Tamlin is giving a dance lesson. Eli provides the musical accompaniment.
Location: Rec Room, Deck 8, //Galactica//
Related Scenes: None
Scene Number: 918
Eli sits in a corner, as far out of the way as he can possibly get. He's got a guitar in his lap and is studying something in a binder. The guitar has definitely seen better days. In fact, it's a piece of crap. Still, from the notes he picks out, it sounds okay. He's plucking away at it very softly and humming. He can't really be heard over the din of the room.
"No, I am not doing this in some storage closet in the back end of beyond in the ship, Tally. You wanted to learn, you need the practice, and you could do with getting over your nerves besides." Tamlin sweeps into the room only a second or two after her voice, looking, for anyone who knows the woman, quite unlike herself. No grease, hair pinned up, and a borrowed flowing white sleeveless dress, something likely plucked from the closet of a Pican beach house. She has a small lap harp tucked under her arm, the man who walks in beside her, both much taller and much wider than she. He's dressed in civvies, jeans, t-shirt. Typical.
In the sea of uniforms and sweats, anything different immediately stands out. Normally, Eli is a head's down kind of guy. He doesn't get up in anyone else's business because he prefers the same. He looks up and at the (for the military) oddly-dressed pair. He doesn't say anything, instead his thumb idly flips over a string.
"Don't know why you want to do it...here." Tally, whom this seems to be, could not look more uncomfortable. Tamlin winds her way through the collection of people, seeming not to notice at all how often she's getting the side-eye from the gathered. Even a catcall or two from a pair, male and female, who are wearing their deck coveralls, Tamlin's more common attire. Ah...comrades. "Because you're going to be in front of god and everyone so you might as well work it out now." Tamlin sidesteps, as she catches sight of the man and his guitar, "Pardon." A hand catches at her dress, twisting the flow of it behind her so she doesn't whip poor Eli in the face with it. She stops not so far away, setting down her harp, before she turns back to the man she brought with her, "Help me move this." There's a table and chairs ripe for being moved out of the way to make a clear space.
"Do I have competition for the bill tonight?" says Eli as he leans on the top of his guitar. "I was told I was going to be a solo act." His tone is dry and there's the barest hint of a grin tugging at his lips.
Tamlin and Tally make some space, enough for some maneuvering, and whatnot. Eli's words bring Tamlin's head up, and she flashes the man a smile, "Oh, well, that depends entirely on whether or not you can strum out a waltz on that thing there." Her tone is light, "If you're busking, I'll throw in a ten credit note if you'd be willing to fake it." Tally, once the work is done, seems content to slink off on the side.
"Oh, I'm not very good," says Eli. "In fact, I only picked this up a few months ago. If you guys can actually play, then I'm just going to frak it up." He looks over their clothing and upnods. "What's with the duds? You're risking getting written up for a reason."
"Oh, we're not playing. I just somehow ended up having to be the instructor and the accompaniment. Tally here," she chucks a thumb in the big man's direction, "needs to learn how to do a Caprican waltz." She looks back at the big man, who looks much more an engineer or a marine, than any sort of dancer, "This is why you should never, never, ever, date a Caprican girl." Says the obviously, by her accent, Caprican girl. Tamlin looks back at Eli, "If I showed you the melody, would you be willing to give it a try? I would really, truly, appreciate it."
"No one needs to learn how to waltz. You need to learn how to fire a gun, or cook. But waltz?" Eli shakes his head and chuckles. Then he takes a deep breath. "OK, so this is probably going to be terrible, but..." He attempts to pluck out a simple waltz.
"If only your opinions carried the weight they rightfully deserve. Unless of course it means that you, my good sir, actually know how to waltz?" Tamlin's eyebrow rises, in question, but her attention shifts to Eli's playing. That smile again, "That was perfectly suitable. Would it be too much to ask if you could play for just a short while?" She rises to her feet, hands unconsciously settling the folds of her dress into place.
"I do not. I'm a surgeon, not a dancer," says Eli as he continues to pluck along a totally serviceable basic waltz. One two three, one two three. No flourishes, but it's steady. "And I'd very much like to keep it that way in case you've got ideas."
"I don't." Tamlin doesn't say that with any heat or flippancy. She simply states a fact. A smile, and a "thank you," as she goes to retrieve Tally. "Alright, we're going to work on the dance we've been practicing. We'll start slow, but we'll increase the pace as we go," here she looks back at Eli, as he is her accompanist, and needs to know the gameplan. "A few more weeks of practice, one night of panic and life with be wonderful, Tally." The big man gets into position, waiting for Tamlin to join him. As she moves, her demeanour and bearing change. From the usually relaxed, even in a dress, sailor to a woman who carries herself with the sort of poise you would expect from someone that sounds as hoity-toity as that Caprican accent of hers.
Eli may be keeping the beat, but he's inexperienced enough that he has to focus on it. For a moment, the waltz is a little fast, but then he slows it down and starts to tap his toe to keep things smoother. Eventually he gets into it. It's still quite basic, but he adds a little flourish here or there. He's more focused on what he's doing, but every now and again, he looks up at the dancers.
Tally, for his part, is fully two left feet, though he's making a very concerted effort not to step on Tamlin's feet, or trip on her dress. It's apparent, once they actually start dancing, why she's wearing a dress, instead of pants. While it's no Caprican ball gown, she dances with the skill that only comes from years of pain and long practice, and makes due with what she has. The movements of the fabric, as it folds and flips around Tally's legs, while beautiful to look out, can be a handful for the male partner. Eli's flourishes are worked into the dance, as the pair, now just a tad more comfortable, fall into better step. "You're doing great, Tally. Honestly." Every now and again, when the big man glances over at the small crowd that's trickled over to watch, she quietly directs him back to what they're doing.
Eventually, Eli starts making mistakes. He loses the rhythm, which is likely to really mess up the dancing pair. He mutters a curse under his breath and tries to pick it back up again. "Sorry, sorry. You'd be better off with a recording." He rubs his two fingers together.
Tamlin continues the dance, even once Eli starts to drop the rhythm. She brings it to a quiet close, before she steps away from Tally, "You were wonderful. Moira will be so pleased." The man actually blushes, before she shoos him off and he goes to find some much needed water. Tamlin turns back to Eli, shaking her head, "Not at all. You were a wonderful accompanist. Learning to play any instrument is difficult, and even more of a challenge when you're playing to task." She does not actually touch the man, but she does hold out a hand, a gesture as if to ask him to let her see his fingers. All of her that he can see, bear heavy callouses. "Thank you so much for the wonderful work. I'm Tamlin."
Eli shifts the guitar over and sets it in its case. He shakes her hand, "Eli Cadmus." His hand is rather the opposite. It's soft with faint callouses in unconventional places, like where he holds a scalpel. "I picked it up to keep up the strength in my fingers and to stretch out my muscles."
"Good to meet you, Dr. Cadmus." Tamlin settles into a nearby seat, one of the ones they moved previously, settling her dress around her, "Steel core strings can do some serious damage to your fingers. I'm not sure how necessary your fingers are to your work, but you might consider switching to nylon or wire wound strings like she uses," the she Tamlin indicates with a sweep of her hand, is the harp. "You'll be able to play longer with less pain or potential loss of sensitivity in the tips of your fingers."
"Yeah, I've heard that. I've been trying to get some sent, but that's harder than you'd think, what with killer robots and all," says Eli. He kicks the beaten-up guitar case closed. "The war's really put a dampener on my musical ambitions."
Tamlin laughs, sliding far enough forward on her seat to be able to rest her forearms on her knees. And with that simple movement she's back to being just a deckhand in a dress. Normal, not Caprican formal. "You just need to know the right people. Times like this, it's all about asking around to see who might have what you need. As it happens, I have plenty of replacement strings. I could certainly donate some to the cause." The harp if one counts, has 16 strings.
"Yeah, well, I'm not what you'd call a people person. It's a little late for me to get on peoples' good sides and start wheeling and dealing," says Eli as he scratches the side of his cheek. "Does that work? Harp strings for guitar strings, I mean. Like I said, I'm just learning this stuff."
"I'm not sure what you mean. I'm a people, and we seem to be getting on rather well." Tamlin rises from her seat, moving to retrieve the harp, bringing it back and settling it in her lap, "A string is a string, really. What you look at it what sort of sound you want out of the instrument. A nylon string will give you a lighter, brighter sound." Tamlin demonstrates, plucking a few of the nylon strings, "You tend to find them on guitars which are used primarily for classical or acoustic guitar pieces. You can do wire wrapped," she demonstrates again, "And they will give you a richer, slightly deeper sound. You don't tend to sue these for guitars, but it's doable. Steel string is the toughest, and usually used for country, rock, music of that sort." She offers the instrument, if you should want to look at it, "For your purposes, the nylon strings should more than suffice and they'll be much easier on your fingers."
"Well, to be fair, you haven't known me very long," says Eli. He's just about to reach out to test the harp strings when a call comes over the comm. Paging Doctor Cadmus. He takes a deep breath. "Gotta go. That's the pain in the ass thing about being in the military. Orders from on high," He points up, presumably to mean the comm. "Have a good night. And good luck with the dance instruction."
"I'm going to need it. Poor man." Not Eli, but Tally, who seems to be making his way back over, "Good day, Dr. Cadmus."