"Something Deeper"
[Previous post: "Echoes", written by the always thinking Sabrina]

Setting: NEW ALEXANDRIA, Section H, Level 8, Training Holodeck 1
Stardate: 63071.0545

Lea sat on the ground, her leg elevated and her mind adrift.  People did what they were best at.  The CMO could easily imagine that Sabrina had been searching for a way to lead her crew to safety. Lea grinned as she pictured the CSciO doing more researching than walking.

That smile grew larger when she saw Elan return with something in his hand. When Engineers didn't fix things, they built them, and Elan was a master in his field.

The CMO studied with interest the makeshift crutch Elan had fabricated out of a few branches and vines.  The giant had been so thoughtful that he had built in some padding at the top.

"You *are* an angel," Lea said as she accepted the CEO's gift. Although pleased that this would allow her to once again walk, the CMO felt some disappointment.  Being carried with such care and dedication by Elan had quickly spoiled her.

"It is an honor to help Healer," the giant said as he bowed his head. As simple as the gesture had been, Lea felt an amazing level of respect pouring from Elan.  His reverence for anyone in the field of medicine had been well documented.  Still the CMO had a hard time getting used to it.

"Let me redress the bandage and we can be on our way," Lea said with a sigh.  The CMO would not be able to redo the bandage that many times before exposing herself more than she wanted.

Just as Lea prepared to rip another strip of her uniform she heard the distinct sound of fabric being torn. The CMO looked up to see Elan handing her a piece of his uniform.  The giant had not pondered this action, he had only done what he thought needed to be done.

Lea quickly bandaged her ankle once more under the gentle watch of her guardian.  Once done Elan bent down and offered help to the CMO to get her back on her feet. As he did so a small silvery tube slipped from his shirt pocket.  With a reflex that even surprised her, Lea intercepted the item before it fell to the ground.

Elan seemed on the verge of a panic attack. Whatever the item was, it held significant meaning to the giant. With care Lea offered the silvery tube back to the CEO who gratefully accepted.  The item seemed to vanish in the Oltharian's hand, but not before Lea had managed to guess what it was.

"Is that a flute?" Lea asked, unable to visualize Elan's massive hands holding onto something so delicate.

"It is," Elan answered. Although not a Counselor Lea could easily tell that there had been more to this.

"So what is you playing that I hear last night?  I thought that I was dreaming, but now it makes sense. The music was truly beautiful," the CMO said, half hoping that Elan would reveal more about the flute was so important to him.

The CEO almost seemed troubled by the news that Lea had heard him play the night before.  It had been as if the CMO had been made aware of a secret that she should not have known about.

"I would very much like to hear you play again," Lea added. "From what I did hear, you are very talented."

Elan just stood there for several seconds, frozen in thoughts. Lea could only guess that there had been some internal conflict raging within the giant. The instrument held a meaning that the CEO had not been willing to share. His absolute respect for the CMO though had made it impossible for him to flat out refuse her request.

In an effort to put this growing uneasiness behind them, Lea forced herself onto the crutch and took a step. Soon a second and a third shaky step followed which placed the CMO ahead of the CEO.

"So Elan, coming, or am I doing the rest of this journey on my own?"

That had been more than enough to get the gentle giant rushing to the CMO's side. A task that took him less than a single step.

Tiffany Rose {lady.tiffany.rose@gmail.com}

Lt. Lea Summers
Chief Medical Officer