An Unconventional Relationship
Posted on Sun Jun 26th, 2011 @ 12:46pm by Lieutenant Elena Valdez
Location: Star Base 911
After eating lunch and meeting her new crew mate, Elena's next priority was to find accommodations until the arrival of the Iapetus. She wasn't sure when that was going to be; she was told the nature of the ship's current mission made it difficult to pinpoint an arrival date. The delay didn't bother the doctor much; in fact, she was eager to do a little exploring.
Finding temporary quarters proved to be relatively easy. Elena flung her bags into the room, barely sparing a glance at the quarters in her eagerness to be off.
The doctor's first stop in her explorations would have surprised no one: the medical facility. Star Base 911 offered a large state of the art sickbay, complete with well-stocked laboratories and the latest advances in medical equipment. She was hoping the station's chief medical officer would let her do some snooping, or better yet, show her around.
Upon arrival at sickbay the CMO, a middle-aged gentleman by the name of Dr. Scheler, proclaimed himself delighted to give Elena a tour. He waltzed her through patient treatment areas filled with biobeds and holographic imaging arrays. Dr. Scheler next spun Elena through various labs dedicated to gene therapy, disease research, and the synthesis of pharmaceuticals.
At the conclusion of her tour, the star base's CMO was escorting Elena towards the exit when one of the nurses let out a startled yell. A dark haired man had staggered into sick bay. Thick purple blood pulsed from between his fingers as he tried to hold together a wide tear across his abdomen. His blue-eyed gaze was wild and unfocused; his mixed Klingon features were twisted in pain and fury. He lurched two more steps, growled out something incomprehensible, and collapsed in a gory heap.
Dr. Scheler, the nurse, and Elena all sprang into action. The man was hoisted to a biobed. Elena was helping Dr. Scheler place the patient in cryostasis in preparation for surgery when she finally got a good look at the injured man's face.
"Ethan!?" The hypospray Elena had been holding clattered to the floor.
Dr. Scheler glanced at her with one eyebrow raised. "You know this guy?"
"Yeah," replied Elena as she retrieved the hypospray. She quickly administered a dose of asinolyathin. "And somehow I'm not surprised he's shown up with a knife wound in his gut."
Ethan Djemrai was partly of Klingon blood, but clearly chose to embrace his human side. He had a day's worth of stubble on his jaw and his dark brown hair was cut short. He had that "space cowboy" look to him, which Elena remembered well, and a long scar down one cheek, which was new. It would be easy enough to remove, but Elena suspected that Ethan liked the way it looked. He had always tried a little too hard to maintain his roguish image. And of course, he currently had a huge bloody hole in his stomach, which would be best fixed sooner rather than later.
"You're the ranking physician here, Dr. Scheler," continued Elena, "but if you'll permit I'd like to perform this operation. I know a bit about this man's physiology."
Mixed species, such as the part-Klingon man laying before them, were often difficult to treat because the traits of their parents often combined in unexpected ways. One example was that Klingons had several redundant organs, while humans did not. The offspring of the two may have all of the redundancies, some of them, or none at all depending on what genes were passed along. It wasn't unheard of for mixed-species siblings to have vast anatomical differences. Because of this, Dr. Scheler was happy to let Elena take the lead.
"I'll assist," he said with a nod.
Working quickly, Doctors Valdez and Scheler reattached severed arteries, regenerated assorted organ tissue, and knit back together the butchered abdominal muscles. After three hours of surgery, Elena was tired but satisfied. The part-Klingon man's skin was still somewhat tender, but it was intact with no scarring. The patient would hurt like hell for a few days, but he was once again whole.
Dr. Scheler passed a dermal regenerator over the wound a final time. "So," he began conversationally, "how do you know this guy again?"
Elena winced. She could lie, but the other doctor would probably find out anyway. "He's the idiot I was idiotic enough to marry."
The other doctor just stared at her, quite surprised and apparently at a loss for what to say.
"I didn't expect to see him here," muttered Elena unnecessarily, not meeting the stare. She was very glad the patient, her estranged husband, was still unconscious, although that was likely to change as soon as they pulled him out of cryostasis.
Not wanting to explain more about the man on the table, Elena slapped a smile on her face and said, "I can finish up here, Doctor. I'm sure you have other duties to attend to."
Scheler took the hint and left. With a sigh Elena turned off the bioregenerative field and gave Ethan 2 cc's of netinaline. The stimulant acted quickly; within a moment Ethan was blinking, groaning, and attempting to roll off the biobed. The burly half-Klingon was normally quite strong, but so shortly after major surgery Elena could easily restrain him with one hand planted on his chest.
"Hi there, honey." Her voice was thick with sarcasm.
Ethan stared at her for a moment, as if his wife were the last thing he expected to find on a star base. Which she was. Then his face split into a wide, feral smile. "I always knew you'd end up in space," he said. "I knew it. Life in Mexico was too tame for you." He fell back to the biobed with a very smug look on his face.
Elena snorted. "My mother would have to argue with that if she were here. And then she would remind me to divorce you."
"You haven't yet? I'm touched," responded Ethan. "Does that mean the patient can get a conjugal visit?" He wiggled is eyebrows suggestively.
"Hardly," responded Elena dryly. "Your intestines aren't the only thing I fixed."
The panic on Ethan's face was extremely satisfying. He even reached down to check that everything was still there.
"So," continued Elena once Ethan realized his manhood was still intact, "someone around here must really hate you. I'm not surprised, although I am curious as to why you're on Star Fleet property. I'm guessing station security would be very interested to know you are here."
Wincing, Ethan attempted to sit up, and this time Elena let him. "I'll have you know I'm respectable now. I'm here doing an honest bit of trading. Things just got a little out of hand with my client, is all. A minor disagreement."
"You call being disemboweled 'a minor disagreement?'" asked Elena. "Well. Since you're so honest and respectable now, I'm sure you'll want to report this incident. Why don't I go get the security chief for you?"
"Ah, that won't be necessary," responded Ethan, a little too quickly.
"Really, I'm very happy to," Elena said sweetly.
Her husband conveniently chose that moment to notice her Star Fleet uniform. "So you're a Fleetie now? That's a little surprising. You don't like rules."
"But I live with them, unlike you." She didn't bother to hide the belligerence in her voice. "And yes, I'm here waiting for my first assignment to arrive. I'm to be the new chief medical officer on a starship."
"Good for you," Ethan replied simply, and he actually sounded sincere. He smiled, and Elena almost smiled back before thinking better of it.
"Thank you," she responded stoically. "Well, you're patched up and free to go. I'll be sure to let you know when I get around to divorcing you."
Ethan stood up from the biobed and looked down at the doctor. "I know it's been a long time, Elena, but I've missed you. How 'bout I buy you dinner tonight?"
She barely restrained herself from slapping him. "How 'bout you leave before I call security?"
And he did.
Lt. JG Elena Valdez
Chief Medical Officer