PWD #23: What Dreams May Come
What Dreams May Come
Summary: Cole is urged to prayer after dreaming of Maggie.
Date: 12/12/12
Related Logs: None
Cole Iphigenia 
Chapel
The chapel is one of the few quiet places to be found on a battlestar. Even rarer still, it's one of the few places that doesn't look like it's part of a battlestar. Heavy blue curtains have been hung from the walls, obscuring the bulkheads. The lights are kept low, adding a certain mystery and gravitas to the space. The central altar is made of a pale grey wood, as are the several rows of pews which extend from it. Laid against the far right wall is a long, low table with several rows of simple white votive candles to be used as vigil lights. Centered among them is a brass plate for burnt offerings from supplicants. Several cushions rest on the floor before the table, where the faithful may kneel to offer their prayers to the Lords and Ladies of Kobol. On the left wall are several compartments which have been sectioned off for private use.
PWD #23

The chapel is one of the few quiet places to be found on a battlestar. Even rarer still, it's one of the few places that doesn't look like it's part of a battlestar. Heavy blue curtains have been hung from the walls, obscuring the bulkheads. The lights are kept low, adding a certain mystery and gravitas to the space. The central altar is made of a pale grey wood, as are the several rows of pews which extend from it. Laid against the far right wall is a long, low table with several rows of simple white votive candles to be used as vigil lights. Centered among them is a brass plate for burnt offerings from supplicants. Several cushions rest on the floor before the table, where the faithful may kneel to offer their prayers to the Lords and Ladies of Kobol. On the left wall are several compartments which have been sectioned off for private use.

Ari's been in here for hours, but the priestess should be used to the rituals by now that the viper pilot lends himself to on his weekly day of leave. The length of which he kneels there varies greatly, however, depending on how the week prior went. Today's is a marathon.

Bare chested and sweat pants rolled up to just above the knees, Cole is genuflecting on the rectangular wooden flat that contains a layer of jagged rocks. The stones press into his perspiring skin, the full of his weight resting on the gravel. An oblong shaped cylinder is in his grasp behind his back, hands fisted on the cold metal to either side of the leather strap that bifurcates it. The scroll of his Orphic Hymns is unfurled on the wooden stand that he reads from in a deep melodic timber.

Iphigenia has gone about her day. There was visiting the sick and imprisoned. There was counseling, done in the chaplain's admin office and outside of it. There was the taking of confession, a few small services, and some communication back and forth communiques from Piraeus. And all through the day she's kept an unobtrusive eye on Ari, as is her inclination. She never interrupts him, not outright, really. But on occasion, the priestess has been known to make her will clear during long winding prayer sessions such as this. Here's an example, right in this moment: as he prays, without disrupting his cadence, she steps along side him and gently places a glass of water on the stand. Fasting? Acceptable, to a degree. Dehydration? Not when he's back on duty tomorrow. She doesn't linger, or at least doesn't intend to, as she begins to step away.

And yet Ari's hands stay firmly grasping the rod behind his back, the tight grip causing shots of white across his knuckles. Maybe it's only because he's close to the end of his hymnal scroll that he toughs out the last moments of kneeling on the sharp pebbles and depriving his dry mouth of that tempting glass of water. His eyes dart over to the cup and then follow the line to the hand, to the arm and then up to the face of the Sister before returning to the words that he stumbles over when trying to recite them purely from memory. Only after running through a tribute to Hestia, Hypnos, Oneiroi, and finally Thanatos does he ease back on his haunches, and start to pick out the pebbles from his skin. "Sister." He greets quietly to wherever she might have roamed off to, his eyes downcast to his task.

It's only the title that stops her. "Ari." she replies in solemn greeting. If he doesn't keep her from doing so, she settles down to pluck stones off his body. "Please drink. You have dispensation to do so." The please is courtesy. "There are limitations on the extremes to which your penances may extend; I don't think I've seen you drink at all today." It's an old argument maybe, and her tone isn't particularly forceful; just patient.

"I dreamt about her again last night." The 'her' being pretty self explanatory by now between the two. No hand strikes out to stop Iphigenia from helping him, each pebble making a little plunk as it falls back to its brethren in the box. "It was so vivid I swear I could smell her hair. I could feel her breath on my skin." There is a winded quality to Cole's voice, stuck somewhere in between pain and euphoria. There is a murmured word of thanks as the last of the pebbles gets jostled from his flesh, a few spots deeply reddened and a few even bloodied.

"Where was she?" Iphigenia asks gently, her hand withdrawing once all the pebbles are removed. A lot of this is listening. "In the Fields? Somewhere else?" It's an invitation to talk to her about it. How odd. She feels like she has met his wife, and yet only knows her shade. "How did she seem to you?"

Ari untwists the end of the cylinder, pouring out another smaller tube from inside. He grabs up a fist of the rocks, turning his palm into a funnel as he pours them back into their container. "Running and laughing through a field of poppies. Taunting me to catch her. My fingers catch the fabric of her sun dress, and then…" He makes a poof gesture, smirking at how absurd it must sound. "Loving. Always loving." A pause. "It's her birthday you know. In less than a week." Once the rocks are put away, he reaches for his scroll, wrapping the thin oiled paper around the tube holding the rocks before both are put back into the leather wrapped holder.

"During Saturnalia?" Gen smiles at that. "A playful time to have been born. How will you celebrate?" She nudges the glass closer to him, nodding toward it.

Cole runs his arm over his forehead, wiping away some of the perspiration. "Hard to properly celebrate when so far away. What do you buy the woman wants for nothing? She loves flowers but always gets a little sad when they wilt and die." Finally he relents to her silent insistance and takes a deep gulp of the glass she provided him. He eases back to sit on his butt, unfolding his legs in front of him. "Hand me my little first aid kit, will you?"

Iphigenia turns from her seated position and gently lifts said kit, turning back and opening it with a grace that resembles some kind of ancient tea ceremony before holding it outward to him. "There are beautiful flowers on Piraeus." she comments. "I have a project I've been developing on the ground. Perhaps you might help me. It may take up one of your leave days, though."

"When they're not frozen, you mean." Ari speaks of the flowers, his normal good humor resurfacing as some of the fervor of the rite is wearing off. He plucks some antibiotic wipes out of his kit, riping open the little packet with the benefit of his teeth. "What's this project then?" It gets asked out of curiosity and not obligation while he cleans up his knees, mindful of infection. Infection is /not/ his version of ritual.

"The establishment of a temple on Piraeus. Right now it's a very temporary space, but I was able to acquire the proper idols and sundries to be able to take down to the planet. It's a few boxes. Someone to help me transport and unpack them from Orion to planetside would be something I'd be grateful for."

Ari clucks his tongue. "And here I thought it was your round about way of asking for a date again." A smile broadens on his features while he rolls the legs of his pants down. "Yeah, sure. You know I'll help you. Whatever you need." His tone is earnest as he tents his knees and draws an arm around them, his other occupied in ferrying more water to his lips from which he drinks of greedily.

She smiles at that, in a way reminiscient of mysterious young women in centuries-old paintings. "I appreciate it. The help, I mean. Sit down for a little bit, and I'll pour you more water." It's an invitation to talk more if he wants, or give confession, if he need it. "One day I'm going to call that bluff you know, just for the sake of doing so, in front of anyone and everyone, and won't you feel on-the-spot." As if she were serious. Well, Gen does have a good poker face.

"Careful, Sister, or I'll be doing a few more days of kneeling in penance." His tone is joking of course, but his eyes don't have that normal crinkle of humor around them. "I think I'm good." Ari groans himself to his feet, leaning over to give an air kiss to her cheek and with a reach of fingertips, grabs ahold of the cylinder that represents one of his favored rites. He flips its weight end over end a few times, the metal slapping heavily into his palm. "Just let me know when we're doing your supply run, yeah?"

Her own smile is well meant, but also tight around the eyes. The air of restraint around her is less a product of her calling and more that of her upbringing; Virgonese aristocrats are raised to have a stiff upper lip. "Oh, I would never do that." she says faux airily, except she would never do that. "I'd like your word that you'll have at least two more glasses of water before you hit your rack tonight, please." It's hard for her not to take steps involving seeing to his well-being, and she would do the same for anyone else walking down the path he's chosen.

Cole's hand overlaps the place on his tattooed chest where anatomy tells us a heart lies. "Solemn promise. I'll even make it three, which will insure I'll have to pee half a dozen times during the night, but I don't forsee much sleep in my future anyways." With his belongings in tow, he starts heading towards the hatch. "Sleep sweet, Sister, when the gods allow."

She shakes her head a little, but her smile increases in some small degree. "I shall do my very best." she assures him. With that, she goes to tending the portion of the room he'd used for prayer; she is not above the most modest of tasks.

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