AWD #562: Ale and Pearson Chat
Ale and Pearson Chat
Summary: Captain Alejandro Salazar finally gets a moment to speak quietly with Pearson and get to know her a little better.
Date: 04/01/2017 (OOC Date)
Related Logs: None
Alejandro Pearson 
Ready Room, Deck 2 - Battlestar Orion
Capable of seating every member of the wing with space to spare in its stadium organization, the Ready Room has more than two hundred seats and is the largest room on the ship dedicated to single briefings. Sections of desks were manufactured specifically for this and wrap the width of each level of seating, rolling leather seats positioned at even points through each row. The head of the room has a small dais with a podium for the briefer and on the wall behind it are a pair of large LCD screens. The walls have the tenant squadrons' patches painted on individual panels as well as a Kill Board up to the left side of the dais and podium, the Training Board on the other side to log progress.
Sat Jul 22 11:47:12 2006

Captain Salazar, for lack of a better name while his old callsign is to be replaced with something newer and grittier, is walking slowly back and forth in the Ready Room. Alejandro has an electronic slate in hand and gunfootage has been paused on the screen. The lights are currently up rather than dimmed. 'Hobo' as he had formerly bee called has a grim set to his face as he goes through a list of his current available pilots, a great frakking many of them being Nines. Focused on what he is doing and thinking, he pauses to make some notation on his data file and licks his lips. A glance at the gun footage he was viewing and then he steps over to change it over to another pilot's cam. It looks like stuff from Blue Axe as well as bits more recent. Probably still trying to learn who the frak flies like what and get to better know the pilots in his squadron now everything has shifted around. Again.

Carrying a stack of schematics tucked under one arm and a sealed thermos held in the opposite hand, Pearson is weaving her way through the corridor, avoiding collisions at all cost until stepping into the ready room. She pauses just inside the hatch, expression startled, eyes narrowing subtly with a look on her face of curiosity and speculation before she glances toward the screen then back again. "Captain," with a cordial nod, seeing the frown and hazarding: "something amiss with the films, sir?"

Alejandro stops his slow pacing and finally looks up from his dataslate. A quick glance at the gunfootage on the screen that changed but still isn't playing, then back to her. He wiggles his stylis for a second without tapping it against his slate, "Pearson, JG." A blink and a sigh, "Thank the Gods you aren't a Nine. Having a hell of a time telling which one is which and what the hell they've done." Salazar frowns, then sets the slate down on one of the pilot's desks randomly that he happens to have stopped next do. "Do you need something?"

Pearson's expression turns from slightly confused curiosity to a look of wry humor. "Ahh, and gladly not, sir," she remarks with a mild nod. "I've a devil of a time keeping all the names and faces together for all the humans on this ship. The Nine's just defy easy recognition patterns. We ought to ask them to select names or secondary numerical designations to try to keep it slightly less confusing." She glances at the empty seats then back around, "Er, no sir. I was actually just going to use the empty space for a bit of data mining. I can vacate if you'd prefer, though."

A barely there nod, "No, thankfully they are taking names, getting callsigns assigned to them, and sorted into military ranks based on their past experience or actions. /Some/ of that I have to help with, however so … I have to give the CAG recommendations. And memorize them rote myself so I can remember who the frak is who and did what." Salazar smiles, "And that happens to include you and every human viper pilot assigned to the Orion. You are easier." A hand scrapes through his dark hair that has touches of silver in it now, despite his only being in his early 30's. "I know most of the humans who are left to the Orion. I've been here a while and … there are damn few of us left."

A barely there nod, "No, thankfully they are taking names, getting callsigns assigned to them, and sorted into military ranks based on their past experience or actions. /Some/ of that I have to help with, however so … I have to give the CAG recommendations. And memorize them rote myself so I can remember who the frak is who and did what." Salazar smiles, "And that happens to include you and every human viper pilot assigned to the Orion. You are easier." A hand scrapes through his dark hair that has touches of silver in it now, despite his only being in his early 30's. "I know most of the humans who are left to the Orion. I've been here a while and … there are damn few of us left."'

A barely there nod, "No, thankfully they are taking names, getting callsigns assigned to them, and sorted into military ranks based on their past experience or actions. Thankfully they aren't really my problem as they are assigned to their own squads, not my command. A few of them still stand out and I need to keep them straight in my mind." Salazar adds with a faint smile, "You are easier." A hand scrapes through his dark hair that has touches of silver in it now, despite his only being in his early 30's. "I know most of the humans who are left to the Orion. I've been here a while and … there are damn few of us left. But I need to know those of you who have transferred in, better." He gestures for her to be welcome to pick out a seat, then picks up his slate to pull up Pearson's file.

"The official number is sixty, before counting the skinjob pilots, I suppose," Pearson gives a shake of her head, a slow but decisive movement as she moves through the room and drops into a seat in the first tier, setting the schematics down before resting one elbow on the writing surface and propping her chin on the edge of her hand. "You'll find that those of us left fall into one of two categories. The very young, and the long tooth ones like us, sir."

Alejandro comes around and hitches a hip onto the edge of a desk where he can see and speak with Pearson better. "From Caprica." He is obviously looking through her file, "I'm aware of how many pilots I have left." He looks up, "I am, and have been, the Squadron Commander for a little while now." Yeah, tell him all about those young ones. Captain Salazar grimaces, "So many have died. We go through the young ones fast." Better not to dwell on that too much. Niko's not dead at least but Salazar can name so many pilots who are, and so many more he can barely even remember now. So he focuses his attention on her instead, "Tell me about yourself."

Pearson straightens then leans back into the chair, scrubbing her hands lightly against her uniform trousers before she answers. "I have a degree in computer science and programming, which I tossed to the wind when I decided to become a commercial pilot instead because the notion of being shackled to a desk 40 hours a week was enough to drive me insane. I worked for Caprica & Picon Excusions, primarily a private charter company. Enough to keep me in a bird most days and keep in the life style to which I had not yet become accustomed," there's a quick shot of a slightly lopsided grin. "Joined up after the war started then shot shuffled here when more pilots were requested from Crandall. I enjoy long walks through a shopping mall, food that's delivered at all hours along with good wine, and really bad action flicks."

Most of that is in her file of course. Education, past employment, and notes on how she came into the service. But, lacking any flavour and detail. Salazra listens without comment and adds a small personal note for his own reference. "I see. Well, once in a blue moon we do get to raid a shopping mall for supplies." His dark eyes glance back to her, "But don't get your hopes up." The stylus gets slowly and lightly tapped against his thigh for a moment, "I should put you through the sims but I'll pull your footage first. You should make an effort to get to know the other pilots. Especially the younger ones. I'll be assigning them as your wingman when we go out. You'll have to baby sit and teach them. You all right with that?"

"Should the day arrive, Captain, I will plan and execute the most efficient raid ever seen. It'll be a textbook lesson on how to loot a civilian shopping plaza in the least amount of time available with the highest possible net results," Pearson promises with another of those quick flashes of a grin. She fishes out a yoyo from one pocket, casually flicking it out, reeling it back, out, back again. "Just ask any of us, we could all use more socks and stuff, just so you know," she adds with another of those smiles before she nods. "I'm alright with that. I don't mind working with the nuggets, they're refreshing and so full of bottled energy and enthusiasm that it's equally a joy and a constant frustration. Being in separate birds means that the nugget is out of head-smacking range."

The stylus gets pointed at her, "I'll hold you to it." Normally this is where Alejandro would show some good natured humor of his own, but … maybe that's long past now. Instead the Captain only watches her touch of humor and the action with the yoyo without comment. No comment about supplies. "Also means you don't have to smell them when they piss themselves, bleed out, or puke in their helmets. It's a perk the Ghosts don't always have." Referencing the Gentleman Ghosts squadron and their Raptors. He glances back down at her file, "Looks like we also need to update your callsign. Think about it."

"Actually," Pearson replies, drawing the word out as she shakes her head slowly, "the CAG actually gave us the option to keep a new one she suggested. Mine is 'Metis', actually, something about 'wise' and 'cunning' which I think translates to wise prankster, just to be fair." She reels the Yoyo back in even as she nods, "Truth. I'd rather train up some nuggets to avoid pissing themselves, personally, but it happens. The puke and blood," she makes a subtle grimace, "that's part of the cost of doing business."

Another of those subtle nods. The Captain is starting to get a feel for Pearson a little bit and makes another note on his slate. "I … still don't have a new one myself. I'm sure she has something in mind but … I wasn't eager to change. Been so much of that lately." The inflection of his voice suggests he doesn't really give a frak. "Yes, it is the cost. Sometimes it's a lot more, as you well know." The dataslate remains perched on his thigh but his attention refocuses on her, "Do you have any flight instructor experience?"

Pearson shakes her head, a decisive gesture, "Not formal, no sir. There's a difference between training up a pilot who's done plenty of qual time at a flight school before reaching commercial charter quals and training up a complete nugget to actually fly one of our Vipers and not kill themselves, the bird, and everyone around them at the same time. Big, giant, leap of ages difference." She works the yoyo again for a moment, a frown on her face, "That said, I've a good hand with fixing minor stuff that breaks on my bird, so I'm not a complete waste of space, I promise."

She gets a huffed breath out of him and Salazar reaches a hand back to scratch his scalp, "Almost none of us have actually been trained formally in most of the shit we do. I'm a flight instructor now but I promise you, I never sat my ass in a class room for it. There's been no time." He makes another note in his slate, "I'll speak to the CAG about setting you up as an instructor for nuggets. If I don't like how you do it, I'll pull you back off but I'm short on people."

At this, Pearson leans back in the chair again, a look that is both surprise and consideration flickers across her face before she makes a single nod. "Alright. But if they run, screaming, and quit, that will be the sure signal that I'm really bad at it. Just setting the bar at appropriate levels, sir."

"Nobody is allowed to quit. Not if I can help it." Salazar thins his mouth, "I can always give you pointers but I don't have time to babysit them all. The fact that you have stayed alive this long into the war gives me faith you have something to teach them." Pending the CAG doesn't say no. A few more light taps, "Anything you need to know from me before I let you go back to whatever you were doing?" And him too.

Pearson makes a small sound that is quite nearly a chuckle, "Back in the day, sir, I could've taught them how to renegotiate their stock options and optimize their retirement potential while networking for the best charter runs with the best lay overs," she admits. She rises from the chair, scooping the schematics up, "How to present a hiring request with the right bonus potential, and to avoid burying the lead, about which items were the shiny carrot and which were the solid bank on it stuff. None of that is particularly useful," she adds with a calm shrug, "and that retirement fund that I obsessed over is utterly useless now." Pearson snags the thermos from where she'd set it, "Where are we going to get more pilots? That's the question."

Alejandro looks at her as if Pearson were speaking a language he doesn't know. Greek for all he knows. After a brief pause he decides on, "The usual places. I'll pull some of them out of my ass. Others yet will dribble in from all over the colony worlds that remain, if we have time to scrape them up. That's how they got me. Found me in a POW camp." A shrug, "All I need for them to know is how to blow shit up and live through it. Simpler than stock portfolios, and infinitely harder."

"Well, sir, at least they'll know how to kiss ass properly, with that recruiting method," Pearson says, her expression markedly serious and straight, the tone of voice not even remotely flippant, just matter of fact. She holds it for half a beat then grins, "Well then. We'll teach them how to fight, how to fly, and how to crow appropriately when they earn their call signs."

"Sounds good to me." Which part or all of it, take her pick. "There's coffee over there if you need a refill. Don't let my gun camp footage viewing disturb you." The Captain gets back up to go and pour himself a refill on his own coffee that had deserted his cup at some point. Straight and black. Then he clicks the footage to start up again. The sound is turned way down - and it isn't her footage. Somebody else's. Ale takes a seat near by and watches it, sipping coffee. He is bound to pause it now or then or fast forward through parts, or back it up. Then take a few notes here or there once in a while. Conversation could still continue easily.

Pearson grins as she shakes the thermos, "When I run out of tea, sir, I'll swap back to Coffee. I'm going to go occupy a table in the library, but thanks for the offer." With that she angles the thermos slightly again in salute then heads for the hatch, stepping neatly over and out into the corridor.

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