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Among the Survivors

Posted on Thu Apr 16th, 2020 @ 2:24am by Lieutenant Richard Ballston M.D. PsyD & Lieutenant Commander Hermia O'Rourke MD & Helena Moreno & Lieutenant Junior Grade Zhara Rynn & Sophia
Edited on on Thu Apr 16th, 2020 @ 6:18am

Mission: Episode 9 - Empok's End
Location: Inside Camp McCoy
Timeline: MD004 1400 hrs

Richard breathed in deeply of the cool morning air of Camp McCoy. Space was cold, bitter cold, as the Azzian was reminded of. He pulled his regulation jacket a little closer around his neck trying to keep the chill out not only of the atmosphere of the class M planet before its sun had had the chance to warm the autumn air but also the coldness on aloneness he was feeling in his mind.

The planet was sparse of vegetation, sort of a brownish-grey color.

Engineers and Operations officers scurried about trying to get things set up and the new arrivals settled into their new accommodations.

Survivors from Empok Nor had been brought to the sight of the former colony where a marine base now occupied the planet. Although quite suited for their mission it wasn't set up for an influx of civilians and personnel.

People huddled together in groups trying to stay warm both physically and mentally and spoke in low tones to each other and one if the reasons Richard had thought to bring medical staff and counseling, including the loveable Sophi, along. He was well aware that the probability some would need some form of medical treatment had not been seen to, at least he hoped the paltry numbers that had made their way through his sickbay were not all of them. Surely, Richard thought, there were more who were not as injured or who had developed some sort of illness as a result of their flight from the assaulted space station. Then, there was his need to find Abigail his daughter and, if he Fahli’ would let him, reconcile with the woman he was bonded with.

Of those who had survived Fahli’ was among them though she had literally walled herself off mentally from him putting up an impenetrable telepathic shield to keep him out. She might know of his daughter’s whereabouts, but she wasn’t in any mood to reveal that information even if she did.

Temporary structures that had been set up to house the survivors. some of the old colony buildings could be used as well though more structures were being quickly assembled. These domes and tubular structures provided shelter and a bit of needed warmth for those lucky enough to have been placed within them as the temperatures dropped in the evening hours and slowly rose again heated by the glowing orange sun.

People scurried around following their orders or trying to find loved ones among those who had been brought to the camp all intent on their own business and certainly not too interested in the CMO and the crew that was with him.

Richard’s pale blue eyes looked over at Hermia and the others that had beamed into the structure, “alright let’s see who we can help and, if you find my daughter, please let me know.”

"Aye, sir." Hermia said. "Also could you all look out for my daughter Helena too."

Zhara nodded to the doctors and signaled to Sophia to heel. She looked around at the people needing help and wished there were more of them here to help them. She stopped by a small group of people. "Hello. My name is Zhara. This is Sophie." The dog began to go from person to person, greeting and being greeted in turn. She put a comforting arm around the first person. "Tell me what you did on the station."

"I had a shop," the woman said, leaning a little against Zhara.

"What sort of shop?" Zhara asked quietly.

"Bread and pastry. I'm a baker."

"Really? I love pastries. Croissants are my favorite, but I also enjoy muffins. Tell me, what is your favorite thing to bake?"

As the woman talked, Sophia went over to a young man and rubbed her face against his side. When he didn't respond, she licked his hand and sat down in front of him. Almost absently he began to pet the dog.

When the woman fell silent, Zhara hugged her. "When we get back to Empok Nor, I will come buy your pastries." She hugged the woman and moved on to a slim Bajoran next to her.

Hermia was worried about her mother and her daughter, but she had a job to do. She made her way through the survivors, treating those who were injured and directing the uninjured to the Ordinance Office, where they would be assigned sleeping quarters.

Richard began treating those he could find that needed it. There were many minor injuries sustained in their brush with death and would have become more severe if left untreated. He heard the voice of a child and glanced in that direction then realized it wasn't his daughter nor that of Hermia. Taking in a deep sigh he continued walking among the survivors, all glad to see someone taking an interest in their plight, at least for a moment. Many of them were civilian and it saddened him that so many had to receive the brunt of the actions of war that had nothing to do with it.

the Azzian heard a familiar tone, words spoken in his native language, one he had only known for a relatively short time. It wasn't Abigail but it was Afli’okti, the Azzian Ambassador that had come for the talks with the Cardassians.

"Ambassador," Richard said raising his voice slightly.

He walked towards her noticing the oddness of a jacket pulled over an Azzian gown. They did not seem to match too well wand it was obvious the woman wasn't used to the warming garment.

"Doctor Ballston," She replied offering him a smile, "it is good to see a familiar face, besides my staff I mean."

Richard nodded and went straight to his questions, "sorry things turned out this way, no one really expected this."

"I know," Afli’okti replied with a nod, "and I haven't seen Lei'halla or Abigail. I know you're looking for them."

Richard smiled, "thank you," he said letting his unspoken words send the message he was grateful for her information.

Sophia left the group of people talking with Zhara and found a young woman sitting off by herself. The dog nudged her and sat, waiting to be acknowledged.

For a long moment there was no response, but Sophia was patient. She cocked her head to one side and watched the woman who seemed to staring at nothing.

Slowly the woman's eyes turned to the dog. "What are you doing here?"

Sophia nudged her arm and gave her a canine smile.

"Is that an answer?" the woman asked. "You don't really understand me, do you?"

The dog put a paw on her arm and wined softly, her tail wagging.

The woman smiled and reached out a hand, then hesitated. "At least you act like you're listening. That's more than can be said for most around here." She reached out again and scratched the dog behind her ears.

Sophia moved closer and sat down, putting herself in easy reach so the woman could continue to scratch her head and ears.

Several minutes later, Zhara came quietly up to the woman. She'd been watching from a distance and decided now was the right time to approach. "Hi," she said, stopping a short distance away. "I'm Zhara. Mind if I join you?"

The woman's hand fisted in the dog's fur. "Is this your dog?" her tone was almost accusatory.

"Yes. She obviously wants to be your friend. So, do I, if you'll let me." Zhara moved a step closer. "We can talk, or I can just sit here with the two of you."

The woman hesitated, then nodded. "I'm Mita."

Zhara smiled softly. "Hello, Mita." She sat on the other side of Sophia, letting the dog get the attention.

"You're a doctor, aren't you?" the woman asked after several more minutes.

"Of a sort. I'm a psychologist."

"There's nothing wrong with me."

"I never said there was. I'm here to talk." She nodded to the others. "They're here to help."

Mita looked at the doctors, nodded, and went back to petting the dog. "What do you want to talk about?"

"Anything you do. I'm mostly here to listen, like Sophia." Zhara smiled at her dog.

Mita nodded. She said nothing for several more minutes. "Where are you from?"

Zhara smiled again and began to tell her of her homeworld.

Helena had been evacuated with the other children on the Station, she'd not seen her grandmother since leaving Empok Nor and now found herself in a strange place, within a madding crowd.

Richard looked up from his patient, a Bolian an abrasion to his left arm. It was nothing serious but the physician was sure it would get infected if not taken care of. After giving him an assuring smile and clipped his tricorder to his belt. He spotted a girl among the crowds, one he was sure he recognized.

Taking steps towards her he got closer to her until there was no one milling around between them, "Hellena, correct?"

Actually he was positive he was right but had learned a long time ago people didn't really like his perfect memory,

Sophia worked for several hours, sniffing out those she felt needed a little canine comfort, but the time came when she needed a nap. She found Zhara and nosed her hand.

"What do you need, Sophia?" Zhara asked. She'd finished talking to another small group and was on her way to see what else she could do to help.

Sophia led her to a warm spot and curled up on the ground. Zhara found a seat and pulled it up next to the dog. She'd been on her feet for hours and could use a brief break herself. She looked around as she sat. She'd talked to the groups of people not being treated by medical or other counselors, she could afford a short break.

Out of the corner of his eye he saw a young girl will long brown-haired girl. Here he smiled recognizing the girl, "Lieutenant O'Rourke, I think I see Helena, she's over by housing dome A27B."

"Thanks, Boss." Hermia said and made her way over to the housing dome.

Helena recognized her mother and came running to her. "Mum!" She called.

Hermia smiled. "Thank the four deities, you're safe." She said as they embraced.

"I'm glad you're safe too, Mum." Helena said.

"Is grandma with you, Helena?" Hermia asked.

"No, she left the shuttle to help out in the Infirmary." Helena replied.

"Ifreann na Fola (Bloody Hell)," Hermia said under her breath. "Your grandmother is very stubborn."

"I know, Mum, just like you." Helena said with a smirk.

"Cheeky." Hermia replied. "Now, Helena, I'm going to have to leave you with someone else, because I still have a job to do."

"I understand, Mum." Helena said.

"I'll see you soon, Mo Stór (My Dear)." Hermia said. Spotting a personnel officer, she called her over.

"What can I do for you, ma'am?" She asked.

"I'm Lieutenant O'Rourke, and this is my daughter, Helena. Could you take her to my temporary quarters and get her squared away?" Hermia asked.

"Of course, ma'am." She said. "Come on, Helena lets get you squared away. Then we can have some ice cream."

"Lead the way Corporal?" Helena said.

"Harland, T.J. Harland." The Corporal replied.

"What does 'T.J.' stand for?" Helena asked as they made there way to the housing domes.

"Promise, you won't tell anyone?" T.J. asked.

"I promise." Helena said.

"Temperance Joan." T.J. replied.

"Now I see why you go by 'T.J." Helena joked.

They both laughed.

A Joint Post By
Lieutenant Hermia O'Rourke
Assistant Chief Medical Officer, USS Pioneer

Helena Moreno
Child, Empok Nor

Lieutenant JG Zhara Rynn
Counselor, USS Pioneer

Therapy Dog, USS Pioneer

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

Abigail Ballston
Child, Empok Nor


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