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Talking to the Herd

Posted on Sun Sep 27th, 2015 @ 7:32pm by Commander Mercia Kavi & Major Delvok & Lieutenant JG Lydia Whitlock M.D., J.D. & Lieutenant Lixor Nabohn & Lieutenant JG Geneviève Charmignon

Mission: The Perfect Hunter

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When Lizzy had heard there were people coming over from the station that had been locked away, she immediately put in a 'cancel all appointments' order for the Counselling department followed by a department meeting for 10 minutes time. Once there, she explained what she knew and outlined the trauma and triage protocols just to make sure.

So, heading down into the shuttle bays, she waited. Lizzy was going to let Medical run all the directions for who and when to work on.

M'Gann approached the shuttle bays, two other science crewmen in tow. She had mentioned it to Lixor, and hoped he could show and help out. As they arrived, she spotted Lizzy up ahead and waved a greeting.

Lixor glance behind him at the two trailing crewmen as a faint smile crossed his face, "either of you good at entertaining," he questioned, "we need to treat them with respect, get them to talk about what happened and what they did and make them feel like you are having a conversation not an interrogation." Ho raised his chin slightly as he added, "oh and try to stay out of the medical teams way..."

He saw M'Gann in front of him and his smile broadened, "you ready Lieutenant Sverch'tel?" The blue man knew this was going to be a challenge though he hoped the fact that they were just rescued would loosen their new arrivals tongues a little.

The blonde turned when she heard Lixor behind her and smiled. "Ready as we'll ever be. Have they been briefed?" She nodded to the two crewmen behind him.

"Yes Lieutenant," the blue man offered with a smile, "let's make some small talk."

She nodded. "Alright. If we can get something out of them, great. But don't push them into answering. These people have been through a lot, and some of them may not want to talk. Medical will likely be here shortly." M'Gann turned to Lizzy, she asked, "is there anything else we should know or be made aware of?"

Lydia arrived with a medkit hangng off one shoulder and a stack of PADDs in her hands for proper note-taking and for potentially recording what patients offered, provided they gave permission. This was one hell of a first assignment for her on the Gladiator and one that would challenge her skillsets.

Having heard M'Gann's question of the counselor just as Whitlock arrived, Lydia offered, "If I may, Counselor, I was going to suggest people approach each survivor one at time. I realize it'd be more efficient to tag-team as much as possible, but I fear we risk shutting them down if we overwhelm them at once. I think it'll go a long way if we tend to their physical and emotional needs first and then ask them if they'd be willing to answer questions. I brought PADDs so those who give their permission can have those statements recorded. I expect they'll be severely traumatized and likely they've regressed into more primitive behavior because they've had to fight for survival and have lacked social interaction. Think fight, flight, and freeze."

M'Gann listened to the response from the newcomer and nodded her agreement. "Thank you for the input, Doctor," she said with a small smile.

Lizzy grinned, "Sure, that's a good idea."

Gwen rushed onto the scene, already hustling to make sure there were accommodations for all the new arrivals. She was simultaneously trying to figure out their physiology, as she wasn't quite sure what she was dealing with here. She stopped for a moment by a small gathering of crew members, hoping to get an update of some sort as to when they would be coming in to question her patients. She addressed the group, "I've got a few scans running on our guests of honor, and from what I can tell, they'll be fine. I'm not exactly an expert on their physiology yet. What's the news on counselors and questioning?"

Lizzy piped up, "We are over here, and I've been talking to M'Gann and Lydia about ideas. We agree with the idea of limiting to very small groups one by one so as not to overwhelm."

Seera had been a neurosurgeon on the station. She'd spoken with these federation types, and now they were free. Or were they? They trapped in yet another cargo bay just like before. At least this time they had access to sonic showers, clean clothes, and fresh food. A service area had been set up for them, and federation personnel seemed to be gathering.

Seera nibbled on some bread and watched them feeling very strange. There were so many more minds now, and part of her was untrusting. The truth was they could all be arrested for what happened. Maybe the Bria were just playing the Federation types, and they were going to kill the crew of the Gladiator and make them a herd again.

She stood up and wandered near the security line, watching the small gathering clad in blue uniforms.

Lixor's eyes caught the movement near line and tilted his head, "I think were being watched," he said, "Perhaps we better start before the natives get too restless."

The blonde nodded, sparing a quick glance around the cargo bay. It seemed almost unusual to put them in what they've been trapped in for the last six months, but where else on the ship could they go? "Alright, spread out, and try to keep it one-on-one."

Gwen split off from the group, allowing them to all do their jobs as she went back to her own. She joined another medic who was scanning one of the patients and pulled out her med kit to get to work.

The blue man nodded, "I'll try to head the inquisitive one off at the gate," he remarked with a smirk, "not sure I would be in a great mood herded into a cargo bay."

He walked over to the woman with a broad smile making his way passed the security line. He hoped his demeanor might calm any misgiving but knew that was a long long shot. He tried to make eye contact with the woman early on to let her know he was approaching her then stopped a comfortable distance away before addressing her, "Hello, I'm Lieutenant Lixor Nabohn, I'm the assistant chief scientist on the Gladiator," He nodded towards her, "We'll try to get things sorted out here as fast as we can."

"I hope so. Do you know if we are under arrest?" she asked. "I know what we did was illegal, but most of us didn't know until we got here and we were not allowed to leave." she said. Seera looked at the team, "Please, don't be afraid of us, we are all weak and malnourished and some injured... others have unstable mental conditions now..." she said looking back at the other 70 people who were in various levels health.

A woman noticed them and rushed towards the gate, "Please! Help us!" Others began to come closer, and security was starting to get nervous.

M'Gann noticed the woman moving rather quickly towards them, followed by several others. "We will try to help you in any way we can," she replied in a calm voice.

"I have to find out if my daughter is alright!"
"I want to press charges!"
"My brothers foot is injured."
"The Bria are still here."
"They will kill us all!"
"I demand to speak to your superior."
"You can't keep us here!"
"I want to go back!"
"You need to arrest those two!"

A chorus of voices picked up as the crowd started to press forward.

Lixor drew in a breath as he watched things deteriorate from calm to chaos. He turned his head towards one of the security officers, "were going to need some tables and chairs I am afraid, seems we are going to have to form lines and we may need some more security or we're going to get run over."

He raised is voice and put up a hand as he continued switching his audience back to the those who were brought from the station. "We need your help and we want to talk with each of you but we can't if your all talking at once. No one is under arrest right now so please be patient as we try to take care of your needs in an orderly manor."

The scientist was calm but direct, it paid to have some background in leadership even if it came from being in a gang., "now," he began again addressing the woman he originally had intended to speak to, "sorry for the confusion."

"We are all scared and confused." Seera said. She looked at her fellows and raised her hands, "Please, they are here to help us... Lets be civil." she pleaded.

Some of them complied, others stood there, staring.

Mikaua listened to the brief uproar of noise, rolling her eyes. Sure, they were scared -truth was, she was scared herself- but yelling things at their rescuers wouldn't help. It was nice to hear a new blend of voices, apart from Khelev's back on the station. Eight, maybe? Ten? It was hard to count because of the conversations around her. There might have been one that passed her, but she couldn't quite tell.

"I can understand that," Lixor offered with a faint smile, "if you can bear with us a while I think we can get things sorted out." Be breathed in and continued, "we are doing our best to get you the aid you need but it will be much easier if we all can be civilized about it."

"I suggest you just get going with the work, no one is going to be fully calm until this is over with." Seera snipped.

The scientist tilted his head, "very well then," he said changing his tone, . He stood a little straighter, "I want to know what your position was on the station."

There were some gasps come from the in the middle of the group before a short little man pushed his way. Stepping up to the scientist, he put down the canvas bag he had over his shoulder on the ground, put his hands on his hips and looked up, "And what's your position here? You seem to be a bit of an ass if you are trying to intimidate us."

Poking the scientist with a short stubby finger, he added, "Don't they teach you anything? My rock collection has better manners then you do."

Lixor looked down at the man and smiled. He couldn't help it. The tone of his voice and his boldness reminded him of a younger version of himself. "What do you suggest sir," he offered, "I asked a question, one I felt was reasonable. I didn't use derogatory language when I did it nor did I threaten the use of force if she didn't comply." He took in a deep breath and rubbed the area he was just poked, "now I will be very happy to use my please and thank yous sir and will be happy to.

He turned to the woman he was just talking to, "as this gentlemen has pointed out I was a bit abrupt." the blue man softened his stance and tried again, "would you mind answering a few questions for me so we can expedite these proceedings and get you more suitable quarters?"

Cadet Tavik, final year Starfleet academy cadet, federation citizen and cardassian of species. Watched on nervously as the the crowed became unsettled

"I was just a neuroscientist." Seera said trying to clam herself down. Tensions were high and her telepathic nature made her pick up on easier than most. "No administrators are left alive, they were first to be eaten."

"Yes," Lixor said furrowing his brow, "we did hear something about that." He nodded, "thank you for answering and could you tell me what sort of research you were told when you hired in you would be doing?"

"I was told I would be studying the development of fetal animals which were being developed to withstand harsher environments to help on new colonies." she said. "Helping animals be stronger to help colonies be stronger seemed like a decent job. I had no idea what I was getting in to." Seera said. "You'll find such stories among most of us."

"Actually," Lixor said calmly and offering a sympathetic smile, "I believe you." he furrowed his brow, "it is understandable why you would not think this research would be beneficial and useful." He nodded again but this time changing his expression, "when did you notice something wasn't quite right?"

She sighed, "When I arrived. I was rather concerned durring transport but I shrugged it off. The moment we arrived I knew something was wrong. The people were unhappy, I senses a lot of fear... and pain." she bit her lower lip. "I tried to resist, tried to leave, bu they just... they make you work..."

Lixor shook his head. The woman didn't have a chance and to survive it was hard to say what she was forced to do and endure, "I am sorry you went through this," he said, "I can only imagine what it was like."

"Can you tell me what they did to keep you working, what kind of force did they use on you?" The man felt bad asking but he needed to know not only for whatever report he would have to write but to fulfill his growing curiosity."

Seera bit her lower lip, "I really dont like talking about it... but it was a mix of promises broken, psycological convincing... chipping." she said rubbing her neck, "I am hoping you'll be removing the chips?" she asked. "I really dislike having electronics wrapped around my brain stem to give me pain or kill me if I do not comply."

Lixor eyes showed far more emotion then his face. It was a mixture of anger and sympathy, anger for what they did and sympathy for her experiencing it.

"Would you mind if one of the medical staff examined you," he asked, "I am sure it will help us determine what can be done and how soon we can accomplish it."

Seera nodded, "I want to be dechipped." she said. "I want to be away from that place, and I want to go home." she sighed.

"Let's get you looked at then," he said, "I'll introduce you to someone on the medical staff and we can get at least your medical situation sorted out a little."

He lowered his head slightly but continued to look on the woman with his hazel eyes, "would you like me to introduce you to the Chief medical officer?"

Seera nodded, "It looks like she is busy, maybe one of the other medics?" she asked. "I know exactly what needs to happen, I am a neurosurgeon, i just can not do the work myself."

"understood," Lixor said with a smile, "let me see who is available."

Seera nodded. It took him a few moments but when he returned with a medical officer she smiled, "Good morning... or afternoon." she said. "Listen, I have a kill switch attached to my spinal chord. All of us do, We need them removed, so there is no risk of activation." she said quickly hoping the medical professional would understand.

Gwen nodded, her face serious. She had never encountered something like this before, but she hoped the devices could be removed without damaging the spinal cord. She pulled out her tricorder, saying, "Alright. I'll just do a preliminary scan." If something went wrong, the device was high enough on the woman's spinal cord that it could damage any or all of her nervous system and motor functions. Gwen tried to keep her face expressionless as she saw how the device was attached, and was relieved that it seemed to just wrap around the cord without penetrating it. That would make the surgeries a lot less complex.

"Find it yet?" Seera asked.

Gwen folded up her tricorder and smiled softly at the scientist. "I think this won't bee too bad. We probably won't even need to put you under for the surgery, if that's alright with you. It would help us facilitate the removal of everyone's devices." Then, she thought of something. "Is there an emergency trip switch? If we try to remove it, is there a chance that it will self destruct or anything like that?"

Seera winced, "To be honest I don't know. It's meant to be a kill switch if someone is not complaint, but it also can cause a lot of pain to enforce compliance." she said. "We have not risked trying to remove them." she sighed, "If you need a volunteer to test this on... I guess I volunteer." she sighed heavily.

Lixor concentrated on what Gwen was sharing. He stood there with one had by his side and the other rubbing his chin, "Can the device be frozen first? I mean, if we expose it to ultra cold temperatures it might not be able usable anymore, and thus the risk of it accidentally activating during surgery would be eliminated?"

Gwen shrugged, "I'm not sure, but I guess it's worth a try. I'll do a deeper scan of the device to see if it contains any dangerous chemicals, and then I'll cut it away in a spot that doesn't contain any wires so we can avoid electrocution." She smiled reassuringly, as she pulled out her tricorder again to get a more in depth scan of the device, "I'm sure it will be fine."

"I'll leave you here with Gwen," Lixor offered, "This seems to be more pressing than my questions. But I would like to come talk with you again later, if I may?"

"Yes that would be fine." Seera said before she turned her attention to the medical officer.

Gwen nodded, "If you'd follow me to our sickbay, we can have this thing out of you in no time." She smiled comfortingly. She wanted to do the first one in the sickbay, then teach the rest of the nurses and medics how to do it.

~~~~~

Once the little intimidating hookup had been sorted, Kelbor picked up his bag of rocks & swaggered over to one of the female doctors, looking up at her, "Hi, my name's Kelbor. You're rather cute. I think I need some treatment, because just looking at you has stole my heart away."

Lydia set off to work on her own and was so focused and expectant of a tense situation of her own to handle that she was taken off-guard by the obvious flirtation. Still, she had to remain professional and consider the possibility the flirtatious manner was a way to conceal vulnerability. "My name is Dr. Lydia Whitlock, Kelbor. It's nice to meet you, but I'm sorry for the circumstances." She met his eyes and offered firmly, "I do not have time for flirtation right now or any insincere attempts for physical contact because as you can see, there's quite a few people to tend to. I'll ask you once, and one time only right now. How are you feeling physically right now and do you need medical attention?"

He thought for a moment before sighing, "Yes, and no.. I rather like the little experiment they did for me.. Check this out."

Holding out his hand, he concentrated and then the metal tricorder shot out to his hand as a magnetic force gripped it.

"See? I can magnetize my hand. Hmm.. I wonder if that will work with zippers. That could be amusing."

Still not convinced his blithe manner indicated he wasn't bothered by what had happened to him or that he wasn't in physical danger, Lydia focused on the work at hand. "I'm glad you can maintain your sense of humor under the circumstances," she replied genuinely. "Humor can be an important coping skill. That said, your new abilities may not just be a fascinating and humorous trick, but may also be compromising your health. Please give me back the tricorder, so we may find out."

He nodded, "Oh, sorry. Yeah, that would be a good thing. I do like it, but well, if it is gonna be bad, might have to think about it."

He handed it back and then held his hand out for her.

"Thank you," Lydia replied with a small smile before she began her scan. "Have you noticed any other symptoms or problems?" Whitlock asked. To hopefully prevent another flip or lascivious reply, she added quickly, "Answer me honestly, please."

Lizzy spoke to the counselors, and then they all headed off into the crowd. Moving over to where a little girl was sitting, she sat down and pulled out a lollipop, "Hello, honey. Do you want this? How are you?"

The little girl scrunched up her face and said "My mommy said I should not have sweets before dinner......." she looked around "I want my mummy." Her eyes began to well up. She looked around the room for her mother.

Lizzy nodded, "Okay. What's your name, honey? I'll help you find your mummy. Can you describe her or know her name?"

Cadet T'tarik calmed himself as the situation seem to pacify itself a little. He took his hand off of his side arm and looked around the room for trouble.

Lixor had walled away from the person he was talking to, as she needed the medical treatment far more than his questions and he realized it. At the moment, his presence there seemed more a a joke than a necessity. Trying to ask questions to people who were malnourished, mistreated and mistrusting wasn't going to be an easy task. And even if they did reply, would their answers be open and honest?

He drew in a deep breath, then chastised himself for taking in the less than pleasant aromas of unwashed bodies and filth that surrounded him. It reminded him too much of the failed colony and trying to survive any way he could in the unwelcoming environment.

tbc...

 

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