Sending Them Off
Sending Them Off
Summary: The Air wing holds a private ritual for the deceased pilots.
Date: 67 ACH
Related Logs: Who Bears the Toll? (and) This Didn't Happen

Ares Squadron Berthings Genesis - Deck 12
68 ACH 23817 Souls

Bayless steps into the berthings, already in process of getting the jacket of her dress uniform off, revealing her tanktops underneath. She pulls her hair free of her ponytail and digs in her locker for her fatigues. Wault gets a nod. "Hey."

Wault lifts a hand to return the nod from Bayless. He seems to be just in the process of claiming a vacant bunk bed for himself, as well as the locker next to it. "Hey there," he replies with a smile and reaches over to offer a handshake. "Wault's the name. Transferred today."

Having stopped really quickly by Gold Berthings, Antonio "Cornbread" Sloane is entering just behind Bayless. Already changed, he's got a few packs of cigarettes in his hand that he's donating to the reception. Stretching his arms over his head, he leans to the side a little bit and sets the packs down on the table. They're sealed in plastic, from a private stash. Checking the bottles that he'd made sure were in place, he leans against the wall not far from Bayless. Nodding upwards to Wault, he smiles. "Hey bud…"

Jocasta returns to the squadron berths — her squadron berths — only a few paces behind Bayless and Sloane; seems there must have been a pretty serious to-do for anyone with wings aboard, as most folks are filing in wearing their Dress Grays. Jocasta is no exception. She quietly removes her sash from over her shoulder and heads for her bunk without so much as a word or a whisper to anyone else. Social butterfly, that one. Why so serious, Jojo?

Bayless accepts the handshake a little distractedly. "Rachael Bayless. 'Scorch.'" A nod's sent to Sloane. "Cornbread, one of the Viper drivers. And that…" She points to Jo with a bit of a concerned expression. "…is Jammer. ECO. Sorry if we seem outta sorts, just got back from a memorial for a couple of our guys."

Wault was going to ask about the occasion but Bayless pretty much explains it. "Oh. Sorry to hear that," he offers, nodding sympathetically at Sloane and Jocasta. "Durac Wault," he renews his introduction for those who came in later. "Or just Memnon." Looking around himself somewhat awkwardly for some moments, he lets out a little sigh and continues to unpack his personal items into his locker.

Sloane steps out and around Bayliss as she prepares to change and offers a handshake to Wault as well. Looking to the bottles, he turns back and smiles to the man. "Nice to meet you, Cornbread…" He introduces himself even though he'd been introduced. Etiquette is weird like that. Repeat it while you shake. Sloane turns and watches Jocasta in silence for a moment. He looks to the few packs of cigarettes that are wrapped in plastic and the assembled bottles. "Whatever you do, Memnon, don't tell FireEater that you're new around here." He says, giving Bayless a little grin.

"Who is new around here?" Rue says as she steps in through the shower area coming from the Gold Berthings. Wearing sweats, she's toting a small crate, one that she sets down on the table in the center of the area. "Hope y'all like wine."

Over by her bunk, Jocasta is silently slipping out of her ungodly ugly dress grays and crawling into more comfortable clothes — off-duty olives — all while keeping a quiet eye on the new guy. Her introduction was already made by someone else in her stead, no need to play the echo, even if it is her job description.

Micah arrives a little late to the party, but he certainly wasn't going to show up in those starchy greys, so cut him some slack. Dressed in offduty fatigues, he's damp-haired and carrying a bottle of picon brandy in one hand along with a pack of cigarettes. Make that a half-filled bottle of picon brandy. What's this? Fresh meat?

Bayless cocks a thumb in Wault's direction as she drags her fatigue pants on. "So Wault… you fly or ECO? I ask since you're talking to your squad leader at the moment." A nod is sent in Rue's direction. "CAG too." She looks to Rue. "Wine's fine with me, boss. Think I got some Osiris Falls bourbon in my locker…" She goes to rummage.

"Gettin' pretty used to it sir, I sleep near Too-Tall." Sloane replies quickly with a smirk, turning to watch Rue enter the area with a crate. He motions to the cigarettes. "Brought a few packs from my stash for the smokers so they can do their thing." He adds, leaning against one of the bunks near Bayless and Wault, folding his arms across his chest.

"Good man," Rue fires back at Sloane, clapping him on the shoulder as she finds herself a seat at the table. It takes all of two seconds for her to have it up on it's legs, reclining haphazardly. Wault has her attention then, though her gaze flickers to Micah to perk an eyebrow. "If we have a new guy… you know what you have to do."

"That'd be me," answers the fresh meat, to Rue's question. His gaze darts briefly to the exit. Maybe this is not the best time to meet this bunch, after all. "I can fly, but I'm probably more useful as an ECO." As ranks are revealed, he offers a casual salute to Rue. "What do they have to do?"

Micah ambles on in closer, and sets the bottle of brandy down on the table. The pack of cigarettes follows— still sealed in plastic wrapping— nobody'll blame him for sticking to his own, probably. "You want me to mess up 'is face already, sir?" Rue's shot a grin as he picks a chair and drops himself into it. There's an ominous creak as one hundred ninety pounds meets defenceless furniture. "'e hasn't even looked at me funny, yet." He's joking. Probably.

Jocasta affects a slightly hunched over lean, introducing forearms to knees. Instead of crawling out of her funk and joining the burgeoning festivities, she keeps to her bunk and just gives the rabble-rousing and no doubt soon to be roughhousing crowd a narrowed and possibly tired look.

Rue reaches into the crate, which just so happens to have several bottles of wine. It looks like really cheap stuff. Secured with hay, even. "Glad to have you, then." She tugs the cork on out of the bottle with her teeth (classy!) and puts her thumb over the top, shaking it up as she regards Wault.

Bayless glances over to Jocasta, then makes her way over as the new guy's about to get initiated. "I'd ask if everything was okay, but…" She shrugs, letting the sentence trail off.

Ohhh. Rue was referring to THAT kind of welcome. Micah snatches up the pack of cigarettes and leans back in his chair. Waaay back, thank you very much. He watches Jocasta steadily as he lights up, though doesn't dare approach the woman.

Sloane looks to Bayless and Jocasta for the moment and then decides to provide covering fire for their conversation. Grinning, he moves over to Wault and motions for him to approach the Rue, the CAG. He smiles and pats the man on the back. "How you walk into this is how you're gonna be remembered buddy…"

Wault hates initiations. Not so much what they do at initiations, but not knowing what they are gonna do. "Clueless, nervous and with stitches on my side?" he says in response to Sloane. "Whatever you do, watch for those stitches, ok? I hate needlework on my hide." He even lifts up his hands as if surrendering.

"Now that's no fun. This one has a spine," Rue says with a laugh, before aiming the bottle at Wault and letting go her thumb, spraying him just a -smidge- with the cheap liquor inside. When it stops spraying, she hands the bottle over to him. "We're remembering lost comrades tonight. And I'm afraid I'm going to have to insist that you drink, since I can't."

Novella strolls into the Berthings looking.. even. She's in her off-dutys for now. Its boozin' time. She stops just inside the hatch and moves refelxively out of the way. "Damn. Get started without me?" A smile slowly creeps onto her face as she makes her way to the group.

The significantly less shiny countermeasures officer in the room regards Bayless now slightly from the side and asks, "When's the auction?" in lieu of actually embarking on a conversation she probably ought to be having with, oh, I dunno… a psychiatrist, maybe. Unfortunately, trustworthy medical personnel seem to be in short supply and so Jo's forced to keep everything sucked in and bottled up with only brief reprieve to be had in moments like these. Whee! Avoidance!

Micah chuckles around the cigarette between his teeth, and gives the lighter a flick to extinguish its tiny flame. "Cav!" he barks toward the blonde who's just arriving, "it's not fashionably late, you little frak, if you miss the new guy gettin' hit with a facefull of cheap booze." His eyes rove back to Jocasta again, as if debating something silently.

Bayless glances over to the antics, then back to Jo. "Auction? What're you on about, Jammer?" She leans against the frame of Jo's bunk, getting semi-comfy.

Sloane steps over to Rue and reaches into the crate and starts handing out bottles to everyone. "Toast?" He asks to Rue, being the official passer of drinks to make sure that everyone that can drink has something in front of them. Quietly creeping up to Bayless and Jocasta, he tries his best to offer them their bottles in a noninvasive manner before heading to the table. He grabs a pack of cigarettes and opens them, lighting one and standing by the table.

A sense of relief washes over Wault just as the liquor spray washes down his face. He just closes his eyes and waits for it to end with a little smile on his lips. "Thank you, sir. I'll do my best to make this fine fragrance last as long as possible." Wiping the stuff away from his eyes, he finally opens them and reaches to get the bottle from Rue. The flash of Micah's lighter makes him step away a bit. "Whoa, careful with that. Unless your real initiation ceremony is torching the new guy's face." He lifts up the bottle in a toast then and says, "I'll drink then, for those who no longer can."

Wault's reaction? It's well-received by Rue, who grins and gives him a thumbs up as she reaches for another cheap bottle of wine. The cork is removed much like the last one and she holds the bottle out for Novella. "Can't have a toast without something to drink, Cav."

Alright, look. Debbie Downer though she may be, Jocasta isn't going to refuse perfectly good and legitimate booze just because she's feeling cranky. The bottle Sloane extends is accepted and she even slides a slightly grateful look over to the guy before muttering at Bayless, "Nevermind." Time to drink herself into oblivion.

"Bah! Eat it, Saint Germain." She gives him a middle finger and a smile. "I was busy." She walks past him and shoves playfully at his shoulder. "But I guess that means I've got catching up to do." She stops by an empty chair and takes the bottle from Rue. "Thank you, Major." Then she looks up to the new arrival, whoever he is. "You don't get the sole right, new guy. We all share that responsibility." Not a rude tone, but she does nod to him and glance around to the others. Who's toasting?

Bayless accepts a bottle from Sloane with a nod. "Thanks, 'Bread. Last couple days being what they've been, I need this bad."

Wault takes a swig from the bottle and hands it over to whoever's closest. "I don't mind passing that responsibility along," he answers to whoever it was talking about the responsibility (no name in pose!). "Five year olds can drink me under the table."

Micah accepts a bottle from the passing Sloane, and tugs the cork out with his teeth much like Rue did. It's tossed aside, and he cackles when Novella shoulders past him and forces him to land the front two legs of his chair. "Wrongway, call it!" The toast, that is. He grins up at Savannah.

"I believe Cornbread had one in mind," Rue says, acquiescing with a nod to Sloane. She reaches into the crate and tugs out a grape juice box. It's tugged open and she hefts it, prepped for toasting.

Sloane looks to Jocasta and puts a hand on her shoulder. He squeezes softly and gives her a slight shake. He doesn't say anything, he simply nods to her. Then he looks to Bayless. "Don't miss it." He says and then turns, grabbing his bottle. Popping the cork, he raises it in his hand. "Allright Allright!" He gets everyone's attention. "This is for Wildcat and Mermaid…" He looks around the room. "…raise em up, they're preppin the landing tubes on the other side and we're gonna send them off right." Sloane takes another look around, dragging off of his smoke. "We are going to get shitfaced. This is their party. So here's to keepin the memory goin'." He raises his bottle again in a salute. He lowers his voice. "Wildcat and Mermaid. So say we all." He takes a long pull from the bottle.

"So say we all," Rue echoes loudly, then slurps on her juice box straw. Possibly while she looks forlornly at the wine bottles being chugged.

"So say we all," Micah repeats. Not quite shouting, but it's crisp enough to be easily heard. His bottle's raised, then tipped back for a long swig.

Novella (name included, this time!) lifts the bottle as Sloane begins his toast. As he finishes, she moves her bottle to tap others. "Aye. So say we all." The bottle is lifted to her lips and quickly turned upside down. 1, 2, 3 seconds.. Then she settles it back into her hand. "Godsdamn," she sighs. Her eyes fall back to the bottle before looking to Sloane. "Thanks for getting that frak out of there, Cornbread. What'd you tell that specialist in the hallway?"

PING. Jocasta's eyebrow pitch is almost audible as Sloane reaches out to give her a good-natured jostle. Her whole body goes rigid as if abruptly introduced to an electric current for a second… then two… then three… and then she relaxes, slumping her shoulders forward again and pressing her lips to the mouth of her bottle after murmuring, "So say we all." down its throat.

Bayless raises her bottle and hoists it high. "So say we all," she says before knocking back a healthy swig from her bottle. At the sound of Jo's question, she looks to Sloane, also interested.

Sloane sets his bottle, oblivious to Jocasta's nervousness. The gesture was friendly in nature, and he's not the type to begin to understand what was wrong with it. Dragging off of his cigarette, he moves to sit in one of the chairs so the he can see most of everybody. "Well…I did the gentry thing to get him outside, asking him to come with me. Didn't wanna start a scene." He starts. "When I got him outside I asked him what the frak was wrong with him. I then told him to not go back inside and he'd better get his ass to work writing a formal apology if he doesn't want a whole air wing out to break his ass." Sloane smiles, knowing he's not the toughest guy. "You see I said Air Wing…because, you know, even though I am the one man army around here…"

Micah has gone rather quiet, while Sloane answers Novella's question. Bottle swirled lightly, he takes a toke of his cigarette with the same hand and watches Jocasta some more. "'scuse me," is muttered eventually to those at the table. He pushes to his feet and prowls on over to the woman, plunking himself down beside her on the bunk.

"We're a family," Rue interjects, juice box lowered to the table. "And I'm glad you set that specialist straight, because my first reaction was to unscrew his head and shit down his neck… I don't like losing people. I hate it. I hate it. And for someone to disrespect our people like that… I just." She breaths out a sigh and says, "Thank you, Corny."

Cav nods a few times to Sloane. "Thanks. I don't think it would have ended well if he had been in there a moment longer. Kinda doubt Wildcat or Mermaid wanted their memorial service underscored by a bunch of officers beating the shit out of a Specialist.. though Wildcat might have enjoyed the idea." She smirks to the man's memory, taking another long swig of the bottle. Its then placed on the table before she looks to Rue to set a sympathetic hand on her shoulder. "We should all bear the burden, Rue. Let us carry some, too."

Bayless lifts her bottle in Sloane's direction. "Class act, 'Bread. Definitely have my appreciation." Another swig's taken before she yields that area of the room to Micah.

Again, Jocasta is consigned to wordless expression of complex emotion when Micah makes his way over and says 'hello' by making her bunk mattress sigh by taking an uninvited seat. Instead of immediately greeting him with a fist to the face or by abusing perfectly good alcohol and cracking her bottle over his brain, Jocasta just inches closer and leans her cheek onto his shoulder. Aw. And then she takes a drink.

Nothing to see here. Nothing to see. Kalypso comes shuffling into the Ares Berthings. Her dress uniform is just a little rumpled, her neat and tidy hair-style of earlier is slightly askew, it's obvious she's been crying by the puffy look to her eyes, and there are a few speckles of blood on the collar of her shirt. Ahem. With a nod of her head to those gathered, Kalypso silently moves to her locker to grab her things, and then she's heading into the head to take a shower.

"You know, really?" Cornbread starts. "I got the impression that the guy was just a dumbass. I don't think he did it to disrespect on purpose." He looks to those that have thanked him. "You're welcome guys." He says, looking upwards in a salute with his bottle to Wildcat and Mermaid. He then drinks a little more. Setting the bottle down, he finishes his cigarette. "S'what Wingmen are for aye?" He adds he then nudges Bayless and then nods in the direction of the head. Kaly is one of Bayless' flock.

Micah ..wasn't expecting that. He already had his hackles up, eyes shied away like he was anticipating some kind of shove or bottle to the head from the ECO. When she leans her cheek against his shoulder, though, he simply.. sighs. It's a weary sigh. One arm's slung around the woman, and a little tug given to pull her closer, smile inching across his lips as he listens to the banter nearby. Yeah. He just sits with her quietly.

The shower can be heard moments after Kalypso disappears in there. She's not in long before she comes back out, carrying her uniform and dressed in shorts and a tank. The uniform is stuffed in her locker. She'll deal with it in the morning. And then the woman is climbing up into her bunk with a, "I don't want to talk about it," for anyone that asks. The curtains pulled shut behind her. Not that she's likely to get much sleep in here tonight.

"Might be… course, I don't abide fools, Corn. Especially when they wear a uniform that's supposed to mean something. That I /know/ means something." Rue eyes Sloane as she speaks, then rolls her shoulders and shoves the juice box straw back into her mouth to mumble a response to Novella.

Rue whispers to Novella.

Bayless glances to Kalypso's less-than-cheerful entrance and exit, then looks to Sloane. "Best to let her be… I'll talk to her in the morning." To Rue, she nods in agreement. "Damn right, boss. Most of the deckgang's good people, and… I dunno, maybe that guy was too… but Gods almighty…" She just shakes her head in disbelief.

"Yeah, well. You walk into a room full of officers who are wearing their dress greys, you don't loudly announce a hello to everyone. Especially when you see people looking rather dour." Cav bristles at it and shakes her head. "Stupid frak." She sighs and lifts the bottle again. With Rue's words, she nods in understanding. "Nobody fights alone." A small smile for her and then she nods to Bayless. "My crew chief is good people. She's a godsdamn hero with my bird. dunno much about the rest of the knuckledraggers."

Truth be told, Jocasta seems to be pretty content doing nothing more than occupying Micah's shoulder and side and silently drinking her booze. These are the little moments in life that might mean something later — maybe make a cameo in that flashback sequence you're supposedly owed just before you die.

Cornbread takes another long pull from his bottle and then nods to Bayless. "Her and I had a talk earlier, saw her in the hallway." He adds in, might tie up a previous question that Bayless had for him. It's already hitting his eyes a little bit. For being cheap, it's sure doing its job tonight. "Yeah I'm with ya, Wrongway. I mean I can do some pretty frakkin' foolish shit but I do it for laughs, but that guy?" He shakes his head. He taps his bottle a few times on the table. "End of life on that conversation…Hey you guys remember that time Mermaid and I got on that two-day spree of hip checking eachother into equipment in the gym?" He asks, starting the stories. "She got me into the pool…damn that was funny."

Micah's doing more smoking than drinking, truth be told. He's a multitasker, though, and he's got both bottle and cigarette in his left hand— while his right's migrated to the top of Jo's head to brush fingertips through the dark hair. He still doesn't attempt to speak further to her. Maybe they've sat like this a time or two back in the old days, before Genesis, before the colonies went up in smoke.

"Or the way she always talked about boats and sailing… She was from Aquaria," Rue chimes in, wearing a slight grin at the memory. "She told me once that she took the Academy entrance exam on a lark. That if she hadn't, she'd still be sailing with her family."

Novella calms a touch as the alcohol settles through her liver. But Cornbread's demand settles it. The topic is over and done. She smiles at the memory he brings up. "Yeah, when I was doing recovery from Leonis, Zaharis had me doing physical therapy in the pool. Mermaid came in once and started giving me shit about how its really done in the ocean. Got me riled and I started flailing water at her. She just grinned like an asshole." Novella chuckles lifting the bottle once more.

Bayless grins and joins in with the stories. "She used to tell me all these stories about her and her friends taking the boat out to go trolling for guys before she signed up. Invited me one time."

Jocasta takes another long and solemn pull from her bottle and then suddenly announces to the berths: "I frakked both of them. They didn't call him Wildcat for nothin'…" A beat. A drink. "…okay, so maybe not."

Sloane nods to Rue. "Yeah I'm from Aquaria too. We missed eachother in school and everything there. Didn't know here but I guess there were a few places she'd been prepped there that I'd been, flight school-wise." Sloane adds. "Big irony is that I went into the navy to get into physics and I qual'd for fighter as well. We got a big kick out of that." Sloane smiles, looking to Novella. He takes another long drink, pointing at her, remembering that. He grins and leans back a little, looking to Bayless. "Oh man…I'm gonna have to carry that torch and show you how that's done then, Scorch. I'm not lying, that was the thing to do back home. No folks, open water, boats. Hook the boats up together? Instant latch-key lack of supervision fest. Everyone does it…" He blinks, looking to Jocasta. He looks back to his bottle and chews the side of his lip for a moment before taking a drink.

Orion slips inside like an alleycat who's been kicked around a few times. Truth be told, the man looks weary, a little dazed… he's probably been 'flying solo', but has apparently learned his lesson from last time: He's in sweats and it's not, like, condition two. Also his face looks bruised in places. His nose, while he's cleaned it up, looks particularly bad. Like he's been punched in the face, "This where everyone's run off to. Gold almost felt bearable. Knew it was too good to be true."

Micah seems roughly half here and now, and half in his bottle of cheap booze. When Jo mentions twofer'ing the ex-pilots though, he's forced to choke back up a little of that brew. "Frakkin' liar," he mutters once he's wiped his mouth, jostling her with his shoulder.

Bayless shakes her head, smiling a bit at Jocasta's comment. "Can't say I never thought of…" And then Orion walks in. "Flask? The frak happened…?!"

"I—" Rue blinks over towards Jocasta, before the joke catches up with her brain and she smirks. "Always knew you were a minx." She settles her chair back down on all four legs, then pushes to her feet. "I should go find out what's holdin' up Fender." She half-turns to go and spots Orion, cocking her head to the side as she examines him from foot to head. "Boy, I better not hear 'bout whatever caused -that- tomorrow mornin'."

Novella snortslaughs at Jocasta and shoots her a grin and a lifted bottle. Amen, Jammer. There's another long swig before looking at Orion. "Lords Boondocks. What kinda frakkin' truck did you get hit by?!" She blinks a few times and looks to Sloane. "That actually sounds like a damned good time. Too bad we can't do that with the Genie and a few other ships. Make like we were 18 again and be retarted."

Jocasta's smirk is ever-so-subtly smug and she chokes on a little chuckle before going back to nursing her booze and falling under a contemplative quiet. She wordlessly releases Micah from his solemn duty as chinrest but remains under the yoke of his arm around her shoulders without objection.

Sloane looks back to Jocasta and merely smirks coyly. "Ya never know, Cav…ya never know." Sloane replies. "Oh that reminds me. Fire Eater and I were talkin about tryin to get a group of us to hit the Carina at the same time and load up the sports bar with cash for booze, throw a bit of a party on leave and out of uniform. Relax it out a bit." Sloane asks, sipping from his bottle again.

Orion blinks, actually a little surprised at the reaction he's getting. Bruises take a little time to show up, something the poor guy didn't consider when checking himself over. "Oh, uh… naw. It's fine. I…" Think fast! "….tripped over a pair of boots." He casts Micah a quick glance, as if to say something, though he doesn't actually say anything at all, "It's all good… sir." And the last part is directed to Rue. He rubs his temples.

Rue stares Orion hard in the eyes, then looks down the way into the shower area. "Right. You should be careful about those boots, son." Looking back at the man, she slips her juice box straw back into her mouth, slurps, sidesteps him and exits out into the hallway. "I'll be back!"

Micah rather belatedly spots Orion, aka what the cat dragged in. A brow arches slowly as he looks the pilot up and down, shifting to hook a booted foot on the edge of Jo's bunk. "Already been done. You know the rules, pick a different excuse." He swigs from his bottle, drags off the cigarette and exhales smoke through his nose. "Or, jus' tell us what the frak happened."

Bayless sighs and sets her bottle down before going for her locker and grabbing a towel. "Think I need me a shower, folks. 'Scuse me a bit." And off she goes to the head.

Novella watches Orion dubiously. She takes another long swig from the bottle and glances to Micah. Meh, if he wants to know, she'll hear the excuses. But there's a look to Sloane. "Huh? Roz wants us to spend cubits to buy the alcohol off the Carina? Did I hear you right?" Confused.

"No no no…" Sloane says, waving his hand in a circle in her direction as he leans forward on his knees with the bottle in one hand. It's the international 'let me break it down for ya' pose. "We were talking about getting a few of us that can to hit some leave over on the Carina to do some hangin' out and drinkin at the sports bar…" Sloane says as he fades into the background of the scene.

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