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Outnumbered

Posted on Tue Jun 12th, 2018 @ 9:07pm by Kairishana sh'Zharath & Thy'rali zh'Zharath & Commander Martin Sorenson & Petty Officer 2nd Class Julia Evans

Mission: A Misguiding Hand
Location: USS Vesta, Medbay

She supposed it probably wasn't fair to the doctor, bringing them all in for their exams at once. But the alternative, once she got her own formalities over with and no doubt got buried in work, would have been leaving Thy'rali to wrangle all three children alone for their exams, and if she was going to unfair to someone, she'd much rather it be the pinkskin than one of her mates.

Salathiah was squirming on Thy'rali's hip behind her, eager to get down; but Kairishana noted with a sigh that Aravaeli and Threlas had vanished once they entered, in the split-second way 5 years olds were wont to do. Vanished to ordinary eyesight, that is: The sheer amount of interference in the medical area made it more difficult than in many spaces, but it still wasn't overly hard for Kairi to pinpoint the pair's electromagnetic signatures after a moment, concealed behind a piece of equipment...And the two tiny pairs of antennae that poked over the top of it a moment later, as both children attempted to climb up onto it. Sharing a somewhat exasperated look with Thy'rali, who moved toward the pair, Kairi traded her for Sala, balancing her in one of her own arms, and held the other out in greeting to the uniformed pinkskin she assumed was the ship's medical officer.

"Excuse me. Are you the doctor?"

Martin had noticed the family of Andorians as he was finishing an exam for another new crew member and his daughter. It struck him as somewhat ironic, and not a little inconvenient, that Vesta was taking on a host of personnel with children just after Dr. Jai transferred off the ship. On the other hand, he had missed doing pediatric work. He generally liked children, and at times looked at the families onboard with a touch of envy... Though as he watched the two parents struggle with three wriggling, energetic children, this wasn't one of them.

"Yes, Dr. Sorenson," he replied with a welcoming smile. "I take it you're Ms. Cerin's new assistant. Please come this way." He gestured toward an exam room.

“Yes.” Kairi ducked into the room indicated, followed by Thy’rali who had Aravaeli and Threlas by their arms practically dragging them; Sala was too young to have figured out medical exams yet but the older two were decidedly not fans. “I have no idea how your species does this.” Kairi remarked to the doctor. “We barely made it to the ship in one piece with only the two of us to supervise; how species with only two genders manage to survive raising children with only two parents ever is beyond me...”

"I couldn't say," Martin chuckled, shaking his head. "I was an only child, though my parents claimed I was as much work as six. But I can offer a little help with supervision while you're in here." He lifted a hand, signaling Julia to join them in the exam room. "This way there'll be four of us and three children, so we'll only be marginally out-numbered," he quipped.

Kairi laughed slightly and nodded agreeably.

Heading for the doctor and the young family she said "Hello," Two of the young ones seemed to be the same age as Jimmy.

Two sets of quivering small antennae twisted toward one another as the pair of young Andorians exchanged a glance. "Hello." The reply had a degree of begrudging suspicion in it; clearly they weren't exactly fond of medical personnel.

Finally, all five Andorians were in the exam room, followed by the medical staff. Aravaeli and Threalas seemed to think that hiding behind Thy'rali would perhaps make the doctor forget their existence; Salathiah, set down by Kairi once the door was closed, was trying to open all the cabinets, but luckily hadn't managed it yet.

"I'm assuming our records transferred properly." Kairi waved a hand towards a computer on a nearby counter. "Hopefully."

Martin tapped the records open on his PADD and glanced at faces, or what he could see of the faces of the children obviously trying to be invisible to a doctor. "Everyone seems to be here. Whether the records are complete though, we'll have to determine." He patted the surface of the biobed lightly and smiled. "Who would like to go first?"

Vaeli and Threlas, if anything, attempted to stuff themselves even further behind Thy'rali. Kairi instead reached over and plucked up Salatiah, setting her on the space indicated. The littlest Andorian, rather than attempting to escape, reached over to a nearby tray of medical instruments and tried to make a grab for some, then, when thwarted in the attempt, directly for the tricorder in Martin's hand.

Far from pulling it back, Martin used his other hand to guide hers to grasp it. Starfleet medscanners were made to withstand nearly anything combat and/or harsh planetary environments could throw at them, so he wasn't too concerned about anything a toddler might do to it. "Here, for being so brave and curious, you can help me with your exam. Just move it up and down over yourself like this," he said as he moved it and her hands along with it, using a thumb to dial up the sound and lights a bit since he'd seen that similarly aged children tended to respond to lights and beep-beep-boop sounds with delight.

"Shreya! Look!" Sala excitedly looked over at Kairi as she moved the device, then looked back at Martin, giggling at the device made a particularly loud sound. "I do i' right?" Tiny antennae wiggled, perhaps tracking some response of the scanner that unlike the lights and sounds, were perceptible only to those with Andorian senses.

"Yes, indeed - you might grow up to be a doctor," Martin affirmed with a smile, and turned the device slightly so she could see the read out. "And look here, it says you are very healthy young zhen." He leaned a little closer and glanced at the other youngsters. "Maybe I should have you help scan your your siblings, eh?"

A wide grin spread over Salathiah's face, possibly at the prospect of guaranteed inclusion in something as the youngest. Perhaps drawn out in part by what appeared to be a lack of shots or bloodwork applied to their younger sibling, Aravaeli and Threlas had finally poked their heads out, urged forward by one of Thy'rali's hands on each of their shoulders as they approached the doctor.

Guessing at some of the cause of the initial hesitance, the doctor added, still as though talking to Sala, "Though I'm afraid you won't get to give them any shots. The records here show all vaccinations up to date."

This put less hesitant smiles on the faces of the older two children finally, and they climbed up onto the biobed, scrambling up like a pair of rock climbers rather than accepting any adult assistance in the endeavor. Salathiah moved her hand with glee along with Martin's as he scanned both of her older siblings.

Martin chuckled quietly at her obvious delight - maybe she really would go into medical - and let her go to it. The biobed was also recording so he didn't need to halt her and one at a time. After a few moments, he did stop the scan though and pull their hands back. "Let's see what it says..." he tapped a couple inputs, sorting shen and thaan readings into a split screen and pointed to each. "You see, they are both healthy too. And growing well, just like you, in the top 25% for height and weight for your ages. So, I think you all get a clean bill of health. Unless you parents have some concerns..?" He glanced toward Kairi and Thy'rali.

"A variety of them." said Thy'rali, with an expression partway between a grimace and a grin. "All of which are likely better answered by the ship's daycare..."

"That I can't help with. All I can do is finish your exams so you can get out of here and can talk to them," Martin said, then glanced at Julia. "Though Nurse Evans might have some input since she has children too."

"Oh?" Thy'rali glanced over at the nurse. "How old are they?"

Julia smiled at the question. "I have a 5 year old, Jimmy. Did you just arrived on the Vesta? I must have missed that part of the conversation."

"Yes...My sh'za, Kairishana, has been posted to your diplomatic detachment." Thy'rali indicated where Kairi was attempting to gather up children nearby. "Our other two bondmates are assigned elsewhere; on a smaller starship and at an archeological dig...Neither situation allowed children to reside there." Thy'rali's antennae bobbed slightly, perhaps less than comfortable still with the current separation of the family.

"That must be hard for you, not being together," she said. "John and I have been lucky that we have been posted on the same ship together." She noticed they had their hands full with the children, and couldn't help but offer. "If you ever need a hand with the children. Just ask. Jimmy is a hands full as well, maybe we can share experiences."

"Thank you." Thy'rali replied with a smile. "Though, at this age..." She glanced over at the twins, and imagined a third child of the same age as well. "...What they are most likely to share is mischief..."

"So we'll need to get them in a surroundings where they can't do anything like that, and what will tire them out, preferably." Julia said with a laugh.

"I'm sure the childcare center will have suggestions," Martin put in, imagining that they must have a lot of such resources to manage the number of young children on the ship. Not to mention the not-young children, like Jack... "Or you can check with engineering. I'm sure something could be arranged. For now though," he looked back at Sala, "Would you like to help me scan your parents too?"

Sala nodded, antennae nearly quivering, with a huge grin as she pointed at Thy'rali. "Zhavey!"

Thy'rali shared a knowing look with Julia and stepped forward, letting the duo scan her before moving aside for Kairi to be subjected to the same.

Martin once again moved his hand with Sala's holding the scanner, mostly letting her wave it up and down, but restraining growing enthusiasm just a little. "Very good. I appreciate your help. Hold that for me, please, while we finish up here," he told her, thumbing off the controls and opening a small window on his PADD to the code for replicating a toy scanner since he had a feeling he might not get his back without a lot of fuss otherwise. "I don't see any health issues for either of you - other than indications of a bit of low level sleep deprivation, which is understandable under the circumstances," he said, addressing the adult Andorians. "Before we finish, are there any health concerns you have, either for yourselves or the children?"

"That level of sleep deprivation is only going to get higher, probably." said Kairi in a resigned tone as Thy'rali moved to pick up Sala. "I don't suppose you can recommend a coffee blend aboard..."

"Several, in fact," Martin laughed. "But I recommend using the diplomatic office's replicator. I was persuaded to provide a medical override on the standard caffeine limit for that one."

Kairi laughed slightly with a grin at this information; a good indicator not only of an appropriate caffeine source but also an early read on her new boss as being appropriately tapped into and able to influence the local situation.

Julia had headed for the replicator to take the kids tricorder and then made sure two more were replicated. One for each of the children. She might only have one child, but she'd experienced that they had a hard time at this age to share. Most had, at least. She took them, hid them behind her back and waited for the exam to be finished.

"If that's all, I'll just going to need my scanner back before you go," Martin said, adding quickly, "But since you've shown such aptitude, we're going to give you one more your size to practice with."

"Mine?" Sala said, relinquishing the scanner with--for a toddler--minimal reluctance when provided with a replacement. Vaeli and Threlas, meanwhile, looked pleased (or possibly relieved) to have ones to match; as if the order of the universe was out of joint when their younger sibling had something they didn't. Kairi and Thy'rali shared a fleeting glance--possibly because the devices made noise and electromagnetic emissions spikes their various senses would no doubt be subjected to all evening--but likely thought the fuss they would face without the gadgets would be far worse than the effects of their presence.

"Thank you." said Kairi with a nod to Martin and Julia.

"You're welcome," Martin replied, giving a quick thankful glance to Julia for thinking of making enough for all the kids. "If you need anything else, let us know."

Julia smiled at the three happy faces in front of her. She knelt in front of the twins and said. "You practice well with those, that way you can someday become a doctor yourself."

A pair of inquisitive yet still somewhat dubious nods followed, before the three miniature Andorians and their parents made their way out of the medical ward, Salathiah perched on Thy'rali's hip and Aravaeli and Threlas with their hands each in one of Kairishana's.

 

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