DAX: The Saratoga put in this morning.
WORF: We are not having another party.
DAX: I promise, not more than fifty or sixty
WORF: I can see it now. Two hundred people jammed into our quarters,
eating, drinking, laughing.
DAX: Sounds awful. What if I promise absolutely no laughing? No, I mean
it. You won't see a single smile the entire evening. It'll be the
grimmest party you've ever been to.
WORF: When do you want to have this party?
DAX: Next week. And I was thinking maybe this evening should have a
WORF: What kind of theme?
DAX: What if everyone came as their favourite Klingon? Bad idea.
QUARK: Commander, your holosuite is ready.
DAX: Have fun exercising.
QUARK: No party?
DAX: I came this close.
(Quark hands Kira a bouquet of flowers.)
KIRA: Thank you, Quark.
QUARK: Don't mention it, Major. Glad to be of help.
DAX: Bajoran lilacs. Is there something going on between the two of you
that I don't know about?
KIRA: Don't be disgusting.
KIRA: I ordered them for myself.
DAX: Well that's nice. I thought you didn't like flowers.
KIRA: I don't.
DAX: I'm confused.
KIRA: Jadzia, there's such a thing as privacy.
DAX: Not between friends.
KIRA: It's my mother's birthday. She would've been sixty today, and my
father always said that these were her favourite.
DAX: That's a nice way to remember your mother.
KIRA: I wish I did remember her. I was only three when she died at the
(Kira selects and pays for a decorative thin pyramid glass something at
DAX: Well, I'd bet she'd be proud of you and what you've done with your
KIRA: I'd like to think so. I've always been proud of her. My father
always said she was the bravest woman he ever met.
(Kira is sleeping.)
COMPUTER: Major Kira. You have an incoming transmission.
KIRA: From whom?
COMPUTER: Unable to identify.
KIRA: Put it through.
DUKAT [on monitor]: Ah, Major, there you are. I'm sorry to wake you.
KIRA: What the hell do you want, Dukat?
DUKAT [on monitor]: Oh, don't bother, Major. I guarantee you won't be
able to trace this transmission.
KIRA: Then why don't you just tell me where you are?
DUKAT [on monitor]: Because that's not why I called. I want to help
you, Major, the way Captain Sisko helped me.
KIRA: I have no idea what you're talking about.
DUKAT [on monitor]: Captain Sisko gave me the clarity to see beyond the
lies, the self-deceptions that were controlling my life. He helped me
see to the truth about myself. And now I'm going to do the same for
you. And what better day to do it than on your mother's birthday.
KIRA: Is that suppose to upset me, that you know it's my mother's
DUKAT [on monitor]: She was a striking woman, your mother. Although
when we first met, she was very self-conscious about that scar along
the side of her face. She used to try to cover it up with a strand of
KIRA: Nice try, Dukat. But you never knew my mother. She died in the
DUKAT [on monitor]: Singha refugee centre? I'm afraid not, Major. That
was something your father told you because he couldn't bear to face the
KIRA: What truth?
DUKAT [on monitor]: That your mother left him to be with me.
KIRA: You're lying.
DUKAT [on monitor]: Your mother and I were lovers almost from the
moment we met, and we remained lovers until the day she died.
KIRA: I've had enough of this.
DUKAT [on monitor]: I see you have lilacs on your nightstand. Your
mother would have been touched. She loved Bajoran lilacs. There. I told
you the truth was liberating, Major. Now don't you feel better? I do.
(After the opening credits, Kira is dressed and at her computer.)
KIRA: Computer, locate Cardassian occupation file, Singha refugee
centre. Find and display Bajoran identity profile Kira Meru.
(Up comes the data.)
(Kira enters Ops on the turbolift.)
O'BRIEN: You're just going to have to take my word for it. The battle
of the Alamo would make a hell of a holosuite programme.
BASHIR: All right, all right, let me get this straight. There are two
hundred of us trapped inside some crumbling old mission or whatever,
surrounded by two thousand enemy troops, is that right?
O'BRIEN: That's right.
BASHIR: Do we win?
O'BRIEN: No, we lose.
BASHIR: Why do you want to play a programme where we lose?
O'BRIEN: You're missing the point. There's nothing more noble than a
heroic defeat, especially against overwhelming odds.
BASHIR: In life, maybe, but not in the holosuite.
KIRA: Chief, you were suppose to have finished recalibrating those
induction modulators yesterday.
O'BRIEN: Yeah, we had a bit of a problem replacing some of the coil
KIRA: Save the excuses. I want it done within the hour. Doctor, is
there a reason for your visit?
BASHIR: What? Actually, Miles and I were chatting
KIRA: I thought not. We're on duty here, if you don't mind.
BASHIR: I don't want to interfere.
KIRA: All right, everyone. We're not at the Replimat. We're not here to
drink raktajinos and catch up on the latest gossip. Let's get to work.
KIRA: Odo, I've just been informed of the increased
criminal activity on the Promenade.
ODO: It's not as bad as it sounds, Major. We're talking about a few
incidents of petty theft. I've already assigned two deputies.
KIRA: I'd prefer that you handle the matter yourself.
ODO: If you think it's necessary.
KIRA: I do. And make sure that you keep me informed of your progress.
ODO: Of course. Is there something else on your mind?
KIRA: Meaning what?
ODO: Meaning I talked with Doctor Bashir. He told me that you seemed
irritable. I see he's not exaggerating. Would you care to tell me
what's bothering you?
KIRA: I appreciate the offer, Odo, but I don't think talking about it
is going to help.
ODO: Sounds serious.
KIRA: It is.
ODO: Well, if you won't talk about it, perhaps you should consider
doing something about it.
SISKO: A transmission from Dukat? This is the first
I've heard of it.
KIRA: That's because I didn't report it.
SISKO: Why not?
KIRA: It was of a personal nature. I tried to trace the signal, but
SISKO: What did he want?
KIRA: He said he knew my mother, that they were lovers.
SISKO: You don't believe him, do you?
KIRA: He knew certain things about her. Personal things.
SISKO: Well, Gul Dukat is a very resourceful man. I'm sure he knows a
lot about your family, about all of our families.
KIRA: I keep trying to tell myself that, but I need to know.
SISKO: That may not be possible. Major.
KIRA: There is a way. I can visit the Temple of Iponu on Bajor and
consult the Orb of Time.
SISKO: Excuse me?
KIRA: I need to know the truth.
SISKO: Let me get this straight. You want to travel back in time to see
if Dukat and your mother were lovers?
KIRA: That's right.
SISKO: Major, the Federation has very strict regulations
KIRA: This has nothing to do with the Federation. I need your help as
the Emissary, not as Starfleet captain. The Emissary can see to it that
I am allowed access to the orb. After that, it's up to the Prophets. If
they feel that my request is worthy, they'll send me where I need to
go. If not, I've made a trip to Bajor for nothing.
SISKO: And if they do send you back, what then? What makes you so sure
you won't interfere with the timeline?
KIRA: The Prophets will be guiding me. Nothing will happen without
their blessings. Please, Emissary, please, let me seek the will of the
[Temple of Iponu]
(Kira is escorted to a small, dimly lit chapel
where the orb box sits on an altar. She opens it.)
[Singha refugee centre]
(Kira is crouching in the corner by a rock wall.
It's dark and a child is crying somewhere. People are settling down to
eat a plate of food. She wanders past areas marked off by curtains. A
man comes in carrying a child and leading another by hand.)
TABAN: Meru, I found Nerys.
(Kira looks over to a woman holding a baby.)
MERU: Where was she?
TABAN: Wandering over there, scrounging for food.
MERU: Come here, sweetie, beside me. Here.
TABAN: That's all? It's barely half a cup.
MERU: They've cut everyone's rations.
TABAN: It's not enough. How do they expect us to survive?
MERU: The Cardassians don't care whether or not we survive. They won't
be happy until we're all dead. Come here, sweetie, come here. Have some
MAN: Excuse me. That soup. It's ours.
TABAN: What are you talking about? My wife stood in line all day to get
it. If you think you can just
(A second thug puts a knife to Taban's throat.)
MAN: Just what?
MERU: It's for the children. They're hungry.
MAN: We are all hungry.
KIRA: That's right, we are. And hunger can make people do stupid
MAN: Like what you're doing now?
KIRA: Cardassians are the enemy. We shouldn't be fighting amongst
ourselves. We should be trying to help each other.
MAN: That's what we were doing. Helping ourselves to some soup.
KIRA: Hey, you want soup, you go stand in line like everyone else.
MAN: We may have to take orders from the spoonheads, but we don't have
to take them from you.
(Thug two goes for Kira. She disarms him and throws him at his friend
then picks up the knife. They both run off.)
TABAN: Thank you. I wish we could repay your kindness somehow, but we
have so little food.
KIRA: That's all right. I'm not hungry.
MERU: I can't remember the last time I met a Bajoran who wasn't hungry.
I'm Kira Meru.
KIRA: I'm just glad I could help.
MERU: And this is my husband, Taban. My son Reon, my son Pohl, and my
KIRA: They're beautiful.
NERYS: Mommy, mommy.
MERU: What is it, honey? What is it? Tell me. (whisper) She wants to
know what your name is.
KIRA: Me? I'm Luma Rahl. It's nice to meet you, Nerys.
(A Bajoran man comes in with a Cardassian escort.)
BASSO: Attention! The new Cardassian Ore Processing Centre orbiting
Bajor is nearing completion. The Cardassian troops stationed
there will require comfort women to make their tour of duty less
(Basso gives a bundle to the woman's husband)
BASSO: From now on you'll receive extra rations of food and medicine,
courtesy of our Prefect, Gul Dukat. Her.
(A Cardassian takes the baby from Meru.)
BASSO: And her.
(Kira is dragged away.)
MERU: But my children!
BASSO: Your children will eat better than they have any right to.
MERU: I love you. Don't let them forget me.
TABAN: Oh, no, no.
(Kira and Nerys look at each other.)
CARDASSIAN: I said go!
(Up on Terok Nor, the women are being assigned
quarters in pair. Kira spots the pattern and changes places so she ends
up with her mother.)
BASSO: Ladies, can I have your attention please. You will find food in
your quarters. Eat as much as you want and make sure you get a good
night's rest. You'll want to look your best tomorrow. Oh, and feel free
to linger as long as you want in the sonic showers. Cardassians value
(Basso unlocks all the doors and they go inside.)
[Kira + Meru's quarters]
KIRA: Meru, listen to me. I know things look bad,
but don't give up just yet. We'll find a way to get out of here.
KIRA: There must be a resistance cell operating here on the station.
We'll contact them. They'll help us get away.
MERU: I don't believe this.
(A banquet is laid out on the table)
MERU: Fresh moba. Do you know how long it's been since I've seen fresh
(They start eating.)
MERU: Nice? Look at this. Katterpod beans, hasperat, veklava, a pot of
deka tea. We could live on this for a year!
KIRA: Easy, easy. You don't want to make yourself sick.
MERU: Sick from too much food? That would be a change. If only Taban
and the children were here. The Cardassians said they would take care
of them, so maybe they will.
KIRA: Don't count on it. We need to find a way to get off this station.
Once we do, we'll figure out a way to free your family.
MERU: Then what?
KIRA: We'll hide in the hills, we'll join the Resistance.
MERU: I suppose that's possible.
KIRA: Of course it is. Till then, we just need to bide our (Kira sees
the scar) I'm sorry.
MERU: I failed to show a Cardassian soldier the proper respect.
KIRA: We all have scars of one kind or another.
MERU: Maybe. But most aren't quite so evident.
KIRA: It's not so bad.
MERU: Why do you keep doing that?
MERU: Helping me. First at the refugee centre and now here.
KIRA: I don't have many friends.
MERU: Well, you have one now.
(The women are dressed up in highly revealing
BASSO: Well done. I can hardly believe that you're the same women I met
yesterday. In fact, you're not. Your old lives have ended. Your pasts
have been erased. You have one purpose and one purpose only. To provide
comfort and care to the Cardassian officers stationed here. Do that
well, and you'll want for nothing. Fail, and you and your family will
be sent to a labour camp. Now remember, ladies, you're all easily
replaceable. Make one mistake and I won't hesitate to
DUKAT: Basso! That's enough. Welcome to Terok Nor. I hope your stay
here will be a pleasant one. I assure you, I will do everything
possible to make it so. I suspect that many of you must be feeling a
bit uneasy right now. I'm well aware that among the Bajoran population
there is a perception that all Cardassians are to be feared, that we
are a cruel and heartless people. I hope to change that. Not with
words, but with actions, in the hope that you will come to appreciate
the better part of our nature. I assure you we are capable of great
MERU: What of our families? Are they all right?
BASSO: Who said you could speak? Guards!
DUKAT: Stay where you are. Your families will be well taken care of.
That, I promise you.
(Dukat discovers her scar.)
DUKAT: What is this?
BASSO: Forgive me, Prefect. I didn't notice the imperfection. I'll have
her removed at once.
DUKAT: Get me a dermal regenerator.
DUKAT: Now. I'm afraid to ask how you came by such a mark.
MERU: It's nothing.
DUKAT: On the contrary, it's an unfortunate reminder of the gulf that
exists between our two peoples. It must be removed immediately. Just
relax. It's all right. Relax.
(And Dukat heals the scar.)
DUKAT: There. Beautiful. Carry on.
BASSO: Well, I'd say congratulations are in order. You've all passed
your first test.
(Later, there's a party with lots of drink and women being pulled down
onto Cardassian laps. Kira and Meru are the only wallflowers.)
KIRA: Mind telling me what you're smiling about?
MERU: The Prophets. I never realised they had such a sense of humour.
When I was a child, I dreamed of having enough food to eat and pretty
clothes to wear and now look at me. I have everything I ever wanted and
I feel horrible.
KIRA: It is kind of funny in a horrible way.
MERU: I suppose if I can survive starvation, I could survive this.
After all, we Bajorans can survive anything.
GUL: You! Think you can stand there hiding in a corner all night?
(The Gul takes Meru away, leaving Kira clutching a kanar bottle for
LEGATE: I don't remember seeing you before.
KIRA: I just arrived yesterday.
LEGATE: And I bet I know what you're thinking. You'd like nothing
better than to get us all drunk so you could kill us in our sleep.
KIRA: Are you sure you're not part Betazoid?
LEGATE: Come. Sit on my lap and tell me how much you hate Cardassians.
You Bajoran women, you're all so bony.
KIRA: That's because you Cardassians eat all our food.
LEGATE: You know, I could have you executed for that kind of insolence.
KIRA: And that's one of the reasons we hate you so much.
LEGATE: Clever girl. Now pour me some more of that kanar and let's see
if we can't work out our differences.
(Dukat enters with Basso and sees the Gul pawing Meru in a recess.)
DUKAT: Let her go. I said, let her go.
GUL: All I said to her was
DUKAT: I don't care what you were saying. I don't like what you were
doing. Now get away from her. Are you all right? Basso, escort this
woman back to her quarters and see that her privacy is respected.
BASSO: She will not be disturbed.
LEGATE: (sotto) I only hope you won't condemn us all for the boorish
behaviour of one man.
DUKAT: I only hope you won't condemn us all for the boorish behaviour
of one man.
(Meru and Basso leave.)
KIRA: How did you know he was going to say that?
LEGATE: Let's just say this is not the first performance I've seen of
this little melodrama. That woman should consider herself fortunate.
She's caught the Prefect's eye. As of now, she's off limits to the rest
of us. As for you
KIRA: I know, I know. More kanar.
(Kira is helping the drunk Legate stagger along.)
KIRA: Now, one foot in front of another.
LEGATE: Don't tell me what to do. I'll put my feet wherever I want. I'm
KIRA: Whatever you say. Just try not to stumble out of any airlocks on
your way home.
LEGATE: I'm not going home. I'm coming in with you.
KIRA: No you're not. You're going back to your quarters and you're
going to sleep.
LEGATE: I want comfort and I want it now. You are a comfort woman,
aren't you? You're dressed like one.
KIRA: Don't let appearances fool you.
LEGATE: That mouth of yours is going to get you in trouble someday.
Now, let's go get some sleep.
KIRA: I have a better idea. You go sleep in your quarters, I'll go
sleep in mine, and tomorrow
LEGATE: Tomorrow you'll be all mine to do with as I please.
(He totters away.)
KIRA: I can hardly wait.
[Kira + Meru's quarters]
KIRA: Meru, I'm back. I'm going to have to shower
for a week to get the smell of that legate off me.
(Basso comes out of Meru's bedroom with her clothes.)
BASSO: I'll be sure to tell him you said that.
KIRA: What are you doing here? Where's Meru?
BASSO: Looks like you're going to have these quarters all to yourself,
at least for a little while.
KIRA: I said where's Meru?
BASSO: She's moving up in the world. Your friend must have hidden
talents I wasn't aware of. Our beloved Prefect has invited her to share
KIRA: I want to see her.
BASSO: Do you?
KIRA: I said take me to her.
(A Cardassian grabs her, she thumps him and gets knocked down by the
[Promenade - Ghetto area]
(Kira is thrown through the gate.)
(Weeks have passed during the break. Kira's got proper clothes again
and is queuing for soup like everyone else.)
HALB: (serving the coloured water) So tell me, how's work going on the
ore processing centre?
KIRA: You ought to join the work detail sometime, find out for
HALB: All in good time. Once the centre is up and running, we'll all be
slaving away down there.
(Kira goes to a table and Halb follows her.)
HALB: I have news for you.
KIRA: About my friend?
HALB: I know why you haven't heard from her in the last few weeks. She
hasn't been on the station.
KIRA: What are you talking about?
HALB: Word has it she's been off on a little vacation with Gul Dukat.
They just got back today. Why is that woman so important to you? She is
nothing but a collaborator.
KIRA: She is not a collaborator.
HALB: She's a comfort woman for the spoonheads, isn't she?
KIRA: So was I.
HALB: For a day. But I've been watching you. You have no love for the
KIRA: Neither does my friend. Look, I told you already, I don't want to
join your resistance cell. Just leave me alone.
HALB: I will, I promise. But first I need for you to draw a map for me.
KIRA: A map of what?
HALB: The Cardy side of the station.
KIRA: Well, like you said, I was only there one day.
HALB: Anything you remember will help. Quarters, corridors, meeting
KIRA: Why? What are you planning?
HALB: It doesn't concern you. Now are you going to help us or not?
BASSO: You. Follow me.
(Kira is escorted to a section with a red security
BASSO: You may enter.
KIRA: Are you all right? I've been worried about you since the night
they took you.
MERU: I know. I wanted to get a message to you.
KIRA: Has he hurt you?
MERU: Hurt me? No, he hasn't hurt me. I wish I knew how to explain to
you these past few weeks, make you understand.
KIRA: Understand what?
DUKAT: That I'm not the monster you think I am.
(Dukat carries a vase of lilacs.)
DUKAT: You see? I told you I'd find a big enough vase. What do you
MERU: They're beautiful.
(Meru and Dukat hold hands.)
DUKAT: I don't think your friend approves of the flowers, or of me.
Meru, are you sure this is the woman you want as your companion?
DUKAT: As you wish. The fact is, I've treated Meru with nothing but
kindness and consideration. If you don't believe me, ask her. I'll be
back as soon as this meeting is finished.
(Dukat kisses Meru and leaves. Kira looks like she's about to be sick.)
MERU: It's true. He's very different from what I expected.
KIRA: Don't let that smile fool you. He's still the enemy.
MERU: It's not that simple.
KIRA: Yes, it is. Meru, listen to me. While you're in here playing
parlour games, he's busy carrying out the extermination of our people.
MERU: That's not true. He's written to Central Command urging them to
rethink their policy toward Bajor.
KIRA: I don't care if he played you a holo-recording of him on his
hands and knees begging Central Command to end the occupation. It would
still be a lie. Like that first night, when he saved you from that Gul?
That wasn't real. He set the whole thing up to win you over.
MERU: He told me. He tells me everything. You just don't know him.
KIRA: I don't need to know him. I know the things he's done. Look what
he did to you. He took you away from your family, from your children.
MERU: He's promised to help them. He's going to send them food and
KIRA: That still doesn't make it right. What about your husband? Taban
loves you. How can you forget him so quickly?
MERU: I have not forgotten him. What do you expect me to do? Kick and
bite every time Dukat comes near me? How would that help Taban or the
KIRA: Is that what you tell yourself? That you're doing it for the
children? The clothes, the food, the easy living, that you're doing it
all for them? Are you that deluded? It's not for them, it's for you.
You like it here. You enjoy playing house with that murderer. Don't you
see what you are, what you've allowed yourself to become? You're a
MERU: A collaborator? Because I share Dukat's bed?
KIRA: Nom because you like sharing his bed. Because you've fallen in
love with him.
MERU: Where're you going?
KIRA: Back where I belong.
[Promenade - Ghetto area]
HALB: It's composed of ultritium resin (it's an
earring) which means it's doubtful the Cardassian sensors will pick it
up. Of course, there's always a chance.
KIRA: You let me worry about that.
HALB: You sound like you've done this before.
KIRA: You'd be surprised.
HALB: Remember, the bomb is set to go off three minutes after it's been
activated. And once it's activated, it cannot be disarmed. So make sure
you have enough time to get away.
KIRA: How large of a blast radius are we talking about?
HALB: Twenty metres. I suggest you plant it somewhere in Dukat's
KIRA: I'll pick the right spot for it.
HALB: What about that Bajoran mistress of his?
KIRA: What about her?
HALB: You cannot risk telling her what you're doing, not even to save
KIRA: Why would I do that? Like you said, she's a collaborator. She
deserves whatever she gets.
(A little later, at the gate)
BASSO: I'm beginning to find you very tiresome.
KIRA: Yeah, I don't like you much either. Now I need you to take me to
see Kira Meru.
BASSO: I have better things to do than to shuttle you around this
station. It's time you decided which side of this gate you want to be
KIRA: I have. Now take me to Kira so that I can apologise to her.
BASSO: Guard. A wise decision.
(Off they go with Kira wearing the bomb earring. It gets through the
security screen safely.)
MERU: I didn't expect to see you again.
KIRA: I came because I owe you an apology. The things I said, they were
unfair. I'd like us to be friends again.
MERU: So would I.
DUKAT: Whatever makes you happy, my dear.
(Meru hugs Kira.)
MERU: Can I get you something?
KIRA: Maybe later.
MERU: All right. First thing we do is get you some new quarters.
Something close by.
KIRA: Sounds good.
BASSO: I have a copy of that transmission you requested.
DUKAT: Thank you, Basso. That'll be all.
BASSO: What about her?
DUKAT: Don't concern yourself with Luma. She's not going to cause us
any more trouble, are you?
KIRA: That's not what I'm here for.
DUKAT: No, it isn't. Well, Basso, you heard. Find her some quarters.
BASSO: Right away.
DUKAT: This is for you. I think you'll find it very interesting. I'll
be in my study if you need me.
(Dukat leaves. Kira activates the earring bomb and puts it into a pot
KIRA: I'll see to my quarters.
MERU: Okay, Luma.
(Meru puts the rod into a monitor.)
TABAN [on monitor]: Meru, I hope the Cardassians aren't lying to me and
that they really will send this message to you. I know it's only been a
few weeks that we've been back home, but you should see the children.
It's like they've been transformed. Reon and Pohl are laughing and
playing together, they've never been happier. And I swear, little Nerys
must have gained five pounds. Of course, they keep asking for you. I've
told them that you're still at the refugee centre. I think that's best,
at least for the time being. I can't believe how much I miss you. I
think about you all the time. You've saved all our lives. I hope you
realise that. (Meru is crying) Never forget it, not even for an
instant. Every day I pray to the Prophets that you'll find some peace
in this new life of yours. I believe that even in the worst of times,
we can still find moments of joy and kindness. If you can find that
kindness, hold on to it. And remember, no matter what happens, I love
you, Meru. I'll always love you.
KIRA: Come on, we've got to get out of here.
KIRA: Dukat, get out here now! Go!
KIRA: There's a bomb.
DUKAT: Get out of the way!
(Boom! and they go flying down the corridor.)
DUKAT: Meru, Meru.
[Temple of Iponu]
(And so vision ends.)
KIRA: I've always hated collaborators. I mean, what
could be worse than betraying your own people? During the occupation,
if I ever had doubt about what their fate should be all I would think
of my mother, how she gave her life for Bajor. She was a hero, they
were traitors. It was that simple. Or so I thought.
SISKO: She did what she had to do to save her family. To save you.
KIRA: It doesn't make it right.
SISKO: Maybe not, but it was her decision to make.
KIRA: I did some checking. She died in a Cardassian hospital seven
years after she met Dukat. Seven years. Do you know how many Bajorans
died in labour camps during that time? Died, while my mother sat
sipping kanar with Dukat.
SISKO: Tell me something, Nerys. If you hate her that much, why did you
save her life?
KIRA: Believe me, there's a part of me that wishes that I hadn't. But
the fact is, no matter what she did, she was still my mother.