The search party finds Emrys, but not quite in the way they'd hoped.
Location: Somewhere On Sagittaron
Plot: Operation: Watchtower
Scene Number: 1438
It’s been a few days since Hawk was shot down, and he hasn’t returned. Patrols have been sent out looking for him, but no one has found any trace of him. Lucky you, you’re a part of the latest team to be sent out in search of him: a Raptor pilot to shuttle you there, a couple of Recon for their skills at... you know. Recon. A medic, in case Hawk is injured. And then a couple of privates to round things out, and a sergeant to call the shots. (Is there a bit of red in a few of those shirts? Nah, must be your imagination.)
You’ve all been briefed on the mission. Go out, search for evidence of what happened to Hawk, bring him home if you can. Now everyone has packed into the Raptor and it’s time to get going. Sergeant Smith is characteristically reserved, focused on the mission at hand, but the two privates have been engaging in a bit of banter. Apparently there's a friendly wager on who will be the first to knock out a Cylon if they see action on the mission. The loser has to buy the winner a pack of gum. It may be an 'in' joke, but it's probably not as funny as they think it is.
Lyn is a tracker, so she was an easy pick for this type of mission. She's also napping in a corner, as per usual. It may be a Recon thing, as she and Charlie always seem zonked out en route in the Raptors. The woman has her helmet tugged down low over her eyes, and her rifle cradled in her arms as she snoozes.
Cate is not zonked out. In fact, the medic is fidgeting a little with the strap on her SMG. She glances towards the front now and again trying to peer out the front windshield even though she can't see much from the bench.
It's not uncommon for Astraea to fly SAR. And she came damn close to breaking away to go after Hawk when his Viper went down as it was. So you bet she's been keeping on every shred of information that's cropped up about the Virgan pilot. What little has been released to the rank and file, that is. Even if little has gotten back to the Dauntless. The pilot is on edge, but she's been working through breathing exercises ever since they left the ship and made their way to the planet's surface. @emit It's not uncommon for Astraea to fly SAR. And she came damn close to breaking away to go after Hawk when his Viper went down as it was. So you bet she's been keeping on every shred of information that's cropped up about the Virgan pilot. What little has been released to the rank and file, that is. Even if little has gotten back to the Dauntless. The pilot is on edge, but she's been working through breathing exercises ever since they left the ship and made their way to the planet's surface. Her ECO -- not Pitbull, this time -- is on edge, herself, but perhaps not quite so much as the pilot. Neither is engaging in banter with the marines, but that's not abnormal.
Bailey isn't actually asleep, so to some extent she's spoiling the trend that Lyn and Charlie have begun -- but she does look pretty tired. Counter to safety, she has her knees pulled up to her chest and is resting her chin on them, watching everyone else through semi-hooded eyes. Mostly the two privates, who are providing a show. Being one of the relative newcomers, she's keeping her opinions to herself, too. For now. For a little while.
Lyn shifts and rests her head on Cate's shoulder with a sleeping grumble. Sorry Cate, you sat in the wrong spot.
"Hey, newbie," one of the privates addresses Bailey. "Which one of us do /you/ think deserves a nice pack of gum?" He's wearing a half grin to suggest there's some ulterior motive to the question. His partner tries to keep a straight face, but can't help a half-choked laugh, and elbows the first guy in the ribs.
"Cabin, this is yer pilot speakin'. If you look out to yer right, you'll see a whole lotta nothin'. To your left, a whole lot more." Sadah isn't the most attractive of landscapes. The mountains might not be so bad, for some, but it's still a lot of same-same all over the place. Astraea follows this up with: "Comin' in for a landin'. Might wanna wake up the kids." AKA the nappers. She flips a few switches and the thrusters adjust, bringing them to a more vertical alignment once she's located a good spot in the pre-determined landing zone near where the Viper had been marked as crashing in. It doesn't take long to settle down and it's at least a relatively smooth landing. Somewhat bumpy considering the landscape, but just a bit of scree beneath the struts as the bird settles. The ECO is unstrapped first, hitting the hatch to open it and allow the arid air to flood the cabin.
Cate gives the sleeping Lyn an arched eyebrow when her head flops over, as if to silently say really?. The question from the privates causes her to say dryly. "That sounds like a lose-lose question." When Astraea says they're landing, she elbows Lyn gently. "Lyn, wake up."
Hazing, honest question, or some level of both? Bailey only looks very slightly wary as she considers the two privates; there's a little bit of a wicked brightness in her eyes as she makes her decision. "You," she tells the one who spoke up, "because you had the nerve -- of whatever sort -- to ask in the first place." And then she's too busy white-knuckling the edges of her seat, always overprepared for an even bumpier landing than ever happens.
Lyn grunts and wakes up at the elbowing. She tips her helmet back and rubs at her eyes for a moment before she murmurs a quiet, "Thanks Cate" to the medic. She cracks her neck and back and checks her rifle once more.
"I don't know how you and Wagner can sleep on the ride in," Cate remarks with a frown and a little headshake. Once the Raptor has settled, she's unstrapping herself and grabbing the medic backpack that usually travels tucked behind her shins.
A combination of Lyn's and Bailey's answers leave both privates guffawing, until Smith clears his throat and gives a quiet but firm, "All right boys, that's enough." Both privates snap to attention, but they're still smirking, and as they unstrap, the first guy eyes Bailey up as though wondering if he should act on her double-entendre at some later date. Due to the way people are seated, the sergeant and two privates will be the last to disembark. "Let's get a move on, people," Smith snaps. "We've got a pilot to bring home."
It takes a moment longer for Astraea to finish her post-flight checks, but the pilot soon surfaces from the cockpit. She grabs, from not far behind the seat, an SMG. Something she's made part of her own bird's loadout since that time she was shot down on Picon. She's not felt comfortable with just her sidearm since then. "Sergeant, I'm comin' wit' ya. He's one of th' wing's own. Th' ECO can keep 'er warmed up for us." The idea of just sitting idly by doesn't sit right. Could also be the times she has sat back with her Raptor and its been used for target practice by Cylons. Six of one, half dozen... She follows the crowd off the ship after checking the weapon; suited to following marine orders on the ground. The pilot way of life. They know the sky, grunts know the ground.
"Dunno why Charlie does. For mw the engine sound is soothing, and the nap lets me decompress so I can clear my head for the mission, rather than overthink it and make myself nervous," Lyn explains to Cate. She gets up and nods to the Sarge before hopping out and crouching beside the Raptor to cover the others.
"I can see how it could be," Bailey is saying to Lyn's explanation about the engine's soothing rhythm as she gets the move on she's been ordered to get. Her fluid movements turn a little more cautious than normal as she watches where her feet are landing as much as where everyone else is going, double-checking that her weapons are where they should be. As if they'd have moved.
Cate shrugs at Lyn, but then she's busy frowning at Astraea's declaration that she's coming with them. She looks to the sergeant though, rather than raising the obvious objections.
The ECO stays put while Astraea decides to crowd off the raptor. Sergeant Smith scowls at that. Some people might be aware that he's (off-camera) notorious for being a stickler for the rules. "Lieutenant Masters--" he starts, but he doesn't get a chance to finish that sentence. Just as Astraea's feet hit the ground behind Cate, there's a short whistling sound. "Get down!" Smith barks, just as a rocket impacts the side of the raptor, sending shrapnel in every direction.
Lyn arches a brow at Astraea as well. Because pilots aren't exactly known for being stealthy, or good at ground combat, and that could make her a liability. But then there is that telltale whistle. She knows that sound. She heard a hell of a lot of it the day Aquaria fell. She makes a running dive as far from the ship as she can, rumbling into the dirt and rolling into a tight ball. The detonation goes off and she feels hot shrapnel peppering one of her legs, slashing through parts of her armor to gouge some shallow cuts into her skin. One or two are deep enough to probably require a bandage, and a tendon is not happy at all. She's going to need some help being mobile.
There's a set to Astraea's jaw that says she's about to argue, but she doesn't get the chance. That whistle? That is part of why she wanted off the thing in the first place. She knows. She's been on the thing when that happens before. The pilot does hit the deck but a section of panel lands on her in the aftermath. The jig is still for a time, catching her breath; not unconscious, thankfully; just stunned. She finally leverages that sheet of metal off of her with her shoulder and is clutching at her right hand with her left, holding it against her abdomen. There's a fair bit of blood and she's biting into her lower lip. "Frak's sake," she mutters, looking to the wreckage. "I was doin' so well, too."
Bailey heard that noise as quick as it is possible for a noise to be heard, and so she moved right when the Sergeant gave the order -- but unfortunately that's not enough to save all of her. She's tall and it takes her a little bit too long to duck; a piece of shrapnel makes hard contact with her helmet and she crumples further, wrapped in a ball as she lets out whispered expletives too soft for anyone to make out exactly what they are. When she speaks in an audible tone, it's just to say "ow," in a frustrated tone and then press her eyes shut. "And closing my eyes does nothing about the stars," is added with a sigh.
Cate dives to the ground when she hears the sergeant's warning, covering her head. She takes a few scrapes from shrapnel, but nothing major. Her armor and backpack took the brunt of the damage. Ears ringing, she comes up on one knee and takes quick stock of the people down. It's the ones in the now-burning Raptor that seem most in dire need of help though. "Sarge! Kai!" She starts calling names, keeping her weapon at her side as she tries to get in to pull out anyone who's still breathing.
Lyn groans as she unfolds herself from her curled position. She puts a hand over the worst of the bleeders on her leg and curses mightily. She undoes one of her belts and ties it tightly around her thigh over the worst wound. "We need to MOVE away from the bird!" she shouts, struggling to her feet and limping towards Bailey to try and help the other Recon marine to her feet. She can feel that leg threatening to give out with every step.
The Raptor... or rather, what's left of it, is unstable enough to shift alarmingly when Cate tries to climb in. It's clear that if she continues, she's going to get herself injured, and from what she can see, there are only lifeless bodies inside anyway. There's also a glow of fire, suggesting it may go up in flames at any moment. Worse still, they have another problem. There's a familiar whir and clunk of Centurions on the approach, and anyone who looks in that direction will spot a group of five approaching from the north, where they had apparently been in hiding in some sort of shelter that blends perfectly with the monotonous terrain. Is this just bad luck? Or did the Cylons plan this out and camp likely landing spots to intercept rescue parties? The world may never know! The Centurions aren't stopping to answer any questions, that's for sure. Bullets spray the area around the survivors, kicking up plumes of red dirt, and punching holes in what's left of the Raptor. So far, no one is hit.
Getting away from aircraft on fire sounds good to Bailey; as soon as Lyn's presence offers her enough steadying to get her standing, roles are quickly reversed and she's offering an arm to help her sergeant walk, or at least remain upright lest any leg-buckling happen. "Here, let me --" help was probably the rest of that, but she's back to ducking and pressing her eyelids shut (though not ending up back on the ground!) at the assault of gunfire. The instinctive bodily cringe reaction combined with the start of concussion reacting poorly to the further onslaught of sound has Bailey standing still again, but it won't last longer than a couple of seconds at most.
Taking a shaking bread, Astraea pushes herself upright with her left (good) hand, keeping her right pressed to her body. "She's right," she says of Lyn's words. "Tyllium ain't gone yet. It might not, but it could." She's removed her helmet, due to the heat coming off the wreckage. It's clutched in her left hand for now. It's too stifling in the desert to wear. "We gotta get clear. It's jes' gonna draw attention. Anyone got a radio?" She just has the helmet comm. It won't get very far. And indeed, there's the Centurions. She swears when those bullets spray around them and the Raptor, to grab at her SMG. It's difficult, with her hand the way it is. Between the blood and how damaged said hand is; she's not doing well. "Th' boulders," the pilot gasps out. "Over there." She's already moving because the way the Centurions are shooting isn't good for the ship. Or their small group. She tries firing back, but it's a very sloppy spray-n-pray and not just because she's a pilot. It's the state of her hand at the moment.
Lyn has to hang on to Bailey like a crutch now that the leg has decided it's had enough, thankyouverymuch. That leaves a hand free and she pulls out the pistol on her hip to fire back at the Centurions. She follows Astraea's gaze and nods. "Doc! 3 o'clock!" That spot to their west she begins urging Bailey towards.
Undaunted by the perilously-shifting Raptor, Cate nevertheless gets up on the wing and gets partway in before being turned back by a wall of flame. Arm held up to shield her face, she coughs and tries to peer through the smoke and fire. Her hand touches the side of the hatch-frame, which is hot. She jerks her hand back, hissing, "Shit!" One more round of desperate names is called out, but no one can be seen stirring inside the Raptor. Then the bullets start flying. A burst clangs off of the top of the hatchway, just over her head, and Cate ducks and scrambles down off the exposed wing. She joins the others in the retreat, firing short controlled bursts of covering fire as she brings up the rear.
A bullet ricochets off the Raptor while Astraea is standing there with helmet in hand. She feels the wind of it as it passes by her ear. As for the rest of the team, they seem to be getting lucky, too. In fact, it's almost strange how poor the Centurions' aim seems to be, today. None of the shots have struck closer than a foot or two away from any of the soldiers... though that's still too close for comfort. Some of the return shots fired hit some of the Centurions and ricochet off, but none of them go down. A piece of one's face/mask/whatever is blown off, exposing electronic innards that somehow make it even more unsettling, as it just keeps marching in pursuit. It's clear as the marines (and one pilot) retreat that Lyn is not going to be able to move fast enough to get to cover before the Centurions catch up, even with Bailey's help.
But Bailey is going to try her damndest. She makes for a pretty good crutch, though, trying her best to match her step and let Lyn do a little bit of the walking herself but also provide both support and enough speed to get them to cover -- Bailey isn't firing, since she's focusing on moving and not getting shot. Some of those expletives are coming out a little more loudly than before. It's bitter muttering.
There's no sense of 'luck' in Astraea's mind. Not wth the state of her hand at the moment. She's feeling too much panic right not as she runs for that small sliver of cover that can be seen in Sadah's wasteland. She's barely got hold of gun or helmet at the moment and once she does reach those boulders, she drops the helmet to get a better hold of the SMG to try to provide some suppressive fire towards the Centurions for the others as they head for her position. "C'mon, c'mon!"
Lyn is gonna hop her arse off, dammit! Hop hop hop hop. They don't train you to hop in the marines people! She shoves at Bailey, "Go! No sense in two of us getting shot!" She hisses.
"I do not -- " Bailey falters; Lyn outranks her and Bailey has no real excuse to disobey. That doesn't mean she has to like it, and so her expression is sour but she does as she's told, gently-but-quickly- letting Lyn shift her weight off her and into her own control (maybe she'll pick up some real good hopping skills?) before taking off at a good run. Which doesn't stop her from glancing over her shoulder to make sure the other marine isn't getting killed. Dizziness is definitely welling up behind her eyes from that whomp in the head, but she's too singularly focused on following Astraea to let it get to her. She'll vomit later.
And yet, it's not getting shot that they have to fear, it turns out. This becomes especially clear as the Centurions reach point-blank range and still fail to hit Lyn, Bailey, or Cate.
The Centurions split off at this point, three heading directly for the women who haven't yet made it to cover, and the last two heading for the boulder where Astraea has taken cover, which just so coincidentally sets them on a path to cut off Bailey's escape.
Lyn's Centurion walks straight up to her, as casually as can be, and smacks her on the back of the head. Cate no doubt makes a brave last stand by shooting at hers, but receives basically the same treatment. It might flick her gun out of her hand first, depending on what she does, but the end result is the same.
Bailey has a Centurion behind and one threatening to cut her off ahead. She may not make it, either, having been delayed by helping Lyn. As for Astraea... Surprisingly, one of her shots gets lucky. The Centurion assigned to her was the one with the blasted face, and one of Astraea's bullets finishes the job by striking its head. It must have hit something vital that time, because the Centurion falls over and doesn't move again.
The gun falters, briefly, in Astraea's hands; too slick with blood now for her to keep a good grip. A marine would know how to work past that. She'll have to ask Alain at some point. It's a scenario she never though about before. She bites into her lip -- hard -- to process through the pain. Pain isn't new to her, so that part she can deal with. She manages to get a better grip just in time to get off a shot on the Centurion closing in on her (perhaps panic helps?). She knows it's luck, she does, but she scrambles back from the cylon as it falls into a heap all he same, turning to try to fire on the ones closing in on Bailey. "Frak, frak, frak-" the epithet becomes a litany.
What the hell is that tin can doing? He could have shot her 10 times over. Lyn grabs her ice axe off her back and swings it into the chest of the Centurion, before he smacks her in the back of the head and she goes down like a ton of bricks. Time for another nap.
Well shit indeed; Bailey only isn't swearing anymore because she's breathing hard, and then yelping as she tries to jump sideways out of the paths of both Centurions heading in her direction. There's one in front of her and one behind her, so sideways is the only answer. As is actually taking a second to shoot, but she can only shoot in one direction -- the one in front of her is the winner of her gunfire. Here's hoping any of the rounds make contact.
Cate continues to bring up the rear. There's a sinking feeling, knowing this is it, but she fights for all she's worth to give the rest as much of a chance as possible. "Motherfrakkers!" she yells at the incoming Cylons in dismayed anger. A burst to the head takes out one Centurion, and a second burst damages a second badly, but then her SMG clicks empty. She draws her pistol but doesn't have a chance to fire it before the second Centurion swats it away with one arm and clonks her on the chin with the other. The medic goes down like a sack of potatoes.
One Centurion (the one Cate damaged) lifts both Cate and Lyn, hauling away limp bodies to gods-only-know-where. This leaves two very-determined Centurions after Bailey and Astraea. The newbie and the pilot. They probably make very impressive last stands, but in the end, it's not quite enough. Bailey and Astraea go the way of Lyn and Cate.
Death is a cold, hard truth of war. A lot of pilots don't see it up close and personal. Viper pilots definitely don't. Certain Raptor pilots don't. Astraea has. She flies in and out of hot zones often. But what she sees happen to Cate and Lyn defies expectations. Cylons shoot people. They don't knock them out. Being mowed down by bullets is brutal, it's messy, but at least it's (usually) a quick death. What Nova expects to come of this isn't, so she's fighting panic and barely managing. Her hand isn't helping. She puts on a brave front, but it's still just pilot versus machine. Very, very well-armored and brutal machine. Her rounds ping harmlessly off the armor of the one to Bailey's back and it rounds on her, flinging the SMG carelessly aside before it knocks her out, too.
An unknown amount of time passes while everyone is unconscious. Cate will be the first to come to, by some stroke of luck, and the others will follow sooner or later. For Bailey it might be later, since the poor thing got a double whammy. When they wake, they find themselves together, locked in a cage. Probably only Cate has been around long enough to recognize it as similar to what was done with some of the prisoners back at Edson. In this case, however, they seem to be in some sort of cave system. It's very dark. Emrys is in the cage with them, also unconscious, and for some reason, Cate's medpack has been thrown haphazardly into one corner. The contents have been rifled through, and anything that could conceivably be a weapon against the Cylons or provide a means to escape has been removed, but at least she has the supplies to treat her comrades' injuries.
A short distance away, barely visible in the gloom, there's another cage, the same size as the one where the CF people are being held. There's only one man in that cage, filthy and ragged but apparently physically unharmed. He's holding his knees and rocking forward and back, muttering to himself.
Cate never expected to wake up again after that. She certainly didn't expect to wake up inside her worst nightmare. She sits up and looks around, letting dizziness settle and her eyes adjust. She takes stock of their surroundings, the fellow in the other cage, and the unmoving forms in hers, but she doesn't go to them right away. At first she just sits there, dazed and defeated. Tears leak from her eyes. She couldn't say how long she sat there for before a groan or the rustle of someone stirring nearby snapped her out of it. Bailey's closest, so Cate crawls over to her and shakes the other woman's shoulder gently. "Stanhope, hey."
Lyn stirs finally and groans. She sits up very slowly, rubbing at the back of her head and peering around with blurry eyes. "Cate? You ok?" she rasps out, before looking down at the Viper pilot nearby. "Welp. We found Captain Montjoy." She grimaces.
Bailey is harder to rouse than in her normal, hyper-alert state; she's sluggish but not entirely nonresponsive, and one eye opens as she processes Cate's presence, touch and the sound of her name. The other eye remains closed, the open one blinks a couple of times, and a sound like 'nng' comes out first, followed by, "Rhodes?" Or a slurred version of Cate's name, anyway. A couple more blinks and that second eye opens, and she makes an effort to sit up and turn to look when she hears what Lyn says. Instead it turns into a cringe, a return to having her eyes shut, and, "Does anyone know where ..." And then, no, it's too hard for her to finish a sentence.
It's shifting onto her injured hand that causes Astraea to wake. She makes a small, pained sound at first before she pushes upright with her left. She blinks, eyes adjusting in the changed light and with the lingering pain from the knock on her noggin. She's alive. So are the others. "Wha-" And then. "Oh... Lords..." She's read some of the reports from Edson. Not many, since her focus was on the attacks on the base, but some. The pilot is frozen for a second before she spots the Viper pilot, scrambling over on one hand and knees, reaching for his shoulder once by him so she can start checking him over. It's slow-going with the bad hand still held against her, but she's at least making sure he's, y'know, alive.
In the other cage, the fellow seems to rouse out of whatever state he's in at the sounds of activity from the other cage. He lets out a shrill screech of a laugh. "They're gonna take you away," he singsongs. "One by one, one by one, here they come, the monsters are gonna take you away..." he dissolves into another laugh, and then skitters to the other side of his cage to curl up in the corner again, muttering to himself. That's not creepy at all.
Cate just gives a silent little headshake to Lyn. Okay isn't even in the same solar system for her right now. She's alive though, as evidenced by her moving around. "Just sit still," she advises Bailey, getting the other woman settled in a sitting position against the bars. She doesn't answer the question, trusting the other marine to figure it out on her own. It's about then that Cate notices her pack. She frowns at it, mumbling something unprintable under her breath. Scooting over there, she tugs open the flap to see what they left. The words from the other man in the cage cause the medic to falter. She closes her eyes, shuddering, and then continues digging through the pack. It's probably too much to hope that the Toasters left her enough morpha to put them all out of their misery, but damn if the idea doesn't cross her mind.
"Okay," says Bailey softly, looking relieved as she starts to relax. "Sit still. I am good at still ..." She repeats this, nods a couple of times, and lets her eyes slowly close again ... at which point she returns to unconsciousness. This does mean she isn't vomiting, though, and any of Cate's checks will determine that her vital signs are fine. If she needs to be awakened, she'll rouse, but until that point: sleep is better than pain.
"Hawk's alive," Astraea says, with relief in her voice. Pain, too, but there's a lot of that going around. "He's out, but breathin'." She sits back with a sigh, looking towards the man in the other cage. She suppresses a shudder at his words, drawing her hand in against her again. "Got anythin' for pain in that bag, doc?" She's not sure what's left, seeing the contents scattered as they are.
Lyn grunts and sits down. Her leg is really unpleasantly throbbing. "Cate? I've had this belt on too long I think. Um, can you take a look for me at this leg?"
Cate shakes her hand to Astraea. The news that Emrys is alive gets a frown from Cate, but she at least has the good graces to not say aloud that he'd have been better off dead. She drags the bag over to Lyn and begins pulling at the belt to loosen it. Cate's mostly working one-handed thanks to the blisters on her left palm from where the Raptor burned it, using her left as little as possible.
"Frak." Astraea says the word quietly, drawing her hand away from her abdomen as she sits back. She finally gets a good look at, swallowing back the bile that threatens to come up. She reaches to start picking bits of shrapnel out of the wound, but that just makes her head spin. So instead, she just curls back in around the injured limb and moves to tuck in against the side of the cage next to Emrys' prone form. She'll wait her turn to have someone else look at the injury; she hasn't the fortitude to do it herself. She is most definitely not that badass.
When the belt is released, the blood rushes back to the leg and Lyn's pain slams into her like a freight train. She makes an 'urp' sound, and passes out.
"Lyn?" The alarmed call slips from Cate's lips when her friend slumps, all sorts of worst-case scenarios playing through her head. Or, wait, maybe this time that's a best-case scenario? It's all very confusing. Either way, the brief flash of panic subsides when it's clear that Lyn's still breathing, and the bleeding from her leg isn't dire. Cate gets her bandaged up as well as she can (tying off the bandage at the end is a particular struggle) before scooting over to Nova. "Let's see that hand," she says in a somber tone.
Maybe being passed out is a good thing. Astraea's in pain and all she can do is think of worst-case scenarios. Never mind Mumbles in his cage over there. When Cate asks for her hand, she draws it away and offers it out to the medic, slowly unfurling her fingers. She does her best not to look while it's being worked on, too. The broken panel from the Raptor did a number on it. She's got some pretty bad damage there; there's still shrapnel and even after it's patched up, she's not going to have much use of her hand for a few days.
A sympathetic frown creases Cate's face. "Sorry, this is going to hurt," she mumbles the obvious. Her ministrations are punctuated by a few extra mumbled 'sorry's along the way. She works the shrapnel free as carefully as she can with the fingers of her good hand and then bandages it up.
"Already hurts," Astraea mutters, but flinches all the same as Cate gets to work. She grimaces, grabbing at her thigh with her left hand; doing her best not to squirm around too much. "Why-" she asks once the hand is being bandaged, "do ya think they took us an' didn't jes', y'know, kill us?" Like normal.
Cate's jaw tenses at the question from Astraea. "You really don't want to know," she says in a taut, subdued voice. "That'll keep for now." She ties off the bandage awkwardly and then starts checking Emrys for signs of injury in need of tending.
There's a glance, briefly, to the man in the other cage and Astraea shudders again before she leans back against the bars of their own. "Frakkin' Cylons," she mutters before twisting to look over Emrys. Her features soften into concern. "Guess we know why th' other recon teams couldn't find him." She leans over a bit, to watch Cate work. "Anythin' I can do to help?"
Cate nods slightly, her eyes flicking up to Emrys' face as she checks him over. Apparently there's nothing the medic deems worthy of immediate treatment, for she doesn't try to wake him up. She shakes her head to the second question as she's cleaning up the used supplies. She picks up one of the pieces of shrapnel and wipes it on a dressing before tucking it away in her cargo pants pocket. It's pretty useless, but somehow it makes her feel better to have. "Guess that depends on whether you believe in praying." Cate is definitely not earning her cheerleader badge today. With everyone's wounds tended but her own, she sits back down with her back against the cage and lets out a soft sigh.
There will be no comfortable sleep for the lot of them. The ones that passed out are lucky, in that sense. Astraea lets out a sigh, cradling her hand. "I used to be," she admits, quietly. "Dunno if I really am anymore." She looks up, around, trying to spot... anything that might be useful, trapped as they are. "Jes' seems like everythin' gets worse, no matter how much I pray."
"Yeah. Well. Now might be a good time to start back up again," Cate says glumly. She crosses her arms, the left held gingerly on top so it doesn't throb as much, and lets her head loll back against the bars. Her face bears a slightly pained expression, lips curled downward.
"I, ah- only know th' basics of first aid, but ya want me to take a look at that, for ya?" Astraea stares at Cate's arm, as the medic favors it. She doesn't comment -- for the moment -- further on the topic of prayer. It's a difficult one to consider. The gods seem rather far away in this place.
"Just a burn," is Cate's flat response. "Nothing to do but dress it to keep it from getting infected." She makes a little scoffing sound. "Hardly seems much point in that." Her forehead scrunches up a bit, a visible effort to maintain her composure as it frays a bit around the edges.
The Scorpian pilot swallows a bit, looking around the cage. "So they didn't leave ya wit' any... ointments or antibiotics or anythin' either?" Astraea lifts her hands to scrub at her face and... stops just before her right comes into contact with her head. Right, right. She drops both to her lap again with a sigh. "No water, ether, looks like. That's- frakkin' Cylons. We're gonna need water at least. Soon. They shoulda jes' shot us. Dyin' of dehydration's gonna be worse."
Cate shakes her head, then sighs. "You can put a dressing on it if it makes you feel better," she relents. The mention of water causes her lips to thin. "I'm sure they'll give us water at some point. Otherwise Montjoy would be dead already."
"Unless he was taken only recently," Astraea points out, with another look to the unconscious Viper jock. She sighs, before moving over towards the medic. She settles down, reaching for what remains of the supplies. "Lemme dress it. It'll give me somethin' to do, yeah?" She starts digging through to see what she has to work with.
"That guy wasn't," Cate points out with a nod towards the other cage. She unfolds her arms and holds the injured hand out for Astraea to see. It's a moderate burn, the angry red skin already starting to blister in places.
"Ya got me there," Astraea admits, glancing warily towards the other cage. "So hopefully we get water soon." She looks to the burn and winces. "Wish we had it now. Ointment'd be better, but water'd be somethin'." She starts carefully applying bandaging to the burn. "This'll at least protect it against anythin' else an' help cushion it." She tries to be gentle as she goes.
"Might be too bad for ointment anyway - especially in a dirty shithole like this," Cate reasons. She sucks in a breath when the bandaging starts, squirming a little and biting back a soft cry of pain in a few spots. When the pilot has finished, she takes a few deep breaths and then mumbles, "Thanks."
"I'd be a shitty SAR pilot if I didn't at least try," Astraea points out, slumping back against the bars once it's done. "Usually leave it to ya medics, but every so often it's down ta me or th' backseater, y'know?" She draws her knees up towards her chest, doing her best to look anywhere but the other cage. She settles for watching Emrys, lest he wakes. "I kinda hope they don't send anyone after us... they'll just end up th' same way."
Cate continues just to sit quietly, letting the pain settle. She nods to Astraea. "Yeah. Once had a SAR ECO play medic on me." There's a sad quirk of her lips at the memory. The latter remark causes Cate to shrug. "They probably will. I'm not holding my breath on them finding us though." Which probably explains why the medic is hauling herself to her feet and going over to examine the cage's door and lock.
"I've never... paid much mind to th' protocol," Astraea says, watching Cate. She's almost numb as she speaks. "How many ships or recon groups ya send an' lose b'fore ya give up. Hawk went down. I guess they lost th' Sag recon group an' then we got sent. That's three. Four? Five? Eventually they'll stop. They'll decide it's a losin' game an' give up." She looks to the other cage. "I don't think he was one of th' ones sent t'find Hawk though. I think he's been here longer."
"I didn't think they lost any trying to find him - they just didn't find any trace." At least that's how Cate heard the briefing. Who knows. She shrugs. "They'll give up eventually. Write us off unless we can give them some sign, like they did on Picon." Cate doesn't sound bitter about that - well, no more bitter than she was about this whole situation anyway. It's just a simple statement of fact. "But yeah, think you're right about him." Cate rattles the door experimentally. It seems pretty sturdy, but that doesn't stop her from taking a couple steps away from it and slamming her boot against it in a side kick. If only it were as breakable as pine boards, but alas. Not so much.
"I missed th' briefin'," Astraea admits. "Was too busy goin' over th' sat footage." She looks a little sheepish, but not much. "Figured if we ended up like this, mebbe they did too. Guess lucky them." She watches as Cate tries the door, but with little hope. There's a small sigh. "Guessin' th' Cylons know how to build somethin' stronger than we are."
"Yeah. Lucky them," Cate agrees dully. The comment about the Cylons' building ability doesn't deter Cate. Fueled by desperation, she kicks the door again. And again. Cate's an athletic woman, but she's built more for agility than strength. Barring divine intervention, there's really no chance of her kicking through a metal padlock. Logically she has to know that, and yet she tries, her boot slamming repeatedly against the bars with a teeth-rattling thunk.
There's a wince at the repeated kicks and Astraea, after another, finally raises her voice a bit. "Mebbe you oughta save yer strength?" There's another pause and a look to the three passed out. "Or... not call attention to us. Even if ya do break it open, you an' I can't get them out with us, Rhodes. What do we do? Run for it an' leave 'em behind? Hope we can get help?"
"Save it for what, exactly?" Cate challenges, lining up for another kick. She's starting to get a little winded, though. "And yep, that's exactly my plan. Get help or die trying." Her money would probably be more on the latter than the former, but either way it beats just sitting here waiting to be dissected. She kicks the door again.
"With what? We ain't got guns. We're wounded. We dunno where we are, or th' layout of th' place. We'd be better as a group." Astraea looks over to the other three. "If we break out of here as... all five of us, or even-" Well, Lyn can't run and they don't know Hawk's status yet. She sighs. "Our chances aren't good jes' th' two of us, even if we get th' door open."
"We've got no chance as long as we're all stuck in this cage. You want to just sit there and wait for the Toasters to take you away and start cutting you into little pieces, that's your prerogative." Cate, on the other hand, is determined to give the door a couple-or-ten more kicks before pain and exhaustion finally defeats her. She turns her back to the stubborn door and sinks down to the ground, breathing hard.
"I jes' think we can figure out a battle plan is all," Astraea offers, wincing. Her expression, when Cate gives up, is sympathetic. "Work t'gether, sort somethin' out. I'd hate t'leave th' others an' have 'em think we abandoned 'em. Or th' Cylons treat 'em worse outta revenge." She's quiet for a time before swallowing and asking, in a quiet voice: "Issat what they're gonna do? Dissect us? Wh... why would they do that?"
"Lyn knows I'd never just bail on her. I don't give a shit what the others think if it means getting out of here to get the cavalry. And I don't think it really gets much worse than getting tortured to death so... I'll risk it. Not that it matters since I can't get the frakking door open." Cate slams her uninjured palm against the bars in frustration. A thin-lipped nod answers the latter question. "It's what they did on Picon. And Canceron. Who the frak knows why."
"I thought they jes' had labor camps on Picon," Astraea mumbles, slouching against the bars at her back. She lets out a low sigh, looking up at the ceiling. Or whatever passes for such. "Frak." She draws another breath, but it comes shakily. "Mebbe onna th' recon marines can get th' lock once they're..." she looks over to Lyn and Bailey. "...mebbe they'll take me or Hawk first, yeh? Give th' rest of ya water?"
Cate shakes her head slowly. "No, I saw it." She gives a quiet nod to the latter point, but doesn't comment on who should go first. The medic falls quiet. Not asleep - it's doubtful she could unless someone clonked her on the head again - but zoned out and lost to her own thoughts.