When I keep saying it's not just Gaius's trial, I mean that literally. I mean that there's no difference between the Maelstrom and what just happened, what's continuing to happen to Lee. To Chief, throwing himself again and again on the engines he built with his blood. To Laura, or Bill. To Tigh, or Sam and Tory, whatever that is. This is what it looks like from Lee's angle: daddy issues, the law against the government against the military, "Apollo" and everything he means. Zak in the background, Kara in the foreground. The rules principles he hangs onto, his very oxygen, turning in his grasp like a serpent, changing shape like fire. His father replaced by this strange lying thief. Dualla leaving in a scene or two... That's all of it, right? Everything that makes him who he is? Turn the glass a bit and you have Three, dying to be reborn -- just one fraction of an angle difference and it's the same story. Boomer, going down in a hail of bullets over some other woman's crib. Helo, who finally made it back to Galactica after a lifetime of struggles, only to find it changing shape around him every week. Kara, flying faster than she ever had before. The Admiral's Lie of Earth, in which he now believes, gone rudderless in her absence. And Laura? You bet your ass. Her more than everybody, and the hits coming from the most surprising, the most damaging places imaginable.
Act Three. Lee whispers into Lampkin's ear: "Let me do this." Romo asks "the Major," and don't think that wasn't intentional, if he's sure. Lee, looking beautiful and deadly in his lovely suit, smiles ruefully. "It's 'Mister' now. And yeah, I'm sure. It should be me." (This too, borne of his principles, his father's accusations ringing in his ears like a sound across the water: no knives in the back. Be a man.) Gaius complains that a glorified "security guard" (and don't think that wasn't intentional) will be serving however briefly as counsel; Lampkin shuts him down without even a look. "We're waiting, Mr. Lampkin," says Franks, and Lampkin introduces his "associate, Mr. Adama," who will finish the questioning. Adama spits nails; Franks allows it. This trial, I tell you what.
"Madame President, aren't you alive today because of Gaius Baltar?" She looks at him with that smile, the one that barely reaches her eyes but still comes off so soft. "I'm alive today because the insurgents managed to stop the execution." Right, from the firing squad, but: "Wasn't it Baltar who saved your life when you were dying from cancer?" The prosecution asks for relevance, and Lee begins to flounder (Bamber is fucking excellent in this scene; he always is, when he plays against McDonnell), so Lampkin mentions how Laura's a hostile witness, and asks for lenience. Adama spits actual bullets, but Franks again allows it. Lee stumbles to the point. "Um...did Gaius Baltar save your life when you were dying from cancer?" She admits that "Dr. Baltar" (and don't think her emphasis on his title -- not President, not Mister, but the thing he was at the time he was saving her -- is unintentional) and his "scientific knowledge" did save her life, indeed. Lee asks for specificity. "How did he save your life on that occasion?" The gallery is shocked into murmurs by her response: "He injected me with the blood of a half-Cylon, half-human baby." I still don't know if the Fleet knows about Hera, but I'm guessing they would, at least by the time Sharon was commissioned. They seem to have dealt with that well enough; if not, Helo's going to hurt Lee later, which will be nice. "And your cancer vanished." Completely. "During your illness, what sort of medication were you on?" She gives her best press conference grin, the one that says you and I both know and you're going to get a fight. It's her scariest grin, but in some ways her most beautiful: this is how she does warfare. This is when she's Adama's equal on the field; Athena is a goddess of tactics and strategy and justice. That smile is the schoolteacher leaving, the lioness coming in. "You know [the you little shit is implied], I was taking a lot of medications at the time, and I don't remember all their names." And did she take chamalla extract? That little hum, the little "hmph" she does, the one that means, "Here we fucking go." The one that means "another part of the world's about to fall down."