JANE IN SPACE
Miss Polly Connor
Chapter 5 – Visitors From A Time Long Past
But the big boss man — soft-bodied and diminutive, his handsome head of hair re-cloned a dozen times from his own follicles — had just shaken his head.
“Doesn’t have the same effect,” he’d assured Jon dismissively. “It’s the act of creation — apparently — and not just the end product, that soothes these hulking brutes of miners. Every community in need of a minstrel, that’s the thinking. Or a jester, a fool. Plus, we got the job lot from the Shellcrust nabobs, now the empire’s crumbling. Going cheap, what with all these expensive little rebel wars sucking up cash-flow for ’em.”
“You couldn’t just bring in — well — some live artists, musicians and suchlike, from around the Federation?” The Captain was a little hornswoggled. Something about the whole idea made him uneasy. Let alone the fact that his little transport inter-satellite shuttle was scarcely built to house guests in the sheer quantity the VP was proposing. And still less inanimate ones.
The VP had only made a little pfft sound, that didn’t translate well through the warpular connection. “Know what that would cost? Besides. This product is the genuine article. Apparently. Never heard of any of ’em myself – I like the contemporary style, personally. Bit of go in it. But all apparently highly thought-of on old Terra. Fifteen standardized Terra-gyros ago, the Shellcrust Research Institute — this was before time-loops were outlawed except in time of war — swooped in and nabbed all of ’em shortly after death — corporeal replacements installed, of course, no historical bloopers – and re-animated ’em. Before dumping ’em into cryostasis.”
“Then a quarter-gyro later, time-slips and non-consensual cryostasis…” the Captain began, understanding now.
“Were made illegal. Throughout the Federation,” the VP had agreed. “Awkward. And potentially costly. However, it’s all been run past the higher-ups and legislative bodies, special dispensation granted… And there you go.”