This logfile is imported from aitelogs2 and may contain errors or wrong timestamps.
#MSVJackOfDiamonds – February 3, 2018
The 'night' aboard the Jack has passed in silence after the battered and exhausted people aboard found their way to sleep. More than a few found it at the bottom of a bottle, and some through the comfort of leaning on someone close. Others yet have sought solitude in remote corners of the creaky old ship. Only in the infirmary has ceaseless activity continued, hour after hour, as Senya and Halisi work without rest to save the
life of Oxaris. The Eclipse biotic has been carried down to the cargo module to recover in one of the cots after her surgery was completed. Only now has silence descended on the infirmary as well. With the mangled turian stable and asleep, the only sound in the sterile white room is the beeping of the monitoring equipment. Her dented and scorched armor plating lies in a pile outside the infirmary window, along with what’s left
of the undersuit that had to be cut off of her. An ill-fitting hospital gown, clearly meant for more humanoid species, has taken the place of the Ghost’s sleek armor. She’s hooked up to an IV stand, several different fluids being pumped into her system. Zaylus’ presence has proved crucial, a timely donation saving her from the effects of blood loss. The doctors have done their best to repair the organ damage, but it’s a
temporary effort at best, and additional surgery will doubtless be required upon arrival in Freedom Falls, once synthesized materials for organ repair can be acquired. Senya has taken it upon herself to keep watch in the infirmary, while Halisi has made her way up to the cabins at last, climbing down the ladder to Ilyna’s quarters with sluggish steps. She appears to have showered, and is wearing an old grey Alliance t-shirt and
some sweatpants. Another loan from Elena, most likely. She turns around upon reaching the bottom, an exhausted smile crossing her face as she spots the sleeping trio. Li has moved in her sleep, or perhaps awoken at some point during the night. She’s curled up into a ball between Jason and Ilyna, leaning against the latter. In the cargo hold, sounds of clanging metal and a welding torch has started to break the silence. Elena is
there in her corner, protective mask on and sitting on a crate as she works on her assault drone. It’s unclear if she’s had any sleep at all. The body of James, as well as the two Collector corpses aboard the MSV Good Things Come, were brought onto the Jack by Senya, and have been placed in cold storage. The remains of Mingxia have been carefully collected by Halisi and sealed away in a metal container. Niklos has locked
himself in his quarters, refusing to hand over Nadia’s body. The ship has been running more loudly than it did during their pursuit, and the heat sinks seem hotter.
Ehanis has definitely found her sleep at the bottom of the bottle, and only stayed up for half an hour after the others. She's lying a bit out of the way near the top of the stairs, but anyone passing by is likely to notice her.
Jason starts at the sound of Halisi's arrival, his eyes snapping open and darting about the room as he searches for the source of the sound. As his eyes adjust and settle onto the doctor, he seems to calm a bit, only now realizing his hand has instinctively settled on the spot his Phalanx is usually holstered. His cybernetic hand slowly eases back to rest on his leg as he blinks away the sleep and shifts in place a bit against
the wall. "Hey..." he offers weakly as he looks to the asari at his side, worried his startling may have awoken her. In his half-asleep state it takes a moment for it to settle in that Halisi's presence may not be a good thing and his gaze snaps right back to her. "Is everything alright...?" he continues, a sudden bit of dread creeping in over the state of the turian, "Oxaris...?"
Ilyna has been alseep throughout the 'night', even while Li relocated to her side. Their conversation last night did enough to silence her racing mind that worried about the Li, about Ehanis, about... everything. Halisi's movements also failed to wake her up, but Jason's speaking does cause her to stir.
Leah has slept soundly through the night on the galley sofa, assisted in part by the combined efforts of Nathan Pillowhausen and a now-empty bottle of Lucy's whiskey.
Halisi blinks. In her exhaustion it takes her a moment to realize Jason thinks she's there to bring news. "She's... stable. For now. We've done all we can, but... she needs more care than this ship can provide. We'll need to transfer her to the clinic as soon as... as soon as we're back." She closes her eyes for a moment, a drained sigh escaping her as she runs a hand through her still-damp hair. "Dr. T'Mari has... very
kindly offered to take the first shift keeping an eye on her so that... I could get some sleep." she explains. "I... just wanted to check on these two." she adds a bit more quietly, her gaze travelling to Li and then Ilyna, before going back to Jason, a hint of discomfort breaking through her tired expression.
Zaylus has moved restlessly about the ship since their return, in sharp contrast to the nesting he'd done during the outbound journey. This presense turned out to be somewhat prudent as he was up and easy to find when they needed his blood for Oxaris. Since then he's been hovering sluggishly around that area of the ship, periodically resting on the stairs just outside the infirmary.
Uneasy feet bit him to rise once more and slip quietly toward the infirmary door, unconsciously heading inside with an anxious look.
Jessica has kept to herself throughout the night. Numerous attempts at sleep were thwarted by her racing thoughts and whatever shut eye she was able to get was fragmented. Not wanting to stick around in the cargo unit with Jattic, but eager to avoid the sound of Elena's work, she has taken up residence in the main corridor near the crew cabins. Seated on the floor against the wall, she only briefly tears her gaze away from an
arbitrary spot on the ceiling to acknowledge Halisi with little more than a glance before returning to her ceiling-watching duties.
Jattic has taken advantage of the fact that most of the team has cleared out of the cargo unit by claiming one of the cots for himself though, much like Jessica, it hasn't allowed him to get much sleep. Still, some rest is better than none.
Senya seems half asleep in her chair, but she stirs as Zaylus enters, blinking her eye a few times to clear her head. A quiet grunt follows as she studies the turian. "Here for her, I take it?"
Wrench has climbed the ladder to the main engineering room, and Ehanis' peace is soon disturbed by the sound of tools against the insides of a detached maintenance panel in one of the walls. The small human is crouched on the floor by it, leaned in and tinkering, occasionally grabbing something from the toolbox next to her.
Oxaris has been touch and go, but the skilled work of the doctors saved her from passing on into the afterlife. The gown is... comical, at best, and has really only done much to cover from her waist down. Naturally the woubds hve been covered too, but in terms of decency? You get what you're given. She lays there, still, her mind quietened after her moment from earlier on.
Pivin emerges from his quarters, shooting a glance to Jessica, but thinking better of disturbing her. He heads for the galley, going to the kitchenette and grabbing a glass from the cabinet. The sound of water flowing from the faucet soon fills the room. He doesn't seem to notice Leah and Nathan right away.
Xiu is no longer asleep, but she's still lying in her cot, staring at the side of the nearest crate, facing in towards it.
Zaylus rolls his head as he lets out a low hum, his gaze distant and distracted. "Do you need any more blood?" He asks hoarsely, casting a glance at the resting turian. His mandibles twitch as he studies her face for... something.
Jason gives a couple of tired nods as he listens to Halisi, relief showing through as the doctor confirms that Oxaris is stable. As she looks to Li and Ilyna, his gaze follows and he sits up a bit straighter, her discomfort not going unnoticed. "I-..." he begins to explain, attention shooting briefly to the unfinished beer beside him, "...stopped by to have a quick talk with Ilyna last night. Have a drink. See how they were
doing." With a small, pained grunt due to his aching bones and pained joints, he presses a hand against the wall and begins to climb to his feet, scooping his beer bottle up in the process. He does his best to be as quiet as possible to avoid disturbing Ilyna and Li, but it's a poor attempt at best as his boots clank against the floor. "Must've dozed off." he continues, quickly pulling his free hand up to suppress a yawn
EclipseBiotic has not yet awoken since being carried down. She's wearing a loose-fitting tanktop of uncertain origin, as well as baggy pyjama pants. Her wounds are coated in medigel, and both her hands have been wrapped up in bandages. A bandage patch also covers the burned part of her bald head, obscuring the tattoo designs that were there, although whether they're intact is uncertain.
Nathan has too slept. And, oddly enough, very soundly. Head lent back, hand clutching Leah's, the other in a fist propping his head up by his cheek. Content, if not very flattering given his mouth is partly open.
Ehanis rolls over to the other side, away from the sounds. Her joints are stiff and tight from the uncomfortable sleep, especially given yesterday's exertion, and the hangover isn't helping anything. "Could you keep it down?" she mumbles groggily.
Senya shakes her head softly. "No. That won't do any good at this point. She's stable for the time being. In no small part thanks to your presence."
Wrench blinks, looking over in Ehanis' directions. It seems she hasn't noticed the asari. "Oh... uh... I can try!" she calls out, perhaps a bit louder than what's ideal. "Kinda... need to keep the ship in one piece though. If this overloads we might lose an engine, and then we'll spiral out of control, and the FTL envelope will tear us apart... and that'll... that'll just be nasty for all of us, so... yeah." she explains
while gesticulating with a strange-looking tool. "But I'll do it quietly!" she adds with a confident nod, returning to her work. To her credit, she seems to be doing her best to keep the noise down, but metal on metal can only be so quiet.
Li stirs as Jason leaves the bed, an anxious look crossing her face as she grabs a tighter hold of Ilyna.
Zaylus looks back at the asari, the small affirmation only seeming to add to his gloomy disposition. But he nods in understanding, lingering in place as his weight shifts from foot to foot. Instead of turning and leaving like he meant to, he drifts over to Oxaris' bedside with slow steps, looking down at her pitiful form. He opens his mouth as if to speak again, and justify his
Jessica unjustly glares at Pivin as he passes through the corridor. Mostly just because she needs someone to glare at. Preferably Nathan. But you know what they say. If you can't glare at the one you want, then want to glare at the one you're with.
Leah winces as the sound of water cuts through her and a single, emerald eye cracks open. A soft mumble escapes her as her foggy vision adjusts to the room. As she spots Pivin, she's able to connect the dots. That explains the water, but what's the heavy thumping? Where's it coming from? One eye still closed, she raises her head slightly from Nathan's lap as she searches for the source of the dull thump. Ohhhh. Right.
Hangover. That explains that. She tightly shuts her eye once again as the thumping intensifies, a low whine escaping her while she slowly sits up and brushes back her unruly hair and finally relinquishing her grip on Nathan's hand.
Senya studies Zaylus for a moment before sighing quietly. "I believe I'm going to visit the bathroom." she says. "Keep an eye on her, would you?" Perhaps just a way to give him some privacy with his friend. She stands up, heading out the door at a slow pace.
Ilyna is woken up by Jason getting to his feet, since she was sleeping leaning against him. She slowly sits up, moving a hand up to the left side of her neck to rub it. Ilyna looks down, and lets out a sigh as it's obvious Li must have woken up during the night. It's only now that she notices Halisi, and looks up at her with a titled head. She did not notice her discomfort, though. "Hey," she whispers. "How
Nathan remains still, the sound of water apparently not enough to stir life into him. It's not until Leah starts to shift that there is a sudden snort and jolt of his body. He blinks his eyes open and veeeery slowly lifts his head from his fist, leaving a great big red mark on his cheek. The hand holding Leah's starts to try and grip at midair, his brain not yet catching on to the fact that she has let go. When he
does realise, he groans irritably and blinks away the sleep from his eyes, looking around. "Mmmm, wassat? What time is it?"
Pivin notices the sleeping humans just as he's about to take a sip from the water. He furrows his brow slightly as they wake. "There are plenty of beds on the ship." he points out, heading over toward the table with glass in hand. Quite familiar with what a hungover human looks like, he places the water on the table in front of them. "Here."
Oxaris lays there, no expression on her face. Her mandibles twitch once and her breathing is strained, but steady.
Zaylus blinks, glancing briefly at the asari as she leaves. "Yeah, I can watch her." He murmurs with a shallow nod. If he picked up on her intentions he doesn't show it, taking the temporary watch on good faith. He holds until Senya has completely gone before releasing a long, low sigh. "Hey, Ox." He mumbles, barely above a whisper. His talons tap lightly against his leg, and he
glances around as if looking for eavesdroppers. "I hope you're not thinking about dying on this ship." He scolds lightly, barely a trace of humor in his tired voice. "I still want a rematch."
Ehanis winces at the girl's well-intentioned, but loud reply. "Just... keep working," she groans and sits up. "I'm not going to get any more sleep anyway." Ehanis looks around until her eyes stop at the empty, discarded bottle. "Fuck," she mutters. Whether that is because there's nothing to drink with arms length, or the implication that she did reach the bottom of it is left up to interpretation. She sighs
and looks over at wrench. Most of what she said would fly right over her head in a perfectly clear and sober state, but she did understand that it was very bad news. "Did the bugs break it?"
Halisi watches Jason as he rises to his feet, nodding slightly as he speaks. The faintest of smiles briefly crosses her face before her exhaustion returns. "Yes... yes, I... believe it did." she says. As she hears Ilyna her gaze goes back down to her and Li. "Seven hours or so." she offers. She crouches down in front of them, stroking Li's head as she studies the girl, faint smile returning as a sigh escapes her. "How... how
Wrench doesn't bother poking her head out, speaking with most of her upper body buried in the guts of the ship. "Sure did. Nicked the side of the ship when we were making our getaway. Would've gone right through us if their aim was better."
Xiu eventually rolls over after hearing Jattic's sigh. She sits up, looking around until she spots him. She seems to hesitate for a moment, not sure if he's even awake. "H-... hello?"
Zaylus winces at all the thoughts coming to the surface, but in the relative privacy of the infirmary and the low likelihood of anyone else remembering what he said, he continues unabated. "Or at least... tell you why I reacted like that." He murmurs bitterly, his gaze drifting to other places in the room whenever the sad sight of Oxaris becomes too much.
Leah looks to Nathan as her eyes slowly open once again, his dumb pose getting a slight smirk out of her despite the headache setting in. As he wakes, she slips her legs off the couch, clunky boots coming to rest on the ground. His question causes her to make a play of leaning forward slightly to glance towards the viewport. "Mmhmm." she decides in a tired hum, as if her assumption has been proven correct, "It's still
ship-o-clock." she responds. Her voice is low as she tries to wake up, but her usual cheery nature has made a slight return after the somber tone from the night before and shines through the cracks of her hangover despite the pain settling in. As the salarian speaks up another dull throb across her temple causes her to shut her left eye and wince as she looks his way. She doesn't respond to his suggestion, but the offer
of water gets a small, appreciative nod. "...Thanks." she says, leaning forward to cup the glass in both hands. She takes a long sip from it, looking briefly as though she may just chug the whole thing before pulling the glass away from her lips and thrusting it in Nathan's face. "Drink."
The monitoring machines continue their quiet beeping. Oscillating lines and scrolling text on the monitors.
Nathan rubs at his eyes, his joints popping from the pose he slept in to announce that, hey, not the best way to sleep. He smacks his lips and looks around, the blurring nature outside the viewport causing him to stop... think... then put two and two together. "Oh... right. Space." He groans and props his elbows on his knees, then his face in his hands. His canteen, despite still having some left in it, was clearly
enough for him to be regretting it today. He looks up just in time for a glass to appear right before his face, his eyes crossing to look down at it. "Huh? Ah, right. Thank you." He puts his fingers to the glass, sitll in her hands, and tips it up tfor him to drink. Laziness levels, maximum.
Jason watches as Halisi addresses Ilyna as he suddenly finds himself feeling like a third wheel, that discomfort on Halisi's face transferring his way. It's not like it had gone unnoticed that Halisi was at Ilyna's house the night of Li's abduction, but now certainly isn't the time for questions. "I-... Uhh... I'll give you guys a little privacy." he offers, reaching out to rest his free hand on a rung of the ladder.
Jattic doesn't stir at first. It takes a few moments before he, too, rolls over to face in the human's general direction and the low rumble of his voice is heard. "Did you manage to get any sleep?" he asks. It's unclear by the tone of his voice if he's just disinterested or tired, but there's certainly a lack of excitement at the idea of having a conversation.
Pivin nods slightly to himself as he steps back. "Others will be coming here to eat soon, I'm sure." he mentions, before looking over towards the bridge. A frown fills his expression, and he sighs, moving to grab and fill a new glass of water.
Leah's gaze turns back to Pivin as he speaks up. Then in the general direction of the bridge. A small frown crosses her face in turn. She only allows Nathan the briefest of sips before her distraction gets the best of her and pulls the glass back to take another drink for herself. With little left in the glass, she idly shoves it right back into Nathan's face. "...How is she holding up?" she asks tentatively as she watches
Ehanis frowns. "Fucking assholes," she mutters, shifting a little closer to her workspace so she doesn't have to speak so loudly. She hated everything about them, from their ceaseless numbers to their awfully smug trash talking. "So, what are our chances like?" she asks. "The ship not blowing up, I mean."
Xiu furrows her eyebrows slightly. "A... a little, I suppose." She looks at Jattic with no small share of discomfort, but after silence has taken over for a while she nevertheless presses on. "Who... are you people?"
Wrench briefly leans out to change tools. "With me on the job? I think we can limp into port. The Jack's been through worse. Repairs are gonna be rough though..." she sighs.
Zaylus takes another deep breath to fuel another low sigh, his travelling gaze resting on the monitoring devices nearby. He can't really tell what they mean, but as long as the beeping continues without digital urgency, he'll consider it fine. Slowly his eyes come back to rest on her face, but instead of sympathy, the mark of his expression is just... uncertainty. His expression
twists with deliberation over what to say next, but maybe the futility of the excersize finally becomes too much to ignore, and he falls silent. He reaches out his hand to hers, almost hooking one of her talons on his, but falls just short of actually touching. Pulling his hand back, he turns from her. Unsaid. Undone. More miserable than before he distances himself from the resting
Nathan blinks as the glass is taken away form him, leading to a big ol' frown on his face. As he is abut to stand up and get a glass of his own, the water is shoved right back into his face... and into his nose. He grunts and rubs the end of it, before this time taking it for himself and drinking the last few droplets.
Jattic seems to consider the question for a moment, his gaze looking up towards the ceiling from his cot rather than focusing on Xiu herself. "We are private military contractors. Nothing more." he decides on. "One of our people were taken and we set off to bring her home. It was little more than luck that we happened across your path."
Senya makes her return a few minutes later, giving Zaylus a slight nod. "No issues, I trust?" she asks, walking up to Oxaris and giving the monitoring equipment a look-over.
Xiu sucks in her lips, nodding a couple of times as her gaze falls. She intertwines her fingers in her laps, looking down at her hands in silence for a while before turning her gaze back to the batarian. Her unease lingers. "Where... are we going?"
Ilyna glances over at Jason as he is about to take his leave, noticing his discomfort, which is mirrored in her face for a moment. He must think something is going on between them, even if it isn't what it looks like. Not yet. "I'll... join you for breakfast later," she says with a small, forced smile. Ilyna is still groggy from being woken up so suddenly. The neck pains are also causing her great discomfort
despite the painkillers. Her attention then returns to Halisi. "I'm fine, all things considered," she says. "Li...," Ilyna sighs, "she didn't say much last night." Ilyna didn't want to give the wrong assessment, for she hoped the girl was doing better than she thought. And she might be awake to hear her. "It has been a long day for us all." She tilts her head, not allowing Halisi a response before she
Zaylus nods, blinking slowly. "No change." He replies, ducking his head as he turns to leave. He hesitates at the door, quietly adding, "Just, let me know if you... need anything else."
Pivin looks down at the glass in his hand for a moment as he considers the question. "This ship was their dream. Her and James." He briefly looks to Leah before discomfort overtakes him, and he heads for the bridge with a sigh and a shake of his head.
Halisi looks to Jason, nodding softly before turning her attention back to Ilyna. A heavy sigh escapes her. "Is it that obvious?" she asks, flashing a faint smile. Her gaze drifts back to Li as she moves a strand of hair out of her face, her smile growing a little. "We did it." she comments, looking up at the asari again.
Jattic is quick to respond this time. "Aite." he says. As he seems to realize Xiu's unease, he finally looks to her. "I'm sure there will be some questions for you but you are not a prisoner if that's what you're afraid of." he explains flatly. "Once we reach Aite, you will be free to go."
Leah draws in a deep breath, holding it for a moment as the salarian takes his leave, hardly even noticing that she bopped Nathan on the nose. A frown threatens to creep into her expression while her thoughts turn to Lucy and James, but she's quick to push it aside as she glances to Nathan finishing off the glass of water. "How are you feeling?" she asks, forcing a small, tired smile back into place despite the nagging
Ehanis nods. "Good," she says, trusting the girl's confidence. "I can leave you alone if that'll help," she says with a shrug. "I don't want to fuck this mission up... again." The ship blowing up after everything they've been through would just be insulting.
Nathan sets the empty glass down on the floor, blinking the last of the sleep from his eyes. He turns his gaze to her and smiles, albeit weakly from the booze induced sleep. "I'm alright," he offers with a gentle nod, reaching over to give her hand a gentle squeeze. "Didn't expect to sleep so well, but... well, I did. So there's that. What about you? You okay?"
Xiu blinks. "Aite...? But-... oh." She swallows, trying to sort out her thoughts. "I don't-... I've never even been there. I have-... I just want to go home."
Senya offers a gentle nod. "Of course." she says, blinking away her tiredness as she turns back to her desk.
Jason gives a couple of quick nods to Ilyna and Halisi. "Yeah..." he agrees with the former, "...Sounds good." He lingers for a moment longer in discomfort as the two return to conversation, tapping his cybernetic thumb against the ladder. "I'll just-..." he adds in a mutter, nodding upwards before starting up the ladder. The sound of boots against the rungs sounds out until he reaches the top. Once back on his feet, he
examines the half-empty beer in his hand, looking the label over. With a shrug, he tilts the bottle back, slugging back the rest of it. He's had worse than skunky warm seven hour old beer.
Jessica watches as Jason chugs the remainder of his beer, judgement written all over her face. "You are just waking up, yes?" she asks.
Jason looks to Jessica who had gone unnoticed before speaking up. "...Yeah?" he says, brow furrowing as he tries to work out her point.
Jason frowns and glances back down at the now-empty beer bottle. With a scowl on his face, he looks back to the burned woman. "You're an alcoholic." he snaps back. Got her!
Leah's gaze travels uncomfortably to Nathan's hand as it grasps at hers, but she returns the gesture. "...Yeah." she says, propping her smile back up when she looks back to him. "Sorry I-... uhh... I mean, thanks-..." she begins, suddenly feeling self conscious about her drunken display the previous night, but she simply trails off rather than addressing the discomfort. With a small shrug of her shoulders, she turns her
attention away to collect her omni-tool that has sat on the couch beside her throughout the night. At some point it must've finished running through her playlist as the music went silent some time before they awoke.
Jattic gives a small, dismissive shrug of his shoulders. "So go home." he suggests, master of small talk. "Nobody is going to stop you."
Zaylus regards the asari for a moment longer before turning to go, leaving the infirmary behind. He doesn't make it very far, the weariness in his legs stopping him only after a few strides. Turning his head up slightly, he can make out gentle conversation above, but ultimately decides against going far. With a tired grunt he lowers himself against a wall in the vicinity of the
Jattic seems willing to just let the silence fill the room at first. Eventually, however, a somewhat frustrated sigh escapes him. "Where is home?" he asks against his better judgement, suddenly wishing he wasn't the only member of his team in the cargo unit so he could pass such trivial discussion on to them and just get to sleep.
Nathan releases her hand afterwards, clearing his throat awkwardly. He nods a little and waves a hand in casual dismissal. "Uh, no problem. Happy to be a pillow anytime." He shrugs a little and slowly pushes himself to his feet, gaze turning out the viewport once more. "Um, so... I... mm." He nods firmly. Yep, well spoken. "We're going home... I'm... still in shock, if I'm being honest."
Xiu seems a little surprised when Jattic speaks again. "I-... Earth." she says, brushing back some hair behind her ear as she looks up again. "Ev-... everyone else is gone." she says, stating the obvious. "It's... just me." Her tone is drained, and lost. "I don't-... what do I do...?"
Ehanis does want to search out somewhere more comfortable to lie down, but at the same time she doesn't feel like getting up. "Not going anywhere then," she says, looking down at the ground as she tries to focus with the thumping headache. "How are you doing, k-..., Wrench?"
Wrench doesn't respond right away, the sound of her tools and the occasional grunt filling the air. She sits up after a while, looking over at Ehanis with a heavy sigh, her mood falling. She seems to consider her response for a moment before shaking her head and going right back to work.
Leah brings her hand back into her lap, a small snicker escaping her at his initial statement. As Nathan turns his attention to the viewport and continues to speak, she bites at her lip. The sudden surge of pain reminds her of the nasty split and forces the smile from her face as she presses her tongue into it. She gives a few distant nods to his words, her own gaze moving to the viewport. "This is my third time seeing
those-... things." she says, finding it easier to not focus on the fact that those creatures they just wiped out en masse were once people. "Wish I could say it gets easier with time, Nate, but-..." she shrugs her shoulders as she gives a deep sigh, "...It doesn't. And now we know for a fact that they're tied to the Collectors..." she trails off, leaving her thoughts unspoken at first. After a moment's consideration,
she turns her attention to Nathan, "...You saw the size of their ship, Nate. Their technology. And they're just-... they're taking our people. Entire colonies are disappearing. Turning them into those monsters." Finally- and almost apologetically- she reaches her point: "This wasn't the end... Things are only going to get worse. And we need to be ready for that. We will be ready for that."
Ilyna (retcon) returns her smile, and raises her brows. "Goddess, you've," she begins, before catching herself and lowering her voice, "...been working all night?" she asks. "I don't know what we would have done without you, Halisi. You... I-," she sighs and gestures towards the empty bed. "Don't let me keep you awake," she says, offering another brief smile.
Halisi lets out a quiet chuckle, nodding a few times. "I've had worse shifts." she says softly, but her smile soon fades. "There was... a lot to do. And I had to be there for Oxaris. Aft-... after what she did? How couldn't I?" She doesn't seem to realize that Ilyna might not know just what Oxaris did. She glances over her shoulder towards the bed for a moment. "A real bed sounds pretty good right now." she comments before
looking back to the asari. She's shifted one knee to the floor, kneeling in front of the two of them now.
Nathan listens quietly, not turning to look at her. He folds his arms across his chest and his fingers curl into his shirt. He nods, grimly, and responds quietly, "I know... I know." He sucks in a deep breath and now deigns to turn and look at her, offering a weak and insincere smile. "I thought about it all. Everything. And... it's like a nightmare, but we're living in it. You're living in it... I just kinda
hopped in." He breathes out, heavily. "I'll do what I have to do. Like I did back on that ship, those were all people and... but they were gone. Too far gone."
Jattic returns his attention to the ceiling, rolling onto his back and interlocking his hands behind his head. "I have no answers for you." he grunts, all four of his eyes fixed on the ceiling and, once again, it seems like he may leave it at that. "The people who died. I assume they were more than merely coworkers to you." he considers aloud. "So you will continue on to honor their memory." he decides. "Start anew. It will
take time, but what other choice do you have? Give up? Allow their deaths to mean nothing?" He gives a stern shake of his head, "No. Go home. Allow yourself some time to grieve. And then move forward with your life." After a moment's pause, he shrugs against the cot. "Or don't. It makes little difference to me."
Leah nods a few times, her gaze lowering to the floor as she listens. There's the perfect opportunity for an 'I told you so' somewhere in there, but it's not one she could feel good about. So she just remains silent.
Jason makes his way into the galley just in time to catch the tail end of Nathan's statement. "Sounds like you two are already on the happy-train today." he says, tossing his empty bottle into the garbage can and moving towards the fridge to replace it with a not-so-empty bottle. As he pulls out a breakfast beer, he pops the cap off and takes a quick swig. "But now you know what we're up against, Ten." he says, closing the
Xiu doesn't seem quite sure what to make of Jattic's 'batarian wisdom'. She ends up sitting in silence for a while before standing up with a heavy sigh, starting to make her way towards the door to the cargo hold, a distracted look on her face.
Nathan looks to Jason as he enters, sucking in a sharp intake of air. "Maybe with discount tickets," he replies dryly. "But I get it... what I don't understand is why you guys? Why are all of you fighting this, getting entangled in this? Take your helmet footage and give it to the Alliance or to the Council or... shit, let me give it to Sandbeck. This is way out of our league, you know this."
Ehanis lets out a sigh and begins rising to her feet. "Sorry, should have known that was a sore spot," she mumbles, and pauses for a moment to let a bout of nausea pass. "Glad we got you out of there though," she says. "Bad shit happens to people that don't deserve it all the time in this fucked up galaxy." She kicks the bottle, which slides over to the edge of the staircase, and takes a few slow steps
Wrench keeps her head buried in the machinery. "Yep..." is her only response to Ehanis' finally statement.
Jason watches from across the room as as Nathan talks and he leans to his side against the fridge. "And say what...?" he asks as Nathan has finished speaking. " 'Hey, some psychopath took my friend's kind-of-sort-of adopted daughter that we saved from a cult of psychopaths worshipping ancient possibly-Collector technology. Go bring her home for us?' How do you think that would've went over? Entire colonies have went
missing, Ten. You think they would've dropped everything they're doing to try and save one little girl? Someone who isn't even a citizen of council space?" But that wasn't it. Yeah, it was about Li this time, but there was more to it. And as he falls silent and his gaze once more lowers to the beer in his hand, it shows through on his face.
Jattic glances towards the door as Xiu disappears through it, but soon enough his gaze returns to the ceiling above.
Nathan shakes his head. "That's not what I meant," he says. "I understand Li, but apparently thee guys keep coming after you or you somehow stumble upon them. Turn in the footage, maybe the Council or Alliance may know something or could use it. I don't know what, but... we're fighting Collectors. We just escaped their ship and blew up dozens of them. You think they'll let that go?"
Ilyna doesn't know that Oxaris is the one to thank for Li's survival, but she doesn't have to. Everyone that answered the call on so short notice to be part of this frantic chase into the unknown to save Li deserved nothing less than to make it home safe. "She was in a bad shape back there, but... she never stopped fighting," she says with a nod. "I hope she makes it."
Halisi nods softly. "Nothing's certain, but... she's stable. We just need to get her back to Aite." she says quietly. After a moment's silence she looks down at Li again, a tired sigh escaping her. "She can stay with me." she offers, looking back at Ilyna. "While you eat." She moves her hands underneath the sleeping girl, preparing to lift her up, but waits for Ilyna's approval.
Jason continues to stare at the label of his beer, chewing at the inside of his cheek as he listens to Nathan. "It wasn't that simple, Ten..." he says with a sigh, finally looking back from his beer. "You think we didn't try? After the-..." he stammers, the name alone carrying some sway over him even years later. "...After the Evening Star, me and Linda looked for anything we could to explain what we saw. All we found were
dead ends... Conspiracy theories... Extranet sites run by the sort of people the rest of the galaxy dismisses as lunatics." He seems to consider taking another swig of his drink, but stops himself. "...We just wanted answers, Ten." he finally settles on with a shrug. "Answers, and to make damn sure that what happened on the Evening Star didn't happen to anyone else..." His tone quiets as he speaks, his mind inadvertantly
wandering back to Di Yu. The entire colony that was lost. "...Guess we really fucked that up..." he mutters mostly to himself.
Ilyna frowns at the news, having been asleep when she told Jason about it earlier. "Oh, if there is anything I can do to help, just... tell me," she offers. At the second question, she looks down at Li. She's worried about being away from her when she wakes up, but she can always check on her a few times. "Thank you," she says. "I won't be far away if you need me."
Ehanis mumbles a half-hearted "Morning" she she passes Jessica in the hallway before entering the galley. She makes her way over to the kitchen to grab herself a glass of water. Ehanis furrows her brows at the conversation going on, but she wants no part of it so she doesn't say anything.
Halisi nods, flashing a small smile again as she gently lifts Li into her arms. "Come here, sweetie. I'll look after you until your mom gets back, alright?" she whispers as she carries her over to the bed, carefully placing her down and pulling the blanket up to cover her. Her smile lingers as she looks at the sleeping girl. They did it. They saved her. She gives her a pat on the arm before heading back to Ilyna, offering
Pivin re-enters the galley with a distracted look on his face. He fills up a glass of water in silence, shooting Jason a sidelong glance as he catches the end of his words.
Jessica gives a grunt of sorts that almost resembles a "Morning" in response to Ehanis, but otherwise seems to be content with remaining right where she is.
Ilyna takes her hands and rises to her feet, and she casts a glance over at Li who's been tucked into bed. Only now does it dawn on her that she might be putting off her much-needed sleep. She sighs and places a hand on each of Halisi's upper arms. "I... I will bring her with me if looking after her means you won't get any rest," she says. "Goddess, how... I'm sorry, I didn't think...."
Halisi shakes her head. "No. No, it's fine. She doesn't look like she's going anywhere just yet." she comments with a small smirk. Her gaze lingers on Ilyna's face as she reaches across with her right hand to grab Ilyna's on her upper arm, giving it a squeeze. "I..." A tired sigh and a brief darting away of her gaze. "...I just wanted to say I-... I hadn't really had time with everything going on, but... I'm very glad to
have you both back, safe and sound. When I learned you had been taken, I-..." she lowers her gaze, shaking her head slightly as discomfort and exhaustion mixes in her expression.
Nathan nods gently and looks between each of them. "Every life saved isn't a fuck up..." he says as he starts to walk towards the bathroom.
Ilyna averts her eyes, looking ashamed. "I... haven't either," she says. "That... talk back at the office kept me awake for hours the following night, but then it was... I don't know. It felt almost... trivial, which..." She takes a deep breath and looks back at her, giving her shoulder a gentle squeeze. "Which is wrong," she continues. "You-... you mean a lot to me, and... I don't... I can't make sense of
Halisi takes Ilyna's hand in her own and lowers it to the space between them as she studies her with silver-grey eyes, her gaze keen despite her exhaustion. "I'm not going anywhere. Take your time. And if there's anything I can do to help? You just let me know." she says, flashing a warm smile. "Right now... I'm just glad you're safe." she sighs, wrapping her arms around Ilyna and pulling her into a hug.
Ilyna wraps her arms around her in turn and holds her close, letting out a slight chuckle. "I... should be the one offering to help right now," she says. "You've... been working all night, if there's anything I can do to give you more time to rest, please tell me."
Halisi closes her eyes, leaning her head against Ilyna and lingering in the hug. A tired, soft chuckle escapes her. "Me? I just patch you all up so you can continue your heroics." she says. "Being able to finally rest... knowing everyone is safe? That's all I need." she says, only reluctantly starting to pull back from the hug. She lingers close, however, her hands lingering on the back of the asari's upper arms, her face
hovering just a few inches from Ilyna's as she studies her in silence, an indecisive look on her face. She can't be the one to make the first move. Pressuring Ilyna is the last thing she wants. But pulling back proves harder than expected. So there she remains, in limbo, studying the details of her face.
Ilyna sighs. "There's not 'just' about that," she murmurs before Halisi loosens the hug, and she's about to speak again when she notices the way she looks at her. The indecision is soon mirrored on the asari's face. There are two wrong answers out of two to take, it felt like, but she hasn't had the time to think about it. She had to take the second wrong answer. "Don't let me keep you awake, I said," Ilyna
Halisi lets go of Ilyna as she pulls back. One of her hands briefly goes up to her own neck as she looks down for a moment, a hint of embarassment crossing her face. "Right..." she says with a slight chuckle, nodding a few times before looking back at Ilyna, her hand falling back to her side. "We'll be here. You go get some food in you." she says, flashing a small smile. She lingers for a moment before deciding to head for
the bed, sitting down on the edge and putting a hand on Li's shoulder, running it gently up and down her arm as she looks to Ilyna again.
Ilyna lingers for a few seconds, her mind still racing about this decision. She looks over at Halisi, and nods. "Yeah," she says distantly and steps over to the ladder. "I...," she begins, casting a glance over her shoulder, but she sighs and instead says, "I won't be long." She focuses on the wall in front of her as she starts climbing the ladder.