Matt's Personal Log - Episode 26
First stop after we left Ferenginar was Citadel. I was hoping to check out the Mirror Expedition being put together by Princess Organa, and we also figured we could get Arnold to make some alterations to Karr’s and Thanos’s ships. We hit Arnold’s place first, where I got to meet his and Karr’s old – scratch that, former – shipmate, Salma. What a body! Yeah I was hittin’ on her, but come on, who wouldn’t? When I found out she was a Betazoid though (and when it became obvious Karr had feelings for her), I pulled back and started talking to her; she gave me some pointers that’ll help with Z, with regards to types of foods and entertainments that most Betazoids tend to appreciate more.
We did eventually get to a function dealing with the Mirror Expedition – a full-on black tie fund raiser, which cost some serious latinum. In the end I think it was worth it – I think maybe I’ve put that whole porn thing in the past with the Princess (we’re still not friends, but maybe she doesn’t want to Lorena Bobbitt my ass any more). We stayed around for an after-dinner auction (more fund raising) where I scored some cool paintings and a handful of custom holonovels. Plus I’m pretty sure Thanos was clocking the other big spenders at the auction so we’ll have some juicy targets to… well, shall we say help lighten their burden of an overabundance of wealth.
The next day we were ready to depart the Station, but where to go? My research had turned up answers to some of the questions we had learned at the Templar site, but that was all pointing to a trip to the Gamma Quadrant, through the Dominion and vast unknown territories. We’ll need to gather more info before I’ll be comfortable making that jump. Instead we decided to go Gren-Ga Tharg on the far side of the Klingon Empire. Karr’s uncle was there, and was another step on the odyssey that his mother had tasked him with. Man, it’s been over a year since we left the ‘Verse and I thought Karr was gonna handle this part, but evidently he never made it quite that far out. No matter – together we’d cover the distance faster and have each other’s back (which, as it turned out, was very much needed).
The trip there was too far to manage safely – those distances (over 100 ly) invariably have errors creep into the equations (stellar drift is a bitch!). To make things easier we chose Drozana Station as a waypoint since it was roughly halfway to our final destination. Now if you don’t know, Drozana is a really old space station, formerly Federation, but now run by a family of Ferengi merchants (con men). It sits pretty close to the Klingon Empire, and has become quite notorious for the ‘class’ of its clientele. Of course, we fit right in. I actually kinda liked it, even if there coulda been a little more eye candy present. There were a few arms dealers in station when we got there, so we all picked up a few new toys. My favorite purchase is my new hand cannon – it feels like a real gun, not some hand-vacuum like a lot of weapons these days are, and it packs a whollop like a kicking mule; gotta say I’m lookin’ forward to tryin’ it out.
I also did some gambling at the station. They had one of those new dabo tables with the holo-Leeta. Now, on the journey over I’d spent a little time at Thanos’s table (he can tell you how he wound up with his new Ferengi ship), and enjoyed it immensely. Holo-Leeta is probably one of the best made photonic personalities I’ve ever met (barring Cate of course, but she’s unique). Thing is, the Leeta on Drozana Station greeted me like an old friend, and I’m pretty sure she had knowledge of some of the things I’d said to the Leeta on Thanos’s ship. Got me wondering – with the Sebacean takeover on Ferenginar, was it possible that the Ferengi Syndicate was marketing holo-Leeta in order to spread an intelligence-gathering mechanism around the galaxy? Seems plausible to me, so I’m gonna be extra vigilant when it the presenc eof a holo-dabo table and see if I can trip one of them up. Only thing is, I think they (she?) may be on to my suspicions; I’m pretty sure the Leeta on Thanos’s ship is looking at me funny since we left Drozana.
(As an aside, my original idea of the dabo tables being joined in a complex web of subspace communications isn’t as viable as I originally thought – it’d be too easy to detect. I now suspect that the Leeta’s on various ships instead accept short-burst communications from the stationary ones and are able to pass on the information whenever they pass a Ferengi Syndicate listening station.)
After Drozana we popped over to the bog planet Karr’s uncle was on. When we entered the system we emerged into a full-on battle between the Empire and the Klingons! Karr and Thanos immediately leapt into action, which is probably why I’m still here to write this log. The two ships combined were too ungainly to maneuver effectively, so Thanos and Karr’s pilot got us separated even as we were taking evasive maneuvers – not that anyone was targeting us per se, just that there were so many torpedoes and energy weapons being fired that the idea of ‘space’ around Gren-ga Tharg has ceased to be a viable concept!
Well Karr’s ship immediately dove toward the planet, which was something I expected Thanos to do as well. He did – sort of. His response was to order us to crash into a nearby moon – yeah, you heard right – crash! He powered his ship toward that moon like the crazy man that he is but at the last moment he pulled up and almost all of the systems on his ship shut down. He’d hidden us behind some sort of holographic ‘duck blind’, but it meant we were running silent, like submarines back in WW2. We were stuck there several hours, just hoping that no one would notice us, or that we wouldn’t get hit by a stray shot (no shields, you see). Eventually we saw an opening and we popped about a sector away – far enough to have time to run if we had to and close enough to see if Karr would make it.
We actually didn’t have long to wait for Karr – he’d gotten to the planet and rescued a lone survivor from the surface, who eventually turned out to be his uncle. The uncle (I never actually learned his name) had suffered some serious burns, which Karr did manage to stabilize. He’d need an actual doctor soon, so we got underway back to Drozana where we’d figure out where to go next (probably DS9 or Citadel). The old man had nothing but disdain for Karr – in his eyes, Karr had lost his honor with a lot of his past actions. He wasn’t going to help Karr in his quest until that honor had been regained. There was lot of arguing and insults being shot back and forth between those two (I tried to help but I don’t really understand a Klingon’s sense of honor so wasn’t really much help at all).
Eventually it was decided that Karr would undergo some Klingon Ritual in order to regain his honor in the eyes of his uncle. There was some chanting and singing, even some fires and smoke and incense, but essentially the ritual was that Karr would walk through a gauntlet of crewmen, each of which would be armed with a Klingon pain-stick-thingie. We’d strike Karr with these (of course I volunteered to help Karr regain his honor, it was the right thing to do) as he passed. If Karr could make it through all this, he had to climb up to the seat where his uncle was sitting. There, the old man would draw his knife (one of those Klingon ones with all the serrations and extra cutting edges). Karr would grab the blade with his bare hand and his uncle would ‘unsheathe’ the knife again, obviously with the hopeful event of Karr’s fingers being removed. If Karr could undergo all of this without passing out or dying, his honor would be restored and the old man would help.
Well, Karr did it. He impressed me really – I wouldn’t want to go through anything like that, which is why I try to keep my honor intact at all times. I think Thanos and I really impressed the old man as well – we did our best to make sure that Karr’s honor was well and truly deserved at the end of the ritual by holding our pain sticks on him a littl elonger than everyone else had done. Anyway, Karr’s got tha tpiece of the puzzle now. We just got back to Drozana a little while ago, and will probably stick around for a day or so.
Next stop? Who knows? But as a wise man once said: ’Don’t know where we’re goin’ but there’s no sense in being late’.