Hello, here's the first few parts of a story I was inspired to write about my Cardassian captain and his assault cruiser. I'll likely update it in the future with some more bits about his selection of his senior officers, and more distantly maybe a mission or two. I hope you enjoy!
Captain Gorel Karn, currently of no starship, stepped out onto the patio of his parents' house in the suburbs of Lakarian City. The night was cool and clear, although he was sure that many of the other officers he'd served with would disagree. The humans would have found it warm and humid, the Andorians excessively hot, and the Vulcans a bit on the cool side. As for the Tellarites, he wasn't sure, although he did know they would have argued with whatever stance he took.
It was strange, but good, to be home again after so many years away. He'd been one of the first Cardassians to be accepted to Starfleet Academy when the Federation Council created their dual-citizenship program; he could afford no signs of weakness or divided loyalty. He had to be as perfect an officer as possible, to ensure that those who followed wouldn?t have to prove themselves in the same way. As a result, he'd allowed himself no visits home, nor even to Cardassian space; similarly, he'd only allowed himself a letter to his parents every few months. It was only now, after he'd been transferred away from his first command, that he had made the trip back while he waited for his next posting.
The party his parents had thrown was small, and only family had been invited, but he felt torn between relaxation at being with them and a sense of being out of place. It had been years, after all, and in Starfleet, if Cardassians were not exactly pariahs, they were not entirely welcome, either. His classmates had been raised on stories of the Dominion War as much as he had, and the Federation and the Union had not been friends even before that. He'd been met with anxiety, with arrogance, with pity, from many corners; the safest and best response had been to simply close himself off. It was most efficient, after all, to not be a Cardassian officer, but simply an officer.
"Ah, here you are."
Gorel turned, half-empty glass of kanar in hand, as his great-uncle stepped out to join him. The man wore his comfortable suit like a uniform, as well he might; Legate Eren Eskot had been one of the more senior Guls to make it through the chaos of the Dominion War with life and commission intact. That was likely due to his service in rear-echelon positions at the Bureau of Ships, as well as the revelation that he had been one of the low-level sources that supplied intelligence for the Cardassian resistance. In the years since, he had continued his patient rise through the Bureau, until today he was one of the more experienced legates in charge of designing and building Cardassia's fleet, reduced as it was.
"I'm sorry, Uncle, I just stepped out for a moment."
"That's quite alright, my boy, quite alright."
The elder man joined him at the railing, looking out. This particular district was on one of the hills near the city, and if the view it afforded was not great, it was good enough to see the distant towers and domes of the capital of the Cardassian Union.
"It does my heart good to see this view. There was a time when I was afraid Cardassia would never recover."
Gorel nodded. "It's even changed in just the few years I?ve been gone."
"Has it? I hadn't noticed. That's good, most of the Federation assistance organizations have been gone for that time, so that means we've been doing it on our own."
He gave a little moue, and his great-uncle chuckled.
"I bear the Federation no ill will, Gorel. They did what they had to do, and then they did what they didn't have to. They've done well by you - you may not be a Gul, but you're a Captain, and we?re all proud of you." He clapped the younger man's shoulder. "But still, it's better to see that we've recovered enough to do things without their help. It shows a real improvement."
The kanar Gorel sipped was good. He?d tried the replicated version, but it never quite tasted right, even if the molecules were supposed to be the same. Real kanar was uncommon and expensive in the Federation, still tainted as it was with bad memories, so instead he'd switched to Saurian brandy on those rare occasions he'd felt a desire for alcohol.
"So now that you've gotten some experience with Starfleet engineering, maybe you'd like to come by my officer at the Bureau? I'd love to show you what we?re working on and get your opinions."
"I appreciate the offer, Uncle, but I'm not sure how much I can really add. I'm no shipwright."
"Nonsense, practical experience is what we need. I don't need someone to lay out a keel or calculate the strength of structural spars, I need someone who's been out there, who knows what works and what doesn't. Plus, I think you might be underestimating yourself; from what I've heard you and your crew did a serious field refit on your last command."
Something about that tickled at Gorel's instincts. He began to wonder - was this his Great-Uncle Eskot inviting him for a little tour of the office, or was the Legate Eskot of the Cardassian Self-Defense Force's Bureau of Ships asking Starfleet Captain (Engineering) Karn to consult on a new design? He nodded slowly.
"Alright, Uncle, I'd be happy to come by."
"Wonderful, my boy! I'll check with my aide and have them contact you. I think you?ll be very interested in what I have to show you."
Last edited by thesciencer; 03-19-2013 at 01:00 AM.