Kira heads to Cardassia as part of a new exchange, but her visit soon comes under attack...
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Deep Space Nine Characters:
Ensemble Cast - DS9, Kira Nerys
DS9 Season 14 - "Zero Sum Game"
21 May 2022 Updated:
21 May 2022
1. Teaser by lvsxy808
2. Act One by lvsxy808
3. Act Two by lvsxy808
4. Act Three by lvsxy808
5. Act Four by lvsxy808
6. Act Five by lvsxy808
7. Meanwhile... by lvsxy808
1 EXT. VANADWAN MONASTERY - DAY
The cluster of ancient buildings clinging precariously to the mountaintop, connected by winding paths and walkways.
2 INT. VANADWAN MONASTERY - KIRA’S ROOM - DAY
KIRA walks past us carrying a handful of clothes. She is dressed in the travelling outfit again rather than robes. RAIQ the Ascendant follows her around, badgering her...
But why must you leave again?
Kira tucks the clothes into a duffel bag and goes back for the next pile of things, Raiq tailing her all the way...
I told you already - with their
new membership in the Khitomer
Accords, Cardassia is opening up
to Federation citizens again. It’s
an honour just to be invited.
Kira keeps moving back and forth, packing for her trip.
This does not answer my question.
Why you must be the one to leave.
This is your monastery. You are
no negotiator, no longer even a
soldier. Let others face danger.
There is no danger on Cardassia
anymore, Raiq. We’re friends now.
But you despise these Cardassians.
You have told me so many times.
I used to. Like you used to hate
the Bajorans, remember?
She smirks teasingly at the Ascendant woman who has become her friend, and carries on packing.
But so soon. You have only just
returned from afar. Your place
is here. Your people need you.
Kira stops and turns to Raiq, smiling softly. She gets it.
I’ve gotten used to having you
around too. But I’ve been away
before, like you said. Why are you
getting so nervous about it now?
The answer comes in a BABY’S CRY from off-screen. The door of Kira’s modest and austere room creaks open, and OPAKA enters, carrying Raiq’s newborn daughter ANIQ. The baby’s wails are unmistakeable to any mother - she’s hungry.
Sorry to interrupt. Is Raiq -
Ah, there you are. The little
one’s hungry, I’m afraid.
Very well. I will take the child.
Opaka hands the baby over, and Raiq takes her. She quickly pulls aside her tunic and holds the baby to her breast (we don’t need to see).
The entire process is perfunctory and stilted, a biological necessity with no emotion involved. Kira and Opaka share a look of muted sadness at this.
Sleeping. He was up all night
with little Aniq there.
Kira silently asks - leave me alone with her? Opaka gets the message and withdraws.
Raiq rearranges the baby. Kira approaches, gently strokes the baby’s little grey head as she enjoys lunch.
You’ll be okay, you know. It’s
daunting at first, I get that. But
you’ve got Vexh, he’s crazy about
his “young one”. Opaka’s here too,
she raised two children of her own
and cared for dozens more. And
a whole monastery full of nurses.
Raiq looks at Kira, fear peeking through the stony facade.
But not you, Nerys. You have been
ever by my side, yet now you leave
at my time of greatest confusion?
It’s only for six months.
Six months spent in the company
of your people’s greatest enemy.
I would come with you, so I may
cast the shield and keep you safe.
That’s sweet, Raiq. But you have
to think of your baby. She needs
stability. Besides... you might
have to get used to it eventually.
I won’t be around forever.
Raiq looks alarmed... Kira soothes her back down.
I just mean Bajorans don’t live as
long as Ascendants, remember?
You have many cycles yet to come.
Damn right I do. I don’t plan on
dying for a long, long time.
Off Kira’s warmly smiling face...
3 INT. VANADWAN MONASTERY - KIRA’S ROOM - NIGHT
The same room, late at night. The door creaks open again, and Opaka peeks in with VEXH the male Ascendant at her side. An on-screen caption reads...
TWELVE MONTHS LATER
They see Raiq sat alone on the bed, staring out of the window at the dark night beyond. They speak low, quiet...
She still hasn’t said anything?
No. But then... this is our way.
We Ascendants grieve in silence.
END OF TEASER
4 EXT. DEEP SPACE NINE
Focusing on a Cardassian Galor-class ship, which is docked at an upper pylon.
5 INT. DS9 - CAPTAIN’S OFFICE
A young female Cardassian soldier, SLAINE, stands almost painfully at attention, with the door to Ops at her back.
Zivan Slaine, dalin first class of
the Cardassian Guard, reporting
for duty, sir.
Captain RO smiles at the young woman’s eagerness to please.
Welcome aboard, dalin Slaine. You
can relax now, you’ve made a good
enough first impression.
Slaine isn’t sure if that’s a joke or not...
Aye, sir. Thank you... sir?
Ro comes around the desk, removing the separation between them, and gestures towards the office lounge area.
I mean it, dalin. You’ll find I
run a comparatively easy-going
station. Come and sit with me.
A little confused by this unfamiliar command style, Slaine does as she is told and perches opposite Ro’s own soft seat. The Cardassian woman is young and nervous, only in her 20s and desperate to get it right. Ro is sympathetic.
First major assignment?
Yes, sir. First time leaving the
Cardassian Union at all, in fact.
And it’s to a Bajoran station.
Yes, sir. But I consider it a great
honour to be selected for this
important position. Sir.
It’s clear that Slaine is aware of the awkwardness of the situation - a Cardassian officer being assigned back to the former seat of Cardassian power over the Bajorans. But Ro has no plans to make it any worse on her.
Then the office door opens and CENN strides in, casually launching straight into it...
Captain, Vedek Kira and -
Slaine shoots to her feet at the Bajoran Militia officer’s entrance, back at attention again. He stops in surprise...
Oh, I’m sorry, I didn’t realise -
That’s alright, Major. This is
dalin Slaine, our new Cardassian
exchange officer and soon-to-be
strategic operations officer. Dalin
Slaine - Major Cenn, Bajoran
liaison and my first officer.
Cenn steps forward, smothering his own instinctive reaction to a Cardassian soldier in uniform. It’s awkward all round, but they are all trying to make the best of it.
Good to meet you, dalin Slaine.
You were saying, Desca?
Kira and her... “guest”... wanted
to pay respects to the station’s
commander before leaving.
Ro sighs and gets to her feet. Not looking forward to it.
Alright, I’ll handle it. Thanks,
Major. You might as well start
showing the dalin what to do.
Ro heads out into Ops. A pause as Cenn and Slaine look to each other - another moment of awkwardness for them both - then they follow her out and get to work.
6 INT. DS9 - UPPER PYLON DOCKING AREA
Cardassian soldiers carry supplies into the airlock, back onto their ship. KIRA is there in her travelling clothes, smiling wide as RO strides up.
Good to see you, Nerys. Where’s
Never far, Captain. Never far.
Kira and Ro both turn to see not Raiq but YEVIR, the other Bajoran vedek, squeezing down the short airlock past the Cardassian soldiers towards them both. He is also wearing simple travelling clothes, not his religious regalia.
After a nod of acknowledgment to Ro, he turns to Kira.
Nerys, I’ve spoken to the glinn.
All our belongings are safely
stowed and the ship is ready
to leave as soon as we are.
Thanks, Linjarin. I’ll see you
Subtext: leave me alone with Ro. Yevir nods politely to Ro again then heads back inside. Once he’s out of earshot...
I can’t believe you’re spending
months on Cardassia with him.
Wasn’t so long ago you despised
each other. Now you’re calling
each other by your given names?
We’ve all changed, Laren. Even
Yevir. Besides, working with the
Oralian Way was what brought us
closer to the Cardassians before.
Before the plague hit, they shut
their borders, and everyone had
to run for their lives, you mean.
Well, yeah. And now, they’re open
again. It’ll be slow work, I don’t
doubt that for a second. But faith
is what got us there last time. It
will be our way in this time too.
Better you than me.
Didn’t you just get a Cardassian
exchange officer yourself?
Yeah, but she’s on my territory.
You’ll be on theirs.
You sound just like Raiq.
By now, the Cardassian soldiers have finished carrying their supplies. With a last friendly half-hug, Kira heads after the last of them, onto the Cardassian ship. Ro steps back, lets the airlock roll closed, and watches her go.
7 INT. DS9 - OPS
At the central Ops table, CENN is showing SLAINE what to do, while the business of Ops goes on around them. A slight tension remains between them, eggshells, but nothing overt.
So on a large scale, the strategic
operations officer’s job is to know
exactly where every ship in the
entire Bajoran sector is, and
what they’re doing, at all times.
On a smaller scale, your job is to
run the docking boards, basically.
Allocating resources, assigning
berths, getting clearance.
Don’t worry. I know it can seem
overwhelming at first, but it’ll be
second nature in a few weeks.
Ghedri to DS-Nine Control. We are
ready to depart.
Acknowledged, Ghedri. Stand by.
Cenn smiles to Slaine - now watch. He works a control...
First thing is to check the sensor
display, make sure we don’t have
any other ships in the vicinity.
This screen here shows you -
Major, I am familiar with reading
Cardassian sensor readouts...
Cenn pauses - naturally she is, she’s a Cardassian.
Of course, dalin, my apologies.
Most of our new officers come
here from the Federation, so...
I understand. So we check the
sensors, and if all is clear...?
Transmit their flight plan out of
He points to one panel - Slaine works it.
Wait for them to acknowledge...
He points to another display - it soon BEEPS affirmatively.
Then release the docking clamps,
and they’re away. But keep track
until they’re out of range.
To ensure they behave themselves?
Anything can happen. You have to
stay alert. On screen...
Slaine works another control, they look to the SCREEN...
shows the Cardassian warship Ghedri pulling away from the station and out into space.
BACK TO SCENE
Cenn and Slaine both watch it go...
I usually like to wish them “Walk
with the Prophets”. But I imagine
you’ll find your own phrase.
Keeping her eyes on the screen, Slaine almost whispers...
Cenn looks at her, curious what that means...
An ordinary Cardassian male, in his 40s, stands with a blank expression, staring into the middle distance. This is MORAD, a freighter captain who is just waiting his turn.
Morad? Is there a Morad here?
Morad looks up at the call, and sees...
9 INT. FREIGHTER HUB - COUNTER
A FOREMAN with a padd looking around the room. A Cardassian male, as ordinary as the first, just a guy doing his job.
Morad shuffles forwards to where the Foreman stands at a counter, in this large warehouse filled with stacks and rows of crates waiting to be picked up. Other Cardassian civilian EXTRAS use anti-gravs to heft the crates around.
Yeah, that’s me.
With a sigh, Morad digs out his ID pass, hands it over...
INSERT - ID PASS
Held in the Foreman’s hand - a headshot with his full name DENISON MORAD, and various security licenses.
BACK TO SCENE
The Foreman hands it back, makes a note on his padd, and beckons Morad to follow him into the warehouse depths.
10 INT. FREIGHTER HUB - WAREHOUSE ROWS
The Foreman points out some boxes indistinguishable from the rest, and hands over his padd to Morad.
Everything in these three bays is
yours. Just sign there.
What’s in them?
Are you sure?
Look, all I know is it’s got to be
delivered to the Science Academy.
That’s all you need to know too.
I’m not taking any cargo on board
my ship if I don’t know what it
is. That’s why I’ve got all those
security verifications you just
checked. You must have a manifest
for all this stuff or you wouldn’t
have taken custody of it either.
I’m just asking to see it so I
know what I’m getting into.
The Foreman considers his options - in fact he does know what’s in the boxes, but he was hoping to get away with pretending he didn’t. Grudgingly he snatches the padd off Morad, unlocks a new page and hands it back. Morad reads...
Technical components. That wasn’t
so hard, was it? Delivering to the
new Academy annex in Lakat.
Why is the Science Academy using
a basic outfit like this place to
ship its components? No offence.
The Foreman grunts - offence taken. Morad continues...
Unless they’re specifically trying
not to be noticed for some reason.
Just take it and go, will you?
The answer comes to Morad - and he’s not happy about it.
It’s for slipstream, isn’t it? The
damn Science Academy are working
on that fancy propulsion tech the
Federation gave us to get us to
join their damn alliance, aren’t
they? But they don’t want anyone
to know it, so they’re using you.
The Foreman steps close, an angry whisper...
Keep your damn voice down. We’re
not paid to worry about what’s in
those boxes. I’m paid to package
them up, and you’re paid to get
them where they need to be. That’s
all. So stop talking, pick up your
merchandise, and get out. Got it?
The Foreman snatches back his padd, and stalks off back to his counter. He doesn’t need any trouble today.
Left alone, Morad takes one of the anti-gravs and starts loading the boxes onto it with an annoyed harrumph. He has no choice, it’s his job, and he needs to get paid.
But as he guides the fully loaded anti-grav out of the warehouse back towards his ship, the thunderclouds in his eyes are a long way from the blank expression of earlier...
END OF ACT ONE
11 EXT. CARDASSIAN SCIENCE ACADEMY - DAY
A new advanced building on Cardassia Prime, in the usual Cardassian style but updated so as to seem less ominous and intimidating. The complex has room for dozens of lecture halls, laboratories, offices, and a dedicated shuttle port.
12 INT. CARDASSIAN SCIENCE ACADEMY - MAIN LABORATORY
KIRA and YEVIR walk in from off-screen, escorted by one Cardassian SOLDIER in front and another behind. Before they get very far, the soldier in front stops dead, making it clear they go no further. Kira side-whispers to Yevir...
I guess that means we wait here?
Apparently so. Look at this place.
They do, and see...
...a cavernous LABORATORY for building and testing starship parts, with half-constructed machines everywhere and the SOUND of tools and industrial replicators being run. More Cardassian EXTRAS work - scientists and engineers.
I’m surprised they’re letting us
see this. You’d think the slip-
stream factory’d be top secret.
I was told we were specifically
requested. By name.
They share another look, intrigued by the mystery. But then HEELS on the concrete floor, and a voice approaching...
Vedek Yevir, Vedek Kira...
They turn, and Yevir GASPS, quietly amazed and thrilled...
Nyra? Nyra Maleren?
The younger Cardassian woman - NYRA, last seen a troubled teenager in 9x06 “Miracles”, now a professional scientist with long dark hair flowing freely - runs the last few steps and throws herself into Yevir’s arms with glee.
Hello again, Vedek.
By the Prophets, is it really you?
The hug tightly for a while, leaving Kira bemused...
Are you going to introduce me?
My apologies, Vedek. I am Doctor
Nyra Maleren of the Cardassian
And you know Yevir?
We met a few years ago.
At the Andak reclamation project.
That was you?
The confused teenage girl with a
bomb? Yes, that was me. Luckily
Yevir was there with the gentle
hand and calm voice I needed.
And now you followed your mother
into the sciences, just like you
always planned. Is all this yours?
I’m only a junior researcher, for
now. But when this project became
available, something to help pull
Cardassia out of the ruins - well,
how could I turn down the chance?
Nyra looks to the two Cardassian soldiers standing guard.
You can go now, thank you. I’ll
vouch for them.
The soldiers nod and move off, and Nyra begins to lead Kira and Yevir deeper into the laboratory.
Now, let me show you both around.
It’s not often we get honoured
guests from the Federation...
They move off - Nyra chattering with science talk, Yevir just amazed and happy to see her again...
...but Kira somewhat ambivalent about the whole thing.
So... what do you think of her?
13 INT. DS9 - CAPTAIN’S OFFICE
Inside the office, looking out through the windows onto Ops, where dalin Slaine works the central Ops table under the guidance of Lt CANDLEWOOD. Ro and Cenn watch...
She’s picking the job up easily
enough. Understandable given she
already knows the technology.
Yes, but what do you think of her?
Cenn steps away to gather his thoughts. Ro joins him...
I’ve barely had time to speak to
her yet. But she seems dedicated.
Obviously. I did have one question
If she’s in control of docking...
what do I do with my day?
Ro LAUGHS - that’s not what she was expecting him to say.
I would think you’ve got enough to
keep you busy, Desca. Representing
the crew to the captain, collating
reports from a dozen department
heads, managing liaison issues so
I don’t end up punching anyone...
But, we have a more multi-cultural
crew now than we’ve had in years.
Exchange officers from two major
allied empires. Human, Cardassian,
Ferengi, Bajoran... someone needs
to make sure it all runs smoothly.
Knew I should have kept my
14 INT. DS9 - OPS
Cenn trots down the stairs from the office towards the central Ops table. He nods to Slaine and Candlewood...
Thank you, Mister Candlewood. You
can take your station again now.
Aww. And I was just starting to
Let me know if you need anything,
I’m only just up there.
Candlewood heads up to the science station. Slaine blushes, unused to such a casual atmosphere, but quite enjoying it.
So, dalin Slaine - tell me a bit
She snaps back to attention, assuming this is an order. She attempts to answer while keeping an eye on the Ops table.
I thought Cardassian females tend
to gravitate more towards science
than the military. At least, that
always used to be the case.
In fact, my mother was a botanist
at a Federation soil reclamation
project on Cardassia.
Must have been difficult for you.
Why do you say that?
Growing up around lots of aliens.
Cardassian culture doesn’t exactly
embrace such things, as a rule. So
I’d just imagine it was confusing.
Cenn is trying to be friendly and sympathetic, but he is coming from a place of stereotypes, and Slaine feels the need to firmly but respectfully set him straight.
Actually it gave me a rather more
egalitarian perspective than most
Cardassians. I think you’ll find
that many things that used to be
the case aren’t anymore, Major.
Cenn takes that on board, quietly chastened.
As for aliens, I grew accustomed
to dealing with humans, Vulcans
and Bolians, yes...
(looks at him)
...but I’ve only ever met one
Bajoran before coming here.
Cenn realises that Slaine is confessing her own ingrained prejudices, forgiving him for his. He smiles, grateful.
His name was Vedek Yevir Linjarin,
and he saved my best friend from
blowing up the entire base on the
whim of some people who thought
they knew what Cardassia was meant
to be. We’d never been taught what
my people had done to yours, you
see. Yevir didn’t go out of his way
to tell us, either. I thought that
was nice of him at first... then I
realised it was misguided. We
needed to know.
Cenn is quietly stunned at all this.
What happened to your friend?
Nyra? She lived, and thrived. She
has followed her mother into the
sciences, as you said. She wanted
to make her world a better place.
But not you?
No. I went into the military...
...for the same purpose.
As Slaine works the Ops table, Cenn is the one who has been taught a lesson...
15 INT. CARDASSIAN SCIENCE ACADEMY - SECURITY ROOM
Nyra leads Kira and Yevir into a room of control panels and screens, where several Cardassians SOLDIERS watch live VIDEO FEEDS from inside and outside of the Academy.
And this is the security centre...
INSERT - SCREEN 1
The main laboratory room they passed through earlier...
INSERT - SCREEN 2
The security barrier at the front door, with several more armed soldiers standing sentry. Over the above...
...where as you can see, no-one
gets anywhere near this place
without passing through multiple
layers of security and checking.
BACK TO SCENE
Kira smiles tightly, trying not to be reminded...
While Nyra is checking in with the soldiers and cannot see them, Yevir places a comforting hand on Kira’s arm. She looks up at him, knows that he knows what she’s thinking.
BEEP BEEP BEEP - Kira flinches.
Shuttle approaching. New shipment
of components. Security codes all
check out. Nothing to worry about.
Kira nods and smiles - but she is on red alert underneath.
INSERT - SCREEN 3
Live video refocusing and zooming to find a small freighter ship growing closer...
16 EXT. CARDASSIAN SCIENCE ACADEMY - DAY
...to the actual ship flying over Lakat city.
17 INT. MORAD’S FREIGHTER - COCKPIT
Flight deck of a small Cardassian vessel. MORAD sits in the pilot seat, the only crew on board, still glowering. He hates having to make this delivery, but he has no choice.
Or does he? Suddenly a new idea occurs. He quickly works the controls, a dark smile growing...
18 INT. CARDASSIAN SCIENCE ACADEMY - SECURITY ROOM
BEEP BEEP BEEP again. Kira tenses...
Worried, Nyra rushes to the controls...
The shuttle’s not following its
prescribed flight plan towards the
docking platform. It’s heading
right for the central laboratory.
Kira presses forwards, pushes Cardassian SOLDIER 1 out of the way, works the controls for herself.
INSERT - SCREEN 3
The security cameras zoom in on the freighter - and we can see its canopy BURST open and its pilot EJECT to safety.
BACK TO SCENE
As Kira realises what’s about to happen...
It’s an attack! Everybody out!
19 EXT. CARDASSIAN SCIENCE ACADEMY - DAY
The freighter ship PLUMMETS uncontrolled straight towards the main body of the science academy building...
...and EXPLODES on impact, engines rupturing in flames.
END OF ACT TWO
20 INT. CARDASSIAN SCIENCE ACADEMY - SECURITY ROOM
FLAMES, SPARKS and SMOKE. A fallen sheet of metal is pushed aside, letting Kira struggle to her feet. Her face shows bruises and scorch marks, her clothes are singed, and she coughs from the smoke. She looks around, eyes wincing...
...at the blasted control room, where computer panels have ruptured and at least one Cardassian soldier is dead.
Nyra! Linjarin! Is anyone there?
We’re here, Nerys...
She homes in on the voice, YANKS a toppled table out of the way, and finds Yevir and Nyra huddled behind it. Yevir is cradling Nyra, protecting her as if she were his daughter. Kira helps them to their feet, looks around again...
...and sees the Cardassian soldiers pulling themselves out of the debris. Kira instinctively takes charge.
Yevir, you and Nyra get out there
and look for survivors.
You and you - you’re with me.
What are you doing, Nerys?
The pilot of that shuttle ejected
before the crash. He’s still out
there, and I’m going to find him.
The venom in this is not lost on Yevir. But before he can do anything to stop her, she leads the soldiers out...
21 EXT. CARDASSIAN SCIENCE ACADEMY - DAY
Kira emerges onto the street, the two soldiers with her. They pass the security station, whose former guardians are even now running inside to help. She is single-minded, ignoring the burning building behind her, glaring at...
...the SKY over the city, and the ENGINE TRAIL of the shuttle leading towards them. But Kira looks closer...
...and sees that there is a smaller trail leading off the first. That is where the pilot ejected, apparently wearing some kind of personal jetpack that leaves its own trail.
She heads off, determined. The Cardassians follow her...
22 EXT. LAKAT CITY STREETS - DAY
Morad comes to land, his jetpack sputtering out as it drops him to the ground. Morad looks back the way he came...
...at the burning Academy, explosions still going off...
...and he grins. That was a good day’s work.
SIRENS as the city’s emergency services begin to react...
...and Morad decides he’d better get out of there. He rips off the jetpack, throws it down an alley, and RUNS.
As another EXPLOSION sounds off-screen, INTERCUT WITH:
23 INT. CARDASSIAN SCIENCE ACADEMY - MAIN LABORATORY
Yevir THROWN BACK by the force of it, shrapnel and flames landing around him on the scorched and pitted floor of the laboratory. Nyra calls out...
Vedek! Please be careful!
Yevir reclaims his dignity, gets to his feet, brushes off.
Not to worry, Nyra. I was Militia
before I joined the priesthood. I
faced situations like this before.
Now let’s find those survivors.
He forges on to look for the Cardassian scientists who were working here, hoping to save as many as he can. Nyra watches him go, impressed and proud. She looks around...
...at the laboratory, machines destroyed, ceiling collapsed in, Cardassian soldiers quickly picking through the burning ruins to find and rescue her whimpering colleagues.
Nyra is heartbroken. All her work is now in flames.
Then she resolves herself, and follows Yevir’s example.
24 EXT. LAKAT CITY STREETS - DAY
Kira chasing down the street, sniffing out her prey by sheer instinct, sirens still wailing in the background...
...she finds the alley, sees the jetpack Morad left there, growls in anger. She pauses to look around, figure out the most likely course he took, and takes off running again.
The Cardassian soldiers come running behind her...
feeling the authorities on his tail... he realises now that his fun might actually come with consequences, so he puts on an extra push of energy... but he is just an ordinary freighter pilot, and not a highly trained soldier...
26 EXT. LAKAT CITY STREETS - DAY
...and as he passes another alley, looking back over his shoulder the other way...
Kira LAUNCHES out of the alley and TACKLES Morad to the ground. They tussle on the ground...
Kira in an absolute rage, PUNCHING him over and over...
Morad fighting her off as best he can, confused at what the hell a Bajoran is even doing here...
One last PUNCH from Kira knocks the fight out of Morad. She DRAGS him to his feet, THROWS him against the wall, TWISTS his arm behind his back, furiously HISSES in his ear...
Murderer. Cardassian murderer.
The sounds of BOOTS and weapons charging up, as the other Cardassian soldiers finally catch up to Kira...
...and she realises that right now she looks like the crazy one, with Cardassian soldiers pointing weapons her way...
...she lets go and steps back, hands in the air. Morad slumps to the ground, half-conscious...
...and the soldiers come to grab Morad, SOLDIER 1 even nodding his thanks to Kira for her actions.
As they lead Morad off between them, Kira tries to get herself under control. She is a whole mess of emotions - rage, guilt, fear, and confusion about her own reactions.
27 INT. DS9 - OPS
An ALERT on the main OPS table. Dalin Slaine checks it, is curious so she reads further...
Her hand goes to her mouth in tearful horror...
She looks around the room at the other Ops crew, who are going about their own business. She doesn’t really know these people, she can’t possibly share this with them.
So she turns back to her station, gets on with her job, fighting to concentrate even as tears threaten...
28 INT. DS9 - SECURITY OFFICE
CENN enters the office, finding Inspector RWOGO standing and reading criminal activity reports from a wall screen. She turns at his arrival, and smiles toothily...
Major Cenn! To what do I owe the
pleasure of your company?
Hi, Inspector. I’m just checking
in, seeing how you’re doing.
Checking in? Or checking up on?
I don’t follow...
Rwogo chuckles to herself, heads back to her desk, sits.
Captain Ro sent you here to keep
an eye on me, didn’t she?
Not at all. She asked me to make
sure that both the new exchange
officers are settling in.
Rwogo nods sarcastically - Sure, Jan.
Well, you can tell Captain Ro that
her new security chief is hard at
work keeping the station safe for
all. And that she’ll continue to do
the job the best way she knows
how, until the captain figures out
she can actually trust me with it.
Cenn sighs inwardly - this feud between Ro and Rwogo is going to make life difficult on the station.
Then the door opens again, and SLAINE enters, hesitant and nervous, on the verge of tears. Cenn turns, surprised...
Dalin Slaine? Are you okay?
I’m sorry, I didn’t know who else
to ask, and the computer said
you were in here...
Slaine looks past Cenn to Rwogo - they have not yet been introduced. Rwogo gets up and comes to greet the younger woman garrulously if sensitively.
Hello, you must be Slaine, our new
strategic operations officer. I’m
Inspector Rwogo, security chief.
Come on in, my dear, take a
seat, and tell us what’s wrong.
Slaine is grateful for Rwogo’s friendly, motherly manner. She lets herself be led to one of the guest seats, Cenn sits opposite her, while Rwogo heads to the replicator.
There was a news report from back
home, Cardassia. It said there’s
been an explosion... at the new
Science Academy annex in Lakat.
Did you know somebody there?
My friend Nyra. She’s one of the
Cenn sighs. Rwogo arrives with a mug, hands it to Slaine...
Here you go. Red leaf tea.
Slaine smiles with gratitude. Rwogo returns to her desk...
Now then... I read the same news
report hours ago, and it made
no mention of the scale of the
explosion, what caused it, or of
who might have been hurt by it.
Of course not. Cardassians never
want to admit to any weakness.
A frown from Slaine and a glare from Rwogo...
My point is, we should not jump
to any conclusions.
It’s not just Nyra. Yevir was
Vedek Yevir? How do you know?
Because Nyra told me she was going
to invite him. She said it in her last
message - the one I didn’t respond
to before I left, because I was too
eager to get here. And now they’re
both probably dead... and I never
said goodbye to them.
Wait - I thought Yevir travelled
back to Cardassia on the same
ship that brought you, the Ghedri.
You didn’t cross paths?
Slaine glances at Cenn, a bit embarrassed...
My first day in a new assignment.
I could hardly ask for a favour. I
just wish I knew what’s going on.
But my superiors in the Cardassian
Guard will tell me nothing, I know
that. It’s not even worth asking.
Will you help me, please? Help
me to find out if they’re safe?
Cenn smiles, glad to be the bigger man (he thinks)...
Of course we’ll help.
And as it happens, young lady,
you’ve come to the right place.
This station boasts four of the
best investigators in the quadrant
working all together. I’m sure that
between us we can find some
information about your friend.
Four of us?
You, me, Lieutenant Douglas, and
The latter of whom I’m now going
to have to go and grovel to, if I
want to make use of her contacts
in the Cardassian Union.
Still! I’m a Ferengi, grovelling
is in our blood. Return to your
post, dalin. We’ll let you know
what we find.
Off Rwogo’s let’s-get-this-over-with grin...
END OF ACT THREE
29 INT. VANADWAN MONASTERY - CORRIDOR
Raiq SCREAMS, incoherent with rage, the Ascendant FLAMES bursting from her hands and scouring the stone walls.
OPAKA rushes down the corridor, avoids the blasts of fire, tries to get close, shouting to be heard over the noise...
Raiq! Stop this at once! What
in the name of the Prophets is
going on? Raiq, stop it!
Raiq turns to Opaka, almost turns her rage on her...
...but gets herself under control before she goes too far. The flames die out, but Raiq is still seething...
I told her! I said she should not
go, and now they have killed her!
Raiq, slow down. What’s going on?
Word. From Cardassia. The world of
your enemies. And as I feared they
have taken Kira from us. Death and
destruction at some great pavilion
of theirs, and it is said that the
Bajorans were there. She is dead.
Opaka takes a deep breath, hoping to heaven it’s not true. She steps close, reaches out to take Raiq’s hands...
...realises that the Ascendant woman’s hands are still red hot and glowing with the sheer force of her anger...
...and takes them anyway. It’s only burned skin after all, and here is a person in pain and in need of comfort.
Raiq, listen to me. We have no
proof of that. I believe Nerys is
safe. I have no doubt I would
know, I would feel it if she were
truly gone. I think you know that
you would feel it too. Do you?
Raiq searches her feelings, as best she can with so much fear and anger in the way... and she shakes her head.
Exactly. We will hear more soon,
and then we will know for certain.
In the meantime... pray with me.
We will seek comfort together.
Raiq nods agreement, and lets Opaka lead her away...
30 INT. DS9 - CAPTAIN’S OFFICE
The door opens and Slaine walks in, apprehensive. Ro is on the near side of the desk, smiling and holding out a data rod. Cenn and Rwogo are on either side of her...
Hardly daring to hope, Slaine takes the data rod...
How do you know?
Between us, Dalin, we have access
to Bajoran, Starfleet, Ferengi and
Cardassian intelligence. A perfect
example of many nations working
together for the good of all.
I’m friendly with Legate Macet.
He gave me a “limited report” on
the incident at the Annex. Nyra,
Yevir and Kira are all fine.
Slaine sighs with relief and gratitude.
Thank you, Captain. I was afraid
that coming to work here might
be too difficult for all of us. I’m
sorry for underestimating you.
That’s not all. You’ll also find
some access codes on that rod
- they’ll let you watch the live
feed from the trial.
Trial? It wasn’t an accident?
Apparently not. A Cardassian pilot
deliberately crashed his freighter
into the Academy building. But he
was caught, and he’ll pay for it.
Honestly, I’m surprised the trial
hasn’t already happened. I guess
they wanted to make sure they
had all the evidence first this time.
Cenn smiles again, still not realising he has said anything wrong. From Slaine’s ambivalent reaction...
31 INT. CARDASSIAN COURT - PREP ROOM
...to Kira, similarly ambivalent. She and Yevir are both back in their vedek’s robes for this special occasion.
Are you sure it shouldn’t be you?
You are the one who caught him.
I’m not the politician you are.
I’d probably just start a whole
new interstellar incident.
Yevir smiles at Kira’s joke... but she’s not smiling.
Besides, I’m too much a reminder
of the past. I’d be a distraction.
I’m hardly the most welcome person
here today either, Nerys. If the new
Oralian Cleric hadn’t insisted on it,
the Chief Archon would not have
me anywhere near that room.
A door opens with an ominous CLUNK. Kira offers Yevir a nod of good luck, then he turns and strides through the door.
Kira is left standing alone, looking around at the familiar Cardassian architecture. She hugs herself in comfort, then takes a deep breath and deliberately uncoils.
32 INT. CARDASSIAN COURT ROOM
As seen in 2x25 “Tribunal”, with warmer lighting to better represent the newer, softer Cardassia. It doesn’t convince.
Yevir heads to the spectator seats, nods hello to SOLDIER 1 (who helped Kira earlier) who is just entering from the other end. As they both sit, Yevir looks around and sees...
Archon MAKBAR, the same woman as in 2x25, in the judge’s high seat, gavel in hand. She BANGS it on her desk...
The defendant may enter.
Another door opens, and MORAD is led in, hands shackled behind his back. The Cardassian civilians RAP KNUCKLES on the railing in front of them - Yevir watches with interest.
The guards lead Morad up to the offender’s box, while his CONSERVATOR and NESTOR take places at the defence table. Makbar BANGS her gavel again to bring the room to order.
The defendant, Denison Morad, is
accused of causing the deaths of
eleven civilians and six members
of the military by using his own
vehicle to deliberately attack the
Cardassian Science Academy
Annex in Lakat. The sentence is...
...yet to be determined. The trial
will now begin.
With one last BANG of the gavel, we CUT TO:
33 INT. DS9 - SECURITY OFFICE
SLAINE stands watching the trial on a wall SCREEN. Rwogo continues to work at her own desk, providing moral support.
The trial has moved on a little since the last scene, and the CONSERVATOR (defence lawyer) is questioning his client, whom he has coached to appear demure and apologetic...
Mister Morad, it was your vehicle
that crashed into the Science
Academy, and that you escaped only
moments before that crash. These
facts are confirmed by our remote
surveillance. Do you accept this?
I do, Conservator.
You also hold multiple security
licenses, and have been up till
now an exemplary citizen with no
criminal record. Please explain
this... discrepancy to the court.
I’m not sure I have an explanation
that will satisfy the court. It was
negligence, not malice, that led
to these events, and I deeply
regret the deaths they caused.
The Conservator turns to Makbar as if this proves his case. The view on Slaine’s screen moves with him, showing Makbar silently absorbing it all. Slaine turns proudly to Rwogo...
That’s Makbar, the chief Archon.
Best arbiter in the entire Union.
A former security chief had some
dealings with her. But that was
years ago. She must have a talent
for keeping up with the times.
Meanwhile in the BACKGROUND, the Conservator speaks...
CONSERVATOR (o.s., b.g.)
I am certain, Madam Archon, that
such a heartfelt declaration of
remorse will be of great comfort
to the families of those lost.
Comforted to watch justice be done, Slaine turns back to the SCREEN, where we pick up with Makbar’s deadpan reply...
A great comfort, Conservator.
34 INT. CARDASSIAN COURT ROOM (INTERCUT)
Makbar gestures to SOLDIER 1, sitting next to Yevir and terrified of becoming the centre of attention...
Yet according to Glinn Rettak, it
was Vedek Kira’s opinion that the
defendant’s miraculous last-minute
escape from the vehicle indicated
his intent to attack the facility.
I ask you, Madam Archon, does that
seem likely? Indeed, it cannot be
disproven that this was all simply
a tragic accident, the result of a
catastrophic system failure aboard
the defendant’s ship, and that his
escape was at the worst cowardly.
On YEVIR as he considers this possibility, relieved by it. Makbar on the other hand is not so easily impressed...
It cannot be proven either.
The glinn’s report also claimed he
found the defendant defending
himself from Vedek Kira, who had
not, to his knowledge, confirmed
the man she was attacking was
the pilot of the vehicle in question.
35 INT. CARDASSIAN COURT - PREP ROOM (INTERCUT)
Kira watches on another SCREEN from outside the court...
I respectfully submit that Vedek
Kira’s judgement in this matter
cannot be considered impartial.
Kira damns herself for her foolishness...
36 INT. DS9 - CAPTAIN’S OFFICE (INTERCUT)
Ro and Cenn watch on yet another SCREEN, neither happily. As the trial continues underneath, Cenn grinds his teeth...
They’re trying to turn this all
into Kira’s fault. Typical damned
Cardassians. Painting themselves
as victims of Bajoran fanatics.
He’s the defence lawyer, I guess
you can’t really blame him.
Underneath the above, in b.g., they are tying up...
MAKBAR (comm, b.g.)
Thank you, Conservator. You have
served the court admirably - you
may now step down. It is time to
hear from the defendant himself.
37 INT. CARDASSIAN COURT ROOM (INTERCUT)
Attention turns to the shackled MORAD in the defendant’s stand, maintaining his repentant image...
The Conservator made a sterling
case on your behalf, Mister Morad.
I hope you are suitably thankful.
However it seems to me that claims
of cowardice and negligence, while
ferrying vital components to a
government-led facility critical
to Cardassia’s future, no less,
are out of character for a man
of your reliable record.
(beat, then lightly)
Tell me... what are your feelings
on Cardassia’s recent membership
in the Khitomer Accords?
38 INT. DS9 - SECURITY OFFICE (INTERCUT)
Slaine smiles, thrilled at this development...
A-ha, now she’s got him.
Rwogo has got up from her desk, now watching over Slaine’s shoulder, intrigued to observe this alien justice system...
39 INT. CARDASSIAN COURT ROOM (INTERCUT)
On Morad, squirming under Makbar’s steady gaze...
I’m afraid I don’t understand the
relevance, Madam Archon.
Makbar smiles a cold and threatening smile...
Indulge the court.
I have no feelings on the matter
On such a historic development in
your nation’s relationships with
its interstellar neighbours? I
find that difficult to believe.
I was against it, Madam Archon.
The Conservator is instantly on his feet, worried that his client is going off the game-plan...
If I might be permitted to speak
with my client, Madam Archon -
That will not be necessary,
As the Conservator collapses into his seat, horrified and defeated, Makbar turns back to Morad, presses him...
Do go on, Mister Morad. You were
against the Khitomer Accords?
I am against them. Cardassia does
not need the Federation or the
Klingons or the Ferengi. But it
seems that we have lost our way.
Nobody believes in a strong and
independent Cardassia anymore.
So you were forced to act...
Yes! Because no-one else would.
And the fact that the Science
Academy Annex employed fellow
citizens honestly working for
the betterment of Cardassia...
They were working for the
diminishment of Cardassia.
40 INT. DS9 - SECURITY OFFICE (INTERCUT)
Slaine gapes at Morad’s sneering face on the screen, no longer proud but appalled at what she is hearing...
And as far as I’m concerned...
they deserve whatever they got.
END OF ACT FOUR
41 INT. DS9 - OPS
Slaine stands at her post, trying to concentrate on the docking controls but her mind really elsewhere.
Slaine jumps at the voice on her shoulder, and turns to see Candlewood peering at her sympathetically...
...are you okay?
I am fully capable of performing
my duties, Lieutenant.
Well, first of all, call me John.
And second, I didn’t ask about
your duties. I asked about you.
Slaine hesitates - this friendliness is all so new to her.
What Morad said, about deserving
it. It’s exactly the kind of thing
Nyra would have said, once. I
know she would never say it now,
but... now she’s the target of it.
I believe that’s what we humans
call “karma”. Speaking of which,
isn’t it time for the sentencing?
Do you think Captain Ro and Major
Cenn would let me watch it here?
Candlewood grins and heads back to his science station.
I can do you better than that. Ops
to Ro and Cenn - I’m about to put
the Morad sentencing on. Get out
here if you don’t wanna miss it.
Slaine is astonished at such seeming disrespect in front of superiors, but no-one else seems bothered by it. In fact, as Candlewood works his panels, the office door opens and Ro and Cenn stroll out, heading down to the Ops table.
How are you holding up, dalin?
Slaine looks to Candlewood - he nods “go on, it’s okay”.
I am... sad, Captain. At so much
distrust and animosity between
Cardassia and the Federation, even
now we are allies. Nyra and Yevir,
Vedek Kira... they almost died
because my people and yours still
cannot find their way together.
The annex was for the slipstream
project, wasn’t it? That’s what
your friend Nyra was working on.
And that’s why Morad attacked it.
And of course it was all my idea,
which means it’s all my fault.
It’s nobody’s fault but Morad’s.
It’ll just take time, that’s all.
Time... yes. It’s been clear from
your behaviour today, Major, how
uncomfortable it is for a Bajoran
to work with a Cardassian, still.
My... behaviour? I don’t know -
She’s talking about you acting
like an ass about Cardassians all
day long. Which you have been.
Taken aback by the accusation, Cenn looks up to Candlewood, who nods as if to say “Yep, that’s you.” Cenn starts going over what he’s said and done today, appalled. But before he can say anything, Candlewood reacts to an alert...
Okay, they’re ready. On screen...
They all turn to watch the main VIEWSCREEN, which shows MORAD being led back into the court, still in shackles.
Don’t worry. He’ll get what he
Then the BANG of the gavel...
42 INT. CARDASSIAN COURT ROOM (INTERCUT)
Morad stands in the defendant’s dock, while Makbar prepares to pass sentence...
This court has heard the testimony
of the witness, the defence of the
Conservator, and the confession of
the accused. And while it is clear
the defendant is guilty of causing
the deaths of those at the Science
Academy, I believe he has shown
genuine remorse for his error.
43 INT. DS9 - OPS (INTERCUT)
Hearing this, Slaine frowns in confusion. Ro is amazed...
What?! No he hasn’t.
44 INT. DS9 - SECURITY OFFICE (INTERCUT)
On the screen, Morad tries to conceal his surprise at this development. Rwogo watches also in disbelief...
So this is the world-famous Chief
45 INT. CARDASSIAN COURT ROOM (INTERCUT)
Punishment is only right for the
tragic loss of life Mister Morad’s
actions have caused. The families
and colleagues of the dead deserve
no less. But it is no longer the
Cardassian way to punish thoughts
and opinions contrary to the
policies of the government.
46 INT. DS9 - OPS (INTERCUT)
On the main viewscreen...
Therefore, in light of our joining
in a peaceful alliance of nations,
the sentence is one hundred days,
to be spent in hard labour at the
Hutet facility on Cardassia Four.
Everyone’s reactions as Makbar continues in background...
This will serve as appropriate
penalty for Mister Morad’s crimes,
while demonstrating that Cardassia
is an enlightened society that
treats its offenders with dignity
and the chance for redemption.
With a BANG of the gavel, court is adjourned. We settle upon Slaine, who is confused and disturbed by this...
It doesn’t make sense...
It’s better than nothing.
Leaving her with a comforting smile, Ro moves off, while Candlewood mutes the video feed. Slaine is still gathering her thoughts when she looks up and notices that CENN did not leave with Ro. He hovers, awkward and unsure...
Dalin... I need to apologise.
You said you’d only ever met one
Bajoran before me. I can’t have
been a very good example for you.
Slaine stays silent, unable to accuse her superior officer.
To be honest, you’re the first
Cardassian I’ve ever tried to get
to know too. I used to prefer to
avoid aliens altogether. Didn’t
even want to work here on DS-
Nine because it reminded me
too much of... well, you know.
Yes, I do know. I had to learn for
myself, but I did it. So I under-
stand, and I don’t blame you.
Thank you. For what it’s worth, I
think you’re very brave to come
here. There can’t be many Bajorans
who wouldn’t react like I did...
Perhaps ones my age?
Hope in the next generation. Cenn nods, chagrined.
Perhaps. The thing is, sometimes
I almost wish I still hated you. It
feels like a betrayal of my wife and
child that I don’t. But I’ve learned
too much since then. So maybe this -
The screen, where the court clerks are clearing the room...
- is actually a good sign. A sign
that we can find our way together.
It will, as you say... take time.
They stand together, watching the screen companionably...
47 EXT. CARDASSIAN SCIENCE ACADEMY - DAY
The flames have been put out, but the building is still a wreck, soldiers and scientists picking through the rubble.
Standing across the street are KIRA, YEVIR and NYRA. They all observe the ruins with sad resignation.
I’m so sorry, Nyra.
We’ll rebuild. We’ve gotten good
Still... a hundred days, for this
much damage. Cardassian justice
used to be a lot more brutal.
I like to think we’re getting better
at that, too.
We’ll get there, all of us.
I sometimes wonder.
That Conservator was right - I
made everything worse with the way
I reacted. Ro was right too. Sure,
I’ve dealt with Cardassians since
the end of the war, but always on
my turf. You’ve both worked here,
rebuilt here... but I’m still in those
caves, running and fighting.
No-one could blame you, Vedek.
I believe in the philosophy of the
Oralian Way - that everything is
connected, Cardassian to Bajoran
to Ascendant to Eav’oq. All of it.
My own feelings are a little more
complicated. But I want this to
work - really. I’ve seen that the
Cardassian soul has goodness in
it, if it’s allowed to blossom.
Like an Edosian orchid.
Or a lotus flower.
Yevir and Nyra smile warmly together. Then Yevir rallies...
Well! Shall we get back to work?
Kira and Nyra nod their agreement, and all three move off.
48 EXT. VANADWAN MONASTERY - DAY
The monastery atop the Bajoran mountain...
49 INT. VANADWAN MONASTERY - KIRA’S ROOM - DAY
The door creaks open, and OPAKA pokes her head in...
...finding RAIQ sitting on the bed, staring out of the window blankly, back to us. Opaka steps in quietly...
Raiq... Will you join us for dinner?
Or perhaps for prayers?
No response. Opaka steps closer.
There is no need to grieve, Raiq,
silently or otherwise. Nerys is
safe, as I knew she would be.
But she is not here.
No... she will stay on Cardassia
for six months, as she always
planned. There is nothing to fear
for her there - the criminal was
stopped, and justice was done.
ANGLE now on Raiq, and we see that she is nursing the baby to her breast. She looks down at it, still emotionless...
Yes... Justice was done. We all
get what we deserve.
An on-screen caption says...
THREE MONTHS LATER
Under this, sounds of an ELECTRIFIED FENCE depowering, and a heavy gate CREAKING open...
50 EXT. CARDASSIA FOUR - HUTET LABOUR CAMP
As seen in 2x01 “The Homecoming”, except now a Cardassian prisoner slumps out of the gates, overseen by soldiers.
MORAD looks exhausted, demoralised, beaten down. The gates close behind him, giving him his freedom. He stops, looks back over his shoulder at the labour camp, at the other Cardassians chipping pointlessly at rocks with pickaxes.
Was it really worth it? He ruined his own life and career, destroyed his ship, and for what? Nothing has changed.
He turns back again and slumps away from the camp...
51 INT. MORAD’S APARTMENT
A door KERTHUNKS open, letting weak light into a darkened apartment, size and design much like standard DS9 quarters. Morad slumps in through the door, and it KERTHUNKS closed behind him, returning us to darkness.
Welcome home, Mister Morad.
Morad gasps in fear. After a moment, a LIGHT comes on, and reveals MAKBAR herself, sat comfortably in an armchair.
What do you want?
There’s nothing to fear, Mister
Morad. In fact I’m here with a
great opportunity. A chance for
redemption, just as I promised.
I don’t understand.
It’s really quite simple. You see, I
was thinking about what you said
in my court. I know your concerns
about the future of Cardassia are
genuine. You worry our world has
lost its way. I happen to share
those concerns, so I am offering
you the opportunity to help me.
To help Cardassia find its way.
It’s true way.
Morad’s eyes flare as he recognises the phrase, and begins to grasp what is going on here. Makbar smiles, warmly this time, as she watches the understanding dawn on his face.
And suddenly Morad, downtrodden and hopeless only moments ago, has found new purpose...
END OF SHOW
TNG 19x06 - “HISTORY REPEATING”
Data is alive, but has left with Lal’s body. Choudhury is dead, and Worf blames himself. But Enterprise has a new mission – to help science ship Newton track the Nexus (TNG “Generations”). They have been studying it for years, but now it is nearing Kinshaya space, so their orders are to destroy it – they don’t need a Typhon Pact nation with a time machine. A civilian scientist of Picard’s acquaintance, Kolb, believes he has a way to close the Nexus off without destroying it, but LaForge says his calculations will not work. Newton is sabotaged and almost destroyed, and Enterprise discovers an Orion agent working for the Kinshaya. But the Orion agent did not sabotage the ship – Kolb did. He escapes in a runabout and heads towards the Nexus. LaForge beams Picard onto the runabout, leaving Worf in command, but before Picard can stop his friend, the Nexus reaches out for them both, and they are gone...
VOY 12x06 - “SIX DEGREES”
The EMH is worried about Axum – Seven’s ex was taken from Star-base 185, and the Doctor doesn’t know where he is. On Voyager, Seven’s dreams worsen; she feels Axum screaming. Chakotay advises her to seek Dr Sharak and Cambridge’s help. Cambridge is hurt that Seven is thinking of another man, but promises to help. Sharak is the first Tamarian (TNG “Darmok”) in Starfleet, and his metaphor-based mind lets him translate data bursts from the waveforms that reveal they have rudimentary intelligence. Sharak asks them, who are the Worlds of the First Quadrant? The waveforms send back images of death and destruction – “Dangerous, do not approach.” Starfleet finally approves Janeway’s command of Full Circle, but they demand Seven and Paris be sent back to Earth in return. Janeway assigns Cadet Icheb to keep an eye on Seven at Starfleet Medical, then sets off for the Delta Quadrant with Vesta and Galen...
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