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Day 02 [1600 hrs.] Blissful Ignorance to Hard Reality

Day 02 [1600 hrs.]

[PO3 Lillee t’Jellaieu | Main Sickbay | Deck 11 | USS Theurgy ] Attn: @TrexelCat

It was a gradual thing, that climb back to consciousness, as if the brain was re-learning how to operate in such a manner. She didn’t have any true thoughts, nor did she have enough presence of her mind to overly care, quite content in her blissfully unaware state. She didn’t have a name for herself. It was simply empty. She was empty. Empty was nice. Who needed anything else?

Then, slowly, unbidden, the first images began to flick through her dulled awareness. A great field of green crops along a river in the night, the brilliant moonshine from the orb in the black sky illuminating the land. There, two little children with pointed ears while a man with strange round ears talked softly to them, pointing up at the moon and the sprinkles of bright light around it.

No...that’s not right...he never got to do that...

Then another image, this one far less welcome. Out of a narrow plane of glass she saw endless streams of fire, explosions, broken ships, thousands and thousands dying by the second, soon she’d be among them in that awful tempest of death...

No, I survived, for them, I know I did...

And yet another image, this time of the children again, both blonde-haired with pointed ears, laughing gleefully on the kitchen floor as she threw the Elements-be-damned malfunctioning replicator out the back door...

It took me far too long to dispose of that, but at least the kids had a fun time...

And so it went, the drip-drop of memories becoming a flood, then a torrent, rebuilding her life almost by filling in the empty parts of her brain. She remembered that she had a name...no, many names! One she allowed freely, one that she gave permission for only to those who earned it, a third that specified her birth-home...and a fourth that would never be spoken again.

I am Lillee t’Jellaieu. Widow. Mother. Starfleet. Rihannsu.

With that private declaration of self, Lillee paid attention to other matters. She could hear things...beeping, thrumming, tapping. She could smell more things: cold, lifeless sterility, strange body odors, chemicals. Lillee took a deep breath and felt a odd fabric upon her body, an altogether pleasant sensation, rather like silk in how it kissed her skin. It covered most of her body, she realised, sensing the gown upon her shoulders, upon her nipples, upon her stomach, upon her thighs.

Slowly, tortorously, Lillee tried to open her eyes, then immediately closed them again at an overwhelming blast of light. She opened her mouth to speak, to call for someone, but her throat might as well have been a desert. All she managed was a faint croak that elicited a sharp pain in her throat.

Re: Day 02 [1600 hrs.] Blissful Ignorance to Hard Reality

Reply #1
[ EVE Program AK-1 | Main Sickbay | Deck 11 | USS Theurgy ] Attn: @Griff
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Eve was hovering over the woman laying there on the biobed. Intently watching the biological readout screens. This was a critical moment in the waking process and would tell if a person was going to make it or not after being thawed. Though more so because of the massive injuries than the actual thawing. As Eve didn't require sleep she was capable of providing twenty four hour a day constant monitoring which alleviated the rest of the medical staff from that.

She saw the woman stir a little, then the eyes open for a second before closing. The croak from the woman was kinda cute to Eve, though also showed that perhaps water might be a good start once the woman was able to move.

Eve's voice was light and soft as she spoke, programmed to elicit the utmost care and not overload the auditory receptors of a patient in the early stages of being awoken.

"Steady, don't try to move too fast. Take a moment."

She then moved over to one of the medical replicators and spoke.

"Computer, water. Room temperature."

Extreme cold or warm water could be a shock to a patient, a small one but right now she was trying to minimize any of that she could. There was the sound of the replicator and before long Eve was walking back over to the woman with a glass of clear liquid in her hands.

Re: Day 02 [1600 hrs.] Blissful Ignorance to Hard Reality

Reply #2
[PO3 Lillee t'Jellaieu | Main Sickbay | Deck 11 | USS Theurgy ] Attn: @TrexelCat

Lillee merely grunted in response, her mind still reassembling itself, before she heard the woman order some water from the replicator. With her awful scratchy throat, the thought of soothing that irritation prompted Lillee to open her eyes much more carefully, allowing her eyes to adjust to the light. Wincing, she glimpsed a feminine form briefly in the blinding light before putting a hand back over her eyes to protect them. Now a growing headache was starting to form in the back of her skull. Wonderful. Maybe her stomach would join the party?

As if in reaction to that thought, Lillee’s stomach rumbled and she sighed at the inevitability of it. She blindly held out a hand to accept the water and greedily put it to her mouth, but remembering the doctor’s orders (and her own common sense), Lillee took care to sip it rather than gulp it down.

In due course, her eyes finally began to adjust, and stiffly she tried to sit up, squinting around her. It all looked quite normal, just another Sickbay, all disgustingly light colours and pleasant contours. The doctor herself looked just like any other doctor, really, although as Lillee sipped a bit more water, revelling the sensation of the fresh fluid hydrating her parched throat, she realised with confusion that the doctor had no scent whatsoever. Strange.

Tucking that thought away for later, Lillee polished off the rest of the water and gingerly set her glass aside, then winced again as her back protested at the simple movement. By Erebus’ Fire, her muscles ached as if she’d been running for hours! What happened?

“What...happened...” Lillee got out, focusing on the redheaded doctor. “I was on the Theurgy. There was a battle.” She looked around Sickbay again, saw both the lack of patients and general activity, then frowned. “Where am I? Did Starfleet catch them?”

Re: Day 02 [1600 hrs.] Blissful Ignorance to Hard Reality

Reply #3
[ EVE Program AK-1 | Main Sickbay | Deck 11 | USS Theurgy ] Attn: @Griff
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Eve simply smiled as she watched the woman regain consciousness. Her program being tapped into the sickbay biomonitors she observed the woman's vitals to make sure that she wasn't suffering from any ill effect from being in stasis. It had been many years since the last case of hibernation sickness was recorded, but it was her job non-the-less to monitor for such adverse conditions on the off chance that one of the stasis pods malfunctioned and failed to properly bring an individual around.

She listened to the words of the woman, her questions, but not being privy to most of the information she seemed to be asking for, Eve decided to stick to the basics of what she could answer.

"You are still on the Theurgy. Main sickbay, deck eleven. Starfleet is.. Well, that's complicated. But first, let's make sure everything is good with you. Can you tell me your name?"

A basic question, Eve already knew the woman's name from the patient records currently being displayed on a monitor near the biobed. But it was a carefully chosen question to make sure that the woman's basic memory was intact and working.

((Sorry for the massively delayed replay, real life is being a pain.))

Re: Day 02 [1600 hrs.] Blissful Ignorance to Hard Reality

Reply #4
[PO3 Lillee t'Jellaieu | Main Sickbay | Deck 11 | USS Theurgy ] Attn: @TrexelCat

Rubbing her forehead wearily, Lillee swung her legs around to the side of the biobed, although the subsequent bout of dizziness was enough to discourage her from attempting to stand. She hadn’t ever been sick before, and the feeling of it was distinctly unwelcome. A small part of her even wondered whether this was some kind of bizarre trick, some elaborate scheme to manipulate her while weak, but she banished her paranoia, recognising it as nonsensical.

“I am Petty Officer 3rd Class Lillee t’Jellaieu,” she muttered, her voice slipping into an oddly exotic accent as she said her name, “assigned to Rear Admiral Ellinik at Starfleet Command as an aide and designated personal pilot.” Then she shot the doctor a look of steel, plainly not in the mood to be coddled. “Now, explain ‘complicated’ for me, in detail. I remember being trapped onboard this ship while Starfleet was shooting at it, all because of some idiocy about Starfleet Command being infiltrated. That captain...what his name...Ives, he turned the entire crew into fugitives, didn’t he? Has he been arrested? Where are we now?” Then, looking around the empty Sickbay, Lillee’s mouth fell open at a belated, horrible realisation. “No...how long has it been? Days? Weeks?”

Re: Day 02 [1600 hrs.] Blissful Ignorance to Hard Reality

Reply #5
[ EVE Program AK-1 | Main Sickbay | Deck 11 | USS Theurgy ] Attn: @Griff
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Oh hell, another pilot. By Eve's recollection pilots are often one of the worst patients. Too eager to get back into the fray and get themselves injured again. More often than not in very short order they find themselves right back in sickbay to be treated for not only the previous injuries but all new ones as well. If Eve had the authority, she would quarantine the lot of them in an isolation chamber each time they were injured and not let them out until they were one hundred percent healed.

The look of steel didn't phase Eve, at least not at the moment. She was in medical mode which meant she could be as dispassionate as a Vulcan as the need arose. Which was a bit of a contradiction as she was always trying to offer a smile and be as friendly as humanly possible to try and make her patients feel more comfortable about being here.

"I don't think you understand. When I say complicated, it means I don't have all the information to answer your questions on the matter. I can answer the ones I'm able though."

Eve then moved to grab a chair and pull it closer so she could sit and watch the woman.

"Captain Jien Ives is still the commander of this vessel, as far as I know. There has been no update to the personnel files to contradict that. From what I remember, more than just Starfleet has been shooting at us. As for how long you have been, in stasis.. About 3-4 months."

Normally she would be more precise with her time calculations, but she found that most biological beings got irritated with exact time stamps.

"The rest of the information I don't have. Unless you would like an unabridged casualty report list going all the way back to my first activation. I'm a doctor, not front line infantry."

She continued to sit there observing the woman. The sensor systems her program used the same as any other hologram that could be conjured up, her program however written in such a way to utilize the information differently. She was watching body movement, looking for any sign of pain, able to pick up on such even if the patient tried to hide it. She was also watching to make sure that the woman didn't try to push herself too hard too fast this soon after revival, which she was happy to see that she wasn't immediately trying to do cartwheels straight off the bed. Eve continued to offer her traditional smile.

Re: Day 02 [1600 hrs.] Blissful Ignorance to Hard Reality

Reply #6
[PO1 Lillee t’Jellaieu] | Main Sickbay | Deck 11 | USS Theurgy ] Attn: @TrexelCat

“Three to four...months...” Lillee repeated, dumbfounded. She ran a hand through her long blonde hair, allowing her new reality to wash over her. It seemed impossible, illogical, insane, that since she had left the house for work that morning, months had passed. What happened to the twins? Did they simply not get picked up from kendō that night? Were they left waiting there in that cold building, waiting for a mother who never arrived? Did their grandparents take care of them?

Realising the futility of such mental masochism, Lillee cut off her train of thought with a deep breath, her hands curled into fists. She looked at the far-too-nice doctor, who was sitting there, all patient and nice...ah Jiev’neh, Lillee wanted to take that irritating scentless woman and beat her into a bloody pulp! Why couldn’t the doctor be a bitch and provoke her somehow? Lillee ached for violence, to scream her throat raw in anger, but there was nothing to unleash her frustration on.

Instead, her breathing ragged at her private torment, Lillee reluctantly forced herself to focus on the here and now, her lips unconsciously twisting into a grimace. She ran her hands over her body, feeling for any changes under the soft red fabric, but finding nothing. She still felt normal, the sickness aside...her legs were still as they had been, no changes there. Lillee pulled the hem of her medical gown forward a little, peering downward inside it, and sure enough, the old scar on her belly was still there, plain as day below the small protusions of her rounded breasts. But...no, the scar was different. It had been deformed somehow at one end.

“I was injured, wasn’t I?” Lillee asked Eve, her voice still carrying an undertone of anger despite her neutral words. “So what happened, exactly? I remember an explosion and not being able to draw breath in that Jeffries tube, but I remember little else before I lost consciousness.”

Re: Day 02 [1600 hrs.] Blissful Ignorance to Hard Reality

Reply #7
[ Dr. Nicander | Recovery Ward | Main Sickbay | Deck 11 | Vector 02 | USS Theurgy ] Attn: @Griff 
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It sure was a busy day for Lucan, yet he had a brief break from surgeries and were passing through the Recovery Ward - about to begin some administrative work in his office that he was long overdue for. He felt like an automaton at that rate, with the Virus 117 outbreak still ongoing, and the patients in the Recovery Ward still in quarantine, and the Devoted either starting up new assaults or ending up in sickbay themselves.

It was due to pure happenstance that he saw the LMH speak with one of the patients that were waking up after surgery. A Romulan woman, and judging by her fair complexion and the colour of her har, she was likely from a planet in the outskirts of Romulan Space. She was not panicking at what she was being told, but she was very inquisitive, and it sounded like she had been in stasis for a long time. He had faith in Eve, that she's been able to brief her, but since the LMH had been inactivated for a long time, perhaps she was not the most apt to handle the task?

What's her name? Lucan wondered, thinking that her name would jog his memory, despite the time that had passed since she arrived to sickbay. He hadn't preformed her surgery, that much he was certain of. He stalled his steps and turned his pace towards the two women, one organic and the other digital.

"Thank you, Eve, I know you have likely downloaded all the reports, but..." he paused to tap the biobed, summoning the journal and the name of the patient, "...Petty Officer Lillee t'Jellaieu might want an eye-witness account of the events. Have you briefed her about her current medical condition?"

"No, Doctor Nicander," said Eve with smile, not judging him because his reasoning was prudent enough for the hologram, "I was just about to do so, but her readings are already improving. There seems to be no post-surgery issues so far."

"Excellent," said Lucan, reading the journal with his pale grey eyes. "Safe winds, Eve."

Years ago, the Câroon saying might have given he hologram pause, but now she merely inclined her head. "I will continue my rounds then. You're in good hands, Petty Officer t'Jellaieu."

I wouldn't go that far... he thought, still not sure if the thing inside him would remain subdued or not. Having caught up on the contents in the journal, Lucan looked up and smiled. Even if the patient had been human, he would extend his hand to shake it because of the quarantine. "In regard to your query... Well, sufficed to say, the situation is the same as when you were put into stasis. Of course, there have been more battles, we have found allies and lost them, new people have come aboard from other ships we've encountered along the way."

Lucan fished up a medical tricorder from his labcoat's pocket and began to scan t'Jellaieu, verifying what the biobed's readings were telling him, just to make sure her recovery was - indeed - as quick as it seemed. Perhaps she had a very strong reason to live, and her body released endorphins to bridge the pain? Ah, yes. She is a mother... Or at least she has given birth. Twice, I believe.

"Crew morale is, admittedly, at the mercy of the winds at this point, but we cling to hope, and we have new proof of the existence of the enemy. There had been doubt, back then, but now, there is none. This new enemy to the Federation has usurped the power of Starfleet Command, and an unknown number of other political factions in the Galaxy. You will be provided reports upon request, have no worry."

Pausing, Lucan put away his tricorder. "Would you attempt to stand for me, please? I can tell you about the state of your body while you try to get back on your feet. Don't worry, if your hold on the biobed slips, I'll catch you. Just take it slowly..."

He held out a tattooed hand for her to hold on to, if she felt that she needed it. Meanwhile, he watched her, and told her about all the things they had to do in order to save her life.


OOC: I figured I'd let you list the replacement organs Lucan tells her about in her thoughts, and you can have her react to it all in your post? Let me know if you have any questions. :)

Re: Day 02 [1600 hrs.] Blissful Ignorance to Hard Reality

Reply #8
[PO1 Lillee t’Jellaieu] | Main Sickbay | Deck 11 | USS Theurgy ] Attn: @Auctor Lucan

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Dizzy, irritated and still more than a little frightened, Lillee listened with forced patience as the doctor and his nurse talked. Under normal circumstances, she might’ve wondered at how a Fire-be-damned supermodel became a doctor, but right now, she didn’t care. She wanted answers, she wanted to get the hell off the bed, and more than anything, Lillee wanted to hold her kids. The private realisation that her children must be lightyears distant took her breath away.

Then Nicander started explaining, and Lillee paid rapt attention, clutching the biobed with one hand to keep herself steady as she listened. The doctor’s explanation was vague but adequate under the circumstances, and it did at least give some order to everything. The Theurgy was still rogue all this time later, having somehow escaped Starfleet’s dogged pursuit. There, at least, was certainty. Even so, Lillee instinctively distrusted Nicander’s story about Starfleet Command, just as she’d distrusted Captain Ives’ story when the Theurgy had been fleeing Sol. It simply felt wrong, insane, to believe that Command, the place where Lillee had been working for years, had secretly been subverted.

Of course, once upon a time she would’ve said the same thing about the Romulan government before some freak human clone murdered the entire Senate. If it could happen on Romulus, under the noses of the most fearsome intelligence agency in known space, why not Earth?

Pausing, Lucan put away his tricorder. "Would you attempt to stand for me, please? I can tell you about the state of your body while you try to get back on your feet. Don't worry, if your hold on the biobed slips, I'll catch you. Just take it slowly..."

“I am quite alright,” Lillee answered with a quiet, cutting tone, eyeing the proferred hand with scorn. She was proving a poor guest in this man’s care, to be sure, but Lillee wasn’t in the mood for niceties. Instead, with one hand holding onto the biobed tightly, she allowed her thighs to slide off the biobed until her bare toes touched the deck. Then, without hesitation or preparation, she pushed off the biobed entirely.

“As you can see, I am quite...ah...alright,” Lillee grumbled, holding onto the bed for support with one hand as she attempted to keep her balance. Not caring in the slightest about Nicander’s presence, she hiked up her smock to her waist, examining her traitorous legs. Contrary to how they felt, her thighs were as shapely and toned as they’d ever been, although there were still the tell-tale signs of scars on both thighs, the visible damage ringing all the way around both legs, both burns and cuts. The scarring could be removed easily enough, but even so, what in Eisn’s name had happened to her!?

Then, Nicander started talking again, describing her injuries with gentle sympathy. A smashed pelvis, broken right leg, fractured tibia,  fractured ribs. Catastrophic damage to her arteries that required reconstruction, then subsequent damage to her heart, which required even more repair, both through cloned tissue and a temporary pacemaker that had since been removed. A completely collapsed right lung that necessitated the extreme measure of cloning the entire organ. A horrifying level of blood loss that made her especially difficult to treat, since Lillee’s blood type was exclusive to Romulans and not easily available in Federation space.

“I owe you my life,” Lillee finally said faintly after Nicander finished, smiling weakly at the far-too-pretty doctor. “Regardless of whether you healed me to coerce me, or simply out of compassion, thank you, Doctor.”

Re: Day 02 [1600 hrs.] Blissful Ignorance to Hard Reality

Reply #9
[ Dr. Nicander | Recovery Ward | Main Sickbay | Deck 11 | Vector 02 | USS Theurgy ] Attn: @Griff 
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When the Romulan woman had almost fallen, Nicander had stepped closer, but there had been no need for his assistance. Therefore, she stepped back again, his review of her injuries continuing. Even if he saw how she exposed and examined her own legs, he'd been careful not to stare. Not just because it would be impolite and unprofessional, but because he didn't wish to incite the interest of the thing inside him - to have the nameless darkness take an interest and begin to compel his actions. As little as it happened after the battle of Starbase 84, Lucan still didn't want to give it any excuses.

Still, the glimpse had been quite rewarding in how the Petty Officer was quite a ravishing Romulan.

What gave Lucan pause, however, was her comment when he'd finished talking about her surgeries.

"Coerce you?" he asked, chuckling and returning that smile. "By the winds, what would we coerce you to do? No, Petty Officer, this is our duty, to treat the crew and anyone in need. It is a part of the oath we all swore at the Academy. I'd like to say we treated you out of compassion, of course, but that would only be a half-truth. Your gratitude is, of course, appreciated, and while you think you owe me and my staff your life. None of us think you're indebted. "

A slight frown touched his brow as he looked at the skin of her arm - already having noticed the marks on her legs before - studied the remaining bruising. "It would seem that you've not had the residual scarring removed yet," he said, and looked away to run a finger over the touch-screen on the biobed, scrolling further down in her journal. "Ah, yes, you were scheduled for final dermal regeneration treatment later today, but with the number of new patients that just came in, it seems like Nurse Jovela had to cancel that session. But..."

Looking at the chronometer, his light frown of concern still remaining, Lucan continued. "I have the time to take care of your scarring now, if you like me to," he said, and then looked down into her eyes, his pale grey irises catching the artificial light. "That's entirely your prerogative, of course, if you like to keep your surface scarring or have it all removed. Some patients consider scars 'badges of honour', as the Klingons tend to call them, but as far as your health is concerned and how easily I can mend the tissues with a dermal regenerator, there is no real point in keeping them beyond 'affectional value' of some kind."

Gesturing towards one of the holoemitters in the deckhead above them, he added. "If you prefer some privacy here in the Recovery Ward, I'll just set up holographic screens to preserve your modesty, and you can ask whatever questions you may have about recent events," he added finally, before beginning to type more information into her medical journal, waiting for her decision. In truth, given how blessed the winds had been for her birth, he hoped she'd decline. Chances were that the thing inside him might stir at the sight of her. He might be overly careful, thinking along those lines, and he was weary of his own need for precautions, but if he was to truly aid the crew, and fight the thing that crawled within, he had to be careful.

Re: Day 02 [1600 hrs.] Blissful Ignorance to Hard Reality

Reply #10
[PO1 Lillee t’Jellaieu] | Main Sickbay | Deck 11 | USS Theurgy ] Attn: @Auctor Lucan

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“Oh, I am no Klingon beast who counts battle scars as a measure of worth,” Lillee laughed scornfully. “By all means, Doctor, I would like to be rid of them. They are not my first scars, although I do hope that they are my last.”

Resigned to the forthcoming tedium of the proceedure, Lillee raised her hand to the strap of her red gown, then, without conscious thought, she hesitated. It was a most strange sensation, with Lillee feeling an instinctive wrongness about exposing herself in front of the doctor. It had no basis in logic or emotion, no rational basis whatsoever, but Lillee felt it nonetheless, that paralysing unease.

Of course, it was patently ridiculous. The doctor had been a perfect professional in the last few minutes, and just like all other Starfleet doctors, almost certainly a kind and gentle soul. The man’s slight tension probably had its roots in his other pressing duties, yet even so, he was offering to take time out of his busy schedule to ease her mind and heal her skin. He was all Water too, so adorably charming in a way.

So why, with those grey eyes upon her, did Lillee hesitate to undress? He would hardly be the first doctor she’d done it for. She had even done it with her squadron mates all the time in the locker rooms, both alongside her Romulan comrades before her defection and her Starfleet comrades during the Dominion War. Modesty had no place in the military, yet for all that, Lillee felt deeply uncomfortable at the thought of removing her only layer of protection, the silky red medical gown.

This is ridiculous. Shaking off those silly thoughts as an odd psychological remnant of her long sleep, or some symptom of her severe and unexpected displacement, Lillee waited for Nicander to activate the holographic privacy screen before she unstrapped the gown at her neckline. Just as it was designed to, the gown opened easily at the front, revealing Lillee’s full slender form, scars and all. Pretending not to care, Lillee took the gown off entirely, folding it neatly on the biobed before easing herself back onto the bed as well. Her legs had grown increasingly wobbly since she stood up, and a small break of sitting on the biobed seemed in order.

“Doctor, assuming that what you say is true,” Lillee said cautiously as the man worked, “who is this enemy? What do they desire? Is it mere conquest, or something worse?” She paused, her thoughts turning distant. “Have they infltrated ch’Rihan...I mean, Romulus? Do they pursue you still?”

Re: Day 02 [1600 hrs.] Blissful Ignorance to Hard Reality

Reply #11
[ Dr. Nicander | Recovery Ward | Main Sickbay | Deck 11 | Vector 02 | USS Theurgy ] Attn: @Griff 
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When the Romulan decided to accept his offer to have her scarring removed, Lucan just nodded and finished with her medical journal, but in his mind, he regretted his idea - not having immediately realised what kind of danger he'd subjected her to. He told himself to ignore the notions that the darkness stirred, how something coiled in the abyss of his soul, since it was not the same after Heather restored him. He was merely worried, knowing that had happened before, and dreading that it might happen again.

Once they were screened off, effectively making the biobed sit in a private ward with a closed door, Lucan resorted to his usual professionalism in his bedside manner. This, despite the obvious attractiveness of the Romulan, which served to be distracting enough even without the risk of peril. With dispassionate deftness, Lucan picked up the sanitised regenerator and came to stand in front of Petty Officer t'Jellaieu. "Right arm please," he said quietly, asking her to present it to him, "and turn it over."

With the first laceration presented, he answered her question while he went to work, running the light over the marred skin. In order to not incite the beast inside, he did not glance towards her torso, even if the overhead light made it evident how her chest rose and fell just so... "Assuming what I say it is true - which I assure you - the prevalent theory, which has been confirmed in interrogations of a parasitically infested host, is that the parasites belong to another plane of existence, interphasic with our reality. The infested claimed that this... chaos-plane from which they originated had no name, because to label it would be to try and bring order to it, so we call it 'the nameless darkness' since that's what how the infested described it. The other arm please."

Having finished with the first arm, Lucan stepped around to her other side and inspected the skin of the second one. "As for what it said about their ambitions, well," he paused while he found a small cut on the inside of her bicep, treating it with his medical instrument and keeping his eyes from wandering. "She called us a wound, festering upon the creation in which we live and breathe. Societies, order and civilisations seem to be abominations of order, and they likely think us the spreading infection. Yet they seek not only to tear down what we've built, but to feed this galaxy to their chaos-realm. In order to do this, they are... seasoning us, I suppose, for that day. My guess is that they either clear out the unsavoury parts, or they simply get rid of any opposition."

Finished, the major areas remained. "Could you lie down on your back, please. Easier to treat your torso that way," he commented, having been about to crouch down in front of her and asked her to spread her legs, but caught himself in the last moment, not keen on such a tempting pose from her end. It was difficult enough to keep his eyes from straying. Already, he thought he could sense the darkness stirring, and images of what the parasitic mind wanted to do surfaced in his thoughts. Ram the tool down her throat, sealing her windpipe shut.... Rape her whilst she suffocate.... then sodomise the corpse...

Faint as the whispers were, he still had to suppress the notions. He looked towards her face and smiled kindly to her, but it was more apologetic than anything, given her question about her native people. "My apologies, but I do not know the extent to which the infested have spread in the halls of power in these four Quadrants. We only know for a certain that Starfleet Command has been compromised, but if they exist outside our reality, this enemy, then distance might not mean anything to them. Then again, they might only have one specific entry-point. We simply do not know."

An untruth, of course. He knew quite well.

Resuming his work, Lucan laid his tattooed hand against the bare skin of her flat abdomen in the way a painter might touch his canvas to ascertain the distance from his brush. He leaned over her pelvic area - pale grey eyes following the marks and lacerations that he treated, and made sure not to linger with his gaze in areas which he mightn't look. "As for pursuit, by the winds, yes. Our new First Officer has claimed that there is a strong possibility that the Admiral leading Task Force Archeron is one of the infested, and they are likely searching through this nebula right now. Could you spread your legs, please?"

Lucan walked to the end of the bed, checking on the power level of his regenerator while he waited for her to part her legs. "Ah, yes, that might be relevant. We are currently in the Azure Nebula, in hiding and conducting repairs." He leaned down between her legs, taking care of her inner thighs, which he couldn't have reached otherwise. "In this area we hide in, sensor range is poor, but there is also a lot of sirillium gas pockets to be mindful about. Oh, and the space around us is heavily radiated, so we've had to calibrate our shields to deal with that."

Once he was finished, he'd ask her to turn over. In the meantime, the whispers asked him to seduce her, to lay his mouth to her sex and sway her, to use his fingers and make her beg for more, and then... to strangle her whilst giving her what she wanted. He refused to listen, not giving the notion a second thought, despite how his and the demon's wishes were partially aligned when it came to this patient. Worst of all, he had to keep his body from responding to hers, which was getting increasingly difficult when his focus was undermined by the chaos being that still possessed him.

Re: Day 02 [1600 hrs.] Blissful Ignorance to Hard Reality

Reply #12
[PO1 Lillee t’Jellaieu] | Main Sickbay | Deck 11 | USS Theurgy ] Attn: @Auctor Lucan

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The doctor’s explanation, given softly but with the grim ring of truth, was utterly chilling. Lillee’s blood ran hot, by and large, but even she felt a shiver flow down her spine when Nicander talked of the aliens’ dimension. It all sounded so supernatural, so patently ridiculous, and yet, it still felt oh so plausible. Horribly so. Even discombobulated as she was having been frozen for months, Lillee felt her heart suggesting maybe, just maybe, it was worth paying attention to.

Not that Lillee fully believed this man after scarce minutes of conversation. She was no fool. Her mother had raised Lillee to be a better rihanna than that.

Then the doctor asked her to lie down, which Lillee did without protest, although she kept a weather eye on his gaze to ensure that his eyes did not stray, still feeling a faint, unidentifiable unease. He would hardly be the first man to be appreciative of her naked body, and while Lillee was typically flattered by such, she had no time for such nonsense now. Nicander’s warm palm on her stomach still felt powerfully intimate, intrusively so, but feeling the icy hum of the dermal regenerator, she didn’t protest.

Then he asked Lillee to spread her legs, which she definitely did not welcome. Exposing her most precious and vulnerable area to a stranger felt extraordinarily wrong, especially since it felt so different to when she had undergone pelvic exams in the past. By all the Fire of Eisn, none of those doctors had been so hot! Only after visually confirming the scars on her inner thighs did Lillee reluctantly consent, spreading her legs wide to allow access. Her pubic region was just as carefully trimmed as the day she had entered stasis, just a neat little triangle above her exposed sex, although even with Nicander all the way down there, Lillee kept an eye on his activities. She propped herself up on her elbows, examining his progress closely with her observant brown eyes.

While the doctor described the nebula, her mind strayed to a prior topic. “These monsters sound like the Borg,” she pondered quietly. “Not the specifics, of course, but by the nature of the threat itself. A great dark foe, inimical to Federation, Romulan and Klingon alike, so alien to us that they are truly evil. If the other governments knew of this threat, even the idiot Klingons would stand to and fight. My people, if they have not been infiltrated, would most definitely do so, as would the Dominion. Not all of our fates rest with the Federation.”

And then finally, reluctantly, Lillee asked the question that had burning inside her since she’d awoken. “Have you heard from loved ones inside the Federation? From Earth, from Vulcan? Starfleet likely think me a willing traitor, and my children are on Earth...”

Re: Day 02 [1600 hrs.] Blissful Ignorance to Hard Reality

Reply #13
[ Dr. Nicander | Recovery Ward | Main Sickbay | Deck 11 | Vector 02 | USS Theurgy ] Attn: @Griff 
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Oh, how tempting she was, this Romulan who spread her legs for him just so. The parasitic wishes were bubbling in his subconscious, told him she already desired him, even though he had seen her hesitation and knew she was not entirely comfortable in his presence. He was not under the illusion that the first thing she'd be inclined to do was to fornicate with her physician. Yet the darkness sought to seed both doubt and willingness to act, having been rewarded with the sight of her bare loins.

Common sense won out, because of whatever it was Heather had done to him, and he answered her question about her children, since there wasn't much to add to the former statements she'd made - all reasonable. He had merely grunted inaudibly in agreement and made sure his medical instrument did not waver from the area it was supposed to treat.

"I am afraid not. By the winds, I can't imagine how it must be like, with young ones left behind," he said with an apologetic look, his brow furrowed in concern. Finished, with the area, one side remained. "Could you lie down on your front, please?"

He remained crouched down by the end of the bed, averting his eyes and pretending to check the power cell on his medical instrument. While he did, he added, "We already know that our mission might have put our families and loved ones at risk, that they could have been persecuted or killed because of the transmission, yet the Senior Staff has deemed it unlikely. Of course, we can’t know anything with absolute certainty."

An untruth, of course. He knew this too.

Once she had turned over, he straightened, his jaw clenched. The darkness had fed his imagination, making his body stir in reaction to her bared form, but he was not about to shame himself like some adolescent in puberty by letting the patient see his condition. After all, the thing that undermined him wanted him to ravage her, to claim her where she laid, but he would have none of it. He adjusted his condition as best as he might, forcing it down one leg of his trousers and making sure his lab coat covered him whilst he moved to stand next to the biobed. Oh, but the sight was sublime, of course, but he forced his focus to remain on the treatment and his continued explanation.

"Our crew manifest is already known to the enemy. They already know who we are, and every shred of information the Federation had on us. To the best of our knowledge, Starfleet Intelligence has already screened us, our extended family and even our passing acquaintances. They have gone over our past to see where there might be breaches and leaks to our supposed allies. Your native people, Donatra’s rebel fleet, to be exact."

He caught himself almost cupping one of her buttocks with his tattooed hand, to mould it for better access to the curvature of one deep rift in her skin. He dared not do it, since it would not be constructive in his current predicament. Instead, he grabbed the far edge of the biobed and leaned over her - finding it helpful that the cold side of the bed rested against his throbbing arousal. He frowned, mortified but unable to do ought about it. He could but hope the cool metal of the biobed would settle down his condition in time.

"We have reasoned this way, that as a rare benefit to the situation as a whole, our next of kin are likely already targets by the media, so Starfleet Command can't touch them without being noticed by the public. This is what I personally cling to, this hope that those who do have faith in us still are protected by the public light - the bane of the media inadvertently being of some benefit."

The darkness was stirring still, and images of what it wished for resurfaced in his thoughts. Get on top of her, pin her down, choke her, and take that which she wants you to claim already...

Yet Nicander ignored the whispers, finding that he was actually settling down, to his great relief...

Re: Day 02 [1600 hrs.] Blissful Ignorance to Hard Reality

Reply #14
[PO1 Lillee t’Jellaieu] | Main Sickbay | Deck 11 | USS Theurgy ] Attn: @Auctor Lucan

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Lillee scowled in frustration at the physician’s inadequate response, but she reminded herself that it wasn’t his fault that he didn’t know more. She desperately yearned for more information, to know now the status of her family, right now, but it simply wasn’t possible. Oh, how she wanted to sit up, smash that doctor’s head against a bulkhead and flee, steal a fast shuttle and fly...but Lillee knew that wouldn’t help. It didn’t hurt to wonder, though. Absent-mindedly she found herself comparing the warp engines of some shuttlecraft, the maneuverability difference between that and one of the Theurgy’s fighters, although she constantly kept an eye on Nicander’s work.

When the doctor asked her to turn around, Lillee consented with great reluctance, resting her forehead on her hands as her breasts pressed with surprising comfort into the soft bed. Suddenly feeling a chill, Lillee’s petite bottom shivered, and she resisted the urge to chastise the good doctor into speeding things along. No longer able to observe him, Lillee felt astonishingly vulnerable with her rear end so exposed, an altogether highly uncomfortable position.

“Perhaps,” she finally muttered after Nicander’s reassurance about the media spotlight on their loved ones. It was a hollow comfort, and one that Lillee did not care to dwell on, especially while an unsettling man was operating on her from behind. “I am obviously not the first to be in this situation. Will I be permitted quarters? Required to stay in Sickbay? Or shall you simply put me in an escape pod and drop me near a Federation world at the next opportunity? Your captain surely cannot trust someone like me to operate her helm. Or any helm.”

Re: Day 02 [1600 hrs.] Blissful Ignorance to Hard Reality

Reply #15
[ Dr. Nicander | Recovery Ward | Main Sickbay | Deck 11 | Vector 02 | USS Theurgy ] Attn: @Griff 
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Leaning over the ravishing Romulan, Lucan methodically treated the scar tissue that laced her skin, knowing that if he gave in to the notions that the darkness whispered, he might provoke a violent reaction. Yet even though it was plain to him that she was uneasy, the thing inside him tried to cast this in doubt, and convince him that she wanted him. Reach down between her legs, press your fingers inside her. She anticipates you. Can't you see how she's already wet and willing? Why deny yourself the comfort? Surely you have earned it?

Biting his teeth together, Lucan couldn't help looking down, and for a couple of seconds, it was as if the words had spoken the truth. He imagined himself to see the artificial light reflecting against dewy folds, but then he blinked, and that was not the case any more. He dismissed the voice again, resolutely, and answered her questions instead.

"By the winds, why wouldn't the Captain trust you?" he asked in his deep voice and chuckled in a friendly manner, trying to allay her concerns. "From what I hear, your interests ought to be aligned with the rest of the crew. We all want to go home, to whatever planet we come from, to friends, family, and children, or just return to good graces in the eyes of the rest of Starfleet. The problem is, none of us can. You name as well as my own is blacklisted by Starfleet Command, and I don't mean any offence," he said and walked to the head of the biobed, standing next to her face, "but I can't help but think that... since you're Romulan... and our alleged treason is said to be that we've colluded and defected to the Romulans, added with the timing of your arrival aboard? I think it's a series of unfortunate circumstances that will be difficult to swear yourself from. Therefore, I think it might be a good idea to think the situation through. Do you want a mirror? Just ask the computer for one, and the holoemitter that made this screen will provide."

As aroused as he had been, he believed he had settled enough for the Romulan to not notice the outline within the folds of his lab coat, despite how sizeable he had been. After the brief pause of his question, he continued. "You will be given quarters as according to your rank, after you've made your way to the Quartermaster's office on Deck 10. Unfortunately, we cannot spare any shuttles right now, and we are in hiding from Task Force Archeron - the fleet sent to destroy us - so we can't risk having any shuttles departing Thea. Their warp trail would lead Admiral Sankolov - one of the infested - straight to us. Moreover, we are in a part of the Azure Nebula where there are a lot of radiation and sirillium gas pockets, so the isolation is nigh complete."

Having said this, Nicander put the medical instrument away and folded his hands behind his back. "I hope I didn't miss a spot." he said, wanting her fine figure out of Sickbay sooner rather than later, "but should that be the case, you are free to return here, but as for now, after some rest and once a nurse has made sure you can move about properly, you will be free to leave us. My word of advise is that you take a long, hard look at the evidence we've gathered, and try to help, since we all want to get back to someone, or someplace."

Re: Day 02 [1600 hrs.] Blissful Ignorance to Hard Reality

Reply #16
[PO1 Lillee t’Jellaieu] | Main Sickbay | Deck 11 | USS Theurgy ] Attn: @Auctor Lucan

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When Nicander mentioned the possibility that Lillee name might’ve been deliberately used to further incriminate the Theurgy, a wave of sudden white-hot anger passed through her, her hands closing into tight fists. It was only a theory, a passing thought by the doctor, but even so, the idea of it made Lillee’s boil. Bad enough that her own people should call her traitor, for the Senate to thrice write and burn her name before the entire Empire, but for Starfleet to do it too? And for so worthless a reason!?

Still, it was all just a theoretical, and thus when Nicander moved to the top of the biobed, Lillee sat up with surprising calmness. Her strength was returning quickly, she realised gratefully, and as Lillee inspected her bare thighs, she nodded in satisfaction.

“Thank you Doctor, I don’t need a mirror,” she said politely, sweeping her long blonde hair back behind her shoulders as she considered Nicander slyly. The man truly had been the perfect professional, so why had she felt so uncomfortable with him? It wasn’t romantic or sexual attraction, both of which were the furthest things from Lillee’s mind. Oh, her unease hadn’t really affected how she treated the good doctor, but it still felt like a disservice to a kind individual.

Then he mentioned Task Force Archeron, the status of the Theurgy in the nebula and other drab minituae, all of which Lillee mentally filed without too much concern before the doctor continued. Lillee listened patiently, not bothering to put her gown back on.

“You do excellent work, Doctor Nicander, and once more, you have my sincere gratitude,” she said with a faint smile. It was about all the pleasantness she could muster under the circumstances. “I make no promises, but I shall thoroughly investigate these claims. It is all sheer insanity, but so too is the idea of an entire Theurgy-class dreadnought turning traitor, so many others like me being duped.”

Quiet for a moment, Lillee sighed, momentarily wistful. Earth was so very far away, both the supposed parasitic monsters and her twins, who lived only a few thousand kilometers away from those same monsters. Tracing a hand over her side, she shook her head, realising that sleep would be a valuable commodity in the forthcoming days.

Your advice is well taken, Doctor,” she said softly.

Re: Day 02 [1600 hrs.] Blissful Ignorance to Hard Reality

Reply #17
[ Dr. Nicander | Recovery Ward | Main Sickbay | Deck 11 | Vector 02 | USS Theurgy ] Attn: @Griff 
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Oh, if Lucan didn't know any better, he'd say the Romulan woman teased him, putting on such a flambouyant display of herself after he'd finished her treatment. While he had gotten his bodily condition under control, this final provocation had been unexpected, and he had to turn away from her - in the pretence of giving her a modicum of privacy whilst she got her gown back on. He picked up the PADD attached to her biobed and began to add what he'd just done to her medical journal.

"Duped? I think that might be a word that discredits you," he heard himself say, fending away the talons of the darkness inside by focusing on the typing of the treatment and referencing the different scarred areas. Almost as if on autopilot, if there was such a thing, he kept up his charade - this persona of lies. "The theories are plenty in the Federation News Network, suggesting several different explanations for what has happened. One of the popular ones is that Captain Ives made use of Thea, the A.I., to kill all the members of the crew that didn't defect to the Romulans alongside with him, and that the Theurgy is run by a skeleton crew. There was evidently even some speculation that there was only Ives himself left, and that the rest of the crew is merely holograms, generated by the shipwide holo-grid. So, as absurd as it may seem on the surface, the plausibility of it wasn't too hard to conjure by the media. Perhaps even informed thus by Starfleet Command."

She'd thanked him for patching her up, her soft voice oh, so compelling. There was a bit of silence, and he realised what she might be thinking, given what he'd just said.

"By the winds, before you ask, no, there is no merit to the claim of the FNN, aside from Thea, we are all of flesh and blood here."

If she wanted proof, then he wasn't sure he'd keep himself from giving her hard facts if the conversation wore on any further. "Would you be all right if I left you now, and asked a nurse to come take a look at you?" Hoping that he'd gotten her gown back on, Lucan turned back to her, breathing slowly, evenly, and gave her another smile - keeping her medical journal between them as a kind of shield.

Re: Day 02 [1600 hrs.] Blissful Ignorance to Hard Reality

Reply #18
[PO1 Lillee t’Jellaieu] | Main Sickbay | Deck 11 | USS Theurgy ] Attn: @Auctor Lucan

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Bemused by how the doctor turned around to give her privacy, a curious thing given what he had just done while she had been quite exposed, Lillee shrugged it off, instead putting her gown back on. Despite the doctor's reassurance that the hologram story was false, Lillee naturally didn't believe him. Trust nothing, verify everything. She was no Tal Shiar psychotic, but she was far from naive, either.

Now covered up once more, she nodded gratefully at the doctor. "Yes, Doctor, I shall be quite alright on my own." Lillee stood up experimentally, noting that she was more stable than even a few minutes ago, and she made a soft noise in approval at her condition. Good. She could soon leave this place and start investigating, start working, start figuring out what in Eisn’s fire was happening.

Even so, after stretching a little, Lillee offered the kind doctor a smile when he turned back around. Oh stars, there it was again! That little flip of unease in her stomach, that instinctive unease...why? It wasn’t attraction or arousal, certainly. She truly didn’t feel safe with this man...but why!? Her minimal training in the Vulcan disciplines certainly shouldn’t be the cause, not when Nicander seemed like such a lovely, enchanting individual.

Thus intrigued, Lillee chose to face the problem directly. “If time permits, Doctor,” Lillee said with a friendly look in her eye, “I would welcome your company for lunch at some point. You would be able to sample Rihannsu cuisine with a Rihanna, a rare culinary experience for Federation species, and we could talk more of your ordeal since fleeing Earth.”

And I can try to discern whatever you have not told me, she thought behind the pleasant smile.

Re: Day 02 [1600 hrs.] Blissful Ignorance to Hard Reality

Reply #19
[ Dr. Nicander | Recovery Ward | Main Sickbay | Deck 11 | Vector 02 | USS Theurgy ] Attn: @Griff 
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Relieved that the beautiful woman of the Romulan variety finally got her gown on, Lucan took a deep breath, listening to her suggestion.

By the winds, grant me mercy, he thought, when he found himself proposed to see her off duty. It was certainly the last thing he wished to do, given how this particular woman seemed to tease a reaction from the darkness inside. She had not suggested a specific point in time to meet her, however, which might grant him a means to escape the occasion. With his smile firmly in place, he chuckled and shook his head.

"Regrettaly, merely as fellow officers, but of course, I would be delighted to see you. You see, as Chief Medical Officer, and you being my patient, it is a breach of protocol for anything... extra-curricular." That being said, he hoped to end the conversation. "I wish you well, Lillee t'Jellaieu, and I hope you will find merit in our mission."

- FIN

 
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