Quis custodiet ipsos custodes

There’s an old question that Cassandra should have considered more closely.

Quis custodiet ipsos custodes?

Who will watch those who watch? Who watches the watchmen?

For the past few years Julian had been her right hand. At first she had kept him there so she could be the one that watched him as he watched the organization. But lately she’s been comfortable with the level of care he takes and she was willing to let him do his job unwatched. Which was fine. Until Wes attacked Cylee, that is. She had started to suspect that Julian’s loyalties were somewhat divided, but everything she could see showed that he was just doing his job as he had always done it.

That’s because Julian was better at hiding his tracks than Cassandra was at uncovering them. So that’s part of the answer: if you’re going to watch the watchmen, be sure you’re a better watcher than they are.

Julian had been gathering information, which was easy when you knew where to look. He now knew where the cloning facility was, and he knew where Wes was being treated for his wounds. He knew Cassandra’s plans, and now that he was less devoted to her cause his blood ran cold as he considered what she was planning.

He also knew who new Pacifica was working for.

One of the only things the Dissolution had going for it was that nobody had ever used 'banned' weapons. No fission, no fusion, no biological agents that would poison fellow citizens for decades. By these 'rules' of war, old Pacifica’s clones were fine. They were just people. Humans who had been conditioned to be good soldiers. The fact that they looked young (and were very young) was a miscalculation, and now clones had been added to the 'banned' list.

If new Pacifica was willing to break one ban, what was to stop them from breaking all of them?

And now Julian was planning something new. He wasn’t at all sure he’d survive it, but everyone else would. Sabotage is such an ugly word, Julian thought, but sometimes it was needed.

For the past few days Julian had been working on finding Cylee, but he knew where she was going and he could get there faster. His other task was using the fact that all the computers trusted him to make sure they would never be able to do the things their masters wanted them to do. It’s easy to drop kill switches here and there if you know what you’re doing and the computer believes you are supposed to be doing it.

Two days in he discovered that someone else had been through the system with the same end in mind. He made a mental note to find out who this “Jubal” was, but other than that, he figured any help he could get was a good thing.

Julian made one more pass, checking all his traps. The fissile material creation system would consistently turn out unstable product and might just blow itself up in the process, but at no point would it produce weapons-quality material. The small, independent cell of insurgency creators were told to head into Texicali instead of Bonneville. Julian reasoned that Texicali was already as unstable as it was going to get, and this team was going to be in deep cover for at least two years, so he was safe there.

The last one was the biological agents. There was really only one way to stop that one, and it was in person. Fortunately that lab was close to the cloning lab—they were working together on a number of projects—and he was headed that direction anyway.

Quis custodiet ipsos custodes?

Julian knew the answer. He did. Sometimes you have to watch those outside of the organization, to protect the organization from its enemies. But sometimes you need to protect the rest of the world from your organization. The high calling of ipsos custodes was to know the difference.