Mea Maxima Culpa
Mea Maxima Culpa
Summary: Reed and Zaharis talk after Ephraim's death.
Date: 38 ACH
Related Logs: Dum Spero, Spiro Part 3

Naval Officer Berthings Genesis - Deck 12
38 ACH 6285 Souls

Naval Officer berthings are setup with bunks on either side of the area. Each bunk holds two Officers and lockers are between the bunks for their personal items. A table sits in the center of the room with six chairs around it for use in recreation or studying. There is also a shower and changing room off this area.

Reed is laying in his bunk, kind of being asleep at the moment, with his off duty clothes on. Aww napping Major.

Zaharis was completely silent as he came back to berthings, got his towel, and went to shower off the blood still caked under his fingernails and streaked on his face. It takes a few rounds of water-on, water-off. In a clean pair of offduties he heads back to his bunk afterwards, towel over his shoulder. His skin is bright red from the temperature of the water, run and held as hot as it would possibly go. Making no noise, he pulls the curtain to his bunk back and sits down.

Reed vibrates. well, he makes a little 'brrrrrrr' noise, and his eyes open as he reaches to his side and lifts the handheld he tucked there, looking at it, and checking what made it go off. He swallows, then coughs, clearing his throat, setting the handheld on his chest, and looks around. Seeing the Lobster Doctor, he says, "Haven't seen her."

"She was on one of the shuttles coming back. Should be here soon." Zaharis tells Reed without looking over. His low voice lacks intonation, though it could just be from the quiet volume. He heard the coughing, and he adds after a couple seconds, "Do you want some water."

Reed shakes his head, "No. They gave me a cane. Take some of the pressure off my abs, and make me look like an old fart. Kinda like it." He pauses. "There was nothing you could have done, but I don't expect anything I say can help. Still, I am sad for your pain."

"Don't leave your handheld on if it keeps waking you up." Zaharis riffles through the stuff sitting on his bunk shelf. Something glass makes a soft clink. "You should be resting."

Reed smiles, "I've been resting." He says lightly, "Been enjoying being in a bunk, and relaxing somewhere that has people. That was just a nice midmorning nap after Gaelan came to see me finally."

"Good." Zaharis pulls some book off the shelf and sets it on the mattress by his leg. "You'll be fine soon. Patience and you'll be fine."

Reed nods, "I have patience. More now that it feels like I'm more active in my own recovery." He looks at Zaharis. "So you going to just swallow all of it yourself then?"

[Intercom] Sergeant Farkas, please report to the marine offices. Sergeant Farkas to the marine offices.

Zaharis doesn't say anything for a few seconds. He's doing something with that book, impossible to see as it's hidden from view by his leg. "Rhea is going to need you. Don't know if she knows he was alive."

Reed looks at Zaharis, "She's going to need you, too, you know. It's the three of us, that's our support net. You're the only one not letting the others help."

"Help with /what/." Zaharis finally looks over at Reed's bunk. "The eels were pretty cool and all, Carter, but resurrection's a bit beyond modern science, don't you think?" That came out sharper than he intended it to, and he reigns his tone in. "She has me. I keep my promises."

Reed doesn't rise to the tone, "No, we can't bring the dead back, but when they die, it hurts the living. You're in pain, and insist on sticking it out alone. You know better than that. You can't go it alone and expect anything but more pain. You already know all this. You care for others, and take your solace when they get better, but that's only one side of healing. it's a stopgap measure. you need to let someone else care for you, and give them that solace as well as let yourself work out the pain you're going through."

"I don't have the right to." Zaharis' hand rises from the book, sliding something into his pocket, and the cover's shut hard. "I'm not in my bunk having come out of a coma and in pain. I'm not the one who's just lost a husband for the -second- time. I'm not anyone except someoen who's not doing his frakking job for his ship and for his friends. I couldn't even tell Rhea what really happened. Marines have probably told her by now, so she gets to find out from someone else that I let her husband die. That's what a wonderful person I am, Carter. So hell with all this, whatever it is I deserve it. She'll be back soon and you should be saving your energy."

Reed frowns, looking at Zaharis, "What frakking orbit are you flying in that you think that way? you've saved more lives than most of the people on this ship. Mine for one simple example. You, like it or not, are an incredible asset to this fleet, and you're surrounded by people willing and able to help you, who want to help you. Who are demanding to help you, but you're not letting them. I know you well enough to know that if there's any possible way you could have saved him, you would have done it. You don't deserve the pain, so knock off the masochistic penance bullshit. It's not going to fly with anyone. The way you're letting down everyone is by holding your distance from them, leaving them out in the cold to suffer on your own, and not letting them take some of the weight off you. All that you're doing is pushing yourself into a corner that's going to end up with you having a nervous breakdown or using again."

"You weren't there!" Zaharis throws the book back on the shelf, knocking over a few smaller things sitting there. "He was alive, he was talking, he was looking right at me. He should have been able to talk to Rhea. He should have been able to see his son. But he didn't, he died in /my/ frakking hands and she never got to see his eyes open and I /couldn't even tell her/. I killed her husband." Those words seem to stop him for a second, breaking his entire tone as though he'd just fired his sidearm into his own gut. "You know she asked me to be Reece's godfather? He could've had /his/ father back…he could've been so happy. But no, he's dead. And I was right there. And I didn't stop it." He grabs the metal brace of the bunk above him, standing up and grabbing his boots from under his bunk.

Reed narrows his eyes, pushing the handheld off his chest, turning in the bed, to sit up carefully, "That's bullshit. You sent me that report. Bullet through the spine? Bone shards in the heart? You wanna tell me how you could have saved him? How it was your fault? He was killed by who pulled the trigger, not by you. You're not Hades, you don't keep the dead prisoner, you don't have the power over life and death, and there's some things just past you. You have to accept that this is one of them. Even when you'd trade places with him if you could, it's not going to happen if you let yourself die."

Zaharis turns around to look back at Reed, his eyes making a few rapid blinks against the stinging plaguing them. "He was alive. He had a breath left in him. He could have gotten to tell Rhea he loved her…she could've had her husband for five minutes. She could have said good-bye, she could have that closure we wanted her to have, and she didn't get it. I took it away from her." He's not angry anymore, his body just shaking now. "I would do anything for her…/anything/…and when it counted the most it could ever count in the world, I didn't. I didn't." He points to Reed's bunk. "Lie down. I'm not going to hurt you too." Anything further Reed tries to say is going to hit his back, as he turns on his heel and heads briskly for the door, carrying his boots.

Reed grunts as he rises, slowly, "Just don't frakkin.." He sighs as he reaches his feet, secure, and soundly, he's gotten that far, but these damn young whippersnappers running off. He looks at the hatch, "It wasn't your fault." He says at the hatch, before frowning, looking at the bunk the Doctor just left.

The hatch is already closed by the time Reed gets his last words out. One can hope the hatch, at least, is comforted.

Reed closes his eyes, letting out a sigh, and proceeds to reverse his motion, settling back into his bunk, "Frakkin.. I'm gonna get better, then I'm gonna get stronger, then I'm gonna hit him upside the head."

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