Doc: Oh my gosh this is good. Cook you outdid yourself yet again.
Riasi: These are ... burger veggies?
Doc: Yes. And relax, you can eat them. They're infused with heme.
Riasi: I'm relaxed.
Doc: Whenever you get scared of something new you mix up your grammar. Besides this being an obligate carnivore is Lurran cultural identity, not biology. Otherwise how could you eat the buns your 'cheezburgrz' come on?
Riasi: I don't up mix the grammar when I scared gots! And I don't says ‘cheezburgrz’ like that. I says cheezburgrrrrs.
Doc: Sorry. Try it, honey kit. I tested it six different ways. Cook has reformulated it just for you. This could be a big deal for your people.
Riasi: Nnnnnnngh. It's good. It's very good. Thank you Cook.
Cook: I was worried for a minute.
Doc: I wasn’t. You have as much schooling as I do.
Cook: Well Doc, if you screw up you lose a patient. I could poison a whole crew.
Riasi: More? Puhleeze?
Doc: You’re done already?
Cook: I put so much heme in that burger it was practically mooing. My next feat will be providing something for Professor Mukh to eat that he will prefer to our dwindling supply of chinchillas.
Doc: Luck with that. He’s downright picky when the food isn’t moving.
Cook: I’ll work something out … maybe with popcorn.
I was born to the dead time of ossified stars and lived on scraps of Hawking rads for eons untold. My thoughts crawled while the last of the galaxies sputtered and died until the wormhole open to this stelliferous time.
I was in a time of stars, of energy, of minds and I hungered to eat it all. First though, the cluster of minds in a metal shell traveling nearby beckoned to me.
Nok: So. Did you decide?
M’Ffe: Don’t rush me.
Nok: But …
M’Ffe: Oh, the sex is great. Always was.
M’Ffe: But it doesn’t make us compatible necessarily. I can understand if you don’t want to anymore … though it might seem like blackmail to make me rescind our divorce.
Nok: Never blackmail. Think … bribe.
L’Rre: Voivoi! Nama? Xeche?
M’Ffe: We’re copulating dear. Stay outside please.
Nok: Yes. Out.
L’Rre: /Dad, mom … there is an evil .../
M’Ffe: /Out. Of. Our. Heads. Now./
Nok: /I hate when she group calls … We told you not to do this without warning. The last time it was monsters under your bed … what vole is scared of the dark?! Go to sleep or go for a walk. Mmmmm sexsexsexsexsexsex ....
L’Rre: /We will talk about this later parents. Once your loins settle down. By the way mother, you are pregnant./
L’Rre: /Later, old ones!/
Nok: I’m going to kill her.
M’Ffe: Race you. But finish here first.
I want to gloat to all the losers who will not be born to plague me for a trillion years. I’m not sure how to do that. But I found a mind … a bright, inquisitive, and relatively powerful mind. Its brain must be capable of containing my bright spark. I will feast on its memories and learn of these meat sacks to plan my next move.
Chief: Here now. What are you doing up and about at this hour?
L’Rre: I am avoiding a beating for as long as possible.
Chief: Ah the ship ain’t that big, hon. Best you get it done with. I hope you at least had fun earning it.
L’Rre: Are you calling my parents?
Chief: Nah, why deny you the pleasure of running and them the pleasure of catching you.
L’Rre: You are a strange … huuuuuuuumaaaaaaaan.
Chief: I’m a Marine. What happened to your voice?
L’Rre: Huumaan, you will obey me. What the Hells? Get … ou …
Chief: Is this a vole game?
L’Rre: Get … out … call my parents!! Huumaan … obeeeeeey meeee!
Chief: … Chief to Nok. I got your daughter here in the shuttle bay and she’s acting weird. Like she’s speaking in tongues!
Nok: <Hold her. You heard?>
Nok: <Hold her. You heard?>
M’Ffe: <Yes. Chief, hold her. We’ll be right there! She acts like she’s speaking in tongues to avoid punishment. It doesn’t work anymore.>
Nok: <No psis on my side of the family.>
M’Ffe: <We’ll be right there … (come here and let me explain something to you mister …)>
The mind is strong enough but rather ... cramped. This one … resists. But to no avail. This will be like taking Hawking photons from the semi-formed. Wait ...
L’Rre: Whaaat are you doing? I have the strength of a hundred … shivering … newborn … mice? Why are you all so tall! Releeeease me! You big dummies! Hit me as hard as you want! Harder! Is that the best you can do?
Nok: … reverse psychology?
M’Ffe: Obviously. Continue.
Chief: You know on Terra they don’t spank kids.
M’Ffe: You have a problem with this?
Chief: Nope. I’m from Mars. My dad took a belt to me and my sibs all the time.
M’Ffe: We are lacking a belt ... sadly.
Chief: Oh here, be my guest. Take mine. What took you so long getting here?
M’Ffe: I was peeing on a stick if you must know. She …
Chief: Tricked you?
Nok: Yup. Had enough yet?
L’Rre: Yes Voivoi. This was entirely satisfactory. Thank you.
Nok: No more lying, pranking or mind talk without asking.
L’Rre: No sir. Voivoi?
L’Rre: Never mind. I’m going to bed.
Ow. Owowowowowowowow! Owie! Fuck! Ow!