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Chapter 19 - The Absolute Zero[]

Geneva, Terra
Sol Star System
January, 3159 CE

Devlin felt horror in his chest, as the news releases from Sian played.  I didn't order this.

"Ladies and Gentlemen, the Chancellor of the Capellan Confederation!"

Danai Centrella-Liao stepped up to a microphone. Behind her, the wounded leaders of four nations stood...well, three of them were wounded.  Alaric looked fresh as a daisy, even as he laid a protective hand on Nikol Marik's shoulder.

"At zero six hundred hours on the morning of January 20th, 3159 a force attacked Sian with a massed Naval assault. The targets of that assault are standing behind me on the stage...those that aren't sitting in a wheelchair, anyway.  This cowardly and disproportionate assault was repelled, at the cost of six hundred and seventy one foreign escort personnel, and One Thousand Capellan citizens."

She seemed to be looking over the assembled media.

I didn't order this! desperately thought Devlin Stone.

"We have identified bodies from the wreckage of the attackers. They are human. They were augmented with implanted technologies. They were working in cooperation with a hostile power that is opposed to even allowing for the potential for a peace."

She waited, he noticed, for the shocked media in the audience to settle down.

"We know this, because assassinations were attempted against both the First Prince of the Federated Suns and the Coordinator of Worlds for the Draconis Combine.  In those cases the attackers were from within their own staff. However, at the exact same moment, a bomb was used to try to kill the Captain-General of the Free Worlds League. A similar assassin was sent after the Archon of the Lyran Commonwealth.  Those attempts were thwarted by the courageous actions of members of their own staff, resulting in the death of four heroic people."  she draws in a breath, and lets it out.

"The entity responsible for the January Twentieth attack, did so because he...did not want us to meet. They were a afraid to allow us to even speak to one another. Then acted in a panic at what we might do as a direct result of speaking to one another...well, we're still talking, we're still here."



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