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Duty Calls

Posted on 10/21/2019 @ 11:41pm by Captain Jamie Perth & Colonel Celeste Porter

Mission: 1 - Twilight
Location: Artemis
Timeline: MD 02 - 00:35

Jamie was beyond exhausted.

There'd been three critically-wounded. One died from active internal hemorrhage because there hadn't been enough blood to transfuse, despite multiple people donating at the casualty receiving (CASREC) unit's waiting area. Time had simply run out for that man; he would've most likely survived if he'd been at a proper hospital.

Calls were relayed out in search of a surgeon across the ship. The one lab tech worked tirelessly processing donated blood. Pathology services were limited to point-of-care testing. Having a radiographer run X-rays and CT scans was a blessing. All available corpsmen dutifully carried out specified tasks, whilst Jamie shouldered the task of coordinating everything.

It'd been only a few months since he received his fellowship testamur, and now he was trying to run a mass casualty incident. The only other time he faced something similar was a few years back at Royal Glenvale after a pile-up, and wasn't even in-charge of the response at the time.

The other two patients survived, but only just. Both were intubated and dependent on substantial life-support. There was no way to tell whether their bodies could recover from the physiological insults sustained.

Only when things settled down did Jamie receive the message one of the CPOs had been trying to pass to him. Turns out the man was the newly-designated quartermaster, responsible for somehow sorting out a role for everyone on the ship. A responsibility that seemed even more impossible.

Jamie had no idea where the CO's office was, and had to bother the quartermaster for directions. It still took him a while to figure it out, but eventually found his way.

He hoped this would be quick. Sickbay was still in utter chaos, although less so than an hour ago. People still needed him, and it was his opinion that under such circumstances the usual reporting-in formalities should be at the very bottom of the priorities list.

Celeste had kept the door to the small CO's office open. Mostly because she didn't know if she'd be able to get it open again without help otherwise. But also because she had the idea that someone may want to find her, and leaving the door open would make that easier. As she heard the footsteps coming down the corridor, she turned to see a very tired looking man walking toward her, wearing what ostensibly made him stand out as a medical tech of some kind. She waved him in, and turned back around, surveying the office and figuring out what was where.

"Have a seat," she ordered. "I'm just trying to find a pen and paper in one of these drawers." There was an awkward silence as she continued to dig, until she finally pulled a small pad and a pen out. Sighing in satisfaction, she set them down on the desk and sat opposite.

Looking into his eyes directly, she said, "I presume the Quartermaster sent you to me for a reason, since I ordered him to find specialists and skilled people. So tell me who you are and what you do."

Jamie stepped in and took that seat as suggested, quickly running a hand over his dark blue scrub top, as if trying to smooth it out. He'd been given a fresh set of uniforms - one set of the formal variety, whilst the rest were utility fatigues of both the dark green and digital camouflage type. But like most medical staff, he had a preference for the scrub top over a pair of bottom cammies, a small patch denoting his rank velcroed over the front of his chest. Disappointingly, he hadn't had a shower yet, but at least he was in work clothing that was somewhat fresh.

The young doctor watched as she went hunting for that pen, a few wisps of her blonde hair hanging down before being pushed back by her hand. "My name's Jamie Perth, sir. Reservist medical officer. I'm an emergency physician," he answered directly.

She jotted the information down onto the notepad, and paused for a moment. Looking back up at him, she said, "I think you can pretty much consider yourself no longer a reservist and fully active duty at this point."

Looking back down at her notepad, she continued, "for whatever being active duty in the Colonial Militia is worth anymore, anyway. Doctor Perth, have you had a chance to assess the situation in the triage ward and sickbay? And if so, what supplies do we need, off hand?"

He frowned a little, trying to think clearly. It felt like both a reasonable and ridiculous question at the same time. Like, could he ask for an entire hospital and a full complement of medical staff? Of course not. He'd like that, though.

Instead, he answered, "Umm...uh. We need more people to donate blood. The greater the variety of blood groups, the better. We need someone to make a broadcast out to all nearby Colonial vessels asking for more medical personnel. Doctors, surgeons, nurses, radiographers, lab staff... anyone with experience in healthcare. If our sickbay is to act as the main receiving facility, we should send people out to scavenge for supplies from other vessels in the shipyard, if possible. We'll also need to clear out any extra space for casualties - hangar and cargo bays, mess halls..."

Jamie's voice trailed off. He knew there'd be more he could request, but those were the immediate things that came to mind. He wasn't expecting to have all his requests granted, but he'd be happy to accept anything now.

"We need the hangars for the Vipers and Raptors at the moment. But we've got some other large internal spaces I can spare. We've scavenged everything we could from the scrapyard, but I can have a couple Raptors sent back out to look specifically for medical supplies. As for blood donations, I can ask for volunteers from the crew aboard Artemis, but I'm not sending out a call to anyone outside of us directly, and risk us getting noticed by the Cylons with our pants down," Celeste responded in kind.

She scribbled down a note, and passed it to him. "This is my direct order, ordering you back into active service and authorizing you to press-gang anyone with any medical experience onto your staff. Anything else you can think of?"

"Uh," Jamie blinked a few times, taking the paper note. His mind felt so boggled with everything that had been happening around him for the past few hours. "No, I can't think of anything else at the moment, sir," he said. "In fact, I feel like I could hardly think anything properly at all."

He felt like he shouldn't have said that, but it was the truth. Of course he'd still be able to make medical decisions and perform his job - he would hope so - but it'd be a lie to say recent events wouldn't affect him. He could guarantee the same for just about everyone else. The Colonel appeared much more calm and collected. Perhaps it was a full-time military thing that reservists like himself had missed out on.

And so he followed up with, "But I'll let you know if our department has other requests, sir."

"Please do. I have a feeling you're going to be a popular man. Don't forget to take shifts. You're going to need rest as much, if not more than everyone else. Even if it's just laying on your back and staring at the bulkhead."

She smiled sadly at him, and said, "Welcome to the Artemis, such as she is."

Jamie didn't feel so excited about being a 'popular man', at least not under such circumstances, but he knew she meant well. "Of course, sir. Thank you," he said, before standing to make his departure.


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