What a comment, almost as long as some of my chapters!
Before responding, I just have to say thank you so much for the care you put into every comment you leave for this story - I'm touched, really, that you care so much about this little corner of my imagination to spend so much time and effort responding to it.
Now on with my response.
Firstly, I have to admit that no I wasn't picturing Jackson when writing this, since the initial draft of this chapter was written before my "wish-casting", as you so aptly put it. However, I'm really flattered that his voice did come across, as that both comforts me in my "wish-casting" and shows that he is coming across as a real-person.
I love Sam Jackson, though I agree with you that it has been a while since he has played a really good role worthy of his talents. I also loved that little line in Episode II, classic Jackson and yet also classic Windu. He is the most bad-ass of all Jedi, as shown in the novel Shatterpoint (a truly harrowing Star Wars novel).
I like the comparison to Sisko, ie. being the Alpha male in the room, that so corresponds to Sisko (who is my favourite captain) and to Ba'el. I suppose part of me did have Sisko in mind when writing Ba'el, even if it wasn't conscious.
As for Ba'el's self loathing - I had not consciously thought of it that way, since I doubt if I tried I wouldn't be able to consciously write a self-loathing character, but when reading your comment I realised that that does - unfortunate as it may be for Bay - describe him pretty well. He does keep people at Bay (lol!
), except for Prin and to a lesser extent in former chapters, Commander Turner the pilot. He is carrying around a hell of a lot of baggage and is in a position where he doesn't have to hide it. Unfortunately, that makes him a difficult person to like.
No I havent' seen Jungle Fever. Your idea that Bay is addicted (or compelled) by his guilt, sadness and self-hate is probably a pretty good picture of who he is and how he lives his life. He has had to deal with a hell of a lot, to take responsibility for committing certain acts, and I think part of him feels that everything that has happened since (the loss of his wife and son, his rejection by the Federation) has been punishment for it. And yet he feels that he hasn't suffered enough.
Wow, didn't mean to spend so much time deconstructing Ba'el here! You really made me think.
IE. Dax. Yeah, I feel sorry for him as well. He's struggling to keep this under control, but it has finally gone so far. And I feel quite proud of him for having the guts to finally come clean, even thought it has come quite late in the game.
As to why you like Benjamani... Not sure. I think what she did to Ba'el and Rhodes in this chapter was way below the belt, but I'm sure I'll find some twisted reason why it was a good thing next time I write in her POV. As for bodies in her wake... Oh yeah. They're there.
Thanks again for your indepth commentary!
Thanks, glad you enjoyed it.
Yeah, Benjamani has gone below the belt there. However, like I said to Diogenes above ^^ I'm sure that next time I write a scene in her POV, there'll be some good reason why she did it! She's twisted that way!
I have to admit, I was worried about those lost days coming up now. If I ever go back and rewrite these to bring it all into line, this is one thing I would have introduced sooner. However, I think that it works just in the sense that Ba'el was so out of it back then that he didn't twig to what was happening, and there was very little time between the departure from Onyx to the attack on the Founders. So very little time to dwell on things like that.
Glad that you don't fault Ba'el for his decision. He wasn't in a good place to make it, but he really didn't have that much of a choice, not after what Dax did. Still, you are right when you imagine that Dax's story will not end here.
Yeah, Bay is having a rough time of it, isn't he? Why do I do it to him? Oh that's right, because it's fun!!!
Thanks for the comment on sickbay - has made me think of a little thing I need to add to the next chapter!
And yes, you are right, this is far from Picard's time when he could have sent Dax to Troi for counselling. Still, you'll see that something will be done for Dax and he will be getting help from an unexpected source.
Glad you liked Robau back again.
Thanks very much for the comment!