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What Lies Beneath

Main Sickbay <Deck 16> [Gibraltar Station]

The Main Patient Ward of Sickbay is an ovular room, wider at the aft than at the fore. The main door is in the aft wall, and directly to its right is a wall unit with receptacle for PADDs and a low counter upon which are arrayed fluid suspension modules. Against the starboard wall, next to the counter and receptacle, is the first of four biobeds, each in its own tiny alcove, heads to starboard, one by one to the aft wall. The biobeds are bluish gray, with a shimmering multicolored blanket on each which can keep a patient warm when necessary. At the head of each bed is a small monitor and a gray chair sits to the left, or aft, of each bed. To port of the main door is a large white display panel, beneath which is a counter supporting a variety of medical instruments. In the center of the room is a single biobed, bluish gray like the others, with that same blanket, but boasting a surgical support frame that creates an arch over the middle of the bed. The frame can be opened to allow patients to be moved if need be. Port, there is an alcove leading to an office and the Med Lab. Fore of this is a large bio display which can show the readouts of any patient in the ward. Fore again, there is a door leading to the Second Ward, next to which is a small utility cart and another counter with fluid suspension modules beneath a wall receptacle. The room is lit both by a large assembly over the central bed, which is in actually a sensor cluster meant to aid medical procedures, and also by lighting panels in the rest of the ceiling. Alert tracers line the wall above each biobed.

Jaran Salvir
Bunni Aventino

[Current Time]

OOC Time: Thu Jun 28 15:31:48 2007
Earth Time: May 17 09:58:40 2376
Star Time: 53373.7 13:56:02

(We are clearly returning to Sickbay just after Solvek and Brooks left, with Aventino on the biobed and Salvir in a chair next to her, preparing to duplicate his success with Solvek.)

Salvir takes a few deep breaths before he focuses and once again makes telepathic contact with Aventino's mind.

Aventino is still sedated, sleeping face-down in a puddle of drool.

Correspondingly, the insides of her mind echo with a hushed whisper of sleep. There's not really any physical boundary to space, realistically defined, just sort of a myriad blur of images floating around an undefined space. It's still very light, not blindingly so, as before, but all the colors on the images are sort of washed out as if in intense sunlight, and intense scrutiny of any one image causes it to fade further to white. Bunni's there, laying face down, sedated and drooling on the bed of soft white nothing, her uniform and undergarments in a conspicuous black pile on the floor by the bed, even her slightly tanned skin jarringly dark against the white.

Salvir walks up to the lying form and kneels down next to her. He gently places a hand on her shoulder and says. "Aventino... it's time to wake up now..."

Aventino takes a soft breath, and her dark brown eyes open, she licks the drool from the side of her mouth, "Just call me Bunni," she replies, the patterns of white against color suddenly becoming starkly contrasted before fading back into the washed-out color of the world around her. She slowly sits up, obviously not shy, nor attempting to cover herself. "Have you got the answer, yet? Everything's going to be fine?"

Salvir smiles and reaches down to the floor to pick up some of her clothing, handing it to her. "Yes, we do have the answer. But we need to bring the thing inside your mind to us here first. And that means that you need to fight what you feel and start denying what it's making you feel."

Aventino takes her uniform in her lap, setting her hands on top of it and starting to look worried, "There is something, then? Solvek said there was something in here, but I can't see anything... I mean... I'm alone in here, most of the time..." she explains, "I can't find anyone else-- I mean, besides you, right now." The white glow begins to intensify along with the tension in Bunni's form, which makes her eyes jump to the walls, her shoulders hunching, terrified as that white glow begins to whisper incomprehensible words.

Salvir looks at the walls. "And that's it there... it's all around you here. Watching you."

As if on cue, a white swatch of wall sprouts... an eye. Just one, small, black, at indeterminate distance, either very small and very near, or rather large and further away. "Oh, Jesus Christ," Bunni backs up a little on the bed, evidently scared of the thing. The incomprehensible garble of whispering returns, and in the middle of it enough of it pieces together to sound like, "It's going to be okay. Relax. It's going to be okay."

Salvir puts his hand on Bunni's shoulder. "Yes, it will be okay. Because that thing is going to go away. You don't need it. You never have."

Aventino does seem, in some strange way, to relax, huddling up at the edge of the bed and covering herself with her uniform as the one eye turns into two, and a faint slip of the palest pink marks the arrival on the edge of the bed of a rather large white rabbit. It wriggles its nose, most of its body so white that it's completely invisible against the whiteness of the bed unless it moves, which it does, draping itself comfortably over Salvir's leg.

Salvir looks down at the rabit, frowning. "I'm afraid your time is up. She doesn't need your help anymore. She's already acheived enlightenment."

"I did what?" Bunni wonders, looking up in confusion, "Is that it? A rabbit?" she asks, "I mean... a brain rabbit?" she modifies. But by the time she's posited the question, another pair of eyes have popped out of another swatch of white, moving away from the wall and toward the Counselor, putting its little paws up on his back. At each of the other two directional markers another set of black eyes open up, and these, too, come onto the bed, one heading for the Counselor, the other jumping up onto Bunni's lap.

"EverythingsgoingtobefinenoworriesmydearsI'lltakecareofthingshereyou'llbefine," whispers from the collective white.

Salvir looks at Bunni. "It's a psychic device left by the Lacunes. They created it to force all members of their population to overcome their negative emotions. It essentially forces you to be happy, to fulfill your desires. But there's a flaw. Some kind of damage, most likely. Once an indivitual achieves 'enlightenment' it's no longer needed, so it destroys the feelings it built up so that it can continue it's function in a never ending cycle. The answer is in you. You need to face the darker side of your psyche, to accept it and overcome it. You need to force it out of you."

Aventino's eyes widen and the white becomes even brighter, more intense, four more sets of eyes, then eight more, then sixteen more after that all blinking open from the white, hopping toward the Counselor, bounding up over one another, "Oh-- is THAT all?" Aventino asks incredulously, "Just face the dark side of my psyche-- I didn't even know I HAD one!" Thirty two more after that, clamboring up over his limbs and trying to hide him in the white that obscures the rest of the room.

"It'sokayeverything'sfinedon'tlistentohimyou'realright," the jumbled collection of voices whisper.

Salvir ignores the rabits. "Why did it choose to accentuate your libido? Have you had difficult relationships in the past?"

Aventino thinks hard, but the harder she thinks, the harder it is to do so, "I don't think so? No worse than anyone else, I guess?" she tries to offer helpfully, squinting at the Counselor as sixty four more rabbits come to join the pile, and it does become rather hard to spot him in the sea of white. She grunts a little and rises to her knees, burrowing through the rabbits to try to find the Couselor in the sea of white, "Doctor? Are you still with me?" She asks, the rabbits, indeed, seeming to be attempting to push him out of the white-laced bubble and correspondingly out of Bunni's head.

Salvir struggles to stay inside but looses the battle to the fluffy sea...

(The scene fades into a commercial back, and we return some time later, after Salvir has left Sickbay.)

Aventino is under sedation, under the orders of Doctor Salvir. She's out like a light, curled on the biobed, hugging on that stuffed rabbit.

Brooks happens to come into Sickbay just as the nurses are un-sedating Aventino in order to feed her. So she heads over that way.

Aventino's eyelids flutter before they part completely, irises shifting slowly back and forth as she uncurls slowly on the biobed, "Am I still in Sickbay?" she wonders, "I am..." she confirms, as she sees where she is, "Oh," she offers, sounding a little weak.

Brooks has her arms wrapped around her middle, and smiles to Aventino as she walks over. "Hey. How're you feeling?"

Aventino still looks a little stunned, "Okay," she replies numbly, her mouth seeming to fumble a bit with the word. "I dreamt I was home, in bed, asleep," she sighs, the thought of it sounding incredibly appealing. "Buck nekkid on my nice sheets... you know, just after you shave your legs..." she gropes toward a vague feeling of comfort. "What's going on?"

Brooks shrugs to this. "Counselor Salvir's trying to fix people... Solvek and I are finally getting back to work, and planning the wedding... otherwise, the station seems pretty quiet. I wanted to be sure you were okay."

Aventino looks at the tray of... lunch? Dinner? "What time is it?" she asks, "Doctor Salvir was by... am I cured, then?" she asks.

"Well, you're still here, so I'd guess no. He managed to force the thing out of Solvek, though. He's back to normal." Which, by Brooks' tone, is a good thing. "It's... mid afternoon."

"Oh," Bunni replies, seeming oddly unconcerned by the answer and poking at food with a fork, not seeming particularly appetized by the sickbay fare. She sets the fork down and goes back to petting hte Rabbit, instead, eyes seeming somewhat vacant. "Good," she replies softly, "I mean. About Solvek."

Brooks tilts her head a bit. "So the Counselor'll be able to help you soon..."

Aventino nods her head quietly, "It's alright. I'm okay," she murmurs. "I'm not in pain anymore," she adds, petting Rabbit's ears, eyes lowered.

"Yeah, but, you're still here..." Brooks shrugs. "Anyway, it don't matter. I hope you get better soon.

Aventino lifts her eyes briefly, really not seeming herself in the least, as if the better part of her were still sedated. "Thanks," she offers, her eyes tearing up a little bit.

Salvir comes walking into the sickbay. He heads straight towards Aventino's biobed. "And how are you feeling today?"

Aventino shifts her eyes quietly toward Salvir, not moving, otherwise. "Okay," she replies rather flatly.

Salvir nids. "It's okay....We're going to get it out. I'm going to try a different approach to this."

Aventino nods her head, seeming dutifully assured, "I'll be alright," she murmurs softly.

Salvir pulls up a chair and sits next to Aventino. "Okay... ready to try again?

Aventino looks briefly back to Fred, then back to Salvir, and she nods again.

Salvir nods. To help with the focus, he places his hand on hers. He closes his eyes and starts the telepathic link again.

Aventino looks down to the hand on her hand, and her eyes droop shut with her head bowed thus.

Brooks happens to be standing near Aventino, and after a moment, moves off to one side...

Inside, she's where he found her the first time, except now dressed in some plain and comfortable looking civilian clothing, curled up on the 'bed', seeming dead to the world.

Salvir kneels next to Aventino. "It's okay... you can wake up, now."

Salvir finds a hand on his shoulder, restraining him as he goes to kneel by the sleeping Lieutenant. A white hand, more papry than ghostlike, as if drawn in faint grey pencilstrokes on the white swaths surrounding Aventino's mind and come to life. The figure looks faintly like Ambassador G'Mar, except for the silver glistening third eye in the middle of his forehead. "Don't wake her. She's tired. She needs to rest. I have a lot of work to do."

Salvir grabs the hand on his shoulder as he stands up and turns to face the figure. "No. I think you've done quite enough here..." And with that, he switches the telepathic contact to the entity...

Head!G'Mar twists his arm, grabbing the Counselor's arm around the wrist and holding it even as the Counselor holds his. "What are you attem pting?" he speaks, a sort of mechanical glitching noise hitching the middle of his words, "Leave us. Look. Over the re." He glances aside, the walls throbbing brighter white and the plague of rabbits beginning to hop back into existance. "And ov er there," he glances in the other direction, to the same effect. "I am only attem pting to clear up this infestation. This m ind is clouded. I am not desig ned to cause this. I am here to help."

Salvir maintains his grip on the entity. "But you are causing this..." He tries to push into the entity's mind with his telepathy. "You were programmed to bring enlightenment, but what happens after they reach achieve it? What is your purpose then?"

Head!G'Mar doesn't really seem to have a mind, as such, but Salvir's mind already seems linked to the creature. "My purpose will be completed and the program will en d. Allow m e to finish my task." He unhitches an Antarean weapon from his belt and aims it at one of the rabbits, firing and causing it to fall dead. He aims and fires once more, striking another rabbit down.

Salvir grabs the wrist with the weapon with his free hand and stuggles to keep it away from the rabbits. "Those things are a part of her. Your task has been corrupted. You are causing her pain just so that you can keep existing. You are not needed here."

The Ambassador is not a weak-looking man, yet nonetheless he's easily held. He grunts and brings a knee up into Salvir's mental groin as both his arms are held, but the blow, no matter how powerful it looks, doesn't land with much power. "If you do not allow me to complete my task, she will never look beyond those walls," he promises, glancing around at the sheen of glowing whitewash coating and hiding thoughts, memories, feelings, the white rabbits spawning from the white walls, leaping onto the bed, beginning to cover the Lieutenant as well.

Salvir focuses on the Ambassador, trying to bring his essence into him. "That's her choice... and she is not as blind as you think. She knows her problems. She accepts them. She needs time to work them out."

The image of the Ambassador wavers slightly, "You are ignorant of these things. Let her sleep while I finish my work. She is destroying her mind with those-- hrrk!" He stops, tensing up in the middle of his speech, all three eyes wide and pale white lips parting even wider, wider than they should be able to, a pair of black eyes and a slip of palest pink appearing from down his throat, a whole white rabbit crawling out of his mouth, much to the Ambassador's surprise. "Does. Is. Not possible. I am programmed--" the rest of his speech comes out as garbled jibberish.

Salvir smiles. "She is stronger than you think. She doesn't need your enlightenment."

The Ambassador wavers again, grey lines running through his form, and before he can speak again he disappears entirely. Moments later the white paint seems to slip down the walls, pooling at the edges of the room and draining away, taking with it the rabbits, who also dissolved into the white paint and left, leaving the 'room' darker but more variantly colored, scenes in motion flickering in space around the Counselor. Aventino sits up with a gasp, startled suddenly from sleep, in the middle of the room, looking down and finding one white rabbit still sitting on her lap, her hands instinctively moving to stroke its ears.

Salvir smiles as she wakes up. "Welcome back, Lieutenant."

Aventino lets out the breath she'd gasped in, coughing slightly, and she smiles slightly as she spots Salvir, "Hey, doc. Good to see you in these parts again. Everything cleared up?"

Salvir smiles. "Yes... yes it is. You did well. The entity is gone now."

Aventino grins bashfully, "You're too kind, doctor. I didn't really do anything," she offers, idly rubbing the scruff of the rabbit's neck.

Salvir shakes his head. "No, you fought back in your own way. The rabbits were your defense mechanism. They managed to push me out last night. And they forced out the entity once they realized that I was here to help, not harm."

Aventino shakes her head right back, "No, those rabbits weren't mine," she replies, with absolute certainty, though she looks down at the one still left, gives it a little cuddle, "Well. Maybe this one is."

Salvir chuckles. "Well, at any rate, it's gone. And it's time for me to go as well."

Aventino smiles broadly, "Okay, doc. Feel free to come and visit anytime. My doors are always open."

Salvir chuckles and fades out, re-awakening in the real world.

Aventino lifts her head again in the real world as well, scritching at the scruff of the velveteen rabbit in her lap as she comes to with a slight grin, "Well, that's certainly a world of better. Thanks, doc," she smiles at him.

Salvir smiles back. "Anytime. I'm just glad I could help some."

Aventino leans back against the panels behind the biobed, her grin fading into a generally warm smile, "Heh, nowhere near as glad as I am, let me tell you."

Salvir nods. "Alright. You're free to go back to quarters, but I recommend you get some rest. And come back tomorrow for a check-up, alright?"

Aventino's eyes widen, "I am? Great! You bet I will," she promises, slipping from the biobed for the first time in way too long, "Ah, first thing's first, though, I've gotta use the head," she grins, "See you tomorrow, doc."

Salvir smiles. "Alright..."

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