The survivors of the downed Raptor discuss their options.
Location: Somewhere North Of Havison, Picon
Scene Number: 259
Scene 259 - Picon
It's been a long time since Tavo has woken up with this much pain and stiffness. It's not just the bruises, contusions, cuts, and the fact that his recently-dislocated shoulder has stiffened up, but it's also the fact that he slept on rocks inside a narrow cave, with only his flak jacket as a pillow. Still, he groans, starting to roll over and hissing in pain as he does. It's enough to wake him up sharply, dawn just breaking over the trees and mountains of Picon's main continent. Groaning, he hauls himself vertical, shaking his head and looking about to take stock. First step is Vasquez, to make sure the man is still alive.
Cate hasn't slept. She's sitting by the cave entrance, leaning against the wall. Their rifle rests in her lap. Seeing Gustavo stir causes her to straighten up as well, smothering a wince. "He passed during the night," she says quietly when she sees Tavo moving toward Vasquez. "Lost too much blood." The medic's voice is grim.
The Tauron hears the voices, and that's enough to draw her upright from her spot curled on her side. She groans slightly, feeling her own terrible aches move through her body. She feels the pain mostly in her chest where the straps of the harness tried to keep her from being thrown out of the ship while also trying to break her ribs. She breathes out a deep breath, and that makes her wince. She glances over toward Vasquez when Cate indicates him, and she frowns. "He'll be hard to move," she says quietly. "If things go south again."
Tavo's shoulders slump at Cate's news, punching a fist lightly into his thigh. This, of course, strikes a bruise, and he winces much more than a mere punch of disappointment would otherwise warrant. "Frak." Kneeling down, he reaches out, checking Vasquez's neck just because he has to. Of course, the medic is right, and he looks down, pulling the dogtag from around the dead man's neck, "He won't be hard to move. We won't be able to. I want to go get Norris's tags too before we go, if it's safe. Can't do anything about Costello and Lawrence, but at least the others won't be MIA." Glancing over to Cate, he inquires, "How you holding up, Doc?"
Cate nods in agreement with Tavo's assessment that they won't be moving Vasquez. "I didn't want to drag him out and risk drawing attention," she says softly, explaining why they got to share the cave with a corpse. The idea of going back to the Raptor makes her frown. "It's not safe. You know that. It's a prime spot for them to stake out hoping we'll go back for something. Not worth risking for a piece of metal from a dead guy," she says flatly. A shrug answers the latter question. "I'll live."
The reminder that Vasquez is dead slumps her shoulders, and she feels the cloud gather around her dark-haired head again. Isolde carefully brushes her fingertips across her brow, teasing her hair back from her eyes. Then she draws herself carefully onto her feet, groaning slightly as she does. Her flightsuit has been unzipped down to her navel, tied up around her hips, and her right arm is bandaged from the bullet graze. She limps forward a few steps, her leg numb from the rest on hard ground. She slides down slowly to sit next to Cate, shoulder to shoulder. "I'm more worried how we're going to signal the Picons and maybe the CF that we're down here." She feels a twinge of anxiety then. "Are they even looking for us?"
Tavo grimaces at Cate's response, but he nods grudging agreement. "Yeah. I guess so." Still, he tucks Vasquez's dogtag into one of the pockets of his webbing, and then moves back to haul up his flak jacket, pulling it carefully around his sling-clad arm, using the slashed side where Cate got it off of him the night before. "Not if they don't know where we are." Looking over to Isolde as he pulls his pack onto just his right shoulder, he adds, "My wireless is still down, but we could leave out reflec panels from the emergency kit. How far away is the secondary pickup point? Otherwise it's just mirrors, since smoke gives us away."
"Secondary point is further into enemy territory. Given that our Raptor couldn't get through, I wouldn't lay odds on a rescue Raptor making it either," Cate reasons. "I think we should head south, make our way through the city to friendly lines. We have a better chance there than frakking around out here in the wilderness." She looks over the two of them with concern. "You guys able to walk okay?"
"So." Isolde frowns. "Sounds like we need to try to get ourselves closer to where a SAR would mean something." That sets her head back into the cave wall, and she sighs out a slow breath. The mention of the city bobs her head with a nod. "More resources, places to secure... we could get to a building roof and be able to send a signal." Then she glances over toward Cate and Tavo. She sits on the question for a few moments before she nods. "My whole chest feels like an elephant sat on it, and I think a spider got into my flight suit last night." She itches at her leg unconsciously where the cut in the flightsuit tears up her calf.
"That doesn't help us much." Hurt and aching Tavo who just lost most of his squad is grumpy Tavo. Considering for a long moment, the big man nods to Isolde, clasping the waist-straps of his backpack so that it won't just slide off his right shoulder, "I can't shoot a rifle, but I can walk just fine. Right into the fire." He grunts thoughtfully, then nods, "Getting through the front lines won't be easy. Lots of Cylons. But friendly air cover's more likely closer we get."
Cate is no less grumpy, so she offers only a soft grunt in response to his observation. "Probably bruised or cracked some ribs Iz. Wish there was more I could do for it," Cate says with a sad frown. She nods to Tavo then. "Won't be easy, no, but what other choice do we have?"
"I'll take it like a champ." Isolde almost whines these words, which is an opposite of what she meant to say. She breathes out again, feeling around her ribs and wincing slightly. Then she looks back over toward Tavo. "Guess it'll be up to Cate to shoot the toasters this time." Then she nods slightly as the plan starts to formulate. "How far out do you think we are? I can't tell how much we came off-course."
"Get close enough to enemy lines to see how the lines are moving. Try to contact friendlies from there. If we can't, then we try to sneak through." Evidently, Tavo thought this through when he couldn't sleep last night. Glancing down to a small pile of discarded gear -- his ruined NVGs, his SAW ammo, a few other odds and ends that failed due to being immersed in the water -- he adds, "Don't know how far we are out, but Doc's right, we've got to head for the front lines, however far it is. And we'll have to move during the day, probably. They can see better than we can in the dark without En-Vee-Gees."
Cate frowns sympathetically at Isolde, then it turns into a grim smirk. "Somehow I think if you need me to be shooting Cylons, we're already well and truly frakked." She nods to Tavo. "I don't know either, but... we head south we should eventually hit the river right? And from there, if we can't see the city, we can just follow it to a city." There's a little sigh, seeing Tavo fiddling with his gear, and she asks, "Anybody got any food?"
"That's not at all unsettling," the ECO says in response to Cylons and the dark, and she folds her arms across her knees, stretching out her aching shoulders as she does. She lowers her head to her arms, focusing on the empty feeling in her stomach. She nods with Tavo's words. "Okay." She looks up toward Cate then. "So. Starting moving now?" Then she looks back to Cate. "The river." She repeats this, furrowing her brows. "Right. The river, because of all the bridges." She clues in then, and she narrows her eyes as she tries to think back to the last readout on the DRADIS she saw before the missiles struck.
Tavo pats his pack at Cate's question, "Three days for me. Two for all of us if we go light." He glances down at his slung arm, shaking his head slightly, "You shoot Marine-straight, Doc. You got it. Plus the Ensign and I'll chime in with our pistols if we need." He frowns in thought for a long moment, then nods, "South. Maybe south-southwest? We have to go further if we want any bridges. Otherwise we're finding a raft."
"Oh I can shoot straight," Cate agrees. "I just meant if we're shooting things we're in even bigger trouble than we already are." There's a tired sigh, then she says, "I don't have much either. Few snack bars. Guess the Sarge gets the gold star for being prepared," she says dryly, then nods to the both of them. "Sounds like a plan then."
"I dropped the emergency kit," Isolde confesses as she looks up from her droop. "I was too worried about Vasquez." She rubs at the back of her head. "Guess we're gonna be eating light." Then she glances over toward Cate, and nods slightly. "Alright." She looks at Vasquez now, frowning. "We should... we should go soon. It's daylight. We can make some progress before nightfall."
"Unless it broke, I've got a water filter in there too. So we should be set for water." Tavo flashes a little smile, "And a compass. You know how Scorpians are: just like Caprican Scouts." He holds up three fingers on his right hand in the Caprican Scout salute. Blowing out a breath, he nods to Isolde, "It's okay. We've got thousands of Cylons between us and safety. If we're out here for more than a couple of days, something else'll have gone wrong." He might be trying to be upbeat, but he's still a cynic.
"S'ok, Iz. We didn't grab it either. And Sarge is right - couple days on light rations isn't going to kill us." That's the job of the thousands of Cylons." Cate listens to the rest. "Guess we should head out then." She gets to her feet with a grimace, and casts a sad look back at Vasquez.
"Super encouraging," Isolde says dryly. Then she breathes out a heavy sigh before she presses her hands into her legs, drawing herself upright. She aches and every part of her wants a warm meal and sleep. But she manages to get to her feet with minimum complaint. She gives Cate's elbow a gentle squeeze before she nods slightly to Tavo. "Alright." Then she draws out her pistol, taking it into her hand in a relaxed hold. "Let's go." Her voice doesn't even squeak.
Tavo studies the pile of dead kit for a moment longer, then shakes his head, "Light weight, Tavo, light weight and moving fast gets you home." The words are murmured more than anything, and then he moves over to Vasquez, sinking down to one knee and touching the other man's brow, "Lords of Kobol, look over his soul, and the soul of those others lost." A pause, and then he adds, even more quietly, "...and watch over us too." Only then does he rise up to his feet again and make his way toward the front of the cage, nodding approvingly at the two women, "Expect the worst, be pleasantly surprised. Sometimes." He keeps his own pistol holstered, but ready to hand as needed.
Somewhere North Of Havison, Picon