S1:Ep4 - You're NoBody 'Till SomeBody Loves You

Started by Lomari, February 07, 2020, 02:27:33 PM


Previously on The Darling...

"That went about as smoothly as it could have," came the voice from the other section of the train, its owner making their way through the residual fog into their car. Geraldine Price emerged from the haze; her own gun held at the ready although she seemed pretty relaxed given the situation. It might've been cockiness, to the untrained observer, but to those that knew better, it was a sheer confidence in the fact that she could put down everyone in this train without breaking a sweat and sleep well that night to boot.

"Was surprised to get your call, Barna-baby,"she told him, a smirk pulling at one corner of her lips as she cocked her hip to the side and looked down at those handcuffed with an amused grin and quirk of a brow. "But I gotta admit, I don't hate what I'm seein' here," the woman continued, nodding her chin toward her men and watching them tug Rian away from Abe and Co to set him on his feet beside Barn and Mattie, who they also pulled to her feet, although the Feds left all but Barnaby still cuffed. Just in case.

Charity ~ Melody ~ Tabitha

Darling ~ Iscariot

Barnaby Goodweather

Geraldine Price. Barnaby remembered the last time he'd seen her, aside from the covert cortex call he'd made in between talking to Rian and setting the plan in motion. Close to ten years ago, now. Lifetime ago. They had met on  Pelorum, as unlikely a place for Barnaby to be as there likely was in the 'verse. Tricky O'Doyle, his second-in-command at the time, had a variety of warrants out under his name (The Goodweathers weren't known for their background checks) and Geraldine had used Barnaby to get close to Trick. You see Geraldine Price was a Federal Agent and was the one person who Barnaby knew he could call when he needed someone arrested. She'd made her move on Barnaby after he'd been drinking, there was a whirlwind, quickie rent-a-chapel type marriage and when he brought her back to the ship Geraldine didn't wait long to drop the act. "Hey Gerrie." Even after all that, Barnaby still blushed when he saw her.

"Rian, I think I mighta mentioned Gerrie. She's the, erm, Federal." He said, still out of breath, his head a little light but feeling better. Barnaby glanced at Abernathy, but not too hard, for fear the other man might look back and somehow do something Barnaby couldn't even imagine. He got the willies just thinking about it. Even though the act of it worried him, Barnaby was glad Rian had come down to help, even if they maybe didn't need it. Barnaby was well and truly done with the kind of work, he didn't have the stomach for it. He knew his brother-in-law did, and that made him feel a little better about the whole thing. Especially now that it was over. "Alright. So deal's a deal then. Where's Mona?"
Dialogue Color - LightBlue

Rian Carpenter

Rian smirked at seeing one of Barnaby's ex-wives. It was the first time he'd actually gotten to meet one of them in person. The circumstances made it all the funnier to him. Sure he'd just outed himself to a super crook who turned out to already be in touch with his father. But Rian figured that he was probably blown the moment Abe followed them out of that meeting. The business of his somewhat false identity could wait.

"It's an honor to finally meet you, Gerrie. I'd shake your hand but ..."

He rattled his cuffs behind his back and shrugged his shoulders.

"What you gonna do?"

The cap got right to it, and didn't give Rian any opportunity to crack any cop jokes, and he followed suit right in lock step. What about Mona? The younger man thought. His face shifted and he simply followed Goodweather's interrogative with a short:

"Yeah... 'bout that?"

The Darling was out the beagles, their payday, and so far one XO. They were doing the right thing and deserved something close to a win. Though he was already pushing his luck for the day with one fresh bullet wound in his torso to remind him of that.

Mattie Rooney

Location: Train

While the atmosphere inside the train car grew lighter and her crewmates' demeanor turned downright jovial, Mattie's expression darkened. Not considerably; just a slight narrowing of her eyes and clenching of her jaw. That the Captain knew this Fed -- perhaps even intimately by the sound of it -- made her stomach tighten. That Rian could jump on board with their conversation so casually added insult to the injury. Clearly he was not as out of the loop as she was. She felt oddly betrayed.

Mattie let Barnaby and Rian do the talking, content to marinade in her sullen silence for now. She could hold her tongue and refrain from snarking until the Darling got their XO back if she tried hard enough; it was the least she could do, now that simply busting her out with violence was no longer on the table. She should have been happy about that, what with her captain obviously not being cut out for an operation like that, but there was a part of her that couldn't help feeling a little disappointed.
Dialogue color: darkkhaki


Ship Time: 1612
Location: Turbo Train Coordinates.

Geraldine watched the interaction between Rian and her 'ex-husband' with a mild smirk pulling at one corner of her lips like she knew something they didn't. Strictly speaking, that would always be the case when it came to her, but it was mildly unsettling all the same. However, from Barnaby's perspective, he'd know that to be her standard sort of 'smile'. "Alright. So deal's a deal then. Where's Mona?" he asked. "Yeah... 'bout that?" Rian added. Gerrie's gaze cut over to Mattie like a knife, a brow raising slowly at her continued silence. The talkers were easy, using snark and wit to cover anxiety and insecurity. It was the silent ones that needed to be watched. They were capable of anything. This sort of assessment moved easily from Mattie to Abe and his goons, who sat there silently watching the goings on. Save for Abernathy, who kept his eyes locked squarely upon Barnaby, his expression dangerous blank, deeply assessing.

Finally, when there was enough blank silence and heavy staring done between the lot of them, Geraldine finally let out a breath and laughed dangerously, the sound almost sounding heavily practiced and perhaps not entirely sincere. "Alright, alright, you're right, deal's a deal. We'll bring this train to a nice stop and swap goods, like we promised," she decided. There was always the chance that she could have changed her mind and taken them and the dogs and made life easier, but where was the fun in that?

Ship Time: 1645
Location: Somewhere Along the Train Tracks.

After their brief conversation, they were made to endure a nice train ride together with enemies and Feds, until a nice spot with enough room for the Darling to land was located. Now, out in the middle of nowhere, the train drifted to a stop and the ship above it (the line removed by the Feds that had been on the roof) groaned and vibrated as both Riot and the ship's internal systems worked with and against each other to get the bird grounded. The cargo bay doors opened, and the ramp lowered slowly, a puff of dirt wafting into the air as the metal contacted the ground.

Inside the Darling

Bandit and Tabby raced down the ramp, the large wolf dog winding around the doctor's feet a couple times but allowing the use of its back for the woman to set a hand on to keep from falling. In this way, the pair reached the dirt, Tabitha staring wide-eyed up at the train with her med bag clutched hard against her chest and her shoulder rising and lowering with her attempt to breath normally.

Viktor, having had to pull the line back in and get the wench under control and the hatch closed, stood beside the machinery with his eyes on Tabitha, making sure she was alright from his vantage point, and occasionally responding with a nod or an affirmative when Arlo spoke to him. The crates, still in the cargo bay, had been placed onto pallets and hooked back up to the mule, just in case. After a moment, Riot came into the cargo bay to join the other two members of the crew, her arms crossed over her chest and her face pale. She was stressed, tired, and could do with a sandwich...

Outside the Darling

Now that they were stopped, the Feds picked up Abe and his compatriots and began to drag them into the depths of the train, Abernathy's attention locked upon Barnaby, even as he disappeared into the darkness of the corridor. A few more seconds passed and Mona, wearing a standard uniform of incarceration and holding a paper bag filled with her belongings, was escorted into the open, her hands still cuffed although they'd cuffed them in front as a show of good faith. Gerrie stepped between the XO and her Captain. "Once we offload those puppies from your ship, she'll be good to go and you all can float off back into space, no hard feelings," she reminded him.

Ship Time: 1755
Location: In Orbit.

It had taken a solid hour of work to get the beagle clocks taken off the Darling, reloaded onto the Alliance train, and get everyone un-cuffed and situated back on their respective vehicles. With Barnaby at the helm, Riot and Rian were taken off of the dreaded pilot's duties and allowed time to rest and recover while their Captain made quick work of getting them back out into the Black, moving quickly enough to make sure no one had any time to change their minds about the whole 'no hard feelings' part of their deal. Abe and his crew had been successfully removed from their home, the chips smuggled inside the timekeepers were out of their hands and presumably somewhere safer for all involved, and they were once again whole and complete, their crew back on board where they belonged.

A few waves came through to Barnaby's personal workstation, the first, a message inquiring about a job from someone currently located on Iscariot station. The second, a message from a long-time work associate of the Goodweathers', offering a potential job on St. Albans. To Mona's data pad came a message from an old acquaintance during her time returning the lost to their final resting place and an request for help.
Charity ~ Melody ~ Tabitha

Darling ~ Iscariot

Barnaby Goodweather

The Captain at the helm of his ship, Barnaby finally felt like things were back to normal. Or at least they would be once they got a little bit further away from the Georgia system. He was alone on the bridge. It was quiet. And the easy flying-- nobody on their trail, nothing in their hold, nowhere on their horizon-- made him calm. Calmer than he'd felt in what seemed like a long time. He was glad for the respite, savoring it while it lasted, and resolved to keep the promises he kept making himself throughout that whole adventure. Only easy jobs from here on out.

A wave came through and Barnaby was pleased to see his old friend Miriam Finch staring back at him. Miriam ran a passenger service, meaning people came to her looking to book passage with ships going hither to take them thither. Whenever she called on the Goodweathers, and the relationship went back far enough that Barnaby had known her since he was just a sprout, well those folk usually didn't want official records kept. Miriam was on the up and up, all the way. Her crews had uniforms and everything. Whoever she was calling about wanted to avoid all that. "Hey there, Miriam! Pleasant surprise hearing from you. What's it been?" They exchanged pleasantries and the like before getting to business. Miriam had a fellow who was waiting at Iscariot Space Station to be picked up and was headed to St. Albans. "Well now, Mona'll be tickled pink to get to go home for a spell. Sounds good, Miriam. Send me the particulars. Take care now." Nice little to and fro, nothing crazy. Wasn't nothing that could spoil his smile now.

A knock came at the threshold of the cockpit and when Barnaby turned, he saw Riot with a glum face, Bandit at her heel looking as glum as a wolf dog could. "Aw no." This had been coming a while now. Barnaby felt awful about it, having asked so much of her lately. There was perhaps some misguided excuse having to do with character building or some other such nonsense but what it really was was desperation and poor decision making. And this was result of that. Riot announced she was getting off at the next stop and was unclear what was in her future. Maybe she didn't know. Maybe that was ok. "You always got a home here, don't you ever forget it." He said, tears in his eyes, as he gave Bandit a healthy scritch behind the ears. He looked up at Riot. "You too."

Time to Captain up. It might have seemed callous, but there were certain things a man in charge of a ship had to make sure of and keeping her running was the top priority. After the safety and wellness of the crew. And getting paid. Once Riot left, Barnaby hopped onto the cortex and reopened the Darling's standard job posting, specifying that a mechanic was needed. On second though, he put an opening for a pilot as well. Couldn't hurt.

Mona appeared behind him, back in her own clothes, a similarly stern look on her face. The thing was Barnaby had been through this time and time again. He'd watched his pappy deal with crews coming and going. It wasn't unusual for folks to find Darling for a spell, make it their home, and then drift off into the Black. Sometimes they came back and sometimes they didn't. It was the nature of the work they did. Didn't make it any less rotten. "I wondered..." He said to her, gesturing she should take a seat. They talked for a good long time about all manner of things. Mona was a good friend and she would be missed, but her time on Darling was always meant to be temporary. They'd just been putting it off for almost ten years. She'd ride with them as far as St. Albans and Barnaby was glad for the extra time with her.

He set a course for Iscariot Station, typed out a quick response to an applicant for the mechanic position, requesting references, and left the bridge on autopilot for a bit. Being alone suddenly sounded like the last thing he wanted so he sought out his crew.
Dialogue Color - LightBlue

Viktor Söderberg

The stress and strain of the day and the mission had wrung the preacher out. He couldn't remember the last time he'd felt so physically and mentally exhausted since the war.
Sure, there had been a few close-seconds in his time with the Darling, but nothing quite like this.

The unloading of the clocks felt like it took a decade. He remained vigilant in watching over Tabby and just generally to lend a hand here and there where he was needed. It was a hour of mind-numbing work, but perhaps mind-numbing was just what he needed. He needed to be away and a peace with this ordeal, even for just a few minutes.

In the end it turned out that Barnaby had been correct in his assertion. No one on the Darling had gotten hurt. And no one else had gotten hurt either - at least not MORE hurt - as far as Viktor knew.

Once they were back flying again and Viktor had nothing else to officially do by the Captain, he took his leave. He took a long shower until the pounding of the water made his body feel as numb as his mind had previously. It was then off to the kitchen for the resident holy-man to have that, outstandingly belated, cup of tea that Tabitha had offered him earlier.

Rian Carpenter

February 19, 2020, 06:35:54 PM #7 Last Edit: February 19, 2020, 06:41:33 PM by Rian Carpenter
Rian was already in the kitchen. Prepping dinner. At times like this, making a really involved meal always helped calm him down, or at least center him in a way. Today it was prep work for the cake he was going to make. He had about half a dozen real eggs and a pound of flower left in his supplies he'd been saving for a special occasion. Today, they were alive after nearly getting locked up and killed at least half a dozen times. Sure they didn't get a payday, but maybe a cake would make people feel better?

The gunhand wasn't sure. He wasn't good at some things. Like flying, getting the spices right for Mexican food, and gauging how to console normal people who aren't used to nearly dying all the time. The cook was also considering coming clean with the whole crew about his dual identities, and his past. Abe definitely had the means to reach out to Jimmy while locked up, so trouble was going to come knocking if he was going to stick around.

Maybe cake was a silly idea? Maybe he should go? Would that be the right thing to do? Abe and Jimmy were likely to just come after Barnaby and the Darling crew all the same if he split. No, the best thing he could do was stay put, tell the truth, and do everything he could to protect them once that go-se hit their fan. He tried to channel all this worry and anxiety into his furious mixing of the ingredients.

Just about as his wrist was starting to cramp, Carpenter spotted the preacher arriving. He paused and put the bowl down.

"Hey Preacher..."

He stopped halfway as he almost tried to cover the cake he hoped to surprise the crew with. But then realized that was a doomed plan, since the smell was bound to start luring people towards the galley anyway once he popped this into the oven.

"Ehh I was hoping to surprise everybody but no biggie... What do you think, chocolate or crap, just chocolate I guess."

The killer cook eyed his crate of baking supplies and saw he only had the ingredients for chocolate frosting. He heard somebody else coming down the hall and called out to them. There was a palpable tension still on the ship and for some reason he felt like it was his job to try and put everybody back at ease.

"Cake's not ready yet! I see anybody try and stick their mitts in the batter, I'm gonna smack you before Tabby can lecture you about uncooked eggs!"

Mattie Rooney

Mattie sulked for the rest of the train job and all the way back to the Darling, where she removed herself from the others' company the first chance she got. Nobody in the crew knew her well enough to tell her actual sulking apart from her default resting sulky face, but there was a subtle difference there that someone like Lucky would have caught. But Lucky wasn't here. None of the friends she'd somehow managed to make over the years were here. Instead, she was faced with the grueling ordeal of having to worm her way into what appeared to be a very tightly-knit family of spacers. Being blindsided by the captain's plan and getting humiliated in front of Abernathy and the feds wasn't a very encouraging start.

On the bright side, she was free of working for Tate and all the baggage that came with it, or at least she considered herself to be free of it. The possible repercussions of betraying a wealthy, powerful employer were of little concern to her. She was also happy to be finally able to slip into her own clothes. Once she was in her familiar uniform of cargo pants and a slightly oversized t-shirt, she felt a little better. Or at least, more like herself and less like a pawn in other people's games.

Even so, Mattie still wasn't much in the mood to confront the captain or mingle with the crew, so after changing her clothes she wandered around the ship's corridors, getting to know the crooks and crannies of her new home. She finally found herself alone in the cargo bay, where she stopped to take the space in. It felt like years since Rian had dashed through here, bullet wound and all, screaming like a madman. She couldn't help but smile a little at the memory of their rescue operation. In hindsight, now that everything had turned out alright and she didn't have to worry about him getting them both killed, she could admit that it had been a lot of fun.
Dialogue color: darkkhaki

Tabitha Haemish


During the final stretch of work down on the planet, Tabby had been buzzing around like a honey bee trying to give Rian and their Captain some medication and water, but she could only do so much and had ended up standing nearby wringing her hands and looking like she was about to have a heart attack on her own. It took some finagling but she managed to drag Mona back into the med bay for a few minutes during it all just to do a quick once-over and to put some medicated salve on her wrists to fix up any chafing from the cuffs she'd had on for quite some time. But then again, the warrior woman had left to help get those damnable dogs off their boat. All in all, she wasn't sure her little heart could take much more today.


Now that they were back out in the calm of the black and the ship seemed to have slipped into a relaxed routine around them, Tabitha put the final touches on tidying up her med bay and slipped a couple pills wrapped in wax-paper into the pocket of her vest. Her hair was a frizzled, curling mess which she didn't bother pulling into place with a pencil. She didn't even know where her pencil had gone off to. With a slow inhale and equally slow exhale, Tabby exited the infirmary and walked through the halls of the ship, one hand on the right wall as she let the contours of the ship's interior lead her all over the place. She hummed, as she walked, the sound transitioning into a made-up song with nonsense and gibberish intermingled with a short summary of the day. "Walkin' through the ship~ Can't find my pencil~ Maybe it's out in space~ Everybody's home~ I think there's something in my shoe~ Oh there's a person~" she sang softly, stopping upon reaching Mattie's spot in the cargo bay.

"Do you mind terribly if I decorate your bunk?" she asked the other woman with a bright and curious smile, her voice soft and cheery. Reaching out, the doctor slipped her hand into Mattie's, wiggling her fingers around until she was able to get her grasp around the other person's palm. "Do you have any food allergies?" she asked, gently tugging the woman in the direction of the galley. "I prefer people to call be Tabby, do you have a nickname?" Tabs continued, walking purposefully with half a skip in her step. "Someone called me 'Bitha once and I don't think I liked it, but if you like it, I can probably learn to like it..."

"Cake's not ready yet! I see anybody try and stick their mitts in the batter, I'm gonna smack you before Tabby can lecture you about uncooked eggs!" Rian's voice rang out from up ahead.

"It's true," she told her captive, "They're not great for you when they're raw, but better than one would suppose. I once learned how to ferment the yolk in salt and spices. Oh, did he say batter?" she asked Mattie, moving with her into the light of the galley and smiling, "Are we having cake? Oh! I promised you tea!" she exclaimed upon seeing Viktor, her eyes bright and her hand still comfortably clamped around Mattie's palm. "I'll make a cup for everyone, that's..." she counted thoughtfully, "One, two, three, four, five, six, seven, eight, and a half?"
Dialogue Color: Pink

Viktor Söderberg

Viktor wasn't surprised to see Rian already in the kitchen when he entered for his long-awaited cup of tea. Much like Viktor in church, the kitchen appeared to act as a place of calm and peace for Rian - when he wasn't shouting at the stove, cookware or food for misbehaving.

"Hey preacher. Ehh I was hoping to surprise everybody but no biggie... What do you think chocolate or crap, just chocolate I guess."

"I didn't intend to ruin any surprises, my friend, but a cake sounds like a much-needed treat right about now. Since I'm here anyway, can I give you a hand? I'm no brilliant cook, but I can stir and measure with the best of them." He indicated the bowl in the other man's hand, wanting to be helpful but not wanting to step on the cooks toes in his teritory.

A sound in the hall intrupted them and shortly Tabitha rounded the corner with a new woman that Viktor didn't recognize. She must have come in during the unloading of the cargo, but he didn't recall seeing her anywhere else. He must be tired.


"I'll make a cup for everyone, that's one, two three, four, five, six, seven, eight, and a half?"

"Tabitha, dear, are you pulling new friends out of the black of space now? Or do they just materialize near you?" he asked with a light chuckle.

He turned to the new woman. "Our lovely Tabby can make friends anywhere she goes. It's a delightful trait of hers. My name is Viktor. It's wonderful to have new faces aboard." He extented his hand to shake hers. He felt the warmth in his smile light up and lift his tired face.

It was always nice to have reasons to smile.

Barnaby Goodweather

Barnaby descended the stairs from the cockpit to the sounds of his crew conversing. He popped a squat half way down and settled on a stair to listen. He could hear Tabby fussing, Rian cooking, Preacher helping. It all brought a smile to his face. Down below him, Barnaby saw Riot pass through, a rare smile on her face. Moving on was the best for her and the pup, Barnaby decided. At least until she figured some stuff out; folks her age needed time to figure their place in the 'verse. Heck when he was her age, he was just out of his second marriage. And no, that wasn't Geraldine. Tamara. Barnaby was a hopeless romantic, spurred on by his first lost love. He felt love hard and strong and quick. Big ol' softy.

His knees groaned at him as Barnaby stood and took the rest of the stairs to the area between the dining table and the kitchen. He stood there in the middle of everything as people whizzed back and forth. Rian with a bowl of half mixed cake batter slopping around stopped long enough to let Barnaby dip a finger in. "Thanks, Ri'." Tabby with a tea kettle boiling hot- "Two sugars, Tab. Yeah like always." Mona appeared, her sad smile infecting Barnaby. He had to warn her off with a faux-angry glare that quickly turned to laughter for the both of them. No tears just now. There'd be time for the goodbyes later. They had eleven days to their destination, after all.

As folks started settling to wait for the cake to bake, Barnaby got an idea as he took his spot at the head of the table. He raised his cup of tea in the air. "Raise a glass, if you don't mind. To all of us and all of you and maybe one for me too! Cheers!" His smile brightened as he took a sip. "Ya'll know what goes good with tea?" He looked at Tabby with mischief in his eyes. "Singin'. Tabby, do us the pleasure wouldja?"
Dialogue Color - LightBlue

Rian Carpenter

February 24, 2020, 05:36:30 PM #12 Last Edit: February 24, 2020, 05:38:30 PM by Rian Carpenter
Rian waved away the Preacher's offer to help with the cake. He went over to grab the pan and as he'd timed his prep just about right, the oven let out a satisfying DING! It was time to stop abusing that batter and get it into the pan.

"I got it, Vic. This is how I relax believe it or not. I kinda got a system..."

Rian suppressed a chuckle at the sight of Tabby dragging along the newest member of his now 2 person security team as if she'd been lasso'd. She was a welcome addition and somebody else for Tabby to focus her intense as the sun friendliness towards. They hadn't gotten their pay-day but they managed to slip out of a rather well laid scam to smuggle Alliance military hardware. But just for the moment, he had the crew back together and whole. Mission accomplished. Payday be damned. In that moment Rian was happy to just be the cook.

The gunslinger/culinary artist plopped down the Pan and paused his "system" to introduce the preacher to the newest member of his security team.

"Preach, that there is one of the finest shots I've been lucky enough to have decide not to shoot me: Mattie."

He smiled and was genuinely grateful she'd made that split second call to switch sides. Carpenter saw her in action and if she'd had less scruples he might not have had the chance to even try at his car-jumping antics. The captain managed to take advantage of this pause, to sneak a finger into the mixing bowl. Pivoting around he jokingly made a fist like it was a serious transgression, but making an exaggerated face to indicate it was faux outrage.

"Damn it, Cap! How am I supposed to cement my authority as the security chief if I can't protect the damn mixing bowl?"

He put his hands on his hips then shook his head, and chuckled breaking character quickly. The catharsis of the moment wasn't lost on him right now. The man formerly known as Russo was feeling really comfortable in his new skin as one of the good guys. He quickly poured the batter into the cake-pan and slid it into the oven. Rian started prepping to make his signature frosting. The trick of course was real sugar. Rian took a seat at the table and slowly and carefully mixed the frosting. He had plenty of time to mix this and he seconded the Captain's plea for a song. His order, unbeknownst to him, was probably his first as XO.

"Yeah! Raise our spirits in the timeless art of song, good doctor."

Mattie Rooney

"...I think there's something in my shoe~ Oh there's a person~"

Tabitha's song was like an ominous tune from a horror movie, slowly getting closer until it was too late for Mattie to run and hide. She turned around to face the woman, waiting for her to state her business.

"Do you mind terribly if I decorate your bunk?"

"With what?" Tabitha's fairy-like demeanor immediately summoned up mental images of flowers and butterflies, and Mattie shuddered at the thought. "Y'know what, I ain't really big on decorations. Sorry."

Next thing she knew, Tabby had taken her by the hand and was presumably leading her to where the rest of the crew was gathered. There was a borderline cloying sweetness to the doctor's demeanor that Mattie would have found insufferable if she could have detected any hint of insincerity behind it, but Tabby didn't seem to be putting up an act, and so her disposition was merely a minor nuisance Mattie would do her best to put up with.

"Do you have any food allergies?"

"Not that I know of."

"I prefer people to call be Tabby, do you have a nickname? Someone called me 'Bitha once and I don't think I liked it, but if you like it, I can probably learn to like it..."

"It's just Mattie." It was a nickname in and of itself, one that Mattie always used to introduce herself. She was never Matilda unless someone asked; by being a Matilda she ran the risk of being called Tilda, or Tilly, both of which were almost as bad as being called Temperance, or Nance, or Nan. She made a mental note that Tabby didn't like to be called 'Bitha and decided to honor her preference in the future... provided Tabby did the same for her if her actual first or second name ever came up.

Once they got in the galley, Mattie pulled her hand away from Tabitha's, probably a little more aggressively than was appropriate. Fortunately, everybody seemed to be too friendly and/or preoccupied to really notice.

"Tabitha, dear, are you pulling new friends out of the black of space now? Or do they just materialize near you? Our lovely Tabby can make friends anywhere she goes. It's a delightful trait of hers. My name is Viktor. It's wonderful to have new faces aboard."

Mattie bristled at the preacher not recognizing her as one of the mercs who'd helped storm the train earlier, but shook his hand anyway. Rian interjected and saved her the trouble of having to introduce herself.

"Preach, that there is one of the finest shots I've been lucky enough to have decide not to shoot me: Mattie."

"Ain't that the gorram truth." The wrinkles on her furrowed brow softened just a hint, although there was still no trace of a smile to be seen on her face. She took a seat at the table, retreating into her bubble as the others around her joked and chatted.

It had been such a long time since she'd been a part of a crew she could call a family, and she wasn't sure she liked this weird warm atmosphere she suddenly found herself in. She'd feel much more at ease with Begby and his ilk, scruffy mercenaries who shared a kind of camaraderie without having to get all sappy about it. Of the present company, Rian probably came closest to that, but not really. The dimpled jokester bustling about the kitchen, lovingly berating the Captain for pinching a dollop of batter, was quite different from the quippy but ultimately hard-headed man she'd stormed the Darling with. The skills he'd shown during the operation weren't just something you picked up casually; Mattie may have been relatively new to the biz, but she knew a pro when she saw one. So this whole scene felt a tad surreal to her.
Dialogue color: darkkhaki

Thackery Arlington III

It took some while of lurking around a little-used corridor before Arlo realized that he was in hiding. He hadn't really meant to be; it was just that after all the hustle and bustle and ups and downs and excitement and nonsense, he really was quite thoroughly peopled out. Add to that the way that everyone on the ship seemed so damned sociable - which Arlo took to enthusiastically for very short bursts and then fled from for very long stretches - and the whole business was frankly exhausting.

Still, he supposed he'd better make nice. It seemed circumstances were bound to thrust him in with their lot for the foreseeable future - not that he had any objection, of course; their way of life really was quite fascinating, after all - so it would be better to take what was apparently a rare moment of peace and use it to better integrate himself with their odd little family.

Besides, he smelled cake.

Following his nose, he found himself (unsurprisingly) in the galley, where it seemed every single other soul on the ship had had also gathered. Cake had a way of doing that, he supposed. Arlo didn't join them just yet, though. The whole scene had a coziness about it that he was reluctant to intrude on - they were laughing, teasing one another, completely at ease with each other's company in a way that was both picturesque and utterly alien to Arlo.

Hands in his pockets, he hovered awkwardly just outside the door, feeling obligated to enter now that he was there, but having no idea what he ought to do or say if he did.
Dialogue Color: darkseagreen | 8FBC8F

"I have been a selfish being all my life, in practice, though not in principle."

Tabitha Haemish

"Our lovely Tabby can make friends anywhere she goes. It's a delightful trait of hers. My name is Viktor. It's wonderful to have new faces aboard."

"Preach, that there is one of the finest shots I've been lucky enough to have decide not to shoot me: Mattie."

"Ain't that the gorram truth."

With cheeks pink and smile bright, Tabitha floated around the other members of her crew to enter the kitchen and begin boiling the water for tea. She listened to the conversation in the room, apparently not having been upset by Mattie tugging her hand away. While Tabby was loose on personal space, she was big on boundaries. Once she knew what they were for a particular person. The kettle began to sing, and she turned the heat down, fetching the teas she knew her Family liked, along with their add-ons.

"Two sugars, Tab. Yeah like always," Barnaby asked and she beamed in his direction, a tendril of golden white curls resting over her forehead and the bridge of her nose. She didn't see to mind or notice. Once everyone had settled, the doctor brought the tray of teacups, all different sizes and themes and states of ware, to the table, putting a cup in front of each of them. Mattie's, since she didn't know how she took her tea, came with a small bowl of sugar cubes, a ball of hardened honey, a small container of cream and a dropper of 'lemon'. She wanted her to have options. As she moved around, she noticed she had one cup left on her tray and her eyes looked around for the fancy gentleman that it belonged to.

Ah, there he was. With a smile, she set the cup on the table at an open seat and moved to the entryway to set her hand in his, the other holding her tray against her hip. "We missed you," she told him, her smile genuine and warm. "Come in out of the cold," she continued, tugging him in toward the table and the crew.

"Raise a glass, if you don't mind. To all of us and all of you and maybe one for me too! Cheers!" their Captain said, and Tabby sat, her hands coiling around her own teacup as she lifted it in turn. Once the toast was over, she took a tender sip, careful not to burn her tongue.

"Ya'll know what goes good with tea? ... Singin'. Tabby, do us the pleasure wouldja?"

"Yeah! Raise our spirits in the timeless art of song, good doctor," Rian added.

The teacup returned to the table and the doctor cleared her throat as she stood, a hand lifting to smooth back the curls with varying levels of success. She didn't ask what their next plan was, where they were headed, what exactly had happened, or whether they should worry about that suave fellow coming back to haunt them. That wasn't her way. She looked around at the table and began her singing, tips of her fingers settled against the edge of the table.

We circle around, we circle around
The boundaries of the earth

We circle around, we circle around
The boundaries of the Earth

Wearing our long wing feathers as we fly
Wearing our long wing feathers as we fly

We circle around, we circle around
The boundaries of the sky

Dialogue Color: Pink


February 25, 2020, 02:11:11 PM #16 Last Edit: February 26, 2020, 02:16:23 PM by Lomari
Ship Time: 1200
Displayed Station Time: 2000
Location: Exiting SS Iscariot Airspace

It had taken eleven days of travel to get from their end of the universe to Iscariot Space Station, where they'd stopped just long enough to restock, refuel, pickup their newest addition, one Chris Lee Kayne who'd applied for the recently open position of Mechanic, and grab a passenger who had apparently booked passage on The Darling, one Heinrich "Hank" Potter, who brought nothing along with him onto the ship save for a red briefcase. The crew had had eleven more days with Riot, and Tabitha had thrown her one hell of a goodbye party. Still, it didn't hurt any less when she and Bandit had waved goodbye from the docks and disappeared into the station's crowd.  Even now, Tabby stood in the cargo bay staring out the view-port at the door at the slowly shrinking station.

Eleven days had been better than none, but it still wasn't enough. But it had been just enough time for Mattie and Arlo to find their place, however awkward or surreal, on the ship. At least physically. And perhaps much to her pleasure, or at least not to her frustration, Mattie's bunk remained undecorated. The same could not be said for Viktor, whose bunk had to take on the brunt of Tabby's need to decorate as a coping mechanism for losing some of their family members. The news of Mona's departure had been left for later, in lieu of Rian's news, which seemed more relevant and attention worth at the moment. Of course, Mona would tell the others in her own time...

But now, freshly topped off with what they could afford (considering they hadn't exactly been paid for their last job), they drifted away from the Station full and whole. Out of kindness for the newcomer, the Captain had waited for the big speech until Chris had come aboard and they could have their first Crew Meeting together as a full group to explain the particulars of what the next few days would entail for them.
Charity ~ Melody ~ Tabitha

Darling ~ Iscariot

Barnaby Goodweather

February 26, 2020, 12:22:07 PM #17 Last Edit: March 03, 2020, 06:22:02 AM by noseatbelts
Barnaby stood before the two new arrivals, his cheeks positively aching from the smile he had perched there. He was excited to have a paying passenger on board. Easy money in his pocket. Keep his crew safe. Give them a chance to relax. Plus the rate this man Potter was offering for safe arrival, well dang, that'd get them set for a goodly while, no doubt. The other one, Chris Lee Kayne, was new crew and Barnaby had nothing at all against him. Except for the fact that he was replacing the last mechanic, Riot, and she'd been onboard for a couple of years and Barnaby had grown used to her.

"Hi!" He said, offering them each a handshake. "Barnaby Goodweather, Captain of this here ship, The Darling. You both let me know if you got any questions. I can show you both to your bunks, if you like." Barnaby reached for the passenger's luggage, Heinrich quickly refusing the hospitality, preferring to carry his bag himself. "Suit yourself, Mr. Potter." Wanting to do something with his hands Barnaby offered to take Chris's bag. "Bunks are thisaway."

The Captain led them through the ship, past other crew as they either went about their work or wanted to serve as the proverbial welcome wagon. He stopped at the passenger dorm, which was a work room that had been converted back and forth between storage and dormitory over the years. Luckily it had recently been decorated by Tabby in anticipation of their new arrival. So at least it was clean and smelled nice. "Should just be a few days 'till we get to St. Albans, so make yourself comfortable, Mr. Potter, and we'll get you there real quick-like." He left the man to his own business and waved Chris to keep following him.

They kept walking but not too far, Darling wasn't so big afterall. "Crew bunks are right over yonder. Tabby will be sure to get you situated. It'll sound odd but let her decorate it for you. She likes that sort of thing. Crew gets three square meals a day, courtesy of Rian, and a place to sleep. You'll get an even cut of the jobs when we get 'em, your cut comes after ship expenses and the like. Any questions?" Barnaby gave him a tight smile. Getting to know new folks was always a challenge, but Barnaby reckoned he was good at it. "Alright now, I'll let you get settled 'fore we go peaking about the engine room, 'less you wanna do it now?"
Dialogue Color - LightBlue

Chris Lee Kayne

February 26, 2020, 08:18:55 PM #18 Last Edit: February 27, 2020, 07:57:10 PM by Chris Lee Kayne Reason: Minor edits of spelling
Initially the young mechanic was rather tight lipped and even fidget in place. The very high energy and outwardly friendly captain caught Chris off guard just a bit.  It wasn't necessarily a bad thing, just, shocking. But, in the face of such kindness Chris couldn't ignore it as that would be just rude, so he would stick out his left hand, the good one, and give the captain a firm shake as he spoke softly. "It's a pleasure Cap'n thank you for accepting my application, and I'll be holding onto my bags but it's greatly appreciated."

For the majority of the walk, the short one at that, Chris was quite and walked with his hands gently gripped around his large duffel bag of tools  rather naturally avoiding eye contact. He could feel the shreds of his awkwardness creeping up but he did his best to keep his mind at ease.  The captain was polite, the ship was rather tidy and nice, which Chris deeply appreciated, and the bunk was at least pleasant. Much nicer than his room on the fist ship he was on since leaving home. 

"Hmm...No I don't believe I have any pressing questions.  Maybe a brief on any particular projects you'd like me working on between more major repairs? Also yes, the engine room I would love to see it actually! For the first time since boarding the ship, Chris would actually get some excitement, his face growing into a warm smile at just the mention of their possible destination. Chris took no time unloading his backpack which carried his day to day stuff such as cloths, hygiene and a few knickknacks, and other assorted items.  He however kept the duffel bag in hand and was smiling excitedly.  This involved two of Chris' favorite subjects, new things, and big fancy complex things that needed to be worked on.

Rian Carpenter

Rian positioned himself a few paces back behind Barnaby, just off to the left. Still in security chief mode. He eyed the new arrival with a sort of distant perfunctory smile. The type one musters as they start running an automated Cortex search on your background of them as you walk past. He'd already checked out Kayne and he came up clean.

Potter gave him just an innate uneasiness. He'd known the man for less time than it takes to spit but he felt like he could imagine the man saddling up to a hearty bowl of eyeballs over milk for breakfast like it was normal. With a few taps he added a parameter to try and see if the name itself came up as an alias if it didn't hit any hard data or background. The search tool wasn't particularly powerful, it was the best a scrub like him could find and wouldn't match the wealth of databases an Fed could check out.

The former crook and enforcer wasn't much of one to judge. No matter what kinda bad vibes the old German gave off, Rian was the one who should probably be casting a looming shadow of darkness around him. Things he'd done, the pain he'd inflicted. Everyone around him should naturally just be choking on their own disgust. The retiree was probably just doomed with a villainous aura.

The gunhand tucked his cortex unit into his shirt pocket and let the search run in the background. Unconsciously he itched at the bandage still under his shirt as he inquired with their guest:
"Welcome aboard, Mr Potter. I'm Rian I'll be cookin' for you tonight, you let me know if you've got any food allergies, or anything. It'll all be mostly synthetic protein anyway but it never hurts to check."

Next as Barnaby greeted their new crew-member he hung back and stayed quiet until the Cap mentioned his dual duty as the chef, and he apologized for their current lack of culinary choices.

"It's not gonna be anything to write home about for a bit, but I'm hoping on St Alban's I'll be able to get us stocked up on some real protein and veggies."

He shrugged and made a face that kinda said "You know how it is." They weren't noblemen, so getting a steady supply of what many called real food was a struggle equal to trying to unionize under gunfire in his estimation.

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