Title: The Book of Memory
Show: Battlestar Galactica
Spoilers: Through episode 2.20, "Lay Down Your Burdens Part II," aired 3-10-2006.
Summary: "She remembers you, or one of you. It's so hard to tell anymore."
The Book of Memory
Gaius disappoints you immediately. The whores behind him, the easy surrender.
You make your way toward the school tent, lamplight gleaming through the seams.
She is alone when you arrive, and her body tenses beneath her sweater--fear? Anger? Catalogued in someone's consciousness is the touch and scent of the skin beneath that harsh wool, the way it glows again, cured, the way it deserves a finer cloth. She pushes up her sleeves, baring it to you.
She remembers you, or one of you. It's so hard to tell anymore.
Laura Roslin was willing to work with you.
You met her on Cloud 9, in a room littered with unwrapped chocolates. You were a beaten version of yourself, scarred and sad, and you pulled off your shirt to prove it. You saw the way her eyes narrowed at the sight of your skin. You didn't think you would destroy the ship yet, didn't think you would destroy yourself--didn't think that all the evidence would be gone, leaving someone somewhere to wonder if this was imagined, a daydream that fluttered across another someone's mind, accidentally uploaded. When she pushed her fingers into you, it didn't hurt.
Her hands smeared the sweat between your marked breasts, human and Cylon together.
Which Six was the Six that knew her skin, which Six was the Six that remembered? All you know for sure is she has not yet touched this body.
She doesn't have to tell you how life is hard on this planet. The cold tents. The constant rain. The way the light is bruised at dawn and dusk, the pale figures moving down the street as if in pain. More students leaving every day, gone from the classroom to pick through muddy gardens, dirt on their faces every blue morning--survival over school, their parents say. You look into her eyes.
How do you know these things? Whose consciousness do you share?
She asks what you want, and you take her hand. Peace. Her skin is cold and fragile in your palms.
The world was yellowed, and Kara Thrace killed you.
Her body fell on top of yours, and through the pain you felt her weight--her legs slipping down yours, the wetness spreading across your chest.
Before you died, you saw her still face.
Your memories are not your own. This body bears no scars, not from Kara Thrace, not from the Pegasus. With her free hand, Laura Roslin opens your jacket and pulls up your shirt, searching. Goosebumps rise on your skin. What happens next is quick and practical, like everything else on this planet--you leave your clothes on, you sit on the desk and bunch your skirt around your hips.
Who will remember this body when this body is gone? Her fingers are slick inside of you, and you do not want to die. You want to be in this body always, this body marked with the prints of her hands. You call her name out loud enough for her to hush you, pinching your thigh and leaving redness behind--evidence, and you don't want it destroyed.
This is real, you tell yourself, and your future selves, just in case. This is real, this is real, this is real.
Your first day on Caprica, you rolled in green grass. You had never felt such softness against your skin.
What luxuries this species possessed--the hot sky, the grass beneath you, the sheer variety of their bodies, round and richly shadowed, sharp and gleaming in the sunlight. You squinted your eyes against the glare, the way they did all around you.
You met Gaius and your future was so bright.
Outside, Kara Thrace waits, in dirty clothes and hair matted with rain. You look at her when you leave, feeling the bruise warm on your thigh. Everything as it should be.