Wing Commander Academy "On Both Your Houses" Premise

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On Both Your Houses Premise
WCA On Both Your Houses Premise.png
Creator Mark Edens
Download Download
Filesize 1075 kB
Date April 9, 1996
Pages 4

On Both Your Houses - Premise is the earliest known plan for the "On Both Your Houses" episode of Wing Commander Academy.



"On Both Your Houses"

Premise (revised 4/9/96)

ARCHER, MANIAC and MAVERICK engage in a dogfight with a Kilrathi patrol. Two of the Kilrathi ships are destroyed, but the remaining ship is damaged when Archer hesitates to fire and losses her target lock. The damaged Kilrathi ship escapes to a nearby planet. Archer, Maniac, and Maverick pursue the ship to the hot, cloud-covered planet of dense tropical forest. Vectoring in on the last known coordinates, they estimate that he's crash-landed near a small Confederation biological research facility.

When Archer, Maniac, and Maverick land at the research station, the head of the facility, DR. BRONWYN SING, says she doesn't know anything about the downed Kilrathi pilot. Maniac and Maverick suggest that they should remain at the research station for a few days to make sure that Dr. Sing and her staff are safe (Dr. Sing runs the research facility with two other human staff -- the rest of the staff is robotic, including some robotic guards). Archer thinks Maniac and Maverick are offering to stay because Dr. Sing is a beautiful woman. Dr. Sing tries to decline the offer of assistance. She says the Kilrathi must have crawled off into the brush like some wounded animal. They'll never find him in the thick jungle. Besides, her research station is not militarily significant -- she's searching for new medicines in the flora and fauna of the biologically rich planet.

Much to Archer's disgust, Dr. Sing uses her beauty and intelligence to distract Maniac and Maverick -- and to sound them out about their true feelings about the Kilrathi. She cleverly exploits their rivalry, playing them off against each other, keeping them from searching too hard for the Kilrathi pilot.

On her own, Archer finds the wrecked Kilrathi fighter -- and evidence of some kind of struggle around the ship. She suspects that Dr. Sing knows more about the Kilrathi pilot than she's letting on. She tells her suspicions to Maniac and Maverick, who are unwilling to believe her. Maniac accuses Archer of being jealous of Sing, which Archer dismisses with contempt.

Secretly trying to learn more about Sing's research, Archer finds herself under attack by the installation's robot guards when she gets too close to a special, heavily-guarded laboratory. She manages to fight her way into the lab -- and finds the Kilrathi pilot. Archer is about to be blasted by more robot guards, when Maniac, Maverick, and Sing arrive. Sing shuts down the robot guards. Dr. Sing apologizes emphatically for the guards' lethal violence, passing the attack off as an error. She also apologizes for having to lie to them. She says her computer models had suggest some of the compounds she's discovered might be most effective in a species like the Kilrathi. She needed the Kilrathi pilot to test the compounds. Perhaps the medicines she has discovered can be a bridge between the two cultures, a peace offering.

Maverick still hopes that some day Terrans and Kilrathi may live in peace, but this is not the way. The Kilrathi pilot will have to be turned over to military authorities and treated as a true prisoner of war. Despite his attraction to Dr. Sing, Maniac is even more emphatic -- the thought of using another living being as a guinea pig gives him the creeps. They'll leave at dawn to take the Kilrathi pilot to the Tiger's Claw as a prisoner. Strangely, Dr. Sing makes no further attempt to talk them into letting her keep the Kilrathi.

That night, the Kilrathi pilot escapes. He makes an attempt to destroy the installation, but is foiled by Maverick and Maniac. Archer discovers that Dr. Sing arranged the escape herself. Sing has discovered a virus deadly to the Kilrathi and has infected the pilot with it. She wants him to escape and spread the disease to the Kilrathi fleet -- perhaps even to Kilrah itself. Beneath her charming exterior, Sing is incredibly cold-blooded. She regards the Confederation's refusal to engage in biological warfare as suicidal stupidity, a relic of chivalry in warfare, the outmoded concept that war is a game of dominance that can be "played" according to rules. To Sing, the Terran-Kilrathi war is biological -- a deadly competition between two species, only one of which can survive.

The Kilrathi pilot steals Maniac's fighter and makes an escape attempt. Maverick and Archer take off in pursuit. As the Kilrathi nears the jump node, Archer can't bring herself to fire -- the Kilrathi pilot is already a victim of the war, doomed by Dr. Sing's lethal virus. Maverick cuts his fighter in front of hers and fires at the escaping Kilrathi. The Kilrathi's ship is hit and explodes just as it is entering the jump node.

Later, in the hangar deck of the Tiger's Claw, Sing is brought in aboard a shuttle under arrest. Tolwyn congratulates Maverick and Archer for stopping the Kilrathi pilot's escape. If the Kilrathi pilot had gotten away, the virus would have spread among the Kilrathi population and led to an escalation of the war with biological weapons as the Kilrathi retaliated. They've saved millions of lives -- both Terran and Kilrathi. Tolwyn says he intended to prepare an official commendation for their Academy field. Tolwyn is surprised when Archer asks him not to file a commendation for her -- "Cadet Blair brought down the Kilrathi, sir. He's the only one who deserves it."

Puzzled by her request, Tolwyn never-the-less accedes to her wishes -- he would never force honors on someone who felt they didn't deserve them. He dismisses Maverick and Archer. As Archer walks off across the hangar deck, Tolwyn watches her thoughtfully.