Oversight Committee

The room was dark, the only source of light the soft glow of a row of computer monitors around the semi-circular table. A dozen men in dark suits sat around the table silently watching the displays. The haze washed images coming through from deep space were on a long delay. A much longer delay when one considers the six years it took to get to this day in the first place.

With a barely perceptible grimace I turn back to the display, watching the stasis pods opening one by one on the far distant space ship. First the seals break, steam and other gases spilling from the interior and the broken pressure cables that temporarily obscures the view through the cameras. As the gases clear my grimace deepens into a marked frown, one of the pods is already empty, the occupant gone. Damn that blasted vampire, monstrosities all but… necessary. Sarasti was of course already out of his pod and out of sight, it shouldn’t have surprised him, as a full-blooded vampire he had advantages over his fellow crew. I cycle through the other camera feeds, one by one, but cant locate the vampire. I’m not sure if he is just that good at hiding, or if the ship’s “Captain” was helping him. I returned my monitor’s view back to the rest of the crew as they slowly regained some semblance of life. Siri in particular drew my attention, the so called “commissar.” We could expect his first report relatively soon I knew, I would be interested to see what he had to say about the rest of the crew. A slow smile crept across my face as I thought about the half brained freak, it wouldn’t take him, or the others long to figure out that they hadn’t been told everything.

He watched as the grossly emaciated and shriveled cadavers returned to something resembling life. None of them could move very well, only Bates was actually mobile and even she was pathetically unable to catch a ball bounced off the wall. It was galling to think they had to rely on these aberrant creatures.

“They don’t look like much,” said the man at chair 4.

“No they don’t, but we must rely on them nonetheless,” I replied.

“After all the money, time and resources we have soaked into this project they better be worth it,” grumbled the suit in chair 9.

“There’s little we can do about it now, the Captain and Sarasti have their orders, they will carry them out,” said chair 7.

“Can we be sure of that?” asked chair 11.

“Of course we can’t, but we’ve done all we can to ensure their success,” said chair 2.

“In the end though there are too many variables to account for, we have no idea what kind of opposition they will find,” said chair 1. “If the worst happens though Sarasti is a killer, born and bred, he’ll manage and the others… they are ultimately disposable.”

The conversation continued along those lines for a while, but I just kept watching the screen as Siri and the rest of the crew stumbled to life.

——————————————–

I chose to rewrite the first scene of Theseus because I felt it sets the stage for the rest of the story, and I chose to do it from the perspective of the enigmatic “suits” controlling the mission from back on earth. They’re characters who are integral to the plot in many ways, what is happening and why, but are never really seen or heard. I wanted to try and give them a voice and an attitude, to illustrate their mindset and their thoughts on the mission to provide a counterpoint and explanation to back the rest of the story that’s from Siri’s perspective. For instance, Sarasti getting up and about so much faster than the rest of the crew, I wanted to show that from the perspective of the watchers and their disgruntlement and bemusement on the subject. I also wanted to show the suits attitude towards the crew even as the crew expressed their attitude towards their situations and those who put them there. I made special note to have them comment on the change of plans the crew were finding themselves in and how long it took to get them there. I also had them note the inability of Bates to even catch a ball as she tried to exercise life back into her limbs and the appearance of the rest of the crew. All told I wanted to show the scene, or at least a part of it, from the perspective of those orchestrating things behind the scenes.

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