Cabin 3

This is Buckley, the ship’s rat.

He sneaked on board with his wife Doreen on 30th April 2009 in Jacksonville looking for a little adventure, and has been adventuring ever since.

Both Buckley and Doreen accidentally entered the ice-cream nebula contained within the Mardi’s freezer in early July and consumed some. This caused an evolutionary chemical reaction in the two rats, somehow making it possible for them to communicate with humans.

They have since had three litters of off-spring. Buckley isn’t exactly sure how many individual ratpups there are, but he estimates it to be approximately 36.

They original built their next behind the desk in the Communications Room, but have recently relocated to the spacious unoccupied surroundings of Cabin 3. They would like to apologise in advance about any excess squeaking in the middle of the night. You know what kids are like.


8 thoughts on “Cabin 3

  1. haha, just log-in and click on “edit this” and it’s all yours to do with as you please (including deleting the locked bit) 🙂

    going to have to be tonight/tomorrow for AULTTTT, was a heavy weekend in the mountains under the sea, I’ll give you a shout when it’s up and running – will get back to your other comment about the journal thing in a bit, just need to type up the latest and undoubtedly weirdest chapter in this adventure for me…

    p.s for a split second this post reminded me of my days as a bell-boy “Young man, this door is locked”… funny times.

  2. Buckley?

    How are you doing, bud? A comfortable little space you’ve got here.
    Say… …You wouldn’t have happened to hear Smally saying anything about The Black Angel recently, would you? I thought I heard that she was going to be joining us on board sometime. That’d be quite something, eh?

    1. Hi Simon, nice of you to drop by and bend all the way down pressing your nose to this tiny door of mine.

      About the Black Angel, I… um… um… um… oh dear.

      I’m sorry, but I’ve got to go. You know how it is. Things to do… places to be.

      Good day to you sir.

  3. Buckley Vs. The Unimerse Pt.1

    Something has changed.

    Maybe it’s the Mardi. Or maybe it’s me. It’s probably both.

    Everything was much the simpler the last time we sailed. I was a rat. I didn’t talk. The three things I looked forward to were eating, sleeping, and fucking my lovely wife Doreen. Now I barely sleep and I hardly eat, and there’s some other Buckley fucking my lovely wife Doreen. I’m just a ghost. With tiger stripes.

    I am recording this journal into a dicta-phone I found lying around for two reasons. The first reason is because I think that sooner or later someone is going to kill me. The second is because I need to tell somebody or I’ll burst, and because I can’t tell anybody what I’ve seen and what I know, I’m going to tell myself out loud. If the former materialises then hopefully someone else will find this recording and piece it all together.

    Where to begin?

    I think you all know how I got here, but I’ll recap in case you’ve forgotten. It started when I got shot by two Koradji goons. I was so dead that it wasn’t even funny. Came around in the snug darkness of Willoughby Toad’s white suit jacket pocket on a subway train. He was also dead having shot and been shot by Smally in a duel upon the Mardi. Then along she came. The Black Angel. I instantly liked the smell of her, so I jumped onto her palm and ran up her sleeves. She seemed to like me back and for reasons I never fathomed she called me ‘Mousey’.

    Willoughby was resurrected using the Andy Warhol Chocolate Egg Reincarnation method and I stayed behind in limbo. Neither here nor there with the Black Angel, transporting the ghosts of the Unimerse to their final resting places. Since dying, I’d lost my voice, but my mathematical abilities were on the up. I calculated that 67.9% of ghosts ended up in the body of Ylfnogards. I must admit that I liked those days very much. The Black Angel fed me biscuit crumbs and I slept away the days up her sleeves. Everything felt… simple.

    Until she got caught attempting to fix a bet she’d made with Death. The Gods kicked her out of the Astral Plain and she fell to earth in human form. With me still up her sleeve. I was there at the end, shivering with nervous excitement as the Mardi plunged off the edge of the world, fully expecting to die all over again.

    But we didn’t. The Mardi floated, off into space, drifting between the stars while the three of us stood at the Toadstool Treehouse window watching. Willoughby nearly passed out when I piped up. Or rather squeaked. But he kindly imagined my voice back, just before we realised that we couldn’t breathe. So he imagined a giant oxygen bubble around the Mardi. And we floated on.

    For two weeks. Willoughby spent most of the time lying down inside the bubble just staring at the stars, while me and the Black Angel did our best to clean up the ship. The two sharks had returned to the swimming pool inside the War-Room as the water drained away and there was no sign of those little strange pixie gremlin things that lived behind the fridge in Bunkroom 8. There was plenty of soup in the freezer to keep us fed and enough leftover rum to stay suitably drunk. While Willoughby seemed lost and withdrawn, and the Black Angel got used to having a mortal body, I’d never been happier. Poked around. Scurried to and fro. Tidied up the nest. Found a miniature can of orange spray paint and gave myself stripes. Rebuilt my mechanical wings.

    And then he found us. I saw him first. A colourful speck on the horizon, a battered old chrome chariot being drawn by two red dragons across space. The Black Angel was singing and painting in her new cabin, and Willoughby was asleep at the bottom of the bubble beneath the ship. For a long minute I debated whether I should say anything at all.

    ‘Guy in a chariot being pulled across space by two red dragons!’ I finally howled as loud as I could.

    And immediately I regretted it, because things were suddenly not so simple anymore.

  4. I have survived another night on the Mardi.

    [Round of electronic applause from a digital effects box].

    There was the discovery yesterday that the guy Becky brought with her has turned into some kind of fish (though personally without actually seeing him as a fish I’m inclined to be sceptical about that one). I told Willoughby because there was nobody else to tell. Simon was standing in front of the bathroom mirror shouting ‘GERONIMO!’ and then laughing. The remaining interns just look at me blankly like I’m a talking animal or something. Smally and W have disappeared again. Bobby is still in a coma. Jim and Alexander are clearly under the influence of some very powerful drugs. Moppy, Mal, and The Amalfi Glow are nowhere to be found. The Atom Band are still busy rebuilding the Fishbus to varying degrees of success and failure (at one point I overheard Graham saying ‘Dammit. We’re going to have to start again lads.’ Def Mute proceeded to hit himself around the head with a scrench.) Eve is hopeless, as are the robots. Uberpaul, Joe, and Delia are still locked in that recording studio. I did speak to James Redmond but he was blind drunk and refused to give me his autograph. I never asked for his autograph. Even the Jazz Monk seems strangely subdued, sifting through the Galley cupboards in search of something, anything, thicker than the biotic-gruel-shakes. For the record, I have a stash of Tecrusscan nanana-larvae packs in my nest – infinitely superior to the synthetic fruit flavours. But don’t tell anyone.

    I wish the Black Angel were here. I’m certain Willoughby will manage to create mayhem around this fish-incident, even from the awkward position of being handcuffed to the bed in Cabin 2. If she were here, I’m sure she would put the brakes on whatever comes next. Me, I’m guessing it will be some kind of witch-hunt, with pitch-forks and burning torches. When things go wrong on the Mardi there’s always a scapegoat. I wouldn’t be at all surprised if this one ends up on the Jazz Monk’s doorstep.

    Anyway, where was I? Oh yeah. In a big oxygen bubble being towed across space by some old man in a chariot and two mighty red dragons (I believe they are called Elonic Dragons, capable of high speed space flight, but utterly useless over longer distances. There’s a whole herd of them graze on or around the Red Moon… but I’ll get to that eventually. Assuming I don’t get killed first.) So we get towed for some time – several weeks in fact – and we end up on this place called Pirate Moon, one of three moons that revolve around a planet called Sh’Ackull.

    This old man emerges from his chariot, stretches, stretches again, and strides towards us. He is powerfully built with a bearded face, looks a whole lot like Karl Marx to me.

    Only he was wearing a space suit. And he wasn’t making a peace sign with his hand, he was holding a pin, which he promptly used to pop our bubble. I half-expected to die right there and then, but thankfully the air on all three moons is breathable. The old man walked up to the Mardi and patted her on the side, with tears filling up in his eyes, while I jumped inside the Black Angel’s sleeve and the three of us climbed down to the landing pad. Willoughby looked incredibly freaked out. ‘Am I dreaming this?’ he asked.

    The old man laughed heartily and clapped him around the shoulders. ‘No, it’s really me’ he said. ‘And which one of them are you?’

    ‘Willough- I mean… Alfonso’ he said sheepishly.

    ‘ALFONSO!’ boomed the old man, eyes wide open and he burst out laughing again. ‘The runt of the litter! Well I never!’ He leans in close to Willoughby and winks. ‘I always knew it would be you’ he says, and turns in our direction. ‘And who might this be?’

    ‘This is the Black Angel’ says Willoughby. I poke my head out of her sleeve as he stoops and kisses her hand, so that my nose is almost touching his nose. He grins at the sight of me. ‘And Buckley.’

    ‘Enchanted’ says the old man.

    ‘Who are you?’ I ask him.

    ‘Oh, it talks!’ he says, pointing at me and turning to Willoughby. ‘How wonderful! I’m sorry… my name is Midas.’


    I screw up my nose. I know that name from somewhere. Hmmmmmmmmmm.

    Oh… shit, I’ve got to go. There’s some kind of ruckus happening out in the corridor.

    Until later little dicta-phone, I bid you adieu.

  5. Am I still alive?

    [checks for a pulse]

    Phew. I am. Things are looking up.

    Stuff to report: Not much really. Willoughby has escaped from being handcuffed to the bed in Cabin 2, and somebody has injected Fupkin with enough medication to knock out a small herd of elephants. Take a look for yourself. He’s lying there all glassy eyed with his tongue sticking out and the needle still protruding from his neck. Still breathing though.

    Fuck knows where Willoughby went. Or W and Smally for that matter. Rest of the crew seem to be doing well. No major mishaps or outbreaks of Fishmorphings to report. No word from the Chief or Oscar about how that is going. No news is good news I expect. Saw Simon Piler’s handiwork in Storage earlier – a great big filing cabinet… looks ideal for a second nest… just going to have to be patient and wait for the paper to go in.

    So back to my story. The one I need to get out before I get killed.

    That Midas was a curious character. Seems he knew all about the Mardi, in fact once upon a time he owned it. Or rather stole it. She was one of five imperial battle-crusiers gifted by the Ebaxxonites to the Phaetons for helping during the Great War with the Robots. Midas himself was a Phaeton, though he said he had looked like Karl Marx for as long as he could remember. He’d been given the captaincy of the Mardi along with four other generals in the Phaetonic army and had simply sailed off into the sunsets minus his crew, rather than into the heart of the battle.

    As we walked, he stapled some kind of chip into the backs of our necks, apparently translator chips. It felt itchy at first, but I quickly forgot about it and have not noticed it since. Some of you may have noticed itchy necks since boarding the Mardi – this is because Willoughby instructed the little droid called Whistleclick to staple every one of you.

    By and by Midas found his way to the Pirate Moon, where he hooked up with an exiled Ebaxxonite engineer called Metranuc. We were introduced to Metranuc and the rest of Midas’ crew at his rocky base on the outskirts of the Strip. Metranuc was a short white guy with big bulbous red eyes and a beer belly. He wore some sort of welding mask with a digital display on it and was always carrying some kind of electric hammer. Second in command was a Chabracquan called Cizathan. This guy gave me the fucking heebie-jeebies, picking me up and licking me with a grin. I spray-painted him in the face and everything kicked off, Midas having to physically restrain him from eating me there and then. Cizathan’s left and right hand men were two Bantl brothers called Bahlp and Nothorken Ziama. Neither were particularly pleasant individuals, growling smutty insinuations at the Black Angel and frequently spitting up horrendous luminous chunks of gob. The two female crew members were a dirty great giantess called Goidu, and bald monkey woman called Mingurd. Again, neither of them were pleasant. Goidu kept scratching herself, and Mingurd was smoking what appeared to be pan pipes, cackling at Cizathan’s jokes. How Midas ever held this lot together was beyond me.

    He showed us his own ship – a state of the art attack-cruiser called Red Vengeance, said a long time ago he’d traded the Mardi for her, and had never looked back. His crew were restless, seems they had some kind of errand to be running. Midas instructed Metranuc to tow the Mardi into his workshop cave and rig her up like a spaceship again. The little guy lifted his welding mask and looked at him sceptically while picking his nose. ‘Just kit her out so as she can fly’ said Midas. ‘You can take some of the O2G’s we’ve got lying through the back there. One in each room. How many rooms does the ship have?’

    ‘Thirty?’ guessed Willoughby.

    ‘Fuck’ spat Midas, laughing. ‘She used to only have five. Metranuc, take some chickens and trade them at the market for more O2G’s.’

    ‘Why are we helping these strays?’ hissed Cizathan, clearly put out by the chickens.

    ‘Payment’ said Midas. ‘They’re going to help us steal the Seeds.’

    One of the Bantl brothers coughed up an enormous glob of phlegm. ‘What sort of experience have they got? They’ll get themselves killed. Or worse, they’ll get US killed…’

    Midas looked at Willoughby and smiled. ‘I fancy our chances Alfonso. What do you think?’

    Oh shit.

    Is that the time?

    Lunch. If you don’t get into the Galley quickly, those damn interns get all the best gruel.

    More later.

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