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"Distant Memories"-Pt. 2

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PostPosted: Fri Aug 25, 2006 7:24 am    Post subject: "Distant Memories"-Pt. 2 Reply with quote

They had arrived at the Caprica City spacedrome, and after Adama had shared a tender moment of reunion with his wife, Cain found himself introduced to Ila. She was a vivaciously attractive blonde woman, the same age as Adama and six inches shorter than his imposing six foot height. Instantly, Cain could see a woman of great dignity and nobility, totally unlike any of the women he was used to spending lonely nights with in various liberty ports throughout the nearby star systems that the Pegasus would occasionally put into, in between assignments. Ila was the kind of woman totally unapproachable from his standpoint.

As Adama had predicted, Ila was all too happy to welcome Cain into their fashionable downtown Caprica City apartment for dinner. When the two warriors arrived, they found that Ila had already seen to it that a sumptuous feast of the finest Colonial delicacies was waiting for them. Ila had anticipated that after more than a yahren of battlestar cuisine, her husband would be prepared to gorge himself, and because of that, there was more than enough to go around despite Cain's unanticipated presence.

For a centar, the two warriors enjoyed rare roasted Caprican meat, garnished with crisply cooked Piscean vegetables and dominated most of the conversation among themselves, trading stories about the battles they'd been through.

Finally, Adama's sense of dignity got the better of him and he cast an embarrassed glance at his wife, "Ila, I'm sorry. This must be boring you stiff."

"Not at all," his wife had her hands folded under her chin and smiled, "It's a lot more fascinating than how the battles get reported on the BNC."

"Your husband's right," Cain said, noting once again that such a thought about lack of sensitivity never would have occurred to him first, "I haven't learned enough about what you do, Ila. Adama tells me that you're involved in the arts?"

"Yes," Ila nodded and relaxed back in her chair, as she wondered how long she could possibly hold the attention of a man like Cain on a subject like this, "Professor of Drama and Music at the Caprican Fine Arts Institute. I try to give encouragement to aspiring composers and playwrights."

"Drama *and* Music?" Cain raised an eyebrow, "Sounds like you have to be exceptional to specialize in both fields."

"Oh, not really," she said disarmingly, "If a warrior can be both a pilot and a command tactician, some of us can also develop an expertise in both Drama and Music. The two fields are more closely related than most people think."

"I see. Do you just teach, or have you done any writing yourself?"

"A little, but nothing significant. I've had one play of my own performed in those little regional theaters during the warm season, but nothing good enough to get the attention of a high-level backer like Sire Uri."

"Uri?" Cain rubbed his chin, "Isn't he the one who financed all the art galleries and theaters that have opened in the last ten yahrens?"

"The same," Ila nodded, "You know him?"

"Only the name," Cain admitted, "Not that I'm a great patron of the arts, but it's difficult to walk through downtwon Caprica Center without seeing his name plastered over all the buildings in the entertainment district. Always struck me as a bit egocentric for someone who doesn't do any performing, composing or writing himself."

"Possibly," Ila nodded, "He's waged a pretty successful campaign with the press to get all the credit for the so-called Caprican Renaissance that they say we're going through now. And to be fair, he has done a lot with his philanthropy, but some of his projects leave a lot to be desired. Like the play I have to go to tomorrow night."

"Let me guess," Adama said, "A personal project of some protege of his, and starring a young woman of limited acting ability, whom Uri admires for reasons other than her lack of performing skills."

"You're so close to being perfect," his wife said, "This is the comeback attempt of a fallen star in Caprican playwriting circles. Galen. Had some major successes twenty yahrens ago, but that was during the pre-Renaissance period when there were no other playwrights comparable to the level of talent we have today. Uri decided to give him a try, but only because Galen is so desperate for another crack at the big-time that he accepted the one condition that no other playwright would ever agree to."

"Something tells me this is where the young woman comes in," her husband smiled wryly.

"Indubitably. Uri's has a young protege if you will, by the name of Danela. A very famous face when it comes to advertisments in vidcom programming, but someone who has yet to do legitimate acting of any kind. He's been wanting to have a playwright find a leading part for her, and Galen is so desperate for Uri's underwriting, that he agreed."

Adama shook his head, "And Siress Uri had no say in the matter?"

"The Uri marriage became one of formal convenience some time ago. They'll never have their seals dissolved, because his wife loves the prestige of the Uri name, which helps her in social circles. But the two of them never spend any time with each other anymore."

"I'm confused," Cain said, "How is it that Uri's wife has the same name?"

"Uri's wife is of Leonine background. In their tradition, the wife adopts the name of her husband if she is granted a formal title of Siress."

"I see," Cain nodded, "Getting back to the play, why do you have to go see it?"

Ila smiled, "Professional survival. Uri also is the Institute's leading benefactor, and those of us who have not yet received tenure in our teaching positions can ill-afford rubbing him the wrong way. He carries too much clout with the Headmaster."

"Kind of like some battlestar commanders I know," Cain shot a wry glance at Adama, who smiled back in understanding at his friend's reference to Commander Kronus.

"The only thing I feel bad about, is what might happen to a good friend of mine," Ila went on, "This is a play where two women have the leading parts. One for Danela, and the other for my friend. It's her first real break, and she earned it. But if this play is destined to be the critical flop that I'm sure it will be, it could ruin her career before it has a chance to get started."

"Your old primary-school chum, Bethany?" Adama smiled.

"Yes," Ila sighed with regret, "My old partner from primary-school pageants. Working next to her convinced me that any future I had in the arts had to be behind the scenes. For five yahrens, she's been working in those second-rate regional theaters and this is the first Caprica City production she's been in."

"If the critics are as intelligent as they presume to be," Adama said, "the shortcomings in the play won't blind them to her brilliance. If she's as good as she's been in all the other performances I've seen her in, they'll notice it."

"I hope so," Ila sighed, "I hope so."

"You seem more nervous about it than she must be," her husband said, "I'll go with you tomorrow to give you some moral support."

"Thanks," his wife said with gratitude and then looked at Cain, "You're welcome to join us too, Cain, but I'm sure you've got other plans."

"Actually I don't," the brown-haired lieutenant said, "And as anxious as I am to see the Commandant about using the Academy War Games Simulator, your kind hospitality tonight with this magnificent dinner makes it impossible for me to refuse your invitation."

"It'll be a formal affair," Ila said, somewhat surprised, "All warriors have to wear dress uniforms."

"My favorite kind," Cain settled back in his chair and smiled, "It'll give me a chance to show off all my decorations to the public for the first time."


True to his word, Cain showed up at Adama's apartment the next night, looking resplendent in the tan dress uniform and matching cape. Even though Adama was wearing an identical dress uniform, the black-haired lieutenant knew right away that his friend cut a more dashing figure, especially with the three levels of campaign ribbons across the left side of his chest and the four distinguished service medals and ribbons neatly aligned in the row above. By contrast, Adama had only one row of ribbons on his uniform, and one distinguished service ribbon.

Right away, Adama found himself thinking back to his Academy days with Cain, and how his friend's evenings invariably ended in one of two ways. Either hunched over the War Games Simulator scoring a major victory, or on the arm of a young woman. He suspected that his friend was half-hoping for the latter result to happen on this occasion, especially since the entertainment district was often a haven for the kind of woman Cain had little trouble conquering.

As they rode in their hired skylimousine to the opulent edifice that housed the Caprican National Theater, Adama found his suspicions confirmed when Cain leaned forward in his seat and said, "By the way Adama, when this thing is over, I'll take an airtaxi myself back to my apartment. I plan on stopping by some old Academy haunts of mine that aren't too far from the theater."

"I know what you mean," Adama smiled thinly, as he mentally recited the names of all the bars and chanceries that comprised the so-called Red Light section of the Entertainment District that he'd always known Cain to frequent during their student days. For Cain, such places were the kind of havens a warrior needed to frequent to let off steam for brief periods of respite during a combat tour. For Adama, such places were seedbeds of conduct he personally considered immoral, but that was something he never tried to press strongly on Cain. He knew that Cain was a man with few religious instincts, and not likely to be swayed by any kind of preaching.

A small cluster of reporters representing the society sections of Caprican news journals and video-com networks were already gathered outside the theater, waiting to see who would be attending the gala premiere of a play that Sire Uri had been doing much to publicize for some time. As soon as they saw the warrior who had been heavily profiled for the last two yahrens emerge from the hired skylimousine with Adama and Ila, they instantly took notice and began to congregate around him. Cain was more than willing to accommodate them. For the next ten centons, the man who would one day become known simply as the Juggernaut, regaled them with tales of his combat exploits that held their attention so much that when Sire Uri's vehicle arrived ten centons later, they completely ignored the producer's arrival (much to the sire's annoyance and anger).

Adama, Ila and Cain had reserved seats in the front row of the theater, just five feet away from the stage. Cain idly leafed through the program that had been presented to him, trying to get a handle on what he'd be seeing unfold before him.

"Two Sisters," he read the title aloud, "What's it about?"

Ila rolled her eyes, "Charitably, I would call it a second-rate melodrama. It's about two Aquarian sisters, and how one of them, who's beautiful and glamorous and wealthy, manages to seduce the husband of her older, less glamorous sister, and the subsequent ramifications in the lives of both. When I finished reading my advance copy, I knew right away that if it had been presented to me by one of my students, I'd have flunked it in a micron."

"Poor Galen," Adama sighed, "He would have been better off taking remedial classes of yours at the Institute."

"His ego won't allow him. Once a playwright's had his first work done by the National Theater Company, he never wants to look back. But Galen just can't accept the fact that he was a hit only because we were in the midst of a cultural dry-spell at the time."

Cain looked over the cast list, "Your friend Bethany plays the older sister?"

"Naturally," Ila smiled, "You don't think that Uri would have his 'protege' play any part other than the glamorous one, would you?"

"I guess not," Cain chuckled, "I guess not."

The lights then dimmed and the play started. It only took five centons for Cain to realize that Ila's assessment of the play as second-rate melodrama was exactly on the mark. The premise that there would be two sisters in such diametrically opposite lifestyles struck him as silly, and it was also clear the dialogue was clunky beyond belief.

Danela, the 'young protege' of Sire Uri, briefly caught Cain's interest when she made her entrance. Danela was a strikingly attractive blonde girl in her early twenties, whom the lieutenant immediately recognized from advertising displays in various newsjournals and vid-com broadcasts. She had a provocative sexual aura that Cain was familiar with from all the one-night stands he'd enjoyed in the last three yahrens at various liberty ports in the star systems of the Colonial Frontier. There was no question, that Danela was definitely the kind of girl he could have falling at his feet in a micron's time, once he got the chance to turn on his patented charm act, that many a socialator and barmaid had fallen for. Ever since his Academy days, he'd found that the same kind of egocentric braggadocio that served him well as a combat flyer could also have the right effect on the right kind of woman.

Once Danela opened her mouth, and the audience heard a high-pitched squeak emanate, Cain right away knew that she had no talent as an actress. The rest of the audience knew it too, and were soon letting out small bursts of unintentional laughter whenever she spoke some of the play's heavy-handed dialogue. If they'd been able to look up into Sire Uri's private box, they would have instantly seen the producer visibly squirm.

Cain had barely finished assessing Danela, when Ila's friend Bethany made her entrance as the older sister. Cain was half-expecting her to be made-up looking dowdy and frumpy, but he was pleasantly surprised to see a woman who looked attractive from a wholesome, rather than provocative perspective. She had light reddish-brown hair, radiant blue eyes and a face that seemed almost angelic to Cain. As soon as he saw her smile for the first time, that angelic impression was only heightened in his mind, and to his amazement he found his heart skip a beat.

She's different, he said to himself. She's definitely a woman of class.

The unapproachable kind, he then reminded himself, as he settled back in his seat. I couldn't do a thing with someone like her.

But as the play progressed, Cain found his attention on Bethany increasing. He was no drama expert, but he could already tell that she was giving a performance that definitely elevated the material above its subpar quality. She was bringing nobility, dignity and pathos to the part of the older sister that made Cain feel genuine sympathy for her character. And when she delivered a powerful soliloquy, standing alone on the stage, as she recalled the trials of her life and her determination to survive despite the setbacks, Cain found to his amazement that his eyes were tearing up.

For sagan's sake, he thought to himself. This is silly. It's only a damned play.

Maybe so, he reflected further. But she has remarkable talent. I've got to meet her, and let her know that.

He then remembered something Ila had said earlier in the evening about where she and Adama would be going after the play. Something about a reception at the Pyramid Towers Hotel two blocks away, where all the major people involved in the play would be celebrating the premiere night. Sire Uri would be there, and so would the playwright Galen. If Ila was such a good friend of Bethany, then it was inconceivable to think that she wouldn't be there too.

Already, the plans he'd made for himself when he'd set out that evening, were fast becoming forgotten as he continued to watch Bethany's captivating performance unfold before him.

When the play finally ended after two centars that seemed interminable to those who already knew that they had just witnessed a commercial disaster, Cain was pleased to see that the loudest applause from the audience came when Bethany took her curtain call. Along with Ila and Adama, he reserved his only applause for her as well.

As the crowd began to file out toward the exits, Ila gathered her things and let out a sigh of relief, "Thank the Lords of Kobol that's over."

"Cain, thank you for coming," Adama said as he shook his friend's hand, "Get in touch with us whenever it's convenient. You're always welcome in our house."

"What?" Cain frowned slightly in befuddlement as soon as Adama shook his hand, "You're saying goodbye now?"

Adama frowned back, "You said you planned on leaving, after—."

"Oh," he flushed slightly, "Well, I was thinking that maybe it would be rude of me to cut out on the two of you so fast. If I wanted to go along to this reception that's planned, would that be all right?"

"I don't see why it wouldn't," Ila was surprised as she wrapped her elegant silken scarf around the neck of her blue formal gown, "If you want to come, you're most welcome."

"Thank you," Cain sounded relieved, "Thank you, I appreciate that."

"You're welcome, Cain," Adama found it difficult to conceal the surprise he felt. There was something in Cain's tone he'd never heard in his friend before in all the yahrens he'd known him. He couldn't quite put his finger on it, but whatever it was, it was definitely out of character for Cain.


Thirty centons later, they were in the Main Reception Room of the Pyramid Towers Hotel, long regarded as the most elegant in all of Caprica City. Approximately fifty people had shown-up for what was supposed to be a festive, opening night party, but right away, Ila and Adama could sense that the overall mood in the room was anything but festive.

"Good evening, Sire Uri," Ila said brightly as soon as she saw the slouched form of the producer standing off to one side. The sire had the look of a man who had once cut a dashing figure in his younger days, but who was now starting to lose the battles of a war that could only be lost, as evidenced by a receding hairline and a few extra pounds at the waistline. He was holding a full glass of Skorpian bourbon, and his expression was anything but happy.

"Ah yes," Uri said as he sipped his glass, "Professor Ila of the Institute?"

"Correct," Ila nodded, "I don't believe you've met my husband, Lieutenant Adama of the Battlestar Rycon.."

"Sire Uri," Adama politely bowed. The middle-aged sire didn't bother to shake hands, further indicating his downcast mood, "My wife's spoken highly of your efforts on behalf of the arts."

"Well, consider it a civic duty of mine that has its rewards and sometimes its....failures," Uri took another sip of his drink, and it already seemed apparent to Adama and Ila that it would not be the last one the sire would indulge in that night.

Adama decided to change the subject, "Ah Sire Uri, may I present a friend of mine you've probably read about. Lieutenant Cain of the Battlestar Pegasus."

But as soon as Adama turned around to indicate his friend, both he and Ila were surprised to see that Cain was still lingering in the doorway of the Reception Hall entrance, his eyes darting about the whole of the room as though he were trying to find something.

"Cain?" Adama called and motioned his friend to come over, "Could you please come over here for a centon?"

"What?" Cain's head jerked toward them, "Sorry, what was that you said, Adama?"

"I said could you please come over here for a centon?" Adama gently repeated, as he wondered just what was causing his friend to act so odd.

The brown-haired lieutenant quickly shuffled over to where the three people were standing.

"Lieutenant Cain, Sire Uri," Adama said again.

"A pleasure to meet you," there was a rushed quality to Cain's words as he hastily shook hands with the corpulent sire.

"Ah yes," Uri looked him over, "Weren't you the one the reporters were paying such close attention to, outside the theater?"

"I ah, suppose so, sir." Ordinarily, Cain never felt the instinct to be so polite to anyone from the noble class. But on this evening, braggadocio was the furthest instinct from his mind.

"Then I'm glad you're here," a mirthless smile came across the producer's face, "You might be able to deflect them from me again if more of them show up here."

Ila immediately sensed that she needed to get the nobleman's off the subject of the play, and she knew she had to take advantage of the meeting for her own purposes. She immediately took him by the arm and led him away from the two warriors. "Ah, Sire Uri I was wondering if you and I could talk about the proposed contribution for the Institute's building fund for the next yahren..."

"Yes, I was planning on speaking to the Headmaster about that tomorrow, but this would be a much more opportune time to settle those matters...." Uri's mood seemed to brighten as they moved off.

Once his wife and Uri were out of earshot, Adama turned to Cain and gave his friend a thoroughly puzzled look.

"Are you all right?" he gently inquired.

"I'm fine," Cain said hastily, "Perfectly fine."

"You don't....seem like yourself."

"It's nothing," Cain's attempts at reassurance did little to impress his friend, "Nothing at all."

"Okay," Adama kept his tone cautious, "Care for a drink at the bar?"

"I'd love one," Cain said. At the moment, Cain felt his body quivering inside to the point where he felt he could definitely use one.

They made their way over to the other side of the room where a uniformed steward was mixing and serving drinks. Adama took a glass of Caprican white ambrosia, while Cain took a more stiff drink in the form of Sagitarian brandy.

"So," Adama decided to start a new conversation, "Did you think the play was as bad as everyone else seemed to think?"

"Very," Cain took a sip and began to toy with his glass, gently rocking it back and forth in his right hand, "But I have to say this. Your wife's friend Bethany was fantastic."

"She was certainly the only bright spot," Adama admitted, "I think she's going to be the only one who ends up prospering from this whole thing."

"I hope so," there was a note of concern in Cain's voice that again struck Adama as odd, "I really hope so."

Cain then looked Adama in the eye, "You think she'll show up here?"

A glimmer of understanding finally dawned in the back of Adama's head.

"Ah yes," he nodded in a reassuring manner, "Yes, she should. After all, she knows that Ila's going to be here, and they go back a long ways."

"What's she like?" he blurted out.

Adama found it incredulous that Cain was showing this kind of interest in a woman he'd never met. The only thing that made him realize he should oblige his friend, was the fact that Cain wasn't showing the kind of interest he would normally have reserved for a socialator or barmaid.

"Well...." he chose his words carefully, "She's a third generation performer. Her parents had some minor success in their day, but weren't too prominent."

"Sealed?" Cain interjected, meaning he wanted to know that more than anything else.

"No," Adama shook his head, finding this amazing.

"Well.....they should have found something better for her than this play," Cain then spotted a female attendant carrying a tray of elaborate pastries, and he impulsively grabbed one that was thickly layered with cream. As he idly nibbled on it, and then alternated by taking a sip of his brandy to wash it down, Adama decided he needed to give his friend some space for now. He was too afraid he might make an impulsively inappropriate remark that Cain might not take well, given his strange, anxious state.

When he reached his wife, he saw that she had parted company from Sire Uri.

"Well," Ila said with some relief, "I managed to take Uri's mind off the critical drubbing the play's going to receive by telling him how the Institute will be happy to honor him with a presentation if his contribution to our budget is a bit more generous this coming term."

"I may need you to take Cain's mind off something," Adama said dryly.

"What do you mean?"

"Cain is most anxious to meet your friend, Bethany," her husband said. "He seems to be uncharacteristically smitten."

"Wait a centon," a dark expression came over Ila's face, "You've told me about Cain and his.....ways with women. I'm not about to let him pull that felgercarb on my best friend!"

"No, no, this is different," Adama shook his head, "I've seen Cain in action many times with socialators, and this doesn't fit that profile. He's.....interested in her for what could well be all the right reasons."

"Really?" she lifted an eyebrow, "You mean watching her in the play managed to crack that tough facade of his?"

"Look at him," Adama motioned, and they could see on the other side of the room, a visibly anxious Cain glancing up at the entrance every few microns when he wasn't going back to his brandy, or munching nervously on his pastry. "That isn't like, Cain. Believe me."

"I believe you," Ila was amazed.


They turned around and saw emerging from a rear entrance, the smiling face of her friend, Bethany. Now out of the drab costume she had worn in the play, she had transformed herself completely. She wore a classic style white stola, that left the arms and the right shoulder exposed. Her reddish-brown hair was swept up and piled high in an elegant, coiled style that lent an almost regal aura to her appearance. A pair of golden sandals completed the ensemble.

"Bethany, it's good to see you!" Ila came up and embraced her childhood friend. "I wouldn't have missed this for the universe."

"Even if you had to sit through a bad play in the process?" Bethany impishly lowered her voice.

"To Hades with the play," Ila said, "You were terrific."

"You always were my best audience."

"Doing those Primary School pageants with you couldn't help but make me biased when it comes to judging your work," she gave her a friendly pat.

Bethany looked up and noticed Adama, "Adama, it's good to see you again, too! I don't think I've seen you since the day you and Ila got sealed."

"Two yahrens," Adama smiled as he shook hands with her. Already, he was wondering what kind of effect her appearance was going to have on Cain. "And may I echo what Ila said. You were the one bright spot in the play."

He looked back over his shoulder and saw that Cain hadn't noticed her entrance. He had nervously helped himself to another pastry.

"You two chat and catch up on old times. I'll be back in a centon."

Adama made his way over, and had to gently tap Cain on the shoulder to get his attention.

"What?" he jumped, as if he'd been hit by a stun gun.

"Cain," Adama said gently, "Bethany's here. She and Ila are over there. If you'd like to meet her....."

Cain's head darted over, and he practically froze at the sight of the woman who'd been captivating him all evening. Especially now that she was dressed in a way that to Cain, reminded him of a statue from antiquity of a goddess.

Right away, Cain was feeling something inside him that didn't match any of the emotions he'd felt around other women he'd tried to impress himself on before. With those women, it had only been a physical lust and the desire to know them for just one quick evening of fun and a brief respite to get himself ready for the next combat mission. But this was the first woman he could ever recall seeing who had moved him to a different kind of desire. He certainly felt a physical attraction to Bethany, especially the way she looked now, but at the same time he could also feel an equal desire to just talk to her, and get to know more about her as a person. And if he was successful, he knew he wanted it to be for more than just one evening.

The only thing going through his mind was how the routine he always employed on other women was something he had no intention of trying on her. If he wanted to make an impression, as he dearly wanted to do, another approach was needed.

The only problem with that, he realized to his horror, was that he had absolutely no idea what kind of approach that had to be. This was uncharted territory for Cain. A moment in his life that he'd never prepared himself for.

What the frack do I do? he thought.

No answers were coming to him. Only the realization that he was starting to sweat profusely underneath his dress uniform.

"Come on," Adama's gentle voice broke his concentration, "Let's go over and I'm sure Ila will introduce you to her."

Cain took another sip of his drink and clutched it tightly in his hand as he started to follow Adama to the other side of the room. All the while, not realizing that he still held his second pastry in the other hand.

When Adama reached the two ladies, he said pleasantly, "Oh, Bethany, I'd like you to meet an old friend of mine from the Academy," Adama motioned to Cain, "Bethany, Lieutenant Cain."

Cain, trailing Adama by several feet, felt the nervous tension raging inside him so much, that he wondered if his legs would give out from under him any micron.

"Lieutenant," Bethany bowed her head slightly and smiled warmly.

"Yes, ah, I ah..." Cain awkwardly cleared his throat and couldn't understand why he wasn't getting an articulate syllable out, "I just wanted to..." he then extended his right hand to shake hers, and then realized to his horror that his hand was entirely covered in sticky cream from a forgotten pastry that he had been unknowingly squeezing thanks to his inner tension. "Oh, frack." he whispered.

Both Ila and Adama were staring at the tough warrior with a mixture of amazement and embarrassment. Bethany had more of a bemused expression on her face as she took a step toward the nervously sweating lieutenant.

"Can I get you something for that, Lieutenant?" she asked pleasantly and leaned toward him.

Hearing the sound of her voice directed at him only made Cain completely lose track of everything else. Before he could stammer out a response, he became aware that his other hand was still holding a just-refilled glass of brandy. Instinctively, he moved it back to his right hand, forgetting it was still covered in sticky and slippery cream. The effect immediately caused the full glass of brandy to slip out of his right hand and spill its contents all over the front of Bethany's stola, seeping down into the cleavage area.

"Oh my God!" Cain blurted in horror, as Bethany let out a startled gasp. And a micron later, the tumbling glass had shattered directly on the exposed portion of her right foot, which caused her to let out another gasp, this time in pain from the glass cutting through her foot.

"Lords of Kobol, I'm sorry, I----!" Cain placed his right hand on her left shoulder, and then realized he'd just used her as a place to wipe the cream off.

"That's-----," Bethany was still staring down at her foot, which was now covered in a trail of blood. Adama and Ila were frantically moving in, trying to pull her away and get her to a nearby chair.

And all the while, Cain saw to his horror, there were news journalists snapping their holopic devices at the scene, while the rest of the party guests were moving in to try and see what had caused all the commotion.

Slowly, he backed out of the room, wishing at that instant that he was standing in front of a Cylon firing squad.
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