Characters: Dee & Kara
Prompt: The two are forced to join forces for a common good. Season 4 spec.? (optional)
Things You Don't Want: character death, noncon
title: Touched by the Sun
characters: Kara Thrace, Anastasia Dualla
spoilers: through season three finale; some speculation for season four
beta-readers: The very-helpful daybreak777 and jashyr. All remaining errors are mine.
word count: 1271
note: title and theme
note #2: yes, there really is a binary star called Mizar
This was familiar, thought Dee. Starbuck in hack. Though now it was Kara, not Starbuck or even Captain Thrace. Gods help them all if she wasn't actually Kara, if Kara Thrace was really a cylon.
Dee kept a firm grip on the roll of maps she was carrying. The marine next to her held scrolls; they both had to show them to the officer on duty at the door before they were allowed to enter. Kara was seated on her cot, cross-legged, face calm. Different from the last time Dee had seen her in CIC, shrieking about how they were heading the wrong direction. That was when the Admiral had put her in the brig again.
Kara looked up and smiled tiredly when she entered. "Hi, Dee. Come to visit the whack-job?"
"The Old Man sent me. He thought maybe we could look over some stuff and map out some coordinates to look for Earth."
"I thought Roslin put an end to that."
Dee saw the question in Kara's face; President Roslin was ready to put her in the airlock right now, if the Admiral would allow it. "The President's not in the loop right now." She grabbed the wobbly folding table from the middle of the room and pulled it closer to the cot. Dumping her armful of papers there, she then took the scrolls from the marine.
"That'll do, thanks. Just wait for me outside," Dee told him. He saluted and went back out the door. He would easily be able to listen to them in this barred cell but Dee wasn't complaining. Better the brig than the cell designed for keeping cylons--it always made her a bit claustrophobic.
"And the scriptures?" asked Kara.
"The Admiral thinks that President Roslin might be more willing to listen if we can find ties to the prophecies."
Kara looked amused and skeptical. " Gods, I hope you're better at reading them than I am."
"I'm from Sagitarron."
"Right." She glanced at the maps again and started to say something, then stopped.
"I just... I don't know if I can do this."
"Figure out where to go just by looking at maps and using a feeling." Her tone was sarcastic but she looked uncertain. Starbuck unsure--it was incongruent.
"Well, I suggest you try."
Kara stared at the pile of charts and scrolls. "Frak," she muttered.
Dee felt an obligation to encourage her--she resented the sensation, but she went ahead. "The Admiral believes you can do this, and he wants a reason to keep you out of the airlock. He loves you. So don't screw this up." She tried to keep her tone matter-of-fact.
Kara stared at her for a moment, then looked down. "Okay, then." She looked at the pile of charts. "We have to start close to the Ion Nebula."
Dee picked up the first roll from the pile. "This is the chart you want."
"You remember where we were then?"
It really wasn't a question but she answered anyway. "You on the floor in the CIC yelling that we were going the wrong way? It was rather memorable, yes."
"I guess it was." Kara unrolled the map and started looking at it.
Dee wasn't sure what to do next--this was Kara's job, showing how to get to Earth. She was here to help, but that wasn't much of a job description. So she waited and watched while Kara focused at the map like it might hold some fantastic clue. The officer outside the bars glared at them, as if waiting to catch them doing something illegal. They sat for a few minutes, Kara's index finger tracing the fleet's former position on the map to various coordinates, circling back and forth. Suddenly she stopped.
"This is where we head next." She was pointing to a binary star system close to the edge of the astronomical chart.
Dee looked at the name. "Mizar?"
"Yeah. What the frak kind of name is that?"
"Hm. It says here that it means the groin." Dee smiled at Kara's burst of raucous laughter. "Mizar A and Mizar B. Not stunningly original."
Kara glanced back at her, a grin on her face. "Maybe they used up all their creativity naming the star 'groin.'" She looked relaxed again, fingers still.
"Now what we need to do is find something in the prophecies that will convince President Roslin that this is the right path," said Dee.
She reached for the scrolls but Kara reached over and touched her hand before she could unroll them. "Look for the passage about two sages."
Dee raised an eyebrow. "Okay."
"It's in Pythia." Kara appeared reluctant to say anything else, so Dee used the indices to search for the word sage, then found the passage that Kara referenced.
"The darkness was dispelled by two fiery sages, and the people sojourned in the light for a time. Their voyage unhindered by those who sought their destruction, the people turned to the sages for direction, and their pleas did not go unanswered."
Dee didn't know how Kara knew of this verse; she didn't know if Kara believed it was about them and their travels. What she did know was that the President would find this precise enough to fit their situation and it could be what they needed to persuade her.
"So, what about you?" Something in Kara's tone made Dee turn to look at her.
"What do you mean?"
"You said the Admiral believes in me, but do you think I know the way to Earth?"
"Yes." So much more could be said, including doubts, but Dee didn't feel like explaining herself.
She sighed. "Because you were touched by the sun."
"It's an expression. It means..."
"I know what it means," Kara interrupted. "It means crazy."
"Well, on Sagittaron they used it for someone who was destined to do great things." Or terrible things. Sometimes great things were terrible as well.
Kara leaned on the cot, looking doubtful but intrigued. "So who else was touched by the sun?"
"Kataris. Alexandros. Delphyne Marcellus."
"That's rather illustrious company."
"Though they didn't exactly have happy endings, did they?"
"Well, you already had one ending, maybe you'll have a better one the second time around."
She didn't know how Kara would react to that statement--Starbuck from before might have laughed, or slugged her. Instead Kara gave her a lopsided, wistful smile. "Maybe so."
Dee wished that better end for Kara, even if she wouldn't believe it from her. The moment Kara had returned with her dramatic statement about taking them to Earth Dee had known. Kara was touched by the sun. It explained so much: how no one could see anything or anyone beyond her, how she spiraled into her own destructive patterns. Kara's return was when Dee finally gave up being jealous of what Kara had, what Dee had wanted... because life had taught her that those who were touched by the sun so often burned away.
Long ago Dee had given up on religion, on the mysticism and superstitions of the life she'd known growing up. She hated being irrational, but sometimes there wasn't any other choice. If they got to Earth maybe she would find that part of herself that used to be called Ana, not Dee. Maybe Kara would be Kara, not Captain Thrace or Starbuck or frakked-up wife or Apollo's lover. Lee could be himself, not Romo's lackey. The Admiral could finally get some rest.
"What's it like?"
Kara's face had a genuine smile with a hint of tears. "It's beautiful."