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There is a fungus among us

Posted on Sat Sep 19th, 2020 @ 12:32am by Commander Jey Cleh & Commander Liana & Commander Eliana Masters

Mission: Tales from the Frontier
Location: Starbase 80 - Sickbay
Timeline: Three years ago...

For the last hour, Lizzy had laid on the surgical bed in one of the private rooms in Sickbay, while the EMH, and a nurse performed emergency surgery to save her life.

As she finally came around, she saw the room was quiet, and the lights were dimmed. Turning her head to look around, she saw Liana facing away from her, arranging medications on a nearby table.

"Jeh!" The voice came from the other side of the room, and as Lizzy turned her head the other way, she saw John's daughter Samantha moving to stand beside her.

"Hey kiddo." Lizzy managed tiredly, as she gave the young girl a smile.

"Welcome back to the land of the living, Captain." Liana said as she stepped into view. "How do you feel?"

"Like I spent the better part of a day getting shot by paint balls." Lizzy groaned as she sat herself up.

"Your injuries were pretty severe." Liana said, reaching to help Jeh to sit up on the bed. "I've healed your wounds, but you may be a little sore for the next few days." She stood back, using her Tricorder to scan the Captain. Satisfied with the results of the scan, Liana closed the tricorder. "Would you like something for the pain?"

"Yeah." Lizzy said, and as Liana left to get her medication, her attention was drawn to the person who walked in at the same time.

"Hello captain, I'm sorry if I'm intruding. Should I come back?" The man stood a respectful distance away from the foot of the bed, looking as if he were trying to judge whether or not he had mistimed his entrance.

Lizzy didn't say a word, but just waved the man in just before easing herself off the bed, and onto her feet.

"The attending nurse said you had regained consciousness. She did not state how recently, I apologize. Allow me to introduce myself. My name is Ryan Walker, and I work for FoxCorp Investigations," he flashed his identification which was decidedly not Starfleet. "My company is sub-contracted to help with these sorts of things. I've been asked to help with the investigation. Perhaps you met a curt individual that goes by Galloway?"

"He's blunt, and to the point." Lizzy said. She reached over, picking up her Tricorder, and her gun holster, putting them back on. She picked up her gun off the table, glancing at him as she checked it. "His manners could use a little work."

"Well," Walker continued, "not that we investigators are prone to the sort of good cop bad cop routine, but I'm the nicer, more polite version. Anyway, I had some follow up questions that he was unable to ask due to your medical condition at the time. Are you feeling up to a little conversation?"

"I don't know." Lizzy teased, then looked at Liana who had walked in to hear the question. "What do you think, Commander?"

"You should be well enough to return to light duty." Liana said seriously. She handed the Captain a hypospray. "This is for pain. Use it twice a day for the next three days."

"Thanks." Lizzy said, then turned to Ryan. "I'm all yours, Mr. Walker."

Through out this scene, Samantha had remained silent, but was always within arms reach of Jeh, and quite weary of this stranger.

"Ms. Deban," Walker had recognized the cautious body language and did his best to project a calm demeanor as he addressed the young girl. "I'm very sorry about what happened to your father. I promise you that I'm going to figure out why this happened, okay? You've already helped my colleagues out with your observation skills. Thank you."

"You're welcome." Was Sam's only reply as she continued to stand there looking at him.

"Right then, if you'll excuse my stream of consciousness, I'm just going to talk my way through this for a moment," Ryan began. "This whole investigating business really does boil down to the five Ws. Who? What? When? Where? Why? So far, we know where, we know who was involved, we know what happened, and we know when it happened. The investigation, therefore, must boil down to the why, wouldn't you agree?"

Walker paused for a moment as he read through the dossier on John Deban. He knew that part of the job description was to investigate every angle, but the early signs pointed to a premeditated act. A random killer simply would not risk such a personal method of attack as stabbing another person without some serious motivation.

"Captain, tell me what you can about John Deban."

Not a whole lot to tell really." Lizzy replied. She was trying to remember what her sister had said about John in her log entries, and decided to tell him what she could. "I met him while I was at the Academy, and he was working as a construction contractor for Starfleet at the time. After I left the Academy, I hadn't seen him again, until I came here... I can't really give you anything from the last 10 or so years, but what I can tell you is that he was in trouble." Lizzy picked up a nearby PADD, tapping in a few commands to bring up a copy of the message she'd received earlier that evening, then handing it over. "I found this message waiting for me, when I got off duty."

"Interesting," Walker kept a neutral expression as he took the PADD and glanced through the contents. Clearly, Mr. Deban had known that something foul was afoot and had messaged an old friend from the Academy to help him. Captain Cleh held a position of power and authority on the station, one that Deban was hoping was enough to change his fate. Yet something wasn't adding up in Walker's mind. Why did John Deban reach out to someone he hadn't talked to in over a decade?

"Clearly, he knew something was amiss," Walker kept his dilemma-inducing line of questioning to himself for the time being. "Did he ever happen to mention what kind of trouble he was in? I'm trying to figure out where an Orion assassin enters our story."

Listening to the conversation, Samantha realized that the green man who had killed her father must have been an Orion... whatever that was. "He found out their secret." She said timidly. "I know it too."

"Secret?" Lizzy asked as she carefully knelt down in front of Samantha, wincing a bit from the pain she was still in. "Sam, what are you talking about?"

"There is an Orion spy on the station." Samantha replied, looking at Lizzy.

Walker didn't react immediately. One side of his mind wanted to dismiss the statement as a conclusion lept to by a young girl's traumatized mind. Yet, she had proven that she had an attention to detail that had already benefited the case greatly. One found out after years of investigative work that the best thing to do in many situations was to sit and wait.

Lizzy hesitated for a moment, unsure how she should handle the situation. On one hand, it was obvious now that John had been onto her, even if he didn't know it was her. On the other hand, it was obvious no one knew it was her, and she had left no evidence that would lead them to her.

"Intruder alert!" Lizzy finally said, and the computer bathed the room in red lights, sounding the alert klaxon. She tapped her COMM badge. "Cleh to security. Lock down all transporters, docking bays, airlocks, and ports. Until further notice, no one is allowed to arrive, or leave the station without my explicit authorization."

=A= "Aye sir. Security is responding." =A= came the reply.

"Should I come back? Perhaps now is not the best time," Walker reasoned. It was obvious which side of his own internal conflict that Cleh had taken when it came to Samantha's testimony. He still had his own decisions to make, but perhaps he needed to rethink some of the assumptions that he had been operating under.

"No." Lizzy replied, as she pressed her hypo to her own arm, and eased herself back to her feet. "If you have more questions, go ahead and ask, but If you don't mind, I'd like you to work with station security. It's a Starfleet matter now, but you've already got more information than we do."

"We've worked with them before, so that shouldn't be a problem," Walked nodded. "I'm looking forward to ruffling Galloway's feathers some more at any rate. You've done enough to help us, thank you. Certainly have a lot of information to process and piece together. For now, let's see if we can't turn up this spy."

"Good idea." Lizzy replied. She sighed lightly as she looked down at Samantha. She understood what it was like to lose a parent, and knew how hard the road ahead would be. "You, young lady, are coming with me, because I'm not letting you out of my sight."

Sam gave Jeh a smile, nodding her head. "Yes, Sir." She said enthusiastically.

Walker paused for a moment as he saw the interaction between the other two people in the room. Perhaps he was lost in a memory for a brief second, inconvenienced with the unshakable feeling of deja vu. Whatever the case, he remained motionless for a short time, and only the captain's words stirred him back to life.

Lizzy looked at Walker, gesturing towards the room's exit. "After you."

"Uh, yeah, right. Off we go. Not going to discover a mole slash spy slash whatever we wanna call it by standing around, right?" Quickly gathering himself, Walker continued out of the door, already mulling through several talking points that he would no doubt bring up the next time he met with Galloway.

Ryan Walker
FoxCorp Investigations
Written by Masters

Commander Liana
Starbase 80


Samantha Deban

both played by
Commander Jeh Cleh
Executive Officer
Starbase 80


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