Skip to main content
Topic: CHAPTER 01: Find Me Unafraid [0630 hrs.] (Read 9672 times) previous topic - next topic
0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Re: CHAPTER 01: Find Me Unafraid [0630 hrs.]

Reply #25
At Hayden's words Cinn let out a deep, rumbling chuckle, "Presumed dead by the Captain and crew perhaps but I did die out there."

He paused for a moment as he once again remembered that moment, his muscles flexed as he almost tried to stop himself from being pulled out of the ship in his memory, "I was spaced... I still remember the cold and the fading lights as I floated away from the ship.  The Prophets brought me back... but that's another story."  The fact she wasn't a Bajoran meant she probably wouldn't have the same reverence for what most people would call the 'Wormhole Aliens' and really right now he didn't want to discuss theology with a doctor he barely knew regarding a situation he could still barely get his own head around.

"When I woke up I was in a stasis pod, I'm not sure if it was my travel companion or another helping hand from the Prophets that meant it had malfunctioned but either way it had and I was definitely not dead anymore."

He looked at the slim figure standing beside him, his eyes trailing up her body to her face with her high cheekbones, where he met her brown eyes with his dark chocolate ones.  His voice, rumbling and soft asked gently with an amused smirk pulling at his lips, "So how does it look Doc? Will I live?"

Re: CHAPTER 01: Find Me Unafraid [0630 hrs.]

Reply #26
By that point, Deputy ThanIda zh'Wann had come to stand outside the forcefield, and with a quick command to the Brig Officer, it lowered for her. Arms folded but with a PADD in one hand, she stepped into the cell, silently watching Wenn Cinn and the Counsellor, the latter who seemed to just have scanned her former Chief with a medical tricorder. Ida had not heard Cinn's query to the human, so she walked up to them both with words of her own.

"Lor'Vela," she said with emotion, eyes moving over him - able too look upon the Ridge-nose up close for the first time since he returned, "you are wearing the same uniform as when you vanished through that shredded bulkhead. Same cuts and scrapes. I remember seeing that sleeve and shoulder snag and tear as we climbed the jefferies tubes between Decks 03 and 04. You were never fit to climb those. Even less so when the ship is under fire."

She had meant to ask questions. Explain the situation, yet seeing her old Chief and now knowing that it was no trick made her uncharacteristically sentimental. She cleared her throat, glancing in the Counsellor's direction before she addressed the things that might matter for Wenn Cinn. "I do not know what Dr. O'Connor has said yet, but I hope you understand that we have no alternative way to learn if you were truly you, and not the enemy. We have one of them locked up three cells down the hallway, and we have managed to device the crude test by scanning the enemy while she was stunned, seeing what the readings would look like if in that condition. I am, however, still sorry for shooting you, sir."

Her antennae rising, she realised that she was still emotional, even though her face betrayed little in that regard. She decided to stop talking for the time being, slowly withdrawing to the other side of the room to sit on the bunk - hands clasped and leaning forward with her forearms on her knees. She did not want to interfere with the medical examination, even if she wanted to ask her own questions too. Glancing towards the human doctor in the room, she chose to wait in quietude, starting to fill out her report about the release of Wenn Cinn and the restoration of his Security Clearence.

Every once and a while, she glanced up - barely being able to credit her eyes when seeing him.

Re: CHAPTER 01: Find Me Unafraid [0630 hrs.]

Reply #27
Hayden was in the process of reviewing her scans when Cinn began to speak of his ordeal.  Out of respect for what he'd been through and the compelling nature of his words, Hayden made a point to look him in the eyes as he spoke, her scans once more momentarily forgotten.  While in therapist mode, she'd said words that had opened the proverbial flood gates for him, and it would rude, not to mention irresponsible of her not to use the opportunity to assess his credibility.

It took conscious effort for Hayden to keep her expression appropriate for the occasion.  She had to express enough concern not to seem cold but not so much emotion that her empathy could be used against her.  Hayden was becoming acutely aware of how her own emotions could work against her, and the last thing she wanted to do was let more people down.  Still, she was struck by how calm and matter of fact he was about the details of such a significant and surely traumatic event.  Hayden supposed what she was seeing was a product of the passage of time and his security officer's training.  Despite him knowing she was a therapist and physician by training, his just the facts accounting reflected either a shrewd calculation on his part or an avoidance of the emotion connected to the event.

If Hayden had to decide right in the moment, she'd report the latter.  O'Connor made a mental note to follow-up on that later.  Hayden added his name to her mental list, which honestly included every member of the crew thus far.  She looked down at her tricorder and was about to reply when she heard a voice.  Turning to see zhWann'Ida, Hayden was at first startled and then mildly irritated.  Cinn may have been a prisoner but he was still entitled to confidentiality during a medical or psychological exam.

Upon hearing the security officer confirm what she already believed and then apologize for her actions, Hayden couldn't be too upset.  If O'Connor had the opportunity to apologize to the people she'd harmed, wild horses couldn't keep her away.  Unfortunately, in the case of the crew she'd killed, that would never be possible.  Seeing the security officer move a discreet distance away, O'Connor focused fully on her scans for a final time.  Hayden looked up at him and with a wry smile, offered, "I see no medical concerns which need immediate attention.  I would, however, like to do a more thorough exam in the near future to see if we can get to the bottom of how you survived.  Also, it would not be unreasonable given what you've been through, to expect this is all going to hit you emotionally at some point.  Considering you're now in relative safety, I expect this to happen sooner rather than later.  I'd like to check in with you tomorrow as a precaution.  Deal?"

Hayden caught Ida's eye out of the corner of her own.  Now that she had joined Hayden, the counselor gathered she would not be handling any additional questioning alone.

Re: CHAPTER 01: Find Me Unafraid [0630 hrs.]

Reply #28
The voice that pulled his attention from that of the Doctor was certainly a welcome sound to hear. zh'Wann, his former deputy, had arrived to do her part of the job no doubt.  He watched as she eyed him up and down, inspecting him as though he was merely a spectre and she was waiting for him to fade once more into the ether.  The betrayal of her voice of her emotion at seeing him again gave him a warm glow.  It was good to know he'd been missed by someone at least, especially someone as close as he and Ida had been before the incident.

When she made mention of his uniform he chuckled, "They weren't considerate enough to put me in a dress uniform to bury me I'm afraid, Ida.  As for not fitting in the JTs I was always fit enough to climb in them, they weren't fit enough to accommodate me."

"Being stunned is the nicest thing that has happened to me for a while when you compare it to everything else that's happened.  I was grateful for the rest so no hard feelings.  I'm glad to know there's a test of some kind out there for those things," Cinn nodded with a tight-lipped smile, "Until I'm cleared for duty I'm not 'sir', I'm Cinn.  That's even if Jien'll let me have my old job back."

His attention went back to the Doctor as she spoke once more and his eyebrows rose a little at the idea that this would hit him emotionally at any stage.  He'd never been one for outbursts of emotion, dealing with things in his own way through prayer and meditation rather than venting to anyone else.  Faith had helped him through the Occupation and his faith had seen him brought back to the fight now, he would deal with his death and resurrection in the same way as he had dealt with all of the traumas he had faced before.

Still, this woman wanted to check in on him tomorrow to make sure that he was coping well.  If he had refused he knew it would mean more checks and sessions, even by agreeing that would probably happen to be fair so it was more than likely a no-win scenario.  The only no-win scenario was the scenario that involved a medical professional, they had sedatives and damned good aim.

Nodding he responded to her request, "Deal Doc.  Does that mean I can go?"

Re: CHAPTER 01: Find Me Unafraid [0630 hrs.]

Reply #29
When Cinn suggested that Captain Ives might not want him back in his old role as her superior officer, Ida could barely keep her face straight - containing the snort of laughter that threatened to escape her. She had a month's worth of experiences and unfortunate events to support her educated guess that their Commanding Officer would welcome Cinn back and run his - or her - Security Department even if he would be shrivelled corpse. With Ida's recent track record and the death of two successors, Ida would safely bet a fortune that the Chameloid would have Cinn back in office before the day was over.

She said nothing, however, just smiling knowingly while she filled out her report on her PADD. The Chief Counsellor was not done with the medical examination just yet, but after the initial good news that he was unaffected by his ordeal, Ida looked up when Dr. O'Connor spoke of Cinn's psychological fortitude - her midnight blue eyes moving between the two. Of course, the human would not wish for Ida to be present for that, and she cleared her throat in otherwise hidden chagrin that she had erred when walking in. At this point, a scheduled counselling session might have been for the best, but she had to interject when Cinn asked Lieutenant O'Connor if he was free to leave.

"Not quite yet, si-" said, Ida and caught herself, adhering to his ignorance with a wry amendment, "Cinn. I need to verify when and how you encountered Lieutenant Commander Trent aboard the USS Archeron first. The computer virus was his doing, as much has been made clear, so how did the two of you end up together? What made you trust a stranger when leaving the crippled ship? Even more relevant, why do you think he trusted you - dead as you had been up until that point?"

It was a simple matter of making sure their individual accounts added up, for what it was worth. Interrogation routine, truly, and not that effective either if they tried to hide something together since they could easily have had the time to get their stories straight beforehand. It was, however, effective to verify their individual accounts and confirm the truth in their claims beyond their obvious integrity as the physical beings they were. O'Connor's verification after they had been stunned lingered at the forefront of Ida's memory, and she still felt the immediate relief that Commander Wenn was who he claimed to be.

"Lastly," said Ida next, lowering her PADD - now sitting with one leg over the other, "you have claimed your Bajoran deities - the Prophets - brought you back. If it is not too personal, I would like to put your experiences to the official record as well."

She stood up and took a few steps through the cell, explaining her reasoning. "Individual accounts have varied greatly in regard to these beings, and while Counsellor O'Connor and you may delve into personal details at a later time, the overall experience should be on official record. If nothing else, to help alleviate suspicions among the people still remembering you dying, Cinn."

Coming to a stop before the mountain of a Bajoran, Ida let her hand with the PADD drop to her side. "By Lor'Vela, I would like to know myself too. How can something like this happen?" She gestured with her free hand as she spoke, her antennae rising in consternation. "Starfleet fail to provide a factual, scientific explanation for what has happened to you, and I know that Andorian annals holds no reference to the like, so are we now supposed to count you as immortal for the time being, until the time these Prophets do not need you to be alive any more?"

If she were to be honest to herself, she very much hoped so, and that they would never find him irrelevant.

Re: CHAPTER 01: Find Me Unafraid [0630 hrs.]

Reply #30
Cinn was unsurprised that the meeting was not yet over and listened to Ida's questions.  Nodding as she finished he took a breath and began the report of his escape from the ship he had risen from the dead in.

"I woke up in a stasis pod and pushed it open to find the sickbay in total darkness.  I came across a Doctor who gave me information on where I was and what the ship was planning to do.  Gathering the necessary information I knocked the Doctor out and headed to the doors to the corridor.  Once there the gravity turned off and as I pulled myself out into the corridor I saw a male figure floating swiftly past.  I did not know it at the time but from the clothing the figure wore I am now able to identify this figure was Trent. 

I headed to the shuttlebay as fast as the lack of gravity would allow, avoiding contact with the crew to maintain my anonymity.  Upon entering I retrieved a phaser from the panel closest and headed towards the nearest shuttle.  When I saw the doors were already open I proceeded with caution.  The doors closed moments after I boarded and as I moved to the front of the shuttle I made contact with the pilot - Trent.  After a brief stand-off while we exchanged credentials he continued to pilot the shuttle and we returned to the Theurgy.

His reasoning for trusting me was that as I had been dead it would have made no sense for the enemy to have used me being as it would have been all too obvious.  My reason for trusting him was his witnessing and then hearing his confession of what he did to the fleet out there along with gut instinct about his motives."

He took another deep breath, finished with his report, concise and to the point, almost exactly what he would have written had he had the chance to do so.  He moved on to the second part of the story, the prequel to waking up on the Archeron, as Ida had requested.

"It is extremely personal but I understand your desire to have it recorded.  A lot of what went on is something I am not ready to discuss with anyone but they weren't very candid.  What they kept saying was 'The Wenn is of the Theurgy', they were not pleased that my linear existence had been terminated and they rectified the problem.  That's when I woke up in the stasis pod."

He looked up at Ida, "I don't think I'm immortal, just that the Prophets weren't happy with the timing or method of my death.  Whatever they have seen, they want me to be around for it.  It doesn't mean they'll do the same again.  Maybe if I knew what had happened since I died I might be able to make sense of some of it.  It can wait for now, until I find out what is going to happen to me."

Re: CHAPTER 01: Find Me Unafraid [0630 hrs.]

Reply #31
Her official business concluded, Hayden stood and stepped back, emotionally and intellectually torn as to what to do next.  She wanted to hear and absorb Cinn's official account as well, and on a professional level, she considered the advantages to doing so.  She was in a unique position to assess whether the details seemed plausible, and indeed whether there was in fact trauma to be addressed in the future.  In addition, there might be distinct medical information she needed to know or at least needed to pass along to those who needed to know. She had every faith in Ida to fulfill her obligations as a security officer, but the medical significance of certain things might prove to be of little note to her.

However, there were several disadvantages to sticking around, not the least of which was the fact that several patients required medical and emotional support back in sickbay.  To remain in the brig to essentially hear the man's war stories when he had agreed to see her later only seemed to compound the feelings of incompetence Hayden had been grappling with of late.  O'Connor also got the distinct impression she would be interfering with the reunion of two old friends, and the last thing she wanted was to feel like a third wheel.  Intellectually, there was also the matter of wanting to distance herself from anything that resembled too much of an official interrogation, as this was not her primary role, and this could certainly confuse the therapeutic rapport she was attempting to build.  Besides, she could always review the official statement later.

O'Connor's decision made, she offered a polite nod to Cinn and Ida before the former could launch into his account.  "Since my official business is concluded, I'll leave you two to your discussion.  I expect you in my office no later than end of day tomorrow," she added to the resurrected security officer.  With that, she took her leave and caught up with the female medical officer who had entered the other cell as she was attending to Cinn.

As she approached, Hayden could see the officer was decidedly female and Vulcan.  "Hello.  I don't believe we've met.  I'm Dr. Hayden O'Connor, Chief Counselor."

Re: CHAPTER 01: Find Me Unafraid [0630 hrs.]

Reply #32
Maya turned her head in Hayden's direction and stared with large hazel eyes as she allowed the counselor to catch up.  She believed that this let the person addressing her know that she was paying attention, but in reality just made her look strange.  "Greetings," she nodded by tilting her head to one side.  "I'm Doctor Maya, the ship's neurologist.  Will you be staying aboard the Theurgy long?"

The little neurologist studied the statuesque brunette who had been in Wenn Cinn's cell.  Standing up, the woman was six inches taller than the slightly-built Vulcan, with a slender athletic build that many would find aesthetically pleasing.  Hayden O'Connor's symmetrical features, clear skin and soft pouty lips would be considered attractive if not alluring to a human or any member of a similar species. 

It wasn't Hayden O'Connor's appearance that had Maya's attention, so much as her body language.   Maya's nonverbal communication skills had always been abysmal.  Since the time traveling ensign was telepathic, she instinctively assumed everybody else was too and would interpret the little Vulcan's words the way they were intended.  Mister Trent's reaction to her comments indicated that this wasn't the case, although his negative reaction might have been influenced by being captured and placed in the brig where he was mistreated.  It seemed highly unlikely that Mister Trent would accept the truth from anyone aboard this ship.

Doctor O'Connor however was a professional therapist.  If anyone knew how to engender trust and put people at ease it would be her.  This was an opportunity the little ensign wasn't going to pass up.

Re: CHAPTER 01: Find Me Unafraid [0630 hrs.]

Reply #33
While Cinn had spoken, Ida had been making notes on her PADD, glancing up now and then to meet her former Chief's eye when he spoke of how he had been resurrected. While there was little detail, there was enough said to put on record, so Ida chose to not pry - respecting the Bajoran's privacy in the matter. In a way, it was both oddly reassuring and clearly unfortunate that Cinn said he did not believe himself immortal. After so many dead in Starfleet Security, not even listing the names of the whole team that Ensign Acreth had killed on the Harbinger, they had few personnel to spare.

"Thank you, Commander," she said and tapped the touch screen, sending the finished report to Yeoman Henshaw, at which point the Counsellor spoke up and excused herself after affirming that they would schedule a time for a proper counselling session, hopefully not having to be in the Brig that time around. Ida smiled lightly to the Pinkskin in parting. "Thank you for your assistance, Counsellor O'Connor. My gratitude for being able to find the time to clear our two new crew members, despite the unconventional methods that were required."

When she left, Ida was alone with Cinn. All the paperwork was done. All questions asked. His rank's security clearance reinstated. All that was left were the unsaid between them. That which could be spoken now that they were alone. For they had been on the Theurgy for almost three years, Chief and Deputy, shoulder by shoulder keeping the crew in line despite the recent crisis, and dealing with the boarding parties Starfleet had beamed aboard mid-battle. Together, they had kept the crew safe and on their posts despite it all. Seeing him now cast a stark light upon Ida's recent actions, where she'd not had Wenn Cinn to lean on and help shoulder the burden. Alone, she had thought the responsibility was hers to bear on her own, and in order to get the job done, she'd done as much as she could to not unwittingly invite danger or let it go unchecked aboard their ship.

Wordlessly, Ida put the PADD aside on the bunk and walked over to Cinn where he sat - the approach clearly signalling that it was time for him to stand up. When she reached him, her antennae lowered a bit in ease, and her face allowed a thin smile. Since her Chief was no Pinkskin who prefered handshakes, and the Ridgenose seldom indulged in informal gestures of affection, Ida simply embraced the large man with her arms. It was not a hug of intimate affection, but more like a brotherly hug between comrades. They were copartners in an unfinished war, and Ida had been apart from her closest ally for far too long.

"If you die again," she grunted as she parted from him, eyes sharp yet underlined by the curve of her blue lips, "you better not hope your Prophets resurrect you again, for I will send you right back to them myself, you hear?"

It truly was a blessing to see the Ridgenose again, and she hoped the crew would realise how fortunate they were that he had returned to them. She folded her arms and regarded him for a second or two before moving on the the practicalities. "I made sure your personal affections were not fed to the replicators. I have them in a box here in Security. I think there was a spare uniform there as well."

Ida stepped out, leading the way through Cinn's old Security Office. "Come, see the new faces we have. We have lost many, but the Harbinger chipped in with new able men and women to fill the gaps."

Re: CHAPTER 01: Find Me Unafraid [0630 hrs.]

Reply #34
Cinn stood, glad that his spell on the wrong side of the field was over.  As the Andorian's arms enveloped him Cinn allowed himself a genuine smile and closed his eyes for a moment.  This contact proving once again he was really alive meant far more to him than Ida probably realised.  His own arms returned the gesture, feeling as though he was back in the fight and almost back the way things were before.

Her words as she stood back made him laugh, he should have expected as much really.  Cinn shook his head and smiled, "I hope for their sake and my own that the next time I die it will be permanent."  The news of his personal effects being safe was also a relief, particularly with the presence of another uniform there.  He glanced down at himself and shook his head, "I think the uniform should be the first stop.  Not exactly going to win any leadership points with the new recruits if I'm looking like I've just been blown out of the side of a ship."

He walked forwards and out of the cell, "Then I think we need to sit down and go over the records of what happened in my absence... I should really speak to the Captain too regarding my status here.  How about over dinner?  It feels like a month since I last ate anything."

Re: CHAPTER 01: Find Me Unafraid [0630 hrs.]

Reply #35
Hayden thought by the shorter woman's wide eyes she had frightened her, but despite what seemed to be her quite startled expression, the doctor gave no other sign she was surprised or even agitated.  It was unusual to see such an emotion driven response from a Vulcan without a hint of acknowledgement.  Surprised in her own right, it took a moment for O'Connor to recall the other woman's introduction and question.  Continuing to smile in what she hoped would be seen as a gesture of warmth, O'Connor offered.  "Pleased to meet you, Maya.  I have been assigned to the Theurgy as Chief Counselor, so yes, I plan to be here for as long as possible."

She felt no need to explain that she had been part of the Harbinger crew first and had then been traded so to speak during a Captain to Captain discussion that when it was reported to her made her feel like chattel.  Nor did she think it necessary to mention she planned to serve the Theurgy as long as she managed to live, which taking into consideration their circumstances, might not be long.

She didn't realize how her size might be intimidating, as she wasn't used to thinking of herself as terribly formidable in most circumstances.  Offering her hand tentatively for the doctor to shake, she hoped she wasn't insulting her culturally.  Now that she had the opportunity to make friends with a fellow healer, she realized how very much she wanted it to happen.

Re: CHAPTER 01: Find Me Unafraid [0630 hrs.]

Reply #36
Maya blinked as she realized that she was speaking with the ship's new counselor.  The crew now had a counselor, something they needed as badly as weaponry that could defeat the Calamity.   Lieutenant O'Connor was smiling and extending her hand so she was actually allowing the little Vulcan into her personal space, something very few people did. 

The little Vulcan stood there and grimaced strangely before fixing a somewhat artificial smile on her face as she extended a large spidery hand back.  Her psychic shields were up to prevent any unwanted mental contact.  A friendly greeting wasn't an invitation to invade someone's privacy after all.  Maya's gentle grip was cool and dry.   Vulcans didn't sweat and their body temperatures were surprisingly low for a species hailing from a hot arid world.

"Pleased to meet you, Doctor O'Connor," Maya said in her soft lilting voice, nearly repeating Hayden's greeting word for word.  "On behalf of all of us, thank you for joining our crew.  If it's any consolation you are greatly needed here."   When she spoke her grin vanished.  She hadn't quite gotten the knack of grinning and conversing simultaneously.  Smiling in front of a stranger was difficult for Maya.  It was like trying to urinate when someone else was present.  Even though she knew how to do it, it was a challenge she didn't always overcome.

In the meantime, Maya was careful not to mention the obvious:  If Hayden O'Connor's commanding officer had transferred the Harbinger's counselor to the Theurgy, the most likely reason was that Captain Vasser was planning a suicide mission and was evacuating all personnel that weren't essential to success.  It was likely that O'Connor would never see her shipmates again and would soon need counseling herself.  For all intents and purposes the crew of the Theurgy was the friendly human's family now.   For the sake of the counselor and her new charges it was essential to make Hayden feel as welcome and accepted as possible as quickly as possible.  The problem was that Maya had no idea how to do that.

"We have so much to discuss," the little ensign continued as she led her down the corridor.  "In the meantime we should go to sickbay.  There are a number of patients in physical distress as well as mental," she explained.  "Are you proficient in biological medicine?"

Re: CHAPTER 01: Find Me Unafraid [0630 hrs.]

Reply #37
"Then I think we need to sit down and go over the records of what happened in my absence... I should really speak to the Captain too regarding my status here.  How about over dinner?  It feels like a month since I last ate anything."

Leading the way out of the Brig, Ida inclined her head to the Brig Officer as they left - soon emerging in the main area of the Security Office. Present personnel looked up from what they were doing as they walked towards Ida's office. She wondered if Cinn would keep her as his Deputy after he was briefed about the mission records, but she kept the thought private.

"I agree," she said, keeping her tone professional and even, "we could sit down now, I suppose, yet I would venture a safe guess that you want to have a shower first. You might not be dead but you do smell like a corpse. I think you should make an appointment with the Captain first and be officially reinstated, and then you can debrief me about what has happened... unless the Captain fills you in first."

As they stepped into her office, Ida went to the farthest wall and crouched down by the storage compartments there. The three panorama-like computer panels on the wall behind her desk showed an orderly cascade of information from all manner of databases. Crew roster files and protocol listings were spread out along duty schedules and inventory lists. The few personal items in the office were of native Andorian origin, along with a few of her own drawings on the walls opposite the computer panels. One showed Wenn Cinn, and she had completely forgotten about the drawing he had made of him until the moment they stepped in. She did not make any comment on the oil paint portrait, however. Certainly not about to make things more awkward than they were for it hanging there.

"You will have to make an appointment with Ives through the Yeoman. Her name is Cameron Henshaw. The former one let the battles get to him, breaking down. The new Pinkskin seems confident enough. Also functions as some kind of morale officer," she said instead, and then addressed his suggestion that they would have a debriefing over dinner. "I do not think I have time for anything but a quick dinner, I am afraid, because there is an event planned in the evening. Some kind of show to raise crew morale in the holodeck. Everyone is invited that can be relieved from duty, and I... I suppose I could go, but that means I have to make up for time lost here in this office. In case you have not noticed, I am alone. Your successor was killed in action yesterday. In fact, two of your successors were, the most recent one while we tried to leave Theta Eridani IV."

She took out a large plastic box from the storage compartment, lifting it in her hands and turning to Cinn. It was rather heavy, but she was not the kind of woman to complain. "Here you are," she said as if she had said nothing of import about the deaths in Security and raked her white hair back from her face. "You could shower in the Phaser Range's locker rooms if you do not want to reacquire your rooms from the Quartermaster first. Up to you, Commander. I have little choice than to remain here right now, though."

Re: CHAPTER 01: Find Me Unafraid [0630 hrs.]

Reply #38
Letting the insult regarding his odour pass for now, Cinn followed his former deputy into the office with an unspoken promise to get her back for it later.  It wasn't as if she was exaggerating, he could smell himself and it wasn't entirely pleasant.

Cinn couldn't help but notice the picture of himself on the wall in the security office but he said nothing.  Frankly he was a little embarrassed that he would be considered a worthy subject for someone who clearly had talent as an artist.  Death had a strange effect on those left behind he had noticed, it just wasn't usual for those who had died to come back and realise what their death had done.

Ida filled him in on the details of making an appointment with the Captain, the Andorian seemed to be satisfied with the appointment so she couldn't be all that bad at her job.  He shook his head at the news that two of the people who had taken his position as CSec had died in the time he had been away.  There were many things he needed to catch up on including why Ida had not been made head of department.  His mind began to try and piece things together, taking her personnel information, personality traits and applying them to the needs of the role.  Something must have happened, he had been training her to take over from him should the worst have happened but something else had intervened.

"Eating on the run goes with the job but you are right, I should wait until Jien has decided what to do with me before I start taking over again.  I guess old habits, like old Sec officers, die hard."

Taking the box from her he set it down on the floor, "I'll leave this here until I get my quarters reassigned, if you don't mind."

He opened the container and pulled out the clean uniform and boots, "I'll shower in the locker room, the sooner I get rid of this death-smell the better.  A show to raise crew morale?  Sounds interesting.  Got to say being alive has boosted my morale no end."

With that he took his change of clothes and headed into the locker room of the range.  Despite there being not much left of his uniform he was careful not to damage it further as he stripped off, thinking to keep the tattered remains as a reminder of his experiences with the Prophets.  He carefully folded the material and lay it to the side of his clean uniform.

Now naked, he stepped beneath the shower and turned it on.  The sonic waves pulsed across his body, breaking down the dirt and grime and sending it on its way.  A real water shower would have been infinitely more satisfying but right now he would take what he was given gladly.  Placing his hands against the wall he leaned forward and let the waves massage their way across his neck and back.  The valley of his spine between the muscle of his shoulders more pronounced as he dropped his chest into the hold on the wall. 

He didn't want to think but his mind wandered anyway, returning to the moment he blasted out of the ship and the moment he met the Prophets.  He sighed heavily; knowing that it would take time to come to terms with it all did not mean he was patient enough to wait for it to happen.  He stood up and finished showering, determined to get back to some semblance of normality and deal with everything else when he had time to do so.

Stepping out of the shower he retrieved his clean clothes and began to pull them on, it certainly felt better to have an intact uniform.  As he dressed he spoke, "Computer, put me through to Yeoman Henshaw."

He paused for the acknowledgement, "Yeoman Henshaw? Wenn Cinn.  I need to talk to the Captain about what is to become of me.  Can you arrange a meeting please?"

He continued the conversation as he returned to Ida's office, standing a little taller and cutting a much more impressive figure now he no longer looked, felt and smelled like a vagabond.

Re: CHAPTER 01: Find Me Unafraid [0630 hrs.]

Reply #39
Hayden gripped Maya's hand without a second thought, chalking up the Ensign's slight awkwardness to any number of factors.  As much as O'Connor didn't think of herself in such terms, she knew she outranked the doctor, and that alone was enough to cause anxiety for some people.  There was also the fact this was their first meeting, and though Hayden had learned to cover over the years, O'Connor could relate to feeling nervous when meeting people for the first time.  When people learned she was a counselor, Hayden understood some people were going to make her a surrogate for whatever feelings they had toward others of her training, whether good or bad.  When she first graduated, this thought bothered her a great deal, and she made every effort to live down or up to others expectations.  Now, however, she simply accepted it, and did her best to work with the reality.

In this case, at least Maya was going out of her way to be friendly and complimentary of Hayden's role aboard, despite not knowing anything specific about her actual contributions.  This automatically endeared Maya to Hayden, who saw the effort as an indication of some degree of insecurity and a desire to be liked in return.  The source of such insecurities wasn't known to Hayden, and she was open to the possibility she had misread the Vulcan altogether.  Perhaps it was Hayden's own maternal counter-transference that was influencing how she reacted.  Either way, Hayden knew reciprocating Maya's kindness would only benefit both of them, and frankly, she wasn't in any mood to over-analyze herself or anyone else.

"Thank you for your kind words, Doctor.  My transfer was unexpected, but I ultimately want to be of service, and the Theurgy's crew are just as deserving as the crew of the Harbinger.  I also welcome and appreciate your service, and hope we can collaborate often."  Gesturing for the doctor to lead the way back to sickbay, she added, "To answer your question, I am a trained physician as well as a counselor, so feel free to put me to work."  She smiled wanly to let Maya know she regarded her warmly and to reinforce the notion she was not someone to fear.

Re: CHAPTER 01: Find Me Unafraid [0630 hrs.]

Reply #40
[ USS Theurgy | Deck 07 | Corridor between Brig and Battle Sickbay | 0645 hrs.]

It wasn't until they passed a gold collared petty officer in the corridor that Maya realized she was still holding onto Hayden's hand.  On Vulcan, holding hands was a faux pas for the unwanted telepathic contact made the gesture even more intimate and invasive then on other worlds.  It was the Vulcan equivalent of putting one's arms around another and forcing one's tongue down their throat.  Maya wanted to be friendly, but that was too friendly.

Maya stopped her forward momentum and let go of Hayden, opening her long spidery fingers with the grace of a gesturing stage magician.   She turned to face the new counselor and clasped her hands together and gave a short nod that was almost a bow.  "My apologies," she said.  "It's just that our need for your services threatens to defy belief.  In the past few months we have suffered bodily violation, mental and emotional tampering, loss of dignity, and the loss of our shipmates.  You and your ship are the first true allies we have encountered.   Suspicion and paranoia has reinforced our isolation.  To say that morale is suffering would be an understatement.  I am capable of meditation.  Others on this ship are not so fortunate."

Maya drew a breath and stared down the corridor at the young enlisted men and women going to and fro.  She spoke again.  "In the past the procreative act was considered the most effective way to relieve stress and form a bond between individuals, but after the infection we contracted in the Mahéwa System and the influence of the entity known as 'Istar' the vast majority of the crew experience revulsion and self-loathing in response to the reproductive urge.  Such a reaction to the concept of sexual intercourse may be considered normal on my world, but this is counter to what is normal to a a group of healthy young men and women from their respective cultures.  Their ability to find release and form relationships has been taken from them."

She looked at Hayden again.  "I know that most of my people find many forms of recreation frivolous, but I believe in this case it is essential.  We need to have our survival instincts and our trust in one another restored.  With your training in psychology and group dynamics I'm sure you could suggest an activity for the crew that would provide both amusement and relaxation.  I cannot.  My upbringing was very traditional, and neither my experience nor my imagination in that area can be considered extensive.  The activities that I have suggested have been compared to viewing the solidification of pigment.  Perhaps you have more appealing options?"


OOC:  This scene takes place before the Prologue in Sickbay that happens over three hours later, and WAY before the Lohlunat  celebration in Chapter 2!  Perhaps Hayden helped Rihen plan it...

Re: CHAPTER 01: Find Me Unafraid [0630 hrs.]

Reply #41
Holding hands with another woman wasn't a common experience for Hayden, and it did seem a bit odd Maya continued to keep her hand in O'Connor's as they walked together.  She would have expected Maya to be familiar with the custom of the handshake, at least through observation if not personal experience.  Hayden was just about to try to discreetly withdraw her hand when Maya appeared to realize what she had done and then apologized for it. Hayden offered a wry smile and shook her head as if to non-verbally say it wasn't anything to trouble herself over.

Hayden was surprised to hear the doctor relate her oversight to the trauma she and the crew had experienced, and more specifically the sexual related trauma.  O'Connor agreed wholeheartedly it was highly unlikely these experiences hadn't impacted the crew psychologically and interpersonally, and in fact, she and Jien Ives had discussed as much, but she had never thought of sexual activity as a primary source of morale in so many words.  She found it particularly interesting that Maya was speaking in such terms because as Maya had already referenced, the Vulcan approach to sexuality was in many ways one of the most repressive.

Of course, the clinician within Hayden viewed the sexual violations the crew had endured as more about a violation of trust than about sex itself.  Sexual dysfunction could certainly be a symptom of the violation of that trust, but frankly, given what the crew was facing, she was less concerned about whether the crew was having sex and more concerned about how they were working together as a team.  Sexual attraction was just one end of the social spectrum.

Hayden found herself wondering what Maya had experienced during the Niga episode, but O'Connor knew it wasn't the time or place to ask.  She had mentioned using meditation to cope, and that served as a reminder to Hayden that just because as a Vulcan Maya experienced things differently than others, it didn't mean she wasn't affected by it.  Turning her attention to the doctor's words, Hayden offered, "Perhaps a simple crew party is in order..."

Re: CHAPTER 01: Find Me Unafraid [0630 hrs.]

Reply #42
"I agree," Maya nodded.  "Unfortunately all of my attempts to plan crew festivities have met with failure.  Only three people attended my lecture on comparative Neolithic cultures amongst Federation species.  My attempt to form a Hammond organ appreciation society was a failure, and Chief O'Connor described my poetry reading idea as 'the most boring undertaking short of watching paint dry.'  After all of these setbacks, I am forced to admit that I seem to know very little about the concept of 'fun,'" she concluded using air quotes when she said the word 'fun.'

She looked away.  "I am forced to admit that I am not very popular," she admitted.   "In Starfleet Medical, I was known as the 'Uncanny Valley Girl'.   Conversing with me has been compared to conversing with the Tamarians, and other Vulcans are under the impression that I myself am in need of psychiatric therapy.  I am incapable of forming connections with my shipmates and encouraging them to reaffirm their bonds with one another."  Maya held her hands in front of her and looked down at the deck, the perfect picture of stoic melancholy and dignified perseverance. 



OOC:  This scene takes place before the sickbay prologue where Maya makes a similar confession to Rihen Neyah.  I'm assuming Hayden and Rihen come plan the Lohlunat  festival in chapter two off stage later but Hayden's involvement in the Lohlunat  festival is up to The Counselor.

 
Simple Audio Video Embedder