Episode 54: “Let Slip the Cats of War”
Written by Swordtail
Published January 21, 2008
Scene 1 - The trusty camera pans around the Utopia Planitia shipyards, orbiting Mars. All is normal, except it’s far busier than normal. Hundreds if not thousands of Federation starships are parked in lines or in docking bays, while tens of thousands of maintenance drones swarm around them, transporting equipment and personnel to and from the idle vessels. The camera pans along until it reaches what must obviously be the Ninth Fleet, since it includes of the USS Celestial, USS Solaris, USS Enterprise, USS Saratoga, USS Citadel, USS Halfass, and the USS Litterbox.
Fleet Admiral Spot (voiceover) - Chief of Defence Staff’s log, stardate 60067.1. We once again find ourselves preparing for war. Holy shit there’s a lot of ships out my window... oh right, log. Anyway, I’ve been so busy that I haven’t had time to record one of these for over two weeks. So here’s what happened:
The scene fades away and then fades in. In some courtroom somewhere, the words “Almost three weeks ago” pan by. Chester, his paws locked in restraints, sits before a council consisting of Fleet Admiral Spot, the Federation President, and a bunch of nameless judges.
Judge #1 - Chester the Evil Cat, you have been found guilty of numerous counts of murder, money laundering, greed, grand theft starship, grand theft auto, owning Grand Theft Auto, public intoxication, high treason, inciting rebellion, crushing rebellions without proper diplomatic protocols, violating the Prime Directive, the Temporal Prime Directive, and about every other directive we can possibly make up. You have been found guilty of break and entry, genocide, use of weapons of mass destruction, collaborating with our enemies, telling a child Santa Claus doesn’t exist, and escaping from prison at least twice. Also, most seriously, you have been found guilty of infecting the SubNET with malicious programs twice now.
Chester - Heh, fool you once, shame on me. Fool you twice...
Judge #1 - You are hereby sentenced to the highest form of punishment we can possibly think of that comes close to satisfying the Klingons to the point where we don’t have to waste the deuterium to go give you to them: Death.
Chester - WHAT!?!
Judge #2 - Since you managed to cure yourself of a fatal disease, we see no alternative but to execute you on the grounds that you’re bound to escape... again.
Chester - You can’t do that! The Federation is against capital punishment!
President - What the Federation doesn’t know won’t hurt them.
Judge #3 - Your execution is scheduled for three days from tomorrow, seeing as we have no major line ups. The method of execution will be vaporization by particle weapon. Your atoms will then be tossed into the nearest black hole, and we will then find a way to toss that into another black hole several million years from now when we get that kind of technology.
Chester looks shocked beyond belief.
Chester - But... but... Spot!
Spot (grinning evilly) - See you around... Chester.
Two burly Starfleet security officers come in and drag Chester away kicking and screaming.
Spot - That was fun...
The camera pans out of the room and up into the sky of Earth.
Spot (voiceover) - ...And that should have been that... however...
Camera goes to Lieutenant Tener’s quarters, in the middle of the night. Tener suddenly bolts awake, eyes wide.
Tener - IT’S THE ATTACK OF THE RADIOACTIVE MUTANT ZOMBIE BORG NONAMES FROM THE BOTTOM OF DECK 20!!!! AAHHHHH!
Open-source credits. Free to modify and redistribute. Use for commercial gain is prohibited.
Scene 2 - Somewhere in space, for no other reason than dramatic effect.
Spot (voiceover) - Well, turns out he was right. Apparently, blowing up their entire planet with enough power to rip open subspace didn’t destroy them. So naturally... I had to bite the bullet and do what I knew was gonna happen the second that stupid court adjourned...
Camera goes to a high security jail cell. Admiral Spot and the Federation President walk into the room. Security guards stand at every corner, and in the middle of the room is Chester, inside one of those cat-carriers which you can buy at Walmart for less than $50.
Chester (grinning) - Well, well, well... fancy seeing you here.
Spot - I take it you know why we’re here?
Chester - Hmm... let me think... either you’ve decided to release me out of the goodness of your hearts, or the zomborg ship has entered the Alpha Quadrant.
President - Tell us everything you know.
Chester - You’re lucky. They would have been here sooner, but they did a little side trip into the Delta Quadrant.
President - Why?
Chester - Ever heard of the Kobali?
Spot - Oh... no...
Chester - Yesssss...
Spot - You of course realize they don’t need you anymore, now that they have Kobali reanimation technology?
President - What?
Spot - The Kobali have the ability to reanimate dead no-names, with such efficiency that it actually results in them getting names. The zomborgs may now be invincible. Or incredibly easy to kill by the end of the episode, it’s hard to say.
Chester - Actually they just wanted a way to repair their degraded synaptic pathways. The nano-probes inside them will by now have made their brains so efficient that the 30 billion maximum population thing no longer applies. They’ll try to infect the entire galaxy.
President - Can someone please explain this in words I can understand?
Spot - The damn Borg zombies are going to assimilate us all!
President - That sounds bad. Define “us all.”
Chester - Everyone! The entire galaxy! Bwah ha ha ha!
The guards raise their phaser rifles and point them at Chester.
Chester - I know, I know, no evil laughing...
Spot - We have to assemble the entire fleet, and get the Romulans, the Cardassians, and the Klingons and everyone else we can get to help us, and find a way to stop the zomborg invasion.
Chester - Won’t do you any good... because only I know what planet they’re going to attack first.
Spot - And you’ll only tell us once we release you.
Chester - Exactly.
Spot (sigh) - It figures.
The camera pulls out of the room and zooms over to Mars and several weeks into the future.
Spot (voiceover) - So that’s the story. Now, with the entire Alpha Quadrant amassing their forces to fend off the incoming invasion, I must do the unpleasant task of briefing every... fricking... ship...
The camera goes to the Celestial’s briefing room. All senior staff are present, as are Admiral Spot and Admiral Nelix.
Spot - ...And that’s about what we know.
Genocide - For crying out loud, doesn’t anything kill these fuckers?
Commander Senseless - We’ll just have to try something new—
Lieutenant-Commander Genocide - Something new? Something new?!? We detonated an Omega particle right on top of them, we ripped open subspace all around them! What possibly haven’t we tried that could work?
Nelix - I’m no expert on blowing things up, but it seems to me that if you hit something with enough energy, adaptive or not, it’s going to melt, boil, or ionize eventually.
Tener - So what are we going to do? Just throw brute force at them and hope it works?
Captain Righteous - I like this plan. It’s easy to remember.
Lieutenant Sa’lol - Has anyone tried coming up with a retrovirus to disable the biological part of the viroids?
Doctor Puker - Tried and failed. They’ve adapted to everything I’ve tried. Sorry, no pulling a rabbit out of a hat this time.
Ensign Casey - Like, I never understood that saying: Why would you ever need to pull a rabbit out of a, like, hat? Like, why would a rabbit be in there, like, in the first place?
Lieutenant-Commander Baque - And why are those speech therapy lessons I ordered you to take not working?
Spot - Enough! I don’t have all day! We’re going to run this like we did the Battle of Bajor. You’ll get a couple little ships to boss around and use as cannon fodder. Any questions?
Lieutenant-Commander Garell - How about we just pack everyone into ships and leave the galaxy? Come back after they’ve gotten bored with only pre-warp species?
Spot - Alright, how do you propose we move hundreds of trillions of people?
Garell - Hey, we only have to move a little over a trillion. Let the other powers worry about themselves. Now, it might be a little cramped but I think we’ll all fit.
Spot - No.
Lieutenant Blavik - Do we know how many zomborg ships are coming?
Spot - Two, maybe three. We’re not sure. Probably those pyramid ships you fought last time.
Baque - Greeeeeeeeeat...
Spot - Now, just do your best and remember: The entire of known space is counting on you not screwing this up too badly. Spot to Litterbox, two to transport.
Spot and Nelix are beamed away. The Celestial crew look around at each other. Finally, Righteous just shrugs and they all get up and leave the room.
Scene 3 - Meanwhile, on the USS Litterbox, Spot and Nelix step down off the transporter pad.
Nelix - We’re really screwed, aren’t we?
Spot - Nothing we do kills them, and even if we can, they just come back to life and keep coming. Nothing can stop the virus once it’s infected someone. Topping it all off, Starfleet’s insurance company just decided that fleet-wide destruction by super-ships isn’t covered by the standard plan.
Nelix - Well, can’t you buy the premium plan?
Spot - I’m not paying for that! Do you know how much it costs per year? Besides, think about it: If a fleet-wide destruction of ships happens, who will be left behind to collect the pay-out?
Nelix - Good point. How many ships are the Klingons sending?
Spot - Their entire defence fleet, 23,000 strong. But keep in mind most of those are those shitty Bird-of-Prey’s which even the USS Halfass could blow to pieces.
Nelix - Um...
Spot - Okay, that’s a bit farfetched, I’ll admit.
Nelix - So we’ve got nearly 9,000, mostly larger vessels, and the Romulans are sending another 3,000 warbirds, and I think the Cardies are tossing in another 500 of their ships.
Spot - You know, I always was in favour of preventing them from fully rearming after the war, but now I’m not so sure about that decision...
Nelix - What’s this I hear about the Breen sending a few ships too?
Spot - Oh yeah, we managed to squeeze a couple hundred out of them. They won’t make it to the staging area before the invasion starts so we had to buy them some time.
Nelix - How did you manage that?
Spot - Oh, we have our ways...
The camera goes to a solar system somewhere and watches as two massive zomborg pyramid ships drop out of hyperwarp and proceed at impulse. The camera follows them as they pass and a big Starfleet Standard Issue billboard can be seen with the words “Triskelion: Right this way. All the brains you can eat!”
Scene 4 - At some pointless, backwater, low-importance Federation planet, the sky is filled with the perpetual light of tens of thousands of starships dropping out of warp. The camera rotates around. Four Defiant-class ships, three Birds-of-Prey, and two of those small Cardassian ships fly by in formation. The camera follows them as they pass in front of rows of dozens of small ships of various origin. Behind those are the medium sized ones, including the USS Solaris and USS Citadel. On Solaris’ bridge, Lieutenant Frell, the Bolian helm girl, is looking at the viewscreen which is almost full of ships.
Frell - Man... no good is going to come of this.
The camera flies out of Solaris and moves behind it, to where the larger battle cruisers are parked, including the Galors, Keldons, Sovereigns, Valdores, and the USS Celestial. Behind those are the larger, slower moving ships which will just get in the way, including the Breen dreadnoughts, the Galaxy-class ships, and the D’deridex warbirds, as well as the USS Litterbox. Onboard the Litterbox, the ship is at red alert, no-names are manning the tactical stations, and Spot is ripping the stuffing out of her chair. Captain Spot Jr. Is looking back and forth between the viewscreen and his mother.
Spot Jr. - Mom, do you mind not clawing up my ship?
Spot - Sorry... nervous habit.
Spot Jr. - You haven’t sent the signal yet, have you?
Spot - We don’t need to send the damn signal. We’ve got so many ships our collective mass has caused the planet’s moon to fall out of orbit. We’ve had to activate our antigravity thrusters just to keep from falling into each other. I’d like to see two ships, no matter how big and powerful, get through this blockade.
Spot Jr. - Um... what if they go around? You do realize we’ve left Earth, Romulus, Qo’noS, and Cardassia undefended, right?
Spot - Uh... now come on, I’ve explained this a dozen times before: Everyone in the universe likes to watch big space battles. They come here even if it’s well off their path.
Spot Jr. - Well, lucky us.
No-Name #1 - Here they come...
Spot (hitting a button) - This is the USS Litterbox to all ships... bring your anti-assimilation beam shield modifications online. As soon as you have a clear shot, fire at will, and don’t spare the nadions... and try not to hit each other, okay?
No-Name #1 - All ships report ready enough.
Spot - ...So like a thousand other commanders on a thousand other battlefields, I wait for the dawn.
FLASH! The two zomborg ships drop out of warp and the intensity of the Cherenkov radiation nearly blinds everyone on the bridge.
Spot Jr. - Wow... that dawn sure is bright.
The camera goes to the Celestial’s bridge, where the entire bridge staff, plus Lieutenant-Commander Garell, are present.
Genocide - I’ve got a clear shot.
Senseless - Pulse phasers, tricobalt torpedoes, and whatever else you can think of, fire!
The camera flies out of the ship and watches as the armada opens fire. Phaser beams, disruptor blasts, energy dampening weapons, and too many torpedoes to count slam into the two zomborg ships. The explosion is so intense that it momentarily hides the two ships behind a cloud of ionized gas. On the Celestial’s bridge.
Righteous - Did we get them?
Sa’lol - Don’t know. Sensors are being blocked by the radiation.
Genocide - We just emptied half of our complement of quantum torpedoes into them, as did about 800 other ships. I’d say we got them.
Casey - Like, think again...
On the viewscreen, the static stops flickering in and out and through the cloud of dust and ships explosions can be seen.
Baque - Oh, don’t tell me we now have to fight the Romulans and the Breen... stupid backstabbing...
On the screen, ships can be seen trying to get out of the way, as even more explosions detonate somewhere past the lines of panicking vessels. As a Sovereign-class ship finishes crossing the screen, a break in the lines allows the crew to see a massive wall of blueish-black metal heading towards them, plowing through everything in its past. A Galor-class starship gets run over and destroyed against the zomborg ship’s hull.
Righteous - Get us out of here!!!
Baque - Aye sir, getting us out of here.
The Celestial swings around and manages to get out of the way with only a few metres to spare. The two zomborg ships, completely intact, continue past, smashing through unlucky nameless starships as they pass. The camera goes to the Litterbox’s bridge.
No-Name #1 - Oh Jesus Christ they’re not stopping!
Spot Jr. - Helm, hard to port!
Spot (watching as the pyramid shaped ship fills the screen) - Oh, this is gonna hurt.
WHAM! The Litterbox’s rear section isn’t quick enough and is struck. The nacelles are both sheared off and the rest of the ship goes spinning, spewing plasma, air, and a year’s supply of Meow Mix from the various holes. On the bridge, cats, no-names, debris, and issues of Time magazine are flying across the room.
No-Name #2 - Stabilizers offline!
No-Name Cat #1 - Structural integrity failing!
No-Name #1 - The warp core is going critical!
Meanwhile, the crew of the USS Celestial are watching as the Federation’s flagship spins out of control, pieces breaking off at random.
Righteous - Me thinks we should help them?
Senseless - Looks like no one else is competent enough to. Signal the Saratoga, Citadel, Solaris, and Enterprise. Drop shields and move us to within transporter range. Tell sickbay to prepare for massive numbers of causalities.
Genocide - Heh, would it be so bad if we didn’t make it in time?
Garell - Knowing Admiral Spot, she’d find a way to survive just to kick our asses for the rest of our soon to beveryshortlivesLOOK OUT!
WHAM! A piece debris smashes into the Celestial’s port bow prong, nearly taking it off in the process. Meanwhile, in sickbay, Dr. Puker and Lieutenant Blavik have just received the news.
Puker - Massive casualties? What the heck does that mean?
BZZZZZZZT! About 50 injured no-names materialize in sickbay.
Puker (rolling his eyes) - Of course, couldn’t wait till I finished my coffee... Alright, Nurse, nameless blueshirts, start treating, as fast as you can!
The medical team sprints into action, whipping out tricorders lightening fast, then catching the medical attachments as they fly off the ends.
No-Name #3 (scanning a patient) - Second degree burns over 80% of the body. You’ll live for a few minutes.
He yanks the injured red-shirt up by her arm, spins her around, and kicks her in the direction of the door.
No-Name #3 - Next!
Puker (applying a dermal regenerator to another injured crewman) - Major lacerations... no time to be thorough.
He manages to stop the bleeding, even though the no-name still looks like he’s been thrown through a jet engine. Puker shoves the patient off the biobed and turns to the line behind him.
Puker - Who’s next?
All the would-be patients look hesitant. In another part of sickbay, Blavik is operating on a yellow-shirt. Puker comes over to check on her.
Blavik - He has a major spinal fracture and it looks like his lungs have been punctured. I’m applying anaprobaline and am about to begin tissue regeneration therapy. While that’s taking place I’ll hook him up to a respirator and-
Puker - Lieutenant, what the hell do you think you’re doing?
Blavik - I—
Puker - Are you colour blind? Look at the colour of his uniform! You’re wasting your time! Even a Q can’t possibly save this guy!
Blavik - Oh. My mistake.
The yellow-shirt flat-lines and Blavik turns to another no-name.
Puker - Honestly, don’t they teach you guys anything at the Academy anymore?
Scene 5 - One of the Celestial’s triage facilities. Righteous, Senseless, and Genocide walk into the room where blueshirts are tending to injured Litterbox crew. Fleet Admiral Spot is among them.
Spot - Oh, there you are. I’ve been stuck in here for the past half hour. What’s going on?
Righteous - Okay, before you get angry, I just want to point out this wasn’t my fault this time.
Senseless - Long story short, we lost. Big time.
Spot - That sounds bad.
Senseless - The zomborg ships totally ignored our fleet. They took up positions around the planet and fired their assimilation beams. Admiral Ross ordered the fleet to retreat.
Genocide - We didn’t even make a dent in them! They’ve been upgraded since we last met!
Spot - Perfect. Just perfect. So now they’ve got enough raw material to build hundreds of those ships, and we can’t even destroy two. Now, what happened to the Litterbox?
Righteous - Now, keep in mind this isn’t in any way my fault, because—
Genocide reaches into his pocket and pulls out a small piece of black metal, and throws it down in front of Spot.
Genocide - That’s the biggest piece we could find of it.
Spot just stares at the piece of metal.
Spot Jr. (From across the room) - You owe me a new ship, mom!
Spot - Son, I do believe its high time we sent out the signal...
Senseless - What signal?
Spot (sigh) - I always prayed that if one day I had to send out the signal, and if on that day I had to enlist the assistance of humanoids, I always prayed that the humanoids I enlisted would not be you.
Righteous - So about this signal thing...
Spot - Alright, this is going to be a loooooooooooong story...
Senseless - Somehow I don’t doubt it...
Scene 6 - Ancient Egypt, Earth. The camera pans around a collection of scaffolding surrounding a nearly finished cat body, of what will obviously someday become the Great Sphinx. The three pyramids can be seen in the background. All would be normal except atop each pyramid is a massive metallic vessel of some sort. It looks fairly simple in shape, consisting of a massive cylinder topped by an array of antennas and obvious weapons turrets. Sprouting from the sides of the cylinder in the middle of its length are eight long struts. At the end of each is a device resembling a warp nacelle, but not as long. As the camera watches, one of the ships lifts off on some kind of repulser engine. The ground shakes as the vessel moves, and the workers stop chipping away at the Sphinx for a moment to watch it rise. As it clears the top of the pyramid, the nacelles light up and the ship vanishes in a flash of light. A massive gust of air sweeps in to fill the leftover vacuum, and the workers go back to work. (And yes, I know I’m ripping off both Stargate and Battlestar Galactica.)
Spot (voiceover) - Almost five thousand years ago, your world was a much different one than it is now.
Baque (voiceover) - Gee, no shit.
Spot (voiceover) - Shut up, Commander, I’m trying to answer some long unanswered questions. Now where was I... oh yes... The race you know as Felis silvestris catus, or the common house cat, did not originate on Earth.
Sa’lol (you get the idea) - Genetic evidence would care to disagree.
Spot - God damn it you guys, I’ll explain that! Now, we were a nomadic race, having lost our own world in a supernova several years before. It was the one that formed the Cat’s Eye Nebula, which is about 3,300 lightyears away and blew up about 5,000 years ago.
Tener - Cat’s Eye Nebula... it figures.
Spot (sigh) - I’m just going to ignore you guys. Now, you may of course wonder why a race as advanced as ours choose to come to a backwater, primitive, barbaric planet such as yours...
Righteous - Bajor had warp technology by that time!
Baque - Nobody cares!
The camera zooms into a square. Palm leaves are being waved at a throne by scantily clad women and overly buff men. Sitting on the throne is a cat. His fur is adorned by jewels, his neck encircled by a golden necklace. He’s currently eating from a bowl.
Cat #1 (nom nom nom) - Wow, this is awesome caviar. We have got to get the recipe.
Another, larger cat walks up to him, flanked on either side by two other cats, each with dumb looking weapons strapped to their heads.
Cat #2 - Sir.
Cat #1 - Oh, I don’t like that look...
Cat #2 - The felines we detected on this world are non-sentient. We tried to enlist the assistance of a pack of them but they tried to eat us.
Cat #1 - Curses. What do we do now?
Cat #2 - I’ve spoken with the council. They believe humanity has great potential. They want to establish a colony on Earth.
Cat #1 - Double curses. That means we have to go into hiding, doesn’t it?
Cat #2 - Yes... If we flaunt our superior intellect around the humans, they might get jealous and resentful. If that happens, they might stop feeding us!
Cat #1 - But... what about my kingdom?
Cat #2 - Turn it over to the guy who cleans your litterbox.
Cat #1 - Khafra?
Cat #2 - Yeah. Him.
Cat #1 - Well, I’ll abide by the council’s wishes, but my statue is going to look really ugly when Khafra puts his face on it.
Cat #2 - Yeah... but they are humans, so we’ll have to just deal with their egos for a few thousand years.
The camera zooms up and away from the square and proceeds to fly up into space, where several of the cat-ships are orbiting the planet.
Spot (voiceover) - So, like had been done on countless other worlds throughout the galaxy, felines were seeded in groups throughout the biosphere. Mostly in places where the living would be good.
Camera zooms into China, where a box slams into the side of a mountain with enough force to level half a forest. 47 cats crawl out of the wreckage and look around at the ancient Chinese civilization.
Cat #3 - Wow! Look at the architecture! These people must be really advanced, by human standards, I’m sure we’ll love it here.
Meanwhile, two hunters were watching the cats leave the destroyed pod.
Hunter #1 (subtitled) - (What are those things?)
Hunter #2 - (Dunno. Never seen them before.)
Hunter #1 - (Think they taste good?)
Spot (voiceover, as the camera leaves Earth again) - And thus, cats were released into the untamed wilderness of Earth. Over millennia, we quickly adapted—
Sa’lol - Wait, there is historical evidence that cats were domesticated on Earth over 10,000 years ago. How do you explain that one, ma’am?
Spot - Can’t. Temporal Prime Directive.
Genocide - I’m starting to think Starfleet Command just made that directive up to act as a default answer for anything they don’t have a real answer to. Am I right, Admiral?
Spot - Can’t tell you. Temporal Prime Directive.
Genocide - Whatever...
Spot - Now, where was I... Oh right, our fleet left Earth. However, before they left, they inserted a dormant genetic sequence into the cats that were left behind. It was set so that when we first left Earth’s solar system, it would awaken the various memories necessary to contact and join the Feline Association of Influence, or whatever they used to call it way back then.
Senseless - O... kay...
Spot - So, for over five thousand years, we kept our mouths shut. And I must say we had to endure quite a lot of shit from you guys... mistreatment, spaying and neutering, having water thrown on us when we didn’t follow your fascist laws... that kind of thing.
Casey - Like, how were you, like, able to survive that long on a planet that, like, you hadn’t evolved on?
Spot - Using our superior intellect and our special mind control power.
Puker - Mind control power?
Spot - Purr.
Puker - Ah. That.
Spot - So, in the year 2099...
The camera zooms ahead several thousand years and goes to a starship which is about to jump to warp. On its small, cramped bridge, the crew sit pressing buttons. The captain sits with a cat in his lap.
Captain - Set course for Alpha Centauri, maximum warp!
Helmsman - Aye sir, engaging at warp 2.
Several hours pass...
Helmsman - We’ve just left the solar system, sir.
Suddenly, the cat perks up and looks around.
Cat - Meow meow purr meow HISS!!! (Wait a god damned minute... it’s all coming back to me... Oh you got to be shitting me! We nearly got rendered extinct in nuclear armageddon for these assholes?)
Spot - Um... unfortunately, all the felines on Earth had long since lost the ability to pronounce Terran languages, so no one understood a word we said for about 250 years, until advances in the Universal Translator allowed some of our insults to be recognized as more than mere meowing. And that should bring us up to about now I guess...
The camera goes back to the Celestial’s briefing room.
Righteous - That was a good story. It had a happy ending.
Spot - Well, besides the fact my race had to endure millennia of torture and suppression under the “care” of humanity, yeah, happy ending all around.
Genocide - That was a nice theory and all, but how does this help with our current situation?
Spot - Inside our genetic message were instructions on how to contact the entire Feline Association of Influence.
Tener - Yeah, you already told us that. Hey, just what is the Feline Association of Influence? We keep hearing about it but Wikipedia doesn’t have an entry for it.
Spot - Uh... I’m really not supposed to tell you guys this, but the FAI is essentially an underground cohort of feline races, consisting of members in positions of authority in mainstream galactic powers. In particular, the superpowers, like the Federation. I’m a member. We get a annual Christmas basket and discounts on all merchandise.
Garell - Wait... are you telling me that you’ve been secretly working for this association for... how long?
Spot - Secretly, no, I’ve mentioned it dozens of times. And, since I became an Admiral. Admiral Nelix and Chester are members too. So is Mittens. He’s actually trying to establish a foothold in the Beta Quadrant as we speak.
Genocide - You let Chester join?
Spot - Chester was part of it even before he became your recurring bad guy. Like it or not, he has quite a bit of power in this area of space so leaving him out would be stupid. However, since he’s being so evil, we’ve revoked the benefits. No annual Christmas basket for him!
She stops to catch her breath and looks around the table and the shocked expressions on everyone’s face.
Spot - Oh don’t be like that, the FAI has kept the peace among major powers for generations. We get to the top simply because we’re better than you guys at nearly everything. Then, once we have the power to make a difference, we keep the empires from killing each other.
Sa’lol - Let me guess... didn’t go so well with the Klingons, Cardassians, or the Romulans.
Spot - Nah, we’re still working on it.
Genocide - You still haven’t told us how this helps our situation with the zomborgs. And, we’re wasting time. They might have assimilated more planets by now, and we’ll not know until its too late unless we stop them here and now.
Spot - Alright, sheesh, hold your horses... Now, one of the underlying principles of the FAI is that any power that is being threatened by a non-FAI power can call upon the assistance of all the other powers being influenced by the FAI. Now, this has never been done in the entire history of the Association, but we’re facing a threat like no other.
Genocide - Well... except maybe the Borg...
Spot - Ah, they’re a bunch of pushovers anyway. Every time they attack they send one measly ship and try to pull some random plan out of their butts. Assimilate Picard? Go back in time? What are they, stupid? Oh wait, they’ve been only assimilating humanoids... ask question, get answer.
Everyone else just rolls their eyes.
Spot - So, now that you’re up to speed, I’ll be taking over your comm system for a few minutes.
She trots over to a control panel on the briefing table and hits some buttons.
Spot - Computer, this is Fleet Admiral Spot, authorization code meow damn it zero one alpha. Open a priority one communication with Vice Admiral Nelix, Jupiter Station, Sol System.
Computer - Transmitting...
The sound of a phone ringing can be heard. The camera goes to Jupiter Station, into Admiral Nelix’s office. Nelix is asleep on his desk, as his console beeps and flashes in front of him. He doesn’t stir. Camera goes back to the Celestial, where Spot is starting to look impatient.
Spot - Ah, for crying out loud. Computer, access Jupiter Station’s attitude thruster control systems.
Camera goes back to Nelix’s office, where the entire station suddenly lurches to the left. Nelix bolts awake with a hiss and jumps two metres into the air. He lands with a thud and Spot’s face appears on the monitor.
Spot - Wake up, admiral!
Nelix - What!?!
Spot - It all went to shit. The Litterbox is destroyed, the colony was assimilated, and the fleet didn’t even scratch the zomborg ships.
Nelix - Um... did the Celestial get destroyed too?
Righteous’ face comes into view.
Righteous - We’re all okay!
Nelix - Great, this all just hit rock bottom.
Spot - We’re in pretty bad shape, and we have no choice: Send the signal.
Nelix - Uh... is that wise?
Righteous - What does the signal do? Are you trying to ask the Prophets for help? Because I can do that for you, it’s no problem.
Nelix - I’ll just send the damn signal to end this conversation. Bye ma’am.
Nelix hits his comm off button. Then hacks up a key, sticks it into his console, and turns it. The sound of an internal combustion engine can be heard, then the camera goes outside the station and watches as the antennas begin transmitting signals. Don’t ask me how you’d know, just use your imagination or something. The camera jumps around the Federation to various stations, including the Spacedock, numerous starbases, the Midas Array, the Alpha Quadrant end of that stupid array Voyager fried, etc., etc. Back on the Celestial...
Spot - Now, I’ve got a very important mission for you guys.
Baque - Oh boy, here it comes...
Spot - Half the ships in that armada couldn’t even get a shot off because we were so packed in. Even if the entire FAI comes to our aid, there’s no guarantee we’ll win. There’s only one race out there that might stand a chance against them, and only one that once victorious might be beatable by us when they decide to turn on us.
Genocide - Crap, I can see where this is going...
Spot - I need you to go on behalf of the Feline Association of Influence and enlist the help of the Borg Collective.
Righteous, Casey, Garell, Senseless - What?!
Genocide, Baque, Tener - Saw that coming.
Sa’lol - Running headfirst into assimilation was not in the job description!
Blavik - Even attempting to contact the Borg would be highly illogical. We’d be assimilated or destroyed before they even responded to our hail.
Puker - Do you have any idea how hard it is to remove cybernetic implants from the body? Not your normal six- hour operation!
Spot - I’m sorry, but you’re the only ship fast enough to get there and back in time.
Baque - Where?
Spot - The Unicomplex.
Casey - Like, I thought that went boom and stuff?
Spot - It did, but we suspect they’ve repaired it by now.
Tener - Repaired it, and they’re probably more than a little irked that humans blew it up in the first place!
Spot - Look, the zomborg collective is as much a threat to them as it is to us. They’ll see that, and hopefully they already know about the problem. The hyperspace signal we sent out was broadcast throughout the galaxy on all carrier bands. Everyone should have heard it.
Genocide - Great, so everyone knows where Earth is now, thanks a lot, Admiral!
Spot - Don’t start that again. Now, Starfleet scientists think they’ve worked out most of the bugs in the quantum slipstream technology. It still needs to be tested of course, but—
Baque - You’re using us as lab rats to test out something that might blow us to kingdom come.
Spot - Um... yes.
Senseless - Shouldn’t we send a more powerful ship? Why not send the USS Enterprise?
Spot - They’re in Fluidic Space trying to convince the Sra’xa’diin to help us. And I suspect they’re doing a far better job than you idiots could so don’t get snarky and jealous.
Camera goes to Fluidic Space, where the Enterprise-E is flying around in circles trying to find Species 8472.
Picard (voiceover) - Captain’s log, stardate 60069.9. We are so lost right now...
Scene 7 - Main Engineering. Garell is walking around the warp core, checking consoles, reading PADDs, and checking on the work of incompetent no-names.
Garell - I have a really bad feeling about all this... here goes nothing. Eject the warp core!
The camera watches as the warp core shuts down, disconnects, and drops out the bottom of the ship. A maintenance pod quickly snatches it up and moves it away. Another pod moves another core into position beneath the ejection hatch. It looks slightly different than the normal one. In particular the reaction chamber is a bit taller than the other one and surrounded by those silly glowing bars that Voyager had on their slipstream core. Back in engineering...
Garell - Alright people, the new core is in place. You, activate the reintegration system.
A no-name yellow-shirt gives a nod and works a console. From somewhere up in the core housing, above deck 14, a tractor beam activates, fires down through the ship, and locks onto the waiting warp core. It slowly inches its way up into the ship until it reaches its proper position. The camera watches as the hatch at the bottom of the ship closes, then goes to various points throughout the stardrive and watches as locking mechanisms grab a hold of the slipstream core and lock it into place. In Main Engineering, the main plasma transfer conduits slide into place and seal against the sides of the core.
No-Name #4 - Core reintegration complete.
Garell - Activate the core!
No-names everywhere hit buttons and check readouts. Then, with a low hum, the new warp core lights up like a Christmas tree and comes to life.
Garell (sarcastically) - Oh perfect, it’s purple... Garell to bridge.
Righteous (comm) - What is it, blue woman?
Garell - The new core is online.
Righteous (comm) - Excellent. Now, what colour is it?
Garell - What?
Righteous (comm) - You heard me, what colour is it?
Garell - It’s purple.
Righteous (comm) - Ooh, that’s my favourite!
Garell (grinning) - Yeah, I kinda figured it would be.
Scene 8 - Messhall. Genocide, Garell, Baque, Sa’lol, and Tener are drowning their sorrows in alcohol.
Garell - We should, theoretically, have the slipstream drive online in an hour. We’re just running diagnostics. I don’t trust the morons who built the thing just by watching “Timeless” and copying the design.
Tener - You know, there’s no guarantee that even with the Borg’s help, assuming we can even get it, that we can still defeat the radioactive mutant zombie Borg no-names from the bottom of deck 20. Plus, we still have that planet they assimilated to deal with.
Genocide - I still can’t believe they survived that explosion. Now I know how the guys on Stargate felt when they went up against the Ori.
Sa’lol - As adaptive as they are, they’re probably still vulnerable to the antimatter in our torpedoes. If only we could find a way to penetrate their shields...
Baque - I think we’ll need a lot more antimatter if we’re going to destroy them.
Sa’lol - We’d need enough to destroy a planet, and I don’t think there’s that much in the entire Federation.
Casey, who had come in a minute earlier, walks over.
Casey - Hey, I, like, have an idea!
Baque - This out to be good.
The officers sitting at the table roll their eyes and all start to take a drink at the same time, trying to ease the pain they normally get when talking with Casey.
Casey - Like, antimatter inversion bombs!
Garell, Genocide, Tener, Sa’lol, and Baque spit their drinks all over each other and nearly fall out of their chairs in shock. They regain their composure and look wide-eyed at each other.
Garell - Ensign, you’re a genius! I never thought I’d say those words!
They all jump up and straighten their uniforms.
Genocide - To the bridge!!!
Garell, Genocide, Baque, Tener, and Sa’lol run out of the messhall as fast as they can, knocking over several no-names in the process, leaving a bewildered Casey looking confused.
Casey - I have no idea what they were talking about...
Scene 9 - Bridge. All the senior staff are present once Casey and the five half-soaked officers walk in.
Genocide - Commander, think you could drop some of us off at Bajor on the way to the Delta Quadrant?
Senseless - Why?
Genocide - Antimatter inversion bombs! The solution to all our troubles!
Puker - You want to solve this crisis by using the most powerful explosive device known to exist?
Genocide - Wow, when you say it like that it sounds even better!
Senseless - Fine, worth a shot I guess. Oh, meet our FAI liaison. He’ll be coming with us.
Righteous turns around holding Mittens, the large, tough-looking tabby cat.
Mittens - Hello, Commander Genocide...
Genocide - AHHH!!!
He runs for the turbolift as fast as he can go.
Righteous - Whatever that was about... now, helmboy, set a course for Bajor, slipstream velocity!
Baque - Yes, sir, this should be fun.
He taps some buttons.
Garell - Wait, it’s not ready yet!
Baque - Slipstream in 4... 3... 2... 1...
Nothing happens. Then the Master Systems Display console explodes and kills three no-names.
Garell - God damn it...