“Gossip, gossip, darlings!” The voice on the viewer was insistently cheerful and had a British accent of some posh area. “This is Rona Moran, your Dish with the Dish, here to give you all the latest gossip!”
“I don’t see why you watch that drivel,” Stuart Reed complained to his wife as she knitted, at their home in Kota Baru. He had the remote in his hand and was threatening to change it.
“Oh, honestly!” Mary Reed exclaimed, her needles clicking away. “Sometimes this is the only way I can ever get any news of Malcolm. So hush!”
“All right,” he grumbled, arms folded.
“Now,” continued the woman on the viewer, who was wearing a multicolored caftan and also had on a matching snood, “I’ve got news of the NX-01. You see, it was on November the twenty-second, just a scant week ago, when the Enterprise was boarded by Insectoids!”
“Now wait just a moment,” now Stuart was interested, “how does she know that? We haven’t heard anything from Malcolm about this.”
“We don’t hear from him much at all. Now, just pay attention, love.”
“I know, darlings, I know,” Rona Moran continued, “it’s rather distressing indeed. And the official channels,” she made exaggerated air quotes as she spoke, “are all in denial mode. But you know I have my sources! Well, they were lucky, I understand, and no one was badly hurt. There was even an Insectoid killed in the kitchen. With a fry pan, I understand! Now,” she chuckled, “darlings, it’s a serious business and all, the death of a sentient being – even an enemy combatant – but I can’t help but to be slightly amused by the idea of such an incident. It makes one wonder,” she lowered her voice to a stage whisper, “whether those, those phase rifles they’ve all got, you know them, right, darlings? They got them at the start of this war, in April, was it? Well, this is quite an achievement for 2153, I say. It makes one wonder whether those phase rifles shouldn’t all just be replaced with, with fry pans and crockery and bits and bobs of cutlery. Wouldn’t that be a sight, eh?”
“She’s an idiot,” Stuart complained.
“Oh hush, dear.”
Rona continued, “My other news is that it is my understanding that a pair of upper-level officers is an item. One is … and this information will no doubt be of interest to Ambassador Soval … one is reportedly one of the non-humans on board the vessel. Now, there are but two non-humans on board. One is their physician, who is of a race called the Denobulans. The other is a Vulcan. I leave the remainder to your all-too vivid imaginations, darlings.” She peered into the camera directly. “My sincere hope is that the entirety of that crew returns home alive and in one piece. And if they seek a spot of comfort in each other’s arms, well, then who are we to judge? So be kind as you speculate, all right? I know some of my competition isn’t always. But you, my audience, darlings, I know you’re all better than that. So keep that in mind, will you? Ciao, darlings. Rona Moran signing off now.”
Mary and Stuart looked at each other. “Malcolm’s dating a Vulcan?” Stuart asked.
Mary thought for a moment. “Huh. Perhaps,” She went back to her knitting for the remainder of the evening as they were both left to speculate on whether that was at all possible, or desirable.