The Gods' Billiard Balls
The Gods' Billiard Balls
Summary: Samantha and Roubani touch on the gods and their plans.
Date: PHD086 (13 July 2009)
Related Logs: Direct continuation of Hit and Run

Kharon - Recovery Ward

Samantha watches Hale go with a little wave and then they are alone again. The girlie magazines have, pretty much, run their course. So, not even bothering to look down at them again, she allows her green eyes to trail back to Roubani, studying him quietly…"So… how… How are you holding up?" She asks, more gentle than before, but the concern is clear in her voice.

As Hale turns to go, Roubani settles back against the chair, crossing his legs. His elbows rest on the chair arms, his fingertips half folded in a drape across his waist. He glances over the messy spread of magazines in the wake of the silence that's fallen, then back at Samantha. "Me? I can't say it's been all smooth, but such is life. We keep going." His lips quirk a little, less humourous than in lieu of shrugging. "What about you?"

Samantha shrugs her good arm, "Alright. Feeling like shit, but that's expected, I suppose… still trying to figure things out and laying in this frakking bed with nothing but my head certainly isn't helping things. But that's life. I got lucky, really lucky, I know that. Just don't know why." Sam admits quietly, fingertips itching at her side and leg, not really itchy but she really is jsut getting that twitchy for a smoke or some more pain killers which she doesn't dare ask for. She was begging to be -off- of them totally before.

Roubani is quite sympathetic to the twitches, which is probably why he doesn't remark on them. "We've all been 'lucky' in our ways. Or so we feel…that something's happened to us that perhaps we didn't deserve." He pauses a while, looking at this pool of conversation in front of them. Deciding how many toes to stick into it. "But who is to say it's about that at all?"

Samantha bites her lower lip, taking in a breath through her nose as she considers his last question. "Really?…for most of the last dozen years I spent thinkin' it wasn't about all that. Not a plan, not somethin' controllin' things from on high, fate blessing or damning us. Easier to think this is all just random luck and chance… it ain't planned in anyway what so ever, but… frak. I dunno… sometimes hard to ignore everything… that happened…"

Roubani glances down at his folded hands. "People make their decisions about fate based on what comforts them. To some, it's comforting to think that everything happens for a reason. To some, that's the most frightening thing in the world. But…there is more in the world than black and white. Even when it comes to this."

"Oh?" Sam inquires gently, tilting her head and looking straight at him now, waiting for the explanation that has to follow those words, because she doesn't mentally seem to be buying into it yet. She just watches him, quiet, truly listening for once… not even joking the least.

Roubani takes a little while to answer. His eyes stay down, but more out of contemplating how his fingers are locked together than trying to avoid her gaze. "I can't say that I think everything is planned. That things are unavoidable, that the end will be the same no matter what our choices are." He pauses, seeming to spend a while searching for an image. "Do you play pool?"

Samantha doesn't look away, even if he's not meeting her gaze. There's a lot she can learn from someone just by studying them, and he's under her scrutiny now, though it's thoughtful, considering, not accusing scrutiny. The question of pool makes her brows loft, a bit of amusement crossing her face, "I have, on occasion. Good way to kill time at the academy…Why?"

"Imagine a billiards table." Roubani stays settled as he is, but he lifts his chin and looks at the wall, as though he could see this very image himself. "A full table of balls, maybe just broken. You have the cue and you're in a particularly retentive mood, so you spend some time thinking and calculating your angles. You take your shot." His hands unfold so one can make a vague gesture, presumably to indicate this idea. "There are some things you can plan reasonably well…the initial speed of the cue, which ball it will strike first. By extension you can make a less secure prediction about how that secondary ball will move. Less secure about a third, struggling with a fourth. By the time you've guessed what the whole table will look like, you're most definitely and plainly wrong." And here he pauses, looking at her rather than go on immediately.

Samantha nods slowly, "Yes…I see your point but… well… where is this leading? You're suggesting the gods are inexpert pool players?" She inquires with a wiry little smile, trying to joke, but it doesn't really reach her eyes.

"Oh no." Roubani quirks a half-smile. "They're excellent pool players. Well, some of them are. Some are very precise with their shots…some shoot wild. My point, if you'll pardon the meandering, is that in my heart I believe this is life. We are the gods' billiard balls, sometimes nudged, sometimes whacked, and sometimes…simply let roll as we will. And while we roll we are subject to all the other balls on that table, each being hit themselves. Sometimes we collide and sometimes we don't." He exhales softly. "It's that where we end up is impossible for us to say whether it was planned or not. Too many factors, and it's just not the point. The point is that they watch us, and when they need to push, they do. How we roll after that…well. That's up to us."

Samantha makes a small, thoughtful sound in her throat, half frowning as she works through that theory which, sadly… makes too much damn sense. She sighs out through her nose and looks away from him, finally, staring up at the ceiling once more. "Maybe so. Better than the religious ravings I heard from most of my family all growin' up… still… shit doesn't make sense. The way it went down on the surface. I really don't know… I probably never will. And that's driving me up a wall."

"Perhaps it's not supposed to make sense," Roubani offers quietly. "Perhaps Dionysus was drunk and hit the table with his hip. That's what my uncle used to say when bizarre things happened."

Samantha laughs faintly, shrugging. "Perhaps. But… Ajax…" she trails off there, still insisting she saw him. Even now, undrugged, weeks later, and she's certain he was there. She remembers it. She sighs, pushing one hand back through her hair and shutting her eyes for a few heartbeats.

"What about him?" Roubani asks quietly. His arms shift to be more comfortable across his waist.

"… to do something like that… send him back… it's not… a drunken, foolish decision… there was purpose. I just have to figure out what it was." Sam admits quietly, eyes still shut, voice far, far quieter than before. This conversation truly was meant only for him.

"Why don't you think it isn't being served now?" Roubani asks her. "Or wasn't served?"

Samantha gives a short laugh. "To make me believe again? Question my life for the last decade and change? Know that I drove a man I loved to death when before I was only worried I did? Yeah… great purposes." She's getting extra cranky with the pain and lack of cigarette. She falls quiet a heartbeat later. "…sorry."

"No," Roubani says, watching her. If there was offence taken, it doesn't show. "I think you're doing all that by yourself."

"Then what do you think it was? What purpose could have been or is being served? I'm… I'm not asking you to play priest. Just… frak, Nadiv… you believe. You understand this… way better than I do… I'm just asking you as a… friend…" Sam admits, her eyes reopening again to stare straight at him.

"I think that the only one blaming you for anything is you," Roubani says, simply. "And that whatever you saw out there was meant to show you just that. His life, his problems…and his existence wherever is is about far more than you. He goes on and you have to as well. And if you don't, then you are indeed that foregone conclusion. But just like he had a choice, so do you."

Samantha presses her lips together quietly, taking in those words, completely thoughtful. She finally nods. "You're right. I… I gotta stop obsessing. Getting out of this damned bed will help but… well, what can ya do?" She asks with a tired little laugh and another shrugging roll of her left shoulder.

Roubani nods once, lifting a hand to scratch at his ear. "I remember when I was in that bed. I woke up and for days all I could do was torture myself with 'why'. Why would the gods do this to me?" His hand lowers again, settling back in his lap. "We do this a lot, humans. We expect so much of the gods."

Samantha gives a bittersweet smile, "Yeah, I suppose so. But… well, we're only human. Certainly not perfect. Get it wrong more than we get it right, I suppose…" She then tilts her head, her voice and expression a bit softer. "And…how did you get through it? Just laying there…wondering…"

Roubani answers quietly, "I told myself that if they had meant for me to die, I would have died." He picks at his cuticles. "And one day I stopped saying 'why' and said 'thank you'."

Samantha nods slowly, not saying anything for a long moment. Finally, she echoes over to him. "Thank you, Nadiv." Not the teasing, laughing gratitude she had around the magazines, but something far more earnest than that. Heartfelt.

There's a pause where Roubani might've been searching for some deflection to say, but then he stops. "You're welcome." His eyes come back up, looking at her shoulder and then her face. "And I'm sorry you're hurting."

Samantha waves a single hand off, "it's not that bad. Just annoying. Worried about being grounded permenantly because of it but… I hope not. We'll see what happens." She admits, giving her best trooper smile possible.

Roubani nods. He knows that feeling very well. "Don't let anyone tell you that anything is permanent. Most prophecies in this world are only self-fulfilling."

Samantha gives a faint laugh at that…"My grandma was… or said she was… an oracle. She told us this war was coming… from as long as I can remember. Did we self fullfill that?" She inquires gently, though it sounds like more a rhetorical question than anything…

"Well." Roubani says, quietly. "Would it have happened without us?"

Samantha smirks just a bit. "None of this would have."

Roubani shrugs one shoulder. "There you have it then, I suppose." He exhales quietly through his nose, shifting his legs a little. "Free will is quite the burden to bear."

Samantha shakes her head, finally shutting her eyes all the way and trying to let the pain take her away enough that, possibly, she could pass out, or they're going to drug her up again. "Yes, I suppose so…yet, if you believe, Free will is god given also…"

"Everything is," Roubani answers, quietly. "We love to say things like 'I'll give you five cubits if you can show me where the gods are'. But I would give you five cubits if you could show me where the gods aren't."

Samantha wasn't really expecting that. A frown crosses her lips, eyes reopening, despite the pain…"I can't agree with that. Especially with your previous theory. Yes, we might all come from them, but they aren't present and controlling everything…and if they are, they're utter bastards. They can't be everywhere. they are as imperfect as us if they exist at all."

Roubani smiles slightly. "I never said they were controlling. Nor that they're all-seeing. I don't, for example, believe they read our hearts. But there is something about them everywhere, I do believe that."

"Read our hearts?" Apparently, it's a phrase with which she's not familiar. Sam shifts on the bed, crossing her legs at the ankle, trying to get comfortable laying down the way she is, when she's really just stiff and cranky now. "And… maybe. But I look at this ship and I see something made by men, not gods."

Roubani mmhmms quietly. "As in, I don't believe they see our intentions. I believe they see our acts unto each other and unto this world. Sometimes we communicate our intentions when we speak or pray, but they are not givens." He reaches down to adjust the blanket at her feet, covering them better. "Of course this ship is made by men."

Samantha smiles a bit as he shifts the blankets, not really used to little touches like that. It… it was pleasant. She settles a bit, trying to force herself to relax. "Then where do you see the gods in it? In steel and glass…"

Roubani has to smile at that. "Yes. In steel and glass. And air. And men…and you." He gently rubs his shoulder and glances up as there's some sounds coming from sickbay proper. The blood drive, no doubt. "Listen, you ought to get some rest and I should submit to needlework. I'll come back round to check on you."

Samantha nods quietly to him, once more. "Yeah… I suspect drugs will be coming sooner rather than later, I can feel my arm again and…it ain't pleasant." She admits with a bit of a wincing grunt. Her free hand then comes up, reaching out for his palm to give a brief squeeze. "I…I'll see you around. Don't be too much a stranger. Don't let them suck you dry."

Roubani doesn't offer his hand for the affection. The touching seems to pull a little tension into his shoulders, but he doesn't yank away. Her hand gets a mild, slightly awkward pat. "I won't, sir." He stands up, leaving her pile of girly mags behind. "I'll be back, I promise. Get some rest."

Samantha lets go, giving a brief salute. "You too, Nadiv." And with that, she falls quiet. She is in too much pain to quite sleep yet so she reaches over and grabs up one of the magazines, settling in to read…

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