Nurse's Journey: Live Long and Prosper
Nurse glanced up from her work on the computer. She worked in this big city hospital ICU for over 6 months. It was both emotionally grueling and physically exhausting. Many patients were only a breath from death, and the staff strove mightily to prolong their lives. With their skill, dedication, and the resources of modern science, they sometimes were almost too successful. She thought about the patient assigned to her today: Mr. Sarek, a man rescued – too late – from a burning house. His entire body was encased in bandages from head to toe from over 90% second and third degree total body surface burns. A special team of doctors was brought in to coordinate his care. Another team of pharmacists personally mixed the medications and fluids she administered to him. He was on a ventilator and his vital signs parameters were way beyond what was considered normal. Yet he hung tenuously on to life. To add to the mystery, the man reportedly had no next of kin. She struggled to remember: I've heard of that name somewhere, she thought to herself.
She went back to her charting. "Excuse me, Madam." A quiet voice interrupted her work. She looked up and gasped. The perfect replica of Mr. Spock from the old television series "Star Trek" stood before her. He possessed the arched eyebrows and pointed ears that she remembered, and he was dressed in the familiar blue and black uniform that she recalled he wore in the original programs. She stared at him, speechless. "I would like to inquire of the condition of the patient in room 3, Mr. Sarak."
This was too much. She finally found her voice. "I can't give out any information on that patient," she replied. "As far as we know, there is no next of kin."
"I am his son, Spock," the man replied.
"Oh no, you're not." Nurse insisted. "This is a crazy joke. You're a television character from an old TV series."
The Spock person raised one eyebrow the same way she recalled the television character doing. "Indeed," he remarked, "I am Spock, and I do not joke."
Nurse started to get up to go get her supervisor. She's not going to believe this, she thought. The Spock character stopped her with his hands on her head. "I have to have the information," he murmured.
She was immobilized. His hands on her head were firm, but amazingly gentle in their touch. She felt peaceful as he peered deeply into her eyes. Was this the Vulcan mind meld? She also noticed that everything in the room stopped. This was getting crazier by the minute.
He released her hold and backed away. "Thank you." As he turned away, a shimmering beam appeared in the room and was replaced by another "Star Trek" character she recognized as Dr. McCoy. "Bones?" she asked, referring to his nickname on the show.
"How do you know me?" he queried.
"It was on the TV show." She started to answer.
He waved his hand in dismissal, and turned to the Spock character. "We don't have much time." They went into room 3 where Nurse's patient lay. She followed them, and watched Dr. McCoy place an instrument over Mr. Sarak's body. She thought it looked like the tricorder from the show.
"What are you doing?" she asked.
He moved the instrument quickly over the patient's body. "I am trying to repair what your archaic medical therapy cannot," he replied impatiently.
She looked around the unit. Everything was frozen except for them. It was as if the people were suspended in time. "What has happened to everyone? What is going on?"
"This is temporary," Spock assured her. "Everything will be back to normal shortly."
Dr. McCoy interjected. "We have to beam your father aboard the ship immediately. I cannot treat him here." Spock nodded and brought out what looked like a communicator. "Beam us aboard, Mr. Scott."
"Wait, wait," Nurse interrupted. "You mean, the Enterprise? The one on the show?"
"That is correct." Spock answered. "Unfortunately, my father was involved in a time warp, which caused him to be transported back to the 21st century. We were able to come back to get him, but we have little time."
So that was the where she remembered the name Sarek. "So all of this is real?" She could not believe her eyes or ears. "How did we get everything so accurate in the TV show?"
"I think it has to do with a character named Roddenberry who spent quite a bit of time aboard Federation Starships," Dr McCoy replied. "We have to go." He turned to Spock. "Should I give her something to make her forget this happened?"
Spock regarded Nurse intently for a moment. He shook his head. "No." Was it something he discerned during the mind meld? "She will be fine without it." He spoke to her, but Nurse could not hear him for the noise of the transporter. Nurse saw the shimmering of the transporter beam, and the Star Trek characters disappeared. Wow, she thought.
She rubbed her eyes and found herself in her bed. She sighed with disappointment. It was a dream after all. It seemed so real. After a moment of thought, she recalled Spock's last words to her; "Live long and prosper."