PHD #071: Crash Course
Crash Course
Summary: Aboard the Eiolon, Sawyer and Kulko meet. Sawyer gets a crash course in rifles.
Date: 08 May 2041 AE
Related Logs: None.
Kulko Sawyer Barto 
Starboard Cargo Pod
The Starboard Cargo Pod is a massive, cavernous area. The aft doors are twenty feet high and at least as wide, designed for cargo-shifting ease, while the fore doors are regular human-sized hatches. The bullet-ridden storage containers and tanks of sulphuric acid have long since been carted away to the Cerberus for salvage, leaving behind an area converted primarily into storage. A smaller area has been split off for crew quarters, then sub-split with curtains for a basic Sickbay.
Post-Holocaust Day: #71

Just a few scant hours until the jump clock runs out, but Kulko is not nowhere to be found on the bridge. Rather, he's down in the pressurized cargo bay, sleeves rolled up to the elbow. He sits atop a small crate, next to a larger one that serves as impromptu table. A standard-issue Five-seveN pistol is in pieces; the Cerberus' JTAC finishes oiling the slide before he begins its reassembly.

Sawyer emerges out of the little curtained off area that's been set aside for an impromptu sickbay, still fiddling with the buttons of her newly acquired fatigue shirt as she moves. Once cleared of the area, she gives a glance back to it with venom in her eyes and rubs her shoulder ruefully. Seems someone was lax in her fleet required immunizations, and she's on a fast track to getting up to military par before the incoming mission. "Hey." She doesn't know Kulko from a hole in the hull, but that doesn't stop her from flopping down opposite him on top of someone's bedroll that got slung over here. For all intents and purposes, they're in this together, so there's no time like the present to make nice-nice with others. Unnervingly, perhaps, she just props her chin in her palms and watches him work.

Kulko replaces the slide in the frame, and slaps the empty magazine up through the handle. Racks the slide, chambering an imaginary round. Points the FN 'downrange', but neglects to squeeze the trigger. He sets down the weapon and offers a hand across the crate. "Miss Averies, yeah? XO mentioned you'd be taggin' along. Stephen Kulko, junior tactical and temporary XO. My job to make sure you come home in one piece."

There's a tick in her jaw when he says she's tagging along, but a smile touches Sawyer's lips regardless. "So you're the poor sucker who drew the short straw. You're certainly young enough to be a junior, but an XO?" There's a little rumple of her shoulders in what might pass off as a shrug. Best not to ruffle the feathers of the man tasked with making sure you come back all upright and walking. And breathing, best not to forget breathing. She shifts her weight to offer him her hand, "You can call me Sawyer, Stephen. You might find 'Miss Averies!' too long to shout right before you tell me to get my ass out of the way of trouble."

Kulko's grin is unabashed. "Yeah, well. XO of an unarmed tramp freighter that's liable to spend the rest of time floatin' in low Leonis orbit in six pieces. 'Possesses the necessary skillset, but expendable.' Key word is expendable." He shifts back to resume his own seat. "Still, I'll take that over sittin' round Cerberus scratchin' my ass and wonderin'. You get any time in down at the range since Warday?"

Sawyer looks at Kulko in a straightforward manner, no trace of humor in her voice as she imparts some damning words on the man. "Exactly one clip's worth, a little more then twenty four hours ago. With the Picon Five-seveN. This is also the part where I tell you I've never fired rifle I've been issued, much less /any/ rifle." She lets out a long breath which might just be a little bit shakey. "So my job is to lay low, take pictures and record everything for posterity. I'll try not to be too much of a headache, Stephen, but just in case I brought extra aspirin."

Kulko purses his lips and looks the reporter over for a few long moments, unsure at first of his response. "Not for nothin', Sawyer, but if it comes to a fight, we ain't got the luxury of sparin' a set of hands for the camera. You're gonna have a rifle, and you're gonna know how it works by the time we jump. If things go south, step 1 is find something to hide behind. Step two is peek up and show the toasters you've got teeth." Stephen rises from his crate and leans over to rummage around in the hastily-packed arms crate. A Leo Storm carbine is withdrawn, with a magazine to match. The JTAC offers the rifle over, grip first.

Michelle has arrived.

Sawyer opens her mouth as if to protest, but what's she going to do? Refuse to defend her own life and the other souls that volunteered for this mission. Her lips close into a stern expression, and she looks at the butt of the rifle being offered across to her with mild distaste. "I hate guns. My stomach lurches every time I touch one…" The words get mumbled, but they're on the record. She finally clasps her grasp onto it, hefting the weight requiring both her hands. One on the grip, the other cradling the barrel in her palm. Neither has fingers any where near the trigger. "Do I look like a natural, or what?" She tries to joke, but her tone is too flat.

The hatch the the central corridor creaks open and Barto enters. Clad in the Marine camo, the woman looks set for anything with a taught and serious expression on her face. She's talking with a Raptor pilot about a checklist as they approach. Getting closer across the cavernous bay, the Major dismisses the other woman and moves over towards Kulko and companion with a purposeful stride.

"That's fine. Ain't sayin start a collection. Hate em all you like, just hate the tinheads more." Kulko walks around the crate to stand beside Sawyer and nudge her into a more proper firing position with each comment. "Dig the butt into your shoulder. Nice and tight. Let it rest against the bone, not the muscle. Front elbow directly under the handgrip, not cocked out to the side. Cheek against the stock." He taps the side of the receiver, with its three-position safety. "Up is safe. Middle is semi-auto - one shot every time you shoot. Bottom is burst - three shots. Keep it on semi unless an' until I say otherwise. It's a reflex sight, so keep both eyes open, put the red dot over the Cylon, and /squeeze/, don't jerk, the trigger." He fails to notice the Major's approach, occupied as he is with the journalist's crash course.

Sawyer is a willing student, it seems, for everything Kulko is instructing her on just might save her life. Elbow gets tucked, cheek gets pressed to the stock, and the butt is firmly against her collarbone. The lieutenant might just notice the slightest tremble in the Journalist's frame, but she sure as hell isn't going to admit to it. "How bad of a recoil does this thing have? Am I going to get knocked on my ass?" She lifts her head away from the sight to ask, not even daring to fiddle with the safety. Major? What Major? Oh…/that/ one. All at once, Sawyer's arms go lax and the business end of the rifle gets pointed at the ground. "Sir." She's not really under any obligation to call Michelle that, but it seems prudent given the situation. And maybe it'll give Kulko a head's up.

Barto stops a few meters away, watching the proceedings with crossed arms about her chest. She seems critical of the pair, eyes picking apart both the Lieutenant and the woman he's with. Her jaw sets as those hawkish eyes once more survey the cargo bay and return to the man and woman as Sawyer speaks up. "Lieutenant Stephen Kulko? Sawyer Averies?" Her clipped voice almost dares the pair to defy or deny.

Kulko turns at Sawyer's reaction, takes note of the Major's presence, comes to attention and offers a crisp salute lickety-split. "Major. That'd be me. Welcome aboard MV Eidolon, the most… comfortable ship in the battlegroup. Don't mind the noises, Engineerin' tells me they're perfectly normal." As an aside to Sawyer, Kulko nods approvingly. "That's good. Never point a firearm at anything you don't want to destroy. Treat every firearm as if it's loaded, even when you know it ain't. Never put your finger near the trigger til' you're ready to shoot."

The barrel's pointed at the floor, and for one agonizing moment it looks as if Sawyer's tempted to prop it up and use it to lean on like a walking stick or cane but she refrains if only because of Kulko's praise. "One in the same." She tells the Major, unconciously shifting to a spine-rigid stance which might be more militaristic had she ever actually been in the military. Best behaviour, and all that. There's still time for her to get booted back to the Cerberus before the bus leaves.

Barto takes her sweet time coming to attention and returning the young man's salute. A few more steps forward and she finally speaks up again, hands clasping behind her back. Her attitude towards Sawyer, though unspoken, almost seems put-off. "Lieutenant. You must have some serious faith from Command to get this post. Hopefully you'll live up to it." A pause and she looks back to Sawyer. "I expect every member of this crew to perform at the top of their game. Commissioned officer or junior enlisted. Or civilian. ..Miss Averies? I would suggest getting into your combat fatigues. We start the jump clock in a little under a few hours. Once it starts, we should expect enemy contact at any moment." Her eyes then move back to Kulko. "We need to go over our landing operations before the clock starts. You may bring Miss Averies if you like as she may need some clarifications as to what and where. Meet me on the bridge when you are ready." She glances back between them again before stepping back and turning once more for the hatch. All business.

"Aye, sir. Be there in ten," is all Kulko has time for before Barto's on her way out. He's looking back to Sawyer, then, under a newfound time constraint. "Magazines. Twenty rounds, armor piercing. This lever here," a tap in the appropriate place, "ejects the empty mag; the new one snaps right in. If there's any problem - jam, misfire, whatever - eject the magazine and switch to your sidearm, and tell me about it." Kulko thumbs out all the rounds from the magazine and passes it over. "Alright. Load, shoulder, fire three bursts at that container over there."

Sawyer looks down at her olive green fatigues then back up. "Right. Change." She agrees is clipped little tones. At least black is better then the dreadful color she's already sporting. As she's offered a ticket to the floor show, though, she seems to brighten a few watts. But it seems Kulko isn't going to let her scurry off for her wardrobe change until he's through with his impromptu lesson. She turns back to him expectantly, her brown eyes alert, but when he tells her to open live fire in the cargo bay, those peepers widen. "Here?" Hopefully that wasn't a squeak in her voice, but with reticence, she finally lifts the weapon and does as she's told. With a 'here goes nothing' attitude, she thumbs the safety. He said burst, right? Two clicks down, and here she goes.

<FS3> Sawyer rolls Firearms: Terrible Failure.
<FS3> Sawyer rolls Firearms: Failure.
<FS3> Sawyer rolls Firearms: Success.
(for the record, the gun was unloaded, thus she didn't actual 'fire')

Kulko steps back and folds his arms to watch Sawyer's 'natural' - I.E., flawed - firing stance return after the first shot. Nods slowly. "Alright. Try and keep that form I showed you. Before you shoot, breathe in. Breathe out halfway, squeeze the trigger slowly. The shot should come as a surprise to you - will help keep you from flinching." He reaches out for the rifle at the conclusion of the exercise. "Try and practice some more if we have time on the way in. Let's not keep the Major waitin', though, yeah?"

Sawyer seems almost relieved as he takes the weapon from her, her shoulders sagging once she's relinquished the weight. "Just let me go throw on those other clothes…" She mutters, already fumbling to get out of the ones she's wearing as she walks back to where she's been assigned a bunk. There's a pause in her retreat, just long enough to throw a glance over her shoulder. "Thanks." Gets lobbed back to him before she's off at a trot to get spiffed up for the next round.

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