You can taste the sins on her lips. She kisses you fluently, but her mouth is full of secrets. You skim your palms up her thighs, trying to read the ciphers through her skin.
She flips you under her and presses your arms to the bed. She has never let you make love to her.
"Gina," you say. She's unbuttoning your shirt, running her tongue along the swell of your breast. Sixes never fail to leave you breathless.
"D'Anna," she says. You can feel her smile hidden in your cleavage.
"How's the President?"
Gina looks up. "Your sources are very good," she says. She's no longer smiling. "Will I be hearing about my meeting with Laura on the wireless?"
You follow the outline of her scapula to her nape, tug undone the halter tie of her dress. "We walk among our enemies." You trace the chain of scars down her spine. "You know that better than any of us. I haven't forgotten my calling, Gina, and it isn't reporting the news."
"I only want peace. You believe there's a higher calling than that?" She's pushing your pants over your hips, now, nails scraping your belly.
"Tell me what you told Roslin." She spreads you open with her thumbs so her breath answers the pulpy inside of your cunt. You arch toward her mouth. "Tell me your mysteries, and I'll tell you mine."
You were touching Caprica at the moment of her awakening. One second the clone was an inert biomass, the next the pulse of her consciousness resonated through your skin. You stroked her cheek to quell the throbbing terror and thanked Me for the miracle of resurrection.
You helped Caprica out of the tank, led her to the showers. The resurrection center was bare and sterile, but when you guided her under the spray she saw it as a waterfall, bracing and lush. She bowed her head while you sponged the life-giving ooze off her body. Naked as babes, you slid against each other, and when she raised her eyes, they were clear and bottomless as the projected mountain pool. Unfathomable to you.
Individuality was a perversion. You monitored her, after that, for the glimpses of distinctiveness shimmering in the lilt of her voice, the slant of her hips. When you frakked her, you grabbed handfuls of her flesh as if you could squeeze out the contagion. You thought she was the one who needed to be saved. Then, sated, you rubbed your thumb over the bruises you'd left. She stretched, lithe and pale, like you imagined she had in Gaius Baltar's bed.
"Pray with me," you said. "Let me help you find peace among your own kind."
She rolled onto her side, turned that crystal gaze upon you. "The Prayer to the Cloud of Unknowing was always my favorite."
You clasped her hands between yours and recited the verse in tandem. "Heavenly Father, grant us the strength to follow Your path, the wisdom to know it, and above all, a measure of acceptance."
You never saw acceptance in Caprica's eyes.
Gina has two fingers hooked just shy of your sweet spot, and she's licking just alongside your clit, as if keeping her mouth full of you means you can't make her talk.
You flex your thighs around her shoulders, chase her tongue with your hips. "I frakked the President too."
Gina lifts her head, but her hand slides home. You don't know if it's the thrust or the look she gives you, icy and sure, that makes you gasp.
"You frakked her before," she says. You feel her faith vibrating inside you, and it jolts you up on your elbows.
She shimmies on top of you, creamy skin stroking you all over, fingers pushing into you fast and hard. "Listen," she says. Her kisses are an oratory. As your muscles clench around her in waves, her lips and hands spell out the truth of the child's nativity.
"Oh God," you say, and come.
"D'Anna," she says, when you've caught your breath, "turn off the camera." The red light is blinking on the night stand.
You resurrected. You gasped up out of the biogel, rigid with shafts of pain from your broken skull, and nobody was there to soothe you into life.
The chamber was ghostly with the slick, naked shapes of new-minted copies, each shaking off the echo of some fatal trauma. Gradually, your memories coalesced: the cafe bombing; the captured terrorist; the corrupted models. The last thing you saw before you died was Caprica's face, alight with murderous passion.
You took a shower. In wardrobe you met a Centurion, and queried it for the date and time, the location of the truant staff: they were gathered in the square outside the hub; nearly two days had passed since you died. When you found a data port and dipped your hand into it, the only signal was the Prayer to the Cloud of Unknowing, on a loop. Caprica's audacity dazzled you, despite yourself.
You worked around the jammed network by opening your consciousness to other Threes. The standoff downtown bloomed into in a virtual panorama in your mind: Fives, Twos, and Threes barricaded inside the building, Caprica and Sharon's faction encamped on the streets around it. The projection zoomed in like the dive of one of the raiders, screaming through the sky above in dumb loyalty to their favored masters. In close-up, you could see that the swarm of Sixes, Eights and their followers were armed.
You started walking. When you reached the margins of the slapdash blockade, you approached the first Six who wasn't pointing a gun at you and said, "Take me to Caprica."
You watch the water sluice down Gina's curves like a baptism. The showers, like everything on Cloud 9, are luxurious, and there's plenty of room for her to pull you into the stall, all slippery hands and lather.
"What will you do with this videotape?" she says. "Transmit it back to Three, like the others?"
"We both know it's too late for that." You wonder if this copy could murder you, a fellow Cylon, as Caprica did. You wonder if it would make a difference if, on Caprica, the warring camps knew Sharon's baby had been born. "Is this the world you want for the blessed child, Gina, a world where our people battle each other like savages? Is this how you serve God?"
"Pray with me," she says. She clasps your hands against her breasts and closes her eyes.
You pray. You pray that Three and the faithful will crush the insurrection. You pray for the wisdom to discover Gina's stratagem, and to thwart it. You observe, but are blind.
"Violence among the Cylon is an absurdity," you tell the Council. The impromptu delegates have been meeting at your behest over the days since the insurrection. You sigh, wish, not for the first time, that you don't see the wisdom of your own words. The Cavils' plan, to use Centurions to mow through the siege around the computer core and box the Six and Eight models entirely, is certainly simpler.
"Massive casualties will overload the resurrection systems," you say. "All of us could die."
Caprica still has a way of looking at you, her eyes limpid and stony as quartz. "You know our terms," she says. Sharon is seated next to her, and Caprica interlaces their fingers on the tabletop. "When you withdraw the occupying forces, we'll release the network."
"And then we wait," a Five says, "for a signal that will lead us to the human settlement?"
"The signal will come." That's a Leoben. Caprica just smiles beatifically.
"And if there's no sign from God," a Cavil says, "you agree to abrogate this crusade?"
"We do," Sharon says. She squeezes Caprica's hand.
The Cavil nods. "Very well. We accept these terms. Under threat of your brutality." He doesn't believe. You aren't so certain. If you could reach across the table and touch Caprica's skin, you would be more able to plumb her conviction. You feel, from D'Anna, the strength of Six's faith, fervent enough to span the galaxy. You wish, at D'Anna, for her to escape the fleet, before the resistance fighters return and expose her.
The Council puts their palms on the table, into the liquid interface underneath the projection, and authorizes the end of the occupation of the Colonies. The peace tastes bitter in your mouth.
As you prepare to disperse to ships, leaving your compounds behind to mark the city like tombstones, Caprica catches your arm. You turn to face her, and she's flushed with triumph.
"Thank you," she says.
"You outplayed me, Caprica," you say. "I endorsed you out of pragmatisim, nothing more."
Caprica strokes your cheek. "You don't know it yet," she says, "but you're striving toward love." In loving you will honor Me, and seek the promised land.