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and followed Turval, noticing that the other two Minbari had disappeared altogether. He entered another room, this one was square and half the size of the Crucible Chamber. On a plinth at its centre, neatly laid out as though delivered by the quartermaster himself, was a uniform.

'Please don the uniform, and then you may rest. Your journey has been a long one. Perhaps longer than you know.' Turval motioned towards the plinth. Vance approached and, without hesitation, dressed in the strange new uniform: plain black; leggings, tunic and boots (along with unexpectedly comfortable underwear); and the fit was perfect. Vance ran his hand across the coarse material and noticed that despite the rough texture, it did not make a sound.

When he turned, Turval held the door open to yet another area of the academy. Vance followed him down a long corridor, passing several open rooms containing meditating Minbari, until they eventually came to an open dormitory. While the room had no door, it looked fairly comfortable.

Silently, Turval motioned to an empty bed, gave his customary curt nod, hands placed together in the usual manner, and quickly left. Vance saw that all the dorm's other occupants were asleep, fully clothed. Even their boots were still on. He also noticed that every bed was slanted at a forty-five-degree angle. This particular legend of Minbari culture had been bandied around for some time amongst the guys at EarthForce, but Vance had always put it down to idle speculation and exaggeration. Now it appeared true.

Carefully, Vance climbed onto one of the beds and lay flat on his back. At first he was comfortable enough, considering he was fully clothed and didn't even have so much as a sheet to keep the draft out. Then, as he began to lapse into an exhausted slumber,
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