PHD #020: Arise and Bear Witness
Arise and Bear Witness
Summary: Michael visits Sickbay for Gabrieli's statement about Sarkis' death.
Date: Mar 18 2041
Related Logs: The Test of Gold and related logs.
Abbot Gabrieli Karthasi 
Recovery Room - Deck 10 - Sickbay
Post Holocaust Day: #20
A much more quiet area of Medical, this elongated room is also lined with beds. Each is similarly outfitted with privacy curtains as necessary and even the paint on the walls has been lightened in an attempt to help lift spirits. Chairs are readily available all over the place so that visitors can pull one up to talk to the patients during their recovery. Near the entrance, visiting hours are posted with a very conspicuous 'No Smoking' sign.
Condition Level: 3 - All Clear

Day Five. Gabrieli is still here, same bed, same curtain drawn around it in the same flimsy semblance of privacy. His right arm is still well and wrapped up, awaiting another round of skin grafts. The gauze on his face is mostly off by now except where the worst of the burns were on his neck, discolored and tightened skin winding around his chin, cheek, and pulling the skin into unpleasant knots of tissue up by his hairline. Or what was his hairline; that's going to take a while to grow back. His laptop is sitting on his rolling tray, no doubt contraband on some level, along with a pile of folders on his side table. He's lying there at the moment, his little handheld work computer pressed into his left palm and lying facedown on his chest.

Having made his way down to sickbay, Michael had stopped for a moment to talk with the nurse on duty before making his way into the recovery room. Once he's drawn past the threshold, there's a brief pauses as his eyes shift about and when they fall upon the area he'd been told Gabrieli was hiding behind, he begins to make his way in that direction. It's only when he draws near enough that he's clearing his through, though he doesn't make a move to draw the curtain open. "Captain, you awake in there?"

The priest creeps in in that way priests are occasionally known to do, drifting on silent feet down a Sickbay ward as down a marble stoa, passing the plinths one by one, blinking in and out of existance as she wafts past openings in curtains, coming on down the line and meeting Michael at the curtain, having come to return Gabrieli's call. She peeks up at the Admiral, a little surprised by the sychronicty of intent— she, for her part, defers to the rank with a warm smile and a nod of her head in a silent greeting, that she might not mute out a reply from within.

"Yeah." Gabrieli's voice is going to sound like this for a while, gravelly and slightly hoarse. He opens his eyes, turning head on the pillow until he can see the shadow projected on the thin blue divider. His thumb flips a switch on the top of the handheld, the glow of the screen dying to black. "Come on in, sir. Just had dinner come by. You can have the jello."

Spotting Karthasi moving up along side of him, Michael is shifting his attenion to her and giving her a quick nod of his head, followed a brief smile, before he's looking back to the curtain. A hand lifts to pull it aside before he's taking a step within. "No, thank you. I swear the stuff they serve in here doesn't come from the galley." The 'work' stuff is noticed and his brow perks up, ever so slightly, "Don't let Captain Diego catch you with this stuff. She's liable to take it all away from you."

Karthasi moves her body back through the last half-step she'd taken, pulling something like an easy two-point turn to head back up the aisle she'd come down, letting the Admiral and the Captain talk.

Gabrieli is aware of a second presence behind Michael, though he can't move his head enough to see who it is. His eyes flicker past Michael and then back to the Admiral's face. "Then I'll call her on some bullshit. I didn't hear 'screen-induced seizures' on the list of things they're watching for." Clearing his throat softly, he puts the end of the handheld on his side table and nudges it up securely there with his thumb.

Noting the fact that Karthasi has turn to walk away, Michael turns his head to cast a look over his shoulder, settling his eyes upon the retreating form of the priest before he lifts his voice a touch, "No need to run away, Captain." Then, he's looking back to Gabrieli, offering the man a quick smile to the reply, "Good enough, I suppose." Arms lift, coming to cross across his chest now, "How are you doing, all things considered? Need anything?"

Guh. Called out, Greje sort of freezes in mid-retreat, summoning up an awkward smile as she peeks back over her shoulder and reverses course, yes, once again, clearing her throat just a little. "I apologize, Admiral, Captain. I didn't wish to interrupt your meeting," she explains, tones even more mild than usual, as if she were terrified of further tripping over social niceties. She glances to Gabrieli with a similarly awkward smile in greeting, mingled with a look almost apologetic for her having tried to flee. She perks up again at the last question from the Admiral, seeing a chance to be Of Use, should he need anything fetched/brought.

"…Sister." Gabrieli's attention flicks back that way as the mystery presence reveals itself. He glances at Michael and then back at Karthasi. Then Michael again, as if unsure of why the priestess is here. "No, I don't need anything, thanks." He looks back and forth from one of the Admiral's blue eyes to the other, and then draws another breath. "But you need to know what happened. The ship needs to know something. Hahn told me she's been hearing ridiculous frakking rumours all over."

There's a look back in the dierction of Karthasi before Michael's returning his look to Gabrieli, only to offer a slight shrug. Then, after a moment, he's giving a slight nod of his head, "That's part of the reason why I'm here, Captain. The MP's are investigating what transpired, but I need to hear from you, exactly what happened." Arms uncross now, though he makes no move to claim a chair. "I've heard some of the rumors, myself."

Karthasi goes all deer-in-headlights as the two of them look at her like she's seriously in the way (or, at least, that's how she imagines it, in her anxiety not to be so), and when she finally moves again er eyes find the floor. "I was just coming by to see how you were, Captain. I'll let you and the Admiral talk— this is an important matter. I will be by to see you later on, Captain," she adds.

"Did you hear the mutiny one?" Gabrieli asks the Admiral, blistered lips pulling back from his teeth in a humorless grin. "I thought that was pretty classy." His head rolls on the pillow, away from the two of them, and he looks up at the ceiling. "'Yea, I praise you, heroic youths, and enjoy my warriors' glorious mutiny; but it is fraud and a hidden assault that we devise…'" Pause for breath. "Godsdamn." His voice sounds like someone unzipped the front from jaw to collarbone and dragged him facedown over the roughest pavement they could find. His tongue wets the cracking corner of his lip and he clears his throat. "Evening, Sister."

There's another look back in the direction of Karthasi, to whom Michael gives another nod, "Thank you, Sister." That said, he's looking back towards Gabrieli, his head giving a slight shake, "No, that was not one of the ones I'd heard. I suppose there are a multitude of versions going around." There's a look around the tables now before he's looking back to Gab, "Need some water, Captain? Or something to wet your lips with?"

Karthasi lets out a held breath as she's released from the net into which she'd inadvertantly swum, first by one, then by the other. Bending in a bow slightly deeper than her usual nod, she turns in a paced, controlled flight.

Karthasi heads through the exit labeled <O> Out.
Karthasi has left.

"Nightstand." Gabrieli indicates where his bendy-straw cup is hiding with a motion of his eyes and that way they stay, watching the space just past the gleaming metal guardrail of his bed. It's a while even after the sound of the Sister's boots has faded that he starts to talk again. "It was Sarkis, sir."

A single step is taken towards the nightstand so that Michael can reach for the cup, only to extend it in the direction of Gabrieli, "Sarkis?" There's a slight pause at that, the gears in his head whirring as he thinks the possibilities through before giving his head a slight shake, "Do you mean that Colonel Sarkis was responsible for what happened, Captain? As in .. knew what he was doing, responsible?"

Gabrieli takes the cup in his unbandaged hand and it's promptly just propped against his leg, fingers wrapped around the plastic top. "I don't know." His voice is low now, not that it wasn't before but now the hush seems to have its own weight. "He told Barclay and I to come up. He wanted to have dinner and talk about some report…we…humored him." Really, how else can he phrase it. They knew the man was off. "When I got there there was glass all over. Spilled liquor in the carpet, I could smell it." Perhaps even now he can remember the licorice scent, something in his expression struggling with it. "Told us to sit, poured me ambrosia. Started…going on about our men, the ones who died falling down stairs and in electrical fires." A moment of pause. "Stairs and wires." He repeats that thought distractedly, echoing something in his head, and then licks his lips. "Evolution. That's what he said. 'We wonder how we got here'. And then Barclay and I both got up to leave."

As Gabrieli begins to speak, Michael's features take on a more serious tone to them, one that's echoed by a slight, disappointing shake of his head as the events are recounted. "My apologies, Captain. I know this must be difficult." Hands shift, sliding behind his back to come to rest against the small of his back. Then, there's another slight nod, "I'd heard the Colonel make mention of those incidents before. It's one of the reasons he was pulled from duty." A pause. "Sorry. Please, continue."

Gabrieli nods, closing his eyes. Though they reopen right after, unwilling to let his mind play the visuals too. He opens his mouth, jaw dipping until it makes a soft crack, and then he continues. "He said something about a timer and the hatch. I don't remember exactly — something exploded right behind me. Knocked Barclay out. I hit the wall and Sarkis was…" His eyes flicker from side to side. "He'd lit a cigarette. I called damage control, right then, and Sarkis…" It's not the memories themselves that are the struggle, it's how to say them. "He told me to try and appreciate what he was doing for us. And he dropped…the…" A swift, soft exhale through his nose. "He dropped the lighter. Caught the liquor, everything was…" Another halt, and he clears his throat quietly. "'Now let me choose a death glorious.' He was saying… 'Men. You and me.' Poured a bottle on himself, all that ambrosia, and that…fire. Frak."

As the story unfolds, Michael gives another shake of his head and a murmered curse can barely be heard escaping his lips. It's one thing to lose a man to battle, but another to lose him to … insanity, and it shows upon his face. "I'm glad that you made it through, Captain. I'm just sorry that we didn't catch this, before it happened." Hands fall loosely to his side now. "I'll make sure the rumors of what transpired, are quashed." He's pausing there, thinking on something before finally continuing, "I won't release the specifics, just that Colonel Sarkis was responsible due to mental illness. Take what ever time you need, Captain, as well."

Gabrieli doesn't say anything for a while, watching the wall with his teeth pressed together behind his lips. "Aye aye, sir." His low is still low, the rawness in it coming back under control. His eyes turn, looking back up at the Admiral beside him. "Will you let me know when the funerals are. I'd like to attend."

Michael's giving a quick nod, followed by a brief smile, though there's no real mirth within. "I'll let you know, Captain. If you're still trapped in here, we'll make sure you get a pass to attend." There's a quick adjustment of his tunic before he's following up with, "Get some rest. Don't hesitate to seek out the shrink or anyone else, myself included, if you want to talk about things. Or burn off some steam."

"Yeah, sure." Gabrieli lifts his left hand, running his fingers over brows that have now started to grow back. "Thanks for coming by, Admiral. Take care of yourself and all that crap."

There's one more nod of Michael's head before he's turning away from the bed so that he begin to make his way out of the Recovery Room and back into the heart of Sickbay itself.

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