PHD #369: Peapods
Summary: Bunny and Leyla deal with the aftermath of her desertion.
Date: 2 Mar 2042 AE
Related Logs: The Slow Spiral (Leyla's reasons). Far Away Home (backstory)
Evandreus Leyla 
Hangar Deck - Port
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.
Post-Holocaust Day: #369

CAP has long since ceased feeling long to Evandreus Doe. He's in, he's out, he's back and on deck— unless the cylons show up. Today, though— today CAP just… lagged. On and on. Maybe it's the long, protracted pause in all the fighting making time feel faintly suspended. Or maybe it's the comm line across to the other Raptor on CAP, and the person he knows is on the other end of it, making every report over to the other boat chafe just a little. He's never been much of a one to chatter over comms on CAP. Maybe it all sounds normal on the other end of the line. Brisk, professional, nothing extraneous. But once Evan lands, he's long, long past finishing post-flight, Stiffy long dismissed before he finally crawls from his boat, helmet under his arm.

Leyla's been out of the raptor for quite a while, by the time Bunny steps out. The flight suit's been removed, for the time being, and she's in her coverall, and well on her way to going over the repairs that still need to be done to Bertha, who was down for repairs when she first went out. Checklist in hand, as she settles in on the winglet, marking off each repair that's been done, and what needs to be completed before the ship is back at 100 percent. Certainly she could have left this to the deck, but she, more than anyone else, knows she has to face the music eventually. The sheer civility of CAP was the first clue. The fact that Bunny never left the raptor the second.

Evandreus hands off the last of the finished paperwork to Gi, only waiting for the deckie to head back over in order to sign the last box, then pass it off for witness signature. "Thanks, hun," he tells the guy, tucking his now-freed arm up against him to unfasten the top of his suit, looking one way and then the other carefully in preparation for crossing the deck, though his transambulatory intent is arrested when he sees Sweet Pea still here, despite his acute attack of stalling.

The sound of Bunny's voice doesn't go unheard, nor the fact that he seems quite self-contained, all things considered. But Leyla doesn't rise from the raptor, though she does settle the clipboard in her lap, eyes tracking the movement of the other pilot. There's no hand raised, no request for him to walk over. She simply waits.

Evandreus' eyes widen for only a split second, and then, incrementally, they narrow. Yes, he sees her. He's looking right at her. Maybe he's waiting, himself. But the longer he stands in wait, the cloudier his expression grows, and, finally, nostrils flaring subtly in a huff that seems to stand in the place of some sentiment along the lines of, 'No? Well.' He pulls his arm closer to him, hugging the helmet against the side of his chest, and he steps off lightly, moving across the marked-off aisles.

Once Bunny starts in her direction, Leyla finally sets aside the clipboard, setting it on top of her little toolkit and coming to her feet. She might as well present a substantial target for whatever's coming. She meant what she said about Bunny being Trask's family. And she's spent the last week bearing the brunt of having insulted his family. And doing so while not being in the berthings.

Evandreus holds his helmet fast, arms tense, as if it were a shield he could put up between himself and his once-upon-a-time safe haven. He tries his best to keep his eyes straight ahead, defiant, but he can't, quite. Dark lashes shade his eyes, deflecting his gaze down and aside toward a patch of flooring on the opposite side of the aisle from Leyla as he passes by on his way to the double stairwell.

And Leyla, for her part, makes no attempt to meet the other pilot halfway, simply remaining where she's standing. Though, at the least, given she's on the wing and he's on his feet, she's close to his eye level. But once she sees him heading away and towards the stairs, Leyla offers the only response she can, given the circumstances, "I'm sorry, Bunny."

Evandreus gracelessly comes to a stop, the kinetic energy in his form rolling forward with the determination of his step while his brain trips up his feet with the processing of Leyla's words. He shifts the helmet directly in front of him, hugging it close as the conflict of energies resolves itself in a strange half-shrug of his shoulders. Turning to peer back at her, his glance is almost shy, almost scared. "You don't— you don't owe me anything," he tells her. "It's not as though I have any claim on you." 'Obviously,' is the unspoken addendum that adds just that little spark of bitter ache to the words.

Finally, Leyla does move. A step down from the raptor, and as short work as short legs can make the distance between herself and Bunny. Unlike with Trask, where she stayed out of his striking distance, Leyla moves well within the other pilot's reach, "Yes, you do, Bunny. Yes you do, you have for a long time. And I did owe you something. An explanation, even if you might not have accepted it, might not have understood it. I shouldn't have left you like that, you deserved better than that. Better than me. I was angry and hurt and you had to pay the price for that."

Evandreus doesn't reach out, despite Leyla coming within range. He certainly isn't going to hit her. He doesn't believe in hitting. And his arms are busy trying to crack his flight helmet against his chest, anyhow. Or maybe he's trying to use his helmet to steady his breathing as his fragile facade of not caring cracks under the pressure of the hurt. "You know… you know how much trouble I was having. Sleeping," he whispers. "By myself. And after— I thought— your stuff was— gone. And you were gone. I didn't even know— if you— if you—" he grasps, choking on frustration, for words that won't come for the tears threatening to come back. "You didn't even say good-bye," he changes tacks, a deep-settled anxiety riddling the complaint.

Leyla deserves that. Bunny's pain, his frustration, his upset. His blame. And despite the fact that he makes no move to approach her, Leyla does lifts a hand, almost touching, but then allowing it to drop, as if she knows she hasn't the right anymore. It's that gesture, even more than the brightness in her eyes, the tears that come, but won't fall, that signals her regret, "I was so angry. What happened, it hurt so much, Bunny. And I was afraid….that if I stayed." A shake of her head, as she cuts that thought off before it can make its way all the way out of her mouth, "All I wanted to do was run away. And I left you behind. I should have…" What, taken him with her? Told him so he could have talked her out of it? She doesn't know, "I'm sorry." What do you say when nothing you can say will make it right? "I don't expect you to accept it, I don't deserve that."

Evandreus' eyes aren't too shy to leak openly in the middle of the deck. He's cried in front of people before, and probably will not stop in the immediate future. The tears, on resuming, at least seem to take some of his tension with them, losing it in the beardscruff he hasn't had the energy to scrape off of his face in the last week or so, leaving him to look away again, look down, eyes registering weariness and a quiet sorrow. "It's fine." It's not, but that's what you say, right? "You have to do what's right for you. I can't… expect you to bend your own life around backward to suit me. You don't have to worry. I'll be okay." Without her. "Okay?"

"No, it's not okay and it's not fine. I hurt you, terribly and that's never going to be okay." Leyla finally bridges the gap, attempting, first, to retrieve his helmet, before he crushes it into powder. And then, once she's set it aside, carefully, tentatively, to attempt to slide her arms around his waist, "What's right for me includes you, Bunny. I let my own feelings lead me to forget that." If he doesn't accept, Leyla will simply step back, accepting, "You are my life, Bunny, a big part of it. And I let you down."

Evandreus ' arms seem stuck clenched around the empty space his helmet used to occupy before it was popped down out of his grasp, muscles stiff and sore, arms hanging awkward as if he, of all people, has forgotten how to properly give a hug. But he doesn't try to escape, doesn't push her away, only lets his eyes keep leaking. "Been hurt before," he keeps his voice low. "Left before. You'd think I'd be used to it by now." He tries after a goofy smile to turn it into a joke, but there's too much there for the smile to last more than a flicker of a second.

Leyla's own hug lasts only a moment, the offer made, but not accepted and she steps back, arms coming up to hug herself now. It's not a verbal dismissal, but it is one nonetheless. It seems forgiveness isn't going to be in the cards for her. "You of all people shouldn't have to be used to it." Again, that shake of her head, "I…I shouldn't have done that." Tried to hug him, she likely means, "I won't presume on you again."

Evandreus nods slowly, hazily, vaguely acknowledging that something fundamental has changed between them, even if he's not sure exactly where 'that' is pointing back to, himself. "I'll be okay," he assures her again. "Van found me wandering and is letting me sleep with her for now. But I should really try to learn how to sleep by myself again, anyhow." A pause, then, "Are you going to be okay?"

Leyla's voice is soft, almost hesitant, as she answers, "I was going to ask, if…if you wanted to try again. But…I guess you found the person you should have found in the first place. She's a good woman. She won't let you down." Not like Leyla herself did. As for whether or not she'll be okay, she'll just choose not to answer. "I guess sometimes you don't get second chances." Eyes away, she moves to reclaim Bunny's helmet from where she set it on a rolling cart.

"Oh…" the word is barely a breath from the Bunny as Leyla professes her desire, speechless otherwise until her last statement twists at his heart, making it hop around in his chest not unlike his namesake, thrashing against the insides of his ribs in an irregular-feeling flutter that leads him into a moment of dizziness. He leans forward just as Leyla's pulling away, moving a hand to entangle her fingers in his. "No. No, no. I didn't… I didn't think you were going to come back. You… if you want me. Just tell me that."

Leyla pauses, as Bunny catches her hand, and she just looks down at her fingers in his. Her hand in his, "You've got Van. And…I've been staying with Mark. Captain Makinen. We're, I'm not sure we're sure what we are, but we've been sharing his bunk since I left. We could still find a way, couldn't we Bunny?" Four little peapods now, instead of two. "Between the two of us, myself and Natalie," yes she does actually know the woman's first name, even if she never calls her anything but Lieutenant, "you'd never have to be alone."

There's an intensity in the way Evan holds Leyla's hand, something decidedly unlike his usual genial grasp. Like there's something invested here, something he's terrified to lose, now that there's a glimmer of hope that it isn't lost. "It's good you've got a place to stay… someone to be with. I didn't know… if you were in a closet somewhere, or— who knows? But like I said," he finally lets go, "If you want… we can."

Bunny might let go, but it's Leyla who reaches out again, settling her hand back into Bunny's, "And you've got someone to be with too. But that doesn't mean we can't find time for each other." Because different isn't necessarily better. What Bunny's found with the small marine, or Leyla with the not so small engineer, it's just…different. "Come on, let's go get cleaned up. And then we can move into your bunk." Silly to have two, when one is all they'll need, right?

Unless otherwise stated, the content of this page is licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 License