"Fine Fit"
[Previous post "Fast Finesse"]

Setting: MASQUERADE DREAMS, Lower Decks
Stardate: 30152.2215

Over the last two hours, while Uxtar went on with his duties as a member of the maintenance staff, the Hirogen kept thinking back to what the ANUBIS' First Officer had done.  Without hesitation she had stepped up and taken the heat that had been aimed in the hunter’s direction.  Now he knew that this had been done for the sake of the mission, but still the action taken by Commander Shar'El had made him feel as if he had been an actual and valued member of the team.

Two whole years by himself in the Delta Quadrant had made Uxtar forget what it felt like to belong to a crew, to belong to a group of people who acted towards one another more like family.  This had proven to be something that despite his greatest efforts the hunter had missed more than he cared to admit.

“I was told that there was some sort of commotion in the Main Dining Area earlier this evening,” Drask Pharren said as the unexpected figure appeared in the hunter’s field of vision just as he turned the corner.  For a split second the Hirogen cursed himself for not having picked up on the man’s presence long before now, his thoughts stuck on the earlier event.  Had he not been distracted Uxtar should have picked up on something from the merchant, a scent or a sound warning him of the impendent ambush.  In the Delta Quadrant, such a lapse could have easily cost him his life, a realization that hit the hunter very hard.

“Nothing of importance,” Uxtar said dismissively trying to think of the best way to approach the situation while not abandoning himself to his own anger.  “One of the passengers became agitated and I simply insured that no one got hurt.”

“Agitated?” the employer repeated in a way that clearly challenged the Hirogen's statement.  Although Uxtar had not been flat out accused of lying, the way the Pythron merchant had looked back at him had left little room for anything else.  “Now, you wouldn't happen to know who the young lady was who left with him after he became ‘agitated’.”
“A friend I would guess,” the reply came after a few seconds, the Hirogen trying to make it appear as if he had been thinking back to the event. The reality had been that he had tried to find a way to return the favor Commander Shar'El had done for him in some small way.  “They did seem like they knew one  another as they left,” the hunter added hoping that his story would fit whatever information he had already been in possession of in regards to Doctor Doyanne and Jayson Stark.  “Whoever she was though, it was not the woman you have hired me to find, she doesn’t fit the profile.”

“Fit the profile,” the merchant said with an actual chuckle.  “Please, I would greatly appreciate you educating me in this profile of yours.”

The merchant known as Drask Pharren had not been one to trust people, that the Hirogen had gathered, but this lack of trust seemed to border on the edge of paranoia which would make the situation severely more difficult to handle. Still Uxtar continued to play the role of the hired hand.  “You mentioned to me during our first meeting that the woman you are looking for is capable of changing her hair color and that she possesses certain medical training.  I did my research base on the information you provided and know that the prey would likely revert to a white colored hair when dealing with some sort of medical situation.  The woman who came to the gentleman’s aid in the Main Dining Area had light blonde hair, not white. Plus her physical form did not match the general idea of the prey.  Changing one’s appearance is one thing; diminishing one’s height is an entirely different matter.”

“Alright,” the merchant hissed, “I guess I will just have to trust you on this issue.  Just remember, I hired you to find her, not spend your time flattening other passengers.  I have been waiting too long to get my hands on her and I want this hunt of yours to be completed as quickly as possible.”
Paranoid and impatient, the Pythron merchant had been a very unstable man, one that Uxtar knew he needed to handle with that much more care from now on.

“You have nothing to worry about,” the hunter said in as much a reassuring manner as he could.  “My duties as a member of the maintenance staff grant me access to all of the areas where the passengers can go, and it is only a matter of time before I can track down the prey.  Once I do, you will be informed, but in the meantime it would be more prudent for you if you avoided contacting me in such manner. Your presence here could create issues that would conflict with our shared final objective.”

“Fine,” Drask said with displeasure. “We will not meet again before your hunt is completed, but do not fool yourself to believe that I will not be keeping a very close watch on you and your activities.  I am not one to let my investments go unsupervised.”

Uxtar watched as the Pythron merchant angrily walked away, certain that his last words had been as much of a threat as the man could give.  The Hirogen would have to be that much more careful from now on to insure that nothing would be done or said that could endanger the rest of the team or even give away Ya’Jun in her new identity.

Mark Hutchings

Lieutenant JG Uxtar
Currently on an undercover mission

[Earth is the insane asylum for the universe.]