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has lost its way.

The war we fight is not against powers and principalities:

it is against chaos and despair.

Greater than the death of flesh

is the death of hope, the death of dreams.

Against this peril we can never surrender.

-G'QUAN



* * *



August 2260



Chapter 1



They said that Kosh spent too much time among the younger races. They said that he allowed sentimentality to weaken discipline. They said that, in failing to keep himself above the conflict, he revealed how far he had fallen.

Now he would pay the price.

In his simple residence on Babylon 5, Kosh waited. He knew what would happen, as did all the Vorlons. Yet they would do nothing to stop it, and he must do nothing to stop it. He must pay this price, so that others would not.

It was as the Vorlons had always professed: Some must be sacrificed, so that all could be saved.

The fabulists had understood, better than any Vorlon, this harrowing truth at the core of all Vorlon teachings. They had refused alliance with the forces of chaos, had upheld their principles, though it would mean their extinction. They sacrificed themselves for the good of the galaxy. And in so doing, they showed Kosh the way.

For it was not only the younger races who must sacrifice, he now understood, but the Vorlons as well.

All that the others said of him was true. He had spent too much time among the younger races: too much time watching them struggle, under his distant guidance, toward order; too much time watching the enemy undermine any hard-earned progress they made; too much time watching them suffer and die. The rules of engagement, formulated eons ago through the mediation of the First One, dictated that the Vorlons and the maelstrom would launch no direct attacks upon each
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