>> Star Trek fan fiction >> Ships of the Fleet: Anthology >> The Captain's Revenge
(Insert a bunch of worthless letters here that denote something important)
(Enclosed is some hopefully funny racial slander involving leadership, star fleet awfulcurs, and disposable people. It also happens to be realistic of how awfulcurs in the real world see their crews. Yes, it is completely autobiographical - only the names have been changed to avoid slanderous charges and lawsuits- but the situations are 100% real- author, Rear Admiral "No I won't take it in the rump" Larry Trail)
Thirty five years have passed since a young ensign "Red Shirt" had graduated from Star Fleet Academy. His (Lack of) leadership skills and inability to get along with other people had let him lead by example from the very bottom of any class at the Academy. Eligible for retirement 5 years before, the good, but now Captain "red shirt" Smith had been left in command of the Ptolemy Class Tug named the USS Reduire (French word meaning "retard" or "slow" depending on the context) due to the fact that nobody wanted to take command of a ship that was completely worn out some 100 years before. The only reason why the Ptolemy Class- the last in her class built, avoided wars, being scrapped or shot at too severely is due to blind luck- the ship was always located in the wrong place at the wrong time. Or the wrong quadrant, with the wrong crew, or engine troubles or some off the wall reason- such as when one of the Chief Engineers went insane and started breeding tribbles for their hides, which really wasn't a problem until his collection was drying out in the corridors of the ship and began to rot. We find our intrepid Captain counting days on an old style paper calendar that has been attached by phaser welded spring clips to the wall. The scorch marks and burnt paint indicate this to even the dumbest and most dimwitted dolt of the fleet.
"Now that I am going to retire" Red Shirt said "I am no longer the dumbest and most dimwitted dolt in the fleet!" Pausing to catch his breath as he spray painted a huge red "X" on the very large wall calendar.
"In 5 more days I'll be away from the Neutral Zone, my bags are packed, the crew is ready to disembark and the ships going to become a museum ship. Life is nicer when all you have to do is relax, pull lint out of your navel and put it in someone's drink you don't like" Whistling tunelessly to himself while adjusting his tunic and pretending to care about the 234 crew people entrusted to his care Smith left his quarters.
Entering the ancient turbolift and listening to the familiar squeaks and grunts of tortured metal on its last legs of operation the lift shuddered in its typical fashion of groans as it struggled up the 5 decks from the captains quarters to the bridge.
"RED ALERT! RED ALERT! ALL HANDS TO GENERAL QUARTERS! RED ALERT! RED ALERT!"
"The hell it is! I'm going to retire in 5 days, the ships going to be a museum- a monument to people on how not to live their life. I'm going to breakfast, the Xo can deal with the training drill"
"THIS IS THE FIRST OFFICER- THIS IS NOT, I REPEAT, NOT A DRILL" the familiar loudspeaker screamed.
Taking a deep breath, then sighing with the resignation that only comes from knowing something really great- retiring- was about ready to go bad- called death- Red Shirt glared at the comm. panel and snarled "Computer, reroute to the bridge- who knows it might be important."
Exiting the turbolift while listening to the reverse groans and squeaks of lifts car Captain Red Shirt Smith surveyed the scene.
"Executive Officer, I have the bridge" Smith bellowed as he entered the bridge.
"I stand relieved" with the formalities exchanged, First Officer Samuel Jorgensen gave everyone a huge smile of relief. "Situation is as follows- we have unknown vessels attacking what appears to be a civilian registered starship."
"Oh that's fine then- just so long as it's not a Federation ship we won't have to worry about it." Smith smiled "We protect our own, and we do not do things that might result in an interstellar war- such things aren't good for promotional fast track or living long enough to retire." Looking around the bridge Smith asked out loud "We don't have starting an interstellar war on our to do list do we? It'd be rude to not take this opportunity to start one if it's on the list." Several bridge officers started rubbing their chins and scratching their heads in a thoughtful thinking way...finally Helmsman Lt. Monitor spoke up saying "No Sir, starting an interstellar war isn't on our 'to do' list. Sir".
"Are you sure, Monitor?" Smith said seriously "We haven't been shot at in quite a while. Why not check and make sure." The gleam in Monitors eye of taking an antique starship into modern combat with an unknown race showed that he was on the fast track for promotion. Or slightly insane- such as raising tribbles in such a way as to market the hides on third world planets without replicators.
Jorgensen cleared his throat to get the Captains attention. "Sir, the starship is a small 80,000 ton 'S' class freighter that is Federation registered to Earth. By law we must investigate." Jorgensen shrugged helplessly while looking up from the personnel bridge viewer located at the science station "The freighters engines... oh no!" His voice trailed off as a bright flash of light overloaded the view screen which blacked out from the flash then restored the scene once the bright light had died down.
The small 'S' class freighter's engines had been sheared off resulting in the emergency jettisoning of the antimatter reactor and containment. The warp coils neatly cut floated in space in one direction while the rest of the ship tumbled end over end. The unknown attackers turned neatly over to return to the direction they were from without a backwards glance. "Jorgie, did anyone survive?" Captain Red Shirt Smith asked, saddened at the overwhelming quantity of paperwork and reports he would have to write and send to star fleet command. "I'm looking now captain to see if there are any survivors" the First Officer said, carefully avoiding giving his captain a baleful stare. "It's possible they may have survived- the impulse reactors seem to be operating normally which means the inertial dampeners held. I believe we should send over a search party to see what we can find."
Captain Smith looked up at all the expectant faces hoping each would be selected for the away team. Clearing his throat, and adjusting his tunic to look more professional after remembering there would at least be a hearing over the sensor logs of what had happened Smith decided to be far more serious.
"First Officer Jorgenson, you will lead the away team. You may take as many people and who you think will do the best job of answering the questions that will be coming up. I suggest you take a doctor, an assistant engineer, and 3 each red shirted security people, then have a second away team of medics and more engineering personnel to support as required."
Jorgenson didn't miss a beat "Sir, I request Dr. Scotch, assistant engineer Jones, 3 ah... Security personnel and one guest star. I mean" clearing his throat and repeating himself "I mean Ensign Guess Starr. Plus I'll have each person issued a phaser rifle, and 3 power packs just in case."
Nodding in approval Captain Smith smiled "Good... very good. If we find the attackers and kill them all that should prevent the interstellar incident we want to avoid because dead people tell no tales."
Assembling in the transporter the first team arrived heavily armed complete with battle armor. "Sir, the rescue mission is ready to beam over" and having said that, First Officer Jorgenson racked the magazine power pack in and clicked off the safety with a loud SNAP! Taking place on the transporter pads, with the kind of silly grin that children have when pooping their pants for the first time and thinking it's a good thing..."ENERGIZE!"
With a sparkle of energy and the hum of electronics the first away team disappeared...
...and reassembled on the 'S' class freighters bridge in combat mode. Each phaser rifle held straight out by a person with their safety off and finger on the trigger. Jorgenson tapped his com badge "Reduire- successful beam over, no bad guys in sight" he said in a sad, mournful tone "We'll keep looking for bad gu- er, I mean survivors. Jorgenson out". Turning to the away team "Follow me- and this time, since I'm leading from the front and not following you all phasers are to be on 'safe'. Remember, killing the First Officer is not only a career limiting thing to do, but is also a court martial offence." Looking carefully at each team member in the eye "Also, if I survive the phaser blast I'm going to use your personal phaser rifle as a club and do my very best to beat your ass senseless. I've told you in spite of what's written on the bathroom walls I do NOT enjoy pain" pausing "most of the time, anyway- now follow me"
Emergency lights flickered in the semi-darkness of debris strewn in the emergency ladder access and corridor. Crewman Stephenson used his battle tricorder's GPS system to lead the way with two other nameless disposable gorms flanked him on either side. Wandering aimlessly through the corridors and shooting at most shadows thinking there was a hidden enemy the away team finally made contact. Phaser blasts, the screams and cursing of the dying, the taunting insults in English finally convinced each side they had actually encountered the other away team. A cease fire- after a fashion- was finally accomplished. Calling the Reduire Jorgenson made his report "Captain, we made hostile contact which turned out to be the other away team. We have 12 sets of fecal filled pants and underwear, and one slightly burned index finger when one of the nameless faceless gorms touched the edges of a 6 foot blasted hole in the bulkhead. I kissed it, so the owie would go away and told him to see the doctor."
Doctor "Pie Eyed" Owl of the Fugawi tribe glared at the First Officer. "You Sir, are not certified to practice medicine!" Kissing the very slight burn then swatting the gorm on the butt lightly "Now grab your rifle and get out there and play. Your pep talk is LEADERSHIP BY EXAMPLE!" The faceless nameless gorm glared at the good doctor snarling about animals with feathers and quacks. Picking up his phaser rifle and flicking the switch to the "On/Kill" setting the gorm considered shooting the doctor. Fortunately the gorm realized that while the doctors skills were questionable at best he realized the doctor did control the source of all prescription pain meds used for recreational use. Stomping back to the left flank the gorm took point and the team continued its mission of finding bad gu- er, survivors.
"Well" Jorgenson said out loud thoughtfully to himself "This is turning into a great team building exercise!"
Finally reaching the emergency bridge, dimly lit with a broken pipe in the background partially covering the door a woman was found slumped over the emergency controls. Gently, almost lovingly, overcoming the urge to strangle her First Officer Jorgenson turn her in the chair she was sitting in. "Ma'm- are you all right?" Her eyes began to focus and finally settled on Jorgensen's chest looking for his ships insigna.
"Ma'm, we're from the Reduire - what happened? How do you feel?" Doctor Owl scanned her carefully. "Sir, she's in a state of shock, go easy on her."
"Ship...ship was attacked by those things!" Jorgenson patently waited for her to continue, then asked "Ma'm- where's your crew?"
"Crew? Oh I had to beam them down! I beamed them down to the 4th planet"
"Ma'm, there is no 4th planet"
"There was, but not any more! Oh, I had to beam them down, oh we were dead- no power, the Captains the last to stay behind right? Then we took another hit and the transporter went out. Then they were down there and I was left up here" pausing and sobbing both badly and theatrically "All 40 of them- they called me and begged me to save them and I couldn't... I just couldn't... especially with my second husband down there... it was so much cheaper this way than to have a divorce attorney..."
Jorgenson vaguely remembered one of the gorms name as "Washburn". "Washburn, pull the ships duplicate log and beam them back to the Reduire." Tapping his com badge "Jorgenson to Reduire- we've found one survivor and we're pulling the ships duplicate log from the emergency bridge to beam over to you. We'll continue to search the ship for survivors, and other evidence/valuable collectables to bring back to the ship for the mandatory insurance hearing"
Scouring the ship and finding several hundred kilo's of platinum, gold, silver, and gold pressed latinium and reporting only 75 kilos of each the away party's beamed back.
"Good haul, Number One! There's some great evidence here for the insurance companys, so they can re-reimburse the owners for their losses. Too bad the explosive decompression destroyed both medicines that would have given every one in the Federation eternal youth and cure all diseases, but I guess we can't have everything!"
Entering sickbay, Captain "RS" looked around observing misplaced items, and the general untidiness that only comes from being over worked and underpaid. Or generally laziness- after all, a starship functions on a daily bases with hundreds if not thousands of documents explaining in boring excruciating detail how NOT TO GET HURT.
Over the one filled biobed the monitors hummed blinking lights and showing displays of the one survivor of the ship.
They both recognized each other at the same time- the Captain drawing his phaser set to heavy stun and the Captain of the 'S' class freighter. The hidden scalpel that had been stolen from the wall display sailed through the air cutting into the upper right bicep of his arm as Smith pulled the trigger stunning Dr. Owl's one and only patient. Dr. Owl ran over to the Captain to examine the injury. "Here- take off your shirt" as the blood soaked shirt smeared massive amounts of blood all over the walls the deck the doctor from the cut artery "You're dammed lucky this happened here- on an away team you'd have died by now". Nurse Prayerlocation was glaring at the Captain while treating the patient in the bed and through gritted teeth managed to say "Its considered to be in bad form to heavily stun a patient in sickbay, Captain".
Returning her glare, snarling "You're absolutely right- I should reset the phaser to disintegrate so there wouldn't be a body found. Move out of the way." having said that the Captain pulled his phaser and redid the settings while cursing the pain and Dr. Owl for being underfoot. "Get out of my way- I can complete this now".
Grabbing the phaser and aiming it at the ceiling safely Dr. Owl yelled "NOT IN MY SICKBAY- AND CERTAINLY NOT AT MY PATIENT! Its in bad form for patients to die by phaser fire in a sickbed." Pausing to catch his breath and speaking in low, dulcet tones to defuse the situation and ease the tension Dr. Owl gently asked "Captain, why the hostility towards this woman? I mean you're obviously very angry and hurt- want to talk about it? How about we talk about it even if you don't want to talk about it ok?"
Glaring balefully at everyone in sickbay. "This, dear doctor, this vile and ugly creature was a woman I was married to once upon a time- this... this vile ugly thing is my first wife. Her name is Miscreantia Cucllus. With no socially redeeming value except as a disposable male sex toy who's word is only to be trusted as far as the ability to throw starships across galaxies by amoeba's. Not only that but she did the one unforgivable thing" Looking for the first time at Captain Smith with understanding, then nodding. "She's the one who broke your heart, stole your money, and then stole the children for parts unknown. No wonder you're madder than hell!" Biting his tongue till it bled, and wiping his eyes with the fresh pain of his heart ripped open again after 33 years, 9 months, and 22 days Smith simply said "If you need me, I'll be in my quarters." and with that he turned and left.
Taking a deep pull from the Brandy, Smith looked at the wedding album. She was young- we were both young then- him in his Star Fleet Uniform, her in her favorite dress. Swishing the brandy around in his mouth then letting it pour slowly down his throat, enjoying the burning sensation of the alcohol. "Report number one- what's the current status?" Jorgenson's voice came across the intercom "Sir situation is as follows- the Melville is the name of the freighter. Or what's left of it anyway- we did grab her records and her wall plaque to return to the Federation. The ship- what's left of it anyway- is pretty much a complete insurance write off. I'm suggesting we leave a marker buoy per regulations for the insurance company's to examine the wreckage. Our guest in sickbay has been requesting to see you but based on her current attitude I've given orders for her to be strapped to the biobed or be sedated."
Pouring more brandy and swirling it around in his snifter, Smith responded with a slightly drunk "Fine Number one,,,,that's very good indeed. Please make it so". Staggering to his feet and swaying lightly, Smith made his way down to sickbay.
"DOCTOR, I NEED TO GO BACK TO MY SHIP!" Captain Miscreantia Cucllus screamed "I AM IN COMMAND AND I MUST GO BACK TO MY SHIP- NOW!"
Good doctor Owl just smiled a patronizing smile "Why of course you can go back to your ship! Wouldn't have it any other way- after all, you're the Captain and the Captain always goes down with their ship right? Your warp cores been ejected, your warp coil assembly has been neatly sliced away, your ship is down to emergency power- when would you like to be beamed back to die all alone as your ship crumbles around you?" Hearing the sickbay door opening then turning to see a slightly drunk Captain Smith in the doorway,,,,"Did you hear all that, Captain? She wants to go back to her ship!" Giggling as if told a very funny dirty joke Smith cracked up "Of course we shall return her if that's her desire! Tell her she can get off her ass and walk over without a suit on! Short hop- about 25000 kilometers- not far in a suit, but a long walk in unprotected space with massive amounts of radiation coming out of the reactors" Miscreantia's face became pale as the words sank in with the blood draining out of her face "What do you mean?"
Sitting on a chair, giggling Smith continued "I mean exactly what I mean- your ship is pretty much a worthless cut up radioactive hulk. You survived, there will be a court of inquiry into your actions of negligence and you will probably be found liable in the deaths of 40 of your crew. While I'm very sorry that those innocent people died- and I don't know who or why you made that unknown race so angry- you can explain that to the official courts- its nice to see you get what you so richly deserve!" By this time Captain James "Disposable Red Shirt" Smith was laughing so hard, farting and crying at the same time.
"BUT" Smith said while all of a sudden becoming very serious "You're right- you do have the right under regulations to return to your vessel as you deem fit. So which is better- to die, alone, in space on a radioactive hulk of a ship or to die, alone, in a prison colony?" pausing and grinning as only a slightly giggling drunk can do then saying in a conspiratorial whisper "Personally I'd rather beam you over to the hulk. To let you die, alone, away from your family you'll never see again? How fitting to make up for the way you broke my heart so many years ago." Grinning, knowing that either answer she gave would be both right and wrong, Captain Smith left the sickbay to make his report....."Just think! 4 more days to retirement now!"
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