So we’ll be back to Naomi & Kally in time, but I did want to take a detour here to check in with Central, as there’s quite a lot of moving pieces there that are a collision course with the main story (as one may expect). I didn’t even up showing Arron speaking the commission, because largely that was a summary of events we’ve seen in the comic. In a time where I had more time, a summary of the events so far via Arron would actually be an interesting idea to show, but I don’t know if I think it’s worth a few weeks of pages at our current rate.

Undersecretary Minerva Saywood is a character we’ve seen a few times, and someone that works with Arron somewhat, but is not part of the IDS. She’s a relatively important person, but as part of the Executive Bureaucracy theoretically neutral in the power struggles, though they have their own divisions, though despite that she tends to show fairly clear favoritism toward Arron. She is also the person that would largely be involved in the relocation efforts; for those that need a refresher, Central was trying to relocate people from a failing habitat to Malsa, and Malsa (with the influence of Peter) has suddenly offered to take in 40,000 citizens. Arron views this as sort of hostage situation, as it would make using something like the Skyhammer (or any overwhelming military force) vastly less palatable to Central if there were tens of thousands of their own people that’d be caught in the crossfire (and, of course, that is probably something not lost on Malsa, let alone Peter). The details of Malsa’s offer isn’t clear, but the IDS is largely against it (one of the few things Arron and Biana would both agree on… though for different reasons). But the political machinations around this are complicated, as they’d be hard pressed to block it publicly, and there may other pieces now moving on that board (such as the Civil Service… which has strangle become involved in this, getting their foot in the door of interdimensional matters, something they theoretically have little jurisdiction over, as they are stepping up to assist with the relocation… after all, they are the ones trying to mitigate the failing habitat many of the people would come with).

…basically everyone is suspicious of the motivations of everyone else, but as with most of Peter’s Malsa’s plan, the plan largely only involves in parties acting in their own self interest – the Civil Service wants a hook into Interdimensional Affairs, the Executive Bureaucracy wants meet their quotas relieve public pressure (exacerbated by the overdue and suddenly in doubt Bridgepoint project having trouble) which seemed all but lost before this golden ticket showed up, and the IDS cannot easily unify against it because if one side did public come out against it, the other side would throw them under the bus by supporting it and taking the public opinion high ground.

We’ll see more of Arron’s views and opinions in the next page.