PHD #295: Uncomplicated
Summary: The CAGs of the Cerberus and Areion get closer. Things don't end as well as one might hope. (OOC Warning: This contains absolutely nothing explicit, but Stuff Happens.)
Date: 18 Dec 2041 AE
Related Logs: Pressure Points - Air Wing; Men and Machines
Cidra Baer 
CAG's Office - CEX Areion
A nice office with a couch and hatstand.
Post-Holocaust Day: #295

Cidra touched down on the Areion in her borrowed - and slightly dented - Screwtop Raptor after the encounter with the Cylons over Tauron. Now she's on lay-over there for a few hours, until someone has time to give her and Trask a lift back. Double CAP will need to be flown, but a Raptor can't be immediately spared for taxi service. She left Trask on the Areion's hangar deck to wait for an available bird and adjourned with Lieutenant Colonel Baer to his office. With the Cerberus crippled, they've got CAP rotations to discuss, after all. Among other things. He's showing her to it now.

Baer was flying as well, of course, just in a Viper today, off in another sector where the Spectres led defensive efforts. His plane seems to be unscathed and is — after proper post-flight checks, of course — left on the deck so that he might escort Cerberus' CAG through Areion's shiny corridors to his office. "A few of our Screwtops participated in the efforts down on Aerilon," he's telling her as they reach a hatch, which he unlocks and holds open for Cidra to precede him into the room, "I was lucky enough to be gifted with some of the…supplies they were able to salvage, if you'd care for a beverage. Please, have a seat." He flicks on the lights, revealing an office both larger and more comfortably-appointed than her own.

"I should keep my wits about me. I shall not have terribly much downtime when I am back on Cerberus, I do not think. As things stand." A pause and Cidra amends. "But I shall be here for a few hours yet, it seems, given the status of our birds. And we have some matters to settle. I would like a beverage." Another pause. "And perhaps we could share a cigar? I much enjoyed the one in which I partook with you on Aerilon." She takes the offer seat, taking a long look around the office. "Nicely appointed."

"Of course," Baer agrees in that smooth baritone, with a small, understanding smile, "We both have even more work ahead of us than usual, it seems. All the more reason to take a moment to settle now while we can, yes? It's always best to approach these things from a position of calm, I find." At her agreement and the request for a cigar, he smiles, touching Cidra's shoulder briefly as he passes, agreeing, "Of course. I was just about to offer." He moves through the small sitting area to a cabinet below the bookcases, bending to remove two glasses, which he pours, and a cigar, which he prepares and lights. "Here we are," he says, returning to take a seat on the short couch opposite, and offer over the liquor first. "Thank you," he replies of the office, "It's important to have a space where you can think, in jobs like ours."

"Privacy is a rare commodity on a battlestar. I think I would go quite mad without a small slice of it." Cidra's eyes go to Baer's hand as he touches her shoulder. Not that she seems displeased, and she lets him brush it without pulling away. "And calm, yes. I tell my pilots, 'Clear eyes and steady hands' in lieu of 'Good hunting' on occasion. I have found it encourages a wiser course." She takes the drink, sipping at it. Manner collected, but with an underlying gravity to it. "Please convey my respects to Major Foxley if I do not have chance to speak with her before I depart. For the losses of her personnel in those Raptors, and honors to their service. I did try to get a word with her when we landed, but we was much…occupied." Or huffed off without letting Cidra get a comment in. Perhaps that. "It is understandable."

"Well, we can't have that," Baer smiles faintly again, and then, once the cigar is glowing steadily, offers it over to Cidra. "I'll do that," he says of passing her message on to Major Foxley, another of those slim smiles tugging on his lips, "Winifred is often much…occupied," he says, a hint of amusement in his gaze despite the somewhat serious subject. His expression lapses back to grave after a beat and he nods, "Of course. Every loss is regrettable, no matter how necessary. I am sure that Tango would offer the same condolences on the loss of your pilots, were she able."

"She seems to know her business as a pilot surpassing well," Cidra says quickly. It's genuine enough. "I must admit, it has been long since I have been under someone in the air." Pause as she takes the cigar, puffing on it. "I mean, of course, in terms of command." She passes the cigar back and returns to nursing her drink. Sighing heavy. "I shall have to get the full casualty report from Broadside…that is, my Captain Matise when I return to Cerberus. He is as close to a right-hand as I have with the Vipers now that Ibrahim is gone." Another pause and clearing of her throat. "One of my former squadron leads. In any case, initial reports show Cerberus is unable to jump at least until repairs are affixed. We should double the CAP. Coordinate our efforts, so it is not so much a strain on either of our Wings."

"Winifred is an excellent pilot, of course," Baer nods easily, the agreement having the tone of fact rather than compliment; she is evocati, after all. He takes a sip of his drink, which makes it difficult to tell whether he manages to avoid smiling at Cidra's sort-of-slip or not. In any case, dark eyes sparkle faintly, and his glass is slow to be lowered, waiting until she offers back the cigar. He reaches out to take it with a brush of fingers as he adds, "Thank you," and then returns it to his lips, listening as she speaks. His posture is relaxed, comfortably at ease in this space of his, and happy enough to pay close attention to the other CAG. "We should double CAP," he agrees with a slow nod when she stops, "And coordinate our efforts. I am, as always, in favor of greater cooperation between our flights. And you know," he adds, leaning forward slightly, gesturing with the hand that has just divested itself of tumbler, "You are always welcome here, if you have need of someone to talk to. I know how isolating this job can be. There are few replacements for a strong right hand, but an equal partner is one."

Cidra looks down at Baer's hands, observing with some interest as he handles the tumbler. "Yes, indeed…" She idly reaches up a hand to straighten hair hair. Much as she can. She's fresh from the cockpit, after all, and still in her flight gear. She's not looking exceptionally polished, which she just seems to have noticed. A soft clearing of her throat, and a look up at the other CAG. "I would very much like to coordinate more than we do presently. Your Raptor network is an exceptional piece of electronic warfare deployment, though I am concerned it takes away some from our ability to defend our Vipers in the field via jamming frequencies. In any case, we should certainly run more jointly. I know you must be used to operating rather on your own…given the mission of this vessel. Or such as we know of it." There's curiosity there, and several not-quite-asked questions implied.

Baer is in his flight-suit as well, and without his trademark fedora (which hangs on a coatstand near the door) his dark hair is neatly mussed. He doesn't bother to try to straighten it, either not noticing or caring, or maybe it even looks like this intentionally. You never know, with these Areion pilots. Despite the lack of polish, there is an easy confidence to his demeanor that fills the space, from the way he leans back in his chair to the way long fingers linger as they slide around the curves of his glass. "We've spent a good deal of time refining the enhanced ECM network," he confirms with a nod, cigar offered over to the major once again, "I believe several of our techs have spoken with yours about bringing your machines into it as well. Together we could cast a very broad net, even more powerful than what you saw today." The tumbler is lifted again, the heavy base cradled absently in his palm as he sips and then smiles, "Yes, we have been used to fending for ourselves. But it has been…refreshing, to have colleagues again." His smiles grows a little wider, a degree warmer, "And more pleasant still to have met friends like you, Cidra."

"Friends, Skiron? Is that what we are?" The faintest of smiles plays across Cidra's lips, but her features are kept carefully schooled as she watches him. Her fingers caress that cigar again. Not smoking it, just idly holding it. Thoughtful. "I must admit I have enjoyed our…conversations. It is difficult at times to form…close relationships with those who fly under you. There will always be that layer of command. That knowledge that you must someday perhaps ask them to make ultimate sacrifices. It can become…complicated."

Inscrutable gaze as dark as hers is cloudy flicks to the cigar, watching it burn down in her hand for a moment as his lips curve, and one shoulder lifts in a languid shrug. "I leave that to your discretion," he demures, voice tilting towards gravelly in those lower registers. His expression near mirrors hers, thoughtful, musing as he nods his agreement. "Very true. It can be problematic to lose that distance with those you command, tempting as it might sometimes be. All the more reason to be glad of good relations with those in similar positions. Otherwise there is never any forum where we can… relax. Relieve the pressures of command."

"I am generally very good at compartmentalizing my relationships with those I command. There are occasions in which it becomes…tempting to do otherwise…" Puff. And then Cidra hands the cigar back. "…but those are of no moment now." Another of those pauses, and she sips more on her drink. Eyes going to his hands again. "Have you ever married?" The question seems plucked out of the air.

"A valuable skill," Baer agrees with a certain wryness to his smile as he adds, "One I wish more possessed." Another sip and then he leans forward to accept the return of his cigar with another brush of fingers against her palm. He holds it with absent care, puffing away for a moment after that question. "Yes," he replies, leaning forward to neatly knock the end of the stogie against an ashtray, "But we divorced almost ten years ago, now."

"Divorced?" A soft "Ah," though Cidra does not press beyond that question. For a moment it seems like she will not elaborate as to herself. But then she does. "I was widowed almost ten years ago myself. It seemed…simpler after that to not tie myself down again. It has certainly allowed me to further my career in ways it otherwise would not." A sip, and look around his office. "Same can be said for you, it seems."

"She and my daughter were killed on Picon in the attack," Baer relates with a nod. He glances down into his glass for a moment, and then back up to Cidra as she speaks. He nods again, once more in agreement, and then glances around the office with her, as if slightly amused at these trappings of success. "Indeed," he says, voice low in volume and tone both, "There is much to be said for wedding yourself to your career." And much not to be said for it as well, though he leaves that hanging in the air, unsaid.

"My husband and I never had any children." A long drink, which finishes off Cidra's glass. "I am sorry for your loss. And yes. It is…uncomplicated." She leans forward, on that note. As if to kiss him. Though she does not, quite.

"Thank you," Baer replies with a minute little nod, voice still scraping deep in his chest as he adds, "I am sorry for your loss, as well." Not for the lack of complications, however. He remains still as she leans in close, eyes lowered slightly, so that he looks at her almost through his lashes, adding another dark layer to his gaze. He moves only once she has stopped, head tilting very slightly as he eliminates the remaining distance and does, in fact, kiss her.

Cidra kisses him back, too. Deep, long and full on the lips. She closes the remaining distance between them to join him on the couch. "I need to clear my head." Said as she comes up for air, as if providing an explanation, before she kisses him again and gets to unzipping her flight suit.

If Baer is somewhat amused by that explanation, it is displayed only in the pressed curve of his lips, and that could just as easily mean any number of other things. "Always wise," he replies simply, though with definite good humor. And why not? He peels off the top half of his flight suit with ease, and then reaches for Cidra, one broad palm against her jaw as they kiss, the other slipping beneath the opened flight suit to spread across her side.

Cidra peels off her suit with a certain amount of awkwardness, but she manages not elbow the Areion CAG anywhere terribly sensitive. She's deft like that. The trousers and undershirt she's wearing beneath it are dispensed with more easily. She closes her eyes, breathing quickening. She breaks from kissing him only a moment, to inhale and move her lips down to caress his neck. "Oh, Salt…" she murmurs. Continuing to go with it, seemingly unaware she's said anything.

Baer seems unconcerned about elbows, trusting Cidra to be nimble as they undress. If the ever-smooth LT COL stumbles over anything it is his boots, which require a moment more thought than he'd really care to give them. Still, this is hardly a new problem, and its solved quickly enough. He sinks deeper into the couch, the better to draw his fellow CAG into his lap. He doesn't stop, at that murmur, but there is the faintest moment of something like hesitation, or contemplation. He glances down at the side of her head, and considers. And then says nothing.

Cidra doesn't notice Baer's moment of hesitation. She's focused, but in an entirely different way right now. And one that probably isn't particularly sensitive to her partner. But she doesn't stop. Eyes closed, murmuring "Salt, Salt, Salt" a few more times for good measure. Though she never quite seems conscious that she's speaking aloud. And if he's not going to complain, she won't notice. She doesn't linger very long over niceties. She's got a Raptor to catch, so she's very much quick and dirty about the whole thing.

Practical or just not picky, or… well, honestly, who knows what goes on in Skiron Baer's head? In any case, he does not voice any objection to being called 'Salt', nor to a lack of niceties. As she makes ready to leave he rakes a hand over his hair and kicks back on the couch, looking up to ask curiously, "Who is Salt?"

Cidra does not linger to bask in the after glow for long. Once she's finished, and has regained her senses a bit, she seems aware of what's just happened and gets dressed rather quickly. Trying to get herself zipped into her flight suit so it won't be obvious what they've been doing. She's putting on her boots when he asks. She pauses. And blinks. "Umm…what?"

Baer has not bothered with flight suit, just the clothes beneath, and he tucks his dogtags back under his shirt as he observes Cidra. "Salt," he repeats, a touch more slowly, "You mentioned the name. I was wondering who he is."

"Salt…did I…? Oh." Cidra swallows. Zipping up a bit further than she was zipped up before. Cloudy blue eyes rather wide. There's no *obvious* sign of floundering, beyond the fact that it takes her a moment to answer. Or come up with answer. "Yes. Well. This is a bit embarrassing." Pause. More wide-eyed staring at Baer. "Skiron I am…very sorry. Salt was…well, it no longer matters. He is dead and gone. And I am not sure why it comes to mind so much but…" Pause. Like she's hesitating on whether or not to actually say the thing she is thinking of saying. Ultimately she does. "…It was something in the nature of a nick-name. An…in-joke, I suppose you could call it. I mentioned earlier one of my former squadron leaders? Ibrahim Sitka? We were never…intimate in this nature of course but…you see how it would be awkward if this was…I would appreciate it if we kept this private, yes?"

Baer's dark brows shift at Cidra's stricken expression, some measure of amusement garnered either from the situation or her reaction or something. Her apology is waved away with a flick of the wrist and a wry little smile. "We are all adults here, Cidra," he says, dismissing any notion that he might be hurt by the slip. His curiosity about the explanation (and there must be some, since he did ask) is tempered by a vaguely bored air, like he's asking because he doesn't feel like moving yet and hasn't anything better to do. "I see," he replies finally, with a nod. He stands, reaching for his glass to drain the dregs of his drink and then smile as he nods, "Of course. Like I said, we're all adults. I'm hardly about to go tell tales in the locker room." He leans in to kiss her cheek, and then steps past toward his desk with a, "Good night, Cidra."

Unless otherwise stated, the content of this page is licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 License