Log Entry 130309.52

I didn't sleep much at all last night. Not surprising really. The challenge is weighing heavily on my mind. How could I have let myself be drawn into a folly as grand as this? And what sort of handicap could possibly begin to even up the odds in a match between a fragile Human female and a robust, giant Klingon warrior?

In the end, I got up and researched it and what I found was quite interesting.

The challenge will follow the rules of T'Ker Chan. It sounds like a Klingon term but it's not. It actually comes from much further afield and refers to a sporting event where aliens of different species engage in combat. Due to their varying weights and sizes, each opponent is handicapped via a field (very much like the personal forcefields used by the Borg) so that they are equally matched with regard to weight and strength. The victor will thus be the competitor with the most ability.

Obviously, that is not going to save me. I have little expertise or experience in combat, so I needed to find out more about the challenge I had inadvertently made. For instance, who was my opponent?

It turns out his name is Urtok. He was a formidable Warrior with a long list of victories attached to his name, but is now a Master in hand-to-hand combat and teaches those arts at a Klingon training academy. His visit here is to exchange ideas and methods, and also to help expand the understanding between Humans and Klingons. I couldn't have picked a more formidable foe if I had tried.

As to the combat, there will be no weapons. It will be physical combat only by whatever means. All arts are legal: wrestling, kickboxing, martial arts. Teeth and claws, however, are banned.

Eventually, I crawled back into bed and finally nodded off about an hour before the alarm went off. I dressed, grabbed a bit of breakfast and then set off in search of Rutter. After all, he is my mentor.

I eventually found him in the library. I approached him quietly.

"Rutter, can I have a word please?" I whispered.

He looked up from his datapad and grinned wickedly at me.

"You've heard then," I said.

"Indeed, I have," he replied, relish rich in his voice.

I sat down opposite him.

"I need your help."

"You do?"

"Yes. I've checked your record and you are well skilled in hand-to-hand combat. Gold medallist three years running in jiu-jitsu and two silvers in judo."


"I need you to teach me some moves."

"What for?" he sounded sceptical.

"The challenge, of course!" I replied rather derisively.

His eyes boggled.

"You're not going to meet the challenge!" he exclaimed and was instantly hushed by the librarian. I leaned closer to him and whispered.

"I don't have a choice."

"You could decline to fight."

"Don't be stupid, Rutter. If I did that, I'd be a complete mockery. I'd be ridiculed by every Klingon alive and would be a liability on any mission involving Klingons. It would severely handicap my career."

He said nothing. He knew I was right, but he also knew what I was asking was completely irrational.

"Okay, so let's say I taught you a few moves. Do you really think you can learn enough about hand-to-hand combat in just a couple of days to beat this Urtok with his years of training and experience?"

I grinned triumphantly at him.

"Oh yes, because I have something he doesn't."

"Really? And what's that? Stupidity?"

"No. Guile."