PHD #431: Toes and Heels
PHD #431: Toes and Heels
Summary: What begins as an innocent discourse between Evandreus and Khloe about the merits (or lack thereof) of primming for oneself or a significant other, ends up in a failure of communication.
Date: 03 May 2042 AE
Related Logs: none
Evandreus Keenan Khloe Solstice 
Pilot Berths - Naval Deck - Battlestar Cerberus
The battlestar's pilots call this place home. Bunks line the walls with grey curtains to cover their sleeping areas. Lockers sit between each pair of bunks and a round metal table sits in the center, furnished with simple but comfortable steel chairs. A hatch at the rear of the room leads to a communal head.
Post-Holocaust Day: #431

Evandreus is flat on his back up in his bunk, fatigues trousers hanging loose about bare, coltish ankles, one foot planted with delicate pressure onto the ceiling of the bunk, his other leg crossed over the first such that his foot is nearly at his knee. Toes splayed like a cat about to scratch, he's finishing up a coat of pale pink paint to perfectly compliment the dull green of the trousers. Some music's playing on a set of headphones around his neck, turned up loud enough for him to hear though the headphones aren't actually on his ears, but not loud enough for most of the room to hear distinctly beyond the basics of the rhythm and tune.

Coming trundling into the berths is Khloe, her large laundry duffel slung over her shoulder. The easy part's done, which is the washing and drying. Now comes the precise folding of someone with Khloe's level of OCD. She sets the bag down with a whump by the center table and gets to work, unzipping and producing… already folded clothes. Which are getting shaken out and, you guessed it, refolded. She gets through several items when she pauses and gives a sidelong glance at Evandreus. "You're… painting your toenails. Bunny, has anyone ever asked you what the frak is wrong with you?" She asks, tone light enough so that Bunny can't mistake her for actually tearing a chunk out of his ass. Sometimes, with Khloe, it's tough to know these things.

Evandreus doesn't take his eyes off of his toenails, at first, only carefully continuing to paint as he answers in tones as careful and drawn-out as the strokes of brush on nail, "My father used to ask me that all the time." As he pulls the brush away and screws the lid back onto the bottle, he turns a chipper glance aside and tosses Khloe a wink, as if he'd only been kidding. "-I- think it's pretty, anyhow. I can do yours next, if you want."

Khloe raises an eyebrow and affects a sarcastic smirk. "It's all you, Bun," she says, continuing to work through her laundry. "I don't think I've painted my nails since, maybe, thirteen. Maybe twelve. Besides, pink isn't my color."

Evandreus reaches back to set the little bottle up with its brethren on the Bunny's shelf, and he stretches out his leg to plant the other foot on the ceiling, walking them up a few shuffling steps and then holding there, stretching out, arms flopping out to his sides. "No? Maybe more of a rosy red. Nothing firetruckish— more subtle than that. Or were you one of those girls who painted her nails green and blue and black and all of those?" he wonders.

"Yes." Khloe gets through a batch of socks and now moves on to underwear. She has nothing but regulation, military clothes - although it's doubtful anyone's surprised. "I wasn't exactly in a good crowd. It was more shocking and rebellious if you painted yourself to look like a clown," she states, clearly not looking fondly back onto her childhood. "Besides, I wear boots all the time. No point. Who's gonna see it?"

"Well, you will," Evan starts the list. "That's why it's pretty key to use a color you like," he notes, folding his arms behind his head. "And then, you know, you don't wear boots in the shower and such. People can see it in there, if they've got a particular interest in feet," he chuckles. "And if you're bunking with anyone else, at all— well. Depends on the nature of the bunking, I guess. But if there's anyone you're particularly trying to have a wicked case of prettytoes for… well, this is the stuff."

Khloe drops what she was folding. Or, rather, her hands just stop working, as her brain is trying to process how Bunny is more of a girl than she is. "First off, I don't think anyone's going to be looking at my feet in the head. Second, if they did have an interest in feet, I especially don't want them gawking at me. And lastly, if I was bunking with someone, why would they care what my toes look like?"

Evandreus lets a further chuckle out despite himself as Khloe protests not wanting to catch the attention of the toe-fanciers. "Hey, c'mon," he does revert to form, however, "You can't say that just because someone is into foot fetishism that they're… like, perverts, or something. Everyone is into -something,- after all. Just ask Boots. He's got some seriously obscure stuff in his collection." Note: not sick, twisted, or wrong. Just obscure. In Leontinia, s'all good, man. S'all good. "And I'm sure when you find that special someone to share a bunk with, he or she will be so madly smitten that you could have no toes whatsoever and it will make absolutely no difference." That said more seriously than not, in a universe where severe deformities in the wake of assaults have become more prevalent. "But." There's a but. "As long as you have some, it's an option to decorate them. It's hardly a necessity, but it might be a nice… y'know. Gesture. I-am-making-myself-pretty-for-you gestures are generally considered a standard part of courtship."

Blink. Blink blink. "All right, I'll bite -" Khloe begins, resuming folding, although she's slowed down a tic as she's actively trying to wrap her brain around this. "I can underststand, if you're into that sort of thing, trying to 'woo' someone. Or whatever." A plank of wood is probably more romantic than Khloe. "But what if that sort of thing happens without… however you said it. Making-myself-pretty-for-you. That means they're attracted to your personality, your character… qualities beyond the superficial. So does it matter at that point?" She wrinkles her nose. "Courtship. You make it sound like a pigeon walking around in circles trying to attract a mate."

"No," Evan replies, a low, patient syllable. "And really, it -should- be all about personality and character. I wouldn't like to think that I ever got into a relationship just because he or she thought I was cute." He shuffles a little, twisting his back to plant an elbow into the bedding and angle himself conversationally into the berths. "But if you're out at a bar or something, you can wear something nice to attract attention, stand out from the crowd, start a conversation. And once you're in a relationship… well. It's just fun, you know? I mean. Some people think it's fun. My boyfriend used to dress up for me all the time. Speaking of foot fetishes. I never really planted my flag in that camp, but holy shit the boy could rock a pair of heels."

Khloe drops whatever she was folding, again. But this time she moves to pick it up right away and resume her OCD folding, albeit more hastily now. "Yeah, um," are the only intelligible syllables to come out of Khloe's mouth. She seems a strange combination of embarassed and shocked, although the latter she manages to contain fairly well. She finds her words. "Bunny, really, there are things you don't need to, ah, share. About yourself. Personal details like that… I know, this is the 21st century and all that, but still."

"I'm just saying, yo," Bunny continues on. "Did I love him because he looked hot in stilettos? No. Did I appreciate that he did stuff like that, even though I have -tried- walking in those things and know firsthand that they hurt like a motherfrakker? Yah. I did. So— no, love is not toenail-polish deep, and it should never be. But if it tickles your fancy or your partner's… why not?"

Khloe clears her throat. She's almost done; she's re-folding her sweatpants now, which is an indication she's at the bottom of the bag. And yes, folding sweatpants, along imaginary seam lines. "So what you're saying is, nail polish, or heels, isn't the point. It's what the other person appreciates." Stacks of clothing in front of her, she begins the careful transfer from table to locker. Everything in its place. "I suppose I follow. Doesn't make a lot of sense to me, as my fling at Tau Garrison was pretty much an impulse thing and I'm pretty sure the guy just wanted a notch on his belt." She wrinkles her nose. "I'm really not good at the courtship thing. My relationships, as much as they have been, have typically just… happened."

Evandreus wrinkles up his own nose in a gesture sympathetic to Khloe's, forehead drawing. "Oh, hon. I'm sorry, that really sucks. Some guys…" he shakes his head as he trails off there, not saying what he thinks of 'some guys.' But he does take his feet off of the ceiling and swing them around to dangle, baby-pink toenails and all, over the edge of his bunk. "Aphrodite will strike where she strikes," he agrees. "And miss where she misses," he appends. "Sometimes it -is- best just to leave it to her… see where she takes you. I totally thought she had me all sorted out, for a second, there. But Vandy loves you more than she'll ever love me," he smiles wanly with the comment, as though resigned to the fact, at some level of peace with it. Trust in the Goddess.

The whir hiss of the hatchway sounds as the figure of Shakes enters after, closing it behind her. She tugs it closed behind her, the flightsuit half undone and showing her tanks beneath. She pauses, catching the comments about Aphrodite and clears her throat. Her eyes flicker between the two and then she is not wanting to look like she is eavesdropping, thus she makes a straight shot for her locker. She wets her lips and then tugs it open with a soft clatter. She tilts her head and turns to cast a look from over her shoulder at the last bit, stilling and then slowing as her lips part. Eyes widen a moment and the ECO looks like she might very well look ready to step over towards them.

Just when you thought it was safe to walk through the berths. At the mention of Vandenberg, at first, Khloe's eyes widen in shock. Then they harden in anger. "You shut your frakking mouth, Doe!" Khloe suddenly barks, pushing up from her last stack of carefully folded clothes, which sadly sags to the side and half-topples onto the table. Hissing through her teeth, words down to a low growl, Khloe gets right up close to Bunny. "You shut. Your frakking. Mouth. I don't care if you're comfortable with this sort of crap, but I'm not. You read me? Say nothing to no one about Vandenberg and I."

Evandreus places his hands on the edge of the bunk at his sides, drawing his legs up gingerly as if to evade a mouse on the floor, or perhaps to stop Khloe from ruining his paint job. Mouth hanging open in stunned disbelief as the Viper Jock flings herself completely off the handle at him, a few nonsense noises gurgling up from somewhere deep in his throat as he perches there with eyes wide like a deer in headlights, uncomprehending why this sudden rain of wrath has been loosed upon him. "Sh— she— said you were like a sister— shared— a bond— " he stammers out, trying to explain what it was he had actually meant to imply, before the full implications of Khloe's misunderstanding settles in, and the dawn of realization comes like a light to the terrorized Bunny's eyes… "… wait…" head tips to the side, eyes narrow a little, "Really? A— " the glottal noise precedes a little clearing of his throat, and he settles down from the way he'd been perched in mid-flight, letting this process. Sure, it stung a little when Vandy rejected him. But he's moved past it, for the better part, and so he just nods slowly. "Sure, dude. Whatever you need, okay? But— y'know, it's cool. I'm… really glad she has you. I know how much she cares about you, eh?"

As Khloe is moving with angry intent, Solstice is moving as well. The smaller woman lets her locker rest, boots off and barefeet brushing the floor. She is reaching a hand out to try to rest on Khloe's shoulder. "Poppy…" the woman is saying, perhaps not loud enough as she is trying to break them apart, rather keep Khloe back some. She doesn't know exactly what is going on but the room is tense and the ECO tries to wedge her shoulder in between them, concern writ upon her face.

"Oh my frakking gods," Khloe exasperates, holding up hands in choking formation, but she doesn't get any closer to Bunny. Bunnies are fragile, and her sensibilities get the better of her. And when Solstice adds in, she quickly and sharply jerks out from under her hand and turns away to start rescuing her toppled folded pile - with great adgitation. "Just shut up, Bunny. I hear you say anything to anyone and I will destroy you. Do not frak things up for me, or for her." The pile isn't so salvagable as she thought, and rather than fuss over it now, she scoops the whole bunch up: odds and ends, tanks, undershirts and underwear, and the like. Glancing over her shoulder - well, more like glaring - she says, "Not even a, 'whoops-I'm-Bunny-and-mean-well' frak-up. Say nothing." Leveling her gaze at Solstice, Poppy offers, "When presented with an opportunity to talk about wastes of time like toenail-painting and other pointless frakking girl stuff, just walk the other way."

"Good lord, Pops," Bunny murmurs, after a moment, "You don't need to yell at me. I'm not a -complete- frakwit, despite what you obviously think of me." He can't help but present a slice of bruised ego up there for inspection. Or maybe that's still left-over bruising from the revelation of earlier. Sticky gets a tight-lipped smile and a tic of a shoulder as if to say, 'viper jocks— what can you do?' And he shoves off of the edge of the bunk, landing on the floor with knees bending to soften the force of the impact before he stands with a clasp of Sticky's shoulder in silent greeting. "Come on, put the stuff down. I've been folding so many onesies and diapers I'm a regular laundry pro, now. I'll help, okay?" With the laundry? Or with the other situation? Outwardly the former, but in tone there could be space to read between the lines.

As Khloe jerks out from beneath her touch, Solstice is not saying a word and not trying to stop her either. She watches the woman carefully and then looks down tot eh startled Bunny. The ECO reaches down to touch his knee lightly and then straightens. The air remains tense and Shakes is clearing her throat. "Did you care for some help?" She is trying to change the topic, to move on as she starts to step towards Poppy - cautiously. Better not anger the already angry tiger. She looks over towards Bunny and gives him a soft smile. She is allowing him to go first.

"No, I'm fine," Khloe lies, managing to gather the majority of her clothes into a wad. A few quick steps and she crams it into her locker, absolutely filling a shelf with irregularly-shaped and un-maximized clothing. She must be quite embarrassed, ticked, or both, for her to ignore this last bit of OCD perfectionism."

The door to the berths open and the often shifty-eyed form of Keenan peeks inside. He has a habit of always looking like he's sneaking around, even if it's into a room that he's more than welcome in. Seeing some familiar bodies in motion, he decides that it's safe enough to head inside. Turning after he crosses the threshold, he slides the door shut and spins the wheel so that it's somewhat secure. Stretching his arms over his head with a slight yawn, he makes his way down the row of bunks to where the three are assembled. His eyes linger on Solstice for a short while before he glances between Khloe and Evandreus.

"Hey guys…" He gets out, sensing that he's entering into a conversation that's already well established. "…I uh…should I come back some other time?"

Evandreus shows Khloe his hands, as it to declare himself unarmed. "Okay…" he backs off gently, drawing his lower lip into his mouth to dampen it thoughtfully with his tongue. "You need to be mad at me, that's okay. You can be mad at me as long as you need to. But if you ever need help… laundry or otherwise… I'm totally here for you, okay, Poppy?" he posits each word as gently as a droplet of dew siding from a flowerpetal down onto a leaf. He turns and looks to Keenan, then, brightening with a flash of a grin. "It's cool, dude. I'm just… making an ass of myself," he tells him with a chuckle. "I'll catch you guys later, eh?" He'll clear out, for the nonce, and give the room time to cool.

Worrying her lower lip, she watches between Poppy and Evan before her gaze lifts to Poms. Solstice lets her gaze linger and she is moving wide between the two as Evan speaks. She is drawing close to Keenan's side and touching his arm. "Just a little ..misunderstanding.." She says and clears her throat. "Just got off CAP.." She says. She shifts, looking back from Keenan, over the two as Bunny looks ready to flee. She frowns some and lets out a long breath.

Once Poppy has the rest of her laundry shoved into her locker, she closes the door with a light 'bang' and rests her back against it, pinching the bridge of her nose with eyes clenched, and suddenly looking on the razor's edge between exhausted and ready to pop. "Sorry Poms, you'll get used to it. Nine out of ten pilots go out of their way to irritate the frak out of me. It's either a running joke, or a death pool with folks betting on the day that I finally snap and go postal." She tentatively cracks open one eye, aimed towards Solstice and Keenan.

Isn't this strange. It seems the two have settled their differences. As Solstice approaches, Keenan lifts his arm and draws her in closer as he wraps his arm around her shoulders. Leaning in to whisper something quietly to her, he turns his head to watch Evandreus leave. "No problems, Bunny, you take it easy. I'll catch you some other time." Keenan calls out and then turns to level his eyes on Poppy.

"Nine out of ten, meaning there's one that doesn't try to play glowing personality with you, gets the frak out of your way, and minds their own frakkin' business?" He pauses. "You and I don't talk much but I've heard you over the coms enough. It's cool. Do your thing."

Evandreus gives Sticky and Poms a chipper little smile, the latter a clap to the shoulder as he slips his way out.

Drawn in closer to Keenan, Solstice touches her hand to his chest lightly and pauses at the whisper. A slow nod is offered and she smiles faintly. Her gaze switches over to Bunny as he goes to leave. Her hand draws from Keenan's chest and her hand lowers a little to reach out to him slightly. The ECO looks up to Poppy, offering the woman an understanding look. "It's understood Poppy, you need space, just a little more than most." The Sagittaron says. She shifts, drawing away from Keenan to move towards her locker and get out of her flightsuit. "Did you still need help with refolding?" she asks once Bunny leaves.

"No. I'm done. I'm going to go blow off some steam." And with that, Poppy departs, too, but not so fast as to catch up with Bunny.

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