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Scene Title Scuttlebutt
Synopsis A trip to the targetting range turns into gossip between Gillian and Elisabeth. But Gillian got pointers on her less than great firing skills!
Date January 14, 2010

USS George Washington's Firing Range

The on ship firing range isn't a place Gillian's spent much time… but from the way she fires she probably should be there more often. After six shots, a bullet finally manages to hit the target, on the far left. With the protective glasses and earphones blocking the sound, it's difficult at first to notice that something that'd been there at the last public meeting is gone. The brand on her right cheek has mysteriously vanished, no longer marring her face with a stylized V.

Putting the sidearm down, she starts to reload, even as she frowns down at the gun. She wasn't signed up for her ability to shoot, that's for sure.

The blond cop is on her way into the range — even wearing the required headgear in spite of her abilities — and pauses behind the familiar brunette to watch. There's a faint wince as Elisabeth notes Gillian's ability (or lack thereof) with the firearm in her hand. She waits until the other woman puts the gun down and then steps into the cubby behind her. "And here I thought you could do almost anything," she quips lightly. "Want some pointers?" she offers. There's no censure in her tone, merely a sincere offer of assistance as she sets her own 9mm down on the shelf in front of Gillian.

While reloading, Gillian's hand slips at the sound of a voice through muffled headphones. The bullet tumbles away and falls to the floor, but she doesn't chase after it, instead following it with her eyes for a moment before removing the headphones enough to say, "What?" It's hard to hear sometimes. "Oh— hey, Elisabeth. Haven't really seen you much on this city sized ship." Or the island. But for much of the trip since she arrived had been spent in her room, for various stupid man-related reasons. "Yeah, sure, I could use some pointers. I've had lessons, but… I guess I was never cut out for shooting things."
Tilting her head, Elisabeth admits quietly, "I've been somewhat keeping to myself. And… I guess I didn't figure you needed me in your face. Considering the last time we were in proximity and everything." She nibbles her lip and says mildly, "In case I have not mentioned it? I'm … sorry. For what happened at Pinehearst. And grateful. I was told you were also the one who pulled me out." She down to pick up the bullet from the floor, holding it out to Gillian. "Shooting's simple if you remember a couple of things: Keep both your eyes open, and squeeze the trigger, don't pull it."

"At Pine— oh," Gillian says, grimacing as the memory comes back. "Well, at least we learned the lesson about me augmenting you at close proximity when it was just a clone-me." Otherwise the apology would be to a grave, most likely! "I'll be sure to put myself at a safe distance if we ever have to do anything like that again. Though I am glad … Kazimir … decided to put us on different teams. The two of us could probably level half the building, but the chance I'd walk away from it would be smaller. I died enough last year. Don't need to do it again."

The earphones pop back into place as she reaches for the gun. Fully loaded or not, she takes in a slow breath and tries to follow the instructions. One bullet misses, much like before— she favors the left side a little too much, but another breath and it goes better. Not quite the edge, but … not close to the actual target either. The gun lowers and she tugs on the earphones again. "I'll just be glad my part of the mission is basically human battery pack."

There's a soft laugh as Gillian dismisses it with at least some semblance of dry humor. In spite of the factual nature of what the brunette says, Elisabeth appreciates her attitude about it. "I'm grateful it was just a clone of you, as well." She notes the facial mark, a faint frown popping up. But she opts not to ask, it's not her business. Really. It's not.

Watching the shots with a practiced eye, Elisabeth nods slightly. Then when Gillian turns back, Liz says, "Even being a human battery, you need to know how to use it in case you need it." She moves now, stepping up behind Gillian. "Put your feet shoulder width apart. Think of it like bowling. Keep both yees on the target. One eye will tend to have dominance, I can show you how to work that out later, but the main thing is to keep your eyes focused. Exhale as you pull the trigger, and then when the gun kicks back, let it. It'll go up, let it bounce down, and then aim for the next squeeze." Her hands lightly smooth over Gilly's shoulders, adjusting her stance and how she holds the firearm, then illustrating the bounceback part by moving Gillian's arms in the directions as she demonstrates. "If you grip the gun too tightly, you'll be overcontrolling its movements and you'll jerk off target. Think of it like driving a car — the tighter you hold the steering wheel, the less control you actually have. So hold it firmly but not like you're trying to choke it to death. And like I said…. breathe. Breathe in after each shot and breathe out as you pull the trigger. It settles your shoulders into the right places."

"Bowling. I actually worked at a bowling alley for a while," Gillian says softly, musing a little as she looks down at her feet and shifts them around. The gun is reloaded, and she tries her best to follow the instructions. Not wanting to be a sitting duck while everyone around her kill-kill-kills is a good plan for her, too. She didn't go into Moab or Pinehearst unarmed, but thinking back it's a wonder she managed to hit a broadside of a barn. Breathe in, breathe out, squeeze. Breath in, breathe out, squeeze. A little better again, still leaning to the left, and veering high.

Pulling the earphone back again as she reloads, she glances over to comment, "So I hear you and Cardinal are together."
Tipping her head as she watches where the bullets go, Liz narrows her eyes. She's pulling consistently left. Anticipating the shot, flinching would make her go high. She's nodding slightly, though, seeing where the problems are. Pulling the headset off one ear while Gillian reloads so they can talk between rounds, the blond doesn't seem bothered at the observation. "Do I even want to know where that bit of scuttlebutt came from?" she asks dryly. "You're flinching when you pull the trigger. Try aiming a little lower than you think you have to. And sight directly down the barrel with both eyes when you shoot this time," she instructs easily as they talk.

"Cat has a surprisingly big mouth at times," Gillian says, grinning a little until dimples appear on her cheeks. "He's a good guy— well, not the traditional goodie good, but good where it counts. I was glad to be on the same side as him at Pinehearst and in Argentina." From the tone of her voice, she's fairly fond of him, though not in the way she might be fond of others. The instructions are followed, aiming a lower, but she still squints a bit rather than keeping both eyes open. There's visible tension on her forehead— but closer again.

The information that Cat is the source of the gossip surprises Elisabeth, and it shows on her expression. She laughs softly and shakes her head. "Well, he's definitely that. And we're… what we are." There's a faint shrug as Gillian turns back around to the range. "I think we're in it for the long haul, but neither one of us is much for the playing house routine," she comments as she slides her headgear back in place. When Gillian comes back to reload the next time, Liz is nodding. "Better," she says as she studies the target. "You're still flinching, but that's something that gets better with time." If Gillian's affection or relationship with the man in question bothers here, there is zero indication. "It's just a matter of keeping up the practice to make it better at this point. Your stance is pretty good. Just…. if someone comes at you out there and you have to shoot, don't close your eyes," she laughs. "You'll miss and be a squish mark or something. And I'd hate to explain that to Richard."

"I'd feel sorry for Peyton when she hears about it," Gillian admits for a moment, knowing of the connection between the girl and Cardinal's group. That's why she called her roommate, cause it was the one safe way to know the information would get to them and to Phoenix as well without implicating anyone. "She'd have to explain it to her roommate, and he doesn't know half of what we're doing, so he wouldn't take it very well." The gun gets put down for a few moments, rubbing her hands over what's available of her face, before she looks back over. "I'm planning to make it home, so I'll definitely keep my eyes open, or stay behind Noriko if I can't. Her breasts look like they could deflect bullets." It's a joke, and an attempt at the truth at the same time.

There's a confused pause as Gillian gives the roundabout explanation regarding Peyton. "Wait… what? I dont' even think I know who her roommate is," Elisabeth admits. And then she snickers with laughter over Noriko's breasts, covering her mouth to contain it. "Oh…oh, that's just bad."

The snickering helps make Gillian laugh out loud for a moment, one of the few times she's had something real to laugh about. "Well it's true. I barely resisted asking her if they were water balloons when I found out what her power was." The glasses that shield her eyes fog a bit, and she reaches up under them to wipe away tears. Yeah, that was a good laugh. "Peyton's roommate is a guy named Aaron. Good guy, but rather emotional at times. The two of them helped me get over a through Refrain withdrawal." She used to think it would be hard to admit that before, but it comes out easily now, somehow. "So I owe them quite a bit, but he also got rather attached to me. So I'd hate to be in Peyton's shoes if it I didn't make it back."

Elisabeth manages to stifle her laughter to chuckles over the water balloon comment, but only by a hair. Her gaze goes a little more somber at the mention of the Refrain. "I knew you'd been picked up in a Refrain raid," she says quietly. "By the time I found out, you'd already been moved — I guess to go on this run, really." She grimaces a little, shuffling her feet and looking concerned. "I didn't want to pry into whether you'd gotten popped actually doing the stuff — I've seen what that shit can do. Christ, you should have seen Richard's face when I told him about that part." From the tone in that comment, she's clearly aware that there's a relationship there, but her concern? "Are you actually okay? I know the withdrawal is… hell." There's no other word for it.

"I wasn't even there for the Refrain— technically. It was just one of those fucking horrible coindences," Gillian says, scratching at her neck a moment. "I found out one of the Lighthouse kids was stashing some, and then disappeared before I could confront her, so I went to drag her out of there on my own. And the cops just happened to be raiding the place at the same time. I'm not sure if the kid made it out or not. I'll have to find out when I get back, I guess." She was tempted to ask, but… "So no, I wasn't actually caught doing it. I only did it a few times."

"It's some evil stuff, Gilly…" Elisabeth grimaces. "I hope you don't do it anymore." That's all she'll say, though her worry for Gillian's clear. "When we get back, if you can't find the kid…. let me know. I've still got friends on the force, even though I'm going to have to resign. We can look into it."

"I figured that out the hard way," Gillian says, scratching at her forehead for a moment, before looking back at the older woman. "I don't plan to do it again. Going through the withdrawal once was enough of a deterent. And being in the middle of fucking nowhere helped some too." Can't really fall off the wagon when it's completely unavailable. Nevermind she's been clean of it for some time. "You're going to have to resign?"

Liz grins slightly. "Yeah, well… some of us seem to have to do that," she responds, nudging Gillian with her shoulder companionably. She's relieved, though. There's a shrug then and she nods slightly. "Yeah…. the person who grabbed me for this run is masquerading…. well, I suppose I can be something approaching fair," she concedes. "He's moonlighting as an IA prick. Now that they have their fucking little files of my activities with Phoenix, I've been informed that I will be resigning out of respect for my 'good behavior' on this mission." Her tone is darkly amused. "But they've offered me a job on FRONTLINE." There's a waggle of her brows as she grins at Gillian. "It'll be fun."

"What? FRONTLINE? Those military dudes that have abilities?" Gillian asks, eyebrows raised in surprise as she pushes back the glasses. The guy sounds like a jerk, but the nudging followed by the mention of continuing to work for the government and become a member of FRONTLINE… "That's interesting. But I guess these teams kinda proved we could be useful. I'm glad they didn't ask me, though. You've seen how not-soldier I happen to be." She shakes the gun around like someone might a toy. Even if she is getting a little better. "So you're taking it?"

Looking down the range, Elisabeth nods slowly. "Yeah…. I'm taking it. I agreed to do it before I really thought too hard about it, but the more I think about it? The more I feel okay with it," she admits, leaning back against the wall of the cubby and crossing her arms. "Part of their pitch is kinda … blowing smoke. Blah blah, I've got more urban combat experience than a lot of SWAT teams, precision control of my ability, blah blah." She smirks. "But… the thing is… if it's done right, the FRONTLINE teams will be what we're out here doing right now. You know?" She shrugs a little and sighs. "And I guess I want to believe that can actually happen."

"Yeah, almost like this whole thing could have been seen as a test drive. Even if some of the people conscripted to be tossed out here really aren't the urban combat SWAT warriors that you and Cardinal and others are," Gillian says, likely meaning herself by that. "Well, you'll be out there fighting the good fight legally now. While I try to decide if I want to actually go back to school, or just go back to being a Librarian. That's pretty much my options right now. Though I wonder how things'll go now that I'm registered."

Elisabeth considers and looks at Gillian. "Well… it didn't really change much for me. People…. looked at me oddly. Sometimes. It means more to some people than others."

"I'm just afraid that people will knock on my door wanting to get their power augmented for one reason or another," Gillian admits, with kind of an odd shrug. "I've had this power for over a year now, and that's what seems to happen when people find out what I can do. It's one of the reasons Vanguard tried to get their hands on me before."

There's a grimace. "Yeah…. Abby used to have the same problem," Elisabeth says. "I'd say don't advertise. And …. " She grins a little. "Keep an emergency beacon on you? I'm pretty sure Cat can make sure you have one, with an emergency pager to a teleporter for extraction?" She chuckles. "And now I sound all paranoid and stuff, but it's not paranoia when they're really out to get you, is it?"

"No, it's not paranoia when they really are out to get you," Gillian says with another laugh. "The pager sounds like a good idea. It would suck if someone like White or another Vanguard used the Registration list to knock on my door and use me to do something horrible. I can control my ability better now, but… it slips sometimes." And part of her knows someone could make her use it. If they found out pain is one of the things that makes it slip… Cardinal found that out in Argentina. "I think I'm done with practice. Thanks for the advice. Hopefully it'll keep me alive once we get to Antarctica."

With a shrug, Liz admits, "We all have triggers to make us slip control, Gilly." But she nods. "Anytime. If you want to practice tomorrow, I'll be down here for an hour or so around three," she says. "I can go through some clips with you if you want."

"I'll do that. More practice before we land in the frozen wasteland won't hurt," Gillian says with a dimpled half-smile, before she starts to walk away. Shooting a glance over her shoulder, she adds, "I hope Cardinal's sunburn clears up before we get there. At least one of us deserves to go into the fight with a happy glow."

Picking up her 9mm, Elisabeth laughs at Gillian's comment. "Oh, his sunburn's doing juuuuust fine," she replies with a wink. And then she turns around, aims, and efficiently empties her clip down the same range Gillian was using.

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