Part 5

The blur of colored uniforms transformed into four security guards grappling with one struggling Maquis prisoner. For such a slight young man, Gerron was managing to retain a lot of mobility while being gripped by four much larger men who seemed to be trying to hold him in place.

It looked to Harry like there was an electrical current running from the hands of the security guards holding Gerron's right side to the grip the other two had on his left side, sending Gerron into writhing fits.

It seemed to be a quiet eternity of just watching Gerron struggle. Harry wasn't quite sure what to do, even as he began moving towards the five to help. He knew he wouldn't exactly be much help, considering Gerron wasn't even staying still enough for him get a secure hold.

Time had stilled before Harry's eyes, and now it jumped back into motion, broken by the sharp feminine gasp from behind Harry. Seconds later, Gerron jerked free, breaking away from the security guards and practically flying past Harry. He forcefully brushed Harry's shoulder in either his haste to get away from the security guards or from some perception of Harry as a threat. Whatever Gerron's intention, the blow succeeded in knocking Harry off balance.

His recently healed leg did not take kindly to the shove, refusing to bend on cue and sending Harry toppling to the floor. One of the security guards nearly stomped on his hand as the four rushed after Gerron. Harry pulled his arm back from where the boot sole landed only a second before it would have been too late.

Forcing his stiff knee to bend, Harry pulled himself up, wincing at having made yet another impact with the ground in so short a time.

The four security guards had formed a semi-circle around Gerron, but had not yet seized him.

As he got to his feet completely, Harry saw why.

Standing beside Gerron, in a distinctively defensive and aggressive posture, was Samantha Wildman. Gerron was half-clinging to her, bright fearful eyes darting from each of the men surrounding them. Harry saw now, for the first time, why Gerron had been brought to Sickbay in the first place. Before, he hadn't been still long enough for Harry to discern anything to be wrong with him.

Now, Harry could see a distinct layer of sickly sweat over Gerron's paler than usual skin, and it didn't seem to all have been produced by exertion. There was a very large developing bruise running from his chin to his temple on the left side of Gerron's skull, accompanied by a fresh, bleeding gash on his forehead. . There wasn't anything observably wrong on Gerron's torso, but he was hunched over, the one arm that wasn't frantically clutching Sam Wildman wrapped protectively around his stomach.

Gerron suddenly looked very young. He *was* young, Harry knew that. But he had never seen Gerron when he wasn't skulking around looking like he had unpleasant intentions, not desperate and fearful like this.

And he certainly didn't look like enough of a threat to require the presence of the four hulking security guards.

Sam, looking somewhere between shocked and angry, with her formerly gray face rapidly flushing, was barking orders at the security guards to get the hell away from her patient.

The security guards were slowly backing away, protesting that their orders from Tuvok were to stay with him.

Sickbay had been deathly quiet before the five new arrivals entered; now it was almost deafening.

Somehow, over the din of Sam screaming and the security guards screaming right back, Harry managed to make his voice heard.


Three of the four security guards turned to look at him; two drawing their weapons from their belts as if he was some kind of threat.

Sam glanced at him momentarily, not having any more time because that was the instant Gerron chose to pass out. She rushed to re-position her arms to catch him as he collapsed. Harry had no idea where she got the strength to both catch Gerron and then hoist him smoothly on to the bio-bed that Harry had recently vacated. Gerron wasn't that big, but was definitely bigger and heavier than Sam. The strength apparently came from the same place the rage that was on her face did.

It was probably a combination of the two that allowed her to forcefully shove the fourth security guard away, as he began approaching the bio-bed perimeter. Harry didn't think that she actually caused the guard to stumble backwards, considering that he probably outweighed her by two hundred pounds of muscle and was nearly two feet taller.

All the same, he backed up, indicating to his three companions that their duty could more or less be accomplished from fifteen feet away, now that their prisoner was unconscious.

"Harry," called Sam.

She was quickly activating various equipment, face still crimson with fury.

"I need your help. Grab that medical tray next to you."

Harry picked it up, walking quickly past the security guards to deliver it to her. He felt uncomfortable kinks in his leg snap as he moved. As he extended it towards her, she didn't look up, hunched over the medical console. Her hands darted rapidly over the keys and the medical arch rose from the sides of Gerron's bio-bed to close over him.

"Hand me the neural-"

She glanced at him, seeing the clueless expression fall over his features before she even finished the name of the instrument.

"End of the tray, Harry. Little square things that go on your forehead."

Feeling ashamed of his medical ignorance, even though Sam didn't seem to care, Harry picked the small instrument and pressed it into her hand. Sam quickly centered it on Gerron's forehead, making a small sound of concern as she noticed the cut right beside it for the first time.

Sam returned to the console, and Harry stood beside her. The medical scanner began to scroll information down the screen at an unbelievably quick rate. It was a blur to Harry; not that he could understand it any way.

Sam, however, understood it perfectly.

"Broken.... punctured... lacerated... concussed...!"

Sam turned, mouth agape, cheeks flushed blood red and eyes blazing, to the security guards.

"Just what the hell were you trying to do? Kill him!?" She spat the accusations with fury.

The one who she had shoved responded, seemingly barely affected by her reaction.

"He resisted," he said, calmly.

"Did he?" Sam mocked as her eyes slid into slits and darted sideways.

It was apparent to Harry that she was contemplating saying something else but was holding her tongue. She apparently decided against it, physically turning away from the men.

"Get out of Sickbay," she commanded coldly, pulling a regenerator off of the tray Harry was still holding and leaning over Gerron.

"We have orders to stay with him," stated the same insolent guard.

"You have new orders," Sam snarled, without looking up. "From the Acting Chief Medical Officer, who outranks you all. She says get the hell out of her Sickbay before she reports you to Tuvok for brutality."

It took a very short amount of time for the four men to consider her words.

"We'll be outside," the only vocal one of the four told Harry, choosing to not look at Sam.

"Just get out," Sam ordered.

The four quickly retreated out the door.

The door slid quietly shut, almost drowned out entirely by the loud, emotion-filled sigh produced by Sam.

"Thanks, Harry. You can just put the tray down on the instrument table right there," Sam said, quite pleasantly if hurried, in stark contrast to the harsh voice she'd been using for the past ten minutes.

"And Harry, once you get to my quarters could you comm Tuvok and tell him that I would like to see all the injured Maquis? Somehow, I think the brig guards are only bringing in the ones who are at risk of bleeding to death internally."

The harsh tone began to creep back into Sam's voice.

"Sure, Sam. I'll tell him."

"Thank you. And don't forget to go to sleep."

"I won't," Harry promised.

He exited, awkwardly stepping around the four security guards crowding around the other side of the door.

"We had to end up with the Maquis whore as the only Doctor, huh," the same dolt commented casually as Harry walked by.

Harry didn't answer.

He found himself troubled.

The four faces of Samantha Wildman flashed before his eyes in rapid secession. She'd been exhausted, slow in movement and pale in complexion, when he'd first walked in. There'd been a little anger when she talked about the stress she was under, but she'd remained with an almost gray complexion. When he'd brought up Ken Dalby-which he now knew not to do-she'd turned into an anxious, distant and disconnected person, who wouldn't make eye contact. And when Gerron had clung to her, there had been full-blown rage, with her cheeks inflamed and eyes blasting. Rage that had faded into medical competency and blood that had drained from her face.

Harry wasn't sure what to think. She was obviously hurting, at the loss of Dalby and by the destruction of Voyager's peaceful life. Before arriving in Sickbay himself, he'd heard some concerns from other crewmembers who returning from visiting the injured, that the only doctor on board was the lover of one of the people who had inflicted so much damage to Voyager. He couldn't, however, associate Sam with any kind of destruction. He couldn't see her supporting the Maquis, even if half of them were gone. She felt betrayed, he was sure. He couldn't believe she was feeling anything else, even if Gerron ran to her like she wasn't wearing a Starfleet uniform.

Part 6 | Index page