Disclaimer: I don't own any of the characters or Star Trek itself. I really liked Daro, Telle, and the obviously brilliant Macet in the episode, though.

After watching the TNG episode 'The Wounded', I decided to write a short story based around O'Brien's account to Glinn Daro of the Setlik III massacre. I wrote this really quickly, so I apologise if its not that good. Please R&R. Thank you ^_^

Miles O'Brien ran as fast as he could. The sun was beating down strongly, as it always seemed to do. There were no clouds in the sky, but the seemingly calm horizon was disrupted by the fighting below. The dying. The bloodshed. The screaming and the crying. The images and sounds blurred into a mass of confusion.

He had been stationed on Setlik III for barely a couple of days, and now he had gotten the order from his commanding officer that the Cardassian troops were planning yet another attack. Another attack. O'Brien wasn't sure the Federation could even take another hit.

Where Starfleet had a wealth of species, of cultures and of ideologies, Cardassia had hard, trained soldiers.

Where Starfleet had sheer manpower, Cardassia had sheer strength.

Most of all, though, the Cardassians had a military. They specialised in trickery and war; the Federation was an organisation of science and exploration and bettering oneself.

Nonetheless, O'Brien kept his cool as he rushed through the crowded streets. Turning a corner, he caught sight of a flash of yellow and black - Starfleet security. They approached them, but a blinding light intervened. The short, sharp beam of a phaser beam on narrow dispersal shot out at them. It hit the first security officer, and he fell to O'Brien's feet.

Instantly, O'Brien knelt down and checked for a pulse, but the poor man had been thrown at least three meters of so as a result of the blast. There was no pulse. O'Brien felt a phaser beam lick at his boots and he started back. He snapped his head up, noticing a pair of Cardassian officers with the phaser rifles poised. However, before he could attack them, the other Starfleet officer beside him had got them, and they both fell down dead as a result of the wide-beam blast.

"O'Brien?" he called out over the sounds of fighting.

O'Brien wiped his mouth and breathed heavily. "Lieutenant..." He didn't even know the man's name. The whom might very well be the last person he ever sees - who wasn't a Spoonhead.

"Mitchell," he huffed, wiping the sweat from his brow. It was caked in blood and transpiration and debris from falling buildings and shot-down shuttles.

O'Brien nodded. He gasped for air and adjusted his phaser, but realised that the circuitry was fried. In a fit of temper, he threw it on the ground.

"Take mine," the lieutenant offered, proffering his phaser decide to Miles.

Severely, O'Brien shook his head. "No," he said firmly. "You keep it. You need to focus on cordoning off the safety zones." He hushed the man into a slightly more secluded area, dodging enemy fire as they went. "Hospitals, that sort of thing."

The young man nodded, but O'Brien could see the wavering uncertainty in his actions. He put a reassuring hand on his shoulder. "Go on, you'll be fine," he said. "I'll go check for survivors in that warehouse," he added, squinting and pointing over to a bombarded shed-like structure.

And so, the lieutenant left and O'Brien regathered his thoughts. He made a quick little prayer, despite not really being a religious man. Then, he made a run for it; rolling along the dusty ground, fighting lone Cardassian officers in hand-to-hand combat, hiding behind shards of metal, and checking the unconscious for signs of life.

Miles O'Brien entered the warehouse. It was dark and the air choked his lungs. He picked out his tricorder - at least that was still working. The screen was fuzzy and there was a bit of grime and dirt amongst the keys, but, it worked fine. He slapped it impatiently and opened it sharply. Scanning the darkened room, he detected seven life signs. They were all standing before him, and were a mixture of human and Bajoran. He advanced on them. "Is anyone hurt?" As he shone the inbuilt light on his tricorder over the group of people, he saw that there were five women, and two children. The youngsters were weeping, crying into their mother's skirts.

O'Brien's breath caught, but his Starfleet oath got the better of him. "Are you all alright?" he asked again, slightly reiterating his previous words.

A woman answered. She was human. "Yes, we are all well. Have Starfleet come to rescue us? What's happening out there?" She sniffed; she was only young. "We heard all this shouting and yelling. There was phaser fire, and a few shuttles came down."

O'Brien nodded, taking in the information. "We have rescue and medical craft landing two miles away. My commander said more troops were on their way."

"The Cardassians keep coming," a Bajoran woman let on. "They won't stop. Two, they came in here. We had been hiding here for a few hours. I guess the building must look so ravaged on the outside that the Cardies didn't think anyone would survive it."

O'Brien frowned slightly. "You said two Cardassians came in," he reminded her, watching her carefully.

"Yes," she said quickly, nodding. "They were followed by two Starfleet officers, and they shot the Cardassians."

"Where are the Starfleet officers?" O'Brien asked, though he was fairly certain he already knew the answer, which saddened him greatly.

It was the first woman who answered this time. "After they killed the Cardassians, they told us they would be back, when they had gotten help. That was half an hour ago."

And they still hadn't come back. O'Brien didn't even need to think about that to know what had happened to them.

A blinding light burst into the neglected, ruined warehouse. In came two Cardassians, weapons charged. In an instant, O'Brien hushed his protectees aside and threw himself at on of the Cardassians - the smaller, but still reasonably tall one.

The alien writhed under O'Brien's grip, but the Starfleet officer still managed to subdue him with a quick punch to the head. The Cardassian's head lolling to one side, as he was thrown into the darkness of unconsciousness, O'Brien heard yelps in the background.

He turned to see the other Cardassian hauling away two of the women. One of the other woman - a Bajoran - threw something at O'Brien. O'Brien started at it for a fraction of a second, and then he saw what it was. Before checking the setting, he fired it at the offender, and they disappeared in a quick burst of light. The Cardassian was now no loner more than a pile of ash on the war-torn floor.

The women started to weep, as did the children. It seemed as though the fighting outside as dying down as a group of Starfleet and, surprisingly, but thankfully, Klingon officers came charging in.

The turmoil outside had flattened, but O'Brien's heart was racing. He had never killed a man before.