Aetheas falls into step beside Ossanlin and sighs as a gentle breeze plays across his fur. He nods as he listens to Ossanlin's assessment of what he'd just witnessed. A self-destruct would account for the sudden destruction of the ship with no forewarning.
<A self-destruct would be the coward's way out,> he speculates, then pauses. <Or the martyr's.> He notes, with some interest, that the Captain's presence seems to be making him more comfortable speaking his thoughts as time goes on. Unusual, considering his usual disdain for authority and his initial... and, admittedly, continued intimidation at the hooves of this, the War Prince Ossanlin-Rethin-Sephirel. There must be something in Ossanlin's demeanor, in his tendency to speak across to Aetheas, rather than down... though that can't be all there is to it. He'll have to self-evaluate later.
<It's... unusual to find a Yeerk who would be willing to sacrifice himself to destroy his enemies, or to protect a secret. More unusual still to find an entire group willing to go along with such an action. Most or all of those caught in the blast, Yeerk and host, were likely destroyed involuntarily.> If he feels anything relating to this, it doesn't show; his voice and his outlook remain strictly analytical. <It's possible this is a defense employed specifically by this Light... even without consent of those aboard. On the other hand, it could just have been the doing of one Yeerk.> His stalk eyes turn towards his ARC-- perhaps he can figure something out from those recordings after all.
<If we run across the Light again, it would be advantageous to know more about their capabilities and tactics than we did in this encounter.> He looks towards Ossanlin and speaks directly to him, rather than half to himself as he's been doing, <Perhaps we can supplement your feelings of risk versus reward next time.> He gives the Captain a rare, brief eye-smile.
<With your permission, Captain, I would like to contribute to the investigation of the capabilities and tactics encountered. Analysis of the data, deconstruction of the technology, questioning of the...> he pauses. Prisoners? Refugees? <...New arrivals.>