AWD #225: The Armilustrium Games - Celebration
The Armilustrium Games - Celebration
Summary: The games conclude with a ceremony crowing the victors of Piraeus' makeshift Armilustrium and festivities to follow.
Date: 19/08/2013 (OOC Date)
Related Logs: The Armilustrium Games
Agrippa Atalanta Bennett Holtz Iphigenia Jax Lleufer Maia Mahasti Phin Taylor Warren Winston Ygraine 
The Great Beyond — Piraeus
With one main road running north and south, the road parallels a snowmelt river the flows south towards a large lake and the planned site of the CMC Camp. To the north the road runs off towards the future site of the Naval Air Station and the ALS Jolie Point, the First Batallion's landing ship, then past and deep into a narrow ravine that runs along with the river. With the camp located on the west side of the river valley, there is a large bridge built to accommodate the construction crews working on the Presidential bunker out in the mountains. To the east is a mountain range that stretches for more than two hundred miles and quite a bit of the lower altitudes are grassy mountain valleys.
AWD #225

Warren has apparently arrived a bit early to the celebration in his neatly pressed dress greys. He's got his violin case with him, obviously coming prepared as He moves about the crowd shaking hands and talking to some of the others from the Rubaul who've already arived as well.

Lleufer has likewise arrived, and first went to Charlie's for a bit to get a warm up. He's been increasingly going around ship, at least on deck 3, using a cane instead of the wheel chair. Tonight, as he would be on ihs feet for a long while, he's brought the chair for one last time. The Marine MP is likewise in his dress greys, as crisply turned out as he reasonably can be with his left arm in a sling. Lleu even shaved fresh, right before coming down. Annoyed he can't power the chair with his own hands, the thing slowly powers in to join those who are gathering.

A great bonfire has been set up, but isn't lit just yet, as people linger for the closing ceremonies and feasting that is to come. Iphigenia steps out from the temple, cradling four laurel wreathes carefully in her hands as she heads moves to stand out on the steps. She's clearly not prepared to start yet, but instead offers quiet conversation with those who approach her until the time is right.

Mahasti is quiet, likely entering with Lleu, looking just a bit aprehensive about being in civvie clothes. She looks comfortable enough, holding her small medical pack like she would a purse. The doctor notably has a pair of house slippers tucked in the small bag on the back of Lleu's chair. LIkely incase the heels are too much and she needs comfort on the way to where ever she is going after the party. Her smile shows "I didn't embarass you by insisting on buying you rounds, right?" she asks, sheepishly after a long moment.

Phin arrives, cleaned up and pressed into dress grays. He approaches the outskirts of the bonfire, exchanging a few quick greetings with the personnel he knows as he passes them.

Holtz arrives alone, clad in a grey dress uniform that looks like it's been cleaned and pressed just for this occasion. His sash is crowded for a man of his rank; among the badges and decorations pinned there are several awarded specifically to enlisted troops, in addition to his flight wings and several other officer's pins. He looks somewhat reserved as he slowly begins threading through the crowd, offering quiet, terse greetings to several acquaintances in passing as he moves. The major ends up by the impromptu bar that's been set up for the celebration, though he'll at least hold off on ordering any drinks until the event has officially been started.

"Hell no. I don't refuse decent drinks." Lleufer's baritone has a hint of amusement in it for Mahasti. "Half the reason I brought the chair was I could sit when I wanted to rest, or was too drunk to stumble around." He gives her a wink, "Luckily for you, I don't usually get piss faced drunk." He reaches his good hand around to pat the side pocket that has a bottle in it, "I brought some good stuff with me incase there isn't much here worth drinking." He might well have a second bottle tucked on the other side. "Never takes anyone very long to start brewing and distilling when you have a fertile world like this."

Maia takes every opportunity she can get to dress in civilian wear, so tonight she is wearing a dress and heels, hair left free from the usual confines of the bun or ponytail. She arrives alone and without the same hesitations Holtz seems to have, she orders a drink right away, offering him a nod. "Hey Storm." Turning her back to the bar, she looks around and grins when she sees Mahasti in a dress. Unable to refrain, she gives her a wolf whistle, because who doesn't like seeing the doctor flustered?

Mahasti covers her mouth, laughing at Lleu "Well boy do I have a surprise for you." She takes a moment to unzip her firstaid bag. A nice flask is tucked in there. "I've a bit of very special Tauron whiskey in here if its needed. Not only is it a disinfectant - its tasty." she offers, chuckling as she rezips it. "I figured it was the least I could do for you. You've been so patient and you haven't been an imbecile. I'm rather proud of you." she rubs her head "If we find Winston, there is a bottle waiting for him." She sort of doesn't notice, when she spots Maia she gets a little rosey, tilting to look at the Pilot before waving "What? Panty lines showing?" she asks, actually doing a circle in a way that suggests she's trying to look at her own rump.

Warren chuckles a bit talking with one of the others from the Rubaul. Something about the bruises on his face, and the fight last night. Theres a little playful dodging and puches thown with the man before Warren pats him on the back. Ah the bar! Ah there we go! He starts making his way over towards that mystical place of booze.

"Hey." Phin calls that to Holtz and Maia - and Warren, since he's on his way to that area - he makes his way toward the bar. He doesn't seem inclined to order a drink just yet, but it's as good a location as any other to hang. He's just in time to notice Mahasti circling herself, which draws a puzzled blink. "Uh, hey, Doc."

"Well, I am supposed to make a good impression for Marines everywhere. It's in the Military Police credo, you know." Lleufer puts on a mock smug face but his eyes do light up a little at Mahasti's flask, "Hmmm. I'll trade you this bottle I have for that. You can use this other stuff to disenfect your socks but I'm not sure it's fit to drink." Wait, who's whistling and /what/ is Mahasti doing trying to look at her butt? Lleu leans over a little to have a look too, "I don't see any." He eyes Maia over there, "Maybe I should check hers."

Ygraine did not opt for dress greys. No, Ygraine got her hands on some kind of slinky spangly number with a daringly low back and the gods only know how many boxes of condoms she had to trade for a it of makeup. Her blonde hair rests in a knot at the nape of her neck, and right away she starts weaving her way through the crowd to head toward Air Wingers. (Do she got booty? She do.)

Mahasti gets a sheepish look on her face, compliments of Maia and Phin " 'Ello Dolly." she voices, looking at Maia just a bit awkwardly before sort of adjusting her wild hair, Lleu is stared at, her mouth gaping at him "I did not expect you to look too!" she puffs, taking the flask out to flusteredly take a small hit."Non, it is for sharing. Besides, if you give me that bottle I will drink it all and then you'll get me in trouble when someone has to carry me to a raptor because I am giggling too hard to walk." she does wipe it and offer the flask to Lleu "It is a bit smokey and smells like everything I adore." she murmurs, "Ah Maia, is it too much? Not enough?" she asks, likely about her dress in general, self conciously rubbing her wrist a little bit.

"Evening, Lieutenant," Holtz says to Maia as she joins him by the bar, observing the decidedly non-military outfit she's wearing. He looks away a moment later though as Phin's voice reaches his ears, and he raises his hand in a semi-wave to his fellow Viper pilot. "Dolly. How long before you evict that lip-weasel off your face, man?" And then he catches sight of Ygraine, sashaying her way through the crowd towards them, and he can't help raising an eyebrow and muttering a soft, "Damn."

Warren gives a nod over to Phin in return, and then the rest near the bar. He doesn't speak up yet, though the 'Damn' does get Warren to follow the Major's glance over towards Ygraine. "You can say that again sir," he comments to Holtz. He glances around the rest of those joined at that point, looking over them a bit more.

"It's for Picon," Phin says to Holtz, in defense of his mustache. As if that makes any kind of sense. "Do you guys ever just wear your dress uniforms to these things?" The question to Maia, and Ygraine as she approaches. It's kind of ribbing but he can't help but eye both appreciatively, so it's not any sort of complaint. He grins. "Hey, Yggs."

"I keep telling him it's terrible, but he won't listen to me." Ygraine remarks as she slides up into the group, and flashes evertone an excitable smile. "I think that they're just waiting for one of the other champions to arrive, and then I'll bet things will get started."

The DCAG is there, naturally. At the moment, she's standing off to one corner, having what seems to be a quiet and cordial conversation with several of her former squadron leaders from the Rubaul. A soft smile rests on her lips and a drink rests in her hands — brown liquid, which she's swirling idly as listens to a tale being told by a member of her former crew. There's a sudden laugh from her, her normally reserved expression breaking into a warm smile aimed at the woman that's currently entertaining the small circle that's formed.

Lleufer has had a few drinks already but he should mind himself and be a gentleman. At least his arm isn't aching. So he smiles and looks around at everyone dressed up, "Been too long since I saw everyone turned out so sharp." The Marine parks his chair out of the way and with a careful small effort, moves to stand up. Lleu draws his cane from the back pocket and sets the tip to the ground. Before he's going anywhere, he draws the sling off over his head and lays it over the chair. His good hand skims over his uniform to smooth it and then tug down his left sleeve a bit over his not very functional hand. Now he's ready to start taking a slow walk to join the others.

Mahasti is quiet as she starts off to some medical personelle she knows from her time on Picon, catching up. Her body language quite calm and soft. The discussions seem to be 'remember that one time oriented' and cordial in nature. Mahasti herself seems fairly redfaced and happy enough. She isn't a very exciting woman overall, but she did at least put in effort to look presentable

"Hey Dolly," Maia grins, still with her back to the makeshift bar, waiting on the drink. Amusement dances in her eyes as Mahasti chases her own backside around. The sheepish look from her earns soft laughter, especially when she scolds Lleu. "Mahasti, you look gorgeous. You worry too much." When Holtz observes Ygraine, Maia looks over and smiles her approval. "There you go, Shake, you got it going on." Finally her drink arrives and she takes it in hand before shaking her head at Phin with a mock somber expression. "Never. Anytime I can wear a dress, I go for it. And look at all you guys, looking hot in your dress grays.." Her eyes show her appreciation though!

"Think he'd shave it off if I ordered him to?" Holtz asks Ygraine dryly. His expression starts to relax, the tension in his limbs slowly beginning to drain as he converses with the others from Orion's air wing, and he leans back up against the bar, propping himself up with his elbows. When Maia mentions the dress greys, he looks down at his uniform and snorts. In truth, though, the big Tauron does clean up rather nicely, when he wants to.

Warren orders himself a drink, watching the others with a smirk as he waits for it. When it does arive he grabs it and raises it to the others before he's heading over towards Atia. Theres a nod towards the squadron leaders there and a grin before he gives a nod to Atia herself, "Hey Major. Heard you won the archery competition. Congrats" He raises his glass towards the woman with a smile, "At least one of us got to bring it home for the Rubaul."

At long last, Iphigenia finally moves to the steps, lifting her hands and calling out, "If the champions would please make their way to the front, we can begin!" She offers a smile to the crowd, holding out her arms as if to gather them all in.

Ygraine smirks at Holtz. "That would be less fun, it's much more amusin' t'think he can be persuaded rather than ordered." Must be a woman thing.

Now he's up, Lleufer accepts the flask from Mahasti, "Thank you." He's not going to bother her if she wants to slip off and mingle with others he doesn't know. "I'll keep that in mind. Best we both avoid it for now, Doc." He turns and wanders over to where the others are, "Lieutenants, Major, sirs." The flask has been dropped into his pocket for now. "Nice turn out this evening." Lleu stands lightly leaning on the cane, not too bad a limp.

"Oh. Yeah." Mention of the champions seem to remind Phin that he'll be involved in that. He idly brushes the jacket of his dress uniform again. Straightening out invisible wrinkles. Maia's comment gets a chuckle and he stands up a little straighter. Kind of mock preening, but not doing it quite mockingly enough that it's completely ironic. "Thanks." He snorts at Holtz, gesturing a thumb to Maia. "See? She thinks it looks good." That's probably not an accurate quote.

The woman isn't wearing her pins tonight. In fact, Atalanta isn't in uniform — at all. It may come as a surprise that she didn't opt, simply, for her greys. A few of her former colleagues certainly seem to think so as she turns towards Warren at his greeting, revealing the back of her white dress. "Lieutenant Smythe," she says, her tone cordial and inviting. "Thank you. That's very kind." A single sip is taken from her tulip glass, slowly. "I hope you're not too sore from your own exertions yesterday? A vain hope, most likely," she offers sympathetically. "But it supposedly springs eternal."

Phin also just now seems to realize the champions have been called up, so he hustles on up.

Iphigenia is wearing a one shouldered dress that while vibrantly colored, still evokes her status as a priestess. As the champions approach, she smiles at each of them in turn and offers a soft, "I'll call you up one by one to accept your laurels. They're made from the native trees here on Piraeus and I hope you will value them as mementos of your favor in the eyes of the Lords of Kobol."

When the call for the champions is given, Maia looks around, unaware of who all won. She'd gone to check on Grippa and missed who won the remaining events. Phin's comment draws a tilted head as she looks over the mustache. "It kinda grows on you, I think. Not bad, Dolly. Not bad at all." The greeting from Lleu gets a return, she leans over to peer around the doctor. "Hey Lleu, good to see you here." One more, to the Major, she grins. "Looking really good, sir." Though she quickly quiets down as the chaplain addresses everyone.

Bennett is certainly not going to pass up an opportunity to shed her stuffy military attire, and don her mothballed civvies. She arrives, fashionably late as always, and a good three inches taller than usual on account of her heels. For the time being she keeps to the fringes of the goings-on while she tries to ascertain who's here, and how much she's missed no doubt.

Warren gives Atalanta a bit of nod, "Well it only took an hour to get into my uniform here so I can't complain too much." There's a bit of a grin, well lopsided at least. Theres a sip of his drink a moment as the call for the champions go out, "I think they're calling for you Major. Go show em who's the best in the Fleet sir."

Winston comes lumbering on up the way, fidgeting with getting his cover on. It's not often that the big Taurean breaks out his dress uniform. But it's crisply pressed and spotless. He's freshly shaved, with no trace of stubble on his jaw and his mustache somewhat trimmed. The saber even hangs just right at his waist. Were it not for the smell of whiskey trying to be hidden by copious amounts of aftershave, one might think he took this sort of thing seriously. "Did I miss it?" he says as he makes his way towards the front.

A faint flush creeps up into Atalanta's cheeks in reply, though she doesn't acknowledge it. Instead, she gently plasses her glass to him, her drink still only half-finished. "Would you, please?," she asks hopefully, both brows lifting. "Excuse me." A nod, and then she turns, striding towards Sister Arden and the gathering champions. Now empty hands lace together, coming to rest easily in front of her, as she nods to the instructions given by her old family friend. "Thank you," she says quietly.

Mahasti is now quiet, settled over by a small group of ground crew medical from Picon, catching up more than likely. Her fingers holding her bag gently as she points at the stage and gestures being quiet, her eyes spot Winston and she taps his back, whispering at him a bit noisily gesturing for him to go upwards and to hurry. Her weight returns to the other red bag wielders.

Warren sets the violin case down and takes Atalanta's glass, "Of course." Theres a nod towards the woman as she heads up for the ceremony before he glances over the crowd to see whom else might be about now that things are getting kicked off.

It must be a guy thing to opt for the dress uniform instead of doing what the gals have done, and wear nice civie clothes. Lleufer looks around, amused, before he confides low to Maia, "I don't think I even own a set of civie clothes anymore - nice or otherwise." He quiets as the winners go on up, his look catching sight of Bennett arriving. As for himself, he's standing leaning lightly on a cane and has left his wheel chair parked out of the way. Lleu offers the Captain a hint of a welcoming smile and waits to see if she'll join them or stop by Mahasti.

There is an invocation offered to the four gods being honored as the Arilustrium Flame burns behind her. Echos of so say we all as each is invoked ripple through the crowd, and finally Iphigenia plucks up one of the laurels and holds it above Phin's had. "In the name of Apollo Sun-Lord in all his glory, I offer up to you Phin McBride, champion of the footraces. With Apollo's Blessing, so say we all." The laurel is rested upon his head.

Bennett arches a brow slightly as she gets an eyeful of officers and enlisted alike decked out in their best dress uniforms. This is certainly looking awfully formal, of a sudden. Undaunted, she finds her best smile, and drifts in closer to the crowd hemmed about the makeshift stage. She's tall enough not to have to crane her neck to see over peoples' heads, for the most part. "Sergeant, Lieutenant, good evening." That's to Lleufer and Maia, as she spots them. "I appear to be late. What have I missed?"

Phin looks more than a little stiff in front of the crowd, but at least he manages not to blush. Mostly. He bows his head to receive the laurel from the priestess, doing it with a certain amount of solemnity.

"Sergeant Ynyr, good to see you outta the chair," Holtz acknowledges Lleufer with a nod. He turns towards the front of the gathering, a slightly sour note in his eye as the champions are summoned, but he doesn't speak as each of the winners step up, simply standing quietly. He does, however, gesture for a drink from the bartender; his usual. Ambrosia sour. When he turns back to the front, he catches sight of Atalanta as she approaches Iphigenia to receive her laurel, and he just stares. Gawks, even. It's doubtful he would have expected to see the woman in a dress like that.

Warren grins a bit at Phin being offered the laurel and echos out 'So say we all'. He does manage to catch sight of Bennett showing up and raises his glass towards the woman a moment before looking back up towards the ceremony itself.

Standing over near the makeshift bar with a drink in hand, Maia is watching the Chaplain call the winners of the events to the front. In response to Lleu, she replies just as low. "I would stick with the dress uniform, it seems the popular choice for the men tonight. Everyone looks really sharp." As the invocation is given, Maia repeats the so say we all part. As soon as Bennett approaches, she winks at the other pilot. "Hiya. Looking good tonight." Admiring the dress. "Right now the winners are being recognized."

"In the name of Athena Grey-Eyed, I offer to you Winston Titus, Champion of the Spear-Throw." The laurel is placed on Winston's head. "With Athena's blessing, so say we all."

With the bruised knee, it took Agrippa extra time to get prepared for tonight's event and walk his way to where everyone is gathered. Since the theme was to dress in a somewhat formal manner, the Viper jock wasn't going to do any less and right now he is doing his best to hide the limp, taking it slow. If he is up on his feet, it means that the damage to the knee wasn't as bad as first thought, enough to limit mobility though. It appears Erik arrived on time to hear Phin being named champion of the races and for that, he claps for his fellow pilot.

Bennett keeps her eyes facing mostly forward as the awards are bestowed. Atalanta first, and she is not immune to a little gawking, where the DCAG is concerned. She really is very glamorous. Warren is glimpsed a moment later, and lacking a glass, she instead touches two fingers to her lips and wiggles them at him in a saucy wave.

Winston holds his cover under his arm and stands at parade rest. The big Taurean is actually… blushing? And not just from alcohol. He seems genuinely fidgety, for all that his posture is ramrod straight. Other than echoing 'so say we all', he doesn't move. But could it be, after all his whooping and hollering and standing in the limelight during the games, rough-and-ready Sgt. Titus is struck with a sudden case of stage fright?

Mahasti is quiet, slipping back to the bar, eyes on the awards, leaning lightly against the edge. She repeats the old 'so say we all' and rests her hands infront of her, surprisingly staying perfectly still for now as she gets comfortable, eyes mostly closed as she tilts her flask up for a quick stolen drink, tucking the flask into her first aid kit quietly for now, a slight smirk forming at Winston's plight.

Now Iphigenia steps in front of Atalanta. The corner of her mouth quirks upward, and there's a very subtle waggle of her brows at the other woman before the laurel is placed on Atia's head. "In the name of Artemis the Huntress, I offer you Atalanta Franklin, Champion of Archery. With Artemis' blessing, so say we all."

"So say we all," Ynyr repeats with the others. He watches and waits to applaud or yell once the winners have all been named. Lleu glances back to Maia and nods, "I didn't really have anything else to wear." He grins, not worried about it. "All you gals look great tonight." The Aerilon Sergeant keeps his voice down and offers Bennett a smile, "Good you could join us. How's the shoulder, Captain?"

Ygraine seems to find something suddenly very droll. She leans a bit over and taps Holtz on the shoulder, whispering something into his ear that will either earn her a laugh or a glare (or possibly both).

Warren with the awards and acolades moving along he takes another sip of his drink. He echos the so say we alls as they come out for Winston. Theres a little smirk over towards Bennett but then theres Atalanta getting crowned with the Laurel and he echos the 'So Say We All' much louder this time and raises his glass high to that even through a wince before he brings it back down.

As each laurel is presented, Atalanta's lips can be seen moving. 'So say we all', she whispers, echoing the priestess's invocation to the gods. When it comes her turn, she lowers her head slightly to allow for an easier crowning. It's also quite convenient for hiding the blush that rises in her cheeks, at the teasing from her old family friend. Her expression reflects the gravitas of the ceremony, until she straightens once more. And then, "Congratulations," she whispers to both Phin and Titus, as discretely as she can manage, given the focus currently placed on the trio.

Once more, Maia echoes, "So say we all." Though afterwards, she lifts her drink, taking a quick sip of the alcoholic beverage. "Maybe some of the other guys are your size and have something to spare for the future then." Speaking to Lleu of course, in response to what he had said. Maia hasn't noticed Agrippa yet, she's still watching the ceremony.

And then, lastly Iphigenia returns once more to Winston. This time the laurel is not placed on his head, but rather offered out to him to accept in his hands. "In the name of Ares, the Great Dog of War, I offer once more Winston Titus, Champion of the Sparring Duels." The laurel crown is then pressed into his palms. "With Ares' blessing, so say we all."

The four words that are spoken so commonly in the Colonies is repeated by Agrippa without hesitation, echoing the phrase with the others as he watches the others receive their acclaims as well for their success in yesterday's activities. He claps for each who receives an award, some he recognizes, some not. Eventually the Viper jock's eyes looks over the others watching, to see who's here.

"Congratulations, sir," Phin whispers soft back to Atalanta. A respectful nod to Winston. "You, too, Staff Sergeant." He repeats the "So say we all"s as the other competitors are rewarded, blue eyes going back out over the crowd after the priestess as awarded the last laurel.

Warren utters 'so say we all' again as Winston gets crowned again, this time for the sparring. He does stretch his neck a moment before taking a sip from his, now mostly empty, glass.

Holtz accepts his bright green drink, just in time for Ygraine to rise to her tiptoes and whisper something in his ear. He turns in her direction, obviously choosing the latter option as his brows furrow and his eyes roll at the younger woman. He merely grunts as the crowning continues, knocking back a slug of his drink.

Winston takes the laurel in his hand. This time, he breaks into a smile. He presses the laurel to his lips, then holds it against his chest, looking skyward. "So say we all," he says reverently. He closes his eyes, drawing a deep breath before he looks back at the assembled crowd. His nervousness starting to fade as he puffs his chest up with pride. He leans over to the other champions. "Congratulations, major. El-tee," he says quietly to each of them.

"If all of you would take a piece of kindling and light the ends from the Armilustrium flame and take it to the bonfire to start it ablaze, that will end the ceremony and the celebrations can begin." Iphigenia instructs the three Champions with an earnest smile.

Bennett echoes the traditional 'so say we alls' along with the rest, her voice melodic and sweet, like she'd rather be singing the words. During a pause in the invocations, she looks askance to Lleufer and nods, with a faintly sheepish smile. "Much better. I will be back on duty tomorrow, I'm told. I see you are out of the chair, Sergeant." Her expression warms, and she touches his arm lightly before moving away to hunt down a piece of kindling, at the priestess' request.

As the final champion is announced, Maia repeats the same as for the others. "So say we all." While watching the champions, awaiting for the celebration to begin, she sips her drink in silence for now, not wanting to interrupt the solemnity of the moment.

One of Atalanta's slender hands reaches for a piece of kindling, as instructed. Perhaps for the very first time, she looks a bit… flustered. In public. It can't possibly be the assembled crowd. She's certainly been up before an audience before, but her free hand, the one which doesn't hold the piece of dried wood, has begun twitching slightly. She tucks it behing her, hiding her fingertips in the loose cowl of the back of her dress. Only then does she dip the kindling into the cauldron's flames, using it to transfer the dancing orange light to what will soon become an enormous bonfire.

"Yeah, almost ready to ditch the chair entirely. Probably turn it in tomorrow." You know, if Mahasti will let him. Lleufer slips the flask out of his uniform pocket and opens it to smell of it. Ah, yes. Then a taste of it before he restoppers it and puts it away. Not bad at all. Most of his attention is for the ceremony.

Phin looks notably stiff in front of the crowd but, as he's able to concentrate on the ritual, his nerves seem to smooth out. He takes a piece of kindling of his own, setting it alight, then placing it into the bonfire where its small flames will soon become larger ones.

Winston also steps forward to pick up a piece of kindling. Dipping the end into the cauldron, he hefts the flame high. "Look here, Ares! Look here, Ares! Let the Host of War bear witness to thy champions!" he calls to the sky, before thrusting the burning brand into the bonfire. His shyness all forgotten now as he basks in the rapidly growing flames.

Warren watches as the fire begins to get lit by the champions with a bit of a grin. He finishes off his drink, watching the fire grow and grow for the moment.

Mahasti is quiet, tilting to lean and write down an order which she hands to the bartender, taking a large glass of chilled fruit wine - its the easiest and quickest thing to make natively. She is quiet, watching the fire grow slowly, her fingers moving up into her hair to ruffle the curls lightly, getting a seat nearby on a makeshift bench, legs together as she holds the wine.

Bennett has no such fear, where the fire is concerned. She selects a good chunk of dry wood, lights it in the cauldron without hesitation, and then slides it into the growing bonfire with the rest. And there she remains for a time, as if entranced by the heat and light of the hungry flames.

Phin can't help but shift his eyes, maybe a little warily, up to the sky when Winston invokes Ares. Like he might literally be nerved about the Lord of War looking at him. He looks back into the fire, frowning slight.

After a pause, Holtz finally leans down to whisper something in response to Ygraine as the three champions each play their scripted role in the lighting of the bonfire, the growing flames reflected in his flinty eyes.

The growing flames cast their kindly light on the planes of Jax's face, catch in the pale eyes, which are half-lidded in an almost feline sort of satisfaction. The mention of the Lord of Battles makes him smile, though, almost fondly, and absentmindedly touch one shoulder, as if to make sure some memento is still there.

Atalanta visibly warms as the flames grow — pun totally intended. There's an almost child-like delight that comes over her face, one that hints at memories left too long ignored or otherwise forgotten. Nostalgia, and the bright orange flames, both dance in her green eyes for a moment, before she turns to offer a deep, solemn nod to Iphigenia. To her two fellow champions, she says with a smile, "I do hope you'll both honor me with a dance, at some point tonight?" The look which she gives Winston and Phin is both expectant and hopeful.

Ygraine can't help it, she laughs at something Holtz says, and then gives the large Tauran a kiss on the cheek. "Phinny owes me a dance, but then I comin' for ya." she tells him cheerfully.

Lleufer sees a few other Marines he knows and decides to make the rounds while the evening is young and he's able to walk around before his leg wears out on him. He'll pass on a chunk of wood to the growing fire in passing, then wander off to enjoy the festivities.

The DCAG's question breaks Phin out of whatever broody little reverie he was briefly indulging in. "Oh. Of course, sir." He's more than a little surprised, but he manages not to fluster too much at the request from Atalanta. Eyes skim out over the crowd toward Ygraine. He catches the exchange with Holtz, and smirks some. Looking all wryly smug, for some reason. "I've got an IOU for the first turn, but I'd be honored to take the second dance with you."

Winston watches the fire grow with a deep breath, letting it out in a happy sigh. He looks to Atalanta and smiles broady. "I would be happy to do so, Major," he says to her. His gaze drifts across the crowd to Mahasti. "Why don't you take the lieutenant first? I've got someone else I'd like to ask," he says.

Holtz raises an eyebrow. "One more for old times sake, yeah?" He can't help but grin at Ygraine; her smiles are infectious. "Sure. You know where to find me. I ain't going anywhere." He slugs down the rest of his ambrosia before gesturing for another one.

Once the bonfire is lit, there's one more surprise to be offered as a few of the acolytes bring out a pig that has been roasted in the ground for nearly 24 hours, setting it up at a table where food and beverages are being liberally provided. For her part, Iphigenia seems inclined to retire from the festivities, her religious duties done as she withdraws into the temple.

"Of course," she replies cheerfully to the two of them. Her good mood from yesterday's competition seems to have extended itself into this evening, albeit in a more subdued form. "I'm afraid I've left Lieutenant Smythe in the care of my drink in the meantime, and really, the a dance is the least I can offer the man in exchange for valiantly defending it from the ravenous hordes." Her eyes drift across the crowds in search of him, likely lost somewhere in the crowds of people. She pauses for a moment, when she catches sight of a cluster of her fellow pilots at the bar. "Thank you both. I look forward to it. Would you excuse me?," Atalanta asks, her voice tightening slightly on the last note.

Warren waits there off to the side with Atalanta's glass still in hand. He's got a bit of a smile waiting over there, having already finished off his earlier. He does watch her as she steps away from the group and smiles a bit more, lopsided as it is, and raises her glass a bit towards her.

Pig. That smells amazing. And Jax, with no obvious partner (and no doubt, two left feet) heads in that direction, with a barely seemly haste.

Mahasti is quiet zoning out, watching the fire yet with interest and quiet, reflecting clearly. She takes a big sip of her wine, pinky out. She seems content in her quiet observation. She moves a finger up to touch over the silk portion of her dress, smoothing it gently.

Winston lumbers away from the bonfire, holding his cover and the spare laurel in one hand. He makes a circuitous route towards Mahasti, standing at a respectable distance. "Hello, Doctor Sir," he says by way of greeting. "Would you do me the honor of a dance?"

Maia just remains at the bar sipping the drink she'd ordered upon arrival as the fire is lit. She stands mostly to herself, but nearby is Llue, unless he'd moved further away. Finishing the drink, she pushes away from the bar, intending to head towards the bonfire.

One hand adjusts the laurel atop her head as she navigates the other celebrants, trying to find a way to secure it to wavy blonde strands without actually tangling the branches and leaves in it. "Thank you, Lieutenant," Atalanta says brightly to Warren, lowering one hand from fussing with her hair, so that she can recollect her drink. "Would you like to head to the bar for another, or have a turn about the dance floor? I'll do my best not to spend it crushing your toes, but I make no promises besides 'try'."

Mahasti blinks a bit and tilts her head at Winston, making sure her boss isn't standing behind her. She sets her medical bag down and finishes her wine. "Siska and I left a bottle pre paid for you at Charlie's, by the way, did you find it already, Winston?" she asks, setting her glass on her bench before standing up "I'm not very good, but yes, only because you beat me in the spear throwing." her hands extend, cheeks a little pink. She's clearly had a few drinks and is in that pleasant 'quiet' phase of drunken happiness. "Do you want me to put your second crown on you? You could wear it around your neck like a horse?" she jokes, smiling brightly to big ol Winston

Fashionably late. That's a good word for it, right? Far better than Get-Your-Ass-Kicked Late, he tells himself. Neverous and only slightly fumbling the young Ensign Taylor makes his way down the walk towards the gathering. He tugs at his gloves the entire way, not as much to make them tight so much as to do something with his hands and to have an excuse to look down. Every one in a while he'll reach up and straighten his hat, which hasn't moved of course. Trying to keep a low profile, rather hard with his height, he keeps his head ducked as he makes his way towards the bar, which unbeknownst to him, seems to be the pilot meeting ground.

Phin straightens his laurel on his head. He's apparently not taking the thing off right away. As he heads away from the bonfire, he sifts through the crowd until he spots Ygraine. Proffering an arm, and flashing her a grin. "Hey, darlin'. C'mon. Let's swing." If maybe not literally, to this music.

Warren hands the drink back to Atalanta with a smile, "Anytime Major." And then it looks like he's about to ask her something and she beats him to the punch. "Well I was going to request the honor of your first dance, knowing your dance card was probably full but…you apparently managed to beat me to the punch. Suppose thats why you're the Major and I'm the LT," he says with a little grin. "Let me put down my glass at the bar, and set aside my violin case here and it would be my honor to escort you out to the dance floor sir," he intones before leaning down with a wince to pick up his violin case. He heads on over towards the bar to set down his glass and tuck his violin case behind it for now, and then he's back on over torwards Atia and offers his arm to her, "Shall we Major?"

And then the music strikes up - people have put together their collections it would seem, so it's a crazy mix of big band type stuff, rock, and pop from the last thirty years or so.

Ygraine beams at Phin. "What took ya so long?" she asks, and away they go. The pair dance with easy familiarity, with the occasional spin and dip that makes Ygraine laugh. "Look at ya," she says as they dance, "Favored of Apollo, t'night!"

There's a convenient place for Atalanta to rest her glass around here somewhere, isn't there? One last sip before it's set aside, and she's slipping her hand into the crook of Warren's arm. Ever the proper hostess — despite the fact that tonight, she's really not — she slows her gait to accommodate any lingering pain that her fellow Viper pilot may have from the day before. "Tell me, she says, as they step onto whatever makeshift dancefloor may have been assembled, cut, or cleared. "Are you settling in well on the Orion? I hope so; the atmosphere's very different, I think, than what we'd both become accustomed to."

The comment about 'Favored of Apollo' makes Jax glance over, with a reflexive little frown coming onto his face. But he visibly smoothes it away, and devotes himself to demolishing a second helping of pig. Tall, but not big, it's anyone's guess who he puts food away like that and doesn't balloon.

Winston chuckles deeply. "Here," he says, reaching up to take the laurel from his head. "I only have one head, and I follow Ares." Gently, he sets the laurel from the spear-throwing atop Mahasti's head. "Athena's more your speed, I think," he says, setting the other laurel back atop his own. Then, he offers a thick arm out to the Leonese doctor. "You came close anyway. And I don't mind sharing a little glory with you," he says with a wink.

"Guess so," Phin says, after pulling Ygraine in from the end of one of those spins. "I'm not sure it's too good to be favored of any god, truth be told. Usually means they want something from you later that you're not going to like too much. Still…it's kind of fun." Insofar as he's letting himself enjoy it, at least. And he's doing that all right just now. "You look really nice."

Bennett had wandered off for a time, ostensibly to find herself a drink and watch the fire a while. And she returns to discover that the dancing has begun, and she is lacking a partner. Evidently not one to hide like a shrinking violet at the edge of the festivites, she pivots on her heel and heads for poor Ensign Taylor with her most dazzling smile. "Jacob, you are right on time. Would you like to dance?" She extends a slim hand, palm down, in the proper Virgonese style.

Warren isn't particularly fast, but not too slow either. Once there and Atalanta's asking questions he's smiling taking her hand in his and an arm tastefully wraped around her. "I'm settling in quite well I think. Certainly a much different atmostphere than the Rubaul but it is one I am quite getting used to. Nice having a bunk to myself," he says as he starts to dance with the DCAG, ginergly and slowly but dancing none the less. "And it does help to have a familiar face there. And how many people can say they're serving with the DCAG who won the games' archery tournament hmm?" he grins a bit with that.

Mahasti ers a bit "Winston, my patron is the sacred physician, actually." she offers, blushing at being crowned holding her tatooed wrist up to show him the sign there. Asclepius is her patron, apparently. She smiles, taking Winston's arm with both of her hands "Please lead, I will do my best to be graceful footed." she leans foreward to whisper to Winston, her messy mane of red curls a bit longer than it generally looks at a glance. "It was an honor to nip at your heels, and at Dolly's and it was pleasant to nearly strike as true as the DCAG." she jokes, patting the back of Winston's large hand.

Holtz stays on his perch by the bar, eyes running up and down Ygraine's form as she dances with Phin. He watches the pair of them move to the music with a thin smile… only to have the smile fade as his eyes begin to travel and land upon Atalanta and Warren. He utters a throaty grunt, and knocks back the remainder of his second drink before motioning for yet another one, lighting a cigarette a moment later.

"The entirety of the Orion's air wing," she retorts with a laugh. It's a bright, airy sound. Really, Atalanta ought to laugh more often. "Though I'm not entirely sure the rest of them are quite as pleased — or quite as flattering — as you're being, Lieutenant. It's enough to make a woman suspicious." Her eyes narrow, though it isn't the least bit genuine. "Are you going to ask me for a second bunk to call you're own, or are you simply stockpiling compliments in the hopes of asking me for something later?"

Taylor freezes, caught in the act of getting away when Butch speaks to him. Half a dozen steps and maybe he could have melted away. But apparently bus drivers are as accurate as Viper jocks.. well one of them anyway. Ignoring the feeling of his face paling, he turns around slowly, managing to force a weak smile and a slight bow of his head. "Of course, Captain. How can I refuse?" He takes her hand lightly, and offers her to lead the way to the floor.

"This is just honorin' them Phinny, it ain't like he's callin' down th'chariot and makin' ya his paragon." Yggy tells Phin airily, "It's sort of like you're back in kindergarden and he just stuck a big ol' goldstar on your forehead with the words 'nice job!' is all. Ya can peel it off once you're home." Then, clearly pleased, "Ya like it? Don't get me wrong, I'm proud of my dress uniform, but I love wearin' stuff like this. And ya look right handsome. Even with th'caterpillar." That seems to be Ygraine's nickname for his lip adornment.

Bennett is not blind; she does notice the hesitance from Taylor, and after her hand is taken, leans in to say something softly to him. Then away they go, picking through the crowd of onlookers and up to the makeshift dancefloor. Once they've reached a spot where they're unlikely to be trampled, she slides one arm over his shoulders and weaves the fingers of the other hand with his. It's a close, intimate style of dancing that puts her almost at eye level, with those heels of hers.

Winston chuckles deeply as he leads Mahasti out to the floor. "Asculapius is Athena's nephew," he says. "So there's a relation there. Close enough for government work, nay?" He turns to face her, taking one of her hands in his and setting it on his shoulder. "Hang on to me. I won't let you trip," he says. He takes her other hand, settling the other on her hip, and starts cutting a rug. "You really did do well," he says. "If I hadn't had some fortune, that laurel would be yours anyway, I think." He leans down to mutter in her ear.

Warren chuckles a bit and manages to wince only a little in response to the questions coming from Atalanta. "What me? Buttering you up for something? Of course not. That would be silly. I mean I could use a promotion but I wouldn't do that," he says in a rather joking tone still chuckling a little. He shakes his head with a grin, "In all seriousness, it really is nice to see a familiar face, and hear a familiar voice over the wireless out in the black."

"Yeah, I like it," Phin affirms to Ygraine about her dress, before dipping her. He's careful to do it in a way that doesn't jar his laurel. "And it's not that bad…is it?" Concerning his mustache. "Figure it beats dying my hair ginger or something. And you've got to admit, hard to mistake me for my brother this way." De-twinning via a funny nose and glasses.

Mahasti gets red faced at the whisper, leaning close to show that she surprisingly can dance well enough "Now now, My friend, it would be unlion-like to dangle." she seems to be having a little trouble keeping her hand all the way up on Winston's shoulder, instead moving it to rest on the nearest portion of his forearm. She half closes her eyes following Winston's lead. "I love this song actually." she offers cordially, curving frame showing "While I came close, it means, if I work hard, perhaps I can win next year. I would rather enjoy besting you properly." she offers with a big grin at Winston.

"It's true," she says, as they turn around the floor, one of Atalanta's arms looped loosely around Warren's shoulders. "It never really bothered me before — the emptiness and the silence. It was beautiful, really, with the cold, burning light of the stares all around you. The streetlights in Caprica City were so bright, you could hardly see a single point of light in the nigh sky, unless it happened to be flourescent." The smile she was sporting remains, though some of the warmth fades. "It's different now, so much different. I really am grateful to have at least one voice I know filling up the silence."

Taylor chuckles softly, barely loud enough to hear. "That's the second time this week I've heard that…"

Let's face it, the next thing out of Yggy's mouth is probably a thing only she can say and not have it sound horrible and mean and nasty. "It's pretty awful." she tells him frankly with a giggle. "I'd almost rather help ya dye your hair than see that thing wrigglin' every mornin' over chow. I get th' point of it," she twirls, with the expert ease of Academy champs, "I just wish there was a better option - we could try dyin' your hair…"

Taylor chuckles softly, barely loud enough to hear. "That's the second time this week I've heard that…" His eyes widen slightly a split second after he says it, realizing how it sounds. But too late now. He weaves his fingers in hers like she has done, then timidly wraps an arm around her waist to place a hand on the small of her back. It feels almost mechanical, a drilled motion. He looks, for once, into Bennett's face and smiles as he begins to lead them in a soft dance.

Winston nods his head. "Of course," he says. "I'm not getting any younger. If you work at it, anything is possible." He moves in time, dancing remarkably well, given that he's an unlettered, unwashed, filthy marine.

Theres a nod at what Atalanta says, "Can't say I spent much time on Caprica, but I know what you're saying." Theres a little pained smirk, though pain coming from the topic or the giant bruises on his face is hard to determine, "But you were one of the reasons I was glad to get the transfer over here. Not just saying that sir." Theres another smirk after a moment, "And you know the perk of getting to dance with a Major, who happens to be the DCAG, in such a lovely dress is certainly a wonderful bonus."

Bennett is clearly not the sort of girl to be led, when dancing. But she rolls her shoulders back, draws a breath, and allows Taylor to set the pace. There is nothing shy about the way her arm rests against the (much) younger pilot's shoulder, and her blue eyes meet his like everyone else around them has ceased to exist. "I did not see you at the games," she murmurs, smiling slightly at his perceived gaffe. "You seem like you would have been a shoo-in in the foot race."

"I am not going ginger," Phin says emphatically to Ygraine, his hold mock-teetering on Ygraine when she giggles at his attempt at facial hair. Almost like he's going to drop her. But he doesn't, swinging her back up lightly. "Y'know, I got to go the games last year, when I was on Picon. Could barely see any of the events, though. The crowds were seriously thick, and we got crappy seats."

Ygraine doesn't doubt it for a moment, but she does give him a little warning look, to play with the act. "I watched them on the flatscreen at the Airbase on Caprica." she confesses. "Feels weird bein' so small - but it's kinda like what we talked about at th'river. It bein' sad, but still glad we're here in th'moment." Yggy's tone turns thoughtful and then, "Oh look, Violet's here. He's dancin' with Butch. Good, she won't let him wilt."

"You're absolutely shameless, Smythe," she says with a cluck of her tongue and a shake of her head — a slight one, lest she dislodge the wreath resting in her hair. His surname, without the title. A hint of familiarity, then, rather than her usual formality and quiet respect. Still, she doesn't seem to mind. Really, why in the world would she scoff at a compliment, unless it was a crude one? "You ought to turn your charm on St. Clair and Vashti next; they're both lovely, and there's the added benefit of buttering up one of the better Raptor crews we have aboard. A smart move, I'd say, to ingratiate yourself with the bus-drivers." It's a well-timed suggestion, being as the song is rolling towards its end.

Mahasti laughs softly "I'm not some twenty year old kid anymore. There are limits and its harder." she offers, "I think unfortunantly alls this festival did for me is make me long for both homes that have been stolen" she offers, head tilting to rest neatly on Winston's chest. Phin's words catch her ear, that will be a question for later. She looks up at Winston "Do you think you would mind taking a photo with me? Since you are one of my friends and I like keeping photos of things that matter to me on my bunk. Oo! And I got the best photo of you ever!" she chirps at Winston, almost overly excited, "You should have danced with the Major first, she's very pretty and a better dancer, longer legs."

Winston grins a bit. "A photo? Of me? Doctor, I'm flattered. Why would you want to keep a picture of my ugly mug around, anyway?" He lifts a hand to gently cradle the back of Mahasti's head as she rests it against his chest. "But… if you really want a picture with me, I'd be delighted." He leans back a bit, glancing down at her. "The Major's not you," he says softly. "I don't know her like I know you. And I wanted to have first dance with you. She can wait her turn." A half-grin tugs up one corner of his mustache. "Besides. Your legs are just fine the way they are."

Taylor could not seem to bring himself to look away, whether from captivation or politeness. He does blush slightly, though. "I did not think anyone would notice my absence.. in fact if it wasn't nearly mandatory I wouldn't be here." He clears his throat slightly, smiling weakly. "Perhaps some may have noticed that I am… uncomfortable in groups.. of any size."

Taylor's not the only one, it seems. Jax's made no move whatsoever to ask anyone, male or female, to dance. Contentedly lurking by the fire, close enough that the warmth brings color to his pale face. Nibbling on the last of the pig, which he's drawing out and savoring as long as ever he can, it seems.

"If I'm here for it again next year, I want to try and get one of the spots flying with our Colonial Knights knock-offs," Phin says to Ygraine, continue to step in time with her to the music. "Even if I have to skip the events." He cranes his neck when he's turned in a direction to watch Taylor and Bennett, chuckling. "Glad he came. Maybe Butch'll be able to keep him from running back to his bunk for a turn or two."

Mahasti laughs a bit "Yes. You aren't a bad guy, besides, you didn't fuss when I jabbed you with all those booster shots." she leans, whispering something "You shouldn't be so quick to compliment me. I'm just a little stitch bitch hiding in ugly green scrubs sticking my hands in coolers." she offers with a drunken giggle. Her face goes serious though, a second whisper given to Winston.

There's a little wink to Atalanta from Warren, "Well I still am a viper jock." Theres a bit of a grin and a glance over to where Bennett is, "Ah yes well St Claire is a wonderful bus driver I must say. I should ask her for the next dance I think." He grins a bit back to Atia as the song winds down to its conclusion, "I mean at the very least I should rescue poor Wheels, he might explode if he's left there with her for too long."

Neither is Holtz being terribly sociable tonight, either. Nor has he made any move towards the food; he's spent the entire time over by the bar, drinking and smoking and watching the couples dance. He's had enough ambrosia to give even a big guy like him a buzz, though he doesn't seem to be displaying much euphoria at the moment as he looks out among the crowd.

"It.. is rather obvious," St. Clair confides, very softly, with a smile that's much more playful than teasing. "If you wish to know a secret, though.. I likely would not be here, either, if it were up to me. This is what it means to be an officer, I'm afraid. And the more rank you are given, the more expectation to set an example." She lifts her shoulder lightly. "At any rate, you haven't stepped on my feet yet, so you are ahead of half the men here." Her smile blossoms into a dimpled grin.

"I'd trust her with a newborn chick, and he kinda is one." Yggy agrees, and as the song comes to an end, she favors Phin with a little curtsy. "Maybe next year I'll compete too. It was me an' Major Franklin that brought in th'pig, ya know?" She mms, adding, "Stormy looks like he's not enjoyin' himself. I might haveta go fix that for a bit."

Ohhh, gods help poor Taylor. Atalanta's eyes flick over to the Ensign, briefly, before she turns back to Warren and offers up a cheery, "Ohh, don't worry. I plan on terrorizing the poor man myself, later. He won't be left alone for too long." It seems that she's well aware she makes their newest Viper stick a bit nervous — and finds a bit funny, too. "Thank you for the dance, Lieutenant, and do enjoy the rest of the celebrations if our paths don't cross again tonight."

Winston shakes his head. "We're just dancing," he says quietly to Mahasti. "And we're just friends. That's all. Just friends. We can be just friends, can't we?" He gives Mahasti a little twirl, before he leans in to mutter in her ear.

"Artemis favored your hunt, sounds like," Phin says with a grin, when Ygraine mentions the pig. He slows, chuckling at her curtsy, and trying to bow back. He sort of pulls it off. He knows a lot of fake gentleman tricks. He looks over at Holtz, then nods. "Yeah. I saw you two were getting along tonight. Figured that'd happen again sooner or later." He smirks. "Anyway. Yeah. Better get back to him. I'll see you later."

Warren grins at the prospect of Atalanta terrorizing the poor Ensign, "Oh very good sir. See? This is why I like you. Always know how to take care of your viper jocks." Theres a grin, lopsided as it is, and he bows a little towards the Major, "Thank you Major, and I hope you enjoy the rest of the celebration yourself." He turns from the woman and starts to slowly, and somewhat gingerly, make his way towards Bennett with a smile on his face.

Taylor laughs. It's short, but it's an actual, true laugh. "Well, my father always said a true gentlemen knows how to dance.. and I wasn't going to live under his roof without being one of those. So. We know how to dance." He grins at Bennett, even as the song begins it's fade out. "Well we're here, aren't we? No excuse to make fools of ourselves as long as we're supposed to be."

Mahasti smiles "Of course. I just don't want you to get in trouble. I'm glad you did well and have calmed down considerably. Does your back hurt less now?" she asks, quietly, swaying gently. She watches Phin "Dolly." she sing songs "After this dance, could you put me on your card, perhaps?" she asks, she snorts at Winston "Bullshit." she reaches up with one hand to poke Winston right upon the nose with a gigantic grin, making a woo noise as she is suddenly reminded she isn't wearing non slip hospital shoes for once, her heel making a noisy contact with the floor.

Ygraine tsks. "We're always gonna get along." she says with easy confidence. "We ain't enemies 'cause we broke up." She gives Phin's hands a little squeeze before she lets him go, and slips off to find Holtz. But not before she passes Butch and Taylor, calling out, "Hey Violet! You're on my dance card t'night. No wimpin' out. You too, butch." There's a grin and then she's heading for the bar, because she knows the natural environment of the elusive Holtz-beast.

Atalanta turns away from the departing Lieutenant's back, green eyes scanning the dance floor. She'd had other dances arranged, with her fellow champions. Her lips press together as she searches… searches… searches. Even with her natural height and a lovely pair of heels on, it's difficult to spot anyone, until… aha! Lieutenant McBride. He'd promised her the second dance. "Lieutenant!," she calls out to Phin, which really isn't particularly helpful, in this crowd.

"You and me next song, Doc," Phin calls to Mahasti with a half-smile. But first, his boss. He responds to the 'Lieutenant!' with a gopher-like lift of his head. Even with as many people in the crowd it might apply to. "Right here, Maj…uh, Teatime." He subs callsign for rank or 'sir,' weaving through the throng to offer her his arm.

Oh, that laugh Taylor gives her has just made Bennett's day. Her blue eyes glitter with mirth as the music fades, and their steps slow and finally stop, and still she's focused entirely on the young man her arm is draped so gracefully around. "We are here," she agrees, dipping her chin in a fractional nod. "But have a drink or two before you make up your mind about foolishness. A little fun never hurt anyone." And she releases his hand, loops it with the other around his neck, and leans in to give him a relatively chaste peck on the cheek. If it lingers a moment, then that's just her brand of charm. "Thank you for the lovely dance." And then she slips away, easy as you please.

When Holtz sees Ygraine advancing on him, he can guess her intent easily enough. He stamps his cigarette out in a convenient ashtray and rises; he's a little unsteady, but far from stumbling. It takes a hell of a lot more than two glasses of ambrosia to get him that sloppy, after all. He extends a hand to the blonde woman as she nears him. "You'll excuse me if I step on your toes," he says deliberately, careful not to slur his words, "I've had a little to drink."

Winston wrinkles his nose as it gets poked. "Well. All the same," he says. As the song draws to a close, he reaches up and gently plucks the laurel from Mahasti's head. "Next year, I expect you to have one of your own," he says with a soft chuckle. He lifts one of her hands to press a brief kiss to the knuckles. "Thank you for the dance. As for me. I need a drink." He steps back and sketches a little bow, before he turns and lumbers towards the bar and its sweet, sweet alcohol.

There's a quiet chuckle that pours out of the DCAG at being addressed so. "I've always hated that name, you know," she says to Phin, without the slightest hint of reproach. That's what callsigns are for, isn't it? "But I suppose that you're right — it is a celebration, and we stood as equals tonight. Congratulations, by the way, if I haven't had the chance to say so before." One hand slips into the crook of his arm before she leans in, almost conspiratorily, and says, "For tonight, Franklin will do just fine. Or Atalanta, if you prefer, though only my mother has ever used it."

Easy as you please? Well perhaps from Taylor, but there seems to be a Leiutenant who's inserted himself in Bennett's way. Warren smiles, "If it isn't the the lovely St Claire. I do believe I owe you a dance." He extends his hand to the woman as if to make it an offical offer to join him in the next dance.

Mahasti tilts to look at Atalanta, at Phin responding she snickers "S'like yelling Doc in the medbay." she watches Bennett "See that bus driver, Gorgeous woman. I'd like to dance with her at some point." she looks at Bennett a little, pausing "Wait Winston. Want a taste of home?" she asks, shifting to open her medpack and take out a half empty flask "Tauron Whiskey. I'll even letcha drink out of my flask directly tonight. Peaty, smokey, with a medical scent." she asks, cheerfully to Winston, jingling the flask gently before looking around to see who is open for a dance.

Taylor just stands for a moment, his face turning crimson and rooted to the spot. Then he hears a holler and turns to look only to see… Ygraine smirking at him from across the way. "Shit," he says, out loud. Ducking his head he makes his getaway, having abandoned the escape to the bar and instead makes his way to the bonfire. Hopefully unnoticed this time.

"Thank you. Same to you. That was really good shooting," Phin says. His tone is still pretty formal with Atalanta, even if he doesn't 'sir' her every other sentence. He takes her hand in his, placing his other hand on her waist. He is a little stiff about it. She is his boss, and he doesn't want to be accused of trying to cop a feel, even if he is going to dance with her properly. "OK…Atalanta." That was weird, but he's going to try it. "Umm…you can call me Phin, if you want. Or McBride or Dolly or…whatever. Whatever works for you is totally cool by me."

"When have I ever minded, ya big lug?" asks Ygraine cheerily, as she takes him by the hand and tugs him onto the floor. Smirking at Taylor, she notes to Holtz, "I think Violet's a lil' afraid of me." A chuckle, and then, "Ya alright, Kurt?" He might just be blowing off steam, for all she knows, and that's okay.

"Warren." Bennett's flickering smile blossoms into a grin as she's intercepted by the senior viper pilot. Vipers, vipers, everywhere. It's like a snake pit here. "You make an offer I cannot refuse." She places her hand in his, and again allows him to draw her where he will, and set the pace.

Holtz seems distracted, his eyes wandering off elsewhere; they snap back to Ygraine at the sound of his name, though, and he gives her a thin smile. "Hm? Nah, fine. Fine." He takes her hand in his, the other slipping around her waist to place itself at the small of her back as he guides her to the dance floor. There's a quiet snort as she mentions Taylor. "Almost feel sorry for the kid. Flyin' wing for the squadron leader, and ended up getting stuck with the bunk between me and the DCAG."

The smile which Atalanta offers is a sympathetic one, even if it's tinged with a bit of amusement. Really, it's the way the corners of her mouth tug upwards just a smidge too far that gives her away. After all, she was his age once — but that doesn't make it any less entertaining. "Phin will do, I think. I generally only use someone's callsign in the cockpit — or when they've done something to deserve it," she says, lifting a hand to rest it on his shoulder. "Have you been enjoying your evening, thus far? I find it rather surreal, myself. We used to attend the Games every year, on Picon. I never once thought I'd be competing in them, let alone wearing the laurel, and I can't imagine anyone being one-tenth of a percent as impressed by me as I was when my uncles introduced me to Martinez, the year he knocked Geale out in the last two seconds of the twelfth round."

Winston is busily digging a cigar out of his breast pocket as he looks over the selection of alcohols. Ambrosia, wine, and cheap bottom-shelf whiskey aplenty. But when Mahasti dangles that flask at him, his eyes light up. "Oh… Mahasti…" He goes over to take the flask from her, looking down at it with a gentle smile. "I haven't had Taurean whiskey in… gods. Since before Orion left." He looks back up at her. "Thank you, my friend," he says quietly, before he unscrews the cap and indulges in a long whiff from the spout. Sighing happily, he puts the flask to his lips and takes the tiniest of sips. "Mmmh… oh, frak me that's good," he says rapturously.

Warren draws Bennett in close and sets the pace most certainly. Its not too fast as well, he's not moving too fast in his current disposition. "Well the DCAG did tell me I should make sure to get in your good graces. Apparently its good to be on good terms with the bus drivers. Did you know that?" he says with a smirk at that before he leans in and murmers something else quieter to her before pulling back with a little grin.

"He'll do fine." Yggy says with an easy smile, but she peers up into the big man's face - and he's one of the few men on the ship she can actually crane her neck to look up at - and then says quietly, "Ya know, I can tell somethin' going on behind that thick skull of yours. Ya don't gotta tell me if ya don't wanna, but ya know it won't stop me from at least askin' if everythin's alright." She means it of course; she's fond of Holtz and he's still her friend. "I know when you're distracted." she adds teasingly.

Bennett loops not one, but both arms around Warren's shoulders, fingertips barely touching the back of his neck. Again, her eyes do not wander once they've begun dancing. Not for a second; Warren has her full focus. "Is it?" she enquires with mock curiosity. "I did not." She laughs at his whisper, and sidles in closer to speak something quietly in return. Then, "How are you feeling, after your match yesterday? I.. confess I did not watch." There is an apology unspoken in her soft words.

"I've always kind of liked going by my callsign, really," Phin admits. "I mean, I figure, it's like my Fleet name, y'know? Something I earned here, that's not about whatever you were before you joined up." He leads her confidently enough once he gets into it. He even tries to give her a spin, when a beat in the music calls for it. He doesn't move quite as easily as he did with Ygraine, but he knows what he's doing where this stuff is concerned. "Martinez? Sweet. I wish I could've seen him compete. I managed to get tickets to a few events my last year on Picon, when I was finishing flight school. I think I would've seen more watching on television, though. Had to settle for cheap seats. Still, was cool to at least get to see it in person. Figured it was something I'd want to say I did once."

Mahasti makes a gesture "Finish it. Drink is made to share and be enjoyed." she offers, voice soft and warm. "I don't drink a lot of it, but I savor it." she stretches out, again questing for a dance partner, fingers smoothing her dress, looking around again for a partner "Return the flask to my desk in the morning. if its empty nobody will steal it." she offers, towards Winston. She slips toward the fire, intending to warm up a little between dances.

Ygraine does, in fact, know Holtz well. His attention is not fully on the leggy blonde in his arms, as it probably should be; his attention, and his gaze, keep darting to one side. Finally, though, he looks back into his dance partner's eyes, a hand tracing its way up and down her back — a gesture of definite fondness, if not carrying quite the same connotations it might have several months ago. "It's… not somethin' I want to get into," he says to Ygraine before repeating his thin smile from a moment ago. "But trust me, it's nothing major, really." With that he pulls her in close, bodies pressed tightly as they sway and turn in time with the music. And his attention no longer seems to wander.

Winston chuckles softly. "I will. Thank you, Doctor Sir," he says fondly. Settling himself down, he digs for his lighter and lights up his cigar. He reclines in his seat, puffing steadily for a long space, before indulging in another slow sip of the whiskey. Watching the celebration. Being held, partially, in his honor. He looks over the Athenian laurel that he took from Mahasti's head, setting it atop his cover, casting a long glance back towards her as she searches for a dance partner, before he looks up at the sky. "Can you see me, Nike? Can you see me, Eva and Ria? I won. Lord Ares favored me." He takes a long pull from his cigar, loosing the smoke with a gusty sigh. "If only he had favored you too," he mutters. The flask gets set aside for now, exchanged for a bottle of something cheaper. Pulling the cork with his teeth, the big marine starts guzzling.

Warren smirks a bit at the response he gets from Bennett. He shrugs a bit at her question, "Well since you can't see the bruises…and didn't watch." He smiles a bit, "I totally went the distance against the Major. Had him on the ropes a few times, but you know didn't want to embaress my boss infront of everyone. As for how I'm feeling, well I'm a little sore…ok I hurt all over but you know I'm still dancing so, there's that." He does pull Bennett in a bit closer as the pair dances across the floor.

"I've always loved them," she says, with a bit of a wistful sigh. Well, that certainly explains all of her whooping and cheering, from yesterday. "And Martinez? Gods, the man's a towering brute." Was a towering brute more likely, now. "Even bigger in person than he looked watching his matches on television. Really, he makes Major Holtz look petite by comparison." Her gaze stretches past Phin's shoulder, then, seeking the enormous Tauron Viper jock out, as looking for proof of her comparison. It takes her a moment to spot him and when she does, she frowns. Atalanta's attention returns almost immediately to her partner — to the sash of his greys, to be more specific. She stares down at his wings as though she'd never seen a pair of them before. And then she blinks. And then there's a smile. "I can't imagine the energy the crowds must've had, attending as part of the Games. I always went as a civilian, save once after joining the Fleet."

Phin turns briefly to follow Atalanta's look toward Holtz and Ygraine. Smirking all smugly again. Then he directs his attention back on the Major. Giving her another twirl. She might not be entirely prepared for it, but he's coordinated enough that he's not really in danger of dropping her. He did notice her look at his sash. "I didn't have these yet. Still. Did feel pretty good. Like I was telling Yggs, if I'm here for this next year, I'd like to try and get a spot on our version of the Colonial Knights. I mean, if I could manage it. I imagine pretty much every Viper pilot in the Fleet will want to show off."

"Alright." And there it is. Ygraine knows when she can push Storm, and more importantly, when she can't. Most of the time, anyway. So she just enjoys dancing with him, and doesn't press the point. Or any point really, if the large man isn't inclined to talk. When the dance is over, she gives him a grin and doesn't linger, except to say, "Like I said, if ya think ya get outta dancin' with me - or drinkin' with me now, you're in for some serious frakkin' disappointment, kay?"

"Keep thinkin' about the match yesterday," Holtz says abruptly, as if forgetting what he'd said only a moment before. "I almost had that old jarhead. Should've, too. He's a strong old bastard, but I coulda danced circles around him." He musters up a weak smile, but winces a moment later as he suddenly feels himself trod on one of Ygraine's shoes. Well, he did warn her. Luckily, though, the song is over before he can mangle her feet any further, and he steps away with a smirk and a nod. "Wasn't thinkin' anything of the sort."

Taylor finally makes his escape to the bonfire. The sats, few as they are, have all been taken. He contents himself with standing a couple dozen meters away from the roaring blaze. He stops a passing waiter and takes a drink from a tray. Looking down in the glass he smiles weakly to himself and takes a swig. Sighing a little he looks up, staring into the fire.

The twirl — unexpected as it is — brightens Atalanta's expression, her eyes widening and her mouth forming a little "Oh!" of surprise. But she's a graceful woman, in a polished, rather than raw, way. She keeps up, only missing a single beat in her surprise. "If we're here next year, please, remind me. I arranged the flyover this year, and I'd be happy to do so again." And then, as a small reminder that these Games are the prelude to a true battle, she repeats, "If." It's followed by an exaggerated curtsey — clearly her idea of a joke. "Thank you for the dance. It was lovely."

Bennett offers no explanation for not having watched the match, though her eyes are briefly shadowed by something slightly less than carefree mirth. It passes in a moment or two. "It is never good to embarass the boss in front of his men," she agrees, sotto voce. Her hand lifts, and she rifles her fingertips through his hair lightly during a turn. "I think my years of excess have finally caught up to me," she opines, tongue in cheek. "I used to be a competitive runner, did you know? Years ago. And now.." She laughs, the sound a little melancholy.

"You'll get him next time." There's a faint wince when he treads on her, and on impulse, Yggy presses a kiss to Holtz's cheek, adding a firm, "Good." in response to his declaration before she flits away, a thoughtful expression on her face. But her feet - one tread upon and in gallant recovery - take her to the bonfire, so she can stand next to Taylor. "You're next on my dance card, Violet. Gonna man up?"

Phin grins, and laughs, at the 'Oh!' from the DCAG. Maybe pleased with himself for having surprised her. He doffs a bow to her as they break away, though the "If" he repeats to her has a somber trace to it. "Right. Anyway. Pleasure was all mine, Atalanta." With that, he does in search of Doctor Nasreen.

Winston watches the celebrants. His steely gaze resting on Holtz briefly. Maybe he can feel his ears burning. Maybe it's just the booze. That half-grin returns, and he chuckles softly. "You wanna go at me again, don'tcha flyboy?" he mutters around his cigar. "Well… a good scrap any time you say, paisan. Any time." He takes his stogie in hand for another long guzzle from the bottle.

With the song coming to an end and people breaking up Warren lingers for just a moment as he dances with Bennett. When he finally stops with her he smiles, "Shhh. You did just fine. Seemed a little distracted at the start but you ran well." He glances over to the makeshift bar, "Now I'm going to buy you a drink and theres nothing you can do about it. So come now" He winces only a little as he shifts, arm wraped about her waist as he starts directing the bus driver over towards the bar.

Mahasti is quiet, shifting to take her small bag Lleu had left, sitting down and folding her legs and watching the dancers, taking out her cigar box out to dig out a couple photographs, handing them to a deckhand who seems excited, her conversational tone is low but happy. Evidently the deck hands are psyched to have the photos of the viper fly over she took even if they aren't quite professional level. Soon enough she's handing out prints from various events to various aquaintances. Phin is spotted and waved at.

Atalanta's hands sink into the fabric of her dress, half-expecting to need to the lift the hem of her skirts to make it down the stairs without her heels getting caught in them. She has, apparently, forgotten that this is not the annual post-Armilustrium ball, and that she's wearing a dress, not a gown. A subdued chuckle at herself is swallowed down before she shakes her head and begins to make her way to the bar. She'd abandoned her drink two dances ago, after all. The woman is in need of a refill.

Taylor looks down at the ECO next to him, though he doesn't have to look far. "Wouldn't I have to go 'down to fit?"

Phin sees the wave, returning it and heading in Mahasti's direction once he's got a bead on her. "Hey. You had a spot on my card, right?" Though his attention is caught by the prints she's handing out. "Nice. You get shots of all the stuff from the games?"

Bennett leans her forehead against Warren's shoulder briefly, as the music again draws to a close. And then he too is favoured with a delicate kiss on the cheek, before he leads her away to the bar. "Do they even take cubits around here?" she asks as they walk, hip to hip. "I thought it was on a barter system." She might be joking. Might. "Doctor!" she calls to Mahasti in passing, spotting her with the camera. "Why aren't you dancing?"

Taylor looks down at the ECO next to him, though he doesn't have to look far. "Wouldn't I have to go 'down' to fit?" Short jokes. Always fit for a guy his height. Plus the ECO has had a strange effect of loosening him up lately as well. He takes a swig of his drink. "Though I suppose I don't have a choice, either?" He grins jokingly.

While waiting for Taylor's reply, Ygraine casts a glance over the party - someting she spots in the direction of the bar suddenly makes her grin like a cat with a bowl of cream. "Well that explains that." she says to herself before looking back at Taylor. "Surrender is your only option." she says cheerily, but she's not altogether serious.

It doesn't take long for Holtz to find himself back at the bar after his dance with Ygraine ends. His half finished glass is still there, sitting undisturbed in front of the seat he vacated. He quickly picks it up and knocks it back, savoring the sweet hint of lemon in the otherwise bitter drink as he waves for another.

Warren laughs a bit at Bennett's comments, "And I suppose it would be poor form for me to trade you for your own drink eh?" He jokes a bit on the way to the bar as Bennet calls out to Mahasti. He smirks at the question as he orders a pair of drinks, obviously intending one for himself and one for Bennett.

Mahasti smiles "Yes, I did. I got a good one of Toast getting socked in the face!" she offers with a laugh. "Because I wanted to sit down a moment. I had to do a lot of print work to make sure some special people got souvenirs." although the ones in her lap are four by sixes. "How about we dance, we get a drink and I'll give you a few of the colonial knight fly over." she smiles at Bennett "Will you perhaps dance with me in a bit, chouette?" she asks, cheerful, standing to offer Phin her small hands and a bright smile. "You can help yourself to prints, you know."

Taylor raises his hands over his head, his glass hanging loosely in his fingertips. "You've got me square in sights, Milkshake. Take me away." He lowers his hands and laughs lightly, turning to follow her. "Hang on, you have a dance card? You know how to write?"

"That'd be cool!" Phin says, all of boyish excitement at the prospect of a picture of the knock-off Colonial Knights. Like he doesn't fly a Viper for a living. "Thanks. Yeah. Let's do it." He takes her hand and leads her back into the dancing space.

When Atalanta stops at the bar, she pauses for a moment, considering her choices from what must be a slowly dwindling supply of the more familiar spirits — ones that will, likely, be substituted for the product of someone's illegal still, sooner or later. The consideration makes no difference. She's already chosen her drink for the night, and so raises her hand with the easy expertise of a woman who has frequented Caprica City's trendiest nightclubs. Brandies. The woman's drinking brandies - soured. One brow arches at Holtz, as he knocks back the last of his drink and quickly asks for another. "Major," she says, offering him a perfect smile. "I thought you'd be dancing with Lieutenant Kane tonight."

Winston peers at the bottle in his hand. It's not quite a quarter of the way gone. He's got a ways to go. He looks back at the celebration. Picking up Mahasti's flask, he carefully tucks it into a pocket and rises, collecting his cover, his laurel, and the bottle. He lifts that bottle towards the sky. "Here's for my girls. Here's for the unresting dead. Here's for the Lord of War." He pulls down another lengthy guzzle of whiskey, then turns to lumber away from the celebration.

Bennett grins at mention of Warren being suckerpunched in the face, but it's a good-natured grin. She knows Warren won't mind her having a little fun at his expense. Right? Blue eyes trail after the man, watching him on the heels of something he murmurs to her, and then snap back to the redheaded doctor. "Mm? Certainly, though I think I may sit out one or two first. Lieutenant, please take good care of her until then." A wink to Phin as she sashays away. "Good evening, sir," is sent Atalanta's way, along with a curve of painted red lips.

"I can read, too. It's all very subversive." smirks Milkshake as she moves into dancing form with Taylor. He may be surprised to find she's a good partner, suiting herself to the skill level of the person leading her. Though as Mahasti and Phin start their own twirl at the floor, she's unable to risk flicking her finger under her nose at Phin and going cross-eyed at him before she goes past.

Bennett adds, to the DCAG, "I must say, you look stunning tonight. You really should let your hair down, so to speak, more often." Which is funny, because it's up.

"And here I was thinking you were just the food finder." Taylor sets his drink on a nearby table, completely forgotten as he turns and takes Ygraine into a dancing form and begins to move smoothly. No spins or twirls, nothing intricate, but just steady and smooth.

"Oh, ya like the pig?" Yggy asks as she lets Taylor guide him along. "That me, mighty huntress, though th'lady that took th'laurel got off th'kill shot, t'be entirely honest." Giving him one of her feral smiles, she queries, "Like the dress? To be clear, I mean mine."

Mahasti laughs softly at Phin "Now, ground rules, no grabbing my ass - I'm drunk and I'll fall on it and I do that enough trying to manage the stairs after a double." she jokes, "And no starring at my scar." she offers, softly. Her fingers gently curl around Phin's arm gently "Pardon if I step on your toes a little?" she asks, softly, smiling fondly.

Holtz snorts as he pulls out a fresh cigarette, tapping the filter on the bar several times before lighting it. Once it's in place, he folds his arms as he turns to face the DCAG. His refill is placed on the bar next to him, but it goes untouched for the moment. "And whatever would have given you that idea, Major?" he responds with the thinnest of smirks. The words are spoken a little more archly than is his usual style, but it's not entirely surprising when one considers he's on his fourth glass of strong liquor. "Besides, it looks like the lieutenant is all danced out." Last he saw her, anyway, she was over by the bonfire.

Warren just shoots a grin back to Bennett for the moment as he waits for the drinks. When they arive he does offer one to her without saying anything, just that lopsided grin. He takes a drink from his letting her talk with the others for now.

Her drink quickly in hand, Atalanta turns at the sound of Bennett's voice. She was about to make a comment to Holtz, when she's presnted with the Captain in black. It takes her a moment, to full register the other woman's crimson lips and leather pants. When she does, there's a spark that lights in her eyes and a sly grin that slowly creeps across her face. "I'm afraid that they won't allow me to fly CAP in a cocktail dress, no matter how many times I present my argument," she retorts. "But thank you. I'd say the same — sincerely, I assure you — but I'm afraid that it would sound like a cheap echo now." One brow arches at the leather pants. "Those are positively sinful, in the best possible way."

Phin catches the finger-nose gesture from Ygraine and leans around Mahasti's shoulder. So he can, in a display of mature officer behavior, stick his tongue out at the ECO and cross-eye her back. He has his tongue back in his mouth by the time he straightens up and looks back at his partner, but it takes him a second to uncross his eyes. He chuckles some. "Anyway. Umm. Right. No ass-grabbing. Sounds good. My toes are pretty tough. No worries." And with that, he starts to lead her in time to the music. He doesn't try anything particularly fancy, but he knows the steps.

"Pig?" Taylor turns his head and for the first time notices the rather large, and by now, half-eaten pig near the bonfire. "That was you? Not bad for a blueberry." At her smile his nervousness begins to kick back in, and he eyes her cautiously. "Only yours? But I worked so hard on mine.. It's quite nice." He smiles for a moment, then clucks his tongue. "Oh, and you look very wonderful too," he adds, off-handedly.

Of course, only Bennett Saint Clair would show up to a party dressed in skintight leather and red lipstick, where everyone else is in crisp greys and flowing dresses. The worst part is, she's entirely shameless about it; not a whit of awkwardness. "No, I suppose not," she answers, accepting her drink from Warren with a smile of thanks. "More's the pity, I think." Whatever Atalanta is playing at, the dark-haired bus driver is more than willing to play back. "If Warren does not mind, would you like to dance the next one with me, Major?" And given the fact that she's gazing right at Atalanta, it's a good bet she's not talking to Holtz.

Mahasti eyes Phin "Er if you don't want to you don't have to if you don't want Dolly." she offers, holding his shoulder properly, her body language going prim. She leans close to Phin, whispering softly "Any idea what would be nice little gift items for Maia and Bennett for helping me get this dress, these shoes, and the accessories?" its a conspiratory tone too. She's plotting.

"Like I said, me and th'major, she got th'kill shot, and pee ess, you're a jerk." Ygraine wrinkles her freckled nose at Taylor, but she's grinning while she does it so quite posibly she means it with less emphasis than one might assume.

Atalanta glances back over her shoulder to Holtz, saying simply, "Would you excuse me?", though she really doesn't offer him the chance to reply. Instead, she simply takes another long sip of her noew refreshed drink, sets it down on the bar — on a napkin, even if it is a temporary construction — and offers Bennett her arm. "I would be delighted, Captain," she says.

Warren shakes his head, "I'm certainly not going to stand in the way of two beauties dancing" He bows his head towards the Major and Bennett before taking a sip of his drink. And then there's Atalanta offering Bennett her arm and he can't helpp but grin, "Go show us how its done."

"Nah, I'm having fun. Games've been fun all around," Phin says. He's not exactly prim with Mahasti but, as with Atalanta, he doesn't try to cop a cheap feel. He considers the question. "They'd probably both like sweets. Real candies if you can get them. Anyone would, really."

Holtz just snorts in reply, giving a tiny shake of the head with a wry expression on his face as he raises his glass to the back of the retreating major. "Don't let me keep you," he deadpans softly after her, easing himself back onto his stool as he sips at his drink, following it up with a drag from his cigarette.

Bennett gives Warren a wink for his magnanimousness, takes a tiny sip of her drink, and sets it down nearby for later retrieval. And then off she goes, looping her arm with the blonde Major's and leaning in to intimate something very quietly.

Taylor looks at Ygraine with a pouting look, which doesn't look as charming on a man as one might think. "Aww but that's all a part of my charm, didn't you know?" He grins, then allows himself a slightly bow of the head. "I relent, however. You do look.. stunning." He blushes, averting his gaze as he says it, quickly and quietly.

Mahasti watches Phin "I actually make caramels sometimes. Fresh, soft, chewy salted caramels with goats' milk a little sugar and butter." she smiles "I could make them some though." she offers. following Phin's lead with surprising grace "I've always been terrible at dancing because where most girls hips are? Its the middle of my back." she jokes, taking her time. She leans slightly to watch Phin's face "You really do look like a perfect little doll, you know. So cute and youthful." she giggles out. "I'm glad my weeks might calm down."

Atalanta's lashes flutter a few times. Clearly, whatever it was that Bennett said to her came as a surprise. Though taken aback by the comment, it's only for one second. She has, perhaps, had just enough to drink tonight to slow her thinking. Her normally pale skin is a bit flushed, though that may also be the result of the exertion of dancing, or the heat of the bonfire, or simply the effect her ice-white dress has on complexion. "She's a lovely woman, I'm certain, though I've only really come to know her in a… professional context, I suppose is the word? There hasn't been very much time for me to socialize since my transfer."

"Thank ya." Ygraine is an easy target when complimented. Presumably. But she briefly lifts her chin and smacks a kiss to one of Jacob's ridiculous perfect cheekbones. "That wasn't so bad, yeah?"

Phin looks down at Mahasti's hips. "Is that possible? Like, anatomically?" He assumes it is. He's no doctor, after all. He chuckles, blushing some. "Thanks. I think. So you're telling me you think this mustache is a good choice?" It really doesn't suit him, but he's taking the opportunity to fish for compliments about it. "I don't know. I've got a twin brother in the Marines, and in a lot of ways I don't think people notice we look alike until we're standing next to each other. People see what they want to see, and if the image works for you, you can just coast on it." He hasn't been drinking, but he's being reflective nonetheless.

Bennett does not so much as hesitate in taking the lead; one might think that dancing with another woman is something she's done a time or two before, for how easily the shift comes to her. Maybe, again, she's just been schooled in the social graces like Atalanta herself has. "No?" A deft turn, a curious smile, and once more her dance partner has her full attention. "You know, I am sure the wing would appreciate seeing more of you, sir. Though I have known commanders who preferred to remain.. aloof, I suppose." The subject of conversation is thus shifted away from whatever caught the blonde so off-guard.

Mahasti laughs a bit "I am barely five foot one. I'm short." she pauses, looking up at Phin's moustache "I don't know, what the frak do you feed it?" she asks, reaching up to rub Phin's stache. with one dainty hand "I think a less bush master style would look better with your face. You growing it for a reason? I'm trying to grow my hair back out so I can donate it. As long as its not grabbable it shouldn't be an issue." she offers. She ponders "I wasn't aware. I don't pay much attention to people unless they talk to me or come into the medical ward. It is easier to let people approach me when they are ready to approach, I think." she pauses "I am jealous. I'd of given almost anything to have a sibling as a child. I probably would not of had to study and excel in extra cirriculars so much and possibly could have done normal things." she offers, softly laughing.

Quite the opposite of the usual draining of color, Taylor's face could have turned so red as to cook eggs. He smiles boyishly, letting out a couple halting chuckles. "Well. I mean it might have been. I think I might be developing a rash or something." His smile turns to a mischievious grin. "Or not. Maybe you're not so bad for a backseater."

"As I understand it, she'd been flying with Lieutenant Vashti for several months and on several important missions," Atalanta replies, arching both brows. Despite fully intending to spend her evening enjoying the celebrations, it seems that she slips back into discussing business far too easily. "Of course, that was before I received the transfer request and reassigned the Lieutenant to flying with you." There's a slight turn to the corners of her mouth now; it is almost, although not quite, a frown. "Either way, it really shouldn't be any of my concern. Perhaps that's what you meant, by aloof?" The question hangs in the air for a moment— hopeful, not demanding. A demand would spoil the moment, and she seems to be gliding elegantly along in Bennett's grasp, her own arms wrapped around the other woman's hand and and shoulders.

"Image," Phin replies, as to his reason behind his mustache. "And luck, I guess you could say. It's for the Picon invasion." As if that made sense. He can't help but laugh when she tugs on his face. He turns her in time to the music, shrugging at the rest. "My brother and I looked out for each other. All you can really ask for. I'm not sure we had normal hobbies, either, but we got along."

"I can't tell if that was a backhanded compliment toward backseaters in general, or me in particular." remarks Ygraine wyly. "Either way I'll take it, because gods know if ya flung out an actual compliment I might get th'vapors and faint."

Holtz sneaks a glance back out to the dance floor, running a finger under his collar with a grimace. One of the things he'd never liked about dress greys, they're made for comfort even less than the standard blues. Finally giving into temptation, he reaches up to undo the collar clasp, taking a deep breath as the pressure subsides from his neck. Seeing Mahasti touch Phin's upper lip, he can guess well enough what they're talking about even if he can't quite make out words from this distance. "It's not a mustache, he rented out his face to a damn dead rat!" he shouts raucously, with a taunting grin in Phin's direction.

Mahasti watches it "Are you going to use it to blanket them? Coz it is kinda awkward looking and it looks like it'd suck to kiss and nuzzle against." she offers shrugging "Are you sure Picon wants it?" she asks, softly, brows knitting "I mean medically what if you get a bloody nose? And don't you slop food all over? It seems so … unhygenic." the doctor looks squicked, more so than if Phin had puked on her "Okay I'll give you a full bottle of wine to trim it down to less of a racoon tail on your face."

"Both sounds like the safest avenue," Taylor says to Ygraine, chuckling. "And by the gods whatever you do don't faint.. then I'll be alone and Zeus save me if I have to dance with another senior officer.. then -I'll- be doing the fainting. So friend-to-friend.. or something like that.. no fainting." At Holtz's shout he turns his head, the corner of his lip tugging down. "He doesn't sound well," he mutters under his breath.

Bennett arches a brow slightly as it seems Atalanta is intent on discussing work during playtime. But who is she to argue with her boss? "I.. confess I am not sure whom you're speaking about, sir," she answers softly, expression quizzical. She, of course, is accustomed to flying with a backseater, and it seems to extend to how she dances; she leads quite well, and does not step on toes. She's also about the same height as the DCAG, so they are almost precisely eye to eye while they dance. "And no, I more meant.." She presses her lower lip between her teeth a moment, thinking. And then smiles suddenly. "Please forget I said anything. You were, by the way, fantastic in the archery competition. I served with someone once who reminds me of you, sir. An Artemisian."

"Hmm? Holtz? Oh, he's fine." Ygraine is certain of it. "Maybe a bit into his cups, is all. I mean, he may be dealin' with a trouble, but he's a perfectly healthy specimen. And if he ain't, well - the truth will out eventually, it always does." She seems rather confident about that, and content to let it be. "Nothin' t'fret." she says, and smiles up at Taylor in what she hopes is a reassuring manner adding gleefully, "I'd tell ya he was all bark and no bite, except well, I've sparred with him before."

"It's totally groomed!" Phin objects to Mahasti' to the maligning of the cleanliness of his facial hair. "And I don't really drink that much. Might want to save the bottle for someone who'd appreciate. Though I wouldn't mind an ambrosia after this song's done, if there's any left. Anyway, it's just something I'm trying." He is unswayed. Even by the teasing from his flightmates. Though Holtz's yelling does get a roll of his eyes and a shout back, "Thought I'd give you a chance to be the pretty one, Storm! You're welcome!"

Whatever else they may have been discussing, whatever confusion might have been written on Atalanta's face, it all slips away in the face of a compliment. No — no, in the face of that particular compliment. It should come as no wonder why, given her participation in the archery contest and the stylized tattoo of a bow and arrow on her back, plainly visible with the cut of the white dress that she's wearing. "Thank you, Captain," she says, the words heartfelt, the look of pleasure that comes over her face entirely sincere. "I served a year as an arktoi in the Lady's temple, when I was still a girl, and continued on in her service even after attaining my majority. It's incredibly kind of you to believe I do a credit to the Maiden Huntress."

Mahasti makes a face at Phin "It looks like a germ magnet." Annnd out of nowhere the doctor takes a sanitizing wipe to gently daub at Phin's moustache with it. "There, you aren't quite as disgusting, annnd she's carefully cleaning her fingers, tucking the used wipe away. She dances with Phin yet. "Are you sure its worth the harassment?" she asks, squeezing pooooor Phin's fingers a little. She's looking a little uncomfortable. Possibly the shoes.

Taylor frowns, turning back to his dance parter. "If you say so.. but I do fly the man's wing.. that makes me responsible, both in the Pit and on the deck." He glances back towards Holtz for just a moment before shrugging and turning back to Ygraine. "Suppose I'll just have to keep watch."

"The day I need yer help for that'll be a sad day indeed!" Holtz calls back, but he's smirking as he says it. He snorts in mock indignance. He is, indeed, a bit in his cups, but only a bit. He's had enough that he's rather more ebullient than is his usual habit, but he's far from being falling down drunk. He hasn't even started slurring his speech yet.

"What the…?" Phin is caught off-guard by the sanitary wipe, so much that he steps on her toes. "Uh. Oops." He takes a second to regroup while he mutters that not-quite-apology. "How do you deal with working in Sickbay if you're so anti-germ?" He's kind of teasing, but also actually wondering about this.

Bennett, too, brightens at the expression that comes over Atalanta's face. As if she's filing this little tidbit away for later dissection. "Oh, I…" An arktoi. "..I did not know." The words are soft, and hold a reverence that no-one other than the Major is likely to pick up on. "It seems we are rather diametrically opposed then, in our patronages." A spin, and then a dip, so she might speak more quietly, "I am forsworn to Dionysus, myself." Virgin huntress, meet the god of wine, madness and sexual excess. The raptor driver has to grin as she lets Atalanta up again, blue eyes bright with amusement.

Ygraine cocks her head. "This ain't th'pit or th'deck, Violet." she tells him gently. "And he's a grown man. If ya listen t'nothin' else I say, believe this: tryin' t'Mama Duck Stormy is a bad idea. I get that th'feelin' of camraderie, really, I do. But he's responsible for himself, th'same way you're responsible for your own self. K?"

Mahasti makes a face at having her toes squished, a little yelp escaping. "Because when I'm working I'm eradicating it, and most people coming in aren't germy they are bleedy and given that the fleet tests for BBP and STI every 6-12 months on all personelle, there is nothing a C-pack can't cure." she offers with a sigh "Also you hit a point you just don't think about it because someone's precious life is in your hands." she offers to Phin, sort of pulling away from him with a half smile, looking for her seat and her house slippers.

"And it seems we've dressed to match," Atalanta says with an easy laugh — one that slips, just a bit, into a hint of tipsy revelry at being dipped. It seems that, frankly, the God of Wine may be getting the upper hand — or at least the God of Brandy, who must be Lord Dionysus, a bit on the burned side. "Ohh!", she says, as she's pulled back up into Bennett's arms. Surprise, obviously, and also delight. "How incredibly serendipitous. I don't think we could've done a better job of it if we'd tried."

Taylor hangs his head slightly. "Pit, desk, grass… all the same isn't it? I'm not tryin' to play Mama, I mean, I just…" He sighs, shaking his head slightly. "It's all so much easier just hiding in my bunk."

"Thanks for the dance, Doc," Phin says, adding, "Sorry about your feet." He offers her another of those little parting bows before he goes, and heads back to the bar to see what's left for beverages.

"Easier, but not better." Ygraine points out gently. "You're doin' fine." She gives him a pat on the arm, suggesting, "Why don't we get Phin and have ourselves a sit?" she offers, adding, "Ya ain't a bad dancer, for an introvert."

Bennett laughs as well, and winces only a little as she straightens with her partner, and aggravates that sore shoulder from the games a day prior. "Agreed." There is a wink, and her palm brushes against Atalanta's, fingertips to fingertips as the dance draws to a close. "Thank you, sir, it was lovely to speak with you." And no, the blonde is not immune to a kiss, chaste, to her cheek, that brings with it a whiff of vanilla as Bennett withdraws. "Do enjoy the rest of your evening." And for some reason, her gaze lingers a moment as if to imply something more, before she slips away.

Mahasti smiles "Yeah no big thing. Not gonna get me a drink?" she chirps, taking off her shoes carefully to look at her toes. They aren't the happy tawny color she is used to. She takes her house slippers to pull on her feet - sure it isn't formal, but given she has to be on her feet fairly often. She takes the box of photographs, putting her shoes in her bag before looking like she's going sneak off without anymore fuss.

One hand reaches up to touch her cheek. It seems that the DCAG is going to spend half her night in a state of surprise at one thing or another, even if she's yet to have taken offense to anyone. Her gaze wanders after Bennett for a few long, lingering seconds before she blinks twice and turns to look back at the bar. Her drink is still resting there, and so there she heads, looking as though she's entirely too pleased with herself and her evening.

Taylor grins in spite of himself. "Well that is because I'm a true gentleman, of course." He nods then, gesturing for her to lead the way. "A sit sounds good. Quiet, not dangerous of running into brass.. too much around here for a layman like mine's safety."

The upper-shelf ambrosia is running low by this point, so Phin contents himself with ordering a beer. Which he takes a few quick gulps of. It's sort of doubling as hydration as much as alcohol. He's spent most of the night dancing rather than drinking. "Having fun, sir…err…Atalanta?" he asks the DCAG as she joins the bar. Stumbling over her first name, though he does manage it.

Cigarette smoke shoots from Holtz's nostrils as he looks aside, watching with slightly glassy eyes as a white-clad Atia makes her way back to the bar. "Quite an outfit." It's not entirely sure, however, whether he's referring to Atia's dress… or to Bennett's leather pants. "You dance well, Major," he says offhandedly a moment later, apparently not inclined to press the bounds of familiarity, unlike Phin.

Well, so much for being a party animal. Bennett, who seems to have either forgotten where she left her drink, or is purposely avoiding imbibing more than the tiny sip she started off with, sets off to find Mahasti. Something is murmured quietly to the woman, along with an apologetic smile and a light touch on her arm, before she slips off entirely. No good-byes; she'll be seeing them all first thing in the morning for briefing, anyway.

"C'mon, then." Ygraine takes the hand held for dancing and turns it into a hand held for tugging as she heads for some of the seating, as she looks over her shoulder and calls out, "Hey Phinny, ya comin'?" And goes to settle down. If Taylor ends up next to her, he'll wind up being used as a leaning post. That's how Yggy rolls.

"Yes," she replies to Phin, the tone a bit…. automatic. "I've been having a wonderful evening. Thank you." If there is nothing else to be said for proper manners, they at least allow Atalanta to supply an appropriate conversational response, even whil she continues to process the last few seconds. She looks for her drink, half-forgotten, and wraps a hand around it gratefully once found. Two swallows, and her brandy is gone. She lets the taste sit on the tip of her tongue for just a moment, before dabbing delicately at her mouth, lest any stray droplets of liquid remain. "I do love to dance; I always have." To Phin? To Holtz? To both, perhaps? An impulsive addition is far more clear. "Dance with me, Major?"

Mahasti leans on Bennett brifly as she whispers, going cherry red in the process as she heads off for somewhere, the small woman is carefully undoing her hair pin as she heads off - likely to snag a bit of rack time. She's had enough for the day, lugging her crap with her, pausing to set viper photo infront of Phin, and a Photo of Holtz before he began punching and getting punch in the ring for him. Atia is even given a photo of one of her nice form spear throws on the way out, giving a good night wave and headed out without much more than «Good Night» she chirps in Leonese, definitly going to bed.

Mahasti leaves, heading toward the Wilderness Checkpoint [WC].

Holtz is turning back to the bar when Atia's question registered in his mind. He turns back to face her with a peaked eyebrow, obviously taken off guard. He bites off his first response, simply sitting in silence before slowly standing, tugging on the hem of his uniform top. "… All right," he says finally, offering a hand in her direction.

"Hmm?" Phin turns his head at the sound of his nickname, and summons, from Ygraine. "Yeah, just a sec," he calls back. He offers a quick "Thanks" to Mahasti for the photo and bids a quick, "Uh, have fun" to his superiors. Before taking his drink to go join Ygraine and Taylor. "Hey, Wheels. Good to see you out of your bunk."

Inviting the man to dance with her is, at least, one way of getting him out of cups — one that doesn't involve, as Ygraine put it, "Mama Ducking" him. Of course, she seems to realize what, exactly, she's blurted out only after he's offered her his hand. She considers it briefly, before slipping her own into it, and rising from her seat. "You as well, Phin," Atalanta answers softly. It is likely to be the last time she uses his given name; the celebrations will be over, come morning.

Taylor follows after Ygraine, raising a hand to Phin as he joins thin. "Hey, Dolly. Yeah I figured it's good for people to see my bright shiny face every once in a while. That or it was the orders to report and no CAP excuse. One of the two."

Now that she has Taylor as a lean to this is excellent because Phinny gets her feet. One would think Ygraine had planned it. "Havin' fun?" she asks gleefully to Phin, noting to Taylor, "It's good for ya t'get out. Ya won't be so stiff and nervous." She then adds slyly to the viper Lieutenant, "And remember Phinny, no grabbin' asses."

"Did you get to see any of the competitions yesterday?" Phin asks. He's still wearing his laurel crown around his temples. Which he seems to realize is a little silly. Once he's sitting he takes it off and idly toys with it. He looks up when Ygraine uses his lap as a foot stool, though. Not that he objects. He's used to this sort of thing. Her last comment makes him choke-snort a laugh. "Gods, other people heard that?"

Considering that he's been drinking and he's currently leading his boss out onto the dance 'floor', Holtz looks surprisingly collected. He smoothly wraps a trunklike arm around the DCAG's trim waist and draws her in close to him as the next song starts up. His lead is surprisingly subtle as he guides her into motion, a brow peaked slightly as he looks down at his dance partner.

"I saw ya run! And I saw the spear throw." Ygraine reports, belatedly realizing the question may not be directed at her. Tilting her head back, she half lids her eyes, and lets out a contented little sigh.

"You're supposed to say something, Major," Atalanta advises him chidingly, returning the expression of one quirked brow. "Not simply stare at me as though I might be a viper." Clearly, the backwater Tauran has never been instructed in the social niceties that accompany formal events and who better to instruct him than the rigid Caprican with a well-regarded family and blood as blue as the bay? "You might comment on the music, or the food, or the Games. The Games would be the most fitting, given the circumstances."

Taylor leans back in a chair, glancing down at the Raptor ECO leaning on him noncahlantly and raising an eyebrow. "No, I didn't. Managed to pull a CAP shift during them and then.. hide in my bunk." He grins a toothy smile.

"You're not?" Holtz asks in mock surprise, theatrically looking down at himself as if checking for a snakebite before rolling his eyes slightly. "What, no mention of the weather?" Well, when it comes to the aforementioned social niceties, he's certainly at best a work in progress. There's a snort. "The music's passable, though I didn't try the food. The Games… well." A slight frown comes over his face as he jerks his head back slightly, as if to indicate the fact that there's no laurel sitting atop it.

"I know you did. I heard the woo'ing," Phin says to Ygraine with a grin, when she mentions her spectating of the competitions. "Thanks, by the way." He puts his laurel back on his brow after playing with it, tilting it at a jaunty angle this time. Taylor's comment about hiding in his bunk makes him laugh. "This your first time down on the planet?"

"We're gonna haveta fix that." Ygraine declares, head tilted back on Jacob's shoulder. People, apparently, are her furniture. "Phinny and I know all th'best places." She seems certain of that. "And knowin' a few people in th' gardens helps."

"It was a very good fight," Atalanta replies, though she really doesn't expect it to do very much to console the man. Though her tone is cordial and little more, the turn of her normally refined features is clearly sincere. She tilts her head back for a moment, assessing him with slitted-eyes — a gesture which highlights the fact that she's starting to get her first lines, right at the outer edges of them. "The man had four or five inches on you in height, probably just as many in reach, and… I'd say thirty pounds?" It is a surprisingly accurate assessment, particularly considering the source. "Of course, if you had been alternating your blows consistently - head, body, head, body — you may have still won. He'd drop his guard to block each alternating shot, leaving him wide open. I know the face is a tempting target," she says, perhaps a bit of that promised venom there, "but body shots do more damage. I'm sure you know that. And you hit like a damned aurochs."

Taylor nods slowly. "First time, yeah.. and Milkshake you can just sit right there and lean." He pats her forehead as she leans back on him. "Wheels will come rolling out when he feels like it. You can just keep bringing him blueberries in his bunk."

Phin eases down in his chair, one arm resting on Ygraine's legs while he finishes his beer with the other hand. He's content to veg after a night of activity, and enjoy the company and the strains of music. And squint at his superior officers dancing.

Ygraine's eyelashes lift briefly to look across at Phin languidly, and then lower again. "I might bring ya blueberries; ya are a rather fabulous backrest." she remarks to Taylor and then yawns hugely. "None of us have early CAP or Alert5 tomorrow, right? I'm so tempted t'crash planetside."

Indeed, it's not much consolation for the proud Tauran major. A certain amount of bitterness plays across his features as Atia delivers her assessment, yet neither does Holtz dismiss it out of hand. He does look a bit contemplative when she starts pointing out specific strategies — although it's not sure whether he's contemplating what she's saying or the pure strangeness of the idea of this woman, of all people, offering him fighting tips — though he rolls his eyes at the edge that enters her tone at the end. "Yeah, one of these days I'll figure that out," he ripostes drolly. There's a pause, and he looks almost surprised as he looks back down after her last comment. "Careful, Major, that almost sounded like a compliment."

"I'm not on until the afternoon," Phin says. And the prospect of camping on the planet plainly appeals to him. "Yeah. Weather's plenty warm for it. Let's do it. No telling when we'll get another chance."

Taylor shakes his head. "Pulled the late afternoon shift." He glances up at the night sky, then down over to the bonfire. "Good a place as any. Catch a couple extra hours rack time."

"Of course you would think so," she says, shaking her head. It almost dislodges her laurel, which she notices precisely in time to stop it from falling out of her hair. One hand reaches up, releasing her hold on him, in order to catch it. Reflexively, she looks up — back — as though she might be able to catch sight of the thing on her own head, which is obviously a ridiculous notion. She stops, as she adjusts it, cutting the dance short. There's a pause, and a smile, and something which she murmurs up to him while trying to tame her hair. Judging by expression, which is both expectant and smug, Atalanta has had exactly enough brandy to think that whatever she's said is especially clever, and is simply waiting for him to guffaw in reply — that, or possibly give her a bruise on the other side, to match. If it's the latter, she certainly looks awfully cheeky about the possibilty of enraging the big man.

"Well, consider the source," Holtz deadpans with an almost mischevious expression. His hands fall to his sides as she breaks off the dance, but he seems ready to resume once she's finished adjusting her hair… until he catches her whisper. It's quiet, almost too quiet to hear, and by the way he just stands there and stares at her with his mouth open, for a moment he doesn't seem to believe he heard what he heard. His reaction is at least close to one of the outcomes she'd foreseen, however; he finally begins to laugh, an earthy, throaty sound that bubbles forth almost of its own volition, and without a word in response he simply tilts his head off to the side before taking her hand and walking slowly in the direction he'd indicated.

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