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Strange Bedfellows

Production no.: 569
Written by: Ronald D. Moore
Directed by: Rene Auberjonois
Stardate: not given 
First satellite airdate: April 17, 1999
Penny Johnson ......
Jeffrey Combs ......
Marc Alaimo .........
Casey Biggs ..........
J.G. Hertzler .........
James Otis ............
Salome Jens ..........
Louise Fletcher .....
Female Changeling
Kai Winn

On the bridge of the Jem'Hadar ship, Weyoun has the prisoners taken away and secured in a cell, together. "They may wish to physically comfort each other on the long trip back to Cardassia. I find inter-species mating rituals fascinating to watch." After Ezri and Worf are hauled off, Weyoun belatedly introduces Damar to the Breen general, Thot Gor. Damar still resents the fact that he wasn't told they were meeting the Breen.

In the corridor, the Female Changeling takes a moment to morph away the signs of her illness before entering the bridge to graciously greet the Breen, mentioning that she's sure they'll sign the treaty in a few days. Damar complains that he hasn't even seen this treaty, but Weyoun shushes him. Meanwhile, the Founder is telling Thot Gor, "The alliance between the Breen Confederacy and the Dominion will end this destructive war that has torn this quadrant apart. With the Breen at our side, the Federation will not be able to stand against us. They'll be erased from the face of the galaxy."

Later, Damar gets a chance to see the treaty, and is incensed by the unspecified territorial concessions that the Cardassians are to make to the Breen. Weyoun tells him he needn't worry; he need only sign the document. After the Breen help them win the war, there will be plenty of territory for the Cardassians. He suggests that Damar talk to Thot Gor. "I don't trust him or his people," Damar fumes. "The Founders should never have agreed to give away Cardassian territory without my consent!" "I'm sorry, I think I misunderstood you," Weyoun says coldly. "It sounded as if you were implying that Cardassian territory doesn't belong to the Founders. Surely that isn't what you meant."

Without any other choice, Damar backs down. But there is another matter bothering him: the Klingons have attacked Septimus III. Damar is concerned that the Cardassian troops there won't survive without reinforcements. Weyoun smoothly assures him that the situation will be dealt with. "We will not allow your brave soldiers to perish in vain. You have my word."

Martok has a conference with Sisko, expressing his confidence that Septimus III will fall within a week; the Klingon then turns the subject to "the war at home...a long, grueling, intoxicating war." He's referring to Sisko having just married Kasidy. Martok reminisces about when his wife Sirella first moved into his home.

Winn and Dukat are relaxing post-coitally in bed, happily eating breakfast and planning the "restoration" of Bajor. "A sacred responsibility," Winn says, going over to look at herself in a mirror. "...I pray that I'll have the strength to do what the Prophets are asking of me." Dukat plays up to her ambition, and they share the resolution not to let Sisko stand in their way.

In their cell, Ezri and Worf have been hung upside down from the ceiling. Worf says they must get back to the station and warn Starfleet about the Breen. Ezri agrees. "There's just a few problems. We're on a Jem'Hadar ship, heading in the wrong direction, hanging upside down, and..." "And what?" "I think I'm getting spacesick," Ezri says unhappily.

Kasidy returns from a run, telling her new husband about the sudden regard she has gained from her Bajoran crewmates since marrying the Emissary. "Welcome to the club," says Sisko. He tells her about an annual ceremony he's been performing to bless the women on the station who want to become mothers; people have been asking that the Emissary's wife perform it this year -- this week, in fact. Kasidy refuses. "I've got to draw the line somewhere. I married you, I didn't convert. And I'm not going to start acting like I suddenly believe in the Prophets." Sisko tells her he doesn't want her to do anything she's not comfortable with; she goes off to take a shower. "And so the battle begins," Sisko murmurs to himself.

Worf and Ezri are now in a holding cell on Cardassia, no longer upside down. They try to remove a small pin from the bunk, which leads to bickering, and back to the sore subject of their night together. "I was seduced and betrayed," Worf says, declaring that she obviously desired a physical relationship with him from the start. Ezri has a few things to say about his ego, and things deteriorate until they're interrupted by Weyoun, who enters with Damar and a couple of guards.

Weyoun wants to clarify a few issues from their interrogation by the Breen; he threatens to turn them over to Damar, who informs them that they are to be tried as war criminals, found guilty, and executed. But that sentence can be reduced to life imprisonment if they cooperate. When Ezri speaks up defiantly, Weyoun smiles, holding up a PADD. "You know, my dear, it would be such a shame for you to die without the good Dr. Bashir knowing how you felt about him." Suddenly Worf grabs the Vorta's head and twists it; Weyoun falls dead.

As the guards subdue Worf, Damar bends over Weyoun, and begins to laugh. "Overconfidence. The hallmark of the Weyouns. Maybe the Founders should eliminate that from your genetic recipe next time," he tells the corpse. Then, to Worf, "They'll just make another copy of him, you know. You should have killed me. There's only one Damar." He tells Worf to consider the offer; the execution is in two days.

"Who are you?" Winn asks Dukat as they sit together drinking wine. He is relieved to find she means she wants to know more about this "simple farmer" who shares her bed. Then suddenly Winn has another vision, of aliens in the forms of Sisko, Kira, Solbor, and Odo. She tells them she's ready to learn what she must do. "I give myself to the Prophets in all things." The aliens comment that she does not understand. They close around her, their eyes glowing red. "Give us your allegiance, Kai Winn Adami." "Restore us to our rightful place in the Celestial Temple." "Reject the false Prophets." "Walk our path, and embrace your own destiny." "Feel our love -- the love of the pah-wraiths."

"No!" Winn screams, horrified. Shaken and almost hysterical, she tells Dukat to have Solbor bring her the Orb from the station shrine. "I must bare my soul to the Prophets and beg their forgiveness." Dukat asks if that's wise, but Winn repeats her order. Dukat leaves, and smiles to himself as he walks down the corridor.

"Well, hello!" Damar chuckles when the new Weyoun clone walks into the Dominion headquarters. "I'm glad to see you find the death of my predecessor so amusing," Weyoun says sourly; Damar replies, "You misjudge me. I miss him deeply. Here, let's drink to Weyoun Seven." Weyoun, unamused, asks about the prisoners' execution, which Damar says is set for tomorrow afternoon. They haven't signed the confessions. "Maybe you should talk to Worf again," Damar chortles.

But his mirth turns to anger when Thot Gor comes in, and Weyoun lets him access a classified Cardassian database. Damar's protests fall on deaf ears; Weyoun tells him the decision was made by the Founder, who has also decreed that Damar's military recommendations will from now on be submitted to her through Thot Gor. It's obvious that the Dominion is bending over backwards to cater to the Breen, at the expense of the Cardassians. Damar is furious, but helpless to do anything about it. "Make plans to do exactly as the Founder instructed, or you can schedule an execution for yourself as well," Weyoun orders.

Ezri and Worf put their escape plan into motion, managing to short out the door, grab weapons, and shoot three guards, but Worf is injured in the leg, and Ezri refuses to leave him. They are quickly recaptured.

In Quark's, watched by O'Brien and Bashir, Quark pours a drink for an empty chair -- his way of keeping vigil for Ezri until she returns. Bashir is brooding, lost in thought. "Funny, I was just starting to -- " "Starting to what?" O'Brien asks. Bashir looks a little far away. "I don't know. But there was something -- something about her, wasn't there? Something that made me happy, anyway. She was this old soul, and yet so young at heart, and...and...I don't know what I'm saying." He wanders off distractedly.

Solbor finally brings the Orb of Prophecy to Winn's quarters. The old man is silently displeased when Winn dismisses him but not Dukat. Winn faces the orb, opens the tabernacle -- and nothing happens. "The Prophets show me nothing," she breathes, devastated and lost. "They won't speak to me. They have forsaken me, because I have been in communion with the evil ones." Dukat decides that this is the time, and reveals that the pah-wraiths, not the Prophets, led him to her. The pah-wraiths are not evil; they want to make Bajor strong.

Winn can't believe what she's hearing. She screams at him to get away from her. Dukat clasps her wrists. "Enough! The Prophets have done nothing for you. During the Occupation, they turned their backs and let our people suffer...You've sacrificed everything for them, and how have they rewarded you? They've appointed an alien Emissary. They've rejected you at every turn. Even now they won't speak to you." Weeping, she calls for Solbor; he covers her mouth. "The pah-wraiths will give you everything you've ever dreamt of -- the power, the adoration of the people. In spite of your protestations of humility, that's what you really want. Admit it. Stop pretending to be something you're not. Take what they're offering you."

Finally Winn breaks free, glaring at him. "Get out." "Go," replies Dukat harshly. "Crawl back to your Prophets. Beg their forgiveness. Live the rest of your life in Sisko's shadow." He leaves behind a shattered and desperate woman who sits on the floor, staring at the orb. "I'll do anything you ask," she pleads. "You need only give the word. Have you nothing to say to me? Am I so offensive to your eyes that I don't exist for you anymore? There must be something I can do to prove to you that I'm still worthy of your love." No visions come; no answers.

There is only one person Winn feels she can turn to for guidance; so it is that Kira finds herself summoned to the Kai's quarters in the middle of the night. Winn confesses that she has strayed from the path the Prophets laid down for her. She will do anything to earn their forgiveness. Seeing the genuine pain in the woman's eyes, Kira takes her hands. "The worst of us can be redeemed...I'm not a Vedek, but it seems to me that you have to set aside the things that led you astray -- ambition, jealousy." She urges Winn to turn away from temptation, give herself over to the Prophets. "Everything will change once you step down as Kai, you'll see."

Winn stares at her. Despite her remorse and need for redemption, she can't find it in herself to give up her power. She rationalizes, saying that Bajor needs her, that she can better serve the Prophets if she remains Kai. "If the Prophets wanted me to step down, surely they would have told me so." Kira looks at her sadly, knowing that Winn will never change after all. "They don't always use words to make their wishes known. Sometimes they speak to us by touching our hearts. But only you would know if they've done that." However, Winn simply isn't capable of being that honest with herself. "But Bajor needs me," she insists. "Good night, Eminence," Kira says quietly, and leaves.

In the Dominion briefing room, Damar is with Weyoun when he sees news on his monitor, that Septimus III has fallen. An entire order was wiped out there. Damar is beyond enraged by the casual way in which 500,000 of his people were sacrificed by the Dominion. Weyoun claims their loss wasn't in vain; they forced the Klingons to commit resources to capture a strategically worthless planet. "If they were truly loyal Cardassians, then they died willingly for the Dominion. There can be no greater sacrifice." "How many more sacrifices will my people be asked to make?" Damar demands. Weyoun looks at him coolly. "Your people, Damar? We are all one with the Dominion. Vorta, Cardassian, Jem'Hadar, the Breen -- we all serve the Founders, and we will all make whatever sacrifices they deem necessary."

Seething, Damar stalks out as Weyoun and Thot Gor turn their backs on him. He goes to his quarters, takes a drink, and pours another. Then he catches sight of his reflection in a mirror -- and hates what he sees. Suddenly, he flings the drink at the mirror.

In the holding cell, Ezri can't help but dwell on the direness of her and Worf's situation. Worf, for his part, is still bitter towards her. "Do you really think that I would disobey orders and risk my life so that I could seduce you?" she asks, exasperated. "I hate to burst your bubble, Worf, but it wasn't that good." Worf does not appreciate the humor. Ezri has had enough. "Are you angry at me for something I did, or because I'm not Jadzia? Let's cut right to the heart of the matter. Do you love me? Me, Ezri?" Worf says he made his feelings clear on Goralis III. "What is it, Worf?" she asks. "Could it be that you're feeling just a little guilty because you don't have the same feelings for me that you did for Jadzia? If that's true, then maybe we both made a mistake back on Goralis. So maybe we both should be forgiven." "This night would be better spent preparing ourselves for the next life, instead of rehashing the mistakes of this one," Worf replies.

The next day, they are still waiting in the cell when Worf finally breaks the silence. He tells her she is right. "I do not love you as I loved Jadzia...I dishonored myself." He admits that on Goralis, he allowed himself to see Jadzia instead of Ezri; and Ezri in return says that the part of her that is Jadzia wanted to be close to him. "I realize Jadzia saw physical love differently than I do," Worf says. "To her it could mean many things, but to me it was a deeply spiritual act. When I made love to you, my motives were not spiritual. It was an unworthy impulse."

Ezri looks at him compassionately. "Worf, we're not gods or prophets. We're people. We make mistakes. There is one other thing I want you to know. I honestly didn't realize how I felt about Julian. I would have never hidden something like that from you." "I believe you," Worf says. "And I do not hold any malice toward you, or Dr. Bashir." They shake hands, reconciled as friends "and more". "It appears all we have left to do is to be executed," Worf observes. Ezri smiles wryly. "Sounds like a lazy day to me."

The door opens; Damar is there with two Jem'Hadar guards. "It's time." They haven't gone five steps from the cell, however, when Damar shoots the guards dead. Worf and Ezri are dumfounded as the Cardassian leader informs them that there's a ship waiting with the information they'll need to get past the security checkpoints. Asked why he's doing this, Damar says, "I want you to give a message to the Federation. Tell them they have an ally on Cardassia." Worf asks why they should trust him; Damar replies that they can trust him or stay here and be executed. "I vote for option one," says Ezri. They take the phasers he offers them, and make tracks.

When Weyoun learns of the escape, Damar is pokerfaced as he reminds him that the Vorta was the one who put the Jem'Hadar in charge of the detention area. Weyoun is worried about how he'll report this to the Founder. "I'm sure she'll understand," says Damar. "But if she doesn't, I look forward to meeting Weyoun Nine."

Dukat comes back to Winn's quarters, having been summoned there. Quietly, Winn recalls the first time she saw the wormhole open, and how everyone else said they felt the love of the Prophets. She herself felt nothing, a fact she's never admitted to anyone. "They've never spoken to me, never offered me guidance, never trusted me with the fruits of their wisdom. And now, I'm supposed to step down as Kai in order to be blessed by them. No! I have worked too hard, waited too long to give it all up now." Dukat stokes the fire. "You shouldn't have to. Merciful gods don't ask their children to make such sacrifices." Winn's face grows hard. "The Prophets have turned their backs on me, after all I've done for them, all the pain I've endured for them." "They are not worthy of you, Adami," he agrees.

"I'm a patient woman," Winn continues. "But I have run out of patience. I will no longer serve gods who give me nothing in return. I'm ready to walk the path the pah-wraiths have laid out for me." Dukat smiles. He has her. They vow that they will walk that path together, and no one will be able to stand against them. "Those who dare to try," Winn says, "the Federation and its Vedek puppets, the false gods and their precious Emissary -- they'll all be swept aside, like dead leaves before an angry wind."

  • The original title of this episode was "Eclipse".
  • There was initially going to be an additional plot thread about Kasidy adjusting to life as the Emissary's wife. Two scenes were filmed but were cut for time: Kira telling Kasidy about her non-religious father attending services to be close to her mother, and Kasidy taking over the blessing ceremony from Sisko.