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Commander Saveron: Zen and the art of Tribble Hybridisation


Saveron
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((Transient Quarters, Starbase 104))

Bakewell: So, how’d it go?

::Professor Ramsey Bakewell, pre-eminent Federation Xenosociologist asked as he stuck his feet into a pair of old carpet slippers and lowered himself into the old leather chair with it’s prolapsed stuffing.::

Saveron: They were… unexpectedly disinterested.

::The simple console in the Starfleet transient quarters did at least have a direct link to the station’s subspace hub; the signal quality was excellent even this far out.::

Bakewell: It’s the other side of the Empire for them; the Klingons on that border are probably more concerned about the Tholians than the Romulans.

::The salty-haired academic opined as he swivelling his chair around, his face lit by the screen in front of him, in the otherwise dim and cosy study. Two items were laid on the green leather of the desk; a steaming mug presumably full of coffee, and a tribble.::

Saveron: The cultural comparison suggests distinct commonalities and certain lines of approach, but the issue of Klingon aggression towards what remains of the Romulan Star Empire appears to have no simple solution.

::Long fingers curled around the Vulcan’s cup of theris-masu.::

Bakewell: Someone would have solved it already if it did. ::He observed, taking a swig of his coffee and absent-mindedly putting it down on to of a PADD.:: How’s Desideratum?

::The Vulcan quirked one upswung brow before reaching under the desk and producing a small carry cage. From inside it he took his own tribble; this one had long, white hair that trailed behind it as it ambulated gently across the desk.::

Saveron: As you may observe, Fluffy is in adequate health. ::He replied, as though the shift from interstellar politics to tribbles was nothing unusual.::

::In the case of his erstwhile PhD supervisor, it wasn’t. Bakewell gave him a flat look.::

Bakewell: If I’ve told you once, I’ve told you a million times. FCXR Moonbeam Desideratum is a highly hybridised show tribble with a distinguished pedigree; you can’t call it ‘Fluffy’.

::He pointed at Saveron via the screen with a pair of fine tweezers and a scowl.::

Saveron: One would suggest that the truth of the matter is that one has already done so. ::He observed dryly.:: I recall that it has a disqualification registered.

Bakewell: It would be a champion if it didn’t. Has it still got the spot?

::Saveron obligingly picked up the White Angora tribble and turned it over, displaying the small black patch of fur which was the source of it’s show disqualification whilst Ramsey studied it critically, before putting it down again.::

Bakewell: More’s the pity. ::He muttered.:: I’ve never bred another Angora White that close. Nor has anyone else. Take this now. ::He gestured to the ball of fluff in front of him.:: Lucky if it’s got two thirds the length on Desideratum, I had it shipped in from another hybridiser and it’s a good job I practice strict quarantine on imports; it’s got the Antaran Mange.

::He grumbled, picking at the tribble’s fur with the tweezers. It was coming out in clumps.::

Saveron: One believes that is a notifiable disease. ::The Vulcan observed.::

Bakewell: You bet it is, and I’m hoping to cure it before it has to be destroyed. Tahla would have a fit, but Iklis is going to lose his stock over this.

::He rattled off first names, assuming Saveron was up on the great hybridisers of show tribbles because that was what was important in life. Shrin’Tahla zh’Aim was an Andorian news reporter known for her scathing sports coverage; Antaravan Iklis a Bajoran archaeologist who specialised in relics associated with Pah Wraith cults. And Ramsey Bakewell advised Federation diplomats.::

Saveron: One would suggest that prevention of an epidemic is of greater importance than preservation of the line.

Bakewell: That’s because you’re a doctor. ::He replied, not looking up from the sick tribble.:: You have to care about that sort of stuff, it’s in the rules somewhere. Now me, I’m a sociologist, so I understand the importance of the tribble.

::A small tube of cream appeared, and Bakewell began applying the contents to the tribble’s bare patches wiht a cotton bud.::

Saveron: Such may not be obvious to everyone. ::He suggested blandly.::

Bakewell: Of course not. I wouldn’t have a job if it was. ::His rather sad-looking tribble started to coo under his gentle ministrations.:: But the tribble really is the perfect, simple model of all living things. It breathes, it eats, it poops, and it replicates. That’s what life comes down to. Resources in, waste and more life out. All the drives boil down to that.

Saveron: No mention of sentience, culture, complex behaviour?

Bakewell: Froth on the coffee. ::He waved a hand dismissively.:: Take your Klingons. They’re getting some resource from preying on the Romulans - probably space and easy access to already mined metals. If you want them to stop, they need some reason not to, either another source or some strong discouragement. Or they could be removing a perceived danger; Romulans have never liked Klingons. Neither do tribbles.

Saveron: They did evolve in Klingon space.

Bakewell: Right, so natural anti-predator response. And they have one complex behaviour that no one really understands.

::Right on cue Fluffy, Saveron’s tribble, started to sing.::

Saveron: Indeed. ::He replied dryly.:: So you would suggest that if one would understand more complex life forms, one might first study tribbles.

Bakewell: Exactly. You can learn a lot from tribbles. And if you feel you understand them, try cats. Because no one understands cats.

END

 

Commander Saveron

Diplomatic Officer

USS Constitution-B

R238802S10

 

Posted 27 March 2017

Edited by Saveron
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