In the Galactica pilots' quarters, Lee is packing up his stuff to go take command of Pegasus as Kara watches and chats with him. "You realize you're screwed, right? All the pressure, the responsibility, the sleepless nights, all the officers giving you a hard time." Lee smiles:"Yeah, well, it could be worse. You could be my CAG." Starbuck laughs and stretches against the bunk: "I'm gonna stay here and be Galactica's CAG. Something about wanting to keep an eye on me." I guess we'll never know what their jobs were. At least we know now. I don't even know why I care. Lee laughs and she gives a long-suffering smile: "Well, you and Colonel Tigh have a lot of fun at those early-morning briefings. 'Cause the XO's a lot of fun first thing." Starbuck's like, one hangover to another? He's a cakewalk after the horror of Garner. Lee bumps her chin and cheeks with his giant red boxing gloves; it's very intimate and sweet and normal. Starbuck thinks, sad, and spits it out, looking up into Apollo's eyes: "Congratulations. Really." He looks at her -- mirroring his reaction to Dualla at the beginning, about his first random promotion in this episode -- like, "Stop being a pussy, dude." She stands and sticks out her hand. (She's a Captain? And she always hauls him back, and vice versa? Is that the "Captain's Hand" thing? Or is it the thing about the First Mate sitting at the Captain's right hand? Last week I got so concerned about who was and was not a "Sacrifice" that I ended up going off the deep end with it. This week, the only two Captains are Case and Thrace, and I'm not going there.) (Yet.) Starbuck and Apollo shake and do not let go: "Congratulations."
Apollo looks at Starbuck's face, into it and at it at the same time. "I know why I was mad at you, Kara." Because you wanted to acknowledge audience concerns that she suffers no culpability for her actions? Because I kind of feel you're about to just talk directly at us through the screen for a sec, babe. "A simple 'thank you' would have been sufficient," she laughs, but the Exposition Infection, it is strong. "Because you were doing what you always did," he says, smiling sexily. "Buck authority, and get away with it." Starbuck drops her eyes. "I, too, have felt victimized by my canonical lack of accountability." "I bucked authority once," he continues, "and I almost lost everything." Was this right around the time of your birth? Because you've been wound pretty tight since right around then. No, I'm kidding. He's talking about the sedition and terrorism he perpetrated at the right hand of a dangerous cult leader -- and the things he most immediately lost were Bill and Kara. "Whoa, yeah," she thinks. Lee: "So I guess when I showed up on Pegasus, and there you were doing it all over again..." She looks down again. "I don't know. Pissed me off." He looks deeply, lovingly into her face. "Doesn't make a lot of sense, does it?" Starbuck grins, but not exactly: "You should hear the way my brain works sometimes." One thousand times word, dude. They smile sweetly, almost crying. She stiffens her spine and looks him head-on, nearly pleading to wipe the last bit away. "Are we okay?" But Lee's done, and flips back to her last line. "...You have a brain?" She slaps him with the other hand -- they're still holding onto each other. Always. They embrace. "Yeah. Yeah, we're okay." They drop their hands and hold each other tightly. It's intensely sweet, and relief of a stress I didn't know I was carrying. Lee says the word "Forever" into Kara's hair, and it sounds like a deep laughing breath. You wouldn't notice it unless you were looking for it, and you might decide it didn't really happen, except Kara's face relaxes completely at this, and her body folds into his, back to complete trusting calm and love. Better: tested. Their conflict of not getting each other's back has been resolved, and the only person that died was Garner. Who sucks. The Captain's hand has brought Lee back. And it will never let go.