"Tuvok to Janeway"
"Yes, Tuvok." She glanced at Chakotay rolling her eyes upward.
"Captain, it seems Mr. Neelix has encountered a problem on the planet and requires your assistance."
"Now?" She sighed, if only they could have one uninterrupted meal.
"At your convenience, Captain. Mr. Neelix will not be going anywhere."
"Where is he, Tuvok?" She gave Chakotay a warning look when he threatened to laugh at her growing impatience .
"It seems, Captain, that he has been incarcerated by the local authorities."
"What? Wh . . .. On my way. Janeway out." She cut the link and shook her head. "What do you suppose he has done now?"
"With Neelix, I wouldn’t even venture a guess." He laughed and she punched his arm.
"Ouch! Come on, Kathryn, I’m sure it nothing serious. Want me to go with you?"
"Maybe you better—I’m losing patience with his antics." She rolled her eyes. "Come on –keep me from getting arrested for killing him."
"Janeway to Tuvok." She hit her comm badge as they entered the lift.
"Tuvok here, Captain."
"Send Neelix’s location to transporter room one. The Commander and I are on our way there now."
They materialized in an old building crowded with what appeared to be the seedier side of the population. They made their way through the milling groups toward a large desk in the back of the room.
"Can I help you?" The man behind the desk growled without looking up.
"I hope so. I’m Captain Janeway of …"
"Oh yea, heard about you." He stood up and looked her over. "Hump, so you’re a Starship Captain—who 'da thought."
"Yes—well I’m looking for a member of…"
"Yea, the little yellow guy—I know." He picked up a communication device. "The Lady Captain is here—Yea, OK." He eyed her again. "He’ll be right with you."
"Thank you." Kathryn surveyed the surrounding room and glanced at Chakotay who was doing his best to hold back his laughter. "Nice place."
"I’ve seen worse." He laughed when she raised her eyebrow.
"I don’t even want to know."
"Captain?" A deep male voice spoke directly behind her.
"Yes." She turned to face a well dressed man. "I‘m Captain Janeway and this is Commander Chakotay."
"I’m Lieutenant Harrison." He smiled and extended his hand shaking both of theirs. "Captain, Commander, please come this way."
They followed him into a small office. He took a seat behind the desk and offered them the two in front of it.
"Lieutenant." She spoke once they were all seated. "Just what has Neelix been charged with?"
"Indecent exposure." He was holding back his smile, as he watched the color rise in her face. "It seems, Captain, your Mr. Neelix was discovered in a public place --- without his clothing."
"Lieutenant. . ." She dropped her head rubbing her hand across her forehead. The Lieutenant and the Commander exchanged smiles over her head. "Did he offer any explanation for this behavior?"
"That he did, Captain. And personally, I’m inclined to write this one off to cultural differences and release him into your custody without formal charges"
"I appreciate that, Lieutenant, and I will see to it there are no further incidents."
"I’ll have him brought up." He picked up the communication device. "Ganes, please bring Mr. Neelix to my office." He set it down. "It will only be a few minutes."
"Thank you." The Captain just wanted to go home and forget this.
"Lieutenant?" Chakotay however couldn’t resist. "Just what was his reasoning?"
"Well. . ." he lowered his head and then raised it smiling at them. "He was attempting to clean his garments and being unfamiliar with our washing machines, he followed the directions exactly—including. . ." he came around the desk and held out a plastic container, "those on the detergent bottle."
Neither the Captain nor the Commander could hold
back their laughter when they read the following instructions. "Remove
clothing before distributing in washing machine."