Under The Radar
Under The Radar
Summary: Eddie goes looking for some quiet time in the sims, but is out of luck. Meanwhile, Thorn hides out under the pretense of getting some work done. They end up having a conversation about recent events.
Date: PHD132
Related Logs: Related Logs (Say None if there aren't any; don't leave blank)

The simulators are currently unused, but not empty. A seated figure sits at the control station, idly twirling a pen one hand and holding a lit cigarette in the other. Thorn taps several keys, entering a sequence into the computer; he sits back as whatever he did begins to work. As the computer hums, he looks over the papers and notes strewn about on the console in front of him, using the pen to make a note here or scrawl something there.

Maybe that's why Eddie chose this time to come down to the simulators, because she knew it would be virtually empty. She slips in through the hatch, kicking it closed behind her with the flat of her boot. Hearing the computer spin up, but not recognizing who's in the cockpit, she gives warning. "Frak, I thought I'd have the place to myself." She heads over to the clipboard, signing herself into the time slot for one of the other birds.

"No such luck," murmurs Komnenos absently from the computer terminal. "They're shut down for the moment, anyway," he continues, pausing to take a long pull of smoke, exhaling it with a quiet sigh. "Compiling some code updates for the new aggressor craft profiles." With the obligatory announcement out of the way, only then does Thorn turn to look at the new arrival. "Oh. Hey, Mooner. Yeah, sorry… I figured I'd take care of this now, when people aren't usually in t' use 'em."

Eddie plods over, shoving her hands deep in the pockets of her fatigues. "Oh. Thorn. Shit, yeah. I was hoping to log a few minutes before people found out I was up here. They've been lining up and taking numbers to get in here with me and put me through the paces. Wanted to knock off some rust with as few audience members as possible." She cranes her head to see what he's doing. "So much for that." Mooner makes a scissors motion, trying to bum a drag off his smoke.

The cigarette is handed over without a second though; at this point, being bummed off of is like second nature to the man. Several status bars plod slowly across the screen, showing the progress of his compiling code; they move slowly but steadily, a percent every few seconds. Thorn nods at the woman's explanation. "I understand. Don't feel like playing th' lab rat, do you?" he replies, a bit of sympathy in his voice as he scribbles something or other on a sheet of typed notes. "If you like, I haven't seen you," he offers.

Eddie plucks the cigarette from his fingers, "'ppreciate that. It's like a feeding frenzy." She poises the cigarette on her lips, taking a deep pull of it that scrunches up her features. "Suppose if you do me a solid, I should do you one and not mention Samantha or that lovely mess, hmm?" She poses lightly, flipping the cigarette back around so the filter is towards Kom.

There's a sigh as Anton reaches back for the cigarette, plucking it out of his hand and immediately bringing it back to his own lips. He tosses the pen down on the table, swiveling over in his chair to face her full on. "Hells, I don't care," he replies, a weary look in his eye. "If you've got something on your mind, let it out. I'm sure it's not the last I'll hear on th' subject." A smoke ring passes through pursed lips as Thorn looks up at Eddie from his seat, his pinched expression a mixture of expectance and mild dread.

Eddie smirks deeply, the expression looking just hair mischevious. Her head cants just a titch to one side, and her eyes half veil as she studies his face. "Sam? Really?" That's all she seems to have to say on the subject at the moment, her hand reaching out to try and skim through the hair above his ear.

Komnenos shrugs. "Really," he replies with another sigh. "Don't ask me how it happened." An errant curl of dirty blond hair is tucked behind his ear by the passage of her fingers. He drums his fingers on the edge of the console, head tilted as he returns her gaze.

Eddie poises her tongue on the edge of her teeth, sucking against them to make a 'tsch' sound. "I had such high hopes for you." The slim little viper pilot needs to bulk up a bit more again before they'd even consider putting her back against any g's, but there's something stronger about her gaze. "You're going to make a go of it then?"

"High hopes?" Thorn's eyebrow rises slightly at the lithe young woman; he crosses his arms over his chest, bringing the cigarette back up to his mouth. There's a speculative look in response to her question. "Well… yes, I think so. I mean, it's already gotten this far." He shrugs slightly.

Eddie flashes him a wink. "Don't get so defensive, Thorn. I'm not gonna eatcha." Dark eyes flick down to the arms he's crossed over his chest, and she takes a half-step backwards. "Not without you asking nicely." Her lips press together for a moment, as if considering something. "How much longer."

Komnenos snorts; the sound carries a mixture of amusement and bitterness. "I have a feeling you're being kinder than some will." He looks at her for a moment, eyebrow raising with a hint of mischieviousness at her second remark. There's a brief frown of confusion at her question, though, before it clicks. His head turns back over to the screen; sixty-one percent complete. "Not much longer," he replies. "Ten minutes or less, probably, if you want t' stick around."

Eddie's lips twitch with another tiny smirk that threatens to pull at the corner of her mouth. It doesn't quite bloom, but the glimmer is in her eyes. "Darlin', I'm nothing close to kind. Way I see it, you're doing me a favor." Her eyes travel from his face and then lower. "Got another one of those cigarettes. I'll stick around."

"I've always got cigarettes." Indeed he does, as he pulls out a crumpled pack and tosses a fresh cigarette over in Eddie's direction. "Booze, you'd be out of luck. Ran out of that a while ago. Smokes, though, I have." Komnenos unclenches slightly, arms falling back down to his sides. His eyebrows crinkle in confusion at something she'd said. "A favor, eh?"

Eddie fumbles in her catch, batting at the cigarette from hand to hand before she can finally grasp it. Her reactive time isn't what it used to be. Sigh, add that to the list. When she has purchase of it, it gets slipped in the corner of her lips. While she digs out her lighter, the cigarette waggles precariously with her words, "Just proving there ain't no sure thing in this world."

Thorn watches Eddie carefully as she tries to get a handle on the small, slender cancer stick. He's silent for a long moment, eyes distant. "No sure thing." he says suddenly, his gaze flicking back to her face. "I can still frak shit up with the best of 'em, though, that's for sure." Anton sighs, the words spilling from his mouth now as he unburdens himself. "Now what? In one hand I've got a furious pilot, and in th' other, I've got a woman who will always remember this as how it started between us. Now that's an auspicious beginning, what?"

Even as the words come out of his mouth, Thorn is shaking his head. "Sorry," he says uncomfortably. "Didn't mean t' dump all that on you. It's not your problem."

Eddie fishes her hand down her tank tops to pull out a necklace. Attached to that silver string is a zippo style lighter. She takes her time in flipping it open, and drawing her thumb over the flint wheel to spark a flame. She touches the end of the cigarette, inhaling until she's got a nice cherry going. Mooner lets him stew long enough to withdraw his words, before she huffs out a chuck of laughter. "After the first time we talked, I always sorta figured us for kindred souls." She leans an arm on the back of his flight seat, tilting over him slightly. "Martin'll simmer, and he'll be alright. Sam, on the other hand, will fill the berthings with so much whining if you drop her right now, that when my hair finally grows back in, it'll be grey. You know what you have to do, Thorn. Nut up."

"I believe it. Minus the trouser-dropping part, of course." There's a sudden laugh from Komnenos at that. "You know how t' motivate a man, Mooner," he says with a slight grin. "Nut up, huh?" The tip of his cigarette flares as he takes a drag himself, sending a plume of smoke up towards the ceiling. "Well, I certainly don't intend t' drop her now. I'd look even worse," he adds in a deadpan. "Just have t' see where the rollercoaster leads t' next."

Eddie pulls the cigarette from her mouth, her hand extending behind her to flick ash right there on the deck plating. "There are more important things then appearances. Like sanity. Namely mine, and I don't want Sam costing me any more of it. Even if," Her free hand reaches for his face again, her index finger going to trace down the line of his nose and over the filtrum right above his top lip if he doesn't flinch away. "That means I gotta sacrifice you."

"Ivory says he thinks too much. I know the feeling," Thorn muses, half to himself. He remains still, not moving as her finger traces lightly down his nose; Thorn doesn't have Poet's aversion to physical content, and he seems comfortable enough with the woman. A measured look is directed her way as the finger moves. "Hope it doesn't come t' that," he says mildly, "but you do whatever y' think y' need t'." The ECO shrugs again, his shoulders twitching ever so slightly.

Eddie sinks her teeth into her bottom lip, perhaps biting back some comment or just an instinct that threatens to rise. She slinks away from such a near proximity, then gives a little shake of her head. "I stopped doing what I thought I needed to do, and started doing what I /should/ be doing instead. Shame on that, I could have had some fun."

Anton cants his head slightly to the side as she speaks. A pull from his cigarette forestalls any immediate reply, though. Another one of those analytical looks is sent in her direction. He's done the whole bite-back-what-you-were-thinking routine too much himself to miss it when he sees that look on someone else's face. Smoke plumes from his nostrils, the tilt of his head clearly inviting her to continue or clarify, if she so desires.

Eddie retreats to one of the other simulators, slipping inside with a little hop up onto the seat. She pulls up her legs, stretching them out to prop her feet on the top of the console. "It's no secret I have a serious hard-on for causing Passi hell. I'm just sayin', that if I really wanted to stir the shit…" She twists her head slightly, her eyes ticking down Kom then back up. "It could have been fun." Her piehole is plugged by another drag from the cigarette.

"Yeah, so I've heard," Thorn replies dryly. He pauses, looking over to the computer screen. Eighty-seven percent complete. "Few more minutes," he announces, before looking back to her and resuming the conversation. "I'm not exactly sure why, really, but I've heard. You and seems like a third of the whole frakkin' wing." Anton shakes his head ruefully. "I know Fingers' reasons, but most of the rest of it's a mystery. I've known people far more objectionable, t' put it lightly." Blue eyes turn back to the screen, watching it process. "I just hope your hate-on for her doesn't spill over on t' me. I'd like t' not lose any more friends over this, y' know?"

There's a slight smile from the taciturn ECO. "I don't have enough t' start losing them in droves."

Eddie scoots down a bit more in the seat, her knees tenting slightly as she coils up inside the simulator to wait it out. "See. You, my friend, are the precise reason I'm behaving myself. So you don't have anything to worry about, unless you start defending her to me and then we're gonna have a few problems. You wanna know what my deal is with Basket Case. Why don't you just ask."

"Alright, then," Thorn replies, eyes narrowing slightly. "First. You don't bitch about her t' me, an' I won't defend her t' you. No sense in either of us wasting our breath or starting pointless shit. Deal?" The cigarette in his hand is tapped, several flecks of ash fluttering down to the floor. Anton hunches forward in his chair, resting his forearms on his knees. "So. What is the deal with you and Case, then?"

Eddie snorts. "This is going to be a painful bumpy road, isn't it." She wets her lips before the cigarette is touched back to them. "I set her and Martin up, ya know?" She starts by way of explanation. "Was a night he was lonely and she was lonely and I put them on the path towards each other. Because sometimes I can read people. I got a knack. Case? She's severely lacking that knack. She tried the same thing with me and Roubani, not knowing that instead of helping? She damn near ruined the best thing in my life, and that's my friendship with him. To this day, I think she still thinks it's about Martin. And I don't want you to go correcting her, neither."

Thorn listens silently as Eddie explains. As she finishes, he nods slowly. "Ah." There's a brief silence; he scratches the tip of his chin thoughtfully. "Yeah, I… well, I asked." Puff, puff. "Not a word," he promises finally, after another pause. Blue eyes study her face for a moment; his lips draw together thinly, as though it's now his turn not to say what he's thinking. He just promised, after all. Instead, he just shakes his head, pursing his lips.

Eddie rolls her eyes towards the ceiling, giving a groan. "C'mon. Spit it out you frakker. You and I both know this shit's not going to work otherwise." She drags her feet off the console, letting them plop one at a time back to the floor of the simulator. "Yea, I know. She don't know no better. She's a 'what's on the surface' kinda gal. Is that what you were going to say?"

"Not exactly… I would hate t' think about what that would say about me, then," Thorn replies dryly. He nods his head sharply. "Nothing good, I'm sure." There's a quick smoke. "Yeah, it sucks. But aren't you and Roubani still friends?" Thorn asks. "Look, I'm not saying it's nothing. But is it worth it?" He shakes his head. "Maybe it is… I know what it feels like, t' be that angry about something. But…" There's simply a shrug from Thorn as he trails off. "I don't know, maybe I'm mellowing in my old age," he offers with a wan smile.

Eddie holds the dying cigarette out in front of her, watching the ember slowly eat up the paper and create a cylinder of ash at the tip. "You mean what's the sense of holding onto a grudge if there's no permanent damage done? Well, it mighta been the first straw, but it sure as hell wasn't the last. Anyways, it's really neither here nor there, and next thing you'll know it, I'll be trying to talk you out of your decision and maybe your pants."

"Hells know I've had t' ask myself the same question often enough," Thorn replies with a nod. "Whatever. Far be it for me t' interfere with a perfectly good grudge." He does a double take as she finishes, looking at her with an arched brow. "I wouldn't. You don't know where those pants have been."

Eddie pauses with the filter partway to her lips. "I could make a few guesses, but none of them polite. Don't worry, Thorn. I said I was behaving and I'm behaving." She looks to the screen and shakes her head. "Frak this." She slips out of the booth and straightens back up, dragging her hand down her face.

One hundred percent. The status bar on Thorn's screen flashes away, his program still running in the background. "It's done, anyway," he announces, turning back to the screen. His fingers dance across the keyboard. "All right, let me hook the booths back in and I'll be finished here." Another sequence is punched into the computer. "There. It's ready t' go."

Eddie paces over to the tables in the back break area, stamping out her cigarette into an already overful ashtray. "I think I've lost my zeal. Ain't that some real shit?" Her fingers scratch at her peach fuzz hair 'do, touching on that horseshoe shaped scar barely concealed beneath.

His work done, Thorn begins to shove his mess of papers back into their folders. The folders themselves are pressed into a messy stack, which finds its way under his arm as he rises from the control station. "Either way, no matter t' me," he replies indolently. Komnenos pauses for a moment, though, leaning against the station to pick out a fresh cigarette. He lights it from the dying remnants of the first, which gets tossed away, ground into the deck.

Eddie looks back to him, her features a far bit more serious then they were before. "I'm sorry, man. I didn't mean no offense." She takes a half step out into the main path towards the hatch, as if interjecting herself and his imminent departure. "You okay?"

"Didn't take any." Komnenos smiles slightly. He stops, bringing the new cigarette to his lips, eyeing her as she stops him. "Yeah." There's a roll of the eyes. "Mostly. I mean. Y'know. Other than the occasional thought that I may just be cursed or something."

Eddie forms a lazy smile, the thing taking a while to curve on her lips. "Shit, man. Join the club." She extends her hand, her fingers curved into a fist. The classic making of half a knuckle bump. Now all she needs is the connecting half.

Thorn's smile spreads wryly as he provides said other half, his knuckles bouncing off of hers. "Yeah, feels that way, doesn't it." He purses his lips slightly.

Eddie lets her hand drop away after she receives the reciprocation she desired. "Every damn minute of every damn day. I must have done some frakked up shit in a past life, to have it piled on me in this one. What are you feeling cursed about?"

"Well. You know the kind of story where a guy makes a wish, but he doesn't word it too well? And then whatever gave him the wish turns it around, saddles him with some frakked up shit that leaves him worse off than when he'd started?" Thorn answers a question with a question. "I almost feel like that guy." He pauses to take a long pull off that cigarette. "Yeah, I got what I wanted, all right."

Eddie tilts her head slightly at that explanation, her eyes narrowing just a hint as they sweep his face again. "You'll be alright baby." She reaches out to touch a hand to his face, palm lightly resting on his cheek. "If it makes you feel better. I won't give you any more shit about Sam."

Thorn grunts lightly in response. "Yeah, I'll live." He tilts his head again as Eddie's hand brushes his cheek, a slender finger resting along the scar there. "Thanks, though," he replies simply to the latter.

Eddie flashes him one more wink, then drags her hand off his face, her finger ticking off the scar with mild curiousity in her eyes but not voiced as to its origin. "Take it easy, Kom." She murmurs, then slips away for the door.

"An' you, Eddie," Anton replies, inclining his head briefly. He watches her leave, idly taking a pull from his cigarette as she steps away; he, too, steps for the hatch a moment later, hefting the folders in his hand and tucking his smoke between his lips.

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