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[sb118-constitution] PNPC Ensign Paku & ESPO - They did Free Bird

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(( USS Constitution - Main Holodeck 01 ))

::Ensign Paku couldn’t shake the feeling of imminent death. Of course, that was a constant in his life. A prey species that is biologically determined to sense impending danger and death in an environment where danger and death were all around them meant his threat ganglia had been working overtime since he’d been accepted into Starfleet Academy. That Paku was, perhaps, slightly more anxious and hypersensitive than the average Kelpien had nothing to do with it.::

::The fact that his superior officer, little more than a child in the Kelpien’s eyes, was installing military-grade tech into an explorer vessel was likely the cause. His threat ganglia twitched and danced all afternoon.::

::After testing the Faust Control Unit and running a series of diagnostics, they were just finishing up and packing it in. Paku was already fantasizing about returning to his quarters where he had the environmental controls and lighting set just right to simulate subterranean Kelpia, when Lieutenant Choi got a call.::

Sindri: =/\= Sindri to Choi? =/\=

::His threat ganglia had just started to relax and retreat, but at the chilling sound of the voice they shot out again. Lieutenant Choi seemed… put off by the voice, but not terrified like he should. Paku tried to wave to get his attention. Cut communications. Run.::

Choi: =/\= Choi here, Lieutenant. =/\=

Sindri: =/\= I’m looking for the vermin that usually inhabit this dank office of yours… I got them a customer. =/\=

::Ensign Frag, the obnoxious, filthy Tellarite, leaned in close to Choi’s communicator.::

Frag: =/\= You promised you’d stop calling Little Dag a customer! He’s a valued member of the crew, Sindri, no matter how short he is! =/\=

Choi: ::sighing:: =/\= We’re just finishing up some work on the holodeck, Lieutenant, we can be down in ESPO within an hour or so. =/\=

Sindri: =/\= Nice… playing nerd games on company time? You think maybe some actual work might be squeezed into your busy schedule? =/\=

Paku: Lieutenant, we need to call security.

::Choi turned to him, raising an eyebrow.::

Choi: Security?! Why?

Paku: Something… bad is happening… or is going to happen. I’m undecided.

Frag: ::grumbling:: Isn’t that Kelpia’s planetary motto?

::Lieutenant Choi stared at Frag, then Paku, looking exhausted. He hit his communicator, reopening the channel to this Lieutenant.::

Choi: =/\= Lieutenant, we’re going to be awhile packing up and submitting documentation to Starfleet R&D. =/\=

Tor: =/\= We’re also not a repair shop. If someone has a maintenance request they ca- - =/\=

::Lieutenant Choi waved his hands furiously at the J’Naii.::

Sindri: =/\= Well, I can wait a few more moments I suppose if you think you’re going to be done? Otherwise we can come back later. =/\=

Choi: =/\= Probably better to just come back, sorry for the bother. Choi out. =/\=

Frag: That was a little too civil for Dag… something’s up…

::Paku’s eyes went wide as he stared at the Tellarite.::

Paku: I’m going to have to agree with Ensign Frag.

Tor: ::muttering:: I suppose there’s a first time for everything…

Frag: ::decided:: He must be leaving me chocolates and flowers! That old romantic!

::Paku braced himself against the wall, threat ganglia twitching aggressively. All he wanted to do was save everyone from a violent demise… was that so much to ask?::

(( Brief Timeskip - ESPO ))

::If Paku’s threat ganglia were twitching before they’d returned to ESPO, they were practically standing up straight out and thrashing as they entered the Constitution’s office. Something was very, very wrong. Over the usual, overwhelming scent of computer parts and Frag’s body odour, there was another smell, something organic and chemical, that Paku couldn’t trace. No one else seemed to notice it even after he’d pointed it out.::

::The Kelpien sat down at his console and immediately began to sanitize everything, as usual, while the others filed their end of duty reports. That’s when things got weird. He felt a hand run over his head and he leapt out of his seat to see Ensign Tor standing behind him, a weird grin on their face, their eyes out of focus.::

Tor: ::laughing:: Who let this big bald kitty in here? Here kitty-kitty…

::Paku backed up against the console and began to move his way around the corner, away from the Ensign, threat ganglia flopping around in terror. He glanced around the corner where he saw that Frag was sitting on the floor and starring at her hands.::

Frag: I can see the entire history of the universe in my palms… and the future, too… wow… I look great in green…

Paku: Ensign? What in the name of- -

Frag: ::looking up at him, terrified:: Are you Hovah? What happened to all your hair? Do you want me to shave? Is that what you’re telling me, sweet merciful Hovah?

::Frag began to cry.::

::Paku glanced over her to see the Bynars dancing, although no music was playing, at least not out loud. He’d never seen them move in that way. They were actually… really good. Lieutenant Choi was nowhere to be found, he’d likely, maybe mercifully, returned to his R&D lab.::

::Paku sighed. This was just like the Starbase 104 Festival of Gratitude all over again. Why did no one ever listen to him? He reached into the sanitation kit he always wore on his hip and handed a pair of gloves to Tor.::

Paku: You can pet the kitty if you wear these medical grade sanitary gloves.

::This did the trick. Tor seemed to loose all interest in him and instead was transported by the material.::

Tor: So shiny.

::Frag continued to sob and whisper prayers to sweet merciful Hovah about how she didn’t want to shave her proud purple mane, before switching at a moment’s notice to a need to satisfy her “munchies.” The Bynars kept dancing.::

::Paku’s threat ganglia finally retreated and he sat down at his console, finishing up with the sanitation wipes, before he pulled up the security logs. A Lieutenant Dag Sindri and Cadet 4th Class Kaith had entered and then promptly left, and nothing had been accessed save a single file on Paku’s console, which had been deleted. He pulled up the deleted file’s cache and restored it, hoping it would help make sense of the situation.::

::Two men were shown in a crowded room, arms slung over one another. One of them was shirtless and wearing a hat shaped like a humanoid mammary that read, “Risa or bust!” although if this had any significance it was lost on the Kelpien. They each swayed violently, clutching huge glasses of amber liquid. They were screaming some sort of ancient chant, or invocation, that was earsplitting in its volume and intensity. “If I staaaaaayed here with you giiiiiiiiiiiirl… things just couldn’t beeeeeeeee the saaaaaaaaame…” The crowd booed and threw various foodstuffs. Perhaps this was some sort of pagan ritual?::

::Paku shuddered and deleted the file, making sure to clear all caches related to it. This was something better left unseen. He turned back to Frag, who was struggling with the industrial replicator to override the settings to give her a “big frakkin’ pizza,” while Tor rubbed the medical gloves against their face, cooing. The Bynars danced. Paku sighed. No one ever listened to him…::

END

The Engineering Systems Programming Office PNPCs
Ensign Frag, Ensign Paku, Ensign Tor and Crewmen Ix & Te

As simmed by:

Lieutenant (JG) Choi Ji-hu
Engineering Officer
USS Constitution-B
C239402CJ0

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