6.21 - Ascent | Stuck Station

6.21 - Ascent

Aug 02 2011 Published by under Chapter Six

"Like you'd ever meet Alitma," she said, laughing.

She doesn't know what I've done since she left me, Daniel thought sadly.  Maybe she didn't care enough to find out. 

Jeska's laughter ended in a wince of pain.

Medicloud must have missed something, Jeska thought.

“You hurt?” Daniel asked, his self-pity replaced with concern.

"I’m fine," she said, in a voice that told him she was not. “Doesn’t matter. You sure this …  ship can fly?

“Yes. It’s sturdier than it looks,” he said, and then jumped back in terror as a rusty pipe fell from the Afterthought's hull and clanged against the lift exterior.

“Don’t worry about that,” he said, doing a poor job hiding his embarrassment.

“Anyway, I need to check you out..." he said running his eyes down her body.

"Daniel ... " she said blushing slightly.

"I mean, your vitals," he said. "Check out your vitals. We need to have the ship's systems check you out."

He hadn't been leering at her. He had been examining her for injuries.

“Oh,” she said, feeling stupid.

Daniel wondered if the ship's medicloud diagnostic system could examine Jeska without Rachel there to manage the machinery.

He thought about it longer and felt relieved Rachel wasn’t there.

He remembered what happened when Rachel had given Jeska a routine medical examination on his last ship, the Bon Voyage.

After performing the preliminary scan, Rachel had anesthetized Jeska, shaved her bald and tattooed “Spoiled Human” across her forehead.

Having had years to think about it, Daniel admitted it was pretty funny in retrospect.

Then he remembered it had been pretty funny then, too.

But he never told Jeska that.

Stuck On: Pranks

Social morays change, especially in a time when the architecture around you, and, indeed, your very body can be transformed quickly by nanotechnology.

In early human culture, a tattoo and a unwanted head-shaving would be a shameful, heinous act, ruining the reputation of both people involved.

But by the 2700s – when tattoos aren’t permanent and you can regrow hair in seconds – it was an insult and a mild inconvenience at most.

Rachel-7's prank was the equivalent of marking someone's arm with a dot of non-permanent ink.

For a further discussion of human pranks in the 28th-century please read Professor Edii Fnewfnaw's seminal work: Terran Humor: Why Whoopie Cushions are Still Funny. 

14 responses so far

  • CalLadyQED says:

    Yeah, I'll admit to finding that kind of funny myself.

  • Rebecca says:

    Daniel has issues...

  • Rebecca says:

    And what if Rachel had stripped Daniel naked and tattooed "Drunkard" on his for head?
    Would that have been funny?
    I wonder if Daniel really loves Jeska the way he wishes to think he does...

    • John says:

      Lol, being stripped naked is very very very different from having your head shaved.

      Oh you mean for the examination. ... in the future you don't have to be stripped naked for your physical. Imagine the great, great, great, great descendant of MRI machines.

    • John says:

      But because I could easily see how the line could be read that way, I clarified it so that it says "scan" instead of "check-up."

  • Rebecca says:

    No. You understood it correctly at first.

    Having your head shaved for the majority of women would be the hight of humiliation, about the same to a man being stripped naked (unless he is a nut case).

    I don't think it is funny at all and I question Daniel's ability to find it funny.

    Is he really in love with Jeska, or just in love with being a "hero" ?

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