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Bajoran troops arrive to a noticeably empty station after demanding Starfleet leave. Sisko, not happy to follow the Prime Directive to the letter, leads several groups in sabotaging key systems... buying time for Kira and Dax to present Odo's evidence to the Chamber of Ministers on Bajor...
In conclusion... we see what the Bajorans used to fight the mighty Cardassian Empire with, which gives you the sense that the Occupation died only really by a thousand cuts, rather than being out powered. And we get another taste of how manipulative Winn is.
In Ops, Sisko is addressing the staff. He says that since Starfleet is here at the invitation of the Provisional Government... and if they no longer want them there, then there is no choice but to leave. But it's not that simple for the troops... one officer is engaged to a Bajoran, another's child worked on a prize winning science project. Lives have been built here, and it's not as easy as just walking away.

Sisko explains that he is staying, just to oversee the evacuation... and everyone murmurs in agreement, but Sisko explains they risk a court martial for disobeying Starfleet Command's orders. O'Brien explains that Sisko will need someone to oversee inventory, Bashir explains that packing up his supplies will take a while.

Seeing the commitment from his crew, Sisko explains their mission - to slow the takeover of the Bajoran government by The Circle. They have five hours to prepare for the Bajoran ships.

On the promenade, Quark and Rom look at all the people trying to leave... and Quark realises there is profit to be made. On the upper level, Nog and Jake are upset about being separated... but they will see each other again. In the O'Brien's quarters Keiko and Molly are upset that Miles isn't joining them... but Keiko seems to accept the fact that he's doing what he thinks is right.

In Ops, Dax can't get through to the chamber at all, so Li and Kira think about the Luna 5 base... which used to have sub impulse ships there. Sisko suggests Dax join Kira as Toban had experience with those sorts of engines. Odo arrives holding the scruff of Quark's clothes, he's been caught brokering seats on the runabouts. Sisko breaks, and grabs the Ferengi by his neck... only to be interrupted by a concerned Bashir who has dozens of passengers scrambling to get on board... but it's been overbooked. Sisko and Li head to the airlock, as Odo snidely tells Quark he'll miss him... but in their typical manner, Quark tells him to take care.

At the airlock, Sisko can't stop the crowd... so Li steps up, and insists that the runabouts are for the guests to leave because it is no longer safe. The Bajoran crowd calms after his speech and disperses. Sisko says goodbye to Jake as Kira and Dax board too. As the airlock doors close, Quark arrives with a heavy case and says the Rio Grande is his ship... Bashir explains Rom boarded with a dabo girl ( ! )

A short time later, the Bajoran ships arrive and soldiers board the station. Colonel Day is keen to report success but General Krim is surprised that the Starfleet contingent left so easily. Meanwhile on Luna 5, Kira and Dax find a ship... and Jadzia manages to fire up the engines.

Back in Ops, Krim informs Jarro that the internal security net has been sabotaged so someone doesn't want to be easily found. In Jarro's office, Winn is in the background concerned about the developments. But Jarro explains that once he's installed he will direct the Vedek Assembly to appoint Winn as the new Kai.

On the station, more sabotage as the lights go out while Krim is trying to explain the enemies mind set to Day. In the conduits, the Starfleet crews are split up into cells and they tuck into some field rations as a patrol approaches Bashir's position. We follow the patrol into a cargo bay, who are ambushed by the Doctor's team.

On the sub impulse ship, Kira and Dax approach the planet... but more systems are not working, then they are attacked by Bajoran ships. So she flies into the atmosphere to level the playing field.

Back on the darkened station, O'Brien and Li are in the security office taking something... when they are fired upon from the second level. Sisko and the rest of the team come in as reinforcements and O'Brien and Li managed to escape from the office. Back over Bajor, despite destroying one of the attackers... the fight doesn't go so well and Kira and Dax crash.

On the station, Day and a team discover a holosuite running... so they break in to discover Sisko, Li and O'Brien sitting at a table. But before they can do anything the doors close and the trio disappear - they were a hologram. Sisko explains the truth to Day... but he doesn't believe him and then Day is beamed to Ops where he says that Sisko spoke to him, but didn't say anything of consequence. Day says that he promised Sisko amnesty, but he doesn't have any intention of keeping it.

On Bajor, Kira is badly wounded and she insists that Dax leave her behind... but a patrol approaches before they can get anywhere just then Kira passes out. On the station, Sisko realises that they are starting to run out of options... Kira and Dax should've presented their evidence by now.

Kira wakes in Bareil's monastery, where he explains that she's been patched up as Dax enters wearing a monk's robes, members of religious orders are the only ones that can walk the streets. Bareil insists on coming, and the trio head off.

In Ops Colonel Day orders all units to airlock fourteen after reports of a fire fight. Krim stays behind and tries to see what's going on, but the surveillance cameras are off line. Security then reports the enemy has surrendered at airlock 14. General Krim enters his office to discover Li and Sisko waiting for him.

In the Chamber of Ministers, Kira and Dax enter and bluster the claim of Cardassian involvement. She shows the PADD, and explains to the Chamber how the Cardassians provided the Kressari the weapons for The Circle. Seeing no choice, Jarro agrees to allow inspection of the PADD.

Back in Ops, Day arrives with the prisoners and Krim angrily tells Day that he's returning to the surface to probably resign. But Day doesn't accept this, and he levels his weapon on Sisko... as he fires Li jumps in the way and cops a blast to the chest, shortly afterward he dies.

A short time later, the runabouts return and Jake and the O'Brien's disembark. Everyone's happy as we fade to the credits...
Starring:
Avery Brooks as Commander Sisko
Nana Visitor as Major Kira
Terry Farrell as Lieutenant Dax
Siddig El Fadil as Doctor Bashir
Colm Meaney as Chief O'Brien
René Auberjonois as Odo
Armin Shimerman as Quark
Cirroc Lofton as Jake Sisko
Special Guest Star:
Louise Fletcher

Guest Cast:
Steven Weber
Richard Beymer
Stephen Macht
Rosalind Chao
Max Grodénchik
Aron Eisenerg
Written By:
Michael Piller
Directed By:
Winrich Kolbe
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