2237-08-27 - Interludes, Delphi

Two scenes, one long, one short. Two engineers.

Date: 2237-08-27

Location: RP Room 1

Related Scenes: 2237-08-26 - Save The Museum

Plot: None

Scene Number: 443

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Interlude One

It's been a long night in Delphi. After the museum, the marines were offered a brief respite, before being split up into smaller groups. Now, it's an hour before dawn, and they're clearing buildings, pressing slowly forward. An hour earlier they stumbled onto a Cylon patrol, and after a quick, vicious battle, came up victorious. That victory high didn't last long, however, and now fatigue sets in as they pause to rest in a street. Gage is leaning into one of the doorways, one of his stashed cigarettes being put to good use, the glow of the tip hidden by his cupped fingers and the doorway's angle as he keeps an eye out.

"I need to mark this day on the calendar," comes Abigail's weary voice, as she crosses the foyer of the building the team has been resting in, "I had to look around to see if Davion was around." Well, he was with the team, so he's probably around somewhere. "Also, I think whomever owned this place isn't going to mind if you smoke inside." She pauses, watching the man where he stands, before she goes to pull up a rather battered looking metal chair, the sort that always seem to find themselves in office building waiting areas.

Maybe he's tired, or maybe he's just not on the same wavelength; Gage looks puzzled, giving Abigail a distinctive huh? look at her mention of the other Tauron. It's her latter words that earn a grunt, somewhat amused. "Don't give a crap what some Caprican thinks about me smoking. It's all self preservation. The longer I don't see something glinting off metal, the happier I am." He exhales smoke, gaze swinging back up and down the street.

"I feel that you sort of need to put on your big boy pants about this Caprican thing, Tomak. What happened happened. Who's to blame, if there was anyone, who deserves help, who doesn't, that shit doesn't matter now. We're here, we go where we're needed. Throwing a tantrum because you hate some 'colony' generally isn't going to help anyone. Not you, not me, not any damned person. All it does is make you a real shit to work with." ABigail settles onto the chair, leaning back against the back, but gingerly, as if she needs to test that the thing can still take her weight.

Gage gives her a long look, not quite a scowl, but not too friendly either. "Aint throwing a tantrum. I'm here, aint I? Worked side by side with 'em. Haven't even tried to shoot a one, that's plenty camaraderie." His gaze goes back to the street, as he exhales more smoke. "You gonna lecture some more, if so, might set up a ways across the street," he gestures, vaguely.

"Yes, Tomak, you're here. But this isn't the first time that we've worked together, and you're not here. I've worked with you enough to know the difference. You're angry and resentful, and that's not the man I've gotten to know in the time we've been stationed together and that worries me. I don't know that we're friends, strictly speaking, I don't know that we ever will be. You have to let people in for that. But I do care what happens to you, and that's more than whether or not you take a bullet from an op. Your headspace matters too."

The Tauron keeps smoking, this time not even bothering to look at her. Gage's posture doesn't change much, already stiff where he leans into the doorway. "My headspace is just fine, Staff," he replies, sharply. "You want to send me back to the tin can? Be my guest -- I'll be happy to catch a few z's. Otherwise, leave the frak alone." More smoke is exhaled as he keeps his back to her.

Abigail nods, coming back to her feet, "Thanks for proving my point exactly, Tomak. As for putting you back on the ship, that's not my call." She doesn't both giving the man another look, as she heads back in the direction she came from, further into the building and towards where they've been regrouping before they set out again on the next stretch.

Interlude Two

The building and the safety it provided has long since been abandoned, and the team have set up at what seems to have been something of a combination food establishment of some kind combined wit a laundromat and dry cleaner. Seriously, only on Caprica. Abigail has settled herself in the laundry area, killing time, as one does, by taking inventory of the remaining cleaning chemicals, humming tunelessly to herself as she catalogs anything that might still be useful for the war effort.

Two hours later, the sun is now up. Downside -- it makes sneaking more difficult. Upside -- it's way easier to see the sun glinting off metal. Despite an hour's sleep snatched, tempers are frayed. Gage has run out of both gum and cigarettes, and with no one else in their current team to steal one off, he's even more taciturn than usual. He's settled in the corner of the laundromat, arms folded, sleeping, when the call comes in that there's a patrol passing near.

Abigail looks up, the tilt of her head clear indication that she's hear the call from recon that they've got company incoming. Possibly. She comes up from the kneel she's been in, glancing over towards where Tomak's been sleeping, to see if the call's woken him. But she doesn't head in that direction, instead moving to where they've set up a few of the rolling laundry bins to block the door and the visual of the interior of the building. The beauty of mesh. If you're close, you can see through it, but if you're at a distance, it's nearly opaque, especially with the sun glinting off of it.

After a while, no matter how tired you are, how little sleep you've had, certain things just wake you up. 'Contact' is one of those triggers for Gage, eyes popping open just as Abigail looks his way. There's a grunt from his direction, but not much complaint otherwise as he moves to the other side of the bins, glancing back and forward. There! A glint of light off all-too-familiar chrome. They're moving slowly, back towards the direction the group of marines already came from. Rubbing at his chin, he glances at Abigail, voice pitched low. "If they keep heading south, they're gonna pass over that street with all the cars parked either side." Is she thinking what he's thinking? I mean, probably.

Abigail looks up and over, as Gage moves in to join the viewing party. She glances down along the street as he points out the direction, and then looks back, "You got enough in your load out left? I think I could probably do at least three or more, couple of shaped charges, maybe. Couldn't use up everything, but it might be worth it." She glances down, hands touching this pocket and that, pulling it open to get a handle on what shes carrying. "Might have a bit more in my pack." The day's been long, and they've been busy.

"Maybe," Gage concedes, as to whether he has sufficient explosives left to do the job. "Only one way to find out." This earns a grin, because now it's interesting. "Rest of the team can set up a firing line, in case any of them get by." He leans to pick up his pack, shouldering it quickly and checking over his rifle. "Gotta hustle, if we're going to make it before they get there."

Abigail, making quick work of her equipment check, moves away from the front of the building, heading for the rear door they set up for quick exit, taking the time, as she moves, to make the rest of the team they've been working with aware of the plan, before they move out into the street. She draws back the barrier of an old industrial sink, leaving room enough for them to go out single file, "I'm already there." She'll slip out first, moving to check that they're clear so that Gage can come out behind her.

Gage follows in her wake, checking his equipment even as they move. He's a little slower in squeezing past the sink with his greater bulk, pausing to push it back into place after he's past, before he moves out into the street behind Abigail. He's silent as they move quickly, using hand signals to keep in communication as they move quickly down the street from cover to cover towards their destination.

Abigail, while she does not have Gage's bulk, also does not have the bigger man's skill with stealthy operations, so it comes out in the wash, for the most part, though he also gains the advantage of being longer in his strides. Well, at odds as they are in skill and size, the pair of engineers still manage to make it to the row of cars they had decided on at the laundromat. Abigail pauses, peeking out from behind one of the cars, to ensure that they can't be seen, yet, by the approaching troops, before she dashes across to the other side of the street, setting herself up behind the set of cars opposite where Gage is.

Working in parallel with the other combat engineer, Gage bends to lay charges under the cover of the car, angled towards the middle of the road. It doesn't take long for the rush of an opportunity to one-up the cylons wars with the fatigue of a long twenty-four hours of operations -- the Tauron pausing to rub a hand over tired eyes as he navigates down the cars, bending to set the next charge, glancing across the street to where Walker is and up to where the cylons might be coming from.

Abigail is nothing, if not efficient, as she moves quickly to set the charges, trying to direct the blasts so that they will send the cars towards the center of the street, a sort of, if they're very lucky, improvised anvil that will catch the cylons between then. She, as she said, did not have nearly enough charges to do more than three of the cars well, and with limited time, they'll just need to trust to the rest of the team to finish what they started. By the time she finishes, and she manages to signal Gage as such, she has to give a long moment of thought as to whether or not she can get back on to his side. And in the end, no, and she signals that she's moving further back along her side, to try to find cover from which to detonate her charges.

Gage finishes a few minutes after Abigail. Her signal that she's going to stay on her side of the street earns a grimace, but it's not like he can protest. Instead, he retreats further down his side, finding the cover of a building's doorway to loiter in. With no smokes to keep him busy, he shifts his weight, the hard part of waiting until the targets get into place. The wait feels long -- it always does -- before the first glint of sunlight shines off chrome up the street. Pressing back into the doorway, Gage keeps his gaze not on the cylons, but on Abigail, waiting to time his detonation alongside hers.

Abigail finds her own hiding place, ducking in to what was once someone's pride and joy, a garage that seems to have been filled with tools, though somewhere along the way, the walls have been stripped of most of the ones that might have been useful as improvised weapons. But at the moment, all that matters is that she can get out of line of sight and get herself prepared to detonate the charges. She angles herself, just enough so that she can still see Gage and perhaps he her and then...the wait. As the hear the cylons first, and then seem the marching, farther and farther along the street, deeper and deeer into the anvil. Finally, when they line of them are about as center of the line as they can be, she gives the signal to detonate the charges.

While too well trained to duck his head out more than necessary, Gage hasn't the usual distraction of gum to keep him occupied, and so by the time Abigail gives the signal he looks more relieved than satisfied. He detonates his charges in time with hers, half leaning forward to watch as the cars go tumbling into the patrol of cylons. Three of the centurions toting LMG's get crumpled by the trucks. Two more, badly wounded, fire down the street, but return fire from the other half of their team is soon audible. The whole thing takes less than three minutes, and then there's the aftermath, the creaking and groaning of hot metal and the occasional flecks of ash drifting down from the sky. Gage gives a satisfied grunt, easing slowly out of cover, rifle forward, clearly intent on making sure the cylons stay down, glancing over to take stock of Walker's position as he does so.

There is something so satisfying about a job well done. Especially when that job involves blowing things up. For someone who spent so many years of their career in EOD trying very hard not to blow things up, or at least trying to do so in a controlled manner, murder and mayhem of the explosive variety can be a hell of a lot of fun. So those three minutes...are absolute bliss, and once they get the all clear, she's back on her feet and moving, even as Gage is, to clear the cylons and ensure that they really are nothing more than scrap parts.

The cylons are perfectly still, wrecks of bodies that aren't lit up by trademark red beam -- but still, Gage puts a bullet in the head of the nearest two to him as he passes by, all the same. Some habits are habits for a good reason. Once they've cleared the rest, they head back north to regroup with their team. The erstwhile safety of the laundromat is abandoned as they push further to the city center. It's an uneventful couple of hours until they find a school as their next stop-and-rest. Even though he looks exhausted, Gage is taking the time to empty his pack, assess what he has left, and repack it all in, the contents spread out on the floor where he sits cross-legged. It's always good to know what you have available to you.

"Let me handle that, Tomak," is Abigail's offer, as she too, comes in with her supplies. They're down to fumes now, and even the smallest tool needs to be put to use as creatively as possible. "You could use some sleep. And it's not like I don't know what I'm doing." For all that they each have their own peculiarities, either of them could work out of the other's supply pack without a hitch. "You can still get one of the old exercise mats if you hurry. I don't think they're all spoken for."

"Could say the same of you," Gage comes back, eyeing Abigail. "I caught a nap two stops back. Aint seen you take one." Still, his hands retract -- gesturing as if to allow her to do what she will with the contents of his pack. Instead, he swings his rifle around, dismantling it for cleaning. It's work that can be done when they're exhausted without even thinking, after so many repetitions. As he pulls out a cloth and begins working, he says quietly, "Delphi means a lot to a lot of people. Not just Capricans. Aint gonna fuck it up."

"Probably will, a bit, when we're done. I guess I got used to long shifts from before. Learned to just live with it until I couldn't." With Gage moving away from his pack, Abigail begins to reorganizing it for him, moving everything up to within each reach. If his pack were full, of course, that'd be harder, but now, the key is to make it as easy to grab as possible. "I know you're not. And we've done the best we can to leave it the way we want it to be found. I don't think anyone will fault us for what we did, in the end."

Gage gives a brief grunt at that response as he carefully cleans the barrel of his rifle. "If you keel over later, aint gonna carry you," he warns, landing somewhere between blandly honest and faintly amused. "Kinda getting used to this traveling light thing," now that they've used up most of their supplies. "Kind of like being a civ." Except for the guns, presumably. He gives a nod, presumably agreeing, with her latter statement. He works for a little bit, gaze occasionally flickering towards her organization of his pack, taking stock of where she moves things. "Did you catch the look on Martinez's face when he shot that statue back at the museum? Thought he was going to cream himself. Might've earned himself a callsign at that. Statue-killer's too long. Hm."

"Just roll me down the street ahead of you, and I'll lay out landmines as I go." A grin, from Abigail, as she finishes off the work that Gage began. There's efficiency in his loadout that she seems to appreciate, "It's nice not feeling like a turtle carrying it's house around on its back. Although, if we had been planning properly, wed have been stashing goodies in here as we went. That grocery store we passed a few stops back? Had my favourite brand of franks and beans. Once she's finished with Gage's pack, she turns to her own, "It's crazy right? I mean, maybe it isn't, to you." She's never asked about his religious proclivities, "But it's just...it's not the real thing, you know what I mean? It's nice to look at, but..."

"Sure we can manage to find a reason to swing back past before they raptor us out of here." Whenever that happens -- Gage is too lowly a grunt to have any knowledge on the higher-ups plans. He examines the barrel of the rifle, apparently satisfied, since he starts reassembling the gun. He glances up at Abigail, briefly, the silence that follows finally broken when he says, "A place gets meaning from its people. A home isn't a home without a family."

"You think so? I would have a cookout right there in the raptor on a campstove. You could have a whole can, if you wanted." As if that were a fantastic offer. And not the sort of thing kids do on a camp out when they don't know any better. "I mean, I suppose we could get some real food too, but what's the fun in that?" Finally, her own pack is finished, and she, rather than mirroring Gage, her own SMG neatly tucked in by her pack, moves to take up a few feet on the ground where she was sitting, not bothering to find something more comfortable, using her arms as a pillow, "Yes, that's true. Sometimes what matters the most isn't the place you are, but who you are with. With the right people, you can make a home anywhere. When they're not there, no where will ever be home."

Gage gives a grunt as he finishes with his rifle, setting it by his side, before he replies, "You can have it all to yourself. I'll take the egg and bacon instead." Someone's not a fan of cookouts. After a moment, the Tauron tugs his pack back towards him. One or two checks confirm the various items are in the places he expects, before he uses it as a makeshift pillow. Maybe he doesn't think her words need any response, or just as likely, like any good marine he can fall asleep just about anywhere, his eyes closed, breathing evening out almost immediately.

Abigail doesn't seem to need a reply or expect one, and once she sees and hears Gage settle in for the short sleep, she follows his lead, replacing her arms with her pack, settling herself in such a manner that she can cover him, and he her, should something come upon them. Her SMG she pulls close against her chest, so that she will not have to reach for it if the need arises. Just before she sleeps, she reaches her hand into the collar of her battle dress, pulling out her dog tags. There are two sets there. One, the ones issued by the CF, and another set, which, it might be noted, are in the style of the ones used by the Caprican troops they've been working with. Her hand curls around the second sets of tags before she too, drifts off to sleep.


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