While waiting for their ships to be prepped for the next assault, Eva and Alain visit Astraea after triage in Cohen AB's sickbay. Plans to ensure she makes it back to the //Dauntless// with the other Wolves (rather than wait a few days) are made.
Location: Cohen Ab Sickbay
Related Scenes: None
Scene Number: 1348
It likely took some guidance from the other Wolves and the Cohen air control themselves to help Weathergirl land. ECOs are trained for it, but they don't do it everyday and certainly not in emergency situations, but Nova was in no shape for it. Banshee was rushed in first and the Scorpian soon after, but not into any form of surgery, thankfully. Just triage to handle the shrapnel and to clean her up. She's in the outer area of the air base's field hospital where she'll get to wait out the next run of the Wolves' assault before she's cleared to hitch a ride back to the Dauntless.
At the moment, the woman is sitting there, flightsuit tied back to her waist, hair matted with blood at one side, holding a styrofoam cup of tea carefully as she stares at the empty bed opposite her with half-lidded eyes. Likely still a touch unsteady. The hospital isn't a quiet place, either; their incoming isn't the only that Cohen's dealing with, it'd seem.
Sticking close to Iris' bus, Jigger lands not long behind the raptor, allowing him to hurry, still in full flight suit -- only slowing to pull off his helmet -- after his wingmate. She's rolled off soon enough, the pilot forced to wait out in the waiting area, where he neatly rolls down his flightsuit to his waist, tucks gloves into his helmet, and then otherwise paces -- only slowing when he sees the Scorpian go in, too, with a muttered prayer under his breath. This probably continues, at least for a while, until Astraea comes out, after which he settles into a seat beside her. She can hear him murmuring, maybe -- mentioning Ares, and Athena and Artemis alike, looking exhausted rather than comforted as he usually does by prayer.
With all of the traffic waiting on the flightline, it's not an immediate turnaround for the Wolves. Most, fortunately, only need refueling, but a few require some minor repairs in order to ensure that they can, not only be capable of returning to the Dauntless, but that they would be fully flight capable should they be redirected in bound to another combat location. And so there's a bit of a lagtime, between when the touch down, and their wounded are carted away, and when they can actually go. And so, what better way to use up that time than to visit on one such individual. "You know, I remember the first time I did this for you, Alain. It was just as nervewracking. You however, were unconscious."
In a way, Astraea might as well be unconscious. She's having trouble focusing. She's not ignoring Alain; she'd never do that. But she just can't focus on the here and now very well. It takes her time to even bring her tea up to take a sip. She finally does before setting it on the table next to her. She's finally taken full notice of Alain's current state and the fact that he's more on edge than calmed by his prayers. She glances -- though it's an unfocused sort of look -- to Eva before leaning over to try to hug the Gemenese pilot. Unfortunately, without full command of her faculties, she's more just leaning heavily on him while she puts her arms around him, but the attempt to comfort is there nonetheless.
Alain's glance flickers up as Eva comes in, smiling ruefully at her words, the tip of head both welcoming and acknowledging at the same time. "It never gets easier. Should never be easy," he corrects himself. "How's it looking out there? Whisper going to round us up soon?" he asks, tensely. He casts another look back at Astraea as he sees her move, exhaling, his arm coming up as much to help steady her as return the hug, one armed. "Frak, Nova. Didn't I tell you to stop crashing? Haven't got enough an in to cover both you and Banshee, the way you two fly," he says, with a wryness that that nonetheless tinged with worry.
Eva doesn't move far into the waiting area, instead leaning against the open door. She'll move, of course, if someone needs to get through, but for the most part she parks herself where she isn't crowding Astraea and Alain, and she can see the hall should an orange-jumpsuited technician come to alert them that the last train to the Dauntles is pulling out of the station, "I think we're alright at the moment, Jigger, I'll make sure you can stay as long as you like. Maybe we'll be lucky and we can get her on the raptor back."
There's a small smile at Alain's words. "Didn't crash," Astraea points out. "Weathergirl made sure of that." She leans against him, not bothering to fight her way back onto the hospital bed and likely savoring the comfort her squadronmate provides. It was a hard fight and there's a certain terror in having your canopy destroyed. They're supposed to be protective. Your armor against everything outside. "An' I'm supposedta protect both of ya. Be yer overwatch an' all. Failed that t'day." She lets out a sigh, looking up and over to Eva. "So we'll all be headin' back? Spent too long in sickbay as it was ta miss another night in my own bunk."
Exhaling, Alain directs a thankful smile to Eva. "I hope so. It seems stupid, doesn't it? The facilities here are probably better than the Dauntless. It just feels like everyone should be there, because it's home." As close to anything the Wolves have, anyway. He grimaces at Astraea's correction, making a noise like a cluck of his tongue as he regards her. "Technicality. Remind me to remind you to bake Weathergirl a cake in thanks, okay?"
"That's the hope, Nova. I don't have much choice on whether or not we leave Banshee here, or so I'm told, but I'll be damned if I'll leave anymore than I have to. So if we can get you back, we're going back, as soon as possible. Most of the days, I don't really think much about the brass I wear, but I will damned well put it to good use today." She chucks a thumb in Alain's direction, "Worse come to worse, I'll have Alain fireman carry you back to the flightline and we'll steal a raptor." She's obviously joking...but sort of not.
"I'll take all th' technicalities I can get," Astraea mumbles in answer, though she manages a small smile. "Guess they were angry I took out one of their heavies quick as I did. Good thing, too, else our casualties woulda been worse." She winces slightly, closing her eyes as she tilts her head against Alain's shoulder. There's a moment of quiet from the woman as she waits for the room to stop spinning. "Trust me, Weather's gettin' a cake. Dun' wanna run outta folks willin' ta fly wit' me." When she's able to look up again, there's a grateful smile for Eva. "I appreciate it, Cherry. Y'all are family. Hell, strap me inta 'bite's Raptor an' I'll ride out th' next fight wit' y'all."
"Been a while since I've flown a raptor, sounds like it'll be fun." Alain is clearly onboard with this plan to abuse rank and steal planes in the name of teamwork. He's chuckling at Eva, giving her a wry smile. "Somehow I doubt Whisper would object." He rubs a hand over his eyes, asking, "You want some more tea, Nova? Cherry?" he glances between them. "Usually I hate drinking it before I strap in, but I think it's going to be a long night, since they're going to send us up again shortly."
Eva says, "That's nice of you, Alain, I wouldn't mind." Eva lens to the side, looking back down along the long hallway, before she returns her attention to the pair in the waiting room that actually go with her unit, and not the other half a dozen or so that don't. "Well, if Whisper doesn't, she can call me to the carpet again. She's got skill, that one. I tell you. But that's nothing for you to worry about. And Nova, we're out there to watch over you just as much as you watch over us. It's not a one-sided thing, you know.""
"More tea would be nice," Astraea agrees, putting her good -- left -- arm to Alain's shoulder to start leveraging herself upright and back into the bed again. At least to sitting against the upright backrest of it. The support is still needed; her head still addled enough from the hit she took that she'll need the full day's rest, at least, before she's walking steadily on her own again. There's a bit of a grin for Eva. "Seen th' way ya fly. An' y'all don't got an ECO wit' as far-reachin' DRADIS. We're yer eyes an' ears out there."
With a pat to Nova's back, Alain eases up onto his feet, making sure Astraea's solid before he steps towards the door. "Won't be long," he assures them, disappearing. It doesn't take him long to come back with three disposable cups of tea -- not the best quality, understandably -- but it's hot. He offers the first to Eva as he passes her coming back, the second to Astraea. "You could do with a little less missile-sponging, I think. It's not just you though -- the other day when they were trying to break through they targeted Iris' bus pretty heavily. I wonder if it's a new tactic they're trying?"
Eva says, "Thank you," Eva offers as Alain, having walked past her to find whatever passes as a drinks station, now returns and hands off a cup to her. She brings it to her mouth, and finding it cool enough to drink, takes a good long swallow, before she lowers it to hold with one hand and support with the other, "Yes, and we are the angels on your shoulders. So we have a job to do as well." A thoughtful look towards Alain, "That could be entirely possible. Target the ships that have the potentially most damaging loadout and the best chance at detecting their approach.""
Accepting the tea once Alain's returned, Astraea doesn't just sit with this cup until it's cold. She holds it just long enough to make sure it's secure before taking a careful sip. "They've got Raptors of their own now. They know their capabilities an' weaknesses." She flashes a bit of a smile towards Eva. "S'why Razor an' I work so well t'gether. He usually spots th' ones on m'tail before I do."
"It wouldn't be any crazier than anything else they've been trying lately," Alain suggests, with a grimace. Once he's handed off two of the cups of tea, he cups his hand around the third's flimsy cup. "Maybe we need to change up our tactics just as much as they. You know, once in a while, try a straight up punch through their line, everyone targeting the heavies straight up, try and take them out in one run, then clean up all the raiders." He shakes his head, tiredly, as he takes a gulp of the tea, glancing towards the door, grimacing.
"You watch most of the older pilots, and that's what they try to do, Alain. But you don't often find pilots who want to focus that way, not vipers, anyway. They tend to want to leave the heavies to the raptors, so that they can go toe to toe with the raiders. And to a point, it makes sense. Most raptors are always going to be carrying heavier ordinance than any viper. Unless they start loading us with missiles too." At Alain's glance, she tips herself sideways to look out and down the hall, "Not yet, but it'll be soon, I think, so we may not have a lot of time to effect this rescue."
"It's not a bad strategy. An' some of us do it. Though I'll take more starts to th' day like today." Astraea's gonna ride her high of taking out a heavy for a while. Not many of them manage it; missiles or no. First shot? She found a weak point or got lucky. Either way, it's something to feel good about. "Mebbe we can talk it out after this assault. Work out a few diff'rent strategies ta try. Could also try spreadin' out more, too. Give 'em fewer groupin's to aim at, 'specially when we're dealin' wit SAMs."
There's the klaxons from the line then that signal go time. Or 'five 'til' as it were. Nova lifts the cup for another gulp before extending her arm towards Alain. "Help me out there, Jigger? Iff'n I'm there, it'll be harder fer Whisper or anyone t'say no."
"Too many experiences with KEW pinging harmlessly off the heavies, I'd bet. But one or two older pilots doing it randomly is different than coordinating an attack like that, if Whisper was calling it." He rubs a hand over his chin, looking wry. "Wouldn't mind a missile or two to take out those heavies, truth be told. I'd happily run distraction the rest of the time." With Eva's words after she glances out the door, just as the klaxons sound, running a hand down his flight suit. "All right. Game faces." He sets his tea down, moving over to give Astraea a steadying arm. "Cherry can play distraction," he adds, with a grin to Eva, as they start to move.
Eva waggles her brows, in Alain's general direction, flashing the man she's known and flow with since the Galactica a broad smile. "You know I can." And with that, Eva too, sets aside her tea, and moves off to start running interference along the corridors. She even takes the time to doublecheck her pins before 'Operation Evacuation' gets underway. And they actually don't do too poorly. One lowly yeoman, a scared Ensign, likely scarred for life, and an incredulous flight crew as Astraea finds herself loaded onto a raptor and the last of the Wolves returning back home to the Dauntless.