COMMANDER: (Ranting as he storms down a hallway.) The fleet has sucked on the Galactagogue’s teat for far too long.
ENSIGN: (Cornered by COMMANDER in same hallway.) I don’t understand … What are you saying, Commander?
COMMANDER: I’m saying the Galactagogue is drying up, Ensign. So many ships suckling away at our finite supplies … Our inability to have any alone time … Not being able to frakkin’ sleep more than two hours in a row … We’re done!
ENSIGN: But, sir, it’s our job to feed and protect the fleet.
COMMANDER: Sure, sure, that’s our job. But it’s time for the fleet to mature. A fleet this old is supposed to be able to go for several hours—frak, all night —without having to hungrily call the Galactagogue for supplies.
ENSIGN: Well, you don’t want the fleet to become distrustful and jaded because its supply lines were severed too soon, do you, Commander? Receiving resources from the mothership is important for the fleet’s growth and development. It gives the fleet confidence to grow. A nurturing environment is very importa—
COMMANDER: And what about our growth, Ensign? The Galactagogue was made to be more than just a supply ship. She enjoyed a very prestigious post before she had to take on the protection of the fleet. The Galactagogue was a respected member of society, even. She had shiny decks and launch tubes that didn’t sag.
(The COMMANDER heaves a large sigh.)
She was a beautiful ship.
ENSIGN: She still is a beautiful ship, sir. A beautiful, life-giving ship. And think about this, sir: Sooner than you think, the fleet will be on its own. You’ll feel wistful for these early days.
COMMANDER: Oh, frak you, Ensign. Don’t give me any of that frakkin’ “the hours are long but the days are short” bullshit. There’s only so much a ship can give before she needs a little shore leave. The Galactagogue’s hoses are stretched thin. Her supplies are waning.
ENSIGN: I’m not sure what you want me to do, Commander.
COMMANDER: Just shut up and go get me some blessed-thistle tea with a side of oatmeal and fennel. The Galactagogue will soldier on as she always has.
ENSIGN: Excellent, sir. Right away, sir.
COMMANDER: And, Ensign, don’t forget to grab some marshmallow root while you’re—oh my God, what is that smell! Is it time to clean the waste-processing ship already? Didn’t we just do that? Frak.