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What Plans?


Mrs P

Attention please!
It's me again,
The Alien Yeoman Beauty.
I've a tale to tell,
Of the Enterprise
At the end of a tour of duty.

The ship docked in at Starbase Nine, prepared for R and R,
As usual several light years overdue.
We needed to recover in a well stocked star base bar
From all the trials which Starfleet put us through.
For boldly going crewmen, the work had been routine,
The past few months had been like all the rest;
We'd travelled out beyond the stars, where none had been before,
And volunteered for every crazy quest.

The engines stopped, the ship was docked! We stared in disbelief,
For once, our route had not been rearranged.
We'd learned to take no notice when a shore leave was announced
As nine times out of ten the plans were changed.
We often nearly reached our goal, before they turned us back,
And sent us on some peril-laden trip.
It always seemed a bit unfair that when disaster struck
We always seemed to be the nearest ship.

We'd risked our lives a thousand times for Justice, Truth and Love,
Brought lasting peace to age-old warring nations.
We'd found the cure for deadly plagues, defeated evil foe,
Shipped countless hordes of Starfleet delegations.
We'd bravely saved the Galaxy from all-consuming threats,
Seen several mad dictators overthrown,
And when it got too dull for us we'd livened up the scene,
By taking short-cuts through the Neutral Zone.

The Enterprise was battered from her missions (see above),
And needed several weeks to be repaired.
A ship-wide call from Captain Kirk confirmed what we had hoped,
A state of recreation was declared.
We all drew lots for shore leave groups, prepared to hit the town.
I packed my most revealing cocktail dress,
And tried to look astonished when I drew the Captain's team;
I'd bribed the man in charge with great success.

We headed for the Star base bar, intent on wine and song,
The Captain, me, Uhura and McCoy.
The Vulcan followed close behind, a long night stretched ahead,
The prospect wasn't filling him with joy.
He found it most illogical to spend his time this way,
Instead of in some quiet meditation.
We found it more illogical that, when James Kirk had asked,
He hadn't quite refused the invitation.

We found the bar, and stepped inside, the Vulcan looked around,
And wished his turn for leave had been postponed.
He saw bedraggled tribbles far too drunk to multiply,
And half a dozen Hortas getting stoned.
Inebriated beings from a hundred different worlds
Were propping up the bar, or on the floor.
His eyebrows rose to record heights, when Kirk announced with glee,
"It's just the sort of place we're looking for!"

We made our way across the room, to find some empty seats,
Avoiding toppled chair and drunken Horta.
A round of "Supernovas" was insisted on by Kirk,
Ignoring Vulcan pleas for Altair water.
We sat and watched the world go by, the alcohol flowed free,
Sang bawdy songs, watched dancing girls gyrating.
The Vulcan soberly observed his shipmates hard at play,
Concluding we were mad - but fascinating.

Meanwhile, at the Star base docks, a second ship appeared,
An ancient battered cruiser shipping freight.
It hobbled in, a rusty heap, a scarred and creaking hulk,
A vessel several decades out of date.
With shipping marks obscured by grime, its origin was blurred,
It docked beside the Starship Enterprise.
And none who saw its sorry state saw through the rust and grime,
An old Orion slave ship in disguise.

The man called "Time!" we staggered up, bade new found friends farewell,
The Vulcan led our way across the floor.
Combined effects of brandy, and Romulan brewed ale,
Had made it pretty hard to find the door.
We swayed across the dancing floor, a lot the worse for wear,
The Vulcan (bless him!) calm and dignified.
Despite the four of us in tow, a merry drunken group,
He managed to maintain his Vulcan pride.

We reached the door, a shadow fell, and tall strangers blocked our path.
We glanced behind, the crowds had disappeared.
A group of huge Orions moved towards us, looking mean.
Our alcohol-fogged senses quickly cleared.
The Captain gave a stirring speech, to try and talk them round,
We females, as expected, sobbed and wailed
The Vulcan tried pure logic next; the Doctor raved and swore,
But still they kept advancing; we had failed!

We slowly backed across the floor, our chance of rescue slim
Our ship's communicators left behind
A peaceful conversation or a friendly little drink
Was not what these Orions had in mind.
The odds were quite uneven, we didn't have a hope
Of spoiling these Orion pirates' fun.
My last clear recollection was of five Orion smiles
And five Orion phasers set on stun.

Meanwhile at the Star base docks, on board the Enterprise,
Repairs were going smoothly, just as planned.
The Scottish engineer in charge had even found the time
To give a nearby freighter ship a hand.
A rusting hulk had hailed his ship, requesting his advice
On quick repairs to helm and navigation
He'd solved their problems, earned their thanks, then watched their ship depart,
And wondered at its freight and destination.

I woke on board a moving ship, my senses slowly cleared.
I looked around, my heart was beating fast.
Close by, my four companions stirred, and struggled to their feet.
We could not tell what length of time had passed.
'Twas dark and cold and sinister inside our prison cell,
We were thirsty, tired and cold and hadn't eaten.
The Captain tried to cheer us up (his second stirring speech),
Declaring that his crew could not be beaten.

Meanwhile, at the Star base docks, a Starfleet call came through,
With Kirk on leave it went to Mr Scott.
"We need your help quite urgently; some Vital Plans have gone,
We think there is some dark and evil plot!
The thieves escaped on board a ship, a rusting, damaged hulk.
It must not reach its final destination.
We think it's heading out your way - you must retrieve those plans.
It's up to you to save the Federation!"

The Scottish engineer turned pale, recalled the recent help
He'd given to a hulk with unknown freight.
Not only had he watched them leave, without a second thought
He'd also helped the foe to navigate.
His accent growing more pronounced (this happened under stress),
He called the shore leave parties back to work.
They'd all returned within the hour, except for one small group,
Including Spock, McCoy and Captain Kirk.

Back inside the prison cell, our lot had not improved,
We found that breaking jail could be quite hard.
McCoy had faked a dread disease; his cries had been ignored,
And Spock had failed to 'hypnotise' a guard,
No lovely lady warder passed, so Kirk could win her heart,
We'd no transponder crystals in our skin,
No friendly rebel help appeared, the prison bars stood firm,
Our hopes of reaching home again were thin.

The hours ticked by, a key was turned, the cell door opened wide,
A huge Orion pirate crossed the floor.
"It's useless to resist," he boomed, "you must accept defeat.
I'll tell you what your future has in store.
The ladies will be sold as slaves; the men will dig our mines,
A different fate awaits the Vulcan's brain;
We'll find it quite invaluable for running life support."
He frowned at our response of "Not again!"

He turned to where we females sat, and ordered us to move,
He praised our flawless skin and perfect features.
Despite James Kirk's objections, he led us to the door.
"Our leader must inspect these lovely creatures!"
We had to leave our friends behind; the door was firmly shut,
He led us to the centre of the ship.
He made the false assumption we were helpless little things,
We waited for his vigilance to slip.

Meanwhile at the Star base docks, the crew were quite concerned,
A search for Kirk and Co was underway.
The Scottish engineer was torn, upset at missing friends,
But keen to chase the hulk without delay.
He compromised - a group beamed down, to check Kirk's likely haunts;
The Star base bar, the hotel rooms, the jail
While Chekov started scanning where the rusting hulk had parked,
Attempting to locate her ion trail.

Back on board the pirate ship, I told our prison guard
I suffered from a serious complaint.
I held my head and moaned a lot, then caught Uhura's eye,
And ended with a most convincing faint.
I landed in a graceful heap, Uhura feigned concern,
Our captor, for an instant, was distracted.
I grabbed his legs to trip him up, Uhura shoved behind,
His forehead with the solid wall impacted.

We fled before alarms were raised, then paused to catch our breath,
Retrieved the stunned Orion's key and gun,
Then heard a distant siren wail, saw lots of flashing lights.
The hunt for our recapture had begun.
We headed for the prison cells, retraced our recent steps,
The rescue of our friends our only thought.
We could not leave McCoy and Kirk to dig Orion mines,
Or Spock to run Orion life support.

We saw a large "No Entry" sign, and stumbled through the door
Uhura flipped a switch to safely lock it.
A package on the table read 'Top Secret Starfleet Plans',
I stuffed it in my belt (I had no pocket)
We found a ventilation grille, and quickly crawled inside,
Then tumbled down steep shafts and hairpin bends
The metal maze confused us; we were running out of time
To find the cells and liberate our friends.

Meanwhile, at the Star base docks, the search had been in vain,
We'd vanished with no trace or explanation.
The Scot's Command Decision was to leave his friends behind,
His duty was to save the Federation.
As hoped, they'd found an ion trail to lead them to their prey.
The Scot took Kirk's command with heavy heart.
With Chekov in the Vulcan's place and Sulu at the helm,
The Enterprise was ready to depart.

Back on board the prison hulk, we stopped to rest a while,
Our movements had, so far, escaped detection.
Despite our calculations, we had somehow lost our way.
We'd failed to find the prison cell direction.
We struggled on, our spirits low, and tried to overcome
The odds against our party reuniting.
Then, through the dismal silence, welcome voices reached our ears;
The distant sound of Vulcan/Doctor fighting.

We hurried on, our spirits rose, encouraged by the sounds
Of Spock's clear Vulcan voice, and Southern drawl.
We traced the noise down winding shafts and found its origin
A metal grid embedded in the wall.
Beyond the grille, two pirates stood, outside the prison cell.
We softly raised the grille, I raised the gun.
The last clear recollection of the two Orion guards
Was me, with stolen phaser set on stun...

We quickly freed our captive friends; they greeted us with joy,
Relieved our rescue bid had gone as planned.
We tied the stunned Orions up, the Vulcan stood on guard,
The Captain (as expected) took command.
"We have to seize the ship," he said, "we have to gain control.
We have to take these pirates by surprise.
We have to take the bridge by storm, and capture all the crew,
Before we call the Starship Enterprise."

The Doctor looked unhappy at the task his friend proposed,
"Surely we don't have to interfere?
The Enterprise will track us down, defeat these pirate thugs.
The wisest thing to do is stay right here."
The Vulcan turned to face McCoy, an eyebrow slightly raised,
"As usual there's a point you've overlooked.
Recall our last encounter with Orion Pirate ships;
When threatened with defeat, they self destruct."

The Doctor, irritated at the Vulcan's smug response,
Declared there was no need to risk a riot.
If we could find their sick bay he could simplify our task,
And synthesise a drug to keep them quiet.
James Kirk agreed the thoughts were sound, he organised our group,
We had to find the labs without delay.
We hurried through the open grille before more guards arrived.
Our plot to thwart the foe was under way.

Meanwhile, at the Star base docks, the Starship crew set out
On yet another peril-laden trip.
Their orders - to recover, if they could, the Vital Plans,
If they couldn`t, to destroy the Pirate Ship.
For hours on end the ship sailed on, through vast uncharted space,
To follow, at warp speed, the freighter's track,
Till Chekov checked his view screen twice then called to Mr Scott,
"I think the pirate wessel's coming back!"

The ship was put on Red Alert, the pirate hulk approached,
It gave no hint of danger or aggression.
This did not fool the canny Scot; he raised the shields at once.
His goal - a swift and bloodless repossession.
His message reached the pirate ship - its meaning loud and clear.
"Surrender or we'll blow your ship away!"
To Scott's complete amazement, a familiar voice replied,
"Just try it and I'll dock you six months' pay!"

Reunion on the Enterprise! The Captain's safe return!
A cause for ship-wide joy and celebration!
The reason why a pirate ship was manned by Starfleet's best
Involved a rather lengthy explanation.
We told of huge Orion guards, and dismal prison cells,
The anaesthetic gas McCoy discovered.
The endless ventilation shafts, our ultimate success,
With dangers overcome and plans recovered.

Later, at the Star base docks, the Enterprise returned,
She needed two more weeks to be repaired.
A ship wide call from Captain Kirk confirmed what we had feared,
A state of recreation was declared.
Our 'gang of five' declined the chance, preferred to stay on board.
We felt return to work was overdue.
We needed to recover in the peace of outer space
From all the trials which shore leave put us through.


Copyright Mrs P