SIM:LtCmdr Roshanara Rahman: Little Girl, Big Dreams
The events in this SIM occurred in 2371 and on stardates 239008.11-18. It combines both the original sim "Little Girl, Big Dreams" as well as all subsequent responses until the conclusion of the scene.
((Memorial Museum of Astronautics, Moscow, Earth, 2371))
Amir: Roshanara? (beat) Roshanara?
::Still no reply.::
::That got her attention. The fourteen-year-old girl looked away from the engine assembly display and turned towards her teacher.::
Rahman: Apologies, Masterji.
Amir: If I could pry your attention for just a moment, the rest of the class is heading out for supper.
Rahman: Already? But we just got here!
Amir: Yes, we just got here... eight hours ago.
::The teacher's stern face slipped into a smile, and he put a hand on her shoulder, trying to gently prod her to move along, but she didn't budge.
Amir: Come on, let's go. Besides, you've already seen all the main attractions. Twice.
::He looked over at the historical piece of equipment the girl had been studying. To him, it looked little more than a pile of junk.::
Amir: I can't believe you're really interested in studying all the details of these minor antiques that are left.
Rahman: What are you talking about, Masterji? This is the best part!
::It truly was for her. While the other visiting schoolchildren may have marveled at the ancient craft that lay about the museum, wondering how humans had traveled so far for centuries with such primitive technology, Roshanara found the science and engineering behind those feats even more fascinating.::
::It wasn't magic or inexplicable. Someone four hundred years ago had figured out the calculations. Someone back then had drawn up the designs. And someone had been brave enough to trust all of that as they hurtled out into the unknown.::
::The teacher smiled.::
Amir: All right, well maybe we can arrange another field trip sometime soon. But I really must insist. The museum is closing for the day anyway.
::The spotted girl looked down and sighed.::
Rahman: All right...
::As the two walked out to join the rest of the class from Lahore that was already gathered outside, Roshanara looked up at the NX-Delta warp 3+ prototype that hung in the atrium.::
Rahman: I think, Masterji, I'd like to apply to the Academy.
Amir: And which academy is that?
::He chuckled at the child's ambition.::
Amir: I suppose you'd make a good science officer. You ask so many questions.
Rahman: Not science! Engineering.
::The teacher hesitated in his reply.::
Amir: Engineering? I don't know, Roshanara... That's a dangerous line of work. You saw the exhibit yourself and the memorial. All those men had to be big and strong to pull some of those feats... and even then, some didn't make it.
::She stopped walking and crossed her arms, indignant at the comments.::
Rahman: So what are you saying? I can't because I'm-
Amir: No, of course not. I'm just saying...
::He looked down at her diminutive form and sighed. There was no point in getting into another argument with the stubborn girl, especially right before supper.::
Amir: Come on, it's been a long day. Let's go join the others and get something to eat. Okay? There'll be plenty of interesting things to see this evening and tomorrow before we head back.
Rahman: Yes, Masterji.
::She followed in silence as they met up with the rest of the class. When the transport arrived to take them back into the city, Roshanara turned one last time to look back at the museum, the soaring Monument to the Conquerors of Space standing high above against the setting sun.::
::Masterji would see. They'd all see. She was going to space, and nothing--and no one--would keep her from her dreams.::
((Sickbay, USS Mercury, 2390))
::When she opened her eyes, the first thing she saw was Del's big dumb face, which could only mean that she had died and gone to Jahannam... or she was back on the Mercury.::
::Turning her head slightly, she saw Dr. Hawkeye's face as well. That made the latter more likely.::
RAHMAN: ::groans:: Oooh, my head... actually, my whole body...
::She let out a sigh of exhaustion.::
RAHMAN: We weren't able to stop it, were we? The eruption.
DEL VEDOVA: No. We weren't.
HAWKEYE: I believe an excavation has begun. We have been told to anticipate injured.
::She tried to get up, which was a mistake. The pain brought her back down to the biobed.::
RAHMAN: I have to let the captain know...
DEL VEDOVA: What do you have to let him know?
HAWKEYE: He will easily find out that you are well; engineering will call if they need you.
RAHMAN: No, you don't understand... the eruption wasn't suppose to happen. At least, not as bad as it did.
DEL VEDOVA: It wasn't?
::She turned and saw the dead Andorian lying nearby.::
DEL VEDOVA: Did he know something, Rosh?
RAHMAN: If he's gone, and with him, his testimony, then the only evidence we have left is back on the shuttle. I need to retrieve the sensor data for the captain.
DEL VEDOVA: I don't know anything about that. I didn't even know you were coming in until you'd been admitted. Doctor Hawkeye, do you know anything about the shuttle?
DEL VEDOVA: Then perhaps we can leave that inquiry for later?
::She frowned and looked at Del.::
RAHMAN: Why is it you're always trying to keep me from doing my job?
::Despite her sharp tongue, the friendship behind the words was obvious.::
DEL VEDOVA: Because I'm here to do mine. You can go out and try and kill yourself again as soon as we discharge you, but until then, let us and let your staff do their jobs.
::Just then, they were all joined by another Andorian, this one decidedly more alive.::
CHAUN: Commander! You're... okay?
::She exchanged a glance with the doctors before looking back at the pilot.::
RAHMAN: Nothing that these gentlemen can't handle, I'm sure. I'm guessing my being here has something to do with you?
CHAUN: Ensign Tivall was the one who actually performed the transport-
::She interrupted him.::
RAHMAN: Thank you. Lieutenant.
CHAUN: You're... you're welcome.
::He returned an awkward glance at the other two men and then excused himself before leaving the room.::
::An amused grin crept up on Roshanara's face as she lay back on the biobed.::
RAHMAN: Huh. First time he decided to shut up on his own.
DEL VEDOVA: You do tend to have a certain effect.
::She turned her head slightly to look over at Del with an eyebrow raised at the comment.::
RAHMAN: Maybe you can take some pointers.
DEL VEDOVA: Amusing.
::He acknowledged her teasing with a charitable wink. As Dr. Hawkeye remained focused on the autopsy of the deceased Andorian nearby, there was a brief moment of unspoken affection between the chief engineer and chief of emergency services. It had been nearly one year since they had initially met, when Del surprised her by being the first doctor who decided to restrain his own curiosities regarding her past medical history.::
((FLASHBACK: Sickbay, USS Mercury, SD 238909.25))
::Having finished recounting the details about her accident aboard the Tempest to the doctor -- or at least, all the details he figured he needed to know at this point -- she sat and waited on the biobed as he finished his notes. She looked around the triage area and frowned. She knew what was next, she'd been through this enough times over the years: first the history, then the physical examination. And with it, all the other "curious" physicians, nurses, medical students, and technicians who wanted to gawk at her.::
::Damn them all.::
Rahman: Excuse me, doctor, I don't believe I caught your name earlier.
Del Vedova: Nic del Vedova. Del, if you want.
Rahman: ::nods:: Well, Andorian pilots or not, I would be more comfortable continuing the rest of this examination somewhere with a bit more privacy.
Del Vedova: That won't be necessary.
::She suddenly felt betrayed for having trusted him. She should have known better than to let her guard down around someone wearing medical blue. Her voice was firm.::
Rahman: Doctor Del Vedova, I must insist-
::He quickly interjected.::
Del Vedova: Because you're done. Unless your fingers fall off, Lieutenant Commander, in which case you should come back and see me. But I'm relatively willing to bet that they won't.
::Yet again, he had managed to surprise her, and though she usually thought herself good at reading people, she was decidedly unsure of what to make of this doctor. Was he amused? Sympathetic? Bored?::
::She looked at him warily, as if to decipher his true intentions, but then grabbed onto his hand as he helped her off the biobed. He gestured towards the door silently, and she turned to leave likewise without saying anything. However, she then heard him call out to her.::
Del Vedova: Good to meet you. Let me know if you have any more troubles with what's-his-name.
::She looked back and nodded.::
Rahman: Thank you, doctor. I'll keep that in mind.
::From the bombing of engineering to the spiders of DSX, their friendship had solidified through their shared tribulations of deep space exploration over the past year. Maybe it was his different approach to bedside manner. Maybe it was because he didn't make promises he couldn't keep. Maybe it was because he was kind of a jerk at times and wasn't afraid to show it.::
::Whatever the reason, she felt more comfortable with him now than even some of the rehabilitation physicians that she'd known for years after the accident. Drs. Mol, Haggerty, T'Pran... all of them whom she respected as experts in their fields, and yet Del had managed to do something they never had been able to: earn her trust.::
::When she had first approached him about her new medical issues that had cropped up towards the end of 2389, she hadn't expected him to eventually suggest an innovative surgery to correct the problem. She knew not to expect instant miracles. Four years of grueling rehabilitation had taught her that. Still, as she looked at him now, she suddenly felt a pang of guilt for having let some part of her hope for such a thing.::
::She needed to let him know. The problem hadn't been solved. She should have been the one disappointed, yet she hesitated to let him know the news. He had tried to help her, and it was as if she didn't want to disappoint him, as if somehow it were her fault.::
::A dark thought crossed her mind. Maybe it was her fault.::
DEL VEDOVA: Well, Dr. Hawkeye, I think it's time I got out of your way and stopped antagonizing your patient.
::Del's call to Dr. Hawkeye caught her off-guard.::
HAWKEYE: Thank you, Doctor. Your help was much appreciated.
DEL VEDOVA: Let me know if I can be of any further help, hm?
HAWKEYE: If it calls for it, I will call for you. I merely hope the Aquitania is up to the task before them.
::Del turned to leave, and Roshanara panicked as she tried to get his attention.::
::Del certainly hadn't expected that. Well, Rosh had been pleased -- in her own way -- to see him, he knew that, but shouting after him? He turned back without plausibly hiding the surprise on his face.::
DEL VEDOVA: Yes? (beat) Rosh, what?
::Which came out much harsher than he intended. He walked back to the bed to make up for it. ::
RAHMAN: I, um...
::He arrived at the bedside and leaned slightly toward her, and put a hand on her shoulder. This was new; he often reassured his patients with a light touch, but he had never done it with her. How strange.::
::She stammered as she calmed herself and gathered her thoughts.::
RAHMAN: I'm due for my follow-up with you and Dr. Ven. Between the rehabilitation work on DSX and this mission, I've been pushing it back for too long.
DEL VEDOVA: I know you are. And I know you have.
::But he smiled.::
DEL VEDOVA: I did follow you around with a tricorder a few weeks ago, if you don't remember. But, yes, your follow-up. I mean, with the disaster, *this *doesn't seem the time, but soon, eh?
RAHMAN: I understand of course Dr. Ven needs to be kept informed, but I'd appreciate if I could just meet with you, privately. I hope the doctor won't be offended.
DEL VEDOVA: No need to involve him unless there's anything to involve.
RAHMAN: ::nods:: I'll contact you to set the appointment up.
DEL VEDOVA: At your convenience, then, Lieutenant Commander.
RAHMAN: Thanks, Del.
DEL VEDOVA: See you soon.
::She forced a smile before he left that quickly fell to a frown, which remained as Dr. Hawkeye turned to her.::
HAWKEYE: Rest is required, Commander; rest, if not sleep. You have nearly become Roast Rosh'ana'ra; now you must simmer.
::She glanced over to the Mikulak doctor. She wasn't sure how to take that description of her. The man had such a... unique way of putting things.::
RAHMAN: It's difficult to rest knowing that the crisis at hand hasn't been resolved...
::She sighed as she stared again at the overhead lights.::
RAHMAN: It remains unresolved, yes?
HAWKEYE: I have not been kept appraised of the actions of the ship -- mostly by choice, I am afraid: I do not want to know of suffering I cannot aid.
::He looked back at the dead Andorian, perhaps out of regret or perhaps to emphasize his next point.::
HAWKEYE: But now it seems matters are deeper, and I must remove my blindfold. What do you know of the happenings on the surface?
RAHMAN: This was not a natural disaster -- at least, not entirely. After the captain and the others beamed away to investigate the surface, I remained in the shuttle within the volcano. When the geological instability increased, I detected a distinct firing pattern set off by intricately placed charges. The conclusion is irrefutable: someone wanted that volcano to erupt, and whoever did, wanted to amplify that eruption to an apocalyptic scale.
HAWKEYE: To destroy the world?
RAHMAN: I have no idea, but it certainly doesn't make you think their reasons would be benign.
HAWKEYE: There are few benign reasons for destruction on this scale.
RAHMAN: It's possible the eruption began when it did because someone saw us approach the volcano. We were supposed to have had more time... the coincidences are a bit too disturbing to ignore.
::The doctor nodded.::
HAWKEYE: I have known too much of ... timed reactions. A proximity sensor would be easiest. Eradicate those who would clean it, as they tried --
::He nodded again as he stopped himself, and she shifted her eyes downward at the dreadful thought. Even if she had agreed with the arguably harsh but necessary principal of the prime directive, it was still a tragedy to witness the cold indifference of a natural disaster against a native population. Now, though, they had every reason to suspect attempted genocide.::
::Attempted and now possibly successful.::
HAWKEYE: You are most fortunate, Rosh'ana'ra; but unfortunate in one way, perhaps. With all the regenerated tissue, you will not suffer from a scar.
::She glanced back at the man, his puzzling statement grabbing her attention from her thoughts.::
RAHMAN: Excuse me, doctor?
::His ears tilted forward slightly::
HAWKEYE: Because when someone asked where you got the scar, your answer would have been 'Volcano'. ::He shrugged.:: It will be a difficult story to top.
::She almost chuckled.::
RAHMAN: That's quite all right. I have collected more than enough scars for one lifetime.
HAWKEYE: Do we know who is responsible?
RAHMAN: The other team might have discovered something... ::She looked again at the dead Andorian.:: ...or someone who knows. ::beat:: Even then, the answers might be on the shuttle...
::As if they heard her, the sickbay doors hissed open to introduce Reez and Chief Higgons. The two senior engineers walked up to Roshanara. Reez looked her over, seemingly to make sure she was still in one piece before he then crossed his arms and shook his head.::
REEZ: I'm beginning to think you have a death wish, Roshni.
RAHMAN: Oh? And what would give you that idea?
REEZ: I just came back from the shuttlebay to check out the damage to the Tereshkova -- or should I say what's left of the Tereshkova. ::He sighed.:: You know I just cleaned it last week. Couldn't have looked any better than when it first came off the line at Utopia.
RAHMAN: You know, I wasn't going to say anything, but now that you mentioned it, I did notice how polished the consoles were as I was clinging onto them for dear life. Extra slick.
REEZ: Well, thank you. I take pride in my work.
RAHMAN: All right, so what is the status of the shuttle, chiefs?
REEZ: Besides you, the transporter managed to get half of the cockpit and the shuttle hatch.
RAHMAN: Please tell me that half of the cockpit includes the sensor data storage module.
REEZ: Mmmm, possibly, but the whole thing's one magnificently melted mess.
::She looked back at him silently before turning to Higgons, who updated her on the Mercury's status.::
RAHMAN: All right, salvaging the data from the shuttle's sensors is priority. Assemble a team to begin work immediately. I want an initial report in two hours.
RAHMAN: Enlist the aid of Commander Fanel as well. As a former marine, the man's expertise on demolitions and ordinance should prove useful.
REEZ: Never one to take a break, are you?
RAHMAN: How long have you known me?
::He didn't need to answer that; her point was clear. The Denobulan shook his head before he turned to Chief Higgons.::
REEZ: ...all right, let's go, Higgons. We should give the chief her rest. ::tapping his combadge:: =/\= Reez to Commander Fanel. =/\=
FANEL: =/\= Yes? =/\=
REEZ: =/\= Sir, if you could join an engineering team in the shuttlebay, Commander Rahman would be most appreciative of your expertise. =/\=
FANEL: =/\= I'm already in the shuttlebay. I'm by my fighter. =/\=
::After acknowledging the mission specialist, Reez glanced back at Roshanara.::
REEZ: Enjoy your two hour nap.
::He might have been joking, but within a few minutes, the chief engineer was fast asleep, dreaming of new ways to torment her engineering crew.::
Lt. Commander Roshanara Rahman