Monday, September 19, 2022

A Special Day

It's the International Talk Like A Pirate Day!  (Or in Traveller, it's Talk Like An Ethically Challenged Merchant Day.)

And that means it's time for get in touch with your inner pirate.  (And who doesn't want to get in touch with their inner pirate?)  Once you've gotten in touch with your inner pirate, the job isn't over.  Remember to consult the Affirmations for your Inner Pirate:

Stuart Smalley's Daily Affirmations for the Inner Pirate


"I'm going to rape and pillage today just for the heck of it because, gosh darn it, I deserve to have a good time."


"I am not a fraud, a thief yes, but not a fraud."


"I deserve all the loot and booty I can carry without feeling ashamed or being grandiose."


"I will express my feelings today. I will not hide them behind my eyepatch. My eyepatch is not a mask for my feelings, but rather a small swatch of leather that covers a hideous scar."


"When I overtake that merchants vessel, I will not be playing those parent tapes in my head: "You wield a cutlass like a girl" . . . "Why can't you be more like Blackbeard's son?" . . . "Philosophy? What kind of major is that? It's useless!"


"Just because I indulge in wine and wenches does not mean I'm an alcoholic sex-addict like my father."


"If I must violently put down a mutiny today, it is not because I am a bad person or that I am not worthy of love; it is because my crew are a bunch of yellow-bellied, lily-livered sons-of-whores--and I am mean enough, ruthless enough, and dog gone it, people fear me."

transcribed by James R. Torrence.



Saturday, May 14, 2022

Repeat, Rinse

I once described on this blog how a Carthaginian Peace would look like with Russian Republic.

Wednesday, November 10, 2021


Friends In High Places shows The Official Traveller Universe from the Rosenkranz and Guildenstern point of view.

Friends In High Places


Saturday, October 09, 2021

Personal History

I once wrote Princess Diana into a piece of Traveller fan fiction.

Tuesday, September 21, 2021


In a sixth grade classroom in the village of Pammunjong of the United Republic of Korea a teacher spoke.

"There were once people who were once concerned about Global Warming.  But the industrial and other Carbon Dioxide emissions weren't enough to stop the coming of the next Ice Age."

Although the current lesson covered the new Ice Age, the previous day’s lesson covered the political unification of the Korean peninsula.  A videotape of Kim Jong Un being hanged for his numerous crimes was shown.  Tomorrow’s lesson would cover the hunt for Democrat and former Governor of Minnesota Tim Walz by the Federation Security Service.  American Democrats were treated as enemies of Humanity.  The prohibition of public employee unions by the Federation was a sore point for the teacher.  The abuses of the teacher’s unions was still a sore point in the former United States.  The new world map in the classroom showed the nations of Canada, Russia, and Finland, completely covered in ice.  The new map showed new lands and a chain of lakes where the Baltic Sea was.  The new map also showed the construction of the new Kennedy Launch Center as well as the new American capitol city of Columbia in what was part of the Oklahoma panhandle.  The new map also showed radioactive zones around the former cities of Mecca and Medina as well as in the former nation of Pakistan.

The teacher spoke again.

“Once we’re finished with today’s lesson we’ll retire to the schools firing range.”


Sunday, July 04, 2021

Incarnations, Part Two

 As the three walked into the house Alex spoke.

“Something happened on Earth and you had to cut the visit short?”

“Yes.”     Evelyn replied.

“What happened?”  Asked Alex.

“I committed a sin.”  Said Evelyn.

“Sin is a mystical concept and is therefore invalid.”

Evelyn thought for a moment.  He then replied.

“I didn’t live up to the rational ethical standard.”

“What did you do wrong?”  Asked Alex.

Evelyn answered.

“If there was one thing I should’ve recalled from the memories I received from you, it’s that I should never give an evil man a break.”

“You did?”  Asked Alex.

“Yes, I did.”  Said Evelyn.  “And because I did an innocent girl was murdered right before my eyes.”

Both Alex and Diana stopped in the hall.

Alex spoke.

“Should we sit down?”

“Yes.”  Said Evelyn.

Alex led Evelyn and Diana into a sitting room.  The large picture window of the room overlooked a small lake on the Charon family estate.

When all three were seated Alex spoke.

“Now, what happened?”

Evelyn paused before answering.

“I went down to Minneapolis, just to see what the place was like now.”

“Is the Uptown Theater still there?”  Alex asked.

“Yes,” said Evelyn, “and they’re still running The Rocky Horror Picture Show.”

“Really?”  Said Alex.

“Yes, only once a year now, in the holographic format.”

Diana asked a question.

“What’s The Rocky Horror Picture Show?”

Alex answered.

“It’s a deconstruction of Mary Shelley’s novel Frankenstein as written by a follower of Herbert Marcuse.”

“Now I’m more confused.”  Said Diana.

“Which was the entire point of the film.”  Said Evelyn.
Alex nodded, Evelyn continued.

“But that wasn’t the fundamental problem.”  He said.  “The Chairman of the Grande-Sinjoro Corporation made several requests for a meeting with me in person in at their headquarters in the city of Chicago.  I gave a negative reply to the first message and ignored the subsequent notes.”

“He didn’t understand your response?”  Said Alex.

“No.”  Evelyn replied.  “He didn’t.  ‘No,’ is such a simple concept.  And he wasn’t the only one.  The concierge at the New Millennium Hotel couldn’t believe that I wanted nothing to do with that piece of garbage and offered to set up the meeting anyway.  So I changed hotels.”
Alex and Diana remained silent.

“I come back to the second hotel after a short tour of Nordeast Minneapolis, and there’s the piece of garbage, appearing in the center of the suite as if he was the senior senator from New York, he was acting as if he owned the place.”  Said Evelyn.  “He had a male flunky with him and a gift.”

“A gift?”  Said Alex.

“He likely thought of her as such.”  Evelyn replied.  “A female sex slave, with long blonde hair and blue eyes, she appeared to be about ten years in age, and was completely naked except the white slave bands.”

“White bands means she was unused.”  Said Diana.

“What a nice euphemism.”  Said Alex with a slight note of sarcasm.  “So what did he want?”

“He wanted to market their product on Freya and in the Ursa Major Confederation.”  Said Evelyn.  “He wanted to use our family’s influence to lift the capital ban on slavery.  And he brought along the girl to the meeting as a bribe.”

“You said no, of course.”

“I wasn’t polite about it.”  Said Evelyn.  “I used some old school barracks language in front of the girl.”

Evelyn wanted to stop.  He didn’t want to remember.

He sat silently until Diana spoke.”


“I said no.”

“That wasn’t all, was it?”  Said Alex.

Evelyn hadn’t simply said no.  He thought that he was being clever in his response.  It didn’t work.

“No, that wasn’t all.”  Evelyn replied.  “I told him, ‘I won’t lift a finger to help you politically.  But I will do you one favor.  I’ll take this little girl back to Freya, where she’ll be adopted by a real family and grow up as a real person, and then when it’s time for you to join the choir infernal you’ll have one less sin to atone for.’”

Evelyn closed his eyes and silently wrapped himself around Diana.  He didn’t want to let her go.  Ever.

Alex spoke.

“He killed her.”

Evelyn opened his eyes and stared as if he were seeing into a void.

“Yes, he killed her.  Right there.  It was as if he was simply pressing the off switch for her.”

The monomolecular threads swiftly cut through the neck, wrists, and ankles.  Every part of the girl simply dropped to the floor.  Blood sprayed everywhere.

“I didn’t say anything.”  Said Evelyn.  “I simply drew my weapon and shot them through the heads.  As if they were simply animals.”

Evelyn paused, and then spoke again.

“I knelt and looked at her face.  I could see the light fading from her eyes.”

“I seen death.”  Said Alex.

“I know.”  Evelyn replied.  “I remember every one.  You never saw this one, and you don’t want to see this one.”

In Chicago as far as anyone standing outside could perceive it was simply an ordinary block shaped office building in the center of the newly reconstructed city.  It appeared as if the architect was barely competent to design such a structure.  In fact the designer had gone out of his way to make the structure, clad in black tinted glass, indistinctive when compared to other buildings in the city so it wouldn’t attract unwanted attention.

The ground limousine entered the restricted section of the underground garage.  An actual living and breathing security officer in a normal business suit stood and waited as the white haired passenger completed a retina scan.  Only then was the man allowed to enter the restricted section of the building.

The man rode the private elevator to the top floor of the building.  There he was met by another security officer.

The white haired man introduced himself.

“Mister Wolfe to see The Committee.”

The security officer looked through an actual printed book of holographic color photographs to identify Wolfe.

“You may enter, sir.”  Said the officer.

Wolfe said nothing more to the officer as he entered the restricted suite.

Past the entrance of the suite was a corridor.  On the far side of the corridor was another familiar set of doors.  Standing before the doors was a tall brown haired woman in an expensively tailored all white business suit.  She was one of the rare people in this age to still wear eyeglasses.

She spoke to Wolfe.

“The Committee requires that you sit in the chair under the spotlight.”

Wolfe took a step forward.  The woman blocked him with the right hand.
She spoke again.

“The Committee requires that you acknowledge their instructions.”

The elder Wolfe resented being treated as if he were still a mere schoolboy.

He replied.

“I will sit in the chair as instructed.”

The woman replied.

“Thank you Mister Wolfe, you may enter now.”

The woman opened the door.  Wolfe walked in.

The walls of the chamber were covered with black curtains.  Before the head of the room and the right and left sides were the elevated tables behind which The Committee would sit in judgement of the elder Wolfe.

Before the bench was a single and simple chair under a spotlight.

The elder Wolfe sat down.

It was then the men and woman who made up The Committee filed into the chamber.  Each member of The Committee was as old or older than the elder Wolfe.  Each member wore a black robe over a black shirt and a black skullcap.

When all the members were seated the chairwoman spoke to Wolfe.

“You will stand up.”

Wolfe stood up.

The chairwoman asked a question.

“Do you understand why you have been summoned?”

“Yes, Madam Chairman.”  Wolfe replied.

“Do you know the truth?”

“Yes.”  Said Wolfe.  “‘There is no god but God and the Elder Gabriel is His voice.’”

“Please be seated.”  Said the chairwoman.

The elder Wolfe sat down.

The chairwoman spoke.

“Brian Francis Wolfe, do you understand why you have been summoned before the committee?”

“No.”  He replied.

The chairwoman shook her head and then responded.

“Your son, Edward, was arrested, tried, and executed for the crime of enslavement in the Ursa Major Confederation.”

“My son was murdered by a false state to enforce a false law.”

The chairwoman spoke again.

“By placing himself outside the boundary of the true state your son placed himself outside the protection of the true law.”

“They had no right to murder my son!”

The chairwoman shook her head and spoke again.

“You are fully aware of the fact that there is no right and no wrong, there is only power over others.  You should have passed this awareness on to your son.”

“I know now.”  Said Wolfe.

Wolfe sat silently.

Saturday, April 10, 2021

Pest Control, Part Four

September 11, 2245
New Boston, Kennedy, Alpha Centauri B

Prime Minister John Morrison stared out the window in his office at the ruins of the downtown basilica.  Even though the Mother Church owned the property and could afford to rebuild, the church was left in ruins to remind everyone what the Freyans did when they came to this world.

“Your guest is here, sir.”  The secretary said over the intercom.

Prime Minister Morrison walked to his desk and down on button on the intercom.

“Send him in.”  He said.

“Yes, sir.”  The secretary replied.

Prime Minister Morrison walked around his desk and stood before one of couches in his office.

Archbishop Lester Banion walked into the Prime Minister’s office and stood before the Prime Minister.  The two men sat on their couches.

“You know why I’m here?”  Said Archbishop Banion.

“To negotiate a peace deal.”  Replied Prime Minister Morrison.  “Only, it won’t happen.”

“Why not?”  Asked Archbishop Banion.

Prime Minister Morrison answered.

“You look upon the period the Mother Church was backed by the force of the State as a golden age.  Most of the inhabitants of this world looked at that time as a nightmare.  We want no more nightmares.  Paul Clark was hanged for numerous capital crimes.  It wasn’t just the Freyans who became angry when he was canonized, many people were.”

“How dare you deride Saint Paul Clark!”  Archbishop Banion stood up and shouted.

“The only reason The Vatican still exists is because it’s located on the Earth.  Even The Federation is tired of your nonsense.”  Prime Minister Morrison said.

Prime Minister Morrison continued.

“Those who’ve believed absurdities have committed atrocities.  You believe you’re one of the good guys, so did Oskar Dirlewanger.”

“Who?”  Archbishop Banion asked.

“Oskar Dirlewanger was one of the perpetrators of The Holocaust.”  Prime Minister Morrison replied.

“Who cares about a bunch of Kikes?”  Archbishop Banion asked.

“A lot of people do.”  Prime Minister Morrison answered.

Prime Minister Morrison said another thing to Archbishop Banion.

“Perhaps it’s time for you to leave.”

With that word the door to the Prime Minister’s office opened and another man stepped in.  The man held up a playing card, the face was the King of Spades suite, on the back was a white cross of St. Andrew over a black field.  The man spoke.

“Director Stern sends her regards.”

“You won’t get me to talk!”  Archbishop Banion shouted.

The man attached a piece of hull tape over Archbishop’s Banion’s mouth and responded.

“You won’t need to.”

As Archbishop Banion was being taped up by other men, Prime Minister Morrison spoke.

“Part of the function of a politician is to make deals.”  Prime Minister Morrison said to Archbishop Banion.  “I was made Prime Minister to clean up the mess you’ve made.  I don’t expect to be reelected for doing this.”

Archbishop Banion struggled as he was carried out of the Prime Minister’s office.

Prime Minister Morrison walked over to the window.  An aide stepped into the Prime Minister’s office and walked over to Prime Minister Morrison.  Prime Minister Morrison pointed to the ruins of the basilica and spoke.

“Let’s do some eminent domain and seize the property.”  Prime Minister Morrison said to the aide.  “Demolish the ruins and let the Mother Church know who’s really in charge on this planet.”

At numerous barracks around the city of New Boston members of KDF put on their body armor and picked up their 9mm Advanced Combat Rifles.  Many members of the People’s Front for Liberation of Kennedy would come down with fatal cases of Sudden Lead Poisoning on this day.

New York City, Manhattan Borough

Several police officers and firemen, including Detectives Greeley and Logan, were gathered at the site of Ground Zero to hear the mayor, retired police officer Kathleen Connor, speak.

“Nearly three thousand people were murdered as an act of hatred against Humanity.  Many of our brothers and sisters died on that fateful day.  A proper act of retribution would be erasing The Kaaba from the face of the Earth.  But we had Bush 43 as the President and we got the War On Terror along with the goat rodeo known as the Transportation Security Agency instead.  The false prophet Mohammad combined the worst features of Robert Lee Herald, Jeffery Epstein, with Charles Manson and turned them up beyond eleven.”

Detectives Greeley and Logan saw a librarian at New York City Public Library.  Detectives Greeley and Logan sat down at a table with the librarian.

“Have you ever read Star Of The North by Evelyn Stone?”  Asked the librarian.

“No, I haven’t.”  Replied Detective Logan.

“It reads like an autobiography, except that the names of the central character and girlfriend in Colorado were apparently changed.”  Said the librarian.

“Stone may have been a veteran of a war between the United States and the Soviet Union?”  Asked Detective Greeley.

“What’s the Soviet Union?”  Asked Detective Logan.

“The Union of Soviet Socialist Republics.”  Answered the librarian.  “It was a large state that consisted of Russia, The Ukraine, Belorussia, the Baltic States, and some Muslim territories.”  Answered the librarian.  “It was a Communist state.”

“Didn’t they know that Communism had a one hundred percent failure rate?”  Asked Detective Logan.

“No,” replied the librarian, “ a Soviet leader once to the Americans, ‘we will bury you,’ the Soviet Union was buried instead.”

The librarian continued.

“The New York Times, before it was shut down by the reformers, tried to influence a presidential election.  They tried this by reading Stone’s works.”

The librarian continued again.

“Stone was an interesting guy, he once got into a dispute with Robert Lee Herald.”

“Herald was the founder of the Center For Eternal Truth.”  Said Detective Logan.

The librarian continued again.

“Herald sent people out to murder Stone.  One of Stone’s friends was caught in the crossfire and killed.  Stone responded by riding on a motorcycle out to California, when it still a single state of the American union, and killing Herald.  Actions always have consequences.  There are now more than two hundred million people like Stone, and they’re still acting on their beliefs.

Detectives Greeley and Logan just stared at the librarian.

Omaha, capital of The Federation

In her temporary office in the basement of the Freyan embassy Judith Stern, the Director of the Central Security Agency of Ursa Major Confederation, looked at several photographs in a meeting with her subordinate, Ed Foster.

“It looks like Douglas Green is on board the British Spaceways ship The City Of Manchester.”  Director Stern said.  “Even if she wasn’t in hyperspace we still couldn’t board her.”

All Ed Foster could do was nod.

Hyperspace, British Spaceways Ship The City Of Manchester

Douglas Green sat in his cabin and thought.

A Freyan Pest Control team won’t get me here.