Title: People Like You

Author: nostalgia

Rated: PG

Summary: AU - Bashir joins Section 31.

Disclaim: Umm...Berman, some other people...Paramount.

A date?: December 2002

Author's Random Shit: Because there's this little bit of me that likes Section 31, there's this little bit that sees their point. I'm half sinister, on my mother's side.


People like you are the ones that we need. People who think on a problem until they have the answers, people who have great ideas and can convince others of their truth. People who are prepared to fight.

Think for a moment, about yourself. Born defective, altered by illegal surgery into something more than you were ever meant to be. Something reviled. And yet you chose to join the society that sought to exclude you. You lied so that you could help the very people who held you in contempt. You lived a lie, created a false childhood for yourself that was so convincing even you were starting to believe it. And then they changed the rules, altered the status quo to incorporate you. You discovered that change is a lot simpler than we'd like people to believe.

So, yes, people like you. The best allies you can have are the one who used to oppose you - they have so much insight into your weaknesses, they've already plotted your downfall.The truly orthodox are useless. The truly orthodox never think. That's why they work in public and we work in their shadows, securing and protecting the paradise they create.

People like you are the ones that we someday have to kill. The dangerous sort, who think thoughts that they aren't supposed to. Who might one day step back from this organisation and seek to destroy it. You know better than most of them how difficult that would be, how impossible the task appears. But it's not beyond the realms of possibility. There's a slight chance that the right defections could make us crumble. That's why we don't allow our operatives to resign. From the moment you walked through that door, you were ours. From that moment you became an instrument, a pawn. You will do what we tell you, when we tell you. If we tell you to kill your parents, you will do it. If we ask you to commit genocide, you will do it. You are ours now.

And we are yours. You will never be lonely again, Julian. You have all the friends you will ever need. You might not know their names - or even their faces - but if you need them, you will find them. If you die, it will be for the purest of goals, if you suffer, we will make others bear your pain. It's not revenge, it's taking care of the family.

You know, of course, that you can never leave us. Even if you grow too old or too sick, or if you begin to doubt our motivations, we can never allow to wander off on your own. You'll know too much, you'll be able to endanger too many lives. People like you - people like us - are too dangerous to be left to our own devices. I trust you would be prepared to do the same to me if ever I became a threat. Quick and painless, the touch of a loving death.

Some day, perhaps, we won't be needed anymore. When this utopia is truly stable, when dissent has been eradicated. When the individual and the whole are integrated so completely that opposition becomes utterly inconceivable. If that time ever comes, this organisation will be allowed to dissolve, to slip away knowing that the future is secure. That day is the day we are always working towards. Our final goal is our own obliteration. Perfection, as the Borg would say in that hollow metal whisper of theirs.

But for now, we need people like you.

I remember when we first met, when I thought you were a spy for the Dominion. You were so shocked when you learned of our existence. Strange that the idea of an organisation that operates the way we do had never even occurred to you. Well, I suppose the Federation propaganda machine actually does its job correctly from time to time. And we're well-hidden, we're very...adept.

I told you who we were - at least, as far as I could. I told you that we are the force that has kept the Federation together for hundreds of years. Hundreds of years, Doctor, do you have any sense of the scale of that achievement? I told you all those things. I told you the lengths we're willing to go to to protect our ideals. And yet you looked at me with such contempt, as though your goals and your actions were so much purer and more honest than mine. You told me, so self-righteous, that I was betraying the very principles I claimed to protect.

You couldn't see the bigger picture. You forgot that every regime in history has been supported by an organisation like ours. Even the purest of lights has embraced the shadows. Disinformation, assassination, outright lies...these are the most powerful forms of self-defence. We can't afford to turn away from these darker truths. But you see this now; you understand.

I always knew you'd come round. I knew you'd see past everything, past all your moral quibbles, see that our organisation has only the best of intentions. There is a greater good than the one you defended so vehemently that day. There is a more perfect ideal for which sacrifices must be made and lies must be spun. Internal dissent is more dangerous than the Dominion. We must present a united front.

And you are going to help us. You have made the greatest decision you will ever make. Anything you have done, before this meeting or after, will be pale and flickering by comparison. From now on everything you do is done for a reason, your existence has a purpose.

Welcome to our family, Julian.