AWD #245: I'd Like to Give This Idea a Try
I'd Like to Give This Idea a Try
Summary: Samtara and Mahasti agree to have a look into Toby's skinjob detection plan.
Date: 08/Sep/2013
Related Logs: All in the Smell?
Toby Samtara Mahasti 
Battlestar Orion — Deck 3 — CMO's Office
The CMO's office is not huge, like most offices on the Orion. Nine feet by nine feet, most of the floorspace is taken up by a desk and file cabinets.
AWD #245:

It's a little before lunch and Toby is due to be on shift shortly. Expecting a busy day with the buzz that's been going reound the pilots theis last week or so he taking the opportunity while he can to stick his head into sickbay on a CMO hunt. The vibrant colours in the bruise around his eye and the side of his face mark it out to be a couple of day sold now, rather than fresh, but the nurse on reception still takes a moment to peer at it and ask if he needs assistance before they'll confirm that Dr Nadir is infact present, and point towards the CMO's office. Armed with that knowledge the deckie gives a brief word of thanks then heads as indicated, knocking wice before he puses the door open and sticks his head in to check that said CMO isn't in the middle of something vitally important.

If someone had told Dr. Nadir that half the job of the CMO would be pushing paper she might never have accepted the promotion in the first place. The large board tacked to one of the walls has a list of staff names, time slots, patient names and medical short hand for what procedures are on the board as 'routine' should the war not interrupt with the schedule. As it typically does. The coffee pot that sits in the corner holds half a pot of coffee, and the cup on Nadir's desk is empty (again) as she works her way through the last of the requisition forms and paperwork. She waves her right hand in a 'come in' gesture toward the door as she weaves through the last of the trick questions on the bloody form and looks up, at last, blinking to focus her eyes on something other than the fine print. "Crewman Shackleton," she says after a moment of eye-blinking and waves that same hand to invite Toby to take a seat, "you're looking rather colorful at the moment. Have you been using your face to make points while debating things with other crew members?" is wondered.

Toby is, it must be said, entirely used to comments along those lines. They make up a large amoutn of the conversations he'd had over the past coupld of days, in varying degrees of crudeness and sarcasm. He has a usual reply down to pat, but since Sam is both a doctor, and an officer he ditches it in favour of the eer so slightly mor einformative, "Sporting injury." That done, he takes the seat offered and eyes the paperwork very briefly, mostly just glad that it's not his. He doesn't then wait for any preamble, or small talk before getting down to the point, he's been tryin got catch her when she's free and not dealing with any patients for a few days and he doesn't want to miss this chance. Starting wuickly, and with signs of perhaps enthusiasm or excitment in his tone he asks, "Am I right in thinking you're heading up the work to try and find a way to detect the skinjobs? Only I was watching a rubbish old vid a few days abck and I had an idea."

Nadir leans back slightly in the chair, setting the pen aside and reaching for the coffee cup, "Would you care for some coffee?" is offered as her brain - quite obviously, from the thoughtful expression on her face - considering his words as she forms her reply. "Yes, I am," she confirms then with a measured nod. "I've a box full of suggestions from the crew, at large, everything from spacing them and seeing if they survive as a sort of pressure/immersion test to dissecting them and everything - running the gambit - in between. But I'd be glad for more ideas."

"Got to find 'em before we can space 'em," Toby replies with a shrug, shaking his head at the offer of coffee. There's really very little pause though before he's off again. "It was one of those disaster type films, no real plot, but it was on as background noise as it were. Anyway, there was a scene where some of the minor characters were hunting through the rubble of a building as some important person or other had apparently been inside and they were using search and rescue dogs. You know the type? Trained to sniff out surviviors so the rescues know where to dig, those ones." Now there's a puse, although it's only for breath so if Sam was wanting to get a word in edgeways she may be disapointed. "Got me thinking, if they can smell so much more than us, could they be trained to differenciate? Walk past he dog, if it goes nuts or barks or watever then you have a toaster in disguise. I spoke to one of the Marines and he reckons they have dogs down below."

Mahasti is quiet, cracking on the door frame with her knuckles. She stands there, looking like shit and hung over. She smiles a bit, looking curious at the conversation. She's carrying a plastic bag full of some greenery - stinging nettle. A small spotted deer pelt is over her shoulder, annnnd two little deer fangs are tied to some sinew around her neck "Anything private going on or can I come in and make a pot of decent coffee?" she asks softly, careful not to over invade without permission.

Nadir considers Toby's words as he speaks, finishing the dregs of coffee from her cup in fact and turning to refill her mug as he explains this idea and facing the door and Toby once more when she's topped off her mug. "I'd have to know more about how a dog does what they do in order to know if this would work. The problem, of the problems, inherent in this situation is that the skinned models are almost identical to humans, save for what amount to - in general terms - augmentations to their abilities, physical and mental. The differences are so small, so subtle in most respects, that trained medical personnel didn't detect that they weren't entirely human, those that infiltrated the fleet I mean." She waves her free hand toward Mahasti, "Come on in, and grab a cup," she invites Mahasti while frowning a little at the spotted deer pelt, "and we'd need the right kind of dogs as well. And volunteers from the skinned models in our fleet to participate in this program," she muses, tone thoughtful.

"Exactly Doc," Toby starts to Sam, "we can't detect the differences, but they can apparently smell all sorts of things we can't, it's whay they're used for it. Saves time and covers the area far quicker than man-made tech does. Got to be worth a shot surely?" Glancing over his shoulder as there's another voice at the door he gives Mahasti a quick nod and a "Hey Doc," before he turns back to Sam, obvious mid-flow and enthusiastic. "Not sure exactly what dogs they have down there, but the marines say they have some at least." There is then the briefest of pases at the talk of volunteer skinjobs before he finishes with, "word has it though that one of 'em is workin gon the project with you. THe marine I spoke to thought they were in charge of it infact. Surely if they're helping out then they'll give it a try and if not, does that not also suggest that maybe they might be scared it will work?" He does not it seem, trust the idea of a toaster working at uch a high level in the scheme to detect toasters, although that's not really something he personally can do much about.

Mahasti eyes Sam "Do you have a clean bag I could borrow?" she makes a zip gesture, taking her time to wash her hands before starting a fresh pot of coffee - with the good coffee. Toby is regarded "I can't smell a difference between them and I'm pretty sensitive." she opens a compartment, putting the nettle in it, for washing and processing as needed. She takes three mugs, setting one down for Sam, one for Toby and one for herself, pouring coffee in all three of the mugs. A small jug of fresh milk from her side pouch is set down infront of Toby "Its raw so at your own risk - I watched it come out of the cow." she warns, smiling slightly. She observes Sam for a long moment "I am sure Knox could be persuaded but I'm not sure how effective such a program would be. If you can find the dogs I don't see a problem with the idea, right Sam?" she asks, sitting down gently.

"In theory, Sgt. Knox and Dr. Tamsin only recognize the other skinned models that they are introduced to while operating in this current body and mind. It seems like a fire-wall situation to prevent data from being shared against operational orders," Nadir replies, sounding still thoughtful and ever logical. Overly logical? maybe. "Dogs, search and rescue dogs, can smell cadavers and discern between living victims and dead ones. Between bombs and explosives, drugs and other substances," handing a bag to Mahasti as she speaks and eyeing the jug of what has to be raw milk with a touch of a shudder before she continues. "The skinned models are one thing, there's a finite number of models up and running around while the actual sum of the models running around is unknown, there's only so many faces. The skinned models are just one issue, and I'd like to give this idea a try. The centurions remaining a problem to which I have no immediate answer. Body-jacking a human so the centurion parasite can control it, puppet like," that's as far as she gets before the sheer revulsion of the idea silences her, again, and the rubs her fingertips over the bridge of her nose, exhaling after a moment. "One issue at a time then. You're right. Sgt. Knox will likely help."

Toby waves off the cup set infront of him in, exactly as he's declined Sam's offer previously. That done, he seems to entirely forget the cup's existance. There's a couple of places where it looks like he might be about to jump in an interupt one of the doctors but somehow he manages to keep a hold of himself and wait until they're done. "Thanks Doc," he replies enthusiastically, once Sam says she's willing to give the idea a try, "it might not work, but it's so simple that it might just and I figured we'd be fools not to at least test it." Grinning a little he then continues, "we're working on the Centurians. Got a plan that might work although it involves certain tricks that generally require Presidential authorisation, and, well.." he doesn't finish that, given how public the news of the President's fate has been.

Mahasti grins at Toby "I'm sorry darling, he's not available to do that for you." she offers to her favorite decky. She takes the milk, handing it to a nurse "Hey take this to the kitchen staff for me - Tell them its Dr. Nasreen's milk - they'll pasteurize it for me and seperate the cream and let me make it into butter on my own time." she licks her lip, looking terribly pleased at the idea of having fresh cream butter. "Thank you." she offers. There's some comment about Chili that causes a happy smile. Without any fussing she takes her coffee to drink it black, Toby's spare cup is taken and set infront of her, she places her deer pelt - nice and cleaned up and prepared for whatever she has in mind to do to it, quietly zipping it up most of the way before squishing the air out. "I find it interesting that the direwolves attacked Lleufer and not Naomi." she comments, off handedly. There's a hint of 'I want to punch that bitch in the face' in her voice.

"I've never been a fan of the notion that the 'Ends justify the means'," Nadir remarks quietly as she looks from Toby's face to Mahasti's and back again. "But that was before the war, this war, that is. before they started stealing bodies, capturing children and using them as puppets, before they started murdering us to get what they want. Unlimited supplies of endless faces to walk around with, bodies to move around with. I think that the executive branch of our government needs to keep it's nose out of the actual work begin done so they can use the 'plausible deniability' clause for their re-election campaigns," and if she sounds grim and cynical.. "I'd be wondering why they attacked one not the other as well, if I could figure out a way to duplicate the incident safely and field test theories. But there are few safe ways to do so."

"If the direwolves could differenciate, then here's hoping their cousins can too," Toby offers, not knowing enough about the circumstances of the attak on the surface to speculate if it's likely just circumstancial or not. Mahasti is given a nod and he adds, "and even if he was, I'm not so sure he'd have given us the go-ahead. There's that tiny complication of him having been a filthy, collaborating traitor after all." It would seem that htis particular crew member is not at all sorry to see Adir taken out. As the conversation starts to turn towards politics, or maybe political philosophy he starts to push his chair back and stand. "You want me to leave this with you Doc?" he asks Sam, "or is there anything you need me to be doing for it as well?"

Mahasti takes a breath "I don't think anyone is getting re-elected anymore." she leans on the desk, taking a deep sip of her coffee "I'm changing every day in opinions. I get touched." she reaches to touch Sam's wrist, squeezing once. "I think our time of understanding is coming. Scientifically. Physically. Mentally." she offers to both Toby and Sam, considering Toby "I want you to keep poking at the dog thing. I want to run some tests. You admittedly hit a curious nerve." she admits, grimming a bit. "Our dogs are just domesticated wolves." she offers to Toby. "You are welcome to stay." she offers.

"Could you introduce me to anyone, planet side, that has a dog or dogs that might be right for this sort of assignment?" Nadir wonders of Toby in return. "And, now, I wonder if we have anyone in the fleet or the civilian population that would know how to train dogs to do this sort of thing. And, in the same vein, could the direwolves be trained for it. but we don't have /that/ kind of time right now. But going forward, if there's a forward, if there's a future, then yeah, direwolf pups would be one area to concentrate on." She gives a glimpse of a smile to Mahasti, "What we understand, and what we think we understand, are always to very disparate things."

Toby glances briefly to Mahasti, but answers Sam first. "Don't know about down below, but I spoke with Sergeant Ynyr about it so he's probably your best place to start. Beyond that, I dunno, but I'm sure if you put out a shipwide to ask then someone will come forward." Then back to Mahasti he offers, "I'll do what I can, just need to ask, but I reckon it's down to the dogs and toasters, neither of which are my speciality I'm afraid." Then, to the point about staying he just shakes his head, "ghad a list of jobs to do as long as my arm at the end of my shift yesterday and it's only going to have grown since. Thanks for your time though Docs." That said, and carefully avoiding any further politics he's heading for the door. Mission acomplished.

Mahasti ponders "One of the farm boys. Maybe yeah." she smiles. She watches Toby "Hey. Come by and chat with me casually sometime." she offers "I am going to have a lot of home cooked meals up and around here as things heat up. More and more wounded means its heating up. So come grab a meal with me and whoever is laying around. Try to keep it from being you, okay?" she eyes around, standing up to gently wrap her hand around Toby's shoulder, giving him a squeeze there before settling back in to just sit with Sam, resting.

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