Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Outliers - A Deep Space Nine Celebration, Part 1

Benjamin Sisko
(first appeared in "Emissary," first season)
Jake-O!  Let me just say, as I'm sure everyone else you'll be interviewing will be far too professional, not to mention far less personally attached, how proud I am that you're doing this.  Only, don't let go of your stories.  You show real promise.

Now, where was I before coming to Deep Space Nine?  You know as well as I do, but I suppose in keeping with the spirit of this exercise, I should share something that's more than being a Starfleet officer, more than being a father.  What was Benjamin Sisko, the man, doing?

I suppose the only answer to that is the very one I've been considering these past few years, how someone picks up the pieces of a broken life without themselves falling apart.  

More than once, I thought of cashing it all in.  My father, your grandfather, was at the time retired from running his restaurant.  Perhaps you didn't know that.  He still cooked regularly enough for the family, of course, but it had been a long time since he had opened the doors of his own establishment.  I thought about taking up the family business.  We beamed there so regularly, just as I had done in my Academy days, that it was as if I had made the decision already.  And yet I could never bring myself to do so.

I kept thinking, what would my son think of me?  These were in the days where I still wondered, does Jake hold my career against me?  Does he blame me for the death of his mother?  Does he blame the uniform?  And I wondered the same things.  Did I blame myself, did I blame the uniform?

That was why I threw myself into building things.  I helped cultivate at least a dozen new starship designs.  The Defiant was a particular pet project, although I never let you see it.  I could never bring myself to do that, either.  What we were both experiencing was still so raw.  And yet it was my own way of processing Wolf 359, and it was exactly as the Prophets would later help me realize.  I continued to live in that moment, not only the obvious, the death of your mother, but calculating new battle strategies against the Borg. 

When I was first approached with the Bajor assignment, I was optimistic.  It was a chance to get out of my own head, something I had not truly allowed myself to do for two years.  I guess I saw the effects of the Occupation as very similar to what the Borg had done to me, to us, a scar that looked as if it would be permanent.  I confess that I never gave the realities of the assignment any thought, because reality had not been kind to me.  I took out all my frustrations of those realities on a man who had nothing to do with them.  I see that now.

So, where was I before Deep Space Nine?  I suspect you've always known, and yet only now are you beginning to see exactly what it was.  You're growing older, becoming your own man.  You're making me proud.  And I'm only now beginning to see that I should have been keeping that same goal in mind all along.

Jadzia Dax
(first appeared in "Emissary," first season)

Did I ever tell you how tall Curzon was?  I don't suppose your father would have told you that, but you remind me more of him every day, which is funny because your father still calls me "Old Man" because of him.  I think you'll find that it doesn't take a Trill to see how life is filled with these kinds of associations.

I was a young Starfleet officer, making my way through a career aboard various starships, always sure to make the most of every relationship.  I was the life of the party, but I suppose I still kept myself pretty isolated, which was more the Jadzia side of me than the symbiont.  I tended to keep others at arm's length.

Anyway, long story short, I came here and everything started to change.  I guess that I don't tend to dwell on the past, probably because there's so much history Dax brings to me.  Sometimes there are nasty surprises.  I prefer the happy ones, and those are the kind only the present can provide.  

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