Day 013: Rifles And Summits
Summary: Fiona and Grey talk about strategy for the upcoming summit.
Date: 22 May 2016
Related: Leads to The Price of Peace.
Grey Fiona 

Secondary Passenger Hold, The Dropship
The top level of the dropship was once the secondary passenger cabin, hosting rows of seats, may against the dark gray walls. Emptied now of its seats, and stripped to bare metal, this level is much smaller and closer than the ones below. It has been refitted into The Box — the delinquent camp's makeshift lockup. The lighting here is dim, casting deep shadows in the far corners of the room. Some of the harness straps have been roughly knotted together to create shackles so that prisoners can be bound and fettered to the walls.
13 Days After Landing

Up here, the lights are dim enough that they don't hurt Grey's eyes, and he's pushed up the bandages around his head so that they only protect the actual wound at the back of his head. The dim light also hides the bruising around his nose and eyes, and the split lip. He sits cross-legged on the floor, a partially-disassembled assault rifle spread out before him. He's got an old shirt, and is cleaning various parts free of the cloying gunk that they were stored in. Since the blow-up with the visiting Grounders and Mimi, he's been avoiding the outside, at least for a bit. Hearing that Fiona was back in the camp, he asked someone to see if they'd see if she wanted to talk, and let the guard at the foot of the ladder know she might be coming up.

At some point while he's working on the guns, the hatch will open, and Fiona comes climbing up. "Hey." she greets affably once at the top of the ladder. Her eyes go wide as saucers - she's heard about the guns, but seeing them makes it really real. Scrambling up onto the floor, she closes the hatch, remarking, "Heard you wanted to talk. Fey told me about the guns. Not that I didn't believe him, but seeing them is totally different."

Grey looks up from his work, offering a little smile, "Fiona." There are twenty or so rifles stacked up well away from the hatch, all black plastic and metal menace. There is also an olive-drab plastic container holding several inches deep of loose rounds, scattered in with metal magazines. Grey's hands resume their confident, smooth motion in cleaning the weapon, a strange sort of contentment settled over the ex-Cadet. "Yeah. Just wanted to… you know… talk… before the summit. I wanted to talk to Morgan too, but he hasn't been back, least not that I heard."

"No, he's still at Coesbur with Cam." She eyes the guns like they're snakes that might bite her, moving to take a seat across from Grey on the floor. "I'm glad you've got these locked down. Sure as shit we've got some reactionary people in camp."

Grey nods slowly, "Not as locked down as I like. Q and Kai have rifles still. I was… a little out of it and couldn't insist. Even if they'd've listened." He keeps working to clean the gunk off the inner workings of the rifle he's cleaning, "They're not safe to be fired until they're clean. And I don't think we should let the Grounders know about 'em unless we have to."

Fiona's brows lift. "Quinn knows she can't take it when we go to the summit, right? It's supposed to be no weapons." That definitely puts her on edge. "It's definitely none of their business. I imagine it would only make the situation worse. Not that it's too bad right now, but you know what I mean."

Shrugging slightly, Grey eventually nods, "I think so. I'm not sure. Haven't had a chance to talk to her. I've been up here most of the afternoon after Mimi givin' me a splittin' headache this morning." Groaning softly and rubbing at his temple with the back of his hand, he adds, "That's another thing. You might have to assure the steheda that we don't got any intention of buildin' missiles. She might've babbled something about nukes and radioactive missiles to a couple of the Grounders who came here."

Fiona makes a face at that, rubbing at her cheek. "God. Grey, you know that all the work me and Morgan and Quinn do at the summit will mean absolutely nothing if the kids here can't keep it together? If people are running their mouths and they see us squabbling like spoiled kids, they won't deal with us, or worse, consider us vermin they need to exterminate."

One part is set aside, and Grey picks up the receiver and barrel, taking up a twig with a cloth on the end and pushing the cloth down the barrel and pulling it back, time and again, smooth strokes. "They can't keep it together, Fiona. Everyone wants to run their mouths off. I can't even imagine the shit Niner got into up in Coesbur. That's why the rifles are a trump card. If you're losin' it, and they're seein' us as squishable…" One hand pats the butt of the rifle, and he shrugs again, "But I wanted to talk about Morgan. If he badmouths the Arkers, even Jaha and the Council, he could start a war when the Arkers come down. Which he doesn't give a shit about because he's going to run off as soon as they do, but I'd rather not have it happen."

"We're going to have a strategy session when I get back and have Quinn along with me." Fiona promises. "We'll make sure we all have the same agenda. There's no way to absolutely control whatever comes out of anyone else's mouth, but I'm pretty sure we're going to put a continuation of cessation of hostilities on the table and verify landing sites for the rest of the dropships for a start."

Grey nods slowly, a weary look passing across his features. "That's good. I just… I get not wanting to back to the Ark, but we aren't doin' that. The Arkers are comin' here, and things're gonna change. They have to. And I don't want all those people to get screwed dry because Morgan can't keep his trap shut about Jaha or the Council." He sets down the parts of the rifle, "I'd be a lot less freaked out right now if it was Cookie going instead of him. Or if I was goin' myself. But I screwed that up."

"One of the things I plan to clarify is who we're speaking for, the Ark, or just the Hundred. We honestly can't really speak for the Ark, except to clear those landing zones and create an opportunity for representation from the Ark to meet with Trikru without confusion that leads to bloodshed." Fiona is still eyeing those guns dubiously. "When it comes down to it, there are three probable outcomes, and all three of them could happen. People want to stay part of whatever community the Ark forms once people are on the ground, people will want to try and be absorbed into Trikru, or people will want to start over completely and want to form their own community fresh from the start."

Grey flinches a little at that response, "I think that's a mistake, but I dunno. If you're just talkin' for us… we've got two things to offer them: jack and shit." He relents a little, adding, "Some knowledge, but the Arkers are gonna have more. I mean, they've got all the folks who taught us. And they'll have the tech. Whatever machines they bring down from Mecha and Factory Stations…" He lets out a little breath, then chuckles dryly, "I mean… don't get me wrong, you say you're talkin' for just the One Hundred, you're screwin' the people who want to jump ship and abandon the rest of us, and I'm kinda fine with that. But I think it's a mistake."

"And what happens if we claim to speak for the Ark, and Jaha refuses to honor the agreements we make?" Fiona asks, mouth pressing in a thin line. "Maybe I should get him on the comm before we speak to them."

Grey nods, "I don't know why we're not just bringing Oxfor here to talk to him." Once more, he reaches forward for parts of the rifle, wincing as his back pulls with the motion. "Except Morgan would throw a fit. And I don't think Quinn'd like it either." He glances up from behind the pushed-up bandage around his brow, "And I don't know about you. But it'd be smarter. Yeah, we're the boots on the ground, but unless he agrees to back whatever we come up with, we've got nothin' to give the Trikru."

"Do you think there's time to get him on the comms?" Fiona asks. "More to the point, do you think we can do it quietly?"

Grey considers that for a long moment, the paired questions, "Hell if I know about the first one. The second… well, it's a tent. I mean, nothin's really private in there, but most people have been good about not listening in." A little frown touches his brows, "Hell, I don't even know what time it is up there. He might be asleep."

"What do you think is more important, having confirmation that we know we speak with authority from the Ark, or Jaha not losing his beauty sleep?" Fiona counters. "I've got a limited amount of time. The reason we don't just have Oxfor speak to him over the comm is because that's not how they do things. We're trying to prove we respect their ways, and I don't think we do that very well if we insist on technology they're not accustomed to." Fiona's mouth purses. "Do you think this is important enough to try?"

Grey finishes cleaning the last part of the assault rifle, setting down the cloth and then starting to snap pieces together, "I think that we're all in over our heads, and if Oxfor ever really recognizes that, there's no reason for him to talk to us anymore when he can just wait and talk to Jaha, or the Council, or whatever idiotic idea people are trying to convince the Arkers to go along with today."

"Given. But that doesn't really answer the question." Fiona rises to her feet. "We're trying, Grey. That's all we can do. We have to work with what we've got. I am piss in my pants terrified that this will come down to a slaughter, so I'm going to do whatever I can to keep it from being that way. And while maybe you're not scared, I know you want to avoid bloodshed too. If the only thing we can do is convince him to cease hostilities until the Ark comes down and he can speak to Jaha personally, that may be a thing, but we already have the problem of people not recognizing his authority. I'm not even sure I want to. But we need to keep our asses covered, and we need to know the full scale of our authority. I'm going to try and get him hailed. You want to come with me?"

Grey is stymied for a moment in placing one part of the rifle, trying it this way and that, then gets it right and slides home the receiver with an ominous click, holding the cleaned and put-together rifle in his hands, "It won't be a slaughter if it comes to war. At least not a one-sided one." Still, even the ex-C doesn't sound happy about that prospect. "But anyone who tells you they ain't scared is lying or insane. I'm neither." The offer to accompany her causes him to glance aside a moment. "I don't want him to see how bad we've let the Camp get. I told you in C-bur that I trusted you to talk for all of us. That hasn't changed."

Fiona nods at that. Probably for the first time, she lets some of her own self-doubt rest apparently on her face. Funny that it's Grey of all people that she allows to see it. "Anything else on your plate before I go get the big man on the comm?"

Grey hesitates, then shades his head, "Just don't forget you're speakin' for all of us, not just yourselves. But you got this, Fiona. You're on top of things." And then he looks quickly down at the rifle in his hands, then slowly sets it down.

Fiona smiles at that. "Thank you." she says. Usually she carries her confidence well, but sometimes she needs to hear it. "If I don't see you again before I leave…I'll see you after the summit. Take care of everyone."

Grey snorts softly at the request, "I'll have to be able to look at bright light first." He waves off the self-deprecating humor, "I always will, Fi. Good luck."

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