Monday, November 30, 2009

Checking On The Party

"We're going to have to go to Wondawowman to make sure that everything is laid out properly for the Christmas Party next week." I tell Bev.

"I'm not too sure if that's a good idea, Jean-Luc." she replies, "Queen Diana isn't going to take kindly to any overseeing by a man. Remember, it's a planet of amazons, where my daughter-in-law Karena comes from. Best to take a step back from the planning and let them handle it."

"I know what you mean, Bev." I continue, "But if they haven't got enough vol-au-vents or other party food, then they are not going to be able to find any at short notice. They refuse to use replicators. there isn't a branch of Walmart Galaxy on their planet either."

"Well maybe I can just call the Queen on the video and ask?"

"Jean-Luc." Bev says, rolling her eyes, "It won't work."

"Don't worry." I say, "I'll just use the old Picard smile."


I get on the viewer and the Queen's image flashes on. She looks disappointed.

"Oh, it's you." she says, as if she's seen a the blind date she is going on and wants to get away quickly, "What do you want?"

"Greetings, your majesty." I say, using all my artificial pleasantries, "I must say, we are looking forward to visiting your planet next week for the Christmas party. How are errr... the preparations going?"

Diana looks offended.

"You are a man and you ask me how prepartions are going?" she snorts, "We are women, the supreme example of our sex. Naturally everything is way ahead of time. You have some nerve to.."

Bev hurriedly pushes me out of the way and talks to Diana herself.

"This is Beverly." she quickly says, "Hello Diana. Sorry that the Captain asked such a ridiculous question. Naturally I advised him not to, but he never listens."

"Hello Beverly." the Queen beams with a smile, "I'm so looking forward to seeing you next week. Maybe we can both start Karena & Wes to try for a daughter?"

"Maybe we can." Bev laughs in reply. She manages to keep me out of the way. Bev continues.

"Things seem to be going well, Diana" Beverly tells the Queen, "With amazons it doesn't surprise me. They are such great organisers."

"Thank you, Beverly." the amazon leader tells her, "It's always a pleasure to be complimented by an outsider."

"That's no problem. The Enterprise and the Rhode Island look forward to seeing you all next week." Bev concludes, "Goodbye for now."

Diana signs off and the videoscreen goes blank.

"Diplomacy is very different between races, Jean-Luc." Bev says with a laugh, "You'd be best to stay in the background. If you ask Diana for a dance, she'll probably withdraw from the Federation!"

Why is it I feel like I'll have to sit still and behave myself next week?

Saturday, November 28, 2009

TWQ: Christmas Shopping

In the US, the day after Thanksgiving is known as 'Black Friday', one of the heaviest shopping days of the year, and when hunting for Christmas gifts start. TWQ (The Weekend Question) asks about priorities.

When you start shopping for Christmas gifts, where is the first shop you will go to? Will you be able to do most of it in one store? List where you will be heading.

My answers are:

I'll be able to do most of it without leaving the house, as Amazon caters for all my book, CD and DVD BluRay requirements, as well as many other items.

Marks & Spencers are suitable for any clothing and toiletaries.

Now it's over to you...

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

T'Pol & Britney's Undercover Mission (Part Six)

Guest Poster: Karena

What a mess T'Pol, Britney and myself are in right now!

Sent to infiltrate the all-female mercenary group known as The Virago, the three of us have managed to find out their secret plans. T'Pol looks like their leader Ishtar, who was taken by the Enterprise. Ishtar's lieutenants Sala and Vada already despise me and Britney. Now, a shuttlecraft has landed on the planet Verdan, where we are, and the real Ishtar has emerged, presumably having escaped from the Enterprise.


I get my spear ready. The tension is as high as if a farmer was coming to tell his turkeys that it's Thanksgiving time. The only thing is, it looks like our necks are on the block!

"Take them!" commands Ishtar, "They must be executed immediately!"

"Hey!" T'Pol says desperately, "She's the fake. She just landed in a Starfleet vessel. So she must be an imposter."

Vada and Sala look at each other, rather confused. They don't want to kill the person who is really their leader.

Ishtar looks towards Sala.

"Sala, my dearest one." she starts, "You and I had matching tattoos on a certain part of our bodies that no one else knows about. Ask this imposter if she knows what it is and where it is."

Sala looks hard at T'Pol with a sly smile.

"Well then." she asks, "Where is it, then?"

"Errrr....." T'Pol stammers, her face going red.

"That's the proof we need." Sala says firmly, "Take the three of them and execute them right away."

I throw Britney and T'Pol a couple of spears, though I know they are not skilled fighters with the weapon as I am. The three of us can't defeat the whole of The Virago.

As Ishtar and the other members of  The Virago advance, Britney swings at them with her umbrella spear, fending them off, and whacking Sala on the head. I do the same, keeping them from getting too near. Bujt it's only a matter of time...

Suddenly, we see a group of Enterprise Security beam down. The approach with their phasers and stun the women quickly. Captain Picard approaches.

"We've got all the information about where The Virago were going to strike next." T'Pol tells him, "You have them anyway now. The Virago is finished."

"Well done, you three." says the Captain, "You have done well."

The women regain consiousness, and are handcuffed by Worf and his team.

"Don't think we won't forget what you have done." snarls Ishtar to the three of us. The Virago will have it's revenge."

"And I will upon you." Sala says in anger to Britney, "Keep looking over your shoulder. We will be there, someday."

"Thank you for helping, Karena." Captain Picard says to me, "We'll take you back to the Rhode Island."

"Anytime, sir." I reply, "Be careful that Britney and T'Pol don't rtun into trouble."

He laughs.

"Britney and T'Pol ALWAYS run into trouble!"

Monday, November 23, 2009

T'Pol & Britney's Undercover Mission (Part Five)

Editor's Note:

T'Pol, Britney and Karena are on the planet Verdan infiltrating an all-female gang of mercenaries known as The Virago. As T'Pol looks like their leader, Ishtar, who was apphrehended by the Enterprise, she has gone in her place so that they can find out all the plans and details of their raids. However, Britney is not making friends with The Virago, and worse is to come.

The REAL Ishtar has escaped, and is on her way to Verdan!


Guest Poster: Mirror T'Pol

"Now the fun begins, sistah!" Britney says as she wakes up in our tent the next morning, "Time to nonchalently find out all the facts in the conference."

"That's right, Brit." I say, "But try not to say anything to antagonise Sala and Vada. They are the trusted lieutenants of Ishtar. neither like you and Karena. They might be getting suspicious of me. Let's find out what we know and get out of here before we feel the sharp end of their spears."

"You got it, honey." she replies.

I emerge from the tent to see Sala and Vada standing to attention with their spears. Sala looks so internsely angry when Brit comes out behind me. Yesterday I told her that Britney would be sharing my tent, and not Sala, who previously did with the real Ishtar.

Karena runs up to escort us, and hopefully to diffuse the situation.

"Sisters." I say, "Let us go the conference and discuss future tactics for The Virago."

We all walk to and sit round a large open ground. There is a mail chair for me to sit on. I gesture Britney and Karena to sit and my left and right respectively. This annoys Sala and Vada further. They would probably have had this honour.

"This is not the correct seating position." Vada states, but after looking at me, says, "But we shall stay as we are for the moment."

"Review the plans for the next month ahead the The Virago are going to undertake." I say carefully, as not to arouse suspicion.

"Why is that necessary, Ishtar?"  Sala asks, "You know them fully."

"Of course I do, "But I wish our new recruits Britney and Karena to be up to date with our plans."

"I thought you would have had the time to keep Britney up to date considering the amount of hours the two of you spent in your tent." Sala sneers in a bitter manner.

"Meow!" laughs Britney, which inflamnes Sala even more. Karena grips her spear ready to use.

"Britney!" she whispers.

"The first attack." Vada starts, "Will be in six days time on the USS Constitution cargo ship. We will pose as loaders, and fly off with the whole goods. Two days after, there is some valuable minerals from the planet Vaw coming over on the Dalos ship. We'll grab that. Flolllowing that, our best job this month will be getting hold of the prison ship Chokeybound. It has some of the Federation's worst villains on board. If we release all them, it should keep Starfleet busy while we create more chaos and make money at the same time."

"Very good." I say.

"Why is Britney writing all that down?" asks Sala.

"Errr..she and Karena need to remember." I say quickly.

Suddenly, there is a noise from the sky. We all see a Starfleet shuttlecraft descending, about to land where we all are. Karena, Brit and I exchange slightly worried glances.

The women of  The Virago all rush towards the shuttlecraft. As the door opens, out emerges...Ishtar.

"She's an imposter!" Ishtar shouts, and all eyes turn towards us three.

Ooops! I think Karena, Britney and myself may have outstayed our welcome.

To be continued...

Saturday, November 21, 2009

TWQ: Cheer Up!

This week, TWQ (The Weekend Question) looks at things that will cheer you up.

What things will cheer you up? List as many as you wish.

My answers are:

Watching some of my favourite films on DVD. Watching 'Blazing Saddles' for example will have me laughing for days afterwards!

Being away from the office on vacation....or at home.

My birthday

Bacon, eggs etc...the full grill

Meeting really good friends after not seeing them for a while.

Now it's over to you...

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

T'Pol & Britney's Undercover Mission (Part Four)

T'Pol, Britney and Karena are infiltrating a gang of female mercenaries known as The Virago.

As T'Pol looks just like their leader, Ishtar, we have managed to apphrehend Ishtar and put T'Pol in her place. We hope the three women will be able to learn something of their activities so they can all be stopped. At the moment, we have no idea where they are. There is complete communication silence.

In the meantime, I am about to interrogate the real Ishtar and find out what I can

I don't rate my chances very highly.


I walk into the Interrogation Room, where Ishtar looks at me with disgust.

"So you are the 'great' Captain Picard?" she sneeringly says to me, "You will get nothing out of me, you Federation puppet!"

She then spits at me. Fortunately I havev a box of tissues on hand. I well prepared for these sort of occasions.

"It will be a lot easier if you tell me where The Virago are, and where they plan to strike next." I inform her in my officious tone, "You will find your sentence on the penal colony reduced significantly if you do."

"I will not betray my Virago sisters!" Ishtar declares defiantly, "Bring out your weapons of torture, you puppet. Not a word of betrayal shall pass my lips"

The door opens, and Bev enters.

"Jean-Luc." she whispers, "Perhaps we could use some truth serum on her?"

"I heard what you said!" Ishtar shouts, "It will not work; I have conditioned my body to reject any truth serum. Your woman here is wasting her time. Perhaps you'd like to give up torturing me and spend some time with her instead?"

"You are getting on my nerves, Ishtar." I tell her angrily.

"Good!" she laughlingly say, "It will only be a matter of time before my sisters find out where I am and rescue me."

"They don't even know you're away." I retort, "I have a crewmember who looks like you. Right now, she and two others are gathering all the information at The Virago location. We will soon have you all at the penal colony!"

A worried look suddenly comes across Ishtar's face.

"Come on, Bev." I say, "We don't need to question her. T'Pol, Britney and Karena will get them all."


A few hours later, I return to the Interrogation Room. Ishtar has vanished.

"How did she do it?" I ask Worf, who is there with his Security Staff."

"I do not know." he replies, "Howerver it seems she is an expert with circuitry and ventilation shafts. She left the room without anyone being aware."

"Seatch the ship!" I quickly say in  my best Captain's voice, "We've got to find her."

"It is too late." Data answers on my COM, "With her knowledge of computers and circuitry, Ishtar was able to steal a shuttlecraft and leave the Enterprise without us being aware."

"She's been gone hours." I say, "Undoubtably Ishtar has returned to wherever The Virago are. If she gets there before we find her, T'Pol, Britney and Karena will be dead!"

To be continued after the TWQ...

Monday, November 16, 2009

T'Pol & Britney's Undercover Mission (Part Three)

Guest Poster: Ensign Britney

This mission is not gonna be easy. If it fails, T'Pol, Karena and myself are liable to have our heads waved about on the end of spears. I prefer to keep my head where it is right now.

My soulsistah T'Pol looks exectly like Ishtar, the leader of an all-famale mercenary tribe known as The Virago, who are on the Verdan planet. Ishtar has been caught, and while the Enterprise tries to get information out of her, the three of us are going to find out more within the tribe.

We have met up with Ishtar's trusted lieutenants Sala and Vada. Already the latter has taken an instant dislike to Karena and me.


The five of us arrive at the camp of the Virago. The other women rush out to greet the return of their Leader.

"Greetings again." T'Pol announces, "I have bought two new powerful additions to our fighting force. Britney is a powerful, tough Deltan, and Karena is a rebel amazon."

All of them greet us with friendliness, but Sala and Vada stay back and watch, with grimaced expressions that could stop a clock.

We all settle down for an evening meal. As it's all cooked in a flame fire in the open ground, and obviously caught, I'm not going to ask what it was. In this circumstance, ignorance is bliss.

"I am impressed by The Virago, and honoured to be joining them." Karena says to the assembled band, "You truly are a great group."

Everyone then looks at me, as I am about to swallow something awful.

"Err...yeah." I mumble, "Great set up. What plans have you got?"

Vada and Sala look disgusted.

"It is not fit for a newcomer to ask such questions." Vada snaps.

"Hey!" T'Pol replies quickly, "She's one of us and can ask what she likes. Tomorrow morning, we will have a large conference to discuss our future manouvres, and where we intend to raid."

"Very well." Sala grudgingly concedes.

"Come on, Britney." T'Pol says to me, "Time to go to my tent and sleep there. We'll see you in the morning."

Sala gives a look of anger towards T'Pol, as if the winning Lottery ticket she lost has been found by her leader!

"What!" she exclaims, "Ishtar, you know we have always shared a tent together at night. Now this unknown is invited in instead!"

There is a hushed quietness in the camp, as everybody is waiting for the next move. With all the tension around, it's rather nerve-racking. Karena has got her spear aimed at Sala if anything drastic happens.

"Sala." T'Pol announces, "You were in my favour, but now Britney is. You may now share Vada's tent."

I've never actually seen steam come out of someone's ears, but I'm sure I did then, when looking at Sala. She storms away, jostling me in the shoulder as she passes.

"You are SO dead!" she whispers.

Karena rushes up to my soulsistah and I before the two of us enter the tent.

"That was risky." she says in a chastising manner, "You were supposed to keep a low profile, yet now they all hate us!"

"Hey, I'm the boss" T'Pol declares, "They will do as I say. C'mon, Brit, I'm ready for bed."

"I wonder how the Captain is doing with the real Ishtar on the Enterprise?" Karena says to us as she walks away.

A good thought.

To be continued...

Saturday, November 14, 2009

TWQ: Christmas Plans

As it's the middle of november, many will know what they have in mind to do on Christmas Day. TWQ (The Weekend Question) asks about this.

What plans have you got prepared for Christmas Day? Who are you visiting? If Thanksgiving is where you are, you can add that as well.

My answer is:

As I don't get Thanksgiving, I can only answer the first part.. On Christmas Day, my father & I intend to visit my friend and her mother in the afternoon  for Christmas lunch. As it gets dark very early here in Britain, we'll have to leave early.

Now it's over to you...

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

T'Pol & Britney's Undercover Mission (Part Two)

Guest Poster: Mirror T'Pol

The shuttlecraft starts slowing down as we head to the fourth planet on the Shaq System, named Verdan. My friend Britney and I get our outfits ready, as does the amazon Karena. She has her spear all ready.

Starfleet have captured Ishtar, leader off the all-female Virago mercenaries, who have being causing problems everywhere. As Ishtar looks like me, I will be posing as the leader, while Captain Picard interrogates the real woman. I don't think she'll break, as I've heard they are rather tough.


"Now listen, you two." warns Karena, "I don't want any shenanigans. This is a serious mission."

"Don't worry, blondie." replies Britney, "When we land, I'll be fully into mission mode, won't I sistah?"

"Yeah, Brit." I answer, "Don't worry, Karena, We are really responsible when we need to be."

"That's what I've heard." comments Karena, "Captain Picard always says you're responsible."

I try not to giggle too hard at that one.


The shuttlecraft touches down on Verdan. The three of us step out. We see two women approaching us. From the file I've been shown, they are Vada and Sala, Ishtar's lieutenants. These two are gonna be the trickiest to get past, like a customs official.

"Greeetings Ishtar." Sala says to me, then looks harshly at Britney and Karena, "Who are these women?"

"I have been most fortunate, Sala." I answer, "This is Britney, a skilled fighter, and the blonde woman is Karena, a rebel amazon. They will be a good addition to The Virago."

Vada steps forward.

"They do not look very trustworthy." remarks Vada, "You two need to be aware that if you betray us, you will be executed. Now, come, Ishtar. Let's go to the camp."

The five of us head into the forest towards the village. Brit, Karena and myself exchange worried looks. None of us fancy having our heads on the end of Vada's spear.

To be continued after the TWQ....

Monday, November 09, 2009

T'Pol & Britney's Undercover Mission (Part One)

I sigh as I know for this mission, I have no other choice but to ask the troublesome T'Pol to do it, and she's bound to insist that her even more troublesome friend Ensign Britney comes with her.

A knock on the door and T'Pol and her friend enter. Here we go.

"T'Pol." I begin, "This mission meeting was meant for you only."

"Captain." begins Britney, as she gets another tube of chewing gum out, "Where my soulsistah goes, I go, ain't that right?"

"Sure is, Brit, honey." T'Pol replies, "Now what do you want us to do, Captain?"

As I know they are both determined to go, I press on.

"Starfleet have informed that a band a rebel women mercenaries named The Virago have been causing havoc. They raid ships, outposts, anything to get more supplies."

"What do you want us to do?"

"Well, we've managed to capture their leader." I tell them, "Here is a picture of her."

T'Pol stands up in amazement.

"She looks like me!" the Vulcan says.

"Her name is Ishtar." I inform them, "She will be questioned here, but I think she will be very reluctant to answer any questions. By posing as their leader, you might be able to get a lot of information out of the other mercenaries. The shuttlecraft Ishtar was on had a preset route. We suspect it was to the planet where The Virago are on."

"This is gonna be cool!" Brit laughs.

"It's also highly dangerous." I reply sharply, "If they suspect T'Pol is not Ishtar, you lives will be forfeit. Ishtar has two trusted lieutenants, Vada and Sala. You have to convince them you are Ishtar. To help, Ensign Karena, the amazon from the USS Rhode Island will be going along with you to help. Tell the mercenaries that Karena and Britney are new recruits you have picked up."

"A piece of cake!" laughs Britney as she puts her gum into her Dr Martens boots to resume eating later.

The troublesome pair walk out to go to the outfitters to be kitted in costume for the mission.

Are The Virago ready for them?

To be continued...

Saturday, November 07, 2009

TWQ: TV Shows We Grew Up With

This week, TWQ (The Weekend Question) asks about tvshows we remember distinctly when we were young.

What tv shows have you grown up with, and remember distinctly to this day? List as many as you wish.

My answers are:

Timeslip (British science fiction)
The Singing Ringing Tree (East German children's story...very scary!)
Rowan & Martin's Laugh-In
Happy Days
Doctor Who (original 1963-1989)

Now it's over to you...

Wednesday, November 04, 2009

Deanna's Tiff (Part Two)

Two days have gone by. Deanna Troi and Will Riker still aren't speaking to each other.

It began when Deanna attended the Halloween cosume party on the Enterprise in a revealing outfit as Elvira, Mistress of the Dark. Riker tried to cover her up, Deanna said she could come as who she liked and from that point it all got nasty.

Right now, they won't talk to each other on the Bridge, but only tell me to tell the other. What will happen when we get an attack by aliens is beyond me!


"We've got to do something, Jean-Luc." Bev says to me, "We can't let this go on. Deanna and Will have to be put together again. It's bad for Bridge morale."

"I agree, Bev." I reply, "But how can we do it?"

"There may be a way." Beverly answers with a sly look, "But I'm not sure if it would work."

"I'll try anything." I tell her, "I'm tired of being the go-between when they want to talk to each other."

"This is what we do." Bev decides, "You go to Will and say he has a visitor in Room 4X1. I will go to Deanna and tell her the same thing."

"Room 4X1 is a secure room." I tell her with an understanding voice, "It may work."


We call them both on the Com, and Bev and myself hide round the corner. Soon, we see Deanna approaching.

She enters the room and Riker comes in not far behind and also goes in the room.

"LOCK!" Bev shouts, and the two of us rush forward to seal it.

At first there are cries of "Let us out of here!!" for a few minutes, then the tone changes, and the two of them are exchanging insults. Bev and I are listening at the door.

"It doesn't sound like it's going too well." I remark.

"Give it time, Jean-Luc." Beverly replies, "Just give it time."

After a few more minutes of barbed insults, it all goes very quiet.

"Maybe they've killed each other?" I comment.

"I don't think so." Bev answers, and we move to unlock the door.

Bev and I get a little embarrassed, as we witness Riker and Deanna in heavy kissing mode. I give a discreet cough, which stops them.

"Err, sorry, Captain." Riker says as he puts his jersey back on, "Deanna and I had decided to make up after our little disagreement."

"So I see." I comment sarcastically.

Deanna giggles. Riker kisses her again and the two of them leave the room.

"Yes, Will" I overhear Deanna say, "I'll put that Elvira outfit on for you tonight."

"Well done, Bev." I whisper to her, "Peace is again restored on the Enterprise."

Monday, November 02, 2009

Deanna's Tiff (Part One)

What a relief the Halloween party is over.

I mean I thought it was going to be a lot of fun, but Deanna decided to come dressed as Elvira, Mistress of the Dark.

There were lots of wolf whistles, and Riker rushed forward to cover her with his Dracula cape. The two of them then had an argument outside.

"I'll come as who I like!" Deanna had shouted at him, with us all pretending not to listen outside.

"You virtually don't have a costume on!" replied Riker, "This isn't a Betazoid wedding where everybody turns up naked!"

"You don't have to worry about that, Will Riker!" Deanna stormily said, "There won't be a wedding between us!"

"What do you mean?" he replied.

"It's obvious." she sniffed, "I can't have you ordering me about like this."

With that she walked off.


Now it's the morning and I'm in the Captain's chair, waiting to see what has happened. All the others on the bridge are casually chatting when the door opens and Riker comes in, looking sullen.

Everybody suddenly stops talking.

"Morning, sir." he says quietly.

"Morning, Number One." say I reply, "I hope that..."

Before I can continue, the Bridge doors slide open and Deanna comes out, with her hair arranged badly. She doesn't say anything but sits down at my left side. After a few minutes of silence, she turns to me.

"Captain." she says, "Would you kindly ask Commander Riker if he thinks my hairstyle and outfit is plain enough for his approval?"

"Counselor..." I begin.

"Captain." Riker interrupts, "Will you kindly inform Counselor Troi that I consider her appearance more than plain enough!"

I feel Deanna's fury start to increase.

This can't go on!

To be continued....