The Time of Hagalaz, Presumed Guilty Part Two

Chapter Fourteen

Tan had penetrated the UFP security files when Anon arrived in his quarters. He watched the data begin to scroll across the monitor screen of the console. Estimated time of completion: eighteen hours. That was ridiculous when Anar insisted Hawk’s profile of violence included impatience. To pursue this line of defense wasn't helpful, it was a waste of time, increasing the danger of sparking retaliation. The critical need to locate Hawk was necessary only because they were refusing to leave. They were leaving. Anon’s decision was made and it was final. If Anar was uncertain as to the weight a threat would carry aimed directly at Shakaar without the supporting evidence he was attempting to gather, Anon knew of a certain way to cancel the conference now without risking complicated repercussions for any of them. Janice. However much her refusal to continue to participate would alienate her from the Federation or Bajor was irrelevant. The only place she was going from there was to Cardassia Prime with him as his wife.

"Janice is in the morgue," Pfrann was complaining behind him, anticipating he might order Tan to concentrate on finding Janice. "Safe. That's what they have her doing; helping them. You can't see her or talk to her now. Let him continue. We need the information."

He said safe. Anon did not want her involved. Helping anyone, knowing any of this. Dak'jar, anything. It was not going to do anything except terrorize her.

Pfrann was reading his mind. "We've replaced the medical file. If she runs the compilation it won't be Dak'jar."

No, someone, anyone. Why did he think that changed anything?

"Garak knows of Anar. The Ferengi Quark. There is nothing to stop either of them from informing the Federation. You forget Hawk already baits Sisko with Anar --"

"I don't forget anything," Anon interrupted. "Garak and Quark know of Janice -- "

"So does Leeta," Pfrann assured. "The Ferengi Rom. The alien Morn -- "

"There is everything to stop them!" Anon stopped him harshly. "Confusion," he clarified before there were five more dead identifiable bodies in the morgue, none of them with white hair. "Quark can't sell what he doesn't understand."

Pfrann glanced at Tan. "And Garak?"

Couldn't sell what he didn't understand. The time they claimed not to have on their side Anon maintained they had if they left now; unable to embrace Anar's belief they were prisoners of an unseen captor with little chance of making it through the airlock alive.

Anar couldn’t embrace Klingons hovering above and beyond Hawk because he was Cardassian the same as Tan who was unable to relinquish the idea of a bomb capable of being discovered and disarmed. That was not to their detriment as much as it heightened Anar's awareness that he was going through the motions of a defense that meant little unless it was part of the Prophets' plan. He prayed that it was, knowing the prayers eased his fears of an inability to do anything except watch. The mastery he cultivated and honed in Hawk was his own. He was chasing himself. His skills without the conscience. The evidence he raced to gather to force Shakaar into listening where he had refused to listen for four months was glaring in its value as a defense of his own position. Laying the blame at the feet of where it belonged; Shakaar. Fully aware of Hawk's Threat Force and believing it to be Anar's. But what was the necessity of a defense unless some act first preceded it? Presuming it to be Quark's was foolish. Eighteen hours to complete the UFP link to locate data that may not even be there guaranteed a second strike by Hawk long before that time. If Shakaar still refused to cancel there would be a third. The situation was rapidly becoming a contest between trying to circumvent Hawk, and attempting to read between the lines of the piece of the Prophets' puzzle Anar held, to determine what should be his next and correct moves beyond the temptation of embracing his past and declaring open warfare against his brother.

A contest of wills to be held where? The center of the Promenade? Anar was never so aware of his phaser rifle propped against the base of the console. Almost mocking in its intimation that he was going nowhere except in circles as he sat there at the helm of the Tir downloading the secrets of the Bajoran security files to Tan aboard the station. For all the comforting assistance afforded him by the Prophets in his escape from Sisko, he was not confident Janice would not be revealed to be expendable in their determination to protect the future from its dangerous past. That was not a prospect he enjoyed thinking of; certainly not a choice he came there willing to make. It was a matter of faith. Faith, the information the Prophets chose not to reveal to him was irrelevant to his role.

"Of guardian, Anar, not Maquis," he told himself sternly, much to the questionable appreciation of Anon's helmsman and the relief clearly flickering across the face of the child Ziyal continuing to watch him closely from behind the readout display. "Leave the phaser rifle alone. If Sisko can know when to pick up arms and when not to, so can and will you."

"He seeks your head as you speak," the Cardassian retorted.

Oh, yes. Just a subtle way of the Prophets conveying he served best staying put.

"Anon…" It was 1700 when Janice returned to her quarters with a smile for the Federation Deputy Task Leader sitting and reading inside her cabin, to round the corner into her sleeping area and have Anon appear on her screen monitor moments later. "What are you doing?" her excited whisper held more concern for his health than potential discovery. "You're supposed to be in the Infirmary…"

"I must see you," his eyes glistened anxiously back into hers. "Your grotto's too far. I thought of my Cardassian sauna. I'll send for you."

"Oh, you will," she teased.

He remained anxious. "A couple of hours? Tell them you're tired and want to sleep -- can you do that?"

Janice couldn't see why not. The security officer was only there to insure the sanctity of her quarters until she arrived. That's what the woman said anyway when Janice walked back into her living area. Pleasantly presuming Kira was the one who had hailed to make sure Janice had been notified the conference schedule had changed and would resume at 1000 the following morning, the deputy handed Janice the padd she had been reviewing of their itinerary and left to assume her post outside.

"No, I was just thinking of going to bed…" Janice finished her unnecessary explanation with a shrug for the door closing between them. That was easy. Any concerns or worries went out of her head other than in scolding Anon for having left the Infirmary prematurely.

Anon posed defensively against Pfrann's continued complaints. This arbitrary transporting back and forth had long passed flagrant and was going to be their undoing. Considering the intricate maneuvers Tan was currently involved in to circumvent the station and the UFP's security systems? It was definitely too much to ask; the odds of discovery were rapidly piling against them.

"I can't talk to Janice here…how can I talk to her here?" Anon insisted. With him, Tan, and everyone else there? It wasn't private. If it could be made private, it was still intimidating with the security surrounding them and Damar two doors away.

What was he talking about? It would be the same thing on the ship. It would be the same thing at home. Sentries, Tan, Damar…"Anon…" Pfrann said testily.

"No," Anon refused, fearful of frightening Janice particularly because he knew what he was planning to do was much closer to telling her what to do rather than talking about anything. Ordering her, if necessary, they were going to leave today, tonight, tomorrow morning at the latest. He didn't know how she was going to react other than to dismiss what he was saying like she always did on the planet whenever he attempted to explain logic to her. Easygoing and relaxed, Janice was as stubborn as he, and he was worried enough about clashing with her than to have to think about anything else. The holosuites were secure. Pfrann was monitoring. Tan, Sisko, security, Anar, everyone. He had permission, and he wouldn't have permission if it wasn't secure.

"We're going to get caught!" Pfrann sputtered.

No, they were not. Even though Anon had an idea he wanted to be found out. Not being able to protect Janice openly was as aggravating as the prospect of putting her on display. That was what his father would do, not what he was going to do. He was going to see his wife to talk to her. The galaxy would know everything anyway when she resigned her position to return with him to Cardassia -- making it through the airlock alive.

"Alive, Pfrann, alive," Anon stressed. "They have to guarantee Janice diplomatic immunity as my wife; they have to do that! Sisko, Shakaar, all of them. They can't do anything about it other than protect her. That's what they have to, and will do! Tell him!" he ordered Tan.

Tan snorted, trusting the Federation and Shakaar as much as they trusted him. Unconcerned about his ability to protect or to prevent detection, he probably agreed the unnecessary risk was foolish, but also knew Anon could not be talked out of it. The Cardassian ego would never allow it even if his lineage wasn't drawn from Dukat. Anon's weighty rank of commander settled the matter. Four sentries accompanied Anon to the holosuites, verified the program was operating correctly and signaled Tan who transported Janice without incident at approximately 2100. It apparently never occurred to any of them that of the “everyone” monitoring for anomalous activity one of them might also be Hawk.

The eyes of Hawk regarded the Bajoran security officer who had stood guard at Dukat's bedside in the station's Infirmary. The man's ardent loyalty to Shakaar found him foregoing discreet inquiries among the ranking Special Forces to conducting his own investigation; one that eventually brought him to the old ore bays and not long afterwards into the arms of Hawk's forces.

"I know this station," the Bajoran explained his miraculous abilities while Hawk stooped in his arrogance to thank the Prophets for their assistance. "I spent ten years here, in these ore bays, throughout Prefect Dukat's reign."

"And should my understanding include sympathy?" Hawk wondered. "Or outrage over your failure to do anything about your situation other than whine?"

The Bajoran looked over the three Maquis agents at their youthful leader's side. "My loyalty is to Shakaar, the same as yours. I disagree with your methods, and respect your anger. We have been betrayed. The people's representative is the concubine of the Cardassian Dukat."

"You find that startling," Hawk guessed.

The Bajoran took a step forward, attempting to place the face he had never seen before in his life, yet somehow looked familiar. The jutting cheekbones under their tightly stretched flesh… "Cardassian…" He stiffened.

"Not even close," Hawk smiled, his lips thin, his teeth like square, white blocks. "Though I have been told by a few experts that I would be a perfect candidate for surgical reconstruction -- if it wasn't for my delicate size."

"I still know you," the Bajoran insisted.

"Hardly," Hawk assured. "My brother, if you knew me you would never have come here, certainly not alone."

There was a Cardassian at the Bajoran's side. If no one else saw her, the officer did. A woman, young, saying something about taking her hand. "What are you doing here?" he questioned her when the light faded and they were left alone just to sit and talk.

"Attempting to understand my father?" Ziyal extended chagrined. "It's no easy task."

Hawk scattered the ashes of the Bajoran's remains with his foot.

"Transporter carrier wave," one of his agents reported a minor ripple in his readings indicative of Dominion technology. "It's the Tir."

Hawk's laugh was short and empty; his footsteps echoing along the steel floor of the ore room. "You have to be kidding me."

"See for yourself."

Of course he wasn't kidding. Hawk's head hung. He should be offended by the affront to his power; he was livid. Vain or impatient, he required no less than immediate acquiescence to his demands. Instead the day had come and gone with the conference rescheduled, not canceled. His demonstration of strong Bajoran objection to the congress had fallen on deaf ears. The mode and method of anyone else's responses were irrelevant. Shakaar and Bajor were supposed to surrender. Failing to do so, his sights refocused on Lange. The malicious last minute inclusion of her as a specified target the evening before, bungled by Assura and his brother's sergeant Dak'jar, loomed today as the potential tool to break Shakaar's resistance to being held hostage by his uncle's will.

"Do you want to know where?" the agent asked.

"Well, let me see…" Hawk's stare was cold. "Maybe I can guess?"

"The holosuites."

"The holosuites," Hawk repeated. Perhaps it was him. Simply failing to understand the correlation between wining and dining and war. His nephew's arrogance was equaled only by Dukat's.

"He is Dukat," his agent reminded.

Then Hawk guessed there was only one thing to do. Remind Dukat he was Shakaar. "Maybe they'll get it right this time," he hinted, having an idea they would.

Janice transported into the steaming crater of a volcano. That's how hot it looked it should feel through the smoky darkness wet with heavy clouds of some stench illuminated by heated rocks glowing red in their molten pools of amber sludge. Anon waited proud and anticipatory beside a large, stone bath of a slimy liquid that he had ready to cool her off if necessary. She tried to be nonchalant and keep her nose from wrinkling at the overwhelming nauseating smell. "So this is a Cardassian sauna…"

"Yes, this is it…what do you think?"

He was so eager. She couldn't help her wince. "Think?"

Anon's mood deflated. "You don't like it."

No, she liked it. It wasn't that at all. "What's that smell?"

He was defensive immediately; waving his arm and ordering the program to end. "Fish oil, yes, fish oil -- forget about it. The smell, everything."

"Anon…" Janice sighed as the sauna vanished and they were left standing in the barren reality of the holosuite.

"I said, forget about it!" he stalked back and forth across the cold, lifeless floor. "You don't like it, fine. You don't like anything I do. What else is new? Nothing I do is right. I can't stand that about you. Don't tell me what to do!"

Janice supposed he did look a little like a frustrated, angry bull. She couldn't see the reference to an amphibian in him really, any more than she understood why he was so upset. "Anon…" she tried.

"I am Cardassian!" he charged, "not you!" That was it that explained it all. To control was synonymous with his species and he had absolutely no control over her, not since the day he met her. Questions and more questions about why he thought or did anything he did at all. Questions that he tried to answer with about as much success and penetration as he would have talking to a wall. It made him crazy. Unless he was willing to dictate to her, rip her childlike illusions to shreds he could never hope to help her to see or understand anything. Least of all about Klingons, Hawk, or anyone else whose intentions weren't as honorable and pure as hers, including his own.

His stomach wrenched. It wasn't his wound, it was his guilt. All the nonsense about a consulate and Ziyal and accepting the Bajoran-Cardassian orphans. He didn't accept them; he hated them. Them and Ziyal. More because Ziyal was his sister; she wasn't his sister. She was his father's daughter that was all. He was his father's son. A Gul. The Gul. Dukat of the Second Order, Central Command. With a mission and full intentions of preserving and restoring the Union to its rightful and former place within the galaxy. Supreme.

"Janice, I can't lie to you," he begged her. "Don't ask me to try. I am Anon. A warrior like Martok, Sisko, Shakaar, all of them! I can't change that. Not for you, or anyone. My father couldn't, and I can't. Nerys, Naprem, Janice, it doesn't matter. You are you, and we are…I am…" he took a breath, "Dukat."

"Okay…" Janice said slowly. "I still like your sauna…" Which she did. She just wondered about the ghastly smell that she probably shouldn't have said anything about. "I mean, it's not like I've never smelled anything dead or rotting before. I have. Just not fish…Cardassian fish. Human, I have. Bajoran…"

Anon groaned. "Never mind about the sauna!"

"Are you sure?"

"Yes, I'm sure!" he was in her face, exasperated and waiting for something; she didn't know what. His hand was soft and gentle cradling her chin, his voice remaining desperate. "I could crush your face like a piece of glass."

"Do you want to?"

"No, of course I don't want to. I simply know I can. And how many others can. I don't want you to get hurt. I love you."

"Good," Janice smiled. "Because I love you. Can't we just resume the program?"

No. It was a stupid idea. Window dressing behind which to hide and he wasn't hiding, not from her. "Janice, you have to learn to listen to me. When I tell you something, when I don't. Yes, Anon. That's it. Nothing else!"

She studied him. "Are you lying to me?"

"About what?" he insisted. "I want you to resign from the conference. I've told you that."

"Oh," her fingers picked at his tunic. "Well, actually, I was talking more about us. Pretty silly, huh?"

Them? He didn't know what she meant. "No, of course I'm not lying to you about us."

"And actually," she smiled, "you told me to wait to talk to Shakaar until after you had heard from your Council. Have you?"

She was hopeless. "Janice, I have been attacked. It could have been you! Why can't you even try to understand that?"

She supposed she could if she wanted to, which she didn't. Probably because she did understand more than she wanted to. "Oh, Anon," her fingers entwined through his cradling her cheek, "isn't this so much better than shooting phasers at one another?"

Anon stared, feeling her soft, wet kiss against the palm of his hand, along his fingertips. He swallowed hard. "Resume…resume program."

Thirty minutes later they were interrupted by Leeta's commercial warning of the dangers of overexposure as they bathed in a pool of tepid fish oil.

"What's she saying?" Anon insisted in perplexed annoyance with the sudden, blaring announcement. "Who is that?"

"Leeta, I think," Janice laughed. "I'm not sure. Something about finding a new and suitable program guaranteed to delight?"

"I've no doubt we will." An equally amused voice behind them commented. Anon whipped around to a Bajoran Special Forces officer staring down on them with vacant eyes in a too large skull. He did not know him; recognizing him only as the Security Task Leader assigned to their corridor the evening before. There were three others with him. Two with phaser rifles like him, the third with a recording camera.

"No, Anon, don't!" Janice stopped him from attacking before he hurt himself.

Hawk was not threatened, boldly moving up to crouch down at the edge of the pool.

"You have me," Anon breathed deeply. "Let her go."

There was genuine surprise in the Bajoran's laugh. "What makes you think we're interested in you?"

What? Anon frowned from him to the three others, settling on the camera.

"Look upon it as an insurance policy," Hawk offered.

Odo's cold disgust with the whole business was not surprising to Dax. Benjamin shared his viewpoint. So did Dax. Kira. The Chief. Julian, she knew was completely taken aback by the UFP's response and probably didn't know what to think. Worf, she still hadn't had a chance to ask him anything and wouldn't until they finally settled in their quarters around midnight. He was still hesitant with expressing himself even with her. Less certain if it was the Klingon in him that delayed his acting than it was the unexpected Klingon in Pfrann.

Who carried his fight all the way through to absolute victory, as any Klingon would.

Dax nodded in understanding Worf had been simply unprepared. Scattered, fleeting thoughts strayed to briefly wondering more about Worf's mention of Pfrann and a hand phaser. Where could he have gotten one? From someone who had dropped one? Rifles were the standard issue for all the security details right now. Special Forces and the station's personnel. Had Lange carried the phaser Kira had given her, contrary to Dax's presumption she wouldn't? Losing it in the confusion?

Aside from Dax still believed it was against Lange's nature to have carried the hand phaser, the nightgown Janice had worn to Quark's left little room to conceal a weapon. It had to be coincidence to Pfrann finding himself armed minutes later. Was Garak possibly the inadvertent supplier instead? Quark, an intentional one? Dax thought about the readings taken from Dukat's quarters. Residuals of phaser discharge and a security officer dead from a hand phaser pressed to the back of his neck. Had something else happened in those quarters she and the Chief overlooked? Damar or Dukat having taken care of matters themselves? Were the Legate and his representatives really as oblivious to their surroundings as they appeared to be?

Dax suddenly felt almost consoled by the annoying addition of the Cardassian Task Force. It narrowed the field considerably as far as who to look to for answers should any new questions arise concerning the Cardassian delegates directly. There was something odd about Dukat she just couldn't put her finger on. Pfrann also. Their youth possibly? In the Chief's words they were sitting around a table with little more than a group of surly brats telling the adults what to do. The sarcastic and disdainful Gul had nerve even if he didn't have his father's affected postures with his proposal of mutual acceptance. Dax highly doubted if the elder Dukat would have had the audacity.

"Yes, he would," Dax decided. Maybe not his son's ability to keep a straight face, but he would definitely have the gall to submit such an outlandish claim of heartfelt brotherhood with the Bajoran state, fully expecting it and him to be taken seriously.

"I'm missing something. What am I missing?" she drifted off to sleep thinking of the sentinel Tan who on one hand verbally supported unity among the Security Task Forces, and on the other set his squad apart. Unfortunately too far apart from the others to prevent Hawk from striking again while she and Worf slept.

"Are you too warm?" Anon asked Janice waiting quietly for him to finish pulling on his boots. She looked nervous, uncertain. He had never seen her look that way before.

"No, I'm fine." The smile she managed was weak, the light in her eyes faded and dull.

Anon sighed. It was difficult to be gentle with hate and anger boiling inside of him. He wanted to kill, not comfort anyone. His hand stroked her arm slowly; his voice soft and close to pleading. "I want us to be together right."

"We're not together right?"

"No, I think we are."

"Good." Her smile was stronger. "So do I. I really don't think they'll use the pictures, Anon. It's just a threat -- I do understand threats and the reasons why. But it just goes to show why we have to continue, not quit. They're afraid, Anon. They're only afraid. They're not evil or cruel, any more than you or I. A lot of people are afraid of change."

Somehow his voice stayed quiet. "Yes, they will use them. You heard him."

"Hawk," she nodded. "Yes, that was Hawk."

Her knowledge of Hawk was just another example of the contradictions surrounding her. "Janice, how could you know so much about Hawk and not understand what all of this means?"

She shrugged. "I'm not so sure what all there is to understand."

"He's Maquis! I can't believe we're alive!"

"Because he's Anar's brother," her hand patted his chest in reassurance. "He won't use the pictures, Anon, you'll see -- who will even care if he tries to?"

"Everyone!" he insisted. "The Bajoran and the Cardassian representatives? Everyone! Not about me, about you! Dukat? Ha! What else is news? That's not news. You are news!"

"Collusion," she grinned. "See? I really do understand. And is that really so wrong? I mean…" she kissed his cheek lightly, "you are the Cardassian representative. I am the Bajoran…"

"Stop that," he requested.

She laughed. "Anon, how can you have unity without collusion?"

He didn't know. He knew they, the galaxy cared. Would care and did care. It was ridiculous to even be arguing about it when he wanted her to quit, never mind some Bajoran Maquis terrorist calling himself Hawk. "The conference is over. Sisko can come to Cardassia with Shakaar. Terok Nor, they can keep. All of them. Whoever wants it; I don't!"

"We'll talk to Anar," she proposed. "I'm sure he can convince Hawk to agree to a cease fire long enough to at least listen to what we're all trying to accomplish."

"Anar?" Anon felt his stomach churn with new guilt, hearing himself brag to Anar how no one but he could protect her adequately. Hearing about this? His failure and Janice's embarrassment? It wouldn't be a wise Bajoran Town Elder who emerged from the sanctuary of his battle cruiser in the mood to talk to anyone. "No, we can't talk to Anar -- Sisko is looking for him!" he insisted to her puzzled look. "He thinks he is responsible for all of this. Quark's! Everything!"

That penetrated, and, no, Janice did not understand a word of what he was talking about. "Responsible? But that's ridiculous. Anar is the kindest, most gentle man I know."

"I know that!"

"Anar's only here to help. I realize we don't know where he is, but that's not because he ran away from anything -- "

"No, he didn't run away." Anon hugged her shoulders. "He's on the Tir helping Tan to find Hawk and his Maquis…"

"Maybe we should talk to Kira," Janice considered all of their options.

"What?" Anon straightened up.

"Anon," she submitted gently, "I respect that it's difficult for you to view Kira as an ally."

"Difficult?" he choked. "She is responsible for everything that has ever happened to my father; her, not him! Picking and prodding and poking at him for years. That is why he is insane. Interned in a Federation asylum for the rest of his life!"

"I don't know anything about that. I am sure once Kira understands she will gladly be a liaison between Anar and Captain Sisko. We'll talk to her right after tomorrow's session."


"Well, it's either Kira or we have to talk to Captain Sisko ourselves," she tapped her foot in firm and committed reminder. "Someone has to do something. This can't continue, Anon. That’s something else I know."

"Leave!" he assured. "Sisko is Federation! I am Cardassian, Anar is Maquis. Sisko is not going to listen to us or Anar or anyone. Two hundred people are dead, Janice. They are not going to blame Shakaar, Winn or Gowron. They are going to arrest you and Anar, and I am going to be sent back to Cardassia. That is the only thing that is going to happen. Ask my father! I'm telling you it's happened to him!"

"All right then we will ask him."

"Excuse me?" he stared at her.

"What he would do?" she offered. "If you were your father right now who would he talk to? Would it be Kira or Captain Sisko?"

"Kira!" he damned, finally. "Yes! He's trusted her and she has betrayed him countless times. What I have been saying to you!"

"That you resent her intrusions," Janice nodded. "Which you have every right to your feelings. But right now we need her help, Anon. We can't let the Federation arrest Anar simply because he's Maquis. He's innocent. Kira will never let that happen. I know that and I believe you know it also."

He knew a lot of things. One was that Anar was right. There was no way out, nor would there be. Not without a fight. "I want to kill them, Janice," he explained without apology. "If I kill them then everything will be all right."

"Six phaser rifles against a squad of Klingons?" she smiled.

"Yes," he nodded. "Exactly."

"Well," she kissed him again, "it wasn't practical for the colony and it isn't practical now."

Perhaps not. But it would definitely make him feel better. He took her hand, activating his communicator. "Come on. We can't stay here -- what?" he said when her cheeks flushed suddenly warm and pink. "What's the matter?"

"I was hoping we could go to mine?" she hinted. "Nothing against Pfrann or Tan or anyone else."

"Where it's private and not too hot," Anon's finger traced the perspiration on her forehead, cheeks and nose. "What are you going to do on Cardassia Prime? Where it's hot and dusty and the air glows yellow from dawn to dusk?"

"Perspire at lot?" she guessed.

"We're going to mine," Anon decided. "You are my wife. A man lives with his wife, in the same quarters as his wife. It would be the same aboard the Tir, at home on Cardassia. I'm not parading you, or hiding you. Are you ashamed of me?"

"No, of course I'm not ashamed of you -- Anon!" she slapped at him lovingly. "What a silly thing to say!"

"Just Human," his fingers pulled on her hair as he kissed her and they faded away to kiss, sleep and debate her surrendering her career, her mummy Delores and the survival of the colony to the sole protection and leadership of Anar and coming to live permanently on Cardassia Prime, just not occasionally as a visitor to her husband's home world; which she refused to do until Anar and his township was established as a recognized member of the Bajoran world.

"And," Janice's finger drilled into his chest. "the colony's safe from UFP and Cardassian sanctions just because they happen to be former Maquis. For goodness sake, Anon, Nadya is nine years old. Is the Federation and Cardassian councils going to order her arrest too? They are not. They're not ordering the arrest of anyone."

Anon moaned. "I said I would speak with the Council -- I said I would protect them from the UFP, Shakaar, Klingons, anyone. Offer them Cardassian citizenship if no one else wants them -- move them from their colony and reestablish them on one of ours -- Janice! You're coming with me to Cardassia. That is final."

"You're so sweet," Janice kissed him. "Though I really don't think Anar wants to move. I'm sure he wants to stay there; I know he does. There's no reason why he can't."

The age old argument. The reason the Maquis so quickly gained popularity and strength in the first place. No, Anon wasn't sweet. He was sullen. Sullen when he fell asleep. Sullen when he woke up, and sullen throughout the conference, it’s attendants all too busy and bothered by their own dark clouds to notice his.

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