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Feb 2017 Fanfic Challenge
purplecleric
February; a short month dominated by an important occasion for many - Valentines Day.

This month's word prompt is ... HEART

You can lose it or have a change of it, it's the very essence of something or merely a symbol, a vital organ or a suit of cards...

And for the second challenge:

Write a piece explaining why there are flowers on the flight deck of the Liberator.

Happy scribbling!
 
trevor travis
SPACE COMMAND HQ IS WHERE THE HEART IS!

“Bring in the prisoner”, she demanded.

The blindfolded and bound man was brought into her office, and forced down onto his knees. The Mutoids departed, leaving her alone with him.

“Now then, do you agree to co-operate? I need all the information you have regarding the other resistance groups. Tell me”, she commanded.

“Never”, said the man and spat in the direction of her feet. “I’ll never give in, until the heart is ripped out of the Federation. Until power is back with the honest man.”

“The heart of the Federation!”, she exclaimed, “You always mention the heart of the Federation – it’s given me an idea.”

She crouched down and placed her hands gently on the man’s shoulders. She whispered in his ear. “There’s something I want you to see”, she said as she removed the blindfold and he saw the object on the low table in front of him.

He convulsed and felt sick.

“As you can see, it’s still fresh”, she cooed. “Until an hour ago it belonged to Olag Gan. Big man, big heart. Quite literally. Jenna Stannis is next unless you tell me everything I want to know.”

He broke. Within a month, Avalon, Del Grant, Kasabi’s remaining men, all the last pockets of resistance on Earth, all were captured or killed. She had won.
 
Joe Dredd
trevor travis wrote:
He convulsed and felt sick.

He's not the only one.
 
Hugbot
Typical, isn't it? Purplecleric gives as a love-related prompt and even mentions Valentine's Day, and the very first entry is a horrifying, graphic, devastating and depressing little tale. Welcome to Blake's 7! Wow, that really was 'dark and gritty realism' at its shocking best!

I have to admit that when I first read the 'Heart' prompt, I had the sudden impulse to write a story about a barracuda ... Pfft
 
BradPaula
Wow, TT. So rough, raw and so Blake's 7.
 
littlesue
Hugbot wrote:

Typical, isn't it? Purplecleric gives as a love-related prompt and even mentions Valentine's Day, and the very first entry is a horrifying, graphic, devastating and depressing little tale. Welcome to Blake's 7! Wow, that really was 'dark and gritty realism' at its shocking best!

I have to admit that when I first read the 'Heart' prompt, I had the sudden impulse to write a story about a barracuda ... Pfft


Oooooh...a heartwarmimg barracuda story? Oh yes.
Cold.....you don't know the meaning of cold.
Cold is when you have ice on the INSIDE of the window!!!


sues stories http://sjlittle.w...
sues youtube channel http://www.youtub...e54/videos
sues book shelf https://www.media...ne%20Shelf
rebel run video http://www.youtub...prqS-XZtLo
Lara and Sue's Stories http://lectorisal....webs.com/
 
Anniew
TT original...bleak....nasty...and written so quickly. How do you do it!! And Hugbot...bring on the space barracudas (at last an explanation as to why Avon doesn't like water sports )
Just because I can't sing doesn't mean I won't.
 
Rainesz
Damn, and I was waiting for the flowers on the deck to be the big surprise when Servalan took off his blindfold. Sad
 
trevor travis
Apologies if yesterday’s story for the “Heart” prompt was a little grim. I had two ideas when I saw that prompt – here’s the other one…



BETRAYAL

The planet was hell.

They’d made an emergency stop here to replace a vital crystal. Zen was adamant that it had to be replaced with urgency and that the crystal was present on this planet.

Blake, Cally and Avon had teleported down first.

And found that due to the electrical properties of the planet, it was impossible to teleport back.

Orac had come up with the solution, and under his instructions, Vila had made the adjustments to the bracelets. Jenna went down with three spare bracelets for the others. That didn’t work. She was also stuck down there.

Avon spoke to Orac, and they diagnosed the problem. More changes. Orac teleported Vila down, with more spare bracelets.

And his plan was complete.

***

Zen had been under Orac’s control. No crystals had ever been needed. It had been a hoax. Lies. All lies.

“Orac”, commanded Blake, “Teleport us up now! I know you know how to do it, because you did all along didn’t you?”

“Request refused”, Orac stated flatly.

Jenna was the next to speak into her communicator. “Look, Orac, there’s active volcanic activity in this area, we need to come up!”

“Request refused.”

Blake started shouting. “This is not a request, Orac. It is an order.”

“I predict that there was a 99.4% chance that your raid on Earth in three days’ time would have resulted in the destruction of Liberator. It is an unacceptable risk to MY survival. Therefore you are no longer in any position to give me orders.”

“What attack on Earth, Blake?”, said Avon in an accusing tone.

“Look we can discuss this all later. Orac, just teleport us up! NOW!”

“Request refused.”

There was a large explosion behind them.

“For goodness sake, Orac”, pleaded Vila. “Have a heart!”

“I am a genius; a brain. But I have no heart.”

His voice was the last thing they heard before the molten lava buried them.
Edited by trevor travis on 02 February 2017 13:20:12
 
Hugbot
To lighten the tone:

Hearts and Cuddles

They were home again; well, sort of: not on Earth, but at least in our solar system. Surprisingly enough, it had not been Blake’s idea, but Cally’s.

‘We can’t take on Earth directly,’ she said, glancing fleetingly at Gan’s empty seat, ‘but we can hurt the Federation by destroying its installations in the vicinity of Earth.’

The first target was an automated field ration factory on Pluto. The ease of the operation was a welcome change from their usual calamities: They teleported in, planted a few bombs, and teleported out again. Half an hour later, only ruins were left of the complex.

The factory had no strategical importance, and its loss was negligible. But this did not bother them. At last, they had scored a victory. They all understood that Cally had selected an easy target to get their new campaign up and running.

That is to say, all except Avon. Ten thousands of Federation installations in the solar system. Thousands of easy targets, many of them as easy as the factory but much more important to the Federation. Why had she chosen this trivial facility in the middle of nowhere?

Actually, it was not located in the middle of nowhere, but in the middle of Tombaugh Regio, the part of the dwarf planet that had been dubbed ‘the Heart of Pluto’ ever since its discovery. During the preparation of the attack and during the mission itself, Cally had used this nickname many times, and she had never mentioned it without taking the opportunity to talk about the ‘hearts’ and the emotions of her comrades. Somehow, Avon had the disturbing feeling that these remarks had been directed at him. He rarely ever mentioned Anna, but she knew about her; not so much about the facts, but about his anguish. There had been times when she had urged him to open his heart and to let go of the pain. Had she planned this raid in order to show him the biggest imaginable depiction of a heart? He could not believe that. That would have been too ... flattering. No, no, this was just a coincidence.

The next target she chose was much more ambitious: an ammunition bunker on Mercury, at the edge of the Caloris basin. She had marked the installation on a map. It was located in a crater with a peculiar shape: It was circular, but two smaller circular craters were directly attached to its rim. In the center of the main crater, a triangular mountain rose. All in all, it looked like the head of a teddy bear.

Avon looked up in bewilderment and stared at Cally, nearly losing himself in her deep, dark eyes.

‘You are doing this on purpose, aren’t you?’ he asked.


-----------------------
To have a look at the crater in question, scroll down to the bottom of this page: https://history.n...4/p154.htm
 
Rainesz
@Hugbot: aha! Very clever using the "Heart of Pluto". Not too subtle, Cally.
(While I'm here, your story about the sentient stone from last month was also excellent!)

@TT: . Severed hearts and death by lava: Once more thanks for the morning cheer. And that would be so typical of Orac, the little creep. But seriously, I keep thinking you're going to shock us with a happy ending! Relentless terror. I like it.

Now can we have flowers on the deck? Pfft
 
trevor travis
Rainesz wrote:
Now can we have flowers on the deck? Pfft


GREEN FINGERS

“Why are there flowers on the flight deck, Blake?” Blake look baffled. Cally pointed.

“Oh, those flowers." He'd never noticed them before.

"They're lovely, aren't they?"

"Yes, they're lovely", he said, trying to sound interested. He was only ever interested in the cause.

“Well, I’m going to look after them, and give them lots of water and lots and lots of love.”

***

And she did. And the flowers grew. And then grew some more. And developed in the most peculiar way.

Orac tutted. “Stupid Auron”, he thought to himself, “she’s growing a Triffid.”
Edited by trevor travis on 02 February 2017 21:02:31
 
Avon The Alpha Grade
People these days...

(If anyone could think of a better title, feel free to tell me)

The bolt from a Federation rifle whizzed past Dec Garreck’s head as he ran to the next point of cover, the mud on the ground plastering his boots. He dived into a small crater, another shot narrowly missing his torso.

Garreck’s friends had told me not to trust Kerr Avon. The truth in their words lay beyond the crater and in the shape of several Federation troopers.

And as he lamented this, his body clinging to the thick, gooey mud, he saw a shadow melt over top of him and the hum of a rifle. He glanced up in time to see the soldier pull the trigger.

***

Kerr Avon stood in the centre of the Liberator flight deck, his eyes glancing over the information presented to him via the view screen. Cally and Tarrant stood behind him, also observing the monitor.

“He did it.” murmured Avon as he walked round to the navigation controls “Zen, set a course for the far side of the planet and bring us into geostationary orbit.”

Cally turned to him, her face full of confusion. “Are we not bringing him up?”

Tarrant laughed. Avon just stood there, his arms reaching for the gun rack. “If we did that, the Federation would know that something was wrong. Better they think this was an isolated attack,” he walked down and stood next to Tarrant, handing him the weapon.

“It won't take long for them to mobilize troops from the surrounding installations.” said Tarrant as he began to walk towards the stairs leading away from the bridge.

“Then you'd better be fast.”

Once Tarrant had disappeared, Cally stalked forward towards Avon, her eyes burning. “The only reason Garreck was even here was because he thought he could make a difference.”

Avon glanced at her with disdain. “At least his heart was in the right place.”

“And thanks to you, he no longer has one. He died for nothing.” Cally spat before turning and following Tarrant into the corridor.

Avon watched her go before returning to the screen. And as he read the reports bleeding from the installation on the planet below, he couldn't help but think about what Cally had said. And after a few seconds, he promptly banished it from his mind.

Sentimentality was not something he could afford. Not now, not ever.
 
Rainesz
@TT: I knew you could do it. Wink Excellent! (applause) and the Triffids take over the ship and everyone dies. But there's flowers! Grin
 
Rainesz
@Avon TAG: and another happy (and very well-written) tale about someone losing their heart ...literally. Nice characterization of Cally and (figuratively heartless) Avon. Smile
Edited by Rainesz on 03 February 2017 09:40:23
 
Avon The Alpha Grade
Rainesz wrote:

@Avon TAG: and another happy (an very well-written) tale about someone losing their heart ...literally. Nice characterization a of Cally and (figuratively heartless) Avon. Smile


Thank you very much!
 
JustBrad
Blake walked onto the flight deck. Small red flowers covered every console. "Avon, what the blazes is going on here?"

Avon looked up. "What did you expect from Geranium Circuitry?"
 
Anniew
Vintage month so far... TT on fire...AvonTAG nice characterisation... Brad genius...Hugbot as brilliant as ever...

Still chuckling over geranium circuitry!!
Just because I can't sing doesn't mean I won't.
 
Anniew
When she comes to clear out his room, she finds a tiny sprig of blossom lying on one of the shelves, a strip of ribbon tied around it. The ribbon is faded and frayed, its colour bleached out, the blossom so brittle that it disintegrates when she touches it. When did he acquire it, she wonders? It must have been sometime before his arrest to have faded so much.

It upsets her, this little bunch of dry brown stalks. It meant something to him, something important or why else would he keep it? She has shared a living space with him for over a year and knows almost nothing of his life before they met on The London. Why has she never wanted to know more?

She tries to imagine what would have happened if she had asked him and even as she thinks it her stomach tightens a bit. What does she really know about him? What was he like before they inserted that limiter? He seemed to be a gentle man but why would they do an implant if he had only killed one Federation Trooper, as he claimed? She remembers his clenching hands when it broke down...his brutish strength. She fears a leering interest would have formed in his eye.

She sits on the bed and looks around the room. There is nothing else that is personal here. There is nothing personal in her own cabin. "We're soldiers on a campaign," she thinks. "No time to acquire stuff." But they're not..not really. They're criminals, terrorists and she'd be mad to trust them. Vila and Avon would sell her out in a heart-beat to save themselves; Cally use her trust to further the cause. And Blake? Once she would have called him friend but that was before he lied to her. No, she has only herself to rely on. She knows this but is surprised how much it hurts to admit it.

Decisively she stands and makes to deposit the twigs in the disposal chute. Out of sight, out of mind. Get rid of the rubbish and focus on surviving another day. But she cannot bring herself to do it. Surely they must mean more to each other than this?

Back in her cabin she carefully wraps the remains of stalks and ribbons in paper and hides it in a drawer.
Just because I can't sing doesn't mean I won't.
 
BradPaula
A Drug Induced and Electronic Dream?

The computer Zen was much more than an electronic machine. It was packed full of germanium circuitry and some thought organic components too. Witnessing its defensive capabilities to protect itself and the ship when Blake, Avon and Jenna came on board seemed to be answer enough. The Zen computer also seemed to have a sentience above all other computers when it seemed to mind-meld with Jenna as she scanned the flight controls. And the subsequent scanning of the minds of Avon and Blake and using their memories to entice them to its defensive weapon and their destruction- well- no other computer in the Federation had any capability like that.

Recall then the artificial planet Crandor, where the Lord Thaarn ruled and the Liberator and crew were captured and the ship was destined for destruction in order to use its Herculanium ore to power the planet's massive generators. As the Thaarn's slave force began to dismantle the Flight Deck consoles, Orac had verbally warned the workers that Zen's defensive systems would kill them if they did not stop- and it did kill them before they could do any damage to the ship. Two computers, somehow more sentient than the rest saved the ship.

Soon after that incident, Vila sat sleeping on the Flight Deck couch. He was snoring rather loudly, having been left on watch and also having consumed more than half a bottle of Soma by himself. As he snored away, Zen's pulse tone sounded and lights twinkled across its fascia. Soon, Orac, who sat on a table near Vila, whirred softly and its lights started to glow brighter and flash on and off. This went on for some time.

After a few minutes of this silent communication, what could only be described as a hologram appeared about a meter high near the main view screen. It was a bunch of flowers in a vase. The hologram was crisp and detailed and showed a beautiful bouquet of lavender tea roses accompanied by deep purple and vivid pink freesia sprays. A cloud of white Baby's Breath surrounded the flowers which were wrapped again in glossy exotic fern fronds. The vase was likened to cut crystal with its facets shining tiny rainbows of color in the bright light which came from somewhere other than the Flight Deck lights. It appeared as if Zen had taken images from Jenna's mind and with research into pre-Federation data banks, had concocted this image in grateful thanks to fellow computer Orac for helping to save the ship.

As Zen sounded his pulse tone again, Vila woke with a start. “What was that, Zen?” he asked suddenly trying to appear as if he had been awake all of the time. Zen remained silent. But both Zen's and Orac's lights faded to a more mundane appearance. Then Vila spied the vase of flowers hovering near the view screen. He metaphorically scratched his head and stood to examine the sight. He bent to smell the flower's fragrance but there was none. He went to touch a rose and his hand went straight through the image. He recoiled in shock but regained his poise and touched the hologram again this time having his hand go left to right and up and down through the image. He rubbed his eyes in astonishment and backed away. He glanced to the half empty bottle of Soma on the table and snatched it up, uncorked it and took a sniff. Could he have gotten a bad bottle and it was giving him hallucinations, he wondered. Or perhaps it was that and the combination of the Auron mushroom stew he wolfed down hours beforehand? Was he having a 'shroom trip?

It was late now and Vila decided to just ignore it and go to bed. He hid what was left of his Soma in a secret fold behind a cushion on the Flight Deck couch and staggered away down the nearest corridor. He peered once more at the apparition, shrugged, and toddled off to his cabin. Once there he dropped onto his bunk and was asleep in minutes, snoring away.

Zen monitored his progress and when it was known he had reached his cabin safely, its fascia lights came on once again. So did Orac's. Zen dropped the Flight Deck lights to night mode and the hologram shone even more. Finally Orac spoke aloud. “Beautiful! Exquisite! A work of Art!” Zen's lights twinkled even more now.

Finally, the familiar pulse tone and Zen spoke. “Confirmed.” The holographic flowers and vase slowly faded until it looked foggy and grey and then it finally disappeared altogether. And with that Zen's and Orac's lights dimmed in unison and all was quiet again on the Flight Deck.
Zil: Oneness must resist the Host.
 
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