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Day 03 [1600 hrs.] Did we escape?

[ Lt. JG Azrin Ryn | Main Sickbay | Deck 11 | Vector 2 | USS Theurgy ] Attn: @Auctor Lucan

She remembered smelling smoke. Never something one wanted to find on a starship at all, much less in the small enclosed spaces of a Jefferies tube. Azrin remembered crawling towards that faint acidic smell as fast as her calloused hands and knees could take her, interrupted only by the wayward, oft hoped for wish that Starfleet would add optional padded gloves and kneepads to the standard uniform. She remembered pressing a palm to the junction that was the source of her nose’s discomfort, feeling for heat that would reveal a fire in the components behind the panel.

The smells of burning plastic and conductor alloys were so prevalent in her mind, but the details of the work she’d done were annoyingly vague. That annoyed her in ways Azrin couldn’t quite put words to, running circles around her brain in vain search of the technical constants that ordered her life. Recalibrate… she’d been recalibrating something…

She remembered someone shouting through her combadge, a warning echoing around the tube so completely that she couldn’t even tell who was speaking. “Get... Jefferies tube… power buildup… conduit… get out!” But she couldn’t leave, not until she finished recalibrating… the feedback sensors! So the computer could regulate the antimatter flow. It was too dangerous to go to warp without them, the computer had automatically taken the drive offline. The control relays that maintained the sensors had been knocked out during the last hit…

A gasp escaped her lips and if there was a monitor somewhere reading her heartbeat, what had once been steady beeps would have sped up in an instant. Starfleet was attacking them! Starfleet was… attacking them? Her body felt stiff and heavy, so Azrin decided to focus on the disturbing thought that had woken her instead. She still didn’t know exactly what had been going on. While rushing around engineering listening to shouts from the others and the bits of communication overheard from the bridge’s comms, Azrin had pieced together a vague and rather insane tale about how Command had been compromised by some aliens, who were now trying to destroy the Theurgy for figuring it out. If it hadn’t been for the very real alerts popping up on the consoles and the shaking of the ship’s superstructure from the attacks, Azrin might have thought they were being punked.

As her memories returned, so did the urgency of the situation, which was what finally convinced her to leave the relative comfort of sleep behind. When her eyes did finally open, the muted blue-gray of her irises were only visible for a moment before Azrin squeezed them shut again in response to the lights above. The trill hissed lightly in discomfort as she tried to slowly open her eyes again. She’d been in a Jefferies tube? A damaged smokey tube. They weren’t this bright. Which meant… ah crap. When her eyes finally adjusted and everything came into focus, Azrin’s suspicions were proven correct. Sickbay.

“Did we make it to warp?” She asked the air – or anyone around to listen – and was surprised to find that her voice was hoarse and scratchy. A few coughs tried her best to clear out the dust of disuse, and Azrin quickly regretted that. Contracting the muscles in her abdomen hurt. Then everything hurt, like her brain had finally finished its recalibration sequence and decided to start sending her information again. “What happened? I fixed it right?” She had to have finished, even if her memory was annoyingly vague on that part, because if she hadn’t finished then they couldn’t have gone to warp, and if they hadn’t gone to warp…

“Shit!” Azrin propped herself up on her elbows to get a look around. That revealed a stronger pain in her abdomen, right near where the symbiont was. She would have worried about that, but at the moment she was more concerned that they’d been captured by whatever aliens had taken over Starfleet. Thankfully, it did look like the Theurgy’s sickbay. When Azrin craned her neck around to get a look at the monitor behind her, finding the ship’s name was nearly printed at the bottom, right where it should be. “Ok.” Azrin fell back onto the bed. “False alarm. All good. Unless the symbiosis commission is coming to kill me, because you should not hurt like that.”

She was still alive and on the Theurgy, so it stood to reason that they’d gotten to warp. But Azrin was an engineer. When things worked, she liked confirmation. “I’m talking to myself, aren’t I?”

Re: Day 3 [1600 hrs.] Did we escape?

Reply #1
[ Vinata Vojona | Recovery Ward | Main Sickbay | Deck 12 | Vector 02 | USS Theurgy ] Attn: @rae
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In the hallways of sickbay, at the Head Nurse's duty station, Vinata Vojona had been going through the assignments after the latest round in the PCU when the console chirped - signifying that someone had woken up after surgery.

Vinata had not noticed at first, finding himself debating whether or not he should approach V-Nine with his request to be returned to his natural Ovri biology again. After the surgical android had been reassembled in the wake of the battle, Vinata had been relieved to find that the Savi creation was still among them, and it may have been a bit of a selfish thing to have wished that the android was going to be repaired, but V-Nine was the only one able to return him to what he used to be. Well, that may not have been entirely true, since many medical officers aboard the Theurgy had been able to pull off medical miracles. Doctor Nicander had managed to save the Ash'reem named Sarresh Morali from the brink of certain death with a highly unorthodox method, not to mention the Kzin named Maryk - whom regrettably hadn't survived the Battle of the Houses. Such an odd name to give confrontation, but the Klingons seem keen on sticking names to strife for the sake of bravado...

Having been watching the android from a distance, debating whether he'd finally approach V-Nine and make his request after more than a month of soul-searching, Vinata was pulled from his thoughts by the chirp at last, and he blinked before he lowered his large, black eyes to his console. Oh, dear... It's junior lieutenant Ryn.

Setting a brisk pace with his digitigrade legs, Vinata smoothed the skirt variant of his uniform over his hips and abdomen. It didn't take long for him to enter the recovery ward and settle his eyes on the biobed that the Trill occupied. A pale, opaque holo-screen had been raised around the biobed to lend the patient some quietude and privacy - creating a personal ward for her. To call it a forcefield may have been a misnomer because one could simply step right through it - made entirely of photons as it was - and Vinata did exactly that. When he passed through the screen, his eyes settled on the Trill and he gave the patient a smile.

"Good afternoon, Lieutenant Ryn," he chirred and picked up the medical journal from the foot of the biobed. "I'm Nurse Vojona. Please, lie back and rest. You are in great need of recovery after what you've been through. There is, however, no cause for concern."

Looking at the readings on the screen next to the biobed and the notes from the latest round in Ryn's journal, Vinata continued. "It appears you may make a full recovery, as long as you take things slow and don't push yourself too hard too quickly," he said, almost shaking his head at the length of the surgical log on the screen of the PADD, seeing how much had been done to spare the life of both the Trill and the symbiont. Realising that the woman was an original member of the Theurgy crew, having been in stasis for such a long time, Vinata knew that there would be a lot for the woman to take in. There was little to be done in regard to sparing her from facing the reality of her circumstances, but Vinata would try to ease her into it.

"I know this may be difficult for you to come to terms with, but hear me out," he said, coming to stand next to the biobed with the journal in his four-fingered hands. "The records say you were caught in an explosion in a Jefferies tube, and while I don't know how much you remember, it is suggested that you risked your life for sake of the Theurgy managing to escape her pursuers. Well, Thea and the crew did get away... and a lot has happened since then. It was only yesterday that a method to save your life - as well as your symbiont's - was found. Up until then, for more than six months, you have been in cryogenic stasis."

Knowing that the patient may have to digest the ramifications of what Vinata had just told her, he fell silent then, but he remained by her side, ready to answer any questions she might have before the matter of her recovery had to be addressed more thoroughly. Listening, Vinata couldn't help but marvel at the fact that the Trill was going to live on, but he was also worried about how she would handle the news of all the people Thea had lost since she fled Earth - many of whom the Trill might have come to know dearly.

Re: Day 3 [1600 hrs.] Did we escape?

Reply #2
[ Lt. JG Azrin Ryn | Recovery Ward | Main Sickbay | Deck 12 | Vector 02 | USS Theurgy ] Attn: @Auctor Lucan

For the past few minutes, Azrin has been occupying herself with the forcefield she’d – belatedly – discovered surrounding her biobed. She had never considered herself a model patient. The doctors who had supervised her joining had called her a nightmare, something that Azrin considered quite unfair, since a lot of people got a bit confused and crazy after joining. But she had to admit, staying in bed for an extended amount of time wasn’t something she normally enjoyed. At the moment, the only reason she stayed was because getting up sounded painful.

Anyway, the forcefield. It didn’t take her very long to doubt that conclusion. For one, Azrin had already determined that she was still on the Theurgy, so why would they lock her into an artificial cubby around a biobed? Two, there was something… off about the alleged forcefield. Azrin squinted as she stared at it, her whole face scrunching up as she tried to get her brain back in gear. She knew how forcefields worked, finding out the problem should have been so easy. She seriously debated throwing something at it to find out what would happen, but there was nothing in easy reach. A consideration to use her hospital gown was also rejected. Azrin didn’t quite fancy ending up naked. Eventually, it clicked. It was silent. Forcefields weren’t, the power running through the emitters was always accompanied by the faint hiss of crackling energy. Just a hologram, she decided, right as someone walked straight through the area she was looking at, nearly scaring Azrin right out of the bed.

“There is someone here!” She blurted out in relief and immediately chided herself for it. They weren’t going to leave sickbay unmanned with patients in here. After that outburst, a conscious decision was made to keep her mouth shut, blue eyes following the nurse as he spoke. Hopefully he could fill the annoying blanks in her memory. Azrin didn’t recognize him, but that wasn’t particularly surprising. Until now, she’d managed to stay away from sickbay for the entirety of her tour aboard the Theurgy, nearly a year. Barely any of the medical staff was known to her. The nurse’s species was equally unknown to her, though Azrin’s eyes naturally drifted to the pattern of epidermal spots doing down his head and neck. Similar to her own, though scaled up.

Once suggested, laying down sounded like a wonderful idea. The pain in her gut had settled to a persistent ache as she remained still, but her slight jerk at Vojona’s entrance had brought the sharper pain back. No cause for concern, which was good to hear. And a full recovery, so the Symbiosis Commission wasn’t going to come for her either. The assurance ringing in her ears, Azrin let her back rest on the bed again, trying her best to relax. Unfortunately, that decision didn’t last for long.

"I know this may be difficult for you to come to terms with, but hear me out." That only served to peak her anxiety. Nothing good ever started with a phrase like that. But as the nurse kept talking, everything Vojona said tracked. While she didn’t quite remember said explosion, Azrin did remember being in a Jefferies tube. She’s already determined that they’d escaped, already realized the injury had something to do with the symbiont. None of that was stressful, and Azrin’s skepticism probably showed on her face, until…

“Six months!” The words burst from her lips, the determination to keep quiet and listen dissipating in an instant at the revelation. Her other good intentions fell along with it as Azrin pushing herself to sitting once more, a wince crossing her face as that persistent pain made itself known again. Her arms shook a bit, not quite strong enough to take her weight. “How has it been six months? What kind of explosion would take a six month-“

Replaced the blown optical conduit. Recalibrated the frequency links. All that was left was to reboot the optical subprocessor. Almost there. Almost there. Once the subprocessor was online she could key in the restart for the newly calibrated feedback sensors. The smoke was getting stronger now. Which didn’t make any sense, because she’d replaced the conduit. There was still a voice coming out of her combadge, tiny and insignificant in the face of her focus. “I’m almost finished!” She’d been repeating that. Azrin didn’t have to listen to the comm if her answer was going to be the same. There! Just a few more keystrokes and they would be good. “I’m almost-“

A hand instinctively raised to rub her temple as the fog cleared a bit more, causing Azrin to fall back on the biobed by accident. “That couldn’t have been from the injector sensors,” she said halfheartedly, talking to herself now, not the nurse. “I would have seen that. My tricorder would have pegged it. A nearby power conduit maybe?” She trailed off again, gaze glued to the ceiling as though it held the story on what had happened next. “Six months… it’s almost my birthday.” Or maybe it was past her birthday. Even if it was, she could still have a party. Azrin fixated on that, always searching for the one happy thing in the worst situation. “But why am I still here? Not a Starbase medical center or back to the Symbiosis Commission doctors on Trill…” Surely they could have treated her better. “Wait. Are we still on the run?”

Re: Day 3 [1600 hrs.] Did we escape?

Reply #3
[ Vinata Vojona | Recovery Ward | Main Sickbay | Deck 12 | Vector 02 | USS Theurgy ] Attn: @rae
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While he had some answers, Vinata wouldn't be able to answer all of them since he was unfamiliar with the details surrounding the patient's situation prior to her injury. The exclamation had Vinata blink with his big, black eyes and he took a deep breath, his breasts rising and falling before before he attempted to give some of the answers he could.

"Yes, I am afraid that the mission isn't over," he chirred, "though I realise that by the time you were injured, the mission statement about the infestation of Starfleet Command hadn't even been issued by Captain Ives. By that time, you were trying to survive, fleeing from Admiral Sankolov's task force. It wasn't until Thea reached the Mahéwa System in the Borderlands, and managed to shake of pursuit, that the mission to spread the truth about what happened was officially formalised. Since then, this crew have been fighting against all odds and without any allies to survive, and to expose the parasites that have possessed Starfleet Command. It wasn't until very recently that we did find allies, in the crew of the USS Oneida and the Klingon Empire."

To supplement what he'd just said, Vinata gestured and made a quick addendum, realising that situational awareness might be comforting for the engineer. "The ship is currently orbiting Qo'noS, having supported Chancellor Martok against an usurper that had been misled by the Infested. We now have the full support of the Klingon High Council, the Empire backing our word, but even as we wish to head for Federation space and gain more allies... the Praetor had declared war against both the Empire and the Federation, and she is heading for the Klingon border with her fleet, driving Donatra's forces ahead of her. Reports say we have just over three weeks until the Romulans reach the border, and there might be a chance that Donatra and Martok will join forces there."

Not yet going into what was in the medical journal, Vinata realised that what he'd said might be worrisome, so he raised his hands in a calming gesture. "The ship is under repairs, and the crew is resting as best as it might. Shoreleave to Qo'nos has been granted when we are off duty, and you will have time to rest and recover. You have a lot of reports to read while you do so, so please, be mindful. Both you and your symbiont need some time."

Vinata fell silent then, letting the Trill ask any questions she might have, and he'd answer as best as he might.

Re: Day 3 [1600 hrs.] Did we escape?

Reply #4
[ Lt. JG Azrin Ryn | Recovery Ward | Main Sickbay | Deck 12 | Vector 02 | USS Theurgy ] Attn: @Auctor Lucan

“The Infested,” she repeated, musing over the name as though trying it on for size. “Cool name. Appropriately creepy.” Azrin’s voice had taken on a detached quality, oddly calm yet not quite there. Meanwhile, her brain was in chaos. She was still heavily fixated on her six month absence. In the grand scheme of things, Azrin knew that six months wasn’t that long, but right now it felt like an eternity. First the immediate panic of one who had overslept for an important event, immediately overtaken by the dreaded realization that the event was already over.

Finally, she was taking Vojona’s advice and remaining on her back on the biobed. The constant ups and downs of the past few minutes had increased the pain enough that Azrin could no longer ignore it in flights of emotion. She tilted her head instead, letting her eyes wander across the privacy screen for a bit before returning her attention to the nurse. She tried – truly, she did – to order her thoughts to make the questions easier for him to answer, but it wasn’t long before they got away from her again. There was too much to catch up on. “After all this time there’s only one starship that believes us?” She’d never heard of the USS Oneida either. “Don’t we have proof? Isn’t that why they suddenly started attacking us? Shouldn’t we be blasting that out on every comm frequency there is? The Klingons believe us and the rest of Starfleet doesn’t.” Go Klingons? Objectively, Azrin knew that all of these questions were – to use an outdated phrase – above her paygrade. The Captain and senior staff would have reasons for everything they did, none of which was the business of one lowly propulsion engineer. But she was asking anyway, the questions escaping her lips from the moment they entered her head. “And now there’s going to be a war!?”

She was quiet for a few moments after that final outburst, trying to calm herself down again. “Sorry, that’s probably all in those reports you mentioned.” Azrin couldn’t focus, her fingers tapping patterns on the biobed to let out some of that nervous energy. “Where’s Commander Solkar?” she asked, abruptly switching subjects to seek out the chief engineer. “I need- I really need to do something.” He would probably tell her that the request was illogical and that she shouldn’t leave sickbay yet. Her last host had been a doctor, but even without Dezra’s memories, Azrin would have had enough sense to know that pain in the abdomen was bad – especially for joined Trill. If not Solkar, maybe ops would give her some broken tricorders she could repair from this biobed.

Re: Day 3 [1600 hrs.] Did we escape?

Reply #5
[ Vinata Vojona | Recovery Ward | Main Sickbay | Deck 12 | Vector 02 | USS Theurgy ] Attn: @rae
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It turned out the patient had quite a lot of questions, but since she was lying back and taking it easy as instructed, Vinata gladly indulged her. He did so by making sure she was covered up properly by the blanket, keeping her and the symbiont warm, finishing the notes in her journal and syncing the data with the medical database and the biobed. While he spoke, he kept a pleasant smile, and he made a mental note to replicate a fitting Trill soup and some water for the patient when he was done talking.

"All you need to 'do' now is rest," he chirred, making air-quotes in the popular fashion he'd picked up at the Academy, "until you are cleared to leave the ward. Before I answer your questions - to the best of my abilities - I would like to inform you why it is important that you rest. See, in the explosion, a piece of metal embedded itself in your abdomen, also piercing the symbiont. The nervous system for the symbiont, to be exact. By the time you were transported to sickbay, it was already showing signs of acute distress. Doctor Nicander made the judgement call that... since the surgery of both you and the symbiont would be too delicate and time consuming, and the symbiont would die before the surgical team could possibly save it, you were put into stasis. This, until a time where a method to save the both of you could be found. Your case was reviewed at times through the months since then, but given the state of the symbiont, it looked like any procedure would just let one of you live."

Having reviewed the journal and found Nicander's name there, Vinata considered speaking about what had become of the Chief Medical Officer... but that was a different conversation altogether. "That was, until new methods were made available to us, through the medical database of an android that now serve aboard the ship. She - V-Nine - found a way to keep the symbiont in animated suspension while your own injuries could be treated, using a form of localised stasis field that she projected through one of her fingers, actually. The pain you feel now is the soreness of the extensive abdominal surgery you have undergone, and if you do not relax and take it easy, that soreness might become actual tears in your tissues instead."

With that said, Vinata hoped the Trill had heeded her, and she could give some consideration to the other questions she'd posed. "Starfleet Command and Admiral Sankolov vilified Thea, convincing all ships that she could hijack the systems of any starships that opened a subspace channel to her, and made it clear that any attempt to communicate with the Theurgy would be at the penalty of treason. The argument we've heard through media news channels was that they were 'mitigating the risk that the Theurgy would collect more ships'. This, after killing all the organic crews aboard with the use of the ship computers. Add upon that, the perpetually sustained smear campaign of this ship and its Captain, and Command's suggestion that Thea was now run by holograms of the original crew, and that it could be that only the Captain was still alive. Preposterous things for us, but after six months of lying, it might be hard to convince anyone that they have been fooled, since that would make them... well fools."

Vinata thought of his sister, knowing that her name might be one that the Infested knew, and hoped she would make it safely to Dejino with her egg. He continued to speak, however, while adjusting Ryn's pillow. "Several attempts to spread the truth have been made, either being suppressed or falling on deaf ears - the faith in Starfleet quite complete. Things are starting to change now, after many battles, but indeed... the Romulans have declared war against the Federation and the Klingon Empire both. The Praetor, another Infested, have bombed Paris. Thalaron radiation. The President barely made it out, along with some of the Federation council. I hear... that we have an ally working closely with the President, but that information is too sensitive to be spread around, lest that ally could be compromised."

Taking a deep breath, Vinata then accessed a control panel on the wall above Ryn's head. "Solkar... Ah, yes, he was the Chief Engineer, right? Unfortunately, he didn't make it to the Mahéwa System. Killed in action. I'm sorry," Vinata chirred quietly in sympathy for the Trill, and then tried to find some positive news, looking at the old rosters of the Engineering Department and whom of them Ryn had served with. "Ah, he was succeeded by Chief Nolak Kalmil, whom despite his rank was given the role of Chief Engineer. Though... he is no longer with us either.... Oh! Then Commander Nicole Howard - you must know her, right?- she had recovered from her injuries so she could... Oh, um, I see here that... she's dead now as well. Hmmm... Chief O'Connell! He was Chief Engineer for quite some time, but... I am afraid he died four days ago. Klingons opposing Martok, boarding the ship... I'm so sorry, Lieutenant. I can see that there are still some faces you might know in Engineering among the lower ranks? You will find that the current Chief Engineer is Frank Arnold... whom you likely don't know."

Pausing Vinata stepped away from the console, and realised it all tied into the observation Ryn had made about 'one' starship believing them. "Actually, many whom now serve on the Theurgy will be new faces for you. I personally come from the Harbinger, and we have officers from the Resolve - the ship that was lost three years ago? - as well as the Cayuga. The Oneida had volunteers that transferred aboard to replenish our ranks as well. We've also picked up recruits from other places during our voyage, so I'd say while the original Theurgy crew are still a majority of the full roster, it's not by much."

Vinata knew it was a lot to take in, so he fell silent there, hoping he hadn't said too much...

Re: Day 03 [1600 hrs.] Did we escape?

Reply #6
[ Lt. JG Azrin Ryn | Recovery Ward | Main Sickbay | Deck 12 | Vector 02 | USS Theurgy ] Attn: @Auctor Lucan

“Laying in bed isn’t doing something,” Azrin protested instantly, before he even finished speaking. “It’s the exact opposite of doing something. There has to be something I can do from the bed. I’m begging you. My hands need to move.” It sounded whiny, which normally would have given her pause. But she needed it. Sitting here alone to stew in her thoughts, which were getting darker with every bit of information Vojona dolled out, was a recipe for insanity. Azrin had never been good at sitting still. She worked out problems while walking in circles. Or absent mindedly took apart and reassembled any small electronic in her vicinity. Sometimes she even doodled. She’d always been full of energy that needed some kind of outlet. Every single one of her previous hosts has been better at it. Sometimes she could even recreate environments that had calmed them and find moments of still contemplation for herself. But there was no way she could manage that in sickbay, not right now.

The blanket felt nice, so Azrin allowed herself to snuggle into it a bit, her fingers playing with the edges as the nurse continued. She found his smile disconcerting, considering he was recounting her near death experience. “Probably good that I didn’t get shipped back to Trill then huh? They definitely would have let me die to save the symbiont.” She’d always been fine with that rule back before. At least part of her would get to live on in the next host right? But now that it had come close to actually happening? A nervous laugh escaped her lips as she thought about it. Yeah, Azrin might need to reevaluate her acceptance of that custom. She was so preoccupied with the idea that she tuned out most of the following explanation on her injuries. She’d been hurt, noted. Don’t do things that cause pain, also noted. It also saved Vojona from a very long tangent on the android who had healed her, a topic that Azrin would have latched onto obsessively on any other day.

Azrin managed to listen in relative silence as her other questions were answered. There was really nothing to say in response to it, though she did shake her head in disgust more than once. The entire situation sounded completely nuts to her, right out of some conspiracy theorist’s handbook. So everyone thought she was dead? Or being puppeted around the ship as a hologram? Even if Thea was capable of that – and Azrin was willing to bet that she could – it still sounded absolutely crazy. Dying and moving onto the next host didn’t seem like that bad of an option now. There would never be a new host if Ryn was already written off for dead. Six months in stasis, and she’d woken up as a ghost.

“I trusted Starfleet too.” Azrin admitted quietly, having shut her eyes in pain after hearing that Paris had been bombed. An action that had no effect on her ears, unfortunately. She had gone to the Academy on Earth, then been assigned to Mars for years. Azrin had friends all over the Sol System, including Paris.

When Vojona mentioned Commander Solkar, Azrin actually sat up a little bit in hope. A few centimeters, not even enough to dislodge the blanket, which would hopefully avoid another admonishment to rest. If the nurses wouldn’t allow her something to fill the time, she’d have to start contacting people and begging. Then the news hit that Solkar was dead. And his replacement. And his replacement’s replacement. And Vojona was surprised by it. Like so many people had died at this point that it wasn’t even news anymore. “I'd say while the original Theurgy crew are still a majority of the full roster, it's not by much." He said that like it was a good thing. Like that didn’t mean that nearly half of the crew was dead.

“I did know them.” Her voice was unsteady and Azrin suddenly couldn’t look at him anymore. She turned away with a start, hissing slightly with pain as the movement pulled at her wound, curling up in a ball away from the nurse. “I think I’d like to be left alone now please.” She squeezed her eyes shut again, this time trying to keep tears from coming out, her breathing quick and uneven. This was... this was to much. As it turned out, maybe she could lay here without moving for a while. Azrin had suddenly stopped worrying about going insane.

Re: Day 3 [1600 hrs.] Did we escape?

Reply #7
[ Vinata Vojona | Recovery Ward | Main Sickbay | Deck 12 | Vector 02 | USS Theurgy ] Attn: @rae
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Chiding himself for trying to be helpful, trying to give the patient good news by finding officers she might know, Vinata shook his head and exited the crew roster with a heavy heart. The Trill's reaction was hardly surprising, since he'd done naught more than point out how many - perhaps most - of the crewmates she knew had died while she was in stasis.

"I'm sorry," was all he could say in the end, knowing there wasn't more he could do at that point to cheer up the engineer. He tried to look at it positively, that the patient had heard the worst of it right away, and that the stages of grief would be passed through more quickly, but that just felt disingenuous and crass. He had simply screwed up, the best of intentions leading to a dead end, literally.

"V-Nine will be come to see you, and tell you more about the surgery later. I'll get you some soup and water too," he said numbly, and left through the holo screen.

- FIN

 
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