Difference between revisions of "2019-11-04: Called You By Your Name"

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     "...been looking for you. Both of you."
     "...been looking for you. Both of you."
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Latest revision as of 22:04, 18 May 2020

  • Log: Called You By Your Name
  • Cast: Lunata Croze, Josephine Lovelace, Shalune Amira
  • Where: The Thames - Upper Deck
  • Date: November 05, 2019
  • Summary: Josie catches up to Lunata and has it out with her; Lunata and Shalune make Lunata's case. Past grievance is put to bed.

<Pose Tracker> Lunata Croze has posed.

    It's been a while since Lunata had another emotional breakdown mid-mission and has returned to the Thames where it's revealed that... yeah, actually, the Thames kind of has a lax policy on contracts as long as no one starts any trouble onboard the carrier. It's kind of the norm for a ship this size and when job postings go to-and-fro.

    You've got legit salvagers, pirates, honourable pirates, and so many allegiances and honorable agreements that get broken on a daily basis that the only thing most people can agree on is that the Thames is sacred, neutral ground.

    Lunata hasn't deviated away from the Berry Custom all that much, spending her time engineering fixes and repairs and getting it up to scratch after the last kerfluffle -- facing down Weltall was just one of the many surprises.

    The girl's seated with her jacket on with the cockpit open; it's a twelve foot mech so it's not exactly towering, and she's easily seen as she types away on a keyboard.

    Her face still kinda has a crack on it, but it's lesser, because of Lily's healing.

<Pose Tracker> Josephine Lovelace has posed.

    In short: one can easily say that the Thames is Josie's kind of place. The archaeologist has ever walked to the beat of her own drum, regardless of the lines that may 'officially' cut various groups -- Merian nautical law vs the local pirate trade, for instance, or the various grievances that sprout across Filgaia. ...Not that Josie has none of these herself, of course: she's hardly a 'neutral' force in and of itself.

    She's simply a selfish and idiosyncrastic force in and of itself.

    Heading on back after a survery of Fila del Fia -- few questions about the place answered, and she can't really say whether or not it even might have what she's looking for -- she had been odd-handedly killing time by browsing the local scrap market, which had then turned into a jaunt towards the Gear docks.

    Had, being the operative word.

    It's not the Gear she recognizes, but the small figure perched within the open cockpit: pure chance she'd looked up when she did.

    She breaks off towards it. Not running, but entering a purposeful sort of stride.

    The sort where the overall impression might be best termed 'murder'.


    ...She's using first names. This can't be good.

<Pose Tracker> Shalune Amira has posed.

    Shalune is working on the Berry Custom ... when she can. Truth be told, she's actually immeasurably proud that Lunata's picked up enough in the way of working knowledge to be able to do maintenance on the Gear herself, but as a craftswoman the mechanic readily admits she'd still rather double-check everything with her own eyes. It's not that she doesn't trust Lunata's work, so much as it's sheer force of habit.

    But there's a reason that she can't find much time to work on it.

    The pink-haired girl is sat crosslegged in the middle of a tarpaulin, the pot-like matter converter held between her crossed legs. To one side of her there is a myriad pile of components and parts, a large segmented container of screws divided into different sizes, and a complicated looking collection of what appears to be a variety of screwdriver attachments, some of them rather... unorthodox and probably self-made.

    Around her, arranged in little piles with scraps of paper tucked under them, are a half-dozen broken appliances in various states of disrepair. The one she's currently turned towards reads 'Mr. Walrus - cooling unit - probably new gears(?) definitely strip and clean this isnt fair why does lunie get to say my work is free jay would be so mad'

    She's grumbling a little to herself along the same lines as she follows her own instructions, tearing the air conditioner down into component pieces with the speed of someone entirely used to the work - then making a face at the sheer amount of damage done by salty water day in, day out.

    Josie's voice makes her look up in surprise, but--... something tells her to hide behind her small hill of scrap for the time being.

<Pose Tracker> Lunata Croze has posed.

    In truth, Lunata probably is surprising herself at just how... attached and transfixed she is to Gears. Maintaining them, upgrading them, finding spare parts and collecting what's valuable and not, even branching out into designing new things for them... and, of course, being lethally effective at piloting them.

    She's said it once.

    When everyone's wrapped in fifty feet of metal (12 feet for her, but who's counting), when everyone's wearing an iron mask...

    She has no reason to feel so different.

    She freezes when she hears the familiar voice, though.

    And she's calling her by her name.

    She's so surprised she can't even sass Shalune about Mr. Walrus and how she'd better not dismantle him completely because Mr. Walrus is life and Mr. Walrus is love and Servbot B is possibly in love with him?


<Pose Tracker> Josephine Lovelace has posed.

    She saw Shalune: a glance trends off in the girl's direction as she ducks behind the scrap.

    In a fleeting, distant way Josie is supremely aware of how she must appear right now: she's well nigh on the apparent warpath (though at least the Thames is neutral ground?).
    But the bulk of her doesn't care a whit about how she comes off right now.

    All she can remember is Lunata vanishing into the depths--

    "Lunata," Josie repeats, crossing her arms over her chest.

    "Get down from there. Now."

<Pose Tracker> Shalune Amira has posed.

    "Uh--" Shalune tries to interject as she peeks up from her pile, but Josie cuts her off with the primal voice equivalent of a thousand Moms speaking quietly and disapprovingly in unison. It instantly makes the pink-haired mechanic duck back down out of sight again, but she instantly grimaces and lifts her head back up because she's pretty sure that right now Josie and Lunata both count as hammers looking for a nail.

    "Look, uh, it's not like--" she starts to try to make peace before realizing she has no idea where to start making peace, or what particular beef Josie is going to have. Did Lunata shoot her down while on that job? She doesn't think so, but it's definitely possible. She wobbles a little, and ducks her head down again as she takes a rough cloth and some sandpaper and starts alternately sanding and buffing the gear she's just dug out of the unit in her lap.

    One part of her brain is firmly turned towards the impending discussion. The other is rather focused on saying some (relatively) mean things about Mr. Walrus and where exactly he can shove his air conditioning unit, even if Servbot B adores the grumpy old figure. At least, she adds to herself with some grim relief, he isn't a smoker.

<Pose Tracker> Lunata Croze has posed.

    Lunata scowls for a moment at Josephine's ardent request and the way she folds her arms down. A pause, as she reviews her initial decision to just shut the cockpit hatch and run off somewhere else. Josie's the kind of dogged person who'd probably keep following her. That would be even more annoying.

    She pauses, and just jumps on down. She's gotten rid of the Yevon robes, given they're full of bullet holes -- in its place is a crappy singlet and black compression shorts. Because apparently spats aren't universal.

    She doesn't look like she's been doing well, all told. Her look is wary and bordering on paranoid.

<Pose Tracker> Josephine Lovelace has posed.

    Josie glances Shalune's way -- or at least in the direction of the pile. There's not really wrath in her expression, per se, but neither can the look in her eyes be precisely termed... pleased. As the girl attempts to interject, Josie's response is to seemingly continue to stare at her, as if to bear her down by her gaze alone.

    Before her attention returns, again, to Lunata.

    Who ultimately comes down.

    Josie remains where she is, staring at the girl for a moment more.
    That crack on Lunata's face...
    Josie exhales sharply, her overall demeanor easing not in the slightest.

    "Did you even tell anyone you were okay?" she asks, her voice unusually controlled.

<Pose Tracker> Shalune Amira has posed.

    Shalune bites hard at her lip, her brow furrowing. She doesn't meet Josie's gaze until the engineer speaks, but there's a tension evident in her shoulders, and she hunches a little over her work for a few moments before she finally manages to let out her breath in a hurry and haul herself up and to her feet.

    She knows it's not exactly what Josie means with her question, but there's a kind of grim humour in asking Lunata whether she told anyone if she's okay - because that would mean she would have to be okay to tell anyone that, and that's kind of the whole stumbling block right there.

    It's the look on Lunata's face that carries her over to the other girl's side - she doesn't reach for Lunata for once, but makes her presence felt nearby, leaving it at that. "Jay's aware. We've seen some of the others, too, just not all of them. I mean, we're all kind of scattered right now anyway," she pipes up, rubbing at her hair. "Besides, I promised I'd go after Lunie and see her out safe, so I did."

<Pose Tracker> Lunata Croze has posed.

    "I told Lily," Lunata answers.

    Looking at Josephine's expression honestly wound up being easier than she thought -- maybe because her expression kind of matches what she was expecting. Not outright anger, but one of just... more disappointment. Or at least, that's what she's choosing to take out of it.

    "I told Lily and we sat down to talk for a while and she healed my face," she answers.

    She frowns just a bit deeper. "Haven't seen Leon. Haven't seen you. Cried together with Jay. Then we shot at each other with Gears."

    A pause, as she scratches at her cheek.

    "But no, I'm not okay. That all wouldn't have happened if I was."

<Pose Tracker> Josephine Lovelace has posed.

    Lunata told Lily.

    ...It mostly just reminds her that she hasn't seen most of the Black Wolves since she arrived here, which is at least partially on her. It's not like in Spira -- there are Memory Cubes about. But that, she tells herself, is besides the point.

    At least when she parted with the Wolves it was under more understandably difficult circumstances.

    She hadn't been the one falling apart as she plummeted into the Abyss--

    "So you saw Jay."


    "She was looking for you, you know."

    Her attention swings over Shalune's way. "And the same goes for you, kiddo-- are you trying to shave a few years off my life?"

    Wait, what does that mean for how Josie feels--

    Which is when Lunata voices further that she's not okay.

    "...That's not what I meant, dammit," Josie snaps in response, glowering briefly at the younger girl. "And you know it. The least you could do is post a message or something in the Memory Cube. Let us know you made it to Filgaia."

    She pauses a moment.

    "...been looking for you. Both of you."

<Pose Tracker> Shalune Amira has posed.

    Shalune winces to herself visibly - beyond the way she's stood a little behind Lunata. She'd already expected Lunata's response to be blunt, but that doesn't make it any easier to swallow or accept, as much as she's trying her best to do so. And she'd expected Josie's response - caring and blunt in equal measure, but not quite used to expressing that well.

    "You're pretty good at doing that yourself," she quips back to Josie. It's kind of automatic, because she kind of regrets it the next instant - but the mechanic sucks in a breath and keeps going. "I know. We-- we know. I'm sorry. But when we arrived it was right into a big pile of chaos, and we never really managed to get much of a moment to breathe to let us get around to it. You know?"

    "Between Jay and you guys and the way everything happened, we were both kind of left wondering what to do next, and I don't... really have a good answer for that yet. Not for Lunie or for myself. Just kinda been in a holding pattern, I guess," she mumbles the last part awkwardly to herself, and that probably speaks volumes for how she's doing compared to normal.

<Pose Tracker> Lunata Croze has posed.


    Lunata's tone hasn't changed much, perhaps much like Josephine's in turn. But it's clear she's solidifying her presentation as much as possible to avoid falling apart, rather than to suppress any kind of anger or emotion.

    "I should've. But I wanted to run away again. Still want to run away. Maybe I'm running away right now."

    She looks towards Josephine with a quiet sag. "It's because I'm not okay that I didn't leave a memo."

    A longer pause...

    "Right now... I took up a mercenary contract with some pirates. Started wondering in the middle of a fight that Jay showed up to..."

    Her face falls a bit.

    "I started thinking about the Wels again."

<Pose Tracker> Josephine Lovelace has posed.

    "Tch." Josie's reaction is to grimace, as Shalune calls her out. She lifts a hand to wave it through the air. "I was busy with the cannon. It was a bit of a mess," she says, letting it loose into the air as if it were a poorly filled balloon. It's not really an excuse.
    That's fine, too.

    Shalune knows. They both know. Josie averts her gaze. "Chaos, huh... that's one way to put it." Her attention redirects back Shalune's way again and once more she makes a face as if she's eaten something bitter. "Just have to bring reason into this, don't you, kiddo."

    Lunata admits...

    She wanted to run away. Still wants to.
    Still might be running.

    Josie just closes her eyes and reaches up with her left hand to pinch the bridge of her nose.


    She sighs, and doesn't say anything for a long moment.

    "...Look, if you want to run, that's fine," she says at last. There is another pause. "You wouldn't be the first," Josie adds, dropping her hand away and opening her eyes.

    Even her expression can't remain grim forever; it can't help but gentle -- if only just. Her gaze lingers between the both of them, hovering there for a long moment.

    "...But don't think this means that either've you are off the hook for all this. Got it?" She shifts as if her metaphorical feathers were ruffled. "Maybe I should have you strip and clean the cannon for me. How's that one for 'something to do'?"

    But the fact is she's just settling back into old ways, herself, hunting around for the next step.
    And nearly dreading it, now, as close as she is.

    "A mercenary contract, eh? Don't suppose they're still hirin'?"

    She doesn't seem like she's joking--

    But even that flicker of interest fades out and dies when Lunata finishes her thought.


    She closes the gap between herself and Lunata and reaches out to--

    Muss the girl's hair.

    "Listen. The day you turn into a Wels, I'll finish you off myself. Even if I gotta go and bother Ge Ramda himself to do it proper. Got it?"

<Pose Tracker> Shalune Amira has posed.

    Shalune's face draws into a thin line. "I was busy with many cannons," she shoots back glumly, then lifts her arms in a rare rant. "Lunie told everyone I'd do work for free! Like she basically stood up in the market and went 'hey gimme this stuff, Shalune'll pay in labour'! It's true, but you're not supposed to say it out loud!"

    Her own shoulders sag, but there's a quiet smile on her face. "... that's, um, that's kind of what I do, I guess. I'm the grounded one," she repeats the long-standing joke, which only turned into a joke when it turned out to be true as well. Carefully, she steps forward enough to catch Lunata's hand in hers.

    "I can't believe you fought against Jay, or at least stood on opposite sides. ... I can barely believe you fought against Big Shal," she adds with a bit of a sulk, but with a fond smile as well. "But I think she was rooting for you, in her own way."

    Her good cheer evaporates at the mention of the Wels, and even Josie's well-meaning conviction can't remove the creeping uncertainty of Shalune's practical nature. There's a dangerous moment of deja vu, of a touchpaper that's lit Lunata's temper before - though at least out of the two of them, the mechanic reckons Josie would be much more prepared to put a bullet into Ge Ramda than Jay ever would.

    She swallows the rest of that thought, and instead tries to imagine Josie's patience trying to deal with a trio of Servbots. ... she squints, and lightly crosses her eyes. "Um. I think they kind of pay under the going rate..."

<Pose Tracker> Lunata Croze has posed.

    "I'm trying to get you to stop the habit," Lunata grouses back to Shalune, even if it spectacularly backfired on her because Shalune basically took every job and did free labour for everyone in the end.

    "I don't know about the stripping, but I'll clean the cannon." A pause. "Honestly, I've been finding some comfort in Gear work."

    Josephine tells her that it's fine to run, but...


    That's perhaps the most tangled core of Lunata's feelings at the moment. "... I don't feel I can run," she admits. "And I feel like the smallest person for even wanting to. I feel exactly like one of the faceless bar patrons in a story who screams and runs at the first sign of trouble, while the hero stands boldly and draws their weapon."

    She really can't get past that analogy at all.

    "I wouldn't expect you'd let us off the hook that easily, but... sure, I'll tell you if anything comes my way."

    A pause, and she sucks in a breath as Josie promises she'd finish her off herself.

    "Then I'd say..." Lunata stares uncertainly to Shalune, as her hair gets mussed. Her hair musses real easy, with how naturally messy it looks in the first place. "All's Wels... that ends Wels."

    Beat. A second beat.

    "It's... a joke. I'm trying to make a joke. Did it work?"

<Pose Tracker> Shalune Amira has posed.

    "... you're sleeping on the couch tonight," Shalune puffs back, barely missing a beat - but she's doing her best not to snort-giggle, and her hands are clasped around one of Lunata's in support all the same.

<Pose Tracker> Josephine Lovelace has posed.

    "'Many cannons', huh. I bet the Nostos is bigger."

    If not at least 'full of caked-on sand'. Which may not quite be the case for the others, as such?
    Hopefully not, anyway, or there are a lot of important questions to be asked around here... But the real issue -- and Josie's haphazard excuses -- are beside the point here.

    She glances between the two friends, her brow creasing, and not for the first (or last, probably) time wonders if 'friends' are all it is.

    "Hero syndrome, huh," Josie remarks, a slight crooked smile on her face in spite of it all. "Listen, you know yourself best, kiddo," at least they're back on more even-keel terrain here, so to speak? "and if you've gotta be the one pulling out their sword and haulin' off into danger..." Her smile slips back into a grimace. "...Well, you get the idea."

    There is a long pause.

    "...Try workin' on your analogies some, though. Ok, kiddo? That one's kinda... weirdly specific-like."

    She ducks her head in a nod after that. "Good, 'cause I need the money." She glances at Shalune. "Even if it's under rate. ...Really, now, is that all what pirates're paying? Must be rough times on the high seas..."

    Before she approaches Lunata to muss up her head.

    And Lunata--


    It's not, technically, even worth that (this is a Josie-level pun) but perhaps that's why Josie stifles a giggle-snort like that, shaking her head after. "Kiddo, you've got to get better puns."

    As if she can talk.