There were times when Jim Kirk suspected he might possibly need shore leave, and still other times when he was absolutely certain of it. The situation currently facing the entire crew of the Enterprise certainly indicated that he, and his crew, needed some well deserved shore leave, preferably by yesterday at the latest.
No one knew where the thing outside had come from; all they knew was that it was there and it was damn hard to shake. Outside, plainly visible through the main screen, was something that Kirk was absolutely positive was a fried egg, albeit a rather large, five mile wide fried egg. It didn’t seem to matter where they turned, the thing kept a steady distance between itself and the elegantly sturdy shape of the Enterprise.
Beyond the giant mass of the largest meal of sunny side up eggs in the entire universe, spun an equally large black hole. Spock had already posited that the thing outside may have come through the black hole via some alternate universe, to which no one presented a ready argument. Spock’s cold analysis was the only explanation they were currently running on.
Kirk watched the egg through the screen in front of them, knowing that if he didn’t do something soon, then who knew what else could filter through from the alternate universe beyond the mysterious surface of the black hole? Kirk didn’t think it would stop at giant fried eggs; in fact, he thought things could get worse very quickly if they didn’t find a solution very soon. Finally, he made another executive decision, which echoed the other executive decisions he’d given over the course of about five minutes.
“Evasive manoeuvres,” he said, voice tense and clipped around the edges.
Despite the Captain’s tense tone, his body was as relaxed in the captain’s chair as it ever was. To look at James T Kirk would indicate a man in control, who was not being menaced by a five mile wide fried egg in space or strange alternate universes.
“Trying, sir,” Sulu replied, slim body visibly attacking the controls in front of him.
The Enterprise lurched at Sulu’s brief touches, sending Spock tumbling out of his seat and onto the floor, while Uhura grabbed onto the comm unit with all her might. McCoy hung onto the back of Kirk’s seat, slender frame just about staying upright, as the Enterprise lurched to the left. Every single one of Sulu’s evasive manoeuvres seemed to be for nothing, however, as the fried egg shaped thing outside remained blocking their view.
“Scotty,” Kirk said, grimly, glancing briefly at the chief engineer slumped against the wall on the far side of the bridge. “Any risk of damaging anything if we open fire?”
“Nae to us, Cap’n,” Scotty replied, immediately. “Although to the thing outside, I dinnae ken.”
Kirk grunted in response, hazel eyes narrowing as he thought.
“Okay, Mr Sulu, open fire, all phaser banks,” he finally said, before being interrupted by Spock.
“This is highly illogical, Captain,” the Vulcan retorted, voice as bland and as expressionless as usual. “We don’t know what that thing out there wants.”
“It’s white, yellow and gelatinous, Mr Spock. It can’t want anything good. These things never do,” Kirk replied, darkly, as though he was the expert on all things fried egg.
Spock raised one eyebrow, but mercifully kept silent, as Kirk once more ordered Sulu to open fire. That time, Sulu responded, sending bright red streams of phaser fire deep into the heart of the wobbly fried egg hanging in mid-space before them. The egg glowed a bright, bright orange, before exploding outwards into something that closely resembled a large and fluffy omelette. The phasers died away, leaving the crew of the Enterprise studying the omelette with fascinated scrutiny.
“Fascinating,” Spock said, blandly, as McCoy addressed the captain.
“I’m a doctor, not a chef, Jim, but I don’t think that was supposed to happen,” he said, with one arch lift of his right eyebrow.
Kirk nodded, obviously too distracted by the sight through the screen to take note of what his friend had said. McCoy exchanged a glance with Spock over the top of Kirk’s head, but neither got the chance to speak. Kirk got there first.
“Mr Sulu, activate full phaser banks. Shoot it again,” he said, staring intently at the omelette outside.
The ferocity of his gaze alone could have blown holes in the omelette, McCoy thought, but wisely kept his council. Instead, he watched as Sulu activated the phasers again, sending red beams soaring through space and into the heart of the omelette. The crew on the bridge watched with bated breath, as the giant, cooked and fluffy egg based product exploded, plugging the gap formed in space by the black hole nearby. Spock typically didn’t react, even as the rest of the crew cheered Sulu’s prowess with the phasers. Sulu stood and bowed slightly, making Kirk smile where he still sat.
“Well done, Mr Sulu,” he said, with a nod at the other man.
“It appears that through exterminating that strange, gelatinous being outside, we have also solved the problem of the black hole, Captain,” Spock observed, dryly.
“Oh, really? Glad you pointed that out, there, Spock. I don’t think we would have noticed, otherwise,” McCoy said, with a grin at Kirk.
Spock emitted a long suffering sigh but didn’t deign to respond to the still grinning doctor.
“That’s called irritation, Spock,” Kirk supplied, turning his own grin from McCoy to the nearby Vulcan.
“Perhaps to a being who actually has emotions, Captain. I do not suffer from that kind of malady,” Spock replied, archly.
“Yeah? Well, I guess those of us who actually feel things are destined to be left with egg on our face, then,” Kirk murmured, making McCoy grin again.
“Cheap shot, Jim,” McCoy commented.
“Maybe so, but it was worth a try,” Kirk conceded. “Mr Sulu, let’s get out of here. Warp speed one.”
“Aye aye, sir,” Sulu replied, dutifully, before he engaged the warp drive fluidly.
The normal sounds of chatter permeated the bridge, as the Enterprise continued through space. They left the black hole behind, firmly plugged with the universe’s biggest omelette, therefore preventing more strange food-based products from menacing their portion of the universe ever again.