Some revelations can only be survived with breakfast in bunk.
Location: Aboard The Dauntless
Related Scenes: None
Scene Number: 1560
Do you know what time it is, Alain Tomlinson? It is too frakking early in the morning, that's what time it is. But is that going to stop one particularly determined Hibernian from ferreting out your current location and coming to find you? No it will not. And so, at such an ungodly hour, a familiar redhead twitches the curtain of the top bunk of A3, not peeking in of course, because that would be rude, but not as rude as waking a man from sleep after a long and exceedingly boring CAP. "Alain, you decent in there?" If it helps, there are both coffee smells and pastry smells on the other side of the curtain.
Alain's decent enough, or at least a blanket's covering him, so there's no awkwardness. Except for that of being roused at far-too-early. "Something going on?" He's sitting up abruptly -- years of habit stopping just shy of hitting the roof of the bunk with his head, at least. He stares, blearily-eyed, out at Eva. Coffee and pastry helps, to judge by his expression, but he's still half-sleep, yawning in that deep, contagious way.
"Well, yes and no. It's time for breakfast," no, no it really isn't, "For you, I mean, I already ate, but you're going to need your strength today. Something big's come up." Though clearly, it can't be any sort of real emergency, if Eva's standing at his bunk bring both a peace offering and not wearing her flight suit. Once Alain's sat himself up as well as he can manage, she sets the tray. It has a mug of covered coffee and a selection of, well something sweet anyway, by the smell, under a silver cover. There's a hand-written card on top. It states. "In case of emergency, turn over." It is not, in point of fact, turned over.
Swinging his legs out, Alain rubs at his eyes, and squints at the tray. After a moment, he reaches to pull free the silver cover, because -- out of all the items on display -- of course he's going to go for cake that's underneath first. Priorities! He, at least, cups a hand underneath him to capture crumbs. "Was I supposed to read that first?" he asks, even as he's swallowing, grinning at her. And then her words sink in, "Big day?"
That grin is answered with one of her own, Eva pulling one of the napkins from the tray and twitching it open to protect Alain's blanket. "Well, yes, but I do understand the importance of priorities." As soon as Alain has the tray in hand, so to speak, Eva settles in, resting against the edge of the bunk, moving aside so that she isn't going to be in the way of getting in and out of the bunk. She's just tall enough to be able to rest comfortably, "Yes, I think it's going to be a very big day. Good day, bad day, well, we'll see."
After a flickered glance between the coffee and the card, Alain finally reaches for the card, flipping it over. He grins, waving it for a moment, "This is going on any spare cake I see around the ship," he tells her, setting it on the ledge of his bunk, before he slides slowly down to the floor. He reaches for the coffee, taking a gulp before stuffing the pastry in his mouth. He's side-eyeing Eva as he does so. "You need to practice nonchalance more, Cherry," he says, after another brief yawn, finishing off the pastry and opening his locker.
"I know. I was too excited, wasn't I?" Eva, who aside from the grin did indeed manage to contain herself, steps back from the bunk as Alain slips down to the floor. She turns away, moving to help herself to one of the pastries. because really, even if she has had breakfast, there's always room for pastry. Hips don't make themselves. "Didn't know if you'd be happy or not. You might have made a run for the border and then I'd have had to hunt you down like a dog. I had to sneak it up on you, like they snuck it up on me. Stirling's still got your pins, I think. I couldn't steal those." And really, she wouldn't have anyway. Part of the fun of being promoted is being pinned, for most people.
Alain takes another gulp of coffee, before he sets it down on the table in the midst of the room. His voice is kept low in deference to his bunkmates who are still asleep, "Thought about it," he says, with a grin. "Figured the brass probably made a mistake and will find out sooner or later, might as well make the most of it while I can." He reaches into his locker and begins dressing in his off-duty uniform, just as crisp and carefully attired as his duty uniform. "Not moving to the Captain's bunkroom though. Even if my new bunkmate," he refuses to use the term 'bunkie', gesturing towards Pudge's space below his, "Is, uh, challenging to live with." He bends to pick up a crumpled, torn book on gaming, setting it on table, too.
"I was going to offer, but I figured that would make things worse, not better." Eva, having pulled the pastry apart into bite sized pieces, turns towards Alain, doing that practiced, mostly looking in your direction, but not really because you're dressing thing. "They didn't make a mistake, Alain, and you know that. Rules and regs be damned, you've earned those pins. I mean, once you actually get the pins. "But I'm not sure why you don't just move to a different bunkroom all together. Plenty of empty space left yet, I think there's at least a few spots top and bottom open in F. That way you could get the gang back together and all." A glance down at the bottom bunk, "Haven't met him except in passing for duty. Gamer, right? You should convince Double Tap to move in, so the guy doesn't get lonely."
"Offer what? Help the brass figure out they've made a mistake?" Alain asks, with a laugh, clearly deliberately misinterpreting her response. He's carefully smoothing down his clothing as he says easily, "Can't imagine why I'd move out. I like it in here, and I'm sure it's just a matter of time before Banshee finds whatever Pudge is holding out for to move," he chuckles. "Oh, he and Double-Tap go way back, apparently."
"Offer you a spot in B. We've had a few people move out," just a brief hesitation there, "And it's not a crowded as it used to be." Once he's decent, Eva finally turns to face him as a normal human being would. You know, with the exception of the fact that she's now eating one of his breakfast pastries. "Well, I suppose if she likes a challenge, more power to her. You heading down to the offices, now that you know you're not getting any more sleep?"
"You trying to rub it in that with rank comes more paperwork, or what?" Alain's just not good at disapproving looks, and it fails almost immediately into a sigh of resignation as he picks up his mug of coffee from the table. "Fine, fine. Let's go."
Eva shakes her head, waving Alain of, her expression actually merry, "Not at all. I just thought you might like to actually switch out your pins for the ones you're supposed to be wearing. Before you start wandering around and the next thing you know, people start thinking the rumours weren't true." A brush of her hands, as she finishes the pastry, wrapping up the crumbs in the napkin she unfolded, before she tosses it out. The rest? Those end up covered with the lid again and left on Alain's bunk...as you do. "I've got a few free hours, so my time is yours."
There's a wry -- and finally genuine -- grin from Alain when Eva ends up setting the remaining pastries on his bunk. "Uh, better just..." he leans over to close the curtains, just in case anyone gets any ideas while he's gone. With a gesture, he starts walking out into the corridor. Once they're a sufficient pace away from the bunks, he says, "You know, it's hard not to wonder -- just a little bit -- how much this promotion is just because of this war, you know?" he glances sidelong at Eva, "Like, if we hadn't lost so many Captains recently..." he grimaces, shakes his head. "Frak. Forget I said that," he adds hastily, tone apologetic.
"That's good thinking." Playing straight man now, Eva steps back, allowing the scene of the crime to be hidden away. A, "Thank you," offfered, as Alain gestures for her to precede him, though, nearly of a height, they fall into step easily enough. When the comment comes, Eva seems to, mostly, brush it off,, though there's a tightness around her eyes. A hand reaches out, fingertips settling lightly on his arm, just above the elbow, "Don't apologize. It's...easy to forget. We lose so many...I know you...it's fine." She does, though, try to steer the conversation back to the topic, pace returning to normal, "Of course it's because of the war, Alain. But I don't think, it's...just for that reason. We haven't lost that many. But I think war shapes you in a way other duty doesn't. Think about how much less experience you would have had as a marine, if you'd never gone to Sag. if you'd sat at a desk all day, for instance? It would have taken a lot longer to prove your worth. War, is, if nothing else, wonderful for sharpening your focus."
Alain's gaze remains on Eva's face as she touches his arm, taking in her expression, before he nods. He seems more than happy to let her steer the conversation, taking a sip from his cup as they resume walking. "Sad, but true," he admits, briefly. "I don't miss Sag. I'm glad we're gone, and I hope to all the Gods we don't go back any time soon." It's about as fervent as he ever is short of prayer. "Banshee's been different, too, since she came back. In a good way, I think -- she's taking less risks, but still scoring good kills. Just wish it hadn't taken getting near-killed for her to realize she's invulnerable."
Eva's expression is genuine, edged with memory, but she's never been one to hide her feelings from the other pilot, "It's honestly fine, Alain. It gets, easier, you know that." Sadly, the one constant of human nature is that pain is never as sharp tomorrow, as is today. "You think so? I often wonder, when someone comes back from an injury, or a long time away, how it changes them. Are they different? Or are they just biding their time? I hope she's found some solid ground. I have the feeling she spent a while there struggling with herself."
He doesn't say anything for a moment, but his hand -- the one not holding the coffee -- hooks into her arm, silently reassuring. "She's different," Alain says, with certainty. "Even out of the cockpit, I can see the changes. Like it or not, what happened to her took a part of her, changed her." He nods to Eva, as they descend another floor and head for the squadron offices. This time of morning, it's practically a ghost town.
Eva accepts the comfort, easy in Alain's presence. They've known each other too long for anything else. And given the pace at which they've lost members of the wolves? That is a comfort, "Then if you think the change is a good one, I'm glad. I just...want to make sure that she doesn't draw into herself. Get too far into her own head. Start questioning her abilities and her capabilities. That's a harder thing to manage than the bodily injury. And I've seen it happen to a number of the pilots over time." Eva steps away, as they finally arrive at the offices, a hand offering your classic gameshow hostess flourish. "Welcome to your new abode, Captain Tomlinson."
"I think only time will tell whether that's the case -- once we get back out into things. I heard the brass has plans for us -- that doesn't really ease my mind," Alain admits, with a grimace. "Especially since Caprica." But one has to accept the difficult choices, along with the levity, and he plays along, smiling when she gestures. "Thanks, Captain Thorne. But I still prefer Jigger. It feels weird otherwise," he admits.
"I think it's supposed to. Once it starts getting easy to hear, that's when you know your helmet isn't going to be fitting anymore." There really aren't any assigned desks in the offices, so Eva simply settles onto, not at, the first one that seems to have been disused for while, leaning easily against the edge, eyes tracking Alain as he moves through the space, "I heard the same. You know, you'd think it would be, as far as war can be, exciting to be on the bleeding edge, but it seems, more and more, that what they're using the 'tip of the spear' to do, is use it to prod a huge pile of shit." A tip of her head, "I hope you don't mind Alain." She's always seemed to prefer it to his callsign.
Meanwhile, Alain moves around Eva and settles behind the desk. He doesn't seem to treat it any differently than any other day he's been here, filling out paperwork. Except this time, he has coffee, and he sips at it with an overly expressive, ahh of appreciation for Eva's benefit. "And leaving it behind when we depart," the Gemenese pilot tacks on. "I saw what Caprica was like after we left. It's strange to have gone back, thinking -- maybe things have gotten better since we left. It feels like we should've made it better, you know?" It's fanciful thinking, and it shows in the brief, clouded expression. It disappears, hover, at her latter question. "From you, Eva? Never," he says, with a genuine smile.
Eva shifts, as Alain comes around, sitting half on and half off of the desk, "It's nice, right? You don't even need to make sure you bring a coaster." It's humourously said, but there is something freeing ink knowing that you're in a space in which you truly belong. The conversation though, his words, bring her back to that serious mien, "Yes. That might be the worst of all. We're supposed to be out there making a difference, making things better, and hell, we can't even get the people we're supposed to be working with to want to cooperate with us." A thoughtfulness, as she considers the main behind the desk, "You know, I know your name is Gemenese, but it seems very familiar to me, comfortable. You know there are still some sounds in Standard that I can't pronounce well? Like 'Z'. But you? You're easy."
"It... doesn't really feel different," Alain admits, wryly. "Sorry. Maybe once the pips come in." He takes a gulp from his mug, coughing at her final statement, especially as a pair of LT's walk in. "Should we, ah, grab some proper breakfast?" he suggests, pushing to his feet.