question must go to the head of the new Alliance, who handles, I believe, political affairs aboard this station."

Captain Lochley became quite still, quite calm. "All right," she said. "We'll take this to Sheridan." Then she turned and left us.

Mollari and I turned to one another. "As Mr. Garibaldi would say, your ass is grass," I informed him.

Mollari smiled broadly. "We shall see!"

We saw, in fact, not an hour later when we were summoned quite rudely to President Sheridan's office. A security guard came to collect us--or rather, Mollari, but I would not leave his side at that moment for gold.

Lochley stood outside Sheridan's office with an expression I could only interpret as "smug." As we approached, she opened the door, and we saw the situation.

All ten Centauri lords were inside Sheridan's office, observing their religious celebration with ga'naur-like leaps and bounds. A lamp was shattered on the floor. A wall was dented. Sheridan was nowhere to be seen.

"LONDO!" He was, in fact, under his desk.

Mollari ducked an exuberant boot. "Yes, Mr. President?"

"GET IN HERE!"

THE END.

 

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