Forrest Cameranesi: Geek of all Trades

(3x11) Light of the Foundation: Part 1, Episode 2

Not knowing where else to turn, she does first attempt to get the local authorities, the robotic security team left behind by the original UN colonizing force to keep the criminal-deportee colonists in line. These robots are worryingly autonomous by modern standards, vestiges of an era before the dangers of artificial intelligence had really been properly understood and contained. They are initially unsympathetic and almost threatening to her until she tells them that she and her client are from offworld. That seems to concern them more than the assumed local crime did, and they detain her "for her safety" while they investigate.

They soon return with the news that he is being held for ransom, but that their research indicates that as a retired, childless, gay widower, it is highly improbable that anyone will pay the ransom, but that there is correspondingly low risk of offworld backlash to his death, so they intend to close the case and return Metis to her ship from which she is to leave Mars immediately. Thinking quickly, she offers to pay the ransom out of the advance her client gave her on the fee for this trip. The robot police return her to detention while they relay that offer to the criminals. On the whole she spends two nights in "protective custody" waiting for the robot police and criminals to sort the matter out, during which she dreams of the catastrophic end of the prehistoric world she's been dreaming of, and of more creepy romance with dream-Joe, which she thinks symbolizes her world falling apart and her hope that somehow he will muster the resources for her mother and him to rescue her.

On the third day, her client is returned, mostly unharmed, and she thinks that they are to be sent back to her ship now, but the robots insist that only he is being returned; they have instructions from their superiors to bring Metis to them. She is forcibly injected with a sedative, and awakens... somewhere unfamiliar, but greeted by two impossibly familar faces: the leader of the Elysian revolution, who should be long dead by now... and someone wearing the face of her other dream-uncle, Kron. Extremely confused, she asks where she is, and is told they are beneath Olympus, the lost fifth Martian colony.

The man with Kron's face is addressed as Luke by the Elysian revolutionary, but Luke in turn addresses the revolutionary as Koie, the name the man with his face from her dreams was known by. Confused that Luke is not called Kron, Luke explains that he likes the new name better, tacitly confirming that Kron was an old name of his. Both of the men act as though they are familiar with her, though they seem surprised to find her alive, implying through their questions (to which she has no answers) that they think she is some kind of science project created by Joe. They are in turn surprised that she is so hazy about the unspoken past they all seem to share together, and wonder if it is an act, an obfuscation covering up how she was obviously sent here by Joe to infiltrate them on the eve of their plans' fruition.

Metis confesses that she has no idea what any of them are talking about and begs them to please explain, but Luke and Koie are too busy realizing how useful a bargaining chip they now have in her. As if on cue, Luke receives a communication from Joe and Athena both, demanting Metis' return. When Luke tries to extract something in return for her release, Joe reminds him of the lengths he has already gone to to get Metis "back", and the further lengths he will go to to keep her safe "this time". Luke calls his bluff, but Joe is not bluffing.

The underground base shakes as though under attack from above. Luke gives unknown orders to Koie, who leaves the chamber to execute them. And in due time, Joe and Athena both appear in the chamber in person, weilding weaponry and defensive technology centuries in advance of anything Metis knows to exist. Extensible blades and shields that seem made from distortions of space itself and deformable apparently by mental command, and flying combat drones apparently controlled the same way. They cut their way into the base with their blades through the structure of the base itself. A brief nominal standoff occurs, but it seems that Luke never meant to keep Metis after all, as he gives her up without much of a fight, and then retreats. That allows Joe, Athena, and Metis to do the same: cutting a hole straight through the roof of the base to the outside, deflecting the falling debris with their shields, then remotely activating a gravitic lift up through the hole to their ship. But from his demeanor, Luke seems to feel far from defeated in this conflict.

Retreating to a ship unlike any she has ever seen, Metis has nothing but questions for her mother and Joe. First of all she wants to know how did they find her there; Joe explains that he has been tracking the whereabouts of her ship for her safety, with her mother's permission of course, and when she didn't return to it for several days, he followed up, only to find her grateful client, frustratedly stymied by the security lock-outs on the ship preventing him from flying off Mars, who recounted the whole ordeal to him.

But more importantly than that, Metis wants to know what the hell is going on here. So Joe and Athena finally sit her down and explain the truth to her. Luke really is the Kron that she has dreamt of; Joe is Kron's son, and his real name is Xio; Xio is not Metis' father, as she suspects, but rather, he was her lover, and yes also cousin; and Athena, whose true name is Aten, was not originally Metis' mother, but actually her daughter, by Xio. For they are all ancient immortals, and long before history, Kron convinced Xio to kill Metis, whose original name was Met, in a complex way necessary to circumvent the immortality that would otherwise prevent that, which left her mind trapped in his, and her body taken over by their unborn daughter, Aten. This body Metis now wears is a clone of her original body as now worn by Aten, and was carried by her like a true mother, as Metis has grown up being told; but with memories of her original life, preserved in Xio's mind, slowly reintegrated into her new mind in the form of the dreams she has had her entire life.

But this life-shattering revelation is delivered just as hidden matters with Mars reach a climax. From his base under Olympus, "Luke" has been coordinating with his four loyal brothers on a project that the rest of the immortals, now organized into a group called The Foundation (for which Jovian Corp is a front), have been trying to determine the nature of for some time now. And it seems Metis' unfortunate stumbling into things has presented Luke and his four henchmen the perfect opportunity to launch it. Even as they speak, Martian forces are moving on Earth for some unknown purpose, while Joe, who leads the Foundation, was distsracted extracting Metis from Olympus. They now have to scramble to coordinate a defense of Earth against whatever kind of attack the Martian forces intend.

But as they do so, and win against the Martians almost too easily, it turns out that that was all another feint, just like kidnapping Metis was, this time to distract from their true objective in the other direction entirely. In the outer solar system is an artificial wormhole left behind by the alien who made them immortal, one named Keius Meij. Kron's forces apparently intended all along to open it against the long-standing edict of the Foundation, who have been wary of the nonspecific alien threats that lead Keius to seal off the wormhole in the first place, many thousands of years ago. Knowing of that threat themselves but apparently not expecting to actually find it on the other side of the portal, Kron's forces immediately attack the alien ships they find upon opening it, who retaliate, pushing Kron's forces back and pouring through the wormhole into our solar system.

Next: Light of the Foundation: Part 1, Episode 3