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analysis," she protested. "I..."

At that moment, as if sensing that he was in the midst of a conversation that couldn't possibly come to a mutually acceptable conclusion, Sheridan's comlink beeped. He tapped it and said, "Sheridan, go."

Corwin's voice filtered over the link. "Captain, we've got a ship from IPX coming in through the gate."

Ivanova said, "Interplanetary Expeditions?" She shook her head in amazement. "That was fast."

But Zack shrugged in that tough-to-surprise, blase manner he had. "I figured they'd hear about this pretty quick. They've got sources everywhere."

These little tidbits of information weren't exactly what Sheridan needed to hear ... neither the fact of IPX's arrival, nor the concern that somebody in his staff or on the station was blabbing to an Earth-connected organization about Babylon 5 business. "Did you tell them we don't have anything to do with Earth anymore?" he asked Corwin over the link.

"Confirmed. But one of the passengers is still asking to speak with you."

Sheridan tried not to let out the sigh that filled him. He nearly succeeded. "All right... my office, twenty minutes." He toggled off the comlink and turned to Ivanova and Zack, and as he did so his mind was already racing to try and determine just how he could turn this particular development to his advantage.

He could, of course, simply blow them off, but that seemed rather wasteful. And his late wife, Anna, had done work for IPX. From experience, Sheridan knew they didn't blow off easily. Other possibilities suggested themselves, and he had every intention of trying to take advantage of them if it were at all feasible. "If you'll excuse me, I think I have to do some old-fashioned horse-trading." With a "carry on" nod of his head to them, he turned on his
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