Pilot informs D'Argo, finally, that the approaching vessel is a Command Carrier." Sikozu's like, Fuckin' see? "We've done all Crichton could ask of us. We've stayed here too long. We must starburst now." Chiana remembers in a flash the signature converter they bought from Rekka. "Like we did before." Rygel points out that this is fahrbot, considering that it'll turn Moya into a Scarran freighter, which the PKs would of course attack. "We won't let them get that close," she says. "Look, if they long-range scan us, they'll move off, because we're not Moya. It's worth a shot." (But also, how about this? THEY HAVE SEVERAL COCKADOODIE SIGNATURE OPTIONS, OF WHICH PILOT IS DEMONSTRABLY AWARE.) D'Argo nods about that idea, and Pilot gives him 30 seconds to decide. D'Argo agrees to the vote: "Do we starburst, or do we initiate engine signature change?" My side, your side: Sikozu and Rygel vote to starburst, Chiana votes to stay; Pilot hesitantly says that he and Moya -- of course -- both vote to stay. Sikozu and Rygel close their eyes.
"Initiate the signature change," D'Argo orders. What do you do when you can't get out? Turn into something else: change shape. Ask Aeryn, who's shape-shifting like a motherfucker right now. The thing that makes you awesome is the thing that makes you suck, but what the show's smart enough to say -- and I never am -- is that the opposite is just as true.
Case in point: Scorpius, who asks John if, given the differences they keep finding on weirdo Moya, if this will even work. John nods: "It's what happened before. Pip got killed, Stark channeled the Scarran while he was crossing her over." Not Aeryn, not even Chiana: Pip. Just a letter or two from it. My side, your side. Don't forgive him for this episode; he wouldn't want you to. Chiana and Stark are tied to some crates near the corpse of Rygel. "You or me?" Scorpius asks. No difference. John nods to himself and walks slowly towards them. "I'll do it."
This is the Chiana that Aeryn could be: everything on the surface. Nowhere to hide when things go south. If you're a basket case all the time, it's a strength: there's nowhere else to go. No way to hide your love, your desire. Nowhere for your pride to stash your joy. She is open, and she is beautiful. And she is terrified. "Hey, Crichton, untie me? You know...I know, I...always tie up people I like," she says, cracking a joke. Looking down at her shaking hands. Stark shakes her head, quivering all over, close to breaking. "If you kill her, I won't help you. I won't cross her over." John crouches and looks into their strange, lovely faces. "Yes you will." Chiana's confused. "What is he talking about? What is he talking about?" Stark or John. What is he talking about? What are they talking about. Stark looks at Chiana, then at the floor. John tries reason: "Look, I know this doesn't make any sense, but...you're gonna die in half an arn, and there's nothing I can do to stop that." (He takes something glorious, this blended, ascended beauty, and makes of it a broken mockery. He takes pain and he adds pain and fear, and all the while he's saying, "This is necessary. This is necessary for me." Not even the fucking Peacekeepers.) Chiana jerks: "What? What do you mean?" Stark stares at him; Chiana declares she's not going to die. "Yes, you are," he says, and stands up, leaving them there on the floor. His capacity for love and his capacity for innocence, even after being broken and used: the truth of the holy body, that Innocence and Experience aren't just a binary, they're a road. From Innocence to Experience, and on into Grace. The place you can't remember heading when you think you've lost everything. Redemption. Chiana stares at the place where he was, crouched. But John's already gone.