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ACT ONE

 

FADE IN:

 

5 INT. DS9 - COMMANDER’S OFFICE

 

RO stands leaning against her desk...

 

RO
A legal challenge?

 

Tenmei and Bashir stand before her, both firm and upright, both equally determined.

 

BASHIR
That’s right. As Chief Medical
Officer of Deep Space Nine, it is
my considered opinion that there
is no more to be done for Captain
Vaughn, and he should be taken
off life support and allowed to die.

TENMEI
And as his only surviving relative
I want your support in preventing
Doctor Bashir from...
(intentionally crude)
...pulling my father’s plug.

 

Ro pauses to figure out how to handle this delicately. She sympathises, but...

 

RO
Prynn, Julian is the actual doctor
here. I’m inclined to trust his
judgement in medical matters.
(to Bashir)
But... Prynn is also correct that
if the actual patient is incapable
of giving consent, next of kin has
the right to make that decision.

TENMEI
Yes, you’ve successfully restated
exactly what we both just said.

RO
(quiet glare)
I’ll let that pass considering the
emotion of the moment, Lieutenant.
But I’m not really sure what it is
you’re asking me to do here...

BASHIR
I’m asking you to allow me to
override Lieutenant Tenmei’s
familial authority and act in a
manner I judge as most medically
appropriate for my patient.

TENMEI
And I’m saying that if you want
to fight me for that authority,
Doctor, I’ll give you all the
fight you want.

 

Ro walks around her desk, stressed already. After a moment, she leans across her desk towards them.

 

RO
Is there not some way you
can figure this all out between
yourselves? There is quite a lot
going on, if you hadn’t noticed.

 

They glance at each other, and back to Ro. They have been fighting a while already, and she is their last resort.

 

RO
Fine. But we have no lawyers or
JAG officers on the station, and
with the way the galaxy is right
now, I doubt we’ll get one out
here any time soon.

BASHIR
You’re the station commander.
It’s within your authority to settle
a dispute between two of your
senior officers.

RO
Alright. Let me talk to Commander
Evik, and I’ll get back to you.
Dismissed, for now.

 

Bashir and Tenmei both turn and leave, clearly still cold with each other. Ro hangs her head...

 

6 INT. DS9 - SECURITY OFFICE

 

Lt Cmdr EVIK reads his main desk screen - a criminal report on the Ferengi trader SEKKI, as seen in 13x07. With it is a Starfleet security order with the headline ALL STARFLEET VESSELS AND INSTALLATIONS TO PLEASE BE AWARE.

He spots someone walking towards his office and the door OPENS, and he instantly switches the display. But when he sees that it is only Commander Ro, he relaxes again.

 

EVIK
Ah, Commander. I was going to
contact you soon, actually.

RO
(thrown off)
Why, what’s happened?

EVIK
I just received this order from
Starfleet Security. It’s gone
out to all posts, apparently.

 

He brings the report back and welcomes her around the desk to look at it. She peers over his shoulder...

 

RO
Sekki... Wanted for questioning
regarding suspected fraud and
sabotage. Do we know her?

EVIK
There’s no record of her ever
coming aboard the station. But
that doesn’t mean she won’t
at some point in the future.

RO
Interesting... Quark mentioned in
passing that Captain Dax called
him a couple of weeks ago to get
him to track down some Ferengi
financial records to do with a
case they were investigating.
I wonder if it’s connected.

EVIK
Should we speak to the Ambassador?

RO
(ponders)
No, not yet. It says to keep this
discreet, and Quark’s mouth can be
bigger than his ears sometimes. He
might tip someone off without even
meaning to. Let’s just increase
checks on anyone coming aboard.

EVIK
Understood, Commander. I’ll issue
modified orders to the teams.
(beat)
Oh I’m sorry, I just launched on
top of you there the moment you
came in. Did you need something?

RO
Actually yeah - Doctor Bashir and
Lieutenant Tenmei have dropped a
grenade in my lap. They’re arguing
over whether to continue care for
Captain Vaughn or not, and they
want me to decide for them.

EVIK
A delicate situation to be sure.
How can I help?

RO
Some advice to start with. I’ve
never had to manage this kind
of dispute, not as a commander.

EVIK
And... you’re worried you’re not
up to the task?

RO
I am not blessed with diplomatic
expertise, Nath. But I have served
under at least one captain who
was, and I was thinking of trying
to live up to his example.

EVIK
Laren...
(is that okay?
she smiles yes)
...you really need to start having
some confidence in yourself. It
sounds as if this captain, whoever
he was, would be proud of you.

RO
(wistful)
He always seemed to be. I could
never really understand why.

EVIK
I could tell you.

 

Ro smiles shyly...

 

7 INT. DS9 - COUNSELLOR’S OFFICE

 

Last seen 11x01 “Systems Under Repair”. Matthias sits calmly and patiently in the informal couch area while a Latino human male, Lt FANTOMOS, paces around the room...

 

FANTOMOS
It just doesn’t make sense. Sixty-
three billion? It can’t be right.

MATTHIAS
I’m afraid it’s the truth, Mister
Fantomos. You’re not the only
one to have trouble getting your
head around the sheer scale -

FANTOMOS
No, I mean it can’t be right. I
don’t believe it. Someone’s lying
to us. There’s no way that many
people could just... die.

MATTHIAS
Why would someone lie about it?
What would they have to gain?

FANTOMOS
I don’t know. But they must be.
There’s no other explanation...

 

CUT TO a different session, as now another human male, CPO JAGO, older and portly, sits in one of the chairs...

 

JAGO
It was just a broken leg! But
because I was in sickbay, I was
the only one not on deck when
my entire repair crew got blown
out through a hull breach.

MATTHIAS
Survivor’s guilt can be a very
powerful thing, Mister Jago.

JAGO
But it’s so pathetic! While they
were all doing their jobs, I was
laid up because I can’t climb
down a Jeffries Tube ladder like
any five-year-old. It wasn’t
even broken in battle!

MATTHIAS
Accidents happen. And just because
you suffered from bad luck or bad
timing, doesn’t mean you should
accept responsibility for bad things
happening to other people.

 

CUT TO a third session, where a Triexian female in security yellow, Lt Cmdr KARA NA MIIN, shifts awkwardly in a chair not designed to accommodate her three legs.

 

KARA NA MIIN
I’m just exhausted, Counsellor.
I’m not equipped to handle this.

MATTHIAS
I think a lot of us are feeling
the same way, Commander Na Miin.

KARA NA MIIN
But a lot of us weren’t thrust
into commanding a starship only
six years out of the Academy.
I wasn’t even the first officer.

MATTHIAS
I read your after-action report...

KARA NA MIIN
Eight Borg cubes coming right for 
us. The XO gets vaporised in front
of my eyes, and then Captain Tando
has a complete mental breakdown
in full view of the entire bridge.

MATTHIAS
But you did it. You took command
in the worst situation imaginable,
saved a hundred-million lives on
Coridan, led the Tecumseh through
weeks of rescue and recovery with
not a moment’s break, and did it
all from a captain’s chair that’s
not even designed for a Triexian.

 

The little joke has its intended effect - Na Miin smiles and allows her wriggling, uncomfortable body to relax.

 

MATTHIAS
So... if you should find yourself
thinking you’re not ready for
command, try to think instead of
what you accomplished even despite
not being ready for command. And
of what other triumphs you might
be capable in the future.

KARA NA MIIN
Thank you, Counsellor. But I’m
just keeping that uncomfortable
chair warm for Captain Tando.

 

Matthias tries to cover her worries about that...

 

CUT TO a fourth session, this one featuring the Trill male TANDO - the Tecumseh’s captain, but currently wearing little more than a hospital smock.

As Matthias leans forward to try to connect with him, Tando sits silently throughout, staring blankly, mouth open.

 

MATTHIAS
Captain Tando... I understand if
you don’t want to talk about what
you’ve experienced. Commander
Na Miin’s report said that you had
had several counselling sessions
with Doctor T’Haro before...
(she was murdered)
...coming to Deep Space Nine. And
you didn’t speak a word in any of
them. But I want you to know that
you’re in a safe place here. The
invasion is over, the Borg are gone,
and to the extent that winning
was possible, we did so.

 

No reaction from Captain Tando. She might as well be talking to herself...

 

MATTHIAS
I think we did, anyway.

 

FADE OUT

 

END OF ACT ONE



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