This idea comes from my editor, the amazing Sasha Vorun, of Ninestar Press. It’s as canon as you want it to be. I’ve always daydreamed about the being who commissioned the singular Lucidity and what that person had in mind. It was always meant to be a sort of ‘I have too much money and like things my way’ ship, but how, then does it end up at a shipyard in the middle of the Alliance?
This piece is short, like all the micro fiction I’m putting up here on the blog. But it’s also a story about a cute little acorn ship for a very eccentric Keft, and maybe also a bit about Salesblob’s extended family.
(Salesblob gets fan mail. I love you people)
“Okay but what about green? Have you considered polka dots?” Vas E’Nud, a Keft gatoi in a blue and red polka dotted dress, crouched down to inspect the underside of the silver acorn shaped ship that had just been delivered. Zie’d ordered it over a year ago, from a specialty manufacturer on the other side of the Alliance. Same style as most Keft ships, of course, one didn’t want to stand out too much, but with some very significant upgrades.
A man of nondescript bipedal origin scratched the side of his calf and frowned. He let the spray gun in his hand fall to his side. “I have four color options, friend. Green, black, and two shades of something called ‘pomegranate.’ If you want anything else you have to special order it.”
“Oh I will.” Zie waved the man off and stood. The interior was set–that was all factory install. Where the standard Keft ship was mostly cargo hold, Vas had expanded the galley and added a game room. The ‘stem’ portion of the ship had been ballooned as well, giving more of a vestibule appearance to the cockpit, which could now easily seat four in the plush chairs zie’d had installed. Each of the five sleeping quarters had their own small universal lavatory that would service anything from a gelatinous zooplankton to a Mmnnuggl.
And carpet. Oh, the carpet. Deep, plush, and a different color for every room. Vas loved carpet. Digging your bare toes into those springy fibers felt like a moss that wasn’t crawling with bugs. The walls were all painted, too, some even with paneling. The interior was perfect.
Which was why the exterior was such an issue.
Vas paced around the ship, sitting on its own in the center of zir private docking port the largest of Keft’s orbital stations. Zir grandfather owned this station and three others and Vas could berth the ship wherever zie wanted, but this port had the best view of the wasteland planet of Keft. Vas had never visited but had seen plenty of photos. The ship–zie really needed to name it–felt like a gift to zir ancestral homeward. Something beautiful to look at, in the sight of something so ugly.
“Something shimmery,” Vas muttered to zirself. “Not too bright, but it should catch the light. Maybe I could highlight the fins–why is this here!?” Zie punched a small indent where a laser port fanned from the biometal. “I didn’t order weapons! What a waste, and what a ruin of lines. What am I going to shoot at? Keft planetary flotsam?”
Zie kicked the side of the ship for good measure, which only succeeded in hurting zir toe. “Quirky Quells Custom Shipyard,” Vas spat into zir communicator. “And I want to speak to Quell, not a sales rep.”
The pocket comm pinged a moment later, and a yellow blob of semi-viscous goo appeared on the screen. A singular stalk rose from the center of the blob, one eyeball rolling in circles on the tip. “Vasssssss,” Quell greeted. “Problemssss?”
“Weapons?” Vas asked, and flashed the comm at the ship. “I didn’t ask for that.”
“Stannnndard. Jus donnn arm.”
“But they ruin the lines of the ship, Quell!”
The yellow goo rippled and then spat a… piece of itself, into the air. The goopy tear landed back on the mass and reabsorbed. Quell was the best ship designer in the Alliance, no question, and it was a credit to his business that he didn’t mind taking commissions from such a far border world as Keft. But Vas wanted the ship zie wanted, and zie wanted it done right.
“Wwwwwwant refund?” Quell blubbered.
Vas gave a much belabored sigh and shook zir head. “No. I want my ship. Scrap this thing. I don’t care where it goes or what you do with it. Don’t even bother stripping it down. I want a whole new shell and I don’t want to reuse anything from this trash. This time, we’re going to go over every inch in detail. This time, we’re going to do it right.”
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