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"Aftermath" (For neth_dugan)

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Dec. 5th, 2006 | 10:20 am
mood: artisticartistic
music: "Limon y Sal," Julieta Venegas
posted by: nyssa23 in ds9ficathon

Title: "Aftermath"
Author: nyssa23
Written for: neth_dugan
Word Count: 1122
Rating: G
Summary: Set about six months after "What You Leave Behind." After the war, Kira and Jake are uneasy with Bajor's new relationship to the absent Emissary.
Author's Notes: I hope the recipient enjoys this story as much as I enjoyed writing it! (Hopefully you will, because a sequel is already in the planning stages.) Thanks to my ever-patient husband for beta reading.

Colonel Kira Nerys tugged absentmindedly at the shoulder of her Starfleet uniform as she looked over administrative reports. It wasn't that the uniform was uncomfortable, exactly--just the opposite. It was almost absurdly comfortable, form-fitting yet light enough to move smoothly, unlike the Bajoran militia uniform with its stiff trousers and short jacket. Still, in its own way, the old red uniform had made her feel comfortable among her people, a part of the struggle, separate from the Federation. Kira permitted herself a wry grin. She was used to struggle, and it would be a long time before she could truly believe that the Dominion War was over; it was only since she had witnessed the destruction on Cardassia Prime that she had begun to make her peace with the end of the Occupation. The Prophets said that all oppressors would eventually themselves feel the sting of the lash, but she could take no joy in the fall of Cardassia. Seeing the smoldering crater which had once been Lakarian City had cured her of that. And, unlike her own people, the Cardassians had no gods to see them through their pain, nothing to believe in but their own egos. Kira couldn't imagine a lonelier way to live.

In the months since the Prophets had called their Emissary to them, Kira had sat often in this office holding Sisko's baseball, contemplating its stitches and nicks, as if it were an Orb, as if it could tell her what Sisko would do in a given situation. It was silly, she knew, but it helped her feel like he would return. And ever since the changes had come to Bajor, she'd been truly wishing--praying--for his return. After the apostasy, disgrace, and death of Winn Adami, the Vedek Assembly had tried to restore purity and dignity to the office of Kai by choosing a successor from a more liberal order. But Kai Naran had his hands full trying both to manage the fractious Vedeks who wanted Winn's conservative order punished--or even disbanded entirely--and to deal with the growing Cult of the Emissary.

It had started simply enough: a few Bajorans chanting outside the Fire Caves, leaving the occasional wreath or miniature icon near their entrance. But before long, the devotions had increased in frequency and in fervor. Many Bajoran homes now held holo-photos of the Emissary copied from the archives of the Federation News Service or hand-painted icons depicting a giant Sisko in simple farmer's clothes holding Deep Space Nine in one outstretched hand and Bajor in the other. Several times a month, small groups of pilgrims came to worship in the station's shrine and to see the place where their Emissary had lived and worked.

Kira could understand why the cult would seem attractive to some Bajorans; in the chaos of the Dominion War, their Kai had turned from the true path, had abandoned the Prophets and, by extension, all of Bajor. The faith of the people had been shaken at a time when they most needed a strong leader. But Kira felt this wasn't right either. Captain Sisko, she knew, never wanted to be worshipped by the Bajoran people--even Ha'mara had been awkward for him. Ha'mara. Kira winced. Even now, events were being planned for the holiday, and she was sure that for its first celebration since the Emissary had been called to the Celestial Temple, they would be elaborate indeed. She made a mental note to order increased security on the station for the duration of the festival.

All the attention had been tough on Jake, too. Kira felt that the two of them had at last gotten to be real friends, and she could see the strain beginning to tell on the young man; it seemed Jake was always trying to take on too much, trying to be the man his father was. His grandfather Joseph had been anxious for Jake to return home to New Orleans, but Jake refused as he had since the beginning of the war. Kira knew that Jake felt responsible for Kasidy too, despite her protestations that she could take care of herself and the baby. And once the baby was born, who knew how that would affect Jake? At least he had his writing, and Nog; the two young men still spent as much time together as Nog's increased responsibilities would allow.

The console at Kira's side signaled an incoming communication; turning, she saw that it was coming from Jake's quarters. They were supposed to have lunch at the Replimat today, so it seemed odd that he would be calling. As she punched up the call, Kira could see that this was something serious. "Jake? What's going on?"

"Nerys." Jake sounded panicked. "Kasidy just called from Bajor, and she says there's something weird going on there. Something she thinks we need to see."


Conscious of Jake's fidgeting behind her, Kira piloted the runabout into orbit around Bajor; for once, she didn't feel the familiar rush of nostalgia upon seeing the green seas of home. She couldn't believe what Kasidy had told Jake--but if it was true, then things might be getting worse on Bajor than she had previously thought. The First Minister and the Vedek Assembly would have to take action, and quickly. But how could anyone legislate people's beliefs?

"All right, Jake, let's go. I've put in Kasidy's coordinates." Her heart sank. Kendra Province. It was true, then.

The hum of the transporter brought Jake and Kira down to a place instantly familiar--the land Captain Sisko had bought during the war, the land to which he had planned to retire. Bajorans worked busily over a half-constructed house, the same house Jake had seen his father build in model form, the house he thought no one but the family and Kira knew about. Kasidy stood nearby, despite the efforts of the cultists who were trying to steer her to a chair on an improvised dais in the shade.

Kira stepped forward. "This is private property. On whose authority are you here?"

A man in crimson and gray robes walked to where Jake and Kira stood. "Jake Sisko, son of the Emissary, you honor us with your presence. And Colonel Kira, I think you of all people should understand what we're doing."

He motioned towards the house. "We are carrying out the wishes of our Emissary, constructing the house exactly according to his plans. When it is finished, he will return to us."

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Comments {9}


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from: psychicvanity
date: May. 7th, 2010 03:33 pm (UTC)

I like this a whole lot. It's just too cool. Great work!!

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from: nyssa23
date: May. 10th, 2010 02:51 am (UTC)

Thank you so much! :D Sorry work on the sequel has stalled, but I can tell you I envisioned it as part one of a trilogy. Perhaps someday...

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