First Previous Next Last
Episode 1: Part 20

First Previous Next Last

Cactus Flats is a real shooting range, actually. I've been there a few times!

Comments from the tagboard:
07/05/20 05:54 AM Oldarmourer: When there is no incentive to produce, no production is done.

Panel 1:
Location Text: Later that day...
    Cactus Flats Shooting Range
    Penrose, Colorado
    Earth Zack Del Rio: I think that target has had enough, Dale.

Panel 2:
Dale Zurkett: I'm not driving a blasted streetcar, Zack.
   They can drag me onto one... but I won't drive it!
    A streetcar killed my dog!
Zack: Dude, you've got to let that go. If Barkface's brain was related to star's luminosity, he was a brown dwarf.
    I mean, he ran in front of a streetcar. Those things barely hit 15 miles an hour.
Dale: Hey! He was named for a great Wogglenather.

Panel 3:
Zack: Okay, sorry. But anyway... you're overthinking this whole thing.
    Just pick some other job. Find a roommate.
    They'll get off your back.
    Hey, you could try to get back with T'Zel! You never did want to talk about why you two broke up.
Dale: That's a no-go. She's posted to the Farragut.
Zack: Dang. Ok. But you've still got to tell me what happened. No excuse this time, or I'll just have to assume it was your loser lifestyle.
Dale: Ha ha. But it's not complicated. Her career took off. She moved up from medic to ship's doctor. Meanwhile, I'm a civilian with no prospects.
    They kicked me out of the one job I was good at.

Panel 4
Zack: At least they still let you shoot.
    Anyway, look at me. I wanted to write holodeck video games.
    Instead I'm stuck coding replicator recipes.
Dale: That's not all you're doing.

Panel 5
Zack: You haven't told anybody about that, right? Those Federation agents didn't ask about me, did they?
Dale: That you're intentionally writing software glitches to give yourself extra replicator rations? Hell, no.

Panel 6
Zack: Actually, there's more now. Get this...
    So, the glitch still "accidentally" turns each replicator ration into three.
    But now I figured out how to convert THOSE rations into transporter credits, or service credits, or medical credits, or--
Dale: Wait, you did? So... can anybody do that, or--
Zack: Well, no... not just anybody. I trade the glitched code and the coverter program to, uh, "trusted buyers."
    They give me every third credit in exchange. It's win-win!

Panel 7
Dale: Not for the Fed. Isn't there an energy crisis?
Zack: That's their own damn fault. Planet full of fusion reactors running at 10% because they can't get enough dilithium.
    Because they killed the market for mining it. Who wants to mine rocks for free?
Dale: Save the politics, Zack. I still need a job.
Zack: Okay fine... stop looking for the perfect job and just an easy job. It's about "bettering humanity," right?
    So tell them you're an author. Write some terrible poetry. You'll just have to produce a lot of it to look legit.

Panel 8
Dale: Writing a lot terrible poetry, huh? I guess I-- wait. That gives me an even better idea.
    But I need a favor. Can you access Starfleet's classified database?
Zack Uh... do you want to just view it, or do you want to edit it?
Dale: No no... just browsing.
Zack Oh, then piece of cake.

Federation Star Defense, copyright © 2020 by Travers & Rioux Jordan

Star Trek and related characters are the property of ViacomCBS. This comic is in no way authorized. All images are the creation of the author except where otherwise credited. LEGO® is a trademark of the LEGO Group of companies which does not sponsor, authorize or endorse this site.