Dec 16, 2019 4:58 AM
Dicehoarder's Sandra meets Rockeye's Nick and Walta
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"It's ok, is there anything I can do to make you more comfortable?"

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"Tell me how everyone does something regrettable once in a while? How wanting something bad isn't bad if you don't do it? Heh. I'll convince myself at this rate."

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"We all do. I once told my best friend that I loved her, but she didn't swing that way. We got over it, but it still hurts."

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"I've gone over this in my head enough that I'm not actually sure I'm remembering it all right, exact words and stuff. Uh. I like Captain Vauners. I don't know if it's love but I definitely like him. One day we were doing something in the workshop - boiler or something, I don't know, but we were close and he'd just said something really clever so I kissed him. And then - well either he didn't act like he was against it or I didn't notice - I think he said 'we'll talk about this later'. I maybe wasn't thinking straight. I..." She goes redder than she already was. "I. Tried to. Sleep with him that night and we shouted at each other a bit and he just - said that it was a bad idea and sent me back to my own room. If he's trying to make me leave now... Maybe I should."

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Oof, that's one doozy of a situation right there. "Is that really what you want? If you do leave, it should be on your own terms, not because he wants you to. It has to be right for you. I understand that this might make you feel uncomfortable, but only you know if you can live with that." She then pauses and smiles comfortingly. 

"What do you want?"

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"I don't know. I want to- He got me out of the slums. I don't know what I'd do if I left this ship. He's the only... I don't know. He's been pretending it never happened. I'm going to keep... Wanting him, but I think I can not do anything about it and be content."

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"You're strong, you'd find something to do, it's a big world out there. But, if you do want to say, you said it yourself. He's pretending it didn't happen, he's trying to ignore the situation until it goes away. But it happened and I think you need to confront him on that. Let him know that you regret what you did, but that you want to stay. Put the ball in his court, you shouldn't be the only one having to decide this."

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"I think I was the one in the wrong, there... If he wants to ignore it and let the status quo keep... Agh, I dunno what I'm hoping for here. Don't know if confronting him will make it better or worse. If this was a novel he'd save my life from pirates one day and realize how sad he'd be without me but life is not a novel, damn it."

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"Even if you were in the wrong, it doesn't diffuse responsibility. There's still a power structure here, he's your mentor and captain, he has a duty to actually manage interpersonal problems. That's what being in charge is all about. It means doing uncomfortable things for the sake of the ship and it's crew, the fact that Nick doesn't seem to get this concerns me greatly."

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"Mm. I think Nick never really intended to be a captain of a crew. He was planning to run the ship by himself before I butted in, being clever and needing a way out of town."

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"Intent only matters so much. I didn't intend to be in this situation, but I am, so I have a responsibility to try to make the best choice possible. So do you, and so does Nick. Except Nick made the choice to bring you on, no one forced him. His choice, he could have turned you down, but he didn't. Maybe you were manipulative, maybe you weren't, I don't know. What I know is that there is a problem now, and like it or not, he has responsibility. And even if you had equal power, responsibility must be shared equally."

She takes a deep breath, focusing her thoughts.

"This isn't just your responsibility, that's the rub, even when we mess up, sometimes other people have to help us smooth out the mess. Someday you'll have to do the same for someone else. It's how the world works."

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Sigh. "Fiiine. Being a responsible adult and forcing Nick to do the same thing it is."

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When did Sandra become the one convincing people to be responsible? It baffles her, when did she grow up?

"You're making the right decision." Then she'll let Walta and Nick have some privacy. She hasn't done any journaling in a while, that might be a good idea.

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"Captain, we need to talk about that day. The day I kissed you."

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"I suppose we probably should. I'm guessing our guest put you up to this? No matter, it's for the best. I... Am still of the opinion that us getting involved is a bad plan."

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"But why? Because it will end in tears and stress? I don't think so. We're friends, even with this thing we are more friendly and work well together than most crews."

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"You're an excellent worker. Clever and nimble and dedicated. But if we get romantic it's a fundamentally different thing now. We would lose what we have now."

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"If you want to keep what we have now, then why are you trying to push me away? And - I did the same thing, just ignoring it, but... Deeps know it sucks and you're supposed to be the mature one, Captain."

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"I take financial responsibility for provisions and maintenance and your time, and I work longer hours on harder tasks than you even recently. I think I'm plenty responsible."

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"There's more than one kind of responsibility. Are you... I mean, I'm guessing you don't have too much practice working with other people. You were alone when I made that pulley for you. You never socialize much when we make port, you just go to the workshop."

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"You have reached the heart of the matter. I stay to myself and mind my own business. I run my ship without getting involved in social mess."

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"That social mess is life. You enjoy teaching me, I can tell. That's social. You enjoy wheeling and dealing, that's at least a little bit social..."

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Nick sighs and rubs his forehead.

 

"...I know it's a little hypocritical to say this to you, but I did not have an easy childhood. I don't want to get into the details, but I felt like a thing that exists to do chores and parrot my father's beliefs, not a child. There is a voice that says everyone in the world is set to do the same thing again."

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Ohh that's terrible. "I really want to hug you right now, Captain. Platonically. We were dirt poor and my folks weren't the best, but you sound like you barely had parents at all."

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"...If you insist, I will hug."

She does. 

The hug ends soon enough. Nick sighs.

"Getting to the heart of the matter indeed."

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