Missions and Suspisions Part 2
Last time on Star Cats:
“And next is um, Ensign Lucky!” I stumble over my words, watching Ensign Lucky bounce up and down, ready to come up on stage for her promotion. I, Captain Shtankadoodle, had contacted Admiral Meowers to host a celebration, promoting Ensign Lucky to lieutenant, and Ensign Spot to doctor. Almost everybody on my crew was excited.
I point toward one of the four new faces. This one belonging to a fluffy, grey cat with soft eyes and a pressed in face. “This is Doctor Fuzzums, he is a Persian cat. Along with the other three doctors, he has been trained beyond just normal practices, and is now familiar with the diseases, sicknesses, natural medicines, and the history of Aswan-.”
“Who named Aswan?” A crew member blurts out, interrupting me. Doctor Fuzzums immediately responds.
“Admiral Rich, a sphinx, whose mother was born in Egypt. Thus, Aswan in named for Rich’s mother, after a town in Egypt.” I glared at the random crew member for his rudeness. He shrank back out of sight.
“And this is Doctor Archie,” I continue, pointing toward an orange and white tabby cat. I then introduce Doctor Cocoa, a well groomed, longhaired, cat. She appeared to be the youngest of them all.
“And finally Doctor Inkwell.” My crew members had already directed their stares to the last doctor, a kind-looking, black cat, and were looking him over.
Ensign Ricky let out a happy whistle, admiring his work. He had neatly padded with bubble wrap, one entire box, and another box he had padded twice! A clear container disguised by bubble wrap caught his attention. Ensign Ricky took a step closer, which he would have never done on Subcommander Ocee's watch, almost unable to believe that he had overlooked it.
“This is my ticket to winning Lieutenant Lucky’s attention once and for all!” He said aloud, tearing up his bubble wrap and reaching in for the container.
I sit with a worried expression, fidgeting and twitching as Admiral Meower’s radio transmission came in. "Again, Gobheinleizgoble has declared war on Aswan. We have to warn you that spies may be on your ship, as we have located two of them on separate ships heading toward Aswan already. We believe that if there is a spy on your ship, he or she will have a poison on him or her to poison the Aswan tuna supply, and cripple the planet sending it into a state of poverty. We do not know if there is a spy on board you’re ship, however we do ask that you stay alert.”
And now the continuation...
“Yes, but I don’t-,” Before the ensign could say anymore about the fact that the air vents on the shuttle already had been fixed, Lieutenant Lucky abruptly pointed to her new badge, a Lieutenant's badge. The ensign drooped his shoulders and walked out of the office that had just been a storage room until Ensign Lucky had been promoted.
“She’s always like that now…” The ensign said, crawling under the shuttle pod with Ensign Ricky. Ensign Ricky nodded.
“I know…she used to be so happy and optimistic, and treated us like we were all friends—except me.”
“Speaking of her being weird,” The ensign changed the topic slightly,"you aren't very sulky, and that's how it's been the entire time we've been on our mission. What's going on?” Ensign Ricky grinned broadly. Lt. Lucky stepped outside of her office tapping at a tablet, and Ensign Ricky began to talk in a more hushed voice.
“You know when the Captain told me to inspect the cargo five days ago, because Subcommander Ocee isn’t here to do it?” Ensign Ricky felt a little bit of his stress disappear. Frequently he had been worrying about the “spy” everybody had been talking about coming into his room at night and kidnapping him.
“We-ell.” Ensign Ricky began. The ensign shuffled a nervous expression around on his face. “We-ell” coming from anybody didn’t typically mean that they had stuck to the rules, “I saw something. And I picked it up. And I took it back to my room.”
“You mean you stole?!” The other ensign blurted out a little to loudly. After a brief silence of checking if Lieutenant Lucky had heard them, their heart beat began to come back. Ensign Ricky moved a little uncomfortably, and began to twist his wrench harder. “You need to put it back! I don’t know what it is but you need to put it back it’s not worth it, Ricky!”
“It’s fur-gel.” Ensign Ricky sighed, “I haven’t ever even heard of fur-gel before, but apparently they have it. And I was just going to use a little to impress Ensi-, I mean, Lieutenant Lucky.”
"It sounds to me like your trying to talk yourself into doing the wrong thing, Ricky,” The ensign said calmly.
“Well, wouldn’t the people who ordered it be more happy to have helped love blossom than to use it in a fashion magazine or something?” The ensign turned his head to Ensign Ricky. It was dark beneath the shuttle-pod, however they could both see the doubt they wore on their faces clearly.
“You need to put it back Ensign Ricky.” The other ensign said simply. Ensign Ricky sighed. The other ensign was right. He did need to put it back, but what did “need” really entail? What if “need” could be just a little delayed?
“I KNOW who the spy is…” Ensign Ricketta hung over the table I was eating at. Scald marks from her salad morphing into a hot skillet of mashed potatoes were on her face, and lumps of potatoes and butter had found their way into her fur, and all over her uniform. A repair team said that the regenerator had just had a slight consistency malfunction, and that “it almost never pulls stunts to that extent”.
“Who is the spy?” I ask dryly. This was the seventh person who had claimed they knew who the “spy” was today. One of which had darted his eyes back and forth to check if anybody had been eavesdropping, and then whisper into my kitty ear that it was “the captain”.
“Lieutenant Lucky.” Ensign Ricketta said, butter dripping from the tip of her ear.
“And why?” I asked, sighing. I was starting to doubt that there even was a spy, and was beginning to think that this was just a misunderstanding from the Admiral.
“She’s acting really weird. She’s like, being mean or something.” Ensign Ricketta looked around, jumped off the table and walked away, just to bump into the wall. That verified my concerns.
“Doctor Spot, a cat has heat stroke in the cafeteria!” I say, tapping my badge, which also functioned as a walky-talky. I didn’t say it very formerly, but Doctor Spot knew what I was talking about, and that was all that mattered.
“Again? Ensign Ricketta?” Doctor Spot’s voice came through.
“Okay, I’ll be up their shortly.”
Doctor Archie, easily noticeble from orange and white fur, Doctor Fuzzums, and Doctor Cocoa, were standing in the hall making playful jokes about a disease on Aswan when Lieutenant Lucky quickly pushed through the group of cats. I had just called her to my office, which was farther down the hall. Doctor Inkwell had not been in the crowd because he was helping Doctor Spot in the medical bay. Lieutenant Lucky spotted the door to my office farther ahead and jogged to it. She paused to gather herself, and quickly licked her paw to mash down a tuft of fur sticking up on her head. Lieutenant Lucky took a deep breath, and then again. She had only ever been called to my office when she was in trouble, or it was a group meeting. Maybe that was changing now that she had been promoted. Maybe. She pushed her way through the plastic kitty flap into my office, causing it to swing back and forth vibrantly. Of course their was another door she could have used, but most all the crew found it more convenient to use the plastic flap doors.
Instead of noticing my Lieutenant I had called into my office, my eyes followed the little fishies swimming back and forth on the screen. Technically, I was supposed to be reviewing some 43 e-mails about “who the spy was”, or noticing that my Lieutenant had walked into the office, but this link Subcommander Ocee had found while on her training mission, and then sent me, was very fascinating.
“Ahem……..Mew………MEOW.” I practically jumped out of my chair and flew into the safety of my litter box, which had a roof on it. My tablet fell to the ground.
“Um. Captain Shtankadoodle?” Lieutenant Lucky said in a confused voice. I cautiously crawled out, recognizing my Lieutenant’s voice, and leapt back up into my leather comfy chair.
“Why did you ask me into your office?” Lieutenant Lucky stood with good posture in front of me. I could already tell that she was acting different. She usually was much more relaxed, and almost always had cracked the cat version of a smile by now.
“I heard that you were acting “really weird”. I wanted to see more myself. Now I definitely know what Ensign Ricketta was talking about.” I sigh. Usually Lieutenant Lucky made everybody cheer up. Now she was acting just as bad as Subcommander Ocee. Lieutenant Lucky’s eyes went big, and her kitty equivalent of shoulders collapsed in on themselves.
“What do you mean?” She asked in a horrified tone of voice. For a second I saw through to Lucky that the entire crew was familiar with, and then she straightened back up again.
“I mean what you just did. You used to be much more optimistic and relaxed.” Lieuenant Lucky did not flinch. “You know…happy.” She still didn’t budge, and I felt that I needed to say something that would really get through how bad this was for her. Then I got it.“And now you are like Subcommander Ocee.” Her eyes got big again.
“Ca-captain!” She gasped. I grinned to myself. I had just nailed it. Seriously. Like a 25 pound mallet on a splinter. Crushed. We continued to talk for a little while, but I had done all I could do. Now Ensign Lucky needed to talk to her friend or something, because I wasn’t much help, and I had a bad urge to get back to the fish link that Subcommaner Ocee had sent me.
Doctor Inkwell and Doctor Spot worked side by side, intrigued by the new all-natural medicine they were learning to make. Doctor Spot broke the silence.
“You know, a whole lot of cats think that you are the culprit. The bad guy.” Doctor Spot said. Doctor Inkwell didn’t say anything for a little while.
“I can tell. Wherever I go, cats are pointing. I feel like a criminal, even though I did nothing wrong. I can’t help but think it’s Doctor Cocoa, because she would make the perfect spy and wouldn’t be searched as thoroughly.” Doctor Inkwell was silent a little longer. “At the same time, if everybody is accusing each other of being the spy, the REAL spy might just slip past us…and cripple Aswan.” Doctor Inkwell had strong feelings for Aswan. Ever since it had been discovered, he had wanted to go there--even before the first non-alien cats had stepped paw on the planet. For four entire years he had studied Aswan’s diseases, history, plants, and geography. He could still be the culprit, and be fooling me though… The thought slipped into Doctor Spot’s mind. Doctor Spot pushed it out. Of course he didn’t mean it. Doctor Inkwell was his new friend.
“I…I don’t think you’re the bad guy.” Doctor Spot said slowly. He felt better after he said it, and continued his work.
Ensign Ricky bounded into his room, he only had a fifteen minute break, and it had taken five minutes to just get to his room. He leapt over his cat tree, and made a beeline for the fur-gel bottle. Nobody is going to notice just a little missing fur-gel, he thought cheerfully, ripping off the seal, which he would glue back on later, and pumping it into his paw. It felt good as it seeped into and between his fur. He slicked it against his body. Then he got a towel and wiped off the excess gel. He was ready. He quickly admired himself in the mirror, and then left for work again. “That’s what I call fast action!” Ensign Ricky said to himself running down the corridor.
The room was silent and dark, like the room that every bad guy has. The loud hum coming from the engine of the ship was one of the most overwhelming noises in the room. The overall ambience was cold and mysterious. A blue light lit up the soft eyes of a feline as he violently typed away at the computer. On the computer it read: Successfully infiltrated the starship, Catnip. While I am a suspect, there are at least six other suspects here too. I’ve lasted five days already. The captain, Shtanky, or something, is already getting tired out. The poison in still safe with me. Contact me again soon. The unknown cat scrambled the message and then sent it, closing the laptop and silently putting it away.
To be continued in: Missions and Suspisions Part 3
A hospital bed. Wha…? Why? Again? Nugget’s bleary yellow eyes struggled to adjust to the brightness of the cold, concrete room he was being kept in. A long row of hospital beds lined the endless, grimy wall, but his eyes were too unfocused to see them. Instead, it was the smell of weak alcohol cleaner that told him exactly where he was. Nugget tried to push himself up onto his legs, but a sharp, stabbing feeling rent his stomach.
Button’s paws pressed against the iron door, supporting her as she stood up on her two hind legs and tried to peer down the long, narrow row of identical white cells. The only thing different about each individual cell were the foul creatures that inhabited them, and really, Button thought, even they didn’t seem to vary much in size or demeanor.
Yet another addition to, "The Sun Always Shines On Lactolia."
Another addition to, "The Sun Always Shines In Lactolia."
Like usual, its so long that its painful! (But you know you can't resist reading it, anyway.)
Another addition to, "The Sun Always Shines In Lactolia."
An addition to, "The Sun Always Shines In Lactolia."
A spin off the of the much-loved "Star Cats" series.
The behind-wiggling sequel to 'The Big Dent' Part 1.
As if the threat of a comet bound for the Solera Station didn’t seem looming enough, with the entire ship induced into a nervous, whispered panic, Subcommander Ocee could only keep from biting her claws and resisting the impulse to shrink away into a tight cranny—a box, a nook in the insulation, a raccoon trap—anything would do, really, to get away from this news: Lieutenant Lucky had just confirmed that the comet everybody was worried about was only seventeen minutes from impact.