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About Pher

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  • Location
    Bull's Head Nebula, New Risa, Evenstar Bay
  • Interests
    Kite surfing, jet rig diving, stick fencing, sex
  1. Then there is the CNN article, "Finally, Captain Kirk has his cloaking device". Bath Ironworks recently launched a new stealth destroyer, the USS Zumwalt, first of the DDG-1000 class stealth ships. It is reported to have the radar cross section of a fishing boat. Scheduled to be its first commander? Captain James A Kirk. :)
  2. Then there is CNN's article, "Shields up! Scientists work to produce 'Star Trek' deflector device." We're all aware, I suspect, that radiation problems make just a trip to Mars unhealthy, let alone staying there on a planet with no magnetic field to deflect radiation. They're working it. A magnetic field is one of the concepts under consideration. An alternative is to bulk up on material objects between space and the biological cargo, stuff like food... fuel... human waste. Another plausible approach, but less romantic. I don't know about saying "Activating deflector shields, captain!" just before flushing.
  3. Joe was wrong, for the moment at least. Just now, Pher wanted nothing to do with taking over this crew. They were great at improvising, but what the improvised into was generally frontal assault with explosion. There was time for that. It had saved their bacon often enough. But Joe kept leading them into convoluted political messes. They just didn't have the discipline or patience to unravel the complex situations and come up with a plan to solve it. They were the wrong people for an ugly job. Almost. Pher thought she might have enough pieces of the puzzle to start playing the game if she could just stop the stampede long enough to remind people they had objectives and a need for stealth. "Audrey, dust safeties to 70 percent," she said softly. She looked at the lift driver. Not ugly. Not Adonis, either. Heck. She let her fear drive her glands rather than lust. Not too strong a dosage, but more than a hint. Not enough to addict. She looked into his eyes and smiled. "You want adventure? Romance? Latinum? Gular with a black eye? Convince your dispatcher all is well with the world." She decided not to bother with the stick that came with the carrot. He'd already encountered the sticks.
  4. Next, it turns out we may not need warp drive to reach Vulcan. They discovered a few maybe not moons orbiting the not planet Pluto. A vote was called to name the moons. Shatner and Nimoy called on fans to vote one of them Vulcan. Vulcan won the vote. We'll see if it sticks. It's an awful cold place to call Vulcan. CNN called their article, "Live long and prosper: Vulcan wins vote to name Pluto moon."
  5. Next, we have the beginnings of a tractor beam? Sky News has an article, Star Trek 'Tractor Beam' Created By Scientists.
  6. Then, in the learning to walk before you can run department, we have [an article on technologist.com called "Channeling Star Trek: Researchers to Begin Fusion Impulse Engine Experiments"] The engineers working on the project are indeed calling it impulse drive. I think they are wrong, however, in trying to confuse deuterium with dilithium. <_<
  7. Guys? Everybody? Listen up? I'm going to run at the mouth a bit here. First, attaboys all around. We're not an elite command team, and aren't likely to ever be one, but we got through this one pretty well. Thing is, it's just one job. At least six more on the queue. I've got some things I'd like to see planned or done. A good number of them require tech skill I haven't got. I'd like each of you to consider taking the lead on more jobs. Troy? Start of the fight you were feeding a cat. I stopped you, pulled you into the firefight. Would you believe I've had second thoughts? I'd been assuming that the Mad Doc was the boss guy of the robot bunch. I'm not so sure about that now. Is it worth chasing down the cat? Is there any way to figure out if there is anyone above the Mad Doc that the machines were reporting to? The Mad Doc was wearing Joe's ODRI. How much did he use it? Did he leave anything behind we could learn from? Anyone care to dig into the ODRI? One job on Gilmo's list is moving stuff from a Gular warehouse to one of Gilmo's. Work has started on that. How much more polishing do we need? Mind you, I know very few plans last longer than first contact with the other side, but I'd like enough of a plan to hope it might possibly work, with enough knowledge on the side to ad-lib? I've two alternate realities I might want to sell. Which should we push? Anyone have a third? The first says the reason we came to this rock was an invite from Gilmo. Gilmo thought Joe too old and drunk and Sal too much an idealistic former Fed dreamer to work under his organization. He thus sent them to get a fatal physical at the Mad Doc's. We were warned of this. If pressed real hard we might mention Argyle as the one who gave us the warning. Our first attack on the Mad Doc was purely to rescue two friends. Gilmo's fault. The second attack was to rescue Zaph. The Mad Doc's fault. The second option starts with three tasks Gilmo gave us… the warehouse job, killing a station security guy, and rehiring two Gilmo guys who've gone over to Gular. Given three real Gilmo jobs, we might forge two other Gilmo jobs, the attacks on the Mad Doc. Neither of the above sell jobs is entirely satisfactory. They both involve us as well as Gilmo. If somebody has a better cleaner idea to promote, speak up. I'll accept criticism of my two proposals in far better grace if accompanied with a scheme that will work better. I would like to talk to the Guardians. I'd like to run that solo. I'm inclined to tell em a good deal about the goo, but not that we have a sample, no mention of Ethan, no mention of possible lab work. I might want a brief talk to Argyle. If I'm going to mention his name on anything, I'll want to clear it first. He also knows a lot of locals. He might give me a warning if I haven't read people's motivations right. I might want to talk to the guy we're supposed to kill. He's after Gilmo. If we offer him Gilmo's head on a plate, I might want to ask him to vanish briefly, to pretend we took him out, to give us a few days of credibility. We're eventually going to have to talk to the two guys Glimo wants to retire from Gular. I'm idly wondering if they might want Gilmo's head on a plate too, or to take over Gilmo's op after Gilmo is gone. Ethan has been feeding us stuff on the long term job. It's too soon to start planning that one, but we can't forget that's our long term goal, either. Think about it. Comments? Conjectures about my ancestry? Propositions? Offers to work on some of the above projects?
  8. Well, It's kind of unfortunate that you've been away long enough to no longer recognize Joe Manning's voice.... :rolleyes:
  9. Pher considered things deeply, then looked about at the others. “Culture here seems to emphasize initiation, paying one’s dues. I doubt anyone’s going to do much anything for us until we’ve done something for them. Judging how spectacularly we botched the ‘look around and stay out of trouble’ scout run, we aren’t going to get our primary mission done without a native guide, and Argyle is likely it. So, the two obvious options are to play to Argyle’s script or cut and run. Given our money situation, we’ve got to take a long hard look at Argyle’s script. “He obviously intends us to work in with Gilmo. He’s likely right. If we’re going to clobber Gilmo, we want to get close to him first. I figure we ought to do at least two of Gilmo’s three projects before turning on him. Doing all there might even get us paid. “Now, some of you ought to be better at hijacking warehouse contents or taking people out than I am. I’d like everyone to pick a project or two they think they’d be good at, get the information available from Troy, and work out a plan. “I’ll contribute one idea to start things going. I just got a call from Joe. Now, Joe is here, so it wasn’t Joe. I figure it was Joe’s ODRI. That says someone is digging through the rubble at the Mad Doc’s, and found Joe’s ODRI. “One of our jobs for Argyle is to blame the Mad Doc disaster on Bossman. Now, ODRIs run in open share mode and secure mode. If Joe’s ODRI isn’t on Joe’s wrist, it’s going to be hard for them to break into secured files. On the other hand, using Audrey and, assuming we can wake up Joe, using certain passwords, we might be able to securely access Joe’s ODRI and load it up with incriminating files. This might incriminate Gilmo, but us as well. “There’s also the problem of timing. If we’re working with Gilmo when he hears about the incriminating files, things are apt to get confusing. Thus, we’ll want to be in position to take out Gilmo before or just as security gets a hold of any incriminating files. “Not a perfect plan. Tricky. Anyone come up with a better? I’d be pleased if you can. Troy, do you think you’re up to the ODRI work? “Byblos? Seems to me that moving stuff from one warehouse to another isn’t all that dissimilar to what you used to do on Tranquility? Would you consider planning that one out? “Anyone else like to claim a job?”
  10. Byblos stepped forward, in a comfortable discussion position between Pher and Argyle. "Argyle, I personally owe you for preventing my unwarranted arrest by this station's pig security. I may of been able to compensate you for that in someway." Byblos looked down then to Pher and then back to Argyle. "Your help on extracting our crew from that meatshop,... however I personally don't see why you did it. We F*cked up. If I were in your boots I would of just shook my head and walked away from that bench when you and I were talking." "Yeah, I'll say it." Byblos turned to Pher "sorry to say this Lifeguard, but this crew currently does not have the ability to pull of the job offered us." The Nausicaan returned his view to Argyle. "I owe you that bit of honesty Argyle. Frankly I do not understand what your interest in this crew is. It seems to me ...a bad investment." Byblos finished with a glance to Pher with a shake of the head as he took a seat nearby to listen if the discussion developed further.
  11. Pher observed everyone settling into the safe area, made sure the docs had what the docs needed, then turned to Argyle, also calling over any who might wish to hear. “Sorry, Argyle. This did not go well. The cover up is much appreciated. By my reckoning, we owe you big, and I wouldn’t blame you if what you asked was to leave your turf without causing further ruckus. We’ll see. “On what happened… This bunch is not short on skills or courage. Thing is, we’re a mixed group. All of us come from different turfs, play different games under different rules. One major similarity is that none of us come from this turf. Four pairs went out with intent to get the lay of the land without getting into trouble. Three of em ended up in some type of trouble. “You gave us a fair briefing on the situation, and left us in a public lobby. Shane took off heading right in the front door. I figured in some respects he was right. We didn’t have time for a committee meeting. We can plan a job, even with our differing backgrounds making the process slow, time we didn’t have with Joe maybe being cut up. “When I started in, I had no idea what I was going to do. By the time I was through the door, I had a line. I assumed we had more firepower than they’d really want to deal with, which turned out to be correct. I’d sell them if they didn’t murder our people all would be cool, but if they insisted on murdering our people, the result would be very uncool. I tried to threaten more with exposure than force, but didn’t let them ignore force. Simple choice, all cool or utter destruction. Doctor Z ended up choosing utter destruction. “He wanted the name of someone with connections. You told us not to give your name. Shane dropped the name ‘Bossman,’ which resulted in a call where Bossman didn’t back us up. This seemed to lock the Doc into the need for a name that would back us up. “You were talking to Byblos? I asked “Tourguide” for permission to break the confidentiality clause. What I was asking for was permission to use your name, but I didn’t feel I could say that clearly when we were being heard. Was I too cryptic? I could likely have avoided explosions if I could have dropped your name, but you had said not to. Didn’t know the situation well enough to go against your one limiting command. Didn’t think the Doc would be as paranoid as he turned out to be. I kept the pressure on. The Doc set the fuses and ran. Boom. “With 20 20 hindsight, there are a bunch of things I’d like to have done different. During the early talking phase we had three scams going rather than one. As things started to get ugly the Doc was still willing to talk, but one of us stunned him. We all ran around looking for Joe and Sal, leaving the Doc unattended. Should have left a watch on him, or stunned him again heavy enough that he couldn’t get up and resume making trouble before we were gone. We also had the door to the control room open. With two clinic people unaccounted for, we should have left a guard on the room. Somebody with an ODRI should have been doing nothing but tracking the location of clinic personnel. We didn’t go in prepared. Simple stuff like having extra power cells, light and some rope would have been nice. Woulda, coulda, shoulda. We’re not well polished team. We’re still learning simple stuff. “My people are at their best and worst in chaos and making chaos. Once things were gone to pot, when I ran out of ideas, I let em run wild with their own ideas. It worked well enough that we got out, but I’ve got to learn to delegate better, and everyone has to learn to cover the field rather than each reaching for the biggest possible boom.” Pher shrugged. “Anyway, I don’t know whether you have a job for us, are trying to buy in on our own scheme, or if you have come to your senses after seeing us in action. I’d advise you not drop us off the deep end no warning again, though I appreciate that you let us pull Joe and Sal out. You know as well as I our need for a local guide. “Anything else?”
  12. Shane had taken off straight to the front door without waiting on a plan. Byblos was missing. Troy was bouncing around making glib comments in a way that Pher at least couldn’t predict. They had a scam going. Three of them, actually. Mutually incompatible. After Arygle had requested his name not be dropped, one of his underling’s names had been dropped anyway. Business as usual? Yet, somehow, things felt a lot better than prior fiascos. Was she getting used to this? Perhaps it was that no shots had been fired yet. She hoped none would. She fully expected a visit from station security shortly after the first energy weapons discharge. It might yet work. She had more of her people than their people at the point of contention. The Redhead should be able to see a bigger disaster upcoming if she didn’t cave than the hope of profit could justify. Pher had counted on the New Risa culture being reflected here. You don’t want the bosses to hear bad news. If little people bumped head to head, it was a lot better to back off and pretend nothing had happened than to push. Of course, it was easier to quietly make issues go away when on is playing Beach Queen, and this was a jungle rather than a beach. Little Red also seemed to be a boss’s girl, needing permission for everything. They would have to play it out. Pher just had to quietly innerly resolve that if The Redhead made a bad choice, she’d regret it. That way she didn’t much have to do any play acting.
  13. Pher walked aside Argyle, thinking. A bad habit, perhaps, but maybe someone ought to give it a try? As far as she could read from Troy, he seemed to accept that he had gotten into trouble legitimately. She’d have to ask, eventually, but it didn’t seem the time with Argyle listening. Oh, she didn’t doubt that Troy could get into trouble, or Shane, or Byblos, or anyone else on the crew up to and including Joe. That was the crew’s specialty, getting into trouble. But if this Argyle was so good at getting them out of trouble, had he helped get them into trouble in the first place? Part of this charade was an attempt to create a debt and some trust. The whole thing was proceeding nicely to that end. Pher just wasn’t sure how much of the charade was a charade. She also wasn’t sure how much it mattered. If he was good enough to set up the double level charade, he was perhaps worthy of working with anyway. He might not be worthy of trust, and perhaps the apparent debt wasn’t real, but whatever was coming down this Argyle had obviously played games and survived at Gular’s level. He knew what he was doing, and was playing on his home turf. Which the Qob crew didn’t, and rather obviously didn’t. So far, he seemed to be taking the Qob crew seriously. Pher wasn’t quite sure if he was more obtuse than he seemed, or whether her own perceptions of the crew were overly pessimistic. Likely some of both. Point one. If he was with Gular first and primary, the mission was over. His eyes were that good, and his attention was on them. Point two. They needed inside contacts. Samus had a few people on the inside, but nothing at all like the full organization Argyle was showing them. Point three, they weren’t going to be able to work with another inside group. Argyle was going to be looking for a cut. If he didn’t get it, if the only way to get a piece of the action was to play informant to Gular, he was apt to play informant with Gular. Besides, even given there were other groups like Argyle’s, each one they contacted would increase the risk. Point four, if he was as smart as he was going out of his way to show he was, he already likely knew precisely what was going down, and he wanted in. The Qob group wasn’t likely to be the only one fishing around for what they were after, just the group that Argyle was able to catch at it going in. This all led to the conclusion that Pher was going to have to deal him in. The question was how far in. Pher was accustomed to playing for high stakes, risking the lives and freedom of her friends to win the lives and freedom of her friends. She was almost inclined to introduce Argyle to Samus, accept a small agent’s commission, and deal the Qob out entirely. Argyle apparently had a better organization and was better placed to get the job done. Thing is, Joe tended to play for lower stakes, for latinum. He’d want to keep the lion’s share of the cut, which meant his people had to do the lion’s share of the work, take the lion’s share of the risks. Males. So, how to play it? How to get Argyle involved, but not too involved? How does one use him to cut the risk without too much cutting into the profit? And how to delay that call a bit? Argyle had to have a reputation, and Samus would know something of it. She was going to have to play the game blind, but would prefer not all the way blind. She’d also like to touch bases with Joe on the percentages. And just how deep in had Shane and Byblos got themselves?
  14. They were gathered in one of the hotel rooms, if the dive counted as meeting the high standard of the descriptor ‘hotel’. Pher started things rolling. “The way I figure it, we’re supposed to be looking for jobs, so we’d best look like we’re looking for jobs. Not sure we want to get em. That would pin us down. Still, if they keep an eye on newcomers, and they will, we’d best be looking for a while. You might also watch for jobs that grant access to interesting places. Anyway, we might find bars, visit job consoles, ask questions about pay scale, working conditions and such like. “Troy? You might want to do the initial technical scouting. How many sensors and where? Where is the control room? Airlocks? Escape pods? You might want to take William with you to check six and provide second opinions. As we agreed earlier, low risk to start, but if you see something too good to pass by and William agrees, maybe some risk. “Joe? Byblos? Shane? Me too, I guess. For various reasons, we might stick out or be recognized. Byblos and Shane might draw extra attention just being what they are. That’s fine. Early on at least, be what you look like you ought to be, big, not overly willing to back down. Gular attracts not a few of that type. You might draw less attention showing a bit of attitude than if you wander around as meek as mice. Not too much attitude, though. No hull breeches if you could? Drawing a little attention away from the rest of us might be OK, but too much trouble means too much attention. "I figure to work the bars some, but not in all out flamboyant mode. Working girl in a working bar, that's it. Joe? I figure you ought to stay low key too? Chris? I've nothing specific in mind. General rumor gathering I guess? “Any other ideas, suggestions, or intentions?” Chris Looks at Pher. "Well I said medical when I came aboard. It would make sense that I be looking in a hospital or medical facility. You would be amazed at the info you can gather from medical folders. Who knows might find something or even someone interesting." "Sounds good," Pher said after brief consideration. Thinking of nothing to add she looked about the rest of the group. "I can do low key easy enough," Joe said with a smirk at Pher. "Assuming I don't get into any fights. My version of low key also happens to involve bars, only I won't be shakin' my hips quite as much as you will. Only question is whether or not you want me in the same bar you'll be workin'. Might be safest if you got someone watchin' over you. "Might be safest if I got someone watchin' me for that matter. I will try to limit my intake, though, I promise." Joe glanced around at the rest of the group. "I do have a few observations to offer as I did sit through that whole show in the waiting area. Pher's cover story -- that we were all working together for a port-based outfit on Tranquility -- fell apart within one or two sets of questions. It put our charming processor on his guard a bit. There were more red flags raised later, though I suppose they could be chalked up to folks who were just irritated havin' to wait then be interrogated. But by the time I stepped up to the plate, he was clearly convinced that we were all hiding something. That means we're probably already targets of a light level of surveillance, and someone's story will have to change some if we don't want to bumped up to the next level." Joe shifted his focus back to Pher. "I'm afraid it's gonna have to be yours, gal. You provided a story for all of us and not everyone played along. So if anyone asks, it'll have to turn out that you misspoke. Most of us worked together on Tranquility, but a few of us met up with the rest not long before we left for Andus. "I have a cover story to suggest, one that would bring all our accounts together -- maybe a few minor holes notwithstanding -- and even give us a convenient path to the corporate center when the time comes. I suggest that we worked for Systems Enterprises. Remember them? Folks what got their skyscraper blown up by Minos when we were on Tranquility? Building where Jerald LaHaye worked? The same LaHaye who compiled a cache of data on the Rainmakers that I now possess? "There are a few advantages to this story. One, the company's Tranquility base getting blown up gives us a good reason for why we lost our jobs or couldn't get one that we were lined up for. The violence in general is a good reason we decided to leave the city; I believe I recall one of you giving it, in fact. Systems Enterprises is probably in a bit of disarray at the moment, so if anyone decides to give them a call to check employee records, it might be easy to see how our names would be lost. It may be understandable that we'd not want to broadcast our association with a company that was targeted by terrorists, hence our evasion of the questioning. And if and when the time comes that we decide to introduce some of the data on LaHaye's cache, our work for SE is the perfect cover. "Systems Enterprises builds and codes computers. But it's a safe bet that they install and repair computers on starships. The group of us that followed Pher's story could have comprised the spaceport branch of SE's operations. The group of us that chose separate career paths will have to fill in the gaps. "Ultimately it's your call, Pher. Don't worry -- our interrogator didn't bother askin' me for more than my name, so my story ain't been written yet." Byblos spoke up. "Since I followed Pher's story, the SE Spaceport angle might work for me. I told the guy I was a new hire of Pher's. That would fit in with those who got wasted in the bomb blast. I also declared my profession as an exterminator. Voles are everywhere in the galaxy, and they love chewing on data cable systems at ports and ships." From what I have seen this place fits the description of a port. I think that will work." Pher responded, "Well, if Joe wants to keep an eye on me, this leaves Chris, Shane and Byblos unpaired? You're all three looking for different job angles, but you might start poking around together, or start with a night at the bars together. Chris might look to belong better with Joe and me. I've no strong commitment to any particular pairing, but not being on one's own seems prudent." She turned to Byblos. "I like the vole hunting job. That could give you a low key way to poke about a lot of places. Are you actually good at it?" "Am I good at it? No. Have I done it yes. Nausicaa was infested with them, basically shot them on sight if I saw one. My father's ship as designated mop boy, I learned some baiting methods. They go for the bait, they get fried by a piece of stolen Federation tech. Tranquility was a jykin' pain. We tended to leave cycle parts around the yard for those who might want what others don't. Well the Voles went for them too. Again, a disruptor did them in. But they kept coming. Little Pet`aQs are tenacious. It was once said we should hire the Klingons to obliterate Cardassia Prime and eradicate the species..Hah! Beneath them apparently. "The lower spectra of society usually on Tranquility did the Vole hunting. A Nausicaan doing it would fit. I'd need to pick up a few things to make me fit the role, as for a partner? Well depends if one wants to get one's hands dirty," he added with a chuckle and a glance at Pher Will piped in. “How can he not be good at it? These are voles we’re talking about. I one-eyed, one-armed person could do it. The trick is setting up in the right area.” "OK," Pher replied with a small laugh of her own. "Then all we have to do is come up with a endgame that depends on our passing as expert vole hunters." The big cyborg looked at the surrounding area with a furrowed brow as the others spoke, his low voice still griping and mumbling to himself over the whole processing incident. "He turned back to the group, his bionic giving off a whine as he glared about. Shane had a pretty good idea who Joe was referring to on the whole red flags thing and he was still fuming from it. But he decided to keep his mouth shut on the whole ordeal, not wanting lose his temper to the point of snapping someone's head off.. "Aye, the cap'ns got the idea. I'll say I was workin' security SE spaceport branch, so with their buildin' gettin' blown to the next nebula, I wouldn't want to broadcast my previous position. I can baby-sit any of that think ya need it, seein' how I'm not much good for infiltratin' anywhere at this point." Pher nodded. “I’d like to see everyone working with someone. If anyone isn’t sure where they fit, I’ll give an opinion, but I suspect you can handle it. Anything else?”
  15. The space shuttle Enterprise is taking her last flight, to New York City where she will take up residence at the Intrepid museum. CNet has a brief blurb on it, Shuttle Enterprise makes its last flight On the other side of the world, the nuclear aircraft carrier USS Enterprise, CVN 65, is on her last cruise. While other recently retired carriers have been retired as museum ships, as we all know, the Enterprise is a nuclear wessel. To get the reactors out, she will be left in too ugly a condition for display. There is a movement floating around Washington that the next unnamed carrier ought to be called Enterprise. Star Trek aside, just from the tradition of World War II's CV 6, I'd like to see this happen.