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Old January 10 2013, 01:44 AM   #37
Re: The Hunted (nBSG)

The captains of all six ships in Scorpia’s tiny flotilla sat around the conference table in the main briefing room. And they were accompanied by the senior staff and officers of the Battlestar itself.

“Gods,” whispered Sam Caldwell. “We provoked this? The government fracking provoked this?”

And sitting beside her Jon Namer was shaking his head as well at the revelation. Along with several of Mathias’s own officers seated at the table.

“For which we have only the uncorroborated word of a Cylon agent,” the Commander said. “Even were it true, one border violation does not justify the genocide of more than thirty-one billon human beings,” and his voice was cold. “Had they come to the Armistice Station once—just once—and laid out their evidence there, the government would have fallen and the Fleet would have been reigned in.”

“Maybe,” interrupted Namer, as Mathias drew in a breath at the unexpected statement. “But you have been gone for two years—and I lived here during that time, Commander. Adar used the Fleet where he couldn’t get the Law to enforce his will—he was on the verge of becoming a dictator and the Fleet was letting him. Your Admiral Corman was fine with letting Adar get away with violations of the Articles of Colonization, so long as he was getting brand-spanking new Vipers and Battlestars. Don’t lie to yourself, Commander—there were plenty of Colonial officers who wanted a new war to distract the people from domestic problems. And the damn thing is, you would probably have kicked their ass back into the nearest star—judging by what this ship alone did to those Basestars over Caprica. And your assumption that it would have gone public is just that—Adar would have squashed this information leaking out. He had imprisoned journalists for far lesser ‘breaches of Colonial security’ after all.”

Mathias held his tongue, and then he nodded as he really considered what the Saggitaron had said. “You are correct, Mister Namer,” he forced himself to say in a polite tone. “But even so, it makes no difference—what the Cylons did was overkill; it would be like using a nuclear weapon to drain a swamp next to a city so to get rid of a mosquito problem. And they have been using humans to experiment upon for the past four decades, plus they either knowingly or through an agent, violated human space before the alleged incident with Valkyrie.”

He paused and looked over the table, at each one of the men and women assembled here. “We cannot change the past—we must now look to the future. We know that there are other survivors out there—including at least two more Battlestars. Now we have to find them. Doctor Sarris.”

“Yes, Commander?”

“I want your team working on trying to locate Kobol—use whatever assets you need, drawing from the scrolls, computer archives, and the Cylon prisoner. Once we reach Kobol, then we will find a means to keep following Galactica and her fleet.” How, I don’t have the slightest idea, he thought to himself.

“Of course, Commander. We will start work on it immediately.”

“Colonel Jayne, you have assembled a report on the Joyita?”

“Yes, Sir,” he said as he stood and lifted a remote. “The archive records confirmed most of the story told by Brother Cavil, as regarding the Joyita. Fourteen years ago it was involved in what was classified as an FTL malfunction, resulting the loss of fifty of the passengers aboard. Two of the survivors managed to make repairs to jump the ship back within range of Caprica SAR almost a month after it went missing. Provisions, atmosphere, water—all reflected the length of time that they had been gone. But there is one major discrepancy between the Cylon's statement and our records—there were not twelve survivors, there were thirteen.”

“Why would he lie about something so easy to check?” mused Jon Banacek.

“Why indeed,” answered Mathias. “And Brother Cavil seemed stunned when we said there were thirteen onboard—the insisted there had only been twelve. It is my opinion, and that of Colonel Jayne, his surprise was not feigned—and he failed to recognize the thirteenth survivor when we showed him images. I play a mean hand of Triad—and he wasn’t bluffing.”

The compartment was quiet as those present digested this nugget of information.

Doctor Sarris cleared his throat. And Mathias nodded. “It strikes me that as their memory can be transferred and down-loaded, it might be possible to alter it. Certainly, this part where the Cylon prisoner speaks about ‘wiping’ the memory of the survivors implies that it can be done to them.”

“Agreed, Doctor, but that begs the question who wiped it—for what reason. Speaking of which, the originals of these thirteen may not be aware that they are Cylons. But Brother Cavil said there is a code sequence that will unlock that memory—we will be holding Cavil and the other two to ensure their own safety and to keep this ship and your ships safe.”

“We have more Cylons in the flotilla?” asked Sam.

Mathias only nodded. “Continue, Tom.”

The Colonel drew in a deep breath. “The survivors, ladies and gentlemen,” he said as he clicked the remote. “Brother John Cavil—a Caprican who belonged to monastic sect serving as assistants to the priesthood.” And the face of a younger Cavil appeared on the screen. “As you can see, the copies age at the same rate as humans.” Click.

“Leoben Conoy, whose criminal record reflects a life devoted to himself and no others.” Click.

“D’Anna Biers, a journalist who rose to the top of her profession.” Click.

“Simon O’Neil, medical doctor.” Click.

“Aaron Doral . . .,” but the Colonel was cut off by Namer.

“FRACK! That bastard works for Adar—worked for Adar,” he said with a grimace. “He knows all of the administrations dirtiest secrets.”

Aaron Doral,” continued Colonel Jayne, glaring at the Saggitaron, “a minor public relations specialist who rose to power with the Adar administration.” Click.

“Shelly Godfrey, a scientist in graduate school at the time of the accident with Joyita. When Scorpia departed, she was a mid-level research scientist attached to the Fleet Advanced Projects Bureau.”

And a groan went around the table from the Fleet officers. FAPB controlled access to every classified bit of information in the Colonial Fleet—and all ship and small craft upgrades. “Exactly, gentlemen and ladies, if she was activated that would explain the backdoor into the CNP program.” Click.

“Tory Foster, political activist. Also known to be associated with the Adar Administration.” Click.

“Sharon Valerii,” he said as the picture of a twelve or thirteen year old girl appeared. “The Cylons produced full mature clones of this individual, but they stopped this one’s growth at her natural age. She joined the Colonial Fleet as a pilot two months before we departed from the Colonies.” Click.

“Samuel T. Anders,” and jaws dropped around the table.

“Lords of Kobol—he fought the Cylons on Caprica, Colonel! He formed and led the resistance!” Denise Church exclaimed.

“Yes. And he—along with Tory Foster and the next three—were those models that Brother Cavil said were too ‘attached’ to the human condition. All five of them are unique—no more were produced. He still might be activated at any time, however.” Click.

“Galen Tyrol. An enlisted man in the Fleet. Promoted to the rank of Senior Chief—last post before our departure was Deck Chief aboard . . . Galactica.”

“Major Saul Tigh. Colonial Fleet Officer and veteran of the First Cylon War. One hell of a pilot in his day, but his record shows he had a drinking problem. He and Chief Tyrol managed to repair the shuttle enough to get it back to orbit—after which he was promoted to Colonel and served as the XO aboard first Valkyrie and then Galactica.” Click.

“Ellen Tigh. Wife of Saul Tigh.” Click.

“And our mystery man. The Thirteenth Cylon. Only known by the name of Daniel. Seven years old during the crash, he lost both parents—adopted into the state foster program, vanished on Tauron at the age of fourteen. No more information known.”

Sam and Jon stared at each other, then at the picture. “I think he’s aboard my ship, Colonel,” she whispered. “Commander, don’t hurt him—he’s been hurt before. He’s never done anything to put us in danger.”

“I understand, Major Caldwell. But this is for his own safety as well as ours,” Mathias stood. “We are not going to become the evils that we fought against, people. Not like Admiral Cain and her crew did—these people have done nothing to us . . . yet. I cannot take the chance that they might. And I will not allow them to come to harm from people seeking to stone the first Cylon they can lay their hands on. For now, we need to isolate them. Later, we can discuss other options—but the safety of the ships and civilians aboard them comes first.”

“Next jump is in two hours—make certain your navigators receive and confirm the coordinates. Thank you for coming aboard. Dismissed.”

Last edited by MasterArminas; January 10 2013 at 02:10 AM.
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