This video opens with bright gold, scrolling lettering on a field of black:
AN OFFICAL STATEMENT FROM THE ANGEL CARTEL
The view then fades in on a gray bulkhead wall and the top few centimeters of a scuffed and marked adjustable podium, the kind found in schools with mediocre budgets across New Eden. Footsteps are heard from off-camera, and after a few seconds a military-style black beret steps up into view. The head it adorns remains hidden behind the podium and mostly off-frame, though a narrow strip of black hair peeks over the top now and again. The beret bears a crude attempt at what’s probably an Angel Cartel insignia that looks like it was cut out of a sheet of yellow construction paper by a seven-year-old and stuck in place with a deftly-applied safety pin.
The beret swivels a little to the left as a yellow balloon lifts into view, followed by a faint sucking sound. The balloon visibly shrinks. The beret turns, and addresses the camera in what might have been a girlish soprano, now raised to a literal helium squeak.
"Greetings, scum of the Summit!
"It has come to the attention of Dominations high command that a so-called ‘loyalist’ of the Angel Cartel may be engaged in acts that could be construed as displaying charity, goodwill, and generosity, and other qualities unbecoming a villain.
“Naturally, we are deeply concerned!”
The voice by the end of this statement has come down enough to be recognizably Aria’s, but she punctuates it with another hit from the balloon.
“We in the Cartel remain committed to providing only the very finest in moral turpitude, and instances such as those alleged would not only fall short of this high aspiration but suggest even the existence of moral complexity in this world! People might begin to see us as thinking, feeling beings who experience empathy and compassion for our fellow creatures!”
Another gulp from the balloon.
“THIS IS PLAINLY UNACCEPTABLE! Such actions would run directly counter to our goal of providing morally uncomplicated action/adventure melodrama in which exterminating us can be cheered as an unambiguous public good and nobody ever asks whether we’re really bad people! Deep moral questions might be asked!”
“Heroes who exterminate people by the tens of thousands cannot appear heroic unless the villains are utterly evil! IT IS NOT THE POLICY OF THIS ORGANIZATION TO BE CONSIDERED FIT MATTER FOR COMPLICATED LITERATURE! Nobody should ever ask whether a Cartel pilot was just trying to feed their family or escape poverty by advancing in the armed forces of the nation where they were born! If we are not demons, they might start to think of us as PEOPLE!”
A couple of quick, oxygenating breaths, and another gulp of the squeaky stuff.
“These ‘Aid Stations’ force us to question whether the party responsible has skinned her quota of live kittens this month. We too will be sending an inspection team, and if the investigation shows anything less than TOTAL MISERY, to include lashings, crucifixion, flaying, and the brutal beating of elderly persons with sufficient severity to GUARANTEE heroic intercession … and at least one half-eaten baby in the cupboard …”
A final gulp.
“Pilot Kalaratiri,” and two pale, diminutive hands fiercely grip the podium’s rim as the balloon pbbbbbbbts the remainder of its contents in a wandering zig-zag through the air behind her, “YOU WILL BE REQUIRED TO SURRENDER YOUR FUZZY VELVET DEVIL TAIL!”
“That is all.” A pale little fist snaps into the air. “Glory to the Cartel!”