Star Trek: Shaping a Cardassian

Discussion in 'Fan Fiction' started by Gul Re'jal, Aug 1, 2010.

  1. Gul Re'jal

    Gul Re'jal Commodore Commodore

    Jun 28, 2010
    Gul Re'jal is suspecting she's on the wrong space
    First chapter of that story is finished, but you have to wait until I post the next chapter of "Shaping a Cardassian", as it contains a huuuuugeeeee spoiler.

    Actually both chapters describe the same situation - their arrival :evil:
  2. Gul Re'jal

    Gul Re'jal Commodore Commodore

    Jun 28, 2010
    Gul Re'jal is suspecting she's on the wrong space
    “Cardassian” means “evil”
    2378 (2378)​

    “Karama, why do you do this?” Kapoor asked him quietly.

    “Because she expects it.”

    “What do you mean?”

    “Did I do anything to her? Did I really threatened her in any way?”

    “No. She just assumed--”

    “My point exactly. This is her punishment. She created this hell for herself, so she can live in it for all I care.”

    “Could you please stop feeding her fears? Please?”

    He stared at her for a short while.

    “Please?” she repeated.

    “I'll stop, but I do it for you, not for her.”

    Eleven days earlier[/RIGHT]

    Brenok waited for the materialisation process to end. When the swirling, orange energy patterns finally disappeared, there were two Terran women standing on the transporter pad. The one on the left was very short, her skin reminded him of cocoa his mother used to prepare every morning and her hair was a bunch of shiny, black wisps. She looked at him with her huge, black eyes and smiled. The other one was tall and slim. Her hair was... yellow, tied into a tail at the back of her head. She glanced nervously at him.

    “I am Glinn Brenok, the Gul's aide,” he said. “Welcome aboard Cardassian Union Warship Roumar.”

    “Thank you, sir,” the short officer stepped off the pad and approached him, handing him a Cardassian data rod. “These are our orders. My name is Lieutenant Amrita Kapoor and this is Lieutenant Maeva Ullmann.”

    He took the rod. “What are your specialities?” he asked, seeing that Kapoor wore gold and Ullmann wore blue.

    “I am an engineer and Lieutenant Ullmann is a scientist.”

    “Interesting,” he said, observing Ullmann finally stepping off the pad and reluctantly approaching him. “Here,” he handed them a Cardassian padd each. “These padds contain all necessary information you need for start.” They both took padds and Kapoor immediately activated hers. “You can also find a full list of our regulations. You have two days to study and memorise them and after those two days no deviation from regulations will be accepted,” it took all his will not to flinch. I sound just like Daset, he thought.

    “Uhm... sir?”

    “What is it, Kapoor?”

    “Only two days?”

    “Is there a problem?”

    “Well,” she glanced uncertainly at her colleague and then back at Brenok. “We can read the regulations, but we will not have them learnt by heart in two days.”

    “Why not?” he was puzzled.

    “Our memory is not as perfect as yours,” she smiled sheepishly. “We need a lot of time to memorize such a long document.”

    “I see your problem,” he said. He thought for a moment. “Then you will have to do your best to familiarise yourselves with the rules as fast as possible. Now, if you follow me I will take you to the Gul.”

    The three of them left the transporter room. Brenok tried to ignore Kapoor's curious glances at his hair.

    Jarol was a bit nervous, but she couldn't tell why. She stood by a window, looking at Cardassia blow, and wondering where all this Federation exchange officers business would take them. She still wasn't completely convinced this wasn't some kind of Feds' trick to neatly place their spies in the Union.

    She heard the door swish open, so turned to face her new crewmen. Crew-women, as it occurred.

    “Lieutenant Kapoor and Lieutenant Ullmann,” Brenok introduced them.

    She glanced at the short one, who smiled and nodded to her. The other one looked strange, like she was sick. Her hair was light yellow and her skin was almost as white as desert's sand. She lacked those funny, hairy eyebrows. No, wait, she had them, but they were so bright they were almost indistinguishable from her skin.

    “Welcome aboard,” Jarol said, her tone of voice official. “I'm Gul Jarol, in command of CUW Roumar. You are here as exchange officers,” she did her best not to snort, “from the United Federation of Planets. You will be treated as any other officer of the Cardassian Guard with all rights and duties thereof. You will follow our protocol and will be punished for any breach of regulations according to our law. If you have any questions, direct them to Glinn Brenok.” She couldn't believe he actually volunteered for this task. “Cultural misunderstandings would be overlooked in the beginning, however I suggest you familiarise yourselves with our customs not to offend anyone, even unwittingly.” She stopped and looked at the Ullmann person. “Are you all right? Why is water dripping off your face?” she asked, approaching the woman.

    Ullmann stiffened. “I am ok,” she said quietly eventually.

    Jarol looked at the other Terran. There were pearls of water on her forehead too.

    “It's the temperature, ma'am,” the short woman said. “We are not used to such heat.”

    “I understand that, but why are you wet?”

    “It's perspiration, ma'am. We expel excess of heat out of our bodies this way.”

    Mammals, Jarol thought.

    “There is a cooling unit waiting for you in your quarters,” Jarol said. “However you will have to adapt, as this is standard temperature aboard this ship.”

    “Yes, ma'am! We will, ma'am,” Kapoor squared her shoulders.

    Jarol kept looking at her. There was something wrong with the translator, or with vocabulary the Terran used.

    “Why do you call me your mom?” Jarol asked finally.

    Kapoor looked at her surprised, while Brenok did his best to hide his smile.

    “I beg your pardon?” the Terran said finally.

    “I suspect this is the best our translator can do, but why would it choose such a strange word. What is the word you use to address me?”

    “It is a standard word to address a female superior, ma... Sir?”

    “Oh,” Jarol's eyes smiled, even if her mouth didn't. “Well, there is not such word in Cardassian, so 'sir', or 'Gul' will do instead. I don't want to be your mom.”

    “Of course, Gul,” the woman nodded.

    Jarol thought there was a shadow of discipline there, in spite of that she didn't expect to see it.

    “Questions?” she looked at them both. None of them reacted, so she took it as a 'no'. “Dismissed,” she said and looked at Brenok.

    “Follow me,” he said and all three of them left the office.

    The door didn't close yet, when it reopened and Zamarran entered.

    “This is going to be veeeeeery interesting,” he commented, looking after the aliens.

    “You have something for me?” she asked him.

    “Gul Jarol,” he started officially, “I would like to report that Cardassian Union Warship Roumar is fully repaired and in top condition.”

    “About time,” she said, knitting her eye ridges as if scolding him. His face expressed only great disappointment. She smiled. “Just joking, Glinn, relax. Good job, I know it took you a lot of time and planning to gather everything you needed to bring us back to this crisp and fresh state.”

    “Yes, sir, it did.”

    “Fishing for promotion?”

    Zamarran only smiled. They both knew it wasn't possible, unless he would transfer away. Brenok was Glinn Grade Two and there could be only one aboard – the Gul's aide. Zamarran deserved the promotion to Grade Two more than anyone else on this ship, but she didn't want to lose him and he didn't seem to want to go. Being a Glinn Grade One had to satisfy him for now. However she knew it was a matter of time; he was ready to be someone's aide and the day he would leave was getting closer with every report he delivered.

    “Dismissed,” she said.

    He left her office and returned to the bridge.

    Jarol entered the bridge and the first thing she noted was presence of both exchange officers. She approved of their punctuality. She sat in her chair and asked for reports from all stations. There wasn't anything special happening, which she welcomed, as it gave her time to catch up with all paperwork and the “Withdrawal Planning”.

    “Sir, Gul Daset hails us,” Karama reported.

    “On screen.”

    “Gul Jarol,” Daset went straight to business. “Your presence is required in the Skarrat Prefecture.”

    “Isn't Gul Marret investigating them?” she asked.

    Skarrat was one of annexed worlds and to speed up gathering of information, each world was being investigated by one ship.

    “He is. However he says he has a problem there and requested your presence.”


    “I think he believes you are a better diplomat. He knows you managed to solve Amaratian situation, so he thinks you can deal with this too. Frankly, I agree with him.”

    “What about their presence?” she nodded once toward Kapoor.

    “They'll have to digest what they see.”

    Perfect. What we need is to show our internal problems to those Feds here.

    “Understood,” she said.

    Daset's face was replaced by the Union logo and then by Cardassia, slowly turning below them.
    “Karama, plot the course to the Skarrat System.”

    “Yes, sir.”

    “Brenok, what do we know about them?”

    The Glinn worked on his console for a moment and then reported.

    “The Skarrat system consists of three planets. The third one is inhabited by reptilian, biped, sentient race, the Skarrats. We have annexed the system one hundred and twenty-eight years ago. All three planets were quickly stripped of any valuable resources and are completely useless now.” He raised his head and looked at the Gul. “There are no reports of any problems with the Skarrats.”

    “Until now,” she said more to herself, that to him. “Karama, ETA?”

    “Seventy-three hours.”

    She still had time to do her paperwork.

    “Brenok, my office,” she barked and headed for her room.

    Her aide followed her.

    “How are they?” she asked when the door closed behind him. “Any problems so far?”

    “None that I know of. Kapoor seems opened and curious about everything. She spent whole evening on the bridge yesterday. Ullmann is reserved. I think she's a little scared.”

    “I'm not sure it's such a good idea to go to Skarrat with them. They would surely file some reports to the Federation, giving them even more excuses to interfere in our matters.”

    “You assume the situation there is critical.”

    “Marret wouldn't ask for us if he could deal with it himself.”

    Brenok thought for a while.

    “We can try to limit their expose to information, but we can't leave them behind,” he said eventually.

    She sighed.

    “I will prepare full report on current Skarrat situation,” he said.

    “Very good. We need to know what we should expect by the time we arrive there.”

    He left the office and returned to the bridge.
  3. Gul Re'jal

    Gul Re'jal Commodore Commodore

    Jun 28, 2010
    Gul Re'jal is suspecting she's on the wrong space
    “Sir,” Kamara spoke from his seat. “We are in communication range of the Skarrat system.”


    “I... I never 'de-boosted' our comm range,” he smiled sheepishly.

    “I told him not to,” Zamarran spoke. “Actually I have sent the specification to other ships to do the same.”

    Jarol didn't say anything, but there was a tiny smile playing with her lips.

    “Hail Gul Marret.”

    “Not the Prefect?”

    “No, I want Marret.”

    “This is Gul Marret,” the Cardassian's face appeared on her screen. “Ah, Gul Jarol. I'm glad you could come.”

    “What's the problem, Marret?”

    “Well, it's quite unusual. I got clear orders to inform and prepare them for our withdrawal, but they don't want us to go!”

    “What?” she didn't believe her own ears.

    “I know that the Federation makes demands and Ghemor listens to them, but what do we do if someone wants to stay with us? What would the Feds say? That we threatened them to stay? I don't want to be responsible for an interstellar conflict.”

    “Calm down,” she said. Marret seemed confused and panicked. “Did you talk to their Prefect?”

    “Yes. He's told me that even if we withdraw, he stays. He is going to resign his commission and stay on Skarrat.”

    “Oh,” that was getting really interesting. “Can you arrange a meeting with him? I want to talk to both of you.”

    “Let's meet in the Prefect's office in fifteen minutes.”

    “I'll be there.” She looked at Brenok; he just shrugged. “What did you find in the database? Anything that would explain this?”

    “I don't know. When we arrived to this system, the Skarrats were quite primitive. They didn't know warp and their technology was centuries behind ours. They never offered any real resistance. The planet lost its importance once it was stripped of all resources. Cardassian presence here is purely representative.”

    “What can you tell me about the Skarrats themselves?”

    “Reptilian bipeds. Matriarchal society. Peaceful. They have two sexes and lay eggs. Their bone and muscular build suggests they could be formidable warriors, if they chose to.”

    “Gul Marret informs that he and the Prefect await your arrival,” Karama spoke.

    “Fine. Brenok, with me. Zamarran, you have the bridge.”

    They headed for the transporter room and soon were on the planet, in a modest office of the local official.

    “Gul Jarol, please meet the Prefect of Skarrat, Gul Kadal.”

    “Pleased to meet you, Gul Jarol. I am guessing this is Glinn Brenok. I appreciate you could arrive here so quickly,” Kadal was an elder man, surely past his hundredth birthday.

    “I was quite surprised by the locals' stand regarding our decision of withdrawal,” she said.

    “Yes, well, the situation here is rather... atypical,” he smiled. “Please, be seated,” he waved toward chairs on the guest side of his desk.

    Marret, Brenok and Jarol sat, while he took his chair. The female Gul noticed a holopicture on the desk. There was an alien on it. Its skin was covered by scales, it was green and had a long snout. Oddly, there was a ring in its nostrils. It was also obvious it wore some kind of garment, as the photo included its neck and top of its shoulders.

    “My wife,” Gul Kadal said.

    Jarol looked at him. He nodded toward the holoimage.

    “This is my wife.”

    “You are married to a local?” she hoped her surprise wasn't obvious.


    “Is it uncommon here?” Brenok asked.

    “Actually, no,” Kadal smiled. “I was posted here fifty-four years ago. I made my life here and this is my home. I believe most of Cardassians, who came here long time ago, would say the same.”

    “If you don't mind me asking,” Brenok started, and after Kadal shook his head he continued, “do you also have children?”

    “Unfortunately no. Our physiologies are too different.”

    How ironic, Jarol though. Reptilian Cardassians could have children with mammalian Bajorans, but not with reptilian Skarrats.

    “It seems clear to me, that the Skarrats feel part of the Cardassian Union,” she said. “You have assimilated with them, so they don't see us as conquerors any more.”

    “Actually they never did,” Kadal smiled. “When our people arrived here, the Skarrats knew no warp, no transporter technology. They saw people, who appeared out of nowhere in orange light. They thought we were gods, who came to them. With time that superstition was cleared, but now the Skarrats see us as someone, who helped them to develop technologically and reach stars. They accepted our presence as a blessing. There was some resistance, but it was dealt with. We never had to use force against them since. I would lie if I said there were no problems here, but when I arrived, I decided to stop any abuse of them, I made sure they were treated fairly and...” he shrugged. “And somehow we live next to each other in peace today. I talked to my wife about the withdrawal and she says it scares them. They don't know what they would do without our help and support. She's not the only one, who--”

    “Wait,” Jarol raised her hand. “Help and support?”

    “Yes. We have left their planet as barren as ours is. This is not fair. We couldn't leave them like that, so I made sure there are regular resources shipments to ensure well being of everyone, who lives on Skarrat, both the Cardassians and the Skarrats.”

    “So if we withdraw, they would be... abandoned,” Jarol said.


    The Gul looked at Marret. He seemed completely lost.

    “Gul Jarol,” Kadal addressed her. “I know that Alon Ghemor promised to free all annexed worlds, but does it also include those, who don't wish to be 'freed'?”

    She was speechless. Here was a Gul, who really took care of his Prefecture, who cared about his people and the locals, who never abused them and even married one of them. How different it was from most of Prefects, who used force and labour camps, who used women like toys, who abused their power.

    “Gul Kadal,” she started. “I am very impressed by what you have achieved here. I will have to investigate the matter more to gather proofs, but if the Skarrats really wish to stay being a part of the Union, then we have no right to simple reject them.”

    “What kind of proofs do you need?”

    “I honestly don't know. However we must be able to prove that the Skarrats aren't just people, who are too terrified to defy us and are forced to stay. I need something that would convince politicians that the Skarrat Prefecture is not a Bajor.”

    “I understand. I think you could talk to our officials, local officials, who could provide their testimonies. I can also provide you with some documents, which prove that the Cardassians and the Skarrats live together and without problems. The Skarrats adopted our education system and our children and their young go to schools together.”

    Jarol couldn't stop her smile. Kadal spoke of his adopted home with such passion that she believed every his word. She only hoped the Federation would believe too and not accuse them of falsifying data to keep one of their annexed worlds.

    “I'll tell you one thing, Gul Jarol,” Kadal continued. “If Cardassia abandons this place, I will not abandon it. I will stay here and try my best to take care of these people.”

    “This sounds almost too beautiful to be true,” she said.

    “Do you think we, Cardassians, are worse than we really are?”

    “Sometimes I do,” she smiled sadly.

    “Some of us are good people. I have many good people here. I hope everyone currently present in this office belongs to that group too.”

    “All right, Gul Kadal,” she rose and so did Marret and Brenok. “I will file my report. I cannot make any promises, as it's not me, who makes big decisions, but I will do everything in my power to help the Skarrats stay with us, if that indeed is their wish.”

    “Thank you, Gul Jarol.”

    The three Cardassians left the Prefect's office.

    “And what do you say about that?” Marret asked.

    “Do you really think they live here in peace, as one society?” she asked him.

    “I had scanned the planet as soon as I arrived here. I found nothing suspicious here. It's a quiet, calm place. Mines are abandoned. Cities are crowded with Skarrats and scattered Cardassians. Offices are filled with Skarrat personnel. I've even found Obsidian Order files on Cardassians, who assimilated with locals and started families with them. Kadal had been investigated as a possible traitor, but they'd never found anything to accuse him of. It's confirmed that he requested trade shipments. The Skarrats are skilled artists and they sell fabrics, art and other goods for resources and food. He really made it work,” Marret was clearly impressed.

    “I wonder if the Feds would be satisfied.”

    “Frankly, I don't care what the Feds would think,” Marret snorted. “Ghemor made a mistake, listening to them. He started a chain reaction. He gives them one thing and from now on they will keep asking for another, and then another, and another, and in the end we would be just another Federation world, listening to their orders,” his voice was full of bitterness. “I don't see myself wearing a Starfleet uniform.”

    “Neither do I,” she agreed. “It would press on neck ridges.”

    They laughed.

    “Thank you for coming, Jarol. I wasn't sure how to deal with this situation. Orders were clear. Situation is not.”

    “It hardly is recently.”

    They bade farewell and Jarol and Brenok returned to the Roumar.

    “You know,” Brenok said, when they were walking back to the bridge from the transporter room, “Kapoor and Ullmann could be assigned to the investigation team. If their signatures would be under the report, the Feds would have to believe that.”

    “Unless the Feds would think we tortured their officers to get those signatures.”

    “They wouldn't.”

    “Are you sure? They see us all as monsters. Even I have problems with accepting Kadal's words at face value, and I know there are great Cardassians among us. The Feds think we all are murderers, unless our name is Ghemor.”

    “I still suggest to include them in the investigation.”

    “Do that,” she agreed. “Even if their superiors won't believe it, these two will see it with their own eyes.”

    Brenok smiled.

    Gul Kadal was very helpful in providing documentation and also invited Jarol to visit the capital city. She accepted the invitation and on the third day of their investigation she and Kadal went for a walk.

    The city was... flat. There were very few tall buildings and if there were any, they resembled Cardassian architecture more than anything else. The Cardassians walked without guards and at first it distressed her, but she soon realised that no one paid any special attention to them. Some passers by nodded their greeting to Kadal, but most of them behaved like no aliens were present among them.

    “It's hot here,” Jarol commented.

    “Indeed. It's hotter than even Cardassia.”

    “Are they poikilothermic?”

    “They are. Would you like to sample some of local fruits?”

    “Why not?” she smiled.

    He took her to some kind of dessert shop. They sat at a table outside and he chose some fruit desserts for them. While they were waiting two Skarrats passed by the shop. There wouldn't be anything special about them if not their clothes. Their garments were clearly made of fabric, but the resemblance to a Cardassian armour couldn't be accidental.

    “That's interesting,” she commented.

    Kadal glanced at them and then back at her.

    “Yes. About thirty years ago they adopted our design for their uniforms. Those men here were local security force, and they were wearing their duty uniforms.”

    A waiter brought their order, so she grabbed a long spoon and tried a bit of an orange-yellow fruit. It was sweet, juicy and quite tasty.

    She spent whole afternoon with Kadal and she had to admit she enjoyed it.

    “Sir, Gul Daset wants to talk to you,” Karama reported as soon as she appeared back on the bridge. “In private.”

    “My office,” she said and headed for her room.

    “How's the situation?” he asked.

    “Fascinating,” she replied. “I should have full report this evening,” she could still taste local fruits and beverages in her mouth.

    “Good. However this is not the reason I contacted you.”

    “So what is?”

    “I will transfer Brenok to my office. I have already sent him notification--”

    “You what?!”

    “You can't--”

    “I won't allow it!”

    “You have no choice, Jarol,” his voice got stronger. “This is an official order.”


    “I have received a report regarding his medical condition. He cannot stay in active duty.”

    “He is fine!”

    “No, he's not. And you know it. You probably know more about it than I do. I'm transferring him and that's final.”




    “Jarol!” a shadow of anger appeared in his voice.

    “You can't. I need him.”

    “That's an order.”

    Her lips created a thin line. She was furious.

    “His medical condition is only a pretext, isn't it?” she said eventually.

    “I need him more than you do. I need his fresh mind. I need his soft advices. He's the only officer, who thinks more like a civilian than a soldier, that I know of. I need him, Jarol.”

    “Then ask for his advice, when you need it.”


    “I won't let you take him.”


    “I won't!”

    “And what can you do?”

    “Don't do this. You need him in active duty more than his advices.”


    “Because his presence represents something. He's a symbol of something. We need him for big things, we need him to stay on command track. You know that. I have plans for him, big plans, and transferring him would ruin everything.”

    “I need him to prepare everything for the Shift. I need his insight.”

    “We need him to fulfil an important role after the Shift. He must stay where he is now.”

    “I can always transfer him back.”

    “After relieving him because of his irreparable medical condition?”

    “Damn it, Jarol!”

    “Leave him alone.”

    Daset disconnected and she wasn't if sure she won or lost. She hit the desk with her first.
  4. Gul Re'jal

    Gul Re'jal Commodore Commodore

    Jun 28, 2010
    Gul Re'jal is suspecting she's on the wrong space
    A chime. She glanced at the door and saw Zamarran and Kapoor standing outside. She allowed them to enter. Did they see her hitting the desk?

    “Lieutenant Kapoor has something to report, sir,” Zamarran spoke.

    “What is it?”

    “Gul, I have been collecting data regarding Skarrat history, especially the newest history, related to Cardassians.”


    “And I found something very disturbing.”

    The Terran handed her a padd. She took and activated it.

    “I had searched local archives and found out that the previous Prefect had been executed according to the local law. I found it quite odd, so I tried to find the reason of his execution.”

    “Did you find it?” Jarol raised her eyes from the padd to look at her, since Kapoor did not continue.

    “Yes, I did. You're not going to like it, Gul.”

    “Go on.”

    “There used to be resistance on the planet. Every member of it was found and executed by Cardassian forces. Almost one fourth of the planet's population was wiped out. That called the Central Command's attention to the Prefecture and the Prefect, and they decided to send a new Prefect, Gul Kadal, to replace the old one. Gul Kadal brought the old Prefect to justice, local justice, for crimes against the Skarrats.”

    Jarol was speechless. She wasn't sure what angered her more: the gravity of the revelation, or the fact that Kadal hid it all.

    “I suppose you will place it in your report too,” she said.

    “Gul, my task was to investigate the current situation and to find proofs that the Skarrats really don't want Cardassians to leave. I went deeper in my research than the task required, and yes, I have found disturbing information, however it was long time ago and Gul Kadal did his best to fix the situation. He was in trouble after that and I am not sure how come the Obsidian Order didn't take care of him, but he still is here and he made it work. The history is history. If the Skarrats could forgive the Cardassians, then who are we to tell them they can't live together in peace any longer?”

    “If you don't see it as relevant and would not include it in your report, why do you tell me all this?”

    “Because if someone checks our report and finds that information is missing, it's better for you to know about it too, instead of being faced with it by someone else, by someone opposing you.”

    Jarol liked her way of thinking.

    “Thank you for your report, Lieutenant. If that's all, you are dismissed.”

    Kapoor turned on her heel and left the office. Zamarran lingered for a short moment to exchange weak smiles with Jarol and then left too.

    The Gul hailed the Prefect.

    “You lied to me!” she hissed.

    He sighed, but didn't say anything.

    “You lied!”

    “I did not tell you the whole truth, but I did not lie either.”

    “Why didn't you tell me? I didn't come here as your enemy.”

    “Because I feared you wouldn't understand. No one does. If not my cousin, who was in Central Command at that time, I would have been executed. Prefect Markor was a monster and a sadist and he deserved what he got. He would have committed genocide if I wouldn't stop him. No one deserves that. No one!”

    “How come you can now live in peace with them? Or rather how come they can live with you in peace now?”

    “I begged for their forgiveness and they are forgiving people. That's why I want to live among them. They are warm, friendly, passionate and wonderful people. They don't spy on each other. They don't start wars. They don't attack and torture others. They share what little they have, instead of fighting over it.”

    It sounded like he was not listing good things about the Skarrats, but bad things about the Cardassians.

    “You should have told me,” she said, her anger subsiding.

    “And what would you do?”

    “I would know. I have to know everything if I'm to represent your case. I shouldn't be surprised by this revelation by someone, who would insist we should abandon Skarrat, and would use it as their argument,” she was surprised hearing herself repeating Kapoor's words.

    “All right. Hiding it was a mistake. What will you do now?”

    “Now I will ask you to be completely honest with me. No secrets.”

    “No secrets,” a faint smile appeared on his face.

    Did he also feel it was highly inappropriate for her to scold him like that? After all he was much older and he outranked her.

    “Now, is there anything else I should know about?” she asked calmly.

    “No, not really. Everything else I've told you about is the truth. And I don't have any more secrets. Hell, it wasn't even my secret.”

    “Gul Kadal, you did something unbelievable here,” she said after a short moment of silence, not hiding her admiration.

    “It didn't happen over night, but I'm glad it worked out,” he smiled. “And I'm really glad you understand it.”

    “Cardassia is not what you think it used to be,” she said.

    “So I've heard. I'm just not sure where it's sailing now.”

    “Neither am I. But I try to help to steer it in the right direction.”

    “Good luck with that.”

    They could use someone like Kadal, a Prefect with a heart and conscience.

    “I'm sorry I snapped.”

    “That's all right, Gul Jarol. I should have trusted you and told you everything.”

    “I think we are finished here and I'll return to Cardassia. I'll keep you apprised of the situation.”

    “I'll appreciate that, thank you.”

    She disconnected.

    She was just about to leave the office and enter the bridge, when she noticed Ullmann heading for her door. She waited for the woman and then let her in.

    “What is it?” she expected more revelations regarding the Skarrat, but Ullmann stood there in front of her desk with face expression full of doubt and fear.

    “Well?” she tried to encourage the woman, removing the harshness from her voice and speaking more like to her son than her officer.

    “I... I would like to file a complain, Gul.”

    “A complain?” now that was unusual. “What kind of complain?”

    “It's about Gil Karama. About his behaviour.”

    She looked through the closed door to glance at her comm officer, who was busy at his console.

    “What did he do?”

    “He...” she lowered her head.

    Jarol observed her for a moment and then an unthinkable thought appeared in her mind. She knew Karama for years, and she would never expect him to do anything indecent, but this woman was clearly shaken and scared.

    “What did he do?” Jarol asked, hoping she was wrong. “Did he hurt you?”

    Ullmann shook her head, confusing Jarol.

    “He... not yet, but I think he is going to. He talks to me in such a way... He suggests he would...” she started sniffing.

    “Calm down. When did it start?”

    “Right after I arrived. That first day. And then it got only worse.”

    Jarol thought for a while. It was hard to believe that Karama, of all officers Karama, would behave like this. However it was clear the woman was terrified and she was sure there was a reason. For a moment she considered confronting them both, but it could be too stressful for Ullman, so she dropped the idea.

    “Go back to your quarters. I'll talk to him and he is going to be punished accordingly.”

    Ullmann raised her head and looked up at Jarol.

    “Thank you, Gul,” she whispered.


    She waited for the Lieutenant to leave the bridge and then stood on the threshold of her office.

    “Karama, my office!” she boomed.

    He looked at her, then got up and went toward her. She waited for the door to close.

    “What did you do or what did you tell Ullmann?” she hissed and didn't hide her anger.

    “I didn't do anything.”

    “How about the latter part of my question?”

    “When she arrived here, she was full of prejudice. I was nice. I complemented her several times, but each time she reacted like I said something lewd. I said 'I like your hair' and she heard 'I'll come to your quarters and take you by force tonight',” he got agitated. “She assumed that I am, we are, we, Cardassians, are all rapists.”

    “So why didn't you stop talking to her? Why didn't you just leave her alone?”

    “I wanted to punish her. I wanted her to live with her prejudice, with her fear.”

    “Karama!” she was furious, she wanted to strike him.

    “I wanted to teach her a lesson not to assume bad things about people, about us. Yes, I had been making some... nasty comments, but I would never act upon them. I don't even find her attractive!”

    “And do you seriously think that she considers us nice and friendly now? Instead of proving her wrong, you only strengthened her wrong impression.”

    He had no reply and she wasn't sure why he fell silent. Was it because he understood his mistake or because he realised how angry it made her?

    “You will stop talking to her,” she ordered.

    “I already did,” he said quietly.

    “I didn't finish! You will stop talking to her, not a word, not a whisper. Don't even look at her. From now on you are assigned to duty on lower decks for two weeks,” until now she had thought she'd never use Daset's punishment, but in this case it seemed appropriate. “Your pay will be suspended for one month. I will put a reprimand into your file and you can forget about a promotion for long time.”

    She was in the middle of preparing necessary documentation for promoting him to a Glinn.

    He listened to her, his face was expressing confusion and worry. She paused and then finished – she spoke calmly and quietly. “You disappointed me, Gil Karama.” Regret. Confusion on his face changed to regret. “Dismissed,” she barked and he left the office, his eyes on the deck. She followed him to the door to call Brenok to come inside.

    “What is the problem?” he asked, glancing curiously at Karama. It was clear that the Gil was shattered.

    “You will reschedule Lieutenant Ullmann's duty. Move her to the night shift. Make sure she has no common duty with Karama. I don't want them in the same room ever.”

    “What happened?”

    “Don't ask, I have to calm down first.”

    “That serious? All right, I'll change the duty roster. Do you want me to notify her?”

    “No, I'll do it myself. Give her one day off duty tomorrow and make her duty start tomorrow evening.”

    “I will.”


    He knew better than to press her; he left her office.

    She accessed the database to edit Karama's file, but closed it without applying any changes. She decided to do it when she cools down. Anger was not the best advisor in command decisions, Gul Corak had often repeated that and she tried to follow that advice, although it was never as hard as this time.

    She went to Ullmann's quarters. Both Terran women where present.

    “Gul Jarol, we didn't expect you,” Kapoor said.

    “I wanted to talk to Ullmann.”

    “Yes, sir?”

    “Your duty will be changed to the night shift and you will not share duty time with Gil Karama.”

    “Thank you, Gul,” it was the first time Jarol saw Ullmann smiling.

    “Gil Karama has been disciplined. If he bothers you again, report it immediately and I will deal with it again, severely.”

    “Gul,” Kapoor spoke.


    “Gil Karama never meant any harm--”

    “You knew about it?!” Jarol asked her, her tone shifting from soft to harsher.

    “I asked him to stop and he promised he would,” she answered.

    “You knew about it and you didn't report it?” Jarol asked again.

    “I didn't think... I...” Kapoor was clearly confused.

    “I don't know what kind of regulations are aboard Federation starships, Lieutenant, but here is Cardassia. We expect our officers to keep some standard. I expect my officers to conduct themselves exemplary. This was far from exemplary. It was your duty to report such outrageous behaviour. As a Cardassian, who you are on this ship, or a law-abiding person, if you prefer. As an officer. As a colleague,” she glanced at Ullmann and then back at Kapoor. “And as a woman. ”

    “Yes, Gul. I didn't think it was that serious. I'm sorry, it won't happen again.”

    “I hope so.”

    Jarol left, but there was one thought that rang in her head. Karama had said he had stopped his comments. Kapoor had said she had asked him to stop. Had he stopped because she asked him to?

    Did it matter?

  5. TerokNor

    TerokNor Captain Captain

    Mar 26, 2010
    Very interessting Chapter. That Prefect is lovly and the situation between the Terran and the Gil was..well..interessting. Though I have to say I also felt sorry for the Gil, getting all that punishment. He did behave wrong, but still... I hope Joral will not put a reprimant in his file. And certainly hope Brenok stays with her on the ship.

  6. Nerys Ghemor

    Nerys Ghemor Vice Admiral Admiral

    Aug 4, 2008
    Cardăsa Terăm--Nerys Ghemor
    I think there had to be SOME punishment for the gil, though. Depending on how Jarol feels about Karama, there may be a way to do it that won't permanently destroy his career. I hope she remembers how she felt when Gul Dukat and then Ahal tried to do that to her. Now, in HER case they were both absolutely wrong and had no right to do what they did to her.

    Still, if Gil Karama is someone who can learn from what has happened, here's what I might do. I might find some way to punish him where it doesn't go into his file. Withholding the promotion is severe enough punishment, but if it's still early enough that she never submitted any paperwork, then no one ever has to know why she waited until later.

    I think that Jarol is justified in not promoting Karama, though. From a military standpoint, Karama has demonstrated that he is unable to put the good of his mission (which of course in this case means not harassing the Federation officers) ahead of his personal problems. He had the option to either say to them something like, "I find the way you are treating me offensive, because it makes me feel like I've done something wrong when I never meant to," or if he wasn't comfortable talking to them alone, he could have told the glinns or Gul Jarol and asked for them to sit in on a meeting between them, to settle the matter. But I do think that an incident like this speaks to one's ability to handle a higher rank.

    For the Federation officers, I think it will make an impression that Gul Jarol WAS concerned about what was happening, and that the standard for exemplary behavior includes NOT indulging in petty harassment and grievances.

    As far as Jarol herself, I am glad to see that she is starting to really recognize that there are times when she needs to stop and let her head clear before she acts.

    About the Skarrat situation...I think it will be hard to convince the Federation of what's happening there, especially when the genocide is found out. Jarol is probably making a serious mistake not putting that in the report, because I think even Alon Ghemor discovering it would be bad enough. Ghemor isn't a cruel man, but I would not be surprised if he fired Jarol for lying to him, if he felt she had proven his sense that he shouldn't trust her. more note about the humans. I wonder if now that she knows their memories don't work the way Cardassian ones do, she'll start thinking they're inferior? :( We don't want her to learn the wrong lessons here.
  7. Gul Re'jal

    Gul Re'jal Commodore Commodore

    Jun 28, 2010
    Gul Re'jal is suspecting she's on the wrong space
    Jarol certainly doesn't want to ruin Karama's career, especially since he made a mistake, but it wasn't anything really serious with grave consequences. It made her angry, yes, but she was more disappointed.

    The Skarrats, Ghemor and the Federation... She is going to do something about this situation and I think no one expects her to do that.

    The Prefect was nice, but still had his secrets. Do you think he told Jarol everything? I'm not so sure, it's still too beautiful to be true ;)

    No, not really. She'll just wonder how they can function forgetting everything all the time :lol:
    Her opinion of humans improves. Her experiences with Captain Andric and Dr. Kirkland were positive enough not to think low or badly about them. She has no love for the Federation, but she can see people as people, not a notion of an interstellar power.

    Thanks for (still) reading :)

    I'm going to post the first chapter of the other story soon - the Feds' arrival from Amrita Kapoor's point of view. It's ready, but I still don't have a title :confused:
  8. Nerys Ghemor

    Nerys Ghemor Vice Admiral Admiral

    Aug 4, 2008
    Cardăsa Terăm--Nerys Ghemor
    That's why I'm thinking the standard of evidence would have to be very, VERY high if Ghemor and the rest of the galaxy were ever going to believe it.

    Sometime, I may put into a story what my own Glinn Daro concludes about it...

    You're welcome! :)

    I look forward to it! :)

    BTW, what do you think your Cardassians are, biologically speaking?

    This is what I tend to think they are...
  9. Gul Re'jal

    Gul Re'jal Commodore Commodore

    Jun 28, 2010
    Gul Re'jal is suspecting she's on the wrong space
    I look forward to it :)

    They identify themselves with reptiles, but they are an evolved form, so something quite close to therapsids, I would think. Evolution on Cardassia Prime took a little different course than on Earth, so I don't try to find an exact equivalent here on Earth for them. They are more than lizards, but their evolution doesn't exactly head toward mammalian lifeforms (although they share a lot of similar or the same features).
  10. Nerys Ghemor

    Nerys Ghemor Vice Admiral Admiral

    Aug 4, 2008
    Cardăsa Terăm--Nerys Ghemor
    I tend to think that we could have become much more like Cardassians ourselves, if not for the P-T extinction. That's what killed off Earth's therapsids (except for their mammalian descendants)...

    I have to think there are key traits in common with mammals, though, if we assume they give live birth. While you can never be SURE of it in the Trekiverse, I don't mean to be offensive but I have always assumed that Cardassian women don't just have breasts for show. They may not "sexualize" them the way humans do, but I think they are used for the natural purpose--a purpose that generally implies live birth.
  11. Gul Re'jal

    Gul Re'jal Commodore Commodore

    Jun 28, 2010
    Gul Re'jal is suspecting she's on the wrong space
    I think also the fact of existing Bajoran-Cardassian hybrids is a good hint that Cardassians don't lay eggs.

    The evolution in my universe "perfected" my reptiles, just like our evolution "perfected" us as mammals. I didn't give it a lot of thought yet, as very little of my story takes place on Cardassia Prime, but in general reptiles on the planet are highly developed (as opposed to those species, which did not evolve and are more like lizards and turtles), so Cardassians - as the sentient lifeforms - aren't the only highly evolved reptiles (or whatever we call them).

    Mar'kuu were reptiles too, and also highly evolved - I imagine they were related to Cardassians similar way dolphins or whales are related to humans.
  12. Nerys Ghemor

    Nerys Ghemor Vice Admiral Admiral

    Aug 4, 2008
    Cardăsa Terăm--Nerys Ghemor
    Hm...I'm not sure I'd consider being more mammalian in some ways to be "perfected." Your Skarrats might argue that point! :D :lol:

    It's so interesting what different ideas we have, though! My Cardassians actually get insulted by a comparison to reptiles! :cardie: (Which is not surprising given that mammalians tend to make that comparison in a derisive manner--claiming they don't have feelings, etc.)

    They think of themselves as neither...they would say they have characteristics that belong to both groups, but they think of themselves as something completely separate.

    BTW...can you draw a mar'kuu? Please??? :D
  13. Gul Re'jal

    Gul Re'jal Commodore Commodore

    Jun 28, 2010
    Gul Re'jal is suspecting she's on the wrong space
    By "perfected" I mean the natures way of making sure species have higher chances of survival - both as species and as each individual (it's safer to have life birth and take care of a young than lay eggs and abandon them, hoping at least half of young would survive). The Skarrats take care of their eggs ;)

    I think if your Cardassians would be compared to therapsids in an insulting matter, it wouldn't be more or less insulting than calling them reptiles.

    My Cardassians don't mind being compared to reptiles in a neutral way. You could probably hear someone calling their loved one "my sweet lizard" or something like that ;)

    I can try to draw a mar'kuu, but am not sure if I would be able to draw exactly what I have in my head. But I'll try :)
  14. Nerys Ghemor

    Nerys Ghemor Vice Admiral Admiral

    Aug 4, 2008
    Cardăsa Terăm--Nerys Ghemor
    That could be an interesting bit in the story right there, to find out what they do!

    They wouldn't like it--but I think that to them, calling them reptiles isn't just mean, it's ignorant and it shows that the person using the word doesn't know anything about them and doesn't care enough to. So the term itself has become offensive to them.

    Cool! :)
  15. Gul Re'jal

    Gul Re'jal Commodore Commodore

    Jun 28, 2010
    Gul Re'jal is suspecting she's on the wrong space
  16. Gul Re'jal

    Gul Re'jal Commodore Commodore

    Jun 28, 2010
    Gul Re'jal is suspecting she's on the wrong space
    The Shift
    2379 (2379)​

    She donned her armour. Her new armour. Her silver armour.

    She was terrified. She was a girl from a small village in a middle of a desert; she still didn't speak the Union language well and she sincerely doubted she ever would. How was she supposed to do what was expected of her? How was she supposed to know what was right and the best?

    She looked at Laran, who observed her with widely opened eyes. She smiled to him, but his face expression didn't change – he stared at her like hypnotised. His memory training had started a few months ago and she wondered if this picture – of his mother standing in front of a mirror and looking at herself with disbelief in her eyes – would burn in his memory forever.

    It would in hers.

    [RIGHT]Seven months earlier[/RIGHT]

    Alon Ghemor greeted Jarol with a smile. She eyed him suspiciously and then weakly smiled back.

    “Please sit,” he invited her to take a chair on the business side of his desk and then sat in his chair.

    “This rod contains all information we have gathered during our investigations,” he handed him a data rod, which he took and immediately inserted into a reader. “It contains my assessment of the situation, reports of each Gul, who investigated a system assigned to him, and all additional information we have found, which can be even vaguely related to the subject.”

    “And about the plans?”

    “I suggest to start from those places, in which we... inflicted more suffering.” He looked at her a little surprised, and then his eyes returned to his screen. “My proposition is included on the data rod. There is one exception, though.”

    “The Skarrats,” he said.

    “That's right. They do not want us to leave them.”

    “The withdrawal must be full and complete.”

    “That's the difference. For them we wouldn't withdraw, we would abandon them.”


    “Maybe, but I see the difference.”

    “Why do you care?” he looked at her again, but this time his gaze stayed on her face.

    “Gul Kadal asked me to personally make sure that you understand their unique position.”

    “Gul Jarol, we withdraw from every world, no exceptions.”

    “But they don't want that! They are dependant on our resources shipments and stopping them would have tragic repercussions.”

    “We don't have to stop the trade only because they wouldn't be a part of the Union.”

    “But we would have no obligation to defend them in case of trouble. Our people would be recalled from their planet.”

    “The Federation made it clear, Gul Jarol. We have to withdraw from all occupied worlds, without exceptions.”

    “Damn it, Ghemor!” she jumped up and leaned her hands on his desk, towering over him. He glared at her and she sat down. “Sorry,” she muttered, took a breath and finished in a calm voice. “What is more important? What the Feds say or what our own denizens want?”

    “The decision is final.”

    She didn't say anything else. There was nothing she could say to convince him. It wasn't his mind she would have to change and she had no way of reaching those, who made the decision.

    “Are you going to send those files to the Federation?” she asked.

    He looked up at her. “Why would I?”

    “I don't know why, but there's a lot of things that I don't understand why you do them. I ask, because there is some sensitive information, which I'd rather not hand to the Federation.”

    “Like the massacres on the Skarrats?”

    “No, like detailed information on our military strength,” she should rather say 'weakness'. “You may consider them your best friends, but giving them this kind of data would be foolish.”

    “I don't intend to be foolish,” he replied.

    “Is that all?”

    “Yes. I will contact you if I have additional questions.”

    “Acceptable,” she nodded. Then she stood and looked at him. “Regarding the Skarrats,” he looked at her again. “I will make it public that you refuse their request to stay within the Union, following your Federation... decision-makers,” she intended to say 'masters', but wanted to keep it serious and civil.

    “It that a threat?”

    “No. It's a courtesy of informing you of my plans. Prefect Kadal and Subprefect Zarr would officially back up my position.” She had already talked to the Gul and the highest Skarrat official about that. She had promised them to do everything in her power to keep the matters status quo, but seemed like the Castellan didn't care about their wishes and it would be impossible to take care of it any other way. She couldn't stop him from withdrawing from Skarrat, but she could make him pay for his decision. Losing support is the worst punishment for a politician, whose position depends on people's votes. He wanted the Federation democracy, he can have it.

    She turned and headed for the door. He did not call after her, so she left. Now she had to convey the bad news to Gul Kadal.

    She returned to the Roumar.

    “Sir, can we talk in private?” Brenok asked her when she entered the bridge.

    She nodded and they went to her office.

    “Daset has approved your plans regarding my future,” he said.

    “That's good.”

    “I was not aware you had any plans regarding my future.”

    She looked at him. Was he disappointed?

    “I don't think I'm ready for this,” he said after a moment.

    “The fact that you think you're not ready is the best proof you are the best choice.”

    “But... what if I fail?” he asked quietly.

    She moved closer to him, entering his personal space, gazed into his eyes and said quietly, but seriously. “I am sure you won't fail. You represent everything we need in that position. No one else can do it.”

    “But I'm only thirty-three!”

    “And you sometimes are wiser than Tarkan, Daset, Jotrel and I combined,” she smiled.

    “No, I'm not!”

    “Arenn, you have a heart and you have never let anyone convince you otherwise. Most of us had been trained to forget that we had hearts and we realised we still had them when the Jem'Hadar slaughtered our families and friends. The risk is that we could forget again. You won't.”

    “I don't want a desk job,” his protest was much weaker.

    “Arenn,” she laughed. “You will be the one who decides who sits behind a desk. You don't want to sit behind a desk, you won't have to. No one would be in power to order you to.”

    “And how did you convince Tarkan to agree to this?”

    She smiled deviously. “Actually, the little speech about hearts is Tarkan's.”

    “W... what?”

    “Unbelievable, isn't it?”

    “What will he do?”

    “He wants the troops education. He wants to make sure we have more officers like you than like him... or me.”

    “There is nothing wrong with you.”

    “But I'm not as good as Corak.”

    “No one is as good as Corak,” Brenok smiled and she wondered if the Glinn wasn't actually heading there, to be as good or maybe even better than their late Gul.

    Within her whole career Jarol didn't talk to as many Guls, as within last few months. She searched her memory for decent people she had met in the course of her military career, traced them and contacted. Too many of them were dead; either executed by the Dominion, or died on the front, or in Jem'Hadar massacres. Luckily, some were still there.

    She probed their political loyalties and opinions. She searched for a shadow of a chance they could join, support or at least not interfere with the Mar'kuu Group's plans. Their support and co-operation was most welcomed, as the Group needed as many troops as it was possible. Ironically, the more people they had, the safer it would be.

    She knew Jotrel, Daset, Tarkan and others were doing the same thing. Every week they were adding or deleting names from their lists. There were some people they could trust, some that they weren't sure about, and some, who didn't want to have anything to do with them. There were also some Cardassians, with whom they didn't want anything to do with.

    The most difficult part of their task was keeping it secret. While it was impossible to completely cover their intentions, they hoped no one would know the real reason behind their actions. Officially they were contacting other Guls to prepare a full report on the Guard status. Unofficially they probed and poked each Gul, asking them questions, first cautiously and then, depending on a particular situation, bolder and more detailed, or dropping the whole matter completely.

    The trade with the Ferengi started bringing real fruits and Jotrel suggested to widen the scope of the trade. He was in process of preparing full proposition, which targeted the loss of resources, caused by their withdrawal from annexed worlds.

    They knew they couldn't rush things, they couldn't allow themselves to be sloppy, but they all felt things on Cardassia were going the wrong way, and headed there too fast. Initially they planned their preparations to take about two years, but when Alon Ghemor agreed to the Federation demand of limiting the Cardassian military strength to a particular number of ships – which was supposed to ensure safety of the quadrant, as the Cardassians were still considered too aggressive to trust them, at least according to the Federation Council – they knew they couldn't wait any longer. The Feds either wanted to make sure the Cardassian Union would stay weak and be ready for conquer, or they knew there was something happening behind the doors to Guls' offices and wanted to stop it, before it would blow in their faces.

    Two years time shrank into six months. They could wait no longer.
  17. Gul Re'jal

    Gul Re'jal Commodore Commodore

    Jun 28, 2010
    Gul Re'jal is suspecting she's on the wrong space
    “Do we have all the Fourth Order's Guls on our side?” Daset asked.

    “Yes,” Jotrel confirmed.

    “We also have the First Order and the Third Order to support us,” Tarkan added, pointing to Gul Marret and Gul Relta.

    “What if the Directorate decides to oppose?” Jarol asked.

    “Hopefully they won't. Otherwise...” Daset didn't finish, but she knew. A civil war.

    “Let's go through this again,” Daset said. “Jotrel?”

    “First Battalion will secure all military outposts in the orbit and on the planet, including the Academy. The main goal is to separate command from troops until we can be sure of their loyalty. They either join us or are expelled from the Guard, effective immediately. No force is to be used, unless it's absolutely necessary.”


    “Battalion Two Task Force One will secure the government building, relieving the Castellan and his people off duty. They are to be escorted back home to ensure their safety. Task Force Two will secure the capitol, the remaining Task Forces have been assigned a city and its Prefectures each. The civilians are to be escorted homes for their own safety in case the Directorate decides to use troops still loyal to them.”


    “Battalion Three will secure the Directorate main building and home arrest all its members. They have to be separated and not in contact with anyone to limit the risk of issuing any orders to their troops.”


    “The First Order will enforce Battalion four-two in securing the city. Everyone was instructed not to use force against civilians. Two Task Forces will stand by in orbit in case the Directorate decides to attack from space.”


    “The Third Order is spread between most populated colonies. They will send several patrols to control the situation, but are mostly to observe and possibly defend the borders, if a word comes out and a foreign power tries to interfere.”

    “Remember” Daset looked at all Guls' faces, lingering on each for a moment. “We do not fight against our denizens. The casualties must be kept to the minimum. I realise hoping for no casualties would be unrealistic, but warn your people that civilians will not understand what is happening and some of them could feel defence is necessary. Everyone must be escorted home. I want empty streets. If the Directorate answers with force, we will fight them. But only them.”

    Everyone nodded.

    “What about other Orders?” Daset asked.

    “The Second Order is stationed near the Breen border,” Tarkan answered. “The rest is in chaos. They are still being regrouped and Ghemor obviously doesn't think it's a priority to bring order to our military.”

    “Of course he doesn't. The Federation doesn't want a strong Cardassian army,” Marret muttered.

    “So they either would join us or wouldn't,” Daset didn't like this uncertainty.

    “What do we do with those, who don't support us, but not fight us?” Jarol asked.

    “Anyone, who is not on our side, is to be dismissed from the active service. They would be assigned different roles and their troops would be reassigned to the Restoration Program,” Tarkan explained.

    Daset put his hands on his desk and leaned on them. He took a deep breath and then quietly said: “For Cardassia.”

    Jarol returned to her warship. Brenok and Ma'Kan waited for her in the transporter room.

    “Are our orders confirmed?” Brenok asked.

    “They are. Are your teams ready?”

    “Yes, sir,” the Glinn nodded. “Government officials' houses are secured and ready to accept their tenants. Transporter dampeners in place.”

    Jarol looked at Ma'Kan.

    “I have coordinated with other warships to simultaneously beam small troops to each floor of the main government building to minimise any resistance. The guards on duty will be disarmed and sent back home, even if they declare their loyalty to us. We cannot afford to trust anyone at this point.”

    “Good thinking,” Jarol approved. “How much time?”

    Brenok checked his chronometer.

    “Fifteen minutes. The virus Jotrel and I had created should kick in in ten minutes and it should eat the defence systems of the government buildings within three minutes.”

    “Should,” she repeated.

    “There was no way to test the program, so we can't be one hundred percent certain.”

    “What is going to happen if the virus doesn't work?”

    “Our transporter patterns would be scattered around whole Lakat.”

    What a wonderful vision, she thought bitterly.

    “Go to your posts and wait there.”

    Brenok left the transporter room and Ma'Kan stood by the door. She waved to someone outside, and a group of militiamen jogged inside and went to the transporter pad. Jarol joined them and so did Ma'Kan.

    The Gul was nervous. She had an impression everyone could hear her heart beating. She glanced at the faces of the men around her. They seemed calm like a rock. She wondered if they were realising what was ahead of them. She knew they understood their orders, but did they know how important it was? And what would failure mean? But they wouldn't fail her, would they?

    Garesh Dalar, who commanded militia troops aboard the Roumar, nodded to her and somehow she felt reassured.

    “It's time,” the transporter Garesh said crisply.

    “Energize,” she ordered and the group disappeared in an orange light.

    They materialised in front of the door to the Castellan's office. The guards there were so surprised by their unexpected appearance that before they had a chance to do anything, they were disarmed and beamed away.

    Guards down the corridor however had enough time to react. A few shots went Jarol's team way, but all missed.

    “Drop your weapons!” someone there shouted.

    She pushed her way among her people, going forward to face the guards on duty. One of her men tried to shield her with his body, but she shook her head. He moved to a side, but still part of him was in front of her – he didn't intend to allow her to put herself in danger.

    “Garesh, we are not your enemies,” she shouted toward the other guards. “Please let us disarm you and you will be sent home.”

    They uncertainly looked at each other, wondering what the others would decide to do. They hesitated and she took at as a good sign.

    “We appreciate your conduct and following your orders, however we have our orders,” she continued. “If you disarm yourselves now, nothing will happen to you and, hopefully, you would be able to return to duty soon. Decide now.”

    One of guards put his weapon on the floor and went toward them. The Garesh, who protected Jarol, tensed, but once he realised there was no trick on the other man's part, he relaxed. Others hesitated. Precious seconds were passing and Jarol feared guards inside the Castellan's office would soon realise something was happening behind the door.

    “We give up,” the Garesh, who spoke earlier, said, putting his weapon away.

    “No! Traitor!” another pointed his weapon at the guard as shot him in the back.

    “Noooo!” Jarol started toward the fallen man, her guard following her closely and shooting the attacker.

    She crouched by the shot man, but he was dead. She felt sorry and disappointed. It's not how she wanted this to happen.

    She shook her bleakness away and rose. She had no time to mourn now.

    “Take care of his body,” she told her guard and looked at the rest. “Go, go, go!” she ordered energetically, waving toward the office door.

    In the meantime either someone notified the guards in the Castellan's office that something was happening outside, or they heard the noises, as the door opened and two men ran outside, phasers in their hands. However they weren't prepared to what they would encounter and they were quickly disarmed in result. Six more of Jarol's team took care of the guards inside. One was fighting them unrelentingly, but was overwhelmed, two offered only weak resistance and the last one gave up immediately. Another group ran inside to secure the area and make sure there were no more guards hiding in adjacent rooms. Finally Jarol herself entered the office with the remainder of her small army. Her men took positions, securing the whole room.

    There were two men inside: Alon Ghemor and one more Cardassian, whom she didn't know. Two militiamen went directly to Ghemor's desk and pointed their riffles at his head. Two more did the same in regard of the other man. Ghemor was standing when she entered, but he slowly sat, while she approached him. The other man didn't move, but he attentively observed the situation. Jarol stood between her soldiers and admired the Castellan's calm demeanour.
    “Am I going to be executed?” he asked.

    “No,” she shook her head. “You have two options. One: you continue your service as the Castellan, but you take orders from us. Shouldn't make much difference to you after all. Orders from us, or orders from the Federation, you're still the same puppet.”

    “And option two?”

    “You resign your position and you can go home?”

    “Just like that?”

    “Just like that. We're in no business to kill our own. Enough Cardassians have died in recent years. Which option do you choose?”

    He rose.

    “Can I have your word that nothing will happen to my family?”

    “You have my word,” she said without hesitation. “I can provide you with an escort, it could include even your own people, if it would make you feel more secure.”

    He shook his head. She couldn't help but admire the dignity he accepted all this with.

    “What will you do with the Directorate?” he asked.

    “Don't worry about them. They are being taken care of too.”

    Daset had decided to send Tarkan to deal with old, stubborn pigheads. Jarol supported that idea – Tarkan himself was very close to an old, stubborn pighead, so he would know how to deal with them. She fully trusted he would not switch sides for he was not a stupid pighead.

    “Forgive me saying this,” said the other Cardassian, “but it doesn't seem to me like you know what you are actually doing.”

    “I didn't ask you for your opinion,” she barked.
    “No, you did not,” he smiled widely. “But can I ask you one question?”


    “Didn't last few years teach you a lesson?”

    “Of course they did. They taught me that it's much better to be occupying force than under occupation.”

    His smile became wider and... more slimy. Who was that man?

    “Take them away,” she ordered and both men were taken outside.

    After securing the Castellan's office and sending him home she informed Daset of the situation. He acknowledged receiving her report, but didn't share any information regarding the progress of the other groups. She had to wait and waiting was something she despised.

    She went to the window and looked out. She could see an empty park there and one patrol. She went to a window in the other end of the room, which looked out to a street. There were armoured men there, two or three patrols, but none of them kept their weapons in their hands. They just gestured a lot, probably arguing with civilians they were talking to. She hoped it would work, she hoped no one would be hurt this night and tomorrow would mark a start of new age for Cardassia. They just needed to send people home for their own safety.

    Ma'Kan entered the room and went to Jarol.

    “The government buildings are secured,” she reported. “We had some problems with a few officials, but they were pacified and sent back home.”

    “Unharmed, I trust.”

    Ma'Kan pulled her face. “Well, some guards offered resistance. As per orders, we targeted their legs, so no fatal casualties on their side. As for us... fourteen dead, seventeen wounded, five of them seriously.

    “Did you take care of the wounded?” Jarol sighed.

    “Affirmative. I have notified medics of the situation and they are going to provide professional help.”

    Jarol nodded. “Good job.”

    “What now?”

    “Now we wait.”
  18. Gul Re'jal

    Gul Re'jal Commodore Commodore

    Jun 28, 2010
    Gul Re'jal is suspecting she's on the wrong space
    It was over. The longest night of her life was over.

    The streets were almost empty; there were only armed patrols there, but they were supposed to be recalled soon.

    Jarol stood by a window and observed the forced calmness in the city. She believed it was for the good, but unknown future was terrifying her.

    Tomorrow. Tomorrow Cardassia would be different. Tomorrow the change would be implemented and explained to everyone. They had no secrets.

    The sky in the East brightened. Stars became dimmer to finally yield to a bluish-purplish colour of the sky. There were almost no clouds.

    A Garesh on the street below talked to someone over his wrist comm and then waved to his people. Jarol could clearly see streaks of blood on his face. A moment later the militiamen gathered in one spot and were beamed away. She knew it wasn't only them. Each patrol was taken from streets everywhere, just as had been planned.

    The tomorrow has come.

    “No!” Tarkan was shouting, when Jarol entered Daset's office, which only a day before belonged to the Castellan.

    “Gul Tarkan, you--” Daset tried to say something, but the elder Gul kept shaking his head.

    “No way! You can't convince me.”

    “But sir,” it was the only time Jarol heard Daset address Tarkan as 'sir'.


    Daset took a deep breath.

    “Why?” he asked quietly after a moment. “We need you. We need your support.”

    “And you have it.”

    “Then why do you refuse?”

    “Because it's time for the young ones, Daset. For people like him,” he pointed at Toral, “and him,” his hand waved toward Brenok, who stood next to Jarol. “I am too old for this. My mindset is marked by the old way. The old way, which failed. I could feel too comfortable in such a cosy position and unwittingly attempt to redirect whole case into wrong direction. He thinks the way you need,” Tarkan went to Brenok, grabbed his arm and pulled him closer to Daset. “He will do the right thing. He knows how to change things to make them better. I don't.”

    “Gul Tarkan, we don't want to lose elder, experienced Guls, and they won't agree to listen to his orders,” Daset's voice was literally begging.

    “That's why I will back him up. I will represent the Mar'kuu Group before the older cadre, I will express my support of your actions. I will stand by you and show my grey hair, if you need to deal with other grey heads, which won't want to listen to children, but I can't take any real, decision-making responsibilities. This would be too dangerous. The government must be new and fresh. I would spoil it.” He took a breath. “Do you understand it?” he asked Daset.

    Brenok was staring at Tarkan with his mouth slightly opened. The elder Gul gave him a serious look and finally let go of Brenok's arm.

    “Gul Tarkan, we need your experience,” Daset didn't want to give up.

    “Then ask for my advice... And feel free not to use it too,” Tarkan said. “I will serve you, but don't give me any real power.”

    Jarol was impressed. She had been so wrong about Tarkan. He was a tough man, sometimes difficult, but he was a real patriot. He considered himself a servant of Cardassia, not its ruler.

    “I ask for one thing only,” Tarkan said. Daset looked at him with hope in his eyes. “I want to be responsible for the education of young officers and troops.” Hope in Daset's eyes faded. “I have plans for reforms and a few ideas how to improve our military's quality and professionalism.”

    “Whatever you wish,” Daset's voice was resigned. He gave up. “So, if Gul Tarkan doesn't want to become head of our government, who will?” Everyone stared at him. “Me?” he looked around. “I hoped for something else,” he smiled.

    “You don't always get what you want,” Tarkan said, a smile playing on his lips.

    “So I've noticed. Can I order you to replace me as the head of the government if I become one?”

    “No, I would order you back.”


    Brenok was still gazing at Tarkan.

    “Does everyone else know their duties?” Daset asked after a moment. All people, who were present in the room, nodded or murmured their confirmation.“Any questions?”

    Gul Marret raised his hand.

    “I have a question. Do we bring the Obsidian Order back?”

    Jarol, Jotrel and Relta shouted in unison “NO!” and even tones of their voices were the same.

    Tarkan laughed. “I think that answers your question,” he said.

    “All right,” Daset sighed. “I have prepared a speech for Gul Tarkan, but since he refuses...”

    “You wrote the speech, you present it to Cardassians... Legate,” Tarkan finished his sentence in most unexpected way. Daset's eyes opened and he whispered something to himself.

    Jarol knew how he felt. The weight of responsibility was pulling her shoulders to the floor.

    Tarkan went to the chair behind the desk and made an inviting motion, looking expectantly at Daset. “Legate Daset, if you please.”

    “Yes, Legate Tarkan, and please stay on the vision. I need your grey head there,” Daset sat in the chair and waved toward Jarol. “Legate Jarol, a female representative and a war hero, not mentioning late Legate Damar's personal friend would look nicely too.”

    She closed her eyes. The weight doubled.

    “I think two Damar's friends would be even better, not mentioning youth and... Originality,” Tarkan looked at Brenok and patted the nape of his own neck, no doubt meaning Brenok's long hair. “Gul, if you'd be so kind to join us.”

    “This is getting too weird,” Brenok said.

    “We're paralysed by fear, Brenok,” Tarkan replied. “We are afraid to fail. We need to let the steam out. So we behave like children, who play to be Legates. How do you deal with stress?”

    “I sing.”

    “Like I said: originality. Come here, young man. Humour me.” Tarkan's voice sounded fatherly, not commandingly.

    Brenok motioned to stand behind the chair.

    “How do we look?” Jarol asked. “Is there any chance we will put the Cardassians at ease?”

    “No,” Jotrel shook his head. “Wait. Gu... Legate Tarkan, please stand on the left side. My left side, your right. Jarol, on your left. That's good. Brenok, you stand behind Jarol's right shoulder. A bit to the right, yes, that's good.”

    Marret stood next to Jotrel and looked at the four people.

    “Looks good to me,” he approved.

    “Can we start before I ran away shouting like a little girl?” Daset said.

    “A room full of Legates and I hear jokes like on the first year at the Academy,” Toral commented.

    “This is our first year, Gul,” Tarkan boomed, emphasising both 'is', and 'Gul'; the latter making Toral smile. The elder man's voice sounded intimidating, but everyone in the room knew it wasn't for real.

    Jarol felt like nothing was real. It was just a strange dream and she would wake up as a tactical officer aboard the Roumar under Gul Corak's command, right?

    “Let's start the recording,” Jotrel said seriously.

    All four Cardassians behind the desk looked into a camera and Daset started:

    “Fellow Cardassians and non-Cardassian citizens of the Cardassian Union.

    “Many of you know that last night has brought changes, however you do not know what kind of changes. Do not fear, please. We apologise if we scared you, we apologise, if you experienced any discomfort.

    “We are the Mar'kuu Group. We were displeased with the Alon Ghemor's government decisions and actions and we decided it was too dangerous to let him and his supporters to stay in power. We had to take action and remove him from decision-making position, in which he posed a real threat to Cardassia's integrity and safety.

    “The Detapa Council is now dissolved and the Central Command takes over. This means no real changes for you, the citizens. We will do our best to secure your safety, provide your resources and serve you to the best of our abilities.

    “To ensure that our rebuilding process goes undisturbed, we have decided to close our borders to foreign powers. Everyone, who wishes to stay in the Union and become its denizens, can do so by applying for a special permission of the right to land. Those, who want to leave, will have six months time to bring their affairs to closure and leave our territory. After those six months any alien ship that will attempt to cross our borders without a special permission to enter Cardassian territory will be warned twice and then fired upon. We will not let anyone interfere with our internal matters any more,” Daset's voice got stronger. “We will follow wishes of Cardassian and non-Cardassian denizens of our Empire, and will not allow anyone to pose demands or conditions.

    “The transition period is not going to be easy for us, but we will do everything in our power to make sure you, the people, live in peace and without fears and worries.

    “We pledge our lives to serve you. We will rebuild strong Cardassia; Cardassia that doesn't bow to anyone, Cardassia, which would make Legate Damar proud.” Jarol nodded slightly, but visibly. “Cardassia, which would be your safe home.

    “It's time to say 'we are the Cardassians and we are proud of it!'.”

    The silence hanged in the air. A few seconds passed and then everyone present in the room let out a breath. Finally Daset rose.

    “All right, everyone. Enough of fun. Relta, make sure the recording is played as soon as possible. Everyone, it's time to get to work. The fun part has come to an end, the hard part starts.”

    They gathered around a big table in the adjacent room and accessed their databases to present their plans.
  19. Gul Re'jal

    Gul Re'jal Commodore Commodore

    Jun 28, 2010
    Gul Re'jal is suspecting she's on the wrong space
    “Gul, could I talk to you?” Kapoor entered the office, but abruptly stopped, seeing that Jarol was obviously discussing something with Brenok. “Maybe I should come later?”

    “Come in, Kapoor. What is it?” Jarol wasn't good at reading Terrans' expressions – it was a miracle she has learnt telling them apart! - but had an impression the Lieutenant was nervous.

    “It is about this... declaration of closing borders.”

    “There should be sufficient time for you to pack all your things and return home,” Jarol said.

    “Oh, it would be, if I planned it.”

    “What do you mean?”

    “Legate Daset said that all, who wanted to leave, have six months to finish their matters and go away. He also said that those, who wished to stay – can.”

    “That's correct.”

    “Well... I don't want to leave,” the Terran said quietly and lowered her eyes.

    Jarol didn't see that one coming.

    “Are you sure? Do you realise what it means? You wouldn't be able to leave Cardassia after those six months, maybe for very long time, as the isolation may take years.”

    “I understand that.”

    Brenok, who sat with his back to the entrance, turned and looked at Kapoor. Jarol rose and went around her desk to stand in front of the woman.

    “Are you sure of this?” she asked again. Kapoor was so short she barely reached Jarol's shoulder.

    “Yes, Gul. I gave it a lot of thought and discussed it with... someone, and... I want to stay. I would also like to stay in the Guard, if it's possible. On this ship.”

    Jarol looked at Brenok. His face expressed nothing, he awaited her decision and had no intention of influencing it in any way. One of Jarol's new task was taking care of non-Cardassians within the Union, so it was in the scope of her new position to make that decision. Jarol looked back at Kapoor, wondering if she wasn't some kind of dedicated spy, but the woman's service was nothing but exemplary and she has never done anything to raise any suspicions.

    “Your military career will have to be decided by Legate Tarkan. I will notify him about your request. You have time to change your mind and leave before we close the borders, but if you wish to stay, then I see no problem with that,” the Cardassian woman said finally.

    Kapoor raised her head and looked at Jarol; her big eyes full of happiness. She seemed relieved and the Cardassian woman had an impression that there was something behind her decision, that it was very important for her to stay. She really wanted to stay.

    “Thank you, Gul,” the Terran said.

    “However,” Jarol said and a worried shadow appeared on Kapoor's face, “you will have to stop wearing this,” she indicated her Federation uniform. “If you want to stay among us, you will have to become one of us.”

    “Yes, Gul. I will, Gul.”

    “Kapoor,” Brenok spoke unexpectedly.

    The woman looked at him.

    “You should address her 'Legate' now,” he pointed to Jarol.

    The Terran put her hand over her mouth. “Oh my... I'm sorry, Legate. Of course! I'm sorry. I didn't mean any offence, it's just the habit--”

    Jarol raised her hand.

    “Relax, Lieutenant.”

    “So, I can stay?”

    She didn't seem to mind the obstacles. She just wanted to be able to stay. Jarol was sure her reason, whatever it was, was very important to her.

    “Affirmative,” she confirmed. “Dismissed.”

    “Thank you, sir,” she said again, showing all her white teeth in a smile.

    Jarol watched Kapoor leaving her office and going straight to Karama. The woman leaned over him and kissed the inverted drop on his forehead. The Legate thought it was cute and then it stuck her; what has she just seen? She lowered the padd she kept in her hand and stared at the two officers flabbergasted. Karama raised his head and said something, smiling widely. Kapoor went to her station, but his eyes lingered on her for a while longer before returning to his console.

    Jarol looked at Brenok, who, like her, observed whole scene through partially glass door of her office. There was a barely noticeable smile on the Glinn's... Gul's face. Did he know? Wasn't he surprised?

    Did she mind? She was shocked, but it was a shock of astonishment, not disgust. It would never occur to her that any real intimacy could grow between a Cardassian and a non-Cardassian, but somehow, to her own surprise, she didn't find it appalling. She just wasn't sure if it wasn't unfair for Karama, as she didn't know if Terran hearts had enough space to love with the same depth as Cardassian hearts.

    “Did you know?” she asked Brenok.

    “I had no idea,” he shook his head.

    She cast the last glance on the bridge and went back to her desk.

    “Where were we?” she asked, activating the padd.

    Jarol stood in front of them. Just like four years ago, she had asked her crew – all of her crew, as the ship's functions were taken care of by a skeleton replacement crew, borrowed from Jotrel's Atash – to gather in the cargo hall. Four years ago she had asked them to volunteer to help in the rebuilding process. And they did – all of them. This time, however, she wasn't going to ask them for anything; she wanted to share something with them. And she wanted to bid her farewell.

    She looked at Brenok, who stood next to her. He wore a serious expression on his face, but when he noticed she was looking at him, he winked. She smiled weakly and her eyes returned to the black mass of armours.

    She knew she would miss them. She'd been their Gul for seven years, but she still considered them Gul Corak's crew. In fact, less than half of the current crew had served under Corak, but she always hoped the spirit of their late Gul was directing her decisions and moves. She wished he wouldn't be disappointed in her if he lived to that day.

    She glanced at Zamarran. She knew Brenok's plans for him and she agreed with her friend's assessment – the engineer would make an excellent Gul's aide. Zamarran's age would balance Brenok's youth. His wisdom would balance Brenok's... what? She glanced at the long-haired officer next to her and couldn't stop a grin. Heavens, he was perfect! His only disadvantage was his age, but he would get older!

    She looked at Karama, who stood next to Zamarran. Her last decision as the Roumar's commander was to promote him to Glinn. He didn't know yet, she waited with the news until the last moment.

    Ma'Kan seemed sad. Her eyes were on Jarol's face and the Legate felt like scrutinised. That young woman had a future, great future. Jarol hoped she had her little share in creating that future.

    Kapoor. She had her hair done in a Cardassian way – three braids. She wore a Cardassian armour and a pleasant face expression. Jarol thought that this was one of bravest people she ever knew; she doubted she'd have enough courage to volunteer to serve on a former enemy's warship. The Legate glanced at Karama. Then again at Kapoor. The Terran's cheeks flushed red – was she ashamed of her relationship with the communication officer? Or was it rather the fact that the commander knew about it.

    Jarol sent Kapoor a smile. Don't worry, girl. What do the Vulcans say? Live long and prosper.

    Garesh Dalar. She remembered training his troops with him. He was smiling now. Jarol didn't think she had ever seen him smiling. He was the tough guy type. He had to be, considering his job. But right now his look was benign and friendly.

    They waited. She stood in front of them, looking at them, and she had to tell them.

    Brenok must have felt her hesitation, as he moved closer. He didn't do anything more, but he knew she would notice and understand. He offered her his support and it meant more to her than anything else in the whole galaxy.

    “I had asked you to gather here, because there is something I would like to share with you,” she started. “I have known some of you for many years.” She looked at Dalar. “I have trusted some of you with biggest secrets,” her eyes went to Zamarran. “I have sent you to dangerous missions and you never complained,” Ma'Kan. “I had to teach you tough lessons, but you were good students,” Karama smiled when she looked at him. “I could learn some things from you,” Kapoor's face expressed astonishment, when Jarol's eyes met hers. “But the time doesn't stand in place, it moves forward, sometimes too slow, sometimes too fast, but constantly, and things change. They must change for us to grow.” She took a deep breath. “The Cardassian Union changes and we must not stay behind.

    “Last week brought huge changes to Cardassia. We have overthrown a puppet Federation government.” A few voices expressed their support quietly, but audibly. “Now we need to rebuilt and start everything anew. And we will do it our way, the Cardassian way.” More voices. “We will do our best not to make the same mistakes our predecessors had made. We will do our best not to let down the people, who just want to live their lives in peace and comfort.” I sound like a politician already, she thought. “Big changes brought small changes. Especially for the Roumar.

    “Effective today, the command is transferred to Gul Brenok,” she said in a louder, more commanding officer style voice. The cargo hall was filled with murmur. She raised her hand and the sound immediately subsided. “Glinn Zamarran is promoted to Glinn Grade Two and takes the position of Gul's aide.” No one was surprised, except for Zamarran himself. “Gil Karama's promotion to Glinn was accepted yesterday,” Karama's eyes were wide with mixture of happiness and disbelief. “Glinn Ya'val will take the chief engineer's position.” Garesh Dalar patted Ya'val's shoulder.

    She silenced for a moment, letting the revelations sink in. She looked at Brenok; he was observing the crowd intently, but glanced at her feeling her gaze. Her eyes returned to her... his crew.

    “I've always believed you were one of the best crews in the fleet. I hope, I believe you can be even better. I am sure you can become the best crew in the fleet. And you better don't disappoint me, because starting from today you serve on the flagship of the Cardassian Guard. There is only one such warship in the fleet and you better be good example for others or I'll return and teach you a lesson.” Someone giggled and she smiled. “Permission to laugh.” The cargo hall was filled with laughter; sometimes nervous, sometimes forced, sometimes surprised, but mostly heartily and sincere. How was she supposed to go on without them?

    Zamarran rose. “Permission to speak.”

    She nodded.

    “I think I know why you leave us, and I think most of us guesses too, but we want to hear it.”

    She bit her lower lip. She wasn't comfortable with that thought herself yet and had no idea how to inform her crew in a neutral tone.

    Brenok made two steps forward, coming a bit in front of her and said. “Upon Legate Daset's orders, Legate Jarol is being transferred to Cardassia Prime to assume her new responsibilities in our new government.”

    Total silence lasted for a second or two, then someone made the tiniest sound and an explosion of cheers filled the cargo hall.

    She expected some of them would be happy for her, but everyone? The cargo hall looked like a party, not a warship crew gathering. The militia troops chanted their support – they expressed even their contentedness in a disciplined manner. She looked at Brenok and then turned away from everyone, not being able to stop tears from filling her eye ridges. Her friend observed the crew with a grin on his face. He didn't seem surprised by their reaction at all.

    “Sir?” Zamarran's voice said behind her. “No.” he muttered. “Legate?” She turned to him, ashamed of her tears. “Yes, 'Legate' sounds fine,” he kept muttering like to himself, but she knew him well enough to know his sense of humour. “Legate, I wanted to say, in the name of the whole crew, that we are very proud of you,” her eyes filled with tears again, but he didn't seem to notice. He knew she didn't want him to notice. “It was a privilege to serve under your command. It is a privilege to know you,” he added in a less official tone of voice and then fell silent. They were looking into each other's eyes and that was telling her more than any words would.

    They were not Gul Corak's crew. They were her crew.

    Her vision distorted as her eyes filled with tears again.

    Zamarran approached her stopping just on the edge of her personal space.

    “I think...” he started quietly, “I think Legate Damar would be proud of you.”

    He stood there, shielding her from view of others. These words meant more to her than any other praise, especially since that morning she had received a message from Damar's sister, who had written the same thing.

    Zamarran waited for her to compose herself, and then he moved a bit to a side so that she could see the cargo hall and said. “Seems like there is someone, who would like to talk to you.”

    She followed his gaze and saw Kapoor standing on the edge of the make up stage, rocking on her feet forward and backward. Zamarran waved to the human and she approached them, then he left.

    “Legate,” the short woman started. “I know I probably break like zillion protocols and social rules talking to you directly, but I would like to wish you luck.” Jarol smiled. “It was a great honour to serve on your ship under your command. And thank you for promotion for Gil Karama. He would never admit it, bit it means a lot to him. He wants you to be proud of him.”

    “I always was. You can tell him that,” Jarol said softly.

    “I will,” Kapoor nodded vigorously. She was so much like a child sometimes. “I never knew and never spoke to anyone from any government,” she said, her eyes opening wider.

    The Cardassian woman didn't say anything for a moment, as the words sank in – she was a part of a government. The notion was never as clear to her and this very moment.

    “And my congratulations, Legate,” Kapoor said and, after receiving a dismiss nod from Jarol, left.

    Brenok dismissed everyone from the cargo hall and they returned to their duties. He stayed with her.

    “What if I fail? What if I'm going to be like the old Central Command?”

    He shook his head. “No way. You are nothing like them. And if you try to do something stupid, I'll stop you.”

    “I hope you will,” she answered seriously.

    They left the cargo hall and slowly walked to the transporter room, from which she would beam to Cardassia Prime to assume her new duty.
  20. Gul Re'jal

    Gul Re'jal Commodore Commodore

    Jun 28, 2010
    Gul Re'jal is suspecting she's on the wrong space

    Commander Niamh Raskin's Personal Log
    Stardate 73756.3
    Old Earth Calendar: 3rd of October 2396

    I think everyone dreaded the Cardassians' arrival as no one knew what to expect. First we weren't sure how to notify and invite them to our conference, so we settled for sending a general message to Cardassia Prime. “To whom it may concern”. However we weren't sure they had received it, so finally we had to ask the Ferengi – of all people, the Ferengi! - to pass the message to the Cardassians, as only the Ferengi were still in contact with them, since the new Central Command had closed its borders and isolated the Union from the Alpha Quardant over fifteen years ago.

    We knew very little of their military coup. They had acted on their threat of attacking all vessels, which would cross their borders uninvited, and after a few skirmished no one wanted to bother them again. No one knew what was happening there.

    However the Borg threat became too serious and the Federation Council decided that all governments of the Alpha Quadrant should be included in our conference. Also the Cardassians.

    We had managed to get the message through, thanks to the Ferengi, and the Cardassians, in person of one Legate Daset, confirmed their arrival. One ship. Two representatives of their government and the highest ranking military Gul.

    And so they have arrived. Upon approaching our borders they had politely asked for permission to enter the Federation territory and then a massive warship travelled through Federation space to Sol. And she was massive, all right. Twice the size of their Galor class, armed to teeth, it resembled a giant, brown orca with a tail resembling a kind of trident.

    I was assigned to the Cardassians. A prospect I didn't look forward to, especially after seeing their heavily armed warship.

    They hailed us.

    A Cardassian with long hair and a friendly smile, wearing a Cardassian uniform with black and silver sides, who introduced himself as Gul Brenok, politely asked for permission to join the conference. Since they hadn't provided any information prior to their arrival, I had to ask who would be present on the conference. And he kindly informed me that he would accompany two Legates, namely Legate Jarol, who occurred to be a woman in a silver uniform standing to his left, and Legate Jotrel, a man in silver too, with a stern look on his face, to Brenok's right. They would also take six guards. I acknowledged and he disconnected.

    Whatever the Cardassians were doing behind their closed door, they seemed to prosper.

    Good for them!

    But was it good for us?

    The End
    Last edited: Oct 3, 2010