It began as a rather quiet day on the bridge of the Enterprise. Captain Jean-Luc Picard sat quietly in his soft captain's chair as he felt the slight hum of the engines in the floor at his feet and listened to the almost-hypnotic sounds of the beeping of buttons all around him as his staff did menial tasks like checking the warp field, power efficiency, and life support other systems. He used this calm time of contemplation to think of Earth, of his home in France, of how it was Springtime back on his home planet and how the beautiful pussywillows must be blooming in his brother's garden.
"Number One," Picard said, turning to William T. Riker on his right, his bearded second-in-command, "don't you think pussywillows are lovely?"
Riker, who had been intently watching the stars streak by on the viewscreen, was only dimly aware of his captain's question. "What'd you say about Deanna?"
Commander Deanna Troi, the ship's counselor, sitting on Picard's left, glanced curiously at Riker.
"Pussywillows," Picard reiterated, "Don't you think they're lovely, especially this time of year?"
"Um, er, yeah," Riker replied, "I suppose." He was quite mystified at Picard's choice of a conversational subject.
"What is a... pussywillow?" Lt. Cmdr. Worf asked cautiously in his gruff voice. Picard turned around to see the tall Klingon security chief standing at his station behind him.
"It is a type of flower," Picard answered.
"Pussy Willow actually refers to two willow species: the Salix caprea (also known as Goat Willow), which is native to Europe, and Salix discolor, which is native to North America," said Lt. Cmdr. Data, the android, turning around from his station in front of Troi to face his trio of commanders. "The captain is probably most familiar with the Salix caprea..."
"Thank you, Mr. Data," Picard interrupted, holding his hand up. He was almost sorry he had brought pussywillows up.
"Aye, Sir," Data said before turning back around to finish his diagnostic of the waste disposal system.
A familiar rapid beeping stung the quiet air.
"Captain," Worf said excitedly, "we are being hailed. It appears to be just a subspace message."
"Might be a distress call," Riker mumbled, looking slightly alarmed.
"No, it is not a distress call," Worf said.
"Put it on screen, Mr. Worf," Picard commanded.
The streaking white stars in the inky blackness of space was replaced by a man in an orange suit with a wild hairdo.
"Do you have trouble boldy going where most men have gone before?" the man opened with, grinning at the bridge. "Have you not been able to set your phasers on stunning, release your photon torpedoes? Well we have the solution for you! We have cheap Viagra! Only ten bars of latinum per case if you...!"
"What the hell is this?!" Picard yelled.
Troi shot Riker a knowing, playful look. Riker looked nervously away from her.
"Sir, I... uh," Worf stammered.
"Shut it off and delete it!" Picard ordered.
"Aye, Sir!" Worf exclaimed. He hit a button and the man in the orange suit disappeared and the streaking stars returned.
"Do you realize what that was?" Riker mumbled to Picard.
"Yes, Number One," Picard replied, tugging firmly on his red and black uniform, "I haven't seen one in a very long time!"
"Sir, we have another message!" Worf declared. "This one is marked urgent!"
"Maybe this one's a distress call!" young Ensign Wesley Crusher offered from his station in front of Riker.
"Put it on screen," Picard said. An image of a big-eared male Ferengi blinked onto the view screen.
"This is a request for an URGENT BUSINESS RELATIONSHIP," he began, "First, I must solicit your strictest confidence in a TRANSACTION OF THIS MAGNITUDE. We are a TOP OFFICIAL of the FERENGI GOVERNMENT REVIEW PANEL interested in importing goods onto our planet which are currently TRAPPED ON RIGEL-3. IN ORDER TO COMMENCE THIS BUSINESS WE SOLICIT YOUR ASSISTANCE TO ENABLE US TO TRANSFER INTO YOUR ACCOUNT THE TRAPPED FUNDS..."
"Get this off of my view screen!" Picard ordered. The Ferengi quickly winked away.
"What is up with this?" Riker asked, wincing.
"I don't know, but we'd better get to the bottom of it," Picard said angrily. "Mr. Data, check our spam filter settings!"
"Sir, we are getting another message, text only," Worf declared. "'Cialus FREE holy botox quick shipment driving around labor taskfull fisticuffs abound in the beach...'"
"DELETE IT!" Picard exclaimed. "Data?"
"Our spam filters are the same as they always have been," Data said. "I have been analyzing these messages. They are sophisticated and have found a way to circumvent the settings. Apparently somehow the Enterprise's main space mail address has gotten on a list somehow."
"We had a meeting about this a month ago!" Picard said to the entire bridge. "Has everybody been careful with the subspace sites they've been visiting?"
Ensign Crusher slumped a little in his chair, his cheeks turning scarlet.
"Wesley, you're hiding something," the psychic Troi said firmly, looking at the back of his head.
"Mr. Crusher!" Picard said. "Is there something you're not telling us? Fess up!"
Wesley gulped as his throat started burning. "Uhh. Well, you see, there was this site that, uh, well, I just sorta came across it last night, it, uh, I wasn't looking for it or anything, it just, uh..."
"What was it, Ensign Crusher?!" Riker demanded.
"gww.HotNakedTeenageKlingonBabes.kl!" Crusher spit it out quickly.
The bridge grew uncomfortably quiet for a moment.
"Hot naked teenage Klingon babes, eh, Mr. Crusher?" Picard said, angering teeming below the surface of his skin.
Wesley swallowed hard; sweat began to bead on his forehead.
"Hot.." *beep beep* "..naked" *beep beep beep* "klingon.." *beep beep* "babes..."
"Mr. Worf!" Picard yelled. "WHAT ARE YOU DOING?!"
"Nuh-nuh-nuh-nothing, Sir!" Worf stammered quickly, jutting his body up erect. "Nothing at all!"
"I should call Dr. Crusher right now and ask her what she thinks of this," Riker said to Wesley, hovering his right hand near the communicator on his chest.
"Yes, what would your mother think of this?" Troi asked him pointedly.
"I wasn't surfing for hot naked Klingon babes!" Ensign Crusher whined. "I just sort of saw it and clicked on it on a whim!"
"Whims can sink starships!" Picard said.
"Sir," said Data, swiveling around, "may I point out that we are not on water--"
"Yes, yes, thank you Mr. Data!" Picard cut him off.
"Sir," Worf said in a concerned tone, "we have over two-hundred-fifty text and audio message waiting to be viewed. More Ferengis about a lottery, cheap drugs, and something about Bill Gates testing--"
"Delete them ALL, Mr. Worf!" Riker ordered. "Data, we've got to change those spam filters!"
"I am on it, Sir," Data said, beeping buttons on his console furiously. "I am isolating the particular block of SSPs that the message appear to be originating from and..."
"Just do it, Mr. Data!" Picard replied, "There's no need to explain it all. Just do it."
Just then Ensign Crusher's communicator beeped. His mother's voice blared from it. "Wesley! Subspace sites with nude teenage Klingon girls keep popping up on my screen at our quarters while I'm trying to access research on Starfleet's medical database! Do YOU know anything about this?!"
"Uhh, Mom, er." Wesley stammered, his face redder than it ever had been.
"Wesley Robert Crusher!" his mother's voice yelled. "After your shift you come down here and fix this!"
"Y-y-yes mom," Wesley whined pathetically.
"Sir, LaForge here!" said the voice of the ship's cheif engineer on Picard's communicator, "I'm getting a lot of messages down here from a, er, 'hotsexyKlingon777' saying 'ASL,' over and over again. I assume she's asking about our Astronomical Survey Link. Should I--?"
"Ignore them, LaForge!" Picard exclaimed. "And block all further communications from that person. That is all." He clicked his communicator off, not wanting to field any more questions on the matter.
"Sir!" said Ensign Smith from the console he was standing at near the back of the bridge. "A video popped up on my screen of... of..." He gulped, looking severely distressed. "Of... a young Klingon girl giving oral sex to a... a... Naussican!"
"Data, we have more problems than just spam," Riker said, getting up and going over to the android's console.
"I am currently fixing those problems, too, Commander," Data said, his cybernetic fingers zipping all over his console.
A window suddenly popped up on Wesley's console. "Uh, Sirs, is it technically kiddie porn if there's an orgy of Pixellians, since they all pretty much look like humanoid children?"
"That's a grey area I'd rather not explore," Picard declared.
"Sir, there are one thousand, five hundred and fifty-six more spam messages," Worf said. "Several of them say 'Resistance is pubile, you will be ASS-similated.'"
"Man they're limber!" Wesley said, still engrossed in the video playing out on his con station. "And I must say, the way Vulcans have anal sex, their positioning... it's, well... very logical."
Data suddenly stopped, looking perplexed at his screen. "Hm. I thought that Dr. Soong had programmed me to perform in every possible position and technique. Apparently that assumption was incorrect."
"Just FIX IT, Data!" Picard exclaimed, sounding exhausted.
With several dozen more bleeps and blips, Data announced that all the problems were indeed fixed. All the spam and pop-ups ceased shipwide. The entire crew breathed a sigh of relief. The crisis was over.
A few days later Riker found himself in sickbay, seeing Dr. Crusher for a rather unusual problem.
"You bought Viagra from the Felatians didn't you?" the red-haired doctor asked him accusingly. She was going over his gigantic erection with her medical tricorder.
"Yes," Riker grunted as he switched his sitting position slightly.
"Don't you know that we cured erectile dysfunction in the 22nd century?" she said. "And, plus, don't you know that Felatians have the biggest penises out of all the humanoids in this region of the galaxy?"
"No!" Riker said. "I thought it was the Klingons."
Dr. Crusher laughed. "No, on average they have the smallest. Why do you think they war and fight so much and have so much pent-up anger? You never figured they were overcompensating for something?"
"Wow," Riker said as Dr. Crusher injected something into his arm. "That puts a lot of things into perspective, Doctor."
"Certainly! Oh, and Will, don't ever buy anything from spam anymore. I don't care what all problems you're having with Troi, I don't wanna see you in here for this again."
"I'm not--!" but Riker knew she was right. He rolled his eyes and said "OoooooKay, Doc."
"That's a good boy," Dr. Crusher said, smiling at him. "You know, you could always get it up with me!"
"Shh!" Riker said, looking around nervously.