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The Fight For Sickbay

Posted on 12 Nov 2019 @ 12:20pm by Captain Harvey Geisler & Lieutenant JG Kemm & Commander Thiago Teixeira & Lieutenant Commander Terry Walsh & Lieutenant Commander Jayla Kij & Lieutenant Joey Geisler & Lieutenant Camila Di Pasquale & Senior Chief Petty Officer Alexander Rylan

Mission: Truth and Justice
Location: Deck Six
Timeline: MD15 || 1805 hours

===[Turbolift Going Up to Six]===

After the Boreriri had updated Camila and the Intel Chief about Geisler ramming the ship and the orders to kill him, the ombre haired Security Chief changed the setting on her phaser to sixteen and ordered the computer to deck six. "He rammed his own ship, Geisler," she said to Joey as the turbolift changed direction. "What kind of fool does that?"

The Intelligence Chief pulled her power cell from her phaser. It was almost out. Instead of putting it back in, she grabbed a fresh one from the belt she wore and popped it in, then checked the settings. "A fool that wants his ship back, and will do anything to see to it that it happens. The sneaky bastard," Joey muttered, willing the turbolift to go faster.

The turbolift came to a halt and Camila changed out her own power cell. "I'll sneak him," she muttered. "But he's still a fool. He turned down a lot of this host's security protocols that would have stopped us."

Before the doors opened, Joey found herself looking toward Camila. "Geisler and the others could be anywhere, and without communications, we can't get an exact location on him. That means... we improvise," she said, reaching onto the tactical belt that was ready to pop off of her expanded waistline. When she brought her hand back up, Joey held an exo-graphic targeting sensor in it, and brought it up to her head to get it in place just before powering the device on. "This, and tricorders," The parasite was depending on a lot of its host memories to get it through everything. "should be enough to help us pinpoint his location."

Camila pulled her own targeting sensor out and put it over her right eye, then looked around and through the walls around her. "Interesting device," she said as she pulled her tricorder out and activated it. She made a few entries, then showed Joey the screen. "Geisler's DNA scan was in here. The Chief had his and several other key officers scanned for an event like this." The woman laughed and it wasn't nice. "We'll be able to find him much easier."

===[Deck Six]===

"Then, let's get to it. We can't allow him to retake control of the ship. We haven't come this far for nothing," Joey said, scanning the corridor. When it came up empty around them, she stepped out and began searching for lifesigns. "I want to be the one to kill him. I want this face to be the last thing he sees... to know this body was used for a greater purpose... before he ceases breathing."

"We need the command codes from him," the Security Chief pointed out. She started to stay more when her tricorder beeped and she looked at it. "I'm getting three alien lifesigns on the other side of the deck.. two Aketi, a Boreriri and one Harvey Fucking Elmer Geisler. I hope your bloated stinking host can keep up," she told the Intel Chief as she started down the corridor.

Dolmoqour Joey smirked, weeding through the real Intel Chief's memories. "Don't concern yourself with my host. You worry about the shape you're going to be in once you're able to leave your abused and tormented host," she said, glancing over at the tricorder Camila held in her hand. She pointed to an area up ahead. "If we're quick, we can take this junction here and come up behind them all on the other side of the deck."

"Once I leave this stinking bag of meat, maybe I can find something better than one of those stinking Scruna," Camilaqour growled. "Maybe inhabit a nice Klingon. This host thinks highly of their martial skills." She turned down the indicated junction and watched the distance close on her tricorder.

Joey turned her gaze toward Camila and sneered as they continued their way down the corridor. What did it matter how the host felt about its martial arts skills? It was irrelevant when there were more important things to do. "Focus. We're close to Geisler and the others. We can't let them retake the ship," she snapped as they came to the junction that would put them behind the small group.

"I have an idea," the Security Chief said as she nodded towards the Intel Chief's stomach. "Put your phaser behind your back like I'm twisting your arm and I'll pretend to use you as a hostage. Maybe he won't think you're Dolmoqour and my prisoner and we can get him by surprise. He wouldn't dare fire on his pregnant, innocent wife." It also wouldn't hurt her host any to use the other woman as a shield.

"If that's going to work, we're going to have to make it more believable, and by that, I mean you're going to have to beat the hell out of me," Joey told her as she holstered her phaser and returned the tricorder she held back to the beld, then put her hands to the side. "Perhaps, busting up this face a bit might help, but don't render the body unconscious. We won't be able to use her." Inside, the real Joey screamed, fighting against the Dolmoqour inside of her, but to no avail.

Camila holstered her phaser for the moment and backhanded Joey with the tricorder on her left cheek and across her nose, leaving a nice bloody gash and awkwardly broken nose. "Hmm," she cocked her head, then swung her other fist into the brunette's mouth. "There we go."

Joey staggered a few feet, bracing herself against the hull. The Dolmoqour inside of her didn't feel any pain that its host did, but the body obviously needed a moment to gather its bearings. "Take my belt," she said, but tuck the phaser in the waistband of the pants. I don't want to be entirely defenseless when we get there." The real Joey was reeling, pain registering on every level. Tears rolled down her cheeks as she continued to fight against the hold the thing had on her.

The Security Chief took the belt and looped it over her left shoulder then wiped a smear of blood on the tricorder across her face. The real Camila shivered in disgust and revulsion at the act while her body moved behind the other woman. "Now put your hand back and march," she said with the hand holding her phaser forward and the rest of her body behind Joey's.

After taking another moment, Dolmoqour Joey pushed herself upright and put her arm behind her back as Camila had instructed. This would work. Without another moment of hesitation, she began to move forward with Camila behind her holding her arm as they'd discussed. She looked the part of a hostage, now she had to play the part of one. This would be the role of a lifetime, and it was one she hoped to never be in again.

As they neared the junction, Camila hissed. "I hear and smell them. Get ready." She checked the setting on her phaser, then adjusted to wide beam at setting eight to account for the extra three aliens.

It was show time. Joey was only mere inches away from stepping out into the corridor on the other side of the ship. She brought her free hand up to her face and smeared blood on it in an effort to bring more tears forth from the host. The action seemed to work as fresh tears began to roll down her cheeks.

She stepped out of the junction and sobbed when she saw the group of people, but her eyes searched for only one person, falling on the father of the parasites that lived inside the body. "Har...vey," she cried, her voice sounding rather nasally thanks to the broken nose. "She... she's gone crazy! You have to help me, please!"

"Sir," Alex said. "I saw her on the bridge earlier. I'm fairly certain your wife isn't at the helm of her body right now. You go to her thinking she is, and this is all over. We're all lost. We'll get her back. We just have to be smart about it. And careful. That zapper of yours might send her into labor, but if that's how we have to do it, just keep Camilla off of me and I'll take care of your wife. I promise."

Harvey looked at his bloodied and bruised wife. He hadn’t seen her since leaving the bridge to meet with the Scruna, home he assumed were still running amok around his ship. All while trying to hastily escape the Black Hawk, and then return to it, he had wondered how she was faring even though he knew Joey could handle her own. He had boarded the ship with the plan to “trust no one” but now he was face to face with nearly his worst fear. His disc shooter was raised at hip level, but Harvey could not bring himself to confront and fire on his wife. He feared for her and the children she carried.

Petty Officer Gomez faced a conflict of her own. For the last two months she had been an unwilling puppet for these Dolmoqour, forced to watch her body move without her permission, and words to be uttered from her mouth without clearance. She wanted revenge, and her opportunity was now. She disregarded the weapon she’d been given, and instead lifted her phaser. Gomez stepped out from behind the group, quickly leveled her phaser in Camila’s direction, and fired, realizing only a heartbeat later that her shot was a clean miss. Her second one, if she had the chance, would not.

"You dare?!" Camila screamed when the Petty Officer fired at her and swung her phaser around to return fire while still staying mainly behind Joey. She watched Gomez go down with a smirk before she turned her attention back to Harvey. "Lay down your weapons or the next shot will be in the Captain's wife!" She demanded as she brought the phaser back towards Joey.

Joey's eyes went wide when Gomez fired the phaser, terror written on her face, but now Camila had her phaser pointed at her. She needed to make this look good, and knew from her hosts memories that she wasn't an easy hostage to have. Without hesitation, the Intelligence Chief brought her arm forward, then whipped her elbow toward Camila's midsection. It would be enough to stun her 'kidnapper' and get her over to the other side. If she could infiltrate them, it would make their job easier.

Out of the corner of his eye, Kemm was horrified when he saw Petty Officer Gomez disintegrate into a nasty burn on the corridor's carpet. He snapped to action the moment the Captain shouted for everyone to take cover. One of the Aketi followed him into a Jeffries tube gangway while the other Guardians dove for cover elsewhere as well. The Captain was the last one to take action, choosing to reach for Joey and pull her away.

Kemm, however, didn't wait for the Captain to get clear. He popped out from the gangway and fired his LRAD at both women and the Captain, filling the corridor with a concussive sound.

Camila got knocked backwards when Joey's elbow hit her stomach, but she didn't let go of the phaser. Until she got hit with the wall of screaming sound forced her to clap her hands over her ears and screamed her anger.

Joey cried out as she dropped to her knees, her hands going to the sides of her head to block her ears with her palms. She squeezed her eyes shut and reached in the waistband of her pants at the small of her back to produce her phaser. The Intel Chief pointed it in Kemm's direction and the offensive noise, then fired.

Terry looked on as the events unfolded. He was happy that people were being set free.

The shot narrowly missed Kemm, but it did burn through the corridor panel behind him and the Aketi. Thankfully, it also missed the EPS tap under that shield. Had that ignited, none of them would be standing there. The Aketi, frustrated by Starfleet's lack of action thus far, stepped out from behind Kemm and fired one of his discs onto Camila, landing on her left shoulder.

Between the ringing in her ears and the pain shooting through her from whatever the Captain had fired at her, the Chief of Security could only scream and flop around on the floor like a fish out of water. Fortunately, her hand threw the phaser it had been holding and she reached out to grab anyone near her. "Help. Me!"

Having dropped to her knees the moment Harvey had reached for her, Harvey's hand caught nothing but air. His struggles had evaporated the moment she fired at Kemm, and Harvey's senses returned to him at full strength. "I'm sorry," he whispered though none could hear, as he raised his disc shooter and planted a disc on her forehead, hoping to keep the charge localized to where the parasite was, and nowhere near his children.

Of everything she could have expected, taking a disc between the eyes was not one of them. Or the electrical shock it sent through her body the moment it connected. Joey fell to the ground the rest of the way, her entire body tense as pain caused by the disc on her forehead surged through her. Through it all, she didn't even realize that the parasite that once controlled her body had vacated and was now on the floor next to her.

It wasn't over for Lieutenant Joelle Geisler, though. She cried out, pulling at the disc on her forehead in an effort to make it stop when the new pain started. This pain was unlike any other she'd felt before, even what the books called Braxton Hicks contractions. Her ears were ringing, her face was bruised and beaten, she'd suffered electric shock, but none of that compared. She turned her gaze toward Harvey once the disc was gone, but her body didn't seem to be relaxing. She was still quite tense, and was panting through the pain that was coming from her abdomen.

The moment Joey's parasite had cleared her body, Harvey switched to his hand phaser, increased the setting to six, and fired upon the parasite, which died instantly. He then holstered his phaser, knelt down beside Joey, grabbed one of her hands with his, and placed his other hand behind her neck. "Joey?" he asked, looking down on her with his good eye. "You're free now, Joey." He looked up for Rylan, hoping he was free enough to come perform a quick medical scan.

As her contraction began to subside, Joey's body finally started to relax a bit. There was no doubt in her mind she was in labor based on how different it felt. She could see Harvey's lips moving, but couldn't really hear what he was saying over the ringing in her ears. And, despite seeing him before, she was now seeing him as herself. His condition was a shock to her still recovering system. She wanted to cry and physically beat the hell out of everyone she knew to be Dolmoqour, herself included. There was time for that. Not if there was a chance she could help free the others on the ship as Harvey and his merry band had freed her, and she assumed Camila. "Harvey... I think I'm in labor," she said, perhaps a little louder than she'd intended due to the temporary damage to her ears.

Alex popped open a medical tricorder. "I think I can get the labor under control," he said after a moment, speaking loudly so she could hear him. He loaded up a hypospray and pressed it against Joey's neck, then scanned her again. After a moment, he nodded. "The contractions should be subsiding, but if you start running around, you risk starting them again, and you might go into actual labor as opposed to just Braxton-Hicks. The smart thing for you to do would be for me to escort you to the Goat Locker and you and I hole up in there until the ship is secure. But your kids, your call. I need to take a look at Lieutenant Di Pasquale. I'll let you two work this out for yourselves."

Joey pushed herself to a seated position. She didn't care what anyone had to say. The ship had been boarded, and it was as much her responsibility to get it back as it was anyone else's. Thankfully, the ringing began to subside, and she found she could hear a bit better. "I've had Braxton Hicks contractions for the last couple of weeks, and that wasn't one," she said, rolling until she was on all fours so she could get to her feet. "Regardless, I'm doing what I can to help get the ship back. I'm part of the reason the Dolmoqour have it."

Camila looked up at the Captain and then over to where Joey was making some kind of noise but she couldn't hear much. She looks around at the others and wondered what they were all doing there, then the memories came flooding back with the death of the Dolmoqour and all the horrible acts she had done while under its control. Tears began to roll down her cheeks and she longed for a bottle to drown her inner pain in.

Alex walked over to Camilla and knelt down beside her. He smiled at her and made sure she was looking at him as he pulled out a tricorder. "Let's get you checked out, ma'am." Alex ran his scans and closed the tricorder. "I think you're going to be fine, Lieutenant. Your hearing should return to normal shortly." Alex placed a hand on Camilla's shoulder and gave it a reassuring squeeze. There were all manner of supportive things he wanted to say, but he knew Camilla wouldn't want him to shout them, so he let the words go unspoken for the time being, hoping she could pick up on his meaning. Later, when things settled down and he'd made sure that Jayla was alright, he'd find time to look in on Camilla. The woman was unlikely to talk to a counselor, but he wasn't a counselor. He was just a wiseass Senior Chief who, like her, had seen and in some cases done some awful things, and who just happened to have enough mental health training to be a fairly good listener. That was about the only treatment for the injury the Dolmoqour had done to Camilla and the rest of the people they had possessed.

Alex kept up a facade of professional calm, because that's what he was trained to do in these situations. He was deathly worried for Jayla... or was he? Yes, he wanted to keep her from harm, but she was one tough cookie. She had been 20 years ago, and that hadn't changed. The thought of losing her was too painful to bear, but... smiled ever so slightly. He figured he should probably be more worried about the possessed crew trying to attack Sickbay. Jayla would eat them alive.

All Camila could hear was the ringing in her ears, but she saw the expression on Rylan's face and just gave a nod before she pried the disc off of her shoulder and tossed it aside. In her mind's eye, she saw the people she had shot, the most recent being Gomez and more tears flowed. She silently got to her feet and got her phaser, then looked at the Captain for orders and hoped she could hear them.

Harvey assessed his crew. He could easily see Joey’s pain in both her visible injuries and the internal contractions. He could also see the remorse in Camila’s eyes, recognizing it as the same as what Terry bore the moment he was free. Kemm, thankfully, was calm, and Rylan kept it professional. Gomez was gone, but her security companion was visibly shaken. In a few minutes, there would be more like all of them. Healing would take time.

And tine was something they had very little of right now.

“The first thing you have to accept,” Harvey told both of the newly freed senior officers, “is that none of this is your fault. The Dolmoqour used you and everything about you. You want revenge and redemption. More than a hundred of this crew is infected. You might know some, but we’ve got less than an hour to sort through over seven hundred people. We head for sickbay, secure it and then we branch out from there. And we have to move fast. If we can do this soon, the Guardians will destroy this ship with all of us in it.”

Harvey then nodded again to Kemm. "Pass out more of those earbuds and disc shooters." Harvey also removed his LRAD and handed it to Camila. As he did, he tried to lock eyes with her, hoping she would see that his expression would only echo his assurance that he knew that she was not responsible for today's ills.

Camila took it and met his eyes for a split second, her eyes were filled with nothing but remorse and horror. She looked over at the spot where Gomez had been before it seemed as if the person had went into their own mind and closed the door, leaving only the Starfleet officer behind. She set the LRAD down and tapped out something on her tricorder and showed it to him. "Where do we go from here?" she had written and pointed at her ear.

Joey hadn't been as close to the LRAD as Camila had been, but she was still having trouble hearing. Perhaps, it was because of how close she was to Harvey that she could make out what he was saying. She looked to Camila, seeing how troubled the Security Chief was. She felt incredibly guilty for what she'd said to the Italian woman on the bridge and planned to talk to her about that soon enough, but right now, there were other things that needed all of their attention.

The Intel Chief took a pair of earbuds and a disc shooter and studied it. She'd never fired one before, so this was her crash course. "I should go back to the bridge. I'm part of the reason the Dolmoqour have it. I should be one of the people to help take it from them. I can take a few of them," she began, gesturing to the Guardians. "with me."

Harvey shook his head to Joey's suggestion as he returned to his feet. "No. So far, there are only eight confirmed people on this ship free of the Dolmoqour. We stay together." Looking to Camila, Harvey pointed at Rylan, then reached up to press his thumb on his own neck as if he were applying a hypospray, and then pointed down the corridor, hoping that she'd infer that sickbay was their destination.

To Joey, Harvey added, "I'm not letting you out of my sight. Not now. We'll get to the bridge, but we do it together."

Camila nodded, then checked out the disc gun before she slung it at her right hip and entered a new message on her tricorder. "No Security clearance, Captain."

Truth be told, Joey didn't want Harvey out of her sight, either. Based on his present condition, he needed someone to look out for her. And, had it not been for that bastard parasite, she might have been able to do that. But, instead, she was forced into wanting to kill him, and she just might have if he didn't have a way to free them. "We stay together," she agreed, looking toward Camila's tricorder, then back to Harvey. "Teixeira locked her out... took away all of her access. No one, as far as I know, has seen or heard from him while any of this has been going on."

Alex took the offered disc shooter and quickly familiarized himself with it's function. "Ready when you are, Captain," he said. "I'll stick close to Lieutenant Geisler, just in case, if that works for the both of you." Alex could have pulled medical rank and insisted. Hell, he could have threatened to file an official complaint if Joey didn't lie down as he suggested. But that would just cause more stress, aggravate an already tense situation, and most importantly, delay him in getting to Sickbay. While he knew Jayla could take care of herself, that didn't mean he wasn't going to try and help her if he could.

"Works for me," Harvey stated. "Mister Kemm, lead the way to sickbay." Harvey then gestured to Camila behind them to jump ahead and join Kemm at the front. "No matter what, if it moves, hit it with a disc. We can't take anything or anyone for granted today."

Joey nodded her head in response to Alex wanting to stick close to her, but she planned to stick close to Harvey, also. He's already been through hell and back, and she really wasn't going to let him out of her sight. "If my contractions start up again, I'll let you both know," she said, waiting for Camila to take point with Kemm.

Once Kemm and Camila took point, Joey readied her disc shooter and followed. Thankfully, the Security Chief was still in possestion of her exographic targeting sensor, unlike her own, which was now broken on the other side of the deck from the blow she'd taken from the tricorder. Seeing two fingers, she paused. There were at least two combatants on inside, but the Captain said shoot anything that moved, which meant everyone inside was a target for her no matter what.


===[Sickbay]===

Meanwhile, inside Sick Bay, the remaining nurses and doctors and medical corpsmen- about two thirds of those who had started out their day inside- were holding their own against the remaining two security officers. “We May have to rush them,” Jayla commented to Nurse Lane.

“In your state? Ha!” laughed Penny humorlessly. “You’d never make it.”

“Then you’ll have to promise to make sure Kij gets into a stasis pod before he dies,” replied Jayla.

Penny blanched. “Don’t even joke about that!” she said. “We’re not rushing them! Wait for them to rush us and then we can pick them off!”


===[Outside Sickbay]===

Camila moved up beside of Kemm as the ringing in her ears slowly subsided, but everything still sounded distant to her. She activated her exographic targeting sensor and linked it to her tricorder, then raised the disc gun and advanced at a fairly steady pace. Seeing through walls or without needing to cautiously creep around corners had its benefits and it wasn't long before she raised her free hand and held up two fingers, then pointed left as the sound of the firefight reached them.

Joey strained to hear what was going on inside of sickbay. Sadly, she couldn't read their lips like she would with the others, but she didn't know something was going down on the inside. As dangerous as the situation already was for her, Camila and Kemm were going to have to be the ones to go in first so the rest of them could follow. It seemed when things were bad, they somehow always managed to get worse. Now was the time to fix that.

Alex checked his kit and got ready in case Camilla and the others got injured. He controlled his worry over Jayla but smiled at the sight of attacking force reduced to two people.

Terry had slipped back and taken up near the rear of the group in order to keep an eye on their 'six' since Kemm and the Security Chief had taken point. Hopefully they could retake Sickbay without much of a fight. And hopefully, pick up anyone else with combat or security experience. When the group stopped and Camila held up her two fingers, he knew that his hope had been confirmed. But then again, everyone was suspect no matter what.


===[Sickbay]===

Abbey poked her head up from her hiding place in order to draw out the security officers, but instead, caught movement outside of Sick Bay. Either Sick Bay as in bigger trouble now or they were saved. Whichever it was would be revealed in time. She ducked back down quickly and glanced over at Jayla. "Reinforcements," she reported. "But, I don't know whose."

The whole experience was rattling Landon to his core. As if the whole experience aboard the Beifong with the Consortium plot was not bad enough, this experience was going to land him more time in a Counselor's office. The Landon of old would have been holding a phaser with a trembling arm trying and failing to steady a shaking hand; however, after all that he had been through he was far more comfortable in these combat situations. The problem was friend or foe was indeterminable. The enemy wore the faes of his friends and his friends could very easily be the enemy.

They roamed the ship in the guise of people he cared about; they killed in the form of those he loved. It was a perversion of their true personalities, and now Landon was forced to do something he was not fond of doing. He would have to take up arms and fire phasers. He would have to fight for survival. He would shoot whoever or whatever encroached upon Sickbay. He was not ready to take lives, be they were and others were. He could not hesitate to fire. Do no harm does no damn good right now he reminded himself in that moment.

Outside, the tall and lanky Kelpian stood erect to the doorframe that served as the entrance to sickbay. He looked over to the security chief whom he could tell was focused on what was inside. Kemm was an engineer, not a security guard. He would have to let Camila do most of the work here lest he himself be stunned. He handed Camila his disk shooter and raised his LRAD. With two groups fighting in sickbay, and their needing to clear every individual in the complex, Kemm knew that a quick blast would be enough to stun everyone long enough for Di Pasquale to do her job.

He nodded to Camila and held up fingers to match his words. "One... two... three." Kemm swung inside, and with his LRAD set for a wide dispersal, he fired on the third-highest setting. A loud sound reverberated through reception, enough to knock everyone back.

The noise was loud to be sure, but as the Medical staff had those wonderful smart ear plugs to protect against invaders, they only crouched in their hiding places looking baffled. That is, until Lane noticed the two security officers in reception had abandoned their phasers and were covering their ears. She took careful aim and fired at one of them.

Earplugs or not, the sound was enough to make Landon nauseous enough that he could lose his biscuits at any moment. Maybe because he was extra sensitive to things? He was not entirely hopeless though. He did notice Lane charging towards the two security officers who had dopped their weapons. She had taken care of one of them. The other was still a vulnerable target.

He staggered a bit as he proceeded to the reception area himself. The security officer had his back towards Landon and was covering his ears.Landon grabbed the man by the shoulder, spun him around and was unapologetic as he brought up his knee upruptly striking the man directly in the groin. It was certainly not pleasant and it may have not been standard hand-to-hand training, but doubted anyone was going to deduct him points for it.

Two security officers were down. "Never underestimate a very agitated medical officer" he muttered as he turned to look at Lane. He grabbed onto her wrist and started to try and lower it. "The last thing you want to be is armed when whoever it is on the other side of those doors comes storming in!" he shouted.

Camila came around the corner with her targets already selected. No one got away unshocked. That was the mission that had been assigned to her. She raised the disc gun at hip level and began firing after the screech of the LRAD stunned the other Security personnel - or phaser fire did - she wasn't sure which. Her first disc went to Doctor Landon Milo as she advanced and fired at a nurse who had popped her head out a moment later.

Landon's body was relatively small and he did not have much in the way of fat or muscle mass. Needless to say that once the disc hit his, Landon's body was thoroughly jolted by the experience. A quick and sudden shaking soon dropped him to the deck where his body continued to convulse until it stopped and he momentarily lost consciousness.

Jayla let out a Trill curse. It was Camila, who had one of those parasites in her head. But, she knew Camila was better than the security officers who had invaded Sick Bay. So, before anybody could react, she called out, “I beat it, you know. That slimy worm who thought it could control me. I beat it and I told everyone else how to beat it, too. You can’t win, now.”

"Talk, talk talk," Camila called to Jayla before she aimed and fired a disc right at the Chief Medical Officer's torso. "Unless you were talking about your symbiont. Which isn't nice." She tracked to the right and fired another disc at another Medical officer who jumped up behind a biobed like he was making a last stand. Until it hit his arm and sent him back down to where he had been hiding, only this time being filled with an electrical shock.

With a grunt, Jayla dropped her phaser and fell to her knees. The shock wore off quickly, though, and she was left sitting there as she watched Camila continue around Sick Bay, shooting everyone with the weird little disks. “What exactly was that supposed to do?” she asked nobody in particular as she plucked the disk from her stomach.

"Prove to me you're Dolmoqour free," Harvey answered, entering sickbay with the rest of the entourage not far behind, including two of the fully suited Aketi. He looked down with his one good eye to see the two security officers continue to writhe in pain as their parasites exited their ears. "Someone make sure those things are dead."

“I’m on it!” called Lane, who had already recovered from the shot. She pranced happily towards the two security officers while adjusting her phaser to kill, but waited until the things were completely clear of the security officers before shooting them.

“Harvey!” cried Jayla when she saw the Captain’s totally messed up face. “What the hell did they do to you?” She attempted to get off the floor, but failed miserably. It seemed between fighting off the Dolmoquor, the siege in Sick Bay, and the shock disc thing, she was no longer able to function properly.

Camila stepped past Jayla and fired several more discs at Medical personnel that seemed to be partly confused and partly in shock. In the last case, the shock was very real. She didn't see any parasites comes out of them, so she continued checking person by person after shooting them.

Alex ground his teeth. He hated this part. At least with the Raiders, there was no place on the team for someone who wasn't in the thick of things, so he was always in on the action, doing everything the team did. Waiting was not in his nature. So he distracted himself by running a scan of Joey. "Well, Lieutenant, you're still doing well. Any more contractions? Lightheadedness? Dizziness? Abdominal pain? Overwhelming desire to strangle your friendly neighborhood Independent Duty Corpsman?"

"I'm fine," Joey lied, but in reality, she was feeling incredibly antsy. "Go check on Doctor Kij. You don't need to babysit me."

"Oh, sure," Alex said. "And when you run off and do something decidedly ill advised, like trying to subdue all of the remaining possessed officers and crew armed only with a toenail clipper and a handful of lima beans or something like that, and complicate your pregnancy, I'll have to face both your husband AND my girlfriend and they'll both want my head. Do I want to go see if she's okay? Absolutely. But if you don't come with me, I can't do that." Alex sighed. "Lieutenant, I really want to see for myself that she's okay, but I'm not going to desert my post to do it. So come into Sickbay with me for a moment. I'll check on Jayla, grab a toenail clipper, replicate some lima beans, and we can go retake the ship together."

She couldn't help but laugh at that, the two of them traipsing through the ship with a toenail clipper, lima beans and whatever else they might be able to come across. That would be a sight, but she just didn't have it in her to go anywhere just yet. "I get it,," Joey told him, casting a glance toward the back of Harvey's head. After everything that happened, she had zero intentions of letting him out of her sight. They would be one person for the foreseeable future. "I don't plan on going anywhere he isn't, but I can understand your need to see that she's okay for yourself. So, let's go."

"Thank you, Lieutenant," Alex said. He led Joey into Sickbay. The two of them went over to Jayla and Alex knelt by her side. He brushed the hair out of her face and gently kissed her on the forehead, protocol be damned. "Hello, beautiful. You did really good. Just let me look you over. " Alex held Jayla's hand while he scanned her with his medical tricorder. "Nothing seems to be wrong with you that a week of rest won't cure."

Jayla gave a weak laugh. "Sure," she said. "Just tell the Dolmoquor to lay off for a week and then we can resume the battle." She glanced around. "Where's Abrams?" she asked.

"Damn," Alex said. "I was so worried about you and Lieutenant Geisler that I almost forgot about Doctor Abrams. I, um, had to hide all but one of his arms in a Jeffries tube after he passed out. Don't look at me like that! I didn't cut off his arm to fit him in the tube! Lieutenant Mitchell shot it off! Anyway, the mission came first and the mission was getting Lieutenant Mitchell back here. Abrams was passed out, Lieutenant Mitchell was unconscious, and I couldn't carry both of them. Then the fighting started, and I had to hide Mitchell in a different Jeffries tube. Abrams is dosed on painkillers and sedatives now. He'll be out for a bit longer. Now that I know you're okay, I'm going to go back for both of them." Of course, that meant Alex had to figure out what to do with Joey. "Lieutenant, I might just have to let you take on the rest of the ship by yourself. Unless you want to watch my back while I rescue Doctor Abrams and free Lieutenant Mitchell?"

The big guy lost an arm, and Shay was the one that did it? That information was a bit of a shock, but no more so than the things she'd already witnessed. Joey shook her head. "You need to do what you need to do, and that's okay," she said to Alex. "I have to do what I need to do, also, and I can assure you I won't be by myself while I do it. Thank you for everything you've done so far, Chief. If you'll both excuse me." She left Jayla and Alex alone and made her way closer to Harvey for further instructions.

“I want to go with you to get Abrams,” Jayla insisted, again attempting and failing to get her feet under her. “I just need... a minute...”

"Uh... no," Alex said. "I can't carry you and Abrams and you'll slow me down even if you manage to stay on your feet."

“I can keep up, I just...” she started, but the memory of trying to pull the manual door release came unbidden to her mind. “All right,” she sighed unhappily. “Help me up, though so I can at least find out the game plan.”

Alex helped Jayla to her feet and escorted her over to where the other officers were gathering to make their plans. She leaned heavily on him at first, but gradually began to support herself more easily as they walked.

===[Pathology Lab]===

Rhula had been studying the parasite that had come out of the the Trill Chief Medical Officer. Well, the parasite that hadn't been invited in...unlike the so-called symbiont. He had a file full of scans and his own notes. If he survived this, he might have something worth publishing.

Although he'd been left alone, there was increasing commotion going on beyond the doors of his lab, in Sickbay. The sound of an access panel hitting the ground caused him to spin around, phaser in hand.

"Don't shoot!"

The Bajoran scientist glared at the man emerging from the opening. "Given current events, I'm inclined to shoot first."

"I understand, but I'm not infected," the darker-skinned man said.

"It's not an infection, per se," Rhula explained. "It is a parasite, and an advanced one at that."

"They've been taking control of everyone," the Human said.

Rhula nodded. "That is true. At least from what I've been able to ascertain from here. This one," he said, motioning towards the lifeform in the stasis pod on his table, "was in Doctor Kij."

"Still planning on using that," the Human asked, motioning towards Jennin's phaser.

"I suppose not," the Bajoran man replied, lowering it.

"I'll take it then."

Rhula handed the weapon over. "Use it well, Commander."

"That's the plan," Thiago said. "Keep up your research." The Executive Officer headed for the door to Sickbay. He stopped just before activating it and turned around. "Thanks for not shooting me."

"Thanks for not having one of these in you," Jennin responded. "Or being Trill."


===[Sickbay]===

Thiago passed through the door from the Pathology Lab into the main ward of Sickbay, phaser in hand. He didn't know if it would do much good, but it was, hopefully, better than nothing.

Joey caught movement out the corner of her eye, and turned her attention toward it. It was their elusive Executive Officer, and the Captain did say to shoot anything that moved. She raised the disc shooter she carried and took aim in his direction, then fired a single shot at his torso. A slightly sadistic side of her was pleased he'd suffer, albeit momentarily, for locking her husband in a room with the Dolmoqour.

"What the hell?" Thiago said as he felt a jolt from where Mrs. Geisler had shot him.

"Apologies, Commander, but everyone gets hit with one of these," Joey stated. "Captain's orders."

Teixeira grumbled quietly before it hit him. Captain's orders. He looked around and, peering around a corner, saw Harvey.

"Captain," he said.

Harvey heard the familiar voice and spotted his Executive Officer with his one good eye. He was pleased to see that Thiago had managed to escape the Scruna, but he did wonder what the man had been up to for the last few hours. "Commander," he returned the greeting, gesturing for the man to come join him in the center of the room.

Taking his place beside Harvey, Thiago leaned in and offered a whispered apology. "Sorry, sir."

"We all have something to be sorry for today," Harvey replied, holding a few regrets of his own. "We'll discuss them later."

"Nice shot," Camila said when she saw the elusive Executive Officer get shot. She stepped past him after making sure no Dolmoqour was crawling out of his ears, then entered the Pathology lab where she saw the Bajoran. She raised her disc gun and fired at him as she swept the lab with her eyes to make sure there were no other targets.

"The only one of them is in this stasis unit," Rhula stated, his eyes still fixed on the readout on his console. "Thankfully." He looked over his shoulder at the Security Chief. "I'm glad you're back to normal. I like you best when we're on the same side."

Camila looked at her disc gun and figured it must have been faulty since the Bajoran didn't react, so she fired again. "Resistance. I'll have to note that to the Captain."

"You got me the first time," he informed her. "Don't make me change my mind about you."


===[Sickbay]===

Harvey stood in the middle of sickbay. Over the last twenty years, he'd seen many things, but only a select few he wished he could unsee. This moment had just made that short list. It had sickened him enough just to give the order to shock each member of his crew to force those parasites out of the body, but it was nothing compared to actually doing it, especially when he'd fired upon his own wife. He, like much of his crew, would certainly need some counseling when this was all over. He looked at his First Officer, whom he hoped had some good news, and then around at the medical staff, and then to his Security Chief who seemed to be focused on her task.

"I'm sorry, everyone, but we will have to save the reunion stories for later," he began, using his free hand to start waving what crew was left towards him. Mister Kemm, meanwhile, went straight for the replicator with an isolinear chip, for he too had work to do. "For now, we must stick with business. We all know the Dolmoqour are on board and it sounds like you all were figuring some of that out too. According to the late Petty Officer Gomez, there's somewhere around one hundred and twenty aboard this ship. We've only found ten so far, including the security folks you took down. Can anyone on the medical staff tell me how many crew..." Harvey tried to avoid looking at the mess of bodies on the floor, "... we still have with us in this room."

"About twenty, give or take," answered Abbey, who had been busily counting the dead and doing mental math. "Plus whoever is still in the labs. Um... twenty-five, maybe? Give or take."

Harvey grimaced. By his own math, that meant at least there were ten dead in sickbay at the moment. And, those that weren't, well, at least they didn't look as bad as the Captain currently did. "I wish I could guarantee that the worst of it is over. I'm going to level with you all right now. There's still over a hundred Dolmoqour among seven hundred crew. Those shocks you all had? We have to do that to all of them, and we've got two hours to do it all in. If we can't get them all, well, the Guardians will finish the job for us."

Joey didn't like the way that sounded. Then again, she was sure no one present did. "Based on what you've just told us, we can't waste any time. Our best bet would be to split up so we can cover more ground quickly," she began, still intending to help out until she couldn't anymore. "What are your orders?"

"Sir," Alex said. "Lieutenant Mitchell is still unconscious in a Jeffries tube. She'll stay down a while longer, but we should free her quickly. If the thing her head decides to exit and go looking for another host, we'd be in real trouble. Then there's Doctor Abrams. I gave him painkillers and sedated him, but the man lost an arm. I need to get back to them both. Request permission to be relieved from my assignment to Lieutenant Geisler so I can go help Mitchell and Abrams."

Harvey nodded to the Senior Chief, giving him permission to do so. "Take Lieutenant Kemm with you," Harvey did say as the Kelpian pushed a cart of disc shooters over to the assembled group. "No one goes anywhere alone. That should help prevent you from becoming infected... or re-infected."

"Aye, Aye, sir," Alex said. He turned to Kemm. "Come on, Lieutenant. I promise to be gentle if I end up having to hide you in a Jeffries tube, too."

The Kelpian nodded to the Corpsman, handing him one of the disc shooters. "Lead the way, Senior Chief."

Alex led the Kelpian to a storage area. They grabbed an anti-grave stretcher and Alex grabbed a higher tier field kit than the one he had before. Theoretically, they'd only need the one stretcher once Alex freed Mitchell, then woke her up, definitely in that order. Mitchell would be shakey on her feet, but mobile. Abrams was another matter entirely.

"We have to find the Triosian and the Boreriri telepath," Camila spat after getting the last of the Medical personnel disced. "They know we're free now and going to take precautions."

"That brings me to a question then," Harvey said, looking at Jayla, Joey, and Camila. "You were all previously infected. Any idea where the Dolmoqour were being sent to infect the crew first?"

Jayla shook her head. “The one in my head had its hands full dealing with me and Kij,” she said. “It didn’t get a chance to coordinate with anybody else.”

"Every department head except Djinx had been infected and most of Security," Camila said. "The bridge is fully infected and most of the personnel have been forced to the cargo bays. Captain, if you give me my clearance back, I can lift General Quarters Three and gas the bridge and the VIP quarters where the Triosian and Boreri are if they're still there."

"There's just one problem with that," Harvey replied. "We rammed the Mississippi into deck fourteen. If all went as expected, deflector control should be gone, and the deflector knocked offline, meaning that the ship should now be out of the minefield, and will soon be under Guardian attack. If the Black Hawk goes limp, they'll destroy the ship for sure. We'll have to take the bridge the old-fashioned way. But your clearance is something I can restore here in a moment."

"Noted," the Security Chief acknowledged.

With the doors between Sickbay and his lab open, he was able to hear the back and forth. Though not normally one to get involved with senior staff conversations, Rhula turned around in his chair at the mention of the Chief Science Officer. "Did they attempt to infect him and he rejected it? That's what happened with you, right Doctor?"

“Yes, I- oh! I nearly forgot!” she quickly added, holding up her right hand, carefully keeping it away from anyone’s ear. “I’ve still got one on my arm. Or I don’t know, maybe that disc knocked it off.” She began searching the floor for any sign of the Dolmoquor, but she really didn’t know what to look for.

“Found it!” called nurse Lane, and she fired her phaser at the floor. “I think it was already dead though. It looked squashed.”

Joey tried to keep her expression as neutral as possible, but she was incredibly uncomfortable, exhausted and growing more and more agitated by the second. "Captain, with the possibility of the Guardians blowing us all out of existence, I think we should move... and soon," she stated, placing a hand on the nearest flat surface.

"I agree with the desire to live," Rhula offered, standing up from his chair. "Other than this electric shock method, what else have you tried?"

"Just this," Harvey said. "It's a gift from the Guardians. According to them, it was the most effective method they had for not just detection, but elimination as well."

The Bajoran pathologist approached Kij. "That fact that you were able to fight it off...that might give us a clue on how to defeat them. Certainly faster than trying to hit everyone with discs. It's possible that something about your biochemistry made it harder for the parasite to fully take over. How many other Trill are onboard and have any of them been infected?"

“Thirteen alpha and two beta,” Jayla replied. “All unjoined. Kij and I rallied all the past hosts against the Dolmoquor. I’m not sure if all Trill are naturally resistant, though. It’s possibly that something about our brains doesn’t allow them to fully integrate in the first place, which made it easier for me to fight.”

"That's helpful," the Bajoran said, surprised, for once, that the Chief Medical Officer was being useful.

"No others have been infected, though, there was talk of experimenting on our Science Chief to figure out a way for the Trill to be converted," the Intelligence Chief said.

"We never attempted to convert Djinx," Camila said. "He was bound and restrained on the bridge when we left it."

"Shooting everyone is definitely slow," Harvey noted. "But we can't sit here and let the clock tick by while we work on alternatives. Mister Rhula, keep at it, and let us know the moment you find a solution. Miss Di Pasquale, you said General Quarters Three was in effect? That explains why we saw so much of the crew cloistered to this deck, and the two below. We need to start clearing every section we can. Doctors Kij and Milo, I'll need you and the medical staff to take point with this deck."

“Aye, sir,” replied Jayla. She was still feeling exhausted and still using the nearest biobed for support, but she would push through as long as she possibly could.

Rhula looked at Kij again. "I'm going to need some of your blood," he said, picking up an extractor. "For science."

"Yeah, sure," said Jayla wearily. "Whatever you need."

The Captain looked to his two trusted men in red, and the security chief whom he placed no doubt in. "Commander Teixeira, Commander Walsh, and Lieutenant Di Pasquale, I need you to head for the bridge. Use the emergency passage to the Ready Room. It'll be overlooked by the Dolmoqour... I hope."

"Understood," Camila said.

"Can do," replied Terry. Emergency passage in the Ready Room, Terry thought to himself. Crazy ship has secret passageways that aren't Jeffries Tubes. A slight smile crossed his face as he pictured himself knocking on walls as he walked the corridors. Yeah, that'd be a year's worth of counselling sessions.

Thiago nodded his understanding. "Where are you going to be?" he asked.

"I'm heading for the Flight Deck. Once the Dolmoqour start figuring out what's really going on, they might try to escape via the shuttles there. They've got to be stopped before that happens."

Joey heard everyone get an assignment but her, which was just as well. A wave of pain flowed through her so strong, that had she not been holding onto something, her knees might have buckled. “Captain,” she panted as the pain began to increase. “Permission to be relieved of my duties.” And no sooner than the Intelligence Chief spoke those words, her water broke right there on the floor of sickbay... in front of everyone. It wasn’t her ideal scenario, but it wasn’t something that could be helped.

Completely forgetting her exhaustion and ignoring her spinning head, Jayla sprung into action, Abbey right behind her. “Get her to a birthing room,” Jayla ordered, “and into a gown. Nurse Lane, I want a fetal monitor hooked up to her as soon as she’s in position. Prepare an epidural. Let’s move!”

Harvey was torn. He wanted to follow Joey to the room and fulfill his responsibility as a father. His previous experience as a doctor also went crazy, knowing that his wife was still seven weeks early, and there would likely be complications with the twins at this point, even to the point of needing special sickbay care for the next couple of weeks. But, if the ship could not be freed from the Dolmoqour, it wouldn't matter anyway. He had to fight now for his family, and that included the crew of this fine starship that had trusted him this long.

Camila looked over and saw the water staining Joey's uniform, but couldn't stop. "It's a good thing we're in Medical," she said. "Captain's kids have prerogative."

Her day had gone from bad, to worse, but for Harvey's sake, Joey put on a brave face. She was absolutely terrified. "Go do what you have to do. You know where to find me when our side wins, and our side will win," she told her husband, trying to remain positive as always. Although, did she really believe it this time? Not really. With a quick kiss to his cheek on the side of his face that didn't take as much damage, Joey wished everyone good luck and followed Nurse Lane.

Harvey smiled weakly as Joey disappeared deeper into sickbay. He hoped to make short work of what would follow. "Before we take off, there's just one more thing left to do," Harvey said, gesturing for Thiago and Camila to follow him over to a workstation. Harvey entered a quick command to enable administrator access and then input a clearance code to access what was left of the security grid. "Damn," he muttered, noting that forcefields were still offline, as well as internal sensors and communications. A quickly tapped sequence restored Camila's security access, and another accessed the auto-destruct sequence. "Computer, activate auto-destruct for a ninety-minute countdown, authorization Geisler tango-foxtrot-nine-lambda. Destruct sequence one, code one-one-A."

Looking to his first officer, Harvey added, "I'm sorry, Commander. The Dolmoqour cannot be allowed to leave this system, no matter the cost." The words stung Harvey the most, even though he spoke them. He had the responsibility to protect the Federation, and if this became the only way to do it, that was what it would take.

"Agreed." He sighed deeply. This was not the first time in his career he was in the situation of helping to activate a ship's auto-destruct sequence. He had hoped to never find himself in such a position again, yet, here he was. "Computer, this is Commander Thiago Teixeira, Executive Officer. Destruct sequence two, code one-one-A-two-B."

Camila watched Harvey restore her clearance, then enter the auto-destruct command. She gave a mental sigh and resigned herself to whatever fate the quadrant tossed her way. It would be better than living with all this blood on my hands, she thought sadly.

"Lieutenant," Teixeira prompted.

"Then let's get this done," the ombre haired woman said before she entered her code for the self destruct, grabbed a PADD and headed out of Sickbay.

Thiago looked at Harvey. "Till we meet again, Captain," he said before following the Security Chief towards the Bridge.

Terry followed the others out after a nod to Harvey.

The computer beeped at the final code, stating, "Destruct sequence completed and engaged. Awaiting final code for ninety-minute countdown."

Harvey cleared his throat before looking to what remained of his assembled crew. "Code zero zero zero. Destruct." His throat tightened as he grasped the full reality of this moment. The destruct could be undone easily should he again lose senior staff, or even himself, to the Dolmoqour. Should he, and the senior staff fail, however, Harvey's words would be the final nail in the Black Hawk's coffin should the Guardians not take care of the ship first. But, there was no time for doubt now. Doubt got them into this mess. Determination would free them.

Or so he hoped. "Zero," he stated, finishing the code.

Red alert sounded once more, followed by the computer, announcing on all decks, "Destruct sequence is activated. No further audio warnings will be given."

"All right," Harvey said, picking up a disc shooter from the cart Kemm had left behind. "Let's finish this. Kij. Milo. Clean this deck fast, and get ready for injured." With that, he turned on his heels and left, taking the Boreriri with him.

 

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