Paul Gadzikowski


In Thy Image


"Hmm," the Time Lord said at first, when apprised of the EMH's situation. Janeway was still getting used to the Doctor's new, ninth personality, with its quiet confidence and introspection. The first Doctor Janeway had known had been constant motion, and yet idleness itself in comparison to the near-manic spontaneity of the next. Probably a better role model for the girl Padme, his assistant? student? from some long ago, far away galactic republic, yet still Doctorishly eccentric with his long black hair and black velvet frock coat and suit.

"Will you plead my case?" the EMH asked.

"'Plead your case'?" the Doctor repeated. "Yes, I think perhaps it ought to come to that."

"Our EMH is scheduled to be shipped out to a mining colony within the week, Doctor," said Janeway, attempting as she always did while the Time Lord visited to use the title doctor without ambiguity. "We must act quickly if we're to -"

"Well, what makes your hologram special?" Padme interrupted.

"I beg your pardon." The EMH was stunned and hurt by the question.

"Yes ..." But the Doctor seemed to think she had a point. "Are his experiences all that much more unique than those of Michael O'Sullivan, or even Lord Chaotica?"

"I do save lives," said the EMH, with the return of some of his usual prickliness. "And 'uniqueness' is a binary condition. Something is unique or it isn't, you can't have degrees of -"

"Starfleet already knows your record," said Janeway. "So your uniqueness is a point we may need to demonstrate another way."

"Well, if you take away the saving of lives thing," huffed the EMH, "I don't know whether Lord Chaotica is all that much less special than I."

"Exactly," said the Doctor. "Here's what we're going to do ..."


"What!?" exploded Admiral Paris.

No less inflamed, the Starfleet JAG repeated, "The crew of Voyager has filed a class-action suit against Starfleet, suing for full civil rights on behalf of all holograms in Starfleet service!"


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