Summary: Dane's ready…then he's not.
Date: early 84 ACH
Related Logs: None

Chaplains Office Genesis - Deck 11
83 ACH 23817 Souls

This is a small suite set aside for ecclesiastical purposes by the head Chaplain, Greje Diomed Karthasi. The larger office has walls covered in bookshelves, her desk sports a laptop computer and a variety of potted plants under a sunlamp, as well as a portable teapot and a mug tree bearing a collection of mugs, all souvenir mugs from a variety of santuaries at which she's practiced, worshipped, or made pilgrimage. There's a ghastly orange loveseat next to the door (for people seeking a moment to chat with the priest in a secular setting), and you need to squeeze between the arm of the loveseat and the front of the desk, but it's comfy enough to sit on.
----< Condition Three - Duty Area >----—-

Greje is just settling back down and getting back to her books, "Ah, Dane. Good. Have you spoken to Doctor Sloan?"

Ramiro steps into the office after Myron leaves. His hands are behind his back and he smiles softly to Greje. "I got your memo…" He says quietly. "No…I haven't." He shakes his head, moving to sit in the loveseat and look to her. "I've spent some time talking with Nico and reflecting on things." He takes a deep breath, apparently he has something to say. "One thing I've learned since I've been here is that there are different ways to view things. I've been resistant to it, even moreso after all of the recent happenings with the dreams and the things Apollo has gifted myself, as well as everything else we've been granted." He pauses. "I…felt for a long time like my every move was so important to the cosmic balance of everything that I started to deny myself the things that make me happy. I started making Nico feel like I was ashamed of her for not attending services." He shrugs. "She pointed out to me that I was having far more trouble in the chapel that day with you than she was. It made me think…everything in moderation." He pauses. "I love Nico Lex, and I want to marry her. I don't want to be apart from her, and we've talked about it like adults. I don't need to see Doctor Sloan because my worries have passed, and even when I had them I was refusing to say good bye to her."

Greje listens, not judging, just listening. "It may not tip the cosmic balance of things one way or the other, Dane, but it will significantly impact the rest of your life. I'm very sure she makes you happy. You wouldn't be seeing her at all if she didn't. And there's nothing wrong with that. But you're under a lot of emotional stress, and considering that three days ago you were telling me you were sure it was a bad idea but that you felt obliged to her, I would strongly suggest that you take the time to see Doctor Sloan and get some perspective. I'm not saying you should break things off. I'm just saying… go talk to the doctor. I've already had her ready her schedule to accomodate you."

"Doctor Sloan doesn't supercede the guidance I've found through meditation and prayer." Ramiro says, how very Gemenese of him. Shrugging a little, he tilts his head in her direction. "How do I explain this…" He trails off, very comfortable with his position on the subject. "…the problem that I was having with Nico was this. I believe that marriage is for life. We love eachother, but my Gemenese morality is different. I was worried that because of our spiritual differences that she wouldn't understand the scope of the commitment." He pauses. "So, unlike before, I came right out and told Nico how I felt. You see…I always try to be so diplomatic that I fail at saying the things I really want to."

"Of course she doesn't. But she can offer expert guidance to take into consideration along with meditation and prayer," Greje replies. "It won't take more than a few hours of your time," she points out, "And you seem to have quite admirably found the loophole in the mustanging problem," she adds with a smile. "So if you're feeling so confident, just humour me, alright, Dane? Please?" she adds, leaning a cheek on her hand and giving him a decently puppy-eyed stare.

Ramiro smiles to Greje. "No…no no no don't make the puppy-dog look…frak…" Ramiro says, running a hand through his hair. "Darn you, Greje…" He pauses, looking to her. "I really do want to marry this girl, you know. She's actually in the chapel right now…" He pauses. "…I know you're putting your foot down on this because you care." He smiles.

"Of course I care, Dane. And if it were up to me there'd be a mandatory year-long dating period required before any marriages at all. I don't want this flock to be rife with unhappy couples who got married just because they were madly in love and slash or scared of dying," Greje points out. "I've been telling everyone who's come in here to put things on hold. I didn't for you because…" she trails off, "Well, maybe because I thought you were special, too. Like you can't make mistakes. But remember that Apollo defied Aphrodite and soon learned the folly in that," she reminds him of the song they heard on the Destiny. "Don't follow in the Lord's footsteps so closely."

Dane watches Greje for a long moment, going back into his typical visage of reflection matched with a pair of eyes that manage to stare into everything regardless of his facial expression. "So you don't want to be the first one responsible for taking part in a mistake of mine?" Ramiro asks nodding a little bit, if he can see her point. "Well…if anything I definitely may have defied Aphrodite more than a few times…"

Greje nods her head, lips pursing together as she manages to keep a straight face through reporting, "Yeah— I'm pretty sure I lose priest points if you have to go through marriage counselling." She can't hold it for long, and the corners of her mouth twitch upward in a grin. "It doesn't have anything to do with me, Dane, except that I'd feel awful if things didn't work out. Which, you should be more worried about things not working out than about my being upset about it."

"Well..Greje you know I always respect your opinion…" Dane says, taking a deep breath. "…but you know how I am about psychiatrists. I trust prayer. We don't have Psychiatrists back home so it's like getting a Saggitarion to go see the doctor only I'm actually inclined to listen to your position on the issue." Dane chuckles, shaking his head a little bit. "Greje? Be front with me. You're more of an expert than I am. The visions, the interpretations, Aphrodite firing warning shots across my face." He pauses. "What do you really think is going on with me? I mean it's one thing if I try so hard to avoid hubristic thought that I rage a little bit against the machine, but my heart tells me other things." He pauses. "I can't help but feel there's a bigger picture in all of this. Can you at least counsel me on that? No pulled punches. Lay it all out."

"I think it's hard for us not to feel chosen, somehow, considering the circumstances," Greje replies. "To feel as if the Lords must be paying attention to us because… well, who else are they busy watching?" Greje shrugs. "Just remember that the rules haven't changed. We haven't been suddenly mustanged to demi-gods and heroes," she adds. "You can't expect Aphrodite to show up in a cloud of smoke and ask you to make a choice. You've only got your life… while it lasts."

"While it lasts…" Dane replies with a nod in her direction. "But what if we are, Greje? What if the possibility has always been there? Scripture details wars, like the Gospel of Rage with Hector, Ajax, Achilles…" He looks to her. "I'm not saying this is what it is, but what if? Our fleet may be the only humans left alive. We're talking less than thirty thousand people. How many priests? How many brothers and sisters?" He asks rhetorical questions. "And can you be so sure anymore, after the appearance of the Maenads?" He pauses. He blinks. "Greje? Were we supposed to take the Omphalos with us?"

"I seriously doubt that. It was well-tended by the God and by his followers. It was a blessing for us to be able to see it— if it wants to guide us somewhere, that's one thing, but to have the audacity to uproot it— I wouldn't have stood for it," Greje shakes her head. "And if we are chosen, we are chosen. But that doesn't give us free license to act like gods. Remember that even Agamemnon was punished for his hubris against Apollo."

"That I know, Agamemnon is a good example, but where does the line get drawn, though?" Ramiro asks. "You know what else? Clearly everything got complicated for me on a personal level the night I declined the rites of Aphrodite." He pauses, scratching his chin for a moment. "I guess that's where I become gray. With all of these signs…am I supposed to just keep doing what I'm doing or am I to take this as a sign to immerse myself in the spiritual aspect of what it is that I do?"

"Ultimately only you can decide what the Lords are telling you. If you feel that that mght be the message— maybe it is," Greje says calmly. "Do you think it is?"

Dane watches her from the loveseat. His eyes shift from side to side a little bit as he contemplates. "I feel that it's faith that brought us to the Red Planet, and the same faith that's brought us to find food, water, and our direction. If we stop now…I feel we'll lose our way." He looks to her. "You know in all of these conversations I rarely ask what the Lords tell you. Is that too personal a question?"

"I find the Lords usually let me know if I'm going the wrong way," Greje offers softly. "I feel it when I lose the path. I feel it dearly. But I have to admit a moment of sheer aporia at the visions. I thought—-" she breaks off, then shakes her head, "I don't know what I really thought," she amends. That's not true. "And then the Omphalos. If Dionysus hadn't been there to take my hand… I don't know what I would have done or thought."

Ramiro tilts his head a little bit and watches Greje as she changes her mind. "No…you thought what?" Dane asks. "That looked like a bit of braking there…" He asks, nodding to her. Moving a little to get comfortable on the loveseat, he leans one arm on the edge of the small orange monstrocity to watch her. "…tell me."

Greje keeps her eyes down on her desk as Dane pins her on this one. She looks up to the — fortunately, closed — hatch, then shifts her eyes briefly to Dane before looking away again, to her plants. "I wondered if we weren't some of those…" No. She can't even quite bring herself to say the word. "I mean, shared visions just don't happen, usually. But if it were some sort of signal…"

Dane chews the inside of his lip and nods slowly, looking to the top of her desk. He simply nods off into space for a long time, furrowing his brow for a while. "…I thought the same thing." He pauses. "…but that one day you told me that it couldn't be. I thought…" He shrugs. He blinks and leans back on the sofa, his hand to his chin as he watches the top of her desk. The awkward conversation goes easier this way. "…well to simply put it I had the instinct back then to fight your decision but you were an officer and I was enlisted, and I meant it when I said I would never do anything to jeopardize your position in the fleet. I know you'd hate to no longer be a practicing chaplain for the battle weary." He pauses, he lets out a deep breath. "…I know what you're thinking. Don't freeze up. We should talk about this, you're not doing anything wrong." He tries to head her off at the pass. Damn he knows her so well.

He does. The mention of that moment (how had she convinced herself he must have forgotten by now?) brings a ready blush to her cheeks, her mouth opens to speak but her voice is all trapped in her throat, giving him plenty of time to get in his assurances. She can't quite make herself look at him, still, which is probably more indication of what's going on in her head than anything she could happen to say. She tries, once more, to say something, anything: "Ah—!" she manages a… noise. "Well… yes. It was… dazzling, sharing that. I suppose there must have been something there before… since I certainly didn't react that way when I heard the news from the Brother. In fact… I mostly doubled over in pain when he told me," she muses awkwardly.

Dane's fingers tap against his temple a few times and then stop, pressing softly into the flesh to massage it. It's a subtle maneuver as he shifts his eyes around a bit. From her desk, to her mug collection, to where she keeps her horribly cheesy pop music. Then, like a slot machine, his eyes fall on her. "…I thought…" He says, looking to the side and then back to her. "…I just never knew. I mean…I had suspicions but I wanted to respect your decision. So I…" He trails off.

Greje just sort of tries to smile an awkard-looking smile to her plants, as if to say she wished she had thought to smoke up before this meeting. "It's alright, Dane," she replies quietly. "It was right for us to get over it when it happened. The timing was just… poor, that's all. Like I said, Aphrodite and I have never particularly gotten along outside of our professional relationship. I think she just likes to have her fun with me. I'm quite used to keeping the Lady entertained," she adds with a more broad sort of grin, though she still can't lift her eyes. "I thought I was perfectly over it, too. Then all of a sudden, well— you know I've always had a weakness for athletes. Your game may need brushing up, but, Lords, if you don't know how to fill out a jersey." She tries to laugh, to lighten the mood. It gets mostly smothered under more blushing.

Dane bites his lip and chuckles a little, sliding his hand from his temple to brush over his eyes as he smiles a little, red faced. Taking in a deep breath, he lets it out. "I know…I probably shouldn't be saying this…" He says, making a mental note to go see Eve. "…but that aspect of our ongoing relationship I think has been a source of enjoyment for Aphrodite." He pauses. "Awkward, then not awkward, awkward, and then not again. It's like trying to wrestle a crocodile covered in motor oil." He pauses, taking a moment as he mentally swears at himself inside of his head. "…yeah…my game does need brushing up."

"That's… that's my fault. I think I'm physically incapable of not making an awkward mess of myself around someone I feel interest toward," Greje admits. "And when I can convince myself I'm over it, then I'm fine. And then somthing happens, and then I'm not. I think… no, I know that's why I pushed you for this wedding, early on. I just thought, if you got married, I'd -have- to actually really trully finally -fully- get over it, and then everything would be fine again. I… told myself it was fine for me to urge you along when I was urging everyone else to use caution, because you're Dane, and walk Apollo's path, neither straying too far to the left nor to the right," she sighs. "But then I realized that wasn't at all fair or right. But then I started worrying that I was pushing you too hard to re-consider… out of self-interest? And so I started pushing for it again— but was I just overcompensating for the other impulse? That's why I wanted to get you with Evelyn. I was driving myself crazy worrying. Because in the end this decision can't be about me, one way or the other. It needs to be about you and her, and whether this is right."

Dane turns his eyes back to Greje about halfway through her explanation and watches her quietly through the rest of it. Breathing slowly, he leans forward and rests his elbows on his knees and folds his hands together a bit to watch her. Squaring his jaw just a little bit, he looks to the floor as if he'd actually find and answer there. When she finishes, he takes a few soft breaths before he responds. "Frak…" He says to himself, softly biting the inside of his cheek. Breathing in again, he sits back and clears his throat. "You know…" He says, starting up a little speech. "I…" He pauses. "When we first met…correction…when you came to me in the Panther and asked if I would partake in the rites, my parents would have been falling all over themselves to let them contact you to arrange a courting." He chuckles. "You've kept vigil for me every time I've been out in the fire and I've always felt that this has kept me alive to some degree, because I know you're praying while I do on the field." His lip tugs into an awkward little smile as he explains. The smile fades. "You've never been unfair with me Greje…never."

Greje manages to peek at Dane— just long enough for her heart to jump uncomfortably up into her throat. Yeah, the awkward is there. Her fingers look like they're attempting to reconstruct the Gordian Knot, and her insides aren't doing much better, the stress making her ulcer send out a few dully stabbing pains. She manages a 'heh.' "Arranged courtship. It sounds so much easier than dating. I think that's the reason why Aphrodite works so well for me in a ritual context. It's… all planned. Sure, sometimes there are surprises, but you're in the Goddess' hands, you have a sense that you know what you're doing… not just… flailing around on your own trying not to look silly mid-flail." Digression finished, she just shakes her head, "Will you go see Evelyn, Dane? I— really, if you want to get married, I'll be -alright,-" she says, maybe a mite too forcefully. Maybe just trying in vain to undo the last portion of the conversation. "I just need to know you made your decision based on good reasoning of what marriage will be between you and Nico, and not because I pushed you or gave you biased advice. That's very important to me, Dane. I want you to do what's best for you."

"You didn't push me or give me biased advice…" Ramiro replies, leaning forward to rest his elbows on his knees again. He folds his hands together and rests his chin on them, looking to the floor. He breathes in and then outwards again, letting it out as a sigh. He then nods a few times. "Yeah…I'll go see the doctor." He says with a look of concentration on his face. He looks up and towards Greje again, watching her closely. He opens his mouth as if to say something and then closes his mouth again. His brain stalls. "I always thought…" He pauses. "…frak."

"It… I tried, Dane, I really did. But it felt biased from where I was sitting," Greje sighs, "It may not have influenced your decision, at all… or it may have in ways you don't consciously know. But either way, the Lords have their way of letting me know when I've done wrong. So please accept my apology; I should have realized earlier, and sent you on ahead to Evelyn when you first came to me with the decision you had to make. But it's too late for that, now." She attempts another glance at the brain stall. Yeah, she knows that feeling. "Frak is right. Evelyn suggested I run off amongst the civilians to get laid. I'd go back to Aphrodite, but I'm cresting the fertile days of my cycle now, and— yes, that's not something I need." Yes, if you were ever wondering how any one person spends eight months working at a Temple of Aphrodite and never ends up knocked up, it's a simple matter of keeping good track of the cycle and taking other duties during those dangerous days.

"No no no…" Dane says, rising, shaking his head. "Greje, no…don't." He stands to full height, running a hand through his hair to stop as his fingers clamp down a little on the back of his neck. "I mean, yeah I accept your apology but I don't think you've done anything wrong. You're trying to help me find what's best for me and…frak…awkward as it is, telling me the truth tonight is going to be a part of it. You didn't push me to anything but you know me well enough to know when I'm not exactly in my zone, and I have to admit that it's true that I've been off base. It's a fact. It's a fact that I have to admit to myself. Its fair. It would be wrong for me to not use the logic and reasoning given to us and put it to use here. It's a critical moment." He pauses. He mouths the word 'frak' again to the floor. He looks to her. "Greje? I'm not going to torment you. I care too much for you to do that. Don't be upset or afraid. Don't worry. I'm taking your advice. You've done nothing wrong. But…" He looks to the door. "…I should probably end this conversation and go speak with the good Doctor before I say anything that throws me too far east or west." He looks to her. She can take that as she will. "Don't do anything I wouldn't do in the meantime." He gives her a genuine smile and then turns, stepping out the door.

Greje looks up in absolute terror as Dane says that all this will effect his decision, "Dane— no— seriously," she locks eyes with him. Serious, now, and worried. "Please just sort this out between you and Nico. If it's right, it's right, and if it's not, it's not. That's what matters. Figure that out -first.- We can deal with whatever afterward if we need to," she tells him, then just sort of goes back to nodding as he takes his leave. "Find your path, Dane," she tells him as he goes. Would Dane smoke up at a moment like this? She doubts it somewhat, though she doesn't know for sure— so she just tries to make tea, her hands all shaky. Tea's good.

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