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Who needs sleep anyway

Posted on Saturday, 5 February 2022 - 2:48pm by Lieutenant Ryan Rose MD & Lieutenant JG Ethan Connelly

Mission: Operation: Crimson Kaleidoscope
Location: Science Department
Timeline: Prior to departure from Vulcan

Simulations, a seemingly incoherent array of research papers from a wide assortment from scientists both within the Federation and beyond, short hand notations - some underlined and some followed by a long string of question marks - and partially translated Vulcan medical texts…

Ethan Connelly paused to replicate a fresh cup of tea and a cereal bar before settling back down. He had somewhat fell down a rabbit hole. Trying to decipher someone else’s thinking was something of an impossible task most of the time. All he could say for sure was that these files did relate to Ithena Syndrome.

His Vulcan was in need of some work but he could understand enough of what he saw. Besides, he could read the translated sections. He wasn’t entirely sure what the connection was to nanotechnology or a paper published by a Romulan scientist. Which was actually just one among many.

“Did you never sleep?” He accused, his question lingering in the empty room.

He was loathed to add to their Chief Medical Officer’s workload but he needed his expertise. Maybe more than anyone on the ship could provide. But he didn’t want to do that unless he had no choice.

Sending a message he asked if Dr Rose could contact him when he had some time, adding that it was related to Commander Soral’s condition. That done he headed towards the workstation in the corner so he could instead spend hours trying to decipher how they could follow the shuttle wherever it had gone. At least that was more in his wheelhouse.

He almost jumped out of his skin when an unfamiliar voice filled the room, spinning around he saw nobody - yet he realised the computer was playing the next file. Some kind of audio file.

“… translated documents are massive, as thorough as you’d expect of Vulcan’s. I can’t be sure, since Soral is being so insanely secretive and stubborn but the symptoms I know about match a small number of neurological conditions. And of course, Soral has mixed heritage so it makes me lean towards Ithena Syndrome. But it could be about six other things. Yet apparently they share similar characteristics so, theoretically should have similar treatment protocols.

Of them all, only Ithena Syndrome is still being reported amongst children of Romulan and Vulcan parents. And rates are increasing. Which makes me worry for Soral’s children. There is no cure, although reports state the progression of the symptoms is faster amongst individuals who have no bond and their specific genetic makeup.

Vulcan bonds are… amazing. Even being married to Soral, I cannot wrap my head around how much strength it gives them. I wish I didn’t know how much it could hurt them.

So, the symptoms. They seem to stem from a neurological degradation which even the Vulcan’s have been unable to correct. I’m not going to question Vulcan’s methods and assume they have exhausted normal medicinal treatments and protocols. So maybe we need to look at it from a different angle. If there is no treatment in nature - we create one. I just need to figure out the how.”

“Computer, pause,” Ethan called out. He sat in silence, considering what he had just heard. So, this is what Lieutenant Kingsley sounded like. He could hear the youth, but more than that. A determination and focus.

“Computer, how many audio files are in this subfolder?”

A pause. “Six.”

Climbing to his feet, Ethan swapped out his tea for a strong coffee. “Alright, play them in chronological order. I guess the Lieutenant and I are gonna pull an all nighter.”

As he took his first gulp of scolding hot coffee, the voice of Alexandra Kingsley filled the room.

(Short time later)

=^= Lieutenant Connelly? =^= Ryan asked, tapping his combadge. "Sorry it took so long to get back to you. What can I do for you?"

The voice coming through woke Ethan with a start and he cursed under his breath as his coffee cup clattered to the floor. It took his brain a second to recognise the voice and recall the message he had sent earlier. “Doctor Rose! Yes…. Yes, thanks… I was hoping I could borrow your medical expertise? Are you able to come to the lab? I’ve found some of Lieutenant Kingsley’s research and may make more sense to you than I.”

"Of course. I'll be right there. Was that a broken coffee cup I heard? I'll bring a fresh pot." He added with a smile in his tone.

“You heard right,” Ethan confirmed, impressed. “I’ll see you soon.”

As the comm link ended, Ethan cleaned up the mess and then tried to get the files in order. He had started to get the idea Alex Kingsley had come up with, he just wasn’t sure how possible it was. When he heard the door open he smiled, waving Dr Rose inside. “Welcome, Doctor. Please, grab a seat.”

As promised, Ryan entered with a pot of coffee, and two empty mugs. He placed all three down and poured 2 mugs of coffee. "Alright, that's settled." He took his own mug and took a sip. "So what can I do for you?"

Letting the doctor settle, Ethan activated the holographic display around the central workstation. “Just to be clear, only I have seen these files,” he offered. “While Commander Soral announced his condition, I don’t think there is a need to broadcast it on all frequencies, so to speak.

In summary, Lieutenant Kingsley seems to have been concerned the Commander was suffering ill health as she’s done some research, even got her hands on some historical medical records and journals from Vulcan. Ithena Syndrome was her most likely conclusion after she acquired a sample and ran some sequencing. I’ll leave that under the heading wife’s prerogative I guess.

In short it is a neurological condition but is more common to Romulans. And it presents typically during the onset of Pon Farr, which makes it almost impossible to detect given the number of physiological changes happening at the time,” Connelly went on. “It is degenerative, and while some treatments - or ideally the presence of a bond - can subdue the symptoms there is no outright cure.”

He paused, calling up another file. “The Lieutenant seemed to be thinking along the lines of an artificial cure. Namely nanoprobes. Of the Borg variety.”

"That's an incredibly dangerous way to go about it. I know the Vulcans and Romulans can be incredibly secretive, especially in regards to any potential weakness, physical or mental. I'd rather see him treated on Vulcan, or atleast find a Vulcan healer who might be willing to help. Dr Selin perhaps."

“You mentioned that name in the briefing,” Ethan recalled. “And I’m happy to take your steer on this. While Lieutenant Kingsley has quite the reputation when it comes to this kind of thing, my head has always been a bit more stuck in the clouds and all things astrophysics. And the research isn’t complete, it’s still hypothetical although it may have merit but I’m sure as hell not qualified to say so. Not to mention nanotechnology can be somewhat temperamental.”

He took a long drink of the coffee, smiling, “that is some good coffee, Doctor, thank you.”

"You're welcome." Ryan automatically replied. "Yes, nanotechnology has a whole host of issues. I avoid it if at all possible. I recommended Doctor Selin because she's far better with Vulcan physiology than I am, and she's familiar with Soral. I'll see if I can track her down."

“I’d appreciate that. I can compress this data and send it to - you can share it at your discretion,” Ethan explained. “Hopefully it can be of some help to the Commander.”

Taking another sip of coffee, he eyed the doctor, “if you don’t mind me asking, have you been on the ship long? I get a feeling a lot of people aboard are close, although our chief engineer seems very… outspoken.”

Ryan gave a rather wistful smile. "Yes, quite awhile, though I'm leaving shortly." He nodded towards the man's console "I would appreciate the data, it certainly can't hurt."

“You are?!” Ethan replied, surprised. “Reassignment?”

"No. Sabbatical slash very long honeymoon. But I'm sure my replacement will be very well suited for the position." Ryan replied.

“Honeymoon? Wow. Congratulations!” Ethan smiled warmly. “I get the feeling you will be badly missed but I hope it all goes well, Doctor.”

"Well thank you for that. I'll make sure my replacement is apprised of what's going on with Soral." Ryan smiled politely. "Anything else?"

“I guess all I can say is… more coffee?”


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