Part 7: Meditations
Dr. Bashir finished downloading the complex specifications for a Petrov Scanner from Starfleet Medical. He would need to modify one of his sickbay scanners temporarily. There was so little call for such a device that most doctors had never even seen one.
Captain Sisko had just met with him about Lieutenant James Ellison. Could the officer be genetically enhanced? How would one be able to find out? The only known way to test for it was with a Petrov Scanner. The whole situation made Julian uneasy. No one knew that he, himself, had been genetically altered as a child. His life as a Chief Medical Officer was built on a lie. The machine that could destroy his entire medical career would be up and running in his sickbay by tomorrow. He would have to use it to perhaps destroy another man’s future. How much of a hypocrite would that make him? It could easily be Dr. Bashir in the lieutenant’s place. And it wasn’t right or fair. Julian had had no say in the procedures done to him. His parents had decided he’d never be smart or gainly or successful on his own. They’d wanted a perfect son so they’d secretly taken him to a planet where enhancements could be done quietly. After that, Julian blossomed. He became intelligent, coordinated, renown.
Maybe the lieutenant hadn’t been given a choice, either. And from what he’d seen in the man’s medical records, if he were enhanced, it sounded like the job hadn’t been done as expertly as his own. Julian put his head in his hands. What was he going to do? How could he help Lieutenant Ellison?
“Hey, Julian! You ready?”
“Oh, um, just a minute, Miles. I need to put a few things away first.”
“Are you ok? You look like you’ve had a bad day. You know we can try out this new holo-program some other time if you’re not up to it.”
“I’m ok. I think I need something to relax me right now.”
“I don’t know how much relaxation you’re going to get at the Battle of Blood River.”
“Let me guess. We’ll be playing the heavily outnumbered Dorinthians who get annihilated by the Turgite army?”
“Have you noticed we always play the doomed underdogs?”
“Really? What do you think that says about us?”
“I don’t even want to know. Come on, let’s go.” Bashir walked out with his friend, leaving his problems behind him in the sickbay. At least for now.
“You want me to do what?”
“Come on, Jim. It won’t hurt. You light a few candles, clear your mind…”
“Look, Sandburg. I’m not into that mystical mumbo jumbo.”
“It’s just meditation techniques, not a religious ritual or anything. We’ve got to do this if we’re going to find out who shot at Theryl. With your overdeveloped senses, I bet your sensory memory is phenomenal. It would have to be to process and store all the extra input you receive. If you got a good look at the assassin and just don’t remember, you should be able to bring that image up with a little help. Meditation will give you focus. Lots of races meditate. You know, when I was studying on Vulcan, I met this priestess who could meditate for a week without taking a break to eat or drink. I tried to get her to show me how she did it, but I just couldn’t get the hang of it. I think it was a Vulcan thing. But you know that on Delta IV…”
“Sandburg? If I do this, will you be quiet?”
“Sorry. I get carried away sometimes.”
Jim smirked. “Really? I hadn’t noticed.”
Blair lit a couple of candles, turned the lights down a bit, and threw a couple pillows on the floor. “We might as well be comfortable.”
“You’d better hope these pillows don’t get dirty.”
“On this floor? I doubt it. You could eat off of this floor.” Blair looked around, noticing even in the dimmed light how immaculate the place was. “Is this a Starfleet thing, or were you always this obsessively neat?”
“Just get on with it.” Jim sat down on the pillow.
Blair plunked down on the other one. “Ok, ok. Now close your eyes. Clear your mind and relax.” They did some slow breathing exercises for a while until Blair thought Jim was ready. “The day of the shooting--think back to a few minutes before you noticed anything wrong. You were on the Promenade. Tell me what you sensed first.”
“The people all around me. They were too noisy. A woman haggling over the price of a Bajoran figurine. Two old men discussing politics. A young girl gushing to her friend about the new dress she got at Garak’s. A couple of drunk tourists laughing about how much they drank. Then there was something else…a humming sound I’d heard before. It was a Cardassian disruptor.”
“Ok. Now where was the sound coming from?”
“High up. Second level. I turned towards the sound.”
“Tell me what you saw when you turned around and looked up.”
“A hooded figure. A man. He reached into his cloak, pulling out a disruptor. He pointed it at someone on the lower level. I yelled for everyone to get down and I fired. The weapon flared in his hand. The light! It was so…”
“Stop. Take a deep breath. Did you see the hooded man’s face? Did you get a look at it?”
Jim blinked rapidly, coming out of his meditative state. “No. The face was always turned away from me. I guess I won’t be able to remember what I never saw in the first place. But I did catch a glimpse of part of his profile—he had small nose ridges. And he said something when I shot his weapon. I don’t know why I didn’t remember that before. He said, ‘Prophets!’ It was a Bajoran!”
“Oh, wow! A Bajoran would try to kill one of his own Vedics? Boy, that’ll get you some really bad karma.”
“Karma? Wait. Don’t tell me. I don’t want to know. It probably involves a long, strange story.”
Blair ignored the comment. “How do we catch this guy? Most of the people on the station are Bajoran. Even though he’s got one messed up hand, he could find some way to disguise it and blend in or just hide out for a while. Do you think the Constable will be able to trace his genetic material?”
“That’s iffy, Chief. There were a lot of people, mostly Bajoran, running around on the walkway before security got up there to cordon off the area. They probably contaminated the evidence.”
“Wouldn’t the explosion have…well…blown off pieces of the guy’s hand?”
“Not with a disruptor—its energy doesn’t work that way. It would have been more like a flash fire instead of an explosion. Our attempted assassin is walking around with a badly charred, but intact, hand.” Jim paused for a moment. He had an idea. “I think we should try tracking him from a different route.”
“What do you mean?”
“Disruptors are illegal almost everywhere, so they aren’t just laying around. The guy probably bought it on the station—easier than trying to smuggle it aboard. We could try to trace the disruptor to the person. He’ll also need to get a new weapon. And there’s one place on DS9 where illegal activity always seems to thrive—Quark’s."