SD 05/03/03 "MiT - Men in Trek" #1 Once again, we've taken a step into the unknown, and came up with something so familiar, yet so odd.

We were just about to transport Brundle back to the Freedom when he suddenly vanished. Not a trace of him or his contraption. Scanning the area, we discovered what looked like a wormhole. Somehow, the transporter signal had opened it, and it could be kept open by occasionaly locking onto it again. With M'Rander's approval, I began forming an away team for a rescue mission.

In a sense, this was a little like going back to the good 'ol days under Captain Treki. I hadn't gone on an away mission since she disappeared almost two years ago. I went ahead and got most of the bridge crew for this one. We'd need the engineers for the transporter boosters we're taking to ensure we're able to get back. Security Chief Tara we'd need if Brundle was in trouble or continued to be trouble. Medical we'd need if he was hurt, or just as likely if his sudden arrival caused an accident that would require their help. Dammers' background in covert operations would be handy if we faced the unexpected. Etc.

The probe launch was delayed as according to Tempres, someone had been using it and others as garbage cans! He got rid of the rubbish inside, then set it up ready to lauch. Once in, it reported a room temperature, 1G, breathable environment. So we got into the transporter deck and were beamed over ...

Into a dark closet.

At least we found out if was a closet after I got my flashlight out and looked around. The light switch was the first indicator this was a less technical society - not computer controled. But nothing shocking came until we opened the door. The first thing we noticed was a girl, human, in some kind of costume, cat ears and tail. She greeted us, and presumably thought we were in costume as well, but refered to us as "Trekkies," and thought Lynx was wearing a "M'Ress" costume.

We quickly noticed other costumes, many others, all girls, with the cat's ears and tail. But there were plenty of others such as karate uniforms with funny wigs. Cosmo called these people Otaku, fans of the old-style Terran Japanese animated shows, and suggested we were at one of their conventions. That element seemed to be the largest, but there were others. The people spoke English, so it seemed we were defenately in human territory. But the sign we saw, "Neko-con 2000," That was a suggestion the wormhole had taken us pretty far.

But what got to me, and the others, was how people seemed to recognize our uniforms, and K'Lynxyl's race. Over and over again came the terms "Trekie" and "Star Trek," "M'Ress" and "Caitian," and our uniforms were refered to as "Next Generation." We also saw a few in what looked like crude parodies of beings of our universe. The "Klingon" had a terrible make-up job, the "Vulcan" was smiling way too much, and both weighed far too much and while the "Klingon" got the body odor right, the others sure didn't. But the question is, how did these people know about us? I wanted to go into the "Dealers' Room" to see if I could get some books or disks that could provide clues, but without the convention badges most everyone had, we couldn't get in most places.

I could only conclude that we didn't travel back in time, but went to some paraell universe that somehow has us in it's fiction. A fascinating, although frightening concept.

I asked some if they saw someone of Brundle's description, thinking his "costume" would be impossible to miss, with or without that suit of his. Nobody knew anything. Then we overheard a couple people discussing something heard on the news. It seems someone in a "Green Goblin" costume was hit by a "Hostess Twinkie" truck in Albequerque New Mexico. Finding out we were in the East Coast, it would be a drive of over a day getting there. I used the tricorder to rig a malfunction in one of the locals' Automatic Teller Machines to get an amount of cash I thought would be sufficent to get us some clothes, a used van, and other things we might need along the way. I feel less than easy about it, though, stealing. Even as I left to hail a cab, I wondered if it would somehow be found out. But how else could we get the money. Maybe I can think of something after I buy some clothes.

Anyway, Brundle was supposedly taken to a local hospital where he was, so it should be a simple matter to go there and get him as long as we take certain precautions with Lynx, Tarra, and Cosmo. Other than that, peice of cake. It's not like we have to face a hostile local force armed with modern weaponry that matches our phasers.

NARRATIVE: Brundle wakes up in a darkened room, bound, and is interrogated by two humorless men in dark suits and sunglasses.

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