PHD #339: EVENT - Gravity
Summary: For the MPs assigned to security detail on Elpis, what goes up, must come down.
Date: 31 Jan 2041 AE
Related Logs: The Forces of Reaction.
Kincaid Rose Callie Vandenberg Aurelia Lady Samuel Magnus Sholty NPC Polaris 
Living Quarters - MV Elpis
The freighter has living quarters sufficient to accommodate around 800-1000 people, divided up into rooms of varying sizes. Each room holds multiple sets of bunkbeds, most commonly housing between 10 and 20 people, none housing fewer than four and some as many as 60. For each bed, there is a locker of some sort. These rooms take up several floors, and are arranged around a central 'courtyard'. Each floor has at least one common room, outfitted with scavenged couches and televisions, separate heads for men and women, and laundry facilities. The rooms are pretty barren — plain military-issue bedding on the bunks, and nothing currently adorning metal walls or floors. The lighting is unforgivingly fluorescent, and there is a constant soft hum of generators and ventilation systems in addition to the other noises common to areas housing hundreds of people in relatively close quarters.
There is also a galley in a room off the living quarters, with a kitchen of its own, churning out food served in a buffet line much like on Cerberus. There are a few long tables that match and then a smattering of others of all shapes and sizes, the chairs equally mismatched as they are arrayed around them.
Post-Holocaust Day: #339

The nice thing about serving aboard a civilian ship is the institution of those day-night cycles completely abssent from military vessels. Here, the lights in the yawning central atrium flicker off at midnight sharp, so as not to wake those hundreds of civilians turning in after another day's labor — as volunteers aboard Cerberus, as supervisors and pickers in hydroponics, or as the stereotypical shiftless civilian layabout that has a few in the military so steamed. The relative darkness might be comforting to those soldiers used to bright lights and well-lit berths at any hour of the day. But others don't particularly enjoy moving through dim corridors with naught but floor lighting and fluorescent wall-strips to guide them, particularly in a restive atmosphere such as the one that's pervaded the freighter for the past few weeks.

But that's something the new arrivals won't have to deal with for some time yet, if by some time you mean the ten minutes between 2350 and 0000 where the graveyard shift takes charge.

"Evenin', sir," calls the head sergeant in charge, striding toward the new arrivals from Cerberus. "Frak it feels good to be able to say that. Glad the Cylons incinerated whatever cocksucker in the Fleet decided we needed to work twenty-four-seven. My boys'll be out in just a moment — they're just getting a few snacks from the galley, and by that I mean a pretty new redhead just flipped to our shift." Her thick mouth breaks into a crude and knowing leer. "They might be a while." Marines will be dogs.

Rose is seated at one of the central tables in the living areas, apparently having been off work for quite some time. Stacked up are a number of folders, likely reports and other scientific and personnel information regarding the hydroponics effort. Thick black glasses perched on the end of her nose, she chews idly on an eraser as she goes through her paperwork. Ahh, bureaucracy.

Callie is supposed to be studying and for the last two and a half hours she was successful up until she got to the chapter about applied something or another, it rendering her brain enough to lull her into a semi-doze, cheek against page, eyes barely able to stay open. There is a cup of coffee close to her but it's grown cold over an hour ago, forgotten.

Vandenberg nods to the Sergeant and heads over towards her. "Ain't it the truth. Though I'd be happier in my bunk. Just- while we've got the peace, let's keep it down with the raised voices. Enjoying the peace is always a plus." The Lieutenant rests her thumbs in the pockets of her pants. "Just have your people cycle out towards the Raptor when you can. We're going to need a volunteer from your group to take the swing over on Deck Eleven tonight because one of the guys from Able caught some kind of flu. I think the little punk is just shirkin for a hangover, though." She glances back to the rest of her team. "Let's get settled for the night. Kincaid, Blaine, you're with me."

Adjusting her glasses, Aurelia is busy making notes it seems on the progress of the hydropnics gardens. "Figures they have a medical student take notes." she mutters. She peers out as several of the marines pass her by. The former medical student sighs deeply. "Hmm." she puses closing down her paper for a moment.

Lady mirrors the leer with a viciously lecherous smirk, heading up to the shift-change post with a slight swagger despite the metal cane she's walking with. To her credit, she hardly seems to rely on it, but she keeps it around in the off-chance she needs it— either for walking on or smacking someone with. "Peh," she dismisses the notion, "None of 'em'd last more than fifteen seconds at a free ride," she posits. Dogs, indeed. Dog squadron certainly has no dearth of them with Lady amongst their number.

When the sergeant speaks of 'pretty new redheads,' Kincaid just lowers his eyes and examines his boots. It must be the vestiges of sexual harassment training left from his civilian days. "On you, sir," agrees the Lance Corporal, nodding towards the S-3. "Anything happen during the last shift that we should know about, sarge?"

Samuel nods a little bit as he hears Vandenberg's words, "Yes, sir," he offers quietly, looking around for a few moments, before he looks back to the others at Kincaid's question.

"After all that shit that dripping prick Piers pulled with the S-3 over there, you'd think we'd see something interesting. But — naw. Quiet. All we've got are a bunch of frakking nerds sitting at tables and taking up space. It's the end of the godsdamned world and what're we doing? Playing titties-out nursemaid to some godsdamned people with books." The sergeant evidently didn't get the memo about keeping her voice down, but she was a drill instructor before she arrived aboard Cerberus. That's just how they talk. As for Vandenberg's question, she tilts her head to evaluate the relative fitness of those four — now five — Marines slouching out of the galley, their faces and expressions long. "Sure, they'll volunteer. Which one of you pissed me off the most today?" she asks rhetorically, before suddenly standing up straight. "And where the frak is Sholty?"

<FS3> Aurelia rolls Alterness: Failure.
<FS3> Callie rolls Alertness: Bad Failure.
<FS3> Rose rolls Alertness: Great Success.
<FS3> Aurelia rolls Alertness: Success.

Vandenberg just looks on as the Sergeant mentions Piers. Her eyes drift around the room and finally settle on the Sergeant once more. "Stow the opinions, Sergeant. Keep your mouth in check or I will." Apparently the Lieutenant is in a foul mood tonight. She has been most of the day, though. Ever since about lunchtime. She looks away once more. "You lose Sholt someplace or is he just in the head? If he's missing, your team isn't leaving this ship without him."

Rose's pencil snaps against the page she was writing on. She glances up, and then nervously, towards the marines. "Um, did you hear that?" She asks in their general direction. Her eyes fall on Vandenberg, a marine she knows. "Did you hear that?" She reiterates. "Sounds like shouting. From the galley. And… I think it's a fight?" She blinks, then begins gathering up her papers.

Lady casts a glance to those with their faces in books and papers. "I read a book, once," she remarks, mostly to herself, though if anyone cares to listen she's not whispering or anything. "I came out of it okay, but you oughta've seen the book after." Fight? Word of a fight duly pricks up her metaphorical ears. "Sir?" That's shorthand for 'permission to lay shit out, sir?' and aimed at Vandy.

The engineer blinks open an eye that inched a bit closer to being closed, her expression as 'crumpled' as her coveralls are, that cheek red and temporarily wrinkled due to the paper. "The frak…" Yawning, she shakes her head instead. Nope. She didn't hear anything and is, in fact, about to fall asleep entirely.

"Oh, frak," murmurs Kincaid when the word 'fight' comes from Rose. That, it seems, is just what they need right now. He also turns his eyes to Vandenberg, looking for — direction.

Samuel pauses as he hears Rose's words, "Heard what?" Frowning a bit as he hears what's added, looking towards the officer now, like the others seem to be. Waiting for the orders now.

"No shit we're not going back with that baby-faced frak. Gods damn, el-tee, you been to the beach or something?" The sergeant grins that leering grin as she pats the stock of her assault rifle. "Cause that's gotta be a metric ton of sand you've got down in what I'm sure must be your really yeasty — " And then another cute redhead — the ship is full of them, apparently — says something about a fight. "I'm on you, sir." All business, now.

The Marine S-Three apparently didn't hear anything. She looksto Rose and lofts a brow. She glances quickly in the direction of the hallway and steps over. "Sorry, did you say you heard a fight, Miss Ibbhanas?" Her hands slip out of her pockets, one moving to the pouch with the metal baton inside and resting there. Her head wheels on the Sergeant and Vandenberg looks suddenly ready to physically remove the other woman's head through sheer force of will. "I warned you, Sergeant. Remember that." Van spits pure venom. Something -really- must have pissed her off earlier. She then looks to her team. "Lady, Blaine: Partners. Kincaid, watch my back. Sergeant, your team back us up and try to raise Sholty on the radio. That's a frakking order this time you damned well better follow." She then moves off at a jog towards the Galley, the others hopefully in tow.

"Of course I'm not saying that we deserve what happened!" yells an agitated Magnus at a group of people. "I'm saying that the field of Artificial Intelligence has a lot of potential and that we just need to do things differently!" There are other people yelling stuff at him as well at that given moment. "No! No! That's not what I'm frakking saying. No!" Now there's are sounds of struggle and Magnus shouts "NO! NO! DON'T!. STOP IT! NO!" and then what can be heard, are heavy footsteps of Magnus trying to run away. "Get the frak off me! Stop!" Then there's a loud noise, as if something hits the floor. There's a lot of things being shouted, coming and going but soon, Magnus manages to reincorporate himself and staggers outside of the Galley, already bleeding pretty bad from the face. He has a deep cut on his temple, another on his forehead, his nose seems to be bleeding pretty badly as well. "Please…please…" mouths the man as he staggers, falling to his knees only to try and stand up again, to resume his exit.

Looks like only one side involved in this little dispute about the merits of artificial intelligence is talking. With words, that is. As the battered man stumbles out into the atrium, four figures follow — three dressed in absurd plaid castoffs recovered from the Raptors' myriad shopping raids from Ewe Aerilon and one dressed in — oh dear. The one in the lead, the one whose wiry legs let him chase down the fallen man far quicker than the wiry civilians behind him?

Yeah. Looks like they found Sholty. His young face is a mask of rage as he smashes the fleeing man in the side with the tip of his left boot, sending the scientist sprawling to the ground. "How about that shit for doing things differently?" he snarls. "Tell that to Arkat. Tell that to Hester. Tell that to all the good men who died because people like you decided — "

And the rest of that is lost as the other civilians catch up, brass knuckles catching in the light.

Aurelia raises her head and leans up from her wall. She begins to walk towards the crowd. She hears talking and slows dow.

<FS3> Aurelia rolls Alertness-10: Success.

Seeing the bloodied man stumble out of the Galley and trying to get away obviously angers Van. Seeing Sholty among the small mob, though, infuriates her. "SHOLTY! STAND! DOWN!" she yells. That quick-step jog is now at a full-on sprint - right for one of the men with the brass knuckles. She's already whipped out her metal baton and extended it to the full length, swinging it low. "You have until I get there to back the frak off!!" she warns, charging at the other men.

"For the love of the Gods, please don't pull your guns. Please don't pull your guns." Kincaid has very simple hopes for this engagement. But even as he says it, he's running for the mooks beating on the Civilian, looking to haul him off and get him focused on the Marine in front of him rather than the defenseless guy on the ground.

And Magnus does get hit of course, and falls violently to the ground. He coughs and tries to breath but it has turned into something very difficult after that kick. The man lifts one arm as if trying to protect himself and coughs again "No! Please!" He coughs again and tries to drag himself away from harm, letting drops of blood fall from his face to the metal floor and be brushed by his clothes as he continues to slowly move away. "Please…" There's not much he can do right now, other than to resist as much as he can but at this point…yeah, complicated situation for him. Those brass knuckles hit and every time they do, they open a new wound that starts bleeding, cutting through his skin like nothing. He gets a new cut right over his right eyebrow and as he chokes, he gets to say "It…It wasn't….my….fault"

Raising her head she stars backwards as something catches in reflection off of her glasses, Aurelia watches the fight and then tries to find a way to where the flash occurred.

Hurrying forward now, Samuel growls a little bit as he tries getting between Magnus and those attackers. He doesn't say anything as he moves forward, letting the others do the talking for now. Giving those attackers those moments to back off, he readies his own baton now. After all, common sense isn't one of the defining characteristics of an angry mob.

Callie peeks an eye open but is still too groggy to notice anything is amiss. The subject of engineering must have been particularly numbing this evening.

Diving for cover, likely behind a tumbled chair or table, dives Rose. She's no combatant, although she manages to keep her cool and not shriek… too badly. Instead, she just clutches her work protectively to her chest. "It was better when I couldn't see," she whimpers to herself.

Lady sees red as the struggle breaks into the open, and her little smirk spreads into a feral snarl as she lags behind for a moment, then beats feet over in time with her folk. Whila Van addresses Sholty she's got words for the other men, a deep, throaty growl in a falsely masculine tone, "ALRIGHT YOU LIMP-DICKED LITTLE SHITS! I WANT YOU GUT-DOWN ON THE FLOOR WITH YOUR HANDS BEHIND YOUR HEADS AND THE NEXT TIME ONE OF YOU MOVES YOUR FRAKKING LIPS IT'D BETTER BE TO LICK MY FRAKKING CUNT. DOWN DOWN DOWN DOWN DOWN!"

<FS3> Rose rolls Alertness-10: Success.

Sholty leads the way. If he hears Vandenberg — or his sergeant — screaming obscenities and ordering him to stand down, it doesn't seem like he cares, instead drawing back his heel and smashing it into the man's right elbow. A dusky civilian who seems to share the sentiment slams his bare knuckles into Magnus' chest, a blow that hits the exact same spot where a pair of brass knuckles crunched into his soft and somewhat flabby stomach. And to add insult to injury, the last guy — who's got a simple ring of brass looped around his hands — doesn't even bother using them, following Sholty's example to step down hard on the scientist's precious fingers.

But when the Marines close in, the nerve of this furious mob seems to waver. Such is the way with cowards, after all. Even before the lieutenant's baton has finished its silver arc in the air, even before Lady finishes that stream of obscenity-laden orders, two of the three civilians are already making a break for it, pushing past chairs and tables in an effort to hinder pursuit. The dusky-skinned attacker slams Callie's head into the table as he makes a break to the starboard stairwell; the blond crew-cut guy with brass for knuckles upends Rose's pencils and books as he dashes to port. But Sholty and the dark-haired fellow don't let up, tackling poor Magnus and bringing him to the ground. Down goes the Marine's elbow on the man's pulsing throat, and the light of cold calculation shines in his eyes as he leans in. Hard. His partner in crime has moved on to Magnus' other set of fingers, intent on making sure he never codes again.

<FS3> Opposed Roll — Kincaid:Athletic vs Hater2:3
< Kincaid: Good Success Hater2: Good Success
< Net Result: DRAW

When the mob buckles and breaks, Kincaid doesn't divert himself to go after the two beating on Magnus. Instead, he's hurtling through the chairs, trying to run down one of the fleeing attackers. "Freeze, frakker!" calls out the MP, meeting him stride for stride. He's still a few steps behind, but Danny is keeping right on his tail. Rather than go for his baton, his hands are near his cuffs, as if to have them ready if he closes the distance.

Over the commotion, Rose shouts, "They're taking pictures!" From behind her safety hidey-hole behind tumbled furniture. "Second floor! Lieutenant Vandenberg! Second floor, a cameraman!"

With her face already close to the table there really isn't much space for the attacker to cause Callie too much damage but she's not coming out of it unscathed as, once her head is lifted, a bloodied nose and mouth will be revealed. Blinking back tears, she looks around, whimpering out of pain as well as confusion, not comprehending the fact that someone did this to her.

Magnus can just try to cover himself with his arms, but he is not being very successful at it. The kicks land, the punches land. When the Marine attacks his neck and presses against it, Magnus starts to choke, being able to mouth a "Please….no" that is barely audible. There's is a bit of a muffled scream coming from him when the other man stomps on his fingers. The man tries to fight it but he can't, he is not a fighter, he is just a Professor…well, ex Professor. "Plea…." but his vision becomes blurry, and he can't speak anymore, he is slowly fading into unconsciousness. He blinks a few times and everything becomes slow motion for him, until…..darkness.

Van wastes no time. The other two running, Van plows ahead for Sholty. She doesn't even slow down on the approach given his chosen location for attack. The Marine Lieutenant takes a softball-style swing with her baton and slams it as hard as she can into Sholty's mid-section on the pass. The woman's boots skid on the floor as she turns at a stop and takes the baton like a bat and moves to swing for his arm this time. "Sergeant!! Take your team after the other two! FOLLOW KINCAID!! GET That-" WHAM- "Cameraman, too!!"

"I said DOWN, betches!" Lady reminds those who go to flee. But she doesn't so much as raise a fist to civilian flesh to back up her harsh words. Instead, after scanning the region, she twists her upper body with an increasing force of torque, lifting up her cane from the floor and swinging it free at the rogue marine's head like she -means- it. Out for blood, that one. Or brains on the wall. Fortunately for… well, probably fortunately for both of them, the blow only clips the side of his head. Probably doesn't feel good, but that could have been a hell of a lot worse.

Lifting his baton in an attemt to get to somewhere around the midsection of that one attacking the Professor's fingers, Samuel swings, managing to hit the man with it. Nodding a bit as the hit seems to knock down the target, he takes a few moments to consider how things are going. Freezing momentarily at the mention of the cameraman, and seeing how the others seem to be taking care of Sholty, he starts making his way in the direction of the position indicated for said cameraman, as fast as he can. Baton still kept ready.

Sholty's fighting like a man possessed. There's a reason he survived those long and lonely months on Leonis — and it's the memory of those horrific days that's keeping him upright despite the combined efforts of three equally furious Marines. Give him another few moments and his work will be done. But the sight of him is too much for dark-haired man to bear, and after letting out a guttural grunt, the last civilian finally breaks. He dashes off: directly into the batons of the sergeant and her men, who with furious blows bring him down.

"Frakking a!" the sergeant shouts. "Derrick, Leon, unfrak yourselves and get up the starboard stairs! Tomlinson, get on Corporal Tubby before he lets that son of a bitch go!" This is most likely a reference to Kincaid. And then — as the man beneath tries to get up and flee — she brings the butt of her pistol down on his head, sending him collapsing to the deck in a heap. "Godsdammit, Derrick, watch the FRAKKING — "

Chairs, evidently, as both he and his buddy trip over the makeshift obstacles being flung willy-nilly by the dusky civilian. Kincaid, in the meantime, is huffing and puffing but keeping pace, and the blond looks behind him with desperation as the port stairwell finally draws near.

<FS3> Opposed Roll — Kincaid:Athletic+20 vs Hater2:3
< Kincaid: Success Hater2: Success
< Net Result: DRAW

Vandenberg scores the last hit across Sholty's left arm - probably at least bruising the bone as she slips on a bit of blood on the floor. As Sholty collapses, Van barks at the Lance beside her: "Lady! Cuff the other shithead!" the Lieutenant reaches behind her and gets the handcuffs around Sholty's wrists as she lifts for a radio. "Cerberus, Cerberus, this is Dog Actual on Elpis! We've had a mob assault and need medical evac for two- possibly three adults!" She shoves Sholty away from the unidentified man and kneels beside Magnus to try and treat him. First Aid like whoa. "The victim has neck and head injuries. Advise on arrival time, over!"

Hurdle the chair. Around the table. Make for the stairwell. But then the mook is off into the stairwell and lost in the crowd, the cop just a few steps behind. But those are the steps that make all the difference. "Damn it!" Kincaid slams his hand hard against the frame of the door, gasping for breath. Bad guy got away.

Lance Corporal Lady, mildly put out that Sholty's not on the ground yet, growls as she crosses her chest with her cane in both hands, then shoulders up all into the posessed man's business, at once shoving him back from his position over the fallen man he'd been pursuing and getting into position to ram it up into his ribs with a motion like paddling an oar backward. That one produces a -most- satisfying crack, and leaves her smiling almost sadistically over the man as he goes down. It bubbles up from the depths of her being like a wad of saliva onto a dead man's grave: "Betch." And, that final epithet laid upon the laid-out Sholty, she's getting her handy zip-ties to truss up the other loser, as her LT bids her.

Trying to find a way to get to where the cameraman was quick enough, Samuel lets out a few choice words as he can't seem to find a quick enough way there. Instead he comes to a stop, looking between the others, looking to see where he can be of use now.

Now, without his windpipe receiving so much punishment, Magnus slowly regains consciousness but at this point, he is in no position to talk or do…anything. He slowly opens his eyes only to see a blurry figure in front of him, Vandenberg in this case. Blood continues to pour from every wound and his face looks pretty…pretty bad actually. The man opens his mouth to say something but no words come from it, instead, he just coughs again and this time, he coughs up a lot of blood that washes down to his neck and the metal floor.

Rose prairie-dogs up from behind the tumbled furniture she was hiding behind, once the commotion dies down. "Is… is anyone hurt? I know first aid," She asks meekly, possibly lost in the shuffle and the post-fight excitement. She stacks her haphazard papers and folders and tucks them away someplace where she can retrieve them later, and picks herself up off the floor, smoothing out her sweater.

Sholty's still conscious, but only barely. His body is busted and bruised where he's been hit, and his knuckles and elbows are an absolute mess. Then again, the Marines just saw exactly what he did to the other guy, so it's not like the honor of the CMC has been impinged — if you take out the part where he assaulted a defenseless civilian.

The sergeant, for her part, has whipped out her cuffs as well, but not before one of her lance coolies sends his boot a-thumping into the dark-haired man's side. "Sorry," he says, looking not in the least sorry as her glare skewers him to the wall. "Frakker was resisting arrest."

"Bullshit," snaps the sergeant. "Tomlinson, by Persephone's frozen tits, if you and Donut didn't get — and Corporal Derrick — " Who now appears empty-handed over the side of the railing on the second floor, Private Leon in tow, holding up a camera stand but no camera and no suspect, their faces grim. And at that the sergeant slams her cuffed prisoner against the deck, assured that nobody's watching.

What is it that they say about the news? "If it bleeds, it leads?" Now, proud men and women of the Colonial Marine Corps, would be a good time to wager a voucher or two at Pete's, given that you know exactly how the next manifesto is going to read.

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