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Old 08-11-2010, 03:22 PM
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Arrow Ninth Novel Fiver: Dark Mirror

You could consider this to be my tenth novel fiver, to match the Tenth Anniversary theme, if you considered my mockery of New Frontier to be a proper novel fiver. I don't, but you could.

Anyway, this is another novel that happens to be especially long. (Some of you may be scared by this trend, but there's no need to worry: our copy of Metamorphosis went missing a long time ago.) It's also especially good. Again, then, reading the book before the fiver is strongly recommended.

Next up, incidentally, is likely to be a DS9 novel. (At least, two of the three novels I have remaining on the back burner are DS9s, although all three of those are only slightly started.) I might even do a "five-second" version or two first. Who knows?

Dark Mirror by Diane Duane

The ship gets a new Wii, just in time for the electricity to be shut off. Does it work anyway? Oui, oui.

Data: Nice butterfly. Here, have a dolphin.
Hwii: Hi. My name is Romanadvoratrelundar, but you can call me "Whee".

Hwii: I've been travelling with the Lalairu to investigate the fundamental structures of spacetime. It's been fun, even though the Lalairu have such an excellent, instinctual grasp of the subject that they treat me like a baby.
Picard: Ah, yes, the Lalairu are easily the best navigators in the galaxy. You'd think I'd be a little more concerned about them freaking out and fleeing the area, but meh.
Hwii: I think they're nervous because they sense a lot more hyperstrings in this area than there should be.
Picard: Perhaps a hyperorchestra is gathering for a hypersymphony.
Hwii: No, not that kind of string. Now I'm going to have nightmares about a "hyperperformance" of the "1812 Overture".

Universe: Ah-choo!

Hwii: These hyperstrings tell me that we were sneezed out of our universe into a different one that looks exactly the same.
Picard: I find this very difficult to belie—
Hwii: Don't make me sing opera again.
Picard: Fine, fine, we're in a different universe.

Worf: Captain, this intruder is charged with accessing our computer, attempted bribery, insulting me, and being an Evil Twin of one of our crewmembers.
Crusher: And insulting me.
La Forge: And being poorly dressed.
Troi: And being terrified of me, of all people! Who would be scared of me?
Picard: Someone who's seen you drive?

USS Enterprise: *sneak sneak*
ISS Enterprise: *prowl prowl*
USS Enterprise: Eep! *sneak sneak sneak*

Picard: Okay, I'm convinced. This is a mirror universe.
Riker: Sir? That other ship didn't look exactly like ours. This might be merely an alternate universe.
Picard: No, that ship proves this is a mirror universe. There's no other excuse for flying around upside-down in outer space.

Data: We are evidently in a sequel to the Original Series episode where Kirk tricked his robotic duplicate into growing facial hair, buying Spock enough time to rescue him from the Tholians. Or something. Honestly, I think I slept through that one.
O'Brien: Ah, those were the days. When transporters were real transporters, ion storms were real ion storms, and Styrofoam props were real Styrofoam props.

Picard: I have called you all here because we need volunteers to infiltrate the other ship. So everyone who's not Geordi or Deanna, take one step backward.
La Forge: But I . . . aww.

Crusher: So, just how debased and dystopian is this mirror Enterprise?
Data: Extremely. Based on leaked footage, that ship is in many ways the opposite of our own. For instance, everyone carries weapons.
Worf: Doesn't sound so bad to me.
Data: All of the crewmembers attend to duties with unceasing diligence due to fear of punishment.
Picard: Doesn't sound so bad to me.
Data: Furthermore, Councillor Troi's counterpart is perhaps the most powerful force on that ship.
Troi: Is that supposed to mean something?
Data: Also, she's dressed like a total slut.
Male Readers: Doesn't sound so bad to us!

La Forge: I love it when a plan comes together.
Picard: How are you feeling, old pal? Competent? Alert? Capable of eluding pursuit indefinitely?
La Forge: Are you up to something, Captain?
Picard: Just trying to get a hot tip. There's a pool on who gets thrown into the Agony Booth. Riker's giving three-to-one odds on you.

Troi: We've been on the enemy ship three minutes and I'm already getting stressed out. Please say you've pulled the necessary information out of the computer.
La Forge: Sorry, I can only get some historical exposition. Go relax in the subspace spa if you want — I'll join you in a minute.
Troi: But neither of us brought our swimsuits.
La Forge: So? We'd be wearing more if we changed into them.

Picard: According to this historical exposition, the United Empire of Planets grew out of Earth's intense desire to survive.
Riker: And according to Geordi, you have to go over there yourself so we can get the info we actually need. I don't like it.
Picard: Concerned for my safety, Number One?
Riker: Of course. I don't know what odds to set on you yet.

Mirror Picard: You're a total slut and one of your underlings has gone missing.
Troi: Oh, you must mean the guy we knocked out when we beamed onto — I mean, uh, think fast!
Mirror Picard: What — Zzzzzz . . .
La Forge: Sucker.

Mirror Barclay: I'm your chief bodyguard and Mirror Riker's trying to buy me off.
Picard: Heh. Even here, Will is eager for advancement.

Mirror Troi: Brain poke!
Picard: Ack!
Mirror Troi: Muahaha. Also, those fools in the other ship have no clue what's going on.
Picard: I take umbrage at that. I also take my leave to wander around on my own.
Mirror Barclay: Sir, someone could attack you!
Picard: Yes, but I'm curious to see who it might be.

Mirror Wesley: You killed my father. Prepare to die!
Picard: No, you prepare to die.
Mirror Wesley: Hahaha! Me, the most popular character on this ship, die? I think not!
Picard: This has got to be the sickest universe ever.

Hwii: Being cooped up in this ship is getting me down. I need to go outside and swim around for a while.
Riker: I'm afraid I can't authorize that without—
Hwii: It's either that or talk about opera with you.
Riker: Out you go.

Captain's Log: Mirror Geordi is showing me around this ship. Very powerful. We'll probably have to self-destruct our ship if we are forced to fight.
Mirror La Forge: It's a good thing we're taking the other Enterprise back to the other universe to spy on it, because if it were left here — say, by being destroyed — this universe would eventually be wrecked by the addition of so much mass.
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“There must have been a point in early human history when it was actually advantageous to, when confronted with a difficult task, drop it altogether and go do something more fun, because I do that way too often for it to be anything but instinct.” -- Isto Combs
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