Goodbye Sol – Page 13

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“Anaya.” Asher’s voice came through the com system, shrill and quick. “I need you here…” There was a long pause and I heard a loud metal on metal smashing noise. “In the infirmary!”
I heard some grunts come through the speakers before the audio cut out. I glanced at Willow, sighed and hung my head. I was disappointed that we couldn’t continue our conversation. “Sorry.”
I stood up quickly from my bed, left my room and ran up the stairs. I rushed around the wall that divided most of the ship and slowed as I entered into the infirmary section where the cryo pods were set-up.
I was shocked by what I saw when I entered. There was Asher holding Skyler from behind. Both of them were sitting on the floor and Asher’s arms were awkwardly wrapped around the violently shaking young man.
“I don’t know what he was thinking!” Emeric yelled at me from behind them.
Skyler’s legs were splayed out in front of him and they twitched randomly. His torso leaned on Asher, but Skyler appeared to being trying to slip from Asher’s arms.
Emeric stood a few feet behind Asher, leaning on the door to the engineering section. He seemed content to watch the scene unfold with his arms firmly at his side and a scowl on his face.
“What do I do with this guy?” Asher groaned, as he continued to struggle with Skyler.
“Can you guys get him back in his pod?” I asked and quickly grabbed some of my instruments. “What happened here?”
“Get off me or I’ll kill you!” Skyler screamed.
“Good!” I exclaimed, “he’s starting to get his senses back.”
I walked closer and tried to speak loudly but gently. “Skyler, I need to get some medical readings from you, but that would be easier if you are in your pod. Do you understand?”
“I’m not new,” he replied.
“Does that mean he understands?” Emeric asked and I shrugged in reply.
“Skyler, do you understand me?”
“Yeah, I get what you’re saying! We’re both speaking English here!”
“Excellent.” I tried to ignore his tone. They say doctors are supposed to be impartial, but all I wanted to do was leave him on the floor. “I need you back in your pod, you’re not yet strong enough to be out.”
“No. Hell no! I’m not going back in there. Take me back to my ship!”
“We can’t go back, Skyer,” it was Willow’s voice from behind me. She sounded out of breath, but more than that, there was an air of fatigue in her words and a tone of annoyance. “The Raven is a death trap. This ship actually stands a chance. Give the nice lady your attention and do as she says.”
“Who do you think you are, Willow? You’re not my mother. You’re not the face of our mission. I’m in charge.”
“Enough,” Emeric said, his tone firm and final. “Skyler, get in the pod. Asher, help him up. Anaya, see what’s wrong with him. Willow, sit down for goodness sake! You look like you’re gonna pass out!” He took a deep breath and let it out slowly. “We’re all adults here. Act like it!”
“I can’t get him in on my own.” Asher said quietly.
I raised an eyebrow at Emeric, and he walked over, bent down and picked up Asher’s legs, holding them firmly as both men lifted him back up into the pod.
“I’m hungry,” Skyler said as he settled into his cryo pod.
I heard everyone, including myself sigh in exasperation. I think we all thought the same thing at that moment: can we put him back into cryosleep? I scanned Skyler and reviewed his vital signs.
“He is much closer to being back to normal. It should be less than six hours now. His heart and lungs are no longer depressed from the extended cryosleep,” I said to everyone.
“Everything feels strange. I can’t see real well. Fix me, now!” Asher said.
Willow and I looked at each other. She shrugged at me, and instinctively I shrugged back. There was nothing to do but wait for Skyler to return to normal.
Everyone stood in silence for a few moments and watched the still squirming Skyler.
“Why aren’t you guys talking anymore? Is my hearing not working? I can hear my own voice. Say something.”
Each word that came from his mouth made me cringe slightly.
“Enough of this,” Emeric said. He moved swiftly to Skyler’s pod, opened the storage compartment beneath it and pulled out a syringe.
I am sure my eyes looked as wide as saucers as Emeric slammed the stim into Skyler’s arm and pulled the trigger.
“You can’t do that!” I exclaimed. “We don’t know what will happen.”
“You said his heart and lungs were mostly back to normal. I’m sure he’ll be fine. I can’t take him being an invalid anymore,” Emeric said.
Skyler popped out of his cryo pod again. This time he was standing strong on both feet. “Wow, that really gets the heart pumping, doesn’t it? What was that?”
Emeric gave me a look of confident success.
“It was a stim. It’s used to reduce the after effects of waking from cryosleep,” I replied.
“Can I have more? I feel like I could lift anything right now. Do you guys have a gym on this garbage can?” Skyler flexed, trying to show off his muscles. While he was much more muscular than Asher or Emeric, there was something about his physique that felt forced and fake.
Emeric’s mouth was tight, his eyes wide, and his face red. He opened his mouth as if to respond and then closed it again. He walked across the room, towards the bridge. “I have things to do,” he growled and then disappeared through the door.
I swear that the door slammed heavier than normal, punctuating Emeric’s frustration.
Asher cleared his throat and I turned to look at him. He stood a little slumped, his breathing deep, and his face was flushed. There was also the slight sheen of sweat on his forehead. “Engines,” Asher said, and shuffled off through the opposite door.
“Alright,” Skyler said, stretching, “what’s the plan?”
His shirt lifted as he stretched his arms above his head, showing off defined abs. His gaze caught mine and he winked. The look he gave me was slimy, like some grotesque come-on. It made my skin crawl, and I turned away.
“Skyler!” Willow snapped.
He glanced at her, “what? It’s a free universe, right? We’re consenting adults.”
“First off, no.” I said, sternly. “Secondly, I am your doctor and a scientist. And thirdly, not even if you were the last man in the universe.”
Willow smiled at me, gave me a little nod and looked towards the storage wall.
“What is up with you?” Skyler said, staring at Willow. His breathing was becoming laboured, most likely another effect of the stim. I quickly checked his oxygen saturation and he was at ninety two percent, so there was no need to worry.
“What are you talking about?” Willow replied, her head cocked to the side, hand on her hip. Her whole demeanour towards him was antagonistic in a way I hadn’t expected. It was similar to watching two siblings that despised each other.
“Why are you so…” he stumbled for words before settling on “normal?”

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