MD #202: The Barter Economy
The Barter Economy
Summary: Lleu has a thing he wants from Atticus, Atticus has a thing he wants from Lleu. Deals are struck.
Date: 27/10/2017
Related Logs: Picon PoW
Lleufer Atticus Petra 
Brig - Deck 3 - Battlestar Orion
The battlestar's brig is comprised of a line of four individual cells organized in separate walled-off bays. Each cell is six feet wide by eight feet long and possesses a bed and toilet. Whenever even one cell is occupied, so too is the metal desk and chair at the entrance hatch — and backup for the guard is never far away. Each cell has had their bars specifically reinforced to prevent a Line member from being able to gain access or escape. Brig rules are posted behind the desk on a white panel with blocked black lettering.

Things have been very quiet and Atticus no doubt has had a lot of time to read, or exercise in his small cell space. It's better than being in solitary confinement as he is now allowed visitors, but that doesn't mean he's been getting any. The hatch down the corridor unseals and someone arrives. Lleufer speaks to the MP on duty and signs himself in, then wanders on down to where Atticus is housed. The Gunnery Sergeant stops to take up his usual position to lean against the bulkhead in the corridor facing the cell and loosely hooks his thumbs on his duty belt to get comfortable. Arpay eyes study the brig cell's occupant at his leisure without making a greeting.

Atticus has in fact had precisely no visitors, unless you count the daily interactions with the guards, like meal time. As a result, the effect of the past week or so has been almost a form of solitary-light, and it's perhaps just starting to show on him a bit. He's exercising less, reading slower, and generally staring at the walls a bit more than he had been before. Of course, the three weeks of stubble don't help with the overall look either. He's still behaving himself though, giving the MPs no bother, and right now he's reading one of the actual physical books Petra has lent him, which means it's a reasonable time before he notices he's no longer alone. Having the decency to look faintly apologetic he carefully sets the book down so as not to risk damaging it, then slides off the bunk and pads a few feet towards the bars, stopping short. "Gunnery Sergeant," he greets formally, "how may I be of assistance?"

Lleufer gives his guest an upnod, "Atticus. I see there's been an oversight. Would you care to be able to remove or tidy your beard? I imagine we can use an electric razor to remove however much of it as you like and a cream to keep it tidy." An easy shrug, "If you want to be of assistance, you'd help me find a way to win over your loyalty. But, I understand about your oaths."

Lleu's question has Atticus subconsciously reaching up and rubbing at his chin, he might be throw the worst of the itchy phase, but yeah… "Please," he says sincerely, "I usually shave it all." No weird facial hair styles for him, although there is perhaps just a faint bit of trepidation at the idea of an electric razor. That’s not something he's ever had to use before. The next bit gets a faint smile from him and he acknowledges it with a slight nod. "I can't blame you for trying Sergeant, but put yourself in my position. Would you switch sides?"

Ynyr considers the question, "I might, eventually, if I came to believe that I was on the wrong side and had been lied to all along. Which you have been. Problem is how to convince you of that truth. I can show you all kinds of films and documentaries of the time of peace we enjoyed for more than twenty years before the Skath arrived and enslaved humanity, but were not here when the machines came. So I can't show you the terrible things they have done to our people. I could only, perhaps, accumulate accounts from the survivors who's minds were not altered by the Clerics. But why would you believe anything we showed you, even if it were the truth? I believe the Skath Clerics have shaped your mind such that you outright even refuse the possibility that they have done so. I want to be able to convince you, to earn your trust, but I do not know how to do so."
Lleufer adds low, "I would like to show you what life was like in the Colonies before the Skath. Would you even be willing to view or read about that if I gave you my word that it is the truth?"

Atticus looks for a moment like he might be slightly annoyed at the implication that he doesn't know if he is himself or not, but he smothers it quickly on the grounds that this sort of conversation is better than no conversation at all. "Do you also have the videos of the atrocities carried out by your people?" It's not an accusatory question, despite the words used, more philosophical. "You are correct though Sergeant. You and I both know that I am in no position to judge the authenticity of anything you show me and as such must start from a position of distrust." He looks even perhaps apologetic, for the situation being what it is, but he doesn't appear to be about to budge, until an idea appears to him. "I would consent to watch, or read, such material, if a rudimentary deal could be struck." His tone is serious, and he eyes Lleufer for a moment to try and gauge his response before he continues, "there are many things I have missed these weeks since you brought me here. Walking, swimming, hunting, conversation among friends." Ale. "Now, I know you are limited, and you have security issues to deal with, but this ship has some form of exercise yard at least I presume? At whatever time of day is convenient, and with as many guards as you deem fit, might I be allowed access?"

The Master-at-Arms crosses his legs at his ankles as he leans against the bulkhead. "What atrocities exactly would that be? Atrocities depend upon one's point of view, but /historically/ I certainly won't deny that humanity has had its share over the millennia. Whether or not there are specific instances in our archives or not, I would have to check. But to what purpose? That is not us, here and now." Ynyr cocks his head and watches Atticus, "We do have such facilities. We run through the decks, or work out in the gym, or swim in the pool. Whether or not I am willing, or can get Command to agree to, extending such privileges to you under MP escort depends on what precisely you are willing to agree to in exchange. I think also, I would require your oath that you would not attempt escape or harm, but I am not certain you /can/ give such an oath and make it binding. Could you? What good to get your agreement to view materials we supply you if you are utterly unwilling to believe anything we might tell you?"

"As I said to your Commander Marcus," Atticus begins carefully, "you've made no secret of the fact that we're in space, and certainly there's nothing I've experienced here that has made me doubt that. I can not fly. I could ride a bike once, long ago, but that’s about my limit. Even if I somehow managed to escape your guards, find a crew, and get into a craft, I'd have no idea if what they were doing in there was real or some huge hoax to string me along." He shakes his head slightly, "there is no way that situation ends with me going home, and I then have to take into account the other duty of a prisoner; to survive." With no belt to hook his thumbs on he has to resort to stuffing his hands in his pockets. "That’s what I'm trying to do at the moment Gunnery Sergeant. Survive."

Lleufer thins his mouth, "To survive? Or go out causing as much damage as you possibly can? If I were free to roam among those I considered my enemy, I would personally be far less concerned about my own life or escape, and thinking about how much damage I could possibly inflict. Take as many of them out with me as I possibly could. Give me a good reason why you would not try the same? My duty is to protect this ship and all those on board her."

"Because I'm a Knight, Sergeant," Atticus replies firmly, standing just a little bit straighter as he does so, "not a barbarian. Besides, I'd hardly be free to roam would I?" Taking his hands out of his pockets he holds them together behind his back. I have been nothing but honest with you, despite the lies at least one of your crew has tried to spin for me. In the end it is simple though, either you accept my word, or you do not. There is little else to consider."

The Marine smiles, "So you would think me a barbarian for desiring to destroy my enemy? Granted, if I was to give /my/ word otherwise, I would stand by my word as surely as you claim that you would stand by yours. Does this mean you would be willing to swear not to attempt escape nor to attempt harm to this ship or anyone on board it if we allow you to be escorted from this brig?" Lleufer gives a soft huff of breath, "Escorted or no, in order to do anything more than walk the corridors, your hands may need to be freed. And in that case, a clever or determined man might be capable of anything. Especially if he gained the advantage of surprise. Knowing you are trained how to fight, I do not discount that you may be dangerous even if your hands are kept bound." The Gunnery Sergeant bares his teeth in a smile, "I certainly am."

"I would," Atticus replies livelily, "if you held yourself up as a man of honour, yet your word could not be trusted. If our situations were revered and I granted you even a limited parole only for you to break it." As for swearing he gives a short, slow nod, "in theory yes, so long as the terms were not egregiously unreasonable." There's another tilted nod of acknowledgement at the level of threat they each pose and then he shrugs, "I could answer you either way, but I wouldn't matter. As I say, it all boils down to if you trust my word. I am prepared to give it, you just have to decide if you'll accept it." Then, slowly, so as not to appear like he's trying to put Lleu under pressure, "take as much time

Whether it might be bad timing or good, Petra's not precisely QUIET in how he steps into the brig area, stopping with the MP to check in and surrender his sidearm. He hesitates stepping in when he sees Lleu is already talking to the resident prisoner, and arches a brow, "My apologies Sergeant. if I'm interrupting something, I can always come back another time. Since the Admiral cannot get down here, I was returning…" The brow stays arched as his attention shifts from Lleu to Atticus and back, giving no sign as to what he might have heard or not.

Lleufer is leaning against the corridor wall outside of Atticus's cell, wearing his MP uniform with his thumbs loosely hooked on his duty belt. The Master-at-Arms has his ankles crossed as he stands relaxed. He answers a question put to him as Petra steps in, "Actually, -I- think I would be willing to trust your word with the qualification that should you break it, I would never trust it again and punish you according. I would hope, even if in vain, that you would honour my own with the same considerations, Sir Knight." The Commander's arrival turns his head and Ynyr shifts his position to stand more at attention, "Sir. You are not interrupting. I was about to put a question to our 'guest' as he claims someone among our crew has tried to spin lies to him." Lleufer looks back to Atticus, "I would ask who that was and what they had said." The Gunnery Sergeant adds as Petra comes to join them, "Also, we were discussing ways I might be able to convince Atticus to consent to viewing materials on how peaceful the Colonies were before the Skath came, to show him that their claims are not entirely true about us. In return, Atticus desires that he might be allowed to go the ship's gym for exercise. With MP escort of course. So, the discussion was revolving around the point of whether or not he would be willing to give his word to me that he would not attempt to escape nor attempt harm to this ship or the people on board, should Command and I deem to agree, Sir." A brow is arched to see how Petra might feel about that arrangement.

If things had perhaps been edging towards tension with Lleu, when Petra appears Atticus clearly relaxes again. Giving the newcomer a nod in greeting he smiles and adds a "Commander Marcus. I have finished the first few if you want them back for safe keeping? If not then might I keep them a while long, to reread at a more leisurely pace?" Books, far more important than all this enemies of each other business. He seems happy enough to answer the question when it's put though. "The Lieutenant, I'm afraid I don't actually know her name. She is the one who claimed my treatment was lenient only due to my father, and that I had been moved after the attack as a result of my behaviour. Words with both of you have counter. Now, technically, I know that it might be her who is truthful, and you the liars, but given how she deports herself in comparison I am as sure as I can be which way the truth lies." It's clear that while he's keeping it civil and conversational, he doesn't actually like Adeliza all that much. Or perhaps just doesn't trust her word. As the conversation at hand is explained though he keeps quiet and turns to Petra, waiting to see what his answer might be.

Petra rumbles softly, nodding once at Lleufer and offering, "I’m willing to back whatever security decision you make, Sergeant. You're aware of the risks involved and you've certainly spent more time dealing with it…" He trails off as Atticus addresses him, linking his hands together behind his back while he tilts his neck a little, and is rewarded with a startlingly loud pop of bone cracking back into place. With a soft grunt, he shakes his head, "If you aren't done with them, I don't mind you hanging on to them for a bit longer. After all, I know where they are…"
There's a small pause as he considers, then ahs, "Lieutenant Wynn. Although I'm curious how you immediately assume at least some of us must be lying to you. This is a large ship. I manage several hundred officers and enlisted people, and that's just on one ship. Is there a chance there could have been a miscommunication? After all, I'm not the one who moved you." With that said, though, he glances back at Lleufer, "You can show him whatever he's willing to watch, but with what he just said, I'm assuming anything he sees that contradicts what he's been telling us, he will just say is a fabrication. I mean, if he's already accusing us of lying to him." And then a brow lifted as he looks back to Atticus, "Sound about right?"

The Gunnery Sergeant listens to Atticus, then Lleufer gives a slow nod, "That doesn't mean that anyone is, or tried to, lie to you. I expect the Lieutenant voiced the truth as she knows it when details may not have been known in full to her. I agree that I might go so far as to say that I hoped solitary would make you more amenable, but I would not agree that I would treat you differently if you were not the son of my former CO. There are regulations, military rules, as to how our prisoners may be treated and I am bound to them legally no matter who you are and whether I like you or not." He shrugs, "Likely the Lieutenant is less aware of those regs than I and not intentionally speaking any untruth."
A nod to Petra, "Understood, Sir." Ynyr pauses a second to trigger his com and speak low into it, "Security Hub, Ynyr. Please bring a folding chair into the brig." There is a confirmation and a moment later the sound of the hatch as an additional MP arrives and sets up a chair for Commander Petra, should he want it. That MP then withdraws.

Atticus gives Petra a small nod, to indicate that he will indeed hold onto the books a while longer, then focuses on the other matters at hand. "While it is possible, what you say, that it is merely an error of communication, but she seemed sure enough in herself that I still think my explanation more likely. She has seemed more.. hostile, then either of you, which is not in and off itself an issue, given, as well all agree, we are enemies. But it adds to the general picture." He's not going to push the point beyond that though, and will leave it to them to deal with, or not, as they see fit. As for the vids, he looks perhaps just a touch sadly to Petra. "As I told the Sergeant earlier, we both know that I have no means to authenticate anything I'm shown, and to say or imply otherwise would be a transparent lie. I can't think of what you could show me that would convince me that what I know to be true is not, but I will watch it, in return for the ability to stretch. Is it the be all and end all? No, and we'd be fools to try and think of it as such, but we both get something we want out of it, and I am content with that."

Petra glances back at the chair, but for the moment, doesn't move to take it. Instead, he listens to both men and nods slightly at their words, pursing his lips, "The problem is, of course, that there's no longer any way to independently verify what you say, or what we say. It’s all in the past. We have pictures and movies, you have scattered memories and what people have told you has happened, and because we're arguing over a past that no longer exists, I think that's as far as anyone is going to get. The Skath did a very good job of scouring any possible sign of technology off of the colonies, so there's nothing left behind that would prove we even HAD that technology, much less that it came from a society that was not living in enslavement as you claim. In fact, you're saying I and people like me were the enslavers. Right?" He rolls a shoulder and glances back at Lleufer, "Your idea sounds fine with me. MP escort, with the understanding that privileges will be revoked and no returned if they are taken advantage of. If anyone questions it, just say you ran it past me and I'll clear it."

Atticus gets a nod from Lleufer, "Fair enough." To both parts. There is a sideways glance to Petra. Ynyr may perhaps hope that with some exposure to crew and the ship, as well as the viewing materials, that in time they might be able to win Atticus over. A vain hope maybe. Another nod is given to Petra, "Thank you, Sir." Lleufer now stands at parade rest with his hands lightly clasped behind his back. His usual position when in the company of his superior officers of high rank. "If you desire to speak with Mr. Ommanney, I can depart if you'd like, Commander."

Atticus nods his agreement with the generally gist of what Petra is saying, then ponders for a moment before replying, "I would probably use the term oppression, rather than enslavement, but as a generali… " he trails off as he figures out that that wasn't actually a question that he was expected to answer. Looking a little uncertain as to how to proceed next, he latches onto the topic change with both hands. "I understand and accept those restrictions." Then, as it looks like Lleu might be about to leave he checks, "does that include the razor you mentioned earlier as well?"

Petra mms softly, "There's no need to go if you had intended to remain for a while, but I won't keep you from your duties either if you have things you need to attend to. I just came down since the Admiral has her hands full and for, at least the evening, I'm relatively off duty." There's even a faint smile to that as the chair IS finally reached for, and turned around so he can sit down backwards on it, facing Atticus' space, "I thought I would check to see if there is anything you wanted to ask or talk about, as this might be the one place almost no one on this barge is going to come looking for me."

Lleufer gives Atticus a nod, "Yes, as soon as your visitors have departed I'll have an MP bring in the electric razor, and the depilatory cream, and assist you with getting yourself cleaned up." The battery operated razor won't be left with Atticus but the cream will be. The Master-at-Arms smiles at Petra, "If either of you play chess, or desire to play cards, I could have things set up easily for safe interaction." Ynyr looks to see what reaction Atticus might have to that offer. Then hears a small beeping. Lleu checks his chrono, "Actually, my duty shift is ending and I'm expected elsewhere. But I'll make certain my MP's can set things up anytime you two might care to pass the time in here, Sir."

Atticus nods once to Lleu in thanks, subconsciously reaching one hand up to scratch at his chin again. "I could play?" he replies, looking to Petra to see if he is interested or not, "or we could talk about the books? I suspect they are as safe a topic as any for conversation." Politics and religion being right out in that regard, given the circumstances. As the Master at Arms turns to move, he pads the last two foot or so towards the bars, given Petra is at a safe distance then turns his back to the sidewall of the cell and sits down. "One thing Commander Marcus, before he or his guards return." There's a furtive glance towards the MPs, then back to Petra. "How does one use an electric razor?"

Petra chuckles softly, "I can play. Whether or not I am any sort of a CHALLENGE is another matter entirely. But sure." He offers a small bow of his head in respect to the Master at Arms when he turns to go, but a brow goes up when Atticus asks about an electric razor. A genuine smile spreads across his face for a moment, before clearing his throat, "It’s one of those things where, one you've used one, you're going to wonder how in Hades you ever got along without one." Reaching up to run a hand over his scarred scalp, he offers, "I could never use a blade on this anymore, cut myself too easily. Electric is the way to go. Has little tiny blades that whirl at high speed under a metal foil. It’s…I'll just have to show you sometime." With that said, he smirks and lets the thought trail off.

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