Public Ignorance by Candi Gomez
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Story Notes:
Are all the Vorak androids? Or is that just really good publicity to keep a world united in war?

I wonder what they’d do if they knew.

The Vorak do use androids. That’s why we carry feather stunners and other devices to bring them down. And as far as the public knows, that’s all they use.

But we know. We know.

Androids are always used off of the Vorak bases. They can endure faster and longer travel, and don’t require the amenities that flesh-and-blood people do. Because of that, they’re the ones civilians see. When the latest mech is destroyed, metal bits and computer chips are spread around, not burnt meat and bone.

It’s different when we take out a base.

There are real people working in those bases: soldiers, scientists, laborers. All working for the Vorak.

I’m not sure why. In some places on this world, things are so bad that people will take any means they can to survive. But others… they have choices. They’re not worth the Vorak’s time to pursue; they don’t have the skills, or education, or whatever, that the Snakes want. But they still join up.

Which means fighting real people. Real blood splashing on the floor; real muscle and bone tearing and snapping. When the charges go off, not just metal shreds.

The media has criticized the Global Security Council for instituting ‘media blackout’ over former Vorak bases until they are cleaned up. Those reporters want to know what’s being hidden. They might change their minds if they actually knew.

Dr. Keane has explained to us –repeatedly- why the public must be kept in the dark. Evil alien robots are easy to hate; if it was known that humans were working for the Vorak, some parts of the public might start to sympathize with them. That could start a cascade of events that could end in withdrawal of support from the war by influential and wealthy people and nations. It’s important that the world be united against these terrorists. He’s probably right.

But that doesn’t make me feel any better.


Ollie finished checking out the repairs to the Horned Tank. Checking the clock, he realized it was almost time for a group counseling section. He wondered if he should mention his thoughts of the past half-hour.

Talking about the killing never made him feel any better.

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