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Unofficial Literary Challenge #42: "Winter of Doom!"

hawku001xhawku001x Member Posts: 10,221 Arc User
edited December 2017 in Ten Forward
Welcome to Unofficial Literary Challenge #42: "Winter of Doom!"

Prompt 1: "Face the Kramp'Ihri" from @hawku001x
  • The ancient tradition of Terran Winter Celebrations is such a festive and playful time less the demonic interference of Earth's own mythological Krampus fused with the demons of the Klingon Empire. Your Captain, participating in Q's Winter Wonderland, is suddenly pitted against the fearsome Kramp'Ihri, a gruesome mashup responsible for kidnapping Gingerbread folks. How does your Captain fare against the massive Gift Stealer, its switch and its loyal minions?

Prompt 2: "Good Ones Go to Heaven, Bad Ones Go Everywhere" from @patrickngo
  • An Academy student your Captain has sponsored has gone off the reservation in a big way-- It could be partying, smuggling, honor code violations of some kind, something... And as the sponsor, your reputation in Starfleet is placed at risk. The Admiralty tap you to reel the kid in and find out what set them off, and possibly to find out how to undo the damage they've done.

Prompt 3: "Now Listen Here, Captain" from @damzelltrill
  • Every Captain has someone they will stop and consider what they have to say no matter how crazy it sounds: Picard had Guinan, Janeway had Tuvok, Sisko had Dax and Kira, Archer humored T'Pol, as did Kirk to Spock. Write about a time your person came to you. Did you heed their advice or blow them off? How did things turn out? Did they say "I told you so?"

As usual, no NSFW content.

The discussion thread is here.

The LC Submission thread is here

Index of previous ULCs (click ULC 31 for earlier entries):
Index of previous ULC Annuals:
/moretextmoretext
/moretextjustincase
Post edited by hawku001x on
q_winter3.jpg

Comments

  • hawku001xhawku001x Member Posts: 10,221 Arc User
    edited December 2017
    Captain Elektra of the Ty'Gokor-class I.K.S. Valentine stood before the Kramp'lhri Watcher, in disbelief, upon the Ice Gazebo in Q's Winter Wonderland.

    "So, you're a hideous fangirl of some kind?" the Orion and Klingon Defense Force officer questioned.

    The skantily clad Fek'lhri with sharp teeth continued. "No one but me understands how tenacious the Kramp'lhri is! Challenge the Kramp'lhri with honor, creature!"

    "Oh my. You've got spunk, don't you?" Elektra said, impressed. "I was like you once: devoted, faithful. It's not all its cracked up to be."

    From behind her, the voice of Menchez, a Klingon and Commanding officer, broke through the reverie. "You were more than that, Captain. I posit that you had more backbone and destiny than an army of Nausicaans. Not to mention, once said-battalion was actually defeated by you."

    "Weren't you and your ship last seen being hijacked by Augments?" Elektra replied, turning to face him whilst changing the subject. "You were said to be heard screaming in consternation?"

    Menchez refuted. "That was from an Epohh bite! But, yeah, my enemy one-upped me by threatening to not-kill my crew and I in a heat of dishonor. Sufficed to say, we're still hijacked. Though, our captors and I did find a Q-Junior copy under a sewer pipe on Kentar. Turns out that guy is everywhere."

    "Well, positioning and self-establishing is how I won all my fights," elaborated Elektra. "Not that I've had much to fight for since the Iconian War. Seems like that thing ended faster than it started without any sense that it was happening in the first place."

    Suddenly, the bellowing voice of an extra-dimensional entity rang through the Wonderland. "Kramp'lhri has returned! Today is a good day to cry! Hahaha!"

    "He has been spotted heading towards the racetracks! Glorious!" exclaimed the Watcher. "I'll wager you can't save any of the gingerbread folk he has taken. Still, it might be fun to watch you try."

    Elektra smiled to her before being transported away. "A woman after my own heart."

    ---

    Confronted by the chaotic violence of the giant Kramp'lhri, Elektra joined several others in firing their winter weapons. The result was a shower of coal flanked by switch attacks.

    "Naughty, naughty, naughty!" declared the immensely, 6 meter high monstrosity as he deflected snowballs, gummy blasts, and freeze rays from the various participants.

    Elektra smirked. "Oh, dear. Aren't you quite the sight to take in? I can see why the Watcher was so enamored with you. Unfortunately, love is blind."

    "Yooouuuu have been naughty this year!" the beast announced as Elektra blasted her Unrestricted Aggression gun and fired an entourage of foam dart bursts.

    The attack suddenly caused Kramp'lhri to disperse into a cloud of billowing, spinning dust, escaping into the gazebo and rematerializing upon the snow on the other side.

    "Ha! My women's scorn knows no bounds," Elektra said, after she and the others caught up to him and reopened fire. "Men like you care not for others, but rather just yourselves! As attractive as that is, I should have expected as much from a newborn Earth myth and Fek'lhri amalgamation."

    Menchez pulled up beside her with his gun and blasted a barrage of icicles into the beast. "Actually, according to rumour, this creature was, in fact, the same one that revealed himself unto legend in 16th century Earth's Europe." And then, to explain, "I'm assuming a time travel predestination paradox through a Q visit, as those are the most satisfying."

    "This thing was real?? Well, I suppose we're all aliens, so that shouldn't be surprising," Elektra said. "Not that we see ourselves as the aliens. Point is, do you think Kramp'lhri is kind of hot now? I mean, look at him, right?"

    Before the Klingon could respond, the build-up of attacks caused Kramp'lhri to lose several large gift boxes, then-splayed all around the attacking group. Just as Elektra attempted to open her own, the giant ran over and plopped his gift-stealing basket over her head.

    "Naughty, naughty!"

    Elektra struggled to get it off, realizing now that her presumptuous lowered-defenses allowed yet another man to win her over. "Kramp'lhri, forget the Watcher! Run away with me! I've been a baaaadd girl!"

    "Captain," Menchez said in shock. "Perhaps I was right about your backbone, which clearly can support not only your stance but this year's Breen ship in any gravity environment." He watched as Elektra cut through the basket with her oversized Black Nanopulse Mek'leth.

    She then threw it into the unrelenting mammoth. It burst into spinning dust once more, releasing the gingerbread folk whilst he disappeared back into his pocket universe. "Nooooo! Not yet! There are still naughty children!"

    "What the Gre'thor? Why is that mek'leth so large? I just wanted to appeal to him, not send him away??" denounced Elektra.

    Next, the Watcher's voice rang through. "The magnificent Kramp'lhri may be gone for now, but he will return! Wondering how well everyone did? Behold!"

    "What?" Elektra said, confused and looking around as there was a long, drawn-out silence. "Anyhow, I suppose I forgot how fun an allegiance could be. I'll forego my previous naiveté." She turned to see Menchez putting his weapon away.

    The elderly man nodded. "Qapla'! Nice work, Captain. You truly have the heart of a Klingon warrior; unlike the others in our fleet. I may be forsaken, but that has not prevented me from learning about the insolent dishonour that has occurred most recently upon a planet known as Raatooras."

    "I have not forgotten about our fleet, Captain," Elektra said.

    Menchez clenched his fist. "Those incompetent petaQ allowed that planet's population to perish in utter failure! Since I'm out of commission, I want you to put an end to Captains Sigon, Deloss and Kronen. That is an order."

    "Seems somewhat extreme, but Klingons did go bald once," she said, recalling. "As you command, considering what has happened here today. Or is it still night? The sky has mysteriously stayed the same for days now."

    The two looked up and around, curiously. Echoes of Q-Junior's diabolical laughter suddenly rang through the Wonderland. "Hahahaha!"
    Post edited by hawku001x on
    q_winter3.jpg
  • cmdrscarletcmdrscarlet Member Posts: 5,137 Arc User
    Off Limits

    --

    Looking out the window of an observation deck of Earth Spacedock, Kathryn watched the giant starship; it’s bright white hull showing graceful curves and angles. She sighed, leaning onto the rail and continued to gaze at the Odyssey-class while it slowly passed orbiting the massive station. An announcement was made over the intercom about a shuttle flight departure expected and a console nearby signaled some aspect of the station. Various voices and footsteps were like whispers behind Kathryn. It was easy to tune out all the ambient noise.

    A pair of hands griped the railing to Kathryn’s left and she turned to see the visitor. Instantly recognizing the female Captain, she couldn’t hide her excitement. “Captain Carter!”

    Monica Carter held her own smile and saluted to Kathryn, who quickly recovered and returned the salute. Carter then opened her arms and two women embraced for several seconds. Pushing away from each other, they held hands for a few more seconds before Monica signaled toward the stairs to another level. “Care for a drink?”

    Kathryn nodded, “I could use one. How have you been?”

    Captain Carter stood over ten centimeters taller than Kathryn. Her dark brown hair fell in long waves to the middle of her back and billowed with each long step. The younger officer had to quicken her pace to keep up. “I’ve been very well. The Retributor is keeping me busy. With all the Hur’q attacks, we are being sent to help put out fires all over the Gamma Quadrant lately.” Monica’s deep voice commanded attention and Kathryn remembered how cadets seemed enthralled by the seriousness of her sultry voice. “What about you? I see Solaris is flying strong.”

    “I could not ask for a finer crew.” Kathryn smiled. “We are here for some R&R, besides the expected tune up and diagnostics. Interestingly, I was almost ordered to transfer command to another ship.”

    Monica scoffed. “I heard about that.” She looked over her shoulders and then leaned toward Kathryn to whisper. “It seems becoming an Admiral makes you a bureaucrat as well. Space me naked if I ever get promoted to that rank.”

    Kathryn snickered before composing herself as they passed Admiral Quinn’s office. Once clear, the pair of Captains giggled like playful children. They entered the main lobby and casually turned toward Club 47. “By the way, I want to thank you again for being an inspiration since my Academy days. Your lectures are still the stuff of legend, or so I hear from new recruits on my ship.”

    Captain Carter waved away the compliment. “To think those were the peaceful years!”

    The pair continued the small talk as they walked into Club 47. The blaring music and strobe lights were cacophonous as they ordered drinks and once they passed through the audio shielding into the lounge did conversation resume.

    After sipping from her drink, Monica sat back into her chair and looked through the giant viewport overlooking Earth. “Do you recall my lecture on successful starship Captains?”

    Kathryn quickly swallowed from her glass and nodded. “Let me see: never dwell on death, know your ship stem to stern, get hands dirty with the crew, orders without thought can kill, and love leads to loneliness.”

    Monica was impressed. “Not bad at all.”

    Smiling, Kathryn said, “I’ve always wondered if that list was comprehensive.”

    “Never, but for cadets, it’s a start.” Captain Carter took a sip.

    Kathryn leaned in as if to tell a secret. “I’ve been curious; do you really believe people in our position shouldn’t be in a close relationship?”

    Monica raised an eyebrow, leaned forward and smirked. “Absolutely, the last thing you need to worry or think about is someone else who takes space in your heart. Once you start caring intimately for another person, your judgment will be biased, no matter what discipline or training you have.”

    “So, in your opinion, it’s a maxim?”

    Shaking a finger and lifting her glass, Monica replied, “It sounds that way, but is really meant from a human perspective. Generally speaking, the idea has merit and is logical. Don’t get me wrong, love for family is mutually exclusive. And as you may recall, the suggestion is your duties to the ship and crew are more important than yourself.” She pointed a thumb to the large window. “The black sea is unforgiving and conflict from without only makes it more dangerous. Conflict from within increases odds of failure.”

    Kathryn agreed. “Sometimes there is enough drama on board.”

    “As long as it doesn’t interfere with the function of the ship, then “drama” is expected. But, as a Captain, all of that is to be segregated.” Monica pointed at Kathryn. “You are not to be a part of that.”

    “But you can’t help falling in love with another person.”

    Shrugging nonchalantly, Monica replied coolly. “Too bad.”

    Kathryn snorted with a smile and questioned before taking a sip, “A cautionary tale then?”

    Monica turned her head and licked her lips. “Tell me Captain Beringer, since taking the center chair … have you fallen in love with anyone?”

    Surprised by the question, Kathryn gulped quick forcing a cough. “I … what?”

    “It’s a simple question, from a certain point of view. You said it earlier: you can’t help falling in love. So … have you?”

    Kathryn blushed. She felt compelled to be open about herself with Monica. They met during Kathryn’s academy days and she considered Monica Carter a mentor more than a friend. On occasion they shared messages over the years since Kathryn achieved her rank, even if it was an accelerated promotion due to the stress of war. Such correspondence, and advice for Kathryn, was mostly about starship management. Sometimes they ventured into personal matters, but this topic was new.

    “Well … no. Not really. I admit my helmsman has a particular ‘look’ that’s hard to ignore. He’s on the short-list for away missions and I thought it was about his skill set. But lately I’ve started thinking if it was more than that.”

    Monica smirked. “So, there have been interests one way or another, but nothing approaching a ‘date’ in the traditional sense?”

    Kathryn raised her glass as if to sip and then looked out the window. “It’s been a long time.”

    “There’s a good reason for that; part of Starfleet training is to respect the space of others on a professional level. Doing so builds trust and a crew without it is a ship without a crew.” Monica pointed a finger to Kathryn and herself. “We’re only human after all.” She looked out the window. “But if you want the stripes, if the chair is your home, then your crew is off-limits.”
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