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A Trip To Sickbay

Posted on Tue Jul 9th, 2019 @ 12:53am by Captain Osegan Trenna

Mission: Emergent Situation
Location: Sickbay
Timeline: Mission Day 1 at 0000

If there was one thing Maggie found dull about being a Starfleet doctor, it was definitely physicals. Starfleet personnel kept themselves very fit, so there were precious few surprises. There had been that one time when she had discovered that an ensign was three weeks pregnant- Maggie delivered the baby 8 months later- and another time, she had found a hairline fracture in a science officer's non-dominant arm. But, for the most part, they were mundane and all she did was to update their files with nearly identical information.

Never mind. next up was the Chief Engineer. Maggie had met him exactly once and they had said less than 20 words between them, but nevertheless, she felt a bit less anxious because she knew who to expect. She was always anxious meeting new people, but once she met them, she eased into comfortable conversation. She didn't know why she felt that way, but there it was. One of these days, someone would be dreadful and she'd feel justified in feeling anxious, but it had not happened as of yet.

Down in Engineering, Artie found himself growing even more frustrated. Why was it Starfleet continued to pour unrealistic expectations on its engineers. Did they not know of the endless safety regulations or even the very laws of physics? Sure, engineers had worked tirelessly to do the impossible, but forcing the Altai out of its comfortable berth in the starbase was completely unreasonable.

Yet, Artie complied because the ship's warp core was a pet project. He couldn't afford to see it fail. After all, it would be the end of his career. His only options would become janitorial work or bussing tables in some cajun restaurant in New Orleans.

But taking care of Engineering was one thing. Being ordered to sickbay for a medical exam was another. Couldn't this wait? The ship's operational capability was paramount here, not his health or the possibility of contagion. He'd been on the ships for weeks. Wouldn't people have bent over and died by now if he were sick?

At least, one would think that.

Artie found himself reluctantly transferring command of Engineering over to a mate for the time being. After all, it was better to get this over with instead of being dragged to sickbay under armed guard. That was the last thing anyone, especially Artie, needed right now.

The Chief Engineer entered Sickbay after a short walk, and he immediately started to look for the doctor he'd met that morning.

But, Maggie spotted him first. "Talbot, right?" she said as she approached. "I'm Doctor Knight, but you can still call me Maggie if you like."

"Maggie works well," Artie said, walking up to meet the doctor. "I'll let sickbay be the only reminder of this painful procedure, then."

"Painful?" laughed Maggie as she pulled out her tricorder and motioned for him to be seated on the nearby bio bed. "I'm not sure if that was a joke or an insult!"

"I don't mind doctors," Artie said as he sat on the bed. "It's just the mandatory physical I find annoying. Transfer to a new ship, get examined. Cough, get examined. See a new freckle on your skin, get examined. In the business of risk, Starfleet certainly doesn't take much when it comes to health."

"I'll let you in on a secret," Maggie told him as she started her scans. "Doctors don't like them any more than the rest of you." She grinned. "I suppose Starfleet figures they invested a lot of time into training us, so they aren't taking any chances that we'll die of something preventable. Makes sense, I suppose."

"I suppose so," Artie relented. Looking over at the doctor, and then the tricorder she held, he asked, "So what is something you like to do? Since standard physicals aren't your cup of tea."

"Childhood wellness checks," answered Maggie quickly. "There's nothing better. Even when the child is wailing like we're torturing him, it's the best thing I've ever done in my whole life."

"That's kind of sadistic for a doctor, don't you think?" Artie asked the doctor, raising an eyebrow in the process.

At first, Maggie wrinkled her brow in confusion, but then she grinned. "Not because he's wailing," she explained. "But, in spite of it. It's wonderful no matter what the disposition of the child. so wonderful, in fact, that I don't mind the wailing one bit."

"It must be a rare pleasure then," Artie said. "To see a child, knowing that they're rare on starships. Of course, practically all of Starfleet is built upon those of age and older.

"There are certainly far fewer children on starships than anywhere else," Maggie agreed, tapping at her tricorder quickly before continuing scans. "I almost wish there were more. And then, I wish there weren't any. It is a dangerous life, after all," she explained. "Seems almost cruel to drag children into it. At the same time, I can't imagine life without at least a few children running around."

"A Catch Twenty-Two then," he remarked, glancing down at the blinking medical probe. "So what does the tricorder suggest about my health thus far?"

"It suggests that you're fit as a fiddle," she said, then looked thoughtful. "How fit is a fiddle, anyway?"

Artie blinked, amazed that she'd completed the physical so quickly. He didn't even have to take off his shirt or perform any sort of testing. His last physical had lasted nearly half an hour. But, hey, he wasn't complaining anyway. "I prefer the violin or the cello personally," he offered, not quite the fan of the Americanized instrument.

"I like most any music," admitted Maggie, finishing up a couple of final scans and logging the results. "Even Klingon opera has its appeal. The only thing I can't stand is most rap."

"I prefer the opera and classical," Artie said. "Probably because it's from my English upbringing. And because it's not distracting while trying to read and work."

"That is always a plus," agreed Maggie. "For background music, I prefer smooth jazz. I find it relaxing, yet invigorating."

Artie shook his head. "I can't stand jazz. It's too... irregular."

"And that's why I like it," she replied with a grin. "I'm irregular, too. If that's the way you want to put it. Most people say weird, but you get the picture."

"I guess so," said Artie. Changing the subject back to something a little more professional, he asked, "I know the ship itself isn't in full working order. Is there anything you need from Engineering to make sure systems are up to snuff?"

"Not that I've seen so far," Maggie replied. "I mean, if you can magically produce a couple more doctors, that would actually be really great, but I think cloning is more the science department's area."

Artie shook his head. "Yeah, cloning is definitely not my department. Not to mention it's a bit unethical these days."

"Oh, that's right," said Maggie, pretending to have been reminded of that fact. "I had completely forgotten. Ah, well. I'll figure something out." She snapped her tricorder shut. "Everything looks great," she announced. "I'll update your file shortly. You're cleared for duty."

"Thanks," he remarked hopping off the biobed. "You best be careful though. You'll wind up ruining the negative impression you lot have enjoyed all these centuries."

With a grin, Maggie said, "oh, dear! Wouldn't want that, would we?"

 

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