“Ever known a ship to have hours’ worth of logs missing?” She asked Claudio.
“Thank you.” She turned her attention back to the controller. “Access, last viewable log entry in record.”
The lighting dimmed before an image of the battlecruiser’s exterior appeared in the air before them. A part of Talia’s mind sounded an alarm and her spacer instincts kicked in while the log continued to run. There would be no reason to show the exterior of the ship unless…
Dear Cheikra don’t let me be right! She thought.
A pair of crewmembers was expelled from the airlock and floated a short distance away before their bodies exploded. Moments later several more were jettisoned and the warrior prayed silently for the humans.
Is this what we created? She thought.
The projection changed to show one of the interior of the ship. It was a horrible sight, something that completely transfixed Talia, as the atrocities continued. Whole groups of crewmembers, many begging and crying, were herded into the airlock before being ejected. One young nurse tried to run only to have her captor slam the stock of a rifle against her head before shoving the girl into the airlock.
But that alone wasn’t the item that caused Talia to stare at the image. Men and women, some in civilian clothes and others in the uniform of both Fleet and Bavarian Space Forces, stood to the side and watched everything. The warrior couldn’t believe what she was seeing, that a species could be so cruel as to space its own people.
Her voice shook. “I’ve seen enough.”
“My God…” Claudio breathed. “Fleet Officers were behind this.”
“And you wonder why we think you’re nothing but fucking children!” She grabbed the Admiral by the front of his suit and lifted him off the ground. “How many more! How many more will you fucking dumb asses murder before you grow up?”
She started to shake him harder with each word. “I don’t fucking care what you think! Look at it! Look at it! Hundreds spaced!”
Methos grabbed Talia’s arm and her tone was colder than ice. “Put him down, Talia. Now.”
“They’ll just kill more!”
“And you need to get yourself under control and let the past go!”
“Fine!” Talia stalked several feet away before stopping with her back turned. “But don’t say I didn’t warn you!”
“And this won’t bring him back either!” Methos fired back.
“Access data on second ship,” Talia said.
“File unavailable,” it said.
“I want all pertinent data on The General.”
“No records exist.”
Whoever they are, she thought, they certainly don’t leave anything to chance.
“New inquiry: did a second ship leave this system within twelve hours?”
“Course and destination.”
“Tatical, a ship left this system within twelve hours. I want you to find its engine trail.”
“It’ll be very difficult with the radiation levels we’re experiencing,” Terri said.
“I don’t care how hard it is. Find me that ship!”
“New directive,” she said. “Download all files to the Valiant’s main computer.”
“Talia,” Sherri said. “We have a trail on a course bearing one seven five mark nine.”
“Claudio,” Talia said. “Are there any inhabited planets on that heading?”
“Only an uninhabited system fifteen light years from here. Nothing there but gas giants,” Claudio said.
“A perfect place for a rendezvous don’t you think?” “Download complete,” the controller said.
“Execute new command: system shutdown.”
“Execute,” She turned away from the machine. “We’re done here.”
If there was one thing Talia learned how to deal with over the years was when people didn’t like her decisions. The stares, and the thoughts behind them, meant nothing to her because most of the time the person making them wasn’t in a position to make the call.
“I want to head of whoever did this,” Talia growled as she strode past Methos.
Crios was waiting for them at the airlock and her facial expression was grim.
“Worse up there?” Crios asked.
“I’ll tell you when we get back,” Talia said.
Methos slashed her thumb across her throat as she walked past.
Talia never turned around. “I saw that. Bridge, when we’re a safe distance, destroy this fucker.”