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Marichka's Story Part 5
*This story content is her sole property and is not for distribution*
*The character and place names are the property of J. Michael Straczynski, Warner Brothers and TNT and we are using them only for entertainment purposes.*
 6 Somewhere On Minbar

    On this day, the handful of initiates that had made it through training became Rangers.  Minbari, Pahkmara, Drazi, Narns and Humans were all present and accounted for.  The voices said in unison, in Minbari, what made them who they were.

        I am a Ranger.
        We walk in the dark places no other will enter.
        We stand on the bridge and no one may pass.
        We live for the One.
        We die for One.

7 - That Same City, Z'Ha'Dum, Three Years Ago

    Marichka paced her room.  Erik simply sat and watched her.
    "I don't know what you're worried about," Erik finally said.
    "It's been days.  We should have heard something by now.  I told him he should have left Centauri Prime.  I knew something was going to happen.  He knew it.  Why didn't he leave?" she rambled, clearly agitated and growing worse by the minute.
    "What is Morden to you anyway?"
    She stopped and looked at him.  "Erik, what are you implying?"
    "That, perhaps, none of us really know the nature of your relationship with him."  He followed that with an arrogant smile.  She looked at him for a moment, then her eyes narrowed, and she back handed him across the face.  "You little . . . you're just jealous because he's got a bigger--"
    Three Shadows entered and Marichka turned to them sharply.
    Not a word was spoken, in Shadow or English, but the point was communicated.  Morden was dead.  Executed by Mollari, who also rigged a bomb to a Shadow base on Salini and took it out.
    A Shadow rose a pincher.  She saw something dangling from it.  The crystal Morden wore.  Another Shadow stepped forward.  It rose a pincher and stretched the chain.  They lifted it over her head and placed it gently around her neck.  "Now, it is yours," came the short,  Shadow assertion.
    Her eyes were the only thing that gave away her shock.  Her lips quivered.  A simple, thin, veil of tears covered her eyes.  Never enough to fall.
    The darkness reached out, clasping on Shadow from the light and to its home.
    Another Shadow was cast against the light to take its place.