Mustered Out on Mertactor

085-1107

The Humbling of Dr. Joshey

Fortunately for Will and Dr. Amrish Van Donkersguud, the discussion on Zhodani Terraforming methods is not until the fourth day of the forum and so they have plenty of time to work on their defense, incorporating the first-hand information that they have received from the Baron.

Although Will is kept busy for the duration, the other party members find themselves at a bit of a loose end. They attend a few of the lectures on the first day but soon realize that it’s about as interesting for them as watching paint dry. Fortunately, there are plenty of other more interesting entertainment options available to them at the huge resort and casino complex and so they find other ways of amusing themselves, often joined by the Baron who seems little more interested in the goings-on at the Forum than the party members.

The party members do, however, come to the Zhodani Terraforming conference in order to give Will some moral support. Dr. Amrish, Will and the Baron sit at a table on one side of the stage, while Dr. Joshey and a couple of his cronies sit on the opposite side. Dr. Joshey flashes Will a smug grin as he straightens his copious amount of notes.

Dean Chouan makes the introductions:

“And now we go onto Seminar 405A on our agenda for the Forum, which is ‘Implementation and Observations of Zhodani Terraforming Techniques and the Application and Ramifications as they relate to the current state of Imperial Methodology in the Sphere’.”

“I would like to introduce to you firstly Dr. Anders Joshey and his team of Dr. Mikel Squires and Dr. Pablo Renata.”

Jie starts to shout out. “BOO! GET OUT OUT HERE! HISS!”

She seems oblivious of the fact that the entire audience is now staring at her while applauding politely.

“And then I would like to introduce you to, on the opposing side, Dr. Amrish Van Donkersguud, William Shaunnessy and Baron Hasse von Harkhoost,” the Dean adds.

Jie leaps to her feet and lets out an almighty cheer followed by an ear-splitting whistle. She then tries to start off a Mexican Wave, much to the bemusement of the politely clapping academics in the audience.

The Baron’s butler glides towards Jie and gently taps her on her shoulder.

“Excuse me, milady, but this is not the Galactic Wrestling Federation,” he whispers to her. “Perhaps madam may be best advised to act with a little more decorum.”

Jie sits back down again, her cheeks blushing a little at making yet another cultural faux pas.

The debate then commences, with Dr. Joshey’s team making their argument. Within ten seconds of his opening, the party members are already completely lost as to what the hell it is that he is talking about. The rest of the audience seems fascinated by it, however. The party members watch the reaction of William and his team, but they are simply sitting back and listening, their stony-faces betraying no emotion.

After half an hour, Dr. Joshey and his team sum up and sit down, to a ripple of applause from the audience.

Dr. Amrish Van Donkersguud then gets up, clears his throat, and starts off with his counter-argument. Once again, he may as well be speaking in Zhodani for all that the other party members understand of what he is saying. By the time that the Doctor has sat down 15 minutes later, the smug grins on the faces of Dr. Joshey and his colleagues have been wiped from their faces. The Baron takes over. He’s a natural raconteur rather than an academic and speaks in a style that even some of the party members can understand what he is saying. As he continues to talk, chuckles start to come from some of the audience which grow through the course of his speech to giggles and then full blown laughs. From the reddening of the faces of Team Joshey, it is obvious that the Baron is shredding Joshey’s theories into pieces and the audience is loving it. The Baron receives an enthusiastic round of applause before he hands over to Will for the final ten minutes. Will carries on where the Baron left off, although his academic style is once again a little difficult for the laymen in the audience to understand. The academics are eating it up though. Now it seems as if, whenever Will makes a point, it is met with deep belly laughs from the audience. Dr. Joshey’s face is now a bright crimson color – he is obviously incandescent with rage now.

Will finishes off with his closing summary and then sits down. The academics in the audience all leap to their feet and give Team Donkersguud a standing ovation. Dr. Joshey can’t stand the humiliation any longer. He rips the mic from his lapel, tosses it onto the table, kicks his chair over and then storms off the stage, with his two minions following close behind him.

Will, the Doctor and the Baron all congratulate one another for a job well done and then head off into the audience to receive the adulation of their fellow academics. They spend the rest of the day in the hotel bar, being feted and heartily congratulated by their peers and being interviewed by the academic press.

Grim comes up to Will after the end of the presentation and claps him on the shoulder, saying, “All this time I was giving you grief you theorists about not making anything real and here you and your associates are spending all your spare time building the most important thing of all- home planets for Humaniti! Allow me to buy you a drink…”

After a few drinks, Grim says, “So the imported biologics, the algaes and plants act as the scrubbers, just like a ship’s air filters, I get that, but how do you balance the…”

And, after a few more drinks, “Will, my good man, I always knew I liked you but, wait, this’ll be too cool…no, really!{burp} Let’s make you into a real Engineer! There’s a strip club I know in Glisten City and, see, the best thing is, it’s right next to a tattoo shop that caters to the Imperial Engineers {raises glass to Emperor!} where we could get you a cool tattoo! {head nods a little, then comes back up} Er, excuse me! As I was saying, you need a cool tattoo! How about a crossed spanner and sliderule set over a planet? …wait, what was I saying? Oh yeah {slurs} there’s a girl I know on….”

Finally, after a few more and after challenging Jie to arm wrestle and almost tearing his bicep-
{snoring, head on table}

Will is very grateful to everyone who has directly or indirectly helped him get revenge on Joshey. He buys all his friends unlimited drinks for the evening and even sends the conference organizers a lovely bouquet of real flowers for the wonderful writeup they did of the debate in the conference proceedings. He even promises to go with Grim to the tatoo parlour/strip club/brothel he’s been going on about all night. Secretly he thinks that a tatoo of a planet surmounted by crossed sliderule and spanner sounds pretty cool. He flexes a bicep thinking about it…

He also arranges to send Jie a special bouquet of blood-coloured roses with huge stabby thorns as a special thanks for her support during the debate. He hopes thats the kind of flowers that might appeal to her.

Comments

Yep, that’s what SOC-2 will do for a person. Jie hangs her head in shame.

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Grim comes up to Will after the end of the presentation and claps him on the shoulder, saying, “All this time I was giving you grief you theorists about not making anything real and here you and your associates are spending all your spare time building the most important thing of all- home planets for Humaniti! Allow me to buy you a drink…”

After a few drinks, Grim says, “So the imported biologics, the algaes and plants act as the scrubbers, just like a ship’s air filters, I get that, but how do you balance the…”

And, after a few more drinks, “Will, my good man, I always knew I liked you but, wait, this’ll be too cool…no, really!{burp} Let’s make you into a real Engineer! There’s a strip club I know in Glisten City and, see, the best thing is, it’s right next to a tattoo shop that caters to the Imperial Engineers {raises glass to Emperor!} where we could get you a cool tattoo! {head nods a little, then comes back up} Er, excuse me! As I was saying, you need a cool tattoo! How about a crossed spanner and sliderule set over a planet? …wait, what was I saying? Oh yeah {slurs} there’s a girl I know on….”

Finally, after a few more and after challenging Jie to arm wrestle and almost tearing his bicep-
{snoring, head on table}

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Will is very grateful to everyone who has directly or indirectly helped him get revenge on Joshey. He buys all his friends unlimited drinks for the evening and even sends the conference organizers a lovely bouquet of real flowers for the wonderful writeup they did of the debate in the conference proceedings. He even promises to go with Grim to the tatoo parlour/strip club/brothel he’s been going on about all night. Secretly he thinks that a tatoo of a planet surmounted by crossed sliderule and spanner sounds pretty cool. He flexes a bicep thinking about it…

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Oh, and he also sends Jie a special bouquet of blood-coloured roses with huge stabby thorns as a special thanks for her support during the debate. He hopes thats the kind of flowers that might appeal to her.

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Hidden in the rose stems is a box of expensive ammo.

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Taeva turns to Jie ((place in appropriate log when its typed Nick)).

“I understand where you’re coming from but this isn’t a military battlefield. It’s like this: if we surrender we place ourselves-and Arvor-and Grim (if they’re alive) completely in the hands of our enemies.

Our enemies are allies of the Ine Givar-who wouldn’t hesitate to set a busload of babies on fire if they had too.

The best thing for them is if we quietly dissappear. If we’re all at their ‘mercy’ we’ll do just that. Surrendering to them is the same as being Dead.

While we’re alive we’re a problem, and we have some power however limited. They need to worry about us. And I intend to make them worry."

Other things to check for are a first aid kit (go Jie) and stuff like ducts etc.

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“At the momnent Grim and Arvor are just weapons to them to get us to surrender. Once we do that they have us-and we all die. This isn’t a battlefield with military conventions or a duelling piste – its Live or Die. If you want to die Jie, there’s weapons lying about-do it now and save yourself a nasty death. I intend to Live, and I could do with your help. Can I rely on you or not?”

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NickPendrell

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