Hello all. A few quick notes. If I come across harsh I apologize ahead of time, not my intent. And I really do appreciate the comments, it does help my creativity. Oh also thanks for your patience I hope it's not boring.
First I want to thank each and every person that reviewed my story, it motivates me to continue writing. So thank you for that.
Second. I was expecting discussions regarding the capabilities of the CA433 class. So a few of my views on certain points. In regards to the speed of the vessel, while I am aware that at one point the stated speed of the BC303 was either .5 or .6 of light speed, different sources disagree on that point. The fact is that at that speed the ship would suffer from Einsteinian effects, time would slow for them. Also the ships in the Stargate franchise never even came close to that speed in the show. A good example would be when General Hammond ordered the pilot of the Prometheus to ram Anubis's ship. They went to max speed in Earth orbit and closed on the target, when the drones attacked Hammond was able to avoid the collision and all was good in the world. In reality at even .1 C as soon as the pilot pushed the throttle forward the Prometheus would have impacted Anubis. At the stated speed of the CA433 the Suffren could go from Earth to Mars in about eleven minutes. That's not slow. Not mention the fact that they would never need a higher sub-light speed when they could simply go to hyper at the touch of a button, in most cases. The armor. Just because the best armor in the show was the Wraith armor, that doesn't mean it was the best available. Fullerene is real, not a made up name. It has appeared in numerous mainstream Sci-fi as well. Fullerene is a carbon bonding that adds incredible strength to whatever substance it can bond with. Naquadah and Trinium fullerene would almost certainly be incredibly tough, after all the Stargate is made from Naquadah, and it requires a MK IX gatebuster to destroy one. So I would propose that a Trinium Naquadah alloy would be far tougher then simple Naquadah, throw fullerene on top of that and you see my point.
Third. The power output of the ZPM versus the NPG. The ZPM is more advanced. But being more advanced doesn't necessarily mean produces more output. The NPGs greater power but also happen to be approximately 50m long by 30m wide. The ZPM produces almost 70 percent of the NPGs output, but can be carried in your backpack. As for a few stating that the ship should have Pettawatt power since it seems underpowered, I would point out that the entire United States produced and used 6 terrawatts of power last year. So no I don't think the CA433 is underpowered.
I own neither Stargate nor Battlestar Galactica. Any original ideas and technology, use of technology, as well as the narrative and situations that appear within this story are my own. This story cannot be used to garner any type of monetary reward or payment. Enjoy the Fic.
Laura sat quietly waiting for Delies to return, her calm exterior in direct contrast to the turmoil she felt within. It couldn't be, the Lords of Kobol, aliens? She remembered being young and attending Temple with her parents. They would always have lunch afterwards at a small café located next to the Temple of Zeus. Roslin could close her eyes and still smell the food, still remember her parents planning the rest of the week out. But even then she remembered asking her dad why they always went to temple on Monday, and not some other day. He had looked at her and told her with a smile; "Because our family's always gone on Monday, little bit." That was it, because our family has always done it. No question, no discussion, just because.
Was that why she continued to cling to her outrage, even though at one time she had been an avowed Agnostic? Was it simple bullheadedness? This was a new world, with different ways of doing things. Or perhaps this was the oldest world of all, Laura thought almost hysterically.
Laura shivered imperceptibly despite the comfortable temperature in the office. Abruptly she stood and began to pace around the office, anything to get her mind off of aliens and gods. She began to study the memorabilia that adorned the office walls, many were framed pictures. Some were of Delies meeting, what Laura assumed, were important people in the Tau'ri Republic. A few beautiful framed certificates were located in a small alcove and Laura moved toward them. They looked like they had been printed on old parchment and had exquisite wood frames around them. Laura paused in front of the first one and began to absently read it, as she read it she became more interested in what it said.
"Certificate of Commendation. Given in gratitude to Angela Delies for actions during difficult negotiations with the New Goa'uld Alliance. Your actions contributed directly to the saving of millions of lives, and the path to peace for countless others. Given by my hand on this date, the 27th of April 2023. Signed Renata Flores, President of the Tau'ri Republic."
Laura reached up to touch the Certificate, behind her the door opened and Delies reentered her office. Without turning around Laura began to speak. "You said the Goa'uld were evil, that they were killers and parasites. Why would you make peace with them? That doesn't make sense, if they were responsible for kidnapping so many people from here, why would you do that?"
"It's for precisely that reason that we made peace. We had killed so many of them, but we had to destroy legions of Jaffa to do it." Delies answered.
"Jaffa?" Laura asked as she turned around.
"A genetically altered human species, one that acted as walking incubators for the Goa'uld larvae. They revered their gods, and in exchange those parasites sent them to die for them. Honorable, intelligent, loving of their families, but they could also be fanatic zealots to their gods. Despite all that, they believed, they really believed in the righteousness of their actions. They were ignorant, but they were also used, so in that way they were innocent of many of the crimes of their gods." Delies paused for a second to gather her thoughts on this unexpected topic.
"At the end we had pushed the Goa'uld back, there were still a few dozen elder Goa'uld left, supported by hundreds of younger ones. Those remaining parasites had millions of Jaffa left and billions of human followers, ones that even to this day still refuse to accept the reality of their gods. Each Jaffa prepared to lay down not only their lives, but the lives of their families as well.
There was a planet called 'Nfr', it means beautiful in ancient Egyptian. It was a major planet for one of the few remaining System Lords. It was also a staging area for raids that were targeting primitive human worlds, as well as attacking our supply convoys. So we dealt with it. The Navy cleared the way, and we landed a full Corps worth of Troops. We thought the Jaffa and human population would rally to us, that they would rise up and help us pull down their false god." Angela paused and met Laura's eyes. "That's what we thought anyway, but they didn't think the same way we did. Civilians, woman and children armed with staff weapons fought us in the city streets, they charged our tanks. Every city, every town, all of them fought for their beliefs. By the time it was all over we had lost tens of thousands and they had hundreds of thousands die."
Angela again paused for a second before continuing. "So we had a choice. We could continue down the path we had started, kill the Goa'uld that was left. In the process kill millions, probably billions of people whose only real crime was praying to the wrong god. We said we cherished freedom, freedom of religion, we said we cherished life, all life. So we had to try, one last attempt at peace. The alternative would have been to become the very monsters we were fighting. To force worlds and people to bend to our will, and to commit genocide in what was really becoming a religious war."
Angela walked over to Laura and touched the framed certificate. "I was a junior diplomat back then, one of five who helped Ambassador Zhou. It's not a perfect peace, mind you, but it is peace. I keep this certificate to remind me there are always alternatives, always another path to take. You need the military, but you also need the diplomats. In this case the diplomatic victory was a better choice then what the military victory would have been."
Laura met the other woman's eyes and gave a slight nod. "Thank you for sharing that. I think I understand what you are saying."
Angela returned Laura's stare evenly. "I hope you do." Angela cleared her throat and in a clear voice said. "Madame President, I bring news. I think it would be best if you were to sit down for what I have to say." With that Angela led Roslin back to her seat and sat down across from her.
General O'Neill followed Captain Miyake as she led him to her private office just off of the bridge. "Sir, do you want me to wait outside?"
"No that won't be necessary Captain, I think I can find my way back. Why don't you get back to dinner and make sure that Rudenko and Cunningham don't kill each other." O'Neill said with a grin.
O'Neill turned back to the room and waited for the door too close, before activating the security lockdown. Sitting down in the comfortable seat he reached forward and activated the computer screen in front of him. "Contact the Mountain, secure communications center."
"Identification and confirmation required." The ship's computer responded.
A soprano thought O'Neill with mild surprise, he shook his head softly as he answered. "O'Neill, Johnathon. General JO6122."
There was a slight pause as the computer scanned the human sitting before it, once it was convinced that it was indeed General O'Neill it connected to the Mountain.
The screen switched from the logo of the Suffren to the face of an enlisted tech. "Secure Communications Center, the Mountain. This is Master Sergeant Sanchez speaking."
"Sergeant this is General O'Neill."
"Yes Sir. Please hold for Colonel Dinh." The MSG responded.
The screen switched to the logo of the Mountain for a few seconds and then switched to the Colonel. "Sir, I am Colonel Dinh, the watch officer for the center. At 1746 hours Mountain Time, we received a Priority Delta level message packet from the Secretary of Defense's office. It is addressed to you and marked 'no immediate action required', Sir."
"Fine Colonel, go ahead and send the message here to the Suffren."
"Yes, Sir. Standby please." A few seconds later and; "Data transfer complete Sir. Do you require anything else?" The Colonel politely asked.
"No, thank you." O'Neill said as he confirmed that the 'Secure Message Received' prompt appeared on the computer screen.
With a touch on the screen the window with the Colonel closed and O'Neill opened the Delta level message. He was whistling softly as he read. Delta level was the lowest of the secure ratings, so it would not have any potentially Earth-Shattering content. He suddenly stopped whistling as the import of Stanley Witward's conversation with the Cylons hit home.
The desperate mob onboard the Colonial Movers Five freighter surged forward as the doors to the hangar bay opened. The call had come through from a sympathetic deckhand, two Tau'ri shuttles had recently landed and the possibility of food was a siren's song. Many of the people in the group were exactly what they appeared to be, hungry, desperate, and looking to do what they could for their families. A few of them were there for a different reason, these select few were hoping to take advantage of a potential riot. The chance to snatch some supplies and later sell them on the black market could be very lucrative.
A few men, that were notable in that they, weren't quite as haggard as the others around them were the paid troublemakers. It was their job to stir up the mob, while others grabbed what they could. It was a good plan and they had used it with varying degrees of success in the past. The fact that the riots were making it harder to disseminate the food was an added benefit. The continuing food shortages served to increase the prices of the food that was available.
So it came as quite a surprise that when they surged forward they were met, not by the expected threadbare line of Colonial Marines but something else entirely. Arrayed before them was a line of thirty or so troops of some kind. A few who had access to the working televisions onboard the ship recognized them as Tau'ri Marines. All but two of them wore fully enclosed helmets, they all had their rifles slung behind their backs. Instead each Marine carried a rod about two feet long or so, with a prong on the end that had golden sparks flashing from it. Each and every single person in the mob stopped well short of the silent Tau'ri line.
One of the ring leaders that had been hanging in the back pushed forward to stand alongside one of the paid thugs. "Well, what are you waiting for? This is what we pay you for."
"Well frak that! You're not paying me enough for some Thirteener to shove some kind of fraking cattle-prod up my ass! You want the food, go ahead, I'm right behind you big guy." The thug answered with a sneer.
As they watched a Colonial Marine Sergeant walked through the Tau'ri line and gave the mob an appraising look. He had two black eyes, and his nose had a splint on it, but he had a monumental smile on his face as he addressed the crowd.
"So…does anyone think it's a good idea to bum rush the shuttle today? Anyone? No? Well how's about we try it my way today and form two lines so we can get you people the food you need and get you back to your families as fast as we can? What do you think, sound like a plan?"
The Sergeant watched as the Colonial civilians formed two lines with a minimum of pushing and shoving. Things were looking up he thought, nothing like a little visual threat to make people act human.
"I think you enjoyed that, Sergeant." Said the Tau'ri Marine Lieutenant as she walked up.
"Hells yes Ma'am, I enjoyed it." The Sergeant said as he matched the smile on the Tau'ri officer's face.
Laura sat down with a feeling of trepidation. Delies had addressed her in a very formal manner when she had asked her to sit. The impression that she received was that it would not be good news. Roslin took a deep breath and plunged in. "What is it, Ms. Delies, what has happened?"
Angela met Laura's eyes, and paused. This woman had been through hell, an emotional rollercoaster, and it was about to get worse. It seemed, to Angela, that the multiverse had decided that the Colonials in general, and Roslin specifically was the universal punching bag. Well, in the end there was really no easy way to broach the subject, so Delies just dove in.
"As you are aware, I received a message from Stanley Witward. I had tasked him to deliver Earth's answer to the Cylon's request for political asylum. In the process of delivering that message, new information has come too light." Angela paused for a second. "It seems that the Cylons have knowledge of the fact that there are other Colonial survivors."
Laura froze. A second later she felt her hands begin to shake and she ruthlessly exerted control over them. More of her people, alive? My gods, could it be? Maybe, just maybe Colonial culture would not die within a generation or two, maybe, just maybe they were about to get a second chance.
"How…" Laura's voice cracked, and she took a second to compose herself before continuing. "How many more people?"
"The Cylons believe several million of your people have survived." Delies responded.
"Several million? My gods, my gods." Laura paused she was literally at a loss for words. Her first thoughts had been one of joy, but those thoughts were rapidly giving way too much darker ones. "Why didn't they tell us this before? What gave them the right to withhold this? How can they possibly justify this latest outrage?" She spoke in a low even voice, but the menace in her words was clear.
"They believed that they were doing you a service." Angela replied evenly. Delies had decided the best thing to do at this point was to let Roslin work out her conflicting feelings.
"A service? How so, by making sure that we couldn't help them? By making sure that they could kill what was left with a minimum of fuss? Don't you see, can you not see what you are really dealing with here, they are liars! They will lie to you every chance they get; they will give you half-truths when it suits them. You can't trust them. What was their price for this information? Tell me what are a few million of my people worth?" Laura could no longer control the shaking of her hands, so she chose to grasp the armrests of her chair in a death grip instead.
"They placed no price on this information. They willingly surrendered it." Angela replied softly.
Laura was desperately trying to regain control. It was simply too much, first the revelations about the gods and now the fact that she had abandoned millions of her people to death. It didn't matter that she was ignorant of their existence, she was the President, it was her responsibility. Laura felt as if her sanity was slipping away, and part of her really wanted to let go, to simply scream her hate at the universe. She struggled to control herself, to center herself and deal with the situation.
Angela watched the internal struggle play itself out on Roslin's face. This was something that Laura had to deal with herself, so Angela kept quiet and waited.
With a visible effort Laura regained control. "What are your intentions?"
"In regards to what specifically, Madame President?" As Delies saw it Roslin would choose one of two paths. Either Roslin would ask what was to be done about her people, or she would ask what was to be done with the Cylons. If Roslin's first impulse was to worry about the welfare of her people, then Delies would be satisfied that the Colonial President was rational. If, on the other hand, she was more worried about punishing the Cylons then her hate was all consuming, and she would be useless as a leader.
"My people. What can Earth do for the millions of people still out there. The millions of people that have no future, no chance, and most of all no hope?" Roslin ground out.
Angela sighed, grateful that a defining moment had passed. "I can make no promises at this time Madame President. Any decision on this subject will be dealt with at a much higher level than me. This will almost certainly be a military as well as a political decision." Angela paused for a second to let her words sink in before continuing. "However, I can tell you that Earth has a history of rushing to the aid of people in need. We recognized a long time ago that we could not and would not allow suffering to define the universe. Whether you accept it or not Madame President, Earth is the Mother of Humanity, and Earth takes care of her children."
Roslin visibly relaxed. "Thank you. I need to talk to Admiral Adama. I need to let him know what's happened."
Angela chose her next words carefully. "Madame President, Laura, immediately after I was notified, the Mountain was notified. Your Admiral is on a Navy cruiser in a meeting with arguably the second most powerful person in the Galaxy. General O'Neill will have been notified by the Mountain, I guarantee it. He'll tell Adama what's happened, and Adama will be in a better position to act on this information than either of us. Don't get in the way of that."
"I don't understand; how could he do that?" Roslin asked.
"As I said, he's with General O'Neill. If Adama can persuade O'Neill to help than you can bet, we will. Any decision that O'Neill makes, the Secretary of Defense will back-up. And if the Secretary of Defense and General O'Neill hold that position the President will surely support it. Give Adama a chance to deal with this." Delies replied.
Roslin could see the logic behind the argument that the Tau'ri diplomat presented. "I trust Admiral Adama completely, he'll do the right thing. He always does."
Delies smiled. "Besides Madame President, we still have unfinished business here. We need to get you a planet, we need to get your people off of those ships."
Roslin gave a small forced smile before answering Delies. "Your right, we need to do that. But I have a question for you."
Angela braced for the question, she saw it coming.
"What will you do about those lying machines?"
Angela slowly shook her head, and gave a small chuckle. It was expected, but at least the Colonial President had her priorities straight. Roslin could function as a leader for her people, but she needed to control her hate. Time for some tough love, Angela decided.
"Do, Madame President? I will grant them asylum of course." She held up her hand as Roslin began to retort. "Lying machines? Do you remember when I said there was no cost for the information given by them? When I said that, I meant there was no cost to us. They, on the other hand, were prepared to pay a terrible price for that information. We could have denied them any help as a result of that little revelation. We could have packed them all up in that Baseship of theirs and thrown them out of our space, or worse. For all they know we could have simply executed them out of hand! But they still willingly surrendered that information, regardless of the potential cost. Information that no one would ever have been the wiser to." Angela paused for a second, her eyes flashing in anger. "They chose to withhold that information because they feared that Admiral Adama would turn the Galactica back to try and assist those still trapped. They were afraid that if the Galactica left, the Remnant Fleet would have been destroyed. Whether it was a good decision or not, they saw the lives of the fifty-thousand people on those ships as sacrosanct." Again Angela paused.
"You hate them, fine, I understand that will almost certainly never change. And to be honest with you, I no longer care. Your people will be well taken care of, and so will the Cylons. You can either accept that or not, it makes little difference to me! Now shall we continue the discussion regarding your future world, or shall we waste more time on useless banter that will have absolutely no effect on the inevitable outcome?"
Laura sucked her breath in. She felt her face heat up, it had been a long time since anyone had spoken to her in that manner. She fought to regain her temper, and realized that it was getting easier to do so. Laura reached up and squeezed the bridge of her nose, before meeting Angela's eyes.
"I hate them, I will never stop hating them, and I will never accept their apology." Laura paused and sighed. "But I will accept that I have no control over the situation. I will accept that in their own way they are trying to do what they think is right. I accept that the final outcome, as it currently exists, is probably the best that can be expected or hoped for."
"It is." Angela nodded as she replied.
"Very well Angela, I apologize for my outbreak. Regardless of my feelings, I understand that you are doing the best you can for my people. I thank you for that." Laura said in a calm and even voice.
"No apology required Madame President. I understand that you also are doing the very best you can under difficult conditions. Shall we continue?"
"Yes, we need to continue." Laura replied.
Admiral Adama was enjoying himself immensely. It had been almost an hour since O'Neill had left and Adama and the officers had moved on to desert. Adama was laughing in between bites of something called cheesecake, as he watched the severely outnumbered General Rudenko attempt to fend off repeated attacks against his beloved Army.
"Typical of the Navy, you wait until you have outnumbered me ten to one, and you still have failed to win the contest." Rudenko roared good naturedly.
"Ha, we don't need numbers to beat you Artyom, you Army types could outnumber us ten to one and we would still have a higher combined IQ." Cunningham shot back.
Adama grinned as he watched Rudenko growl at the Admiral. He had missed this greatly, Adama realized. The easy camaraderie of the service, the jokes and stories that no civilian could ever really understand. Family, Adama admitted, this is my family.
They were still laughing and trading jokes when General O'Neill returned. They all started to rise from their seats but O'Neill gestured for them to stay seated. All the officers noticed that there had been a change in the demeanor of the General.
"Is there something wrong, Sir?" Asked Admiral Cunningham.
"I'm afraid so, Justin. O'Neill replied. "As much as I hate being a wet blanket, and call a halt to this incredible dinner, we need to talk. Captain, thank you so much for this incredible evening, your ship's hospitality has been memorable. I need to meet in private with the flag officers, do you have a place we could borrow?"
"Of course, Sir. The VIP day cabin is available Sir, or would you prefer a more formal format?" Miyake answered nonplussed.
"The cabin's fine." O'Neill said.
A CA433 was not a Command Cruiser so it didn't come equipped with an Admiral's stateroom, but she did carry two VIP cabins on the off chance she ever carried any. It was to one of these that Captain Miyake escorted her eminent guests. The flag officers filed into the luxurious day cabin along with General O'Neill's aide. Commodore Castula realized that she had not been included in General O'Neill's "flag officer" request so she accompanied Miyake back to the bridge to await whatever outcome was forthcoming.
General O'Neill took a seat in a comfortable recliner while the other senior officers sat in sofas around him.
"Gary." O'Neill said.
Captain Russel opened the small pack he was carrying and removed a bottle of Talisker Single Malt Scotch. He then carefully removed four shot glasses that were etched with the insignia of the office of General O'Neill as well as the date.
Jack waited till Russel had passed each of the senior officers a filled glass before starting to talk.
"Before I say anything else, I just want to welcome you Admiral Adama to our fraternity. I want you to know you're not alone and that you will always have us to watch your back." With that O'Neill downed the shot in his glass.
Adama downed the shot along with everyone else and felt the smooth whiskey trace a path down his throat. "Mmm, that's good." He said appreciatively.
O'Neill smiled softly.
"I received a secure message from the Secretary of Defense." O'Neill began. "It had to deal with a report that was forwarded by a Mr. Stanley Witward, regarding a conversation he had with the Cylons."
Adama leaned forward as he realized that this secure message obviously had something to do with him.
"Apparently, they have stated that there are additional Colonial survivors left back in your home system Admiral." O'Neill said as he met Adama's eyes.
Adama slowly leaned back in the comfortable sofa. He reached up and with both hands rubbed his eyes.
"Did they say how many more?" Adama asked.
"Several million." O'Neill replied.
Adama abruptly dropped his hands from his face and fixed General O'Neill with an intense stare. "Excuse me?"
"Apparently, other Battlestars survived and they along with some other warships have been conducting hit and run raids against the Cylons. They hit when they want and break contact before becoming bogged down in a major fight. They've made life hell for the Cylons." O'Neill said.
"Oh my gods. I left them behind, I failed in my duties." Adama said.
"That's not fair Admiral!" Cunningham snapped. "You had no way of knowing. You did what you thought best, given the information you had available at the time. Failed in your duties? I'm damn sure if I take a jaunt over to those civilian ships of yours the vast majority would tell me the exact opposite."
Rudenko leaned forward as Cunningham stopped to collect his thoughts. "My Brother in the Navy is right Bill. I have seen many acts of courage and valor in my time, and yours is a story to inspire those that will come after you. You have no reason to tear yourself apart, the exact opposite my friend. You have given those millions hope."
Adama turned to stare at Rudenko with haunted eyes. "Given them hope? I may as well have passed a death sentence on them, they have no hope."
"Wrong Admiral." O'Neill took charge of the conversation. "Artyom is right. Whether they know it or not, you have given them hope. Hope that something will be done, hope that they not only can but will survive. I mean no disrespect to you or your service Bill, but what you did was go tell the rest of the family what happened. And this family rolls deep Admiral."
Adama felt a spark of hope at the General's words.
"Will you repair the Galactica? Will you allow me to go back and try and save what I can?" Adama asked.
O'Neill met Adama's eyes and stared into them, gauging the strength of the man before him. "Yes, we'll fix the Galactica. And no, I will not allow you to go back." O'Neill held up one finger to forestall any interruption by the Colonial Admiral.
"When you go back Admiral, you won't go alone, and you won't go on the Galactica." O'Neill said quietly.
"Justin?" O'Neill said as he turned toward the Tau'ri Admiral.
Cunningham nodded and began to talk. "We're going to need to put some dedicated Task Groups together. Probably going to need to have a major Army component. We're looking at twelve planets, so we need to be able to secure their local space as well as land troops. Probably need a tender or two, plus at least one hospital ship. So that means escorts for the support ships as well. It's going to be a major undertaking, and not one we could put together on the fly. But it is very doable, Sir."
"Why not use Fourth Fleet? It is what that fleet exists for, isn't it?" Rudenko asked.
"We don't need Fourth Fleet, Home Fleet can do it, these planets are in the Milky Way." Cunningham snapped with surprising vehemence.
Rudenko raised his hands chest high. "Peace my Brother I did not mean to disparage you or your fleet."
Cunningham smiled sheepishly at his overreaction. "Sorry."
O'Neill inwardly winced. Inter-service rivalry was one thing intra-service was another thing completely. The Republic maintained one major fleet per Galaxy, Home Fleet, 3rd Fleet, and 5th Fleet, each one of those were tasked to provide defense as well as order within their respective Galaxies. 4th Fleet was something different, it's area of operation encompassed all Republic territory. If the other three fleets were the shield of the Republic, then 4th Fleet was definitely it's sword. And while any fleet command was considered the crowning jewel of any career, well some jewels were more valuable than others. 4th received the newest ships, and many of the personnel saw it as the ultimate prestige assignment, even more so then the vaunted Home Fleet.
"No one is saying that Home Fleet can't handle this assignment Justin. I have every confidence that your Fleet will explain to the Cylons why they don't want to be the playground bully anymore."
Cunningham nodded accepting the mild rebuke.
"Like I said Bill, your one of us, and we roll deep." O'Neill said.
"Sir, we're going to need one more major thing." Cunningham said and then turned his attention to Adama.
"Admiral we're going to need your navigational data, we need to know where we are going."
Adama was surprised at just how quickly events had happened, what could have been potentially terrible news now actually had a sense of hope. "Call me Bill."
"As long as you call me Justin."
Adama smiled. "Done Justin. I'll have my logs and charts transferred to you as soon as possible."
"It's going to take some time Bill to get this put together, but as soon as we can will go say hello to the rest of your people. From what I've read Bill, it sounds like your ships are giving the Cylons hell over there." O'Neill finished.
Adama gave a predatory smile.
Three hours later Leoben and D'Anna were still sitting quietly together in front of the great window looking out over the sprawling Emerson Lunar base. Hanging over the base was the serene blue ball that was Earth. When the doors finally opened again Leoben turned around, half expecting it to be guards come to take them into custody. He was mildly surprised when just Witward came back in.
"Mr. Witward." Said Leoben by way of greeting.
"Mr. Conoy, Ms. Biers. Shall we have a seat and continue our discussion from earlier?" Witward said.
"That would be very welcome." Leoben smiled and was relieved when Witward returned a matching one.
"First let me start by saying, after further reflection, that you showed great personal courage in providing the information you did. I have passed that information on up the chain and I expect that it has almost certainly made it to the people that have the power to act on it. Ambassador Delies, my superior, asked me to pass on her compliments for your honesty." Stanley paused to let that little bit of information sink in before continuing.
"Is there any other pertinent information that you may be privy to before we continue?" Witward asked.
"No, nothing else." D'Anna answered.
Stanley gave a reassuring smile before continuing. "I have been instructed and empowered to provide you with the following agreement, provided you are willing to meet the conditions that the Tau'ri Republic has set out for you."
Both Leoben and D'Anna indicated their willingness to listen to the proposal, so Witward continued.
"One. The Cylons will surrender their ship and all weapons to the Tau'ri Republic. Two. The Cylons will renounce any and all claims to any territory within the Cyrannus Sector or the so-called redline. Three. The Cylons will immediately declare an unconditional peace to exist between the Twelve Colonies of Kobol and the Cylon Combine. Four. The Cylons will admit to the crime of attempted genocide." Witward said in a clear voice.
"Admit to our crime?" D'Anna asked aghast.
Leoben reached over and placed his hand over hers and gently squeezed.
"Your avowed aim was the complete destruction of the life-form known as man, was it not? By definition that is genocide." Witward retorted.
"Please continue Mr. Witward." Leoben replied quietly.
"In exchange for these concessions the Tau'ri Republic is prepared to grant you Political Asylum within the borders of the Republic. Because of your role in the safeguarding of the Remnant Fleet, you will not be charged with or prosecuted for the past crimes. The President has agreed to grant clemency. The Cylon Combine will receive fair monetary compensation for the surrendered ship as well as any tech onboard the ship. The planet De'vron in the Ida Galaxy has agreed to accept you as refugees, with the understanding that if your people become accepted members of that population you will be eligible for full citizenship within ten standard years. You will be protected and you will be separated from the Colonials. We believe that in a few generations your peoples will be better able to interact with each other. Till such time as that, we will endeavor to keep the Colonials and you separated." Witward paused again.
"It's a good deal, and your people will have the chance to prosper under these conditions." Witward finished.
"I assume that Earth will send forces to the Cyrannus Sector?" Leoben asked.
"I am not privy to the intentions of my government in regards to the Cyrannus Sector. However, I believe that your assumption is probably a safe one." Witward replied.
"What will happen to my people there?" Leoben asked.
"Again it is not my place to make policy or even really comment on it. Having said that, I would think that their fate would depend on their actions. The Tau'ri military does not fire on surrendered individuals or groups. The military has always attempted to minimize collateral damage. But the Tau'ri military has never shied away from doing what is required to secure victory either." Witward said.
"If we were to agree to this how soon would we be transported do De'vron?" Leoben asked.
"There are a few thousand of you in total. You of course understand, that you would have to undergo medical checks as well as being processed into the Republic. You would also receive papers and identification, as well as having a debrief completed. This process will probably take anywhere from two to three weeks. After we have completed your processing we could have all of you on De'vron within a day or so." Witward replied.
"A day? I thought you said De'vron was in a different galaxy." Leoben asked surprised.
"It is." Witward answered.
"Just how fast are your ships?" D'Anna asked incredulously.
"Fast, very fast. But who said anything about using a ship to transport you?" Witward replied with a smile.
Leoben turned to D'Anna, and she nodded imperceptibly to his unvoiced question. Leoben turned back to Witward.
"Mr. Witward before we make any decision we need to communicate with the rest of our people."
"I understand Mr. Conoy. I can arrange for a shuttle to transport you to either the Galactica or the Baseship." Witward offered.
"Thank you. If possible we would like to talk to both groups of our people." Leoben said.
"That is easily done. Come let us arrange transport as well as an escort for you."
With those words Witward stood and led the Cylons from the conference room.
Saul and Shar had just left the conference room of the Galactica after a long and boring meeting. Both were looking forward to a drink in the below decks bar, when Tigh was paged. Grumbling Tigh walked over to the nearest phone.
"CIC this is the XO." Tigh stifled a yawn as he talked into the sound powered phone.
"Sir, we've just received a transmission from Galactica actual. He will be departing the Suffren and asks that you assemble the staff in the conference room to brief him on the recommended course of action in regards to the refit." The communications Chief reported.
"Fine, I'll get a quick bite and meet him in the landing bay." Tigh answered.
"Sir, he said he would be in the conference room momentarily and expected to see you there." Came the reply.
"That doesn't make any sense, what do you mean momentarily?" Tigh's voice rose at the absurdity of the message.
"Sir, I'm sorry but that is the message." The communications Chief cringed on the other side of the line. Tigh's temper was well known on the ship, and he braced for the expected explosion.
"Well, page the staff and have them meet me in the conference room. Is Captain Varsas still onboard?" Tigh demanded.
"Yes Sir, he's already in the conference room." The Chief answered.
With a muted curse Tigh slammed the receiver back into its cradle terminating the conversation.
He turned to find Shar hovering near him, obviously listening in. What threw Tigh off was the fact that Shar had a huge grin on his face.
"What' so funny?" Tigh asked cautiously.
"Nothing, just enjoying the ambience. Why do you ask?" Shar replied.
Now Saul became downright paranoid. Shar was up to something and he was the likely target. "Fine, I don't have time for any games anyway, let's go and see what the hells is going on."
"Hell, there's one hell." Shar said with a smile.
"Maybe where you're from, but where I come from there's more than one." Saul replied.
"Why, is one hell not big enough for that ego of yours?" Shar asked innocently.
"Oh, you're in rare form today." Tigh snapped.
The two made their way back to the conference room and were met by the sight of Captain Varsas in deep conversation with the staff. Saul took a step towards the group with the intention of asking the Tau'ri Captain if he knew what was going on. He never made it.
With a flash of light Admiral Adama appeared less than ten feet away from him.
Tigh jumped back. "What the frak was that!" He bellowed.
Shar was laughing hysterically next to him. "You should have seen the look on your face, if you had any hair left it'd be standing on end!"
"You bastard, you could have warned me. I almost had a heart attack!" Tigh growled.
Shar stopped laughing and replied in a deadpan voice; "Why would I do that, I was hoping you'd make my day and have one."
Tigh restrained himself from popping Shar right in the mouth.
Captain Varsas cleared his throat pointedly. "Gentlemen." He wasn't quite sure if he should use that term when it came to Tigh and Shar, but in any case, this wasn't the place for their games.
"Admiral welcome back Sir." Varsas intoned.
"Thank you Captain. Are you prepared to brief me on the plan for the refit?" Adama asked.
"Yes Sir, I am." Varsas replied.
"Well there has been a development, so I want to expedite her repairs." Adama paused and scanned the faces around him. "Mr. Theran I want you to pull a copy of our navigation charts, plus our nav logs and send them to the Home Fleet HQ in orbit around Earth. Their expecting them." Adama watched as the young Lieutenant moved off to carry out his orders. He took a seat at the head of the table and waited for everyone to sit down.
"Alright Captain you have my undivided attention."