USS Pioneer NCC - 74757


Docked at Starbase Sirius
Speed: Docked
Shields: Nominal
Hull: Nominal
Systems: All Systems Nominal

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Time to Heal

Posted on Sat Sep 5th, 2020 @ 5:00pm by Lieutenant Richard Ballston M.D. PsyD & Lieutenant Junior Grade Kara Li & Abigail Ballston
Edited on on Mon Sep 7th, 2020 @ 1:58am

Mission: Episode 10 - New Home, Same Pioneers
Location: Chief Counselor's Office
Timeline: MD003 1900 hours
2403 words - 5 OF Standard Post Measure

Richard had walked beside his daughter coaxing her along to her new appointment. He had held off on sending her to counseling until he was sure she was ready to start talking about the issues created by losing a mother and her kidnapping.

Things had been hard at first, but being a trained and experienced counselor himself he was able to handle the behavior issues that had arisen. It was time for the seven-year-old to face her fears and cope with the new reality she faced.

Standing in front of Kara's office door he looked over at Abigail who smiled back and nodded knowing her father well enough to know he was about to press the door chime. Richard chuckled and offered a broad smile, "I think you will like Counselor Li, she's a really nice person, you might even have some things in common."

Abigail watched as her father's finger pressed the button-like device and smiled, "that would be nice Daddy..."

She stopped short of finishing her sentence but the Azzian father already knew the rest, 'she wasn't Mommy Adibah'.

Kara honestly hadn't been doing much, truthful, she'd scheduled as many of her appointment out as far as possible. She wanted a couple of days to read up on the crew, get the lay of the land, and visit her sister. It had been nice having Kaia close, the two hadn't really spent much time together. This was certainly going to be a change. She looked over at the door as the chime sounded. She set down her glass of Deka tea and walked over to the door. The doors opened to reveal a man and a small child. Kara nodded, to the father, "Lieutenant Ballson," she smiled. She knelt down so she was eye level with the child, "and you must be Abigal," she offered a hand, "I am Kara, it's nice to meet you."

The girl smiled and curtsied in the traditional Azzian greeting, "may time be kind to you Counselor Li, yes I am Abigail."

As Abigail had been doing since arriving back she was wearing a traditional Azzian Saree-like gown, this one had a base color of dark blue to match her eyes and with a pretty floral Red and pink print. This time She had left her head uncovered, something she had taken to knowing that having her face draped, sort of like under a hood was a sign of mourning.

Richard smiled and nodded, "good to see you again counselor, thank you for seeing us."

"Not a problem," Kara gestured further in, "may I get either if you something to drink?" She walked over to the replicator, "and what brings you to my office?" she added.

Richard nodded he looked at his daughter which simply looked back at him with pleading eyes wanting him to answer the question, "I'm sure you have heard about the attack on Empoc Nor, counselor, Shortly before the incident Adibah Veā€™hassi one of the Azzian Ambassadors was murdered, she was one of my wives and a mother for Abigail." He placed a hand on her the girl's shoulder and continued, about the same time Abigail was kidnapped and was only found during the evacuation of the starbase."

The physician's explanation was straight forward and to the point but he really wanted the counselor to pull the details out of her daughter during counseling.

No matter how long it had been, or how much she attempted to deal with it there was always that hint of pain that crept over her when someone spoke about a lost parent. Each time it truly made her miss her own father. "I wasn't much older than you when my father passed away," Kara gently gestured to an open chair, "I am truly sorry for your family's loss. I can't imagine losing a spouse. Losing a parent was tough enough."

Richard nodded and offered a faint smile, "thank you, counselor," he looked down at Abigail wondering how she would reply."

Abigale blinked, "you lost your father?" The girl questioned as her dark eyes widened in disbelief.

The child's eyes looked over at her father and then back at the woman, "do all children lose a mommy or daddy?"

Kara realized her mistake, almost immediately. It was a topic that she knew most Star Fleet parents discussed with their children, it was a part of the job. "No sweetheart, most children do not," Kara smiled. "Most Mommys and Daddys live a very long time," she added. She motioned to a table nearby as she nodded to the girl's father. Walking over to the table, Kara pulled out several items meant to help children relax. There were several toys, a pad for drawing, and several rather worn looking stuffed animals. "Why don't you tell me about your mother?" Kara asked, picking up one of the pads she started to draw.

The girl had looked behind to her father as if asking if it was ok but plotted along dutifully to the table. She smiled as she sat down taking a pad without prompting then began to answer the counselor's question. "Mommy Adiba was really nice to me, Abigail replied, She loved to get me dresses and show me how to make Azzian foods." Her dark blue eyes were fixed on the pad and her small hands worked quickly to create an image." She smiled and looked up at Kara, she had a sister too, Lei'halla."

"Mommies are pretty good at that," Kara continued to draw, as she glanced over at the child's drawing.

Richard followed behind quietly observing with a faint smile on his face. It was good to have his little girl come back to life, as it were, and it seemed the two were getting along well. He had talked, several times, about the possibilities of danger, that he or one of her mothers could be killed but murder, murder had not been part of the discussion. He noticed that Abigail had regressed too in her speech patterns. Often she sounded more mature than she did now and that disturbed him. Yet, it all took time and he was certain that in time Abigail would heal.

"My mommy loved to show me how to cook," she continued to draw not looking up at the child. It was important to gain her trust first, "both my sister and I love to cook, but don't tell her I'm a better cook then she is. What other things did you like to do with your Mommy?" she asked. If only the kid knew, her own mother wasn't that warm, kind, or caring figure. She was a taskmaster, someone who demanded perfection and didn't care how she got it. Kara was lucky that in her years, she had met good parents. It was times like these that she was very glad to have branched out into the Federation. "Did you ever go on a special vacation?"

"Oh yes, Abigail said with a broad smile, "When I visited Azzia and met my big family." She tilted her head as she some large strokes on her picture, "I got to meet so many people and ate such good food." she almost stopped but then added, Oh and I got to see a big yellow cat, daddy told me they were rare, I just thought they were pretty."

The picture the girl was drawing began to take shape and for a seven-year-old was pretty good. There was an Azzian courtyard, complete with the suns dial, a das'li or reflective pool, and the gazebo-like structure made of 8 trees intertwined, known as a ga'falin.

Just outside the ga'falin Abigail drew a picture of herself holding some flowers, a picture of a blonde woman and a dark-haired woman and her father. It seemed pretty happy, that is except for the large black circle she drew next to her father.

Kara looked over at the child's drawing, it was fairly normal for someone her age. Kara wished she knew more about the girl's race or culture but that wasn't as important. Some things were universal and translated the same for any race. "What is this," Kara asked? She already figured it was a space for the girl's lost mother. But, even if it was sad it was important that she learned to talk about it. "It is a very pretty drawing," she added.

"Abigail looked up at the woman and smiled, "it's a picture of me," she pointed at the smaller person in the picture, and I'm holding some pretty flowers." She then pointed at the blonde woman next to her, This is Mommy Fahli', she's funny and can play pretty music."

For a moment the girls paused and then pointed at the next woman, "this is Mommy Lei'halla, she's an important woman, an ambassador, but she won't talk to Daddy anymore."

Continuing on unabated Abigail added, "and this is Daddy." Then she paused again, "this is where Mommy Adi'ba would be but Daddy had her killed so she's no more."

Kara looked at the small child, "I am sure your Daddy didn't have her killed?" She questioned, with a warm smile as to not seem defensive. The sudden realization that her father was in the home bothered her. Would the girl be open, or hold back? "Why do you think that, sweetheart?"

"Because," Abigail said looking surprised that the woman would even ask, "Mommy Lei'halla said it was Daddie's fault. She said that Daddie must have waned her dead because he started asking about some type of research and that got her killed."

Kara looked puzzled, "will you excuse me for a minute," she stood up making her to the girls' father, as she led him to a more private location within the office. "I am afraid I am a little out of my element here. Being new, I am not entirely up to speed on what took place. But, can I get a more adult explanation," she tried to be delicate while the girl was occupied with her drawing. Your daughter just accused you of having her mother killed, I am certain she is confused. I hope."

"Yes," Richard said calmly, "I heard her, and she has told me that quite a few times." He took a deep breath, "I didn't have anything to do with her death Counselor, this has all hurt me so and hearing her say such a thing breaks my heart. I did report illegal research apparently being done by the Azzian board of health, experiments combining the DNA of Azzians with Romulans. Almost immediately after I did Adibah' was murdered in our home on Empok Nor and then Abigale was kidnapped on a class outing the same day at nearly the exact time. I understand that Lie'halla has told her it was my fault because I informed the Federation about the illegal activity and I also know that her captors told her repeatedly that I had Adibah' killed. With Lie'halla, it's a misunderstanding built on grief for losing her sister and I understand that. When she is ready to talk about things she will. I still love her and am bonded to her though she has nearly broken that bond as much as my heart. As for the kidnappers, they intentionally misled Abigail to further humiliate me and cause me such anguish."

For a moment the heartbroken father looked down and then back up at the counselor, "I have to restore my family, to help my daughter recover from what has been done to her and taken from her, that is why I voluntarily stepped down from the CMO position, for the good of all."

"I can respect the fact that you saw what was needed and were not afraid to take the right action," Kara commented, "so many people can't do that. I am sure you have seen this in the medical field as well. However, I think your daughter is not going to be recovered in just one sitting. This is something that will take time, and take even more patience. Grief is a horrible thing that causes so many problems," Kara smiled, "but it's not something that can't be worked through, in time."

"My suggestion, let's schedule some time for her to come see me," Kara got brave, "and sometimes where I can see her alone, some times children are more reserved when a parental figure is nearby. Perhaps once some trust is earned, and I can get her talking more she will open up even further."

Richard smiled and nodded, "that is true Counselor, I just came today because it was her first visit. I agree she needs private sessions, with her father tagging along."

Kara nodded, "I think for today we just let her get aquatinted and let her slightly control how this goes. If I push too hard without gaining her trust, we don't know how that will work out. Why she is coloring why don't you schedule some more appointments with the staff and we won't take up too much of your time today. Believe it or not, we made some good progress today, I will just sit back down with her and see where she takes this."

"There are definitely some things going on," Kara replied, "and I am glad you brought her here, she's in safe hands and I assure you we will get your daughter back to her normal self.. in time."

Richard took in a deep breath, "thank you, Counselor, I know you will."

Kara nodded it was nice to know that the father saw a need and was wishing to take the steps to fix things. So many people refused to admit that there was a problem to start with; so this was a big step. She turned away from the father as she walked back to the table, "well, isn't that pretty," she took note of the child's drawing. The young girl definitely had some things that needed to be worked on, but the Counselor was confident that in time the Commander's daughter would be just fine.

A joint post by;

Lieutenant Junior Grade Kara LI
Chief Counselor, USS Pioneer

Lieutenant Richard Ballston M.D. PsyD
Assistant Chief Medical Officer, USS Pioneer


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