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27 February 2008 @ 08:06 pm
BSG ficlet - Friends  
Here is a short ficlet I wrote for the Adama Realm's birthday challenge - we had a list of prompts to choose from about Adama birthdays, and I picked Lee's birthday from Kara's perspective.  Thought I might as well post it here too, so the result is below.

 

Kara had forgotten how much she hated rain.  Especially this kind of fine rain that lashed against her face like needles and seemed to find its way through every seam in her clothes.  As she struggled up yet another steep hill, she swore under her breath.

Planet of the gods, my ass.

It almost made her miss the harsh yellow heat of Caprica.

Almost.

She reached the crest of the hill with a sigh of relief, and allowed herself to just stand still for a moment.

“Catching your breath, Starbuck?”

Kara quickly plastered a smirk on her face.  “Just enjoying the view, Apollo.”

“Really?”  An answering smirk appeared on Lee’s face as he walked towards her.  “There’s nothing like a view of thick cloud.”

Damn.  Looking around, Kara realised he was right.  Thick cloud surrounded them, covering most of the neighbouring hills. 

He’d caught her out, but she wasn’t about to admit it.  “So much for using the view to work out our position,” she said hurriedly.  “What do we do now?”

“Take the President’s best guess and keep going.  But we’re going to have a short rest break first.  So let’s get out of this frakking rain.”  Lee headed for the shelter of a nearby tree, and Kara followed.

The tree wasn’t very large, but it provided a little shelter from the rain, and there was even a dry patch of ground.  Kara took off her pack and flung herself down on it, leaning back against the trunk.

Lee dropped down next to her and she blinked, disconcerted.  “What are you doing?”

“Sitting,” said Lee drily, raising his eyebrows.  “That okay with you?”

“I just thought you’d be running back to the President.  You’ve barely left her side all day.”

Her tone came out harsher than she’d meant.  Lee blinked, then frowned, and then obviously decided not to pursue it.

“If you’re going to follow that up with some innuendo, don’t bother,” he said, in a determinedly light tone.  “Zarek and his cronies have already beaten you to it.”

“I didn’t mean-” Kara broke off, frustrated.  What had she meant? “Just forget it, okay.”  She turned away from him, rummaging in her pack for a ration bar and trying to work it out.  She’d just wanted to needle him, she decided, maybe annoy him enough to go and sit somewhere else so she didn’t have to deal with him.

She still felt awkward around him, despite their talk in the Astral Queen’s locker room the day before.  They’d ended up joking, but she still wasn’t sure their quarrel over Baltar was completely healed.  And then there was the kiss he’d given her…she still wasn’t quite sure what to make of that.  Or that slip in the locker room when he’d said he loved her.  Was it really only as a friend, or was it something more?  And if it was something more, did she really want to pursue it?  Maybe the whole Baltar fiasco just proved that she and Lee were better off as friends.  If they were still friends.

She bit into her ration bar, watching the rest of their party haul themselves to the top of the hill.  She half hoped someone would come and sit with them, and even tried to catch Helo’s eye and beckon him over, but he was too busy sticking as close to Sharon as her guards would allow.

No-one joined them, and her dilemma remained.  She sneaked a glance at Lee; he was eating a ration bar of his own and pointedly looking in the other direction.  She knew what he that meant; he was saying it was her turn.  He’d made the effort yesterday in the locker room, and now it was up to her to return it, to show that she also wanted to repair their friendship.

And she did, she admitted to herself.  She didn’t know exactly what was going on between her and Lee, but she didn’t want to lose his friendship.  She’d missed him acutely on Caprica, felt the lack of his support.  If he’d been there to back her up…

But if they were going to be friends again, she had to say something.  Fortunately, something she had realised on the shuttle trip down had given her the perfect conversational icebreaker.

“Happy Birthday, Lee.”

“What?”  Lee blinked at her in confusion.  She could see him mentally calculating the date as his eyes widened.  “Gods, you’re right.  I’d completely forgotten.”

“Hardly surprising, with all that’s been going on.”  Kara smiled hesitantly.  “I just happened to spot the date on the shuttle monitors.”

Lee was still looking surprised.  “I didn’t think you even knew when my birthday was.”

“After dating Zak?  Are you kidding?”  Memories sprang to life and Kara found herself grinning.  “Every year he’d spend a month beforehand agonising over what to get you.”

“Did he really?” said Lee sceptically.  “Strange then how every year I got a bottle of ambrosia and a novelty beer mug.”

“I didn’t say all the agonising had a successful result.”  Kara chuckled.  “You’re just a difficult frakker to buy for.”

“No, I’m not.”

“Yes, you are.  No point buying you replacement kit, you never lost anything.  No hobbies-”

“I have hobbies! “ Lee protested.  Reading, cooking-”  He caught sight of her expression and stopped, grinning.  “And now I’m trying to picture Zak trying to buy me a present relating to either of those.  I don’t think he ever set foot in a bookshop once he left school, and as for cooking-”

“Burning toast was the limit of his abilities.”  Kara smiled fondly, remembering several culinary disasters.  It didn’t hurt so much now to remember Zak, since she had confessed her part in his death to Lee and the Old Man.  She could finally talk about him without guilt choking her. 

Lee shrugged.  “Oh well.  They do say it’s the thought that counts.”

“They do.  And you can never have too many novelty beer mugs.”

“Unless you’re serving on a battlestar.  They took up half my locker.”  Lee smiled sadly.  “I don’t miss most of my stuff, but I wish – I don’t have anything Zak gave me, not now.”

Kara didn’t know what to say.  She looked down at the ring on her thumb, wondering how she’d feel if she lost it.  She searched for something comforting to say, but Lee got to his feet before she came up with anything.  “Looks like it’s time to move on.  I’d better go and check on the President.”

Kara watched him go, frowning thoughtfully.

 

****

 

That night, she waited until she caught Lee alone by one of the campfires and presented him with a bundle wrapped in a blanket.

“Just a little something for the birthday boy,” she said, trying not to show how uncertain she felt.  “Well, not the blanket.  I want that back.  It’s cold down here.”

Lee rolled his eyes.  “Kara, you shouldn’t have,” he said sarcastically.  He looked at the bundle with slight suspicion.  “It’s not loaded, is it?”

“Oh, for the gods’ sake!  Why did I even bother-” Kara made to snatch her offering back, but Lee pulled it towards him.

“Sorry, sorry.  I’m sure I’ll like it, whatever it is.”  He unwrapped the blanket to reveal one of the plastic mugs they had brought from the Astral Queen.

“A mug?”  Blue eyes stared at her, totally confused.  “Kara, they did issue me with one of my own-”

“Look closer, you idiot.”  Kara grabbed the mug from his hand and twisted it so the firelight lit up the message she had scratched on one side.

“ ‘Greetings from cloudy Kobol’,” read Lee, a grin spreading across his face with every word.

“I thought you might like to start a new collection,” said Kara.  He was looking at her in a way that made her feel suddenly awkward.  “Fill up your locker.”

“Kara-”  The tone of Lee’s voice made her even more uncomfortable and she looked away, suddenly unable to meet his eyes.  “I – it’s – thanks.  It’s a great present.”

Kara steeled herself to look at him, and what she saw in his face made her swallow hard.  “No problem,” she said, trying to sound dismissive, pass it off.  “You’d just better get me something just as good for my birthday.”

Lee returned her smile.  “Count on it.” 

There was something in his smile that said he saw right through her attempt at casualness, and oddly enough, it made Kara relax.  Because it told her that they were going to be okay.  No matter what had happened since Colonial Day, she and Lee were still friends.  And in that moment she was certain that whatever happened in the future, they always would be.

 

Tags:
 
 
 
ez_as_piez_as_pi on February 27th, 2008 08:21 pm (UTC)
How sweet and awkward and so pilots! Lovely...
suffolkgirlsuffolkgirl on February 28th, 2008 09:03 pm (UTC)
It was nice going back to those S2 pilots, less complicated times! I know you've posted at least one fic I have yet to read, hoping to get the chance this weekend.
zommbie1: Season 4 Kara Lee goodnesszommbie1 on February 27th, 2008 08:41 pm (UTC)
Yay you are writing again!

This was such a sweet instalment. Loved it.
suffolkgirlsuffolkgirl on February 28th, 2008 09:04 pm (UTC)
Yes, writing again, though only short stuff. Am finally getting some unbroken nights sleep, which helps. :) Glad you liked this little ficlet.
Silja: obj - balloonssiljamus on February 27th, 2008 09:18 pm (UTC)
Hee, I'm beginning to sense a theme today.....:D

This was really nice, with a lovely friendship-feel to it and I'm just a little bit in love with the idea of the mug. "Greetings from cloudy Kobol", indeed *g*
suffolkgirlsuffolkgirl on February 28th, 2008 09:07 pm (UTC)
Yes, I'd just posted this and then saw your birthday post - it's a nice coincidence! :)
Glad you liked the mug joke - especially as I thought of that joke first and then wrote the rest around it.
something clever: jon stewartshah_of_blah on February 27th, 2008 09:19 pm (UTC)
Oh my god that is ridiculously lovely.
suffolkgirlsuffolkgirl on February 28th, 2008 09:08 pm (UTC)
Thank you, I'm glad you enjoyed it.
Mistress Spinmlsky on February 27th, 2008 10:56 pm (UTC)
Ahh...I love to revisit pilots in the past and this is a wonderful read.

Nicely done!
suffolkgirlsuffolkgirl on February 28th, 2008 09:08 pm (UTC)
Thanks, it's always nice to read (and write) about pilots in less complicated times, isn't it?
tracyj23: BSG - L/K - a moment like thistracyj23 on February 28th, 2008 12:08 am (UTC)
That was sweet! I really liked it. It had the perfect awkwardness of pilots circa Home. :)

Ah, how wonderful to remember a less complicated time. (And to think, back then we thought THIS was complicated!)

Lovely ficlet!
suffolkgirlsuffolkgirl on February 28th, 2008 09:10 pm (UTC)
Ah, how wonderful to remember a less complicated time. (And to think, back then we thought THIS was complicated!)

LOL, how little did we know! It was nice to go back to S2 pilots for a change.
Janet: pilots - you're my friendjatnj on February 28th, 2008 12:11 am (UTC)
That was adorable!
suffolkgirlsuffolkgirl on February 28th, 2008 09:10 pm (UTC)
Well, pilots are always adorable. ;)
canadiangirl_86 on February 28th, 2008 05:17 am (UTC)
Really lovely. I always love stories that have Kara making a real effort with Lee, and looking after him in her own way.

Excellent job!
suffolkgirlsuffolkgirl on February 28th, 2008 09:12 pm (UTC)
Thanks! I like those kind of stories too - especially as up to late S2 I was never quite sure how much Kara cared about Lee, so it was always nice to read about her trying to be there for him.
cherylad: K&L Home from Homecherylad on February 28th, 2008 05:35 am (UTC)
This was very good!!!! I love S1 K&L!!! Such a touching way to think of their friendship, that they both know is more but just can't deal with!!!


Thanks!
suffolkgirlsuffolkgirl on February 28th, 2008 09:13 pm (UTC)
Such a touching way to think of their friendship, that they both know is more but just can't deal with!!!

Hm...remembering that scene in the hangar bay in Maelstrom, nothing much has changed since then, has it? LOL!
helen_c: bsg lee karahelen_c on February 28th, 2008 07:13 pm (UTC)
You know how much I love this, but I'll say it again. The discussion about Zak chokes my up every time, and the gift is just perfect...

Thanks for sharing. :)
suffolkgirlsuffolkgirl on February 28th, 2008 09:14 pm (UTC)
Thanks so much, glad you enjoyed it. Since writing Starting Over, I always seem to drag Zak in somehow!

Are you doing a fic for the Realm Challenge? I can't remember...
helen_c: bsg lee karahelen_c on February 29th, 2008 05:41 am (UTC)
Zak does have a way to write himself into fics, doesn't he?

Not doing a fic for the challenge, no... I'm working on several things already, RL is busy as it is, and I didn't see any prompt that immediately made my muse get into gear. ;)
anyareed: K&L - By My Sideanyareed on March 3rd, 2008 09:28 pm (UTC)
That was a very sweet piece! I thought you captured that time period well - that kind of awkward not-sure-what they had. Looking back, things were so much simpler then. I'm glad you are writing again!

Edited at 2008-03-03 09:28 pm (UTC)
is that how they do it in the pros?: tv - bsg - lee smileantismiles on March 4th, 2008 04:28 am (UTC)
Oh, I loved this. I could definitely see this happening. Too bad Ron Moore doesn't have your lovely imagination. Thanks for sharing! It's great to see you writing again.