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Ahmad Fazari

Formerly senior aide to Terra's spymaster, and now the Deputy Director of Intelligence.

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a character in “The Multiverse”, as played by Ylanne

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Originally formed after the Tripartite Occupation of Terra, the TNG once controlled all of Terra. Currently, the TNG's jurisdiction includes most of Terra's territory, but not the entire world.
Registered citizen of the Terran National Government

Description

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Photo credit: Eric Lafforgue. If you do not want your photo used here, kindly inform me and I will remove it promptly.

So begins...

Ahmad Fazari's Story

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#, as written by Ylanne
Ahmad Fazari offered a small smile in an eerie resemblance to Drulović's characteristic expression. "It was originally built in 1890 as a residence for a great lord. He left no heirs, and bequeathed the home to the son of a family friend, whose grandchildren donated it to our government," Ahmad explained. "Paradigm House is an excellent example of some of Terra's older architecture, although there aren't many such examples in Wing City anymore with recent modernizations." The driver pulled further into the parking garage, stopping beside two double doors with four men in uniform keeping watch. The doors clicked open. Ahmad unbuckled his safety belt and opened the door, climbing out of the limousine and holding the door open for the Azurians to exit. "I'm sure you will find it to your pleasing."

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Ahmad Fazari waited for the others to exit the limousine before quietly shutting the door. He inclined his head as the driver disappeared around a corner, leading the Azurians toward the officers at the door. At Ahmad's appearance, all four instantly snapped salutes, standing aside for the party to enter through the double doors. Ahmad nodded to the officers. "If you could inform the Minister that I'm here, I'd appreciate it, Corporal Taylor," he said to one of the soldiers, who immediately spoke in hushed tones into a microphone clipped to his shirt collar. Ahmad himself, now fully visible in the well-lit hallway, was wearing an earpiece cleverly designed to camouflage itself with his flesh inside the folds of his ear canal, and a flesh-colored microphone taped to his neck, half-hidden behind the collar of his dress shirt. Today, like most days, Ahmad was dressed in a well-tailored navy blue business suit and a patterned gold tie.

He strode across the marble floor, his heels clicking on the recently polished floor. The entire building had been cleaned and shone for Parliament's session on Friday, naturally, for the press. Parts of Government Center were still being reconstructed, but the dust and tarps were relegated to coroned areas away from the current, temporary locations of Ministry offices. Ahmad paused at a set of elevators, pushing the button to ascend. It glowed softly, and digital numbers over the golden rimmed frame ticked down from five to four... "The Ministry of Foreign Affairs is currently housed on the second floor, in the East Wing, where we are now standing," Ahmad said, his voice echoing a little in the decidedly empty hallways.

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Ahmad Fazari watched the little red numbers as they ticked down to one and then finally to the letter P1, for Parking Level One, where they were standing. The doors dinged open and Ahmad stepped inside, holding the elevator doors with his arm so the Azurians could enter. He slid a keycard into a slot beside a blinking red LED; once it turned green, his finger pressed the button for Level 2. The doors slid shut behind the three Azurians. Ahmad returned his keycard to his inner breast pocket and folded his hands in front of him as they waited. The elevator smelled faintly of some cleaning chemical, likely also leftover from preparations for Friday. The carpet was new, Ahmad's shoes leaving an impression among the maroon and gold designs.

The elevator moved swiftly upward, its golded doors opening to reveal a hallway mostly devoid of furniture, but spilling with people movied hurriedly through the hallways, most clutching smartphones or speaking into headsets, or carrying file folders. Drulović did, after all, insist that anyone communicating with her use old-fashioned paper for everything. And she had just been here, less than thirty minutes ago. Ahmad stepped out of the elevator first, again holding the door open for the three Azurians. "We'll be heading this way, Generals," he said once they had exited, turning toward two marble pillars marking the entryway to a long corridor. Other than the officials crossing paths in the atrium, there was a marked military presence. Conversations were hushed, and dozens of eyes darted in the direction of the visitors before quickly glancing away.

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Ahmad Fazari continued down the corridor, his heels clicking against the marble, in which all four of them could see distorted reflections of each of their figures contorting with their movements. At the sight of Ahmad leading the party, the stares stopped, gazes averting from a man recognized immediately by nearly anyone in the Terran government. Ahmad paused at a door marked with a plaque reading "FOREIGN AFFAIRS," and pushed it open, stepping into a carpeted, softly lit lobby with floor to ceiling windows looking out over Wing City's skyline. The receptionist, staring at something on her computer, started to mumble an automatic greeting when she glanced upward. Seeing Ahmad, she immediately straightened her posture and inclined her head. "Minister Ashkenazi will see you now, Mr. Fazari," she said, and Ahmad nodded.

"Thank you, Miss Patricio," he said to the receptionist, who watched intently as Ahmad led the three Azurians past her desk through a maze of offices. They passed several doors to offices and conference rooms, but the only furniture in the hall connecting them was a water bubbler with several cups attached. At the end of the hall, there was another set of double doors with a new plaque reading "THE HON. JONATHAN ASHKENAZI, MINISTER OF FOREIGN AFFAIRS" affixed to the wall beside the doorway. Ahmad knocked, and a soft, erudite voice responded, "Come in."

Ahmad's fingers closed around the cold golden doorknobs, and pushed the doors open, revealing a well-lit office with three east-facing windows, and a bearded man with long payot seated at a massive maplewood desk at one end of the room with several bookshelves behind him. Ashkenazi rose with the entrance of the Azurians, coming around his desk to extend a meaty hand first to Mirael with an inclination of the head. "Welcome to Terra, General," he said.

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Ahmad slipped quietly into the office behind the three Azurians, shutting the double doors for privacy. He took a seat in the back of the office, against the wall. Were any of the Azurians to look closely at the Arab man, the glint of metal was barely visible from the holster mostly hidden by his coat. Then again, Ahmad did work for the Intelligence Bureau.

"Thank you, General Hesin," Ashkenazi said, inclining his head as he shook each of the Azurians' hands, making brief but firm eye contact with each. "It is a pleasure to meet you, General Mirael and Second Lieutenant Haran." He gestured to the high-backed, overstuffed leather chairs in the office. "Please, have a seat. May I get you anything to drink or eat?"

The setting changes from terra to Main Street

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Ahmad Fazari found himself walking away from Government Center for about the seventh time in the last four hours. Dressed in a black suit and green tie and carrying a thin leather briefcase, Ahmad could have been any young lawyer or businessman visiting or working in Wing City. It was hot today. He could see the heat in waves if he looked at just the right angle or turned quickly to the left or the right. The sun burned into his suit, and moist lines of perspiration appeared around his crown. His fingers gripped the briefcase, which only had a few folded notes in it anyway. The Director entrusted him with her most personal assignments and needs.

Ahmad squinted up at the sun for a moment, its rays beating the sidewalk and metal structures along Main Street relentlessly, before continuing down Main Street, away from Government Center and toward wherever he had parked his car. You would have thought he would have remembered, but truth be told, he had been so distracted with Parliament's latest debates and their potential effect on the Bureau that he had somehow made it from home to Government Center without ever consciously parking. This was concerning.

He furrowed his brow, rubbing his fingers along his jawline. There was a bottle of water in the car, but it would be all hot now. Ahmad's phone rang, and he jerked forward, nearly letting go of the briefcase when he found himself careening directly into the path of a young woman whom he had only noticed subconsciously a minute or two ago.

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Ahmad Fazari laid his hand on Aerilyn's arm as he righted himself, grimacing. He shook his head. "I'm fine," he said, in a quiet tenor, "I'm sorry about running into you, miss." Ahmad took a step back, quickly removing his hand from the woman's arm. After all, he didn't know her, and he certainly wasn't related to her, and Ahmad didn't want anyone to make any accusations against either of them of suggestive behavior. "Please forgive me for my indiscretion. I apologize for interrupting what looks like it was a deep thought." He half-smiled, almost the way Drulović gave her small smiles.

Ahmad glanced down at his briefcase, and then looked back at Aerilyn, his soft brown eyes avoiding making direct eye contact. "But you are all right, miss? I'll apologize again for not paying attention to where I was going. My fault entirely."

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Ahmad Fazari shook his head insistently. "Never a lady's fault, miss," he said, inclining his head. "It was entirely and solely my fault for not watching where I was going. But perhaps," he said, his smile widening for a moment, "I can buy you a coffee to make up for it?" It didn't seem to occur to Ahmad that most normal people didn't care for hot coffee in the middle of summer. "There are a few nice places around here, despite all the publicity to the contrary."

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Ahmad Fazari blinked, his smile fading into a neutral expression, the one he had been taught to assume whenever confronted by adversity. That was, after all, what the Director had told him: Smile if you can; avoid showing any emotion if you can't. "Yemen, actually," he said, shifting his weight uncomfortably. "But if you don't want to take up the offer, it's fine. I'm sorry again for bothering you, miss." Ahmad's phone had stopped ringing by this time, whoever it was likely forwarded to his voicemail. He almost turned to go, but something pulled him back, gave him pause. Ahmad's gaze inspected the woman's face intently. "Are you sure you're all right?" he asked, and he wasn't talking about their collision.

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Ahmad Fazari 's expression softened a little. "I'm sorry," he repeated, compassion seeping into his voice unbidden. "It's obvious you've had some horrible experiences in the Middle East, and I'm sorry you had to go through whatever you did." For his part, his parents had taken him and left Al Hudaydah when he was twelve, shortly after the First Gulf Way in 1991. "I know there has been a lot of violence there in the last several decades."

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"Inna lillah wa inna illahi ar-rajiyun," Ahmad murmured, closing his eyes for a moment. "People will always use religion as an excuse for killing each other," he said. "It doesn't make it right. I'm sorry this happened to you -- to them. But I don't know the people who killed them, and I, well, I certainly wasn't one of them." His fingers shifted around the briefcase's handle, his palms having grown moist in the humidity.

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"My name is Ahmad," replied the young Arab man, his face coloring. He wasn't sure what else to say when his phone rang again, saving him from having to say anything. Ahmad slipped the phone into one hand, glancing at the caller ID. "It's the Director," he said, mostly to himself, debating whether it would be a good idea to ignore her call. Choosing not to answer for the moment (as she could always call again), Ahmad looked at Aerilyn again. "And no, all Muslims are not the same," he said, some semblance of confidence re-entering his voice. "I am not my father or neighbor or some jihadist on the news. And I'm certainly no chauvinist."

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Ahmad winced. "I'm sorry," he managed to say, unable to look away from the woman's scars. "I'm sorry this happened to you." Then he answered Drulović's call, putting the phone to his ear. "Fazari," he said crisply, although he wasn't quite able to keep the emotion from his voice. There was some unintelligible chatter on the other end, and then Ahmad said, "No, Director, I haven't compiled those reports yet." More chatter. "Yes, this is a secure line, for the thousandth time. I know you don't trust technology, but it's encrypted." There was another pause, and Ahmad squinted up at the sun for a moment. "Yes, Minister Khamtai wants to talk to you about coordinating counterterrorism efforts with Justice, but so does General Ranida. I scheduled you with the Minister for tomorrow and the General for tonight. You should receive an email with those times." Another pause, filled with more chatter. "Yes, I can get you a hard copy. But you know, you do kill a lot of trees." He bit his lower lip. "Yes, Director. I'll do that. Okay. Bye." He shut the phone, slipping it back into his pocket.

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Ahmad gave the woman a scorching look, disregarding all of the Director's advice. "You don't even know me," he said, old wounds now raw. "How can you judge me? Or claim to know how I feel? I'd rather see the wreckage than ignore it; it's better to feel than not to feel; even Drulović knows that." He shifted his weight, running his fingers along the lapel of his coat. "I don't know the people who did that to you, but I know their kind. They took my God-damned father, and you dare to accuse me of being like them? You don't know me!" He half-turned away, his eyes glittering in the sunlight.

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"I am not a terrorist!" said Ahmad, his eyes narrowing, bouncing a little on the balls of his feet. He couldn't recall being affected this much in years, if ever. Not at ignorant things other people said. But he'd tried remaining calm and rational, and Drulović and her unshakable tranquility be damned. The Director wasn't here. "And I am not an oppressor of anyone. I left Yemen because of people like Usama bin Ladin and Tahira Ali and my father; I am not them!" His voice was knotted by rage, at the very thought that someone would compare him to --

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"I don't even know you! I have never seen you before in my life! You don't know anything about me! You're only saying that because of people like my God-damned father!" Ahmad was now shouting, oblivious to the windows opening along the street, and people glancing at the two before hurriedly ducking indoors again. "He preached those vile, cursed lies, and he believed them too, the whole lot of them! Well, I won't let my father define me; I am not my father! He can rot in prison; the judge didn't have the balls to execute him!"

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Ahmad's sweaty fingers loosened on his briefcase, letting it slide to the ground beside his leg. His hands went to his temples, squeezing his eyes shut. "If they did that to you," he said, his voice tightening, "they'll be damned to eternity in hell. God damn them." He looked toward Aerilyn's feet now, completely unable to look her in the eye. This was his father's doing, his father and people like him. The rage fell from his voice. "I'm sorry," he repeated for probably the hundredth time, and this time, it was more than a polite expression.

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Ahmad took pause as Aerilyn collapsed. He couldn't blame her for her anger, not after what she'd gone through. The Director was right. Better not to allow oneself to be emotionally affected. It never did end well for anyone involved. Haltingly, Ahmad stooped beside her, offering his hand, palm turned upward and fingers outstretched. When he saw that her face was in her hands, he hesitated for several long moments, fearing violent reprisal, but then he reached for her shoulder, laying his hand gently there, attempting to communicate where he feared any words would fail.

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Ahmad let his hand slide away from her shoulder as she stood, the doors and windows that had opened mostly shutting now, curiosity giving way to embarrassment for the onlookers. "I'm sorry for letting my temper get the best of me," he mumbled, his cheeks coloring again at the thought of the Director learning about the verbal altercation. "I shouldn't have done that." He was surprised at himself, surprised he could still contain so much rage against Qaudir. Ahmad hadn't seen the old man in years and had no desire to visit him in prison.

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"Ahmad," he said, inclining his head, not particularly willing to give his last name for fear of being recognized as "That guy who's always with Drulović." Then again, Aerilyn had overheard his phone conversation with the Director. "It's always a pleasure to meet a lady," said Ahmad, shifting his weight again. He reached to take his briefcase back into his hand, wiping his brow with the other.

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"Oh, the Director can wait," said Ahmad. "Nothing is urgent with her. I don't need to see her until late tonight anyway. There's a nice place near here that she likes, a little cafe. They make good coffee." He inclined his head, seeming almost shy again. When outside the political arena, or the national security community, he tended to have that affect.

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"Certainly," said Ahmad, heading down Main Street toward Wing City Plaza. "I don't mean to intrude, but -- " He was about to ask her why she had been in the Middle East, but then realized, a little too late, that that had the potential of offending her further, and so he settled lamely for, " -- how long have you been in Wing City?"

The setting changes from main-street to Wing City Plaza

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Ahmad Fazari rolled his eyes. "That's why she's the Director and I'm her aide," he said, a small, uncertain smile forming on his lips. "And besides the Bureau? Well, I'm engaged to a beautiful young woman; we're going to be married in a few months." Ahmad continued to stroll along the street, the two eventually emerging in Wing City Plaza, where there were a few other government buildings. "We met back in college."

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"I studied Computer Science and Mathematics at Yale," said Ahmad, "and then I went to grad school at MIT for Nuclear Science and Engineering. That's where I got my PhD two years ago." He dipped his head as they walked. "I was lucky. I worked two jobs, and my mother worked three jobs to put me through school, on top of trying to pay my father's legal f -- and other things." He winced at the mention of his father, unaware he had even spoken the vile word until after it had escaped his mouth.

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"Or really dumb people whose mothers insist that they will be disowned if they don't," said Ahmad with a cheeky smile. "Don't feel dumb, though. My mother never finished high school, but she's one of the smartest women I know. Owns her own business now, has several thousand employees across the world, providing consulting and advocacy for learning disabled kids everywhere. She never remarried either, after divorcing."

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