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A gapfiller for Quarantine; Rimmer studies the Space Corps Directives. Slightly slashy.
Whoever had organized the rulebook was a person after Rimmer's own heart. They were not organized by Directive number, which was simply the date of their creation (although an index did cross-reference them). They were organized into sections of use, with a warning on the foreword that directives that fit into more than one section would be listed multiple times. The headings, clearly stated in a startlingly simple Table Of Contents, were:
Sexual Deviance (which was subsectioned into Chastisement and Encouragement)
Matters of Importance (the smallest chapter, by far).
The book proved its worth in the first section, as Rimmer found a Directive that turned his attempt to get a hologrammatic notepad from Holly into a one-sentence order rather than a three-hour harangue. A very evil grin spread across his face as he started to take notes on the Irritations section.
Rimmer retired from the Quarantine Observation Room feeling better than he had felt in years. The look on Lister's face was one to file away in his memory and treasure for years to come. The Irritations chapter had obligingly provided him with every facet of Quarantine, and how they could be abused to maximize the discomfort of the detainees. Rimmer would check back on them tomorrow, and see how buddy-buddy they were /then/! His lip twisted.
He marched off to the drive room and sat down to read further in the book. Holly narrowed her eyes at him, laconically speculated on his heritage in a way he airily informed her was verifiably untrue, and disappeared. Rimmer scanned the Manipulation section, but he could not deny his own curiosity about the Sexual Deviance chapter. The subsection of Chastisement, he discovered, was further broken down; the Sexual Deviance chapter appeared to be the most meticulously organized. He could not resist! Sex and organization were the two things in the world that appealed to him most, even if he had only been successful at the latter to date.
The Equipment sub-subsection turned out to be far less interesting than he had hoped. It dealt with the minutiae of such things as women's exercise equipment, shower drains in the men's washroom, and the mandated thread count for towels to be used for buttock-flicking. The next sub-subsection was titled Relations Between Superiors and Inferiors, and Rimmer started to read it with interest. The interest slowly turned to horror, however, and Rimmer's jaw started to drop as each directive made one thing clearer and clearer.
He was in big trouble.
Space Corps Directive 986534: A superior may not chose a vantage from which to watch the actions of an inferior on the basis of the provocativeness of the view. If a superior should find him or herself, by accident, in a vantage affording a provocative view of an inferior, the superior is required to either reassign his or her position, or engage immediately in thoughts incompatible with sexual urges (e.g. own parents in bed, tax audits, operas by Puccini, or the President of the United States).
Space Corps Directive 88/bg/907: A superior may not require an inferior to bend to fetch any object from a height of below the waist or lower more than five times on a given shift. If it is necessary for an object to be retrieved from such a height more than five times on a given shift, the skutters must be enlisted.
Space Corps Directive 437: A superior may not masturbate to thoughts of an inferior more than three times in a given month. If a superior is made erect or otherwise sexually stimulated by an inferior more than three times in a given month, the superior is required to move his thoughts to a more acceptable source of excitement for a duration of not fewer than five minutes before commencing masturbation.
Space Corps Directive 98642: A superior may not sabotage the sexual relationships of an inferior by any of the following means: blackmail, harassment, character defamation, the use of party noisemakers at inappropriate times, spiking the inferior's drinks with hallucinogenic compounds, or the use of itching powder in the inferior's condom supply. Seduction of either the inferior or the inferior's interest is considered acceptable sabotage as long as it does not violate any other Space Corps Directives.
The penalties! Rimmer's mouth ran dry. Demotion, loss of vacation and pay, public humiliation - castration! Rimmer reread that section, horrified, and breathed a deep sigh of relief that he had merely misread 'castigation.' The penalties were plenty horrific even without the specter of testicular removal, however, and Rimmer desperately read through the rest of the sub-subsection. Blast it all, there must be a way out for him!
Finally, he came to a directive that slowed the frantic whap-thum of his simulated heart and eased the simulated terror that was choking his computer-generated throat.
Space Corps Directive 982416/tg6: A superior found in violation of Sexual Deviance directives shall be held unaccountable for his actions if it can be shown that the actions of the inferior in question would be held, by a reasonable and disinterested party, to be intentionally sexually provocative.
That was it. That must be it. Lister had been doing it on purpose, he knew it. He had waggled his bottom provocatively at Rimmer, every shift. He had sucked on that cigarette a time or two while meeting Rimmer's eyes. He would watch Rimmer exercise from that top bunk - a leer, Rimmer was sure! Yes, there was no way that Rimmer was responsible for his little fantasies about bending Lister over the nav-comp and... erm. Well. Not his fault.
Rimmer closed the book with a sigh of relief. He decided to have a good holo-nap before checking in on the goits again. He was feeling rather tired, for some odd reason. He caught his reflection in the shiny edge of a console, and wondered absently how he would look in pigtails.