Disclaimer 1: This story is intended for adults. While there is no explicit sex within the story, there are allusions to sexual acts, including sex slavery, prostitution, underage sex, pregnancy, extramarital affairs, and chipmunks. If it is illegal to read this story where you are, don't read it. All characters in this story are fictional. Any resemblance to actual people is coincidental.
Disclaimer 2: The copyright stance taken by Universal Music Group within this story is purely speculative. To my knowledge, neither Universal Music Group nor U2 have stated their policy on intellectual property rights in the event of a pre-apocalyptic interstellar diaspora. You will have to ask them yourself.
Foreword: This story takes place in the Swarm Cycle shared story universe, created by Thinking Horndog. This story will probably be an exceptionally confusing entry point for a newcomer to the Swarm Cycle. If you are not familiar with the premise of this universe, I would recommend you first read Thinking Horndog's stories 'Average Joes' and 'Pickup Number Eighteen'. (Bonus: Those stories have sex in them.)
by Bad Line Ghoul
August 17, Year 3
"I come bearing gifts," Sergeant Hulegu said, entering the office.
"Hello, Hoola," Decurion Brett Melman said, not looking up from his work. "What did I win? I hope it's not more traumatized spare concubines."
"Hulegu," the female Marine grumped, "Hoo-lay-goo. It's not that hard."
"You need a nickname." The Civil Service officer looked up with a warm smile. "It looks like you need tea, too."
"Yes, please." She slumped in a chair, her proud Mongolian features betraying her exhaustion. "I need more than tea, but the hard stuff is putrid up here. And I was raised on fermented goat milk."
Melman stood to prepare the tea. "That's why you need a nickname, Hoola. You already look and speak like you stepped right out of the Golden Horde. You scare people."
"It's useful to be scary," she replied.
"Sometimes." He glanced across the room. Optio Pribbles was jamming paperwork into the filing cabinet like she was trying to kill Sa'arm in the bottom of the folders. "Sometimes it's a drawback."
Hulegu followed his gaze, curious. "Isn't that the volunteer Blake brought up the other day?" she asked quietly. "The rural girl, from his first pickup? I thought she was going to the Marines."
The little blonde teen began to slam the filing drawer open and shut furiously, banging as loudly as she could and growling through clenched teeth.
"Yes, she was," Melman said quietly. He raised his voice, but maintained his usual soothing tone. "Chastity, calm down please. You remember our talk about office decorum."
"Yes, Commander," she said. She looked at Sgt. Hulegu's uniform with envy.
"Decurion," Melman corrected. He turned back to his Marine guest, handing her a cup of tea. "So, Hoola, you said you had a gift for me. Is it oysters?"
"No, not the oysters. I found you some staff," the sergeant said, a little uncomfortably. "We picked him up at a resort spa in Germany. He specifically requested Civil Service."
"Excellent!" Melman beamed. "That is a gift, but I doubt I'll get to keep him -- the colonies need staffing far more than Artemis Base. I hope he's not afraid of hard work."
"I've seen the sub-scores, and his work ethic is excellent. In fact..." she paused, looking around. "Your conks aren't working in the office today, are they?"
"No," he replied, "they're with the spares down the hall, setting up the brothel for tonight. Why?"
"Jezebels!" Chastity shrieked from her filing cabinet. "Wanton painted whores!"
"That's enough, Optio Pribbles," he said firmly, closing his eyes in frustration. "Take your lunch break."
"I already did!" the girl objected.
"Then take a second lunch," he insisted. "You're eating for two now. And remember..."
"Stay aware from the spares," Chastity finished. She stormed from the room, giving the drawer of the filing cabinet a final slam.
"Apologies," he told Hulegu. "That girl will make a fine Marine in nine months, but she's a complete disaster as a CS officer." He opened his eyes brightly. "But enough about my worries, tell me about this new gentleman."
The Marine looked even more uncomfortable. "AI, display the dossier for Volunteer Wladislaw Pognanski. And tell Blake to escort him to the Decurion's office."
A standard dossier layout appeared on the wall -- standard, except for the flashing red border. Melman didn't notice the border, his eyes had snapped to the overall CAP score, displayed in bold type.
"7.6!" He squealed with glee, then ran over to the wall display, looking over the sub-scores. "Maximum scores on empathy, leadership, personnel organization, paternal instinct! Damn close to maximum on basic intelligence! Not very aggressive, but that's an asset for us! For Civil Service purposes, he's effectively a nine or a ten!"
Melman read on, his heart in his throat. "Basic engineering background ... how on earth was this gentleman just a simple dockworker? Oh, looks like he has trouble following orders. Well, I suppose that's no matter, we don't have a lot of middle management. With scores like this, he'll be running a planetary CS office from the word go! And ... wait ... what's this flag?" The note read 'Do Not Transport To Colony!!!', with the current date.
"Dockworker doesn't quite cover his old job," Hulegu murmured.
"AI, what are the details on this flag?" Melman asked.
<<Volunteer Pognanski was a labor organizer in Gdansk, >> the AI replied from the wall.
Hulegu put her hands up defensively. "Maybe gift was the wrong choice of words."
<<At his pickup, he insisted that his own concubines unionize against him. He encouraged the concubines of other volunteers to do the same.>>
"Unionize?" Melman's face went pale.
<<He was very enthusiastic on the subject.>>
"Hoola, what were you thinking?" He sat down slowly. "Don't you understand what we do here?" He drank down the rest of his tea, his hand shaking. "We're not like the colonial Civil Service offices, we rarely have to deal with 'widowed' or 'orphaned' concubines. Our main job here is rehabilitating new concubines who can't adjust, teaching them to be happy as, well, as breeding stock and property."
"I know, Brett," she assured him. "Remember? You took on Tasha when I couldn't handle her, gave me Alice instead. She's been great, by the way, she's really gotten close to Gregor."
The CS officer nodded. "So you, of all people, should see the problem. I'm all for improved conditions for concubines, I've fought for it tooth and nail, but, but, this? Here? Introducing an idea like collective bargaining would make it impossible for these people to adjust to their status. This man could undo everything this office has done!"
Hulegu sighed. "I know, and I looked for somewhere else to stash him. I tried every other posting I could. DECO flat out refuses to put him on a transport ship, they're afraid he might inadvertently start a rebellion."
"Yes, a fair concern," Melman agreed.
"That leaves assignments here in Earthat," she continued. "He can't do extractions, he'd contaminate all the new conks."
"No, we couldn't have that," he said, "my office would be swamped. We're stretched too thin as it is."
"Command won't take him, they don't want him anywhere near their conks. I brought him over to Logistics, he should be perfect for them. They laughed as soon as they saw him, then ran us out of the office when they read the file." Hulegu sighed. "Then my CO, Lt. Amiens, got wind of the guy. He insisted I get rid of him immediately. Actually, he ordered me to space him, but the AI stepped in."
Just then, the door opened and two men entered. Melman had met one of them -- Private Ed Blake, who had brought in a handful of concubines who had been rejected by their sponsor. The second man looked to be in his sixties. He was bald, with a bristly walrus mustache, an idiotic grin, and twinkling blue eyes. His C-cup man-breasts rested comfortably atop the spare tire around his belly. He was only wearing a Speedo. The first impression was of the illicit love child of Santa Claus and a manatee.
"Oh Lord," Melman said under his breath.
"He did request Civil Service," Sergeant Hulegu said.
"Hello boss!" the man smiled vacantly, waving.
"Decurion," Blake saluted smartly. "May I present your newest employee, Wola ... Wulda..." Blake shrugged. "Call him Pogs, he seems to like it."
Pogs laughed, still waving idly.
Melman rubbed his fingers over the bridge of his nose. "A pleasure. I'm Decurion Brett Melman. You should know, Optio..."
<<Due to his high CAP score, Wladislaw Pognanski has been granted an initial rank of Signifer.>>
"Lovely," Melman sighed. "As I was saying, Signifer, we have a dress code in this office. If you would be so kind, use that replicator to make yourself a Civil Service uniform."
Pognanski plodded over to the corner and began happily conversing with the wall in Polish.
Blake sat. "Speaking of uniforms, I passed that Pribbs kid in the hall, wearing CS gray. Why isn't she in the Marines?"
Melman nodded. "It's only temporary. She was impregnated during her extraction, and the AIs want her away from any dangerous tasks until she gives birth. Apparently, we're the safest department in the sector."
.... There is more of this story ...