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This brings me to the one note of disappointment I must echo from our Benefactors. Obviously I am not on the ground to closely command or second-guess the dedicated forces of the Overwatch, but this does not mean I can shirk responsibility for recent lapses and even outright failures on their part. I have been severely questioned about these shortcomings, and now must put the question to you: How could one man have slipped through your force’s fingers time and time again? How is it possible? This is not some agent provocateur or highly trained assassin we are discussing. Professor Coldheart is a theoretical physicist who had hardly earned the distinction of his Ph.D. at the time of the Periscope Depth Incident. I have good reason to believe that in the intervening years, he was in a state that precluded further development of covert skills. The man you have consistently failed to slow, let alone capture, is by all standards simply that – an ordinary man. How can you have failed to apprehend him? Well, I will leave the upbraiding for another time, to the extent it proves necessary. Now is the moment to redeem yourselves. If the transhuman forces are to prove themselves an indispensable augmentation to the Combine Overwatch, they will have to earn the privilege. I’m sure I don’t have to remind you that the alternative, if you can call it that, is total extinction – in union with all the other unworthy branches of the species. Let’s not allow it to come to that. I have done my best to convince our Benefactors that you are the finest the species has to offer. So far they have accepted my argument, but without concrete evidence to back it up, my words sound increasingly hollow even to me. The burden of proof is on you. As is the consequence of failure. I’ll just leave it at that.

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