The two characters on the series by this point that have been on the show the longest are Vila and Avon. Vila appeared in the pilot and Avon in the second episode, and they’ve both been in every episode since then. Sure, Avon was the break-out character that gets the most screentime, but Vila is reliable comic relief and a lot of fun in his own right. Plus, the two seem to annoy each other, though it’s mostly Vila annoys Avon from the looks of things.
What happens when one might try to kill the other?
That’s what happens when a reclusive scientist, Egorian, calls the Scorpio and requests a meeting. He won’t agree to teleporters, so Avon needs to go down in a shuttle. Yes, they apparently have one. Regardless, Avon does negotiate the right to bring one person along since Egorian has his elderly assistant Pinder on hand. Sure, records say Pinder is only 28, but he doesn’t look it. As it is, Avon chooses Vila, reminding the thief that Vila feels safest when he’s with Avon as Avon always gets out alive or something. That works for both Avon and Egorian.
Here’s the deal: Egorian has a superweapon called a Tachyon Funnel. It will destroy anything it zaps. He will trade it for Orac.
Is this man on the level? Well, Orac discovers Egorian used to work for someone high up the Federation chain of command–yes, it is obviously Servalan–so he may not be too friendly after all. Likewise, Egorian lets slip some kind of neutron radiation he was working with aged Pinder 50 years. But, the deal does look good, and Vila at least figures they can use the Tachyon Funnel to get Orac back later anyway.
Or it would be, but there’s a double cross!
Avon gave Egorian a crude fake of Orac!
Wait, that’s not it.
Oh that happened, but the real double cross is…Egorian is still working for Servalan! She’s hanging out in a broom closet or something. Egorian sabotaged the shuttlecraft in unknown ways. It will crash somewhere on the planet when it fails to get out of the atmosphere, and from there, he can easy retrieve the Tachyon Funnel, the real Orac, and even the shuttle. Just Vila and Avon would be dead.
It doesn’t take long for Avon and Vila to notice something is wrong, so realizing they need to dump some weight, they push out anything that isn’t nailed down. That starts to help. They even dump the Tachyon Funnel (probably won’t be able to fix that). Still, they need to dump some extra weight and there doesn’t seem to be enough. That is, until Orac tells Avon that Vila weighs about that much.
Vila hears this and hides. Avon decides to dump Vila out the airlock. It’s the only way for Avon to survive. Same with Orac. The Scorpio can’t pick them up, and they can only be teleported from a stationary position. Really, these two guys will need to decide something soon, and interestingly enough, Vila never thinks to push Avon out instead.
Fortunately, Avon does find the real problem: Egorian slipped a small cube onboard with some dwarf star matter in it. That weighs a lot more than it appears to. Dump that, and both men will live. Small problem: Vila won’t come out of hiding, and that cube is heavy. Avon barely gets it out himself.
Well, Egorian failed. Servalan opts to leave him behind. She only had a two person shuttle to begin with, and Pinder did hear Egorian say he would leave Pinder behind. So, Pinder decides to dose both of them with that fast-aging radiation. Pinder dissolves into a skeleton and Egorian dies of old age.
Serves Egorian right…
As for Vila, he seems to have, well, not forgiven Avon, but he’s talking to him again by episode’s end. Not that Avon cares. He’ll just point out that staying with Avon is always the safest route.