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.
Searching for Orion life signs.
Life signs found.
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.
Typical man. Can’t take no for
You weren’t at the bar.
So you came to find me - out of
the goodness of your lobes.
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.
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.
That looks valuable.
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.
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...
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.
Treir... I don’t want you to do this.
It’s a long time since I’ve given
a damn what any male wants
me to do or not do, Quark.
I don’t understand. What happened?
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
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.
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.
Treir... this is not the way.
It’s my way.
Is it? Or were you just sitting
here waiting for someone to
come and talk you out of it?
You think I won’t do it? I’m
I didn’t say that.
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.
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.
That’s sweet, Quark. I don’t have
Didn’t you say you’re a chameleon?
Whatever happens, you’ll find a
way to make it work, to survive?
There is no surviving this, Quark!
And what if there is? You do this
now, you’d be dead anyway. You’ll
never know if you were right.
That’s your argument? Don’t
kill yourself, wait and see if
someone else does it for you?
This is my way out, Quark. This
is how I escape all of this, and
I am in control of it.
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.
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.
So it’s all about your profit.
Would you believe me if I said
Quark relaxes a little - these tiny displays of emotion are an encouraging sign. She is not completely out of reach.
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.
All of us. We each have our own
ways of handling it, that’s all.
31 INT. DS9 - QUARK’S BAR
Nog, Tenmei and Candlewood doing the Status Quo dance...
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.
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...
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...
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...
Ro’s keeping a brave face, for all
the people who look up to her
to be in charge, in control.
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.
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.
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.
...is how I cope with it?
Because this isn’t coping. It’s
And don’t I have the right to
do that if I want?
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.
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.
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.
END OF SHOW