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Inspection: Medical

Posted on 08 May 2017 @ 2:52am by Captain Harvey Geisler & Lieutenant Commander Jayla Kij

Mission: The Finnean Crisis
Location: Sickbay
Timeline: MD 2 || 1115 hours

The Bridge. Engineering. Intelligence. Security. The Flight Deck. They were all individually impressive.

But it was the magnificence of Sickbay that made Harvey yearn for his teal uniform once again. Multiple labs, wards, intensive care unit, and even a dental suite... Harvey was starting to feel like he was commanding a mobile fortress or starbase, not a starship. Even this waiting area in which he entered was a welcome difference to what he was used to on starships.

The technician at the desk waved him in. Harvey nodded as he walked by into the main ward. It was unsurprisingly clean, but if history's established pattern continued to unfold, then it wouldn't last long.

Harvey just hoped he could make it last as long as possible.

Jayla, meanwhile, had aroused a lot of suspicion since returning to Sick Bay. Those who didn't know her just assumed she was introverted, but were quickly informed by those who had served with her before that she was usually very cheerful and friendly and that she was acting very strangely indeed.

She, however, was unaware of any of this. She was too preoccupied with her own thoughts- like why none of her friends had tried to speak with her since the mission briefing and why she was terrified that one of them would at any moment. In fact, she turned from the console where she had been examining the computer's systems, she spotted Captain Geisler. Before she could escape, though, he turned and their eyes met. She attempted to smile, but it felt strained even to her.

Even without her enthusiastic smile, Jayla was impossible to miss in the room. Even though she was one of many non-Terrans in the room, her exotic complexion and hypnotic spots caused her to stand out among them all. Harvey did take notice of her vain attempt at a smile. Even though it had been months since they'd seen each other, it didn't seem like she'd changed all that much. Hopefully, more had happened underneath the barriers she'd erected between herself and the crew. "Well, Jayla?" Harvey asked, clasping his hands behind him and approaching her. "What do you think of the sickbay?"

"It's nice," she said mechanically. "I mean, I haven't had a chance to look at everything, yet, but what I've seen is... it's nice." She really didn't know what else to say. She felt awkward and confused and she didn't know why. This was her friend! Why did she have a hard time talking to him all of a sudden?

"Nice?" Harvey echoed, raising an eyebrow as he looked around the room once more. For a doctor to consider such massive upgrades to be... nice... was beyond him. The conclusion was obvious. Something else was on her mind. "How was Trill?" he asked, assuming that she'd taken the opportunity to return to the Symbiosis Commission for an evaluation and help.

She brightened and relaxed visibly at that. "It was great," she replied. "I got to spend time with my family. Jessa's adopting Lieutenant Harris's little boy. She'd promised to stay with him until he got back to his dad. Well, his dad was among the dead, so she petitioned to adopt him. So I have a nephew. Can you believe it?" And just like that, she was the old, cheerful Jayla again. At least for now.

There she was. At least the good doctor wasn't lost forever. "That's certainly good to hear," Harvey told her. "I'm sure Harris's son is in good hands with your family."

"He's never lived on a planet," she said. "He's never seen a forest or a lake outside of a holodeck. He went crazy when dad took him fishing. And when I took him cliff diving- forget it! I thought he'd give himself a heart attack!"

He nodded. In this day and age, children who'd never stepped onto a planet or moon were starting to become more and more common. "It sounds like he's happy," he remarked. "And it'll help with the healing process." Or so Harvey could hope. Overcoming the death of a loved one was a difficult circumstance to bounce back from. He'd never heard of anyone who'd ever fully healed.

At the mention of healing, the smile slid from her face. "Yeah," she said. Silak's death was still fresh in her mind and the mention of healing brought it back in an instant. "Did you just come down to chat?" she asked flatly.

Harvey, the friend, could have easily affirmed that, but the Captain side regained control and shook his head. "Inaugural inspection," he told her, flashing half a smile. "The perfect excuse for a Captain to spend the day exploring his new command."

She nodded. "Well, Sick Bay is fully stocked," she answered mechanically. "Dr. Road got here early and made sure we had extra medicines and a few spare bio beds. We're still finishing our own inspections, but I think you'll find everything is in order."

"What about its Chief Medical Officer?" Harvey asked, prying now. The last he'd seen Jayla, she wasn't well, and the fake smile she wore earlier told him that her recovery was still in progress.

Jayla blinked. To be perfectly honest, she had no idea how she was doing. She'd thought she was fine, but upon returning to duty, she was confused and afraid and she couldn't figure out why. She probably should have told him so- after all, he was a friend- but she was afraid to say anything. Why? Why was she afraid?

"I'm okay," she finally said, falsely cheerful.

Harvey frowned. He wasn't quite sure how to say what was on his mind. For a while, they were more than friends, and they had agreed that the friend level was the best place for their relationship. During that time, he'd come to know Jayla very well, knowing her quirks and habits. The Jayla standing in front of him was not quite that person anymore. "I have some time," he told her, "if you want to talk about it."

As a friend, Harvey wanted her to be happy again. As her Commanding Officer, Harvey needed his Doctor to be her jovial self once more, to be confident in her abilities when then need arose, especially since they were heading for the unknown.

She should have taken him up on that offer. "Should" being the key word. The truth was, she was afraid to talk to him. So instead of dropping her mask and agreeing to talk sometime, she simply plastered a smile on her face and said, "I'll be fine."

"Still seeing the counselor?" Harvey asked, pressing for one final time. He had to be certain that Doctor Kij would be in perfect working order soon, and that he didn't have to wonder about sickbay. He didn't expect her to crack, and he planned to move on to the real inspection after that.

"I haven't yet, but I plan on it," she answered. In fact, she hadn't yet decided there was a problem, but hey, what could it hurt? If it would make him feel better, she'd go see Stuart. And maybe it would make her feel better, too.

He nodded his approval. "Have you begun the routine crew physicals yet?" Harvey asked. As a physician, it was one of the many things he hated, having to constantly examine the ship's compliment, keeping records up to date.

"We started this morning," she replied. "I think I've got you down for tomorrow sometime, if memory serves."

Harvey nodded, albeit slowly. "I'm sure you're correct. As for now, I know you mentioned everything was ship shape. I'm not quite sure what to expect when we get to Deep Space Fifteen, but I imagine the Finneans could use some medical supplies or attention. Do we have anything to spare, including personnel for a short while?"

"Quite probably," she replied. "We're well staffed and like I said, Doctor Road made sure we're well stocked on supplies, too. I think we can spare people and medicines."

"Sounds excellent, Doctor," Harvey said. "Let's just hope that we're ready for whatever adventures await us."

The urge to hand in her resignation lifted its head sleepily and sort of muttered at her a bit, then laid back down again. "I'm sure we'll meet it like always, ready or no," she replied.

He could tell there was a bit of hesitation there, but he decided that he'd pried enough for one day. In that moment, however, he felt compelled to do something that he hadn't done before. "Jayla," he said. "Do you have a minute?"

"I suppose so," she said, curious as to what he could possibly need to say that he hadn't already said.

"In private?" Harvey asked, not wanting to discuss it in the open.

"Of course," she said, leading him to her office. There was a glass wall, sure, but at least nobody could overhear them. "What's up?" she asked, concerned.

As soon as they were alone, Harvey looked to his left and right before saying, "That message we heard yesterday," he asked. "What did you think about that?"

Jayla took a deep breath, considering being evasive on the subject, but ultimately deciding that he wouldn't appreciate that at all. "To be honest," she started, "I thought about resigning. I thought it's the stupidest thing for us to actually try to go out there. I wondered why they let us hear it- isn't that like self-fulfilling prophesy?- and wondered who in their right mind decided it was smart to send you out on a ship called Black Hawk, knowing what was going to happen." She took a deep breath. "It feels like a major cluster f- well, anyway," she quickly corrected, but then didn't know where to go with it.

Harvey nodded, surprised to learn that she considered walking away from it all. "I don't know what to make of it myself. If they didn't tell us, would we really go into the zone? Or, will we try to avoid going into the zone now? I don't know." Harvey sighed. "You're one of the few people who really know me, Jayla. That voice... that person on the screen. Do you think that was really me?"

That gave Jayla pause. She hadn't had any reason to believe it wasn't, but now that he said it.... "Do you think it wasn't?" she asked, brow wrinkling.

"I honestly don't know," Harvey replied, shaking his head. "I don't know what to believe anymore. Something's not adding up, and I don't know where to look."

"I'm afraid I'm going to be no help," she replied wearily. "It's likely I know even less than you do."

Harvey sighed. He hadn't expected Jayla to confirm or deny anything. If, in the off chance, the message had somehow been falsified, he'd like to have known that someone else had a feeling that it wasn't right. Sadly, there wasn't even enough of the message to begin with. He had to get his hands on that probe, and soon. "Thanks anyway, Doctor," Harvey said, his tone disappointed. "I'll leave you to your sickbay. I'm sure you have patients to attend to."

She glanced out into Sick Bay to see her next physical waiting. Ugh. Was it too late to resign. "You probably have work to do, too," she said flatly. "Don't work too hard, sir."


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