Double Phoenix

Discussion in 'Fan Fiction' started by Hawku, May 7, 2021.

  1. Hawku

    Hawku Captain Captain

    Joined:
    Nov 7, 2005
    Location:
    Ontario, Canada
    [​IMG]

    To boldy re-go! Challenged myself to rewrite my old fanfic episodes. This thread collects my stories from the late 24th century when Daniel and Gotens are in command (which takes place before my other thread "Legends of the Phoenix" where Seifer is in command).

    The originals of these were written in chatfic, so the fun was changing the format to prose and trying to make them make some semblance of sense. In each, I try to maintain the beats of the original, but likely miss the mark of traditional story structure because of this. But these are silly, so it doesn't really matter. These rewrites are a labour-of-love because they were my first fan fictions, even more ridiculous than my other threads. Enjoy!

    The Phoenix-series of ships were transwarp-testing vessels destroyed one after the other in a short period of time and the U.S.S. Phoenix-X was the twenty-fifth of those.

    Navigation:

    Index:
     
    Last edited: Jan 20, 2022
  2. Hawku

    Hawku Captain Captain

    Joined:
    Nov 7, 2005
    Location:
    Ontario, Canada
    Author's notes: This takes place in the late 24th century. My cousin and I began this as random RP chats, collecting them as episodes. Through the years they've been tweaked and edited and retconned. My best guess is the original of this was done sometime in 1996. I did another chatfic rewrite of this in 2007, and this specific rewrite incorporates both incarnations. This rewrite was done in December 2020.

    Episode 1A: Commander Night Gotens is ambushed by the Dominion, prompting the support of the U.S.S. Phoenix, US.S. Xena and U.S.S. Ixion.

    Star Trek: Phoenix-X
    The Tiloniam System

    Somewhere, out in the far off cosmos of the unknown, the Class 2 shuttle Lime chugged through the cold out-reaches of space while its two occupants, Gotens and Dan tackled the controls like two inexperienced high school students.

    "So, say if this control panel were a lady, I'd slowly tap her buttons until her inertial dampeners were recalibrated. Then, boom! Warp speed baby," Dan bragged.

    Night Gotens recoiled in disgust. "Ugh! Enough already! I have two hours of fan fiction reading to do. This writer supposedly copies the story and character-types, but the difference is that there's an added fork."

    "That's the worst thing I've ever heard."

    The Commander held up his PADD. "Hey, writers nowadays don't create their own material. They add on to other people's." He sat up. "Now let's get back to work, mapping out this system and so on."

    "I finished an hour ago," the Ensign explained. "You know, if the Federation and the Cardassians would stop increasing their borders, we wouldn't have to map out these new star systems."

    Commander Night Gotens was taken aback. "Did I say you could state your opinion? No! In fact, I specifically said that you were to change your opinions to match my own!"

    ---

    Meanwhile, the Nebula-class U.S.S. Phoenix trekked itself upon the vacuum of else-wise-space. Its Commanding officer sat diligently on the Bridge.

    "Sir, are you okay?" Armond, a Human and the Tactical officer asked. "You seem to be squinting a lot."

    Daniel adjusted his posture. "Yes, I'm quite fine, Lieutenant. Thanks for your concern. If you must know, I was merely admiring space itself and the universe as a whole."

    "I completely understand, Admiral. Just the other day I was saying to GoyCho that space was the final frontier, and that these were the voyages of the starship— Well, I don't want to bore you with all the details."

    But before they could go on, Commander Avery stepped off the turbolift. "What's going on here? Are you guys socializing? We have a command structure for a reason!"

    "Oh, lighten up, Avery," Daniel dismissed. "You need a girlfriend or something."

    ---

    Back on the shuttle, Gotens and Ensign Dan found themselves slap-fighting for the helm controls.

    "We're not leaving until you admit you had a good time with your old Commander!"

    Ensign Dan struggled mid-combat. "But, I haven't. We serve aboard the U.S.S. Xena and I do all these ship-chores so that I can finally get that promotion, but you never give it to me!"

    "Aww. I can sense the denial in your words," Gotens stopped. "Okay, we can go now."

    ---

    As the shuttle Lime warped out of there, the Phoenix suddenly picked them up on sensors.

    "They've just gone to warp," Armond reported.

    Daniel perked. "What? How rude. Hail them!" After a communications beep, he began, "You think you can escape from me? My ship is the fastest in the fleet. If you don't respond, I will have to ask you to lower your shields, and board your little shuttlecraft."

    ---

    As the shuttle received the hail, the two officers found a lag in communications before dropping warp and being over-taken by the Nebula-class starship.

    "I recognize that voice," Gotens recalled. "I met him years ago in a previous Trill host. He's really friendly and understanding."

    When the Phoenix loomed over their windows, Daniel appeared on screen. "How come you ignored my hail? We detected no malfunction in communications." And then, "Security, I want your men to be ready to board that shuttle."

    "Oh. No, wait. The opposite of that."

    ---

    Meanwhile, the Galaxy-class U.S.S. Xena drifted listlessly through the empty confines of space. Its Captain paced the Bridge.

    "Where are those two? That Ensign has my favourite travel-mug! You know, the one with the coffee nebula that appears when it heats up?"

    Her Tactical officer, Onegera, tapped at the controls. "They get the Tiloniam system mapping mission, while we get patrol."

    "Sneaking in exploration during this war is like a drug these days, it's risky but, oh does it feel so good," Captain Aeris shuddered. "As long as we don't get any surprises, we'll be good."

    An alert beeping on Onergera's console snapped them out of it. "Captain, I'm receiving a distress signal from the U.S.S. Ixion. A fleet of Jem'Hadar attack cruisers are heading towards the location of the shuttlecraft!"

    "What!? I said no surprises!"

    ---

    In the Tiloniam system, several Jem'Hadar attack ships dropped warp and opened fire upon the Phoenix. Daniel quickly beamed Gotens and the Ensign aboard and raised shields.

    "Okay. Let's prepare battle," Daniel gloomed before witnessing the shuttle exploding from fire. "Wow. More rudeness."

    Avery turned to him. "The only coarseness here is yours, Admiral. I've received intel about you in a way that decides I'll be taking command."

    "Now's not the time for one of your posturing dance-sessions, Commander. Remember that waltz for a promotion and you kept stepping on my feet?"

    The Human pointed accusingly. "I mean I intend mutiny! For far too long has the crew been silent about the truth of what you are." And then, "A Changeling!"

    "Well, I never," Daniel clutched his chest, defensively.

    But a crescendo of an experimental torpedo hit and console explosion suddenly knocked Avery to the floor. "Shields down to 10-percent!" Armond reported.

    "Engineering to Bridge. The warp core is experiencing multi-fluctuations all of a sudden. The core is emitting a pink glow."

    The operations officer Kayl shrugged. "I like pink."

    ---

    As the Xena and Ixion dropped warp to join the fight, the head Vorta and Jem'Hadar First, aboard the Jem'Hadar lead ship Lyngon-938, checked on the status of everything.

    "The experimental J3 torpedo seems to be launching just fine. Although, it should have destroyed the Phoenix," reported First Mata'Katan.

    The Vorta, Feylou, stepped over. "The Dominion will fix it. Then it will exact vengeance upon the Federation. Oh, how I loathe and despise that white-picket fence organization."

    "Why do we not just annihilate them and be rid of them?"

    Feylou looked at him. "Right??"

    "Listen, Vorta master. There is something I must confess I have been finding myself thinking about lately. They are not thoughts I am proud of. What if we, the Dominion, just learned to get along with the Federation? I'm sure we could, you know, work out some treaties, or perhaps a peace?"

    The shorter alien spat. "You fool! You've been in the Alpha Quadrant too long! Someone shoot him quickly!" He watched as Third Vak'Natak pulled out a polaron compression pistol and blasted a purple energy bolt into the First's chest. "Now you will be the First."

    "But, what about Second Lat'Takteka?"

    Feylou nodded. "I'll be pitting you two to a death match. Then we will complete our suicide mission! Priorities."

    ---

    Meanwhile, as several Jem'Hadar attack ships changed course for the sun, the Captain of the U.S.S. Ixion was prompted to set its sights on their actions.

    "It looks like those clone-babies are firing modified torpedoes into the Tiloniam star," Nadine reported from tactical.

    Wasyati turned. "There's only one conceivable result from any firing of any modified anything into any star: Boomy-boom boom!"

    "How are we going to assist the population of the inhabited planet in this system?" Grot asked from the helm. "Assuming we're on that end of the Starfleet spectrum."

    Dale popped up from a console. "We could assist those transport ships in its orbit by boosting their transporters!"

    "Punch it!" Wasyati ordered. "That's a new thing I hope catches on."

    ---

    As the Ixion warp-jumped within the system, the crew on the Phoenix worked tirelessly to combat who was left while finding a workaround for the J3 torpedoes.

    "Captain. I've been studying the effects of these experimental weapons and I believe they're repellant to nadion particles," Armond explained. "If we can reroute phaser energy into the shields, then any torpedo coming this way would be ricocheted. Fantastically."

    Daniel nodded. "Seeing how that is techno-babble, then you're probably right. Make it so!"

    "Engineering to Bridge. The warp core is over-loading. We have to eject??"

    The Admiral sat up. "Of course! The pink warp core is a result of matter/anti-matter infection! Techno-babble!"

    "Yeah, I'm done with pink," Kayl bookended.

    The circular hatch slid open from under the Phoenix, jettisoning its reaction chamber while a veritable onslaught of Starfleet ingenuity by Armond led the ship to begin ricocheting J3 torpedoes left and right, hitting attack ship after attack ship.

    ---

    The Xena destroyed a besieging Jem'Hadar attacker and turned its sights on the Phoenix as the Tiloniam star began to bulge and erupt in the background.

    "Is it just me or is it getting really hot in this star system? Also, poor Jem'Hadar. Does no one care about them?" Lieutenant Commander Wing teared up.

    Aeris snapped. "They went to war with us! Never mind. Is that the Phoenix? They look badly damaged." The crew observed as a Jem'Hadar ship exploded near Daniel's ship.

    "Affirmative," Wing scanned. "Their warp core has been deep-sixed and their shields are down from some over-the-top Starfleet-jury-rigged-backwarding."

    The Captain stood. "As we do. Like, every time. Beam everyone over before that star goes explodey bam-bam! Damn. Language gets thin during high-stakes action."

    ---

    The last transports around Tiloniam III warped away with the Ixion alike as the star's unnatural, accelerated shockwave moved to envelop everything in the system.

    A monitor in Admiral Vincent Cloud's office aboard Starbase 55 displayed the Xena beaming all crew off the Phoenix and warping out of there. An ominous Admiral Theseus reviewing a PADD was joined by an unobtrusive Cloud and Captain Cid.

    "This is it," Theseus realized. "The first day of a new era."

    Cloud squinted. "What are you talking about? All that top-secret tech-talk from the secret meetings you keep having in here? How does that relate to the crew of the Phoenix? Is this line of questioning some kind of backdoor connection to be realized at a later date?"

    "Guards, by order of Starfleet Command, escort Admiral Cloud to Sickbay."

    Two security officers apprehended the over-bearing Human Admiral in his own office, dragging him away. "What!? No! Let go of me!"

    "To have his memory erased."

    Cid glanced over, unphased. "While the Phoenix has been in service, we've secretly tested and burned at least twenty-four Phoenix-named ships in a short timespan. The latest one has shown the most non-explodey tendencies." He paused. "You're going to deploy the Phoenix-X?"

    "Affirmative. Contact that Admiral Daniel, or should I say, Captain Daniel? I'm not demoting him. Starfleet Command is." Theseus smirked. "You'll think of a reason. Muahahahaha!"

    ---

    "Captain's log, Stardate 51599.7: The ship has been damaged horribly! But instead of waiting for repairs I am to take command of the latest in a line of fatal transwarp-project ships coincidentally of the same name. The Starfleet naming guy was out of office."

    ---

    With the Xena and the newly-launched Prometheus-class U.S.S. Phoenix-X docked at Deep Space 9, Commander Gotens joined Captain Aeris and an accumulating crew on the Prominade.

    "So, I'm getting transferred to the new ship? But I didn't do anything that whole conflict?" Gotens queried after-the-fact. "I literally got lost and ended up in Shipping and Receiving."

    Aeris shrugged. "They probably concluded your lack of action would free up room to keep an eye on Daniel."

    "Well, I do excel at nothing," Gotens realized. "Except for that one time. What I'm saying is, I'm proud to have been under your slacker-enabling command."

    She smiled before they both turned to see Captain Daniel take his place over a pedestal to address the crew.

    "Remans! Lend me your ears," he started. "Sorry, that's a holodeck thing for later. I mean, greetings. I've just received a message from Starfleet. Apparently, I've been too rash and pushy as an Admiral of late."

    Ensign Dan chimed in. "This isn't the only time Daniel's gone hot. The Federation is upset of him."

    "You're relieved of duty!"

    The Ensign sputtered. "But I'm not on duty?"

    "Then," Daniel calculated. "When you go on duty, you'll be relieved!" He next composed himself. "As I was saying. The Phoenix-X is the accumulation of a classified project collecting and testing new tech, which we are now a part of. Our recent Dominion interaction has made us necessary, and possibly other hidden reasons."

    Kayl raised her hand. "What about the Changeling thing that only a select few of us know about? Is it true you're not being jailed and flogged?"

    "Yeah, Lieutenant," Daniel deadpanned. "It's called tolerance. We don’t discriminate based on species in the future."

    Ensign Dan raised his own hand. "But doesn't the fact you're from our wartime enemy raise a bunch of red flags and cause more questions than—"

    "No! You're relieved!" Daniel snapped.

    As the Ensign stomped off, frustrated, and everyone else returned to talking excitedly amongst themselves about their new assignment, Gotens finally observed a moment of peace from the war. His reverie was quickly dashed when Commander Avery stepped over.

    “So, you’re the pathetic one that took my place?” Avery scoured. “I'll be watching you, Gotens. When I'm done with you, your career in Starfleet will be forgotten."

    Gotens opened his arms as Avery walked away. “Can’t scare a slacker, Avery. Failure is our wheelhouse. If I have any say, the Phoenix-X is going to be synonymous with failure! We’ll be failing all the time! Yeah!”

    “He’s gone,” Daniel walked over. “Want to mash-up your stoner style with an Orwellian marshal law type of command?”

    The Commander shook his hand. “Yes! We’ll switch between them like Good Cop/Lazy Cop. Sir, I think this is going to be the start of a beautiful codependency.”
     
    Last edited: Jan 19, 2022
  3. Hawku

    Hawku Captain Captain

    Joined:
    Nov 7, 2005
    Location:
    Ontario, Canada
    Author's notes: The original of this was done sometime in 1996, as an edited RP chat. The first few episodes used to be short enough each to compile as two-in-ones. This rewrite was done in December 2020.

    Episode 1B: The Phoenix-X must team up with the USS Enterprise-E to fight a Borg back-up cube.

    Star Trek: Phoenix-X
    Jello Cubes

    Way out in the distant vacuum of emptiness and horror, the Sovereign-class U.S.S. Enterprise-E trekked itself blissfully through space. Picard took a seat on the Bridge next to Riker.

    "Well, it surely is a relief to have defeated the Borg's second attempt at assimilating Earth last year. I'm glad they didn't send their backup, backup cube, as per Collective Protocol," the Captain posited.

    Riker adjusted his uniform. "Zombies in space is always an adventure, Captain! But what is this backup, backup cube thing you've just nonchalantly referenced for the first time ever?"

    "Oh. You know how the Borg are just glorified computer systems operating for a master user, the Queen, right? Well, systems need redundancies and double backup protocols," Picard connected before the tactical alert console went off. "Anyway, me mentioning it now surely can’t be relevant."

    ---

    Later, the Prometheus-class U.S.S. Phoenix-X sped through transwarp as Captain Daniel entered the Bridge.

    "Alright, guys," he began. "I know I don't have a last name, therefore all Holiday gift cards should include service numbers. Also, we should be meeting up with the Enterprise soon to collect their failed transwarp coils which I think we could use as table legs."

    Soon after, Commander Gotens entered through the turbolift doors. "Captain. Reporting for duty."

    "Great to have you aboard," Daniel enthused.

    Ensign Dan entered from another side. "Captain. Reporting for duty."

    "Great. You're relieved!" Daniel snapped before getting back to his command chair.

    As the grumbling Ensign left, Gotens took a position next to him. "Do I, uh, get a chair? Is this a one-chair Bridge?"

    "No time for that," Daniel dismissed, getting up. "I want you to tell me when we reach that sleek, movie-level assault cruiser. You have the Bridge. NO ONE sits on my tush-cush."

    After he left, Gotens hovered around the chair hesitantly.

    ---

    Later, the Phoenix-X dropped transwarp and approached a horrifically damaged Enterprise-E. The screen clicked on for a disheveled Picard and Riker.

    "Phoenix-X to the Enterprise. Are you okay?" Daniel expressed in genuine concern for the legacy ship. “You look smudgey.”

    The bald Captain adjusted his uniform. "We have been attacked by a Borg backup cube. They are on their way to the Sol system, but our systems will be back online any minute."

    "That's a relief," Daniel breathed. "I thought, for a second, you had been assimilated."

    Picard smirked. "Captain, I have! In fact, I should've heard them coming, but their double-backup support-nature facilitates bare-bones transmission and operation. They veered off from us when they recognized me."

    "We'll prepare a fleet and begin an intercept defensive," Daniel established. "What ships do you want to work with? Are you still friends with the Defiant, or are they still miffed at you for that whole leaving-them-adrift thing?"

    ---

    Sometime after, the Phoenix-X and Enterprise-E dropped out of light-speeds into normal space, rendezvousing with a task force of Starfleet ships outside the Trunkola system as an intercept on the Borg's way to the Sol system.

    "The Borg's transwarp has been disrupted using the transwarp coils in their direct path," Armond reported from tactical.

    Daniel nodded. "See? Broken things have a use. I want those things prepped as table legs as soon as we're done."

    "Sir! The cube has entered the system and is heading right for us!" Lieutenant Rock reported as said-cube began to loom before the task force. "Also, I'm getting the elated battle chills. The Doctor says they will pass."

    Standing, the Captain began orders, "Right! Raise shields! Return fire! Bring us about, mark 20 by 626!" With red alert blaring, all Starfleet ships began firing phasers and photon torpedoes into the giant machinated square heap. "Literal chills."

    ---

    The U.S.S. Enterprise-E dropped warp and began their rotation of quantum torpedo launches.

    "The Valiant's losing life support," Riker reported from his chair console. "But they refuse to respond to anything?"

    Picard turned. "What is going on with those Defiant-class escorts? Bridge to Transporter Room 3, beam the Valiant survivors aboard."

    "They're refusing. Also, the Admiral's ship has been destroyed," Riker added. "Not Admiral Hayes. Admiral Mayes. He was Hayes' brother."

    The French officer with a British accent gritted his teeth. "What is the status of the backup cube?"

    "I am reading fluctuations in their power grid," Data reported from his control panel. "It is pulsating to the beat of the Bee Gees' Stayin' Alive."

    Picard nodded. "That's how you know. Number One, open a channel to the fleet." And then, "This is Captain Picard. I am taking command of the fleet. Target all your weapons onto the following coordinates."

    "Sir," Data checked. "The coordinates you have indicated are for the same non-vital-appearing system you indicated before. In fact, everyone was already firing at it."

    The Captain took a second look. "Oh. Then do these coordinates. I refuse to be command-usurped by past me!"

    ---

    The Phoenix-X initiated multi-vector attack mode and split into three with Gotens commanding the Beta section, and Armond, the Gamma section.

    "Keep firing on the spot that shiny-headed Human mentioned," Daniel ordered to the other vectors. "Let me know how those alt-Bridges are too. Are they better than this one?"

    Gotens replied over comms, as his vector rained fire on the Borg. "This one has that new car smell. And all the tags are still plastic-tied to every device."

    "Mine has a homeless Romulan living in it," Armond observed. "I think he has a knife? Should I wake him?"

    Daniel shook his head. "No. That's just Romy. He's cool."

    ---

    The Galaxy-class U.S.S. Xena swooped around and took aim at the Borg cube as ordered.

    "This relentless attack on the Federation from the Dominion, the Borg and so on is really getting on my nerves," Aeris gritted. "But we do have that third nacelle Picard described from his alternate future."

    Onegera perked from tactical as she kept fast-tapping the fire button. "It's not like it's doing anything, though. In fact, it takes 0.47 seconds longer to initiate the warp field."

    "All worth it for the double-takes," Aeris affirmed.

    ---

    The Phoenix-X reintegrated, mid-battle, to optimize repair, as Gotens and Armond returned to the Main Bridge. The viewscreen displayed the scatter of Starfleet ships swarming the cube.

    "These machine hybrids bring upon the kind of fear death would, only in an eternally-alive way," Gotens observed. "I say, bah!"

    Daniel nodded. "Agreed. We live with never-die mindsets all our lives, never thinking about the end, but here come the Borg to make that a reality in their own twisted way."

    "Still not sure what Riker was thinking when he said he wanted to live forever during his private conversation with Picard after the Enterprise-D crashed," Gotens contemplated. "It's treason of the highest order!"

    The Captain squinted in disagreement. "It was adorable and witty."

    "Sirs, the Borg have stopped firing!" Armond exclaimed milliseconds before the backup cube exploded, smattering a deluge of massive metal hulks and flaming plasma out from its insides.

    The Phoenix-X was rocked violently, throwing several crew from exploding consoles and to the floor with all the debris. Several other ships were caught in the wake and sent spinning in flames.

    "Oh no, BOB!" the Commander exclaimed. "Are you alright?"

    Daniel pulled himself up as several downed people were scattered throughout. "There's a BOB on our ship?"

    "Looks like our Ensign Rob and Lieutenant Wang are dead," BOB looked around trying to help.

    Gotens nodded as he went about. "Lieutenant Rock, too."

    "Yeah, but we have a BOB??" Daniel started. "It really is arbitrary who gets to defeat the annals of death. Never mind. I want medical in action and Engineering on systems. You know the usual. An Enterprise Combo #47."

    The Commander saluted before delving into work. "Order up!"

    ---

    The Xena stopped itself from spinning and the crew got up off the floor.

    "Ma'am, ships from all over are reporting systems down from the shockwave," Onegera reported from tactical. "Casualties as well."

    Aeris clenched her fist. "The Borg did it again, and they were only a backup of a backup. Can we confirm their second backups don't have tertiary backups?"

    "We can't even confirm if they're just as scary in the Delta Quadrant as they are in the Alpha Quadrant," Kuri explained. "Probably not, though. Like, probably wayyyy not."

    The Captain nodded. "Agreed. Well, as Starfleet has engineered additional medical facilities to our ship, defaulting us the 'healer' of all and every team-up, we must tend to the fleet!"

    "We've collected all our experience points, so we should be good to go," Tekari added.

    Aeris stood. "Engage healing powers, now!"

    ---

    With the Xena helping every ship get back on their feet with preparations to rendezvous at Deep Space 9, and the Borg debris burning away, the crew of the Phoenix-X found themselves at a loss for a cohesive story.

    "Well, that's a victory, eh?" Captain Daniel book-ended before taking notice of Ensign Dan. "You again? You're relieved!" Then he took a therapeutic breath. "Oh, that felt good."

    Gotens pondered. "Perhaps some inter-personal conflict, or classic Borg betrayals are on dock for next time?"

    "No, this was a light one," Daniel disputed. "We should appreciate the simplicity as an ease-in, for surely future outings will be an actual something, with thinking and depth and some kind of social justice message."

    The Commander hesitated. "Now that you mention it, this is preferable. No work, right?"

    "Right!" the Captain connected. "In fact, it's making me space-out a little. I think I need to sit down." He then looked to see that he was already sitting. "Way ahead of the game. You guys lucked out with your old Captain."

    Gotens interrupted. "Again, where do I sit?"

    "No, we're getting that worked out," Daniel answered, unconvincingly. "Yeah, the chair installers are on Alpha Centauri. Yeah. That's the ticket. Anyway, on to other stuff!"
     
    Last edited: Aug 4, 2021
  4. Hawku

    Hawku Captain Captain

    Joined:
    Nov 7, 2005
    Location:
    Ontario, Canada
    Author's notes: The original of this was done sometime in 1996, as an edited RP chat. This story is as nonsensical as it gets. This rewrite was done in April 2021.

    Episode 2A: Deep Space 9 becomes trapped in the wormhole, prompting the crews of the Phoenix-X and Xena to work together to get them out.

    Star Trek: Phoenix-X

    Deep Space Not So Much

    The Prometheus-class U.S.S. Phoenix-X dropped transwarp, entered the Denorios belt and approached Deep Space 9. Captain Daniel walked over to the helm where Commander Gotens had taken station.

    "Getting ready to dock," the Trill announced as he worked.

    Daniel stepped over. "Okay. Do what you have to do." But then pausing, switched to, "Actually, let me drive this time. You might hit the station."

    "I want to do it," Gotens countered.

    Daniel nudged him. "No. I will."

    "I really want to do it," Gotens held in-place.

    Shoving, Daniel added, "I said no and that's an order!"

    But Gotens and Daniel struggled against each other in competition, fighting to put their hands on the console when suddenly they accidentally fired a J3 torpedo into Deep Space 9.

    They stopped to witness the torpedo slowly move through space until it hit the station, causing a shockwave-explosion that knocked Deep Space 9 back and into the Bajoran wormhole. Everyone watched the screen and both Daniel and Gotens in complete and utter shock.

    "What the Krudge?" Daniel did a double-take. "Since when do we put the weapons control on the helm console?"

    Gotens shook his head in disappointment. "The Engineers have been crossing lines all week. My sonic shower called a Romulan bird-of-prey, yesterday."

    "Looks like the station was in a highly energized state, testing the nadion repellent shielding we attempted when we were attacked by the Dominion," BOB read from a console.

    Ensign Dan snapped his fingers in realization. "Of course! Didn't the torpedoes get ricocheted back? Our engineers' testing of the J3's must have enabled the same kind of thing."

    "The Bajoran wormhole is experiencing multi-fluxuial disturbances. It's expanding and retracting," BOB observed from a console.

    Armond looked at him. "Aren't you a Ferengi?"

    Daniel pinched his nose. "Okay, we knocked Deep Space 9 into the wormhole. Not our finest moment." The Captain thought for a moment. "Should we just get out of here? I mean, no one else knows what happened?"

    Suddenly, the three-nacelled Galaxy-class U.S.S. Xena approached to find no Cardassian space station.

    "Where's Deep Space 9??" Aeris exasperated.

    Daniel was taken aback. "It wasn't us. We weren't smacking the controls, accidentally knocking them into the wormhole or anything."

    "That sounds like you did do that," Aeris deadpanned.

    ---

    Meanwhile, the crew on Deep Space 9 gathered around the table in Ops.

    Dax checked the shared console. "It looks like we're still moving, but thrusters are damaged. It won't be long before we reach the end of the expanded wormhole."

    "And when we crash into it," Nog added, "It will be the end of Deep Space 9."

    Dun-dun-dunnn!

    "Did anyone else hear that classic musical sting?" O'Brien interjected to a mostly non-responsive station crew.

    ---

    "Captain's log. I've relieved Ensign Dan of duty for the sixth time this hour and I still see him on the Bridge. BOB is really starting to get on my nerves. It seems all my crew members are annoying. Meanwhile, Deep Space 9 has been headed for its doom. But Captain Aeris and I have come up with an idea to use, wait for it, tractor beams!"

    ---

    Later, the Phoenix-X and the Xena took flanking positions across the location of the wormhole.

    "Captain," Armond interrupted at the sound of an alert beeping. "Sensors are picking up a Jem'Hadar attack ship!"

    Daniel was taken aback. "Wow. So abrupt and intrusive of them. I'm impressed."

    "Ahhh, scratch that. It's just intact ship debris from a recent battle with Deep Space 9," Armond observed. "Man, they do all the best stuff. Can I transfer?"

    Gotens walked around. "No! Now, do the tractor beam thing and clean up the Messhall after!"

    Everyone watched as the Phoenix-X and Xena launched tractor beams into the wormhole as it opened. The beams suddenly warped into the hole, stretched and twisted until they reached the space station and snatched it to a halt.

    "Exactly as we predicted! The gravimetric strains of the fluxuating wormhole extended the range," Kugo established. "Like stretchy Changeling goo."

    Daniel shot her a deadpan look.

    "Right. Sorry."

    Both ships then dropped their tractor beams as the wormhole closed. Gotens dusted his hands off. "And that is that. We should be able to do it again in half an hour when the fluctuating wormhole opens on its own again."

    "I've got it!" Ensign Dan snapped. "If we use the Jem'Hadar ship for a third tractor beam, we might have enough power to bring them back!"

    Daniel waved him away. "Shush! I'm trying to think! Wait." And then, "If we use the Jem'Hadar ship for a third tractor beam, we might have enough power to bring them back."

    "Excellent idea, Captain," Gotens said with applause.

    Ensign Dan turned. "But I was the one who—"

    "You're relieved!" snapped Daniel.

    Everyone then looked up as a hail from the U.S.S. Xena was patched through. "All that we could do is stop it. Let's work out the next phase of our plan. Aeris out."

    "There is no way I'm going over to that ship," Daniel countered after the screen clicked off. "And what kind of name is Xena? Sounds like an out-franchise warrior duchess."

    ---

    Deep within the confines of the energized wormhole, a probe was detected near Deep Space 9. Jadzia Dax worked the console to read it.

    "Looks like it has a Cardassian signature," she noted.

    Garak stepped forward. "Ah, yes! I recognize it. It is used in some of the outer colonies to adjust a planet's gravitational pull. This one appears to be malfunctioning."

    "Or malfunctioning on purpose," Sisko surmised.

    Nog added in haste, "We should destroy it! It's clearly the thing causing the wormhole's expanding and detracting."

    "If we destroy it, the wormhole won't expand enough for us to escape. Worf, do you think we can control it?" Sisko turned.

    The Klingon nodded. "I believe so. But this goes against all my aggressive Klingon tendencies."

    ---

    Meanwhile, an armed Away Team from the Phoenix-X beamed over to the Jem'Hadar attack ship.

    "Wow. Can't believe we're at war with these people," Gotens observed.

    Kugo shrugged. "I mean, war is pretty common everywhere. It's a by-product of conflicting philosophies, ego and struggles for power."

    "Still. They should've asked us if we wanted to. Much like asking a date out to Prom," he stood. "It's just good manners."

    ---

    Daniel took a seat on the Bridge of the Phoenix-X.

    "Commander. How are things?" he queried with a hint of urgency.

    Gotens replied over comms. "Oh, very nice. Kugo and I were just having a delightful conversation about doctrines and government. And the greater question of: Why?"

    "I mean, about the tractor beam! You're not the one who's going to operate it, are you?"

    A shrug was heard over the air. "Of course."

    "Oh, God. This is my riskiest mission yet. Okay. Everyone, wait to engage on my mark," Captain Daniel ordered with a long pause for dramatic effect. As soon as the wormhole blew open, he launched a directing finger. "Mark!"

    As all three ships birthed their tractor beams, BOB tapped at a nearby console. "The station is coming out!"

    "Again. You're not even in Starfleet," Armond argued.

    Captain Aeris called over the comms, next. "It's working! I knew we could solve a Deep Space 9 problem as well as they could. Maybe even better?"

    ---

    The entire space station Deep Space 9 shook like crazy as it emerged from the altered Bajoran wormhole.

    "The reprogrammed probe is holding!" Worf announced as he tapped his controls.

    O'Brien furrowed his brow at his own readings. "The station on the other hand will need to cash in its insurance premiums."

    "Are we out?" Sisko clenched.

    Kira looked up in excitement. "We're out!"

    "Good. I had, like, twenty Prophet calls while we were in there," the Captain admitted. "Five of them were complaints about the Ferengi."

    ---

    Meanwhile, as the crew on Phoenix-X celebrated their latest acquisition, Daniel held up the probe.

    "Huzzah! Our first acquired technology!" the Captain exclaimed.

    Gotens interjected over comms from the Jem'Hadar ship. "Did we just do Deep Space 9 dirty? After knocking them in, we now steal their alien-of-the-week probe, for what, competitive science? Aren't they the most beloved crew this side of the wormhole?"

    "They know it's out of love, and that, according to Admiral Cloud, Starfleet facilities trump Cardassian vole mills any day," Daniel established. "Sure, double-wronging them gave me a pause of 0.68 seconds, but I now realize, for an authoritarian Changeling, that is an eternity."

    Armond surmised, "You know, if we hadn't knocked that iconic stationary non-space mover into their rating gimmick, we would have never discovered that threat about to destroy the wormhole."

    Gotens queried. "So, we're heroes?"

    "We're heroes," Daniel confirmed. "Okay, you can release the tractor beam."

    The Commander replied, "Yes, Captain," before fighting with Kugo over the controls and unintentionally whisking and reversing the tractor beam from Deep Space 9 over to the Phoenix-X.

    "Aaaahhh!"

    Everyone shrieked as the Phoenix-X was then knocked spinning in all axes into the wormhole, glinting light as it disappeared into Prophet-oblivion.
     
    Last edited: Aug 4, 2021
  5. Hawku

    Hawku Captain Captain

    Joined:
    Nov 7, 2005
    Location:
    Ontario, Canada
    Author's notes: The original of this was done sometime in 1996, as an edited RP chat. This rewrite was done in June 2021.

    Episode 2B: The Phoenix-X is tasked to find Voyager and is shocked when they find them first.

    Star Trek: Phoenix-X
    Find Voyager? No Problem

    The Prometheus-class U.S.S. Phoenix-X sat flatly out in the directionless, apathetic void of non-oriented space. Captain Daniel stepped out of his Ready Room to a wide-eyed, awaiting crew of Starfleet misfits.

    "Okay, good," he began. "We have just received a new mission that I am willing to share with you all, provided that you have all completed your chores for today."

    Armond raised a hand. "Sir, why are we taking the trash out to the end of the airlock? The garbage company refuses to rendezvous with us every week for pick up?"

    "You know how important the conventions of repetitive tasks are to a ship steeped in operational procedures," Daniel countered, sternly. "Anyway, the mission is to retrieve the Intrepid-class U.S.S. Voyager from the Delta Quadrant."

    Gotens pondered for a moment. "Hmm. They couldn't do it, so Starfleet is sending us to take care of it."

    "Exactly," the Captain confirmed. "It's clear who is the more powerful over-powered, or OP, ship is in this case. Ever since we got word of them being alive, the Phoenix-X has been tasked to go and get them."

    BOB walked over. "So, ever since launch? What took us so long?"

    "Unfortunately, the task list dropdown tab is buggy, and impossible to click," Gotens conceded as he tried again and again on a nearby control panel. "Ugh! I hate computers."

    Ensign Dan celebrated with the best of intentions. "Yeah! Another mission!"

    "No outbursts of joy, allowed," countered the Captain. "Ensign, you are relieved."

    Gotens walked over. "Find Voyager? Surely, they must've had many opportunities to return considering the high rate of space anomalies out there. Source: Every incarnation of the U.S.S. Enterprise, every week."

    "It's a fair assumption, but it's also likely said hypothesized events were impeded due to Delta Quadrant incompetence," Daniel surmised. "It's a well-known quadrant-wide effect."

    "So, how do we start?" Gotens continued. "Should I assemble the senior staff in the Briefing room for classic meeting-style preparations? I love how everyone is always so calm."

    Armond interjected. "That room's being fumigated for voles. Turns out Deep Space 9 was not happy we knocked them into the wormhole last week."

    "I like that we have a rivalry with them now," Daniel observed. "Makes things interesting. But, speaking of legacy properties, we should analyze Voyager's situation. How'd they get lost there in the first place? What other stories do they have to tell?"

    Gotens contemplated. "Something about a giant, slow-breathing blob that was horny? I don't know. It was such an old episodic mission report that they sent."

    "We could head for the Delta Quadrant, but, as it's known for its Borg infestations, I doubt we'd land anywhere and NOT encounter them," Daniel explained.

    Armond held up an unfolded, terribly worn sheet of large paper. "Well, Starfleet did provide us with maps. Not sure why they all printed like this."

    "Yes! We use the maps and go transwarp speed to get to Voyager!" Captain Daniel clenched his fist.

    BOB raised a finger. "Except that staying at transwarp for a prolonged period of time would overheat the engines? That's how all the previous Phoenix-letter'd ships exploded within two years."

    "Also, wouldn't saving Voyager completely mess up their predicted seven-year long story arc?" Gotens added. "Presuming they want to follow the Enterprise-D's example of broken-mirror superstition-length trackable drama."

    Daniel shot a finger gun. "Good point. I mean, said Intrepid-class vessel could still churn out great-to-just-below-mediocre stories to be added to ship logs that we would all later consume on a weekly basis, or as a binge-watch."

    "Wait! I could prep transwarp, but in short bursts, like Wesley hopping holographic stones over a stream to see Riker and Data!" Kugo suggested.

    The Captain turned to her. "What have I told you about contrived problem solving?? Original thinking has been done-to-death!"

    "I guess now we have to save them," Gotens suggested, crossing his own arms in similar protest to saving Voyager.

    But BOB spoke up. "You can't just put us at risk like this? What about all the other Phoenix-ships?? We're on X now!"

    "Ferengi don't have moral outrage! You guys just negotiate, deal and make bets all the time," Daniel re-established.

    "Wow. Totally specist," BOB deadpanned. "I'll bet you that I can go the next 24 hours without earning a single slip of latinum, and if I win, we don't go."

    Daniel snapped. "SOLD. I mean, you're on."

    ---

    Later, Captain Daniel found himself in the Messhall, sitting at one of the drab, grey tables as various crew went about on their time off. He was then approached by an officer on the wait staff.

    "Can I have a cup over here, please?" the Captain requested.

    Billy tilted. "Would you like a drink to go with that?"

    "No. Just a cup," Daniel confirmed.

    Moments later, Billy returned with the cup to which Daniel liquified himself into to relax. Later, the officer returned to pick up the cup and wash it in the sink. Daniel soon found himself in the ship's plumbing system.

    ---

    In Ensign Dan's living quarters, after being relieved of duty, the Ensign began washing his hands in the bathroom sink as a literal cleansing of his follies. There, Captain Daniel poured out of the faucet, fed himself to the floor and then reformed.

    "Ugh! I hate when that happens," Daniel commented, dusting off his uniform. He then took notice of the Ensign. "Thanks, anyway. I want you on duty immediately."

    Ensign Dan was too dumbfounded to articulate more than his confusion. "Captain?"

    "Are you questioning me?" Daniel cut. "You're relieved!"

    ---

    Later, entering the Bridge, Daniel found Commander Gotens at command.

    "What's our status, Number One?" he asked. "Actually, let's take that back. I'm not sure you're at that level yet."

    The Commander squinted. "But I passed the complimentary course at the Academy? I scored second highest in the chair-straddling Riker maneuver?"

    "That's right. Second," countered Daniel. "Let me know when you can leg-lift your weight in gold pressed latinum."

    BOB then dropped several slips of latinum at the sound of what he thought was being called out when Ensign Dan was handing them over. "Ah!" Then, admitting his failure, BOB explained, "We found a buyer for the Phoenix-X's plumbing, despite that being a thing Starfleet ships don't normally have."

    "Hah! I beat you, Ferengi! That whole inter-ship tube thing was a ruse to draw you out to teach you to never not-risk the Phoenix-X on crazy speed jumps. Also, I like having systems that harken back to Ancient Rome," Daniel explained. "Now, let's keep riding this high and start our transwarp hopping, in much the same way the crew of Deep Space 9 played hopscotch on a regular basis."

    BOB pointed to the screen. "What the? Is that a Federation ship?" And then, "It's Voyager!"

    "Are you Morn-gesting the latinum to hide it from me now?" Daniel turned to the Ferengi.

    Armond shook his head from tactical. "No. He's right. The signature checks out. It's the one with the Talaxian furfly emojis."

    "It can't be?" Daniel blinked. "They found us?"

    Everyone turned to the viewscreen to see the Intrepid-class U.S.S. Voyager returning home to them, early, having fashioned some kind of half-baked hippie-wormhole thing or something.

    "You can't be the Guardian, forever!" exclaimed Q in mid-argument, as he suddenly flashed in onto the Bridge of the Phoenix-X, unexpectedly. "What? Where am I? Is this that space-time preset I put in place to correct continuity errors?"

    Gotens was then taken aback by the omnipotent being's sudden appearance. "What in the world??"

    "You dare aim confusion in my direction? You know how high my IQ is, right? Higher than explaining things!"

    Daniel interjected. "Q!" He then smirked. "I've always wanted to yell that."

    "Oh, fine. If you must know, I sometimes manage the Federation's inter-spatial tapestry for the Continuum's personal benefit. But, I assure you, it's completely based on our own future interests with the Borg at the detriment of your own."

    The Captain opened his arms. "That doesn't make it any better! This is an unprecedented event."

    "You trek, they trek, we all trek. Whether you do a thing or a thing happens to you doesn't really matter because continuity takes precedence over greatness."

    Daniel looked away in reflection. "If that's true, perhaps we're not unlike that Janeway-infused ship from the galactic revulsion, after all."

    "Not to worry. The only difference will be that they'll still be over there," Q lamented as he raised his fingers in preparation for an epic snap. "I'll be knocking your 'friends' back to where they came from!"

    After he air-quoted 'friends', he snapped his fingers and knocked Voyager barreling back into the annals of the Delta Quadrant.

    "Just to reiterate: Any attempts at saving them will result in the same actions by me, or some similarly named protégé," Q confirmed. "We have a very strict naming convention policy. Now, who's up for Robin Hood role play? If I force it, it's more hilarious."

    Daniel breathed. "Fine. But at least tell me we've pre-emptively ceased another potential crew-to-crew discord, by not interacting with them before they were sent away?"

    "Doubtful," Gotens added. "They have no explanation to what just happened. Only that they saw us one moment and were sent back the next."

    ---

    Meanwhile, Voyager found themselves back in the quadrant of hell, with an outraged Captain Janeway.

    "I'm going to get that Phoenix-X when we get back," she gritted. "If it's the last thing I do!"

    Tom Paris interrupted from his station. "Captain, the Borg are approaching. Also, Species 8472."

    "Uggh!" she frustrated as several more Delta Quadrant-specific enemies dropped warp around Voyager, all with vengeful and hostile appetites.
     
    Last edited: Jan 14, 2022
    Robert Bruce Scott likes this.
  6. Robert Bruce Scott

    Robert Bruce Scott Captain Captain

    Joined:
    Jun 18, 2021
    You've gone totally Beard and Kenney on us. But instead of Bored of the Rings, you've given us Star Trudge...

    This is an absolute scream! But when do they get to reverse the polarity? Or was that in an alternate timeline in the mirror universe?

    Crack on, man! Thanks!! rbs
     
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  7. Robert Bruce Scott

    Robert Bruce Scott Captain Captain

    Joined:
    Jun 18, 2021
  8. Hawku

    Hawku Captain Captain

    Joined:
    Nov 7, 2005
    Location:
    Ontario, Canada
    Haha, thanks for the read! I will throw one of those into the next one for you.
     
    Robert Bruce Scott likes this.
  9. Hawku

    Hawku Captain Captain

    Joined:
    Nov 7, 2005
    Location:
    Ontario, Canada
    Author's notes: The original of this was done sometime in 1996, as an edited RP chat. This rewrite was done in July 2021.

    Episode 3A: A spy is reported on the ship and the Phoenix-X is tasked to intercept an illegal trade.

    Star Trek: Phoenix-X
    Flortarios III

    The Prometheus-class U.S.S. Phoenix-X barreled through the sickly, vacuous emptiness of ice, hard space. Daniel sat patiently behind the desk of his Ready Room that was connected to the Bridge.

    "Captain," came the comm-call over the air from Ensign Dan. "Receiving a communication from Starfleet Command."

    Daniel rolled his eyes. "Ugh. That one trick pony organization again? It's always something with them."

    "Are you berating us? You know that's illegal!" interrupted Admiral Cloud from the desktop viewscreen. "Anyway, I'm just here at Earth for a conference about starbases. Odd that we would even need one of those, but you know Starfleet. We love our conferences."

    The Captain nodded, translating meaning. "Starfleet are imbeciles, sir!"

    "At ease, Captain," Cloud calmed. "I just wanted to open a deeper conversation about what's to come with one important question: Have you ever heard of Flortarios III?"

    Just then, the sudden musical sting 'dun, dun, dun!' flanked them from all around.

    "That's just a thing I had programmed into any starships under my command. It's random and frequent, so I hope you like it."

    ---

    Meanwhile, Commander Gotens and the Ferengi BOB found themselves in the Messhall, having lunch at one of the standard issue tables. BOB's sights were set upon another Starfleet officer taking a seat on another table at the other end of the dining area.

    "See that Humaaan, over there?" BOB began. "That's Damon Smith, a scientist the U.S.S. Xena picked up from Flortarios III to help study the anomaly."

    Gotens tried to stick a fork in his Andorian krill-beast steak. "First of all, I approve all crew transfers, so not knowing this means I was sleep-Commanding again. Second, how do you know so much about everything? That's clearly a Quark rip-off attribute."

    "True, but my methods of information gathering are based on surveys I spam everyone with," BOB confirmed. "Survey?"

    The Commander took a PADD from BOB. "Oh! I love doing these."

    "Daniel to Gotens and BOB," came the call over air. "The security cameras have you sitting with each other. Can you please report to my Ready Room?"

    Gotens tapped his commbadge. "Yes, Captain. But can we remove those things from our living quarters?"

    "You know our camera coverage needs to rival that of the Enterprise-refit! Now get here, fast, and ensure you keep your best angles!"

    ---

    Later, upon the Bridge of the Phoenix-X, Doctor Damon Smith, a human in a Starfleet uniform, tapped furiously at a console in the back, reading data from a nearby white spatial anomaly. The rest of the crew were present.

    "Well, this splurge of white, flowing cosmic energy isn't as interesting as I thought," he deadpanned. "Literally, there are 1936 Ford trucks adrift that are worth more of our attention."

    Daniel turned his command chair in his direction. "A lot of them come from Sigma Iotia II which launches them into space as a form of Mafia-style payment to us."

    "Anyway. You know these anomalies. Always anomalying," Damon catch-phrased.

    BOB tilted his head. "That doesn't sound very scientific, or catch-phrasey? But, then again, what would myself, a Ferengi with an all-caps name, know?"

    "Exactly! Also," Ensign Dan turned from his console. "Receiving a communication from Starfleet Command!"

    Daniel awoke, suddenly, from his 60 second slumber. "YOU'RE RELIEVED!" Then snapping back to reality, "Damn. I was having that dream where I was surrounded by Ensigns again. I mean, on screen."

    "Captain," came the hail from Admiral Cloud. "In addition to my earlier contact, I must report that recent Intel indicates you have a spy onboard coordinating a trade with the Dominion."

    Daniel sat up. "Oh, snap! That's like a Garak, but for the enemy for real this time."

    "Agreed," Cloud added. "We have identified the spy. He is the Ferengi to your right."

    The Captain stood. "I knew it! Security, escort BOB to the Brig!"

    "Wait. What? The only illegal thing I've done so far is ship tube grubs in discarded uniform versions," BOB said as he was dragged away on heals by security officers Elly and Jergen. "You change uniforms way too much!"

    Cloud nodded as he watched the turbolift doors close in on the nuisance. "He's not wrong. Anyway, your new mission is to go to Flortarios III, the capital trade planet I mentioned, and intercept that Dominion trade. They say it's tulaberry wine, but our sources confirmed it to be stolen Starfleet weapons. The two have near-identical registration codes, so they're easy to mix up."

    "Of course," Daniel realized. "BOB must be a code name! The all-caps should've been my first clue."

    The Admiral continued. "Appears obvious now. There is also a chip that specific Dominion trade crew has. I want you to get it. You'll recognize it by its early-stage-Ibudan-clone-blob cover icon. Turns out they really like to immortalize clones as chip logos."

    "On it," Captain Daniel confirmed. "And is Flortarios just a mash-up of Florida and Ontario? Were the colonizers an American and a Canadian? Seems they could've done better?"

    ---

    In no time, the Phoenix-X found itself in orbit of Flortarios III, with the pretense of trading surplus Tranwarp coils for real krill beast steaks.

    "Alright, I'll beam down first and signal for you guys," Captain Daniel planned.

    Gotens nodded. "Okay, but can we get actual steaks after this? I mean, I know it's a cover, but it can also be legit. We don't have to fake stuff all the time just to be cool."

    "Captain! I'm detecting an unauthorized transport off the Phoenix-X," reported Lieutenant Armond over comms. "They tried to mask it with layers of Harry Kim's clarinet practices, but I listen to nails on chalkboard in my spare time!"

    Daniel pondered. "Hmm. Cross-check the crew's daily 'here' list-on-lined-loose-leaf-papers. In the meantime, I'll continue on with the expectation that the mysteries intersect. They always intersect."

    ---

    Later, in a dark cargo bay within a maintenance building upon Flortarios III's largest cities, Jem'Hadar Third Tunn'Kort entered to find his First and Second talking to each other.

    "Did our spy contact you?" First Ruk'Tenon queried the Second.

    Second Cag'Vit nodded. "He has escaped the Phoenix-X and reports they will soon intercept us. You remember what he looks like, right?"

    "I recall that he is extremely ugly, like borderline Tellarite-Pakled-hybrid ugly," Ruk'Tenon shuddered before noticing Tunn'Kort. "Ah, Third! You know ugliness, right? You were trying to create that Jem'Hadar female that one time."

    Third Tunn'Kort shook his head in what appeared as horrid-reminiscence. "That was a terrible cloning mistake. She kept asking for equal rights? Like, what even is that? If I knew, I probably would have given it to her. But I didn't even know what she was talking about?"

    "It's okay, Third," Ruk'Tenon calmed. "She's making cars on Sigma Iotia II now. In the meantime, I want you and your team to secure the area and prepare to capture the Phoenix-X crew and the Ferengi traders."

    Tunn'Kort nodded. "Yes, First. But is it true Starfleet females are employed on their own freewill? Like, what even is freewill?"

    "Stop it, Third, before you activate your greater-thinking alert chip and implode your brain!"

    ---

    Later that night, two Ferengi with plasma pistols stood near-aimlessly at the doors of a large transport hangar, after-hours. They were then approached by BOB in flashy spy clothing.

    "I am your contact from the Phoenix-X, here to lead the trade," BOB announced.

    Wenk did a double-take. "The spy was another Ferengi? Perhaps it makes sense. I just hadn't realized how redundant we were being."

    "If you're really one of us," Kehmeh started, "Then what starship viewscreen trait did the Grand Nagus implement on all vessels in the early 2360s?"

    BOB shrugged. "That all hails should be on a white backdrop and extremely close-up to advertise Ferengi skin-pore technology?"

    "He's one of us, alright," Wenk said, glancing at his partner before allowing BOB inside. "Ah, that feels good," he added as he felt his own cheek bones.

    ---

    On a nearby street, Third Tunn'Kort and his team secluded themselves around corners and rooftops, as they watched a hover transport with a large crate stop in an alleyway to unload five Ferengi black-market traders and BOB.

    "They'll be here," assured Kehmeh. "We stole these weapons from Starbase 55. They just left their cargo bay doors open, thinking they were in a trusting neighborhood. Hah! Learn to lock your doors, Federation."

    BOB turned from his Ferengi cohort to see five Jem'Hadar approaching. When their eyes met, he asked, "Do you have the chip?"

    "Yes," replied First Ruk'Tenon, as he held up a small computer unit and turned to his subordinate. "Second, check the crate, and don't doddle like many Jem'Hadar are known for!"

    But, while Second Cag'Vit was confirming their bounty, Gotens and six Away Team members stepped from out the shadows with phaser rifles aimed. "Drop your weapons or prepare for unbelievable pain! Yeah! Woo!" Then, after a beat, "Though, you will get a moment to weigh the pros and cons, because Starfleet is fair, and who likes choosing things so immediately? Suuucccch an annoying sales tactic."

    "Now it's eleven against seven," Wenk interjected, aiming at the Commander. "Also, that choosy sales thing got me through some tough financial targets. It's rude, but it fed my family."

    BOB then turned to aim his pistol at Kehmeh. "Ten against eight! I once sold a boat-load of kemocite that way but ended up losing all my money to a no-time-to-think Japanese game show."

    "Traitor!" Wenk declared in over-the-top realization of BOB's defiance. "And we just met too! You said you were going to my game show taping!"

    Ruk'Tenon sized BOB up in confusion. "Betrayal does not necessarily negate the attendance of game show tapings. They can be separate. As separate as one who was supposed to meet the spy from the Phoenix-X. Not just crew?"

    "Here I am," came the voice of Damon Smith as he stepped from out of another section of shadows. "Luckily, I reserved that vacant shadowy-spot, as it seems they were filling up fast around here."

    Cag'Vit recoiled at the sight of the human. "Ugh! The face! Just like we said!"

    "Wow. So, Damon was the spy all along? And BOB was the red herring? Totally didn't see that coming," Gotens observed, completely ensconced in the reveal.

    BOB shrugged. "Did you have fun, though? That's the important thing."

    "Stop talking about me when I'm in earshot!" argued Damon. "Yeah, I could hear you in the Messhall every time, and I don't have a sister you can ask out!" He then pulled up his own hand phaser on them. "We are going through with this transfer, all gentlemen-like, you hear? You see, Flortarios III is known for all kinds of trades, including cover-of-night commerce. By the partaking of this deal, I've begun this planet's right-of-passage."

    Gotens touched his chin in deep thought. "So, the lesson here is 'doing stuff'? I like it. Simple. Easy to convey."

    "How about we convey the dropping of their weapons?" Third Tunn'Kort suggested, stepping out of the shadows and aiming a polaron rifle at a surprised Damon, his Ferengi contingent and the other Jem'Hadar.

    Tunn'Kort's body then liquefied and transformed into Captain Daniel, to First Ruk'Tenon's surprise: "A Founder!"

    "Shoot everyone except the god!" ordered Second Cag'Vit as he fired a polaron bolt for Gotens, prompting Gotens to duck and phaser him back.

    The other Jem'Hadar and Gotens' Away Team opened a chaotic firestorm of energy weapon madness upon each other as the excess Ferengi troop fed themselves back into the hover transport. "Could we have shot the god?" Wenk asked his partner in genuine curiosity of the rules.

    "Probably! This planet is weird. They had slaves trading other slaves without the self-aware irony," Kehmeh corroborated as he made the transport hover its way toward the alley exit, but not before Gotens increased his rifle setting and phasered the back of the vehicle into an explosion!

    ---

    Back on the Phoenix-X, the crew detected the situation on the ground with the utmost consternation. The Klingon Exchange Officer, named Red, turned from an alert on his console.

    "I'm detecting a fulmination at the site," he reported.

    Armond sat up in the center chair. "The boomy-boom, boom kind?" Then he tapped his commbadge. "Bridge to Transporter Room 3. Beam up the Away Team. In their complete bodies this time."

    ---

    On the night-time surface, the energy from the hover explosion was found to interfere with the transport and every Phoenix-X crewmember was beamed out except Gotens, Daniel and BOB who were then surrounded by polaron rifle-aiming Jem'Hadar.

    "Woooo, I am your God," Daniel broke, wiggling his fingers like a magician, after an awkward pause. "You mussstt obeyyyy!"

    ---

    A flip-screen-transition later and the three found themselves in a makeshift force-field-bound holding cell on the cargo bay floor of the after-hours maintenance building. The remaining two Ferengi dealers stood next to the three.

    "Honestly, I'm kind of impressed at them," Daniel observed of the Jem'Hadar.

    Wenk consolation-prized, "Well, at least we're alive."

    "That's not one of the Rules of Acquisition!" Kehmeh snapped. "And don't 'at-least' the situation. It cheapens the whole thing."

    BOB turned to his Federation comrades. "So, did Damon Smith orchestrate this entire thing for trade culture?"

    "Sounds like it," Daniel observed. "Exposing him to confirm our Starfleet ability to weed out and recognize spies seems to have unwittingly elevated his status."

    Gotens blinked. "The who was the what now?"

    "The what is that you guys messed up this illegal commerce!" Kehmeh continued. "The Flortarians have an habitual moral pass for all types of exchange, and actually encourages unscrupulous transaction."

    Daniel facepalmed. "There is so much wrong with that premise that instead of correcting you, I just want to stab you with a giant ear swab."

    He then turned to Jem'Hadar Second Cag'Vit, who was standing guard on the other side of the forcefield.

    "The large-eared, bumpy-topped, whine-fest is correct," the Second confirmed. "We are to hand you over to the locals for some kind of reconditioning, or death in response to your sacrilege. Despite that, they maintain they are great at parties."

    Daniel's eyes went wide. "And you're complying for what, moral obligation? Let us out now, or I'll boost your cognitive dissonance with species-based status proclamations and assertive tones!"

    Cag'Vit quickly stood at attention. "Jem'Hadar are imbeciles, sir!"

    "Fascinating," Gotens observed as Cag'Vit dropped the forcefield. "Oh, not the compliance. The way those Flortarians are running toward us."

    Daniel then turned himself into 21st century action star Jackie Chan and multi-punched, dodged and kicked down each attacking opponent until he snatched a Flortarios PADD out of mid-drop.

    "He was so delightful. Anyway, what is up with these people being the opposite of that?" the Captain questioned, reverting to normal as he read a thumbs up icon next to a burglar icon.

    Gotens accessed a nearby console, before getting to work on it. "What's up is the erecting of a dampening field to block transporters from the Phoenix-X. My ex-wife did the same thing."

    The Captain's attention shifted from Gotens to the large, steel entry being unlocked from the outside. "It's their building and they're willing to engage us in it over a classic deal-gone-south trope? Seems excessive?" Daniel picked up a Federation phaser rifle off a nearby table and fired a sealing beam into the large, closed split.

    "Wife did that too," the Commander added before loud banging from the Flortarians was belted onto the outside of the cargo entrance.

    Daniel indicated to the Ferengi to pick up rifles as well. BOB complied whilst taking notice of the situation. "Perhaps they really do relinquish ethical quandary," BOB began. "Enough so, those doors will not hold off much longer, per traded barricade quality versus store-bought. Oh, and the Commander is having trouble."

    "Reverse the polarity. Reverse the polarity!" Daniel ordered.

    Gotens shook his head as he worked. "That's not just a thing Starfleet officers can do to resolve any situa—" But, after actually doing it mid-sentence, the dampening field was dropped, crescendoed with an overwhelming crowd of chaotic Flortarians bursting through the doors and opening fire. "Huh! Well, that was a silly assumption of mine."

    "Daniel to Phoenix-X. Beam us up. Now!" the Captain tapped his commbadge before the group was dematerialized.

    ---

    Meanwhile, Damon Smith was escorted to the Brig by Lieutenant Elly, and then shoved into a holding cell.

    "Get in there!" she ordered, sternly.

    Damon was thrown to the floor. "Owe! Well, it was all worth it to engage in a thorough trade-run on this planet. Now I am an elite to them."

    "But you failed? For that to be true, the collapse of a transaction would have to be just as respected?" she questioned.

    The other man clasped his hands. "Hell, yeah it is! I've come to learn it's an unspoken right-of-passage! A broken-down illegal exchange is bragging rights here. Finally, I'm a somebody!" Then he wondered, "By the way, in terms of lawyers, do you guys have Holographic Matlock?"

    ---

    Daniel entered the Bridge to find Tactical officer Armond flirting with Chief Engineer Kugo.

    "Stop that! You know your departments are not allowed to mix!" the Captain snapped. He then turned BOB and Gotens. "As for a more relevant two, congratulations, gentlemen, on a job well done."

    BOB shrugged. "So, the Flortarians have trade obsession as a hyper-form of cultural diffusion, brought about by an obsession with old-world commerce?"

    "Pretty obviously that, if you ask me. Also, got this," Daniel mentioned while holding up the microprocessor. "It's a Soong-type emotion chip for Androids. Ever since Data started using one, they've been readily available on the market and are worth a lot."

    Gotens watched as it was tossed into a basket of other mission-acquired emotion chips. "We still don't know why we have a Changeling Starfleet Captain and an all-caps civilian Ferengi doing away missions?"

    "Welp! That's all the time we have for today," Daniel clasped his hands, dismissing whatever the other guy said. "I say we just leave the mess on the planet for the Enterprise-E to fix." Then, pointing to the view screen, he declared, "Helm. Take us out of here, with attitude!"

    Red took a seat at the helm, excitedly, "Yes, sir!" and jumped the ship into warp.
     
    Last edited: Jan 14, 2022
  10. Robert Bruce Scott

    Robert Bruce Scott Captain Captain

    Joined:
    Jun 18, 2021
    Love having the characters notice the musical sting... Tube grubs in discarded uniform designs...
    But the best is the mysterious plot lines intersecting...

    Man - your stuff should be required reading for fanfic writers in much the same way that Peter Jackson made Monty Python's Search for the Holy Grail required watching for his production crew.

    And thanks for the reversed polarity!! rbs
     
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  11. Hawku

    Hawku Captain Captain

    Joined:
    Nov 7, 2005
    Location:
    Ontario, Canada
    Didn't know he did that. That's awesome. Yeah, it's true. We all weave the plot lines. We all do it. It can't be a secret anymore. lol -- Appreciate the read!
     
  12. Robert Bruce Scott

    Robert Bruce Scott Captain Captain

    Joined:
    Jun 18, 2021
    I'm the nerd who watched the commentaries. He said it was on everyone's mind - because it would be too easy to turn LoTR into a farce. So they were constantly thinking "how do we keep this from becoming Python..."
     
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  13. Hawku

    Hawku Captain Captain

    Joined:
    Nov 7, 2005
    Location:
    Ontario, Canada
    Author's notes: The original of this was done sometime in 1996, as an edited RP chat. This rewrite was done in October 2021.

    Episode 3B: Gul Meloneus abducts Captain Daniel, and Ensign Dan tries not to get relieved by finding out what happened.

    Star Trek: Phoenix-X
    Missed the Mishap

    The Prometheus-class U.S.S. Phoenix-X pierced through warp at incredible spacefaring, interstellary-traversing speeds! By contrast, Ensign Dan sluggishly got out of bed and began fixing himself up in the ensuite.

    "This is it. The day I don't get relieved from duty," he told himself when he was done. After a few quick sips of coffee, he was out the door.

    As he continued down the corridor, he was joined by Ensign Billy. "Welp, assuming I know what you're all about, I just say that if you want to avoid getting relieved, you should always know what's going on."

    "Yeah," Ensign Dan realized. "Thanks for that unwarranted, presumptuous advice."

    ---

    As soon as he entered the Bridge, he found the ship had gone to Red Alert, and had engaged in a firefight with the Cardassians.

    "Sir! Detecting the Hideki-class frigate Tarak!" the Klingon Exchange Officer Red exasperated from his helm position.

    Commander Gotens stood from the command chair. "HAIL THEM! ON SCREEN!!!!" After the viewer clicked on, he calmed himself. "Meloneus. So, we meet again."

    "Your voice sounds hoarse. Shouting commands to emphasize the seriousness of a situation? Pretty hack, if you ask me," the Cardassian Gul suggested.

    Ensign Dan shrugged, completely lost as to what happened. "Well, at least we're all friends here?"

    "We are not! And don't expect an explanation for what has happened just because you were late to work!!" Meloneus countered. "Now, where is Glinn Agenos?"

    Gotens eyed him. "He's here. But you first."

    "I was hoping you'd ask," Meloneus conceded as he indicated an aide to shove a despondent and bleary-eyed, uniform-flaked Captain Daniel into viewscreen frame. "You see his state is what I have heard many humans call: a ramshackle. In fact, he's been flaking all over the floors, and my Cardassian broom guy does not look pleased at all."

    Armond clenched his fist. "Dammit, Meloneus! You're using an Obsidian Order device to prevent him from changing shape!"

    "They're available at every corner starbase now," he admitted.

    To that, Daniel attempted to speak through his agonizing torture. "Uugh. It's a tra— Ugh. Trap."

    "Oh, he said 'frap'," Meloneus explained. "He's been enjoying our Cardassian Sunrise Frappes. Delicious, actually. If you'd like, I could send you the molecular structure. That's not even a Cardassian misdirect. I'm genuinely interested in sharing this."

    "At the risk of being relieved of duty, am I ever going to know how this situation arose?" Ensign Dan interjected.

    Gotens snapped at all the diverting conversation. "Ensigns aren't privy to knowing things! The very idea is ludicrously absurd? I want you to go to Sickbay to check yourself for possible viruses." He then turned to the viewscreen. "As for us, we trade now, before this digresses into further, randomized flippancy and other types of waggishness."

    "Well, I was having a great time," Meloneus countered.

    The Commander tapped his commbadge. "Wallace, bring the prisoner to Transporter Room 3 and wait for me there. And none of your typical lollygagging!"

    ---

    Entering Transporter Room 3, Gotens found Operations officer Kayl behind the controls and Wallace on deck, holding a protective phaser to a transporter pad-positioned, hand-cuffed Glinn Agenos.

    "Now, in order for this trade to be conducted right, we will have to drop and re-up this section of shields in near-instant perfection," Gotens offered before tapping his commbadge. "Red, are you ready?"

    Red replied over air, "All I do is sit here for 8 hours a day. Other than continued butt-tingles, there is not much preventing me from doing my job."

    "I get knee injuries from standing all day," he related. "You can't even brag about that as a courting gesture. Working on a starship is dangerous in the most mundane ways. Anyway, everyone, lower shields and energize!"

    At that, both Agenos and Gotens were dematerialized out much to the crew's chagrin. Red's concerned voice transmitted, "That wasn't supposed to happen! It was supposed to be a clean trade!"

    "Dude, emphasizing a current event as its progressing doesn't make it any more dramatic," Kayl deadpanned.

    ---

    Later, with the Tarak gone, the crew found themselves in the Briefing Room, sitting around the long table. Armond stood at the head of it.

    "Alright. We all are aware of the situation. We met with the Cardassians and got into a little firefight. Innocent as it was, things happened and we ended up with high-level-valued prisoners on each end."

    Ensign Dan opened his arms. "Yeah, but what things?? What is the point of creating a mystery over an event with no significance?"

    "Didn't I give you an order about something? Could have sworn some exchange happened," the Tactical officer looked away in a genuine attempt at recollection. "Either way, just know that the incident involved Cetacean ops and a terrible aquatic miscommunication. Now, please, we must use this opportunity as an excuse to initiate transwarp and launch multi-vector mode somehow."

    ---

    Meanwhile, during warp transit, Gotens found himself in the Brig of the Tarak with Captain Daniel, each in separate holding cells.

    "What's going on? You look like a Phage-induced Vidiian transporter-blended with a Tellarite," the Commander asked.

    In the other cell, the Captain pointed to a mechanical device sitting in the middle of the Brig. "Shape holder device again, so they can get our Federation secrets."

    "Don't they realize we're the most honest race in the Galaxy?" the Commander suggested.

    Just then, Gul Meloneus entered with two security guards in toe. "Well, Gotens, I thought you'd learn from our last encounter not to trust me. In fact, I'm constantly subverting trust as a point of establishing character to others. I'm not even after anything most times."

    "Last encounter? You know I don't approve of backstory that comes out of nowhere at a crucial time!" Daniel targeted in a shrugging Commander's direction.

    Meloneus chuckled. "Then I will proceed as a contradiction. You see, some time ago, when we were under attack by a D'deridex-class Romulan warbird, your Commander on the U.S.S. Xena came to our aid. Little did they expect, such an act of kindness would go severely punished."

    "The Romulans turned on the Xena, and Meloneus did nothing to help us back," Gotens stated. "In fact, he used our distraction to board and take over the other ship. No doubt, for his own goals of collecting guideline bowls for Romulan haircuts."

    The Cardassian bellowed. "Hahaha! Oh, those were good betrayals, followed by hairstyle experimentation. You have to really be into the lesbian look."

    ---

    Meanwhile, Ensign Dan approached the communication window to the small section Cetacean ops on Deck 13. He accessed the console, to which Ensign Whui, a Delphine, approached from within the small watery office.

    "There are one of these on every ship and literally no one ever comes to visit," Whui complained. "Typical of you land loving, dolphin-hating cetacean ignorers!"

    Ensign Dan crossed his arms. "You know what you are. Just tell me what happened with Meloneus, so I can stay on duty and tell people my theory that we're all in the mind of a 1950s New York City science fiction writer."

    "That is meaningless without the social commentary! Fine," Whui conceded. "The Tarak attempted to trade subaquatic reconstruction data, but a disagreement between Agenos and Daniel erupted into full-scale reverb."

    The Ensign squinted. "What were you building?"

    "Everyone knows I only divulge information once a day, and that they approved this reno as a counter to that. Be gone foul land-tumor!"

    ---

    When Meloneus left the Tarak's Brig, the entrapped Captain Daniel began to feel the strain of his cemented configuration.

    "Ughhh. I'm losing consciousness. I can't hold on," he trailed, half hazardly.

    Gotens clamoured to the end of his containment field. "Captain! Can you hear me?" After seeing a nod, he settled. "Phew. I thought you blacked out."

    "I did. So, don't ask me questions or interrupt the diminishing experience."

    Gotens pointed to a vent feeding out of the Captain's cell. "Sir, I believe the forefields don't extend to those trillium bars. If you can change shape, even for a second, you could escape and destroy that Obsidian Order device."

    "Of course! This is all a test of my willpower. Challenge accepted, Commander," Daniel agreed before focusing on his abilities and beginning to warp his shape.

    The Trill clenched his fist in success. "That's the idea!" he announced excitedly before a jelly-shaped Captain told him to quiet down through classic Changeling-characteristic squishes. "Understood, sir."

    Daniel spewed through the vent and poured himself into a puddle onto the Brig floor before shapeshifting a hammer-ended arm and smashing the device. Regaining his energy, Daniel took his normal humanoid form.

    "I'm back!" the Captain declared. "Now they are going to pay." Almost leaving, he then remembered he had to free Gotens too. "Oh yeah. I forgot. Oopsy! Could you imagine if I just left you here? Haha. Hilarious." He observed Gotens' unimpressed deadpan. "Well, I guess you had to be there."

    ---

    Suddenly, the Phoenix-X dropped transwarp upon two Cardassian ships and the Tarak, just sitting in space. Armond initiated multi-vector separation, splitting the ship into three in order to swarm and fire from all angles. All three enemy vessels leapt into action and began retuning fire with disruptor beams.

    "You, over there. Counter now!" Meloneus ordered from his seat on the Bridge, before pointing his helmsmen. "Maneuver now!"

    His Operations officer turned. "Those are just generic commands. We were already going to do those."

    "It's been a long day of torturing!" Meloneus defended. "You know the pleasure it reverberates upon me."

    The Cardassian ships then held fire when the attacking Starfleet vectors ceased their barrage and hailed. "You are messing with the wrong people, Expanded-Neck Guys," Armond declared from the viewscreen.

    "First of all, that's specist. And second, pitting one culture against the other only leads to ignorance and bias! It's this one-note division that fosters an ongoing irreparable dichotomy."

    Armond squinted, unconvinced. "But that's your whole thing? Deep Space 9 wouldn't have any compelling stories without that?"

    "Huh? Oh, sorry, I blacked out there for a second," Meloneus shook off. "My doctor says bouts of ethicism results from not enough torturing in my week. Hence, your Captain. So, you see how it's a health issue."

    At the sudden mention, Captain Daniel and Commander Gotens then exploded onto the Bridge, shooting down several side-Cardassians with phase-disruptor rifles and holding aim at the still-seated Gul Meloneus.

    "What? Like this is my fault? The blame is far too obvious in the here and the now!" the over-bearing Dukat-copy countered.

    Everyone's attention switched to the viewscreen which showed Ensign Dan entering the Bridge of the Phoenix-X. "He's right! I finally figured out the 'mishap' that stemmed from Cetacean ops: It's being turned into a submerged library!"

    "Again with more last-minute revelatory backstory? It’s a shoe-horned, overly-done cliché," Daniel retaliated. "You're relieved!"

    Meloneus gritted in utter agony. "Agenos told you Cetacean torture chambers were the better way to go. The water deliciously gets into your enemies' arteries. This is what I was preparing you for, for tomorrow."

    "And I said liquid-emersed libraries reminded me of home!" Daniel argued before Meloneus attempted to blow up the ship and prompt Gotens into a retaliatory disruptor beam.

    After he went down, the Commander surveyed the rest of the Bridge. "Great. So, like his previous betrayal of me, we've betrayed the finer aspects of diplomacy."

    "Perhaps I am guilty of subverting Starfleet training with a disproportionate temperament," Daniel supplemented. "A lesson worth the mishap."

    Gotens shrugged in supposed agreement while picking up an alternative prize. "Or, there is this one bottle of kanar we could claim?"

    "Sold!" the Captain pointed before they both beamed back with it and more prisoners.

    ---

    Meanwhile, on the Bridge of the Phoenix-X, Ensign Dan found himself astonished at the outcome. Armond turned from the command chair.

    "Ah, that's what I forgot to do! Relieve you of duty," the Lieutenant Commander observed, holding up a PADD. "Apologies, Ensign. That was the one thing at the top of the Bridge side missions tab that I didn't even click 'accept' on."

    He shook his head in realization.

    "If I had done it earlier, you wouldn't have gotten this far."

    The Bajoran stared at his hands. "Will this go on my permanent record?"

    "When you reach a hundred, you get a plaque," Lieutenant Kayl settled optimistically as she ushered the hopeful Ensign into the turbolift.

    There, he found Ensign Billy in mid-ride to another destination. "Tried to know what was going on, eh?" Billy asked. "I'm on holodeck disposal now. Terrible idea. Never try to know stuff."
     
    Last edited: Jan 14, 2022
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  14. Robert Bruce Scott

    Robert Bruce Scott Captain Captain

    Joined:
    Jun 18, 2021
    "Evasive maneuvers, Ensign!"
    "What are those?"
    "Maneuvers that are evasive..."
    "More evasive than your answers?"

    Once again putting needles in the many bubbles of hackneyed cliches our beloved writers of Trek seemed to be unable to resist writing into the series again and again...

    Thanks!! rbs
     
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  15. Hawku

    Hawku Captain Captain

    Joined:
    Nov 7, 2005
    Location:
    Ontario, Canada
    Haha, thanks! True. It's a process. It's all good.
     
    Last edited: Oct 13, 2021
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  16. Hawku

    Hawku Captain Captain

    Joined:
    Nov 7, 2005
    Location:
    Ontario, Canada
    Author's notes: The original of this was done sometime in the late 90s as an edited RP chat. It was originally terribly off-mark and I later added the Tosk Hunters. This rewrite retconned a lot of the original to try to fit it in better with the timeline, but also kept a lot of things. The process was fun and it's way too long for a single Trek BBS post, so will break it out into two. Completed in January 2022. Enjoy!​

    Episode 4: The crew of the Phoenix-X is knocked out, leaving only the Captain to take the ship back and uncover a plot to revive the Maquis.

    Star Trek: Phoenix-X
    Cookies, Part I

    The Prometheus-class U.S.S. Phoenix-X held, stitched within the cold confines of interstellar space. Its commanding crew sat diligently at their stations on the Bridge as Lieutenant Wallace bumbled his way off the turbolift.

    "Hey-low, Starfleet memba's!" Wallace frumped in pure elating bliss.

    Both Captain Daniel, from his command chair, and Commander Gotens, standing nearby, took notice of the euphoric officer. "Ah, Lieutenant Wallace. To what do we owe the pleasure of your presence?"

    "Yeah, and it better be worthwhile!" Daniel snapped.

    Wallace then held up a tray of baked cookies. "Well, I made these cookies Armond asked for, and I thought I could bring some to the Bridge for everyone, Cap'n."

    "You mean, replicated," Red, from the helm, amended.

    The other officer chuckled. "Aheuh, heuh! Why, no. I baked them myself, Cap'n."

    "Very well. Proceed with the pre-established baked goods dissemination that so many office workplaces toil on and on," Daniel consented as Wallace began generously handing them out to the senior staff. He then leaned into a whisper with the Commander. "Why does he keep calling everyone Cap'n??"

    Gotens followed suit. "It's a new trend with the kids to call everyone Cap'n. I found it when I was browsing the Urban Space Dictionary."

    "Yous twos Cap'ns are m'favourite," Wallace leaned in after he was done. Then, noticing Lieutenant Commander Kugo enter the Bridge, he offered her a cookie. "Here you go, Cap'n!"

    Accepting it, Kugo then turned to her commanding officers and spoke while chomping. "Cap'ns, I just wanted to report the preliminary updates to the transwarp are done and we are ready for stress testing."

    "I'd like to protest the fact we're toying with our transwarp when it's obvious said likewise-manipulations are what destroyed all previous Phoenix-ships and accelerated us to the -X postfix?" Kayl interjected from Ops.

    Red turned as well. "Also, how is our current transwarp not fast enough for us? It's already 20 times the speed of warp?"

    "It's never enough!" Daniel snapped. "We must at no time fall into complacency and always push the limits of being OP! Always and forever onward!"

    Gotens addressed everyone as well. "Yeah, and everyone is to eat their cookies as a concession to never question authority ever again— Especially if there are ethical uncertainties."

    "Oh man, I hate those. Anyway, let's begin," Daniel offered, now pleasantly to Kugo while the crew began eating their treats.

    ---

    As the Phoenix-X sped into transwarp, a Klingon and an Andorian passenger found themselves unnoticed in a hectic Main Engineering.

    "Did you put the chilled-out substance in the baked goods?" the Klingon, Ragon asked.

    The Andorian nodded. "Right next to the nutmeg. I've also implemented our own modifications to the transwarp stress test. We are now going towards our—"

    "Ah-ah-ah-ah!" Ragon hushed. "You know better than to explain everything in plain sight. Now, when I push this button, everyone who ate a cookie will be knocked unconscious."

    As Lieutenant Kayl was entering Engineering, she just barely caught that. "What did you just say?"

    "Oh, uh, when I push this button, everyone playing hooky will be caught in conscience!"

    She smirked before continuing passed. "Hah! That'll be hilarious. Carry on, you sketchy, no-clearance guests-in-a-restricted zone."

    "The computer reports that everyone on the ship has eaten a cookie," Kotah examined when she was gone. "Luckily, everyone agreed to have their stomachs data-tracked for a previous synthejiuana blind test."

    Ragon nodded in deviation. "It's going to be so weird when Starfleet approves that."

    ---

    Meanwhile, on the Bridge, Ensign Dan found himself unsettled by the consumption of his cookie. The Captain took notice and quickly snapped.

    "Ensign Dan, you are relieved!"

    And a second later, the Bajoran toppled over, unconscious.

    "Well, you don't have to take it that bad. You know what? On second thought, you're back on duty," the Captain rescinded, excitedly, a minute before he realized the entire Bridge crew had fallen over as well. "Computer, is anyone moving on the ship?"

    The computer replied, over-air, "One Andorian, one Klingon, and the Captain are the only non-motionless forms on the Phoenix-X."

    "I'm so glad we installed those porch light motion detectors on every deck," Daniel digressed. He checked a few pulses to ensure his subordinates were still alive then went to a control panel to track the intruders. His display indicated a turbolift moving toward the Bridge. "What!? That thing is programmed to jam during hijackings!"

    Captain Daniel took the shape of a hard-edged wooden chair, seconds before the doors opened, dispelling Ragon and Kotah.

    "Ahhh, the legendary Phoenix-X. I've always wanted a ship like this," Ragon consumed quite vigorously while taking a seat in the command chair. "Although, it is rather too comfy. The coarseness of the executive officer's perch is more my style," he added while appreciating the nearby, out-of-place wooden chair.

    Kotah checked the Operations console. "Ship systems are good, as well as weapons."

    "Excellent," the Klingon replied. "Set course for the Maquis cell at Moghren III. Never thought I'd be helping a dying terrorist group, but money is how I will honor my House."

    The Andorian popped. "How is the mistress?"

    "She wants me to pick up some blood milk on the way home."

    Kotah nodded. "Ah, domestic life. Also, internal sensors are saying not all personnel are accounted for. The Captain never had a cookie!"

    "What!? They are delicious!" Ragon countered. "The nutmeg, alone." And then, "Okay, let's find him. And while you're at it, I want you to check on our Cardassian prisoner. That's right. You can do two things!"

    ---

    After a thorough perusing over unconscious bodies, Ragon made it to the Messhall for a break. There, Kotah joined him to report his own findings.

    "Meloneus rattled off several backstories about his past almost immediately," the Andorian noted. "But I did learn that I could perform two things, as you said."

    Ragon slapped the bar table. "I told you! Let's prematurely celebrate such revelatory multi-tasking by layering in a toast in a momentary dropping of our guards."

    "Surely, that's a terrible idea," offered Daniel, stepping out of the shadows to reveal himself. "A person can only do so many things at once at the behest of the main operation."

    Kotah's jaw dropped. "Holy crap. He's right. That shadowy corner was one of the last spots we had to check!" The Andorian then took out his phaser as Ragon pulled the bat'leth off his back.

    "Mooooooooohhhaaaa!" Daniel transformed himself into an Adamantaimai, a giant hard-shelled, heavy-limbed beast, scaring Kotah away before smacking Ragon across the room. "Ah. I'm just remembering I left the kettle on."

    ---

    In haste, Kotah made his way toward the Bridge, in the turbolift. The doors opened and he ran to the helm to check ETA to the Maquis base.

    "Holy crap! Starfleet employs Changelings now?? I really have been living in my mother's basement for too long."

    ---

    Ragon awoke, groggily, got up and made his way to the Shuttle Bay. He boarded the Class-2 shuttle Roche, ejected into mid-transwarp space, and locked clamps onto the outer hull of the Phoenix-X.

    "Shapeshifters are Dominion leaders, so either this vessel has been compromised, or he just works here?"

    When the ship dropped back into normal space at Moghren III, the Klingon observed they had arrived earlier than predicted.

    "Also, Kotah lied for the purposes of double-cross!" the scrag-monster realized. "Could it be? First the Captain is morphogenic, then my partner is in cahoots with the buyers, while all I ever had going for me was my last place Forcas III trophy selling on Klingon eBay?"

    ---

    On the Bridge, Captain Daniel took the shape of a Pollensalta, a giant poisonous flower, approached Kotah and pressed his lethal petals against the Andorian.

    "You will feel the wrath of my delightful wonder or suffer the pollen-sneezing consequences!"

    Kotah struggled under the pressure. "Aah! My brother was killed by a giant Edosian orchid. It punched his lights out!"

    "There are entire planets where flora go to war with each other and have unspeakable relations!"

    The Andorian recoiled. "Okay, okay! We tricked Wallace into duping your crew and planned to deliver everyone to the surface where you would be fed cookies and offered bovine milking opportunities all day. It's one of the last, secret Maquis cells and good bakery/farms this side the Alpha Quadrant."

    "Impossible? The Maquis were wiped out by the Dominion-Cardassian joint forces last year?"

    Kotah almost regurgitated at the sight of him. "The cell was previously planted as an out-of-bounds, off-radar coordinator for proxy-world fleetyards to produce attack fighters and Peregrine-classes. Your ship was to be their flag vessel and prize for their most recent success."

    "Curse those rebellious, low-budget Bajoran Resistance copy-catters."

    The Andorian retched, slightly, but held it in. "No! We're an annexed ex-Federation group who want revenge against the Federation for being annexed!"

    "Aaand there goes my reproductive leaves," the Daniel-flower said as they both watched them fall to the floor, prompting Kotah to involuntarily upchuck. "Yeah, I missed pollination season again."

    ---

    Meanwhile, Captain Aeris met with Captain Cid and Admiral Cloud in the Observation lounge aboard Starbase 55.

    "My ship reports a fleet of vessels forming in Sector 309," Aeris said, dropping the PADD onto the table. "The ships are near-unidentifiable, as we are reading signs of Federation and alien."

    Cid pointed at the wall monitor displaying an external visual of the Moghren system. "Residual warp trails indicates this as the likely location of the last, last known Maquis cell. Not that we don't say that about every cell now."

    "Stop beating around the bush, Captains," the Admiral spread. "Your analysis from the Xena indicates Tosk Hunter technology. You believe the pre-Maquis stealth-acquired it during the Gamma Quadrant Hunter's one and only incursion at Deep Space 9 and replicated it from Moghren into a fleet of ships."

    Aeris shrugged. "Well, it's either that or said Hunters have somehow crossed into our Quadrant and amassed in Sector 309 under the tutelage of the Angry Humans."

    "Seems wildly implausible, but I like it! Alert the writers!" the Admiral began before realizing. "Damn. Forgot this was real life. Never mind."

    ---

    Elsewhere, on the Cardassian Hideki-class C.U.V. Isotope, the recently dejected Gul Dukat sat in its darkened Conference room, reading Bajoran texts when an officer entered with a report.

    "You said we got them all," Dukat erupted. "The Maquis are a dreck on the backside of your Cardassian freedom."

    Mag, a female and rank Glinn, flipped the screen to a view of the Moghren system. "Our intel indicates one last cell here. In fact, it wasn't really intel so much as they contacted us and told us out-right."

    "Seems like terrible tactics," Dukat raised a brow. "If you don't get them, their own ineptitude will." And then he realized, "They want to offer the Dominion something in order to let them be, don't they?"

    The Glinn nodded. "They're so last-resort that they've relinquished their obsession with their past Cardassian-acquired worlds and desire only to focus their fight with the Federation now."

    "I respect the eleventh-hour concessions of a broken group that I broke with my unrelenting vengeance,” the towering scaly man asserted. "We should humor them, but only as a first resort. Then ensure things to go sideways, fast."

    ---

    Later, the Phoenix-X sped through transwarp as the crew were slowly revived, one by one, by the efforts of the ship-wide-accessing Emergency Medical Hologram.

    "Please state the nature of the medical emergency," he would chirp every time he woke someone. "Please state the nature of the medical emergency."

    On the Bridge, Daniel, back in humanoid form, frustrated, "Ugh! Computer, delete EMH from the ship, immediately!"

    "Deletion subroutines have been deleted," came the reply over-air.

    Gotens sat up, groggily. "Yeah, sorry about that. That cookie threw me for a loop and I half-woke, slapping the consoles trying to order tequila."

    "Dammit, Commander, you know we have a mini fridge under the helm," Daniel argued. "Never mind. Wallace, take that Andorian to the Brig and never talk to strangers again."

    Wallace frumped as he got to his duties. "I am sad. I am going to read more books!"

    "How is that going to make a difference? Never mind. Just do the things," Daniel sanctioned. "Red, tractor beam that shuttle, and do it with a vindictive attitude."

    Red attempted to get a locator on the vessel to no avail. "It has landed on the planet where there is too much interference in the atmosphere to even get a transporter lock. These Maquis have diseased this world to hide themselves."

    "Oh, now they're okay with poisoned atmospheres?" Daniel criticized before a nearby console alert went off, prompting him to check it. "Long range sensors are picking up a massive fleet of ships in Sector 309?" And then he remembered what the Andorian said. "A prize for their most recent success."

    Gotens perked. "Ah, succeeding: The winning of achievements."

    ---

    Down in the depths of the Klingon home world Qo'noS, two warrior officials congregated at an iron table in a dark, unclean conference room.

    "There is a traitor from our midst that has come into contact with this last Maquis cell and their new fleet," Bahah, a thick haired soldier summarized. "Federation intel reports it outrageously large."

    Logtow, a lean build official with a braided goatee, erupted, "Foolish miscreants, always trying to boost themselves for amplifications sakes!"

    "Right? It's an obvious compensation for a lack of equanimity," Bahah added. "Either way, in light of our own intel, a team of skittish Klingon half-warriors always fidgeting their heads in all directions, we must stop them."

    Logtow nodded. "Also, those guys give me the nehret freak outs."

    TO BE CONCLUDED...
     
    Last edited: Jan 20, 2022
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  17. Robert Bruce Scott

    Robert Bruce Scott Captain Captain

    Joined:
    Jun 18, 2021
    Both would be quite obvious and inexpensive 20th Century solutions for 24th Century problems...

    Thanks!! rbs
     
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  18. Hawku

    Hawku Captain Captain

    Joined:
    Nov 7, 2005
    Location:
    Ontario, Canada
    Yeah! We have the technology. We should keep using it.
     
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  19. Hawku

    Hawku Captain Captain

    Joined:
    Nov 7, 2005
    Location:
    Ontario, Canada
    Star Trek: Phoenix-X
    Cookies, Part II

    As the Phoenix-X docked at Deep Space 9, its crew worked tirelessly to ensure systems were ready for battle. The senior staff took seats in the Conference room.

    "All personnel are accounted for," Gotens reported. "Even Heelix, our off-brand Talaxian knock-off chef not based on anyone that we'd be overly familiar with at this point."

    Daniel nodded, appreciatively. "He's really trying, and that's what counts."

    "Captain, confirming ship's systems are back to optimal conditions," Kugo reported. "Even the multi-vector mode is running over peak efficiency, despite that one time they went flying in all directions."

    The shapeshifter pressed his forehead. "Oh, that was bad." Then he straightened his gaze. "Armond, Kayl, how are our two new blitzkrieg projects coming along?"

    "Sir, more non-canon weaponry is just going to make us even more OP than before!" Armond argued.

    Gotens perked. "Except that, according to new intel from the Xena, the Phengroth system contains two fleetyards being coordinated from Moghren III."

    "You see? Like a Balok marionetting a creepy alien puppet but there's two of them and they're facilitating an outrageously impossible invasion force," Daniel analogized. "Meaning, we need to become ridiculously over-powered as a backup, per Starfleet tradition, which was my whole point to begin with."

    "Fine, but you have to let us call new strangers we meet 'friend', sarcastically, no matter how cliché you think it is," Kayl conflated.

    The Captain frustrated, "A week's pass, and that's it! Now go, before I next agree to purple birthday cakes or forced-comradery at unsanctioned staff parties."

    ---

    Down in Engineering, Ensign Dan and BOB were on a special guest tour, observing the stations and taking photos of the warp core for their scrapbooks.

    "Can't believe we offer this, considering the highly classified nature of this transwarp," the Ensign observed. "But I am relieved of duty, so I might as well take in the sights."

    The Ferengi shrugged. "And they're always telling me I'm not an officer, so I'm willing to tag along," he added before reading the brochure more closely. "Oh, this is a Safety Inspection Tour for the Corps of Engineers."

    "Cookie?" came the ask from Wallace as the two suddenly found him at another station with an open oven door above it. "I just kid. This is a redemption project without the knock-out drug, for my own rehabilitation."

    Ensign Dan was taken aback. "Your speech pattern? It's getting coherent!"

    "I told you, I read more books now," the other officer said as he held one up. "Ever hear of defragmenting a hard drive? They're the soothing baked goods of the files world!" The three then noticed the book was completely wet. "Oh, the library used to be Cetacean ops."

    ---

    Elsewhere, Daniel sat in his Ready Room on communications with Admiral Cloud from Starbase 55 in front of his desktop viewscreen.

    "...And that's how I convinced Admiral Leyton I was a figment of his LDS trip," the Captain concluded. "We vacuumed everything the next day."

    Cloud shook his head, impressed. "I kind of like him more now, traitor-to-the-Federation notwithstanding." Then he straightened. "Now, you must know you will have the support of the Klingons and a rag-tag group of Vulcan ships who have deemed assistance logical."

    "Them, plus the 7th Fleet will ensure we square things off before the Kot'baval Festival where I will triumphantly unveil my new Molor look."

    The Admiral held up a halting-palm. "You might want to read the room first. Also, I know this upcoming battle is detrimental, but unfortunately said available fleet has been called to Romulus for a Dominion wartime welcoming ceremony."

    "Who convinced them to join? Must've been one hell of a good episode," Daniel surmised. "Either way, even with the guest non-Dominion-occupied fleets, we now don't have enough for this?"

    Cloud sent over some data. "Not exactly. You'll have the Xena, Defiant and the Enterprise. At least two of those are protected by plot armor."

    "I know what they are!" Daniel snapped before cutting the transmission. "Stupid Enterprise, only exploding when it's cinematically convenient."

    ---

    The three-nacelled Galaxy-class U.S.S. Xena sped through warp for the Phengroth system. Captain Aeris paced her Bridge in anticipation of the immanent battle.

    "Here's hoping the few of us can take them all on," Aeris graved. "The fate of the Alpha Quadrant lies here."

    "I mean, there is that whole war with the Dominion too, right?" Onegera asked from tactical. "We're not just ripping off a previously established scenario for no reason, are we?"

    The Captain snapped. "You're relieved!" Then realizing, "Oh, sorry. I was having Ensign Dan flashbacks. Man, it's so much nicer now that he's transferred to the Phoenix-X."

    "Approaching bogey cluster," Wing reported as the Xena dropped warp next to the all-ready Klingon/Vulcan flotilla and the few Starfleet vessels. "There are enemy fleets in orbit of Phengroth V and Phengroth VI."

    Aeris stood. "Open a channel to the ridiculously over-powered Maquis." After a moment, she began, "To the vessels amassing in this system, you are in a violation of Federation space and are to stand down or be faced with the might of Starfleet arrogance."

    "They're powering up weapons in response," Onegera reported. "One of their energy signatures is forming in the shape of a giant middle finger!"

    The Captain turned. "Are we still on the UPN family network?" After checking, she realized. "Holy shit. It's streaming! We can do anything!" But the crew just looked perplexed. "I mean, engage 4K battle sequence."

    ---

    The joint Klingon/Vulcan group split off towards the fifth planet while the Starfleet vessels veered towards the sixth and started opening fire on the attack-ready enemy. Captain Sisko sat in the command chair of the Defiant-class U.S.S. Defiant while his crew worked through the chaos.

    "Are we really helping the Phoenix-X with one of their episodes after what they did to us?" O'Brien lamented from his console. "Knocking Deep Space 9 into the Wormhole was the dumbest concept ever!"

    Kira raised a brow. "Enlisted officers don't hold grudges, Chief. At least, not until we can nudge those lackadaisies into that ship-shrinking subspace compression anomaly."

    "I think you should think again, Major," countered Sisko. "It's payback on whomever wormhole-planted that Cardassian gravitational probe that we should be after."

    As the Defiant phaser-pulsed ship after ship, Bashir added, "I second that, and I think this last Maquis cell is having a double existential threat with their sudden death by Dukat and the war, so they're acting out."

    "Whatever the case, I want that planet's atmosphere rendered uninhabitable for the next 50 years," Sisko stood before checking and realizing they were out of trilithium resin. "Damn! Well, next time."

    ---

    Explosion after explosion flamed passed the hull of the Sovereign-class U.S.S. Enterprise-E as the Federation ships plowed through enemy vessels like grishnar cats in the tail-end of mating season. Captain Picard held his stance steady as the ship reverberated from action.

    "Sir, I'm getting a message from the Diplomatic Corps that they now want to regulate us to a diplomatic role?" Riker reported from his chair console.

    Picard pointed to tactical in a fire-order as console debris slow-mo blew passed his side hair. "And waste this sleek movie-level cruiser on budget effects and well-thought-out story-telling?" He shook his head. "No, the Phoenix-X was there to assist in defeating the backup Borg in utmost redundancy, so we'll be there for their nonsensical Tosk Hunter/Maquis mashup."

    "I feel that you are too agreeable, sir," Troi observed seconds before a zombie look overtook Picard, prompting him to try to assimilate the nearest officer.

    Riker immediately grabbed the Captain and slapped him back and forth a few times. "You are out of line, Jean-Luc! Snap out of it!"

    "Okay, okay!" Picard awoke. "Must've been my Borg implants, Commander. Beverly said they would act up again in high level combat situations."

    The Commander nodded. "Perhaps the diplomatic regression wouldn't be so bad after all. I could have time to install that Bridge joystick I've always wanted."

    "Very well," Picard conceded in mid-combat. He paused. "Will, while I was in that trance, I got an image of someone. It was a she. Her name was Seven of Nine?"

    ---

    Meanwhile, in the Delta Quadrant, aboard the Intrepid-class U.S.S. Voyager, Seven of Nine in her cove found herself suddenly spasming out while disabling the ship's warp core.

    "What the hell? We're fighting the Hirogen!" Janeway erupted as she ran in to catch the ex-Borg drone from falling. "You know we're still expelling our frustrations from when the Phoenix-X inexplicably knocked us back to the Delta Quadrant."

    Seven shook her head to regain focus. "Sorry, Captain. It's no secret I share the crew's discontent, but I suddenly experienced an out of body stasis. I had an image of someone. A he. This male goes by the name, Jean-Luc Picard?"

    "Huh!" Janeway reactively gasped, a second before the Hirogen destroyed Voyager. The holodeck then shut off, ending the exercise.

    ---

    Anyway. Back at the battle at Phengroth VI, the Phoenix-X was now split into three multi-vector mode sections, spiraling and phasering around enemy ship after enemy ship, popping them like divine popcorn kernels.

    "Ahhh. Just like the movie nights on the NX-01 Enterprise," Daniel speculated before he noticed the Beta vector take out several enemy vessels. "Right! The battle. Gamma section, prepare the blitzkrieg weapon: The Transwarp Flare."

    "Can't believe we voted that name in? Now we're just being facetious," declared Armond as his vector dropped a volatile energy bolt from its rear into a group of enemy starships, exploding a sporadic bubble around them and knocking them out of normal space. "It worked, despite the nomenclature! Too bad that was our only one and we can't make any more."

    Suddenly, with the warped space breaking down communications barriers, a static energy was then heard over speakers. "Because you stole the resin from the Defiant?" Kugo asked. "Oh, and also, it caused the transmission layer between enemy ships to become discernable."

    "She's right! Comm traffic indicates they are computer-piloted starships?" Kayl noticed. "Like the Romulan drone ships of the 22nd century, or the Section 31 drone ships of the 23rd century, or our bland O'Brien-repelling cargo drone ships from present day?"

    A monotonous voice then bellowed through the speakers. "This is the Drai Hunter AI of a new type of drone ship to be recorded for your archives and listing purposes. You are in violation of our sacred attack frequency. You will disconnect and find your own cherished connections to whatever you revere for yourselves. I don't know, like, bags of Kelpien meat or something?"

    "Haven't tried it. Never will," Daniel announced as he watched the depleted Maquis-Hunter ships from each world begin moving to reform between the intervening space. "This is the U.S.S. Phoenix-X, and you simply must know that you've been repurposed in a way that contradicts your people's Hirogen-copying ideals."

    The AI erupted, "We were the original hunters! Now this rando-species from a completely contrived Quadrant gets multiple appearances? Like they could ever be as compelling as us!"

    "They've switched frequencies and sent us an invite to their home world," Kugo reported. "Not that they stopped trying to kill everyone. So, backup blitzkrieg?"

    Daniel nodded. "Activate the Vectoral Quandifier!" he declared before his three vectors moved into a triangular formation to feed a flow of quantum particles to the middle of their arrangement. An electrifying beam then shot out from it to the bulk of the Maquis-Hunter ships, disintegrating less than half of them and leaving onboard ship systems vulnerable for the rest. "So, this is what happens when superabundance meets extravagance."

    "It is clear to us that you have matched our aggressively over-poweredness with your own absurdity," the AI called. "Which we now realize is beyond Drai Hunter original purposes. Unfortunately, our Maquis programming cannot be appetized."

    When Wallace entered the Bridge with a new tray of cookies, he began accessing a nearby control panel. "Hey-low, Starfleet memba's! Did somebody request delectability? Allow me to initiate Cookie Modifier Omicron, the third blitzkrieg and a redemption project from I, me."

    "Sure, but you just appeared out of nowhere with no explanation or any set up from my point of—" Daniel started seconds before Wallace transmitted a virtual cookie program to the now susceptible Maquis-Hunter ships, causing their aggressive programming to be tampered by palatable and flavorful cookie-shaped algorhythms, and the AI to reclaim control and stand-down the fleet. "Whoa! You did stuff!"

    The Lieutenant bit a celebratory bite into one of his treats as the allied ships also stood down and the AI called again. "Indeed. Such a delicious and savory modification in the form of us accepting cookies. In the old days, such acceptings would merely have saved login information and browsing history. We now concede and desire seconds."

    "Done! Also, let us know if you'd like a virtual milk, or simulated ice cream?" Daniel offered. "I'm told the artificial chocolate cake is to die for."

    ---

    Meanwhile, the Isotope took orbit of Moghren III, and Gul Dukat, sitting in the command chair, looked up from his old book to the view screen.

    "The volatile interference of the planet's atmosphere is in a patterned flux," Eldora reported from her console. "Like a swarm of synchronized Bajoran locusts."

    Mag turned. "It's weird how you can train them on some worlds. Well, variety, I guess. As for the atmosphere, the window for transport will open for us in five Earth minutes, the only minutes everyone goes by, so long as nothing interrupts us."

    "Sir, I.K.S. Roku is decloaking off the port bow by way of contradiction!" Tellus announced amongst the alert beeping. "Quite sneaky if you ask me. Veryyyyy Romulan."

    The screen clicked away from the K'Vort-class bird of prey to the view of its commanding officer, a Captain Wulg. "Don't bother comparing us to those pointy-eared Vulcan-fails. And, if you're wondering how we knew what you were saying, we assumed it, as it is always what Cardassians say when Klingons decloak in front of them."

    "It's a mandated banter that I reinstated when I got back into power," Dukat offered. "Now, aside from the fact I went into a one-ship war with you people and am now in a quadrant-wide war with the same, it's my understanding that I have one of your men to thank for this monotonous trade."

    Wulg nodded. "Ragon. Like us, he is against the current High Council and will assist us in one day overthrowing it, as is the tradition for us Klingons. He pretends to be a family man and is good at faking Cardassian signatures in prison cells. You are mostly kanar-based, I am told."

    "It's like how humans are 60% water," Dukat confirmed. "Very well. We get our man, you get yours, and whatever is left of this sad, little version of the Maquis gets a free pass. Not that I plan to be around to enforce it or anything. I'm into Bajoran mythology now."

    The Klingon shrugged. "Ah, character development." After the screen clicked off, Ragon was transported to the Roku, and Meloneus was transported to the Isotope.

    "Wow. There was, like, one guy for that whole last Maquis cell down there. Just a programmer, remote deploying hybrid Maquis-Hunter ships for the Drai AI. His name was Spencer," the returning Cardassian commented. "His office chair was squeaky and everything. Anyway, now that I'm back, I declare that I will have my revenge on that Phoenix-X crew."

    Dukat turned, similarly. "And, I'll have my revenge on that Sisko."

    "We're a lot alike," Meloneus realized. "Even our haircuts. It's weird, but I'm okay with it." The Isotope then turned in space and jumped into warp, returning back to the elaborate, well-executed Dominion plot line that no other war would ever do as well, ever again.
     
    Last edited: Jan 31, 2022
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  20. Robert Bruce Scott

    Robert Bruce Scott Captain Captain

    Joined:
    Jun 18, 2021
    Easily the most fun about your writing is the endless National Lampoon style asides the characters make tacitly acknowledging their status. The franchise did this on rare occasion (my favorite being then end of a Sherlock Holmes episode in STNG in which Picard wondered if he might also be just a program running in someone else's entertainment system.)

    Thanks!! rbs
     
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