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The big story of the month is the appearance and arrest of Sluice down in sunny Tampa during a T2M/NA goodwill appearance. Shortly after Sluice's arrest, Caestus Pax offered the following statement for Project Utopia:

"The arrest of Teragen member Sylvester Macabee, also known as Sluice, was in accordance with a Tampa city ordinance that bans all members of the Teragen from the city limits. Sluice broke the law, and he must answer for it. Project Utopia has offered to provide the Tampa authorities with whatever resources it needs to ensure that this matter is handled in a fair and impartial manner and that justice is done."

The day after Sluice's arrest, Count Orzaiz, designated spokesman for the Teragen, issued the following statement:

"The arrest of Sluice in Tampa is an example of gross injustice against novas. Freedom of speech and assembly are guaranteed by the United States constitution. No one should to be persecuted for race, political affiliation, or philosophical beliefs. Sluice did nothing but appear in public and declare himself a Terat, and that was enough to put him in jail. If authorities began rounding up blacks or Jews on the same basis, there would be a public outcry, but there's been none here. Sluice's actions are an inspiration to all novas not to allow this sort of injustice to continue."

And what did the members of T2M have to say about all this? We asked some of them.

Nova·Net: Matrix, you were the first to speak with Sluice, what was going through your mind?
Matrix: I figured he was here to thumb his nose at the law. I was hoping he would just talk it up, smile for the cameras, and then go away. Most of my conversation with him was to determine his intent and to see if he would leave. In the end, he went peacefully and he earned his civil disobedience badge. I'll give him kudos for that.
N·N: What do you think of the ordinance?
M: I've been told I have no opinion it.

N·N: Gemini, what do you think of the situation?
Gemini: Sluice broke the law and we helped to bring him into custody.
N·N: What do you predict for the outcome?
G: I am sure that justice will prevail.

So, how will this all play out? Who knows, but our readers will have a better idea. Nova·Net was able to gain access for a few moments for this exclusive interview with the imprisoned terat nova. Here's what he had to say:

So, Sluice, what made you decide to come to Tampa?
The same thing that made Rosa Parks refuse to sit at the back of the bus, defiance of an unjust law.

Did T2M's appearance have anything to do with it?
Not directly, but I figured if Utopia's pet novas were going to be on hand, it would offer a chance for everyone to see whether or not they supported what the city government is doing. Their willingness to arrest me in support of an unfair law says more about where they stand than any Utopia press release.

To be fair, they didn't place you under arrest until they were deputized, and rumor is, not all of them were happy about it. The cops on the scene didn't seem thrilled with the thought of arresting you either, given your obvious power. What did you expect them to do?
I guess most people expect Team Tomorrow to do the right thing no matter what. I'm not that naïve, but it would have been a pleasant surprise if they had.

Is this part of a larger effort by the Teragen to challenge this law?
No, it was my idea and doesn't involve anyone else in the Teragen, although I think we all agree that Frederick Rupert's effort to ban us from Tampa is a fine example of baseline fear and ignorance.

Do you see this case as a way to overcome this fear and ignorance?
I don't know that it can be overcome. It's human nature to fear what they can't possibly understand or control.

What's your opinion on Proteus killing former mayor Rupert?
Proteus' methods aren't mine, but I can't say I'm sorry that a man like Frederick Rupert is dead. He was a small-minded bigot, who drew a line on the ground and defied us to cross it, like some schoolyard bully. What did he think would happen? Proteus made his point his way. I've been making my point my own way.

How have the locals been treating you?
Like they're afraid I'll vaporize them any second [laughs]. They're scared; the guards, the suits, the mayor, everybody who has to be within any distance of me at all. Still, they've treated me well enough, for a prisoner. They put me through the same process as anyone else, except for the fact that they asked me to take mox [moxinoquantimine, a drug that weakens nova powers -N·N]. I said no and they didn't push it, but we'll see how long that lasts. The simple truth is that no baseline jail can hold me, if I don't want to be held. I could blast the cell door off its hinges and walk out of here any time. The only reason I haven't is because I want to be here.

Who's your lawyer?
Kim Cortierra, a public defender appointed by the court, at my request. I asked for a public defender because I want this to be about the case, not about who can afford the lawyer with the biggest price tag.

Has Mayor Louis Reynolds or District Attorney Phillip Mathers been in to speak with you yet?
The DA met with me to offer me a deal, a way to quietly sweep this all under the rug. I told him politely what he could do with his offer.

Do you expect to take this to trial or are you willing to take a plea bargain?
I want to take this to trial so the whole world can see for itself and decide whether or not this so-called anti-Teragen law is fair. The city government and Project Utopia would like for me to just quietly go away, but I'm not going away, the Teragen isn't going away, and novas sure as hell aren't going to go away. We're here to stay, so baselines are going to have to wake up and start dealing with reality.

And what reality is that, exactly?
That not all novas are going to kowtow to Project Utopia or any baseline authority. Not only is trying to make us do it wrong, but sooner or later it's going to turn into a fight that baselines just can't win.

Will you accept whatever punishment is handed down by the court?
We'll see what the court decides.

If you are convicted, do you expect to appeal? If so, how far will you take your case?
As far as I possibly can.

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