Day 015: A Shaky Summit
Summary: Quinn, Fiona, and Morgan summit with Oxfor kom Trikru for a ceasefire. It is very, very shaky.
Date: 27 May 2016
Related: We Are Grounders
Quinn Fiona Morgan Oxfor 

Ball's Bluff, Outside of Coesbur
See opening pose.
15 Days After Landing

It is early evening with Oxfor and the three delinquent making the final climb to a bluff just to the north of the village. The climb had been quiet, particularly from the massive Grounder — an almost meditative calm.

Once they reach the top of the climb, they find themselves in a grassy knoll surrounded by trees. There is a low wall — just short of waist high on most of them — that surrounds a square of low grass. The wall is just about ten meters on any side, with a break in the center of one side that allows easy entry onto the grass. There is an old, battered picnic table and attached benches in the center of the lawn, just over a giant slab of concrete that had once been the base of a flagpole. Tucked sporadically in the grass are four white headstones that had once been apart of a circle surrounding the flagpole. There is a sign in the corner to the right of the wall's opening that reads in battered, faded lettering, 'NOTICE: No Firearms or Weapons Allowed on this Property.'

It is then quite apparent that they are not the only ones here as two of Oxfor's warriors are standing just outside the wall in their skull masks, still as statues.

Morgan is happy to stay quiet on the climb up; he's busy looking around and taking note of the route and what they're passing. Plus the view. When they get tot he top, he walks over to the wall to look out from the higher vantage point between the trees. Turning back, he moves over toward the table then looks to Oxfor for the next step.

Fiona is likewise quiet on the climb. She seems to be inclined to take in the view, and as previously instructed, comes bearing no weapons. She regards the remnants of civilized society with some bemusement, and as Morgan does, looks to take her cues from Oxfor.

Oxfor gestures. "Sit." He instructs the three, and takes a seat himself. He sits opposite of them as a show of sides — two sides coming together. This leaves Quinn, Fiona, and Morgan a little cramped on the opposite bench. He sighs as he sits, and the entire table gives a little groan of protest. But then everything settles. He looks between the three. He breathes out a slow breath. "You are new to this, I will be patient… we are here to decide on terms to cease hostilities between our two peoples." He nods heavily. "But I have questions that must be answered first…"

Morgan glances at Fi and gestures for her to take the center so he and Quinn can take the ends. Once she sits, he perches on the end of the bench and rests his arms on the table. "Is it okay to just talk and stuff or is there a formality to this that we need to follow?"

Fiona hikes a leg over the bench, brings the other one up and over, and seats herself in the middle. Lacing her fingers together and resting her hands on the table. "We also have questions." she says. "You've been gracious as our host, so by all means, put yours on the table first."

Oxfor nods, resting his large forearms on the table. "No… not with me. With the kruheda or Heda… perhaps… but I am understanding that you do not know all our customs." He grins a full, white smile. "I won't hold it against you." Then he sobers once more, looking at the three. "Why were you sent from the sky?" He looks between them, and spreads out a hand a bit. "I have heard many stories, many sides… I want to know why your heda sent you here."

Morgan nods at the unsurprising question but just looks to Fi.

"The Ark is contained system." Fiona begins. "There is only so much air, so much water, so much food, so much space. It was meant to sustain us for a very long time, long enough to be certain that the radiation and damage to the earth would be healed. But it hasn't. The Ark is running out of all the things that are needed to sustain human life. So we were sent here, both as a way to conserve resources and buy more time, and to see if the earth was finally livable."

"Three centuries." Morgan adds once Fi has given the basics. "We were supposed to live in orbit three hundred years. We thought all the people had been killed."

Oxfor rumbles, "No wonder you were so surprised." Then he folds his fingers together, again slipping into thoughtful silence. When he speaks next, he does carefully. "And why were you the ones chosen… mere children?" He puts up his hand, as if anticipating a reaction. "You are all young," he explains. "And as my scouts have seen, very inexperienced. A risky choice… for scouts."

There's a glance askance to Morgan, before she regards Oxfor levelly. "Because we were expendable." she says frankly. She's not willing to expound on that immediately, she wants to see how far Oxfor will push the line of pursuit.

Morgan seems willing to let Fi do the talking for the moment.

There is something in Oxfor's expression — a small twitch at the edge of his jaw. He looks between the three, and then fixes his attention on Fiona for now. "And why were you expendable? If your people have been trying, bit by bit, to survive until the time was right, sacrificing children does not seem to fit that."

"I've got this." Morgan tells Fi and looks back across the table at Oxfor. He's been thinking about how to answer this question for a while since it was sure to come up. "I'm sure you've been told everyone who came down broke the Ark's laws in some way. And there's only one punishment for breaking the law, no matter which it is: death. Some might have been pardoned when they turned eighteen but who knows. Letting rebels, malcontents, and other law breakers live under emergency conditions is probably not a really great idea. Not that they told anyone things were as bad as they are." he adds to the Steheda. "There's something they are good for though. Out of everyone on the Ark, they decided to send us. That we'd have the best chance to survive and report back. You lead your people. You know who are the ones who'll take action and who will sit back and wait to see what happens. We were expendable since we were already sentenced to death but we're also the ones who want more and who won't just sit back and wait. And in return, the Chancellor did pardon everyone and he's updated on what happens down here."

"You live an extremely hard life here. And I know you think we're soft." Fiona says quietly. "But the way our lives were tough, just in a different way. It didn't matter what you did - if you stole food because your family was starving, if you killed someone, if you took more medicine than you were allotted to save your mother, or got into a fight. The only outcome was execution. Floating - being sucked out into space."

Oxfor is silent, listening to the pair. "Or being pardoned should you have committed a child's crime," the giant corrects Fiona. "Some, as Morgan has said, could be pardoned." Then he shakes his head, looking serious. "It is not my place to question your laws, but it is my place to know whether or not you are likely to break laws again. If we agree to an accord, and you break it… Trikru justice will be far more severe than your Skaikru." Then he folds his fingers together once more, looking at them in silent question.

Morgan just nods, not having more to add at the moment.

"The circumstances of how and why laws were broken on the Ark are complicated. This is a different world. A different life. We don't want to cause problems, we want to live in peace, but if we're kept ignorant of how to fit in, then situations like what happened at the river are the result." Fiona flattens her hands on the table. "Our people are coming, and they will - they do - want peace."

Oxfor shakes his head again. "Our laws are not your laws, Fiona kom Skaikru… you are not beholden to us nor the Coalition." Not yet, at least. He breathes out a heavy sigh, shifting on the bench. "Alright, your people are coming and they want peace… but, I have my people talking about missiles, and nukes…" He shows his teeth a bit. "And guns."
New Job Submitted (#319): Water Mill

"And that's just people talking." Fiona says frankly. "Whatever weapons we have, and whatever weapons we may have when the dropships come down, we have no reason to turn them on our allies."

Morgan just nods his agreement.

Oxfor leans back a bit, his expression grave. "No, Fiona kom Skaikru… whatever weapons you have and whatever weapons you may have is very important." He taps his thick finger on the table in a snarp rap. "The Trikru long ago destroyed all of our stores of guns… we will not permit them to return."

"Why would you do that?" inquires Fiona. Putting aside the debate of Skaikru's weapons, she needs to understand why they have that perspective to begin with.

Morgan would like to hear this answer too.

The steheda is silent for a long moment, and then he stands. It is a heavy movement, causing his long jacket to fall about him. He points to the southwest, moving around the table a bit. "The Mountain," he explains. "The Mountain Men… the maunon… they destroyed two of our villages… burned them to the ground… because we decided it was time to make a move against the Mountain. And in the smoking remains of a village… we could no longer arm ourselves against them."

Fiona is silent for a long time. "You avoid approaching the mountain, you avoid the appearance of aggression, and in exchange they leave you alone?" Fiona asks. "And you think that the presence of armaments carried by our people might incite them?" She's piecing something together at any rate, head turning this way and that to guage the reaction of the others.

"We can certainly tell them what happened." Morgan says. "And to stay away from the mountain." He glances at Fiona and Quinn a moment before adding "If it would make you more comfortable, we'd be willing to listen to suggestions on a good place for them to land. One well away from the Mountain so it's unlikely they'll come into contact. We also don't want to inconvenience any of the Trikru either."

"I know it will," Oxfor replies without missing a beat. "We do not anger the Mountain." Then he turns to look at them, his arms crossing heavily. "Your people are questions that are unanswered… to us, and to them." He nods his chin toward the Mountain. "To go to that Mountain is to ask for death… death or madness." Then he shakes his head at Morgan's question, and his voice snaps out a sharp and bellowing, "No. You come to our lands — any lands of the Coalition — bearing guns, then we will go to war… we will slaughter you so they do not slaughter us." He looks at Morgan, shaking his head. "This is not your land anymore… you come down here, you submit the Heda's law." Then he looks at the three now, weighing each in turn. "We gave up those weapons, as can you."

"That's not going to happen." Quinn points out, shaking her head, "Even if we can get those in the camp to agree, you're not going to get every single person on the Ark to agree to that. It just…wont happen."

"We are neither Trikru nor Coalition, as you've said before." Fiona jumped a little in her seat when he bellowed, but she's since recovered, even if her hands have balled up and her knuckles are white. "We can agree to respect the boundaries and stay away from the mountain. That is your law. But you chose to destroy your munitions, and unless we are part of your Coalition, that choice can't be made for us."

Morgan shakes his head. "That doesn't seem likely." he says, echoing Quinn. "But it's also not something that will be decided here. You don't speak for the Trikru, right? What we, the three of us, wanted from this summit is to come to an agreement between our camp and your village. If we can be at peace and help each other, then perhaps the Ark, the Skaikru, and the Trikru can as well. It would be a good start, at least. But we'll definitely tell the Chancellor what you've said about guns and the danger of the mountain."

Oxfor looks at the three, gazing passing over each in turn. He casts a glance to the two warriors still standing watch silently at the entrance to the walled grass patch. He then exhales, moving to retake his side of the picnic table. He has lost that good nature, his jaw set and eyes serious. "No… I do not speak for the Trikru." The words are rumbled from the depth of his chest. He looks at Fiona now. "What does your camp offer the Coesbur in exchange to cease more hostilities?"

Quinn glances towards Fiona and Morgan at that, but otherwise she takes this chance to just keep her mouth shut. She tucks her hands into her pockets, hunching her shoulders a bit as she goes back to silently watching.

"We are prepared to offer you knowledge." Fiona is hoping he won't laugh as she launches into details. "You've already seen the efficiency and training that our medics can offer. Imagine what mechanics and engineers might be able to assist you with. While the Ark is still functioning, we can reach out and get additional knowledge to assist you - knowledge that was lost in the nuclear destruction for countless years, we've managed to save on the Ark. Coesbur could be the first Trikru village to find that knowledge again." Hopefully that would be a pretty big coup for Oxfor himself.

Oxfor lifts his hand, stopping Fiona, something Morgan said prickling the steheda more. "Are the people on your Ark not Skaikru?" He looks at Quinn and Fiona in turn, and then back to Morgan. "Are you setting yourselves apart?" Then he looks to Fiona. "How can you promise resources from your Ark if you do not speak for them?"

"You call us Skaikru. That's not our word. I call it the Ark but then decided to use your word for us." Morgan explains.

"Because we already have the assurance of the Ark's assistance on our behalf." Fiona replies. "If there's something you wanted to know…like for example, ways to improve the quality of your farmers' crops? We could communicate with the Ark and provide any number of potential ways for you to do so. To that end, we can invite you speak to the Ark's Chancellor on the comm…or someone of your choosing. And you still have the practical skills of our medics, and the other relevant skills amongs those of us already on the ground. Most of us come out of apprenticeships with working knowledge in our fields, despite the fact that we're young. I'm sure we've got Agro Station kids who could do a lot for you."

Quinn's eyes flick towards Fiona, then back to Oxfor, keeping herself fairly quiet, but she nods in agreement, both to what Morgan says and what Fiona says.

"Most of us have been studying a skill since we were twelve or so." Morgan adds.

FS3> Opposed Roll — Fiona=Deception+3 Vs Oxfor=Resolve
Fiona: Good Success Oxfor: Good Success
Net Result: Oxfor wins - Marginal Victory

The steheda nods slightly to Morgan's correction, and his shoulders shift again. He looks at Fiona though, and breathes out deeply from his nose. "Our crops are fine," he says, perhaps a bit dismissively. He crosses his arms. "On your behalf?" The Steheda looks at Fiona now, his expression very difficult to read. "Allow me to ask directly, Fiona kom Skaikru… do you come to this table, speaking as a person of the Ark…" Now using Morgan's words very specifically. "… or are you apart?"

Fiona is considering the question very carefully. There's a fluttering in her stomach because so much hangs on this question. She looks to either side of her, trying to get a read on Morgan and Quinn's expressions. "When we talk about the curent cease of hostilities, it's on behalf of those of us already here. In this matter, these are the people I speak for. Our chancellor - our heda, has said we may speak for the Ark as we may need to. That he would trust us to have the wisdom to know what we could realistically offer. He wants to make sure the rest come down safely and without causing upset amongst the Trikru. But right now, this," she gestures to them, to him, "Is about making sure the people who are on earth now stop fighting." She takes a breath. "You said it yourself. We're young. We're trying. We just want to do what is right."

"I'm apart, Oxfor." Morgan tells the man. "I'll never forgive them for what they did to my parents. Even if things change when they're on the ground, I can't go back. Not to stay. But Cam's dad is there. Fiona's parents are there. The people deserve to be able to live their lives in peace, hopefully better ones than we had on the Ark. I want peace between your village and the camp for my sake and those of the others who came down. I want peace between the Trikru and the Skaikru for the sake of my friends' parents. That's how I can speak for the Ark."

And still. Quinn remains silent as the grave. Her eyes flick first to Fiona, listening to her response, then to Morgan to listen to his comment, then she turns her attention back to the big Grounder.

Oxfor stares at Fiona. "You have not answered my question, Fiona kom Skaikru… so, I will wait until you do." His expression does change, his eyes do not leave hers for a long moment. In fact, he slowly looks at all three in turn. "Are you here as people of the Ark? Who do you speak for? Do you speak for children who were pardoned from crimes… some crimes that would carry the Death of a Thousand Cuts should you be Trikru? If that is so, then you can only offer what children can offer." He shakes his head. "You are young, so I will explain… if you come here in bad faith, claiming to negotiate for those of whom you are not apart… you can only offer what you can give. If you are not part of them, then you cannot offer what they can give, and I should speak to them about that." Then he holds up a hand. "Either way, I can speak to you about what you can give." Then he looks to Morgan, and shakes his head. "Then you cannot speak for the Ark if you are not one of them. It would be like me speaking for the Azgeda… I am not one of them, I cannot speak for them."

"I find that my answer is not nearly as clear. I want to be part, I want to help make things right." Not that she clarifies that. "But I will also not return to exactly the way things were, and would rather be apart at that point. But right now? I'm part of the Ark."

Again, Fiona is quiet. She looks down at the table, at her hads. They need this, and whatever allegience she keeps now can potentially change later. But she can speak truly in this moment. She lifts her gaze, determined. "Ai laik Feyona kom Skaikru, en ai chich op kom Ark."

Morgan shakes his head. "It's not the same at all, Oxfor. I'm not sure who the Azgeda are but it's probably a safe bet to say you weren't born to them. You didn't grow up with them. You were never one of them. Their leader probably doesn't know you but even if he does, he hasn't given you permission to speak for him. The Chancellor has. And he knows exactly how I feel." Gesturing to the others, he adds "We've all spoken to him recently. Fiona most recently, I think." Whatever she just said. "He's put his trust in us." Which he kind of hates.

"Does he know that you come to this table to speak for him, to speak for his people, when you wish to never actually be apart of them?" Oxfor fixes Morgan with a steady stare. "I would be most surprised if he knew, and was still comfortable in having someone who speaks with such pain and hate for him and those who he leads to speak for him and his people." Then he shakes his head, breathing out a heavy sigh. "It is not in good faith." He turns then to Fiona, studying her carefully. He then nods slowly. "Alright. But I will not be able to accept any terms unless your heda agrees to them, and I know he agrees to them…"

Quinn glances towards Morgan, frowning just a fraction before she turns her eyes back to Oxfor, "He is aware of how some of those already on the ground feel, and has given permission for us to speak for him. So, well.." She shrugs her shoulders, "We can move forward with what we can, and perhaps arrange for you to talk to him if you want. Maybe."

"Either you or someone you pick can speak with him ove our comm system." Fiona nods in accord with Quinn. She's not thrilled at the notion of being questioned on the point, but Oxfor's gone out of his way to be patient, at least in her mind. "With that in mind, we should continue the cease fire on both sides. Jaha still wants to make sure any designated landing sites don't damage Trikru living spaces or crops. We have a map to work with for that."

"I'd say he knows how I feel, yeah." Morgan tells the man. It would be a little hard not to. "But we're also here to speak for the ones already down, not make terms for the Ark. That's for the leader of your people to be part of." They covered that earlier. He reaches up a hand to run it over his hair. "Do you really need him to say he doesn't want us to be at war? He doesn't. Do you need him to say that he wants us to help each other? He does. That's what those of us here want and we hope you do too."

Oxfor nods heavily. "Alright." He looks to Morgan and then back to the other two. "You have offered knowledge, but knowledge is vague. We don't require help with crops. I hear you grow your plants in water, we grow our plants in soil." He gestures a bit. "You can offer some healing expertise, but we still know more about the healing value of the herbs and plants in our area. You cannot offer us food, you cannot offer us technology, and you cannot offer us weapons." He looks at them now. "So, what do you offer?"

"You have access to the local herbs and plants, but healing is an area of many different branches of knowledge." Fiona points out. "And our techniques and knowledge of internal medicine are not something you currently have." She looks to Morgan for confirmation of that, before adding, "We may have gained our food though hydroponics, but you have to understand, it's all with the idea of sustaining knowledge that was expected to be needed for a return to Earth, to help make it livable. So just because we used water doesn't mean that the knowledge we've saved from the time before and the advancements that have been made aren't applicable down here. And again, there is the opportunity to access the archive of knowledge that is available via the Ark's database, and since we are of the Ark," an askance glance to Morgan and Quinn before she refocuses on Oxfor, "That is something we can offer."

"There's a lot of things that are available on the Ark, databases being one of them. There might be the opportunity for technological trade, but that's not an area I'm familiar enough with to say what items and types would be able to be traded and shared." Quinn mentions her shoulders lifting, "The best thing for that is to ask one of the tech people the details on what can be shared. But we /can/ share access to things, in general."

"Your healers are very skilled." Morgan agrees immediately when Fi gets done. "They did an excellent job of healing me and Quinn. And as you say, they can teach us something about the plants in the area. But there are so many more things we can show you than the one we used on your people." He touches his chest where the arrow wound is. "Open wounds can be healed faster and with less chance of infection. It's possible to transfuse blood from one person to another to replace what they've lost. It's won't be easy figuring out the best way to do it with the equipment available but it's possible. And that will make surgery possible if we can figure out a safe way to render people unconscious." As far as Ark specific things, he'll just leave that to Fi.

"I challenge you to tell Chesa kom Trikru that her families' techniques are inferior to yours," Oxfor says, his rumbling voice having a touch of warning. Then he regards them in turn, shifting his shoulders uncertainly. "And what sort of technology do you require to perform such things?"

"I don't think any of us has said anything about the techniques of your healers being inferior." Fiona lifts her brows at that. "But a good healer, a smart healer knows that when they have access to knowledge in how to save lives that they didn't have before, they should acquire it. Don't mistake what we're offering as an insult to what knowledge is already yours."

"Not inferior. Different." Morgan corrects. "I definitely want to learn from your healers in turn. We know different things. Our farmers know different things than yours. As for technology, I don't intend to rely on it since there's no guarantee I'll have it with me when it's needed. Instead, I want to figure out how to do things with what we have right now. Like those needles Keta had were perfect to drain the chest cavity of fluid. They weren't made for that but who cares. They worked. The tubing we used to create the suction wasn't perfect but it was available. It can also be improved on. Technology helps but it's knowledge that saves lives."

Oxfor shakes his head. "Chesa kom Trikru is a farmer of our village." Then he considers Morgan with a flat uncertainty. He then nods slowly, thoughtfully. "I can only, at this time, accept any terms that come from your small camp… and not from your skaigeda." He frowns as he stares at them all now, his heavy arms crossing at his chest. There is something unsettled in his expression, but he doesn't speak toward it. He settles for uncomfortable silence while he thinks.

"Let's come at this from a different direction." Fiona suggests. "What is it you're looking for, Oxfor kom Trikru? We have medics, mechanics, engineers here on the ground. So what could we potentially give you that you would find to be of use?"

Morgan watches Oxfor think, nodding at the question Fiona asks. But he does add quietly "And best of all, I think, is that no one needs to get hurt. No one benefits when that happens."

Oxfor chuckles in a deep resonance. "We have lived successfully, and well, for generations, Fiona kom Skaikru. We have no need for anything that you can offer, save for the techniques you have shown Keta to relieve the sickness that came with you from the sky. And you did that to secure these talks with me so that we stop hostilities with you." He says this all very pointedly. "You are a mere hundred… we are five hundred. Nor do we fear more of you coming from the sky." Even if he is still greatly disturbed by the guns that will soon be on his lands — if they are not already. "I am here out of pity," he says finally, looking at all three, "because you are lost, and very far from home." Then he sighs heavily, shoulders falling. "You come to the table with very little… and only two of the three are here to speak on behalf of your entire people, and one is here to speak for himself." Then he considers the three. "You say you can offer alternative methods to healing. Explain those."

Morgan shrugs at the question. "It's hard to say for certain until I know more of what you know and what you can do. But for instance… We don't really use plants and herbs. What we do is grow them and then use them to make medicine. We can extract the part of the plant that is medicine and concentrate it into measured doses. A simplistic version of that is to boil willow bark. The bark contains salicin which is the medicine. Boiling it brings it into the water which can then be drunk so it enters the body more quickly than chewing on the bark." Touching his chest again, he says "The arrow wound. Your healers did a great job of healing it. But it would heal faster if the wound was sewn up. I can tell your people what shape to make the needles needed to do that and we can experiment with what makes the best sutures and I can show them the proper way of doing it. That kind of thing."

Fiona seems inclined to let Morgan offer examples of internal medicine, remaining quiet, though something Morgan says does make her cinch her brows momentariyly.

"We boil," Oxfor says patiently. "But you know as well as I that your camp is not capable in making medicines. No more than we are." He then nods soberly. "Teaching how to sew a wound is of value, but…" He looks at Morgan. "I would like Keta to speak to your healers, and see such a thing performed. Should she agree it be a useful technique, then we can consider it." He crosses his arms again, looking steady in his seat on the bench. "What material goods can you offer? Knowledge of wound healing is a start, but not enough."

"We can offer man power." Quinn speaks up when Oxfor questions material resources, "We also might be able to locate supply depots that were left when we left the planet. There might be clothes, blankets, medicines, things like that in them. We can offer a reasonable portion of those goods."

"Not capable at the moment. It's only been two weeks." Morgan points out then suggests "Show him the map."

Fiona shoots Morgan a look, but pulls out the map, laying it out on the table so it's right side up toward Oxfor.

Oxfor looks at Morgan, but says nothing. He is more interested in what Quinn has to say, and he nods slowly. "And what if the materials on your dropship?" He looks at the three. "The metal would be of great use to us." Then he looks down at the map as it is extracted, and he leans forward to look at it.

"It's possible that we can arrange that, but only on the conditions that the Ark has landed safely, or you help us find other shelter." Quinn glances over towards Fiona and Morgan when she says it, then folds her arms across her chest, "It's a resource that we're willing to share."

Morgan nods at what Quinn says. "Just a small fraction of the metal could be used to make enough suture needles for everyone."

"Right now the dropship is our only source of secure shelter." Fiona points out, amending, "But we can see if there's any of it that can be spared. We'd need to talk to our mechanics."

Oxfor nods heavily. "So, as I hear it… you offer us the knowledge of improving the healing of wounds, possible supply depots, and possible metal from your ship." He looks at the three, waiting to see if he missed anything.

Morgan reaches out to tap the map. "We can make you a copy. Surely your hunters and warriors will find it useful to know where every hill is, the streams, the ridges." Everything surrounding Mount Weather. "Though some things have changed in a hundred years I'd guess."

"Those are things we can offer, yes." Fiona says, praying that it will be enough while doing her best to keep her expression serene.

Oxfor looks at the map, and then back up at Morgan and the others. He grunts a bit, but says nothing about the map. He looks thoughtful. "A ceasefire then… between my village, and your camp. Long enough for you to show Keta this technique you speak of, to find three supply depots that are of use to my people, and for a third of your dropship's materials."

He pauses long enough for there to be a subtle tension in the air. "Should this all prove useful, then I will bring this ceasefire to my kruheda."

"So there is a ceasefire for as long as it takes to locate three depots that have supplies your people can use?" Quinn wonders, making sure that she's clear on exactly what he's asking for.

Morgan glances at the others, brow furrowed. "I'm… not certain and want to make sure I'm following. By ceasefire, you mean a halt to hostilities which we certainly want. But that is it? In exchange for knowledge and goods you have no other way of getting, we get nothing in return ourselves? Or is an exchange of knowledge and trading part of that?"

"Morgan," says Fiona softly, a note of caution in her voice before she addresses Oxfor. "We'll show you the medical techniques, search for depots and give you a third of what we find, but without consulting our mechanics at the dropship, we can't agree to a third of our material resources until we know what we can go without. We were dropped down on the planet with nothing. Our material resources are scant enough as it is." There's a pause, as she considers. "I don't suppose you'd be interested in more fruit leather?" She might be joking, but goes on to add, "For a cease fire to last for as long as it takes for you to sort out new arrangements with our skaiheda. We can also talk to him about a remnants from the dropships due to come down as a gesture of good faith."

Oxfor then raises a thick finger, and then one more so he is holding up two fingers total. "You have two weeks to get me the locations of the three depots, and we will handle salvaging what we find there. We get all of what we find, not a third." He corrects Fiona. Then he shakes his head, counter-offering, "I will accept half of the third of your dropship's raw materials promised now, and the last half when you have built other shelters." His arms cross now, looking at all three. "Your people will return to your camp, and my people will come to you to collect the materials and to learn your healing technique." He looks at Morgan. "You get to live, Morgan kom Skaikru. There will be no exchange of knowledge, or goods. I do not trust you, nor the people of the Ark. You are a disorganized pack of wolves, snarling and spitting at one another, biting your flanks and chasing your tails… There is no law, there is no order…" All that is on the table from Coesbur is ninety-two lives."

Oxfor then raises a thick finger, and then one more so he is holding up two fingers total. "You have two weeks to get me the locations of the three depots, and we will handle salvaging what we find there. We get all of what we find, not a third." He corrects Fiona. Then he shakes his head, counter-offering, "I will accept half of the third of your dropship's raw materials promised now, and the last half when you have built other shelters." His arms cross now, looking at all three. "Your people will return to your camp, and my people will come to you to collect the materials and to learn your healing technique." He looks at Morgan. "You get to live, Morgan kom Skaikru. There will be no exchange of knowledge, or goods. I do not trust you, nor the people of the Ark. You are a disorganized pack of wolves, snarling and spitting at one another, biting your flanks and chasing your tails… There is no law, there is no order…" He looks serious, and the good-natured bear is no more, replaced by something stoic and statuesque. "All that is on the table from Coesbur is ninety-two lives."

Quinn frowns at what Oxfor replies, glancing over towards Fiona and Morgan before turning back to Oxfor, "That's a very one sided agreement, don't you think? I don't think I'm the most skilled at this sort of thing, but even I can see that we are at a disadvantage by the terms."

"No Fi. You two can outvote me but lets be clear here." Morgan tells them. "He's using the threat of force to get a very good arrangement for his people while giving us nothing. That's his job, he's their leader and owes us nothing. In fact, he's demanding tribute." When Oxfor stands, so does Morgan. "Tell me Oxfor kom Trikru, you've admitted you don't have the authority to speak for the Trikru. Do you have the authority to declare war for them? Because if you start killing us, that's what you're doing. The Ark will consider you hostile enemies."

Fiona shakes her head, but not at Morgan. Rather, at Oxfor. She laces her fingers together and seems content to let Quinn and Morgan take the lead.

This time Oxfor leans forward, grinning with a full white smile — a grin that is not kind, not the least bit fearful. "Yes, I am, Morgan kom Skairku. Welcome to the Ground. It is not the kind place of the Sky, where you were given everything you needed, even if it meant you could never have more than you needed. It is not a place where you are put out into the cold of the stars to die… it is where my people will take one-thousand cuts to kill a man who has broken Heda law, and it will be my sword, my kruheda's sword, or even my heda's sword who will end that life if he has survives the first thousand." Then he begins to laugh, a deep rumbling noise that comes from the pit of his belly, at the prospects of war. "No… but you decide if you want to continue the war you declared on us, Morgan kom Skaikru." He fixes Morgan with a hard look. "You are not of the Ark… you said so yourself… I doubt that, if they indeed know you hold no love for them, that they will hold any love for you."

"I have given my offer to your camp," he gestures to the three. "I will now let you discuss." He begins to step away to the table, toward where his two warriors stand in their absolute silence.

"You drew first blood, Oxfor. This is on you." Morgan states and turns to look at Fi and Quinn as he walks away. "A dropship in the middle of their village full of Guards should take care of things. I might not want to rely on the Ark but if we have no choice…"

"Morgan," Fiona says again, but gently, more entreating. "Listen," she beckons him in so they can all lean in with their heads together. "He laid down options, but that doesn't mean they're the only ones." Her words are not meant to carry past the table, her voice lowered so only her fellow Delinquents can hear her. "We can make a counter-offer. And part of that is going to be taking surrendering any assets we've already gotten off the table. Our people aren't going to starve just for his tribute. We do have to offer him something. That's part of what the summit involves. I have an idea."

"Damn right we're not." Morgan growls then makes some undecipherable hand gesture. "Fine. You're not stupid, give it a shot. But don't forget how arrogant he is. He attacked, killed and captured our people then didn't think we'd retaliate. Or if we did, that we couldn't hurt them. Now he's thinking the same thing. If he attacks the camp, we won't be able to do anything and the Ark won't give a damn. Maybe Jaha doesn't about me but there's ninety others and he keeps going on and on about uniting. Letting us die wouldn't go over well even if he was willing to let it happen. Make sure this asshole sees that."

"I don't agree that all our anything needs to be surrendered. Just because they aren't attacking us doesn't mean that we don't need anything that we have, and that includes some of the things from the depots. I'm willing to share a portion, but not everything…and I'm not giving up the guns. I can assure you Kane wont let that happen, either." Quinn replies, her voice pitched more quietly, a frown curling her lips downwards.

Fiona looks between the two. "Here's what I suggest we put on the table: the medical technique discussed, half of whatever we find in any depot we come across until the rest of the dropships come down, and since we were planning on leaving it anyway, whatever's left of the dropship after we re-settle. It's not like we can take the structure with us, and dismantling it will be their problem."

Morgan listens to Fi's idea as he keeps an eye on the Grounders. "They do have the tool. Given time and effort, they could probably demolish it and there's more metal than they're likely to come across in years. Yeah, not like we can move the damn thing. I can agree to that."

"I agree that they can have the rest of the dropship once we resettle." Quinn agrees, crossing her arms over her chest as she thinks about the rest of the suggestions, "I can agree to the rest as well."

Oxfor still stands silently aside, arms crossed and looking across at the surrounding trees of what had once been Ball's Bluff. He does not seem to be listening or even engaging with what the three are saying, giving them promised privacy as he waits for them to discuss.

Fiona gives the pair a quick nod, and lifts her voice. "Oxfor. We have an offer we'd like to put on the table." She'll wait for him to return to the table before making the offer. "We'll provide you with the surgical technique training that Morgan offered. We'll alot half of what we find in any depot we come across to Coesbur until the rest of the dropships come down. And we'll leave the dropship to you and yours when we leave it after we move out to resettle. This, for a ceasefire until such time as Skaiheda engages into talks for the long term."

Morgan just stays quiet.

Oxfor folds his hands together once he is seated across the metal picnic table once more. He listens, and his brow lowers slightly. "Half of any depots," he repeats. "And you will invite my warriors and scouts to join you in raiding said depots," he counters simply.

Quinn's quiet for the most part, a brow arching upwards at Oxfor's counter to the matter of the depot, "A handful of warriors, and they have to agree to follow the direction of whichever one of us is leading the group, plus the items will be divided /equally/."

"Until we leave the dropship." Morgan puts in. "And they won't be getting any weapons if we find them. Which should be agreeable considering what you said about the Mountain Men."

Fiona nods in agreement with Quinn. "No more of yours than there are of ours on any given team." she says. "So if three of ours go, three of yours can go too." She looks to Quinn inquiringly; she considers Quinn to be the one to consult on matters martial.

Oxfor considers Quinn, and then Morgan, and then Fiona. Morgan gets a bit of a narrowed look as he mentions weapons, but he says nothing toward them. Not yet at least. He then nods steadily, and his arms fold once more. "Very well, Skaikru… you have a ceasefire with Coesbur." He holds out his hand to Fiona first, eyes unwavering.

Does she relax? Hell yeah she does. Quinn actually relaxes a little when Oxfor finally agrees to the terms.

Morgan nods slightly when Oxfor agrees and, like Quinn, also relaxes a bit.

Fiona rises from her seated position, keeping her unblinking eyes on Oxfor when she reaches out. Her smaller hand closes not around his hand, but his wrist, in the Gounder style. "We will return to the dropship with news of the cease fire. Mochoff."

"Mochoff," Oxfor agrees in a rumble. He offers his hand then to Quinn, and then to Morgan in turn to seal the deal as it were. "I will return to my village, and do the same."

Quinn reaches out to take the hand when it's offered to her, giving it a firm shake.

Morgan clasps Oxfor's arm in the same manner as Fi did when it's his turn. "May we enter your village to trade? I have been talking with Ginia about a tattoo. It is a skill mostly unknown to us."

Oxfor looks at Morgan, and he grunts slightly. "I will consider it." He still looks a bit uncertain about that, but he didn't dismiss it outright. Progress. Maybe.

Morgan nods, not pushing it right now. "Before we leave, I'll need to talk to one of your smiths. Makers." he corrects. "Suturing wounds needs a specially shaped needle to be most effective." Once that's done, he'll be more than ready to leave.

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