From:Dominion
To:*Galactic-Enquirer
Stardate:19990425.1548
Subject:A Message From the Dominion

The imposing emblem of the Dominion once more appropriates the screen, but this time it does not reveal a Vorta, but rather a plain-faced Terran male, standing in a control center of some starbase or installation.

"Greetings," the Terran says quietly, clasping his hands behind his back. "I am called Poietes, of the Dominion. I am of the people your quadrant knows as Changelings, and I am here not to defend myself or my people in the face of some nameless accuser; there will always be such people, antagonistic to all of your factions, and the very notion that the 'voice of the Alpha quadrant' rears its head and speaks to us is patently absurd."

Poietes takes a step closer to the screen, his neutral gaze slowly forming into a scowl. "I am no diplomat, nor even much of a speaker. But I feel that I have some small duty to respond not to the accusations of the 'Voice of the Alpha Quadrant,' but rather reply in kind with the 'Voice of the Gamma Quadrant,' and mark my words: Our voice is strong. But had it meant to toss veiled threats and epithets as does this other voice, it would have done so when it arrived. I promise you, citizens of the Alpha Quadrant, that if the Galactic Dominion wanted to conquer and destroy you, either you or we would be destroyed. It is not /my/ way to say one thing and do another," he snorts, shaking his head. "Nay. It is you whose diplomats and speakers say nothing but hypocrisy. I ask you to do nothing but -look- at what the Dominion has done since we arrived. We have built, as you call it, a space mall. Yes, we are prepared to defend it, but we did not conquer it. We have not conquered a single starsystem or person, and we have no intent to do so ..." Vail steps back, looking more contemplative. "But if our words of peace are met with torpedoes but one more time, even the infinite patience of the Vorta will snap. Think you that we care about not being invited to this quadrant? Think you also that you yourselves would not have ventured, un-invited, into /our/ quadrant if you had the chance? So we were not -asked- to come and trade our goods and research. Neither were you asked to conquer and annex the worlds that now make up your factions, to expand as you have done to be as strong as you are. But you have done it. How -dare- you resent and  attack the Dominion, whose expansion is but miniscule in comparison to what you already own? And the tiny sliver of space granted to us, the Tyranus starsystem, is our only vestige here in this quadrant. And so it shall remain, unless we are again provoked to react."

Poietes takes another step back and seats himself on the command dais. "But we are not without empathy for your situation, 'Voice of the Alpha Quadrant.' My people are ... xenophobic, I think, is your word for it. That is why the Vorta are on this screen, and not myself. Our people spent a thousand lifetimes being hunted and persecuted by solids, and as a consequence we are as trusting of you as you are of us, for no reason but that we are different. This xenophobia and mistrust has been the source of much of the conflict we have had with any of the people in this quadrant, but /we/ are willing to put it aside, as we have already stated. If the only answer from the people of the Federation and the Rihannsu is to fire torpedoes upon our starships and shout threats from the corwardly veil of annonymity, then you have decided our response. That Golden Scepter which thou didst reject will turn to an Iron Rod to bruise and break thy disobedience. Then, who created thee lamenting learn, and who can uncreate thee thou shalt know."

Poietes starts to turn away, but pauses. "Insist that we bring war upon your houses and you shall have your insistence form'd to reality. Allow us the opportunity for peace and you may be surprised."