Day 007: Romance or Bromance
Summary: Grey and Max discuss Quinn and other possible catastrophes.
Date: 9 May 2016
Related: Bubble Bubble Boils and Trouble and the We Are Grounders plotline.
Grey Max 


Somewhere in camp
It's chaos, man.
Early, early 7 Days After Landing

Grey looks like the walking dead. The mask of blood over the left side of his face and the cut on his left hip don't help, but there are worse wounded. No, it's pure exhaustion that makes him look so bleak. Still, he's on his feet, if only barely, because there are things to do. He's seen someone started on a grave for Joe, he's seen a watch posted, he's seen one of the former prisoners, he's had a political discussion about the future of the camp, and he's been yelled at by two women. That's tiring on top of running a dozen miles or more miles, fighting two battles, and dragging several bodies off into the woods. But there's still more to do. Like find Max. Potentially awkward conversations are always best to have when one is mostly braindead from fatigue, right? It's taken some asking around, but eventually he finds where the other teen is settled, calling quietly, "Hey. Max. It's Grey. Got a minute?"

Max doesn't look so hot himself. His leg is a mess, his abdomen and arm are slashed, and the patchwork job he did on himself to be able to then go and help the other wounded on the field is starting to come apart, but he looks entirely too tired to care at the moment. With his head leaning back against the wall, he sits on the floor, taking a few minutes to just breathe between looking after everyone else. When Grey approaches, he lifts a hand and says, "Sure. It'll give me an excuse not to get up. Unless you need me to get up.."

Grey waves off the request, "No… no." The so-called-stone-cold-killer hesitates then, his left hand coming up to his mouth so that he can bite at the nail of his pinky a moment. He's only quiet for a bit though before he crouches down opposite the other young man, only to wince at the pull at his hip and drop down to kneel there instead. "I… uh… I wanted to thank you for makin' sure Q got back okay." He looks down at the deck plating between them, "How you doin', by the way? How's the… the leg, right?"

"Leg's not great, but it'll heal. Won't be tackling any Grounders for a bit, but Quinn's back.. and the others. So.. hopefully won't have to for a little bit," Max says with a wan sort of wry twist to his lips. "Careful.." he comments when Grey winces, because regardless of what stupidity he does with his own injuries, he apparently cares about what happens to others.

Grey pokes at the skin alongside of the cut to his hip, "Eh. It's not bad. Real shallow. Just stings like a bitch. I'll clean it and the head out in a minute, make sure they don't get infected." Evidently he knows that much about first aid. His hand is on its way back up to his mouth when he notices, forces it down to rest on his thigh, and mans up, "So. About Q. I know you and she are tight. But how tight? You looking to make a move there? You already made one?"

Max nods, seeming satisfied with that response, at least enough not to worry too much about Grey being able to take care of himself. The questions, when they come, however, are met with a sort of stare for a few very long moments. Max doesn't do a lot of talking about himself on a good day, and those sort of personal questions weren't really what he was expecting. His mouth opens and then closes again. Then finally he says, "I'd have died for that girl."

Grey nods his head, "Yeah. I noticed that. Almost did, too. Twice." His fingers work against one another as he tries to keep from chewing on his nails. For now, he succeeds. Apparently, this sort of talk isn't any easier for him. "Look, me and Q, we talked. Didn't do nothin', didn't decide nothin'. I didn't know how you felt, or I wouldn't have even said anything." A flash of pain, not physical, flashes across his features, and he grimaces, looking away, "I ain't the kind of guy who goes poking around where someone else is already workin' on a good thing." Finally, he looks back to Max, "And I saw how you reacted. How I wanted to react. So give it to me straight."

There's a long pause as Max just studies Grey's features, that flash, the grimace. He frowns slightly and shakes his head, "Look.. if you guys talked.. then.. " He trails off and lets his head rest back against the wall of the ship, staring up at the metal and bolts holding the ceiling together. "We've never.. so if you guys are… I'm just glad she made it back okay." He blinks twice, three times and focuses hard on that ceiling. "And that you did too, for that matter." He then begins to try and push himself back up. "Thanks for telling me."

Grey shakes his head, "No, man." The ex-C leans forward as Max starts to get up, moving to try to put a hand on the other man's shoulder to keep him from getting up. It's not a hard gesture, nor is his voice hard. Really, it's just… tired. "That's not what I'm sayin'. Q and me, we didn't decide anything. Just talked about 'maybe.'" Shaking his head hard, he grimaces, "Look. I'm not tryin' to treat Q like some cheerleader trophy that two guys can decide which one gets her. She'd kick my balls up my throat. But I'm tellin' you, if you want her, and she wants you, I ain't gonna get in the way."

Max isn't particularly hard to keep down at the moment. His balance isn't great and that leg got shot by an arrow and cleaved by an Axe. There's a whole world of hurt going on there, so when the hand touches his shoulder he stops. "I'm not going to put her in the middle of anything either. If you guys talked, and you've got something going there, maybe, then I'm not going to get in the way either." He reaches out with his own hand then and gives Grey's shoulder a clasp. "I like you. If it's gotta be anyone.. But yeah, it's not up to either of us. She'll do what she wants." His smile twists wryly again, "And kick the ass of anyone who might think otherwise."

Grey lets out a little breath at Max's response, looking more than a touch relieved. "So. We let her decide who she wants." The clasp on his shoulder draws a little nod, "You're good people, Max. At least, from what I can tell. But I was never a very good judge of character anyhow." Drawing in a little breath, he lets it out with a hiss, "One more part to this. Whoever she chooses, the other guy's still there for her. As a friend. And whoever she chooses doesn't rub it in his face. I already lost one friend over this whole mess already. I don't need to lose another."

He shrugs his shoulders a bit and says, "It's all relative. Who we are. Who we were. Who we'll end up being." He nods then and says, "Nah. Nobody's going to lose anybody. We need what friends we've got." Max then flops back down, settling with a groan back against the wall. "Anyway, better to know what's going on than not. Thanks for being honest. That means something."

Grey snorts good-naturedly at the thanks, "Hey, I'm a dick, but at least I'm an honest dick." The same cannot be said for either of his late parents. Settling back onto his heels again, he lets out a breath and chooses a less perilous subject, "So. You think the Grounders'll attack? We scattered the bodies, hopin' they'd figure they just didn't find the bodies they didn't find, but who knows."

"Pretty sure they will. They jumped us for crossing a river. No attempt to talk it out or say Hey, stop messing with our piles of rocks. Just.. arrows and kidnapping," Max points out with a shake of his head. "Retaliation's been had. When that horse gets back without a rider, they'll start looking. They don't seem the sort to just let bygones be bygones, you know?" He reaches a hand up and runs it through his hair, pushing it back from his face, dried blood still in his fingernails, in the creases of his knuckles, from bandaging up the injured and probably from the whack or two he took at their Chief, too. "Anyone talk to the prisoners yet?"

"I ain't had the time yet." Grey does not seem incredibly encouraged by the thought. "I put Miles and Katie up there with them." Which means he asked the two 'reliable' teens to do it, and they agreed to his request. "So how do you figure this plays out? Unless we get something from the prisoners fast, before they decide to hit us, I don't know that diplomacy works, no matter how much we want it to."

"I dunno, man.. diplomacy, not really my forte," Max admits with a shake of his head. "I'd say find the sweet talker among us and put'm on them to play good cadet quick. See what we can get out of them, or what we can offer them to make it stop. In the meantime, I guess hunker down, try and figure out the best defensible location. Gotta figure they could track us back here. But, I mean.. you've seen me. Plan making, not so much my strong suit either." He tends to react on gut instinct and passion, not really much of a planner.

Grey snorts softly, "You and me both." He pauses, then shrugs, "On both of those points." He lets out a breath, "Yeah. If they come after us hard, we really got two options: hunker down behind the walls or in the dropship, and run. I don't think there's anyone dumb enough here to think they can take them in a straight-up fight, if they even go for that. I mean, the two times they've chosen the fight, it's been from ambush. What I worry about is a siege. We'd starve for sure. We need a way to store meat and greens."

"Could scatter in small groups, with a couple of folks who can heal, hunt, tinker, etc.. look for other places to set up. Might lose some. Might save some. Rather than bunkering down here and yeah.. all of us trapped in one spot with no food," Max considers, not sure if that's a good plan or not from the look of the furrow in his brow as he thinks it over. "But then.. you figure, they have to know the terrain better than us. But they'd also have to split up to look for us… or take their time finding each group."

Grey shakes his head slightly, "Even I paid enough attention to know you don't split a weaker force. Unless you can get more force at the critical point." That has him thinking for a moment, a frown gathering over his features. "I wonder if we could…" And then he shakes his head, "No. I promised Princess Tesla that we'd try diplomacy next." He rubs his temples with his palms, "Okay. So I guess it comes down to getting something useful from the prisoners before we all get killed. Since I don't think we're gonna be able to get past them to Mount Weather and get whatever was stored there."

"Then we should start gearing up here, if we're not splitting, as much as we can. Make sure everyone has something sharp and pointy and we get that wall built up as much as we can. I mean, they've got horses.. they could probably jump them, but we can slow them down at least, maybe." Max has no real idea. He's just spitting out whatever comes to mind, regardless of how shit an idea it might be at this point to see if anything sticks to the wall. "Well.. we know for sure how NOT trying diplomacy is going to end. So, may as well give it a shot and see if we get a different result, right?"

Another snort rises from Grey's nose, and he smirks a little as he shakes his head, "Have you seen Cole's plans for the wall? I think he's planning to reinvent concrete and go up thirty or forty feet. If we get even a quarter of what he wants, the horses won't be able to jump anywhere near it." Sighing wearily, he nods, "Yeah. Diplomacy. And if that's lookin' bad, another trip to Mount Weather. Smaller, sneakier. Go round-about. If there are guns there, havin' 'em here could be absolutely life or death." Shrugging a little, he adds, "So… uh… that's all I came to talk about. I should check in on Devin and Ruth." There's a beat pause, and he shrugs, "And Q."

"Nope," Max says. He's been a bit occupied with other projects. "But can he get a thirty foot wall up in a day or two? We don't know how much time we've got before they start trying to follow the trail back." He nods then and says, "Smaller and sneakier might be the way to go." He sighs, "Not that I'm sneaking anywhere for at least another few days. Cameron's good at sneaking, though." Taking a deep breath and then letting it out in a slow whoosh he says, "Yeah, me too. Let me know if there's anything I can do. If I think of some other random crap idea, I'll let you know."

Grey shakes his head, "Naw. But I think there's enough people scared now that there'll be plenty of labor. I don't care about a thirty-foot wall, just something that'll force 'em to come in through a gate. Or try to climb over. Doesn't matter how crap you are with a weapon, you can smack fingers as they reach over a wall." He nods at the suggestion, "Cameron and Silas, but Silas'll take some healin' up from what I saw. Couple more." Hesitating a moment, he reaches out to clasp the other man's hand, "Likewise. Glad you made it."

Max doesn't hesitate. He reaches back and clasps Grey's hand firmly for a moment or two and then releases it, "Yeah, you too." And he does genuinely mean it.

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