By: Tori Morris
Many waters cannot quench love, neither can the floods drown it.
--The Song of Solomon
He's drowning slowly now, and she doesn't even notice.
He does his best to stay afloat, while she plots against his better judgment. Nerys tells him that she cannot hold back any further, that she's being called to action once more in her heart. He listens, and he nods and then he follows. Someone has to watch her back, protect her and aid her in her times of need. And he would be lost if it wasn't himself, so says the echoes of a time that never existed.
Nerys tells him that she wishes the Resistance had recruited him first; that he could have done a lot of good. He could have helped to free Bajor, her home. He would have liked to, and maybe he did in another reality. And he takes the compliment and savors it, but he doesn't tell her that now he doubts he ever could have. In another time and place, he knows there has to be an Odo that hasn't run away from everything important.
And while she plots and he guards like a hara cat, he finds himself missing a throat. Not the simulcron that functions, that allows him to speak with funny little humanoid vibrations. The real thing, the kind that would crave warm comforts and wash the rational world away with a dazzling liquid of one kind or another. He still remembers that, long after he's forgotten what exactly Hasperat tastes like, or the distinct feel of wool on real skin. Of course, he reminds himself, he had plenty of practice. And reluctantly, he allows himself that its a shame he can no longer drown himself in drink.
And then the Other arrives, come to see him. His resistance crumbles before her, slowly, like the tides washing away the shore. As she stands in the doorway to the wardroom, he begins to crumble. It's a thousand little betrayals before she asks him to Link, and then eventually it is too late.
He's drowning himself in another liquid now, neither fire nor ice. When Nerys asks him, he tries to explain the pure passion and emotion that comes with the Link, but he forgets to mention that after a while, there's so much that nothing matters except the next Link. He doesn't tell her that it's a blessing. That it is refreshing to feel wanted and needed, on more than a professional level, even for an instant. Everything he has been given, everything that has pressed down upon him since he took humanoid form is lifted; packed away into little crannies where he never has to think about them, if he so chooses. This is the promise that the Founder holds in her voiceless, wordless incantations.
He could let go of everything, return to the Link and its endless flurry of feelings and thought, whiting out the pain, and the neediness. At this point, it would be so easy; easier than seeking forgiveness.
And when he's solid and alone, he ponders the choices he's made.