Hawk And Pilot

Who: Hicks, Dangerfield
Where: Arras Airfield
When: April 24, 2006
What: Dangerfield meets the very colorful mechanic Hicks.

Arras Airfield

A farmers field just at the outskirts of the town has been transformed into a forward airfield. Batteries of antiaircraft guns are scattered about, for this close to the Front, all manner of bad things can happen. With the protective line of Vimy Ridge to the east, at least this spot is safe from Fritz's artillery.

Hicks is working on one of the airplanes, loading it, refilling fuel, spitting on the pilot seat as a last touch.

Dangerfield adjust the scarf, runs a hand through his unruly hair and wanders towards the planes smoking a cigarette.

Hicks eyes his handywork, wiping off his hands on his pants before digging up a cigarette, he starts to walk down the line of airplanes, looking for the next object.

Dangerfield stops by one of the Sopwiths, watching it proudly. Seeing Hicks, he perks up even more and wanders towards the large mechanic, raising a hand in a greeting. "Hello there!" he says; even those few words shows his colors, upper class Brit that he is.

Hicks looks at Dangerfield, not returning the greeting, instead he looks around, raising his voice "Pilot! You bastard, come here" he looks around himself for a few moments more before looking back at Dangerfield, grunting out "What do you want?"

Dangerfield is a bit taken aback by that greeting. He pauses uncertainly some distance away, then points at 'his' Sopwith. "Just wondering how she's doing. That is, if you've had a chance to look her over today."

Hicks looks over at the Sopwith, but at the same time a dog that looks like a mix of a bulldog and a small boxer comes running across the airfield, which catches his attention. "Pilot, you bastard. Where have you been? Now you stay here." He looks up at the airplane again. "It'll fly, it's in good enough shape for you."

Dangerfield looks quite relieved to understand that 'Pilot' is a dog and not some unfortunate pilot who is on Hicks' leash. "Oh! Pilot, hi there," he says and crouches down to greet the dog, reaching a hand out to see if the dog wants to sniff at it. He squints up at Hicks. "Good enough shape for me. I… well, thank you," he says and smiles broadly. He's feeling a bit out of his element, here. "Wonderful planes, aren't they?"

Pilot is a lot friendlier than Hicks with his greeting. Hicks looks down at his dog for a moment before turning his attention back to Dangerfield. "Wonderful? Crap is a better word for them." He shakes his fist at Dangerfield, "You pilots play around for a few minutes, and then we have to spend every hour of the day getting them ready to fly. Wonderful?" He spits at the ground, "The world would be better without them at all."

Dangerfield blinks at Hicks, petting the dog fondly enough. The accusations from Hicks makes him look suitably guilty. Straightening up again, he tugs a bit at his scarf which is wound around his neck a few times. "They're rather important for us. To win the war and all," he tries. "The Germans have planes, we need them too to fight them."

Hicks grunts some more before he starts to talk, "If nobody ever built the damn things in the first place nobody would have them." He puts out the cigarette against his boot before tossing it away. "And what is so important about winning the war? Who cares about France? Not me, that is for sure. I'd rather be home in good old England instead of this sorry excuse for a country. We die to protect someone else, what a great idea."

"But if we don't stop them here they might take the whole of France and then turn their eyes upon Britain," Dangerfield says, straightening up a bit. He's still suffering from illusions of fighting the good and honorably fight. "Either case, not a whole lot to do about it now, eh? We're here, and we do what we have to do."

"I've heard how it went for us when we tried to land on a coast close to the enemy. And besides, why would they try to attack us?" Hicks spits again, "No, let us go home and let the Germans keep whatever land they've taken. This whole war is pointless."

"They would try to attack us to keep us from attacking them, basically. But what's the point theorizing. I'm happy to help France to liberty," Dangerfield says in a surge of pride. He remembers something suddenly, and holds a hand out. "James Dangerfield."

"Our navy is superior, it would just be back to normal" Hicks doesn't seem to have any will to keep on arguing for now, and he actually grins when he holds out his rather big hand, maybe because it is black and greasy. "Hawk" is the only name he offers.

Dangerfield is, despite his rather impeccable look, not the least afraid to get dirty. He shakes Hicks hand firmly. "Nice to meet you, Hawk. Say, if you wouldn't mind awfully, perhaps I could come along for when you take care of one of the planes? I just like to know what's happening to them outside of being in the air. Afraid that wasn't really a part of our training."

Hicks shakes his head, grunting again, "I hate to work with someone looking over my shoulder." He kneels down, Pilot runs over to him at once, "Besides, not much left to do at the moment."

Dangerfield nods his understanding, looking a bit disappointed but not too much. "I can see that, Hawk. But, if you need someone handing you… wrenches or something, don't hesitate to ask. I'd love to look at your work." He inclines his head and smiles. "I best get back to a briefing we're having. I'll talk to you soon again."

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