Emrys corners Astraea to discuss what went down between them when they were drunk.
Location: Observation Deck
Related Scenes: None
Scene Number: 372
It's strange being on a ship with a canteen. Maybe not for those who served on the Galactica or who had served on other large ships, but the Vanguard had been Astraea's first ship assignment, so the Dauntless is a very new thing in some ways. Dressed in duty blues with the jacket unbuttoned to indicate she's fresh off-duty, the jig steps into the canteen and just sort of stands there a few paces inside the hatch. She's got a bit of an owlish look at she takes things in, getting her bearings.
Emrys is likewise fresh off duty. He's got some more experience with canteens, and is pleased to see one again. He almost bumps into Astraea, which is awkward to say the least. "Nova." He greets after a moment. "How are you doing?" It's clear he isn't quite sure what to say, but he's trying to remain professional.
Why are people always running her over? She's not the shortest one on the ship! Right? You'd think pilots at least would be more aware of their surroundings. The Scorpian moves, quickly, a few paces forward and to the side. "Fine," she answers.
Narrator: But she was not fine, she was not fine at all.
Tucking her head down slightly, the Raptor pilot moved down an aisle, drawing her arms in around herself and... wrong aisle. Mailing supplies. With a muttered swear in Leonese, she starts circling the long way 'round towards the personal care. Hair supplies. She needs a new moisturizer for hers; she hadn't noticed how low she was before they shipped out.
In Emrys' case, he was just too busy checking out the canteen supplies to look where he was going. He watches Nova go, and then moves around to the personal care. Hair supplies. Thanks to Eva he has product for days, but he could use a new comb. And there's Nova again. "Hey. Nova." This time it sounds less awkward. Firmer.
You would think with the care they put into snacks from the various colonies that it'd be easier to find products for hair care for different types of hair, but Astraea seems to be having a hard time with that. She has to crouch down to rifle through a lower shelf. And then there's Emrys again. She flinches at the change in tone. The woman, however, does not look up. Nope. Instead, she just answers as she continues shifting through a few times. "Hawk." There's a flat, even tone to her voice as she does so. A couple bottles are picked up and turned to review the ingredients.
"We should talk." is the next thing out of Emrys' mouth. "Not necessarily here, but...we need to talk." He picks up his comb. It's much easier for him than it is for her. Practically everything in here was made for his hair, or hair like it.
Wanna talk about lengthy hair routines? Astraea has to braid hers -- tightly -- to fit into a helmet. Sure, she could be one of those chicks that shaves it down, but she's proud of her natural hair, damnit. She finally decides on one of the bottles and straightens. Clutching it firmly, she looks to Emrys for a long moment with uncertainty clear in her body language. "Why?"
"Well, because I want to talk to you." Emrys offers, a little lamely. There's nothing threatening or aggressive in his body language, though. "Seriously, it's really not something to go into here. But we need to talk. Please?"
She's off-duty and so does he, it would appear, but he's still a superior officer. Astraea lets out a slow sigh, looking down to the bottle she holds. "Yessir. Lead the way to-" she shrugs, arms dropping to her sides. Defeated, in a sense. "Wherever."
Emrys doesn't argue the sir, right now. Instead he'll just head to the checkout line, first. "No sense not getting what you need while you're here." He notes. It's only when she's checked out and ready to go that he'll lead the way somewhere quieter.
Walking around the ship with hair care products. Not the most... normal thing, but it at least gives Astraea something physical to hold onto; like some sort of anchor. The woman follows Emrys, staring at the deck plating just behind his feet as he leads the way. Just another set of stairs up and to the Observation Deck. She can't help but look at the viewport then. The Vanguard only had small views of space; this one is much, much better. It gives her something grander to look at, at least. The woman moves slowly towards it, remaining silent for the time being.
"So." Emrys begins, to give himself time to collect his thoughts as the two stare out into space. He's long since tucked his new comb away. "The last night of shore leave. We were both drunk." The way this conversation sounds, it's clear why he wanted to have it away from prying ears. "It..did not go so well."
There's a flinch from Astraea, but she doesn't turn from the view. She doesn't even focus on Emrys' reflection in the viewport. Nope. Instead, she focuses on Caprica within the view. "No," she says quietly. "It didn't." There's an extended period of quiet as tension builds across her shoulders. She starts to say something else, but ultimately falls silent again.
"You were going to say something?" Emrys prompts, as she aborts whatever it was that she was going to say. He's silent, waiting to see if she'll come back around to whatever was about to come out of her mouth.
She takes a breath, but deflates. Astraea looks down to the bottle she holds, as if it might have answers for her. Hint: it doesn't. After a time, she just shrugs. "Are... are you plannin' to go to th' Major about me?"
Emrys shakes his head. "No. I probably should. I think there's probably a regulation somewhere I'm breaking. But...no." Another shake of his head, and a deep breath. "When I woke up, and got my head clear, I did the math..." Ah yes, his emotional math. "And realized that would be the dumbest thing I could do, under the circumstances."
"Jigger told me it's... probably in my record somewhere already. I mean, I went to Academy on Caprica and they probably wouldn't be, y'know, lax in their records, right?" Astraea's mumbling and talking fast, still staring at the planet that's the target of their new assignment. "So... at least th'Colonel knows, I bet. It's not like I... enlisted under false pretenses, alright? I..." She lets out a slow, shaking breath. "Th' timer was off. I was forced to plant th' things. Do it or else sort of work. If I put that one, my family had a home for another month. It was supposed to go off after everyone was out of th' mall, after hours, property damage only. Turns out later, th' clan that controlled mine was tryin' to ramp up th' war."
Her voice lowers a fair bit. "Th' ICJPK told me, later, that I was considered... collateral, really. Acceptable losses, as it were. So they helped me become a refugee. Gave me all th'literature on enlistin', scholarships an' all that. I doubt they'd do that without makin' sure that th' Academy also knew my background."
"I hope so." Emrys says at the talk of it being in the records. "Anyway...whether it is or whether it isn't, like I said...I'm not going to talk about it." There's a pause. "It sounds like you've had a really rough time of it. I'm...I'm sorry I reacted the way I did. But you know what it's like, growing up with that going on in the background."
"That's... all Scorpia is in some places," Astraea says quietly, letting out a slow breath. "And for some of us... if you don't get involved, it means not eatin' or havin' a roof over your head. It means not... it means seein' your family threatened." She lifts a hand to rub at her face. "I didn't enjoy it. I didn't wanna do it. I was more of a thief, Hawk. Sneak into places type of shit. But they figured if I could do that... I could handle explosives."
She takes a moment before letting out a shaking breath. "What would you do if they threatened your family?"
"I don't know." Emrys answers honestly enough. "I never had to find out. You weren't so lucky." There's a slow breath out. "You're a damn good pilot, Nova. But don't let your need to make up for what happened get you killed."
There's a long moment of silence from Astraea before she shrugs, finally. "Some of us are gonna die, Hawk. But unlike most folks in th' wing, I don't have anyone waitin' for me to return home." She looks back down, but it's to er feet rather than to the bottle this time. "So if anyone's gonna take those risks, it's better it be me, y'know?"
"Well, yes. Most of us are going to die, Nova." Emrys agrees, staring out at Caprica. "What I really meant, I suppose, was don't...take the risks unnecessarily. Don't die before you have to."
There's a bit of a snort from Astraea as she finally turns from the window to look towards Emrys. "You mean like Cherry? Or Jigger? Or any number of ya Vipers? Th' worst shape I've been in were times I was flyin' th' safest." Well, save one, but she won't say that. "Bein' risky ain't just for you jocks."
Emrys looks away from the planet, back to Astraea. "Fair point, but you know what I meant." He returns finally. "I've been around pilots with something to make up for before, and you're really good. It'd be a shame to lose you before it's time, that's all."
There's a slow draw of breath from Astraea. She's quiet for a time before she lets it out in a sigh, nodding slowly. "I'll try, sir. I'm just... tryin' to focus on my job now. That's what this past week has taught me. That I... just gotta focus on th' job -- th' war -- an' nothin' else."
Emrys nods thoughfully, before glancing out to Caprica again. "You don't have to call me sir, Nova. I know things...haven't exactly been smooth between us since we started walking together, but I promise you I don't think so poorly of you I'd insist you call me sir. Not even close."
"I just didn't wanna make assumptions, si- Hawk," Astraea says finally. "I'm just a jig, so... y'know, just about th' lowest on th' pole 'round here. Don't wanna find myself-" She takes a deep breath, holding that bottle tight as she starts to step away. "Just tryin' to fit in better is all."
"No, I get it." Emrys assures her. "And it's not bad practice at all. But when I first got here, I was told..Wolves don't call each other sir or ma'am, people like Whisper excepted of course." He muses. "And I think for what we do, it's good practice." A pause. "Have you done a bad job of fitting in so far? I mean, aside from our little interactions I haven't seen anything to suggest it. And Cherry clearly thinks well of you." Which seems, by his tone, to go a long way with the man.
"Fly and kill Cylons." Emrys agrees, nodding thoughtfully. There's something in his eye, and the set of his jaw, as he looks back to Caprica. "Nova...a good friend of mine recently pointed out that flying can't be my entire life. And she was right. I'm in my forties, and I can't remember the last time I had a date. I'm having to relearn how to relate to people properly." He holds up a hand, to forestall argument. "I'm not saying don't focus on the job. Mission first, always. And you can tell me you're happy, or that it's not worth trying because it always goes badly, and that's fine. But just...think about it, yeah? And don't grow up to be me, if you make it out of here."
As Emrys explains, Astraea stops and listens. Her shoulders round a bit; almost protectively. She takes in a slow breath. "You can't force things like... datin'. I mean, it's all well an' good, but if th' person you like doesn't like ya back, well... Ain't much you can do. An' pinin' after them an' makin' yerself miserable- we've seen what that does." Look at Banshee. "Focusin' on it would be what causes me problems, Hawk. So instead, I'm givin' up. I'm focusin' on my job instead."
"I didn't mean you had to date. Or force it." Emrys sighs, shaking his head. "Sorry, I'm not very good at this. And yes, I agree, pining after someone can make you miserable." There's a shrug, as he himself gives us. "Focusing on your job is good. Just...don't forget to have a life."
"Havin' a life, or tryin', is what got me into this mess, Hawk." Astraea turns to glance back at the Virgan. "Might be best if I start doin' what others have. Focus on th' war an' relax only when we're on leave. Seems th' safer bet, y'know?"
"Fair enough. Having a life on leave isn't so bad I suppose. Just...don't give it up on it entirely, yeah?" Emrys sighs, looking back at Astraea. "Anyway, Nova, I'll get out of your hair now. Mostly I wanted to smooth things over between us. I do value you, as a squadronmate. I wanted you to know that."
"Of course," Astraea says quietly, unsure what else to say. She takes a deep breath. "I'm... sorry for puttin' that all on you th' other night."
"It's alright. You don't have to apologize. I asked." Emrys murmurs. "I'm the one that should be apologizing. I failed to handle it well, and just made you feel worse. You clearly feel badly enough already." A pause. "I'll see you around, Nova." And then unless she stops him, he'll leave her be.