PHD #422: A Shit Reporter
A Shit Reporter
Summary: Sawyer gets a post-Gemenon debriefing
Date: 24 Apr 2042 AE
Related Logs: Gemenon Foo.
Constin Sawyer 
Main Brig - Deck 6
Tiny and cramped, the Main Brig seems designed to be claustrophobic. The steel bars lining the three cells have been set into the steel bulkheads on each side. Inside each cell is a stainless steel toilet and a bunk that might be too short for some of the taller crewmembers. The dreary conditions don't seem to be helped by the presence of a Marine guard who is there twenty-four hours a day, as long as a prisoner is in custody. The whole room is under surveillance via camera system in the Security Hub and every visitor must sign-in and abide by the rules.
Post-Holocaust Day: #422

The cruel irony of Brig time is that those inside the cells have nothing to do, while those outside the cells are typically overwhelmed with other things to do. Thus, it has been a few days since the Cerberus' favorite civilian reporter returned, before Constin finds himself signing in with the MP on duty, for an interview with the prisoner.

It's the ceiling that occupies Sawyer's attention today, laid out on her cot in her fleet issued sweats as she is. Her socked toes curl and uncurl as if listening to music that only she can hear in her head. And this is the way she wiles away her time now that she's gotten out of her restless pacing phase.

"Miss Averies," Constin's all-too-familiar voice greets evenly, as the Master-at-Arms pauses his steps facing the bars. "Would like a few words with you, if'n you're disposed to talk?" Boots coming to rest at shoulder width, arms crossing loosely over his chest.

Sawyer swings her legs around, fluidly coming to a seated position. A hand makes a swipe at her hair that's getting annoyingly long again, but it's not as if she's had a chance to tend to such a thing in the last three weeks of her roller-coaster life. Blonde curtains back down to her chin because of its refusal to stay pinned behind her ear. "Gunnery Sergeant Constin. I'd be happy to oblige." She even gives him a slight smile for his trouble.

Constin affects a small near-grin of his own as Sawyer sits up and answers as she does. "We really gotta quit meeting like this, ma'am," he notes, deadpan, before getting into the real business: "Prior to your departure from the Cerberus on Fifteen April, were you aware of any plans or intentions of yourself or any other Cerberus personnel to depart this vessel?"

"At least you're on that side of the bars this time." Sawyer says wryly before leaning over her knees, propping her elbows on her thigh and keeping her hands clasped between them. "Should you mean departure from the hangar bay? Yes. The McQueen-Two, who we did not know was a Two at the time, convinced us that the payload the Raptor was carrying would detonate or something to that effect. And instead we could use it against the Areion. You'll have to forgive me here, there was a lot of techno-babble thrown over my head. If you mean departure from the immediate airspace following? No. He said he would jump us to safety, I assume that meant to the first set of coordinates all the ships have, should an emergency jump need to be initiated."

Constin nods to the answer. "And prior to arrival at that Hangar bay, you were aware of no intention to depart the Cerberus?" he states, to clarify for the record. A slowly drawn breath, before he voices further. "Please describe your recollections of arrival at Gemenon."

Sawyer shakes her head to the question that came first. "The Areion sympathetic usurpers had cut the wireless in the corridor we were in. As they came from the Deck, evident by the pilot…" The reporter swallows thickly, having to get around the memory of that particular man. "The assumption was, that the wireless handsets on the deck in that area might have also been tampered with. I guess we fled to the Raptor because that's one comm system they wouldn't have been able to so easily tamper with. Of course, in hindsight, our destination of the Raptor seems as if it could have been contrived. After I pressed the FTL jump, we blinked into re-existence in Gemenon airspace. He revealed he was a Cylon Humanoid Model. And I swear, I almost shot the bastard there, had I not been concerned with the fact that neither Tyr nor I knew how to fly a Raptor. That's when we were hailed by what I assume was an Eleven model. They were expecting us. Or rather, expecting the McQueen-Two and whomever he was able to bring with him," She transitions right into the narrative he asked. "They seemed worried, however, and it's as if he was late in coming."

"I am asking, for the record, whether you were aware of any intention of Cerberus personnel to depart this ship prior to Fifteen April. It's a clear statement I need, Sawyer," he clarifies at the repeated question. Then it's on to Gemenon. "Did you express any desire to return to the Cerberus, either immediately, or during the course of your stay on the planet, or did Specialist Bannik do so, to your knowledge?"

"I thought you just wanted to talk, Gunny. If it's a formal statement you're requesting, I am using my right to invoke counsel." Before Constin can really work up a good steam, Sawyer's lifting a hand. "Kidding, Gunny. Only kidding. I was not aware of any intention of any Cerberus personnel to depart the ship. As to returning, we were at their mercy in regards to that, because as much as I'd love to claim I know everything? Flying isn't one of them. And do you really think, me being me, I'd pass up on an opportunity to be in a place like a cohabitated Gemenon? Really? I'd have begged to stay longer, had I not needed to come home and tell you all what I learned."

Constin's expression twists into a frown as she invokes council, sucking in a breath through flared nostrils, before snorting it back out and cracking a grudging grin. "Arright, that was a bit funny," he concedes with a grunt. "And no, I did not expect you would, but I had hoped to hear that Bannik did. What with being a serviceman aboard a battlestar that was undergoing a mutiny when he abandoned ship, and all." A fresh breath drawn in. "What did they feed you, on the world?"

"Aha! You're going to like me when this is all over, aren't you?" Sawyer gives the man an impish grin. To the rest she just gives a little shrug. "I can't say if he did or if he didn't ask with any certainty. Only that I didn't until we all sort of just agreed it was time to go home. You have to realize, Gunny, that I was not with Tyr twenty four seven. We were allowed to come and go as we pleased from the township to the temple, gathering as much intel as we were able before they were ready to take us back to the ship. From a service standpoint, I would be proud of what Tyr Bannik did for the post in the fleet. Not looking for some way to hang him. Please tell me that's not what this is about, Gunny? You should be picking me apart about the Cylons, not busy trying to figure out if I can give you dirt on Tyr."

"It ain't about dirt," Constin states simply. "And you can rest assured some folk think real high of what he did. Just so happens my job is to be one of the people who pays attention to things like the fact that he abandoned his post during battlestations. Ain't about hanging or dirt. It's basic investigation to seek corroborating or conflicting accounts of the action." A freshly drawn breath. "And we'll get to the cylons, don't you dread none. What did they feed you?" he repeats at the end.

That all seems to pain Averies, and so she hangs her head to look at her toes in their greying socks. "Things like fish from the river, even fresh apples from a nearby orchard. There were even goods they scavenged from when they find the other human survivors. The ground there is still fertile, as it was one of the places that seemed untouched by radiation. Unleavened bread, things like that."

"Were you told or shown anything in regard to supply to indicate that the settlement on Gemenon were capable of supporting a larger population, or give any word about how long this little… rad free pocket would hold up?" Constin wonders next. His good humor fades as Sawyer's mood dims, and the big marine relaxes back into the comfort of stern neutrality as his questions proceed.

"They seem to indicate that they could and would continue to keep rounding up pockets of survivors and house them as best they were able, but made it clear that this wasn't a long term solution. I'm not sure if that was from a security or provisional stand point." Sawyer lifts her gaze back up, having no problems answering any of her questions. It may be easily read on her features that for once in her life, she's more than happy to be forthcoming.

Constin, having no prior experience with such a look on Sawyer's face, does not seem to recognize it. "Did any of the individuals with whom you interacted express any idea of a longer-term solution? If so, how many, and were the solutions any different?"

"The consensus seemed clear: that whatever was sealed off in the Temple was the answer. A path that would lead us to new worlds outside of our known realm. Some place that we could eventually call home." And what's that other unrecognizable expression on Sawyer's face? Hope.

"What nature of 'seals' were you led to believe were in place?" Elf wonders next, naturally narrow blue eyes ticking a touch moreso. "Also, did the Humanoid cylons give any explanation for the fact that the more aggressive cylons had not killed these humans under their protection?"

"You can view the footage from the transmissions we were able to decrypt. It's the same as we saw in person. It, for all intents and purposes, appears to be a lock of some sort that requires a key. Now whether that's physical or someone standing in front of it who can mutter the magic words, I don't know. I used to think myself apt at figuring out puzzles, and that is one I wasn't able." Disappointed? Maybe he knows that look on the Reporter's mug. "As far as the protection, they would lead us to believe that each model doesn't meddle in the other's business. Honor amongst thieves if you will. Which is why the project on Leonis seemed to be largely attributable to the Fives. The mess with the swarms seemed to be linked to the Threes and so on."

"Yet on Leonis, the Elevens were observed to order a shutdown in the joint operation of the Fives and Twelves," Constin observes. "Did you see or hear anything to indicate that a similar consensus might be reached against this project? Long shot, I know.. but I'm banking on a measure of that civilian suspicion you're so proud of," he needles with a tight grin. It doesn't linger long.

"There were holes, Elf. A lot of holes." Sawyer uses the nickname he supplied her. "Sometimes it was like…they didn't even know /how/ to answer the question, like their brains just couldn't form the words. They had Centurians with them, that they referred to as 'free'. And when asked what that meant, the best they could give me was that they had returned to their own true god. Do you remember when we had the Eleven in custody? That she couldn't directly betray certain truths about their kind? Like it were physically impossible? That's the same impression that I got."

"Huh," Constin grunts evenly at the account. "So, can't or won't answer. What sorts of questions got that kinda response?" the big marine wonders, letting his head tilt to a slight angle as he regards the civilian through the bars. "Corollary: was there anything they wouldn't show you?"

Sawyer chews on the inner pad of her cheek while she thinks, but she just shakes her head. "No place was forbidden to us, we were allowed to come and go around the complex and down into the temple as we pleased, as I've said. There weren't any guarded doors or anything in that regard. Obviously they suggested for us not to run off into the wild, but that was more for our own protection than anything else. But had we really wanted to, they would have let us go. As to the things they weren't exactly forthcoming with, the one example that springs to mind is that they seemed to know of Rejn-One's acts on the Cerberus, or at least that he had resurrected. But they wouldn't tell me /how/ they knew."

Constin grunts wordlessly to the statement regarding Rejn. "Huh. No surprise, really. Clear that have either an agent, or means of contact aboard this ship. Considering you all knew where to find us again," Constin states pointedly. "Was any further questions asked regarding this 'key'? Don't imagine you all let them be evasive and mysterious for the sake of it, yeah?"

"Well. I'm not certain about that. I mean, it's certainly a possibility, don't get me wrong. But it's clear not all of the Elevens and Twos are down on Gemenon, so they could have been communicating with others of their model that were still with the enemy fleet? As to how we got back, I'm not certain, but aren't there a preset number of jump coordinates that each Raptor and other ship of the fleet have just in case they get separated from the rest? It stands to reason, we just found you on one of the presets." There's a little shrug of the reporter, as that's obviously the impression she was under. Were it contrary, the blonde doesn't seem to know. "As to what the key is? They seem to have as much of a clue as we do. I think they feel as if we need to fill in each other's blanks, which is why they want the sit down with us."

"You ain't military, so to you that might make sense. But Raptors which jump away from the Fleet can only retrace their steps. There should have been no way for you all to find us again." the latter half of Sawyer's answer provokes another frown. "Hell, they could have been forthcoming with information in that case. Did they give any indication as to why this had to happen face to face? Pure exchange of information would not only seem not to require direct meeting, but would seem to be made more dangerous by our physical presence."

Sawyer can only give a little shrug to her misconception. Because that only leaves something nobody is comfortable with: another spy. "I imagine they want to give us the opportunity to come see the Temple ourselves without feeling as if they are putting themselves and those they rescued in danger, which is why they wanted to send the messengers back first. Kepner would have just had us blanket bomb everything, I'm sure."

"You imagine," Constin echoes evenly. "Did you inquire as to why they insisted on a face to face meeting, or simply infer from their behaviors? It would seem more reasonable that if they were concerned about Kepner or people like him, that avoiding a face to face encounter would be preferable."

Sawyer leans forward towards the bars again, catching her gaze on Constin's own. "They think this is the only way to save humanity, and that the Cerberus and our meager fleet are the only humans left. They need the face to face, they want to convince us that they are serious about wishing to reach an agreement between us and them. You don't negotiate sensitive business over the wireless, you do it when you can /show/ the other partner why they should invest. Part of that lies in the temple, which should be viewed in person. Going back to the wireless metaphor…you also don't know who'll be listening in."

Constin frowns. It's his default expression when considering unknown quantities. "And you believe them in this regard?" he wonders out loud, before muttering a short curse. "This kinda information is precisely the kinda shit that I hate. Too many variables, too many unknown quantities, too much that we gotta take on trust. Everything about this presents a threat to the security of this ship and crew. I can't rely on hunches or gambles."

The reporter has the audacity to smirk, "You and I, Gunny, have more in common than you think. I operate on facts that I check and double check, and when I'm through with that, I like to see what I can poke holes in. And as I said before, there are a lot of holes. But one thing that's happened to me since the Holocaust, is I have to take some stuff on faith. And that's all I can really give you."

Constin shakes his head at that smirk and the words that follow. "Ain't that a frakking kick in the teeth? Faith ain't something I can factor in, Averies. There's too many lives riding on this hand for me to lean on faith in anything what can't be proven." A short sniff. "I'd make a shit reporter, no doubt." As she has said 'that's all I can give you', Elf looks to the marine on duty, nods once, and exhales. "This ain't an order. But I would strongly recommend that you not spread word of this Gemenon business all over the fleet for a little while. It compromises too much."

Sawyer leans back, her smirk only growing. "You would be a shit reporter. Mainly because you'd have to have some believable people skills. And that ugly mug of yours…" She clucks her tongue in a tsking manner. Not long ago, that would be an insult. Now, she phrases it as good natured ribbing. "Don't worry about me, Gunny. I'm being careful. I don't have the protection of the uniform that Tyr has. Little would stop anyone from shoving my ass in the airlock while no one was looking. I know what they're saying about me. I'm not so sure that some of it isn't true, so." The blonde takes a deep exhale and releases it in a sigh. "What are you going to do, right?"

Constin snorts at the ribbing. "Everything's always about you, ain't it?" Elf needles back as she mentions 'being careful'. Belatedly though, a very faint curl to his lip answers his lack of people skills. "What I'm gonna do? Is keep trying to hold together what other folk are dead set on tearing apart. It must be a Friday," he adds dryly. "Luck, Sawyer," he notes as he draws a breath and takes a step back from the bars.

"Of course it's always about me." Sawyer floats over to the departing Constin, her voice now projected at the ceiling as she tilts her head back up to resume her count of the rivets in the bulkhead. "Because anything else is just too frightening." There's a pause, "You too, Gunny." And that's probably the most civil parting they've ever had.

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