PHD #381: Living in Fear is Stupid
Living in Fear is Stupid
Summary: Well, it is. So saieth Cidra and Devlin.
Date: 14 March 2042 AE
Related Logs: Swarms, Skinjobs
Cidra Devlin 
Laundry Room
Clothes clothes everywhere and not a thing to wear.
Post-Holocaust Day: #381

Cidra has rarely been seen out of her flight suit in the past weeks, as the Swarm bombarded the Fleet on a near-daily basis. Not today, however. She's in an off-duty tank, Athena tattoos on display as she sits in one of the chairs, flipping through an old magazine as a machine runs through a cycle with her laundry. The magazine is a decorating digest, of all things. Perhaps she borrowed it from the library. There are only so many one hasn't read in the last year, after all, and one has to scavenge to find new material.

Devlin carries his flightsuit with him at all times, and that includes now, the string-strapped gym bag slung over one shoulder, the large mesh laundry bag over the other. He heads in and sets it in front of the machines, opening two washers and beginning to divide the lights and darks between them. It's mostly all military-issue, of course, but there are a few spots of color and pattern here and there, from dark plaids that are probably his to bright pinks that are probably not. He hums absently to himself, and then seems to catch the CAG out the corner of his eye sort of suddenly and stop humming, turning to say, "Oh, hey, Toast. I didn't see you there."

"Decoy." Cidra returns the greeting without immediately looking up from her magazine. "Did you know hardwood floors are coming back into fashion this year? We should perhaps request Colonel Pewter redocorate the ship. We would not want to get behind the times." A joke, presumably, albeit delivered in with no inflection in her voice.

Devlin blinks and then spots the magazine title and then nods at the major, "Should probably get on that," he agrees, "I hear the Praetorian's redone all their heads in marble, and the Corsair's ordered new curtains. Don't want to be the odd ones out over here." He continues with his sorting, most of it easy and mindless, until suddenly he pauses. He waffles between the two machines for a moment and then finally turns to Cidra and asks, "Purple? Should that be light, or dark?"

Cidra looks up from her magazine, at Devlin, eyes narrowing in an attempt to spot his purple item. "It is a color." That established she adds, "It strikes me as a dark one. I am not entirely certain. I do not own anything in purple. I have few civilian clothes, really, apart from some choice old items I rarely wear."

Devlin listens for Cidra's opinion, nodding along, "I haven't got any purple either. It's usually dark, I figure, but this one's sort of lighter…" he finally just holds up the item, which is indeed sort of a light-medium purple, right in that confusing range of colors not obviously meant for either load of washing. It's also pretty clearly women's underwear, though he's got it sort of scrunched and wrinkled in an attempt to not make that super-obvious. "I dunno," he admits, and then shrugs, "I guess dark is safer. I have a lot of civilian clothes," he admits, "I've given some away, but… I dunno, it's nice having them. And even getting to wear them once in a while back before the swarms started."

"That is an undergarment," Cidra informs Devlin, as if he may be unaware of this fact. "It should be washed with your delicate items, whatever you do with it. I would venture it is a dark, yes." She nods shortly, as if that decides the issue. "The Swarms. Gods. Three days absent them and it feels as if I am just beginning to wake from a haze. I pray they stay absent." Not that she sounds like she's counting on it, precisely, but she prays nonetheless.

"Yeah, it is," Devlin admits, flushing faintly, and clarifying needlessly, "We share laundry. Alternate weeks. Dark, okay." He smiles then, "Thanks. I knew you'd know." Why exactly he was sure she would know, who knows. The Swarms draw a string of nods, chin bouncing as he empties the bag and checks the machine settings before getting them running. He leans back and agrees, "I still keep waking up thinking I'm missing alarms," he says, "Hopefully they won't come back. But I'm not sure why they wouldn't," he admits, a little sadly, "I mean, even if those foundries were where they're coming from and now they can't make more, there's still all the ones already out there."

"Yes, it is," Cidra echoes Devlin as to the use of his purple item. Does she sound, ever-so-slightly, amused? Perhaps. "My yeoman keeps attempting to do my laundry for me. I have told her quite firmly to stop attempting that." From her tone, being Cidra's yeoman may not be the most pleasant assignment aboard ship. "When one has a moment, it can be relaxing. It gives one an excuse to just sit and think." A small nod, as to the foundries. "If we disrupt production enough, perhaps the enemy shall find it…unproductive to continue to throw Raiders at us in these suicidal runs. But you are correct in that they have little other reason to stop. For my part, I will take whatever respite I can get while I can get it."

"You could give your yeoman our laundry," Devlin suggests jokingly, "I mean hey, if she wants some to do that bad, I'm happy to stop. It is nice in here," he admits, "I don't usually stay, I usually just put it in and then go work out or something, but sometimes I hang out. It's warm," he says, "And I kinda like the noise. And it smells like clean laundry, and that's nice. When it's quiet like this and not crowded, it's a good place to hang out." He takes a seat on one of the out-of-use machines and nods in rapid agreement at Cidra's last, "Definitely. Even if it's just a few days, it's something. Time to regroup and rest a little and get the planes fixed up."

Cidra looks and Devlin mildly when he suggets pawning his own laundry off on her yeoman. "Heh," she says simply. Probably not. "And yes. I like it as a place to…hang out." As always, near-slang sounds very strange coming from her. As if she is unsure she's using it correctly. "How is Bubbles faring these days? I am most glad she has returned to the flight line. She was sorely missed."

Devlin doesn't look disappointed at the failure of his plan, since it was clearly just a joke, anyway. "Oh well," he replies with a smile and a shrug and then a nod, "Yeah, I always kind of want to nap when I'm here," he says, "It seems like a good place for sleeping, somehow." He scrubs a hand through his hair and then nods along at the question about his wife, replying, "She's doing well, mostly all healed up 'cept for the scars and the hair. Hasn't been injured again since she got back, so that's been nice. A nice change."

"Thank all gods for that," Cidra says with a deep nod to Devlin. She flips a page in her decorating magazine. Not that she's reading it anymore. The one she opens to contains a spread of pictures on the finest in Caprican counter-top stylings. "Do tell her she looks fetching enough with short hair. I have been considering cutting my own, but I am undecided on the matter." She does not ask his opinion. Instead she regards him a moment, blue eyes taking on that weighing quality they occasionally take on. She says nothing else immediately. She just looks at him.

"I thank them daily," Devlin confirms, momentarily serious, "More than a few times." He glances at the magazine as she flips pages and then smiles, head bobbing as he nods, "I'll tell her, thanks. She'll like that. I think she hates what they did to her hair even more than the actual injuries, sometimes." He tugs and pushes at his own again, absently, and then tilts his head a little, not-so-discreetly considering Cidra and her hair. After a beat or two he notices that she is looking at him, and he straightens up guiltily. Lips part, and then shut again, and he just looks back.

Cidra tilts her head a little, continuing to look at Devlin for a long moment, before she asks him, "Do you regret it ever, Decoy?" She does not add what she's referring to.

Devlin's brows draw together as he rewinds their conversation in his mind to see if he somehow missed the object of that sentence. Failing to find it, he guesses. "Growing my hair?" is the mildly-teasing first reply, "Nah. Psyche likes it. Marrying her?" Guess #2, "Never. Joining up?" His last, the most serious of the three, and the one he lingers longest on answering, "Sometimes. But it was the right thing to do."

"More hair is more difficult to keep up," Cidra observes, as to the former. "Though it was the latter two points on which I was inquiring. "Bubbles is a strong pilot, she had not undergone serious injury prior to the Swarms. I hope you are more prepared for the possibility of..well. We all risk the oblivion each time we fly." As to the latter. "Yes. Well. It is a natural thing to regret. I long ago told you that you would."

"Yeah, it is," Devlin confirms of the hair, "It's taking some getting used to. I actually have to wash it. And dry it." Both of which are apparently foreign concepts to him. As for the real questions, his shoulders lift in a shrug. "We both know what could happen," he says, more seriously, "But we decided it's better not to think on it. Better to just enjoy each day we get and not get eaten up in wondering how many more there are and worrying when the last'll be. That's for the Gods to choose. Right now I've got a life I love and I'm going to live it, and deal with a change if it comes and not before." He scratches at his jaw and goes on, "I remember you did. I remember you offered me an out. It was kind of you. But if I was sitting over on that freighter knowing I could fly but not doing it?" He shakes his head, "I couldn't live with that. This is my fight as much as anyone else's."

Cidra simply nods to that. Accepting the answer in both parts. "We fight for the survival of all humanity now. I merely pray we find a path beyond these Swarms, and perhaps to something better."

"Yeah," Devlin replies. He nods a little, and then looks back across at Cidra. "I hope we find something else," he says, "I know it's not that likely, really, but… yeah," he shrugs some more, "I hope the Gods having something more planned for us than this. Just bouncing around barely surviving for the rest of ever. Starting over on a new planet wouldn't really be easier, exactly, but… it'd be more hopeful, at least."

"To my mind it is merely a matter of finding a destination," Cidra says. "But with the Cylons continuing to dog our steps, setting out without one is merely another death by small cuts. They have shown sharp ability to hunt us during these Swarms. Still, we must seek something. We cannot return to the Colonies. The only hope we have is something more out there."

"But how do we find a destination if we can't leave here to look for one?" Devlin asks, "And how do we keep them from following us if we ever do find one?" He shakes his head, "I mean… it just doesn't seem that likely," he says again, "I hope we find something, I'm not gonna stop praying for it, but right now it just kinda seems like we're stuck."

"That is the rub," Cidra agrees. Not grimly, exactly, but with a certain air of frustration in her tone. "The key matter now, to my mind, is to discover how they are hunting us so effectively. Space is big. Even if they were sending out thousands upon thousands of Raiders…to track us to a new position each day…? I suppose it is possible, but I have difficulty believing it."

"Spiral keeps saying there's skinjobs here on the ship," Devlin says, "I've heard other people say it too. That there are more still hiding, like Salt was. And they're telling the raiders where we are somehow." He rubs at the back of his neck and asks, "Do you think that's true?"

"I believe there are still skinjobs on this ship. And I believe they are agents of the enemy," Cidra answers, tone rather careful on the matter. "Whether it is them or some other force that is leading the Cylons to us, I will not claim to be wise enough to know. How they are managing it, I cannot fathom. But…I think it likely."

Devlin takes a moment to take that in, nodding a little, brows furrowed together as he does. "So… I mean… how do we find them?" he asks, "We have to find them before we can ever go anywhere else, then, right? Otherwise they'll always be here and they could figure out some way to contact the others, I mean… we could never risk it. People are working on that, right?"

"Intelligence and the Marines in Security are, I have no doubt, putting all efforts they can toward it," Cidra says. The answer is rather oblique, but she doesn't sound as if she lacks confidence. "You must recall, none knew Salt was a skinjob. Or that Morgenfield creature, despite the terror spread on the Deck and among our wing by her efforts. The enemy is clever, spies dressed in our very skin, with nothing to tell them apart from ourselves. It is a thing I fear far more than Raiders. Raiders you can spot on a DRADIS, and fight cleanly."

Devlin nods along and nods some more, agreeing, "Yeah, I'm sure they're doing all they can." His faith in Intel, Security, and Command seems genuine enough, as is his understanding as the major goes on. "Yeah," he agrees, "It's not a fun thought, that they could be anyone. I mean, you like to think we'd be able to tell, you know? That they'd just seem off or something, and we'd guess. But… who knows. I guess probably not. It sucks, I mean… I don't want to go around never trusting anybody."

"I refuse to be ruled by paranoia," Cidra says, standing up as her machine buzzes. Her load is done. She strides over to unload it from the dryer, stuffing it into her duffel bag. The CAG is not big on folding, apparently. "And caution and prudence do not mean suspecting each person one passes in the corridors of being a skinjob. There are spies among us, this I believe, and they shall be found and dealt with. Jumping at shadows serves this purpose not." Stuff, stuff, stuff. "In any case, I should be getting into my flight gear again after I drop these back at the berths. Good luck in your chores, Decoy."

"Yeah," Devlin agrees, "It's just not worth it. Living in fear is stupid, whatever it's fear of," he opines, before turning to glance at the machine as it buzzes. He watches Cidra unload absently, glancing aside at his machines, checking how much time they have left. He turns back to nod his agreement some more. "Thanks," he replies, "Thanks for your advice about the purple stuff," he adds with a bit of a smile, "See you around, Toast."

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