Day 088: Seeing Eye To Eye
Summary: Grey goes looking for Britt with an offer, and they discuss the differences between their people.
Date: 25 August 2016
Related: None directly.
Grey Britt 


Eastern Shore, Lake Audo
Surrounded by breathtaking mountains and rolling foothills, the Lake Audo— or known as Lake Arkadia the Skaikru — is a sprawling, crystalline body of water that joins the Potomac watershed. It is encompassed in low grasses and young alder trees. The forests start to thicken to the west, beyond the looming broken torus of the Skaikru's Alpha Compound on the opposite shore. The eastern shore is more grassy than forested, possessing more of a meadow in the mountain valley. The road that leads into the valley divides off, one fork leading to Camp Jaha, and the other this way toward the Trikru settlement of New Coesbur.
88 Days After Landing

With his Guard armor on, Grey is likely on-duty or just coming off it. Then again, he doesn't have his rifle with him either. Following the shore of the lake around to the south and taking sips off his canteen now and then, he greets the first Trikru scout he spots (probably not the first one who spots him) with a raised hand a cheerful, "Heya." How someone can mispronounce a word as simple as that beggars belief, but Grey manages it. Approaching, he makes some small-talk about the weather, and construction in both camps, and then gets to, "Is your, uh… 'gunna-heda' available? I got a suggestion. An offer. Somethin' like that."

The scout waves a hand back towards the village. "Think I saw her down by the lake." And he's right. Britt is there, sitting in the shade with her back up against a tree. She's just watching the lake, munching idly on an apple with a contemplative expression on her face. The look of someone with a lot on her mind.

Grey nods in thanks to the scout, searching around to find the flame-haired woman and then bending his steps in that direction. As he approaches, he once again lifts a hand and calls out, "Heya." His hands lift out from his sides a touch, making it clear that they're nowhere near a weapon. Once the woman acknowledges him, he adds, "I'm Grey. We talked outside the dropship camp a couple of times." In case she doesn't remember, obviously.

Britt looks up when she catches movement out of the corner of her eye, still alert despite her preoccupied thoughts. She arches an eyebrow at his introduction, and smirks. "Yes, and we fought the Reapers together," she mentions wryly. "I remember you well enough, Greh. Hello." Her tone is guarded but not openly hostile.

Grey blinks at the reminder, chuckling with embarrassment, "Oh, right." His left hand comes up to his lips, the former Delinquent nibbling at the nail of his index finger for a moment, "Uh… yeah… I had other things on my mind by then. Like 'ow, ow, ow.'" And 'Why did I get punched in the face,' but he's trying to be tactful. "So. I wanted to make an offer to you, as the gunna-heda of New C-Bur." C-Bur isn't going to catch on, Grey, let it go. "I don't know if the Trikru have binocs or spotter scopes, but I'm pretty sure you don't have Enn-Vee-Gees, uh, Night Vision Goggles. I wanted to offer to show your Scouts an' Warriors how to use 'em, if you wanted to learn."

Britt doesn't seem offended that he forgot, shrugging it off. "Sometimes it feels like a lifetime ago instead of a few weeks." She waves at the ground to invite him to sit, in part because he comes offering Stuff and in part so she doesn't have to crane her neck awkwardly up to look at him. "Night vision goggles," she echoes, perplexed. "I assume they do what the name sounds like."

Grey nods in response to her half-question, moving to sit down cross-legged in front of her despite the fact that it puts him down-hill from her so that he has to look up. Either he's very secure in himself, or (more likely) he's not politician enough to know the social disadvantage he's putting himself at. "Yeah, pretty much. They got downsides too — put everything in shades of green instead of color, take out some depth perception — but it can be real useful for scoutin' or shootin' at night. Maybe even huntin', I only tried a couple of times since we came down. And binocs or spotter scopes make far away things look real close, so you can see details."

Britt nods. "We have looking glasses." Perhaps uncommon, but presumably not unheard of. "Are these goggles made the same? Some kind of special glass?" she wonders, trying to imagine a looking glass that could boost the light.

Grey nods, "Good. Then I don't gotta worry about that." The question about the goggles causes him to frown, thinking hard for a moment, but he already tried to come up with a good explanation for this earlier… and mostly failed, "Uh… no. I don't know exactly how they work, I'm not a tech nerd, not really, but you've seen the screens? With videos on 'em? Or the dataslates?" He doesn't even wait for confirmation, not really, "It's sorta like that. They take in the dark view, run it through a computer inside, and boost the light up. They take batteries, so they're only good for as long as you can keep 'em recharged, but since they're one of the things I was talkin' about bein' useful to the Trikru from the start, I thought we should make good on it now that we got more from the Mountain."

There's a little bob of her head. She has seen one of the dataslates. But it's something he says at the end that catches her attention. "So you intend to trade us some of these things? And the batteries to make them go?"

"That's above my paygrade. I mean, more than I can do without permission. But I did get permission to show how they work." Grey's words come, for him, very carefully, "In case you wanted to trade for some of them in the future. Especially since a bunch of them came from Mount Weather." Where the people of Coesbur have claim to half of anything they show interest in.

Britt's lips curl a little. She starts to open her mouth, and for a moment it might seem as though she might be about to say 'no thanks'. But then she pauses, and shrugs. "I suppose there's no harm in seeing how they work. We could go on a night hunt - a few of your people, a few of ours. You show us the goggles, and in return you may take the spoils of the hunt."

Grey's lips press together tightly as she starts to demur, and then his shoulders loosen slightly as she accepts instead. The offer, however, causes him to shake his head, "Half and half on the spoils." His teeth flash very white indeed as he admits, "Since your people are still gonna have to show us the best places to find game. Some of us have a clue, but the Trikru are still a whole lot better at it than us."

"All right," Britt agrees easily enough. "Though I'm sure you must be developing some good hunters to keep feeding your people." It's half-statement, half-question, really. But rather than waiting for an answer, she says, "Thank you for your trade, Greh kom Skaikru. But I must ask you something, since you talk of things being useful to the Trikru. Why do you think our people don't use what yours call "modern" technology?" She draws her dagger and cuts a slice from the unchewed part of the apple, then holds it out to him in offer.

"Good enough for now. Gideon says winter's gonna be way worse." The question is not one Grey expected, and he has to think hard on it. Taking the slice of apple with a mangled, "Mochoff," thanks-ish, buys him some time. Swallowing the first bite of the sliver, he answers, "You don't need it, and it's a pain in the ass to keep it working. But I figure, if we're the ones maintaining it, why not make things a little easier while you can."

Grey shrugs a little helplessly, "Why do you figure you don't?"

Britt nods. "It is as you say. The thing is — right now it may be a pain in the ass, because you have the things you brought from your Sky Ark. But in time, it will become impossible. This is what history has shown us. Our history. My grandfather was alive when the bombs fell. He was just a little boy, but he still remembered how it was. He remembered how hard it was for the survivors, because they had forgotten the old ways. They didn't know how to live without their technology." She takes a bite of the apple herself, pausing while she chews and swallows. But then she ventures. "So you might be able to maintain it for us right now, but when you no longer can? It will not be good for us, in the end."

Grey nods his agreement, "Yup." The mention of Britt's grandfather being alive when the bombs fell draws his eyebrows up slightly, but he resists — barely — asking the gonaheda how old she is. Welcome to diplomacy. "That's why our tech nerds are talkin' about 'teching down.' I don't get all of what they mean, but I know that some things are gonna die and we won't be able to make more of them, so… and here's where I get kinda fuzzy on the theory… but they're gonna use the tech we've got to make older tech, stuff we can repair. So yeah… solar panels ain't gonna work for recharging batteries forever. But maybe we can get windmills workin', or somethin' involvin' steam, or… hell, I don't know any of the tech. But the way I figure it, if we've got tech that works now, we might as well use it now to make life easier, as long as it doesn't make us too weak, like you said, to survive later, when it breaks down."

Britt notices the arched eyebrow and tilts her head a little. "What?" she prompts. She munches a little more on the apple while she listens, and then nods. "That is fine for you, because you are already used to the technology. But for us, it is different. Take your guns, for example. I am sure the Trikru could learn to use them. They seem to shoot farther than a bow, and the way you can shoot many bullets at once is powerful. In the short run, we will probably gain some benefit. But think about what happens in another generation or two, when now we have a bunch of warriors who have only ever known guns and we no longer have the means to fix them or make more. They will be like your people, having to learn archery from scratch without the benefit of the elder archers to teach them." She waves a hand toward the lake. "Or take the water system your people are helping to build. Some of the Skaikru makers wish to use your so-lar panels. That's well and good, but what happens when they break? We have no means to make more. We cannot rely on your people to fix them for us - you may not even have the means by then, even if you wished to." She shrugs a little then, finally. "What makes you weak is not always obvious, especially if you only look to the near view."

Grey coughs a little and glances down at the prompting, "Uh… just that it was my… uh… great, great grands who came from the Earth That Was." And then he looks up again to listen to Britt's words, chewing slowly on the apple slice as he does. "Well, solar panels'd mean we could do it right away. If we've gotta use somethin' else, we've gotta figure out how to make it again. But yeah. I get your point, or at least, I think I do. Shock baton trainin' transferred over to a club a whole lot better'n I thought it would, but there ain't much like firin' a rifle except a crossbow. I saw some of your folks use those. Maybe that'll be the next step for us after we can't repair the rifles and pistols we got." He shifts where he sits a moment, "So… I gotta ask, and I really don't mean any offense by this," that's never a good start, "but a whole lotta Trikru seem real resistant to gettin' anything from us. Is that all because of the solid reasons you got, or do you think some of it's because they don't wanna admit that we got anything your people could use?"

Britt smirks a little at his response. "Well, I am old enough to be your mother, Greh, and my grandfather was blessed with a long life. Most of the survivors weren't so lucky." She nods once again to his words. "Yes, perhaps there are other reasons to use the so-lar panels. I am not a maker, so I leave such things to them. It was only an example. Crossbows are probably most similar to guns, but they are slow and clunky. I don't much care for them." Her nose wrinkles a bit at the thought. Another bite of the apple gives her a moment to consider his latter question thoughtfully before replying. "I don't think there is one answer. Some are like me, and don't wish our people to become reliant on technology that will ultimately fail us. Some are as you say, proud and stubborn. Some just don't like the way that so many Skaikru come around like they're going to 'save' us and teach us all these better ways of living with technology. Many Skaikru seem to forget that ours had technology once too. We did not lose it out of foolishness."

Grey probably shouldn't do it, but he goes ahead and teases Britt about her thoughts on the crossbow, "But you're also stubborn and set in your ways, yeah?" And then there's even more serious topics, and Grey with no apple left to distract him. Instead, he grabs onto his crossed ankles, maybe to keep his hands from bringing his nails up to his teeth. "Yeah. There are a bunch of idiots in the Skaikru." The young man snorts at that, then adds a little more warily, "Just like there are some idiots in the Trikru. But yeah, the way Dee tells it, you lost the tech 'cause you had more important things to do, like stayin' alike when it all went to shit. So here's the question, now that it ain't all shit, and there's more to life than just where your food's gonna come from tomorrow, why not use tech that will survive to make life easier? 'Cause we damn sure need help from the Trikru, and it sucks ass needin' help when the other people aren't open to you helpin' them in return. Feels like beggin', and it pisses people off."

Britt arches an eyebrow. "I'm stubborn and set in my ways because I have tried a crossbow and decided a bow is better?" It's not really clear whether she's offended by his teasing, but she didn't smile. She also didn't snarl or anything, so it's all relative. She does nod, at least, when he says that some Trikru are idiots, then ventures, "You say it isn't all shit now, but nor are things easy. Coesbur is one bad harvest away from starving. If it weren't for the other villages sending us grain this winter, we'd be fucked. We've had wars off and on for my whole life. Perhaps things will be easier now, with the Mountain gone, but I would not lay odds on there being peace forever. History has taught us that, too, before the bombs and since." She shrugs a little. "I am not saying the Skaikru have nothing to offer us. Honestly I don't know what technology might last that we don't already have. But precious few of you are willing to admit that you need anything from us either."

Grey totally shouldn't have gone for the teasing, and by the little wince he gives, he knows it. Too late now, says his expression. His eyebrows rise slightly at the description of the Trikru situation, "Huh. Didn't know it was that close. Figured you'd have more food stores from Old Coesbur." Evidently, he does not understand harvest seasons yet, but at least he understands that he doesn't understand, grunting a little, "More things I gotta learn," and he nods forward, "…from the Trikru." The last point, however, is one he agrees on, "Yup. Like I said, a whole lotta proud, pissed off people who don't understand how screwed they are if they don't learn from the people who know how to survive down here, and who really don't wanna beg. So who are the biggest idiots you've had to deal with? Maybe I can smack some sense into 'em."

"Some of the stores were damaged," Britt explains. "And some of the excess harvest each year goes to Polis instead of to the stores, because they have a lot of people and not enough farms." She waves a hand, realizing she's probably going into more detail than he cares to hear about. "I grew up on a farm," she explains of her ramblings. "Anyway, I think there are a lot of proud, pissed off people on both sides. And my people are not exactly keen to go out of their way to be helpful after they were shamed for taking your side against Indra." A frown there. "And though I would not wish it, there is still a specter of war if Thripoda is not settled." His question about smacking sense into people earns a brief smirk. "While I appreciate the sentiment, I think it is not so simple. It is a far shorter list to tell the Skaikru I haven't had any trouble with. Leo. You. Kai's mother." The smirk then fades. "Even Feyona now… she seems to think so ill of us, and I thought…" Britt stops herself then, a sad frown taking hold, then she shrugs.

Grey shrugs at her explanation, "I grew up watching football. I talk a hell of a lot more about that, and it ain't anywhere as useful. Just awesome." He nods at the description of the situation, "Yeah well, I got a real good reason to want peace between the Trikru and the Skaikru, besides not starvin' my ass off. I want to make sure Dee can still talk to the people she grew up with, and that she doesn't get any more suspicion from assholes in camp just 'cause of where she grew up." The mention of Fiona causes him to frown though, "Huh. Fi's been in favor of talkin' with the Trikru since… uh… since your people captured ours. Maybe she's just frustrated by how much shit has been shoveled our way — not just by your people, but by the rest of the One Hundred too. I'll talk to her."

"I would like to see your football sometime. I heard about baseball once, but I have not seen that either," Britt says off-hand. And then it suddenly clicks who Dee is, and she nods. "It would be the hardest for people with family on both sides, but I think there are thankfully few who honestly want a war."

Grey nods his agreement, his fingers twitching against his ankles to resist going off on both football and baseball and the inherent superiority of football, "Tell you what. Come by Camp some time, and I'll bring out a dataslate with some highlights and then one of the best games we got a copy of." Looking past her to where New Coesbur is taking shape, he grunts, "I keep meaning to get over there to help, but Dee and me are puttin' up our own house, and… uh… neither of us is really a carpenter. I'll make it out there as soon as I can though." He starts to push himself to his feet, "And maybe some time early next week for the huntin' trip?"

Britt gives a curious peer at the idea of watching football on the dataslate. "Oh, I thought you meant playing. I do not like to go into the Skaikru camp, since the last time. But if you come here, and wish to show something on your screen, I will watch." This is clearly a bit of a foreign concept to her. She follows his glance toward the village. "Yes, I am little use over there at the moment. So I hunt, mostly. Next week is fine, yes."

Grey nods, "Oh, yeah… I was suggestin' outside the camp. I figure I gotta show Trikru the game, before they're ready to play it." He considers a moment, then nods, "I think I can get a dataslate out here. They're crackin' down on them pretty hard, since they're gonna get real scarce real fast." And then he's up on his feet, "May we meet again, Britt kom Trikru." It has the sound of a benediction, rather than any expectation that they won't actually meet again.

Britt smirks, "You could show us by doing," she points out mildly. "But yes, I am curious to see how you watch things. Leo had spoken of it. Farewell, Greh kom Skaikru."

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