Summary: Kharon's pilots get answers to some burning questions in the Mess.
Date: PHD123
Related Logs: Various and Sundry. Also refers to Conversation Interruptus.


It's not often that pilots can afford to drop by the mess hall outside their scheduled meal-times, which is why Ivory is sitting alone at a table during this awkward gap between the start of first shift and the end of the first CAP. The cavernous room is quiet, for once, its peace interrupted only by the three enlisted personnel scrubbing down tables, washing metal utensils, cleaning trays, and otherwise being useful. Timon, on the other hand, is doing nothing of the kind, chewing thoughtfully on a protein bars while flipping through a few schematics. A few crumbs dribble down his mouth, brushed away by the flick of a finger.

'Time to breathe' has been more abundant in engineering since the malfunctions aboard the Kharon have stopped. Roubani may or may not be on his scheduled meal time, wearing his duty jacket with the top button undone and with his laptop bag over one shoulder. One side of his front jacket pocket holds a cigarette pack, and the other, as if indignant at getting too far from nature, holds a small calculator and two pens. He drifts through the line, securing a tray and just a small thing to nibble on - unleavened bread crackers - along with a mug of tea, naturally. Thus armed he heads into the quiet cavern, avoiding the cleaning crews and certainly leaving nothing in his wake to make their job harder.

The sharp snick of snapping laminated paper echoes loudly in the mess as Timon turns the page, his mid-morning snack held between his teeth as he scribbles down a few notes with a black oil pencil. No wonder the skin of his left hand is smeared. He doesn't seem to see Poet as of yet — or, for that matter, the cup of coffee he comes dangerously close to upending when he reaches for its handle.

Roubani does see Timon, probably unfortunately for that party. An approach, if there was to be one, is paused however by that reaching for the coffee. Because if it spills everywhere, he's so not continuing on to a messy table.

It doesn't spill everywhere, not at all — and thus an opportunity to drive off the Poet is lost. Instead, Timon bites down hard on his protein bar, letting it drop down to the table before grabbing his cup by the rim. His left hand lifts it to his lips for a delicate sip — or three. Then, down goes mug, again without incident, and yet more annotations are made to the diagram in front of him.

Quiet, clean. This table seems to satisfy two out of three of Roubani's general criteria for where to sit, and you probably don't want to know the third. He collects his crackers and tea off his tray and hands it to one of the staff rather than lugging the entire unwieldy thing over for the same of a plate and mug, and settles without a single word on the other side of the table from Timon. Not like /exactly/ across from him because sitting like that is an interruption and would require permission; no, just a little to the side so unwritten laws of personal space and general 'involvement with each other' aren't violated.

The little jolt caused by Roubani sitting down somewhat opposite him causes Timon's pencil to angle just slightly to the left, making what had been a 'd' look something more like a circle and a curlicue. It also makes Ivory look up from his work — and despite the fact that he is in fact engaged in work, he does seem reasonably pleased to have a visitor. "Morning," the pilot offers, picking up his protein bar and taking another small nibble. "Didn't expect to see you here."

The laptop bag is settled carefully lying down on the table rather than left to hang where it might get jostled. The pens in Roubani's front pocket clickclick against the calculator as he settles, looking slightly embarassed as not having achieved the ninja silence he'd been going for. "Likewise," he admits, picking at his crackers. Mmm. Crackers. Tea. "Perhaps today will be one of those constant surprise sort of days."

Thorn enters the mess hall, wearing his duty fatigues; slow day today, it looks like. He moves quietly to the serving area, grabbing a tray and a plate of food along with the folder already in his hand. Stepping away from the kitchen, he looks over at the seating area; only one table occupied, and he doesn't dislike the people sitting there enough to excuse being antisocial. With the slightest of sighs, he starts walking towards the table occupied by the other two men.

Timon isn't sitting with his face to the hatch, and Poet's words — for all their quiet — overwhelm the sound of Thorn's footsteps. The ECO is thus ignored in favor of the pilot-turned-snipe, whose dry observation elicits a small chuckle and another furious note on the diagram with which he's fiddling. Then: "You were hiding something last night, weren't you?" the man asks, not looking up, with all the wide-eyed innocence his face can muster.

There's a bit of scraping and shuffling through the Mess Hall line. Lollygagging apparently as a familiar ginger-haired finicky eater stops dead in his tracks, maybe even slightly oblivious to the fact that he is holding up traffic, and stares down at his growing tray full of slop, junk and other things that should likely defy identification, let alone be considered worthy of consumption by 'normal' people. Unfortunately for Rebound, the days of 'normal' are essentially over, and what you get's what you get. That could be considered a rumination on the current state of humanity, as it were.

"Nonsense," Roubani replies to Timon, and, very well-timed to give the LT not a shred of a second to retaliate, he looks up over Timon's shoulder and redirects. "Good morning, Thorn."

"Morning," is Thorn's curt, raspy reply. He nears the table, placing his tray down and sitting somewhere in the vicinity of the two others. He doesn't begin eating immediately, though, as the tray goes untouched for the moment. "How's Kharon's newest ECO?" asks Thorn of Ivory, a narrow smirk on his face. Komnenos leans back in his chair, lighting a cigarette. Who needs food when there's nicotine?

Well played, Poet. Timon's about to protest, but any words he might say in response are silenced by the fact that someone more inclined to mocking him is now about to sit down beside him. Instead, he gives Thorn the usual good-morning-grunt before scooting over, closing his book as he does. "Ready to make nice with the CAG, I suppose." Innocence fades into a smile of sorts. "How he settled upon me as the biggest behavioral problem aboard this vessel, I have no idea."

And of course, Roubani does what he tends to do when the number of people in a conversation goes above two and is a social venture rather than a nerdy one - he goes quiet. Returning his attention to his tea, he blows gently across the surface of it and listens.

Still staring down at the tray, Wil's eyelids flutter. Flicker. They droop and narrow as he adjusts the green satchel slung across his shoulder with a slight, matching the unbuttoned duty green jacket signifying that he's some degree of off-duty. He prods something that looks like it may be reconstituted mushy peas with a crook of his finger. Bleh. "Huh." It didn't bite back, so this is as good as it's going to get. Plodding through the rest of the line with a weary sigh, he swings around and makes his way down from the line into the seating area. Looks good. That looks good. That looks — eh? Well. People. Might as well stick with the devil you know.

A cloud of smoke spills through the air above Anton's untouched tray. "Hm," he grunts at Timon. "Maybe it's been too long since I broke something or said something in the wrong tone of voice. I must be going soft, if you're the behavioral issue." Thorn shakes his head with a small chuckle.

"Maybe you should proposition the other captain this afternoon," Timon suggests, scooting over some more: anything to escape the processed and reprocessed and re-reprocessed sludge on Rebound's incoming tray. His right hand tugs on the schematics he's working on, adding another few black blots to his thumb; his left reaches once more for his coffee, which he sips again to wet his tongue. "Slide me that protein bar, Thorn?" It's lying in front of the man, half-eaten.

Roubani, well. He's quiet through the camraderie, gradually gaining that sense again that he probably shouldn't be here. He focuses his attention on his tea, pulling his calculator and cigarettes from his front pocket and setting them down.

Matto sneaks in, scavenger-like, in hunt of something more edible than last time he'd wandered in. Not much luck, on that score, of course, but he spots a clutch of dudes hanging out, and, settling for some (coffee?), he shuffles on in that direction.

Plod, plod, plod, clomp. Balancing the tray on one open hand, there's another weary sigh as Willem kicks out a chair near Timon and the others. Timon's seen the slop. He knows the Fear. Hooking the chair leg with his boot, he pulls it out and then leans over to set said tray down with one hand with the aplomb of an embarassed circus performer. This done, he settles in, wordlessly. He blinks down at the slop once more.

"Perhaps I will," replies Thorn deadpan. "Because that worked so well the first…" With that, Komnenos trails off right in the middle of too much information. "Never mind," he says with a slight but sudden flush as he attacks his cigarette. He reaches for the folder he'd come in with and slides it over to Timon. "Here. Put this together for you." Almost as an afterthought, Timon's half eaten protein bar follows the folder over.

Roubani is watching Timon and Thorn with growing awkwardness at being in their space, a glance sent to the hatch. His eyes shift absently away towards the wall, then up towards Willem. "Price." His back makes a soft crack as he sits up a little bit.

"Lieutenant Roubani." Wil notes, in response at the greeting. Despite the use of rank, it's more friendly than formal in all honesty. Well, a guarded sort of friendly. The lone active Viper pilot scans around at his table-mates a moment afterwards, maybe half-smiling for a second or so before digging into his mushy peas. Maybe they should have stayed frozen.

Matto besets the table, quite suddenly but with a dearth of huggage, possibly because of the steaming liquid contained in the mug he's holding. "Guys," he greets causally enough, not really seeming quite awake. But still there's a genial smile there for the table before his lips set to the task of sipping from the coffee, then pulling away into a gesture of disgust, his nose wrinkling up and eyes squeezing shut as he puts the mug down in front of him.

"Kissy." Timon gives the totally groovy dude a wave before turning his attention back to Thorn's gift. "I'm surprised you didn't label this the Idiot's Guide to Electronic Warfare," he observes dryly, having opened it to the table of contents. That protein bar diminishes in size as he takes another bite, this one larger than before; the bland substance is washed down by a similarly-large gulp of coffee. "I've got most of the basics down, believe it or not; just need to refresh my memory on polarities. And Rebound. Are you really going to eat that?"

Roubani offers Willem a half-smile in return, and lifts a hand in a sort of wave to Matto. He winds his fingers around the tea mug after that, eyes flickering to the folder that Timon has, and his attention immediately off the random socialising.

Matto returns the little wave once his face has gotten itself untangled from the mad 'ick' it was endeavoring to express, easing back into his usual flavor of quietly pleased, or, at the very least, uncomplaining. "Sorry I didn't get to stop by for tea," he murmurs to the Poet, taking a further sip of the coffee, pulling less of a face the more his tastebuds resign themselves to lying back and thinking of Gemenon. Then, Timon's comment rousing some curiosity in him, "Oh, is it time for ECM training again?"

"Don't mock rudimentary manuals. Tell me there wasn't an 'Idiot's Guide to Hangar Deck Landings at one point. Or if there's not, tell me there shouldn't have been." Wil finally pipes up, his first conversational contribution beyond that one general greeting. Roubani's smile was basically delivered a tentative return, before he defensively adds, "And this? This is healthy. Of course I'm going to eat it." Even if his next reaction is to knit his brows, staring down at the tray before dipping his fork in it. This could be bad. Oh well, who lives forever? He takes a bite. Grimaces.

"Thought about it," Komnenos replies to Timon, "but it didn't sound very… professional." He leans, the back of his chair bracing agaisnt the wall. "Trying t' turn a new leaf and all, y' know?" He blinks innocently at that; what, you don't believe him? "But I didn't come t' give you another lecture. Everything you need t' know is there. You know the basics already. So read it." He gestures with his cigarette as he talks, which only widens the corona of smoke forming in his vicinity, his smirk widening. "Thought you were smart."

"Just for me, Kissy. The CAG's seen a few too many buddy comedies in his career, I think." Timon will let others elaborate further, instead flipping through all the files his ECO's collected on his behalf. Every so often he'll pause to consider a paragraph or other — a note on the 'electrical properties of air' here, an observation on 'how to increase echo strength' there — before moving on. He does chuckle under his breath, though, as Wil stirs his food and Thorn talks about leaves. "We all have our delusions," he notes.

"It's alright," Roubani assures Matto, with a faint smile. The first words he's said since greeting Thorn; he seems to be having a rather shy day as the group keeps expanding in size and volume. His eyes turn to Willem's food, brow lofting slightly.

"Delusions. I live by them." Willem facetiously declares with a bit of a point of pride. "Personally if we had something resembling synthetic coriander to spare this could be edible." He notes after forcing down a mouthful. He drifts a couple fingers to the viscous vegetable, in indication.

Matto turns toward Thorn for a moment when Ivory very clearly leaves the explanation up to someone else and Kissy pins Toes over there as the most likely person to provide it. "Wait, so… the CAG's giving out ECM training orders?" This… faintly brushes Kissy the wrong way, as is evident in the tone of the words. But that vague bristle is about all the rise the news gets out of him. He repays the Poet's smile with a gentle one of his own. "Soon," he nods to punctuate the word.

Thorn's cigarette is finished, and he's put off the inevitable for too long; the butt is stamped out in an ashtray and Thorn begins to push his own food around on the plate. He's not sure what it is, only that it was obviously intended to imitate a meat dish and it is accompanied by something green. With a doleful sigh, he takes a bite, chewing slowly. His eyes catch Kissy's glance, and Thorn jabs his fork in Timon's direction. "This one pissed off the CAG or something. Again." Chew, chew. Thorn isn't the most couth, as he talks in mid bite, but he's at least gracious enough or skilled enough to avoid spewing food all over the table. "Now he's going t' spend some time as Marek's personal backseater."

Roubani finishes off the tea he's got in front of him. There is no end to the tea in Poet's life. He pushes the mug away and lights a cigarette, moving his hand just under the edge of the table so the smoke doesn't go everywhere willy nilly. He glances at Thorn, glances at Kissy, glances at Timon. Huh. "What…did you do?" 'What could you possibly have done, YOU?', that's the kind of tone that tinges the otherwise polite question.

A brief snap of his folder announces that Timon's done with his impromptu review session, or thinks he's gotten as much work done as he can in a setting like this. "What Thorn said, minus the attendant humiliating implications he intends you to draw," the pilot clarifies, settling back into banter with a grin. Schematics are slotted into the side of the binder, followed shortly by his pen. "As for me, I'd settle for protein that doesn't come in bars," says Timon, his irritation clearly exaggerated if not feigned entirely. "Could at least mold and color this mush to look more like steak and less like a — I don't know. What do you think this looks like?" He polishes off his snack anyway; then, while munching: "I forgot to say hello to him in Sickbay."

Eyelids rise and fall at the gossip. Brows flicker. Wil takes a few other bites, apparently seriously putting the 'Mess' in 'Mess hall.' Gossipmongers. Hmph! He would never take part in such things. "This is basically reconstituted vegetable protein. Except I think the constitution's a little weak," he politely, if dryly narrates after swallowing. "And you did what?" Rebound's little visions of the CAG are rolling around in his head, here.

Matto rolls his eyes in mild irritation at Thorn's explanation— not irritated at Thorn, of course, just the CAG. Timon's further explanation draws out a sound from him that's one part cough, one part laugh, one part 'oh my gods, what a twit.' Yeah, it's there, if you listen closely.

Roubani clears his throat quietly at that explanation from Timon. He doesn't seem surprised, per se, though he refrains from showing much else. "Are you sure it's…just that incident, Ivory?" Come now, lad. "That was ages ago."

"Pretty sure it was. Or at least, that was the one that started the whole thing. I was stopping by to see Case a few days after Flash picked us up on Scorpia. Poet, I think you were there? You were giving her all those girly magazines with sex advice." This is Timon's subtle revenge for avoiding his question earlier. "Anyway, I decided to say hello to the pilot in traction instead of the ranking officer in the room. As it turned out, that — " Veined hands crinkle up his protein bar's wrapper. "That was a mistake." QED. "So was pointing out the pettiness of the resulting talking-to."

Judging from the raspy hint of growling at the back of Komnenos' laughter, he seems to share Matto's opinion. Not that he's likely to say so, of course, in front of his obviously consternated pilot. "You know how Marek can be, Poet." Thorn speaks quieter now, in an almost conspiratorial tone. "Especially when his feathers get ruffled."

Meanwhile, Wil's look is just confused. He's observing, listening, more than he's really telling here, but the confusion is, as one might say, painted all over his face. There's a little twitch of his lips to one side and a series of deep wrinkles that pop up on his forehead as he squints, taking in Timon's tale of woe. Of course, the bit about the magazines earns a cough. A cough that might be holding a snicker back for Roubani's sake. Really. "I've done some minor shit around the CAG and have never seen that." This is presented less as a statement of defense than a simple fact, given its plainness. Another gulp of the chow. His eyes then dart between Thorn and Matto, ending on Matto. At least -that- incident he was there for.

"I don't honestly care how surly he wants to be," Kisseus says, aloud, this time, "But Torch -never- disrupted the Captain's training or mission orders for us. She recognized that we were a squadron and the Captain was in command. I hope one day Marek will give her the same basic consideration."

"So there was another incident," Roubani points out, not at all triumphantly. "Not that I'm defending anyone in the equation." The 'revenge' from Timon gets totally ignored, NEENER. A glance at Thorn and he clears his throat again. "I'd have to argue, I don't think he does it to be petty at the end of it all. Again not defending, per se, as I can't always say I agree with the methods he's used, but no I don't believe he'd have you on ECM duty solely and only because oops, you forgot to say hello to him. Now what exactly has gone on since then…" He shrugs. Or if he's told Legacy.

Coming in from the line it seems Rabbit's tall form can be picked out-which is no real hard feet in and of itself. He sticks out like a mucking knitting needle in a stack of otherwise shorter and more slender needles of the day. Food piled on, and a cup of coffee to go with the slight bit of dark circles underneath his eyes. And without hesitation he's coming to sit down with the other pilots, lookin' to wedge himself by someone familiar, and given those wrangled around-it could be any one of them.

However the unlucky partner as it might be Willem. And down he plunks. A slight look over towards Matto, before going round ye olde table collectively. "Wot we talking about?"

"The Captain agreed to this new arrangement," Timon clarifies, Rabbit's arrival getting a nod before he continues. The can of worms having been opened, Ivory now does his best to close it, looking vaguely chastened. "Anyway. I've known COs who would have busted me down to crewman for less. This — if nothing else, it means he listened to what I said to him." On that he doesn't elaborate further. "I'm just going to do my time and take my shots. A few more 'yes, sirs' and 'no, sirs' from me won't hurt anybody, even if I do think they're insignificant in the grand scheme of things." Crumpled-up foil is placed rather delicately on the folder in front of him.

Well HELLO RABBIT. Wil, digging into his substandard, creepy-looking food shovels in another pile of pea-slop and shoots Hale a pensive, but friendly enough look. "Rabbit." He says, succintly after another bite. "We're. Actually, I'm really not -sure- what we are talking about," he elaborates, with a diplomatic cast to his tone. He nods at Timon with a slight twitch of his mouth as he amends, "I always found those little honorifics to be the easiest. Just say 'sir' as some kind of nicety and go about it. I wasn't out to prove anything."

Thorn listens to the chatter going on around the table, but holds his tongue for the moment. It's obvious he doesn't like at least some of what he's hearing, judging from the furrow in his brow and the sneer forming on his lips. For the time being, though, there's no rant forthcoming, and Thorn simply nods in greeting to Hale, his expression softening somewhat at his friend's arrival. "Oi, Rabbit. Talkin' about petty nonsense and senior officers. As usual."

Roubani now seems to notice that Hale and Thorn are both at the table. Hale, Thorn, Hale, Thorn. He takes a drag off his cigarette and shoots Matto a look, his finger twitching to indicate those men. "So. Still think you were right?"

There's a look back towards Thorn and a gri coming right up there to the fellow piker, a bob of his head before Hale is shoveling a bite of what appears to be yellow egg like substance into his mouth. Its probably just coloured protien, but Rabbit will hold it is egg to some degree. "Ah, so about what we usually all bitch about.." a snicker, before he's raising a brow back towards Thorn. "How y' been Bro?" asked to the ECO, before he's nodding towards Willem. "Seems we got put together, lookin' forward t' flyin with you mate-Oi, Ivory.." said over as eyes lift in Timon's direction "Err-may I ask you sumthin?" he'll wait before carrying on. He does have some manners.

Matto was seriously -not- just staring at the same thing. Well, okay, maybe a little. It's enough to settle down whatever hackles may have been threatening to begin to think about rising and replace them with a dutifully amused look. He shoots the glance at the Poet at approximately the same instant that Poet does: synchronized glancing— an obvious sign they've been spending too much time together. "Only one way to find out for sure."

"I'm coming up on ten years in the service and I still don't quite appreciate the implications of that 'superior' part of 'superior officer'. And I'll be the first to admit that my manner can be interpreted as arrogance, so." Timon's confession is accompanied by a look into the depths of his mug, swirling the coffee around in little circles as he does. Cheek jerks slightly at Roubani's question, as if he's trying to hold back a grin. "Want me to get out a pen and paper?" he wonders, before glancing over to Hale. "Shoot."

"Don't have a pack of the CAG's cigarettes to use as extra incentive, do you?" Roubani says back to Matto, continuing this cryptic line of comparison between Thorn and Hale with some obvious amusement. Timon's jumping into it makes him bite his lip hard to keep from smiling too much. "Actually, I'm dead curious." So there.

"Ten packs," Timon interjects, humming under his breath. "It was ten."

"I look forward to being my usual pain in the ass." Wil shoots back at Hale amid forkfuls, before he finally gives up, staring down at the mess on his tray. His lips curl high enough to be considered a grin, at least on the right side of his face. "Don't think I have that many bad reviews. Glad for the assignment, though." At least this last part is genuine.

There's something of a shrug. "I used to feel they were untouchably superior, Ivory." Wil continues with his last topic, after a long, thoughtful pause and a drawn-in breath. "Then I just figured out that the best of them have a job I don't really want." Notice he didn't bother describing the ones lower than the 'best of them.'

Hale slightly looks back between the threeman round robin going on between Matto, Roubani, and Timon. "What are ya'll yammerin' about?" a sniff for a second before he is shovelling in food, before he's chuckling back towards Rebound "Oi, I like you mate- so I think It'll be a fun assignment-bugger if anyone says different." And then he's taking a sip of his coffee. Eyes back to Timon and Rabbit lowers the mug slightly- "How'd you pull ECO duty to Spider?" apparently Hale's not plugged into all of the goings ons

"I don't have ten -or- one," Kisseus replies, faintly non-sensically, "Nor any number in between the two." He looks up to the intercom and then to the Poet, giving him a low-key kind of grin. "It'll hold 'til the Poet gets back," he tells Ivory, waving it off for the moment.

Komnenos takes another bite of the… whatever it is on the plate, trying not to grimace as he does so. He chews slowly, looking back at Hale as the food forces its way down his throat. "Same as always, bro. Single and surviving somehow." There's a brief, self conscious smirk from the ECO before solemnity crosses his features once again. "You?" Komnenos' attention wanders to Matto and Roubani, a brow raised in mock suspicion as he senses himself being talked about.

"I was a vile solipsist for six months, Rebound, and that's a tough habit to break." Ivory smiles at Matto not unlike a satiated cat, eyes following Roubani's departing frame before switching back to Rabbit. "Long story," he replies, more than a little dryly.

Wil accepts Hale's compliment with a nod, and maybe a tip of his metphorical hat, if it were. He has no hat and his hand is still laden with fork, even though he spends most of his time idly stirring what's left of his food. "Very well. Eh, don't blame me if you want to rip the frakking ship-to-ship transmitter out of the Viper after our rotation's over." There's a sudden, unexpected chuckle as he then turns to finish weighing Timon's statement with a quiet 'hmm.' "Yeah. From what you've told me. I think I can see that. Of late, though, I started wondering what my own command style were to be like." He waves a dismissive hand, anticipating maybe a round of moans or groans at 'IF I WERE CAG.' "Not what I'd -do-, of course, but what my impulses would be. And it's mildly disturbing."

"I got time, believe it or not." Rabbit says back with a slight grin, but it is soon gone as food consumption becomes the main order of the day. And from Ivory he looks to Komnenos whom gets another nod, even if words don't follow for a few moments. Chewing and all "Oi, I will say Surviving, not nessecarily thrivin'. But, I am gettin along smashingly-all things considered." A chuckle there-which turns into the Lieutenant clearing his throat. There's a pause as he looks back towards Wil and a faint grin there. "Mate, I'm surprised Mooner lsten t' all the shite I talk about when we roll out-I think you'll be welcomed company-but go on an spill…I am kinda curious as to what your impulses would be."

Matto leans back, abadoning the dregs of the coffee in the cup in front of him. "Long story is right. Come to think of it you might want to start now; N might well go field strip the FTL drives and put them back together again and we might not be to the punchline before he gets back." But he's just teasing, of course, a cheeky little grin flashed in Timon's direction before he looks to Darling Willem, waiting to hear what his reign of terror will hold in store.

"That long, Kissy?" Timon still hasn't acclimated to the man's new callsign — this habit, like solipsism, is tough to break. But for Rabbit's sake, he's about to launch right back into an explanation when Rebound poses a more interesting hypothetical. "I know my impulses," he avers. "Run the other way as quickly as I possibly can, because if I gave the orders around here — " Whatever doom he has in mind is left unspoken, his gaze slipping back to his mug. "And that aside, I hate it when people bow and scrape before me like I'm one of Plato's philosopher-kings."

"Well, no worries there, Ivory," Thorn says with mock cheerfulness to his pilot, "I, for one, will never prostrate myself so." There's a sarcastic grandiosity in his tone at that. He abandons what's left of his food, choosing instead to light another cigarette. "You get far too much credit for being able t' regurgitate dusty old quotes, anyway."

Wil's response to the inevitible questions that come in response to his ill-advised volunteering is another sigh, as he sets his fork down and steeples his fingers together above the tray. "That's -one- of my impulses, Ivory." But only one. To Rabbit. "You've been warned, Rabbit. You've been warmed. I'm percepibly, well, more -dense- than Mooner." He clears his throat and shrugs in the unbuttoned duty greens jacket. "Let's take a subject here. Unauthorized physical violence. First pilot who precipitates an act of physical aggression upon another crewmember in a venue other than the gym." His tongue clicks as he opens his mouth, expression carefully neutral and composed. "First time, said pilot will be relegated to cleaning the skidmarks out of Lance Corporal Swift's grollies with vinegar, a toothbrush, and recycled water. In public." He moves on. "Second time, he or she will have to report to the Chief for a shift wearing a pink tutu and must report to her at all times as 'Sir' even if he or she has to scrub the tool room with a toothbrush. Bonus points if the Chief was sitting on a crate, sipping martinis while giving directions, but I know that's improbable. That woman doesn't even know what a 'mixer' is." His lips twitch as a smile breaks into his features. "Third time? Well, the brig. I'd get to pick the cellmate." The ambiguousness of who the cellmate would be is left to heighten the ominous quality of the threat.

Willem coughs, a slight amendment. "Any guesses who the cellmate would be?"

"I have faith in Ivory's tale telling skills. Believe it or not, I believe the cutty could be a right good coach. Which-" there is a point of one finger in Timon's direction from Hale. "We're havin' a meetin soon to get the league finally up an goin' since everything is all squared aboard here." IE we're not having to save half the ship from Scorpia. However, when Willem goes off on his impulses there's a faint smile from Rabbit and he leans back a little for another sip of coffee, while keeping eyes on the junior officer. "Alright-But, a question mate-" and Rabbit is already spring boarding back in. "Would you ground them before brig time?" Ahh you see where as the embarrasment of doing those things are great, the grounding is the crippling blow to a pilot. "Hmm." as for who the cellmate would be. "I can think of a few people I'd not like t' be cramped in a cell with-But, I am not gonna take a gander on that one. You kow, just in case." A wink is given Willem's way before Hale's taking another sip of his coffee.

Fortunately Kissy happens to be both his old callsign -and- his actual name, so there's no real confusion involved. "By the time I'm CAG the rest of you will all be dead already, so… nothing you all have to worry about. The ensigns better start working on their juggling skills, though. 'Cause we probably won't have much in the way of birds to fly by then, either, and we'll have to keep each other entertained, somehow." He stops and takes a listen to Darling Willem's platform, though he lifts an index finger quietly, "You'd put someone else in the brig other than the person who misbehaved?" he asks.

"I wasn't aware anybody gave me much credit at all," Ivory rejoins, tipping his head to his ECO. "Apart from that — what was her name again, Rebound? Miss Mousy from CIC, who swoons over the intellectual sort?" The lieutenant's cup is clasped almost reverently between his hands as he sniffs at the grinds within, using it to cover a few ill-advised bouts of laughter during Wil's long and spiraling explanation. After all, the stuff smells better than it tastes. "I'd suggest Thorn," is his contribution to the debate. "Though that'd probably be deadly, what with all the secondhand smoke and all." Really, man. Cancer kills. "Platonic Solids, Rabbit," is what comes next. "I have the uniforms planned out and everything: cube, tetrahedron, icosahedron … " Timon's only half-kidding.

Roubani returns to the mess hall not long after, carrying a hefty new folder of work to be done. Joy. Drifting back to the seat he'd vacated after securing a fresh cup of tea, he sets the folder down with a soft thump and settles on the bench. The winding of the conversation makes one dark brow go up a little.

"Whoever served as 'cellmate' - They'd be getting a bribe. A day of leave. Maybe some fine Aquarian Cigars and cheap booze." Wil says towards Matto. And there's a little wink towards Thorn there at his mention of 'suggestions.' Of course, by saying this and -not- saying who he'd stick the unfortunate perpetrator of random act of violence with in his little 'if I were CAG' megalomania fantasy he basically just did. Finally, the snicker gets the better of him. "I suppose that's tasteless." He mutters, sounding a little abashed. He shoots Hale a look. "Grounding? Nah. That would be number 4, I suppose, which ultimately demonstrates that beneath the frustrated exterior I have an extremely soft heart which would probably get taken advantage of time and time again. So there goes my whole plan, really." He waves a hand dismissively. Riffing on Ivory's interjection, he coughs a little. "Yeah. That little Ensign they picked up off Scorpia. The one I almost steamrolled the other day, Thorn." This involves a little look to the ECO, as he explains. "She about melted into some kind of incoherent puddle at the idea of our erstwhile Scholar here's Doctorate plan." He gestures towards Timon. "Speaking of which? Who the Hells asked you to dinner? You never told me."

Matto doesn't seem particularly disturbed by the apocalyptic notions churning amongst his thinkmeats. I mean, it's already the apocalypse, so… one more ship full of dead folk isn't that big a deal, right? As it is, he offers the Poet a warm, sedate smile on his way back over, sliding subtly closer on the bench and peering at the file folder. "You really know how to earn that paycheck, don't you," he teases quietly, then looks up toward Ivory, "Dinner? Like, a date type of thing? Hey, slick," he tells him.

Godsdammit, Rebound. Godsdammit, Matto. "Incoherent puddle?" asks Ivory in the hope of getting the pair of them started on that tangent. And just in case that fails, Timon does his absolute best to change the subject, pulling out a few laminated diagrams from his folder before looking expectantly at Roubani and Matto. "Well. Shall we conduct this experiment?" he proposes. "Though I should say, before we begin, that I fully expect to see the results from last night replicated here."

Komnenos snorts. "See what I mean? I'm the one with the master's degree, and you're the one that gets the credit as the high-minded scholar, y' plodding hack." That's to Ivory, naturally. "And if you're in hack, secondhand smoke is the least of your worries. Though I have it on fairly good authority that I'm not a bad sort t' share a cell with." Thorn, cell, what? Must have been a college thing. Komnenos turns to Willem, an eyebrow raised skeptically. "Aren't you a pushover. Four offenses, then you get around t' grounding them?" He shakes his head. "A pilot gets into a fight, potentially rendering themselves or others unfit for combat duty? I'd start with grounding."

Roubani sucks his teeth at Matto, with no hint of malice. "If paperwork could actually solve problems, the universe would be a perfect place." He lifts his cup to sip his tea. Yeah, the corner of his mouth pulls into a big smirk as Willem tries again on the dinner angle, but he's not looking at Ivory. His eyes do appear over the rim of the cup as Timon attempts to get the game started, and he clears his throat quietly. "Well then, by all means."

There's a look back towards Roubani as he joins the table again before nodding to the young man. "Alright-so what was this about cigarettes?" Hale asks finally before he's looking between the others and then yes, he is looking back between the others asking about some experiment. A shake of his head before he's finishing his coffee and taking time to reach into a fatigue pants pocket for a pack of cigarettes, two pulled out-one placed in his lips, the other rolled over towards Poet. A payback for the other night.

"Bankruptcy laws, Thorn. That's my story and I'm sticking to it." And with an injured look on his face, Timon hands over the schematics, one to Thorn, one pushed across the table to Rabbit. "Poet — Kissy — which one of you wants to do the honors and emcee?"

Matto's features soften from a keen interest to something more affectionate and warm as Ivory tries to change the subject— twice. "Oh, are you two being shy and trying to stay out of the gossip mill? Fair enough. But where are you going, anyhow? Not so I can go spy; I'm just curious where date-esque dinnars are to be got hereabouts."

"Sometimes a problem in the Berthings isn't a problem in the cockpit. I was throwing a bone to competence and pragmatism here." Wil finally says, in mid-sigh, eyes narrowing at Thorn. "I've seen enough bullshit to be able to gauge that. In any case, some of my kind can be fairly fist-happy. You're also neglecting the veritable horror of the previous three punishments." He hefts his tray and decides, that for now, he's had enough of this slop and stands. He lolls his head back towards Ivory now, noting, maybe, just maybe, he didn't really get an answer. Of course, he's too much of a gentleman to ask again with his -words-.

From the smirk that had graced Roubani's face, he probably isn't so much avoiding the gossip mill as he IS the gossip mill. But for Ivory, all for Ivory, he says nothing about it when the man's needled again. "You go on and explain it, Ivory. It's your game, and I'd hardly want to accidentally influence the outcome."

Hale looks back towards Timon, as his hand moves to take up the material passed over, all the while eyeing the respective ring leaders in the mini experiment. A roll of his shoulders for a second, before the taller pilot is lighting his cigarette, and taking a deep, deep drag. "Well, Ivory.." coming out in a puff of smoke "If you need a place for a date, lemme suggest th' lounge or somewhere with not too many eyes. Even if you're eating messhall shite, its th' atmosphere of not havin that many bloody eyes on you that counts."

"Certainly not here, Kissy, that's for damn sure. Fellow can't even get t' work with t' peace and t' quiet." Timon's voice dips lower as he tries to approximate his ECO's trademark scowl and accent, failing miserably — as expected. "Or the Lounge," he observes. "As I believe poor Rebound can testify." A fair bit of mischief colors Timon's grin; then, Poet — dear Poet — gives him the out he needs to deflect Wil's question. "If I explained it, I'd bore them to tears. Kissy — how about it?"

"Horror, bah. Mildly unpleasant chores that can be laughed about afterwards," Thorn says firmly to Wil. "I've no arguments against being pragmatic, but still." Any further arguing, though, is stopped when stuff gets pushed at him. "Here, what's this?" A brow furrowed at Timon. "And what's this about you and a date?" There's a barking snort from the ECO at Timon's attempt at theatrics. "Nice try."

"Ivory," Roubani says, very sweetly, "You realise the longer you stall, the more opportunity they're all going to take to keep asking you about this."

"Alright, alright," Kisseus takes up the challenge of explaining the thing, then Thorn's breaking in with more questions about the date. He looks toward Ivory, himself, "Yeah, dude, we're not getting this experiment done until you spill, looks like. So go on."

Thud. Plop. Wil's tray bits go crashing into the receptacle in an orderly fashion before he swings his satchel over his shoulder and peers towards the hatch. He's promptly considering leaving here, but takes a couple steps back towards the table, leaning against a pillar(did you know there was a pillar there? Really, there was). He gives Timon a bit of a death glare too. "Lounge. It's a great place. Really." He says, in the dryest tone he can muster, coughing at the Raptor pilot with a slight reddening of his ears which disappears moments after. "Um. Lounge isn't the best place, but it works. I think Rabbit actually made a call here, though. Even the Mess Hall can work. Just," he clears his throat with a muffle of his hand, "Don't eat the peas."

But there's a tap of his foot. "Yeah, The longer you draw this out, the more unrealistically interesting and gossip-prone it's going to make the matter, Ivory." Wil amends.

Timon knows when he's beat. A touch of red appears on his cheeks, matching the coloration of Wil's ears — but the Raptor driver's blush doesn't disappear. His eyes have found something rather interesting at the edge of his cup, at which he stares for a good five seconds before muttering something that sounds suspiciously like "Priestess."

"I've never had any trouble with the lounge m'self." Added towards Ivory, though the look given towards Wil, shows that Hale expects some form of a story from his wingman now. But, that can be something they talk about on CAP now isn't it. Better than having Hale rattle off ideas for his book, which is now in Mooner's possession. "But, bloody spill Ivory, then we can do your experiment-which I am considered myself, bloody curious about." Needless to say-Ivory is not getting out of this.

And when those words come out there's a blink "The shelia I knocked out?" and then a whistle there.

"Bo Peep?" Kisseus asks, faintly louder than maybe he ought, considering the low volume of hte original reply. "Oh, that's cool, she's kind of sweet sometimes. Have fun, guy."

Roubani takes a soft sip of tea as Timon lets spill the dark secret, faint amusement painted at the corners of his eyes. He says nothing, for some reason not the smallest bit surprised at the news.

"What frakkin' experiment?" Komnenos looks from Hale to Timon, seeming a little lost. He's been a bit withdrawn, not absorbing the conversation fully, and now, well… it looks like it got him volunteered for some kind of experiment. He was, however, paying attention to the part about Timon's budding romantic exploits, and his eyes widen at the older man's mutter. "Priestess," he states flatly. "You… and the priestess." He squints, sighing. "Really."

Well, Wil got his answer. "Shit, Ivory." That was certainly eloquent, as he says this, crossing his arms in front of his chest. He's already discarded his tray but had to just linger for this nugget of information. "Is that even legal? I mean." An eyebrow quirks in disbelief, "I'm certainly not going to be one to say anything. Maybe you can chalk it up to 'spiritual consultation' or somesuch, but. Best of -luck-, I guess." What you're all witnessing is a mixture of ex-schoolboy trepidation mixed with surprise. "Eh. Pretty enough, though, I guess. I don't know about her boss, though." He's not talking about Cygnus, probably. "Ah. Well. I guess if you want my lame advice. Talk to me later." He's not going to overshare in -this- crowd. "Heh. Reminds me of the time when I was in high school. Ol' Sister Jacquenetta and Brother Paulus apparently got into the ceremonial wine and wandered into a broom closet." Wow. That sounds a lot like the Kharon, doesn't it.

"I'll have you know that you're worse than the crotchety, disreputable fishwives of Picon," Timon declares, though the faint grin on his face testifies otherwise. "All of you. And, because I am absolutely atrocious at this, I will be requesting your advice and input now that the proverbial cat's out of the bag." Luckily for Poet, Ivory's too embarrassed to notice the look; indeed, the pilot is currently busying himself with an imaginary itch on his scalp, twisting his finger in his hair for appearance more than for effect. "We were about to conduct an experiment?" he wonders at length.

Roubani makes no offer of advice, himself. His hands fold around the mug, prayer beads gently clacking against the tabletop. His eyes shift to Thorn and then to Wil evenly, then back to Timon.

The Lords (whether you believe in them or not) have a sadistic sense of humor, don't they? Because it's at precisely that moment said priestess (apparently having having found her way into the lunchline, unnoticed, and out again) shows up at the table. She smiles at the group, tray in her hands. "What experiment?"

"I was married once mate." Hale adds for a moment "I'll give you what I can." There all simply and with that he is dropping the subject before Hale is looking back towards Timon, a brow raised "Ain't that wot you said?" Or has he finally lost his marbles?

After weeks of taking it, Wil's finally in a position to dish it out as all the mockery finally is able to roll downhill to another unfortunate victim. Delaying his exit a moment longer, the ginger-haired pilot's swaying walk takes him right up to his target as he mutters something quietly towards Timon. This delivered, his eyebrows raise and he stiffens, standing straight, his hands behind his back as he notices the aforementioned Priestess. "Huh. Bloody Kharon. This ship is just -weird.-" His usual cautious trepidation which is normally directed towards the woman is somewhat there but he lets out a snicker, his lips involuntarily grinning tightly.

Willem amends, "Uh. 'Lo, Sister.'"

Willem whispers: Storage room eleven-three-eight-beta, Deck three. I avoid that place like the plague. I've got a music player you can borrow if you want to take it along.

"Yeah," Kissy replies, clearing his throat, "So you two hatched a plot and stole ten packs of Marek's cigarettes," he informs Thorn and Rabbit matter-of-factly enough. "You left a clean crime scene? But Marek's got a bug up his bum for you, you know how he gets," he grins subtly. "He puts you two in separate cells, and you've got two choices: rat out your partner and go free, or stay quiet and hope your partner doesn't rat you out." He turns to offer Bo Peep a quiet grin, "Sorry, you're just in time for the re-run. But we've got the real thing this time." He looks back to Thorn, "I had to pretend I was you for this last night," he tells him with a jovial sort of smile.

Roubani gives Ariadne a small but warm smile. Fingers staying curled around his tea mug, he looks at Matto as the man starts explaining. "But hold on," he says quietly to Thorn and Hale. "You can't speak to each other, so don't comment yet. There is a little more detail on the punishment and options coming."

Ariadne eyeshifts at Willem's snicker, a smile tugging at her lips — though it's certainly bemused. "Hello, Lieutenant Price." She ahhs and nods at Matto's explanation. "Well, this should be interesting." She returns Poet's warm smile, before asking, "Does anyone mind if I sit?"

Hale frowns slightly there "Well, I wouldn't have stolen Marek's cigarettes..He's a friend, bloody don't steal from friends-" however this is the scenario, "But I'll play along." Hale offers, there's a look back towards Roubani and he nods all the same before he's equally looking back to Thorn. A brow raised for a moment, but no words seeing how he and Thorn are in 'separate cells.' And so he looks back towards Rounbani "Who played me?" A curious question, and a nod over towards Ariadne "By all means sister."

Komnenos looks around the table, surprised, before narrowing his eyes at Matto and Roubani. "So that's what you two were whispering about over there." Judging from the look in his eye, he's not thrilled at having Ariadne join the group, but makes no protest. Nobody else seems to have a problem, and he's not one to be THAT guy. He looks back over at Hale. "Well, I've got no such compunctions, but I also have plenty of cigarettes of my own. Don't need t' steal from the blighter." He waves a hand, forestalling any response. "Yeah, yeah, I know, experiment. So go on, explain the rest already."

Ariadne settles in at the table wherever there's room, directing another warm smile at Rabbit. "Thank you, Lieutenant Hale." She props her chin in her hand, looking between the men being examined. "Can we place bets on the outcome?" She smiles especially sweetly at Thorn — and for all that the root of it could be sarcastic, it looks entirely sincere.

Timon manages an extraordinarily casual "Hello, Priestess" before nodding at whatever Rebound whispered in his ear. He's content to let the men before him play out this scenario for now, fiddling with the crumpled ball of foil on his books.

Kai steps through the hatch, flight suited and sweaty, and in search of one thing and one thing alone: a cup of coffee. Okay, two things. He's lighting a cigarette on his way over to the coffee pot, slave to the nicotine cravings that he is.

"Right, so the punishment for getting snitched on is two weeks' hard labor. If you both snitch, you each get three days' worth of scrubbing the heads. If neither of you snitch, you both get out of jail free," Kissy gives the rest of the rules. "Aahv'ry over there will give you secret ballots for making your choices."

"Done and done," 'Aahv'ry' inserts here, nodding at the laminated schems he handed out before the experiment was so uncomfortably hijacked. "Oil pencils, too, if you need." Those he hands out now.

Roubani coughs quietly at Hale's question. Apparently the answer is 'him'. He waves a hand at the whole cigarette stealing issue. "It's merely backdrop, don't have a seizure. Anyway." He shifts in his chair, listening again to Matto. Er, not quite all right. "Wait…hold on. The punishment is two weeks' of hard labour. If neither of you talk, you end up doing one day each. If both talk, you end up doing three days of labour. Or was it five? Anyway, some mid-level sentence. But if one talks and the other doesn't, the one who talked goes completely free while the one who didn't does the full two weeks." He glances at Timon to be sure that was what the man had said.

There's a nod at the Priestess on Rebound's part. "Don't look at me. I've been saving my last three cigarettes in the back of my locker since I quit a few months ago." Wil says, although, it doesn't need to be said. He leans back and at the mention of the priestess looking for a seat, he gives the back of Timon's chair leg a little stub with the toe of his boot. "Huh. Maybe I should go to the -LOUNGE-." He mouths. With extra emphasis on the last word. "I heard the -LOUNGE- is hopping." The whole bit with the 'experiment' results in a quirk of his brow, along with the continued discussion of it. "Y'know, talking about penalties. Nah. I'm not sure the ones I suggested with be a good idea. Not even being stuffed in the brig with Le—" Well, GOSH. He falls silent as his own little unspoken joke slips out.

"Hey, Rabbit. When you're done with this, how 'bout hitting the flight deck, hmm? I've got some work to do first."

Ariadne swallows a bit of rice and reconstituted meat. She raises an eyebrow at Timon's greeting. "Lieutenant," she responds, dryly. Then both eyebrows perk at Wil's fixation on the word -LOUNGE-.

Kai glances over his shoulder at the little congregation of pilots and not-pilots nearby, brows furrowing as he tries to pick out the tone of conversation. Which is pretty much impossible from where he is. So he tucks his cigarette between his lips, and pours himself a cup of coffee instead.

"Alright.." Says Hale, before he's reaching for the pencil offered out from Ivory "Thank you.." And he is writing down his answer-before looking back up towards Roubani, as if the the difference in circumstances didn't matter as there is no change on his ballot, which is passed to Timon. "Here.." and pencil back too. A glance back over towards Willem and there's a nod. "Sure mate- I'll meet you there, Need t' finish my smoke anyway before I clamber up on deck.."

Thorn grins as the terms of the experiment are laid out, and he takes paper and pencil in hand. He chuckles sardonically and begins to scribble in his trademark spidery scrawl across the paper. Finally, after a moment, he's done, handing the paper back to Timon and taking a fresh drag from his cigarette.

Matto looks back toward Roubani, "Was there a punishment for both being quiet? Okay," he capitulates, having evidently not remembered it a-right. "That, instead."

Roubani glances at Willem at the man's remarkably unsubtle nudging of Timon. There's a glance at the full Lieutenant, then back to Matto with a slight nod. There was indeed.

"Three, five — the idea is the same. Let's just call it five for now — not that it mattered much, I see." Timon jerks forward in his chair as Rebound jabs, then jabs again, smiling almost devilishly as he receives back his papers and pencils. No comment on the Lounge, nor on the CAG's entrance — which, honestly, he hasn't seen. "Rabbit — Rabbit stays silent." Down goes one schematic face-up on the table. "And Thorn — "

Cup filled to the brim, Kai ducks his head and lifts it to his lips — after sliding the cigarette between two fingers — to take a sip of the brew. Ahh, recycled coffee grounds. Pinch your nose, and it doesn't taste half bad. He hesitates as if about to head back out, then trudges on over to the pilots' table.

Roubani nods triumphantly at Hale's answer. He looks pleased, apparently he'd roleplayed accurately during their trial run of Be Another Person last night.

"Thorn — 'stays silent while thumbing his nose at the bloody bugger'." Down goes the other paper on the table — and then, oddly enough, Timon goes silent as well, as the CAG's distinctive steps cause him to look up. "Captain," he says by way of greeting. OHSHIT.

There's a bit of a resigned defensiveness on Wil's part as he catches Roubani's look, and just shrugs. Poor Roubani wouldn't understand. Or maybe he would, but he isn't talking in any case. Finally Rebound gets to spread it around a little, even if it is like beating up the weakest kid on the playground — when you're the second weakest. He finally gives a little shake of his head at the game after giving Hale something of a casual salute. "See ya then, Rabbit. Better yet. See you all." He turns around from his comfortable spot leaning towards the pillar and makes his way back up towards the exit, considering coffee. Fumbling, O HAI CAG. Spotting Kai, he straightens a little. "Afternoon, sir." He summons up in a quiet but steady tone of voice.

Thorn nods gracefully at Hale as the Viper pilot's answer is revealed. He says nothing, though, simply grinning as Timon reads his answer. That grin, though, dies a sudden and painful death as Kai himself approaches, and Thorn straightens in his chair, no longer leaning against the back of the wall. "Um. Captain."

Ariadne bites down on her knuckle, smiling around it. She clears her throat and adopts a more appropriate pose. "Good afternoon, Captain Marek," she offers pleasantly.

Hale laughs there for a moment around his cigarette before he is looking to Thorn. A nod as he's reaching across the table to dap knuckles with the ECO, whislt letting his cigarette hang limply in his mouth. "That's right-never sell another brother out." said simply, before he's looking up and over towards Kai and the fist falls flat on the table as the cigarette comes to stand slightly at attention. Drag, pluck, ash into empty coffee cup. "Spider." intoned back to the CAG with a nod of his head, and finally a grin.

Matto waits for it… waits for it. "Yah!" he calls out in a jovially triumphant shout, lifting up a hand to high-five the Poet in a mildly exultant moment. But then everyone's Captaining and he turns his attention in that direction. "Captain," he chucks out on top of the pile of honorifics.

Roubani was totally raising a hand to not leave Matto hanging, but then they're all CAGGED. He glances up as Kai's presence seems to turn every head. The sight of the Captain sparks a glance at his watch, checking the time before he nods to the man. "Sir." Matto just gets a nudge with his elbow instead.

"Lieutenant Price," accompanies a curt nod from Marek. He doesn't salute, because it's an off duty area. And also because he has a cup of coffee in his hand. Pulling to a halt as he reaches Willem's recently-vacated chair, he spins it around and drops down to straddle it. "Boys," is added as a general greeting to the table, with a polite "Sister," tacked on for posterity. He, of course, has no idea whatsoever what's being discussed, so he merely smokes and sips his coffee for the time being.

"Take it easy, Rebound," offers Ivory. "And thanks for the tip." The man's hand has gone rather still, covering the foil ball on top of his folder; his other hand clutches tightly at his coffee cup, knuckles whitening incrementally. But for all his self-control, Timon can't help a pleased smile. Whether that's for Matto and Kissy or Komnenos and Hale, though, he doesn't quite say, except to repeat, equally simply: "Never sell another brother out."

There's a smile on Thorn's face as he bumps fists with Hale. Dodged a bullet there, it seems, as Kai doesn't seem to know or care what's being discussed. He quirks an eyebrow at Matto. "So, that mean you did an accurate impression of me?" he asks with a sardonic grin.

Ariadne sips her water and notes of the outcome, "I would have won money."

As he passes the CAG, there's just a little, bemused shake of Wil's head as he plods towards the hatch.

Matto lifts both brows in a brief quirk across toward Thorn, accompanied by a warm smile: "I always knew you were a man of impeccable moral fiber." The words are perched precariously in tone between utter sincerity and outright teasing, and are probably meant to function to some degree on both levels.

Hale looks back towards Roubani as hand is drawn back from the dap. And there's a raised brow given over to the Snipe, after all he is curious if Nadiv got him correctly, but there are no words to vocalize it. And with that eyes slide back towards the CAG and there's a nod. "Howsit sir?" instead of mate given, but the tone would indicate it none the less.

"Another nail in the coffin of explanatory theory," says Timon, grinning a bit at the priestess' remark. "And though it might sound like gloating, I will say I called the results beforehand." Thorn, in particular, gets a satisfied look as Ivory tosses that little foil ball in the air, catching it a few seconds before it comes down. "I believe in you, see."

Ariadne rests both her elbows on the table. "Until you have reproducible results, Lieutenant, it's not science."

And everything thus proven so wonderfully, Roubani has nothing more to say on the topic. He finishes the last of his tea and pushes his cup aside, catching Hale's look. There's a simple nod. Yes, Virginia, there was a right answer. And that allows him to slide back into a few moments of pensiveness.

Kai still doesn't comment on the game, or the conclusion of such, being played. His brows raise slightly over his coffee cup, which is set down before he looks toward Hale. "Rough week on the hangar deck," he murmurs, swiping the back of his hand across his mouth. Classy guy that he is. "We've got another bird down, and a few mechanics are out of commission after a chemical leak in the machine shop." His eyes flicker toward Timon, then across to Roubani. "Sorry I'm running a little late, Lieutenant. Let me finish this smoke, and we'll hit the sims."

"Unfortunately, I don't think a real clinical trial would be entirely — " Timon searches for the word, tossing ball into cup before covering it with his hand. "Practical," is what he comes up with, with a sideways look at the CAG. "Chemical spill, huh." The man tsks; then: "What was the problem with the bird, Captain?"

"Impeccable moral fiber, eh?" There's a surprised browraise over at Matto before Thorn shifts his eyes to Timon. "Believe in what? My backwoods sense of honesty, or my affinity for thumbing my nose at senior officers?" That's said in a deadpan.

The reminder of impending sim time sparks a small change in Roubani's posture, a little tension curling up tightly in his shoulders. He gives Kai a single, formal nod. "Yes, sir." There's then a faint chuckle at Thorn's question to Timon, mostly well-hidden.

Ariadne states, in answer to Thorn, "Yes." And sips her water.

Timon does his damnedest to resist a laugh at his ECO's question. "All of the above," he suggests. Foil rattles inside of steel as he moves his cup on top of his folder, the cover of which he examines with something like idle curiosity.

"Faulty landing gear," the Captain explains, somewhat diffidently. Smoke's exhaled through his nostrils, and the tip of his nose scratched with a thumbnail. There's either dirt, or grease under it. Mm. "Took out the whole undercarriage when it came in." Blue eyes rest upon Roubani for a long while, simply observing him while Kai fritters away his cigarette.

Matto leans back a little bit, not saying anything further to Thorn, but keeping a fond sort of gaze on him for a moment before he tunes into the conversation between Marek and the Poet, offering the latter a bright smile, "You'll be splendid," he tells him, "Even if you're not, right away," he adds, in his usual faintly counterintuitive fashion.

Hale raises a brow towards Thorn for a moment before he is leaning back. Actually staying out of this little conversation while taking time to give another drag, before he himself is rising up to take his tray to the line there-after all, he has to go and meet up with Willem for some daring heroics…or standard CAP procedures.

Roubani looks right back at Kai for a few moments, as if the man's eye contact were a challenge to be met. There's even a little quirk of brow. Yeeeees? Then his attention shifts to Matto. "Thank you," he says under his breath, and then nods politely to the departing Hale.

"Too many combat landings, maybe," Ivory theorizes idly in response to the CAG, though his brow does furrow as he considers the implications of such a landing. Fingers twist at a bit of stubble on his chin. "How's the pilot, sir?" And then, to Poet, in support of Matto: "'A few months later we'll do it all again'," he murmurs, more than a little obliquely, but no explanation seems forthcoming: one of their number is leaving. "Let me know when that Pyramid meeting happens, Rabbit. Thanks for playing along."

Thorn, too, begins to fall silent, once again tilting back in his chair to lean against the wall as he smokes. He grabs his cup, taking a drink of whatever it is inside. There's a wave to Hale as the Leonan departs. "Fly well, eh?" His eyes shift slowly over to Kai. "Captain," he begins stiffly. "I'd like a moment of your time later, sir, when you have one t' spare."

There doesn't seem to be any challenge, whatsoever, in the CAG's gaze. Just his usual mild contemplation, which shifts presently to the departing Hale. "Good hunting, Rabbit. Happy to help with whatever you need for that league, by the way. Just don't ask me to compete with these kids." He almost smiles. Almost. To Timon, "The pilot's fine. She's got a good head on her shoulders. Bit shaken up, nothing more."

*flick* A tiny wad of paper is flicked Timon's way for no explicable reason. It might have come from Ariadne's direction, but the priestess is looking remarkably interested in her food. She looks up and offers Rabbit a smile as he departs, however. "Have a good evening, Lieutenant Hale."

Kai adds, to Thorn, "Sure. Come grab me after CAP tonight."

Hale nods to them that offer their goodbyes "Will do mates. Keep er clean." offered to the other pilots and the CAG. There's a slight grin back towards Thorn before he's patting the ECO's shoulder as he disappears off. The priestess gets a little wave, before he's moving on.

Roubani nods slightly to Timon. Whatever Timon was saying with that oblique phrase, he got it. "I should wash my hands," he comments to nobody in particular. Hm. Anyway, it gets him starting to stand, and he comments to Thorn with a very slight smile, "Don't think I've forgotten about the offer of experimenting." His getting out of his chair leans him closer to Timon, who he comments something to in a low voice, then picks up his mug and his insane pile of work folders. Matto's chair leg gets a tap with his foot. "I'll see you later?"

The doors to the mess open and Castor Leda steps into the room, he is in his sweats and he probably smells slightly, in fact he must have been in the gym because his hands are wrapped up as if he has been boxing. He doesn't look around the room for once as much as he signs for his food and makes a beeline to get something to eat.

"Good to hear that, Captain." And then Ivory falls silent, his mood suddenly more contemplative than it's been throughout the conversation. His brown eyes go half-closed as his chin settles on the back of his palm, which he twists around it for a few quiet moments. That serene reverie is only disturbed by the sudden impact of paper against forehead, causing him to look up in evident surprise. Curly hair flops about on his head, some of it perhaps catching Poet's face as the man leans in for a whisper. The acknowledgment is brief: just a simple syllable — "Mm" — almost imperceptible in the noise of a rapidly-filling mess.

Matto fiddles with the mug of coffee, now for the most part empty and for the rest cold and gritty. He's not much of a fidgiter, by trade, but there it is. He seems to be contemplating vacating, and in the middle of these contemplations the Poet up and gets ready to go, and he looks up and to the side, making eye contact and giving an affable nod, "Yah, I'll be around. Let me know how things go," he tells the Poet with a quiet smile, "I'd better get gone, myself," he makes that vaguest of all excuses, standing and taking his mug with him in turn. "See you, guys," he offers the rest. "Captain Marek." And he's off!

Thorn nods curtly to Kai, standing up as well. "Right, then, t' work," he announces, roughly shoving the chair back under the table and picking up his tray. "I haven't forgotten either," he says with a similarly slight smile to Roubani. "I'm at the point where I could use a guinea pig, anyway." There's a wink as Thorn heads for the door.

"Thorn," calls Timon, before the man departs.

Ariadne snerks on a bit of rice as the little paper bit hits the mark TOO square. She takes a sip of water, then lifts a hand to Roubani. "Lords keep you, Nadiv."

That's all Roubani had to say to Timon, at least in public. He makes a motion of tipping an invisible hat towards Ariadne and then he's off. To wash his hands.

"Eh?" Thorn stops in his tracks, turning and looking expectantly at Timon.

"I never said thanks," Ivory observes, before he looks at the giggling priestess askance. So there's the culprit. But no punishment seems forthcoming as Timon's attention returns to his ECO. "So. Thanks."

Thorn's eyebrows fold in confusion. "Whatever for?" He turns around fully, watching and waiting for Timon's answer with his arms folded across his chest, cigarette perched on his lips.

Kai, meanwhile, is in the process of finishing his cigarette, nodding his farewells to those departing— and pushing to his own feet with a glance at his watch. It's that time again. "Enjoy the rest of your day," he tells those still remaining, with a meaningful look given Timon as he extinguishes the smoke and starts away.

Ariadne inclines her head respectfully to the CAG, though there's a trace of warmth as well. "Good evening, Captain Marek."

"See you tomorrow morning, Captain," is Timon's response. Thorn, meanwhile, gets only a few taps — knuckles against folder, which he clutches in an arm.

"Oh." Thorn shrugs in response. "Wasn't anything." There's a last nod between the two men, and finally Thorn departs.

"Gods bless, Sister," murmurs the Captain with a briefly flickered smile to Ariadne. Then he's trudging off with that distinctive, if very slight hitch to his stride.

"My aim," Ariadne notes softly into a sip of her water, "is terrible. I only meant to glance your shoulder."

"Violating all rules of jus in bello in the process," says Timon, cup set down at last. The two schematics — with the relevant responses still scrawled at their base — are folded back into the binder with some amount of precision. "And let's not even get to the jus ad bellum." There's a tiny chuckle. "I demand redress."

Castor looks up at the door and he notices everyone leaving, "Do I smell that bad?" He asks curiously sniffing himself, "Whoa, yeah I need a shower after this." He then chuckles as he continues to eat his food.

Ariadne's eyebrows arch, her lips pressing together to suppress a grin — one that is, nevertheless, very clear in her eyes. "Do you?" she responds. "What manner of redress? If it's unreasonable, you realize, I might have to demand it be heard by a tribunal."

Leda continues to eat quietly because this is a conversation he doesn't want to get into and oh look warm food to eat. He takes a sip of water from his tin cup and then it is on to eating his veggies because those suckers don't eat themselves.

"Well." Timon fiddles with his folder, bending a bit of loose plastic to reveal the cardboard pasted underneath. "An apology, perhaps, for this act of unprovoked and barbaric aggression. For starters." Deadpan he is — until Timon notices the Viper pilot who's just sat down nearby. "Lieutenant," he says, his smile growing taut.

Ariadne gasps softly, the soul of affronted innocence. "Unprovoked?" She shakes her head and pokes primly at her enigmatic stir fry. "No right minded man or woman would convict me." The priestess looks up and blinks. "Oh!" she smiles at Leda. "Hello, Castor."

Leda looks over at Timon, "Sir." He offers politely. He then looks over at Ariadne and oh yeah he is so staying out of this conversation. He then looks over at the priestess, "Sister." He then attempts to change the flow of conversation, yeah, that's the ticket. "How have things been for you both?" He asks curiously.

For once, Timon doesn't bother telling the man not to say 'sir' — which, given that it's almost reflex by now, should be a sign of his mood. His solution? To turn the cold shoulder, albeit not literally. Instead: "Underestimate my rhetorical prowess at your peril, woman," Ivory warns in his best basso profundo. Which isn't really good at all.

"Yet, for all that your disquisition might be magnificent, Lieutenant, I fail to see how it could render obscure the fact that I could not have attacked unprovoked." The priestess sips her water. "When you are so obviously provocative." She smiles blithely at Leda. "Things have been interesting." She glances at Timon. "Wouldn't you say?"

Leda looks at Timon and notes the cold shoulder, a few months ago Leda would have run in attempting to figure out why, now, after everything that has happened to him this is water off the back. He then looks at Ariadne, "Define interesting, Sister?" He asks as he enjoys his stir fry but then again he loves the food rice is an Aquarian staple food.

"You're speaking in circles, Miss Adelphi," observes the Raptor pilot. "For indeed, a truism does not a persuasive argument make. And how — " Timon's face is the picture of wounded innocence, even as he commits unspeakable war crimes on the corner of his folder. "How am I provocative?" Well, maybe when he doesn't bother saying anything to her question about 'interesting'.

Ariadne simply dimples wickedly, glancing at Timon. "Well, it's been a week of exciting revelations," she tells Castor, choosing to answer him instead. Or, at least, first. "For instance, were you aware that Lieutenant Stathis snores?"

"Yes, yes I did." Castor says as he wonders how Ariadne knows this. He then looks at Timon and then to Ariadne and instead he shakes his head and he takes a second to shovel some more food in, "This ship is full of secrets, sister. Some of them aren't so big and others need to never see the light of day."

Yeah. No words from Timon, though watchful observers might notice that his shoulders have gotten unusually tense — almost to the point of trembling, though they're not quite there. Wide fingers move to pluck the foil ball from his cup before he excuses himself to throw it away.

Ariadne offers to Leda, "Lieutenant Stathis is also, I believe, going to bring me up on charges for assaulting him with a small, wadded up ball of paper." She watches the man disposing of his foil ball. "Which he really brought on himself."

Leda says, "Well, I am not in a place to question the command of the Lieutenant and should he wish to bring charges up there is little I can do." He then says, "However, I'd stand with you at the trial, Sister."

Into the waste bin goes that wrapper, the lid to which slams down just a little more loudly than is really necessary. The sound is muted, though, by the chatter from other tables, which have slowly but surely been filled. But there's no mistaking the expression on Timon's face — some strange admixture of amusement and irritation, and the latter is definitely winning the war. "I need to get back to reading," he says tightly, moving to grab the folder from the table. A few oil pencils tumble out, thudding against metal before rolling to a stop against his mug.

Ariadne stands, frowning slightly. "Pardon me, Castor," she smiles cordially at Leda. "I need to follow Lieutenant Stathis and delay his work just a little while longer." She makes swift work of cleaning her place, likely because she doesn't want her quarry to escape.

Leda looks at Timon and then to the Sister, "Good luck with that, Sister." He says admirably.

"Lieutenant." And then Timon stalks off in a remarkable imitation of his ECO, without waiting for the priestess to follow.

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