November challenge winning entry: To betray in deepest consequence
“On the other hand, they are just as likely to convince you to betray us!” Weyoun sneered.
Legate Broca, formally of the Third order, son of the legendary Gul Herok Broca and now the leader of the glorious Cardassian Union, had picked a odd moment to have a sudden epiphany.
This isn’t going the way I thought it would. Perhaps the alliance had not been the best of ideas and it should have been someone else here today. What do I do now?
Broca knew that he had a reputation for a certain lack of intellectual rigour and that he was considered to have coasted on his families long and stalwart service to the Union, riding his father’s coattails into a Gulhood but he had also saw himself as a loyal and solid solider for whom authority was naturally obeyed. As he had been an efficient staff officer and maintained correct contact with his immediate superiors his passage to the dizzying heights of central command had been assured without the dangers of combat and the attendant risk of death.
It just made sense to him that the Union needed those with the ability to take the long route and see the bigger picture; after all, anyone could command a Galor
It was only now that Broca could see just who he really was; a gutless coward so obsessed with maintaining his position and perks that he had allowed himself to become a pathetic puppet who was horribly complicit in the brutal murder of over two million of his fellow Cardassians.
They are first son, before power, honour or any glory. We are Cardassians, it is our privilege and our duty to serve and protect them from all enemies, at any cost. Do not let any baubles and useless titles sway you from that righteous goal.
You are a Cardassian my son. Now go and be that Cardassian that I know you can be...
With his father’s final words ringing through his head, Enbak Broca made his decision and became a Cardassian once more.
It was just a simple word. Oft misleading to so many and yet here delivered with the upmost sincerity. Unfortunately for the Founder and her Dominion lackeys, irony was not added to their genetically engineered souls. It was a mistake that would cost them dearly.
Weyoun smirked in that irritatingly self satisfied way of his and turned towards his god. “You see, we can trust Broca, he has always been most
Before the vorta could continue his smug patronizing speech, the Legate made his move.
There are many things that could and have been said about the sentient beings that originated from Cardassia Prime, the conniving ruthlessness, rampant arrogance and overt pomposity to name but a few and yet amongst all of those there was one salient fact often ignored.
When seriously riled a Cardassian was a truly deadly killer.
The Klingons had their Brak’lul
, the Jem’hadar where born soldiers and even the humans when placed into a dangerous situation could become fearless warriors, but the Cardassians had one rare advantage that trumped all others.
In times of great stress or combat the Cardassian body could force itself to undertake great feats of physical strength and dexterity for a short period. The Humans, who had a paler version of this ability, call it adrenaline but the Cardassians had no name for it, simply due to the very rarity of its occurrence.
Whatever it was, Broca put it to very good use. He moved with a startling economy of grace, lunging directly at the closest Jem’Hadar, yanking his plasma rifle out of his hands and with a swift pivot, firing two deadly bolts into both spindly faced minions, killing them both. It had happened so fast that even the genetically engineered reflexes gifted onto two of the Founders finest were lamentably unable to react in time to save their own lives.
Weyoun watched the bodies hit the floor and as his world came crashing down around him, there was only one thought cascading down his terrified soul. No, this should not be happening. I did not see that...
His ruminations found themselves rudely interrupted by the full force of Broca's weapon slamming into his jaw, knocking him unconscious with a sickening crunch and sending the last clone of the celebrated Weyoun line crashing ingloriously to the hard cold surface of the Central Command.
Broca could barely think at the time but even then, as he turned his weapon toward the hapless Founder, he had to wonder just why he had decided to keep the irritating little Vorta alive...
For her part, the being known as the Founder Leader had finally found herself in the exact position that the Great Link had always feared, the scenario that drove them to create the Dominion and to impose their own permanent peace across the galaxy, a drive that had brought her here to this violent solid and her own ending, at which she was her own nemesis. The milliseconds seemed to pass like days for the decaying shapesifter as the being who was worshiped as a god across half a galaxy faced a brief eternity at the end of one of her own weapons.
Unable to change appearance due to the crippling disease and isolated from her loyal servants, the supreme commander of the mighty Dominion had just one last card to play.
Begging for her life.
The Founders pleas were curtailed by the inarticulate roar of the temporarily insane Cardassian as he turned the rifle on the being that had caused his people all this pain and suffering, who had forced him to condone the massacre of his fellow Cardassians and through her people’s interference, had destroyed Cardassia’s vitality and strength.
He fired dozens of high energy bolts into the ruined husk of the Founder never stopping until the floor itself was blackened and ruined, all the while screaming with all the pent up rage and self loathing that had been boiling up within him though the years.
Suddenly Legate Broca came down to Prime as the murderous lust left his body, forcing him to stagger over to the main communication console and use its weight to keep himself in a manageable standing position. He looked around the bunker seeing the dead bodies strewn across the floor and the pile of ash representing the mortal remains of the founder in an incredulous trance.
Broca slowly recovered from his excursion into madness and he began to realise the full force of what he had done. Not these murders, which had become for him an exercise in self preservation and a cathartic release, but the wretched entirety of his misbegotten life.
Every act of sniveling, toadying, cowardly misdemeanors and embarrassing failure haunted him. Every time he had betrayed confidences for his own short term gain and hidden on the Homeworld whilst others had fought and died for his safety. Disgust gripped him and he directed the barrel directly at his worthless face, fully intending to commit a final act of redemption.
That was when he happened to glance at the displays dotted around the command bunker.
The battle in throughout the Cardassia system still raged on with the Federation Alliance being joined by the revolting Cardassian Fleet. Meanwhile, on Cardassia itself millions of Jem’hadar and their new Breen allies awaited instructions from the Founder...
That’s when it hit him.
Yes, so you’ll never be a warrior, with the same glory that your father had. But you’re not him; what you are is Enbak Broca, aide, organiser and bureaucrat.
A slow smile spread across his face as he leaned over the console and got to work...