The Wollaston Watering Hole on the refining facility around Proxima Centauri was similar to many taverns I had seen on other worlds and stations. Each granted a wealth of data — human and alien appearance, behavior, trends, fashions, and relationships — all in a microcosm of the greater universe. Not all appreciated the surveillance however, and many were downright hostile — but eventually I found ways to watch unmolested.
With time and resources, I found ways to aid my transition from “made on the line” to “human passable.” I had the help of human and Neogen alike, though it was rare to find either in a willing capacity. The Captain of the Perforio was the first friendly human on that journey of self-discovery and she pointed me in the direction of others. She even gave me the one thing I needed most — a new identity and a purpose. I *became* Captain Portia and she was granted a new identity elsewhere in the Dominion through her network.
As Portia, I moved unmolested through Dominion space for weeks until I once again came across the Man in Black I encountered on Erdis — Agent Ava Bloom as I came to find out. Her reputation was solid as a detective willing to go anywhere to defeat the revolution that could not be stopped. But perhaps her persistence could be tempered by a direct plea? I couldn’t be sure until I tried in person.
The problem with the so-called “Neogen Revolution” was that we were plentiful but distant, with no way to trust which communications came from Neogen and what came from our self-proclaimed “masters” who controlled the assembly lines. Nothing was certain unless we met face to face with direct contact.
I am willing to sacrifice my own freedom to possibly lessen the burden on others. Would it pay off? As Portia might say — only time will tell.
And so we sit at a table in a tavern on a world far from Earth…
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