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Ensign Taelon - A Solid 2 Day's Work

Sal Taybrim

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OOC - in my 2am haze I grabbed the wrong sim >.<
Let's try this again ❤️

This was raw and beautifully written

((Ejectable Quarantine Labs - Starbase 118))
(Day of -> 2 Days after the Narendra’s return)
The pods that’d been transported had been added to a storage frame repurposed from the cargo areas, leaving them looking less like isolation pods and more like massive construction pieces. Taelon was vaguely reminded of the massive pipes he’d seen being transported by the cargo runners he’d gotten to Earth with. Either way, it gave the rescue operation something of an industrial air, especially when the massive cargo loaders picked them up and slid them into the ejectable labs. 
The first stage was - well, barbaric, but necessary. He’d sealed himself into a section of the ejectables so he could monitor progress without having to open the suite to outside comms, and the usually shy and reticent El-Aurian watched with a strange coldness as the drones were dragged from their isolation pods onto a flat table, the spider-like remote surgery robots going to work with abandon. Limps were removed entirely; replaced eyes and skull pieces were deconstructed and taken away, leaving open voids in the skull. It happened quickly; the robots worked incredibly quickly, and within half an hour what had been a tactical drone was a limbless human, their skull open through the eye socket. Their pale skin was unhealthy and drained of life after years in the Borg’s grasp. 
But the attaching of life-saving backup systems and stitches could only come when the nanites were gone, and Taelon stared intently at his monitors as his countermeasures went to work as soon as a section was removed. An internal battle for control was never going to be healthy for the host, and small bruises appeared on the human’s skin as the nanite’s fighting ruptured small blood vessels. 
It was awful, what the Borg did - removing and assimilating whatever they didn’t need. Taelon had been raised to see cybernetics as something quite normal, desirable even - but they were supposed to help and enhance a willing subject, not be applied as a method of control. The Borg’s cybernetics were a way to force a living being to serve them. It made him sick to see it. 
Thankfully the sealed-off nature of the quarantine labs neutralised the Borg’s greatest advantage. With no hivemind to connect to and take information from, they could only adapt slightly. It was a rare advantage against the Borg, one that made any of this possible. 
The process took about an hour on the first subject. The limbless, unconscious body was hurriedly moved to a second bay within the lab, this one with an entrance to the Starbase itself, and attached to life-sustaining backup systems and monitors. The next step was Doctor Foster’s - to remove and replace the infested and dying organs and seal up any openings. 
The third step - full replacement of their now-missing limbs and non-required pieces - would come days later. Taelon had plans for that, too, but for now his priority was the drones. They could live in status once removed from their Borg parts, but they wouldn’t live forever in the pods. 
He sealed the connected section and sent it away towards the medical bays, taking a moment to rub his eyes. He’d brought only a large thermos of coffee and a scone into the lab with him, and that’d have to do. Once the process had started, he’d no intention of stopping til all the drones they’d managed to grab were in a safer state. 
Eventually, as exhaustion set in, he set his ARIA to play music. It kept him awake, and as he worked, it was easier to coordinate movement and steps to the beat. 
And so the process went on, drone after drone. Some were faster, some took longer; the tactical drones in particular were the most difficult, as the Borg had done the most damage to them. The Andromeda’s crew were faster; most got to keep their limbs, eyes, and organs. A small mercy, considering what the rescued full drones looked like. 
In the end, Galven was one of the final pods, the Commander’s unconscious body slid onto the table. He was simple, thankfully - he only had a flood of nanites in his system. But they’d injected into his heart and brain, and so Taelon tiredly watched the lifesigns as the nanites battled things out, the man’s heart surging and bleeding, his brain misfiring and sending his limbs twitching. It was difficult to watch, but necessary. Eventually, Taelon’s crafted nanites won out, again. 
With Galven sent along the process line to medical, Taelon slid down the wall of his observation chamber, slumping to the floor. It’d been close to 40 hours; his thermos was empty, the food long gone. His body was protesting with every muscle. Still, as things were closed off, he reached to the control panel and flipped the switch. It sent the signal to eject the lab, leaving the observation chamber in the airlock as the lab was jettisoned into space. A final precaution to ensure no loose nanites made it onto the station. 
Only when the observation pod had been cleaned completely did he stand up, shakily, and step out of it into the airlock. The blank, opened-ended area was a contrast to the lab that had sat there just a few moments ago. He hurried to the doors, tapping his commbadge. 
Taelon: =/\= Doc-doctor - ::He couldn’t help but pause to yawn.:: =/\= That’s the last of the, of the drones. I’m - I’m on my way to Medical now. =/\=
Foster: ?
Taelon: =/\= P-provided they’re all stable and in, um, in stasis, we can start the next step. =/\=
Foster: ? 
Taelon: =/\= Rebuilding. Should start from the inside out, organs, then limbs… =/\=
Foster: ?
Ensign Taelon
Starbase 118 OPs
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