The Way to the Commonwealth

by Rhonda Eudaly(

Fandom: Andromeda

Pairings: None

Warnings: None

Spoilers: None

Rating: G

Summary: My answer to Sockii's dialogue challenge.

Disclaimers: Characters owned by Roddenberry Productions. Please don't sue me.

It was NOT going well. Seamus Harper was doing his best to keep the ANDROMEDA ASCENDANT from coming apart at the seams. When Dylan Hunt had come out of his 300 year nap, it had seemed like such a grand adventure. Now after everything the slapped together crew had dealt with and survived, Harper wished he'd never gotten out of bed today. He wanted his mommy... though, in this case, Romie would do, but she was busy with other things.

"Harper! How much longer?" Dylan's voice came over the communications system.

"I'm working on it. I'm working on it!"

"Work faster."

"I am. I am. It looked a lot easier in the instruction manual," Harper growled. "I could use some help."

"Already on the way."

The communications channel went dead. Harper continued to grumble to himself as he continued the repairs. A moment later, a hand landed on the engineer's shoulder. Harper jumped, whacking his head on the machinery and cursed vividly. He stood up more slowly and turned to see Tyr Anasazi standing there, looking disgusted.

"I'm here," Tyr intoned. "What is it you need me to do?"

Harper thrust a sheaf of film at him. "Here. Trace this relay. I'm working on finding a neural input," Harper said, heading back into the machinery. Then he popped back out with a warning. "Whatever you do, DON'T PUSH THE RED BUTTON."

Tyr looked across the narrow walkway to see a large red button. He raised an eyebrow at Harper. "Why? What does it do."

"Trust me. You don't want to know."

Tyr nodded and began his task. This was beneath his Neitzschean breeding. He should be out fighting the great evils of the universe, not tracing power relays. Though, now that he noticed, there was something odd about the conduits he was in. Something didn't seem right. Power surged through a nearby line, giving Tyr a nasty shock. The purely physical reaction entangled him in a clot of wires and conduit. His involuntary shout brought Harper running. The engineer slid to a halt and stifled a laugh. Tyr thrashed, trying to reach him.

"Don't you dare laugh, or else I'm gonna have to come after you and hurt you."

Harper sobered immediately, not doubting it, but in the strange scene, he saw something familiar. "Ah hah! There it is!"

Tyr looked at him as the engineer dove for a particular bit of electronics. He narrowed his eyes at the engineer. "And where do you think you're gonna stick THAT?"

Harper grinned and plugged the end into his neural implant in the side of his neck. A moment later, several formerly dead systems powered up. Harper grinned and removed the plug. "Harper to Dylan."

"Tell me it's good news, Harper."

"Am I an engineering god, or what? The food systems are back on line and powered up. You may go ahead with the banquet. Bon apetit and good luck."

Harper cut the communications line and started to walk away. Tyr cleared his throat. "Aren't you forgetting something?"

Harper looked back. "Oh, right. I guess they do need you."

"Only if they want this banquet to succeed. I am the only gourmand on this ship, and ..."

"And the way to the Commonwealth is through their stomachs. Okay, let's get you out of there."

"If you would be so kind," Tyr snarled. "It's your fault I'm in here anyway."

Harper moved as if to help him and brushed against the large red button. A vent above Tyr opened, dumping a large amount of liquid on the Neitzschean. Tyr roared with anger, and Harper took off, knowing the head start wouldn't be much, but all he was going to get.