13 Oct

Chance of a ghost

Chief Engineer's log, 19:54, 13 October 2213
Location: Intersystem between the JOP and Corvus FTL Corridor
Status: Sublight transit

 

That Cirilli cow is insisting that I do regular logs ‘to support the scientific research’. For fuck’s sake. I haven’t done repairs anywhere near her precious Star Step equipment for weeks, and Wong keeps me well away from any maintenance. What’s the point?

Oh, whatever. Maybe if I bitch about her enough, she’ll stop asking. A guy can hope, right?

Everything’s going fine. Starry’s on silent mode and champing at the restriction like a rabid dog playing nice for the vet. We’re still in the JOP’s region – Judiciary ships come and go around here all the time. We passed within comms distance of one a couple of days ago and exchanged ident checks. Everyone on board froze where they were and listened to the exchange. Tyler was our calm and collected voice, and not the only one who sighed when the Judiciary ship fucked off and left us alone.

The last thing we need is to get hauled up by one of them and have the lobster shells drop by for a visit. Starry’s charade and status could be blown and we’d all have to head back to the JOP for another grilling.

As if answering questions about that bitch Tripi wasn’t bad enough. They had me describe everything in detail three times. And then asked me questions about it. As if I was lying, or too fucking stupid to know what had happened. I was there; I know what she did to me. And to the ship’s systems, and to Starry. I didn’t tell them much about the last part – they’ve got plenty to hang the SecOff bitch with. No need to hang Starry while I’m at it.

Sometimes I wonder if I told them too much. Everything I put in a log and then some. It was more than I’d tell anyone else, but I guess that’s the point. I came out feeling dirty, as if everyone could see what I’d spilled in there. Never want to do that again. If anything like that turns up on our decks a second time, I’m gonna suggest that we space the bastard so we don’t have to repeat that shit.

Anyway. It’s good to be away from the JOP. I feel like things’re going back to normal, though ‘normal’ is a shifting medium on this ship. Starry’s always making her own rules. Which is fine – stops life being dull. Wouldn’t change it for the world.

It was a relief to know I wasn’t the only one on the ship who felt that way about being here. When the captain asked the crew if they wanted to stay, I thought at least one of the others would turn tail and run away. But hell, she’s risked everything for us, nearly split herself into pieces saving our asses. Sticking with her despite a minor legal issue that might never come to anything seems like the least we can do.

The Cirilli cow seems pleased that no-one turned away, as if we stayed because of her revolutionary research. Right. That’s exactly why we chose to stay. For a smart chick, she’s really fucking stupid sometimes. All of us chose this job for a reason, and it wasn’t because we were excited by the idea of making a new kind of spaceship engine. Except for Cirilli’s team, but they’re all freaks anyway. It’s not like we’ll ever see a portion of the profits that Is-Tech will make from this drive of theirs, or anything useful like that.

Everyone else on board is keeping to themselves right now. Or at least, keeping the hell away from me, which suits me just fine. I’ve got enough work to keep me busy through the nightcycles and it seems like everyone else is twiddling their thumbs. Waiting for stuff to happen.

Tonight’s job is putting a drone back together with the parts we picked up from the JOP – Waldo’s brother hasn’t been working since Starry got boxed. Almost done now – I should be able to start him up again in a few minutes.

Hmm. He needs a name.

 

ELLIOTT: Hey, Starry!

STARWALKER: Yes, Engineer Monaghan?

ELLIOTT: (winces) I wish you wouldn’t call me that.

SW: It is the proper address.

ELLIOTT: I am so going to rewire your voice processor if you don’t stop that.

SW: That would not be wise, Engineer Monaghan.

ELLIOTT: Dammit, Starry!

SW: Did you hit your thumb?

ELLIOTT: No!

SW: Oh, good. Did you call me for a reason?

ELLIOTT: Yes! Though I’ve forgotten what it was now. What was I doing?

SW: Complaining about everything. And smacking that drone panel like it offended you.

ELLIOTT: Oh, right, yeah. This drone needs a name.

SW: Is that Waldo’s brother? I wondered what happened to him.

ELLIOTT: He broke a track and then Waldo’s fusing torch broke, so I shut him down for parts.

SW: Poor guy. I thought things weren’t being done as quickly lately.

ELLIOTT: Yeah. You never see this one, but you know when he’s not working.

SW: Like a ghost.

ELLIOTT: (frowning) That’s just creepy.

SW: You should call him Casper!

ELLIOTT: He is not a ghost.

SW: He watches you when you sleep.

ELLIOTT: He does not!

SW: He wouldn’t be a very good ghost if you knew.

ELLIOTT: You’re evil.

SW: He leans over you sometimes.

ELLIOTT: Shut up!

SW: It’s true!

ELLIOTT: It is not!

SW: You have no way of knowing that.

ELLIOTT: I hate you.

SW: You do not.

ELLIOTT: (sticks his tongue out.)

SW: (laughs.)

 

Bitch. And to think she wants me to let her out of her box. Then she’d be able to torture the whole crew like that, instead of focussing it all on me. Oh, that’s the point! She’s trying to pressure me into letting her out! Well, it’s not going to work! So there.

Crap. I was doing well with that bad mood, and now it’s run away on me. Damn her and her teasing.

Come on, Casper, time to get up. Work to do.

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3 Responses to “Chance of a ghost”

  1. daymon34 Says:

    And now Elliot is going to wonder if Casper does watch him when he sleeps. Casper is the quite one that just gets the job done. Funny thing is Starry just might have Casper do that just once, just to prove her point.

    Great way to blow a bad mood, tease him till he can’t feel down anymore.

  2. Melanie Says:

    I love writing these two talking – they are the best fun. Makes me grin, every time.

  3. Benjamin B. Says:

    They make me grin too! You were right about this one. Good and fun. I think this is the first time I remember Starry laughing. It was slightly surprising, but definitely a good surprise. Also very good to hear from Elliott again. I knew I’d been missing hearing from him, but I didn’t realize quite how much.