Day 074: In Defense Of A Mountain Man
Summary: Kane speaks with Reno about Truman's situation.
Date: 12 August 2016
Related: None directly.
Kane Reno 


Command Station, Camp Jaha
A small room adjacent to the Chancellor's quarters, the Command station is used not only for meetings with the Council and the Chancellor, but also for planning and strategy sessions. a high table runs down the center of the room, tall enough that there is a collection of stools around it rather than chairs. The walls are brilliantly lit by glowing computer screens, including resource allocation plots, ancient satellite photos, and a clear screen with a topographic map of the area drawn on it with glowing dry-erase marker.
74 Days After Landing

The Chancellor of the Ark was always busy, but the crises and decisions seem to come even more frequently and more urgently on the Ground. Kane has finally cleared some time to see to Reno's request, and has invited him into the Command Station, but while he waits for the teenager, he works his way through a report on a dataslate, occasionally taking notes on a second one — even with the dataslates starting to fail, the Chancellor rates two of them.

Reno was cleaned up as well as any underslept tech could be. The lab coat was worn because of the simple fact that it made him feel socially armoured and could minutely buffer strangers not wanting to take him seriously from age and lack of familiarity with him. He brought his notebook and knocked not wanting to be rude. Simply he noted, "Chancellor…" And let that hang having no real clue how one conducted themselves formally for such things.

If there is a protocol to greeting the Chancellor (and there probably was, at one point), Marcus Kane does not appear to stand on ceremony. In fact, he's seated in one of the high stool now, and he gestures across the table for Reno to take another one, "Take a seat, Mister Loden." The paired dataslates are set aside, and he studies the young man, "You wanted to speak with me about the prisoner, Sergeant Cooper?"

Reno nodded nudging his spectacles back up his nose, but was calm and was hoping Kane was a facts man. He honestly had no clue other than Jumar's review after drinking the Kool-aid. "Yes, sir. And I appreciate the time. It's a … complicated situation. I brought some notes and wanted to see if I might be able to help with some alternates to some proposals that are out there. It's… a trying time. I thought, though, as someone who was over there I might be able to lend some details so we can avoid making some things better for you, others, and try to deescalate the situation."

Kane smiles a little wryly, "Why don't you start with your own proposal, Mister Loden? And then you can work up toward the proposals of others." He spreads his hands slightly, "Or perhaps I can simply note that the current plan is to have Sergeant Cooper stand trial before representatives of the Trikru and the Skaikru, and then you can present your proposal."

Reno dipped his head and said simply, "He mentioned as much." The notebook was set down and he took himself a seat. He was tired, but at this point was content to be a man of bulleted facts. "So my concern is this, if the Trikru are involved the trail won't be fair as the grounders have historically been demonstrative of acts based on emotion and not reason. Even if he lives? He has the suspicion that he will be hunted and doesn't want to live like that. Conversely if it wasn't for him we'd not be able to rescue our people or theirs. Of all the people in there he worked with what little he had to help us out. He's really asking that we assist in finding aid for the children in his family. I know… this will not go favourably so what I ask is when … things are done, if he can be allowed to have his honour and dignity left in tact. I think it could satisfy almost all parties."

Kane listens to Reno's points as the teenager moves down the list, nodding here and there. One can almost see him tracking them as they rack up, so that he can comment in turn, "The Trikru are those who were most wronged by Mount Weather. Even if it was politically possible to exclude them from trying the Mountain Men, I don't know that it would be the right thing to do." He nods slowly, "To the next point, the Trikru have, thus far, been people of their word. If he is acquitted, I think that he should be safe enough to live here in Camp Jaha." He moves along to the next point, "The children, I think, will be safe if we can find a way to keep them alive outside of Mount Weather, no matter whose children they might be." The last point draws a little frown onto the Chancellor's face, however, "Are you suggesting that he simply wants to die well?"

Reno nodded and seemed to relax considerably as there was a calm reason presiding. "I don't know that he has a lot of faith in Trikru mercy. I think he's being pragmatic. Those of us who were taken and who were in there though? If he is tried and the result is that he is to die, that is something we are asking for. He did all he can to do right by us and for that, he deserves that respect. He didn't create the situation." The techie paused and gathered his thoughts on the question posed to him and offered, not without empathy, but definitely in favour of logic and reason. "The situation all around was unfortunate and everyone just wants their camp to survive. He didn't ask for his home to be destroyed or watch his people suffer. He simply saw no reason to see our people suffer either because it wasn't the right thing to do. That said? I might have a lead on figuring out how to patch their immune system using different tools and methods. In short, human body isn't all together different from a computer. Just different hardware really. I gave some of my findings to the Med-techs in hopes they can find a way to help them. There's a bunch of decent folks there ruled by a complete asshole. I do appreciate we are looking to aid the children and civilians I'm… hoping. We have a good opportunity to take this situation from one of horror and war to some constructive rebuilding."

The Chancellor nods, "I don't think he should be looking for Trikru mercy. Trikru justice, if it can be found, along with our own, would be his main hope, assuming that he is innocent of the crimes of the Mountain." By his tone, Kane doesn't seem to think that is particularly likely, but at least he's entertaining the possibility. "I think you may be taking a rather sympathetic view on the Mountain, Mister Loden. They have been systematically kidnapping Trikru and draining them of blood to keep them alive, and then feeding their still-living bodies to other Trikru that they twisted into cannibals. That is not unfortunate in my mind. That is monstrous, and those involved should face justice. Those who were not involved, of course, should be protected from misplaced revenge, and they will be." Still, he nods, "I appreciate the input on the medical situation, Mister Loden. Doctor Li is working her way through the data we have from the Mountain to see how practicable the cure is."

Reno tilted his head to the side and said tiredly, "I think that's more phrasing poorly on my part than unrealistic expectation on anyone's part. With all due respect, I'd appreciate it greatly if people would stop presuming how I feel on things or what my perceptions are. THeir administration is horrific and faulty. I lost five friends to that butchery and we got to see it and live it. We're not somehow blissfully unawares. We knew and we sat there waiting for their military to come at us at gunpoint while Dr. Montgomery decided who tested 'well enough' that we'd be hacked apart for parts. There was a lot of not sleeping in that time." He shrugged and spoke so dispassionately on the issue that one might draw several conclusions of the information relayed. He shifted his weight to lean back giving a small nod of agreement. "Dr. Li seems pretty sound from what I hear of her. But… good. This is reassuring to hear. Mind the last I knew of Ark justice we were hunting down extra heads and arbitrarily dispatching people for ridiculous crimes. I welcome the change in this as we are able to somewhat satisfy the demand of necessary resources. Not that it's over, but hopefully more harmonious."

Kane nods slowly, his features grave, "From what I have heard, it was a horrific situation, and I'm sorry that you all had to experience it. The fact that we could not get you out of there sooner is…" He grimaces, glancing down for a moment, and then draws himself together, "…I'm sorry." And then he nods, "The Exodus Charter is very different, Mister Loden. It is a promise that life can be better now that we are not constrained by ever-diminishing resources."

Reno sat quiet for a moment. It wasn't that he wasn't affected. Perhaps the sterile handling of the topic was from being too greatly affected by it. That said at least he wasn't waving flags and torches. He admitted, "It is that. And… as a second son, I appreciate the revision of our governing mandates. I'm… optimistic. Trying to be. But, moreso, for Mr. Cooper's sake, I appreciate you listening and appreciating our want to have his dignity preserved whatever the outcome. We're all in bad situations in our life. I like to think how we grow; how we choose to seize those opportunities for better change mean something. For what it is worth, if we need to brainstorm alternate solutions for practical need, you will find me willing at your disposal for whatever aid can be presented." He paused and pressed his lips together in a faint show of emotion, maybe a deep masked frustration. "I want this to work, sir. There has to be some place that survives where things can make sense again… if that makes any sense."

Kane nods at Reno's appreciation, "We have the opportunity to create a more humane civilization here than we did on the Ark, Mister Loden. It is my intent to see that we make the most of that opportunity. That will include defending any innocent Mountain Men from threats, and doing whatever we can that does not risk the lives of our own people to see that they can be resettled and become part of that humane civilization. And thank you for the offer of assistance."

Reno nodded easily enough; thoughts sorted and organized away. It was a lot to think about, though he didn't document anything as of yet. "Well if we're not working towards restoring humanity, I'm not quite certain we'd have much of a reason to pursue survival." Having his thoughts sorted he added, "My findings will go to their respective teams. I'm glad my work is appreciated, but, ummm is there anything I can answer for you that you have questions on, Sir?"

The Chancellor nods his agreement at the first point, although the query that follows causes him to frown in thought a moment, and then he asks, "Do you have a problem working with him, Mister Loden? Sergeant Cooper, that is, knowing that he his life was bought with the life of one of your friends?"

Reno had to give it to him. It was a tough question and the 17 year old sat and thought about that before answering. Finally he said shaking his head, "I don't think he asked for it. I don't know that many of them were 'fine' or happy about it any more than the cadets on the Ark were excited to hunt me down for being born and imprison my mother with intent to float her for not wanting to kill her own child. I mean, we've all been part of a crazy situation we did not create ourselves that ultimately perpetuates the life of our people generally at the expense of others. It's a very hard situation all around. Did five of our friends and countless Trikru die? Yes. Does it hurt? Well I'll never get to talk to Ruthie again. Never get to hear about the ideas Cookie had, or Adam's projects. Did he make certain 17 of us lived when he could? Did he try to make the stay less horrible and give us the decency of treating us as people? I think he worked with what he had. he's not perfect, but he did what he could with what he had. There's a lot of guards and Cadets that might be able to say similar. So yeah. Yeah I could work with him. I would hope that he would make that life he has be worth something so this shit never happens again or needs to."

Kane listens to the response, considering it as Reno speaks, and at the end, he nods, "I think that's a very merciful and mature way to look at things. I may not agree with every point that you made, but I respect your position. Unless you have any questions for me, I won't keep you from your work any longer."

Reno nodded once. His index finger nudged his glasses back where they belong. He took a deep breath and kept the casual air to him earnestly responding, "I really appreciate that. I don't expect others to agree, that the consideration is there to be thought on is enough. Ummm, I supposed congratulations on the election and all are in order, but I have nothing else that needs to take up your time right now. Thank you for hearing my proposal, Sir." The tech bowed his head and stood waiting for the polite departures and dismissals to be exchanged before taking his leave. He did what he could do which was not change the past but at the very least try to secure the dignity of the future from a hostile world. It was a small start. For Reno Loden, though, the discussion brought up too many thoughts he'd bee working to keep in a box. He welcomed the linear monotony of coding algorithms to take his mind off his myriad feelings. Life was just easier without the mess of squishy feelings invading whenever they wanted to.

Kane chuckles dryly, noting, "Congratulations or commiseration. There are days when I sincerely wish that Atsuko had won." But that's all that the Chancellor has, letting Reno get back to work and doing the same himself.

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