((Examination Room - Medical Centre - Grand Mezzanine - Amity Outpost))
Ne sat down again on the bed, clutching nir head and tucking it between nir knees. This feeling was familiar. It had happened before, when ne was a sapling oO no - a child Oo in the desert oO no - on J’naii. Oo It wasn’t unheard of for bad soup bugs oO infections Oo to cause trouble like this. Brain fog, dizziness, delusional behaviour… only it was far more common in children. It was something nir people referred to as “trinaar fust gal’ek minaar” - the ramblings of sick children.
Suribana: If there’s a risk of infection we should isolate the medical bay, inform the Ops Chief to set up a quarantine and we might start working on something to attenuate the symptoms and use the scans of Kivik here to identify the strain that’s causing nir symptoms and work on a vaccine of our own while we wait for the ones you’ll request.
Wong: We have less than 29 hours to synthesize something provided we haven’t caught this ourselves. I’ll put in a call to Ops and get the quarantine set up so we can work as safe as we can. I’ll also put a call into the lab and see if they can synthesize a vaccine against this. In the meantime, it’s going to be a long 29 hours….
Kivik had to do something. The other two were talking, but nir jumping on the bed seemed to have cleared things up momentarily. Ne grabbed a PADD off a nearby cart and started typing: J’naii sickness makes brain confused. Can’t predict actions. Recommend wrapping me in rice oO No! That’s not right… Oo Kivik deleted the last few words. Keep me away from danger. Can’t control self.
Suribana: Ne seems to be willing to tell us something...
Ikaia glanced at Kivik.
Wong: Hi, Kivik. Are you trying to tell us something?
Kivik: ::Handing Suribana the PADD:: You see?! The soup made a recording of a legend.
Suribana: I suggest we follow the suggestion. A containment field around the biobed, maybe strap ner to it.
He peered over at the PADD Suribana was holding. Ikaia was already biting his bottom lip. He was reading it.
Wong: Well, I was able to rule out an aphasia virus before and I can definitely rule one out now. Ne can communicate clearly via text but this is….
Wong: Let’s work through this, okay? ::Glancing at Kivik:: Hey, Kivik. I understand you’re not feeling well today. Listen, Doctor Suribana and I are going to do our best to make you feel better.
Kivik: That’s a solid foundation to build a tower to the stars on.
Ikaia glanced over at Suribana.
Wong: I’ll call Ops and get things sorted out. As far as Kivik goes, ne’s going to need a decongestant and an NSAID with some tryptophan-lysine distillate. If you want to take care of that, that’d be great.
Suribana: All right, I’ll see to it.
Kivik wracked nir brain trying to recall what exactly an “Enessay Idee” was, but couldn’t make heads nor tails of it.
Kivik: ::Worried:: Is the cactus getting… pruned? That won’t be necessary!
Suribana moved to a cabinet and took an hypospray, moving then to pick up the NSAID and the tryptophan-lysine distollate. Somehow, the doctor liked to use the acronym instead of the full name of the drug, fortunately, she’s used to that by working with other Starfleet officers, so she came back with an inhaler and the hypo.
Suribana: All right, I need you to inhale this. It’ll help you
Kivik: ::Relieved:: Ahhh – a gentle breeze through the trees. Why didn’t you write me about this earlier, Minister? I’m no arborist but I like a good breath of fresh soup. ::Sitting on the biobed and kicking nir legs to and fro:: Will this make the moon climb? I couldn’t reach it right now if I tried!
Suribana: No, the moon is not that… :: thinking for a second :: Oh, no, this will not make you sleep, it’ll help to breath. Like… a cold shower for,... the dessert to,... ice…
She tried to mimic ner line of speaking, not sure if she’s making any success. However, as soon as she had the chance, she injected the patient with the hypospray, not sure what nir reaction will be, she did it with her right hand while raising her forearm to the level of nir shoulders to block a possible reaction to her face.
Kivik watched intently as the Minister carefully administered some paint to nir trunk. The brush tickled a little bit, but ne stood very still - despite the blazing hot breeze which threatened to make nem sway and fall.
Kivik: I can’t wait to see the final portrait when you’re done, Minister.
Suribana: It’s done! Now we just wait to see it working.
((10 Hours Later))
Kivik awoke in a biobed, nir head throbbing and sore – but it was no longer a cactus and the bugs seemed to have settled down for a while. Nir soup, no… nir thoughts were making sense again. Ne decided to try sitting up and, as ne did, ne was overcome with nausea and reached for the conveniently-placed receptacle, spitting the remains of far too many marshmallows into it as ne groaned.
When that passed at long last, ne put down the receptacle and looked at nir surroundings. Ne had been put in a biobed surrounding by containment fields. Ne looked down at nemself and found that nir uniform had been traded for a patient’s gown.
Kivik: ::Hoarse:: What… happened?
This was already starting to be a long shift. The Klingon CMO had started the day trying to figure out what vaccines to order. Now? He was stuck in quarantine with not only Kivik but one of his fellow medical officers as well. Almost to add insult to injury, the replicator in this patient room couldn’t replicate a good coffee. Ikaia was sitting and conversing with Suribana when he heard Kivik puking. He spun around and was paying attention to the ensign as ne started talking. Nir voice sounded hoarse and raspy to him. No doubt from a combination of the flu and vomiting.
Wong: Hey, Kivik. You came in well… er… not all there. You were unwell and unfortunately, still are.
Suribana: We’ll probably be able to get you recovered, but you’re showing great signs of delusion and hyperactivity. In your distress we’re exposed to whatever affected you while you’re hanging around and jumping from one side to the other of the room.
Kivik: Was I? Oh no… ::To Suribana:: I’m so sorry if I did or said anything that… This is not generally how I prefer to meet new people.
Wong: It’s okay. I wouldn’t worry about that. We’re here to help you get better.
He really wanted to see Kivik happy and healthy again. At the same time, he was concerned for Suribana and himself. So far, both medical officers have tested negative in their scans. That was the good news. As for Kivik, at least ne wasn’t delirious right now.
Falina took some readings from Kivik, as it was easier with nem quiet over the biobed.
Suribana: Now that you’re back to your senses, … I’m doctor Suribana and you’ve been affected by something that affected your sinuses. When was the last time you’ve suffered from that kind of affection?
Kivik: I haven’t been sick like this since I was a child. This can happen to many J’naii when they are younger - a rambling sickness brought on by swollen sinuses. What am I sick with? It must be terrible.
Ikaia glanced over at Suribana for a moment before turning his attention to Kivik.
Wong: Unfortunately, you have Levodian flu. As it’s a seasonal illness, we think it’s this year’s strain.
Coughing, sneezing, sore throat, fever, achy muscles, and headaches were the most common symptoms of Levodian flu. As it turns out, so was deliriousness for J’naii.
Suribana: Knowing what we’re up against is a good thing.
The Levodian Flu wasn’t familiar to Kivik. Ne began to worry - oO If it’s affecting me this badly, is it serious? Oo
Kivik: Am I… going to live?
Wong: Oh no! It’s not deadly. Unpleasant, yes. As many cases of the flu typically are in healthy individuals. But it only lasts 29 hours approximately and with our care as well, you’ll make a full recovery. That much I can say.
Suribana: If we had our full stock of medicines and equipment, this should be easy to go through. With our limited resources in this room, we’ll have to do through the time doctor Wong specified. You should have informed the senior medical officer the moment you had the first symptoms.
Ikaia glanced at Suribana. That was a little harsh, in his opinion.
Kivik: ::Exasperated:: I… How was I to know? I didn’t… I just woke up and things were so confusing. I’m just glad I made it here. To be honest, I wasn’t entirely sure what was happening, where I was, or even who I was!
Wong: Well, we’re here to help. Doctor Suribana and I have your back. You’re going to feel like garbage for a little while longer. But we’ll be there for you, okay? We’ll help you get better.
Suribana: That’s what doctors do.
Wong: Anyways, how are you feeling?
Kivik: ::Gingerly touching nir cranial ridges:: Ugh… Terrible. Whatever you’ve given me has done the trick - at least for now… Are you both feeling okay? I’d hate to think that I passed this along to either of you. Is that why you’re both here with me?
Suribana: I’m feeling well, maybe feeling a bit warmer, but it seems it could be because of our situation.
Wong: Yes. I figured as much. But we can get you something to make you more comfortable.
Kivik curled up on the biobed again. The room felt as if it were spinning again and ne could barely hang on to the bed beneath nem without flying off of it. And ne was cold… so cold.
Kivik: ::Teeth beginning to chatter:: Maybe a warmer… blanket?
Ikaia paused as he was getting up.
Wong: As to why we’re here, ah… well… Doctor Suribana and I need to stay with you due to current circumstances. Because of how contagious the Levodian flu is, we have to isolate those who may have contracted it.
Suribana: Or who we believe could be exposed to it.
Kivik: ::Devastated:: Oh no… I’d hate to pass this along to either of you! I hope you aren’t sick.
Wong: Huh? Oh no. Doctor Suribana and I aren’t sick. However, we were all in close contact with each other.
Suribana: We should maintain the quarantine until we can determine that we’re free of any contagious agent.
Kivik: ::Thinking:: I must have caught this from one of the merchants in the Mezzanine. I was in perfect health travelling back from J’naii and saw so few people. Even aboard the Thor I was feeling well. It was only after we arrived that I got sick - and the first thing I did was visit nearly every shop in the Mezzanine. Somebody there must have put bugs in the soup.
Kivik’s eyes opened wide.
Ikaia could already see the panic in Kivik’s eyes. He was going to try to get Kivik to calm down.
Wong: You’re going to be okay. We’re here to help. Just take things slow.
Suribana: We’ll pass this information to ops so they can start checking people we know were there to see if they’ve contracted it . If they did, we might have to isolate a bigger portion of the station.
Kivik: The quibbling ministers of commerce must have jettisoned bugs into the soup and made it all spongey!
The J’naii clasped nir hand over nir mouth. It was happening again… The nonsense was back. Ne could feel the burning feeling returning to nir forehead. Ne tried to concentrate and push through it, talking very slowly.
Kivik: If.. I.. caught.. it.. there.. who.. knows.. who.. else.. has.. It…
Suribana: That’s why we’re working on it to detect any other reservoir of the flu and act accordingly with the established protocols for these situations.
Of course, that was well within a possibility when Ikaia set up the quarantines and notified Ops. But now they had a potential source for infection.
Wong: It’s okay. We’ll figure this out.
Kivik: Ensign.. Barnacles.. oO No! Oo ..Reade.. living… with.. me…
That was bad. For starters, Ikaia knew that Lieutenant JG Reade was no longer an ensign for at least six months. That meant that Kivik was definitely losing nir’s grasp on reality again. Ikaia replicated another hypospray with a stronger decongestant and a box of tissues. He returned with the blanket in hand along with everything else. Then there was the fact that Reade might have caught the flu as well. He would have to inform him of this too.
Wong: Okay, Kivik? I’ve got a stronger decongestant for you to help take the pressure off your sinuses. It might make you feel a little sleepy and your nose is probably going to run. But this should help you, okay?
Suribana: If you find any other symptoms other than the running nose and sleeplessness, tell us immediately.
She gave the man a reassuring pat in the shoulder. Ikaia calmly administered the hypospray to Kivik’s neck before passing nem a box of tissues. She set up a bin for the used ones to be dropped.
Kivik: ::In J’naii:: Yaja’ak…
Suribana: Here you are. As the medicine does its work, you might feel warmer.
Ikaia finally draped the blanket across Kivik’s body to help keep nem warm.
The J’naii curled up in a small ball under the blanket, shivering and groaning as the medication began to kick in. Ne wished ne could just go back to sleep and stay that way until it was over. Trying to make sense of the world felt impossible.
Wong: Okay. You’re going to be okay. The medication doesn’t take long before you feel it working.
Kivik: ::Nodding slightly:: The river flows.
Suribana: Let it flow, let it flow, don’t hold it back anymore.
He thought back to Suribana saying that she felt too warm. He was going to have to scan her again. If either he or his fellow medical officer were to be infected, that would leave them short staffed within this quarantine. The remaining medical officer would have to carry the weight of two patients.
Wong: I know. It doesn’t feel that great. But at the same time, we know it’s working. It means we can start moving in a positive direction.
Suribana: If that works, it’ll indicate that it’s not a serious problem and we can finish it quickly
Ikaia glanced at Suribana. He motioned to her.
Wong: Would it be okay if I scanned you again, Doctor?
Suribana: Of course, I’m a doctor, I’m used to scans, so it’s no problem.
Ikaia pulled out his tricorder and gave the good doctor another scan.
Wong: How are you feeling?
Suribana: I feel fine, but the sealed environment and the pressure of treating ne before we knew what we’re dealing with might have made my sensations become… stronger than usual. But it’s not unheard of that emotions affect perception.
He looked over the scans again. Suribana still came up clear and he was grateful for that.
Wong: Good news is that you’re still in the clear.
Suribana: I guess all we have to do now is wait for ner recovery.
Ikaia checked his PADD. Still no word from the lab about whether or not they have a vaccine against this strain. He hoped that his staff was okay in there.
Wong: Agreed. We have 19 hours left to go. How bad can that be…?
Lieutenant Ikaia Wong PA-C
Chief Medical Officer
Ensign Kivik (ne/nem/nir)