The Consortium Council gathers to discuss recent events, ranging from developments on Demaria to the capture of the shadowtrappers menacing Centauri to Ist’thol’mek’s application for Consortium membership.

Council Chambers

This is the Consortium Council Offical Chambers, where all of the Consortium’s important decisions are made. The room is centered around a large, black, ovular confrence table. This table has six seats on each side and one at the head. At each place on the table is a small computer console and a microphone, for the use of council members. In the center of the table is a pyramid-shaped device; a holograpic projector.

Security officers patrol this room constantly when it is not in use, making sure no one gets in except for the members and their aides.

Dahan floats into the chamber. Suspended from its collar is a 14 inch diameter bubble of a transparent material, inside of which rests the wriggling Marda. Dahan floats over, and takes its place at the table.

From the balcony above: Denick walks in quitely, and takes a seat near the front as well.

Marda looks about curiously.

From the balcony above: Blackface steps in, sitting in a chair near the back. He rests his cap on his lap.

Dahan plugs in a cable from it’s collar to the table. Soon, a computerized voice says, “Vocalizer on-line.”

Fimkin is sitting in his chair, studying his furry fingers with sleepy intensity.

Avocet’s weary Odarite aide sets the metallic box on the platform beside the general’s seat. Avocet nods, then goes back to studying his datapad display.

Volnarra has arrived.

Dahan turns its head a little to the left, then to the right. “I see we still have a few guests that need to arrive. We will wait for the Mekke delagation.”

Several Mekke guards, their black carapaces gleaming under the lights, scurry into the chamber through the archway, taking up positions on either side of the arch.

Volnarra strides in quickly, her gown flaring about her legs, her skin a pale red. “Greetings, please forgive my tardiness.”

The guards begin clacking their mandibles in uniform rhythm, rapping wooden staffs against the floor.

Saber turns to look towards the door, raising an eyebrow..

Marda watches those entering, spending more time on the guards.

Datriq glaces at the mekke, looking them over carefully

Dahan nods slightly towards Volnarra, “You are not late yet.” It lifts a pair of tentacles up to the table, and rests them together on its edge.

One of the Mekke guards turns to the room at large as the pounding increases and announces, “Her majesty, Hadrix, queen of Ist’thol’mek, the heartbeat of Hive Prime.”

Volnarra takes her place at the table as the Vollistan representive.

Hadrix arrives from Lounge Area .

From the balcony above: Snowmist pricks an ear in interest at the Mekkes’ declaraction, straightening slightly to peer at the entrance to the council chambers.

Dahan rises a few inches into the air respectfully in the V.I.P.’s arrival. The bubble with Marda is carried with the motion by the cords that connect it to the president’s collar.

The Mekke guards cease their pounding at a signal from the lead guardian, who receives his cue from the queen, who bows her rounded head in greeting to him, her compound eyes gleaming under the lights. She clacks her mandibles and nods respectively toward the Council assembly, then takes a place in the VIP area. Her guards move to escort her.

Datriq looks at the queen, with a slight interest.

Fimkin stifles a yawn and reaches for a handful of juicy berries from a wooden bowl before him.

Sharpeye’s eyes flick to the queen, and then each of her contingent of guards.

Saber hmphs softly, “What an entrance..” he turns back to the table, “Perhaps I should hire a few people for me..” he mutters under his breath..

From the balcony above: Cottington quirks his eyebrows in interest at the proceedings.

Dahan says through its computerized voice, “It is an honor to have you here with us, Queen Hadrix of Ist’thol’mek.”

~Yes,~ the queen responds. ~We are honored by your consideration. Please, do proceed.~

From the balcony above: Blackface leans back in his chair, apparently not finding this really unusual.

Volnarra rises slightly in her seat and nods respectfully to the Queen, then sits again.

Dahan tips its head towards Hadrix, before pressing a button on its computer unit. “I hearby call this session of the Consortium Council to order. We have much to discuss today, but some of it is not for the public’s ears. The first session today shall be open to the public, where we shall vote on the Mekke’s application into the Consortium, the Castor complaint against the C.S.C., and the recent revelations from Demaria. The second session shall be a private one where we shall discuss all matters of national security.”

Dahan motions its tentacle towards Hadrix. “We shall hear from Queen Hadrix first, if she pleases, about the Mekke application to the Stellar Consortium.”

From the balcony above: Freespirit arrives from Visitors Level .

From the balcony above: Snowmist is sitting near the back in an aisle seat.

From the balcony above: Freespirit enters the balcony, swordless, and sits in the back, pardoning himself politely as he slides past another Demarian.

Dahan descends a few inches, resting the ends of its tentacles on the floor.

Escorted by two of her guardians, the Mekke queen skitters forward, approaching the council platform. She clacks her mandibles, lifting her compound eyes toward the assembled councillors, emanating an attitude that suggests she is far more accustomed to seeing things from a higher vantage point. ~The world Ist’thol’mek wishes to join its resources with the Stellar Consortium in an alliance that would complete the wall between our worlds and the bloodthirsty Nalls of the Parallax.~

Hadrix interlinks the claws of her hands, awaiting the response of the Council.

Fimkin munches on another handful of berries.

The computer terminal of Volnarra chimes softly as the Vollistan representive signals to be heard.

Dahan waits a moment, then says, “Thank you, your highness. We will now hear questions or comments from the council.”

Dahan waves a tentacle towards Volnarra, “The Vollistan delegate as the floor.”

From the balcony above: Snowmist sinks a bit in her seat, enough to let the backrest’s edge prop her head up. Propping one foot on her other leg’s knee and slitting her eyes, she appears almost to have fallen into a doze.

Volnarra rises from her seat. “Many years ago, we of Vollista and the citizens of Ist’thol’mek were both held deep in the shackles of the Parallax. We had common ground even then. Now that we are both free, it would be fitting that we share that common ground once again.” Her aura turns a bright yellow. “For the sake of our defenses against the Nalls, I believe that we should allow the Mekke entry into the Consortium.” She then sits.

The computer terminal of Avocet chimes softly as the Defense Secretary signals to be heard.

Dahan nods towards Volnarra, then speaks. “General Avocet?”

Smiling tightly, the general stands and nods toward Dahan, then looks to the queen. “Personally, I’ve got nothing against granting Consortium membership to Ist’thol’mek – although I do worry about spreading Vanguard resources too thin.” That said, he settles back into his chair.

Dahan says, “Thank you General for your thoughts, but I’m sure we all have faith in your forces. Now, I do have a question for Queen Hadrix. Your majesty, I want to make sure we all understand what this will mean. That Ist’thol’mek would become a full memeber of the Stellar Consortium, with all the rights and responsibilities. Your people would be subject to Consortium law as every other member world is. And like every other member world, you shall have the rights to determine your own form of government, set the laws for your planet, and maintain a militia if you feel you need one. Do you understand all the ramificaitons of this, Queen Hadrix, or have I misunderstood your application?’

Hadrix clacks her mandibles and bows her round head. ~We understand.~

From the balcony above: Denick glances at her, and nods a greeting as well.

The computer terminal of Fimkin chimes softly as the Castori representative signals to be heard.

Dahan nods towards the Queen, “Thank you, your highness. Ubercast Fimkin?”

Fimkin yawns, blinks sleepily, then grabs his wooden bowl off the table and offers it to the queen. “Berry?”

Saber chuckles softly..

From the balcony above: Denick stifles a chuckle himself…

From the balcony above: Snowmist’s mouth quirks.

Volnarra blinks, then turns orange.

From the balcony above: Blackface smirks.

The queen clacks her mandibles. ~Perhaps…later.~

From the balcony above: Freespirit hrms, rubbing his muzzle in contemplation.

Fimkin shrugs, then grabs another handful and munches them.

Sharpeye twitches a whisker in silent amusement.

Dahan lays a tentacle on its baby carrier in a clear display of affection. “Very well. Is there anything else anyone wishes to say before we vote?”

Saber shakes his head slightly..

Marda looks up and taps the bubble near the tentacle.

Avocet shakes his head.

Dahan speaks, “Very well. Then each member of the council shall vote Aye or Nay on the matter of Ist’thol’mek’s membership into the Stellar Consortium, where an Aye vote shall mean the membership of Ist’thol’mek into the Consortium, and Nay for a vote against Ist’thol’mek’s membership.”

Saber votes “Aye.”

Volnarra votes “Aye.”

Datriq votes “Aye.”

Fimkin sets his berry bowl on the table, his furred fingers stained with purple juice, and begins to vote.

Fimkin votes “Aye.”

Avocet votes “Aye.”

Sharpeye votes “Aye.”

The fish-like G’ahnlo stands, and says, “G’ahnlo votes Nay. We don’t want the Vanguard spread out, allowing for easy attack of any of our worlds. Nay!”

The G’ahnlo representive votes “Nay.”

The Sivadian stands up, and says, “We stand with G’ahnlo. Nay!”

Grainer arrives from Lounge Area .

From the balcony above: Freespirit hphs, yellow eyes watching impassively.

Grainer heads into Lounge Area .

The Qua representative stands, and say, “We shall accept Ist’thol’mek into our union. Aye.”

The Quaquan representive votes “Aye.”

The robotic Phyrrian stands, and says, “Phyrria has no stance on this matter. Abstain.”

The Phyrrian representive abstains.

From the balcony above: Grainer arrives from Visitors Level .

The Ganymede representatives says, “We welcome Ist’thol’mek into the Stellar Consortium with open arms. Aye.”

The Ganymedian representive votes “Aye.”

The Martian representive votes “Aye.”

The Zangali stands, “We do not agree with the human delagate from Mars. Nay.”

The Zangali representive votes “Nay.”

The Earth representive votes “Aye.”

The Minister of the Economy says, “We don’t have resources for charity. Nay.”

The Economic Adviser votes “Nay.”

The Chief Diplomat says, “I disagree. We must remain open to friendships, for who is not our friend often becomes the enemy. Aye.”

The Chief Diplomat votes “Aye.”

From the balcony above: Grainer walks in as quietly as possible and takes a seat.

Hadrix observes the calculation of votes through compound eyes that gleam under the lights.

Dahan floats up about a foot, still resting a tentacle on Marda’s bubble. “Then let it be known that with eleven votes for, four votes against, and one abstention that Ist’thol’mek becomes a member world in the Stellar Consortium.”

Dahan says, “Now, the next matter for our discussion is the Castori complaint against the C.S.C. I’m afraid that the C.S.C. representative isn’t here today, but he did leave a message. I shall play it for you now.”

Hadrix bows her head in appreciation for the vote. The Royal Guardians begin to thump their staffs on the floor, drumming them in salute.

Fimkin glances, with heightened interest, toward the Centauran president – munching a mouthful of berries.

From the center of the table, the face of Ari appears on the main holoviewer.

Datriq stays oddly silent, but continues to observe the other representatives carefully.

Ari says, “The CSC was not aware until accusations were brought against it that the actions of any of its agents were objectionable to anyone outside of the CSC. Also, it is the position of the CSC that the accusations of harrassment that have been brought against it are not well enough supported to require that any kind of action be taken against the agents in question.”

Fimkin arches his furry brows.

Marda watches the face with curiousity.

Ari continues, “The fact that an agent of the CSC wishes to investigate the death of a Fringe bounty hunter can be called harrassment, but only by extremely near-sighted people. In order to protect the security of the Consortium, the CSC is in an ongoing mission to ensure that any threats to that security are thoroughly understood and, where possible, minimized or eliminated. This includes investigating the organization and actions of various internal and external entities that could bring such a threat against the Consortium. It is, as a part of one such investigatory operation, that the CSC deemed it necessary for its agents to investigate the death of the bounty hunter in question. The results of this investigation will form an integral part of the CSC’s security knowledgebase, which it uses to advise this council on matters of security when asked to or when it feels advisement is necessary.”

Volnarra glows green, watching and listening.

Sharpeye quirks his lips, an ear swiveling in the direction of the holoviewer.

Concluding, Ari says, “The CSC and its agents have not stepped over any lines or infringed on any rights by conducting this investigation, and this investigation has a valid purpose. If people feel they are being harrassed by the CSC or its agents, they are free to refrain from cooperating and, if the case is severe enough, contact the CSC’s public relations department and issue a complaint. The CSC is not above the law and has no special rights or privelages; only responsibilities to the Consortium Council, which it has in the past and will in the future fulfilled in an efficient and effective manner.”

Avocet shakes his head, chuckling softly.

The face disappears at the holo-viewer displays the Consortium emblem before deactivating.

From the balcony above: Snowmist yawns and takes out a hand-held portable gaming module, bringing up a classic Terran game called Tetris, hastily muting its tinny music and cheery bleeps.

Dahan lifts a tentacle towards the Castori. “Ubercast Fimkin, you have the floor if you wish it.”

Fimkin sets down his berry bowl and nods, climbing up onto his seat.

From the balcony above: Denick glances at the source of the beeps for a moment, then shakes his head.

Fimkin points at the empty CSC director’s chair. “He does not even bother to come before this Council to answer these charges in person, and instead composes a carefully crafted press release! He does not respect this Council – or the sovereignty of Castor. He sent a looming Demarian agent to intimidate my people into cooperating with an investigation that has, in my mind, no bearing on the safety and security of the Stellar Consortium. A Fringe bounty hunter, killed in the act of hunting down someone on my world – killed in the commission of a crime on MY world – and the CSC is poking its nose in to bring the killer of Jerico Davies to justice? WHERE are the priorities? Why are we not doing more to investigate such matters as Lord Fagin and his Legion?”

Sharpeye’s curious green eyes come to rest on the ranting Castori.

His fur slightly ruffled, the Castori Ubercast settles back down on his chair, grabs his berry bowl and eats furiously.

From the balcony above: Snowmist pricks an ear at the mention of Fagin and Legion, eyes flicking up to glance over Fimkin and the council chamber briefly before returning to her gaming.

Datriq nods slightly to the Castor’s remarks

From the balcony above: Freespirit hrms, remaining impassive in his seat though his yellow eyes remain alertly on the scene.

Dahan nods towards the Castori. “Unfortunately, he is not here to answer your complaints properly. I can only guess that this matter might relate to Consortium security, but I don’t know. But thank you for sharing this complaint against us, Ubercast.”

The computer terminal of Avocet chimes softly as the Defense Secretary signals to be heard.

Dahan motions towards the General to speak.

Marda moves its tentacles in wave for one complete rotation, looking about.

From the balcony above: Snowmist gives a muffled groan as she miscalculates the fall of a block and plugs up three rows of spaces; a most dire situation since she’s nearly to the top and the speed of the blocks are increasing steadily with the levels. Sparing one hand briefly to slap her forehead, she quickly returns to gaming furiously, leaning forward in her seat in her enthusiasm.

Saber taps his fingers against the tabletop slowly as the Ubercast speaks..

Avocet stands, nodding to Fimkin, then glances toward Dahan. “Mr. President, I too find it rather appalling that Consortium taxpayers’ money is being spent to investigate the death of a clearly incompetent Fringe bounty hunter, killed in the line of his grim duty on a sovereign world. What if Ubercast Fimkin Churimichim pulled the trigger? Or some other Castori authority? It doesn’t matter. Jerico Davies was a Fringe citizen. He’s not our concern. The CSC should better prioritize its investigations. If the director can’t bother to attend this meeting and show the matter the proper respect, then perhaps we should compose a memo right back at him, spelling things out for him.”

Datriq nods swiftly this time, obviously in full agreement with the general’s words.

Avocet takes his seat.

From the balcony above: Denick glances at the game again, and locks his gaze on it, particularly the on/off switch.

From the balcony above: Snowmist blinks and almost releases the outraged exclamation that she’s surely contemplating from her expression.

Dahan thinks about this for a moment, then bobbles with affirmation. “Even though I disagree about the value of a life, for even such as that murder, I think that you all may be right in the C.S.C. in most respects. General, you may write that memo, and assistance with it from other members of the council shall be welcome. Is that satisfactory method of handling the problem for everyone?”

Fimkin nods slowly. “That is acceptable to the Castori,” he mumbles around a mouthful of berries, his lips stained purple.

Avocet nods. “Works for me, Mr. President.”

Saber nods, “”

Volnarra nods, her aura green.

Datriq nods “That is good.”

Sharpeye nods. “That is acceptable.”

Dahan bobbles, “Than it shall be done. Now, the next topic of discussion is the recent Demarian crisis.”

From the balcony above: Denick smiles, turning his gaze away from the game again.

From the balcony above: Snowmist hastily checks over the module’s battery levels. When that proves to be adequate for another few days, she turns it over to see that the switch had been turned to off–when she is sure she never touched it, even in her enthusiasm. Frowning at the unexplained occurrence, she happens to glance up just as Denick turns away. She scowls at the lieutenant and sticks her tongue out at his back.

Dahan says, “I’m afraid I haven’t been well informed to the details of this matter, so I leave it up to you, members of the council, to explain what has happened and propose any possible courses of action.”

The computer terminal of Sharpeye chimes softly as the Demarian representive signals to be heard.

Dahan extends a tentacle towards Shapeeye. “We shall hear from the Demarian representative.”

From the balcony above: Grainer shifts his weight in his seat and leaning forward, himself not knowing a lot about the Demarian situation.

Dahan rubs the bubble in which Marda is lovingly.

Marda drums a few tentacles.

Volnarra pensively fingers the ring on her hand.

From the balcony above: Melissa looks towards denick whispering.

Sharpeye nods, standing. “The recent ‘crisis’ evolved from the actions of the former senators of my world. In short, they conspired with Fagin to gain power, and in so doing ended the lives of many innocent people. As you have no doubt heard, when I recently acquired evidence of Longsnout’s doings, my companions and I confronted him. He is currently in custody along with the other senators, awaiting trial, and the other conspirators are being searched for.”

From the balcony above: Melissa whispers to Denick.

From the balcony above: Snowmist twitches a whisker in annoyance and moves to turn the game back on–only to pause at the sound of Sharpeye’s voice. She leans forward to hook her arms over the back of the seat before her and pricks her ears toward the council chamber.

From the balcony above: Denick shrugs, whispering back.

Dahan nods slightly. “Understood. How has your internal government been effected by these events, and what is its current status?”

From the balcony above: Melissa chuckles.

From the balcony above: Jones arrives from Visitors Level .

Sharpeye nods at the question. “At the request of my people, I have taken the position of imperator pro temp. There is still the worry that there are pockets of those who were in league with Longsnout, and so we are especially vigilant at the moment for strikes of terrorism. It will take a little while to recover from this event and the obvious shock it has caused, but I am confident things can begin to run smoothly once again in a very short time.”

From the balcony above: Melissa is sitting next to Denick watching the proceedings with an almost bored expression.

From the balcony above: Grainer looks up at Jones as she enters, and smiles. He nods a hello, and turns his attention back to the proceedings.

From the balcony above: Snowmist is in an aisle seat near the back of the room, leaning against the seatback in front of her with crossed forearms, attention intent on the council chamber for once.

From the balcony above: Freespirit is watching the proceedings raptly, yellow eyes focused on the council floor.

Dahan tips its wide round head towards the Demarian. “It sounds like you have everything in hand then. Does anyone have anything to say on this matter?”

From the balcony above: Jones walks in quietly and finds a seat.

Avocet shakes his head.

Volnarra remains quiet, still twisting her ring.

Dahan says, “Very well then. Before we end this public session of council, does anyone have new business they wish to bring up? I will assure you that the Nall refugee, the quarantine of certain Ungstiri citizens, and other matters shall be discusses in the private session.”

From the balcony above: Snowmist wrinkles her nose, tail twitching a bit in disappointment.

Avocet nods. “I’d like to brief the Council on the recent happenings on your homeworld.”

Sharpeye takes his seat once again.

Dahan nods slightly. “Of course, General Avocet.”

Avocet stands, glancing toward the balcony. “Would any Vanguard crew involved in the developments on Centauri please report to the Council chambers?”

From the balcony above: Snowmist slumps back into her seat at that, uninterested once again in news she already knew. Flipping her tetris game back on, she almost huddles into her seat, casting a wary glance toward Denick once in a while.

From the balcony above: Marcus arrives from Visitors Level .

From the balcony above: Marcus has arrived.

From the balcony above: Denick stands, he throws a threatening glance at the game, and continues out.

From the balcony above: Blackface rises to his feet and steps out.

From the balcony above: Grainer stands and heads to the door.

From the balcony above: Blackface heads into Visitors Level .

From the balcony above: Grainer heads into Visitors Level .

From the balcony above: Denick heads into Visitors Level .

Blackface arrives from Lounge Area .

From the balcony above: Melissa stays seated watching the others.

From the balcony above: Slipping in from the back is a large male figure who sticks against the wall and slides in as everyone seems to flow out directly after his entrance. “Can I break up a crowd our what..” He mumbles quietly, the person beside him giving him an odd glance.

Blackface steps into the chambers, his cap tucked under his left arm. He moves smartly to attention.

Dahan rises a foot into the air as the soldiers begin to enter the room.

From the balcony above: Snowmist smirks as Denick leaves and straightens a bit, skipping the initial levels to the ones that are more challenging.

Grainer arrives from Lounge Area .

From the balcony above: Jones continues writing things down.

Denick arrives from Lounge Area .

Avocet smiles tightly, regarding the arriving officers. “Mr. President, fellow Council members, one week ago, the crew of the SCS Gettysburg reported to Centauri to deal with the shadowtrappers that were responsible for the deaths or incapacitations of more than a dozen Centauran citizens.” He gestures to the soldiers. “These are several of them. They are to be commended for their valorous actions on behalf of Centauri and the Consortium at large.”

Denick steps in, just behind the other two.

From the balcony above: LeBeau glances at the door as Marcus and Jones both make there way in and to their seats. He looks to each for a brief moment before turning his attention back towards the council meeting

Avocet nods to the Vanguard officers. “Step forward, Recruit Grainer.”

Denick comes to a stop, standing at stiff attention.

Dahan replies, “I remember that incident well, as I was one of the Shaylarians evading the shadowtrappers. If I recall correctly, they were able to remove those things and return them to thier native habitat. I think that some token of our appriation is in order.”

From the balcony above: Marcus’ gaze sweeps towards Lebeau, the odd sensation of being looked at even when you aren’t fully aware of it, present. His only response to the red eyed Lunite is a simple nod as his attention is torn back to the events down below.

Fimkin reaches for his bowl of berries, contemplating what remains and glancing sleepily toward the soldiers.

From the balcony above: Startripper arrives from Visitors Level .

From the balcony above: Snowmist bites her lip in concentration as the blocks rapidly attain the same level of speed that they had been at when Denick untimely turned the game off.

Grainer steps forward as ordered.

From the balcony above: Jones doesn’t appear to note Lebeau’s gaze, too focused.

Dahan moves over by the line of soldiers, and takes a place at Avocet’s side.

Avocet lifts his chin and nods to Grainer. “Recruit, your actions helped free a world gripped in fear. In fact, a week earlier than that, you risked yourself to capture and kill one of the creatures on Citadel Base. For your actions, you receive a Vanguard Medal of Valor, and I convey upon you the rank of Private.” Avocet hands Grainer one of the gleaming medals.

Dahan adds to Avocet’s words, “Thank you for saving the lives of myself, my child, and my people.”

From the balcony above: Cottington claps politely.

Grainer says, “Thank you, sir.” His face a picture of trained calm, though pride haunts behind the cover.

From the balcony above: Jones claps as well, smiling.

Avocet smiles tightly. “Lieutenant Denick, step forward.”

Dahan extends a tentacle towards Grainer, an offer to shake ..well, limbs at least.

From the balcony above: Snowmist is frantically trying to keep up with the game’s pace now as the levels rise. In her anxiety, she begins to lean her body in the direction that she wants the blocks to go, looking rather bizarre with her sudden jerks left and right and muted groans and whimpers as the blocks don’t fall where she wants them to.

Denick takes two steps forwards, and stands, waiting, keeping his back strait and eyes ahead.

From the balcony above: Marcus merely offers a polite nod to his fellow soldiers as they each, one by one, accept their awards.

From the balcony above: Startripper whispers to Snowmist.

From the balcony above: Snowmist ignores Startripper as she focuses on the game, nearing the top score.

From the balcony above: Melissa smiles slighlty as they recieve their award.

Denick glances momentarily upwards again, at Snowmist’s antics.

From the balcony above: LeBeau glances over to Mist who is sitting across the aisle from him and he leans over to her and speaks in a lowered voice “Hey Mist yu may wan a calm down a bid, id es jus a game an moving yer body es no gonna help id any.”

Avocet says, “Lieutenant, you helped lead the effort to capture the shadowtrappers and return them to their rightful place on Castor, in defense of the Centauran people and the Consortium at large. For this, I award you the Vanguard Medal of Valor, and convey upon you the rank of Captain.”

Marda watches intently, one quiet gaze rests on Grainer as it moves about.

Denick nods, and smiles, “Thank you, sir,” as he accepts the medal.

Grainer reaches his hand to shake Dahan’s extended tentacle. He steps back after politely shaking the Presidents tentacle.

Dahan places a tentacle lightly on Denick’s shoulder for a moment, and says, “Good work, Lieutenant.”

Avocet nods. “Lt. Colonel Sandwalker, step forward.”

Denick nods, “Thank you, sir, and give my thanks to rehabilitator Soloth.”

Denick steps back again, as the Lt. Colonel steps forwards.

Blackface takes a few crisp steps forward to Avocet, returning to his position of attention.

From the balcony above: Snowmist twitches a whisker at LeBeau’s advisement and she does calm a bit, though soon enough, she’s once again enthralled in the game.

Dahan bobbles in acknowledgement of Denick’s words, but soon focuses on Blackface.

From the balcony above: LeBeau chuckles to himself as Mist is just to involved in her game and he straightens back in his seat and returns to watching the medal ceremony

From the balcony above: Startripper says quietly, “She should try the pong version we have on the ships…

Avocet studies the Demarian for a moment, then says, “You know, Lt. Col. Sandwalker, less than a year ago, I was gunning to have you drummed out of the Vanguard. If I had succeeded, who knows where Centauri would be today? I am pleased to have failed that battle. You’ve proven to be an incredible asset to this military organization.” He lifts his chin. “Lt. Col. Sandwalker, for your efforts on behalf of Centauri and the Consortium at large, it is my honor to bestow upon you the Vanguard Medal of Valor, and convey upon you the rank of Brigadier General. It should be noted that your rank before court martial was full colonel – and thus, the skip from Lt. Colonel to Brigadier General. Congratulations and thank you, General Sandwalker.”

From the balcony above: Startripper raises his eyebrows, never haveing seen a Demarian Vanguard general before.

Dahan extends a tentacle towards Blackface in an offer to shake. “Congratulations, General, and thank you old friend.”

From the balcony above: Snowmist hunches her shoulders, huddling over the gaming module as she’s just about to break the top score…

An ever-so-slight grin crosses the Demarian colonel’s muzzle as he says, “Thank you, sir.” He turns and shakes Dahan’s tentacle gently, for fear of damaging the Centauran in some way.

From the balcony above: Marcus looks towards the new brigadier general, this announcement having been one of the few to really force him to pay attention. His eyes squint up a tad as he shakes his head grimly, neither in agreement or disagreement, though a shake nonetheless.

From the balcony above: There is a light *click* from the gaming module and the screen abruptly winks out.

Dahan lifts its tentacle, and does something very rare for a Centauran. It salutes the soldiers.

From the balcony above: Snowmist stares at the blank screen as her mouth drops open in shock.

Marda watches the tentacles of Dahan reach out to the various honorees.

Denick smirks slightly.

Blackface steps back into formation and returns the salute with extreme precision.

From the balcony above: Startripper tries to not notice Snowmist about to scream in agony, but braces involuntarily anyway.

Volnarra’s aura shifts to blue as the soldiers receive their medals and new commissions. She nods in approval.

Avocet says, “One thing further, Mr. President…”

From the balcony above: Snowmist slowly looks up as her expression contorts between shock and fury. Gritting her teeth as she spies Denick’s smirk, she moves in her seat, pulling her arm back with the game as if she’s about to throw the module at the lieutenant–captain, now–heedless of the distance and impropriety.

Dahan nods slightly towards Avocet, pausing to listen.

From the balcony above: Startripper casually takes the game unit from Snowmist’s prepped arm

Avocet smiles faintly. “Three other members of the strike team also will receive recognition: Captain Sondrix, Lt. Westlake and Corporal Starr were also critical to this mission. They will receive Vanguard Medals of Valor. Starr will be promoted to Specialist. Sondrix will be promoted to Major. Westlake will be promoted as well.”

From the balcony above: Startripper keeps his eyes on the ceremony as he passes it away from her, to however is sitting next to him in the other direction

Dahan bobbles in acknowledgement, “Of course, General. I’ll send them my regards as well.”

Avocet nods to the soldiers assembled. “Dismissed.” Then he takes his seat.

From the balcony above: Snowmist immediately turns on Startripper with a snap of teeth, futilely reaching for the game which is now far down the row. Slumping back in her seat, she sulks for a few moments before she mumbles to herself, “What, just a game, right?” and slumps a little more.

Dahan waits to watch the soldiers turn and start to leave, before resuming its place at the table.

From the balcony above: Freespirit eh?s as the small game console is thrust upon him. He glances down the row.

Blackface holds his position of attention a moment longer, then turns sharply on his heel and proceeds out.

From the balcony above: Startripper says quietly to Snowmist, “If you like, you can throw the games on the ship at whomever you like, so if you can pick up a ship, go for it. Not now, however.”

Denick nods, and turns, walking out with the others.

Blackface heads into Lounge Area .

Grainer turns and leaves with the others.

From the balcony above: Snowmist twitches her shoulders, straightening a little and looking about with narrowed eyes. She absently mumbles to Startripper, “What?” as she peers up, looking for ventilation grilles.

From the balcony above: Blackface arrives from Visitors Level .

Grainer heads into Lounge Area .

Denick heads into Lounge Area .

From the balcony above: Blackface steps back into the balcony and resumes his previous seat.

From the balcony above: Startripper says, “Forget it. Just think happy thoughts.”

From the balcony above: Denick arrives from Visitors Level .

From the balcony above: Grainer arrives from Visitors Level .

Dahan says, “I’m afraid it’s growing late. If there is nothing more to be discussed, we shall recess until seven p.m. tomorrow evening.”

From the balcony above: Denick steps in, he smiles at ‘mist as he passes, and retakes his seat.

From the balcony above: Startripper places a hand on Mist’s shoulder in order to clam her from jumping at Denick.

Dahan waits a moment, before saying, “Again, tomorrow’s session shall be closed to the public…” It quiets down as it hears something.

From the balcony above: Snowmist scowls at Denick as she’s brought out of her preoccupation, shrugging off Startripper’s hand. “I can control myself,” she growls unconvincingly, eyes intent on the new-made captain.

From the balcony above: Startripper says, “I know, but it’s nice to have a friend around to bolster that control.”

Dahan shakes its head slightly, as if shaking off some fatigue. “This meeting is now officially in recess.”

By Brody

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