AWD #045: Picon Fireside Chat
Picon Fireside Chat
Summary: Kelsey and Petra have a short discussion over the fire, and Petra clarifies a sacrifice that may have to be made to keep Piraeus a secret.
Date: 21/02/2013 (OOC Date)
Related Logs: Bushwhacked
Petra Kelsey 
Picon Mountain Foothills
A ruined home near a river basin on Picon, where Petra, Emilia, and Kelsey have taken refuge for the night and started a fire.

So Petra took first shift this time around and let Emilia take last, so around midnight or so, he probably should have woken Kelsey up already, but he's still sitting with his back to the wall, having acquired a stick torn off of one of the trees to poke at the fire from where he sits and keep it going. Why doesn't he want to move? Because he has a lightly snoring Emilia slumped against one shoulder and a possibly-not-snoring Kelsey against the other. To pass the time, he's singing some radio pop song that probably played a lot back when he was in middle school over two decades ago.

Kelsey stirs at a break in the song and opens her eyes to look at the fire, but she doesn't move. She shivers on and off. The suits are heated as long as they have a power source. That's long gone. Her eyes open and she stares at the fire from his shoulder. She swallows and sighs. "I was dreaming about my dad," she whispers. "This one time when I was about eight or so I got into his gun case and was messing around with a shotgun. It went off and blasted a hole in the wall." She speaks slowly. "He beat me pretty good for that. But in my dream he told me everything would be okay. He told me that people were safe and I shouldn't worry."

Petra shifts his weight a little when Kelsey stirs and speaks, tilting his head to look down at her and listen. When she finishes, he remains quiet for several seconds, then softly clears his throat and murmurs, "Before this all began, maybe a week before the invasion day, I had this…intense dream a couple of nights in a row. Ares told me that faith was going to become important to us, something we were going to need to survive. I understand now what he meant…I didn't then. I dont know that I really have the level of hope he was implying, though. But even if I dont think we're going to win this in the end…Im going to make sure we make them pay for every single life they take."

Kelsey lets that sit on the air. "I don't think we're going to win, either," she whispers. "I've heard rumors about dreams like that, though. Someone else mentioned having one." She continues staring at the fire. "The only reason I volunteered for the wing was because I didn't want to live out the last of my days turning a wrench. I wanted to make my daughter proud. She always thought I was the greatest thing ever. Now I know how my gramma felt when I'd look up to her for serving in the first war." She sniffs against the cold and pulls her knees up, hugging them. "Do you think this is religious? Are the Gods getting back at us? Did we do something wrong?"

Petra slightly shakes his head, "Kelsey, we've all done things wrong. I don't think the gods are punishing us. I think we got arrogant and something we created got away from us. I think if the gods were really punishing us, they'd have the forethought to make sure we had a chance to learn our lesson. Like I told Ares when we ejected…can't punish us anymore if we're all dead." He smiles a little at that and takes in a deep breath, shifting an arm to slip it around her shoulders, "We just have to figure this out. I don't care if they have evolved and think they can replace humanity. I spent a lot of my childhood and most of my major studying the first cylon war and playing wargames recreating some of the fights. We can stall the inevitable for quite some time. I WILL maintain hope that we do that long enough to find out the stake that we can drive through their heart. They have a weakness. Somewhere. And if we get lucky, we might find it out."

"I heard someone in the mess saying that the Gods were through with us. That they were going to use the Cylons as tools to wipe the slate clean and start over. It was apart of this shouting match, but it unnerved me, sir. I'm not religious, but it makes me wonder." Kelsey just sits very still, even with the arm around her. "I'm glad someone has faith." She swallows. "Is that what you think your dream meant?"

Petra watches the fire for a few moments while he listens, very slightly shaking his head, "I dont know. I suspect it meant things were going to look hopeless and that we would need faith in something, to not give up. He said it wasn't faith in anything specific, just to have faith period. I'm not really much of a spiritual kind of person, but I don't give up. The Cylons could show up at Piraeus and I'll still be trying to work out a tactical solution for the task force to cripple their ships and grab everyone we could off of the planet and run." He pauses, smirking a little before he adds, "That's faith, I suppose."

"If they show up at Piraeus I don't care what happens, I'll want to come back here. Its my last real hope, sir. I hope my daughter is alive, but I'm not a mouth-breathing ditz. A lot of my positive attitude is forced. But its what I cling to." Emilia's comment to her earlier probably struck deep. 'Just a kid'. "But Piraeus is tangible. I can get off a Raptor there. Its a possible home. Its a future. If that's gone, then what's left? Nothing. I'd rather come home and be with my family. Go home and lay in my old bed one last time." She sighs. "I'm glad we have people at the top who won't stop, though. That's more hope." Another long pause and she looks down. "You said something today. About the position. That I might have to do something. …No gloves, please. Do you want me to if it comes down to that? Do we protect it to that level?"

There's a faint scrunching of his features when she brings his unfinished comment up - probably something he would have rather she had forgotten about. This time, he's quieter for a longer span, long enough to breathe deeply and let it go, "Yes. Piraeus isn't written down anywhere. None of our pilots know the coordinates, only the ECOs, and senior Command officers. As long as the Cylons dont know the location, the chances of them randomly jumping into the system is so infinitesimal that it would make winning the Caprican Colonial Lottery look like a sure thing. Which means all of those people and everyone in the fleet, are worth a lot more, than just me. So, if that happens, yes. Do it to save any hope you have of saving your daughter and seeing her grow up."

Kelsey listens to all that and she shivers again. Her eyes lift to stare at the fire once more and there is a very dry swallow. A nod follows, lips pursed. "I hate them so much." Its become far more personal, now. "Thank you, sir. …For the trust. That means a lot. More than I think you know." She falls silent again for a few seconds. "That means any ECO I fly with, too, is a risk. Gods." What a shitty deal. Kelsey rises off his shoulder and moves forward to stand. "Sir, why don't you get some sleep. I'm going to take my watch. But I- I need to deal with something. I'll be back to huddle in a bit. Fair enough?" She dusts her suit off and warms her hands by the fire.

Petra shifts his gaze to look down at her again, "Alright. I'll wait until you get back before I try falling off, though. You aren't going far, are you?" His brow furrows slightly, concerned at the vague way she's talking, "I'll put a few more branches on the fire while you're gone, so it will last until the morning. Just keep poking at it every twenty minutes or so…"

Kelsey nods a few times. "Sounds good, sir. I'll just be right outside the door. I'll try not to take long. I'll wake the Cap for her watch, too. Sleep well, Colonel." She clears her throat and moves over towards the door and steps outside without another word.

Petra watches her go, still with that little frown on his face, though he does finally prop Emilia up a little so he can sit up and stack several branch pieces up on the fire pit, stirring it up a little to let things catch. When he's satisfied that things are working, he settles back against the wall again, letting Emilia lean back and this time blatantly using her own head as a pillow to lean his against. While he closes his eyes, he waits until he hears Kelsey return before letting go of the tension and try to fall asleep.

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