PWD #40: Views and Hot Sauce
Views and Hot Sauce
Summary: Random night on the Obs Deck. Keller brought food.
Date: 27/11/2012 (OOC Date)
Related Logs: Nope!
Bennett Iphigenia Keller Nora North 
Observation Deck — Deck 3 — Battlestar Orion
The Obs Deck is one of the more quiet areas on the Orion where people can come to get away from the hustle and bustle that goes with of the rest of duty on the ship. The front of the room is a very large armored glass window to allow a dominating view of whatever is out ahead of the battlestar. Seats rise up at even levels, plush chairs and couches provided for the crew to relax in. During Condition One an armored plate is lowered down to cover the view and prevent the room from becoming a hazard and seal tight.
November 27, 2004 (PWD #40)

The Obs Deck is quieter than it can be when the ship is on-mission. With better distractions on Virgon and many crew off-loading and not yet /quite/ replaced. So Nora has a prime spot by the window. Presently she's using it to smoke a cigarette, and enjoy the view. Such as it is.

Believe it or not, Dr. Catarina North is calling it a quiet night. Dressed in a muted purple tee and comfortable black sweatpants, the woman heads into the observation deck with her Marine guard in tow, angling not for the window but for the hot water machine nearby.

With the careful, measured steps and deliberate glances around the area of someone clearly being a) cautious or b) entering an unfamiliar space the booted feet of one tall and broad-shouldered serviceman carry their owner inside. Keller has a duffel bag slung over his arm as he holds it aloft, the coat of his duty greens jacket hanging open as he blinks towards the observation deck window and taking a good long look outside.

Nora is in off-duties, for her part, but it's still very much military gear. It's quiet enough that the entry of another person makes her look up and over. She eyes the woman in civilian threads. She eyes her shoes, first and foremost. She's in stocking feet a the moment herself, though a pair of military-issue white ones are on the floor by the chair she's curled up on. White clog-like things of soft plastic that are fashion-backward, but look highly comfortable if you're up and around all day. "Not much of a view now," she comments to North, by way of 'hello.' Keller's entrance also draws a look from her.

"Ow." Catarina winces as a blast of steam shoots out of the machine, causing her to lose her grip on her paper cup — which Private Joe promptly picks up before the tea bag inside can fall to the floor. "Thanks," she mutters, voice hoarse. And to Nora, while she brews some more tea: "Still looks pretty impressive to me."

Thick, dark eyebrows arch a bit on Keller's face as the man turns slightly from the vista outside towards the woman glancing at him. "Suppose it's all a matter of perspective." He speaks slowly, in a voice that practically rumbles from his gut. "I mean, 'supose we could all be looking at a hollowed-out crater out a window on a base in the middle of nowhere." Not shy about practically interjecting himself into a conversation, is he? "Guess this is a pretty expensive view from where I'm sitting." He shuffles the duffel bag to one side as he continues walking towards the chairs - it's got a few patches sewn on it, indicating your usual airboy shit.

Nora's slim brows arch at interloping Keller. But she doesn't really object. If anything, his random interjection draws a faint, dry smile from her. "Don't fret, Lieutenant. There are many a lovely hollowed-out crater awaiting us when we get underway. But, aye. It pays better than most of these jaunts." She doesn't look overly sympathetic about North's wincing at the tea, but she does at least not laugh. "Reminds me, I should get myself to a mall while we're within spitting distance of a planet. Though gods know why. Not like there are many spots to go out on the town where we're headed."

Catarina chuckles under her breath, letting the warming smell of chamomile waft into her nostrils. "Speaking of craters, that's what you should do to the malls down there. Nine million chain stores all selling the same red scarves." As she talks, she draws up a cup of coffee for Private Joe. It's the least she can do. "Hey, anybody want something from this?" With a grin: "I'm buying."

"That's the Gods' own truth —" Keller begins in Nora's direction, visibly trailing off, not actually sounding like he finishes the statement. "Someone on the transport bird was saying something about headin' to Picon in a couple months but pretty much everything else he said gave me the idea that he didn't have the /first clue/ what he was talking about. So we might be S.O.L. either way." Cheery. His thin smirk is delivered to her as he keeps walking and then turns towards Catarina.

"Nah. I'm good. Don't know if I trust that thing." He dumps off the duffel bag in the nearest open seat on the end and then dumps his rear end into the chair next to it, fumbling with the zipper with a furtive look.

Nora shakes her head at North. "Thanks. But there's communal tea back in Medical that I try to swipe from. I try to see that there are packets of the not-terrible stuff laying around if you know where to look." To Keller, she shakes her head. "First I saw of Picon was a week's leave when we hit this sector again. Back now, though, and I don't expect to see it for another eighteen months. It's not so bad once you kind of get yourself in the headspace of being there. Better than some holes the Navy can stick you in." Said with that same faint smile, so it takes any real bitterness out of the complaint.

Catarina shrugs, retrieving her drink and following Keller to the couches. She sets her drink down the ground before flopping bonelessly into well-worn cushions, her hair fanning out behind her head and around her shoulders. "Yeah. Plus, the hunting down there's not bad either," she offers to nobody in particular. "Fresh deer is way better than your ready-made meals. So you'll eat well, at least."

Bennett arrives from the Fore Corridor.

"/Communal/, eh?" Keller mutters in a low voice as he fumbles with the zipper and starts rummaging through the duffel bag, pulling out a brown paper sack. "Been to Picon a couple times. It's pretty there, I suppose. Same way it's pretty everywhere. Almost everywhere." He continues to mumble to himself as he starts pulling open the bag. "Deer lasagna. Oh, now you're talking." He exclaims.

The bag pops open to reveal a large, dense roll and a plain plastic squeeze bottle with a hand-written tape label on the side, indicating 'SPECIAL STUFF' in red pen. He looks from one woman to the other. "Dunno if this goes with tea, but…Don't suppose you're hungry."

"My kid lives there. So does the ex. Gives me conflicted feelings about the planet," Nora says wryly. "But Queenstown's gorgeous this time of year, as the orbit goes there." She takes a little puff on her cigarette. And eyes Keller's 'SPECIAL STUFF' bottle. "Just how special is your stuff, L-T? I'm supposed to go back on in a half an hour. And they kind of frown on us getting too special'd up while on duty in the medical bay." She tilts her head at North. "You hunt? Never had a talent for it. I did go fishing a couple of times. Didn't catch anything, but maybe I'll work up to that."

Bennett's head appears first in the entryway, swivels about in a faintly birdlike fashion, and is followed by the rest of the fatigues-clad officer. She has what appears to be paperwork under one arm, and a cigarette tucked between two fingers. In no apparent rush to get wherever it is she's going, she undertakes a slow meander toward the broad window that occupies the front of the deck.

"Only for science," replies Catarina with a laugh. "The native herbivores want nothing more than to eat the shit out of our outdoor crop fields. We cull the herd. Within acceptable limits, of course. Minimal intrusion is the name of the game." As she speaks, Catarina eyes the man's bag dubiously, nose wrinkling. It looks terrible — which means, of course, that she's duty-bound to try some. "Sure, I'll bite." Then, back to Nora: "Wait, seriously? I know this redheaded doc who probably gets sauced before every op."

As Nora narrates a bit about her family, his large eyes flicker upwards and soften a little. "Oh yeah? Mine — well, little guy and ex are back on Virgon. Kind of convenient when I was back on Radix. Alex will be 4 next year, the little guy." The tall man suddenly cracks a big smile. "Anyway, this stuff isn't the 'violates regs' or the 'redhead doc' kind of special if that's what you're worried about. Courtesy of Specialist Mapour from the Battlestar Erinys. I don't want to /tell/ you how hard it is to find a Saggie cook on a Battlestar." He holds the bottle aloft and sets it on the chair arm. "It's got kind of a kick, though." And with that, he proceeds to tear off a piece of the roll and pulls out a crumpled paper towel as a napkin.

He sets out another with the large remainder of the roll and gestures to it to the women. "Dig in. The way they do it just involves dousing the top in the sauce." And with that, he starts dousing his own fragment in a reddish-brown sauce that radiates a faint hint of pepper and saffron-like spice.

Bennett sinks into a chair not too far from Catarina and Keller, and eases the smoke between her lips. The folder with the paperwork is flipped open; it may look familiar as some of the standard stuff most of the crew's had to fill out upon coming aboard. Probably a fresh transfer, then. Occasionally her blue eyes shift toward the trio conversing nearby, though mostly it's Keller's Special Stuff that has her attention.

Nora's brows arch at North's reference to 'the redheaded doc.' But all she does is chuckle low and say, "Heh. I operate entirely sober, I promise. Unless you count the caffeine in my black tea. Can't function without the stuff." She grins broad when Keller mentions his little guy. "How old's he? My Juli just turned ten. I missed her birthday, but I managed to get in some facetime with her while we were back in the colonies." Perhaps only because she's curious about the sauce she says to North, "Maybe I will take a coffee." Another entrant makes her look that way, and she offers Bennett a general 'Hey' smile-and-nod. "I wonder if we've filled up with new blood yet. More coming every day."

Catarina looks very, very comfortable right now. Looks like you'll have to get that coffee yourself, Nora. Besides, the doctor's attention is currently held by Keller's special concoction, the smell from which has already made her eyes water and her nostrils sting. That's as good an excuse as any to cover a hunk of bread with as much of it as it can hold. While the others talk about children, she will eat. "It's good," she mumbles, mouth full.

"Evening," Bennett offers Nora's way, amiably enough. A quick smile before she lights up and takes a short puff on her smoke. A cheap brand, nothing fancy. Though, speaking of which, she steals another glance toward Keller's bottle. Sniff. Sniff sniff.

"It /is/, isn't it?" comes Keller's immediate reply to Catarina. "I suppose I should be hoarding this more but I'm sure someone in the Mess on this beast has some class. I have faith." He cracks a sly grin as he continues. "I'm sure we'll be in good hands." To Nora now. "Nah, he'll be four next year. Sounds like yours has a few years on him. I pop in when I can - right now his mom's going to have to do the heavy lifting. Like she always does." A pointed sigh there as he applies the sauce to the bread and then pops some in his mouth.

With his other hand he reaches into the duffel bag and glances over at Bennett with a tilt of his head. "You know — I see you over there. There's some of this with your name on it too if you want it —" he pauses a moment, blinking at her pins. "Sir." Well, he made the effort.

Nora eyes the roll, and the sauce, and immobile North. "Water, maybe. Save me part of a roll. Been years since I've had good Saggie chow." She even puts out her cigarette in preparation for whatever it is she's about to enjoy. That's anticipation for you. She makes her way over to the cooler, getting herself a styrofoam cup of said water. It's not far, so she asks Bennett, "Where you coming from? The lieutenant here…" Head-gesture to Keller. "…was last on the…Erinys, you said? I've been here for a year and change, myself. Good crew. Last batch was, at least, and a decent number of them are sticking around. Quiet most days, but that's not something to complain about."

Bennett's smile broadens into an almost cheeky grin. "I'm.. not on duty," she tells Keller. "It's just Bennett. Or Butch, if you prefer." Hey, it could be she likes lipstick lesbians. Or, more likely, it's her callsign. "But no, thank you. I'm more interested in finding out what's in it, if you're willing to tell?" Another pull from her smoke, and she eases back into her chair, gaze settling on the roving Nora. "The.." Hesitation. "Tauron."

Catarina inhales the rest of her impromptu meal and wipes her hands clean on the hem of her dark purple tee. Her eyes are a tad bit puffy — from the sauce, no doubt — but that might be because her sauce-to-bread ratio was something along the order of 2:1. "Yeah, I've got no complaints," she says at length, her lilting alto a tad bit hoarse. And then, her usual grin returning: "Folks here are so nice that they'll even break bread with strangers. Which reminds me: I'm Dr. Catarina North. I shoot things."

"Milk's probably a better call if there's some around." Keller says in a deep, sage affectation towards Nora. "But I'm sure you've been down this road before, yeah? Anyway I'm fresh off a Raptor from the Erinys. Odin-class, not a Merc, but she's no slouch in the firepower department. Good ship. I'm sure the Orion will live up to her example though." He finishes this assessment good-naturedly and takes another bite, chewing and swallowing before responding.

"Well, you know what Stavros said. 'All are equal at the dining table.' Or something like that, it doesn't translate that well." He says towards Bennett. "As far as the ingredients, that's the thing, right? Usually four main spices in the dish as well as a particularly hot brand of pepper that only matures when it turns red. But most of those poor sods on Caprica eat it when it's green. Their loss, really." He continues. "I'm not sure if this is made quite to spec, Mapour was a bit of a cheat with traditional recipes, or so he said. Anyway, I'm Ambrosius. Ambrosius Keller, just rolled into VAQ-121. But most of the people who've had the /pleasure/ of dealing with me call me Sandwich." Maybe he likes his lunches. It certainly /seems/ like it.

To Catarina now. "Shooting doctor? Hope you're not the kind with a big damn needle." He says, with obviously feigned dread. "Allright there? You can probably cut that with some half-and-half." He looks a little sweaty from the sauce but not too bad.

Nora makes an "Mmm" sound when Bennett mentions Tauron. And does not ask anymore questions. "My posting before this was on an assault lander called the Edwards Hill posted to Tauron sector space. I was definitely due for a change." Water acquired, back she goes. To get her roll from Keller. She arches her brows at him as she reaches for it. If he's a gentleman, maybe he'll sauce it for her. As for introductions, "Doctor Nora Phareem. The medical kind, unlike Doctor North. Captain Phareem, if you want to get purely Navy about it, but the rank's never been good for much except bossing around orderlies."

Bennett raises a brow slightly at the juxtaposition of 'doctor' and 'shooting things'; Catarina is given a sidelong, briefly assessing glance before, "I'm going to guess not a people doctor.. doctor?" She flicks some ash off her cigarette with her thumb, accidentally dusts her paperwork in the process, and takes a few swipes at it with her knuckles. Meanwhile, to Keller, "I suppose we're to be squadmates, then. I'm Bennett St. Clair, also with the Gentleman Ghosts. Captain." The last is almost as an afterthought, since, well, the pins sort of speak for themselves.

"Animals, mostly, these days." Catarina chuckles. "Unless you'd like to volunteer for dissection, you're safe from me. I'm a civilian, actually, in charge of field ops for our xenobio team. Which means you Raptor pilots will probably spend at least some of your time shuttling around me and a few Marines while we tranq up a few hundred elk for science." With a grunt, the scientist leans over the side of her couch to retrieve her tea, taking long gulps from the chamomile in an attempt to dull the burn. "It's not the worst detail in the world. Usually we nab a few bunnies on the way. Barbecue and beer at the end of a shift while the suns go down?" North sighs a content little sigh. "Nothing better."

Keller continues reclining a little in his chair as he tears through his piece of bread slowly. "Sirs." He offers, as a formality if nothing else, waggling an eyebrow. "Really now? Yeah, I'm an ECO - volunteered for this assignment, apparently the Old Man has a soft spot for anyone who's Predator-qualified which means I lucked out twice over."

"Mmm. Elk. Yeah. Problem with cooking elk is that you need to add so much fat that you end up eating the equivalent of a whole other animal before you're done. Well, if you're doing it /right/ at least. Anyway, doc - barbecue and beer. You're speaking my language. I haven't had a /real/ barbecue since I went back with my dad on his last trip back home to Aquaria. Food's good but that place is a bit much. All that 'WE'RE YOUR FRIENDS' and 'we share everything' shit is fine but then they find out what you do for a living and all get tongue-tied. Like you've got two heads."

End of her day, not that her duties really ever end. Gen is in her grey and green, a few books tucked under her arm as she comes onto the obs deck.

"I can take it," Nora says to Keller, taking her sauce-dabbed roll. She stuffs the whole thing in her mouth. It's a small piece, but she seems to consider full exposure the best way to deal with something like this. It makes her eyes widen, but that seems to be a generally pleased response to the whole thing. "Whew!" she says once she's swallowed. She gives it a bit before she downs any water. Letting that settle. The entering chaplain gets a smile and greeting of "Sister. What's the good word?"

Bennett smiles slightly, eyes darting between Catarina and Nora. She takes another pull from the stub of her cigarette, then mashes it out against the metal endplate on her chair's arm. "Well, this paperwork isn't going to do itself. It's been good to meet you all; I'm sure I'll see you in barracks, Ambrosius." She stands smoothly, folder gathered up under one arm, and departs with a tip of her fingers in casual 'salute'.

"You make the sauce, I'll skin the animals." Thus is the pact sealed. "They stopped letting me spice the meat after I accidentally dumped half a thing of Scorpian spice mix into the marinade. Hey, Bennett, nice to meet you. Hope to see you out." Catarina waves in the pilot's direction, one that doubles as greeting to the chaplain. And then she, too, is pushing herself out of the couch with some reluctance. "I probably should head back to quarters, too. Something I have to take care of. But it was nice meeting you all." No salute from her — just a quiet thunk of an empty paper cup into a nearby bin.

"Syzygy." Gen replies to Nora brightly. "Brilliant word, isn't it?" Taking a seat, she curls into it with her knees to her chest as she sets her books to the side. "Evening." she calls out to those departing.

"I can't make anything anywhere /near/ as good as this." Keller's admission comes dryly. "But I can try." He tosses a half-wave, half-salute in the departing Catarina's direction as he looks over his shoulder towards the new arrival, nodding his head slightly. And then back to Bennett. "I'm sure we'll be sick of each other soon enough — sir. Look forward to flying with you, though."

"Syzygy, eh?"

Bennett leaves, heading toward the Fore Corridor [FC].

"The perfect alignment of planets." Iphigenia affirms, "And just as fun to spell as it is to say." she declares with a smile.

"Oh, damn, I'm going to cry," Nora says. Laughing while she's saying it, so she's generally positive toward burning her taste buds. "Haven't had something like this since…med school, I guess. And it's still not quite the same. Hard to find genuine Sag food off-world. Syzygy?" She repeats the word, kind of tasting it on what remains of her tongue. "That'd be a hell of a one to play in a Words War game. What brought it up?"

"I know!" Keller explains, a slightly earnest edge to his deep voice. "That Specialist warmed up when I told him my wife was from Saggitaron. Of course, I fed him a line to gloss over the fact that Mel hated to cook. Which isn't a big deal, really. It was a good hustle." Finishing the last bits of his roll, he turns back to the Sister and nods a little. "A portent, no?"

"You did, actually. You asked me what the good word was, and that was the favorite of the ones I was considering." She then mmms to Keller and considers thoughtfully, "Well, we can certainly hope so."

"So I did." Nora chuckles as she wipes her eyes. Then sips her water. It doesn't help that much, but it's something. She chuckles at Keller. "My ex didn't cook. Neither did I, but when you marry Navy it's less of an issue. That wasn't one of our bigger issues, at least. Portent?" She passes a look between the two of them. "You think? You figure it refers to Virgon, or that rock we're all about to ship back to?"

"Heh - heh heh heh heh heh. I think it was more in my case the long absences and incompatible lifestyles. To be perfectly honest, this whole thing was an accident, but I've been flying long enough that I can't imagine doing anything else." Keller explains with a lazy wave of his hand.

"Anyhow, good words don't ever go out of style." He nods to Gen as he continues to pack up his duffel bag.

"I think you may be reading into it more than is actually there. Afer all, I'm a priestess, not an oracle." She looks over at Keller. "I'm Lieutenant Arden, by the way - one of the chaplains, if it weren't obvious. Welcome aboard Orion, and do let me know if I can be of assistance." Her tone is warm, despite the clipped, received pronunciation of Virgon aristocracy.

Nora's own accent tends toward generic Libran, enjoyment of Sagittaron food aside. Keller's reply draws a chuckle. "Mostly that, yes. And a few other things, but mostly that. I guess it comes with the territory." She can't help but sound a little regretful, but it's the long resigned, wry sort of regret. She settles back in her chair when Keller begins packing his duffel bag. And reaches for her shoes. She's been in stocking feet, but she seems to feel it time put on her sensible white tennies. "How's business these days, Sister? Such as your business is."

Keller's accent isn't anything really pronounced or distinctive. It's as blended and — well, /multicultural/ as an accent can get. Those guys on the news? That's him. "Life is a collection of regrets. Or so they say." The tall man shrugs as he ambles to his feet, slipping his duffel bag on his shoulder as he zips it up, eyeing Gen skeptically. "Well - I wouldn't want to get branded a /heretic/ over this but I feel like the Gods deign to talk to people whether they're oracles or not. It'd be disrespectful to assume less of them. They're Gods, after all. An' anyway, Lieutenant Keller. Ghosts Squadron, ECO. They call me 'Sandwich' if that helps." He cracks a faint grin. "Just got here from the Battlestar Erinys. I have to run but — before I do - you sound straight out of Boskirk, if I'm not mistaken?"

Iphigenia chuckles. "The usual spectrum. There's the faithful in their various degrees, the ones who feel the need to make excuses about their lack of faith, the defiantly anti-religious, and the ones that treat me as if I'm infectious." Her grin turns wry. "Those last are generally the most entertaining." To Keller, "My family has a residence some distance outside of Boskirk, but essentially, yes." She then flashes a smile at Keller. "I think it has little to do with what the Gods deign to do than my poor mortal self assuming divine inspiration where I haven't the right. Lovely to meet you, Sandwich."

"Who's 'they'?" Nora queries Keller. Not that it's really challenging. "Not that it's not true." To Iphigenia, she offers a half-sympathetic, half-wry smile. "Slightly better than a doctor. At least some people aboard ship occasionally want to see you. And you aren't actually disease-ridden, silliness aside. Any ideas on where a girl should go shopping?" That last, randomly segued, probably in search of expertise on finer Virgon boutiques. Or at least better malls.

"Yeah, I heard it, definitely." Keller states. "I went to UV Boskirk until ROTC led to — well, you know how it is. Grew up outside of there part of the time too. My mom's moontrash, though, but that's a story better left imagined." The man throws back his head and lets out a dry snicker. "As far as /they/ go, well, that's another story. I'll probably get a better name here. If you'll both excuse me." He ends this statement in a wry grin as he starts to plod over towards the hatch and parts unknown. "Be seein' you."

"Depends on what you're looking for, really." A gentle smile is offered to Keller as a goodbye; Gen would never ever use the word moon trash. She focuses on the questions about fashion. "There's one street in Boskirk that's essentially a street fair that's got marvelous finds if you'd like something a bit bohemian or retro; if you want something more pricey or designer, the closer you get to the center of the city, the more haute the fashion houses become."

"Be seeing you, Lieutenant," Nora offers to Keller as he goes. She considers the options the chaplain gives her. "I've probably only got time for one. Maybe I'll hit the center city. Just to rubberneck, if nothing else. Not like there are many places to wear designer threads, but it's fun to browse sometimes. And maybe put something totally impractical in your footlocker afterwards."

"I find it's nice to have something nice and slinky for events like Colonial Day that you can pop out of your closet and drop a lot of jaws." notes Iphigenia slyly. But do let me know if you find something."

Nora chuckles. "That, too." She considers the pack of cigarettes in her pocket but, after some internal debate, doesn't pluck out another. "Anyway. I should get in a shower before I'm due in Sickbay again. Keep fighting the good fight, Chaplain. Such as it is."

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