BCH #019: EVENT - The Smoking Gun
The Smoking Gun
Summary: A fire drill on the Hangar Deck averts a minor crisis.
Date: 19 BCH
Related Logs: None
Kefir Laskaris Maia Polaris 

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.

With Cidra leaving, Maia gives another friendly salute before she starts heading towards Kefir. "So how are you doing? All settled in now? I see you met the CAG. She's a nice lady."

"Yep, just met her, talked a bit about my squad," Kefir offers as Maia returns from whatever Maia was doing! "Said I can start flying some drills now, don't even have to wait for my full squad roster." He's still pretty much chilling out beside that one Viper, a hand up on the side of it, all intimate-like.

The boredom of being in drydock is beginning to get to Laskaris, who bounds up to the deck in his blues. No CAPs with the Cerberus still in drydock, so Lasher hasn't even unpacked his flightsuits yet. His eyes are set on a row of parked Vipers, each of them new Mark VIIs tucked into their respective alcoves, and he strides across the deck towards one in particular. Time to start checking these birds out.

"Ahhh, I've met a couple of other Viper jockeys. They might end up in your squad. There's an Alessandra, seems pleasant enough though she seems a bit…" and she pauses her lips for a few moments, hrmming once more. "Green. Tomboyish tendencies, but then she was giggling almost in a manic state at the chapel. Oddest thing, that." she says with a soft shrug of her shoulder. "Then there's a Laskaris. He seems like an all right fellow. Only met him once though." she says before she spies the pilot and gives him a friendly wave. And look, she's not in knuckledragger orange, she's in her flight suit.

"I met her the other day," Kefir confirms with a simple little nod. "The other name isn't familiar. The Major said she'd forward me over the listing, but… well, that was just a few minutes ago that I saw her, and it looked like she was being dragged off to a big mountain of paperwork and headaches. So it might be a little while. Still, twenty to a squad, so there are many more yet to come." That itself seems to throw his mind wandering. "As soon as I have at least a handful, however, we're going to get down to business."

As Laskaris traverses the hangar deck, he gives Maia an informal salute, touching his index finger to his brow. His eyes briefly sweep over a Viper before he turns to Kefir with a raised eyebrow. The pair of them are close enough to be within conversation range, but just far enough that Laskaris can't quite make out things like rank insignia. Kefir gets a browraise. "That other name's standing right over here," he says dryly. His arms fold over his chest. "What sort of business do you think we can do, sitting in drydock with a handful of pilots? Won't even be runnin' frakkin CAPs until we're at least closer t' commissioning."

"Practice exercises or do something impressive to show the civilian delegation what you all can do? Some neat tricks would be always impressive to the civvies." Maia suggests as she bows her head towards Laskaris as he heads towards them. "I mean we can't do any real tricks in the Raptors, but the Vipers should be quite impressive I imagine."

A voice joins them, if not a presence, and Kefir glances from Maia and the bird over to see who, exactlly, the words belong to. "We're perfectly capable of launching," he points out. "The CAPs will have to wait on what the Major wants to do with them, I suppose, since they're by necessity multi-squad the way thins are set up here. But I plan to start drills right away." Apparently, Maia says the rest for him in terms of the 'why' part, so he just nods along with that.

Laskaris steps around the Viper Kefir and Maia are standing next to; he finally gets a look at the insignia on Kefir's collar. His lips purse slightly, but other than that he seems nonplussed. "Launching, yah. But CAPs seem a little pointless at this point, I'd say. Don't get me wrong, mind, I'd like something to do, but I also don't like wasting my time." He nods to Maia. "Civilians do like t' see pilots put on a show, though. Wouldn't want them to think we're wasting all this money sitting on our fat duffs, eh?"

"And these are civilians that /need/ to be impressed. If they aren't we might get funding taken away from us!" Maia says sounding slightly worried. That would mean lower salaries and whatnot. She has a lifestyle to maintain afterall. "But it seems one of the squad leaders has that in mind already." and she nods at Kefir.

"They seem to have about as much point, or lack of point, as a CAP anywhere, wouldn't you say?" Kefir asks, glancing thoughtfully at the newecomer as he comes around to join them. "Since they're about readiness and not getting caught with your pants down. But we'll have to wait on the Major, in any case. I know my squad is still rather thin, and I can only imagine its the same thing with the Raptors." Briefly, he gives Maia a more questioning look, to see if she might confirm or deny that suspicion. "And it won't just be for the show. Keep in mind, we're scheduled for war games after the commissioning ceremony. Best, I am thinking, that we do not start flying together only just before they begin."

"If you joined the service for the money, Lieutenant, you came t' the wrong place," Laskaris says to the woman with a thin smile. He turns back to Kefir. "I wouldn't say, actually," he says mildly, his arms folding over his chest. "I don't see how sitting in a cockpit for four hours flying in circles contributes a bloody thing t' readiness. Besides, you've got half a dozen operational battlestars out there conducting CAPs already, not to mention the station's own fighter garrison and the squadrons stationed down on the planet. If you're planning t' do something actually productive, now, that's one thing, but why crowd the spacelanes for the sake of a pointless gesture?"

The pilots aren't alone in this cavernous room, though they've formed a little conversational bubble that permits them to ignore the few deckhands milling about. And so it is that the usual activity in the Port Hangar Deck goes unnoticed: there, a trio of burly specialists is pulling a Viper into position; and there, an oil-stained technician is fiddling with the innards of a Raptor's stripped-down wing; and there, two petty officers are engaged in a loud and somewhat crude conversation about the relative merits of said oil-stained technician's … aft compartments. In other words, all's well in Fighterland Cerberus

Until, with a series of piercing whoops, the battlestar's klaxons begin to blare. Pulsing lights illuminate the ceiling, painting them an ominous flashing crimson, and like one the orange-clad deckhands shake their heads. "Frak," one mutters, looking altogether bored as he moves off from the Viper he's been wrangling and lopes over to the com on the wall. "Drill. Fire, fire, fire. Fire in Compartment C." The announcement is delivered with surpassing laziness; then, blue eyes focus on the pilots standing nearby. "Ball's in your court, boys. And girl."

A hearty laugh escapes from her lips as she gives Laskaris a friendly wink. Maia's about to give a quippy answer when there's the firedrill. She scrunches up her nose as she looks towards the deckhand with a bit of an annoyed glare. Still it's a drill and there's a job to be done. She looks towards Kefir, "Well Captain, looks like you're in charge." she says matter of factly as she starts motioning towards the dual stairways. "Evacuation protocols in place, all unnecessary personnel head to the stairway, post haste." she says firmly and resolutely with a sage nod.

"And every one of those CAPs, with the exception of a few above, say, Sagittarus or near the armistice line, is equally boring. So I am not sure why one is different from the other." The shorter man smiles a bit, and then suggests, "Plus, if you joined the service -not- to sit in the cockpit of your Viper and fly around in space for hours, you might -also- be in the wrong place, I am thinking." Of course, the alarms come as a bit of a surprise then, and his eyes swivel up to note the spinning lights of doom. They lower after, to the one who addressed him, back briefly to Maia, and then to the first again. "By the books," he intones simply. "Get your damage control teams together and to their equipment." And then, pausing, he looks around a bit, searching out something on the wall. To to the other officers with him, he intones simply: "Come." That said, he leads the way over to one of the fire stations, and opens it up. "We will help distribute breathing equipment, and then assist."

"Frak's sake, Lieutenant, ya don't evacuate the deck for a fire drill," Laskaris sighs. Kefir gets a narrow eyed look before he turns to the nearest deckhand. "Cut power to this compartment," he orders the knuckledragger, "and alert Sickbay to prepare to recieve simulated casualties." His arms back at his sides, he quickly strides over to the nearest equipment locker.

"What this idiot said," snorts the blue-eyed specialist, jerking his palm in Laskaris' direction. "Frak, girl, you ain't in high school no more. You leave, who the frak fights the fire?" And indeed, it's not like they have the choice of leaving anyway, given that the compartment's blast doors are currently in the process of closing. The screech of grinding gears precedes the thunderous clang of metal on metal — and right when that happens, he gives the signal to the woman on the Raptor, who bounds towards a wall panel and cuts all electrical power to the hangar. "Torches!" she yells, flicking on the battery-powered lamp on her belt. "Clock's a-ticking!"

The other deckhands haven't been idle. The petty officers are moving as one to get to the hoses, heavy boots pounding on the ground — twice for every one whoop. Their unoccupied subordinates are a half-step behind, spooling out said hoses with remarkable alacrity. "Good to go over here!" The leader's voice is loud and exasperated. "Forget the masks and get the third!"

"I said unnecessary personnel. It's standard procedure. What if there were civvies on deck, they'd have to leave." Maia says with a soft sigh, and just shakes her head before facepalming once more before peering towards the Captain. Let's do this then." she says matter of factly while looking towards Kefir to lead the way.

Kefir chooses to help with handing out breathing equipment precisely because it seems likely that the deckhands will be well trained in these proceedures. It is certainly a nice thing that they prove that is exactly the case. "Get these to anyone who's too busy to grab one themself," he directs, grabbing the devices from the locker and passing them back - to Maia, Laskaris, or anyone else who should happen to pass the vicinity. Then he looks for anyone else in need. "Watch for the hoses," he warns on his way, and then calls over to the deckhand, "Shorthanded anywhere?

Laskaris mutters a muffled curse, but doesn't say anything further as he hands out breathmasks and extinguishers from the locker to several deckhands. "Come on, you lot, no shoving," he utters gruffly. Once everything's passed out, he moves away, continuing to stay on the periphery as he watches the deck crew go about their business. His eyes sweep over a row of pressure valves, making sure everything's where it should be.

The specialist in charge flicks his lamp Maia's way, his superior grin fading not in the least. "You said!" he says, following the pilots along while making a show of checking the watch on his wrist. "Don't see no unnecessary personnel today. Maybe cuz it's dark as balls, though." The banter, it seems, has woken him up. He's even helpful enough to grab one of the masks from Kefir's hands, his torch bobbing up and down as he runs to deliver it to the crew on Hose One.

As for the Captain's question? "Hose three," shouts an eager petty officer, mask in hand. "Where Hannah's at. Look for the WIDE LOAD sign."

"Frak you," is the woman's snippy reply. "Need someone to unspool for me." Like the other two crews are doing, brown hoses snaking towards the partly-disassembled Raptor near the starboard side of the hangar. "T plus thirty seconds! Shit's burning, guys."

To Maia and Kefir: As the deckhands' flashlights cut through the dim room, you think you notice something else: a thin plume of, well, something that's rising up from the engine of a parked Viper. Whatever it is, you only see it for a second or so. Then, the Viper is plunged into darkness when the techs turn their attention to the Raptor in question.

Maia is already annoyed with the deckhands. She looks towards the specialist with the lamp. "No, there are no unnecessary personnel, but it is a drill. It's pretend." she says firmly and resolutely as she looks around for another lamp. Seeing that people are okay for now, she looks towards the others. "I think… I saw something. Just got to check it out real quick." There's a bad feeling in her gut and she follows it once she has a lamp and heads towards one of the parked Vipers.

When the petty officer points him at a place that needs hands, Kefir glances around, making things out as best he can by the dim lighting they have available. He's secured his mask now as well. And then, apparently whatever catches Maia's attention gets his as well, he looks that way once, then back and to Laskaris, "Give the miss a hand with her hose," he directs, before trying to catch the petty officer again. However, he judges the man to be bogged down with his own crew, and so he looks around, grabs a free extinguisher, and starts off in the direction Maia went. Not, though, without calling back, "If you've got someone spare we might need a hand in this direction."

"Right," Laskaris responds crisply. He trots in the direction of Specialist Wide Load over there, quickly securing his mask before he pulls up next to the deckhand. He grabs the handle on the spool of hose, turning it quickly to give the deck specialist some slack to do her work. Whatever it is Kefir and Maia spotted, Lasher doesn't see, occupied as he is.

"Pretend?" The obnoxious blue-eyed specialist trots along, chucking another mask to the men on Hose Two while he's at it. "Gods damn, girl. I ain't got some fancy Pee-Aitch-Dee or some shit like you Viper sticks, but I ain't talk to no pretend people when — " His yammering only stops when he reaches the manual hose release, transformed into a grunt as he works the wheel with Laskaris. "Know her?" he asks the man. "Feisty."

"You boys want to quite chattering and run me out that hose?" Specialist Wide Load is Not Amused. "Chief's gonna be on our asses if we don't get this done." And fortunately, it is, in fact, getting done. The DC crews on Hoses One and Two have reached the Raptor and are unloading fake foam onto the fake fire — represented by blinking LEDs attached to the wing. How quaint. Hose Three soon follows, accompanied by hissing: helpful sound effects from the blue-eyed deckie.

And as for our two intrepid explorers? Whatever they saw, they don't see any longer, not even with the benefit of Maia's light. The Viper looks like any other Mark VII, except this one's brand new: she doesn't look like she's even seen the outside of a hangar. Even her nacelle is free of the usual black powder that dusts engines like this.

Where was that odd sight she saw. She continues to glance around a bit with her lamp, peering around until she spies the new Mark VII. It's brand spanking new as well as she hrmms and purses her lips before staring at the engine. She looks towards the Captain. "Help me with this one." she says, covering her nose for a few moments as she coughs as she starts to open it up wanting to get to the engine.

"I'm going to need knuckledraggers here. Now." she says, her tone a bit more authoritative. "This is not part of the drill." she says firmly and resolutely. There's a bit of urgency to her tone.

Kefir saw it too, so even if he can't see anything now, he's quite inclined to help Maia out. Even the chance of a real problem is more important than a drill, and it seems like things are 'getting done' around the rest of the hangar anyway. Rather than worrying about giving any more orders, he climbs up to join her, and assists as best he can in getting the thing open to have a look.

At the sound of Maia's voice, Laskaris raises his head curiously, looking over towards the Viper in question. "A little," is his only answer to the blue-eyed specialist's question. There's a look at the impatient Specialist Wide Load, and then Lasher returns his attention to cranking the spool to let out more hose. "Cool your jets, Specialist, it's coming." The two officers seem to have whatever the problem is in hand, for the moment, so he simply focuses his attention on the task he was given. When the first specialist starts making mouth noises, Laskaris gives him a skeptical look. "Really?" he asks the man drolly.

"T-plus-sixty-one-point-four," announces Hannah, when at last the little LED blinks off. "Shit, guys. That thing was carrying rockets, we'd all be dead." She whips off the mask from her large and sweaty face, chucking it to the ground as she moves to pack up the hoses. "Somebody get the damn track lights on so I can write the damn report — and kill those horns?" Because the alarms are still blaring, now.

"Minute and one," says Specialist Blue Eyes, grinning as he elbows Laskaris in the side. "You frakking fatass. Run faster and we do this in a minute flat." Yeah: when he talks, he's a lot more annoying than when he's merely hissing.

As for the Viper in question, it's rather difficult to disassemble an entire engine just like that — but climbing up on the wing is enough to tell them that something's wrong. A second or two after Kefir gets up there, the source of whatever they saw becomes absolutely clear — and, perhaps mindful of the sudden sulphurous stench that greets them when they get up there, the two of them manage to jump off the wing just before a crackle of electricity arcs up from the nacelle. That would have been a fun injury to explain to the CMO.

"You all right down there?" It's the eager PO from before, his mask dangling from his hand. "Not a good idea to climb aboard one of these bad boys, no sir-ree — but boy am I glad you did."

Lightning arcs from the wing as there's a loud yelp, a scream rather as Maia dives from the wing onto the ground just in time "The FRAK!" she calls out, landing with a loud thud onto her stomach. She scrambles onto her feet and looks over the ship, trying to assess the cause. "Captain Abbascia and I were almost deep fried." she says looking around for whatever tools are necessary to try to fix the problem. She still scrunches up her nose, getting use to the awful stench of sulfur. There's a deep breath.

"There's a ruptured RCS point here. The hypergolic assembly was jostled loose during the viper and there was a chemical reaction that nearly killed us. That was the source of the plum of smoke earlier." she says firmly and resolutely, her voice completely calm, but annoyed. "If we didn't see it, the entire tail end of the Viper would've exploded!" she says, still calling out for more knuckledraggers. "One of you find Captain Hellicon right away." she says with a sage nod.

Kefir gets up there after her, and the way he's helping, its harder to get a view at what Maia is looking at - rather he holds one of the engine access pannels open for her, so he's just peering over the top of it. Well, he is… until that crackle sends him shooting off the wing so fast its not clear it actually missed him. It -did-, but nevertheless, boy does he scramble. "Who pissed in Zeus' cereal?" he asks, looking up from the pile he lands in, immediately putting a hand to one side of his thigh. The flight suit is padded at least, but its still a long way down and a hard fall.

Specialist Blue Eyes' manner is infectious; the normally dour Laskaris has to fight to subdue a snort and grin of amusement. That fades, though, as he hears the commotion from the Viper. Stepping back from the hose with a start, he lopes over to the parked and smoking ship as Kefir and Maia haul themselves to their feet. It takes him a moment to see the problem, but there it is, just as Maia'd said. "Holy frak," he murmurs. "Well, I'm definitely not going t' want that blighter," he mutters sardonically of the Viper.

"Frakking explosive," the blue-eyed specialist agrees, elbowing Laskaris again before jogging over to where the two bodies have hit the deck — for indeed, the sound of sparks had been drowned out entirely by the alarms, alarms that only now fall silent. "Girl can spit that techy lingo." A toothy grin spreads across his face as he cocks his head, now visible as the ceiling lights finally turn on. "All she needs is some of that bouncy plastic shit, Pee-Oh, eh?" His burly hands form two bulges on his chest to make his point somewhat clearer, in case it wasn't already.

"Can it, Kamen," says the good-natured PO. "Or better yet, get me some of those really thick gloves and a whatcha-call-it, size three. Hannah, you get to tell the Chief. Only one of us who hasn't pissed him off lately."

"Good news or bad news first?" she asks, wiping sweat from her heavyset features.

"Your ass," the PO advises pleasantly. "Your call. And make sure to tell him, also, that the pilots weren't useless, yeah? Even the one who seemed to think step one was to get the hell out of dodge."

And just like that, the day's minor crisis is averted.

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