AWD #442: Brass Tacks

Specialist Mercier and Major Gray discuss the Three's potential role in changing the course of the war.

AWD #442: Brass Tacks
Summary: Specialist Mercier and Major Gray discuss the Three's potential role in changing the course of the war.
Date: 06/09/2016 (OOC Date)
Related Logs: None.
Clara Elias 
Map Room
Dominating the room is the large bottom-lit map table in the very center. Ten feet across and eight feet the other way, the table can gather a large number of people around it while still accommodating enlisted and support personnel in the small riser seating behind the table. The risers are done in single-piece desk sections that run the width of the seating area and have small reporting displays built into them along with communications ports for headphones. At the head of the room are two very large LED displays that can have almost anything put on them, including projections of what is on the map table. A single computer at the support seating controls this and in the rear of the room is a large, locked case that holds maps and table models.
AWD #442 - 24 MAR 2006

The area around the CIC is a busy place at Mid Watch, and there are a pair of Marines standing guard outside the hatch to the Map Room as Clara and her escort approach. The jar heads acknowledge each other, and those on guard have obviously been briefed to expect the visitor, as they push the hatch open and then make way. The inside the Map Room is all but deserted, and decidedly quiet compared to the buzz of activity around the rest of the CIC. Major Gray is seated at the main central table, a pile of folders and papers arrayed in front of him, and a smoldering cigarette propped between his lips. He's quite young for the rank, though after a year of war that is perhaps not as remarkable as it might once have been, wearing rumpled blues and sporting a bit of five o'clock shadow. Pouring over some reports as the Corpsman arrives, Elias lifts his gaze to study her and her escorts, his expression carefully neutral.

The young woman who's escorted in is really quite harmless looking. She's a slender thing, pale skin and long, dark hair, with sloe-lidded eyes common to people from the equatorial region of Gemenon. She's dressed in standard-issue layered tanks, sweatpants and combat boots, her expression vaguely sullen as she takes in the lone occupant of the room. Her eyes skim his rumpled blues and shadowed cheek, and once her escort has relinquished her from their charge, she settles into the indicated chair and.. waits.

Elias waves off the MPs that entered with Clara. "Wait outside, and shut the hatch." It's not until they've done so that he turns his attention back to the woman across the table. Again he gives her a moment of silent study, taking a drag on his cigarette and then exhaling smoke. But something about her sullen silence seems to amuse the Intel officer, as he offers a thin, wry sort of smile. "Specialist. I'm Major Gray, Fleet Intelligence." Some papers are shuffled and set aside, and another folder produced and opened in front of him. Her personnel folder in fact.

"Yes, I know," replies the Three in a flat tone of voice tinged with what could only be described as an eyeroll, if an eyeroll made a sound. She doesn't return his smile; rather, she begins worrying at a thumbnail with her teeth. A nervous tic, perhaps, or a sign of boredom.

Her tone causes Elias to settle back in his seat and sit silently for another few seconds, considering Clara and smoking. "I see," is all he finally says. After thinking a moment more, the officer asks, "So, what can I do for you, Specialist?"

The cigarette is eyed for a few seconds. If the question catches her off-guard, she does an admirable job of not letting it show. "You can put that thing out, to start. Do you realise the damage you're doing to your body? I mean, it's ironic really, isn't it?" She lets that rhetorical question hang between them, accompanied by her intent stare.

"I realize they're harmful," Elias admits, eyeing his own cigarette for a second before carefully ashing it out in the tray. Given how hard they are to get, he'll doubtlessly relight it later. "But the odds of living long enough to die of lung cancer are vanishingly small." There is still a thin haze of smoke around him, but the source is out at least. "Anything else?"

"I want full custody of my son returned." She's bold, he'll have to give her that. Those dark eyes remain almost unblinking through the dissipating haze of cigarette smoke. "And I want to be returned to duty, so I can keep your people alive. I'm worth more to you doing my job, on the front lines, than rotting in the mess hall while officers pretend they aren't undressing me with their frakking eyes."

The intel officer accepts her requests without question, plucking his pen from his breast pocket and noting them down. "I will see what I can do." Only the last bit about being ogled causes Elias to pause, and his brows raise questioningly. "And the names of these officers are…?"

Whether or not his words are genuine, something about them seems to siphon the tension from Clara's frame. Her shoulders sag slightly, and she nods a little. "Okay." The question, though, earns a slow blink. "I didn't stop to ask," she informs him with a touch of incredulity.

"Mmm," Elias makes a wordless noise of acknowledgment. "I will have a word with Captain Ommaney, and see that your escorts report anyone who harasses you. In any way." Then he lifts a hand to rub at his eyes, squints to make a note about talking to Amos, and then sets his pen down. He looks up to give Clara a vaguely disbelieving look of his own. "I'm not sure you fully realize your position."

Clara doesn't react to the look she's given, beyond a brief flick of her eyes away, and then back to the intel officer across from her. Silence, save for the vaguely unpleasant sound of her thumbnail being scraped at with her teeth again.

Elias looks like he means to take a drag from his cigarette here, but it's out and in the ashtray, so he merely frowns faintly to himself. "We need you," the Major explains, matter of fact. If what he said before was open to mis-interpretation, his tone and words now make it clear that it was not a threat. "And by 'we' I mean not only your own people, but every living human in the Colonies."

If a moment ago she was worried, now the Three is merely confused. Her hand slowly lowers back to her lap, and she studies the man with unobfuscated puzzlement. "I don't know what you mean," she supplies after a lengthy pause.

His lips compress into a tight line, then Elias gives a small nod and begins to explain. "It's my understanding that your line was boxed some time before the war. I assume the Cylons believed mercy wasn't compatible with their plans." He makes studies the Three closely as he continues. "It's also my understanding that the lines were meant to act in concert. Complementing one another. If that's true, you could be critical in helping to end the war."

A small nod in return, to signify 'yes' on the first two counts. To the latter, though, her response is only more confusion. "Complementing," she repeats slowly, softly. Then, with a tiny tilt of her head and a glimmer of something at once guileless and shrewd in the way she watches him, "What do you want from me?"

Ah, now they're getting down to brass tacks. The change in Clara's demeanor doesn't go unnoticed, and Elias gives a small nod of his own to acknowledge it. "I want to find a way to end the war," he says, straight up. "And I'm asking for your help. I'm asking you to restore the Threes." Almost as an afterthought, the Major adds, "Assuming we can." He seems to believe it's a possibility at least.

Brass tacks, indeed. Clara listens as the officer speaks of wanting to end the war, a common enough sentiment from people she's encountered. She listens, and she waits for the Prestige. And it both is, and isn't what she seemed to expect, judging by her blank, disbelieving stare. "I.. I don't know how. One told me it couldn't be done. That boxing is irreversible. I don't think I can help you, Major." She begins to stand, dark eyes already sweeping behind her for her everpresent guards.

Her reaction does not seem to be exactly what Elias was expecting either, and the guards she's looking for are outside, beyond the closed door. He has been fairly informal during their conversation so far, but now he invokes military protocol. "Did I dismiss you, Specialist?" It's a relatively conversational reminder, rather than the snap of a drill sergeant. "I don't care what One told you, or whether you believe it. If we /can/ find a way to do it, will you agree?"

She isn't career military. By what records Fleet intel would have been able to piece together, she's only existed in her current body for six years or so, and obedience to a superior officer is not particularly ingrained in her. Nonetheless, his words are enough to stall any further movement. Her ultimatum follows after some thought, "Give me back my son, and let me help your wounded. And if there's a way, I'll do it."

Elias doesn't seem particularly bothered even if Clara doesn't snap to attention. She stops and thinks it over, which is good enough. He does not bat an eye at her demands, tipping his head towards the hatch to indicate she can go. "Very well. Dismissed."

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