Of Faith and Visions
Of Faith and Visions
Summary: Greje and Karan engage in theological debate, and discuss their shared vision.
Date: 58 ACH
Related Logs: None

Naval Officer Berthings Genesis - Deck 12
58 ACH 23817 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.
----< Condition Three - Duty Area >----—-

Reed looks at Grejes uniform and blinks, then takes his handheld, "Frak, my laundry!" He pulls on his boots, and rises, heading out quickly, "Right back." He says, on his way out.

Greje pulls off her sweatshirt and ridged tank top, folding them together and tucking them into the mesh clothes hamper hanging inside her locker, then draws on a clean cami, kicks off her shoes and unbuttons her pants. While she changes she humms a little to herself, singing a few words here and there— evidently a hymn about Apollo in triumph after the slaughter of the Python and the establishment of his Pythian oracle.

Zaharis opens the heavy textbook on the table once Reed's gone and Greje goes to change. The small parcel she gave him remains unwrapped, his right hand resting on it as his attention goes back to the dry medical information he's reading.

Reed returns a few minutes later with a cloth bag of laundry in one hand, it's about halfway full and he looks thoughtful, "Strange, when I got there, it was mostly folded by Chalders. I'm running into old PAS people all the time these days."

A faint tinkling accompanies Karan's arrival into the berthings, not too far after Reed. He's dressed in ritual robes, dark and voluminous, with strings of onyx, jet and quartz ornamenting his wrists and throat. It's sure to have drawn a few stares during his trip over here. He nods politely to those who might look his way, and heads for the lockers. Greje receives a slightly more familiar greeting of 'sister'.

Greje pulls on her uniform slacks and fastens them before unfolding the jacket the rest of the way. She looks up and puts a pause to her museful singing to smile broadly at Karan, "Brother," she replies, "Good morning."

Zaharis gives Reed a slight smile. His attention gets distracted by the man walking around in robes, the look in his eyes turning unreadable. Back to the book he goes, flipping a page.

Reed looks over his shoulder, blinking at the robed man coming in, then turns back, moving to his locker, opening it and starting to put away his freshly washed, folded clothes.

Karan tugs his locker open, and begins withdrawing clothing: the same officer's uniform, rather than offduties. He looks tired, and his smile reflects it. "Good morning," is returned amiably enough. "I'm afraid I wasn't able to join you on your pilgrimage. Not in person, anyway. I performed a small ritual to Aphrodite Acidalia and Asherah, for you." The door's closed, and he turns toward her with a hint of curiosity. "There is something I'd like to speak with you about. When you have a moment, of course."

Rhea comes in from Corridor 12C.
Rhea has arrived.

Greje buttons up her uniform top and makes certain it's tidy on her, brows rising with a grateful smile, "That was very kind of you, Brother. The Goddess was…" she takes a small breath, "… -very- good to me," she settles on saying, though she almost beams with subtext. Yes, sexy times were had by all. "And certainly. Should we go to the offices before consecration?" she offers, closing up her locker and seeming ready to go.

Zaharis closes the textbook over his fingers, stubs out his cigarette, and stands up. Saying nothing, he pulls his fatigues shirt off the back of his chair and pulls on and over his shoulders, taking care of the buttons one by one.

Rhea is just getting ready to go on duty. She steps out of the shower/changing room area, more-or-less dressed, but her hair is still wet and hanging loose around her shoulders. She towels it semi-dry as she clomps to her locker, to dig out her boots, outer shirt and other on-the-job trappings.

Reed closes his locker once his laundry is put away, and stands, straightening. He looks to Rhea, smirking. "Well, look at you, all clean. Should I make a note of the time? See how long it lasts?"

Karan dips his chin in a nod to Greje. There's a slightly dubious expression in his eyes as he studies her. "I'm glad. And I look forward to hearing about your Revelations, sister." Revelations, indeed. He smiles again faintly and sets down his duty uniform atop his bunk, beginning the meticulous process of removing jewelry. "Let me change, and I'll come with you."

Zaharis isn't about to interrupt either pair in here now. Official fifth wheel! He gathers up the textbook and starts out, just pausing briefly to say something quietly to Rhea. It only takes a second.

Greje gives a chipper little mhmm to Karan and moves to stand with her back to her bunk and wait for him, smiling at Rhea in a friendly fashion before looking to Jesse, then to the parcel still on the table. "You might wish to put that on refrigeration if you're not going to open it soon, Jesse." It's not an accusation, simply a suggestion.

Rhea snorts at Reed, crooking a grin at him. "Some of us work for a living, Major Carter," she needles him, in a playful sort of way. She turns to Zaharis as he passes her, catching whatever he says, nodding shortly. "I'm just going on shift in a minute. Doctor." She offers him a short nod as he goes. Another nod of acknowledgement is given to Greje. Friendly enough, albeit lacking the ease she shows with Zaharis and Reed.

"I'm going to," Zaharis tells Greje. She gets the same slightly distracted nod that everyone else gets as he breezes out. Something's on his mind now.
Zaharis leaves for Corridor 12C [O].
Zaharis has left.

Reed nods to Rhea, "Ah, yes, so noted." He smirks back at her, then looks at Zaharis, then Rhea, lifting a brow, "Problem?" He asks lightly, some concern on his features.

Karan changes quickly, and with the aire of someone who's not so much awkward about doing so with an audience, as not wishing to malinger in the act. Trousers are pulled on before the robe is slid off, then undershirt and jacket and boots. If any happen to glance over, a glimpse might be caught of cuts, bruises and welts that would put a marine to shame.

Greje doesn't glance to the Brother, her attention lingering with Rhea as she tilts her head in subtle echoing of Reed's question.

Rhea shakes her head to Reed as she buttons up, fixing her major's pins in place. "Just work nonsense. Nothing dire, I don't think. Not fit conversation for home, though." She leaves it at that, plucking up a rubber band to tie her hair back with. Fixing it in her standard duty Ponytail of Steel. She does glance over at Karan. Not staring. She's been rooming with men for decades, so gawking has sort of lost its appeal. But he's in her field of vision and those marks are noted. She can't help but wince. The ChEng is no Marine, after all.

Reed nods to Rhea, "Okay." He says, glancing Karan over briefly. He doesn't seem too terribly shocked at the scarring. People who you wouldn't at first think would have scars having them doesn't seem to surprising to him these days. He looks back to Rhea, "We should go do something later, when you're off." He suggests to her.

Clasps clasped, buttons buttoned, Karan briefly rakes his fingers through hair that's a good three or four inches beyond regulation length. One might assume he's an exception to certain rules, considering the earring remains in place as well. Once his robe has been folded and tucked away in his locker, he retrieves the book he entered with. A warm smile's offered Rhea and Reed in turn, though he seems hesitant to interrupt their conversation.

Greje seems relieved by the answer, but, as she wasn't properly part of the conversation before, she doesn't say so, only smiling happily as Reed discusses making plans, and she herself turns toward Karan, and, seeing him evidently ready to go, she starts heading for the hatch. "Have a good day, Majors," she tells Rhea and Reed on her way out.

Rhea returns Karan's smile, politely enough. Whether she's particularly shocked or not, she doesn't gawk. The earrings earns a faint arch of her brows, though. She nods to Reed, smile crooking upward a notch. "Yeah, that'd be nice. Been meaning to take the Sprocket over to the Destiny, now that the work on the water system is winding down. He wants a look at the place. Join us if you like." She responds to Greje's good-bye with a cordial, "Good day, Captain." Actual acknowledgement, and not accompanied by a death stare or anything.

Reed nods to Karan, then lifts a hand to Greje, "See you, Captain." He says, then leans on the locker, nodding to Rhea, "Sounds good. Been wanting to go over there, check on a few things. Most of the traffic on the Comms has been coming through there. Be nice to put a few faces with some names, see what's going on over there."

And without further ado, priest and priestess depart. The sound of soft conversation accompanies the pair, no doubt, as they step out into the corridor.

Rhea heads down the corridors, likely to her darkened Engineering lair, or some other bowel-like corner of the ship.

Greje heads out into the corridor and stretches a little. "Thank you for being here to keep an eye on the flock while I was away. I made the appointment last week, after finally having it drilled through my skull that I needed some rest. But I couldn't help worrying what would happen if I left."

Karan falls into step alongside the woman, with a little smile at her words. "The chapel was.. busy. Though I confess, it's been a while since I was stationed on a battlestar, and I recall military personnel being characteristically avoidant of the Lords."

Greje smiles broadly, "They generally are. I'm glad they were making use of the chapel. Some days it's all I can do to get anyone to step foot in there at all. But I will say that when they come, they tend to come in numbers."

Chaplains Office Genesis - Deck 11
58 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 >----—-

"There is still so much disillusionment. Lack of faith." It's remarked quietly as they walk; Jerome doesn't seem to be in any rush to speak his mind, thoughts are gathered and dispersed slowly. "These people need something to unite them, Sister. Something to drive them, beyond the search for fuel, or scrap metal."

Greje draws her lips together briefly, coming to unlock the Ecclesiastical Offices for the day. Her office is the smaller of the two, that cramped closet jam-packed with books, potted plants, and an orange eyesore. Jerome's office is much larger, with a nice, professional-looking seating arrangement of a couch and two soft chairs, an open and airy space that Greje hasn't touched since the last priest to hold that office was killed except to use it as storage space for ritual garb and ritual items— so there are a good number of boxes stacked in the corners. But she goes into her own closet-turned-office, "Please, come in," she invites him. "I know what you mean— but, again, I feel very hesitant attempting to push religious views on those who don't hold them. That's the quickest way to alienate someone."

Karan's office looks to have been barely touched, in his two days' aboard the battlestar. No boxes moved in there, no dust removed from surfaces. He might have poked his head in there at some point, but it isn't evident either way. He waits until the invitation is made to come in, and then steps inside, hands clasped behind his back as he waits just within the doorway. "It is our responsibility to these people. Our responsibility to the Lords. I hope you aren't suggesting we shirk that duty, Sister." His voice remains gentle, yet there's a slightly disapproving tone to it.

Greje turns the lights on in her office and goes to mist her plants. "Make yourself comfortable… why don't I make you some tea?" she offers, extending ritual hospitality in an effort to diffuse tension. "Our responsibility to the Lords won't be in any way fulfilled by making people afraid of them or their servants," she points out. "We have to be open to them, but we can't jump on them and start acting as if we're better than they are simply because we believe and they don't. Remember that hamartia comes from inappropriate action, not inappropriate thought. They're not trespassing on the Lords or breaking sacred law."

Karan presses his lips together slightly when she mentions hamartia. "Lack of action can be considered hamartia, just like wilful ommission of the truth can be considered a lie." There's a slight nod to the offer of tea, and he takes a deep breath before drawing toward a chair and settling down. "I understand you're a Caprican Academic." The words are spoken as if they're dirty, which is interesting, considering he was educated at Delphi— one of the most upstanding Caprical institutions.

"Only lack of action where action is properly called for," Greje points out, a Caprican Academic with the best of them. "A priest of Artemis who keeps Aphrodite in his heart but does not practice her rites due to his devotion to Artemis is doing no wrong. So a priest of Aphrodite who honors Artemis in his heart but has never been to her temple— he also does no wrong. Therefore one who both declines to engage in ritual action for both Aphrodite and Artemis is engaged in no hamartia, as hamartia is based on actions, not intent. I agree that, say, someone who stains an altar with human blood and who neglects to have it purified… there lack of action would incur hamartia… because the purification is required. But no one is required to attend any given cult or Lord."

Greje keeps an even keel when called an Academic. "And I take it you've more fundamentalist teachings," she replies, politely. "I'm not here to judge you on your religious convictions, and I'd prefer not to be judged on mine. And I'd ask that you extend that courtesy to the rest of the crew, as well."

"One who kneels at the temple of Aphrodite, should have only Aphrodite in his heart at that moment. He should not devote himself to Lords that do not call him, even if he may be in awe of them as is proper, when receiving their blessings. The Lords understand that we cannot serve them all, and must focus our efforts. But to shun the very idea of their existance, and their pull upon us, and their necessity in our lives is to invite their wrath upon us." His chin lifts a fraction, and it seems those last words of the priestess are either ignored, or put aside for the time being. "It is spoken, of the wrath of Demeter upon the Seirenes, upon Askalabos and Minthe. You know the scriptures, Sister, so do not toy with words."

Greje has paused in the middle of making the tea in order to attend this discussion, but as the pot whistles she gets back to it, "I know the scriptures. I know that Minthe attempted to steal Hades from Persephone — an active transgression and act of hubris. As to the Sirens and Askalabos, both of those stories are elements of Demeter's mystery rites, encoded into the text in a manner that is meant to remain unclear to the unindoctrinated. If you would like me to train you and initiate you in the Eleusinian Mysteries, we can make a schedule for that… but for me to explain the full significance of those stories to the uninitiated would be an act of hubris in itself." She looks down to the tea as she finally pours. "And as to the -idea- of the Lords' existance. I think more people honor the Lords than know that they do. After all, those who enjoy the fruit of the vine are thereby enjoying Dionysus, and giving him honor, however informal. Those who enjoy pleasures and attentions of the opposite — or same — gender spend their nights dreaming of Aphrodite in her base essence. Those who devote themselves to becoming finely trained instruments of war do so to becoming instruments of Ares. Those who espouse kindness and justice honor Zeus, in their own way," she could go on, but she moves around to give him his tea. "The Lords are all around us, Brother. They are all that is good and right. Even those on board who only follow the good and the right, then, follow the Lords, in their own way."

Karan listens to all that is said, in that quiet and seemingly complacent way of his. For a servant of Ares, there is a curiously soft nature to the young priest, that speaks of other devotions held perhaps closer to his heart. "I have been initiated in the Eleusinian Mysteries, Sister, thank you. They were used as a parable, I trust you can understand that." A breath, and a dip of his chin when she offers the tea. It's accepted in both hands, long-fingered and somewhat delicate. "Thank you." As ritual would dictate, he is the first to take a sip; an act of trust, in she who serves him. Then, quietly, "The Lords cannot be honoured in ignorance. It is a grave insult-" He avoids the use of the word 'heresy'. "-to suggest that those who do not welcome them into their hearts— or worse, shun them— are yet serving the gods by serving themselves."

Greje perches on the corner of her desk and folds her arms, "I'm sorry, Brother, I didn't realize you were an initiate," she offers calmly. He hadn't mentioned it among his credentials, at least. "Of course they're allegorical. The Sirens represent the memories of those lost to Hades, and their punishment in Demeter's grief led to the immortalization of their wailing… showing us that the deceased are still with us, their presence in our memories both sweet and painful," she argues with him freely, now, since they're both initiates of the rites. "And as for Askalabos, his presence in the text is requisite for the liminal aspect of the rites— though I must admit I'm partial to the baubonic interpretation." Why, yes, she considers more than one version of the transmitted texts. Heretical though that might seem.

Karan doesn't seem bothered by her taking up a perch on the desk, nor by the proximity. He sips his tea quietly, expression remaining neutral; the hint of disapproval's still there, though he engages in the theological debate with both vigour and conviction. "The Book does not recognise that interpretation, Sister." It's spoken tautly, and with an edge of warning. You are treading on thin, thin ice, his steady gaze suggests. "And there is no liminality of the rites of Asclepius, so I have to wonder where you were initiated in the Mysteries." Another sip, still he seems utterly calm. "Is there anything else you wish to confess to me?"

Greje's eyes just sort of bug out of her head when Karan protests that Asclepius' mysteries do not entail liminality. Her mouth opens and shuts a few times in a regular goldfish impression. "Asclepius — the — staff — serpents —" Okay, Karan has made her brain fall out. "How is the very -threshold- between life and death, human and divine, not -liminal-?" she asks. "Liminal — means — pertaining to the threshold," she insists, maybe a little too hard. "I'm not -confessing- to you. There's nothing wrong with attempting to analyze and amend the text to its most pure form. The Lords gave us minds capable of keen thought. We ought to use them." Was that a dig?

Karan seems immune to such things as eyes bugging out, and brains boggling. There's a small frown when she speaks those last words. Certainly there's little other way they could be taken, than in a negative light. "Then you should specify what you mean by such an ambiguous term, in future, particularly when the very meaning of such a word implies ambiguity. It is difficult for me to give you the benefit of the doubt, when you seem to question and reinterpret the tenets of our faith at every turn." Now he's looking more sullen, than anything else.

"Yes, the -term- indicates ambiguity, but the term itself—" Greje begins with energy, then stops. Repositions her hands on her lap. Takes a breath. "I'm sorry, Brother. We shouldn't argue. Especially not now. You're my Brother in the eyes of the Lords, and we don't have the luxury of getting into arguments with one another. We've been tasked to look after these souls, and I respect your views of the Scriptures and your relationship with the Lords." Even if they're wrong-headed as frak, from where she's sitting, but that doesn't come across in her voice. She goes about behind her desk and settles down, "I don't think you've met Dane Ramiro yet. But you certainly will. He's from Gemenon, a devoted follower of Apollo. He should be back from pilgrimage tomorrow, I'm sure you'll like him. A man of great faith," she lets him know. "Also, a young woman named Amalina has come to me with a request for Dionysus' scriptural rites. I'm helping her organize them at the moment, would you like to help preside or to participate?" she asks politely.

Karan doesn't press the issue, nor endeavour to argue it further. His tea is quietly contemplated while she speaks, and if he were any more withdrawn he'd probably be asleep. Which, by the looks of him, is a luxury he's been depriving himself of lately. "That, I can agree with, Sister." He flickers a smile, it seems a little sad. "I will help, if it's your wish. I wouldn't want to step on your toes, though."

Greje offers him one of her usual sort of meek but genuine smiles, folding her hands on her desk and leaning forward. "I'd like that. We haven't finished casting. We've chosen Hippolytus Garlanded— she'll be adopting the persona of Phaedra and I'm trying to get permission for someone from the Tracer to play Theseus. But if someone comes to you who you think would be bettered or learn something about themselves by playing one of the other roles… let me know, okay? We'll get everything arranged… together, alright?" It almost sounds apologetic. Like she really does want to work with him.

Karan seems uncertain. Dare we say, hurt? He meets the priestess' eyes however, and gives her a tiny nod. "Do you have someone for Hippolytus, yet?" Aphrodite and Artemis are not spoken of. It could be considered heretical, by some, to have them personified; he seems to be playing it safe and avoiding an argument, in that regard. Sipping his tea, he's nearly able to hide under that mass of rumpled blonde.

Greje shakes her head. "Dane's offered to do it if we can't find anyone else in a timely fashion. But I don't think he'd get much more from it than a case of stage jitters, so… I'm leaving it open for the time being. If you can help find someone suitable I'd be very glad." She stays away from the topic of the goddesses, as well, and perhaps for the same reasons. The most deeply fundamentalist of Gemenese barely look on Dionysus as anything more than a dark pit of drunken, hedonistic temptation lurking underneath the golden glory of Apollo, but Greje doesn't suspect Karan is -that- bad. "Oh! Let me send you the most recent additions to the Pythian scrolls, while I'm thinking of it." Apollo. Prophecies. There's safe territory if she's ever recognized it. She opens up her laptop to find the file and send it to his account for him to access. "And speaking of… I was granted a vision during Aphrodite's rites, Brother," she smiles faintly but happily. "It was astounding, I — I was never prone to visions. I once stayed on my knees on Apollo's rooftop, sick to the gills with Chamalla for a whole three weeks… and not a thing ever came to me. But during Aphrodite's rites last night, one came to me, of the stone of Zeus, Brother, the Delphic Omphalos in a circle of stars," she shakes her head as if in disbelief as she sends the file. "It was astounding." She sounds pretty astounded, too.

No, he doesn't seem to be one of those, considering he's.. well, considering this. Tentative, but open to the idea. There's another quiet nod from the young priest, another sip of tea that's turned lukewarm in his grasp. News of the scrolls has him smiling with more certainty though, and even looking a little less sleepy. "I look forward to perusing them. Thank you." Of the omphalos, he rests his cup against one knee, and tilts his head a little. "I, too, had a dream, after I had performed the homeric hymns and blessings. I… it was what I'd hoped to speak with you about. What do you think it means?" He, of course, is Gemenese; it's probably the dream of every Gemenese priest, to receive such a vision, an oracular sign.

Greje hms, "I'm not sure, yet. We had heard the hymn of the First Love of Apollo, how Aphrodite taught Apollo desire and how it affected the way the Pythian oracles are taken. I couldn't quite help but think of one of the oracular responses we added to the scrolls when we performed the High Rites here… when the God was asked where we ought to go from here… we… heard something about a sundial fashioned of our mother's thighbone. The bones of the mother… makes sense… the last Deluge and the oracle given to Deucalion and Pyrrha. We, too, are afloat, and must some day come to ground. But this… sundial imagery. The omphalos in the circle of stars reminded me of it. The centrality…" she looks up, "That's wonderful, Brother. What did you see?" she asks.

"The bones of the mother," Karan repeats, brow furrowing softly. His thumb strokes over the rim of his cup, as if it might aid his thinking. "Gaia, the earth mother? The scriptures indicate she is the original Lord behind the delphic oracle, who bestowed her power upon Apollo, who in turn destroyed her child and usurped the chthonic power." He looks up finally, smile creasing the corners of his eyes. "The same thing. The very same thing. Which is astounding, in itself, a vision shared by both of us— I am humbled by it, Sister." He sets his cup upon her desk, and rises, and begins drifting about her tiny office in a seemingly aimless fashion. "But what is the meaning of the sundial?"

Greje nods gently as she considers while he gives his analysis, "Exactly, and —" she breaks off, looking up slowly. "You — it — wait — the same?" she fumbles over her words. "That… at the same time?" That doesn't happen. That… doesn't happen. While Greje seems stuck on the fact, Karan might note a number of books on her shelves with less than stellar reputations. Many banned on Gemenon altogether. There's not much room to drift, of course. A gaping hole manifest in the midst of a collection of texts and discussions on the Monotheistic Heresy makes that section stand out a little. Greje tries to calm herself, beginning to make herself some tea, as well, as her stomach's started to hurt. "The sundial — it… I originally thought it was a complimentary image to the chthonic one. The land below us, the sun rising and falling overhead in order to mark the holy hours and be the heartbeat of our lives. But if this is related…"

Karan nods quietly, gravely, when she fumbles over that sudden realisation. He's obviously more than merely humbled by the notion— he's downright frightened. Maybe it explains the sleeplessness, the dark look that haunts his eyes. "Apollo obtained from the Moirai a privilege for Admetos, whereby when it was time for him to die, he would be released from death.." And he rambles about the possible chthonic significance, fingertip resting on the spine of a book about the denouements of the Minyades. Silence. His lips purse slightly, though he doesn't speak on it. "But Persephone is not my providence. I will do some reading, about what the sundial could mean." He withdraws from the bookcase, and reclaims his chair. There's a heavy sigh, and he looks worn out of a sudden.

Greje leans over her desk a little bit, looking a little woozy, suddenly. "I'm sorry, Brother. My stomach is… upset," she stands, "I think… I… need to go for a walk. And think." She pours the contents of the teaball she'd been filling back into the tea tin and puts things away quickly. "Please. Feel free to stay and read. I —-" she stands quietly and shuffles out, "Pardon me, Brother."

Karan begins to move to his feet again, concern plain on his face. "Do you need to see a doctor?" Thank the gods he isn't Saggitaron, or he might be decrying those, too.

Greje nods wordlessly, and heads out.

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