Friday, December 23, 2016

Fear and Loathing in Zero-Gee

Transcript # 12200567 GCS Tesla Cargo Deck (Some hours before the poignant game of peek a boo played in sickbay between the Lieutenant and his Synthetic love interest.)

Captain: Tell me again ...

Lt.: Aye sir. Telling it again. Ms. GAIA and I went after the NBE that remained on the ship. We tracked it to shipping and then the cargo hold. We used cryogenic sprays to drive it further into the hold and it booked right for the AXA. The NBE managed to open the case of the AXA and ...

GAIA: I slammed the lid on it.

Lt.: I perma-glued it shut. Then I sealed the entire AXA in perma-plast. That door isn't opening anytime soon barring a shaped nuclear charge hitting it.

GAIA: Then we called you to report this.

Captain: ... I haven't said this to you in a while but ... good job Technical Officer.

Lt.: Sir?

Captain: Oh you thought I was going to chew your ass? Heck no! Why did you decide to jam our unfriendly ghost in there?

Lt.: ... Sir. The casing of the Rockapongalie artifact is impervious to sensor scans, nearly unbreakable and inert to darned near any test I could think up. I was fairly sure it could contain the entity. The AXA has not been powered up in months and has sat inert here.

Captain: Smart job. Now we got us an excuse to unload that AXA and the NBE. We're going to stick them both into orbit round that gas giant we pass by to survey. Let them send the Edison to retrieve it and try to make contact or back engineer the AXA. They're supposed to be number one at contact scenarios and dealing with alien tech.

GAIA: Edison has the most stuck up AI in the fleet. I hate that bitch.

Captain: ...

GAIA: I was thinking worse than the b-word too. Darned censoring subroutine makes me ration swear words.

Lt.: Yes sir, shall I have it moved to the teleporter?

Captain: Nonono. Move it to Shuttle 2 and prep her to launch ASAP!

Lt.: Aye sir! Moving the AXA to Shuttle 2 and prepping the bird to launch ASAP.

Captain: GAIA, tell the Exec and Jenn they got errand duty. They're dumping our AXA into Klaatuu Behemo Alpha. Then you guys can stand down and have a bite and some rest ... and a recharge.

Lt.: Thank you Captain!

***

Transcript #3524 GCS Tesla/Shuttle 2

Exec: I'm getting too old for this shit.

Jenn: It's a fine day for a shuttle flight Ma'am!

Exec: I'm getting some tea. What are you so chipper for?

Jenn: May I speak freely ma'am?

Exec: Sure, hon.

Jenn: I don't have to guard that misbegotten piece of junk anymore. feels like I was doing it for months.

Exec: Okay. I'll give you that, Marine. Coffee?

Jenn: Tea please. Thank you ma'am. I could have done that for ya.

Exec: Stand down I tasted your coffee.

Jenn: Heheheh. Chief says it's the reason I'm still single. Uh entering orbit round Klaatu B-Alpha in five.

Exec: Well there goes the coffee and tea. Get your helmet on, hon. Let's do this!

Jenn: Aye ma'am. Suiting up.

Exec: Suit check, you're good.

Jenn: Suit check, you're good too.

Jenn: Entering orbit ...

Exec: Good. We're going to positive yaw till we're nose out on the orbit. Belt in.

Jenn: Belting in. Positive yaw. Mark. Nose is out.

Exec: Cut internal gravity on my mark. Mark. Gravity check.

Jenn: Gravity check. We have zero gees.

Exec: Check. Depressurizing on my mark. Mark. Opening ramp. Releasing AXA pallet ... releasing Axa pallet ... goddam pallet is stuck!

Jenn: Roger that, goddam pallet is stuck! Wait what?!

Exec: Gimme some line ...

Jenn: Line is in the lockers back there, Ma'am. Shall I close the hatch and rev up the gravity?

Exec: We're losing this AXA right now or my name isn't Philomena Gertrude Lovecraft! Give me some of that vacc tape. Always got some rolls in the cockpit to tape up exploding consoles.

Jenn: Here you go ... Gertrude ...

Exec: You want to get a my boot on your backside Marine? Watch how I'm braiding this stuff. They don't teach this in the Academy.

Jenn: I learned it back home in Hellas actually.

Exec: Gotcha. Give me that pry bar.

Jenn: Ma'am ... maybe that NBE is causing this. I should go.

Exec: No. You're the better pilot in case this shuttle set up goes further south. Mind your superior and your elder. I'll go and that noncorporeal son of a bitch better keep outta my way!

Jenn: Aye ma'am! Be careful.

Exec: I'll be careful. Man you blow up one subdwarf planet and people don't let you forget. Man this is hot work in a suit. I'm getting too old for this.

<Bang! Bang! Bang!>

Jenn: Old? You" Hah! Just be careful of the microgravity effects. Your below the zero spot. You could fall out of the shuttle if you get distracted.

Exec: You're a sweetie.

<Bang! Bang! Bang!>

Exec: Move you motherf ... I got it. I'm just going to give her a good shove!

Jenn: Give it a boot in the ass for the Squad ma'am! Not to mention the Chief!

Exec: Ayah. This is for turning darlin' Eustace into ... Laverne for a fortnight. You aren't even supposed to be able to do th ... uh!

Jenn: Ma'am? Situation?

Exec: I'm cool. I think I sprained by foot or something. I ... feel all hot now. Strange. Okay...  it's clear. Can we shut the door and turn down back on and like, get out of here?

Jenn: Aye Ma'am. Shutting the door. Pressurizing, Turning gravity back on. Be ...

<Thunk!>

Jenn: Oh crapcrapcrap ... Tesla, this is Shuttle 2 have a medic on hand please. The commander fell on her helmet and got knocked out. Oh crap crap crap. I didn't wait for her to 'aye' me.

***