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Doctor Reichart, I presume?

Posted on Tue Jan 10th, 2017 @ 9:06pm by Lieutenant Commander Janik Reichart
Edited on on Tue Jan 10th, 2017 @ 11:48pm

Mission: Episode 1: Border Patrol
Timeline: November 16 2392, 1230 Hours; MD 02

The place was called Joe Spuckies. It was the kind of establishment that, despite it’s odd name, tried to emulate an old English tavern. It had the large bar in the center of the room that was made of cheap polymer material that was meant to look like oak, but wasn’t. The brass ornamentation was real, but in an effort to drive home the old English tavern theme someone went too far in its use. The stuff gleamed everywhere in the form of banisters, spittoons (not used, of course), and decorative door handles. As if mocking the lousy attempt to create an old English tavern, a 1950’s style jukebox with neon sat in one corner of the room. It was cranking out Elvis Presley’s “Blue Suede Shoes” to a lunch crowd that was seemed oblivious.

Janik was not entirely sure how he ended up in Joe Spuckies. It had been the first place he had seen after entering the commercial district of Starbase 400. The trip on the civilian transport had been a rough one. In addition to being billeted aboard a civilian transport, he had been assigned a dual use cabin with a Pakled accountant (yes, they existed) who was more than happy to talk about anything. And talk he did…for three straight days and nights.

Lifting the glass of synthetic Jameson whiskey, Janik shot it back and he slapped the shot glass down onto the worn bar top.

“Marines,” he continued. “How did I end up aboard a ship full of marines? I am the recipient of the Solkar Prize for Subspace Mechanics for crying out loud.”

“Do you have a problem with the Marine Corps?” the barkeep called back.

The barkeep was an Efrosian, his telltale white hair and Fu-Manchu mustache an easy give away. He wore rounded glasses that were darkened to protect his eyes, and he was busy cleaning a glass with a bar towel. In another laughable attempt to remind any oblivious patrons of Joe Spuckies that it was trying to recreate an old English tavern he wore a collared shirt and bow tie.

“No,” Janik said at once. “But I am a scientist. What is a science officer going to do on a ship designed for operations involving the Marine Corps?”

The Efrosian paused from wiping the same glass he had been cleaning for the last twenty minutes. He then gave a shrug. “Science stuff?”

Seeing that he was not going to get any sympathy from the barkeep, Janik frowned. “Ha. Ha,” he shot back. “You know…. I’m beginning to think you’re not Joe Spuckie.”

It was a dig and the Efrosian, who had clearly worked among humans long enough, was not oblivious to the act of sarcasm. He grabbed Janik’s whiskey glass and he jabbed his thumb toward the exit. “You are done here. Take your negativity and ruin peoples’ lunch someplace else.”

Janik paused and he looked around the nearly empty bar. In the corner two civilians were eating their lunch, and a very bored looking Tellarite was attempting to make sense out of the dart board attached to the wall. The jukebox had moved on from Elvis to the Big Bopper.

“I don’t think anyone here really….”

The Efrosian placed his hands on the bartop and he looked Janik directly into his eyes. “Out!”

“I have to report to my ship anyway,” Janik said. He retrieved his credit tile and he waved it front of one of the pay receivers attached to the bar top. “See you around, Joe.”

The Efrosian’s lips curled angrily, but Janik had already propelled himself toward the door with his duffel bag in tow. In addition to having been sent to what he was sure was the wrong posting, spending three days with a jabbering Efrosian, and being served lousy synthale by an angry Efrosian he was sure this day could not get any worse.

Lost in thought, Janik ignored the crowd of Starfleet personnel and civilians that were ogling the USS Devonshire from of the gigantic viewing windows outside of her berth. He could never understand why people of nearly all races liked to stare at starships. To him they were only as good as the science labs, and anything less was barely worth noticing. It was a sentiment that was shared by many of his Vulcan associates.

So intense was Janik’s thoughts concerning what kind of science staff he was going to find aboard the Devonshire, that he barely recognized the security officer standing at the gangplank. He had reached into his pocket and he had handed the officer his PADD with his transfer orders. Having assumed everything was in order he grabbed the PADD with the pretense of walking up the gangplank. The only problem was that the officer did not let go of the PADD.

“Sorry, Lieutenant Commander,” the officer said in a firm voice. “I need to inform you that you need to report to the commanding officer first.”

“I know that, Ensign,” Janik answered. He seemed surprised at the officer’s need to state the obvious. “I’ve been on a starship before. I will see him when I check out my quarters and what passes as a science department.”

The ensign drew in a breath which he let out with a soft sigh. “Commodore Cantos has asked for you to report him on the double, Sir. I can have your belongings taken to your quarters.”

This was odd, Janik thought. He let the ensign take his duffel bag. “Why does he want to see me right away?”

“I dunno, but your ETA timestamp on your orders was for an arrival date of yesterday,” the ensign said. “That could be it.”

“The Starfleet Bureau of Personnel made the orders. Blame BUPERS, not me,” Janik answered. He pointed at the ship beyond the gangplank. “And this ship doesn’t seem to be going anywhere in big hurry, Ensign.”

The ensign gave Janik that familiar look he had seen from other personnel from previous postings. It was the look that said “we have another odd ball science officer” aboard ship.

“I’ll let the Commodore know you are aboard, Sir,” the ensign said at last. He then smirked. “Welcome aboard.”

 

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