Posts tagged carolina.
RvB: Little Darling
Her dad was never a good singer. He’d try, when she didn’t want to go to sleep, or when she got scared from going to the lab and meeting all the new, tall people. He’d try singing, because he saw her mom do it all the time. But he was never very good, and somewhere between the frightened tears and small laughter at his efforts it would turn into missing her mother’s voice, and he could never get her to stop crying for that.
There was just one song that he could ever sing that would make her smile. It was really old, and she’d never heard the original version of it. Probably so she could never hear how off her father was.
“Here comes the sun,” he would hum, and she’d sway in the rhythm. “And I say, it’s alright.”
It was the song he’d sing while her mom was walking up to the front door of their house. She’d wait patiently until he got done with it and then run to the front door and open it to see her mom, kneeling on the steps so the toddler could run up and hug her as tightly as she could.
That’s why Carolina always thought it was so cruel that there were no clouds in the sky as they buried an empty casket in silence. She spent weeks pleading with her father for him to sing the song, as if it would magically summon her mother to the front door again and it would have just been a mistake, or a cruel joke.
Every time she’d ask, her father would suddenly say he had to get to work. After two months, he didn’t have to say it anymore, he was just always at his office. He came home after she pretended to be asleep, and left the moment she woke up. The babysitter didn’t know the song. It didn’t matter, Carolina knew it had to be her father who sang it.
She’d tried to herself, every night since she was told her mom would never come back. It didn’t work.
Long after she was a child who would sing herself to sleep at night, after she became a soldier because that was the family business, soon after she proved herself good enough for a shot in her father’s program, just after she had been shipped to the Mother of Invention, one of the new agents stopped in front of her at the gym while she was running on a treadmill.
"The Beatles?" he said. She looked at him, a little confused as to why he was talking to her, let alone what he was talking about.
"Excuse me?" she said, not slowing down.
“Little darling, I feel that ice is slowly melting,” he sang quietly, and she nearly fell off the treadmill.
"Whoa," the man said, putting his hands up as if in defense. "I just recognized the song. You have good taste."
"Where did you hear it?" she demanded. "Who are you?"
"Agent New York. You were humming it." he took a step back as she powered down the machine she was still running on. "Didn’t mean to interrupt. Sorry."
Carolina stared him down a second too long, before shaking her head. “Don’t worry about it, it was nothing. I was just confused.” She turned the speed back up and resumed running, staring straight ahead and focusing on her breathing.
"Yeah, alright," the new agent said, unconvincingly, and resumed walking past her to the weight machines.
She didn’t know it, because her parents never talked about such things, but she met York in the same chair that Allison met Leonard.
York leaned himself across the counter, flagging down the bartender with all of the concentration and enthusiasm of someone who is still too sober to be at a bar at this time of night. Carolina glanced at him as his waving hand almost grazed her arm, and scooted her chair away.
Allison pushed the drunk man passed out on the bar counter off of his stool quietly. No one could have possibly seen it, though everyone heard it. The man ambled away towards the street, car keys being confiscated by the bouncer. She put both hands around her glass with a small, relieved smirk, which was immediately wiped off of her face when a man complete with glasses, a tie, and a pocket protector, sat down next to her.
"Maybe if you yell," Carolina suggested, mostly to discourage the dangerous levels of flailing that the man next to her was engaging in. "Obviously the hand motions aren’t doing anything." He didn’t turn to look at her, just muttered, "I think he’s almost going to look my way, any moment now."
"What kind of wine do you have?" the scientist asked the bartender in a low Southern accent, while Allison tried not to stare at this caricature of a man. The bartender laughed, and then pointed to the two bottled behind the counter. "One white, one red," the guy said, "which one would you like?" Allison could swear she could hear the eye roll in the over-exaggerated sigh as the scientist said "The white one, then."
Carolina finally placed both hands on the bar and lifted herself up high, yelling over York’s head at the bartender on the other side of the room, “hey! This man needs to order, for the past five minutes, and I’m worried he might flail himself into my drink if you keep ignoring him.” As she sat down, York turned to her with a frown. “I didn’t want to bother the man - oh, hey.” His voice dropped from reproachful annoyance to a slow, low whistle. “Sorry,” he said. “I didn’t really… My friends call my York.”
"Aren’t you supposed to ask to be my derivative, or something," Allison finally said, sipping her beer straight from the bottle. Leonard looked at her, sipping at his wine. "Right. And then you’ll pretend you know what it means, and laugh. Or own up that you don’t, and laugh. I think I’ll just sip on this, thank you." Allison laughed, her head tilting to get a good look at the man next to her. "What if I just told you where I lived, and that I’d be heading there in about ten minutes?" Leonard raised an eyebrow at her, put his glass down, and leaned his elbows on the bar, pulling himself up towards her. "I wouldn’t believe you."
For a moment, she considered giving him a fake name. Carol, or Lina, or, as she sometimes said, Allison. “Carolina,” she finally said, mostly because she noticed the metal tags hanging from his neck. York took out a lighter and a cigarette from his pocket, and she instinctively reached for her pack as well. “Seems we share a vice,” he remarked with a grin. She sized him up, and made the connection. York. New York. Everyone assigned to the new project had just been given a month of leave before shipping out. Of course they sent them all to the same city. “You have no idea,” she said, bringing the cigarette to her lips.
Allison smiled at the answer. “Having a bad day?” Leonard looked at her, at the way she was smiling, and leaned back, saying, “that depends.” “On?” she asked, taking another drink. “On what you write on this paper,” Leonard said, taking out a neat square of white paper and a pen. Allison looked at him with that grin, the one he’d have no choice but to love, the one he’d watch on an old film recording for years to come.
York struck the lighter, cupping it with his fingers as he offered it to Carolina. She leaned her face close to the warmth and took a long drag from his flame. “Thanks,” she said as he lit his. “I don’t have much of these left,” he said conversationally after finally having placed his order. “Shipping out soon.” “Yeah,” she muttered. He put the lighter down and picked up the two beers he’d been waiting on, turning away. “Aren’t you forgetting-” she said. He turned around. “Bring it to me tomorrow night,” he yelled out, disappearing in a sea of people carrying drinks and drunk friends. She turned back to her drink, smiled, and waited another minute before picking up the lighter and flicking it open and closed.
Allison folded the piece of paper, finished off her drink, and passed it to the stranger. “Open it after I leave,” she directed, leaving a tip on the bar under the empty bottle, and walking out of the bar. Leonard watched her go, and opened the paper. “Come back tomorrow night, and wear that pocket protector - Allison.”
He was worried that it’d look like he was stalking her. Maine had grown used to the way women looked at him. As a threat.
He couldn’t blame them, knowing that he stood three times as tall and as wide as most of the ones he’d met. Knowing he didn’t smile because there usually wasn’t a reason to, so getting into an elevator next to him he could almost feel a young woman’s heart rate double. Going back to his car at night, he could see how quickly they took their steps. It never bothered him, because they were just doing what they needed to so they could feel safe. He could relate. It’s why he had these muscles, this frown, these hands that eclipsed a man’s face in a fist. Some people walk fast. Maine punches, and thinks after. Maine is confidence.
But for a while, after they’d all been introduced and the ship had lifted off towards their first as-a-team mission, he really thought he was in trouble. He was working so hard to be trustworthy and, well, not appealing, but not off-putting, either. He took the time to articulate. He smiled twice a day, on average. He was playing by the army team-building handbook.
Except fucking Carolina and her flawless ability to always, always be in the gym at the exact moment he decided to work out. A creature of habit, he spent the first week working out right after he got up, seven in the morning until ten. It was his routine planet-side. It could be his routine here.
RvB: To Have and To Farm With
"You want her to do what?" Simmons said, the first to speak after the silence that had settled upon the lovely couple’s announcement.
"Marry us!" Donut said easily.
"She’s the highest-ranked officer here," Doc said. "It’s important we stand on ceremony."
"Why can’t you just stomp on it like we always do?" Grif said. "Hell, I could marry you."
"You’re a Private Junior, I’m pretty sure that means you can’t marry people. We want you to be the ring bearer, though!" Donut produced two small circles made of straw stalks. "And Sarge, if you could be my maid of honor-"
"Absolutely not! As commander of the Red Army, I demand to be the highest ranking official! Is there something higher than maid of honor?"
Donut thought for a moment. “Matron of honor?”
"I’ll be that one! Just don’t expect me to color match. I’m wearing red."
"And Simmons, if you could be my best man," Doc started, but was cut off by an overwhelmed Simmons rushing forward to his him.
"I thought you’d never ask!" the maroon soldier chocked out through small, happy sobs. Doc patted Simmons on the back, carefully, before continuing.
"And as my best man, you’re going to have to ask Carolina to officiate the ceremony. Right? Right. Thanks. Go get her!"
Simmons immediately straightened up. “I resign.”
"No take-backs!" Donut accused before turning Simmons and roughly pushing him towards the base that held the key ingredient. He grudgingly walked over to Blue Base and was greeted by Caboose and Tucker arguing over who gets the room closer to the kitchen. Simmons coughed politely so as not to disturb their struggle over who needs more cookies.
"What the fuck do you want?" Tucker said, knowing he’s about to lose the fight for the prime room at the base.
"I need to talk to Carolina. I guess. And Wash. Actually, I need to talk to all of you. Together."
Caboose turned to the base and yelled out “New-Church and scary blue lady, Simmons needs to talk to us!” Upon reflection, he added, “and also I call dibs on the room next to the kitchen no tagbacks!”
"Dude, that didn’t even make fucking sense," Tucker muttered as Wash and Carolina slowly filed out of the base, their patience noticeably thin. "Yes?" Wash said.
"Ahem," Simmons started, looked at his audience, and said the next sentence in one breath. "You are all semi-cordially invited to Doc and Donut’s wedding and also Carolina you’ll be the one marrying them it’s in half an hour at red base alright awesome see you then." He then turned around and briskly ran away as he heard the confusion settle and Carolina raise her gun at him in annoyance. He reported back to one of the grooms with a smile and a "they’ll be here in half an hour", both slightly out of breath. Donut didn’t question it.
Sure enough, in half an hour, Caboose, Tucker, and Carolina walked over. When they were greeted by Doc, Carolina hurriedly explained. “Wash couldn’t make it. He, uh, he had to run a few more files, and he felt bad about holding you guys up anyway on your very special day.”
Doc stared hard at the blue freelancer, sighed, and then mumbled a “just make sure your voice modulator doesn’t malfunction mid-ceremony, Wash. I mean, Carolina.”
RvB: The Family Business
"Do you have any brothers or sisters?" York asked, his hand trailing over hers in the small bed. Carolina turned to him with a small hint of a mocking smile.
"What is this, York. A date?”
"Hey," he said defensively, kissing her forehead. "We’re cuddling. Cuddling totally means a date. And this is the conversation people have on dates, I think."
She laughed, quietly, and laced her fingers through his. “I think a date involves much more than post-sex cuddling. There should be flowers. And some degree of nearly incapacitating nervousness.”
"You weren’t nervous?" he whispered while kissing her neck. She smiled in that self-assured way that made him a little dizzy sometimes.
"I don’t have any brothers or sisters. You?"
"Two brothers. I was a middle child. What’s that look for?" he said as she laughed it off her face hurriedly. "What does your mom do?"
"Oh." York backed away ever so slightly to see her face. It was simply passive.
"It’s not a big deal, York. She died when I was very young. Soldier of war. I don’t remember much about her anyway." She smiled at him as proof that he hadn’t upset her. "What about your parents?"
"My mom is a doctor. Not an army one, just one that lives in a hospital and visits home for family dinners. My dad is a historian. The house was always full of vintage, dated, somehow-still-functioning technology."
"Have you told North and his obsession with DvPs? I bet he’d love to hear that."
"DvDs, actually. And yeah. I had my dad pull some strings and got him a vintage Captain America movie. He just about kissed me." His fingers were tracing a pattern on her hip bone as he asked, tentatively, "and your father?"
She sighed before answering, “dying, somewhere. He was never quite the same after my mother. At first he was convinced that she was just missing, not dead. He went from a small, wiry watch maker to a soldier overnight to look for her. I guess he’s still alive, because no one from the army has come to tell me otherwise. He wasn’t really there when I was growing up, either.”
"So you became a soldier."
"I couldn’t help it. After my mother and my father decided that our legacy should be lives lost in the name of war, who was I to argue."
"That’s silly," York said, burying his face in the pillow next to her. "You’re much too smart to die in battle."
Carolina looked up at the white ceiling and smiled to herself. “Yes. Yes, I am.”
RvB Drabble: Terse
"You’re sure about this?" Tex said, again. York rolled his eyes, the effort lost behind his helmet. "We can’t come back to save them."
"She told me to go," York muttered finally. That shut Tex up as they were packing, taking armor and ammo and weapons, taking data and provisions and proof.
"I’m sorry," she said, putting the message from CT on a chain around her neck. "What about your bunkmate? He’s still-"
"He’s not going to wake up." There was a sigh in every syllable of that sentence.
"But the doctors said-" she started, unsure why she’s spending this time convincing him out of the act she had spent months persuading him to consider. Something felt weird. He was too quiet.
"Wash isn’t coming back. Not from that. It doesn’t matter if he wakes up." He picked up his weapon. "I don’t like ghost stories, Tex. Let’s just…let’s go."
RvB Drabble: Getting Back On
It was like riding a bicycle.
Wash hated that comparison. The first time he rode a bicycle he fell and scratched his knee. He had a scar for a few months that he showed off proudly. He got back on immediately, with a worried mother and a proud father behind him as he pedaled his way right into another fall.
He used to ride a bicycle to high school, living just close enough to not warrant a bus, but far enough to make walking annoying. He got so comfortable he’s start riding one handed, cutting corners with ease, scaring the pedestrians with a small, half-apologetic smile.
Since he became a soldier, he’d make sure to ride every time he was on leave. He’d get on and it would be a bit shaky, but in a second it would be like home.
It was like riding a bicycle, and his hand shook for a moment as he pointed the gun at his old teammate.
It was like coming home, and he hated that squeezing the trigger as she thanked him came with a sigh of comfort and familiarity.
He hated that comparison.
For AJ! RvB: Extraction
When I have a moment, I will write you something more because it’s your birthday so you need more fics. But for now, here’s that one we collaborated on a long time ago that I found and finished this morning as a small, timely gift (to come before the belated one) :P
"I don’t see why we have a random trooper on this mission," Wyoming said, staring at the offending man in plain, unenhanced armor.
"It is the mission. Protecting a civilian,” South said and the malice was obvious in her voice. Wyoming and Connie laughed.
"Come on, guys," York said with an easy shrug. "Just give the guy a chance, it won’t kill us to learn how to play nice with others."
"Surprise, surprise," Maine growled.
"Hey, we could all use a little more teamwork."
The new guy laughed, and betrayed that “he” was actually a “she”.
"You’re not helping my case," York muttered and the girl raised her hands in defense and defeat.
"You can carry your own weight?" Carolina demanded, speaking for the first time since the Pelican took off. "We’re two minutes from drop point."
"Yeah, no sweat," she said and that seemed enough for Carolina.
"If I had known we were going to babysit, I would’ve brought my gold stars to give you for doing a good job at not dying," South muttered with a smile.
"Who would ever let you within a mile of their kids?" York retorted. North’s small, instinctive laugh came over the radio and died just as suddenly as South’s head whipped around to face him.
"She used to babysit all the time," North said, suddenly very interested in defending his sister’s credibility to watch over children. "Tons of people in our neighborhood would hire her, all the kids were scared shi—-loved her. Loved her, yes."
"I’ll have to make due without that validation, then," the girl said, her voice smothered in sarcasm.
"I see why you stuck up for her, York," Wash chimed in from across the soldier. "She’s got your terrible, obvious sense of humor."
"Hey, I have a fucking awesome sense of humor," both of them said at the same time, and Wash sat back smugly with his arms across his chest, his point sufficiently proven.
"Get ready," Carolina said firmly, cutting the other replies from the agents short. "Showtime."
"Really?" York snickered and Carolina’s helmet turned to glare at him. "Sorry, sorry, I just…really?”
The doors opened before anything else could be said, and the agents rushed out, a surly Carolina behind them.
"Are you mad you didn’t get to have the last word," York asked, head tilted towards the leader in an oddly apologetic stance.
"No," she growled simply.
"Right, because that would be silly."
York nodded. “Sorry.”
She looked at him for a moment, her expression softening slightly under the helmet, and then - “You know, I could’ve sworn you were taller.”
"Must be how I’m standing or something. We ready to go?"
She gave him an odd look- as she normally did -before shaking her head and jumping out. The cement cratered under Carolina’s feet, knees nearly touching the ground. The others had taken up observational cover around her and she was momentarily caught in the revelation that their guest, crouched between the twins, had to be taller than South. The thought was jarred out of her head when York hit the ground hard, stringing together curses as he got to his feet and- was he limping? -moved to cover next to Maine. Carolina just shook her head and barked out, “What’ve we got?” She’d long since come to terms with the fact that, so long as he wasn’t hampering the mission, York just did whatever York did.
"Looks like a full house," North said, scoping the place out on his sniper rifle. "Couple of guards and a lot of traffic in the halls."
Carolina took in the building and surroundings, forming and discarding plans until she said, “Alright, we’ll go for the tried and true method. Maine, you and South make a nice big diversion on the east end. I saw some fuel tanks there and possibly a generator on the drop in. I want you drawing as many to you as you can. North and Wyoming will scope out sniper positions and cover you. The rest of us will head into the base. Connie, we’ll leave you at the data center to get our secondary objective. Wash, watch her back. York and I will get out guest here through to our primary objective. We’ll move once North and Wyoming are in position. Everyone clear?”
They all nodded, “Got it.”
"Get to it, people!"
The Freelancers split up and as Carolina led hers close to the building entrance, she heard York whispering to the newcomer: “She sounds like some cheesey action movie.”
The newcomer whispered right back, “Hey- everyone’s got their kicks.”
"That doesn’t make it any less ridiculous."
"Hey," Carolina snapped at them. "We’ve got a mission to focus on." They held up their hands in almost identical apologetic shrugs.
By Carolina’s elbow, Connie snickered. “What’s wrong, Carolina? Jealous that York’s got a new banter buddy?”
"Try keeping up this time, Connecticut."
Connie just shook her head and laughed which was not the reaction Carolina was going for but at least she didn’t say anything again. In the end, that was fine by Carolina because, even though she’d never admit it out loud, she thought this was pretty useless training mission. Get their special guest party member to the center of the facility to gain access to some prototype only she knew the codes for. Carolina didn’t know why she couldn’t just explain how the Freelancers could get it on their own but the Director had decided and she wasn’t about to question him about it. He already shot down Connie’s attempts to ask, anyway.
havefuncarolina asked: I can't help asking but Wash/Carolina? c:
Wash and Carolina will always be my crackfic ship. This might come out in my answers. I guess it’s because I ship Wash/CT and York/Carolina that putting these two together romantically is always just absolute ridiculousness.
- Who cooks: Wash. Carolina survives on nonperishable army rations. Wash has slowed his life down enough to learn how to make grilled cheese.
- Who does the laundry and other chores: Carolina, under a strict schedule. Sometimes she delegates a task or two to Wash, if he asks often enough.
- How many children do they have: One boy that Carolina smothers with affection and Wash very cautiously reprimands when his mother isn’t around to hear him do so.
- Who’s more dominate: Carolina. Most definitely.
- Favorite nonsexual activity: Making “mission plans” for cleaning up the playroom, complete with their son saluting at the end of the meeting.
- Their favorite place to be together: Hiding in the closet while their kid is trying to find them in a game of hide and seek. They always give themselves away by laughing too much.
- Any traditions: Picking up a random sightseeing book from every place they go to.
- Their “song”: Wash would say it’s that random tune he hums, sometimes saying “come on, Carolina, have fun, Carolina”. Carolina would laugh and say it’s “Give Me Something Good” from that first time Wash tried to drunkenly seduce her. (Thanks Zuzanna.)
- What they do for each other on holidays: They don’t give each other gifts, but spend all their money spoiling their child instead.
- Where did they go for their honeymoon: The beach. Far away from everything except the smell of the sea and the sun on heir faces.
- Where did they first meet: Mission meeting with the new recruits. Carolina was already running those by the time Wash came into the program.
- Any pets: None since they’ve been together.
- What do they fight over: Procedure. For everything, right down to cooking instructions.
- Do they go on vacations, if so where: Disneyland, every New Year’s.
RvB Drabble: Overthinking
She had thought about how to greet him, too. She thought about punching him out of anger, or rolling her eyes in that familiar way he always inspired. She thought of taking out a lighter or stealing his, because of course he’d have a lighter if he met her again. She thought about laughing to his joke, for the first time in so long she can’t even remember.
She thought about doing something she was afraid, without him, she’d forgotten how to do. She thought about showing her affection, for once, with kindness and sincerity rather than a thinly veiled jab or playful violence.
She thought about how he would greet her for days and nights, months, weeks, years. She thought about it until Wash unceremoniously pronounced him dead, and dreamed about it until she went to where it had happened.
She was too busy listening to the memory file journal entries to think, but after they finished that missed meeting was all she could see in her dreams, some kind of masochistic cruelty playing all of the scenarios he mentioned and a bigger part - bigger than the hurt or loss or pain - wished it would never stop.
She thought, naively, that more violence and death and holding the director accountable for everyone’s sins would make it better. She thought just one more thing, one more mission, and it would all be worth it.
She thought, but really she hoped, and she imagined it was a fitting tribute to the one guy who had always hoped the best for her.
RvB: Confirmation (post s10e10)
Wash supposed it was payback for how he broke the news about York.
Not that Carolina was being intentionally malicious. She probably didn’t even know there was anything to be malicious about. He and CT had fallen apart so spectacularly months before that mission, months before he realized she was talking to the Insurrection. So when she told him what happened, and he responded, she didn’t know what was happening.
Sometimes Wash hated how good of a liar he’d become.
And he’d just blurted it out, hastily, just “York is dead.” He didn’t offer her details or explanations or a warning. At least she gave him all three.
Even if he kind of wished she hadn’t.
But that was it, then. Confirmed. CT - Connie - has been dead for a long time. He should have checked the helmet when he first found it. Should have checked for her face. But then he’d be standing here, looking at it in the sand with hope and he remembered how much hope hurts, how it eats at you and how it sweeps everything in its wake for a tidal wave of pain in the face of confirmation.
So he answered, nonchalantly, the same acting that got him re-certified after Epsilon. He looked at the armor of the woman he thought dead, adding a sense of guilt or betrayal. Maybe if he had agreed to leave with her, all that time ago. When she first asked. Maybe then-
Maybe then he wouldn’t need confirmation. He wouldn’t have had to tell Carolina in three words the only person she cared about died. He wouldn’t have had every friend turn on him.
He wouldn’t need to constantly second guess his old squad leader because another betrayal would be just his luck.
He wouldn’t find so much comfort in two teams of simulation troopers who never seem to do anything right, because somehow it seems that little fact keeps them from doing anything horribly wrong, too.
He wouldn’t need confirmation, and it wouldn’t hurt so damn much when he got it.
super short ficlet with kinda spoilers under the cut, will write more better when brain starts working again.
RvB: The Art of Seduction
"It’s really not that hard," Carolina was saying, her voice doing that dangerous frequent pitch change thing that signaled she really was on her very last nerve. "When I say sync, you all sync your watches with mine. Then we all have the same time." She then looked very pointedly at Sarge, who was on the verge of saying something, and added "this has absolutely nothing to do with time travel.”
Tucker gave Wash that look, the one that just said “come on man, take one for the team and calm her down.” Caboose was already three planets away in his mind, Grif was barely listening, and Simmons was too busy whispering in his teammate’s ear about the importance of mission protocol.
A man after Wash’s own heart.
"Carolina, a word?" Wash said and led the woman away from the victims of her increasing fury. He led her to his room, away from the fight that broke out about the glorious red army or something like that. He closed the door behind him, turning towards her with all the resolve of one who’s going to take one for the team and also going to absolutely, totally unsarcastically, lie to himself that he won’t enjoy it. "You alright, boss? You seem a bit tense. Maybe a massage will help."