Apollo stood before the massive, ornate doors of The Hero Alliance Cathedral. There the council debated the fiasco at the Naval shipyard, Apollo stared at the 8 foot high statues of past heroes and feared he may never see himself remembered in this sacred hall. He lost himself as he followed the clean lines of brushed aluminum, gold plate, and crimson arches of the hall. He admired the skillful placement of lights, that illuminated the statues so that it appeared that there mere presence in massive colored quartz gave the hall it's bright and warm light.

The doors opened with the sound of the heavy lock disengaging and Fist, Sniper, and Sakura exited. Sakura gave Apollo a wary smile as she approached him, "They want to see you now" Apollo gave a deep sigh, "I know" she gave him a forced smile, "You'll be alright Apollo" he put his hand on her shoulder, "I hope so," as he brushed past her Apollo gave his friends a half smile and entered the cathedral. The clean lines of the hall ended at the door replaced by the medieval style vaulted ceilings and dramatic arches in white stone. In the center was an amphitheater with the six council members perched above a platform with a steel and glass desk and high-back chair, behind the platform was seating for spectators, which was bare except for several government observers and a few heroes, several he knew but was worried because his known allies were in the minority.

Apollo has observed tribunals before, but never participated in one, so he knew the drill and made his way to the platform, and stood beside his chair as the council stood, "Apollo, you stand before this council today to give your testimony on the events of May 1st, 2015. We will begin." Spoke Council Chairman Prometheus in his usual booming voice, it was obvious the room was wired with hidden microphones and amplified, but he knew from previous experience, that for the chairman, it was not needed. The council members sat and Apollo did also, "Apollo," Council Member Siren spoke in her very feminine tone, "According to your report, you spread a company of marines across the base with yourself, Sakura, and Fist in the rear with Sniper providing support. Is that correct?" Apollo sat straight, "That is correct, with the vague information I had I felt it was prudent to anticipate several angles of approach." She glanced at her terminal hidden from view by her pedestal seat, "I see," An image appeared on the room's holographic array showing a the 12 walkers with there countless escorts of flyers just as they came from a far hill, "As you are aware these are the destroyer walkers that attacked the base, what went through your mind when you saw this sight?" Apollo stared at the 6 foot projected image, "I knew I'll most likely fail my mission" the council raised there eyebrows, obviously his answer wasn't what they expected, "And yet you resisted?" said Council Member Argos, he was new to the council, and Apollo suspected he has a lot to prove, "Yes, I had lives to consider, and running away might cause more damage, and more lives to be lost. Considering Cork Screw's history." Apollo answered with stern confidence, but he was met with cool gazes. Argos brought up another image of the tank company burning in the field, "Did you consider these lives?" his tone was cold giving emphasis to the morbid picture, He wants to destroy me. Apollo thought as he took a deep breath, "They were not under my command, and my comm record will show I attempted to warn them off. They refused to listen, and foolishly followed there orders, with fatal consequences." Apollo made a point of his own, but an Army observer behind him wasn't amused.

Argos picked up on that, "Yet you knew they will die, and did nothing to protect them!" Dirty bastard playing politics like that, Apollo thought, but he held his tongue, "I couldn't help them in time, and even if I could've been there before they fired, there were thousands of Flyer drones. No hero could've stopped that many." Argos gave a subtle smile, "But you could have saved a few." Bastard, he held his gaze on Argos, if only he had laser vision, "Perhaps one if I was extremely lucky" Argos pushed the point, "But there was a chance, ill be it a slim one, correct?" Apollo stared sternly into Argos' cocky smirk, "A very slim one, yes."

Siren, tired of Argos' obvious play at Army sympathy, cleared the main holo-display, "Enough, the interference by the Army is not the point of this investigation. It is clear that Apollo did what he could under the circumstances, what is the purpose of this hearing is to compile the facts to see the truth, and how to prevent such incidents in the future." Argos relented and sat back in his plush chair. Prometheus brought a video summarizing the attack on the holo-display, the approach of the walkers, the tanks exploding, Fist facing the full force of a particle laser beam to protect the EMP, Apollo destroying a walker, and so on. "What is disturbing to me is how organized and precise  the assault was," Prometheus boomed, "Tactics clearly far out of character for Cork Screw, and not to mention his video release," the video changed to Cork Screw's video announcement, "This video was broadcasted globally, an ability he has never shown in his past skirmishes with the alliance." The room was deathly quite for a moment, Prometheus' booming voice echoed through out the large hall. Apollo felt relieved, it seems most of the council reconized the hopeless situation he faced that day.

The hearing continued for several hours as the council picked apart every detail and decision of that day, but Argos pushed another point regarding Apollo's obsession of the missing villains, and there possibility of them joining forces. Argos spun it as a conspiracy theory, which Apollo was unable to protest, he did his best to defuse Argos' attacks on his character, but any out right protest would've weakened his position further, and Apollo vowed he would give the cocky bastard as little ammunition as he possibly could. When it was over Apollo exited the cathedral exhausted, Sakura woke from napping on the bench outside the doors, "Apollo! How did it go?" she asked a little worried, he just toke a deep breath, "Fine, I had to fight Council Member Argos all the way, but I'm still in good standing with the elder members." She lit up with the news, "That's great! The others returned to the dorms already, you hungry?" Apollo gave a genuine smile, "Starving" they walked together down the massive hall and toward the mess hall.
 


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