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The Adjudicator Chapter (Cover Art)

Chapter 42 - The Adjudicator[]

The Triad
Tharkad, Tharkad Star System
Lyran Commonwealth
Early 3160

[Multi-National Broadcast between Nations & Clans...]

<<...she flipped the coin into the air, and it froze.  "I have a solution." she said, "Diplomacy.  Admit your part in it. Explain yourselves-not to me, to them, the states, the Clans.  Offer them an olive branch, offer them some attempt at restitution for abandoning them when Kerensky left, when you let it all fall apart and could have done something, you can still do do it." says Clarrisa Ngo.

<<She laid imaginary hands on imaginary wood, "I yield the remainder of my time to the rebuttal.">>

<<The second image, inset, was Clarissa Ngo unconscious, on life support, in a hospital room.>>

The third inset image was of a middle-aged man who could be Devlin Stone's younger twin or eldest son.  "She was very persuasive, Archon, First Prince, Elected Prince, Chancellor, Captain-General, and Coordinator.  My government has decided to attempt to open a diplomatic Dialogue.  My first request, is that you suspend military operations and withdraw from the Rasalhague Dominion, Archon, Your siege of Rasalhague is counter productive to improving harmony."

"I noticed you didn't include Stone in this call." Danai Centrella-Liao's voice came over the channel.

"Cousin Devlin could not be reached. Likewise, his chief opponent, Khan Alaric Ward, also has proven unavailable.  As Acting Pro-Tem Director-General of the Terran Hegemony, I am formally requesting a cease-fire to avoid any further unnecessary bloodshed.  In their case I am afraid the answer to what your officer has quaintly termed the question is 'yes', and until we are free to deal with that situation, attempting to convince either of them otherwise will be..futile, but there is no reason for the rest of the inheritors of Star League to be embroiled in a feud between stubborn men."

"Mister Cameron, you have to know the Star League is no longer an entity."

"However it once was. You are the inheritors of both its glories and mistakes. As is my own...small...realm, we also have had some role in the troubles your peoples have endured for the last four centuries. This too must be addressed if there is ever to be a future for any of our progeny on either side of my, let your investigator put it in the best words."

The video of the courtroom/LSD lightshow continued.  <<"You need to stop living in the past and start learning from the past. My Grandmother once said-">>

Image shifts to a video clip, the Estates General in 3058, teenage Elizabeth Ngo standing before the assembled delegates, <<"We have forgotten so many things we no longer have names for what we've LOST! We don't know what's been taken from us, because we have forgotten even the words to Describe it!">>

and back to Clarissa.  <<"-and she meant it, she had it inscribed at her university back home-the one she built fully intending to teach civilian topics, the arts of peace.  Peace, like war is not an answer. It is a series of choices. A collection of questions that must be answered, but the biggest part of peace is honesty. The first casualty of war, is truth. The second through infinity are usually those left unable to defend themselves, but the first thing to be tossed out the lock in war, is the truth, and responsibility, you can't have a peace rooted in a lie-that is the seed of future wars.">>

The image of Jon Cameron went active again, "I'm offering the truth. As the first step in finding the answer to peace, but I need something to show this isn't a waste.  The second thing is responsibility and if possible, what restitution we can give for our part in the parade of horror that came from a decision in 2781."

"Is she still comatose?"  Trillian Steiner-Davion asked.

"Yes." said Jon Cameron

"When she wakes, send her home.  When she arrives, you will have your cease fire-and not before." Trillian stated, "I will not have this begun with hostages."

[On Tharkad after the transmission concluded...]

"I'm going." Sharon Ngo said.

"Going where?" asked Trillian.

"I sent her on this.  You might have cut the orders, but I originated them. Jesus Christ, Trillian, she's my niece, she's family, and they...I'm going."

Trillian frowned, "Take the Beagle and an escort group, and don't turn this into a shooting war, Sharon." she said.

"I'll do my best not to." said Sharon

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