PHD #084: Manning Up
Log Title
Summary: Quinn asks Trask to 'man up' and step up to lead the Harriers.
Date: 22 May 2041 AE
Related Logs: Those where we got exploded.
Quinn Trask 
The Eternal Bridge - Leonis
Despite its well-augured name, the Eternal Bridge did not emerge unscathed from the recent Cylon assault. The four-kilometer span that connects both banks of the city is now no more than a broken ruin, its brilliant steel towers jutting up from the riverbed while its deck lies crumpled and sagging. Carved stone casements once held aloft by decorative caryatids are now blackened reflections of their original selves. Bits and pieces of those statues lie with exploded sedans and smashed asphalt on the corpse-covered shores, caressed by softly rolling waves that reach almost to the cliffs.
Post-Holocaust Day: #84

Quinn didn't come back to the bed rolls last night that the two have been sharing, which was rare, needless to say. But a few people mentioned she, Samuel and Alessandra had fallen asleep curled up in the grass by the river, so hopefully Trask didn't panic too bad. She's made it back to the bedroll tonight, the crutch he helped her make carefully resting off to the side. It's raining, fortunately just lightly, but there's a bit of tarping up above their bed keeping it mostly dry. And she's got a comb. Slowly, but surely, she's picking out her red hair with it, section by section. It's not going well.

Little as the rain may be, Trask has been taking advantage of it. Uncertain when (for he doesn't believe it's a matter of if) the Centurions will gate-crash, he didn't bother to get undressed and was very quick in applying soap to areas he can wash without stripping down. Rinsing in such a manner is an afterthought, swiftly done simply by virtue of precipitation being present. Tout suite, he's again donning his protective gear.

Quinn did the same about 10 minutes earlier, including sudsing down a bit of her hair in attempts to make this whole process easier. It didn't really help. Still, the night on the bedroll might be a wee bit more pleasant than it has been the past few days, even if they've mostly become immune to the smells of camp and each other. Maggie picks at another section, swearing rather colourfully in backwater Aerilonian slang.

If that's not a wide-tooth comb, the redhead's in for a world of hurt. These days, Trask is keeping his hair shorter than usual, thanks to those scissors he nabbed, but it's still just long enough to be ruffled into a faint sense of kitten fuzz. Said shears are also utilized to keep his rather becoming beard nice and trim. He quit shaving quite some time ago. "Would some of that jojoba lotion help? It's not detangler but it's kinda oily," is asked as he enters the not quite tent.

Quinn looks up to him from her just slightly frizzer position than she was 10 minutes ago. "Maybe? Part of me thinks I should either just put it in dreadlocks and get it over with or cut it all off… but… it's a nice distraction, for the moment." And she continues gently picking at each little knot. Attack them one at a time, not all together, and she might get through this alright. "…How ya feelin'?" She inquires gently, looking him over with those ever protective eyes.

"Positively festive with this Ostara egg accessorizing my forehead," is quipped. The cuts on his face are healing over, but that lump he took when thrown from the exploding ATV is still noticeable and colored the sickly green and yellow of late-stage bruising. Damp as his hands are, they don't much help wiping away residual rain dripping down his brow. "I should have one of those travel-size bottles, unless someone swiped it." So far, no one's really looted Trask's loot. Case in point: he finds the item in his packed duffel.

"Thank you." Maggie laughs a moment, "This… might not do nice things to the bedroll, but I'll try to keep it out of swatting you in the face with my now extra-oily hair." She's not been the calmest of sleepers, tossing and turning almost constantly the moment she drops into dream land. He's gotten red hair in the face more than a few times as she flops over onto another side and ends up all up in his stuff. At least the dreams seem not too horrible, other than her begging someone to stop crying. He'll know, from the past, vivid dreams aren't rare for the farm girl. She accepts the oil, carefully smoothing it into the section of hair she's working on and gingerly working it in.

Apart from the occasional wisecrack, Kal nonetheless deals with typical aplomb such things as a mouthful of Maggie's messy mane. The main difference is that he makes a point of keeping her legs as immobile as possible when she starts tossing and turning, so she doesn't aggravate her injuries. "Not that you want 'em…" With a finger looped through one of the handles, he dangles the scissors and faintly lets them swing.

By all miracles, her once dislocated knee is almost back to its normal size and colour. She's been walking on it, using it to help her stay even a little bit mobile, and it seems to have helped, not hurt. But her other leg is still beyond useless so, despite her protests, she has needed the help. She glares up at those scissors, smirking faintly, "Not all of us can pull off half-shorn-dog as well as you do, Bootsie. I think I'll stick with the comb."

Those big, brown, puppy dog eyes of his surely help the half-shorn-dog style. It's a good thing he doesn't use them as often as he could. Then again, this restraint might merely make them all the more potent when that adorably deadly look is unleashed. For the nonce, he simply replies with, "Woof." Padding over to sit down next to Quinn, rivulets of water mark the man's motions from hither and yonder. The scissors are laid on the bedroll. "You sure? You could totally pull off something punk rock, I bet," Trask says with faux-innocence. Blame it on the hair color.

Quinn rolls her eyes, "I'm almost forty years old, dear. 'Punk Rock' is not in my vocabulary." She winks at him a moment later, though, and goes back to getting the knot free. The oil has helped, she's made progress on this lock of hair, at least. She exhales slowly then, eyes shutting… not physically tired, but exhausted otherwise. Still, doing her best to keep it together, but it's a fight. Especially in the private, quiet moments under their little abode.

"It should be," in her vocabulary. "Nothin' more punk rock than a punk rock granny. Talk about anti-establishment." Despite his calm demeanor, there is nothing leisurely about the way Bootstrap unlaces his boots, removes them, shakes them out, then peels off his socks to ring them into something slightly less soaked, and then puts all the items back on. Glancing over, Quinn's state is assessed, registered, and then superficially ignored. Which is to say that he pretends she's physically tired even though he knows she isn't, and that she probably knows that he knows. "Here… Lemme get that." It's not how he usually has his hands in a woman's hair, but why the frak not?

Quinn hesitates a moment. It was her one activity to keep her mind working, to not think about things… about the odds that she knows are completely stacked against them now. But he's offering, and he's being entirely too sweet, and that somehow makes it harder. She knows he's not a 'sweet' person until things are that bad. She sighs, handing the comb over quietly. "Thanks." She allows the silence to linger then, eyes reopening to stare forward into the dark rain beyond them. "…Kal… how… How do you feel about a… command position?" She finally dares to ask him, albeit quietly. Better to approach this from a business perspective than to say 'I'll probably never fly again'… This is about practicalities. Not emotion.

<FS3> Trask rolls Reactive: Failure.

Okay, so it's not exactly like when he was a child and he'd brush his mother's hair while she brushed his younger sister's after one of his father's particularly brutal moments of 'family bonding'. Nor is it the kind of tugging that happens during a hot and heavy frak in a supply closet. Even so, Trask isn't entirely clueless about the task. Mostly clueless, sure. Entirely, no. Indeed, he makes every attempt to be delicate during the process, but he has man hands. Strike one! Plus, the matted curls are rather greasy, which means he's trying to maintain his grip. Strike two! Oh, and then there's the moment of 'wait… is she saying what I think she is saying?'. Strike three! Whatever he just pulled is not about to obey his fingers. More to the point, it's going to unintentionally cause Maggie a bit of pain. Aware of this fact, the ECO winces. "Sorry 'bout that…"

Quinn lets out another one of those Aerilonian curses, ancient and rough with just a bit of a lilt on the edge to stop the spit that should come with it. She reaches a hand up, rolling her eyes to him and grabbing the comb back. "Men. Can talk and use yer hands at the same time. Give that to me." She takes it back, going back to the gentle picking she was doing earlier. "Now listen to me. How do you feel. About. A command. Position." SO he can't mis-hear it this time.

"I said I was sorry," he protests, his feelings a bit hurt. Granted, that's probably not the sole reason his mouth is crimping into the onset of a frown. Without a doubt, the JiG would've, in his cheeky way, twisted around what Quinn just asked, but the hint of petulance currently present would've been absent had she not gotten snippy at his (failed) attempt at being caring. "I'm not gonna role-play being Major Tilldozer plowing you."

Generally, Maggie is a bit better at emotions than he is. But when she sees her career, and possibly her life, crumbling before her… a bit of that maturity breaks down. Easier to make light of things and push it away than to admit she's come to the end of her rope. She sighs. "…Sorry." Is the first apology, for having snapped. Her eyes close again, quiet annoyance tugging at her brow at that joke. "This isn't a frakking game, Kal. I'm serious. You think I'm ever really going to walk again on this leg? Or fly? If you do, you're a gods be damned dreamer…" She growls out quietly, shaking her head. "I won't be able to lead the Harriers, even if I DO survive this by some stretch of luck. Someone else needs to step up. I hope it's you."

The apology placates him somewhat, even as it flares his sense of righteous indignation. "Thank you." Beat. "I'm still not gonna forgive you for another 5 minutes." For snapping at him, anyway. For bringing up how she's likely never going to fly again? Yeah… that's gonna take a lot longer. "You're sure as frak not gonna if you keep trying to walk on it," is Trask's sardonic reply. Deny and avoid is his version of divide and conquer. "An' if you don't survive, it's 'cuz I died first. And seeing that I sure as frak am not about to die, neither are you."

Quinn finally just lets the comb drop to her lap, not wanting to divide her attention from this conversation any more. She shifts around so she's facing him dead on and he can see her eyes, a rather strict, motherly sternness in her features as she catches him in the attempt to avoid her inquiry. "You didn't answer my question, Kal. And I sure as hell gotta know you can face the tough shit head on if I'm making you SL. Leg or not… walking or not, it's going to be months before I'm back in the seat in an ideal situation. I can't leave my squadron without a strong pilot at the front. And you're it. So man up or tell me to start looking somewhere else." Her voice is sharp and cold, boxing away every emotion to keep control through this conversation.

She's wants to know how he feels about a command position? Fine. Cue the flippant tone. "You gonna stay on as my secretary? 'cuz paperwork sucks." The battle has just begun, and Trask is going to challenge her every which way and likely provoke her to the point that Quinn will want to throttle him. When all is said and done, though, this acting out will ultimately die down. The man is pragmatic, after all, and has a sense of duty. He'll step up and stand steadfast when he actually must. Between now and then, however, Maggie's gonna have to drag him to that point, much like a mother who has to outlast the tantrum of a toddler.

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