MD #184: How Does One Fit In?
How Does One Fit In?
Summary: Rowan and Emily meet in the brig. Both have questions.
Date: 09/10/2017 (OOC Date)
Related Logs: Stuff with the recent Picon adventure.
Rowan Emily 
Brig
The battlestar's brig is comprised of a line of four individual cells organized in separate walled-off bays. Each cell is six feet wide by eight feet long and possesses a bed and toilet. Whenever even one cell is occupied, so too is the metal desk and chair at the entrance hatch — and backup for the guard is never far away. Each cell has had their bars specifically reinforced to prevent a Line member from being able to gain access or escape. Brig rules are posted behind the desk on a white panel with blocked black lettering.
MD #185

The brig is pretty quiet, all told. There's endless rumors that there is a princess being held in the brig and that TK-421 is asleep at the switch while Han and the Wookie break her out. All is not the case, though. There's still a few people in SecHub that are mocking her way of speaking when the Sergeants and Corporals aren't looking and are out of earshot. She can hear it. But she has other concerns. Most of her dresses and cloaks have been hung up on the walls and bars, but not blocking a view of her or hiding her from the MP's. There's almost half a dozen, all extremely well crafted. Corsets typically go with. There's a few more casual items, but not much. Bedclothes are neatly folded in the corner. She's standing in the middle of the cell, staring at a duffel on her bed - the one Miri brought by. There are colonial clothes in there. Her expression looks far off and sad. No tears, she just looks like she feels ill.

The hatch to the brig opens and a young auburn-haired woman comes in. Another elf. Great. "Recruit Heron," she says softly to the MP at the desk. "Major Heron sent word that I'd be coming down?" Someone apparently has been sent on a goodwill mission. She signs in and heads down the row of cells until she reaches Emily's. "Hi. You busy?"

The girl in the cell looks over towards Rowan. She doesn't say anything for several long seconds, she just stares at Rowan. "I have nothing else to occupy my time. If you are here to ask me if I'm a Princess, the answer is No. I am not." Her eyes drift back to the clothes on the bed.

"I know. You're Lady Emily Benning and we're about the same age, so my mom figured we should hang out or something. I'm Rowan," she says, approaching the cell and sticking her hand through the tray slot. "I hear you've had a crappy week."

Emily turns her head to look back. "Hang out? Hang out of what? IS hanging a normal social activity one.. does in the jails?" This has confused her, yes. And there's a hand. Careful steps over, the Lady is wary. But the hand is taken like one would expect a royal to 'shake'. "If crappy means 'horrendous' and includes the ideas of mortification, death-wishing, and bleak depression? Then yes. My week has been crappy. Have you been crappy also?" Give her what Rowan will, Em is trying.

"No no no no no, we're not hanging anyone. It's a thing that means to, uh, spend time socializing casually. I guess. And yeah, that sounds pretty crappy. For sure." Rowan looks Emily up and down. "But your dress is really, really cool."

"Oh. My mistake." Emily stands by the door but stays back a few feet. She's still wary of the elves. Well, she wasn't. Now she is again. The compliment to her dress gets a sudden, breathless smile and she looks down, smoothing it. "Yes, well, for spending a few days folded in a saddlebag I suppose it does look alright. Thank you." Something else is really bothering her, though. Her eyes lift to look to Rowan's. "How do your people deal with prisoners who are difficult and threatening to bring harm? Will they send them home or…?" Yeah, there is no small worry.

Rowan furrows her brow. "Are you talking about you?" She takes a few steps back from the bars as well, eyeing Emily with her own measure of suspicion. "I'm literally the lowest man on the pole. I have no idea what's going on, ever."

"Me? No. No, I've no desire to hurt anyone right now. Except maybe slap Gunree Leu Ynyr." At least she got the last name right. "Two or three times." Her hand trembles slightly and she consoles it with the other, holding it protectively before she turns to pace away. "I'm sorry, you came down here to be social and I am so scared for me Knight. For me. I don't know what's going to happen, nobody is making assurances, and now my only friend here on this ship is probably now decided wether or not he needs to kill me to protect my family. So I'm a little out of sorts." She walks back towards the door, still holding her own hand, "And all I can think about is how I'm dressed inappropriately and I feel like a flop."

"Yeah, he can have that effect on people," Rowan admits, taking a few steps closer to the bars. "I wish I could make assurances, but that is so far above my pay grade, Emily. Not that we get paid anymore, because money literally doesn't mean anything anymore and the world is frakked up and broken, but whatever." She scoffs. "Dressed inappropriately? You mean dressed awesomely."

"Vocal lamentations, nothing more. I wish for ten wishes." The girl ends up rubbing at her temple and then pinching the bridge of her nose. Headaches, from the stress likely. "I'm not sure whose world is more broken, but I regret that I do not even know either world anymore. Everything I know is in danger of being a lie. And I know so little of here." One hand still cradles and rubs the other. Eyes go to the dresses hanging on the walls. "This is who I am, here on the walls of my prison. I just realized how appropriate it is. It is comfortable. It is rich. It may not be ideal, but it is what I know. But I cannot walk out of my prison and function in these dresses." Her gaze goes to the folded clothes on the bunk, then Rowan. "Your world is terrifying."

"Yeah, it is," Rowan admits, leaning forward against the bars of Emily's cell. "But yours is pretty scary, too, with the brain-wipes and rule through fear and all that. Mine has movies, so I'm cool with that, but yours has better dresses."

Emily turns and thinks on that. Her hand stops trembling a little and twitches twice before she says anything. "I suppose mine is scary for you. You would lose much to live in mine. Then your status. Your warrior women like you would lose most of your being." The hand trembles less and less, the more she thinks on this. "I don't know what I have lost, but I know what scares me about it. And I can navigate it." Her eyes go down and her hand seems to have stopped, "It is not so bad. The clerics serve a purpose to the machines. They keep everything in order. I am told there was rampant war and destruction before the Machines, and now there is peace." She suddenly frowns. "I did not intend to say that. Why would I say that? I don't want to return?" The hand twitches again and she shakes it off. "I've never been cleansed or touched by a Cleric. But I have seen it done up close. It is quite frightening to be close to."

"But, I mean, not to mess with your head, but would you remember if one of the Clerics did something?" Rowan gestures vaguely toward her temple as she says that. "I know this sounds weird and you probably don't believe me, but I kind of know how you feel. One minute, I was at home. The next I'm being whisked off and frozen in time for twenty years, and then I'm being rushed onto a ship and brought here. It's disorienting. Nothing feels real."

"Of course I would remember. How could I forget a Cleric going into my head? It isn't.. as-" Rowan suggested somethign terrible. People in her circles weren't ever to discuss these things so it never struck her. Emily ends up backing up a step and dropping heavily to sit on the bed. "You're right, that doesn't sound real. I don't even know how such a thing could happen. Twenty years? How is.. Are you talking about this ship vanishing for twenty years?"

"Correction: This ship was gone for twenty-three years. For three years, I thought my parents were dead. Then the Bugs invaded and some of us got whisked off and I can't even explain HOW that worked, but it did. It's like everything you knew about how life works gets taken of its hinges and replaced by pudding. Or something." Rowan isn't good with metaphors.

The girl in the cell stares at Rowan. "So- what? This ship vanished for twenty-three years. but you were gone for twenty years? How old are you? Do you know? I thought you said you were my age." Poor Emily is tumbling down the rabbit hole and hitting all the roots and rocks on the way down. "What is pudding?"

"I'm twenty. Or am I forty?" Rowan wrinkles her nose. "I don't ask questions about this stuff anymore. I'm not one of the smart people here. I wasn't on this ship when she disappeared. I was down on my family farm on Piraeus." She blinks. "Pudding is good. I'll bring you some."

Emily picks up a set of uniform pants and lays them on her legs, smoothing them. "this ship seems to have a rather long and odd history. I have a few memories of it, but nothing that sticks out. I was so young when it disappeared. All I heard were stories from people and what the world was like before the war. Picon. Stories of Orion and the people who fought against the.." Her hand starts trembling again and she seems anxious, looking down at the hand with confusion, holding it. "..against the first machines." Her head tilts a bit. "Why.." her brow furrows. There's a lot of confusion in her head and still she has that pained expression never far from her visage. "You were a peasant farmer? Where is Piraeus? What do you do now?" she asks, finally looking over.

"I wouldn't say we were peasants. One of my moms was a career officer in the fleet — she's from Picon, by the way — and the other one ran the farm. You met that one down on Picon. She looks kind of like me, but shorter and with darker hair. She rejoined the Marines when the war started." Rowan leans her elbows on the horizontal bar, clasping her hands on Emily's side of the bars. "Piraeus is a different planet. As for what I do, I'm a pilot. I'm training to fly Raptors. I assume you rode in one of those to get here."

"Officers. They are like knights, then? Knights and farmers? How strange. In my life I've never heard of such a thing. Our knights serve as guards and warriors to our royal family and our lands. One would never do something like farm." It doesn't seem that Emily thinks less of people who farm, but there is something of a frown at it. Not much makes sense. "I met no elves on Picon. It was not until I got here. Except Miri. She was on Picon, but she did not look like an elf. So perhaps that is a disguise magic." She thinks on that a mo, "No. There is no magics, right? Only the bad things the Clerics can do?" So confused. "A different planet. I've heard there are distant lands, possibly planets. A very long time ago my mother told me about places, that the Machiens and Clerics wanted us to forget about them.. So we would not be together." Keep humanity weak and spread out. "You are a pilot? No, I was made to wear a hood on my way here. I do not know how I got to this ship. A Raptor? As in the bird of prey?"

"We don't have those kinds of formal social rules. People just kind of do what they want to do. And yeah, there's disguises when we go down to places like where you were. Not magic. Just costumes. My Mum's name is Randy. And Raptors are just what we call the ships I'm learning to fly. Named after the birds, yeah." Rowan answers her questions patiently. "What's in the bag?"

Emily isn't -that- young. The Colonies haven't been gone for THAT long. But the royal girl stares at Rowan, confused. "Do what they want to do? I don't understand. They are allowed to choose between being a farmer and swordsmith? Choosing?" Its like she's psychologically incapable of understanding freedom. The hand twitches an trembles lightly. The baseline connections aren't capable of being made. "Oh, they dress up like peasants and such. I suppose now you have some clothes of a noble to wear for blending, also. Though we do not often blend well. We're taught that we should not, ever, try to mingle with peasants. Doing-so draws the attention a woman does not want. ..But sometime I would like to see a flying machine. If they are not too secret. Someone told me that before the machines, there were many of them and they flew everywhere." The smile is wan. "Bag? Oh, some clothes another brought by. I'm still scared to put them on. There's this other stuff. A package that might be a snack but I'm unsure what a potato chip actually is." She holds up a tablet. "And this. It is heavy and looks pretty and is called a tablet. I've seen other people use them. I don't know how to make it.. do.." she trays poking and prodding at it. "..anything. It beeped at me once."

"Did people take some of your clothes?" Rowan asks, confused. "If it was up to me, I'd take you down to the hangar and let you see more flying machines than you'd ever know what to do with. But nothing's up to me," she says with a shrug. She chuckles in spite of herself at her confusion. "Sorry, sorry, I'm not laughing at you, I swear. Potato chips are crunchy and salty. I'll eat some if you want proof that they're safe. I love chips. And the tablet… you've gotta turn it on first. Press the button on the top. That rectangular thing on one side."

"No, nobody has taken my clothes. But I've no place to put them if I stay. Everyone wears these drab clothes and uniforms. I also do not want to be.." She holds up the women's pants and frowns. "If I am sent home, I cannot be found wearing these. If I were not already to be punished, being caught in men's clothes? A royal? I would me flogged in public and cast out." The girl stares at the pants and puts them aside, looking very tired. She isn't told anything and her only friend hates her now. The bag of chips is walked over from the bed and she waits for the bag to be opened and one chip eaten by Rowan. Dangers to be had. "Turn it on? You mean around?" There's no poer on the planet so this creates an awkward qualifier. But eventually she does fidn the button and the startup screen runs. She gasps mightily at seeing it in her hands.

"Well, yeah, these are uniforms. You're not in the military, so you can wear whatever you want." Rowan reaches out for some chips. She crunches them happily. "Mmm. Greasy. And yuuuup, there you go. Can you read? You just touch whatever you want with your finger and it happens. It's pretty cool."

"Even though I am not in the military, I have nothing else to wear. I do not know how to dress to fit in. And my manner does not lend itself to blending in. But my dresses are too large and I end up handcuffed as a prisoner and I cannot lift my skirts and it is awkward." Trying to navigate the ship in peticoats and cloaks, in handcuffs, would probably not just be annoying but dangerous. Meanwhile she reaches for a chip and sniffs it. No smell. She primly bites a small section of the chip, not expecting it to crumble down the front of her dress and cleavage window. "That's going to get very uncomfortable very quickly. I did not realize it would come apart so easily." She hands the tablet over to try and dig it out of her boobs, muttering, "Paintings of current trends in fashion." She means pictures. Videos might help, but she's not really familiar with moving pictures, probably. "A list of rules for women would be helpful."

"I'm twenty years behind the times. You should wear what you want. Wear what makes you comfortable. We don't have different rules for men and women here. Frak blending in. You should be yourself. Get a tattoo. Cut your hair. Or don't. It's up to you. You can search for pictures on your tablet. That's what the button on the bottom left is for. Type what you want to read about and it'll give you basically anything." Rowan is maybe. It the best person to help Emily try to blend in, but her advice is from the heart.

Emily gives Rowan a blank looks after she finishes digging out bits of chip and flicks them away daintily. 'Wear what you want' and 'Be yourself' are two phrases that clearly don't compute. "No, I meant that I need to know where.." She stops and she rubs her temple again. "Where. Rules. My place." Fingers rub harder and there's frustration. "I can't.. stop.. saying I need that. It just popped out the first time, I didn't even notice." This girl doesn't even know he's been messed with by clerics, which is perhaps the scariest part. She seems so normal otherwise - except for the obvious. She ends up putting the tablet down and closs her eyes. Emily needs help. A lot of it. Seems she doesn't trust herself to look at the tablet either.

"Listen, I didn't mean to upset you. Maybe I should go." Rowan pushes back off of the bars and crosses her arms. "I'm sorry."

"I know you didn't mean to. I'm just in a bad place and really lost and.." The voice drifts. "I'm just terrified right now and thinking isn't as easy as it should be." Emily's hand trembles on and off while her mind wanders and meanders through different memories and topics.

"Want me to come back later and we can watch a movie or something?" Rowan asks, canting her head a little. "It just sucks that you're stuck in a box."

The girl nods a few times, not sure what a movie is but decides to go with it. "That would be nice. And yes, it's rather unplesant. I miss my horse. And my bed." And the hand slackens off on the tremble. "And my room."

Rowan gives Emily a sad smile. "Yeah. Me, too." For all the things they have in common, there is one major difference: Rowan is free to leave. She gives Emily an awkward nod, and off she goes.

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