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28 October 2011 @ 07:34 am
the glitter of possibilities  
For ar_drabbles challenge #83: Private pursuits. Spoilers (really? WHo's reading this fic who hasn't seen the whole series?) for Flight of the Phoenix.

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She disliked politics, but had learned its lessons well. Know your opponent. Negotiate from a position of strength.
 
When she found himself alone in his quarters she took a good look around. It wasn't snooping; her interest wasn't personal. She was in a quest to save what was left of humanity and had to know more about her partner in this fight. She knew the commander, but here in his quarters she could finally sense the man -- photos of family, books, a half-built model ship. In the corner, boxing gloves hung over a hook.
 
She had always admired people who made time for hobbies, amazed at the excess of passions which flowed out onto trivial pursuits. Had she ever had any? She supposed not, not in a long time. All her passions had been consumed by her work and the rest squandered in meaningless sex, in nights alone with a bottle of wine and take-away sushi, in sitting by the edge of the fountain in the park and trying to forget.
 
She picked up the book. Dark Day. It always was, wasn't it?
 
He startled her when he walked in like he owned the place. He did.
 
"I wanted to return this," she told him, handing him back his book.
 
"This was a gift."
 
And it was -- a few brief moments each day in which she could pretend to be the kind of person who had hobbies, a private life, time for passions. But with all his good intentions, he couldn't give her that, not even as a gift. He couldn't fold up her life, her mission and her disease, in his pocket and spread a new life, with family and friends, with a library and a home, like a blanket around her to warm her chill bones.
 
 
 
akachankami: ar heartakachankami on October 28th, 2011 06:00 am (UTC)
hello speedy!
flight of the phoenix ;_; *hugs laura*
He couldn't fold up her life, her mission and her disease, in his pocket and spread a new life, with family and friends, with a library and a home, like a blanket around her to warm her chill bones.
this is "spoilers for all seasons!!!" =P
it's so sad she is probably expecting him to try and fail ç_ç *sigh*
She had always admired people who made time for hobbies, amazed at the excess of passions which flowed out onto trivial pursuits. Had she ever had any? She supposed not, not in a long time. All her passions had been consumed by her work and the rest squandered in meaningless sex, in nights alone with a bottle of wine and take-away sushi, in sitting by the edge of the fountain in the park and trying to forget.
=( a sad picture you paint but it's still my fav paragraph ♥ beautiful choice of words!
frakcancer: mary quotefrakcancer on October 30th, 2011 07:06 am (UTC)
it's so sad she is probably expecting him to try and fail

For a very ling time, hasn't that been what everyone in her life has done, tried and failed, if they've even bothered trying?
sln1sln1 on October 28th, 2011 10:54 am (UTC)
There's a sense of hollowness in this, of the emptiness of Laura's life after the loss of her family when she was unfulfilled in both her professional and personal life.

Then, even when she finds a professional purpose, in circumstances which preclude any serious chance of leisure time, there's still something missing, a deficiency she's aware of and even finds highlighted in Bill's quarters where the the trappings of his job rub shoulders with the personal aspects of his life. And now, when there just might be someone who is willing to reach out to her, to start to find ways to fill that void in her life, it's too late because her life is ending.

You really picked up on the mood of that scene from Flight of the Phoenix, when the simple gesture of returning a book held so much meaning, spoke of so much lost potential, so much loss. Thank you
frakcancer: mary quotefrakcancer on October 30th, 2011 07:57 am (UTC)
There's a sense of hollowness in this

What I love about your reviews is that you take everything I was trying to work through in fic and bring it into focus. I was thinking "brittle," but you're right -- it's hollow, because if it broke, it wouldn't shatter, it would reveal an empty center that did not hold.
k_d_456_345_ak_d_456_345_a on October 28th, 2011 01:02 pm (UTC)
In the first paragraph, I thought you were describing the scene when he first gives her the book, so I was surprised to see it was this one, but I guess in the overall picture that is still very early in their relationship.

I love the last paragraph--it expresses everything so well and foreshadows so elegantly those final moments when he carries her wrapped in a blanket, giving her one last gift.

It is interesting in Flight of the Phoenix that the way he draws her back in that scene is through work, his predicament with the computer virus. But it is the first recognition between that her moral support and her advice is something of value to both of them.
frakcancer: holicsfrakcancer on October 30th, 2011 11:42 am (UTC)
It is interesting in Flight of the Phoenix that the way he draws her back in that scene is through work, his predicament with the computer virus.

In the same scene where she's connecting with him on a personal level after trying so hard to keep it professional, he connects with her on a professional level after telling her for so long that that was not where her valuable input lay. Knowing what we knew then, of her approaching death, it was so bittersweet, thinking they were finally coming to appreciate each other fully just a little too late.
our little life is rounded with a sleep: defyingnormalcy on October 29th, 2011 07:34 pm (UTC)
He couldn't fold up her life, her mission and her disease, in his pocket and spread a new life, with family and friends, with a library and a home, like a blanket around her to warm her chill bones.

GUH. So heartbreaking because we all know that if there was anything that Bill wished he could do, it was this.

*sniffle*
frakcancer: Bill targetfrakcancer on October 30th, 2011 11:52 am (UTC)
So heartbreaking because we all know that if there was anything that Bill wished he could do, it was this.

Yes. THIS.
aussiegirl: the sad lookbsg_aussiegirl on November 4th, 2011 11:14 am (UTC)
She picked up the book. Dark Day. It always was, wasn't it? I love how this one line sets the tone for the entire drabble. *sniff*

He startled her when he walked in like he owned the place. He did. Okay, I'm going to be predictable again. I love this line. You could post it all over again for a 'home' challenge. I love that whole sense it gives me (in my rainbow loving way) that she was comfortable in his quarters despite her depression..