Ah, so that’s why Holden was so upset. It was worse than I imagined. Absolutely brutal as he hears Ade’s last gasp of breath when the unknown baddies blow up the beloved Cant. Corey sure foreshadows it by mentioning how Holden is comforted by having her breathe on the line. I find it interesting how Corey plays with the timelines as well – we learn about the beginning of Holden’s broadcast before the ship explodes. Who’s behind all of this? Holden knows that there is always money involved and Alex the pilot seems to believe it had to be something on par with Martian military. The transmitter they find on Julie Mao’s ship leads Holden to make his fateful broadcast.
What year was this book written? *Checks* 2011 – wow, a lot of prescient stuff in 2021. Of course, in a very 2350 way (I also accidentally found out the year of the Expanse when I googled it… oops). I’m having a hard time keeping straight who’s a Belter and who’s not, but these chapters helped crystallize some of the politics.
Havelock plays the role of the audience – the Earther asking what’s so bad about The Canterbury exploding – it’s far away, there’s plenty of water. He doesn’t get it, Miller lets him know. Water doesn’t fall in space. It’s precious. In addition to the water conundrum, there seems to be a ton of hostility between the inner planets and the Belt, Earth and Mars, etc. Nobody will serve Havelock at the bar because of Holden’s broadcast. He also might have to transfer to a moon of Jupiter’s because Ceres isn’t a palatable place.
We get Miller quelling a riot by telling everyone that Belters take care of their own. He also has one of the main inciters shot twice in the knee caps. (Ah, more familiar. TBF, “Shirtless” was a grade-A douchebag.) Miller being a Belter lets the crowd know that Belter’s take care of their own. Ok, so he’s a rah-rah guy. We also get his sleuth detective work when he combs through Julie Mao’s hole (I love that everyone on Ceres has a hole). My god, I was mortified when he was looking through her computer at all of the unsent drafts she had in very organized folders. I guess that’s investigative work in the age of information. At least Miller battles with the moral questions being a detective brings. That doesn’t stop him from drinking her beer.
I had the wrong read on the Holden situation last time I wrote – I totally thought he was being made to broadcast at gunpoint. It turns out that he was starting a universal incident – he is the Franz Ferdinand of the Expanse Universe. By calling out the Martian military, Holden has started an intergalactic conflict. That’s going to get you a call from HR. Holden’s crew is basically going to be headed to shackles to be questioned by the authorities. If they don’t cooperate, they are at risk of being prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law (for spreading propaganda… I think). Sheesh. Even in space 300 years from now, corporations will have all the power. I’m sure who’s ever backing the Mars military has a vested interest in keeping that planet clean. Holden makes a cool last ditch effort to save the crew by saying any effort to silence them will only further the case that it was a Martian attack. As they are about to set their course for The Donnager, they see 6 stealth ships in their way. Prediction – I don’t think they’re making it to The Donnager!