Book One - Chapter four
The Moon call.
When I finished having lunch with the two Dabo girls, I returned to my office to see how Mr. Og was getting along.
The lunch was a real experience in off world eating habits.
At the Officer’s Mess buffet, both girls had about eight link sauseges apiece, covered with pancake syrup, about three glasses of fruit juice topped off with about three table spoons of sugar.
Talk about a sweet tooth.
Og had finished his work application.
He then cruised the net trying to get assistance from the Frengi ambassador, of course none was given.
He was then charged by the ambassador for the service call, from funds that he did not have.
Og’s work application was bounced back for an endorsement from me as to why a Ferengi was even allowed an application at all.
The application was resubmitted and forwarded with my approval, subject of course to the Bajoran Embassy’s approval.
I then had to inform the Bajoran Embassy of my reasoning behind hiring the Ferengi, and requested approval, because experienced help was, and is turning out to be, hard to find.
Otherwise it could take months to get the recovery operation off and running.
I was sure the Bajoran Embassy would do a records check on Og, verifying his certificates, and making sure he wasn’t persona non grata on Bajor.
I then sent the whole crew over to base housing with temporary orders for lodging.
I told Og; that after he had his lunch, to make peace with his creditors, or the Bajorans wouldn’t approve his application.
I really didn’t know if it would make any difference, but he wasn’t sure either.
I gave him my PADD file on the requirements for re-equipping the Grayson, from the bone yard stocks.
I wanted him to start working on them with base supply as soon as possible.
He grumbled something about not being a slave, but promised to do his best.
I told him I wanted an initial report in forty eight hours.
“Yes, you’re Excellency, Good day, Sir,” was his sarcastic reply.
The Dabo girls’ chirped; “Good day, Captain, Mr. Sir.”
One down and ninety nine more tasks to do until Bajor, I thought.
It was time to recheck on crew applications.
Ron Thornton called in and informed me that he had six engine room personnel that he had collard.
Three other wives, besides Ron’s wife Holly, would also be hiring on board. That showed me some progress.
I didn’t know how Ron got hooked up with Holly, but I knew she was a good impulse engine tech.
I replied that they needed to send in their applications to Fleet Headquarters for civilian tech positions on the Grayson.
They should be rated as eights or nines and if there was any problem with their ratings in the applications, Ron was to give me a call.
In my office computer mail I found a flag from a Commander Hayes on Luna port.
This should be interesting, I thought.
It would be a good guess on how I was going to get personnel from the moon, to here on Earth, on a Bajoran budget.
Contacting Commander Hayes wasn’t so bad; it was his personal comm. link.
I introduced myself, I knew him from way back when I was first made Warrant Officer.
“Hello Chief. I’m glad you called. I have a problem that I hope you can help me out with.”
“Me help you Sir? I’m the one who’s looking for the hired help. What could be your problem that’s worse than mine?"
"You know the score on the Grayson, and her mission, don’t you?”
“Yes Chief, I know all about it and by the way have you ever worked with Klingons?”
“Klingons! I know the Federation is on peaceful terms with them now, but what the hell do you want me to do with Klingons?”
“Personally the big bastards scare the hell out of me. They smell like month old laundry and they drink like fish."
"We had to clean up a lot of messes after Klingon pirates hit some of our freighters."
"I’m sure as hell not lovey dovey over the prospect with having to associate with them either, Sir. With that background, what’s your proposition?”
“Well they would make up a readymade crew for you Chief.”
“Commander I’m supposed to get the Grayson to Bajor. If I let any Klingon near that ship they’ll hijack it for sure.”
“Hold on and listen to me for a second will you Chief. I think we can work out a deal with these people if we work our cards right."
"They have an old Monarch Class IX Deep Space freighter that has seen its better days."
"They almost flat landed here about six months ago."
"The ship needs a refit and they don’t have any credit."
"Their cargo didn’t cover much when they sold what they could."
"All the ship, and them, have been doing is taking up space, in orbit over my launch areas.”
“Since they off loaded their crews, they have been drinking up all their profits, and now half of their crew is in the brig for fighting, and public disturbances.”
“And you want me to take these birds off your hands, Commander?”
“Now wait a minute Chief, just listen to me and let me finish."
"I was an Engineer myself at one time. I remember the cleanup at Wolf 359. I captained one of those recovery ships too, remember?”
“After that I started looking for a nice steady base job with no bodies floating around."
"I read your record, and I know about the Grayson, so I have for you a plausible suggestion.”
“Yes Sir, sorry I interrupted.”
“You need something with mass to move the scrap that’s floating around out there by Cardassia."
"You also know there were two big engagements out there in those shipping lanes."
"Well these Klingons have a P-type freighter. It’s a piece of crap and has only half a crew, but I think their Captain will be ready to bargain."
"It’s a clan ship as far as I can tell, and probably afraid of their own raiders in their present condition."
"You can talk to your people, maybe make a deal.”
“A pusher type you say. It would be a great help Sir, as of now I was planning to have to work with modified shuttles, and work bees."
"I’ll talk to the Bajoran Embassy and see what they will do."
"Maybe they will agree to a leasing agreement with the Klingons.”
“Look Chief, if I have to I can refit her enough to get her to Bajor."
"With all that crap floating out there, you should have enough spare parts to make that old freighter last a thousand years."
"Just get someone to pay their bills and get them out of my traffic lanes."
"I’ll even bail out the bastards that are in the brig, to get them out of here. I’d really appreciate it Chief”
“Okay Sir. Have that Klingon captain take a look at our mission, it’s listed on the net."
"See if you can convince him what is in his best interest and to have him give me a call.”
“I’ll notify the Bajoran Embassy about what we are suggesting."
"You did give me a few ideas about the contract for their services. Thank you for your interest in our mission, sir.”
“You are welcome Chief. I wish you good luck, and I’m glad I’m not going with you."
"As soon as our Captain Kluge sobers up in his holding cell, I’ll explain his alternatives and have him call you within twenty four hours. This is Hayes out.”
Blazes; I really had to do some smart thinking now.
I called the base lodging office where Og, and the Dabos, were staying to see if they were settled in, they were.
I then called their rooms to see if they wanted some dinner. They said yes, but it would have to be on me because they had no credits.
I was then asked when could Mr. Og start getting paid.
I told them that was task number 22 of my 100 task list in the preparations for the mission to Bajor.
“As for now. lets go eat”.