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Posted on Mar 10, 2018 @ 4:32pm by Captain Michael Turlogh Kane

Mission: The Trouble With Triticale


(Continued from "Power To The People")


Captain's log, supplemental - Acamar is falling away behind us, and the Phoenix is en route to Earth. We are transporting several passengers to Earth, and I am taking advantage of this opportunity to meet one of them...


Location: USS Phoenix, en route to sector zero-zero-one
Stardate: [2.18]0303.1245
Scene: Corridor, deck 40 - drive section

Michael Turlogh Kane and Kassandra Thytos nearly bumped into each other approaching the corner, but both of them saw one another at the last moment and drew up. Kane hadn't been in this part of the ship for weeks - the main brig was only one deck from the Phoenix's ventral hull, almost at the very bottom of the ship. This was not his domain - it was far below the main bridge and his own quarters, and he rarely had occasion to venture this far down into the ship's depths.

"Heya, Cap," said Kass. She jerked a thumb over her shoulder, ignoring Kane's bristling at her lack of formality. "Y'all headin' for the brig, huh?"

Kane nodded. "Right. You?"

"Checkin' the heavy weapons lockers. Wanna git every las' scrappa that bramatine-laced shit outta here. Ya'll ever wonder jus' how hard it is ta disposea that stuff? Replicators can't break it down none 'cause it'll git its ass inta the friggin' bio-neural packs an' fuck alla that shit up." Kass sighed and ran a rough hand through her short copper hair. "Ah need a friggin' vacation, that's what."

"Ever thinking of going home?" Kane leaned against the bulkhead and folded his arms. "Sherman's Planet's relatively easy to get to."

Kass' eyes narrowed. "Ain't never goin' back ta that shithole. Hell, Ah couldn't waita git offa it - lied 'bout mah age in order ta join the Corps. Ya'll ever seen a million square kilometers o' amber waves o' grain? Make ya wanna puke. An' don' even git me started on friggin' farmin'."

Kane shrugged. Kass had a point - worlds like Sherman's Planet and Gault were the Federation's breadbaskets when it came to feeding billions of its citizens. Despite the existence of industrial-grade replicators, there was also a high demand for fresh food throughout the Federation, and not every colony world had enough replicators to go round. They were few and far between, but farming colony worlds still existed. Kane could imagine the scene - miles upon miles of grain, stretching to the terraformed horizon, being tended to by automated drones or robots while the farmer controlled everything from his central hub, only intervening personally whenever something bad happened. Communities like that tended to be insular and staid, and not the kind of place he could imagine a young Kassandra Thytos being happy in.

"Ya ever been ta Sherman's Planet?" Kass was saying.

Kane shook his head.

"Y'all're better off. Friggin' shithole fulla rednecks and goddam triticale farmers. Did I say it was a friggin' shithole?"

"You mentioned it," Kane deadpanned. Suddenly, he stopped and stood up straight, looking over Kass' shoulder down the corridor the corner at the other end. Kass turned around to follow his gaze.

Captain Smooshy was ambling nonchalantly around the corner, a rope of drool trailing from his slavering mouth, tongue lolling stupidly from out of his throat. The pug stopped at the corner.

"Don't you dare," growled Kane.

Smooshy lifted his left rear leg and urinated all over the deckplate. The stream of pug-pee splattered everywhere, but Smooshy didn't seem to mind. He evacuated his bladder without a care in the galaxy, and when he was done, he gave it a sniff and ambled onward to wherever he was going.

Kass grinned. "Hey, looks like Aerdan let the Smoosher outta sickbay! Nice ta see the little guy runnin' around again, huh! That's great, ain't it, Cap?"

Kane balled his fists. Now he had to walk past a puddle of pug-pee to get to where he needed to go. He was certain that the goddam animal had done it deliberately. "Oh, wonderful," he said, his words dripping with sarcasm. "I'll catch up with you later, Major."

"See ya later, Cap!" said Kass cheerily, heading for the turbolift. Was it Kane's imagination, or was there an undercurrent of amusement in her voice? He wouldn't be surprised. Not for the first time, he made a mental note to punt the pug out of the nearest airlock as soon as he caught up to the animal.

He sighed as he approached the puddle. Best foot forward.


Scene: Main brig - deck 40, drive section

Kane walked into the main brig and recalled the eight years he had spent in Security when he was junior officer. That all seemed so long ago now, like a strange dream he used to have about himself. The years were falling away, one by one, and so were the chapters of his life. Time to write another one.

Eve Dalziel and Jasmine Yu were waiting by Evangeline Montoya's cell. Nearby, Sebastian Molina monitored the forcefield and stood ready to back them up if trouble broke out.

Montoya was lounging on the bed, looking at them all. This wasn't the first time she'd been a guest of the Phoenix's brig - the last time was three years ago following Arthur Embry's ill-fated attempt to take over the ship on the voyage home from Limbo. Her eyebrows shot up when she saw Kane approach, but she said nothing. Instead, she slowly lifted her right hand to her face, put her thumb in her mouth, and started to suck on it.

Kane eyed her warily. Evangeline Montoya was a former Starfleet officer who deserved everything that the Federation was about to throw at her. After falling in with the serial killer Rawyvin Seth, she had been captured on the ancient Triangle space station of Limbo when Seth had been killed. On the way to the Elandipole system, she had joined up with some disaffected citizens of Limbo in an attempt to take over the ship, before being defeated at the last and recaptured again. Turned over to Starfleet Security, she had disappeared from the Phoenix's radar, before cropping up again several weeks ago, working as a bramatine smuggler for Pangeos Pathways. Fate, or fortune, had delivered her back into Starfleet's hands again. Now, here she was, sucking her thumb in a brig cell.

Kane looked at Jasmine. "Has she said anything?"

Jasmine shook her head. "Miss Montoya is exercising her right not to answer questions in case she incriminates herself. She is asking for legal representation. I have already informed her that she will be transferred to Starfleet Security when we arrive at Earth."

"Where she will be tried, convicted, and incarcerated for a long time, just like everyone else involved with the bramatine conspiracy," said Kane pointedly. Montoya grinned at him and licked her thumb lasciviously.

Kane turned to Eve. "Has your department made any headway with her?"

Eve shook her head. "There's still time before we reach Earth. One of the ship's counselors will get a full psych eval ready for our arrival."

Kane looked at Montoya distastefully. "That oral fixation alone should keep you busy."

He approached the forcefield, and Montoya got up from her bed, taking her thumb out of her mouth and coming close to him. Kane stared at her through the shimmering forcefield, realising that he had never been this close to her before. They started at one another, that same maddening smile playing over Montoya's lips.

Finally, she spoke. Her voice was cracked. "I know that I'm crazy, Captain Kane."

Kane put his hands behind his back. "Is that right?"

She nodded slowly. "The Federation doesn't execute crazy people."

"The Federation doesn't execute anyone, Miss Montoya."

"I won't go to jail. They'll put me in a hospital with other crazy people." Montoya was nodding as she was talking, like she could see all this clearly in the future. "Only I'm not as crazy as them, and I'll keep quiet like a mouse until they think I'm not a threat anymore. Then, when they're looking the other way, I'll escape. Then you'll see me again."

"I see." Kane looked at Sebastian Molina. "Did you get all that, crewman?"

Molina nodded, saving the recording to the computer. "Yes, Captain."

Montoya looked shocked. She seemed about to say something else, but then her thumb came up again, and she put it back in her mouth. Looking sullenly at Kane, she retreated to her bed, and lay down on it.

Kane looked at Jasmine and Eve. "Keep me informed."

He left them behind, thinking ahead to their arrival on Earth.


NRPG: We're still en route to Earth and we need moar posts!!

Jerome McKee
the Soul of Captain Michael Turlogh Kane
Commanding Officer

"He speaks an infinite deal of nothing!"
- Shakespeare's "The Merchant of Venice", Act 1, Scene 1.117



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