V: Four Funerals
Laura lights the Scrolls of Pythia one page at a time, with a fireplace lighter. She turns the pages, looking at them for the last time, back to front, lighting them as she goes. She is sitting on the floor, sitting where she dropped when she got home and grabbed the book that killed her. Bill enters their quarters without knocking, because it is his home, too. "We gotta do something. Morale is going down the toilet... What are you doing?"
Burning off what doesn't work anymore. "Pythian prophecy?" he asks, and sits down by her side. This is a world ending; this is another wall falling down. "Cottle told me that you didn't show up for your doloxan treatment," he says gingerly, and she admits it's true. "Do you want to tell me why?" She keeps turning pages: "I didn't feel like it." Bill urges her back, trying to hold all the pieces at once: "You're gonna reschedule..." She quietly tells him he's wrong; she's preoccupied and barely there. "Laura, you need your treatments," he says, almost begging; she assures him that she doesn't but she won't meet his eyes.
"What are you doing?" he whispers. "You're just gonna... lie down and quit? You're the one who made me believe in this..." The worst thing he could have said. Her worst hubris, out loud, piercing her heart. She is ashamed; she turns back the tide. "You shouldn't have listened to me. When the Cylons first attacked, you should've held your ground and kept fighting. Because I was wrong. I was wrong about everything." She watches the pages burn; in her mind she sees them burning. "And all those people who listened... And they trusted me, and they followed me, all those people..." She nods to herself, agreeing with a litany that's been repeating itself in her heart since Earthfall: "They're dead." He reaches for her, terrified, and she pushes him away.
"Don't. Stop. Stop." Even weeping, she can't look at him; she will fall apart. "Don't touch me." She begs him to leave, voice cracking, and his heart breaks. She keeps lighting pages as he stands to go, unable to help, unable to see his way past this, to help her to the next thing, too caught up in his love and her pain to do anything but what she says.
She turns the pages, back from the end to the beginning. From the Temple to the Altar she turns them, burning them one by one. Weeping, watching dreams die one by one, like the stars going out. "Burn," she sobs, tears lit by fire, on the floor of their quarters where she fell, when she couldn't walk anymore. "Burn."