I'd Do Me

By Richard Jasper

Lt. Frank Nerva was a handsome 30 year old, medium height and with a powerful, beefy build. Because he'd grown up in the Naderite Church on Phyllida Prime, he was self-consciously NOT modified, as many another young man his age might have been. At a shade under two meters and a shade over 100 kg., he was definitely on the upper end of "natural," and therein perhaps lay his problem.

What problem was that, you might ask? How many problems could a 23rd Century lieutenant on a Federation starship possibly face, other than occasional incursions by the Borg?

As it turns out, Lt. Nerva's problem was age old:

He couldn't get laid.

Not that there were plenty of attractive prospects, even if you eliminated the 50% of the population (female, that is) that held no sexual interest for the lieutenant. The starship's adult MALE population was numerous and they were uniformly handsome and well-built. Nerva's build was not uncommon although among the unmodified there was a definite preference for the sleek, well-muscled physique typical of 20th century male dancers and swimmers. Likewise, the crew included a significant number of modified males, several of whom were easily twice Nerva's size and that didn't include Cmdr. Hqratizk, a Belorean standing 2.5 meters tall and reputedly weighing nearly 400 kg.

No, the problem was that even with a gay male population numbering nearly 500 (and that didn't include the 30% of the male crew who were practicing bisexuals) Nerva was overwhelmingly attracted to guys like himself, that is, BIG but natural.

"The thing of it is," Nerva thought to himself, for roughly the ten thousandth time, "is that they're not attracted to ME."

Nerva got plenty of attention from the smaller natural guys, and there were plenty of them. Fellas like Ensign DiMarco, a hot hairy Italian stud who was a good 10 centimeters shorter and 30 kg. lighter than Nerva. They had a great time, especially since DiMarco made Nerva feel like HE was modified in comparison.

But the fellas like Jerzy Yamoto or Bridig Kfarin, both of whom were for all intents and purposes twins of Nerva when it came to their builds, could care less.

Kfarin, a big, blonde bald boy from Tijdskarg, was all about the little ones. Hell, he was naturally big (Tijdskarg's gravity was 1.3 times that of Earth normal) and he self-consciously worked NOT to get any bigger. If he'd given more than passing attention to the strength machines he would have been nearly as big as the smaller of the modified men. He was, in the words of the physiologists, a double-plus alpha natural.

Yamoto, by comparison, had worked his butt off to get as big as he was - and he was forever toying with the question of whether to undergo the mods. Like Frank, Yamoto had grown up a Naderite (but from Polyphema, not Phyllida, and everyone knew the Polyphemans were notorious backsliders.) He was obsessed with the mod guys and for whatever reason he had a way with them. There were rumors that he'd even had a romp or two with Cmdr. Hqratizk, which pretty much defied comprehension since Beloreans were reputedly even better endowed than they were better built.

It made Frank sweat thinking about it.

Frank's duties included occasional tours managing transporter operations, usually on the "late" shift, when traffic was virtually nonexistent. He made the best of it by learning absolutely everything there was to know about the device, despite the fact that his real interest was Diaspora Cultures (the term used for the development of human civilizations on planets outside the Solar System.)

One night, drowsing over "Transporter Malfunctions of the Late 22nd Century," Nerva came across a description that caused him to sit bolt upright:

"There have been any number of occasions in which the transporter reassembled not one but two copies of the original individual. The first and most notorious of these incidents occurred on the USS Enterprise and involved, to no great surprise, Captain James Tiberius Kirk. The interstellar storm that caused Kirk's bifurcation also rendered unconscious the transporter crew, so it was only after many hours - and many strange events - that Kirk's lieutenants discerned that they were dealing not with one but TWO iterations of their commanding officer. The infamous DeDupe program (devised by a librarian at Caltech Marsopolis) has virtually eliminated this problem but occasionally even it misfires; fortunately, the DeDupe-Oops Vigilance subroutine has spotted the few errors that have occurred as they have occurred."

Nerva's mouth hung open as he contemplated the possibilities.

"I'd do me!" •

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