Writer's note: When I first wrote "Visions Of The Things To Be", OdoGoddess was kind enough to point out to me another MAJOR Deep Space Nine/MASH touching point - the fact that Rene Auberjonois played Father Mulcahy in the MASH movie. I was writing "Visions" finale very late at night, and this piece was sacrificed to my exhaustion. This occurs inbetween Chaps. 14 and 15 of that story. I'm using a framing device, but the meat of the story features Odo in the role that Rene A. is most remembered as, prior to DS9. Hmmm. Could there be someone else from "Benson" about in this? There are "Visions" spoilers here.
by Rob Morris
As Odo entered Kira's quarters, he saw her motion for him to be quiet. Both O'Brien children were still staying at Nerys's. The O'Briens, separated for almost two weeks by a bizarre twist of time and space were - busy. Kira activated the one-way sound dampeners so that she and Odo could talk without waking Molly and her little brother.
"Oh, I love those kids! But if Keiko and Miles don't come for them soon, I swear I'll have them hosed down! The Padre told me that the Klingers are the same way, back in 1956!"
Odo smiled, at the thought of The Priest with the Prophet-awakened ability to traverse the timestream. The man's discussion with Odo and the simple faith possessed by Francis Mulcahy made the burden of Odo's destiny as his people's savior easier to bear.
"Temporal Affairs absolutely hates him! So does the Kai! You know, Nerys, maybe we should send him after Dukat!"
Kira's smile faded.
"No, Odo, I don't see us doing that. I mean, Dukat would love to get his hands on a Prophet, wouldn't he?"
Odo looked confused.
"You mean, get his hands on a host of the Prophets, don't you?"
Kira put her head down, then looked back up to speak.
"Odo, Father Mulcahy doesn't yet realize it, but he---kind of IS one of the Prophets! The being who claimed to be their Father showed me that Prophets sometimes assume mortal lives. The man known as Francis Mulcahy is one of them."
Odo shuddered, and instantly his clothes shifted - again - to those of the wartime fatigues once worn by Father Mulcahy. Kira looked at him with a mixture of concern and amusement.
"Nice. Wanna Try for Vedek? What did that being show you, in your visions? They seem to be staying with you, most of anyone."
"That being? Nerys, he all but identified himself as the God that most Terrans worship! More, the Prophets seemed to acknowledge him. Have you spoken with anyone about this?"
"Odo, who would I speak with? 'Oh, Kai Winn! Guess What? I met a being who may be the parent to the blessed Prophets.' I don't even want to think about that claim, let alone what she would do with it, once she heard."
Kira's faith had been both joyously fulfilled and badly shaken by the events in River Bend. Odo very wisely decided to change the subject.
"In my first vision, I was the Padre. Pierce and McIntyre had a bizarre scheme to prevent a man named "Painless" from ending his life. It involved me in a way I couldn't quite comprehend. Also, these two looked different from the Pierce and McIntyre we met. They had a rowdier, harsher edge to them. That vision was weird enough. In my second, I awoke in a large, spacious office, with a man yelling..."
"Clayton! HEY, Clayton!"
Clayton Endicott the 3rd awoke from his bizarre dream of being a cop. Pete was standing right next to him.
"Clayton, uh, schedule?"
Endicott realized he was late putting together the schedule for Governor Gatling's trip to Greatlink. He oozed through his entire desk, looking for a pen. Absently, he realized that Pete was of a species he had never seen before. As he hurriedly attempted to finish the schedule, in walked ever-cocky Lieutenant Governor Benson Dubois.
"Clayton, where is that schedule? If the Dominion thinks were showing disrespect, they could invade! Generally, that would drive the Governor's approval rating DOWN!"
Now Endicott was confused. Something from his dream leaked through.
"My people are invading 20th Century Earth?"
Benson looked at him askance.
"Well, Clayton, I hear that they thought about invading during the Renaissance, but ol' Billy Shakespeare was all booked up! Pete, go help the Governor find his tie! While you're at it, help Krause find her BRAIN! Tie first, though. There are, after all, priorities!"
Pete left, to do as he was bid.
"Benson, what species is Pete?"
"What species? He's A Talaxian!"
"Where do Talaxians come from?"
Dubois patronizingly pulled Endicott's cheek. Somehow, it hurt.
"Nowwww, Clayton! Didn't your mommy tell you where aliens come from?"
"Can the routine! Where is he from?"
"We found him in the Delta Quadrant, Duh!"
"How did we end up in the Delta Quadrant?"
Benson moved in for the kill.
"That's easy, Clayton, you were driving!"
DEEP SPACE NINE
"So, Nerys, that's how the whole thing went. I appeared to have no purpose but to serve as the butt of this man's jokes. Jokes I always walked into, I might add."
Kira had a question.
"What about the Dominion?"
"Oh, them. Well, we were late, and they did invade, and the Governor's approval ratings started to dip. But then Benson had the woman Krause pose as another Alien Queen who threatened and tricked the female shapeshifter of our acquaintance, and all was well within 25 minutes, as they agreed to a treaty against our "common foe". Then Pete married his wife, who--discorporated. Right at the end, the female shapeshifter saw Krause out of makeup, and got worried, but signed anyway. Very bizarre. And I haven't told you the strangest part."
Nerys couldn't imagine anything more strange, but asked anyway.
"What's that, Odo?"
"Well, the Governor and Benson were running against each other for re-election. The winner was just about to be announced."
"So, who won? Dubois or Gatling?"
Odo shook his head.
"I don't know! The being ended the image right then, and it never resumed! Nerys, I simply have to know who won! Even talking with Father Mulcahy hasn't helped rid me of my curiosity on this matter. What do you think?"
"I don't know, Odo. Some questions just don't have easy answers. Or, it seems, any answers at all. 'What If' is a dangerous, wasteful game to play. I mean, 'What If' we had all failed to stop Arne Darvin from killing Kirk? 'What If' that man's famous five-year mission had ended two years early as a result?"
"Ok, so I'm being foolish. But did you have to use such a ridiculous example as that?"
Odo then left, feeling somewhat better. On his way into Sisko's office, he passed Worf, who had been royally grilled over the Tuttle incident, and looked it.
"Ah, Constable! Just the man I wanted to see! We'll need extra security, the next 3 days. Company's coming!"
"I'll do what I can, Captain. What kind of company is expected, if I may ask?"
"We're going to be receiving a crew for the 2nd Prometheus-class ship ever built! My old friend Captain Gatling will be joined by his XO, Commander Guilliaume, and Science Officer Krause. Now, Odo, I'd like your people to inspect their ship, the W.E.B. Dubois, and check for signs... SISKO TO BASHIR! Doctor, the Constable has fainted in my office!"
"Doctor Bashir is treating some radiation burns, Captain! But I'll be right up!"
"Are you new here, Doctor?"
"Yes, sir! It's an honor to meet you! I'm Doctor Endicott! Heh! Some people seem to think I even resemble your constable!"