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Topic: Day 15 [2100 hrs.] Hic Sunt Leones (Read 60 times) previous topic - next topic

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Day 15 [2100 hrs.] Hic Sunt Leones
STARDATE 57595.08
MARCH 25, 2381
2100 HRS.

[ Lt Cmdr Hathev | Chief Counsellor's Office, Main Sickbay | Deck 11 | USS Theurgy ] attn: @Fife

Had the circumstances been any different, Hathev would have preferred it had their appointment been scheduled for the morning. An early start would have had the benefit of allowing a greater mental clarity, primarily in the patient but also to some extent in herself, and it would have avoided the trepidation she now felt stalking the back of her mind. It was not fear, of course; such a thing was beyond and beneath her. Instead it was merely a twinge of professional concern, properly regulated, regarding the risks of the action she was to undertake.

These risks were, of course, the reason she had not arranged to meet with Mr Cross until after the end of both of their shifts. Truly such limitations held little meaning for her, with her low requirement for sleep and lack of other business to pursue, and yet nevertheless it was a prudent allowance. Should any side-effects be felt by either herself or the commander, they would have a space of ten hours to purge themselves before next they were on duty. Her logic was sound in this.

She did not expect complications. She had calculated the potential for failure, for side-effect, and for complication, running simulations of each permutation in her mind; had she considered the risks too great, she would have been forced to find another course of action. Yet she knew now better than ever the necessity of taking precautions, and with her previous miscalculations regarding the commander she considered it prudent to err on the side of caution. Her past short-sightedness could not be allowed to re-emerge here.

His request to her loomed large in her mind. Of course, she maintained her original stance on the matter: her safety was her own concern, and she would thank Mr Cross to attribute to her the intelligence to judge such things for herself. Nevertheless, she had little desire to repeat any experience even adjacent to the one she had endured when last they met. Her presence and expertise were necessary upon this ship and she could hardly perform her duty if she sustained an injury as a result of an oversight on her part -- nor should she, if she ever made so great a misstep as to cause such harm to herself or another.

Thus she found herself disquieted, unfathomably so. She trusted her simulations, of course, but there remained an element of the unknown within the commander that she found herself unable to truly account for. This was the reason for the current undertaking, after all: she did not have enough data to properly judge the man's emotional and psychological state. That the man required treatment was certain, and also that he required it urgently lest he prove himself dangerous to others, but with her current lack of information she could neither treat him correctly nor confidently advise the First Officer. This was the safest and most efficient route to such a verdict, and one which she herself had suggested -- nay, requested. She would do well to remember that.

Nevertheless, that very unknown element posed a risk she could not properly integrate into her simulations, and thus she found a high likelihood of an 8% deviance in her predictions. A not insignificant amount, especially considering the delicacy of the procedure. All she could hope was to be prepared with this foreknowledge: where before she had been certain in her judgement, now at least she was aware of its potential fault. This, and a trust of her own abilities, would have to suffice. Certainly, she had subsisted on less when last they met. It was hubris, not ignorance, that had been her fault; she would be certain to exercise proper caution on this occasion.

Despite that fault, however, any truly negative outcome had been avoided. Mr Cross seemed extremely receptive to even the most superficial of telepathy; thus she could extrapolate that he would be even more suggestive and malleable when in a full meld. Her presence in his mind would, she hoped, afford her the power necessary to prevent his slippage beneath the fear and anger once more, should such a thing be triggered. Of course, she would prefer its avoidance altogether, but considering the state she expected to find the man's psyche in, that might not be possible.

Mr Cross' mind would hardly be the well-kept archive of a traditional Vulcan, the beautifully-organised minutiae of data neutralised, classified, and stored correctly. Rather, she expected to find something more akin to an overgrown jungle, where thoughts, memories, and emotions snaked around one another in a tangled confusion, where tugging upon one thread could lead to the unravelling of feelings seemingly unconnected. It would be her duty to tease out the necessary details, ignoring the irrelevant data points retained for no other reason than because the commander lacked the mental training to discard them. It  would be an arduous task, made all the more difficult by the risk of discovering whatever triggers lay hidden beneath the foliage, traps and tripwires laid ready to spark his ire.

She could not be within his mind if he flew into a rage. That, at least, was certain. The extent of the potential damage to her own psyche, let alone to her physical form, was almost impossible to predict. Enough that she knew it would be incurred. But there was little purpose to baseless prediction and ill-informed concern, and thus she ruminated upon these thoughts only briefly. Better to prepare herself correctly for any eventuality.

Standing from her desk, Hathev unfurled the meditation mat she kept tucked neatly away in her office. She seated herself in her customary position, one in which she could remain perfectly still for hours without any discomfort. She would use this time to iron our her concerns, steeling her mind for the difficulties that lay ahead.

She completed her meditations precisely ten minutes before the commander's arrival was expected, her mind correctly calm with placid professionalism. Having performed a number of stretches to relieve any lingering tensions, she replicated a Vulcan infusion promoting clarity and telepathic fortitude. Briefly, she considered offering Cross a Vulcan brew to assist in his emotional easement, for certainly she understood from his reaction to this suggestion that it was one he was not entirely comfortable with. It was likely, therefore, that he had experienced much the same trepidation as she herself; yet of course he was ill-equipped to deal with such a thing, and thus his emotional state would likely be unbalanced even before he crossed her threshold. If she could offer anything in assistance for that it would be prudent.

However just as she considered the most relevant brew, she recalled his earlier displeasure with such teas, so strong it had resonated with him even while in the depths of his rage. Perhaps coffee, then; the recalled him enjoying the beverage at their initial meeting. Thus she replicated a cup and placed it upon the low table for his delectation, arranging it neatly in concordance with her own. Finally, she retired to the couch to await Mr Cross' arrival.
  • Last Edit: November 12, 2019, 09:20:59 PM by fiendfall
CPO Morgan Song - Engineering - Chief of Maintenance (V2) [Show/Hide]
Lt Cmdr Hathev - Counselling - Chief Counsellor [Show/Hide]
Ensign Inej 'Avi' Avirim - Security - Investigations Officer [Show/Hide]

  • Fife
  • [*][*][*][*][*][*]
  • "There's no tea in this tea!"
  • Awards: Awarded to an writer who goes through extreme, even insane measures to get an administrative project done for the sim, well beyond any kind of expectations from the GM. Awarded for participation in Part 1 of Episode 05: Courage is Fear. Awarded for participation in Part 2 of Episode 05: Courage is Fear.
Re: Day 15 [2100 hrs.] Hic Sunt Leones
Reply #1
[ Lt. Cmdr. Cross | Personal Quarters > Chief Counsellor's Office | Deck 10 > Deck 11 | Vector 02 | USS Theurgy ] Attn: @fiendfall
[Show/Hide]Cross paced nervously in his quarters, hands clasped behind his back and shoulder hunched forward as he went over things in his mind for the umpteenth time.

Following the disaster of a test that Hathev had devised, where Cross had not only started killing holograms on the holodeck but had later almost killed Hathev herself, Cross was questioning the wisdom of this whole endeavour. Seren had been the one who initially suggested having a Vulcan coach him in gaining better control of his emotions. Seren, that self-righteous Vulcan shitscale. Of course he would assume that Vulcans could fix Cross. Typical Vulcan, believing in Vulcan superiority. And Hathev, again likely feeling infallible, had nearly gotten herself killed and Cross thrown in the brig for murder after having waltzed in on his little rampage.

Cross sighed and stopped in his pacing, turning his gaze to look out the viewport of his quarters, hands still clasped behind his back. His pale eyes cast their stare out at the view beyond as Cross wondered silently what would possess someone to walk into a room where someone was going berserk. What had Hathev expected to happen? That he'd settle down instantly, and they'd sit and have some of that vile Vulcan tea and everything would be quite logical, thank you very much?

That's probably exactly what she'd thought would happen... Cross thought to himself, rolling his eyes and turning away from the view outside the ship.

"Vulcans..." Cross muttered to himself as he made his was out of the door and into the corridors beyond his quarters, heading off to the Chief Counsellor's office for their next session. At least this time she would be poking around in his head as opposed to more testing on the holodeck. Much less risk of him losing his mind and going into a rage.

He hoped...

Striding along the corridors, Cross was thankful for the fact that Main Sickbay and with it the Hathev's officer, were on the same Vector as his quarters. It saved him the hassle of heading to the transporter room, beaming to another vector, then heading from that transporter room to the office. There had been a great deal of that over the last few days, jumping from one vector to another during the course of his duties, and he was happy to not be taken apart particle by particle and reassembled for the hundredth time today. His thoughts of transporters changed suddenly as he exited the turbolift and the doors to main sickbay came into sight.

I wonder if they could site-to-site me right into her office... Cross mused for a moment, the idea of avoiding entering Sickbay proper being quite appealing. Knowing full well that he was being ridiculous, and that he would have to enter Sickbay. With a sigh and a squaring of his shoulders, Cross stepped forward through the doors ahead. He passed through Sickbay at a fast pace, eyes fixed forward like he was back on parade during his days as a Security Officer fresh out of the Academy. He ignored the puzzled greeting from the Duty Nurse and strode purposefully up to Hathev's office, his thumb pressing perhaps a bit too hard against the buzzer as if desperately pleading to be let in, lest the looming shadow that lurked somewhere within Sickbay find him first.

Thankfully, the doors before him hissed their way open before any such darkness could descend upon him, and his nodded a greeting to Hathev.

"Counsellor," Cross greet Hathev, hands still clasped behind his back so as to avoid both a fresh embarrassing attempt at the Vulcan salute as well as the risk of a handshake, and with it physical contact. The Theurgy's Chief Counsellor had been quite firm on the subject of contact following the holodeck incident, and Cross had little interest in pushing Hathev's patience. He nodded his thanks as she invited him in, and waited for the doors to close before glancing at Hathev and speaking again. "How are you feeling? I hope you neck isn't still painful..." Cross hesitated, still feeling awash with the shake of nearly killing the ship's diminutive Chief Counsellor. "If you need more time before  we perform the meld..." Cross trailed off, knowing it was a weak attempt to delay the inevitable. He had little choice but to go through with the mind meld, and supposed the Humans would call what he was doing "grasping at straws". Another stupid Human expression. What fucking good would a straw do him right now?
Lt. Cmdr. Cross     [Show/Hide]Ensign Isel "Foxfire" Nix     [Show/Hide]PO1 Scruffy LeBlanc      [Show/Hide]

Re: Day 15 [2100 hrs.] Hic Sunt Leones
Reply #2
[ Lt Cmdr Hathev | Chief Counsellor's Office, Main Sickbay | Deck 11 | USS Theurgy ] attn: @Fife

The commander arrived with a punctuality that befitted him, and Hathev stood and  received him into her office graciously. He seemed on-edge as he entered, hands kept behind his back likely in an attempt to exercise a semblance of control over his being, his movements awkward in their mechanical jerkiness. Hathev ushered him to the couch; they would begin by relieving some of that tension, the nerves the man no doubt felt.

'Please, be seated,' she said, delaying answer of his question until they were both situated comfortably. 'I am quite well, you need not concern yourself,' she said. The reminder of her failure in judgement was unwelcome, and she had little desire to linger upon the subject.

Cross' own attempt at delay she paid no attention to; she understood it for what it was. Instead, she sipped her tea, the brew bitter and leafy upon her tongue, and simply observed Cross. The man's earlier agitation had eased somewhat, but the tension remained, the awkwardness prevalent in his countenance and posture just as it was in his manner of speech.

'What of yourself?'
she asked, placing her mug carefully back upon the glass table. 'You have suffered no lasting effects?' Such a thing would throw her predictions even further away from accuracy if he had indeed experienced any psychological change or mutation since their last meeting, whether as a result or as a coincidence. Additionally, she did not like to consider the possibility of having caused further mental disturbance, unintentional though it may have been; her purpose here was to assist, not hinder, and Mr Cross' own efforts in self-control had been remarkable even before he came under her tutelage. If she had worsened his state in any way, she would have committed a much worse failure than a simple error in judgement.

There were a number of other matters of business to attend to before the procedure could commence, and Hathev turned to them now: 'Have you any experience with mind melds, Mr Cross?' An inefficient way of asking if he knew what he was doing, yet she deemed it necessary to prioritise the man's comfort over her own desire for efficiency. In any case, it was an important question that she posed. Melds were never one-sided, and although stronger telepaths could effectively navigate through someone else's mind, showing or viewing as they desired without much input or assistance from the partner, Hathev herself required more of an equal balance. She was more practiced at projection than acquisition, and thus the latter would necessitate more contribution from the other participant. In short, if Cross did not show her something, she would have difficulty arranging its viewing by herself.

She explained this. 'You will have the greater part of the control; it will be at your discretion what you wish to show me. I will take an active role in seeking out data; yet if you do not wish a thing to be seen, you need only block the viewing of it. I will respect your boundaries in this, as I endeavour to do in all things.' She fixed him with her gaze seriously. 'This means the usefulness of this procedure is entirely in your hands. I would urge you to show me anything and everything which you deem to be of relevance, and allow the viewing of as much as you are able. It would be most unfortunate if we were to fail at this juncture over something so simple as an ineffective meld.'

She left the consequences for a useless meld unsaid; in truth, this was their last recourse. Should this fail, for any reason, she did not know what her next move would be. A report to the Executive Officer, most likely; and yet her earlier reluctance to do such a thing remained.

No matter. Such concerns were irrelevant for the current time; she could only hope they would remain so indefinitely.

Finishing her tea, she rose from the couch and crossed to the bookshelf; here, she extracted a traditional diffuser, administering a few drops of an oil chosen for its ability to promote tranquility and clearheadedness. She placed it upon the desk that it might mist the room with the fresh scent. Next, she dimmed the lights slightly, that the brightness did not prove detrimental to the initial establishing of the meld. Combined with Cross' nervousness, such things might prove distracting to him, and she wished to control the environment as much as was in her capacity.

The final preparations made, she returned to the couch, sitting sideways that she might meet Cross' eyes squarely.

'Before we begin, have you any questions?' Better to air and answer any such uncertainties now than to have them surface during the meld, when she would be far less able to deal with them. Once she was within his mind, she could not afford either of them to be thrown off-balance by simple misunderstanding; her estimated 8% deviation was enough risk in itself.

'Well, then,' she said, indulging in a few filler words that Cross might have time to finish his mental preparations, 'shall we begin?'
CPO Morgan Song - Engineering - Chief of Maintenance (V2) [Show/Hide]
Lt Cmdr Hathev - Counselling - Chief Counsellor [Show/Hide]
Ensign Inej 'Avi' Avirim - Security - Investigations Officer [Show/Hide]

  • Fife
  • [*][*][*][*][*][*]
  • "There's no tea in this tea!"
  • Awards: Awarded to an writer who goes through extreme, even insane measures to get an administrative project done for the sim, well beyond any kind of expectations from the GM. Awarded for participation in Part 1 of Episode 05: Courage is Fear. Awarded for participation in Part 2 of Episode 05: Courage is Fear.
Re: Day 15 [2100 hrs.] Hic Sunt Leones
Reply #3
[ Lt. Cmdr. Cross | Chief Counsellor's Office | Deck 11 | Vector 02 | USS Theurgy ] Attn: @fiendfall
[Show/Hide]Cross sat at Hathev's invitation and nodded as the other Vulcan informed him that she was well, and that he need no be concerned. The assurances were all well and good, but given that Cross had had his hand wrapped around Hathev's throat only 48 hours previous, his sense of guilty was hardly assuaged.

That sense of guilt was replaced with surprise as Hathev inquired as to how he was, and whether he had experienced any last effects. Cross was surprised by the question, himself having been more concerned with the damage he might have done to Hathev rather than the fact that he had lost control. He had certainly never considered that there might be last effects beyond the potential repercussions of being removed from duty. "I'm alright," Cross finally said as he looked at Hathev with a level expression. "I haven't experienced any lasting effects that I've noticed. Though to be honest, I haven't been thinking about that. I've been more preoccupied with the fact that I nearly killed you."

Hathev steered the conversation to matter more related to the business at hand, and Cross' mouth twitched slightly as one corner curved up into the ghost of a lop-sided smile. "I've had a bit of experience with meld, yes." Cross leaned back on the couch, hands resting on his knees as he considered the question. "I was subjected to several mind melds during my rehabilitation after the camps, though I don't remember a great deal about those. More recently, I performed a meld aboard the Versant, though I'd never done it before. It... didn't go so well." Cross shrugged, not feeling the need to go into great detail about the meld with Khorin in the simulated USS Enterprise aboard the Versant. "Seren performed a meld a little over a week ago in order to confirm that my first attempt at performing one hadn't damaged my katra. He found no evidence of damage while he was poking around in my head." Cross sighed, raising his organic hand and running it over the shaved skin at the top of his head. "I'll be honest, I never had any sort of telepathic ability before the Savi went and scrambled my genetic makeup. I have no idea of my level of ability, or of how strong those abilities might be."

Cross let his hand drop then and looked over at Hathev with a calm uncertainty as she explained that he would have a great deal of control over the meld, and that he would be able to choose what to show her and what to conceal. She also explained that it put control of the effectiveness of the meld squarely on him, and that they would be more successful in their endeavour if he were more forthcoming in the upcoming meld. Cross nodded, his expression serious as he did so. He had never been very forthcoming about his past, only telling people bits and pieces, never much in the way of detail. In his experience, some of the finer details of his early life were better left out of civilised conversation.

Cross watched as Hathev rose and moved to a bookshelf in the room, extracting something and placing it on the desk. It must have been a diffuser of some sort, because as Hathev moved to dim the lights Cross got the first hint of a scent drifting about the room, the aroma subtle and soothing. Cross watched as Hathev crossed the room back to the couch, the diminutive Vulcan's movements efficient and precise, yet still feminine. Cross quickly glanced away as Hathev situated herself on the couch, pushing such thoughts from his mind. It wouldn't do for the counsellor to pick up on such things during the meld.

Turning to him, Hathev asked if he had any questions before they began, the counsellor's hazel eyes meeting his with a look of level calm and efficiency. Cross wondered for a moment if Vulcans ever got tired of being so precise, so efficient all the time, and if they ever just relaxed and let themselves be less than perfect.

Bloody Vulcans...

"No, no questions that I can think of." Cross admitted, pushing the mental criticism from his mind. "I'm just a bit... apprehensive... about this. I've... never really let anyone see too much about myself." Cross sighed, then sat up and squared his shoulders. "I'll be fine. I'll need to get over it if we're going to get my instability under control."

Cross gave Hathev a nod as she asked if they ought to begin, his pale eyes never leaving hers. "Ready when you are, counsellor." He took a slow, deep breath as Hathev reached up to place her hands on his face, letting it out slowly and he focused his mind, calming it to allow for the meld to proceed as smoothly as possible.

Here goes nothing... was his last thought before Hathev's fingers made contact, the tips of the digits cold and sending little pricks of sensation through Cross' skin.
Lt. Cmdr. Cross     [Show/Hide]Ensign Isel "Foxfire" Nix     [Show/Hide]PO1 Scruffy LeBlanc      [Show/Hide]