Reviewer: SLWatson Signed
24 Jun 2009
Chapter 1: Sacrifice
You know, now that I've had a chance to interact with him far more, this story is a real heartbreaker. I mean, it was powerful the first time I read it, but now? It feels like closing the book on such a deserving man's life, even though he holds true to his own inner flame right to the end, without him being given the proper goodbye in a warm, sunlit bed with all his loved ones nearby.
Mind, I wouldn't dream of saying it should be changed; I understand tragedy and that sometimes even the most deserving don't get their just rewards. But this hits so much harder now.
Thank you so much for reading this.
Oddly enough...this is actually the first thing I ever wrote with my AU Dukat. I really wish his ending could've been different. I wish he could've lived longer. And the irony is, his life is even shorter than the canon Dukat's...yet I think his short life meant SO much more than his canon version's ever did. (At least, before he ended up frozen in rock in the Bajoran Fire Caves.) And most of all, I wish Ziyal hadn't had to see her father die in her own last minutes. But sadly, I knew that with their respective physiologies and metabolisms as they were, that it could happen no other way.
It's always tough to read back on it. But at least he has found peace. To me--this isn't the ending chapter: it's my hope the reader will imagine him gaining the heaven he believed so strongly in. And aside from his cousin Akellen Macet, who will survive him, and the two colleagues who are almost like brothers (Marritza and Damar)...most all of his loved ones are already on the other side and have been there for 18 years. So even if they're not there on this side, as he dies...they're most definitely waiting to receive him.
Vedek Tora may have captured and killed him...but she never defeated him. And his justice...will come where she can never touch him.
And what they did with the bodies later, in "Captives' Ransom"...they made a mistake. They thought that would disturb his soul somehow by just dumping the bodies...but they made a mistake. Someone finds them and lays them to rest in a more proper manner. And someday, when the Occupation is over, I think they'll finally disclose the location and let people come to pay their respects.
But this story is why it meant so much to me in the Round Robin to write the vision AU Dukat has when he goes to the edge of heaven with Captain Riker: he doesn't know it yet, but the reason he feels so comforted and at peace at the Fireplains of Revakian, able to focus on traversing from life to afterlife, is that this will be his final resting place.
So they failed in that, too. They helped him in a spiritual battle (one, paradoxically, in his past!) rather than hindering him.
That was something I really needed, because man...it does bring tears to my eyes to think about how this happened.