Secrets of the Soul

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"Secrets of the Soul"
Babylon 5 episode
Episode no.Season 5
Episode 7
Directed byTony Dow
Written byJ. Michael Straczynski
Production code508
Original air dateMarch 4, 1998
Guest appearance(s)

Robin Atkin Downes (Byron)
Fiona Dwyer (Kirrin)
Jack Hannibal (Peter)
Stuart McLean (Carl)
Jana Robbins (Ambassador Tal)

Episode chronology
← Previous
"Strange Relations"
Next →
"Day of the Dead"
List of Babylon 5 episodes

"Secrets of the Soul" is an episode from the fifth season of the science fiction television series Babylon 5.


As part of Franklin's efforts to make a comprehensive database of alien diseases for the Interstellar Alliances, he begins asking those aliens already aboard the station for their help. He approaches Ambassador Tal of the Hyach requesting their medical recovers. Tal's assistant Kirrin is adamant that Franklin be prepared to die to protect the secrecy of their medical history, but Tal calms her down and agrees to provide Franklin the files. As Franklin reviews the records, he finds they only go back about 800 years, despite the Hyach having had advanced technology for over seven millennia. Reviewing other records related to the Hyach, he finds a few references to the "Hyach-doh", and correlates that to records from other races related to that term. He approaches Tal and Kirrin, revealing that he has determined that the Hyach-doh were a subspecies of the Hyach, similar to human's neanderthals. Tal affirms Franklin's findings, stating that around 800 years ago, the Hyach feared that there was too much in-breeding with the Hyach-doh and proceeded to systematically wipe out the race, keeping this information out of their records. However, this has had an unintended consequence in that the Hyach birthrate had dramatically lowered, and in time, the Hyach will become extinct. Franklin suspects there was something in the Hyach-doh's genetic makeup that was needed to sustain the Hyach, and expresses remorse for the genocide of the Hyach-doh.

Meanwhile, Byron and Lyta greet a new arrival of telepaths to the station, including Peter, a young man with telekinetic abilities. As they take the telepaths to their space, they are met by a group of men led by Carl, who are fearful of the telepaths and seem ready to use force to get them off the station. Byron encourages Carl to hit him several times, and then asks him rhetorically if any of those punches were different from the others, and what he would expect to get out of further violence. Later, Carl and his men find Peter alone and try to fight him. Peter tries to fight back but is overwhelmed and heavily injured in the fight. Byron arrives before station security can, and Byron projects images of fire into Carl's mind, unrattling him. By the time Zack arrives, he is forced to take Byron into custody, while Peter's body is raced to medlab. Without Byron's oversight, the other telepaths on the station act as one to locate Carl and his men, killing Carl and mentally wounding another. Byron insists that if he had not been taken custody, he could have stopped it.

Lyta returns with Byron to his living area. The two realize they have fallen for each other, and want to spend the night together, though Lyta warns him that with their telepathic barriers lowered while they become intimate, Byron may experience what she has seen. As the two get close, images from Lyta's time on the Vorlon homeworld are projected not only to Byron but to the other telepaths, revealing that nearly all telepaths are a result of Vorlon manipulation of their genes in preparation to fight the Shadows. After they recover, Byron vows that while the Vorlons are gone, he will hold the Alliance responsible for what the Vorlons did, and demand that the telepaths be given a homeworld of their own.

Arc significance[edit]

  • Through Lyta, Byron and his telepaths are aware of the Vorlons' role in their development.

External links[edit]