PHD #328: Pepper, Pepper, Pepper, SALT!
Pepper, Pepper, Pepper, SALT!
Summary: Sawyer and Cidra have some girl time. No innocent condiments were harmed in the making of this log.
Date: 20 Jan 2042 AE
Related Logs: Men and Machines & Uncomplicated (Cidra searches for Salt in the Baer cave)
Sawyer Cidra Crabby 
Colonial Pete's - MV Elpis
Colonial Pete's is the long-awaited successor to Kythera's Aquarian Pete's, though this version is more bar than strip club. Not that there aren't any strippers here, in fact there's even a raised platform complete with pole built just for them. The majority of the room, however, is dominated by mis-matched tables and chairs and a long bar. Lighting is haphazard, the harsh fluorescents that came with the place usually left off in favor of lower lighting from scavenged lamps and even a bit of neon rustled up from somewhere and hung behind the bar. There's a pretty decent sound-system playing a wide variety of music, and a couple of low-tech bar games, like a mini pyramid arena.

There are always a few burly-looking guys around to keep an eye on rowdy patrons, and especially to guard the doors to the back rooms, where the stills are kept along with (rumors say) a few private alcoves for those willing to pay extra for one-on-one time with the girls.

A large black chalkboard that once adorned Cerberus' Ready Room hangs behind the bar. Scrawled on its surface beneath a crude picture of a steaming bowl are the words 'SOUP OF THE DAY: MOONSHINE.'
Post-Holocaust Day: #328

You can tell when shift change occurs on the Cerberus, like clockwork (following a short time to account for a shuttle ride), the population of Pete's suffers an influx. Right now seems to be prime time, and people are jostling for a place to sit or stand and imbibe in their favorite Still Swill. Thankfully, Sawyer's already appropriated a table in the back and is guarding it like any good watch dog. The old wooden wire spool now serves as a table, the surface stained with the water-rings of drinks past. The journalist is currently staring into a glass of clear liquid, her manicured fingernail dipping into the booze to try and snag a little floating piece of grit from the surface.

Crabby squawks out, "Down the Hatch!"

Cidra is part of the influx tonight. She's not exactly a common sight at Colonial Pete's. The CAG doesn't often get enough liberty time that she can afford to spend it off Cerberus. But apparently she carved out some tonight, for into the bar she comes. In her off-duties, but they're still Navy off-duties. She scans about and, once her target is spotted, makes directly for the reporter. "Sawyer." The other woman earns a smile. Though her glass is eyed skeptically as Cidra sits. She's not sampled the moonshine here before. "What does that taste of?"

"Heartburn, lighterfluid, and a nice sawdust finish. I highly recommend it." Sawyer stops digging in her drink, successful or not, and wipes her hand off on her trouser leg. The smile the journalist returns is a little ragged around the edges. "Cidra, how are you?" And it's not one of those flippant questions either, but an honest inquiry probably fueled by the original request for girl time.

Cidra did indeed inform Sawyer, in her ever slightly-stilted way, that she required an evening on the Elpis to discuss matters of recent personal import. "I will…have what she is having," she orders from a conveniently-passing server. A shrug as she slouches comfortably into her seat. "I have heard no reports of blindness, so I presume it cannot be that bad." She does not immediately answer the question, taking a moment to look around the place thoughtfully. "This is my first time over here, apart from courier runs in my Raptor. And I did not stray far from the hangar on those. I shall admit I have avoided spending time too much among the civilians in these last few months. Present company excluded, obviously."

"Come now, I'm no oridinary civilian. If I were, you wouldn't let me into your wing's berthing to terrorize the masses. I'm a special breed." Sawyer relaxes against the back of her chair, drawing up her knee to hitch it on the edge of the table. "I probably should spend more time over here. I've been with the Cerberus for nearly a year, sometimes it's hard to remember I'm not /actually/ military. Besides the whole saluting thing." She toys with a pack of cigarettes, but doesn't yet pull out one of the cancer sticks. "Anyways. I'm taking a furlough for a few days, and I'll be over here. So thanks for venturing over, I don't really know of a private place here yet."

"It was more those given to fits of stabbing I have been avoiding," is Cidra's dry, but rather humorless, reply. A touch of bitterness in her tone she doesn't bother to mask. Sitka's death still weighs on her, obviously, though she doesn't speak of it beyond that oblique mention. The cigarettes are, of course, noted. She has a DRADIS-like ability to hone in on the things. "Make I…I believe the colloquial term is 'bum' one?" It is always a little odd when she attempts to use slang, and this is no exception. "How is the mood over here? Among the civilians, I do mean. I had hoped matters would improve when they were out of our hangar, but from recent reports I am not so sure. Granted it is, I again admit, a matter I have been rather avoiding." Her drink is delivered and she sips. Her nose wrinkles, but it's nothing beyond her general slight wince at the taste of hard liquor. The CAG is not a hard drinker.

Crabby squawks out, "Alert Stations! Alert Stations!"

"They are a twitchy bunch, that's for certain." Sawyer lofts her glass up in a silent toast before she takes a sip immediately following Cidra's experimental one. "I'd say this stuff puts hair on your chest, but I'm pretty sure it's meant to strip it off." Her tongue touches the corner of her mouth to taste the lingering alcohol while she pushes the pack of smokes towards Cidra. "Bum is correct." There's a long pace of time that Sawyer is silent, waiting while the CAG lights up before she continues with conversation. "Right now everyone is acting on mob mentality. They'll do whatever the loudest most insistant voice says they should be doing. Unfortunately, the loudest most insistant voice happens to belong to a sharp man who knows exactly what kind of frenzy he's frothing."

Cidra doesn't interrupt the quiet, busying herself with lighting up her cig and dragging on it. She listens to Sawyer, slim frown coming to her features. "But what is the point of it all? They are alive, which is far better than those billions back on the colonies can say at present. I do not understand. Do they not see they have a duty to preserve what is left of us, not tear it down?" It's a very military perspective, but Cidra is nothing if not very military.

Crabby squawks out, "Call the ball! Call the ball!"

Sawyer makes a little 'mm' sound in the back of her throat. "I'm not sure what the point of it all is. To raise some sort of discord with the military? The truth of the matter is, we need each other. We both have services that we should be providing the other whether it's the hydroponics or defense against the Cylons. Both sides do things the other can not. I think the ultimate goal, however badly formed, is to push people out of a sense of complacency and make sure they reform a government so when it comes down to the nuts and bolts, everyone is held accountable in the system of checks and balances." Sawyer makes a little shrug with her shoulders. "If I thought I properly had a head for the politics of it all, I would have stuck with that vein."

"There is little point in the military existing without the civilian population," Cidra says. "We all took oaths to protect and serve the citizens of the colonies, and that duty still remains with us. Government?" Her slim frown is thoughtful, but still a frown. "Whatever forms in terms of leadership on this ship needs people like you and that Miss Ibbhanas. Not hot-heads and ruffians and killers. For my part, if the civilians could mind themselves, I would much prefer it. Our resources should be focused on protection and combat, not playing minders. Though I shall admit, I do think it shall be a bad end if those ruffians do take control of the people here. Is there any real civilian authority left? The military, at least, has structure. Colonels, majors, commanders."

"Not me, I'm not a leader. And when I spoke to Miss Ibbhanas, she seemed reluctant at best. I still hold out high hopes for her, but if you're putting your eggs in my basket, the whole of humanity is doomed. I'm just a reporter. I take facts and feed them back to people. I can't even manage my own personal life, much less hundreds of souls." And to that, Sawyer takes a good gulp of alcohol, as if to drown those thoughts away.

"I just fight and fly and die," Cidra says. "Which I think most days, when I hear of matters of politics, is a most simple existence." Mention of 'personal life' makes her grimace. And down some more of her drink as well. "So say we all." She clears her throat. Not going on right away. Just drinking more. "I did think by the time I was nearing forty men would become less…complicated."

Crabby squawks out, "Keep the frakkin jarheads out!"

Sawyer focuses on her glass, turning it on little circles on the giant wood spool to add her condensation rings to join the history of the others. "No matter how old you are, how mature you think you've become, it still comes down to playground rules. You hurt the ones you love. They punch you in the arm and run away and soon you grow tired of chasing."

"That is a…depressingly apt way of putting it," Cidra says. Smoking some more. There's a hesitancy about her. Then, as is so often the case with her, she just plows directly and artlessly bluntly into the thing she spent so much time dancing around. "I slept with Papa Baer."

Sawyer's words sound like some sort of autobiography, and there's only a nod as Cidra deems it depressing. She's about half-way through a drink of the moonshine when the CAG's little confession pours forth. It's a painful thing to snort alcohol, and Sawyer's eyes start to water as she tries to stop from doing just that. She forces down the mouthful of liqour with a pained expression. "Well…I guess…there are worse things? I vaguely recall him being attractive."

"Skiron is an attractive man, yes," Cidra says. Not that she sounds particularly gushy about it. "And quite charming. A fine officer. And a highly-skilled pilot. I have never seen a man who can handle a Viper like he can." And yet, there's still much uncertainty beneath the superlatives. "It was after the Cylons attacked the ship over Tauron. When Cerberus was crippled for all that time. I had to land on the Areion for repairs, and to plan with him, and we just sort of…" She makes a vague gesture with her be-cigaretted hand.

Crabby squawks out, "Alert Stations! Alert Stations!"

"It seems that attack was responsible for a lot of lapses in judgment." Sawyer says dryly. The Journalist's eyes narrow slightly as she studies Cidra's face. "So what's the big deal then? Handsome, charming, highly 'skilled'," The way the word is repeated, Sawyer obviously doesn't mean in the cockpit, "You said yourself you're good at compartmentalizing and he's even on a separate ship. It seems a rather ideal arrangement, even if it was a one night stand. Was it? Just a one night stand?"

"I have had better," Cidra mutters. Though she quickly adds, "Not that it was not pleasant. He is fully functional. And he has excellent reflexes. Flying a Viper is really excellent…training, in such areas." Ahem. "Yes. No. You are right. In many ways it is quite ideal. On paper. I fear I may have…complicated things, however. When we were together. We have not…done anything beyond discuss business with the coordination of our Wings since."

For a reporter, Sawyer doesn't just dig right in to get the meat of what Cidra's trying to dance around. Instead, she takes the friend approach and the Two-Step right with the CAG. "I haven't had /any/ in nearly nine months. At this point, I'd settle for having had better. So if you haven't really spoken, then how can it be complicated?"

"You have not had any?" Cidra blinks. Surprised at this. "I had assumed you and Bootstrap had worked out some sort of…arrangement. He seems to be frequenting the Newsroom most often." She sips at her drink. "Why have you not? Kal Trask is a well set-up man. Often aggravating. This I know. And not my type. But he *very* much needs…well. I suspect my life would be easier if he had an outlet for his physical frustrations beyond his pornography collection. Nine months?" She falls quiet. Thoughtful. Perhaps doing some math in her head. Or trying to speculate off the amount of time.

"What can I say, I've hit one epic dry spell." At the mention of Trask, Sawyer bites the inner pad of her cheek. There's a long moment, and one of Sawyer's shoulders rises in a half-shrug as if she can't fully commit to the gesture. "Historically, I've avoided the situation of relationships. They don't terribly work well when your line of work includes distancing yourself from emotional connection. It's hard to distance yourself when there no longer is any place to run to." Where is Sawyer going with all this? Hard to say, because her train of thought gets cut off abruptly when she downs what's left of her drink in a quick glug. "Kal's not interested. So yeah, nine months."

Crabby squawks out, "Yo mama …."

"Not interested?" Cidra snorts. "The fool for him. His loss. I do know what you mean, though. I have not been with a man more than six months since my husband died, and those not seriously. It was easy enough to break matters off when you were changing assignments within a year or so. Now…we are all stuck with each other. For better or worse. In many ways it would be easier with Skiron. But I fear I…complicated things with him."

Sawyer raises a hand to flag down a server, and once she has their attention, she just holds up two fingers to signal they're ready for another round. Even if Cidra isn't, Sawyer's suddenly feeling a little parched in light of the current conversation topic. "So you've mentioned. But how did you complicate things, my dear friend?"

"You recall when we spoke of those…dreams I was having?" Cidra sips her drink some more. Lowering her voice. "I may have, sort of…had that come to mind when we were…together. And I may have called Papa…Salt. When we were…you know…" Another vague hand gesture follows.

The journalist pitches forward, the table the only thing that keeps her from closing any more distance to the CAG. "Whoa, wait. What? You…no way. Oh, Cidra. Oh frak. Did he put two and two together? I mean…maybe it was lost in the heat of the moment? I once called an ex boyfriend by his roommate's name, but he was too busy watching himself in a mirror to notice."

"It is all right. I think I…covered for it," Cidra says, idly running her fingers through her hair. Toying with the long strands. She does not explain how. "I really do not see why he would. Salt is a condiment. It means nothing, or anything, unless you…know what it means." A self-depracating smirk at Sawyer's mention of her ex. "Makes things rather awkward, does it not? So, you see."

"Don't sleep with him again." It's sage advice coming from the one who hasn't rolled in the sheets for three quarters of a year. "I'm serious. Don't sleep with him again, because if you can't put this bastard Salt out of your head it's bound to get you in trouble. You know he's been undoubtedly briefed about the known models /and/ their aliases. Salt is no longer a condiment."

"It is still a condiment," Cidra insists. She looks around their table, in search of a salt shaker to wield. But there isn't one readily available. "I am sure if I asked our server for some she would not assume I was requesting a skinjob." She sighs. "But…no. I know. I have not slept with him again and I cannot say I terribly want to. My hope is he regards the whole incident as simply…embarrassing all around and lets the matter drop." Her hope.

Sawyer's struck by a sudden grin, "Can you imagine? Oooooh Pepper!" There's a snicker in her voice she can't quite avoid. "Ketchup!" The Journalist's voice raises, and she thumps the table for underneath, her head lulling in the approximation of being in the throes of sex. "Mustard! Mustard! Oooooh do it to me, MUSTARD!" Okay, that garnered a few looks, and Averies dissolves into a fit of laughter.

Crabby squawks out, "Call the ball! Call the ball!"

Cidra clasps her cigarette between her fingers and *eyes* Sawyer across the table. Lips twitching. She does her best to keep her manner inscrutable and generally humorless. But, finally, she can't help but snort a laugh. "I like mustard. It can be spicey." Which just makes her devolve into actually chuckling.

Sawyer reaches up to wipe away tears from the corners of her eyes with the heel of her hand. "Oh, I'm sorry. I'm sorry. That was tasteless, but completely and absolutely hilarious." By now, people have gone back to their drinks, some still shaking their heads at the mock-orgasm that just occured in the CAG's corner. Sawyer's laughter dies away with one last hiccup. "And I thought I had it bad."

"It is ridiculous, is it not?" Cidra's still laughing, shaking her head. "My gods, Sawyer. I most definitely needed that." Noting the looks their table is garnering, she levels a *look* over her shoulder at the patrons of a neighboring table. "There is nothing wrong with enjoying spices. Do not judge."

Sawyer calms down with one final exhale of breath, relaxing back against her chair with a small smile affixed to her face. "It helps if we can laugh at ourselves. Somehow, it makes it all that much easier to /BAER/." Okay, so she had to get one last pun in there, which is timed perfectly with the delivery of their next round.

Crabby squawks out, "Pull my finger! Pull my finger! … No .. my other finger!"

"Very punny," is Cidra's droll reply. "The man's name does lend itself to dirty jokes, does it not? Well, here is to Papa Baer. Thank you for the memories, I shall not frequent your cave again." She finishes her drink and orders another, of course. She's not a heavy drinker, but she'll certainly kill another round before drifting back to Cerberus.

Sawyer lifts her glass to the toast to Baer, drinking to his memory with Cidra. "Here's to learning from our mistakes. And damn, how I wish I could make a few tonight." Drinks are ordered, drinks are dispensed and drinks are paid for all from Sawyer's personal stash of vouchers as the journalist foots the bill for the CAG, too.

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