(( Sickbay, Rinascita Station – A few minutes later ))
The team got down to business. There had been word of a medical emergency, and they were there to figure out just what it was. Acting Captain Adea likely had the diplomatic angle of things covered, so there was no need for any of them to bother with the typical niceties. Commander Yalu started looking around while Kyle started to dig into the situation.
Morgan: Can you tell us what happened?
Morka: Well, I'm not really sure what happened...
Morka lead the team over to the biobed upon which Doctor Keita was now resting before Kyle had to prompt them to see the patient.
Morka: ::pointing to the wound:: As you can see, this was a close energy discharge. Was it a weapon? Was it a localized plasma discharge from a damaged conduit? I don't know. I got here after the fact.
There were a lot of things that made Kyle wonder – where had this person received their medical training? Didn’t he know the difference between a burn from an energy weapon versus a plasma burn? There were still a lot of clues that could be determined “after the fact.” Still, there was no need to let the cat out of the bag. They were here to help.
…and to get to the bottom of what was going on.
Yalu: Even if the exact cause is unknown, we would be interested to hear your professional opinion, Doctor.
Sirin: Surely someone would have seen this incident?
Morgan: You said you got here after the fact? What happened when you arrived?
Morka: I stabilized and sedated him so I could work on the wound itself. Though ::gesturing around the sickbay:: I'm rather limited to what I have to work with. Usually the worst injury on Rinascita is a bruise from fighting. We don't get a lot of injuries here.
Kyle nodded sympathetically. The Resolution’s sickbay was functional, though far from state of the art. He longed for the days on the Thor when Addison was CMO of the Vesta-class’s facilities.
Yalu: The limited facilities are certainly no fault of yours. ::beat, gestures to himself and his team:: We’ve all cared for patients under less-than-ideal circumstances. We know how difficult it can be.
Sirin: Did you manage to speak with him before his unconsciousness?
Morka: I did not. I was having my morning coffee and everyone was suddenly running to sickbay. I followed along and then saw this.
Coffee? Followed along? Didn’t they have a way of reporting when there was a medical emergency?
Morgan: Can you walk me through any theories you might have?
Morka: Yes, come closer. ::pointing down into the wound:: My first thought was that he'd been shot with some sort of weapon. But notice how the wound goes deep, into the lung in fact. Most energy weapons, burns are superficial and the internal trauma caused by the dissipation of energy to the nerves. This is why I'm confused.
Kyle wasn’t sure if the Argelian was hiding something, or if he just didn’t have the necessary education to make a proper assessment. He was well on the right track, though.
Morgan: Would you mind if I take a look? Our instruments may be able to provide a more thorough analysis…
Morka: Absolutely, Doctor! Please do!
His willingness to let an outsider conduct an exam was a good sign, at least. Kyle opened his tricorder and started his exam as the others continued.
Sirin: Is there a time you believe the doctor will awaken? His injuries do not appear life threatening, but as I am not a physician, I defer to your prognosis.
Yalu: We would also like very much to speak with Dr. Keita. ::beat:: When your security chief retracted the distress call, he said that the doctor was in a panic. We’d like to know what caused that panic. Can you revive him?
Morka: Gosh, I don't know anything about a distress call. You'll have to ask the Chief. Was he near the Doctor when it happened? Reviving him right now is out of the question...
Yalu: I see. ::beat:: We appreciate your allowing us to board your station and– ::beat:: visit. Believe me, I know how you must feel. When I practiced medicine, there’s nothing I liked less than when some doctor I’d never met interfered with how I treat my patients.
Sirin: Especially when all the pertinent facts were not presented.
Morka was growing slightly irritated. Kyle couldn’t blame him, really, but he also wasn’t in a position to shoot Meidra or Yogan a set of eyes that would suggest them to ease up a bit.
Morka: ...as I was saying, until your Doctor can close the wound.
Morgan: I can help.
Kyle removed a dermal regenerator from the medkit and held it up, then started in on the wound.
Yalu: But I am afraid we cannot just ignore Dr. Keita’s distress call. He is a Human, from Earth, which makes him a Federation citizen, and our duty to protect. We will need to speak with him, or at least see evidence demonstrating to our satisfaction that his injuries were not the result of foul play.
Kyle closed his eyes and resisted the urge to shake his head as he overheard the comment.
Morka: I understand your duty, but even you, as a former Doctor, must understand we need to make sure he lives first.
Morgan: I agree with Dr. Morka… The extent of the injuries were not insignificant – it may be in the patient’s best interest to keep him sedated for a little while.
Sirin: I can sense that he wishes to awaken. But past that, I am not able to read his thoughts. As a counselor, I know that there are times where people feel safer in their own mind, to protect themselves. I do not feel that with this patient. He wants to be awake.
Morka: Well that's good! He has a will to live.
Kyle coughed loudly, hoping that it would be enough to get Yalu’s attention as he pivoted.
Morgan: Doctor, would you mind giving me a hand?
He didn’t need the hand. He needed the questioning to take a less accusatory tone, otherwise they risked alienating someone who had more information to offer.
Morka: Yes, Doctor. I'll happily assist you. You just tell me what you need!
He handed the dermal regenerator over to Morka.
Morgan: I’d like you to watch how I’m closing this wound – I’ve got a trick for making sure things heal with minimal scarring.
Morka moved closer and watched the doctor work, drawing attention to particular movements while emphasizing the technique. Prior to completion, he handed the device to his counterpart.
Morgan: I’d like you to finish closing this wound using this technique while I speak with my colleagues. I’ll be back in a moment to check your work.
Morka: Yes, Doctor. Right away!
Kyle smiled and nodded reassuringly while shifting his gaze toward the others as he nodded to a quiet space across the room.
Morgan: Commander, respectfully, we don’t know this man’s role in what happened here. If your inquiries take a tone that’s too aggressive, you risk alienating him before we learn exactly what happened.
Morgan: It was very clearly a disruptor blast, but I don’t think my friend over there has enough training in forensics to be able to tell much more than that. For as deep as it was, the shot had to have come from a very close range, so the doctor either never saw the blast coming, or he knew the person who did it.
His lips pulled to one side.
Morgan: I don’t disagree that it’s probably better that the patient remain sedated, though I don’t agree that it’s totally necessary… The sedation he’s under is pretty heavy, likely on purpose. Regardless, it may buy us some time as the other teams try to learn more, and I think there’s more our friend can tell us, but I’d suggest a change in tactics.
Morgan and the others made their way back to Morka. Kyle looked over the doctor’s shoulder, examining the incision.
Morgan: Hey, that’s pretty good. What did you think of the technique?
Tag, and TBC!
Lieutenant Kyle Morgan
Assistant Chief Medical Officer