Timeline: Backpost: PCH-9 1300 Hours
Brent was on stand down at the moment, much to his relief. He woke up in his rack and began to dress. Autopilot caused him to start to put on his flight suit. He blushed, much to the amusement of the other pilots in the room. He knew that he wouldn’t life that down soon. With the war, you had to find humour where you could after all. He put on a set of green fatigues instead and exited the bay. He hadn’t had too many days off, so he was more or less at a loss for something to do.
His stomach rumbling made his mind up for him. Laughing to himself, he made for the Solaria’s Mess Hall. He was actually looking forward to it. He loved Battlestar food, any food really. He entered and the place was a buzz of activity, so Brent eagerly got in line.
Jamie had felt an unintentional nudge against his arm, and turning around saw a Viper pilot having queued up behind him. It was peak lunch time, and so the mess hall was packed with crew. He held onto his tray, slowly making his way ahead.
“Sir,” he nodded over at the newcomer.
“Hello!” Brent replied, full of cheer. He saw that they’d be in line for a good little bit, so he decided to make conversation. “Have we met? If not, my names Brent,” he smiled.
Perhaps a bit too cheerful considering the circumstances, at least that was Jamie’s impression. He was beginning to seriously wonder if he was the odd one out, still trying to accept and get over the fact that his entire civilisation was nearly wiped out, and was still at significant risk of being so.
“Hey,” he said, forcing a smile in return. “No sir, I don’t think we’ve met. I’m Jamie. I’m one of the medics.”
“Pleasure, Jamie. Raptor jock here,” he replied. He wasn’t normally that chipper. Brent just figured living in the past wouldn’t be healthy, so he decided to live the best he could by going forward.
“Ah, right,” the medic nodded, as they slowly moved ahead in the queue. “I take it they’ve been keeping you very busy, then.”
“I guess you could say that,” Brent nodded.
There was a period of silence between the two when they finally arrived at the front of the line, picking their choice of mains for the day – a beef stew of sorts, or a vegetarian casserole. Limited options, but under such desperate circumstances Jamie found it quite the luxury. He opted for the creamy casserole, which he hoped was as appetising as it looked, before making his way to one of the tables.
Brent opted for the casserole as well. He just wasn’t in the mood for stew right then. His stomach rumbled, which caused him to get a flash of embarrassment. He loaded his tray and followed suit.
Jamie sat down and realised his new Raptor pilot friend sat close by as well. “Hope this is good,” he commented, digging a spork into the casserole and inspecting his meal. And then, deciding to spark some conversation, he asked, “Where’re you from, sir?”
“Looks good at least.” he smiled. “Originally I’m from Caprica,” replied Brent. “Until joining up, of course,” he smiled. “And yourself?”
The medic was beginning to seriously wonder what made the Lieutenant so upbeat and cheerful, and why he was so casual around an NCO. “I’m from Scorpia. Glenvale Harbour. Have you been, sir?”
“Couple of times on leave. A buddy told me about it,” he said, before taking a bite of casserole. “Very nice place!” he added.
Jamie appeared less enthusiastic about the food, despite feeling rather hungry. The sensation was oddly met with a near-complete loss of appetite, but he knew he’d have to force himself to eat. Not doing so was unhealthy, but in the meantime he procrastinated by twirling the spork within his food.
“Yes sir, it sure is…” he replied to Brent’s comment. He finally brought some of the casserole up and took a bite, forcing himself to swallow. It tasted bland, despite having quite the flavoursome aroma. “I lived in Caprica City for three years for university. Studied at Concord, the inner west.”
The young medic then suddenly asked, “So… do you often chat with NCOs, sir?”
“Truthfully, all I see is a colonial uniform,” Brent said. “That’s why I joined up, to be honest. Be a part of something other than my parents ‘we’re bankers look at us’ attitude.”
Jamie nodded slowly. “Ah, right. Fair enough, then.”
The two remained quiet for a while as they consumed their meals, with Jamie eating evidently much slower than his new companion. The crew seemed quite forward-thinking, at least from his interactions with both Vixen and Brent. Maybe it was a pilot thing, as he’d been told yesterday. Faced with the ever-present possibility of being thrown in the frontlines of death, they’d have to make the most of whatever time they had in the present. Perhaps he should give such a mindset a go, but he knew it’d be difficult.
The medic managed to finish only half of his casserole before shuffling from his seat. “Well, I think I might head off back to sickbay. Got a bit of work to do there… Sorry for the short chat,” he apologised.
“No worries,” Brent said.
“I’ll see you later,” Jamie gave a quick smile, as if making a promise. He stood up, carried his tray and headed off, feeling slightly guilty for having left the pilot alone. But with such a cheery persona, he was sure the man could find another companion to chatter with.
Brent returned the smile as he finished his meal.