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 Chapter 3

For information about the Captain and Officers of USS ARTEMIS
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The Midshipmen had changed into fresh uniforms before reporting to the Captain's Quarters for dinner.  Unfortunately, Angie's uniform was not staying fresh.  Her face was "glowing" and her tunic was already beginning to stick to her armpits, but Midshipmen don't present themselves to a new commanding officer out of proper uniform.  She stomped down the oppressively hot passageway at Lyra's side.

"I understand the need to acclimate the crew to a hot, humid planet if there's gonna be a lot of away team activity," Angie said, "but—"

"How do you know there won't be a lot of away teams?" Lyra interrupted.  Her tunic was not sticking to her armpits.  In fact, she was perfectly at home in the ship's overheated atmosphere.

"Because," Angie huffed, "while you were wasting ship's power in the shower, I took the time to review the mission schedule for the next month."  The Middies had been assigned a two-person stateroom on deck five.  It was slightly smaller than senior cadet quarters at the Academy, but entirely adequate and included its own sonic shower and computer station.

"And while you were in the shower," Lyra responded, "I skimmed the planetology reports for the Gian Expanse.  Twenty-seven M-class planets have been surveyed, so far, and all have climates similar to Scatara-IV—except for their polar regions, of course."

"That's statistically unlikely," Angie observed.

"Indeed, Kipper," Lyra smiled.  "I suppose it's one more—"  She paused for effect.  "Mystery... of the Gian Expanse!"

Angie rolled her eyes.  "Tree Frog," she sighed, then smiled.  "You really are a tree frog, you know, all green and happy in the jungle heat."

Lyra smiled back.  "I wish I could return the compliment, Kip, but all the smoked fish I've ever seen was crisp and at least a little dried out, which you, most decidedly, are not."

"Clever," Angie purred, then straightened her tunic as they'd reached their destination.  The "occupied" light on the door's control panel was lit, but not the "privacy" light.  "Ready?" Angie asked, and Lyra nodded.  "Here we go."  She pressed the visitor button.

"Come," a voice responded from within, and the door slid open.

The Middies entered the suite and snapped to attention.  Two women were waiting, a Vulcan and a Human.

"Midshipman Lyra D'varas," Lyra announced, "reporting for duty."

"Midshipman Angeronia Goodnight," Angie announced, as well, "reporting for duty."

"Captain T'Pax," the Vulcan said, then stepped forward and shook hands with both Middies.  "Welcome aboard ARTEMIS."  She indicated the Human.  "This is Lieutenant Commander Annika Hansen, our Chief Engineer."

The identities of the captain and the engineer were not news to the Middies.  Both senior officers were somewhat famous throughout the fleet.  Captain T'Pax was the great granddaughter of Admiral T'Pol, one of the original signers of the Federation Charter.  LCDR Annika "Seven" Hansen was a hero of VOYAGER's odyssey and was one of only the handful of Humans that had ever been rescued from the Borg Collective.
Captain T'Pax

Their Captain was dressed in the same abbreviated uniform the Middies had seen on most of the crew: boots, trousers, and a gray tank-top with her rank pips pinned to the right strap and her comm-badge above her left breast.  Her brown hair was short and straight, in the Vulcan style, and she was the very image of her famous ancestor.  T'Pax was famous in her own right, however, having distinguished herself on the Cardassian Front during the Dominion War.  Her last posting, before assuming command of ARTEMIS, was as Starfleet attaché to the Federation Ambassador to the Klingon High Council on Kronos.

"Seven"LCDR Hansen was wearing a modern, rather unusual version of the sort of anti-radiation suit that had been standard duty uniform for engineering personnel a generation before.  In essence, it was a skintight, sleeveless unitard of metallic silver with Support/Engineering gold piping on the inside seam of its plunging V-neck.  Her rank pips were on the right, and her comm-badge was in the standard position on the left, above her heart.  Her blonde hair was coiled and pinned in a tight bun, and despite what either of the Middies would have considered stifling attire, she appeared to be cool as the proverbial cucumber in the humid heat.

"Please, be comfortable," the Captain said.  "Until further notice, tunics need not be worn while on duty."

"I prefer this uniform variant," the Engineer explained, indicating her suit.  "With life-support at its current setting, my Borg implants aid the regulation of my metabolism with greater efficiently with this proportion of bare skin exposed."

Both Middies had been very carefully not staring at the metal implants on the Commander's left brow and cheek and under her right ear, or at the glove-like lattice on her left hand and fingers.  They nodded, then began removing their tunics.

"Dinner will be served in a few minutes," the Captain announced, then walked to a side table and poured an amber liquid into four stemmed glasses.  "I look forward to hearing about your experiences at the Academy, and later, I'll tell you about our planned mission into the Gian Expanse."

Angie and Lyra had pinned their black Middie pips and comm-badges to their undershirts.  They each took a glass from their captain and followed her to the built-in seats before the large window in the quarter's outer bulkhead.  They sat, sipped what turned out to be an excellent Regulan aperitif, and watched the stars, distorted by the ship's warp field, as they appeared to streak past the window.

"Midshipman D'varas," the Captain said, after a few minutes of smalltalk, "may I ask a cultural question?"
"Of course, Captain," Lyra responded.

"As a Vulcan, I am a lifelong student of Wh'Itri and all meditative disciplines.  Are you familiar with Kahl'vin?"

"Yes, Captain," Lyra nodded.  She noticed Angie's quizzical expression and smiled at her friend.  "An Orion meditative technique," she explained, then turned back to the Captain.  "I'm not a ranked practitioner, but I know the basic forms."

T'Pax nodded.  "I'd be very interested in a demonstration.  ARTEMIS won't cross the Federation frontier for two more days, and LT Basán won't begin your orientation and training until tomorrow morning.  Perhaps after we eat?" She gestured towards her quarter's replicator station.  "You may replicate whatever you require."

Lyra blinked in surprise.  "Uh, yes, ma'am.  I'll need someone to, uh, assist in the demonstration."

"I, myself, shall participate," T'Pax said.

"Yes, ma'am, but I'll also need someone else," Lyra said, "so you'll be able to observe everything involved."

T'Pax nodded.  "I understand."  She glanced at her Chief Engineer.  "I believe you will be unavailable."

"And uninterested," LCDR Hansen said, dryly.  "In any case, I will be supervising a level four diagnostic of the main deflector dish until the start of Day Watch," she stated.

"As scheduled in the Plan of the Day," T'Pax noted.  Her gaze shifted to Angie.

"Uh, I know nothing about Orion meditation," Angie said, shifting nervously in her seat.

"You don't need to know anything," Lyra whispered, and surreptitiously kicked her friend's foot.

"Ow!  I mean, yes, ma'am," Angie said, "I'd be glad to, uh, meditate."

"Thank you, Midshipman Goodnight," T'Pax said.  She finished her drink, then stood and walked towards the replicator station.  The Midshipmen scrambled to their feet.  "Please, remain seated," the Captain said.

"I'll set the table," the Chief Engineer announced.

"How very domestic of you," The Captain observed.

The Middies exchanged an amused glance.  Vulcan "humor" was a dry and exceedingly rare phenomenon.  They sat back down.

"What have you gotten me into, Tree Frog?" Angie whispered in her friend's ear.

"Nothing," Lyra answered, smiling sweetly.  "Nothing yet."
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 Chapter 3
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It was the beach of an isolated cove on the island with the massage pavilion, but it was some distance from all the resort's facilities.  Countless stars and a dozen small moons wheeled in the indigo heavens, and a shimmering curtain of blue-green light rippled across the northern half of the sky.  It was an artificial aurora borealis, radiant energy being dissipated by the satellite control grid that regulated Risa's weather.

Olena was naked and spreadeagled on the sand.  Soft, silky rope bound her wrists and ankles to four wooden stakes.  At the moment, her waist was just above the surf line.  Every seventh wave rolled far enough up the beach to splash her feet and wet her legs, thighs, and butt before soaking into the sand and draining back to the sea.  A strip of shimmering, pearl-white tape was plastered over her mouth, and she'd been in this helpless condition for nearly an hour.

Olena remembered the wet kiss of the first wave as it splashed against her heels... and later, against her calves... and later still, against the back of her thighs.  The tide was slowly, inexorably rising.  She tugged on her bonds, but knew herself to be helpless... completely helpless.

Just then, Gwen strolled from the jungle and onto the beach.  She was wearing a bikini and a long, low-slung sarong.  Both were in a garish floral pattern, predominately in shades of purple and green.  Her long, black hair was straight and free, and a garland of lavender, orchid-like flowers encircled her brow.  Two glowing glass globes with protruding straws were balanced in the palms of her hands.

She strolled to Olena and straddled the staked-out prisoner's naked form, her bare feet to either side of Olena's narrow waist.  "Still here, I see," she purred, smiling down at her lover's tape-gagged face.  "I had to hike half-way back to the main resort to find a bar."  She hefted the globes and took a delicate sip from the one in her right hand.  "Then, I got lost on the return trip and ended up on the wrong beach, and you weren't there!  For an instant, I was afraid I'd misread the tide table and you'd been drowned and swept out to sea."

Olena's eyes crinkled as she smiled above her gag.  She tugged on her wrist bonds.

"It's not out of the question," Gwen said, as she nodded towards the night sky.  "Look at all those moons."  Her smile turned somewhat feral.  "Perhaps you'd like additional time to count them all?"  She knelt in the sand.  Her splayed legs were to either side of Olena's torso, and her knees nudged the prisoner's armpits.  She leaned forward and set the drinks on the sand, one on either side of Olena's head.  She then reached for a corner of Olena's gag, peeled the tape from her lips, and plastered the pearlescent rectangle to the side of the left-hand globe.  "There, she purred, "now we can keep track of which is which."

Gwen held the straw of the left-hand globe to Olena's grinning mouth, and the prisoner sucked and swallowed.

Just then, a wave rolled in and Gwen grabbed both drinks and scrambled to her feet, just in time to prevent her sarong from getting wet.

"Untie me," Olena demanded, tugging on her wrist bonds, again.

"Not likely," Gwen pouted.  "You're a filthy sand spider, and have been mean to me all night.  Its only fair I leave you here and let you drown."

"Woe is me," Olena sighed, a smile dimpling her tan face.  "In case you haven't noticed, you've got my head and shoulders above the level of the last high tide.  She turned her head to the side and nodded with her chin at the line of old seaweed and other flotsam.

"Oh, you're no fun," Gwen sighed.

Olena watched as Gwen walked a few paces up the beach, set down the drinks, and began executing a stately and very casual striptease.  First went the bikini top—then the sarong—and finally, the bikini bottom.  The doctor paused between each article of clothing to smile over a bare shoulder at the watching prisoner.  She's so beautiful, Olena marveled.

Finally, her dark eyes flashing and her white teeth glinting in the light of the stars, moons, and aurora—clad only in the flower garland—Gwen returned to once again stand over her captive.

Olena gazed up at her lover's dimpled smile, perfect breasts, flat tummy, the luxuriant, black curls of her pubic thatch, and her strong thighs.  Olena the fierce warrior—L4 Colony all school zero-gee Capoeira champion—captain of the Starfleet Academy Krav Maga team—practitioner of Klingon Mok'bara at the blue stripe level—Olena shivered in her inescapable bonds, hopelessly in love with her captor.  "Untie me," she sighed.

Gwen knelt as she had before, settled a portion of her weight on Olena's tummy, leaned forward until their nipples touched, and kissed her prisoner's pouting lips.  "You were very cruel to me tonight."

Olena squirmed and forced a moan past Gwen's lips "Mrrrf!  It wasn't me," she objected.

"Okay," Gwen purred, "it was that trollop Yulani who did all the tickling and goosing."  She kissed Olena's lips, again.  "But you watched.  And after Ezri and Yulani left, you were very cruel to me with your wicked tongue."  She smiled, sweetly.  "It's only fair that I should return the favor."  They kissed again, and this time there was a great deal of lip-smacking and tongue-probing, and it was very mutual.

Finally, Gwen came up for air, smiled, and slid her body down Olena's helpless form until her smiling lips were hovering just above the prisoner's blond bush.  Her head dipped lower, still, and her warm, wet tongue slid against Olena's labia in a slow, languid lick.

"Oh, Martian!" Olena sighed, shivering in her bonds.

Gwen continued licking Olena's pussy, and the waves continued lapping against their nude bodies.

Overhead, the northern lights rippled with violet tendrils as a shower of meteors passed through its shimmering folds and streaked across the sky.  Such celestial fireworks were a regular occurrence on Risa, but the Humans on the beach were oblivious to the spectacle overhead.

The lovers were occupied by other natural wonders.
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 Chapter 3
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Angie was mortified, beyond embarrassment.  "Tree Frog!" she hissed through her teeth.

"Easy, Kipper," Lyra whispered back.  They were both naked, and Lyra was putting the finishing touches on the web of soft, white, replicated rope that was now binding her Human friend's pink body.

Angie was sitting on an exercise pad, on her rump.  Her legs were crossed in a semi-lotus and her arms folded behind her back.  Bands of rope pinned her arms to her sides and her wrists against her spine.  Additional bands lashed her thighs to her ankles.  All of it was neat, symmetrical, and tight, but surprisingly comfortable, quite unlike the punishing bonds she'd endured on Holodeck Two, at the hands of the computer-generated Andorian pirates who had captured her earlier in the day.  Twice in one day!  Her cheeks burned like she'd been hiking the Vulcan wastes for a week, and without sunscreen or a hat.

The Captain's Quarters were dark, lit only by the glow of a half-dozen Vulcan meditation lamps tastefully positioned around the room.  LCDR Hansen had already left, to begin the deflector diagnostic in Main Engineering.  Captain T'Pax, also naked and in a semi-lotus, was watching Lyra bind her fellow Middie from a second exercise pad a couple of meters away.  "Movement still seems possible," the Vulcan observed, her unwavering gaze on Angie's bound form.

"Yes, ma'am," Lyra conceded.  "First level Kahl'vin only requires helplessness and restriction to a single, voluntary pose.  The more advanced levels explore enhanced levels of restraint and the control of pain."

"Pain?" Angie gasped.

"The discomfort associated with long-term immobility in challenging positions," Lyra explained.  "The most advanced levels involve the total immobility of encasement, as well as sensory deprivation.  Kahl'vin Masters have been mummified in contorted poses and entombed in hollow statues for days.  Their students report being visited by their entombed Masters in their dreams.  And there are legends of Grand Masters whose spirits were able to walk the world freely while their living bodies remained helpless and encased in stone."

"It seems like a lot of trouble to go to so your spirit can 'walk the world freely'," Angie huffed.  "I take my spirit for walkies all the time, with my body along for the ride."

"But you can't do it at the moment," Lyra said, smiling sweetly, "can you?"

Angie sighed.  "Not at the moment," she conceded.

"And now," T'Pax said, "would you please bind me, as well?"

"Of course, Captain," Lyra responded, then gracefully stood, stepped behind her captain, and picked up the first of several coils of white rope waiting beside the mat.

"I find it interesting that the preferred material of an Orion discipline should be Andorian ice-spider silk," T'Pax observed.

"It's so soft and pliable," Lyra explained as she began binding her Vulcan "student".  "It holds a knot quite well, yet is easy to untie, and it has almost no stretch under load.  As soon as Andorian merchants began visiting Syndicate Worlds, it became a popular luxury trade item."  She continued pulling loops around her captain's exquisite body, cinching them tight, and tying knots in unreachable positions.  In only a few minutes, T'Pax was as helpless as Angie, and in exactly the same manner.

"I believe there are additional elements," T'Pax said, "used even in the most basic of Kahl'vin forms."

"Yes, Captain," Lyra nodded.  She stood, bowed to both of her helpless captives, then pattered to the replicator panel.  "Computer," she said, "two first level Kahl'vin blindfolds and gags."

"What?" Angie blurted.

"Concentrate on remaining calm, Midshipman," T'Pax ordered.  Her own eyes were closed, and her face a serene mask.  "Clear your mind and concentrate on... nothingness.  Your body is helpless, but your mind is free."

"Yes, Captain," Angie sighed, but she glared at her fellow Middie.  "I'll get you for this!" she mouthed, silently.

Lyra smiled, sweetly, as the replicator pad shimmered and the requested items appeared.
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 Chapter 3
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Lyra was reclined on her side on the sofa under the window, and was enjoying a tiny glass of Podena, a ruby-red liquor from Orion.  She hadn't expected to find it on the ARTEMIS replicator menu, but it was there, and it was delicious.  Consumed in the traditional manner, Podena was not sipped.  She periodically raised the glass and wet her tongue in the thick, sweet liquid, then savored its rich, complex flavor.

Across the room, Captain T'Pax and Kipper were still meditating.  They were only halfway through the hour of restraint the Captain had set for the demonstration.  Both meditators were gagged, with large, soft balls of crumpled ice-spider silk filling their mouths.  Panels of the same material hugged their lower faces, cupped their chins, and were held in place by webs of silk ribbons.  Silk blindfolds covered their eyes, their ribbon-ties cinched through the gag-harnesses for uniform tightness and comfort.

The Vulcan had entered a trance-state instantly, as soon as her bondage was complete.  Angie, on the other hand, had stared sullenly at her fellow Middie as her gag was applied, and up to the very second her angry brown eyes disappeared behind the shimmering, soft silk of her blindfold.

Lyra savored another lap of Podena, and smiled.

T'Pax was a living statue, her exquisite body perfectly still, her breathing so shallow as to be nearly imperceptible.  She's beautiful.  The Vulcan's tan skin was smooth and flawless—her form athletic, with feminine but well-defined muscles, full breasts, and a wasp-thin waist.  Beautiful.  Her Starfleet biography says she's old enough to be my mother's mother, and yet... she's beautiful!

Angie was also beautiful, but in a different way.  Her skin was a much paler shade of pink.  And while she was also fit, her figure was, well, girlish.  Her breasts were small but pleasing in shape, and while Lyra knew her Human friend was a gifted athlete, her lithe figure retained a thin layer of "baby-fat".  Much like my own, Lyra thought.

It was normal for Orion women to grow into their full, adult prime at a slower pace than Humans.  Lyra expected to remain "girlish" until her 30's.  Angie, however...  Lyra sighed, again.  Angie had a rare gift.  She would probably be "cute", as the Humans put it, for her entire life.  She watched as Angie shifted in place.  Kipper was trying to remain perfectly still, but she was having only limited success.

Lyra's smile turned feral.  All Orions fantasize about their slaving-holding past, just as Humans often dream about romanticized versions of their species' own violent history.  Vulcans, of course, fantasize about nothing.  Theirs was a life of scholarship and spiritual growth.

Lyra gazed at T'Pax.  What a slave she would make, she mused.  Female Vulcan slaves were the stuff of erotic legend on Orion.  Rare, exotic beauties, they were (supposedly) dangerous and difficult to train, but well worth the effort.  They could never be trusted, and required perpetual control and restraint.  But, when they were in heat—Pon'far the Vulcans called it—they were supposed to be quite a wild ride.

Lyra sampled her drink, again, then smiled at Angie's helpless form.  Enslaving a human, she thought.  Enslaving Kipper...  What a delicious, naughty idea.  It wasn't widely know among the other Federation races, but it was possible for Orion women to chemically enslave sentient females as well as males, Humans included.  It took patience, but if a she-slave was teased to orgasm, repeatedly, with the scent of her Mistress' musk-of-power perfuming the air...  It was possible.

Kipper as my slave...  Lyra finished her drink, lay back, and lightly, slowly, began caressing her labia.  Visions swam in her head of Angie Goodnight, naked, in close chains, and pleasuring her Orion Mistress—pleasuring Lyra D'varas, High Mistress of her extended clan—Supreme Suzerain of D'varas Fortress and its Syndicate Fleet squadron...

 It was a delicious fantasy.

The computer would chime when the hour was up.  Lyra was free to dream, and to gaze at her Vulcan and Human "slaves", and to caress her pussy.
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 Chapter 3
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Angie lay in her bed and stared up at the dark ceiling.  Tree Frog, the Despicable Orion Traitor (her best friend) was already asleep.

The computer was set to wake them an hour before Day Watch.  Then, they'd rise, dress, breakfast in the mess hall, and report to the Security office.  Their new uniforms were replicated, laid out, and ready for wear: boots, trousers, and tank-tops, all in camouflage tuned to the jungles of Scatara-IV, like the one their new department head had worn on Holodeck Two.  Federation tradition was to downplay the military aspect of the Starfleet mission, but ARTEMIS' incursion into the Gian expanse was an explicit show of force, as well as an actual attempt to eliminate the threat posed by the slaver-pirates.  The new Security uniforms were practical and appropriate.

Angie turned her face to Lyra's bed.  There was just enough light in the darkened space for her to focus on her slumbering roommate. The Orion always slept in the nude.  She'd done so even during Academy field training on Mars, and Angie remembered it well.

After long hours of trekking across the red, sub-zero desert, practicing tactical maneuvers, the cadets had made camp, paired off, and climbed into bubble-tents.  They then tucked themselves into sleeping bags of synthetic down, and shivered through eight hours of the long, Martian night.  And, to Angie's amazement, Tree Frog removed her insulated coverall, winter uniform, and long-johns, then climbed into her bag in the buff... or in the green, in Lyra's case.  Angie, on the other hand, had retained her long-johns and socks.  Even now, despite the tropical setting of the ship's Life Support system, Angie was more comfortable sleeping in panties and a T-shirt, and she had a sheet and light blanket pulled up to her chin.

Lyra was curled on her side with a single sheet half-covering her nude body.  Her face was hidden under a curtain of black hair, but her right shoulder, breast, thigh, and knee were exposed.

What a day, Angie thought.  Reporting to your first command was supposed to be stressful, but... WOW!  If her school chums from New Avalon could have seen her today!  Join Starfleet!  Serve your fellow citizens!  See the Stars!  Wind up naked and tied up TWICE in one day!

Well, Miss Angeronia Goodnight, she mused, if you can't adapt to alien cultures and handle the unexpected—what the hell are you doing in Starfleet?

Angie smiled and rolled onto her side.  She knew morning would come soon enough.

Probably too soon.
 Chapter 3

Chapter 2
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Chapter 4