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Not A Tribble In The World

Posted on Mar 29, 2018 @ 2:57am by Captain Kassandra Thytos
Edited on on Mar 29, 2018 @ 2:58am

Mission: The Trouble With Triticale

"Not a tribble in the world"

(Cont. "Haulage")

* * *=(/\)=* * *

Stardate: 2.18.0328.2155
Scene: Bridge

Sherman’s Planet.


Kassandra stomped into the turbolift with a little bit more force than was strictly necessary. It was a pity, she thought, that analogue doors no longer existed in most places. It was impossible to properly indicate how irritated you were with the world when every single door simply hissed open and closed behind you like a whisper.

She looked at her chronometer. She might be able to get a holodeck so she could punch out of some of her frustrations at this time of the day, or failing that, it was busy enough that Iphie might not have time to pry about her foul mood since the dinner rush would be on. But then again, that increased the chances that Eve might be around, and the last thing she wanted to discuss were her feelings.

The turbolift had obligingly waited for her to give it instructions, but now, the door hissed open once more to admit the familiar form of Captain Kane. She froze and forced a smile at him.

“At ease Major. I’ve seen more natural looking smiles on a strychnine victim,” the Irishman said with a raised eyebrow.

“That obvious, eh?” Kassandra said, letting the smile collapse.

“Fortunately for the galaxy, deception is not one of your strong suites,” the Captain studied her in that way he had that sometimes made people feel as though he thought they were some sort of puzzle that he just had to say the right things to get what he wanted from them. “You aren’t happy to be going to Sherman’s Planet, are you?”

“At ease sir, I’ve heard more convincin’ small talk from Vulcans,” Kassandra cast her eyes sideways to emphasize her point.

“That obvious, eh?” A slight smile pulled at the corner of the captain’s mouth.

“Hobnobbin’ with yer juniors ain’t exactly yer strong suite,” she retorted. “I’ll fergive yer blatant attempt to determine whether or not I was plannin to detonate a photon torpedo inta the middle of the effin’ triticale an watch the resultin’ shootin’ star display from middle of the Mojave desert as all the grain burns up in the atmosphere, while playin’ a full chorale version of the Ode to Joy- which I’m not, by the by- if you eat dinner with me so I don’t gotta deal with anyone askin’ me how I feel.”

“That is an oddly specific and well thought out scenario for someone who claims they aren’t considering it,” the smile on his lips twitched a little wider.

“I said I wasn’t plannin’ on it, not that I hadn’t considered it,” Kassandra opened her palms and sighed. “Look, I ain’t happy about this, not gonna lie, but I’m a professional, an’ I’ll do what needs to get done. Though I’d be real happy if I didn’t have to set foot planetside.”

“Duly noted, though since you’re the only one who really knows the ins and outs of life and society there, I’m afraid it may be unavoidable. I don’t want to have any faux pas or misunderstandings. So, why aren’t you eager to visit home?”

“Asides from the boredom, the inevitable embarrassment my parents will visit upon me, likely when they try to invite you and everyone I work with to stay on the farmstead?” Kassandra let the turbolift doors hiss open, and politely gestured to the Captain, indicating that he should enter the Tribble first. “Well, sir, goin’ back there, there’s a damn long shadow cast over me. You remember the pop star, Cyril, back twenty something years ago?”

“Uhm, famous for Five Nights On Risa, right? I-”

“You bein’ my CO an all, I’m gonna be nice now an’ tell you that she was my big sis, sos you kin skip the part where you mention you had her holoposter on your wall, an then haveta furiously backpedal and pretend like you had it because you’re a true music lover.”

“I didn’t know she was from Sherman’s Planet, was what I was going to say” Kane redirected wryly, studying her from out of the corner of his eye in the way people always did, trying to see if there was any trace of her sister in her face. “I’m neither confirming nor denying, but why do you assume I had that poster?”

“Were you between 13 and 30 and into women back then? Then you probably had it,” Kassandra couldn’t avoid a quick smirk. “You got no idea how many fights I got inta with other Marines about it. Anyway, don’t blame you fer not knowin’, Cyril musta spent months learnin’ ta wipe Sherman’s Planet outta her speech, one of tha many things we fell out over, I guess. I took it as her bein’ ashamed of where she came from, ashamed a’ me, an’ all. Meanwhile, here am I, her less good lookin’, less talented, hayseed of a sister, who ain’t got no talent for anything but bustin’ noses. So, that’s partially why, cos I ain’t Kassandra Thytos, MCO, hero of the Battle for Earth, general badass an’ cool chick, I’m just Cyril’s little sister, even decades since she passed. Anyway, that’s too much shadow fer me. Not ta mention, it’s the kinda place where people are jus’ too much into everyone else’s business. Ya go there, an people are still bringin’ up gossip bout ya from years ago. Yanno, oh she’s so and so’s daughter, an’ didn’t ya hear they had a spot of trouble with her a few years ago, oh yes, she was caught vandalizin’ ole Mrs McCarthy’s shed. Purely hypothetical example. Nah, it’s a place that really mistakes familiarity with a free pass ta gossip.”

“I’m familiar with the charms of close knit communities. That being so, why don’t you tell me what you weren’t willing to say in front of everyone else earlier.” Kane ordered a sandwich from a replicator, and waited as Kassandra did the same. She frowned at him, wondering what he was trying to get at.

“Sir, I didn’t-”

“You did. I told you, I know the close knit community. I know that you don’t want to badmouth it to outsiders, so you’ll gloss over the unflattering bits.” He smiled tightly at her, seeming to want to convey that he wasn’t casting aspersions on her character.

“I suppose I did. Whaddya wanna know?”

“Well, I think the glaring issue is the Klingons. I got the feeling things aren’t nearly as copacetic as you made out. Are there problems?”

“Not as such. I was mostly tellin’ y’all everything. I guess the big thing would be that there’s a small segment of the Klingons, mostly them that kept themselves as close to pure bred as is possible after 170 years ain’t as thrilled about James T Kirk day, seein’ as it’s basically a celebration of the day their people got beaten and exiled from the empire, not enough to cause trouble, but enough for there to be some grumblin’ every year. An’ sure, they got a bit of a point, I mean, we ain’t prejudiced, but we are, if that makes sense. Klingon an’ a Human get in a fight, the Klingon’s liable to be the one assumed to have started it, an’ most of them work for Human families, stead of havin’ their own farms, since the Humans pretty much divvied up the land before they were integrated, so them that have farms and haven’t married into Human families tend to have the less desirable soils. But I wouldn’t think any trouble would be brewin’. God help me fer suggestin’ this sir, cos I kinda feel as though I’m feedin’ ya to the lions, but if you want the DL on Sherman’s planet, politics, an’ even just general gossip, Momma Thytos is the one ta ask.”

“Feeding me to lions, Major?” He took a delicate bite out of his sandwich, raising an eyebrow again.

“You think I’m a piece a work? Momma Thytos is like a force a nature. Ain’t no stoppin’ her when she sets her mind to somethin’, but she’s useful. Just three rules fer dealin’ with her- One, don’t ever mention you ain’t married, unless you want to meet every eligible bachelorette on the planet; Two, don’t ever finish what’s on yer plate if she feeds ya, or you’re gonna be given second helpin’s till you puke; Three, an this is the most important part, don’t ever *ever* tell her she can’t do somethin’. An’ maybe also don’t look her in the eyes if yer gonna bullshit her. So four rules.”

“I see. I’ll keep that in mind should I ever have the…” Kane paused, and diplomatically passed over the original word her tirade had elicited. “Pleasure of making your mother’s acquaintance.”

“You kin laugh at me all ya want, but you’ll prolly see what I mean, Sir.” Kassandra popped the last of her sandwich into her mouth and stood up. “I’ll be around if you want any more insights. Or to hear the very long and very borin’ history of Triticale.”

* * * =(/\)=* * *

Scene: Engineering

“First thing I’m going to do is take you to get candy tribbles, it’s a speciality for festivals, it’s basically spun triticale syrup, that’s been made to look like a tribble, it’s delicious!” Asta was chattering away at Lynette as they worked on their section of warp drive alignment.

“Isn’t that basically… Cotton candy?” Lynette asked around the edges of the spanner she had held in her mouth.

“Well, kinda, but it looks just like a tribble, and they don’t flavor it like cotton candy, it’s some sort of caramel flavor with a little bit of some sort of local root added in. They also have Tribble cake, which is like a beignet but a shaggy to make it look like a tribble, and filled with raspberry jam-”

“That’s kinda… Morbid if you think about it…” Lynette glanced up to to see if Argo was prowling around ready to pounce and tell them off. “Is *everything* tribble themed?”

“Well, it is to commemorate James T Kirk saving the colony from poisoned triticale, and thus allowing the Federation to claim Sherman’s planet. So yeah, a lot of Tribbles. And James T Kirk impersonator contests. And carnival games. Come on, it’ll be fun!"

* * *=(/\)=* * *

NRPG: Just a little bit to get us rolling, a bit.

Alix Fowler
Kassandra Thytos
USS Phoenix


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