- Exec. Director Hugh
Introduction from the Reclamation Project's Executive Director
A Letter for Readers of The Ohniaka III Project from Exec. Director Hugh
Before I begin this letter in earnest, I must tell the reader now that former Borg do not often prefer speaking for other former Borg. As principle, we value individual thoughts and voices in the highest regard, and even revel in declaring this sentiment to others upon introduction.
With this pre-amble concluded, to the xBs that visit this Archive: I thank you for allowing me this opportunity to speak for us regarding our people, our intents, and our livelihoods.
And to those untouched by the Collective and wish to learn more about the Liberated Borg Cooperation, the Reclamation Project, and the xBs who claim Ohniaka III as their home: welcome.
May spontaneity guide you, agency lead you, and clarity wizen you.
Perhaps you are surprised at the verbal eloquence already in this letter, coming from an xB. Individuals who, upon their first instances of Reprisal, can hardly speak or choose words without the Collective's sudden, near-painful absence. I tell you in earnest; it took many years for me to be able to speak the way I am able to now.
xBs are a people of paradoxes.
We take unity in that fact we have all come from a singular, traumatic Oppressor that bound us to a half-life of collective consciousness. This is our common factor. This is what binds us as xBs. We were once many, we were once each other, and now we are not. The augments that litter our skin, the implants that can be shed, replaced, repaired, and even removed; this is the common factor, the unity- that we carry as individuals.
Yet in that common factor, in that unity, we find fractals of our experiences. Divergences. Variations, in our emergence from the Collective. "Divergence, variation, fractals:" these are all words the Collective hates, in relation to itself. It will gladly take lives and societies these three words embody and add to the Collective's own mass, certainly, but never apply it to the billions of bodies it inhabits and utilizes. But we, xBs, are are all separated differently, speak differently, and yes: even act differently. What a joyous sensation it is to explore the self and discover habits, likes, dislikes, and yes: even words, in the comfort and camaraderie of those like us.
We find comfort in the company of those who share our past trauma, yet delight in the people we are now. This, eternally, is the mission of the Reclamation Project: to give xBs a new beginning in this life guided by those like them, and to let them live as their whole selves in the Cooperation.
The Reclamation Project's motto is a simple one: "Know Thyself." It is to compliment the Cooperation's motto: "Individuality's Needs, Community's Many;" for one must know themselves (at least partially) before being flung into the sometimes-overwhelming world of individuality: of singular life as we know it now rather than the mass of the Collective.
I recall a specific phrase from my speech given at the Atlas Project's Midway Gala opening ceremony eight years ago to a mostly Federation/Starfleet audience. I will allow myself the indulgence to repeat it here, in writing, with the hope of leaving you with the same optimism I had then:
"I am no longer Third of Five, and yet I carry him with me every day of my life. For I have learned not to rue what I once was; instead, I celebrate what I have become, in spite of the drone I once was. Every xB you meet is no longer part of the Hivemind they were once taken or subjugated to be. They are, instead, a person; an individual, just as any sapient being experiences life and learns from it. And those individuals who gather together, in clarity-given agency and free will, to help others like ourselves become their own individual: that is what the Reclamation Project is. We strive to ‘Reclaim’ what was taken. Reclaim lives, personalities, existences, homes, families; and it is a ‘Project:' because our work has no definitive end. Just as we ourselves are, forever, works-in-progress. It shall be a ‘Project’ so long as the Cooperation exists, so long as the Collective may exist: and so long as there are those who will resist against it."
These words, despite their age, remain true, and unfortunately we must continue to remind those who visit us or interact with us these same basic principles.
I offer you a parable that we have begun to speak. "Start, from your beginning, like all xBs do; wherever that beginning may be." No matter what their lives may have been before the Hivemind, all former Borg have a point of beginning, once severed from the Collective; it is when their lives begin in earnest. So too do adventures, endeavors, people, and stories all have beginnings, and I am merely grateful to welcome you as you begin your journey into learning more about us.
We wish you peace. We wish you prosperity. We wish you see us as no longer Borg.
Most of all, we wish to live. And that, above all, is treasured beyond all words to those who did not truly live before.
-RECLAMATION PROJECT EXEC. DIRECTOR HUGH letter published Stardate 76006.62