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Old November 25 2010, 02:47 PM   #142
Gul Re'jal
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Location: Gul Re'jal is suspecting she's on the wrong space station
Re: ST: Shaping a Cardassian - The Shadow of the Order

Here is the ‘soundtrack’ for the Sabal scene. There’s a flash player there, you have to click o listen (sorry for the weird language, but I couldn’t find an Engish website where you can upload files for listening without a need of downloading them).

The Karama & Nadar short story is here.

Chapter 14

Cardassian Union Warship Damar
Argaya Sector near the Cardassian Union border
26-27th day of the month of Lukyut, 532, Cardassian Union Calendar

Sabal didn’t know why he came to the Obsidian Order ship. He had spent quite nice—as nice as it was possible under these circumstances—evening with Kara Takiya from the engineering and after that he had returned to his quarters.

So how come he was here now? Why did he come here?

Saratt. He went to the sleeping man and looked at him.

He had met him shortly after he had been taken to the Orias system. They had been assigned the same quarters and quickly discovered that they had more in common than just a room. They weren’t just room-mates, they became friends. Sabal remembered that Saratt loved to draw. He had a special pad, which he could plug to a computer and he used a stylus to produce most beautiful drawings Sabal had ever seen.

He looked at Saratt’s fingers—or rather what was left of them. This man would never hold a stylus in his hands ever again.

Suddenly Saratt’s eyes snapped open. Sabal jumped, startled. Saratt frowned and a growl came out of his throat. He moved his fingers, first it was barely noticeable motion but then it was obvious he stretched them only to clench them into a fist a moment later. Then he stretched them again and clenched again. The metal connections to the machine snapped torn and Saratt somehow managed to wrestle himself from the clamps that held his limbs in place.

Sabal stepped back. He wanted to ask how it was possible but he couldn’t find his voice.

Saratt sat, not taking his eyes from Sabal’s face. He slowly lowered his legs to the ground and sat on the edge of the table. His face pulled in a grimace of hatred and his eyes squinted at Sabal. He bared his teeth and licked his dry lips.

The pilot wanted to tell him how sorry he was. How much scared he was. How terrified he was that he had been so close to land on that table. But he couldn’t. His throat was tightened in a grasp of fear and guilt.

Saratt got up and slowly moved toward Sabal who walked backward, trying to keep the distance from his...friend. The lights on the bridge changed their hue to greenish and became brighter. Consoles transformed and lost their oval and irregular or triangle shapes, gaining a new, circle look. The humming of the ship changed into a kind of mechanical buzz.

A feeling of dread washed through Sabal’s body. He knew what was coming. He had never met them, never saw them with his own eyes, all he knew about them was reports and dreadful footages, but it was enough to easily recognise what was happening now. There was no escape for him, it was all over. His life was over. It was the time to pay the price. The price for what? For everything; everything that he had done and that he hadn’t done. Everything that could have been done. Every thought. Every word. Every emotion.

Saratt’s hand stretched and reached Sabal’s throat just when the pilot’s back touched the bulkhead behind him. The fingers—the horrible fingers without tips and with exposed phalanxes—tightened on Sabal’s throat just where his neck met his neck ridge, piercing the skin and sinking in his flesh.

“This should have been you,” Saratt’s voice sounded nothing like him. It was something between hissing, growling and mechanical sound of a machine. “It should have been you. Now you will serve the Union. Resistance is futile!”

Two tubules extracted from Saratt’s other hand and connected with Sabal’s left elbow, causing sharp pain.

He screamed...

...and found himself on the floor of his own quarters.

His face was covered with tears. He sat and rubbed the left elbow. Apparently he had fallen from his bed and hit the elbow against the hard deck. He crawled back to his bed but didn’t dare to close his eyes again.

He was not aware of his own sobs.

USS Karamazov
Argaya Sector near the Cardassian Union border
Stardate: 73691.2
10-11th of September, 2396, Old Earth Calendar

Asu tried to read but he couldn’t. He knew for certain that sleep was out of the question and wasn’t that surprised that reading belonged to the same group of ‘forget about it in your state of mind’.

“Do you sometimes feel like it?” Asu asked out loud. “Do you feel powerless and like a tool in someone else’s hands? How can I know if what I do is what you want?” He silenced and sipped his coffee. “Do you like coffee? Hate it? Don’t care? Did anyone ask you if you wanted to be joined with me? They asked your previous host and she said ‘yes’, but was it her opinion? Yours? Of both of you?” He rubbed his eyes. “You have given me so much. I never thanked you for all those wonderful memories. Thank you, Ronus. I hope I add to those memories and you enjoy our life together.” Another sip. “Do you?” He scratched his circle beard. “I think you like Cardassians. You. It’s your feeling, not mine. It’s not that I dislike them or hate them. I don’t know them. Asu never met any. But you were in love with one. You remember him. And now I remember him and what he was like. I through him I like them all too. Do you want to know if he had any children?” He thought for a while. No. He didn’t want to know, he was...jealous. “Am I jealous or are you? You,” he decided. “How could I be jealous if I never met him. Heck, he was a guy! I like girls.” He smiled. “But he had a nice smile, didn’t he?”

He laughed quietly. Did every joined Trill do that or was it only him? Why hadn’t he thought about doing it earlier, why hadn’t he thought of talking to his symbiont before?

“You know,” he said, absently pulling his ear, “during my zhian'tara I had a chance to meet all our previous hosts. To talk to them. To meet them and see what they were like. I wish I could meet you the same way. To talk to you. To receive your electric impulse in that mud pool and understand it.”

One of his unruly wisps of hair fell on his forehead.

“You prefer to be a girl or a boy?”

He ruffled his hair and thought that he missed long hair and hairdos he could make. She could make. It could make. Asu never had long hair.

He laughed again, louder this time.

“This is very weird when you think about it.”

Then don’t think about it. Just be.

“I am. We are. I could grow my hair long, but don’t you even think about shaving!”

His laughter died away and a sudden feeling of guilt overwhelmed him. How could he laugh and joke while that poor Cardassian man was there in pain, reduced by those damn Obsidian Order bandits to a mere piece of equipment!
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