PHD #023: Logically Illogical
Logically Illogical
Summary: The flock tends the shepherd tends the flock.
Date: 2041.03.21
Related Logs: None.
Karthasi Tisiphone 

It's an off-hour; Greje's just finished tidying everything up after theoxeny, and the crowd's gone home, leaving her sitting over by the starboard wall on the lowest step, the silence in the room almost too much for her, every whirr and clank of the ship living around the room making her look up and aside nervously before, slouching over, she buries her face in her hands and rubs her eyes roughly with narrow fingers.

Enter Tisiphone from the corridor, her loose-laced boots announcing her arrival with dragging scuffs. She's looking a little better each day, the bruises continuing to fade from black to brown, the bandages off her brow, leaving only the curl of stitches against her eyesocket. She opens the hatch with the shoulder of her casted arm and moves forward, toward the altar, digging in her pocket as she does so.

Footsteps. Greje stiffens, despite herself. Arms drawing around her torso, she keeps her eyes focused on her knees, cheeks blanched pale with a fear to look up and see the figure clearing the vestibule. But she'll do it, anyhow. Any moment now. Peeking up with meek green eyes, just for a split second, then, again, for a longer moment. Hands move to either side of her.

The prayer-beads are drawn out with a series of dry, rustling clicks, the trailing tassel slapping limply against her leg. Tisiphone coils it absently around her wrist as she continues to move forward, not giving the familiar gesture a glance. The huddled form at the front of the chapel is given a moment of disinterested inspection — so many wounded souls, and so little empathy left to share around — until she realizes just who she's looking at. "Sister?" The last loop of bead is flicked around her wrist and anchored between pinky and ring finger to keep it from untwining as her steps speed up, toward the Chaplain. "Sister, you're- are you okay?"

Karthasi presses her palms against the step to either side of her, propping her spine back up into pristine upright posture. Knees together, feet together, back straight— hands fold on her lap, again, fingers in fingers. Hem. "I'm… well. Thank you, Tisiphone. How may I serve you?" she asks quietly, the line repeated so often it falls numbly off of the priest's tongue, at this point. But all the same, she asks. Her job here is to serve.

No-o-o, that's not well at all. And Tisiphone says so: "No, what's- Sister, what happened?" A touch of protectiveness bristles. This is supposed to be a safe place. /The/ Safe Place. She straightens, turning in a slow circle as sleet-blue eyes sweep a circuit around the room. "Did someone get angry at you? Someone- break something?" Poorly-directed anger and desecration of sacred space — these seem the most obvious answers, to her.

"No— no, n- nothing like that," Greje's ords sort of stumble over themselves in their haste to exit her mouth, her cheeks, from pale, trending a light pink at having upset Tisiphone. "No, it's— I— I don't know what it is," she finlly admits on a breath that tries to be laughter, but fails. "i fear I may be going quite mad, Tisiphone."

Tisiphone's fingers twitch against the prayer-beads, making them rattle. She sweeps another wary stare around after the chaplain's admission, frustrated at the lack of anything obviously amiss, before sinking down cautiously to the edge of a seat near Karthasi, turned toward her, knees close but not touching. It's what, for her, is a comfortable closeness. "What's happened?" she repeats. Eyes huge in her pale face, full of confused concern. "Why- what's gone wrong?"

Karthasi shakes her head, in that way that people do when things are being dragged out of them that they feel odd talking about, brows drawing, lips set upward in something of a grimace. "It's… probably just stress," she tries to mitigate the thing. "Please. You. Needn't worry. I—" che clears her throat, embarrassed. "I thought I saw someone here… who… wasn't really here."

Awkward. To press the point, or not. It's not where Tisiphone wants to be — pushed forward on coincidence's pikepoint into a personal, rather than professional, meeting with the chaplain. But she's the one who's here, right now. If you don't, girl, who will? "Who did you see, Sister?" she asks, curious and cautious. She couches it in present tense; it's how it was done for her, once upon a time. Old habits die hard.

Karthasi's eyes find the spot where the wall meets the floor close to her foot— her flock tending to her when it really ought to be the other way around— it's moderately unnerving, especially here. But her mind begins to drift to the apparition, again, replaying it in her mind, which at the very least, takes her mind off of the present circumstance, even if it makes the skin on her arms become trampled with a stampede of goosebumps. "I saw Robin," she finally lays it out there, dropping all occasions of 'I thought I saw,' 'I imagined,' 'I hallucinated.' She saw her.

A family member. A lover. Some avatar of grim portent. Tisiphone was bracing herself for something along those lines, but instead… There's a long, long pause — some of it not even marked by the sound of the Ensign's breath. Finally, slowly, from further away: "Robin Merrell?" If the chaplain looks up, Tisiphone is sitting back, ashen-faced, working on a crop of gooseflesh all her own.

"Robin Merrell," Greje repeats quietly, an exactness in each syllable. Then, turning her neck to peek toward the other one. "Exactly so," in mild tones of affirmation. "She seemed to me to be right here. And not just… out of the corner of my eye, in a crowd, from behind… here. We were alone." She and Robin, that is. "I saw her most directly."

Tisiphone looks down at her prayer-beads and swallows, looking faintly nauseated. Her nostrils flare with quick, shallow breaths as she listens to Karthasi's words. Sneaks another uneasy and sidelong glance over one shoulder, then the other. "Um," she replies, oh-so-helpfully. "Did she say anything to you?" It ought to be detached and light, searching for some hook to double back on for the sake of support. Reassurance that she's not mad. It's only stress. Instead, it sounds…curious. Almost hopeful.

Some portion of Tisiphone's demeanor, at least, catches onto the edge of Greje's attention, and she gives a moment's worth of scrutiny to the ill look, the shallow breathing. "Tisiphone— are you alright?" she wonders, instead of saying anything further on the topic of the sighting.

Tisiphone looks down at her prayer-beads, 'walking' her pinky and third finger to feed a couple of the beads through. "I, um." Teeth work at a well-gnawed spot on her bottom lip for several seconds before she looks up. It's an odd expression; sadness, perhaps, is its strongest component. "I saw her too, Sister. Two days ago, in the galley, with the- gift- I gave her." She slumps a back as she says this, her look at Karthasi somewhat flat. It's admitted. /Now/, what?

"…k," is what. A simple guttural noise expressing the priest's more than momentary astonishment. That doesn't happen. That's not supposed to happen. Not outside of the scriptures. Not for -real.- "This…" she finally begins again, "This is most peculiar." Recalling the question, "She… didn't say anything. Her… her lips did move, but, if— if she was making noises, I coudn't hear them. Did… she say anything to you?" she asks the question back.

An immediate, if slight, shake of Tisiphone's head. "She was…unhurt. Smiling." Her lips quirk, as if her body's telling her this is when she's supposed to smile, too. "Work clothes, with the rest of her crew. She- winked at me. Like we were joking about Caprica again. Then she was gone." She starts to reach for her cigarettes out of fidgety reflex, then stops herself. "Maybe- do you think it means something?" Omens and portents being an order of magnitude more reassuring than, say, psychosis.

Karthasi tries to get her brainmeats together into some sort of logical order, closing her eyes and shaking her head, slowly, not in negation, just as if trying to clear her mind of extraneous debris. "Ah— the spirits of the lost, in, in Scripture, typically appear either… to… warn the living of impending ate," she uses the technical term there, for destruction brought on by an act of folly, "To… upbraid the living for actions taken against them or their loved ones… or… to request completion of…" she pauses, drawing her lips together in a brief moment of agitation, before she convinces herself to continue: "The rites and observations that are their due."

Ignoring the first option — which is, of course, the one that cleaves most strongly to Tisiphone's mind — and mentally working her way through the presented list, Tisiphone takes a series of long, mostly-smooth breaths and tries to stare through the ground between her booted feet. "She liked the llama," she murmurs, checking one option off the list, as least as she's concerned. This leaves the only one she's willing to speak aloud. She looks up, staring at the chaplain for several seconds. "Jesse said there was nothing left to-" Tiny gesture. To you know what. "How could- what could you do?"

"I don't know. There isn't anything. A body left for the elements… untended by the proper rites…" Greje clutches her hands together between her knees, a helpless gesture. "Although…" she begins again, after a moment. "When Palinurus was lost at sea… his shade beseeched Aeneas for aid. And the shade itself held the key whereby he was to be given peace," she wends her way through the words. "Perhaps, given time, if… Robin is still, indeed, with us… she will find a way to let us know how we can best be of aid to her spirit," she lowers her chin in a slow nod, as if attempting to seal some sort of silver lining into place. "… Until then. She has attained her portion of divinity. We may place offerings to her on the altar, pour the honeyed wine to make her strong. As Odysseus, when he required the words of Tiresias, bolstered his spirit with offerings that he might find a voice with which to speak."

Tisiphone's gaze is very intent as Karthasi speaks, barely blinking. Hanging on — and onto — every word. By the end, they seem to have carried her to at least a foot's worth of solid ground, rather than leaving her to twist in the wind. "Okay," she murmurs once, then again, more determinedly. "Okay. Is this- Do you… are you feeling better about this, Sister? Feeling, um. Better in general?" Caught between awkwardness and concern again.

"I've never done anything like this, before, Tisiphone," Greje admits freely. "It… seems very odd. But these are… odd times, in which we're living. I wasn't certain how to explain the vision which I had seen here in the chapel. The fact that it was not an isolated incident, after all… I don't know what to make of that, either. But if Robin truly is with us, in some manner, or trying to tell us something. Then these would be the most logical steps, from a theological point of view, to pursue," and that, it seems, gives her some comfort. Logic. Reason. In a totally illogical and unreasonable circumstance. "And if not— well—" she looks to the altar. "It can't do any harm."

Tisiphone looks up from her prayer-beads and knotted fingers. "I'm… I'm sure you're right, Sister." She untangles her fingers, and shifts slightly against the seat, preparing to stand. The muscles in her legs twitch to propel her up, but she hesitates at the last second, looking back to Karthasi, instead. Softly and carefully, as if knowing the words could offend, she dares: "The Lords and Ladies speak to us all in different ways, Sister. It's a… pretty terrifying thing, when they choose a way you're not used to." With that she stands, eyes squirming away as she clears her throat.

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