DS9 12x18 – "Last Chance Saloon"

Discussion in 'Fan Fiction' started by lvsxy808, Mar 14, 2019.

  1. lvsxy808

    lvsxy808 Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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  2. lvsxy808

    lvsxy808 Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    Joined:
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    Meanwhile...

    TNG 17x18 – “CAESURA”

    Feeling frustrated and powerless while Aventine is away exploring the subspace tunnels, Picard is annoyed that the calculations to open the apertures are taking so long, and that one ship must stay behind while the other explores. He presses his crew hard to be as ready as they can be. Are Worf’s security troops suitably prepared? Is LaForge manufacturing enough transphasic torpedoes? While they wait, Kadohata calls her family on Cestus III – she cannot tell them much, but she manages to imply that they should run for their lives. Aventine’s chief engineer Leishman hits on LaForge – she has a thing for fellow chief engineers under stress (DS9 11x21 “Inferno”). Worf and Choudhury stagger into sickbay clearly having just been violently intimate – Crusher smirks her way through treating them. When Aventine returns and it is finally Enterprise’s turn to do something, they find themselves in the starless void between galaxies – complete darkness. Picard fears it is prophetic.

    TTN 1x18 – “ONE BY ONE”

    2381: Riker plans to send a strike team to rescue Titan’s captive crew, but the attempt fails spectacularly, leaving the remaining crew disheartened. 1525: Axion settles in around its new homeworld, hidden from detection by the metal shell. 2381: In Axion, Vale and Tuvok quietly observe the Caeliar, trying to learn their patterns. 1573: Columbia’s Dr Metzger throws herself off a building. Lt Valerian stops eating or talking, withering away. Inyx tries to save her by infusing Caeliar catoms into her system – the attempt fails and Valerian dies horribly. Once Fletcher dies of old age, Hernandez is alone. 2381: On Titan, Counsellor Huilan catches Pazlar wearing her holo-presence suit so much that she forgets she is still in the holotank. 1574: Hernandez is old and frail. Inyx begs to help her by infusing catoms – he has worked out the kinks. She accepts, and is reborn, revitalised and effectively immortal. She can also eavesdrop on the Caeliar gestalt...

    VOY 10x18 – “THE CORRIDORS OF POWER”

    At the Palais, President Bacco calls a meeting of all the foreign ambassadors – she wants to form an allied fleet to defend against the Borg. The Klingons, Gorn, Talarians and Donatra’s IRS sign up, plus reluctantly Tal’Aura’s RSE. Bacco offers Garak several resource-rich colony worlds in exchange for Cardassia’s support, and gets the Ferengi to buy out the Breen’s services so that the Tholianscannot do the same. Learning of this, Tholian ambassador Tezrene vows revenge. At Starfleet Command, Seven of Nine and the admirals brainstorm. Seven suggests Shinzon’s thalaron weapon (TNG “Nemesis”), but Admiral Jellico refuses on ethical grounds. Admiral Batiste suggests Species 8472, but Seven has no way of contacting them. You cannot fight, you cannot survive – your only option is to run. She mock-attacks Jellico to make her point, which only gets her thrown out of the building. On Voyager, Chakotay receives reports about the planned allied fleet and insists on joining up.
     
  3. lvsxy808

    lvsxy808 Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    Joined:
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    TEASER


    FADE IN:


    1 EXT. DEEP SPACE NINE


    Establishing the station...


    2 INT. DS9 - COMMANDER’S OFFICE


    Beginning on another padd, held in Commander RO’s hands. It shows more Starfleet reports of the ongoing situation.

    The office door opens and Major CENN steps into the room.


    CENN
    Commander...
    (she doesn’t look up)
    It’s nearly oh-one-hundred hours.
    You shouldn’t be here.

    RO
    (re padd)
    Just... reading the reports.​


    Cenn takes a seat, not sure he wants to know.


    CENN
    To quote yourself... hit me.

    RO
    (shrug)
    More attacks. More deaths.
    (beat)
    One small ray of light though. The
    reports from the Enterprise and
    the Aventine say they’ve found the
    point where the Borg are entering
    the Alpha Quadrant - the Azure
    Nebula. So I suppose strictly
    speaking that’s the Beta Quadrant.

    CENN
    That’s why the first few attacks
    were all in the Onias sector.

    RO
    Yep. Some kind of subspace tunnel
    from the Delta Quadrant. I’ve sent
    the technical details to Nog and
    John. Unfortunately... there are
    dozens of these tunnels leading
    all around the galaxy and all
    intersecting at the nebula, and
    they don’t know exactly which
    one the Borg are coming through.

    CENN
    So what are they doing about it?

    RO
    Some good old-fashioned exploring.
    One ship goes through while the
    other stands guard at the nebula,
    then they swap over, until they
    find the right tunnel.

    CENN
    And when they do, then what?

    RO
    Ray of light number two. Admiral
    Akaar - he’s the new liaison to
    the president since Ross retired,
    so congratulations to him...​


    Cenn smirks - he knows Ro and Akaar don’t get along.


    RO (cont)
    ...says that Bacco is talking to all
    the ambassadors and trying to
    pull together a unified fleet to
    blockade the nebula and stop
    the Borg getting through.

    CENN
    So we might have a chance.

    RO
    Maybe. Still a hell of a lot of
    people dying while we wait
    for that chance, though.

    CENN
    Do you want me to tell the crew?

    RO
    It can wait till morning. May as
    well let someone have a good
    night’s sleep.

    CENN
    On that subject, I’m officially
    relieving you of duty. Go to bed.

    RO
    (sad smile)
    I’m too tired to argue. Can’t
    promise you I’ll sleep, though. ​


    Sluggishly, Ro gets up from her seat and follows Cenn out.


    3 INT. DS9 - ETANA & RICHTER’S QUARTERS


    ETANA KOL (Bajoran female) and KRISTEN RICHTER (human female) lie tastefully in bed together. Richter is at least trying to sleep, but Etana is just staring at the ceiling. Finally Richter turns over to look at her girlfriend.


    RICHTER
    What is it?

    ETANA
    Sorry, go back to sleep.

    RICHTER
    I wasn’t sleeping anyway. And
    I can tell when you’re thinking.
    There’s kind of a whirring noise. ​


    Etana gives her girlfriend a playfully withering look, but eventually also turns in bed so they are facing each other.


    ETANA
    Okay. It’s just that we had a
    patient in the Infirmary this after-
    noon. Old man, must have been
    over a hundred. And he was dying.
    Nothing we could do, he had a
    long-term chronic condition. We
    just had to help him go to the
    Prophets in peace and comfort.

    RICHTER
    I’m sorry.

    ETANA
    But he was alone. No friends.
    Never had any children. Nobody
    to be with him at the end but me
    and a couple of other strangers.
    And I just thought - I never
    want that to be us. Ever.

    RICHTER
    I don’t think it will.

    ETANA
    Me either. But...​


    Etana suddenly sits up in bed, something on her mind.


    ETANA
    If I ask you something, will you
    promise not to take it the wrong
    way?

    RICHTER
    Of course. You can ask me what-
    ever you want, you know that.

    ETANA
    Okay. ​


    Etana suddenly jumps out of bed, dashes across the room to the wardrobe, digs inside and pulls something out. Without showing it, she comes back to the bed and sits facing her girlfriend. Richter sits upright as well.


    ETANA
    If... anything... should happen, I
    don’t want to go to the Prophets
    an old, single woman... with no
    wife. Will you marry me? ​


    Etana holds out a Bajoran PLEDGE BRACELET in both hands, offers it nervously to Richter.


    ETANA
    Now, just to be clear, I’m not
    asking you to marry me because
    I think we’re all about to die and
    I just don’t want to be alone. I’m
    asking you to marry me because I
    don’t want to die - whenever that
    happens - without having stood
    before the Prophets and said that
    you, Kristen Richter, are the love
    of my life. The one I want to
    spend the rest of my life with
    - however long that is - ​


    Richter reaches out and puts a finger over Etana’s lips to stop her from babbling.


    RICHTER
    Yes. Yes, Etana Kol... I will
    marry you.

    ETANA
    You will?

    RICHTER
    Yes, of course!

    ETANA
    Oh, thank the Prophets! ​


    The two women kiss, full of excitement and happiness and relief. PAN ACROSS to the window of stars...


    FADE OUT


    END OF TEASER
     
  4. lvsxy808

    lvsxy808 Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    Joined:
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    ACT ONE


    FADE IN


    4 EXT. DEEP SPACE NINE


    A new morning...


    5 INT. DS9 - COMMANDER’S OFFICE


    Ro HUGS Etana in excitement.


    RO
    Congratulations! Of course I’ll be
    in your wedding. But, ah... what
    does “give you away” mean?

    ETANA
    Oh, that’s a human thing. We’re
    going to do a mostly traditional
    Bajoran wedding, but I am marrying
    a human, so she gets to have some
    things her way too. It just means
    you have to hand me over to her.

    RO
    What, like - I don’t own you
    anymore, now she owns you?

    ETANA
    Basically.

    RO
    Sometimes I don’t think I’ll ever
    understand humans.​


    Ro turns away, hiding an expression on her face.


    ETANA
    ...What? I know that face. There’s
    something you’re not saying.

    RO
    It’s nothing. I’m just happy for
    you, that’s all.

    ETANA
    Laren, I thought we were friends.
    Say it, for Prophets’ sake.

    RO
    Okay, but don’t hate me. I’m just
    worried that you’re doing this for
    the wrong reasons.

    ETANA
    Like what?

    RO
    Like because there’s a real-life
    apocalypse bearing down on us.

    ETANA
    We talked about that. Spent most
    of the night talking about it, in
    fact. But we’re not doing it just
    because we might all die soon.
    We would have got married
    eventually anyway - we just
    didn’t want to miss our chance.

    RO
    Then I’d be honoured to “give you
    away”, Kol. Besides, a big party
    might be just what the station
    needs right now. ​


    6 INT. DS9 - INFIRMARY


    BASHIR regards Richter with delighted surprise.


    BASHIR
    Kristen, I’d be delighted! But...
    shouldn’t your parents be the
    ones to give you away?

    RICHTER
    Well, they would. But given that
    they live back on Proxima, and
    that’s a good two weeks away... I
    mean, don’t get me wrong, I’m not
    saying you’re my second choice -

    BASHIR
    Kristen! I’m privileged to be any
    kind of choice at all. Although I
    was already feeling my age, and
    me acting as your father figure
    doesn’t exactly help with that...

    RICHTER
    Then don’t think of yourself as my
    father. You can be my cool younger
    uncle, or a fun boss, or -

    BASHIR
    Please stop, I’m begging you. I
    appreciate the honour. So you’re
    having the ceremony straight away?

    RICHTER
    No time to waste, not to put
    too fine a point on it. ​


    7 INT. DS9 - CANDLEWOOD’S QUARTERS


    HETIK is making the bed in the morning. CANDLEWOOD shouts from off screen, his voice muffled as if mid-ablutions.


    CANDLEWOOD (o.s.)
    So I promised Nog I’d go through
    these readings the Aventine sent
    in with him. This isn’t exactly the
    most science-heavy post in the
    fleet. I should take the chance
    to strut my stuff while I can.

    HETIK
    Sounds like a good idea. ​


    Hetik pauses and looks at the freshly made bed, as if seeing it for the first time. He turns and looks around at his boyfriend’s quarters - the books, the computers, the picture frame of the two of them, the mezuzah by the door.

    When Candlewood comes out of the bathroom, he finds Hetik sitting on the bed and waiting for him.


    CANDLEWOOD
    Uh-oh. That’s serious face.

    HETIK
    I was just thinking about how I do
    this every morning. Tidying up the
    place like it’s my own quarters.

    CANDLEWOOD
    Well, you do spend practically
    every night here. You’re just
    being a polite house guest. An
    admirable quality in a man.

    HETIK
    What if I were more than just a
    house guest? What if... what if
    these were my quarters too?

    CANDLEWOOD
    (taken aback)
    You want to move in with me? Why?

    HETIK
    Because I love you, stupid. ​


    Candlewood’s confused amazement turns to bashful joy.


    HETIK
    What do you think?

    CANDLEWOOD
    I mean, we’d have to figure out
    the logistics, find somewhere to
    put your prayer mandala, but your
    work clothes don’t exactly take
    up a lot of space in my closet...

    HETIK
    (laughs)
    So is that a yes?

    CANDLEWOOD
    I’ve... never actually lived with any-
    one. Even my Academy roommate
    seemed to find any excuse to be
    out. And I kinda want you to keep
    liking me. So let’s talk about it
    tonight, after work? ​


    Hetik nods his agreement. After a quick kiss, Candlewood bounces back towards the bathroom, doing the “I am so awesome” dance and singing along tunelessly...


    CANDLEWOOD
    I’ve got a boyfriend, he wants to
    live with me, I am so awesome... ​


    Hetik chuckles, glad that that went as well as it did.


    8 INT. DS9 - QUARK’S BAR


    QUARK brandishes a padd in Ro’s face, as the morning set-up goes on around them.


    QUARK
    What the frinx is this, Laren? I
    host the weddings around here.

    RO
    Etana wanted a traditional Bajoran
    ceremony, Quark. It’s going to be
    in the shrine, and Kira’s going to
    officiate. Besides, you should be
    glad - seven hours is no time to
    pull a wedding together.

    QUARK
    Laren... this is all I can do.

    RO
    Look further down the list. ​


    Quark pauses, reads the padd further. Then he sees what she wanted him to see. He keeps a dignified air, not wanting to seem relieved. Ro sees right through him.


    QUARK
    Well, okay then. You’d just better
    get ready for the best afterparty
    this station has ever seen.

    RO
    Are you sure? It’s not much time.

    QUARK
    Are you doubting my last-minute
    catering skills?

    RO
    Perish the thought.

    QUARK
    (faux casual)
    Heard anything from Dax?

    RO
    We heard from her this morning. ​


    Ro wills him not to ask any further - some things she can’t tell him. He understands. But at least Dax is still alive.


    QUARK
    Okay. Good to know.
    (re padd)
    I’ll get to work on this. ​


    He walks away to get to work. Ro watches him go.


    9 INT. SUBSPACE TUNNEL


    USS Aventine shoots through the blue-white vortex of energy, moving comparatively smoothly.


    10 INT. AVENTINE - BRIDGE


    Captain EZRI DAX instinctively grabs the armrests of her command chair as she watches the pulses of blue-white energy zoom past on the gigantic main viewscreen. They have no idea where they’re going, or where they will end up.

    Suddenly the curtain of blue-white BREAKS OPEN on the screen and normal space appears beyond...


    11 EXT. SPACE


    The subspace tunnel SPITS the Vesta-class ship out into space, the rip in space-time sealing itself up behind.


    12 INT. AVENTINE - BRIDGE


    The ship SHUDDERS around them as they slam back to normal speed from the impossible speeds of the subspace tunnel. Dax catches her breath and forces her hands to let go.


    DAX
    Confirm position. ​


    The current helm officer, MAVROIDIS (Ullian female) works her consoles, and reads the results.


    MAVROIDIS
    Delta Quadrant, between the
    Perseus and Carina arms.​


    First officer SAM BOWERS leans forward in his chair.


    BOWERS
    Distance from the Azure Nebula?

    MAVROIDIS
    Sixty-four thousand, five hundred
    and ninety-two light years.​


    Restless, Dax gets up and approaches the science station, where HELKARA (Zakdorn male) works with singular focus.


    DAX
    Gruhn - what’s the word on the
    subspace tunnel? Do both ends
    open to the same frequency?

    HELKARA
    Negative. It seems to need a
    unique frequency pulse for each
    aperture. That’ll likely be true
    for all the tunnels.

    BOWERS
    Any sign of the Borg out there?
    This is the Delta Quadrant... ​


    KEDAIR (Takaran female) replies from the tactical console.


    KEDAIR
    Also negative. But we’re picking
    up a massive debris field bearing
    three-three-one mark one-five.
    Lots of refined metals - duranium,
    rodinium, terminium, and semi-
    rigid poly-duranide.

    DAX
    Enough mass to suggest a starship?

    KEDAIR
    More like a thousand starships.
    It’s an entire ring of pulverised
    metal orbiting the nearest star.

    DAX
    Range?

    KEDAIR
    Just under a light year.

    MAVROIDIS
    At top speed, we could reach the
    ring in about an hour.

    BOWERS
    I don’t think we can afford the
    distraction. We should hold station
    while Commander Helkara works
    out the aperture frequency for
    the return trip.

    HELKARA
    Don’t hang around on my account.
    This’ll take a few hours at least. ​


    Decision made, Dax returns to her command chair.


    DAX
    Mavroidis, set a course for the
    debris field. I want to check it out.

    BOWERS
    (leans in, quiet)
    Captain, if something did destroy
    thousands of ships, are they
    really somebody we want to
    meet right now?

    DAX
    Depends whose side they’re on.
    Still, a little caution never hurts.
    Kedair, scan the region for
    subspace radio activity or
    any other artificial signals.

    KEDAIR
    Aye, Captain.

    MAVROIDIS
    Course laid in, Captain.

    KEDAIR
    No short-range signal activity,
    Captain. Minimal subspace radio
    traffic at long range. No sign of
    transwarp signatures or other
    vessels.

    DAX
    Glad to hear it. Helm, engage.​


    Mavroidis works her helm controls...


    13 EXT. SPACE


    ...and the Aventine ramps up to warp, jumping away into the distance.


    FADE OUT


    END OF ACT ONE
     
  5. lvsxy808

    lvsxy808 Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    Joined:
    Jun 29, 2001
    Location:
    London
    ACT TWO


    FADE IN


    14 EXT. SPACE


    Aventine flies at warp...


    15 INT. AVENTINE - BRIDGE


    Now the screen shows the much more familiar and comforting sight of stars at warp, as Aventine zooms through them. Dax looks to her side, where Bowers is still not happy.


    DAX
    Don’t look so glum, Sam. Think of
    it as a chance to learn something
    while we’re stuck out here.

    BOWERS
    It’s not the learning that worries
    me. I just can’t help wonder if
    any of that debris is from ships
    whose captains also wanted to
    learn something.

    DAX
    Y’know Sam, for someone who
    likes to think of himself as a
    man of action, you sure don’t - ​


    BEEP BEEP BEEP. Kedair reads her console...


    KEDAIR
    Long-range contacts. Multiple
    unidentified objects leaving
    the debris-ringed system.

    BOWERS
    Speed and heading?

    KEDAIR
    Warp two, intercept course. At
    that speed, they will reach the
    debris field the same time we do.

    BOWERS
    (to Dax)
    I suppose this’ll go in your log
    as a coincidence.

    DAX
    Maybe.

    MAVROIDIS
    Captain, do I change course?

    DAX
    No. Whatever’s on its way out to
    meet us knows we’re here. If it’s
    friendly, I want to make contact.

    BOWERS
    And if it’s not?

    DAX
    Then we’ll just have to hope
    we can outsmart it, outrun it,
    or outgun it - in that order.
    Steady as she goes, helm.

    MAVROIDIS
    Aye, sir.

    DAX
    (aside to Bowers)
    But it might not be a bad idea
    to take the ship to yellow alert.

    BOWERS
    I thought you’d never ask. ​


    Bowers works his own console, and the lights around the ship begin to flash with YELLOW ALERT.


    16 EXT. SPACE


    Aventine continues on its way into the unknown...


    17 EXT. DEEP SPACE NINE


    Returning us home to the station...


    18 INT. DS9 - DOCKING RING CORRIDOR


    The regular Bajor shuttle disgorges its EXTRAS into the corridor. Ro is there waiting, until the one she is waiting for finally emerges - KIRA NERYS. They smile at each other.


    RO
    Back so soon?

    KIRA
    You really don’t have to greet me
    at the door every time. I do know
    my way around.

    RO
    Simply showing all due respect to
    an honoured member of the church,
    Prylar Kira.

    KIRA
    Wow - Major Cenn must be having
    a good effect on you.

    RO
    You mean you believed that?
    Great! Make sure you tell him.​


    They chuckle together, and head down the corridor.


    RO
    So how are things going down in
    the good old Vedek Assembly?

    KIRA
    Better. I think it was the right
    thing, bringing Opaka back from
    the Gamma Quadrant. Even Bellis
    has cut down on his complaining.

    RO
    That really is a miracle.

    KIRA
    He has mentioned repeatedly that
    you two had a “conversation”...

    RO
    Look, Nerys... you know I was just
    angry, and lashing out...

    KIRA
    Don’t worry about it, Laren. We all
    handle stress in our own ways. I
    may or may not have had a couple
    of daydreams about punching Bellis
    over and over until he just stops
    talking
    ... but I pause, I take a
    deep breath and I remember that
    he’s under a lot of stress too.
    (beat)
    And then I just enjoy the fact that
    you got to punch him for me. ​


    They laugh together again.


    RO
    Speaking of stress... thanks for
    doing this at the last minute.

    KIRA
    Honestly, I’m just glad someone is
    trying to be happy. I think we could
    all do with a bit of that lately.

    RO
    You’ve been keeping up with the
    reports?

    KIRA
    Obviously not as much as I used
    to. But what I can.

    RO
    Entire planets, Nerys. Planets.

    KIRA
    I know, Laren. It’s inconceivable.
    I just try to hold on to my faith
    that the Prophets have a plan
    for all of us.

    RO
    But this is what I was saying.
    I don’t understand how you can
    possibly find the good in what’s
    happening. I mean, it’s not even
    as if the Borg are assimilating
    people anymore, where you could
    maybe make the argument that
    at least they’re still alive. They’re
    just killing everyone.

    KIRA
    I hear what you’re saying, Laren.
    I really do. And I don’t know the
    answer. I just think... there has
    to be one. There has to be.
    (beat)
    And until I know what it is, I do
    whatever is in my power to help
    whoever I can. ​


    They walk on down the corridor...


    19 INT. DS9 - QUARK’S BAR


    Hetik walks into the bar, preparing for his work shift. But before he gets very far, he stops in surprise to see silver banners being draped from the railings, flowers everywhere.

    Meanwhile Quark yells directions at his Ferengi workers.


    QUARK
    Come on come on come on! Only
    three hours to go till this show
    is on the road, so get moving! ​


    Confused, Hetik approaches TREIR, who is restocking the bar. The Orion dabo girl is dispassionately getting on with her job, not caught up in the excitement.


    HETIK
    Did I somehow sleep for two months
    and miss that it was Gratitude
    Festival time again already?

    TREIR
    You didn’t hear?

    HETIK
    Didn’t hear what?

    TREIR
    Ensign Richter and Sergeant Etana
    are getting married.

    HETIK
    ...Now?

    TREIR
    In a couple of hours, yeah.

    HETIK
    Okay... good for them. Kinda
    standing in my sunlight, but...

    TREIR
    What do you mean?

    HETIK
    I was all excited ‘cause I asked
    John to move in with me. That’s
    kind of been eclipsed now. Still,
    congrats to the happy couple.​


    Treir stops what she was doing, still neutral.


    TREIR
    You’re moving in with John?

    HETIK
    It’s not decided yet. I hope so. ​


    Treir nods silently, absorbing that without reaction.


    TREIR
    Well then, congrats to you too.
    Excuse me, I’ve got to grab the
    spring wine from the store room. ​


    She turns and walks towards the store room. Quark turns and pinpoints Hetik with a finger and a shout.


    QUARK
    You! About time you got here.

    HETIK
    But I’m not -

    QUARK
    Don’t wanna hear it. I hope those
    muscles are not just for show,
    because I’ve got eight crates of
    Kandora champagne in the store
    room and they need bringing
    out here and chilling. Move! ​


    Quark is clearly in slave master mode, so Hetik just gets on with it. He heads towards the store room...


    20 INT. DS9 - QUARK’S BAR - STORE ROOM


    The door to the store room opens and Hetik enters...

    ...to find Treir standing there among the crates, WIPING TEARS from her eyes. She instantly reacts, embarrassed and trying to cover, not wanting to be seen like this.


    TREIR
    What? ​


    Stunned, Hetik approaches gently, not wanting to crowd her.


    HETIK
    Hey... what’s wrong?

    TREIR
    Nothing. Nothing’s wrong. What
    did you want?

    HETIK
    Quark sent me in here to get the
    champagne -

    TREIR
    (half-points)
    It’s over there.

    HETIK
    - but I think there’s something
    more important I need to deal
    with first. Is it the wedding?

    TREIR
    (lying)
    Yes. Yes, that’s it, absolutely.
    I’m crying about the wedding.​


    Hetik comes closer, thinking he’s on safe ground now.


    HETIK
    Never took you for the sentimental
    type. But I tend to get emotional
    at weddings too. I have done ever
    since the orphanage. I guess I’m
    just a hopeless romantic.

    TREIR
    (smile through
    the tears)
    Yeah. Hopeless. That’s me.

    HETIK
    It’ll happen for you one day,
    Treir. Don’t give up yet.​


    Hetik quickly gives Treir a half-hug and a chaste peck on the cheek. Then he turns and hefts up one of the crates she pointed out, carrying it effortlessly out of the room.

    Treir stays where she was, watching him go...


    FADE OUT


    END OF ACT TWO
     
  6. lvsxy808

    lvsxy808 Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    Joined:
    Jun 29, 2001
    Location:
    London
    ACT THREE


    FADE IN


    21 INT. DS9 - SHRINE


    Kira stands framed by the oval archway of the shrine apse, wearing a humble but beautiful version of her monk’s robes. She smiles beneficently, filled with joy at the occasion. Candles adorn the walls, the room is packed with guests.

    Starfleet officers stand in pure dress whites - EVIK, NOG, TENMEI and Candlewood. Bajoran Militia officers in their own lilac dress uniforms - Major CENN and Doctor AYLAM. Civilians, Bajorans and otherwise, in their Sunday best.

    Clerics enter the room carrying twinkling chimes, swinging incense burners. The crowd makes a passage to allow these to move down the middle of the room towards Kira. Once there they move to each side, along the front wall.

    A GONG sounds, and the crowd hushes in anticipation.

    After a moment, Commander RO steps into the entry wearing her dress whites, guiding Sergeant ETANA by the arm. The Bajoran bride is wearing stunning golden robes, with an elaborate earring draping gracefully over her shoulder.

    Both beaming with smiles, they walk down the centre of the room, everyone’s eyes following their progress. Once at the front, they stand to Kira’s right.

    The GONG sounds again, and everyone’s eyes turn...

    Doctor BASHIR steps in, also in dress whites, nurse RICHTER on his arm. The human bride also wears Bajoran robes in a complementary shade of gold, and an elaborate earring. This pairing moves through the crowd, ending up at Kira’s left.

    The GONG sounds a third time, and all the Bajoran guests kneel silently onto cushions on the deck. The non-Bajoran guests follow their lead. Kira smiles to Ro and Bashir...


    KIRA
    Thank you both. ​


    Taking their cue, Ro and Bashir let go of their charges’ arms and step back, joining the crowd on their knees. Etana and Richter now stand alone, facing each other across Kira.


    KIRA
    Thank you all for joining us on
    this blessed occasion. Nothing so
    pleases the Prophets as to see two
    of their children share the love
    that is at the core of every pagh,
    and pledge to walk the same path.
    (beat)
    This is most true in the darkest
    of times - because the light that
    Etana Kol and Kristen Richter
    bring to each other’s lives, and
    to the lives of everyone gathered
    here to witness it, banishes that
    darkness as surely as the light
    of the Prophets themselves.
    (beat)
    Who bears the dais? ​


    The kneeling crowd looks around, and three PUPPIES enter. These are the three girl puppies - FETT, KETT and WETT. Each of them wears a load-bearing harness, and they move in formation, because balanced across the three harnesses is a DAIS, and on the dais is a BOWL of water. Fett looks behind her, seeing her mother SETT encouraging them on.

    As the group moves cautiously down the line, the crowd AWWWs. They reach the front, and Etana and Richter both crouch down, picking up the bowl of water between them. That done, the puppy-amalgam scuttles off to stand by Ro. Tenmei whispers to Nog...


    TENMEI
    Nice work on the dais rig-up.

    NOG
    Considering I only had about two
    hours, and I nearly lost my lunch
    a couple of times attaching it to
    them, I’m quite proud of it. ​


    As Etana and Richter both hold the bowl (revealing that they are now both wearing pledge bracelets) and gaze at each other across it, Kira speaks...


    KIRA
    Boray pree hadokee. Tolata impara
    boresh. Preeya Kristen, preeya Kol,
    abrem varo atel.
    (beat)
    For the non-Bajorans among us,
    that means... May you drink from
    the Tears of the Prophets, binding
    Kristen and Kol, so that you walk
    this path together, forever. ​


    Without either letting go of the bowl, first Etana and then Richter both sip from it. Then they gently lower it to the deck. Then holding left hands, they simultaneously reach up with their right and gently grasp the other’s left ear.


    KIRA
    Your pagh is one. You are joined
    in the eyes of the Prophets, and
    so in the eyes of everyone here.
    (smirk)
    You may both kiss the bride. ​


    Etana and Richter lean in to KISS, and the room explodes in CHEERS and APPLAUSE. Kira beams with happiness. Eventually the brides separate with wide grins, and turn to the crowd.


    ETANA
    Thanks so much, everyone. It
    means a lot to us both that you
    would all be here with us.

    RICHTER
    Yes... thank you all.

    KIRA
    Congratulations to you both.
    But... there’s one last thing. ​


    This is a surprise to both brides. Kira steps aside, and we see that hidden behind her all this time...

    ...is an ORB BOX. Etana and Richter had been so focused on each other that they hadn’t even noticed it. The crowd hushes as Kira walks behind the Box.


    KIRA
    By special permission of the Kai
    herself...
    (Etana’s
    jaw drops)
    ...and with the help of DS-Nine’s
    commander and chief of security...
    (Kira nods thanks
    to Ro and Evik)
    ...I have brought the Orb of
    Destiny, so that the brides may
    begin their journey secure in the
    knowledge of all the joy to come.​


    Etana is overwhelmed. The chance for an Orb Experience is something an ordinary everyday Bajoran like her dreams of but never believes will actually happen.

    On the other hand, Richter is hesitant. She doesn’t want to make a scene or seem ungrateful, but she has questions.

    Etana sees the look on her now-wife’s face, and pulls her in close, touching foreheads so that the crowd might think they are whispering sweet romantic nothings.


    ETANA
    (whisper)
    What is it? What’s wrong?

    RICHTER
    Do we really want to know the
    future? I mean, what if...?

    ETANA
    Don’t worry. The Prophets will
    take care of us. We’re on their
    path now.

    RICHTER
    But... in front of everyone?

    ETANA
    It’s with the blessings of the
    Kai. I think we kind of have to.​


    After a moment’s thought, Kristen nods subtly, still unsure but willing to go through with it. They step apart, turn back to Kira, and KNEEL before the Orb Box.

    Kira reverently OPENS the box, revealing the slowly turning hourglass shape within, glowing with its ethereal light. As Etana and Richter hold hands and gaze into the Orb, the ENERGY SWIRLS out of the box, filling the room and...


    WHITE OUT


    Then PULL BACK from the bright light to reveal...


    22 DISCO BALL


    Spinning in the air, lights and colours glinting off it as fun and light-hearted MUSIC plays.


    Continue to PULL BACK...


    23 INT. DS9 - QUARK’S BAR


    The mirrored disco ball lights Quark’s Bar, which is now half classy wedding reception hall and half nightclub. The streamers and flowers gleam in the reflected light.

    PANNING DOWN to the main floor, where Etana and Richter dance together, happy and relaxed. Around them, the wedding guests and others all dance as well, in pairs or in groups.

    Around the edges and on the balconies, small candles light every table, where more partiers sit with drinks and food.

    Back on the dance floor, Candlewood is teaching Prynn and Nog how to do the STATUS QUO SHOULDER DANCE (google it), and they are all laughing and having a great time.

    As the MUSIC changes to a new song, Candlewood leaves his friends to continue dancing on their own, and makes his way across the floor to the DABO TABLE. Hetik is busy guiding the game, but smiles wide at his boyfriend’s arrival.


    HETIK
    That’s two down for the lady in
    the blue, and a risky five over
    for the gentleman from Relliketh.
    Here we go, eyes down...​


    Hetik SPINS the wheel and THROWS the jack with a flourish. Everyone watches spellbound as the wheel spins and spins...


    HETIK
    Dabo!​


    Everyone CHEERS - the lady in blue has won. Even the man from Relliketh can’t feel too bad - he is having fun too. Hetik hands over some modest winnings to the woman.


    HETIK
    Congratulations! Make sure to
    celebrate with a drink from the
    bar. Dealer takes a break, but
    don’t go far - I’ll be back in
    just a few minutes. ​


    The crowd around the table moves away. Hetik turns to Candlewood with a grin, and takes him into his arms.


    HETIK
    You look amazing in that uniform.

    CANDLEWOOD
    Me? It’s you they can’t take their
    eyes off. And I can see why.
    (kiss)
    I love watching you work. It’s
    like you have this magical hold
    over them.​


    As John gazes up into Hetik’s eyes, it’s clear that he feels the same way.

    Across the room, Ro leans against the bar, flanked on one side by Quark and on the other by Kira. All three observe the happy dancing crowd - especially Etana and Richter at the centre of the floor.


    RO
    They seem happy.

    QUARK
    I should hope so.

    RO
    What I mean is, whatever they
    saw in that Orb vision, it can’t
    have put them off too much.

    QUARK
    You think that’s good news for
    the rest of us?

    KIRA
    We can’t ask. Orb experiences
    are private. Even a prylar doesn’t
    have the right to intrude.

    RO
    But you wish you could?

    KIRA
    (evasive)
    They’re happy. That’s all that
    matters. ​


    Ro’s combadge CHIRPS.


    ALECO (comm)
    Ops to Commander Ro.

    RO
    (taps to receive)
    Stand by, Ensign.
    (to Quark and Kira)
    If you’ll excuse me.​


    Ro leaves them to find a quiet corner where she can talk freely and without having to shout over the music. Once she has, she TAPS her combadge again.


    RO
    Right, sorry about that, Vel.
    What’s up?

    ALECO (comm)
    Sorry to interrupt, Commander.
    I just thought you might want to
    know, we got the latest report
    from Starfleet Command.​


    Ro’s face drops - what horrors is she about to hear?

    Back out on the dance floor, Etana and Richter still have pride of place in the centre as the MUSIC plays.


    ETANA
    You okay?

    RICHTER
    Very, very okay. You?​


    In answer, Etana grabs her new wife by the waist and SPINS them both around. The couple SWIRLS ecstatically beneath the dappled lights of the mirror ball, and Richter THROWS her head back, letting her long blonde hair fly free. Around them, the crowd WHOOPS with delight. Nog and Prynn punch the air in joy. Arms around each other, John and Hetik CHEER at the sight. From the bar, Quark and Kira grin wide to see the display.

    Among all this, Ro returns from her quiet corner and stands between Quark and Kira again. She is clearly putting a brave face on it, for the sake of the party.


    QUARK
    Everything alright?

    RO
    Fine. Just a standard station
    status update. Ensign Aleco’s
    running Ops by himself, I think
    he’s a bit nervous. Nothing to
    worry about.

    KIRA
    You sure?

    RO
    Absolutely.
    (re crowd)
    They’re happy. That’s all that
    matters.​


    Ro feels guilty about lying to them, but she can’t allow what is going on out there to spoil this happy occasion.

    Kira can very easily guess what Ro is not telling them, but she knows the responsibilities of command, and empathises.

    Quark knows that Ro is lying to them both, and feels sorry for Ro having to carry this. He wishes he could help more.

    Etana and Richter bring their spiralling to a stop with a delighted laugh, all worries and sorrows forgotten.

    Ro watches all of this, forcing her face to keep a happy smile that she does not feel inside...


    FADE OUT


    END OF ACT THREE
     
  7. lvsxy808

    lvsxy808 Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    Joined:
    Jun 29, 2001
    Location:
    London
    ACT FOUR


    FADE IN


    24 EXT. SPACE


    A star system with what appears to be a massive asteroid belt - except that the belt is made up of dark and angular fragments of metal and artificial materials.


    25 INT. AVENTINE - BRIDGE


    Cmdr Bowers observes this image on the Aventine’s giant viewscreen. The debris belt is growing larger the closer Aventine gets to it, Bowers’ anxiety rising with it. OPS manager MIRREN (human female) speaks up.


    MIRREN
    Two minutes until the alien craft
    enters optimal sensor range.

    BOWERS
    I want a detailed threat assess-
    ment as soon as possible.

    KEDAIR
    Aye sir. ​


    Captain Dax stands over Mavroidis’ shoulder at the helm, likewise spellbound by the view on the screen. Bowers gets up from his chair and stands with her.


    DAX
    Sam... do you notice anything
    unusual about that debris field?

    BOWERS
    It all looks the same to me.

    DAX
    That’s what I mean. The colour,
    the composition - it’s obviously a
    starship graveyard, but I’ve never
    seen one this uniform. Have you?

    BOWERS
    Could they all be from the same ship?

    DAX
    My guess is it’s from thousands
    of identical ships.

    BOWERS
    Mirren - run a scan on the debris.
    See if you can identify it. ​


    Mirren works her panels, and almost immediately looks up in mixed horror and amazement.


    MIRREN
    It’s Borg. All of it. The entire ring.

    KEDAIR
    Thirty seconds to contact with
    alien craft.

    BOWERS
    (quiet)
    Captain, please - we’re clearly in
    Borg territory. Not to mention
    thirty seconds away from whatever
    managed to overpower and destroy
    several thousands of Borg ships.
    I strongly recommend we withdraw.

    DAX
    Sam, this could be just what we
    need. These people, whoever they
    are, they’re clearly no fan of the
    Borg. They might help us.

    BOWERS
    And they might not.

    KEDAIR
    Visual contact.

    DAX
    On screen.​


    The main viewscreen refocuses, concentrating on the alien craft approaching them. Dax watches with fascination... This object is not a starship, and not a normal space-going life-form. It appears to be a simple BALL OF ENERGY, a coruscation of colours with no obvious means of propulsion.

    Mavroidis suddenly stands from her chair, catching Dax off guard so that she and Bowers back away. Mavroidis turns awkwardly to look at Dax and Bowers, acting like someone who is not familiar with operating a humanoid body. The Ullian woman regards Dax with a blank stare, and her VOICE sounds doubled with an ethereal quality.


    MAVROIDIS
    You are not Borg. ​


    Dax realises this is a first contact situation - and a very delicate one. Meanwhile Kedair subtly beckons Bowers over to her console. He goes, leaving Dax to handle this.


    DAX
    To whom am I speaking?

    MAVROIDIS
    We are the children of the storm.

    DAX
    I’m Captain Ezri Dax of the -

    MAVROIDIS
    You are trespassers. But you
    are not Borg, so you may live
    - if you depart now.​


    At the tactical console, Helkara and Bowers have joined Kedair, all looking over the computer’s scan of the entity. They speak low so as not to interrupt Dax’s talk with it.


    KEDAIR
    An energy shell, a spherical
    force-field with no apparent
    source of power or projection.

    HELKARA
    Surrounding an atmosphere of
    incredibly dense, super-hot liquid
    hydrogen laced with trace metals.

    KEDAIR
    And hundreds of individual energy
    signatures that I would have to
    characterise as life signs.​


    Dax is still talking with the entity inhabiting Mavroidis.


    DAX
    We only wish to establish peaceful
    contact and communication, on
    behalf of -

    MAVROIDIS
    Contact is not desired. It has
    taken many centuries to purge
    this space of Borg. We will not
    allow it to be defiled again.

    DAX
    I understand. We are engaged in
    a conflict with the Borg ourselves.
    Perhaps if you could help us
    understand -

    MAVROIDIS
    No. Reverse your course and make
    no attempt to violate our space.​


    Helkara and Kedair continue to wrestle information out of the computer, growing more amazed with every bit of data.


    HELKARA
    I’d posit this species evolved in a
    gas giant. Their energy patterns
    are also consistent with lifeforms
    with a high level of telekinesis
    and other psionic talents.

    BOWERS
    That’s how they’re talking through
    Mavroidis - because she’s Ullian.

    HELKARA
    Exactly. I think this species might
    have mastered space travel - even
    warp flight - through the power
    of thought alone.​


    Dax is still trying to convince the entity. This could be a life line to defeating the Borg...


    DAX
    Perhaps we could return at some
    future time -

    MAVROIDIS
    We do not wish you to return.
    Ever.

    DAX
    (sags, resigned)
    Very well. We’ll leave - as soon
    as you release your hold on
    our conn officer.

    MAVROIDIS
    It is done.​


    Mavroidis’s eyes flutter and she staggers on the spot, losing her balance. Dax rushes to support her. Clearing her head, Mavroidis gets her body back under control.


    MAVROIDIS
    I’m alright, Captain.

    DAX
    Resume your post, Lieutenant. Then
    reverse course to the subspace
    aperture, maximum warp.

    MAVROIDIS
    Aye, sir.​


    As the Ullian woman follows her orders, and the view on the screen swerves away from the debris field, Dax returns to her command chair. Bowers takes his own seat next to her.


    BOWERS
    I’m sorry, Captain.
    (she grunts
    noncommittally)
    Based on Kedair and Helkara’s
    readings, I didn’t see anything
    that looked like a conventional
    weapon. And one good shot
    from a phaser should have been
    enough to burst their bubble.

    DAX
    Then how did they manage to
    fight off that many Borg ships?

    BOWERS
    Captain... I think this is one of
    those times we should just be glad
    we didn’t find out the hard way.​


    Dax is forced to agree, but still - she is disappointed.


    26 EXT. SPACE


    Aventine heads back the way it came, away from the debris ringed system and its offer of hope...


    27 INT. DS9 - QUARK’S BAR


    The evening has now moved on a bit. Etana and Richter are still dancing, but to slower, more romantic music. The disco ball spins more calmly, casting a pleasant twinkle.

    Other couples slow-dance as well, Hetik and John included. Those who are not couples - like Kira, Bashir, Nog, Tenmei and Cenn - sit at tables around the edges of the floor.

    Quark works urgently behind the bar, mixing and handing out drinks to his various Ferengi waiters before shooing them on their way. Ro stands out of the flow of traffic.


    RO
    Where’s Treir?

    QUARK
    Damned if I know.

    RO
    Want me to track her down?

    QUARK
    She knows the penalty for not
    showing up to work. If she
    doesn’t want to be here, she
    doesn’t ever have to come back.​


    On the dance floor, Candlewood and Hetik are slow-dancing, both smiling comfortably, immersed in the romance.


    HETIK
    I wish I could have been at the
    ceremony with you.

    CANDLEWOOD
    It was nice. I’ve never been to a
    Bajoran wedding ceremony before.
    But why don’t the couple actually
    say anything, though? It was all
    Kira - Richter and Etana didn’t
    say a word.

    HETIK
    Why do they need to? The Prophets
    already know what’s in their hearts.
    That’s all that matters.
    (beat)
    John... about us living together.

    CANDLEWOOD
    Hetik, today’s been such a rush,
    for both of us. I haven’t had a
    second to think. It’s not a no -

    HETIK
    No, wait. I was just thinking...
    why not skip that part altogether?
    Why don’t we get married too?

    CANDLEWOOD
    (bark of laughter)
    Ha! Yeah, right.

    HETIK
    I’m serious. I know what’s in my
    heart. I’m pretty sure I know
    what’s in yours. And look at
    how happy Kristen and Kol are.
    I want that for us.​


    Candlewood stops dancing, looks at Hetik in shock.


    CANDLEWOOD
    Wait... you actually are serious.

    HETIK
    Yes, I’m serious. I’m asking you
    to marry me, John. Will you?​


    Candlewood stutters and splutters, totally caught off guard, flustered and overwhelmed, no idea what to say.


    CANDLEWOOD
    But y-... wh... No!

    HETIK
    (jaw drops)
    I’m sorry?

    CANDLEWOOD
    I... look, I s-... j-... No! Hetik,
    are you insane? We are not get-
    ting married. We’ve been dating
    for less than a year, and -

    HETIK
    (steps back)
    And that’s enough for you to know
    you don’t want to marry me?

    CANDLEWOOD
    (reaches for him)
    What? No, that’s not -

    HETIK
    (throws him off)
    Then what? I’m just a bit of fun
    for you, is that it? A good time
    until you get bored?​


    Candlewood is very aware they’re in public, and doesn’t want to make a scene. But he’s completely flustered...


    CANDLEWOOD
    Look, we’re both tired and a bit
    drunk, let’s just take a moment -

    HETIK
    I don’t think I need a moment.​


    Hetik steps away from Candlewood and begins to walk off the dance floor. John reaches for him, tries to grab his arm...


    CANDLEWOOD
    Hetik, wait! Let me explain...

    HETIK
    Oh, I think you’ve said plenty.
    I’m just glad you said it before
    I wasted any more time on...
    this. See you around, John.​


    Hetik tears his arm free of John’s grip and heads off the dance floor, and out of the bar altogether. John is left standing alone and abandoned on the dance floor, surrounded by happy romantic couples, watching the love of his life walk away in a fury...


    FADE OUT


    END OF ACT FOUR
     
  8. lvsxy808

    lvsxy808 Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    Joined:
    Jun 29, 2001
    Location:
    London
    ACT FIVE


    FADE IN


    28 INT. DS9 - QUARK’S BAR


    It is down to the last few now. The music still plays, but no-one is dancing. They all sit at tables around the edge of an empty dance floor.

    Etana and Richter are engaged completely in each other, talking quietly MOS over glasses of champagne.

    Kira sits at a table with Evik and Cenn, swapping tales.

    Candlewood sits gazing into the distance, dumbfounded and stunned, while Nog and Tenmei unsuccessfully offer comfort.

    Ro sits on a stool at the bar, while Quark pours her one last drink. She takes it and goes to sit with Bashir.

    Once she has gone, Quark puts away his cloth and pulls out his box of isolinear rods from under the counter. He selects one, turns and slots it into the computer on the back wall, and works the controls.


    COMPUTER
    Searching for Orion life signs.
    (beat)
    Life signs found.

    QUARK
    Display.​


    Quark reads the results. Then he removes the isolinear rod, stashes it away again, and looks around the bar. There is no Hetik or Treir, only his Ferengi waiters. But it’s so quiet that that’s probably enough.

    Pausing to make sure no-one is watching him, Quark lays down his cleaning cloth and walks out of the bar.


    29 INT. DS9 - HABITAT RING CORRIDOR


    Quark walks along the corridor, worry creasing his brow.

    He reaches a door, and presses the door CHIME. No response. Worried, he presses the CHIME again. Still no response.

    Determined, he checks both directions down the corridor to be sure he is safe. Then he crouches, pulls a TOOL out of his jacket, and uses it to pop open a panel above the deck.

    Pulling out another isolinear rod, he inserts it and works more controls. He hears the door UNLOCK, so he retrieves his tools and stands, entering...


    30 INT. DS9 - TREIR’S QUARTERS


    Not seen since DS9 10x08 “Property Values”. The room is in low lighting, with clothes thrown haphazardly across every surface, half-finished plates of food left on the counters. There has been no break-in - this is just how she lives.

    As Quark steps over the threshold, he spots Treir huddled in a corner, her knees drawn up to her chest. She wears a glamorous dabo dress, but with shoes off, hair unstyled, and her make-up running from the tears.

    But she is all cried out now. She holds an ornate KNIFE in both hands, and her eyes are fixed upon it. She glances up unimpressed at Quark’s arrival, then returns to the knife.


    TREIR
    Typical man. Can’t take no for
    an answer.

    QUARK
    You weren’t at the bar.

    TREIR
    So you came to find me - out of
    the goodness of your lobes.

    QUARK
    Well, I made sure the party was
    taken care of first. But then...
    yeah, I did. You’re my employee.
    A happy employee is a productive
    employee. You taught me that
    yourself. And you’re not happy.

    TREIR
    Doctor Bashir better watch out -
    we’ve got another genius on the
    station. Leave me alone, Quark.​


    Once again not taking no for an answer, Quark instead kneels on the deck in front of her, far enough away not to spook her, as she is clearly in emotional turmoil.


    QUARK
    (re knife)
    That looks valuable.

    TREIR
    It’s not. It’s an Orion tejar-mas
    blade. Had it for years. It was
    the only thing I had on me when
    you took me from Malic’s ship.​


    Quark remains silent. She is not really talking to him - she is just talking, and he happens to be there.


    TREIR (cont)
    The slave girls always kept a
    blade handy... in case the males
    your master loaned you to got a
    bit over-aggressive. It’s coated
    in cylanite. One cut is fatal.​


    And here Treir is, with this poison knife unsheathed, alone in her room, tears on her face. The realisation comes to Quark - she means to kill herself with it. Absorbing that silently, he cautiously reaches out...


    QUARK
    Could I see it?​


    With the tiniest incremental movement of the knife and her steely gaze, Treir makes it clear he should not do that. He lowers his hand again, letting it go. Treir settles back.


    QUARK
    Treir... I don’t want you to do this.

    TREIR
    It’s a long time since I’ve given
    a damn what any male wants
    me to do or not do, Quark.

    QUARK
    I don’t understand. What happened?

    TREIR
    Are you really that blind? They’re
    all up there, laughing and dancing
    and drinking... loving... and none
    of it matters. They’re all lying to
    themselves.
    (beat)
    I’ve been a slave before, Quark.
    I’m never going back to that
    again. I will not be a slave to
    Malic, to you... or to the Borg.​


    She grips the knife tighter, as if preparing for her way out of that eventuality. Quark understands now.


    QUARK
    If it helps... I don’t think the
    Borg are enslaving anyone these
    days. They’re just killing them.​


    A small flare of anger - but it’s enough to break the ice. He has got her to respond to him, engage with him.


    QUARK
    Treir... this is not the way.

    TREIR
    It’s my way.

    QUARK
    Is it? Or were you just sitting
    here waiting for someone to
    come and talk you out of it?

    TREIR
    You think I won’t do it? I’m
    too scared?

    QUARK
    I didn’t say that.

    TREIR
    Because believe me, Quark - I am
    the most scared I have ever been.
    They’re coming, and they won’t
    stop, not until they’ve killed
    everyone and everything.

    QUARK
    Maybe not.

    TREIR
    Oh, please.

    QUARK
    I’m serious. If there’s one thing
    I’ve learned from living on this
    profit-forsaken station, it’s that
    Starfleet always finds a way. They
    will fight and fight, until they pull
    some ridiculous last-minute
    solution out of their ears. They
    don’t even know what it is yet,
    but I guarantee you it’s there.

    TREIR
    That’s sweet, Quark. I don’t have
    that faith.

    QUARK
    Didn’t you say you’re a chameleon?
    Whatever happens, you’ll find a
    way to make it work, to survive?

    TREIR
    There is no surviving this, Quark!

    QUARK
    And what if there is? You do this
    now, you’d be dead anyway. You’ll
    never know if you were right.

    TREIR
    That’s your argument? Don’t
    kill yourself, wait and see if
    someone else does it for you?
    (brandishes knife)
    This is my way out, Quark. This
    is how I escape all of this, and
    I am in control of it.

    QUARK
    Yes, yes you are. I won’t take
    that away. I won’t stop you if you
    decide to do this. I’m just really
    hoping to persuade you not to.

    TREIR
    Why?!

    QUARK
    Because you’re a good dabo girl,
    a damn good assistant manager,
    way better than my idiot brother...
    and I don’t want to lose you.

    TREIR
    So it’s all about your profit.

    QUARK
    Would you believe me if I said
    anything else?

    TREIR
    (small chuckle)
    Probably not.​


    Quark relaxes a little - these tiny displays of emotion are an encouraging sign. She is not completely out of reach.


    QUARK
    Those people up there... they’re
    not lying to themselves. They’re
    just doing what they need to
    do to get through it. We’re all
    feeling it, believe me.
    (emphatic)
    All of us. We each have our own
    ways of handling it, that’s all.​


    MONTAGE


    31 INT. DS9 - QUARK’S BAR


    Nog, Tenmei and Candlewood doing the Status Quo dance...


    QUARK (v.o.)
    Nog and his friends... they’re just
    getting on with their everyday
    lives, acting like nothing’s wrong,
    because that’s how they cope.​


    32 INT. AVENTINE - BRIDGE


    Dax sits in her command chair, keeping a tight lid on her disappointment as she watches the streaks of the subspace tunnel on the viewscreen, heading home empty-handed.


    QUARK (v.o.)
    Dax, Sisko, Vaughn, Bowers, Shar...
    they’re out there hunting for that
    solution I mentioned. The answer
    to the whole mess.​


    33 INT. DS9 - QUARK’S BAR


    Etana and Richter slow-dancing under the twinkling lights of the disco ball, holding each other tight...


    QUARK (v.o.)
    Etana and Richter... they’re
    making this grand gesture of
    defiance. Telling an uncaring
    universe, “No, we will be happy,
    no matter what you do to us.” ​


    34 INT. DS9 - SHRINE


    Kira performs the wedding ceremony...


    QUARK (v.o.)
    Kira... she’s doing whatever she
    can to help... anyone. Everyone.​


    35 INT. DS9 - QUARK’S BAR


    Ro stands between Kira and Quark, not telling either of them about the latest reports from Starfleet...


    QUARK (v.o.)
    Ro’s keeping a brave face, for all
    the people who look up to her
    to be in charge, in control.​


    END MONTAGE


    36 INT. DS9 - TREIR’S QUARTERS


    During all this, Treir has been captured in Quark’s eyes - she does not notice he has silently crept forwards.


    QUARK
    And me... I’m doing what I do. As
    long as they’re in my bar, dancing
    and drinking... loving... they’re not
    worrying about the rest of it. They
    all know it’s there, they all know
    they’re going to have to face it
    sooner or later. But if I can just
    give them a moment’s respite,
    a moment’s distraction... then
    that’s how I cope with it.

    TREIR
    So why can’t you accept that this - ​


    She looks down at the knife in her hands... finding to her surprise that Quark is now holding her hands in his own.


    TREIR (cont)
    ...is how I cope with it?

    QUARK
    Because this isn’t coping. It’s
    running away.

    TREIR
    And don’t I have the right to
    do that if I want?

    QUARK
    I guess. But I still think it’s a bad
    idea. I think you should do what
    you’ve always done. Survive.
    Outsmart it. Just keep doing
    whatever you need to, to make it
    one more day. I’ll be with you.
    (beat)
    And if it comes to it... I’ll be
    here with you then too. Just
    promise me there’s enough
    poison on there for two.

    TREIR
    (shocked)
    Quark, no...​


    Quark shrugs sadly - why not? As if suddenly disgusted by it, Treir THROWS the knife away.

    Then she throws her arms around Quark’s shoulders, and he around hers. She lays her head on his shoulder, the tears starting to flow again.

    And Quark holds her, letting her cry.


    FADE OUT


    END OF SHOW