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Day 23 [0913 hrs.] - Thawed once more

[PO2 Kino Taer | Recovery Ward | Main Sickbay | Deck 11 | USS Theurgy] @Auctor Lucan

Petty Officer Second Class Kino Taer, dressed in a less than attractive patients' gown, slowly regained consciousness. Her mind - battered and torn after enduring yet another life-threatening injury - crawled weakly through a dense fog of war, lifting its head, desperately trying to gaze upon the bigger picture, yet failing every single time; for now.

Images started flashing through her dazed head. Deck 15, the Umbilical Connections Ports. The Borg, these horrible machine-zombies trying to access control panels with their cybernetic implants. Telford's face transforming into a horrible mask of hatred upon the sight. Kino tried to focus on these images, tried to halt them at will, analyze what they depicted in order to understand her situation, but to no avail. And just as she thought she could maybe find a way, a sharp pain somewhere in her body acted like a tsunami, blowing all the pieces of the puzzle from the table of her consciousness.

To Kino it felt like hours of constant pain. Darkness ripping its shadowy claws into her hip, tearing her skin open and licking the raw, bloody flesh. A burning tongue spreading acidic saliva from her left ankle up her leg, past her knee, all over her thigh, searing her crotch. Her body jerked, she gasped for air with a dry throat, then she returned to a still, peaceful state, her mind still aimlessly crawling, searching for the surface.

But the pain, a mere coping mechanism of her brain to deal with yet another substantial loss of biological integrity, also had a positive effect. The nebula inside her head cleared up, allowing her access to more pictures, more details, gruesome details at that. And slowly, transitioning from a state of artificially induced unconsciousness to careful and suspicious awareness, she regained most memories of the situation which ultimately led to her demise.

The distant sound of rifle fire behind her mixed with her own shots from the little graviton weapon she was handed as a means of last resort were fading as she focused on the words of the crewman next to her. "They are trying to access the consoles!" His voice shouted. He was panting a little, a result of both physical exhaustion and adrenaline rushing through his system.

They had just reached the entrance to Fighter Assault Bay when Kino's team was alerted to a group of Borg at the Umbilical Connection Ports, one deck above FAB. In a hurry, Kino directed her team, shouting out their new task in full sprit. "We have to secure the Umbilical Connections on deck 15 at all costs!" With Trent on his way, accompanied by her Bolian team mate, she could concentrate on this task, but on the other hand, she was one man short.
Upon arrival to deck 15 she registered at least a dozen Borg in sight, probably even more scattered all over the deck. After the crewman pointed out the most immediate threat of the enemy accessing two of the umbilicals,, she directed her team to prevent that at all costs, knowing of course that the phaser weapons carried by her subordinates will most likely fail to get the job done.

Her own graviton weapon on the other hand was a vital asset. Aiming at the nearest drone she lifted it and slowly pulled the trigger, releasing a beam which decapitated the drone instantly.
A quick glance around the large, open room confirmed her first assessment. The Borg shields have adapted to the phaser fire and seemed impenetrable. "Try to lure them away from the connectors!" She shouted to her team mates. There was no time for further advise, she was the only one with effective means against those fuckers.

Three more drones fell to her trusty graviton beam. But this trust was deeply shaken just a moment later. Aiming at an enemy that had managed to get behind her while she was shortly distracted, all she got out of the weapon was a sound no soldier ever wants to hear in battle.

Click!

She tried pulling the trigger again and again the weapon failed. "Fuck!" She shouted and evaded the drones right hand by millimeters with a backwards roll. Assessing her immediate surroundings she realized that they were running out of options. At least three drones were approaching her, another was about to drill her nasty assimilation tubes into a console and her team must have either been scattered across the deck or already zombiefied and adding to the threat.

And as if the situation was not already fucked up beyond any recognition, the deck was suddenly flooded with a dim, green light. Deep in her guts, Kino knew what that meant. A turn of her head confirmed her suspicion. Appearing in a the middle of the bay, engulfed in green energy beams, six more Borg drones appeared.

Kino took off. Running as fast as she could, she tried to escape the drones until she managed to get a message out, informing Security Ops about the situation. In full sprint she tapped her combadge, ready to speak, but the badge refused. The distinctly recognizable error chirp sounded. "No! Fucking shit!" She shouted, jumping over an injured crewman as she tried again. Error chirp!

For a moment she stopped, looking around. The crewman she just jumped over had a broken leg but did not seem to be in immediate danger. The surrounding drones were clearly focused on either their attempts to breach the ships systems or on her. The injured soldier was no threat and therefor not worthy of recognition. Although the drones were slowly closing in on her, she checked the rest of the bay. None of her team mates were visible, nobody was shooting. It was a surreal scene. Here they were, highly trained, combat hardened soldiers trying desperately to make a difference in a fight that had the potential to end everything they held dear. And yet, the room was mostly silent if one ignored the moaning crewman and the mechanical whirring of the machine-zombies.

Carefully weighing her options, the Petty Officer started to run again. Her path led her to the center of the drones attention, a set of consoles which were probably connected to the surrounding connecton ports. She had no time to think about the reasons for their interest in those particular access points and without contact to engineering, she was not able to get external advice. Her options were extremely limited. It all came down to one of two possible courses of action; either retreat and hope for the best or risk everything and maybe, just maybe do some good.

Kino was not going to let everyone down now. Not her team, not the ship and it's crew. Not Eliska! She reached for the back of her suit, closing her fingers around one of her detonation charges and activating it's remote detonation mode. The charges she carried were not nearly the strongest she ever used, but they were designed not to damage the ship's interior too much when detonated on board. Plotting her course she was already holding the device at the ready. Then she made her first run, ducking an attempted attack from one blueish drone and circling another, she made it to the back of one of the system intruders. This zombie was completely engulfed in his task and did not seem to notice the charge she attached to his back.

Her path led her down the bay now, getting enough distance between her and her pursuers to ready two more charges. In the distance, close to the rear end of the deck, she saw another crewman trying to stop a severe bleeding from a wound in his left arm. But she could not help him. Not now. Another run towards those zombie hackers was due. And another and another until she had placed all but one of her charges on those dirty motherfuckers. Her heart raced, her lungs ached and her legs were starting to fail her as she made the last tour.
She made it, barely, but she made it. All hackers were packing a very hot surprise now. All she needed now was distance and cover to blow them all to pieces. She turned left and ran, gathering all her strength and resolve to make it out of the hot zone. She was too close to the charges.

Something stopped her dead in her tracks. She was just about to pass another duo of drones as one of them managed to grab her right arm. The inertia kept her legs and torso moving towards the far end of the bay, causing her to loose her footing and fall. "Let go, you bastard!" She screamed and turned towards her attacker. Her eyes widened with endless fear as she saw the assimilation tubes protruding from his arm, sinking into her own biosynthetic limb. "Noooo!" She grunted, her voice hoarse and fading in her own ears. She did not know if her artificial arm was capable of defending from a nanite invasion, but she was not going to wait and see.

She closed her eyes, ignored her attacker and pushed the button.

The opposing wall was lit up in a bright flash, blinding her momentarily. She knew, she was fucked. She took a risk, but the stakes were too high. But it was worth it if it would safe the ship. The crew. Eliska! She was an expert, she knew what was about to happen. And even though she would rather die than become a soulless drone, her mouth opened instinctively, allowing the pressure that would soon be forced upon her body to escape. But to what end? It was over, all over.

A picture appeared before her inner eye. Not a movie clip of her all-time favorites. Just one single picture. One impression. A dear one. It showed Eliska Bremmer in the armory, tears in her eyes. Tears of joy, of relieve and... and...


Petty Officer Second Class Kino Taer finally opened her eyes. Tears were running down her face, her hands reaching up to cover it from sight as she started sobbing uncontrollably.
Lt JG Sorek Morgan
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Re: Day 23 [0913 hrs.] - Thawed once more

Reply #1
[ Vigenary Model I-9 Surgical Android | Recovery Ward | Main Sickbay | USS Theurgy ] Attn: @Lathaniel
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Turning her cranial unit, V-Nine's lens zoomed in on the sliding doors to the Recovery Ward. "Oh..." she said through the speaker below her lens, and she turned back to the nurse she'd been talking with. "Pardon me, duty calls. Thank you for the chat!"

Wirelessly, she'd been alerted that a particular patient had come to after her extensive surgery, and V-Nine didn't want her to be left guessing as to what might have happened to her. Without much delay, she stepped through the sliding doors, the soles beneath her metallic feet making little sound as she approached the biobed that had sent the alert. She saw that the Petty Officer's mismatched eyes were open, and despite the state of vulnerability that the teal patient's gown might suggest, V-nine got the distinct impression that this Human specimen wasn't defenceless - even though she'd thawed from cryogenic stasis the evening before. Throughout the night, V-Nine had worked on saving the Petty Officer's life, and it had been fortunate that she was of the more strong female variety of her species. Her resilience had persevered in the end.

"Hello," she said to the woman while she approached, knowing from Kino Taer's personnel file that she was listed as original Theurgy crew, which certainly wasn't a given fact since the current crew complement was comprised of several different officers from different ships. In a way, the same was true about herself, since she'd been on the Versant before she set her foot on the Theurgy. She realised, however, that the Petty Officer couldn't have any idea whom she was.

"I am Vigenary Model I-9 Surgical Android, but please, call me V-Nine," she said in her chipper and pleasant tonality, for she noticed the tears, but did not yet address them. "You are aboard the Theurgy still, and we made it through the battle. You've been in stasis prior to the surgery."

Having reached the biobed, V-Nine raised her thumb and forefinger and began to scan the female where she laid. "Please, tell me how you're feeling. Any lingering pain?"

She did not yet specify what manner of surgery she'd undergone, so that she didn't frighten the patient. Better she took stock of her body's level of discomfort, finding a lack of pain, instead of suggesting where she ought to feel it...

Re: Day 23 [0913 hrs.] - Thawed once more

Reply #2
[PO2 Kino Taer | Below Decks Lounge | Deck 28 | USS Theurgy] Attn: @Auctor Lucan

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Her mind still trapped in the maze of this very dynamic flashback, trying to make sense of the fact that she was still alive, V-Nine's approach went unnoticed by the Security Officer. Her hands caressed her own face in disbelieve, then ran lower, inspecting the skin of her neck, searching for her own pulse. Just as she felt the calming flow of blood through her veins, she heard the sound of the android. She could not quite make out the exact words, too absorbed with herself and the fact that she was really here, really alive, that the first words of the Surgical Android reached her as nothing but a background noise. But as V-Nine stepped into Kino's field of vision, the young Petty Officer slowly forced her head up and her eyes to focus on the peculiar source of the most friendly artificial voice she has ever had the pleasure to hear.

Having missed most of the android's introduction, Kino tilted her head slightly while listening and trying to make sense of the words she was hearing. Still aboard the Theurgy? We made it? She thought to herself while fighting another wave of flashback images which were trying to occupy her mind. If someone had asked her to give an estimate about the outcome of the battle, she would have been unable to predict that the Theurgy would prevail. But while the situation on her end, on deck 15, was close to catastrophic, she knew very well that she was not assigned to any of the most vital parts of the ship. A Petty Officer like her could only try to glimpse at the big picture in a battle like this. It seemed like the rest of the crew did a much better job than she managed to do.

As V-Nine raised her metallic hand to perform the scan, Kino had to subdue darting off the bed and into cover. She felt a sudden tremor besetting her left hand and blood rushing in her ears. Come on, Kino! This is not a Borg. Get your fucking shit together! She scolded herself.

After V-Nine had asked her how she felt, Kino sat there with a blank stare, asking herself the same question the android had just voiced. How was she feeling? The Petty Officer looked puzzled. V-Nine interrupted her in determining her own physical condition when she approached her, completely distracting Kino from the question of how she could possibly have survived. Now, that she was asked to provide details about her fettle, she noticed that some things were not quite right.

Of course, there was the ever lingering headache, something she experienced before when coming out of surgery. And she felt weak and irritated, which was also absolutely normal given the circumstances she was in. She looked down her own body, but only saw the teal patient's gown covering two arms, two legs and a torso. Pondering the flashbacks she went through just seconds ago, she slowly, anxiously settled her hands on her left leg, looked at it for a moment and then raised her eyes again, focusing on the artificial member of the medical staff at the foot of her bed. "I don't... know." She shook her head, tried to fight the tears that were welling up in her eyes for no apparent reason, but simply could not hold them back. Swallowing a sob, she continued. "I don't know. I don't feel any pain, but I... is this leg... I mean, is it mine?" Kino tried to be tough, tried to be the warrior she felt obligated to depict at all times, but she failed utterly. Her eyes, now focused on V-Nine's face, expressed a silent but pressing plea for answers. The Petty Officer was lost, she did not know why or how, but she felt empty, alone and desperate. Having lived a life full of adventures, struggles, battles and victories while always keeping her head up high and her fists raised, this young, beautiful woman suddenly felt like she had hit rock bottom. With a weak, shaky voice she raised her still trembling left hand and whispered to the android. "Please, help me."
Lt JG Sorek Morgan
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Re: Day 23 [0913 hrs.] - Thawed once more

Reply #3
[ Vigenary Model I-9 Surgical Android | Recovery Ward | Main Sickbay | USS Theurgy ] Attn: @Lathaniel
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Looking as hardened and combat-worn as she did, V-Nine had expected the Trill specimen to be far more aggressive towards her. She was pleased to find, however, that Petty Officer Taer didn't treat her poorly just because she was a construct, if perhaps being a bit apprehensive at first. Nonetheless, it appeared the female with the short hair had no combative tendencies. Judging by her medical record, V-Nine thought she might have become used to being treated for injuries. Certainly not surprising given the amount of artificial augmentations she had, of course, but she did react to her leg not feeling the same.

"Of course I will help you, Petty Officer. There is no need to be concerned," she said in a chipper tone and tilted her cranial unit in a friendly manner. V-Nine debated whether the specimen was the kind to appreciate a lengthy medical presentation about the surgery, how it had been executed, and what parts of her had been replaced or repaired with artificial tissues. Her assessment was that she would likely bore the Trill out of her mind with the extended explanation, so instead, she ceased her scan and accessed her medical journal on a PADD, high-lighted the text that summarised the needed repairs to her biology, and then handed the PADD over to the patient.

"Here, you can check the list yourself. The damage to your leg and lower torso was an immediate concern after the stasis sequence was ended. In order to support the integrity of your body and keeping it from collapse required new structural parts for your hip, a new leg, and some reconstructive efforts in the surrounding areas. I can assure you that all of it has the right amount of flexibility to allow for normal bodily functions. Besides the requirement for additional check-up the coming weeks, and some additional efforts to repair your internal reproductive organs, you should not find any discomfort from your injury."

In answer to the scan she'd made, the Trill had said that she was in no pain, which corroborated with the readings, so V-Nine merely folded her metallic hands behind her back and gave the ordinary reply, which she'd been able to hone a bit for sake of forestalling any confusion. "Would you mind trying to stand up? I can assure you that the nervous profile has been calibrated to fit your biological system, but bear in mind that there might be a period of adaptation. The length of such is often individual."

She held out a hand, to offer support if so needed. "Slowly, please..."

Re: Day 23 [0913 hrs.] - Thawed once more

Reply #4
[PO2 Kino Taer | Below Decks Lounge | Deck 28 | USS Theurgy] Attn: @Auctor Lucan

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Kino had her eyes focused on her hand, looking at it tremble as it halfway shielded the android's face from her vision. Only when the medical device handed her a PADD, she managed to direct her eyes away from it and reach out to inform herself about the procedures that she underwent. Looking at the screen, she again asked herself how she could possibly have survived this ordeal. New leg? New hip? She thought, the android's friendly voice just faintly reaching her brain. Fuck, I'm turning into a cyborg more and more. And as she read through the medical records while trying to listen to the explanations of V-Nine, she felt herself slowly regaining her composure. She was still shocked, still felt alien in her own body and she was sure that this would take some time to get over with. But she was alive. Her left hand reached for her eyes, rubbing the tears away in an unconscious reflex. For the moment, Kino Taer was back. And she was determined to get back on her feet as well.

So when V-Nine asked her to stand up she nodded firmly and - setting the PADD down on the foot of the bed - took the offered hand while slowly turned her hip to get her legs over the edge. "It feels different, but I think it'll work." She mumbled as she managed to put her bare feet on the cold, sterile floor. "Ungh... cold." She said with a hint of surprise in her tone. The fact that she felt the floor and its temperature meant that both her legs were wired correctly. A slight smile formed around her lips as she lifted her head and let her gaze wander from her legs to the surgeon's optical sensor. "You did this? I mean, the leg, the hip? That's your work?" She suddenly asked herself where exactly this machine came from, how it ended up aboard the Theurgy and who built it, but she pushed all these questions aside. Did it really matter? Was this vessel not a grab bag of odd surprised in strange circumstances? Kino could not help but chuckle. This damn ship really is something.

"Thank you, V-Nine. This feels more realistic than my arm did back then." And with these words, she slid off the biobed, tensed her muscles - the biological as well as the artificial ones - and slowly started to lower her weight onto her feet. She kept her hands on the edge of the bed for now, making sure her legs did not give cave, but she felt confident that they would both carry her quite effectively.
Lt JG Sorek Morgan
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Re: Day 23 [0913 hrs.] - Thawed once more

Reply #5
[ Vigenary Model I-9 Surgical Android | Recovery Ward | Main Sickbay | USS Theurgy ] Attn: @Lathaniel
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"Next, I want you to run," said V-Nine, but she soon let out a giggle and tilted her cranial unit in a bashful way. "Just joking!"

Hearing the question, the sudden impulse to jest had came from her processing matrix, doubtlessly yet another feature of her upgrade. The difference was the deadpan timing she actually achieved. Since the patient seemed stable enough, she held out her arm as if she was a Human suitor of the 19th century.

"Here, lean on my arm and we slowly walk around this ward," she said, positive that her platform was sturdy enough even though it was a bit top-heavy. "I did preform the surgery, and I am glad to hear you find your new leg easier to adapt to than when you got your artificial arm. Do you remember anything from the battle against the Borg drones? Reports state that you were in Stellar Cartography mere minutes before you were hurt, and that you assisted Commander Trent in sending a computer virus into the cube. Should that be the case, I can tell you that the pause the virus caused in the battle was essential for the positive outcome. Had you not assisted the Commander, it might be the Theurgy had been destroyed, and the Borg would have invaded both the Alpha and Beta Quadrants."

Perhaps it was a bit much to lay at the feet of someone who could barely walk, but V-Nine wanted to encourage the Trill so that she might feel like she contributed in the fighting. Rather that, she imagined, than feeling like she hadn't made any difference at all before she was hurt.

"Are you all right? Do you feel like you are strong enough to recover in your quarters or do you wish to remain here in sickbay? My readings suggest that your physical state might benefit from more bipedal training rather than being 'holed up' here in sickbay, as some of your fellow crew might call it."

Re: Day 23 [0913 hrs.] - Thawed once more

Reply #6
[PO2 Kino Taer | Below Decks Lounge | Deck 28 | USS Theurgy] Attn: @Auctor Lucan

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Run? Kino thought as she slowly stood up, straightened her back and closed her eyes for a second. I don't think I could, even if I dared try. But she granted the friendly android a chuckle in response to her joke. It was not everyday that one met a humorous machine like V-Nine.

Carefully setting one foot in front of the other, trying hard to get a feeling for the new limb, she listened to V-Nine elaborate on her achievements during battle. It seemed, like she really had made a difference after all. Not necessarily by protecting those damn umbilical ports, but by aiding Trent in getting through the attackers alive. Still, she could not say that she was completely satisfied. She might have contributed to saving things, but she also lost a lot personally. The leg felt good, that was not the problem. Reproductive organs damaged, was that it? Kino had not really pondered the thought of someday giving birth. And even though this topic was almost unavoidable for a woman, she did not feel like this was the issue. She shrugged and focused on walking again. Baby steps! She repeated the words of the therapist who helped her recover after loosing her arm. Towards V-Nine, she uttered a "Thank you." when the android finished explaining to her that she was not a complete fuck-up.

When asked if she was alright and ready to leave sickbay, she nodded in approval. "Yes, I think I can manage getting to my quarters. I mean, I can walk, see? She smiled and - letting go of V-Nine's supporting arm - took a few steps around. And even though she was moving slowly and carefully concentrated on each step she took, she had the feeling her 'bipedal' means of transportation were functioning as they should. "All good." She added before turning towards her life-saver. "Is there anything I need to know? Any medication to take? A rehab program to absolve?" She inquired with a thankful smile.
Lt JG Sorek Morgan
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Re: Day 23 [0913 hrs.] - Thawed once more

Reply #7
[ Vigenary Model I-9 Surgical Android | Recovery Ward | Main Sickbay | USS Theurgy ] Attn: @Lathaniel
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Satisfied in seeing that the specimen named Kino Taer could both stand and walk on her own, V-Nine nodded approvingly and picked up the medical journal to make some notes on the early progress.

“I will send you a rehabilitation program to your computer console, and you can peruse the instructions and vids in your own good time.” She folded her metallic hands behind her back, holding the PADD there as she continued. “I believe you should not preform anything beyond light administrative work to begin with in your Department, but that is something you should speak to your superior officers about once you report to them. They will have access to Medical’s report on your recovery as well, and if you require anything further, you can just contact us here at your convenience.”

Having said as much, V-Nine’s lens bobbed down to the scant hospital gown that Kino wore, and she cleared her throat a little - the digital sound merely imitating that of an actual throat, of course - and she made a quick addendum. “You may use the replicator over there to get a fresh uniform. The one you arrived with wasn’t serviceable. I wish you a pleasant day, Petty Officer, and a swift recovery. I will notify the Chief Medical officer of your choice to recovery in your quarters instead of the Recovery Ward. Bye!”

She waved at her and tilted her cranial unit sideways, before she walked away and tended to the next patient.

Re: Day 23 [0913 hrs.] - Thawed once more

Reply #8
[PO2 Kino Taer | Below Decks Lounge | Deck 28 | USS Theurgy]

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Kino smiled at the android throughout its elaborations on the rehab program and the advice to stick to light work. She was listening, even though she seemed not to. She was happy that she survived, happy that everything would be fine after some rehab and she could not wait to contact a certain someone in order to meet up and continue where they left off.

"Thank you, V-Nine." She said again, after the android mustered her and offered her the replicator. "I'm glad you joined our crew." She quickly added as the android turned and walked away. It was only after the machine disappeared, that she noticed her last words to this amazing piece of medical equipment were whispered and probably did not reach their recipient. She shrugged and turned towards the replicator.

Moments later she was presentable again. The tight-fitting uniform felt good on her skin, on both types of skin even. With a satisfied grin she pinned the combadge on her chest and walked out of the recovery ward. Passing the Medical Officer's duty station, she decided that the Chief of Security could wait just a little bit longer for her to report back from the dead. She had urgent business to attend to. Words to speak, which had lingered in her mind, hidden from herself for way too long. After almost dying yet again, she felt it was finally time to love.

Kino turned the corner and passed the reception on her way towards the entrance. Her hand rose and tapped her combadge. "Thea, locate Petty Officer Bremmer, please!"

FIN



OOC: @Auctor Lucan  Since I am currently not sure how Thea would reply in this specific case (Bremmer being dead), I'd like to clarify that OOC and then have it in Kino's Directors Cut thread.
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