PHD #043: It Changes Nothing (Other Than Everything)
It Changes Nothing (Other Than Everything)
Summary: With Trask not actually dead, dysfunction lives on.
Date: 10 Apr 2041 AE
Related Logs: The Ostent Evanescent & Gone and There Again
Evandreus Quinn Trask 
Hangar Deck — Port — Midship — Battlestar Cerberus
Post Holocaust Day: #43
The single largest rooms on the Cerberus are the hangar decks. Each flight pod consists of two stacked landing bays with adjoined decks and hangars, which along with computer-assisted landings results in a faster Viper recovery rate. Mirror images of each other, these two huge areas are located on the flight pods. The inboard sides of the deck, closest to the ship's main hull, are lined with parking and maintenance bays for Vipers and Raptors based aboard the battlestar. The outboard side of the deck contains the launch tubes used by the Vipers for standard deployment. Huge blast doors seal the deck into four sections, each one containing an elevator that leads up to the flight deck directly overhead. The fore-most section contains an elevator system that leads towards Aerospace Fabrication.
Condition Level: 2 — Danger Close

Quinn knows a ship is coming back. They said they think the team is aboard. Somehow, they survived. They made it. Fate, chance, insanity, they're still here. The moment she heard, the boys in CIC taking pity on the heartbroken, ice cold Raptor SL, who spent a good 20 minutes crying when she heard about Trask and then the rest of the hour and a half simply shut down. Ice cold. They told her and she ran. Now she stands there, on deck, in her duty blues… waiting. Too numb to hope.

Leave it to Trask to be nonchalant about even this. When he and the others disembark from the Raptor sent to fetch the team from the Eidolon, he's dressed only in his boots, tags, and the tank and sweats that are supposed to be worn underneath the flight suit. Said suit is nowhere to be seen. He is, however, carrying his helmet upside-down. Inside that helmet, there is a kitten that has been drawing Lunair like a magnet. At least until the Marine is ushered to Medical. In fact, the ECO and his pilot, Temperance, are the only ones not being sent that way. (For the record, said Ensign is wearing a flight suit that isn't one of the Cerberus'.) With a small but genuine smile, he peers into the headgear and murmurs something, then wiggles his fingers inside. Not yet seeing Quinn, the man then carefully hands the helmet and its fluffy passenger to one of the medics, with whom he exchanges some words.

Quinn wasn't going to cry again; she told herself she wouldn't. Dammit, they were in the military. This stuff happened. It might happen again, for real. But she watches him and the tears are just there, her throat tight with relief and sick sweetness… he's alive. She doesn't rush over to him, no matter how much she might want to. He's busy, he's probably got a debriefing… but she's standing there, just to the side of the walkway, waiting. A few tears do finally cut free down her cheeks.

As the others depart to Medical, Kal's gaze lingers on his helmet until it's obscured by its new bearer. Half-stretching, his head lolls to the right and then the left, capped off with the hand from the latter side sweeping through his damp, dark hair. Idly, he then rubs at the back of his neck. It's then that an officer from CIC approaches him about the debriefing, taking him aside to a quieter part of the deck. In due course, the procedure runs its course, leaving Trask standing there and free to go. "Hey, Torres!" he calls out over the din to a Specialist he knows, "Spare me a smoke? Mine were eaten by sulphuric acid."

Quinn is clearly not going to be noticed. But then, why would she be? Just his partner for two years now, practically family, and just thinking he was dead… why would he take mind of her at all? She finally steps forward, a touch of anger in her eyes, making the relief and the tears not quite so mushy as they were otherwise. "…Hey…" she breathes out. She doesn't even have words.

In Trask's defense, it played out in his universe as such: Kitten > Debriefing > Hitting-Up The First Acquaintance He Saw For Nicotine. When Quinn steps forward and speaks up, she most certainly is noticed. "Make it two," he tells Torres, eyes not leaving the advancing redhead. "Miss me, angel cake?" he smiles in that way of his that can be both insouciant yet endearing. Not oblivious to the woman's tears, his brown eyes don't speak at all glibly, which is probably why he's so eager to carry on as though he was never presumed dead. "Thanks, man," is said to the Specialist before one of the cancer sticks is offered to the Captain. "You have a light on you, I hope." Not that they can smoke in here, but he's not so callous to start moving. Or perhaps it's a certain awkwardness that keeps him there.

Quinn swears softly, shaking her head. "You're so frustrating I could… frak…" And then, hopefully he moves his cigarette fast enough it doesn't get crushed, she seizes forward and wraps her arms so tightly around him that she might very well suck the air straight from his lungs. She holds on tight, a few more tears spilling down her cheeks. "…Frak… gods… I thought you were dead…"

"Oof!" Yeah, he actually makes that sound as he's hugglerushed. Trask's arms do manage to move out of the way in time, thus saving the smokes, albeit barely. More importantly, said arms find their place around Quinn and hold her in a manner that is affectionate, protective, and comforting. Granted, this is completely at odds with what comes out of his mouth. "You wanna frak me even when I'm not being frustrating." Beat. "Whenever the hell that might be." That he isn't being frustrating. Which is to say half-past never. Still not letting go, he quips, "Thanatos must be sleeping off a hangover." Tightly, he snugs her. "Oh, by the way, O'Sullivan is henceforth known as Knickers. Happy early birthday."

Quinn keeps her arms tight around him, a few more tears on her cheeks no matter how she'd like to stop them and be the cold, careless bitch of an SL the military trains you to be. She simply can't do it right now. She cares too damn much. She swallows in tightly, still rubbing his back for a heartbeat or two before she forces herself to pull back and gazes up to his eyes. "Don't you ever… ever… do that to me again. You hear that? That's a frakking order. Never again…" She looks a mess. A passionate, loving, too emotional mess. A weak smile crosses her lips. "Knickers? What'd she do to get that?"

"It's difficult to demote me if I'm dead," he cheekily smiles. It's also not proper protocol for him to be placing a fond kiss on the top of his Squad Leader's head, but that's what Kal does. Maybe it's wrong, but she's his best friend before his commanding officer, especially in a moment like this. When Quinn pulls back, he gives a final squeeze and then lets her go, now offering one of the cigarettes. To answer the question, "It's more like what she didn't do."

Quinn accepts the cigarette now, a wee bit more pulled together. She slips it between her lips and does pull out a lighter from her pocket, but begins leading the way off deck first before she hands the flame to him. She knows regs, and she'll most certainly follow those ones. "Didn't? Oh my. How much did you see?"

Like a good ex-knuckledragger, Trask doesn't strike the light until the deck is fully cleared. Once it is, he tends to Quinn's cigarette before handling his own. "More than I'm sure she'd like," he replies, the words a bit muffled with the smoke betwixt his lips. "So, tell me," he puffs, "is it an Aerilonian thing to not wear pants underneath a flight suit?" Even he isn't walking around in his skivvies.

Quinn wrinkles her nose at that thought, shaking her head almost immediately. "Oh, gods no… That would… chafe, wouldn't it?" Maggie asks with a bit of a wince. Granted, she's normally just in shorts and tanks, but it's still SOMETHING, at least. "…why in the world were you all out of your flight suits? Don't you know how frakking dangerous that is?" she grumbles protectively, but isn't really lecturing. She's certain they have a good reason.

"It does." Beat. "Maybe less with girly bits. I really don't know, not having girly bits." All which suggests he might well know about the chafing via personal experience. As casually as if he were discussing what he ate for breakfast, Trask tells her, "Acid, and not the kind associated with raves and glowsticks."

Quinn twitches a touch at that thought, dragging off of her cigarette again as they walk back towards the bunks. The logical place in her mind. "You should shower… you probably got free of it, but just in case… safer that way," she murmurs protectively, looking him up and down to just be certain he might not be ignoring any injuries.

Naturally, he can't let that comment slide. "You wanna scrub me to make sure I don't miss a spot?" Brown eyes impishly cast a sidelong glance. If he's injured, Trask's not at all showing it. "Knickers and I are fine. The others, though? They actually had to /breathe/ that shit." Which is why they were all sent to medical. "I honestly have no frakkin' idea how the kitten survived."

Quinn rolls her eyes, shaking her head to him. "No, no. I think I will be fine just knowing that you know how to wash all by yourself like a -big- boy. At least you've been out of diapers a few years, right?" She winks to him as they duck through the hatch of the raptor berthings. She's trying to keep it light, like nothing happened, even if she's walking just a bit too close. "…Kitten?"

"Y'know," he exhales with some smoke, "I wash and I wash and I wash, but I somehow remain dirty. Go figure." Onward to the berthing. "Yeah. Poor thing was half-starved to death." Trask actually isn't blithe or glib in relaying that. The truth is that seeing the poor animal in such a state resonated with his own childhood of too many hungry days and nights. Not that he's bound to admit it. "A cute calico. Named 'er nibbles." Most calicos are female and it's not like anyone bothered to check the animal's gender. The poor fella is already traumatized. Being mistaken for a girl is the least of the fluffball's worries. "Medical's givin' her a check-up. Then she's goin' to the Admiral." It's not quite a frown that forms. Perhaps it more like a second-cousin.

Quinn frowns a bit again, looking him over. "But… didn't you find the cat? Why does the Admiral get to keep her? Are you getting visiting rights, at least?" Maggie seems dead serious about that, especially having seen just how attached he seemed to have become to the thing.

Like with most things that might be even remotely upsetting, Kal brushes it off. "Technically, El-Tee Jay-Gee Lunair found 'er. Since the JiG needed to, y'know, do her job," cue the snark, "I became the chauffeur. Then Knickers kitty-sat when El-Tee Jay-Gee Parres and I needed to be awesome and get the FTL unlinked from the DRADIS." As for why the Admiral gets to keep the cat, "He's the Admiral?" It's not really a question; his tone simply adopts that ribbing tone. When it comes to the whole visitation thing, one shoulder arches into a half-hearted shrug. "Dunno. I guess if I asked, the Admiral might say yes." There's a vague flippancy in his voice when he says that. It fades when he adds, "As long as the critter gets tended to, I'm happy. Anyway, what could be better for her than bunking with the big brass? She'll be a pudgy puddy tat in no time." And that's what matters most.

Quinn gives a half smile, "Yes, I suppose… but I'm still going to get visitation rights for you. That feline might be the first thing you've ever loved, you cold hearted bastard." She's teasing, mostly, her voice light and warm. She then heads for her bunk, rather completely exhausted. Emotions are miserable and wearing. "Well… you get a shower, debrief, and some rest… I'm skipping straight to step three, I think."

"I must say that I do love a nice bit of pussy." Quinn must've known that one was coming. Finishing the last of his cigarette, Trask then grinds the butt into one of the communal ashtrays. That done, it's to his locker to grab bath products. "Sweet dreams, sweet cakes. And should you happen to see Nibbles in you bed, be sure to cover your face." Without elaborating, he's off.

Some time later…

The 'lost' Raptor team having been escorted home, debriefed, and let to decompress, the news begins to spread around the ship of the exaggerated nature of the deaths of those listed KIA in the earlier memo to that effect. And, like a moth drawn in woozy-looking circles, fluttering toward the flame, Evan's drawn back to berthing after a long sojourn somewhere out of the way. Eyes red, eyelids swollen and cheeks sticky with dried tears, the Raptorbunny lifts a hand to the side of the hatch, standing there in the open doorway. "Kal?" he utters, feebly. He never uses the ECO's first name. Like, ever. But now, somehow, cute nicknames won't seem to do.

If the distinctive Kirituhi-style tataus weren't distinguishing enough, Bootstrap's behind, even in profile, should readily identify him. Standing next to the stack of bunks he shares with Quinn, the ECO idly — and most nakedly — is toweling off, having just taken a much needed shower. Since aforementioned set of bunks isn't right next to the door, and because Evandreus' voice doesn't much carry in such a wan condition, the pilot isn't yet noticed.

Evandreus can't help it. The tears start coming again, even if there's no sobbing accompanying them, this time. Just tear after tear in swift-lapsing succession down cheeks already numb with wet and cold. His toes trip against the hatchway on his way in, and he stumbles a little, but doesn't fall, the world going blurry behind a wall of water, then clear again, then promptly blurry once more.

Meanwhile, oblivious ECO is oblivious. Still occupied with getting dry, he's not looking towards the hatch. Not even when he hears the sound of someone quasi-stumbling into the berthing. Instead, it's unthinkingly interpreted as the result inebriation. Being no lover of alcohol, in addition to always being snarky about people being sloshed, he sardonically calls out, "Hey, Drinky McDrunkard, try not to puke. I'm sure you smell bad enough, as is. Much obliged. Thanks."

"Kal," comes the voice, a little bit stronger, once Bunny reaches his own locker, about a bunk's length from Trask's own. Any other day he'd just ambush the guy with a hug, clothes on or no. But today's different. As though coming too close might cause him to disappear again. "Gods," is the only thing else he can quite say for the moment. "Are you really here?"

This time, the pilot is heard. Damp head turning, Trask's expressive brown eyes alight on the younger man. "Damn, Bunny. You look like you've seen a ghost." Facetious as ever. "Yeah, I'm here. You're just in time for the drying off of my nads, for the report of my demise has been grossly exaggerated." Just like him to be appropriately inappropriate. Even so, irreverence isn't obliviousness; it's obvious that his friend is in poor shape. He simply has never been good at dealing with emotional issues other than with a certain flippancy. All the same, an effort is made. "Jesse's gonna be fine. Feeling kinda shitty for a few days, but otherwise fine." Never mind that what he says is as much to deflect from himself as it is to uplift Evan.

The ice thus broken, Evan only hangs there a moment longer before he steps swiftly to and reaches out to take Trask in a hug, moist testicles or no, back hunched a little, shoulders shuddering forward a few times as Bunny finds a spot on Boots' shoulder he evidently thinks got missed by the shower. And the snot dispenser, to boot — his nose beginning to run like someone was chasing it.

Like the rest of Evan's touchy-feeliness, this is taken in stride. For the nonce, the usual ambivalence that is sparked by said touchy-feeliness is brushed aside, and Kal wraps his arms around his distraught Doe. Nothing is immediately said, but the stance is one that seeks to comfort and offer assurance. It's protective, strong yet silent, and a role he easily slips into, as though it were hardwired. Bearing some resemblance to how he held his mother or his sister after one of his father's rampages, it is done as a matter of reflex.

Air shoves itself from Evan's lungs in three sharp gusts, each just barely vocalized, and in the aftermath of the sobbing he gasps the air in again, and swallows, just burying his face into Trask's neck. "I shouldn't have cried," comes warbling through the tears. "So many people are gone, and just… just a couple more… it shouldn't matter. But I couldn't stand it, Kal. I just couldn't stand it. I'm so sorry. I'm so sorry," he sobs nonsensically onto his friend, tears having evidently pickled his brains. He does not, however, seem to have been drinking. At least, if he has, not enough to smell of it even at these close quarters.

Who knew that there was so much tenderness underneath a somewhat abrasive exterior? One arm squeezes a bit tighter, while the hand of the other seeks to soothingly rub Bunny's back. "It's a'right," he quietly says in a warm, wry tone, "Snot away." Yes, he's purposely twisting what Evan really is getting at. That is, after all, his way. "I kinda felt like another shower." Really, he doesn't care that his shoulder is coated in mucous and tears. "Lemme know if you want a tissue… or my towel."

With the encouragement from Trask, Evan lets go of any sense of restraint he might have been clinging to. Or maybe it's just the sensation of the hand on his back, feeling the warm embrace of the very person he'd thought he'd lost forever, but he just totally loses it, breath coming ragged and choppy, eyelids heated to a numbness by the tears overflowing them past any reasonable limit of tears, diaphragm twitching in a hiccup from time to time as his body tries to correct his breathing.

There, there, Bunny. Let it all out. Bootstrap will just stand there, stoically supportive. "I'm not goin' anywhere," he murmurs. "You an' Cinnabun are stuck with me, Bun-bun." Offering another comforting, brotherly squeeze, Kal continues as caretaker. "C'mon. You look like you're about to collapse. Not to mention in need of cuddles." Which is probably why he contorts a bit to maneuver one leg into a position where his toes can grab the curtain to Quinn's bunk and start tugging it open. "Jugs, move your buns." Guess who's hosting an impromptu sleepover.

Quinn blinks, having been asleep… and asleep on the shit the doctor has given her since those weeks ago that she was relieved of duty for exhaustion and NOT sleeping. So it's not a sleep that is easily roused. But she's military trained, and while drugs are strong, adrenaline is stronger. She hears her name, some light flashing through the pulled curtains of her bunk. Fortunately, her now-regular visitor ISN'T in tonight, or this could have been awkward. She groans, rolling onto her side. "…erm… wha..?"

Evandreus does look approximately like the ass-end of hell, face red and slick with tears, but the squeeze about his person seems to be calming him, lulling him down from the terrorized high that had been making his limbs all tremor with an anguished energy running roughshod through his weary frame, down, down to where Hypnos can catch him. His own arms loop around down about the small of Trask's back, holding him close, but looser as the curtain's parted for him. "Come stay tonight?" he asks, voice small. He doesn't want Trask to be away again. Even if it means three-in-a-bunking.

"Yeah," Trask softly assents, before adding, "I probably should cover my damp dangly bits, as I'm sure Maggie's not quite /that/ happy that I'm not dead." See that? Consideration for the half-drugged, distraught redhead. Were she not in a quasi-stupor, he'd probably just climb in, damp dangly bits and all, because it is in his nature to make her both love and loathe him. "Hop on in, Bunny-boy."

Quinn blinks quietly, still half asleep and fortunately drowsy eyed enough that she hasn't gotten a TOTAL eyeful of her ECO's dangly bits. She does see the redness of Evan's face, though, the strange gentleness in Trask's voice, and even her drug addled mind can get the fact that he needs Help. With a capital H. She forces herself to half awake, drowsily pulling herself into sitting as she makes room and bedding free in her bunk for the boys. It'll be tight, but they can manage. "Mm… yeah… come on, Evan… if I'm gonna be your mum we gotta make up for all those years we missed of you crawlin' into my bed in the middle of the night… Come on in… we'll make room…" she huskily murmurs.

Evandreus has got the full-on grief hiccups by now, ribs shaking against Trask's and arms stiff and pulled as he draws away and sinks into Quinn's bunk, drawing up all shivery and hiccuppy next to his mum as his jawline drips with wet, and he squirms along toward the bulkhead to make sure there's room for a third. It's not his first three-in-a-bunk. Of course, they were all about as sexually charged as this one is. Which is to say, not at all.

Mum? Being ignorant about what Quinn actually means by that doesn't prevent Trask from quipping, "You're not /that/ old, honey muffin." To be Evan's mom. Once it's two in the bed, he finishes drying off, including wiping off Bunny boogers. That done, the towel is tossed in the dirty bin and a pair of fresh boxer briefs wriggled into. Then it's into that bottom bunk he goes, even if only until the curly-haired moppet is sound asleep. "It's my knee," is told to Maggie as he settles in.

Quinn shifts, rolling up onto her side so the quietly sobbing, soon to sleep Evan is between them and she's looking over Evan's shoulders in Trask's direction. Of course, now that she's awake and worried about Evan, her mind isn't wanting to shut off to go back to sleep. So she kisses at his hair as he drifts off and smirks towards Trask. "I know that's your knee… The gods weren't NEARLY that kind to you…" she whispers softly, smirking in drowsy amusement.

"Careful, Mags. I find derision a turn-on, and we can't afford to have your eye poked out," Trask chides, trying to get settled in a way where he won't fall out of the bed. Eventually, he maneuvers into place.

Quinn has gathered Evan as close to her as humanly possible, so the younger man is half buried in her chest. She then stretches her arm over his waist and allows her fingertips to rest on Trask's waist, half in affection, half to help keep him in the small bed. "…I always dreamt I'd be doing this with the love of my life… not the annoyance of it." She smiles to him, affection in her voice despite the words.

"Hey, just because Bunny can't hear you doesn't mean you should be raggin' on the poor boy. Besides, all his touchy-feely foo is more disconcerting than annoying." No, that is not what Quinn meant. Yes, Trask is fully aware of that. Which is why he goes on to add, "Here's hopin' that the love of your life ends up being a smokin' hot chick. I don't even have to participate. I can just lay here and watch."

Quinn rolls her eyes to him, though she does peek out the curtain one moment. No Tillman. He wasn't going to come tonight, right? There wouldn't be room in the bunk either way. She settles back down against both of them. "No, no… no women for me, thank you very much. Right here is plenty enough, especially with the adoption paper work actually going through…"

If Tillman does plan on showing up, it'll be difficult to spot him in advance, what with how Kal draws the curtain shut to kill the lights. "Bunny's not /that/ girly." As far as the adoption comment goes, he points out, "I know you're pretty prudish and all, thus somewhat naive, but a sugar daddy isn't actually a daddy in any legal sense." Gods only know what he might say if he knew what she was talking about.

Quinn grows a bit serious, looking down at Evan's messy, curly hair for a moment and pressing a brief kiss there before she gazes back up to Trask. "Kal… I'm serious. Evan asked me a few weeks ago. We've spoken to the JAG… the paper work is going to go through. I'm going to adopt him… " She smiles a bit more, proud, protective, still a bit shocked but warmed by the whole situation. "If we're all the family we've got left… we might as well be it. Evan never had much of anything… he wanted it. I said yes."

Quinn can't be serious. She's not even 12 years older than Evan. Surely, she's joking. Yet there's a niggling feeling that Trask can't shake. Even though it's dark in the bunk and he's facing the curtain, it's the kind of silence that speaks volumes. When he finally speaks, it's with the carefully modulated tone of someone trying to downplay the situation. "The CAG's actually okay with that? Y'know, with how such a thing might affect the rest of the squad." It's a valid concern, even if that's not the entirety of it.

Maggie lets those few heartbeats of space between them linger on a bit longer. She's a hint surprised, having expected Evan to have told Trask already. She didn't quite think she'd break the news this way. But, with all of them curled up in bed together, now seems as good a time as any. "…She's not great with it, but… not horrible. There's precedent. Apparently, a father son team flew together in the first war. Made some big headlines… we keep personal off-duty and business to business and… that will be it."

"Yeah, but…" he starts somewhat tentatively, "they were already related. You're… you're talking about adopting a 26 year old man. It's not the same thing. You're entirely changing the dynamic among a group of people." Presumably the Harriers and possibly all of Air Wing. "Dramatically so." In truth, Trask's disquiet has little to do with anyone other than himself, Evan, and Quinn.

Quinn blinks a moment, definitely a touch shocked now. "…What? Gods, Kal… I already think of him as a son… the closest thing I'll probably ever have, at my age. It changes… nothing. It's just making things official… just like you're the closest thing to a brother I have these days. I care that much. I love you. Frak. I love both of you. What is so bad about a piece of paper that says that? It changes nothing… "

"You honestly think that those you command are gonna feel that way?" There's a hint of derision that tangos with exasperation. "You honestly believe that the others are gonna feel the same way about it? For frak's sake, Maggie, he's not a child. He's frakkin' grown. Even if you Aerilonians may start poppin' babies out at 12, it doesn't make it any less messed-up." Kal must be upset if he's reminding her where she's actually from. Really, though, it comes out without any conscious thought. "And if it doesn't change anything, why do it? Why make the rest of the squad go 'what the frak?' and cause internecine strife?" Yes, he said internecine strife. Even so, his voice hasn't raised much, perhaps not wanting to rouse Evan. With his tone, he needn't be loud to get his points across.

Quinn frowns about as deep as she ever frowns, definitely not happy. She gently begins to prop herself up onto her elbow so she can look over Evan's sleeping body in Trask's direction even if he isn't really facing her. "So far, everyone I've spoken to about it seems actually quite happy for us. Nice to see a bit of light in the misery of this whole frakked up pile of shit we've gotten ourselves into. You seem to be the one making a deal out of this when it's nothing but us trying to find a bit more belonging, a bit more family… when we've all lost everything. It's not like I'm going to start playing favourites. Do you really think I'm that frakking unprofessional?"

"Start?" That one word is so loaded, as if to say she's been playing favorites all along. Kal's mouth forms a severe line, frustrated, even though it can't be glimpsed. Then, he sighs. "Maggie, I love you to bits. I honestly, truly do. You're the best damn friend I've ever had. And I love Evan, too. But come on, we all know that Bunny and I can pretty much crawl into bed with you and have, in fact, done so on numerous occasions. Name one other person, other than your would-be boyfriend, who can do so." Always so blunt when calling a spade a spade, but people tend to put up with his calling out of others' bullshit because he'll readily cop to his own.

Quinn stares coldly at him, even if he's not looking at her, he might be able to feel her eyes drilling into the back of his skull. She really, really hopes Evan is as asleep as he seems, or this is going to be even more awkward. "Honestly, Kal? Every single one of them, if they needed it or wanted to. I'm the den mother. I always have and I always will be. How the frak do you think us three got this close? It wasn't playing favourites then, it was leaving my door open and you both came. And the same goes for everyone in this frakking squadron. So don't tell me I'm not doing my job right because I care about ALL of you… Frak…"

Whether or not he senses the glare, it doesn't keep Kal from snarking, "You gonna adopt them, too?"

Quinn groans a bit and collapses back down to her pillow. "No. Because they probably all had perfectly lovely mothers and they want to keep that memory. But Evan didn't. He wants this… and I care about him, so I said yes. I love him, and the permissions are through. You would think you could just be happy for your friends." She grumbles, quieter than before.

At that, Trask rolls his eyes. Even unseen, Quinn might sense such. "Maybe some of us have daddy issues." Okay, the eyerolling is veritably audible in his voice. Then there's a heavy silence, for his facetiousness has left him feeling suddenly exposed, even if he'll never cop to it. After a pensive moment, he ambivalently concedes, "If it's what you both want, then I'm happy for you. I still think it's frakked up but whatever. My opinion doesn't matter." That last is said without resentment. Having said his piece, the Taurian concludes with, "He's good an' conked out. I'll give you guys some more room." Bunny is known to shift a lot when he sleeps.

Quinn isn't certain what to say. She had been feeling so much better. Sad, yes, destroyed over the killings, but better, like the future might be coming together. Now his anger and hurt has put a hole in it all. She lingers wrapped around Bunny, her gut twisted, breathing a bit shallow. Finally, all she whispers is a quiet, "I'm sorry, Kal… Good…good night…"

"For what?" He's already brushing it off and carefully maneuvering out of the bed, so as to not wake Evan. "If you've both found some measure of happiness in a world mauled by Erebus, hold on to it. To Stygia with anyone trying to take that from you." This the ECO genuinely means. Then again, he's of a make to tell pretty much the whole cosmos to frak off. Blithely, no less. "I'm happy you're happy," even if he's somewhat pensive. "Despite what you may think, I'm not such a colossal jerkass to want the people I care about to be miserable." Drawing back the curtain as quietly as possible — and only as far as is necessary, thus limiting the light that enters — Trask eases out of the bunk. "I'll see you in what passes for morning. Rest well, Cinnabun. You, too, hunny Bunny."

That said, the 5th Wheel rolls off to his own bed.

Quinn isn't certain what more to say. His words hurt, she's not clear what he meant or didn't… so she says nothing at all. She just tucks down with the man that is to be her son, hugging him a bit closer as the curtains are shut and she lays away, the thoughts of going back to sleep completely gone.

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