Summary: After quickly meeting Isabeau, Rhea and Zaharis have time to talk about life.
Date: 12 BCH (31 October 2008)
Related Logs: None

Viewing Deck Support Station PAS - Deck 4
13 BCH 2185 Souls

As the rings on the station rotate slowly, it is never really felt, but the viewport allows a wonderful viewing of space. Here, the four, large panels give a showing that is worth just sitting and watching the stars float by. Seating is more of a lounge, than a theater type. All couches are bolted down, but extremely comfortable for sitting and relaxing. There is even a mini-refreshment bar along the back wall, which is self-serve.

The lights on the observation deck have been turned down a bit to allow the ambient light from the view a chance to reign supreme, if only for a moment. Standing near the port, Isabeau is lite similarly by reflected light from outside. Other than the tapping of one fingernail on the handle of a black valise, she might appear quietly relaxed.

Zaharis found Rhea somewhere after duty shift ended - 'shift ending' of course being a very fluid term for two department heads. His duty shirt unbuttoned to ward off any temptation for someone to approach him on work matters, he's nonetheless carrying an armload of folders to go over while they attempt to enjoy some quiet. "…so did they find the problem?" He's asking the ChEng as they walk in, for what else does one ask a ChEng?

Rhea is still carrying her clipboard around, so even off-duty she hasn't exactly gone restful. She's still in her uniform, though she's at least unbuttoned the jacket, and washed a layer of engine grease off her hands. She shakes her head at Zaharis, as she answers for whatever they're discussing. "Not yet. It's a hell of a puzzle." She sounds almost gleeful as she says that. "Major Carter's loaning me some contractors from the Genesis to poke at it. Once we shake it down, I'm sure we can decipher something."

As the voices are not exactly lowered, they carry. Turning, Isabeau flickers an appraising glance at both Zaharis and Rhea, and for a moment indecision tuches her gaze. Then, shifting the valise from one hand to the other, she turns and salutes. "Captains." Her voice is low, melodic and coolly professional.

"Whatever are you going to do when you don't have contractors around to snap the whip at?" Zaharis smirks at Rhea. He's patting his back pockets for his cigarettes when he hears the third voice in the room, glancing around. Aha. A glance at pins. "Evening, El-Tee. Hope you weren't trying to meditate in here."

Rhea blinks when she's saluted on the obs deck. She returns it, rather wearily, saying a quick, "At ease, Lieutenant. I…assume you're off-duty. I certainly am. Nothing's broken up here, is it?" Her gaze shifts around, warily. For stray wires or sparking things.

Isabeau releases the salute with a snap that is far too official, "No, sir. I just arrived and was told to wait for the CO here to report in." Her gaze flickers from one to the other and her manner slowly unbends a little bit. "No, ma'am. Not until I report in, at any rate. And, no… Nothing is broken as far as I am aware." Taking a slight step forward, she eases a little more, "It seems that I am the one interrupting, however. You were talking. Please excuse me."

Zaharis takes the opportunity of Isabeau's long explanation to light his cigarette, and tuck the lighter into one of his side pockets. He glances at Rhea, then back at Isabeau, shaking his head. "Relax, El-Tee. Welcome up, in that case." He studies her a moment, tilting his head. "I'm guessing not a pilot."

Rhea chuckles. She can't help it. "Relax, Lieutenant. This is your territory, anyhow. We're just visitors to the station. Technically, you can shoo us if we get out of line." She gives Isabeau a longer look, playing Zaharis' little game of Guess-the-Job. "A pilot would be at the bar right now, I think. I'll go with…Support. You're not in Logistics, are you?" The prospect brings a smile to her face.

Isabeau's delicate brow lifts slightly and her lips begin a faint smile, "No, sir. I am not a pilot. I am with the JAG's office. Assigned to PAS Station." Stepping forared once more, she shakes her head, "No, ma'am." Extending a hand, she adds, "Isabeau Agagon de Castile y Vargas. Isabeau works, if I am off duty. Or Isa. Not Izzy, please. I am with the JAG's office, assigned to PAS station. It is a pleasure to meet you both."

"Likewise, Isabeau." Zaharis extends his right hand, shaking hers once. "Captain Jesse Zaharis, I'm the CMO over on the Genesis. Call me Jesse, Doc, whatever. And you'll pardon me if I say I hope we never have to meet in on-duty capacity."

"Isabeau, then. Welcome to our little corner of space." Rhea's own small, calloused hand is extended for shaking, once the JAG's done with Zaharis. "Captain Rhea Zimmermann. ChEng on the Genesis. We're all of acronyms here. Call me Rhea, please."

Isabeau chuckles, her grip firm, if brief, "Likewise, Jesse. I can think of nothing less pleasent than needing to be seen by the medical staff. Or, needing to represent the same in court." She shadows the good doctor a quick wink, then turns her attention to the ChEng and the round of handshakes continues, "A pleasure, Rhea. Thank you both. It is a bit of a change from my last posting, I confess."

Zaharis smirks at Rhea's acronym comment. "Acronyms. Save time, keep you young." He slides himself into one of the seats, dumping the armload of folders down on a table. "Oh, yeah?" He looks back at Isabeau and lofts a dark brow. "Where are you transferring from?"

[Intercom] Lieutenant Aragon, this is Specialist Quinn in the JAG Office. We have an urgent memo here for you that requires your attention.

"Navy efficiency at it's finest," Rhea returns to Zaharis, as to acronyms. To Isabeau, she nods. "It's quite a bit different than most postings. But I suspect you'll find the assignment intriguing. Major Carter seems a good CO, which is about all one can hope for." Brows arch as the word of memo. /Definitely/ JAG business.

Isabeau parts her lips to reply to Zaharis when the intercom sounds. "Hmmm. So much for getting time to settle in, eh?" She smiles at both of you, "The JAG office on Libris, Jesse. My family is there, so it was a lot more informal." She chuckles at Rhea's assessment, "I hope that my portion is less intriguing, actually. Intriguing in the law tends to mean that someone has found a way to do something phenominally foolish that is new and different. Although it is interesting, it usually means headaches for someone. Usually me." Another wink is offered and the woman turns for the door, "Will you both excuse me, please? Seems I am wanted.

Zaharis gives Isabeau a quick nod, not one to stand in duty's way. "Of course, El-Tee. Have a good one. Welcome to the cluster." He sets his feet up on the table as she gets ready to leave, pulling a folder onto his lap.

Rhea inclines her head to Isabeau. "Good luck, Lieutenant. Don't catch yourself on the paperwork."

Isabeau lifts a wave and tosses a quick grin over her shoulder, then straightens and is all business.

Isabeau leaves for Passageway [o].
Isabeau has left.

Zaharis slouches comfortably in his chair, flipping through pages in his folder as the cigarette smoulders. "Note to self. Sucks to be a JAG."

Rhea winces a little as she watches Isabeau go, slouching down herself across from Zaharis. "Memos. Frakking paperwork. The JAG office would kill me, I suspect." She flexes her fingertips, as if picturing a million tiny papercuts. "So, Carter got you slaving for him over here?"

Zaharis shakes his head. "Their medical bay is technically my domain, as are the bays on these other tin cans. Anywhere anyone's in uniform, there I am to wreck the day." He doesn't sound the least bit broken up about this. "Keeps the higher-ups from having to listen to more bitching than necessary, I guess. But what about you, are you ever going to work on the Genesis again?"

"King of all things medicinal?" Rhea teases Zaharis. "Dictatorship suits you." At his last question, she chuckles dryly. "One of these days. I actually need to bury myself in Main Engineering. Crawl into that marker buoy the Raptor pilots brought back for a few hours. With the structural guys Carter loaned me for the Pandora, I should be able to spend a night or two at home again." Not that she's complaining. Rhea's permanently set to 'busy.'

Zaharis grins, scribbling on the sheet in front of him and closing the folder. Toss, next one taken with a drag of the cigarette in between. "Reece must be livin the high life with mom busy. You'll catch a break, come back, and he'll be in a pimp suit, hawking candy on the childhood black market."

Rhea snorts at that image, shaking her head. "My flesh and blood would never be seen in a pimp suit. I've seen his laundry. Any flash has been long-abused out of it." She lays back against her chair, her expression growing more serious. "I /think/ he's getting used to things here. Do you think he's doing all right? At least he can't get into too much trouble on the station. But he was doing so well on Picon. I'm not sure how fair it was to drag him out here."

Zaharis shrugs slightly, setting his pen down and flexing his cramped fingers. "I don't know. I haven't been over as much as I should." He's always felt that loyalty thing to Ephraim, which has been long extended to Ephraim's son. "You know, I'm supposed to have an actual break tomorrow. I'll take him swimming or something, see if I can get him to talk about stuff."

Rhea smiles. "He'd like that. There aren't that many kids his own age here. You can always be counted on to impersonate a twelve-year-old." Her smile quirks, teasing, but she's honestly grateful. "I am glad you're here. He acts like he knows the drill, but he misses his father. He and Ephraim had their own little boys club on Picon for a few years. Maybe it's selfish, but I'm enjoying having him here. It's amazing how much he's grown. He's reminding me more and more of his father, in a lot of ways."

"My impersonation's shit. I was at least fifteen or so before I started smoking," Zaharis smirks, pulling the ashtray onto the arm of his chair. He takes a slow drag off it, the smoke curling lazily upwards towards the vents in the ceiling as he listens to the rest. "That's what boys are supposed to do. I see plenty of Ephraim in him. And I can tell he'd sooner kick someone in the knee that listen to anyone badmouth his folks."

Rhea's eyes narrow at Zaharis. Fifteen? Her brows arch. "I'm told boys are easier to deal with than girls once they hit their teen years. I'm highly skeptical." But she's obviously proud of her spawn. "He's a good kid. I just want to do as right by him as I can." But there's something else on her mind, judging from the sly way she's looking at the doctor. "Speaking of personal lives, you seem to be spending a lot of time with that blonde medical contractor."

"Ohhhh, I was waiting for you to go there." Zaharis stretches his back a bit as he talks. It makes one of those soft, irritable cracks of the start of the slide into middle age. "Ease your mind, nothing's happened."

Rhea doesn't so much as smirk at creaky Zaharis. She's creeping up on the forty mark faster than she'd like, herself. "And why not?" she asks him, still half-teasing. "Because her daily routine doesn't consist of drinking Aerelon martinis and wearing a tube top?"

"Whoa, you remember that one?" Zaharis rests his head back, smirking at the ceiling. "Sheila. Wasn't that her name…no, Shelly. Whatever."

"It was Sheria. She is seared into my memory," Rhea deadpans, as if permanently scarred. She shakes her head, chuckling. "One of these days, Doctor Zaharis, you are going to meet a woman whose bed you can't flee from in time. And Ephraim and I will both get a good laugh out of it."

"Sheria. Oh, yeah." Zaharis squints a little at the viewport. "And there I'd gone for years thinking lawyers all had flat asses from sitting so much, but…phew."

Rhea sighs in mock-exasperation, aiming a teasing kick across at Zaharis' chair. "You are appallingly undomesticated," she says wryly. Knowing he'll probably take it as a compliment.

"I am not," Zaharis moves his leg but it's lazy, and her kick still lands. "I can make toast, you know." He keeps his elbow on the arm of the chair, drawing on the cigarette and exhaling in a long, thin stream. Nothing else in his defence comes from his mouth, his eyes just watching the planet turn.

Rhea just shakes her head, but it's a fond sort of shaking, folding her own feet comfortably under her in the chair. Once she's done kicking. Her own gaze travels out the viewport. "I can never get over how beautiful a planet looks from up here. I remember the first time I left Sag. On my way to basic. I'd never even imagined some of those colors existed. Of course, a lot of it was from the smog. But still, it looked pretty. Makes everything seem…smaller."

"Guess everything's prettier when you look at it from a ways away." Zaharis crosses his booted feet on the table. "What's it they say? 'Romance increases with distance', or something like that."

Rhea snorts at that. "I've never enjoyed distance all that much. It does give you some perspective, though." She smiles. "Though maybe you have a point. I remember when I went back to Picon to pick up Reece. Right before Ephraim left for the Persius. I felt like we were newlyweds again. We even got to talking about having another kid, whenever we wind up in the same place for more than a few months."

Zaharis stubs out the cigarette, rolling his head against the chair to peer at her. "Seriously?"

Rhea nods. "Yeah. It surprised me, too, actually. I mean, things'd gotten better between us but I didn't think we were *quite* back there, yet. It was like he was trying to win some husband of the year award or something." She laughs. "Not that I'm complaining. Maybe the prospect of spending a couple years in space made him think about things differently."

"Yeah, maybe." Zaharis glances at his fingers, picking off a shred of fingernail that he'd managed to tear. "He was always good with the whole foresight thing, you know. Logistics." He hehs, quietly. "Wouldn't kill Reece to have a brother. Or sister, those happen too. Who knows, life's unpredictable."

"He did well enough with the dog," Rhea jokes, though she's clearly serious about the idea itself. She laughs. "I never thought a kid would be something I'd actually try to *plan* on." Reece was /not/ intentional. "My own mother wasn't exactly the greatest role model. But I wouldn't mind another. A daughter would be nice. Might not be exactly *practical*. Ephraim and I aren't kids anymore. But he was all pumped about starting fresh." She snorts. "I thought for a second he'd started popping stims, he was so excited. Solitude is definitely *not* good for that man."

Zaharis spends a little time biting off the rest of the ragged nail, tossing the bits onto the floor. "Well, you know. Men wake up and go 'Oh shit, I'm thirty-five, must turn clock backwards', and it all goes wacky from there for a while. But you know him…he'll calm down. Get another dog. I hear they're about the same amount of work in the early years."

"Ephraim's never been the wacky type," Rhea says firmly. "And I'd *like* to think he's too young for a mid-life crisis. It's not like he's out buying motorcycles or cliff-diving or anything. Unless there's something you aren't telling me." She winks, laughing at the idea. It's clearly not one she takes seriously.

"There's plenty I'm not telling you," Zaharis replies in a light tone. "But that's my job. You wouldn't find me half as fun to talk to if I didn't know all Ephraim's dirt." He smirks.

Rhea smirks, laughing some more. Amused at the idea of her accountant husband's dark secrets. "I don't even *want* to know what you and Ephraim were doing before he and I met. I think everyone concerned is happier that way."

"You are a very, very smart woman, Rhea," Zaharis says, with exaggerated emphasis. "I can see how you managed to lure him away from his accursed life of debauchery and sloth."

Rhea rolls her eyes. "Oh, yeah. A doctor and an accountant. I bet you two were the geeky *terror* of Fleet Academy." The image makes her giggle. So cute.

"Word. Brothers in Pocket Protectors, that was us." Zaharis' voice is dry, but amused. "Class homies, terrors of the Calculus 301 Back Row."

Rhea grins. "I bet you were at that, come to it. I think I'm probably lucky you boys met. He needed someone to get him to let his hair down a little. And I'm sure he was handy to have around. For bail money and all."

"What are you talking about? That was a 'not guilty'." Zaharis darts his narrowed eyes back and forth. "More like he needed me for parking ticket money. I mean holy frak, for a guy that could recite pi to like 50 digits, he couldn't calculate the angle to parallel park worth shit."

Rhea snorts. "He still can't. You'd think, since he drives like an old woman, he could manage to stay within the lines. I think he married me so he'd have someone to park the car and fix the microwave."

"Good thing he's on a battlestar, then. Just pray they don't let him drive it." Zaharis sits up and shoves the rest of his folders into some semblance of 'a neat pile'.

"Oh, I suspect he's keeping plenty busy making sure the ship doesn't run out of food, fuel and cigarettes. And gods-knows what else. The amount of work that goes on in a Logistics room makes me dizzy." Rhea sighs, eyes drifting back out to the planet. "I miss him, Jesse."

Zaharis shoves the pile aside and rests his arms on his knees. "What was that about distance?" He glances over at her and smiles. It's just a light jab though. "You'll see him again soon. You know it'll be that much better to finally settle down and all that knowing you got to do stuff you wanted to do. And you still stayed strong."

"Yeah. That's us. Solid and distant," Rhea says dryly. "Maybe it's time for something else." Her manner promptly turns light again. Enough to needle the doctor, at least. "One of these days, I might even manage to set you up successfully. You're a doctor. Women like that. I could trick some unsuspecting girl into it, I'm sure."

Zaharis rolls his dark eyes a little, though his drama is the usual tone. "Ever occurred to you that if I wanted some new zest in my life, I'd…oh, I don't know…go get it?"

"You get it plenty," Rhea says wryly, smirky again. "That's never been your problem." She sits back in her chair, regarding him. "I just…want you to be happy. You're a good man. You deserve somebody who appreciates that. Not…bimbo lawyers and girls whose names sound like cocktails."

Zaharis keeps his arms on his knees, spreading his hands. "Okay, but…why do you think I'm not happy? I'm not lonely. I'm not pining away. You're the one in the room missing someone, not me."

Rhea frowns. Point. She takes a moment to formulate her argument. "Fair enough. Sorry. I don't want to become one of those cliche married people who acts like it's the road to happiness. It's hard. It can be nice sometimes, though. I just want to make sure you're treated proper. But, I will leave you be in your state of single bliss."

Zaharis smirks, shaking his head as he fishes another cigarette from his pack. "Sometimes I can't wait for Reece to grow up so you can spend your energy like this on him instead of me."

That idea makes Rhea frown some more. "I don't think I have to worry about *that* quite yet. He's not even…" Frown. He /is/ nearly a teenager. She snorts. "Anyway. If he ever asks you for words of wisdom about women, you have my permission not to tell me a thing about it. That's another thing I sense I'm better off not knowing about."

"Wasn't planning on it. You want to be privy to the dark secrets of your spawn, have a girl." Zaharis stretches out his arms. Smoke curls up over his fingers as he wrinkles his nose. "Besides, I'm leaving it to Ephraim to school his flesh and blood in the ways of the woman. Obviously, he didn't do too bad. Even if he probably doesn't remember all of the beginning."

"He seemed well-trained enough by the time I got him," Rhea says, of her husband. She watches the smoke curl. "Though it did take me a couple of years to get him to stop smoking."

Zaharis lifts the cigarette hand, shaking a finger at her. "He smoked before I ever met him. I just want to make that abundantly clear."

"In high school. I've seen the pictures," Rhea says wryly. "Back when his hair was longer than Reece's and he had appalling taste in jackets. There's nothing quite like the captain of the Mathlete team trying to look cool."

Zaharis snorts. "No, but you have to admit, it was sort of…its own weird primal mating call." He gestures to her, as if to say 'duh, look'.

Rhea grins crookedly. "It is kind of cute. Gods, did he ever tell you about the first 'gift' he ever got me? It was a back-up generator. We were both ensigns on the Solaris. It was my first post as an officer. *Nothing* worked right. I'd spent months trying to requisition the thing through my CO but there always seemed to be another priority. I was complaining about it over lunch one day and, when the next supply ship rolled in, there it was. Convinced me to go out with him, at least."

Zaharis exhales a short sloud of smoke, replying quite deadpan. "That's disgusting, Rhea."

"What?" Rhea gasps, eyes widening innocently. "I thought it was sweet. And I figured it couldn't hurt to have a friend with access to the quartermaster's office."

"Yeah, I'm sure that's exactly what you were thinking," Zaharis smirks, with a wink and nod at her. "Quartermaster's office, huh? The extra supplies of pillows came in handy, I'm sure."

"You have no romance in your dark, ash-filled soul," Rhea says, feigning sympathy. "It's sad." She kicks at his chair again, apparently not feeling /all/ that sorry for him. She stretches. "I should drop in on the kid while I'm over here. Make sure he's doing his homework. And not requisitioning anything bigger than a pair of skates."

Zaharis deftly avoids her kick this time. He looks at his pile of folders, fortifying himself before reaching for them. Hraaag, hernia. "Yeah, I should get my sorry ass back to the Genesis. Hey, tell Frizzhead I'll come by tomorrow, about thirteen hundred hours."

Rhea stands, stretching. Trying not to creak too much. "I'll pass it along." She strides off the viewing deck, though she adds before she goes, "Thanks." Making time for the spawn means a lot to her.

"Hey, can't let the Zimmerman heir lose too many brain cells." Zaharis stubs out the cigarette and hefts the folders into the crook of his arm. "Us Z's have to stick together." He waves her towards the exit.

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