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HomeScience Fiction StoriesAdventures Across the Starways - Chapter 21

Adventures Across the Starways - Chapter 21

Contributing Authors: rbo 

"Oh gods, somebody help me!" she muttered as she struggled....

Sive leaned against the wall while listening to Murdock’s plan. She knew he had his own agenda, but for now, she needed him, and his plan needed her. “So that's pretty much it. Any questions or do you have anything to add?” he asked. Sive bit her lip thinking what to say. “Doctor?” Murdock asked raising his eyebrow at her.

Trying to keep her temper in check she replied, "First off call me Sive, I don’t need my real name being mentioned or overheard… ever! Is that understood?” When both men nodded their heads, Sive took a step back. They watched in awe as she changed her appearance becoming the bounty hunter who had infiltrated the Tainted Angel. Once done she continued, “I stand before you as Victor. He tried to kidnap me… and failed. He got dumped on a desert planet with no means to contact anyone, so for now, his identity is available. When I look like this, you will call me Victor... Got that?”

Murdock was silent for a moment as he eyed Victor up, trying to adjust to what he had just witnessed. He'd seen many fascinating things in his life but never anything quite like this before.

"Amazing! Truly amazing!" Zark whispered as he stared, "I have never seen anything like it. I must get a sample of your DNA. Please tell me what it feels like to..."

Sive glared at Zark, “In your dreams buster!” she quickly stated cutting Zark off mid-sentence. “It's enough I have to hide from the world. No way will anyone else know how I came to be this way.”

Zark did not look pleased. Sive was sure he would be plotting to take a sample and for that reason would keep an eye on him at all times. Eventually, Murdock spoke, interrupting the silence and dirty looks Zark and Sive were giving each other. "Enough Zark, she er... he is going to help us retake my ship, and that's the top priority for now. If you're lucky, you will be able to get some scans once you get back to the medical bay. Right now I need you to follow my orders and shut down the air filtration system and prepare several vials of the antidote for Sive's pheromones. When done you will wait for us there and stay out of sight of Fido’s men.”

Zark's reluctantly looked away from Sive and nodded, "Yes Captain," he replied before heading off leaving Murdock and Sive alone.

"Sorry about that er... Victor. He is a Narlen, a brilliant doctor, and exo-biologist. He knows more about all the different life forms in the known universe than anyone I have ever met. But he does have a tendency to obsess about things. He is just curious about you... he is perfectly harmless.

Sive rolled her eyes thinking “Men always want something from me, though at least it isn’t my body this time.” She nodded her head for him to continue.

“Now our next course of action is to get to the armoury and load up on weapons. From there we'll proceed to the crew's quarters and gather any loyal men we come across. As soon as the air filtration system is offline, I want you to change ... your looks again. Once done I want you to head for the bridge while the rest of the men and I make our way over to engineering."

Murdock slowed down as he talked. He noticed a slight buzzing in his ear, then decided to ignore it. As he continued along, he couldn't help but be fascinated by this woman.

Sive listened as Murdock outlined the rest of his plan. When he was finished speaking, he paused to see if she was on board with it. As Sive listened, she saw his face shimmer ever so slightly. She blinked and looked at him closer watching for any sign of the nanites. “Have the nanites reproduced enough in his body to show? Or did I imagine that shimmer? I'd better keep a close eye on this man. If he gains control of them, who knows what he will be capable of?” Sive followed the Captain down the corridor, nodding and pretending to listen as she worried about what she may have unintentionally created. “The nanites in Jason were not so prolific. I have to find a way to shut them down. What if they evolved so they can spread on their own? The whole universe could be in serious trouble. I have to get control of them somehow. Otherwise, this man could be the first of many. Ugh... what a nightmare that would be!”

Sive briefly closed her eyes and concentrated, trying to shut down the nanites replication activities. Hoping it would be similar to when she had summoned pheromones or when she changed her appearance. She felt them change. She expected all within the range of her, had also been shut down. Unfortunately, this included the ones inside of her. She realized she wouldn't be able to leave them off forever.

Meanwhile Zark had finally returned to the medical bay. He had deliberately taken the long route and avoided all crew members. Once inside he locked the door and proceeded to prepare six injection tubes of a concoction of concentrated herbs and adrenalin mix. When finished he sighed to himself thinking about the changeling woman Sive. He thought,  "If only I could convince her to let me study her, maybe get some blood samples. The things I could discover!" He continued to think along those lines as he put the vials in a safety pouch and slipped it into his lab coat.

While Zark was busy in the lab, Murdock and Sive hesitated when they got near the armoury. As they expected, there were guards... three of them. Murdock signalled Sive to stand back while he made sure his gun was on stun before advancing. He managed to stun the first man before he had even seen him. The second had fallen before the third had his hand on his weapon, and that man was unconscious before it was drawn.

Murdock grinned as he and Sive dragged the bodies into the armoury. "Can you change into one of these men?" he requested in a quiet voice so he wouldn't be overheard.

Sive dropped the feet of the man she had dragged in. Luckily, she was stronger in this form, since the last of the three was twice her size. Raising her eyebrow at Murdock. She could see he was enjoying himself. Sighing she shook her head at him before replying, "It's best I stick to the ones close to my mass, she looked down at the three unconscious men. So it's either pimple face here or,” she looked at the man Murdock had dragged in and for the first time noticed the odour wafting from him. She glanced back up at Murdock and replied, “Or the one who stinks. Bringing her hand up to her nose, she added,” I believe you should establish an order that all your men have to shower at least once a week! Yeeew!" Her eyes started to smart causing her to put a few feet of distance between them.

Murdock stifled a smirk, looking seriously at Sive.

"Alright... alright, I get it this is serious business. I'll be stinky but without the stink." She grinned at her own wit, but Murdock's face didn’t flicker. “Serious bastard,” she mumbled to herself as she concentrated on the small, outrageously smelly man.

Murdock took a case full of blasters and bag of stun grenades. He tucked two of the blasters in his belt and two of the grenade in his pocket before offering a blaster to Sive, as she went to take it he pulled it away

“What is your problem?” She whispered sharply.

"Before I give you a gun, you will have to complete your disguise and put Stinky's clothes on.” He got great satisfaction at her scowl before he continued, “After all, you have got to look and smell the part. Then you'll help me gather what men are still loyal to me and then go our separate ways. You to the bridge and the rest of us to engineering." He smirked when she turned away, but she saw it from the corner of her eye. “I'll get him for this one day!”

Sive's sighed as she looked at the man who's form she had chosen. He was the only one small enough for her transform into without looking odd. She moaned quietly to herself as she drew near again. He really did reek to high heaven! Her eyes started smarting again. She tried not to heave and was beginning to hate it when Murdock got that smirk on his face. She directed her nanites to kill her sense of smell. Seconds later she smiled, deciding not to tell Murdock this. “Let the man suffer!”

"Turn around while I change into these stinking rags!" she ordered. Once Murdock had complied, she quickly yanked the top and then the pants off the unconscious man. She closed her eyes for a few seconds thinking, “I am so glad I can't smell him anymore.” Still, she didn’t want these dirt encrusted clothes next to her skin. "Oh gods, somebody help me!" she muttered as she struggled to pull the stained shirt over her head, hoping she wouldn't end up smelling like this permanently.

Deep down Murdock was a gentleman. As he waited, he mused, looking at a semi-naked man wasn't interesting even if he knew it was really a woman. He had several women serving on his ships. Darla even frequented his bedchamber, but this woman intrigued him. He suddenly heard Sive mutter, "Oh gods, somebody help me!" he glanced over seeing her stuck unable to get her head through the shirt hole. Murdock laughed out loud. It was one of the funniest things he had ever seen! There was this small hairy man in lady's lacy black bra and panties, dancing around with his head caught in a t-shirt. When he was finally done laughing, he grabbed the edge of the shirt and with a quick yank pulled it over Sive's head.

Sive gasped as Murdock pulled the shirt down. She had never felt so filthy in her entire life. She noticed that he stepped away after getting one good sniff saying, "Once we are done you can burn that outfit, and I'll get you a new one after showing you to the crew quarters... one with a sonic shower." With a snarl, Sive grimly nodded at him.

He passed the gun to Sive as promised. Then he grabbed a magna-handle and a miniature welder off the shelf and slotted it onto his wrist. After tying up the unconscious men, he nodded his head indicating it was time for the next phase of his plan.

Meanwhile in the Medical Bay Zark started to walk towards the surgery room. He wasn't a fighter and therefore was very glad Murdock had ordered him to remain here. He had turned the air filtration program off and was about to find a place to hide and relax when the door suddenly opened. Zark ducked behind one of the desks. He peered around the edge and saw two crewmen walk in.

"This is stupid. If Fido has control of the ship why doesn't he just kill Murdock and be done with it!" the bigger one complained.

"Cause he is scared of what the other captains might do. Some of them owe Murdock big time. That's why Dumbass! Even if Fido reports it was an accident, one or more of the others captains will want control of Murdock's ships and the booty stores.” The smaller of the pair replied with a sneer.

"Well, something has got to change. Three ships have left Murdock's control since he took over from his father and the remaining captains are only holding on due to loyalty to his old man. The ships already work alone only being called together for major jobs. And when was the last time we had one of those? Plus Murdock's choices of jobs aren’t as profitable as the old captain's. I just don't reckon he's will ever be as good as his old man was."

Zark crawled into the surgery room. The men were looking for something and were quite oblivious that he was here. He had stupidly left his gun on his desk. He couldn't get to it. If they found him would they kill him? He huddled in a dark corner of the surgery trying not to tremble.

In the meantime Sive and Murdock cautiously stepped out of the armoury. As the door closed Murdock placed his artificial hand against the door panel... nothing happened. "Damn not recharged yet!", He whispered. He used the welder to melt the lock. "That will keep them out of our way, but it also may have set off an alarm, so we better get a move on!” Sive nodded agreement.

They swiftly ran down the corridor until they got to the lift. Murdock looked at the maintenance panel and used the welder again this time melting the small screws that held it in place. Placing the magna handle against the panel, he easily removed it from the wall revealing a long tunnel. He whispered, "We need to go along this corridor and up two decks. Keep as quiet as you can."

Sive climbed in thinking, “I hate tight spots...he is going to owe me big time for this!” Murdock, who lifted the panel back into place soon followed her. He used the welder to seal them in.

It was quite dark in the maintenance tunnel, apart from clear tubes which glowed with blue energy, there was no light. Keeping his voice low, Murdock said, "I suggest we move quickly. I'm not expecting anyone to find us, but your, ahh... odour in this confined space is most unpleasant." Sive stopped narrowing her eyes, “Oh, you will pay for that one!” Out of spite, she moved slower now, forgetting her dislike of small areas. She grinned to herself, unable to smell while Murdock complained pitifully. It made all this worthwhile.

Murdock had stopped seeing the funny side of Sive wearing the smelly clothes. It was hot in the tunnels, and she was deliberately moving slower. His eyes watered as he wiped his brow wondering if Sive sweated. Out loud he uttered, "I believe I'm going to enforce your suggestion. All crew members will shower at least once a week and change his or her clothing too! Resistance will be futile!"

Sive chuckled quietly and moved a bit faster now, wanting to get this over with. Eventually, they found themselves in the region of the crew's quarters. Murdock connected the Magna handle and melted the screws. When suddenly they heard two voices. Murdock whispered, “Heads up!”

"You sure the captain is gone?" a woman's voice asked.

"Who cares? Fido is in charge now." a man replied breathing heavily. Murdock recognized the voices. The woman was Darla, and the man was the new helmsman Smithe

She leaned against the panel Murdock was supporting. "I want you now lover!" she cooed seductively. Suddenly they were kissing and ripping each other's clothes off.

"Your stupid pheromones?" Murdock mouthed to Sive while trying to hold the panel still as the Darla continued to moan and bang up against it every time Smithe pounded into her.

Murdock slowly braced the panel against his shoulder and tried to weld one corner to hold the panel in place. Sweat was running down his back. He didn't even care about the smell anymore. All he could think about was Darla. “She was supposed to be my woman! She really is a skank! When all this is sorted out I'm going to dump her ass!”

Slowly he backed away and breathed out. "Another law I'm going to introduce is no matter how horny you get no fucking outside your quarters!"

Smithe groaned as he continued to pound away, banging Darla up against the panel while she was trying and failing to keep her screams to a minimum. "Fuck yes, yes, oh fuck, harder faster! Fuck I'm so close, give it to me! Ahhhhhh!" Suddenly the panel's weld failed, and it fell outward, hitting Smithe on the head.

Murdock looked at Sive, as he swore loudly while Darla let out a long satisfied moan and Smithe slumped to the floor.

Back at the Medical Bay Zark was trying to stay out of sight. The smaller man had come into the surgery to snoop around. Luckily Zark had managed to scramble into the store cupboard, being a Narlen meant he was quite flexible.

His mate had called him back into the main room leaving Zark alone. He heard the guy pushing buttons which were causing his console to bleep! Zark blinked hoping he wasn't doing any permanent damage.

"What do you think that alien was doing?" the big guy asked as he continued to play with the consul.

"It looks like he was busy with some kind of program....I don't know! That Narlen always freaked me out, what with his questions and always wanted to take samples!"

The computer suddenly announced, "Bio-Contamination program activated."

"What did you do?"

"Nothing… I think,” the big guy squeaked as he backed off.

"Don't touch anything else Dumb-ass!"

“Geez, I was only having a look,”

Zark quietly cursed, he looked at the alarms and was glad they hadn't gone off. The rest of the ship wouldn't know the program was running. “Those stupid men,” Zark thought, “They must have turned the program back on! The shape shifter's pheromones won't work now! I somehow need to warn the others!”

Simultaneously back at the service tunnel entrance to the crew's quarters. Murdock poked his head out of the tunnel and looked at Darla, while Sive leaned against the wall and tried not to laugh.




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