He shouldn't be here.
He has less than a quarter arn to report to the docking bay. This is his first real combat mission, and it will not do to keep the battalion waiting. He has suffered far too much to be where he is to risk his superiors' displeasure now.
The techs move aside to let him pass. The commandos nod to him as he walks by, a casual acknowledgement that still catches him off guard, though he graduated officer training two monens ago. He has to remind himself there is nothing in his outward appearance anymore that marks him as a despised conscript, nothing in his uniform that shows he is different from them.
It is a new feeling.
A feeling he will have little time to cherish, if he doesn't get to the docking bay soon. He can hear the rippling of water overlapping with children's voices as he enters the planetary terrain reconstruction. The grass is soft beneath his feet, but he has no time to stand blinking in the sudden bright artificial sunlight. He still isn't sure what mad impulse drives him here.
A whistle blows, and a formation dissolves, officer trainees moving down toward the water for a brief rest before the next drill. He stands rigidly correct, unable to find a smile as Tauvo runs toward him, the surprised delight in his brother's face turning to dread as he takes in the helmet under his arm, the pistol at his belt, the pulse rifle slung over his right shoulder.
"Only for a little while." Six weekens. Or forever. He has left on extended training exercises before, but this is real. Within four solar days he will be facing aliens trying to kill him.
Underneath the black body armor, Tauvo can't see the hard knot of fear settling in his stomach, can't hear his heart pounding. He is afraid of so many things, but he knows it does not matter as long as no one can see. Sometimes it feels like he has been afraid for the past ten cycles, since the day the recruiters came. By now the fear is a constant companion he has learned to ignore.
"Bialar--" Tauvo hesitates before reaching out to grip his arm, even though no one seems to be paying them any attention.
"Don't think about me." The words are sharper than he intended. At fifteen cycles Tauvo is too old for reassuring lies, even if he had time to offer them.
He doesn't have time for this, doesn't know why he came. If he is late for deployment he will be severely reprimanded. If his superiors discover why he delayed they could both be punished, even assigned to different ships. Senior officers may look the other way if a tech clings to family ties, as long as his work does not suffer. But he is a junior officer of infantry now, and the rules are very different.
He tells himself he doesn't need this; he is only here for Tauvo's sake, because Tauvo needs him, will never forgive him if anything happens, if he leaves without saying goodbye. But he knows it isn't true.
"You will see me when I return. Until then, you must focus on your training."
Tauvo's hand is shaking, holding his arm tight enough to bruise, but he nods. "I will."
He licks dry lips, forces a smile. Tears are filling Tauvo's eyes, but he will not chide him for that now. Instead he wipes them away with his thumb, resting one gloved hand against his brother's cheek for a microt.
He does not say everything will be all right. They are not children anymore.
Please post a comment on this story.
Title: All We Know of Heaven
Author: Flora [email] [website]
Details: Standalone | PG | gen | 3k | 03/24/04
Characters: Crais, Tauvo
Summary: They are not children anymore.
Notes: Set before the Premiere, spoils season one.
Disclaimer/Other: Any comments, suggestions, or criticism is very much appreciated! I don't own any of these characters, I'm not making any money off of this, please don't sue.
[top of page]
|Home/QuickSearch + Random + Upload + Search + Contact + GO List|