Part 23

It was really amazing that despite having been searched and scanned multiple times, one of the Maquis in B'Elanna's cell immediately produced a sharp blade upon the request for suggestions on how to inflict some minor injury requiring a trip to Sickbay.

Staying perfectly still while Ayala prepared to slash a shallow gash into her arm was the only real challenge. The cut was supposed to bleed enough to alarm the Brig guards, while causing minimal pain and not impairing her movement. The urge to defend herself was very hard to suppress. Still, she extended her arm and rolled up her sleeve. The other Maquis in the cell took the cue to start moving around the cell confines. Crouched in the back, with the others moving in front of them, they were completely obscured from the view of the Brig guards.

Ayala drew back his arm, the blade positioned above her arm where there were enough small veins near the surface of skin to bleed like a much deeper cut would.


The Maquis who had been blocking O'Donnell's view moved reluctantly to the sides of the cell. Ayala surreptitiously dropped his arm and the blade behind his back. B'Elanna rose, forcing a look of innocence on to her face.


"Wildman wants you in Sickbay."

This was an interesting. And exactly what she wanted, but without being stabbed in the process.

"Okay." Not that he was asking her permission.

Ayala slipped the blade in her hand and B'Elanna tucked it into her waistband only moments before she felt the tingling transporter beam envelop her.

The normal disorientation that accompanied transporting was broken by the sharp blasting sound of an alarm. B'Elanna turned her head towards the deafening noise.

Wildman was straddling Gerron's prone body, a medical instrument in hand. The alarm was coming from a nearby monitor. Wildman whipped her head around, face desperate.

"Torres, I know you got rid of the EMH. I need him back, now!"

She didn't even have a chance to deny it.

"Listen to me," Wildman yelled. "Gerron is having multiple aortic seizures. I don't know how to fix that."

B'Elanna still hadn't moved, frozen in place.

"Without the EMH," Wildman continued. "He's going to die."

That simple three-letter word got B'Elanna moving. She climbed onto the bio-bed under the Jefferies Tube opening. She forced open the hatch and started to pull herself through. Right before her head passed through the hatch, she heard another alarm explode into sound below her.

She crawled through the Jefferies Tube, her mind flashing back to the last time she'd been here. The Jefferies Tube had been much more difficult to navigate when it wouldn't stop spinning. B'Elanna could crawl much faster now, and could only hope that Gerron could hold on long enough for her to undo what she had done to the EMH.

She found the panel over the controls. She'd ripped it off without a lot of care the last time, and apparently broken the closing device in the process, although she didn't remember doing it. Some idiot-some Starfleet idiot-had fixed it. Very quickly and without much intelligence.

It looked like it had been welded shut, but only along the top and half of one of the sides.

Badly done and stupid.

B'Elanna stuck her fingers inside the edge that wasn't welded down, grasped the panel and pried upwards as hard as she could.

The panel came loose, colliding with ceiling with an echoing clang.

B'Elanna reached inside, fingers frantically flying over the controls.

It was miracle the moron who had repaired the panel hadn't messed with the components inside.

But they hadn't, so seconds later B'Elanna was able to retrieve the EMH from his storage spot in the system code for the medical lesson on alien physiology.

She crawled back to the hatch and peered down.

The EMH was standing by Wildman, looking at the monitors.

The EMH could save Gerron. And B'Elanna had suddenly been given free access to the ship. She backed away from the hatch, crawling toward the Jefferies Tube that connected to the ladder to the next deck.

This was a hell of a lot better than intimidating Wildman into giving her limited access to the computer.

This was freedom.

Below the Jefferies Tube that B'Elanna was crawling through, stood the EMH and Ensign Samantha Wildman.

"Please state the nature of the medical emergency." Came out of the Doctor's mouth as he was activated.

"Hi, Doc," Ensign Wildman said. "It's good to have you back."

She reached over to the two monitors that were loudly warning of cardiac arrest and imminent brain death, and quietly turned them off.

"All this," she said humorlessly, "is now yours."

With out another word, she turned away, walked to the door and exited, ignoring the fact that he was calling her name.

"Ensign Wildman!"

The doors slid shut behind her, leaving the Doctor standing stunned besides a patient who was definitely not about to enter cardiac arrest or brain death and was apparently only sedated.

He stood in the same place as he'd been activated in.

"Who won?" he asked.

Part 24 | Index page