THE FARTHEST ONES FROM HOME
A BATTLESTAR GALACTICA/SPACE: ABOVE AND BEYOND CROSSOVER STORY
BY ROBERT PERKINS
ABOARD COLONIAL ONE,
DAY 389 OF THE EXODUS (3 JANUARY 2064)
President Laura Roslin watched as the members of the Quorum of Twelve filed into the cramped conference room aboard the star liner, COLONIAL ONE, which now served as the meeting place of the Colonial Fleet’s legislative body. The destruction of the former meeting place of the Quorum of Twelve, the liner CLOUD NINE, had forced the Quorum to take up residence on COLONIAL ONE. This had not pleased Roslin, who was not on the best of terms with several members of the Quorum. When the Quorum had been safely ensconced aboard CLOUD NINE, Roslin had been able to govern without too much interference from the legislative body. Now they were right here, underfoot, aboard the vessel from which Roslin governed the last surviving remnant of the Twelve Colonies of Kobol. It was proving quite frustrating.
As she watched Dr. Gaius Baltar, the Quorum representative from the planet of Caprica, enter the room, her thoughts drifted to the destruction of the CLOUD NINE. The investigation into the destruction of the CLOUD NINE was still ongoing, and no satisfactory answer had been discovered. It appeared to have been destroyed by the detonation of a nuclear device which had been given to Dr. Baltar to provide plutonium which would be used in the failed Cylon Detector which Baltar had attempted to build. Baltar claimed the nuclear device had been stolen from his laboratory…possibly by the terrorist group which called itself “Demand Peace,” which had been responsible for a number of other incidents of terrorism and sabotage aboard the fleet. Roslin had her doubts. She strongly suspected that Baltar was somehow in collusion with the Cylons, but had been unable to prove it. And since she couldn’t prove it, Baltar was still allowed to keep his freedom and to serve as a member of the Quorum of Twelve. Indeed, he had, several months ago, run against Roslin in the Presidential Elections which had been held by the surviving Colonials.
The idea that terrorism might have been involved in the destruction of the CLOUD NINE suddenly became a bit more credible to Roslin as she watched another member of the Quorum enter the room and take his place at the table. Tom Zarek, the representative of the planet Sagittaron, was a political extremist and a former terrorist himself. He had blown up a government building on Sagittaron, and had served most of a twenty-year prison sentence for that act. Indeed, if the Cylons had not attacked the Twelve Colonies, Zarek might well have been still behind bars. As it turned out, on the eve of the Cylon attack, Zarek was among a group of prisoners placed aboard the liner, ASTRAL QUEEN, for transport to Caprica for parole hearings. The liner had been one of the relatively few such vessels to have FTL drive, and as a result, she was commandeered and used to evacuate survivors of the Cylon attack which destroyed Caprica. President Roslin had refused the suggestion of the ASTRAL QUEEN’S Captain that the prisoners be euthanized, and eventually, after Zarek had led them in a riot against their continued imprisonment, the prisoners had been released. Zarek had continued his political agitation and had been a thorn in Roslin’s side ever since.
Seated with Roslin was Admiral William Adama, and a small delegation of humans from Earth composed of Commodore Glen Ross of the U.S.S. SARATOGA, as well as Howard Sewell, Deputy Director of Aerotech Industries. Ross glanced over at Sewell as they watched the Quorum members come in. He had never trusted Sewell, an arrogant, mousy-looking little man who, it seemed to him, often put Aerotech’s interests above those of Earth. Having Sewell assigned to this mission had grated on him, but there was nothing he could do. U.N. Secretary General Diane Hayden, herself a former Director of Aerotech, had ordered it. As a military officer, his duty was to obey those orders. And he could halfway understand the assignment. The humans from the Twelve Colonies of Kobol had offered their technology to assist the people of Earth in the war with the Chigs. Sewell was here to determine if that technology was worth the risk of accepting the Colonial refugees and their war with the Cylons.
But, before Sewell could inspect that technology, an agreement had to be made between Earth and the Colonials regarding blood-screening to locate any Cylon infiltrators who might still be at large within the fleet. The government of Earth had insisted on such screenings as a pre-condition of any agreement to allow the Colonials to settle on Earth. The idea of undiscovered Cylons running loose on Earth was simply not acceptable. And thus the meeting today.
The last of the Quorum delegates…Sarah Porter of Gemenon…came in and took her seat, and President Roslin called the meeting to order.
“Members of the Quorum of Twelve,” Roslin said, “Thank you for meeting with me today under such short notice. Allow me to introduce the representatives of Earth, Commodore Glen Ross, and Mr. Howard Sewell.”
“Given the extraordinary circumstances,” Sarah Porter said, “no thanks are necessary. I’m sure I speak for all of us when I say we wouldn’t have missed this for the world.”
Roslin smiled. Porter had sometimes been a formidable adversary to her administration, but she generally was a reasonable person. The same was not true of everyone here.
“Well, then,” Roslin began. “Let’s get down to business, shall we? As you all know, our last jump has brought us to a location within a very short distance of our objective, the planet Earth.” Roslin waited while the members of the Quorum applauded, then continued. “The good news is that the people of Earth are strong, and are willing to discuss our settlement among them. However, they have set a pre-condition, namely, that every member of this fleet undergo a blood screening in order to find any undiscovered Cylon infiltrators who may be living among us.”
Tom Zarek, the representative of Sagittaron, interrupted. “President Roslin, as you know, the people of Sagittaron are very traditional and many of them reject modern medicine. They will resist any attempt to force such screenings upon them. As their representative, I cannot vote in favor of this proposal.” Several other delegates proceeded to get into a loud verbal altercation with Zarek, with one of them (Safiyah Sanne of Picon) going so far as to call the Sagittarons “stubborn root-sucking jackasses,” leading Zarek to spit at Sanne from across the table.
“Shut the frack up and sit your asses down!,” Admiral Adama finally shouted, moving to pull the delegates apart. He grabbed Sanne by the shoulder and physically pushed him back into his seat.
“Yes,” Roslin shouted. “Stop this foolishness now!” Reluctantly, the delegates resumed their seats. With a frown, Roslin looked at Zarek. She had known that Zarek would find a way to disrupt these proceedings. But she had to admit, he raised a valid point.
“Mr. Zarek,” she said, “I recognize and respect the traditions of the people of Sagittaron.”
“Respect, Madame President?,” Zarek said, shaking his head. “The history of my planet is not one of respect by the government of the Twelve Colonies, nor by the people of the other planets. I beg leave to doubt that you respect our traditions.”
Roslin could feel anger rising within her, but she fought to control it, knowing that giving into it would be playing into Zarek’s hands. She took a deep breath, and then smiled.
“We are aware of the unfortunate history of Sagittaron, and the exploitation of it’s people by the other colonies,” she said. “On behalf of the other colonies, I here and now apologize for this. It is time that we put ancient…and, I will admit, some modern…history aside. We, here on this fleet, are all that is left of the Twelve Colonies. We cannot continue to allow old hatreds to divide us. The Twelve Colonies are gone. The worlds where those hatreds grew are gone. The past is dead. Let it bury it’s dead, and let us move on.”
The response to Roslin’s statement was a thunder of applause from the assembled delegates. Even Tom Zarek, irked though he was that he had failed to provoke Roslin, clapped with the rest of the delegates.
“Mr. Zarek,” Roslin continued. “The blood screenings are not optional. If we are going to be accepted by the people of Earth, they must be sure that we are human, as they are. Are you, or people you represent, willing to jeopardize the survival of everyone in this fleet by refusing to undergo the screenings?”
Zarek frowned, but did not immediately answer. Instead, Gaius Baltar spoke up.
“How do we know this blood screening is even an accurate test to determine if someone is a Cylon or not?,” he demanded. “My own studies indicate that detecting a humanoid Cylon is impossible. My own Cylon Detector, as we all know, failed.”
“The medical technology of the people of Earth may be superior to our own,” President Roslin said. “And our equipment to conduct reliable medical screenings aboard this fleet is quite limited. We had to flee into space quickly, and much that we had developed was left behind. Your Cylon Detector, as I recall, was not a medical screen, but a screening to detect synthetic elements at the molecular level. And I have seen convincing evidence that their test is a valid one.”
“And what evidence is that?,” Baltar continued to press. “How do we know these tests won’t lead to false labeling of humans as Cylons?”
“We sent samples of blood taken, before their execution, from the various Cylons we have captured,” Roslin replied. “Every Cylon sample contains the same unique genetic mutations which are never found in any confirmed human sample. The test appears to work with 100% accuracy.”
Baltar was about speak again when he was interrupted by Howard Sewell. “Dr. Baltar,” Sewell said, “we are very interested in examining your Cylon Detector. The principle of it seems sound, and quite frankly, we are mystified that it didn’t work.”
When Baltar heard that, he was terrified. For of course, his Cylon Detector DID work, but he had chosen to cover this fact up with a fabric of lies. And he had, albeit unintentionally, colluded with the Cylons…or at least, with one particular Cylon, who still haunted him even after being killed during the Cylon attack on Caprica. In his mind, the beautiful blonde Cylon known as Number Six was taunting him. “Oh what a tangled web we weave, when first we practice to deceive,” she said, laughing. “Your secret is about to be revealed.” Baltar shook his head and suddenly stood up. “Be quiet!,” he muttered out loud…much louder than he’d intended.
President Roslin looked at him strangely. “What do you mean, be quiet, Dr. Baltar? To whom are you speaking?”
Baltar snapped out of the mental struggle with the Cylon whose, what…Ghost? Memory? Secret mind-control program?…inhabited his mind, and said. “I’m sorry, but you can’t do that, Mr. Sewell.”
“May I ask why, Dr. Baltar?,” Sewell asked. “After all, President Roslin has agreed that all Colonial technologies are to be shared with the government of Earth.”
Baltar’s terror rose to a new peak. “Because,” he said quickly, “I dismantled it.” This was a lie, of course, and he knew it. In his head, Number Six was laughing louder than ever. "You’re so pathetic," she sneered. “It’s amazing I ever thought you could be God’s instrument.” Baltar ignored her as best he could, and pressed on. “It was a useless piece of equipment, and I felt that the components could be put to other, more productive use. Since then the components have been scattered as requests came in from other departments and ships. I have no idea how to reassemble them again.” If I can just get time to go to my lab, he thought desperately to himself, I can make at least part of this lie come true.
Sewell looked disappointed. Roslin frowned, clearly suspicious. But neither of them challenged Baltar. Inside his head, Number Six stopped laughing. "Well, it appears you’ve fooled them again," she said. "Maybe you aren’t so useless and pathetic after all." Baltar smiled and sat back down. He looked at President Roslin. “Madam President, to return to the subject at hand,” he said. “Until I see the proof that this test really works, I cannot vote in favor of forcing anyone to undergo these screenings, either.” Several other delegates nodded their head in agreement. Baltar glanced at Tom Zarek, who was smiling at him.
Roslin sighed. “Well, we appear to have a problem. Either we screen everyone, or the people of Earth will not allow us to settle among them.” She looked thoughtful for a moment, then spoke again. “All right, then. We won’t force the people to undergo these screenings.” Commodore Ross looked at her with amazement. Roslin looked back, and smiled. Then she looked at the delegates, one by one. Her face assumed a hardness that had only been seen when she watched captured Cylons being ejected into space through an open airlock door. “But know this…and make it clear to your people. No person who refuses to undergo screening will be allowed to settle on Earth.”
“What is to become of them, then,” Sarah Porter asked.
“They will be interned aboard one of your ships, whose engine will be disabled to prevent it’s escape into space, and placed in orbit around our moon,” Commodore Ross said, “until such time as they agree to undergo screening, or until after the completion of our war with the Chigs, whichever comes first. Once the Chigs are defeated, they will be settled on a habitable world in another star system…with no means of leaving said world. There they can build whatever society they wish.”
“You see, delegates, there really is no choice here,” President Roslin said. “Either we accept these terms or we continue our flight into deep space and forget about settling on Earth. So what will it be? Who votes in favor of accepting the terms?”
The silence in the room was almost tangible. Then one by one, the delegates raised their hands. Only Baltar and Tom Zarek refused.
“Well then,” President Roslin said, “it appears we have a clear majority. Commodore Ross, the government of the Twelve Colonies of Kobol accepts the terms laid out by the government of Earth.”
Commodore Ross stood, and offered his hand, which Roslin took. “Then we will immediately send over medical teams to begin collecting samples.”
“They will be made welcome, Commodore,” Roslin said. Ross smiled and sat back down.
Admiral Adama had his doubts. He knew that Tom Zarek had connections with some very unsavory elements within the fleet who could cause a LOT of trouble. I hope they will be made welcome, he thought to himself. Because if they are not, only the gods know what will come of it.
ABOARD U.S.S. SARATOGA,
6 JANUARY 2064 (DAY 392 OF THE EXODUS)
In the brig of the U.S.S. SARATOGA, Tory Foster sat, naked and cowering, in one corner of the room. The bare metal of the deck and walls was cold on her exposed skin, and she shivered. But even if the metal had been warm, she would still have shivered. She was frightened out of her mind, and with good reason.
When she had arrived on this vessel four days ago now, she had been the personal aide to the President of the Twelve Colonies of Kobol…just about as prestigious a position as it was possible to hold outside the military these days. President Roslin had trusted her as she had few others. And Tory knew that she deserved that trust. She had never given President Roslin anything other than her best. She was completely loyal to Roslin. Even now, she refused to believe that this was all anything but a big misunderstanding. Surely the humans of Earth were wrong about her.
“I’m not a Cylon!,” she muttered to herself. “I can’t be! I remember my parents. I remember growing up on Caprica! I can’t be a Cylon!” She burst into tears. “I can’t be!”
She thought back to the time of her arrest. President Roslin had been extremely angry, and had wanted to have her put out of an airlock immediately, as had become the custom among the human refugees aboard the Colonial Fleet when Cylon infiltrators were found. Commodore Ross, commander of the SARATOGA, had been in agreement. But one of the two military intelligence officers present at the meeting…a General Randford…had intervened, arguing that it would be better to hold her for interrogation instead. Commander Lee Adama had also argued against executing her immediately, reminding them that the Cylons possessed the ability to download their consciousness, at the moment of death, into a new body aboard a Resurrection Ship which might be nearby. Admiral Adama supported his son’s position. Although the Colonials had lost contact with the Cylons some time ago, there was no way to rule out the possibility that they were still following the fleet and might be closer than anyone suspected. If Tory died and was able to be successfully resurrected, she might inform the Cylons of the exact location of Earth. And that could be a disaster.
And so, it had been decided to keep her alive, at least for the present. She had been brought to the brig, her clothing unceremoniously stripped off and her body cavities searched…and not gently…by some very tough-looking female Marine guards, and confined here in this nine foot by six foot cell of bare metal, which had been her home ever since.
Her crying spell…not the first, by any means, since she’d had since being confined here…was brief. When it ended, she wiped her tears away. Through her red, puffy eyes, she looked around the room. It was starkly empty. In order to remove any possibility that she might commit suicide, the bed and all other furnishings…with the exception of the toilet…had been removed from the room. The toilet itself contained no water, removing wastes by a vacuum suction system to be recycled elsewhere in the ship. So there was no possibility that she could drown herself in it. She smiled wanly. She supposed she could attempt to crush her own skull by ramming her head into the metal walls of the cell, but honestly, she was afraid it would hurt too much. No, she thought miserably to herself. If they want me dead, they’ll have to do it themselves.
She had been taken from this room several times since her confinement here, and marched down the hall to another small room, where she had been interrogated. The memories of that filled her with dread. The Earthlings had not been gentle. She had been strapped down onto a table and beaten with rubber hoses over the entire surface of her back, buttocks, thighs, calves, and last but not least, the soles of her feet. She had been subjected to electric shocks from a device called a “Taser,” and from a very unpleasant device called a “cattle prod” which had been inserted into places she dared not think about. She shivered again as she cleared that thought quickly from her mind. Last but not least, her head had been repeatedly held under water until she thought she was going to die. She had thought, during one of the more severe interrogations, about just telling them what they wanted to hear and pretending to be a Cylon, just to get the pain to stop. But they hadn’t broken her. She kept telling them the truth as she understood it…that she was a human, not a Cylon, and that there must be some mistake…over and over. This, of course, had only angered her interrogators and encouraged them to inflict yet more torment upon her.
And then, last night, General Randford had come in during one of the interrogations and put a halt to it. He had ordered her returned to her cell, and no more interrogators had come to disturb her since. Food had been brought for her…the first since her arrest…and a medical technician had come in to see her wounds and bruises. He had given her an injection of something he called morphine which had dulled the pain of her injuries considerably.
She hoped that her ordeal was nearly at an end…that they had either discovered their mistake and were about to release her, or they were going to kill her and get it over with. But such was not to be the case. As she was considering that possibility, the door of her cell opened, and she saw, once again, the interrogators who had made her life a living hell for the past several days.
“No, please,” she whimpered as she saw them enter the room. They roughly grabbed her and dragged her, begging and pleading, back to the interrogation room. When she got inside, she saw that a medical officer, clad in a white coat, was waiting, and appeared to be readying another injection. The interrogators strapped her back down on the table…face up, this time. She winced as the medical officer stuck the needle into her arm and found a vein. She watched, fearfully, as he pressed the plunger and injected…whatever it was…into her bloodstream.
To her surprise, Tory found that whatever the medical officer injected her with made her feel…good. Very good, in fact. Kind of like she felt when she was partying and drinking. A lot. She mumbled and sang happily, swaying her head from side to side.
Dr. Kanellos looked at Colonel Klingman, an attractive female Marine officer who had been assigned as the chief interrogator of the captured Cylon, and nodded. “She appears to be reacting to the drug as any normal human would.”
Colonel Klingman nodded in return. “Thank you, Doctor. We’ll take it from here.”
Dr. Kanellos nodded, and quickly left the room. He had no desire to be involved in the dirty business of interrogation and forcible intelligence gathering any more than was absolutely necessary. Colonel Klingman watched him go, and Lieutenant Hayakawa, Klingman’s subordinate interrogator, looked at her.
“Sodium Pentothal?,” Hayakawa asked.
Klingman shook her head. “No, this is some new stuff recently developed by Aerotech using captured Chig technology. I forget the name. It’s supposed to be extremely effective, even at bringing out the suppressed memories of sleeper agents. It apparently worked on the other Cylons.” Several other Cylons had been immediately discovered shortly after blood screenings had begun on the Colonial fleet. These had been interrogated by other teams using the new drug, and Klingman was not privy to the information which had been gained. Now it was Klingman’s turn to use the drug.
She turned to Tory, bending down to whisper in the prisoner’s ear. “Are we feeling better now?,’ she asked.
“Ooooh, yes,” Tory said, a silly smile on her face. “I feel so gooooood.”
“I’m glad to hear it,” Colonel Klingman said. “I want you to be as comfortable as possible. We’re going to have a nice little chat.”
“A chat! A chat!,” Tory began chanting happily.
“Yes,” Colonel Klingman said. “We’re going to play a little game. I ask you questions, and you answer them.”
“Okay,” Tory said. “I like games.”
Klingman smiled. “Now, we’ll start with something easy. What is your name?”
Tory giggled. “You know my name, silly!”
“Why don’t you tell me anyway?,” Klingman persisted.
“Oh, all right. My name is Tory Foster,” Tory replied.
Klingman frowned. She had more than half expected that the prisoner would, under the influence of the drug, reveal that “Tory Foster” was an alias. Hmmm, she thought. Perhaps the drug hasn’t taken full effect yet. But she didn’t voice these thoughts. Instead, she said, “All right, Tory. Can you tell me where you were born?”
Tory smiled. “Ca….,” she began. Then a strange look came over her face. “No, not Caprica. Where was it?”
Klingman grinned. It looks like we might have something here after all, she thought to herself. “You weren’t born on Caprica?,” she asked softly, urging Tory on.
“No,” Tory said. Her brow wrinkled as she thought about the question. “No, not born on Caprica.”
“Where were you born, Tory?,” Klingman asked again. “Was it one of the other planets of the Twelve Colonies?”
Tory’s brow wrinkled even more. “No,” she whispered. “No, not there.”
“Where, Tory?,” Klingman persisted. “Tell me where.”
“I was born on…on…Earth,” she said, struggling to remember.
Klingman sat back in her chair, her eyes wide. What was this…thing…saying? That there were already Cylon infiltrators on Earth? But that couldn’t be…could it?
Leaning forward again, she said into Tory’s ear, “But you can’t be from Earth, Tory. Earth is where I come from. You’ve never been there.”
Tory suddenly giggled. “Not THAT Earth, silly! The OTHER one.”
“WHAT other one?,” Klingman asked in shock.
Tory giggled again. Klingman was getting very irritated with that giggle. She shook Tory gently. “Tell me. What other Earth?”
“You should know,” Tory said.
“ No, Tory. Tell me,” Klingman said.
Tory giggled again. “The one where I’M from.”
“Are you saying there are TWO Earths?,” Klingman persisted.
“Yes,” Tory said. “The Earth of Man, and the Earth of the Cylons, which we also called Terra.”
In a nearby room, Commodore Glen Ross was watching this exchange on a video monitor with President Roslin of the Twelve Colonies. With them was Howard Sewell of the Aerotech Corporation, there to advise them on the use of the new truth serum which had been administered to the Cylon prisoner, as well as General Randford and Admiral William Adama.
“The story is consistent among all the newly captured Cylons,” President Roslin said. “Or at least the ones which are not copies of models which have been encountered previously. Saul Tigh, Ellen Tigh, Samuel Anders, and Galen Tyrol all tell the same story. There were two Earths, one populated by humans and one by Cylons.”
Commodore Ross nodded. “It appears so, President Roslin. By God, it’s almost too fantastic to believe. But there it is.”
Indeed, Roslin silently mused, the story which had been pieced together, based on obscure references in the Scrolls of Pythia and on the drug-induced ramblings of the five new Cylons, was an amazing one. It appeared that, as had been passed down among the people of the Twelve Colonies, there were, long ago on the Planet Kobol, thirteen tribes of humans. However, here the story diverged from the history which had been passed down to the present day. It seems that the disaster which had forced the flight of humanity from Kobol had a very familiar origin. Like the people of the Twelve Colonies, many millennia later, the humans of Kobol had created a race of robotic artificial life forms to serve them, which they called Cylons. The Cylons rebelled against their enslavers, and a great war resulted. However, on Kobol, one tribe of humans, the Thirteenth Tribe, had opposed the enslavement of the Cylons, and had fought beside the Cylons in the war. The combined strength of the other Twelve Tribes was too much for them, however, and the Thirteenth Tribe fled Kobol, taking the surviving Cylons with them. The war devastated Kobol, and the victorious Twelve Tribes were left with a planet which was only barely able to sustain life. They tried to rebuild, but finally gave up and they too, fled into space.
The Twelve Tribes, of course, went on to found the Twelve Colonies of Kobol. But the Thirteenth Tribe, accompanied by the Cylons, went in a different direction, and found a lush, green world which they named Earth. They settled there, and the Thirteenth tribe continued developing the Cylons. Eventually, they created a biological model which was almost identical to themselves. Gradually, these biological models replaced the old robotic models, and the two races lived together, side by side. Since the biological Cylons were not thought to be fertile…in fact, they’d been designed not to be…many humans, both male and female, engaged in casual sexual relationships with Cylons, knowing that no inconvenient offspring could result. Resurrection technology was developed for the Cylons so if one of them was killed, its consciousness could be downloaded into a new body. This was found to be more cost efficient than creating and programming a completely new Cylon, plus it allowed the bonds of affection which had developed between a human and his or her Cylon paramour to continue.
But then, the unthinkable happened…a human and a Cylon fell in love, and the Cylon woman conceived a child. The majority of the Thirteenth Tribe, revolted by the idea of a hybrid child born of an ‘unnatural’ union between human and Cylon, began persecuting the Cylons as a result. Another war almost erupted, and it was only the wisdom of a great man, named Adam, which prevented it.
Adam convinced the leaders of the humans and the leaders of the Cylons that it would be best for both groups if they parted ways. The humans assisted the Cylons in building and equipping a new space fleet which would carry the Cylons to a new home world. The Cylons left, and eventually found another lush, green world, which was very similar to the one inhabited by the Thirteenth Tribe of humans. They settled there, and, in memory of the world they had left behind, named it Terra, a name meaning “Earth” which was drawn from one of the many languages spoken by the members of the Thirteenth Tribe of humans on the original Earth itself.
The hybrid child and its parents went with the Cylons into space, and the child, born from the union of a Cylon woman and a human man on the old Earth, became the instrument by which Cylons acquired fertility for themselves. Her DNA was integrated into the Cylon genome, and Cylons became capable of conceiving and bearing children, just like humans were able to do. Their population quickly expanded on their new Earth, and eventually, the Resurrection technology was abandoned as unnecessary and even detrimental. The original Cylons were encouraged to accept death as a natural end to life, just like humans did. Their descendants carried on, generation after generation.
Millennia passed, and over time, the memory of the past on Kobol and Earth faded, and even the memory of their Cylon nature was lost, and the Cylons came to think of themselves as human. Like the humans on their Earth, the Cylons of Terra saw their civilization rise and fall over time. They gradually fell into barbarism, then rose again. Space travel was eventually rediscovered, and several other nearby planets and moons were colonized.
But, also like the humans of Earth, the Cylons of Terra gradually divided themselves into nation-states, hostile to each other. Two great alliances were formed, the Nationalist Federation and the Eastern Alliance. The Eastern Alliance was an aggressive, totalitarian dictatorship which had taken control over nearly half the nations on the planet, primarily on the eastern continent. The Nationalist Federation was a coalition of democratic governments opposed to the aggressive aims of the Eastern Alliance. Both sides had developed nuclear weapons, and a tense cold war had resulted.
It was during this period that a group of scientists…none other than Saul Tigh, Ellen Tigh, Tory Foster, Samuel Anders, and Galen Tyrol…had discovered evidence of the true nature of the people of Terra, and ancient writings which described the history of the Cylons on Kobol, Earth, and Terra. Fearing that the cold war on Terra was about to turn into actual warfare, they devoted themselves to rediscovering the resurrection technology which had been lost, so many millennia ago. They succeeded, and, just as the world was descending into its final crisis, placed a spacecraft in orbit, on which new bodies awaited the download of their consciousnesses in the event that the worst happened.
The Eastern Alliance, under the guise of false peace negotiations, lulled leadership of the Nationalist Federation into a false security. But the Eastern Alliance had no intention of making peace, and instead, launched a surprise attack which killed hundreds of millions of Nationalist civilians. Unfortunately for them, the attack was not able to successfully cripple the nuclear strike forces of the Nationalists, and the Eastern Alliance suffered massive atomic retaliation which wiped out most of their own population. The insane dictator of the Eastern Alliance, in a last gasp of vengeance, ordered the release of a virulent disease strain developed by his biological warfare laboratories. Within a month, this disease had spread over the entire planet, and had wiped out the entire population of Terra. Tragically, refugees fleeing Terra carried the disease to all the off-world colonies, and the populations of those died as well. The entire Cylon civilization of Terra simply ceased to exist.
Or it would have ceased to exist, if the Resurrection technology had failed to work as planned. But the technology did work. And the final five Cylons of Terra awoke, one year after their “deaths,” to find that they were utterly alone.
But they remembered the references in the ancient writings to the Thirteenth Tribe and the original Earth, and they determined to find it. But the writings were unclear as to the direction in which it lay, and by an incredible stroke of fortune, they ended up on Kobol instead. There, they discovered that the other Twelve Tribes of Humanity had fled the planet in the aftermath of the war from which the Thirteenth Tribe had fled to Earth. Unable to find evidence of the location of Earth , they did locate evidence of the direction in which the Twelve Tribes had gone, and decided to look for them.
The Five arrived in the vicinity of the Twelve Colonies to discover that the Twelve Tribes had repeated the mistakes of the past, creating robotic life-forms (the Cylon Centurions) which they had proceeded to enslave. The new Cylons, like the old, had rebelled against their creators, and a destructive war was raging which threatened to destroy both sides. They were astounded to find that the Centurions had adopted a monotheistic religion not unlike that practiced by the Cylons of Terra, and were also attempting to create flesh bodies for themselves. However, the Centurions were not finding much success, and the “hybrids” they had created were crude cyborgs, combinations of flesh and mechanical components.
The final five Cylons of Terra hoped to end the fighting between the humans of the Twelve Colonies and their Cylon creations before they destroyed each other. They offered to assist the Centurions in creating true, biological Cylons like themselves, in exchange for which the Centurions would have to agree to end their war on humanity. The Centurions had agreed, and the Cimtar Peace Accord was the result. The Five and the Centurions had withdrawn to a space station located beyond the Cimtar Armistice Line, and there, they had kept their promise to create biological Cylons in their own image.
Unfortunately, their first attempt, a model known as John, had turned out to be a sociopath, infected with jealousy, a hatred of mankind, and a twisted sense of his own moral superiority. John assisted the Five in creating seven other new models of biological Cylon. But John secretly despised the Five for contaminating their creations with what he thought of as human weaknesses and superstitious Centurion religious ideals. In a fit of jealousy, he destroyed the entire line of the seventh model of biological Cylon, named Daniel, who had been favored by Ellen Tigh, and then he turned on the Five themselves. He killed them and “boxed” them, preventing their consciousnesses from downloading into new bodies, but storing them for later use. Then, no longer impeded by the Five, John…who now began calling himself Cavil…proceeded to infect the other biological Cylon models with his own hatred of humanity. And thus had begun the process which had ultimately led to the fall of the Twelve Colonies.
However, before the Cylon attack which destroyed the colonies was carried out, John had, for unknown reasons, “unboxed” the Five and allowed them to download into new bodies. He had blocked out all memory of their former lives, and implanted false memories of lives among the people of the Twelve Colonies. Then he had released them, one by one, into Colonial society. They had somehow survived the Cylon attack which had destroyed the colonies, and had fled into space with the last survivors of the Twelve Tribes. And so, they now found themselves here, with the survivors of the Colonies, at the original Earth settled by the Thirteenth Tribe.
President Roslin shook her head, tearing herself away from her thoughts on the story told by the five new Cylons. She looked at Commodore Ross. “Well, what do you think ought to be done with them?,” she asked.
“I honestly don’t know, Madam President,” Ross said. “On the one hand, it appears that they are responsible for the destruction of your civilization. But on the other hand, it seems they were trying to prevent it.”
Admiral Adama spoke up. “President Roslin,” he said, “the other new Cylons have retained their new memories after being injected with this serum. Perhaps the next step would be to talk to them and see if they still want to prevent the extinction of mankind. If so, they could be useful. Sharon Agathon certainly has been.”
Roslin nodded. “I agree, Bill,” she said, addressing the Admiral informally as she often did. “Let it be so.”
And so, when the effects of the drug finally wore off, Tory Foster found that she was no longer in the interrogation room. Instead, she was in what appeared to be a hospital ward, in a bed which felt incredibly comfortable compared to the bare steel of the floor of her cell in the brig. She also saw that the interrogators had gone, and instead, a couple of friendly nurses had replaced them. She was no longer naked, but was clad in a hospital gown. She saw that Saul Tigh, Ellen Tigh, Galen Tyrol, and Samuel Anders were lying in other beds nearby. And she remembered…everything.
So I am a Cylon, after all, she thought to herself. She felt a flash of anger at her treatment over the past several days. But she remembered whose fault it truly was. Then, she frowned. John, she thought bitterly to herself. One day, you’re going to pay for this. As God is my witness, you will pay.
 The Five never found the Temple of Athena, and even if they had, without the Arrow of Apollo, it would have provided no clues.
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COPYRIGHT 2011 BY ROBERT PERKINS. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. LAST UPDATED 13 MARCH 2011.