Wesley Crusher, acting ensign of the starship Enterprise NCC-1701-D, opened his eyes to complete darkness. "Computer, lights!" Obediently, the lights turned on. Then turned off again. "Computer, lights!" As the lights flickered, and slowly turned on, Wesley muttered various curses under his breath. It was going to be one of those days.

As the lights finally decided to turn on completely, Wesley jumped out of his bed, and managed to get all the way to the wardrobe before they failed again. "Oh, DAMNIT!" He winced, even as he said it.

"Wesley! Watch your language!" Beverly Crusher's voice echoed through his room.

"Sorry mom. The lights keep flickering out, and I just managed to trip over. I don't actually know what I just tripped over. Probably a book."

"That'll teach you to keep your room tidy. And it's not actually that dark, once your eyes get used to it. Want something to drink?"

"If you don't mind." Wesley's eyes had adjusted to the darkness by now, and he could make out the faint outline of his wardrobe in the star-lit gloom. He reached for the door, then as his hand hit the door with a rather audible crack, realised that the lack of light was messing with his perception. "Stupid, useless lights. We can make a working starship, but we can't manage to create a light that actually works!"

"Calm down, Wesley. I called Geordi, and he's coming to sort it out now." Beverly came out through her own quarters, clutching two cups of tea, one already half-empty.

"You called Geordi? For a lightbulb?!" Wesley was rather upset at this. After all, Geordi was the chief of engineering. He didn't usually bother with such trivial matters as lightbulbs.

"Wesley, he offered to help. Apparently he was bored. So no need to get upset!" She handed Wesley his tea, and smiled. "This is probably the most exciting thing that's happened to him all week. You know yourself how boring it's been, patrolling always is."

= = = = Ten minutes later = = =

By now, Wesley had managed to get dressed, in the dark, and Beverly was muttering about "Stupid food dispenser, never works when you want it to."

A knock on the door, and both Crushers called "Come in", then grinned at each other. They weren't used to being in their quarters at the same time, so things were usually done twice.

Geordi entered. "Sorry about this. You're the only quarter to be affected."

"Affected by what?" Beverly was curious.

"We decided to have a game of poker on the bridge. The bet was that the winner and the loser had to climb through the longest tunnel in the ship in under five minutes, at the same time."

"Who were the winner and the loser?"

"The captain won, and I lost. We, er, managed to get stuck. In our bid for freedom, we knocked out the circuitry for this level. Only a small part, but it meant that at least one set of quarters would have a problem with their lights and food dispenser. Sorry."

Beverly laughed. "So how come the captain was involved?"

"I dared him. Then he beat me by the biggest margin I have ever seen anyone be beaten. Never again will I challenge his mastery of poker." Geordi sighed in pretend sorrow.

Wesley joined his mother in her laughter. "As a hint? Never, ever challenge the captain to poker. He can beat me, and I was a champion at it, back on Earth."

Geordi smiled wryly. "I think I need to take some lessons. Maybe I should watch you sometime."

Beverly interrupted. "Before we start on poker lessons, can you fix the lights? Because I have to be on duty in ten minutes, and if you can't, I'll have to get changed in the dark."

"It'll have to be the dark, I'm afraid. We managed to bust it entirely." Geordi, obviously embarrassed, turned slightly red, though you couldn't see it in the darkness.

"Oh, bother. Thanks, though. Now I have an excuse to be late." Beverly smiled. "Shoo. And I would recommend that you stay away from poker games for a while."

Geordi nodded. "Yes, I agree with you there," and left.

= = = Ten minutes and thirty seconds later = = =

Beverly rushed into the infirmary, breathing hard. "You're late," Her assistant commented, smiling slightly.

"Blame Geordi. Don't ask, it's a long story." Beverly bent over to catch her breath -it was a long way from her rooms to the medical office!

"Fine. We should be prepared for rather a lot of injuries today. The captains running another of those cursed sailing days. Remember last time?"

Beverly rolled her eyes. "Yes, all too well." There had been several broken fingers, a broken nose and two broken arms. However, most people had said it was fun- even those who had managed to break something!

"Oh well. Get the splints ready, and the hyposprays. Who knows what'll happen this time! With the Captain in charge, I'd be prepared for almost anything!"

= = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = Whee! How was that? Yeah, I know, a load of *%£t, but there you go. Don't bug me, I'm tired. I've had nine hours sleep in the last two days. Plus I have a cold. Plus I'm already being bullied at school. I am liable to cry.

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