PHD #189: Bob's World
Bob's World
Summary: Marko and Leyla take a trip with the Virtual Raider.
Date: 3 Sep 2041 AE
Related Logs: The Sims and Flybys and...Flies.
Devlin Leyla Marko Psyche 
Flight Simulation
A training room specifically dedicated to honing aerial skills, this area is equipped with several flight simulator pods that allow the pilots to practice maneuvers and tactics without being in a real live plane. The Viper-pods are installed on one side of the room with a little space between them, an attempt to provide a realistic feel for close-range wing training, while a smaller number of Raptor sim-pods are installed on the opposite side of the room from the Vipers. A central computer terminal and overhead display screen sits at the head of the room, where one can input exercises and data to be run in the sims, scroll through score records, and control the training modules.
Post-Holocaust Day: #189

"I don't think I could be more," Devlin replies, smiling crookedly. He's speaking too quietly to be easily heard from the doorway as more than a murmur of voices, and the top of his head barely shows above the seat-backs in the rows that face the simulators and the big overhead display above the console. There's gun camera footage paused on that screen, which presumably the nugget was watching before he ended up where he is now, which is slouched way down in his chair with Psyche on his lap, speaking in whispers. Clearly not expecting visitors.

"So how'd the flight with Boots go, Sweet Pea?" Marko asks, turning the dogging wheel and hauling open the hatch into the sim spaces. The discovery of Psyche and Nugget in mid confab catches him somewhat off guard.

Well, thankfully, the pilot that's making her way into the sims doesn't seem at all interested in whomever else might be in the room and what they might be doing. She's dressed up in her full kit, the helmet masking the sound of any voices, at least to where she doesn't pay them any mind, as she heads to the control panel, or was about to, when Marko pulls up short, and her attention shifts over towards the viper sims. But her attention doesn't linger as she looks back towards the raptors, "I think he's gotten used to being able to push his 'shock value'." Clearly, the woman was less than impressed. A shrug, as she tips her head in the direction of the sims, "Found what might be some salvageable machines, or at least metal, maybe some fuel down at the quarry."

Psyche gives Devlin a melting smile — apparently, whatever he couldn't be more of? It makes her pretty happy. Her lashes lower and she leans in… then blinks and looks up at the sound of the hatch and voices, her smile turning into an abashed grin. "Heya, Marko!" she calls, waving cheerfully. "Leyla." She slides down a little, making herself less obtrusive — though it doesn't appear she has any immediate plans to leave the nugget's lap.

Marko regains his composure readily enough. After all, with him about to get married, he's hardly got any right to judge anyone else for hooking up, especially under these circumstances. A small, private little smile quirks the young man's lips at the thought of his intended. "Heh, don't mind us." he says to the duo. "Just snagging a little sim time." he explains, heading for the control board. "Heh, Bootstrap seems dreadful, doesn't he?" he asks Leyla. "But trust me, once you get to know him…he's much worse." he chuckles. "Damn fine ECO, though. Damn fine." he nods, booting up the main computer. "Fuel and salvage? Sounds like a pretty successful hunt." he adds. "Okay, Sweet Pea, get ready to meet my greatest accomplishment in this incarnation." he grins proudly. "The Virtual Raider."

Devlin looks up with a sheepish sort of expression as well, lifting a hand to greet them, "Marko, Leyla, evening." He gives Psyche a nudge and teases, "Hey, ragging on Trask, that's right up your alley. Do you want to watch, or should we get out of their hair?" He looks up and adds, "You guys mind an audience? Or we might split, no hard feelings either way but seems polite to check. That Raider's pretty cool."

"No, I don't think so. He gets worse if you let him get to you. That's how he gets his rocks off. How offensive can I be, how crude can I be, how uncomfortable can I make other people?" Leyla looks back over, lifting a hand, "Hey, Psyche. No point in bending down. We can still see the top of your head." But then, back to Marko. "He doesn't seem dreadful at all. He seems…sad. No different than any of the trashing-talkers I grew up with." And that's perhaps what makes Leyla mostly immune to the abrasive SL. They're both from the same place. She already knows his kind. "At the mention of the Raider, well, "You do realize I fly raptors, right?" And back over towards the overstuffed sim chair. "I don't mind if you stay. More than enough room for everyone in here. Nice to see you."

"Trask is a troglodyte," Psyche offers, stifling a yawn. "I'm not sure I have the energy to bash him with my normal enthusiasm, tonight. But I'm perfectly content to soak in the hate of others. It's validating." She rests her head on Devlin's shoulder. "We can totally stay if you want, babe. I might fall asleep, though." In the sims? "I can sleep through anything. I have the power nap down to an art form."

"Thanks, Dev." Marko replies, giving a little bow. "No worries, Leyla. The flyable Raider was built as a step off into creating a sim opponent that flies like the real thing, give or take." he explains, powering up the Raptor sim pod. "Don't have enough computing power on this system to do it perfectly, sadly." he sighs, shaking his head a little as he surveys the gear. "But it's close enough to make a good training aid. So, what are you in the mood for?" he asks. "Yeah, stick around if you like." he adds, nodding to the other two. "Not like we're doing anything hush-hush."

"Thanks, guys," Devlin replies to the raptor pair, before glancing down at Psyche. He snorts softly and shakes his head, "Nah, if you fall asleep you'll put my legs to sleep," he says, "We should just go, and I'll meet up with you guys," he raises his voice, "To mess around in here like we talked about another day? Also I'm supposed to talk to you about your bachelor party, Marko. I didn't know you were back up, but we should chat or whatever when you get a free minute, yeah?" He's hauling himself upright and disentangling so they can climb out and take their leave adding, "Nice to see you two. Good luck with the Raider!"

"I don't hate him. I guess I more don't see the point, exactly." And no, from her tone, she's not just saying that because he's her SL. "Anytime I'm on the ship, and free, grab me, and I'll get into the sims with you. I think I found the right program for the training we were talking about, Devlin." And with the pair seeming to be getting ready, at least one half, she nods, "Let's run through the simulation and you can walk me through how you worked out the programming."

Psyche stretches once she's back on her feet, squinching her eyes shut and grimacing as she does. Looks like it's a good stretch. She lets her arms flops back to her sides, then blinks and points at Marko, Devlin's comment about the bachelor party apparently reminding her. "You and Lunie totally need to get your comely little heads together and set a date, dude. I have a dress to make for your intended." She waves good night. "Have fun, you two!"

"Heh, we're trying, Psyche, we're trying!" Marko chuckles in mock protest. "Every time we think we've got time to really _talk_ about it, the brass comes up with something else that has to be done _RFN_." he says, rolling his eyes a little. "Heh, bachelor party? Why does that suddenly make me very afraid?" he asks rhetorically. "You guys let me know when you think you'll have a little down time and we'll hash something out for the sims." he says for both Psyche and Devlin's sake. "I've got one setting on this thing I'm _dying_ to try." he grins, a hint of gleeful malevolence in his eyes. For Leyla, Marko bobs his head a little and starts tapping commands into the sim. "Okay, let's play a little hide and seek." he says. "Pod's coming hot."

"Sounds good, I'll look forward to it," Devlin replies to Marko and Leyla both about the sim time before adding a chuckle to the former and a shake of his head, "I haven't got any big evil plans, don't worry. We can talk. See you both later." He lifts a hand in wave, and then heads out, holding the door for the blonde pilot as they leave.

"Isn't the chaplain on duty all of the time? They do have an office, right?" Clearly, the whole idea of weddings and floof and pomp is lost on Leyla. "Just walk down there and it'll be over in ten minutes. Maybe five, I dunno. I've never had to do it before. But it can't be that hard a process." Clearly, there is a gene missing in Leyla's makeup. "Alright, I'm heading in." And with that, Leyla does as she says, climbing into the sim and getting herself strapped in.

"Huh…don't get me started." Marko replies with a slight edge on his tone as he keys up the simulator and makes tracks for the pod. "Okay, the basic set up here is that we're on a survey mission." he explains as he straps himself into his seat and starts firing up the ECO's 'office'. "A raider's going to show up, but we're not allowed to jump back to the Cerberus until we've completed our scans." he adds. "Which means, we're going to have to try and outwit the little bastard." he grins.

If there was another comment Leyla might make, she seems to think better of it, and drops it when Marko seems less than thrilled with the turn in the conversation. There are just some things she was not meant to know. Clearly the whole 'point' of romance and intimate involvement is one of them. "Alright, I assume it's going to be trying to hit us. Let's see what sort of terrain we're working with. Give me any anergy readings coming from the planet, any interference we can mask ourselves in." Right…on to business.

"Well, we're scanning for…unobtanium." Marko replies, chuckling a little. "I know, I know, retarded, but that's one of the default settings on the ECO suite and who wants to reinvent the wheel?" he asks. "Planet we're scanning is your basic ball. Rock and noble gasses. No lifeforms down there. Just the potential to harvest a lot of shiny stuff." he adds. "Coded this to be as close to the real thing as we can get in the sims." he explains. "This one's going to test your ability to fly, and my ability to baffle."

"Where have I heard that one before?" Comes the comment from the front seat. "Any sort of ground cover we can get lost in?" They're still trying to figure out how well Raiders can 'see' after all. And scanning can often get confused by flying low, tricking the enemy into thinking you're part of the ground cover. Still, Leyla takes the ship in, fuel sipping as she descends into the turbulence of the planet's atmosphere.

"Check your terrain following gear." Marko advises. "Okay…three…two…one…." he counts off as Leyla's piloting is recognized by the computer and the ship starts to buffet in the roiling air as the Raptor goes atmospheric. "Simulation start…." he calls. "Commencing sweep one." he adds, touching the appropriate keys to toggle the Raptor's sensor suite to look for the rare mineral. "DRADIS is clear…." he says, tightening his straps as the buffet increases. "Careful, Sweet Pea, got some very rough air ahead."

"There's rough air back here, Flasher." But it's only going to get worse, as the course they've plotted it taking them into the worst of what looks like a storm of some kind, geothermal, perhaps. There sure as heck isn't any water on this rock. "If this melts the paint off of my ship, I'm going to be very upset." It's hard, slow going, working her way through the storm, but she seems to be managing alright, all things considered. At least she's not fighting the urge to yack all over her helmet.

"I'm not the one decided to run this survey on the ground. Sweet Pea." Marko comments acidly, clearing his throat as the buffeting makes his horrid supper do the Colonial equivalent of the Charleston in his guts. "Nothing on the scanners so far." he adds. "Recommend you vector to one four three and put on about a thousand meters of altitude." he calls, checking his gear. "I really don't wanna get rolled tonight."

"He's a rabbit, we're a tortoise. And we've got no air support. Why play in his sandbox? We'd be better of playing in ours." But that's the only argument Marko will get, as Leyla adjusts course to her ECO's new heading, the raptor rising up to the desired altitude. Mars and Venus are most definitely not seeing eye to eye at the moment.

"There…" Marko calls, giving a sigh of relief as the Raptor steadies a little. "Gods, this is like Bob's World or something." he comments, training his scanners to and fro. He can't argue with her logic, so he doesn't bother trying. Still, it makes for a tough way to earn a crust. "Still nothing on the scanners……" he calls.

And that's when all hell breaks loose. "DRADIS contact! Cylon raider coming in hot at two six fiver mark zero eight niner." the ECO shouts as a stream of tracers lances through the air a meter away from the Raptor's nose.

"Bob's world had funnel cake." Leyla is just leveling off, when the call comes and the raider makes his presence known. A warning shot across her bow. Delightful. "I see him." And with that, Leyla jumps away. Not literally, of course, but she's no longer riding slow and smooth. She's quick, darting as she maneuvers the ship as much with the currents of atmosphere as she can. It's instinctive, a space pilot's technique, using natural forces to bolster your piloting.

"Hey!" Marko calls, finding himself having to grab the edge of the ECO's desk to keep from getting tossed around like a gym sock in a dryer. "Okay…okay…" he adds, regaining his composure as he peers at the DRADIS console. "Raider's aborting his gun run, coming now to..frak…wait one." the young ECO calls as Leyla's maneuvering makes it hard to make out the patterns on his screen. "He's going high, same bearing, now carom zero sixer, sixer, four. The bastard's climbing….." he adds. "Now at level two one zero three, now coming to two two one sixer." he advises. "He's gonna play this from above."

This is not making her happy. Not happy at all. Her best bet, it seems, is to try to get as close to that storm as she can. Without getting lost in it, "Going to see if I can slide her in around the edge of that storm." Leyla takes the ship in, the amount of turbulence inside the ship easing as she gets a better feel for the atmosphere she's flying in. "How long would it take for you to reconfig the swallows to mimic our signature?"

"Already on it!" Marko calls, frantically starting to retask the swallows to try and spoof the Raider. Which is, by the by, according to both his and Leyla's DRADIS readouts, starting to tip over to stab at them again with its guns. "Frak! Incoming!" he hollers.

"I'm on it!" Leyla can see the raider, despite the interference on her display, and she drags back on the stick, braking, as much as a raptor can break, dipping down, searching for the underside of the storm. (think Eye of Jupiter), as if to use it as a shield, and umbrella to protect her from the incoming fire. Whether it helps or not, well. All she can hope, is if she has trouble flying, so will he.

Give the Raider it's due, it's right on their ass when Leyla pulls her stunt, throwing the Raptor into the very eye of the storm. But it's nowhere near stupid enough to follow them down into it . So, instead, it breaks high, climbing for altitude while waiting for the Raptor crew to lose their nerve and fly into clearer air where it can strike at them.

Marko doesn't even have to to curse as he feels the g's come on as Leyla dives for the deck beneath the storm. "Raider's going high again." he calls out. "Currently at bearing two two fiver…." he pauses to brace himself for a particularly harsh shimmy. "Carom one one two." he announces. "Altitude is increasing. He's not following us in." he says, blowing a sigh of relief.

"Then while he's playing chicken with us out there, find us a deposit of unobtanium so we can get the frak out of this place." It's an angel, balanced on the head of a pin, trying to ride the wall of the storm, now down deep in the eye, which, is actually, despite what one might expect, the most peaceful part of a storm. "I'm not going to be able to stay in here for long. I'll have to drop out beneath it."

"Copy that." Marko replies, straightening some as the ride smoothes out a little. "Damn….nothing on the scanners." he grumps, thumping his console impatiently. "Wait one…" he calls…"Swallows are hot." he announces. "Ready to fire on your mark."

"Alright, fire a couple back up and away the way we came, see if he follows, might give us a chance to hop out from under this thing, see if we can put some distance between us and that raider, while I try to find us another bush to hide under." yes, right now the raptor is very much like a rabbit, hiding from a fox.

"You got it." Marko calls, suiting action to words and firing a pair of Swallows 'over the shoulder' of the Raptor, back into the roiled, more jagged air they just flew through. "Wait one…" he calls, peering at his DRADIS scope hard. "He's going for it!" he announces…."Toaster's going for it, he's coming off the perch, you got a move, time to make it!"

While Marko has been doing what it is he does best, that is to say, setting up their decoy, Leyla has been looking for the next best place to use for cover, and she seems to have found it, and she finally lets the raptor drop. Not quite like a rock, but…hold on to your lunches. She's down almost to the ground, the storm now a swirling eye above their heads, as she shoots forward, pushing hard on the engines as she heads towards the next set of 'cloud cover' she can find. Not nearly as roiling as the storm, but full of the eddies and currents of the planet's turbulent atmosphere, "Good work, Flasher. Let me know as soon as you see him again." This close to the ground, with the jagged edges of outcroppings and pseudo-mountains around her, it doesn't pay to spend too much time looking at the DRADIS and not enough time looking out the front window. Especially when you're trying to work as close to top speed as you can, to hasten the search for a usable vein. "Spin up the FTL."

The Raider dives on the pair of swallows, silencing one with a short burst of cannon fire, only to find another still squawking. Fool it once, shame on you, fool it twice, shame on it. Engines screaming against the storm, the Raider returns to its perch to wait.

"Frak! Sweet Pea, Raider just splashed one of the Swallows." Marko calls. "Toaster's going back to altitude." he advises. "Now on bearing one one four, carom two zero niner." he announces. "Scanner's still getting……" he says…"Wait one…" he adds, adjusting a knob slowly as the Raptor screams towards the mountains. "Unobtanium!" he announces. "Clean signal." he adds, starting to grin despite himself. "FTL's coming hot." he adds, turning to start to flip the appropriate switches. Though how they're going to blast of a gravity well with a Raider on their ass is anyone's guess.

"Bingo, Flasher. Alright, bring up the coordinates for the Cerberus, and start the clock, I'll hold us steady where we are." With the raider still high above them, and a few thousand feet of atmosphere between them and it, Leyla keeps the raptor in as close to a steady hover as she can, the ship jiggling only a little bit. Which is to say neither of them are being tugged out of their restraints.

t As Sweet Pea makes her plans to jump away from the planet's surface, the Raider gets a bright idea of its own. Those Swallows had to have been fired from _somewhere_. Being a nominal cyborg, triangulation isn't that difficult….

"Co-ordinates set." Marko reports, starting to reach for the magic key…

When a barrage of missiles storm down around them!

There are some controls that the pilot can always control, and one of them is the signal flares. Which Leyla fires, instinct taking over as she sees the missiles falling down around her head. She can't move from the spot, or Marko's calculations will be null and void and who knows where they'll end up, but she can hope that the flares are hot enough, bright enough to fool the missiles, as she spins the raptor up to approximate twelve o'clock, so that she can at least see the incoming missiles and try to avoid them. After all, they're just as buffeted by the winds as she is. Still, "Jump!"

"Oh Frak me, Sweet Pea…you are truly insane." Marko calls, grunting as the Raptor stands on it's tail as the flares lure away the missile storm. "Jumping in three….two…one…..Jump!" And with that, the ECO turns the magic key and the Underworld they've been sharing with Pluto does that funny ~closing in~ trick. With a flicker of pseudomotion, the Raptor jumps away….leaving its pursuer high and dry…

"You still want to wait to get married?" That's all Sweet Pea has to say about that, as the sim shows the raptor popping up right where Marko plotted, a safe distance, but a serviceable one, away from the Cerberus. 'Drive it like you stole it', indeed. Maybe being her backseater wasn't such a good idea after all. heh. "Good work with the swallows, Flasher, and we found the vein we were looking for. I'm going to call that one a win. But I want to work on a few more evasive techniques with this raider. Let's go grab the sim log and we can review it over dinner." The top of the pod pops, as Leyla unstraps herself and preps to disembark.

"Ha!" Marko chuckles as he unstraps himself, careful to send the log data to the computer for analysis and download. "Yeah, still looking to get hitched." he replies, hauling himself out of his chair and stretching. "That was fun." he adds, grinning like the God who discovered self-pleasure. "You are one hell of a pilot."

Leyla hops out of the sim, going through her post-flight ritual. Like that cigarette in bed after a good constitutional, she pulls one out of her pack and lights it up on the way to the terminal. "Yes it was. And thank you. But a pilot is only as good as her ECO." Unlike the viper, a raptor is a beast with two hearts, not one. "And you're one hell of an ECO." Onward and upward, to printouts, reviews and the glory that the mess.

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