<USS Banshee> "Clues" Pt. 2
- From: "Brad Ruder" <GroundZero@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
- To: ussbanshee@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
- Date: Tue, 16 Sep 2003 22:45:29 -0700
?Clues? ? Part Two
by Lieutenant Joshua
Trading a shift with Thomas Lark was
like selling your soul to the devil himself. It wasn?t that Tom had
horns, a pointed tail, or a pitchfork that was set instantly aflame
the minute that his temper overflowed, no, it was more like he?d
never let you forget it until the second you fulfilled the
?Remember that time that I took your shift,? Thomas
would say when he wanted some time in the holodeck, or to be allowed
to fly with the Shoguns on a training run. He was training run
certified, but it was still a hassle and inconvenience to ask a pilot
to give up his or her spot.
Joshua Asper and Thomas Lark were
in the middle of a torpedo tube diagnostic and recalibration and were
snugly fitted in a jefferies tube. Tom turned to Josh in the middle
of a debate and tossed his tools ever so eloquently into the toolkit,
?I think I?m going to leave now.?
?You?re not leaving until I
say you?re leaving, Ensign.?
?Remember when I
Josh shoved a PADD into Tom?s hand, ?Modify the loading
parameters to fit an object of this size into the launching
Tom?s eyes danced across the information and his
eyebrows perked as he finished reading it, ?Why? The torpedoes are
much larger and much wider than you have specified here. Is there a
new project at the Tactical Command Research Facility that I?m not
?No, Tom, those are your parameters. If you don?t
stop your whining I?m going to shove you in there and launch you out
of the torpedo tube.? Josh smiled and finished the reset of the EM
relays passing through the torpedo systems, ?Now, we?re done so
you?re more than welcome to leave.?
?Fine,? Tom said with a
grumpy look on his face, ?I didn?t want to be your friend anyway. I
guess I?ll see you at the next poker game then??
?Yes, when you lose even more to me. I do have one favor to ask of
you Tom. I can?t go into details, but I?m covering a shift for
Lieutenant Paulson tomorrow night and something has come up and I
desperately need to have that night free. So??
owe me a shift, Josh.?
?Well, I?ll owe you two,
Tom looked down the baron tube and then back at Josh,
who had thrown on his puppy dogface that man nor woman could ignore.
Tom smiled, ?I?m going to pull that lip up and over your head. Yes,
I?ll take your shift.?
?Thanks, Tom, you?re a lifesaver. I
owe you one.?
Josh smirked and he continued on
down the tunnel while Lark backtracked the way they had initially
come. Josh couldn?t go into details obviously about Telsia and her
encounter with the abusive monster that was her husband. He?d
decided to step in and play the part of Eric and watch Cameron while
Telsia was pulling her shift in Engineering.
were a bit less crowded and loud than they usually were, but the
shifts weren?t supposed to trade for another five minutes. The doors
hissed open and Telsia flew past him. ?Thanks, got to jet or I?ll be
They closed and Josh smiled, waved a hand to no one in
particular, and laughed, ?Hey Telsia. How was your day? Oh, thanks,
mine was excellent.? He shook his head and picked up the boy who was
standing in the middle of the floor with a replica of the USS
Banshee. He flew it around and made a buzzing sound that only a
child could pull off.
?Hey there, bud, do you want to fly
Hoisting the small child
above his head Josh flew him around. Among fits of laughter and his
own buzzing sounds came the sound of the communication terminal on
the desk behind him. He dropped the child down into his arms and
walked over to it, tapping the button gingerly attempting to keep the
young boy somewhat amused.
The young face of his brother
popped onto the screen. It took a fraction of a second for the cadet
to realize and understand the child in Josh?s arms and his eyes
widened noticeably. ?I know we haven?t talked in that long Josh, but
I know that it hasn?t been THAT long.?
?Cameron this is
Jerrad; he?s my little brother.? Josh?s words echoed lifelessly as
the toddler returned to his antics of waving a toy starship around.
Josh sat him on the floor and he scurried away to the couch and table
where he could support himself in case he fell. ?He?s not mine, but
I?m watching him for a friend.?
?And here I was going to say
that he had your eyes.?
?Yeah, I see what
I see.? Jerrad scratched his neck, ?So what has been happening in my
big brother?s life? Something productive I hope??
his head, ?No, not really. It?s been the same since the last time we
talked. Poker nights every week, running with Castillo in the
mornings, and going to work every day; you know, rowing with the
Jerrad nodded his understanding, ?Yeah, tell me about
it. I have the worst classes, but I?m dealing with them. I?m into
some intense physical athletics programs. It?s actually quite a pain
in the ass because we?re running at four in the morning along the
beach. Nice views, but it?s cold as all get out.?
know, I?ve been there. Keeping your grades up??
?Don?t even Jerrad.?
His face went blank,
?What? Mom says the same thing.?
?She SAID the same thing.
She?s not around anymore Jerrad. If you mess things up you have no
one to blame but yourself and there isn?t going to be any place for
you to go because there isn?t a home on Kessik IV anymore.? Josh?s
hands clenched into a fist, but slowly relaxed as he got his emotions
back in check.
Jerrad bobbed his head, ?I know, Josh, I was
just making a joke. I know that mom is gone. I know probably more
than everyone. Whenever I do something good I want to call her and
tell her what I?ve accomplished. Only to realize, in a blunt moment
of complete incompetence, that the only people I can call is Olivia
?And I?m what? Chopped up Targ??
never around. I can never seem to catch you.? Jerrad seemed to
becoming angry and it was a sign that Josh had seen in himself so
many times before and knew what it led to. ?I don?t know how to
?I understand exactly what you?re saying, though.
Jerrad, to be honest, you have the same outlook on me that I had on
dad when I was younger.? Josh would admit to most people that he had
a rocky relationship with his father and it hadn?t gotten back on
track until the end of his father?s life.
Jerrad from off-screen. Jerrad said a couple of inaudible words and
turned back to Josh, ?I?m going to go running with Bree. I?ll see
you later and I?ll try and contact you later ? try being the keyword
in that sentence.? With a wink the transmission was
?Who?s Bree?? Josh smiled and rubbed his neck. He
swiveled in the chair and the room was empty. He perked an eyebrow
as he fell to his knees and scoured underneath the couches and behind
the chairs. Josh rubbed his chin, ?Computer, locate Cameron
?Cameron Moore is in Lieutenant Joshua Asper?s
quarters.? The computer responded matter-of-factly.
seek? I see. Well, Cameron, ready or not ? here I come.?
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