Rating: 18+; Disclaimer: not mine;
Pairing: Kara Thrace/Billy Keikeya, ref: Kara/Lee, Dualla/Lee, Kara/Sam Anders, Dualla/Billy Spoilers: Sacrifice.
Set: Right smack in the middle of Sacrifice. Sort of. If you, er, stretch the episode a little more.
Length: 1,700+ Summary: Billy goes looking for (trouble) Official Business-type stuff. Trouble ensues.
Genre: drama, pwp, angst, la Notes: Title's from the Lush song of the same name. This was a fic which popped into my brain after pondering Dee/Kara, actually, though it's not in here. I had to, um, actually pull over on the side of the road to write down notes for it.

Light From a Dead Star
by ALC Punk!

Billy knows why he went poking around crew quarters. And he thinks, a little, that he's probably pathetic for doing it. Luckily, he can pretend to be on official business if need be. Something to do with checking the morale of the troops. Nothing to do with looking for the woman who'd ripped his heart in two.

Laughter draws him into the common room, to watch the triad game. Starbuck's in full swing, riding high and laughing every two minutes. There's a sparkle in her eyes that says she's drunker than the rest, but she still wins.

And he can't help but lurk to one side, watching the game. Subconsciously hoping--well, he's not going to go there, or that really would be too frakking sad.

"Last bets!" Starbuck suddenly calls, standing, almost weaving.

It's natural to reach out and catch her elbow when she starts to teeter sideways. "Sir--" A giggle escapes her, and he suddenly has to use both arms to keep the dead-weight of Starbuck-drunk-off-her-ass from falling over and taking him with her. "Hey--"

"Thanks." She pats him on the back and burps inelegantly. "You're a life-saver."

"Last bet, Starbuck!" Gaeta calls, and he's smirking the smirk of a man who believes he's got full colors.

"Right!" She breaks away from Billy's hold and half-falls back into her seat, shoves the three pairs of socks and bottle of ambrosia into the middle of the table and leans back. "Call."

There's a rumble of complaints, and two of the players fold before Gaeta lays out his near-perfect straight. He smirks at Starbuck, then begins reaching for the ambrosia, "It was nice while it lasted, Starbuck. But I think your winning streak's broken."

"Nuh-uh." Her hand closes over his before he can remove the bottle. "Think again, Sparky. I'm afraid you've lost. Again." She tosses her cards face-up and smirks around the cigar in her mouth.

The table stares a moment at the full colors displayed, then erupts into laughter and cheers. A few slap each other on the back. Currency changes hands, and Billy realizes some of them were betting on the outcome of the game. The skill of the players. He remembers rather vividly, Dualla telling him about never betting against Starbuck unless she was up against Dr. Baltar.

Distracting himself is taken out of his hands when one of Starbuck's hands catch his arm. "Hey, I think you're the rest of my prize."

She's drunk, he convinces himself as she stands again, winnings bundled under one arm. When she almost falls, he can't resist propping her up, though. And a frantic glance around the room only nets him Lieutenant Agathon's amused (and slightly warning) look, a few cat-calls, and Kat calling out that Starbuck obviously needs glasses if she thinks a young stud like Billy would want her.

The blush goes all the way down to his toes, but he doesn't let her go. He can feel how unsteady she is on her feet. "Let's get you home, Captain."

It's the best suggestion he can come up with. Get her out of there, put her to bed, go stand in a cold shower until his skin stops blushing bright red. He hates that about his skin, really. Too fair, and he'd blame his mother, but his father was the blond.

"Right." She nods, and he notices that she comes up higher than Dee did, and wonders if that's because Starbuck is larger than life, and Dee is simply ordinary.

And that's an uncharitable thought, but he can't help thinking that if he'd found Dee he wouldn't feel useful. He'd just feel hurt again, betrayed and full of sadness that the one thing in his life that seemed whole and good was simply dross. And perhaps there was a tiny bit underneath it all of satisfaction: he was leaving the card game with Starbuck.

The rumor was sure to get back to Dee.

It's easy to get Starbuck back to her quarters. They're empty, and he doesn't think about her soft cackle until she's pulled away and slammed the door, spinning the wheel before shoving rod through it to lock it in place. "Lucky me."

"What?" It's not very articulate, but he can't help it. He's never had a woman look at him in quite that way. The blush slides back across his cheeks.

"You in or you out?" Starbuck asks.

And Billy think it's very unfair, because right at this moment, he's not sure what she means. Plus, she's drunk and practically making him feel naked, and, and-- "I think you've got the wrong impression, Captain." He's amazed he managed to sound so articulate.

"Have I?"

The door thunks into his back (when did he start backing up) and she stops just short of touching him, her gaze suddenly serious. "You want out, just say it, Keikeya."

Billy swallows, suddenly aware that, kisses aside, he's really not entire sure what to do, even if he were to let Starbuck strip him in reality as well as her mind and have her wicked way with him. Which is a really stupid thing to think. Be a man, he thinks, and wonders when he got so self-mocking right before Starbuck stands on her toes and kisses him.

Or tries to. She misses, lips grazing his cheek and chin. Billy catches her head with one hand and leans down enough to kiss her gently, just for a moment, wondering what kissing Starbuck is like.

Fire, he thinks. And that's a cliche, too. But it's all he can come up with--or maybe he's blushing again at the way his body is mocking him, reacting in what could be considered perfectly natural ways to a healthy young woman. One who kisses like she's not planning on surviving the kiss.

"Wait," he mutters.

She nips at his chin, but pulls back. "Leaving?"

"No." He catches her chin and kisses her again, wondering hazily if this is because he's trying to get back at Dee. And then he isn't thinking at all.

She only stops once, after dragging his pants down, to stare for a moment. And he has no idea what to say when she touches him, but he's blushing again and eager and desparate, and wishing he had a frakking clue how to make this work for her.

When he comes much too quickly, groaning into her shoulder, she laughs as if it's ok (but it isn't). When he tries to apologize, she kisses him, grabs his hand and demonstrates exactly how to fix the problem.

It scares the crap out of him when he gets it right and she bites his shoulder to keep from crying out.

"Sorry," he mumbles again as she pants beneath him.

"Yeah. Whatever." A hand shoves at his shoulder.

Billy drags himself up and off the table, sticky and sweaty, and wondering if the was a really frakking stupid idea after all. "I--"

"You didn't--" But she stops before her question finishes and just stands there, looking at him.

"Look, I--"

"Shh." Her hand covers his lips and she shakes her head.

Standing there, with her half-naked and his pants around his ankles and her hand on his mouth while she still looks so bloody gorgeous is almost too much, and Billy's hand catches at her shirt.

"No." Her hand drops and she steps back. "No repeat performances, Keikeya."

And he blushes, because he's suddenly very aware that the legendary Starbuck just frakked his virginity away, and he showed very poorly, and he's still hung up on Dualla, and this was all a frakking stupid mistake, and-- "Sorry." His pants aren't too hard to pull up, though he'd prefer a shower.

"Hey." Her hand touches his wrist, and he looks up. "Don't sweat it, Billy. It's just sex."

Just sex. Yeah. He tries to smile and fails. Getting away is now a very good idea. Because he's not entirely sure if it is okay, anymore. A shower would be good. A shower, and a trip to Cloud Nine where he could (maybe) forget this ever happened.

There isn't enough alcohol in the entire fleet for Starbuck to forget, he figures.

He wonders, as he cleans himself off in the silent washroom, if frakking Starbuck was a way of getting back at Dualla. He thinks that would be petty.

Looking into the mirror, he's pretty sure he's got it in himself to be just that petty, though.


Kara would be looking after Lee, but Dualla is, so she figures turnabout's fair play.

Besides, in some ways, this was all her fault.

Not that everything's all her fault--Starbuck's not that frakking special. But almost everything is. Everything she touches, after all, turns to ruin.

The morgue's cold when she steps inside and shuts the door. Earlier, she knows the President and the old man were here. One crying, one trying to comfort. She thinks it's fitting that they left with his arm at her waist. Or maybe she's just tired of fighting amongst the family.

The first drawer she ignores--Sharon Valerii's body is back where it belongs, but she doesn't need to see it to know her friend is dead.

The fourth contains Keikeya, William S.

He looks like he's sleeping.

It's a frakking stupid thing to think, and Kara tries to ignore the tears pricking her eyes. He was just a kid. Just a god-damned kid.

At least she hadn't shot him, she thinks grimly.

She might as well have, though.

Yeah. Starbuck and her magic touch. "Hey, Keikeya." She can give him the benefit of not calling him a kid. He's earned that. Earned it long before he fell into her bed and got frakked.

Maybe it's easier to cry over him than others because he's a kid, she thinks.

But she's not going to cry. Not here and now. Crying is something she can't afford. Emotions like sadness slow her reactions down (so does the booze, but that at least numbs the pain for a time), she can't afford it. "Damn you," she whispers. "Why the frak did you have to try to be a hero, Billy?"

Again, no answer. And Starbuck needs a drink. The drawer closes with a click and she's out of the morgue, almost running as she heads for her locker. There's still a bottle of ambrosia there. She can bury herself in it.

Maybe then she'll forget.