2237-09-08 - Tarmac Talk

Pilots gather on the tarmac after a training exercise with the Caprican Navy

Date: 2237-09-08

Location: Argyros Naval Air Station

Related Scenes: 2237-09-08 - Intercept Course

Plot: None

Scene Number: 493

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When the 'RTB' is called out, Astraea quickly finishes off her sandwich and hops to her feet from her pilot's couch. She stretches, tossing own her helmet behind her. Her part of the post-flight check is already done and she hands off the clipboard to Pitbull on her way out. "Catch ya later, 'bull." The hatch is opened and the Scorpian pilot steps out on the Raptor's wing, shielding her eyes against the Caprican sun to watch the rest of the flight as they make their way in to the tarmac.

Elena lands her Viper and pops the canopy as the ground crew roll up with the ladder and set to checking the machine over and removing the skirmish gear from it. She hands a tech her helmet before she climbs down and unzips the top of her flightsuit to get some air circulating. She speaks with the techs for a few moments, smiling, possibly knowing them from her time there.

Emrys will be one of the last ones to touch down, watching the flight settle in before he himself puts his viper down. When he does land, he just sits there for a moment before popping his canopy. Finally, he removes his helmet and climbs out to begin the post-flight.

After successfully landing without a hitch, Alain jumps out of the viper, pausing to chat with one of the Dauntless' deck crew. Given it was a mock battle and therefore the viper is flawless, it's a lengthy conversation, the pair finally shaking hands as the Gemenese pilot tucks his helmet under his arm, folding gloves and setting them inside as he crosses the tarmac towards the base, headed for Astraea's raptor. "He saw you land early," Alain reports, wryly, as he nears. "Seems I owe him and his friends a round of beers."

The unpopular redhead also brings the ship down, her head leaning back as the post-flight self-check of the ship runs quickly and then the cockpit opens. She takes off her helmet and hands it to the technician, "Than.." Her eyes widen only a moment as the Caprican technican takes it and walks off with out talking to her. A soft exhale as she slowly gets out, and takes out the clipboard to ensure all the checks are done appropriately. She comes down from the ladder. Her eyes going to those around her as she pushes off. It was possibly going to be a long night for Verity - She makes her way towards Emrys' starfighter though.

"I'll handle our post flight, Irene, if you want to join the others." Paige offers up a smile as she reaches for the clipboard on the side of the ECO station to start running down the operationial checklist for shutdown and preparing the sim gear for removal.

Hopping own from her wing to angle up and meet with Alain as he heads for her Raptor, Astraea lets out a long sigh as she falls into step wth the Gemenese pilot. "It wasn't even a real combat. We really need to work on yer terms of bets, Jigger. There ain't a real scratch on her." She tuts. "I think ya lost out on drinks for poor reasons." She's grinning all the same, leaning out to link her arm through his. "I'll toss a few cubits your way. You deserve it for gettin' Mittens to use th' name on herself out there. That was good work." She does squint back up to the sky, frowning. "I dunno why I keep gettin' hit in th' canopy lately. Never did 'til we got to Caprica. I feel frakkin' cursed."

Elena breaks off from the techs and heads towards the rest of the pilots. "Nice work out there, everyone. We might not want to go to any bars solo for a while though. I think we hurt a few egos today."

Irene puts the raptor down nice and gentle. Well, as gentle as one can land a raptor. Then it's the usual routine, power off and post flight checks. The raptor took only one simulated hit, and it was but a scratch, so it shouldn't be a traumatic affair. "It's fine, mum. I'll do my part." So she does, going over everything in the cockpit before unfastening and peeling herself off the seat. After pulling off her helmet and rubbing her eyes, she has a yawn that she tries to talk through. She makes no kind of sense, so has to start over, "Are you still irritated?"

Emrys pauses in his post-flight when he senses Verity approaching. "Ensign." He greets, turning to look at her. He has to be a little irritated, since he greeted her by her rank, but on the other hand he's not yelling at her either. "How can I help you?"

"It was a fine bet," Alain disagrees, with a cluck of his tongue, "You weren't supposed to get hit. Besides, you'd have been upset if I'd bet against you, right?" he guesses, with a rueful grin. He looks pleased at her reminder about the new callsign, glancing towards Verity as she walks towards Emrys. "I'll take them," he allows. "Did I hear you trying to call Hawk Puppy? Not sure if it caught on in quite the same way." He uses the arm linked through Astraea's to tug her in the direction of the other pilots. "Good work," he echoes Elena's words, though he looks surprised by her latter. "You really think they'll take that personally?" he asks, frowning briefly in thought.

"I'm good, Irene." Though the clipped tone from the Caprican ECO suggests that she may not be fully. "You know, they've been doing the same thing we have. Maybe not all over the damned colonies, but still.." Paige shrugs her shoulders, and after a moment, seems to center herself. "Words don't hurt." There's a glance towards her console and she starts to run down the list with Irene for the shutdown.

Verity's hand comes behind her as she opens her mouth to speak to Emrys. She pauses as she hears Elena and turns slightly as other pilots apparently are congragating. She takes another breath and speaks up a little more then before, "I'll be happy to take disciplinary action for causing bad blood. Public or not." She says slowly, "The Cylons don't hesitate to use every advantage against us. Our biology, our necessities, our emotions. If this was meant to strengthen our abilities - then they should be prepared for every advantage." There's a slow beat, "And it does show a weakness in the Caprican Defense Fleet as Nails got himself killed because I got under his skin." She glances at the ground with a frown, before looking to Emrys, "I'll personally apologize to the Caprican CAG - if you feel it appropriate."

"But I would suggest a consideration of why what I did was useful.." a slight shrug.

"I would've been very upset," Astraea agrees. "I appreciate th' confidence in me, even if it's unfounded. 'Least 'til we're off Caprica. Mebbe wait 'til we're on a colony that doesn't hate me so much, yeh?" There's a pat to Alain's arm with her other han before he's pulling her along. "I'm workin' th' long game with Montjoy. Dunno how long he's been called Hawk. Gotta take it slow." She purses her lips a bit in thought at the bar idea before shrugging. "Mebbe jes' make sure we go out in groups. An' that none of us throw th' first punch if they do try to start anythin', y'know? Don't wanna be thrown in th' brig. But I think we can all hold our own."

"They're Capricans. We take everything personally," Elena quips with a wink towards the two pilots. She looks towards Hawk to give him a nod before she excuses herself. "I'm going to hit the showers and get some rack time. I have a duty shift early."

Irene cracks the hatch and lets all the stale air out and the sunshine and hot tarmac aroma radiate in. She stands in the opening, putting her hand to brow to shade her eyes so she can see who is where in the row of CF vipers. With no brawl transpiring, she doesn't rush out to join in, but simply walks out onto the wing for a stretch of her arms. "Just words." She agrees, even if there's an addendum, "But a little respect goes a long way." Then she puts her helmet back under her arm and hops down to the ground.

Emrys returns Elena's nod, before looking back to Verity with a deep sigh and a shake of his head. "There's some merit in what you say. However, I suspect the cylons are unlike to ever communicate with us in such a manner. There's nothing to suggest they understand emotion." He speaks slowly, deliberately. "And I understand that they did start it, with the talk of sending us for a swim. That being said, I would have suggested leaving aside the Colony specific digs. We're all in this together, now. There are Capricans in the Wolves, and while we've put aside our petty squabbles for the war effort people haven't stopped identifying with their homes. Nor will they ever." Another shake of his head. "I'll be considering disciplinary action, but ultimately the responsibility is mine for not exercising stricter command authority. I'll be the one apologizing to the Caprican CAG." He doesn't look at all like this is a thought he relishes.

It takes more time than usual for Ines to sort things out, because she's more or less at the mercy of the technicians. Not only are all of these specific vipers new to her, so were almost all of the pilots. Procedures vary just enough between her old unit and this one to matter.
She does eventually break free, though, and wanders toward the lingering knot of other Wolves, helmet dangling from the fingers of one hand.

Alain frees his arm from Astraea's as he unzips his flight suit and rolls it down, carefully and neatly, to his waist. He glances towards Verity and Emrys, though doesn't interrupt their exchange, even if it's clear he's listening to their exchange. He gives a nod in farewell to Elena, briefly, before grimacing. "I don't think it's that bad, is it?" he asks Astraea, baffled. "Doubt they'll throw down with the Wolves, not after we helped with Delphi." When Ines approaches the group, he gives her an easy nod. "Kestral, wasn't it? Jigger," he offers, along with his hand. "Good to have you aboard."

Verity doesn't say anything during Emrys' entire words and speech. Though as he speaks on 'Colony Specifics' her face goes from somber to somewhat unreadable. It would seem that there could be a nerve there, though it easily falls back in line. Her head dips, "Sir, Yes Sir. I appreciate your time." She glances to Alain and smiles at him briefly. Another deep breath, "Well.. I have an early shift to." A soft chuckle, ".. Patrol with a few Caprican counter parts. I'm sure we'll have a good time." She dips her head, "Sir." She also nods to Alain and the others who show up - before turning and beginning to make her way out.

"It wasn't that, Irene." Paige says finally. "I get it. You know. Caprica made the Cylons. Hell, my family made them. It's just.." she finds herself unable to find words, for one of the few times in her life. "I try to show everyone nothing but respect." she shrugs. "Just forget every once in a while." Rising from her seat, she casts Irene a smile and gives her a quick shoulder hug. "I know a place where they have the best wine in the city, from all the colonies, and they serve it on these some of these local and colony-specific chartcuterie boards. I'll have to show you some time." she offers before she's moving to climb down from the Raptor to turn in the reports.

As Jigger unzips his flight suit, Astraea pulls off her gloves and shoves them in the pockets of her own, "Nah. I doubt they'll do much more'n grouse at us. Wouldn't look good, y'know? They lost. An' if they did send us some of their best, pickin' fights off th' field only makes 'em look worse. Doubt they wanna do that, y'know?" She gives a nod to Ines as she approaches. "Settlin' in alright?" Having been one of the first to meet the new pilot, upon her arrival. She tugs at the zipper of her own flight suit as Emrys and Verity finish their conversation. "Sorry I didn't evade that hit early on, Puppy. Seems my cockpit's a popular target for more'n jes' th'Cylons."

One of the few faces Ines recognizes is Astraea's, so when the man with her introduces himself, she shares her quick smile with both of them. "Hey, Nova! So far so good. Thanks again for showing me where I needed to go." And for Alain, "That's right; that's me. Jigger? It's nice to put a face to the name." Her handshake is firm for someone of her physical description -- like it belongs, or was bred, in a board room. There's still a flush in her cheeks, and her eyes are bright as she glances between the two. "What a display, hm? You get to do this kind of thing often?" Pause. "I mean, we? Do we get to do this kind of thing often?"

"See you, Mittens," Alain throws easily after Verity, his gaze tracking her for a moment before flickering back towards Emrys, his expression thoughtful. "Good to know," he says to Astraea, with a wry sort of smile. "Haven't had a chance to hit up many of the local bars -- I snuck home when they offered up a leave pass earlier in the week. Too good an opportunity not to take." He chuckles as Ines corrects herself to 'we'. "We get to do some training bouts, nothing as intense as that usually -- it's different once you get to know the squadron, how they all fly. It's easier to anticipate who'll fly aggressively and take advantage of that, but it's much harder when they're relative strangers." His brow furrows, briefly. "Is that a Leonis accent?" he guesses.

Paige gets a squinty face of dramatic seriousness from Irene, just a little hamming. "I think we're good then? I mean, well. Only dumbasses would think Capricans as a whole were responsible for all this." She'll give up with a shrug and smile that stupid pretty smile of hers to paper over the lack of more words. There's another yawn to cover and after a quick arm squeeze she starts to stroll off. "We're on for fancy wines, and we still have the dance party yet." Nose tap.

"Flameout." Emrys inclines his head in response to Verity departing. As the woman walks off he shakes his head and turns back to his bird. He's clearly distracted and elsewhere in his thoughts, so when he becomes aware Astraea is speaking to him he just answers. "It's alright, Nova. Exactly as you say...they, more than the cylons, know exactly what you're packing. Little wonder they targeted you so precisely." A pause. "..did you just call me Puppy?"

"Oh totally. It's going to be my birthday, so I will totally treat." Graystone funds still have to be good for something after all. Paige gives a tap of her own nose in response and smiles at the blonde before the ECO heads on her own way.

"Trainin' like this? Not really. We're usually pretty busy actively engagin' with th' toasters. This has been pretty diff'rent, really." When Alain mentions that he took one of the passes to visit home, Astraea looks over to him with a slight tilt of her head. "Family good? Y'didn't happen to pick up more of that wine, didja? I was hopin' to get to try some. Oh! An' books." She's distracted for the moment, peppering the poor Gemenese pilot with questions. It's not until Emrys' last query that she comes back to the moment and just sort of smiles at the Virgan; almost serenely. "Did I? Didn't even notice." Lie.

Disappointment registers as a subtle note in Ines' general enthusiasm, but it's fleeting. "Like my old unit, then. It's true, it's not really the same." Though, really, it will be for Ines, at least for a while. Until she learns the quirks and habits of the people standing around her on the baking tarmac, anyway.
What she isn't expecting is the last question, and it sends her brows up. "Ah? It is." The cast of her smile changes, widening, wry with challenge and curiosity. In Leonese: "You're a speaker?"
She's not oblivious to the byplay between Nova and -- that's Hawk, right? It sounds like Hawk. Her study of him is curious, but politely removed.

"It was only a day's pass -- didn't even get a chance to visit anywhere but the family home, I'm afraid. If you're after something specific though, I can get them to send it on easily enough," Alain answers Astraea easily. There might be a brief cough from Alain at Emrys' question of Astraea. "Kind of suits you," Jigger throws in, oh-so-casually, a completely unrepentant grin visible. Ines is given a nod of satisfaction as he's confirmed correct. "I have a bit of an ear for accents, that's all." His slight tip of head suggests he doesn't understand her question in Leonese, however.

Birthday? Irene will have taken a mental note of that, obviously, the way she 'ohs' in Paige's wake. Very interesting. The suprise face turns into a serene-ish expression as she turns and strolls by the pilots still lingering, offering a lifted hand and a smile as she goes. Then she's off.

"Kind of suits me?" Emrys looks over to Alain. "In what way, pray tell, do I resemble a puppy?" There's a pause, as the man considers some of the possible answers. "You know what, you don't have to answer that." He's aware he's being politely studied, and gives Ines a nod of acknowledgement.

<<I speak little,>> Astraea responds to Ines, in a rough Scorpian accent. It's almost a pidgin form of Leonese, but it's Leonese all the same. Seems she understood, at least. For Alain's sake, she leans his way a bit: "She asked if y'speak Leonese." There's a nod and a wave for Paige and Irene as they begin their way off the Tarmac. "Well, we'd talked 'bout more books on religion. Didn't know if ya managed t'pick any up while y'were there. Even if they were in Gemenese. At this rate, yer gonna have to start teachin' me how to read it myself."

To Emrys, she chimes in: "We think it suits ya quite well."

Smiles seem to come easily for Ines. One beat of eye contact with Emrys is enough to pull another one out of her. Stoic right-stuff stereotype she is not. She's also, probably wisely, opting to stay out of this Puppy thing.
She's just about to explain to Alain, waving off his head-tilt with something halfway between amusement and apology, when Astraea pipes up. Soft green eyes widen, and Ines squeaks. Doesn't look self-conscious about that, either. One gets the feeling whoever she used to be would have turned that moment into a 'did we just become best friends? hug.
Mercifully, that doesn't actually happen.
"It's good! Very good." It's not. But she's overjoyed to hear a little piece of home, anyway.

"Well, you're--" Alain was totally going to answer that, at least until Emrys waves him off, and then he grins, gives a flicker of fingers, and doesn't persist. Of langagues, he says, "I'd love to learn -- one day. But I have my hands full trying to get a hold of Sagittaran, as is." He misses the departure of the other raptor pilot and ECO, glancing at them after they've passed by. "Thought I gave you plenty of books to keep you going while you were in the medbay?" he answers Astraea with a grin. "Happy to source more for you, if you're caught up on them."

"I appreciate your mercy." Emrys tells Alain gravely, though with a line like that he can't be entirely serious. Eventually, his curiosity will surely get the better of him. Hopefully when not as many people are around.

"Good 'nough for Scorpia. Not for Leonis." Astraea knows this much. She also knows the type of Leonese spoken in the streets of places like Argentum Bay is vastly different than would be spoken on Leonis proper. Still, she seems largely nonplussed and is happy enough to have made Ines happy. For Alain there's a small shrug. "Quick to go through books when ya mostly can only look at th'pictures." Seeing as how they were in Gemenese. "Maybe help me find some books on learnin' Gemenese and we'll go from there, yeah?"

"Good enough for me." Ines lifts her helmet in order to cradle it with one arm, and hesitates a moment before indulging herself. Scorpian is apparently included in the handful of languages she knows fluently. Fluently enough to sound a bit arch: "It's better Leonese from a Scorpian than I've heard Scorpian from most Leonese."
But it's rude to chatter in foreign languages when you don't know who speaks them, so her wryness dulls to something more rueful. "Gemenese, that one I'm still working on, myself. Let me know if you do wind up with any." Beat. She half-pivots, angles a gloved thumb over her shoulder toward the hangar interiors. "I'm going to change, I think, but it was good to meet you. Good flying with you both."

Frowning, Alain admits to Astraea, "I'm not sure there is one. It's basically only a language used by priests or scholars these days. I could write out some crib notes, though -- letters, common words and such." He doesn't understand the exchange of words, brow furrowed, and after a moment, he straightens. "Well, off to the showers for me. Catch you all later," he says, lifting a hand as he double-times it into the shade and to his normal post-flight rituals.

Emrys offers nods of farewell to those departing, looking down at his post-flight checklist one last time. One final mark, and it's all done. He leans against his bird, then, surveying the tarmac.

There's a long look for Ines when she begins speaking Scorpian. Enough to show that oh, yes, Astraea understands. She both understands and is made somewhat uncomfortable by it. The woman stiffens a bit and leans back a few steps. She looks over to Alain and offers a half-smile. "Anythin' you can give me, yeh? Mebbe an' easier book so I can begin' learnin'. Some of th' ones you gave me when I was in sickbay looked interestin'. I'd love to be able to actually read 'em without you havin' to translate th' whole time, y'know?" But her words wobble slightly and she just takes a deep breath, finally turning to quickly head off the tarmac herself.

Well, that isn't the reaction she was expecting. The easy smile flickers like a bulb on a faulty circuit, and Ines watches Astraea take her hurried leave. She's too canny a student of human behavior not to understand she's just stuck her foot in something, but lack of knowing what leaves her looking puzzled and a little contrite. Now, though, is not the time. She lifts her hand in one last gesture of parting, and then heads off to see about lockers, hot water, and mess.


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