AOH :: DWRFTRK3.TXT|
Subject: AND NOW.... DWARFTREK part 3!!!
Paul Neve sat glued to his computer screen, hammering away at the keyboard.
This was by far and away the best thing he had ever written; a Star Trek
story of epic proportions, the story of the Borg invasion, set 50 years
after TNG. He had missed one of the legendary SFX lager and curry nights
for this, and his decision had proven to be the right one. The quality of
the story amazed even himself; if he could maintain this quality, then
perhaps it might be time to start that novel he had been threatening himself
with for years.
He continued to type feverishly, not noticing the aches and pains in his
fingertips. He had been at it now solidly for over four hours, stopping only
to consider the phrasing of a sentence or to read over what he had written.
He was so engrossed in his work he did not notice the flash of light behind
him, and carried on working until he heard the sound of someone clearing
their throat behind him. He whirled round. When he saw who the someone was
he had trouble persuading his mouth to obey his commands. He eventually
managed to stutter, "Q!". Considering that his sentence consisted of a single
letter, the fact that he had to stutter it out was a testament to his shock.
Q looked at Paul with a smarmy grin on his face.
"Oh, you _can_ speak; how nice!" remarked Q.
Paul gaped at him. "But you're fictional!"
"One universe's fiction is another's fact; you as a sci-fi fanatic should
appreciate that. And as an omnipotent being, I can step between universes
slightly more easily than you walk down a flight of stairs."
Paul looked at the can of Fosters by his computer and sniffed it
"Oh, I'm quite real," said Q, "At least, I'm as real as your pitiful
little concept of reality allows. Come to think of it," he said, motioning
towards the lager, "that stuff probably gives you humans a better grip on
reality. You should drink more of it."
"But what do you want?" asked Paul, beginning to recover his stride and
considering possibilities as to who was responsible for this somewhat
convincing practical joke.
"I'm here to liven up your irrepressably drab and awful universe. Call
it my good deed for the millenium. I'm here to make you finish DwarfTrek!"
Paul blinked. This was not what he had expected.
"DwarfTrek? But I gave that up a year ago!"
"Yes," said Q, "but just consider all those thousands, well hundreds,
well four people whose lives will be made better if you put them out of
their misery and tell them what happens next!"
"Suspense makes life more interesting," retorted Paul. "Besides, I've had
much better ideas since then. This one I'm writing now, for instance."
"Oh, yes. Tell me about it. I'm sure it's positively fascinating!" Q's
voice oozed with sarcasm. Paul either didn't hear it or chose to ignore
"It's brilliant! It's the story of a Borg invasion set 50 years after
"Oh, that won't do!" interrupted Q. "We can't have you mapping out the
future for my little Jean-Luc. Such an unpleasant future at that!"
"But it's my best story ever! I've got to finish it!"
Q pondered for a while. "Hmmm, you do have a dilemma. Well, we can
easily solve that." He waved his hand, there was a flash of light and the
two of them abruptly appeared in the terminal room at Kingston University.
"Right," said Q. "Log on, load up your news program and go into
Paul looked bemused but obeyed. He looked at the list of news items;
nothing out of the ordinary. He turned to Q. "What?" he demanded.
Q waved his hands and there was a tiny little pinprick of a Q-flash.
"Look again," gloated Q, pointing to an article that had just appeared out
Paul looked at the item. It was a story, "I, Locutus".
"You'll find it quite different to yours, but close enough to ensure
you can never post your story without being accused of ripping this bloke
off. And to add insult to injury, it's good. Damn good. In fact, possibly
the best story that has or ever will appear on this news group. And just to
be doubly sure, so you can't accuse this guy of breaking into your house
and reading the only copy of your story in existance, the author comes
from South Africa."
Paul gaped for a bit. Q waved his hands and they both vanished in a
Q-flash, to reappear back where they started.
"Well, I must be off now, I can't hang around here all day yakking to
you, I've got places to go, people to torment, planets to wreck. Have fun!"
Q vanished in the customary flash of light.
Paul sat still for five solid minutes, looking at the area of space where
Q had been. Eventually he pulled himself out of the daze, and noticed the
still unfinished can of lager. He downed it in one, took another from the
sixpack and downed that too. Then he turned to his keyboard and began to
DWARFTREK part III
"Attack of the BorgTribbles"
Catutus of Borg rose from the bed and closely scrutinised his new body.
It was much like any other Borg's; humanoid - just, covered in metal and
cybernetic implants. A wave of emotion swept over him which was quickly
stifled by the collective; after all, emotion was _very_ irrelevent.
He felt a command form in his mind and before he was even consciously
aware of it, found his body moving to obey it. Beside the bed was a pile of
clothes. He found himself picking them up and moving off towards a waste
disposal unit. Catutus opened the waste chute, started to put the clothes
in it, then stopped.
It was that emotion again, and the collective started to clamp down on
it again. However, this time it was too intense, and instead of being wiped
from Catutus' mind entirely, its form was subtly changed. This failure on
the part of the collective left the Borg neural net wide open, and
Catutus' found the rogue emotion expanding to fill the gap. The emotion
rapidly became part of every Borg's mindset, effectively worming its way onto
the Borg's list of "non-irrelevent" things. This was not a big list. In
fact, the only thing on this list up until now had been the Borg themselves.
The list had now effectively doubled in length.
All this had taken mere milliseconds to occur, and Catutus looked down
on his new body once again. What he saw was not pleasing, neither to him,
nor the Borg collective.
Prior to Catutus' assimilation, the Borg had been assimilating this
culture, assimilating that, destroying that, without really having a goal
in mind. The only goal was the means; the assimilation of one culture made
the assimilation of another that much easier. Catutus had supplied the Borg
with a goal, one which many people might have found trite or unimportant.
Trite was irrelevent. Unimportant was irrelevent. All other races would
But first, the Borg had a problem to sort out.
Catutus started to make his way to his rightful place; the control area,
the only vaguely individual area on the ship. Before the aquisition of
Catutus, Locutus, formerly Picard of the Federation, had stood in the
control area. However, before the aquisition of Catutus, the Borg had not
been aware of the overwhelming importance of looking unfeasibly cool; they
had not seen the necessity of looking good enough to eat lunch off of. They
were not aware of the sacred nature of snazzy silk garments, and were
dismayed to learn that, as a fashion statement, an all-over metal body-suit
with optional eye laser was not really a show stopper.
The Borg ship moved away from Red Dwarf. They had learned all they had
needed to know about it from Catutus himself. Most of it was irrelevent,
and Catutus quickly ensured that the non-irrelevent parts of it (ie, the
being known as Cat's wardrobe) had been transported aboard.
Then the Borg vessel stretched infinitely into warp speed and was gone.
A Borg ship with a mission - to boldly go and find drop-dead fashionable
clothes that no-one had worn before!
Lister was somewhat pleased when the flying Rubik's cube decided that it
had had enough of tearing Red Dwarf into shreds, as it meant he could
proceed to the drive room without having lumps of spaceship fall on his
head. When he got there, the Cat was nowhere to be seen.
"Where's the Cat?" he asked Holly.
"Dunno. He's not on the ship."
"You what? So I'm the only one left?! Has everything gone smeggin'
"Nope, everything's _always_ been smegging mad, you know that!"
replied Holly. "Hang on a minute... I've got ships on my scanner. Unknown
"Unknown configuration? So what's new?"
Shane Athem guided in the shuttlecraft closer to the vessel. The red ship
was gigantic; a positive leviathan. It dwarfed even Borg vessels, which
was saying something. As he moved closer, his fingers flew over the controls,
trying to squeeze as much as he could out of the shuttle's limited sensors.
He blinked. That wasn't right.
He keyed in the command again and got the same results. He blinked
On a ship that size, there was only one lifeform. Human.
Athem had not been expecting to live through the passage through
Drassum's creation and had definitely not expected to find a human being
on the other side. By Athem's calculations, Drassum's wormhole would
create a rip in time and space that traversed around three million years.
This would be quite an achievement (albeit not what the intention originally
was) if that was all there was to it. However, the rip was not stable and
would continue to grow at an exponential rate. Athem didn't have a clue
what this would eventually mean but didn't think it would be very nice,
whatever it was. But to find a human on the other side kind of negated
these suspicions. Athem had great faith in mankind and in the Federation,
but to last three million years unchanged? He doubted it.
He flew in closer to the ship's surface, close enough to make out the
white lettering on the side. Red something, it said. "Red Dwarf". A
misnomer if ever there was one.
The little blob that represented the Red Dwarf's one and only crew-
member continued to blatantly exist, much to Athem's surprise.
That was a man with a lot of answers. Athem made his way to the
shuttle's emergency transporter and beamed himself aboard the Dwarf.
Rimmer felt himself coalesce back in existance but kept his eyes firmly
shut. He didn't want to know.
He thought about this. Come to think of it, he didn't _really_ not
want to know, he was just scared stupid to know.
Come on, Big Man, he said to himself. What would Julius Caesar do?
Something Roman, probably, and then get stabbed by Brutus. Not really the
greatest of help.
Perhaps if he just opened his eyes, just a crack, then if it was that
bad he could close them again.
He attempted this but his eyes insisted; they were not open for business
at this time, and furthermore were not likely to be for the foreseeable
future. Not that there was a foreseeable future, as Rimmer found it very
difficult to see anything with his eyes shut.
One eye? Just a teensy peek?
This he managed, and it wasn't so bad after all. He opened his eyes
He closed them again.
Didn't help. When he re-opened them it was still the same scene.
He was surrounded by a yellow grid on a black border. There was no
exits; indeed, it was almost impossible to see where the floor ended and
the wall began. He started to walk, picking a direction at random in an
attempt to find the limits of this room. Eventually he would have to hit
a wall of some kind.
After 15 minutes he was still walking.
This was getting to Rimmer. "Help!" he screamed. "Let me out of here!"
A female voice abruptly said, "Unable to comply. Holodeck entities may
not give level one commands."
Rimmer whirled round. "What? Who said that?"
"Holodeck computer, version 5.3, copyright Microsoft Corp, stardate
40121.3. Waiting for coherent command."
"Holodeck? What's that?"
"Holodeck: Device for simulation of event using holographic and
replicator technology," explained the computer. "Still waiting for
"Command? How about, 'let me out of here'?"
"Holodeck entities may not give level one commands," repeated the
"Oh, typical. The command that lets me out is off limits to me.
Wonderful. So, what can I do?"
"A full list of non-level one commands would take over twelve hours to
list. Do you wish to continue?"
"Hang on, hang on! If I get you right, I can simulate anything or
anyone... and if it takes that long to list _what_ I can do, I must be able
to do practically anything! Computer, show me a hammond organ!"
Cue the appearance of one hammond organ. Rimmer walked over it it and
gingerly prodded it. Not only was it solid, but so was Rimmer!
"I can touch!" he shouted gleefully, and started to bash the keys.
Rimmer loved hammond organ music but could actually play one slightly less
than Lister could play guitar. In fact, Rimmer playing the hammond organ
was a considerably worse prospect than Lister and his guitar, as not
only was hammond organ music itself enough to make you vomit, but Rimmer's
playing was such that it made you want to vomit your own intestines.
Rimmer stopped playing at this point, which was lucky for the Enterprise, as
had he continued he would have undoubtedly crashed the ship's computer,
which would have disabled the life support systems and killed everyone on
Rimmer decided to try something a little more complex. "Computer, show
me Julius Caesar, Napoleon, Genghis Khan, and a Risk board with the pieces
set up. Oh, and I've got to win."
The computer complied.
Then it hit him. Sod Risk, he could always come back to that...
"Hang on, forget that! Computer, show me a woman."
"Erm... beautiful. Use your imagination!"
"Running program Barclay-3," responded the computer.
A studdingly beautiful woman appeared on top of the hammond organ in a
Starfleet uniform, bearing a not unremarkable resemblence to a certain
councillor that most Enterprise crewmembers were familiar with.
"Computer," said Rimmer, looking over his shoulder in case someone was
watching him, "lose the clothes."
The computer obeyed. Rimmer dribbled at her for a bit, then moved
towards her. He glanced over his shoulder one last time. Nobody. He
couldn't believe his luck.
Rimmer had realised the more erotic ramifications of the holodeck and
you couldn't have got him out of there even by attaching his testicles to
the Enterprise's left warp nacelle and going to warp 9.9!
Picard strode onto the bridge, closely followed by Riker. "Report," he
"Shields and weapons systems still down, warp drive on minimal power,
speeds up to warp two available," replied Data. "We were able to compensate
for the effects of the rift on our computer systems, but the rift's unstable
nature means that it is impossible to predict the subspace pulses it
generates. We could find our systems disabled without a moment's warning."
"The Borg?" asked Riker.
"No sign of them, sir. The indications are that they have entered the
temporal rift. It is also likely that the convoy of shuttlecraft have done
"We can't leave our people on the other side of that," said Riker.
Picard nodded his head. "Mr Data, what would be the effect on the
Enterprise if we were to go through that rift?"
"Through? Impossible to say, sir."
"Could we remedy any adverse effects once we were on the other side?"
"There is no way of knowing, Captain."
Picard looked at Riker. "Then until we know more, going through the
rift is an unacceptable risk. What about the planet?"
"There appears to be no lifesigns on the majority of the surface.
The scientific complex is badly damaged and is emitting subspace pulses
that are interfering with our sensors. However, there _could_ be life down
"Number One, form an away team. Go down there and see what you can find
out. Someone had to have started this; perhaps you can find out precisely
what it is that's _been_ started."
Riker looked at Data and motioned with his head.
"Not you, Data," said Picard. "I need you to look into something else
that's cropped up. Report to the brig."
"The _brig_, sir?"
"That was the order, Commander, the brig."
Data was perplexed. He was not aware of any action of his that might have
caused Captain Picard dissatisfaction; especially one that would cause
the captain to remove him from an away mission and send him to the brig.
Could it have been his failure to supply specific details regarding
the temporal rift? Or some kind of problem with his command of the
ship when the captain had been in the transporter room? The captain
did appear somewhat agitated, but he was at a loss to figure out what
he had done.
Data walked into the brig, took a look at the occupant and whipped out
his tricorder. He inclined his head. Before he could say anything, the
occupant's face - such as it was - lit up.
"What an excellent design! What are you, the 10,000 series? Did they
get around the design flaw in the 9,000 where when faced with certain
death, the cognition circuits get caught in a loop? Where's your serial
port?" It peered closely at Data's face. "Shame they messed up the skin
colour... was your retail price reduced because of it?"
Data experienced something utterly new to him. Speechlessness.
"Ah, they've messed up your speech circuits too, have they?"
"All systems are operating within normal parameters," replied Data.
He moved closer to the newcomer, staring into his tricorder. "You are also
an android," he added, stating the obvious.
"A 9000 mechanoid, actually," corrected the mechanoid. "My name is
There was an uncomfortable silence. Kryten had never been comfortable
around other mechanoids, especially not after Lister had added lying,
being insulting and a number of other important human traits into his
programming. Data had not had much experience with other mechanical beings.
There was his "brother", Lore, and his "daughter", Lal; both incidents had
ended unhappily. He was getting used to human behaviour and was not sure
how another android - or mechanoid, as this Kryten seemed to prefer - was
going to react. Data decided to attempt to break the ice.
"How are you able to emulate human vocal behaviour so closely?" he asked.
"I have been trying for many years, but have not even begun to break the
surface. You, on the other hand, despite your strange appearance, seem
to have mastered it. You use contractions, and you make little sense when
you speak. I have found these both to be important aspects of sounding
"Why would you want to sound human?" replied Kryten, pretending to
take the strict mechanoid viewpoint.
"It is my ambition. I have striven all my life to become as human as
Kryten's eyes widened. "It's overrated. I was human for a little while.
It's crap. Their nipples don't work. Look, I'm an old clapped out series
9000, but my nipples can pick up Kiss FM easily. When I was human I couldn't
even get Radio 4 out of them!"
Data inclined his head. This was going to take some time.
Riker felt the familiar sensation of transporter rematerialisation die away
and cast his eyes around, taking in the surroundings. He whistled, then
tapped his combadge.
"Riker to Enterprise."
"Go ahead, Number One."
"It's a mess down here, sir. I don't think we'll learn anything
from the lab; there's not that much left of it. Just about every piece of
equipment is either burnt out or smashed."
"Do you want Commander LaForge to come down and assist?"
"I don't think there's much point; nothing here looks very
salvagable." Riker noticed Worf trying to get his attention. "Hold on, sir."
He looked at Worf. "What is it?"
"I am picking up lifesigns." He motioned towards one of the less
damaged computer panels. "Behind there."
"Stand by, Captain." Riker motioned to Worf and between them they
managed to rip the panel away from the wall. Behind it was a man, huddled
up in a foetal ball, whimpering to himself. The man's ID badge read Doctor
"It's alright," said Riker. "We're from the Enterprise. What
"It's not my fault!" whimpered Drassum. "It was that Athem; it was
his fault! He distracted me, right at a crucial point! He's jealous of me!"
Worf looked at Riker and frowned. It was not a pretty sight.
Drassum continued to whine to himself. "Nothing ever works for me!
Why won't it ever work. I didn't do anything wrong, and it still didn't
work!" He was getting increasingly hysterical. Riker slapped him around the
face. He carried on whimpering. Worf hesitated, nudged Riker out of the way
and slapped Drassum - Klingon style. The sound of the slap resounded
throughout the room. Drassum's eyes went glassy and he felt onto the floor
in a heap.
Riker glared at Worf. "Riker to Enterprise; three to beam directly
Worf shrugged in a very human-like manner. "It was for his own good,"
Reg Barclay had just come off duty and decided to make some use of the
Holodeck. He had avoided it recently, especially after all the trouble he'd
had with it in recent months. Seeing as how he'd accumulated quite a lot
of time in hand, he decided to make use of it. Nothing special, nothing...
offensive, just a bit of harmless... recreation. He'd learnt his lesson at
least regarding Enterprise crewmembers, and actually suspected that Geordi
had put a lock on the Holodeck computer that recorded any simulations of
actual crewmembers. He wasn't going to take the risk.
Barclay tapped the Holodeck controls. "Computer, run program
"Program Barclay-3 already executing. Do you wish to abort?" replied
That couldn't be right. He hadn't used the Holodeck in weeks, and
nobody would have run one of his programs. Number three? Wasn't that...?
He racked his memory. It was. But who on Earth would have run such
"Computer, who is in Holodeck four?"
"No crewmember is currently in Holodeck four."
Barclay frowned. Then who the hell had started up the program? Perhaps
it was just a glitch in the Holodeck software. Perhaps a random power
fluctuation had fouled up the memory and caused the value of the execution
address to point to his program.
Sure. And Captain Picard had a full head of hair.
"Computer, who started program Barclay-3?"
"Reason for program execution unknown."
That did it. He couldn't afford the risk of letting the program
continue, anyway. It might have shown up on the logs and he couldn't exactly
say it ran by itself, even if it did!
"Computer: Terminate program Barclay-3."
"Now run program Barclay-12."
"Program complete. Enter when ready."
Barclay grinned, rubbed his hands together and walked into the
"Let me get this straight," said Riker. "You were experimenting with highly
dangerous equipment; you told Shane Athem, the foremost authority in
his field, the man with six Nobel Prizes and the Vulcan Science Institute's
first non-Vulcan member to go to hell; you tried to prove a theorem that even
I as a complete physics novice could see was fundamentally flawed; and now
you're blaming Doctor Athem for it all?"
"Of course!" said Drassum, pleased that Riker could see it his way.
"That's exactly it!"
"You are aware that Doctor Athem is nowhere to be found?"
"That's not my fault!" explained Drassum.
"And the indications are that he's been sucked into the rift?"
"That's not my fault!" repeated Drassum.
"And he could be injured, or even dead?!"
"That's not my fault!" said Drassum, not being one for originality.
"And the rift itself is unstable and is growing at an exponential
Drassum's face went red and his eyes began to leak tears. "Nothing
ever works for me! It's not my fault that things go wrong! The universe
doesn't like me!" He hit the table and started to blubber uncontrollably.
Doctor Crusher glided over with a hypospray and quickly jabbed Drassum in
the arm. He slumped onto the bed with his thumb in his mouth.
"He's got a slight concussion, no thanks to Worf, and he's in
shock, but there's no permanent damage," announced Crusher.
"I can't say I'm overjoyed," said Riker dryly.
"You were a bit harsh with him, Will."
"_I_ was harsh? I was positively fuming! I've got no patience with
fools, especially those fools whose mess we have to clear up!" He stormed
out of sickbay, Worf in tow.
Riker turned to Worf. "You were right. It was for his own good."
"And for ours," added Worf.
Rimmer was having such a good time that he didn't notice that he'd ceased to
exist. Naturally, when he noticed he was rather shocked and wasn't very
<Help!> he shouted, except he didn't, because he didn't have a
mouth, or vocal chords, or lungs, or anything for that matter, holographic
He looked around. It wasn't dark, it wasn't light, it wasn't quiet,
it wasn't noisy. It just *was*.
Rimmer probed outwards; with what he didn't know. It seemed as if
his consciousness was an expanding sphere. He had no words to explain the
sensation, but he seemed to be encountering other... fragments, and
incorporating them into himself. With each fragment, his awareness of his
environment grew. He felt extensions to himself forming with every second;
weapons, propulsion systems, and the knowledge to use them. As his control
grew, so did the natural resistance of whatever system he was in. There was
nothing he could do to stop his advance now, even if he'd wanted to; the
expansion process had become an involuntary one. And why should he want to?
This was power beyond his wildest dreams; what he had always wanted. Command
and authority, and the power to back it up.
Rimmer hesitated for a moment. Whenever he tried wielding power of
any kind it invariably ended in tears. Should he continue?
He didn't have a choice in the end, as the last vestiges of
resistance died away. He was in complete control. His consciousness filled
every available area of this environment.
It was time to show them what Captain Arnold Judas Rimmer, Space
Adventurer could do!
Ensign Nowan looked up from the helm controls. "Did you request a course
correction, sir?" she asked.
Picard looked at Riker. Riker shrugged.
"Why?" said Picard.
"We're moving towards the temporal rift."
"What the hell?" said Riker.
Picard kept his composure. "Abort course change, Ensign," he ordered.
Nowan's fingers jabbed at the controls. "I can't!" she said. "I'm
"Riker to Engineering! Geordi, are you doing anything down there?"
"I'm a bit busy at the moment, Commander, we've got a rogue program
running riot through the computer systems! I'll get back to you!"
"_You're_ a bit busy?" yelled Riker. "We're heading into the rift
here and there's not a thing we can do about it! Forget the computer and
make sure we get through in one piece!"
"Commander, without computer control there's not a thing we can do
about anything! We've got to get the computer back or we don't stand a chance
of making it through!"
"You're saying you've got _no_ control over anything?"
"I'm saying _no-one's_ got control over anything!"
Ensign Nowan whirled round. "Captain! Helm controls going off-line!
Interference from the rift!"
"Tactical also off-line," reported Worf.
"Does anything work round here?!" yelled Riker.
The Enterprise teetered on the brink of the rift, there was a flash
of light and then it was gone.
Athem's shuttle crept up behind the Borg ship. The huge cube hung motionless
over a planet, emitting green beams of energy that ripped great chunks out
of the surface and flung them towards the Borg ship. Lister and Athem looked
on in horror.
"It's a class-M planet. 20 million inhabitants, low level of
technology, simple farmers."
Lister looked aghast. "You say the Cat's responsible for _that_ ?"
"Not responsible," replied Athem. "He doesn't have any control over
his actions any more. He's operating on behalf of their collective." Athem
went over to the control panel and fiddled with it. "Wait a minute. This
can't be right."
"According to these sensors, the Borg are leaving the people alone.
Their tractor beams are removing all... clothes! They're not taking anything
except clothes! Since when do the Borg care about clothes?"
"Erm... that sounds exactly right. Since when do the Borg care
about clothes? Since they grabbed the Cat. We've got to get him back."
Athem looked at Lister as if he'd just offered him an elephant in
a bun. "Get him back! You're joking! You can't just waltz onto the Borg
ship, grab your friend and walk off!"
"Watch me! How do you use this transporter thingy of yours?" Lister
started hammering the controls.
"Hang on! You're going to break it!" Lister studied Athem impassively.
"I'm going to regret this, but..." He went to a drawer and took out two
phasers. "If we're going to go, let's go prepared!"
They materialised right in the guts of the Borg vessel. Athem was familiar
with the sight; there was not a person in the Federation that had not seen a
picture of it. Pictures did little to prepare you for the actual sight itself.
The whole environment appeared geared to the suppression of individuality.
You were forced to feel small and insignificant; your sense of self was
dwarfed by the never-ending array of machinery around you. And all this went
on as far as the eye could see, and you stood there in the middle of it all,
feeling smaller and smaller by the minute.
It was Lister who broke into Athem's daze.
"Come on you stupid git, let's get moving!"
Well, thought Athem, I'll say this for him; he speaks his mind. He
took out his tricorder and waved it around. "This way," he said. "There's a
lifesign this way. Borg don't usually register as lifesigns, so perhaps your
friend is still intact."
Lister followed Athem's lead. They walked for some time along
the never changing corridor. Suddenly Athem stopped and looked up from
"What's wrong?" asked Lister.
"That lifesign. It's not registering as just a single being any
"You what? So what does that mean?"
"It means that there could be trouble around this next corner."
"Trouble is my middle name," announced Lister, and promptly turned
the corner. There was a pause, and then a scream.
Athem darted around the corner. It was a moment before his brain
could decypher what was going on.
Lister was under attack by a collection of furry balls with lumps
of metal hanging off them. Tribbles! Not just your regular tribbles, either.
These were... BorgTribbles. And they did not look very pleased to see them.
Athem backed off as some of the tribbles turned their attention away
from Lister and to him. They began to advance towards him...
[cue dramatic Best of Both Worlds-style music...]
TO BE CONTINUED...
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