"The Hearing" is a short dialogue written by Michael Allen Horne, originally published in the Dark Empire Sourcebook and later archived on Hyperspace.

Plot summaryEdit

The story is told from transcript excerpts from the final session of expulsion proceedings against Mako Spince, a cadet at the Academy of Carida. Participants include: senator Simon Greyshade, Chief Technical Proctor Gandl Vorkosigge, physics professor Lucinta Cal-Meg and student advisor and Academy Dean Horace Wyrmyr. The participants discuss Spince's recent destruction of the Academy's "Mascot Moon." Greyshade and Cal-Meg discuss the extent of the damage while Wyrmyr mourns the loss of the moon as the symbol of the Academy. Wyrmyr and Vorkosigge constantly put blame on Spince, who seems rather apologetic about the event. Spince assures the committee that he only used several nanograms of antimatter for the prank and took the necessary precautions. Wyrmyr then goes on to list several other of Spince's previous pranks, including reprogramming the food dispensers to produce gene samples and faking a broadcast of Wyrmyr's death during homecoming while he was on sabbatical. Cal-Meg finds humor in the latter while Greyshade attempts to bring the hearing back to order. Greyshade states that Spince's Imperial loyalties have been vouched for by both Cadet Solo and an unidentified witness under truth drugs. Greyshade sentences Spince to expulsion from the Academy and bans him from all further Imperial service, but drops all criminal proceedings due to Spince's family ties. An unsatisfied Wyrmyr states that he will appeal the sentence while Greyshade brings the hearing to a close and tells Spince to seriously think about what happened this day.


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