All right, folks. I've given quite a bit of build-up to this. I hope it'll prove worth the wait.
Here, I now fully direct my attention to Dr. Julian Bashir. This story is set shortly after he and Ezri break up in Mike and Andy's DS9 Relaunch tale Trill: Unjoined
. Though Ezri herself doesn't appear in this
tale, she is certainly present in Bashir's mind, in a sense.
As the title implies, I have heavily referred to elements of the James Bond franchise--due, of course, to Dr. Bashir fantasizing along those lines in "Our Man Bashir".
This time, however, the story is not on the holodeck--with the exception of a "pre-titles" sequence. (Interesting note: when writing that sequence, I paced it to the score of the pre-titles sequence of "Diamonds Are Forever", which you can find on YouTube under the title of "Diamonds Are Forever score: Gunbarrel and Manhunt".)
I'll post this tale in chapter-intervals, much as I did for "Rendezvous With Destiny".
All right. Dim the lights, draw the curtains...and bring on the gunbarrel sequence, set to John Barry's legendary theme....
Star Trek: Deep Space Nine
"From Risa With Love"
It was late at night in the city of Hong Kong. Fa Ling stood at the counter of her shop, cleansing it with a cloth, the light on. She had run this trinket store for as long as she could remember—she literally couldn’t recall doing anything else. She wasn’t looking through the glass window-wall, to the street. All was quiet, in the night. All was peaceful—
—until the glass shattered. A man had been thrown through it, falling on his back on the floor, with shards of glass around him.
She let out a yelp at the crash, but froze, saying nothing, as she watched the man whirl out a gun, firing it once at the giant figure outside—doubtless the man who’d thrown him—who went down immediately.
Fa Ling saw the first man rise to his feet, brushing himself off, turning to her. He looked western, with short curled dark hair and a tanned, handsome face. He was tall and gaunt, and dressed in a western black-tie suit.
He gave her a small smile. “Sorry for the mess….”
She found herself returning the smile—until she saw two more figures out in the street, guns at the ready. “Look out!” she cried.
The man whirled around, firing two shots. The figures went down as quickly as the first.
The man turned back to her, smiling again. “I’d wager that’s all of them.”
Fa Ling shook her head in bewilderment—and admiration. “Who…who are
His smile grew, as he walked to the counter. “Name’s Bashir. Julian Bashir.”
He pulled out a checkbook from an inside coat pocket, and took a pen from the counter. “I’d estimate…five hundred dollars in damages, hmm?”
It was actually a great
overestimate. But the glint in his eyes made clear that he knew that. He was being…generous.
Fa Ling swallowed. “Th…thank
“No need,” he said with a wink. “My government wouldn’t care for the mess.”
He handed the filled-out check and the pen to her, gave her a nod, and walked off into the night.
Fa Ling narrowed her eyes and smiled. And then she returned to her work.
* * *
Julian Bashir, Double-O Agent of MI6, opened the door to his Hong Kong suite, ready to relax at last. On the other hand…
The program isn’t over yet…which means something is still going on. Perhaps there’s still someone left, to take revenge…?
Whatever it was—tired or not, he wanted to be ready.
“Scarlett?” he called out to his valet—the replacement for his long-since dearly departed Mona Luvsitt.
Nothing. It was also dark inside.
Promptly, he pulled out his Walther, and tread lightly as he entered. He flicked the switch near the door. The light to the foyer turned on.
He looked about him, listening hard for any sound. Nothing.
He proceeded, step by step, into the main room. Still no sound.
He turned on the next switch—
—and was greeted by four thugs, who rushed him the moment the lights went on, two of them grabbing him by the arms from behind, one each.
Bashir kicked both his heels back, and both thugs grunted in pain. As he regained his footing, he jerked one arm away, swinging a fist to the ruffian holding the other arm. Now freed, he swung his other arm upward, his fist meeting the chin of a third man, who went down.
He grabbed the dazed first thug by the collar, and yanked him to the fourth before the latter could pull out his gun. The two heads collided. Both went down.
Thug 2 swung his arm around Bashir’s neck, tightening with all his might. Bashir knew it would be no use to work on the arm. His vision blurred….
With the last of his strength, Bashir plunged his elbow behind him, into the man’s rib cage. Thug 2 grunted, and his arm loosened. Bashir dropped, his head sliding through, and he jerked his head back into the man’s stomach. He shot to his feet, and threw his fist into the side of the man’s face. The man went down, unconscious.
Bashir looked around him. That was all.
Wait—he heard a noise…. It was coming from inside the revolving wall, where his bed lay. Recovering his gun, he pressed the control….
It was Scarlett, bound and gagged. Bashir put his gun away, and freed her.
“Julian—thank heaven,” she whispered, gasping for breath.
Bashir nodded. “Are you all right?”
She nodded, smiling. “And you?”
Bashir looked behind him, as the unconscious quartet of ruffians.
“Been through enough to knock the wind out,” he said. Turning to her with a smile, he added, “Quite a shattering experience.”
She laughed, and threw her arms around him. Their lips met, and nothing more needed to be said.
* * *