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Old October 10 2008, 12:01 AM   #76
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Re: Star Trek: Sigils and Unions--The Thirteenth Order

You may have hinted but I must be dense-I never saw a sign of it coming. You're doing good-all you really need is some confidence in your own skills. Personally, I think you show talent in your writing-and the care you take in assembling each sequence is obvious. In other words, you are doing great.
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Old October 10 2008, 01:41 AM   #77
Nerys Ghemor
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Re: Star Trek: Sigils and Unions--The Thirteenth Order

Mistral wrote: View Post
You may have hinted but I must be dense-I never saw a sign of it coming. You're doing good-all you really need is some confidence in your own skills. Personally, I think you show talent in your writing-and the care you take in assembling each sequence is obvious. In other words, you are doing great.
It may be that those areas only make full sense in retrospect. But the big one I thought MIGHT tip people off was when Tayben and Macet are having their conversation and it turns to the subject of Lessek--and the discussion of the prisoners and the rebellion gets tied up into one. There's a direct reference to raising a strike force there, and I wondered if somebody was going to catch it there and say something.

The other areas where I thought people might get a whiff of it was when Macet makes that statement of responsibility at the beginning, to Spirodopoulos, and after the Rondac attack where Macet gets concerned about having to make his case to certain "commanding officers" on Lessek.

And thanks for your kind words. I was just kinda worried that this particular plot twist was going to come off as too crazy to be believable and I'm glad to know that's not the case.
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Old October 12 2008, 11:39 PM   #78
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Re: Star Trek: Sigils and Unions--The Thirteenth Order

2375—The Dominion War—Six days after the attack on Rondac III
Cardassian Rasgălor of Lessek

“It’s insane!

“They’re so full of crap that it’s leaking out their ears!”

“Commander! What about Earth? How many casualties? What did they say?”

“Are you stupid, Wilkes? You actually swallowed that?”

“Excuse you, Crewman! How long have I been here, and how long have you?”

“It’s a hell of a chance to stick it to the Dominion!”

“They’ll just pick us off on the way out the door!”

“Logic dictates they have had the opportunity to do that every day, but the fact that they have not dispensed with us to reallocate their resources elsewhere speaks volumes.”

“If they’re really going to arm us, why don’t we just take the weapons and—”

The free-for-all had been going on for a full five minutes, and Spirodopoulos had had every intention of letting it go for another few before intervening. They had to work it out of their systems—but that last comment was too much. Did Lieutenant Haeruuh really want to give the Cardassians a reason to do what Chief Librescu suggested they would? They might not be present in the room, but any suggestion outside the confines of the mess hall that Haeruuh’s statement might represent even a sizable minority consensus was the last thing Spirodopoulos needed right now.

Maybe standing back and letting them hash it out wasn’t the smartest idea after all. Yeah, I’m not anybody’s captain here, but I guess I really should’ve moderated this thing a lot more…here’s to hoping I can salvage this before I miss the window of opportunity completely!

The ranking Federation officer clambered onto a bench, cupped his hands around his mouth, and bellowed, “STOP IT!

To his astonishment, all one hundred and twenty-six beings fell silent. One month ago, he had been a soldier and former shipboard security head with little more to think about than holding the line on some accursed rock in the Chin’toka system. He hadn’t even been the commanding officer of the entire garrison; that was Commander Settles’ problem. And now, simply because he happened to be the highest-ranking officer these dissidents had managed to snatch up, he was the man who might hold the key to a chance to really stir things up behind Dominion lines. Or lead us all to our graves. Or the largest mass court-martial Starfleet has ever seen. He hadn’t forgotten any of that—not in the slightest. And he was exhausted—or should have been. But something within him was on fire. The more he had tossed and turned that sleepless night-into-morning, the more he listened now…the more he realized his mind was irrevocably made up.

“I understand how much I’m asking of you,” he acknowledged, “and that’s why I’m not just ordering you to do it. After a great deal of thought, I have come to believe that if the Federation truly is in the situation these Cardassians have said it is, and they really are willing to put us on an even footing with them, weapons and all…then we may be just about the only Federation citizens in a position to fight. Everything about this place says to me they’re desperate and they’re in earnest. Either this is the most elaborate holodeck deception I could possibly envision—and I’ll allow a small possibility that it is—or the opportunity to turn the entire war. Either we drive ourselves crazy with paranoia…or we act.

“Even though we find ourselves in a place and among people we didn’t choose, I believe taking the chance to make a difference is in keeping with our oath as Starfleet officers even though make no mistake…it may not be taken as such by all who learn of this, if we make it home. You may not have a career when you get back. Hell, this thing might begin and end in a penal colony. I encourage you all to weigh this very carefully. But for myself…I will go.”

Ensign Ivy Wilkes, one the first officers brought to Lessek when the Trager beamed a clutch of survivors out from the disintegrating wreckage of the Gora bim Gral, stood and strode over to the bench upon which Spirodopoulos stood. “I’m going with you,” she vowed.

Lieutenant T’Ruveh followed next. “If the Cardassian resistance fighters move against the Lessek shipyard without our aid, especially if they must rely on a ship-to-ship assault without being able to mount a ground offensive, the odds are 89.31 percent that their efforts will fail, which will bring Dominion assault troops to this planet in overwhelming force. No matter what munitions and supplies the Cardassians are able to provide us to take refuge in the wilderness, our capture and execution following a Dominion buildup on Lessek are nearly inevitable. As resistance fighters alongside the Cardassians, we each stand a 35.29 percent chance of survival. While less than a 50 percent probability, this chance is significantly more favorable.”

Frinx the math—I want to kick some icy Breen butt!” Petty Officer Saar yelled. This triggered a round of table-pounding from his fellows from the troop carrier Westmoreland, who rose to their feet as one chanting, “Go! Go! Go! Go!

The next to stand was one of the two Bajorans—the red-headed Crewman Webene, rescued by the Ghiletz after the Starfleet supply ship Biko was forced to crash land on Pullock V. A ripple of hushed murmuring silenced the Westmoreland cheering squad as the burly young noncom, almost Va’Kust’s equal in size, began to speak. “I grew up during the Occupation and I have seen things even this war has yet to match. I used to pray the Prophets would dish it all right back out on the Cardassians, blow for blow. Now that it’s really happening…I don’t know. It just doesn’t feel like I thought it would. The Cardassians gave me more than enough reason to hate and I can tell some of them are just barely restraining themselves. But they all seem to agree that if they step out of line, Va’Kust will make them regret it. And if that’s the tone they’re setting from the top…then maybe there’s hope.”

The nineteen-year-old Webene wore a bemused expression as in the wake of his encouragement, over two thirds of the Federation soldiers took to their feet. Spirodopoulos scanned the room and noted a deep furrow on Ensign Folani’s brow. Though Webene Grathis was by far Folani’s junior in age, his cogent words seemed to have struck a nerve. Something occurred to Spirodopoulos then, resurfacing from those adrenaline-engraved memories of the final battle on AR-558. That Cardassian she stabbed…he couldn’t have been any older than Webene. He would have still been in grade school at the end of the Occupation. And in that light, it was no wonder the man Spirodopoulos had grappled with had been so outraged at his young comrade’s death—especially at the way Folani had taunted him as he’d died, for everything she had accused him of had been impossible.

Not that I’ve been much better, he thought as a Kobheerian engineer from the civilian freighter Aidos-Regaul stood and with him, the other three survivors from his wrecked vessel’s crew. The resolve of these civilians, who on their cargo runs had seen firsthand the everyday indignities suffered by Cardassian civilians in the Dominion alliance, did the work of compelling almost every other Starfleet crewperson in the room to stand. Only a few, Ensign Folani among them, still remained seated.

Spirodopoulos said nothing—he simply remained standing, as did the other seven AR-558 survivors from the Petraeus. Folani Jederia bowed her head, eyes closed, her face a contorted, unreadable maelstrom of emotions. She stood, her eyes staring off into a distant abyss.

“I’m not doing this for the Cardassians, sir,” she stated tightly. “I’m doing this for Starfleet.” Then Folani, who had been one of his security officers on the Petraeus, looked Makis Spirodopoulos squarely in the eye. “And I’m doing this because time and again, trusting you has paid off. I don’t like it…but I’m going to trust you with this one, too.”

And with that concession—however desultory, all final resistance broke.

That’s a go for launch, Spirodopoulos thought as his stomach wadded itself into a ball.
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Last edited by Nerys Ghemor; October 13 2008 at 03:08 AM.
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Old October 13 2008, 12:10 AM   #79
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Re: Star Trek: Sigils and Unions--The Thirteenth Order

Consensus, but only barely in some instances. I wonder just how much adversity this disparate group can take without fracturing?

Again, wonderful stuff!
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Old October 13 2008, 08:38 PM   #80
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Re: Star Trek: Sigils and Unions--The Thirteenth Order

Yeah, that was a great sequence. So, now what happens? Does Macet go, "OK, here's your new starship," or what?
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Old October 13 2008, 08:58 PM   #81
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Re: Star Trek: Sigils and Unions--The Thirteenth Order

Gibraltar wrote: View Post
Consensus, but only barely in some instances. I wonder just how much adversity this disparate group can take without fracturing?

Again, wonderful stuff!
Thanks!

These people definitely do come from a lot of different backgrounds, all the way from the Westmoreland (which for whatever reason seems to have a really gung-ho attitude) to skeptical Federation-Cardassian War veterans, to Bajorans, to civilians. It's gonna be a challenge for Spirodopoulos, that's for sure!

Mistral wrote: View Post
Yeah, that was a great sequence. So, now what happens? Does Macet go, "OK, here's your new starship," or what?
Hah, it's not going to be THAT easy!

Remember, they have a ground battle ahead of them to GET the fifth Gălor. Plus, if I were Macet, no matter HOW trusting I was being, I still wouldn't let a bunch of Starfleeters run around with their very own Dominion-enhanced Gălor without some very close supervision.
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Old October 14 2008, 03:29 AM   #82
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Re: Star Trek: Sigils and Unions--The Thirteenth Order

Well, we learned something important about Spirodopoulos.

He's a leader - reluctant, perhaps, but definitely a leader.
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Old October 14 2008, 12:07 PM   #83
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Re: Star Trek: Sigils and Unions--The Thirteenth Order

Well, he got them on board--just and with more than a few misgivings from all concerned. Now...we'll see how this ad hoc "alliance" holds up.
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Old October 14 2008, 04:51 PM   #84
Nerys Ghemor
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Re: Star Trek: Sigils and Unions--The Thirteenth Order

TheLoneRedshirt wrote: View Post
Well, we learned something important about Spirodopoulos.

He's a leader - reluctant, perhaps, but definitely a leader.
DavidFalkayn wrote: View Post
Well, he got them on board--just and with more than a few misgivings from all concerned. Now...we'll see how this ad hoc "alliance" holds up.
He was a competent department head back on the Petraeus, and probably pretty good on AR-558, too--but there's always been a layer or two of top cover.

I think the seeds of something were always there, but now they'd better grow--quickly, because if the balance of power in this group shifts the wrong way...even if it's not awful, but just looks bad, there's going to be some serious trouble.
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Old October 18 2008, 05:34 PM   #85
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Re: Star Trek: Sigils and Unions--The Thirteenth Order

Okay...I'm going to go ahead and give you this section early. But there may be a bit of a hiatus after this, because the distance between posted chapters and what's written is closing a bit more than I would like. By the way, if anyone wants to actually hear the Cardăsda phrases pronounced, let me know and I'll whip up a recording and post it to the background thread.

(Oh, and that's not a typo on Va'Kust's name in that one section--that's Ilojan transliteration because I switched into Cardăsda for that part.)

=====

The sound of grinding gravel greeted Spirodopoulos as he closed the mess hall door behind him—heavy Cardassian boots skidding to a sudden halt. The Starfleet officer failed to restrain a momentary grin: Va’Kust had been pacing. He seemed taller when I first saw him, Spirodopoulos thought. Then common sense kicked in. He’s still built like a Klingon with the Golden Gate Bridge on his shoulders…it’s just that now I’m looking at him as a potential ally instead of imagining that bulk pounding me into the ground.

Va’Kust looked up, arms crossed. Meeting Spirodopoulos’ eyes, his prominent lips matched the human’s expression with a cryptic half-smile of their own. “Kiba’avzayn, Spirodopoulos,” he said, encircled eyes filled with expectations. “I hope that look means you have brought us such.”

Bocot kiba’avzayn edek,” Spirodopoulos replied in cautious Cardăsda, his speech slow to help him focus on distinguishing the ‘k’ shared by both men’s native languages from the heavily-aspirated ‘c.’ I bring good tidings. “It took awhile, but I got unanimous agreement—we’re in.”

The big Cardassian bowed slightly, the effect rather like a skyscraper swaying in an earthquake: a highly visible gesture, but one that did almost nothing to diminish his height. “Bocot kiba’avzayn çad nou,” he reiterated with the same careful diction, mirroring Spirodopoulos’ Cardăsda phrasing to give him the best chance of hearing his words past the translator, which could never properly render in Federation Standard the most crucial nuance of his reply—that small aspect marker ‘nou,’ which meant in this context that Va’Kust acknowledged a significant act of kindness: the sort he considered immortalized in time even after the benefactor and the recipient were long dead.

Spirodopoulos bowed in acknowledgment and Va’Kust’s smile widened further. The glinn lifted his wrist and tapped a button on his communicator. “Va’Kust to Gul Rebek—I have a definite affirmative.”

Excellent!” the lady gul reveled. “Summon all of your men and his to Building One-Maçliyd; we’ll meet you there.” Spirodopoulos recognized the designation as the largest of the restricted buildings, a structure large enough to park several shuttlecraft. Could that be what they’ve got in there? he wondered as Va’Kust signaled the other Cardassians.

A few minutes later, the entire contingent of one hundred and twenty-five Federation crew and thirty-six Cardassians stood before the expansive building. “This base where you’ve been living was intended at the beginning of the war to become a survival training center,” explained the gul of the Sherouk. “We didn’t initially plan to use the shipyard. Those plans were scrapped when the Dominion decided some Cardassian shipbuilding operations would be moved here in order to give more desirable systems like Monac to their own efforts. In the relocation process, the Vigilance Corps left certain supplies behind.” The young gul swept a hand at the building and clasped it immediately again behind his back as if snatching it away from the fangs of a hungry targ. “This is the armory.”

Macet stepped forward. “This is not an easy thing to do,” he gravely declared. “This is an unprecedented act of trust between our peoples and I shall be frank: we are outnumbered and will soon be outgunned by you. For the sake of saving our people from the Dominion, we ask your faithfulness to your word.” This tallest of the guls turned to Va’Kust, who, impressively enough, had a couple of centimeters on him. “We need to begin immediately—the sooner they familiarize themselves with their equipment, the better.” Va’Kust acknowledged with a bow.

“Computer—open doors, authorization Va’Koust-rhakam-lect-ekou-rhăçim.” Spirodopoulos heard the code in Cardăsda but understood the first part to be seven-orange-eight, with the last being a letter in the Cardăsda alphabet.

The great doors, large enough to admit a runabout, slid open to reveal a vast storehouse: hand disruptors and rifles with their accompanying power packs, grenades, combat rations, rack upon rack of armor, and every other sort of equipment a Cardassian soldier could possibly ask for. How could all of this simply be abandoned? Spirodopoulos marveled. Not even the training division of the Cardassian Guard was known for that sort of carelessness—either they had pulled out in such a hurry that there had been no time to repurpose or destroy these supplies, or someone had intentionally ‘lost’ them with the idea of keeping one up on the Dominion.

“We’ll escort you inside in groups of twenty,” Va’Kust announced, “and match supplies and munitions to each of you, which will include ensuring a proper fit for your armor.”

“Excuse me?” somebody sniffed in the back of the Federation gathering. “You mean we’re actually wearing that?” Spirodopoulos’ first impulse was to turn around and chide the Tellarite responsible, but decided that not only would it not accomplish anything, but it would also single her out to the wary Cardassians as a potential troublemaker. He said nothing instead.

Va’Kust proudly drew himself to his full height and replied, “This armor does a better job at deflecting shrapnel and glancing phaser hits than the cloth uniforms you Starfleet people wear into combat. Given that we must begin this insurrection of ours with a ground assault—I strongly recommend you avail yourselves of what we offer.” Spirodopoulos didn’t need to glance down at himself to recognize that despite his best efforts to wash and mend his worn uniform, it had seen better days. Much of the crew was in similar condition, some having already resorted to simple black, two-piece Cardassian replacements for uniforms too shredded for repair.

Ironic that it’s the Cardassians who finally get us what we’ve been lobbying for the whole time, Spirodopoulos thought. Rumor had it a form of Starfleet armor, or at least some sort of decent flak jacket, did in fact exist, but no hint of it had ever been glimpsed on the front lines—leading to snide speculation amongst the ground troops that Starfleet Command’s insistence on the simple flame-retardant cloth uniforms was for no other reason but maintaining the image of a peaceful force even in the muck of the trenches. Most likely, Starfleet had simply forgotten what a true ground assault was like.

“Let’s get started,” Spirodopoulos decided. Va’Kust gestured for the first group to follow the two of them into the storehouse.

A young Cardassian noncom whose armor inscription indicated her as Lessek base personnel moved to the fore of the group. Spirodopoulos thought he remembered the woman’s name to be Trughal. She pointed towards a raised circle on the floor about half a meter wide with a pedestal next to it, which looked rather like a transporter pad. Seeing this resemblance, he stopped just short. “It’s a fitter, not a disintegrator,” Trughal remarked with an exasperated sigh and crossed her arms. Va’Kust shot her a withering look Spirodopoulos’ American grandmother would have labeled ‘the skunk eye,’ and the noncom’s tone snapped to stony neutrality. “Just walk across.”

Spirodopoulos warily complied; nothing happened except a brief, low-pitched hum and a set of numbers flashing up onto the pedestal’s display screen. “That way,” Trughal indicated, pointing to a numbered rack in the corner of the room. So much for a happy little family, Spirodopoulos thought.



For what felt like the millionth time as he donned the Cardassian battle armor, Spirodopoulos tugged at the neckline of his undershirt, trying in vain to pull it up as a breeze passed over the skin where his neck joined his shoulders. To its credit, the dark, burnt-umber shirt conformed much more closely to the wearer’s physique than the plain black pullovers one out of ten of the crew had already adopted, which from the way they draped off the shoulders clearly had not been designed with the rest of the quadrant in mind. Still, the new undershirt didn’t come up quite as far as he was accustomed to.

The tri-ribbed cuirass sat even lower on his shoulders right where the trapezius ended and the deltoids began, far from where the necklines of most Earth men’s fashions fell. In spite of this, the cuirass held firmly to its place, restrained by its metal-woven half-sleeves and similar material wrapped around the sides of his ribcage. Before actually laying hands on the cuirass, he had expected it to be a rigid, inflexible affair, but the texture reminded him now more of rubber, perhaps some sort of memory material—just flexible to let him bend down to touch his toes comfortably, but quickly springing back without a wrinkle when he stood.

His left arm felt off-balance as he lowered it back to his side: strapped around his wrist was the Cardassian combination communicator-translator—bulkier than its Starfleet counterpart but according to Glinn Va’Kust, capable of punching through several varieties of interference and jamming fields against which a Starfleet comm badge would be helpless. Counterbalancing the wristcomm, or so it felt, was the disruptor holster on his belt secured to his right leg with a leatherlike strap—a strangely-designed piece of equipment, though he had to admit it would beat having his sidearm smack his thigh with every footfall in a run…yet another ingenious feature of Starfleet’s excuse for combat fatigues. But most importantly, its presence conveyed the Cardassians’ earnestness in arming the former prisoners.

“How the kosst can you actually expect me to wear that?” Folani spat as she reached the head of the line across the room. “I may be throwing in with your little ‘resistance,’ but I’m not about to go there.”

“I expect you to be mature and follow your commanding officer’s example,” Trughal retorted as Spirodopoulos pulled his remaining boot the rest of the way over his calf to its final place not far below his knee and fastened it up the back as fast as he could. Oh, damn…brace for impact!

“Don’t you dare label the scars of the Occupation an ‘immaturity,’ Cardassian.”

“And don’t you take it out on me when I didn’t set foot on your thrice-burned weed-ball!”

Spirodopoulos bolted to his feet.

“Then maybe you need a little education on just how much burning your people did on Bajor!”

“And you need a little education on etiquette—but apparently that’s beyond your capabilities.” Beyond the translator Spirodopoulos heard a definite plural on the viciously-spat modifier, not to mention the very pointed use of the subordinate address.

Folani clearly heard it too. “Look who’s talking, sp—”

That’s it! Both of you stand down and shut up!” Spirodopoulos snapped, praying the sheer force of his order would be enough to shock Bajoran and Cardassian into submission. Both women’s heads whipped around to face him in a parallel motion that would have been amusing if not for the gravity of the situation. Their eyes bulged like marbles. I must be a hell of a sight—good! he thought as Macet, Va’Kust, and Lieutenant T’Ruveh converged on their position, ready to pry the women apart if necessary.

Macet’s back was neutronium-rigid with rage, his demeanor more like Dukat’s now than Spirodopoulos had ever seen. “I want to know exactly what the problem is here,” he growled, and Spirodopoulos realized that although Macet had been about the same distance away from Trughal and Folani as he had, the Cardassian’s ears could not resolve the furious shouting into distinct words, at least not reliably enough for him to stake a disciplinary action on it. Nonetheless, he allowed Macet to take the lead, for they had yet to be officially released—not to mention professional courtesy between militaries: the gul did outrank him.

Trughal leveled a vicious glare at Folani with her accusation. “This Bajoran insists on demonstrating contempt for us and our generosity—”

“You will address me, not her!” Macet warned with a tap at his breast. “And I strongly suggest focusing on the content of the conversation, not the genetic structure of the other party.”

“She refuses—with obscenities—to don our armor. She insists on unloading her anger upon me for alleged Cardassian atrocities from before I even graduated preparatory school—”

The gul’s voice dropped nearly to a whisper, but the ice behind it was unmistakable. “Not another word. Our leaders would not have issued an apology for actions taken during the Occupation had there not been substance to the allegations—and I, furthermore, will not suffer denialism in my presence. You are confined to quarters, all privileges revoked until further notice. Get out.” The Cardassian noncom’s breath caught, visibly so even under the cuirass. Her eyes shone like a cornered vole at what must have seemed to her like an unconscionable breach of solidarity. “Ulath—Vencarh—see to it and keep watch.” Spirodopoulos watched expectantly to see if the young Trager officers would comply with an order to incarcerate a fellow Cardassian for the sake of this macrocosmic alliance. Under their gul’s unblinking gaze, they did.

Folani smirked—and Spirodopoulos unleashed his own salvo. “You’re not off the hook, Ensign!” Her face promptly fell. “I’ve had enough of the belligerent attitude and I don’t care if you found it matched just now. It is your responsibility to be the bigger person and walk away instead of escalating the conflict. I don’t care what Trughal’s problem might have been—your tone and your language just threw antimatter on it. It’s not just what you said that I take exception to. It’s what you almost said, and that is conduct unbecoming of a Starfleet officer. That stops now. That’s not this uniform talking,” he said, gathering a pinch of the right sleeve’s textured black fabric between his fingers. “It’s decorum—the bigger part being to exercise it when you least feel like it.

“Now…on to actual substance. I respect your reservations about wearing a uniform that has been attached to so much anguish for you and the Bajoran people. And I suspect it must be hard to see me and so many others of us do so. I believe the gul and I are on the same page in that you or any of us must be free to decline without fear of reprisals.” He glanced over at Macet, his expression firm. Give this one to me—I’ve backed you this far. The Cardassian met his eyes and nodded. “I just ask one thing of you: I might expect this lapse of control from someone Crewman Webene’s age, but I haven’t seen him lose his cool once. I’m sure you can do the same.” The Greek officer met her eyes and allowed a faint smile to tug at his lips. “Let’s move forward from here, all right?”

“All right.” Folani locked her eyes upon her commanding officer’s face to the exclusion of all else, much like a person forcing herself not to stare at a disfiguring injury.

Spirodopoulos cursed himself as he accepted the grudging concession. To think I was stupid enough to expect that I, Makis Spirodopoulos, could wipe away years of bad blood with a wave of my hand!
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Old October 18 2008, 09:13 PM   #86
TimmyWl
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Re: Star Trek: Sigils and Unions--The Thirteenth Order

Hey - I've just caught up with the fan fiction and it's very well done. I do like how the realism of sleeping with the enemy - especially if one is Bajoran - is addressed. The bit about the language is quite appealing. I never thought Cardassian was a different language - it all was in English when I watched the series.

I did notice this;
Nonetheless, he allowed Macet to take the lead, for they had yet to be officially released—not to mention professional courtesy between militaries: the gul did outrank him.[/FONT]
[FONT=Corbel] Trughal leveled a vicious glare at Folani with her accusation. “This Bajoran insists on demonstrating contempt for us and our generosity—”
Just a slight error to a most excellent installment.
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Old October 18 2008, 10:27 PM   #87
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Re: Star Trek: Sigils and Unions--The Thirteenth Order

This is great stuff. I can't wait to see how the two groups manage to work together. There will of course be plenty of friction, but they need to overcome it for the mission to be a success. We all know the outcome, but getting there is the interesting part.

Isn't that what Garak kept telling Bashir about Cardassian murder mysteries?
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Old October 18 2008, 10:29 PM   #88
Nerys Ghemor
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Re: Star Trek: Sigils and Unions--The Thirteenth Order

Good catch, TimmyWI, and thanks! That's fixed now.

Almost everything was in English on the series minus some Klingon we were allowed to hear untranslated (and one incident with Dominionese where the translator was deliberately switched off), but that's always chalked up to the Universal Translator. In a written format, I can take more liberties with that and start to really bring in some of the local flavor, so to speak.

At least in the Sigils and Unions universe, once you start to gain familiarity with a language other than your own, the UT will act less and less until it finally doesn't act for you on that language at all without a specific request to do so. The less-active role of the UT in my universe is to prevent some of the consequences that could come from constant use. (For a very interesting treatment of the UT where one set of consequences DOES occur, I could point you to an excellent story by Mistral.)

In other words, the more Spirodopoulos hears and actually understands of Cardăsda, the more he's going to hear their words as actually spoken, rather than as translated. The process started when the Cardassians taught a bit of the base grammar and vocabulary. In effect, his translator implant is causing him to get a step-by-step immersion course. The extent of this effect differs for each Starfleet officer, though--not all of them are attempting to learn, and those who are will learn at a different pace depending on how much they interact and how much they actually attempt to speak Cardăsda.

Though I am not going to always reflect it in the story, I'd say that Spirodopoulos now hears the sorts of things you'd learn in your first semester of a language course as they actually are in Cardăsda, even if he's not always comfortable answering them that way (especially given how important clear communication is under circumstances like this). He's also started to make a little headway with the written language--he can at least read the inscriptions you see on any Guard officer's armor.

As to the consequences of their coming together on this--yeah, there's no way a situation like that is going to be easy, even if the commanding officers are able to establish some kind of rapport with each other. Conveying that to those under them is a whole different matter.
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Old October 18 2008, 10:32 PM   #89
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Re: Star Trek: Sigils and Unions--The Thirteenth Order

Xeris wrote: View Post
This is great stuff. I can't wait to see how the two groups manage to work together. There will of course be plenty of friction, but they need to overcome it for the mission to be a success. We all know the outcome, but getting there is the interesting part.

Isn't that what Garak kept telling Bashir about Cardassian murder mysteries?
Hey, thank you for reading as well!

I think the comment about their "enigma tales" is that everybody's guilty: the question is, who's guilty of what? (A sentiment that as a Dostoyevsky fan, I actually find very true to life. But that's a whole other can of worms--just look up the character of Father Zosima if you want to find out more about that.)

Without giving too much away, there will definitely be growing pains, and at several different phases throughout this, sure!
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Old October 19 2008, 03:30 PM   #90
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Re: Star Trek: Sigils and Unions--The Thirteenth Order

Nice. This will not be easy--what we saw here was just a lover's spat in comparison to what will probably lay ahead--you do not bury years of anger, bitterness, and hate overnight. My enemy's enemy' is my enemy's enemy--nothing more...nothing less.
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