Part 36 – A Loss

The formal diplomatic contact with Olyesti happened today. Things... did not go as planned. Granted, they usually don't, but today raised a number of concerns. Let me start at the beginning and describe the day.

Oolon and Terry are off on some mission to one of the lesser race's city-states that I'm sure will cause nothing but petty political intrigue... which means the visit to Olyesti was just Solis and I. Actually, this was to be a welcome respite. Solis and I hadn't traveled together in a long time, I was looking forward to her being able to flex some Inner Council muscle while I got to look important.

We arrived in Olyesti without incident. The modifications to the SASTAP navigation systems allowed a smooth materialization inside the three minute time loop barrier. These modifications should be easy to remotely transmit to the New Gallifrey TTC fleet, and make travel to Olyesti routine. Upon our arrival, we were greeted by Governor Judy and Controller Ar. I had heard that the three minute cities require a Controller to oversee the temporal loop shell – it was interesting to meet Ar.

The two took us to Lady Judy's private meeting room where we proceeded to talk diplomacy. I noted during our stroll to the Capital building that Olyesti was looking much better since my last visit. The infrastructure was almost entirely repaired, and it was looking rather grand. The interior of the Capital still showed minor battle scarring, but I suspect that was left there for our benefit, as a reminder of what the city had been through.

We emerged from the meeting with a plan to present to the New Gallifrey High Council. Olyesti is to be granted a unique seat on the Council, with Governor Judy being a voting member. Citizens of Olyesti may choose to join New Gallifrey Chapters and Houses. They must declare upon entry into a House who will be representing them on the Council – their Governor or their Cardinal. They will then lose voting rights in the other group.

After the conclusion of official diplomatic business, Controller Ar invited Solis and I to the Olyesti space station. We were escorted by Captain A1, the head of their Guard. Opon arriving at the station, we met Lord Zarrin, who is an able Patrexe in charge of the design and construction of the station. We discussed the possibility of converting the station into a sort of Time Station/Carrier able to transport fleets of conventional weapons through the vortex. This is something I will raise as a possibility with the Council. Assuming the Station is still there...

Next I heard the sound of some sort of Vortex Manipulator. Before I knew it, a Dalek soldier, an orbital special weapons Dalek, and a mobile human battle computer had transported to the flight deck of the station. Immediately, they came for Governor Judy and myself. Captain A1 and Solis stepped directly into the line of fire... and Solis was hit.

Immediately, she dropped like a stone to the floor and began regenerating. At that moment, I wasn't thinking of the fact that we were going to lose the vampire DNA in her system (she was supposed to undergo a controlled regeneration inside the SASTAP), only that another shot during her regeneration would surely kill her.

I turned to the Dalek soldier and unleashed the full fury of physic energy Phaon had taught me to channel. Pure energy directly from the SASTAP's Eye. I felt the life force drain from my body, but drew further strength from seeing the Dalek that had taken Solis tossed against the station's dome like a rag doll. I knew that I didn't have another blast in me, but Zarrin and the guards had cleared enough of a path through the firestorm of Dalek rays to allow me to stagger to my feet and call to the SASTAP to materialize in the line of fire. The antiquated Type 30 shell took the beating admirably as I stumbled into the SASTAP, Ar and Judy dragging a barely standing Solis into the console room. Zarrin and the Guard Captain stayed behind – I hope they are ok.

Immediately after dematerializing we drug a still glowing Solis to the SASTAP zero room. She quickly stabilized and seems to be well on the road to recovery in her new, quite vibrant incarnation. I turned to the Governor and Controller and unloaded on them in a fury of anger and accusations. This was a calculated move – my fury distracted them for a moment from the fact that the SASTAP computers were able to utilize the Zero Room to reach inside their minds without them knowing it.

I couldn't probe too deeply, but the Governor harbored genuine feelings of surprise and fear over the attack. Now the Controller... that's another story. His mind is deeply shielded, which is not surprising given the telepathic interface he works with on a daily basis. However, Governor Judy harbors feelings of deep suspicion towards him.

Obviously Olyesti has a leak. Possibly a collaborator. While Solis recovers, I must decide how to inform the Council of events, and still convince them that we need Olyesti, even if their security is in question.

For my part, I fear the events of today have taken the last out of this incarnation. I foresee a controlled regeneration in my very near future.

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