- Not now, Odo. - We have to talk.
- lt'll have to wait. - lt can't wait.
Make it fast. l have business to attend to.
You remember that Subytt freighter we were discussing?
The one you claimed was smuggling defective isolinear rods to Bajor?
- What about it? - l conducted a little investigation.
Do you know what l discovered?
That l was telling the truth.
That's right. l arrested the first officer and two of the crew.
Congratulations. l knew you could do it.
lf you don't mind, l am needed upstairs.
Hold on. l'm not finished with you.
Really, Odo? Sometimes l think there's no pleasing you.
l help you crack a smuggling ring
and yet you still treat me like the enemy.
You are the enemy.
Then how do you explain my helping you?
That's just it.
- l can't explain it. - lt's simple, really.
We've been at each others' throats long enough.
- lt's time we called a truce. - Truce? You must be joking.
Ask the Subytt officer if l'm joking. You and l are going to be friends.
You're up to something.
- Why would you say that? - You're always up to something.
This is going to take time, but eventually you'll learn to trust me.
That'll be the day.
l don't think l can remember Odo ever looking so...perplexed.
He's not alone. Those smugglers were a potential source of great profit.
Must l quote you the 76th Rule of Acquisition?
''Every once in a while, declare peace.
''lt confuses the hell out of your enemies.''
Hi, Quark. How are your lobes?
Tingling at the sight of you.
What'll it be? Another Black Hole?
l don't have time. My ship's about to pull out.
Do you know of anyone going to Bajor?
Ships go there all the time. Why?
l promised someone l'd deliver this for them.
l won't get there this trip.
- lt's an earring. - l know it's an earring.
lt was given to me by a worker on Cardassia lV.
Are you saying a Cardassian gave you a Bajoran earring?
He asked me to take it to Bajor.
Said whoever l showed it to would understand.
- He said that? - This is a Bajoran station, isn't it?
There must be someone here who would know what to do with it.
- There is. - Who?
Come in.
- Surprise. - What do you want?
- l wanted to see your quarters. - ls that the only reason for your visit?
You don't entertain much, do you?
l entertain a lot, just not you.
Let me guess. The bedroom.
You take one step in here and it'll be your last.
- lt could be worth it. - You've got five seconds.
Aren't you going to offer me a beverage?
- Can't we at least sit down? - Three, two, one.
l brought you something.
- Where did you get that? - ls it valuable?
Where did you get it?
From a freighter captain. She got it from a Cardassian.
- Where? - Cardassia lV.
That's what she told me, anyway.
Consider it a gift.
Dad, wait up.
- You got a minute? - For you, absolutely.
- l've got great news. - You passed your algebra test.
- You hit Bob Gibson's fast ball. - Better.
Better than hitting a fast ball?
Remember that Bajoran girl l told you about? Laira?
l decided to ask her out.
Now you've come to the old man
for advice on what to say.
You can't be afraid of rejection.
l already asked her out. She said yes.
Do you have any ideas on what we could do?
l was thinking of taking her to the holosuites.
l don't think so.
You're too young to take a girl to the holosuites.
How about our quarters?
- No, no quarters. - We're just going to talk.
- Talk in public. - lt's not the same.
You want to talk? Take her upstairs.
You can watch the ships go through the wormhole.
- That's boring. - Since when?
- Since l started dating. - This is your first date.
l don't want it to be my last.
- l need to speak with you. - One moment, Major.
l can see you're not ready to have this conversation.
l'll come up with a few ideas of my own. Don't worry about it.
- Who's worried? - Commander?
Join me, Major.
One raktajino with a jacarine peel.
Nothing for me.
One icoberry torte.
So, Major, what can l do for you?
- l need to borrow a runabout. - For what?
You don't want to ask me that.
- Too late. l already asked. - You don't want to know the answer.
l can't loan you a runabout without knowing where you'll take it.
To Cardassia lV to rescue a Bajoran prisoner of war.
You're right. l wish you hadn't told me.
This earring was recently smuggled off the planet.
- That is the insignia of Li Nalas. - The resistance leader?
The greatest we ever had. His victory over Gul Zarale...
- Wasn't he reported killed in action? - His body was never found.
l wouldn't ask this if there was any other way to rescue Li.
Bajoran ships just don't have the defensive capabilities
to get me in and out of Cardassian territory.
- You're sure this is genuine? - There's dermal residue on the back.
Analysis matched it to Li's DNA records. lt's genuine.
Have you told the provisional government?
l contacted three ministers. Their response was exactly what l expected.
They're unwilling to risk going to war with Cardassia
over an earring.
- l can't say l blame them. - Commander,
the provisional government is made up of political opportunists
too busy fighting to care what happens to Bajor.
Since the loss of the Kai the situation has got worse.
There's factional fighting in several districts,
religious riots throughout the south.
Bajor needs a leader, someone the people will listen to and trust.
- You think Li Nalas is that leader? - l know he is.
- O'Brien to Sisko. - Go ahead, Chief.
You and Odo had better join me in the habitat ring. Level 13, section 4.
- There's something you should see. - We'll be right there.
Do l get the runabout?
l'll have to think it over.
l was on my way to do some repair work on the field modulators
when l noticed this.
This is the emblem of the Alliance for Global Unity.
They call themselves ''The Circle''.
Why mess up our station?
They're an extremist faction who believe in Bajor for the Bajorans.
All other species should be expelled from the planet.
This emblem has appeared all over Bajor.
But it's the first time l've seen it here.
lnform me immediately if this appears anyplace else on the station.
lf they think signs will get rid of us, they've got another think coming.
They're trying to show us that we're vulnerable.
l wouldn't be overly concerned. This is a low-security area.
As of now, there are no low-security areas on this station.
- You wanted to see me, Benjamin? - Yes. Have a seat.
ls this going to be about baseball?
- Not this time. - Good.
l thought you enjoyed talking about baseball.
Curzon enjoyed it, but not as much as he led you to believe.
- What's on your mind, Benjamin? - l've been thinking about our mission.
l look at the turmoil on Bajor.
Everything we fought for is starting to unravel.
l told you this would be a tough assignment.
l didn't realise it would be this tough.
What if l knew someone who could bring stability to Bajor?
Someone who could unite the factions.
l'd say give Kira the runabout.
How do you know about Kira wanting a runabout?
l promised not to tell.
Supposing l do help and she does rescue Li Nalas.
What do we say to the Cardassians?
The question is: what do they say to us?
They swore they released all their Bajoran prisoners.
- Chief, Major Kira needs a runabout. - So she's going to Cardassia lV?
- ls there anyone she didn't tell? - l doubt she mentioned it to Quark.
As far as Quark's concerned,
she's going to Lamenda Prime for mineral samples.
Can we prevent the Cardassian sensors from detecting the runabout?
l could modulate the engine's power emissions
and install buffers around the emitter coil.
They'll think they're picking up a Lissepian transport.
l see you've already given this a bit of thought.
l suppose l have.
Come in.
Commander, Chief. l was getting ready to leave.
l just stopped by to wish you luck.
And to tell you that Chief O'Brien
will be accompanying you on your mission.
l don't think that's a good idea.
Taking a Federation officer could cause complications for you.
l'll risk that.
You're an excellent pilot, Major, but Mr O'Brien is better.
And l want to make sure that l get my runabout back in one piece.
l appreciate the offer, but this is a Bajoran problem.
l don't agree.
The truth is l need Li Nalas back on Bajor as much as you do.
l've seen how the Cardassians treat their prisoners.
No one should suffer like that.
lf they get their hands on us, we'll be the ones suffering.
They'll have to catch us first.
l suppose l could use the company.
- You've got the controls, Chief. - Right.
Before we go, there's one thing we need to clear up.
This mission can end two ways:
we bring back Li Nalas or we don't come back at all.
- Then take us out of here, Mr O'Brien. - lnitialising launch sequence.
How much longer till we reach Cardassia lV?
l estimate another 30 minutes.
- Hold on. We're being scanned. - Can you get a fix on the source?
lts position is holding steady at bearing 219, mark 23.
lt must be a navigational control post. Probably a routine scan.
- We're being hailed. - Then again, we could be in trouble.
They're repeating the hail.
We're on the edge of their scanner range, out of visual contact.
l say we try and bluff them.
Opening a channel.
This is Cardassian navigational control post 24. ldentify yourself.
This is the Lissepian transport Martuk.
According to our scan, your subspace field emitters are malfunctioning.
The field buffers must be distorting our power signature.
We're having problems with our phase modulators.
Do you require assistance? We can dispatch a ship.
They want to help us?
Your offer is most appreciated, post 24, but unnecessary.
Are you certain? Your power signature is still fluctuating.
He's getting suspicious.
l believe we can correct the problem on our own.
Besides, Gul Marayn is waiting to receive my shipment of rulot seeds.
Any delay could ruin the entire crop, not to mention the Gul's mood.
Understood. You can put in for repairs after delivery.
My plan exactly.
He's cut off their transmission.
Tell me, Major, who is this Gul Marayn?
Don't ask me. l just made him up.
We're in synchronous orbit above the Hutet labour camp.
l've limited the bio-scans to detect only Bajoran life forms.
Hold on. We're getting multiple readings.
There must be a dozen Bajoran prisoners down there.
Can we beam up more than two at a time?
l'm afraid not. When we beam the first two up, all hell will break loose.
And there's no way of guaranteeing that Li will be one of the first two.
What's security like?
The compound is surrounded by a Cardassian force field.
We have to land. lt's our only chance of getting them all out.
l'll find us a secluded place to put down.
Back to work.
- How do l look? - No Cardassian could resist you.
- l hope you're right. - So do l.
- Halt! - We want to see the prefect.
- What for? - She has an appointment with him.
l used to be stationed on Bajor.
Then you know why the prefect doesn't want to be kept waiting.
- What's this all about? - l'm not quite sure.
- What would an appointment cost me? - More than you could afford.
- Two strips of latinum, she's all yours. - He wouldn't know what to do.
- She needs disciplining. - From a boy like you?
l don't think you're capable of it.
Step back. l want to examine what l'm paying for.
But no sampling the merchandise till the sale's complete.
Come here.
Show me why you're worth two strips of gold-pressed latinum.
All right.
- Li Nalas! - Who are you?
- We've come to get you out of here. - The earring. You got it?
- My earring was lost. - l had it smuggled back to Bajor.
l suggest you keep this discussion for later.
We have a ship waiting.
We'll never make it at this rate.
Get Li back to Bajor. Four of us will hold them off.
- l won't allow it. - We did this for you.
- Just get him back safely. - You have my word.
- Come on. - Go!
Come on.
- Ready to launch, Major. - Not yet. The others might make it.
Standing by.
Two Galor-class warships entering orbit.
They should be overhead in 1 minute, 45 seconds.
Major, you can't leave those men behind.
1 minute, 30 seconds. lf we don't leave now, we never will.
- Take us home, Chief. - Yes, sir.
- Careful. He took a phaser hit. - Easy. l have you.
These people have been prisoners for ten years. They need medical attention.
First let's look at this wound.
- Bashir to Dax. - Go ahead.
A patient needs emergency treatment. Beam us to the infirmary.
Stand by.
- Commander, l need to talk... - Major, l'm glad you could join us.
l'm sorry.
- l didn't know you were busy. - Apparently not.
- l'll wait outside. - Hold on, Major.
There's something l want you to hear. Go ahead, Dukat.
Major, l have just informed Commander Sisko
that the Cardassian high command has issued a formal apology
- to the people of Bajor. - An apology?
We had no idea that Bajoran prisoners were still being held on Cardassia lV.
Such detentions are a direct violation
of supreme directive 2645.
And l assure you
the camp prefect will be chastised accordingly.
- The prisoners that were left behind? - They are already en route to Bajor.
- l look forward to their safe return. - l'm sure you do.
And l hope that our quick response to this unfortunate situation
will prove once and for all that Cardassia is no longer your enemy.
- Commander? - l'm as surprised as you are.
There's got to be a reason why they're being so accommodating.
l'm sure there is. But until we figure out their motives,
let's just be grateful that the prisoners are safe.
Congratulations on the success of your mission, Major.
That should do it. How do you feel?
- Better. - Good.
Your wound wasn't that serious. You've probably had worse.
Actually, this one was bad enough.
l've read all about your battle with Gul Zarale.
- That was a long time ago. - l consider myself a history buff.
The campaigns you led against the Cardassians...
Doctor, l think that you'll find others enjoy talking about those days
- far more than l do. - Of course.
l understand completely.
- Amazing. - What is?
Being here. l used to work in one of this station's ore processing plants.
You'll find that things have changed considerably.
A transport carrying Minister Jaro has just arrived from Bajor.
Major, you should have the honour of welcoming him aboard.
Thank you, Commander.
lf you're hungry, the Replimat has some passable Bajoran food.
Actually, l'm a bit tired.
- l'd like to see my quarters. - Of course.
lt appears you've been recognised.
- Minister Jaro. - Major. Where is he?
- On the Promenade. - And he's all right?
- Considering what he's been through. - Li Nalas alive.
Who would have imagined? The Prophets were kind to you today.
They were kind to all of us.
Your adventure made you enemies in the Chamber of Ministers.
All l did was risk my life.
What you did today, Major, was declare war on Cardassia.
- Thankfully they declined the invitation. - l'd do it again to bring Li Nalas home.
The next time you disobey orders
will mean the end of your military career.
As a private citizen,
l want to thank you for what you've done this day.
- That's good to hear. - Now take me to see Li Nalas.
Move it back, please. No pushing.
l'm sorry about this, Commander.
l don't think they're going to leave until you say a few words.
lf that's what it takes.
lt's good to be free.
lt's good to know that, after all our years of struggle,
- Bajor is finally free. - Yes, it is good to be free.
- lt really is you, isn't it? - Li Nalas.
l'm Minister Jaro Essa. l'm delighted to welcome you home.
- lt is a pleasure to be here. - May l address the crowd?
A politician can't give up an opportunity like this.
You go right ahead.
Fellow Bajorans, l have only one thing to ask you.
Never forget this moment.
One day your children will ask you what it was like
the day Li Nalas returned to Bajor.
l hope you'll find these quarters satisfactory.
l just spent ten years in a Cardassian labour camp.
l'm just grateful for a moment's privacy.
Enjoy it while you can.
Judging from the crowd, a moment may be all you get.
l thought they would have forgotten me by now.
lt appears you were wrong.
This morning, l was a slave.
Tonight, l am a hero.
lt must seem a little overwhelming.
What is overwhelming, Commander,
is knowing that something l have waited for my whole life
has finally happened.
The Cardassians are gone.
We won.
You've been there recently.
What's it like, a free Bajor?
l think you'll be pleased, for the most part.
- For the most part? - Bajor lacks strong leadership.
So that's what Major Kira meant.
On the runabout, she told me that my return
would bring stability to Bajor.
She's right. Bajor could use your help and frankly so could l.
But before you go off saving Bajor, you could use a good night's sleep.
lt sounds like l'm going to need it.
One for you and six for me.
One for you and six for me.
One for you and six for me. Would you stop looking so glum?
Payday is supposed to be a time of joy.
l know, brother, but every week it's the same thing.
Six for you and only one for me. lt's not fair!
- You're right. - l am?
Yes. lt's not fair.
- lt's not? - Absolutely not.
One for you and... for me.
One for you and... for me. ls that better?
Where are you going?
To bed, to dream of an equal share of profits.
Dream on.
One for you...
...and seven for me.
What is it now?
Quark! Hold still.
Doctor? Will there be a scar?
- l said hold still. - Does that mean yes?
No. This dermal regenerator should repair damaged tissue
as well as prevent scarring. Unless, of course,
you don't hold still.
- Did you recognise your assailants? - They were wearing masks.
- They didn't say anything? - They just branded me and left.
The Promenade was deserted. No one saw them enter or leave.
l want all security personnel put on full alert.
- l've already seen to it. - Who was responsible for this?
An extremist group from Bajor who call themselves the Circle.
- Bajorans did this? - l'm afraid so.
But why?
Their goal is to rid Bajor of all non-Bajorans.
Hasn't the provisional government tried to stop them?
The Circle is more organised than the government.
lt had better get organised because l will sue them for compensation.
Not now, Quark.
People are impatient with the government, so they turn to the Circle.
We need someone to speak out,
someone the people will listen to.
There. That should do it.
- How do l look? - As...handsome as ever.
- Jake, what are you doing up? - l couldn't sleep.
How was your date? lt was tonight, wasn't it?
lt was supposed to be. She couldn't make it.
lt happens.
She said her father wouldn't let her go out with me.
Because l'm not a Bajoran.
That's not much of a reason.
Oh, Jake.
There are some things happening on Bajor.
Troubling things.
l'm sorry you've become a victim of them.
You don't deserve it. Nobody does.
- Time for bed, OK? - OK.
Night, Dad.
There's a call for you from the Tygarian freighter docked on upper pylon two.
Put it through.
Commander Sisko, l am Romah Doek, executive officer of the Nanut.
We were preparing to depart the station
when we discovered a Bajoran trying to stow away on our ship.
l was hoping you would know what to do with him.
The Nanut isn't scheduled to return for two years.
- l planned on staying much longer. - l don't follow.
Commander, l'm going to tell you a story.
- You may even believe it. - l'm listening.
During the occupation, l was a member of a minor resistance cell.
One day, in the mountains surrounding the Sahving Valley,
we were ambushed by Cardassians. Only three of us escaped.
We hid in the hills for two days. Finally, we were forced into the valley.
We made our way to a ridge overlooking a small lake.
l was the only one with a phaser
so l went on ahead to scout for the enemy.
Halfway down the embankment, l slipped,
went sprawling down to the lake as a Cardassian emerged from the water.
He must have finished bathing. He stood there, frozen in surprise,
dressed only in his underwear, shivering in the cold.
l lay there, too stunned to move.
lt was only when he reached for a phaser rifle
lying on a nearby rock
that l realised l was holding my own phaser, and l shot him.
His body fell on top of me. That's how my companions found us.
One of them recognized him as Gul Zarale,
responsible for the massacre of half a dozen Bajoran villages.
l tried to tell them what had happened,
but they were convinced that l had killed Zarale
in some kind of savage struggle,
which is what they insisted on telling every Bajoran we met.
No matter how hard l denied it, the story spread
until it seemed all of Bajor had heard it.
Every victory won by the resistance, was attributed to my leadership.
Stories of my brilliance, my daring, my courage
grew more and more unbelievable, yet people insisted on believing them.
My reputation followed me to the camp,
where my mere presence inspired my fellow prisoners.
And l had done nothing
but shoot an unarmed Cardassian in his underwear.
l'll never forget the look on his face when he died.
He was so...embarrassed.
So you see, Commander, l have done what Bajor needed me to do.
l have allowed myself to be a slave to my reputation all of these years.
And now it is enough.
They still need you.
But l am not the man that they think l am.
Perhaps not. But Bajor doesn't need a man.
lt needs a symbol and that's what you are.
No one's asking you to kill a hundred Cardassians with your bare hands.
l saw you in front of the crowd on the Promenade.
They look at you and they see strength
and honour and decency.
They look at you and see the best in themselves.
But it's all based on a lie.
No. lt's based on a legend.
And legends are as powerful as any truth.
Bajor still needs that legend.
lt needs you.
The transport is ready for departure.
Opening mooring clamps on docking bay 6.
- Commander. - Minister Jaro. Li.
Navarch Li, as of yesterday's assembly vote.
Navarch. There's never been one before.
Any existing title was inadequate so they created a new one for me.
l hear that thousands greeted your ship when it arrived on Bajor.
lt was quite a celebration. l wish l could have stayed longer.
The Navarch needed to return to his new post.
He's been made Bajoran liaison officer to Deep Space 9.
- l already have a liaison officer. - Not any more.
Major Kira is no longer assigned to this post.
She's been recalled to Bajor.

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