Earth Date: 27th March 2241
Log: Agent Amanda Forrester
Location: Planet Verius VI
It’s been 16 months since my last dispatch.
I’m happy to announce that unrest has arisen in Restart but I fear things have not turned out the way I envisioned on Verius VI. As I had believed, the council of Earth Return was very slow in implanting any changes to end discriminations against women in Restart. Their fears of a Federation agent were just too great.
Seeing the lack of progress, EOR staged a series of protests at the Government Capsule. At first everything went well as more and more women joined our protest and the council came under increasing pressure to give in to our demands.
We protested daily for over 3 weeks before things went bad. At the last protest we held, a few of the protestors began throwing missiles at the security forces. It was something unusual as the protests had always been peaceful up to then.
At first I wasn’t displeased. No progress had been achieved, and I believe it was a sign that the frustration of several women had boiled over. Several other members of EOR tried to calm things down but they were unsuccessful.
Small stones and garbage were thrown at security; this made things a little uneasy but it was still peaceful. Then a brick was thrown, and the guards had enough. They stormed the protesters and start beating up protesters with their batons. Many of the protestors were arrested and the council immediately ordered a security sweep of the city for all EOR leaders. I was captured along with several of the leaders.
There was a quick show trial for the public and all leaders of EOR were charged with endangering public safety and sentenced between 6 to 24 months hard labor. I was sentenced to 12 months as I was one of the original leaders of EOR but it was ruled that I wasn’t one of the leaders involved in the riots. It was a vast over-reaction to what had been a series of largely peaceful protests, but the council pushed through the sentences and there wasn’t much anyone can do about it.
Before this, Restart never had a serious problem with crime. This was especially true for female criminals. A new building was hastily constructed to house all the new female prisoners and I could even smell the drying paint as I entered the building.
We were strip-searched as we entered the prison and given prison uniforms. It was a plain calf-length dress which was dark blue in color, a pair of soft leather shoes and a white bonnet to cover our hair.
Despite the sentence of hard labor, the council clearly did not know what to do with us and for the first 3 weeks, there was nothing to do. The food was good and it was comfortable within the prison. It was actually very boring, but everything changed at the end of the first month.
I noticed a change in the guards and all of the prisoners were brought to the courtyard where the new warden announced that there was a new regime in charge at the prison. We were all warned to obey all the guards at all times or heavy punishments would be handled out.
We soon got a taste of the new regime when we returned to our cells. Our soft mattress was gone and was replaced by a straw mat. The next day, we were marched out of the prison to our worksite outside the city. The guards locked a collar on all the women and they chained the prisoners in pairs by a steel chain. We were also given a new form of bonnet that came with a peak. The peak covered the entire front of the bonnet, from one chin over the forehead and down the other side of the face. It immediately reminded me of the bonnet women of the Veritas group were wearing and I later discovered that I was right. The council of Earth Return had allowed the Veritas group to take over the prison.
With the guards looking on to prevent any escape, we were marched from the prison to the worksite with the whole city looking on. I’m sure this was done to embarrass the women and the tactic worked well. As we were marched across the city, more people came to see the prisoners who were in collars and chains, and many of my fellow prisoners kept their head down throughout the journey.
As the population of Restart got bigger, there was always a need to clear the surrounding areas of vegetation. On most other planets, construction companies would bring in heavy machinery and just dig up all the vegetation, cart them away and dump them somewhere else. Not here on Verius VI!
Ever mindful of doing harm to the local ecology, here on Verius VI they would dig up the trees and replant them at a new location. Great care is taken not to destroy the roots of the trees and for this delicate job of clearing soil without hurting the roots; everything had to be done by hand.
Connected collar to collar, we worked in pairs to clear the soil of the trees. It was hard work made worse by the fact that most of the women were unused to manual labor. The guards however were carrying canes made from the wood of the local trees and they were more than willing to use them on any women found ‘lacking in effort’. Most of the guards were young, some were just teenagers, and they were just looking for some excuses to use the canes. I was struck several times across my back. The fact that members of the public were allowed to view us working also added to the humiliation.
However when the work was done, something happened that surprise the hell out of me. All the prisoners were resting when a Mind-Runner showed up. As we were technically outside the boundaries of Restart, seeing a Mind-Runner wasn’t that surprising but what this Mind-Runner did was.
Language had always been a huge problem for humans in our age of space colonization and it is the same here on Verius VI. Mind-Runners and humans are different species from different planets and it has been reported that the Mind-Runners are biologically incapable of producing any human speech. Although they do understand the English language, Mind-Runners can only communicate with humans via the mind-pictures.
You know how sometimes when you see two persons in a distance, and you can just tell they are speaking to each other. This was exactly the case here. The Mind-Runner and the guard were speaking to each other.
Even though the human guard never spoke a word; from their body language, I could clearly tell that they were communicating with each other. Could it be possible that some humans in Earth Restart, like the Veritas group, had gained telepathic abilities?
I have just been release early for good behavior and I am living with a couple I had befriended in Restart. Any woman released early has to be placed under the “care” of a man and Glenn had agreed to be my “overseer” for the time. I had known Glenn Lively and Jennifer Cahill on the trip to Verius VI and I do not believe it will be a problem for me to hide my status as an agent from the two of them.
I have noticed that there are many changes within Restart since my release and will try to find out more about what’s going on in the city. However my main priority will be on the Veritas group and whether some humans in Earth Restart had gained telepathic abilities.