The Uneasy Alliance – Part 7

The Uneasy Alliance

by AJ Marks

Part 7

The Oracle looked over at Seraph waiting for his answer to her question to the Architect.

“He only said yes,” Seraph said relaying the message to her.

“Nothing else?” the Oracle asked watching as Seraph nodded no. She felt disappointed and slightly unsure about a few things now.  She looked at Seraph and then over at Niobe before continuing.  “Things became much more complex than they were before” the Oracle said giving some thoughts to what was happening.

“What do you need us to do?” Niobe asked speaking up and trying to assess the situation in front of them.

The Oracle thought about that for several seconds giving serious thought about what they could do. The situation on the outside had not changed at all, they still needed human help.

“If you can gather a group of volunteer and head to the surface, once there you will be met by a machine called Deux Ex Machina, it will lead you the rest of the way,” the Oracle said, watching Niobe nod at the information.

Oracle turned to Seraph who was also waiting for instructions. She knew that he understood something was going on as well and as much as disliked her next order it had to be done.

“Go to him, we will need his help this time,” she said to Seraph seeing the confused look on Niobe’s face.

“Are you sure?” Seraph asked, he wanted conformation on the instructions.

“Yes, I want to talk to him, though he probably already knows despite the fact I promised to not disturb him. He will probably ask what is going on, tell him what you know,” the Oracle said watching Seraph bow then left the room leaving her and Niobe alone in the room.

“What’s going on?” Niobe asked.

“I wish I knew Niobe,” the Oracle replied. “We’re facing an enemy we don’t understand, or know.  Last time we knew the enemy, they were our creators, this time, everything is confusing.”

“Then I should probably get going then, we don’t know if time is also critical,” Niobe said, something the Oracle hadn’t considered much either.

“It might be, Deux Ex has already begun the process, he’ll explain more when you reach the surface. I feel things are worsening outside the Matrix,” the Oracle said watching Niobe flipping open her phone.

“Link, I need the nearest exit,” Niobe said, listening to the instructions. “Got it,” she said, flipping the phone closed again and looked back at the Oracle.  “I don’t know what’s going to happen, but I hope I get to see you again.”

“Me too child,” the Oracle replied, watching as Niobe headed out of the kitchen. The Oracle could feel something inside the Matrix which shouldn’t be here.  She had hoped she was wrong but he Architect conformed her suspicions.  What surprised her was his inability to do anything about it.


It continued to look around, seeing humans all over the strange place. It saw humans everywhere.  It could feel something strange was happening and continued to watch seeing one human who appeared odd to it.

Deciding to follow it trailed the human female to see if she indeed had some sort of secret that the others did not have. She continued to walk towards a ringing phone and went over and picked it up and disappeared.

That shocked it, something had happened it had not expected inside this machine. It still had a lot to learn about this place, and once it had learned all about it then it could destroy the humans here.


Niobe sat up quickly in the chair after disconnecting from the Matrix. Her disconnect had been very different this time, she saw a strange face in her mind who appeared to have been watching her.  Dismissing the thought she figured it was this Deux Ex Machina who had been watching this time to check on what was going on.

Link was right there asking questions about what happened, what the Oracle said. Niobe understood there were things she had to do and people to organize and waited until Link took a breath.

“I need to talk to General Turner first,” Niobe said, standing up and leaving the ship. It took Link only a few seconds before he caught up with her.  It was only a few seconds before Niobe found Turner.

“What’s the verdict,” Turner asked as Link caught up with her and listened in on the conversation.

“The Oracle asked for volunteers to head to the surface to help out. Once there they would meet up with a machine called Deux Ex Machina, or something like that,” Niobe replied to them.

“Some volunteers,” Turner replied, rubbing his chin giving the request some thought. “The Council won’t like this, but I think we can manage a few without them getting suspicious, at least not yet.  We won’t be able to hide it forever.”

Niobe nodded, thinking the same thing. Any large numbers would be noticed by others, and the Council would become suspicious of any activity.

“I think we need to move quickly, the Oracle stated time was important,” she said.

Turner thought about what Niobe said, and an idea formed in his mind. They could spare a few people, from the right areas, especially if he controlled those areas, he could shield what was going on from the council a bit longer, or until more proof could be provided.  He walked out of the Hammer along with Niobe and Link and headed towards the cells to inform Morpheus what was going on.

“I’ll meet you back at the cell, I want to talk to someone first,” Turner said looking over at Niobe and Link, who merely nodded and took off as Turner changed course. “Ben, can I have a word with you?” Turner asked, approaching the man.

“Sir, what can I do for you?” Ben asked as Turner made his way closer.

“Relax,” Turner said, placing a hand on his shoulder. Ben had shown time and again his abilities during the war against the machines, and even managed to survive the battle in Zion, a remarkable feat few managed and knew he could handle any mission or situation which might come up.  “I need you for a mission, but you can refuse if you want, just don’t’ tell anyone, it must be kept a secret.”

“What’s the mission,” Ben asked, and Turner could hear the curiosity in the man’s voice.

“Not here,” Turner said, looking around at all the people. All it took was one person blabbing to the council and it was all over.  “Come with me.”

Ben followed as Turner made his way to his office, where he could ensure a more private conversation. His office was actually quite sparse, only a few things on the desk and a couple of potted flowers which were in bloom giving the room a different smell compared to other areas.  He looked over seeing Ben looking at the flowers.

“My pride and joy, it adds a different smell than the recycled air the machines give us,” Turner said. “In fact they’ve only blossomed today.  There used to be entire fields of flowers, perhaps someday there will be again.”

He gave a brief thought about how that might look, and smell before remembering he brought Ben here for something else.

“I regress, let’s talk about your mission,” Turner said, watching Ben’s focus return to him. “Niobe talked with the Oracle lately, as has Morpheus.  I’m sure you’ve seen the machine they came back with?”

“Yes sir,” Ben said.

“Good, we want to send a group of volunteers to head to the surface,” Turner said.

“The surface?”

“Yes, I don’t know all the details, and it could be a trap by the machines, but I’ve learned to trust Morpheus over the years. I’d like you to be in such a mission, if you want,” Turner said.

”Okay, I’m in,” Ben said.

“Head to the cell where Morpheus is, only say you’re in as well, tell them I’m working to get some others involved, a small team, and,” he paused thinking, “a plan which might be able to spring Morpheus.”

“All right,” Ben said, heading off.

Turner only hoped the plan worked, and it might, just might, shake up the council enough to push them into action.


Apollo and Starbuck walked into the lounge to relax before their next patrol. They glanced around until Starbuck noticed Cassiopeia talking with Athena, and with a bit of hesitation Starbuck headed over with Apollo behind him wondering how all this was going to play out.  His current girlfriend talking with his ex.  Even as Apollo watched Bojay approached and whispered something in Athena’s ear causing her to giggle.

Apollo sat down, with Starbuck behind him seeing the others.

“Hope you don’t mind us joining you,” Apollo said across from Athena.

“Not at all Apollo,” Bojay said sitting down next to Athena. It caused Apollo to consider the two, had Athena moved on from Starbuck?  Despite Athena being his sister and Starbuck his best friend, he had the feeling the two would never have been good, mixing like oil and water.

“Hey handsome,” Cassiopeia said as Starbuck sat down next to her.

Now Apollo had a feeling he was out of place with two couples already. He briefly wished Sheba was here but she was on duty.  Cassiopeia and Starbuck seemed to be headed in a slow direction and now his sister seemed to be attracted to Bojay.

“So, is it true?” Bojay asked, lowering his voice to ask the question to Apollo.

“What true?” Apollo asked, hoping it wasn’t about a certain rumor. He hoped that rumor would remain shushed and quiet for now.

“A basestar, someone said one was spotted,” Bojay asked very quietly. It appeared the rumor had spread, at least among the pilots that they had spotted a basestar while on patrol.  Apollo glanced over at Starbuck who had a similar look on his face, not wanting to talk about it.  “Never mind,” Bojay finally said after a few seconds of silence.

“It’s just a rumor,” Apollo said to them, despite the fact everyone appeared to not believe him. He knew it was words but the way the basestar acted still weighed on him.  They might not spot another basestar for a long time, and he hoped not to.

“Did you heard the rumor about the vipers getting an upgrade?” Athena finally sad, changing the topic of conversation to something more pleasant.

“Oh yeah. Know a guy who works with Doctor Wilker, and he and a team are going to upgrade the thrusters and weapons on the vipers, even adding new software for the communications so we won’t be jammed so easily,” Bojay said in excitement.

“Didn’t think they could upgrade the vipers any further,” Starbuck said, his own body language indicating excitement.

“It’s amazing what people can do when we have to,” Cassiopeia said to the group.

“Father thinks they also found a way to improve the fuel efficiency of many of the ships in the fleet as well, though they still have to test it,” Athena stated to the group. It was the best news they had heard in a while.

“Adding that will allow us to go further with our existing fuel, so some good news,” Bojay said. “And upgrading our weapons will keep pace with whatever upgrades the Cylons have worked out.”

Mentioning Cylons brought back the somber mood which had been present when Bojay asked about the rumor.

“Hey, why the long faces around here?” another voice said, causing them to see Sheba standing there next to them.

“Hey, thought you were on duty?” Apollo said.

“Just got off,” Sheba replied. “Thought I’d track you down.”

“I’m not hard to find,” Apollo said, knowing there were only a few places one could go on board the battlestar to find privacy. In fact most areas had tells now to indicate if someone was using it to avoid awkward situations.

A squeal from across the room shifted their attention and looking over they spotted Rigel hugging Omega tightly. Confusion reigned for a few seconds until word quickly spread Omega had proposed to Rigel.  Apollo figured Rigel said yes considering her reaction.  He silently wished them better luck than he had with Serena, and some excitement was good for the ship and crew.

He waited until the group of well-wishers died down before heading over himself to congratulate them.

End part 7

Continued in part 8

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