S1:Ep6 - Lights, Camera, Action!

Started by Lomari, August 01, 2021, 04:17:48 PM

Mattie Rooney

August 31, 2022, 04:01:23 AM #60 Last Edit: August 31, 2022, 04:13:04 AM by Mattie Rooney
Location: Crew Quarters

So, we meet again, Zane Harkness, you cocky góu zaĭ zi...

It was only this morning that Mattie had tucked the book away with grandiose promises of not touching it again unless things got dire, yet here she was, reaching for sub-par literature to take her mind off of the events of the day.

Not that there were any real events to take her mind off of. Thanks to her crafty sheep-related excuses and supreme gift of stealth, Mattie had managed to avoid Caraway's prying questions for now. It helped that as the acting captain of the ship, Rian had gotten the brunt of the writer's attention; she'd felt bad for him, but not enough to step up and take some of the heat.

Maybe she was being selfish. She knew he had bigger skeletons in his closet than she did, ones that could cause actual harm if they got out. Mattie's skeletons were the kind people were told to confront, to deal with, make peace with. She didn't want to think about it right now (ever), which was why she turned to the one source of distraction she had at hand, the will-they-or-won't-they (finally take revenge on the gang that burned down the Porter farmstead) between Virginia and Zane.

The book finally turned out to be good for something -- as the pages crawled by, each of them taking the protagonists further away from revenge and closer to a physical consummation of their relationship, Mattie found her lids growing heavier, until sleep swooped in just in time to rescue her from the incoming mediocre erotica.

Mattie's slumber was far from peaceful, filled with one intense dream after another, most of them bordering nightmares. In her final dream of the night she was back home, bedridden with a terrible fever. Her mother kept vigil beside her, but Caraway was also there, hovering with his notepad, following Lenora Rooney's every move with a keen, inappropriate curiosity.

And what's worse, Lenora was prattling Mattie's life story to him, only she was telling it all wrong; she lamented that her daughter didn't realize she was pretty and was afraid to wear dresses because of it; that Mattie needed companionship and was too blind to see that her best friend Georgie was in love with her, so she'd had to go out and find her a husband herself; that Mattie had been so traumatized by her father going to war that she'd turned her back on her real passions and picked up sharpshooting as an unhealthy coping mechanism.

Mattie wanted to interject, to tell Caraway that her mother was twisting everything, but she was too exhausted to speak, her body hot and heavy with fever. She could do nothing but watch Caraway's pen fly across the page as he recorded every lie and misunderstanding that left Lenora's lips. He only paused to place his clammy hand on Mattie's forehead to check her temperature, looking to her mother for confirmation that he was doing it correctly.

Finally, mercifully, the sickbed scene faded away, and Mattie felt someone tugging at her pillow. She rolled on her side and came face to face with a flustered Tabby. What was she doing? Why was she up already? Not only up but fully dressed, wide awake and seemingly busy at... whatever this was.

"What?" Mattie sat up groggily. "What time is it? Ruttin' hell..."

Her body felt a little like it had in the dream; not feverish, but heavy, sluggish. Waterlogged with sleep. She knew this feeling; it was the feeling of oversleeping, of your body collapsing under the weight of one too many restless nights and losing grip of its usual schedule. No wonder her dreams had been so numerous and vivid.

"What're you doin' snoopin' 'round my bed?" she cast a suspicious glance at Tabby as she gathered her pants from the floor and pulled them on. "Shouldn't you be, I dunno, fixin' our guest a cup of tea for breakfast?"

She wasn't annoyed so much as genuinely confused why Tabby was buzzing around the crew's quarters instead of making Caraway feel welcome. She'd seemed happy to have new blood on board. Kinda. Maybe? Or had everyone else just been so profoundly uncomfortable that she'd looked enthusiastic in comparison?
Dialogue color: darkkhaki

Viktor Söderberg

With a new passenger aboard and a job focus on, everyone had gone about their duties after the initial hellos. For Viktor, that meant Cortex counseling sessions. He had three sessions lined up for the week as well as two new patient interviews. He had fallen fast alseep reviewing patient files. When he woke, a blanket had been pulled over him and his data pad tucked away in his footlocker. Tabby had a habit of doing this just as Viktor had a habit of falling asleep reading his files. It was a comfort.
This afternoon is was a session with a couple who were having trouble communicating and then a meeting with a lovely older lady looking for grief counseling after her daughter had passed away.
The preacher didn't normally take more than one meeting in a day when he was in the black but the older lady had seemed very distraught and couldn't work in a call at any other time this week. Besides his own mental health and the sometimes spotty connections, time alone in the quarters could be hard to arrange and with confidentiality on the line he had be to certain of no interruptions. He'd have to see if he could find a better space.
"Tabs?" He'd asked, once he found her. "Barring any medical emergencies, would it be OK if I used that med bay for my sessions today? Just two, this afternoon?"

Thackery Arlington III

"Avast, ye scoundrels!"

The hooves of Arlo's horse thundered across the decks of the Earth-That-Was sailing vessel - never mind how the animal was managing to navigate such a space at a gallop, or how it had even attained a gallop at all while confined to a ship; that wasn't important. What was important was the wind streaming through Arlo's hair as he rode, making his ponytail breeze back in a regal echo of the horse's rippling mane and tail. His steed caught up easily to the scoundrels in question, who were all felled in short order by the snicker-snak of Arlo's rapier, toppling gloriously into the waves in bloodless droves.

When all were defeated and Arlo stood victorious, he drew the hoverbike he was riding up short by the ship's mast and dismounted to address the damsel tied there. He effortlessly pulled off the helmet that had concealed his face and shook his hair out in a slow-motion wave.

"My lady," he greeted her with a sweeping bow, ignoring the fact that she bore a remarkable resemblance to his baby sister Georgie's favorite dolly. His blade chopped through the ropes tying her to the tree in a single blow, and he said something else terribly romantic, something to do with sunsets maybe or sparkling stars, he didn't really bother coming up with the details, but she was very impressed and flattered and grateful and leapt up behind him on the horse's back, which was a horse again because he didn't really want a hoverbike after all now that he'd already done the helmet bit. "Those cufflinks go
perfectly with your pocket silk," she told him admiringly.

The desert sun sparkled down on them as they dashed away though the trees, until suddenly the ground started to shake and quake and then the decks of the ship broke in two as a sharp fin crested the sand and an enormous grizzly boar rose up, roaring, from the waves, its claws raking terrible lines through the earth while its tentacles splashed about, creating tidal waves that tossed the ship to and fro.

"What's your horse's name?!" the damsel shrieked in a panic.

Arlo tipped the brim of his hat down over his eyes to squint at the bear through the dusty summer haze. A lone vulture cawed overheard and a clock somewhere tolled high noon. He slowly raised his sword and took calm and careful aim.

"Biscuits," he said grimly, and fired. The shot was perfect, hitting its mark dead-on, but to no avail. Uninjured, the bore simply roared again and towered over Arlo, then came crashing down with a tender smooch on his forehead.

"Ahh! Biscuits!" Arlo yelled, jerking awake and nearly colliding foreheads with the ship's doctor. "Tabitha! What? What are you doing?" He looked wildly around his bunk, which was suddenly much tidier than he was sure he'd left it. "And where have all my pocket silks gone?"
Dialogue Color: darkseagreen | 8FBC8F

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

Albie Smit

There was a string of farm animals across Albie's bunk when he startled awake. He stayed still, breathing evenly,  blinking blearily at the sheep for a moment, processing the voice of the crew.  Then he smiled, just a little. Cute. He appreciated a paper sheep; no shit to clean up.

Speaking of which, if he was going to play the shepherd, he ought to get off his rear and do it. He was tempted to lay there and feign sleep until the room was clear of people, but a the tinny echo of a certain voice chastised him in memory. You didn't put off caring for a beast, not even if you were nursing a gut-wound bound to kill you... so he compromised, sliding out of bed and out the door before anyone could speak to him, offering a quick nod to the wakeful crew in passing so as not to be impolite.

The sheep were in fine shape -- he didn't recognize the breed and hoped no one would ask him, but they were clearly well-fed and well-kept. The fleece he ran through his fingers wasn't the finest, but he expected it would make good warm wool for some frontier town. If that's where they ended up; with a rueful smile, Albie had to acknowledge to himself that he'd jumped into this role headfirst and without more information than Aw-Shucks Albie would have been able to remember. 'spose it does make it easier to commit to the bit. Ain't exactly playing dumb if I don't know anything in the first place.. But he did know sheep, and he went through the chores they required with a steady competence that was buried somewhere deeper than muscle memory.

Feeding, watering, mucking up, and even meandering through the flock checking briefly on each sheep -- which made him feel a little like a Shepherd instead of a shepherd. Be at peace, my children he thought irreverently) -- took up hardly any time. He ought to head back to his bunk, probably, or find the galley -- he was sure he'd been shown it, but everything from before sleep was hazy and a little dreamlike. It was only now, after getting more than a snatched hour or two of sleep, that he realized just how exhausted he'd been running for the past week. Or maybe longer. Shorter? It really was all a blur.

As he wandered among the sheep, the back of his mind weighed the chances of getting caught snooping against the visceral need to know every inch of this territory, just in case. He hadn't even asked how long this trip was supposed to take — well, he couldn't could he, when he ought to have known? — and the thought of perhaps months in space without a single hidey-hole in reserve made him itch all over.

Consequences lost. With a conscious effort to keep his pace to Aw-Shucks Albie's amble, he aimed for the engine room.
Dialogue color: sienna


Ship Time: 0815
Ship Location: In Transit (Days to arrival: 5)

"Shàngdì, qǐng shāle wǒ."

"Running on empty, Captain Carpenter?" Noah Caraway asked from the doorway, his smile bright as he sipped a fresh cup of tea from a teacup he'd brought from home, the saucer held delicately beneath it. "I brought my own brew, if you'd like some," the man offered, nodding his head to the brute of a security guard.

With a grunt of dutiful, albeit reluctant obedience, the mountain turned and headed back to Mister Caraway's things.

"It'll give us some time to talk about how we'll handle the journey and what the arrival might look like, oh and how we go about unloading the cargo. I'd also love to shadow you for the day, I think some interactions with the crew would make great detail for my novel, you see!" he continued, sitting at the table and putting the cup and saucer down onto its surface, eyeing Rian expectantly all the while.

Ship Time: 1200
Ship Location: In Transit (Days to arrival: 4)

Noah had barely left Rian's side since the day he arrived, only parting ways to follow whoever had the misfortune of crossing their paths when the author became bored. As such, today the writer and his ever present threat of a man had focused their attention on the poor, unsuspecting Arlo, catching him as he crossed paths with Rian and the group on the way to lunch in the galley.

"Oh, perfect timing!" the man exclaimed, moving away from the acting Captain to fall into Arlo's orbit. "You are a conundrum! Mister Arlo, was it? And I think that will be an interesting bit of juicy drama for my book! Say, what's a man of your cleanliness doing on a ship like this?" he asked, looking the other man up and down.

Clearly, this wasn't a working man. His hands were soft and smooth, looking more moisturized than calloused, and his spine was still remarkably straight, not bent from years of hard work. Noah tapped near his eyes with the butt end of his pen, "I've got quite an eye, you see," he explained, stepping closer to Noah and sniffing him obviously. He smelled pleasant. "Details are my business, after all!" he added with bright laughter. His guard rolled his eyes, but remained silent. "And don't spare me any of the juicy details!"

Meanwhile, the sheep in the hold were getting antsy and some of them had started growing anxious from the lack of sky and fresh air. A couple had taken to bickering with one another and bleating in frustration.
Charity ~ Melody ~ Tabitha

Darling ~ Iscariot

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