The following short-short story is basically for amusement value only. It tickled me to write it, and I hope that you’ll get a kick out of reading it, but don’t take it too seriously.



The watching Cardassians wondered why she so dreaded the imminent arrival of the Vulcans.

“Since you say that they can and will cure your annoying hiccups, you should welcome their well-timed approach,” commented Tain.

She observed the four Cardassians’ curiosity with dreary dread. “I don’t like their cure,” she complained, promptly punctuating her complaint with a prominent hic.

“Why not?” demanded Garak.

“I don’t think that I want to tell you,” she groaned miserably.

With a diabolical gleam in his eye, Damar teased, “We have ways of making you tell us.”

She groaned louder, and with a face etched in misery, turned away from them.

Dukat tried to appease her. “Damar was just joking. Your motivations are hardly valuable military secrets. But for that very reason, I don’t see why you mind telling us.”

“You’ll laugh at me!” But she turned to face them once again.

“We’re already doing that,” Tain observed pragmatically.

“You’d love the answer too much.”

“And you abhor the thought of pleasing us?” Garak guessed sardonically.

She hiccupped resoundingly, followed by, “Ohhh!” She leaned wearily on the counter behind her.

Damar shook his head. “Well, if you hate the cure so much, just refuse it; though I find that foolish, given the nuisance-value of your minor spasms.”

She shook her head sadly. “Spock and Sarek would just give me a lecture on how I must have the fortitude, or give in to the logic, or whatever; and they’d talk me to death until I gave in. Hic!”

Grinning playfully, Garak followed Damar’s earlier lead. “Tell us, or we’ll make you sorry.”

“Too late. I already am sorry. For mentioning the possible Vulcan cure at all. Though, as soon as they get here and hear me hiccupping away, they’ll automatically assume that they should go for it, and you’ll find out what the cure is, and why it bothers me, anyway. Hic! Damn!”

“You mammalians are certainly fraught with peculiar biological difficulties. We Cardassians do not get hiccups,” Dukat remarked.

“Bully for you.”

“Interesting expression. And undoubtedly slang. We have no literal equivalent. But given the way that our universal translators rendered what you just said, I remind you that we could indeed try bullying to make you tell us. Not that we care all that much about the answer, but we Cardassians just don’t like having our requests refused,” Dukat semi-seriously warned.

“You’re still just teasing me, right?”

Their expressions were not reassuring.

“Oh, okay, what the hell! Hic! I don’t like the Vulcan cure because it hurts!!”

They stared and then burst into laughter, Tain somewhat subdued, but the others more zestfully.

“Hic! Wonderful.” She sagged in despair.

To add to her distress and humiliation, in came the Vulcans. All of her predictions proceeded on schedule. She hiccupped; Spock approached; she resisted; he questioned; she explained. Spock and Sarek quirked a single brow each, and launched into their lecture; she surrendered.

With exaggerated fascination, the Cardassians watched the revelation of the Vulcan cure: a variation of the Vulcan nerve pinch, but not carried to the point of unconsciousness, and administered to both shoulders at once for long moments.*

The delighted reptilians watched her writhe slightly and wince and whimper. She suspected that at least part of their fascination was due to the glaring impossibility of ever performing such a procedure on Cardassian anatomy, as well as the reeling irony of a pacifistic Vulcan carrying out even a minor “torture” upon a human, regardless of altruistic purpose, and right in front of the notably sadistic Cardassians.

Her hiccups were cured very much sooner than the Cardassians’ amusement.





*This really is a cure for the hiccups. It truly is rather painful, but effective, and therefore worth it. It does not cause unconsciousness. That aspect of the Vulcan nerve pinch is absolutely fictional.


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