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Ragnarok Omnibus

hawku001xhawku001x Member Posts: 10,527 Arc User
Just wanted to do a collection of all my U.S.S. Ragnarok entries, since they're scattered throughout Unofficial Literary Challenges, RPs, and other threads. This will post them chronologically.

Oroku Seifer loses his ship, the U.S.S. Phoenix-X, in "Nibiru, Parts I, II & III" before I moved him, temporarily, to the Earth Spacedock (RP) thread. From there, after some adventures with several other player's Captains, he's given command of the U.S.S. Ragnarok, and is moved off the RP to various other entry threads.

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  • hawku001xhawku001x Member Posts: 10,527 Arc User
    edited September 2020
    Author's notes: This follows the events of "Nibiru, Parts I, II & III", where the U.S.S. Phoenix-X was severely damaged by the Breen starship Darkseid, commanded by Seifer himself, and taken to the Kelvin-timeline alternate universe and back.


    Earth Spacedock #7

    Captain Oroku Seifer - Khao Sok Rainforest, Thailand

    The joined Trill Captain stalked through giant wet leaves and passed looping thick vines while he carried a long, sharpened bamboo stick. Somewhere, nearby, was the animal he had been tracking for the last 2 kilometers. In two seconds, a giant Klingon targ leapt out at him, causing him to fall back into a bush.

    "Seifer to guy who's in charge around here," he pulled himself off the ground and tapped his commbadge.

    A few seconds later, a Denobulan man transported next to him, smiling in a pleasant way. "Anything I can be assistance of?"

    "Why is there a targ on Earth? Isn't that illegal and harmful to the Earth's ecosystem? And for that matter, why'd you give me a pointy stick?"

    The Denobulan chuckled. "How do you expect to 'make the kill'? Oh, if you're interested, we also have Jackal mastiffs and, just yesterday, we recieved a Bardakian pronghorn moose!"

    "I actually would be interested in that, but I think I've been off duty for too long. I'm dying to get back to my starship, the Phoenix-X. Did I mention it?"

    Nodding and smiling, the Denobulan replied, "More than once, actually. You spoke of it in so much detail, I believe you missed the program initiation in which we taste tested the blood of a live kohlar beast. In the meantime, please be advised refunds are not allowed."

    "Put it on my tab; thanks!" Walking a few meters away, Seifer tapped his commbadge again. "Seifer to Spacedock. I need a report on a Prometheus-class starship currently in repair; the U.S.S. Phoenix-X?"

    Over air, he received a computer response. "Please be advised Spacedock communications are on hold."

    "What's going on up there?"

    The computer responded. "Please be advised Spacedock communications are on hold."

    "Ah. Classic. Well, I guess I could check it out, or finish this Earth targ hunt. Then again, I think they make us eat the targ. Spacedock it is."
  • hawku001xhawku001x Member Posts: 10,527 Arc User
    Earth Spacedock #10

    Captain Seifer - Earth Spacedock, Cargo Bay 12

    Seifer manned a workbee from Earth and secretly approached Spacedock. He aligned his vessel with a cargo port and overrode safety protocols to attach. Sneaking his way inside Cargo Bay 12, he was suddenly confronted with a Starfleet security officer.

    "Uh, what are you doing?" Reeve asked.

    Seifer snapped back at the other man's sudden appearance. "Whoa! Oh, I'm breaking onto the Spacedock to get to the bottom of whatever is going on here. Communications went down."

    "Well, they went back up a while ago, along with normal traffic," Reeve replied. "There was an Undine attack, but an unknown, uncleared, secret and powerful technology threw them all back into Fluidic Space. I'm sure it poses no risk to us." He then looked at the Captain. "Were you going to shoot me with that, sir?"

    Captain Seifer quickly put his aimed phaser behind his back. "What? No, I was just, uh, taking this to get repaired somewhere. Carry on, soldier."

    "Do you have clearance to be on base?"

    Seifer waved it away. "Pfft! Clearance is for the weak. I'll be at Club 47 to investigate various things there."
  • hawku001xhawku001x Member Posts: 10,527 Arc User
    Captain Oroku Seifer - Earth Spacedock, Shipyard

    Seifer approached Commander Barnes, an older Benzite and Starfleet officer.

    "A martini?" Barnes said, noticing the drink in the Captain's hands.

    The Trill put his drink aside. "Oh; just came from the Synthbar. It's so strange they put that place on the same deck as all the important stuff. Well, convenience, I guess."

    "If you're looking for your Prometheus-class U.S.S. Phoenix-X, I'm sorry to inform you that it's severely damaged and we're at a crossroads at if we can ever repair it."

    Seifer dropped his arms. "How could this be? We have the best Engineers in the Federation!"

    "Your vessel was hit by a Breen dissapator, twice! By you, no doubt," Barnes explained. "By the way, your Breen ship, the Darkseid is docked as well, though, that ship was already running like a garbage scowl's cargo."

    The Captain nodded. "Well, it did traverse a blackhole to an alternate universe and back." He then looked to the side in realization. "This means I don't have a ship?"

    "It's better this way. The Phoenix-X was an old vessel, even if it did help usher in transwarp technology. I'm sorry to report, but your crew is being reassigned as well."

    Seifer wiped the sweat from his brow. "Oh, finally. They were the literal worst."

    "Uh," Barnes just looked at him, in shock.

    Recovering, Seifer finished, "The worst at being horrible! I mean, I'm going to miss them. Heh. Heh! Well, I have to go hijack the Phoe-- err, I mean, say goodbye to the Phoenix-X. Turns out the bottle smashing ceremony works both ways."
  • hawku001xhawku001x Member Posts: 10,527 Arc User
    Captain Oroku Seifer - Earth Spacedock, Shipyard Docking Port 25, Corridor

    Through the windows peering into the internal shipyard of Spacedock, Seifer could see the damaged U.S.S. Phoenix-X. Workbees and suited engineers were performing repairs all over the outer hull, but the Captain knew its operation was in far less condition.

    "If you're wondering whether it'll fly again, the answer is maybe," came the nearby comment of a female Engineer. "Lieutenant Winry," she introduced herself. "I'm on the team assisting with the Phoenix-X's mothballing."

    Seifer dropped his shoulders in disappointment. "Damn. Any chance I can take it out for one last spin? Maybe pit it against a few Na'Khul?"

    "If we weren't on lockdown, you probably could, and the ship isn't going to be completely decomissioned, but I wouldn't recommend it. The underlying charge from the Breen dissipator is embedded into its systems. Overuse of the ship could destroy it."

    The Captain leaned against the window. "She was a good ship, with a good crew. I'll keep her in drydock for as long as Starfleet will let me."

    "They'll want to keep it as a test subject for sustaining Breen weaponry. That, and several Academy Engineering courses will want to field trip it as a 'how not to run a ship' lesson. Did I mention, the Corps Engineers were sending pictures of your ship to each other on their lunch break? Anyway, think you'll get another one?"

    Seifer sighed. "Plenty of letters left in the alphabet."

    "Uh, not really. If the Phoenix is at X, there are only two."

    He turned to address her. "Oh, good point. Well, they ran through like twenty four Phoenix-named ships in a short time, in a desperate attempt at perfecting transwarp technology. Anyhow, would you mind smashing this bottle of Chateau Picard on its hull for me?"

    "I don't think you do that for mothballing."

    Seifer looked at the bottle, before taking it with him. "Yeah, never mind. I'll drink it later."
  • hawku001xhawku001x Member Posts: 10,527 Arc User
    Earth Spacedock #11

    Captain Oroku Seifer - Earth Spacedock, Food Court

    Seifer took a few stabs at his monochrome plate of bland, cold, uneaten potatoes. The replicator-peeled vegetable slipped under misplaced fork-pressure and spun off the table onto the floor. In his heart, he knew he would have his revenge against that particular food item. In no way did he ever intend on letting that little inanimate spud go without a taste of his vengeance. Oh, he would spend the rest of his life, plotting and scheming the most elaborate and harsh--

    "--Well, well. How the mighty have fallen," came the interrupting voice of an old, Vulcan man, from behind Seifer. "Do you plan on staring at your mess all day, or are you going to pick it up?"

    Turning, in shock, Seifer came to perceive his old Vulcan teacher from Starfleet Academy. "Master Chivaul??"

    "You've become weak, Oroku. Where once you commanded one of Starfleet's most over-powered, uber ships of incomprehensibly small scale, now, you sit in this pale and unforgiving food court with nothing to show for it."

    Seifer shook his head in disbelief. "Uh, I saved my crew from that horrible Calibus VII sickness, and stopped the cross-dimensional Nibiru from reconfiguring our space-- Not that that hadn't been done before. Mine was just more recent."

    "Fulfilled with accomplishment, you are entitled to magnificence and respect. Your lack of position is a betrayal to you and what you have done in the past."

    Pointing, Seifer replied, "You know what? You have always been rude and mean to me, with no explanation whatsoever; for what I can only assume is because I stuck with you until the bitter end, and--"

    "You talk too much!" Chivaul knocked Seifer's pointing arm away and launched a claw-posed hand right at the Trill's face.

    Grabbing the wrist of the incoming attack, shocked, Seifer was forced to use his other arm to knock a second incoming hand, this time, toward his throat. The old Vulcan twisted Seifer's grip free and jabbed both his fists, forward again. Seifer, while seated, shot both his feet up and kicked the fists away. He kicked again toward Chivaul's chest, where his foot was met with blocking palms, with enough force to push the old man back a few steps.

    "Oh, real mature, you decrepit old Vulcan!" Seifer responded before noticing a few officers nearby standing up from their meals and looking at them in shock. The Captain quickly got out of his seat and addressed the food court. "--Uh, it's nothing, everyone; this senior is just looking for his meds. Poor guy can't even go to the bathroom without--"

    But Chivaul force-palmed Seifer in the face, then quadruple-jabbed the Trill in the chest, before a second palm with force toward the same spot. The Captain grabbed the incoming wrist with both hands, softening the blow as much as he could, before being knocked right over his table and onto the floor, next to the potato.

    "This is all your fault," Seifer turned to the spud in shifting anger. "If only you let me eat you, instead of this run-around, we wouldn't be in this m--"

    The old fighting Vulcan, showing no emotion, flew over the table with an incoming foot of immense force. Seifer quickly wondered if picking up the potato would be metaphor enough to stop his old teacher. Unfortunately, he had to roll away from it to live. Chivaul landed his intense stomp, while, Seifer, still on his back, flung kick after kick at Chivaul. Each kick was blocked by the Vulcan's even faster-moving left foot.

    "I-- told-- you---! No visitors-- before-- nap time--" Seifer said in mid-fight, noticing the shocked look of confused faces around him. Chivaul leapt another downward-forced foot, prompting Seifer to decide to roll underneath him, toward the potato.

    Seifer picked up the food, got up and placed it on a table. Chivaul, after landing and turning his position to face the Captain, stopped his attack and continued his unemotional repertoire. "Meet me in the Holodeck to finish this."

    "Should I bring your ointment??" Seifer replied, unimpressed, as Chivaul walked his way through the sea of tables out of the food court. The Captain dusted his Odyssey uniform off and noticed an Ensign looking at him with wide-eyed disbelief. "He has a skin thing."
  • hawku001xhawku001x Member Posts: 10,527 Arc User
    Earth Spacedock #14

    Captain Oroku Seifer - Earth Spacedock, Holodeck 3

    The doors to the simulation environment from the corridors swooshed open and Seifer stood at its threshold, steaming in short tempered anger. It was completely out-of-character for him, but when it came to his Starfleet Academy teacher, who he called Master Chivaul, things were different.

    "Alright, you stringy old Vulcan," he opened as he stepped inside and took a fighting stance. "Let's finish this."

    On the floor, in an old Earth training dojo program, Chivaul sat, cross-legged in his robes, meditating. His eyes remained closed, not even acknowledging Seifer for a few moments. "Sit down," he ordered.

    "What? I thought we were going to punch this one out?" Seifer widened his eyes in confusion.

    Chivaul waited patiently until Seifer hesitantly took a seat on the floor opposite of the Vulcan. "Your mind is on fire, and I don't need to meld with you to know it. Before we fight, you must clear yourself of all emotions, like I taught you."

    "Ugh," Seifer rolled his eyes. "Not this again. Fine."

    The Vulcan opened his eyes to watch Seifer fall into practice. In not too long a time, Seifer's heart rate had settled and his breathing had come to pace. "Are you ready?"

    "Yes, Master Chivaul," Seifer opened his eyes almost a completely new person, calm and nearly expressionless.

    Chivaul propped himself up by his arms, lurched out his feet and swung them around at Seifer. Expecting this, Seifer blocked both ankles with both his forearms and shoved the legs away from him. The two quickly jumped to their feet, took stances and began flinging fast-paced jabs, blocks and redirects at each other.

    "I've got nothing left," Seifer explained, sampling his previous emotions. "I lost the Phoenix-X, and my crew. I've been stuck here for a week with delayed word from Command, and I'm going crazy, talking to my food. All I know is nothingness now."

    Seifer caught Chivaul's left arm and flung a kick to his chest. The Vulcan caught the leg and used his superior strength to anchor the Trill by it and throw him around. Seifer went flying into a holographic pillar, landing on his feet.

    "My pupil, there is something I do not commonly speak about," Chivaul began as he approached Seifer and launched a forced-palm at his head. Seifer dodged it and Chivaul's palm broke through the wooden pillar, sending debris out in one direction. "Oroku, before I knew you, I once lost everything as well, in the form of my death."

    Shocked to hear this, Seifer's reaction time slowed and he was kicked in the chest in another direction. The Trill was sent through a nearby paper-made wall and into another room to his back. Chivaul stepped through to join him. "You died?"

    "In that time, I knew what it truly meant to be nothing. Upon my return, I understood that we all come from emptiness and fulfillment is not our destiny, but only part of a greater truth. Our base state is nothingness, and your existence is therein."

    He reached out his hand to help Seifer off his feet. The Captain accepted and they stood next to each other. "I think I understand. My losses, though harsh, are really my return. Thank you, Master."

    "You're welcome, Oroku. I sensed you were in trouble, so I traveled to Spacedock to help you," Chivaul nodded, in his calm way.

    Seifer, appreciative, also shook his head. "You must be older than I thought. If you don't mind my asking, how'd you survive?"

    "A lesson for another time," Chivaul reassured before the simulation suddenly flickered on and off a few times.

    When Seifer turned back, he found that he was alone. The Vulcan fighting master was no where to be seen. Confused, the Captain walked over to a control panel and turned off the program. He looked around the grey-meshed holodeck to confirm that no one was there.

    "What!? He was a hologram??" Seifer said, shocked. "Uggh! Chivaul's going to get an ear-full as soon as I contact him, wherever he is." The Trill left the holodeck and exited to the corridors.
  • hawku001xhawku001x Member Posts: 10,527 Arc User
    Author's notes: This skips ahead several events in Earth Spacedock (RP) where Seifer shares story with other player Captains.


    Earth Spacedock #25

    Captain Oroku Seifer - Infirmary, Earth Spacedock

    As the Infirmary was being emptied out of its excess patients, Seifer was just finishing up treatments for his flesh wounds. The trip back from Caldos III had been so much faster than the trip there, that he wondered if Edward was just toying with everyone beforehand.

    "Everything checks out with you, sir," reported Lieutenant Cetra. "You'll be free to go in a few minutes."

    Seifer looked on as Lydia had been screaming in sheer madness at the comatose Elihu M'Konel for what seemed like hours. The sound rang through in his ears. "Wow. That is some messed up family stuff."

    "Trauma comes with the territory when dealing with complex inter-personal relationships augmented by the vicious actions of unclear entities," she said, passively as she healed his hand with a dermal regenerator.

    Confused, the Captain replied. "Yes? Anyway, doesn't all this bother you, since you're a Betazoid?"

    "Actually, I've always injected myself with a compound that suppresses my empathy. All my life, I've been unable, nor willing, to deal with the pounding headache of telepathic power." She wrapped up and patted him in the shoulder.

    Seifer smirked. "Yeah, those are the worst. Anyway, it looks like you're stuck here on Spacedock with all this convolution like I am. I know how stale it can get. If I hear about any deep space assignments befitting a nurse, I'll let you know."


    Main Concourse

    Stepping out into the main concourse, Seifer was met with Captain Aeris. He had skimmed her report of her time in fluidic space and was amazed that she survived.

    "It's been a long time, Captain," Seifer said.

    Aeris crossed her arms. "It could have been longer. But it was only after my time with Kohogeth, in the past, that I was eventually boarded by the Tal'Shiar on what I've come to learn were orders by Toreth. They wanted to know everything we did of the Undine."

    "Now she's captured. A gift from someone, perhaps. Are you going to go into the Brig and beat her to a bloody pulp?"

    The woman did a double-take. "What kind of a monster do you think I am? I dealt with my emotional reaction to that long ago. It was only Elihu's telepathic attack on me that regressed it out of my subconscious." She looked at him. "Anyway, the Zephyra is just as out-of-commission as your old ship, the Phoenix-X. I could crew it and fly it, but the damage by that Undine protoplasm makes it unfit for prolonged use."

    "Drydock's getting full," Seifer realized.

    She laughed to herself. "At least you're getting re-assigned. They told me to tell you that you've got a new ship, finally."

    "What!?"

    Aeris gave him a PADD. "Congratulations, Captain; the U.S.S. Ragnarok is yours. It's a Pathfinder-class starship modified with Discovery-class pylons."

    "This is amazing!!" Seifer took the PADD and rushed through its stats. "Sure, it's not as powerful as some, but I can finally get off this cesspool dump-- err, I mean, wonderfully constructed space mushroom?"

    The other Captain waved him off. "It's fine. I'm stuck here until they find me a new ship too now. But, this time, after what I did in bringing the disappeared crew back, they won't keep me locked down here anymore. I'll be just as free as you, soon."

    "Good to hear, Aeris," Seifer complimented. "I'll be recruiting that Engineer you were with in Undine space, by the way. Lieutenant Winry sounds brilliant."

    Shocked and insulted, Aeris dropped her arms. "You jerk?? Now I don't want to divulge the second piece of news I was going to bring to you!"

    "The Infamous was responsible for everything malicious that's been done up to this point?"

    She shook her head as she directed his gaze to their left. "No, Winry and I brought back your old fighting teacher, Chivaul, from fluidic space."

    "Master Chivaul??" Seifer turned to see the old, greying Vulcan standing afar in wait to speak to him. He had thought he'd never see him again, and had already dealt with the effects of losing his own father-figure. The Trill turned back to Aeris, preferring the cognitive dissonance to the alternative. "Thank you, Captain."

    Aeris smiled. "Sure." She watched as Seifer went off to speak to the man. Her duties now lay elsewhere, so she left as well.
  • hawku001xhawku001x Member Posts: 10,527 Arc User
    Ragnarok #1

    Tabletop Beginnings

    Captain Oroku Seifer spent the better part of his morning at the Synthbar located within Earth Spacedock's Club 47. But instead of drinking martinis, he had several PADDs in a mess before him, working on a few at a time.

    "Can I just ask you something?" approached the El Aurian bartender who had already made a big deal about Seifer not drinking and taking up bar space. "Why couldn't you just compress all your data into one device? What is the point?"

    Seifer looked up, aimlessly, and in momentary realization that the bartender was speaking again. "Huh? Oh, the point is that's how we Starfleet officers organize our information. Sure, there's a minor strain on bulkhead material resources, but the more PADDs, the more clutter, the more Starfleet one is! It's well-established, standard officer tradition, actually." And then, a second realization, "Bartender! Another PADD!"

    "Ugh," Nelan moaned as he turned away to replicate one more, finally giving up on freeing that spot.

    Commander Allura, in command of Spacedock's operations division, approached the bar and sat next to Seifer. "Congratulations on your new command, Captain; that of the U.S.S. Ragnarok," she said by way of exposition and greeting.

    "Thanks," Seifer answered, pleasantly surprised by the blind Aenar's presence. "I've been finalizing the paperwork for my new Bridge officers. Much of it crossing t's and dotting i's as is the style of this incomplete font we're using now."

    She nodded. "It was implemented as punishment for our reluctance to arrest Sela after the Iconian War. What we were on, I will never know." Then, "Oh, and by the way, you're taking up bar space when you should be working in an office, or, at least your ship's Ready Room."

    "Since I've been grounded and working here at Spacedock by the malfunction of my old ship, hit by two Breen dissapators, I've come to think of this place as a second home. I know this station is massive, but it turns out all 1000 guest offices are currently being used by equal segmented groups of an Evora delegation."

    After Allura was handed a drink, she slammed it on the table for dramatic effect. "Damn! What the Evora lack in height, they make up for in pure, unrelenting numbers. The truth is, they're here for another head-bead ritual, only, this time, the entire station has to partake in it."

    "Phew! Perfect timing, since I'll be heading out into sectorized space with the Ragnarok soon. I skipped my ship and crew inspection due to excitement-paralyzation. That's a thing in this century, you know."

    The Aenar gestured to what she sensed as two Tellarites in a single trench coat, one standing on the shoulders of another, both behind Seifer. "This is our seat, buddy!" the double man argued; both completely identical.

    "Tomsin and Tomsin??" Seifer turned in shock and surprise. "I thought you were reassigned to the Valhalla?"

    The bottom Tellarite grumbled in his own realization at whom he had just encountered. "They wouldn't accept us as a single officer, claiming we were two separate entities now!"

    "Captain, please don't tell me you had something to do with this?" Allura interrupted.

    Seifer began stacking his PADDs neatly for a possible quick exit. "Well, after more of the overtly dark, unaided whodone-it mystery from the attack at Caldos III, Starfleet wanted me to focus back on the science and weirdness of our original theme. As usual, the Admirals took excitement in the 'return to our roots' thing— an odd obsession of theirs— and when I attempted to initiate artificial atmospheric distortions in a small patch of Earth's atmosphere to lure anaphasic lifeforms, a transporter confinement beam, whence doubled, containing Tomsin, interacted with it and Riker-duplicated the Tellarite back to Earth's surface."

    "And we would've been able to live a normal life if Seifer hadn't promised us a position on Admiral Cid's ship! Now we've got no where to go and our acts of illegally boarding the Valhalla are on our permanent records!" the top Tomsin argued.

    The bottom Tomsin added, "Yeah! And the duplicate thing too."

    "Hey! You'd better watch how you speak to a superior officer, Ensigns!" argued Seifer, annoyed.

    Top Tomsin slammed his drink down on the table next to the Captain in yet another dramatic effect. "Well, we've been drinking, so our aggressiveness is easily excused through a bar-based social paradigm! How many have you had, sir?"

    "Err," Seifer looked at his space, which contained PADDs and no drink as not preferred, apparently. He saw no way to play into the suggested cliché. Instead, he pointed at the seemingly unmoving line to the club's lavatories by way of distraction. "Whoa! Did they just move up one!?!"

    Both Tomsins, actually interested in that, turned in hopes to witness, when Seifer suddenly took the opportunity to activate an emergency transport unit he had held in his hand this whole time. Allura sensed and heard the dematerialization beam take Seifer away.

    ---

    Meanwhile, on the Bridge of the Pathfinder-class, with Discovery-class pylons, U.S.S. Ragnarok, the new crew had just finished preparing everything and all systems for departure. Seifer beamed in, unexpectedly, and took his place at the center.

    "We have to exit immediately. No time to explain! Just trust me whoever you all are!" he commanded in a general non-direction at who-knows who.

    Aramaki walked over and handed him a duty roster PADD. "Admiral Cid used his connections and had two Ensigns, a Tomsin and Tomsin, transferred to us before we were to leave. Just waiting on that before we go."

    Suddenly the tactical officer's console beeped, confirming another transport.

    "Oh, that should be them!" Aramaki confirmed, happily. "Yes, we're ready to go now. Shall we, Captain? We polished the holo-consoles and everything. Not that they needed to be polished, since they're holographic."

    Caught, suddenly mis-sorted, Seifer lost his train of thought and patience, quickly. "Uggh! Those guys again?? Can't I be one of those Captains that just runs away from things? We literally don't have any Captains that do that." And then, "Well. I suppose it's going to be up to me to be a different kind of Starfleet commanding officer, completely off from the Picards and Kirks of the past! All of a sudden, I no longer feel that combo excitement-paralyzation syndrome my old chief medical officer, Doctor Lox, diagnosed me with. I'm just left with just the excitement."

    "Should I have the Tomsins meet you on the Bridge for assignment?"

    Captain Seifer just waved it off. "Just post them in a corridor somewhere. In the meantime, I'm going to replicate myself a celebratory martini. It would seem our adventure, to hopefully be accompanied by a powerful orchestra-based melody, is just beginning! Seifer out."

    Since he wasn't on comms to begin with, he just turned and headed to his Ready Room. The 25th century, in whatever fashion he would be meant to find it in, was now his to command.
  • hawku001xhawku001x Member Posts: 10,527 Arc User
    Ragnarok #2

    Department Heads

    The Pathfinder-class with Discovery-class pylons U.S.S. Ragnarok trekked through space, aimlessly and haphazardly. Captain Oroku Seifer met with his senior staff in the ship's briefing room. Everyone's attention settled and turned to the Joined Trill.

    "Now, I'd like to go around the table and have everyone introduce themselves and say one thing interesting about you," ordered Seifer.

    Lieutenant Commander Winry, Human and chief engineer, raised her hand. "Sir, permission to not engage in such a lame exercise?"

    "It's not lame. Captain Shon of the Enterprise-F did the exact same thing, he told me once, while smirking, at a party," defended Seifer.

    Lieutenant Edward, Human and helm operator, added her own remark. "Yeaaah, it's a little dumb."

    "Uh, it's not that bad," Lieutenant Commander Aramaki, Human and tactical officer, interjected. "It's a way for us to get to know each other. Am I right, Cetra?"

    The telepathically suppressed Betazoid and ship's Doctor, replied, "I don't care. I just want this conversation over with."

    "Ugh!" Everyone then looked over to the science officer and Caitian, Lieutenant Commander Moggs, who, instead of adding to the discussion, coughed up a hairball. "Ack! Sorry. Note: Do not have the replicated soufflé after a self-bath."

    Seifer waved all the kafuffle away. "No, no. You guys are completely right. It's the poster child of annoying team exercises. I move we all look up each other's profiles on the Federation social media network. All those in favor?"

    "Aye!" the rest of the group rung in unison.

    The Captain activated the presentation screen behind them and brought up everyone's entrance test results. "Next item on our list, your aptitude numbers. Now, I know there is only so much one person is capable of, but we have to compete with other ships and then gloat about it in their faces, a-la LaForge and his warp engine addiction."

    "Aptitude, sir? Is that really necessary? We all aspire to be more than the sum of our parts— that is, our organic parts," said Winry, trying not to subconsciously mimic an android.

    The Captain nodded. "Although we have only been together for a short time, I know that you are the finest crew in the fleet and I would trust each of you with my life."

    "That is crazy. How would you even just know that out of nowhere unless you’ve been time traveling? Are you saying you’re from the future, Captain?" asked Moggs.

    Seifer crossed his arms defensively. "I very well could be. Would that make you comply? Is time travel still fresh and new to you?"

    "Quite the opposite, sir. I feel like it's been done to death, gone back into the past, and done to death again," argued Winry.

    Aramaki nodded. "Actually, I would interject that it's gone into the future, seen its death, and tried to reassert itself in the past."

    "Okay, that's enough. Time travel is never dead. Never so long as there's a selfish desire to crossover things!" the Captain refuted.

    Winry continued. "But that's just it; the self-indulgent use of it has only now soured our tastes and any such mention of going forward or back is anything but exciting."

    "I suppose I used to think just like you, recoiling at the thought of a quick jump or temporal reset. But, in my dragging days or weeks aboard Spacedock— I don't even know— without a ship, I've grown to appreciate the access we now have to such madness. Together we can make it fresh again!" Seifer preached.

    Edward pulled out an ancient alien statue out from underneath the table and placed it on the top for everyone to see. "Ahhhh, fresh like this?"

    "Sir??" Doctor Cetra said. "Are you pro-time-travel because you couldn't figure out this really old artifact?"

    Seifer looked at the turn of events, perplexed. "Huh? Oh, somewhat. But that's a statue from the Verath system. It's a depiction of one of their sub-ossemites. Captain Terry acquired it before he blew himself up during my Spacedock days."

    "It appears to be eating a baby ossemite," observed Moggs.

    The Captain tilted his head. "Wait. You know about this stuff?"

    "Ehhh, I don't know about you guys," started Winry, "But I eat ancient architecture papers for breakfast; helps with engine indigestion. This Verathan top likely rotates to align one of the three sub-ossemite statue sides with the baby at its bottom."

    Moggs pointed. "That baby's head looks like a bilitrium jewel. It's a highly powerful mineral."

    "Well, yeah, actually, the Verathan inscriptions on its side depict the baby as a power source," Seifer explained. "I suspected the second sub-ossemite to be the power consumer, so I switched it to him before you all entered the briefing room."

    Aramaki leaned in to take a look. "You would be correct, had the second one been wearing the energy symbol, but according to what we know of their upper-class society, sometimes their energy responsibilities lay with the third sub-ossemite."

    "Of course!" Seifer snapped his fingers. "Wait. You study anthropology?"

    The tactical officer shrugged. "It ties into behavioral performance. That, and there's this smoking hot Tellarite chick who's into it too."

    "Well, I'm not going to comment on that last part, but your logic is perfectly acceptable, I assume," Seifer agreed.

    Everyone watched as the Captain took the statue and rotated the upper half until the side with the third sub-ossemite aligned with its open mouth over the jewel-headed baby. The object then started to emanate a low-level glow from its cracks, and the baby's head began to emit hovering, short-range clumps of energized matter.

    "Something inside of that thing activated the bilitrium," reported Moggs as he scanned with his tricorder. "Harmful radiation levels are rising."

    Seifer placed his commbadge onto it. "Captain to transporter room. Lock on to my signal and beam it out into space."

    "Right away, sir! Except, I can't get a lock due to some kind of interference," Ensign Khalid answered over air. "Huh. I guess any of us can fall victim to the 'some kind of' trope after all."

    The Captain took his commbadge back and unsuccessfully rotated the statue, whilst perplexed. "Why'd they make a device that powers up like this?"

    "Uhhh, huh. Worship reasons, me thinks," spoke up a quirky Lieutenant Edward. "Yep. I know religions. You offer your statue praise. Praise it; yes!"

    Cetra sighed. "There was once a supposed Verathan event where massive offerings of flower pedals, native to their planet, was unloaded at one of their power-shrines." Then, to explain: "Doctor and occasional history buff. Don't ever ask me why."

    "A Saurian flower comes close to what some botantists believed was the molecular construct of Verathan flowers," offered Moggs. "Though, there wasn't much by way of confirming this."

    Seifer put the statue on the table and went over to the replicator. "Well, there is now. Anyone want a coffee or tea while I'm up here?"

    "Sir, the radiation will pass the kill-us threshold within seconds," continued Cetra. "Seconds!"

    The Captain nodded at her over-acting as he brought the replicated flower before the statue. The matter around it then began to fade and the flower started to wither.

    "Levels dropping," reported Moggs, who then eyed the flower. "Anyone going to eat that?"

    Winry sat up. "You know, we could have all just gotten up and left the room. Basic Survival 101."

    "In the middle of a briefing?? That's crazy talk, Winry," argued Aramaki. "That goes on our permanent records, you know."

    Seifer sat down and examined the statue. Its glow completely faded. "Fascinating. Since it only took one flower, this thing could be a mini-home version of something much larger; perhaps something at that event Cetra mentioned."

    "Captain, you were right about the madness," offered Winry. "Perhaps such things are worth it after all."

    The Trill put the statue down. "And we make a pretty good team. —Computer! Delete the crew's aptitude information."

    "Acknowledged," the computer chirped. "Crew academic records deleted from the Federation-wide database."

    Aramaki threw up his hands. "Now we'll never be able to transfer to another ship!"

    "Is that all for this meeting, sir?" asked Winry. "Are we ever going to do space stuff?"

    Seifer changed the presentation screen. "Well, there is this request from a Deferi colony world for Starfleet assistance. But I told them to stop being whiny babies. Now that we're a well-oiled machine, we can say those things."

    "Oooh! Gonna make ship go, go, go!" Edward sat up, excited.

    The Captain rolled his eyes. "Oh, alright. We'll go check it out. But after that, you all have to develop a poker routine, where I come in at the end of seven years and you all love it."

    "Fine. But no time travel, ever," bargained Winry. "Especially if that's the result of your planned-poker-reluctance."

    Seifer sat uneasy. "Uggh. I guess. But you'd all better have an unrelenting affection for me by the end of it all." Then he turned to the crew, excited for the future and their adventures. "Dismissed!"
  • hawku001xhawku001x Member Posts: 10,527 Arc User
    Ragnarok #3

    Neutrality for Beginners

    The Pathfinder-class, with Discovery-class nacelles, U.S.S. Ragnarok approached the small Deferi colony world of Covalesence. There, a Breen Sarr Theln warship, the Leinstien, stood in orbit staring down the forlorn colonists in anger.

    Captain Oroku Seifer sat in his chair on the Bridge, observing the visual. "They always seem so menacing. Or, is that just me anthropomorphizing a ship with attitude? Because I've done that before. I once characterized a smaller Klingon Bird of Prey as 'cute and precious', but it turned out their disrupter shots stung like a bee. I don't know how, but I had red marks on my skin for weeks."

    "ZZKRRTTSDDDDKKkKrrrrRRkkT!" came the angry hail from Relk Marcel over the viewscreen. "VVKKRRTTzzzkkkkdddDD!"

    Seifer was taken aback. "Uh, wow. Could you be any ruder? Anyway, do you know that you are impeding upon the freedom of having empty space around a planet to the Deferi? That is a thing many species find annoying. Also, atmospheric hygiene, man; think before you idle."

    "MMDDKKKSSZZZZZzzzEERrRRRK!" Marcel said. "VEVVEEERRKk! KkdddDDDKRRT!"

    The Trill shrugged. "Obviously you don't know anything about cats, because a cat would never do what you are suggesting. At least, none of the Android-owned ones."

    "VVRRRKT! KRGGGTTVV!?" the Breen argued.

    Seifer nodded. "That is certainly something we can agree on; the Dominion War was clearly well done. If anything, it was one of the best wars ever and the viewers loved it. Anyway, Ragnarok out."

    "Captain, I didn't have my universal translator aligned," the tactical officer and Human, Lieutenant Aramaki, admitted as soon as the screen cut off. "What did he say?"

    Oroku Seifer shook his head. "That he would never choose Picard over Kirk. I mean, who does that? I think the choice is clear. Diplomacy and calmness is the epitome of high road."

    "Uh, I think we'd like to know what he said about his position over the planet. They are clearly overstepping their boundaries," the science officer and Caitian, Lieutenant Commander Moggs, corrected. "And the answer is Kirk."

    Rolling his eyes, Seifer replied. "Well, we'll talk about that. As for the Breen, they said they can do whatever they want because that's just how they operate. I couldn't argue too much with that logic, because their claimed track record on said operation was quite accurate."

    "Gonna speak to the Deferi? Huh? Huh?" perked the helmswoman and human, Lieutenant Edward.

    Seifer pointed at her. "I like the way you think! Let's do that thing you said; whatever it was. Ice cream?" And then. "No; that's right, the colonists."

    ---

    Seifer, Aramaki and Moggs transported down to the outdoor 'welcoming area' at the centre of the Deferi town. There, they were greeted by a Deferi leader named Cassen.

    "You are both welcome and not welcome here. We lean neither one way nor the other," he said with open arms, before he realized how even that would be perceived as over-welcoming.

    Seifer crossed his own arms. "Uh, you sent us a distress signal, so why wouldn't you be pleased to see us?"

    "My feelings over the response of such a signal are neither positive nor negative. But, yes, you see, the Breen have been bullying us and won't go away."

    The Captain nodded. "Any idea why?"

    "We believe it to be our neutral nature, which invites aggressiveness in the most negative of forms from any neighbouring species."

    Then Seifer asked, "Well, what about positive interactions? Wouldn't a non-leaning, greyed-out attitude invite an equivalent measure of friendship and camaraderie?"

    "That seems impossible, since the galaxy is currently being permeated by a pessimistic fourth dimensional energy force," Cassen explained.

    Nodding, Seifer said, "Ah, the Q put that there as a joke. It's been hanging around a while. Anyway, I'll see what I can do about the Breen. But they were very convincing to me about their need to stay here, and I'd be hard-pressed to confront people so clearly better than us."

    "But, but...?"

    Captain Seifer laughed. "Just kidding. We'll destroy them for you. It's a new Starfleet thing we do."

    ---

    Upon retreating with his group, Seifer, Aramaki and Moggs came to convene off to the side of the town square with themselves.

    "Thoughts?" the Captain asked.

    The tactical officer replied, "I kind of agree with the Breen. Might as well bully the weak while you can. I mean, you only live once."

    "We could take their quadrotriticale grain while we're at it," Moggs added. "It's quite delicious."

    Seifer shook his head. "No, I mean how to defeat the Breen! You know we can't go back on decisions we've already committed to; it's counter-productive, and that, more than anything, is what we need to maintain. Oh, and ethical behaviour of a certain measure, I suppose. Nothing too outrageous."

    "Right!" Aramaki agreed. "Well, we could fire upon the Leinstien, thus proving who has the biggest torpedo tube. We have a science ship, but I think it's not about size, but, rather, how you use it that matters."

    Moggs turned to him. "Might I remind you, the Prime Directive prevents us from interfering with the development of substandard cultures, and the Deferi are, well, I don't want to get nasty, but, well, you know; implications by tangent statements and all."

    "What? They're the filth of Quadrant? Might I remind you, that you clean yourself using your tongue?" Seifer accused.

    The Caitian pointed at him. "That has never been proven, nor is that appropriate commentary from upper management! Now, where do we take our midday nap?" Then, admitting, "I need to, uh, lick... something unrelated."

    "How about we focus on the Breen? Apparently, they are in a perpetual state of searching for Preserver technology: The technology of the people who directed the formation of all humanoid life in our galaxy."

    Seifer thought for a moment. "So, creationism is our thing and not evolution?"

    "Now that you say it out loud, it sounds ridiculous!" Moggs said. "Anyway, should we not just ask and/or follow them?" He redirected his perpetual pointing finger at a group of Breen transporting into a distant field, visible and far off from the town square.

    The Captain took notice. "This will prove my theory that the Breen were up to no good from the very beginning. Sooooo untrustworthy."

    "You clearly love the Breen. Did you forget they joined the Dominion once?" Aramaki added. "That's a Gul Dukat level of insolence not even Evil Kes could have ever matched."

    Seifer waved it off. "Pfft! She was doomed to begin with. A seven-year lifespan? Clearly her makers didn't know how to handle that; not that it was rocket-science."

    ---

    As the three approached the area of the field which the Breen had just breeched, they came to find no one there and a two foot-high stone-bricked platform sitting in the middle of nowhere.

    "This appears to be a remnant of a past culture," Moggs observed. "But that doesn't explain where those men went, nor do dry facts have any place in everyday conversation."

    Moggs pushed in a protruding brick and the platform opened into stairs that descended into the ground. Seifer, Aramaki and Moggs walked down the steps, deep into the history of the world to find an open cavern of a large alien-shaped pyramid that the four Breen soldiers were scanning with their devices.

    "Hold it right there!" Seifer called out as he and his team aimed phasers. "How dare you do things and such? Don't you know getting out of bed is a hassle in and of itself? I can't even go into the thought of breakfast at this point."

    The angry disturbance of Relk Marcel turned in his direction. "KKZZSSKklvvvVVGGGgrK! ZZZrrrKF!"

    "Well, no, we don't have permission to be here either. But who are we to mess with the status quo? You're here, and clearly that's a thing that's happened at least once," Seifer answered.

    Then Marcel added, "TTTKzzZZZRKVVVV! VVVVVKTTT! GGGV!"

    "Obviously, I read up on Captain Archer's temporal exploits and am as confused as anyone how Temporal Cold War incursions still happened at certain points despite the war being later prevented by Archer himself."

    The Breen agreed, then continued, "ZZKKRrRRRRrrrVVVvvvVSZDDDDKKRR!"

    "There is no evidence to back up Janeway's attempts at teaming up with Borg to destroy another race. It's all just hearsay, as far as I know," Seifer said. "Anyway, you have yourselves a great day."

    At that, the Breen walked passed them, to exit the underground cavern the way they came in.

    "Sir, did you just repeat a communication-bit you did at the very beginning? My thirteenth brother always did that; drove me crazy," Moggs said. "Also, you appear to have let them off the hook again?"

    Seifer nodded. "Indeed. The Breen's talk-mock is all there is out of a race of distorted yap-chappers, through of which they explained claims of dissident Deferi and Deferi pre-knowledge to underground ancient structures of such and that."

    "What is the point of being so neutral??" complained Aramaki. "You're neither Picard nor Kirk! You're just blank! You know I was supposed to look up to you, right?"

    The Captain held up a finger. "Oh, you'll be in the complete opposite end of that spectrum by the end of the week."

    ---

    Returning to the surface, Captain Seifer, Lieutenant Commander Moggs and Lieutenant Aramaki met with Cassen who was being confronted by Marcel and his three rifle-aiming Breen soldiers.

    "VVRRKKVVVvvvVVT!" Marcel said, in anger.

    Cassen held up his hands. "Yes, so we did know about the caves, but we didn't have any obligation to tell you about them. Isn't that right, Captain Seifer?"

    "Uh, you didn't even tell us," the Trill countered. "How are we supposed to assist you with partial information? My science officer has way too many siblings to stand for that."

    The Deferi crossed his arms. "Hey, doesn't Starfleet work on a need-to-know basis? You are clearly aware of the kind of work-methods which require stratagem."

    "KRRGGGzzZZrKrrrrrGGG! Gkrk!" Marcel added.

    Seifer held up his hand. "Hey, I'm more on the Deferi's side of things, but I haven't completely signed off on the Breen's either. So, basically, indecisiveness is its own reward. That's going in my log for sure."

    "If you gentlemen must know, the pictographs on those underground structures have just recently been deciphered as Ancient Deferi," Cassen explained. "It took us a while to work it out because our neutral nature wouldn't accept the results one way or the other. We couldn't even decide what to have for our post examination snack timeslot."

    Marcel growled. "VVVRRRKKLLggGGGrrRRKr!"

    "Yeah, the Breen are right. You really need to stop being so neutral. In fact, because I've been engaged in similar, but differently motivated, behaviour, I'm going to make my own decision here and now: And that is that I believe the Breen need to leave this world alone," Captain Seifer declared. "I just invented it as a possible course of action. What do you think?"

    Marcel growled even more as his men turned their rifles to aim at the Starfleet officers. "VVggGGGGrRRRTTTKRR!"

    "What? I thought you'd be happy with my following through with your side-choosing task??" Seifer said in shock. "Also, none of these ruins are Preserver-based, the Archive of which was already revealed and fought over with Thot Trel on Lae'nas III, so you should be done with all of this."

    The Breen added. "VRKRRRRLGGGGggRKe!? DDRRRrrGGTTttkkWWNXX! STTtKKRTGGGXXChhHRgG! VVVvLRRGkKM!"

    "Seriously, when do Moggs and I get our universal translators fixed?" interrupted Aramaki. "I keep hearing a ringing noise in addition, and it may be destroying me, physically."

    Moggs spoke up. "Also, how does an Ancient Deferi culture make its way all the way out into space to colonize this world? I've barely come to grips with my own genetic relations."

    "We suspect we are an off-shoot of their evolutionary branch," Cassen added. "But more research is needed, as, apparently creationism is a thing now? And the Breen have yet again concluded much more than is here, as is the style of their kind, which my colony must now adapt to, thanks to your example, Captain Seifer."

    Behind Cassen was now a large group of Deferi, ready to confront Marcel in any way possible. The gathering caught Seifer and the Breen off guard.

    "Whoa! I never thought of you as the doing-kind??" Seifer said. "Just wait until you try breakfast!"

    Cassen nodded. "I will. But, to be honest, this congregation is causing us a much anticipated heavy dose of anxiety, so it would be appreciated if the Breen could react quickly before we all collapse under our own shaky feet."

    "VRRRRKKZZRRCCHHHMRRR!" Marcel's men turned their weapons to the group, but, instead, the Relk ranked individual held up his hand to signal them 'stop' in lost patience from all the madness they have been going through. "BBBTTTTVVrrRRRGGGhhLKR!"

    Having enough of it, Marcel ordered his Breen soldiers and himself to transport back up to the Leinstien. After they dematerialized, the Ragnarok hailed the Captain below.

    "Sir, it looks like the Breen are departing. They've just gone to warp," reported Winry. "Also, their warp effect leaves residual snowflakes for some reason."

    Captain Seifer tapped his commbadge. "Acknowledged, Lieutenant Commander. Like the buzzing noise of the two-reason-incessant Talaxian fur fly, the Deferi have annoyed the Breen away and to no end."

    "A tactic we could all learn from," she said, before she cut the transmission, unsure at why she said it.

    The Trill then turned to Cassen. "One more thing: Were the Breen right? Is there something more to the origin of these structures?"

    "Definitely not," Cassen replied. "And you know we aren't lying, because we could never take a position on something. Well, except when it comes to the Breen now, and that's only for, at most, three to four minutes at a time."

    Observing a fainting and knees-buckling crowd of Deferi, Seifer somehow was only partially convinced. "Very well then, Cassen. We'll be in orbit for a little while longer, in case they return. There are plenty more communication-bits to be had between they and I. So, if you need anything, let us know."

    "Thank you, Captain," Cassen replied. "As we learned during the Borg conference on Deep Space 9, sometimes action is required more than inaction."

    Seifer nodded and Cassen watched the Starfleet officers dematerialize away. Then Cassen narrowed his brow in more confidence, appreciative of all the obstacles finally out his colony's way in order for them to pursue what they previously had intended to go after.

    "The find will be ours now."
  • hawku001xhawku001x Member Posts: 10,527 Arc User
    edited September 2020
    ULCA #1

    The Imposter

    Captain Oroku Seifer gripped his command chair as the Pathfinder-class with Discovery-class pylons U.S.S. Ragnarok spun around from an explosion of two quantum torpedoes hitting each other right in front of them.

    "Gahhh!" Seifer yelped as his balance was momentarily thrown. "Hail the Orion ship!"

    Lieutenant Aramaki hailed them and an Orion appeared on screen. "This is Ginyo of the O.S.S. Hakkett. We demand you give us all of your stuff and whatnot. You know, the various trinkets and bells and whistles; a couple of hair brushes, salad tongs, and so on."

    "What the hell, man?? I was just sitting here with my new crew and new ship! Do you know how annoying being disturbed from that is? Also, what stuff? Starfleet vessels literally have nothing on them! We're the epitome of pristine, cleanliness, and our corridors are scrubbed tirelessly of germs, every hour."

    Ginyo smirked. "Ah, I see I have sufficiently riled you. Excellent work, me."

    "I mean, it was alright, but nothing to write home about." Seifer stood up. "Anyway, Aramaki, fire upon the enemy vessel for being different than us!"

    The human tactical officer frantically worked his controls. "Sir? The weapons controls are completely messed up??"

    "Flight is wonky-wonky as well," Lieutenant Edward said, turning from her helm.

    Moggs looked up from his science station. "Same here. I believe our systems have been compromised, internally. It was that guy." The Caitian pointed at a Tellarite who was also a Starfleet officer working away at the Operations console. "It was definitely that guy."

    "Oh, man! I'm so close to winning this Fizzbin game! So close!" Tomsin said, completely oblivious to what was going on in his surroundings.

    Seifer walked over and turned him around. "What the?? That game is a fraud from Sigma Iota II which makes so much nonsense that in digital form it messes up any computer system!"

    "Yeah, I wouldn't even touch that with a hundred meter tractor beam," said Ginyo from the viewscreen. "I lost two slave girls to madness trying to figure it out; and they're the smart ones of our race! Hakkett out!"

    The screen cut to a view of the Orion corvette turning in space and warping out of there as fast as they could.

    "Hey, you wronged me first by causing me to be Riker-duplicated, so I can do whatever I want!" Tomsin argued.

    Seifer crossed his arms. "Do you actually believe that as justification, or are you just arguing because it's a Tellarite sport and you're in a gaming mood?"

    "A little bit of Column A, a little bit of Column B, and whole lot of an unmentioned Column C, which has more to do with something I ate this morning that's causing me indigestion," Tomsin explained.

    Just then, his transporter duplicate, another-Tomsin, entered the Bridge. "Did I miss anything?"

    ---

    Later, Seifer met with Tomsin in his Ready Room with his entire Starfleet biography up to his Academy résumé displayed on his desktop screen for study.

    "Dammit man! This résumé is an obvious forgery. Under 'Objective' you wrote, 'To seek out new arguments and new civilized confrontations', and under 'Experience' you wrote, 'Five years of gritting your teeth and furrowing your brow.' You're a Tellarite? Your brow is always furrowed?"

    Tomsin pointed. "Hey, the scowl of my people is a constant effort of tension. We cannot for one second relax our facial muscles or we lose our planetary citizenships!"

    "Yeah!" contributed Tomsin's transporter duplicate, who was siting right next to him.

    Seifer dismissed them both. "Ugh. So weird. Anyway, you clearly faked your way passed the Academy and into Starfleet. Why?"

    "Because a member of my family wronged us and left to never be seen again! I made my way into service where they operate intending on confronting them in the only way that befits all grown men with slow reflexes in conflict: Anbo-jyutsu!"

    The other Tomsin raised his arm. "Same."

    "But, by the time I got here, I ended up loving the work. Contributing to bettering the Federation and myself was more fulfilling than confrontation, so I abandoned my mission and settled into my duties."

    Seifer stood up and sighed. "Well, despite that, I have no choice but to relieve you of your duties and drop you off with the Earth-bound U.S.S. Viracoacha who we're rendezvousing with today. We're doing crew transfers from Spacedock, so I guess that works out for me finding a new Operations officer."

    "You may think this pleases me, but I've grown too attached to Starfleet and have even been taking all the online Academy courses to appease my appetites."

    The Captain shook his head. "Those are available on the subspace web now?? Talk about recruiting cannon fodder for the Tzenkethi. Oh, and if you're so dedicated, why are you constantly mucking about with the transporters, trying to create Vulcan-Talaxian hybrids?"

    "Because being duplicated in the wonky way that I have has made me open to the ridiculousness of this universe in ways that expand and malleate me like never before! I'll feed my desire to explore fear manifestations as Kohl-Clowns, or transfer my brain out of my skull, or hunt ancient cities as crouching-baby-talking Loque'eque creatures without any remorse whatsoever."

    The other Tellarite nodded. "We've actually planned that last one out with a pre-timed release of their mutagenic virus throughout the ship for next Friday."

    "Ugh! I'm definitely not sorry to see you go. You're confined to force fields until we reach the Viracoacha," Seifer ordered as he activated protective energy barriers around both men. "Don't even think about entering your brains to find lost Section 31 information, because you don't have any!"

    The other Tomsin snorted before closing his eyes and jumping into a deep mental crusade. "I'll be the judge of that!"

    ---

    Later, the U.S.S. Ragnarok met up with the Sojourner-class U.S.S. Viracoacha and Seifer met with Captain Aeris in his transporter room where several transferring officers were continually beaming to and from both ships.

    "Well, I guess I'm not the only one with a new ship. How's she flying, Captain?" Seifer asked as he pulled both Tomsins over.

    Aeris smirked. "Better than your off-model starship. Really? Discovery-class pylons on a Pathfinder-class starship?"

    "Uh, it makes it look way better, plus customization is a thing Starfleet allows now, so why not?" Seifer shrugged. "Anyway, I need you to take Tomsin and Tomsin back to Starfleet for Court Marshal and so on."

    The other Captain blinked in shock. "Wait? You've got a Tomsin too?"

    "Hello, Captain Seifer, I'm here to transfer to—" and then the Tellarite which had just beamed over, stopped speaking when he saw two other Tellarites that looked just like him. "What the!? It's my twin brother!"

    Seifer jumped back in surprised. "Whoa! You're his twin?? Why do you even have the same name then?"

    "That's where the conflict in our family stems, Captain," explained the original Tomsin. "He's the one I had originally faked my way into Starfleet to search for because he insulted and left us for not relinquishing his first name to me!"

    Transporter-duplicate Tomsin continued. "You see, our mother died upon birth claiming her son's name was Tomsin, but no one could figure out which son she had meant, so her offspring were named the same."

    "It's a dumb argument and I was happy for a while by joining Starfleet to get away from the likes of you," the Tomsin on the transporter pad said. He then took out his tricorder and tapped at it. "But it just so happens I prepared myself for this exact possibility by infecting myself with a quasi-energy microbe!"

    Suddenly the transporter was activated around him, dematerializing him for a second and rematerializing him with a giant floating worm hovering over and around him.

    "Attack!" the new-transfer-Tomsin ordered, prompting the hovering worm to launch itself toward the two other Tomsins.

    Seifer and Aeris dove out of the way in continued shock. "Not more Tellarite madness??" yelped Seifer.

    "Oh, I've had years to prepare for you, Tomsin!" argued the original while leaping out of the path of the circling attack. He then quickly accessed the transporter console and dematerialized-rematerialized himself in the same way, bringing his own giant quasi-energy microbe into existence.

    The new worm then shot itself toward the other worm which was circling around and the two clashed over and over again.

    "This is crazy, Tomsins!? People have the same names all the time!" claimed Seifer. "But it doesn't mean you're the same person?? We may see and judge ourselves in others, but it's never accurate because people are inherently different by their experiences and environments!"

    The duplicate Tomsin transported his own quasi-energy microbe and it fired itself into the other two. All three ricocheted off each other, head-first, clashing and cutting the others in combat! The first worm finally was knocked out and onto the transporter pad, with the other two flying over to finish the job.

    "Wait!" the original Tomsin yelled out. "The Captain's right. We're not the same, and we should be appreciative of that. Change starts with us." He waved his hand, calling his worm back to him and then went over to the controls to dematerialize-rematerialize it away. His transporter duplicate did the same.

    The new-transfer-Tomsin went over to his fallen worm and examined it. "I suppose we can be adults about this now. It's been long enough that we've grown in maturity, or supposedly, we should have." He then tapped at his tricorder, dematerializing-rematerializing his microbe away.

    "It takes a lot of headspace to deal with family the right way," commented Aeris as she helped Seifer get up. "We take too many liberties with our own kind."

    Captain Seifer dusted himself off, annoyed. "Uh, that excuses nothing. Don't think any of you are getting away with any of this! You're all going to be charged with disruption, and you two fakers are getting double-court marshaled."

    "Hold on, are these the Tellarites who took the online courses?" Aeris said, going through her PADD. "Turns out they took the final exam and both passed. I was to graduate them here and officially assign them to where they already were."

    Seifer's jaw dropped. "WHAT?! But they lied about the whole thing??"

    "Oh, that," Aeris dismissed. "They already admitted it to the Council and took the extra credit courses as penalty, clearing them of any possible charges and advancing them to the head of their online class." She then turned to the two other Tomsins. "Congratulations, Cadets. Looks like you're already well into the craziness of this universe."

    The Captain watched as Aeris got back onto the transporter pad. "Don't leave me here with three Tomsins!?"

    "Oh, it was just a little family spat," Aeris said before transporting back to her ship. "Give the little worm summoners a break. And don't modify your ship any further away from its self-canon design."

    After she left, the new-recurit Tomsin approached Captain Seifer and took out his hand. "Greetings, sir. Ensign Tomsin, reporting for duty. Don't worry, I don't have any transporter duplicates." And then he thought about it. "But we do have several other twins."

    "There are more of you??"
  • hawku001xhawku001x Member Posts: 10,527 Arc User
    edited September 2020
    ULCA #2

    L'amour est Parmi les Étoiles

    Captain Oroku Seifer sat in command of the Pathfinder-class with Discovery-class pylons U.S.S. Ragnarok as it approached a giant, anomalous nebula in space.

    "Ah, interstellar matter, the wrath of Kahn of the universe in gaseous, fragmented, non-racially confused form," Seifer said in pleasing and comforting way.

    Aramaki turned in his chair to observe the view screen. "Except we never planned to check this thing out; just ran into it. And it's not a harmless anomaly, but a Zanthi-class nebula; the kind that infects people and Betazoids and transmits feelings of love and affection to everyone on the crew or space station— whichever the plot device conveniently provides."

    "Ugh, Lieutenant, that is such a set-uppy thing to say," criticized the Captain. "You're on break early, but stay out of the coffee room. Someone's been stealing the filters and I have a hidden camera set up that I don't want you to accidentally block because you don't know where it is."

    Suddenly, the Zanthi nebula moved toward the Ragnarok, enveloping it completely and infecting the entire senior staff and crew.

    "Aaauhhh! It's on me. It's all over me!" Moggs reacted in panic as he tried to brush the pink dust off his Caitian fur. "Everything sticks. You don't know what it's like to be a giant cat. None of you get me!"

    Edward watched him from her helm position. "Awww. He's so cute when he's angry. I just want to squish him."

    "Oh, no. Seifer to Engineering, what's the status of the engines??" the Captain said, suddenly sitting up in his chair in fear.

    Winry's reply came over the air. "Just what you expected, sir. The warp core attracted the nebula to the ship and now it's neutralized our engines completely beyond operational recognition."

    "How do you know what's going on from down there? There aren't any windows? Also, I removed several key ceiling pot lights that I thought could save us power in the long run."

    The Chief Engineer replied, "We have a Traveler down here who is constantly expanding his mind to the Bridge and describing everything that's going on. He knows that all you sickos taste-tested heart of targ yesterday. You know who you are."

    "What's going on?" asked Captain Aeris as she entered the Bridge. "I was just checking out the forbidden back-room lavatory when I was suddenly assaulted by an unusual mixed aura of Deanna Troi brand lust and self-arousal."

    Seifer slouched, defeated. "Gah. We ran into a Zanthi nebula, and now everyone on the crew is going to suffer the Love at First Sight trope like nobody's business."

    "You know, you could have waited to do this when we weren't going to go to the Starfleet Headquarters Captain's Bowl of Worms Dinner together. That's the last time I abandon my ship for a shortcut with you," she disputed.

    But, while she was talking, Seifer couldn't help but draw a sudden, unwarranted affection and appreciation for her as she stood before him explaining her backstory and what she was doing there.

    "Are you listening to me or Kirk-staring at me?" Aeris interrupted herself, impatiently. "You know he gained, like, 30 pounds by the end of his five-year mission."

    It was then she and Seifer noticed the other Bridge officers drooling over each other in reaction to the Zanthi infection, with Edward trying to leap onto Moggs without hesitation. "Aauuggh!" Moggs yelped, struggling to get away. "She's found a way to purr as a Human, which should be physically impossible?!"

    "Damn, it's already started," Seifer said, getting to his feet. "If I don't get us out of this convenience-machination, we'll all be descending into NX-01 Decon Chamber debauchery. What's more is the possibility of reaching Vulcan neuro-pressure levels."

    He fought his unrelenting urge to confess his lust for Aeris, covered his vision, and entered the turbolift as fast as he could.

    ---

    Entering Engineering, Seifer was quick to lock the doors behind him, securing the area from any extraneous intruders. Winry was busy staring at a PADD before she noticed him.

    "Oh, don't mind me. I was just admiring how attractive Aramaki was in his profile picture," Winry said. "His image popped up when I Voyager's-Doctor-view-screened the Bridge, looking for you. Being confined to one spot on the ship has its quirks, video-calling-people-wise, at least."

    Seifer furrowed his brow at her. "You're not a hologram; you're Human, and you're free to go anywhere you want on the ship??"

    "Yeah, but my dedication to the job force-marries me to one spot, which is the least I can say about my desire to force-marry Aramaki. But he'd better provide for me, because I have my out-dated, ostracized fetishes that don't fit in with today's updated world views."

    The Captain gritted his teeth. "Too much info, Winry. And it's that damn nebula that's causing us all to fall into licentious sexism disguised as delightful quirks that are borderline-safe for the whole family. We have to get the engines online and us out here as soon as we can."

    "Oh, Captain, if only you knew how I felt and how much my libido is controlling me like Data being possessed so many times on the Enterprise," she said, taking his hands into hers.

    Seifer's eyes widened. "You have feelings for your old Captain, too, huh? It's nothing to be ashamed of, considering Tasha Yar once came on to Picard when Q put her in that non-visible, non-existent penalty box farce."

    "What? I don't mean you; I'm talking about Lieutenant Aramaki! I just have a thing for Asian-descent men."

    The other man threw up his hands, channeling annoyance and sarcasm. "Well, thanks for the rest of us! Never mind. We have to find a way to forget our love obsessions and focus on the weird, convenient-sciencey problem at hand."

    "But is love even real to begin with, or are we falling for a chemical reaction that merely compels our animal-kind to breed?"

    Seifer deadpanned her. "Of course it's real. It's magical and mystical and unexplained in all facets of spiritual mindfulness."

    "That's not scientific at all, Captain. In fact, I think you're just mashing words together to make it sound more brazen than it really is."

    Pointing accusingly, Seifer replied, "Only non-enchanted, non-miraculous, magic-lacking Odo-talkers speak like that! Where is your sense of wonder and that rose-colored VISOR I got you for your birthday?"

    "I keep telling you that's not a Chief Engineer thing and that Geordi was blind! Just because there was never an explanation or plot point about his changing to eye implants out of nowhere doesn't mean he was doing it for fashion."

    Seifer reassured her, "Still, though, everyone's doing the tech-on-face thing now. Seven of Nine gets it. Gaius Selan totally gets it."

    ---

    Later, the two found themselves in the Holodeck within Vic's lounge in 1961 Las Vegas, with holographic representations of Aramaki and Aeris.

    "Now, when Vic was trying to shake Odo's frigidness, he used a Kira-lookalike hologram to melt his cold, non-physically-existent heart with an amorous rendition of Little Willie John's Fever," Seifer explained as he sat next to Winry at the piano. "If a duet by these two heart-throbs doesn't scream 'spellbinding' then you've got nothing in you and you're the Devil!"

    Suddenly, the holographic representations of both officers began singing, with Aeris first: "Never know how much I love you; Never know how much I care."

    "When you put your arms around me; I catch a fever that's so hard to bear!" Aramaki continued, lying across the top of the piano as sultry as a man could trying to imitate Lola Chrystal.

    Winry halted the music and stood up. "Not that this isn't convincing enough to make me want to jump this brilliant man's bones, but all that you're demonstrating here is lust, which only serves to reinforce my point about people just being breeding machines."

    Seifer, suddenly unable to pull his frozen gaze from the holographic Aeris, murmured, off-track, "The who in the what now?"

    ---

    Later, Seifer trapped Winry with the real Aramaki and Aeris in the Delta-class shuttle Mako.

    "When Tom Paris and B'Elenna Torres were racing the Trans-Stellar Rally, Tom stopped the Delta Flyer II to confront her skewed feelings, confess his love and eventually ask B'Elenna to marry him," Seifer explained. "If you refuse similar compulsions, you're a pariah!"

    Winry was cramped up against the other three as the shuttle was full of excess cargo: Packaged worms for the Starfleet dinner, later.

    "What's going on again?" Aeris asked, confused, also cramped and struggling. "And why do you keep your original pylon parts in your cargo bay, forcing your normal cargo into shuttles??"

    Aramaki attempted to nudge a cargo container jutting into his back. "Oh, targ manure," he said in shock. "I just opened one of the compartments!"

    "Ugh! Worms??" panicked Winry as a large chunk of wiggly creatures poured onto her shoulders.

    Seifer backed away but hit another container, opening it, and pouring even more worms out onto his own shoulders. "This was a bad idea! I see that now."

    ---

    Later, Seifer, Winry, Aeris and Aramaki found themselves in the Arboretum, where it was brimming with plant life; so much so that its growth continued out into the rest of the corridors, turning the entire deck into a jungle.

    "When Worf and Jadzia had to rendezvous with a spy on Soukara, Jadzia became injured in the jungle and Worf was forced to choose between his duty or his beloved," Seifer explained just before he took out a phaser and fired a beam into both Aeris and Aramaki's legs. "If you choose duty, you're a ne'er-do-well!"

    The victims both then screamed in pain. ""AUGHH!!""

    "And now, our mission: I order us to reach Section 28 and leave our love interests behind, for duty, except if, perchance, our hearts take over and force us to go back to save their lives," the Captain continued just before he and Winry ran off into the jungle that was Deck 14.

    As the pair were running and panting in a breathless panic through the foliage, Winry stopped them both just a few meters before their appointed goal. "Hold on a second. This is crazy? We should go back for them because this is just a fake order, and the Dominion War is not at stake!"

    "Or, are you so lost in fear for Aramaki's life that you would abandon any order to save him for his well-being and the power of love?" Seifer criticized.

    Winry deadpanned him. "You know he's the only one on this ship who can fire the torpedoes, right?"

    "My precious Attack Pattern Delta!" Seifer panicked, abandoning all arguments of any kind. He then ran back for the injured parties, followed by Winry.

    By the time they reached them, Aeris was already wrapping a bandage around her leg wound. Winry glared at Seifer, critisizingly. "You left her a first aid kit, cheating your own test??"

    "Yeah," Seifer shrugged, guiltily. "I couldn't allow her to suffer or lose her life. That in itself proves my point from the very beginning."

    Aeris glanced at him and smirked, finally catching on. "So, you do have a thing for me, huh? I thought as much."

    "Fine. I'd like to specify that my claim of a chemical-reaction extends to delusions of love, and that, thanks to my observations of your actions and my internal reactions, perhaps it's all the same in the end," Winry finalized. "It all does or doesn't matter."

    The Captain nodded. "I can live with that middle-ground."

    "Auugggghh! Is anyone going to help me??" Aramaki complained, seething in physical discomfort. "I'm literally bleeding out all over these asclepias curassavicas."

    Aeris turned to the group. "Speaking of 'out', what about leaving this Zanthi nebula? Weren't you guys working on that problem before you shot us in a very sociopath-driven way?"

    "Oh, that? A frequency modification of -04.7 to our warp core reaction should cause a rejection of the matter surrounding the ship," explained Winry. "Like Geordi, I was so distracted by this love obsession, I lagged in the actual situation at hand."

    Seifer's eyes widened in shock. "In effect, we poison the milk! No one's ever thought of that!"

    "So, Captain, they say these forced-attraction love spells stem from latent pre-existing feelings," Aeris began. "Are you sure that's how you want to start things, by proving that you're so layered and deep that I should, by default, be interested in you?"

    Seifer recoiled. "Ugh. That's inherently predictable and over-done. How about I drop a stack of PADDs and when we both reach for them our hands accidentally touch?"

    "That's just as over-done, but not as layered and, thus, less looming," she said as they both began walking out of the Arboretum. "Count me in."
    Post edited by hawku001x on
  • hawku001xhawku001x Member Posts: 10,527 Arc User
    ULCA #3

    Enmity

    The Pathfinder-class with Discovery-class pylons U.S.S. Ragnarok dropped warp in orbit of the First Federation planet, Carpi. There, they stood between the planet and the Tzenkethi Rhas'bej battleship Cortisgor which presented itself as a threat to the people below.

    "Tzenkethi vessel, you are in violation of this airspace. Well, I suppose there's no air, so, spacespace," hailed Captain Seifer. "Please disengage your weapons and put your many arms up. How many do you have, like, four? Man, that's a lot of arms."

    Suddenly, the viewscreen clicked on to a display of the Cortisgor's commanding officer. "This is Captain Gogard of the Cortisgor. You have no jurisdiction here, nor is your science vessel any match for us. In fact, science vessels aren't a match for anyone but other science vessels."

    "What? Science is the whole reason we're out here! We also have shield weakening beams and such. Oh, you're going to get such a debuff, you don't even know," threatened Seifer. "And I thought you guys were supposed to be slender and good-looking and filled with fluid sacs?" And then, he pondered out-loud, "What of the sacs?"

    Gogard ruptured in anger. "You dare bring up that troublesome reality where the Tzenkethi were part of something called the Typhon Pact and your precious Deep Space 9 is replaced by a metal monstrosity of complete uglyness!?" He turned to his crew. "Ready the tricobalt torpedoes!"

    "Hold on a second!" came the sudden warning of another Seifer, who walked onto the Bridge of the Ragnarok and interrupted the two men. "I'm the you from two days from now. When he fires his tricobalt torpedoes, you fire your quantum torpedoes and accidentally destroy his ship!"

    The other man recoiled in disgust. "What is this trickery? My ship is sufficiently—" But he interrupted himself when he noticed his shields weren't up. "Ohhh, yes. The most important thing of battle. Sometimes we Tzenkethi are quite silly, though we don't look it."

    "Okay, that's weird," the Seifer of the present said, eyeing his doppelganger. "I'll dissect you later. In the meantime— Aramaki, now fire the quantum torpedoes!"

    "Wait a moment!" came the sudden cry of a duplicate Gogard, walking onto the Bridge of the Cortisgor. "I'm the Captain Gogard of from three days from now, and when you fire your tricobalt torpedoes in response, one of them explodes in our torpedo bay and blows our ship to pieces!"

    The present day Gogard looked at his identical self. "What?? I'd kill you if I wasn't so irritated right now! Also, I still have that mole, huh?"

    "Everyone stop!" came the call of a third Seifer, stepping onto the Bridge of the Ragnarok. "I'm from four days in the future, and all this confusion ends up frustrating the Seifer of the present enough to initiate a self-destruct sequence that takes out both ships and punctures the planetary atmosphere below!"

    Present day Seifer crossed his arms. "I was only mulling that over. And how do we keep coming here from the future? It's like a paradox-nightmare hopped up on ketracel white."

    "It is I, Marhs, from five days in the future," came the answer from a short, First Federation diplomat, walking onto the Bridge of the Cortisgor with another Gogard in hand. "You've known that our technology radiates in comparison with your pathetic 'Federation', if that's what you insist on continuing to call it, and I chose to test our time-travelling device in order to prevent the cataclysmic destruction about to happen here today."

    "Everybody stop!!" came the heightened warning from another Marhs, stepping onto the Bridge of the Ragnarok. "I'm Marhs from six days in the future and my usage of so many temporal doors causes the space-time destruction of both ships, the planet, and the entire solar system! I suppose being the 'First' has its caveats after all."

    Two-days-from-now-Seifer looked at him, annoyed. "Then, why would you still come here? Never mind." Then he addressed Gogard, "You know what? Why don't we end this peacefully, not fire at each other, and just both of us get out of here before it's too late?"

    "Hey! I'm the Captain here!" Present day Seifer argued. "But, yeah, what I said."

    The Gogard on the Bridge nodded. "To end this madness; anything. But what about all these duplicates of us? Surely we must kill them with our murderous appetites?"

    "My First Federation tricorder can reintegrate all our duplicates into us, so that we become some kind of space-time Frankenstien's monster versions of ourselves," explained Marhs, as he held the device up. "It's quite painful."

    One of the Gogards nodded, on screen. "Make it so."

    "Hey! Aliens don't get to say that!" argued Seifer just as the device was activated, causing the duplicate versions of everyone to stretch and be torn apart until sucked into their present-day counterparts— "AAAAAGGGGHHHH!!!!"

    Seifer, Gogard, and Marhs screamed in utter agony of it all until the process was complete. They each patted themselves in check to ensure nothing was physically out of place.

    "I'm good," Seifer said, finally able to relax from all the stress. "Captain Gogard?"

    To everyone's dismay, Captain Gogard was suddenly an alternate universe form of Tzenkethi: Slender, gentle, and gel-like. He looked nothing like the lizard form the rest of his race were. "How did this happen!?"

    "Damn," Marhs said, slapping his device. "Had this thing set to Destiny timeline. Don't ask what that means. Well, I've got to go. My voice-over guy is about to go on lunch. Oh, did I mention, someone voices each of us over? It's a long and arduous, pre-practiced process, but it's our way. First Federation out!"

    Everyone watched as Marhs, instead of beaming anywhere, then began slowly walking around the Bridge, looking around, as if on tour of the Ragnarok.

    "Yeah, it's clear we each have our own problems," Seifer said to Gogard, indicating the roaming Marhs. "Too many Federations are the real paradox here. Ragnarok for-real out."

    ---

    When the screen cut off on the Bridge of the Cortisgor, a new, gentle and angelic Gogard with fluid sacs turned to his crew. "As soon as I'm back to normal, that Captain Seifer is going to pay for this!"

    "Sir, your head is drooping over," warned his tactical officer.

    Gogard placed his hands and readjusted himself. "Dammit! Take us out of here! And stop looking at the unidentified parts of my body! Ugh! What even is this thing hanging here? Dammit!"

    The Cortisgor left orbit and jumped to warp.
  • hawku001xhawku001x Member Posts: 10,527 Arc User
    edited October 2020
    ULCA #4

    Lost to Time

    The Pathfinder-class with Discovery-class pylons U.S.S. Ragnarok dropped warp in space and approached a lone planet. Captain Oroku Seifer, Science officer Moggs and Doctor Cetra beamed down to examine the source of a mysterious message.

    "Well, this place appears barren," Cetra said, looking around at the near-desert-like planet. "How could anything originate from nothing?"

    Moggs began scanning the area with his tricorder. "That's the very same question scholars have been asking about the universe for eons and will be for eons to come."

    "First of all, that's a grim out-look on discovery and learning about ourselves in general, and, second, I was clearly referring to the voided situation at hand," countered Cetra. "Tangents are you just trying to sound smart."

    The Caitian science officer shrugged. "I don't have to 'try' anything."

    "Gentlemen, ladies," the Captain interjected. "What if we simulated a tachyon scan with our tricorders, in case the device this message came from is cloaked?"

    Moggs began the alterations on his device. "Sir, you do know you're a tactical officer, right? You should not know of these things."

    "Hey, my symbiont affords me several previous lifetimes of experience and a strange morning sickness not related to anything relevant at all," Seifer replied.

    Cetra glanced at him. "You know you should probably have your Doctor look at that?"

    "You're my Doctor!" Seifer said.

    Suddenly, the bombardment of Moggs' tricorder emissions knocked a non-corporeal floating head, out of mid-air, next to them.

    "Who dares to awaken the mighty Alazard, eighth Ruler of the Thasian Order!?" the green, translucent head echoed.

    Everyone jumped back in shock, and then Seifer stepped forward to introduce himself. "Greetings, fearsome, floating brain-cage, I am Captain Seifer of the Federation Starship Ragnarok, responding to a message we received over subspace, originating from right here."

    "Huh? You mean this message?" Alazard asked.

    In a single second, the message played back for everyone, emanating from the head itself: "Come to Quark's, Quark's is fun, come right now, don't walk - run!"

    "Yeah; that. We thought he may have opened up another bar here, and were hoping to get some Cait-nip," admitted Lieutenant Commander Moggs. "It's medicinal, and for some other Science officer Caitian. Yeah, that's the ticket. Yeah."

    Cetra nodded in agreement. "Also, the tune is quite catchy, albeit short. The idea of running is quite much. Is accelerated pace still a thing?"

    "UGH! That incessant jingle has been stuck in my head for 39 years! Ever since I was passing by your precious Deep Space 9 and overheard it, I have been haunted by its musical power and now its taken control of me!"

    Seifer scratched his head. "So, you've unintentionally manifested your thoughts as a subspace message?"

    "Yes, and I have exiled myself from my kind because of it! At first, I believed it to be all good in fun, but I soon discovered the viral nature of melody and its invasive ability to affect all parts of my non-corporeal brain!"

    Cetra scanned the entity with her tricorder. "In a sense, it's thrown you out-of-whack. That's a new Starfleet medical term, by the way."

    "Giant bulbous cranium, is there any point at which you were able to forget said instrumentals?" Moggs asked, out of pure, Federation-driven, hard-core, intense curiosity. Ugh!

    "In fact, when you knocked me out of hiding with your simulated tachyon scan, I became completely absorbed with a persistent and damaging ringing."

    Seifer snapped his fingers. "That's it! We just bombard you with more of those, and you'll forget the whole Quark thing immediately. It's a long shot, but an unpleasant encounter associated with the mental infection may force your subconscious into burying that dark-eye-shadowed Ferengi finally and forever."

    "What makes you think you know anything about the neuroscience of Thasians?"

    The Captain shrugged. "Well, you do appear as giant heads."

    "Good enough for me! Make it happen and such and so. Oh, and if I don't make it back, tell Glorborsoborch I hate her. It's an inside joke; she'll get it. Though, she may not respond similarly to you."

    Moggs then took out his tricorder and began its particle flow. The intensity of the simulated tachyons began to ring in Alazard's head, causing the transparent green noggin to shake artificially and then violently.

    "AAAAaaahhhh!!! Kahn never even met Chekov!!! Agggg!!!!"

    The Science officer looked over to his comrades for guidance. "Should we stop?"

    "Meh," Seifer shrugged. "I kind of want to see if he'll explode."

    Suddenly, the tricorder's reserve programmable particle stream bled dry, ending the assault on the copious being. His sanity reformed and he turned to the crew.

    "You failed at attempting to detonate me!" Alazard argued. "But, I believe the sounds inside my consciousness have ended. Now all I can think about are NX-01 Enterprise plot holes. Soooo many plot holes."

    Suddenly, a crowd of people began to appear all around them, as well as a giant city in the backdrop. The crew was then approached by the leader. "Greetings, I am Yun and we are a Bajoran colony who left Bajor to worship Alazard as we had grown tiresome of the Prophets and their holy wars with the Pah'Wraiths. Unfortunately, this guy had other things going on and accidentally locked us in hiding."

    "Aren't you just substituting one religious following for another? At what point does interchangeable faith become a fallacy in and of itself?" Seifer asked, confused.

    Yun shrugged. "Those are all good questions, probably, but deities who are also aliens to outsiders is our ketracel white and we need to find a new one STAT!"

    "Oh," Seifer replied. "Well, good luck. Have you tried the Medusans? I don't know much about them, being a non-Human, but they apparently share a name in Earth Greek mythology. Can't go wrong with that."

    Alazard was taken aback. "Dude! No. I dated a Medusan once. They are so clingy and low quality effect-wise. Well, you'll see. —Alazard out!" And then he disappeared.

    "Thank you, Captain," Yun said as his people turned to go back toward their city. "If you're ever in the area again, maybe you can check in on us from time to time."

    Oroku Seifer smiled. "I'd like that, whoever you are, wherever this is." Then he tapped his commbadge. "Seifer to Ragnarok. Three to beam up, and have all records of this place completely wiped from our systems and memories. Nothing here went to plan."

    "Hey!" argued Yun.

    The Captain then noticed him. "Oh, sorry. I didn't realize you were still here. We'll miss you." And then he turned back to his communiqué. "Ragnarok, are you still on comms? Have a salvo of quantum torpedoes ready to launch into their deserts so we can initiate nuclear winter and never have to see this surface again."

    "What!?" Yun contended.

    Seifer jumped, not expecting him. "Ah! Again? Are you ever going to go home? Never mind. We were just on our way out. Good luck. Oh, and Yun, all my hopes," he said empathetically, just before the Away Team was beamed out.

    The Bajoran then turned and nervously began the long walk back to the city.
    Post edited by hawku001x on
  • hawku001xhawku001x Member Posts: 10,527 Arc User
    WC #1

    First Contact Day

    The Pathfinder-class with Discovery-class pylons U.S.S. Ragnarok sat out in deep space as Captain Oroku Seifer, a Trill and Starfleet officer, took a seat on the Bridge of his ship.

    "Space, the final frontier," he started. "These are the voyages of the Starship Ragnarok. It's never-ending mission, to seek out new twirls and new synchronizations— Hm. I think we need to rewrite that. We sound like a dance ship."

    Lieutenant Commander Moggs, a Caitian and his science officer, suddenly spoke up. "Uh, sir, you don't have to recite the opening every morning. You do realize that, by repetition, you're just feeding into the very diagnosis of insanity, right?"

    "What I realize is that you're interrupting an essential Starfleet prerequisite to encountering new alien species," countered Seifer. "Without innocuous affirmations, we're a Federation of wanderers and rogues with no sense to dream, or look up at the stars, and a preoccupation with Klingon coffee taste-augmented by metal cups."

    Then he smiled to himself and looked back upon his first encounter with an alien life form.

    "Ah, my first contact, I remember it like it was yesterday. It was a teenage Star-jelly with attitude at the Academy, and we were to share a room before our first day. Except he wanted the top bunk, and I wanted a date with the indomitable Mary Sue."

    Lieutenant Aramaki, human and tactical officer, turned from his station. "Sir, did that even really happen? Those two things both sound impossible, especially that last one?"

    "I think?" Seifer said, suddenly doubting himself and searching his memories. "Did we fight Tribble-Tzenkethi hybrids last week, or is my recollection somehow being modified by the targ soup I'm eating right now?"

    Just then, the entire Bridge went dark and his whole crew and soup disappeared. The Trill found himself in a cave somewhere, latched to a metal bed with neural interfaces connected to his temples. He was now several years younger, and wearing civilian clothing.

    "Well, well," said another man, who stepped out of the shadows to reveal he as a look-alike. This Oroku was years older and wore the Odyssey-type Starfleet Commanding Officer Service Uniform the younger one was just wearing seconds before. "You figured out that you were in a simulation. Excellent work, past-me."

    The younger man squinted. "What? I'm you?"

    "In two days from now, you're going into your final test for the Symbiosis Commission to receive your Trill symbiont and then join Starfleet. I wanted to run my own test, temporarily modifying your memories, to see how you would fare within life aboard a starship; mine, in the future, to be exact."

    Oroku shook his head. "So, I haven't even left Trill? I've never actually met another alien before in my life?"

    "Not yet," replied the Captain. "You see, I remember this exact encounter when I was your age, and speaking to an older version of myself, and I knew if somehow I got here again that I had to fulfill my own destiny. That, and I really did fight a Tribble-Tzenkethi hybrid last week, and I needed not to think about that anymore, however possible." He shuddered at the thought of it.

    The young man squirmed, trying to get free. "This is crazy! The Klingon Targ War, the Lukari Pink Spray Tans, judging the Borg Cooperative Beauty Contest? Why test me with these fake events if I'm just going to end up like you?"

    "Oh, all those really happened, but to me in the future," the Captain said. "You see, the galaxy is full of crazy, over-the-top, mind-altering insanity and, due in-part to that, I was accidentally thrown too far into the past by a time-travel mechanic named Marhs. It's nonessential madness like his that you need to be prepared for."

    Oroku scoffed. "Or, I could, you know, discover all that on my own? What is this obsession people have with coddling their younger selves? Maybe who you are today is due to how you dealt with the challenges and the people you weren't prepared for!"

    "Well, I wasn't prepared for that," the older Oroku blinked, thrown-off. "Never-the-less, I know the aliens you're about to encounter, and, trust me, some of them are irrational, centuries-long, grudge-holding Iconians. Oh, and there's this Ferengi named Madran who had a horrible Son'a face-stretching accident, and—"

    Having been secretly breaking loose, young-Oroku pulled himself off the bed and stood up. "Enough! I don't want to hear any more from you! All a man ever needs is a perfect, seamless series of encounters with what's out there and here you are providing me with this pre-processed, half-Kirk'd Trill-symbiont-manure."

    Then, young-Oroku sighed.

    "Though, I suppose even meeting you is its own unexpected contact. So, it's all the same by that logic? I just wish my first encounter with 'what's out-there' was an alien, and not 'me'."

    Older-Oroku thought about his argument for a second before recalling his pointy-eared space-companion. "Oh, right. I can help you with that. As part of randomized time travel choices, Marhs sent my Caitian science officer with me—" And then, "Mr. Moggs, will you reveal yourself and proceed with formal, awkward social interactions against this youthful, handsome fellow?"

    "Yes, Captain," Moggs, a tall and grey-fur-colored man, said as he stepped out from beneath the shadows and extended his hand. "Hi, I'm an alien and such. Do you like... stuff?"

    Younger-Oroku's jaw dropped at the sudden, unexpected encounter. "Do I—?? Stuff is why I've been hoarding unrefined dilithium under my pillow all my life! Wow, and you must have so many ticks?"

    "I only have five," argued a suddenly annoyed and itchy Moggs. "Anyway, I think embracing your encounters as you go is a good ideology. I ate five Star-jellies yesterday. Good luck, time-spoiled-Oroku."

    Oroku nodded. "Thanks." But then he noticed his older self and Moggs begin the slow-happening, dramatic process of dematerialization. "What's going on? You haven't even told me how to get out of here?"

    "Looks like Marhs is reintegrating us with another temporal version of ourselves," the Captain said, looking around at his faltering molecular structure. "It's the Voyager version of a temporal paradox. You'll get used it! Oh, and to leave this cave-section, you'll need to solve an ancient, definitely fatal pre-Trill civilization stone-puzzle that focuses on Bronze Age symboliz—"

    But before he could finish, he and the Caitian had disappeared, leaving young-Oroku to his own devices.

    "Dammit, me!" he cursed. "Well, at least I met a giant cat-man as my 'first contact'. Maybe the crazy, over-the-top mind-altering insanity isn't as bad as I future-put it."

    Then he noticed the fur on his palm, from the hand-shake, prompting the young Trill to shake it off as furiously as possible.

    "Ugh! He was shedding! So disgusting! Ew! —Forget this. Future-me is going to pay for that! I'm taking up anbo-jyutsu and seeing how he likes losing a few brain cells to slow and clunky 'martial arts'. That'll show him and his weird, lanky tall-cat."

    And, with that, and a first alien encounter under his belt, Oroku exited the chamber to embark on a future of wild fascination and pure science-driven, serviceable revenge. What lie beyond space and time were now his to dream and his to explore.
  • hawku001xhawku001x Member Posts: 10,527 Arc User
    ULCA #5

    The Pathfinder-class with Discovery-class pylons U.S.S. Ragnarok was running repairs at Starbase 157, while Captain Oroku Seifer sat diligently at his command chair.

    "Sooooo, why are we still operating this listening post on the edge of Klingon space if we're allies with them now? Huh?" asked Lieutenant Edwards from her helm station.

    Seifer shrugged. "Starfleet still wants intel just in case they ever turn on us again. I mean, we've been in so many wars with the Klingons it's almost nostalgic. Oh, to shoot them again."

    "I wonder what they're up to right now?" pondered Aramaki who curiously tapped into the listening post's frequencies.

    Next, the voice of Torg resonated throughout the Bridge, continuing on a conversation without knowledge of surveillance. "And, so, I stabbed that whiny little brat in the chest! It really was coming with how he was the most annoying Klingon ever."

    Then Aramaki switched the channel again, bringing in a separate unawares conversation led by Captain Kagran. "Now that the Federation is on our side, they will join with us to destroy every Tribble! My decision-making knows no bounds!"

    In one last change, a distress signal suddenly came through, with a female voice. "To whomever hears this, our ship is dead in the water— Space water, that is. We need your help before we start eating each other, as is the protocol for grouped-Humans in isolation."

    "That one sounds follow-up-ish," Captain Seifer said, standing up. "We should do that."

    Moggs turned from his science station. "But what about our responsibilities here? Surely we should acknowledge that we're abandoning them?"

    "The who and the what now? Delete the current mission! Engage!" Seifer announced whilst pointing enthusiastically toward the view screen.

    ---

    Later, the Ragnarok dropped warp in the Kunara System, where a starship was crippled near orbit of a class Y planet.

    "Captain, Kunara Prime is home to a Tholian minefield, which is why the ship was damaged in the first place, and your ship has just detected a Tholian scouting party heading towards the system on patrol," described Aramaki.

    Seifer looked at him. "Why did you say 'your ship'? Are you copying and pasting your dialogue? And, Kunara Prime? Surely, you mean Nukara Prime?"

    "Nope. And, as for my describetization: It's the parameters of the setting. I'm just trying to be as accurate as possible," he countered.

    The Captain nodded. "Fine. But accuracy begets tedium; whatever that means. Tractor beam the crippled Reliant-class starship to the surface to escape detection so we can think fast on how we plan to get everyone out of newly annexed Tholian space— Damn! Now I'm doing it."

    "Sir," started Moggs as the Ragnarok tractor-beamed the other Federation starship down to the red, hot surface, "I think you mean Miranda-class, do you not?"

    Seifer blinked, confused, as the two vessels were now out of sensor range of the enemy. "Wait. I don't recognize this ship at all? Computer, enhance!"

    "Calculating!" the computer shouted as the pixelized image of a Starfleet vessel, landed on the dirt, became clearer.

    Tomsin worked his operations controls. "Resolution now at 74 DPI."

    "You're relieved, Tomsin! Clearly we need an upgrade. Also, that vessel doesn't look like one of ours? Its nacelles are hull-covered tubes?" Seifer examined. "It's registering as a Mayflower-type! I've never heard of that!"

    Suddenly, the viewscreen switched to a hail from the other vessel. "That is because we're not from your universe, sir," said the officer in a yellow shirt from across the way. "I am Captain Allana Montoyez of the Kelvin-timeline 23rd century Federation starship Dynex. We were investigating the strange anomalies in this place when those same anomalies sent us careening through dimensions into your Prime-timeline!"

    "That's a hell of an explanation and awareness of timelines for a difference in nacelles, but that doesn't explain how you heard what I said before you hailed me," said Seifer.

    But then Moggs interrupted with the much needed-to-know stakes for all to consider. "Captain! The gravity and atmosphere on this Demon-class planet is far too high for the Dynex and will be crushed, cooked and choked out alive if we don't get out of here soon. On the other hand, I project three hours waiting-time for the Tholian's to pass through this system without incident, unless you want them to swarm?"

    "I would like them to swarm. Just to see that happen," answered Seifer. "Are you saying I would never enjoy the visuals of swarming ships? How randomized their flight patterns would be. Glorious!"

    Then Montoyez interrupted from the view screen. "If you'll indulge us, Captain, perhaps you could direct us to the space-time anomaly so that we can be sent back to our action-packed, corridor-running, lens-flare timeline for more high-octane adventures. Seriously, this place is so dreary by comparison."

    "Uh, first of all, we destroy ships on the daily. I've murdered millions in self-defence. Secondly, your intersection here has already caused a split of a new timeline," stated Seifer. "In fact, everything we do causes new timelines in an infinite multiverse."

    Montoyez grumbled. "Preposterous! There are only two timelines: Yours and mine; and perhaps mirror versions of each. Then there's your Destiny timeline, now that I consider it. If you're wondering how I know of all this, our 23rd century computers are far more advanced than your 25th century ones."

    "Wait a second. According to our scans, you calculate stardates by including the year in them? That's madness!" Seifer claimed while checking a console.

    The other officer stood in defiance. "At least our stardates in our time aren't all over the place! Fire everything!"

    "Both your societies are equally insipid!" interrupted a Tholian voice. Before the officers could act, a Tholian Orb Weaver, the originator of the voice, flew in, followed by two more, blasting tetryon beams at them on the surface. "Your high-octane transmissions were detectable even by us!"

    Aramaki and Edwards immediately started the Ragnarok back on return firing and launching off the ground. The Dynex followed suit, taking off, but instead their phasers popped like mini torpedo blasts.

    "Even your weapons are messed up! Ugh," complained Seifer. "And why are there anomalies in this area anyway? It seems highly irregular for space in general."

    Moggs replied, "The Tholian Assembly is often involved with multiple dimensions in spacetime. It was reported they installed outposts in a universe completely full of tribble. They called it Tribble Space."

    "Yeah, um, that one I've been to," answered Seifer as he subsequently saw the Dynex blow an Orb Weaver to pieces before heading itself back towards the space-time fluxuation that brought them here in the first place.

    Edwards popped up. "Pursue? Pursue?"

    "Not if it means we get sent to their maddening alternate reality!" recoiled Seifer before shivering, uncontrollably. "Ugh, tribbles. Perhaps the idea we're constantly recreating new timelines is a bad one. What else could be there? Let's just have what's existing exist and hope it remains extra-dimensional."

    The Ragnarok covered the Dynex as the Mayflower-type ship disappeared through its space-time portal. Then, Aramaki and Edwards coordinated quantum torpedo fire with range, taking out the last two attacking Orb Weaver ships whilst exiting the atmosphere back into space.

    "Well, everything is back to normal," Seifer declared, taking a seat in his chair. "The lesson here being that what comes from our actions should remain localized to our timeline and in order to facilitate it as our responsibility."

    The Caitian science officer asked, "Is that what alternate-you would say as well?"

    "Funny, Mr. Moggs," Seifer shot him a knowing look. "Now, Aramaki, mark this mission as complete and delete it from our records. A universe where their 23rd century technology is more advanced than ours? Not on my watch."

    The tactical officer confirmed, "Information has been purged, sir."

    "Does anyone want to head to the shipyards and check out the Miranda/Reliant-class ships? Could be educational and satisfying nacelle-wise," the Captain offered. "Done! Engage!"
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