Day 13: 1000 hours
Megan was becoming increasingly impatient as she waited for some Ferengi prison warden or official to free her. She simply sat on the bed, constantly fidgeting or doing stretches to keep her body supple. When Brunt arrived, Megan’s hopes were suddenly raised, was this the moment?
Brunt walked over to Megan’s cell and he lowered the force field. He then put on the best apologetic face that he could muster. “Ms Felpes, I want to express my condolences about this ah... unfortunate mishap.”
Megan stepped over the doorway and came very close to Brunt. “Mishap?” she said in a musing tone.
The look of sympathy on Brunt’s face was so unbelievably insincere. “The CFT can offer you substantial compensation for your troubles.” He moved closer to Megan, and there was obvious lust in his eyes. “I myself could help-”
Megan slapped Brunt’s face with all the force she could muster, her hands then flew to the collar on Brunt’s shirt. She pulled him close, choking Brunt, he was going to pay dearly for that sexual advance. “The next time you try to sweet talk towards me, I'll break every bone in you miserable little body.”
She let go of Brunt, and she was pleased to see that he looked shaken. Walking around Brunt, she then hissed right into his ear. “I've seen others of your kind before and I don't like deceivers or liars.”
With her right hand she tugged as hard as she could on Brunt's right ear, and she heard it break. Brunt screamed in pain, and his hands were on his right ear trying to soothe it.
In the background there were Ferengi guards laughing at Brunt, as he whimpered in pain, lying on the floor.
Feeling immense satisfaction from punishing Brunt, Megan walked out of the prison accompanied by two prison guards. Outside of the prison she met Odo, who had been waiting for her, and the two then beamed over into a runabout.
Day 19: 1800 hours
Megan and Max sat down around a table in the Replimat, initially there was silence between the two as Megan struggled to find the strength to tell Max how she felt. She and Max simply sipped on their mugs of tea, while Max occasionally glanced at her, she was careful to avoid eye contact.
Finally after a few minutes, Megan began to talk. “I came to Ferenginar for a vacation, not to be framed for a crime I didn't commit!”
She was looking at her mug, and as she spoke she grasped the mug so hard her knuckles turned white.
Max moved a hand over a table and gently grabbed Megan’s free hand. “I'm sorry for what has happened.”
Such an intimate gesture surprised Megan, and she realized that Max really did care for her. “It doesn't matter because I've been used and lied to before. I can’t explain it but I just feel weak...”
“You can't keep on punishing yourself like this, you've got to accept that your more sensitive to things that hurt you... You are still recovering and I think you ask to much of yourself sometimes, normality will return... eventually.”
Megan quickly stared into Max’s eyes before looking away, she felt as if she was going to cry. “I know,” she said quietly.
Letting go of Megan’s hand, Max got to his feet. “Listen I've got to go and see Holo, we have a holosuite booked for 1830 hours. I'll see you tomorrow.”
“Bye,” said Megan, while still staring into her mug of tea.
She then disregarded the tea, and left the Replimat and headed to her quarters. Max was right; she was more sensitive than she cared to admit, the experience of being framed seemed to bring out all the horrific memories of the Tau Primia prison and Bordak into full force. Once she had returned to her quarters, she started crying. One thing she couldn’t understand was why she had more will to endure when she in the Tau Primia prison than she did now.
But she could never give up, for giving up was like taking poison to her. She would endure, for giving up would mean that Bordak had won. It was an absolutely bloody minded attitude, but it was the only way for her to keep going on and to live.
Day 19: 1830 hours
Ezri had been waiting inside her office, for Odo and Quark to arrive. The two were going to report to her about the state of the Ferengi government. As the office door opened, Odo and Quark walked in and they seemed to be having quite an argument.
“Why should I explain to Ezri about the political state of the Ferengi Alliance? It's a complete waste of time,” said Quark.
Odo looked at Quark menacingly. “Because Quark you know what is going on and part of Ezri's job is to monitor the political situation of interplanetary states close to DS9.”
“Is that actually-”
Ezri decided to end this petty argument. “That is enough, you Quark are going to tell me everything you know about the Ferengi government.”
Despite Ezri’s order, Quark still looked reluctant. “Captain this isn't really necessary.”
Realizing a different approach was needed, Ezri walked around her desk and came to a stop next to Quark. “Maybe your right Quark.”
Looking triumphant, Quark looked at Odo in a superior manner. “You see Odo? I was absolutely right.”
Ezri came behind Quark, and gave him an oo-mox, this was a technique she had picked up from Jadzia. Get it right, complete with the warm and seductive voice, and Ferengi males would be begging to you. She spoke softly into Quark’s ear. “However if you do tell me what you know... well suffice to say there could be some value to it...”
Quark laughed mildly, his eyes were half open and he looked very aroused. “What sort of value?”
At once Ezri removed her hands from Quark's lobes, as she now had Quark’s full attention. “Depends on the information your about to give to me...” She sat down on the top of her table, and her arms were folded waiting for Quark to oblige to her request.
“Well let's see...” said Quark. “Have you heard of Brunt?”
Day 19: 2100 hours
Inside her quarters, Ezri was reading a book, it was a Vulcan novel, although it was so direct and logical this book could hardly be classed as a novel. Ezri wondered what her obsession was with Vulcan literature, perhaps because it was so direct and devoid of emotion. There were no doubts, just logic and clarity, and above all there were no broken hearts, just a cold exterior to suppress all emotions.
In some ways Ezri wished she could suppress all her emotions, then she wouldn’t feel so bad about her break-up with Bashir.
When the door chimed Ezri placed the book on a small stand, and sat up more straightly. “Come in!”
It was Megan and she looked distinctly agitated and nervous, her hands were clasped together and they seemed to shake slightly. “I'm sorry to bother you captain, I was just wondering whether Starfleet would be filing charges against me...”
Ezri could not believe that Megan had worked herself up into such a nervous state over this. “Megan the Grand Nagus himself has pardoned you!”
Megan’s face crumpled with self-doubt and worry. “But there's a difference! The charges weren't dropped, instead they were simply looked over,” she said in an agonized voice.
Standing up, Ezri decided to be more reassuring with Megan, she placed her hands on the sides of Megan’s shoulders. “Listen to me, you don't have to worry about anything, I've cleared it up with Starfleet and there won't be any charges brought against you. I know you care deeply about what other people think of you, and you should know that despite what has happened, I don’t think any less of you.”
She removed her hands from Megan’s shoulders. It was a somewhat motherly gesture on Ezri’s part, but she was dealing with a crew member who had tremendous amounts of emotional baggage. However Ezri’s words, didn’t seem to ease the strained and tense look on Megan’s face. “Is there something else bothering you?”
Megan mouth was lined with an almighty frown. “You don't want to know...” She then turned around to leave. “Goodnight captain.”
Ezri wasn’t about to let Megan walk away in such a moody manner, without first confronting her. “Megan I know you carry a terrible personal burden, what with everything that happened on Tau Primia. But if it's affecting you this badly I think you should see a counselor.”
Turning around, Megan looked beside herself with barely contained anger. “I don't need some counselor poking and prying into my personal affairs!” she said loudly.
She dropped the heated nature out of her voice. “I'm sorry captain for that outburst, it's just there are some things that I'd rather remain secret. Besides you should also know that I don’t bottle up my emotions.” Megan paused, and looked at some point just above Ezri’s head. “I come to terms with everything that has happened to me in the privacy of my quarters. I don’t want a counselor because I want to recover at my own accord, and not have someone hold my hand like a baby.”
Ezri decided to let Megan off the hook for that outburst. “It is simply a suggestion, whatever your emotions are if they do start to affect your job, then I will have no choice but to order you to see a counselor. Right now though, I will let this matter rest.”
“Thank you captain.”
After Megan had gone, Ezri started to regret not ordering Megan to see a counselor. On a professional level, Ezri believed she was making a mistake. A crew member with an unstable emotional state like Megan's, was potentially a danger to himself and others. However Ezri sensed a certain mettle and determination coming from Megan, and Ezri was certain that Megan would be more careful to control her emotions. Ezri had to admire the tenacity and toughness of Megan, because despite all of the suffering and pain, this woman refused to show any of her anguish or grief to others.
That is the end of Vacation
. Here are links to the rest of my stories (which are listed in chronological order in terms of my series plot):
Secrets and Lies
Ménage ŕ Trois
Tip of the Iceberg
Running the Gauntlet