AWD #203: Do Not Leave Unattended
Do Not Leave Unattended
Summary: Holtz and Atalanta run into each other in the laundry room. Things are discussed and underwear jokes are traded.
Date: 28/07/2013
Related Logs: None
Holtz Atalanta 
Laundry Room
Aboard a battlestar everyone except Command Staff does their own laundry, from ranking officers down to the lowest enlisted. This is one of many rooms just like this throughout the ship, and each one is nearly identical. There are baskets for holding clothes when they are pulled from the dryer and long tables for folding that run down the center of the room. Chairs sit along one wall and some magazines are stacked on a small book shelf near the door.
AWD #203

It's laundry time. And not a moment too soon, judging from the visible lumps of dirty clothing packed into Holtz's laundry bags. It's a mixture of fatigues, tanktops, boxers, and even a few pieces of what civilian clothing he has. A cigarette dangles from his lips as he tosses several articles of clothing into one of the washing machines, turns it on, and then begins to load the machine next to it as well.

There are already machines running — several, in fact. Two washers. Two dryers. A stack of octagonal files sits piled on the latter, abandoned by their own, much like the clothes therein. Their own is nowhere to be seen, at least not until Atalanta comes striding back through the door carrying a sandwich in a clear plastic container and a fresh bloodapple from down planetside. They're unmistakable — midrats from the mess hall. She must've missed lunch.

Hearing the footsteps against the deck, Holtz turns his head as he shuts the door on the second washing machine. "Afternoon, Major," he calls out as he starts the wash cycle. Stepping back and leaning against one of the center tables, his arms fold over his chest as he watches her, a smirk tugging at the edges of his mouth. "Was wondering who was brave enough to leave their laundry unattended."

One of her brown brows — which doesn't quite match the color of her hair — hikes upwards at that. "I highly doubt you'd have any use for my undergarments," she quips easily, without so much as blinking. "I somehow doubt they'd fit you, Major, and I really don't think of you as a pink lace and ruffles sort of man." She must be taunting him. She must be. They hardly issue anything like that in the Fleet, even to the women.

Holtz utters a quiet snort. "No use? I don't know… you'd be surprised what a man could do with a bit of imagination," he responds in kind, his tone equally dry as he somehow manages to keep a straight face. He flicks the cigarette, ash fluttering to the deck.

She stares, unblinking, at his discarded cigarette. There's a frown. Classy. "I've spent the last decade or so living in small, cramped quarters filled with sailors from every inch of the Cyrannus star system. I somehow doubt that," she mumurs as she sets her sandwich and apple down, freeing her hands to remove the bottle of iced tea she'd been keeping under her arm, pressed tight against her side.

Holtz's earlier smirk slowly returns to his face, and he shrugs as he inhales a fresh lungful of smoke. "Fair enough," he replies a moment later. "Spend long enough with a bunch of pilots, sooner or later nothin' surprises you anymore, yeah?" He jerks his chin at the sandwich and the apple she's just set down. "Lunch?"

"Or near enough to it," she says as she resumes the seat she'd been keeping a few moments before. Her eyes flick briefly to the timers on the machines to see how much longer she has to wait. Of course she could've just put all four loads in at once, but it'd have been quite inconsiderate. And involved an awful lot of folding all at once, being as that's an unusually large amount of laundry — likely every strip of clothing she's got aboard, save the ones she's wearing.

Silence hangs in the air for a few moments as Holtz smokes and Atia sits. When Holtz finally speaks again, it's on a more businesslike subject. "Major, you know anything about what command's planning? I'd like to be able to tell my people something when I brief 'em tomorrow." He sighs. "Frakkin' brass has been sitting on this Picon campaign for weeks now. Starting to wonder if they're afraid of something, yeah?"

There's a frown that comes over her face at that, though it's a fleeting expression — one that doesn't sit on her face for very long, before it returns to her usual careful neutrality. "They haven't been particularly forthcoming with the details or the timing of their plan, beyond what was made public when I came aboard a few weeks ago. There are several strikes behind Cylon lines that Lieutenant McBride supposedly suggested; you may want to discuss it with him."

"Hnh. So they aren't telling you shit either." The realization doesn't seem to please Holtz, but neither does it seem to surprise him. "You'd think they'd be at least a little more open with the people they expect to carry out whatever the frak they're dreamin' up, yeah?" He shakes his head; when she mentions the rear area strikes, he grunts dismissively. "That's old news, Major. Yet another godsdamn project Shepard sat on and didn't do a godsdamn thing with besides blow smoke up McBride's ass. And if command really is scared about what's waiting for us at Picon, I don't know that they'd want to send precious resources harin' off to Cylon space."

"I'm not Lieutenant Colonel Shepherd," she explains coolly. Judging by the slight pinch of her mouth, she doesn't think particularly highly of the man. Really, that's putting it rather generously. "I have no intention to sit on these missions, or to blow smoke up anyone's ass. I'll fly them myself, if that's what needs to be done to get our objectives accomplished." One hand reaches for her iced tea, twisting the cap of the bottle. She hasn't so much as blinked at him. Her statement, it seems, is entirely genuine.

"Never said you were," Holtz returns. He walks down the line of tables to grab an ashtray sitting at one end, apparently forgotten; he takes one last drag from his cigarette before putting it out. "Speaking of, I've been drawing up the new rosters since we got our last batch of transfers. I'm assignin' Lieutenant Agrippa to be your wingman. He's too senior to fly with me, but I'm not ready to give him a section just yet. I think wingin' for the DCAG a while first might just give him a lesson or two in humility," he says dryly, the barest hint of a wry smile touching his lips.

Atalanta blinks twice, slowly, her lashes veiling her eyes. With very little warning whatsoever, she begins to laugh — it's a bright, warm laugh, and surprisingly feminine, given her usually stern demeanor. "I think you've put entirely too much stock in my ability to instill a bit of humility in a man, Major, given my complete and utter failure at doing so with you." She makes no effort whatsoever to hide the accusation; it's one she's made before.

Holtz's smirk widens a little at that. "Now don't change the subject, Major, we're not talkin' about me, here," he replies, a flash of amusement in his cool grey eyes. "Besides, I'm much too far gone. The young lieutenant, on the other hand, may still be salvageable." And then, the thin smile fades. "Besides, it's not the arrogance that worries me. I don't mind confidence in a pilot, even in excess. Hell, I'd be a hypocrite if I did." He may not be humble, but at least he's self-aware. "What I don't like are gloryhounds. That's one tendency I mean to break him of, and I don't mean to entrust him with the lives of one of my pilots until it's done."

"It's a decision that I can stand behind," she says before finally taking a sip of her drink. It's followed by her idly toying with the rim of it, flicking her nail against the plastic edge. Though unpolished, it's impeccably manicured. "Though I do suspect it's a deliberate attempt on your part to turn my attention to the Lieutenant, in the hopes that I'll stop harassing you. I wouldn't become too fond of the idea," she advises him. "It won't work."

"Oh, perish the thought, sir," Holtz replies mildly. Almost too mildly, in fact; at least, as mild as his low baritone will allow. "I don't know where you could have gotten that idea." This time, though, he can't quite manage to keep a straight face, his eyebrows furrowing ever so slightly and a grimace tugging at his lips. "I know better than to ask the impossible." A shrug. "In any case, the Lieutenant is yours. Try not to break him, he is one of my better sticks."

"I have no intention of breaking any of your pilots," she reassures him with a wry, uneven smile. "After all, Major, what's yours is mine — in the long run, at least, and whether you like it or not. And you are right about Agrippa. He's one of the better Viper sticks we have aboard. Unfortunately, not only is he a gloryhound, he's dangerous to his fellow pilots. In the course of his evaluation, he managed to successfully escort the carrier to its point, at the cost of the life of every single member of his flight save himself. In fact, he was rather proud of the fact that he outlived me. He didn't seem to see any trouble with this at all."

"The sooner he learns war isn't a points-scoring contest, the better," Holtz agrees. Thinking back to the evaluations puts a peculiar expression on his face. "Though, in fairness, when you did my eval, I was rather hoping to outlive you myself. Especially when I realized what you were up to." He shrugs. "Though that wasn't exactly my finest day." He pushes himself off the table and checks the progress of his machines. "Anyway, I've got to run for a bit. Anything you want me to pass along to the troops tomorrow?"

"I'm the arrogant one, remember?" Holtz retorts with a thin smile. "Besides, I don't think my boxers would be very flattering on you, yeah? They're so dreadfully plain." He inclines his head, the smirk turning to a more businesslike expression. "The transfers ain't helping much, true. Hard to build much of a rapport with the rest of the squadron when your roster is changing every frakkin' week. And, frankly… up until recently, the leadership's been a little lacking, as well." There's a silent pause, his head lifting as if defying her to challenge that assertion. "I'll pass it along, though. Need to start somewhere, yeah?"

There's no objection from her. "As a warning, I intend to lead the airstrike on the capital myself," she says sedately, before the ding of a dryer summons her up out of her seat. There's no explanation given to her determination to fly straight into what is likely to be the most heavily guarded space in the system. It's simply a statement, followed by her bending over to pull open the door and unload the contents of the aforementioned dryer. A sigh of relief — her missing belongings, finally back in her hands.

"I'd expect nothing less, Major," Holtz says gravely; after all, in her position, he'd do the same. He doesn't ask for a reason, but then the look on his face suggests he doesn't need to ask for one. The first of his washer loads finishes a few minutes after Atia's dryer, and he moves over to the machines, transferring his damp clothes into an empty dryer next to the one she'd been using. He presses the start button. "I'll be back. Try not to steal anything while I'm gone, yeah?" His eyebrows twitch slightly at that, and then he heads for the door.

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