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.

Beyond - Legends The Bluebells & The Edelweiss (AU, OC)

Discussion in 'Fan Fiction- Before, Saga, and Beyond' started by Trieste, Oct 4, 2010.

  1. Trieste

    Trieste Force Ghost star 5

    Apr 10, 2010

    Given the fact it was considering whether its membership in the Republic was beneficial, Tirahnn was not exactly at the top of the list for a campaign spot with days left before the general election for Supreme Chancellor. This was despite the fact that the recent upheavals on Tirahnn had not caused the cancellation of the Great Fair, one of the planet?s biggest economic events. With so many potential voters in one spot, it was tailor-made for an election event, but the negatives of potentially being booed (at best) on the Holonet outweighed any benefit.

    But, for whatever, reason, Kerry Trieste decided that there was a reason to go. Having just swung through Genet in conjunction with the Miners game there, Trieste was already on her way out to the independent systems for the final game of the regular season on Euceron. Tirahnn was not that far out of her way. It was without any announcement that Trieste landed on the planet and headed to the Great Fair to meet the voters?which was a pretty big assumption. After all, people on Tirahnn were not exactly inclined to be voting these days for anyone connected with an office on Coruscant.

    The stop was made over the strident objections of the Federal Marshals who were responsible for Kerry?s protection. Their prep time had been greatly curtailed, and the entire situation had so many danger points that it was ridiculous. All it took was one being who happened to have a blaster on him?something that would be very possible even at the Great Fair, which took its own security measures but they were far from foolproof. They only deterred the casual would-be criminal. A real assassin would waltz in without any problems at all with a dozen weapons strapped to him. Considering that Kerry Trieste had been shot at twice in her life?once as a child with her father and once as the actual target?and was still alive, the Marshals had a feeling that Kerry Trieste didn?t have any good luck left when it came to dodging blaster bolts. Granted, Trieste agreed it was a dangerous situation and agreed to several security measures that the Marshals could muster for such a high risk environment, but the Marshals didn?t want her there at all in the first place.

    When Kerry stepped out of her armored speeder, her arrival was not instantaneously noted. After all, who would think that Kerry Trieste would dare to set foot on Tirahnn after spending half a campaign calling for armed force if they chose to leave the Republic? But eventually someone believed it and soon there was a crowd outside the appliance pavilion, which was as far as Kerry had gotten before she?d been noted. Sitting on the counter of a model kitchen, Kerry shook hands with beings and answered questions?many of which were less than pleasant. Even so, Trieste handled them with poise and patience as members of the media began collecting to record the event.

    The press was richly rewarded for their prompt appearance, for Kerry Trieste had arrived at the Great Fair the same day that Tirahnn?s newly installed President Arkbautu had chosen to visit the Fair. The President and his personal guard pushed through the crowd with haste. This was not an opportunity to be missed.

    ?Madam Prime Minister, when I say this is a surprise, that is a great understatement,? Arkbautu said as he shook Trieste?s hand for the holocameras. It was an image that could potentially undermine Trieste?s strong arm position with Tirahnn, but she slid off the counter and allowed it to be captured anyways.

    ?It?s my understanding that none of my opponents have taken the time to visit Tirahnn during this election and their loss is my gain,? Kerry said.

    ?An odd argument for someone who advocates military action to prevent the will of the people from taking place,? the Quarren observed.

    ?I?m here because I think that the issues that face Tirahnn belong to many systems of the Republic,? Kerry replied, ?and it seems like the best place for me to discuss my solutions in detail.?

    ?So it?s a new twist on ?bombs or butter?, is it? Except we supp
  2. Vehn

    Vehn Jedi Master star 4

    Sep 14, 2009
    Ganath Cloud, Hutt Space

    Four frigates pierced through the highly radioactive nebula known as the Ganath Cloud with deadly purpose. Their many gun batteries, without adequate use of their tracking devices, were still capable of tearing apart the advancing squadrons of ugly fighters under the command of Hutt warlord Golgothra while suffering minimal damage in return.

    Leading this charge was the RTO flagship Rowena freshly repaired from the skirmish with Golgothra?s forces nearly a month earlier at this very location. Emerging out of the Ganath Cloud, the small task force discharged their fighters as a protective screen, quickly turning the tide of battle against the warlord and in the favor of the Roon Trade Organization.
    Beneath the task force laid the planet of Ganath, long obscured from the galaxy as a result of the Ganath Cloud, about to be raided by elite soldiers of the RTO navy in a bold move to capture or kill General Hal Rivera wanted for warcrimes by the RTO for his role in the Lannik conflict.

    Rear Admiral Horatio Quorro cursorily glanced through battle reports as the small action between the RTO navy and Golgothra intensified. His gut twisted a little bit as his mind wandered over the holographic map in front of him showing the tiny fleet deep within the borders of Hutt space violating the slugs? sovereignty.

    Quorro was afraid that the Hutt navy would think an invasion of their space was underway and that this small force was only a vanguard of things to come thus sending in their first rate warships to counter the threat. The young man from Naboo did not want a conflict with the Hutts, he simply wanted to fulfill his mandate and go home.

    ?Admiral, warships are entering the area from the location of Nal Hutta. They outnumber us three to one and are registering as vessels of the Hutt navy!? Whispered an alarmed junior officer.

    ?Prepare the fleet for the jump to lightspeed,? Quorro responded gritting his teeth never liking to admit defeat.

    A hologram about two feet in front of the command chair suddenly spurted to life revealing the gelatinous form of a senior Hutt official, anger written all over his wrinkly face.

    ?Commander of the RTO fleet, cease your attack on Ganath at once! You are in direct violation of the sovereignty of the Hutt species and this cannot be tolerated,? cried the old Hutt.

    ?To whom am I speaking?? Horatio asked in a bored tone while the attack continued.

    ?Dyrlak the Hutt, Admiral of the Hutt navy and representative of the legitimate government on Nal Hutta,? the Hutt replied.

    ?Well, Dyrlak, this is Rear Adniral Horatio Quorro of the RTO navy and pardon the intrusion into your territory but we are conducting business of the utmost importance to the Roon Trade Organization. Ganath is under the control of the warlord Golgothra, I assume you?ve heard of him??

    ?My government has heard of Golgothra and that is why we have come today in such force,? the Hutt responded in a firm tone.

    ?To destroy my fleet I presume,? Quorro retorted.

    The Hutt paused his bulbous eyes blinking in a mechanical manner. There must have been a lag time in the communication Quorro thought.

    ?On the contrary, Read Admiral Quorro,? Dyrlak responded with a bit of a grin. ?I am here to assist you.?

    ?And why would you do that??

    ?Mutual enemies, Admiral. Mutual enemies. Dyrlak out!?

    The hologram winked out of view and Rear Admiral Horatio Quorro was left feeling as if he had plunged into an icy pool on Hoth.

    ?Admiral, new vessels entering the area registering as forces aligned with Golgothra. We?ve got a big scrap now, Admiral,? a junior officer exclaimed with a little too much exuburence.

    ?The Hutt fleet is engaging Golgothra?s naval forces, Admiral, but they?re losing quite a number of ships. Shall we engage?? Asked another officer.

    Quorro could not believe what had transpired today. A truce with the Hutts to defeat a common enemy? Outrageous!

    ?Admiral, shall we engage??

    Horatio Quorro stared at the sensor reports and knew that his four frigates outgunned many of the ve
  3. Trieste

    Trieste Force Ghost star 5

    Apr 10, 2010
    Great Fair, Tirahnn

    A Federal Marshal had tackled Kerry Trieste half a second before the shot had been fired, her training kicking in. A second one had dogpiled on top to provide further protection. A third Marshal, roving in the crowd had spotted the distinctive pull of a blaster from inside a jacket and had done the same. It had been a tricky shot to make with so many civilians in close quarters, but the Marshals trained for just such a scenario. The assassin, a Chev, had been shot squarely through the head before he?d ever known if he?d hit his target.

    He had.

    Standard protocol would have been to immediately evacuate the Prime Minister from the pavilion, but with crowds running around and in an unfamiliar space they held position as they searched for a way out and made sure a second assassin was not present. This meant that Kerry Trieste remained pressed against the well-trod floor of the hall, looking at the smoking burn in President Arkbautu?s chest, his mouth under the tendrils gulping for the last breaths he would ever draw.

    ?Get off me!? Kerry demanded of the Marshals as she tried to wiggle out from under them. Persuading highly trained federal Marshals was a hard thing to do when they were trying to keep her alive. She wanted to crawl across the floor, provide some comfort to the dying Quarren, but found herself unable to do so. When the Marshals finally got off her, it was only to grab her with the intent of hurrying to safety. With a strength that she hadn?t exercised since her college Limmie days at UBSD, Kerry tried to shake them off to go to Arkbautu. However, in college Limmie she'd never faced a fully trained Marshal. Accordingly, her efforts were futile.

    ?No!? Kerry yelled as she was pulled away, ?No!?

    Kerry Trieste always traveled with media on her shuttle. Wherever she was, there were reporters who wanted to make sure they could get a story when it happened. They?d been there at the Great Fair when she?d engaged Arkbautu on his turf. They?d been there when he?d been shot. They had only barely made the shuttle, which had taken off from Tirahnn almost immediately after the Marshals muscled Kerry onboard, against her will. A heated argument had occurred about leaving Tirahnn with the Marshals eventually forcing the pilots to take off over the Prime Minister?s objections.

    In the privacy of her cabin, Kerry sat and reflected on what had happened. Confirmation had come shortly before they made hyperspace that Arkbautu was indeed dead. She?d wanted to hold the hand of the Quarren, but she just couldn?t get to him. The fact that it had taken two very strong Humans to prevent her from going to Arkbautu?s side gave her no comfort at all. Eventually, without even checking her appearance, Kerry went out of her cabin to where the media was gathered. She was immediately pummeled with questions. Kerry put up her hand wearily to try and get some silence with which to speak.

    ?As I?m sure you?ve all heard by now, President Arkbautu has been killed. I was there when it happened and obviously the event has had a great effect on me personally. Though sadly I am no stranger to this, it never stops hitting you hard,? Kerry said, ?Tirahnn should grieve tonight for their President, a man who clearly only had the best interests of his people at heart. In the short conversation we had, I felt the beginning of a much wider dialogue, one in which we could bridge the growing divide separating Tirahnn from the rest of the Republic. Though we held different positions when it came to issues facing Tirahnn, I knew instinctively that President Arkbautu wanted what was right for Tirahnn, not what was right for only certain interests. And now?? Kerry paused, as she needed to take a few breaths that were suddenly coming harder, ??and now we must hope that his successor will be committed to the same ideals. This is a sad day for Tirahnn and for the Republic.? Kerry wiped away a tear. ?But the people of Tirahnn need to do honor to the memory of President Arkbautu and stand for peace, stand for justice, stand for free
  4. Trieste

    Trieste Force Ghost star 5

    Apr 10, 2010
    Salis D?aar, Bakura

    It was at 11:34 in the morning, local time, that the Holonet announced the results of the general election for Chancellor. As was widely expected, Governor Mado took the top spot with 30% of the vote. As was not widely expected, Kerry Trieste finished second with 23% and sitting Chancellor Tancarda only 20%. The result meant that Mado and Trieste would face off head-to-head in the runoff election in which one was destined to achieve a majority of voters in the Republic. For the Governor, it was a big win to come in first. For Tancarda, it was a crushing blow to not even make the runoff as a sitting Chancellor. For Kerry Trieste, it was just fine with her to come in second.

    She had planned no rally, unlike Mado who was now addressing his supporters joyfully, speaking of the ringing endorsement the beings of the Republic had given to peaceful approaches to resolving the Outer Rim issues. Tancarda too had a rally, except one at which he regretfully admitted defeat. No, Kerry Trieste did not have a rally. She merely released a statement to the press from her desk at Marian Square saying, ?Today is not a victory, but only a step towards the future of a strong Republic committed to the joint prosperity of all of its citizens. We have no place for rallies today.?

    Curiously, as polling data would later indicate, Trieste had carried only 55% of the voters on Bakura. By contrast, the Corellian systems delivered 62% of their combined votes to Trieste. Several other Core worlds had strong Trieste showings, and all of them had prominent political figures who were good friends of Oren Mott. There was decent Outer Rim support for Trieste, which she had largely split with Mado, who rode the Inner Rim and Expansion Region hard. Who took the Colonies voters that had largely supported Tancarda would be hotly contested.

    However, the greatest surprise was when the results for Tirahnn were tabulated. Many voters cast protest votes for fringe candidates who supported Tirahnn secession. However, observers were shocked to learn that Kerry Trieste had garnered a full 30% of the vote on Tirahnn, the most of any major candidate. It was a statistic that was destined to be debated for a full news cycle.
  5. Trieste

    Trieste Force Ghost star 5

    Apr 10, 2010
    University of Corellia, Bella Vistal, Corellia

    Kerry Trieste was receiving last minute touches to hair and makeup before the beginning of her one and only debate with Governor Mado. This head-to-head debate was Kerry?s big chance to gain on Mado, who was currently leading her 52-48 in the polls now that the field had been winnowed down to two. Crucial to tonight?s debate would be their differing positions on dealing with the surly Rim worlds on the Republic?s borders?a topic that Kerry felt that she could win if she could keep the debate on that track.

    ?Prime Minister, forgive me, but I have an urgent call for you from your sister in-law, Verity,? one of Kerry?s aides said, breaking into Kerry?s pregame mental preparation.

    It was rare that Kerry heard much of anything out of Verity outside family gatherings. ?How urgent are we talking about? I have three minutes.?

    ?She says she has to speak to you now.?

    Kerry looked at a chrono. ?I will give her a minute and a half.?

    It was shortly thereafter that a small image of Verity appeared above a compact holoprojector that Kerry was brought. The proud woman was crying. ?Kerry?I??

    ?What is it?? she asked with concern, ?Is everything all right??

    ?No, it?s not,? Verity sobbed, ?They?somebody?somebody cut May.?

    ?What do you mean they cut her?? Kerry asked with alarm.

    ?Three times, with a vibroblade. On the face. They had to sedate her, she was in so much pain,? Verity said.

    ?Frak me,? Kerry said, not that softly, putting a hand to her temple, ?Verity, where is the family right now??

    ?Austin is with me, at the hospital. Oisin called private security, he wanted to avoid an official police report,? Verity said. Kerry silently agreed with her youngest brother?s decision. ?But Kerry, he?s gone.?

    ?Who?s gone??

    ?Oisin. He left. I haven?t seen him this angry in years. I think, I think he?s gone to find whoever did this and?and??

    ?Madam Prime Minister, on stage in one minute,? an aide said, cutting in.

    Kerry looked to the aide, hesitated, and then back to Verity. ?Verity, I have to go. I want you to stay with May, keep Austin close. Go nowhere without protection. We don?t know who is behind this, what they want, why they did this. I am sending someone to find Oisin. He?ll be back soon. I?m sorry, but I can?t talk longer.?

    The redhead didn?t have the luxury of waiting for a reply, so she simply terminated the connection and rose to head to the auditorium stage, aides in tow.

    ?Have someone get in contact with the Chairman?s office, discreetly,? Kerry said as they walked through the halls, surrounded by bodyguards, ?I imagine they may have already spoken with Verity but they need to be in the loop. It?s more likely this is a message meant for them. They?re also going to have the best shot at finding Oisin.?

    ?Madam Prime Minister, the coin toss was won by Governor Mado. He?s elected to go first for opening statements,? one of the aides jutted in.

    That was important and it dictated a certain approach to the debate. ?Thank you,? Kerry said. She turned back to the first aide. ?Find Oisin before he does something stupid.?

    With that they were at the curtain, a Selonian holding up a hand to prevent Kerry from entering early. Then, three seconds later, he waved her through and she entered the stage at the same moment as Governor Mado. The candidates met, shook hands, and took their places at their podiums.

    ?Prime Minister Trieste, Governor Mado, welcome,? the moderator said.

    ?It?s a pleasure to be here,? Kerry said with her brightest, most genuine smile.
  6. Trieste

    Trieste Force Ghost star 5

    Apr 10, 2010
    Tesserone, Roon

    The Vehn-Triestes were still at the hospital with the sedated and recovering May when Oisin Trieste stepped through the door. The country home was dark, as was to be expected. Even so, the sandy haired poet closed the door softly out of habit. It had a tendency to be a loud house with three generations in it, and it was a working house more than that. Farm hands coming in and out, mainly to ask questions of Joaquin Vehn who oversaw the operations of the farm. It was his retirement and accordingly it was his joy. Unlike so many farmers, the Vehns did not have to worry about finances?which was good because Tesserone?s crops couldn?t have sustained all five of them alone. But tonight it was silent, as if it knew what had occurred.

    Oisin?s shoes fell heavily on the wood floors of the estate as he crossed into the great den. The fact that a small fire was on the hearth told Oisin that he was not alone. ?Hello Dad,? he said. That was what he called his father in-law. Oisin?s own father had been Father, never Dad. Though Oisin had been born too late to remember his father as Prime Minister, unlike most of his other siblings, Fionn Trieste had always been an imposing, if loving, figure to his youngest child. ?I don?t suppose I need to explain where I?ve been.? Oisin didn?t look at Joaquin as he spoke, instead busying himself with pouring a more generous drink than usual.

    ?So he?s dead then,? Joaquin said without preamble.

    ?He is,? Oisin said before downing half the drink in one go, ?He was a pathetic, wretched man. I almost had a mind to leave him alive because of it.? Oisin removed his overcoat and carefully folded it up. ?But vengeance had the better of me.?

    He threw the coat into the fire where it began to smoke darkly.

    ?I know I was the quiet one, the mild mannered one. It was natural I should be a poet,? Oisin said as he removed his shirt, ?But you know what they say about still waters.?

    Joaquin assented that he did as the shirt was thrown to the fire.

    ?I?m still a Trieste. I have all the fury of my mother in battle, the intensity of my father in his convictions. I hold it close,? Oisin said as one by one each of his garments began to be incinerated. Halfway through he threw some more fuel on the fire to speed the process. ?I wanted him to die. I wanted him to suffer, disproportionally. They may never find him and they sure as frak won?t ever connect me to him, but I wanted the galaxy to know that you anger a Trieste at your own peril.?

    ?I think the galaxy already knew that,? Joaquin pointed out.

    ?No, they knew you don?t get on the wrong side of my sister,? Oisin said, ?that the Prime Minister isn?t a woman to be crossed. They knew that when Ronan Trieste decides he?s going to take over the Eden Banking Group, he does it. The galaxy knew that Fiona Westenra will whoop your navy into next week if you?re stupid enough to fly straight at her. All the galaxy knew of me was that I was a poet, a third son and a seventh child.? Oisin put on a dressing gown before pouring another drink. ?Now they know that he defends his own.?

    Joaquin sat silently as he pondered his own drink. ?I suppose it goes without saying???

    ?Of course,? Oisin said.

    ?Verity is no dainty flower. She is a strong woman. She would appreciate what you have done today. I know my daughter,? Joaquin said, ?She would be pleased that satisfaction has been given.?

    ?Perhaps,? Oisin said as he took a seat by the fire, ?but I would rather carry this burden alone.?

    Joaquin stood from his chair and walked by Oisin, whose eyes remained on the fire. The old man patted his son in-law on the shoulder. ?You may be a Trieste, but you?re more a Vehn than you know, son.? With that, he left Oisin Trieste to his solitude.
  7. Vehn

    Vehn Jedi Master star 4

    Sep 14, 2009
    Nime, Roon

    Lady Constance, as the hospital conglomerate had been known for quite some time since its foundation by Verity Vehn-Trieste years ago, had grown into quite the metropolitan hospital with all of the modern amenities, medicines, and available practices. But modern amenities came with a choice for the patient, a choice that involved the equally potent yet still uncharted field of alternative medicine. It was in this area that the youngest of the Vehn clan to be born from
    Joaquin Vehn and his wife Rowena had made her mark on the Outer Rim.

    Tonight, that mark on the Outer Rim would be forever tested by the landing of a military shuttle straight from the conflict on Ganath. Pouring off the landing ramp flanked by an armed escort of the RTO army was a hoverbed carrying the badly wounded form of a man found on that miserable world.

    Normally, Verity would not have felt the urge to investigate another traumatic case entering the emergency room of Lady Constance Hospital, however, this was a situation she could not avoid as she had been personally requested to attend to this man by her older brother. In a way, Verity was glad to be back in the operating room after scrounging behind a desk for far too long looking for additional ways to make her pet project thrive. Just the idea of helping save someone?s life put a thrill in her very being. She was back where she always wanted to be and her younger colleagues just entering their medical training showed a deference and respect to this woman who had helped to catalyze a new medical approach in the Outer Rim as she suited up for the operation.

    ?Status of the patient?? Verity asked as she examined the man before her, gently probing certain spots of his body with her gloved fingers.

    ?Third degree burns over 30% of his body. Looks like exposure to a chemical fire,? a nurse replied.

    ?We found him on the surface underneath some rubble near a munitions plant, the scum,? comment an officer who had led the escort off the military shuttle.

    ?You have something constructive to say, say it, otherwise, leave my ER!? Verity shot back, giving the officer an icy stare.

    ?Do you know who the man is that you are working on, Doctor?? The officer replied.

    ?That?s not important right now. The important thing is saving this man?s life.?

    ?Saving his life? Why? He?s not worth saving, the butcher,? the soldier responded, disgusted.

    ?A life, no matter how poorly led, soldier, is still a life, now get out of my ER!? Verity shouted, startling the aides around her.

    The soldier realized that he was going to lose this battle and took his men in tow out of the operating room.

    ?Alright, quit your staring, let?s focus on helping him make it through tonight,? Verity said as she struggled to bring her team?s attention back on the man in front of them.


    Six hours later, Verity Vehn emerged from the operating room utterly exhausted.

    ?Is he alive?? asked the officer rising from his seat in the hallway.

    ?Yeah, he?s alive,? Verity responded in a weary tone.

    ?Should have let him die, Doc. No point keeping a man like that alive,? the soldier said.

    Verity?s back stiffened. This guy was really getting on her nerves now.

    ?And what could this man possibly do that would make me not want to keep him alive?? Verity questioned.

    ?Ever heard of Hal Rivera??

    ?The Lannik Massacre,? Verity exhaled.

    ?So you do read the news,? the soldier replied with extra bite.

    ?What someone does with their life is entirely their choice. As a doctor, I cannot stand by and watch someone that I can save die before my very eyes. Besides, at least I can wake up every morning and look myself in the mirror and love what I do and who I am. Can you, soldier?? Verity shot back, shaking her head in disgust as she marched down the hall of Lady Constance.

    Stepping outside of the hospital, Verity closed her eyes and fought back the tears. It had been a very stressful week for her. May, her youngest daughter, had been cut up pretty badly and was now being tended to by her father, Joaquin, and husband, Oisin. It had rat
  8. Vehn

    Vehn Jedi Master star 4

    Sep 14, 2009
    Nar Shaddaa

    The towering skyscrapers of the Vertical City rose up like the jaws of a great predator as the diplomatic shuttle carrying top delegates from Nal Hutta weaved its way through the urban maw of durasteel and vehicular traffic on its final approach to an undisclosed location, escorted by two snubfighters of Hutt origin.

    Wind whipped around the exposed landing pad at the top of one of the skyscrapers as Liam Vehn, along with an armed escort consisting of veterans from the Lannik conflict, watched in quiet contemplation as the diplomatic shuttle extended its landing gear and settled down onto the pad without much fanfare, disgorging its large occupants.

    Emerging from the shadow of the shuttle craft, escorted by an honor guard of various beings, was a bulbous looking Hutt with dreadlocks for a beard. Slithering his way forward, the effort almost seeming to strain the old Hutt, the creature drew forth and stared at Liam.

    And Liam stared back.

    Nobody moved as both beings examined one another. The energy between the two beings grew in intensity as centuries of conflict between the Hutts and the outside galaxy spun through their respective minds.

    Finally, Liam spoke. ?Admiral Dyrlak, it brings me great satisfaction to receive you on behalf of the Roon Trade Organization. It is my sincerest hope that what we accomplish today will last for generations to come.?

    The Hutt blinked and then responded. ?I too share the same hope, Liam Vehn. Together, I am positive we can achieve a great deal.?

    The pair proceeded to walk inside where they were ushered into a conference room. The doors closed behind the pair leaving

    Liam and Admiral Dyrlak to sit in silence, across from one another, a sizeable datapad of the formal variety resting between them. A serving of food appropriate to Hutts and humans was resting nearby as well a wide assortment of bootleg liquors, courtesy of Nal Hutta.

    Dyrlak glanced at the curved ceiling to floor windows and examined the bustling traffic of Nar Shaddaa. His eyes seemed to be searching for words, for the right feeling, for the best way to express his thoughts and fears.

    ?It has been a long time since I visited Nar Shaddaa, a long time. Back then, this moon belonged to Nal Hutta. A moon that reeked of garbage, of unparalled criminal activity, and of an old familiarity bred of the Hutt clans,? Dyrlak said.

    ?To be honest, Admiral, the moon has not changed that much since the Hutts were,? Liam paused. Were what? Kicked off the planet? Forcibly removed? Nar Shaddaa had been under the control of the Hutts for several decades before the rise of various governments in the south eastern galaxy that voted to remove the Hutts from the Vertical City. After the collapse of the Commonwealth, Nar Shaddaa returned to Hutt jurisdiction but was so poorly managed that they ultimately succumbed to the temptations of a wealthier neighbor willing to purchase the Vertical City. The Hutts have never turned down a chance to gather a fortune, however disadvantageous.

    ?Pushed out of Nar Shaddaa in what became known on Nal Hutta as the Great Hutt Migration,? Dyrlak remarked.

    ?Yes,? Liam responded sheepishly. ?But that was a long time ago.?

    ?Our people have long memories, Liam. Very long memories,? Dyrlak responded as he helped himself to a Hutt dish.

    ?What is it you want, Admiral??

    ?I was sent here to negotiate a treaty that would make Nal Hutta a trade partner, and potential ally, of the Roon Trade Organization,? Dyrlak announced.

    ?You do realize what this means??

    ?It means peace, Liam. Peace and prosperity. Nal Hutta has realized that it cannot continue an economic war with the RTO without seriously jeopardizing our standing in the galactic community. Too many lives have already been lost and we both know which side has the military advantage should we continue to disagree,? Dyrlak admitted.

    Yeah and we kicked your rears several times didn?t we? Liam thought as he contemplated this proposal. Had it been made from any other political entity, Vehn would?ve tossed it out the window.
  9. Trieste

    Trieste Force Ghost star 5

    Apr 10, 2010
    State Apartments, Marian Square, Salis D?aar, Bakura

    ?Mom, they could be releasing the election results any second now,? Declan Trieste said, ?Why are you insisting on making lunch??

    ?Because I feel like it and the cook deserves a day off,? Kerry said as she laid out sandwiches. She would be the first to admit that she had never taken the time to learn how to cook properly (though she probably wouldn?t have had much to learn from her mother, whose idea of cooking was influenced by feeding large numbers of space pirates all at once often on less than ideal supplies and, consequently, often put greater emphasis on nutrition than taste), but she still attempted it from time to time. It had been her husband who had known how to cook, who had seen to all of that. Kerry sighed when she thought about it. ?Besides, it?s not like I can change anything. I?ve been running around for months now. This is relaxing.?

    ?Regular families go on vacation to relax,? Declan complained.

    ?Since when was this a regular family?? Kerry asked, putting a sandwich down in front of her son.

    ?So if you win, we?re moving to Coruscant?? Falene asked.

    ?We will,? Kerry said, ?I?m sorry to have to do this to you both, but I?m not going to Coruscant without you. Besides, there?s plenty of fun stuff to do there and it won?t be for long. You?ll be in university in a couple years Declan, and you?ll be starting high school this year anyways Falene, so you?d be making new friends anyways. Besides, we?ll come back for Miner games during the season. We?ll make real weekends of it too.?

    ?And what happens when the galaxy needs saving?? Declan asked dourly, ?You?ll have to do that, won?t you??

    ?In case you didn?t watch the vids, the Chancellor always sits around and does nothing while the daring Jedi saves the day,? Kerry said, ?I think that you?ll find life to be a little better if I??

    A gentle ping, heralding the arrival of a visitor, interrupted the Prime Minister. It was Kirk Equus, Attorney General, once Kerry?s rival, now her closest and longest-serving advisor. ?Madam Prime Minister,? Equus said, ?Forgive the offense, but I hoped that you would allow me the pleasure.?

    ?What pleasure would that be?? Kerry asked.

    ?Of calling you by an inferior title,? Equus said, ?Madam Chancellor-Elect.?

    Kerry paused and found that she had to sit down. Falene turned on the Holonet. ??has, once again, released the official vote tally. With 52.3% of the vote, Kerry Wyvern Trieste has been elected the seventh Supreme Chancellor of the Galactic Republic.?

    Without knowing why, Kerry Trieste began to cry as she hugged her children.
  10. Trieste

    Trieste Force Ghost star 5

    Apr 10, 2010
    Bakuran Senate Building, Salis D?aar, Bakura

    ??and I believe that we have brought the Fleet budget under control, as evidenced by federal cash reserves grown in the last five years,? Kerry Trieste said, addressing the full 80 member Senate, ?At the same time, unarguably, Bakura is well positioned for defense against any threat that we may face from the Unknown Regions. It is why the Fleet exist and our brave servicemen and women are, as ever, to be applauded for their commitment to their fellow Bakurans.?

    The redhead paused. ?If the Senate will indulge me for a few minutes, this is, as you all know, my last Prime Minister?s Questions session as tomorrow I will resign my duties as Prime Minister, which shall devolve upon Deputy Prime Minister Dormingale, who has ably led this body for the last eleven years. Though some in the media have disparaged her as a Nabooan court intriguer, I have the utmost faith that the Deputy Prime Minister, one of the first resettlers of this planet, is well-equipped to lead this planet from Marian Square.

    ?I would also like to thank, publicly and on the record, two of my Cabinet ministers who have been with me for the entirety of my fifteen years in office. Attorney General Kirk Equus has been one of the wisest voices of counsel ever since his appointment. His unfailing sense of morality guided this planet through some of its darkest days and provided me with the clarity to be just and equitable. Minister of the Exchequer Orn Captison has also been with me for this entire journey. His shaping of this planet?s finance laws single handedly saved this economy. For this, we owe Minister Captison a great debt. Personally, his calm determination, no matter the situation, was an inspiration.

    ?Senators, it has been a privilege to consult with you as representatives of the people for the last fifteen years. You have challenged me, supported me, called me out, and been truly deserving of the trust the people of Bakura have placed in you. It is my intention to do you proud and that the Galactic Senate may be as noble and great as the one that sits before me today. Thank you, and Maker bless.?

    The standing ovation for Kerry Trieste from the Bakuran Senate was immediate and loud, both on the floor and in the gallery. Her first elected position had been as a Senator. Now she was to become the first Bakuran to lead any galactic government, the first Human to lead this Republic. She was their favorite daughter today and she humbly accepted their applause.

    It was with some effort that Deputy Prime Minister Dormingale called the chamber to order once more. ?If the Prime Minister will indulge the Senate slightly longer, we have one item of business to transact today. The chair recognizes Senator Brambledon of Salis D?aar.?

    ?Thank you, Madam Deputy Prime Minister,? the Senator so indicated said, rising, ?I wish to introduce SB 628, entitled ?Appropriation for the Construction of a National Monument Honoring Prime Minister Fionn Dunross Trieste?.?

    The announcement caught Kerry by surprise. A monument to her father?

    ?Thank you, Senator,? Dormingale said crisply without hesitation, ?The Chair sees no reason to route SB 628 to committee and wishes to proceed with a voice vote at this time. All in favor??

    The Senate stood in a chorus of ayes.

    ??all opposed??

    There were none.

    ??SB 628 passes,? Dormingale said, never breaking stride, ?Will the secretary please present the Prime Minister with the bill for signature??

    It was clear from the efficiency with which the bill was produced that this had been planned in advance. Kerry, with slightly trembling hand and tears in her eye, signed the bill, which she knew was the way that the Senate, and especially her party chose to give her a farewell gift for so many years of service.

    As Kerry set her pen down, the Senate erupted into applause and cheers again. Dormingale descended from her spot at the dais to embrace Trieste.

    ?I hope Marian Square for a year is enough thanks for so much service to the Noble House,? Kerry said
  11. Trieste

    Trieste Force Ghost star 5

    Apr 10, 2010
    Outside the Bakuran Senate Building, Salis D?aar, Bakura

    ??will faithfully execute and uphold the Office of the Prime Minister of Bakura and to preserve, protect, and defend the Constitution of Bakura.?

    With those words, Sabé Dormingale, the former princess of Keren of Naboo, ten term Senator of Cape Suzette, Deputy Prime Minister for ten years, became the Prime Minister of Bakura. At her side stood her granddaughter, Ayn Dormingale. The Dormingales had not made it a point to bear children in wedlock since coming to Bakura, nor had they seemed overly concerned about bearing sons. The chocolate haired girl, now seventeen, stood tall next to her grandmother, sharing in the moment of triumph.

    Kerry Trieste, now an ordinary citizen, applauded with her fellow Bakurans.

    Outside the Senate Building, Coruscant
    One week later

    The inauguration of the Supreme Chancellor traditionally took place inside of the Senate Building. However, this Chancellor had decreed that it would take place outside. ?The inauguration belongs to the people. They cannot share it inside.? And so it was that millions of Republicans crammed the plazas outside of the Senate Building, waiting for the appearance of Kerry Trieste to take the oath of office. The plaza fell quiet when the [link=]first strains of the Chancellor?s March filled the air[/link].

    [See 2:54 through 4:40.]

    The doors of the Senate opened and Kerry Trieste, alone, stepped from between them and began the long walk down the steps towards the dais where the oath of office would take place. At first, as Trieste?s image appeared on vidscreens set up throughout the plaza, there were cheers, but then they died down. This was no triumphant victor celebrating a victory. It was a being who seemed to carry responsibility on her shoulders, who felt the weight of the Republic. Even so, she walked with upright bearing. It was not fast, it was not slow. It suited a Supreme Chancellor. She walked past rows of Senators, ministers, officials, diplomats, all of which had turned to stand and face her. The first few applauded, but somehow applause fell short of the moment and they just simply stood and watched as she walked by, head straight, looking at the citizens of the Republic.

    Her two children were already in the front row, waiting for her. She paused to embrace them each before she stepped up to take the oath of office.

    ?I, Kerry Wyvern Trieste, do solemnly swear as Supreme Chancellor of the Galactic Republic to advance and protect the Republic and all its citizens,? she said. It was simple and to the point, but it made her perhaps the most powerful being in the galaxy.

    She turned to the crowds and now, for the first time, she smiled. That was when the crowds felt right to truly cheer this time.

    In her inaugural address, Trieste would speak of the need for the Republic to serve all citizens, from the Deep Core to the Outer Rim. Though it was a good speech, somehow it didn?t seem all that important. What seemed more important was the redhead who was full of life. Just as she had been on Bakura, she seemed a breath of fresh air for the galaxy.
  12. Trieste

    Trieste Force Ghost star 5

    Apr 10, 2010
    Chancellor?s office, Senate Building, Coruscant

    Kerry Trieste had wasted no time redecorating. Gone were the dark red walls, replaced by a soothing cream reminiscent of the West office. The black carpet had been replaced with a dark blue. The heavy furniture had been moved out and light, simplistic replacements had taken their place in the form of nerf leather couches and glass tables. It was a fresh look and the office already seemed less gloomy than when Kerry Trieste had entered it. And, in deference to responsible fiscal policy, the Chancellor had written a check to the Republican Treasury to defer the costs of the renovation, both in terms of supplies and labor.

    Her calendar was as full as could be. Every Senator wanted face time with the new Chancellor so their issues might receive priority consideration. The Chancellery had been strengthened with veto power in this iteration of the Republic and so the Chancellor was a good person to have on your side. Kerry knew this would be the case and had tried to make the rounds with some of the more important Senators prior to her inauguration, in addition to the many functions that had been expected of a Chancellor-elect.

    ?The entire Outer Rim hopes that your inaugural promises of Outer Rim development were made truly,? Senator Gleefork of Anoat said.

    ?Senator, I do not make promises I don?t intend to keep,? Kerry said graciously, ?Let me assure you that I have my top staffers working on a bill for introduction in the Senate, one that I hope you will support at the proper time.?

    ?Depending on the particulars, of course,? the Senator said.

    ?Of course,? Kerry said with her constant smile, ?Thank you very much for taking the time to visit. I look forward to a close working relationship with you and your colleagues.?

    ?Thank you, Supreme Chancellor,? the Senator said, shaking her hand.

    ?Chancellor will be more than adequate,? Kerry said, as she had to almost everyone who had addressed her in the last week.

    The Senator departed and Kerry looked at her schedule. This was one of her few breaks from receiving politicians and dignitaries. This block of time was reserved for a brief meeting with her Chief of Staff to discuss the appointment of Siona as Republican Ambassador to the RTO. It should be a slam dunk appointment. The nepotism might bother a few Senators, but this was still the honeymoon period. Besides, Siona was one of the most experienced diplomats in the galaxy when it came to the RTO and?

    ?Chancellor, I have Oren Mott via Holonet for you. Would you like to take the call?? her secretary buzzed.

    Kerry hesitated for a moment, then made a decision. ?Put him through.? Corellia?s votes?and Mott?s influence?had not been inconsequential in the election. She remembered favors, even if they came from somewhat unseemly sources.

    ?Chancellor, I believe I am overdue in wishing you the appropriate congratulations,? Mott said as his image flickered to life in the holoprojector.

    ?Considering half the Senate is still in line to give theirs, I?d say you?re about on time,? Kerry said, taking a seat on one of her couches, ?but I doubt this is solely a social call, is it??

    ?I wanted to discuss our arrangement with you,? Mott said, ?The Rim Senators will likely be understandably emboldened by your election, think they run the place. They might get a little?aggressive in their house cleaning, especially as it pertains to Core politics.?

    ?Our agreement stands,? Kerry reaffirmed, ?I won?t let the Senate push me around, Mr. Mott.?

    ?No doubt, but they might clamor for a Minister of Justice who is?shall we say, predisposed to look into the affairs of some of my colleagues? It would be much better if you were to introduce someone preemptively that they could support.?

    ?Someone who would be agreeable to our arrangement, but not look like it,? Kerry said, understanding perfectly, ?This makes me less than easy.?

    ?All I want you to do is meet with someone I?d like on your short list,? Mott said, ?Ask her anything you want and if you don?t like
  13. Trieste

    Trieste Force Ghost star 5

    Apr 10, 2010
    Six Boroughs Stadium, Nar Shaddaa

    ?Oh for frak?s sake,? Kerry Trieste said in disgust

    It was unbecoming of a Supreme Chancellor, but she had gotten past caring 10 points ago?all of them Smuggler points. What had started off as the usual, cordial visit to Nar Shaddaa, this time an official visit from a Supreme Chancellor with the Chairman, had quickly devolved into a mess of a Limmie game that had put Kerry Trieste into the foulest of moods. She did not like to see her team get beat like this. Though Liam Vehn was his usual gracious self, Kerry was having none of it. She was having his whiskey though. If she had her way he wasn?t going to have any left to put in the Old Whiskey Trophy.

    ?Absolutely pathetic,? Kerry continued as she waved to a droid for another drink.

    ?Perhaps this would be a good moment to turn to business matters?? Siona Lynd, the newly confirmed Republican Ambassador to the RTO, suggested tactfully. She was attending mainly in her official capacity today. The biggest item on the docket was evident to all parties.

    ?Liam,? Kerry said, dispensing with all titles, ?Let?s be frank with each other and just get all the cards on the table here, shall we? Reducing trade barriers is good for the RTO, and good for the Republic. Not everyone is going to agree on that, but we do. What I?m going to admit is that this is more important for the RTO than it is for us. That doesn?t mean the Republic doesn?t have a lot to gain from such a deal. Oh no.? Kerry paused to take a good pull. ?Our interest isn?t monetary. It?s about influence and credibility in the Outer Rim. You?ve got a lot more credibility out there than we have. And let?s face it, my family owes your family a great debt, which means that I owe you a great debt.

    ?But you?re not making this easy for me, Liam,? Kerry said, putting her drink down, ?I?ve been told that you?re making deals with Hutts now? There are rumors you?re bringing them into the RTO?? Siona started to say something but Kerry silenced her with a hand, not even looking at her sister. ?Frankly, I?m not sure it even matters if it?s true. How do you think the Senate?s going to react to this? This isn?t Bakura, Liam. I don?t have Dormingale in the palm of my hand telling them how to vote. There aren?t even parties in the damn thing! They are a diverse group of self-interested, me-first politicians that can?t see the bigger picture. They can?t see why it?s important for the Republic to have influence in the Outer Rim?they only care about the credits and they definitely don?t want to wake up to find out they just got into bed with Hutts.

    ?So Liam, help me help you and Maker help us all because it?s taken me six years of careful planning to get the Chancellery and part of it was so I could make this deal happen and now your problem with the Hutts is becoming my problem and when something becomes my problem these days it is not a good thing.?

    Kerry finally stopped to breathe.
  14. Vehn

    Vehn Jedi Master star 4

    Sep 14, 2009
    Six Boroughs Stadium, Nar Shaddaa

    Victory against the Bakura Miners had never felt more sweet, unfortunately, those feelings turned to anxiety and stress when Kerry Trieste had posed a very serious question about a recent treaty between the Hutts and the RTO, a treaty that could throw everything both galactic governments had worked for into a terrible quagmire.

    ?I understand and appreciate your concerns, Kerry.? Liam began, ?but there is no possibility of the Hutts becoming an ally of the Roon Trade Organization. I will not allow those slugs the benefit. I will, however, bring up the fact that a trade deal with the Hutts is simply smart politics out in this region of the galaxy. They benefit from a select list of goods we export and we benefit from a lasting peace. I lost too many good citizens on Lannik to not pursue a diplomatic avenue with our most hostile and dangerous foe. Believe it or not, I?ve got people to report back to as well and they?re not happy with the constant skirmishes and battles that take place between the Hutts and the RTO. Wars are expensive. They are a drain on the little surplus we have to operate with and I am not about to pander to the hawks and submit to the military-industrial complex.?

    ?I cannot deny the large scale benefits a trade agreement with the Republic would have for our organization. Finally, we could be considered legitimate in the eyes of our peers. My actions may have seemed to go in the face of reason, especially yours, but you must trust me that I am following the old maxim: Keep your friends close and your enemies closer.?

    ?Together we can achieve a great many things. But that cannot be possible unless I attempt to build bridges where traditionally they have been burnt down. This is our time, Kerry, our time to make the galaxy a better place. You know as well as I do that the independent systems beyond our two governments house dangers that could throw everything into a thousand pieces. We must be prepared,? Liam said as he stood and looked Kerry in the eyes.

    ?I appreciate your visit, Kerry, and I ask that you do what you feel is right.?
  15. Trieste

    Trieste Force Ghost star 5

    Apr 10, 2010
    After a very, very long break, The Bluebells & The Edelweiss returns!

    It was perhaps an ironic twist that the last two years had been quiet ones for the Noble House of Trieste. Ever since Kerry Trieste had been inaugurated as Chancellor, things had settled down. Maybe it was just because the galaxy was finally behaving itself for a change. Maybe it was luck. Or maybe it was because, for once, everyone had what they?d wanted for so long?

    Tesserone, Roon


    Oisin Trieste sat on the wide veranda of the Vehn family estate of Tesserone. Of all the Triestes, he had certainly gone the furthest afield. Perhaps not geographically all told, but certainly in terms of the life he?d chosen. Bakura was where he was born, but his home was now Roon. In reality, it was wherever Verity Vehn was, and she chose to be on Roon. Oisin was happy to make it his as well.

    He sipped some caf in the morning as he watched twelve year old Austin in the distance as he climbed a tree. That one had everything that Oisin did not, a physical masculinity that had simply never motivated the youngest Trieste son. Oisin was glad of it. Roon was the sort of planet that needed men. More than that, the Vehn family needed men. They had all too few. They were not a great family like the Triestes had grown into, but they had always been guided by men. Women had been their bedrock, but men had done great things.

    And yet his eldest daughter was on Naboo at this very moment, doubtless being groomed for great things. It was a planet that yearned for a monarch and with no issue of her uncle and aunt?s marriage, it had been determined that Eleanor Vehn was Naboo?s best hope to return to such days. The absence of his first born tugged at Oisin?s breast sometimes, but if he?d learned one thing, it was that the Vehns were a people who made sacrifices. The Triestes were not. In this he had learned to accept what it meant to be married to a Vehn.

    But, at the end of it all, the flower of his eye was his youngest, and the only of his children who had kept his name. May Trieste was still half Vehn and she?d felt her own amount of pain. The scars on her face, the origin of which was never talked about in the family even though they all knew what had happened, were testament to that. May had much of her mother in her?and yet she was definitely not a Vehn. Perhaps names were just names, but for a poet like Oisin, he wondered if names weren?t as important as he sometimes thought that they were. Perhaps it was right that this child of his was a Trieste. She had something in her that was most certainly not Vehn?

    Oisin sipped his caf.

    Eden Tower, Denon


    ?The Eden Banking Group is terminating its investment in the Hapan Expeditionary Mining Company,? Ronan Trieste said, now that he?d had his tea.

    ?You cannot do this,? the very good looking envoy from HEM Co. said, not bothering to hide her anger, ?We received guarantees of Eden?s support for this project. Promises were made that were predicated upon Eden?s interest.?

    Ronan reflected that it seemed every Hapan woman he met was good looking. Good genes certainly had something to do with it, he was sure, but he did have to wonder what they did with the ugly ones. Slave labor somewhere in the Consortium? He wouldn?t put it past them. Hapan women were like sand panthers.

    Perhaps this would have gone better if Ronan had brought in one of their female executives to deliver the news to HEM Co. After all, Hapans didn?t take to hearing much of anything from males. Even so, Ronan Trieste did his own dirty work because that?s how he had become Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of the Eden Banking Group, one of the largest capital conglomerates in the galaxy. He also enjoyed it when he got to make Hapan women unhappy. One had to enjoy the simple pleasures in life.

    Bakuran Supreme Court Building, Salis D?aar, Bakura

  16. Vehn

    Vehn Jedi Master star 4

    Sep 14, 2009
    Tesserone, Roon

    Two years had passed since Liam Vehn had stepped foot on the threshold of his family?s estate known as Tesserone.

    Staring at the familiar staircase where he had played as a youth brought back many memories of happy times and also a twinge of sadness in knowing that it was near that very spot at the foot of the stairs that his mother had been the victim of a bombing.

    But the Vehns had rallied around the memory of their matriarch and hunted down those responsible for the attack sending a clear message to the galaxy that to attack a Vehn was to attack the family as a whole. Justice had been served but no amount of revenge could ever bring back Rowena Vehn, mother of Verity Vehn and Liam Vehn, to the world of the living. The beautiful wife and mother buried out back in one of the nicest pastures of the family estate. It was only fitting that the place she helped to build would also be the place she would always rest in peace.

    Peace. A word that could be said with a high level of confidence since Liam Vehn successfully negotiated a peace with Nal Hutta two years ago. Since that day, Liam had come under heavy criticism for his brave attempt to put aside long standing hatreds to come to a common understanding with an old enemy. Peace had been to the benefit of the RTO, the Hutts, and also to the benefit of the Republic. Trade was flourishing between Nal Hutta and the rest of the RTO and Nar Shaddaa had experienced a revival of the middle class now that the threat of perpetual warfare had been eliminated.

    The external borders of the RTO secure Liam embarked on a campaign to tour all of the member worlds of the economic organization. Firming up public works projects on Druckenwell, increasing agricultural yield on Roon, examining the old growth on Cularin, helping to make social services and education more readily accessible on Nar Shaddaa, and last but not least the repairing of relations with the Geonosians who had felt neglected and used by past governments in the sector. All in all, the tour had been enormously successful. But there was a darker side to the inner workings of the RTO.

    Factional squabbles between member worlds continued to rear their ugly heads. Many cultures were having a difficult time adjusting to a single currency, open borders, and the transferrance of intellectual, economic, social, and political ideas from one culture to another within the RTO. Debates amongst the tribunate, the legislative body of the RTO, revealed an utter lack of identity and solidarity between member worlds only held together by the strong political will of Liam Vehn and his family. Essentially, the state was too weak to provide a common underlying set of beliefs that everyone within the RTO could buy into and accept as universal rights. The failings of the RTO Charter were becoming ever more apparent to Liam as he had wrapped up his two year tour of the RTO.

    The RTO Charter was an economic agreement not a political agreement and as such was ill equipped to handle a growing minority of voices that called for an overhaul of the government to better represent the wishes of the people. Liam had heard this talk before from some of the same worlds that had once belonged to the Federal Republic of Kamino. That particular experiment had failed catastrophically for nearly the same reasons that were confronting the RTO. Who could unite the member worlds together as one harmonious body and get them to sign a new accord that could bring lasting unity and peace? Already, there was talk of worlds seceding from the RTO. Only one world had ever left the fold of the economic union and that was Tatooine some years back in exchange for helping Liam return to his office as Chairman of the RTO.

    Despite the talk of secession, and the economic implications of such threats, the RTO military had decided to take a wait and see approach as it stayed in dry dock around the military complex of Silver Station. The military had taken a significant beating in the Lannik campaign several years ago and the navy was in a sorry state
  17. Trieste

    Trieste Force Ghost star 5

    Apr 10, 2010
    All things considered, it was not such a far trip from Vandelhelm to Naboo, Kerry Trieste had decided. Content to have seen her Bakura Miners, of which Trieste continued to be the sole owner, defeat the Vandelhelm Jets in overtime, Kerry concluded her visit to the Republican shipbuilding world and made her way without fanfare to Naboo. She had not been formally invited to the coronation of the new Queen of Naboo?their first in some time due to rule by the Privy Court since Sophia?s abdication?and while the arrival of the Supreme Chancellor to any world usually made headlines, the hubbub in Theed allowed Trieste to slip into the city with relative lack of notice from the media as she was on an ?undisclosed personal trip? according to her schedule.

    The well-situated Republican Embassy was not on the main plaza of Theed, but it was still relatively close to the palace and one of its balconies provided a decent view of the festivities. From macrobinoculars, Siona and Kerry (the latter with Senatorial Guard in close proximity given the vulnerability the Chancellor faced in the open air) examined the proceedings.

    ?She carries herself decently,? Kerry remarked of her niece, ?for a fourteen year old.?

    ?You can tell under the paint that she?s not pretty,? Siona said.

    ?Siona,? Kerry rebuked sharply.

    ?I?m stating a fact. I think she gets it from her mother,? Siona continued.

    ?Then she should be grateful,? Kerry replied, ?She is there because of her mother. We are not well loved here.?

    ?We?re lucky she changed her name,? Siona agreed, ?A Trieste sitting on the throne would not go over well.?

    ?A name change doesn?t erase the fact that she?s a member of this House, whether she likes it or not. Whether we like it or not. Naboo chooses a position of power in the RTO over the natural allegiance they should have with the Republic. They have grown used to it,? Kerry continued, still looking through the macrobinoculars, ?and they will brook no interference in their affairs. Our relations cannot be too amicable with the Court of Theed now that one of our own has ascended.?

    ?If Eleanor?Queen Eleanor,? Siona corrected, ?adheres to a path tread by her predecessors that will be no trouble. The Nabooans can talk themselves in circles.?

    ?Piddle, twiddle, and resolve?? Kerry asked with a smirk.

    ?Quite,? Siona replied.

    ?You will need to get further afield than Naboo in your travels,? Kerry said, setting her macrobinoculars down for the first time to pick up her drink from a table, ?The trade agreement will never get passed if it comes through Eleanor. The Senate and the Tribunate will assume we?re using Eleanor for our advantage. It will be too easy to think that we?re manipulating a teenager for our own ends.?

    ?At least the Vehns are getting their house in order. Their new alliance with Nal Hutta has not proved so messy as we anticipated,? Siona said.

    ?And I will take care of the Senate,? Kerry said with confidence and no small bit of determination.

    ?But even so, a member of the Noble House now leads another world. Bakura, Naboo, the Republic?we?re racking up quite a nice record these days,? Siona said, picking up her drink.

    ?The morning shall come when the world is mine,? Kerry said, reciting the house?s words.

    ?Tomorrow belongs to me,? Siona agreed.
  18. Vehn

    Vehn Jedi Master star 4

    Sep 14, 2009
    Theed, Naboo

    ?What is the news of the day, my lords?? Eleanor asked as she flew into the chamber of the Royal Advisory Council, formerly known as the Privy Council, finding her seat at the head of a small oak table. Eleven representatives sat on the council.

    Five representatives were from the cities of Naboo and the remaining six occupied various positions of government that were essential to the stable function of the monarchy.

    ?Your coronation was received well by the people. They are tempted to rename Palace Plaza after you, your majesty,? suggested Cecil Avonlea, the Naboo politician who had taken over as governor of the planet during the Queen?s minority and now had returned to his role as Lord Chancellor and head of the Royal Advisory Council.

    "If that plaza is going to be named after anyone, it will be Queen Amidala," Eleanor responded.

    "There is something else that weighs on my mind," Avonlea said in a slow manner.

    "Yes, yes, what is it!" Eleanor shot out.

    "Siona Lynd, a relative of yours, was overheard saying that she did not feel you were very pretty," Avonlea stated.

    Eleanor stood and headed to the rear of the room where she looked out one of the many windows of the council chamber and stared at the skyline of Theed. A terrible sadness welled up inside of her and then a fierce streak of anger. How dare Siona say such things about her? Where did she suddenly come off knowing what was beautiful and what was not? That old hag would receive a cold visit the next time she came around the palace Eleanor thought.

    Fighting back tears, Eleanor began to pull herself together. "Never mind the rumors," she stated in a shaky voice. "People will always be cruel to one another it seems."

    Eleanor studied her oldest advisor for a long moment wondering why he had brought that rumor up in a state meeting. To get a rise? To see Eleanor explode in a fit of immaturity? Wrong Queen, Cecil. Wrong Queen indeed Eleanor thought. Her young eyes pulling apart the sagging flesh that now surrounded the Lord Chancellor. His age had caught up to him and he did not look well. Too many years in service to the people and government of Naboo had taken a significant toll on his body. Physically, Cecil was ailing but mentally he was as sharp as ever.

    His family was old blood from the city of Kadaara, a town of reputed economic wealth and littered with merchants, and they had made a name for themselves through years of active political work holding the many different facets of Nabooan society together. Cecil had been influential in guaranteeing that the monarchy would be hereditary and continue in perpetuity during the reign of Sophia Quorro and her daughter Camilla.

    ?Continue,? Eleanor instructed.

    ?Moenia is experiencing rising waters and there is reason to doubt if the levees can hold back the water. We could be looking at another food shortage in Theed,? Avonlea said.

    Moenia, the southernmost city in Naboo, had a sizeable Gungan population and was renowned for its fertile lands and friendly people. Unfortunately, a price to be paid for such fertile ground was the constant threat of floods from the Paitnnu Wetlands and even sometimes from the Lasay Swamp. A shortage of food in Theed with the weather changing to a colder season was not something that Eleanor wanted to contemplate but the issue had been broached. Now was not the time to sit on one?s laurels, however limited, now was the time to act.

    ?If there is another shortage in Theed, I think it would be wise to?? Avonlea stopped speaking midsentence.

    ?Send the Royal Corps of Engineers down there to study the levees and report back to me as soon as possible. I do not want our people to be suffering any more than they have to because some idiot long ago decided to put a city in a flood zone. I will not pay for someone else?s mistake. Get it done, Avonlea,? Eleanor stated.

    ?Your majesty, if I may say so..?

    ?No you may not,? Eleanor sharply rebuked causing Avonlea to swallow hard. ?Times are changing here on Theed starting with my reign. No longer are we t
  19. Trieste

    Trieste Force Ghost star 5

    Apr 10, 2010
    Theed, Naboo
    Coronation day

    To not stand with a member of their own family was unthinkable to the Trieste-Vehns. When Eleanor Vehn was presented to the beings of Naboo in all her regalia, they were there, off to one side. It was Eleanor?s moment and they would never infringe upon it, but they were there. It had cost the young girl?no young woman?a lot to reach this moment. Her mother, father, brother, and sister would be there to acknowledge it all.

    Oisin and Verity beamed and applauded with the crowd, proud of their daughter and what she had achieved, what she was taking on her shoulders. It was no easy thing that she was doing, but Eleanor clearly had not been born to easy things. Her brother Austin could not have been happier. He was close to Eleanor and though the separation had been tough, he still adored his sister.

    Only one of the clan stood there uncomfortably. May Trieste was, for an eleven year old, rather self-conscious. It was hard not to be when one bore four very prominent facial scars. Even so, sometimes May could forget them on a rough-and-tumble world like Roon. There beings would look at her with shock that soon became pity, but there was understanding. Roon was not a planet for the faint of heart. It was a place for beings of character and strength. Many who lived there bore scars?and not all of them physical. May was dimly aware of the fact that many beings looked at her with something in their eyes to say, ?Yes, you are one of us.?

    Not so here. Naboo was beautiful and polished. The humans were all so polished and gorgeous. Though there was certainly something?well?funny about Gungans, they too had a certain beauty and bearing about them. None of them had scars. When they looked at May, she saw revulsion in more eyes than she cared to admit. Every time they tried to hide it, but they were not used to such things. Though everyone was looking at Eleanor, May still felt out of place. She shouldn?t be here, not in a place like this. May wanted to bolt, to go somewhere that nobody could see her.

    But one thing kept her in place. Firmly, but not tightly, her father had one hand on her shoulder, keeping her in place. It was not a restrictive grasp, but a reaffirming one. She knew what he was telling her: ?You do not need to be ashamed.? It provided some comfort, but not much.

    May Trieste would be glad when they left Naboo.

    The Vehn-Triestes remained in Theed for a couple weeks. Though Eleanor now had a planet to run, there were still celebratory dinners and events that it was proper that they stay for. They provided precious moments for the family to see Eleanor as well, moments they treasured.

    Even so, the family had to entertain itself for much of the time when Eleanor attended to matters of state. This evening was no exception. Oisin wandered the halls of the marble palace, always amazed at how long they had stood. Bakura had been forced to rebuild and Roon, though it had been inhabited for quite a while, was not a planet of great structures like this. He drew his hand across a cool marble column idly.

    The familiar sound of a piano emanated from a room nearby. Oisin followed the music, which started and stopped with some difficulty, until he found the half open door of a conservatory. Inside was his son Austin, laboring over sheet music being projected by the instrument. Oisin opened the solid wooden door, which caused it to creak and cause Austin to turn and look at his audience.

    ?Hi,? Oisin said, crossing the room to pat his son on the shoulder. He looked at the piece Austin had been attempting. ?Having trouble??

    ?Yes,? Austin said.

    ?Well I believe this calls for a mandoviol, doesn?t it?? Oisin said.

    ?That and a clarinet.?

    He looked around the room, which had many musical instruments and spied one. ?I never learned the clarinet, but I did play the mandoviol many years ago. I suppose it could come back to me.?

    ?Okay,? Austin said as Oisin picked up the instrument and its bow. He sat down on a stool next to his son and nodded for him to begin.

  20. Vehn

    Vehn Jedi Master star 4

    Sep 14, 2009
    Moenia, Naboo

    Jen?ya Pleasington had always enjoyed her morning run in the fog laden city of Moenia, the heart of southern Naboo. The morning run allowed her time to think about the problems of her life as she tore up the finely graveled roads around the perimeter of the city, pushing herself further and faster than the day before. At the end of each run everything would usually clear itself out. The anger she had inside would dissipate and she could head into work refreshed and ready to tackle the challenges of the day.

    Emerging into the foggy center of the city, Jen?ya could see the famed bell tower of the University of Moenia. The university had been built nine centuries earlier during a time when the people had real power over their monarch and such projects were considered a treasure rather than a waste of government money. A democratically elected monarchy Jen?ya reminded herself.

    Pleasington was young, attractive, and maddeningly intelligent and served as an adjunct professor of economics at the university. Despite the best efforts of her male students to try and see if they could get a date with the professor, much to Jen?ya?s chagrin, her life was filled with quiet contemplation and study. When not teaching economics at the university, Pleasington loved getting her hands dirty with the farmers trying to figure out how to best maximize production out of a tired field. Crop rotation had helped but the bottom line was that the farmers were being hurt by weather, price gouging from the government, and a shift in the traditional employment of Naboo to high powered jobs in the cities.

    Old people were left to run the farms while the younger generation sought a different life.

    Pleasington wasn?t personally interested in the politics of the north, the politics of Theed. She had her doubts as to the efficacy of the newly elected Queen to make some significant changes to the way Naboo was governed. The Queen was young, surrounded by advisors that favored hereditary rule, and untested in the world of political intrigue beyond the classroom. Besides, rumor had it that she wasn?t very pretty. No, her political leanings lay in the bread and butter politics of the south, those of agriculture, economics, and an underlying apprehension of flooding from the Paitnuu Wetlands or the Lasay Swamp.

    Jen?ya had seen the arrival of the Royal Corps of Engineers nearly a day ago. They had disappeared into the wet fog armed with a variety of tools and heavy equipment. She hoped they would be successful in preventing the levees that surrounded the southern portions of the city from breaking. The levees, already at their bursting point, had been particularly weakened this year with the heavy rains that were characteristic of the winter season. There was genuine concern that the arrival of the Royal Corps of Engineers had been a half-hearted gesture by a distant ruler who cared neither for the educated populace of Moenia or the food that was locally grown which inevitably wound up on the ruler?s table.

    Entering the courtyard of the university, Jen?ya was halted in mid-step by the blaring sound of a siren from the bell tower. It was a low mournful wail, a sound that had not been heard in Moenia in three generations. It was the sound associated with a flood. Dazed, confused, and not used to being susceptible to a natural disaster, other people around the university looked around at one another not quite sure what to do next. The arrival of massive quantities of muddy water bursting through the four arches leading into the courtyard changed their minds. Mass panic ensued as throngs of people left the university for the safety of higher ground.

    It was simply too late.

    The water rushed through the courtyard knocking people over and breaking through windows, doors, and flooding basements. In the mass hysteria that erupted, Jen?ya Pleasington was knocked to her knees and nearly trampled by the crowd. Head spinning, struggling out of the water, she looked up just in time to see a broken door fly right toward her head.


  21. Trieste

    Trieste Force Ghost star 5

    Apr 10, 2010
    Lang Hall, University of Bakura, Salis D?aar, Bakura

    ?Doesn?t your family own like a huge building in the city?? Jay Rancroft asked his roommate.

    ?Yes, but no one?s living there right now,? Declan Trieste said as he sat on his bed reading over his assignments on his datapad, ?Besides, only two of my aunts and uncles are even in Salis D?aar and they both have their own households. Just because we have our own building doesn?t mean we have to live there.?

    ?So remind me again why you?re here sharing a dorm room and not there??

    ?Because my mother thinks that I need a ?typical college experience,? whatever that is,? Delcan said.

    ?Yeah, having Senatorial Guard across the hallway isn?t exactly typical,? Jay replied.

    ?Well, that wasn?t our choice,? Declan said.

    ?I?m surprised they even let you have a roommate. For all you know, I could be a serial killer,? Jay said.

    ?You know Senatorial Guards apparently don?t have much of a sense of humor, even when they?re in plainclothes?? Declan said.

    Jay paused. ?So what is the food like inside a Republican penitentiary??

    There was a knock on the door. Jay threw a book across the room to hit the panel to slide it open. ?Yeah??

    ?Guys, you need to see this,? one of their classmates said.

    ?See what?? Declan asked, setting his datapad aside.

    ?Look outside.?

    The three guys crowded by the transparisteel and peered outside. ?Look who?s moving in.?

    A hovercar was being unloaded in front of the dorm. Overseeing the process was a dark haired girl of their own age in a UBSD blue and gold sweatshirt. ?Niiiiiice,? Jay said, ?She looks hot.?

    ?Don?t you know who that is? Dec certainly does.? Trieste received a backhanded friendly slap on the arm.

    ?Yes, I know every brunette in the freshman class,? Declan deadpanned.

    ?Oh come on, she?s an old friend of yours!?

    The young woman turned around and Declan squinted at her face. ?I don?t think so??

    ?Wait, you?re telling me that you haven?t hung out your entire life with Ayn Dormingale??

    ?That?s Ayn Dormingale?? Jay said in disbelief, ?What?s she doing here??

    ?Moving in, apparently,? the third classmate said, ?I heard she?d been living in a hotel nearby.?

    ?Guess your mom?s Deputy PM decided her daughter needed the college experience too. But dude, really, you don?t know her? I thought you would have hung out with her all the time!? Jay said.

    ?My mother?s relationship with Sabé Dormingale was entirely professional. I?ve only met Sabé a couple times,? Declan said.

    ?Is that enough for you to introduce me to her daughter? That is one fine woman,? their leering classmate said.

    ?Yes she is,? Declan murmured.

    Republican Embassy, Theed, Naboo

    Siona Lynd had not taken her sister?s advice to heart. She enjoyed Naboo far too much. Besides, this was the political heart of the RTO. Roon was merely an economic center, a mere marketplace where deals were struck. If anything important was going to happen, she was convinced it would happen on Naboo. It saved her the trouble of all the travel.

    ?Ambassador,? her private secretary said, coming onto the balcony where Siona was reclining in the sun, ?I have some troubling reports from one of our contacts. Apparently Cecil Avonlea may be in danger of losing his position on the Privy Council over the floods in Moenia.?

    Siona waved her hand. ?Nonsense. The Quorros and Vehns have leaned upon Avonlea for years. This planet would collapse without him.?

    ?Eleanor Vehn is a young woman. She sees things differently. New generations tend to have opinions that are different from those of their predecessors,? the Duros secretary continued.

    ?It is because that Eleanor Vehn is young that she will seek the advice of the more experienced policymakers around her,? Siona said, ?This smacks of mere rumor.?

    ?Speaking of rumors, it is going around that you??

    Siona had already stopped listening. ?I?ll deal with rumors later. That is all.?

    The Duros reluctantly retired.
  22. Trieste

    Trieste Force Ghost star 5

    Apr 10, 2010
    Supreme Chancellor?s Office, Galactic Senate Building, Coruscant

    Provincial attitudes would not get you far on Coruscant?even if you were the Chancellor.

    Kerry Trieste had been shrewd enough to realize this at the outset of her administration and as a result she brought no one from Bakura with her to begin her Chancellery. Not her private secretary from Marian Square. Not her campaign director to be rewarded with some plum posting. No one. The only people who stepped off the shuttle with the Chancellor-elect were her two children and one of them was now off to college.

    For a woman who had been surrounded from close to birth by the political machine that her father had rebuilt, who had always had friends wherever she had looked, it could have been a lonely feeling. Indeed, it was lonely to leave that all behind in pursuit of greater things. But Kerry Trieste had always been a woman who could make friends and there were plenty of beings looking to hitch their freighters to her shooting star.

    Helena Tandy had been an easy choice for Attorney General. The fact that such a vociferous litigator had been suggested to her by someone like Oren Mott, Treasurer of the Five Brothers and a racketeer to boot, told Kerry that Tandy was someone who straddled lines in a way that the Chancellor could have use for.

    Other top government positions were filled judiciously and with careful consideration. The Senate had no formal parties, only shifting cliques that were perhaps more powerful for their nebulousness. Accordingly, there were no party lines to follow, which suited Kerry just fine. She cherry picked appropriate Senators, promoted midlevel bureaucrats where there was a showing of merit and talent, and generally created a loyal circle of ministers who would faithfully execute her decisions and pursue her priorities. Thus far it had worked out well. After all, there had been no secessions, the Outer Rim economies were stabilizing (slowly, but noticeably), and no one was making too much noise.

    But there was one post that in the last two years, Kerry Trieste had considerable trouble filling suitably: her personal secretary.

    No one was more important to Kerry than her gatekeeper. She?d had an excellent one on Bakura. He hadn?t been impressive looking, but he had done his job well. He had provided a level of sanity to her life and she?d appreciated every minute of it. As much as he had done for her, he was not a secretary for a Chancellor. She?d known that all along and had tearfully thanked him for everything.

    And so, after arriving on Coruscant, Kerry Trieste had been constantly vexed by trying to find a replacement for someone who had been unreplacable. It was why she had gone through three secretaries without any luck.

    But this fourth one?he just might work. Saldor Kann was a very calming Ithorian. In the last four months, Kerry had never heard him raise his sonorous voice even once. He was not without inflection, but always without anger. Senators of the highest standing had shouted at him (Kerry knew?her door was not so thick she heard nothing of what happened in her antechamber) and Kann had never even blinked.

    But Saldor was no ordinary pull from a secretarial pool. Kerry, in frustration, had gone to the one place on Coruscant that owed the Triestes some loyalty: Cracken Plaza. Known as the ?Octopus?s Garden? (though really named for the legendary Rebel spy), the Plaza was home to Republican Intelligence, an organization that Kerry?s father had been the first Director of. His holo still hung prominently in a certain lobby of the institution and the agency remembered well the difficult days that Fionn Trieste had seen them through. Their current director was on good terms with the new Chancellor and when Kerry asked to see a list of candidates from their administrative ranks for her personal secretary, the Director had said, ?I could not stand to lose him, but for the Chancellor I?d give him up. Saldor Kann is the being you want.?

    Kann was of course good at ordinary administrative tasks, but it did not take anyone
  23. Vehn

    Vehn Jedi Master star 4

    Sep 14, 2009
    Moenia, Naboo

    The flooding in Moenia had claimed nearly 4,000 lives and injured scores more. Rioting had broken out in the poorer sections of the city in a direct assault on the inadequate response of the government to control the damage and prevent a further loss of life.

    The Royal Corps of Engineers had done the best they could in slowing and redirecting the raging waters that spun through the lower portions of Moenia. Sandbag fortifications had been erected, as had durasteel barriers, in a vain effort to stop the flow of the water. Shops and homes were flooded. Major businesses were shut down. The city was currently being evacuated by the Royal Security Forces. All the while bodies were still being pulled from the flooded streets and stored in a warehouse for identification by the families.

    Two parents, escorted by a guard from the Royal Corps of Engineers, made their way down one row of bodies, all of which were covered by white sheets from head to toe. The guard stopped at one of the bodies and double checked the number on his datapad to make sure that he was in the right place.

    ?Are you ready?? The guard asked as he knelt down to pull back the sheet from the corpses face.

    The parents nodded weakly.

    Pulling the sheet back slowly the guard looked up into the mother?s eyes and asked. ?Is this your daughter??

    Pain and anguish erupted in the mother?s eyes. She nodded slowly collapsing to the durracrete floor. Tears flowed freely down her red cheeks. It was simply too much to handle all at once.

    ?Yes, that?s my daughter.?

    ?Would you mind saying the name for the record, ma?am??

    ?That?s my Jen?ya,? the woman moaned, ?Jen?ya Pleasington.?


    Theed, Naboo

    The departure of Cecil Avonlea had left a sizeable hole in the Nabooan government. Despite Eleanor?s personal misgivings about the way Cecil had handled the flood in Moenia, she was now regretting having terminated his services as others employed on the Royal Advisory Council lacked the political acumen to accomplish a great deal given their lack of experience in local Nabooan politics.

    Cecil had retired to his family?s estate in Kadaara and would remain there for the rest of his life. Although his service to the Quorro dynasty had been invaluable during the days of Sofia and Camilla, Eleanor Vehn was ushering in a new era and plotting a new course that sought to place Naboo in a satisfactory position with both the Republic and the RTO.

    ?Your highness, we?re ready to take you to Moenia,? informed a palace guard.

    ?Very well,? Eleanor replied as she made her way to the Theed Hangar, dressed in simple clothing and wearing no makeup, where she would board a shuttle for the one hour journey to Moenia.

    The journey to Moenia was uneventful.

    ?Gov, we?re in sight of the city,? the pilot announced.

    Making her way to the cockpit, Eleanor looked at the quarter of the city that was firmly under water. ?Set us down as quickly as possible!?

    The shuttle found a damp plaza to touch down on and Eleanor was out the door escorted by her handmaidens and six security guards of the Royal Naboo Security Forces. Making her way to a command tent, Eleanor stepped inside and surveyed the interior.

    Computer monitors, datapads, and wet clothing were strewn about the various tables that had been set up. Aides flurried in and out dressed in the dark blue garb of the Royal Corps of Engineers. A holographic projector displayed the city of Moenia showcasing the flooded zones in yellow.

    ?Who is in charge here?? Eleanor inquired.

    Nobody responded. In fact, hardly anyone had noticed her they were so busy with their duties.

    ?The queen has asked you a question, answer her!? barked one of the guards belonging to the security detachment.

    ?The queen is in Theed and doesn?t care what is happening in Moenia,? a male voice replied emerging from a side entrance.

    The guard put a hand on his blaster and was about to show the man a thing or two when Eleanor shook her head.

    ?We?re here to help,? Eleanor announced. ?I heard you were looking for a few able bodies to help with
  24. Trieste

    Trieste Force Ghost star 5

    Apr 10, 2010
    Coronet City, Corellia

    ?Cigarra, Chancellor?? Oren Mott offered.

    ?Thank you, no,? Kerry Trieste said, ?This will do me just fine.? She held up her tumbler of Corellian whiskey.

    ?In my humble opinion, Selonian cigarras enhance the pleasure innumerably,? Mott said as a droid prepared on for his, ?Besides, there?s nothing that quite says power like the smoke-filled room, and here you are forcing me to fumigate the place all by my lonesome.?

    ?Mrs. Gilder does not indulge?? Kerry said, turning her head to face the Five Worlds Treasurer?s?the right word was hard to come by, but companion was probably the best one.

    ?I prefer not to, but I allow Mr. Mott his vanities,? Shandra Gilder replied. It appeared her particular vanity was a sweetly flavored liqueur.

    ?Vanity of vanities, all is vanity,? Kerry recited.

    ?And someone must minister to the needs of the beings in this regard,? Oren Mott said, ?I appreciate the Republic?s noninterference in this matter.?

    ?I stand by my deals?and I leave Helena Tandy a large degree of prosecutorial discretion,? Kerry said.

    ?A well-liked figure in the public too, what with the way she strings up white collar criminals and recovers ill-gotten gains for the Republican Treasury, helping to alleviate the debt,? Oren Mott said, ?Us holders of Republican bonds are most appreciative of your Chancellery?s commitment to paying down the public debt.?

    As Bakuran PM, Kerry had wiped out their debt and built a healthy surplus at the end of her 14 years as PM. She?d done exactly the same as Chancellor thus far, though a significant debt remained. As a result, Republican Treasury bills were appreciating in value. Oren Mott had invested heavily and it was no coincidence that as PM, Kerry had directed the Exchequer to put their surplus into Republican governmental securities. It was working out well for all parties involved.

    ?I?ve never been anything but open about my distaste for public debt,? Kerry said, ?The perceptive being who looked down the road deserves the fruits of his foresight.?

    ?Or hers, as the case may be,? Mott said, ?which brings me to my next question. Naboo.?

    ?That was a statement, not a question,? Kerry astutely pointed out.

    ?The question was implied. I?m told you are on your way there for a state visit. Hardly seems like an appropriate time given their recent disaster,? Oren said, finishing with a good puff on the cigarra.

    ?On the contrary, people remember who stood with them in times of crisis. And my niece is an impressionable young woman,? Kerry said.

    ?Given the legendary control of the Taoiseach over the Noble House, I should think that impressions weren?t needed,? Mott remarked.

    ?The problem with teenage girls is that you usually need to steer them away from the direction you want them to go for them to end up there,? Shandra said.

    ?All too true,? Kerry agreed, ?My niece is a young woman governing a large and prominent planet, now with one of the ablest civil servants of this century no longer at her side. She will find the throne an uncomfortable seat.?

    ?But Eleanor Vehn has the advantage of being a Queen who never sought the throne, and that is something few of us can claim,? Oren Mott said gravely.

    ?Indeed. How she handles this current crisis will likely determine whether she is suffered to remain on the throne. There are forces on Naboo that want to see them regain their primacy at the Board of Tribunes. If Eleanor Vehn cannot handle Naboo, she will never bend the Tribunes to her will and the lords and ladies of Naboo are smart enough to know that. The Noble House is now invested in Naboo and we never divest until it suits our needs to do so,? Kerry said.

    ?So then it is a personal interest in the welfare of the court at Theed?? Oren said.

    ?Among other things, yes. A strong Theed makes for a strong Outer Rim. A strong Outer Rim makes for a continued strong Bakura. And a strong Bakura is always in the interests of the Noble House,? Kerry said.

    ?Even if Marian Square lies in the hands of your opponents?? Oren asked archly.

    ?My dear Oren,? Kerry said, ?Fionn
  25. Vehn

    Vehn Jedi Master star 4

    Sep 14, 2009
    Moenia, Naboo

    The cathedral belonging to the Brotherhood of Cognizance was an immense structure capable of holding a sizeable percentage of Moenia?s population. Over a thousand years old, the cathedral of Moenia was widely regarded as the most beautiful place of worship in the southern hemisphere of Naboo. It was renowned throughout the galaxy for its impressive flying buttresses and smooth architectural lines of which it reflected the beauty and art of the core ideals belonging to Nabooan society.

    The Brotherhood of Cognizance, an order devoted to seeking knowledge and promoting the arts, had been called upon by the queen to host a memorial ceremony for the Moenian dead. After seeing firsthand the destruction of Moenia by the flood and participating first hand in efforts to prevent further damage, Eleanor took it upon herself to rectify the situation after hearing the negativity coming from the citizenry about how the queen had let them all down and how little she cared for her planet beyond the comfy confines of Theed Palace.

    Personally affected by the negative comments, Eleanor Vehn had every intention of attending the memorial ceremony and proving to the people that she was one of them. Peering out through a door near the altar of the cathedral, Eleanor could tell that a significant portion of the population of Moenia had come to pay their respects to the dead of their proud city.

    Behind the altar rested a holographic emitter displaying the faces of the 4,401 beings that had been taken by the flooding. Candles lined the nave on either side of the main aisle and cast a transcendent glow on the solemn ceremony.

    ?Whenever you are ready, your highness,? one of the brother?s instructed the queen.

    ?Thank you, brother,? Eleanor replied as she collected her thoughts and her emotions for what was to come next.

    Stepping out of the door, Eleanor walked quietly and confidently to a podium next to the altar. She wore very little makeup, her hair was tied in a short pony tail, and she was dressed in the simple attire of an everyday citizen of Moenia.

    Recognition of who was speaking before them spread throughout the crowd. Whispers turned to talking and the noise began to crescendo out of control.

    Shakily, Eleanor spoke, ?People of Moenia, I come before you not as your queen but as your friend, your countrywoman, and someone deeply touched by the tragedy I have witnessed during my stay in your beloved city,? Eleanor announced into the microphone.

    ?These hands,? Eleanor said as she held them up, ?have worked alongside yours in the formation of sandbag walls that have helped the waters receded. These hands have touched the lives of orphaned children who no longer have parents to care for them. These hands have reached out with compassion, love, and respect to all those who call Moenia home.?

    ?I have heard the negative comments that some of you have made about my reign. I am too young. I am detached from the affairs of Naboo beyond Theed. I do not care about the people. Well, dear citizens, I am here to inform you that I am none of those things. My presence alone in the midst of this crisis should be proof enough of my loyalty and love for all of you. Without your support, I could not be where I am today. We may no longer have a democratic monarchy, we may have strayed a bit from our liberal principles that have guided past rulers, but I can only reassure you in the strongest sense of that word that I am deeply thankful, deeply appreciative, and deeply touched by your patience during these early months of my reign.?

    ?Naboo is a beautiful world. We have lots to offer the galaxy. There is much work to do and that work starts here, in Moenia. I plan on making significant changes to the monarchy to help it become more transparent, more honest, and more open to the everyday concerns of my people. The first step in this long and difficult process begins here in this beautiful town as we gather to honor those who have been taken far too young, far too soon,? Eleanor paused as she began to tear up.

    ?I am reminded of a