Phillip Revealed
Phillip Revealed
Arc: None
Summary: Some background about Lt. Bradford is revealed in FAL.
Date: 2658.139
Related Logs: None
Participants: Phillip Paz Saint-Cloud Raine

Though a single space, the ship's lounge is divided into three sections by a pair of heavily tinted glass panes, painted with the logos of the six squadrons which serve aboard the Majestic. Blue carpeting runs through all three, and the only entrance and exit is located through the center section.

The center space sports a scattering of metal tables and matching chairs, all bare silver to contrast with blue carpet. A small bar is located along the aft bulkhead, with a wide selection of beverages located in the cabinets behind and a few barstools set in front. Flanking the bar are a pair of large vidscreens, to keep the crew up to date on the latest in news or entertainment.

The side rooms are configured identically, each with a small vidscreen mounted above a shelf that runs along the bulkhead, giving occupants a place to rest drinks or possessions. The room to port has been set up with a pool table, while the room to starboard sports a pair of poker tables.

Painted on the starboard-side glass partition is the squadron logo of the Minutemen. A copper-green image of an 18th century militiaman stands over a shield-shaped striped red and white background. Text above the logo reads '1087th Fighter Squadron' and below 'Don't Tread On Me'.

The room was empty save for the bartender who is cleaning some glassware at the bar in the back and 2nd Lt. Phillip "Iceblade" Bradford who is sitting over at the small table in the corner. On the table sits a beer bottle completely drained of its contents, a second bottle that remains unopened, and a third almost emptied bottle with which the pilot is currently engaged. Iceblade leaning into the table with his arms crossed on it. His eyes are fixed on the center of the table and he appears heavily troubled and deep in thought.

Midnight at FAL…Put your Pazes to bed…The young, raven haired Latina fighter jock ambles into First and Last with a distinctly unhappy look on her face as she dips into the first barstool she finds. "Beer me, Joe." she calls to the bartender. "You ever have one of those days?" she asks the man, and presumably anyone within ear shot, "When you wonder why you even bother getting out of your rack? I mean, even if it's just to chuck yourself out of the closest airlock?" she sighs.

Trees can be nocturnal too right? Raine yawns as she wanders in. There's a faintly sad aura to her, as if remembering something depressing. She keeps a bonsai with her, this one a small Rosemary tree. She wipes at her eyes, blinking fast and wanders up to the bar. "May I have some tea please?" She asks quietly. She pauses, noticing Paz and smiles. "Hello there." Though it doesn't seem quite so cheery, more subdued.

It is only a few moments later that probably the shortest officer most people have ever seen enters the Lounge with his duffle over his shoulder. He can only be, tops, five foot two but he is BROAD of shoulders with short squat legs and powerful arms that seem a little bit longer in ratio to the body then most people ending in massive hands. His rank designates him as a Lieutenant Commander and his division badge reads "ASTRO". The name tag? "SAINT-CLOUD". He runs a massive hand through his short buzzed red hair and peers about the room, slowly for a few moment. Cautiously he makes his way towards the bar.

Paz gives the newly arrived Doctor a wan smile of her own as she sips at her beer. "What's got you down, Doc?" she asks. "You get dragged into the Chief's office to get reamed out for messing up the sim pods?" she smirks cynically. The new arrival does not go unnoticed, turning her head, the young 1st LT turns to peer at him curiously. "Hey, Doc, who's the new guy?" she stage whispers.

"No, just miss a friend who was lost," Raine smiles back sadly. She takes a deep breath, "I shouldn't stew over it, but- he liked bonsai trees too and he was sort of like an older brother," She blinks fast and sets her tree down. She asks for some water for her tree too. Then a pause, "Who?" She turns just in time to notice the shortest officer about. She blinks owlishly a few times. "Haven't met him," Raine admits. She looks like she might greet him- hesitates. Blurts out, "Hello sir."

Saint-Cloud is thanking the tender for his glass of bourbon and ginger ale when he hears Raine speak to him. He looks over (and up) at the doctor.. and notes the rank and of course the white coat. "Good evening, lieutenant." he says, noting her nervousness since she did just blurt. "And at ease. I'm not even officially signed in.. yet." he looks to the pilot, again his sharp blue eyes studying her as he did Raine and smiles to her as well. "Nice to being relegated to the 'new guy' status," he quips, though in an easy and friendly manner. "I'm your new Astro." and that also means 2nd Officer of the ship.

As the several additional officers enter, each gives Iceblade a wave or a nod, which has gone unnoticed by Lt. Bradford. So deep he is downcast that even the loud crash of glass from a cup dropped into the bar's sink doesn't cause Iceblade to turn or even flinch.

"Oh-ho! A new Astrogator." Paz replies, surveying the man carefully before replying. "So, who'd you piss off to get sentenced to this boat, sir?" she inquires with a cynical smirk, sipping at her beer without seeming the slightest bit interested in coming to attention. "Don't tell me, lemme guess….You got caught porking the Admiral's secretary? Wife? Daughter?" she chuckles.

A pause. She smiles at him. She's shy. Poor fellow. "Really? That's pretty neat," Raine offers. And yes, she has a tree with her. People around her seem oddly used to it. She looks over to Phillip and blinks. She goes quiet, perhaps considering what to say. "All of our pilots seem really sad in here, I hope they're okay," she taps her chin thoughtfully and blinks at Paz. her eyes widen at the joke. "I'm sure he wouldn't do that, right?" Riiiiiiiiight? Raine hopes.

Saint-Cloud smirks and sips his Seven and Gin before setting the tumbler down. Every move he makes is careful, precise, as if he is afraid he might break something he touches. "I tend to choose my liaisons a little better than that. My wives drove that into me," he states. Yes. He said wives. "No, I had the honor of driving a light carrier into a Kilrathi dreadnought. It was on purpose, mind you. It even got me a promotion. But command decided to let me cool down a bit and sent me to the academy for a while to teach, but apparently your tactical crew here is… it is better left unsaid. So I got sent back out." He is about to respond to the doctor when he hears the glass fall and break. The short man raises a brow. "I see what you mean." he says, then to answer the question. "Would I? Oh yes. I would have. But as I said, I was informed to make better choices unless I want to sleep on the couch next time I am home."

Paz regards the little Astrogator for a long moment before giving a throaty laugh and extending her hand. "Ha! Welcome aboard, sir. First Lieutenant Paz Garcia of the 1087th," she says by way of introduction. "And I wouldn't blame you, by the way, for the wife or the daughter," she winks playfully. "I'm not bi, but I am open minded, sir," she chuckles again before she spots Phillip in a sad, sad state. "This here's Doc Raine, best CMO you could ask for. And be nice to her trees. They're like her totems," she adds. "Excuse me, sir, Doc, I need to see to my wingman," she says, snagging her bear and making for the downcast pilot.

After having nearly sat there with an emptied second bottle, Iceblade finally looks up as he begins to open his third and hopefully yet doubtful bottle of beer. He notices Paz, Raine, and a new face over at the bar. In fact, the appearance of this new individual is odd. It looks like a larger version of somebody with dwarfism, a long-removed genetic abnormality in humans. Seeing the approach of Paz, he decides to stand up, extend his arm for a handshake, and put on a more cheery expression, which almost works except for the distant, sorrowful look in his eyes.

Blink. Raine turns red at Paz's comments. "I'm the /acting/ CMO. I don't have the rank for it… I really hope someone takes it too, it's like herding cats. Except they can blissfully ignore me," Sadface. She smiles, amused at the wives and daughters commentary. "I'm Raine Winterson, Lieutenant JG. I just duct tape people back together," she waves a hand dismissively. It's nothing, really. "And yes, please do be nice to my trees." They seem as much a part of her as her herself. She peers at Phillip. "Hey… are you alright?" She's looking overwhelmed. She's been talking.

Saint-Cloud chuckles at Raine's comment then introduces himself to her and Paz (and anyone else who is within earshot). "Well, /Doctor/.. Lieutenant. I'm Lieutenant Commander Dorian Saint-Cloud. And It is a pleasure to meet you. And yes, I will be good to your tree's, Doctor. Plants are very special where I am from and well cared for.. Well.. not by me. I don't have a green thumb. One or two of my spouses work in agriculture, though, so I know enough not to kill them," he says. He isn't REALLY following Paz but the distance is close enough that all he really has to do is turn and face Phillip. He sees the hand and in return takes it.. Easily engulfing the pilots in his own huge one. "And a pleasure to meet you."

"Okay, Rookie, what's your malfunction du jour?" Paz asks simply, slipping into a seat across the table from young Phillip. "Your girlfriend take up with someone else?" she asks with just a hint of pitiless indifference. "Parents get divorced? Grandparent or parents die?" she asks, stretching out languidly in the seat and sipping her beer, rather pointedly ignoring the introductions going on around her.

"2nd Lt. Phillip Bradfor..dd…" Upon shaking the Lt. Cmdr.'s hand, Phillip finds himself nearly losing his balance. Under more sober conditions, the handshake would not been as drastic, but after downing a few bottles of beer in addition to a glass of wine from earlier, well let's just say Phillip is a little off. After catching himself and returning his arm to his side, he quickly adds "Callsign Iceblade." Phillip then turns to Paz, "Uh…well it's not really anything like that, just…wait girlfriend!?! Geez, I haven't even gone out with her yet and everybody on the ship knows."

Raine smiles at Saint-Cloud. "That's very kind of you. I am afraid the pleasure is all mine sir," she nods. "Really? They're good trees," she nods. She looks to Paz and Phillip now. "And yeah, she kind of works for me…" She rubs the back of her head, looking at Phillip. "I have to pay attention to what goes on in MedBay," she sighs. "It's not like most of the doctors will LISTEN so if I pay attention, then I can figure things out." She gets her tea and sips it quietly. She seems content to watch and listen as much as anything else. Existing is an energetic thing for Raine.

Saint-Cloud frowns slightly at Iceblade's… status. The swaying and the wobbling. He lets the two pilots speak since, really, he doesn't have a CLUE what is going on and the less he knows the better.. maybe. "How about I get him a coffee…" he tells Paz, then looks to Raine and smiles again. "Not so kind. Just truthful. And yes, trees are special back home. The natural plants back on Dusk are.. not like earth trees. The gravity is too high and the atmosphere and weather.. is not conducive to their growth. Though I think my wife or my husband said they were trying to introduce a genetically engineered species of pine.." he scratches his head. "But I don't remember fully. Life sciences always made my eyes glaze over…. But their always glazed when I spoke physics so.. it's all good."

"Coffee's a good idea, sir," Paz nods. "None for me, though," she interjects just as quickly. "Okay, Iceblade, start talking," she says firmly. The Commander and the CMO's banter falls away as she focuses on her comrade. "You're on a bender, that much is obvious, wanna tell me why?"

Phillip turns his head slightly towards Saint-Cloud as he waves off the coffee, "Nay, I'll be fine as long as I don't do anything that might throw my balance off." "Like flying," Iceblade adds with a chuckle and an eye roll as he turns his head back to Paz. "Recent events" is all Iceblade says before he returns to his former seat.

Raine looks a little worried seeing Iceblade's state. Her eyebrows furrow. She looks to Saint-Cloud and nods, "That sounds like a good idea. Just don't give him too much more booze," A frown. She tilts her head then looks to Saint-Cloud. Marriage must be different there. She looks confused a moment then nods. "I see. You'll have to stop by and see the bitty trees. I think you'd like them," she offers. She's shy, but friendly. "Physics isn't my forte, but I'm not too bad at it. I just - don't do it much. They keep me busy handing out Hello Kitty bandaids," She smiles.

Cole wanders his way along into First and Last, taking a little peek around at just which members of the Majestic's merry band of miscreants happen to be lurking here this evening.

Jim seeing, a bunch of people in the First and Last, decided to waltz right on in. He doesn't seem to recognize anyone there.

Late night on the TCS Majestic and all of the usual suspects are to be found, where else, in First and Last. There's a vertically challenged but physically strong Lt. Commander all but dancing attendance on our beloved Acting, but who are we kidding here, CMO. And yes, two of those damned Minuteman, Paz and Phillip, ensconced in a corner table deep into conversation.

Saint-Cloud nods to Raine as he grabs the coffee carefully in his massive hand, ignoring Phillip's refusal for the caffeinated goodness. "Well I would hope so. I wouldn't know what to do if a tree hated me," he admits. He turns around and sets the coffee down, daintily but still sloshing it a bit. He always seems to move with deliberation, as if his minute height coupled with his broadness makes him a bit clumsy. "Of course, I will probably be in your sickbay soon enough. We need to do my onboard physical.. and go over my requirements," he tells her. The Littlest Lt Cmdr smiles at Phillip. "I would /advise/ you sober up. I haven't had a chance to cull.. I mean restructure.. tactical yet so you never know when they will screw up and call you to the deck for a flight."

"Gonna give you a really simple choice, Iceblade." Paz drawls simply. "You can drink the coffee and sober up fairly easily…wake up tomorrow with a little hangover that a couple of aspirins'll knock out," she says, nodding to the coffee cup. "Or, you can play it my way, which is drink yourself stupid tonight, stagger down to med bay for alcohol neutralizers and spend fifteen minutes in the head taking the kind of shit you've only had nightmares about. Your call, kiddo…."

Phillip looks between the coffee and the open bottle of beer. He makes a go for the beer but his hand passes it and picks up one of the two empty ones. He stands up a bit and prepares to throw the beer bottle, "Unh…it probably wouldn't make a difference anyway." At the last second Ice turns and throws the beer bottle. It barely misses the nearby hole for the garbarge chute, crashing as it slams on the back wall. Iceblade then sits back down and looks at Paz.

Raine tilts her head, "I don't think they really hate anyone unless you try to use them for tinder." She offers a little smile. She nods, "That's fine. Just come down whenever you like," She offers to Saint-Cloud. Then a frown at what's going on with Phillip, "That's not true and you know it. I prefer not to have to herd drunken pilots then clean up the head after them," She frowns and folds her arms. She winces as the bottle hits the wall. There's a few glares. "I'll clean that up, don't worry," She waves a hand and goes to get a broom.

Saint-Cloud sighs and steps back, letting Paz deal with this.

"Stand fast, doc." Paz calls, motioning to Raine. "No need for that," she says firmly. "Okay, Second Lieutenant, you've got about ten seconds to explain to me what you're on about, and, heh, hey, guess what?" she grins malevolently. "Eight of them are gone. So, c'mon, give it up. What's the prob? How can I help?"

"Since I've been out of the Med-bay, I've taken on extra search patrols. As many as the CO will allow me, but there is not a sign of that Fralthi. It likes it escaped into an asteroid field or something." Iceblade looks down again then back up, "Other day when…when those destroyers….no…not those destroyers…those parents, those sisters, those BROTHERS…God where does all of this end…then I hear from my brother in Vega…." Iceblade just shakes his head and loses his voice.

Saint-Cloud suddenly frowns and makes a face of.. not pity but sympathy.

"Are you sure?" Raine looks concerned. Glass shards tend to make for more patients. She looks sympathetic once Iceman spills his story. "Oh… I'm sorry," She whispers. She lingers near Saint-Cloud for now, eyes wide.

Paz's reaction is simple, first, she gives Phillip a slap to the face that's like to leave a handprint, then she pulls him close to her shoulder, hugging him tightly. "I know, Ice, I know…..But we can't dwell on it, can we? Doesn't make it any better, does it? We gotta learn from it. We gotta learn from it and be stronger. It hurts, it always does…"

Phillip is totally shocked by the slap and the hug. In fact, he is right now totally dazed. When Paz lets go, he falls right back into his seat and looks practically unconscious but his eyes are open. A second later, he wakes from his near blackout and shakes his head.

Saint-Cloud doesn't know HOW to react to that. SO he doesn't. He just looks to Raine and shrugs. "I think.. it is better I didn't see that," he says. "So I think I will go find my little corner of officer's country and send off my correspondence before I hit my rack. The kids and spouses will want to know if I made it safely." He drains his drink and picks up his small duffle. "Tomorrow, then, doctor?"

Raine fails her will save and is stunned briefly. Her jaw falls open. "Um. I'll leave them some coffee, clean that glass and get back to my bonsai-cave…" She rubs the back of her head. A smile to Saint-Cloud. "Okay. Kids and spouses?" Her eyes widen a bit. "That sounds pretty tough. I think my family's happy when they don't get the 'Raine just proved natural selection works. PS- here's her stuff' letter," She notes. "That sounds fine. I'll be available. Welcome aboard sir." Nodnod.

"Look at me, Ice," Paz says, her coal-black eyes trying to meet his. "You can, and will, drive yourself crazy with 'woulda, coulda, shoulda.'" she says flatly. "We lost the other night, and we lost people. I know that. But you can't kick yourself over it, okay?" she adds. "It's just _war_. You can't control or predict it. All you can do is learn from it. So harden your heart, _Iceblade_," she says, giving the man's frigid call sign particular emphasis. "And buck up. It seems impossible, you should've seen me when Jolly bought it," she sighs, shaking her head a little at her own remembered sorrow. "But you can, and you have to. Otherwise, you're just setting yourself up to follow them, and they wouldn't want that."

Iceblade's eyes narrow and he turns his head and points through the window where the TCS Honour can be seen - the light carrier that was the barely saved the other day. The fear and uncertainty in Phillip's voice have now been replaced by unadulterated rage and sheer hatred and he begins speaking loudly so everybody else can hear, "My brother was serving onboard one of those in Vega a week ago. Now he's not cause it was blown to hell by a surprise Kilrathi strike." Iceblade drops his arm and turns back to Paz. "From what I've gathered, the colony they were trying to protect when this fleet attacked is now gone. Despite my brother's and other pilots' best efforts, the colony was destroyed. Now he and only a handful of almost 40 pilots are alive, rescued by the simple luck of reinforcements arriving when they did." A pause as Iceblade staggers a bit while standing up. He looks around as he speaks, "MORE LIVES FOR A WAR that will no doubt end in the COMPLETE GENOcide of one race over the other, and we are all..right..fucking..in the middle of it!!" When Iceblade finishes his expression betrays a clear urge to kill something…probably something with fur that goes meow, rarr, or Kilrathi-speak. Iceblade, though essentially correct given the known nature of Kilrathi, Iceblade has clearly lost all of his cool and probably needs to release it for him to regain the focus he had.

Saint-Cloud smirks over his shoulder as he moseys towards the door. "It isn't as tough as you may think. I have five kids, personally and 6 more creche-children. Three of /mine/ with my wives in our creche-marriage back on Dusk and two with two of my ex-wives off of Dusk. Well.. I think they are both my ex-wives.." he looks at his watch. "Yeah. The five year marriage contract on the last one ran out a week ago.. Thank the goddess." he shakes his head. "It may get tougher when they start going to college but not as hard as it was for MY parents. Their marriage group was larger than mine. And the number of relations OUTSIDE the group…?" he chuckles at the thought. Finally he looks at Paz and Phillip one last time… Then walks out.

Raine is watching, feeling the intensity of the moment. She offers quietly, "We do have a gym and a pool. I'd suggest working out a bit there or in the sims," she rubs the back of her head. "And being sure to rest as well, okay?" She offers to Iceblade and Paz. Raine scoops up her tree. She smiles at Saint-Cloud, "Really? That sounds really different. I've never heard of this sort off arrangement so maybe I'm just not well informed." But if you don't know better, well- it works out. "Interesting though. Be well then," She waves at the shorter man and will start away herself. "I am sure they will be just fine. They have good parents I think." Beam. She believes! Either way, tree and Raine have duties to do.

Paz lets Phillip go to roar at the heavens for all of their random injustice, sipping at her beer thoughtfully as she waits for him to boil down. "You finished?" she asks Phillip in a tone that seems carved out of ice. "You done? No, no, don't answer until you're certain," she adds almost mockingly. "Yes? Then sit the _fuck_ down and make like a soldier," she snarls, impatience coloring her tone. "I'm not mocking you, Bradford," she says with a little more warmth to her voice. "And I am deeply sorry for your loss," she adds sincerely. "But that's come and gone, now. And if you take that shit up into the cockpit with you, you will be _DEAD_ when the next fight is over," she says firmly. "Jettison your personal baggage, Bradford. All it can do is slow you down, futz up your thinking and make you combat ineffective. There's a time and a place for hatred….the time is on-mission, the place is on-target….past that, let it go…"

Phillip nods at Raine and looks at Paz. He picks the coffee and downs it without stopping. He then sits down clearly still in a bad way and just looks at the floor breathing through his mouth.

Raine nods back at Phillip, "I'll clean up the glass or get the support crew. You really should look into gym or talking to one of the chaplains/counselors, okay? We care about you," she smiles. "Even in your worst moments. But Miss Paz is right, you need to clear your head or you'll get hurt out there. Either way, thank you both. Am glad to see you." She smiles, waves and heads on out.
"Something on your mind, Iceblade?" Paz inquires, her tone cool and collected.

Phillip, still very much hyped up and ready to tear through some flesh, hears Raine's comment and latches onto it just like he latched onto a certain "meow" long ago. Phillip quietly whispers, almost under his breath, "gym." It is almost as if a tiny sliver of his being managed to clear from the fog of emotion to eek out the answer on how to cure this situation.

"Okay….let's go to the gym," Paz replies simply. "You looking for a workout or something else?" she asks as she stands.

Phillip stands up and leaves the room totally silent. As he does so, the bartender goes about cleaning up the broken glass. On the side of his neck is a scar that looks like it resulted from a beer bottle, probably tossed when the thrower was drunk and didn't realize the bartender was between him and the garbage chute. Obviously, he learned this lesson well, until the glass-throwing drunkard has left the room, do not go about cleaning up the glass. You might just find yourself in the crossfire.


Designed to fit a maximum of facilities in a minimum of space, the Fitness Center of the Majestic is an oddly crowded room. Entrance from the Crew Services deck actually leads to the second level of the facility, with ramps to left and right leading down to the floor. Ringing the sizeable room at the height of the second level is a four lane running track. Set under the running track around the perimeter of the room are a number of weight machines, exercise bikes, a set of punching bags, and numerous other types of stationary equipment. The center of the room is relatively more open, containing a boxing ring and a number of mats suitable for either gymnastics or martial arts. Locker rooms are set into the fore bulkhead, with a sign by the doors indicating that access to the facility's pool is through the lockers.

Paz follows Phillip to the gym in icy silence. If he's looking for a fight, a glance back at her expression will make it very clear he'll find one if he pushes things.

Phillip, upon entering the gym, heads down to the lower level towards a punching bag, which has a matt on the ground around it. The gym, which is actually empty, is currently fairly dark with a lighting level reminiscent of early dawn. The aforementioned bag has amusingly enough been painted with a full-sized picture of Kilrathi onto it. The paint, however, is crumbling off due to excessive abuse. No surprise there. Upon the sight of it, Iceblade races at it and begins to pummel the bag as hard, viscously and recklessly as possible.

Paz follows Phillip down, slowing her pace so that by the time Phillip's down there kicking the stuffing out of the faux Kilrathi, she's halfway down the stairs. "I heard you liked it rough, Iceblade," she comments acidly. "But I didn't know you beat yourself off."

Phillip ignores the comment from Paz and continues his assault. The bag is taking quite a pounding, but it was meant for this kind of abuse. As much force that is going into the bag, the mass of it prevents it from moving very far. Now, however, Iceblade is starting to throw in kicks with his punches and even he knees the Kilrathi a few times. Damn he is way pissed. Phillip's anger is becoming far more focused and as a result, the forces of his attack are starting to be directed more continuously in one general location. The bag is starting to get pushed backward more and more and thereby pushing towards Phillip more and more with ever increasing force. Iceblade's assault, though, continues unabated, so the bag is unable to complete its forward swing and never actually returns to the vertical position.

Paz watches for a long moment before she ambles down the stairs, stopping just after the last of them. "Wow, you're….really kicking some ass now," she comments, chuckling softly, though warily keeping her distance. Crazy people are unpredictable and Phillip is clearly starting to fall into said category.

Phillip keeps attacking but is starting to slow down. Punches start becoming fewer, but they are harder hitting. One very significant punch goes in, and the bag is forced backward to its greatest extent. Then as it returns to Phillip, he swings hard, but ends up missing with his body going forward. The bag pushes forth right into Iceblade's shoulder resulting in a rather hard hit that knocks Phillip to the mat several feet backward. Iceblade is now on his back and breathing hard. His face shows exhaustion from the exercise yet no anger.

Paz starts to move to help the man, but checks herself. Whatever battle he's fighting is clearly in his head, and unless she sees blood or evidence of real trauma, she's not about to make it hers. Not with a full schedule of CAPs to fly "You okay?" she asks, with something approaching compassion, without actually being it, in her tone.

Iceblade catches his breathe after a minute of heavy breathing. Upon which, he tilts his head up to look at the still swinging bag, which is almost returning to a steady state. Paint where Phillip was hitting the most and the hardest has been almost completely transferred to his hands, which he now looks at before returning his gaze at the faux-rathi. At the sight of the near-pelvisless Kilrathi, Phillip starts laughing, firstly mildly then hysterically. His head is now back on the matt.

The lunatic is on the mat…..The lunatic is on the mat… Paz advances towards Phillip warily, keeping her hands up and her feet poised to make a quick getaway should it be needed. Inhuman rage followed by disassociated laughter…..Yeah….That's a good sign. "Lieutenant Bradford?" she asks, just loud enough to be heard.

Phillip looks up at Paz and then points to the faux-rathi while saying through less hysterical laughter, "Look, I CAT-strated it."

"Eh….okay…" Paz replies, letting her 'okay' trail out just long enough to express her bewilderment and mounting alarm. "Is this the point when you tell me what the hell you're going on about, or am I supposed to guess?" she asks. "Note to self, never follow crazy drunks into the gym," she whispers.

Starting to calm now, he gets up into a half-sitted position with most of his weight on his right arm. He then says, "Woah, that was actually rather helpful. I really need to do this more often." He looks down for a second, then back up, "And a far better method to releasing my rage then what I did before."

"So, you're sane now?" Paz asks, taking a half step back as the man sits up and coming to something near a fighting stance she learned in Basic. "Or do I see if Doc Raine's got a spare rubber room?"

"Uh, sane…uh yeah…well was I ever not sane?" Iceblade says this with a rather quizzical look.

"About the time you started kicking the shit out of the stuffed animal, then started giggling your head off about it." Paz replies, arcing up an eyebrow quizzically. "I mean, me, I get that pissed off, I either pick a fight with somebody or just get drunk and listen to Black Sabbath."

"Ah oh that," Iceblade says before giving a quick chuckle. "Well, I guess you now know why I don't drink much…I kind of lose control and anything cat-like around me tends to die as a result."

"Yeah, I see," Paz replies simply, bobbing her head. "Do I need to worry about you?" she asks, colorlessly. "Because if I do, your ass is on the first thing smoking back to where ever you came from. I've got real pull with the WinCo," she states flatly. "We lost tonight, Iceblade. We're going to lose again," she continues with a sigh. "Not saying you oughta like it, but if it's going to drive you this crazy, you need to find another squadron. There's _crazy_, and there's _psychotic_. What you just showed me was more the latter."

Then Iceblade adds before responding, "Well, today was a little different than usual." Phillip's mood gets a little more somber. "The events of the last few days have really hit me too close to home. I was always very close to my brothers and finding out I nearly lost my other brother just pushed me to the edge. Getting drunk threw me off it." Iceblade concludes, "The war just got to me is all." Iceblade then perks up a bit with a slight grin and responds jokingly with a few sporadic chuckles, "I should be perfectly fine as long as you keep me from getting drunk."

"Okay…so, what's the deal here?" Paz asks simply. "I don't have time to draw some big story outta you bit by bit, so just tell me now," she adds firmly. "Because, right now, I'm not sure if I wanna be in the same airspace as you."

Iceblade sighs and looks down before responding in a more serious tone, "The near loss of one brother you know about, but I suppose you will want more. Well years ago, I had another brother who actually was killed by the Kilrathi." Iceblade now looks up at Paz, "Ah you might want to sit down for this, it's not a quick story." Iceblade then sits up fully and crosses his legs Indian-style.

Paz gives a little bob of her head and settles down opposite the man, assuming the same cross-legged position as he. "Okay….I'm listening."

"Well, about 6 years ago to the day almost, my older brother was serving in the TCN onboard an Exeter class destroyer. His first assignment, in fact, and he had just graduated from officer school." Iceblade gives a sigh and brings his hand to his head after tilting his head down a little. "It…well..it was dest.." another sigh.

"The Fuzzy Wuzzies destroyed it." Paz replies, frowning a little and nodding. "And your brother was….KIA?" she asks, again with a note of something approaching compassion in her tone. God knows, she's lost enough of her loved ones to the bastards.

Iceblade responds, "Yes, but the ship was actually patrolling an out of the way system in Vega when the Kilrathi attacked. It and the system didn't stand a chance from it. Shortly after we received news of the loss of the people there, we heard about Michael's fate. They…they..they said that the ship was destroyed with no escape pods detected or so the /official/ information goes."

"Ah…" Paz breathes, nodding faintly as the last pieces of the puzzle fall into place. "You thought Michael was aboard that ship." she says. "And if we could catch her, you could get him back."

Iceblade gives another sigh, "No, the actual events are far more definite and gruesome. I later found out that the ship was not destroyed but obliterated with all escape pods intact. However, what they found inside was…was.." Iceblade just looks down, unable to explain in words what was found there.

"Was?" Paz prompts gently, scooting a little closer to Phillip until she's able to reach her arm out and _almost_ touch his shoulder….or punch him square in his potentially psychotic, vengeance-driven jaw…..which ever…

Iceblade just whispers one word, "Butchered."

Paz doesn't reply audibly, not at first, just scoots closer until her hand finds Phillip's shoulder and gives it a very gentle squeeze.

"I…I found this last bit of information when my brother returned on leave. My parents still don't know this, but I probably took it worse than they would have. I just…I lost it. I mopped around and cried, it was just too much. Then I went out one night, got drunk, and when I was walking home, I heard somethi…" Iceblade stops unsure if he really should release this next piece of information.

Paz nods and squeezes again. "I'm listening." she replies quietly.

"I uh…well I heard a meow. It was cat…a dirty, flea-bitten cat in a side alley." Iceblade says with a slight tinge of rage towards the end. He pauses to calm himself. "I, well, was very drunk, but in that fog, my mind just latched on the sound. I followed it and found this cat, but it looked far meaner and far more Kilrathi like than it really was. I…well I…" Iceblade pauses to choice his words carefully. "Well I killed it."

"I see." Paz says, giving another squeeze to Phillip's shoulder. "I'm going to tell you something, and you're not gonna wanna listen to me because, well, you're still in mourning," she sighs, voice trailing off as her eyes start to well with a few unshed tears. "_Everybody_ in this squadron has lost somebody close to them," she says, giving another squeeze, but firmer, less reassuring and more informative. "Jolly…our last CO…he was like a father to me.." she continues, gulping down a sob before it can sound. "He died on a CAP and I didn't find out about it until eight hours after the fact," she continues, face settling into a grim mask. "I was the one who had to send word to his wife…" she adds, before catching her breath again, throat working convulsively. "She was like our dorm mother or something," she chuckles, shaking her head sadly. "And I got to tell her that her husband was _dead_," she finishes, voice taking on a flat, iron tone.

Iceblade nods and returns the squeeze. "I can't imagine what that must have been like. But for me, the loss was more profound, My…well my behavior changed after that night, I became more closed off. To most, it seemed as if I had moved on, or was just putting on a brave face. Always putting on a smile or just remaining emotionally balanced. Those that knew me, though, could tell I had erected a barrier. Biggest change came when I altered my career drastically." Iceblade looks to Paz, somewhat askance and a little less somber, "I bet you never realized that I wanted to be anything but a pilot, but I did. I was actually going to be a chemist. Do research and not even in biowarfare."

"Heh, you mean like passing out rubbers and shit?""

Iceblade looks a little confused, "huh? no from where I'm from Chemists are individuals who do work in the field of Chemistry from BSs to PhDs are all chemists." Iceblade then finishes up his life's story, "Anyway, in one year's time, I finished my degree, but I also prepared myself mentally and physically to join the TCSF to kill Kats. Before, I could care less about the Kilrathi, now my life's ambition to see Kilrah obliterated." Iceblade ends with some tinges of anger (though not rage) and it is more for effect than felt emotion.

"Hee, yeah I am really tired too… and I feel oddly sober, I think I sweated the rest of the alcohol." Iceblade then gets up and joins Paz out of the gym to return to the Powderkeg.