Literary Challenges : The Library Computer
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Join Date: Dec 2007
06-20-2011, 12:11 PM
It was almost embarrassing for him to see Armin Merrick typed into the header. The paper was probably his worst, containing factual errors, poor syntax and an argument so poorly constructed it is impossbile to conceive the writer's mental state.
And yet, a printed form of it sat framed on his personal desk in his ready room. The paper was a reminder, nay, a testament to his youthful arrogance. Armin was a young man at the academy, easily four years ahead of the average human. He thought he knew everything, coming from a colony world where he learned to maintain the large agricultural equipment. Starfleet was a passing whim back then.
But then something changed in him. He realized he would be stuck on that stupid colony forever if he didn't escape. He passed the entrance exams with flying colors, aced his first semester and became involved in a plethora of girls that ranged in color across the spectrum. Until the second semester when one of those girls convinced him to take LIT 3237D, Literature Across the Species. The tragic origins of this paper originated here, and its purpose was the comparison of the protagonists in Va Bolyn's
Unto the Valeran Gap
and Fyodor Dostoevsky's
Crime and Punishment
. At least it was meant to be. Armin to this day couldn't finish reading it.
The class itself was a level of boredom Armin had never experienced before. He came from a colony coming just off the precipice of terraformation. There was always something to learn, or plant, or run away from while sneaking through the woods as a child. While that thing you were running away from was just a noise your older sister made, the sounds of his Bolian professor reading off the syllabus were equally as frightening and proved more deadly. Armin had even wondered if the mind-controlling aliens that infiltrated Starfleet Academy so many years ago - he had heard of this story through some of the groundskeepers - still maintatined a presence in Professor Dalen Broht.
Armin used the paper, replicated by Professor Broht only so he could scrawl a giant 'F' across every page in red ink, as a tool for humility. He knew he took his crew's expertise for granted. There were times he didn't care. Those were the times when he looked at the four red letters staring at him from his desk. He would listen to his officers and even reconsider his own tactical appraisals. It would remind him that he wasn't the best captain in the fleet like he wasn't the best student at the Academy.
But perhaps the best lover, as all those women may attest...