Phlox gave them each twenty shots' worth of potassium carbonite to carry with them in bags, “We should indicate, somehow, as to which member of the crew is in which room,” T'Pol said.
"A list,” Malcolm said, “But it would be better if the rooms were somehow marked as well."
"Over there,” Phlox said, giving An a shot of potassium carbonite, “Take that box with you."
"Chalk,” Malcolm said, “I think they did this in the Middle Ages when there were plagues. Some small memory of hist'ry."
"Come back when you're out of shots and I'll give you refills,” Phlox said, “Act quickly. And be sure to indicate if any are more advanced. Crewman Melissa Madden over there seems to be particularly affected,” She had dark bumps all over her face and arms and was sharing a surgical bed that had been pressed into service. Her bedmate, Ensign MacKenzie, seemed less afflicted.
Malcolm and T'Pol left.
"Let's leave the closest room open,” Malcolm suggested, “For the captain."
"And for you, Mr. Reed,” she replied, “Here, help me with Mr. Masterson."
Then Crossman. Malcolm marked on the door: Masterson, Crossman
They moved on.
Pike, Delacroix (A).
It was 'A
' for Advanced. T'Pol tapped out notes as they proceeded.
"I'm out of inoculations,” Malcolm said, “How many have we got so far?"
"Eighteen women. Twenty-two men,” T'Pol said, “Plus in Sick Bay there are six men and four women. Keep in mind that there are three male medical students and two females. Plus you."
"So," Reed did a quick calculation in his head, “Sixteen human women remain, and, and thirty-two men. We'll have to go back for more inoculations twice. This deck is nearly full. We'll need to move to C Deck soon."
"Agreed,” she said. They ran back to Sick Bay together.
"Have you located Captain Archer yet?" Phlox asked, preparing more shots.
"No,” T'Pol said, “We've only been clearing this deck so far."
"Proceed,” Dr. Phlox said, “Right now, I don't know what's a priority. Just, just do what you can."
"Understood,” Malcolm said as they departed.
They found Captain Archer collapsed in front of the lift, “Come along, Captain,” Malcolm said, throwing his arm around Jonathan's waist, “T'Pol, other side, if you please."
They slowly walked the captain over but he was dead weight.
"Wait, let's try it this way,” Malcolm said, “Lie him down, then we'll take arms and legs."
"This is a little ... undignified,” Jonathan managed to gasp out as they carried him.
"You should see the other guy,” Malcolm said, “Ah, here we are."
They laid Jonathan down. He looked pasty pale, “T'Pol," he gasped weakly, “Take command."
"Yes, Captain,” she said, injecting him.
"Onward to C Deck,” Malcolm said.
They found Crewman Haddon in her own quarters, quivering and mumbling incoherently, her face and hands covered with dark blotchy bumps. She weakly tried to fight them off. They ended up injecting her before even getting her into bed. It was just easier. Corporal Amanda Cole ended up as her bunkmate.
Cole, Haddon (A).
They kept going, gathered another round of shots when needed and continued.
They moved on until they'd cleared C Deck.
"How far along are we?" Malcolm asked T'Pol, straightening up and rubbing his own back. Fireman's carries, over and over again, were not doing his back and shoulders any favors. He remembered for a second the initial reason why his shoulders were bothering him. Too much worry, thinking about Pamela, knocked out in Sick Bay. He compartmentalized it, saving the emotions for later. Best to concentrate on what he was doing.
"I said, Lieutenant, fifty-eight men and thirty-six women. We are done with the women,” T'Pol said, “Are you feeling well enough to continue?"
"Yes. Just, just worried. I imagine the last three men are still at their posts."
"Tucker. Torres,” she read off the remaining names, “And Crewman Miller."
"So two are probably in Engineering, and the other in the Bio Lab,” Malcolm deduced, “Let's go to Engineering first."
"That is a logical course of action."
Tucker was found next to the warp engines. He barely protested when they carried him to a room on C Deck. He bunked with Bernstein.
Torres was harder to find. They finally located him behind some plasma relays. He was uncontrollably coughing. A quick shot stopped that. He was heavy, over two meters tall. After considerable grunting and sweaty work, they got him to a room on C Deck.
Miller was not in the Bio Lab. They finally found him, passed out, in front of the big freezer in the kitchen, the freezer door wide open. He was lighter than Torres, and Malcolm could lift him by himself. One last pass, one last marker.
They made their way back to Sick Bay. Phlox was sitting on a stool. He looked wan, “We'll need a plan of action,” he said, “The injections of potassium carbonite aren't really full stasis. The patients will continue to worsen, albeit more slowly."
Malcolm looked over at Pamela. She looked sweaty, but more like she was sleeping than anything else. A lot like she did when she slept next to him, “Is she dying?" he asked Phlox.
"Lieutenant," Phlox paused for a breath, "they all are."
"Doctor T'Par, can you treat her?" asked Ambassador Soval, looking at Dr. Keating-Fong, who was lying in the Ti’Mur's infirmary.
"Yes, although the records are rather sparse,” she said, “This is an ancient, eradicated human disease."
"Eradicated? Then surely there is a cure,” he said.
"No. It was eradicated with prevention in either the twentieth or the twenty-first century. The records are, as I said, unclear. When the human population was completely protected by preventative injections, the search for a cure was abandoned."
"Still, you can cure Dr. Keating-Fong?"
"Yes. I can. And reverse the skin damage as well, although that's a considerably lower priority."
"Naturally. Is the doctor contagious?"
"Not to Vulcans, or to any species other than human. And, not contagious any more, although she was perhaps a week ago."
"That's when she was still on the Enterprise
,” said the Ambassador, “We must contact them immediately."
"Mr. Reed. Mr. Reed
,” T'Pol said.
"Yes. Sorry,” He couldn't stop looking at Pamela. She seemed
"I'll repeat what I just said,” Phlox said, “The patients have, perhaps, five days at most. The more advanced ones, more like three or four."
"We'll be rendezvousing with the Ti’Mur
in seven days,” Malcolm said, “Unless we can get closer. Are engines still working?"
"Spotty,” T'Pol said, “Plus with the neutron pulsing in this area, the going may be difficult. A well-trained pilot would be best."
"There's your well-trained pilot, lying over there,” Malcolm said, indicating Travis, knocked out with Mark Stone.
"What about Communications?" Phlox asked.
"I managed to get a distress call out but long-range is not working,” T'Pol said, “It is difficult to say how far the message traveled."
"I don't have much in the way of medical information,” Phlox said, “Foolish student, someone wiped the database. Now that person's cheating ways will get them all killed."
"Doctor, we will have to devise a cure from scratch,” T'Pol said.
"Yes. Work 'round the clock,” the doctor said.
"Then Mr. Reed," T'Pol said, "I hereby relinquish command to you."
"Yes. I can help Dr. Phlox much better than you can. My place is here."
"Very well,” Malcolm said, “But we, we won't stand on ceremony. We'll all make all of the decisions, if that's, if it's appropriate. Everyone's vote will be equal. I will work on Communications, and I'll see if I can move the ship in the direction of the Ti’Mur
, and do so as quickly as possible. You both will, well, it's obvious. Medical is top priority. I will assist in any way I can, just tell me. And, and, I'll prepare and bring you your meals. It won't be anything fancy."
"Then we are in agreement,” T'Pol said, “And if you find yourself becoming ill, Mr. Reed, you will turn command back over to me."
"Yes, of course."
"Roll up your sleeve,” Phlox said.
Malcolm did as asked. Phlox jabbed his arm with a needle, “Ow!"
"A half a liter should do,” Phlox said, “But if you become faint, tell me immediately."
Malcolm waited as his blood was drawn, “Do you, do you have any idea why I am unaffected so far?" he asked.
"None. Hopefully, your blood will tell the tale."
It was a ship, coming at high warp.
Heading right for them.