I came across the elevated tree grouping on a deer drive this past rifle season. It is now flagged on my navigational charts. I marked it not because of it’s unique location nestled amongst a large section of hardwoods, but because of my ‘first contact’ experience with a Romulan Buck.
He’s the new buck in town.
Unfortunately for me, my long range scanners needed some re-calibrating as I noisily made my way down the large hardwood hill towards the nebula. Our hound, of debatable ability, was ranging somewhere to the right of the unfamiliar anomaly and appeared to have no interest in its existence. To cover more ground, I thought it might be advantageous for me to explore and enter the heart of the evergreens. So, I changed my course and started moving towards the trees at approximately half impulse.
Long range sensors picked up nothing. Neither, did the hound.
Within seconds of entering the initial picket of thick tamarack branches, I heard the snap of twigs about 30 yards ahead of me. I could have reacted faster, but my hat and rifle were in the clutches of the various evergreen branches that surrounded me. In frustration, I managed to scan ahead of me (with my hat stuck in the tree behind me) and watched a thick main beam, and a brown deer flank, cloak into the depths of the organic nebula.
There was no time for a shot or even a look into my scope. Of course, it would have been pointless anyway. Cloaking devices always helped those pesky Romulans on TV.
The deer’s technology was so effective, that our hound barely whimpered when she scurried past his last known location. I don’t think she’s calibrated to pick-up tachyon emissions.
The thing that stands out to me is that this buck was quite content to stay bedded down in the middle of these out-of-place evergreens. He would not have moved if I had skirted around the dense ‘swath’ of land. When you do your own deer drives, make sure you find a way to enter the thick cover-even if it seems to small to be of any value.
Bring your tricorder or Starfleet Engineer.
*Photo: David McDougall