Babylon 5 stories
ISN Anchor Desk - Original Short Stories
ISN Aftermath 7/28/01Allison Higgins - "Hix" as she was known back in broadcasting school, and to her fellow anchors - sat in the blue padded chair and stared defiantly into the camera.
"Under Clarkís administration, peace initiatives from Earth stretched to all the colony worlds. Janie, can you honestly say that Sheridan was anything less than a delusional dictator?"
Jane Egon, the senior InterStellar Network News Anchor, repeated the question. "Ms. Higgins, what did Clark offer you to betray your journalistic sense of right and wrong? Why in Godís name would you do such a thing?"
Allison uncrossed her slender legs and stood for a moment, then walked to the water fountain to get a drink.
"This isnít an act for you, is it?"
Janeís face betrayed her confusion. "What do you mean?"
"Itís all a game, Janie. We are puppets for masters who pull our strings. We are their servants. The Shadows, Clark, Psi Corps, all of them." She paused momentarily, then smirked. "You do what you do because of some twisted sense of honor. You think if you tell the whole truth and not sugar-coat it, everyone will be happy and youíll win yet another award.
"Where did your awards get you, Janie? Locked you. You were treated well in your prison, of course, but while you were there, I was being treated to the best of everything - The best houses, ships, foods, freedom.
"Your ideals got you locked away. Mine got fan letters, Janie. Now you tell me who the idiot was."
Allison returned to her seat, a self-satisfied smirk on her face.
"Hix, do you remember college? All the nights studying? Do you even admit that to yourself that it was me that sponsored your admission? Allison, if I hadnít seen that spark of journalistic integrity, I never would have hired you at ISN."
"So what? You did. And you lost a year of your life. Janie, youíve really got some issues. You need to get over it, really."
"Youíre right, Allison. I lost my life, my job, my world. The only thing I didnít lose is my self. And I will not let you take that away from me." She suddenly appeared 20 years older, drained of energy and life.
"Iím tired, Allison. Iím tired of being disassociated with the stories Iím reporting. Iím tired of people who treat what I do as a joke. And Iím tired of people who abuse their power and let it corrupt them.
"I will go now, and I will spend the rest of my life doing the job I love. And when I need a reminder of why I do it, Iíll pull out this vid, and Iíll remember. As for you, youíll spend the rest of your time in this room.
Jane stood, straightened her skirt, and stepped through the door. A small group of five medical and security personnel entered the room upon her departure.
Screams of "Janie! Janie help me!" echoed down the corridor, each one weaker than the last, until they finally ceased altogether.
Jane fell into the compact metal chair at the end of the hall, unable to see any longer from the tears that she could no longer hold inside her.
-- Mitch Obrecht, July 28, 2001.