forwardmomentum: (someday you'll be fine)

[personal profile] forwardmomentum 2017-09-14 03:13 am (UTC)(link)
For a moment, Miles is sure he's watching a holovid. The woman on the vid plate looks like something out of a period drama, bloodied and armored straight out of the Time of Isolation. For that moment, fleeting as it is, Miles is stunned, stalls out -- but it's only a moment, and then he's recovered himself, leaning in intently. What the hell?

"Without a doubt," he says, swallowing his surprise, and glances out the corner of his eye at the comms offer. He gives Miles a nod. Scanners confirm ten on board. "Can you identify yourself?"

She seems sincere, but her ship bears certain resemblances to the one he's chasing, and that's a little hard to ignore.
mahalakshmi: (• he sings for you so tenderly)

[personal profile] mahalakshmi 2017-09-14 08:04 am (UTC)(link)
She leans forward, blinking again in that palatable exhausted. She can't tell him the truth, not right now. Not until her people were safe. "Refugees from the planet of Jhansi, Marathi System."

Bluntly put and to that, there isn't a lie on her face. Open its exhaustion, she hangs on for them and them alone. She cannot back down, not now, she has come too far.
forwardmomentum: (stomping on your fingers)

[personal profile] forwardmomentum 2017-09-14 10:27 pm (UTC)(link)
Miles's brow furrows slightly. The name rings a distant bell. Marathi System, Marathi System... He remembers the name from military history courses years ago at the Service Academy. On one far-flung edge of the Nexus, far enough that its nearest neighbors stopped paying attention to its local system wars long, long ago. The wormhole's been effectively blockaded for nearly as long as Barrayar had been cut off, though last Miles had heard in school...

"Refugees?" The surprise is edged with skepticism, but of the healthy professional variety. "I was under the impression that the Marathi System was united under a multiplanetary government now."

A very closed one, but hey, the Athosians keep to themselves, too. Then again, Athos entirely different place.
mahalakshmi: (• you should be ashamed)

[personal profile] mahalakshmi 2017-09-15 03:07 am (UTC)(link)
"They lied."

It's snarled, out before she can even think of the rest of it. Vicious heat that comes up like it had never gone out, just burned itself low. A surge forward, pressing on the attack - is that what they thought? Peace? A united government?

Panting, trying to calm herself down, she lowers herself back. "There is no multiplanetary government, only fools that believe their lies."

It's a harsh barked word, nearer to an order and somewhere off screen comes the plea: Rani, please and she holds up a hand to silence it, barking right back over her shoulder, "If he wants to ask me questions, he can do it when there's a chance we will all be alive to answer them properly."
forwardmomentum: (nothing says "i miss you")

[personal profile] forwardmomentum 2017-09-18 03:12 am (UTC)(link)
Miles's brow furrows slightly -- but the skepticism is fading now, replaced by a keen interest. She has a fair point, and while he's always retained a healthy paranoia, her people are far outnumbered by his if this is some kind of bait-in. But he doesn't sense a real threat to him or his crew. It's in her eyes -- that's hard to fake.

"Just so," Miles says promptly, nodding at the vid plate, and then leans slightly out of frame. "Lieutenant, you heard the lady. Prepare a shuttle, and tap any off-duty med techs. I'll meet you at the shuttle bay in fifteen." He turns back to look at her through the vid. "Bring your ship starboard, and we'll bring the med techs. Might I have the courtesy of your name? You've got mine."
mahalakshmi: (• he sings for you so tenderly)

[personal profile] mahalakshmi 2017-09-18 04:57 am (UTC)(link)
"Understood." There, she pauses - hovering on a mouthful and it would all be so grand if they could just trust him, and this all was to have a play like ending where their ship is saved and they go on their merry way like none of this ever happened.

If only.

"Manikarnika. I am Manikarnika."

Her hand lifts, cups to her brow in a formal greeting before she steps back and the screen flickers and dies.

- It's those same fifteen minutes later, that the ship is brought round. Albeit not as smoothly as his. Whoever piloting was doing a rough job of it. But even so, her and the rest of the crew - 9 of hers and the original pilot, a man held at as it turns out - sword point. And there she was, limping along behind him. The hand not holding the weapon clutching to her waist, the blood seeping through the heavy leather gauntlets with each shallow breath. Forcing herself the rest of the way through on dragging steps, her crew behind her.

"Arrest him. I don't care where you put him. Out the airlock as far as it concerns me."
forwardmomentum: (but i declined)

[personal profile] forwardmomentum 2017-09-19 02:15 am (UTC)(link)
The Dendarii not carrying med kits have their stunners at the ready -- no waving around nerve disruptors, Miles had told them, nothing fatal -- and there's a ripple of bemusement at seeing the pilot. Miles keeps his eyes on their leader, the fierce woman from the vid screen. He finds himself, oddly enough, fighting off the particularly Barrayaran urge to bow -- cut it out, boy, you're not on Barrayar right now, and as far as this woman knows, you're not even Barrayaran. So instead he gives her only a generous nod and a flourishing salute, meeting her eyes from at least a head below her. His height, his oddly-shaped body wouldn't have been wholly apparent through the vid screen, but his eyes are no less sharp for it.

"Manikarnika." It's a greeting, a salute to someone of equal status, leader to leader. He jerks his head at the captive pilot. "You could have mentioned you had a hostage. Is he an immediate danger to anyone?"
mahalakshmi: (• and this to you I pledge:)

[personal profile] mahalakshmi 2017-09-19 02:31 am (UTC)(link)
"No he is not. Are you?"

Her voice is silky smooth. Light and easy. All threat that doesn't need to be pressed anymore than the sword tip she presses into his nape. Blunt enough to not draw blood, hard enough to threaten it anyway.

' No, no! Please! Get her away from me! She's crazy, they're all a bunch of backwater -'

"Do shut up, any time you feel like it." The sword presses in deeper, silencing him as abruptly as he started to talk. Once he does, she turns back towards Miles. Whatever he looks like, she doesn't even pause to consider it. It's his eyes she meets, it's his eyes she returns full with the full weight of herself out from underneath the set of her helmet, the blood and the sweat that has dried on her skin in streaks, all the way down her chainmail, and heavy leathers. Direct and so wholly focused on him alone. Like it might just be easier if she clawed her way out of herself, even where she is wary enough of the other soldiers around them.

"We cannot pilot a ship. So we found someone who could, and he was kind enough as to take us this far. I did not mention it because I was not sure what your stance would be and I couldn't take that risk of refusal."
forwardmomentum: (i compile a list)

[personal profile] forwardmomentum 2017-09-19 03:08 am (UTC)(link)
The smell of iron and leather brings back a wave of sense memory, tangled in the scent of blood, and her eyes -- they take hold of him even more firmly, seizing up his chest. He has no choice but to return that look, that intensity reflected in his eyes but wholly his own. If she had any doubts about him and his intent, if she trusts his eyes, she'll see that he holds none. Miles draws in a breath to rein it in and he holds up a hand, clearing his throat as she presses the sharp edge of the sword against the pilot.

"If I meant you any harm, I wouldn't have invited you onto my ship. And I think we're past the point where that's necessary, eh?" He waves that hand at a couple of his officers, who step forward. "Chang, Tate, take this man to C deck, will you? I'll be along to deal with him when I'm done here." Not to holding cells -- Miles isn't sure what, exactly, the man has personally done wrong, and besides that, the Dendarii sure as hell aren't law enforcement unless someone else is paying them to be. If the man will consent to a little fast-penta interrogation and exonerate himself of any real wrongdoing, Miles will just have him dropped off at the next hub and let him sort himself out.

"You three," he says, turning his attention on the med techs, "get anyone in critical condition on float palettes and take them to sickbay immediately, and unless the fleet surgeon is wrist-deep in someone else's torso, she is to put aside whatever else she is doing and get in the OR. You can tell her that the orders come from me directly. Everyone else, escort the rest of the crew to sickbay and tend to them."

He looks back up at their leader, looking like she's just stepped out of a damned holovid, and he doesn't offer her his arm, because that'd be too damn Barrayaran, but there's an air of slightly displaced courtesy about him nonetheless. "If you're not in critical condition yourself, I'd like to escort you personally, Manikarnika."
mahalakshmi: (• am I making sense?)

[personal profile] mahalakshmi 2017-09-24 09:26 am (UTC)(link)
None of her crew moves until she has finished taking him in until she has taken all that he has to give before she turns back, lifts her hand to direct them forward. The words flowing quick and in Hindi. Directing them with an ease of familiarity that once she has given permission, they move forward to the crew that has stepped up to help them.

Which the one stiff nod she gives back to Miles follows along the same, as she sheaths her sword. Her other hand curling over her abdomen where the blood flows still. Her gaze on him still, but it hazes a little, the pain back, now the edge has worn off. The tight pain working her jaw tense as by slow steps, she limps towards him. "At your will, Admiral."
forwardmomentum: (fixed with parcel tape)

[personal profile] forwardmomentum 2017-10-03 10:17 pm (UTC)(link)
Miles finally gets a decent look at the stomach wound on her and winces slightly, holding a hand out for her to stop. Ye gods, the woman stops for nothing, does she? Remind you of anyone, boy?

"On second thought," he says, tilting his head toward the med techs, "I think I might reassess you into that critical condition category. Er, how long have you had that stomach wound?"
mahalakshmi: (• Who's a heretic now?)

[personal profile] mahalakshmi 2017-10-09 09:44 am (UTC)(link)
A lack of technology that extends long past just the archaic chainmail and plate. The helmet and swords. The only thing that seems to be holding her together was linen bandages below her hand when she pulls away a little to look at it, underneath her armour. "A day, at most."

She hasn't looked at it, she realises, she hasn't stopped for the three days that came before it too. It's... well it is bad, isn't it? A ribbed open line to sensitive places that are just ready for infection. She feels bloodless, suddenly, waxy under her brown complexion. "Forgive me, Admiral I think..." she sways, half a step more, she realises, she might collapse. That won't do. Not for a Queen, not for the Rani of Jhansi who - massacres innocents and slaughters the helpless and - "... I think I meant to say more, to you."

The ground, suddenly seemed, closer to her, than it really ought to be, and the lights of the docking bay, a solar spin of Jhansi's three moons swinging back and forth. He wouldn't mind if she laid her head down, would he - just about anywhere would do - this corridor would do, just as well. As she slips forward the rest of the way down in front of him. To knees and the topple towards the ground that seems as sure as earth turning.
forwardmomentum: (you think this is about drugs)

crawls back from the dead

[personal profile] forwardmomentum 2017-10-18 02:07 am (UTC)(link)
Miles does not, to his credit, try to catch her. The urge does spring up like a kneejerk reflex, but a broken arm probably wouldn't cushion her fall much, and then...he'd have a broken arm. But he does still lurch forward even as he barks at a med tech catch her. Something about her reminds him so fiercely of home that it's jarring, touching his mind in a place he generally keeps tucked in the back when he's with the Dendarii. Something fierce and earthy and terrifyingly raw. He wonders if they've ever even heard of Barrayar. He also wonders, just a little bit, how badly this is going to come and bite him in the ass later.

He's there when she comes to in sickbay, still in his gray dress uniform with his rank insignia. By now he looks a little more wired than before, courtesy of a few extra cups of coffee to keep him through the late hours.

"You had a bit of a fall there," he chirps in vast understatement. "And a hell of a stomach wound. I put my fleet surgeon on the job. I wouldn't recommend trying to move just yet."