MD #226: Well, That Went Well
Well, That Went Well
Summary: Lleufer and Atticus discuss future options, then Emily arrives an careless words lead to a very public row.
Date: 20/11/2017
Related Logs: None specifically
Atticus Lleufer Emily 
Observation Deck - Deck 3 - Battlestar Orion
The Obs Deck is one of the more quiet areas on the ship where people can come to get away from the hustle and bustle that goes with the rest of service in the fleet. 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 sealing it tight.

It's late shift on Orion and the Obs Deck is reasonably busy with those on daywork enjoying the view, socialising, or just chilling on a settee. There's one area that’s quieter than the others though, off to the side in the corner, and the comparative emptiness might have something to do with the two clearly on-duty MPs stood there, next to a comfy chair occupied by a young man in fleet issue sweats. Currently Atticus has his head down over one of Petra's hardcopy books, while another one lies open in his lap. An odd arrangement at first sight, but then his tablet beeps next to him on the chair arm and he picks it up, turns the page of the second book, takes a picture, taps a few commands, then sets the tablet down again to continue his reading. From the expressions on the faces of the MPS, this has been going on for a while.

Lleufer has just gotten off duty himself and hit the Mess Hall. Finished with his evening meal, the Gunny stops by the Observation Deck because he'd inquired and been informed that Atticus could be found there. Sure enough the two MP's are spotted. Ynyr gives them a nod and settles himself into the closest chair at a comfortable conversational distance. Atticus probably hasn't seen Lleu off duty before, in his tanks with his arms bared. Scars mar his flesh as well as a couple of tats on each upper arm. Bronze coloured hex tags lay against his chest. "Hey there. Mind a visitor? I hope you are starting to regain your balance a little bit."

Atticus hasn't tried the Mess yet, too big, too noisy, too many people with access to knives who might take against him. He's paying attention to the books to notice the arrival of the MaA but once Lleu speaks he glances up and gives a small nod. "Good evening," he greets, setting the book he's reading down on the arm of the chair not currently occupied by the tablet. "There's been no more Ghosts, if that's what you mean," he replies conversationally, "right now I'm just digitising some of Marcus' books for him. The ones the library doesn't have."

The Gunny gives Atticus a nod, "They, the ghosts, don't show themselves often. I think it takes a great of effort on their part to … manifest. Usually they only show themselves when we are in great danger to try to warn us, to alert us to something upcoming, or some other means to aid us. Like … some of them sheltered my youngest son. Him and a bunch of other children on Piraeus, when the Skath came." Lleufer reaches up to indicate the shape of his ears, "Because you know, children like mine especially wouldn't have survived." He lowers his hand, his baritone pitched low so not to carry. "I am beyond grateful to get one of my sons back alive." After a second or two he adds, "Good of you to do that for Commander Petra and the crew."

There are distinct hints of relief at the news that more hauntings are unlikely, it's a hard thing to take in on its own, let alone when there's a chance of numerous dead not liking him. Nodding his understanding his expression turns to guilt when Lleu points to his ears and he starts a reply of, "they wouldn't have lasted long, unless someone hid them." Fortunately for him he's then saved by the tablet beeping again and he gets to look away and scan in the next page to be processed. He doesn't exactly rush, giving himself time to put distance between the previous conversation strand and the next, but ones the tablet is working away to itself again he looks back to Lleufer and shrugs once, "It's something to do. Might not seem much, but books are precious, and should be preserved. If there are others that need scanning but people don't have the time, I can do those too."

"Books are precious. We have lost so much to the Cylon, and then to the Skath all over again." Ynyr sighs, comfortable in the chair. He watches Atticus briefly, then turns his head to look at the starscape view. "But perhaps contact and trade with the Mother faction will allow us access to more books. Might be we can put out the word that we seek digital formats." Lleufer looks back, "We don't have much room on board the ship for physical copies and they'd be cheaper to trade for."

Atticus keeps looking at Lleufer as the marine looks out at the starts, then, once he looks back asks, "what is Mother? I've heard it mentioned, and a man called Errol? But that’s about the extent of what I know." There's a nod of agreement to the ease of digital formats over physical, but then he notes, "you have a planet called Pitchfork, or so I'm told. Physical copies might be more use there? I got the impression conditions are pretty basic for now, so an actual book would mean no power was needed to read."

"Mother is a huge ship and a trading conglomerate of refugees from the Skath. I am only telling you this because I feel you are much less threat than you were before, and that you will not be returning to the Skath to inform them. We can across them ourselves recently while on a salvage mission." Lleu gives a slight nod, "Pitchfork is the habitable world we found with the help of Arpay information. It was previously inhabited but no longer, until we moved our own refugees there. People we removed from Piraeus, like my youngest son. Only Llewellyn opted to stay on board as he's old enough now to join the Corps. I believe he's in training with your Lady Emily in the same squad." Lleu rubs the stubble along his jaw and shifts a leg to lay over his knee as he slouches a little in the big chair. "Physical copies are easier for people to access, yes. But we can print out and bind physical copies from digital materials easily enough. Set it up to be done on planet once they are able to make their own paper. Power's not a problem between solar energy and the river that's nearby."

Atticus considers the information imparted for a moment then nods slowly, "it's good that it's not just Orion out there," he notes, then scans another page and sets it processing. "And if they have new books then all the better." And other things of course, but since the topic is on books he keeps it there rather than side-tracking off. "Marcus, Commander Petra," he's not sure which form of address he should be using, so opts for both, "said I could go to Pitchfork if I wanted a quiet life, to farm and such but that if I wanted to know more about Mother then he'd leave it for Captain Errol and his people to explain." There's a nod to the comment about printing out new copies of books, but he counters with, "true, but there's no substitute for that old book smell, the feel of a well-worn page, the marginalia, they carry their own history in a way a brand new run just can't. Not for years."

Lleufer smiles, "Old books are nice, but they are getting hard to find. Right now, Pitchfork doesn't exactly have environmentally friendly places to keep them out of humidity and weather. Most of those people are still living out of tents until they can fabricate better housing." A nod to what Atticus says as his options, "There's also need for exploration of Pitchfork. We still know very little about it or the people who dwelled there before our arrival. They haven't been gone long either. Perishables like clothing was left behind, as well as their cities. Who knows what else is there? Libraries, seed banks, manufacturing facilities, transportation, mines, possibly a great wealth of resources. Resources we and our colonists badly need." The Gunnery Sergeant seated in a big comfy chair smiles, "Or, once your POW status is cleared, you could stay here and go into training. We are always in need of Marines, and even more so, pilots. Though it can take a good long while to get through a pilot's training in full."

Given the hour, its hard to understand why Emily is out of her rack. She should be getting ready for bed very soon. But rather than be doing that, she comes down here? The girl is in a black fitted women's shirt that says 'I shoot like a girl… Better than you!' and under it a set of white long underwear that goes to her wrists. The jeans she's wearing fit well, too, and there's a pink beanie with black stitching on her head. Seems trading for a dress went well. Atticus might barely recognize her, if at all. She wanders down towards the window, still taken in with the view, when those eyes notice the two men speaking. Moving that direction, she approaches slowly, fingers barely lifting to a wave. No desire to start a fight.

"My cell is an environmentally friendly place to keep them out of humidity and weather," Atticus notes deadpan, "or the haunted one." Ghosts likely don't bother books quite so much as they do PoWs. Books eat less too, and don't require changes in clothing or linen. Maybe PoWs should be replaced by books… "A whole planet who's people disappeared?" he asks, looking quizzically to Lleufer, "are you sure it's safe for the settlers?" He gives another nod at the comment about training and notes, "I've been told that once the ground feels solid again then Marcus, or someone he can spare, will sit with me and go through the options. See what I can do, or what training I'd need if there's something particular I want to but don't have the skills for." He leaves out the suggestion of MPs for now, given Emily appears in his peripheral vision. It's been about a week since he's seen her, and the new clothes are a bit of a shock, but he holds a hand up to return her greeting.

"It seems safe enough for now, but it does worry me. It's not like we have very many options as to where we could put our people. They certainly wouldn't be safe with the Skath. We couldn't keep them and their livestock on board this and our other ships. Our Fleet is much too small for their needs." Lleu pauses to look over Emily as she arrives and he lifts a brow, "Wearing a hat indoors, Recruit?" Yep, she's going to get flak for that whether she's off duty or not! This is a military ship. Ynyr grins a little, "I see Knox hasn't broken you into pieces yet. Sore?"

Emily only catches a little bit of what's being said, approaching slowly. That small smile is held for Atticus, her fondness evident. Despite looking like she fell out of a skateboarding video, she clasps her hands in front of her and moves more like the royal. "Sir Atticus, itis a relief to see you away from the brig and gym. This bodes well. I hope all is well with you." Her eyes linger on him and he can probably see what Kelsey was talking about there. Eyes then divert to Lleufer and she dips her head to him. "Aye Gunnery Sergeant. I'm in civilian attire. I admit the whole ship is indoors so I do not understand how some marines do and do not figure out when it is okay to wear headcoverings, otherwise." Its hard to picture her as the barking Marine Recruit at the moment. Seems she hasn't lost who she really is, completely. "Sore, but not as much as I had been at first. I am getting stronger and faster. I wish to try heavier weapons. And Sergeant Palermo said she is going to show me a steel beast called an LAV."

Atticus seems to share Lleufer's concerns, from what little he has just been told anyway, but then there are others' whose actual problem it is so he doesn't dwell on it beyond offering the MaA a single nod in understanding and agreement. He doesn't flinch at Emily's use of his title, but he does look away briefly and shake his head. "I know you said not to, but I'm renouncing the knighthood," he says to her, "once it's been worked out exactly how the Admiral would prefer it done." It's not like there's a SOP for it on record. There's a beep from his tablet as another section of processing is complete so he flips the page on the book in his lap and takes a picture for the software to get to work on once more. "I am as well as can be I expect, but there has been a lot to take in these past few days, the missing twenty years, ghosts…"

Lleufer smiles at Emily, "We usually do not salute indoors nor wear covers on board. But there are exceptions which you'll learn. Covers are most suitable when we are out of doors and need protection from the elements, ticks, sun." His arms bared, Ynyr has a booted foot laid over one knee as he relaxes. The star field is brilliant in the huge bay observation window. Every once in a while spice is added by the movements of Vipers or a Raptor flying CAP, or another ship in their small fleet within view, but there is no planet in close proximity to inspire awe.

<FS3> Emily rolls Etiquette: Failure.

Emily stares at Atticus. Any good humour on her face fades away and there's a suddenly stricken look. With that sort of emotional welling, a few weeks ago she might have careened right towards tears but not today. Perhaps not anymore. Sullen, unfocused eyes drift away from him. The mention of ghosts doesn't even seem to interest her. Apparently renouncing his position hit her like a brick wall because she doesn't even seem to hear Lleufer. Or maybe she does. The hat is tugged off as she turns and walks off, leaving the two to their conversation.

OK, clearly he /missed/ something there between Atticus and Emily. Lleufer eyes her, then looks back to the other man with a lifted brow.

Atticus lets the two marines discuss hats, however odd it is to think of Emily as a marine. He two watches the CAP go by, or does until he notes that there's been no reply to his comment, then he turns to see her pull off the hat and turn. It's fair to say that he's confused at the severity of the reaction, but does take the time to carefully place the book on his lap on the chair arm before he stands. He doesn't follow though, turning instead to flash Lleu a 'what should I do now? look, given he doesn't want to give his MPs a heart attack by chasing after her.

Then Atticus looks at /him/ with that look. Lleufer sighs and says really, really low, "Women are a pain in the ass. Maybe you should go talk to her." A glance to the MP's, "Exercise'm. If they can't keep up with you two, I'll kick their asses." Yep, smirk.

Atticus isn't about to leave two of Petra's books and his tablet behind and force Lleu to guard them, so once the MaA gives his permission, he delays only long enough to scoop all three up before following after her. Despite what might have been said, he doesn't go above a jog to close the distance given it isn't that great, and he actively doesn't want to antagonise his guards. Unsure if he should be addressing her with her title or not he settles for pulling alongside and then slowing to match pace as he asks, slightly flummoxed, "is it the title thing?"

As the other two move off, Lleufer reaches over to the small case he had brought with him and lays it into his lap. This he opens up. Within lies a violin and bow. With care, Lleu pulls it out and takes a moment to check the tuning keys and the four strings. There are a few sheets of music lying in the case which he sets upon the floor where, with his Arpay eyes, he'll have no trouble reading the music. Then he lightly begins to draw the bow over the strings to feel out the notes, going slowly and making corrections as he must because he's still learning how to play the instrument. The tune starts out slow but will pick up the pace as it goes.

<FS3> Lleufer rolls Fiddle: Good Success.

Emily isn't walking like someone defeated. She moves like nothing is wrong, but walks at a pace that is going to let her think. When he comes up alongside her, she is actually surprised at that, but he can still see the hurt in her eyes. She looks him over before continuing walking. "No, Atticus, I do not feel so strongly about 'title things' that must be so trivial and unimportant despite me asking you not to do exactly what you just did. I was simply just asking you not to do it for my health. Because I wished to simply see if you would do as I say. And also because it was on a Tuesday and I say such things on Tuesday. No, I had no personal feelings about it." 'Anger' may not be the best way to term it, but he's clearly upset her in a very deep way. "You've made your feelings known. If that is what it takes to break your commitment to me then so be it." She glances over to Lleu as he takes up the fiddle, then looks back to Atticus. Physically, she looks very healthy and there’s a confidence in her movements and the way she looks at Atticus. But he can still remember her at ten years old. He knows what real pain looks like in her eyes.

"It's what it takes to break my commitment to them," Atticus replies, not entirely sure if it'll help or not, but he's at least going to try. "After what they did to me, to you, to others… How could I keep a title only vested on their most trusted?" The music behind him is heard by one part of his brain, but doesn't break into the main focus of his consciousness for now. Lower, quieter, he continues, "I'm not giving them my list of crimes, you were right there, but I need to draw a line between who I was, and who I am now." He doesn't have any fancy words or arguments so he stops there, both in speech and movement. If she keeps walking he'll let her go.

"Them?" Emily stops and stares at him, even more hurt. "Why do we care about them? I am speaking about you and I, Atticus. You were vested to protect us. To guard us. All of us, not just my family. You have no idea how we felt about you. And now you just.." She steps back, chin trembling a moment. "Something gets hard and you just quit on me, leaving me alone with this." She steps backwards away from him, "I did not have much to fix, Atticus. That means a big part of me was just raised as a frakked-up royal. Scared. Isolated. I cannot change that. I wish I could. But I must either embrace it or fall apart. You think you're the only one who doesn't know who they are?" The expression on her face is like watching a heart get slowly torn in half. "And now I really am alone." She continues walking backwards to that point before she turns and continues going, the cap pressed to her face.

"Them" Atticus repeats with angry emphasis, "the ones who did this to us. If you can keep your links then that's on your conscience, but I can't. I reject them and what they made me think and do. How can I keep an honour they bestowed on me and still be sincere in that rejection? I'm not quitting, I'm standing up and saying no, that's not who I am any more. I will not use the past as a crutch, anything I earn here I earn on my own merit, that's how we move forward, not by sheltering in the past. I can't change what has happened, but I can draw a line and move on, leave the King with no hold over me." He doesn't pursue her though, nor look at the faces of the crew who's turned to watch their discourse. Instead he just hugs the books to his chest for a moment, then turns and heads back to where Lleu sits.

Emily stops to listen, back to him. When he's done, she continues walking, though. This time she has slumped her shoulders and looks more defeated.

Until the voices get raised, Lleu seems to be focused on what he's doing. It takes concentration to play a violin, and maybe more so when it hops up the pace to become fiddle music. His Arpay ears are sharp enough to catch snatches of their discourse, yet his attention is upon his playing. Up until Atticus' and Emily's voices become heated at the end. Ynyr pauses and lowers the bow and violin both, watching as the former knight returns. There's a glance for Emily, then back to Atticus but the Gunny doesn't ask any inane questions like 'are you all right?' because it's obvious, things aren't between them.

From the look on Atticus' face he genuinely can't understand how Emily can keep the link to the past that he finds now sickens him to the core. He's confused, and angry, and sad all at once. Retaking his seat he says nothing for a while, busying himself with finding the page he was up to with the scanning and setting the next one going. Eventually though he can't pretend Lleu isn't there any longer and looks across to him to offer a quiet, "sorry about that."

"Not a problem for me. You two will work it out in time." Lleu turns over the sheet music to something slower and quieter, then checks his chrono. He really only has time to practice one more piece if he's still going to get at least 6 hours sleep tonight. So he lifts the violin and bow back up and begins again. Ynyr plays softly, keeping the volume as low as he might so not to disturb Atticus's reading further. If nothing else, maybe it's soothing to listen to the music and read. One can hope so. When the piece is done, Lleu will put the instrument away and bid Atticus a good night.

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