(2016-09-24) Not Quite Cornered
Not Quite Cornered
Summary: Tabitha gets lucky, finding Daxton before he heads off. She knows she's not good at this, but had to try anyway.
Date: 2016-09-24
Related: Roomie Talk
NPCs: None
Scene Runner: NA

It's early, but that's never stopped Daxton. Well, not since he was taken. Forced army practices seem to stick and he's been running for a while now. Only stopping at his job to get his check that was misplaced yesterday. He has things to buy today before heading out with Unit 23. The teen is in sweats and a faded thrift store tee. He is wearing his Ares uniform shoes though, as they're the only shoes that haven't worn out on him yet. Currently he's standing outside the Lighthouse, waiting for his manager to show up.

Keeping to old training habits is something that Tabitha has in common with Daxton, although the source and specific regimines differ. This morning, though, she convinced herself to skip most of it in favor of seeing if Daxton was still in the area. She's been coming by the lighthouse at regular intervals between checking other spots, since it's one of the places he's likely to stop at and she figures even if she doesn't run into him she could at least see if he's on the schedule or not. So now she's coming up the beach at a marathon pace on her latest visit. Maybe the fifth time's the charm.

Daxton has his phone out, but seems to be keeping aware of his surroundings. Blue eyes follow Tabs approach and he shifts in how he's leaning against the wall. Not much, but he's angled to better pouch off and leave if he needs to. Now that Tabs and Becca are roommates, there's certain uncertainty. He finishes up who ever he's texting and slips it into his pocket. And waits for Tabs to arrive.

Tabitha slows a bit as she paces up the rise towards the pizza spot's parking lot. She gives Daxton a brief upnod to acknowledge that she's spotted him spotting her looking for him. Everyone all on the same page, here? She's dressed for cooler weather than the morning is presenting, in thermals under sweats and her black knit watch cap. When she's reached a comfortable conversational distance she slows to a stop and jogs in place to keep from cooling down too fast. She eyes the duffle, then shifts her attention back to Daxton. "Rumor has it you've dropped out completely this time."

Daxton just eyes her, and the shrugs. Cause that's helpful. "I don't know." And that's even more helpful. "I'm gonna go hand out with my Unit for the weekend." he's not really made any plans beyond that. He did pick up the jab though and folds his arms as he watches the tiny girl jog in place.

Tabitha nods a bit, "Fair enough. I'm sure they think they don't seen enough of you these days." She's clearly got more to say than what's making it out of her mouth, but she's trying to practice the same restraint here that kept her from Gibbs smacking Rebecca last night. Finally she sighs and settles on, "There's a lot of wrong to go around in this whole mess. Neither one of you is handling it particularly well."

No, no they don't. And this was just a perfect opportunity to pull him away for the whole weekend. Not that they've been looking for one… Dax shifts more, letting the brick wall scratch his back. There's no direct eye contact with Tabs. He does raises an eyebrow, his expression clearly shows he doesn't agree with her statement. "Okay, sure." He's got teenager tone though on that.

Tabitha stops jogging in place and starts to do some standing stretches. She uses the activity as a way to keep from blurting out what she really thinks about the whole mess because she's really not trying to make things worse. "Why make her give you that promise in the first place, anyway? Why not ask her to promise not to go alone, to make sure she brought backup? It's her Dad." She says the last with a tone of 'who wouldn't want to do something about it?' despite the fact that neither her nor Daxton are great fans of their own patriarchal figures.

Daxton's head tilts slightly and instead of answering her questions he asks one back, "Did you know she promised me? Before you went?" His face stays fairly neutral, except for an over all tired feel.

"I offered to go check on her Dad so she wouldn't have to worry about him /and/ you, since you were off in space." Tabitha slows down her stretches a bit, still picking her words carefully although she's having ot pause every so often to keep her tone even. "She mentioned promising to be good and wait. We tried to think of innocent reasons her Dad might be out of touch, and came up blank. She talked about making a deal with the Triads and I shot that straight down. I asked her what she'd promised exactly and she said it was that she wouldn't make a play against the Triads until you got back." Here she stands up and does arm stretches so she can be facing Daxton, "So I repeated my offer to check on her Dad, with the intention that it was a recon only trip. No contact with the enemy. I even asked Sierra to come along just in case. They had a crew sitting in the house and nearby woods waiting. For a /week/ just in case someone came by. They ambushed, we did a fighting retreat and got away." She stands up with her hands behind her back in a very loose version of parade rest. "There's your answer, now mine please?"

Daxton's jaw clenches and he pushes off the wall. So there's that, she knew and tried to word play around it. "I asked her to promise me because she was a mess after the last fight she got into that I wasn't there." He had hoped to not have a sobbing girlfriend in his arms like after the train station fight. Or worse, a dead one. He impatiently glances down the road where his manager should be coming up to unlock the pizzeria and get him his check. He may just go without it. "Did you offer to go, or insist on going?" It doesn't really matter, what's one more lie, right?

Tabitha raises her eyebrows at his answer, noting the glance down the road after. When she responds she starts with his question first since she can almost taste the tone he's taking with it. "I was going there no matter what. Becca coming along was my idea because it would be easier to find the house and better to have a friendly face with me if it turned out her Dad was fine and dandy." She goes back to doing some leg stretches as actually doing something helps to keep her from pitching a fit like she very much wants to.

"I get that you're worried about her, Dax. You've lost so much, and have perfectly valid trust issues. But it works both ways if you actually want things to go well with someone. That includes things like not telling them about your… upcoming mission to space, or the site raids you're planning with your unit. If I hadn't slipped up that day in the park, would you have told Becca about Oliver's mission before leaving?"

Daxton doesn't even know what to believe anymore, so he just nods. A deep breath is taken in and held while he thinks. His mind racing is very different that someone else's. "I was going to tell her, but not until things had been hammered out." Becca would just stress out, which would just stress him out. He finally glances at Tabitha, bit doesn't quite make eye contact. He hasn't with anyone since space, "It doesn't matter now."

"So you can worry about her but she's not allowed to know anything that would make her worry? That's not how this works. That's not how it works in any kind of relationship, not just with someone who loves you." Tabitha bites her lip before she drops any kind of ultimatum statement like 'don't you care about her'. That's the fast track to pointlessness and she knows it. She takes a few beats to calm herself down again. She's not as good as Katrina at all this stuff.

When Daxton almost looks her in the eyes for his statement, she shifts her own head to try and actually get that full on eye contact he's been denying everyone for over a month now. "That's only true if you've made up your mind to leave her and everyone else here behind for good. And you've already said that you haven't made up your mind yet. Not caring won't make anything hurt less unless you /truly/ don't care." Her voice softens here and her attempts to make eye contact become less hunter and more concerned. "You do still care, right?"

Again that jaw tightens, some retort bitten back. He's tired of fighting with people. "That's not what I said, and you know it." And oh no, as soon as she tries, his eyes dart back down the road. Something happened between the time he got on the space pod and now. "maybe I don't care. Maybe I'm the dick everyone thinks I am." It would be easier.

"There's no 'maybe' in this. It's not an opt-in/opt-out deal. You either care or you don't. To me, maybe just means you care but can't put the why of it into words." Tabitha stops her stretching and paces a few steps away from Daxton. Her hands are clenched as she fights down the urge to unleash the crazy. Oh, this would be so much easier if she di… nope, not even going to think down that line. The last thing these two need is more complications. So like any good sailor when faced with a strong headwind, she changes tack to continue forward. Without turning back to face him, she lets out a long calming breath. "What happened to you out there? You've been bad and getting worse since the lot of you got back, and it's long past the point where you can say it's because of pod travel."

Daxton's whole body tenses, the clenching of Tabs hands doesn't go unnoticed. His eye narrow and he is clearly casing the area quickly, as he's not sure what her intent is anymore. "Okay. Then I'm a dick." Problem solved! He doesn't really understand what happened himself, but he knows something is different . The nightmares have changes. But he's not sharing that. Instead, Dax just shrugs, body still taunt, ready to move. He'll ask after a long pause, "What do you want Tabitha? You can't fix this."

That's the thing with Tabitha… having her back to you doesn't mean she's not looking. It just means you can't see her looking. She sees Daxton's reaction to her increasing aggrivation and forces herself to relax her muscles. "I'm not here to try and stop you from going anywhere, if that's what you're worried about. We both know I can, but hopefully we also both know that I wouldn't do something like that to you again, especially not on purpose."

When Daxton speaks up again after the long pause of them both being silent, she'll shrug. She still hasn't turned back to face him again. "I know I can't fix this. Only you and her can. What I want is for the both of you two stop running away from the problem and either put in the work to fix it yourselves, or decide /together/ that it's time to make a clean break of things. I want you both to stop being cowards, or pulling some self-martyring dramatic crap like running away to rejoin the army or locking yourself in the school for the rest of whenever."

And now she does turn back to face Daxton, so he can see that it's not anger driving her words but a much more complex blend of emotions that have her eyes red and on the edge of severe leakage. "I just want my… friends back, is that so hard to believe?"

Daxton's eyes narrow, "You over estimate your self. You could try." She'd have to touch him first. And he's not letting that ever happen again. There's defiance and something else mixed in his voice. Time Fugue isn't something he takes lightly. He pushes off the wall, "Your projecting." She is. This is different than her and Jacob. "I'm not a coward. I'm trying to step away to clear my head. You really think me going back like this is going to help? I will leave for good then."His hand twitches, it's not a fist, more just the beginnings of vibrations when he gets stressed. Those pretty blue eyes of his narrow and he turns again to look down the road, "Then be there for her. Don't try to force this."

Tabitha lets out a small snort at the 'you could try' part. This causes some of those almost-tears to splatter out. "Dax… if this was going to be any kind of fight, you would have lost as soon as you let me get within aura's reach. But like I said, that's something I'm never going to do to you ever again." Then he accuses her of projecting and she snorts again. "Projecting what? Jacob and I have been done romantically for a while now, and it was my idea. And when did I say I thought you should go back in this state? You said you were going to visit the unit for the weekend, I said it sounded like a good idea."

She shakes her head at this point, close to losing the battle against herself and not wanting that to happen in front of witnesses. So she gives Daxton a wave and starts to turn back down the road towards the beach. "It's been established that this is not what 'forcing it' looks like. And I will be there for her, because right now I'm about all she's got left after losing her family, her father, her innocence, her bloodless hands. I really hope your trip helps you, Dax. I'm starting to get sick of having to watch my friends do nothing but lose."

Well, they would just have to leave that to the roll of the dice. Dax may be faster than her aura. He cocks an eyebrow, not sure what Tabs is trying to do then, besides vent. And possibly try to lay guilt on him. So he just nods and lets her turn to leave.

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