Disclaimer: Don't own it… don't claim to… don't plan to… don't sue.The EMH Program (Yay!)
Starring: Voyager's Emergency Medical Hologram! (Woo-hoo!)
And… those other people…
The artificial carnation had drooped a little to the left again, throwing off the whole flower arrangement. Voyager's EMH regarded the vase sternly, trying to prop the rebel plant into its appropriate place. He stepped back to admire the bouquet when the carnation tipped over… again.
"Computer, replicate another carnation." The doctor grumbled. "And make sure it's not so flimsy this time!"
The new, improved, sturdier flower was placed into the vase, and the mischievous carnation was thrown aside as garbage. The arrangement was perfect now!
"That should brighten up sickbay!" The EMH concluded briskly, looking proud of himself.
"Ah, Doctor," B'Elanna greeted him as she strode into sickbay.
"Good morning, Lieutenant." The EMH replied, anxiously waiting for her to notice the decorating he had just finished.
"It's 0900," She continued walking, passing by the floral arrangement without a second glance. "And you had me scheduled for a checkup."
"Of course!" The hologram moved himself next to the vase, hoping to bring attention to it. "I was just thinking… does sickbay seem different to you today?"
B'Elanna inhaled slowly as she scanned her surroundings. "No. But you would know better… you spend more time in here."
The doctor escorted B'Elanna out of sickbay, declaring her and the expected baby to be in perfect health. The doors closed, and sickbay was abandoned again… except for the holographic resident.
"Computer," The EMH sat down, feeling discouraged. "Begin Chief Medical Officer's log."
"Activated." The mechanical voice said.
The doctor cleared his throat a few times before beginning. "Although I have spent an extensive amount of time trying to make sickbay more aesthetically pleasing to my patients… well, the changes seem to have gone unnoticed so far." He got up and began pacing thoughtfully. "Not that Lieutenant Torres is the defining authority on decorative matters. Have you seen her and Lieutenant Paris' quarters? And her tastelessness transcends mere decorating skills." He began waving his arms in expression. "She's blunt, proud… and can be a remarkably difficult person. I wouldn't even put up with her if I didn't know how much she depends on me."
Cheered by his last statement, the EMH plucked the vase of flowers from its shelf and started searching for a more conspicuous spot. "It's common knowledge," He continued recording the log. "That if it weren't for me, she and Tom would never have gotten together. It was my… expert advice that gave them the confidence to pursue a relationship. Of course, they won't admit something like that because they're alike in that aspect… proud. But I know they'd be lost if not for me."
During the course of the ranting, the new carnation had tilted into an unattractive angle. The doctor could only sigh and begin again.
"Fix it!" It was already a busy morning for B'Elanna Torres. She was occupied with a multitude of minor glitches and errors, but she would have to remedy them all before Voyager was operating healthily again. "Just… fix it."
"It's beyond my expertise," An ensign explained to her. "I think it's going to require your attention."
B'Elanna collected herself. "Then you're going to have to add it to the list. I've already got enough work to keep me busy until we drift back to the Alpha Quadrant."
"It can't be that bad." Chakotay approached her, looking mildly amused.
"Commander," She gritted her teeth. "You're just in time…" She flipped through a stack of PADDs distractedly. "To do this!" She handed one of them to him. "Now do you think it's funny?"
Chakotay looked at the PADD seriously. "What makes you think I can fix the plasma manifold?"
"Just do it… it's not like you've got anything more important to do."
"True… engineering is the only busy place on the ship today." He smiled 'that' smile. A random ensign girl spotted 'the' smile and fainted dead away.
B'Elanna watched her drop, disgust playing on her features. "Somebody take her to sickbay."
"What's that for?" Harry was slumped across his console. There was nothing to do today… except maybe in engineering.
Tom was putting the finishing touches on an adjustment he had made to his seat. "This is called a seatbelt! I tried to model it after the kinds they had in the twentieth century. Quaint, isn't it?"
"There is no need for that on a Federation starship." Tuvok said distastefully.
"Plus, the captain's going to be really mad when she sees how you've disfigured her bridge." Harry glanced towards the captain's ready-room as if he expected her to emerge that very second.
"Nah." Tom sat in his chair and tested the belt. "In fact, she'll probably want one for herself after she sees how useful this is. I wonder why nobody ever thought of it before this?"
"Your optimism has no basis in logic. The captain will not approve." Tuvok was only engaging in this conversation because he was sick of watching the little lights on his console blink on and off. It had been such a boring day. That was about all he had gotten to do so far.
"I think it looks dumb." Harry sniffled.
"You're just jealous…" Tom said, clicking and un-clicking the seatbelt joyfully. "Because you don't have one. Heck, you don't even have a chair!"
Harry looked stern. "Even if I did, I still wouldn't want a seatbelt for it."
A muffled scream was heard from the captain's ready-room. Tom, Harry, and Tuvok abandoned their argument to see what was going on in there.
"I already had a headache… did I really need this?" Janeway complained to the three officers that had came to her rescue.
"So you ordered coffee from the replicator," Tuvok was gathering the facts blandly. "But you got these instead?"
Tom had a pile of the buttons in his hand. "But why… rank buttons? Why did the replicator decide to make hundreds of rank buttons?"
(A/N: I grew up calling them buttons… live with it.)
"Maybe it thinks today is a good day for a promotion?" Harry said hopefully. He put his hand on his collar, lamenting the fact that he only had one button… after all this time.
Janeway laughed good-naturedly. "Thanks Ensign, I needed that."
"But I'm serious!" Harry whined. "Tom got promoted and he's a criminal!"
"Hey, watch it!" Tom said sensitively.
"I just think it's time all my hard work paid off." Harry folded his arms childishly. "It's not like you don't have enough buttons to go around."
Janeway moved a few of the buttons that had overflowed out of the replicator with her foot. "It's not that I don't appreciate you. You just have to understand that there is a certain… structure to a command chain."
Harry looked like he might cry. "The computer did this to taunt me!"
"Hee hee hee." The computer commented nastily.
"Oh, no." Tom despaired. "Not this again. Why can't we have a normal computer like all the other starships?"
"Why can't I have a normal crew like all the other computers?" The computer mocked.
"Why can't I ever have a nice peaceful day?" Janeway wailed. "I never get to sleep in! I never get to goof off! I never get a vacation day!"
"I'll be captain for you!" Harry offered.
Tuvok shook his head, almost rolling his eyes. "If you had been paying attention for the last six years, you would have noticed that Commander Chakotay would be in charge if the captain was out of commission."
"I know." Harry's eyes welled up again. "I hate Chakotay! What makes him so special?"
"Well there is 'that' smile…" Janeway mused. She cleared her throat uncomfortably upon noticing the evil looks coming from Harry.
"I knew it!" Harry stormed. "It's because he's better looking than me, isn't it? That's not fair!"
"I know!" The computer chimed in, sounding choked up. "I have my charms too, you know? I can be charming!"
Janeway looked perplexed. "I was kidding. Getting promoted has nothing to do with being good looking!"
"Of course not!" Tom nodded seriously. "Or else I would be captain!"
"If it were based upon appearance," Tuvok looked thoughtful. "I would be the highest ranking officer. Not you Lieutenant Paris."
"This is ridiculous." Janeway looked faint. "And this is the kind of crap I put up with everyday… I do need a vacation!"
The three officers turned to her in disbelief.
"You mean," Harry ventured timidly. "You want some time off?"
The captain considered shrewdly. "I think I deserve it."
"Wow." Tom smiled a little. "Well, I think it's a great idea… do you want me to start working on the arrangements for you? There's nothing else to do today."