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The Smell

Posted on Wednesday March 10, 2021 @ 10:43am by T'Poe [Arnie] & Madeleine De Saint Castine

Mission: Lower Decks
Location: Sickbay
Timeline: Shortly After Launch

The good thing about having such a small ship and crew was that it meant it was easy for Maddie to keep on top of everything Sickbay related. The downside of such a small ship and crew was that more often than not, since launch, Maddie had found herself with little to nothing to do. Medicals were up to date. Sickbay was tidy. Supplies had been inventoried twice. Now, Maddie found herself sitting at her desk, a cup of hot chocolate in hand as she read from a text book. Boredom had driven her to self study.

T'Poe entered the small sickbay looking for the Doctor. "Excuse me Doctor I was hoping you could help me with something."

The voice caught her by surprise, the text book falling from her knees where it had been resting against the desk as she grappled with the mug of hot chocolate. After a moment of fumbling, she set the mug down on the desk and laughed, turning her attention toward T'Poe. "Sorry, you surprised me," she smiled as she stood up. "I've gotten used to the sound of my own voice. What can I do for you?"

T'Poe glanced around the room as if making sure they were alone. "I'm sure you're aware Doctor, that Vulan's have a substantially stronger olfactory senses than most humanoids." She paused for a moment, "to borrow a human expression I'll be blunt, the crew stink." She said, "I've looked into the environmental controls and they're functioning within standard, I postulate it may be a combination of the smaller volume of the ship and perhaps individuals with particular robust odor, but I have found the smell quite bothersome to the point it's interfering with my ability to focus. I was hoping you may be able to prescribe a nasal numbing agent to help alleviate the problem."

The bluntness with which T'Poe spoke took Maddie by surprise. "I... uhhh." her first reaction was to check herself for body odour, but she refrained. "Sorry, I wasn't expecting those exact words." She paused for a moment, contemplating. "There are a few options that we can consider. There is a medication we can use to dull the scent receptors, but there has been some evidence that particularly in Vulcans, it can cause increased sensitivities in other ways. We can also see about increasing the filtration on the ships environmental controls." She paused again. "You can always consider essential oils, especially if there is a scent that you find particularly pleasing."

"I prefer Vulcan incense which I use in my private cabin, out of consideration to my crewmates I felt it was inappropriate to use in common spaces." T'Poe said, "I had previously used one called Dextrahathdin to some effect during survival training, as well as during a previous assigned with Starfleet where we were assigned to a small outpost with limited facilities."

"We can definitely use the Dextrahathdin if you've had success with that," Maddie said with a smile. "An extended release would probably be better to give you a longer coverage, and as I said I'll speak to the Captain about increasing sensitivity on the ships bio filters as well, to see if that helps." She picked up a PaDD and made some notes. "Sometimes the most simple solutions are the best. When I was in medical school I spent some time on a body farm, it was an... interesting... experience, but the stench at times was often difficult to deal with. We used to carry essential oils in our pockets. A tiny bit of essential oil just on the inside of your nostrils can help offset any unwelcome smells without being overly obtrusive to the rest of the crew."

T'Poe tilted her head to one side, "Admittedly I had not considered direct application, most of the essential oil use I have encountered is in the use of diffusers to apply them to room. Most of the application directly to the individual were based in unproven healing applications. I will look into the use of it in addition to the Dextrahathdin. Was there a particular oil you found particularly effective in your agricultural work?"

"Agricultural...?" The look on Maddie's face could have been best described as thoroughly confused. "OH!" Understanding dawned. "Body farm... no, not agricultural... it's more..." she bit her bottom lip, contemplating the best way to explain it. "A body farm is a research facility where we studied body decomposition rates and how it's affected by different elements, environments or factors."

T'Poe looked at the Doctor for a moment, "Ah, I apologize for my ignorance on the matter, the Vulcan term is so-hecallktar, it would most directly translated as to field to study decay. I did briefly conduct a project in one many many years ago." She said. "I have found peppermint can be a quite good at masking odours, and I admit I do enjoy the peppermint tea that comes from your homeworld."

"Oh! Just a moment!" She disappeared into her office at the back of sickbay and returned a moment later with a small vial. "See if you like this?" she asked, offering it to T'Poe. "It's a special blend I sometimes warm when I'm meditating or doing yoga. It's a mix of Peppermint, Chamomile and Lavender."

T'Poe opened the vial, she wafted it towards her nose with the practiced skill of scientist. The wafted wasn't needed with the strong oils and her vulcan sense. "Well it is certainly preferable to smell of the crew." She replied closing the vial, "I will try using that blend as well."

Grabbing a hypospray, Maddie loaded it with a cartridge she had replicated while she was retrieving the oil and handed it across to T'Poe. "Try the oil first, and I will definitely look into the environmental systems. This is a spray for the ER Dextrahathdin. If the oil doesn't help quickly, try the hypo. I recommend taking it as early as possible in the morning so it gives you maximum relief during your shift. It may be a bit hit and miss for the first couple of weeks while your body adjusts, but in a few weeks, if you keep taking it the same time every day, it'll give you all around coverage. If you start taking it, please just drop me a quick message and let me know so I can record it?" Maddie asked with a smile.

"Thank you Doctor, I will try the oil first and keep you apprised of any changes to my medical routine." The Vulcan said with a small nod.

"Of course," Maddie responded with a nod. "That's what I'm here for. If you need anything else just let me know, my door is always open,"

With a final nod the Vulcan departed to return to her quarters.


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Comments (1)

By Canaan Serine on Sunday March 28, 2021 @ 1:52pm

I snorted a bit at the "... agricultural work" comment by T'Poe - Very funny, indeed!