We spent three hours cuddled together on the couch in my new quarters. His skin- so cool, dry, and scaly- felt wonderful against my own, which was warm with a mild fever. My immune system wasn’t what it had been when I was in my early thirties and traveling usually meant a minimum of a week of sickness for me now. It seemed this trip would be no exception.
Aaaand back to Dukat again.
Just a rough sketch of one of the more powerful and sad scenes of the fic I wrote today (Descent Into Madness. It’s on my DS9fics blog)
As I climbed through the rubble, I passed things I would have given anything to have never seen. My children, all of my children… “Skrain!” Taselle’s voice still called to me, but it was beginning to falter. Where was she?
“Taselle! I can’t find you!” I called, and then waited. “Taselle?” I called again, unsure if she’d heard me.
I shouldn’t have been surprised to find that that the dining hall in Dukat’s house was bigger than Quark’s entire bar, but I couldn’t help but stare in awe as I entered. Dukat hadn’t come down yet, he’d punched a wall and muttered something about changing for dinner before disappearing out of the room. I had been extremely thankful to find an outfit that seemed to be made of some kind of rust-orange silk.
Dukat was far less intimidating here with his family. Within moments of entering the room where his children were playing and studying he had wound up on the floor playing with his youngest, the twins. I stood just inside the door, leaning against the wall, watching them.
Eventually he remembered that I was there and composed himself. “I suppose you find all this very boring,” he remarked once he was standing again. I shook my head, no.
I woke to find myself clinging to my teddy bear, and for a few precious moments I thought that it had all been some crazy dream. That was until I realized that I was not in my own bed. I sat up in a flash and looked around, groaning as I realized that I was indeed in the small room I’d been assigned on Gul Dukat’s ship.
“It really happened, then,” I whispered to myself, burying my head in the teddy bear I still held tight in my arms. But something wasn’t right. How did I suddenly have Koukalaka?
Cardassian clothing is not comfortable, this needs to be said before all else. It’s made of some extremely scratchy wool that tempted me to remain in my underwear rather than wear it. I hoped that less offensive fabrics would be available on Cardassia Prime, but I doubted it.
I spent much of the trip staring at the ceiling while I tried to wrap my mind around the idea that my friends were all dead. Chief O’Brien, Dax, Garak- oh Garak! I couldn’t stop the tears from welling. I slumped over the small table that was fixed to the floor next to the replicator and sobbed. I never told him how I felt. Garak…
I awoke with a start. The station shuddered violently and I slid almost to the edge of my bed. “Computer!” I commanded, “Lights!” But there was no response. I got up, and stumbled into a bulkhead as the station shuddered violently again. For a moment, I could feel the gravity weakening, and I grabbed onto the bulkhead I’d slammed into for support. What the devil is going on? I wondered.
Julian was not eager to leave the cell. Knowing Dukat was involved made him especially wary of everything. So when the containment field dropped, he was shackled and then literally dragged from the cell, he knew whatever he faced wouldn’t be good.
It was unlike any pain I’d ever experienced. It was exquisite, the way it made my skin crawl. The Cardassian doctor had injected me with something that felt like acid in my veins. Before I could react, I was sitting in a chair with my arms bound behind me, around the back of the chair.