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Talking About the Bad Stuff

Posted on Sun Jul 10th, 2016 @ 4:05am by

Mission: Homecoming (Reborn)
Location: Lizzy's Office
Timeline: After 'Who are you, and What have you done to me'


As the door buzzer went off in her office, Lizzy looked up from where she was laying with T'Madh, "Oh."

It had been when T'Madh got off a shift and had come around that she had found Lizzy doing yoga, and decided that it was a good time. Things had gotten a bit intense, and now, both of their clothes were sort of strewn about the place.

T'Madh pushed herself off the couch and Lizzy didn't resist, even if she had wanted to, the stronger Vulcan would have been able to get up. But it was a little bit of a shock when her wife walked calmly across the room to the door and pressed the open door button, not even worrying about her nude state.

"Hello, Lieutenant Commander. I assume you are here to see Elizabeth. We will not be long with changing. Elizabeth and my counsellors said I need to learn to start expressing some of my Romulan heritage."

With that, T'Madh walked to where her robe was and reached down, picking it up and putting it around her.

Lizzy blinked and watched T'Madh leave. Gulping, she spoke, "Umm.. Yeah.. Well.. Sorry. How can I help you?"

M'Gann blinked and respectfully averted her gaze, giving a simple nod as T'Madh grabbed her robe and left. "Guess I should've scheduled ahead of time..." she commented as a lame attempt at humor. "Um... can I?" she gestured into the room from her position by the doorway. "The uh, the doctors recommended that I see someone. I-I don't know if they had sent an update on my condition, but I just... I need your help." The blonde avoided Lizzy's gaze, but not because of the same reason she turned her eyes for T'Madh. She knew she could trust Lizzy, but it was still strange to see everyone she thought had died walking around alive and well. "A lot has happened to me, and I need an outlet..." She left out that she didn't know who to trust anymore, but the way she phrased her sentence and left it hanging implied enough.

Lizzy knew quite quickly even without her empathic skills that something was really wrong and shook her head, "M'Gann, it is okay. Both T'Madh and I know that walk ins happen, and I am glad that you came to see Counselling."

The counsellor got up, walking over and putting hand on M'Gann's, "We are always here to talk. Have a seat. Can I get you anything first before you run through what's happened?"

"Maybe a stress ball or something I can have in my hands," the blonde requested. The hand on hers gave her some comfort, and she cautiously followed Lizzy into the room.

Lizzy nodded and went to the replicator, getting a stress ball and some glasses of water in case as well.

Returning, she handed the stress ball over, "That's a good idea."

M’Gann took a seat and fiddled with the ball in her hands for a moment. If Miko were there she would probably have worn a bald spot into his fur. "I'm probably going to sound insane," she warned Lizzy, keeping her eyes fixed on the object in her hands, "... but I didn't die. Well, I did, several times, but not in the fight. I-I think it was a parallel universe that the anomaly pulled me and Miko into, because what happened there... it didn’t happen here.

"COIL, they... they captured the Gladiator, detained David, and killed everyone in front of him. Then they invaded and took over Starfleet. They killed thousands, anyone who didn't comply with their rule. It turned into what’s now called the New Federation Order, and shortly after they caught me." The blonde paused for a moment, knowing that they were about to dive into what was bothering her. As much as she tried to control her breathing, it came out in shaky spurts of air as she willed herself to take deep breaths. She squeezed the ball a couple times. "They made me a lab rat, experimented, poked, prodded..." she shut her eyes, partly to shut out the memory and also to try and keep back the tears that wanted to spill. "I-I can’t describe in words what they did to me."

M'Gann let another pause hang as she tried to figure out what to say and not start sobbing. "Hawkins... they faked his execution, a-and they used him to get information from me that I didn't have. He... he t-tortured me, and I-I died by his hand t-twice..."

Grabbing a tissue box and moving over, Lizzy put an arm around M'Gann to hug her and passed over some tissues, "Aww honey, I am so sorry that it is painful, but it isn't good bottling up stuff like this."

M'Gann gave the green foam ball a strong squeeze, feeling its tension as it tried to revert back to its original shape in her clenched fist. Swallowing the lump in her throat, she leaned into Lizzy's hug as she took a tissue and pinched her nose near her eyes to try and catch the tears before they fell. "They used him... I recognized David, and they used him. Now, I..." She paused to take a deep breath. "I know that the David here isn't the one who interrogated me..." There was a 'but' coming, it was on the tip of the blonde's tongue, and she released the ball to get it go back to its round shape before squeezing it again.

Lizzy nodded that the stress ball was helping, and she passed some more tissues, wiping some tears away, "Its okay, M'Gann. You have nothing to be afraid of here."

"... but the way General Hawkins could just... press the button, and care so little as he brought me to the brink of death and back again... the way he could kill me those two times and not bat an eye... it was terrifying." M'Gann looked over at Lizzy, "if you could see the look on that man's face as he did it, the tiny sparkle of evil in his eye and the little smirk... he enjoyed it. It scared me that he could balance life and death that easily."

Lizzy held M'Gann's hand, "I can't know what you went through, but we will work through this. The fear is real and rom the sounds of things and what I've heard, there is very much going to be different values over there and not something that is easily understandable. Experience like that are hard to get through but time and therapy will help you recover from this."

M'Gann took a moment to catch her breath, allowing Lizzy to comfort her. She turned her head away when the memory of the counselor with blood spilling down her front as the crowd cheered on rushed forward, and she tried hard to push the memory away. "It's more than values," she softly replied, her voice a little shaky from her struggling to maintain some composure. "... it's become a way of life. Everything turned into a dictatorship when the Order took over, and gradually the executions happened so much that they became the norm. They did it to David, and several others... I remember all too well what they did to you."

Lizzy blinked a little in response, but didn't say anything, knowing that it was best to let her continue. It might do a bit of good to know and it could help her assess any response that she got from M'Gann during treatment. She realised she should have asked earlier to make sure, but hadn't realised then.

The blonde took a shaky breath and squeezed Lizzy's hand to make sure she was still really there. "You... during the battle, fourteen months ago, you and T'Madh ran. It was like you knew what they were going to do to the crew. You kept running for three months until-until the Order caught you. Th-they tied you in chains and beat you, making her watch, then did the same t-to her. Then they publicly executed you, one by one." She clenched her eyes shut, but it didn't stop the tears from rolling gently down her cheeks. "Y-your screams as they slit her throat... I can still hear it ringing i-in my ears. Th-they made me watch as they killed her, and after they gave you that emotional pain they killed you too, the knife spilling blood from your throat a-and mixing with hers o-on the ground. Y-you watched each other d-die... and the crowd, they j-just... cheered on." She was shaking now as she felt her control slipping away, and in her hand her nails were digging into the ball as she clenched it tightly, which made her knuckles grow white.

"I... I don't want these memories..." she choked out, slightly shaking her head. "They k-keep me awake at night, th-the nightmares, a-and I just want it t-to stop!"

Lizzy felt her throat tighten up as she listened, feeling her heartrate increase and tears coming to her eyes at the thought of what that T'Madh would have gone through to see herself being beaten. Because of the mental bond that had been established with T'Madh due to the frequent mind-melding, Lizzy knew how much her wife loved her and how much that the Vulcan had very much developed a psychological dependence on her, essentially dependent personality disorder. She also knew in all her being that she would not have wanted to live without T'Madh, and knowing what M'Gann had seen was important for her to know.

Finally, she got her voice back, "I can understand, and thank you for telling me that. I know it must have been hard. I think that it would be warranted to use some medication to help you recover in a low dose. Prazosin is a drug that works on both bolians and human, and there have been many studies on how improves sleep and reduces nightmares for people with PTSD since it was originally found in the 21st century to be quite effective. Medical and I'll will have to monitor your regularly though as it can affect blood pressure."

M'Gann was silent for a moment as she considered the medication. Part of her was hesitant after the countless drugs Arvix would inject her with. But if it helped with the nightmares... finally, she gave a tentative nod. Her wrist started to ache from squeezing the ball so tightly, and she loosened her grip, the nail marks visible in the ball's round shape for a moment before the foam made them fade away. "They already watch me to make sure I don’t get myself hurt, intentionally or not," she shrugged halfheartedly, "... but if it helps then I suppose I can live with it. I just-" She sighed and put her head in her hands, the ball slipping out and plopping into her lap. "What will help me with David?" Her voice asked from her hands.

Lizzy sensed something wasn't all right about the drug idea, and patted M'Gann, "We can try very small doses, okay. i do need to say that the first one normally hits harder for some reason - no one has every worked out why."

Thinking for a moment, she continued, "I have some ideas about that. It will be quite difficult and take time to get over that, but what we can do is to try misdirecting your mental image of him. Such as maybe a clown? I don't think the normal 'think of them nude' idea will really work but could try. I also do think that we need to let him know about the issue so that it doesn't cause any further problems. I do believe that our universe's one would be willing to help if needed or give permission to do holodeck therapy with his likeness."

M'Gann sniffled a little before nodding, using her hands to wipe her eyes. "I'm willing to try whatever you recommend, Lizzy. And to be honest I'm not really keen on the idea of more drugs in my body, but if it helps me sleep with these memories then I can give it a go. But David... I don't want to hurt him anymore than I already have," she said, her eyes now trained on the floor. She remembered her meeting with him and how badly that ended, and grabbed her ball again. "I can tell it hurts him to see me like this, and I know he means well, but no matter how hard I try to remind myself of that I still see the face of the man who did those things to me. I see him, and deep down I want to run, or hide, anything to protect myself from him. He can't even point to a damn bench without me thinking that he's going to hurt me!" The last sentence came off a little harsher than intended, and the blonde took a deep breath. "Sorry."

Lizzy smiled, "Its okay and we can work on things. There are other alternatives that can be one other then medicinal drugs. From the sound of it, they might actually do more harm then good."

Lizzy nodded, "I know, and its okay. This is a normal reaction and it will take time. I think we need to at least let him know, and we can try things in the holodeck. You don't have to be sorry. I want to help you and we will get through this."

M'Gann gave a small nod in response. "When can we give it a shot?" Part of her was hoping for later than sooner, but she wanted to bite this thing in the bud before it got worse. She could see the pain in David’s eyes, the hurt, and it made her feel guilty because she was the one who was making him hurt. A lot had changed over the past year, for both of them, and it would take time.

"Hmm.. I think I will need to talk to Medical as well. Just to make sure, and I think it might be worth getting Lydia involved too."



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