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Trovek/Geleth - Path of the Prophets - Unity Temple

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Again @Arys gives us a great view into her character. And again I wasn't expecting the direction it took. I loved it.



((Town of Carinth, Raijalla Valley, Bajor))

The USS Narendra had docked at Deep Space Nine, and Arys was lucky to have been amongst one of the first crewmembers permitted to take the shuttle to Bajor. She had Geleth to thank for that. While the little girl had behaved well during the days they spent travelling, she had gotten restless and stir-crazy as soon as Bajor had come into view. 

Arys couldn’t blame her, even if the idea of going to Bajor didn’t exactly instil Arys with excitement. If anything, she felt anxious. 

While Arys’ mother Sileah was Bajoran, she herself had never felt connected to her ancestry, and never accepted Bajoran culture and customs as her own. Generally speaking that wouldn’t have been a problem if Sileah hadn’t made it into one. Thinking back to her childhood and early teens, most arguments between mother and daughter were caused by Arys’ reluctance, or outright refusal, to join celebrations of Bajoran holidays and participate in prayers. 

Then again, thinking back to that time, and now raising a little girl of her own, Arys would have done many things differently. 

Geleth: What is that? 

The little girl’s voice pulled Arys out of her regrets and back into the here and now, where warm rays of sunlight bathed the plaza in golden light. Arys had almost forgotten how beautiful Bajor was, with its large stretches of forested woodland, the thousands of lakes that dotted the landscape, and the tall mountains rising in the distance. But Geleth wasn’t talking about any of that. 

Trovek: What is what?

Arys turned her head to look down at the little girl, and then allowed her gaze to follow her outstretched arm towards what it was the child had spotted. The building in question was distinctly Bajoran, and yet even from a distance adorned with elements of other cultures. Eight spires flanked right and left, and while Arys didn’t know if the number held any significance, she could see, and appreciate, the nod towards Cardassian architecture. In contrast to that, the wide, squared archways reminded of Klingon or perhaps Terran influences. Behind the dome-shaped structure was a lower building, perhaps a place for the Vedeks and other religious devotees to remain during their pilgrimage, and a squared building with large windows likely served as a visitor centre or museum. 

The temple was beautiful, its open gates welcoming to any who might visit, and Arys guessed that this was the newly built Unity Temple she had seen advertised. 

Trovek: That’s a temple to the Prophets, but it’s a special one. 

Geleth: Why is it special?

The plaza filled with arriving crewmen, and Arys reached out for Geleth’s hand, leading her to a slightly less crowded area. She was thankful for the fact that this bought her a few additional seconds to come up with a good response to the girl’s question. She knew what made the temple special, and in honour of what it had been erected, but she didn’t quite know how to explain it to a six years old child. 

Trovek: Well, you see, there was a time when Bajor was … visited… by another species. And while they visited, they destroyed many of the temples and took things for their own homeworld. 

She glanced at Geleth, watching the girl’s face scrunch up in thought. So far, so good…

Trovek: Over the past years, a lot of efforts were made to recover as many of those things as possible. And when the things were brought back, they needed a place for them, so they build a temple. And because Bajor’s friends helped to recover those things, they made the temple to look like this. 

Internally, Arys congratulated herself for such a child-friendly description. 

Geleth: Lukin said you can’t take things from others. Because, that would be stealing. I don’t want to be a… stealer. 

Trovek: That’s true. ::she nodded, opting not to correct ‘stealer’ into ‘thief’:: But you know, it’s easy to be a good person when you have everything you want. 

Benjamin Sisko was quoted to have said something along the lines of ‘it’s easy to be a saint in paradise’. Cardassian hadn’t invaded Bajor out of malice, but because their own homeward was poor on resources. Not that this excused what had happened, but sooner or later Geleth would learn about her own species’ involvement in Bajor’s history, and it was important for her to understand that there was more to the story than a black and white definition of good and evil. 

Geleth: Lukin says you can never be a stealer. ::the girl frowned:: So you are wrong, Arys. 

Arys closed her eyes and shook her head. So much for her confidence in parenting skills. 

Trovek: … Fine, Lukin is right. 

Geleth nodded, evidently pleased with how she had outreasoned Arys. She observed the temple for a short while before she continued her interrogation.

Geleth: Do you pray to the Prophets? 

Arys shook her head. Despite having grown up in a very religious household, Arys had never truly believed in prayers and worship. As a child, she had been sure that the Prophets were essentially imaginary friends. Now she had settled on the idea of them being Aliens that liked being prayed to by gullible people.

A small smile formed on her lips as she remembered that it was her disdain towards the Prophets in general that had drawn the attention of Lukin. She couldn’t quite remember what it was she had said to the two Cadets she had been accompanied by, but it must have been something along the lines of ‘if you want to pray to some alien, pray to that Cardassian over there’. 

And of course, Lukin hadn’t at all minded the idea of being worshipped. 

Trovek: I don’t. 

Geleth took a moment to process this information, returning her gaze to the temple. 

Geleth: Can I pray to the prophets? 

That was a very good question. There were many religious groups that believed Bajor was for Bajorans, and by extension, that worshipping the Prophets was a privilege only Bajorans held. Then again, Arys wasn’t sure if there was actual doctrine that kept others from converting to their faith. Logically, the answer to Geleth’s question should be yes. 

But then why did it make Arys nauseous to even think about it? Geleth frowned and pressed on, growing impatient as Arys didn’t respond.

Geleth: Can we go there now

Trovek: No we can’t. I forbid it. 

The answer had come without much thought, and without the usual warmth her voice held when addressing Geleth. Arys bit her lip, trying to backpedal on her statement, but it seemed like the damage was already done. The girl’s lower lip quivered and her blue eyes filled with tears that brimmed over when Arys knelt down to her. 

Trovek: I’m sorry. It makes me uncomfortable, you know? 

A lame excuse for a disdain that shouldn’t affect what Arys allowed Geleth, and what not. 

Geleth: W-… why…. ? It’s so pretty….. 


Arys didn’t know. The temple was majestic and beautiful and inviting. The wind carried the joyful chanting of devotees over the fields, and the warmth that welled up in Arys’ chest was comforting and suffocating at the same time. 

Despite all, the temple was familiar. Despite all, a part of Arys longed to leave behind her concerns and doubts and join the singing. 

Trovek: I… ::she sighed:: Please don’t cry. We can ask Lukin if he will take you. Or Ferri.

It was likely that one of them would indeed take the girl, and the little hybrid would likely receive a warm welcome and praise for her interest in her Bajoran heritage. And part of Arys wanted to go with her, but-... 

Geleth: I want to go find Lukin now. 

Trovek: Of course you do. 

Arys sighed heavily and got back up, and her heart felt like it was shrinking in her chest, flooding her body with heaviness. She was disappointed in Geleth for wanting Lukin, and in herself for not putting her past behind her.

It was in moments like these that she very much doubted that she would ever make a good mother, and she could only be grateful that Lukin was a great father figure. Hopefully he could make up for her failure. 


Lt. Trovek Arys (and Geleth!)

Chief Medical Officer

Starbase 118 Ops



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