Apologies for being away, but the Enterprise Broadband cut out and communications between me and the rest of Starfleet wasn't possible for three days.
With the Enterprise reaching Earth's Solar System, everybody is getting ready for the Christmas Party starting on the 5th of December.
Ten Forward has got to be decked out properly, and we've got to pick up all the items we need.
Food and the cabaret are top of the list. Guinan is overseeing the former, with Riker looking after the latter.
Guinan comes to be with a disgusted look.
"Captain, Federation Foodies have only supplied about half the amount we asked for. Before it is all over we'll run out of supplies."
"Can the replicators help?" I suggest.
"Well, yes," she replies, "But they are going to notice the difference in quality."
"After a few Bajoran Brandies and Klingon Bloodwines, they won't have a clue what they're eating."
Giunan agrees and brightly walks off.
Is this what the party will be like; full of little problems to solve?
Beverly comes over.
"Hello, Jean-Luc" she sweetly says, "Is it allright if I ask you a small favour?"
I can feel something nasty coming along; whenever it's from Beverly, it usually involves Wesley, so I have a worried look on my face.
"What is it Beverly?"
"It's just that Wes so wants to join in the party; is it ok if we beam him on the Enterprise for the occasion."
I feel a black cloud coming over me.
"Err...well, he is a little underage, Beverly" I haltingly tell her.
"I know." she agrees, "But he so much wants to see you all again. I promise he won't be any trouble, especially during our dances together. I've told him to bring his own date, or find a young lady here."
Though I know I've been pushed into a corner, I reluctantly agree.
After Beverly goes, Worf comes to see me.
"Sir, security will be kept at a maximum; we'll be keeping an eye on all the visitors. If there is any trouble, we'll be throwing them in the brig." he declares.
"Mr Worf." I sigh, "We always need a degree of security, but try and relax a little. After all, it will be the Christmas Party. Err.... let your hair down a little."
"Just take it easy and be friendly to the guests, Mr Worf"
Worf departs, mumbling something unintelligable in Klingon.
Riker comes in next. Is there a queue of Officers outside?
"Captain" he says, "Sid Starr and The Starrlighters have been beamed aboard, and are in their quarters"
"Excellent, Number One, I'll go and talk to him.
I go to Sid's quarters where I see a little old man with a nurse next to him.
"Hello Sid" I cheerfully say to him.
"It's Mr Starr to you, sonny" he growls at me then suddenly has a wheezing cough; his nurse puts the oxygen mask on his face for a minute.
"Are you sure you'll be allright for the party Si...I mean Mr Starr?" I ask him.
"Now listen, sonny." he tells me, "I've been doing this sort of thing for decades with the boys. I had been a veteran when I did the cabaret for Boothby the gardener's 5th birthday party."
"So what will you be playing for us, Mr Starr?" I inquire.
"Don't you tell me how to do my job, sonny." he growls again, "You'll get the usual mix of Federation tunes, plus some classic Earth tunes that have been going for a few centuries."
He wheezes again, and the nurse administers the oxygen mask. I depart.
I'm looking forward to the party, although with a slight air of panic.