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To Boldly Go

Laura Gabrielle Feasey over at I Smith Words has started a new flash fiction thingummy called “Literary Lion”, because Literary Lion looks after the prompts, you see. This one is for up to 400 words (wow, yeah, I know right, 400 whole words!) and this week the prompt is “Space”.

I’ve gone completely literal – the first thing I think of when I hear “Space” is Captain Kirk’s famous words at the beginning of Star Trek: “Space: the final frontier. These are the voyages of the starship Enterprise. Its five-year mission: to explore strange new worlds, to seek out new life and new civilisations, to boldly go where no man has gone before.

I know this is my third fiction this week, but although fairly long this one is all dialogue and so quite easy to wade through :-).

I got to thinking – I bet it wasn’t that polished when he spoke those words the first time. So let’s take a look, shall we, and see how it went?

Taken from Wikipedia, Copyright probably Desilu/Paramount

Taken from Wikipedia, Copyright probably Desilu/Paramount

 

“Space, the final frontier,” began Kirk. The bridge crew looked around expectantly. “These are the voyages of the star ship Enterprise,” he continued. “Its five year mission, to…”

“Five years? FIVE YEARS?” cut in a Russian voice. “I told my mum I’d be back for Sunday lunch!”

“Mr Checkov,” admonished Kirk. “Do you mind? I’m trying to give an inspirational speech here.”

“Sorry, Keptin.”

“To continue,” said Kirk, “…explore strange new worlds, to seek out new life and new civilisations…”

“And shoot them!” laughed the security guard by the turbolift.

Kirk looked at him. “You’ll be dead soon enough, red-shirt cannon fodder uncredited person, so I’ll let you have your fun this time.” The security guard turned a funny shade of green, which clashed rather abominably with his red jumper.

“As I was saying,” continued Kirk, “…to boldly go where…”

“You’re splitting your infinitive, Captain.”

“What’s that, Mr Spock? Splitting my infinitive, you say? I’ll damn well split my infinitive if I like, you pedantic fool. Are you the captain? No, I’m the captain. Besides, it will probably be the most famous split infinitive in the English language by the time I’m finished. If I may?”

“Of course, Captain,” said Spock, unfazed.

“…to boldly go…” Kirk paused, glaring around the bridge as if daring someone to object, “… where no man has gone bef…”

“’Person’, Captain. Or ‘one’. ‘Man’ is a bit sexist, don’t you think?”

“Oh, good God! Janice, shortly I will be involved in America’s first interracial TV kiss with the lovely Uhura.” He winked at the Lieutenant, who ducked her head and pretended she hadn’t heard. “One thing at a time. Baby steps, Yeoman, baby steps. Now, …no man has gone before!”

He looked triumphantly around the bridge, one arm held dramatically above his head. Everyone clapped.

“Now, Mr Sulu, ahead, warp factor… what’s a sensible warp factor do you think?”

“Um, two, Captain?” hedged Sulu.

“Very good, Mr Sulu. Fast enough that we mean business, not so fast that it looks like we’re rushing about like headless Ferengi. Warp factor two it is!”

And so the Enterprise went boldly towards the distant stars, the Captain’s speech but a distant, somewhat embarrassing memory.

 

  1. June 4, 2015 at 6:39 pm

    Great stuff, and nice to have someone taking a sci-fi direction at last! ‘The most famous split infinitive in the English language’, that made me laugh. This reminds me somewhat of Galaxy Quest, a sort of spoof on the genre!

    Like

    • June 4, 2015 at 7:26 pm

      I thought I’d go for the obvious for a change, and it was a good opportunity for a spoof :-). Just a bit of fun! I’m glad you enjoyed it. And Galaxy Quest is a great film!

      I’ll try to participate again, my main worry is that between Mondays Finish the Story and Friday Fictioneers I won’t have time to read all the other stories.
      Thanks for hosting!

      Liked by 1 person

      • June 4, 2015 at 9:44 pm

        I’m glad my prompt inspired some fun! I completely understand, so much writing to do and so little time! You by no means have to participate every week, hopefully you can dip in and out when you’ve got the time!

        Liked by 1 person

  2. June 4, 2015 at 6:52 pm

    I’m sure it was JUST like that. Exactly.

    Like

    • June 4, 2015 at 7:26 pm

      It’s almost like I was there or something.

      Like

  3. June 4, 2015 at 9:11 pm

    To Boldly Split Infinitives like no infinitive has been split before!

    Like

    • June 5, 2015 at 6:58 am

      🙂
      And he didn’t even hesitate. This Kirk fellow has no regard for the English language.

      Like

  4. Francesca Smith
    June 5, 2015 at 9:31 am

    Very funny! I am sure the version we hear took some time.

    Like

    • June 5, 2015 at 2:39 pm

      I’m sure he spent most of the “five year mission” perfecting it 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  5. June 5, 2015 at 1:43 pm

    There is nothing wrong with literal! Great interpretation!

    Like

    • June 5, 2015 at 2:43 pm

      Thanks! All the other stories are beautiful, quite deep and thought-provoking, but I wasn’t in the head space for writing something like that yesterday 🙂

      Like

  6. June 5, 2015 at 11:21 pm

    This is hilarious, it must have been just like this.
    Sounds like an interestibg challenge, too.

    Like

    • June 6, 2015 at 4:19 am

      Every great speech starts off a little rough but he got there in the end. I’m glad you enjoyed it!
      It’s nice to have 400 words to play with, makes a change to be able to write something a little longer.

      Liked by 1 person

  7. June 6, 2015 at 1:05 am

    Funny dialogue.

    Like

  8. June 6, 2015 at 5:41 am

    What fun! says she whose son has been photographed with America’s first Lady (of sci fi)
    only a month or two ago. Hilarious prose and most enjoyable draliman! 😀

    Like

  9. June 7, 2015 at 6:01 pm

    That was fantastic! Fun, clever and I’m sure exactly how it happened. Also, I think I’d be of the same mind as Checkov.

    Like

    • June 7, 2015 at 6:54 pm

      It must be a bit of a shock to be told it’s a five year mission only after you’ve left space dock 🙂
      I’m glad you enjoyed it 🙂

      Like

  10. June 8, 2015 at 4:03 pm

    Hahaha, this was a riot!

    Like

  11. June 8, 2015 at 10:35 pm

    Spock would be proud.

    Like

  12. June 10, 2015 at 12:13 pm

    That was really hilarious, Ali. As a Star Trek fan, I appreciate it all the more. The dialogue was great. 😀 — Suzanne

    Like

    • June 10, 2015 at 1:38 pm

      I’m glad you liked it! It was geared more towards Star Trek fans 🙂

      Like

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