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JL - Higgs/Nazir/Vaeros - Babies

USS Aldrin Personnel Recordings


by Lieutenant Riley Higgs, Doctor Erik Vaeros, Commander Yari Nazir, Lieutenant Commander Marielle Deniaud
[Stardate ]

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Joint log - Higgs/Nazir/Vaeros (as the Dumoe)

Stardate 1803.29

Babies


The ship was a mess as the Dumoe were transported from their planet.  Evacuees ran from the shuttles so that they could return to the surface.  They carried their lives - what clothes they could manage to fit and what valuables they could carry in the packs on their backs - on their persons.  The decks were loud as Starfleet officers attempted to shuffle their guests to the appropriate decks. Rooms were filled quickly. The Dumoe easily towered over their humanoid hosts, who were significantly shorter by several centimeters.  Their flowing robes rustled with each of their hurried steps. Young ones cried, their wails echoing over the cacophony of orders and directions and panicked exclamations.


Sickbay was no better.  The females who were fortunate to have laid their shells carried as many as they could in their arms - about three or four - their helpers carrying the rest.  The oblong shaped eggs were roughly thirty centimeters (12 inches) in height and fifteen centimeters (6 inches) in width. They shimmered lightly under the glow of the lights, a faint hue of blues and greens over the cream colored layer.  


“Where can we place our young?”  The tallest of the females, a Dumoe with regale stature spoke clearly and firmly.  Her voice was sultry and smooth and those around her were silenced. Ka'sira Eldain was the second mate of Dam'ris Eldain, the Exarch of Enlightenment.  It gave her a voice of value above most. Golden hues surveyed the medical bay as she held three of her shells in her arms. Flowing robes of gold and purple did nothing to hide her svelte form.  “They will need warmth. At least sixty centigrade (140° F). Have you not prepared a place for the next generation of our people?”


Riley was in the midst of commanding direction of a new set of arrivals to designated locations for temporary housing. Sickbay was booming with noise. The staff was hard at work dealing with an insanity that hadn't been seen before. Amongst those, another wave came all but flooding in. Before it had been voices strong, mild, sweet, raspy - all kinds had come through. Another new voice came through, brushing against her ears. This one felt a little different. A little more respect-demanding.


“Pull down the cots out of the back room and send them over to the cargo bays. There should be a storage container with nearly a hundred.”


“But that's--”


“It's hardly enough, I know, but right now, every bed is needed, no matter what kind. Go,” Riley instructed, finally turning to take in a new sight of an alien female that held a voice that was a little unlike the others. Just the sound alone required her attention. The sight she beheld was beyond a mere female. The moment she spoke, the other females, no, the rest of the Dumoe in the immediate area fell to a much quieter, much more hushed tone, if not silent entirely. The doctor/scientist might not have known exactly who she was dealing with now, but it was painfully obvious this female was someone very high on the charts of influence.


“We have incubators set up just beyond the triage stations, ma'am. As per our briefing, the temperatures are running as specified. Currently we are in the process of final stages of preparation of your people's current numbers. Once that is complete, we'll work to figure out spacing for any that hatch during the relocation. Right now, our priority is to pick you all up and get away from your star quickly and safely.” Riley spoke clearly, though calmly at the same time.


“That is unacceptable,” Ka'sira insisted firmly, though without hostility.  “Our young are sensitive to variations of temperature. It is already a problem to have them outside their natural incubation units.”  Her chin lifted despite the near pleading expression that graced her beautiful face. “It is our young. Please make them a priority.”


“Again,” insisted Riley in much the same fashion, “the incubators are running and ready for your unhatched young as has been specified to our briefings, as declared by your people. They are at the required temperatures.” Riley looked over her shoulder at the chaos, and looked back. “Look, it's like this…… we are literally the only ship close enough to take your colony, and even so, we aren't equipped normally to take such huge numbers. Right now, we need to focus on getting you all on board. We will do everything in our power to prevent any losses. We can adapt as we go, but if we focus more on comfort than being able to rescue all of you, the risk of losing a few becomes the risk of losing everyone.”


It was a cold hard truth, and not one she was happy with, but the fact still remained, she kept telling herself, was that losing a few was still better than losing it all.


“That isn't enough,” she proclaimed with ease.  “You only have room for a hundred of our shells, perhaps two.  We need space for nine hundred and fifty of our young.” Her lips dipped into a frown.  “Do you mean to tell me that we must sacrifice nearly eighty percent of our next generation?”


Riley shook her head. “No. I can get a few people to repurpose the stasis chambers to either become incubators themselves, or, more time saving, place the eggs in stasis, temporarily halting the--”


“Stasis will kill them!  Their metabolism requires constant supervision for adjustment.  To still the natural process is akin to murder.” Her eyes widened with her horror.  “You mean to tell me that we must ignore our beliefs because you were ill-prepared?!”


“To still the process would literally pause the entire process by which growth takes place! It's like hitting a pause button! You dare accuse us of ill preparation when your own people have zero way to get your own ships to you to help you, we are literally the only ship available for weeks, and we are currently running at capacity well beyond our capability, and you tell us we were not prepared. When we had a mere few hours to repurpose an entire ship.


Her eye twitched.  “I demand to speak to the captain.”  The women around her bristled and hissed.  They grew taller as they prepared to rush the space to claim it for their own needs.  Many began to glare at the security officers, going so far as to push against them. “I will not have a child tell me to ignore our beliefs for the sake of convenience.”


“Convenience has nothing to do with this! You're asking me to risk losing the entire ship and your colony!”


Ka'sira turned, her robes flying beautiful around her as she growled.  “Find me someone who can take care of this now! This is not up for this discussion. We are prepared to die for our young.  The spiritual well-being of our children will not be ignored.” Her strides took her toward a security officer and she glowered at the young man.  “Find me someone who has some ability to comprehend the severity of this situation.”


Riley had to bite her tongue, almost telling her to go die then. “if that is how you feel, then you may be told to stay some of your adult people to stay behind to die, so that your young can live. I will find you someone.” she had the perfect individual in mind. Someone cold and factual. She tapped her insignia. “Commander Nazir, your presence is being specifically requested at the sickbay if you have the time.” She stared at the female in front of her.


“I'm a bit busy right now, Higgs,” came the hushed response over the communication badge.  “What do you need?”


“My command of the sickbay that you assigned to me is being ignored by one of our guests, one of their female leadership, and demands someone higher than I, and refuses to accept our accommodations.”


“What does she want?”  The executive officer sighed impatiently.  


“Immediate repurposing for nine hundred fifty eggs at the incubations levels discussed before. I've explained-”


“Nine hundred and-  Gods.” There was a pause.  “Grab Deniaud. Tell her to make this a priority right now.  K'hevok can handle engineering.” Nazir paused again. “This is a first contact situation, Higgs.  I understand your frustration and your priorities, but you're one of the faces of the Federation. Just grin and bear it.”


Riley took a breath, closed her eyes, and gritted her teeth, taking a moment to regain herself. “Aye sir. I'll make the impossible possible. Higgs out.”


She tapped her badge once more. “Higgs to Deniaud.”


“Sup, Boson.  Bit a busy here.  What do you need?”  The sounds of engineering filled the communication badly.  


“I know. I need you here right now. Commander wants me to relay that Khevok should be able to take charge.”


There was a pause before she sighed softly.  “Understood. I'm on my way. What's the problem?”


“I need immediate repurposing of sickbay and science bays to incubate nine hundred fifty eggs of the Dumoe.”


“Nine hundred and fifty?!”  There was no way to hide the incredulity from her voice.  “They didn't tell us- No way you'll be able to fit- I'm on my way!”  The sound of her hurried pace was easily heard.


“Nine hundred fifty. You heard correctly.”


“Merde!  I'll be there in five minutes.  Deniaud out!”


She sighed and looked back to the female. “Okay. So, we have the ball rolling to make your needs happen. I am sorry about  any misunderstanding, ma'am.” That was not what she wanted to say, but that was what came out.


When the Dumoe female turned and simply gave a stiff nod with a hint of a smug expression, Riley decided then that she didn't much like this female. At all. She couldn't wait for the opportunity to arise to point out a mistake if or when she made one.


It was a matter of minutes before Marielle pushed her way deeper into sickbay.  She grunted softly when she felt an elbow connect with her chest. “Ow- Right in the-”  Her hand came up to protect herself. “I'm here.” A thin layer of sweat glistened along her brow.  She had run and pushed her way through the crowded hallway to get to her destination. “Boson!”


“Deniaud, thank God. I need your help changing the stasis chambers to incubators. And anything else.”


“That'll take too much time,” she shook her head.  “I got a plan. It's not going to make the arboriculturists and botanists happy, but we'll convert the arboretum and the hydroponics bay.  They're already equipped with the proper environmental controls. We'd just need to increase the humidity levels and tweak it to their specifications.  As long as those eggs aren't super huge, I think we may be able to fit all nine hundred or so in them.” The chief researcher glanced around the space. “You got measurements?  I've got Thiross and Esdan working shelving pods so we can build up instead of out.”


“That big,” she pointed at one of the eggs that the smug female held. “Ma'am, if you will follow her.”


Her eyes shifted towards the direction in which the Amazonian-esque physician motioned.  Silently, she accessed the size of the shell that was held in the Dumoe's arms. Irises shifted quickly with the calculations that flew threw her head.  “Yeah- No problem. I got this.” Marielle's chin turned towards Riley and she had no problems meeting the young lieutenant's gaze. Her smile was bright and warm, easy with confidence.  “I'll take over from here.” Her eyes shifted around the inundated medical bay. “I think you're needed here. I”ll have the information ready for you so you can read up, and we'll meet up again if you need a breakdown on the controls-  But the PADD will have everything.”


“Thanks. I appreciate it. I'll thank you later properly.”  With that, she turned and sent back to work.


“I certainly hope you're far more capable than that- woman.”  Ka'sira narrowed her eyes slightly at the science officer.


Her back straightened and she turned to regard the apparent leader with a great elegance that rivaled the Dumoe females.  “I assure you, Madame. Lieutenant Higgs is more than competent You will be working with the good lieutenant. She's one of our finest physicians.”  With a graceful movement of her arm, she motioned for her and her group towards the door. “Please- Follow me. I am Lieutenant Commander Mariëlle Deniaud.  Please tell me the exact specifications. I think we can amend our hydroponics and arboretum for your needs.” Behind her, the females who carried their precious shells followed Ka'sira.


Riley was left to her work in the sickbay and science bays, bouncing back and forth between the two. While she was fairly annoyed at the Dumoe primadonna, she felt better with Ellie taking the reins. Deniaud certainly seemed to be looking and acting better despite the chaos, and seeing her friend in such a better state did put a little more ease to her mind. Now if only there were a way to cork the arrogance of Ka'sira...



   
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