PHD #448: Frakking Tourists
Frakking Tourists
Summary: Circe and Van talk about the mission and downtime until Constin shows up and they leave the position.
Date: 20 May 2042 AE
Related Logs: Gemenon Stuff
Circe Constin Vandenberg 
Lampridis OP Alpha, Cliffs Overlooking the Town
Lakeshore Way winds for seven miles parallel to Lake Philomeides' eastern bank. A sleepy street that forms the westernmost boundary of Lampridis Town, its sides are lined by clusters of buildings constructed in vintage style: private cabins for rent, bed and breakfasts, bait and tackle shops, all-night diners in aluminum trailers, and even a single gas station whose broken neon sign ('GEMCO') survived the destruction in spite of the odds. Alas, relatively few of the facades remain undamaged: some have been blown apart by bombs; others, wrecked by gunfire. The same fate befell the very heart of Lakeshore Way: only two of its famous marinas survived intact, each extending about three hundred meters into the lake. Those fifty-odd sailboats that could be salvaged or repaired are now moored nearby available for the occasional pleasure cruise or private conversation.

At its southernmost terminus, Lakeshore Way intersects Highway 23, the four-lane freeway leading toward the rest of the town. Opposite the marinas, Memorial Drive stretches eastward toward the Sacred Circus. A green sign with white lettering points to the Cytherean Walk, a well-maintained trail and bike path leading to the Temple of Aphrodite Pandemos some five miles southwest.

Condition Level: Condition Level: 2 - Danger Close
Post-Holocaust Day: #448

It got down into the low fifties overnight, the lack of dense ground cover and the wind and humidity from the falls bringing these cooler temperatures around. Now, a few hours after sunrise, the air has warmed towards the day's highs in the nineties. Vandenberg, finishing up her turn at perimeter security, returns to the small dugout camp they have assembled and crawls up towards the muted and two-foot deep foxhole to peer out towards the town.

Having been awake for some time, unable to truly rest, Circe watches Vandenberg move about with that distracted idle interest. Without her pack on at the moment, she stretches out that recovering leg. The movement draws a sigh and she rolls a shoulder. As Vandenberg fully joins her in the fox hole, she nods her head, "Captain..anything?" She asks of the perimeter.

The medic otherwise gives room as best she can, curling her legs back to her side.

"Quiet night." Van shrugs in her prone position, eyeing the town and what little movement can be seen down there. "Just the patrols we saw last night. So far this looks about the same." She lifts the camera left beside the foxhole and turns it on, aiming it around. "A lot of people and the Cylons are armed like they are waiting for something. Or prepared. I don't like it. I figure we'll stick around here for a little bit longer and circle farther south and get a different angle on the town." She snaps a few pictures.

Circe looks towards the direction of the town in distant thought, her gaze narrowing. "Armed for what? Us or something else?" She questions. "And why are things alive here..why hasn't the radiation set in. I would love to get some soil samples, plants, anything really so that we can look it over. With some of the marinas destroyed, I find it hard to believe that it's safe to be here." She admits and presses her lips together into a thin line. It was all /very/ odd in thought and when vocalized.

Natalie shakes her head. "Most of the armed folks are the more able-bodied. Plus the skinjobs. See, I wouldn't be concerned about armed patrols. But when random people are walking around with rifles.. it means they're expecting to use their guns at a moment's notice. This doesn't strike me as a high crime area, either." Its all muttered. It all feels so very wrong, too, and it comes across in her voice. "Us or something else, indeed. Its tempting to walk into town and ask them before this is over." She snaps a few more photos of downtown. "Get soil samples and anything else you might need. Seeing geese and deer, though? It means these people ain't hurting for food as bad as they let on or they haven't hunted anything into extinction in the surrounding area. Yet. I'm guessing the rad counts are pretty low here, too."

"It's that picturesque front the resort towns put on and then further east..there are the slums. What do they want us for anyways if they have it so well here? I would think they would want to protect it from outside the military. It's dangerous inviting us in.." She says. Circe rubs a hand along her face and then shifts to look out with Vandenberg, drawing up her viewfingers to get a look again. "I brought the containers with me, I will see to getting samples today." She states. Doing her best not to bump Natalie as she takes those shots, she then says. "I honestly don't care what comes of this…it's been nice to be on the ground. In all honesty, I would rather die here than on the Cerberus. Speaking not of defecting, sir." She adds for all intents and purposes.

"There's something else, too, that has been nagging at me. The Cylons bombarded all the religious sites on Gemenon. Bad. It was part of their initial assault. But for some reason this place hasn't received anything. It looks, for the most part, intact. Other than a few bomb craters, of course." As if the thought compelled her, she aims the camera towards the temple and starts taking photos. "All are very good points, Lagana. They seem to portray themselves pascifists by the messages. Centurion patrols and small arms do not a pascifist make, though. What they need us for is beyond me." To the last, she smirks and looks to Circe from behind her camera. "I know what you mean, Specialist. Die here under the sun and stars, feel the warmth of natural light on your face? Sun came out this mornin and all I could think of was how nice it'd be to strip down and work on buildin m'tan back up." She grins and looks back to the camera's viewfinder.

"And why only certain models…is it because we know them, feel comfortable? False sense of security." She breathes. Circe doesn't like it and then as the comment about the sun is made, she can not help but grin. "that sounds nice..what about a dip in that lake. I think we could sneak away for a bit and let the men handle this." She grins with a jest. "Though I didn't miss the bugs.." A few welts from those bloodsuckers mark her neck and in pointed touch she rubs at them.

"Well these are the two models that have been the most prolific in their help - supposedly. Not so much with McQueen's model line since we've only run into him once. But the Elevens have done some good work. But they've also hit us hard, too. There was some kind of radioactive bioweapon the elevens were working on. It was nearing completion." The Captain sighs, eyes moving over the town some more. "I just think its too much of a coincidence that of all the religious sites on Gemenon to escape Warday, its this one that happens to become so important. Damn that makes my skin crawl." She snaps another photo of an Eleven walking around downtown. "I'd love to take a dip in the lake, actually. Still gotta worry about security, though. Damn that sounds nice, though. Especially once it gets to the real heat of the afternoon. Whew. We're gonna be some foul creatures when we get home." She even laughs a little with the whispered words.

"Either way, I still think that even if they are the same..that they can't all think alike." She admits. Circe gazes through the viewfinders, the humidity of the day starting to climb. "Yeah, the lake would be nice.." She says, thinking of that for the moment. "But its a little too out in the open…we would risk a lot." There is lamentation in her voice before she gives a bump to the other woman. "Besides, I didn't bring any civvies to blend in. We got the accessories to match." The medic intones, giving a motion to the guns. They can tote just like the natives.

"Yanno, I kind of agree, actually." Vandenberg sets the camera down and slides over into the foxhole with her binoculars. She settles in and sighs happily. -This- is home. "See, in every war, there are always those that sympathize with the other side. On our team, we have Bannik and his nutters. On theirs, we potentially have some two's and eleven's. This can't possibly be all of them, either. See, just layman's guess, but if they live in hegemony, they have no exposure to individualism. The longer you have exposure to a source outside that entropy - like real human - the more diverse they become. Like any machine, if you leave it in airtight packaging with any machine, it will stay neat and tidy forever. You take it out, use it, expose it to the elements, it will change and break and develop its own characteristics." She takes up her binoculars. "The question is, are you willing to bet the future of our race and the Gods on their change being positive?" She glances to Circe and then back to the town. "Bah. We'd never fit in. Our accessories are way too cool. You see any suppressed GMARs down there with ACOG scopes? Nuh uh. IR target designators? Nope. We're just too cool for school, Lagana."

"This may be true, but why are they armed then?" She asks, "Why have the need to tell us they need help and then arm themselves? If its not us I want to know what has them scared." Circe says and then smirks a bit more as the other woman sits back. Leaning against the side, the medic quips a soft laugh, "They could take some lessons from the marines of the Cerberus." She intones.

"What happens then if we find that we have no options here? What if we find that they are trouble and not allies? Do we just kill them? Do we try to force them out? There is more at risk here than just centurions and cylons.." She breathes. "There are humans..there is a viable source of life."

"Comes back to fear of something. There is a perceived threat. Either the Cylons are working to defend the humans with them, or the Cylons have them carrying around unloaded rifles, or any number of options. My guess is that there is something outside the town they expect harm from. Potentially us if we don't like what we find." Vandenberg drops the binocs lower and rests them on her knees. "Heh. They could learn a lot from us, I suspect." She smirks but keeps her focus on the town. "If we find they are trouble, we tell command.. or we die here. Either one works. As far as trying to affect their rescue?" Van shrugs. "That's not for us to decide. That's a command level decision. I could make a call if we wanted, but I won't deviate like that. This is too important. But I do know that the six of us can't help those people if they are in trouble. Especially not with a basestar in orbit."

A slow release of breath and Circe mutters beneath her breath. "I am glad to be here, to have a chance to find out what is going on, but the other part of me is more frustrated at being holed up." Restless. "I think we should go back to talking about the lake and sneaking off." A faint smirk paints her lips and the medic leans back. "Command will certainly have something to say, but it's never what we want, is it?" She asks.

That offending leg is stretched out, rubbing a thumb into her thigh. "There are always catches." A gaze towards the town has her going distant, thoughtful and withdrawn from the current conversation.

"I know the feeling," Vandenberg sighs. "Like I said, we'll pick up here in a bit and hike off to a different position. Maybe a new angle will provide better answers." She hopes, anyway. "Heh! Sneaking off to the lake? Relaxing back, sipping a margarita? Maybe rent a jetski and run around the lake at forty miles an hour.. feel the wind.. Gods that really does sound like a slice of Elysium, don't it? Being holed up on the Cerb is alright but the sun.. its hard to argue. Especially smelling the air." She inhales sharply. "You can smell the terra. The trees- the sweetness of their sap. The flowers from near the falls? You can almost taste it. But yeah.. there's the catch: Potential ruination or decimation of the rest of our species at the hands of the Cylons.. assuming rad levels are low."

"Anything smells better than recycled would do wonders for the spirit of the people too.." Circe says. "I wouldn't mind actually being able to worship on solid ground." The medic shifts, bending that leg and pulling it back to to her chest. She rubs at her calf a little, it's tense yet and still getting used to the extended range of movement she's been putting it through. "So, when we do get back, Doctor Ryder has taken me on as an apprentice. Going to see me through to Physician's Assitance and then to full Doctor. Special circumstances and all." She breathes.

"That's what also has me concerned," Natalie deadpans. "We get people down here, they're going to fall in love with being on terra again and forget alllll about the threats. Get doe-eyed for ideas and feelings rather than cold hard facts. Shit makes me ill just thinking about it." Vandenberg grumps at the sentiment, the two sitting in the foxhole at the edge of the cliff and looking down on the town. "Oh yeah? Still planning to go on missions with us? We need Corpsmen. Not that I'd discount another Doctor but there is always a need. How's the leg holding up, by the by?"

"It's moving, that is all that matters.." Circe says and then lets out a faint grin, "Don't think becoming a Doc is going to keep me from helping you guys. Besides, it's going to be a while. That stuff doesn't happen overnight." Her gaze, naked without the viewfinders can not see details, but who needs details when you got ground beneath you. Her hand lowers from her calf to the earth, moving to get herself more comfortable. "Truth is, I wouldn't blame em. I am already wanting to set up shop here." She smirks some. "Not going to lie abou tthat." She admits and then runs a hand up through her hair. "We going to head out of here soon or wait for the night? Being this close and moving during the day could be a bad move."

"Just don't forget about us. We need solid warriors who can fix and fire." To the part about setting up shop, Van quirks a brow. "Don't get too in love with it. We may have to nuke it." The Captain doesn't look like she is joking, either. "Scorched-terra denial operations. Seen it plenty of times." She picks up the binocs again and shakes her head. "Nah, we're fine. Get a mile or so to the outskirts of town. Trees and scrub will hide us up here just fine. We're not being idiots and smoking or throwing shit or firing off guns. We just pace our hike back from the edge about a hundred feet and we should be fine. Speakin of it, though, lets start packin up. Its gettin warm. I'd like to be in position in the next few hours with enough daylight to observe from our new position for a bit."

Constin trucks in from the backcountry side of camp, moving with a passing thought for silence, but standing fully upright and stretching his back, placed as far removed from the edge as he is. He narrows his eyes in scrutiny of the two forward observers, but doesnt raise his voice.

"Understood, sir." Circe says in a simple reply. Pushing herself up, the medic begins to make her way out of the foxhold, grabbing at her viewfinders along with her. Once away enough, she stands and arches her back to hear it pop. The talk of nuking is gone. The two women returning to the group once more. Circe moves to take up her pack and begin to pull it on, on strap at a time before she begins to repack and fix all the rest of her medical supplies once more.

Vandenberg rolls out of the foxhole as well and low-crawls away from the edge a few feet before rising with her camera and binocs. Spotting Elf, she gives him a nod. "Sergeant. We're moving out in ten. Let's get this site packed and returned to normal and get out of here." She turns back towards the cliff, slicing a hand towards the continuing landmass as it curves out around the town and the basin. "We're going to continue southbound a few more miles and see if we can get a better angle on this place. We've got good intel so far but I don't like this damned place one bit. Something stinks." She looks back at him. "You're the fill-in S-Two. Got any opinions?"

Constin grunts wordlessly along with a nod to Vandenberg's comment that they'll be moving out. Turning his narrowed eyes and mildly sunburned face (the only way Elf ever could have survived on Canceron was in the mines) in the indicated southerly direction, he nods again. When that last question is asked, however, he finally speaks. "They toting guns. Wouldn't have a snowball's chance in downtown Hades of defending theirselves if the Cylons decided to attack, which makes me think it ain't big, metal and shiny shit they're fixing to shoot at." A sniff, as he itches the side of his neck.

"Whether or not they would have a chance, perhaps they would try." Circe says. She looks up for the briefest of moments before she is busily tucking something on a chain away beneath her shirt. It's heavy and looks vaguely ring shaped. Smoothing her top into place, her helmet is lifted and unceremoniously placed atop her head and strapped into place. Checking a few more items, she is then standing, albeit slowly beneath the weight. Testing her leg, she winces some and then stretches it. "Lagana"

Vandenberg listens, giving a nod at the end. "Good thinking. Unless its just a last ditch defense and every gun counts. But you're right. If they had to fend off a determined Cylon attack.." She shakes her head. "Let's assume they're expecting fleshy enemies for now." She stoops and replaces the camera into her rucksack along with her notebook. Its a quick set of movements before she rises, slinging the pack on with her rifle being brought up as well. "Just need to bury the foxhole and we should be good to go." The woman turrets her eyes to Circe and looks her over. "That leg starts bothering you, you speak up. You walk yourself into a bad injury out here we will be short options. Keep that in mind." The Captain looks severe with the warning and moves to start kicking the dirt back into the hole.

Constin's only answer to Circe's supposition is a half shrug, as he kneels and sets to packing his field ruck. He glances up and nods once to Natalie, before swinging the pack around and shrugging into the harness. The spare barrel is positioned like an old fashioned sword, and the bullet belts are settles across his torso next. The bug Zasta at last, and the Gunnery Sergeant is set to move.

"Understood…legs fine. Just gotta get used to the terrain a little more. Should be working better tomorrow." A nod is given and Circe shifts her pack once more, giving that fox hole a look before it is closed off. Stepping back further away from it to get some distance from their vantage, she is waiting, testing that leg in silent observation and letting out a sigh. Her gaze lifts upwards to get a look at the sun, squinting as she smiles. It's contagious, vitamin D and all.

Vandenberg finishes kicking dirt back into the foxhole and secures the straps on her rigs. The woman takes a long breath and looks to everyone else. "Well, its been fun. And nice. Have to remember this spot. Let's use it for our rallypoint in case we have to evac from our next position." She swallows and reaches for her canteen. "Okay Cons, kick it out in the lead." The container is tilted back and she meets the sun the same way Circe does. "People are going to be jealous of the sunburn. It'll be fantastic." She grins and begins shuffling off.

"Hup," Constin returns to the instruction as the big man starts trudging out on point south, to skirt around for a different perspective on the town they've come so far to see. His only comment on sunbathing and jealousy back home is a deadpan, "Frakking tourists."

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