5566/It is a big starship

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It is a big starship
Date of Scene: 13 March 2021
Location: Maxima's Starship
Synopsis: Conner goes exploring and meets Maxima (or perhaps a simulacrum of her)
Cast of Characters: Conner Kent, Maxima

Conner Kent has posed:
This space trip is getting a bit longer than expected. Conner has almost finished his college homework and then he is left with little to do. Look, Quill's music is kind of... too slow for him. And the Guardians are amusing in a crazy way, but hard to approach. Speaking of which, he has not approached Lois either. He really should.

Only other person in his age bracket is Kara, and things are a bit awkward with his 'aunt'. So, what is left? He is going to try to find Karen's room to ask her a couple things. Although the general idea is they shouldn't leave the cargo bay, truth is he heard no rules stated. Maybe he was distracted by Maxima's presence and he failed to read the small print. Whatever.

Conner went searching. And he is still wandering the cruiser corridors.

Maxima has posed:
And there are many corridors indeed, many many corridors and deck levels. The Almeracian captial ship can carry an entire regiment of soldiers should the situation call for it, invading a new planet for example. Currently they are empty and the ship is uncrewed but there are still thousands of rooms spread across multiple levels and well it is very easy to get turned around in the unfamiliar hallways.

Meanwhile on the command deck.

<<Lady Maxima,>> comes the slightly feminine mechanical voice of the computer. <<One of the Kryptonians has left the cargo bay, erratic movements without clear destination indicate an 86% probability he either does not know where he is going or has lost his way.>>

Maxima frowns for a moment, her thoughts on how to handle the upcoming 'Oa situation' interrupted. Though it seems she is always willing to make time for Kryptonians, at the very least she seems to hold them in higher regard than most lifeforms. "I will handle it." She informs the computer without actually moving.

Elsewhere in the ship another Maxima boards one of the lifts descending several levels to one of the crew decks. It is not hard for her to zero in on her quarry, if she wanted to Maxima could track everyone on the ship by their mental presences, but most of the time there is simply no need to expend the effort since the computer can do that for her.

In the hallway that Conner has been walking down, a lift entrance opens with a *fwoosh* sound behind him and out steps Maxima. "Are you lost?"

Conner Kent has posed:
Conner hears that lift (maybe it is a turbolift?) coming. His enhanced senses are still working despite the days without a yellow sun since he has not used his powers much since they left Earth. The young man is pretty much waiting for Maxima when the elevator door opens.

Is he lost? That is pretty direct.

"Oh, hello," he offers the woman a smile. "I am still in the Almerician cruiser, right? So, technically I am not lost. But it is taking me a while to reach Power Girl's cabin. Not that I am in a hurry. The spaceship is too interesting to go looking with super-speed or anything, anyway."

Maxima has posed:
Maxima nods her slowly as she regards Conner curiously. "I see, it is true you are still within the confines of the cruiser." Earth logic can be strange to her, or maybe just 'relaxed' logic. The Space Princess doesn't seem to do a whole lot of that. Calling her a 'Type A' personality would be an understatement, though a lot of it also seems to stem from the weight of obligation that she feels to her people.

"Power Girl's cabin is two levels up on the officer's deck." She pauses for a moment, "It is a nice ship isn't it? Honestly I do not understand how so many of these 'Guardians' manage to share that tiny ship and what does it say about the standards of this galaxy?" One can almost feel the distaste dripping from her words as she describes the Milano.

Conner Kent has posed:
"To be honest I don't know enough about spaceships to have an opinion," replies Conner. He does think he Milano is too small for how many people are living inside right now. But that is also because some of the crew tend to be kind of loud. Noisy neighbours are bad when one has super-hearing.

"I heard the Milano is built for speed. I suppose comfort was not a priority," he adds with a shrug. "Your ship, on the other hand, seems to have been build to carry a small army," yes, he noticed a few things. "But it also looks like you are alone."

Maxima has posed:
"Yes, I am alone." Maxima agrees. "Save for my simulacra and the computer. I alone was deemed more than sufficient for this mission. Normally it would not have even fallen to one of my power, but I insisted. I am not going to bring a full compliment of warriors simply to sit around bored on a cloaked ship in orbit for a month, let alone bored on the surface. The goal was not invasion." She shrugs, "Though even if it was this vessel has more than enough firepower even without a full compliment of soldiers. The vessel is also completely automated, the onboard intelligence and robotic maintenance can handle all of the essential tasks, so I have little need of a crew unless the mission calls for one."

After a moment she adds "The Milano is a Ravager vessel, it is a ship built for piracy and quick getaways, comparing it to a capital ship is like... what is your Earth expression Scott Lang said the other day, apples and oranges?"

Conner Kent has posed:
Oh, piracy? That is cool. Wait! Probably not something Superman would think is cool. Then again the Guardians are not Ravagers, so maybe they captured the ship? He will have to ask. Connect stands silent for a few seconds, thinking.

"That is the right use for the expression," he confirms. "What are simulacra?" He asks. "Also, aren't you bored yourself?"

Maxima has posed:
Maxima seems pleased that she used the correct Earth expression. Much of her knowledge of languages is taken from the minds of those around her but idioms that require great cultural understanding still tend to puzzle her. "Simulacra are stable energy constructs, a double of yourself created with a simulacrum apparatus that can be controlled through telepathy or operate autonomously based on the perameters of your personality if need be. They are very useful if you need to be in two places at the same time, or for boring court functions that could put a slargbeast to sleep." There is a pause before she remembers he may not be familiar with space fauna and adds. "Those don't sleep."

"Boredom?" She turns over last question in her mind repeating it out loud. "I usually occupy by time training or learning new things. It is not usually a big issue with how fast this ship is, it is capable of traveling between galaxies. Oa will not be much longer."

Conner Kent has posed:
Conner tilts his head, studying Maxima for a few seconds to try to figure out if she is the real one or a simulacra. Probably scanning her with tactile telepathy would be rude or something (tempting, too) so... he has no idea.

"Well, doing those things with company is generally more fun," comments Conner. "At least for me. And you are pretty close friend of Kara's, right?"

Maxima has posed:
Maxima nods her head slowly at Conner's statement, "Yes, Kara helped me at every turn on my mission on Earth and showed herself to be someone I can call ..a friend." One really has to wonder at the sort of childhood Maxima had, fun and friends do not seem to be among her primary experiences so much as war and rulership.

"Perhaps you are right," She concedes, "it has been interesting having others on the ship. I was not expecting the robot girl and the tree king Groot to wage a Trial of Ownership the other day, although from the way she destroyed the plant immediately it may have been a Trial of Injustice instead, the line can be a thin one."

Conner Kent has posed:
"A... trial?" Conner smiles faintly. "Nah, nothing that formal. As I understood it is just her sister is allergic to that kind of plant. And I think she had already demanded Groot to stop trying to grow it, he didn't listen," he frowns slightly. "And some anger issues." Beat. "Cocoa trees are too large for the Milano, anyway. Did you try chocolate when you were on Earth? I wonder if Groot was trying some side-business, I bet it would be a popular in many planets."

Maxima has posed:
Maxima peers at Conner for a moment like how can he not know this, but then legal codes are one place her society and Earth have the most significant variances, "Yes, a trial, a battle to settle a dispute between warriors. Do humans not practice Trial by Combat to settle their differences..?"

She stops, "Cocoa? Chocolate? No I do not believe I am familiar. It was not among the dishes I tried during my stay in Atlantis."

Conner Kent has posed:
"Not for the last few centuries," replies Conner. Then amends. "Well, actually duels were still fairly common less than two centuries ago, if not strictly legal in most countries." He considers Maxima for a few seconds before adding some more.

"Cultural matters are usually spiny and Earth has a lot of different ones, you know? Globalization is happening but won't consolidate for a few generations. But most Earth cultures no longer believe the strongest, most skilled warrior, or the guy paying the best warrior to fight for him, is always right. Justice is governed by laws and specialists called judges are in charge of interpreting laws. Disputes are arbitrated in courts, not the duelling arena."

Then he grins. "Except disputes among super-humans are too often solved by battle. But that is not exactly the same. Super-powered crime-fighters will oppose criminals the regular law-enforcement can't handle. I pretty sure you saw that kind of thing a few times, back on Earth."

But not chocolate. Mental note: tell Kara.

Maxima has posed:
"Paying someone to fight for you?" Maxima seems nigh offended just by the very concept. "Almerac has such laws and arbiters, largely for the lower castes. They are irrelevant for the Warrior caste for whom the system of Trials is all. In the end if you lack power, you cannot enforce your will regardless. The words of a judge are meaningless if those words cannot be enforced. Almeracian society would never tolerate a spineless weakling who tried to pay another to fight for them. This is why the merchants are the lowest of the castes, they contribute little while attempting to profit off the labors of others. It is natural for the strongest warriors to rule for they are the ones capable of opposing the strongest threats and maintaining order. Earth will come to see this in time, the Almeracian Blood Houses have stood for more than 10,000 of your Earth years."

Conner Kent has posed:
"Maybe," admits Conner. "With the rise of the mutant race it is very possible in a few centuries everyone on Earth will have great powers. But I think the idea the majority of the population should decide the law and a nation's fate has some merit. And although some individuals are stronger than average, no one is as strong as all the others fighting together. It is also a system crafted after many negative experiences with autocrats in Earth history. Perhaps in Almerac your leaders have always been exemplars of justice and virtue."

Maxima has posed:
"I have heard of these mutants." Maxima says looking thoughtful, "For a backwater world beyond the edges of civilized space Earth seems to have a fascinating degree of genetic diversity. Were it not so far afield it probably would have been conquered long ago." She says casually as if this is a sort of matter of fact thing, worlds get conquered that's just the way it is.

"That is why armies exist Conner, the strongest rises to be leader, the others follow. If everyone were to decide for themselves it would be anarchy." It would seem Maxima subscribes to the philosophy of the enlightened warrior dictator, she likely would have gotten on famously with the likes of Gilgamesh. "There will always be bad examples, but then those beneath them simply band together to overthrow them. Strength is a vehicle to leadership Conner, it is a means to back up one's will, but strength alone is not enough to rule."

Conner Kent has posed:
Conner smirks, "I think it has been attempted many times. But even before meta-humans became plentiful, there were many sorcerers and demi-gods and a few secret cities of super-humans. Oh, and the Martians protected the whole Solar System."

He shakes his head. "You know, I don't think I know enough about politics and sociology to defend the democracy as a political system from a princess that has been told about the advantages of monarchy all her life. Also, I am a bit sick of how many corrupt politicians we have, and how the wealthy control the communication systems to convince the people to vote against their best interests. I think our democracies needs to be improved or it is going to become oligarchies ruled by the wealthy."

And also he has only so much politics he can talk about before being bored out of his mind. "Say, those cooking devices of your starship... can they duplicate foodstuffs?"

Maxima has posed:
Maxima listens with a bemused expression as in her mind Conner is only proving her points as he cites the failings of Democracy. "This is why Merchants must be kept to the lowest caste otherwise they will simply attempt to buy everything including power. This is also why commerce should be kept to confined to trade between empires. It does help when any of the Warrior Caste can simply issue a Trial of Ownership against an upstart merchant and take all of their excess resources. But Almeracian citizenry have their needs taken care of according to their station and merit. No one goes hungry. Earth's history is still young, as Kara has told me they are still fragmented into multiple states, experimenting with various systems. In time they will come to the same conclusion as all the great nations of space or be swept up by one of them."

When Conner changes the subject she laughs for a moment before nodding, "Yes, the matter fabricator can produce just about anything." Yes, her ship has Star Trek replicators.

Conner Kent has posed:
"Cool," decides Conner, forgetting about politics for now. "I am going to see if Groot managed to hide a cocoa bean or two. It is almost a crime you were on Earth for months and never tasted chocolate." That is, if he manages to return to the Milano.

"That computer you talk sometimes, would it give me directions if I ask it?" Inquires the young man. "It would save me some time."

Maxima has posed:
"It will if I tell it to." Maxima notes, before raising her chin in the manner people do when speaking to disembodied voices. "Computer assist Conner in finding his way to Power Girl's quarters on the officer's deck and then back to the cargo bay where the Milano is being stored. Also assist him in the reproduction of this cocoa if he is able to find what he is looking for."

<<Yes, Princess.>> Answers the slightly feminine mechanical sounding voice. <<It will be done.>>

"The computer will help you." She informs Conner looking back in his direction again, as if he wasn't just party to the entire exchange.

Conner Kent has posed:
"Thanks. Ah, my Kryptonian name is Kon-El," offers Conner. "I don't use it much, but I suppose for this trip I should," he heads back the way he came. "I hope to see you later, princess. Farewell," pause, "computer, which is the fastest way back to the Milano? By the way, do you have a name other than 'computer'?"

Maxima has posed:
Maxima nods her head, "Very well Kon-El. I hope your trek is a fortuitous one." And herself turns back the way she came towards that lift.

When Conner asks the computer for directions a pattern of lights along the floor begins to light up. <<Follow the illuminated guide markers, they will lead you to your desired destination.>> The computer replies. Followed by, <<You may address me as computer, that is my core function and reason for being, to assist the commander of this vessel and authorized officers, as well as those they designate.>> Guess the answer is no. For now at least.