Imagine there's no Heaven: if death were a metaphor then we'd be smarter to die already, just like Hamlet said. But our bodies cry out for life, more life, more touch, more love. Our bodies know nothing of Heaven, only of pleasure and survival. If you spend your time telling yourself that it's not really death, if you aren't pinned by the pain and burnt away by it, utterly changed, then you've cheated yourself of the gifts this death can bring you. The lies are for the living.
INTEGRITY CONFLICTS WITH THE OBLIGATION TO PROVIDE ACCESS
(The respect that makes calamity of so long life.)
They gather around the Eight, watching her die. The angry Basestar walls are red with static and confusion in the darkness. Natalie stares, sick and afraid: "It's as if she doesn't even see us anymore..." Sam knows that look, from Caprica and New Caprica after that: "She's looking past us. I've seen that look many times, but never in the eyes of a Cylon." True death. The Eight reaches out to Athena, desperate to be touched, chastened in her moment of clarity: "You were right. Forgive me." Her hand hangs in the air, dipping as the strength pours out of her. Athena reaches out, nearly touching her forgotten sister, but can't bring herself to do it. The human thing is to turn her back; the Cylon thing is to reach out, and connect. Skin to skin. She can do neither, and pulls back. Natalie is appalled.
The Eight coughs, and Sam drops to his knees, touching her face. Imagine the eyes of something infinitely merciful. Imagine his exhaustion, watching yet another death on a day meant for celebration and reconciliation. "It's okay," he says. "I'm with you." He looks into her eyes as Athena looks on, bested in compassion. And when the Eight passes on, he closes her eyes tenderly, and holds her hand. He's wearing a silver bracelet that goes round and round, like the shining waters of the Styx.
"...She will lead us to the end," Leoben says softly. "We will now know the truth of the Opera House." Natalie looks up: "The home of the Thirteenth..." Kara, who hasn't the practice of these two with the Hybrid, is confused. She doesn't speak their language. "The Hybrid said, 'The missing Three will get you the Five, who have come from the home of the Thirteenth.' The home of the Thirteenth Tribe of humans..." Kara stares. "And the Five is ... your Final Five Cylon models." Sam stares down at the innocent Eight.