1. Welcome to the new boards! Details here!

  2. Hey Fanficers! In fixing the prefixes something happened and now you can't edit titles. Don't panic! We're looking into what happened and trying to fix it.
  3. 2017 Fan Fiction Awards - Nominations

Beyond - Legends Life and Limmie: Senator Tales (OC)

Discussion in 'Fan Fiction- Before, Saga, and Beyond' started by Jedi Gunny, Apr 11, 2013.

  1. Jedi Gunny

    Jedi Gunny Yahtzee Host star 9 VIP - Game Host

    May 20, 2008
    What gives you that idea, jcgoble3? :p

    Admiral Volshe, epithree, JM_1977, Trieste

    Two months later

    The room was rather large, the figure noted as they walked through the dark hallway ahead of it. It certainly looked like the lair of a rich mega-criminal; there were expensive items literally strewn all over the place, the spoils of many a heist gone right. If the police could ever crack this place, they would easily be able to convict the mastermind, Fek Widor, of burglary a thousand times over. However, Widor, known as the “Mynock of Many Names” in the criminal underworld, never got caught. The man seemed to be able to blend in anywhere at will; when the police came knocking at one of his phony operations, he was able to melt back into the shadows as the operation was shut down. But then he was able to re-open somewhere else. The police finally conceded and left him alone, because there was no use chasing after what amounted to be a ghost when there were more pressing matters to attend to.

    The figure was clad in a full-body black jumpsuit, obviously ripped off the black market somewhere. A black mask covered the figure’s identity, making it difficult for Widor’s henchmen to get a reading on this newcomer. Earlier, the stranger had showed up at the compound, which on the outside looked like a derelict museum space, with a job offer. Widor, after a little persuasion, namely a thermal detonator that had almost been flipped on by the stranger, finally relented, and the stranger was able to take on this new job for their mysterious employer, most likely another criminal overlord in the Inner Rim. It made sense for Widor to take the job offer, because he could always use another client on his roll. When one was a master criminal, more thugs on the payroll meant more spoils in the end from your schemes. It made perfect sense, especially in case this one could be turned over to his side and act as a spy. Yes, maybe a spy would be the perfect way to gain the upper hand on this other crime lord.

    As the figure walked through the dark room, their eyes tried to find what they were looking for. It was a shame that they couldn’t bust this guy on theft charges, but such was life. They weren’t here to bust a criminal, even though being a criminal themselves it would have given them no greater pleasure than to dispatch a rival by any means necessary. Killing would also work, but in this case that didn’t seem to be a very prudent option on the table. So sneaking around would have to suffice.

    On the back wall, there was a large blocky tablet hanging on the wall from some bindings. The figure stopped and looked up; the molded face of Gark S’rily stared blankly through the carbonite at nothing in particular. So this was where the famed Limmie GM and superhero had ended up. What a pity no one could see him, could feel haunted by the look on his face as he faced down certain doom. So the crime-fighter had finally been defeated; what a day of rejoicing that had been in the underworld. They could go on conducting business as usual without fear of him jamming a blaster up their ass and forcing them to shut down. Without the Bothan-man, crime was once again on the rise, even in places where it had typically been kept to a minimum.

    The figure looked upon the carbonite block with an amused look, which was impossible to tell because of the helmet obscuring their features. Out of everything in the room, out of all the valuables that had just been tossed in there on a whim, this was the real prize. Surely Ciscerian Barbosa, who froze the Bothan in the first place, had been able to pay off a mountain of debt with this gem. How many crime lords could say that they had a nemesis of such caliber hanging on their wall? It was one of those show-off trophies, like a hunter would have heads mounted on the wall to display their kills. Widor obviously took pride in showing off this item, and his colleagues seemed impressed with it. Business had never been better; it was almost like having S’rily on the wall attracted more “customers” to him. Uncanny how it worked, wasn’t it?

    The figure took a look around. There was no telling what kind of security system a place like this could have. They had known about the basic security cameras hidden around the compound, but those were easily avoided if one knew the inner workings of the building. The figure was by no means a dumb brute; no, this had been intentionally planned. Putting their back against the wall, they took a few moments to collect their breath, their heart hammering away. This was their one shot; if this didn’t work . . . well, then things would get sticky in a hurry.

    The figure then pulled out a small item that looked like a globe. They then opened the item, which began to flash a soft red light in the area. This was to check for hidden cameras and traps. The sweep took several seconds to finish, and reported that nothing of the sort was in place. Widor hadn’t set any traps? This was all too easy. Closing the globe-like item, the figure moved to the side of the carbonite block. Looking back one more time just to make sure that no one was following, the figure stared down the buttons on the side of the block console. What had their employer said to do at this point? This was going to be a risky maneuver, trying to free S’rily and unleash him upon the galaxy once more. But their employer needed to get Widor out of the way. If they could get the Bothan to work for them under the guise of being friendly with the authorities, then perhaps they had a chance after all to put Widor on ice and then advance their own agenda. It all was going to depend on this mission; if not successful, then they would have to find a new strategy.

    The figure reached out a hand and hit one of the buttons. Immediately, the block came down from its moorings and gave a dull thud as it hit the floor. Luckily, it didn’t reverberate too much given the volume of items on the floor, so hopefully that hadn’t set off any alarms, visible or not. This was it; the figure could feel their hammering heart speed up another notch. Another button was hit, and the figure then stepped back a little bit. The block shuddered, and some bright white lights began to emerge out of the block. The lights began to etch an outline around S’rily’s body, like an engraver would for a trophy. As the lights kept working their magic, more and more of the carbonite just seemed to melt away in the warmer surroundings. Finally the nose of the Bothan popped out of the carbonite, the hair finally visible on his snout. The figure was ecstatic; this was working! Perhaps this plan would work after all. Moment by moment, Gark S’rily started to be unfrozen, his arms, then his legs, and finally his head, exposed to the open air once more. Finally, the carbonite was no longer restricting him, and his body fell towards the ground. However, the figure deftly caught the Bothan before he could nail the ground, turning his body over so that he was face up. Gark took a breath, but was obviously still freezing. His eyes were barely open, and he was shivering endlessly. Time was of the essence here; he had to be moved as quickly as possible.

    “Careful,” the figure said quietly, their voice modulated.

    “Wh . . . where . . . where am I?” Gark asked.

    “The hideout of Fek Widor,” the figure said.

    “H . . . how did I get here?” Gark asked, still quivering due to the cold he had experienced for the past month and a half.

    “You were frozen by Ciscerian Barbosa, and then brought here as a trophy,” the figure replied, not wavering from their answer.

    “Wh . . . who . . . who are you?” Gark finally asked.

    This answer was not met with words, but instead with a nice wet kiss right on the lips. “Someone who loves you,” Me’lin S’rily said, having taken her helmet off prior so that her voice was no longer modulated.

    “Me’lin,” Gark said weakly. “You came back.”

    “Of course I did,” the Twi’lek said. “You would have done the same for me.”

    “What’s going on?” Gark asked. “I can’t see that well.” It was true; his eyes could barely make out anything.

    “It’s hibernation sickness,” his wife replied. “Your eyesight will return in time, trust me.”

    “How long?” Gark asked.

    “Give it an hour, maybe?” Me’lin said.

    “An hour? Great,” Gark mumbled.

    “I need to get you out of here,” Me’lin said.

    “And just where do you think you’re going to go?” came an unfamiliar voice. Both Gark and Me’lin looked back to see where the voice had come from, but since Gark couldn’t see very well, it was just a voice in the blurry surroundings.

    Fek Widor came forward, some of his thugs tailing him with their blasters set to “kill”. The Aqualish looked amused at this whole thing, which was rather hard given the difficulty trying to read his species for any kind of emotion. “It’s a pity,” he said. “I had high hopes for you. But it turns out that this was your plan all along, wasn’t it? Sic the Bothan-man on me, and then take the rewards that come with it. Your employer is a hardball player, but they will find out soon enough that I don’t mince my words. I am a man of action. You will now be an example of what happens to people who double-cross Fek Widor.” He turned to his men. “Take them outside and shoot them. A firing squad of eight should be enough.”

    The next thing, both of the S’rily’s could feel themselves being roughly separated and then forced to stand. Their hands were thrust behind their backs roughly, Gark’s in addition to his continual shivering from the carbonite. He was then nailed in the gut with a hard fist, and he bent over in pain. He hadn’t forgotten the pain that would bring after having been frozen; nothing had changed since his previous situation. Only the names had changed.

    “I’m going to enjoy seeing this,” Fek said. “But, you were the perfect decoration, so I’m going to miss having you on my wall,” he said closely so that Gark could hear him. “It’s a shame, because business was booming, too. But I have no choice. Say goodbye.”

    Gark just spat on the ground in defiance. He wasn’t going to give up . . . but what could he do now? Had Me’lin acted alone here, or did she have backup? Was this going to be the end?


    Half Hour later

    Gark could feel the air against his face as he and his wife were roughly shoved outside, their hands still bound behind their backs. His eyesight was returning in time, but he still didn’t have much clarity. Everything was now a detailed blur; colors were there, but shapes were still distorted. As it looked now, it didn’t matter, because in a few minutes he would be dead. His wife had come out all the way to save him, and had just gotten her death sentence as well. At least he had been relatively safe in the carbonite . . . no, if they had to die, at least they would be together when the laser blasts claimed them both. Hopefully their deaths would not be in vain.

    After a few minutes of walking, the two were stopped in the middle of a back parking lot. Seven thugs came out of the nearby doors, jumping with anticipation. This was going to be a fresh kill, one that they could really savor. The boss sometimes ordered executions, but it had been a while, so they had itchy trigger fingers.

    “Where’s Zeke?” Gark asked.

    “He . . . he . . . left,” Me’lin said sadly. She knew exactly what was going to occur here.

    “Left? So he just abandoned you?” Gark asked, shocked. Zeke had seemed so helpful this whole time.

    “Yes,” Me’lin replied.

    Gark was astounded. Zeke had just walked away, after all he had put the Bothan through? It probably had to do with that blasted Jenna Leed, didn’t it? The stupid Bith was more worried about his girlfriend than helping the guy who had pledged support in the search for the elder Barbosa, wasn’t he? Gark couldn’t believe it; had he been the one betrayed by Zeke, the Bith wouldn’t have made it far. Gark would have choked him until he relented, or killed him, if that was what it would take. “I take it that we’re going to die?” he asked.

    “Pretty much.”

    “And this is all because of Ondal,” Gark said.

    Me’lin came in close and whispered into her husband’s ear. “Stay close, and hopefully Ondal will give us some cover.”

    “So you did have a plan for getting out,” Gark asked.

    “Not really . . .” Me’lin admitted. Her toughness was starting to wear thin, and the moment was hitting her square on. She was going to die, along with Gark, and Ondal probably wouldn’t be able to do anything about it. What could he do? It was just him against all of Widor’s forces at this point.

    “You OK?” Gark asked.

    “No,” his wife finally replied. “I . . . I gave up on you for a time there.”

    “I would have as well, but why is that terrible, exactly?” Gark asked.

    “I slept with Ondal,” Me’lin admitted quietly. Gark cocked an eyebrow; he hadn’t seen that coming. “It destroyed all of my personal integrity. Every bit came crumbling down, piece by piece. You have no idea what that feels like, to compromise everything you’ve ever worked for like that, to give yourself up so freely when you were in the midst of despair. But that’s not the only thing. To cover up our disappearance . . . I even had to send back to Coruscant some of our old honeymoon holos.”

    “You mean the ones you promised you would never share with anyone?” Gark asked. He had no idea why they kept those holos to themselves, frankly, but Me’lin had been adamant about it for some odd reason.

    “Yes, those.”

    Gark could just picture one of them in his mind. It featured both of them in it, obviously, in a much happier time in their lives. Gark was sitting on the beach, wearing a light t-shirt and shorts with no shoes. It had felt good to not have to wear shoes of any kind for once, let the fine grains of sand percolate between his toes. Sure they were scratchy, but they felt nice. He was giving the camera a smirk of some kind; it wasn’t exactly a smile, but it wasn’t unhappy either. Me’lin, wearing a tank top and athletic shorts, was draped over her husband’s shoulders, smiling as well as she could for the photo opportunity. Those had been better times, and it looked like there was no making up for it.

    A minute later, the two were forced to look the other way as the firing squad readied itself. Gark could hear the safeties being popped off of the weapons. So this was it. He was going to be gunned down by firing squad and be dead, this time for real. He had escaped death so many times he had lost count, but there was no way out this time. Undoubtedly these thugs had good aim; either that, or they were a terrible firing squad.

    “Ready?” came a barking voice. The thugs raised their weapons, ready to fire when the command was given. Gark tensed up his muscles; there was no need to do this, but his body knew what to anticipate. At least it would be a quick death, not a slow, agonizing one that everyone in the galaxy dreaded. He took one last breath, and his mind went blank. It was over.

    Then he heard a body hit the ground, and some shouts. Someone had come out of nowhere and had taken down one of the firing squad members with a hard hit to the face. The others had a double-take; what was going on? Me’lin, taking a look behind her, took the opportunity to pick the lock on the binders that held her hands and got into the fray. Gark, still somewhat unable to see, had no idea what was going on. The Twi’lek went in and smashed one of the thugs in the face, downing the Barabel with the solid hit. The other belligerent dodged the punch of a thug and then sent a punch into the gut, downing another enemy.

    “What’s going on?” Gark asked. He still couldn’t quite see; things were less blurry, but shapes were still not in focus.

    “Duck!” his wife said. Gark did as he was told, and he could feel air rush by him as an arm came swinging past. He had had enough of this; it was time for Superbothan to rise again. He let out a roar and charged the offending party, smacking the thug in the gut with a vicious headbutt that sent the enemy down to the ground. Then, seeing another enemy in his proximity even with his blurry vision, he sent out a haymaker, which was dodged, followed by a roundhouse kick that sent the enemy, a Rodian, down to the ground after a slight spin in mid-air. Even though Gark wasn’t exactly looking forward to fighting, it certainly felt good to cause some damage like that.

    As the minutes passed, his vision got better, and the action was heating up. Ondal had lost his helmet by now, and was trying to keep Widor’s thugs back by throwing punch after punch, and sometimes charging the thugs to keep them off balance. Me’lin was using a series of simple moves that Gark recognized easily; they were the moves he had been teaching her after they got married, right before she found out that she was pregnant with Galin. It was a training regimen that Nat’alia had originally taught the Bothan prior to the 272 Limmie season, back when he was still a superhero in training. That seemed like a long time ago now . . .

    A thug brandishing a blaster came rushing in at the Bothan, who swiftly sent the blaster flying with a swift kick, and then socked the thug in the jaw with an uppercut. This didn’t faze the thug, so Gark went to another step. He dodged two punches, absorbed another one, and then let the thug have it. He sent a hook into the thug’s gut, and then when the thug was bent over slightly due to the pain, then Gark brought a down cut on the thug’s head, smashing him in the skull and causing him to drop immediately and grab his head. Gark then leapt into the air and kicked the back of a thug who was tied up with Ondal.

    “Nice one,” Ondal said.

    “I oughta kill you for turning on us,” Gark said.

    “Geez, I come out all this way to rescue you, and that’s how you respond?” Ondal asked, taken aback.

    “You sold us out!”

    “No time to talk,” Ondal said, pointing. Gark could tell where he was pointing even though his vision was still shaky. Two more thugs came in, and the two men jumped back into action. Ondal clasped onto the nearest thug and tried to twist him down. Gark dodged a swinging haymaker and then pushed his fists into the thug’s gut, bringing the enemy down a notch. Gark then followed with a standard armbar into the gut, causing the thug to jump back slightly from the contact before falling over. Then Gark swung at the other thug’s jaw, causing hard contact at that moment. Ondal then smashed the thug in the face, downing their enemy.

    “Good shot,” Ondal said, nodding.

    However, things were anything but rosy. More thugs poured out of the complex, finally trapping the three belligerents in a tight circle. It was such a tight alignment that Gark’s back was pushed up against Me’lin and Ondal both of whom had their backs to each other.

    “Now what?” Me’lin whispered.

    “Excellent fight, my friends,” the voice of Widor came from through the crowd of thugs. “But all for naught, it appears. You really believed that you could escape? I’m Fek Widor; I play by my own rules, and you failed. This proves why . . .”

    Then Widor’s wind got knocked out of him, and the Aqualish went down. “Let that serve as a lesson to all of you,” came a voice. It was familiar, somehow. Too familiar. Gark squinted to look past the thugs in the circle to check his query. He could see a bulbed head protruding out of a long black jumpsuit.

    “Zeke!” Me’lin exclaimed.

    “The one and only,” Zeke said. The thugs were sick of this; this guy had wiped out their boss, so it was time that he paid the price for his interference. Several of them charged Zeke on the spot, freeing up some from the tight circle that they had formed to trap in the other three. But it provided them a chance to escape from their confinement, and the battle began again.

    “Where the hell were you?” Ondal asked as he came closer to Zeke, trying to ask this question as he was tangled up with a thug.

    “I was busy,” Zeke said. He tried to beat the crap out of a thug, but was evenly matched.

    “Why’d you even bother coming back? We had all of this under control,” Ondal spat as he downed a thug with a nice punch.

    “Let’s just say that I have incentive,” Zeke said. It was true; he desperately wanted to get Jenna back, and this was the way he was going to accomplish that.

    Gark, now fully able to see, found his back up against his wife, who he almost wanted to swing at with his elbow because he thought he had been flanked. “Together again, hunh?” Gark commented.

    “Pretty much.”

    “I see you’ve been working on your fighting,” Gark said. “It could use some work. You know, iron out the kinks . . .”

    “We’re in the middle of a fight for our lives, and you’re worried about proper technique?” Me’lin asked snidely as she sent out a kick at a thug, nailing him in the groin.

    “Fair enough,” Gark said. He dodged a swing by a thug and then sent out a brutal kick that sent the thug down onto the ground.

    Another thug came in at Gark, but the Bothan was ready. He put his arm up to block an incoming punch, and then swung around. This shot missed, but he already knew what his next move would be. The arm came around to meet one side of the thug’s head, his other arm nailing the other side. This was a perfect “clamp” technique, and the thug was nailed on both sides of the head with a solid armbar. This caused the thug to just crumple to the ground, stunned by the ferocity of the blows.

    “Get Widor!” Ondal’s voice came from amongst the fray. “He’s getting away!” Gark’s head snapped over to where a fleeing Widor was trying to get out as fast as possible. The crime lord knew that he had been bested, and was trying to beat a very hasty retreat. This was going to be the only chance of stopping Widor, because if he escaped, there would be no telling what could happen if given the time to re-organize. Gark lunged for a blaster, which had conveniently been dropped there by the thug he had just dispatched. Grabbing the weapon, he then ran up and jumped on the back of a large thug and became airborne. Bringing the blaster to bear, he aimed quickly and let off a shot. It nailed Widor in the back despite the blaster not quite being in proper range, and sent the Aqualish down to the ground, dead. Gark, for all his hard work, landed on his gut, which didn’t quite feel comfortable.

    The thugs, noticing that their boss was dead, assessed the situation. They were getting their asses handed to them here, and the tide was only turning against them. So they began to retreat in droves, not one even bothering to deal with the corpse of their former “employer” as they ran by. Blasters were dropped as they retreated, trying to get away with their lives. Fek Widor, dead? How could that be? But somehow it had happened, and they weren’t going to stick around to see what Gark and company were going to do next.

    Gark watched the thugs run for safety, a grin appearing on his face. That had done the trick; somehow, he had killed Widor, in mid-air no less. He then noticed a hand extended to him. He looked up at Zeke. “So, should I ask why you left?” Gark asked darkly. He didn’t like knowing that Zeke had abandoned the mission.

    “Don’t,” Zeke said. “I’d prefer it if we were still on good relations. Besides, I learned my lesson.”

    “Really, now?” Gark asked.

    “Really,” Zeke said. “You want up or not?”

    “Fine,” Gark said. He grabbed onto Zeke’s hand, and was pulled back up to his feet. “Good to have you back,” he finally said.

    “Look, I’m sorry for what I did,” Zeke said. “I never should have bugged out like that.”

    “No you should not have,” Me’lin said angrily. She had not forgotten the despair she had felt as she witnessed Zeke walking away, and she wanted to make sure that the Bith would not forget what had transpired at his hand.

    “But I’m back now, and you’re all alive, so I think that counts for something,” Zeke said.

    “Fat chance,” the Twi’lek said. “I ought to kill you for what you did.”

    “I just . . .,” Zeke said, but he was cut off.

    “So, not to be a buzzkill or anything, but what’s our next move?” Ondal asked.

    All eyes turned to look at Gark. The Bothan pondered for a few moments. Then, once he had an idea, he spoke. “It’s time we bring the fight to Barbosa, and get this whole mess straightened out. We got out last time in a lucky break; this time, we’re going in there, and we will mean business. Barbosa brought the fight to us last time; it’s our turn now.”
    Admiral Volshe and jcgoble3 like this.
  2. jcgoble3

    jcgoble3 Jedi Grand Master star 5

    Nov 7, 2010
    Glad to see that Gark is safe. I can't wait to see them take down the ******* that is Zeke's dad.
  3. Trieste

    Trieste Force Ghost star 5

    Apr 10, 2010
    The only thing that could have made this better would have been a certain Mandalorian being jetpacked into the mouth of some creature. ;)
  4. Jedi Gunny

    Jedi Gunny Yahtzee Host star 9 VIP - Game Host

    May 20, 2008
    Trieste, Admiral Volshe, epithree, JM_1977, jcgoble3

    Gark fiddled with his hands on the table, trying to discern their next move. It had been several days since he had been rescued from the clutches of Fek Widor and his gang, so he had plenty of time to recover from his hibernation sickness, and also got back into a normal, or what could be considered normal under these circumstances, routine. He had said days earlier that the next logical thing to do would be to take the fight to Ciscerian Barbosa and the Double Threat Duo. The only problem was how they were going to pull that off. The Duo was not a group to be trifled with, so whatever plan of action that was laid out here needed to be thought through carefully and checked for the possibility of success.

    “So what do we know?” he finally asked. “We know about the Duo’s main headquarters, we kinda know its floor plan, and we know that Widor is out of the equation now.”

    “Widor was never a part of Barbosa’s operation,” Ondal said. He was sitting on the opposite end of the table. “You were just repayment of an old debt that Barbosa owed. Widor, at least to my knowledge, was never in on this whole plan, if I’ve heard correctly.”

    “Hm, then it seems that our escape didn’t help to serve our cause very much,” Gark pondered. “I was hoping that getting rid of that guy would have . . .”

    “Would have what?” Ondal asked. “Criminals don’t follow convention. When one goes down, another one rises up. That’s the way of things in the underworld.”

    “So what do you suggest?” Gark asked. “And, just to be clear, Ondal, I still have lingering doubts about your loyalties to this whole mission.”

    “Are you still mad that I sold you out?” Ondal asked, sighing. “Look, I had no choice in the matter, all right? You may have been frozen, and that’s not exactly fun, but I had to escape with my life and leave behind all of my work on Nipseb. There’s no telling what Barbosa’s done to the place now that I’m gone. All my work may be destroyed by now in spite, especially now that we’ve escaped Widor. But that’s not to mention how terrible I felt about the whole thing. You’re my pal; selling you out was not my intention, nor am I proud of it.”

    “And then there was that thing after it,” Gark prodded.

    “Fine, I shouldn’t have done that either,” Ondal said. “Old habits die hard, OK?”

    “Enough!” Zeke stated. “We need to stop bickering and get to the point!”

    “Then what do we know, hm?” Gark asked.

    “We need to go back to their main base and take ‘em out,” Zeke said.

    “The four of us, just going in and taking down their entire operation?” Ondal asked. “You don’t get how it works. There is no way we can just waltz in and succeed. We would need a brilliant plan, the best equipment and fighters, and a hell of a lot of luck. We don’t have any of those things.”

    “I was just saying . . .” Zeke began, but Gark held his hand up.

    “Zeke’s right. We’ll eventually need to get to HQ,” Gark said.

    “But that’s suicide!” Ondal said.

    “Our odds will be long, but we have a chance,” Gark said. “We need to create a diversion first so that we can slip in to their headquarters unnoticed. Last time we had Fravid, and they were waiting for us. But we have one advantage; they don’t know where we are, and we need to use that to the fullest extent. I say we nip at their heels a little bit, gather intelligence, and then make our big assault when they are going all over the galaxy in a vain attempt to defeat us.”

    “And how do you suppose we do that?” Zeke asked.

    “Simple. We join the underworld,” Gark said.

    “What? Are you crazy?” Zeke asked incredulously. “I’m not going to do that!”

    “What other choice do we have?” Gark asked.

    “I may not like this,” Me’lin said. She had been quiet up until now. “But that’s our only option.”

    “Fine, then,” Zeke said, conceding the point. “But how?”

    “We strike at their weak spots,” Gark said. “And I know exactly where to start.”


    The guard looked out at the desolate landscape, bored out of his skull. There was nothing to do out in the wastes here. He had been hired to guard this position, but no one would dare do such a thing. It was easy money, but a boring job. Criminals typically did more interesting things like plunder and kill, and here he was, guarding a silly information bank. The only decent thing about it was its location; that was top-secret, and at least he knew that no one would stumble across it by accident on his watch.

    Then a metal bar nailed him in the face, knocking him unconscious. Zeke dropped the bar to the ground. “Someone will have heard that,” he commented.

    “Let’s hurry,” Gark said. He looked at the door; it was locked with a tight security system. “What I would give to have a thermal detonator on me right now,” he muttered, trying to decipher how to open the door.

    “You mean like this?” Me’lin asked, hanging Gark one of the small black detonators.

    “How?” Gark asked. “I didn’t think you would be one to carry these around with you.”

    “Don’t complain that I was prepared,” his wife said. “Now hurry up; we don’t want to miss our chance.”

    “All right. Stand back.” Gark set the switch and then “pulled the pin”. “Clear out!” he said, dropping the detonator on the ground and scrambling for cover. The detonator exploded, but the door remained somewhat intact. “Hm, we may need to do more work on it,” Gark commented as he approached the door again.

    “I hear voices!” Zeke said. “Quickly, move!” The four of them scattered right before the remains of the door opened, and two thugs came out.

    “What the hell happened here?” one of them asked. “Hey Brun! You out here? Brun! What the hell are you up to? Stop blowing holes in the damn door! Someone might hear!”

    Zeke looked to where Gark had been moments before, but the Bothan was on the move. He came around and sent an armbar into the chest of one of the thugs, followed by a piledriver into the back of the head for one. The other thug, who had no idea Gark was there until the Bothan was right on top of him, succumbed easily to a kick to the groin and a nice haymaker to the face. Both thugs were now on the ground, taken out easily by Gark.

    “Good work,” Ondal said.

    “Hurry!” Gark said. “There may be more of them.” The four scrambled inside the center and shut the door, hoping that they would be out of there by the time reinforcements arrived.

    The door led into an information center. The walls were literally stacked with servers, keeping track of all the Duo’s happenings. Or, at least a few of them. This place paled in comparison to the main headquarters building, but it would hopefully be enough to start piecing together the puzzle.

    Gark looked around the corner, and saw two thugs at the data center consoles. They needed to extract those files.

    “Hey Lark, is that you?” one of them asked. Gark had to recoil a little. “Why in the hell are you hiding in the shadows like that? I know you’re there, so just come out. If you’re trying to scare us . . .” But he didn’t get to finish his sentence, because Gark had thrown out two small projectiles from his utility belt, knocking both of the operators out.

    “Nice work,” Ondal said, patting Gark on the back before continuing to the consoles. He then sat down in one of the chairs. “Now, all we need to do is find the information.”

    “And hurry,” Me’lin said. “We may not have much time.”

    Ondal began to punch keys on the keyboard, and different file folders popped up as he worked. After a few minutes, he found what he was looking for. “This is it,” he said.

    “What?” Zeke asked.

    “These are the travel plans for several of the higher-ranking Duo criminals,” Ondal stated. “Barbosa isn’t on here, obviously, since this is an outpost, but I think we’ve found the next best thing.” He downloaded the files. “Now, let’s get a move on, because we have a lot to do, and little time to get it done in.”
    jcgoble3 and Admiral Volshe like this.
  5. jcgoble3

    jcgoble3 Jedi Grand Master star 5

    Nov 7, 2010
    And here we go! Love the thought of Me'lin carrying thermal detonators and being more prepared than her superhero husband.
    Trieste likes this.
  6. Jedi Gunny

    Jedi Gunny Yahtzee Host star 9 VIP - Game Host

    May 20, 2008
    jcgoble3, Trieste, Admiral Volshe, JM_1977, epithree

    Fravid Deese looked out the window as his shuttle touched down on the landing pad. It felt good to be back in good graces with the boss, he pondered. During his “exile” on Ryloth earlier, he had felt so out of touch with the Double Threat Duo’s operations, despite technically still being the second-in-command of the operation. He had no idea why they called it the Duo, exactly, since he signed on after the name had stuck, but oh well. At least then it sounded like there were two heads to try and cut off, which was always better than one. For criminals, one was never better than two, especially in terms of credits.

    He was here on rather casual business, to see how the local sect of criminals were doing on this planet. The boss had said that they were slacking a bit, and he had thus sent Fravid out to try and set the losers straight, using whatever force was necessary to do so. It wasn’t exactly a large operation, but every credit that came in was another credit that could be used to further their position in the galactic underworld, so it was vital to get top production from each one of your assets.

    “Do you have everything you need?” asked the Bimm flight attendant, who was totally oblivious to Fravid’s intentions on this world.

    “Yes, I do,” Fravid said, nodding. He was flying a commercial liner to get here to not attract attention. Since his arrival was unannounced, he wanted to make sure that he could drop in without the criminals knowing he was there. If anything was out of sync, he could bust them right then and there without giving them time to react. Things worked better this way.

    He stepped down the ramp along with the other passengers, very little in terms of luggage with him. All he had taken with him were a few datapads, just to not look suspicious. However, he was actually loaded to the teeth. He had several holdout blasters hidden in the flaps of his jacket, and carried a large carbine rifle on his back. It was difficult to keep hidden, but if he walked correctly, then it wouldn’t show to all but the keenest eyes. And who would be watching him, anyways? He was just another tourist in these clothes, nothing special.

    As he hit the street, he hailed a taxi. One particular cab came up and stopped for him. Fravid tossed his stuff in the back seat and then got into the shotgun seat.

    “Where to?” asked the human driver, who had a cap down low to hide his face. Fravid raised an eyebrow, but still went on anyways. Now, had the Duo taken time to arrange a ride for him, he could go straight to the location, but given that this was a “civilian” driver, he had to be careful. No one needed to know his destination, so he knew to get off about a half mile or so, which was located in a rather well-traveled part of town for convenience in case a criminal was tracked that far.

    “This,” Fravid said. He handed a piece of flimsy to the driver, who scanned it quickly. These directions had been pre-printed for ease of use, and had a determined drop-off point that then Fravid could use to backtrack on his way to the hideout. The spot was a small coffee shop; a quaint little place that was out of the main spotlight, but not exactly hidden, either.

    “All right,” the driver said, handing the flimsy back. “Strap yourself in.” The taxi lurched into motion and then hit the street. “So, what are you doing here, if I might ask?” the driver asked.

    “Traveling,” Fravid replied. He wanted to cap the driver for asking such a stupid question, because there was no way in hell he would reveal why he was here. But no matter; this would actually be better. Blending in was key.

    “Plenty to see here,” the driver commented before then focusing back on driving. Fravid just sat there, watching the speeders go by in the other lanes. This was a perfect plan, he had to admit. It would work like a charm, dropping in uninvited. Perhaps he could also make some profit out of this, but if not, then at least he would receive his already-considerable pay, so he wasn’t out much. Maybe a trip to a local bar would net him some cash afterwards, especially if he was in a good mood.

    For several minutes the speeder went on without either occupant saying anything. Finally the driver made a cut off the main lane, and the speeder went down the town lanes. Right here, right again, left, straight through the overpass, right again, and then another right. Fravid hadn’t been here before, but he had a feeling that he needed to know these directions. What if he forgot one? The warehouse was well-hidden, so perhaps he should have asked for better directions.

    Then the speeder went down an alleyway. Fravid frowned. The boss hadn’t said that the place in mind was anywhere near an alley.

    “Where are you going?” Fravid asked angrily. “This isn’t the way I want to go!” He started to reach for a holdout blaster in his pocket.

    “This is a shortcut,” the driver said.

    “I don’t need a damn shortcut!” Fravid yelled. “Take me to the damn location!” He gripped his blaster pistol and was ready to pull it out if the driver kept going.

    “Fine,” the driver said. The speeder stopped in the middle of the alleyway. “I’ll start backing up.” He pressed the button, but the speeder didn’t go anywhere.

    Fravid calmed down a little, but then he could feel his neck being constricted suddenly from behind, and then a black bag descended over his head. He tried to grip the pistol and do some damage, but then he was smacked in the side of the head, and fell unconscious.


    The bag was removed from his head, and Fravid struggled to see in the dimly lit room. What in the hell was going on? He finally was able to see the driver in the doorway, cap still pulled down low. “What the hell is going on?” he shouted.

    “That’s a good question, isn’t it?” came a voice. A familiar voice. Fravid turned his head to see Gark S’rily wagging his finger.

    “What? How?” Fravid yelled. “You’re supposed to be frozen!”

    “Well, it appears you’re wrong,” Gark said with a wry grin on his face. “Because I’m speaking to you right now. Now, as to why you’re here.”

    Fravid shot a glance at the driver. The man pulled the bill of his cap up to reveal Ondal Nalcrissan. “Dammit, you were crooked!” Fravid stated.

    “It’s amazing how the criminals cry foul when the same thing they do to you and get away with is pulled on them, isn’t it?” Gark said. “We pulled a little abduction, nothing more. And now that you’re here, listen up. We’ve got some scores to settle with your boss.”

    “I’m not going to help you,” Fravid said. “Never!”

    “Good thing you don’t have a choice,” Gark said. “Make sure he gets the message.” Fravid was then punched several times by Zeke Barbosa, who was standing behind him. Each jab into his side sent a jolt of pain in Fravid’s body.

    “That’s enough,” Gark finally said, and Zeke stopped. “Are you going to cooperate?”

    “Never,” Fravid spat. “I’ll never help you.”

    “You disappoint me,” Gark said. “I hoped that you would be kind enough to assist us, but since it appears you’re not . . . Zeke, would you do the honors?” Zeke whacked Fravid in the back of the head, causing the man’s head to snap down in a whiplash effect.

    “That’s enough!” Me’lin said from the corner of the room. “You’re closer to killing him that getting any information out!”

    “What she said,” Fravid commented, his head still in pain.

    “Shut up!” Zeke said, and Fravid shut his trap.

    “Now, you’re going to be our bait. And our guide,” Gark said. “When the time comes, we will make you cooperate.”

    “And what if I don’t?” Fravid asked.

    “Well, then we might just find a beast that might consider you tasty,” Gark said. “Help us, or get eaten. It’s your choice.”

    Fravid laughed. “You’re bluffing!” he said confidently, raising his head. “You don’t have anything like that to threaten me with! You’re on the run, with no home, and no safe harbor! The Duo will find me, and when they do . . .”

    “Then you’ll be dead, and we’ll be lightyears away from here,” Gark said. “Which doesn’t detract from our cause at all, so I suggest you work with us here or face that fate. Either way, you lose.”

    “What in the hell do you want, anyways?” Fravid asked. He was hoping that the do-gooders would explain their entire plan to him, and then when he escaped, he could rat out to the boss and have them silenced.

    “Why would we tell you?” Gark asked. “Zeke, please do the honors.”

    “My pleasure,” Zeke said. He whacked Fravid in the head again and slid the bag over the captives’ head.

    “Now, I take my leave,” Gark said. He motioned for everyone else to follow, and then went outside.

    “You have the number?” he asked Zeke.

    “I think so,” Zeke said. “Here.”

    “No, you make the call,” Gark said. “Remember, I’m supposed to be frozen, OK. If they know I’m back in business, then they can trap us. If they think it’s just you, then we have something going for us.”

    “Fine,” Zeke said. He dialed the number, which was supposedly for the boss.

    “Fravid? How go the proceedings?” came the all-too-familiar voice of Ciscerian Barbosa when he picked up his comm. unit.

    “Hello Dad,” Zeke said in a snide voice.

    “Zeke, what the hell are you doing there?” Ciscerian asked, shocked.

    “What do you think I’m doing?” Zeke asked coldly. “Shut up and listen to me. I have your pretty-boy Fravid here with me, and he’s going to face a grim fate if you do not cooperate.”

    “And why do I need him?” Ciscerian asked. Dammit, didn’t think of that Zeke thought. “Because all I really want is you by my side. Fravid is expendable.”

    “No he isn’t,” Zeke said. “He knows everything about your little operation, and is going to spill it out for me. Either that, or you cooperate and leave me alone.”

    “Zeke, you disappoint me,” Ciscerian said on the other end. “You’re bluffing.”

    “Really?” Zeke asked. “Why don’t you just say that to Fravid?” He moved the comlink over, and then Gark hit Fravid in the side, causing him to yelp out in pain.

    “Dammit, you fool, enough!” he shouted.

    “Well, Zeke, you are good,” Ciscerian said. “But I don’t need Fravid . . .”

    “Like I said, you need to shut him up, or he’ll rat on your plans,” Zeke said. “All of you criminals are alike. You will stab each other in the back if it means you can gain power.”

    “I do not think . . .”

    “No matter what you say or what you do, I’m coming for your head, and I won’t stop until I get it,” Zeke said. “You’ve messed with my life too much for me to back out now. Prepare yourself, because when we meet, I’m not going to take it easy on you. I’m going to wring your neck for all the problems you’ve caused me, you understand?” He then cut the connection, still angry. Then he turned to Gark. “Now what?”

    “We’ve laid down the gauntlet, so now the ball is in his court,” Gark said. “He’s going to take action, so we ought to prepare ourselves for that. Gather your things; we’re leaving.”
    Trieste likes this.
  7. jcgoble3

    jcgoble3 Jedi Grand Master star 5

    Nov 7, 2010
    Got him!

    ...well, one guy anyway. But it's a good start! :D
  8. Jedi Gunny

    Jedi Gunny Yahtzee Host star 9 VIP - Game Host

    May 20, 2008
    jcgoble3, Admiral Volshe, Trieste, epithree, JM_1977

    Zeke dialed in the number on the comlink, knowing full well what could happen here. He knew that he had to do this to gain some closure, but nevertheless he didn’t like the ramifications of why he had to do this. When the person on the other end of the line picked up, his heart skipped a beat.

    “Hello?” came the voice on the other end of the line. Zeke hadn’t heard that voice in a long time.

    “Hello, Mom,” Zeke said snidely.

    “Zeke, is that you?” his mother asked.

    “Of course it is.”

    “I haven’t heard from you in ages! How are things?”

    “They’ve been better,” Zeke said rudely.

    “Zeke, I’ve been around you enough to know when you’re blowing smoke. What’s on your mind?”

    “You should know what’s on my mind,” Zeke replied.

    “I don’t think I do.”

    “It’s about that frakker of a husband you have.”

    “What? Zeke, how dare you speak of your father like that!” his mother said, a concerned tone to her voice. “If he knows what you said, he would be very depressed.”

    “Why didn’t you tell me?” Zeke asked.

    “Tell you what?”

    “That he’s a two-bit criminal?” Zeke asked. “That he’s at the head of a large criminal organization that aims to destroy the livelihoods of people around the galaxy for his own gain?”

    “Zeke, I could have told you earlier, but I figured that you wouldn’t take it so well . . .”

    “You knew!” Zeke exclaimed.

    “Of course I did, but I refused to take part in it,” his mother replied. “It’s an awful business, but I knew that I couldn’t stop him. He kept babbling on about how he wanted you to join him . . .”

    “He’s done a nice job of fixing things against me,” Zeke snapped. “He sent out his lackeys to try and ruin my life, and has been making a nice attempt to kill me for the past few months.”

    “He would never do such a thing!”

    “Well, ask him that yourself when you see him next, since you’re such great pals,” Zeke shot back. “Why did you never tell me that I was adopted?”

    “Zeke, we were going to tell you . . .”

    “Why are you lying to me?” Zeke asked angrily, his temperature rising with every retort he made. “You had plenty of time to inform me, but you didn’t! And now I feel betrayed by both of you. You lied to me from the very beginning about who I am, and where I came from! And now he’s trying to take everything I have going for me away so that he can further his own damn goals! I’m sick of being in his shadow!”

    “Zeke, you must understand . . .”

    “I understand just fine,” Zeke snapped back at the woman. “It’s obvious to me that you’re on his side, and not willing to help me out when I really need you. I can’t take this anymore.”

    “Zeke, I’m your mother, and as that, I know what’s best for you.”

    “You’re not my mother,” Zeke said, cutting the connection after he said this venom-filled statement. He wanted to crunch the comlink in his hand, do some damage to its structure, but ultimately decided against it.

    “I can tell that didn’t end very well,” Gark commented as he munched on a pastry.

    “Of course it didn’t,” Zeke said coldly. “I was lied to from the beginning. Everything I grew up hearing . . . it was all a lie . . .”

    “Well, then we have nothing to lose,” Gark said. He popped the rest of the pastry into his mouth and then turned to Ondal. “Now, how are we going to take the Duo down?” he asked.

    “I’ll get something out of him,” Ondal said, motioning to Fravid. He then slapped the second-in-command hard across the face.

    “Knock it off, dammit!” Fravid yelled. “Look, there’s a secret entrance to the headquarters building, all right? You need to take the municipal sewer system to get there.”

    “That sounds like a plan,” Gark replied. “Let’s go.”

    NOTE: Yes, a short post, but I think it speaks for itself.
    jcgoble3 likes this.
  9. Jedi Gunny

    Jedi Gunny Yahtzee Host star 9 VIP - Game Host

    May 20, 2008
    Since I'm taking a few days off, here's the next installment a day early.

    Trieste, Admiral Volshe, epithree, JM_1977, jcgoble3

    Gark stuck his head into the pipe, trying to get a good look at its interior.

    “What do you see?” Zeke asked.

    “Looks like a standard pipe,” Gark replied, his voice amplified in the pipe. He knew that hadn’t been smart, because he had no idea if there were any bugs located in there that could pick up sounds. They had to be quiet here, or else their cover would be blown. “Pretty damn grimy, though.”

    “You expected anything else?” Ondal asked. He was holding Fravid’s hands behind his back, the bag still over his head to keep him quiet. “It’s a back way in; it’s not supposed to look pristine.”

    “I still don’t like it,” Gark said. “But we may have no choice. We need to finish this now.”

    “Then get in,” Zeke said. “I’ll follow you.”

    Gark shrugged. He didn’t like crawling through pipes, especially ones that could be used as sewers, but it looked like he had no choice in the matter. If this plan worked, they would end up in the basement of the Double Threat Duo’s lair. From there, they could do some damage . . . at least if they weren’t caught first. The Bothan didn’t trust Fravid to let them in the back door like this; last time it had been a trap, so Gark’s senses were on high alert about the whole thing.

    Finally he took his first step into the pipe, and sure enough, he could feel his feet landing in the grime. “What an incredible smell we’ve discovered,” he said, an air of cynicism in his voice.

    “Just get going,” Zeke said. The Bith came in right after Gark, landing in the slop as well. It was dark inside the pipe, so Gark wasn’t able to see much in front of him. All he could feel was the slop now accumulating on his boots, and the stench of raw sewage in his nostrils. He had been in other situations like this before, but he never looked forward to having to undergo these kinds of plans. Me’lin came in after them, as did Ondal still holding Fravid captive.

    After a few minutes of walking, Gark came to a fork in the pipe. “It goes off in two directions here,” he said quietly. “Which way do we go?”

    “I’m not sayin’ anything . . .” Fravid replied, but Ondal obviously hit him hard, because then he yelped out in pain.

    “Quiet!” Zeke hissed.

    “Fine. Go left,” Fravid said.

    “How can we trust you?” Zeke asked.

    “Because I’d kill him if he wasn’t,” Ondal replied. “Now get going.”

    Gark continued onwards, the stench becoming more obvious with every step he took. He had a funny feeling that they were walking towards the source of the smell, but what else could they do? This was definitely a sewer system, even though all of the pipes obviously were not being used at this time. Either that, or something was up, and sewage would be rushing at them in a few minutes without any remorse.

    When the pipe widened out again, Gark had to hop down into a watery mess of what felt like water mixed with feces and other undesirable products. “Joy,” he commented as he tried to keep his arms out of the slop. He had dressed for this occasion, trying to have work boots and tired-looking overalls on, but it was obvious that they might not be enough to keep him clean. If all this was successful, he was calling first dibs on the next opportunity for a shower.

    “Careful,” he said. Zeke hopped down into the muck as well.

    “Ack, got it on my face,” he said, wiping off the offending slime as he said this. This pipe had more light shining in from various cracks in the ceiling, so at least the place was poorly illuminated instead of almost pitch black. Three more splashes came down, and the group was all on the same footing once again. Gark kept going down the pipe as it narrowed once again.

    “You hear that?” Zeke asked from behind him. “That rushing sound?”

    “That’s coming from another pipe,” Ondal said. “We should be fine as long as we have the right pipe.”

    “And what if we don’t?” Zeke asked. “That sewage can wash us away in a hurry if it catches us.”

    “Then we’re running out of time,” Gark replied. He kept on trudging forwards, even though his conscience told him otherwise. What choice did he have? If this thing worked, then perhaps they could take down Ciscerian Barbosa, and then go back to their regular lives. Zeke could go cash in his “incentive”, whatever that was, Ondal could hopefully get his holdings on Nipseb back, and Gark and Me’lin could spend some time together after a few months of being separated. Fravid, on the other hand, wouldn’t benefit from this help, but not dying could also be construed as a benefit, so perhaps this was the lesser of two evils for him.

    After what seemed like another ten minutes, Gark hit the end of the pipe. In front of them was a ladder; its rungs grimy and covered in crap from having been nailed with sewage flows time and again over the years. “And now we go up,” Gark said. His hands hit he ladder, the slimy sewage contacting his skin and making it crawl a bit. He never thought he would have to come in such close contact with sewage. Then he began to climb, rung by rung.

    “Careful, it’s slippery,” he said to Zeke down below, who was starting his ascent. The rungs, caked with sewage, were indeed tricky to navigate, but Gark went up all the same. As soon as he reached the top, he could see a cover over his head. Reaching one hand up, he tried to dislodge it from its casing. However, the cover didn’t want to budge, and Gark grunted as he attempted to get more leverage. Doing so made his foot slip, and he had to pull himself back up where he was to avoid falling down and nailing Zeke, who was right behind him, in the face.

    “Damn cover is stuck,” Gark commented, trying once again to pop the lid free from its moorings.

    “Try harder!” Zeke hissed.

    “If you have any better leverage, I’d be much obliged,” Gark snapped back. For about a minute he was fumbling with the thing before it finally came loose. Then, with a quick slip move, he pushed the grate aside and jumped out of the hole into the room above. Zeke then came up after him, landing on his feet as well. Me’lin followed, and Ondal and Fravid took up the rear. When all five were in the basement, Gark moved the lid back onto the hole to cover up their presence. Or, at least cover it up, because they were all covered in grime from the ladder and the trudge here through the pipes and smelled like it too.

    “Now what?” Zeke asked.

    “Ask him,” Gark said, motioning to Ondal in the dim light. Ondal smacked Fravid in the side.

    “The basement leads to a series of supply closets, which then spit you out in the center area somewhere,” Fravid said.

    “Where does Barbosa usually hide out?”

    “He never stays in one place . . .”

    “Where does he hide out?” Zeke said firmly.

    “Somewhere around there. It depends on the day, and what’s going on at HQ. He’s probably not even here, since you threatened him,” Fravid said, a smirk on his face that no one else could see due to the bag being over his head.

    “We have to hope,” Gark said. “Come on.”

    Sure enough, the first supply closet was out of the basement, and the five of them had to wade through mops, brooms, and cleaning supply bottles to get out. Then they crossed a small hallway to another closet, this one holding more menacing items. It wasn’t a typical janitor’s closet, but instead more of a abduction closet. Bags, gloves, and other items were strewn about, obviously for the Duo’s purposes.

    “Disgusting sight,” Ondal commented as they went through.

    Yet another closet was dead ahead, and this one was more “normal” compared to the haunting last one. Gark tried to move around a mop, but his foot got caught, and he tripped down onto the floor in a heap.

    “Quiet!” Zeke hissed.

    “Sor . . .” Gark started, but then they heard a door opening. Everyone struggled to get out of the way of the door as it opened and a thug came in.

    “Do we need another damn mop?” he asked. He reached for one, taking Zeke’s cover out from in front of him. But the thug didn’t notice, as it was dark in the closet. “And some water . . .” The thug came over to pick up a bottle over the shelf, but then tripped on Gark as the Bothan was sprawled on the floor. The thug tumbled over into the wall, the force of impact knocking him out cold as his head nailed the hard surface.

    “What was that? You OK?” came the voice of another thug, who then came in and turned on the light. Gark wasn’t altogether visible on the floor, but Zeke, now lacking the mop he was hiding behind, had no cover. The thug saw him and reacted. “What the . . .?”

    Me’lin, who was further back in the closet, quickly grabbed a bottle off a nearby shelf and chucked it at the thug. The bottle bounced off his face, causing him to lose his concentration. This gave Zeke enough time to grab another mop and smash it over the head of the thug, downing him easily.

    “That was too close,” Ondal commented.

    “Hurry, we’re on the clock now,” Gark said. He leaped back to his feet and then headed out of the closet, turning off the light as they left.

    “Now what?” Zeke asked. They were looking down one long hallway, with no windows or markings to tell them where they were. There was another door on the opposite side of the hall, but it did not have any inscriptions either.

    “We might have to split up,” Gark said.

    “Are you nuts?” Zeke exclaimed. “We have to stay together, or we’ll get lost in here.”

    “Fine,” Gark said. He led them down on of the ways in the hall, but was then stopped by the sound of footsteps. Everyone in the party glued themselves to the wall, but the footsteps were getting louder.

    “Where are they?” Zeke whispered.

    Gark pointed.


    Everyone turned their heads around to see some thugs further down the hallway looking straight at them. The footsteps had been wrong; they were coming from the other side of the hall.

    “Cover’s blown,” Gark said. He quickly ran down the hall, followed by the others. The chase was on.
    jcgoble3 likes this.
  10. jcgoble3

    jcgoble3 Jedi Grand Master star 5

    Nov 7, 2010
    Lights, camera, ACTION! Now we're getting into the exciting stuff! Can't wait for more! :D
  11. Jedi Gunny

    Jedi Gunny Yahtzee Host star 9 VIP - Game Host

    May 20, 2008
    jcgoble3, Trieste, Admiral Volshe, epithree, JM_1977

    Gark took a look back at the pursuing thugs, trying to gauge how far they were away. The five fugitives, including Fravid, who had no idea why he was running, made their way down the hall.

    “Where in the hell do we go from here?” Zeke asked.

    “No idea,” Gark replied.

    “Oh, great.”

    The five of them came to a fork in the hallway. To one end was just more hallway, while the other end would shoot them out into a small control room. Ondal, trying to change directions while holding onto Fravid and keeping his hands behind his back, ran smack dab into the wall and fell over. “Dammit!” he yelled as he tried to get off the ground.

    Then the pursuing thugs came around the corner, bringing their weapons to bear. One tossed what looked like a hatchet at Ondal’s head, which barely missed him before it embedded itself in the wall. Then the thugs fanned out as they tried to keep following their prey. Gark had gone down the continuing hall along with Me’lin, but for some odd reason Zeke had hit the hall to the control room in the commotion, and now with thugs gaining on him, he began to back up considerably, further separating the five. Ondal was now on his feet, and he sent out a kick at the nearest thug, who went down to the ground on impact.

    “Where’s Zeke?” Me’lin asked as she and Gark tried to make their way down the hallway.

    “Obviously we’ve been separated,” Gark replied. “We’ll have to do this on our own.”

    Zeke backed his way into the control room, now in shouting distance of the thugs who were bearing down on him. His foot hit a floor console, and he took a quick look behind him. There were only two thugs in here previously, wearing white lab coats, and when they saw Zeke and the thugs ready to duke it out, they fled. Zeke could see Ondal at the fork in the passageway, fending off two thugs while still managing to keep a hold of Fravid so that he didn’t join in the fight on the side of the Duo.

    Zeke then jumped onto a nearby table, the thugs now fanning around him to cut off any hope of escape.

    “We have you surrounded,” a Zabrak said roughly.

    “I don’t think so,” Zeke replied. He jumped from this table to the next one over, trying to widen the confrontation. Down the row he went, knocking over hardware with his feet as he ran along the countertops and tables that had been laid out. The thugs kept with him, not having to deal with all of the items that were slowing Zeke down as he tried not to trip. If he lost his balance, then he would likely fall off the table and then be overpowered easily by the thugs.

    Sensing the end of the tables, Zeke looked up. There wasn’t much above him except for a metal bar. That would have to do. Using his military training, he planted one foot on a console and then launched himself in the air, latching onto the bar with his elbows wrapped around it. The thugs below, stunned by this, turned to their blasters, ready to fire. One shot came up quickly, barely missing Zeke as it zipped angrily into the air. Zeke pulled himself onto the bar, now forced to walk the tightrope as he stood there. More blaster shots came up at him, so he tip-toed his way across the bar, trying to be stable while also going as fast as he could. This was a dangerous situation for him, so he knew that he would have to find a delicate balance if he was to survive this. Down below the thugs tried to follow him, keeping him within the range of their weapons. Yet another blaster bolt came in too close for comfort for the Bith, who kept moving despite the instability he was experiencing on the bar.

    Then he looked up once more; there was a small window just above him. He looked down; there was no way he was returning to the ground, not with five thugs trying to kill him with their weapons. He went for broke and jumped off the bar, smashing the glass with his fist. A small cut was made on his knuckle, but he knew that he had to fight through the pain. He hauled himself through the window and out of the control room. He landed in a desk chair, much to the surprise of the operator, a human who looked like he had been asleep. Zeke knocked him out cold with one punch before continuing, not sure where he was going, but knowing that he couldn’t stay in one place for too long. Ondal was no longer in sight, so he was on his own.


    Ondal took another swing at a thug, who finally went down to the ground.

    “You suck,” Fravid said from underneath the bag.

    “Shut up,” Ondal said, giving Fravid another smack across the face.

    “What did I say about the face?” Fravid yelled.

    “Shut up!” Ondal exclaimed back at him. “Now get moving!” He pushed Fravid in the back down the long hallway, prodding him to keep moving. The thugs Ondal had dispatched wouldn’t be out for long, so the man knew that he had to get out as soon as possible before they could return to action.


    Ciscerian Barbosa took a drink of his coffee as he looked over data sheets. Business was good over the last week; the satellite stations on various planets were working at 110% production, and thus the money was rolling in. He knew that those employees, if they could be termed as such, would definitely be in the running to earn a small raise for their efforts. Either that, or he could squeeze some more work out of them and then have them go missing, just to keep the money in his pockets.

    Then a thug burst into his office. “Sir, we have a security breach!”

    “Breach?” Ciscerian asked. He was skeptical; what were the thugs trying to pull now? They weren’t going to get raises; more likely they would be shot for mutinying instead of receiving their demands. What was this, a union strike?

    “Come to the command center,” the thug said. Ciscerian followed, and when he reached the command center, he began to watch security footage. Each shot seemed to be filled with nothing, just shots of empty space and halls. But then one such shot gave him a nugget of information. There was a Bith knocking out a thug next to a door.

    “Zeke,” Ciscerian said. He then turned to his aide. “Code Black,” he said.

    “Code Black?” the aide replied, astonished. “We have never gone to that . . .”

    “Go to it anyways!” Ciscerian yelled at him. “I will not let Zeke win. We must make sure he and his accomplices are caught before they do too much damage. “


    Gark sent out a vicious punch that knocked out a thug completely, sending the man to the floor. He then sent out an armbar that nailed another thug in the chest, downing him as well. The Bothan and his wife had run into quite a bit of trouble as they made their way down the hall. Gark had already taken out five thugs since they had gotten separated from Zeke, Ondal, and Fravid, and it looked like there would be more to add to the totals.

    “A map would be nice,” Gark commented as he finished off his sixth thug. “You know, to tell us where the secret chamber is.”

    “You think they would be that stupid?” Me’lin asked, kicking a thug in the face and downing him once again.

    “I don’t know,” Gark replied. “But we need to keep looking.” When the last of the wave of thugs was defeated, both of them continued on down the hallway. It wasn’t too long before they ran into the Herglic who had accosted them on their previous trip to the lair.

    “Well, if it isn’t the Bothan hero,” the Herglic said mischievously. “I thought you were on ice.”

    “Well, since I’m here right now being accosted, I would say that I’m not anymore,” Gark said with a wry grin. The Herglic frowned.

    “I’m going to cut you apart like tissue paper,” he said, lumbering forwards while holding a large axe. Me’lin cringed, not wanting to look at the sight. But Gark knew what he had going for him. He analyzed the situation; the Herglic took up most of the hallway with his bulk, but there were pockets of open space underneath his arms. They couldn’t go near the axe, because then they would be chopped to pieces in a flash. And they couldn’t go on the exact other side of the axe, because the Herglic would only have to take one swing to get it from one hand to the opposite wall. From the look of it, he had practiced with the weapon quite a bit, so there was no testing of the speed aspect here. This left one thing; the walls were wide open, so if Gark was able to hit the wall and ricochet off of it . . . that was the ticket.

    The Bothan ran forwards and pushed off from the base of the wall. The Herglic, not expecting this, brought the axe around to bear. However, Gark, having launched from the wall instead of hugging it, was going in the opposite direction from the axe. He then sent out a huge kick at the Herglic’s face, stinging the thug in the noggin as he passed by. The Herglic let out a groan as Gark’s foot made contact, but he did not go down. Gark hadn’t expected him to; that was just meant to be a first blow. When he landed, he then brought all of his weight onto the left leg of the enemy. The Herglic, now off-balance, brought the axe up to the ceiling as he tried to maintain his balance and block the hallway. But it was obvious that he wasn’t, and he was on the edge of teetering out of control.

    “Now!” Gark yelled.

    “Do what?” his wife exclaimed.

    “Just do something!” Gark replied, exasperated. He didn’t have anything in mind, because all of his energy was being pushed into trying to get the Herglic to tip over. Me’lin rushed forwards and then sent out a fist right into the Herglic’s face. The thug shook that off, but then Me’lin sent out a nice kick to the face that then tipped the scale. The Herglic fell over, the axe lodging itself in the wall above where Gark had fallen onto his back. Gark, taking a note of the axe’s location, rolled out from underneath it and then stood up. “Not bad,” the Bothan commented.

    “I learned from the best,” Me’lin said with a wink.


    Zeke leaped into the air and landed on top of the Barabel thug, who hadn’t seen this coming. The Bith then sent his elbows down onto the Barabel, who crumpled under the force of the blow. Zeke then shrugged off the body and kept moving. Ciscerian was going to pay for all that he had done, and then for making him work this hard to get to said revenge.

    Now he was in some small room, the contents of which he had no clue. But that didn’t matter; he was just trying to keep moving. Ciscerian would have to find him, and then Zeke knew he would have an advantage. Then again, rule number one in the military was always to have the high ground. Ciscerain knew this place by the back of his hand, while Zeke had only been here once before and barely knew the layout, especially in this part of the building. So he had to rely on luck to get out of here without running into Ciscerain in a supply closet or small room where there was no room to maneuver. If it was a wide-open space, he might have a chance, but a confined area would spell his doom, especially since he had no backup and Ciscerain could bring thugs with him to seal off his escape route.

    Through another door he went, trying to find his way. Another thug came out of the woodwork, grabbing hold of Zeke’s neck and trying to pin him to the wall. But Zeke, acting quickly, pushed his elbows back and nailed the thug in the chest, stunning him momentarily. Zeke then turned around and sent out a fist into the thug’s face, downing him.


    Ondal was having problems trying to keep an eye on Fravid and beat the thugs that kept tailing him. Finally he had an idea. He opened the door to a supply closet when he had the chance and then shoved Fravid inside, making sure to lock the door as he closed it. This freed him up considerably, and it was a good move when a thug came rushing at him. Ondal took his fist and punched the thug in the face, downing him. Not having to keep control of Fravid made things a lot easier.


    Gark ducked the swinging arm of a thug and then smashed his fist into the thug’s foot. The man yelled out in pain, and then Gark sent in an uppercut that nailed the thug in the jaw. Gark then pushed the thug away with quite a bit of force, causing him to fall over. It was a quick knockdown, but it wouldn’t last long. The man got back up, and Gark was right there to greet him with a kick to the face.

    The Bothan then turned around to see Me’lin easily handle a thug with some of the simple moves he had taught her. She was getting a lot better at the self-defense, because a thug rushed her and she chopped him across the face before then jabbing him in the head with a sideswipe that forced his head into the wall. On collision, it was enough impact to knock him out, at least for now. She then turned and sent out a roundhouse kick into the gut of another thug, downing him as well.

    “How am I doing?” she asked.

    “Not bad . . .” Gark said. “Not bad at all. Now, let’s keep moving.”

    The hallway finally emptied out into an office. On the tables were numerous datapads, and Gark picked one up. It had the inventory list of the Duo’s operations in the area, with all kinds of products going every which way in the transit system the syndicate had going. “This operation is larger than we presumed,” Gark commented. “Is this some of the stuff you picked up earlier?”

    Me’lin took a quick look at another datapad. “This is,” she replied. “Should we hold onto these, just in case we need evidence?”

    “I don’t think we’ll need evidence to convict these criminals, because they stepped over the line a long time ago with the police, but then again, it might not be a bad idea,” Gark said. “Especially since we’ve got a lot of their operation in our hands right here . . .” He scooped up another datapad and placed it in his pocket.

    Then they could hear footsteps, and more thugs came into the room. Gark rushed forwards, his fists flying. This wasn’t over yet.


    Zeke took a look behind him before walking through the next door. Immediately he recognized this place; it was the loading dock where he, Gark and Fravid had entered the first time, and where the two of them had escaped afterwards. It was a nice open space, but he couldn’t leave now. He had to find Ciscerian.

    A thug came at him from the receiving office, and Zeke downed him easily. He then stopped to check on the labels of the boxes that were stacked in the area. The code meant nothing to him, but he busted open the top of one of them and pulled out several military-grade weapons and explosives. Hm, so the Duo was dabbling, if not completely invested, in the weapon black market.

    “Stop right there, Zeke,” came a voice. Zeke looked behind him to see Ciscerian, the man who he thought was his father, standing there across the dock from him. The elder Bith had a serious look on his face. “I thought you were going to drag me out halfway across the galaxy, but I can see that you decided to bring the fight to me this time.”

    “I am a slow learner,” Zeke replied, dropping the weapons back into the box because he knew they weren’t loaded, and would thus be worthless to him.

    “So, we now seem to be on a course for a fight to the death,” Ciscerian said. “And you should know that I am not someone you want to trifle with.”

    “I’m surprised you keep trying to kill us with your thugs, then,” Zeke retorted. “If you could kill us yourself, why not have done so? You’re bluffing.”

    “Am I?” Ciscerian asked. He then got into his fighting stance, which was nothing like Zeke had ever seen before. Gark’s was much different, and Zeke’s had some variations given that his body type was not the same as Gark’s. Zeke settled into his stance as well, and the two men faced off.

    “And now we begin,” Ciscerain said before rushing forwards. Zeke stood his ground until the moment when Ciscerian was almost right on top of him before moving. He was right; the fight was on.
  12. jcgoble3

    jcgoble3 Jedi Grand Master star 5

    Nov 7, 2010
    Uh-oh. Father vs. son deathmatch? This cannot end well. [face_nail_biting]
  13. Jedi Gunny

    Jedi Gunny Yahtzee Host star 9 VIP - Game Host

    May 20, 2008
    TAGS: Admiral Volshe, jcgoble3, Trieste, epithree, JM_1977

    Zeke reacted quickly when Ciscerian charged at him, the two Barbosas now going at each other with blows. It was a matchup of adoptive father versus the adopted son, the 7-time GCLA champion versus the Galactic Cup champion, the criminal versus the vigilante, a classic battle for the ages. Ciscerain came and nicked Zeke on the cheek with his finger, almost as if that got the first contact out of the way so that they could start the titanic struggle for the ages.

    Ciscerian then started a combo move, with a swinging arm to begin, and then followed up with a jumping kick to knock Zeke’s arm out of the way when it was up to shield his face from the arm move. Sure enough, Zeke’s arm was pushed out of the way by the kick, turning him around a little bit. Ciscerian then switched tactics and kicked Zeke in the back, knocking the younger Bith onto his gut. Zeke then hopped back to his feet before any more damage could be done, and he then stared down his opponent once again.

    “You disappoint me,” Ciscerian said.

    “I’m just warming up,” Zeke said, making sure to spit on the ground in order to prove his point.

    The two then locked their arms in a tangle, trying to outmuscle the other as they went around in a slow circle. Zeke knew that he was strong, but Ciscerian was no slouch. The older Bith was much stronger than Zeke had given him credit for; being a Limmie player, the Hall-of-Famer certainly knew how to build and maintain muscle. Zeke wasn’t sure if he was as strong as he was during his playing days, but Ciscerian was certainly a good match for the younger Bith.

    Ciscerian then sent out a kick to try and break the deadlock, but Zeke was able to dodge it easily. Zeke then tried to break the lock, but Ciscerian was able to keep him tied up and thus unable to use his arms for anything else but the grudge match that they were already locked in. Zeke then lashed out with a kick of his own, but Ciscerian was able to twist away from it just in time, akin to the military training he also had. Both of them had been in the military and the Limmie pitch, and were as evenly matched as possible. Whoever won would obviously have to be a master of strategy, because neither held a significant advantage one way or the other.

    “I suggest you give up now,” Ciscerian said as his glare bore a hole into Zeke’s skull.

    “What makes you think that?” Zeke shot back, trying his hardest to maintain his ground.

    “Because I have more things up my sleeve than you could possibly imagine,” Ciscerian replied.

    “Then show me, you coward,” Zeke said. He finally was able to twist one arm free, but Ciscerian quickly grabbed the other one with his now-free hand and gave it a huge twist. Zeke yelped out in pain as his arm was moved uncomfortably, and he finally had to jump back.

    “That was only the beginning,” Ciscerian warned. “Do not underestimate my powers, Zeke.”

    “I won’t, but I know you have a weakness,” Zeke said, now putting his arms back up in a fighting posture. “And I will find it, mark my words.”

    “What are you really fighting for?” Ciscerian asked.

    “You’re stalling,” Zeke replied harshly.

    “I repeat, what are you fighting for?” Ciscerian asked.

    “You wouldn’t understand,” Zeke replied. “Because you sold your soul away.”

    “Zeke, you will find that being a criminal has its advantages,” Ciscerian said. “I once followed the law, same as you do. It is an honor system, and nothing more. There was a day when I taught you to respect law enforcement, because they were the saviors of the day when things got dark. But what happens when they turn their back? You get conflict, anarchy manifesting itself in the streets. And that was when I realized that justice was a lie, that you really only have yourself to trust when push comes to shove. I learned that the hard way, because all of my cohorts tried to one-up me any way possible. So I reacted, I learned, and I grew. And now you see what my hard work has built, a criminal empire that will continue to grow in size and scale. There’s not a damn thing you can do about it, either, because taking me down will just cause another one to rise up and take my place. That is the way of things.”

    “Then why are you fighting to protect it so?” Zeke asked.

    “Because I believe I am the right man for the job,” Ciscerian said. “Because a win here will continue my predominance over the underworld in these parts. Because I have something to fight for, unlike you. You have no idea what it is like to fight for your life, to know that failure is not an option you can afford to risk.”

    “You’d be surprised,” Zeke said. In fact, he did have a fear of losing here. He had lost Jenna, he had sold out Gark, he had screwed up royally in his life. But he was willing to fight for what he believed in, a life with Jenna, making things right with the Bothan, and one where he could sit back and focus on Limmie once more, or if something else more important got in the way, that. Therefore, a loss here would show that he would never be able to be more than his adoptive father, never be more than a second-place finisher in all arenas. He had to win this fight.

    “What do you have to fight for?” Ciscerian asked. “A silly ball game? Teammates? Friends? A crush, perhaps? Jenna Leed?”

    “How dare you bring her into this!” Zeke shouted. He knew that the Duo had been messing with Jenna’s life, and he wanted to make them pay for it.

    “Is a crush on her the real driver behind this, Zeke? Is it revenge? Is it love? What?”

    “I’m going to take you down for all you’ve done,” Zeke spat. “You ruined my life, and thus you’re going to pay.”

    “How have I ruined your life?” the elder Barbosa asked. “You have had many opportunities to join me in my quest . . .”

    “I want you to leave me alone to forge my own path!” Zeke exclaimed. “My entire life, I’ve been stuck in your shadow! When I entered the pro game, what was the first thing the critics said about me? That I needed to win eight titles to get out of your shadow! So I worked and worked, and now I’m at the pinnacle of success at the game. But you’re still in my way to stardom, because you are the one who keeps trying to hold me down, make me remember that you did this and that first. Well, I’m sick of that. I want to be my own man, have my own legacy. And you lied to me about my past, about where I came from, about everything I ever thought was right. I’ll never join you, because I can’t trust one thing you say.”

    He then lunged forwards, but was easily blocked by Ciscerian and sent back to where he had been standing previously.

    “Good, I can see that you are not afraid,” Ciscerian replied. “But that will not be enough to save you. I once thought I was keeping you safe by telling you all of those things. But it turns out that I was mistaken. Your only hope is to understand that things are not always as they appear.”

    “Stop messing with me!” Zeke yelled angrily. He wanted to finish this fight with fists, not with words. Words would only stall him, because the elder Barbosa knew that Zeke probably had more stamina, and was thus either trying to rest, or was legitimately messing with Zeke’s mind to lower his mental defenses.

    “That is the truth,” Ciscerian said. But he wasn’t able to say any more, because he had to defend himself from Zeke as the younger Bith made another attack attempt. This flurry pushed the two down onto the loading dock floor, where there was more room to work. The wide-open space was perfect for the next few minutes, as the two kept going at it, attacking and counterattacking almost at will. Zeke began to sweat, but he knew that he had no choice. He had to win this fight.


    Gark barely dodged a swing before sending the thug down to the ground. He flipped the thug over, which caused him to ram his head into the noggin of another thug, and both were stunned by this blow as the original thug toppled over onto the ground.

    The Bothan then saw that Me’lin was in trouble. She was being held down by two thugs as another one prepared to shoot her with a blaster and end her life. Thinking quickly, Gark grabbed a datapad and sent it out as a missile at the thug. The datapad knocked the blaster out of the thug’s hands, and the weapon landed on the floor. It went off and shot the thug in the foot, making him yell in pain as he held his foot. Me’lin took this opportunity to shrug free of her captors, smack them both in the face with her elbows as she shot them behind her body, and then she shoved the injured thug onto the ground with a solid push to the torso.

    “Let’s go!” Gark exclaimed, running out of the room before more thugs could arrive.

    “Do we have a plan?” the Twi’lek asked as the two of them ran down the next hallway.

    “Getting out,” Gark replied. “But we need to find Zeke and Ondal first.”

    “Knowing Zeke, he’s going after his father,” Me’lin said. “That’s the whole reason he’s even here.”

    “I can assume that he’s already accomplished finding that frakker,” Gark commented. “And he’s going to get himself killed, most likely. We need to find him before that can happen.”


    Zeke was repelled one more time by Ciscerian. It seemed like no matter what he did, the elder Barbosa was there to stop his attack and then launch one of his own. Zeke was beginning to wonder if he was capable of winning this fight. After all, he hadn’t expected to use this much energy if he did run into his “father”.

    He came out with a swinging punch that hooked down, but Ciscerian made sure to dodge both aspects and then use an armbar to hit Zeke across the face. Zeke stumbled backwards in the wall of the loading floor, trying to shake off that hit.

    “You can’t beat me, Zeke,” Ciscerian said, an air of haughtiness in his voice.

    “I can,” Zeke said. “Just watch me.”

    “Watch what, Zeke?” Ciscerian asked, his eyes narrowing. “You haven’t been able to defeat me, an old man in comparison to yourself, and don’t have the guts to finish the deal. You are a sorry wreck because you cling to ideals that I long ago left behind because I knew them to be weak. It’s a wretched sight, seeing you struggle with those like I did, and only I know how to truly send those demons away. You push it right back in their face and become a man. But as you are not fighting for your own interests, you can never defeat me. Now, I can help you achieve what I have. You must listen to my words.”

    “Never!” Zeke said. “I’ll never join you!”

    “Then I might have to try it on Ms. Leed,” Ciscerian said, shrugging. “I am sure that having her out of the way would change your perspective on things. Perhaps an abduction . . . or maybe the police will find her drowned in her own bathtub . . . what a pity . . .”

    Zeke, enraged by this talk, charged forwards, not even thinking about what he was doing. The first attack was blocked by Ciscerian, but Zeke, in his rage, kept going. One punch landed on the elder Barbosa, then another, and another, and a fourth. He was pummeling Ciscerian because he had made his shot way too close to the mark for comfort, and Zeke was pissed. Ciscerian fell down to the ground in shock, and Zeke moved in for the kill. He continued to smack Ciscerian in the face, on the arms, in the legs, anything he could do to cause some damage, and to take his frustration out on Ciscerian.

    “Zeke, enough!” came a voice. Ondal was looking over the side of the elevated floor.

    “No!” Zeke said. He continued to pummel Ciscerian until the elder Barbosa put up his hand to get Zeke to stop.

    “Stop,” he said.

    “No! You ruined my life!” Zeke said. He raised his hand to strike Ciscerian again, to finally crack him open and make him bleed dry. But Ondal stopped him with another shout.

    “Just keep him there!” Ondal said. “The police are almost here. I called them in.”

    “It’s too late,” Ciscerian said, gasping for air. “Because you won’t make it out alive. Even if you strike me down, Zeke, I will still win.”

    “No you won’t,” Zeke said.

    “Strike me down, and give in to your wildest dreams,” Ciscerian panted. “I know you have it in you. Take my place and rule the galaxy!”

    “Never,” Zeke said, returning his clenched fist back into a hand. “I’ll never do that.”

    When the police arrived, they were astonished at the size of the operation that they were witnessing. Ciscerian and Fravid, who had somehow been able to escape the closet he had been locked in but was instantly recognized as a fugitive and caught by the officers, were hauled off to high-security prison, while many of the thugs who couldn’t escape were rounded up and sent to await their fates on trial at the local jail. Before Ciscerian could be hauled away by the officers, he had threatened to return someday and complete his mission. Zeke had just laughed in his face, knowing full well that Ciscerian wouldn’t be able to pull something like that off. Around this time Gark and Me’lin had shown up in the loading dock area, finishing off one last thug before the fight was over. The officers were pleasantly surprised to see that Superbothan was on the case, but in plainclothes this time. Gark tried to give Zeke as much credit as possible, but knew that if word of this was to get out, most likely he wouldn’t be able to shake the image he had been given in the media due to his involvement in this whole thing, even if it would be positive publicity.

    The next day, Ondal said his goodbyes and left on a ship bound for Nipseb, ready to take it back from the Duo’s agents and get back in business. Zeke knew that he had to leave as well, but Gark made sure to catch him before he could leave, this time on friendly terms.

    “Zeke, I have something for you,” Gark said.

    “What?” the Bith.

    “A letter. Make sure you read it before delivering it,” Gark said. “Just so that you know who to give it to.”

    “Thanks for everything,” Zeke said. “I guess you really can’t forgive me for bailing on you, so I understand if you’re still upset . . .”

    “Of course I’m upset,” Gark said. “But we’ve won the day, so I think we’ve earned a respite from that. Just remember, Zeke, I may need your help later on. You know, because you owe me one after all this.” Zeke sheepishly nodded; he couldn’t disagree with that. “We’ll be seeing you around, then.” The two of them took off in their speeder, and Zeke went to the starport. He had a message to deliver in person.

    The S’rilys stopped by the house of the Corizyls. On the way, Me’lin remarked that they wouldn’t recognize Galin after all this time, because kids grew so fast. Gark agreed with her, but was happy to know that they were able to be home and not have to worry about the Duo. The sun would come up the next day, and crime would reign again, but for one day, Gark knew that he could take some time off and just enjoy his life.

    Tavis and Lyndra were of course suspicious about why Galin’s parents hadn’t come to pick him up in about three months, and Gark had to lie through his teeth to get away with it. Then they left the Corizyl house, and headed back home. As soon as they got back, Gark knew that he needed to get out for a night on the town. So they dropped Galin off with a babysitter and hit the town that night. He and Me’lin decided to eat at a fancy restaurant, watch a movie, and then find some dessert before returning home. It was nice to spend some time with each other for once. Then they hopped back in the speeder and headed home, although Gark was so sleepy by the time they arrived that he faceplanted on the couch immediately and drifted off to sleep.


    Zeke finally reached the top of the stairs, his heart pumping and his mind racing. This was his moment to make good on everything; it had been a hard slog, but he had gotten here in one piece, and that’s what mattered when all was said and done.

    He rang the doorbell and waited, hoping, that he hadn’t blown his chances. Several seconds passed, and then he could hear the door being unlocked. This was it. Jenna’s head poked out from behind the door. “Zeke,” she said.

    “Jenna,” Zeke replied. “I did it.”

    “You did?” Jenna asked. She still seemed a bit skeptical, but Zeke could tell that she was hoping that he was telling the truth. He didn’t blame her, given the anger she had harbored towards him after their last meeting.

    “Really,” Zeke said. “I can prove it.” He handed a piece of flimsy over to Jenna, who then began to read.

    Ms. Leed,

    Zeke has informed me that you two have not been on the best of terms recently. Something about your engagement, I take it? However, I want you to know that I am indeed safe and sound, and Zeke did what he needed to guarantee that. He risked his neck to save mine, and I owed him one. So he asked me to write this note, of which I am not quite sure what it’s for, but I think will go towards melting the ice between you two. I just want you to know that, even though I’ve never met you in person, that Zeke is a good man for you. Good luck with your future together, and tell Zeke that I’ll be in touch.



    Jenna read the note once, and then re-read it. She could tell that it wasn’t Zeke’s writing, because his script was terrible; no, this seemed to be the real deal. Zeke had done it; he had taken her threat with the utmost severity, and had done what she had asked of him. Her anger melted away, the blinders that she had put on for the past few months now completely gone. Instead, her dreams of life with Zeke sprang back into motion, her hopes returning bit by bit. The sun had come out once again, and Jenna wanted every bit of it. She reached out and gave Zeke a huge kiss, which Zeke hadn’t quite been expecting but took regardless. “I knew you could do it,” she said. “I just knew it.”

    “So, are we still engaged?” Zeke asked.

    “Yes,” Jenna said, a smile forming on her face. “I love you, Zeke.”

    “I love you, Jenna,” Zeke said, nodding as his girl embraced him. “Are you going to draw up plans for the wedding?”

    “I’ll get to that,” Jenna said. “Plenty of time.” Then her tone changed slightly, from complete relief to something a bit more serious. “Zeke, there’s something you should know. The last time, when you were here, I . . .”

    “You don’t need to say it,” Zeke said. “You were angry at me, and I understand that now. I hurt you, and I want to make up for that any way I can.”

    “I . . .”

    “Just say the word, and I’ll try to make it right,” Zeke said.

    “It’s not that,” Jenna said. The Bith was confused; what was she talking about? She looked up at Zeke, drawing his attention once more. “Zeke . . . I want you to know. I’m pregnant. And you’re the father.”

    NOTE: Boom! Another cliffhanger!
  14. jcgoble3

    jcgoble3 Jedi Grand Master star 5

    Nov 7, 2010
    But if Ciscerian was only arrested and not killed, that means he'll be back for more. [face_nail_biting] I know of what I speak. [face_devil]

    And Zeke's going to be a father? Why does that not surprise me? :p
  15. Trieste

    Trieste Force Ghost star 5

    Apr 10, 2010
    I agree jc--jail didn't hold the Double Take Duo before, did it? I'm not sure it'll hold Cisceran again for long. ;)
  16. Jedi Gunny

    Jedi Gunny Yahtzee Host star 9 VIP - Game Host

    May 20, 2008
    Author Note: After completing the previous story arc, I have changed directions and come up with a new story that has absolutely no relation to what you have just read. As I have informed some of you, I have written two scenarios within this story, with much different outcomes. I am therefore going to post both of them, the "actual" story, and the "deleted" story, together. As such, there may be multiple posts in the same day, depending on how long the two posts are that would correspond at about the same time chronologically (because of space issues and formatting, etc.) I will post them in chunks as originally intended, but the deleted story will be posted faster so that you may see what I had in mind originally when writing the story. And you will definitely see why I deleted one arc and kept the other, but I think it's worth seeing both.

    I will post the deleted scene up to a certain point in this post, and then follow up with the "actual" arc from post 1 and go with my usual posting blocks.


    TAGS: Trieste, jcgoble3, Admiral Volshe, epithree

    Gark ripped off his superhero mask, revealing the sweaty mass of fur on his face. He had just been through hell and back in his fight to break up a notorious spice ring. It hadn’t been easy work; the criminals were smart, and had come out swinging with all the force they had. It took quite a while to put them down so that the police could arrest them, and the Bothan was exhausted. He needed some time off; it had only been a few weeks earlier that he had helped take down the Double Threat Duo, and yet he was already back to being the protector that the planet needed him to be. He had been consumed in this line of work for so long, it seemed, that he ate, slept, and breathed his crimefighter persona. But sometimes being a hero didn’t pay.

    He eventually was able to get out of his superhero suit and don his regular everyday clothes once more before driving home, something that he figured would be in his best interest. If people on the sidewalks saw Superbothan driving a speeder, they might freak out. Besides, the suit definitely needed washing. When he got home, he made sure to throw the suit into the washer so that the stains, sweat, and crusted blood could be cleaned off and make the suit pristine once again. However, next to the washer was a pile of clothes, and he knew that he couldn’t have them in there with the suit. No reason to jeopardize his life in case the other clothes accidentally ripped a hole in the suit, or even change its color. Red items were especially tricky in this regard. As soon as he was done, he wanted to go make a sandwich for himself. However, he didn’t get far before a very annoyed Me’lin showed up in the doorway.

    “Where’ve you been?” she demanded.

    “Uh, just out and about,” Gark lied.

    “You were out in the suit again, weren’t you?” the Twi’lek asked.

    “Fine, I was. But it was a big case!” Gark conceded. “Took down an entire drug ring by myself. Not bad for a few days’ work.”

    “Gark, we’ve talked about this,” Me’lin replied. “You promised me . . .”

    “I know,” Gark said. “I keep meaning to take some time off, but . . .”

    “But what?” Me’lin asked, still frowning. “While you’ve been out galavanting after criminals and thugs, I’ve been stuck here, going to work, doing chores, running the house. And Galin, what about him? You’re so busy that you don’t even see your son that much anymore. What is it going to take to get you to take some time with your family instead of putting your head in the line of fire all the time? I know you want to make things better for everyone, but what about for me? When will I be as important as the people you are trying to save?”

    Gark bit his lip. She had a point; he was ignoring them. It wasn’t intentional by any means; that was just the way it was being a superhero. One had to put the needs of the many over the needs of the few, or the one, as the saying went. But she had a point regardless.

    “Look, I know you’re upset,” Gark said. “You want to just get away for a week or so? You know, spend some quality family time?”

    “It’s a start,” Me’lin said. Obviously this wasn’t quite what she had hoped for. “But this time you won’t be suckering me into work or the superhero thing, OK? This better not be for some conference or so that you can talk to informants about another big case . . .”

    “Of course not,” Gark said, taken aback. How could his offer have been construed that way? “Just the three of us, spending time together. Isn’t that what you want?”

    “Yes!” Me’lin exclaimed in an annoyed fashion. “Why did it take you so long to figure that out?”

    “Because I’m a stuck-up jerk?” Gark asked.

    “Exactly!” his wife said, folding her arms again. “Now, where did you have in mind?”

    “Somewhere new,” Gark said. “I hear that there’s this really nice planet in the Mid Rim called Trimfi. I think it might be time we check them out.”

    “Never heard of it,” Me’lin said, shrugging.

    “It’s not that well-known galaxy-wide, so I think it would be a great place to get away to,” Gark said. “Come on. I’ll help you pack.”

    Days Later

    Gark and Me’lin entered the restaurant, both dressed to the teeth. Gark was wearing his (admittedly hated) suit and dress slacks, while Me’lin wore a flowing black dress that Gark found to be stunning. Apparently Trimfi had an upscale district in its midtown region, and therefore the S’rilys went there instead of going to a seedier part of the area, which, if the people were to be believed, really wasn’t that bad. Gark knew he had seen worse; hell, he had just busted an entire criminal ring, so how bad could the seedy spots be?

    The two of them were seated at a round table for four, in view of the bandstand. Everyone here was also dressed very formally; this was an upscale establishment to be sure. The bandstand was glittering white, and several instruments laid on it while waiting for their musicians to arrive. Laid out in the back were about thirty tables like the one they had just been seated at, each one decorated with nice blue lace and flowers that obviously were grown for this exact purpose. Gark caught a whiff of one as he sat down, and he could tell that they had been placed there for a reason. It smelled magnificent. In front of the bandstand was a nicely polished black surface, which Gark figured was a dance floor of sorts. Obviously this club had dance parties with live music; not bad, he mused, not bad at all.

    “Care for some wine?” asked a server, who even had the handkerchief neatly folded in his suit jacket pocket.

    “No thanks,” Gark said. “At least, not for now.”

    “I’ll have a small glass,” Me’lin said.

    “Any particular one in mind, madam?” asked the server.

    “What do you recommend?”

    “I would personally take the Red Goule, which is a delightful-tasting one that certainly has all the flavor of the berries that produced it, but also a tangy sweetness.”

    “All right, I will have a glass of that. Thank you,” Me’lin said politely. The server nodded his head and walked off to the next table. “This is great,” she commented to Gark. “Thank you for bringing me out here.”

    “Anything for my girl,” Gark said. “I hope you like it. The travel agency said this was a good place to go to just get away.”

    “Looks nice,” his wife commented. “They even have a dance floor. When that’s going on, I should take you up there and force you to dance, because I know you love to.”

    “You know I can’t to save my life,” Gark said. Dancing was not one of his strong suits by any means.

    “Oh come on, one dance won’t kill you,” Me’lin said, punching her husband lightly in the arm.

    “It’s not myself I’m afraid of,” Gark said. “I’d be more likely to accidentally kill someone by running them over in my foolishness of trying to dance.”

    “Oh stop it. You won’t know until you’ve tried it.”

    “I have tried. And I failed. Miserably.”

    “Excuse me, but is anyone sitting there?” came a voice from nearby, breaking up the conversation. Two elegantly-dressed people were standing there, the man inquiring about the seats at the table.

    “Um, no, no one’s sitting there,” Gark said, trying to cover up his mistake.

    “Thank you,” the man said. He and the woman whom Gark presumed was his wife sat down opposite the S’rilys. “If you don’t mind me asking, I’ve never seen you two here before. Tourists?”

    “Pretty much,” Gark replied.

    “Welcome to Trimfi, then,” the man said, his face brightening up a little bit. “Oh, excuse me for being rude. I’m used to having a table by ourselves, so it’s different to have some company when we’re out. Forgive me for not introducing myself. I am Lord Dariza, of the House of Creda, and the Crown Prince of Trimfi. And this is my wife, Lady Dariza.” The woman smiled. “And you are.”

    Gark hesitated to say his real name, but Me’lin elbowed him in the ribs to make sure that he didn’t fib. She didn’t want him to lie about his identity on vacation, and certainly not in front of a member of the royal family of the planet. “Gark S’rily,” Gark finally said.

    “Ah, yes, I’ve heard a great deal about you,” Daraza said, his smile glowing. Gark found it somewhat unnerving, but he didn’t dare say anything. “You’re quite the GM, aren’t you?” Gark nodded. “And also a real humble public servant. Yes, we’ve heard of your deeds out here.”

    “Being a hero must be rough,” Lady Daraza said.

    “Yes, it really is,” Gark said. “I’ve been through some real tight spots in my time doing that.”

    “And this must be your beautiful wife,” Lord Daraza said. He looked over to Me’lin, that sappy grin still on his face. Gark felt like he was dealing with Ondal again, having a ladies-man to deal with. But Me’lin certainly thought the Crown prince was friendly. And handsome, rather handsome . . . wait, did she just think that? “It’s a shame that we have never crossed paths before,” the Prince said. “I must say, Mr. S’rily, you and I share one thing in common. A good taste in women.” Gark chuckled once, but it was more of an unnerved guttural sound than anything else. For some odd reason, this guy rubbed him in an odd way. He didn’t hate the Prince, but for some reason he just felt unnerved about the whole situation. But then he told himself that he needed to just relax; he didn’t need his superhero instincts in this case. Go with the flow his mind said.

    “I must say, you two have good taste in coming here,” the Prince said. “This is our favorite spot to relax when we’ve had a rough day. We come in so often that everyone almost knows us by first name. Except for the fact that we’re members of the royal house, and people don’t dare say our names aloud, even here. Do you know what that’s like, being a celebrity and all?”

    “No, I don’t,” Gark said. “I was raised in the slums, having to fight for every scrap I could get.”

    “How awful!” Lady Daraza said, putting her hand to her mouth in horror.

    “It wasn’t easy, but it taught me a valuable lesson. That I needed to work for everything I had, lest it slip away from me,” Gark continued. “And it’s serviced me to this day.”

    “Interesting,” the Prince said. “I don’t know what that’s like, regrettably. Sometimes things in the palace can be a bit . . . uneventful. But I guess that tonight shall be different, because for once we have much more interesting company. The number of boring bureaucrats I’ve had to deal with when my father brings them over for dinner, it galls me. Some of them can be so pig-headed and stubborn, it’s a wonder anything gets done around here.”

    The server came back and handed Me’lin her wine. She took a small sip. “How do you like it, madam?” the man asked.

    “Exquisite!” Me’lin said. “I’ve never tasted something like this before.” Gark had no idea why she was reverting to a cliché “rich dialect” here, but that didn’t really matter.

    “I am glad you like it,” the server said. “What can I get served for you four before the show begins?”

    “We’ll have the usual,” Lord Daraza said.

    “The steak for you, sir, and the soup for the misses? And the regular wines?” the server asked. The Prince nodded. “And what can I get for you two?” the man said, turning his attention to the S’rilys.

    “Um . . .” Gark said, fumbling to find the menu on the table. He hadn’t even thought this far ahead. His eyes scanned the menu when he grasped it, but he really wasn’t comprehending it. “Uh . . .” Finally he just placed his finger down on an item at random. “I’ll have the . . . Chef’s Special,” he said.

    “Make that two,” Me’lin said.

    “All right, then. I will bring out your drinks shortly, and then the food will be coming along in about twenty minutes.”

    “When does the show begin, Al’bert?” Daraza asked.

    “About fifteen minutes, sir,” the server said. “I am told that the band has some new songs to play.”

    “Glad to hear, and carry on,” the prince said. Al’bert bowed his head and moved on. “The Chef’s special?” he then asked. “How did you ever come up with that?”

    “Intuition,” Gark said, although he was lying.

    “Ah, I see. One of your many secrets, I take it?” the Prince asked.

    Fifteen minutes later, the band began to play. The first song was fast, and got some energy into the audience. That was followed up by a three-part suite, during which the food was served. Gark didn’t really like the taste of the special, which seemed to be some kind of breaded meat that he couldn’t identify, surrounded by strange-looking vegetables. He had never seen these exact varieties before; they looked like nothing he had ever eaten back home on Coruscant. The first bite he had taken out of a large purple vegetable made him contort his face a little before finally swallowing the thing.

    After ten minutes, the band started to play slow dance music as a few of the patrons began to go to the dance floor.

    “I’m going to force you to go out there, like it or not,” Me’lin said, trying to tug on Gark’s shoulder. But the Bothan wouldn’t budge.

    “I’d just embarrass myself,” he said.

    “Terrible dancer?” the Prince asked, amused.

    “That’s putting it mildly,” Gark commented, taking another bite of the foul-tasting vegetable and wishing he hadn’t.

    “All right, then,” the Prince said. He stood up and offered a hand to Me’lin. “Since he won’t, can I have this dance?”

    “I would be honored,” Me’lin said. She stood up, making sure her dress didn’t get caught on the chair, and then took the Prince’s hand. Gark wanted to vomit right then and there; the Prince was too sappy for his tastes. The two walked towards the dance floor, leaving Gark and Lady Daraza back at the table.

    “There he goes,” she said. “Off again with someone he’s just met.”

    “He does that often?” Gark asked.

    “Yes. I don’t really like it, though.”

    “You don’t dance either?” Gark queried.

    “Not much,” the woman replied. “I do when I have to, when there are royal functions and all, but most of the time Allo is stuck without a partner to dance with here. I think that’s the reason why he’s being so accommodating today.”

    “I can tell,” Gark said. He leaned his arm on the table and watched as the Prince and Me’lin stepped onto the dance floor.

    Me’lin looked down at the floor as she stepped onto it. It was so reflective that she could see herself perfectly in its gleam. It was even better than water was at reflections! She then looked at the prince, who smiled back at her. That smile was eerily infectious, and she felt her slight uncertainty about this melt away when she saw this.

    “You look beautiful,” Daraza said.

    “Thank you,” Me’lin said. The Prince then turned to the band, who seemed to be waiting on his word. “Play something slow, please.” The music started up, its slow melody drifting out lazily over the dance floor. The prince put his hand on Me’lin’s back, and she did the same.

    “How good are you at dancing?” the Prince asked.

    “I think I can hold my own,” the Twi’lek said.

    “Good,” the Prince replied. Then he moved his foot, and the dance was on. They two of them started to go around in the formal dance style, neither one of them backing down as they made their way around the set pattern of the style. About twelve other couples were also on the floor, so they weren’t alone. “I must say, you are an excellent dancer,” the Prince said.

    “Thank you,” Me’lin replied.

    “It is so sad that I can’t get my wife to dance here with me,” the Prince continued. “She’s just so afraid that she’s going to trip and make a fool of herself. I think she could do better if she tried . . . but you . . . you’re the best lady I’ve ever danced with.”

    “Gark doesn’t dance,” Me’lin said. “I think he’s not trying to embarrass himself either.”

    The Prince just laughed as they kept on going. “Then we have much more in common than I first realized. You truly are a wonderful woman.”

    Gark watched as the two kept on dancing. They looked so graceful out there, two souls locked in a pattern of dancing that only they could enjoy. But Gark wasn’t gaining any enjoyment out of this. Instead, he could feel the jealousy building in his mind. That was his wife out there, dancing with a man whom she had never met before, and seemed like the kind of guy who loved flirting with women even though he was already married. Gark finally turned his eyes away and tried to finish his food, but after witnessing the dancing scene, it tasted even worse to him than it did before. He finally pushed the plate away from his body, only about half-done with its contents.

    “Not hungry,” he said, when Lady Daraza gave him a funny look.

    “If it makes you feel better, Allo has always been like this,” she said. “It won’t amount to anything. Trust me.”

    Gark just wished she was right. Because his instincts were suspicious, and when that happened, it usually meant that something was up.

    After half an hour or so of dancing, the music ended, and the dancers returned to their tables. “Thank you,” the Prince said. “Can I offer you lodging for the night?”

    “We already have . . .” Gark said, but Me’lin cut him off.

    “We would be honored,” she said. Gark groaned; this was already getting worse.

    “Really? You will enjoy it, I can assure you,” the Prince said, flashing that sappy grin once more. “Come, darling. We have our guests to take back to the estate.”

    Daraza estate

    Gark got out of the luxury speeder and extended his hand for Me’lin to grab as she got out of the vehicle. However, Lord Daraza got his hand in first, and the Twi’lek took it instead. She got out of the speeder, now holding Galin as she did so. The young boy, now about a year and a half old, was now able to walk fully, but his mother wanted to keep him close so that he wouldn’t go running off and get himself lost. That was the last thing she wanted to have happen, especially after the issue they had the year before when fighting Ciscerian Barbosa. Gark looked at Galin; Me’lin was right, he hardly recognized his son. He was growing up so fast; in a year or two he might even begin to hold intelligent conversations instead of babbling about like young children often do, locked in their own little world where they were the true overseers of one and all.

    The four then walked up to the estate’s front door, where a man in a fancy uniform opened the doors for them. “Welcome back, Master,” he said, bowing.

    “Good to be home,” Dariza said. “We have guests tonight, so make sure that the guest room is properly fitted for them.”

    “Will do, sir,” the doorkeeper said, nodding his cap before closing the door behind the party.

    “It’s beautiful!” Me’lin said. The main entrance was stunning. There were tall pillars arcing up to the vaulted ceiling, the stars outside shining through with bright intensity. Off to both sides were doorways, their heavy double doors closed as they awaited to be opened. Down the center was a long carpet, blue like the ocean, that seemingly went on for a hundred yards before terminating at the other end of the estate house.

    “Yes, I very much fancy it myself,” the Prince said. “I do like having this estate to live in. It’s not like the palace, to be sure, but it certainly is home.”

    Then the tour began. The S’rilys were shown the main chamber, which was fabulous for its grandeur and size, then the bathhouse, where there were several options to choose from. The Prince gloated that he could take a long hot shower before going into a sauna, and then a hot tub to stay for any length of time that he wished. Then the formal dining area, which had large glass windows that showed the grassy fields of the planet that stretched out for miles.

    “Allow our butler to show you to your room,” the Prince finally said after the “tour” had ended. The butler appeared and then showed the S’rilys to their room. “I must say, that woman was a fine dancer,” he said to his wife when the visitors were gone.

    “I bet she was, dear,” Lady Daraza said.

    When they reached the guest room, the visitors entered. There were large windows on the other side that had huge purple curtains with golden tassels hanging from the ends. Near them were a large wooden desk, and then right in the center was a four-poster bed, easily big enough for both of them to sleep in and still feel like they were buried in its enormity.

    “Geez, is the bed big enough?” Gark asked sarcastically.

    An hour later, they turned into bed for the night. Me’lin kissed Gark on the cheek before settling in, falling asleep instantly on the plush bed. Gark walked over and put Galin into the small bed that had been provided for him. He placed his son down in the confines of the bed, just taking a look at the younger Bothan. He just seemed so carefree; Gark wished he could say the same about his situation. “You have it good, kid,” he commented quietly. Galin didn’t even look back up at his father; he just sat down on his own volition and drifted off to sleep as well. But Gark didn’t move; he had something to say. “I guess I’m just nervous about all this,” he said to no one, because Galin wasn’t listening. “I just feel . . . uneasy about things. It’s been so long since I’ve had time off to myself. And now I’m stuck in another mess. Maybe I’m just going crazy.” Then he walked back over to his bed and tried to fall asleep. But instead of being able to drift off, he stared at the ceiling for what seemed like an hour. Something seemed out of place, but he didn’t know what it was.


    Part Two

    When morning came, Gark awoke in a daze. He hadn’t slept well this last night, and it seemed like his mood had gotten slightly worse. He tried to feel for Me’lin with his hand as he tried to get his eyes open, but he couldn’t feel her. She had already gotten up. Then Gark tried to turn over, somehow getting himself caught in the sheet and almost flipping onto his gut. Luckily this bed was soft, because otherwise it would have been another spectacular landing. He groaned and then opened his eyes fully, now that he was more awake. He could see Me’lin chatting to the Prince as he was in the door. Gark’s mind shot awake immediately, and he wanted to know why he hadn’t been awoke by the sound of voices in the room.

    “Good morning,” the Prince said to the Twi’lek, Gark still fiddling around in the background trying to free himself from the tangle of sheets that he had somehow created in his sleep.

    “Good morning,” Me’lin said.

    “Would you care to join us for our morning meal?” the Prince asked.

    “Sure,” Me’lin replied. She then turned to look at Gark, whose leg for some reason was now stuck as he tried to get out of the tie-up he had gotten himself into. What a mess, she thought. But she loved the man, despite the awkward situation he had gotten himself into, so at least that made things more tolerable. “Does that invitation go out to all three of us?”

    “Um . . . yes,” the Prince said, hesitating momentarily. Both of them looked at Gark, who had finally freed himself from the sheet.

    “Honey, interested in getting some food with the Prince here?” Me’lin asked.

    “Fine,” Gark said. He got himself off the bed, which took some effort, but was finally able to stand. He looked down, and knew that he was still in his pajamas; not exactly fitting attire, but hey, he had just been asleep.

    “Heavy sleeper?” the prince asked.

    “You could say that,” Gark replied.

    The three S’rilys followed the prince down the hall towards the dining hall. Gark was lagging behind, trying to get a good look at what the Prince was doing. He told Me’lin a joke, and the two of them laughed it up. Gark mumbled to himself; he had a bad feeling about this. Then he felt his foot connect into something solid, and he knew what was coming. The jolt of pain shot into his head, and he winced. What in the hell had he just run into? It looked like a heavily-armored individual, a statue that was watching over the hall like a guardian. And it had, at least if Gark’s toe was an enemy worth fighting back.

    Gark began to limp a little, the pain still evident in his mind. He was so preoccupied with the pain that he almost bowled over a finely-dressed woman. “Excuse me,” she said.

    “No, I . . .” Gark said.

    “Doesn’t matter,” the woman said. “I take it that you are the guest that I’ve been hearing about?”

    “That’s me,” Gark said, unsure of what to say in response. He looked up; he couldn’t see Lord Dariza or Me’lin now. They had gone down a different hallway, and obviously hadn’t stopped to check on him.

    The next thing he felt was a kiss right on the lips. He was confused; what was this all about? He recoiled a little, but not so much that he overreacted. “Wha . . .?” he asked.

    “Oh, I’m sorry,” the woman said. “It’s a very old custom to kiss any newcomer like so in our kingdom. I know it’s not in practice much these days, but I figured that someone of your stature and rank deserved my highest respect and greetings.”

    “That’s great,” Gark said, wiping off his mouth with his sleeve. He hadn’t seen that one coming.

    “Anyways, I must be off, so enjoy your stay, sir,” the woman said before scurrying off. Gark watched her go, still confused about what was going on.

    When he entered the dining hall, after trying to figure out where it was, he could see that the Prince and Me’lin were still hamming it up like they had been long-lost friends who were seeing each other for the first time in ages. He sat down alone on his end of the table, giving them icy glares as he ate in solitude. The prince said another joke, and Me’lin laughed heartily at it. Gark was obviously jealous; he had always been the one to make her crack up, and now to have competition was something he had never experienced before. He thought that marriage would mean that he wouldn’t have jealousy issues. Well, given what he was witnessing, whoever gave him that idea needed to be punched in the mouth.

    The Prince grabbed a piece of fruit on his fork, took his knife to it, and cut the item in two pieces. He then stuck out his fork with the fruit slice on it, and Me’lin used her fork to spear it. She then ate it, obviously enjoying the taste. “It’s good,” she said.

    “I’m glad you like it,” the Prince said. “It’s something we grow here especially at the estate. You won’t find many on this planet, so you should be glad I have an endless stockpile.”

    “I could get used to this,” the Twi’lek said, chomping on her food.

    “Yes, I should say that it is all quite good” the Prince remarked.

    “Well, I think we should get going,” Me’lin said, finally looking in Gark’s direction. The Bothan kept his head down so that they wouldn’t make eye contact. “You’ve been more than generous with us.”

    “It’s the least I could do,” the prince said.

    “Excuse me,” Me’lin finally said. “I need to go get ready for the day.” She stood up and walked out of the hall, carrying Galin with her. Gark, taking this cue, also stood up, not saying anything in the process, before walking out.

    As he left the hall, Gark hoped that he could catch up with his wife, but instead the prince swooped in on him, stopping the Bothan completely. “So, how are you enjoying your stay?” he asked.

    “It’s nice,” Gark deadpanned.

    “Something wrong?” the Prince asked.

    “No, not at all. I’m just tired,” Gark lied. Of course he had a beef, but he wasn’t going to say anything.

    “Your wife is quite the catch,” the prince said. “How did you two meet?”

    “Long story,” Gark said. “I don’t know why she latched on to me, but she did.”

    “Hm, you are one lucky man. She is extraordinary,” the Prince said. “I wish I could have chosen the woman of my dreams. Unfortunately, being the crown prince, my marriage was arranged. My wife is not bad by any means, but I feel like I didn’t get the freedom to choose a woman of my choice. Anyways, I am sorry if I ramble; that happens an awful lot. I don’t have many visitors these days; most of them try to stay away from me as much as possible.” Like me Gark thought. “Did you meet Liliana? She was coming by when we were headed out to eat.”

    “You mean the woman who I ran into?” Gark asked.

    “Perhaps,” the Prince said, shrugging. “I would like to say that she would be quite the catch as well. If only I had a chance to really talk to her, but she keeps scurrying off. I don’t understand that girl, I really don’t.”

    “I don’t like her. Not my type,” Gark commented.

    “I don’t blame you,” the prince said. “You see the galaxy differently when you are married. It changes your perspective on life, doesn’t it?” Gark didn’t reply. “Anyways, if it was a hypothetical universe, and you weren’t married, what about Liliana? Could you love her, despite her clumsiness?”

    “I don’t love her,” Gark said quickly yet firmly. “And I never could. She’s not my type.”

    “I understand that. But if you had to . . .”

    “Just don’t,” Gark said, holding up a hand to shut the Prince up.

    “Apologies,” the Prince replied.

    “I’d like to just be myself,” Gark said. “I could never be in your position.”

    “Tell me about it,” the prince said, sighing.

    “I’ve taken too much of your time,” Gark said.

    “It’s fine,” the Prince said quickly. “But, humor me. If another woman was available . . .”

    “Look, I could never love her, and I would rather kill myself than be with someone like her,” Gark said, angered by this insistence. OK, that had come across as real harsh. He hadn’t meant that. “OK, I didn’t mean that . . .”

    “You’re tired,” the prince said. “And frustrated. I’ve taken too much of your time. I respect that, and I am sorry if I am getting in your way.”

    “No, it’s just . . . I need some time alone,” Gark said. “I’m always busy, and Me’lin seems to want too much of my time. I just can’t juggle everything at once.”

    “Busy?” the prince asked.

    “I think I might need to take some time off,” Gark said. “I need to spend more time with her . . . and you’re doing a better job than I seem to.”

    “Anything to help,” the Prince said.

    “I should be going,” Gark said. He walked down the hall, trying to make sure that he was ready for the day. Meanwhile, the Prince just thumbed the button on the audio recorder before wandering off on his own.


    When it was time for the S’rilys to leave, Gark was all too ready to get out of there. But Me’lin made sure to have one last chat with the Prince before leaving.

    “Keep in touch,” she said.

    “I will,” the prince said. “Hopefully our paths will cross again.”

    “Hopefully they will,” Me’lin said. “Goodbye.” She then joined Gark and Galin in the speeder, which sped out of the estate and back towards town. The Twi’lek looked at Gark, who was staring straight ahead. “You all right?” she asked.

    “Just fine,” Gark said abruptly, not even turning his head. “Don’t worry about me.” But he was worried. Something about the prince’s questions made him wonder even more why he was acting like that. Nothing added up, and Gark was left to try and figure out what was going on.


    Part Three (and the last part for today, just to keep it interesting)

    Simply put, the issues Gark had brought with him from Trimfi were starting to catch up to him. He had a simmering dislike for the royal family there, and when it had been brought up, Me’lin hadn’t taken it too well. And then she had come in with the “spending time” shtick that had been her calling card earlier, and things had started to escalate from there.

    Their tension-filled conversation woke Galin up, and the child looked at his parents with wide eyes, not able to comprehend what they were saying or why they were at odds with each other. “Gark, I want to spend more time with you, but you seem to not be interested in spending time with me! I’m just an accessory for you these days, a throw-in that you try to give as little attention as possible.”

    “You know that’s not true,” Gark said. He was shocked that Me’lin was making these accusations of him! After all he had done for her, she was just turning her back on him! Who, or what, was behind this?

    “It is. And what about these rumors I hear of you cheating on me?” Me’lin asked.

    Gark choked. Wait, what had she just said? He wasn’t cheating on her; he may be spending little time with her, but he would never do something like that. What did she take him for?

    “What the hell are you talking about? I would never cheat on you,” Gark said firmly. “Never.”

    “Then explain this,” Me’lin said. She threw a holo into the air, and Gark caught it. He looked down, and to his horror, it was an image of him. He didn’t recognize the woman, but it certainly was him. What the hell was this from? It had to be a cruel joke; he hadn’t done this.

    “That isn’t me!” Gark said. “I’m being framed!”

    “Oh, it isn’t you, is it?” Me’lin asked stubbornly. “Who’s she?”

    “I’ve never seen her before!” Gark stammered. “This is a set-up!”

    “Exactly! You’ve set me up real nice! I can’t believe you would do something like this to me!” Me’lin said. A tear began to form on her face. “I thought you loved me, but I guess that’s no longer your concern. Men like you are all the same; you have your fun, and then you wander off like dumb animals to the next potential partner. Then I’m left abandoned, and stuck with the emotional baggage. Do you have no shame?”

    “This isn’t me,” Gark said, but he knew he had no chance.

    “And what about this?” Me’lin asked. She held up an audio player. She began to play the recording. Sure enough, it was Gark’s voice.

    ““I don’t love her,” his voice said in a firm tone. “And I never could.” A few seconds passed until another incriminating thing was said. “I would rather kill myself than be with someone like her.” Gark knew he had said these things, but they were taken out of context! What had the prince done to him? He knew the man was bad news, and now his fears were confirmed.

    “Those don’t sound like they are from a man who loves me,” Me’lin said, shutting off the player. “They sound like a guy who is willing to do whatever he wants despite his wife’s insistence on following the pact of marriage. I can’t believe you would say these things about me.”

    “They’re out of context!” Gark exclaimed.

    “Stop lying to me!” Me’lin yelled, shutting Gark up. “That’s all you’ve been doing to me for the past few months. A lie here to placate me, another one to keep my hopeful that you’ll return safe and sound from your next damn mission, and another lie to make me feel wanted. I can’t keep . . .”

    The doorbell rang, and Me’lin angrily went over to see who it was. She wanted to yell at someone. Outside was Liliana, the woman in the holo. Gark had forgotten about her, and when he saw her at the door, his heart sank into his chest. This wouldn’t end well.

    “You!” Me’lin screamed!

    “What?” Liliana asked. “Who?”

    “You’re the little frakker who my husband’s been cheating on me with!” Me’lin said furiously. “I’m going to strangle you!”

    “Please don’t,” Liliana said. “But if you want to bust him, then by all means do so. He was so mean to me,” she said, her face turning from shock to one of tears. She began to sob. “He used me. I was just a toy of his, someone to be discarded by the wayside when he was done with me.”

    Me’lin turned to look at Gark, who knew the storm was coming now. The only question now was if he was going to survive this ordeal. “You set me up,” she said coldly.

    “You don’t understand!” Gark said. He knew there was little chance of success, but he had to try anyways. “I’ve been framed! She set me up!” he said, pointing to Liliana.

    “That’s what they all say,” the woman sobbed, trying to act innocent. “Here,” she said. She handed Me’lin an envelope. “Here are his ‘love’ letters to me.”

    “What?” Gark said. “I only ran into you once! And I never wrote . . .”

    “Shut up!” Me’lin yelled angrily at him. Gark instantly went silent. The Twi’lek opened up the envelope, and out came several letters. She began to read one of them.

    Dear love,

    I know it’s only been a day or two since our last night together, but I feel like I need to get something of my chest. My wife continues to complain about my incompetence, and I want to strangle her, but I know I can’t. There are too many people who look up to me, and out of spite I would like to keep our relationship up so that she stays out in the cold.

    Have I ever mentioned how beautiful you are? My wife can’t hold a candle to you. She could only dream of being like you, single, energetic, and willing to take me on as your secret lover. I just wish my wife gave me the same devotion that you do, because she is too wrapped up in her own world and is overbearing to the point of insanity. I need to get away from her and towards you.

    Sincerely, and truly yours,

    Gark S’rily

    Me’lin read and re-read the letter. The signature was definitely Gark’s; he must have written this. She then tore it up and let the shreds fall to the floor.

    “Well, if you won’t be needing me, I’ll be trying to mend my life,” Liliana said, still sobbing. She then walked away.

    Me’lin slammed the door and turned to Gark. “You wrote these?” she yelled. “How could you?”

    “I never wrote anything!” Gark said. “Maybe a few team memos, but nothing else!”

    “I see how it is, Gark,” Me’lin said. “I’m too overbearing for you, and want too much of your time. I’m just a deadweight on your shoulders that you don’t want. You want freely-given love, but don’t want to be constrained by just one woman to receive that from. I’ve remained loyal to you for so long . . . 2 whole years . . . doesn’t that count for something? But instead of being here with me, you’re out at the bar, hanging out with your buddies, talking about how many women you’re with and gloating about your accomplishments with them while I’m left to deal with the psychological trauma of not being good enough for you! I was wrong for entering into this relationship with you; it was a mistake all along. I made a terrible judgment when you proposed and accepted. I wish Calo Mornd had killed you, and your stinking body would still be buried below the damn Limmie field so that you wouldn’t be alive!”

    Gark couldn’t believe he was hearing this. Me’lin was going berserk, and then some. She was saying things that were so farfetched and untrue you would think that she had lost her mind. And in a way she had, but in her anger she didn’t realize that she was saying all of these things. But there was nothing Gark could say that would get her off her rant here; she wasn’t finished, and by the looks of it she wasn’t going to let this end well.

    “What about Galin?” Me’lin continued. “He needs a father figure who is always there and is willing to help him grow! But since you’re off with loose women and blaspheming me behind my back, he doesn’t get that attention he needs from you, and I’m forced to try to be everything for him. That doesn’t work.”

    “You want me to spend more time with him? Fine, I will,” Gark said. “This whole problem isn’t mine! It’s from that stupid Prince Dorito, or whatever in the hell his name was!”

    “How dare you say that!” Me’lin shouted at him. “He’s a good man, unlike you!”

    “Oh, and I’m supposed to believe that you wouldn’t have slept with him behind my back had I not been there?”

    “What do you take me for, street trash?!”

    “No! But he was manipulating you, just like he is setting me up!” Gark yelled out.

    “Allo would never do that to me!” Me’lin shot back.

    “Oh, so you’re such great pals that you’re on a first-name basis now, hm?” Gark replied back with a barb of his own.

    “He was trying to be friendly! It’s not my fault you didn’t want to dance, and he was nice enough to step in so that I wasn’t forced to dance by myself!”

    “He was hitting on you!” Gark fired back. “I saw the whole damn thing! Can’t you see? He doesn’t want you for anything but his own personal gain!”

    “How dare you say that! He’s a better friend than you’ll ever be!”

    “ ‘Lin, I’m not going to sugarcoat this. I don’t want you to ever see him again, understand? He’s trying to drive us apart, under the guise of being a friend who is nice to his guests! The whole reason he let us stay at his estate was so that he could get a chance to work on you a little bit, try to soften you up so he could move in! And I’m being victimized in his greed! Don’t you get it?”

    “You’re just jealous.”

    “Jealous of what?” Gark asked back. “I’m not jealous of him. He’s a preppy, spoiled, monarchist brat! He’s never had a life outside of the royal family on that damn planet, and is obviously happy to try and drive a wedge between the two of us because he can! Why won’t you listen to me?”

    “You’re lying!” Me’lin screamed. Their voices were getting louder and louder with each salvo of words that was shot back and forth between the two of them. “You’re a liar, and I don’t want to hear any more of your tall tales! At least Allo likes me enough to make me feel appreciated, to feel wanted, to feel like I’m more than just a woman who you can drag around to all of the team events and show off like a shiny trophy! I want to be more than just a slave to your whims! I’m my own damn woman, and I’m going to make sure that you understand!”

    “What, you want me to spend more time than you, pamper you, make you feel special? Hm? I can do that!” Gark said. He meant it.

    “It’s too late for that,” Me’lin said. Another tear dropped onto her cheek. “I want a divorce.”

    This statement sent Gark’s already-crazy world completely upside down. Me’lin was going to leave him? His knees got weak, and he was so stressed out that he couldn’t say a single thing. It was a feeling that he hadn’t experienced in a long time, the feeling of utter helplessness.

    “I wanted things to work out between us, but it’s obvious to me that they won’t,” Me’lin continued. “You never wanted me for more than just my looks and my body, and now I’m putting my foot down. You used me, and I never want to see your sniveling little face again.” She moved her ring finger up so that Gark could see it, and then plucked the wedding ring he had given her off her finger, depositing it in the palm of her hand. Then she stormed into the bedroom. Gark, unsure of what was going to follow, just stood there, still shocked that his wife said she wanted a divorce. After all they had been through; the Siege of the Senate, when she had been so happy to see him alive, the proposal, their first days together, buying this house so that they could live together, their wedding day, the joyousness they were going to have together for the rest of their lives. What about her pregnancy, when they knew that Galin was coming and would change them? What about when Gark had thought he had lost her in childbirth? Or when he had been at the hospital for a week straight to keep her company after Galin was born? Didn’t that count for something? Or how she had devotedly saved him from his carbonite prison and helped him bring down Fek Widor and Ciscerian Barbosa? Didn’t anything in that list mean anything to her anymore?

    After a few minutes, Me’lin came out, carrying two large luggage bags with her, one in each hand. She then placed one on the floor and grabbed Galin, who was trying to look up at his parents and expect attention to suddenly be brought to him. “Don’t come trying to find me, because I’m going to be long gone,” she said. “Good bye.” That had been a rough statement, and then she was off, kicking the front door shut behind her. Gark heard her close the door to her speeder and then drive off wildly, trying to get away while she could.

    Gark tried to take inventory of the situation. Me’lin had left him over evidence that was shaky at best. He had never cheated on her, not once. She had cheated on him with Ondal, but he had forgiven her for that. She had been lost without him, and he had come back to help her out. But now she wasn’t giving him a chance to redeem himself. He looked down at the floor, then at where Galin had been, and then walked into the bedroom. She had taken her stuff from the room, leaving only his items. He was single once again, an out-of-luck loser bachelor with no romantic prospects. Why did this seem so familiar?

    Then he thought of the Prince. That frakker had set him up! Liliana was just one piece of all this; Gark knew that Lord Daraza was behind all this. The words in the recordings had been his, but they were taken out of context. And then the holo of him kissing the woman? That hadn’t been his fault. Strange custom indeed. He was just being used.

    Gark then reached Me’lin’s old nightstand. It was sturdily constructed, so he placed a hand on it. But then he couldn’t take any more. He let out a huge bloodlust roar, throwing the nightstand onto the floor and causing it to fracture on impact. Then he punched his fist into the wall in anger, knowing that it would most likely end with a hole in it. But he didn’t care; a hole could be fixed. The hole in his heart, that was another matter.
  17. Jedi Gunny

    Jedi Gunny Yahtzee Host star 9 VIP - Game Host

    May 20, 2008
    And here is the "actual story". I figured it would be easier to keep this in a separate post so that it can be easily delineated from the deleted arc.

    TAGS: jcgoble3, epithree, Trieste, Admiral Volshe

    Another Note: The beginning of the story up through the wine bit in the restaurant is the same in both. What happens afterwards is definitely not. Or is it?

    Gark ripped off his superhero mask, revealing the sweaty mass of fur on his face. He had just been through hell and back in his fight to break up a notorious spice ring. It hadn’t been easy work; the criminals were smart, and had come out swinging with all the force they had. It took quite a while to put them down so that the police could arrest them, and the Bothan was exhausted. He needed some time off; it had only been a few weeks earlier that he had helped take down the Double Threat Duo, and yet he was already back to being the protector that the planet needed him to be. He had been consumed in this line of work for so long, it seemed, that he ate, slept, and breathed his crimefighter persona. But sometimes being a hero didn’t pay.

    He eventually was able to get out of his superhero suit and don his regular everyday clothes once more before driving home, something that he figured would be in his best interest. If people on the sidewalks saw Superbothan driving a speeder, they might freak out. Besides, the suit definitely needed washing. When he got home, he made sure to throw the suit into the washer so that the stains, sweat, and crusted blood could be cleaned off and make the suit pristine once again. However, next to the washer was a pile of clothes, and he knew that he couldn’t have them in there with the suit. No reason to jeopardize his life in case the other clothes accidentally ripped a hole in the suit, or even change its color. Red items were especially tricky in this regard. As soon as he was done, he wanted to go make a sandwich for himself. However, he didn’t get far before a very annoyed Me’lin showed up in the doorway.

    “Where’ve you been?” she demanded.

    “Uh, just out and about,” Gark lied.

    “You were out in the suit again, weren’t you?” the Twi’lek asked.

    “Fine, I was. But it was a big case!” Gark conceded. “Took down an entire drug ring by myself. Not bad for a few days’ work.”

    “Gark, we’ve talked about this,” Me’lin replied. “You promised me . . .”

    “I know,” Gark said. “I keep meaning to take some time off, but . . .”

    “But what?” Me’lin asked, still frowning. “While you’ve been out galavanting after criminals and thugs, I’ve been stuck here, going to work, doing chores, running the house. And Galin, what about him? You’re so busy that you don’t even see your son that much anymore. What is it going to take to get you to take some time with your family instead of putting your head in the line of fire all the time? I know you want to make things better for everyone, but what about for me? When will I be as important as the people you are trying to save?”

    Gark bit his lip. She had a point; he was ignoring them. It wasn’t intentional by any means; that was just the way it was being a superhero. One had to put the needs of the many over the needs of the few, or the one, as the saying went. But she had a point regardless.

    “Look, I know you’re upset,” Gark said. “You want to just get away for a week or so? You know, spend some quality family time?”

    “It’s a start,” Me’lin said. Obviously this wasn’t quite what she had hoped for. “But this time you won’t be suckering me into work or the superhero thing, OK? This better not be for some conference or so that you can talk to informants about another big case . . .”

    “Of course not,” Gark said, taken aback. How could his offer have been construed that way? “Just the three of us, spending time together. Isn’t that what you want?”

    “Yes!” Me’lin exclaimed in an annoyed fashion. “Why did it take you so long to figure that out?”

    “Because I’m a stuck-up jerk?” Gark asked.

    “Exactly!” his wife said, folding her arms again. “Now, where did you have in mind?”

    “Somewhere new,” Gark said. “I hear that there’s this really nice planet in the Mid Rim called Trimfi. I think it might be time we check them out.”

    “Never heard of it,” Me’lin said, shrugging.

    “It’s not that well-known galaxy-wide, so I think it would be a great place to get away to,” Gark said. “Come on. I’ll help you pack.”

    Days Later

    Gark and Me’lin entered the restaurant, both dressed to the teeth. Gark was wearing his (admittedly hated) suit and dress slacks, while Me’lin wore a flowing black dress that Gark found to be stunning. Apparently Trimfi had an upscale district in its midtown region, and therefore the S’rilys went there instead of going to a seedier part of the area, which, if the people were to be believed, really wasn’t that bad. Gark knew he had seen worse; hell, he had just busted an entire criminal ring, so how bad could the seedy spots be?

    The two of them were seated at a round table for four, in view of the bandstand. Everyone here was also dressed very formally; this was an upscale establishment to be sure. The bandstand was glittering white, and several instruments laid on it while waiting for their musicians to arrive. Laid out in the back were about thirty tables like the one they had just been seated at, each one decorated with nice blue lace and flowers that obviously were grown for this exact purpose. Gark caught a whiff of one as he sat down, and he could tell that they had been placed there for a reason. It smelled magnificent. In front of the bandstand was a nicely polished black surface, which Gark figured was a dance floor of sorts. Obviously this club had dance parties with live music; not bad, he mused, not bad at all.

    “Care for some wine?” asked a server, who even had the handkerchief neatly folded in his suit jacket pocket.

    “No thanks,” Gark said. “At least, not for now.”

    “I’ll have a small glass,” Me’lin said.

    “Any particular one in mind, madam?” asked the server.

    “What do you recommend?”

    “I would personally take the Red Goule, which is a delightful-tasting one that certainly has all the flavor of the berries that produced it, but also a tangy sweetness.”

    “All right, I will have a glass of that. Thank you,” Me’lin said politely. The server nodded his head and walked off to the next table. “This is great,” she commented to Gark. “Thank you for bringing me out here.”

    “Anything for my girl,” Gark said. “I hope you like it. The travel agency said this was a good place to go to just get away.”

    “Looks nice,” his wife commented. “They even have a dance floor. When that’s going on, I should take you up there and force you to dance, because I know you love to.”

    “You know I can’t to save my life,” Gark said. Dancing was not one of his strong suits by any means.

    “Oh come on, one dance won’t kill you,” Me’lin said, punching her husband lightly in the arm.

    “It’s not myself I’m afraid of,” Gark said. “I’d be more likely to accidentally kill someone by running them over in my foolishness of trying to dance.”

    “Oh stop it. You won’t know until you’ve tried it.”

    “I have tried. And I failed. Miserably.”

    The next thing he could feel was his hand being dragged out of his seat by his wife and forced to go to the dance floor. The floor was pitch black, with its shininess casting soft light back up into the air above it. As soon as Gark got to the dance floor, he wanted to escape, to find any way he could off its surface. He wasn’t kidding when he said he sucked at dancing; it had never been a strong suit of his, and now he was about to make a fool of himself in front of all these people, some eating, some chatting, and yet others dancing or watching those out on the floor.

    “This is going to be a disaster,” Gark commented.

    “No it isn’t,” Me’lin said. “Just follow my lead.” She moved Gark’s hand onto her back, and then got into her dancing stance, waiting for the opportune moment to start off. Gark had no idea what he was doing, and hoped that he wouldn’t fall over as soon as the music began.

    And finally the band struck up its first tune. Gark could feel his body being jerked out of its spot unceremoniously as the dance began, and he could already feel his lead feet acting up. Me’lin was graceful as she went around in her pattern, knowing exactly what to do and when. The Bothan tried to keep up, but he knew that he was going at it all wrong. Hopefully he wouldn’t get chewed out too badly for this mistake-filled debacle.

    What seemed like an hour later, the two of them returned to their table, even though it was only about fifteen minutes in actuality. Gark sat back in his seat, completely exhausted by the amount of strain he had gone through to keep up and not break down on the floor in front of all the other dancers. That would have been embarrassing not only to him, but also to his wife. Me’lin looked decently satisfied, given the circumstances.

    “That was terrible,” Gark said.

    “Don’t say that,” the Twi’lek said sternly. “You were learning. You have to fail several times before you get better. Don’t give up.”

    “So, what sounds interesting to eat?” Gark asked, trying to change the subject.

    “Well, I . . .” Me’lin picked up the menu and began to scan its contents. “Hm . . . nerf steak . . .”

    “Nope,” Gark said. “Too dry.”

    “Burger . . .”

    “Good, but I had one yesterday . . .”

    “Do you really spend all this time thinking about your stomach?” his wife asked.

    “No. I just am making comments about the items,” Gark said.

    “Are you two ready to order?” said a server, who had come out of nowhere to be up to their table.

    “Uh . . .” Gark said, but Me’lin beat him to the punch.

    “I’ll have the House Soup,” she said. “And a side salad with that.”

    “Very good,” the server said. He then turned to Gark, who fumbled for the menu. The Bothan, knowing that his time was short here, closed his eyes and pressed his finger onto an item.

    “I’ll have the House Special,” he said.

    “Grilled or fried?” asked the server. Hm, Gark didn’t know what the difference would be, since he had no idea what he was even getting.

    “Uh . . . grilled . . .” Gark quickly said. “And a salad as well.”

    When the server moved away, Me’lin gave Gark an odd look. “What?” the Bothan asked.

    “The special today didn’t sound all that appealing,” his wife said, grinning.

    “I was rushed into making a decision,” Gark said. “Had we not gone dancing, I might have taken more time to select something palatable.”

    “Oh get off it,” Me’lin said, punching her husband in the shoulder.

    The next thing they heard was a blaster shot, and some screaming off to the far side of the establishment. Gark, with his senses attuned to these kinds of sounds from his crimefighting gigs, instantly assessed the situation. He had no idea what was going on, but if there was any threat to the two of them, he would have to act now. What could he do? He had noticed the multiple entrances and exits on the way in, but those would probably be filled with people running for their lives if this really was a problem. If it was just some drunk, then perhaps things could be settled in some other way.

    These thoughts went out of his head as he saw several masked men enter the hall, brandishing weapons in their hand. Gark knew that this wasn’t going to be pretty, and before she could react, pushed Me’lin below the table so that she was out of eyesight. Then he joined her under the table, taking the wine glasses off as he went to try and hide their presence.

    “What’s going on?” Me’lin asked, trying to stay quiet as the band abruptly quit playing, causing an awkward silence to fall on the hall itself.

    “No idea,” Gark said. “We watch and wait.”

    The masked men started to round up the other patrons in the hall, trying to rob them as they went. The S’rilys, still hidden underneath their table, watched as everything went down.

    One woman struggled to retain her purse, after which she was hit in the face with the butt of a blaster and sent down to the ground, unconscious. Gark assumed that she had fainted after impact, but that was no matter. What the hell was going on here? He had taken time off for vacation to get away from all this, and now it had found him again. At least Me’lin couldn’t blame him for getting into this willingly, because he had no idea this was coming.

    Finally another masked man entered the room, but he looked different than the others. There was something even more sinister about this one, Gark mused. This was not a typical robbery; something else was going on.

    “Calm yourselves down, people,” the new man said in an oddly calm voice. “We are not here to harass anyone beyond our means.” The huddled patrons were confused; what was all this about? “I have been informed that the King of your nation has been deposed after he was found to be in violation of the laws of this nation and of these people. He has thus been removed from office, and the throne is now being presided upon by someone stronger, someone who will make things right here on Trimfi. You have for too long been subject to tyranny, and that will soon change. People of Trimfi, do not fear; things will be better, I promise.”

    “Sounds like a stick-up to me,” Me’lin whispered.

    “Sounds like a governmental coup to me,” Gark replied. This was great, wasn’t it? He had gotten out here for vacation to get away, and now the first night he was here the nation was already undergoing a change in leadership. Why did this always happen to him?

    “How do you suppose we get out?” Me’lin asked, but Gark put his hand up. He wanted to hear what an old man from the rounded-up group was saying.

    “And why should we believe you?” the gray-haired man asked.

    “Because we are the ones with the big stick, sir,” the “leader” said. “And as such, I would not concern yourself with details. Be calm, and no harm will come to you.”

    “You just knocked this lady out!” the man exclaimed. “How can we be calm? You’re here to rob us!”

    “Be calm,” the masked man said, but you could tell that there was more edge to his voice.

    “We need to get out of here,” Gark said. “Any ideas?”

    “Nope,” his wife replied.

    “I noticed earlier that there are exits not too far away. If we can just get a distraction . . .” Gark said.

    The masked men were starting to try to keep the patrons in line, who were becoming unruly. They seemed like an older crowd, but the masked figures were taking no chances in dealing with them. Obviously they were afraid to use real force, since doing so might hurt their cause, whatever that was. So they were trying crowd control the old-fashioned way, by using persuasion and calmness to deal with their problems.

    “Now’s our chance. Go!” Gark hissed. Me’lin slid out from underneath the table, followed by Gark, and they slipped out the service door, which had for some reason been left open. The two of them, staying low as they entered the kitchen, made sure to keep their eyes open as they went along.

    The kitchen was remarkably clean, which didn’t surprise either of them as they snuck through it, the sounds of the crowd outside in the hall still audible. This was quite the place to dine; it was too bad that things hadn’t quite turned out as planned. Gark’s eyes moved to a bowl of soup; was that Me’lin’s soup, now sitting here unwanted? Waste not want not, the saying went.

    “I think that might be yours,” Gark said, motioning to the soup. “You could take it ‘To-Go’ if you want.”

    “We’re in the middle of a crappy situation, and you’re thinking about food?” his wife asked, shocked.

    “I’m just doing what I can to get this off my mind,” Gark said. “I don’t like this. It isn’t a normal robbery; something’s afoot, but I don’t know what . . .”

    “You seem to have gotten us into a fine mess,” Me’lin said.

    “I had nothing to do with it,” Gark said. “The idea here was to get away and take some time off from life. And now it seems that crime has caught up to me. Great.” He stuck his finger in the soup and then licked it; hm, that didn’t taste half bad. Too bad they had to leave it behind. Wait, no, he could get this dished. He stood up foolishly and poured the soup into a take-out bowl.

    “Glutton,” Me’lin commented.

    “You never know when this could come in handy,” Gark said. “I’m a fan of always being prepared. One never knows if food will become scarce at some point, especially good stuff like this.” His wife just shook her head, but kept moving.

    “I swear, sneaking around in these things is a pain,” she said. Her high heels, even though they weren’t that high, were becoming annoying, as were the ends of her flowing black dress.

    “I thought you didn’t like heels to begin with,” Gark said.

    “Heels I’m fine with. Sneaking around in them, not so much,” Me’lin replied. “I’ll never make a good superspy in them, all right?”

    “Hey, I think you have the looks down,” Gark said.

    “Focus, would you?”

    “All right,” the Bothan replied. They had reached the end of the kitchen, and the door there spat out into the main lobby of the building. Gark stood next to the small window; there was only one guard out near the door, the bodies of unconscious staff lying on the ground around the man’s feet. “There’s a guard,” he said.

    “Only takes one to sound the alarm,” Me’lin replied.

    “Then we’ll do it real quiet-like,” Gark said. “Follow me.” He opened the door and slipped outside, his wife hot on his heels. Staying out of sight, Gark assessed the situation. If he could get the guard away from the door, he’d have a chance here to get out in one piece without sounding the alarm. If only he had something to throw . . .

    The next thing he saw was a clipboard. Archaic technology as it was, it might serve as a good distraction. Picking it up, he then aimed it low. This had better work, because if they were spotted, all hell might break loose. He chucked it across the floor noisily, and the guard looked at it as it slid across the smooth floor.

    “What the hell?” he said.

    He turned back to see where the object had come from, but he had run out of time. Gark was right on him, sending him down with a chop to the neck and then a groin shot. The man crumpled to the ground, and then Gark kicked him across the face to silence him before he could get the attention of his compatriots in the main hall.

    “Good work,” Me’lin commented.

    “Let’s go,” Gark said. The two of them burst out of the door and then snaked their way around the edge of the building, making sure to look for any more hostile operators. Thankfully, there weren’t any, so the two of them could catch their breath, at least for a moment.

    “Now what?” Me’lin asked.

    “Well, it sounds like there may be a coup going on, and I don’t want to be caught up in all that,” Gark replied. “We need to get the hell out of here.”

    “But if there is a coup, and what we saw is any indication, we could be stuck here a long time,” his wife replied.

    “True,” Gark said, rubbing his chin with the hand that wasn’t holding the soup container. It felt surprisingly warm in his hands, warmth that he knew he needed in an otherwise-frosty situation.

    “What about Galin?” Me’lin asked. They had forgotten all about their year-old son, who had been left with a sitter for the night. If there really was a coup, they would have to retrieve him, and fast.

    “First, we need to figure out what in the hell is going on,” Gark said.

    The answer came as people ran down the street, prompting the two to find a hiding spot behind a bush. They looked out as a military-grade speeder rumbled through the streets. A voice came over loudspeakers built into the vehicle.

    “The king has been overthrown, and no one is safe in case he decides to strike back. All citizens are urged to remain indoors. I repeat, all citizens are urged to stay indoors.”

    “That do it for you?” the Twi’lek asked.

    “Yep,” Gark said. “We need to get Galin, and then find a place to hunker down for a while.”


    The two S’rilys got back to the house where Galin was being babysat without being detected. Either that, or they had been found, but hadn’t been caught up to as of yet. With a sense of urgency, Me’lin knocked on the door. No response. She tried again, but no one responded.

    “Dammit,” she cursed under her breath. “The longer we stay out here, the more likely they will find us.”

    “True that,” Gark said. “I could just break in . . .”

    “Gark!” Me’lin said, shocked.

    “What?” Gark replied. “You have any other ideas?”

    Then the door opened, and a face peered out. “Oh, it’s you,” the woman said. “Come on in, quickly!” The two of them were whisked inside, and the door was shut. “Your son is doing fine, but I think all of this excitement has him on edge.”

    “Do you know what’s going on?” Gark asked.

    “There’s been a military-style coup,” the woman, about sixty standard years old, said. “The king has been overthrown by masked vigilantes, but they haven’t said who they are or what they want. I have no idea what their goals are, especially since the king isn’t the leader of the nation.”

    “Wait, what?” Gark asked.

    “The king is just a figurehead,” the woman replied. “He has some authority, but we are a democracy. The people make most decisions, and he can put in his input when he feels it necessary. But I have a bad feeling that this will try to change all that.”

    “How so?”

    “The king is allowed to overrule the government in extreme emergencies,” the woman replied. “I am afraid that if anyone wanting to abuse power can take office, they will overrule our democratic process, which is a violation of everything that the previous kings have worked towards in accordance with the citizens.”

    “Is there any way off the planet?” Gark asked.

    “No,” the woman replied. “They’ve shut down the starport completely.”

    “Then we definitely need a place to hunker down,” Gark said. “We’ll take our son and get out of your hair.”

    “Are you crazy?” the woman asked. “It’s not safe out there!”

    “We don’t want to be a burden,” Gark replied. “I don’t know what these fr-,” he said before being cut off by Me’lin “clearing her throat”. Gark looked back to see Galin staring up at the three of them in a state of distress. His wife didn’t want the elder S’rily to cuss in front of their son, so Gark changed direction. “I don’t know what is going on, and why, but I’ve got more than I’ve bargained for on this trip already. I’d like to find a way out and get back to someplace in a little better shape.”

    “Your best bet is to find shelter somewhere outside of the city,” the woman said. “But you’ll have to be careful. There are military patrols all over the downtown area. You’ll have to tread carefully if you want to get out.”

    “I don’t know how we can thank you,” Gark said. “Sorry this had to happen.”

    “It’s not your fault,” the woman said. “Take care, you three.” Gark made sure to pay her the sitting fee, and then turned to see Me’lin try to settle Galin down. The young Bothan seemed relieved to have his mother right there in his time of distress, but there was still something about him that exuded fear.

    The three of them finally left the house and made their way down back alleys out of the city. It was extremely difficult to get through some of those places without being seen, but they had gotten through nevertheless. It was too dangerous to return to their hotel room, at least for the moment. They would have to find a place to stay for the night.

    “What do you suggest?” Gark asked as they moved through yet another side alley.

    “We could find an abandoned building,” his wife offered, trying to keep Galin quiet while they went along.

    “Too risky,” Gark said. “These military types sometimes camp out there.”

    Then, he saw the butt of a blaster, and he tripped on a small protrusion out of the ground as he scrambled to the wall. A masked figure came through the nearby area, ready to shoot. He hadn’t seen the three S’rilys as they were plastered against the wall, and eventually kept moving on.

    “That was too close,” Gark mouthed. Me’lin nodded. Gark then looked down at what he had tripped over; it seemed to be some kind of trap door. He pushed it out further to reveal a small set of stairs. Poking his head down into the space, he could tell that it was unoccupied. He then motioned to Me’lin to get in, and when she did, he went in after her and closed the door behind them.

    The space seemed to be a small cellar. It was a dusty place, filled with lots of fine particles that resided everywhere. Gark looked around for some items on the sparse shelving unit, but there was only a rol of disposable towels, a few old books, a blaster pistol with one power pack that looked somewhat used, and a tin can. When Gark picked it up, it didn’t look at all appealing. What he did notice at this point was a small utensil; they could use it as a spoon.

    But things had to be done first to make the area more accommodating. Gark unwrapped most of the roll of towels and laid them out on the floor. After he was done, Me’lin placed Galin on the surface of the towels. The child didn’t seem to understand what was going on, and he thought the towels were quite soft. Then his parents sat down around him, Gark taking the lid off the soup container. “This is why you are always prepared,” he said, then taking the utensil and cleaning it with one of the spare towels. “Eat up.”

    “Don’t you need some?” his wife asked.

    “No, I’ll go without,” Gark said.

    “Are you sure?”

    “Yeah,” Gark replied.

    “You don’t have to do this to be macho,” Me’lin commented.

    “I’m doing it because I know you two need it more than I do,” Gark said.

    “Does this have something to do with the things I said earlier?” Me’lin asked as she placed the spoon-like utensil in the now-lukewarm soup.

    “No,” Gark said. “I’d hate for you two to go unfed on my account.”


    “Yep,” Gark replied.

    Me’lin made sure to give Galin a spoonful before she ate one herself. The soup tasted good, even though it was no longer warm, and it wasn’t accompanied by a nice side salad and the wine. The young Bothan looked somewhat cheery after being fed, and then it was obviously time for him to go to sleep, since the food seemed to have triggered a bout of sleepiness in his body. He finally fell asleep on the towel “blanket” that had been laid out, letting his parents have a moment to themselves.

    “You think we’ll get out of this?” Me’lin asked.

    “I think we will,” Gark said. “But it’s not going to be easy.”

    “When are things ever easy when you’re around?” Me’lin said, sighing.

    “That’s what I’m afraid of,” the Bothan replied.

    NOTE: Now you guys get to determine what stays in this storyline from the deleted scene, and what isn't included. Keeps the drama that way. [face_mischief]
  18. jcgoble3

    jcgoble3 Jedi Grand Master star 5

    Nov 7, 2010
    Both versions are great, though I can totally see why the first one was cut. Let's just keep any thought of a divorce away from this story and things will be great. :)
  19. Jedi Gunny

    Jedi Gunny Yahtzee Host star 9 VIP - Game Host

    May 20, 2008
    Here's the next piece of the deleted story. I will come back in two days with the next installment of the actual story.

    TAGS: jcgoble3, Trieste

    Gark sat down at the bar, taking another long swig of alcohol as he stared blankly off into the distance. It had been five days since Me’lin had left him, taking Galin and a large piece of his life with her. These last week had been a real blur, even though he wasn’t sleeping, was hardly eating, and was now trying to drown his sorrows in booze. He wasn’t a drinker by any means, but convention didn’t matter now. He was depressed, a man who seemed to have lost his drive once again. It wasn’t unfamiliar territory for him by any means, but he thought he was past all this. Why had Prince Daraza done this to him? What was his motivation for driving him and Me’lin apart? Was it a fake love that the Prince had? A fling that he wanted to have? Or did he really care for the Twi’lek, and do everything for her that Gark couldn’t? Whatever the reason, he had won, and the loser was now trying to cover up his past and run away from his demons once again.

    The day after she had left him, he wanted to take the super suit out of its case and tear it to shreds. It had been one of the causes of his misery; even looking at it reminded him of Me’lin’s words about him ignoring her. She was right, too; he had been so wrapped up in his superhero work, not to mention GMing, that he hadn’t given her the attention she needed. He had once told Zeke Barbosa that women needed a certain amount of attention to be happy in a relationship. That was back when things seemed more stable between the two, back when their love for each other seemed to be eternal, like it could never be broken. But now it had, and Gark had been tossed down the well once more, trying to desperately to climb out and start anew in the only way he knew how. And that way out usually was Limmie.

    But Limmie wasn’t interesting now. For the first time in his life, he wondered if the game was really all he had to look forward to. Before he had gotten married, he thought that Limmie was everything, and would always be there to support him when he fell. But then, in 270, while in exile, he realized that even when he missed the game, did it really miss him? The sun would come up the next day without Gark S’rily being there to be a part of the Coruscant Senators, and things would go on as normal. There would be a day when the League would be able to move on from him, but the credits would still flow, goals would be scored, and dreams would be made. Therefore, what was his purpose?

    Someone sat next to him at the bar and then placed a hand on his shoulder. Gark wanted to lash out, make whoever it was pay for touching him in his time of crisis. But then he looked up at the face of Polis Vayne. The former Senator player and current positional coach looked back at him. “Finally found you,” he said. “Hadn’t heard from you in a while.” Gark said nothing, taking another swig of alcohol. This was his third beer in about twenty minutes; never before had he chugged so much alcohol so quickly, not even in college when he had been dragged to parties by Ondal Nalcrissan.

    “Really, man, what’s up?” Polis asked. “Meredith heard some shouting a few nights ago from your house, but we didn’t think anything of it. So I came by your house the next day, and you weren’t in. What’s going on?”

    “Nothing’s going on,” Gark said in a deadpan voice.

    “You really think I’ll believe that?” Polis asked. “I know you too well. You’re not telling me something.”

    “Get away from me,” Gark said.


    “I said get away from me!” Gark exclaimed loudly. All eyes in the bar turned to face him, the place growing deadly silent. Polis grabbed Gark in the shoulder and dragged him off the barstool and away from his drink, much to the Bothan’s chagrin. Polis then opened the door to the bar, walked outside, and then plastered Gark to the wall with his hand. Gark struggled to get free, but Polis’ grip was too strong.

    “I asked you a question,” he said. “Where have you been the last few days?”

    “It’s none of your business, Polis,” Gark replied.

    “I’m sure it is,” Polis said. “Now, tell me what’s on your mind.” He tightened his grip on Gark, causing the Bothan to cough. “Tell me!”

    “Fine, you want to know?” Gark asked. “Me’lin left me, all right?”


    “You heard me. She left me and isn’t coming back.”

    “What the hell did you do?” Polis asked furiously. His grip tightened even more, making Gark even more interested in getting free for self-preservation purposes.

    “Nothing,” Gark said.

    “Obviously you did something wrong,” Polis said. “Even Meredith and I have our rough spots at times. But you know something? We smooth them out. That’s what a couple does, and you failed.”

    “It’s not my fault,” Gark said. Polis then punched him in the face. Gark, who hadn’t been expecting this, had his head snap back a little.

    “Dammit, of course it’s your fault!” Polis yelled into Gark’s face, a grim look on his face. “When I looked at you two, I thought you really had something going for you! You two seemed happy! And now you’ve hurt her so badly that she left? What the hell happened to the guy who gave us inspiration to keep playing the game even when the game, and life, beat us down, hm? What about the guy who, despite all the odds, somehow was able to change public opinion by working his ass off? What happened to him? You’re a loser, and that’s all you’ll ever be.” Polis then let Gark drop, and the Bothan tumbled to the ground.

    “She ran off with another man who was chasing her,” Gark said, now looking down at the pavement.


    “You heard me,” Gark replied bitterly. “She’s off with another man. I tried to stop her, but she insisted. And it didn’t help matters that he set me up.”

    “What do you mean ‘set you up’?” Polis asked. “It’s obviously something you did . . .”

    “He recorded messages of me saying things, out of context, that made me sound like I hated her,” Gark said. “He had one of his lackeys even kiss me without my consent and then give ‘testimony’ that I was cheating on Me’lin with her.”


    “I did no such thing,” Gark said, picking himself off the ground. “I loved her, and then this loser Dorito, or whatever his name was, came in and drove her away from me. She was everything to me, you understand? Every damn time I went on a mission as the ‘Masked Avenger’, you know what? I told myself that I had something to come back home for at the end of the day. Because she would be there to welcome me back, to want me around. I had incentive to return in one piece, to not be killed out there trying to make things right for everyone. Every time I was off on a trip with the team without her for whatever reason? Every day I thought of her, how I wanted her around. Because I loved her, because I still do. That’s what you fail to realize, Polis. She means everything to me . . . more than the hero antics . . . more than my line of day work . . . and even more than the Senators do.”

    Polis stood frozen as Gark spilled his guts here. He couldn’t believe what he was hearing, but on the other hand, he instantly knew that Gark wasn’t lying. He had known the Bothan for a long time, and when Gark was serious, Polis could tell. Every word that came off Gark’s tongue, every syllable he uttered, was now in more serious context, was now true. For several seconds after Gark finished speaking, Polis stood there, silent. He had no idea what to say. What could he say? The Bothan was in terrible psychological pain here; what would happen if Meredith left him, Polis thought. How would he react?

    And then something came to him. Gark reached for the door to the bar. “I think it’s better this way,” Gark said. “She gets what she wants, and I’m back searching for answers to what I want in life. Either way, we both . . .”

    “No,” Polis blurted out.


    “No it’s not,” Polis said firmly. “I’ve known you a long time, and something I noticed was that you seemed happier with her around. It’s just something I think you should know. So you’re just going to let her walk off with another guy? Just give up? Is that what I’m seeing, the great Gark S’rily, the Limmie champion, the innovator, the relentless drive, give up? You’re walking away because you’re scared.”

    “Polis . . .”

    “You’re scared because you don’t know where to turn, where to run, where to hide your head in shame. Well, I oughta tell you something right here and now. You’re going to get her back. Whatever it takes, whatever the cost may be, you go and get her back.”

    “Really?” Gark asked. Polis nodded.

    "This should be easy for you,” he said. He held out his hand.

    Gark thought about it. Most of him wanted to retreat into the bar, to keep pouring alcohol down his throat and make everything go away. But maybe Polis was right. Maybe the cause wasn’t lost, at least not yet. He was Gark S’rily; he had gone through this before, and had succeeded. He could do this. Then, he shook Polis’ hand.

    “All right,” he said. “But I don’t know where to begin.”

    “I know it sounds cliché, but follow your heart. You know what to do,” Polis replied. “Now, if you’ll excuse me, I have some things to buy on the grocery list to take back to Meredith. You know, because life with her is a lot better than it was beforehand.”

    “All right,” Gark said, holding up his hand to get Polis to stop rubbing the point in. Here goes nothing he thought to himself as he walked away from the bar. Lord Daraza wasn’t going to make a fool out of Gark. Instead, the final joke would be made on him, and Gark was going to be there to administer it to him personally.
  20. jcgoble3

    jcgoble3 Jedi Grand Master star 5

    Nov 7, 2010
    This is really nicely written, but yeah, it just doesn't fit with the main storyline of Superbothan. I would have axed it too. Looking forward to the next post in the actual storyline! :D
    Jedi Gunny likes this.
  21. Jedi Gunny

    Jedi Gunny Yahtzee Host star 9 VIP - Game Host

    May 20, 2008
    And a Sunday two-fer!

    TAG: jcgoble3, Trieste

    Me’lin (she had dropped her wretched surname by this point) strode towards the upscale-club, wearing the same flowing black dress that she had worn on Trimfi and short heels. It was prime time for nightlife on Coruscant, and as a single woman once again she wanted to be a part of the social scene. Gark had never been one for this kind of life, but now that he obviously didn’t care for her, she was going to spite him any way she could. So she went to the club, hoping that something here could make her feel better. Maybe there would be another man here, someone who actually did want her around. They always said men hung around these kinds of places, real good-looking ones to boot.

    She entered the club, a very fancy place indeed. She had never been here before, but she didn’t let that stop her. The bar was her first stop, and she ordered a drink while looking around. This place was filled with well-dressed patrons, each one of them enjoying the nightlife. Me’lin knew that she would have to enjoy it as well, and moment by moment she knew that her sorrows were being drowned out by the atmosphere. Yes, she was single, and she was proud of it.

    The drink came, and she took a long sip at it. The liquid trickled down her throat, its sweetness giving her an interesting sensation that she liked. Again she took a drink, letting more of the stuff go into her throat. Yes, this was good stuff. She had a taste for sweet things, and this beverage certainly fit the bill.

    “Excuse me,” came a voice from nearby. Me’lin turned straight into the face of Lord Daraza, who was also at the bar, giving her an amused stare.

    “Um, hi,” Me’lin said, putting the glass down. “I didn’t know you were in town.”

    “Taking time off from the royal life,” Daraza said. “It’s good to get out every now and then. But if you don’t mind me asking, why are you alone tonight?”

    “Because I can be,” Me’lin said. She took another sip of her drink.

    “Oh come on, you can tell me,” the Prince said calmly.

    “I divorced my husband a few days ago,” Me’lin replied. “It was obvious that he was just jealous of you on our trip, and then he abused me by ignoring me ever since. I felt unwanted, so I left.”

    “You are a strong woman, doing something like that,” the Prince said. “I respect that. Not being afraid to stand up to someone who keeps beating you down. But, since he isn’t dragging you down anymore . . . can I ask something of you?”

    “Sure,” Me’lin said.

    “How would you like to return to Trimfi with me?” the prince asked. “I can offer you protection there in case he comes looking for revenge. Knowing someone like him, violence is the only thing he knows, and now that he might be peeved, he could be coming for your head. And I would hate for that awful fate to happen to someone as gorgeous as you.” He made sure to put a hand on her shoulder as he said this to add emphasis. “What do you say?”

    Me’lin finished her drink. “I accept,” she said. “But promise me that I can bring my son along.”

    “Of course,” the Prince replied. “I would be honored to have both of you as my guests. Lady Daraza may find it a little odd, but she will fully understand my actions when she hears that I’ve saved you from this predicament. However, one more thing. Would you like to dance again?”

    “I would love to,” Me’lin said. “Any place in mind?”

    “I hear that there’s a good dancing club not too far up the street,” the prince said. “I’ll take you there.”

    Sure enough, the two of them rode to the club and then danced the night away, both enjoying the others’ company. Me’lin felt oddly comfortable in the Prince’ s arms, and then put her head against his chest as they continued to dance. She could feel his heartbeat, feel the majestic touch of his body against hers. She had once had this feeling with Gark, but he had let her down. At least Allo was being respectful, and was a good friend. She couldn’t have asked for more from him.

    After their night on the town, Allo made sure to get a cab to the starport after Me’lin had picked Galin up from the babysitter’s place. When they got in the cab, Allo then spoke again. “I hope you don’t mind me saying this, but I enjoyed our evening together.”

    “Yes, I did as well,” the Twi’lek responded. She then felt him kiss her on the cheek lightly. However, instead of being revolted, this made her feel wanted. Allo may be married, she thought, but he did enough to make her feel like an important part of his life as well. This was all she had asked from Gark, and he failed to deliver, so Allo was the next best thing. She enjoyed being around him, and hoped that she would get a chance to when they reached Trimfi.


    When the prince and Me’lin approached the Daraza estate, Allo made sure to go and tell his wife first that Me’lin was going to be a long-term guest of the house. As Allo said, she was of course shocked by the news that Gark had been a bad apple, and welcomed Me’lin into the house. The Twi’lek was then given the same guest room that she had been in on her previous trip here, and then Allo left her alone for the majority of the day so that she could enjoy herself.

    During this time off, Me’lin ran in the fields, the sounds of freedom rushing into her ears and the wind whipping against her face as she ran around, not having a care in the galaxy. She then made a “grass angel”, spreading out her arms in the soft grass and just lying there, staring at the sky as the clouds slowly passed by on their gentle trajectories. She hadn’t felt this free in a long time, so it felt good to finally be out and about.

    At last, Allo came out to inform her that he had a question for her. He sat down next to her in the grass, decked out in a t-shirt and jeans like any normal person would be. “I had an idea,” he said. “An idea that would spite your former husband the most, and would break him completely.”

    Me’lin pondered this. She wanted Gark to feel the pain she felt, and Allo must know what he was doing. “All right,” she said. “What do you have in mind?”

    “Follow me,” Allo said. The two of them went inside to the work study, where Me’lin then sat down at the HoloNet terminal. “He is the owner of a large interplanetary corporation, isn’t he?”

    “CEO, but yes, he is,” Me’lin said. Even thinking of Gark made her want to strangle him. She could just imagine her fingers around his neck, choking him to death, making him gurgle and plead for his life as he knew his time was short. But she would keep on going until his feet quit kicking. He had betrayed her, and she wanted revenge.

    “You were a secretary for him?”

    “For the team, not for the company.”

    “But do you still have the power of deed, or at least access to it?”

    “I think so. Why?”

    “Just do as I say, and you’ll be a happy woman,” Allo said.

    Minutes later, the deed was done. Gark owned the majority stock in Andromeda, thereby making him the de facto owner of the operation. He owned 70% of the stock, which had been his and Bill’s when the former owner of the corporation and the Senators had been murdered years earlier by an unknown assassin. Me’lin, with her surname intact on the deed, made sure to break his hold on the company. She transferred all of his stock in her name into Allo’s stock portfolio, removing Gark from any kind of ownership in the company whatsoever. Then she saved the changes, and Gark’s future with Andromeda went down the drain.

    Allo kissed the Twi’lek lightly once again. “You’ve done a good job,” he said quietly.

    “He deserved it,” Me’lin then said.

    “Of course he did,” Allo said. “Of course he did. But now we have dinner. I would be honored if you would join us. Please make yourself at home in the dining hall. I will be there in a few minutes.” Me’lin left the room, and Allo was alone. He immediately picked up a comlink, and dialed it into his investing consultant. “Make sure S’rily gets dropped from the company’s board. I want him gone, and out of the company, you understand? Make sure they get the memo there that he is no longer welcome to work, even as a janitor, for them.”

    “Will do,” came the voice of his consultant/lackey. Allo hung up and then admired his handiwork. Thanks to Me’lin’s spite for Gark, he had just been handed majority ownership of Andromeda Steel and Droid Corp., which was a lucrative business potentially worth billions of credits. And it was his. The Limmie team that went along with it he could see; he didn’t care for the game, even though the people of Trimfi were warming to it, so selling it would add to his growing assets. Yes, Lord Daraza had some things going for him that even his parents didn’t know about. When he was king, and he knew that wasn’t too far off given his father’s frailties and poor health, he would be the best Trimfian king that ever existed, both in terms of power and wealth. Yes Trimfi was technically a democracy with a figurehead monarch, but perhaps things would change when he got to power.

    But this brought up additional complications. He then dialed in to the number of the butler. “I need you to do something for me tonight,” he said. When he was done with the instructions, the butler asked him if he was sure. “Yes,” Allo said. “Do it.”

    “Yes, my Lord,” the butler said before cutting the connection. Allo smiled. Things were looking up for him.

    Dinner was uneventful. Allo kept shooting looks at Me’lin as she dined with he and his wife, who didn’t seem to notice his glances. When dinner was over, Lady Daraza left the hall, but Allo did not. “Mind if I take you out dancing again?” he asked.

    “Not at all,” Me’lin said.

    The two of them went out to the same club where they had first me and danced, then returning to the estate near midnight. He escorted him to her room, where then he kissed her once more. “Can I ask you one more thing?” he asked quietly.

    “Go ahead,” Me’lin replied, her head on his chest.

    The next thing she felt was him kissing her, and she kissed him back. Then she let her guard down, and Allo moved in on her. They slept together that night; both of them knew that this would satisfy their desires.


    Gark sat in the executive office at Andromeda late at night, trying to wrap up company business before heading home. Polis had succeeded in getting him to want to go after Me’lin and make Lord Daraza pay, but first he needed to make sure that he could cover his absence here with the company. Therefore, he was working late to get everything done.

    Then the door to his office burst open, and four security guards stood there, each one of them having been Gark’s personal guards at some point or another during his tenure at the company.

    “That’s a rude entrance,” Gark commented.

    “Get out,” one guard, a Thaakwaash, said.

    “What do you mean?” Gark asked.

    “We said get out,” the Thaakwaash repeated in a gruff tone.

    “I don’t know what you’re talking about,” Gark said dismissively.

    “You’re no longer the executive of this company,” another guard said.

    “What?” Gark asked. He hadn’t heard this news. “What the hell are you talking about?”

    The next moment, he was grabbed roughly out of his seat and taken away from the desk by the guards. “You no longer have any stock in this company,” the head guard said.

    “What?” Gark asked again. “I have 70% stock . . .”

    “Not anymore. From the looks of it, you no longer own any shares of this company. And besides, our new boss told us to remove you at all costs, because you’re a disease to the company.”

    “New boss?” Gark asked. He definitely hadn’t heard about any of this.

    Then he was roughly taken out of the office and out to the front door, where he was almost punted out into the parking lot. “Get out of here, you scum,” the head guard shouted at him. “We never want to see you back here, understand? The boss specifically said for us to make sure you never get a job here, or even show up, ever again.”

    Gark stood up and dusted himself off. “Can I at least ask the name of this new employer who has apparently embezzled everything from me?”

    “Can’t do that. Privacy issues.”

    “You can’t even inform me of a buyout? That’s against all commerce rules,” Gark said. “I have to be informed before being kicked to the curb like this.”

    “All right, fine. The new boss is Daraza Holdings, Limited. Now get the hell out!” the head guard shouted. Gark furrowed his eyebrows; Daraza was behind this as well. All the more reason he had to bring that frakker down once and for all. First he had stolen his wife, and now he had taken his company. Gark turned his back to the office building, the rage inside him swelling. Daraza had made him mad before, but now he had really pissed Gark S’rily off. And no one did that and got away with it. No one.


    Here is your actual story for the day.

    Adding Admiral Volshe and epithree

    “The palace is secure, sir,” said the messenger.

    “Good,” said the main figure of this operation, a stocky man about 5’7 in stature. He wasn’t exactly large, brawny, or intimidating, but he had his brains. That was what set him apart from the rest; he didn’t need brute strength to win his battles. Many times rivals had tried to duel him with wits, and every time he had succeeded. Some called him “The Man of Many Tongues”, others “The Riddler, and even one called him “Larry”. Well, that one had been dispatched with all haste from the insult. “We are one step closer to our ultimate objective. Now, come.”

    As the man and the messenger walked down the hall, a few of his guards were escorting the royal family of Trimfi out of their throne room and towards the dungeon that they would soon call “home”. The coup leader, of the name Mortellus in actuality, watched with intense glee as the royals moved towards him. “Ah, I can see that you lot are looking rather dapper today,” he said in a mock cheerful voice.

    The king spat on the ground. “We will never submit,” he said simply.

    “Oh really?” Mortellus asked. “You don’t say things like that when you aren’t the one holding the big stick.” He then winked to get his point across before pulling out a stick of sufficient size. “And I happen to be the one of the two carrying said stick right now, I’m afraid.”

    “What do you want?” the king asked.

    “It’s none of your concern,” Mortellus replied. “All you need to know is that you and your family will be helpless to do anything about it, because you won’t even be here to see what I have in mind.”

    “You dare insult me!” the king said angrily. “I don’t know what you’re up to, but this is a democracy! The people will decide what to do with you!”

    “And who says I will give them that chance?” Mortellus asked, amused. “Take them away.” The royals were then moved along roughly, leaving Mortellus and his messenger alone once more.

    “Sir, why exactly are we here?” the messenger asked.

    “Because there is something here I need,” Mortellus said. “Fetch me my generals. I need to speak with them immediately.”


    Mortellus sat at the long dinner table in the royal palace, his closest generals and advisers with him. The leader of the coup started to munch on a piece of fruit that had been sitting in a bowl on the table, and then put his booted feet up on the table, crossing one leg with the other as he did so. “You are probably wondering why I summoned you here,” he said. “It’s quite simple. We are moving onto the second phase of the plan.”

    “What is the plan?” asked one general.

    “The coup has been a success,” Mortellus said. “We have ousted the Trimfian royal family, so we now have their power in our hands. The next issue to deal with is the Trimfian Senate. They still hold the majority of the power in this nation. I intend to break it with sheer determination and will. When all is said and done, we will be the next great dynastic power here on the planet. And with that comes the riches, but first we must complete this step.” He then looked to his generals. “I need you to clean out the Senate building of all resistance. I don’t care what methods will be necessary; I need the Senators, or representatives, or delegates, or whatever they call themselves here, to submit to my newfound power. And the only way to do that is through fear; we must make them fear us. The coup was successful in that we cleared the streets effectively. Now we need to take this one step further and make this nation cower in fear before us.”

    “Then what?”

    “Step three of the plan is to begin mining this planet for ore,” Mortellus said. “Trimfian ore is some of the finest in the Rim, and can be sold at high prices to many a military force on other worlds. We can make a fortune on this stuff, and if we control the population here, we can drive wages down without worry. If we play our cards right, we can have one of the most profitable operations around.”

    “And what if the Republic finds out what we’ve done here?” asked his senior adviser. “They may already know, and be sending a force to investigate.”

    “We must make sure that they cannot interfere,” Mortellus said. “But I highly doubt that they will. Trimfi is an out of the way planet; the Republic has more important things to attend to. I can assure we, we are quite safe from interference.”

    “How do we reach the ore? The mines here are unsatisfactory.”

    “We will have to build new ones,” Mortellus replied curtly. “There are large tracts of untapped ore near the city limits, and I intend to break that first. If we can start supplying ore from here, we will have mighty fine contracts that we can then pick up as we please. And when the ore here is exhausted, we move on. Trimfi is large enough that we can move our operation without running out.”

    “And what of reports that some mines have gone dry?”

    “Those are of no concern. I don’t care if we need to tear this city down. I want that ore, and I will get that ore. If a few citizens get hurt in the process, tough, that’s life.” He then got his feet down off the table. “I want digging crews out there as soon as possible. Once we have the populace under our thumb, we can proceed with the digging plans. I have some designs I would like to have implemented.”

    “Sir, what about the starport?”

    “Make sure to keep it closed down,” Mortellus replied. “I don’t want anyone being able to leave the city, especially those that can rat us out and rally support to their cause. Additionally, do not allow anyone to land and disembark without being searched and interrogated. We must complete this plan with all haste; I don’t want my plans to be foiled because we acted too slowly. Is that understood?” The others nodded. “By the end of the day, if all goes well, we will be the sole owners of this nation.”

    As Mortellus had desired, by the end of the day the Trimfian Senate had been raided and disbanded. The troops had used quite a bit of force to get their way, making sure to beat those who resisted, and injured others to prove their point. There had overall been very little resistance, which had been expected. The people of Trimfi weren’t exactly militaristic in nature, and when thugs with blasters had descended upon their seat of government, it had been a mismatch. A few guards against hundreds of goons didn’t end well. With the entirety of the Trimfi governmental system in his hands, Mortellus began to create plans for phase three. It was time to find that ore and exploit it.
    jcgoble3 likes this.
  22. Trieste

    Trieste Force Ghost star 5

    Apr 10, 2010
    "Prince Dorito" is probably my favorite part of these posts.
    Jedi Gunny and jcgoble3 like this.
  23. Jedi Gunny

    Jedi Gunny Yahtzee Host star 9 VIP - Game Host

    May 20, 2008
    Yes, I thought that was a hilarious bit myself when I was writing it. :p

    And here is the next piece of the deleted story. Post #3 of the actual story will be up tomorrow.

    TAGS: Trieste, jcgoble3

    It was early in the morning the next day when a worker rushed into the guest room. “Lord Daraza!” he shouted.

    “What?” Allo said, moving his head off the pillow to look at the man. Here he was, completely naked, in bed with Me’lin, who had also been awoke by the commotion. “This better be a good reason.”

    “It’s Lady Daraza. She’s missing!”

    “What?” Allo asked, sitting up. The sheets fell off his bare chest as he did so. “What do you mean ‘missing’?”

    “She went missing overnight,” the man replied quickly. “No one knows her whereabouts, and we are afraid that she might be dead.”

    “I will not stand for this!” Allo stated. “I will be there immediately!” The man left, and Allo looked over to the woman he had spent the night with. “I am sorry, but I need to attend to this matter.”

    Me’lin nodded, and Allo quickly dressed before hurrying out of the room. Me’lin then got out of bed and got dressed, not feeling violated this time like she had a few months before when she had slept with Ondal Nalcrissan. Allo was a nice man, and she wished she could spend more time with him. She then went over to check on Galin. The child had also been awoke by the messenger, but smiled when he saw his mother come over and give him attention. Me’lin kissed her son, and then hugged him close. Even though she hated Gark, she didn’t hate the fact that she had Galin as a result of their marriage. The tiny Bothan was her flesh and blood as well, and would therefore still be a part of her life.

    Two hours later, Me’lin found herself with the royal family as a messenger came in, followed by two others carrying a litter with a body on it. They lifted back the sheet to reveal Lady Daraza, dead. She didn’t have many cuts on her face, but there were plenty of small bruises here and there. “Whoever did this will pay,” Allo said, shaking his fist. “Whoever they are, I will not rest until they are found and captured. I will rip them apart myself!”

    “My Lord, we do not have any leads,” the messenger said.

    “Find them! I will not have this injustice happen unpunished!” Allo said firmly. He was about ready to lose his composure, but was strong-willed enough to not break up over this happening. Me’lin felt badly for him; he hadn’t been there with his wife to save her from this hideous fate, and she was part of the reason for that. Perhaps she shouldn’t be here, because her presence seemed to have only made things worse. Had he not been sleeping with her, maybe Lady Daraza would still be alive, and then Allo wouldn’t be so depressed.

    The king came over and consoled his son. The man was old and frail, but he did what he could nonetheless. “Your mother and I feel for your loss, son,” he said.

    “I understand, Father. And I will not let the murderers escape,” Allo said. He then turned around to face the messenger once again. “Form search parties, and then look in every nook and cranny for fugitives. I want every house checked, I want every small stream, forest, and grassy plain to be scoured in search of the killers.”

    “Allo, you cannot be allowed to do that,” his mother, the Queen, said sharply. “You cannot, under the laws of this land, violate the rights of the citizens of Trimfi by searching their houses and property without a warrant.”

    “Mother, I can’t let the murderers escape,” Allo said. “They must pay for what they have done here. I will not let guilty parties get away with such treason to the land!”

    “Allo, listen to reason. I cannot violate their sovereignty by . . .”

    “I will do what I want!” Allo shouted, shutting his mother up. “This is an outrage to my family, and it will not go unpunished! Form your search parties, and . . .”

    “Do no such thing,” the King bellowed. “Allo, your mother is right. Cease and desist immediately.”

    “All right, father. Forgive me,” Allo said, looking downcast. “I have erred. But I do not want the murderers to escape.”

    “Then form your search parties where the body was found,” the king said to the messenger. “Do not act upon any citizens unless we give you express permission to do so.”

    “Yes, your majesty,” the messenger replied, bowing before leaving.

    “It looks like we have a funeral to put together,” the Queen said. She then gave Allo a hug, who embraced his mother and began to cry a little.

    “I can’t believe she’s gone,” he said.

    “I know, son. She was a good woman for you, and we feel greatly saddened that you two cannot now rule over our kingdom when we have passed on.”

    “I will still be king someday,” Allo said. “I promise you I will not fail; this event will only make me stronger, make me more willing to lead the people of Trimfi. I will not let you down.”


    The funeral procession that night was long. Thousands of people lined the streets to mourn as the casket carrying Lady Daraza passed by on its carriage. Allo walked alongside it, his expression grave as he knew the consequences of what had just transpired that morning. The search parties had so far come up empty; they were trying as hard as they could, but nothing had appeared that they could link directly to the Lady’s death.

    Me’lin walked behind the carriage, trying to keep an eye on Allo as he walked far in front of her. She wanted to calm him down, make him understand that she felt his pain. She understood what he was going through; she had felt the same way once when Gark had “died” at the hands of Calo Mornd in the street. They hadn’t been married then, but she still felt his loss all the same when he had been killed. And now Allo felt the same way; she couldn’t stand to see him so depressed like this. She had to cheer him up somehow.

    The casket finally reached its resting place, and was dumped into the hole in the ground. Allo watched as the hole was filled in with dirt, his wife now every farther away from him. Me’lin came up to the Prince, who was on the verge of losing his composure.

    “I’m sorry to see this,” Me’lin said. “I know this isn’t going to help you feel better, but I’m here to help if you need someone to lean on.”

    “Thank you,” Allo said. He embraced her in a huge bear hug. “The saddest thing about this is that . . . we didn’t have an heir. She . . . she . . . was barren . . . so I don’t have a child of my own to raise and be loved by. We tried many a time to have one, but each time we came up empty. And now she’s gone, so I don’t even have a wife anymore.”

    “Is there anything I can do?” Me’lin asked.

    “Yes, I think there is,” Allo said, still sad about this turn of events. “I know the timing is off, but I need to ask you this now. Will you marry me?”

    Me’lin was shocked by this turn of events? Her, married to the Crown prince? Hm, that had a certain ring to it. She would be the new Lady Daraza; not bad. But then her mind wandered to his wife’s death earlier that day. He certainly had a quick turnaround here. Something felt off . . . but the more she looked at him, the more she knew that it would be the right thing to do.

    “Yes, I accept,” she said.

    “Thank you,” Allo said quietly. “You already have a child, so if we are to be married, then I have an heir. In case I die, then he will gain all rights to my kingdom, when it is mine. And I am terribly worried about my father. He is so weak these days; my mother fears that he could die in less than a year. So I need to have a queen, and that will be you.” He kissed the Twi’lek on the cheek. “I can’t thank you enough. This kingdom, and myself, is greatly endebted to you and your decision just now.”

    “Glad to be of help,” Me’lin said.

    “I will make sure that the plans are drawn up so that we may wed in the next few days,” Allo said. “And then you shall be introduced as my wife to one and all . . . and only then can I move on from the pain that I have dealt with today.” The two of them kissed again, knowing that they had a future together after all.
  24. Trieste

    Trieste Force Ghost star 5

    Apr 10, 2010
    Does Trimsi allow its royal heirs to play limmie? Because obviously Prince Galin the Magnificent could not be allowed to not be on the pitch. ;)
    Jedi Gunny likes this.
  25. jcgoble3

    jcgoble3 Jedi Grand Master star 5

    Nov 7, 2010
    Why do I suspect that the Prince ordered his wife killed himself? :p
    Trieste likes this.