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Beyond - Legends Exile From Tesserone

Discussion in 'Fan Fiction- Before, Saga, and Beyond' started by Vehn, Apr 8, 2018.

  1. Vehn

    Vehn Jedi Master star 4

    Sep 14, 2009
    Title: Exile from Tesserone (AU, OC)
    Author: Vehn
    Timeframe: 290 ABY and Beyond
    Characters: The members of the Vehn family (All OC’s)- some new characters thrown into the mix.
    Genre: Political drama, crime thriller, Star Wars noir

    Notes: This story picks up immediately after Fields of Tesserone which concludes in 289-290 ABY.

    Tesserone, Roon

    Carley Vehn, born Kolvaard, stormed out of the Vehn family ranch known as Tesserone in a fit of anger. She'd never been so furious. Her mechanical hands whirred and clinked as she opened them wide and then clenched them shut. She could hear the voices of her adoptive parents yelling at her pleading with her to stay. Hot tears zipped down her face as she leapt into the speeder, fumbled with the keys that jingled in her pocket, let out a few choice words, and then zoomed away in a cloud of dust and gravel.

    She didn't know where she was going as she gunned the throttle and urged the speeder closer to the red line. The engine protested as she took a dangerous course around hairpin turns, across the flat Laweeya Prairie highway, towards the distant lights of Nime. The destination didn't matter at this point. She only knew one thing: she had to leave the Vehn family behind for good. They'd betrayed her. They'd lied to her. They'd taken her from the only family she'd ever had.

    Carley accelerated around another tight curve, engine groaning, gravel flying in all directions, and felt the speeder shudder and began to drift toward the apex of the curve right toward a parked speeder. She quickly killed the throttle and fought to maintain momentum as her headlights illuminated the scared look of an individual that knew his time was up. That knew he couldn't run even if he'd wanted to try.

    Carley's eyes went wide and she punched the brakes.


    Carley heard the sickening crunch of the body hitting the hood of her speeder, slamming onto the transparisteel windows with a loud cry. The window instantly cracked in the pattern of a spider web. The speeder ground to a halt as it impacted the parked speeder and forced it off the road. Steam and flame rose up from the engine compartment as Carley hopped out on shaky feet and ran around to the mangled front.

    "Oh, maker, no," Carley breathed as she put a hand over her mouth, "oh frak no!"

    She recognized the individual she'd hit. His name was Dyrk Ryvers. They'd competed against one another at Federation speedway and again at the school she'd started on Nunurra. His upper torso was pinned hard between the two speeders and his face was a bloody mess. He groaned as he slowly regained consciousness.

    "Dyrk, Dyrk," Carley cried out, "I'm so sorry! I didn't think anyone else would be out here. I didn't think--"

    "Carley..." Dyrk weakly replied and then he happened to look down and what he saw made him very afraid.

    "Dyrk, I'll call an ambulance, I promise," Carley whispered as she grabbed a hold of his bloody hand.

    "I'm torn in two, Carley," Dyrk said his face ashen. "I'm torn in two."

    Carley panicked. She put her hands up to her head and violently paced back and forth. She didn't know how to fix this. She didn't know what to do. She could tell by the dim light of the one remaining headlight on her speeder that the only thing keeping Dyrk alive, so far, was that he was pinned between the two speeders.

    "Carley...!" Dyrk called out again.

    Carley snapped. She reached inside the glove compartment of her speeder and pulled out a blaster pistol. She was below the legal age to own a blaster. She checked the energy cell. She had two shots left. She only needed one. She knew what needed to be done. The same thing she'd done to several animals over the years. It wasn't an easy decision but it was the right decision.

    Carley stood near Dyrk, who gazed upon her with pleading eyes, and raised the blaster pistol to his head. "I'm sorry, Dyrk. I'm so sorry!"

    "Help me," Dyrk repeated this time in a more frantic tone.

    "I am helping you," Carley said as she pulled the trigger.

    Carley fled into the night.



    She was only 17 years old.

    Crseih Station
    Independent Systems
    One Week Later

    19 year old Jack Vehn finished another drink of Corellian whiskey and rapped the bar counter for another one. He was getting a real good buzz on and the Twi'lek female three seats down and around the curve of the bar was looking mighty fine. He felt more liberated than he had in a long while. Finally able to cut loose, finally able to be himself, now that he no longer was under oath, no longer under secrecy, no longer a Phantom.

    "I'm going to have to cut you off, sir," the droid stated matter of factly. "My analysis of your body language indicates that you are intoxicated."

    "You're going to pour me another," Jack said.

    "I'm sorry, sir. Rules are rules," the droid replied.

    "Pour me another!" Jack said raising his voice.

    "Please do not raise your voice, sir, or I will have to call security," the droid said this time in a more menacing matter.

    "Fine, call security. Your liquor here sucks anyways," Jack grumbled as he searched in his pockets for the money to pay. "Don't expect a tip either."

    The droid tilted it's head ever so slightly and replied, "Running a bit low on credits, are we?"

    "I've got your damn money," Jack said as he stood up from his seat and thrust his hands deep into his pockets.

    He was empty.

    Jack gave a loose smile and looked around the bar as security closed in to remove him. Somebody must've swiped him during a trip to the bathroom. He was cleaned out. He had nothing. Security guards edged closer. He saw one of them draw his weapon for extra insurance.

    "I've got your money," Jack repeated, "somewhere around here I've got your money."

    A pair of credits thundered their way onto the counter. "Consider his debt paid," a young woman's voice said from behind Jack.

    "Thank you. Have a good evening sir and might I recommend if you're driving you call a taxi?" the droid said as it scooted away to serve another patron.

    "I'm fine!" Jack said in a slightly slurred voice. "I'm just fine."

    He felt a strong grip wrap around his arm. "Come with me," the young woman urged.

    Jack was forced into a corner booth in a darkened section of the bar. A glass of water was placed in front of him. He stared lazily down at the ripples of the water from the impact of the glass hitting the table top. He looked up as the young woman sat down across from him.

    "Sober up, Jack," the young woman said, "we've got a lot of work to do."

    "Do I know you?" Jack asked squinting in the semi-darkness.

    "We used to be family," the young woman said leaning forward so that half of her face was illuminated. "My name's Carley. Carley Kolvaard."

    "Unfortunately, I don't have any family," Jack said.

    That was partially true. He had cousins. He had an aunt: Verity. Beyond that, though, well, it was slim pickings. The Vehn family wasn't that prolific. They'd expanded a bit in recent years but they weren't as large as some other families such as those that came from Bakura. He hadn't met all of the new additions to the Vehn family. He lived a bit of a sheltered life between his time with the Phantoms and his limited time on Druckenwell before enlisting.

    Carley Kolvaard grunted and said, "That makes two of us."

    "What brings you out to Crseih Station, Carley?" Jack asked feeling the effects of the alcohol wearing off a bit.

    "I made a mistake. A really bad mistake. I've been on the run for over a week. Someone who knew you told me that you have a ship," Carley said.

    "Had a ship," Jack corrected. "Mine was stolen from me by someone very powerful and dangerous. A warlord. Why do you need me, anyways?"

    "I need to hitch a ride to the Republic. I need to start my life over. I need to start again. I heard your ship had a special pass that allowed it to go across the border," Carley explained.

    Jack laughed. "Special pass? The only thing special about my ship is that it belonged in the Vehn family for two centuries. She's called the Kyriad. Named after some ancient princess or something along those lines. I don't have special rights to Republican space. Now, is there something else you want or are we done here?"

    Carley looked away for a brief moment and then returned her gaze to Jack. "I want revenge."

    Jack leaned forward, "We all do. I want revenge against the warlord who took my ship!"

    "And I want revenge against the parents who wronged me of my rights," Carley replied.

    "I take it you were adopted?" Jack asked.

    "Against my will," Carley replied.

    "Right," Jack said as he finished his water, "against your will. How convenient."

    Jack sat back and studied Carley for a moment. She was young, idealistic, beautiful. She was also frantic, scared, and dangerous. She was a strange combination of ready for the adult world and in so over her head it made him sick. He wanted to tell her to go home. He wanted to tell her to make things right with her adoptive parents.

    "Quests for revenge rarely turn out well," Jack said, "but for the right amount of money I could be convinced to take up a cause."

    Carley slipped a datapad across the table to Jack. He scanned the figures and when he finished examining the details of said figures he extended a hand to Carley Kolvaard, the woman who'd paid his tab.

    "You help me get my ship back, I'll help you sort out your family affairs," Jack said.

    "Deal," Carley replied taking Jack's hand in her own.

    "Now," Jack said, "let's start planning, shall we?"

    Tag: @Trieste; @jcgoble3
    Last edited: Apr 8, 2018
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  2. Trieste

    Trieste Force Ghost star 5

    Apr 10, 2010
    When seeking revenge, you know what they say about grave digging... :D
    Vehn likes this.
  3. jcgoble3

    jcgoble3 Jedi Grand Master star 5

    Nov 7, 2010
    This sounds very different and very fun. I look forward to what will surely be a roller coaster ride. Bring it on!
    Trieste and Vehn like this.
  4. Vehn

    Vehn Jedi Master star 4

    Sep 14, 2009
    One Month Ago
    290 ABY


    Starlight gently cascaded across the pristine hull of the Resurgence class Star Destroyer Invictus as it rested in the strong vice lock grips of an orbital space station. A motley collection of frigates, cruisers, and other capital ships from various centuries were also docked at this particular space station. A space station that had been built in the decades after the fall of the Almanian Empire.


    Taaya Heraat, older sister of Rayna who led the forces of the Eastern Centrality, stood on the bridge of the Invictus and surveyed the fleet that she had built. She knew there was power here in the stars but she also knew there was much work still to be done. She would not rest on her political victories just yet. After all, her hands were still wet with the blood of her rivals. She had just completed the Great Purge and murdered those who would dare rise up against her accession. The military had fallen into place and pledged their fealty. Her rule was complete. Her word was final. Her authority supreme.

    Taaya's eyes drifted down toward Almania and the words of its history came back to the forefront of her mind.

    The Almanian Empire was a short lived secondary government that had split away from the Galactic Federation of Free Alliances shortly before the onslaught of the Neo-Sith War in the early 200's ABY. Almania had fought hard against the Sith but ultimately succumbed to their technological advantages and military prowess. The capital, also of the same name, was razed to the ground in 212 ABY and the Sith left nothing behind. A handful of survivors fled and eventually returned to resurrect their government after the war ended. The resurrection was short lived as by 218 ABY the Almanian Empire collapsed completely after a palace coup overthrew the last of the leaders.

    A mass exodus ensued following the coup and Almania and its empire fell into total ruin and disappeared from most star maps. It's great riches were lost ot time and history. A decade ago, Taaya rediscovered Almania and its myriad of hidden riches. These riches were used to fund a private military force that could be capable of challenging the regional powers in the eastern Outer Rim. Taaya knew that such riches and power was the only way to protect her family and its political interests.

    "Commander Heraat," Safira, her long time aide whispered, "news from the Eastern Centrality."

    "What news?" Taaya asked as she quietly reviewed reports from the crews that continued to extra riches from the surface. The work was never ending.

    "Your sister, Rayna," Safira replied, "is dead."

    Taaya did not respond. She stared hard through the transparisteel windows of the Invictus. A single tear slipped down her face. Rayna was dead. The only other member of her family who truly understood how she thought. The only other member of her family that she had ever loved. They had been close since birth. That was to be expected. They were twins.

    "Plot a course for Tund. We leave at once!" Taaya said.

    "At once, Commander Heraat," Safira replied.


    Capital of the Eastern Centrality

    Taaya heard the broken glass of Peace Hall crunch underneath her boots as she made her way into the great throne room. A fight had taken place here. She could tell from the footwork encased in dust all around her. A fight between two beings skilled in the art of deception and close quarters combat. Perhaps there were answers here as to how her sister had been killed.

    Taaya spotted the body of her sister resting below the great throne chair in a pool of her own blood. She could tell from the wound that the weapon had been a physical blade. Such weapons were rare but she knew the way they killed. A sharp stab to a vital organ and life quickly left. It was not the most honorable way to die.

    Taaya knelt beside Rayna's bodyand cradled her head in her arms. For the first time since hearing the news grief overcame her and she whailed and smacked her fist against her chest. Tears flowed freely down her face as she happened to look down and notice that Rayna's hands and feet were bound together with energy cuffs. She'd been murdered like a captive, like a prisoner of war, without a chance to defend herself. There was something else, as well, bruising along the arms and legs indicating blunt trauma.

    "We must go, Commander Heraat," Safira urged, "Western Centrality forces are closing in and we cannot reveal our existence to the galaxy quite yet."

    Taaya kissed Rayna's forehead and then scooped up her sister's body in her arms. She staggered toward her waiting shuttle and quietly vowed to herself that she would discover who took her sister's life and make them pay.

    Tag: @Trieste; @jcgoble3
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  5. Trieste

    Trieste Force Ghost star 5

    Apr 10, 2010
    And now we have a formidable opponent! :D
    Vehn likes this.
  6. Vehn

    Vehn Jedi Master star 4

    Sep 14, 2009
    Tesserone, Roon

    "This can't be happening," Kurt Vehn said as he ran a hand through his hair and sat down on the living room sofa.

    "Carley would never do this," Victoria added, "she's not a killer. She's not a murderer."

    "Evidence at the crime scene suggests she lost control of her speeder," Federation Intelligence Officer John Norden said. "The impact bisected the victim in two. Coroner says he was still alive after the impact. We believe she killed him with a blaster pistol as a mercy shot. There's tracks running into the woods and then they disappear. Any reason why she was taking off from this estate in such a hurry?"

    "Maker," Kurt cursed, "I can't believe this. Look, we got into a fight. It was bad. I've never seen her blow up on us like that."

    "Regarding?" Norden asked.

    "Carley is adopted," Victoria explained, "and she wanted to know more about her biological parents. We told her everything we know."

    "Not everything," Kurt mumbled.

    "What did you withhold?" John asked.

    "The identity of her birth mother. It was for her own protection. You see she is a...." Victoria explained but Kurt couldn't hear as he was standing closest to a generator that kicked on at the back of the house. When the generator kicked off John was nodding his head and jotting down notes on his datapad.

    "What? I missed something," Kurt said but Victoria shook her head.

    "I see. And that conversation was enough to send her into a panic where she accidentally killed someone?" Norden asked.

    "I'm not going to answer that," Kurt snapped, "why is Federation Intelligence asking about Carley, anyways? Shouldn't Nime County Sheriff's office have jurisdiction?"

    John Norden nodded in agreement, "Yeah, they should. Except for one small detail."

    "What detail?" Victoria asked.

    "Dyrk Ryvers," John explained, "we've gone through galactic databases on this one. Cross referenced our records with other galactic governments. It's not his real name. Whomever he was, whoever he worked for, they kept his identity locked down tight. Usually that indicates foreign agent. Federation Intelligence was brought in because Dyrk also had a tattoo on his left forearm. It's not Black Sun or any of the other powerful galactic syndicates. It was something we haven't seen before."

    "You have a picture?" Victoria asked, "I'm a bit of an expert on symbology around here."

    John reluctantly reached into his pocket and showed a picture of the tattoo to Victoria and Kurt. Victoria covered her mouth upon seeing the image. "You know that symbol?"

    Victoria nodded. "It belongs to the Heraat clan. You know, Rayna Heraat, leader of the Eastern Centrality? Yeah, well, that symbol is what they brand all their soldiers and operatives with upon initiation. Dyrk, or whoever he is, was an operative working for the Heraat clan. I'll bet my money on it."

    "That explains why we weren't able to trace the symbol," John said, "we don't have a lot of actual documentation on the Eastern Centrality and very few people inside the Federation are familiar with their methods. We haven't actively started any military operations against them that I am aware of and that explains why the military didn't respond to our queries."

    "So she's innocent, then?" Kurt asked.

    John shook his head, "That's not the way it works. She killed someone and ran. She must be brought to justice."

    "So she killed some gang banger," Victoria complained, "whose going to miss this kid?"

    John pocketed his datapad and rested a hand on his blaster pistol, "No one. No one is going to miss Dyrk Ryvers except his boss who may or may not be Rayna Heraat. We found a note on his body written in an ancient tongue. We're translating it right now but we think its from the top. We know Dyrk had been casing Carley for awhile now. Planning his move. This is bigger than a simple murder, guys. A small incident like this between the Eastern Centrality and the Federation could spark a conflict."

    "So what happens next?" Kurt asked.

    John turned to leave and then paused at the door, "I go after her and I bring her before a Federation court."

    "You don't even know where to start looking," Victoria pointed out.

    "Course I do," John said, "the independent systems. It's where people always run when they're trying to get away."

    Tag: @Trieste; @jcgoble3
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  7. Vehn

    Vehn Jedi Master star 4

    Sep 14, 2009
    Crseih Station
    Observation Deck C

    "So what's so important about your ship that you want it back so badly?" Carley asked as the pair walked the extravagant concourse of Crseih Station.

    "The Kyriad?" Jack said, "It belonged to an ancestor of mine. Derek Vehn. He was born on Adumar, spent most of his life on Ord Mantell, delivered supplies to the Jedi during times of need, fought against the Sith in the Neo-Sith war with Almania when the ship was destroyed over Taris by the Sith fleet in 214 ABY."

    "So how is that you still have an intact ship out there when it was destroyed?" Carley asked.

    "Family members gathered scraps and used their money to rebuild a Venator-class Star Destroyer. They found the original blueprints for the Kyriad locked in a safe at the family estate on Tesserone," Jack said.

    "Sounds like the ship is one of a kind," Carley said, "but how did you lose it?"

    "I was working on an archaeological project on Trian and when I took my shuttle back into orbit the Kyriad was gone," Jack said, "I had no way to track where it went or who might've taken it."

    "So what did you do?" Carley asked.

    "I returned to Druckenwell to generate more funds for an expedition to recover the ship. To form a search party. It was there that my life derailed completely. I was forced to join a covert military organization secretly funded by the Federation. We traveled all over the independent systems apprehending suspected enemies of the state and killing those who resisted. It wasn't the life I had planned. Not at all. I think we--." Jack started to say but was cut off by Carley.

    "We have company!" Carley said pointing beyond the observation deck as a sizable armada emerged out of hyperspace. Numerous fighters were already pouring out of the escort carriers and converging on the vulnerable space station. The space around the three Interdictor cruisers had become distorted meaning their gravity well generators were spooling up to trap fleeing vessels.

    "I had hoped we were safe here," Jack said in a defeated tone, "I was wrong."

    "Safe from what?" Carley asked.

    "Warlord Taaya Heraat," Jack replied with a grimace, "trust me we don't want to be here when she arrives. We need to find a way off this station, now!"


    Resurgent class Star Destroyer Invictus
    Crseih Station

    Taaya Heraat gazed upon Crseih Station with a look of contempt. Her fleet, growing larger by the day, was now ready to begin amassing more territory in the name of her family. They'd operated outward from Almania and swept across the eastern expanse. Now they were targeting one of the trade hubs that brought a considerable amount of goods and revenue to the eastern Outer Rim. After all, she had an army to feed.

    Taaya bowed her head as the distant star's light illuminated the bridge. She could almost feel the warmth of the star as she closed her eyes and said a quiet prayer to the gods on behalf of her sister. She hoped that Rayna had journeyed well to the afterlife. The death of her sister greatly saddened her and was now adding fuel to her conquering fire. Her campaign now was beyond territorial acquisition, it was after all, about the one thing that only mattered: revenge.

    Taaya had reviewed security footage from Peace Hall on Tund. She was surprised to see that Eleanor Vehn and her brother Austin had journeyed to Tund with a small escort to speak directly to Rayna. She'd been even more surprised to read the communication log from Eastern Centrality military headquarters that Rayna had reached out for peace with the Western Centrality and their military backers: the Federation. The war, arguably, had become a quagmire. The Eastern Centrality had been no more closer to victory than its counterpart.

    Something, or someone, was behind the sudden change of heart. Taaya racked her mind through her own mental database of the various powerful factions in the independent systems. Something was off here. Rayna would never let herself be manipulated by anyone. That wasn't like her. Plus, there was something off about the execution of her sister. The footage didn't link up with the narrative on the ground.

    It appeared to Taaya that Eleanor Vehn had ordered her brother, Austin, to strike the killing blow. Just as Austin brought his lightsaber down across Rayna's head the footage skipped a bit and the next sequence showed Eleanor and Austin standing over Rayn's body. Taaya remembered how Rayna had looked. There'd been an impact point through the chest, not across her back or neck as had been indicated in the footage. At this point, she didn't know whom to trust. The footage had clearly been edited but had it been edited to support Eleanor's position or by someone else at Peace Hall?

    "All vessels are incapable of making the jump to hyperspace," Safira said, "Crseih Station is yours."

    "Excellent. Prepare a boarding party," Taaya ordered.

    "At once, Commander," Safira replied.

    30 Minutes Earlier
    Crseih Station
    Main Concourse

    John Norden casually reached inside his jacket pocket and felt for his pistol. His fingers wrapped around the reassuring grip as he reminded himself what kind of mission he'd chosen. A dangerous one. He let go of the pistol and began his tour through the main concourse of Crseih Station. He'd never been this far beyond Federation space. Never been this far beyond the tightly controlled jurisdiction that was his stomping grounds.

    Species and droids of all kinds and genders walked in every direction. Some were on their way to catch a flight to somewhere else while others were just coming in to grab a bite to eat, refuel, and go on their way. Still some beings lingered and had the look of folks who'd been calling Crseih Station home for a little too long.

    John rested against a nearby pillar, out of the main flow of sentient traffic, and checked his datapad. He'd been able to track Carley's course fairly easily. The young teenage girl hadn't had a thought to cover her tracks. She'd made a direct bee line from Roon to Crseih Station and that's what had his interest piqued. Why here? Crseih Station wasn't really a central hub on the way to anywhere. Sure, it got a decent amount of foot traffic but typically from the crowd that wanted to disappear rather than be found. She had to have known that Federation security forces would be pursuing her into the independent systems, interplanetary law be damned.

    John put his datapad away and surveyed the large crowd. He could sense that Carley was here. Years of being in the business of hunting people had taught him a few tricks of the trade, had honed his skills, had made him quite formidable with a pistol and a pair of cuffs. His eyes darted up and down the wide boulevard of the main concourse of Crseih Station. Past the booths of vendors, past the customs and immigration control centers, past the refugee sector, he took it all in and in so doing noticed something peculiar. Everyone traveled light on Crseih Station. That could mean only one thing: threats were constant and Crseih Station wasn't as secure as the advertisements would have one believe. The devil, as the popular saying went, was in the details.

    A loud alarm blared throughout the station. Thousands of beings stopped in their tracks and looked upward beyond the bulbous transparisteel windows of the main concourse. The bright light of a distant star suddenly was blacked out by the deadly shapes of a warlord's armada. John felt a chill slip down his spine. He couldn't rely on the Federation military out here. He couldn't rely on any support to back him up against this new threat. Only his wits and street savvy could save him now.

    "This is Warlord Taaya Heraat of the Heraat clan," a voice boomed over the concourse speakers, " I am here because I seek answers. Answers regarding the death of my sister, Rayna Heraat, leader of the Eastern Centrality. Anyone who has knowledge of this event is to meet me in the main concourse in five minutes. If no one steps forward I shall destroy Crseih Station and all ships currently trapped by my Interdictors."

    The main concourse flew into a panic. Beings ran in every direction. John stayed near his pillar and scanned the crowd. His first pass was golden. He had made visual contact on Carley. She was running right toward him, a look of fear on her face. He tensed as she neared. He would have to be quick. He leapt from his pillar and tackled her to the ground.

    "Carley Vehn," John said as he held her down, "you're under arrest for the murder of Dyrk Ryvers. By the powers vested in me by the Federation government I am to bring you before a jury of your peers on Roon for sentencing."

    Carley squirmed and screamed. John was close to putting the set of energy cuffs on her wrists when he felt a strong impact across his face. His vision swam as he fell off Carley and slid across the floor. He shook his head and looked at where he had been. There, standing over Carley, was someone John hadn't accounted for and someone that John had never seen. A young man, physically fit, who had the look of a professional.

    "Stay away from her," the young man barked.

    John was about to reply when an airlock nearby blew open and armed soldiers loyal to Taaya Heraat poured on through the opening. They quickly fanned out through the main concourse, their weapons at the ready, as civilians ran and hid. The smoke from the airlock blowing began to clear and that was when John first laid eyes on Taaya. She was hauntingly beautiful but also carried herself with an air of lethality. He remained on the ground. He had to play his cards right if he was going to get out of here alive.

    Tag: @Trieste; @jcgoble3
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  8. Trieste

    Trieste Force Ghost star 5

    Apr 10, 2010
    Man, it's too bad that nobody knows any Bakurans right now. They have gravity bubble technology that cuts through interdiction fields. :p
    Last edited: Apr 29, 2018
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  9. Vehn

    Vehn Jedi Master star 4

    Sep 14, 2009
    Crseih Station

    Pakuuni System

    "Safira," Taaya said.

    "Yes, Commander," Safira replied.

    "Take a contingent of soldiers and secure food, medical supplies, and anything else we need," Taaya ordered as she surveyed the concourse.

    "At once, Commander," Safira said and quickly shuffled out of the room with soldiers in tow.

    Taaya turned and addressed the crowded concourse, "I will ask you one more time. Who has here has knowledge of my sister's death?"


    "There must be someone here, anyone, who can answer my question," Taaya said, "and need I remind you that if you do not respond I will destroy this station and everyone on it."

    John Norden remained on the floor. He wasn't about to put his neck out on the line and blow his identity. He'd read the reports from Eleanor's visit to meet face to face with Rayna shortly before her death. He knew that Rayna had died under mysterious circumstances. Nobody had talked about it at Intelligence. He quietly wondered if the entire op had been covered up on purpose. Maybe it had.

    Jack Vehn stepped forward and he heard Carley let out a gasp. "I know what happened to your sister."

    Taaya's head snapped around to look at Jack. She sneered as she stepped closer to him.


    "I know what happened to your sister," Jack repeated.

    "What are you doing?" Carley questioned.

    John Norden watched quietly in silence. His hand slowly moving toward his hold out blaster beneath his jacket. He wasn't about to draw on Taaya Heraat but if he could get the jump on Carley and get away, well, he would.

    "Silence," Taaya said holding up her hand as she turned to examine Jack more closely, "explain."

    "I happen to be a pretty good slicer," Jack replied, "and I just so happened to snag unedited security footage of the death of your sister, Reyna. Believe me, I'm aware that Eleanor Vehn looks to be the perpetrator but you couldn't be more wrong. There's someone else. Someone I've never met. If you kill me, and if you kill her," Jack paused pointing back at Carley, "you'll never know the truth."

    Taaya studied Jack for a moment before jerking her head toward her security guards. "Wrap up your mission and take these two to the Invictus. See to it that they're not armed, yet."

    "Let me go!" Carley cried out as she and Jack were marched toward the airlock that connected Crseih Station to the Invictus.

    Safira returned moments later with the stolen goods from the station. Hoversled upon hoversled filed past Taaya as she resupplied her forces. Safira paused near Taaya and said, "We've acquired quite a few goods. No resistance in the station whatsoever. Everyone was cooperative."

    "Good," Taaya replied and then took one final look at the population inhabiting the main concourse, "kill everyone here and burn the station. I want to send a message that no one is safe from the Heraat clan."

    Safira hesited ever so slightly. "There's women and children, Commander. Surely they could be allowed to leave?"

    Taaya spun on her heel, eyes aflame with determination, "Don't make me repeat myself, Safira."

    "Yes, Commander," Safira replied with a crisp salute.

    Safira turned to the soldiers and barked out orders to fire on the civilians. They raised their blaster rifles and immediately complied.

    Tag: @Trieste; @jcgoble3 (a short post but it serves as a bridge for what's to come)
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  10. Trieste

    Trieste Force Ghost star 5

    Apr 10, 2010
    And one of the classic moments of myth comes to the fore: into the belly of the beast!
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  11. Vehn

    Vehn Jedi Master star 4

    Sep 14, 2009
    Crseih Station
    The Massacre

    John Norden was in pure survival mode.

    He threw a Rodian directly in front of him that caught three blaster bolts in the chest. He then spun and dove into the crowd as they were cascading to the floor in a pile of death. His legs pumped, his heart raced, as he scrambled his way out of the main concourse and out of sight of the firing squad.

    The screams of the dying echoed down the lonely corridor as he raced to his rusty old freighter. The freighter was part of his cover for doing his investigative work in the independent systems. It'd been docked in a private hangar bay well away from the main concourse for this exact reason. Nobody had seen him arrive and nobody would see him leave.

    He could hear foot traffic behind him. The heavy boots of armed mercenaries thundering through the corridors, flashes of blaster red on the pristine walls of Crseih Station, and the ever present threat of death followed right behind him. He never let up his pace as he slammed the button which opened the blast doors to the private hangar. He was so close to freedom. Nothing could stop him. Nothing at all.

    John tripped over the lowered blast door and lost his balance. He could hear the footsteps approaching around a nearby bend in the corridor behind him. He readied his blaster pistol and got a jump on the lead soldier who had no idea what'd hit him as he fell to the ground with a sizzling hole in his chest. His comrades, upset, began laying down withering blaster fire as John high tailed it down to his freighter.

    The start up sequence was shot to hell and back so he simply cold started his engines, ignoring their whining protest, and shot out of the hangar bay. He put some distance between himself and the massacre at Crseih Station and it was only until he made it to the hyperbuoy that he remembered why he'd come this far out into the Outer Rim.

    The mission. The retrieval. The successful apprehension of Carley Vehn.

    John killed the throttle and kicked the freighter into a slow rotation. Crseih Station quietly spun back into view as transports could be seen being apprehended and destroyed by Taaya Heraat's security forces. He cautiously watched as the Invictus moved away from Crseih Station and made the jump to hyperspace. All support craft and fighters soon made the jump thereafter.

    John closed his eyes and fought off the horrible image of civilians being killed. When he opened them again he knew what he needed to do. He immediately opened a secure channel to Federation Intelligence. After verbalizing his identification information he uttered the only code phrase that would fit the situation. A code phrase that could potentially deliver a Federation response.

    "Red Sunset."

    Throne Room

    Carley grunted as she was thrust to her knees by her armed escort. She felt the cool barrel of a blaster rifle against her head. One wrong move and she was a goner. One wrong move and she'd be another trophy on the wall. One wrong move and her journey of revenge would end in misery.

    "Welcome, Carley Vehn," Taaya Heraat said casually as she descended from her throne.

    "How do you know my name?" Carley questioned.

    "Carley Vehn," Taaya replied, "adopted a few years ago by Kurt and Victoria Vehn. You made a name for yourself at Federation Speedway on Roon. You had a romantic relationship of sorts with Dyrk Ryvers, whom you killed last week fleeing your adoptive parents, and your racing school on Nime was funded by a traitor of the Roon Federation known as Gabrielle Senne. All in all I'd say I know quite a bit about you."

    "Those are things that happened to me," Carley shot back, "that's not who I am."

    "Perhaps," Taaya replied, "You're a long way from Roon."

    "I needed a fresh start," Carley admitted, "I had to get away."

    "What are you running from?" Taaya asked.

    "Who says I'm running from anything?" Carley replied.

    "I do" Taaya said, "you're being followed by Federation Intelligence. You've been betrayed by your own parents. They don't want you anymore. They don't need you anymore. They have hung you out to dry because you murdered your friend."

    Carley lowered her head in shame. She'd ruined everything. She tried to block out Taaya's words, tried to fight back mentally, but the bite was too sharp and the issues too real. She had run out on her parents, she'd been forced to mercy shot a good friend, and now was wanted by Federation Intelligence in connection with his murder. She began to weep.

    "Leave her," Taaya instructed to the guards.

    The guards quietly returned to their sentry posts as Taaya descended the steps of the dais leading up to her throne. She gently placed a hand underneath Carley's chin and tilted her face to look up into her eyes.

    "Nobody will have me," Carley admitted.

    "I will have you," Taaya replied, "come, it is time I bury my sister in the ways of our people."

    Tag: @Trieste; @jcgoble3
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  12. Trieste

    Trieste Force Ghost star 5

    Apr 10, 2010
    How does Taaya know so much? It seems like she has access to more information than I would have thought for someone who seems to be a non-state actor.
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  13. Vehn

    Vehn Jedi Master star 4

    Sep 14, 2009
    OOC: Trieste, this should answer your question....

    Throne Room
    One Hour Later

    "You know a great deal about the Vehn family," Safira pointed out as she gently massaged a soothing oil into Taaya's back.

    "I've known them for decades," Taaya replied, "worked directly with them right under their noses and they never suspected a thing. I earned their trust, worked closely with their inner circle, and wore my disguise well. I took Eleanor Vehn in her darkest moment into a place of safety and confidence. I managed to climb to the highest echelons of Federation power before the causes of the Vehn family no longer aligned with my own. Before I was pushed aside."

    "Did they ever suspect your true identity?" Safira asked.

    "Never," Taaya replied, "not even to the very end."

    One Year Earlier

    Taaya Heraat opened her eyes and gasped in pain. Her chest and ribs ached as her blouse was cut open and her body armor beneath removed from her torso. Gentle hands quietly cleaned up the blood and bruises and rubbed a healing compound across her chest to expedite the recovery process. She felt a gentle thrumming underneath her back as the medical droid assessed her for any further damage. She was still in a state of shock and she knew she was not in the same location where she had been pronounced dead.

    "Welcome to the Invictus," Rayna Heraat said as she stood over the table, "sister."

    "Rayna," Taaya whispered, "did it work?"

    Rayna smiled and nodded. She swept away some of Taaya's matted, sweaty, hair from her journey and whispered, "They think you're dead. The Federation is in flux and their foreign policy is no longer focused on the Centrality."

    "They won't be easily discouraged," Taaya replied as she swung her legs over the side of the medical bed letting them dangle not far from the floor.

    "No," Rayna replied, "they won't. They will, however, be distracted enough to buy us time to finish our weapon."

    "Did you test it?" Taaya asked.

    Rayna nodded and with a sparkle in her eye she replied, "The power we are dealing with here is immeasurable. Once our weapon is fully operational we will be able to destroy the Western Centrality and keep the Federation far from our borders."

    "At last we shall have the security we've dreamed of for years. At last our clan shall be respected throughout the Outer Rim. The best part of all this is that they never suspected a thing," Taaya said.

    "Why would they? Your cover was perfect and to be on the job for as long as you were," Rayna pointed out as she assisted Taaya to her feet. "You had nothing but their trust."

    "It wasn't easy," Taaya replied, "and there were times where I nearly came out from my cover to get back to you. It was particularly hard when President William Ypres shot me at point blank range. I'm just thankful he aimed for my chest rather than my head."

    The last thing Taaya remembered was being called to President William Ypres' office. She'd had a disagreement. He'd suspected her of treasonous behavior and at that point her cover had come to its natural conclusion. The damage to the Federation had been done. The damage to the Vehn family was even more severe as seeds had been planted in the young, and impressionable, mind of Carley Vehn that her adoptive parents were not all that they appeared to be on the surface. He'd shot her three times in the chest at nearly point blank range.

    "Come, sister," Rayna said, "we have a war to fight and there's so much I have to show you. Welcome home."

    Present Day

    Taaya's massage ended and she slipped off the massage table and into a comfortable robe. She tied the robe around her waist and looked out the large windows of her personal quarters over the gleaming world of Almania. She'd ordered the fleet back to its home base in part to throw off any pursuits by galactic powers and in part because she needed a moment to figure out her next move.

    "What was your name?" Safira asked bringing Taaya a warm cup of tea.

    "My name?" Taaya replied taking the cup of tea and allowing herself a moment to enjoy the soothing herbal fragrance.

    "The name used for your cover?" Safira clarified.

    Taaya sipped at her tea and smiled ever so slightly, "I was a Senator for the Republic and then went on to be Vice President of the Roon Federation. I had the trust of the Vehn family in particular Eleanor after she murdered fellow Senator Rhom Cardaas. I watched as the Vehn family grew more powerful and more secure with every passing day and I played their political enemies against one another until I could make my move. A move that came to fruition when Thaddeus Karr was elected President of the Roon Federation a few months ago. He's a weak leader. Selfish, narcissistic, and prone to its of rage. He's incapable of challenging the Heraat clan and incapable of projecting Federation power on the galactic stage.

    "I knew Eleanor would will herself into retirement and I gently guided former President Ypres to do the same even after my death. I worked closely on Carley Vehn's fears and anxieties when I helped fund her racing school. She was so vulnerable and ripe for the taking. I knew one day she would come before me in her hour of need. In her hour of loneliness. I came so close to starting a shooting war with the Republic and now I stand aboard the most powerful warship in the galaxy with nothing but strength and power at my fingertips."

    Taaya paused and took another sip of her drink.

    "My name, dearest Safira, was Gabrielle Senne."

    Tag: @Trieste; @jcgoble3
    Last edited: Jun 23, 2018
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  14. Trieste

    Trieste Force Ghost star 5

    Apr 10, 2010

    I guess you need to watch the body be incinerated before you make any assumptions!
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