2237-07-28 - Atonement

Kell goes on a 'rescue mission' for Astraea after she runs off from the bar on a drunken mission of her own. She reveals something she probably shouldn't have.

Date: 2237-07-28

Location: Somewhere

Related Scenes: None

Plot: None

Scene Number: 1291

Jump to End

All hotels have a gift shop. Beachside hotels have expansive ones with swimsuits and all the other necessities of resort life. Such as sarongs. And Astraea managed, drunkenly, to pick through racks until she found one appropriately white (off-white) and lacy (mostly). It would work as a veil. Just tie it up, drape it just-so, and no one would know the difference. It was one of those strokes of brilliance that could only come while drunk and/or high. It takes time, however; she had to navigate the hotel, the shop, and the pockets of her dress uniform at the register for appropriate payment..

And all the other drunken members of Fleet milling about, to boot.

She’s trying to find her way back to the restaurant through the hallways now and sometimes, she takes a wrong turn or has to stop to lean against a wall and close her eyes. It’s one of the later moments now. She has the intended veil in hand, but she’s leaning against a wall with her eyes closed letting the world spin.

She needs more alcohol.

Kell has finally left the restaurant and bar behind when the Raptor pilot was taking a bit too long on her quest for the mystical veil. He has alcohol but it is /his/ and it would be doubtful that he would surrender it easily, since there is only a quarter amount left from the original pour. After taking a couple of turns, asking some passersbyers about an intoxicated pilot in Colonial Forces dress uniform possibly carrying a package, Razor is directed in a general direction. That is when he spots Astraea leaning against the wall, taking a break, "Nova! You still alive there?" He asks, not jogging but walking in her direction.

It takes a moment for Kell’s voice to process through the haze, but once it does, Astraea straightens and looks in his direction. She blinks a few times and smiles brightly. “I found it!” The pronouncement comes with a proud display of the sarong held in the air. “A suitable stand in for a veil.” There's not much of a slurring to her words; just the spinning of the halls from moving so fast.

The woman moves a few steps towards Razor, but stops upon seeing his drink. She frowns as she looks up at him. There's a hint of something sad in her eyes. “Y’didn’t bring any for me? Why not?”

"Because if you can't find your way back to the restaurant, then you've had enough, Nova." Kell says with a scowl, he isn't three-sheets to the wind yet, having developed a very nice buzz though. The glass of whiskey is kept near his chest, in hand, "You have to make it to Pi's wedding first, then you can drink some more." He does look at the sarong, looking rather impressed with her find, "That's... a very nice pick, good thinking! Van was worried about a substitute ring and I suggested his class ring. He seemed to be rather keen on that idea." He then offers his hand to Astraea so he can walk her towards the beach where everyone participating is gathering, "C'mon, let's go to the beach." The other hand holds his drink which he brings to his lips for a sip.

“I woulda found my way back. Just needed a bit of a rest.” Astraea looks briefly vexed with that scowl. “It ain't been that long.” Not in drunk time, at least. But she's shorter and smaller than he. Less alcohol needed to be wasted. However, the frustration fades quick with his praise for her selection and she quickly brightens, looking down to the laced cloth in hand. It's tucked carefully into the crook of her elbow as she slides her hand into Kell’s. “They got plenty of ‘em in th’ shop. Bought one m’self when we got in. Not this type, but I remembered seein’ ‘em.”

'Ah' is the answer from Kell and once Astraea has securely fastened herself to his hand, he starts walking them towards the exit of the hotel, not back towards the restaurant, "Good thinking then. Those two are pretty damned excited, it's going to be nice. They definitely deserve it." Especially after what Isolde went through, a much more difficult time than he did when he was shot down and behind enemy lines.

“They are,” Astraea answers with a slow nod, content to allow Kell to lead her; entirely trusting that he knows where to go. “Shame they can't have somethin’ big an’ fancy. Bet Pi would like that. Ain't never been to a big wedding m'self.” She leans in against the Libran’s arm, looking up at him. “Bet you've been to plenty though.” She shifts her hand against his, threading her fingers through his as they walk.

“I'm glad y’were promoted, Kell. You deserved it. You're an incredible pilot an’ one of th’ best officers I know.”

Hearing that, Kell shakes his head, "I think this is actually better, it's more intimate, it... means more. To the heart." There is a pause before he adds, "I'm sure they will have a bigger ceremony with family and everything where there is a break in the war." Or an end in the war, but Razor isn't going to be the first one to mention that, not one to offer false hope. "Something quick like this is perfect, since we're probably shipping out soon, like last time."

As for him attending many, Razor once more shakes his head, "Nah, not that many. Went to a couple of my friends but it was before I was transferred to the Vanguard." When she compliments him, he grins, "Thanks Nova, but like I said earlier, I'm only as good as the group is. Couldn't have done it myself." With that said, he brings the glass to his lips, slowly draining the rest of the whiskey.

“Like a long leave or somethin’. Sorta thing soldiers would get in wars back in th’ day.” Astraea remembers those from school, when she was younger. “Somethin’ to where they can plan an’ invite people.” She shakes her head a little; as if the concept is almost lost on her. Two years at war and it’s hard to consider what one would do with a true swath of free time. More than this single week they’ve had to kick back in the evenings or a day. “But yer right, there is somethin’ special ‘bout doin’ it before we ship back out.”

She does snort, faintly, as he rebuffs he compliment. Stopping in her tracks, Astraea reaches to stop him as well with a hand to the breast of his uniform jacket. “Kell… Y’got promoted, y’earned th’ Silver Cluster, a DAM, an’ a damned Fleet Commendation. Th’squadron is a part of it, but you’re damn good yourself. There is no one I prefer having watch my tail out there. Period.”

Feeling the tug in his hand when Nova stops, Kell is forced to stop as well, turning to face her to see why she slowed. When she speaks of his promotions and then the medals, Razor appears to be thinking on what he has achieved, actually think. "Well, the way you say it... it does sound rather impressive." He does shoot her an appreciative smile, "Thanks Nova, your words to mean a lot, helps instill confidence in me when I'm uncertain sometimes. I guess I just never slowed down to think about it, we had too much on our plate. The only thing we could do is continue to look forward, so we don't get left behind."

“Dunno why you’d be uncertain,” Astraea says, blinking at him. “Ever. Y’got assigned to one of th’most elite units in th’fleet as an ensign. You’d have every right to walk around with a swagger.” There’s a pause with a bit of a smirk, “Though I’m damn glad you don’t.” She blinks a few times, fighting away a wave of drunk. “Gotta move forward,” she echoes, repeating his words slowly. Processing them, perhaps, as she lets them roll over and through her. She brushes a hand over the lapels of his dress uniform.

Without much warning, she leans up. To say anything would mean to think too much about it. Thinking would lead to second-guessing and second-guessing would lead to negation. Nova doesn’t want to stop herself and risk regret; leave isn’t a time for that. It’s for just going forth and doing and worrying later. Looking forward so you don’t get left behind. So Astraea just leans up while curling her fingers -- carefully; she won’t leave a crease -- into Kell’s jacket to pull him to her to kiss him.

Everything that Astraea says is true and makes perfect sense, but for some reason, Kell never saw it that way. He always saw himself as inferior to the other pilots, less combat experience, less years as a pilot, brand new to the Colonial Forces. "I guess after tonight, I have more confidence, especially with these shiney new medals, yeah?" He says with a bit of amusement as he looks at Nova with a grin.

What happens next, though, is completely unexpected and if he hadn't had so many drinks of whiskey tonight, he may have stopped it before it happened. But instead, Nova gets her kiss in as he is pulled in for a brief moment. Their lips brush and before she can push in further, Astraea would feel two strong hands holding on her upper arms, pulling her back slightly, just enough to have a little bit of separation again as he knows if he uses too much force, she may fall over, "Nova... what are you doing?" Part confusion, part disbelief in his voice.

There's a bit of surprise in Astraea’s mien as Kell separates them and she's caught enough off guard by it that she doesn't even have words for a moment. She just stares at him as she tries to process what just happened. They started to kiss, but then- he stopped? Why? She doesn't look betrayed or hurt, just confused in her own way.

“I thought…” There's a measure of uncertainty in her voice. She doesn't try to break away at least, but she does briefly close her eyes as she tries to find the words to fill the gaps. “It just… seemed th’ right moment. Leave is almost over an’...” She opens her eyes again and looks up to him, question in her gaze.

When Astraea tries to explain, Kell's confusion remains as he shakes his head slightly, "Right... but I'm not Jigger. He's the one you like, Nova." Of course, he didn't know that they already had a heart to heart as he isn't the type to dip into other people's business unless he is directly involved, and in this case, he believes that Nova is a bit too tipsy. His explanation seems simple enough, and straightforward as if to set the intoxicated night straight, no offense or insult intended.

“Jigger an’ I are just friends,” Astraea points out quietly. “He doesn't…” She takes a deep breath. She's too drunk to eloquently explain things and it's maybe not her place to go into the details anyway. She knows her end. Kell still has her upper arms, but she lifts her hands to settle against the front of his jacket; palms flat and touch light. “I… I like you, too.” She stares at one of those medals now, using it to focus. “An’ I can't get… hung up in somethin’ that ain't there.”

She looks uncomfortable in the moment. “I thought… I guess I read things wrong.”

That is something that Kell isn't experienced with when Astraea says that she likes him too, his brows furrowing up into a slight frown, "What do you mean? You can't like him, and then like me. It's not that easy..." Relationships, at least for Razor, is a bit more different with the way he was brought up. Taking in a breath, he releases it slowly as he looks up at the ceiling of the hotel lobby, "C'mon, let's keep going to the boardwalk." Releasing her arms, he starts leading her towards the exit, "We've flown on each other's wings a lot, you know I would trust you with my life, just like I would trust Van with my life as well. That is what I treasure the most, and I don't want to change any of that. To cloud any of that."

“You.. You can't tell me who or what I can like,” Astraea says, voice raising a bit in that way of drunken emotions. Not angry, just frustrated at having what she shared brushed off. “It ain't like I chose it. An’ it damn well ain't easy.” She doesn't fight being led down the corridor once again, however, but it's with much of the figurative wind out of her sails. The Scorpian pilot lets out a long breath, but nods finally. “I trust you with mine, too, Razor.” But the way she says it, it's clear it's not so simple a thing in her mind as his.

Kell doesn't seem to understand but he doesn't contest her words eithers, he knows he isn't her and how Astraea feels he can only guess at. So to play it safe, he doesn't speak further on the subject as they head out of the hotel lobby and begin making their way across the street towards the boardwalk so they can start looking for the gathering that is Van and Isolde's wedding. "I'm sorry things didn't work out with you and Jigger. I'm sure with the war going on, people are in different places. Some are looking for love to distract them and keep hold of their humanity. Others are just focused on fighting the Cylons and staying alive."

“Don’t be sorry,” Astraea offers quietly in answer, with just a hint of bitterness in her tone. To hear it from Kell of all people almost stings worse. Especially on the tail of him turning her down in kind. “I just happened to… have th’ shit luck of really likin’ what turned out to seemin’ly be th’ only two guys in th’ fleet who apparently couldn’t care less.” She tries to laugh a bit with the words, but it doesn’t come out very well. She takes in a slow breath, but it doesn’t do much for her; she’s still too drunk. Instead she just leans in against him. Needing him to lead the way to the boardwalk.

“I ain’t got humanity left. Killed too many people for that.”

Hearing her words, Kell frowns slightly and glances at Astraea but chooses to remain silent, knowing that it is most likely the alcohol talking just like the other day with Aubrey being completely tanked as well. Her last sentence though is not something he can ignore, "Don't say that, Nova, we all have humanity left. It doesn't matter what you did in the past, what matters is what you do now. I believe in the eyes of the Gods, atonement is real." He says as he continues to lead them towards where Van, Isolde, and the others are probably waiting.

“I hope it is,” Astraea says, quietly and with a real, true hope for Razor’s words. “S’why I joined. Went through Academy an’ flight school. Joined th’ Fleet. To atone.” She drops her hand back down into his, holding tight for a moment before relaxing her grip. “I wanna save as many lives as possible before I inevitably lose my own.”


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