AWD #264: And Let Slip the Dogs of War
AWD #264: And Let Slip the Dogs of War
Summary: Dog Platoon goes to receive their Blessing in the waning hours before Picon's invasion.
Date: 27/Sep/2013
Related Logs: None]
Iphigenia Kostas Fischer Mallas Warren Amos Maia Taylor 
Chapel - Deck 3 - Battlestar Orion
The chapel is one of the few quiet places to be found on a battlestar. Even rarer still, it's one of the few places that doesn't look like it's part of a battlestar. Heavy blue curtains have been hung from the walls, obscuring the bulkheads. The lights are kept low, adding a certain mystery and gravitas to the space. The central altar is made of a pale grey wood, as are the several rows of pews which extend from it. Laid against the far right wall is a long, low table with several rows of simple white votive candles to be used as vigil lights. Centered among them is a brass plate for burnt offerings from supplicants. Several cushions rest on the floor before the table, where the faithful may kneel to offer their prayers to the Lords and Ladies of Kobol. On the left wall are several compartments which have been sectioned off for private use.
AWD #264

The quiet serenity of the chapel is disturbed by the fall of boots from the corridors beyond, and then the doorway darkens with an influx of orderly movements. A bunch of marines, probably about 20ish in total, move in, Kostas in the front of the group. She's got her fatigues on, the stuff she'll be wearing underneath her armor when they drop in a short while. Kostas' face is solemn as she leads the group to the pews, taking up a position standing by the front one, a somewhat wrinkled and folded paper in one hand. It's got the names of the whole company in there, carefully scrawled in horrible handwriting.

If Captain Arden is disturbed by all this hullabaloo in the chapel, she gives no sign of it. She stands at the front of the pews, her chaplain's stole draped over her shoulders and a copy of the scrolls in hand. "Thank you all for coming." she says in address to the entire group. "It gives me great pride to see so many fine men and women of service taking the time to pay homage to our Lords."

Mallas files in with the rest of the grunts in first squad. And wonder of wonders, his mouth is shut for once. Reverence for the Gods, no doubt. That and good, old-fashioned, gut-level fear. Pale and edgy, Mallas naturally falls in where he would stand on a parade ground, even though formation has not been called. He swallows, focusing intently on the Sister down front.

Quietly, Fischer steps in with the other Marines, staying a bit near the back of the group. Looking around for a few moments, he glances up to the ceiling, very briefly, before he looks towards the chaplain now. Taking a few deep breaths every now and then too. If it's fear, focus or something else, who can say?

"Is there a particular Lord you would like me to invoke over you all?" Gen always asks, even when the answer is almost always Ares, save for when it's Athena.

Warren wasn't precisely expecting the chappel to be filling with marines when he arrived. But he waits, letting them file in, he doesn't push ahead, and for once, when he does finally slip in, he actually takes a spot in the back. His hand digs in his jacket pulling out a photo a moment looking it over as he listens and watches.

Kostas bows her head, moving to be at ease as Captain Arden starts to speak. She still clutches the names of her men and women on her little scrap of paper in her right hand, the chain that holds her religious medals wound gently through the fingers of her left, medals hidden in her palm. The chaplain is focused on intently, with a little wonder. Having been mostly in the trenches, it's been rare that Kostas has been so close to a real live spokesperson for the gods, and it probably shows a little. "Ares, Sir," she rasps, looking out over the assembly. "Unless there a call for others." It's clearly an invitation to her folks, if there's a request for more.

Athena gets called out by one, and then Artemis, and perhaps surprisingly, Poseidon. After cataloguing the names of the Lords being asked for their favor, Iphigenia raises her hands, the scrolls held in them, and begins, "Lords of Kobol, hear our prayer. We call upon you, Ares Lord of War, to make these men and women your Dogs of War, that they may smite our enemies in your name. We call upon you, Lady Athena, Goddess of Battle, that we may know your wisdom when seeking to route the enemy…" As she's speaking though, Iphigenia is slowly lowering the scrolls. The prayer continues and she doesn't stop, but the sacred scrolls are set aside, and the chaplain steps down from the front, into the throng of marines.

Mallas nods agreement when Ares is called for, shifting uneasily in the ranks and keeping his attention focused dead ahead. Then as Iphigenia begins the prayer, Mallas closes his eyes to listen.

Warren stays quiet in the back, thumb brushing over the photo, he occasionally looks down and stares at. He listens quietly, intently almost hanging on every word even with the glances at the worn photo clutched in his one hand.
As Iphigenia prays, Kostas closes her eyes, holds up with both hands the names of Dog Platoon that she has so painstakingly written on her paper—as if seeking to also impart the power of the blessing on the whole platoon by proxy if need be. THe medallions aroudn her left wrist rest lightly on the paper as well, catching the low light and flashing now and then with subtle movements of her hands.

Fischer lowers his head a bit at the prayer, keeping his gaze on the floor as he listens. One hand going for something in his pocket, while he lets out a few deep breaths every now and then.

"We call upon Artemis, that she may Lead us into the Hunt for our enemies," As Iphigenia meanders throughout the marines, she finds herself reaching out. Touching them. Kostas is one of the first, a smooth hand resting on her shoulder that briefly squeezes it with what might be a surprisingly strong grip.

Mallas looks up as he senses the Sister's voice is moving closer to him, opening his eyes to find her walking through the ranks. He shoots a quick, uncertain glance up and down his row, checking out how the other Marines are acting before he settles down and closes his eyes again.

Kostas doesn't open her eyes at Iphigenia's touch, but she straightens—not in a stiff way, but as if she were drawing strength and calm from the chaplain as she passes. She doesn't lower her list, however, the paper still facing the altar, held steady and aloft.

Warren stays quiet in the rear of the chappel. As Iphigenia moves through the marines though he spends more time looking at that photo, and brushing his thumb over its worn surface, looking lost in thought, or perhaps silent prayer.

The prayer continues as Iphigenia continues to weave her way through the marines, her hands touching shoulders, arms, even for some who are kneeling, the tops of her heads. As she comes to the final So Say We All, there's a hesitation. And then she veers from scripture. "I know that there is fear." she says, "And there is no shame in it. Bravery does not mean fear's absence, but the willing decision to do what is necessary despite the fact that we are afraid. One of her last stops is Mallas, and her hand actually rests on the young marine's cheek. Her palm is noticably warm. "Know in your hearts that there is no doubt that the Lords of Kobol look down upon you with favor." she tells them all, but she's looking at Mallas. "For you are their will, their hand upon the worlds, and in this you are all blessed in their eyes." Her hand pulls away and she calls out, "So say we all!"

The young soldier's eyes blink open when the Sister touches his face. The personal contact, and her words about fear and shame, look like they just might be too much for Private Mallas. His eyes are bright, mouth twisted as he struggles not to lose it in front of his entire unit. Come on, keep your shit together man. But the struggle is won by the time she finishes the prayer, and his voice is only a little hoarse when he joins in. "So say we all!"

"So say we all!" Kostas' voice rises with many of her marines' as they echo the blessing of the Chaplain. And then her voice rises again, though it's not a shout, it carries. "Dismissed, Dogs. Do what you gotta. See you at assembly." It releases those who want to go to go—but there are several that linger, either in silence, or waiting for the Chaplain, or to offer their own personal prayers on their own. Silvia is one that does so, taking a seat in one of the pews, though not until after a quiet. "Thank you, Sir. Gods keep you."

Warren listens, staring more at the picture than at what Iphigenia is doing. He only looks up at the last part, watching the Iphigenia with Mallas for a moment. Finally he folds the photo once more and slides it back into his jacket. "So say we all," he intones quietly, lightly drowned out by the marines, but thats alright with the captain in the back, the gods hear everyone or so its said. Slowly though he takes a seat there, resting his elbows on his knees, hands clasped together, watching the front of the chapel now.

"So say we all!" Fischer echoes, going silent again as he looks around, before making his way over to take a seat at one of the pews. Looking around to see what others that might be nearby, he pulls out a photo of his own, keeping his eyes on it as he says something, under his breath.

As soon as they're dismissed, Mallas gives the grunt next to him a shove on the shoulder. "Come on, man. Let's go kill some Canner mother frakkers." He starts to file out with the rest of the Marines from Dog platoon, but not without one last thankful glance back at the Sister.
Warren takes a long slow breath there in the back before letting out a long sigh. He glances down at the floor as he thinks, or prays, its hard to tell. Either way its not long before he's pulling that photo back out to stare at.

Dog Platoon's Officer remains quiet for a long time, in silent prayer it would seem. She turns her paper over a few times, rough fingertips whispering over it, after she loops her medallion chain around her neck, leaving the three out and open on her fatigue shirt. Ares, Artemis, and Hestia of all gods. With a quiet creak from the pew, Kostas stands and moves towards the offering plate, looking down at the collection of names on her paper. John Ommanney. Colt Stone. Ajax Varis. Edward Fischer. Anthony Mallas. Winston Titus. Bear McBride. Rohini Sarin. Cooper Knox. About 20 more men and women, with names that reflect many of the poorer colonies, with a few exceptions. And lastly, Silvia Kostas. With great care, she folds her paper and places it on the altar.

Warren glances up when he spots the movement towards the altar. He watches Kostas place the paper full of names up on the altar. His eyes flit from it, to her, to it, and then down to his photo as his thumb runs across its worn surface again, feeling the creases, its imperfections.

The paper placed, Kostas takes a step back, brings her medallions to her lips lightly before tucking them back into her uniform shirt and squaring her shoulders. She turns smartly on her heel and then starts to move down the main aisle and towards the exit. Her gaze can't help but brush over those remaining, including the flyboy. However, her expression remains carefully neutral as it slides by the Captain, either to give him space in his private meditation—or perhaps wary of the reaction any sort of acknowledgement might bring. Eyes front, Marine.

Keeping his gaze on the photo for a while longer, Fischer finishes his prayer now. "Please, I don't ask this for me, but for her…" he finishes, as he looks up again, looking between the people present as he takes a few more deep breaths.

Warren glances up as he hears the Marine coming down the isle. "Marine," he says quietly as he sits up straighter, "You have a moment?" He doesn't seem angry, or stiff. His tone certainly isn't commanding, almost actually asking, and its most certainly a somber tone, then again the somber part could have something to do with that photo he folds again in his hand as Kostas gets closer.

Kostas keeps moving, her boots carrying her past the last few rows of the pews, gaze directed towards the open door. At the Captain's voice her footsteps slow, and she looks towards him with a mixture of curiousity and more than a little wariness. Still, the request in his tone is acknowledged, and she inclines her head slightly. "Cap'n," she replies in her gravelly voice, but it's hushed in the sanctuary. "Sure. What c'n I do ya for? I got awhile."

Warren watches her a moment, "Wanted to apologize for my tone yesterday. And wanted to wish you good luck when you guys drop in." Theres a glance twoards the folded photo in his hands, "We're fighting for peoples homes, their birth places, their families. Anyone putting themselves on the front line of that deserves some respect, so I wanted to say thank you. Even if you see it as just doing your job or duty tonight, thank you." Theres a somber tone in his voice but theres a little smile at the end and a gentle nod of his head towards the marine.

Well, whatever the Marine from Canceron expected, it wasn't an apology. It startles her for a moment, but a heartbeat later she offers. "Accepted, Cap'n." She nods in gratefulness to the wish for good luck. "An' thanks." Her eyes move towards one of the burnt offering plates in particular that still probably smells a little bit like creme brulee for some weird reason. "Yeah. Th' ones we lost too, and th' ones we still got." It's a murmur, though, perhaps an unguardedly spoken thought. Her eyes snap back to him. There's still some distance there, though no more than might be expected between winger and groundpounder. She sucks in one corner of her mouth, in thought, and because officers are supposed to be gentlemen and gentlemen are supposed to say nice shit to other people, she adds. "Thanks again, Sir. And uh….nice job playing—whatever that thing was you played last night." She moves her hand a little, in imitation of the bow movements. She offers him a salute. "Drop an extra prayer for us if you got 'em, Sir. We gonna need 'em."

Fischer puts away his photo now, getting to his feet as he looks around. A brief smile, mostly to himself as he looks around, slowly starting to move in the direction of the door now.

Warren gives a nod at the first part, "The violin, and thank you." When the salute comes he stands, returning the salute crisply before lowering his hand. "You guys'll have a few extra prayers from me. Take care of my planet when you get down there," the last part is intoned before he even realizes it. He gives her a nod before he retakes his seat looking back up at the altar from the back.

Amos is late, he had tried to get through what he needed, or find a convenient break, but it was not to bed. Still, he's here now though, and it looks like he's just in time for the last to leave. Great. Slipping in the hatch he notes the quiet, the distinct lack of a platoon's worth of bodies and grimaces slightly. He really had wanted to be there. Fischer gets a brief nod as he steps out of the man's way, then he looks apologetically over to Kostas.

"Will do, Sir," Kostas promises Warren, turning away as he retakes his seat to begin her travel back towards the door. She makes a beeline for Amos once she sees him come in the door, offering him a grin. "You got loaded with more files, Cap'n?" she asks him, not unsympathetically. "Don't worry none, Sir. We put in a good word for ya." Fisher is given a nod as well as he starts to slip out the door. "See ya soon, Corporal," she offers.

Coming to a stop for a few moments, first because of Amos' entry, then Kostas' words, Fischer offers them both a nod. No smiles, but then again, it's a long while since there's been too many smiles from him. "See you, sirs," he offers, with a nod to Warren as well, making his way out through the hatch now.
Warren unfolds the photo again glancing at it a long moment, lost in thought again apparently. He does somewhat notice the nod, and the sirs and gives a nod, though he doesn't look up at the man though as he thumbs the photo again.

Amos moves to meet Kostas part way, shaking his head slightly as he does so. "Turns out some people don't read their briefings before hand and so only raise issues at the last fr… at the last minute. Had to re-jig a few things but nothing that affects us in the end." He wants to curse them out, but he's not going to in chapel it would seem. "Good attendance?" he asks, followed by, "and do they appear to be in good spirits?" He'd rather lead a bunch of marines into battle who actually want to be there after all, not those who feel forced. Volunteers over conscripts and so on. Glancing briefly towards the alter he notes, "thanks, although I should probably add my own as well."

"Sister Iphigenia kicked *ass*, Sir," Kostas tells Amos enthusiastically, apparently not having much compulsion to not swear in the chapel. "Almost all accounted for." She looks thoughtful. "Good as they is, before we get the hit of oohrah before th' drop, Sir. Dog Platoon ready to hit 'em hard on your command, Cap'n Ommanney," she tells him, face deadly serious. She offers him a crisp salute, "Won't keep ya then, Sir. Gods keep ya, see ya in a few."

Amos smiles a little at the report of the service, nodding slowly at teh various points. "Good. Then there's probably not a huge amount left to do then. If anything pops up last minute I'll be heading back down to HQ once I'm done here so thats as good a place as any to look. Raptor assignments are being sorted now." He returns the salute with a crisp nod, given that they're inside, then adds, "I'll see you on the ground, if not before. Gods go with you Ensign."

Last minute? Possibly… but Maia hasn't made her peace yet. Hearing something about Raptor assignments has her glancing over, but, the altar calls and once again, memories assail her as she looks towards that altar. This time though instead of holding back the tears, one falls. A single tear down her cheek. There's no reason to be strong at the moment, no one to be strong for. So she walks over, fingers curled over something in her hand and she kneels down.

Amos watches the Ensign depart for a moment, then turns towards teh alter himself. He might have missed the platoon service but that doesn't mean he can't say a few words on his own. Warren is left to his own thoughts as he passes the pilot, although Maia gets a brief nod seeing as they're going to be in close proximity, however briefly. He doesn't kneel though, not before the main alter, instead he stands at parade rest and lowers his head. What words he says, if any, are kept in his head, between him, and the Lord and Ladies. It seems to be no great work though for it's no more than a minute for his chin rises again and he moves forwards to light a candle.

The nod offered is returned and Maia rubs the back of her hand over her cheek. Evidence gone! Though she is kneeling, she doesn't exactly know what to do today any more than she did the day before. Her fist slowly opens and resting there is a circle. A gold circle, a wedding ring. She places it in the sacrifice plate and closes her eyes.

If Amos spots the tear, or it's subsiquent removal, the he makes no mention of it. The ring though, that gets a reaction as he reaches down to drop a folded up piece of paper into on the same plate. He glances down towards Maia a moment, eyes narrowing in thought as he tries to decide if he should say something or not. In the end he settles on one word, a question, "Aphrodite?"

Maia rarely shows any weakness or insecurities but she just can't help it. It's all built up so long that she's finally releasing it. Seeing the folded paper being dropped into the plate, she glances up just in time to see him as he asks the question. "Aphrodite?" The echo'd word is softly spoken. "I don't know the difference in them. She's… love or something?" Her lips twist in a rueful smile. "Just… letting go of the past while asking for a future for others, maybe.. I don't know how to do it, but I thought giving something would help."

Amos looks faintly surprised as the pilot profuses little knowledge of the Gods, but it's not his place to judge so he then simply nods. "Love, passion, marriage, they are all part of her perview." He nods then to her brief explaination before replying, "thats looks like a hell of a past to be letting go of, but you seem to be doing all right so far Lieutenant. Everyone must find there own way, and you've made a promising first step."

His surprise registers a little belatedly but when it does, Maia blushes a little with embarrassment. "Looks like that may be the right God then. It's all I have to offer.." Lifting a shoulder in an uncertain shrug, the hesitance in her expression lends credence to her her uneasiness and awkwardness. His referencing it as one hell of a past on her part brings a guarded look. "Yeah.. Yeah one hell of a past. A child and an ex-husband." One unborn. One on board. "You?"

Noting the embarresment caused, Amos moves on, answering her question by pointing to three of the individual alters a figures. "The Lady Athena, using your head, intelligent warfare, law, justice and may more things beside." The the next, "Ares, ..less intelligent warfare. He's more of the 'just hit it till it stops moving' type." A faint smile there before the final one, "Hermes, bit of an old family friend. Boundaries, both literal and figerative, few other things too along the way."

Information about the Gods is welcomed for the first time and kneeling there, Maia learns more than she'd ever allowed herself to. A small, almost imperceptible nod is offered accompanied by a smile of thanks. "Boundaries. I know that one well, I guess."

"Hermes?" Amos asks, rhetorically, "he can be a slippery at times, but by all means sound him out, see if it feels like it fits." A glance round shows no priests or priestesses in the immediate vacinity and so he continues, "the likely want to talk to one of the Brothers or Sisters, they'll be able to guide you better, but if you're in doubt then I'll offer you this one piece of advice." Gesturing towards the largest of the figures he states, "Zeus, can't go wrong with him while you search for what is right for you."

Well, the offering had already been made and Maia rises to hear out the Captain. Her eyes flicker towards the largest of the figures when he gestures to it. "I'll remember that. Thank you." She'd done what she came to do and seemed none the worse for wear for it. "I gotta get going. I'm flying a Raptor tonight. Wish me luck, yeah?"

Iphigenia emerges from one of the side counseling rooms, an extremely large, bulky marine at her side. She's patting his arm and speaking to him softly before sending him toward the back of the chapel. It's a busy place these days.

"May the Gods go with you Lieutenant," Amos replies without hesitation, "but in return I must ask for the same. If all goes to plan, it'll be my boots hitting the ground first." It's a bit of a daunting thought all told, but that doesn't mean it's something he's looking to shy back from. His attetnion is caught briefly by his fellow marine and he offers the man a brief nod before a deeper, more respectful one is offered to Iphigenia before he's turning back to Maia before she leaves, "I guess I'll see you in the bay shortly."

"Thank you, Captain. You as well." Maia easily returns the sentiment. "Just.. be careful out there and come back home safe." She doesn't know him, but he was one of them. Colonial Military. "I think I remember seeing you last night at the presentation, now that I think about it." Her smile widens just a little more. "Definitely, I'll see you in the bay." Dressed in her fatigues, she snaps off a salute to him before she notices the Chaplain enter. She offers her and the other Marine a smile before heading out.

"Captain." Iphigenia greets, offering a nod to Maia in passing but addressing Amos. "Is there anything I can do for you before you head for the bay?"

"I was there yes," Amos confirms to Maia, then as she leaves he turns back to Iphigenia. "Sister," he starts in greeting, a shorter, shallower nod this time, before he takes a deep breath and lets it out slowly. "You could promise me that all my lads and lasses are going to be safely tucked up in their bunks by nightfall," he starts, then shakes his head slghtly, knowing they won't be. He then gives her a faintly apologetic look and suggests "I know it's an old one, and likely something you'll be doing anyway, but I wouldn't say no to the odd prayer or two our way. There'll be plenty of it going on down there when it all kicks off, but we don't have their ear like you do."

"I will pray for all of them." Iphigenia assures him firmly. "But if I could garuntee anything, we wouldn't need faith, would we?"

Amos finds himself smiling a little at that answer, "that's true. You've got me there Sister." Slipping his hands behind his back he then states, perhaps a tad apologetically, "I'm sorry I missed the service. Ensign Kostas was singing your praises when I saw her just now, and thank you, for doing that. It's good to get together when we can in time like this." The 'especially as some won't be coming back' remains unsaid, but it's there, clinging to the end of his sentence.

Iphigenia smiles at him in reassurance, "No need, Captain." Yes, she knows the unspoken suffix to what is spoken. "May I?" she says abruptly, holding out her hands.

It seems Iphigenia's gesture takes Amos slightly by surprise, although he certainly doesn't seem to object to it as he quickly draws his hands out from behind his back again. "Of course," is all he says as he takes the offered hands an dbows his head slightly.

She doesn't begin with prayer. She grips his hands, and with his head bowed, he can't see how her gaze grows distant. "Do not doubt your purpose." she says. "For they walk with you. The shield of Ares is your shelter, and the spear of Athena is guide. Have faith, and know that you are favored in the eyes of the gods."

Amos nods a couple of times, as the two Gods invoked happen to be two of the three he keeps close. He keeps his head lowered, respectfully as Iphigenia speaks but remains silent, concentrating on her words as he breathes slowly and deeply, letting them roll around him.

Taylor enters the chapel quietly, and somewhat sheepishly, with his short steps and lowered head, almost as if trying not to be seen or scolded. He glances around, as if trying to spot the place to go.

Iphigenia is holding the hands of the marine captain. Except now she's letting them go as her gaze refocuses on him. "Remember. They will lift you as you lift others with your command." She smiles and takes a step, gaze drawing to the new arrival as she assures, "Do come in. We've no few coming to chapel of late, and the altars are open if you wish to leave an offering."

Amos raises his chin once more as his hands are released, looking the Priestess squarely in the face as she speaks to him once more. "I will remember that," he answers after another deep breath, then notes the arrival of another as Iphigenia speaks to him. Watching for the barest of moments he then turns to face front again, "Thank you, Sister, but I see that you are busy and I should not take up your time while there are others in need." He takes a half step back himself, offers a faint nod towards the alter of Athena, then turns and procedes towards the hatch.

Taylor nods to the priestess, a deep, bow-like nod. He moves slowly to an altar, almost at random. He looks slightly lost as he seems to just wander over.

Iphigenia steps over to Taylor, standing at his shoulder in as non-threatening a manner as she can manage. "You look a little lost.'

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