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Five-Minute "First Flight"

by Marc Richard

Archer: Score one for us -- I think we've just discovered the first dark matter nebula known to human or Vulcan science.
T'Pol: Your smugness may be premature. The nebula might be composed of an entirely different substance.
Archer: Then we'll have to find a way to confirm that it's made of the right stuff. Trip, can you load a few warheads with something that will excite the dark matter atoms?
Tucker: No problem. About thirty kilos of decon gel should do the job nicely.

Admiral Forrest: (on viewscreen) Jon, there's something you need to know about A. G. He went on a climbing expedition to Mount McKinley and....
Archer: So the old son-of-a-gun's off on another wilderness holiday, eh? I think he does it just so he can send me those "wish you were here" postcards he always....
Forrest: I'm afraid it's bad news, Jon.
Archer: Oh. I'm sorry, sir -- I didn't realize the gravity of the situation.
Forrest: Unfortunately, neither did A. G.

T'Pol: All shuttlepod systems are ready for launch, sir.
Archer: I'd rather go into the nebula alone.
T'Pol: Starfleet regulations prohibit you from doing so, Captain. In any case, the success of this scientific mission may depend on my presence.
Archer: How so?
T'Pol: I might be able to devise alternatives if the dark matter does not find Commander Tucker's spatial charges sufficiently exciting.

T'Pol: We will reach the nebula in two hours. Shall I meditate while you brood?
Archer: Suits me fine.
T'Pol: It might be more constructive for you to tell me about the former colleague of yours who has just died.
Archer: There's not much to tell. A. G. Robinson and I were both NX test pilots... and now he's an ex-test pilot.
T'Pol: Respectfully, sir, you owe me more detail than that. After all, I once told you all about one of my ancestors.
Archer: Must you keep bringing that up every time you want to hear a story?

Commodore Forrest: At ease, Commander.
Commander Archer: I am at ease, sir.
Forrest: Try harder -- you make the guards at Buckingham Palace look like slouches.
Archer: Just trying to make a good impression, sir.
Forrest: Well, you don't need to try anymore. I'm assigning the first warp two flight to Commander Robinson.
Archer: In spite of all the hours I've logged in the flight simulator, sir?
Forrest: I can't overlook the sessions you've missed with your voice coach, Jon. If you'd stuck with them, your Chuck Yeager accent would be as good as A. G.'s by now.

Archer: Bring me another drink, Ruby.
Ruby: Cheer up, Jon. You'll get the next flight.
Archer: It doesn't count for anything to go second. Just look at Buzz Aldrin -- nobody remembers what he said when he stepped on the Moon.
Ruby: Buzz who?
Archer: Sigh.

A. G.: One day, Starfleet is going to need some great captains. You didn't get the first flight because you focused too hard on being a great pilot.
Archer: What's wrong with being a great pilot?
A. G.: You may not believe this, but being a starship helmsman isn't always as glamourous as it's cracked up to be.

Archer: Okay, A. G., let me strap you in and you'll be ready for launch.
A. G.: Hey, Archer, you got any Beemans?
Archer: Yeah, I think I got me a stick.
A. G.: Well loan me some, will ya -- I'll pay you back later.
Archer: Fair 'nuff.
Vulcan Advisor: I would also like to try some of this "chewing gum."
Archer: You're not fooling anyone. Now close that machinery panel and keep your hands off our prototype!

Archer: Flight control to NX Alpha. You have clearance to break the warp two barrier.
A. G.: (over the comm) Okay, I'm puttin' the spurs to her. YeeeeeeHAH! Wish you were here!
Archer: If he sends me a postcard, I'll kill him.

A. G.: Whoa! The durn thing's startin' to buck like a bronco!
Archer: You'd better go sublight until we figure out what the problem is.
A. G.: Nah, I'm just gonna put the pedal to the metal. You don't feel the bumps in the road if ya drive fast enough.
Forrest: Commander Robinson, drop out of warp and out of macho mode right now!
Technician: It's too late! Long-range sensors show there's nothing left of the prototype but a cloud of debris!
Vulcan: Perhaps we should call it the Robinson Nebula.
Archer: When I told you guys to get a sense of humour, I didn't mean the gallows variety!

Forrest: We didn't expect to see you alive again, Commander.
A. G.: And I didn't expect to become the first person ever to deploy an escape pod at warp speed.
Archer: And I should have expected that setting just one record on this flight wouldn't be good enough for you.

Vulcan: This spectacular failure proves your engine design is unsound.
Tucker: There's nothing wrong with that engine!
Forrest: Who are you?
Tucker: Lieutenant Charles Tucker, sir, of the Engineering team. My friends call me -- (trips over a toolbox and falls down)
Archer: Let me guess.

Archer: Pilot error!
A. G.: Engine flaw!
Archer: Pilot error!
A. G.: Engine flaw!
Forrest: (over the comm) Commodore Forrest to Club 602. Are Commanders Robinson and Archer over there? I need their analysis of the cause of the accident.
Ruby: Yes, sir -- I can see them working on their report right now.

Captain Archer: The accident gave the Vulcan Advisory Council the perfect excuse to get the NX program cancelled. They wanted us to go back to the drawing board.
T'Pol: Yet your father's engine design ultimately did prove successful in powering Enterprise.
Archer: True, but it was a long road getting from there to here. And we'd never have made it if A. G. hadn't had....
T'Pol: Faith of the heart?
Archer: Something like that.

Commander Archer: We need to tell the commodore about Trip's calculations. They show that our engine just needs a few adjustments to make it work.
A. G.: Big deal. The only way to prove it is to borrow the second prototype and take it up for a spin.
Archer: I'm game if you are.
A. G.: Okay, you're on. Let's get started on those adjustments. What's the first one on Tucker's list?
Archer: Putting me in the pilot's seat.

Archer: Warp one point nine... warp two....
A.G: Whoa! Here we go again with the bucking bronco routine!
Archer: Hang on! Warp two point one....
A. G.: Remember that I lost it when the needle reached two point two!
Archer: Then it's time to try Trip's idea! (flips a switch) There -- I've disconnected the speed indicator!
A. G.: I'll be damned... it worked! We're still in one piece! YeeeeeeH--
Forrest: (over the comm) GET THE HELL BACK HERE RIGHT NOW, YOU TWO!
A. G.: Ouch. Think the Commodore's going to have us shot?
Archer: Slowly and repeatedly would be my guess.

Captain Archer: Fortunately, I turned out to be wrong about the firing squad.
T'Pol: So I see. What about the NX program?
Archer: The Vulcans had us run simulations for a whole year before they admitted that the engine design was workable.
T'Pol: What finally convinced them?
Archer: One of our pilots accidentally pushed the static ground simulator a bit too far. It took off and got halfway to Jupiter before we were able to catch up with it.

Tucker: Welcome back. Did my spatial charges light up that nebula all right?
Archer: Beautifully. I brought you back a postcard of the result.
Tucker: Gosh, I wish I could have been there.
Archer: Me too -- but T'Pol was right. She had to come along as a backup in case the charges didn't work.
Tucker: I don't see how she could have made a giant cloud of dark matter turn bright crimson.
T'Pol: Do not underestimate my abilities, Commander. I could probably cause the same reaction in you by offering you a session of Vulcan neuropressure.
(Enterprise heads off at Ludicrous Speed)


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This fiver was originally published on September 19, 2005.

DISCLAIMER: A lot of stuff in here is copyrighted by Paramount Pictures. My intent isn't to infringe on that; I and those like me are just having a little fun in the universe Gene Roddenberry created. I don't think he'd mind.


All material © 2005, Marc Richard.