Sundry Monday Morning II
Posted on Sun Jul 29th, 2018 @ 6:06am by Captain Charybdis MacGregor
Location: USS Victory, Deck 6, Sickbay
Tags: Qurka Qurg
Meanwhile, in sickbay
Siivas and the medical staff, along with contractors and family, were almost literally ripping sickbay apart. Qurka was working with the technicians on the newest version of the biobed IMC had created, the Victory would be the first "public" clinic in which it was trialed. As she has been the lead designer and technician on the project and tasked by them to develop it for a variety of species not normally encountered, she had been responsible for incorporating the biological needs of species known only to the Klingons.
In Klingon culture, women were considered warriors but they were also normally relegated to support roles, since males outnumbered females nearly six to one. Because of warfare within Klingon society and the rate at which males were killed off, the acceptable ratio of survivors fell to a ratio of almost two to one, leaving the strongest to mate and succeed the next generation. As the Klingon cultural machine operated of a warfare-honor concept, roles such as engineers, technicians, scientists and medics were almost entirely populated by females. Males who found themselves in those roles had to either work diligently to prove themselves in battle AND to succeed in their other professions, of they were forced to live in a role of inequality, looked down upon by other males and females alike.
This was often the fate of the Qo'lod'ni, or "No Sons". Either they preferred their own sex or they preferred intellectual warfare and were not allowed to enter the breeding pool by the warriors, branded as social outcasts and sometimes killed for their orientations.
It always amazed the Deltans who had known the Klingons a few centuries before, before they had been invaded by the Hur'q, had been a much more open and accepting society where honor was used as a sort of coin and Great Houses competed in the various applications of society (art, architecture, science, philosophy, medicine, education, war-arts, etc) to gather honor and accolades to drive their economy.
Qurka stood in the middle of a small knot of technicians, watching them with a firm line to her mouth, her jaw clenched and muscles working as if she chewed something tough and her fists placed on her hips. She wore a functional and yet attractive dress, high necked and long sleeved, it was quilted and a sage green color with crimson pipe trim, with a corset of brown leather with loops and silver metallic metal "sticks" they were looped over, pushing her ample bosom up.
The dress came to her ankles, was slit in the front to her knees and when she walked revealed she wore thick-soled high-heeled leather boots that came to her knees and matched her corset. A wide rectangle was open at her clavicle revealing skin and then three inches below that a wider rectangle showed the top of her breasts and cleavage, all framed in the crimson piping. She was shapely, tall and muscular. Waves of curly copper framed her black eyes, dusky skin and full lips contrasting with her prominent cheekbones and her finely arched eyebrows. There was something about her that, if one knew Klingons, seemed different. But it took a medical exam or a physical examination at a level of intimacy she didn't allow just anyone.
Siivas knew her secret, as did the company and those who worked with her, only because it was necessary. Corporate discretion, however, prevented that information from being shared.
The biobed unit was vertical and cylindrical, more like a frame with transparent sides that acted as consoles and displays as needed in full color with a solid panel of machinery in between the two transparent sides and opposite the open side. They did not recline, rather they suspended the individual in free-fall using a tiny null-grav generator and micro-tractors to maintain position. Each unit projected a steri-field and could be used for surgical operations, if necessary, with the tools stored in special receptacles and near at hand on either side where they could be charged and diagnosed by the main unit's OBC. And if privacy was needed, the unit's transparent panels could opaque via voice command or manual entry.
Jura, one of the Efrosian Warrior-Priests knelt next to Rethvalaas th'Tralaav, Andorian thaan as they worked on the power couplings and the data network assembly, adapting the universal coupling on the unit to the Starfleet feeds. A moment later they sat back and Reth looked up, antennae forward and spread confidently and curious, nodded to Qurka. Jura sat back but kept an eye on a small engineering tricorder he carried, white hair pulled back into a long braid down his back contrasting sharply with his iconic black long tunic and pants and boots.
Qurka looked to Siivas who nodded and touched the correct sequence on the control console, releasing the power flow to the node at ten percent. Qurka moving to the side as the telltales came up on standby and input the diagnostic command in power-save mode. They all waited in silence as the unit flashed symbols and characters across the transparencies on each side, both sides, ran through a soft jumble of sounds, ran opacity and transparency tests and then checked it database and processors.Just as the doors opened and the Captain entered, the unit spoke softly and distinctly into the silent sickbay.
A cheer went up, and Charybdis smiled. Leave it to Siivas to not only find the best equipment, but the best people to install it... they had barely been onboard twenty minutes and they had already achieved success, with what appeared to be a rather complex and sophisticated bit of technology that looked rather fascinating... but she could wait to look into it another time. For now, it was time to be supportive and charming for the troops.. and gracious.
KLINGON KLINGON KLINGON Give it a rest, woman. Bigger than life and twice as loud and right there, you keep that little smile where it is and you be Captain Charybdis, by Janus. Hm... Andorians really are a pretty color when they aren't looking at you like a germ, she mused as an aside.
"It seems I've arrived just in time to congratulate you on a job well done..." she offered cheerfully, stepping closer to the celebrating collective with her hands clasped behind her back. Hopefully no one would notice her white knuckles.
"Captain!" the Klingon woman, high ridged forehead lending to her fierce appearance yet, strangely, her pointed teeth were white and straight, advanced on her with purpose and offered her hand. Charybdis took it, then the Klingon clasped it with both of hers and shook it twice, with gusto. "I am Qurka! I have long wished to meet the Starfleet woman who would be captain, to show these things the Federation calls 'men' what true strength and skill is!" She seemed to be snarling but her lips were upturned, her eyes bright, radiating pleasure through her touch.
Determined, she made eye contact and swallowed what rose up inside her even as she noticed that the woman appeared to be wearing just a touch of eyeshadow. "Well... I've yet to teach them anything as yet, but I've high aspirations... and this will certainly help. Is this device your design?" she asked, turning the subject away from herself and instead to the work. Pink long manicure... well, that is definitely not threatening at least...
"I did not design it but I have modified the design," she replied and stepped over to it, punching the transparent part solidly and making it resonate in a low key. "It was too delicate when I was asked to take over the final design implementation to support hardier races, such as Klingon, Andorians, Vulcanoid-races," she said the last with just the slightest pause. "Transparent aluminum sides, glassy duranium fixtures, non-porous ceramic lining," she pointed to those components, "redundant processors and low-power capacitors. The biobed has many pre-programmed self-treatable routines built in, including basic physical examinations. The Deltan design called for elegance and efficiency, my design incorporated durability and redundancy," she fisted her hips and thrust out her prodigious bosom proudly. "This stage of the connection and boot up is successful. If we can bring the unit to full power, each unit will require less than seventy percent of the Starfleet model."
Technical jargon was easier for Char to focus on, and thus she could speak more freely. "Admirable! Given the rough treatment that starships tend to encounter in combat, durability is a definite plus. As well as patients potentially thrashing while in pain, I could see wrecking the diagnostic equipment as a genuine hazard." She resisted dancing her fingertips across the controls... never mess with another scientist's calibrations.
"There is much more for us to do yet," Siivas slid in smoothly and though Qurka paused, as if to argue, she nodded to Siivas and stepped back as if realizing she was monopolizing the Captain. "We have eleven more of these to install, partitions to remove, the surgical bay has to be converted, the medical computer and I need to have a serious conversation and the internal biosensors are sadly in need to attention." The exotic and beautiful Andorian thaan glanced up at Siivas, who gave her a slight nod. She rose fluidly to her feet, her antennae broadcasting pleasure and with a nod to the Captain, she grabbed a toolkit while the Efrosian that had been with her followed her out.
"Well, it seems as though, as always, you have the situation well in hand. Is there anything that I can do to help other than not getting in the way and not gumming up the works, as it were?" the captain asked with a polite smile. Don't offer, he is going to...
"Qurka?" Siivas turned to the Klingon consultant. "Now that we have the basics down, would you like to see the top-of-the-line Starfleet ship?"
The Klingon's head snapped up as if she was scenting prey but her eyes shone with all the giddy of a eight year old girl getting her first real dress and getting ready for her first cotillion. "I... I would be pleased to, Doctor!" she all but gushed, clasping her hands tightly as if she were going to wring them gleefully and realized how immature that would be. Her eyes darted back and forth between the Doctor and the Captain.
Siivas turned to Charybdis and smiled, "Captain, would you mind taking Qurka on a tour? She is a bit of an admirer of yours from her childhood and has always wanted to serve in Starfleet. And while she is a Federation citizen," he paused and regarded the fierce woman who looked down and heaved a sigh, "Starfleet isn't as evolved as they'd like to think themselves."
And you are forcing me to face it... well played, Eshuur, well played. Internally she was still working at making peace with the idea of a Klingon standing there, but Siivas knew all of the buttons to push. She was a Federation citizen. She faced discrimination at every turn for being unlike what was expected of her. She was an admirer of Char's (which somehow rather boggled her mind, but then, she was a minor historical figure, and likely Siivas had talked her up). She was an extended part of Siivas' entourage, which meant that he likely knew the woman better than she knew herself. And she wanted to serve in Starfleet... which had been Char's first real actual conscious thought once she had been given the opportunity- to serve in the fleet that embraced diversity.
There was, it seemed, common ground to be found even amongst her enemies. Tolerance. Diversity. Enlightenment. Today she was called upon to be Starfleet, and represent it in an entirely different way than she was accustomed... but one that she of all people should embody. She angled her head upwards at the Klingon woman and smiled genuinely.
"It may be a bit of a hike, as we are still in a considerable state of disrepair, Qurka, and my duties pull me here and there. But you've the legs to keep up I suspect... I would be honored to give you a tour."
"I am..." Qurka seemed at a loss for words and blinked several times before she said in a low voice, "I am thankful, Captain, for the time and humbled by your generosity."
"Think of it as repaying... " she searched for what little she knew of the Klingons, and aimed for her best guess, "a debt of honor."
She winked at Siivas as she departed with the Klingon woman in tow as her communicator beeped for her, calling her to her next duty.