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Restless (BSG)

Title: Restless
Fandom: BSG
Rating: High end of PG-13
Words: ~2600
Setting: Kara's Subconscious
Characters: Kara, Lee, Adama, Tigh, Gaeta, Helo, Sharon, Socrata Thrace
A/N: I really needed to write this to work out all my issues with the end of Unfinished Business, to make me wrap my brain around it. Fanfiction therapy?



Thump, thump.

The fluorescent lights buzz incessantly, thwarting her attempts to see anything but their sickly glow. She takes one step, two, the sound of each step bouncing off the walls and returning to her.

She’s on the deck. The Mark IIs stand alone, unattended. No one’s been caring for them for months. She expects to find them coated in dust, but no one has been here; there is nothing to make dust. Instead, they are shiny, reflecting the already unbearable light back at her.

“Beautiful aren’t they?” It’s Lee’s voice. She can’t see him, but she knows it’s him. She can feel it in every inch of her being, a deep chill that shoots up her spine.

“Yeah.” She runs her fingers over the ship. “It’s cold,” her voice barely above a whisper.  She cannot bring herself to tear her eyes away from the machine. She’s old and worn, been put to use, she’s served her purpose and now sits alone in the dark without one.

A short scoff comes as a reply. “Of course it’s cold, Kara. It’s built to kill.”

“It doesn’t just kill.” She spins around to face him. The fluorescent lights behind him glow too angrily for her to make out the expression on his face. “It soars, it protects.” She turns back to the Viper, trying to get the light out of her eyes. “She’s a good ship.”

She feels his hand on her shoulder. “I’m not saying she’s bad. I’m just saying she was built to kill.” There’s the warm press of his lips against the back of her neck. “It is what brought us together after all. Fighting.”

She wants to put her arms around him, to pull his body against hers. This space is theirs and he is hers and she is his. “What will happen to her now?” She closes her eyes as his hands wrap around her waist.

He draws her against his body. “Well, we could melt her down… make her into something else, but that would take a lot of work. So I guess she’ll probably just sit here.”

Thump, thump.

He’s been lost in the crowd. “Lee?”

She sees seas of faces and bathes in the din of officers talking as they pick through their meals, groan and holler as they play cards. “Lee!” She scans the room for him. “Gods damn it, why does he always do this?”

“You watch your mouth, young lady.” She hears the voice. A split second later the smell of cigarettes is leaking down her throat. Kara hasn’t smoked in over a year now, and it strikes within her a yearning and a churning of the stomach.

Trying not to show any signs of hesitation, Kara pulls out a chair and sits across the table from her. “What are you doing here, mother?”

The woman takes another long drag on her cigarette before flicking the ashes onto the floor. “I realized I missed the military life and decided to see what I was missing out on. In my day we wouldn’t have gotten away with half of the goofing off you people do. No wonder you couldn’t save the colonies. Pathetic. I’m glad the cancer got me before your failure could.”

“We were really far away.” Kara replies as though it is the answer to everything. Her eyes are fixed a group of faceless uniforms dealing out the octagonal cards “There wasn’t anything we could do.”

“Yes, well let’s not dwell on the past.” Socrata lights another cigarette off the first one, or the tenth one, whichever it is, before stabbing it out against her own arm. “I hear you’re with Leland Adama now.”

Kara spins to face her mother, convinced her stomach is now trying to escape through her throat. “How did you know that? I wanted to keep that a secret.”

“People talk,” the ex-marine says. “They’ve seen it coming. They think it’s funny.”

Kara slams her hand down on the table and the room drops to pin silence. She feels the burn of their eyes tearing into her, but she doesn’t care. “What is so funny about it?”

Now it’s Socrata’s turn not to look at her. She gazes off into the distance, taking another pull on her cig. “The Adamas are military royalty, and you are certainly no princess. Just look at your hair, it looks awful that long. You should really cut it.”

A round of suppressed giggles echoes through the room, and Kara turns her back on all of them. “I have to find Lee.” She sweeps out of the room.

Thump, thump.

“Lee? Are you in here?” she asks as she pulls open the door to the pilot’s quarters. As the door opens the thick hot scent of the room slams into her face. It smells like exhausted fighters who sleep there night after night, it smells like stale shoes, sick stomachs; and tonight there’s the added smell of sweat and sex and for some reason pineapple.

Soft, clipped breaking penetrates the air, drawing her gaze to the bodies pressed against each other, pressing against the wall.

“Gods!” She exclaims, “Can’t you warn people about stuff like this? Other people live here you know.”

“Sorry,” Helo mumbles, his lips never once leaving Sharon’s, “If you don’t want to see, you can just turn out the lights.”

Her eyes brighten as the thought dawns on her. “Thanks for reminding me.” Her hand seeks frantically for the light switch, “You’re a real pal,” she says before flicking the switch and plunging the room into darkness.

The single figure of the couple do not fade into the black, rather they are illuminated by a soft red glow that Kara cannot place. “Is… ooh… there something we can help you with, Starbuck?” Sharon asks, her question punctuated with a pleased gasp.

“I’m trying to find Lee, have you guys seen him?”

Helo gives a soft grunt before he speaks, “You just missed him.” Sharon breathes an ecstatic giggle. The sound rings in Kara’s ears and causes her heart to clench tight inside her chest. “You two seem so happy together.”

In the glow, she sees Sharon’s hand caress Helo’s cheek, gently tracing the contours, her eyes fixed on his. “It’s like I was made to be with him.”

Thump, thump.

She places each step as carefully as possible; she has not looked back to see but she can tell that the floor is crumbling beneath her feet. She tells herself it’s rusting through, her steps aren’t hard enough to cause this kind of damage. She tiptoes softly but quickly. If she stays in one place too long, she’ll surely plummet to her death.

Well someone had plummeted. She sees the gaping hole in the floor in front of her blocking the majority of the A-shaped hallway. Kara gets down on her knees and peers down into the abyss.

“Hello?” she calls.

I don’t care who frakking knows!
echoes back to her.

“Lee? Are you down there?”

The darkness calls back, “Kara! Thank the gods! I’ve been down here for two days!”

“How did you get down there?” Her eyes scan the darkness trying to make him out.

“I jumped,” comes the reply. “There was a hole in the ground and I wanted to see what was at the bottom.”

Her eyes roll up and her voice fills with a swirl of worry and amusement. “You could have gotten yourself killed! How am I supposed to get you out of there?” A smile creeps across her lips as much as she tries to resist.

The voice from the darkness floats up to her, “Check the CIC. They might have some yarn!”

Thump, thump.

“You really need to stop moving this place. No one is going to be able to find it!” Kara’s voice strains to be heard over the blaring alarms. The people flitter from station to station bathed in the blinking red light.

The rough grumble of the XO’s voice calls to her from the other end of the room, “Thank you for that observation, Captain. But we’re having a crisis here.”

She steps back to avoid being plowed down by a frantic Gaeta who is running in a circle shouting “DRADIS contact! DRADIS contact!”

“Yes, I hear that. It’s loud!”

She spots Adama on the com, “Set Condition Zero throughout the ship.” He says sounding very admiral-like, she thinks.

“Condition Zero, sir?”

“Yes,” Tigh snaps, “Zero. The number below One. It’s a very serious Condition. Don’t you know how to count? How do you manage to take off?” He rolls his eyes and draws a flower on the tactical chart with a dry erase marker.

She folds her arms across her chest, “I do my best, sir.” She spits out that final word before she turns her focus to Adama. “What seems to be the problem, sir?”

“Nothing.” His voice scratches like sandpaper, “There’s too much of it. I thought if we sounded the alarms something would happen. Things usually happen while the alarms are going off.”

She raises her hand in salute. “I wish I could help sir, but I have my own crisis. It’s your son.”

“Zak?” He spins towards her, eyes burning with some emotion she cannot place. But she feels her emotions, they stab her in the chest as she tries not to stumble backwards.

“No. Lee, sir. Lee.”

The Admiral turns his gaze away from her, eyes becoming focused on some distant point, perhaps in the afterlife. “So you’ve forgotten about Zak then.”

“No. I’ve never forgotten about Zak. But, sir, Lee is in trouble.” She struggles to keep her voice from shaking. “He’s trapped in a hole.”

His voice drops from indignation to a sadder tone, “He does that. I don’t find him many other places these days.”

“Sir, we need to get him out of there!”

“DRADIS contact!” Gaeta calls from his station.

Adama pushes past Kara and approaches him. “What have we got?”

“Nothing, sir.” His voice trembles, and Kara thinks for a moment that he looks like he is about to pass out.

“Sir, I have to get Lee out of that hole. Do you have any yarn?”

Adama doesn’t make eye contact with her, “Carry on, Captain. We have a lot of nothing to take care of here.”

Thump, thump.

“I’m just going to have to do this on my own,” she grumbles to herself as she makes her way back to the pilot’s quarters. The smell has changed, it still smells like pineapple but it doesn’t smell like much of anything else. As she crosses to her rack she feels a strong pair of arms grab her around the waist, a face nuzzling against her neck.

“Sam?” she asks, “how long have you been here?”

“Oh, always. I got tired of waiting so I decided to play with your dolls,” he says, opening up his hand to show the figurines of Aphrodite and Artemis.

With a swift motion she snatches them up, “They aren’t dolls, Sam. They’re very important to me.”

“I know,” he says with a gentle smile as he sits down on the bed. “You made them look after me, so they’re important to me too.” He grabs her hands and pulls her down into the bed, her head very narrowly missing the rack above hers as she falls against his chest.

“I did want to protect you, you make me feel safe,” she whispers. Her hands reach behind him tug at the sheets on the bed, “But right now I have something I need to do. I… it’s calling me.”

“I don’t hear anything,”

She sits up tugging at the sheets, pulling them up and sending the pair toppling to the ground with a loud thunk. “Not that kind of call,” she replies, balling up the sheets into a bundle. She sees his eyes and the sorrow that lingered there. “I’m sorry,” she whispers, “You know it’s not because I…”

Thump, thump.

The hallways are endless and there are holes all over the place, everywhere she has been there are gaps and cracks and everything around her crumbles. Debris from above showers down on her as she rushes forward, something inside her tugging her apart.

“LEE!” she calls. “Where are you?”

And then she hears it, “My name is Lee Adama and I love Kara Thrace,” her heart races and the words alone draw her to his abyss. Working furiously, she knots the two sheets together and drapes them over the edge.

“Can you grab a hold of it?” The bed linings dangle down into the never-ending darkness, but she cannot even see him. “How did you get down there in the first place?”

“Well there were all these holes all over the place, I think someone was stomping around in the hallway. Can you get it any lower?”

“I’m trying,” she sits back and slips off her navy jacket, tying the sleeve to the end of she sheet. She takes hold of the other sleeve, dangling the line deeper into the whole. “How is that?”

“Still not good enough!” his voice is desperate. “I think there’s something down here!”

Tears are tugging at her eyes as she lies flat her stomach, two drops falling into the darkness below. “I’m trying my best, Lee,” she whispers. “I think I made the holes, I didn’t mean to; the floor just kept crumbling wherever I walked! It just kept happening and I don’t know why.”

“Shhh,” his voice soothes, “Don’t cry. Even if you are a frak up. I’ve almost got it. Just a few more inches.”

She scoots forward, fingers gripping the edge, feeling the floor start to buckle beneath her. Her breath catches in her throat.

“Got it!” a whoop of celebration fills her ears.

Her face bursts out into a wide grin and pulls up on the jacket, she can feel the weight of him on the end of the line. She pulls herself to the feet and uses herself as leverage until the sheet comes up.

No Lee.

What went wrong? She had felt him all along, right there and somehow… somehow… She calls his name into the darkness below and waits.

Silence.

“Lee?”

No reply.

“LEE!”

Thump, thump.

Daylight assaulted her senses, as her eyes fluttered open. Her head on Lee’s chest, she could hear the soft thump of his heart beat.

Last night had actually happened. They had wandered off on their own, and admitted their love, and frakked, and shouted their love to the sky, and fell asleep in each other’s arm, and it was not a dream. She sat up running her fingers along the contours of Lee’s face as a smile crossed hers.

It only took a few moments before the blissful morning haze broke flooding her with the details of her dream and she fell back against the ground. “Oh, frak me,” she whispered to herself. When the cold morning breeze hit her, she remembered just how naked she was and groped around in the dirt for her clothes.

Dressing was a rushed event, scrambling to cover herself up and make it back to town. What would happen if Sam woke up and realized she’d been gone all night? Where had she even left him anyways? She gave herself a quick sniff, wondering how much of Lee’s scent still lingered on her. It wasn’t a lot, but definitely enough to make her knees threaten to buckle for just one moment. “Oh, frak me,” she muttered again.

The entire walk back to town, the holes in the ground, the echoing words, her inability to save him- all of it haunted her mind. Hollowly she tried to convince herself, “It was just a dream, it doesn’t mean anything.” 

Comments

( 20 comments — Leave a comment )
enots
Mar. 9th, 2009 01:59 am (UTC)
That was fantastic: haunting and sad.
rayruz
Mar. 9th, 2009 02:02 am (UTC)
Thank you.
shah_of_blah
Mar. 9th, 2009 05:44 am (UTC)
Lovely. Heh, the title is very apt, as I felt like I was watching the BSG version of 'Restless' (and that's a compliment, since I adore that episode). I loved the tone throughout Kara's dream--how it was hilarious at times (like Condition Zero) but underscored by the fact that Kara was facing her own inadequacies/insecurities at just about every turn.
rayruz
Mar. 9th, 2009 01:21 pm (UTC)
Thank you! I'm glad you like it, I did pick the name because everytime I got stuck I was like "What would happen in Restless?"
elzed
Mar. 9th, 2009 09:01 am (UTC)
Oh, Kara, you poor, frakked up girl... Nice job with the nightmare - some of it felt very real (as a dream, that is). Loved the Condition Zero, and the whole CIC scene.

rayruz
Mar. 9th, 2009 01:21 pm (UTC)
Thank you. I'm also personally really fond of the CIC part.
cattm
Mar. 9th, 2009 11:47 am (UTC)
I loved the dream. It felt very surreal and ethereal, you really succeeded in conveying that dream quality where everything is very strange but at the same time real.
rayruz
Mar. 9th, 2009 01:22 pm (UTC)
Thank you :)
callmeonetrack
Mar. 9th, 2009 02:29 pm (UTC)
Wow. That was a really interesting way to look at that night/morning. A crossover yet not! (I kept waiting for someone to mention cheese...heh.)

Really fascinating and compelling! Thanks for sharing.
rayruz
Mar. 9th, 2009 02:34 pm (UTC)
Thank you so much! :) I didn't even think to bring the cheese man into the equation. That would have been fun.
rebelliousrose
Mar. 28th, 2009 07:38 pm (UTC)
Wow, Kara down the rabbit hole. Love this, loved the Alice images, ADORED Gaeta as white rabbit. I think you may have just given me an idea for an icon set.
rayruz
Mar. 28th, 2009 08:56 pm (UTC)
Wow... I actually didn't picture it that way at all.. I mostly had in mind an episode of Buffy when I wrote this but you're right it does have some parallels.
workerbee73
May. 5th, 2009 08:48 pm (UTC)
Oh that--- that was a very cool trick indeed. Well done. : )
rayruz
May. 5th, 2009 09:04 pm (UTC)
I wrote this after reading some German expressionism for my theatre class. *shrug* Glad you like it though!
arielmoondance
May. 5th, 2009 11:27 pm (UTC)
Very sad and twisted and very Kara-like. I like the reveal that the thump, thump is Lee's heartbeat in her ear.
rayruz
May. 6th, 2009 12:28 am (UTC)
:D Thanks
ecstaticdance
May. 6th, 2009 03:04 am (UTC)
That was very, very good. Poor Kara. Now I want to give her a hug...
rayruz
May. 6th, 2009 03:06 am (UTC)
:D Thank you.
mintenergy
Jun. 13th, 2009 07:49 am (UTC)
Loved this. It was a like every dream you've ever had but didn't want to. You really captured that dreamlike/but I think this is really hapenning/ quality here. Fantastic.
angelicalangie
Mar. 29th, 2010 06:26 am (UTC)
I loved this, but it was missing just one thing;

"I wear the cheese, the cheese does not wear me." - Sorry I loved Restless and the randomness of the cheese-man, and I was totally missing that line!!!

Thank you for writing this!
( 20 comments — Leave a comment )

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