Approx. 1500 words
All Rights Reserved
Copyright 2015 SJ
written by SJ
It was decided that Lana Lyu LaFong be returned to Proxima Altair via Yarrick’s new command ship; it had the fastest jump-drive. After a jump-time of approximately 6.5 days, Lana was briefed and prepared, then led to the space station’s conference room. General Parker and Yarrick were there, plus a vast array of Government Officials, most of who were present virtually.
The General had spoken to her before they went into the room, telling her to relax. Once she seemed ready, it was Galactic Prime Minister, Leona Lebesque, that spoke first, simply telling Lana to recount her visit to the Eldar world, and what she talked about while with the Farseer Counsel.
Lana left out the details of the healing hands, just saying they healed her somehow, and that Ar’sharel was glad it worked on her. She explained meeting Te’lyn, and as much of the conversation with Ar’sharel as she could, trying to explain why Eldar telepathy could never read a Terran’s mind, let alone control someone’s mind.
Eventually, she decided to explain. “They told me I’M telepathic.”
It was obvious everyone in the room was shocked, even those virtually present. There was a delay before Cartel President Melvin Cooper questioned. “If they can’t read our minds, then how did they know you were telepathic?” When Lana didn’t answered right away, he proposed. “They must’ve READ your mind, right?”
Lana frowned. “No. It wasn’t like that. It was...” She had trouble putting it into words.
But, Cooper continued on. “How do we know all of us aren’t unknowingly telepathic? And if we are...that puts us right back to where we started, with the Eldar having a distinct advantage by reading our minds.”
She was starting to get mad. She knew he was wrong. When he started to speak again, Lana interrupted. “So, if you’re saying we’re all telepathic, then why can’t we read their minds? Why can’t we read each others minds?”
He delayed, then countered. “But, we aren’t telepathically trained like them--”
“That’s what I’ve been saying.” Lana argued back forcefully. “If a Terran child, or any child, grows up and no one ever speaks to them in words, they would never be able to use language even once they became an adult. If someone eavesdropped on them talking--what would we hear? It would be gibberish.”
“But, that’s using words.” Leona tried to understand, her tone of voice calm. “Do you know if it’s the same with telepathy?”
It took a second for Lana to find the right video screen. She looked at Leona and spoke honesty. “Yes.”
Leona was taken back, surprised; then she sat waiting for an explanation.
Lana continued. “I was there in the Counsel room. They must’ve been all communicating with each other telepathically.” She thought of a way to explain. “It bothered me. I couldn’t hear, OR UNDERSTAND, anything. But, something was there.”
When no one said anything right away, she went on, her voice becoming emotional. “When they found out I was telepathic, they were sad. Te’lyn ran crying from the room.”
“Why were they sad?” Leona asked.
“Because no one ever spoke to me telepathically. They were sad because my gift was lost.” Lana looked down, sighed, then looked back up again. “They are very sensitive people.” She frowned. “If none of you are...then I don’t think you’re ever going to get along with them.”
Lana waited, not knowing what else to say...
It was Leona who spoke next. “We understand what you’re saying, Lana. And..I like to think we have a sensitive side.”
“I agree.” Melvin spoke up. “Lana, I hear what you’re saying, also. Whether you know it or not, you just told us a lot about them. But, that’s JUST the Alaitoc Farseer Counsel. And, from what I just heard, it might just be those two Counsel members you spoke to: Ar’sharel and Te’lyn.”
After a sigh, Lana nodded, agreeing.
When no one spoke right away, she reiterated. “I just think you shouldn’t be so worried about their telepathic ability; in their society, it’s why they are unable to lie to each other.” She looked at the video screens. “Ar’sharel told me the main reason the Eldar are reluctant to speak with us is because we aren’t telepathic...and because of that, we’d be able to lie to each other without restriction. They, just don’t trust us.”
“I don’t know what we can do about that.” Melvin spoke frankly.
“Ar’sharel told me the finding of a telepathic Terran would shake the Counsels of the other Eldar worlds.” Lana explained. “But, I’m not a diplomat. Maybe, because of me, you guys will be able to talk to them better.”
“That might be so.” Leona agreed. “I hope.”
“We might try contacting the Alaitoc world directly.” Melvin proposed.
When Lana spotted Yarrick, she remembered. “Ar’sharel told me they can communicate with the Tyranids.” She pointed at him. “Yarrick said he thought the Eldar sent the Tyranids to Thanatos--”
“Well, that was just a theory--” He defended.
“But, you were right.”
“But, they didn’t do it deliberately.” Lana explained. “The Eldar can use their telepathy to speak to high level Tyranids, like the Queen. But, they can only speak to them in very simple terms. All they did was to tell them they were not currently interested in going to the Thanatos star system. The Tyranids took it to mean it was okay to go there.” She sighed. “Ar’sharel is very sorry. And she’s very worried about us. She said if we ever start talking to each other, they would speak to the Tyranids on our behalf. She said the Tyranids refer to us as the ‘Silent Ones’. Apparently, they’ve tried to communicate with us--we’re just unable to hear them, or answer.” She looked at the screen with Melvin Cooper. “Which is proof we’re not all unknowingly, telepathic.”
Lana suddenly felt drained as she sat back in her chair and rested.
Melvin spoke up, saying. “Well, I don’t know if it’s proof, but it’s strong evidence. Is there anything else?”
“Give her a little break, guys.” The General spoke diplomatically. “You have to admit, what she’s told us so far is invaluable.”
She faced the General. “Oh, about those Chaos spaceships. You said you were worried about what the Eldar would think if we fought them, about if they attacked the Eldar.”
General Parker was all ears.
“Ar’sharel said that she, AND, all the other Eldar understand. They call them the Dark Terrans.” She smiled. “She said they wouldn’t blame us for what the Dark Terran’s did.”
Parker smiled back. “That’s really good to hear. And this is the opinion of ALL the Eldar?”
“That’s what it seemed like to me.” Lana confirmed. “I mean, they would probably fight back, of course, but, Ar’sharel said they wouldn’t blame us.”
After another short rest, Lana proceeded to talk about the few questions she was asked about government, trade, and family, and how she answered them, afterwards making it clear that she was not asked any questions about the Terran military, and that she was told she would not be asked.
Then she remember another thing. “I told Ar’sharel about the Centaurus worlds we found, about the ruins. She said they know about those worlds. She said we should leave, that it might be dangerous! They called them, haunted.”
“Haunted?” That was Melvin. “Did she tell you what she meant by, haunted?”
Lana sighed. “Ar’sharel said the word, haunted, was the only Terran word she had to describe them. She said THEY never go there, and neither should anyone else.”
“What does she want us to do?” Melvin wanted to know.
Lana shrugged. “She said we should leave, and never go back. Just leave the worlds alone.”
“Saying we should leave just because they are haunted, well, that pretty vague.” Melvin mentioned.
Lana agreed. “I know. I don’t what else to tell you. I mean, if it were up to me, I’d remove any personnel and study the ruins with probes only. But, that’s just me.”
At this point, the meeting began to wind down, at least as far as Lana was concerned. She was eventually, thanked, then allowed to leave.
Afterwards, she wondered if anything she said would make a difference. She hoped so, and hoped Ar’sharel would have better luck when she spoke to the other Eldar Counsels.
Later that day, she asked for a ride back to Camp Cheyenne. Instead, they asked her stay, maybe be part of a diplomatic team that would contact the Alaitoc world. But, she told them, she was not a diplomat. If Ar’sharel asked for her personally, she would be glad to go. Until then, she should stick to being what she was trained to be: a Special Ops Scout Marine. The General agreed and convinced the others, where as she got her request and was returned to Cheyenne.