"You said it yourself, Admiral. That thing may be headed toward Earth. If it jumps away, then we'll lose our only hope of taking it out." And it will pervert the future, as well as the past. War will never loosen its grip, and we will never become simply human again. Starbuck gets through the jams, and the Adamas sigh in relief, launching the evac Raptor. Down on the ship, the detonator's complete shot. Kendra asks if Matthias can rig a manual trigger, and she can; Kara still can't even see what a razor is. Why would you do that? How do you blow up a manual nuke so everybody lives? You don't. "We are completing this mission. Am I clear, soldier?" Kara feels a chill; it's clear. "Our nuke's remote detonator is still fried. We're gonna have to cook it off by hand. Red 1 is still down for the count. Which doesn't give us many options."
On Pegasus, she's crackling on the wireless: "What are your orders, sir?" Apollo comes up with another plan: get the team off the ship with the evac bird, and then fire the missile that's burning in his pocket. But Adama sees the problem: the squad of Guardian Raiders: they'll intercept the bomb. There's no option, it's Cain's Law: somebody has to stay and arm the warhead, and set it off. Adama makes it clear that he's done meddling for today, because this is a big decision, a decision for a Commander. Which increases the pressure on Lee, of course, and where he's standing, in Pegasus's CIC, swallowing tears, there's only one answer. There was only ever one answer: "Pegasus actual. Get the XO, get your men and get to the evac coordinates. Secure your men, and detonate the warhead using the manual trigger. Complete your mission, Captain." Kara nods, turns to stone; lifts Shaw in her arms and heads toward the airlock.
Kara ushers everyone into the airlock, to get their suits on and leave for the pickup; she shoulders the nuke and shouts at Kendra, who's failing fast. Who has a gun, trained on her head. "You too, Captain. Leave the nuke, if you don't mind." Her chin up, back strong, as the life fades out of her. Kara whispers, "What the frak are you doing?" And Kendra tells her the answer she already knows: "Completing the mission." She smiles and tosses Kara the knife: "Take it. I don't need it anymore." And one day, Kara will. "Why?" asks Kara, and Kendra can't handle the innocence there, at all: "You know damn well why." And we hope she never will, but we know that's not true. She takes the nuke and sends Kara out, locking the door behind her. Kara looks through the glass at her, and salutes; Kendra salutes back. "It's been an honor, Captain." Kara begrudgingly puts on her helmet. Kendra is alone. Kendra heads in, lugging the nuke, getting weaker. As the lights fade and brighten around her, she sees the bodies of the Scylla, in tighter and tighter shots. I mean to say the panoply of death restricts itself now, at the end of story, into people. Not assets or civilians or rioters or proof: just people, with hands and faces. The Hybrid speaks, like the voice of God, reverberating through the ship: "All this has happened before and will happen again." Kendra aims her gun at an open door. "Come in, Major. I've been waiting for you for a long time."