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Episode 20

Opening Narration

On the night before it happens.

Orth, brown, pocked face, his large stature turned inwards, hidden and unsure on the chaise in the officer's lounge. Tea, a bright spike of golden hair topping a perfectly worn uniform and the weight of the ship on her shoulders. Natalya, round eyes looking over round glasses at the info screen, wondering how much she can let the others know. Sokrates, the second prince, standing firm and sleek and alone on the Apostolosian cruiser. When will they listen? Addax, his plum hair neatly styled, his tan skin taut with purpose. And Peace around him, ever threatening. And Jace, poor Jace, his soft, light face, his compact body drawn even tighter under the stress. A clarity of vision and quiet fear. And Ibex... And Ibex...

Episode Synopsis

Ibex has offered the fleet an ultimatum: he will let the refugees stay on Glimmer, but only if he and Righteousness are allowed to join the task force.

Natalya and Tea do not want Ibex on board, and they come up with a plan to get the refugees onto Glimmer without taking Ibex’s offer. Natalya is secretly a member of the hypertech group, The Rapid Evening, and she says that she can arrange for funds and supplies for the refugees to live on if Tea can arrange for the Gambit to transport them onto Glimmer. They let Orth and Jace in on their plan. Jace dislikes the idea, and inadvertently tells Addax about the plan, not realizing that Tea and Orth wanted to keep it a secret. Addax disapproves.

Orth and Addax are at a stalemate about what to do; meanwhile, Ibex is appearing on television to paint them as the aggressors when Ibex just wants an “open conversation” between the two parties. Orth eventually folds when Sokrates points out to him that neutralizing the Apostolosian weapon is the true objective here and, regardless of what Ibex wants, he will help them do that. Ibex is allowed to board, though not without turning the whole ordeal into a photo-op and press event.

Now at the planet Wreath, the fleet is low on supplies. The ship must decide whether or not to take supplies from Wreath, or face a fleet-wide military strike in retaliation.

Ibex holds a meeting between Addax, Sokrates, and himself. He blames Orth and his leadership for the mess they’re in, and proposes to Addax that they force Orth to step down so that the two of them can take control of the fleet. Meanwhile, Orth has come up with a plan to send a representative down to Wreath to negotiate a reciprocal aid deal for supplies. He tells Tea that he wants Ibex to be the representative, but she warns him of Ibex, and that he will try to manipulate him.

While Addax and Ibex are present, Sokrates reveals to Orth and Jace about the meeting Ibex had to overthrow Orth. Sokrates and Ibex get into an argument over Ibex’s power grabbing; Sokrates tells Ibex that nobody likes him and everyone is afraid of him. They successfully undermine Ibex, turning everyone against him. After Ibex leaves, Addax tells Orth that he should demand respect from Ibex.

Licking his wounds, Ibex attemps to soften his image by making friends with the soldiers at the commissary. Later, Orth approaches Ibex to ask him why he wanted to overthrow him. Ibex says he doesn’t think Orth is a bad leader and, in fact, would make a good one during peacetime; he’s too gentle, like “a very good dog”. He says that Orth wouldn’t have even had to have stepped down, but just would have let a stronger leader than him make the decisions. Orth offers Ibex the chance to be that person, and Ibex agrees. He tells Orth to meet him once a day at the commissary to talk.

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