Originally posted October 6, 2009 at 4:00am
They sat around a conference table deep beneath the slayers compound. The two strangers clad in black leather sat at one end, while the rest of Leonard Cross’s command team occupied the other. Cross sat closest to the strangers, his penetrating gaze boring into them, trying to perceive some hidden fact, to glean some truth from their actions.
One of the Commanders, an older gentleman, lean and spry, with a patch pulled tight over one eye, twisted his hands around one another nervously. “So you’re telling us that there are human beings, the same as us, on planets around the galaxy?”
The duo was calm, leaning back in their chairs and staring at their inquisitors with cool eyes. The man nodded once affirmatively.
A woman dressed in a dark business suit spoke up now. “How do we know that we are genetically identical to you? Isn’t it possible that this is just a coincidence?”
The man with the eye patch broke in again, “Yes, or more likely a trick. Genetic alterations, some sort of advanced plastic surgery. We know some of them can shift their shapes and walk around looking like true humans.”
The woman from the ship spoke now. Her voice had an attractive lilt which was dampened by the cold tone of her words. “We are willing to submit to any medical testing that you wish. Our entire crew is. “
Cross eyed the two carefully, his gaze still fiercely observing they’re every movement. “And you seek asylum from us…”
“We are a group of human beings that have joined together for one cause, the survival of our species.” The woman in black leaned forward now, and her intense eyes met Cross’s own. “We realized the same thing that you did, but on a much larger scale. Given a long enough timeline, everyone comes to war. Eventually one species will dominate the others, or eliminate them.”
She leaned back once more into her relaxed pose, but her eyes grew darker, her brow knitting together slightly, bringing tiny creases to the flawless beauty of her skin.
“We are dedicated to the survival of humanity. Wherever they may live. For this cause we fight, we fight anyone and everyone. We fight with our last breath. We fight with every tear, every drop of blood that we have. We throw our lives against an impossible dream, and we see our comrades die every day because of it. “
Leonard Malcolm Cross began to stroke his chin, his gaze finally leaving them to stare down at the oak table in silent contemplation.
She continued. “Because of this we are labeled terrorists, criminals. Even human governments hunt us down. We’ve been chased across the galaxy, hounded, harassed, and hunted constantly until we have nowhere left to go.”
Cross looked up once more. “How did you find us?”
“Your radio broadcast,” she answered sharply, and then her tone softened. “We heard your words and… they moved us… “
The man at her side glared at her angrily for a moment, but she returned the look, and he quickly backed down.
“If you allow us to stay, we can regroup here. We can rebuild, and add your strength to our own. Then, within just a few years we will be ready to continue our mission, refreshed, reinforced, and ready to take on anyone who opposes us. “
Leonard Cross’s eyes had a far away look in them, as if he were staring directly into the future itself. Then suddenly they refocused, and he turned his attention back on the woman.
“Do you have a way to communicate? To reach the disparate humans on the planets across the galaxy?”
Then she smiled, small thin lips pulling back into what could almost be called a sneer. “Yes… yes we can.”
Cross leaned back in his chair and considered the possibilities.