PHD #115: Extrapolate
Summary: Byrne meets with Cora to determine if she's psychologically fit to return to duty.
Date: 21 June 2041 AE
Related Logs: None
Byrne Cora 
Psychiatry Office
A small office with a desk, chair and lounging couch.
Post-Holocaust Day: 115

It's about midday, as space time goes, and Dr. Byrne has reported as requested to the Psychiatric Office for a scheduled evaluation. He takes up his seat behind the desk and opens up the file for the evaluation he's about the perform. A few moments of reviewing the sparsely notated charts and papers and he sighs just a bit. Military charting is never quite as thorough as Civilian to his mind. Or perhaps all the information hasn't been given to him. Eitherway, Byrne knows how the military works well enough to know what they want him to find out here and now. A brow quirks a bit as he notes that the XO has requested this evaluation be expidited. And so he sits and waits at his desk for the arrival of Lt. Nikephoros.

Cora arrives at the appointed time, rapping her knuckles on the open door as she steps inside. "Dr. Byrne?" she inquires, "Lt. Cora Nikephoros. I was asked to meet with you by Major Cavanaugh as part of my evaluation for clearance." Even if her file didn't mention it, it wouldn't be difficult to guess she's recently come from Leonis: sunburned, scratched, and scraped, too thin, and with her right hand bandaged and splinted. She moves towards the chair opposite the psychiatrists desk, but does not sit just yet.

At the knock, Byrne glances up and offers a faint nod and smile to Cora, standing as she enters, "Yes indeed. Please, have a seat, and I'll try to make this as painless as possible, alright?" And with that, he motions to the chair she has taken to standing in front of before seating himself. He picks up a leather bound pad of paper and a pen, clicking the pen once and scribbling down a few things on the pad before he begins, "How are you feeling today?"

Cora takes a seat, nodding, "Sounds good," as she does, and settling back, though her posture retains a certain soldierly erectness all the same. She watches silently as he takes preliminary notes, and then replies to that first question, "My hand aches slightly, otherwise I feel fine, thank you."

A few notes are jotted down, a glance up towards Cora is given and then Byrne returns his gaze to the pad of paper, "Are they giving you enough pain medication for your hand?" What exactly does that have to do with her mental state? He continues on though, not waiting for the answer to his question, "I see here that you were a Leonis survivor. How are you dealing with the transition onto the ship?"

"Yes, I was given a standard painkiller," Cora replies, "It's not a particularly serious wound." As Byrne continues straight on to the next question, she's waited until he finished to answer that first one and now moves straight on to the second, "I'm pleased to be off Leonis, of course. I'm eager to be able to resume my commission and begin work aboard Cerberus as an official member of its crew."

There is a period of silence while Byrne jots down various notes and takes a glance at her official file, skimming through to the x-ray of her hand, then nodding faintly before looking up to Cora once more, "And what of the trials and tribulations you suffered on Leonis? Have you lost anyone close to you lately?" That has to be a trick question, EVERYONE has lost somebody close to them lately.

That ex-ray will show a bullet wound straight through her palm, narrowly missing two bones, which bent and cracked slightly, accounting for the splint. That question… well, Cora takes it for a trick as well, a brow lifting skeptically, "Is that a joke?"

And a few more jots at her reaction, shaking his head just a bit as he looks down at his pad, "Not at all, Lieutenant." And then he glances back up expectantly. Nope, he's not saying anything more on the matter. It's one of those evaluative question, the content of the answer isn't what he's interested in.

Cora just waits, sitting quietly, hands folded in her lap, and looks back at Byrne as expectantly as he looks at her. It seems that if the question is not a joke, it is one she does not deem worthy of an answer, or else she's decided it was rhetorical, or something. In any case, she doesn't look like she's planning to answer it.

Interesting. Byrne jots down a few more notes on his pad, then speaks up after a few moments, "Was that your entire answer, or are you still formulating a response?" And now he seems to decide is a good time to offer up some small amount of explanation, "If you have anything you want to talk about, now is as good of a time as any, Lieutenant."

Cora smiles politely and replies, "That was the entirety of my response, doctor. I think you ought to be able to extrapolate an answer to that question easily enough without my assistance." Her file offers her last posting as Atlas, destroyed at Virgon, her home as Caprica, similarly annihilated of life and heavily occupied, and mentions a brother visited on Leonis who did not survive the attack with her. As for things she wants to talk about, she shakes her head, polite again, "I don't believe there's anything I need to discuss at the moment, but thank you."

Yet another moment of silence is offered as the Doctor takes a few more notes and he glances up once more, "Extrapolating answers generally involves making assumptions. Rarely do I define it as my job to make assumptions. That being said, I asked the question to assess your emtional state over the loss you feel, and to determine if that would impact your ability to do your duty." His features remain stoic as he considers the woman for a few more moments, "Do you feel that you are fit for duty?"

"You wouldn't agree that all practice of medicine, in particular psychiatry, involves making assumptions?" Cora asks mildly, lifting a brow, "That's an interesting stance, doctor." It's an academic sort of interest that colors her words, and then waits through his silent assessment, unruffled, and finally nods, "Yes, I do."

"I would assert quite wholeheartedly that it should involve making as few assumptions as possible, especially regarding the mental health and stability of a patient. I gather information, and make some inferences as necessary, that is not the same as making assumptions." Byrne replies quite cordially, no real negativity to his tone. "And why do you feel that you are fit for duty, given that you have suffered great losses recently?"

"As few as possible, of course," Cora agrees, and then disagrees: "But inference and extrapolation and assumption are differences in diction rather than actual process." She shrugs very slightly (there's a cracked rib in that medical report as well), and then her lips curve in a hint of a smile and she replies, "Well, for one, doctor, if suffering great losses recently disqualified one for duty, this ship would currently be entirely devoid of people fit to operate it."

"That distinction is overly narrow. An assumption is a pressuposition based on previous experience, whether or not it is accurate. An inference is a logical jump based on the facts at hand. It does not rely on previous experience as an assumption does. However, a semantic argument regarding our different interpretations of what I do is hardly relevant to the process at hand." Byrne replies, not adding to his notes at all for that brief interlude. He notes her smile, though his face remains neutral, stoic. At her response, he jots down a few more notes and then offers a quiet nod, "That would be a relevant fact if that had been the question I asked. I didn't ask why everyone else was fit for duty given their recent loss. I asked why you felt you were fit for duty given your recent loss. Why do you feel that you are fit for duty, given the recent losses you have suffered?"

"In either of those cases, doctor, as you define them, a piece of potentially valuable information is being ignored," Cora points out, "In one case, present circumstances, in the other, past results of similar circumstances. So they are both flawed, more or less equally. Differentiating between the two in order to claim that one is acceptable and the other not seems very semantic indeed." That's all she has to say about that at the moment, her expression remaining impassive as he rejects her response to his previous question. "Because I'm confident that I am capable of performing what would be my duties in a competent and efficient fashion," she says, "Nothing about my present situation would hinder my ability in that regard."

Her thoughts on his differentiation, while heard out completely, aren't commented on. It seems he was serious about being done with that particular line of discussion as it wasn't relevant. That being said, he does notate a bit more during her further digression, and then glances up once more after she is finished explaining why she feels she is fit for duty. "You are a cogent, intelligent, and well reasoned officer. I would agree that you are fit for duty, though your lack of a desire to speak about how you feel about recent events concerns me a bit. I am going to recommend bi-monthly sessions with either myself or another Psychiatrist in the department for three months, and then a reevaluation at the end of that period. I can't order the therapy, but I will be filing it with the head of the Psychiatric department who will review my notes." There is a brief pause and a slight smile offered, "And before you object, you should know that I recommend it for most of my patients. You are cleared for duty until your next scheduled psychiatric evaluation."

Cora listens patiently, and though she does not appear thrilled at his pronouncement, she doesn't seem shocked, either. "If you insist, doctor," she replies, rising, "Very well. Have a good evening." She nods politely, and exits.

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