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Author - Distracted | Genre - Challenge: Sincerest Form of Flattery | Genre - Drama | P | Rating - PG-13
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The Sincerest Form of Flattery Challenge
Once a day for three weeks now I had witnessed her response to the drug I was injecting into her bloodstream in a gradually reducing dosage, attempting to stave off the disabling withdrawal symptoms which would have rendered her non-functional for several days, an option which, although more expeditious than the gradual and torturous means she had chosen to wean herself from her addiction, was not feasible during this time of crisis. Commander Tucker was virtually rebuilding the ship from the hull inward in many areas. Lieutenant Reed was fully occupied with overseeing repairs on the weapons systems, and the captain was… unavailable. I wasn’t ready quite yet to declare him dead. His replacement was less than exemplary in her performance at present, but she was all we had for the time being. I found myself each day struggling with the desire to pronounce her unfit for command. She certainly wasn’t functioning at her best.
Each time I considered it, Commander Tucker’s haggard face came to mind. Dared I place a further burden upon him? I knew without a doubt that ship’s repairs were behind schedule. Supplies were scarce. The repair crews were on their last legs, and Tucker was expending twice the effort of any of them. There was no question that if I chose to declare Subcommander T’Pol unfit for command that Commander Tucker would step into the breach. I was equally certain that he would be willing to kill himself in the process. I had already thrown away my ethical principles once to keep the man alive. I certainly had no intention of allowing him to work himself to death.
And so I struggled daily with my conscience, repeatedly vowing to address the issue with the Vulcan and force her to remove herself from duty for a few days only, long enough to allow the drug to leave her system completely and for her to suffer through withdrawal, and thus return to her usual state of health. I refrained for two reasons only. Her cool composure for fully ninety percent of the day on her current treatment regimen reassured me that she was still quite capable of command. I remained also somewhat in awe of her spectacular intelligence and admiring of her capabilities, even in her current condition. I sighed in unconscious imitation of my patient. She opened her eyes. Her hands were steady.
“Was that the seven percent solution?” she asked calmly.
“Yes,” I responded curtly. I replaced the hypospray unit into its case. “We’ll begin the six percent tomorrow,” I told her. She nodded. Then she moved to hand me the padd she’d brought with her.
“I’ve investigated the discrepancy you discovered in your genetic sample library, Doctor. It seems to be a simple computer input error. I see no hard evidence that anything is actually missing…” She paused, staring at the screen as I reached for the padd, pausing just short of relinquishing it. Her expression was overtly puzzled. In the first few moments following her injections, her mannerisms had been uncannily human-like of late.
“Is there something wrong, Subcommander?” I asked.
She stuck her tongue firmly into one cheek and studied the padd with great concentration. “I had this feeling yesterday, Doctor… following my last injection. I’m missing something. I can’t quite grasp it. I think it’s the trellium. I’ve read of the concept of intuition. Perhaps with the help of the drug, my mind is functioning more like the mind of the person who pilfered your samples…”
I gave her a perplexed look. “You just told me that nothing had been taken. Which is it?”
She squinted at the screen, obviously frustrated. She focused intently for several moments. Finally, she released a held breath explosively with a heartfelt “Kroykah!” whispered under her breath. I gazed back at her in amused surprise. She handed the padd to me finally, with a resigned shake of her head and a sheepish look.
“There’s nothing there. I’m imagining things. Your genetic samples are intact, Doctor. The computer confirms it,” she replied wearily.
I gave her a relieved smile. Admitting one’s weaknesses is the first step to recovery.
“Thank you for investigating the problem so promptly, Subcommander. I know that you have many other duties to attend to. I’ll see you tomorrow at the usual time,” I told her reassuringly.
She nodded regally, now the perfect picture of serene Vulcan control. She rose from the treatment table and exited Sickbay. I examined the data on the padd she’d given me. All seemed in perfect order, so I put the padd away and went to feed my menagerie.
If you want to know which author Distracted was imitating, check out the "Sincerest Form of Flattery" Challenge: Author List
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One person has made comments
Nice one. Very precise.
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