AWD #010: Storm Warning
Storm Warning
Summary: Cole discusses several recent events with Holtz, and extracts a promise.
Date: 15/01/2013
Related Logs: Of Fire And Blood, Family Therapy
Holtz Cole 
Ready Room
Capable of seating every member of the wing with space to spare in its stadium organization, the Ready Room has more than two hundred seats and is the largest room on the ship dedicated to single briefings. Sections of desks were manufactured specifically for this and wrap the width of each level of seating, rolling leather seats positioned at even points through each row. The walls have the tenant squadrons' patches painted on individual panels as well as a Kill Board up to the left side of the dais and podium, the Training Board on the other side to log progress. At the rear hatch, on a barren section of wall, is the framed and cased photo of 'Bad Dog' Ruegger.
January 15, 2005

Cole is at the front of the Ready Room, having sprawled some work product over the top of one of the tables that he currently sits hunched over at. Dressed in his Duty Blues with a pair of new shiny Captain's pins on his shoulder, it looks as if he's settling into one of his new duties as pro tem SL for the Lucky Strikes: paperwork. Instead of smoking on duty, he's got a toothpick in his mouth to curb that particular fixation so he can concentrate on the papers in front of him. Recently, he sent a runner to find Storm.

The summoned Holtz arrives in the ready room in short order; he's clad in blues as well, since he's not on the CAP schedule for the day. He's got a toothpick of his own, which he discards as he enters the room; catching sight of Cole, he approaches the captain's table and stops a few steps in front of it, crossing his arms behind his back. "I'm told you wanted to see me, Captain." He looks down at Cole expectantly, his tone all business.

"Lieutenant. Please, at ease. Take a seat." Ari pops the toothpick out of his mouth, gesturing to the chair opposite him at the table so they can talk face to face. While Holtz settles himself, Janitor tidies up his papers and folders to clear the work surface. One folder remains, though there are no markings on the hexagonal metal surface.

"Sure." Holtz pulls out the proferred chair, and settles down into it. "Hey, congrats on the promotion, by the way. Didn't get a chance to stop you last night." The big Viper pilot allows himself to relax, eyes flicking down curiously at the solitary folder still in front of Cole before looking back at the other man.

Cole quirks a little smirk at that, "That's alright, Promotion Parties aren't really about the newly pinned anyways. I'm just glad everyone seemed to have a good time. Thank you, though." His hand rests on the folder for a moment, fingers drumming on the surface as his mind click-clacks gears. "Why did you re-up, Lieutenant?"

Holtz shrugs. "Lots of food and lots to drink. I'm not hard to please." A short, throaty chuckle escapes his lips. He blinks as the conversation suddenly changes tracks, not answering the question right away. He leans back in his seat. "Well…" Another pause, and he takes a long look at Cole before finally starting to speak. "After my wife and I got divorced, I didn't know what to do. Before I got married, all I knew was the Fleet. When all was said and done, she got the house and our daughter. I figured I'd better try to do something with myself, before I started staring a downward spiral in the face, so here I am." A shrug. "How's that got anything to do with anything?"

"Because unlike some who joined the fleet the first time, you undoubtedly knew what you were getting into the second time around." Ari uses the toothpick to scratch along the edge of his bottom lip before it gets tucked away in a buttonhole for later. "Knowing a man's motivation is a powerful tool to have. So. That said, you know what is expected of you as an officer. You know what is expected of you as a pilot. So this is our chance, this moment right here, to talk about a more constructive way to harness this energy of yours besides the destruction of Fleet property which includes furniture as much as it does your fellow officers."

"Yeah, so I did. And so I do," Holtz snarls and shifts in his seat, expression hardening and body tensing as he leans forward again. "Look, I didn't ask that damn — " He stops himself abruptly, and takes a breath. It seems to derail whatever angry momentum he was building up a moment before. He makes a conscious effort to smooth his features, and stares back at Cole before muttering a soft, "No, you're right, godsdamnit." It seems directed as much at himself as at the other man. His tone is cold and borderline resentful, but controlled. "I'm listening. Sir."

Ari holds up a hand which can easily be taken one of two ways: capitulation or a silent order to cease. "I won't pretend to know what you're going through, Storm. The easy assumption would be that this is your reaction to the news from the Colonies. I can not tell a man how to grieve, but I can ask that he learns to do it in a more civilized manner or at least one that won't have him put in the brig. I'm sitting down with you know to keep this from escalating. I don't know the new DCAG any better then the rest of us, but I'd rather not go testing his boundaries with one of our finest viper sticks. So, do you wanna talk to me?"

"I spent plenty of time in hack my first go-round, Captain. Believe me, I've seen enough of the insides of Fleet brigs t' last me to the end of time," Holtz grunts, seemingly either appeased or quieted by Ari's silent hand. His hand rests against the table, fingers restlessly tapping out a rhythm against the metal. A curt, barely noticeable nod at Cole's mention of the Colonies seems to indicate that the other man is on the right track. "What's to talk about? My daughter and my commission were the only two things I had left in the world. Now, one of them's gone. You want me to save it for the toasters, that's fine. In your shoes I'd be saying the exact same frakkin' thing, so I get it. Really." After four years as an instructor, he's probably been on the other side of this discussion a time or two, in fact. Well, minus the whole end of the world thing, of course.

"Speaking as a man who lost everything other than the pins on my shoulder far before we made that jump in to Caprica air space? I know. And to say for you to save it for the cockpit doesn't sit right with me either. My shoes? My shoes now have the job of looking after every one of the Sevens. The next step would be to recommend to Sheperd that you seek mandatory grief counseling. Because I need you in the wing, in the right headspace. But if you can tell me, face to face, that you'll get your proverbial shit together? I'll believe you." Cole's fingers tent like a five-legged spider on the metal folder in front of him.

Tap, tap, tap. Holtz's fingers continue to drum out that same little rhythm as he looks with pursed lips at Ari. "I'm not trying to pretend I'm anything special, sir. Or that I've lost any more than anyone else in the wing — or hell, on this ship — has. So if you're going to send me to counseling, you'd better send the whole damn squad right behind me." And then he stiffens, leaning over the desk as he looks Cole straight in the eye. "But that won't be necessary, Captain." He hesitates. "You have my word." The last is mumbled, as if offered begrudgingly, but still perfectly audible.

Aristides actually has the audacity to smirk, "If we were special snowflakes, we wouldn't be wearing 'uniforms'." There's a slight shake to his head. "I have no doubt that there is already a flood of those volunteering to speak the the Chaplains. Nor do I have any delusions that this will be the last conversation like this I have to have. Don't bristle, Lieutenant. It's not necessary. Your word is all I needed."

And with that, Ari rises from his seat. The folder never needing to be opened. "Thank you for your time. You're dismissed, Lieutenant."

Holtz watches Cole rise to his feet, and does the same a heart beat later. His spine stiffens as he snaps off a salute. "Captain," he acknowledges the other man with a nod, and then wheels about on his heel before making for the exit, hands jammed into the pockets of his blues.

Unless otherwise stated, the content of this page is licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 License