PHD #062: Conversations with the Gods
Conversations with the Gods
Summary: Psyche unburdens a heavy heart to the Lords, with Bannik's help.
Date: 30 April 2041 AE
Related Logs: None
Bannik Psyche 
Ships Library — Deck 9 — Battlestar Cerberus
Racks of books extend deep into this room, nearly darkening the overhead lights towards the back. The shelves are neatly labeled to each category with nearly everything represented here. Fiction, Sci-Fi, Romance, and everything down to comic books has been loaded up onto the shelves. A smaller research area at the back has a large table for maps to be opened-up. Nearer the door is a small library of movies that covers some of the most recent blockbusters and flows through some of the more campy movies from about two decades before. Next to the door, a Petty Officer can usually be found at a desk to help someone checkout their selections.
Post-Holocaust Day: #62

Bannik is seated in one of the couches in the library, a thick, musty book in his hands. 'Basics of Air Engineering Fabrication.' If these are the basics, Bannik would hate to see the 'advanced' topics. He's occasionally pushing his glasses back up on his nose, peering down at the pages.

Psyche enters… quietly. Which for a library isn't all that unusual, except… that it's Psyche. On Fridays (and all those other days ending in Y), Psyche bounces and bounds like a cocker spaniel on speed. But today she's… muted. She stops just inside the door, blinks a few times as though she's never seen a bunch of books before, and then a few more times — like she's never seen a deckie before. Finally, she heads in the direction of the latter, hands in her pockets. "Hi," she whispers.

Bannik glances up at the entry of the Viper jock. Well, this is different from the last time he saw her. "Hey, Bubbles," he says with a small smile touching at the edges of his lips. "You all right?" He gestures to the seat next to him.

Psyche sits, shaking her head. "I'm… kinda lousy, actually," she replies softly, pulling a knee up and propping her chin atop it. She fiddles with the laces of her boot, lashes lowered. "I don't do sad well. And… I guess there's been sadness growing inside me… for a while now. And it's freaking me out." She sighs. "What do you do when you're sad?"

"Well." Bannik falls silent, as if seriously considering the question. "I pray, for one. Because when I have lots of worries and lots of troubles, I take them and I give them up to the Gods. And I figure the Gods know what to do with them, even if I don't. Helps them be taken off my shoulders, you know?"

Psyche pulls her other leg up, wrapping her arms around them, making herself into a ball. "I've been to the Chapel a couple of times, lately," she nods. "I don't know who to pray to, though. I don't even know how to pray." She looks up at the ceiling and swallows. "Isn't that stupid? I feel like there's a wall — and an emptiness, too. Both." She shakes her hair back, threading her fingers into it and cradling her head. "I thought… maybe if I read the Scrolls." She blinks, then asks, "They do have the Scrolls in libraries, right?" Like it might be sacrilegious to have them on the same shelving system as smutty romances and spec-fic novels.

"Just pray to the Lords, all of them, if you don't know who to pray to," suggests Bannik, tilting his head to Psyche, watching her closely, his book forgotten for the moment. "And there's no real trick to praying. Just tell them what's in your heart, as earnestly and honestly as you can, and they'll know what to do with it. They know you better than you know yourself, Bubbles. You just need to open up to them."

Psyche blinks at Bannik, looking truly stricken — as though he'd read her mind, or at least gotten to the heart of the matter. "Oh, Banni…" Her eyes swim with tears and her breathing hitches; she places her face in her hands a moment, taking a shuddering breath and then wiping her eyes. Another breath. Okay. NOT gonna bawl. "Okay," she nods, sniffling a little. "I… I think I can do that."

Bannik takes his book and places it off to the side, on the floor near them. He then takes his hands and turns them over, palms-up, so he can reach out towards Psyche, though not quite taking her hands. "Would it be easier if we prayed together?" he asks. "Sometimes it's not so hard if you know you have someone praying with you."

Okay, now the tears spill over. Psyche's face crumbles and she nods, putting her hands in Bannik's. She bows her head, unable to speak just yet… tears falling silently into her lap. Finally, she whispers, "C-Can… could you start?" She laughs a little — a soft, wet sound. "I… I feel like I've never met Them. I don't wanna barge."

Bannik takes Psyche's hands, squeezing them tightly. "Of course I can," he whispers. He is silent for a moment before he begins. "Lords of Kobol, hear our prayers. You know how we long for You, even when we seem the most cut off. Hear the cries of Your daughter Bubbles. Help her open her heart to You, and hear not just what she says, but what You know is yearning to be said, from the recesses of her heart." He then turns over to Psyche. "You go ahead now," he whispers. "Just talk to them."

Psyche swallows hard and nods. She's silent a long moment, as though at a loss… then finally just whispers, "Uhm… hey." Like the Lords just kind of meandered up and joined them at the table. "It's… Psyche. Athenos. From Caprica. I…" She takes a deep breath, eyes shut tight, worrying her bottom lip in her teeth. "Look… You know I came here so… it wouldn't all be pointless, right? I mean, so I wouldn't be. But I still feel… I don't know if anything I'm doing matters. If anything matters, if anything makes a difference. If we're killing each other… what's the point, really? What's wrong with us? Do You really love us?" Another hard swallow, tears flowing again. She whispers, "Do You really love me? And… if so… why?" She sniffles. "Sorry. That was a kind of pathetic question, wasn't it? I don't want to waste Your time with pathetic questions. But… I'm really lost, Guys. Can You make me understand? Because all this thinking around in circles is… really painful and achey. Help me… help me be meaningful. Help me… help me love everyone so I want to fight and die for them. Help me be a hero. Please. And thank you."

"So say we all," Bannik concludes the prayer for the two of them, patiently silent throughout the entire pouring out of Psyche's emotions. He squeezes her hands tightly, bringing his gaze to meet hers. "Was that so bad?"

"I guess not?" Psyche ventures, still holding Bannik's hands, shrugging up a shoulder to wipe her cheeks. "I still feel kind of bad for bothering Them. And small. But…" She smiles faintly, still sadly. "I guess it was good to babble that all out, instead of… I dunno… writing bad poetry or something."

"You don't bother Them," says Bannik, encouragingly. "They're always there, waiting there, just wanting to hear you call out to Them. I mean, they're /gods/, Bubbles. You think they need to get everything done in twenty-four hours like we do? It doesn't work like that." He smiles. "I think if you keep doing it, it'll get easier every time you do. It's not just do it once and it all goes away. It's a lifetime thing."

"Praying, you mean?" Psyche whispers, nodding. "I guess so. I mean… that makes sense. If you want to have a relationship with someone, you spend a lot of time with them. Learning about them, talking to them. I guess it's the same with the Lords?"

"Yeah. Exactly." Bannik nods his head encouragingly. "The gods aren't some cosmic vending machine. You don't go to them just when you need something. You have a /relationship/ with them."

Psyche tilts her head, cheeks still wet, eyes red… but she looks touched and pleased by the idea, smiling softly. "That's a really lovely idea." She nods, giving Bannik's hands a quick squeeze before retrieving her own, wiping her eyes. "I… uhm… I've been really wanting that. Hurting for it. To be known. Y'know?" She searches Bannik's face for understanding. "It's an awful thing, when no one knows you. It's scary. Like when you die, you might really be dead."

"And if you really do want it, if you open yourt heart to the Gods and tell them that, then they'll help you with it," says Bannik, nodding his head in agreement. "Even when it's hard, even if you slip sometimes — gods know times get so busy that sometimes I forget my prayers — they'll forgive you and stay with you."

"That sounds… like love. Perfect love." Psyche flashes a fragile smile. "I guess only the Gods can do things perfect, right?" She gives herself a little shake, pulling her outer tank-top up to give her damp face a good scrubbing. "Oh. Wow. Lords. I'm so sorry, Banni. I didn't mean to… just dump all over you like that." She takes a breath. "Last night was awful. I'm a little frakked up."

Bannik chuckles softly. "Yeah. I guess so. But we can try to be perfect, and they understand we're fallible and make mistakes. So I figure it's all good. As long as we do good enough, Elysium will be there for us." As for the last bit, he shakes his head. "It's really no trouble, Bubbles. I'm a Deckie. If I can help fix pilots as well as birds, well, that means I'm just doing my job."

Psyche laughs. "You're really pretty amazing, y'know?" she smiles at Bannik, all warmth and admiration. "Have you ever thought about moonlighting as a Chaplain? Doesn't the Sister have assistants, or something?"

Bannik shrugs his shoulders, though a small smile touches at the edges of his lips. "I'm not sure I'm a Chaplain, Psyche. I mean, I just went to religious school once a week because my Mom made me. I'm just trying to remember what the Sisters taught me to try to help cheer others up. I don't know all the fancy theology or anything."

Psyche shakes her head. "That's just book leaning, though, isn't it?" she asks. "I mean, sure, I guess the Theology's important, and I'm sure it helps, but… just now… you didn't have to quote a single chapter or verse to me, right? You just used what was in your heart." She rests her chin on her knee again, shrugging. "That's the stuff you can't learn. That's, like… a talent. Something you just have in you. And don't the Lords say something like… we're supposed to use our talents, the ones They gave us?" Innocent of religion as she might be, you just cant live in the colonies without picking up a verse or two by osmosis. "I think you'd make an amazing Chaplain, Banni," she says sincerely.

"Aw. Thanks, Bubbles. That's really sweet of you." Bannik blushes despite himself, the color reaching his cheeks. "Well. Uhm. I don't know. Maybe I'll have to think about it a bit. I mean — right now, I've got my hands full just trying to bend out birds and take a look at Cylon technology, much less try to be a chaplain. But. Yeah." He tries to shake it off. "Maybe I'll think about it."

"Definitely think about it," Psyche affirms, nodding — so emphatically she and her goldilocks all bounce a bit. Her smile is bright and sunny, once more: she's coming back to herself. "I mean, I've never heard anyone explain the Lords the way you did, y'know? That it's a relationship, and it's all about love. Maybe people get too caught up in the chapters and verses, and they forget, or something but… your insight's really special. It's exactly what I needed, y'know? And… I'm probably not soo weird that there aren't other people who need the same thing, right?" She grins, wrinkling her nose.

Bannik's cheeks remain red, touching around his ears. "Well, thanks, Bubbles. I really do mean that. I'll — yeah. I'll think about it. But for right now, I think I ought to get back to working on those birds from last night." He ducks his head. "And if you ever want to pray together again, just let me know, huh?"

Psyche pecks a kiss on Bannik's cheek, wrapping her arms around him and delivering a BIG hug. "I will," she sighs happily, sounding a little choked up with affection and gratitude. "You are absolutely the best. Thank you so much, Banni."

Bannik is taken by surprise at the hug, but returns it, giving Psyche an awkward little squeeze. "You're welcome, Bubbles. Gods watch over you out there." He lets her go and then slips up to his feet. He's off, then, back to the Birds that so badly need his attention.

Unless otherwise stated, the content of this page is licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 License