Council Meeting 2
Log Title
Summary: Wherein long winded women state their case and ultimately, nothing is resolved. Though the Governor is given the buck.
Date: 136 ACH
Related Logs: Related Logs All of the Peerless discussions. (Yeah, that's cheating. Sue me.)
Players:
Isabeau..Nicholas..Manny..Drusilla..Timon..

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Courthouse Carina - Main Level
136 ACH 24277 Souls


Entering, the first thing the person sees is a large plaque showing the symbol of the Colonial Judicial Government branch. From this central lobby, there are many doors, each labeled to serve a different purpose.
-----< Condition Three - Public Area >----

Once more the courthouse lobby has been set up for the council meeting. A table has been set up prominently with chairs about it. Glasses of water, pens and notepads have been provided for each delegate and the Governor. There are other chairs set out for any guests and pitchers of water have been set to one side with glasses neatly stacked next to them. This time, there are no cookies on plates, though there are small half and quarter sandwiches available.
Stepping out of her office, Isabeau walks across the floor to the table. She sets the agenda next to each place, then claims one of the guest chairs. Folding her hands in front of her, she waits patiently for things to develop.

Nicholas is a few minutes early, as he likes to be. Carrying a few notes in a file tucked under his arm, he heads into the courthouse lobby after pausing outside to straighten his tie, heading for the area they've become used to.

Timon wanders in, hair mussed, unshaven, yawning. Dressed in his customary bathrobe. His first stop is the table where the refreshments are laid out. He notes the lack of cookies, frowning deeply, shaking his head, and muttering something unkind about the state of the universe. But he does take a sandwich bit.

Captain Drusilla Oliveira was sitting already in the courthouse lobby, punctual as she was punctilious. She had already taken some time to acclimate her to the courthouse, now all the lady lawyer had to do was wait for the proceedings to begin. It did not seem she would have to wait long as she noted various personages start to appear. One of which she recognized. "Good afternoon, Counselor." Drusilla greeted Isabeau as her civilian counterpart took one of the chairs next to her own.

Manny has a briefcase as usual as she makes her way into the area, tossing her hair over a shoulder and for once not looking /completely/ out of place, even though she can't or chooses not to loose her usual ex-pilot/street chic swagger that is so unique to the young mother. She lifts a hand to people she recognizes before making her way to her seat, chuckling softly to herself.

Isabeau nods to Drusilla and leans over to speak softly to the other lady lawyer. When she sits up, she turns and nods a greeting to those coming in. Nicholas and Manny are given warm smiles, though the expression turns to half hidden amusement as Timon shuffles in. Clearing her throat, she motions to the chairs, "Good day, all. I have taken the liberty of preparing a short agenda. We can begin as soon as you all are ready."

Timon takes a seat, near the back, once he's gotten himself some water to go with his sandwich. He looks over a copy of the agenda he's snagged, but he seems almost more interested in looking for typos on the octagonal paper than in what's on the docket.

Nicholas can't help a faint grin at Timon, nodding to the poet. He takes a seat and crosses his legs at the knee, resting the folder down. "Miss Aragon, Miss de los Reyes." His gray eyes turn to Drusilla lurking. "And Ms…?"

"Captain," Drusilla corrected Nicholas with regard to her honorific, her own grey eyes measuring the intensity of his. "Drusilla Oliveira. Of the Battlestar Genesis Judge Advocate General's corps."

Manny slumps down in her seat, scanning the agenda with a critical eye before making a face, crossing her legs and opening up her briefcase to take out a notepad and pen, slamming the container shut and dropping it on the floor near her feet. She winks and blows an air kiss to Nicholas, giving Isabeau a chin-up in greeting, gaze flicking between Timon and Drusilla. An eyebrow shoots up though when Drusilla introduces herself and sucks her two front teeth. "Ahhh…we bein' all bougie today si?" She sounds amused.

Isabeau clears her throat and lifts the agenda, "The Captain has agreed to be available for the discussion of the Peerless' prisoners so we might as well begin there." There are no spelling errors on the agenda. Isabeau's aid saw to it that everything was perfect. Squaring the paper in front of her, she folds her hands over it. "As some of you may know, the Peerless came to the fleet complete with 300 people. Some or all of these are criminals. They were sent from the colonies to a penal colony to live out their lives away from society. Some of those who came to us might be scientists or workers on the Peerless itself. The problem lies in sorting them out and determining a way to deal with them. Some might have been up for parol. Some have committed resent crimes against the military personnel who crashed on the penal colony. It is up to this body to determine whether these civilian criminals be tried in a civilian court or in a military one." Turning to Drusilla, she inclines her head, "Is that a fair summary, Captain?"

"Captain." Nicholas extends Drusilla a polite nod. He looks down long enough to write two words and a question mark on a scrap of paper, passing it to Isabeau in a manner not intended to be overt. He watches Isabeau while she talks and then turns his attention back to Drusilla.
Nicholas pages: Paper says: Rusille Oliver?

Timon catches Nicholas' eye, returning his grin, a glint in the old man's eye. He may be more alert than he normally shows himself to be. Though, as always, it's hard to tell. He scarfs his sandwich bit, crumbs falling on his agenda.

Finding herself the subject on confirmation, Drusilla raised a fisted hand to cover her mouth as she cleared her throat. She then stated clearly for the benefit of the Council. "The question before this body is the fate of the individuals acquired from Colonial research vessel Peerless and penal colony DW-739, and the manner by which it chooses to participate in that fate." Not quite a clarification so much as an interpretation, and not a very illuminating one. Drusilla was playing her hand close to her chest until she gleaned a better read on the Council members themselves.

Manny is listening really…she is! And idly scribbling on her notebook, drawing stick-figures and resting an elbow against the table as she hmmms to herself. "Ain't anybody started thinkin' about how they can be put to work to contribute to the floating lil' society we got goin' on now? I mean…sure the psychotic frakheads will have to be kept locked away, it is the verdad but uh. What the frak do you want us to say or not say exactly in this questioning? Brig 'em or Not to Brig 'em?"

Isabeau nods to Drusilla's interpretation. Taking the note from Nicholas, she glances at it. Lifting a pen, she makes a few changes, then quietly passes it back to the man. Turning to Manny, she nods, "It is certainly possible that some of the inmates may have skills that we can use. If so, it is possible that some can work for the betterment of the populace. If so, it would need to be under legal guidelines and that means that they would be working toward parol. Before we can do that, however, we would need to determine whether they should be held or released. That would mean either determining whether they can be repatriated into society or not. As we do not have records of their crimes, we would need to interview them and make a determination. Some will need to be tried for their crimes against the military. Therefore, the first question that must be answered is whether they are tried under a civilian or military authority. If civilian, then we have to set up the framework under which to try them. If military, the issue is turned over to Captain Oliveira's office."
Nicholas senses: Isabeau has written Drusilla Oliveira on the paper after scratching out your words.

"Practically speaking," Nicholas comments, "Does the civilian body even have the legal resources to try 300 criminals? While Miss Aragon is a very capable prosecutor, this is a matter which is going to require a massive deal of detailed work. Furthermore, as far as I know we lack even one defense attorney." He glances at Isabeau for confirmation or correction on that.

Timon idly wipes the crumbs from his agenda with his long fingers. That sleepy look is gone, and remains gone, from his eyes and he listens to the back-and-forth about these three-hundred prisoners.

Already she was gathering data, watching the subtle nuances of the council members, gauging a sense of the dynamics of this body of men and women charged toward presenting some semblance of order and stability to the civilian population. Good luck on that, Drusilla thought to herself. She decided to strike, bearing her remarks directly to Manny. "To decide what extent your council is willing to disregard the law it is sworn to uphold to meet the practicalities of the situation." She uttered the words smoothly, in a even cadence, though the inflection of her tone, the slight development of a trailing shrill, imbued the syllables with an intensity that indicated this was no simple matter. "What Miss Aragon did not tell you is that we have no sustentative evidence that these colonists have been convicted of any crime. Those records were lost prior to their joining with the Fleet. By the constitution set forth under the Articles of Colonization these acquirees hold the same rights and privileges of any citizen of the Colonies. We can not hold them indefinitely and some we may not be able to hold at all."
(D) Drusilla paused dramatically, her lips pursing into a thin line. Her dull grey blank eyes traveled over each individual, encompassing them all in what she was about to say. "The question is not who to imprison or not, but whether or not this Council is willing to take extraordinary measures toward suspending the Articles in order to prevent hundreds of suspected murders, rapists, and the like from being released into the population once their detention upon Genesis is concluded."

Manny rolls her eyes some and scratches her head with her pen before smoothing down her hair and pursing her lips thoughtfully. "300..divided in half is ahhh 150 I think and so we do half and half so nobody is overstressed…" She does the math apparently on that piece of paper, brow furrowing before she slams a hand down against the table. "AHA! Neither the military nor the civilian bodies got the time and energy to try 300 hardheaded people, so split it in the middle, both parties gonna have to work together anyhow eventually seeing as it is the military that keep our asses safe and it is the civilian that help the military people get laid. We've got alot of shi-stuff to smooth over in relations, legal business might be a good place to start, si? Find those who deserve to be locked up and those who don't…" Her gaze flicks from Isabeau to Nicholas and then over to Drusilla and she has to just stare for a few moments. "Scrrrrrrrrrrrrreeetch, hold up, freeze, shove the viper back in the launch tube chica and tell me where in the hell we suddenly got to disregarding the law and bull like that?" BlinkBLINK.

Isabeau leans back in her chair as Drusilla speaks. It is her turn to watch the council to gauge reactions. Turning to Nicholas first, she nods, "That is the case. We do not, at present have a defense attorney. However, if we work in cooperation with the JAG's office aboard the Genesis, it is possible to handle this appropriately. I believe that the Captain can handle either prosecution or defense. I am trained in both." Then, she cant's an ear to Manny and she smiles a little, though it is quiet, "If we uphold the law, we can only hold and try those who have committed crimes since we discovered the Peerless and the penal colony, Ms. De los Reyes. Every other man and woman aboard would need to be set loose into the civilian population. We have no record of their crimes. Therefore, by law, they are free men and women. According to the law. Further, even if we were able to match crime to person, we cannot retry them under the double jeopardy clause. So. If we hold them without a crime, we are breaking the law. If we let them go, free them into society, we are turning loose several hundred violent individuals. I was part of a trial that sent several criminals to this penal colony prior to joining the military. Believe me when I say that, at least those three that I dealt with, were beyond redemption." She pauses, her gaze turning to take in each individual before returning to Manny, "Although it is possible that the situation as it stands might give some of them pause; encourage them to become citizens again, it will not affect all of them that way."

"I don't believe anyone has suggested suspending due process," Nicholas says. "We recognise that all have rights. However those rights also extend to the population not on trial here. Has the issue of psychological evaluations been brought up? We are not exactly fit, sitting here, to determine whether a person can function in society."

Drink, drink, drink. Timon slurps at his water. Gray eyes on Drusilla, wrinkled brow furrowed thoughtfully at her. Thoughtful. Not happy thoughts, from his expression, but other than that it's difficult to tell what's turning in his mind. He's seated in the back, looking more alert than usual, if still somewhat abstracted.

Well that achieved its desired effect, Drusilla thought to herself as she stopped to take consideration of Manny's outburst. She had their attention now. Isabeau's words were a salve to her ears as the other lawyer explained the situation in more detail. Good. Somehow they'd managed to work at least in some semblance of tandem here, in spite of the fact that most of their prep time had been spent searching for some sort of precedent that would absolve them of this discussion. Efforts that proved in vain.
(D) "I have suggested suspending due process, Councilman." Drusilla said flatly to Nicholas. "I suggest it not because I believe it is the right or correct thing to do but because it is the most viable alternative to unleashing a force of wanton destruction upon your population. The detainees are being held currently, ostensibly as part of an ongoing criminal investigation. Afterwards, the majority may be held pending trial for crimes allegedly committed subsequent to Peerless' landing on DW-739. I am not confident that under the existing framework we have the evidence by which to convict. Those not who are not convicted of any crime, according to due process, will be released into the civilian population." The made a pregnant pause upon which to add, "Regardless of whether they are fit to be so.
(D) "Extreme measures will have to be taken, be it on the part of the Civil or Military authorities." Drusilla concluded. "Being as we are in a state of wartime, military protocol has more such measures at its legally defined disposal; however, that would require this Council to surrender authority of the affair to Colonel Altair, either in whole or part. At present, this remains largely a civilian matter."

Manny does watch Drusilla like she has a second head or something before just /looking/ at Isabeau and then pinching the bridge of her nose as she takes a deep breath and then another deep breath, carefully holding her tongue save for the slip of, "Turning people's lives into a bunch of political bullshi-" But she does cut herself off in time to uncross and recross her legs, jaw setting and she takes another deep breath.

Isabeau begins to answer Nicholas when Drusilla takes that one. She watches him in particular initially, then turns to look at each in an attempt to gauge reactions. Once more, she flickers a glance over toward Timon. Turning to Manny, she reaches a hand out, then draws it back, "We are not turning the lives of these people into political bullshit, Ms. De Los Reyes. We are asking this body to make a decision. Either they need to be processed using civilian resources or military. That is all. If you; as a body, believe that the civilian authority can give them a better shot at justice, then vote that way. If you believe that the military can do a better job, then that is what you must do. If, however, you believe that they have a better chance with a joint commission comprised of members of the military and civil justice departments, then that is what you must go with. Once authority has been determined, then certain options naturally lead from each including the possibility of psychological assessment, working toward freedom and others. This is not primarily a political decision, actually, but a practical one."

Ire has no place in Nicholas' tone, nor flatness. "What are the details of these measures, exactly, Captain? We need to be informed of exactly what the military's process is before we can make a well-educated decision."

Timon is still observing, though he's doing little else of interest. Sip, sip, sip. The only sound he makes is a clearing of his throat, but it's not timed as a reaction to anything in particular.

"Several options exist from a military standpoint, sir." Drusilla said, her attention turning to Nicholas as he addressed her. She seemed pleased by the question, manifested by the more evident sign of respect her address of 'sir' rather than the more opaque use of his title that she'd previously been using exclusively. At least, she thought to herself, someone who was actually starting to listen. "The simplest would be to press the detainees into military service. That would set aside the need to take any legal action until such time as the Colonies are no longer at war. By present projections, that could conceivably last for some time. At the same time it would keep the detainees in a carefully monitored and secure environment. Alternatively, the military could also declare the colonists of DW-739 enemy combatants and consequently subject them to military tribunals. Those two are the most promising. Their legality, however, could be argued and any such measure would have to be agreed upon by this Council and the Fleet Commander, Colonel Altair."
(D) Taking a slow, deep breath of air, Drusilla continued, addressing her comments to the body of assembled council members as a whole now rather than simply Nicholas. "From a civilian standpoint, the simplest option would be to suspend the articles of Colonization and try the detainees under a provisional judicial framework designed especially for this affair. I believe my counterpart, Miss Aragon, would like to address the limitations and dangers of taking such a route on her own. Another solution to take into consideration, though, would be to leave the colonists on DW-739 and wash your collective hands of the matter. Anecdotal evidence suggests that they were sent there under the auspices of Colonial law, so legal arguments could be made in favour of this decision. By enacting such a measure, though, you would by all projections be sending these people to their doom."
Manny pages: I apologize ahead of time but…I have no idea what is being said/going on anymore. My poses may reflect this

"Frakkin'…is that all? She wants a 'yay or nay' from us? That's it? How the hell we know the Military's gonna do a better job than the Civies here anyways? I just honestly believe /one/ group of people can't frakkin' take care of 300 people, I don't care if they be in a uniform or not." She points to what Nicholas says, and her accented voice isn't yet tinged with anger or irritation. Yet. "I maintain, ooo big word, si, I maintain they still need to divide it all and both have say in things here or we're gonna see more trouble than we are good…then if we gonna run out of chocolate and all the men will be cowering in their bedrooms cuz their women are on the rag, and without booze, chocolate, or cigarettes….and then you add more drama on top of the 300 criminals and just…" She trails off. "You see where I'm going here? Military needs to present a plan for their 150, Civie side needs to present a plan for their 150 then we can make a formal vote or decision about things from there." Then she does listens to Drusilla, eyes starting to glaze over some before she sighs and just goes back to writing something down on her notepad, just piping up to mutter. "You always got people in penal colonies who don't deserve to be there." Like…80 something percent of her family, but that's another story.

Folding her hands over the agenda, Isabeau pays attention to the words as well as the undercurrents of the discussion. Manny is given a nod, "It is likely true that a joint venture has the greatest chance of success." A nod at the prompt and Isabeau clears her throat, "Yes, suspending the Articles would be the simplest option under a strictly civilian authority, but there are issues, naturally. First, while it has the greatest chance of safe guarding the lives of the civilians already settled in our communities, it has the potential to infringe on the rights of the prisoners. Secondly, it sets a dangerous precident. It would say that we are willing to throw aside our own laws when they become inconvenient." Her gaze sharpens and she looks around the room, "In order to do so, we would need a unanimous vote of the Counsil. We would need to be prepared to outline the duration of this breach and detail explicitely what we hope to accomplish. It would allow us to try these individuals without regard for double jeopardy and would allow us to impose mandatory psych evaluations." She pauses to give everyone a chance to consider what she has said in conjunction with what Drusilla has said.

"If we divide it, however," Nicholas points out, "Then we are saying off the bat that half these people will receive different treatment than the other half." He looks back at Drusilla. "Leaving them on this DW-739 isn't an option in my opinion. Surely they were receiving food shipments and other supplies from the colonies; now without that or the Peerless, they'll starve." He considers for a few moments, then asks Drusilla and Isabeau. "The military has been known to use the death penalty in convictions of treasonous acts within its own ranks." He says that carefully, trying to his voice neutral as to his opinion of it. "If handed over completely to military court, would you have said penalty on the table?"

Timon eases down in his chair, making a thoughtful, nasal "Hrmph" sort of snorting sound. He continues to watch the council, and Drusilla.

Drusilla cast her eyes up to Isabeau for a flicker of a moment before stating toward Nicholas, "By my understanding, the death penalty would be on the table in both military and civilian courts, depending on the specific crime for which the defendant is accused. There is some question as to the precise legal framework of a civilian court would embody. As we are all aware, not all Colonies subscribe to the death penalty. Where Federal law is inapplicable, Caprican common law will be the most likely alternative."

Manny lowers her eyes and toys with her pen before drawing something else on her notepad and muttering under her breath, using horrible language at a very very low level as she keeps her thoughts to herself for now.

Isabeau nods to Drusilla, "Apologies. I missed that, yes. The legal framework would need to be built with an accepted Colony of order. Some of the criminals were originally sentenced on Caprica, but not all of them. We would need to determine which colony held precedence, or… and this would be much harder, develop a legal structure here to handle this. The death penalty was utilized on some colonies and not others. We do not have the option of returning them to a penal colony, nor is it viable to leave them on the Peerless. For one thing, a penal colony would need to be established outside of cylon influence and any planet suitable would also be suitable for colonization by our citizens. For another, it would be unconscionable to leave them without food or water. Even if it were handled within the full authority of the law." Refocusing on Nicholas, she adds, "So, yes. The death penalty is a possibility no matter which way this goes." Manny's use of horrible language is too low to be understood, though the mutter is likely recognized for what it is. Timon's dark glances and snorting sound is caught and the lawyer darts him a glance.

Timon returns Isabeau's glance, winking at her. It's a rakish sort of gesture, apropos of nothing. Perhaps meant as encouragement. Perhaps he's just leering. He's a fly on the wall to these proceedings.

"In my opinion it's also unconscionable to airlock people to asphyxiate," Nicholas replies, matter-of-factly. "But that is somehow sanctioned. However, that's off-topic. The main problem here, if I can adequately define it, is whether or not we can afford to bend traditional and binding law for circumstance." He raises one finger, indicating article A. "So if this were turned over to civilian court then automatically there would be no option but to declare all of them free, due to being unable to charge them again with the same crime. There would be no trial, there couldn't be. Versus…" He holds up a second finger. "Ceding authority over these cases to the military, who possess the power to get around legal precedent and put them either into military service for the duration of wartime, or design a tribunal for this specific matter. Out of what information I'm not sure, but that's what I'm hearing. Is that an accurate description of the choices?"

Manny seems to be going through the alphabet of curse words, listening and glowering where she sits.
Announcement: Genesis shouts, "Just to be clear, Raptors will be able to report to the vipers. Vipers relay to CIC. It'll be a chain of communication."

Isabeau nods to Nicholas, for she does agree on that score. Softly, "Indeed." Legality is one thing and morality something else. When they do not mesh, life is difficult. She nods once more, "Or, C, whether we form a joint commission between the two bodies to deal with the issues. And if C, then under whose jurisdiction, civil or military." She considers, then adds, "And, if B or C is chosen, we will need to put together a plan of action which should include psychiatric evaluations of the prisoners to determine their suitability for release."

Nicholas says, "By joint commission, what do you mean exactly? A half-and-half jury of peers?"

You say, "That would be determined by this body and submitted to Colonel Altair. I had a panel of judges in mind personally. Comprised of equal parts civilian and military authority. The Captain would present one side of the case while I the other. There are options that way, actually. Mr. Kastile can be charged with the majority of the crimes against the military as he was in charge. We could try the prisoners en-mass. Or, we can take the cases one at a time. Those who did not actively take part in the crimes against military personnel can be released to a rehabilitation program that would include psych evals and what amounts to work visas until they prove their ability to survive in civilian society.""

"I'm not sure how one could justify trying them en masse," Nicholas replies. "It would need to be separate no matter how it was done." He settles back in his seat, tapping the end of his pen against the folder on his leg. "I've heard enough, I think. The information needs to be forwarded to the members of council not present. We can submit our recommendations privately to the Governor, who has the final say."

Manny jerks a finger toward Nicholas and waves a hand vaguely. "Doesn't really matter what the frak I think here, so when ya'll get your shit together and present organized findings/plans I'll be here to say 'okay' or 'frak no'." She snaps off a mock salute and relaxes back in her seat.

It is just possible that Timon's wink, though noted belatedly, is the source of the faint blush that touches Isabeau's cheeks. She nods to Nicholas, "There is precident, however." Leaving it, she turns to Manny, "Seconded?" The woman's comment touches a blink and she inhales, "Um. Okay, then. Um… Forwarding recommendations to the Governor it is. Next agenda item. Mr. Luma. Were you able to get a reply on the proposal to have jobs on the Peerless opened to the civilian population?"

Nicholas gives Isabeau a dry smile. "What do you think, Miss Aragon?"

Timon simply stays in fly-on-the-wall mode. Nothing to see here, folks.

Isabeau clears her throat slightly and nods to Nicholas, "Very well. I will pursue this with him. When I spoke to him last, he did mention that he would speak to a few people and get back with us. I had hoped that he had spoken to you, but…" She sighs and lifts two fingers to press her temple, "Okay. Onward, then. Do we have a report on food distribution? I have heard that the Peerless is producing in adequate quantities and that we are being provided for. Is this true, or are there issues?"

Nicholas glances down at his own notes for that one. "Security at the distribution ports is a problem on the Destiny, but they're handling it as best they can. The amounts coming over have thusfar been adequate. Our main concern is continuing production, which brings us back to staffing the Peerless and not letting her gardens go to waste."

Manny is nodding slowly where she sits, trying to keep up and the like as she looks between the people speaking annnnnd writes something else down.

Isabeau nods to Nicholas, "Mmm. Yes, and the question of security brings up another question. I would love to see a chief of police appointed. Something to consider for the next meeting." It is her turn to make a quick note on the otherwise clean page on her notepad. Looking up again, she nods to Nicholas, "It might behoove us to put forward a recommendation that Colonel Reed Carter be assigned to the Peerless. He is a scientist with a lot of experience working with civilians. He would be more amenable to doing so again, I would think."

"Miss Aragon, who the military decides to appoint to what posts is their business," Nicholas replies, crossing his legs. "I don't know Carter and can't say a word about him, other than that the proposal about civilians on the Peerless also went to him, and he didn't respond either."

Manny twirls her pen before squinting at Isabeau and then looking back over to Nicholas and then down at her notepad and she sighs softly. "Why not leave the Colonel alone where he is, and find somebody else to take over the Peerless if need be?" She lifts a shoulder.

Isabeau sighs, "Indeed, Mr. Luma, however, there is precident for suggestions coming from the civilian government. Sending a suggestion does not in any way mean that it will be given more weight than any other consideration. It just seems to me that it would show the military that we are cognisent of the issues at hand. And, if there is a choice between one choice and another, all other considerations being equal, it might offer a different point of view." She pauses, then frowns, "Oh? I had forgotten that." If she knew. Turning to Manny, she speaks softly, "Well, as we are at war, the ship itself is considered a Military asset. That means that the Military has to staff it at certain levels so they will decide on whom to give command of it to."

It's unclear how closely Timon is listening to all these proceedings. But he's still here, making some idle marks on his agenda with a pen. He's awake and everything.

"I can't suggest someone I know nothing about," Nicholas says, matter-of-factly. "I've never met the man. Only heard his name once or twice before now. If he were actually interested, one would think he might have responded. I can't say my confidence in his willingness to work with civilians is very high."

Manny just blinks at Isabeau. "Uuuuuh, my mama got killed in this current war and I almost lost my daughter, you think I don't realize we're at war?" She makes a face and just grips her pen more tightly. "That's why the way I figure it, the Colonel's doin' a good job where he is, don't need input from us saying 'yes, move his ass again'."

Isabeau nods, "True enough. Perhaps we should invite the Colonel to speak at the next meeting. We can take up the topic of the Peerless then." She makes another note on her pad and looks to those assembled, "That does it for official business. Does anyone have anything that they wish to bring up at this time?" She looks at Manny, but does not go into the litany of her own losses. Rather, she nods once, her tone almost a hair over toward too gentle, "I am sorry for your loss." Yes, she is. "Very well. With two against, we can table that motion. Anyone have anything else to add?"

Nicholas likewise isn't laundry-listing his war grievances. "I don't believe so. And I am not quite as interested in hearing the Colonel talk away at a meeting as I am in seeing someone in command acknowledge that we exist. Since the only person they seem to communicate with is you, I'll trust you'll pass the message along."

Manny is a bit defensive it seems about war things just shaking her head. "No need to be sorry." She takes a deep breath and then another. She also just barely keeps from asking the woman to stop talking to her like she's stupid. "Mmm…at this time….some time, we need to talk more about more close to home issues but after ya'll calm down about the other stuff, maybe."

Isabeau nods once, "Very well. I will see what I can do on that score." She half smiles at Manny, for she really isn't talking to her as if she is stupid. Or, that is not the intent at all. A conversation for another time, absolutely. Nodding, then, "Agreed. We do have a proposal for an education program to consider. Also, there is the question of housing standards and the monetary proposal. I do not know if everyone has had a chance to look over the packets?"

"I sent back a response to the council on the currency proposal some time ago," Nicholas reminds Isabeau. "As for education, Dr. Pike is currently coordinator of that sector. I'll see where she is on the matter." He looks back at Manny. "Did you want to bring up the issue now or wait?"

Manny considers that now that attention is on her and she opens her mouth and shuts up before just looking down to her notepad and shrugging. "It can wait." She coughs and nods.

Isabeau nods, "Ah, you did. I am sorry, Mr. Luma." She looks up and nods, "Thank you." Turning back to Manny, she pauses, "Um. If you want to, now is not a bad time." Looking between the two, she is clearly curious.

Nicholas doesn't say anything. He lightly scratches his eyebrow with his ring finger, looking at Isabeau, then Manny.

Manny tilts her head to the side before shrugging a shoulder. "If somebody is already taking care of it, what the hell do I know?" She sets her pen down carefully, shrugging both shoulders before adjusting her neckline and taking a deep breath. "I'm just here to say 'aye' or 'nay'."

Isabeau inhales slowly, her gaze focused on the woman opposite, "But… No. Please, Ms. De los Reyes. If there is something that you are concerned with, something that you wish to do or say, please. What is it? Your input is as valid as anyone's here."

Nicholas doesn't assist in the ego-stoking. He crosses his legs the other way, spinning his pen once over his fingers.

Manny frowns and just asks bluntly. "When is our attention gonna be put on ya know…the /people/ who are still adjusting to all of this? A detailed and well working education system..activities, input from the people and what not? Until we start with that, no matter if I have both a military and civilian perspective it doesn't matter yet, there's too much ahhh…'oh is it civilian, oooooooh no it is military' drama going on for now. So. I have to wait either way."

Isabeau nods slowly, her gaze slipping to Nicholas, then back again, "No… You are right. We do need to do something to help the people on these ships. If Dr. Pike is working on the education aspect, what would you suggest we look at next?" She lifts her pen, clearly ready to take notes.

"I'm sorry that those of us who are out there every day working with the people aren't good enough for you, Miss de los Reyes," Nicholas replies, spinning the pen again. "Yes please, what would you like us to do?"

Manny starts to respond to Isabeau before quickly looking back over to Nicholas and just staaaaaring. "You have no frakkin' idea what I'm talking about." Then she starts working on setting her briefcase on the table and packing her things back up. "Frakin' idiot acting like I suggested people better than other people when all I want is all the children on the damn ship to have opportunities, chances, futures…everybody have a job, everybody have the chance to get educated and get a job, placed like frakin'-" The rest of what she has to say has to be bleeped out.

Isabeau sighs softly and lifts a hand, "Wait. That is why we are here, Ms. De los Reyes. Honestly. If you have ideas that have not been presented, please do so. If you would rather submit them in writing, that is fine too. I will make up the agenda for the next meeting sometime in the next week. If you would get your topics to me, we can certainly discuss them. Just…" She lowers her gaze a little, then looks up again and falls silent a moment, "Anyway. Please."

"Well then." Nicholas stands up, himself, and caps his pen. "If you'll excuse me. This 'frakking idiot' has a training to do for the Destiny's newly hired engineers. Since Miss de los Reyes is unsatisfied with the general progress, I'll skip my lunch break in her honour. Ladies." His voice never strays from polite, though clearly there was some insult taken. He tucks his file under his arm and starts for the door.

Manny just glares at Nicholas. "Are you DEAF?!" She starts to rise from seat, flash of that Viper Jockey still in her as she takes a deep breath and looks back to Isabeau. "I'm sorry Senora…Senorita…I'll work on something. But obviously I am not one who fits in general with this whole…thing." She snaps her briefcase close. "A good man there is caught up in whatever he's in, enough so he doesn't hear a word I say. Which is fine. I've been ignored, misinterpreted and had my words twisted most of my life. I'll be at the next meeting and learn how to keep my mouth shut and study how to write ah…things down if it is really urgent."

Isabeau rises, her gaze focused on the two members who are gathering things together and heading out in righteous or indignant ire. She draws in a breath, then nods, "Very well, Mr. Luma. Good luck with the training." Turning to Manny, she adds, "I am sorry that you feel that you have been misinterpreted. Perhaps you have been. I can guarantee that you will be taken more seriously if you avoid cursing and calling people names. It is something that we all have to be careful of." Once more, she inhales a calming breath. "I look forward to what you have to submit and hope that you can see improvement soon." She looks back to where Nicholas is headed. For a moment, she seems almost about to speak again, but shakes her head, "Good evening, all."

It's a good thing Manny shouted, as that seems to be the only reason Nicholas turns back. To her question he replies, softly, "Nearly deaf, yes. As a matter of fact. If you wish to use that as ammunition too, go ahead. Have a good evening, both of you." He continues towards the door.

"You can't guarantee that." Manny sighs and shakes her head slowly as she picks up her briefcase. "The only thing I give a damn about right now is my children and the rest of the children on the ships." She seems more emotionally worked up, and not necessarily angry as she looks back to the woman. "That's why I'm here. That's why I'll always be here. I'm sorry if I offended the man, but it is the only thing I have to live for." Then she just looks after Nicholas and looks horribly confused. "…who is…shooting ammo at…" She pinches the bridge of her nose and exhales slowly.

Isabeau clears her throat, "He meant, that if you want to call him 'deaf', it will hurt. He is almost deaf, yes. So, if he misinterpreted something you said, it is likely that he did not hear it properly. I am learning sign language to interpret for him, but I have not gotten into the habit and…" She blushes, looking after Nicholas, "I forgot to do it today. So, I owe both of you an apology." Looking back, she nods, "We are all worried about the children, Ms. De los Reyes. And the people. Jobs are important. But nothing is easy. Nothing will happen over night… I know that you know this. That is partially why I want you to submit a plan in writing. So we can get a more concerted effort going. But, please understand. Mr. Luma in particular has been working toward that goal since things went to hell in a hand basket. He feels just as passionately as you do, even if he is not as boisterous in expressing it."

"If he's working on things? Then he has nothing to defend." Manny grimaces and shakes her head slowly. She peers at Isabeau and then in the direction Nicholas went before looking back to Isabeau. "I asked if he was deaf, if he is? Then that helps me. I know not to speak to him cuz I don't already speak the best." She runs her face over her hand. "Some of us…don't have forever to wait, Miss Official Person." She shrugs and sighs. "Whoever Mr Luma is? He has nothing to worry about, I wasn't talking about him, I was talking about the people who do /not/ have anything productive to do or benefit from. Very clear differences."

Isabeau inhales slowly and nods, "It does help to know. I just could not mention it without his permission. Which makes it awkward." She looks back to Manny, tilting her head a little, "It… did sound as though you were speaking to him, actually. Or about him specifically. Maybe we can program in some explaination time for the next meeting? So everyone stays on the same page? And, it's Isabeau, please. Or, Ms. Aragon if we are being official."

Manny just shakes her head slowly. "I know, I had a brother who was uh…well special." She adjusts her cleavage before quirking an eyebrow. "I didn't address the man til he started talking directly to me like I was saying something wrong by speaking up for the people…" She shudders and sighs. "I'll work on getting him a gift and yeah, sure, next meeting I'll make nice. Fine, Ms. Aragon, I think we're supposed to be all proper and polite and official here."

Isabeau nods, "I know. I think he hoped that his efforts would have been noticed. He has been working hard to see people employed. I know it isn't easy." Licking her lips, she smiles and nods, "That might help more than you know." More softly, she adds, "Thank you for sticking it out. The government needs your voice, Ms. De los Reyes."

Manny bows her head, holding her briefcase and clearing her throat. "I have no idea who the hell he is, so I'll work on rectifying that Ms. Aragon." Then waggles some fingers before turning on her heel and making her way off and out, flicking hair off a shoulder. "Anytime! I stick like glue senorita." And off she goes.

Isabeau nods and smiles, "He's a lot of fun, actually. I think you'll like him." If the two will give each other a chance, "Talk to you later, Senorita." Turning, she makes her way back into her office.

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