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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
    Theed, Naboo

    With Eleanor in Moenia, it provided a perfect opportunity for a relatively discreet landing in the capital of Naboo for the Chancellor. There was still a large media presence?and plenty of questions as to why the Chancellor was visiting with the Queen away?but all of it was handled rather deftly by Kerry?s communications staff.

    ?The Chancellor is taking the opportunity to conduct other diplomatic meetings under the auspices of the Court of Theed,? one media handler said, ?When the Queen returns to Theed, the Chancellor intends to pay a call on her, knowing full well that Queen Eleanor is very involved in the effort to aid Moenia in its hour of need.?

    In reality, Kerry Trieste had arrived early to handle a much less pleasant situation.

    ?You?re recalling me?? Siona said, aghast.

    ?Don?t make me use a harsher word,? Kerry said, ?After all, it?s words that forced my hand.?

    ?What are you talking about??

    ?Your slight of the Queen, which apparently moved around the city rather quickly. You have a teenage daughter. You should know how keenly they feel perceived slights,? Kerry said with no change in emotion, but rather something of a detachment.

    ?This incident has been blown out of proportion,? Siona insisted.

    ?It doesn?t matter anymore. If you had held your tongue, I wouldn?t have had to do this. If you had kowtowed and apologized, I wouldn?t be doing this. But you didn?t. You became too comfortable, too confident in your standing here. You?ve lost perspective and you?ve forgotten that you have no power here,? Kerry said.

    ?That is a lie,? Siona snapped, ?I?ve been leading and molding opinions among the elite here for years.?

    ?Soft power at best,? Kerry said, ?and not within the purview of your mission here. You were to advocate for the Republic and its interests and not ruffle anyone?s feathers in the process,? Kerry said sternly.

    ?I have more experience dealing with these beings than anyone,? Siona shot back, ?Removing me from this post will result in a huge loss of experience and knowledge.?

    ?I am not happy about this decision and if you protest any further I?m going to get much unhappier. You have a choice. Announce you are resigning to assume a number of directorships on Bakura, representing the Noble House?s interests, or I can announce that I?m recalling you. It?s your decision,? Kerry said.

    ?So it?s to be the carrot and stick?? Siona said bitterly.

    ?You are a loyal member of this House who has erred. There are consequences, but if you agree to leave quietly, you will be provided for. I am Chancellor and Taoiseach. I have duty to Republic and family. The two need not contradict, but if forced I will choose the Republic over the Noble House,? Kerry stated.

    Siona paused. ?How much time do I have??

    ?I intend to present Eleanor with our new Ambassador to the RTO when she returns from Moenia. The former Senator El?kba?gan of Bothawui.?

    ?He has not been the most favorable to your agenda in the Senate. To be Amabassador to the RTO is??

    ?A risk, but a calculated one. The Senator aspires to higher things, and he has tact. I believe that he will recognize an opportunity and serve at my pleasure.?

    ?Has anyone told you that you can use people cruelly?? Siona asked with no small amount of bitterness.

    Kerry Trieste said nothing but noticed in the faint reflection of the transparisteel windows that it was becoming harder for her to hide the locks of gray hair streaking her orange red mane.

    ?Yes,? Kerry finally replied, ?they have.?
  2. Vehn

    Vehn Jedi Master star 4

    Sep 14, 2009
    Moenia, Naboo

    The sleek shuttle that had transported Eleanor to Moenia rested in the cobblestone plaza just behind the young queen as she took a final look at the city that had not only changed her perception of the southern region of Naboo but of the people that called the city home.

    ?I fell in love with this city,? Eleanor whispered to the plaza.

    ?I?m glad you did. We worked hard to save it,? a voice from behind her responded.

    Eleanor spun around and looked at the soft eyes of Pter Underwood. He was handsome but also ten years her senior. Part of her regretted leaving Pter. She wanted to get to know him more to see if the feelings rising deep inside of her went beyond mere infatuation. Her heart told her that the two of them had chemistry. Her mind told her something vastly different that the court of Theed would frown upon a union so early in her reign and one with a significantly older partner.

    ?Yes we did,? Eleanor replied, ?such a beautiful city.?

    ?You did right by the people for coming down here, Eleanor,? Pter said.

    ?I hope so,? Eleanor said quietly.

    ?I believe you can return to Theed proud of what you have accomplished during your tour of this elegant city. Moenia will never forget what you have done and shall stand behind you in times of crisis,? Pter said.

    Eleanor looked back at her shuttle. The handmaidens had boarded and the security forces were growing antsy at having to stand on the hard cobblestones. A slight wind picked up her hair and blew a few strands into her eyes. Eleanor blushed a little bit as Pter moved a few of the strands away from her eyes and to a more secure location behind her ear.

    ?Was that too forward of me?? Pter asked.

    ?No, not at all,? Eleanor blurted out. ?No, I think if I had some more time and if I was older??

    ?We might have something, yes?? Pter finished.

    Eleanor nodded.

    ?So wait,? Pter suggested.

    ?You make it sound so easy,? Eleanor said.

    ?Nothing easier in the world, your highness. Once you?re a little bit older maybe we could journey down this road again, together. In a few years your age and my age, it won?t matter anymore. Nobody will care,? Pter responded.

    ?And here I thought saying goodbye to you would be easy,? Eleanor said.

    ?I prefer to say until next time,? Pter replied.

    ?Nothing I can say will make you come to Theed? My city is in dire need of a man with your visionary talents. After all, you?ve done such a nice job in Moenia,? Eleanor?s voice shook ever so slightly.

    ?I cannot come to Theed at this moment. Moenia needs me still. There is much work to be done on those levees to make sure the flooding never happens again. I cannot abandon my position.?

    ?Even on the orders of a Queen of Naboo?? Eleanor inquired.

    ?Well,? Pter paused, ?that might make things a little more difficult. In that case I would have to respectfully decline the command citing personal reasons.?

    A motion out of the corner of Eleanor?s eye caught her attention. A handmaiden was signaling that time was slipping by for their return journey to the capital. News had arrived that the Chancellor of the Republic was here to see the Queen.

    ?I must go,? Eleanor said as she made a move for the shuttle.

    Pter reached out gently and spun her around to look at Eleanor one more time. Quietly and with worn hands, Pter tilted Eleanor?s head down ever so slightly and gave her a kiss on the forehead.

    ?Until next time, Eleanor Vehn,? Pter said.

    ?Until next time, Pter,? Eleanor breathed quietly as she squeezed his hand tightly before running up the ramp of the shuttle.

    Departing quickly the shuttle turned north for home. As the shuttle left the plaza the wash from the engines blew Pter?s cloak around this way and that. Prior to meeting the Queen he had possessed reservations about her ability to rule such a diverse planet. Those had been swept away in the course of her stay on Moenia.

    Time was truly on their side if only they could wait.

    The shuttle touched down inside the streamlined contours of Theed Hangar. Stepping down the ramp, Eleanor turned to a handmaiden and whisper>
  3. Trieste

    Trieste Force Ghost star 5

    Apr 10, 2010
    Theed, Naboo

    There was no proscribed dress for a Supreme Chancellor, not these days. One was expected to maintain some air of dignity and refinement, though, and the Republic had gone with a bluish color scheme this time around, making for a good palate to base one?s wardrobe on. Kerry Trieste thought she looked rather good in blue (it brought out the red in her hair) and consequently had no objection to continuing the tradition. Dark blue pencil skirt, light blue blouse made for a nice contrast. Kerry Trieste had never been a pantsuit politician. On the contrary, why deny her femininity?

    The Queen had called a meeting with the Chancellor in her quarters. It was a surprisingly conservative move. Kerry had expected the throne room reception, but this worked nicely. It was private, it would not have an excess of onlookers. Eleanor would most likely be more at ease, which was vastly preferable to having her on edge. The two had interacted little despite ties of kinship. The aunt wanted her niece to feel easy in their relationship.

    Though the palace was well secured, the Senatorial Guard were not going to leave their charge until the threshold of the door. There, at least, they would allow the Chancellor out of their sight. But during the journey their boots clopped heavily on the marble floor as the modest heels of Kerry?s shoes clacked sharply, adding to the echo.

    The Chancellor was met at the Queen?s door by a porter. ?Madame Chancellor. The Queen awaits.? Kerry inclined her head to indicate that he may precede. He turned and opened the door. ?Supreme Chancellor of the Galactic Republic, Kerry Wyvern Trieste,? he announced.

    Kerry was ushered inside and the door shut behind her. ?Your Majesty,? she said, with a half bow. She was still the Chancellor and though she did Eleanor deference, she could not lower herself too much. ?Congratulations on your relatively recent coronation, and condolences regarding the tragedy in Moenia. Your address from the cathedral was carried throughout the planet and has visibly filled the citizenry with hope that Naboo shall rebuild.

    ?As a first order of business, I regret to inform you that Ambassador Lynd will no longer be representing the Republic in the RTO. After years away from Bakura, she wishes to return to her homeworld, much to the loss of the Republic. In her place Senator El?kba?gan will be shortly presenting himself with credentials on behalf of Coruscant. I hope that Ambassador El?kba?gan will continue the free discourse between Theed as one of the RTO?s strongest member worlds and the Republic.?
  4. Vehn

    Vehn Jedi Master star 4

    Sep 14, 2009
    Theed, Naboo

    Kerry Trieste was every bit as impressive as she appeared to be in holovids and holoimages. Her red mane with accents of gray enhanced her natural beauty and her eyes displayed an intelligence and warmth that went beyond familial ties. Trieste was a woman who had quelled a civil war on Bakura, united the planet in reconstruction, and now was Supreme Chancellor of the Third Republic, handling the affairs of galactic government with as much grace and ease as those on her native Bakura.

    Most importantly, Kerry Trieste was standing in the private quarters of Eleanor Vehn, Queen of Naboo.

    Eleanor returned a nod of respect to her aunt and listened intently as Kerry Trieste artfully extended an olive branch to the young ruler outlining her recent replacement of her sister, Siona Lynd, with the capable Ambassador El?kba?gan.

    Siona had spoken out of turn about Eleanor. The words had lost much of their sharp edge since the crisis in Moenia but they continued to roll around the young queen?s insecure mind in the dark hours of the night when she would lie awake thinking
    about the problems facing Naboo.

    ?I will admit that I am not sad to see your sister depart Theed,? Eleanor said. ?While I believe that your sister had the best of intentions when she first came to Naboo as a representative of Bakura and later the Republic, the politics of this planet had grown to be too much to her liking. She had a bit of a following here in Theed. A following that included many members of the Dormingale household and several influential people at court, but I?m not concerned with past political intrigues. My concern is the relationship Naboo is to have with the RTO and with the Republic. You see, we have a bridge between both galactic governments developing here on Naboo. A bridge that could flourish just as easily as it could be burned. My only hope is that Ambassador El?kba?gan is a capable and just representative of your government?s political interests.?

    ?The pressures placed on my world to be a leader in the RTO are great. We have gone down that road before and have stumbled into disaster. I am not like previous monarchs, Chancellor, for unlike them I hold very few political ambitions beyond this world. It has been said that Naboo could own the RTO in a heartbeat. That we could take what is rightfully ours and no one would be the wiser. I am not so blind as to see that Naboo must be the light that burns brightly in this quarter of the galaxy. We must be responsible, however, with our power at all times. It is when we are irresponsible, like on Lannik, that great disasters occur.?

    ?Uncle Liam has been breathing down my neck to get the political dialogue rolling with the Republic,? Eleanor admitted sounding a bit tired, ?I?m sorry if I seem so forward. I find it difficult to carve my own path amid all of the competing voices for my attention.?

  5. Trieste

    Trieste Force Ghost star 5

    Apr 10, 2010
    Theed, Naboo

    Well, she might have received extensive education and training preparation for becoming Queen, but Eleanor Vehn was still a young woman who did indeed freely air her thoughts. A more tactful, polished politician would not have engaged the topic of Siona?s recall?at least not in such terms. But it was of little matter to Kerry. They both knew where they stood on the matter and one fly in the ointment had been removed from the relationship. But the Queen?s candor was refreshing from the overly polished tones of the Senate and Coruscant.

    ?Beginnings of administrations are always the hardest as one sets precedent and learns the ropes,? Kerry said, ?which is why I am not here to ask much of you. All I ask is a formal and personal introduction to the Board of Tribunes on Roon. Everyone knows the Chancellor, but as Queen you are known to them. Approaching them together will strengthen your position and keep me from seeming like the overbearing Republic coming to dictate terms. I daresay that the combination provides advantages to all parties involved.

    ?Now, until then, I see no reason not to enjoy ourselves on a scenic world like Naboo, don?t you??

    [i]University of Bakura, Salis D?aar
    Salis D?aar, Bakura[/i]

    He might be the son of a Chancellor, but he was the son of a Chancellor who felt that her son should know how to do his own laundry, which is why Declan Trieste was in the common laundry room shared by two floors in his building separates his darks from his lights so as not to have them all wind up the same hue by the end of the wash cycle.

    It was in the middle of this process that he was interrupted with, ?So I finally get too meet the great Declan Trieste.?

    Turning, Declan found himself face to face with Ayn Dormingale.


    ?Everyone keeps asking me if I know you so I figured I had to meet you somehow,? Ayn said as she leaned against the wall of the laundry room.

    ?Funny, people keep asking me the same thing,? Declan said, ?After all, we [i]should[/i] have met at some point, shouldn?t we??

    ?We should have,? Ayn agreed, ?If it hadn?t been for my grandmother who for some reason saw fit to keep me well away from pretty much every politician?s kid there was.?

    ?And was there a reason for that?? Declan asked with some amusement.

    ?Oh yes. I learned too well from her,? Ayn said with a smile.

    ?I don?t suppose that would be why she cloistered you in a hotel, or is that just a malicious rumor??

    ?A very malicious one,? Ayn said, ?That happens to be true. But not for that reason.?

    ?Oh really??

    ?Really. She put me there because she didn?t want me near the handsome young Bears of UBSD,? Ayn said.

    ?Afraid you?d succumb to their charms?? Declan asked with an arched eyebrow.

    ?More a case of protecting them. From me.?

    ?I?m beginning to think I know why [i]my[/i] mother never insisted we meet.?

    ?And yet here we are,? Ayn said, ?living in the same dorm. I suppose it was fate.?

    ?Funny thing that fate, isn?t it?? Declan said.

    ?Hilarious, actually,? Ayn said with a broad smile.>
  6. Vehn

    Vehn Jedi Master star 4

    Sep 14, 2009
    Nime, Roon

    While maintaining a low profile, unsure of how a visit by the Chancellor of the Republic would be taken by the populace, Eleanor took the time to show Kerry the beautiful lake country and the Gallo Mountains. The stunningly clear mountain lakes and harsh rock jutting up from the plains was absolutely breath taking and Eleanor wished she could move the capital from Theed to a retreat high in the mountains.

    But that simply would not do. Tradition was tradition and although the people of Naboo had given up much for the hereditary monarchy, they would never agree to moving the capital of Naboo away from Theed. Theed was the heart of the entire operation. Theed was the conductor that ran the symphony, the artist that put the finishing touch on a masterpiece, and ultimately, the very symbol of unity amongst the people toward their sovereign ruler. Without Theed, Naboo would crumble to a thousand different factions squabbling for power.

    When the tour of Naboo was completed, Queen Eleanor took Kerry to Roon for a personal meeting with the Board of Tribunes. Eleanor was not very keen to waiting in the lobby while Kerry stated her case to the decision making body of the Roon Trade Organization. Prior to Kerry?s entrance into the chamber of the Board of Tribunes, Eleanor whispered, ?I have very much enjoyed your visit. I hope to return the favor one day and see Coruscant in all of its entirety. I will leave you now, dear Aunt, with one piece of advice. Hit them hard and strong in the beginning and the Board of Tribunes will crumble to your will. They are an indecisive, factional, and overly pampered group of administrators. It is not too different from your Senate. Focus on Druckenwell, Tribune Kaitlyn Ypres. Win her support and you win the board.?

    ?I look forward to seeing you again Safe travels, Chancellor,? Eleanor said as she gave Kerry a polite bow before leaving with her handmaidens.

    Tesserone had never looked better. The continuing presence of Oisin and Verity on the Vehn family home had turned what once was a dilapidated property into a well maintained retreat in the mountains. Joaquin, getting older every day, had turned more and more responsibility over to the younger generation living in the same household.

    Eleanor had stepped out of the armored speeder that she used to get around on foreign planets and examined the beautifully painted exterior of Tesserone taking in the wide vistas and the calls of animals happily basking in the remaining light of a winter?s day.

    ?Stay here. I shall not be long,? Eleanor said to both her armed escort and her handmaidens.

    Stepping onto the wooden porch that surrounded Tesserone Eleanor was reminded of the few years she spent at the family ranch before beginning her official training for the monarchy. Years of petting animals, family picnics to the Huscarl Mountains, and of warm fires on the cold winter nights surrounded by her father, mother, and two siblings.

    Those memories were but a distant dream.

    The front door opened. Eleanor nearly was overcome with tears as she saw the delicate features of her mother for the first time since the coronation.

    ?Eleanor? Oh, it is you!? Verity exclaimed as she wrapped her oldest daughter in a tight hug.

    ?What has brought you home? Is everything all right??

    ?Everything is fine, Mama. Just wanted to stop by before I returned to Naboo, wasn?t sure when I would get another
    opportunity,? Eleanor choked out, fighting back tears.

    ?Come in, dear. I?ll fix you a cup of tea,? Verity said as she directed her daughter to the family room.

    ?May, Austin, your sister is here!? Verity called.

    Austin burst into the room and nearly tackled his sister. He had grown so much since Eleanor had last seen him. Falling onto a nearby sofa, laughing, Eleanor shoved her brother off her and adjusted her fine clothes.

    ?Is that any way to greet a Queen?? Eleanor teased.

    ?You may be a Queen but you will always be my sister first,? Austin shot back.

    Next to enter the room was May. Eleanor felt a lump rise in her throat as she >
  7. Trieste

    Trieste Force Ghost star 5

    Apr 10, 2010
    Nime, Roon

    ?Thank you,? Kerry Trieste said simply. She was the sort of being who weighed the words of others carefully before she acted and did not act rashly, but in certain things Kerry Wyvern Trieste trusted to her own judgment and instinct. This was one of those matters.

    The doors to the Board of Tribunes? chamber opened and Kerry Trieste approached them. In deference, the Tribunes stood.

    ?Madam Chancellor, it is our pleasure to welcome you to the capital. We hope it has been to your liking,? Kaitlyn Ypres said, speaking for the Board.

    ?Quite,? Kerry said, assuming a place at the end of the table, which coincidentally allowed her to look down the table at the Tribunes all at once. She did not sit. ?Honorable Tribunes, you are beings of business. Accordingly, I have no doubt that you place a great premium on your time and I shall keep my business here brief.

    ?I have long advocated for free trade between the Republic and the RTO. In this none can accuse me of ever having wavered. It has been a primary goal of my chancellery to see this accomplished, a chancellery that now enters its third year. The Senate, the primary obstacle on my end to achieving any agreement on trade, and I are now on appropriate terms.? Kerry began to walk slowly around the table as she spoke. ?Furthermore, you have sorted out your peccadillos with the Hutts and resolved things on Lannik. They were, in their time, liabilities, but the RTO has shown it can handle its own problems.

    ?But the Republic cannot come to you. It would never do. No, the RTO must come to us. And that is why I am here today. All you must do is make a proposal to the Senate. It need not be perfect, the details will be negotiated by the proper functionaries. And once you propose, the Senate is bound to agree in time. Gentlebeings, I think it is safe to say that we may safely toast to free trade between the Republic and the RTO.?

    ?That seems premature, Chancellor,? the Tribune from Leritor said leerily.

    ?Hardly. Once your proposal is before the Senate, Bakura will endorse it. Where Bakura goes, the Outer Rim is bound to follow. Where the Outer Rim goes, so do the Inner and Mid Rims.

    ?What makes you so sure you can do it?? the Tribune from Cularin asked.

    [link]?Ha!?[/i] Kerry exclaimed, ?My name is Kerry Wyvern Trieste and Bakura is my home. The Triestes are the first family of Bakura. May the Sith burn my lands if I can?t deliver to your hands a treaty on trade reciprocity.?

    ?You promise large things,? the Tribune from Thaere stated.

    ?Friends, I?ve won a civil war, four planetary elections, and a galactic election. If there?s anything I?d have you take away from today, it?s that you don?t bet against me,? Kerry said with a smile, ?And really, what do you have to lose??

    ?Respect. Getting rebuffed by the Republic will not look good for us,? the Tribune of Rothana replied.

    ??Respect??? Kerry echoed, ?The RTO is about business, is it not? Since when did it matter if anyone respected you as long as you got rich??

    ?Beings do business with beings they respect,? Tribune Ypres said, ?It?s as simple as that.?

    ?And tell me, who would respect the RTO if it was too afraid to go after the biggest prize of them all, the worlds of the Republic?? Kerry asked.

    She left it at that.

    [i]Tesserone, Roon[/i]

    ?You didn?t have to come,? Oisin said as he ushered his sister inside, ?This is our matter.?

    ?Hardly. This is a matter for the Taoiseach,? Kerry said, ?and in this I must ask you and Verity to respect my authority.?

    ?Do you ask something of us?? Oisin said.

    ?Yes. First, privacy. Second, your forebearance for a short period of time,? Kerry said.

    ?I would have preferred a straighter answer,? Oisin replied.

    ?You?re the poet who plays with words,? Kerry said with a smirk, ?You deserve what you dish out.?

    Oisin just chuckled and pointed down the hall. ?You?ll find May in the sitting room, as requested.?

    ?Thank you,? Kerry paused to kiss her brother on the cheek before entering the sitting room, quietly shutting the door >
  8. Trieste

    Trieste Force Ghost star 5

    Apr 10, 2010
    The Plaza, Salis D?aar, Bakura

    Siona Lynd was rudely awoken with a slap to the face. The result was that she came to in the act of falling off the couch where she had passed out the night before.

    ?What the frak!? she exclaimed as she sat up on the floor.

    ?I should say the same to you,? Regan said sternly, ?Exercise a little self respect.?

    ?What right have you to come in here and do that?? Siona said as she gradually became aware of the pounding in her head.

    ?What right have you to power through the wine cellar of the family home because you?re miserable our sister fired you?? Regan retorted as she pressed a button to draw open the curtains of the study where Siona had apparently fallen asleep.

    Since returning to Bakura from Naboo, Siona had possessed little inclination to go hunting for her own residence. With Kerry?s permission, she was ?temporarily? keeping her family in what the family called the Plaza, the seven storey private building that had once been the capital residence of Fionn and Jane Trieste, who had not cared to raise their seven children wholly in the confines of Marian Square. Once Kerry and her siblings came of age, they all chose to establish their own homes. Kerry had left for Marian Square (and now Coruscant), Siona had been on Roon and Naboo, Fiona had her quarters first on her ship and now at the Fleet Academy, Conn had a private condo near the University, Regan had her flat elsewhere in the fashionable southeastern end of Salis D?aar, Ronan was in Denon when he wasn?t in Nouvelle Orleans, and Oisin was on Roon. It was a simple matter to unshutter the Plaza for Siona during her supposed search for a new home.

    ?You of all people should understand the tyranny of our dear sister the Chancellor,? Siona said, squinting against the light, ?She cares little for others. Some Taoiseach she is of this House.?

    ?I know that if you drink yourself into a stupor, you?ve allowed her to win,? Regan replied, ?I?ve seen the directorships she?s given you. Nexus Health. Bellvedere Repulsors. Nova Interstellar. Corynth Systems. Diversified industries, each with strong market share. You could have done much worse. One might even say that Kerry was generous with you.?

    ?My life was as a diplomat. It was what I was called to do,? Siona moaned.

    ?And before that you were a Senator. Someone who got things done, who called others to account,? Regan said sternly, ?Remember that. They?re good traits for someone who sits on corporate boards. You realize that shareholders almost never vote their board members out, don?t you? Few of them care enough one way or another. It?s a very cush job and if you network properly, you might be able to make a play for more desirable boards.?

    ?And still I?d owe it all to Kerry,? Siona said bitterly.

    Regan walked over and slapped Siona again. ?You don?t get it, do you?? Regan said, holding her face very close to Siona?s, ?We all owe it to her. I owe what I have now to her. You think Fiona would be Commandant of the Academy if it weren?t for Kerry? You think Ronan would have ever leveraged the Kattans into supporting his Eden takeover? Would Conn, the colossal frak up he?d been earlier in his life, ever have gotten a tenure track professorship? We owe everything to our Taoiseachs. Everything. And when you reconcile yourself to that fact you might be able to begin planning for the future.?

    ?What future? All we have to look forward to is fawning at the feet of Declan or Falene. You know that none of our children will ever cross Kerry?s mind as her successor.?

    ?You shortsighted nitwit,? Regan sighed, ?While our sister is off on Coruscant ruling the galaxy, her son is here on Bakura growing into a man?and one who it is good to invite to dinner on a regular basis. You do know that boys in college will take just about any free meal they can get. I?m happy to provide one.? The doors to the lift opened and Regan headed towards them. ?Besides, I quite like him. I flatter myself that I see a little something of myself in him.?

    ?Where are you going?? Siona said as she rubbed
  9. Vehn

    Vehn Jedi Master star 4

    Sep 14, 2009
    Theed, Naboo

    The Pink Naberrie was one of the upper scale night clubs in Theed. It was the place to go to have a smashing good time. The music was loud, the drinks were strong, and everyone was wearing their evening best as they swayed with the music. All beings were welcome to attend their nightly parties. Celebrities from around the galaxy looking for a good time on Naboo stopped by the Pink Naberrie before heading on to more illicit activities.

    The Pink Naberrie also happened to be one of the patrons of a growing number of young, educated, and out of work men and women who were very politically active in trying to bring back the age old tradition of a democratically elected monarch. These young beings were not against the rule of Queen Eleanor Vehn. Rather, they were very much in support of a young queen on the throne and firmly believed that she would deliver Naboo from its forty six year old hereditary monarchy.

    ?Half a century and still we are fighting for our democracy,? grumbled a young graduate of Theed University.

    ?At least the queen understands the younger generation,? a female Gungan replied.

    ?She is so young and yet she rules this planet with the wisdom of the ancients,? remarked a human from Moenia.

    ?Ever wonder how she got to the throne so quickly?? A new voice asked of the group.

    Eyes turned to look at the new voice. Startled looks crept over the many faces of the young students. They recognized the man who had just spoken. He had been important, once, to the Nabooan government. Was once their top diplomat but had been recalled from Bakura due to a scandal of a financial nature.

    ?Never thought about it,? one young man replied a bit too quickly.

    ?Shame, it would make such a good story,? the new voice responded.

    ?Yeah, why is that?? the Gungan asked.

    ?What if I told you that the bombing of the Privy Council a few years ago was an inside job?? The new voice inquired of the group.

    Mouths dropped and the attention of the young group of college graduates and students was fully locked on the new voice. The new voice of reason and the new voice to shed light on an event that had never fully been explained to the public?s content.

    ?Are you saying that the queen is responsible for the bombing??

    ?No. I?m suggesting that someone in her family is,? the new voice replied.

    ?Where is your evidence?? the Gungan pressed.

    ?My evidence is in my name.?

    ?What is your name??

    ?Thomas Avonlea, son of Cecil Avonlea who was the former Lord Chancellor of the now reduced Privy Council,? Thomas announced.

    ?Tell us more,? the young students asked believing Thomas for every word, desperate for an answer to their political problems.

    ?I cannot reveal the identity of the bomber just yet,? Thomas teased. ?You must do something for me first.?

    ?Anything,? the Gungan blurted out.

    ?Publish this story in the Theed Chronicle and when the damage has been done I shall reveal the identity of the bomber,? Thomas said as he passed a few datapads around to the students.

    ?Won?t this damage the queen??

    Thomas, in the dark glow of the club, merely smiled and replied, ?No, it will only make her reign that much stronger.?

    ?Have you heard the news, gov?? the aide to Queen Eleanor Vehn asked as she pulled back the curtains to the royal apartments.

    ?What news?? Eleanor asked sleepily having just returned from her visit to Roon the night before.

    ?Report in the [i]Theed Chronicle[/i] states that the bombing of the Privy Council when you were finishing school was an inside job,? the aide replied.

    ?What!? Eleanor shrieked. The young woman dove on the flimsi and devoured the article with her eyes. Her breathing became rapid and her mind began to race with the political fallout from the article.

    ?No, no, no!? Eleanor moaned as she finished the article. Tears formed at the corners of her eyes.

    ?Bring me the head of security, now!? Eleanor yelled to her aide.

    The Captain of the Palace Guard, Sir Robert Norden, entered the throne room and stood at attention. He had a muscular build and w>
  10. Trieste

    Trieste Force Ghost star 5

    Apr 10, 2010
    The Chancellor?s shuttle dropped out of hyperspace and began a direct descent to Bakura. ?When Princess Leia Organa Solo first saw Bakura, she said that the planet reminded her of Alderaan. A wetter Alderaan, but still, she saw much of one of the great jewels of the Core in this distant orb of the Outer Rim,? Kerry told her nephew May, ?It is something that we Bakurans hold dear, even if the rest of the galaxy does not always acknowledge the natural advantages and beauty of out planet.?

    May nodded as they dived through the clouds.

    ?Unfortunately, I have business to transact on Bakura. One always does well to remember where you come from. That is why I wanted you to come with me. You may have been born on Roon, but Bakura is in your heritage and your soul,? Kerry said, ?I have asked your Aunt Regan to show you what the Noble House is all about. It will culminate in attending the Miners and Jets game at Bakura Gardens, which hopefully will be better than last week?s outing on Mandalore.?

    ?I?m a Smugglers fan. That?s what we always watch on Roon,? May said.

    ?You happen to be an owner of the Bakura Miners. The Noble House of Trieste owns the team. Though I serve as Chairman of the team, it is yours as well as mine,? Kerry said, ?I think one day at the Gardens might change your mind.?

    ?Your father and I and all of our brothers and sisters were part of something that people called the Wonder Generation,? Regan told May, ?All seven of us have achieved great things in diverse fields. Your father in poetry, Aunt Kerry in politics, Aunt Siona in diplomacy, Aunt Fiona in military service, Uncle Conn in academics, Uncle Ronan in business, and myself in law. Part of what makes the Noble House great is that we have interests in so many things. This represents the pinnacle of my achievement.?

    Regan stood with May in the chambers of the Bakuran Supreme Court.

    ?I serve as an Associate Justice of the Supreme Court, a lifetime appointment if I so choose,? Regan said, ?Considering we tend to be long lived here on Bakura, that?s not a bad thing to have. The decisions that I make, with my six colleagues, on legal issues have huge impact on what happens on Bakura in almost every aspect of life.?

    ?That?s very important,? May observed.

    ?Quite important, which is part of what makes our job so difficult,? Regan said, ?that and the temperament of some of my colleagues. I won?t say whom, mainly because you never know what clerk might overhear in this building.?

    ?That there is the [i]Pegasus[/i], the finest ship in the Defense Fleet,? Regan said, ?Bakura is privileged in that we have been granted the dispensation for a standing militia due to our history of conflict on the edge of the galaxy. Your Aunt Fiona was the commander of the [i]Pegasus[/i] for many years, including during our Civil War.? The pair were in a shuttle, touring Bakura by air. ?Now Fiona is Commandant of the Fleet Academy, a prestigious posting for any officer.?

    ?What does the Commandant do?? May asked.

    ?It is, essentially, an administrative post, but she has the responsibility of molding the next generation of officers of the Defense Fleet,? Regan said, ?The decisions she makes about what the ensigns study has great impact on our ability to defend ourselves against threats, known or unknown.?

    ?The University of Bakura, Salis D?aar, one of Bakura?s great institutions of learning. The Noble House has always been a patron of UBSD, as we call it here. Our second Taoiseach, Fionn Cormac Trieste, was the first member of the Noble house to attend the university. His name is now on the building that houses the Political Science department. Uncle Conn teaches in that department, and Aunt Nessa sometimes lectures. Her mother, Master Wydra, was a great Jedi and perhaps just as great of a political thinker. She taught here too, and helped Uncle Conn earn his degree. Your grandfather, Fionn Dunross Trieste, also attended UBSD and there is now a statue of him on the campus. Aunt Kerry and Aunt Siona both went there too.

    ?And where did you go, Aunt Regan??

    ?To the v>
  11. Trieste

    Trieste Force Ghost star 5

    Apr 10, 2010
    ??these holos show the three championships of the Miners since the Noble House purchased the team. Your grandfather Fionn singlehandedly rebuilt this team with Dana Roslyn as captain for three straight Final appearances and a Galactic Cup in 226, 10 years after he rescued the team from oblivion,? Regan said, ?In 252, Aunt Kerry became Taoiseach and the Miners won the Cup. Because the reins of the team passed during the season, Kerry always said that she shared that Cup with your grandfather.?

    ?And that?s you!? May said, pointing to another picture that showed Regan and Kerry jointly lifting the Galactic Cup.

    ?Yes, when the Civil War was on Aunt Kerry couldn?t see to the team like she wanted, so she asked me to be Chairman for a few years. In 259, we just happened to win another Galactic Cup,? Regan said with no small amount of pride.

    ?And she hasn?t let us forget it since,? Fiona moaned, interrupting.

    ?You?re just jealous it wasn?t you, peg leg,? Regan replied, lightly kicking Fiona?s prosthetic leg, a replacement for the one she?d lost in a starfighter crash when serving in the Republican Navy.

    ?I can still kick your butt with this leg,? Fiona said, ?And I?m the one that actually played college Limmie, thanks very much.?

    ?I have to admit, that time you put Kerry into the turf, it was a beautiful sight,? Regan said wistfully.

    ?Yeah, memories are all you?ve got,? Kerry said, ?because the Senatorial Guard will shoot you if you ever try that in a family game.?

    ?I don?t even know why we let you play if you?re going to take that attitude,? Fiona said sourly, ?Such a killjoy.?

    ?Hey, take it up with them. I don?t tell them to do that. I don?t have a choice in the matter,? Kerry said.

    ?Sure they don?t,? Ronan replied sarcastically, ?Mandy, didn?t your grandmother tell the Guard what to do when she was Chancellor.?

    ?Oh all the time,? Mandy replied with mock seriousness, ?All the time. They just ate out of her hand, you know.?

    ?Why does Aunt Mandy wear purple shoes?? May asked Regan.

    ?Because I like to remind these hosers that the Denon Demons are still the greatest team in Limmie. They would have been able to put up more than 10 points on the Mercs last week,? Mandy said, answering for her sister in-law.

    ?Oh you have got to be kidding. When was the last time the Demons even played for a Premiership? Huh?? Conn challenged.

    ?They?ve done better than the Patriots in the playoffs, that?s for sure,? Mandy challenged.

    ?Don?t you dare go there!? Nessarose shouted.

    ?It seems I haven?t missed all the festivities,? Declan said, entering the box at that moment.

    ?Just the usual, Deck,? Ginnifer Lynd said, ?And we haven?t even gotten the second round of drinks.?

    ?Good to see you Declan,? Kerry said, kissing her son on the cheek, ?Brought a friend I see??

    ?You know Ayn Dormingale, don?t you mother?? Declan said.

    ?Only through your mother, my dear,? Kerry said, gently kissing Ayn on the cheek, ?Your mother always preferred to keep her personal and public lives separate, even with me.?

    ?That would be my mother,? Ayn said, ?It?s her way.?

    ?I won?t begrudge her that considering all she?s done for me, and for this family, over the years,? Kerry said.

    ?I believe the majority of the debt still resides with the Noble House of Dormingale,? Ayn said graciously.

    ?But aren?t we the Noble House?? May asked.

    ?We admired the Noble House of Trieste so much that we laid claim to the title as well. Also, we didn?t much like the House of Sweetwater,? Ayn explained, ?and my mother was once a Princess, back when Princesses won elections on Naboo, rather than were born.?

    ?Nasty news on Naboo, by the way. It seems someone was intent on killing the Privy Council,? Ronan idly observed, ?Eden has taken a short term sell position on Naboo stocks. We expect a great deal of market volatility as a result.?

    ?I go to Roon and tell them to make a presentation to the Senate and now their house is out of order again,? Kerry sighed as she accepted a drink.

    ?Well at least the Miners are back home. We better pound the Jets t
  12. Trieste

    Trieste Force Ghost star 5

    Apr 10, 2010
    May Trieste returned to Roon, her eyes opened to what it meant to be a member of the Noble House and life on Bakura continued on.

    ?What?s the deal with the cousin with the scars?? Ayn Dormingale asked as she reclined on Declan?s bed. Despite arched eyebrows directed at them at the game by various relatives, the pair were simply friends. They had the same sense of humor and enjoyed the other?s company. Besides, everyone they met expected them to be friends, so they might as well keep up appearances.

    ?Nobody talks about it,? Declan said, ?It happened a few years ago. Uncle Oisin won?t say a thing about it and Aunt Verity just looks at him any time in comes up.?

    ?Which ones were they??

    ?They weren?t there, but they?re May?s parents. They live on Roon.?

    ?Right. Queen Eleanor?s their daughter?? Ayn asked, but only to confirm her knowledge.

    ?Indeed. I?ve barely met her,? Declan said, ?I know her brother Austin better.?

    ?So what?s the deal with her being Queen Eleanor Vehn? It is Vehn, right? But her dad?s a Trieste.?

    ?Family politics. The Vehns were going to die out because Aunt Verity?s brother Liam didn?t have any kids with Queen Sofia,? Declan said, ?I could care less about it honestly.?

    ?So then why is May a Trieste??

    ?You know, for a supposed member of a Noble House, you understand nothing about how Bakuran families work,? Declan interjected.

    ?I?m in a House of two, so our family relationships are pretty simple,? Ayn said, ?and you?re avoiding the question.? That was something else that the two did well?they called each other out without hesitation.

    ?The way my Mom tells it, she gave each of the three kids the chance to choose if they wanted to be a Vehn or Trieste. Austin and Eleanor went Vehn, May stayed Trieste,? Declan said.

    ?Wonder why?? Ayn mused.

    ?Why Mom gave them the choice??

    ?Why May didn?t follow her siblings,? Ayn said, ?I wonder??

    Declan just shrugged. ?I?ve got more important things to think about. Like next week?s history exam.?

    ?I keep telling you, just sleep with Professor Naier,? Ayn said, ?It?s so much simpler.?

    ?Some of us have ethics and morals you know,? Declan said with a glare at his friend, ?Speaking of which, I heard from Tomas that you spent the night in the room of a certain Limmie player?s dorm room?? Declan arched an eyebrow inquisitively.

    ?Patently untrue. I left before the night was over,? Ayn said, completely unphased and unabashed.

    ?You intending to work your way through the entire starting lineup??

    ?Is that a challenge??

    ?Oh Maker, don?t say you?re going to try now,? Declan groaned, putting his head in his hands.

    ?You do give me some of my best ideas,? Ayn said with a smirk.
  13. Vehn

    Vehn Jedi Master star 4

    Sep 14, 2009
    Theed, Naboo

    ?Thank you for coming on such short notice,? Queen Eleanor Vehn said as she sat across from Tribune Kaitlyn Ypres, the pair enjoying an afternoon cup of tea on one of the many beautiful balconies jutting out from Theed Palace overlooking the waterfalls of the famous city.

    ?I always enjoy an afternoon in Theed, with good company,? Kaitlyn responded, tipping her head in the slightest of nods.

    Eleanor paused. Her mind was troubled by the recent conclusion of the investigation into the bombing of the Privy Council several years ago. She now knew who was responsible for the bombing. Knew that the people of the Naboo and the RTO were clamoring for reform both on Naboo and in the greater economic union as a whole and the young queen understood that whatever decision she made with regards to those responsible for the bombing would have lasting repercussions. Consequences so distinct and vibrant that they could literally shatter all that her family had worked for nearly a generation.

    Unfortunately, despite the clear implications of the bombing, all that Eleanor could think of was one word: why? Why was violence the only answer to the galaxy?s problems and why must the problem land firmly in her lap. Deep down, Eleanor knew that if her reign was to survive she would have to be brutally clear in navigating out of the mine field that now lay all around her.

    ?Your majesty, is something wrong?? Kaitlyn inquired stirring Eleanor from her thoughts.

    Sighing, Eleanor spoke, ?Are you familiar with the bombing that took place here on Naboo a few years ago??

    ?You mean the bombing that eliminated the Privy Council??

    Eleanor nodded.

    ?I am not privy to the details. It was my understanding that democratic loyalists were behind the attack. I believe they were attempting to bring back the democratic monarchy during a time when you were still in your minority. If I remember correctly, your uncle was briefly put in charge of the government on Naboo following the abdication of your aunt, Camilla Quorro,? Ypres recited.

    ?What if I told you that it was an inside job? What if I told you that the person responsible for the bombing would do anything to make sure that I ascended to the throne??

    ?Excuse me?? Kaitlyn inquired sitting up straighter in her chair.

    ?A report was published several weeks ago in the Theed Chronicle stating that a man had information proving that the Privy Council had been assassinated by someone at the top of the RTO. Involved in the assassination were lower ranked members of our very own government,? Eleanor breathed, the words coming out in clipped tones, her mind still refusing to believe what she now knew to be true.

    ?Who would do such a thing??

    A lump rose in her throat and it was difficult for Eleanor to maintain her composure. Struggling to form the words, Eleanor adjusted her ornate headpiece. ?If I tell you, you must keep it a secret. You must never tell anyone else and do as I request if I need your help to resolve this problem. Too many lives have already been lost as a result of several beings ambitious planning.?

    ?On my life, you may trust me. The Ypres family may be many things but we have long been known for our ability to keep secrets,? Kaitlyn replied, looking Eleanor in the eye as she placed a gentle hand on the queen.

    ?Who did this, my lady?? Kaitlyn inquired.

    ?Uncle Liam,? Eleanor sobbed, plunging her face into her hands.

    ?Frak it all,? Kaitlyn replied shaking her head in disgust.

    ?Who else??

    ?Cecil Avonlea, Thomas Avonlea, and Lord Alastair McCullough,? Eleanor choked out.

    Kaitlyn?s brow furrowed. She was familiar with the role the Avonlea family had once played in the Nabooan government but never would she have suspected that they would be behind such a heinous act. An act that violated common law and an act that was punishable by death. The Board of Tribunes, by right of the RTO Charter, had a vested interest in the well being of all of the member worlds of the RTO and if one world was tossed into chaos by the irresponsible leadership of a few beings, the Boa
  14. Vehn

    Vehn Jedi Master star 4

    Sep 14, 2009
    Nime, Roon

    The conference room of the Board of Tribunes was eerily quiet, despite the constant traffic in motion beyond the floor to ceiling windows, as the governing body of the Roon Trade Organization was drawing to a close a trial surrounding the involvement of Liam Vehn in a bombing of the Privy Council of Naboo four years earlier.

    Queen Eleanor Vehn, sitting off to one side of the conference table, studied her uncle with a mixture of emotions ranging from disdain to utter sadness as the evidence was tallied against him by the various tribunes. She shifted uncomfortably in her seat as the verdict was read: guilty.

    ?Liam Vehn, you are found guilty by the Board of Tribunes for your role in the bombing of the Privy Council in 264 ABY.
    After a lengthy discussion with your family, the Board of Tribunes has decided to grant you life. In so doing, the Board of Tribunes has ruled that you are to never seek political office again in the Roon Trade Organization and that you shall be exiled to your family?s estate at Tesserone. Your actions on Naboo have cast a long shadow upon the Roon Trade Organization, Mr. Vehn, and we shall work very hard to emerge from the darkness,? Tribune Kaitlyn Ypres announced.

    ?Have you anything to say?? Ypres asked.

    ?I am merely thankful that you have given me life,? Liam admitted, ?and I am terribly sorry for the sins I have brought upon my family. I only wanted what was best for my niece, the queen of Naboo. I never,? Liam paused, tears coming now, ?I never meant to hurt anyone. The galaxy will look kindly upon my actions in the years to come. They will realize that Eleanor Vehn is the best thing to ever happen to Naboo. Is that a crime? To improve a world, to make it stronger, to do what I felt was right??

    ?What you felt was right was the murdering of men and women who were in service to the people of Naboo. Perhaps a lifetime of reflection and contemplation will do you some good. You may leave, Liam Vehn, and may you spend the rest of your days living a quiet life,? Kaitlyn Ypres stated.

    Liam was escorted out of the building by armed guards. On his way past Eleanor?s position, he gazed into her eyes and sent a look of pity in her direction. It was returned by a very cold stare. Her uncle was dead to her now. There was no forgiving him for what he did. There was only shame, embarrassment, and an irrepressible hatred.

    [i]Theed, Naboo[/i]

    Eleanor had returned to Theed following her uncle?s trial and had determined that Cecil Avonlea, Thomas Avonlea, and Alastair McCullough, the local conspirators in the bombing plot, were to retire from any and all political life and never take a bellicose role against the government again.

    The day had been very trying for Eleanor and there was plenty of time left in the year to solidify her rule and reconnect the monarchy with the people.
  15. Trieste

    Trieste Force Ghost star 5

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

    ?They what,? Kerry said, her jaw hanging open after she?d finished. She was so shocked that she forgot to show shock.

    ?Liam Vehn was arrested for the Privy Council bombing and found guilty of such by the Board of Tribunes. He?s been put into essential exile by the Board and stripped of power,? Saldor Kann the Ithorian secretary said, ?Current reports from Republican Intelligence say that it is Ypres who has taken the reins of the Board. No formal succession has been announced.?

    Kerry threw a stylus skittering across her desk. ?Frak me.?

    ?Your niece the Queen is reportedly considering action against the Avonleas and their associates,? Kann added.

    ?So much for making the Senate think that the RTO was getting its act together,? Kerry muttered.

    ?All is not lost. Eleanor made a direct invitation to the Board of Tribunes. You no longer need Liam Vehn as an intermediary,? Kann pointed out.

    ?I am not convinced that Ypres can corrall the Board of Tribunes and get an offer on the table with the Senate,? Kerry said. She fell silent and cocked her head, looking at nothing in particular as she considered something.

    ?If I may suggest?? Saldor started.

    ?Send an invitation to Ypres forthwith. I want her to meet me on Nar Shaddaa. She?s not going to be welcome in the Vehns? box after what?s just happened here and it would not do for me to be seen with a recently convicted murderer,? Kerry said, ?I will instill in Ypres a sense of urgency regarding our trade deal in person.?

    ?If she has taken control in the RTO, she?ll have a number of issues on her plate. I would imagine she?ll clean out junior ministers and officials that were Vehn appointees to solidify her power base.?

    ?No she won?t. If she?s making a power play, she?ll need to acquire the trappings of the power. Nothing says that she?s in charge of the RTO like being on hand for the Nar Shaddaa Smugglers? rivalry game with the Miners. Especially when she can crow over the Smugglers? superiority next to me for the galaxy to see,? Kerry replied, ?She?ll come.?
  16. Vehn

    Vehn Jedi Master star 4

    Sep 14, 2009
    Six Boroughs Stadium, Nar Shaddaa

    Tribune Kaitlyn Ypres watched with sharp eyes as the Nar Shaddaa Smugglers dismantled the derelict Bakura Miners 30-19 in the annual Black and Blue Battle. She knew that Kerry Trieste was attending the game, most likely watching from the Vehn owner box. The only Vehn present in that box, however, was Verity who was keeping strong ties with the Triestes and doing her best to smooth things over in the wake of Liam Vehn?s trial and conviction.

    Ypres, and their family, had their own owner?s box at Six Boroughs Stadium. Arguably, it had a better view of the field than the one occupied by the Vehn family. The Ypres family was one of the key corporate sponsors of the Nar Shaddaa Smugglers and therefore was secretly in the running for ownership of the team. They knew that with Liam Vehn?s removal, there were few in the Vehn clan that would challenge for majority ownership in the team. Eleanor was too busy with Naboo, Verity was raising two kids at home, and Joaquin was too old and frail to be out in public as often as an owner of the Limmie franchise ought to be.

    That left only one contender: the sons of Rhia Grames. Ypres reviewed the file that her sources had compiled for her. Both boys had gone on to get advanced degrees in engineering, seeking employment on Rothana with Rothana Heavy Engineering, and had only shown interest in the sport of Limmie during wild drunken frat parties at Vertical City University. It was their way to prove they were one of the guys and get into an elite club of technocrats through entry level positions with some of the top corporations within the Roon Trade Organization. Unfortunately, the informant that Ypres had hired to do a little digging on the Grames brothers had revealed that one of them, the younger brother, was not into women at all, hated sports, and was more partial to relationships with men. That ruled him out despite his good looks.

    The other brother was the real deal. Lived and breathed Limmie. When he wasn?t strapped to his desk in the shipyards of Rothana he was involved, in some way or form, with the Nar Shaddaa Smugglers. Whether attending fundraisers or seeking photo opportunities with the cheerleaders, this older of the two sons of Rhia Grames, was determined to buy the team. But there was a problem. The older brother had no money. He was fresh out of school, stacked with loans, and although gainfully employed with Rothana Heavy Engineering, would not be able to net a significant surplus by the time the team was taken off the market.

    Kaitlyn Ypres knew exactly what to do to make sure that the older brother remained in his shipyard, away from the powerful world of professional sports. Inviting him to her box office, a treat for the debt plagued college graduate, Ypres had made the man a simple offer: Relinquish your interest in the team and your college debts will be paid off by a generous donation from the Ypres Foundation, Druckenwell?s premiere philanthropic operation. Remain interested in the team and there would be a corporate war unlike any the galaxy had seen.

    The son of Grames knew that this offer was one that he could not refuse. Signing off on a piece of flimsy, lawyers present, the young man relinquished all interest in trying to own the Nar Shaddaa Smugglers leaving Ypres the sole benefactor and figure in the running for a majority stake in the team.

    The game had concluded. Ypres made her way to the owner?s box, occupied by Kerry Trieste and family. Her eyes spotted Verity, awaking a tired May. The two looked worn out and were clearly not in the market for wearing the latest clothes from Coruscant. Kerry Trieste, on the other hand, looked as powerful and stunning as she ever did. Ypres would speak to her in a moment. Focusing her attention on Verity, Ypres made the first move like a bird of prey stalking a fish in a pond.

    ?Verity, how good to see you,? Kaitlyn announced extending her hand.

    ?Tribune Ypres, I am surprised to see you here. I did not know you attended the games,? Verity replied grasping her hand in a f
  17. Trieste

    Trieste Force Ghost star 5

    Apr 10, 2010
    ?I?m pleased that Republican-RTO relations are at the forefront of your mind, Tribune,? Kerry said. They had better be. Trieste had a strong feeling that their window of opportunity in the Senate was rapidly tightening. ?A ride to the spaceport would be welcome.? A quick glance at her Senatorial guard informed her protection that it had better not be a problem. No one objected and off they went.

    ?This business with Liam Vehn was of course shocking to all of us,? Kerry told Ypres once they were on board the Tribune?s shuttle., ?and the feeling in the Senate, as far as my friends there tell me, is that of unease. The RTO has never had the?continuity that the Republic has always projected, though we of course have had our disputes. The Senate prides itself on its solidity, though perhaps forgetting that this iteration of the Republic has only stood for well under a century.? Kerry turned the corners of her mouth up to show Ypres that she was well aware of the humorous nature of the pack of self-important legislators she had to corrall on a daily basis.

    ?I of course do not say this by way of disparagement. The RTO can react to things much more nimbly than the massive bureaucracy of the Republic on many issues. It is the way it is. But what you need to understand is that the Senate needs to feel that they?re getting into bed with a government that places the same value on continuity as they do. And to that end, I need to know right now who has officially replaced Vehn as Chairman.?
  18. Vehn

    Vehn Jedi Master star 4

    Sep 14, 2009
    ?I understand the importance of the Senate feeling comfortable with the RTO. We are an economic union that is continually in flux and that must be at an end. Liam Vehn?s downfall was not anticipated by those in power. He and his father did well in the past for our organization but we need new leadership on the eve of an historic trade deal with the Republic. My family can provide that leadership. We can be the successors to the Vehn legacy and carry forth their ideals into this new age,? Ypres responded.

    The shuttle was approaching the spaceport.

    ?I have officially been confirmed as the next Chairman of the RTO. I will lead with a fair and balanced hand. We are interested in boosting our economic interests, not our political or military outlets. After the disaster on Lannik it would be nearly impossible to rally the people of the RTO to support another war, unless, it were in conjunction with an effort from the Republic. I only see peace on the horizon, though, and that is enough for me. A trade deal with the Republic would go far to encouraging smart investments and bolstering our economies as they struggle through this difficult time,? Ypres said.

    The shuttle stopped.

    Ypres departed the craft first. Turning to look at Kerry, she wanted to let her know that there could be trust. ?Only my actions will ever prove to you that you can trust me. I was against the Lannik conflict. It was bad for business. Help me push this trade deal through, Chancellor, and I shall make it more than worth your while. I will work hard to make sure that the RTO is a stable, economically strong collection of planets. Imagine, your southern border in space that has traditionally been wild, remote, and untamed, now working in conjunction with the Republic for a better galaxy. I have a dream for this area of the galaxy. A dream of peace and prosperity. I only need you to help make this dream a reality. You are a great woman. You could be even greater still by shoring up this trade agreement between our two governments. I have done everything in my power to make this succeed. I speak for the Board of Tribunes when I say that our hopes lie with you,? Ypres stated.
  19. Trieste

    Trieste Force Ghost star 5

    Apr 10, 2010
    Kerry stepped out of the shuttle and extended her hand to Ypres. ?Come to Coruscant with draft terms of the trade agreement we both so badly want. I will muster the appropriate Senators to negotiate terms. Let?s do this.?

    The pair shook.

    ?Together,? Kerry finished.

    Business concluded, she boarded her shuttle. Her destination was not Coruscant, but rather Commenor. There was another nasty piece of business brewing in the galaxy that Kerry needed to attend to.

    ?Beings say that we shouldn?t take sports seriously, that they are just a distraction from the real issues facing the galaxy,? Kerry Trieste said, addressing the press and selected government officials from Commenor, one of the many diverse planets of the Republic, ?but sports are a reflection of who we are as a society, of what we value. Perhaps I am somewhat biased in this manner, as someone who owns a professional Limmie team as well as a former collegiate athlete, but I believe that sports can highlight what?s important to us, to the galaxy.

    ?Recently questions regarding speciesism have been raised in connection with the Bakura Miners and by extension me. These are questions that need to be answered in a reasoned, calm manner. Far too often we resort to rhetoric or we simply fail to answer the hard questions when presented with the issue of speciesism. Today, at least, I shall not.

    ?As a galactically-elected official, I think that my record speaks for itself. I am not a xenophobe, a Human High adherent, or a speciesist. End of discussion. But recent accusations and questions do raise an issue of whether we allow an implicit speciesism in the Republic today. It is true that the Bakura Miners are, all Human. Technically, they are not as Hapans consider themselves Near Humans, but, at the risk of offending the Queen Mother and the Consortium, for all intents and purposes they are indeed Humans. The critics and detractors have a point. The absence of non-Humans on the Miners does send a wrong message. However, I say that simply having players who are non-Human for the sake of sending a message is just as wrong. Tokenism is just as insidious as speciesism. It undermines the achievements of all species to take someone because of their species just as much as denying them opportunity because of it.

    ?I have never been a specist. I thank the Force that I am not. But the voices that have called for the eradication of speciesim are right. That is why I stand here today on Commenor, a thriving member world of the Republic with a diverse population of many species, to say that it is time for me to lead from the front as Chancellor. There never has been any prohibition in the Bakura Miners organization against signing or scouting non-Human players during my tenure as owner. I have, however, endorsed the ?go local? strategy of recruiting. Due to Bakura?s predominantly Human population, that has resulted in all-Human rosters. Though the Miners will remain rooted in Bakuran society and draw upon Bak10 schools extensively, I will invest the necessary financial resources to enable team scouts to go further afield in their activites and open new talent pipelines, irrespective of whether or not that talent is Human or not.

    ?But my leadership cannot stop there by virtue of my permission. I am directing the Justice Department to increase its vigilance and investigations of species-based discrimination in the Republic that violates existing law. That law is strong and clear. It is time for the Republic to be the responsible stewards of society that we are expected to be.

    ?Perhaps I fight a losing battle, but it is a battle worth fighting, and one that I would be glad to lose if I should be on the right side of it. Maker keep the Republic.?>
  20. Vehn

    Vehn Jedi Master star 4

    Sep 14, 2009

    Chairman Kaitlyn Ypres, newly minted leader of the Roon Trade Organization, arrived on Coruscant a month after talking with Kerry Trieste with an entourage of tribunes and security figures. She was dressed in a well cut business suit, her hair reflecting her corporate upbringing, and promptly entered the Senate building with a datapad in hand containing a draft proposal for the pending trade agreement with the Republic.
    Today would be the signing of an historic accord.

    [i]Theed, Naboo[/i]

    There had been little to smile about in recent weeks as Eleanor Vehn was starting to put in another late night at Theed Palace. Her uncle, Liam Vehn, had been convicted of bombing the Privy Council and was now living in exile at the family home of Tesserone on Roon. In addition to that headache, the people whom she thought that she could trust to run affairs on Naboo, the powerful Avonlea family, had disgraced themselves by also being complicit in the plot to help Eleanor?s rise to power.

    Eleanor felt estranged from her family, had few friends she could trust, and wondered just how she was going to form a cohesive government with so many crucial positions going unfilled. Adding to the pressures of running a planet was the voice of a growing majority of people to hold open elections for all positions of government including the monarchy. Failure to comply with their demands could potentially throw Naboo into a devastating civil war, something Eleanor wanted to avoid at all costs. She had studied the Galactic Civil War and spent a considerable amount of time looking into the Bakuran Civil War that had taken countless scores of lives and nearly embroiled the Roon Trade Organization under one time chairman Salvadore Mithras in a galactic conflict.

    Personally, Eleanor felt like she had been hit by a train. She was a young teenager, going through all of the physical changes that accompanied such a transformation, and the figurative crown that rested on her head had grown heavy as of late. She wanted to cut loose, wanted to do what other girls her age did when Theed?s nightlife sprang into existence every evening. The young queen had surrounded herself with young handmaidens who would age with her into a new era for Naboo and although most of them were respectable, a few, including her closest friend, had a reputation for doing the daring.

    That one friend, and closest confidant, had just entered Eleanor?s private chambers dressed for a night out. Her official name was Lady Savannah Clearwater, but Eleanor and other close friends always called her Savvy. She was pretty, a year or two older than Eleanor, and had been Eleanor?s friend since her formal education as a child.


    ?You look troubled Ellie, what?s going on?? Savannah asked using the very personal childhood nickname of the queen.

    Sighing, the queen gazed at the mirror in front of her and groaned, ?Family problems and concerns about the stability of my reign.?

    ?Heavy,? Savannah replied as she sat down on the queen?s bed. ?You know what you need??


    ?A night out with the handmaidens, we?re going to one of our local hangouts. Wanna come? They?ve got some thumping music and you?re bound to have a good time, might meet some cute guy,? Savannah giggled.

    ?Take a night off??

    ?Yeah, why not??

    ?I?ve got a planet to run that?s why not, besides, what if the media found out, I would be ruined,? Eleanor grumbled.

    ?Oh, frak the media, let?s go have some fun!? Savannah pressed.

    Eleanor considered how down she had been lately. Knew her handmaidens, trusted them, recognized that nothing would happen to her that she did not approve of and after weighing all the options nodded her head in agreement.

    ?So, you gonna come??

    ?You got it, Savvy,? Eleanor replied.

    ?Great, I?ve got just the dress for you,? Savannah said with a grin.

    Minutes later, Eleanor was looking fit for a night on the town. Using one of the lesser known exits out of Theed Palace,
    Eleanor, Savannah, and the other handmaidens headed straight to th>
  21. Trieste

    Trieste Force Ghost star 5

    Apr 10, 2010
    Bakuran Senate Offices, Salis D'aar, Bakura

    "And to what do I owe this unexpected pleasure, Mr. Trieste?" the deep voice of Senator Silas Madsen of Arcterra intoned as he received Ronan Trieste, head of the powerful Eden Banking Group, into his office. In truth, the visit was not entirely unexpected. Trieste had contacted Madsen's office and requested a brief sitdown in advance, knowing that the Senator kept a fairly busy schedule--which included nightly flights back to his home in Blackbranch to see his adopted daughter. Unlike so many of his peers, Madsen declined to keep a Salis D'aar residence and travel at personal expense to and from the capital on a daily basis as required by business. "Drink?" Madsen suggested before Ronan could reply, lifting a tumbler by way of example, "You haven't become such a Denonian as to forget your well-watered roots."

    "Never on the company time, Senator," Ronan said with a smile that politely declined.

    "As you wish," Madsen said, declining to pour a drink for himself, "Would this be because you come bearing a request from the Chancellor, who understandably would not have time for a small fish like myself, our previous ties notwithstanding." Madsen stood as a Fianna Fail Senator, Kerry's old party, in a generally conservative district. His political opinions were appropriately moderate, but Madsen's initial election was thanks to a strong endorsement from Kerry Trieste to thank Madsen for his clandestine support of the Federal cause during the Civil War from his position deep in the heart of Maple territory.

    "I do not come on the business of the Noble House," Ronan said, "When I said company time, I meant it literally."

    "And what interest does the powerful Eden Banking Group have in me?" Silas asked with interest and some surprise, taking a seat behind his desk.

    "One of mutual gain," Ronan said, "I have long aspired to redomicile the Eden Banking Group to Bakura. I have long taken an interest in the prosperity of the former Maple counties--"

    "For which much of the planet thanks you," Madsen interjected.

    "--especially Nouvelle Orleans. I would like to headquarters Eden there, increasing Marielle's and Bakura's corporate tax collections exponentially," Ronan continued, "The problem is that Bakura's corporate tax structure makes it prohibitively expensive to do so."

    "The Prime Minister would love nothing more than to lower taxes across the board. Speak with him. His legislative leadership will force the issue, which my colleagues oppose on grounds of a balanced budget, to a vote. I, for one, will stand with the Unionists on this issue, which matters little due to their majority in the Senate," Madsen said.

    "Unfortunately, there is something of a family...stigma regarding working with the Unionists," Ronan idly remarked.

    "I can't imagine where such a thing would come from," Madsen said, feigning disbelief.

    "Indeed," Ronan said dryly, "Few of your colleagues would agree to champion such a cause. However, if a being of reason in the party could get Fianna Fail's name attached to giving the Unionists what they already want, think of what it would do for the party...and that being."

    "So a corporate tax decrease enables Eden to come to Bakura, but increases the profits for every other business. A wash for the government..."

    "...but a great boon to citizens."

    "This is precisely the sort of thing that a sensible government like ours could never abide," Madsen said, "Precisely why I should undertake to do it, don't you think?"

    Ronan smiled. "Like I said, a being of reason."

    "Some of my colleagues will want guarantees," Silas said.

    "Send them to me. The Noble House's word is good."

    "The Taoiseach's, always. But yours?"

    "Who do you think the Taoiseach trusts with her money?"

    "Good enough for me," Madsen said.

    They shook on the deal.
  22. Trieste

    Trieste Force Ghost star 5

    Apr 10, 2010

    [link=]Mandy Syfred looked at herself in the mirror and sighed.[/link]

    ?I?m old now, aren?t I, Ronan?? she said with dismay.

    ?No older than me,? Ronan assured her.

    ?I haven?t toured in years, I haven?t cut an album in the same time?I suppose this is what getting old is, isn?t it?? Mandy frowned.

    ?You forgot the two sons and daughter in there,? Ronan said as he came up behind his wife and put his arms around her.

    ?I saw in the news today that Madsen has introduced the resolution to the Bakuran Senate. Fianna Fail will never be able to object with one of their own sponsoring the bill,? Mandy said.

    ?They could, but they won?t. We?ll be home soon, dear,? Ronan promised.

    ?I?m home with you.?

    [i]Bakura Fleet Academy, Marielle, Bakura[/i]

    Sierra Westenra traipsed behind her mother across the Academy campus. She was a golden skinned delight in her dress. Her straight-laced mother knew it too. It was gameday at the Academy and of course the Commandant would attend. The Admiral, after all, had played for the Ensigns in her own day at the Academy.

    ?Do try to skip a little less,? Fiona Westenra said with a sigh.

    ?I will not,? Sierra replied seriously?perhaps incongruently with her behavior.

    ?I would rather you did not taunt the male ensigns so blatantly. It sets a bad precedent for the Commandant?s daughter to tease them.?

    ?Then you should make it not be sunny. I?d be less happy then,? Sierra said, ?They do have climate control you know.?

    ?As if I could ever make you less happy if I wanted to,? Fiona said. There was even the hint of a smile in the corners of her mouth. She reflected that her daughter had taken to living under a blue sky rather well.

    [i]Tesserone, Roon[/i]

    ?I hate to say it, but the trip to Bakura did her good,? Verity Vehn admitted.

    ?Because you hate admitting Kerry was right,? Oisin said.

    ?Yes. And as new owner of the Smugglers I believe I?m morally and legally obligated to dislike her,? Verity said, ?With a passion.?

    ?I hope it won?t extend to May. I do believe that my family has got their hooks into her. If she could believe in the Miners after last season, then she?s lost to the cause,? Oisin said.

    ?Why you say that as if you were a member of the Crew yourself,? Verity said with a smile.

    ?The things I do for love,? Oisin replied before kissing his wife.

    [i]Salis D?aar, Bakura[/i]

    ?I?m with your father on this one,? Regan said firmly.

    ?You?re with him, or you agree with him?? Quentin said in frustration.

    ?I agree with him,? Regan said, ?though he?s clearly been teaching you something about making oral arguments if you picked up on that nuance at the age of 11.?

    ?Quentin?s smarter than you give him credit for my dear,? Atticus said, ?but consider this an exercise in power. We have it and you don?t so you?re going to have to live with it.? He patted his daughter on the head.

    ?Everybody else has their own comm at school,? Quentin groused.

    ?Do I have to make the jumping off a cliff rebuttal?? Regan asked.

    ?No, I think we can spare him that indignity, dear,? Atticus said, ?He?s suffered enough for one day.?

    ?It?s not fair. None of my friends have to beat two lawyers when [i]they[/i] argue with their parents,? Quentin mumbled as he left the living room.

    ?He has a point,? Regan said, ?We really are a terrible team together.?

    ?Terribly wonderful,? Atticus said, squeezing his wife?s shoulder.

    [i]Gesco City, Bakura[/i]

    ?I?ll deal with it at the Board meeting tomorrow,? Siona said into her comm, ?I just can?t deal with it right now.?

    ?But the filing deadline is tomorrow??

    ?Deal with it. I?m in the middle of something important,? Siona shot back to the CFO of one of the companies of which she was a Director. She turned off her comm and threw it into her purse. ?Honey, are you ready yet??

    ?Almost!? Ginnifer said from inside the changing room.

    ?You don?t have to look perfect in it. They have seamstresses for a reason,? Siona said.

    ?Coming! Coming!? The brunette stepped out in a light blue evening gown. ?So??

  23. Trieste

    Trieste Force Ghost star 5

    Apr 10, 2010
    Galactic Seante, Coruscant

    ??and this trade agreement will bring many benefits to the Republic. New markets opened up to our finished goods, without having to battle through protective tariffs. Anyone in this chamber who asserts the commercial superiority of the Republic cannot argue against the benefits of reciprocal free trade with the RTO.?

    Kerry Trieste sat in the Chancellor?s podium. Ypres offer, essentially a simple one but the best ones usually were, was being debated. She?d returned to the RTO to let the Senate do its usual bickering and bantering. The Tribunes had approved the trade agreement. Ratification by the Senate was the only thing needed now. The Chancellor intended to push it through. Now was the moment for it.

    ?Chancellor,? came the deep, but quiet, tones of Saldor Kann. He had ascended to the podium to whisper in the Chancellor?s ear.

    ?Yes?? she asked, bending her head. She assumed he wouldn?t be interrupting if it wasn?t important. She was right.

    ?Chancellor, your brother Conn has been killed in Salis D?aar,? the Ithorian said.

    Kerry didn?t move. She didn?t blink. She continued to watch the Senator from Malastare.

    ?The killer has been apprehended by Salis D?aar Police. Details are not yet public, but they are compiling a file as a courtesy now,? Kann continued after a moment?s pause. He stopped again. Kerry had not yet said anything. ?What would you like to do?? was the question he eventually asked.

    The Chancellor straightened and sat in her place at the podium. She remained there for nine minutes. What Kerry Trieste thought during that time she did not share with anyone else.

    At the end of that time, Trieste leaned over to Kann. ?Instruct Senator El?kabaz to assume the chair for the remainder of the debate. Call the House together at Kilmainham Brook. Everyone, including the cousins. Leave the Vehns out of it. They have had their share of tragedy.?

    Supreme Chancellor Kerry Trieste left the podium.

    [i]Kilmainham Brook, Prytis, Bakura[/i]

    [link=]The Noble House stood clustered around the tree that had been planted shortly after Kerry had been born.[/link] It had been planted as a quiet memorial by Fionn and Jane Trieste to his parents, Lennon and Maeve, casualties of the Sith occupation of Bakura. The ashes of those two had fed the roots of the tree, as had those of Fionn?s cousin Aine, and those of Kerry?s husband Mihal. Now a mound of dirt indicated where the ashes of Conn Trieste, first son of Fionn and Jane, were interred.

    As Taoiseach it fell to Kerry to say something. At the funeral she had deferred to Nessa, as was right. But instinctually Kerry knew that Nessa couldn?t handle this final goodbye.

    ?You know Conn, I figured you probably would be the last of us to go,? Kerry said, ?mainly because I you would have wanted to get six wakes out of the deal and all that free liquor.? People laughed because it was true. ?Of all of us, you came the furthest. You really did. Hell, I know Mom and Dad never expected you to live past 26 with the way that you partied back in the day. But you did so much with your life. A tenured professor at UBSD, six published books, a beautiful wife, two kids?if that?s not making it I don?t know what is. You were a good brother, Conn. A frakking good brother and a better husband and father. Now, excuse us, but we?ve got a lot of alcohol that we know you?d hate to think of as not being enjoyed on your account.?

    The Triestes somberly moved back to the house, though Nessarose, her daughter Elphaba, and her son Alec stood under the tree for some time more. Kerry watched from a distance.

    ?Despite the fact it?s our memorial, it?s lonely under the branches of that tree, Saldor,? Kerry said.

    The Ithorian nodded. ?I find it interesting your family has such a strong association with the land. It is almost Ithorian in nature.?

    ?I?d like to think sentient beings share their best values across species,? Kerry said.

    ?A comforting thought.?

    ?There?s never a good time for a brother to die, but Conn did pick a frakkin>
  24. Vehn

    Vehn Jedi Master star 4

    Sep 14, 2009
    Nime, Roon

    The office of the Chairman of the RTO had a splendid view of the rapidly developing city of Nime. Nime had benefited greatly as the capital of the booming trade organization and had nearly tripled its population since the formation of the economic union nearly twenty years earlier. The office was fairly large, dominated by electronic archives and several holographic displays carrying information about the galactic stock markets and other necessary economic items. Off to one side of the office, through a doorway, was a comfortable sized living quarters that the chairman could use during particularly busy periods of administrating the RTO. A place that was private and away from the ever present employees that shuffled in and out of the office on a daily basis.

    Kaitlyn stretched and yawned. Her pale skin reflecting the morning light sifting in through the window. She relaxed into her pillow and stared at the ceiling enjoying a peaceful moment. That peaceful moment was interrupted when her datapad vibrated on a nearby nightstand. Reaching over, she saw that she had a new message.

    Day is beginning early Ypres thought as she read the message.

    ?Frak,? she breathed as she suddenly sat up in bed, the sheet slipping away from her exposed form. ?Frak, frak, frak!?

    ?What is it?? A male voice inquired next to her.

    ?Conn Trieste, a brother to the Chancellor, has just been killed in Salis D?aar. This could put our trade deal on the rocks
    for awhile. Great timing, frak it all! I knew I should have acted sooner!? Kaitlyn moaned.

    ?Relax, Katie,? the man said. ?This deal is still going to go through. Kerry wouldn?t scuttle something so important.
    She?ll probably leave the pushing of the deal through the Senate with a subordinate. Everything is still under control.
    You?ve got to trust me on this.?

    ?What about Conn? Should we offer our help??

    ?If they wanted our help they would?ve asked for it by now. Really, you?ve got to relax,? the man suggested.

    ?Relax? This deal is one of the most important transactions I?ve ever had to make in my entire life! How can I relax when the economic future of the RTO is at stake?? Kaitlyn cried out.

    ?Just let it go and hope for the best. Besides, there?s no way that trade proposal isn?t going to pass. The offer is simply too good to let it fall by the wayside. Everyone benefits and you come out looking like a champion,? the man said stroking Ypres? back with his fingers.

    Kaitlyn let out a sigh. She had been stressed about this deal for quite some time. A few more hours, or days, would not hurt her any.

    ?Did you ever have to deal with the Republic??

    ?On more than one occasion, in fact, we nearly came to a war with them at one point,? the man revealed.

    ?You nearly went to war with the Republic??

    ?You heard me correctly. There was this guy, Salvadore Mithras, he was in power for a little bit during a test phase of electoral government within the RTO. Let?s just say the experiment failed and a potential war with the Republic was averted,? the man said.

    ?Oh, I remember now, you and your wife helped stop the conflict, right?? Ypres whispered as she rolled over onto her stomach and looked into her lover?s eyes.

    ?Ex-wife,? the man reminded her.

    ?Whatever. You saved the day and saved the RTO, but when it mattered most, Liam, you couldn?t even save yourself,? Kaitlyn purred.

    ?So what about the two of us, we seem to do well together,? Liam said.

    ?You?re asking if I find a man who is in his early forties attractive and I think you want to know if I find this relationship to be creepy or not??

    ?Well, yeah.?

    ?We?ve been dating for nearly two years, Liam. You are a very good looking man for your age and most of the time you?re a great guy, though, sometimes, you really frak things up, like blowing up the Privy Council.?

    ?Will you never let me live that one down??

    ?No,? Kaitlyn responded as she gingerly kissed Liam on the lips. ?But you?ve paid your price for the crime.?

    ?Have I??

    ?I?ll say so,? Kaitlyn giggled. ?Can I ask you something??

    ?Yeah, anything.?

    ?Do you
  25. Trieste

    Trieste Force Ghost star 5

    Apr 10, 2010
    Chancellor's Office, Galactic Senate, Coruscant

    With Conn's remains interred in the soil of the home where he had grown up, Kerry had left forthwith for Coruscant. She could have justified remaining for a few more days, but she couldn't justify leaving the RTO-Republic trade agreement untended. The reasons were not entirely political. This was the great debt that she owed to the Vehn family for helping her smash the nebulous Elder Star Society--and the Noble House paid its debts in full. She had realized very early on that as Prime Minister of Bakura she could have never gotten this trade deal through. Only as Chancellor could Kerry marshal the political forces needed to make this trade agreement pass. It wasn't the only reason Kerry had sought the office--she was not so vain as to deny her own vanity in the pursuit--but it was a reason nonetheless.

    In the last three years and change of presiding over the Senate, Kerry Trieste knew its powerbrokers well. The truth was that one only needed to persuade the right Senators to get something done--not half the Senate. The right Senators who had connections and friendships would influence people down the line and that turned into half the Senate. As a result ever since Kerry's return she had been personally imploring these Senators. "The time is now," was the message she gave. Some of them she bargained with. "It would be a shame to have future worthy legislative efforts be turned down because regional interests outweighed those of the Republic," Kerry told those Senators. Others she flat out threatened. "If you hold this up, you won't be able to get elected as a garbage collector when I'm done with you," she told the most obtuse.

    The votes were, predictably, coming into line--more or less willingly.

    After the Senator from Kuat--one of the friendlier meetings--departed, Saldor Kann came in. Kerry had asked for an update on his efforts. She sat back in her chair and listened with steepled fingers.

    "The accused is one Srin Andloinne. Human, female, aged 38 standard years according to records on Bakura, her homeworld," Kann reported succinctly, "According to SDPD reports, which they have provided to this office as a courtesy, she was a resident of Marielle. Miss Andloinne alleges that in 252 she was involved in a romantic relationship with your brother, which was eventually terminated by him. According to SDPD, they strongly believe based on the behavior of Miss Andloinne after the murder and accounts given by those that knew Miss Andloinne that she has recently suffered some sort of psychotic break that resulted in her actions. That is the preliminary opinion of the staff psychologist from the SDPD that evaluated Miss Andloinne."

    "I don't think we need to guess what defense will be offered," Kerry said.

    "It seems quite likely," Kann admitted.

    "Did she sleep with Conn?"

    "There is no corroborating evidence at this time beyond some messages that were saved on her datapad," Saldor said, "Unfortunately, only your brother would have been able to refute her story and he can't now."

    "And his trysts were too numerous to keep track of," Kerry said. She drummed her fingers on her desk. "Did you contact Mott?"

    "He extended his condolences," Kann said.


    "He said the news shocked him. He'd heard nothing about it."

    "Has he heard about anything else?" Kerry asked with a gentle hint of suggestion.

    "To learn that, I don't think I should be talking to Oren Mott. It's well known in certain circles that you and he understanding. It limits the information that might come his way."

    "So you would think, but quite often that is not the case. Go to Corellia. See him in person. If need be, tell them the trade agreement is your reason for business. Mott covers his bases. He'll be watching for ways his enemies can get to him and that includes through me."

    "As you wish, Chancellor. Oh, and one more thing. A marriage license was filed in Nime the other day. I thought you might want to be aware of the fact it was for Liam Vehn and Chairman Ypres," Saldor said casually.