SIM:Lael Rosek - In So Many Words, Part III.5 (Victory)

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"In So Many Words, Part III"
Lieutenant Junior Grade Lael Rosek
Operations Officer
Starbase 118
USS Victory NCC 362447
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"In So Many Words, Part IV"
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((USS Victory - Deck 5 - Counseling))

((Tarna))

Tarna: We were held in pretty secure conditions but eventually got our chance when we were put on that ship where we were found. The made the mistake of giving us replicator access. It was restricted but I still managed to get a weapon in the form of a steak knife.

((Rosek))

Rosek: ::sombers:: ::gaze drops to her hands:: We only tried once. I only knew part of what Janel went through. He didn't talk about it much except the little bit that I forced out of him. ::pauses:: He started acting...off.

Kaji: ::tilting her head curiously:: What do you mean, “off”?

Rosek: ::pauses:: It's hard to explain. Erratic, I guess? He didn't seem to be thinking things through entirely. ::pauses:: I guess that was the serum.

:: Kaji thought it more likely a result of the early head trauma, the serum had been in his system for a while and wouldn’t have done more than magnify his reactions. She didn’t say anything about it, though.::

Kaji: So he was being reckless? What did you want to do?

Rosek: I wanted to wait...bide our time for the right opportunity. But as soon as that ship started landing...::shakes her head:: I knew we had to get out of there, no matter the cost. It would likely be our only chance.

((Tarna))

Kaji: Did you run into any guards?

:: They had done and he had shown them no mercy. He had delivered, quick, deadly blows. Their suffering would have been minimal but he couldn’t help but feel he was a cold blooded murderer. They hadn’t had the chance to raise weapons, protest, surrender. He hadn’t given them the chance. He felt horrified, guilty, nauseous and remorseful but worse still, a really tiny, spiteful part of hm felt they deserved it for what they collectively had put Lael and himself through. ::

Tarna: Yeah we did, right outside the door. I took an oath to preserve life, and I didn’t even give him a chance to surrender. I was convinced that he would kill us or at the very least attract more guards to us. I used my anatomical knowledge to slay him - it was so easy… and terrible. I can’t help wondering things like... did he have a family to support?

:: His horror at his actions sparked memories of her own. A guard screaming as she violated his mind, dozens on the ground wailing from her mental blasts. Bile rose in her throat and she had to reach for her coffee.::

Kaji: Umm. ::clearing her throat.:: Tell me more about how that affected you.

((Rosek))

Rosek: ::grimaces:: I started to doubt him. I didn't like it. It made me uncomfortable around him.

:: Kaji swallowed, remembering the way Shiarrael had looked at her after their escape. Of course, the Romulan woman hadn’t been frightened, just concerned.::

Kaji: What did you do?

Rosek: ::breathes:: It wasn't long before I had to make a choice.

((Tarna))

Tarna: I saw the light die in his eyes, I watched life slip away from him. It was all the worse for knowing that I was responsible, that I intended it. ::He threw his hands up a little:: I just don’t even know how to begin to process all of this. I keep seeing my victims, as much as I see the bonfire, see my tormentors, it’s all there in my head going around and around like a tornado. It’s hard to sleep, hard to concentrate. I feel miserable all the time.

:: He was waffling now and finally trailed off into uncomfortable silence. He was stuck between being unable to sleep for days on end, followed by periods where he seriously struggled to keep his eyes open and get up. Time just slipped away from him but it didn’t matter because awake or asleep, everything kept bothering him. ::

((Rosek))

Kaji: A choice? :: she was keeping her responses short and quiet, more to facilitate Rosek’s talking than actually asking for information.::

Rosek: Between killing to save Janel and letting him die. ::lips tighten:: The latter wasn't an option...so I did what I had to do. ::pauses:: I thought the guilt would be overwhelming. But all I felt was relief. Relief that he couldn't hurt Janel anymore.

Kaji: How do you feel about it now?

Rosek: ::murmurs:: I have a new appreciation for why so many people hate Romulans.

:: Talia bit her lip. Shiarrael had become a dear friend to her, and the undertone of hatred for her species among the crew made Talia worry. She knew the ex-assassin could handle herself, but it would make for a pretty hostile work environment. It took a lot of willpower for Kaji to refocus the conversation rather than start defending her friend’s species.::

((Tarna))

Kaji: Is that when you were wounded? Um, I mean the head injury. ::She had gotten a peek at his medical records and knew that the extent of the damage couldn’t be explained by just one fight. Days of torture and abuse, then a few terrible fights had caused massive injuries.::

Tarna: Oh yes, but I had to fight a few guards and even before we escaped I’d suffered quite a few beatings.

:: He hadn’t talked of the specifics of the tortures he had endured, like being hung up in a freezer surrounded by diseased, dead bodies in the dark, the water boarding or the humiliation of being subservient to his captors. He shuddered at the thought but remained silent. If she was satisfied with the vague answer he had no wish to dredge up those memories again. ::

((Rosek))

Kaji: So, was that when Tarna’s head was injured? During that fight?

Rosek: The worst of it, yes.

Kaji: How did that affect you, having to care for him?

Rosek: ::murmurs:: I didn't mind caring for him. But by that point, I could tell he was starting to slip away. He was showing signs of serious brain trauma even early on. His thinking process was slowed down, he was struggling to remain awake... ::sucks in a sharp breath:: I wanted to believe that he was just exhausted from being awake for days...but I knew better. ::winces:: The sound it made when his head hit the deck time after time... ::shiver:: There was no way he didn't have brain trauma.

Kaji: So, that’s about the point where the rescue team showed up, right?

TBC in Part IV

===

A JP by

Lt Talia Kaji'
Chief Counselor
USS Victory

&

LtJG Lael Rosek
Operations Officer
USS Victory

&

LtJG Janel Tarna
Medical Officer
USS Victory