USS Vesta

A Play-by-Nova roleplay game.

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Another Case

Posted on Thu Jan 28th, 2021 @ 6:13am by Chief Petty Officer Baen Sloane & Commander Martin Sorenson & Lieutenant Two-Six Trenton

Mission: When the Bough Bounces
Location: Med Bay
Timeline: MD 04 : 1435 Hrs
1373 words - 2.7 OF Standard Post Measure

[Deck 16: Sickbay]

Trenton caught up with his Security Officers at the turbolift and they rode it to Deck 16. Trenton happened to notice the female officer's uniform, it looked rather loose fitting, not regulation at all. He was about to mention it when the doors opened and they had arrived.

Entering Sickbay they found the waiting area held a number of people and several children. Trenton immediately began to suspect that Sloan was not the only case of this mysterious de-aging.

A Nurse checked them in and led them to a Bio bed. Trenton bent down and lifted Sloan up onto the bed. "Alright Baen, you will need to sit here quietly until the Doctor comes to examine you, alright?"

Baen huffed up at the Security Chief. If he wasn't in charge (or Asahi), he would have had some things to say. But he kept his mouth shut, nodding.

They waited and Trenton looked at the female officer's uniform again. It was now looser than it had been a few moments ago. The jacket looked three sizes too big for her.

"Petty Officer Henderson, a personal question for you" He stepped in and asked quietly "How old are you?"

She frowned a moment, caught unawares, then replied "I'm twenty eight Sir, why?"

"Do you feel alright?" Trenton continued. The woman before him looked to be in her late teens, certainly no older than twenty two or three at the most.

"Yes, I feel fine... why?" She went to brush a stray hair from her eye and stopped when she saw her arm. The sleeve of her jacket was several inches too long for her and covered her hand.

A look of puzzlement and then alarm crossed her face. "But..." She flapped the sleeve about in the air "I don't understand... what happened to my uniform?!"

"I think you better have a seat on the next bed" Trenton suggested gently. "I think you've got the same condition as Mister Sloane here"

The Security Officer opened her mouth to reply, but left it hanging open as she walked to the next bio bed and climbed up. She flopped the loose sleeve too and fro in her lap, shaking her head in bafflement.

A moment later Sorenson arrived.

"Another one," Martin sighed, then noticed the actual child with Trenton and ran his medscanner over him. "Make that another two. Nurse, take Henderson," he ordered, waving one of the nurses, herself already looking barely mid-20s over to handle the less advanced case, He ran a hand over his face - it had been a long day and didn't look to be ending anytime soon - before turning his attention to the 'child'. "Who do we have here?"

The 'child' puffed his chest out and pointed at himself proudly. "Chief Petty Officer Baen Sloan, Sir!" He immediately deflated. "I was not like this this morning..."

"Yes, I believe you," the doctor assured wearily as he checked the readings. "I've seen dozens of cases of people who seem to be aging backwards - a few at a rapid rate, which seems to be the case with you." He frowned, looking at the data. The phenomenon was new enough that they didn't have a handle on how to estimate the rate with any real accuracy. "When was the last point you recall being adult sized?"

"Finally," Baen whispered under his breath, sitting upright. This whole day was a mess. "I was fine up till about lunch time. Then, next thing I know, Lieutenant Kita was trying to get all my work from me because I was ... this."

If that was accurate, this was the most rapid case yet. The doctor checked his readings and ran a second scan - not enough difference to gauge rate, which he took as a good sign that Sloan wouldn't be pre-school age by the end of the exam. "I'm guessing you were one of those kids who developed early - probably almost your adult height by earlier teens so the effects weren't obvious until you hit a sudden reverse growth spurt." He shook his head. "I'll give you credit for superior focus on your work that you didn't realize it was happening."

"Thank you... I guess?" Sloan shrugged. "It was a bit of backlog I was helping the Lieutenant with... and then whatever else I had to do.

Trenton listened to the Doctor with growing alarm. Dozens of cases?. Waiting until Sorenson had concluded his examination of Sloan, he asked. "Doctor, just how wide spread is this condition? This appears to me to be a serious security threat to this vessel... Has Command been informed?"

"Not yet. Honestly until an hour ago I barely believed my own readings," Martin admitted in a voice that suggested he could still only barely believe he wasn't in the middle of some weird dream. "But I plan to talk to the Commodore soon, once I've had a chance to review enough data to have some answers about how widespread it is and how it's advancing. I'd hoped to get input from Dr. Bathory since he's the expert on aging, but he seems to have disappeared."

Trenton nodded. "I would suggest we make informing the Commodore a priority. This Doctor Bathory has disappeared?" An expert on the possible condition was missing, that immediately set Trenton's mind running.

"He hasn't been answering his comm. I sent someone to try to find him just before you arrived but haven't heard back yet," Martin explained. He considered the Security Chief a moment - that Borg implant would be a problem if Trenton started de-aging like Sloan. "If you don't mind, Two-Six, I think would be a good idea to scan you for signs of this."

"Proceed Doctor" Trenton stood still while being scanned but continued his questions "So you have been unable to locate this Doctor Bathory and have not heard back from the person sent to find him?" This was also of concern.

"It hasn't been long, so my orderly may still be looking for him," Martin explained as he ran the scan over Trenton. "But Bathory not responding is concerning. It's one thing for an absentminded professor type to ignore a comm or two, but after several... well, that's when I sent someone to look for him." He looked over the readings and expelled a relieved breath. "You don't appear to be de-aging, but I'd like to check you again tomorrow since," he looked at Sloan, "you've obviously been exposed and we don't know how transmission works yet. I'm going to give you a steri-field unit to wear as a precaution. It will hopefully protect you from contracting it, or protect others if you already have."

"Understood Doctor." Trenton agreed "With your permission, I will have Security personnel report for screening as soon as possible. If this becomes widespread we will have to start isolation procedures and restrict movement about the ship. I will need security teams to implement that."

"Yes, please do," Martin said as he opened a drawer. "I need to analyze the day's results before I talk to the Commodore, but Security readiness would be an important a data point to have."

"I will also endeavor to locate Doctor Bathory." Trenton did not like coincidences, a expert in aging was aboard the ship and suddenly the crew began de-aging? That sounded very suspicious.

"Thank you." The doctor reached into a drawer and withdrew a palm-sized portable steri-field unit, making a mental note to ask Engineering to replicate more of them as he handed it to Trenton. "Take this and let me know what you find. Try not to touch anything though - that unit should protect you, but I don't know enough about what's causing this and there's no point in taking chances."

Trenton fitted the device to his belt and activated it. There was a soft hum and he felt a faint tingling on exposed skin. He beckoned to his other Security officer, who had been speaking with Henderson, the man came to join him and received a steri-field unit also.

"Thank you Doctor. We will attempt to find your missing Scientist" Trenton nodded to Sorenson and departed.


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