PHD #096: EVENT - Rex Mortuus Est
Rex Mortuus Est
Summary: Diu vivat rex.
Date: 2 Jun 2041 AE
Related Logs: Continued from The Public Weal.
Abbot Tillman Alessandra Gabrieli Madilyn Constin Panos NPC Polaris 
Corridor — Deck 9 — Battlestar Cerberus
The floorplating along the corridors of the Cerberus are standard military. Their forged steel plates are welded seamlessly together to run nearly the entire length of each hallway. The hallways themselves are the typical load-bearing structural design of the angled quadrilateral. Oxygen scrubbers and lighting recesses are found at nearly perfect intervals throughout the angled passageways.
Post-Holocaust Day: #96

Abbot proceeds willingly, willfully, pulling Constin forward as much as Constin pushes. Not that anybody can recognize him as the admiral — for quick-thinking Panos has reached for the rank pins at the man's collar and torn them off for himself, shoving them into his pocket to avoid a spectacle — ha. But even as the group hustles down the long A-frame corridors, shoving worried-looking crewmen to the wall, the sound of gunfire can already be heard — the rat-tat-tat of automatic rifle fire echoing loudly in the stairwell a few twists and turns ahead.

Tillman slows at the sound of gunfire and motions for Panos to take point. He glances behind him during the pause and looks to Madilyn. "Major. Turn your radios over to Tac2. I need to phone home." He then looks back forward as he takes quick cover behind a crate and waits for the hand-off. That gun is still up and ready. The safety gets a flick off. Shoulda gone to the range more.

"I guess we should stay together," Allie drones emotionlessly. The click of Tillman's pistol being unsaftied prompts her to do the same, her own now held up instead of towards the floor like it had been just moments before. "Bet you twenty cubits I'll get shot in the you-know-whats again," she then quips dryly, a joke which…well, it doesn't sound like a joke despite why it was said. As far as anyone else knows, she's dead serious.

The radio on her belt is pulled free, and the dial switched over to Tac2. "Here," Madilyn calls out, tossing the thing across the hall to Tillman. Without having to worry about the radio, Madilyn is free to take her pistol in both hands, tightly. She nestles her back up against the wall, cradling the pistol near her cheek. Her body language says she's ready to pivot and fire if she has to, even against her own Marines.

"Cut the chatter, sir," is Constin's flat response to Allie's joke. There's no laughing in the CMC, it seems. The marine forces Michael to a stop, as Till man slows, and Panos is waved forward. "Move careful, Private," he instructs the skinny kid.

Panos nods once before ranging forward, body hugging the walls of the ship, rifle held close to his body as he hits the corner. Head peers out into the corridor, which winds left at a sixty-degree angle from the straight and easy — and then, almost instantly, he's pulling it back, teeth showing in just the barest of a grin as he dives for cover, three bullets tearing out of his rifle at the first of four men making themselves visible near crates behind which they've dove. "Yo," he says unnecessarily. "Contact!"

As for Rover Five? Their weapons, too, are leveled, muzzles already flashing as they take their shots. "Drop the guy on the admiral!" calls the sergeant in charge, his grizzled face twisted into a snarl. "Woodward, frag when he's clear!"

Gabrieli gets around the corner from the hatch right at the wrong second. He was headed for the stairwell, ready to rush down to engineering to do damage control — no puns intended — on his people as this ruckus broke out. But just as he comes into the clear of the hallway…there's people. With guns. He kids, but doesn't quite have the second needed to duck. "Oh, /frak/ me."

Tillman glances to Allie with the remark but doesn't say anything. Probably meant as a joke but he's too tense for it to really laugh, even if he might otherwise. "I'm with you guys until we hit Frame Eighteen. Then I'm on my own to CIC." He takes the radio from Madilyn and cues it up just as gunfire rings out. He lets off the PTT and looks to Constin: "Get Maragos up here! Now! Flank them!" He then cues the mike one more time after returning fire…

Constin doesn't curse as the shooting starts. His first action is to force Michael down and get the Admiral out of the line of fire, stuffing the CO facedown behind a crate before following Abbot. He takes as much cover as he can while shielding the prisoner, hollering into his wireless, "Takedown Two, Constin- under fire in corridor Able Delta seven, repeat- Able Delta seven!"

Cover is blissfully reachable now instead of later, Alessandra's luck holding out in that regards. One of the opposing forces is aimed for and then she takes her shot, aiming for their left leg since the intention is not to kill but rather get as many of the frakkers out of the picture as she possibly can.

[TAC2] (from "XO" Tillman) Gunfire rattles in the background. "CIC, this is the XO! We have a mutiny underway by members of the Marines and potentially Navy. Have the Office of the Watch Get on the goddamns pager and tell all compartments to report gunfire! Get me a report!"

From being pressed against the bulkhead to sliding forward and taking cover behind a stack of crates, Madilyn uses those few seconds to assess the situation. Four Marines, pressing forward, standard MP outfit, controlled burst fire. It's like they were trained well or something. She looks back to make sure Constin has the prisoner under control before she sneaks up enough to attempt to lay a shot in the chest of an approaching Marine, where the vest will stop it, but it should hurt a whole frakkin' lot.

[TAC2] Polaris says, "Constin, Ormann here — " Cadmus Maragos' second, who's already swapped to the other channel. "Taking heavy fire here on Six-Deck but we've got support from Hub. Looks like they think Rover Five's as frakking crazy as — GAS, man, throw it, throw it — " He snorts with tense laughter. "We'll have the path clear for if you can get to the stairwell."

"Get the frak out of the way!" the sergeant screams, regret somehow making itself known as he sees Gabrieli get popped three ways from Sunday. "Bern, call Medical — this is some crazy shit — " And then he's saying nothing at all when he feels a bullet bounce off his helmet before embedding itself in the wall. "Take down the guy on the admiral now!"

The admiral who, now that he's hearing what's happening, is no longer going gently into that good night. He attempts to wriggle free from Constin's grasp, muscles flexing beneath that pin-less uniform…

[TAC1] "Crash" Michael says, "Medical, this is Bern, we have contact with the traitors and men are down, say again, men are down!"

Tillman just got his radio call off when a bullet clips his uniform and he settles back against the wall with a light 'Oomph'. He glances down to the graze and curses. "Constin? Please frag those frakkers," he growls just over the din of gunfire. Now ya just gone dun pissed him off. The XO tilts his gun sideways over the cover and squeezes off an aimed round. "Cavanaugh! Pin the Admiral with your knee if you have to!"

Constin's words into the wireless are pre-empted by a glancing rifle round which skips off the collar of his bodyarmor. "G-aagh- *cough* Ormann, Constin. Ah copy that- Tell Hub to divert any unengaged personnel to mah position-" Words are cut off again as he redirects his attention to pressing Michael's forehead harder into the deck. "Set still, sir." Tillman's call turns his eye toward Madilyn.

Alessandra sees the errs of her ways when thinking that they're not supposed to kill anyone, the realization coming after her first shot is wasted when it ricochets off of the very crate she's ducked behind. Damn cover is making it difficult for the non-groundpounder. "Frakkers…" Second verse is the same as the first in that she's aiming for the same guy but this time she aims to kill, the barrel of her Five-seveN leveled right for the asshole's skull.

"Corporal…you have my permission to knock the Admiral the frak out, and we'll drag his ass. I'm tired of frakkin' with this!" Then, over the container. "BERN. Godsdamnit, this is the Major. Stand down NOW! You were told to belay weapons free!" After she fires, she drops back behind cover, back pressed to the container. When she fires, she spins, gets the pistol over the lip of the container, and fires off a quick round.

Gabrieli hears the gunshots about a split second after three slugs pepper his body from collar to belt, blood spraying a thick mist from the front of his uniform. His knees collapse immediately, slamming his shoulder and back into the wall beside him, and dumping him like a ragdoll onto his hip and one elbow. For a second everything else slows down as he just tries to /breathe/ through the sudden heat choking his chest, pain not even filtering into the equation just yet. Then the sound of the continuing firefight breaks through.

[TAC2] Constin says, "Hub, Constin. Taking heavy fire in corridor Alpha Delta Seven. Casualties confirmed, request support Asap. Repeat, Corridor Alpha Delta Seven, under fire."

[TAC2] Madilyn says, "Corporal…you have my permission to knock the Admiral the frak out, and we'll drag his ass. I'm tired of frakkin' with this! *There's some shuffling, for cover, a change in directionality of the next phrase.* BERN. Godsdamnit, this is the Major. Stand down NOW! You were told to belay weapons free!"

Constin grits his teeth, punctuation his command to 'Set still, sir', with a solid fist as bullets scream into the hull and crates in front of him.

<FS3> Opposed Roll — Constin:Melee vs Michael:Melee
< Constin: Good Success Michael: Success
< Net Result: Constin wins.

Down goes the sergeant, blood bubbling up from his left arm as he blacks out from unexpected pain; down goes his second, smashed in by the same. Only the two privates remain, now, just one of which shoots — the second of whom, trembling, now rises up from behind cover, his rifle slung by his chest — with a grenade held in one shaking fist while his friend sprays fire at the group before him…

"Drop the admiral," calls the young fellow — Woodward, if Rover Five wasn't lying when he ordered him to prep that frag. "Drop the admiral or I throw this thing!"

Tillman's shot strikes home and he ducks back down quickly as automatic fire sprays all around them. A spark bounces off his face and he jerks to the side. He glances at the crate before lifting his gun once more for another shot. "You throw that thing and you will kill the Admiral, son! And you better hope we don't throw one right back. Then we're all screwed! There's more on the way here, now! You boys are both dead unless you drop your arms! Keep resisting and that option is off the table!"

"Ah'm pretty sure ah just dropped him, Private," Constin calls back at the grenadier. "You have been ordered to stand down by Hub, and your superior officers. Do not frak this up, Private!" The big corporal pulls the frag grenade off his own belt as he speaks.

Gabrieli can barely breathe, a bubble of blood bursting onto the corner of his mouth. He's dimly aware of the pool of his own blood that he's lying in, soaking his elbow and the side of his leg. "Don't…" Not that anyone can hear him, but it doesn't quite register that his voice isn't working. "Hit the chapel…don't…"

As sad as it may be, the Marines still drop to the deck. They were told, and they ignored instructions. "Woodward…put that godsdamned thing down. We no more want this than you. You have no idea of the context here boy. There's bigger things in motion, reports and evidence kept secret for this very reason. Not every private is privy to this information!" Madilyn attempts to reason with the boy, even before popping up and attempting to knock him in the chest with a round.

Gabrieli's voice catches Alessandra's attention and she turns to look at him but her attention darts back to the last few men who oppose them, her body tensing when she sees the grenade. "Oh…" she manages to get out before falling quiet. This just might hurt.

Woodward wavers, green eyes staring at Tillman when the XO calls out, throat bobbing up and down as sweat drips down his bare skin. Gaze flashes over to his partner as time seems to slow — and then, nodding, he sets his teeth, upturned face looking directly at the man who would be admiral — smiling, ever smiling, as Akhlys of the death-mist who clouds over eyes before death descends upon his bullet-riddled body —

Now, the drop of a pin, bouncing off one tip, hitting the other —

Now, the sound of bullets shrieking out towards brave Constin, slashing into flesh —

And now the deafening explosion that rattles the very corridor itself when Woodward lets the grenade fall to the floor, resting on top of his wounded sergeant as he smiles and smiles and smiles while paint peels and crates fly and incandescent fire is set alight in the mortal flesh of four righteous men —

And, holding in guts spilling out from his shredded torso, the private gasps out four words with his dying breath, whisper cutting through the sudden silence —

"This is on you."

"Don't you frakkin-!" Tillman hears the grenade drop. "FRAG!" he bellows at the top of his lungs. "DOWN!" He reaches over his head and rides out the blast as shit just flies everywhere. The voice from the other end of the hallway has barely finished croaking when the XO yells again. "Cavanaugh! Secure their weapons! GodsDAMNIT!!" He slams a fist against the wall before picking up the radio.

[TAC2] Polaris says, "This is — " Gasp, wheeze. "This is Ormann. Hub is — " More wheezing. "Hub is secure, say again, Hub is secure. No reports of resistance across the ship. Looks like we've got things contained."

[TAC2] "XO" Tillman says, "Medical! XO! We need multiple teams to the Security Hub and my location! Get everyone! Motherfr-"

Constin takes a burst of bullets off the helmet, the impact snapping his head back, and starting a flow of blood running down his face from under the frakked up helmet from a scalp wound. The impact also broke apart the incoming bullet, sending a sliver of led down the side of his neck. The blast of the grenade draws a peeked look over the crate, before grabbing hold of the unconscious Abbot with his unhurt hand, hefting the weight up to bea on his left shoulder. A grunt through clenched teeth. "En route to Hub, sir!" he barks. Adrenaline is a helluva thing.

Turning quickly as she sees the pin hit the deck, Alessandra does the only thing she can think to do, that being throwing hreself over the fallen ChEng, her arms curling around his head while her own's is buried under the crook of those same limbs.

"No…" This is the last word Gabrieli can say, scratched out in some very long second between the time the man lets go of the grenade and the time it hits the floor. He hears the boom but doesn't see it, his head bumping the floor as his shoulder finally slouches all the way to the ground, leaving a smear of blood on the wall behind him. A nice bloody body pillow for Alessandra, eyes closed and pulse thready at his throat.

Oh. Oh no. Don't do it, Madilyn thinks. It's wishful thinking though, and she watches him as if it were in slow motion. After firing a round, she pulls back behind cover and curls up as much as possible, even putting her hands over her ears. When the four are confirmed to be down, she's up, surging forward. First, four rifles are kicked from their hands, usable or not; pistols are pulled from holsters. Safeties are applied to all of them, rounds expelled from the chamber, and magazines removed. "Weapons secure. Corporal…help me with the Admiral. Lieutenant, stay here until medical arrives. Major…well, isn't it time for you to split?"

So it is they go — Constin with the unconscious admiral held beneath his arm, the man's head still hooded, the man's collar still bare. Madilyn and Panos are right behind him, their footsteps pounding heavily up the central stairwell as they make their way to security, received by their expressionless comrades who've locked down the corridor to Cadmus, Ormann, and — most importantly of all — the brig, where their valuable cargo is cuffed, chained, and emplaced behind bars.

As they leave, the medics come, drilled so well by that hard teacher experience, stretches at the ready. Alessandra is pushed aside as they lever him up and onto the plank, shouting "Make a hole!" all the while. "Gotta treat that now," they advise, gesturing to his still-bleeding abdomen that's turned his uniform into shreds of red —

And when the Marines reach the Hub, they find the wreckage of battle — the cries of wounded men; the smell of acrid gas; the flicker of broken lights — for it's as the wise man said: there shall always come a time when the public weal requires that men betray and lie and massacre. No wonder, then, that to greet the Marines upon the chaining of the admiral is a single blonde sergeant holding a slip of paper she hands over without a word. The ship is yours, it says, and below that, in her furious crimson capitals:


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