SIM:Zehn - Dishonourable Enemies and Honourable Friends
On the eve of the Klingon Invasions of 2389, Kaedyn Zehn struggles with his feelings about the Empire and remembers time when his previous hosts had met with Klingon operatives
- Kaedyn Zehn
- Reigan Zehn - Zehn's sixth host
- Jilenna Zehn - Zehn's seventh host
- Past Lives
This SIM highlights the conflict that Kaedyn feels with regard to the Klingons. An earlier host, Reigan, experienced the last Klingon war while Jilenna fought side-by-side Klingons in the Dominion War.
- The welcoming of the senior officers had been a brief, somewhat strange event. Kaedyn had served under Captain Jaxx as a junior officer but had had very little contact with him beyond the crazy days on the Resolution where everyone seemed to always end up in the small sickbay. Commander Kells had been reassigned before he had a chance to meet the crew and Captain Avatar was a name he had heard but had never met him.::
- As the four command officers left, the remaining senior had staff milled around for a while. Under other circumstances he would have liked to stayed and perhaps chatted with the colleagues he still barely knew but the troubling reports from the Klingon Empire, the situation with Eliaan and his own fatigue kept him from feeling sociable.::
- As the turbolift descended, he found his thoughts focusing squarely on the Klingon border. There was the obvious concern that the intelligence department was unable to provide much in the way of actual intelligence about the possible Klingon aggression but there was also something more. He worried what would happen if peace fell apart again.::
~~Flashback~~ ((USS Indomitable - Stardate 237207.23))
- Lieutenant Commander Reigan Zehn stood in the doorway of the brig and wondered how it had come to this. For decades, the Federation and the Klingon Empire had remained allies and when they couldn't be allies, they remained at peace. Zehn was old enough to remember the days before the Khitomer Accords, when the two powers were constantly on the brink of all out war and he was not happy to see it return.::
- The war-like elements in the Empire had not turned their attention on the Federation but on the Cardassian Union. Their incorrect belief that the Cardassian government had been replaced by the Founders was little more than an excuse to return to their war-like ways. With the Federation's refusal to support the invasion, they had turned on their allies too.::
- And so he now stared at a Klingon prisoner as he prowled back and forth in one of Reigan's holding cells. He looked like a cage animal and it was hard for Regian not to think of him in such terms. The only survivor from a Bird-of-Prey that had decloaked and attacked the Indomitable without warning or provocation, the warrior growled as he spotted the Trill.::
Jadok: What is the meaning of this? Release me!
- The security officer stepped into the room and spoke in a quiet, controlled manner.::
(Reigan) Zehn: It is very simple, Lieutenant Jadok. You tried to destroy my ship and you failed. So now you are my prisoner. Understand or do you want me to explain it again?
Jadok: You Trill p'tahk! I would cut your tongue out if you were man enough to face me in battle...
- The Trill frowned.::
(Reigan) Zehn: Save the wounded Klingon nonsense for someone who gives a damn. You are a prisoner of war, you will be treated with all the respect and fairness that Federation and Inter-galactic law accords you.
- The Klingon spat on the floor of his cell and punched the security forcefield that held him in.::
Jadok: Where are the rest of my crew?
(Reigan) Zehn: Dead.
- Klingons, like Trill, had a different view of death than most other humanoid species. The psychology of Klingons meant they more readily accepted death and many had come to attach and almost obsessive mysticism to it. The Klingon shook his head.::
Jadok: They died in battle as warriors... only I have the dishonour of being taken prisoner.
(Reigan) Zehn: They died attacking a starship with civilians onboard. Where is the honour in murdering children?
- The Klingon sneered and as he did so, Reigan could feel his anger boiling below his calm, Starfleet professionalism.::
Jadok: Starfleet places their children in battle, not us.
(Reigan) Zehn: This is a science vessel...
- A dark look crossed the Klingon's face and he spoke a low growl.::
Jadok: You are all children and scientists. That is why one day the Klingon Empire will drown you in your own blood.
(Reigan) Zehn: Didn't you also say that to the Cardassians?
- The Klingon punched the forcefield again.::
Jadok: Make your quips, Trill. You are weak and you will be destroyed
- For a moment, Reigan considered letting the forcefield down and demonstrate his weakness. He was a strong, fit and well-trained Starfleet officer. He was confident in his ability to beat this man in a fight. The part of him that was once Janel Zehn wanted more than anything to make him eat his words but it was balanced by the quiet, calming influence of Calla Zehn. For the Klingon, a fight would be enjoyable. The true way to make him suffer would be to leave him in his cell.::
(Regian) Zehn: Enjoy your incarceration... and your dishonour.
- A string of Klingon expletives followed him as he left the room.::
- The last war between the Klingons and the Federation had been a short but violent struggle from the first assault on Deep Space 9 until the end of hostilities. Kaedyn knew that if it were to come, SB118 would be at the front line and when the Empire turned it's mind to war, the Klingons became a completely different people.::
- He felt the past anger towards the Klingon's grow. They always had it in them, he mused. It was simply their nature. They were animals, occasionally domesticated but bound to break the leash now and then.::
- On the other hand, he had known some Klingons who weren't like that. He shook his head and leaned against the turbolift wall. When he was tired or stressed he found it harder to keep the memories of his past hosts seperate in his head. Reigan had developed a grudging respect for Klingons but he never liked them much. Jilenna, on the other hand, genuinely believed them to be the best allies the Federation had. She saw the honour in them that Reigan never could.::
((Starfleet Long Range Sensor Array - PX-479: 2375))
- It was the waiting that was the hardest for Lieutenant Jilenna Zehn. When the enemy came, when danger was upon them the adrenaline pushed her forward but when sitting around waiting she found time seemed to stop. The imaginatively named PX-479, the planet on which her unit had been assigned, had been just another anonymous rock near the Cardassian border before the war but now it was the location of a large sensor array that was used to monitor the border.::
- The war had taken a turn for the worse in recent months. The Dominion had retaken their lost territory in the Second Battle of Chin'Toka. This had been a tremendous blow for the war effort and, perhaps just as importantly, morale in both fleets. For those stuck defending PX-479, it felt as if the war was being lost and they were unable to participate. For Jilenna too, the battle had been a major turning point. Reigan had died on Indomitable and she had been Joined with the Zehn symbiont only two months when she arrived on the planet.::
- Fifty-four days into their ninety day rotation defending the array from constant Jem'Hadar assaults had taken their toll on her squad. She tried her best to keep spirits up since in a squad of marines, a Trill who had a psychologist as a former host was the closest thing they had to a counsellor. While she was at least able to take some comfort in the fact that she was helping, even just a little, she longed to leave the planet.::
- As she prepared for her fifty-fourth daily patrol of the perimeter, she focused on the fact the knowledge that once she was complete she was one day closer to leaving. In the back of her mind, she also told herself it could be worse. The Klingon detachment had already been there for more than 90 days. The Empire didn't have the same regulations as Starfleet for their men's mental health.::
- Her counterpart from the KDF arrived with his usual promptness.::
Boraq: Lieutenant Zehn
- He was handsome, in a Klingon sort of way, and she thought that perhaps prior to joining, she would have been attracted to him. He seemed so much younger than her now. Still, he was different from the other Klingons she had known. He was still a fierce warrior and a diligent officer but he also had a brooding, mystery to him.::
(Jilenna) Zehn: Lieutenant Boraq
- They began their standard perimeter patrol, as they had done fifty-four times before. Sensor scramblers, transport inhibitors and various other defensive technology meant that visual recon was still a key function. Teams of two were criss-crossing the planet around the array as they did every day.::
(Jilenna) Zehn: So, where to today Lieutenant?
Boraq: We have a standard route, Lieutenant. I do not think we should deviate from it.
(Jilenna) Zehn: ::smirking:: Of course.
Boraq: You are making fun, aren't you?
(Jilenna) Zehn: Afraid so.
- The Klingon shook his head and laughed quietly. Gripping his weapon, he began the standard patrol and Jilenna followed behind him.::
Boraq: You are not what I imagined a Starfleet marine to be like.
(Jilenna) Zehn: I used to be a more... normal marine.
Boraq: Before your Joining?
- She nodded and they walked in silence for a long time.::
Boraq: What is it like? Dying, I mean.
- Jilenna laughed a little. It was a question that she had been asked many times. For unjoined humanoids, the memories of death carried by the Symbiont overed a glimpse of something that most people knew nothing about.
(Jilenna) Zehn: It is... strange. You never get used to it and there's no way to prepare yourself for it. Especially for my last host, dying in war, it feels like such a waste.
Boraq: Your previous host died in battle, if he were Klingon he'd be in Sto'Vo'Kor now.
(Jilenna) Zehn: That may be true but I'm sure he'd rather be alive.
- The continued in silence for another long time. She glanced up at him and saw a troubled look on his face.::
(Jilenna) Zehn: What's up?
Boraq: To die in battle, it is something I am supposed to hope for and look foward to.
- She smiled softly at this Klingon warrior, admitting something that he could never admit to his own people.::
(Jilenna) Zehn: Don't worry, Lieutenant. I have no intention of dying on this damned planet and I have no intention of allowing you to die. I will look after you.
- The thought of a the Trill woman protecting the large Klingon towering over her would appear amusing to anyone who overheard their conversation..::
Boraq: And I you
(Jilenna) Zehn: Then we have nothing to worry about, do we?
EMH: =/\= Sickbay to Lieutenant Zehn =/\=
- Kaedyn was immediately brought back to the present with the interruption.::
Zehn: Go ahead.
EMH: =/\= Lieutenant Deron is awake =/\=
- He breathed a sigh of relief, the knot of tension in his gut slackening ever so slightly.::
Zehn: On my way...