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Vincent pulled the ship over the designated gate on the fighter docking ring and latched to the docking moors. The ship descended into the bay on the landing platform and stopped on the fifth deck of the ring.
    Vincent and Marcus felt the front gear moor tug the ship on its track, pulling it into the pod that they were registered to. A medical team emerged from the doorway of the bay and made their way to the back of the ship where the automated system opened the fighters hatch. The team of three medics quickly made their way into the ship. The first medic swiftly squeezed past Vincent and slid down the ramp, evading the monitors and keyboards as she made her way toward Marcus.
    Marcus was unbuckling when the medic appeared to his left. “Jesus christ... you scared the shit out of me.” he said, his voice barely audible through the helmet.
    The medic quickly groped near Marcus’s neck, detaching the helmet and removing it from his head. “You’re required to cooperate...”she said quickly, in a soft yet stern voice as she pulled down an eyelid with her thumb. “... both of you were under a lot of gravitational force and we have to ascertain that there is no internal damage.”
    “Well that’s dandy.” replied Marcus, smiling at her gently as she pulled down the other eyelid and flashed a light into his eye.
    “Did you lose time after or before the g-LOC?”
    “I think so, I don’t remember much before or after the explosion, I remember chasing the mine, and shooting a few times, but then it gets a little blurry until we’re back in the firefight with everyone else. Log stated I destroyed the target but I can’t remember that happening.”
    “Does your head hurt?” She asked.”
    “Yeah, feels like I got hit by a Maglev.”
    “You have subconjunctival hemorrhaging due to the trauma during g-LOC, we’re going to have to scan you for brain damage.”
    “So what exactly does that first part mean?”
    “Well.” she said, putting the flashlight away and fishing into a bag at her knees. “It means you have hemorrhaging in your eyes, they’re going to be really bloodshot for about a week. That’s not a big deal though” She said as she now ran a scanner across his forehead, staring at a monitor it was connected to. “The big problem is here...” she explained, pointing at the screen with her thumb. “You’ve got a pretty bad concussion, and there’s a dark spot here that I’m not too sure of, I think we’ll have to bring you to the lab immediately.”
    “That might be my plate.” Marcus said as he unbuckled another strap around his legs and pushed the monitors and keyboards toward the walls of the cockpit. “When I was in the corps I had a one on one interview with a frag grenade. I took most of the shrapnel in my shoulders but a big chunk went right through my helmet and got lodged in my skull. I have a plate keeping it together now, so that’s probably the dark spot you’re seeing, but I’ll go with you anyway.”
    “Alright, we’re required to put you in a stretcher to minimize any unknown internal damage.”
    “I’m not sure I like that” he said, laughing a bit as he attempted to stand up in the cramped cockpit. “On second thought...” he said, as he sat back down, visibly pained. “... I think I’ll take up that offer.”
    Vincent and Marcus were both put on stretchers and brought out of the fighter, tied down and wearing neck braces. They were wheeled to one of the central lifts that brought them to the mainframe concourse. Once their they were pulled into the first floor of the nearby medical center and were quickly admitted after the medical team swiped their identification tags into the system. They were separated at this point, Vincent went to one elevator that brought him to the twentieth floor of the medical tower whilst Marcus entered a different elevator. Where he went from there was something Vincent did not know, all he could see was the staff hunched over him and the steady passing of ceiling lights and door frames. He didn’t have much time to ponder over this however, the medical staff quickly stripped him of his flight suit and hefted him onto a table where he was sedated and scanned thoroughly for any internal damage. He heard the muffled speaking of the medical team as his head began to feel lighter and colder. His eyes became heavy and he was forced to close them. His muscles were relaxed to the point where his head went limp in the neckbrace, unresponsive to his efforts at moving. He heard an automated door hiss open followed by a strangely familiar voice.
“So, I hear he performed well, is he under yet?”
“Yes Doctor Strauss, he should be, if not he will be in a very short time.”
“Good, let’s find out if he’s been ticking the way they want him to. If not, let’s see if we can find a way to make him tick the way they want him to.”

The End

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