PHD #088: Presence of Mind
Presence of Mind
Summary: Tisiphone discusses possible escape with Bannik, and her SL with Kulko.
Date: 2041.05.25
Related Logs: All Leonis logs.
Bannik Kulko Tisiphone 

There's a wrought-iron bench out in the dead brown embassy grounds, styled to match the fence. It's not the safest place to pick to brood, but with the thuggish retinue the MolGen group acquired surveying everything like they are, Tisiphone seems content enough to be there. She's stretched out along it, boots dangling off one end, smoking a cigarette, her eyes closed against the sunshine.

"Hey, Tisi." Bannik is apparently coming outside to get an irradiated breath of fresh air. His helmet is off; it's a small nod to the safer circumstances that they're in. "Got a little bit more room for another?" He nods to the bench.

"Tyr," Tisiphone greets, her eyelids dragging open only a scant sliver to watch the deckie approach. "You bet. Pull up an uncomfortable chunk of your own." She doesn't sit up, but she draws her knees up, booted heels against her backside, to provide enough room for him to sit down. "Almost had a good night's sleep last night, you know?" she says on a breath of smoke. "You?"

Bannik drops himself down onto the bench. Ker-thud goes the armor. He winces a little at the smoke, but he doesn't say anything. He doesn't dare. "I'm doing okay. Just seeing what I'm needed to do. No Vipers around to fix, you know? But not like you have any fly, so I guess we're even."

Tisiphone isn't wearing her armour today. Just that unbelievably pink shirt with the ridiculous rhinestones. Her olive-drab buttonup is tied off around her waist. She's exhaling her smoke away from Bannik, because she can be a conscientious smoker when she wants to be, but, as all non-smokers know, it really only helps so much. "The Fed we picked up the day before yesterday. Hal. He was making noise that he knows a way off Leonis that just needed more manpower."

"Really?" Bannik didn't seem to hear that. "He knows how to get us off this rock? How many more people? What does he need? Maybe he needs a ship fixed or something." Deckies know how to do that. He can be USEFUL. His eyes light up, suddenly all asparkle.

Tisiphone's eyes again sneak a sliver open, squinty against the sunshine. "I know, right?" She's a simple girl with simple pleasures, sometimes — and making someone's eyes light up? That's always a treat. The hint of a smile edges one corner of her mouth upward. "I don't know the details. I just overheard him mention it last night while we were on the move. I think everyone just collapsed last night. Bet he'll bring it up soon, though."

Kulko has arrived.

"I bet so. Totally." Bannik nods his head firmly. It makes sense, after all. What other way to get off the planet that would need people? "I mean, Damon's the mechanical lead. I know avionics. Between the two of us —" His voice trails off. "We should be totally able to get it going if we can scrounge the parts." His mind is racing, despite knowing nothing about the task.

"I can play fake deckie again, too, if you guys need me." Tisiphone's energy has been flagging since Saturday, but the offer's made immediately and genuinely. "Might be parts of it need fixing that look enough like an engine or plough for me to figure out." She drags hard on her cigarette and lets out a smoky snort, eyes lolled shut again.

"Get what goin'?" The interjection comes from a few meters off, as the JTAC saunters out, freshly shaven and seemingly better rested. "That tight lipped sonofabitch tell you what he's got cookin?" He comes to a stop near the pair's bench, offering a scout's salute. "Tisi. Bannik." Belated, but not forgotten.

Bannik glances up at Kulko when he approaches, clamoring to his feet, his armor rattling. It's that enlisted instinct. But at least his helmet is off. "Uh. Sir. No. We. Were. Ah. Just speculating, is all. I mean. Must be a ship or something, right?"

<Fade Bannik for RL>

The faint smile edging along Tisiphone's mouth twitches a bit at the sound of Kulko's voice. She turns her head to look toward him, squinting against the sunshine. The cigarette's plucked out of her mouth and gestured at him as she asks, "The frak you find a razor?" The red bandana she's been sporting is only half sunburn deterrent — the rest is keeping the dandelion-fuzz effect at bay.

"Bartered away some of that Gods-awful whiskey to onea them fellas with the green armbands. Forgot what they call 'emselves." He watches Bannik scurry off, then assumes the crewman's vacated seat. "Welcome to it if you want, but you'll have to make do with cold water'n no shavin' soap."

"The- Fed. Hal? Something he said last night, about knowing a pilot and maybe a way outta here that just needed more manpower. Gotta be a ship, right?" Tisiphone shrugs faintly and tucks the cigarette back into the corner of her mouth before stre-e-etching her arms off the edge of the bench. "No soap? Mmn." It's a dubious noise. "Might try and tough it out a little longer." It only itches when she thinks about it. Which is- crap. She scrubs at her scalp through the bandana.

"I can't think of much else that could get us off this rock, save a .45 to the temple." Dark humor, it seems, is the order of the week. "You sleep alright? Nice to get offa concrete and rubble for once."

Tisiphone's mouth twitches again. She works her pinky finger in under her wrist-cuff, and starts rubbing around the edges of the leather, forefinger trailing along the metal charms to check for bent edges. "Better than I have been," she says at length. "It's a weight off to know everyone- almost everyone's pulled through." There's more she's about to say, then seems to change her mind to drag on her cigarette, instead.

"Almost?" Kulko queries, waiting for Tis to finish her drag before he reaches out two fingers and plucks it from between her lips, pulling a drag off of his own. "Way I see it, things coulda gone a lot worse. 3 KIAs out of near thirty? Given what we've all gone through?"

A faint frown creases Tisiphone's sunburned brow for a moment when her cigarette's nicked, fading away a beat later. "Yeah. That's what I said," she replies, a touch defensively. "Almost everyone." She frowns again, shaking her head in a sort of mute 'never mind' and pulls herself half-upright, leaned back against the armrest, propped on her forearms. "You told Lieutenant Oberlin yet?" No specification on /what/ should be told. It's left vague.

"Ain't had the opportunity, just yet." He pulls a second drag before Kulko passes back the smoke. "Well, don't be dancin' in circles. What'd ya mean by it?"

She's frowning again when she takes the cigarette back. There's not much left of it, and even less remaining after the hard drag Tisiphone pulls from it. She starts digging for her pack. It's a race against time — will she find it before the cherry fades out? "I- what? I didn't mean anything by it. Was just- saying. So far, so good, you know? That's all. Frak, man." So. Prickly. "I think we should tell everyone. About that- woman, and Salt, at least."

"I think you're right," Stephen assures her, reaching into his pocket for a smoke of his own. "But I want to sit down with Calvin first, make sure we've got all our intel straight." He lights up, his prized Cerberus lighter long since lost. "Lasher's been givin' you an awful hard time since we got down here. That always so?"

Tisiphone stops rummaging when Kulko starts, and instead concentrates on drawing her cigarette's last gasp down into her lungs. Lasher is mentioned as she's flicking the butt away, and her expression shutters up like a storm-door covered in pike-points, eyes kept on an old bloodstain on her fatigues. "Nah. Not like this, but-" The tone is far too light to actually be casual. "-there's never been anything I say that's worth it to him."

"Not right of 'im. You got a disagreement, that's one thing entirely, but his tossin' out what you got to say just because he ain't said it is quite another." After a long initial drag, Kulko passes the cigarette over. "But it's good of you to bite your lip. Doubtful I'd have the same presence of mind, myself."

"Doesn't matter how wrong it is if nothing's done about it." Tisiphone's eyes lift to the cigarette and edge along the hand holding it out to her, but don't raise to Kulko's face. She sneaks the ciggie out from between his fingers and tucks it into her mouth as she sits up and leans sideways into the backrest, head resting against bare, sunburned arm. Two drags, before she offers it back. Puff-puff-pass. "Doesn't matter if he's the poster child for poor promotion choices everywhere. He's my SL and my wingleader and it's my job to shut up and suck it up." Or so she's trying to hammer home to herself. Not the best aim — she mostly seems to just hammer herself down with it.

Kulko takes the cigarette back, ashing it on the broken tile floor. "It's your job to shoot toasters out the sky," he corrects. "Rollin' with the punches just comes with the territory. Soon as it stops you from doin' your job, then there's a problem."

"You'd think it was his job not to make himself look better by stepping on the faces of those required to stick near him, too, wouldn't you?" The defensive look bristles to a spot of anger, there, and Tisiphone looks away, pulling the red bandana off her head to mop at her face.

<Fade for RL.>

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