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Part of USS Daedalus: Mission 1 – Measure by Measure and USS Mackenzie: Mission 12: Measure by Measure

DMBM 014 – The Scars We Wear

USS Daedalus
7.17.2401
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“She’s going to need time, Will.”  Captain Leopold Halsey sat in his office with William Prentice opposite him.  The Mackenzie had met up with them and transferred Sadie Fowler.  She was now resting in an intensive care biobed on the other side of the sickbay.  “You’re going to have to be more of a support than you’ve ever been…making sure she follows the treatment plan, does her follow-ups, and sees the counselor.”  He handed over a PADD, “I’ve got a prelim schedule worked out.”

Prentice held it tightly in his hands, his emotions still a flurry of florid emotions.  “She’s still out there, Doc.  She’s…that woman is still out there.  Why did we let her go?”  His heart was racing as he attempted to control his breathing.

Halsey stood, grabbed a chair from against the wall, sitting beside him.  He sat there, sharing the space with the young helm officer.  He picked at the right words in his head before replying, “I did it this way with another young man in my old command.  A counselor, which made it that more interesting.”  He let out a long sigh, “You’re not going to like what I have to tell you, Will.”

Prentice had balled his hands into fists.  “I know.”  He seethed as his breathing slowed, and the burning sensation in his gut faded in time.  Soon, he released his hands into open palms, “We had to trade for Sadie.  Without it…she would have killed her.”  He leaned back, his eyes wet with grief and rage, “Why does it have to be so hard?”

Leo noted, “Emotions?”  Will nodded as he stared at the ceiling, contemplating everything and nothing.  The doctor smiled, “I had a Vulcan first officer.  Commander Sorek.  Brilliant.  Logical and focused in every way.  I envied him at times…many of the times when my emotions or feelings were starting to get in the way.”  He explained, “When you study how much work it takes to do what the Vulcans do, and what they go through every so often to maintain control…it’s not easy for them either.  Study any of the alien species we’ve connected with and brought into the Federation…emotion doesn’t go away the farther you go from Earth…it is one of few truths left in the universe across all of us.”  He turned to the young officer, “It’s hard because it was designed that way.  You can debate the higher religious teachings of everybody and anybody…but you can’t deny the presence and power of feelings in our lives.  The universe was designed to feel.”

Prentice felt the words soothe the rage-filled burns that had scalded his heart.  He breathed in and out for five minutes as Halsey watched, observing but saying nothing.  He felt himself returning to himself.  A wry smile filled his lips, “What about the Borg, Captain.”

Halsey chuckled at the officer’s return to humor, “I didn’t say my theory was perfect.”  He stood from the chair, “Did it help?”  Prentice nodded, and the doctor replied, “I’m going to have you visit with Milty and his team for a couple of days before I put you back at the wheel.  What you felt…that’s not gone away with a wave of my hands.  It’s gonna stick with you…and our job is to help you know how to get unstuck.  Fair?”

“Fair, sir.”

“Good.  Go and sit with your girlfriend.  She could use a friendly face when she wakes up.”

After he left, Halsey returned to his desk.  He hadn’t spoken to Sorek or Choi recently.  He made a note to change that.