Chronicles of Bloc. Pilot episode part II

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2 years ago

Part II of the pilot episode of the spin-off series, part I can be read here.

==IMV Ferengon==

By the time the IMV Ferengon came with the visual range of the starbase Bloc had memorized every single blueprint of the parts he had bought the rights to, researched all he could about the Station's administration and its staff, memorized every letter of the contract between him and the Federation, compiled a list of things to do and decided on the location he'd have his quarters built eventually when the money had started flowing in.

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Home?

So when the first image of the station came upon the viewscreen he had all the time to take in every line, every mark, and every rivet that the outside of the Starbase that had become known as “Legacy” and burnt it into his memory.

When he'd laid eyes on the Cylindrical tube-form with leaf-like protrusions sticking out from the most bulged portion of that tube a sense of purpose came over him. For the first time in his life, he had a sense of coming home.

Looking around

As soon as the airlock opened Bloc stepped inside the station and looked around. He'd docked at one of the moors connection to the more spacious areas of the station and he marveled at the size of the place. His Klingon upbringing and bearing showed nothing but inside he felt like a little child getting a very big, and awesome, present.

His tricorder was wirelessly connected to the eyepiece he wore and on it an arrow indicated the best way to the temporary quarters he'd selected from the number of quarters that were located throughout “his” part of the station. He headed in the direction it told him to and leisurely strolled through the station.

He was grateful that nobody had yet been informed of his arrival and was able to go unrecognized. He suspected pretty soon there would be little chance of taking strolls like this anymore.

The contract which he had with the Federation turned out to be much more cunningly constructed than he'd given the negotiators credit for at the time and the job that they'd peddled as no more than giving his thumbprint on forms from time to time had referred to as “and perform the duties of civil administration as defined in the standard operating procedure 572” actually meant he was responsible for everything civilian on the entire Starbase.

Big responsibility

Not only the visitors to the station, proprietors of businesses on the station fell under his responsibility but also the civilians working in support of Starfleet's personnel. Teachers, sanitation workers, catering, Entertainment personnel, the families of Starfleet officers living on the station, and everyone else without a Starfleet uniform were his responsibility from the moment the contract was signed.

Real estate wise he only had to worry about the areas he'd bought the rights to. Daily maintenance and operational management were his responsibility but the critical systems and the major maintenance tasks remained in Starfleet's engineering dept. And so did all systems that could directly affect Starfleet's operations or Starfleet's systems.

Overwhelmed

By the time Bloc had reached the quarters and plunked down on the bed inside it the initial enthusiasm and confidence he had felt had dwindled considerably and felt somewhat overwhelmed by the enormity of the responsibility that Starfleet had outmaneuvered him into. He had much greater respect for the Federation's lobe for business despite their insistence on having a moneyless economy.

Of course his Klingon side refused to even acknowledge the possibility of backing away from the duties he'd agreed to take on and nothing would stop him from stepping up to the call of duty and battling all odds that stood in the way of performing his duty with honor. His Ferengi side was fine with that, as long as they made a profit along the way.

The key

“Delegation is the key” he said out loud to the emptiness of the quarters and the darkness in the bedroom. “Get the right people to do the right jobs and to give him the information he needed when he needed it. If he could pull that off, everything would work out perfectly.

Sleep took Bloc quickly then, marking day one of his life on Starbase Legacy.

The first day working

It was 05:30 when Bloc woke up, in his clothes on the bed, exactly where he'd fallen asleep so abruptly the night before. He felt amazingly refreshed though his back and muscles complained a bit about the awkward position they'd been in while he slept.

Stretching and yawning he made his way to the bathroom and, after shedding his clothes, took a refreshing sonic shower. After completing his grooming rituals, teeth nice and sharp to mention one of them, he had a hardy breakfast and went over some of the notes he had made on his way here. Then, determined to get his business side of things up and running as soon as possible so he would have an income, he left his quarters and had the tricorder put up the route to his office on his eyepiece.

The office

At 06:00 exactly, as if planned, he stepped through the doors to what would become the epic center of his operations on the station. It was unadorned and utilitarian with nothing more but a single desk and an office chair to furnish it. He would have to make some changes to that he decided but that would have to wait.

First things first of course.

Sitting behind the desk he activated the computer console and checked if there were authorizations set up for him already. To his surprise there were and he found he was extensively authorized for the computer systems and areas that controlled or monitored the civilian systems and areas of the Starbase.

Before he could start with designing the layout of the civilian parts he had the rights to, as far as they were not yet occupied by quarters or shops or the like, he knew he had to figure out the possibilities for power consumption.

No use building a casino if he couldn't get the power for the dabo tables right? Punching up a request in the computer for that information he was rewarded with a “Not authorized” notice however which made sense, as power production and distribution were Starfleet controlled.

Messages

“Computer, please send a message to the office of Starfleet's Chief Engineer on this Starbase requesting a meeting to discuss civilian power consumption possibilities at his earliest convenience,” Bloc ordered.

”Acknowledged” the computer dutifully replied.

“Computer, please send the following message to the station commanding officer: Captain, my name is Block, son of Quch of the house of wISuq. I do not know if the news has gotten through to you from Starfleet but I have recently acquired the rights to exploitation of a large part of Starbase Legacy and have been appointed Manager of civil matters on the station. I would like to request a meeting with you at your earliest convenience to get to know each other and to discuss our business relationship if you will. Thank you in advance.” Bloc stated to the computer.

Again the computer acknowledged the command and Bloc leaned back for a moment deciding what to do next. He decided that he should see what personnel was working in the civil hierarchy at the moment and see if any of them could be of use to him in the future.

He bent forward to the computer screen and went to work.

Later that day

The first day Bloc spent as the Civil Admin on the Starbase Legacy had been a productive one.

He had identified and messaged the Starfleet people he had to work with requesting a meeting with both of them, had established the several staff positions he would have to get filled, had identified and messaged the Civilian personnel that currently worked in positions that either fell under his management completely now or overlapped with some of the duties of his function or the area's to which he'd acquired the rights of exploitation.

He had also begun to sketch up the commercial strategy for the running of his commercial business here on Legacy.

The company's company and its employee

First, he would make sure to cut all ties between his business from that day forth and the business that had led to it by dissolving and liquidating Bloc Enterprises and funneling the funds to a subsidiary of House of wISuq Inc.

Then he liquidated that subsidiary and started a new company, a wholly-owned subsidiary of House of wISuq Inc, called “Ferengon Legacy corp.”.

The contract he had with the Federation had been signed and sealed to his own personal name and so he could easily and legally “outsource” the operational work and management to a third company and that is exactly what he would do. So he would have a contract between himself and Ferengon Legacy corp.

The company would be responsible for all but the duties of the Civil administrator in Bloc's part of the Starbase and receive 80% of the profits as payment. 20% of the profits went to Bloc himself.

As the CEO of Ferengon Legacy Corp he would receive an annual salary of course with a hefty bonus if the corporation exceeded some target goals for growth or profit. As Ferengon Legacy Corp.'s only shareholder, being the owner of House of wISuq's shares, he would then eventually collect the full 100% of the profits made from his commercial ventures here on the Starbase.

Ferengon Legacy Corp. Would be based around the Hotel/Resort he would build first. It would control the private quarters, the casino, the bar, holosuite, and catering services Bloc would offer at several reasonable price ranges.

Then there'd be the daughter company of the hotel/resort company which would control the commercial shop-space that Bloc would have on offer for smaller businesses or entrepreneurs, as well as the exploitation of small vending machines and shops Bloc might think of later.

The details of it all weren't yet set in Duranium but he was pretty pleased with himself as he had the computer put all of the plans he had so far into a schematic representation and took a good look at it.

N.Peasee

Then, feeling he'd done enough for the day and not seeing any replies to his meeting requests in his inbox, he began clearing his desk and transferring all the files he had created, used, or modified into his own encrypted storage space. Just as the computer chimed to notify Bloc the data had been transferred the chime from his office door announced someone on the other side.

Frowning at the lousy timing and curious as to who it could be he snapped “Come in” at which the doors swooshed open. A Human man of middle age stepped into Bloc's office and he immediately recognized the man to be Legacy's Civilian liaison to Starfleet.

Up until Bloc's arrival and his assumption of the newly established Civil Administrator position, the man had been the middleman between the civilians and Starfleet on the Starbase.

“Good evening mr. Peasee” Bloc said while offering his hand in greeting.

As the man took and shook the hand Bloc added “I am Bloc, son of Quch, the new Civil Administrator of Starbase 801. Pleased to meet you”.

The man looked Bloc in the eye and firmly gripped Bloc's hand when he shook it.

“I am Nick Peasee, liaison between the Civilians and Starfleet. I take the requests from the Civilians and put them before Starfleet. Then take the fleet's reply back and find the compromise that inevitably has to be reached to make both happy” Peasee introduced himself.

Bloc offered the man a seat at the lounge table in his office and, beverages from the replicator in hand, sat down across the table from him. After a moment of silence which Bloc filled drinking the large mug of prune juice he held Bloc opened the conversation.

“You want to know if you're still needed now I'm here” Bloc simply stated. “You're afraid you'll no longer be able to enjoy the benefits of being the only contact the civil population has to make requests from Starfleet.” he added, his voice even and flat.

Peasee looked up startled before recovering and straightening his expression.

“Without implying i would take advantage of thát unique position i must admit that thoughts of that nature have crossed my mind, yes” he answered guardedly.

“well, i am afraid there will be changes. They're unavoidable.” Bloc began carefully observing the man's reactions. When a frown formed on Peasee's forehead he added quickly “old positions, jobs and roles will disappear as Ferengon Legacy Corp. Takes over those responsibilities, but Ferengon Legacy Corp. Does offer other, new opportunities.…”

The man for the job

Peasee's eyes narrowed and his expression brightened somewhat.

“Opportunities for a man such as myself, with detailed knowledge of almost all of the Starbase and its current population perhaps?” he ventured.

“Perhaps a man like you could be a valuable asset to our corporation. In fact, there's a position I have in mind that might be just right for a man like you.” Bloc said, finishing his prune juice.

“Go on” Peasee prodded.

“At least temporarily I need someone that knows how things work at the moment on this Starbase. The position of Civil Administrator is new and the level of autonomy and authority that i and the Ferengon Legacy corporation have been given is as unprecedented as the position of Civil Administrator is. How the cooperation between us and Starfleet will end up working I can only guess at right now but until we have that established and working I need to know how to get things done, who are the go-to people, who are the people not to go to and what dangers i need to guard against.” Bloc explained in a straightforward and almost bored tone of voice.

In the silence that followed a huge smile split Peasee's face before the man started nodding.

Hired

“Mr. C.A. You have found your man. I have exactly the knowledge you need and the commercial skills to use them. I'll take the job!” he told Bloc and stuck out his hand.

In the seemingly universal tradition of shaking hands to validate and close a deal Bloc took the hand and shook firmly. “Welcome to the Ferengon Legacy Corporation, provisional Executive Civil Administrator.” Bloc told Peasee.

“Thanks. You won't regret this!” Peasee replied.

Bloc smiled knowing the corporations now had 2 employees. Soon there'd be more. He had to get business going as soon as he could as the funds he had left would quickly run out paying for the costs of building the Hotel/Resort/Casino and the salary he would have to pay the employees.

If worst came to worst he could always sell the IMV Ferengon of course but he liked that ship. He would do everything he could to prevent having to sell her.

Minutes later he and Peasee agreed Bloc would have the employment agreement in writing ready for thumbprints the next day.

Peasee left the office leaving Bloc alone to contemplate this unexpected turn of events. He had expected the man to come to him eventually but not before he had been forced to hand over his work to the corporation. He had read the man's official public file and 'somehow' obtained most of the man's classified or personal records.

Openly skimming off the top

The man had been with the civilian workforce that had constructed the Starbase from the start and knew every rivet and seam on her except for the areas Starfleet had declared off-limits to civilians. He also knew every civilian resident of the base's population closely and knew exactly which Starfleet officer could provide what and what that officer would need to be persuaded into becoming inclined to provide it.

Bloc knew that Peasee had used his knowledge and middleman position to leach of something from every transaction or agreement that went on, especially those that went off the record, to himself. When two cases of Rigellian whiskey were needed for a power conduit to be extended to power the holo emitters someone had installed in their quarters then Peasee would charge three.

When 300 square feet of cargo space was given to a civilian or business by Starfleet the business would only get 200 and Peasee would use 100 for his private purposes to name a few examples.

It sounded dishonorable and unfair but the way Peasee did it was completely on the up and up. He never claimed he was not making a profit nor did anyone ever ask if he was. He had also kept records on all the transactions he was involved in including any profit he had procured for himself. Everyone had always just assumed Peasee did the work he did because it was his job to do so.

Bloc liked the way Peasee had operated out in the open and Honorable. Having Peasee as his right-hand man was a wonderful acquisition.

Ferengon Legacy Corporation's future shined a little brighter already!

Thank you for reading this.

Stay healthy and stay happy!

@AnonSunamun


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