After the inquiry into the friendly fire incident, Cate and Aleksander chat about the situation with the VRM.
Related Scenes: None
Scene Number: 1532
During the entirety of the Inquiry, Aleksander was actually very well behaved, very unlike what most people have seen out of this particular Colonial Forces Marine. He was dressed properly for the event, was silent when it was not his turn to speak, and only spoke when directed to, mostly to answer questions from the senior brass that were manning the panel. The answers he gave were also very politically correct, terminology used was neutral in effect and by the book. The answers he offered were his recolleciton of the event, of course in favor of the Colonial Forces, but nothing he said came close to attempting to antagonize the other side. When asked about the usage of a frag grenade, his answer was also straight forward, how his training kicked in when going against an enemy with the upperhand in the engagement that were clustered together. It was the best way he knew to turn the momentum around when they were, as he had felt, under heavy and concentrated fire. Davion volunteered no additional information than what was asked of him, and wore a masked expression that most would say is a skilled poker face.
When the actual inquiry ended, Aleksander's demeanor does appear slightly more relaxed instead of a rigid, military posture, but his good behavior continued. If someone approached to greet him or speak to him, he would answer in good manners and only volunteer information he had already testified to when called on if it was brass or someone he didn't know.
Cate's testimony was not quite as poster-child as Aleksander's, a lifetime anger at the Virgon forces simmering just beneath the surface and peeking out occasionally in the set of her jaw or her clipped tone. She answered each question with the minimal amount of information and nothing more, though the shiner from the recent dustup may have undermined her credibility somewhat. The Virgon officer on the panel tried to needle her about having a grudge against the Virgon marines, but Cate didn't bite. It probably helped that she didn't actually fire her weapon during the escapade. She saw Sgt Grey go down, moved to help him, and was shot for her trouble. Her recollection got a little fuzzy and useless after that.
Cate's only too happy for it all to be done with. As the room begins to clear, she wanders over by Aleksander. "Now we wait, I guess," she says with a frown.
When it was Cate that was the next to approach, Aleksander releases a slow sigh of what is most likely relief. Though his expression softens a bit more, Davion still acts as a proper Marine would, especially when brass is not too far away. "That we do, though I'm comfortable waiting here. I'm glad they didn't let us get dragged down to Sagittaron, things would've went a bit differently, I would think." His answer is given quietly, not exactly a whisper but not enough to carry too far. "Shouldn't take long, we acted completely in self defense. Taking down one of our insurgent allies was one thing, when Grey went down? All bets were off, they were as hostile as a group of Cylons trying to put lead into us." A pause there before he looks at the bruising around Cate's bruise, "How is that healing? Sorry that we got you into that mess at Thorpe." 'We' most likely meaning him and his Tauran counterpart. Aleksander did egg on the Virgon Royal Marines, purposefully.
Cate tugs on the high collar of her dress uniform like a kid tugging on a tie, obviously uncomfortable in the thing. "Yeah, I'm glad they did it here too. I think if we had to be in the same room as those <<muttered word in Celtan>> bastards, there would've been more bloodshed," she remarks dryly. The question about the bruise causes her to wave a hand dismissively near it. "Don't worry about it. My chest hurts worse from where they shot me. They deserved it," she mumbles with a frown, dipping her voice low enough that only Aleksander can hear. A few of the others have already escaped, and Cate says, "We don't need to stick around here - you want to bail?"
"Wouldn't be surprised if we ended up in a fighting withdraw and emergency evac out." Aleksander says with a smirk, not an amused one though since that could've been a very real, and losing possibility if this Inquiry happened planetside. When Cate waves off his apology and mentions where she was shot, Davion can't help but wince out of sympathy, nodding his head understandingly. As for the suggestion on taking off, there are no complaints from the Tauran, "Yeah, I wouldn't mind not being here while they discuss what to do about this whole thing." With that, he turns and heads towards the exit of the room, politely clearing a path if needed for the trailing medic. When they make it outside to the corridor, Aleksander looks back, "Where to? Somewhere quiet, like the observatory or do you have another place in mind?"
"Probably not the sort of diplomatic relations they'd be hoping for," Cate agrees deadpan to his entirely plausible scenario. "Obs deck sounds nice. I don't really feel like being hounded with 'how'd it go's all day. I do want to swing by the berths though and get out of this stupid thing." She tugs at the collar again. "The only good thing I can say about it is that it isn't that damn Virgon red coat." She follows along behind him as he clears the way.
Aleksander can't help but laugh though he tries to stifle it, the invisible weight that was felt around his shoulders beginning to lighten with each step that takes them further and further away from the room. Heading towards the stairwell, he nods once again in full agreement, "Bunkrooms first then, whoever designed these formal uniforms always seem to make them just slightly too small and stuffy." As for the Virgon red coat, Davion doesn't comment, at least not yet, perhaps waiting until they eventually reach the observatory. There are still too many Virgon Royal Marine personnel on board, who knows if they are around the corner or up the steps. A wrong word spoken at this point will only inflame the situation further and as amusing as that may be to Aleksander, he also knows that it may also get him kicked out or worse, transferred to a less favorable posting.
Cate relaxes as well once they get away from the ready room, though she's still too tense to be considered 'relaxed'. It's relative. "Seems to be a pre-requisite for them, yeah. Formal must be uncomfortable." She doesn't say much else as they make their way to the berthings. "You swapping uniforms too? I can meet you back out here," she offers, before venturing into the first bunkroom pod.
"Yeah, I'm going to get out of mine. I rather wear a full kit for a patrol or even drills than wear this." Aleksander says as they reach the first of the bunkrooms in the Berthings area, "Meet you back out here." This is where they part ways, temporarily, as his bunkroom is further down. After Cate disappears into hers, Davion heads to his. Once out of the formal attire, properly putting it away, Aleksander returns in casual wear, the standard issued Colonial brown and grey double tanks and a pair of dessert camoflauge pants.
There's a brief smirk from Cate at his remark. Sore ribs mean it takes Cate a little longer than him to change, but she eventually rejoins him back out in the common area wearing CF sweatpants and a sweatshirt hoodie, her hair down from the regulation bun it was in for the inquiry. Then they're heading up to the obs lounge. It's pretty deserted in there at the moment, between people on duty and those who were tapped for or watching the inquiry.
As they climb their way towards the observation deck, Aleksander is definitely lighter on his feet now. With the formal uniform off, the invisible chains and shackles have also faded from his demeanor and his usual self has returned. "Ahh, I'm glad I'm out of those stiff clothes." He finally says with a sigh of relief when they step into the quiet and deserted lounge before he gives Cate a side glance, "You and those Virgons must have had some dark history, before you were assigned to the See-Eff, yeah?" The way Davion asks, it seems like he isn't surprised, with Cate's Celtan background.
"I miss having real clothes sometimes," Cate says, randomly, stuffing her hands into the pockets of the hoodie as they walk. Her eyes take in the surroundings habitually before allowing herself a moment to enjoy the view. The question surprises her a little, but she nods easily enough. "Yeah," she confirms with a sigh. "Pretty frakked up." Settlings gingerly into one of the couches, she lets her eyes drift to the planet spinning below. "Back home isn't so different from down there. More trees, though. Fewer Cylons."
Nearing one of the large viewports, Aleksander looks out towards the darkness of space, not one of the Marines that experience vertigo or needs to be landlocked to be comfortable. He appears to be adaptale to most conditions, "Must've been tough having to be stuffed into a room full of them, and forced to act proper." When Cate describes what it was like back on Virgon in comparison to Sagittaron, Davion can't help but wince slightly, shaking his head, "So what's happening down there with the insurgents is something you can relate to then. When they hit us, on the way towards that village..." His words trail off but what is unspoken is obvious, that happened back on Virgon as well. Just a different time and place.
Cate's mouth twists in a rueful half-smile when he mentions it being tough. "Tough was being the only Hibernian in a Royal Marine company for a year." She lets him imagine that for a moment before shrugging. "I learned to bite my tongue and keep my head down." His question about the insurgents gets a somber nod. "Yeah. I've nearly been blown up by both sides, if you can believe that." Of course she has, given her luck. There's a bitter chuckle for a moment. She then asks tentatively, "Does it bug you? Having fought them?"
"Frak, that is tough, Rhodes. How you managed to keep it together for that long... you are definitely made of sterner stuff than me." Aleksander says with a whistle of appreciation. He can't imagine having to serve with your enemies and dodging explosives from your friends. When she asks him the question, Davion easily shakes his head, no hesitation there, "Nah, once they hit Grey and tried to take the rest of us out, they were the enemy. Doesn't matter if they were made of metal or flesh, they had to be stopped, one way or another." Thus Aleksander's willingness to toss a frag grenade into the VRM squad.
Cate shrugs. "I dunno, you seem stern enough to me," she says with a tiny smirk. It quickly fades though. "I wasn't assigned to Hibernia with the marines. I couldn't have done that. I only joined up to fight the Cylons. But all this shit down on Sag..." Her lips thin. "It makes me angry, to see them doing the same damn things here that they do back home."
"The sterness is just Legionnaire training kicking in, when the frak has hit the fan. Otherwise you'd see me trying to find the shade and relax with a cigarette," Aleksander admits without shame as he turns his gaze from the viewport to Cate, "You weren't the only one that was angry, the Chaplain was too. Frak, when he threw the first punch at Camp Thorpe, my jaw nearly fell to the ground. I thought it was either me or Tomak that was going to do it, or one of the Royal Marines that we were baiting." A pause followed by a sigh, "As for what they are doing down there, they just tell a different story, paint the picture differently so they feel like they are in the right."
"Nothing wrong with that," Cate seems pretty accepting of the fact that he'd rather be under a tree wit ha cigarette. Her lips draw together into a worried frown about the chaplain though. "Yeah, that surprised me too. He's taking this whole thing awfully hard. Like for me... I've seen what they're capable of too many times."
Looking pleased with Cate's response to his admittance, Aleksander nods his head and will keep that in mind. As for the Chaplain, that is something that the Tauran doesn't know how to deal with. Put a Cylon in front of him, he will have many ways to dismantle the toaster. Put a troubled comrade in front of him that has inner demons plaguing him, Davion will have no clue where to start, "Operations were much simpler when we had one enemy to shoot at. If the Chaplain has not seen what you've seen, then he won't be able to deal with what the Royal Marines are doing without reacting letting emotions rule over reason. At least the Inquiry didn't paint him in a bad light, he was the most vocal trying to stop the shooting."
Cate nods, still frowning worriedly about the Chaplain. "Yeah. I guess the brass know how frakked up everything is, since they didn't throw the book at us for getting into a fight with them." She snorts slightly. "Never thought I'd be the one not reacting to the Virgons with emotion instead of reason."
"It all happened too quickly, Rhodes. I'm sure your training kicked in and your priorities are different than ours, you go to those of us who are hit first, despite the risks." Aleksander says with a shake of his head, not surprised that Cate wasn't involved in the shooting either, "That is why we'll always try to keep combat medics like you safe, first and foremost. Better to live to fight another day."
"Even if they're hit by our own people," Cate offers ruefully. "But I appreciate it. Like I said before - it's nice to be around people who have my back." A weak smile is flashed briefly.