PHD #334: Cuddlebunneh
Summary: Evan and Vandy rendezvous on the couch.
Date: 26 Jan 2042 AE
Related Logs: Not sure.
Evandreus Vandenberg 
Rec Room
This huge room spans quite a lot of floor space, the support beams crisscrossing at even points throughout the room. The two sides are divided fairly between the Enlisted and Officers with an unseen line more or less running down the center of the room. A couple pool and card tables sit in no-man's land with a series of regular mess tables at the rear of the room, nearest a counter full of minor refreshments like coffee and bags of chips. Magazines and reading material are spread out over the couched seating areas and a few televisions are set-up with a couple of video game systems made available.
Post-Holocaust Day: #334

Evan loves his new little sister. But from time to time Evan's baby-madness and Quinn's over-protectiveness just… clash. And so Evan finds himself exiled from the s'bay to give mother and child some time to bond in peace without a hyperactive big brother flitting around trying to think up another excuse for mom to let him hold the little critter. But even exile isn't enough to take the shine off of the moment, and Evan's flopped on his back on one of the couches, legs crossed and propped up on top of the armrest as he stares at the words on a page of a book he's holding up over his face without really going so far as to read them.

He probably doesn't see Vandenberg enter from where he's sitting. So there's no telling how long she's been here. The Munchkin Stalk. Victims were spread evenly amongst the colonies. Sometimes its a good thing to be short. The woman is in her off-duty tanks and sweatpants, toting a mug of coffee like its attached to her hand. With the TV off, she drops lazily onto the couch beside Evan and takes up the remote with her free hand. "Hey, you mind if I-" Natalie doesn't finish as she looks to see who it is beside her. "Oh! Mister Evan. Sorry." That smile even comes through in her voice.

Evandreus peels the book back from over head, resting the spine on his chest as the sofa bounces a little to let him know someone's sat down next to his head. He looks up at Vandy all upside-down and imp-eyed. "Hey, Van! No, no problem, I'm not getting anywhere in this thing, anyhow. It'd probably help if it were in Colonial," he chuckles, closing the book with a subtle motion of his fingers and then resting it, closed, on his tummy. Some odd script on the cover lets Vandy know it's in Sagittarian. "Movie night?"

"I can't read much if it isn't. I know the feeling." She gestures the mug of coffee at the book. "I think I tried to pick that up once just to try and get myself back into Saggie and failed. Reading goes slow for me with that language. I'm better with the spoken word." She sips at the mug, tucking her legs under her and sitting back into the comfort of the couch. "Eh. I was considering watching something. Strung out on work and personal stuff. I was thinking I needed to watch something to just veg. How about you? Reading a book in a language you don't know?"

"I used to be trying to learn it. And then, y'know. Crap happened." Evan bends a knee and plants a bare foot against the arm of the sofa, wriggling his shoulders as he straightens his leg again, slithering cloyingly closer to Vandy for to initiate cuddle sequence delta. "I can still recognize the shape of the word for 'and,' but I'm afraid I've all but forgotten the alphabet. Anything you wanted to talk about? Or just stuff you need the idiot box to scrub out of your head?" Evan smiles kindly upward.

"Crap happened," she repeats with a dip of her head. "Indeed. My Saggie isn't great. I dated this guy who once described it as the language of squiggles and dots," she laughs softly, looking down at Evan as he scoots closer. She's heard the rumors around Medical. The Lieutenant pats her lap. "C'mon. You don't have to play bashful. My bark is worse than my bite." A sip of her coffee later, she takes a deep breath and nods slowly. "Aye. One thing I wanted to say was 'thank you'. When I was all shot up in Sickbay and you came to talk to me? Well, talk at me. I tried to write back but failed. I listened to what you said. Made me change the way I'm thinking. Reacting. I wanted to thank you for that. Its still a work in progress but I think I'm better for it. I really do appreciate it."

Evandreus would have gone for the lap, but with Van's legs underneath her, lap is a hard place to find. Still he twists his back at the invitation and uses one hand to keep the book from sliding down behind the sofa cushions and the other to grapple Vandy about the waist. Purr. "It does kind of dissolve into squiggles, sometimes," he'll admit freely. "Hey, it's okay. I'm glad I wasn't just boring the hell out of a captive audience," he jokes, tossing her up a self-deprecating grin. "And you came and took care of me while I was in medical, so we can call it even, how about that?"

Natalie slides those legs out from under her and settles the coffee onto the arm of the chair in what is obviously a practiced move. "No. You weren't boring. I had a lot of time to sit there and think about what you said. Then Captain Vakos came by and gave me a few gifts. I thought she hated me until then. It made me think hard about what I was doing to other people. Being a strung-out bitch really isn't my style and it never was. After being rescued I guess I forgot about that." She tries to smile in spite of herself, resting a hand on Evan's head to brush fingertips through his hair. "I smile more. I'm happier. I can focus better. I think people I deal with on a daily basis are reaping the bennies, too." She cuts him a wink. "You might consider us even but I'm going to have to work hard to pay that one back." She taps him once gently on the forehead with a big smile.

"Smiling is key." And Evan's doing so, in spades, despite his having been near to cut off of his antidepressants. A big loopy grin as he rolls his back, letting the legs have room to move under him without his full weight pushing down on them. And then there are fingers in his hair and his eyelids flutter closed. His secret weakness. Vandy has found it. Fingers in his hair are like an off-button, enough to make an Evandreus putty in anyone's hands. The poke to his forehead renders him alive once more, dark green eyes gazing up with a warm appreciation at the other side of this woman's leaf. "You're pretty when you smile, too." Far too gently-voiced to be a come-on, it rather sounds like something someone's grandmother might tell them. "You don't owe me anything, but if you keep playing with my hair I'll love you forever," he jokes warmly. "I'm a brother now," he then lets her know, out of nowhere, since it's been far too long since he's squeed about it.

"Smiling is key," she repeats, holding the same bright-eyed expression. But she blushes massively at the compliment. Getting hit on is probably normal for any single woman in the fleet but getting a genuine compliment seems to be something rare for her. She splotches up on her cheeks, forehead, and even that high part of her chest just below her neck. "Thank you, Evan," she whispers, looking away towards her coffee with a huge smile she tries to suppress. "And I'll start my payment plan with hair playing." Her fingers continue to tangle gently through his hair, running slow and curvy lines across his head. Turning, brushing, folding over. "A brother? I- wasn't aware you had a mother on board? Like, you really have a sibling now? What's up?" This seems to have thoroughly confused Natalie.

Evandreus's smile goes a little crooked, mischievous as he spots the splotches showing up, but he's good enough not to mention them, and he looks down to his book for a moment to give her a moment of semi-privacy in which she can blush and beam without restraint. But then his eyes go all glassy and unfocused as his off-button gets pushed once more, his neck going lax and head lolling down the side of Van's leg, ragdolling and letting the gentle push of the fingers roll his head slightly this way and that. He does a passable imitation of a bunch of spaghetti noodles, really. "Ghhaw…" is the first syllable that manages to escape his lips in such a state, but it's followed up not -too- long afterward with Real Words. "My mum's the Landings Officer on deck. I was never in her tum. Adopted, y'know? Which is just as well, 'cause I don't think I could pull off red hair," he jokes warmly. "But she just had one the normal way, yah?"

Natalie watches the Doe-y Noodle waggles around on her leg and she keeps grinning. So maybe she really does get her own happiness from making other people happy? That or maybe she's just plotting to kill with a weakness found. Probably not the latter. The woman seems all too content with Evan and coffee, her head tilted to the side as she watches him. Its almost motherly in its own way. "Ah, your adopted mom. Really? Didn't know that. Too nice. I didn't know she just- Gods, someone just had a baby on board?" Its a signal of a future. That life goes on. That smile on her face couldn't be blasted off with a battlestar.

"She did," Evan can affirm. He'd probably be particularly easy to kill, at the moment. Defenses not only down but non-existent, he gives himself over into Vandy's hands without a hint of resistance in his frame. "And this was no Real Life conception. We've really been on the flip side of existence -that- long. How frakking weird is that?" an undertone of a laugh lightens the rhetorical question. "Her name's Kal. Like Kal Trask— you know Boots?" he wonders. "He's a good friend of ours."

Natalie leans her head back to take that all in. It really has been long enough to conceive and birth a child. Almost a year. She takes a long breath, looking up at the ceiling as the memories wash over her. Actions, conversations, and people lost to the tide of that watershed and the days to follow. "Yeah," she breathes. Her fingers absently turn through the man's hair still, both hands trailing fingertips now. "No, don't know him. So a girl named Kal? Beautiful." Her eyes search the ceiling, a long moment passing before she looks back down to Evan with an odd expression. "I take it you're the doting type, aren't you?" Its a slight tease, though, turned wit ha smile at the end.

"Yup. Between Kal and the two Evans I delivered in the back of my Raptor, it looks like boys'-names-for-girls are totally in this year," Evan beams brightly even as he jokes. "Uhhhhh," the syllable gets drawn out into something near to a croak before it cracks with a grin. "I might dote from time to time. I actually got chased out of the s'bay to let mum and the shorter Kal have some time alone." But he's not bitter. If anything, he thinks it's kind of funny.

"Nothing wrong with boys names for girls. It can be wholelly adorable." Natalie winks at him and lifts her mug, sipping at it. "I think I can understand how that goes. We had a popular Sergeant in my last unit who got pregnant. When she finally gave birth there were fourteen men standing outside her room waiting to go in and meet the baby. Eventually she exploded at them to give her and her husband time alone. It was really cute seeing a bunch of big burly Marines tucking tails between their legs like they got swatted with a newspaper on the snout." She toys with a curl behind his ear and flops her head to the other side. "I've been hanging out with this girl on the Elpis. Someone asked me to look after her and its becoming more than just someone I'm checking in on. I'm old enough to be her mother and.. its kind of taking on that relationship. Kinda freaks me out."

"Oh? Who is it?" Evan wonders. He's generally familiar with the child population of Elpis, being close with Mama Astra as he is, "It's a lot of responsibility. But, from where I'm sitting?" He lets that hang there as the duality of its literal and figurative meanings twine together and tickle his fancy. "You've got a mum's touch, Vandy," he tells her, finally, shrugging up a shoulder, tickled as a finger happens past the top of his ear.

"Heh, she isn't a young one. She's mostly grown but still a little wobbly. Things are tough on the kids over there." Natalie shakes her head and looks back to Evan with his remark and she blushes again. Some might take that as a compliment. Most Marines? Questionable. Natalie obviously does. "Thank you," she whispers bashfully, continuing to toy with his hair and curls. "She's barely eighteen. But her guardian is giving up on life. Not eating. She's trying to find herself after everything she's missed out on. We both got to do some pretty crazy stuff, I'm sure, in our late teens and early twenties. She knows she won't. She's also kinda scared. Makes me worry." Worry more than she normally would. "Its that girl who has been writing the pro-military articles on the Elpis. Natalya Rassvet. I think Averies just offered her a job."

"I grew up in Leontinia," Evan remarks. He doesn't really need to, since his accent makes it pretty damned clear, but if there was any question that he got up to some serious craziness in his teens, that should clear it up to everyone's satisfaction. "Huh," he goes on to remark. "Well, I suspect that with both you and Soybean looking out for her, she can't help but do fine. We should hang out, sometime, though. The three of us. We could all watch a movie or play a game." Like that'll make up for the loss of her childhood. But he's trying.

Vandenberg chuckles at his place of birth. "Yep. Nooo doubts in the craziness." She keeps fiddling with his hair, turning it around her fingers now like she might play with her own during time alone. "I don't know Sawyer so I- I dunno. I guess I'm just nervous about who she is taking influence from. I know I'm far from the best influence too so that just compounds my paranoia." She shakes her head. "But she loves the military. I'm sure she would love to hang out. I'm teaching her some self-defense classes but I was going to have her come visit in Marine Country for a day and spend some time with us. I can let you know when she is around??"

"Do that," Evan invites heartily, though his eyes are starting to go all lazy again as his curls find a new home twined about Vandy's fingers. "Do you think she's going to join up?" he goes on to wonder. Since the girl is so enamoured of the institution. "Oh, Soybean's good people, don't worry," Evan assures Vandy. "She'll keep an eye on what sort of thing she keeps posting all over the walls over there." A lazy smile.

"She seems to like the idea. The girl loves the Marines but I don't want to force her into anything. All I can do is really offer windows into our world and let her see what we do. See if it is something that she wants for herself." Natalie stares blankly at the wall, still turning his hair absently. "I'm already proud of her. But I want the best since I know nobody else is looking out for her." The Marine wets her lips. "If we make it out of this mess with our skins attached, and she is a writer, she'll be important for generations. But I've got that stupid want for her to come with us and help fight. Maybe do both. I dunno." Vandenberg shrugs sheepishly.

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