[personal profile] singerdiva01
Title: Night Vigil
Rating: K
Word Count: 570
Characters: Billy Keikeya, Bill Adama
Summary: Billy and Admiral Adama have a conversation at Laura's bedside a few hours after she was injected with Hera's blood.
A/N: Huge thanks to [livejournal.com profile] laura_mayfair for the quick, supportive beta and the title suggestion.

Billy must have nodded off because his whole body jolted at the sound of metal scraping across linoleum.

When his eyes flew open he looked not for the source of the sound but over at the woman lying on the bed in front of him. He breathed a sigh of relief when he confirmed the president was still sleeping peacefully, her chest moving up and down in an almost normal rhythm.

Admiral Adama had pulled a chair to the other side of the bed and taken the president’s hand. He looked tired, old even, but his gaze was soft as he completed his own inspection. He’d lifted his other hand to stroke the president’s hair but stopped midway when he realized Billy was awake and watching.

Billy felt his lips parting in a smile. He looked down at the floor and was disappointed when he saw the Admiral lower his hand out of the corner of his eye.

“How’s she doing, son?”

Billy tightened his own grip on the president’s fingers and licked his lips.

“Cottle gave her something to make sure she sleeps through the night.”

Adama frowned and tore his eyes away from the president’s face to give Billy a concerned look.

“Something wrong? I told Doc to notify me if there was any change.”.

His low rumble was more strained than usual. Billy raised a hand to stop him before he worried further.

“No, no, sir. She’s still fine. Improving, hard as that is to believe.”

He paused to swallow back the lump in his throat but it only grew larger when the Admiral gave him a sympathetic nod to take a moment.

He finally managed to choke out a laugh.

“Cottle said the existential crisis could wait ‘til morning.”

Adama raised his eyebrows but not quickly enough to hide his wince. He ran a hand across his face and turned his gaze back to President Roslin.

The two men sank into companionable silence. Billy didn’t usually deign to read Adama’s thoughts but tonight he figured it was a good bet they were similar to his own.

Troubled, yes, still worried and more than a little apprehensive. But mostly thankful, above all else, for Laura Roslin’s continued life.

He wondered absently if the Admiral had figured out to what or whom to direct that gratitude. Neither of them believed a whit in the Gods and he figured their combined faith in Gaius Baltar didn’t add up to much more. It bothered him, would have concerned him, had he not been so exhausted.

Adama woke him more gently this time, with a soft clearing of his throat. Billy smiled sheepishly but was glad for his nap when he realized the Admiral looked more at peace than before. He hoped that meant he’d given in to his earlier urge but neither the position of his hands or the president’s mussed hair gave him any clue.

“I know I can’t give you orders, Billy, but you should get some rest,” Adama said as he stood and adjusted his posture. “It’s been a hell of a day.”

Billy nodded politely and looked back down, already half hypnotized by the president’s steady breaths.

Adama was almost out the curtain when a piece of Billy’s own existential crisis resolved with sudden and soothing clarity.


Adama turned expectantly.

“Thank you, sir,” Billy said with a glance at his boss. “Thank you.”
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