Important note: I've been having serious issues with my computer so I'm taking this opportunity to upload everything I can to , completed or not so that everyone can at least have something to read.

"Si via pacem, para bellum.

If you seek peace, prepare for war."

-Latin Adage

0 has entered the room.

All members are now present.

0: Good evening. With the return of Admiral Hackett to human space, we may now officially declare that peace has been reached with this "Citadel Council". The question now is how shall we prepare ourselves for the future, as such I now open the floor for discussion.

31: Before we go too far, I wish to raise issue with the message Admiral Hackett left with the aliens after your meeting with them, 0. While the contents may be true, it's possible the Batarians and other slaver groups in the "Attican Traverse" may see it as deliberate provocation.

0: Correct it was not a message that we of this council intended to give, however the warning Hackett delivered was given to him verbatim by the Commander to deliver to them.

17: The Commander said that? I suppose I shouldn't be that surprised, but the direct nature of the warning is unusual.

41: True, but I feel the Commander was right to issue such a message. All of humanity is at risk yet again and there is no reason to leave them thinking we will tolerate their criminals the way their Council does.

0: If the Commander's message is truly such an issue, then we may vote as to whether punitive measures should be taken.

77: I don't believe that's necessary. In every case the Commander has acted in Humanity's best interests, while this message may not have been sanctioned by us, it is no less true for having come from someone else.

0: Then does anyone on this council believe such measures should be taken against the Commander?


0: Very well, let us move onto the next issue.

29: The next immediate issue I think we should discuss is how we will deal with the inevitable cultural in flow we will receive from Citadel space. Already, we have received messages from several merchant groups requesting that we open trade channels with the Citadel.

50: Do we really care about that? We're self-sufficient and have a significant technological lead on them.

16: Perhaps we don't from a military standing, however trade and potentially even tourism would go a long way to easing tensions between them and us.

22: True but regardless of how it would ease tensions the greater issue involved would be espionage. The translated codex we have contains mentions of several covert groups but precious little information about them. Most concerning are the Salarian STG and the Council Spectres.

37: Agreed. Our first concern should be to establish a solid border. Whether we participate in trade, tourism, or whatever, we need to establish a way to keep them out should we require it, and to regulate trade should we participate in it.

0: On this issue, the Commander has submitted a request for the construction of at the very least a border fortress in the Shanxi system.

11: We already have such a design prepared. In the years following the Contact War, several designs were made for a combined military and commercial station. They'll need to revise them to be concurrent with new technology and such, but using them will cut down significantly on the time required to begin construction.

31: I support this proposal.

0: Very well, then we shall put this to a vote.

0 has called for a vote: "Should Humanity construct a border facility in the Shanxi system?"

Total votes: 167

Votes for: 167

Votes Against: 0

0: Very well, we shall begin immediate preparation for and the construction of a joint military and commercial facility in the Shanxi system. Are there any other topics which should be discussed?

Sur'Kesh, undisclosed location:

Across the galaxy, a very similar meeting to the Human Council's was taking place. Of course neither meeting knew about the other, but the similarities were jarring had one been able to watch them both. Only in this case all the participants were there in person...

"We have all been briefed on the current situation, correct?" a salarian in civilian clothes asked calmly from his seat around a small square table.

"Yes, and it seems that things are both better and worse than we had feared," a salarian to Civilian's left replied, dressed in the uniform of an STG commander.

"Indeed, the only thing truly going for us at the moment is that the Humans do not feel the need to press their advantage and continue their war against us," a salarian opposite Spy said, dressed in the clothes of Salarian military commander.

"Truly, however now we must turn our focus towards preparing for any conflict that may arise in the future, as I doubt our ability to maintain any form of resistance at this point," Civilian's opposite replied, dressed in a scientist's lab coat.

"Then begin, if you would," Military said calmly, looking across the table to Spy.

"Every attempt we've made to go beyond the 314 Relay has been turned back since the armistice. All attempts made during the war were terminated as soon as they passed into Human controlled space," Spy replied, "The biggest concern is that we have no idea as to what method was used to halt those incursions. No contact was received once they had passed 314, however our most recent attempts to pass have at least detected that there was no detectable debris on the Human side of the relay. This would mean that they not only captured our STG teams, but that they likely did so intact and that they have full access to the crew."

"Indeed, however other than ordering our ships to turn back when they have come through the relay since the peace was formed, they have made no efforts to obscure what we could see once we had crossed," Military replied grimly, "And what we've found is disturbing."

At once, a hologram sprang into existence atop the table, depicting a massive series of manufactured blocks that were being maneuvered together by several dozen Human vessels, all obviously civilian in make owing to their different design and lack of weapons. Where the blocks was going was what was concerning to them the most though. A structure already nearly seven kilometers in length was taking shape, with guidance wires and scaffolds giving it the general shape of a dumbbell.

"While it's clear this facility will serve a defensive function going by the weapon blocks that we've spotted being brought into place, we have yet to determine the overall purpose of the facility even with our most recent incursions. The overall shape is a great deviation from every piece of Human vessel we've seen, and as such we can only speculate on its purpose at this moment," Scientist remarked calmly.

"Then what measures should we take? All of our efforts in stealth technology are ineffective against whatever it is the Humans use for sensors and until they decide to tell us, we just don't know what it is they're doing. The fact that they could assemble something so massive so quickly is immensely worrying as well. The speed means that they were already geared towards building structures like this, or that their industrial base is so large that they can turn all of their efforts towards this in order to build this station as quickly as possible," Civilian offered.

"Neither of those options are encouraging," Military said with a small sigh, "The issue is that we simply know far too little about them, and until Humanity decides to be more forthcoming, there is little we can do about it."



"So it seems."

There was quiet for a moment after the consensus was reached before Civilian spoke again, "Then I propose a ramp up in funding for the STG, we need to find a way around the Human sensors, even if we don't know what they are. I also propose that we initiate diplomatic and economic overtures to the humans, separate from the Citadel if we must."

"Are you certain?" Spy asked.

"I would say that we have little choice but to go behind the Citadel's backs if we must," Scientist replied, "Without even knowing anything about their ground capabilities, all of our predictions show that even with the Krogan at full strength we could not turn back the Human war machine. All the evidence we need is that they lost not a single combat vessel larger than a fighter or a bomber during their advance to Palaven."

The room fell into silence at that declaration.

The Rachni had been the biggest threat ever faced by the Citadel, and it had taken the combined arms of every race and uplifting of Krogan to bring their war to a halt. A threat that even that much force couldn't stop was worrying.

"Then we shall proceed with your suggestions." Spy said somberly.