MD #184: Diplomacy out the Airlock
Diplomacy out the Airlock
Summary: Attempts are made to make progress with the two PoWs from Picon. Mistakes happen. Never send a marine to do a diplomat's job.
Date: 09/10/2017
Related Logs: Hard Not to Sympathise
Lleufer Atticus Adeliza Emily 
Recovery Ward - Deck 3 - Battlestar Orion
About half the size of the Medical Center, the Recovery Ward has fewer beds to allow space for those who are going through recovery. Rather than the drab gray of most of the center, the walls in here have been done in a neutral creme color. The beds are a little thicker and the blankets are actually present. There are a few clocks and the only other decoration are a couple of flatscreens that show muted movies from the ship's library, though tablets are common. Behind each bed is a small touchscreen for tracking vitals and is linked to Medical personnel tablets. A couple stacks of recent magazines are available near the door for nurses to pass around, too.

There is no for warning. The hatch to the Recovery Ward opens and in steps an armed MP, but it's not time to rotate out the MP who's already here on guard for Atticus. Right after she steps in and looks about, Emily is allowed to enter and a step or two behind her is the pointy eared elf demon, Lleufer Ynyr. The Master-at-Arms gestures Emily in the direction of Atticus' bed where there is a privacy screen that cuts off the view from the rest of the Ward. "This way, please." Yes, her hands had been cuffed behind her back but once they arrive outside of the Ward, Lleufer produced a key to unbind her hands.

Atticus is broadly the same as he was when Lleu was last here. Surgical scrubs, IVs, and restraints. He really is living the high life. He is more awake though, the sedation being largely gone from his system, replaced only by the warm embrace of those IV painkillers. His guard for now is a bloke, but doesn't seem to be particularly keen on discussing theology, philosophy, or social politics, so the wounded knight has largely been left to stare at the ceiling and doze. The sound of the hatch going has him looking over, but with that screen on place he can't tell if it's just a nurse doing rounds or not until they're much closer, but hey, it's an interruption in the banality either way.

In her on duty blues, with the sidearm she now carries constantly at her side when on duty, Adeliza fell in behind Lleufer and Emily as her cuffs were being removed. She tucked her hair behind her ear, and then walked behind them, her shoulders square and arms straight at her sides. Her hands clench as she comes closer to the screen behind the other two, steeling herself for the face on the other side.

Bathing was a different sort of experience here on the ship. Perks of being a prisoner is that she could do that alone. So she's clean and fresh and even smells as such. Emily even took plenty of time to brush her hair and be sure she was as presentable as possible. A different dress, a deep blue with gold and purple stitching, and corset with a more formal cloak rather than her riding cloak. Atticus will certainly notice she's no longer wearing the same garb she was riding in. On the way up she'd requested to keep the handcuffs hidden under her cloak as well. A touch of shame, perhaps? There is difficulty with having to manoeuvre a long dress like hers around hatches and such with handcuffs on and she requires help. C'est le vie. The number of MP's certainly doesn't seem to bother her in the slightest. When she comes around the privacy screen, the young woman stands at the end of the bed and lifts her chin, fixing him with a gaze. "Sir Atticus. I am to understand you have requested my presence." That voice stops as she notices that he has wires and tubes and his knee is all bandaged. This is not what she expected and the concern on her face is readily visible. "I have been told that you came to great injury in my defence." A few steps closer, still unsure of the tubes and wires.

The woman MP fetches a chair for Lieutenant Wynn and Lleufer nabs one to present for lady Emily to use, is she so desires to have a seat. As for himself, Lleufer Ynyr will remain standing off of Emily's flank if you will, close enough to put a hand out to her arm or shoulder but he doesn't touch her. "I gave you my word that she was unharmed, Atticus." The 'Sir' is left off as surely as Ynyr doesn't address Emily as 'Lady', refusing to acknowledge the right of their government and social structure on what he'd claimed were his own people in slavery.

The swishing of the dress had been enough to get Atticus' attention as the group approached, but actually seeing his charge there in the flesh, and seemingly unhurt, well, the relief that floods his features is visible enough for everyone to see clearly. Once Lleu is spotted with he his expression grows a touch warier, and Adeliza's presence is taken in briefly, but with no sign of recognition. It's the Lady he speaks to, damn the rest of them for now. "Lady Emily," he starts, voice a little rough around the edges, "they" his eyes flick to the flesh eating elf deamon, "said you were unharmed, but I doubted I could trust their word." He's fairly sure she understands why, then glances down to his bandaged knee. "I'm told it will heal, one of their Clerics attacked me outside that farmhouse. I'm afraid I remember nothing else. You are unhurt though?" She looks okay, seems unhurt, but he can't exactly tell for sure. He makes a move as if he'd be getting up, to show her the limits imposed on his movements, and thus how he can't greet her properly, then settles back into what comfort he can find from the enforced position.

Adeliza gives the MP an appreciative nod with a brief smile to slightly emphasise the appreciation. However, she nudges it a little to the side and opts for standing as well. Then she turns and looks at the face of the man in the bed, taking advantage of his predictable disinterest in her to study his features intently. She maintains an impassive expression as she listens to the conversation between the POWs, as she catalogues all the differences she can find between this face and the one in her nightmares.

Emily glances to Adeliza. The royal certainly remembers the face and the violence surrounding the moment, but Emi doesn't seem inspired to flailing or even much reaction except the calm control she showed outside and inside the house on Picon. "Thank you," she tells Lleufer and straightens the back of her skirts before taking the offered seat. Legs cross and she fixes Atticus with another expectant look. If she is bothered by the demon over her shoulder, there's no sign. "Your duty is to me, Sir Atticus. Your doubts say more about your own concern for me than it does about their behaviour. I can testify that I am very much unharmed. I have been treated fairly, fed and clothed. I've spoken to a few of them as well." Hands are folded neatly on her leg but she gestures for him to refrain from sitting. "I order you to relax, Sir." A touch of humour there, Emily even slipping a smile at the edge of her face. "When it became clear we were outnumbered at the farmhouse I ordered Merrick to lay down his blade and surrender. No more bloodshed. We were brought here and it would seem you are doing well, considering. I assume you have been difficult and unyielding in your venom until now?" She sticks to the humour.

Lleufer doesn't say a thing. He does however stand at parade rest like a good soldier and merely waits, listening and watching.

Relaxing is hard for Atticus, there is, after all, the aforementioned flesh eating elf deamon right there next to Emily, and a Cleric that keeps popping in and out but who thankfully seems to be elsewhere for now. He does at least lie still though, not testing the restraints. "I am glad to hear it from your own lips," he replies, when she speaks of her treatment but as she recaps what happened after he was taken out of the fight his expression does darken slightly. "They killed one of my men," he notes, eyes going to Lleu again, "but I don't know who. The others they left, apparently." He might be looking at the Master at Arms, but he's still definitely speaking to Emily. "That one," Lleu, "knew my father. I think he hoped to use him to gain leverage over me, but I disabused him of the notion."

As the one prisoner in bed relaxes into his restraints as much as he can, Adeliza shifts her attention to the woman sitting next to her and shifts her hands, one going to clasp her other wrist lightly behind her back. A light smirk flits to one corner of her lips at the mention of leverage, although the expression isn't mirrored in her eyes, which remain intent, but without emotion; like someone reading a good book and filing away useful information that might enter the story again later.

Emily quirks a brow. "And this is troubling? To rescue one of your men from them, would you not kill our hosts without apology? They were not there for me. We were happenstance. They were there for the family, to rescue them and bring them home to their own people." Laced fingers move to her knee. Posture straight, its hard to picture this being forced. It flows too naturally from Emily to be an act. "They could have killed all of us, rescued their quarry, and left without losing sleep or looking twice. In unfortunate circumstances we've been granted grace. Disabusing anyone of anything will not solve anything right now, Sir Atticus, so I would like you to stop being feral with your words and actions to them." She looks over his restraints, then back, "If they are going to eat us, there is nothing you can do to stop it. There is nothing I can do. All we can do is wait and wonder why they went to the trouble to fix the knee that they harmed if they are only going to be vicious to us later." Those eyes move back to him. "I would like you to cooperate, Sir Atticus. I don't think.." She looks to Adeliza and Lleu, "if he does not cooperate, will it affect how I am treated?"

Lleufer glances aside briefly to Adeliza, then looks solidly back to Atticus without flinching. His baritone is kept low, "You are correct that I killed one of your men. I was in a hurry, but I /should/ have subdued him as killing him wasn't strictly necessary. He had once been one of our own people. I accept full responsibility for his death." As if Lleu were well aware he might be punished by his own command. There is no apology in his tone, only faint regret. "It was a quick, clean death." A glance then to Emily, "No, his behaviour will not affect our treatment of yourself."

Adeliza does look to Lleufer when he glances to her, letting him make the explanation. She gives one curt nod to his words, then she returns her gaze to Atticus, although she is answering Emily's question. "That is not our way, no. We do not punish people for the actions of others. It has to do with that chaos of free will; we give people credit for being able to decide on their own actions, and therefore they, and they alone, suffer the consequences." She draws a breath, looks speculatively between to two, and then adds, "although, I have a feeling any consequences you earn for yourself, Atticus, will hurt Emily whether we touch her or not."

"He was one of my men," Atticus replies, turning his gaze back to Emily as he answers her, "I was responsible for him, I picked him to escort us, and now he is dead and I do not even know which of them it is." He's guessing she'd've said if it was Merrick, but he can't be sure, and that would still leave five. Lleu's words on the matter seem to mollify him a little, but it's still clearly a sore point, especially as he now can't do right by the man's family. The marine gets a faint nod to acknowledge his words and he recognises that dwelling on the matter won't help now, so he moves on, listening carefully to what Emily has to say. "They were not there for you?" That seems to surprise him, and the faint frown seems to indicate that he's not entirely sure if he should believe that or not, but he goes along with it for now. "If that is your wish my Lady, then of course, I will comply," he doesn't sound particularly happy about it, but beggers can't be choosers as they say. He tilts his head as she mentions the word 'cooperate' though, as if asking if she really means that, because he's uncomfortable with the broad scope that that could involve. The talk of consequences has him look to the colonials again, then to Adeliza in particular when she turns out to be an apparent decision maker. He'd had her pegged as a borrow ladies made, and now needs to rapidly recalculate the dynamics in play. He's not entirely sure what the Intel officer means by her last remark, so simply turns back to Emily and bows his head as best he can. "I understand," he says simply, subserviently.

Emily listens to the words from the others and seems satisfied by what she hears. Looking back at Atticus, she holds that gaze. "No, they were not. Once they were into the house I was largely ignored. I asked that you be brought with me for many reasons, but it does reflect poorly if I asked for you to be brought with me only to have you be hostile. We are engaged in a bit of diplomacy." That's one way to put it. "We do not recognize them, they do not recognize us. But we are here together and must work together." She glances over to Adeliza as if to reference, "The warrior woman is correct." Eyes return to Atticus, "You say you understand but I suspect you may not. I asked about treatment because I want something demonstrated clearly for you, Sir Atticus: They may not punish me for your actions, but violence or misbehaviours will bring me strain in different ways. I have told them that you would be difficult because you are good man and loyal. I am hoping to show them that I was not wrong in saying that you are the person I know you to be. Will you help me in the endeavour?"

When Atticus seems to capitulate to some degree, and drop a measure of his hostility, Lleufer makes a decision. Quietly he says, "The man I killed was the one with you along the wall outside of the house." So far, Ynyr does not seem to have any problems with Emily's comments, nor anyone else's. He continues to stand relaxed at parade rest.

Atticus isn't entirely sure if he's glad that this is not some elaborate scheme to harm House Benning, or insulted on Emily's behalf that they ignored such an important lady. With the marines present though, and Emily's will being quite so clear he lets it go as the former though and says nothing. As Adeliza is introduced as a warrior he looks to her again, finding it very strange indeed, but he doesn't question. He actually says very little at all in response for very little needs to be said. Lleufer's information gets a slow nod and a quiet "Thank you," before he takes a deep breath then says to Emily. "I am yours to command. If you wish it, so it shall be."

"There is that," Adeliza agrees to the diplomacy aspect, now maintaining her gaze on Atticus, forcing herself to meet his eyes if they turn her way. "Emily is very skilled at hiding fear. The only time that facade truly broke is where you were concerned." She'll leave it at that for him to put two and two together, he may be brainwashed, but she's pretty sure he can come up with four. When he capitulates to Emily, she gives a single nod, and unclasps her right hand so that it can tuck her hair behind her right ear.

"All right then. Anything else before I escort Miss Emily back to her quarters?" The Master-at-Arms has a report to write and is a busy man. Lleufer looks to Adeliza first as his superior officer, then to their 'guests' in the event that anyone has anything further of import to add.

The Lady seem to appreciate Atticus a great amount. There isn't the feeling of romantic entanglement or anything, but its clear she does care about his welfare. It isn't quite what the fleet had come to understand about the royal families. Aren't they supposed to be manipulative and cold? Demanding and generally pompous pricks? Lleufer may understand more about what she meant by 'cleansing' in that regard. Adeliza's words bring a smile and she looks over, "You're kind to say so. Many years of having to hide certain things and reactions to sometimes awful experiences." Her eyes then go back to Atticus and she reaches a hand out to lay on his, eyes focused entirely on the Knight. "Sir Atticus, is there anything I can request for you? I do not think they have mutton, unfortunately. But your dedication shan't be overlooked. Are you warm enough? Would you like water or coffee?"

Atticus appreciates the touch from Emily much more than he had expected to. It's that anchor back to his reality that's been missing these last few days. "Water," he replies after a moment, the medical staff and MPs haven't been refusing him it, but it can be difficult to drink when restrained, so more is welcome. Considering for a few more moments he then asks, seemingly less sure if this request will be met, "perhaps, if possible, some means of passing the time?" It is, as Lleu can likely attest, very boring to be stuck in medical, double so when there's no one else you know around.

The mention of water is easy enough, and there's no need to acknowledge that as much, but the request for something to do has Adeliza tilt her head slightly. "I am not sure what we have to pass your time. You may find most of our printed or holo entertainment… upsetting," she decides is the most diplomatic word she can come up with on the spot. "Do you still play Triad?"

"I admit, I'm quite bored myself," Emily stage-whispers, patting his hand. "But there are some interesting things to pursue. I'm just glad nobody is handing me needlework to occupy my time. I swear, if someone drops it in my hands I can't help it. I don't even enjoy it." Which could be Cleric meddling. Or just a turn of speech and phrasing. "Water and something to do. I'll make sure you are seen to, Sir Atticus. If I must ask you to do things for me, the least I can do is try to see to your needs." Atticus knows darn well he'd never get this sort of concern out of the Queen. Adeliza's words have her look back and her expression held, not in agreement or disagreement. Just a low smile.

Lleufer frowns a little at Adeliza's question of Atticus, "I'm afraid that until Atticus gives his word that he will not attempt escape or harm to our personnel, or until such time as I am ordered otherwise, that I am going to keep his hands restrained, Lieutenant. Ship's security." He glances at Atticus, then adds low, "If he is literate and knows how to read, or if he desires viewing material, I imagine Command may agree to allow him access to at least Picon historical media once myself and Intel have screened it." Maybe. "I'll have an orderly bring him water and show him how he can adjust his bed to sit up accordingly when he wishes." Assuming Adeliza doesn't disagree.

There's a faint stirring of memory as Adeliza mentions what can only really be books. It's been the best part of twenty years since Atticus had his own collection to read, and there's a moment of longing before the Lieutenant dashes the idea. He gives a small nod at the mention of Triad, although adds the disclaimer, "a little, although I can not claim to be a skilled player." Emily's words get a thankful smile and a nod of thanks before Lleu's words draw his attention. Unsure if that's an invitation to give his word or not he glances back to Emily, silently asking her advice on the matter before turning back to the Master at Arms. "I can read," he says simply, "I learnt a long time ago," before the Machines came, and no one it seems has taken that from him.

It's the Lieutenant's turn to have her expression flicker, which it briefly does at Lleufer's words. But she's quick to school her expression as she turns to him. "No one was suggesting that he should have his hands released, Gunnery Sergeant," she tells him blandly. "The gods know I've spent many sleepless nights honing my skills on my tablet. One can still move their fingers across the screen even if their wrist is restrained." She gives one nod to his plans for having an orderly attend. "As I am on my way to Command from this visit, I will see that it is discussed and decided in a timely manner. Should Atticus desire to read our history of Picon, whatever parts of it Security and Intel deem prudent, and Command agrees, then that will be sent along as well," she assures Emily. "In fact, I am due there in two minutes, so, good day to you." She nods to the MP, Ynyr, and then gives a last, level, look to Atticus before she tucks her hair behind her ear, turns on her heel, and strides for the door.

Emily's hand gently pats Atticus'. "I will accept the pledge if you are willing to give it, as long as you do not pledge away violence of my protection. But as your pledge of honour to my family, that is something that you must choose to do." It is a vote for him rather than either direction Lleu offered. Lleu and Adeliza are aware enough that Emily believes she is safe so the wording likely plays a different role in the dynamic. But people are talking about reading even more. Using tablets. Being a woman from Picon is starting to take its toll on her in more visible ways. She does not, however, admit to literacy in front of Atticus.

Ynyr gives a nod to Adeliza, "Understood, Sir." Yep, Atticus will catch that 'Sir' not being used in the way he's used to it, and addressed to a woman! "We also have ancient classics of literature that I imagine are harmless enough." If they aren't, they should be, Skath be damned. "Still, some basic Colonial history might not go amiss." Maybe excluding some of that Tauron revolt stuff and a few other less tidy episodes. Light reading. Lleu adds before Adeliza goes, "I'll write up my report for Commander Petra and CC you, Lieutenant. Miss Emily has, in essence, requested asylum and does not wish to be returned to the Skath." The Master-at-Arms looks back to Emily and Atticus, "I'm sure we can work out a wording that satisfies all parties, later. Knights are supposed to respect oaths and we'll want to be careful not to tread on oaths you have already sworn." With that, if Emily is ready to go, Lleufer gestures her towards the hatch so he may escort her back to the brig.

Atticus moves his hand as best he can, so that for a moment it rests on Emily's rather than the other way round. Not anything inappropriate, just a quick gesture to show he understands the terms she lays out. The remarks from Adeliza have him looking back to Lleufer to see if that means the apparent offer is withdrawn, stating quietly, "the Lady's terms are agreeable to me if they are to you." He'll leave that there, then the Colonials can work it out amongst themselves as to what to do abou… "Asylum!?" he repeats in surprise, gaze snapping back to Emily as his expression reads shock and confusion and his instinctive desire to move is pulled up short by the restraints. "What..? I don't understand.."

Adeliza is listening over her shoulder as she turns to go to Lleufer, but then she full stops her turn. She looks from Lleufer, to Atticus, to Emily, back to Atticus, then finally to Lleufer once more. "Gunnery Sergeant Ynyr, please do not ever submit an application for the diplomatic corps," she tells him drolly. "I'm afraid I would have to advise command strongly against the placement." Then she gives him a broad grin and leaves him holding the can of worms he just opened.

Emily stays quiet while people discuss reading and books. The assurances from Atticus bring a long breath of relief from her. She'd been holding that weigh on her shoulder for days now. 'Maybe I can finally get some sleep tonight,' crosses her mind. And then she hears Lleu behind her. Frozen. Just frozen. She can't pluck that idea out of Atticus' mind. Standing from her chair she turns and looks to Lleu and there is pure hurt and betrayal on her face for what's just been said. No balled fists, no anger. Just hurt. "You have no idea what you've just done to he nor I, do you?" Her gaze goes back to Atticus with a sigh, clasping her hands in front of her. "Sir Atticus, we need to discuss. Now is not the time for hasty thoughts or brash decisions."

Wait, why is Adeliza cross with him? Ynyr stops in mid turn and looks at her as she departs, "I'm not /trained/ for the Diplomatic Corps. I'm a Marine, Sir." He looks angry but as Adeliza was droll and softened her comment with obvious humor, his anger must be directed at himself. What a frak up!
Lleufer draws a slow breath to keep his cool at Atticus's outburst as well, then looks to Emily. "No. I apologize if I have offended. /If/ you are asking for asylum, and I may be incorrect in that impression and require correction, then it seems underhanded to keep that from Atticus when his service unto you binds him to you. Do I misunderstand?"

If Emily is looking at Lleu with an expression of hurt and betrayal, then it's the related pairing of betrayal and confusion that Atticus is giving Emily. Adeliza's departure doesn't even register, frak, Lleu's continued presence barely does, his entire world is her right now, and apparently… frak, he doesn't have the foggiest what. He struggles, mentally, for a few moments, then turns to Lleu, his voice still confused, overwhelmed, "you said we'd be returned…" Suddenly he feels very, very alone, like there's no one else in the universe he can trust but himself, and it's only the physical constraints put on him that stop him curling up in shock.

Emily's hand starts trembling and Lleu can tell that this did not go as she'd have hoped. Likely the only thing keeping her quiet is that he is a man and she is not. But the hurt in her eyes that she shows Lleu cannot be missed. When she finally speaks, it’s very tightly constrained and sounds quite polite, "I had hoped to convince him it was best for both of us. To let him see you all and give you a chance, and give you a chance to see him. Telling him I have no wish to return just ripped out his entire purpose here. Telling a Knight that a member of the royal family is quitting their post is like having someone rip a limb from you. Sir Atticus has pledged his life and soul to my family to protect us and you basically just told him that I think his offering is.." She hesitates. "-shit. You see underhanded. You misunderstood, deeply." Turning her head to look to Atticus, she's doing her best to keep her royal bearing. A hand reaches out to stroke his hair. "Sir Atticus, things are not as they seem. They can show you if you will give them a chance."

Lleufer stands rigid and watches them both. Yeah, he's not happy. "No, you are right that I did not understand. I thought he served /you/ and if you wished to stay, he would wish to stay to continue in your service. I am most definitely /not/ an underhanded man. I have no desire to see either of you come to harm." Maybe the less he says at this point the better so he shuts up and waits to see if Emily wishes to go back to her cell or stay a bit longer to speak with Atticus. What the hell is he going to tell Petra? Ugh.

Atticus does not want her hand anywhere near him. If he could back out of the way he would, but he's held in place and can only ineffectually try and duck his head out of the way as if her very touch would burn him. Or cleanse him. Lleufer is still none-existent as far as he is concerned, the marine's words not penetrating into his conscious in the slightest. His brain isn't exactly firing on all cylinders right now, with large chunks of it refusing to process what's happening, so the best he can manage back is "get away from me!"

Emily doesn't argue with Lleufer. "And now you have to wonder if he will harm me for my intent to turn my back on everything I know and trust you all to do right by me." It could be flippant but she just sounds sad. And when Atticus yells at her she quickly tucks her arm back. Atticus isn't the only person that suddenly feels alone here. "If you wish to return in a few days I will make the request for you." She looks at the man in the bed for another moment before stepping forward to Lleu and offering her wrists. "There's nothing else for me here. I can no longer help you with this man. My beliefs about him stand but he see's this as betrayal currently. Maybe that will change, perhaps not. You can take me back now."

No, he's not going to say a damn thing else. Lleufer is angry at his mistake, and at Emily for not having made it more clear to him. Instead of cuffing her, he merely motions her towards the hatch and he and one of the MP's will escort her back.

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