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Jai's Anatomy, part 2 (Corrected Copy)

Posted on Sat Apr 15th, 2017 @ 4:29pm by Lieutenant JG Jai

Mission: Back Post
Location: Starfleet Medical, Earth
Timeline: 2388
Tags: Jai

“But perhaps the dream is dreaming us
Astride the backs of eagles.”

- Sting



Leaping atop an end table in one of the waiting rooms, the Miran stretched out his arms and announced, “Here endeth the shift! LET THERE BE PIZZA!”

[ “Doctor Jai, please contact the nurse’s station.” ]

The boy’s shoulder sagged, his head rolling forward as he nearly pitched off the table is dismay.

Meanwhile, his shift-mates were all making for the door at a noticeably quickened pace. “Oh, no, you guys just go on without me. Please,” the boy cracked wryly, knowing that a fair number were going to be running for the bar at Pier Four. Hopping down from the make-shift soap box, the boy medic made his way back through the halls, until he’d arrived back at the nurse’s station in the main suite.

“What did I do to you!?” the boy greeted the new technician that was there. The Bolian had obviously run for the door. The stubbly halo that was growing back in atop the child’s head gave evidence the fact that he’d been at Starfleet Medical for the better part of a day now.

The Zakdorn at the nurses station didn’t care about any of that. “You’re still the on-call resident and I’ve got a parent on the comm,” the male petty officer barked shortly.

“There’s always a parent on the comm. Give it to Varuk. Or Roberts. Hell, give it to Amaen...”

“How about I just give it to you since you’re the on-call?”

There was a human gesture that Jai had learned during his years in San Francisco. It hadn’t been something he’d known in his native Tibet, owing to originating in Western society. It involved holding out one’s hand and extending the middle finger. After he’d displayed the Terran symbol toward the Zakdorn, the young doctor turned it upside down and activated the comm unit. “Hi, Miss...”

Jai’s eyes glanced at the name that came up on the screen and instantly regretted having opened his mouth.

“...Miss name-I’m-not-going-to-try-and-pronounce,” the Miran deadpanned finally. “How do you say that?”

[ “Zyaolanaodt.” ]

Jai merely blinked. “Riiiiiiiiight,” he murmured, looking up the pediatric file. “And you’ve got...”

The kid’s name was arguably even more unpronounceable. “...a son. Age nine months,” Jai noted, before turning his full attention back to the caller. “Well, ma’am, what’s got you concerned?”

[ “He’s normally not very fussy, but he’s only been sleeping for brief periods. And I’m having a hard time getting him to take a bottle.” ]

“Uh huh.”

[ “And he’s been running a low fever.” ]

“How low?”

[ “Ninety nine.” ]

“How have his diaper changes been?”

[ “Normal.” ]

Turning his head slightly off monitor, the Miran whispered down to the medic, “First kid?” As anticipated, there was a slow nod to indicate this was probably a frequent caller.

Popping back into view, Jai just put on a smile for the distressed new parent. “Okay. Well, if you’re worried, you are more than welcome to bring him in anytime; but...” the boy noted, holding up one finger. “...why don’t see if his fever doesn’t subside after tonight?” the young resident proposed warmly

There was a moment before Jai added, “Oh, and you might try giving him a teething ring.”

[ “You think he’s just teething?” ]

“I think it’s a strong possibility. And it can’t hurt,” the boy answered bluntly, even as he leaned forward with a more conciliatory approach. “How about you give that a shot. But call again if the fever goes…”

Jai!”

The boy looked up, barely in time for his mind to register something being thrown at him. He brought his arms up hastily, as a folded up stack of clothes hit him in the chest. Staring down at it, it was a Starfleet uniform, trimmed in medical teal, that was his size.

Tiran Amaen was storming into view, a man with a purpose. “Good, you’re still here,” the Betazoid barked, his voice snapping like thunder. It was somewhat startling to behold. The usually laid back, gentile psychiatrist transformed into a Zeus-like orator whose words rolled like thunder across the ER. “Get up to the launch bay, there’s a transport crossing toward Alpha Centauri that’s called in a medical emergency. You’re riding shotgun.”

Until that moment, the boy hadn’t realized just how exhausted that he was. Shoulders bowed with the weight of his own body, the boy let slip a bit of selfishness as he looked up and asked,“But, Doctor Varuk?”

This wasn’t his shift.

This wasn’t fair.

“Scrubbed in for surgery,” Amaen’s voice boomed. The turbolift doors popped open for him, the barrel chested Betazoid man stepping inside the lift. Turning, leveling a scathing glare of smoldering fury down toward the boy, the seasoned doctor barked, “Now, Ensign.


The SS Sun Wukong was an interstellar transport out of the Bolian System. It was one of the old Oberth-class explorer that had been decommissioned by Starfleet and re-purposed as a civilian cruise liner. It specialized in stellar nurseries, offering travelers exotic vacations to visually stunning nebulae across the Alpha Quadrant. A mostly automated warp drive had a plethora of redundant safety features built into it, but restricted travel to Warp Five. For a non-Starfleet vessel though, that wasn’t terrible.

Even for a Starfleet vessel, that wasn’t necessarily terrible. The Danube-class runabout ran at Warp Five. Jai found himself fidgeting in the back of the cockpit. Ahead, at the controls, an EMT pilot and Captain Amaen guided the large shuttle toward their destination.

The emergency call hadn’t included many details. But, Federation records indicated that the Sun Wukong had a stop at Vulcan before departing en route to Alpha Centauri. When the medical emergency had gone out, the vessel had been in vacant space -- the interstellar medium that formed vast swaths of nothing between solar systems. Sol presented the closest opportunity for responding.

Even moving at speeds beyond comprehension, the cruise liner’s locale was remote enough that it was an hour before the runabout was alongside the Sun Wukong. The trio gathered on the small transport pad, and Jai mentally prepared himself for the rather strange means by which people seemed to prefer to travel in the modern age.

Travel via the marvel of technology that was the transporter was a fundamental aspect of life in the Federation, in particular the Starfleet, that would drive an otherwise rational human being insane if they stopped to think about the process. A moment, or moments, where your continued existence was interrupted. Sensory deprivation did nothing to describe the complete lack of consciousness for all but a second at either end of the transport, nor did you occupy conceivable notion of space aside from a staggering series of one's and zero's that the computer tabulated as a means by which you were disassembled and reassembled. That idea, in and of itself, was more than a little maddening.

Of course, being that it did what it did, the transporter was the single most checked, verified, and rigorously tested piece of equipment on any starship. It had multiple failsafes and was built with what would be an otherwise inordinate number of redundancies on each component piece. The fact remained, however, that no one trusted the very fibers of their being to the nacelles or the navigational deflector, so even for it being the safest piece of equipment on the ship, it said a little something about the faith the Federation put in technology that everyone readily jumped at having their atoms scrambled as a means of getting from Point A to Point B.

As a dizzying sensation sparked a return to consciousness, Jai 'awoke' to the fading blue shimmer of the transport beam and a quickly subsiding feeling akin of 'pins and needles' over his whole body. The giddy impression of weightlessness was replaced by the familiar environment of normal gravity, and the boy found himself standing in unfamiliar surroundings that were rather impressively appointed. The Sun Wukong's decorator could have given the interior designers of the Galaxy-class a few pointers.

And standing in wait was a tall, older, Bolian man that the young Miran recognized from the recordings of the initial distress call. The man summarily sized up both the other members of his team and in quick succession the boy was aware that the Bolian captain was staring at him. Had he the opportunity, Jai would have bet five credits what the first words out of the captain's mouth were going to be.

"Aren't you a little short to be a Starfleet?"

...and Jai would have won the bet. His nose wrinkling slightly, the Tibetan youth craned his head back as he began to retort, "Aren't you a little tall to be a..."

The sharp intake of air and loud clearing of the throat cut the boy off. An imposing shadow passed over him, as the moving mountain of a Betazoid stepped forward. "I’m Doctor Tiran Amaen of Starfleet Medical,” the man began, gesturing toward the EMT and then down to the boy beside him. "Petty Officer Velez-Villa, and this little one is Ensign Jai of Miri’s Planet."

The Bolian had stopped listening sometime after the word ‘doctor.’

"Doctor? Great maker," the Bolian said, stepping past both the petty officer and the Miran to take the doctor by the arm and start dragging the man through the hallways of the ship, babbling the whole way as he set out. "We're on our way to Bajor. Its a return trip actually, we started out there on a package tour of the nebulae in the core worlds..."

Jai and the tech fell into step behind the pair. "Let's skip to the issue if we can," the boy heard the Betazoid remark flatly.

"Right. One of the passengers, a little girl with a Bajoran family, fell ill at dinner the other night," the Bolian supplied, taking the group around a corner and into a botanical courtyard that featured, of all things, an actual fountain with recirculating water. On a starship. Or a cruise ship. Whatever this thing was. Jai just shook his head as the group continued. "We thought at first it was just space sickness, but its been getting worse."

"You said 'at dinner,'" Tiran noted as they walked. "Any other complaints on board?"

"No. I mean, we considered food poisoning but she didn't have the hasperat, which could be undercooked in parts, she had the Terran wedge salad," the captain replied. Jai’s face instinctively took on a sour expression at the mental impression formed by the word ‘salad’. And a kid ate this? Voluntarily? No wonder she was sick, he thought.

"It was fairly popular and no one else has complained."

"Replicated or natural?"

"Replicated of course," the captain supplied, pausing just outside the door to a crew cabin. "We use Folgor and Trigule's mark-seventeen catering replicators. They were just recertified last year."

Leveling a finger, the Betazoid turned on them. “Take a look at the replicators. It could be a chemical string out of alignment,” the man stated, giving a nod of dismissal to each in turn before he proceeded on his way with the captain.

And, just like that, Jai found himself tasked with... replicators.

After Tiran was out of earshot, the boy craned a head to look up at the EMT. “I’m a doctor, not an engineer,” the Miran remarked in protest.

The technician gave a gruff chuckle. “You’re not even a doctor, yet,” the petty officer noted glibly. Tapping the child on the shoulder, the man headed off toward what he hoped was the direction of the kitchens. “Might as well be an engineer...”

 

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