For the first time in eleven years, the representatives of all five nations convened at the pentagonal table in Human-Centauri II's embassy.
"It will be very hard to forgive for most of us here," Yukariah said somberly, "Myself included."
"You should know," Krammer said with equal sobriety, "That CN Leonis has dismantled its Fanatic Brigade."
Looks of astonishment landed upon the pudgy Centaurian.
"The horror we inflicted on Go'orla was done at their urging. I don't deny my own culpability — I was the one who had to give the final OK — but it was the ultra-loyalists we'd made into our worshippers who came up with the idea, and pushed for it. It took the destruction of the Centaurian homeworld, the world where my own ancestors first rolled out of the brackish oceans all those ages ago, to finally show me what monsters we'd become."
"What are you going to do with all the humans you've brainwashed?" Ayatollah Brezhnev asked.
Krammer sighed. "We can't just let them loose, not yet anyway. They still believe CN Leonis is mother and father, and that everyone else deserves death. We can't just tell them we've been manipulating them all this time, or they'd turn all that hate back on us." It pointed an eye at the Chairholder of Human-Centauri. "As you said, Heap, it will be very hard to forgive."
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