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Beautiful History pt2

Title Beautiful History (2/2)
Author angelicalangie
Summary: Events on New Caprica return to haunt Kara
Characters Lee, Kara, Cottle, Adama, Sam, Helo, Leoben, Simon, OFC.
Rating Teen
Length: 11,882
Warnings Light dub-con, definitely an amount of Stockholm Syndrome in the beginning. Mentions of Kara's relationship with her mother. Mentions of “The Farm”. If I have left anything else out, I am really sorry

Beautiful History, pt 1

Chapter Three

Kara doesn’t want to be there; the once comforting nature of sitting on the couch with the old man suddenly seems daunting. She looks at the Admiral across the desk. She sits upright, back straight, eyes unseeing – her gaze just over his shoulder at a point on the wall. She is listening to him, hearing his disappointment in tone of voice, not in words, and an icy cold numbness is spreading through her. As the Admiral stands up, so does she, frowning for a brief moment and looking at him a little closer, but as with the entire time they’ve sat in this room, the conversation has flown completely over her head.

“Dismissed.” The Admiral says, resigned, as he is looking at Kara. He isn’t holding out a hand to her, he isn’t moving more than standing behind his desk, and his immobility confuses her. It's like he is fighting between two separate emotions. She knows that he was waiting for her to return to flight status, she thinks he must feel let down, especially since he knows through the wonderful rumour mill of the ship, that she and Sam have split.

She nods,the clouds within her mind beginning to dissipate just enough to be a little more aware of the world around her. Realising what has been said she brings her hand up and snaps off a salute, turning on her heel and marching out with more confidence and energy than she has right now.

Galactica’s corridors are a quieter place after main shift has happened, but there are still people milling about, walking from place to place, some more urgent than others. Laughter echoes down the halls, meeting her ears in an alien cacophony. Something makes Kara lift her head and she glances up and sees Dee, the woman who managed to get the prize. Anyone watching would see sadness on Kara’s face. But Dee perceives it differently, sees pity where there is loss.

Dee continues down the corridor, disturbed and angered by Kara’s expression. She has heard the rumours and they begin to repeat themselves in her mind. She disregards the fact that Kara is pregnant; if anything it is another thing that angers her about Kara. Kara got pregnant whilst she seems to have failed. She has heard the rumours that Lee is circling around Kara, that Sam has left Kara and the last thing she is supposed to have said was that the child was hers no matter the father. That piece is something that really gets her mind racing. What if that child is Lee’s?

It isn’t a question that is new to her; she’s spent days thinking it over, from the moment that she heard it. Now that Kara has looked at her pityingly, the puzzle pieces are beginning to fall into place. She continues on past Kara, blindly passing others as thoughts run riot in her mind. She enters her quarters and slams the hatch behind her, the clang reverberating in the metal room, but Dee pays it no heed. She walks to where they keep their ambrosia and Chief’s brew and grabs a tumbler and a bottle before sitting on the couch that lines one side of their quarters. She pours more than a couple fingers worth in a glass and downs it in one. Feeling more relaxed she pours herself another glass and leans back into the corner of the couch, crosses her legs and toes the coffee table absent minded, waiting for him to return.

Drink after drink passes before he walks in, dress blues open at the neck, hair in every direction. It’s obvious even to her that he has had a rough day at the office; it isn’t in her to care. All she can think of is that he has slept with Her, that she will smell Her when he kisses her and she cannot stand the thought. She takes another swig of whatever viper fuel she is drinking, trying to burn her memory away.

She’s drunk and unlike other women, Dee bypasses giggles and fun, no she hits up belligerent, accusatory and depressed. Her insecurity in this relationship has always been her worst feature to him, and now she is going to hit him with it full force, because she’s right. She saw it in that bitch’s eyes as she passed her. Knows that Starbuck has won the man she loves and she could never compete.

“So Dee, you had as bad a day.” He is undressing in their quarters, and she is watching, and then she is doing more. She is raking her eyes over him, not in a lustful way, not in the manner of a wife. She is scouring him and trying to find some physical evidence of his indiscretion.

“Yeah, something like that.” She is beginning to slur her words and it’s that which brings Lee upright.

He backs away from the locker where he has stored his uniform, and he stares at his normally straight-laced wife, normally more reserved with the alcohol than him, and he knows something is wrong. For a moment he just stands there looking at her a little closer and realizes that she is not relaxing on the couch, but in a position that once looked like she had been relaxing and is nearer now to slumped, that the coffee table normally so well positioned in front of the couch is now at an angle. Things are definitely not good.

“When were you going to tell me, then?” She finally speaks, but somehow manages to surprise herself with how muted her voice sounds. Inside her she wants to scream, but apparently her drunkenness is not helping things as she feels tears begin to fall.

“What?!” The lack comprehension of what she is talking about shows in his expression and it begins to fuel her.

“Kara, that baby she is carrying. It’s yours!” She is screaming at him and it is no doubt heard outside.

“What in the gods’ names are you talking about, who gave you that impression?” He can’t begin to think straight, but he moves towards her. He holds his hands out, almost imploring her. The glass she was holding flies towards him, smashing on the corner of the hatch, shards flying back into the room. She stands shaking, wild-eyed and absolutely enraged, but completely unaware of the shock on her husband’s face. Good-natured, always there, the good rock in rough seas Dee is not here today.

“I didn’t need to be told, I saw her today. You should have seen the way she looked at me Lee, she pitied me! I knew she was pregnant. Frak! The whole ship knows that, and the fact that Sam isn’t the father. We all knew her vows meant nothing, but I thought ours did!” And as soon as the anger arrived it departs and leaves her sobbing on the floor. Lee has no idea what is going on, only that his father sent down word that Kara was grounded indefinitely. He has no idea how the two crossed paths, but on a ship this small anything is possible.

“Dee,” Lee begins, but cannot find anything to say. Moving slowly he approaches her, kneels on the floor and tries to wrap his arms around her.

“No! No, you don’t get to try that; ‘It’s all in your head, Dee.’ No.” She roughly shoves his arms away from her before moving and scrabbling away from him. There is nothing dignified in her heartbreak, but then again there is nothing dignified in what is left of her marriage.

Lee stands up and realizes he is in his briefs and socks; clothing seemed so trivial a few moments ago and now it occupies a space in his mind that had been for Dee. He walks to the locker again, and pulls on some sweats, and grabs a clean uniform and an overnight bag, neatly folding his clothes as he goes. As he folds his dress blues he looks up, he sees Dee sitting on their bed, folded up, staring at him darkly.

“Going to go frak your whore, are you?” It’s spat at him, it’s dark and ugly. It’s an accusation borne of hurt and one Lee will not respond to in kind.

“I think we need some cool-off time, I am going to bunk with the pilots. You’ll find me in their bunkrooms if you need me.” Lee schools his voice into gentle civility, then leaves.

* * *
There is a fever pitch mood on the deck: cubits, for all their worth, are being exchanged, excited voices rising and laughter filling the space. Kara is late as ever to the dance, watching the scene below from the crowded catwalk, searching for a couple of people out of all those assembled. Her shortened hair frames her face like a halo as she watches the tableau below, a smile breaking out as she spots Helo, at least. Making short work of the steps that lead her to the deck she squeezes as best as possible between people. She isn’t showing just yet, but she’s already getting protective of her mid-section.

“If it isn’t the fighting Agathons, huh?” Kara’s smile is huge and teasing as she says it. Her Starbuck persona is riding high.

“Starbuck, late to the party as usual.” It’s a slight admonishment, and more a tease amongst friends. Kara smiles a full beam smile and talks straight to Helo, who will be waking up with a few bruises in the morning

“At least I got here in time to watch you kick the CAG’s ass.” She is going to enjoy watching it, too. It has been a while since she spoke to Lee and she hoped they had laid some of their baggage to rest, but perhaps, she thinks, she was wrong.

“He’s a tough little frakker, I’ll give him that. He’s springing like he’s got it in for me.” Helo finally weighs in, mind completely on the game, washing his mouth out with water, placing the bite guard in his mouth and going into the fray. Kara watches for a moment and has a sudden urge to throw her own tags into the box; she could stand to go at it with Lee. She feels as though she has been frozen out after all he had said, and the longer he has left it, the angrier she has become.

“Stay off the ropes!” Sharon calls after her husband and Kara regards the other woman and realizes that the only marriage that looks like it is going the distance is the one between her best friend and a Cylon.

In seconds it is all over, and Lee is on the mats being counted out. Kara yells out when Cottle deems him unfit to continue this fight. Helo wins - not that he wouldn’t have, but to Kara it seems like a cop-out win. Helo takes his victory and Sharon wraps her arms around him, their assured smiles in place. Things are looking good for Helo later on. Kara, however, cannot let sleeping dogs lay and hunts down Lee.

“Good fight. Bit off a little more than you can chew, huh?” She begins goading, hiding the hurt that in the past few weeks since she confided in him, he hasn’t once spoken to her. It is something that he continues as he walks off with a dark look towards her.

“Don’t be that way. Stick around, the night’s young – you might still get the chance to paste some green nugget into the mats.” She leaves off the obvious, or have them paste you, but the implication hangs in the air.

“Well I guess then you’ll just have to enjoy it without me.” His voice is cold, and holds not a small amount of irritation.

“Pulling your tags out so soon?” Kara teases, but there is nothing friendly, all that hurt had to go somewhere and with Kara it has been poured into anger.

“I’m done, Kara.” He sounds worn out and in a way he is. It is the constant push and pull between Kara and Dee. Whilst Dee is his wife, he can’t seem to help himself where Kara is concerned.

“I can’t offer you a fight to get your frustrations out, Apollo. I think we can both thank the Cylons for that.” It’s bitterness and frustration poured into one sentence and it’s whispered into his ears. Lee turns to Kara, exhaling like a balloon letting go of its air.

“We can’t talk here, there are too many people. We can’t leave together for the same reason, so this will have to wait.” Kara feels as though she has been slapped and is tempted again to throw her tags into the box, give him a taste of his own medicine.

“No, we talk this out now. I have plenty to hear from you; not least of all why after telling you I am pregnant you leave me high and dry. I don’t get it, Lee. The thing is I could really do with the people who promise to stick with me through this actually being there.” Kara’s hurt begins to show on her face, and Lee suddenly realizes just how much pregnancy has altered her.

“I know when I left I said I would be there for you, but things happened.” He looks at her and he doesn’t know what to say, so much is going on in his head, his heart and his marriage and they are all pulling him in separate directions.

From afar two other sets of eyes watch them in their verbal duel. Sam looks resigned; he has known that this was coming down the line, that there is too much between them. He is calm as he watches it, the woman beside him less than so. She goes rigid and the anger thrumming through her curls her hands into fists, as she makes noises and does everything it takes to not walk over and make this more of a scene. They both know that the paternity of the child Kara is carrying has now gone from unknown to confirmed. Anastasia Dualla knows that in the halls of Galactica tomorrow it will be more than just the pitying eyes of Kara Thrace that she will have to deal with, and it isn’t an idea she wants to think about.

Chapter Four

The gym is darkened and there is a sole occupant punching the bag as hard as he possibly can, sweat pouring down his back and his breathing laboured. His focus so swept up in the rhythmic pounding that his fists are providing on the tethered leather that he never notices the larger man lean in the hatch way, watching him.

“So what did she do this time?” 

Lee looks up from the heavy bag to the voice that has spoken and finally notices Helo standing, arms crossed and a resigned look upon his face.

“Kara's pregnant. The ship knows. Sam walked because it isn't his.” He wasn't betraying her, and it was pretty much a list of everything that the crew of Galactica knew anyhow.

“Yeah, but Sam wouldn't have walked if it were just anyone's.” Helo is blunt and gets to the point. Moving across the room he holds the heavy bag as Lee resumes hitting it.

“It isn't mine, Helo.” Lee feels guilty about breaking Kara's confidence, but part of him is anxious about the situation.

“I know, I knew from the moment she came to me. I know it’s Leoben's.” 

Lee looks at Helo in surprise, his arms falling to his sides as though they are weighted with lead. “How do I deal with this? I don't want to leave her on her own, but a hybrid? How do you deal with that?” He is less put together as he usually is, his mind in so many places it is reflected in his speech.

“Hera was as loved as any child ever has been. Still scared us both. Losing Hera was the worst thing that has happened to me after the attacks, but if I were offered the opportunity to have Hera in my life again, would I take it? Yes, absolutely.” Helo watches Lee as he considers the other man's experience.

“Then there is this whole thing between me and Kara. Gods, everything keeps coming back to Kara. I keep trying to have relationships with other women and it never works, she is always there.” Lee walks to one of the benches used for bench presses and sits, blindly unwrapping his hands and coming to conclusions in his own mind.

“You and Kara can't see beyond your noses where each other are concerned.” Helo laughs, but he is the only one laughing.

“You’re right,” Lee says finally. “We seem to bounce back to each other, no matter what happens. ” Lee stands up, smiles and pats Helo on the back. “Thanks.” Lee walks out of the gym, leaving Helo behind.

“You're welcome,” Helo mumbles. “I dunno what for, but I’ll take the credit.” He laughs and moves to the exercise equipment and starts his own workout.
* * *

“Be careful now Lee, there is going to be talk after our little chat at the dance.” Her voice is disembodied and slightly muffled as Kara lays on her back under a Viper.

“They already is, Kara. I doubt at this point in time it will matter what we do,” Lee replies as he drops down to the floor to join Kara.

“Fine, but if Dee makes you sleep on the couch, I had no part in it, this was all your idea,” Kara teases, smiling as she replaces a spark plug.

“I've been sleeping on the real couch for a while now.” His voice sounds tired as he says it but it's the truth.

“Real as compared to…?” Kara looks up at him slightly confused, her mind focused on the literal.

“The metaphorical.” His words hang in the air.

Kara sits up and looks down at Lee as he too comes out from under her Viper, shock colouring her her features. She has no idea what to say and the uncertainty falls across her eyes. She stares and silence passes between them.

“I didn't know she had kicked you out.”

“She didn't. She didn't need to.” He looks Kara in the eyes and it is as open a conversation as they have ever had.

“Oh.” It's quiet and muted and she looks at Lee, trying to fathom this new topography in their relationship. The silence doesn't last long, though.

“Perhaps we should continue this some other time, like the CAG's office at 2200 hours?” Lee reassures himself that he didn't ask her, he repeats it to himself in the short time it takes for Kara to respond.

“Are you asking me out?” She's teasing him and it reminds him of the time that she came back from Caprica with Helo and Athena.

“You're dreaming,” he responds, teasing back.

“You are,” she leans forward and whispers to him.

“I take it back, I never said a thing,” he returns. It’s almost like a sport with them. He turns and begins to walk away, laughing.

“Oh, there are no takebacks, Lee. I thought you had learned that by now.”

He laughs at her. “I was hoping you were going to say that.” His voice is light and in the moment, and then the moment seems to the outward world to end. “CAG's office, 2200.”

He says it like an order, but Kara knows better, the smile hasn't left her face. She knows far better. He has always been the one concerned about outward appearance.

* * *

Lee walks the corridors of Galactica with a sense of tiredness, his shift having ended half an hour previous and all he can think of getting to his office. He’s been staying there since he walked out on Ana. As he walks he begins to unbutton his uniform, the collar now feeling as though it is strangling him. He reaches his hatch, opens the door and steps into the darkness. Flicking a light on, the room is illuminated as he walks to the couch and dumps his jacket on it. He stares at the small coffee table in front of the couch and notices an envelope.

He picks it up and realises that it weighs more than it had given the appearance of whilst sat on the coffee table. Sitting down on the couch he opens the envelope and the officious paper spills its se-crets. Absent-mindedly Lee pushes a blanket away as he reads page after page, each moment won-dering how he ever knew the person who had instigated them. He is so involved in the details that he is oblivious to the sound of Kara entering the room and closing the hatch behind her.

“Is there something so inherently fascinating about reports that you don't hear people walking in the room?” Kara says finally, making Lee jump. He stares at her and then he blinks and brings himself back to the moment.

“Not a report.” He offers it up to her and she picks it up from his hand. Flipping it over she begins to read and her eyes slowly widen.

“Wow. She was fast.” Kara thumbs through the papers, seeing her future as she does. “She beat out Sammy and we have been busted up longer than you guys.” She looks up and down at Lee who is just staring at her. She moves her mouth, trying to say something, but nothing comes to mind.

“I think I'll take the shovel from you now, save you from digging yourself any deeper.” He smiles at her awkwardness. He gently takes the divorce papers from her hands, tilting his head to the space on the couch beside him.

“What happened, Lee?” Kara says quietly.

“We made mistakes, married for the wrong reason,” he says. He's speaking for himself and Dee, but it could be said for Kara and Sam in his mind. He would never blatantly say that though.

“I was scared.” 

Lee looks up to Kara, almost not believing his ears. “Scared?”

“Yeah, I met Sam on Caprica and it made me feel like the end of the worlds hadn't happened, that it was all some drill. Then I brought him back and it was … different. There was a thrill for a while, and then I realised I wasn't shaken by him. I kiss you and it feels like an earthquake. Around you I find I want to do the impossible, I could take on the universe and the Gods and come out victori-ous.” She blows out a breath and steals a look at him and sees his eyebrows are raised. She fidgets with her hands and silence sits between them.

“You scare me Lee, whatever is between us scares me. It's the reason I ran off and married Sam – talk about your wrong reasons – Gods!” She exclaims as she stands and begins pacing in the small room.

“I scare you?” Disbelief colours his voice.

“Yeah, because, since I have known you, no matter what I do, you always turn up – even if it is to rub my nose in it.” She stops for a moment, stops talking, stops moving. “I am slowly realising something about you Lee, or maybe it is us. We can scream and shout, but somehow we can't really push each other away. We're like singularities.”

“Singularities. Since when did you know 50 cubit words like that,” Lee jokes back, trying to lighten the atmosphere. He relaxes back on the couch as he smiles.

“It's true though.” She looks at Lee, watching him as he sits. “The big problem is one day you're not going to be there. Sam's left, Zak left, my dad left. Gods am I even fit to be a mother given the only mother I had …” she leaves off as she realises what she is about to say, knowing her voice has given her away.

“What about your mother?” Lee looks warily at Kara.

“She, she hit me as a kid. I probably deserved a lot of it. I wasn't perfect.” She shrugs her shoulders dismissively and in that moment Lee realises that beyond what happened with her mother, he needs to allay her fears.

“You are not going to recreate the past. I am not your father, you did not kill Zak, irrespective of what you think you did to Zak, and Sam is a jock and an idiot for even walking away. You have done your worst to me, and certainly I did my worst right back, but here we are.” Lee looks Kara in the eye, raising her chin so her eyes meet his, her uncertainty palpable. He kisses her forehead before continuing.

“As you say, we are singularities, we define and explain the laws of gravity and relationships. I'm not going anywhere. Gods where is there to go? Really, there is nowhere physically for me to go!” He laughs when he thinks of it, then looks at Kara and sees the tears rolling down her face as she has her arms wrapped around herself. Lee pulls her to him, wrapping her in his arms tightly, kissing the crown of her head “It will be okay, we will get through this.”