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Old June 30 2011, 07:08 AM   #4
Nerys Ghemor
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Location: Cardăsa Terăm--Nerys Ghemor
Re: June Contest Entry: "And Tomorrow I Shall Light the Flame"

Well...as you know, while I don't have that experience in my life, I deeply identify with Russian literature. Very much so. I'm not surprised that showed up; I tend to see my Cardassia as less "Nazi" and more "Stalinist." To the point where my Lakat is a somewhat more temperate-climed version of Leningrad (I know it's now St. Petersburg; I used that name for a reason). I suspect at that particular point, it was Solzhenitsyn that was foremost in my mind.

And yes...Yejain was deeply shocked. He is a very traditional man with a very strong hierarchical instinct (very much in contrast to the unconventional Berat and his attenuated instinct). He is also what my Cardassians call cirdasutlebre--a person who forms deep personal loyalties to a leader in his life. He does not aspire to command so much as he does to following a worthy leader.

Berat knows "normal" Cardassians don't talk the way he does, but yes...he firmly believes he's right. Yet by the standards of many other Cardassians, he is broken. Defective. Not just in the sense of his physical disability but the shattering of his trust. (He can trust people on a personal level, still--he's not lying when he says he trusts Macet. But not on a political one.) The automaticity of his hierarchical instinct. (He does still have one, though.) Personally, I do not think his views are extreme and at least in America I think he'd find good company--but by Cardassian standards, they are.

And yes...Berat is very aware of the fact that deposing the Dominion wouldn't be the end. He's seen bad transitions of power three times now. (The Detapa Revolution is actually not counted among those...that circumstance was different in Sigils but there was never time to see how or if it would've paid off.)

You're also right that he doesn't know what to do after the Dominion is kicked out. Do remember this is 7 months before what you see in The Thirteenth Order, though. He has a lot of time to think about it and discuss it with others; he doesn't want to be alone in that and particularly fears a closed process. (He even fears what could happen if he himself tried to decide...a fear that was no doubt intensified in that moment by the fact that he almost lost his temper really badly at Yejain a couple times.) But as deeply wounded as he is...we'll have to see what happens with the outcome. I don't think he could fully rest even in a best-case scenario.

Oh...and as you know from what we've discussed between the two of us, there's a lot of other stuff going on in him too (which in truth has been going on for years already and will continue for many more). If I could sum up what he feels at this stage in his life, it would be: This world is broken...there is something wrong at the core.

As for Yejain...he agreed only to fighting the Dominion. He didn't agree to any more than that. And Berat didn't press him. I think he knows there's time and a lot that he doesn't even know yet, so he ought not. Plus for a man of Yejain's nature, it could be psychologically too much for him, as a gul, to do that to him.
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