USS Adelphi


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Post 16 - On Vulcan Ear a Romulan Knife

Posted on Sun Nov 8th, 2020 @ 11:57pm by Lieutenant Emni t'Nai & Lieutenant Commander Karim MD
Edited on on Sun Nov 8th, 2020 @ 11:59pm

Mission: Episode 2 - The Next Phage
Location: Deck Eight - Sickbay
Timeline: Prior to Away Mission

[USS Adelphi]
[Deck Eight - Sickbay]
[Prior to away mission]

"Your service record did not indicate a wealth of experience in this particular field, Doctor."

Counsellor Karim remarked from his standing position beside a nearby biobed, hands clasped tightly behind his back as he regarded the set of surgical instruments arrayed next to him. "Perhaps it would be prudent to permit the holographic replacement to perform the procedure." He then glanced back to his companion with a slightly-arched brow. "I presume it will conduct your own surgery."

"Although I'm sure the LMH is perfectly capable of working with Romulan physiology, I am the last one on Dr. Grey's docket." Emni replied conversationally deliberately ignoring the counselor's verbal jab and picking up one of the various tools Karim had been eyeing up. "Besides that I was trained on Romulan physiology which, to your benefit, is not that dramatically different from your own. Could you sit on the biobed please?"

As she waited for him to comply she let her own emotional sensitivies reach out. In the weeks since her first conversation with Karim she had been deliberately developing her understanding of his emotional profile, determined not to let his Vulcan emotional control prevent her from recognizing and engaging with him in the same way she did other crew members. She just found his emotional makeup to be more subtle. His emotions right now, unlike many of her other encounters with him, struck her as both closed off and inquisitive. As if he was in disagreement over whether to be curious or remain entirely aloof.

"Yes, Doctor Grey - your immediate predecessor and superior officer," Karim redundantly observed as he relented and assumed position on the biobed, brushing out some creases in his clothing as he did so. "It seems your earlier proposal carries more merit than you had previously envisioned." He locked eyes with her. "Heaven did not forbid it, it seems."

"So it seems indeed." She replied a hint of discomfort creeping into her voice. When she had made that statement she had meant to suggest that something untoward could happen to Dr. Grey. Things of that nature happened from time to time in deep space. It was a risk all of them accepted when agreeing to their assignment. She hadn't meant it for if the CMO might voluntarily give up her position and certainly hadn't anticipated finding herself in charge of Sickbay while her predecessor was still onboard.

"So," she said selecting a surgical tool meant to alter physical characteristics such as Karim's ears, "when we get back you owe me a game of kal-toh."

"'Owing' implies an exchange, either previously or prospectively, between us, Doctor," Karim retorted, although he was now being perfectly still and compliant for the procedure as his eyes continued to watch the doctor's. "More accurately, your psychiatric welfare now comes under my direct purview. When we get back, you will 'owe' me a session as a patient at my office." He now looked forwards again, eyes breaking away from t'Nai's. "I will then be able to determine if you are, in fact, a remarkable specimen in Starfleet, worthy of increased attention and allegiance, or perhaps a refugee seeking purpose."

Emni raised one of her eyebrows, hands not wavering from her task as Karim's eyes followed her own before turning away.

"Do you always take everything everyone says literally or was that little but of repartee just for fun?" She asked letting her amusement at his specific description of her colloquial use of 'owe' color her voice.

She stepped back a moment surveying Karim's now mismatched ears. After determining her work sufficient she moved to his other side.

"I'm not sure if I should be flattered that you feel I now warrant a counseling session or alarmed that you just told me you were going to use said session to evaluate my fitness as an ally. Do you put all of your potential friends though a psychic evaluation before you interact with them or just the most interesting ones?"

She finished his other ear and stepped back to check her work. One of the most telling things of surgical changes like these was perfection. If the changes looked too identical and lacked any differences, even minute ones, they might draw unwanted attention. Satisfied that his ears were sufficiently changed she waved at the biobed.

"It's easier if you lay back for this next bit." She said turning back to her equipment to give him a moment to comply.

Karim watched the doctor for a moment longer before acceding to her suggestion. As he settled himself backwards, eyes now looking directly upwards, there was a slight incline of his eyebrow as he spoke once more.

"It was my understanding that 'friends' do have 'fun' with one another," he stated coolly, allowing t'Nai to continue her cosmetic work on him, gradually shifting his Vulcanoid appearance into something quite different (even if his manner remained unmistakably Vulcan). "Flattery is oft employed cynically to achieve one's ulterior goals. But, yes. It is wise for an individual to select their allies cautiously; there is wisdom in knowledge, and knowledge is so frequently gained through experience."

Finally, Karim's eyes flicked back to t'Nai's. "I intend to seek out these experiences. You merit a modicum of attention, at the very least."

Emni's hands stilled in their work a moment at Karim's last comment as she took a moment to collect her thoughts. Somehow she hadn't expected the Vulcan to acquiesce to her point in any way.To anyone else the action, in its brevity, might seem as though she was simply pausing to evaluate her work, but she suspected that was not the case with Karim and was rewarded with a wash of curiosity underneath the still surface of his emotional makeup. A slight flush crept up her cheeks, her surprise giving her away.

As quickly as she paused she moved back to her work moving down to make minimal adjustments to the counsellor's hands. She waited until she was out of easy eye contact to respond.

"Should I take that as flattery or statement of fact?" she asked, her voice level but quiet.

"Yes," he replied simply and ambiguously.

Having apparently noted the part-Romulan's response, Karim settled his eyes back to regarding the luminescent ceiling of the Adelphi's antiquatedly-designed sickbay's ceiling. And, whilst it was a mere murmur of a rogue emotional current coursing through the surly counsellor's suppressed psyche, there was the barest hint of self-satisfaction betrayed to t'Nai's empathic senses.

Clearly, Karim was of the mindset that whatever response his opponent (for lack of better terminology) had to his quandaries and assertions, that undoubtedly spoke more about their character than if they made a correct deduction. It was unlikely there would be any forthcoming clarification from him, quite purposefully.

A spike of annoyance clashed with her own curiosity as she felt self-satisfaction chase down the counselor's curiosity, the two emotions overlapping like ripples in a pond that had reached a shoreline. Whatever he may think of her and her value as an ally, crew member, or even just person, it was evident he didn't intend to say more.

She finished the last of her adjustments moving to the side of the biobed again.

"You can sit up." She said, something resembling amusement crossing her features as Karim complied.

She pulled out her tricorder, starting down the post-op checklist she had completed on other team members.

"It's lucky that we will be on the same away team," she commented. "Between owing me a game of kal-toh, owing you a psychiatric session, and encountering an alien race together I imagine there will be plenty of opportunity for shared experiences."

"The benefits of not only being crewmates in medical professions," Karim replied as the tricorder provided the expected results, "but also of being seventy thousand lightyears away from home." He followed this with a nod to the doctor as she closed the handheld device, but was quite prompt in picking up a small handheld mirror she had left by the biobed for his benefit.

With a quick inspection of his new visage, Karim barely quirked an eyebrow at the results of t'Nai's handiwork and made a very non-Vulcan gesture of touching the tip of one barely-visible non-pointed ear. He just as quickly handed the mirror to her and rose from his position.

"Most satisfactory, Doctor. Perhaps we will have similarly enlightening conversation during the next surgery." The counsellor offered another nod to her. "Until the away mission."

Emni inclined her head back to the counsellor. Tendrils of satisfaction emanated from the Vulcan as he evaluated her handiwork--neither matching the particular flavor of arrogant self satisfaction, nor clearly directed at her.

"Until then." She said, turning to head back to her office in preparation for her own physical transformation. As she began to turn her mind to the next task she allowed herself a small smile. These ought to be some interesting shared experiences indeed.

=/\= A Mission Post By =/\=

Lieutenant Commander Karim MD
Ship's Counsellor

Lieutenant Emni i-Rizz t'Nai
Chief Medical Officer


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