Had but I Served with Half the Zeal I Served my King (Lance and Bucket)

This is an RP between @Buckethead and @cyclops where Bucket and Lance talk about the shit they’ve been through and dealing with it. The scene will start with Bucket in Finnegan’s and Lance will approach him.

It is the late evening, the bar has a view of the city, and just beyond but the lights of the city are relatively unchanged where they are now. Lance had wanted to have a conversation with the man for a while, since he was retiring. When Lance came into the tavern he saw Bucket there and headed over, he cleared his throat and asked politely, and even quieter than the man usually asked, “Pardon me, Mr. Michaels, can I join you?” He wasn’t sure what the man was doing but Lance’s look said that he definitely wanted to talk about something that made him uncomfortable.

Bucket looked up from his drink, and PADD. He had been trying to map out where all the things on his fighter go, since it was built from scratch and had zero blueprints. “Uhm… Hey Lance.” He returned the greeting. He wasn’t used to people calling him ‘Mr. Michaels’, everyone usually just called him Bucket. Hell, the last person who called him by his first name died seven years ago, four years before he spliced in. “Sure, you can sit down here, I don’t mind.”

It was true that Lance didn’t know the man well. Didn’t know him well at all, one of those things were a person always means to get to know someone better but fails to. He sits with him, “I’m sorry to disturb you.” and he notes the man’s reaction to a formal greeting, “I,” he pauses, “Well I wanted to ask you something, it is a bit personal so feel free to decline to answer, if you wish?”

Bucket switches off his PADD and sets it aside, sipping his drink. “Sure, go ahead. Shoot.” He replied with a nod.

“I’ve spent most of my life in the field.” he says quietly, settling into what he was going to say, even though it was far more personal for him than he even usually told Drem… Still, he wanted to know, “Lately those experiences have, started to return, usually at night. Sometimes I can’t sleep at all, and when I do, I often don’t sleep for long.” he nods, “I know on an academic level that this is to be expected, knowing something about what you’ve been through, I wondered if you had similar issues?”

Bucket sighed. He wasn’t sure he wanted to get into a discussion about this kind of thing with someone he has spoken to maybe… Once before? But, he did owe Lance for getting him off the Death Star. “Uhm… Yeah, I have.”

He could read Bucket’s face reasonably well and then finally said, “You don’t have to talk about it, this isn’t an order, it is just a… Request.” He lets that sit a moment, “I’ve just been having a few issues, but you’re under no obligation to talk to me, I mean it.”

“It’s fine, we can talk about things if you want.” Bucket nods, giving a reassuringly polite smile.

He looks at Bucket for a bit not sure how to continue… “I don’t sleep most nights.” he starts out in a blurt, hoping that it will come easier after, “Things come back that I haven’t thought about actively in more than 10 years.” he shakes his head, “Sometimes not even the way I remember it.”

Bucket nodded slowly. He could relate, mostly. “I know the feeling…” He took a deep breath. “Since I was rescued from the Death Star-- Thanks by the way-- I haven’t been sleeping too well myself…”

He nods, “We would have been there sooner, if we’d known where you were.” he says quietly, still feeling bad about how long Bucket had been there, “Is that why you’re retiring?” he asks quietly. “I’m only asking, because I don’t want to retire yet myself.”

“Not entirely, I think Typhos makes a better captain than me, too. He can handle himself alot better than I can. I know he won’t end up like I did.”

Lance tilts his head, “You mean captured?” he asks a little quietly, “I read the reports, I do not believe that was something that came from a lack of abilities or judgement.”

“Typhos would be able to defend himself in a spot like that. I am not that kind of person… I guess I just don’t want to end up in Imperial hands again.” He shrugged.

He nods, “I can understand that. I was captured once, by Klingons.” he said for a moment, then he looks, “That’s not what comes back to me though, usually its people dying. I’ve seen a lot of people die and when I close my eyes for too long, I can see them and hear their last words.”

“Oh, yeah.” He nods as well. “Took me a while to get over that kind of thing. Well… Not really get over. I guess I just came to be used to that sort of thing.”

“Used to it?” he asks quietly, “How do you mean? I can’t imagine getting used to it.” he genuinely looks bothered by the idea. “Procedure would have me go to a counselor of some kind, but there are a lot of secrets in talking about it.”

“After a while it just stopped bothering me as much as it used to.” Is all Bucket says in response to the first part. “I couldn’t really get very far with counseling.”

Lance smiles then, “Oh, I don’t see how I’d get very far either, to be honest.” He shrugs then, “So what you’re saying is you just had to learn to live with it?”

“It’s hard to open up to strangers.” Bucket nods. “And yeah. I live with it. Alcohol helps.”