Star Wars THE GALAXY AT WAR PART IV: PRISONER OF CORUSCANT

Discussion in 'Role Playing Forum' started by pashatemur, Nov 5, 2010.

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  1. Ominous Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Jul 30, 2004
    star 4
    IC: General Torian
    Location: Alliance Rebel Base, Yavin IV


    As Yueh unleashed his fury on the Jedi, Torian thought to himself that the man needed a good, old fashion operation where they would kick butt and take names. The Alliance General had a gaffey stick the size of an Endor tree securely in his rear at this meeting. It was surprising he could stay seated for so long.

    Admiral Ackbar broke the tension in the room which was becoming thicker than an ice storm on Hoth. Torian nodded in agreement with the Admiral, and why shouldn?t he? After all he was married to a Jedi. There wasn?t a better alliance than that! Mon Mothma followed up the Admiral from Dac.

    ?I for one welcome the Jedi?s aid, and if the General has in mind sending the good Jedi along with us to Coruscant, then I for one am all for it?however, there is one concern,? she furthered now with a concerned and furrowed brow. ?Is there any way his presence, as a Jedi, can be detected by another force-user?? she queried with intrigue.

    Torian looked over at his wife for the answer, but before she spoke he had to say it. ?No more than a human can disguise a fart in a space cruiser, but I believe we should ask our Jedi friends. Is there a danger he could be sniffed out by another Force-user??

    Biggs, normally quiet at these meetings as he was not a full-member of the Council and only a member in an advisory capacity, was also looking upon the whole thing with interest and he could not hide a grin:

    ?The more the merrier I say,? he interjected with a mischievous tone. ?Jedi can handle themselves pretty well,? he continued of course referring to a mission to his homeworld of Tatooine where an aged jedi almost single-handedly subdued a troop of the fearsome Sandpeople.

    ?Bah, whatever,? General Yeuh stated dejectedly as he gave up the point as he looked askew at the two Jedi now interposing themselves into the meeting.


    Torian turned back to the cantankerous General Yueh. ?I think you and I should go out on our own mission. You need some fresh air and Imperial butts to kick.?

    TAG: Everyone at the meeting.
  2. DARTH_GOLLUMSMEAGOL Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Sep 20, 2003
    star 5
    OOC: Well damn I see I have ruffled a few feathers......and only my second post back :p That was not my intent Perhaps I misread a former post but I thought that this room was a mere three floor elevator ride below the command center, which as a Master (though admittedly not on any "ruling" council) I thought (maybe falsely) that I would have access to at least the command center. I DID post that the guards at the elevator WERE at their posts and DID stop me at first until Torian acknowledged me and indeed said he was in need of me services. I tried to play that as lightly as possible so if I angered or offended anyone please accept my apologies :). On a lighter note.....who was it that started putting an "o" in my last name??
    P.S. Please understand that my response is in the fun of role playing and not meant as a personal snipe at anyone :)


    IC: Ben
    Location: Conference room, Yavin

    Ben felt the tension right away and realized that he may have overstepped his bounds in crashing this party. General Yeuh seemed to be the most perturbed. As soon as Ben was finished the good General interjected his own thoughts on what the Master Jedi had just relayed to the Members of the Council.

    ?General Torian is correct, you aren?t a member of this council, Master Jedi,? Ben could tell he was just getting warmed up. ?As far as your psychic rambling goes, I don?t understand any of it.? Then with a sarcastic smirk, he continued, ?I?m surprised that with your clairvoyance you weren?t able to divine the fact that Senator Palpatine would turn on the Jedi as he did those long years ago, or you weren?t able to predict that someone would plant an incendiary bomb on the purloined Jedi cruiser.? Perhaps the General did not realize that it was Ben's own wife that had perished when the bomb had gone off, that fact alone allowed Ben to stay calm enough not to react harshly to the comment. However General Yeuh seemed to be one of those people that liked to step up to the line and then tiptoe back and forth across it. ?Perhaps you should leave your esoteric visions to the meeting amongst your Jedi brethren and leave the fighting to the Alliance, and perhaps next times also please remember that doors are sometimes closed for a reason.?

    General Ackbar immediately interjected. ?General, please, you go to far sometimes,I understand your concerns but you must remember the Jedi are not our guests, they are now our allies and as such we must and will use them in any manner that aids our cause,?

    Ben nodded his thanks to Ackbar. He then turned to General Yeuh to make his response.

    "Perhaps the good General was recently swimming and still has a bit of water in his ears? I believe I began what I said a moment ago by stating that I was unaware of the protocol, as such then I would obviously NOT be apart of the council, for if I was I would certainly KNOW the protocol, yes?" Ben gave his own sarcastic smirk and continued. "As far as my "psychic ramblings" goes, I have never, nor will I ever claim to be a psychic, as I stated, sometimes the force shows me things. This gift is not like a light saber that I can turn on and off at the push of a button. Also if the General knew anything past the barrel of his rifle he would know that I was not WITH the Jedi order when order 66 was given. I did not come to join the order until much later." Ben stopped for a second and look directly into the General's eyes. " I want to make sure I have your complete attention for this next part. My WIFE was in that blast and gave her life to save many others, you make light of that situation again and we will have words."

    Ben stopped for a second to gather his energy and calm down. "Perhaps the General would rather the Jedi went our separate way and did NOT ally ourselves with the Alliance? Not that I have any say in that matter nor would I WANT to split from the Alliance but someone that is in such a high position should perhaps learned to bridle their tongue before making such brash statements."

    Mon Mothma took the opportunity of the silence to interject her own thoughts. “I for one welcome the Jedi’s aid, and if the General has in mind sending the good Jedi along with us to Coruscant, then I for one am all for it...however, there is one concern,” Her brow furrowed at this point. “Is there any way his presence, as a Jedi, can be detected by another force-user?”

    Torian seemingly deciding to lighten the situation a bit said “No more than a human can disguise a fart in a space cruiser, but I believe we should ask our Jedi friends. Is there a danger he could be sniffed out by another Force-user?”

    Ben started to say something but was beaten to the punch by a very zealous Biggs. “The more the merrier I say. Jedi can handle themselves pretty well,”

    "Bah, Whatever" Said General Yeuh, looking sideways at the two Jedi. to which Torian replied “I think you and I should go out on our own mission. You need some fresh air and Imperial butts to kick.”

    Ben however now answered the question posed by Mon Mothma. "Yes I am afraid it is very possible that another force user, especially one as powerful as Vader, could feel our presence. Mine more so due to our sordid history with one another and the fact that he would probably like nothing better than to slowly choke the life from me. I was after all the one that betrayed him and allowed Luke to safely escape his grasp when I first joined the Jedi."

    Tag: All at the "party"
    Last edited by Corellian_Outrider, Apr 21, 2017
  3. pashatemur Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Jun 21, 2004
    star 4
    OOC: This is a joint post authored by Pashatemur and the MaidofOrleans. I am posting on MOO's behalf as her computer is conversing with Mars!

    IC:Hsur Hgubmil & Company
    HoloNetNews Office Coruscant

    The last few minutes of the biography of Darth Vader, the once Jedi General, Anakin Skywalker and now soon to be “Emperor” were winding to a close. Hsur would make Skywalker Emperor. He’d managed to pull Phomas Caime out of mothballs at the 11th hour to get up the now ending biography. Soon, Hgubmil himself would appear ‘live’ to the billions watching across the galaxy.

    Was Hsur nervous? Not in the least; for he had appeared a thousand times before to the citizens of the galaxy, relaying all that was newsworthy to them through the years' bulletins of joy, tragedy, heartache and triumph. As his image was beamed to the denizens of the galaxy, each felt the caster was speaking directly to them. It seemed his eyes met theirs and the words he spoke had the ring of truth. This was Hgubmil’s talent: personable, serious, even passionate and above all, unrelentingly determined – whatever it took to get the story, right down to creating just the right buzz around his own legend or that of others.

    As he waited, Hsur smiled to himself, recalling the moments leading up to his interview with the daunting presence that was the Imperial Executor and Re of Ursa, the handsome but redoubtable, Lord Vader.

    Along with his capable assistant , the delectable Ms Shilling, Hgubmil had wormed his way into the Lord Executor’s presence. He was recognized of course - his face and unmistakable voice was his entry pass. Vader was notorious for eschewing the journalists’ holo-cams and the glittergads, but Hgubmil’s cache was nothing to be dismissed. He’d brought down the mighty just as he’d elevated the lowly. Still, even Hsur had to admit, it was probably a happy coincidence that he’d gotten his foot in that door. Yet, recognizing and seizing opportunity in itself took grit and raw talent and THAT, Hsur had in abundance.

    Ensconced with the soon to be new Emperor was that oily snake, better known as Grand Vizier Sate Pestage. From his vantage point, Hsur studied the two men who had served the late Palpatine I and he listened carefully to this battle of cleverly crafted words...

    Pestage clucked and then smiling again, hands clasped before him over his chest, he bowed. “So good of you to spare me the time in the lift, my ...eh...Emperor. I do hope you take my words to heart.”

    “I have, Vizier,” said Anakin as discretely as possible, his voice low and quiet. Bold action was what Pestage advocated, a sweep of the halls of power, but that would incite those who stood poised for a coup to throw their own care to the wind and act precipitously. It was better to keep them poised. Pestage had to know how difficult it was for the Executor to restrain himself, to wait like this and not, as the Vizier advised, make an immediate strike against those suspected of treason.

    “And I am considering them now. While I do, you will see to the continued smooth running of the existing government. This emergency has everyone distracted, and so it should. Best to keep them busy. As far as we know, the threat is still in effect. I shall rely on you,” the young Vader added finally and pointedly.

    “Your Majesty,” said Sate with a bow, but it was palpable the disagreement between the two.

    Interesting to watch those two power brokers, one an older man of considerable political experience and intrigue and nominally in line to succeed Palpatine I and the other, a man of varied past, more a war hero than a man of state, clearly used to command, but a warrior monk, and one of a mystic and outlawed band. Now it was he who was taking the throne and the Grand Vizier seemed nonplussed. Now how was that, wondered Hsur, tapping his lips?

    Sate Pestage had advanced and signaled the guard to detain poor Ms. Shilling when she and Hsur had entered Lord Vader’s office, but Vader, coming round his surprisingly spare desk, rasped quickly, "I wonder if you would attend the session, Vizier." It was clear by the tone of his voice it was a command and not a gentle invitation.

    It had amused and made Hsur vaguely uncomfortable to see the Vizier countermanded. Pestage’s solicitous smile didn’t camouflage his oily confirmation.

    “Yes, of course. I’ll be there without fail, you can count on it, Your Majesty,” said Pestage, who standing near Lord Vader, leaned in close so that his further words were nearly imperceptible to others. "I should take my leave. There is still much to coordinate with regard to insuring the government functions, but, of course, Lord... Your Majesty, if you require it..." said the Vizier gesturing, but Hsur swore he heard the man hiss, "...It's your funeral,” before saying, “You ask for my counsel; you will get little for your kindly charade. Mark me, this gossip monger will play you out and then you will have to stamp him out in the public square!"

    Perhaps it was the Vizier’s breath that seemed so to aggravate the Executor. The elder man had clearly gone too far into Vader’s personal space. Maybe the Vizier’s breath aggravated the burns that shown glistening red on the warrior’s neck and made his clearly raw skin crawl, so near was Pestage’s whispering. “Yes...as you say. Take your leave, Your Excellency,” said Skywalker, his head bowed and nodding. Perhaps it was easy to back peddle, when he wanted nothing more than to be out of Pestage’s sphere and certainly away from the smell of his foul breath.

    Ms. Shilling took offense at the Vizier’s insult and not so veiled threat towards Hgubmil, but wisely she kept her eyes away from the personage known as Palpatine’s right hand.

    /Gossip monger...me?/ Inwardly, Hgubmil smirked at the barb directed towards him by Palpatine’s counselor. / It would seem to me you would be the one who should worry-there’s a new Emperor in town./

    "Well, then...I’ll take my leave!" The Vizier certainly liked to make a show!

    The room emptied...

    **********

    “Five minutes Mr Hgubmil!”

    Hsur acknowledged the news manager with a wave of his hand and continued recalling the prelude before the interview.

    *********

    There was a certain satisfaction to be taken in the uncomfortable moment it took for the Vizier and his entourage to clear the office. It was Pestage who was leaving and Hsur who was taking a seat in a plush black armchair in the now less populated office. Anakin gestured Ms. Shilling forward and into the chair next to the newsman's.

    "Ah, thank you, Lord Vader." Shilling looked uncertainly to the caster and sat on the edge of the chair, clasping the arms.

    Hgubmil smiled encouragingly to his assistant.

    It wasn’t the big moments that you really saw a person’s true nature, but in the small when they weren’t being particularly conscious of their every gesture. The Executor, looking fairly more raw than Hsur had previously noted, bowed wordlessly and cleared his throat before returning to his desk edge and sitting deliberately.

    Vader opened his arms as if to say, "Well, here we are!" His very face was still that of the young Republic hero, still the faint smile, piercing blue gaze, soft voice, but he had actually grown taller, heftier, filled out as all young men do in their mid-twenties, his jaw more pronounced, broader musculature, shoulders etc., but, aside from the shorn head and burns, recognizable.

    Hsur found himself resorting to his old stand by stall while he gathered his thoughts, and hitching his pants and sitting further forward he looked up and smiled, never one to be intimidated by a disparity of elevation! So he launched into a query hoping Shilling would be catching this.

    "The people of this galaxy need to be reassured, Lord Vader on several points. First the threat of the Confederacy which they have been living with for years; they need to know they are safe. The people are weary of war, they want peace. Second, the death of Emperor Palpatine; as long as there is a news blackout, the longer people do not hear any reliable information, rumors will spread.”

    "Go on," said Vader covering his burnt lips with a knuckled hand and glancing uncomfortably toward Ms. Shilling.

    “The quicker they are informed of the situation so much the better. It is quite obvious you have suffered from this latest battle. What I propose is this: Allow all systems on the air again. This will assure the people - Life goes on, 'normalcy.' Allow me free access to information. I will go on the air when I leave here with what I’ve learned. We can put together a documentary of the Clone Wars -I know you probably did not like it, but I was the one recall who stuck you with "The hero who knows no fear - We can also whip up a documentary on Palpatine and his accomplishments as Supreme Chancellor and as Emperor. When you recover, allow me to interview you, of course, I’ll give you the questions beforehand.”

    “In that way the beings of the galaxy can know exactly what your plans are for them - rest that uncertainty! But I need free access to information, I need the Truth. For this, you have direct access to the beings of the Empire.

    "The ... truth," Vader smirked and lifted his fist away from his lips where they left their impress.

    Hsur nodded. The hint of bitterness in the tone; that was the sound of a man who has been disappointed deeply. He’d answered with understanding - the best way to draw your interviewee out. "I know. There is the truth of the politicians and the truth of a warrior/philosopher. I think you fit more in the latter. The sooner we are back on the waves, broadcasting, it will quash rumors.

    The younger man wet his lips. The nervous gesture seemed to sting and blinking, he sighed.

    "I've noticed you have donned the habit of the Jedi..." said Hsur, casually. "Does this indicate a change in policy towards the remnants of Jedi?"

    Remaining silent, the young Executor was clearly considering how he should answer the question and covered his coughing once again with his knuckles at his lips.

    "Lord Vader, why don't you allow your physician to treat you? I will remain silent on the extent of your injuries."

    Skywalker let his head roll back upon his shoulders as he looked up to the ceiling and laughed, restraining what was obviously the urge to grimace, his arms folded over his chest. The laughter stopped and he looked to Ms, Shilling, now standing and taking the visible holo control from her hand and pushing buttons to watch the little orb spin and zoom about the room before catching it in his hand as it raced by and palming it down upon the desk top. "Ms. Shilling, is it," he said crooking a finger, beckoning her to him.

    Shilling looked towards Hgubmil, who nodded. Slowly she stood and took one step forward. "Yes, Lord Vader?"

    She wiped her hands upon her pants, and folding them, looked him fully in the face. This was not the Executor she had seen in the clips. He had seen battle and fairly recently. He looked quite ill.

    He held out his hand at chest level and waited, gazing down at her intently and firmly.

    "Sir?" She did not understand and looked to Hsur. His face remained a blank. "I do not understand, what you wish."

    "The holo, if you please, Ms. Shilling."

    "The cam?"

    "Yes, unless you've forgotten where it is, in which case I can be of some assistance..." said the Executor, biting the inside of his cheek and seeming to regret doing so with a wince.

    Ms Shilling's eyes looked to Hsur, who rolled his in return and indicated with his hand to give the Executor the miniature cam. "It's a standby, in case the guards took the larger one." she said. Shilling raised her hand to the neck of her jumpsuit and removed the hidden cam. "I've always heard you were if anything a gentleman, Lord Vader." Shilling held the tiny cam in the palm of her hand.

    "I strive always, Ms Shilling. It’s a habit!" His gaze holding hers, Skywalker took the miniature cam with deliberation from her hand.

    Feeling quite awkward Ms Shilling looked from Hgubmil to the new Emperor. "What should I do?”

    Hgubmil crossed his ankles, and leaned back in the chair, carefully watching.
    There were times to ask questions, and there were times to be silent and listen and watch.

    “Ehhhh...I do have a few more items...” Shilling volunteered,”Let me see....”

    She placed her hands in the hip pockets of the jumpsuit. Half of a nutri bar in the left ..” She shook her fingers. The bar had partially melted and the choconuts were sticking to her fingers,”...and a comb in the right...it’s ...blue.”

    Hsur smirked and muffled a laugh. If he didn’t know better he would have said that Lord Vader was thinking something rather more colorful but of course did not mention it.

    "Ohhhh “.... Shilling turned her pockets inside out, “And dirt and dust from the Dead Zone." The particles of blasted crete and dirt fell from her pockets onto the carpet. Shilling looked up into the Emperor’s face. “That’s all.”

    Vader looked down at the mess now laying in his hand and then to Ms. Shilling before dropping the energy bar into a small trash bin and pulling out a linen square to wipe her hand and his own, finishing with the comb which he then handed back to her.

    "I'm grateful for your consideration, conciliatory words and offer, Mr. Hgubmill,” he said quietly, letting go Ms. Shilling’s hand. “My injuries are superficial; nothing that can’t be treated.” (Vader’s stated estimation of his own injuries was a lie he could not expect Hsur to believe. He was obviously in need of intensive treatment.) Then, he seemed to be remembering something Ms. Shilling said, he asked of her, "From the Dead Zone?"

    "We were covering maneuvers in the DZ," explained Hgubmill, who motioned for Shilling to seat herself. "And it's not dead."

    "Yes?" said Skywalker leaning forward with interest.

    "The 102nd and the 58th were assigned to military maneuvers in that section of the DZ purchased by the billionaire Elwis Bontraar for his amusement center. There are beings there, I believe the descendants of survivors of the tragedy that occurred centuries ago. They see their home is being invaded and have responded accordingly. There have been causalities. Commander Vlad is in charge."

    "Since I was not allowed to cover the war this time around, I was assigned to cover the DZ."

    Hgubmil grinned. "It has always been helpful to have a pretty girl along, Your Majesty, but I do have my ways. I just paid a tourist 5,000 for a horrible, shakey film of you and I want to assure the galaxy you are indeed well and in charge."

    Hgubmil raised an eyebrow, waiting for Vader's response.

    Skywalker straightened and blinked, probably stowing away the information about the Dead Zone for later, as he wet his lower lip and nodded. The young man’s eyes narrowed and he squinted, looking like he was experiencing a headache.

    There was silence. For a moment, Ms. Shilling wondered if Hsur had lost this one.

    Hsur looked into the Executor’s face, leaning his head down to meet Vader’s downward and thoughtful gaze. Oh, yes... I’ve nearly got him! He knew this look. Skywalker was thinking, perhaps he should allow the interview after all.

    “Assure...yes...I think you can be of some particular service to this Empire, Mr. Hgubmil." said Vader before hearing Ms. Shillings words and then directing his next question to her. “Well, then, for the record, I am indeed in my full authority ascendant. Whether in word or deed, my hand is attuned to the law and the enemies of our peace may take notice, we shall not be moved," he stated looking directly to Hsur. "Whatever calamity has befallen this venerable theatre of government," he said raspily, "We are still standing!- You may report that!"

    "If Your Grace would permit, we could make a quick visual. Interview you now, here. This is good - appearing in your office just returned from battle. There are a few questions I'd like to ask to clarify the situation for the citizens. Besides, Your Grace, the cam is really on pause, and what you just said comes off as propaganda, not from the heart."

    For a moment, the Executor seemed to fume. “I thought I’d made it clear I do not want holos. I’d hope my words would be reported,” Vader said with clinched teeth.

    Ms. Shilling visibly began to shake and she was not so easily intimidated.

    Don’t loose it, Hsur thought, we’re so close.

    The newly showing hair on Vader’s head, he thought, was in danger of swimming right out of its follicles! "Time, Mr. Hgubmil, is not mine to command, I am as you see me. Turn your camera on and get your shots," he said with frustration.

    "Ah, but a few minutes of your time now, Emperor...Skywalker, could be valuable in the months ahead. You know what they say - a picture’s worth a thousand...."

    “”Words,” yes, just get the interview!” insisted Vader, tightly.
    Shilling could not believe how Hgubmil pressed....Emperor Skywalker?

    Vader stared hard at the holo caster.

    "Please, Your Majesty?" Hgubmil nodded towards the desk behind the Emperor and gestured for him to sit. "It shall prove most valuable to you, I promise -If not, you can toss me out on my head.."

    A small sound erupted from Shilling's throat and she shook her head vigorously in the negative.

    Ms. Soobie...." called Vader stepping backward to his desk. Hsur looked up and noticed Vader’s attention had been caught by the young man against the wall. Sandy headed fellow was wearing cadet’s uniform. Must be getting ready for Carida or something. The young man seemed surprised. Vader nodded to the boy in greeting and sat on the edge of his desk, running his naked hand over his face. Hsur had seen this resignation before. They all felt put out. The fact that Hsur had finagled the interview when they’d been adamantly against it. They'd just been instructed by a holo caster! A man who trucked in "angles" and "slants," had just made them look the fool!

    Hsur noted Vader clenched his prosthetic.

    "Yes... my Lord," Soobie chimed to him from the door. "No interruptions for the next 10 minutes..." he said quietly and throwing his hand up in gesture. Vader spared anoth glance to the young man in uniform and shook his head, murmuring to him quickly, “You’re getting quite an education today!”

    Hsur stood a little straighter, motioned for Shilling to pick up the remote for the holo cam and adjusted himself in his chair. "I thank Your Majesty," said Hgubmil.

    Taking a deep breath, Ms Shilling ventured to reach the remote and reactivate the hologlobe, hoping her presence would be invisible compared to the likes of the new emperor and Hgubmil.

    Hsur looked about the room quickly, taking stock . The room was in red, more light was needed. His eyes rested a moment on the boy and dismissed him, but tarried longer on the other occupant. He knew the man. Long braided hair, tattoos..."General Vos...thought you were dead, " he muttered.

    Vos’ chest leaped in a silent chuckle, his outward expression unmoved.

    "Your Majesty, I know this is a difficult time for you, but if you would hear me out for a few minutes, I think these minutes will be invaluable to you in the future."

    Hgubmil stood up and apprised the position of the holo-globe cam and the Emperor, hands resting in his pockets.

    "Sitting in front of your desk is perfect, letting the light in and allowing viewers to see that not all has been damaged. If all the lights could be turned on as well..."

    Skywalker gestured with his palm for Hsur to continue and he nodded to the waiting Soobie who did as was requested, the lights coming up fast.

    "And I know I took a great liberty a minute ago, calling you Emperor Skywalker, but if you would hear me out, sir.

    Vader tucked his hands into his sleeves.

    "The citizens of the galaxy remember you more as Anakin Skywalker, not as Lord Vader, Palpatine's Lord Executor. The name sounds quite ominious

    "It sounds very close to Executioner, in fact I've caught myself a couple of times, almost slipping. And the title of Vader....it sounds like invader, sir.”

    Hsur noted movement and caught Vos biting the inside of his cheek. Skywalker, cocked his head for a moment and held his tongue.

    “But with Emperor Skywalker,” Hgubmill continued, “they can identify more, take heart, remembering you as the hero with no fear. Now that same hero will guide them out of this turmoil. Of course, its your choice.”

    Hgubmil’s question was more complex than he’d thought and apparently Skywalker hadn’t given the matter much thought.. There’d been too much urgency and now the matter, though significant, clearly, seemed an irritating bump in the road, and the detour around it took too much time. “I...there are more pressing matters than ... my name...” said Vader quietly, but gesturing in frustration. “Just... get this interview moving!”

    Hbubmill nodded and began immediately, “The questions I have sir, that the people will be wondering are as follows:

    One: Was this an attack by the CIS? If not, are there any leads as to who committed this heinous act?

    Two: You are wearing the robes of the Jedi, a group that has been deemed as traitors? Why if I may ask? People will take notice?

    And ... eh... Three: WIth this recent act of terrorism, the announcement that the war is over, has been practically overshadowed. In the coming days and weeks of your reign how will we return to normalcy?

    - The cam will not go on until you are ready, sir. It shall be recorded and sent to HNN who will broadcast it to the billions waiting for assurance. You need to appear confident, strong, look directly into the lens...”

    Anakin stood up abruptly and stared Hsur in the eye. The room felt suddenly small to Ms Soobie.

    “Let me make something clear, Mr. Hgubmil; you asked for an interview in the middle of a planetary alert, I see the reason as you put it in reassuring the Empire that we are secure, point taken, but YOU ARE NOT HERE TO INSTRUCT... ME,” Vader said pointing to his chest and pulling down with a short tug on the tabs of his surcoat, looking down and then into the lens.

    "You have come a very long way since the Battle of Geonosis," replied Hsur, matter-of-factly. activating the hand held recorder. Hgubmil remained calmed as the young Emperor raised his voice in anger. In his career, Hgubmil had been cursed, struck and spit upon.

    Ms Shilling's eyes darted about the room, taking in the teen and the other....Jedi? She had heard Hgubmil earlier whisper a name....Vos was that it? Where would I rather be right now...here or the Dead Zone?

    *****

    Ms. Shilling hadn’t had to suffer the Dead Zone again before speeding back to the offices with Hsur in high gear. About the only time she had to sit was on the transport, but even then she was busy checking her cameras and reviewing the holo through a private playback viewer on the side of her handheld cam and her headset.

    “Go ahead and start checking the levels...” Hsur urged her, looking up from his notes as he wrote his introduction.

    Shilling smirked. She was already on that, but it made Hsur feel like he was in control to tell her.

    It felt like 1 minute in transit before she was grabbed by the arm and yanked out of her seat. They were running with guard escort from the office landing pad.

    On their way through the sleek corridors, nearly dropping his identity card he’d just flashed to the security scan, Hsur cried testily,“Oh ... get out of the way,” as he ran into a droid “greeter” which clattered to the floor in a rigid pile of metal.

    “Shilling, I’ll give you 45 minutes and then we meet to mix and edit.” said Hsur, righting himself and looking up just at his editor came barreling down the hall.

    “Hgubmill! You really pulled a fast one dumping your assignment in my lap without forwarding the edits. We barely got your Dead Zone article pulled together in time, but I’ll forgive you, you frellin’ kettle wart, if you have what you say you have!” Toranda’s words echoed embarrassingly loudly against the smooth slick walls of the corridor. No one misstepped or ogled or stammered, nor batted and eye. The editor’s profanity was legend!

    Hsur didn’t slow. Besides, in 30 minutes Toranda would be his best friend, the only one who has really ever always understood Hsur’s prodigious talent.....


    *****

    It was the thrill of the chase - the thrill of the story Hgubmil was so addicted to. To capture a story before any other caster. He thought nothing could top the Clone Wars. He was the only reporter to interview Chancellor Elect Amidala. He had interviewed Emperor Palpatine several times.

    Through the years his voice, his face became the most trusted in the galaxy. If Hsur Hgubmil said it was so...it was so. He had made and broken many a politico. It was Hgubmil who coined the phrase “...the hero who knew no fear...” HE had made Anakin Skywalker a name known throughout the galaxy. Now with this interview HE could make Skywalker. aka Lord Vader the new emperor.

    Was Hsur Hgubmil full of himself. You bet. He was the best.


    *****

    “One minute Hsur!” The manager crocked.

    “I’m ready.”

    The manager always lost his voice before an important cast.

    Hsur looked into the cam, watching the chrono as the seconds ticked down.

    TAG: TO BE CONTINUED…
    Last edited by Corellian_Outrider, Apr 21, 2017
  4. Sith-I-5 Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Aug 14, 2002
    star 6
    IC: Doctor Hno, Captain Sohmer, main hangar, and bridge, Krayt's Fire

    The Clawdite medic held his helmet under an arm as he examined the platoon of semi-armoured jumptroopers standing in a circle around a single six-legged Armoured Terrain Tactical Enforcer standing in the middle of the ship's long hangar deck.

    The container with the Emperor's remains were inside the armoured vehicle, and it would be tough for any opposition at Imperial Centre to get to it after they landed.

    * * * *

    The captain listened to his opposite number, as she returned to the comm.

    "Watch your language, there are young ladies present."

    Sohmer frowned. He mentally replayed the words he had used before, and didn't recognise anything that could upset the 'young ladies' she referred to. Must be some right delicate flowers on her bridge.

    "?As to your request, I am having the C-50?s or Stingers as they are known by the USF being put on standby. My Head of Starfighters believes they should only be used in an emergency. However, the USF Birds are being put into service with the escort and will be used at the first sign of trouble. I can have them directed your way if you spot anything, I hope that is satisfactory."

    "That will be perfectly fine, Captain."

    "We shall hopefully be getting underway shortly, just follow the ships in front, by the way, I?m on the Venator on your left hand side in front."

    He pressed buttons on the armrest, switching the miniature monitor view from Mavras' backside, to the view from his ship's right flank. Yep, that was a Venator alright; boy, did she look like she had been through the wars.

    "Good luck, and hopefully, nothing should come our way. Oh, and it?s ?The Almighty? Scyther Vectis to you. Roadblock out."

    The comm line went dead.

    "The Almighty." Sohmer echoed with a chuckle. "Copy that. Helm, keep us within formation. We wouldn't want to upset The Almighty, would we."

    "Yes sir." There were enough Hands and Palpatine hangars-on with fancy names, the helmsman did not sweat who "The Almighty" might refer to.

    Tag: Any concerned
  5. ArgenPalos Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Apr 23, 2004
    star 4
    IC: Mon Mothma, Biggs Darklighter, Admiral Ackbar, General Yueh (NRC)
    Location : Rebel Base, Yavin IV

    The meeting, despite a bit of contention still seemed to the auburn haired Senator from Chandrila to have gone well. Her mission to Coruscant was agreed upon and despite minor protests from Admiral Ackbar, she had resolved to dispel his concerns and go forward with her plans.

    However, the sudden appearance of the Jedi, Master Infarius along with his subsequent revelations only seemed to irk the already irritated General Yueh, and the crusty old General commenced to lay into the Jedi. The Jedi replied in anger to the General but the battle tempered man took it all in stride and his protestations fell on deaf ears as the General refused to even acknowledge the words. Evidently, after facing death in the face on the field of battle so many times, a few heated words had little effect as the General had already been rebuked twice and he still remain unmoved in his steely resolve: He had spoken his mind as he always didiand if the Jedi didn?t like, well, the Jedi knew where the door was. He dismissed the discourse as he looked to General Torian to continue the meeting as he was now impatient for some tangible course of action:

    ?Bah, whatever.?

    Much to Senator Mon Mothma?s delight, General Darkeyes decided to put in his effort and made his attempt to keep the peace:

    ??I think you and I should go out on our own mission. You need some fresh air and Imperial butts to kick,? he said to this bad-tempered partner-in-arms.

    ?Hehe, how about Coruscant,? Yueh replied with a wink, jokingly, with a hearty laugh, his first in long while.

    ?I hear there?s a bombed out Imperial Senate that could use some remodeling.?

    Admiral Ackbar cleared his throat and fidgeted in his seat, the General?s suggestion hitting a little too close to what he had recommended just a little while ago.

    Mon Mothma paused momentarily, still trying to figure out General Yueh ? on one hand she considered him rash and impulsive but certainly no one could question his commitment to the still fledgling alliance and for that she was grateful.

    ?Well, the Imperial fleet is still a bit in disarray now that their main enemy has been vanquished, the main part of the fleet will be without a primary objective so perhaps a raid on a base near a trade route somewhere in the outer rim might be prudent,? she said coolly as she nodded to General Yueh.

    ?However, regarding my voyage to Coruscant, it is indeed discouraging to hear that the Jedi Master?s presence might put our mission into jeopardy as the Jedi?s ?sixth sense,? would have made things easier, but I?m sure myself and Captain Darklighter and the our small crew will manage,? she commented with a slight nod to the young Captain.

    Biggs nodded back with a smile and wink: finally he would get back on a real mission, he thought happily. Although truly it hadn?t been that long of a time, he had felt as though he had been cooped up on that Calamari cruiser a whole lifetime!

    Mon then smoothly took a seat back down and all eyes turned toward the Supreme Commander of the Alliance, General Torian Darkeyes.

    TAG: Everyone at the meeting



  6. pashatemur Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Jun 21, 2004
    star 4
    IC: Master Emi-to Shuri, head of the Yavin Jedi
    LOCATION: Yavin, ARR High Command conference room deep inside the large Temple that served as ARR base

    Emi remained seated at the eager Master’s arrival and during the not so subtle sparring match which ensued. She knew Master Infarious was not himself. His personal "challenges" seemed to be somewhat magnified in his sudden “waking” from a long self-induced trance.

    Master Infarious was results oriented, always eager to get to the heart of matters. Yes, that was a euphemism for the Jedi's pronounced exuberance. She could appreciate that and of course, Infarious knew well he was not a member of the Alliance High Command, but one could not accuse him of being laconic. He had a some insight into what he believed was an unfolding event, something he thought he must bring immediately to the attention of the council. So he did.

    Never mind that he did not observe even the least of the Jedi way, he was not one for the deference, even though the rituals of comportment were small but significant reminders to be mindful, respectful of life, and to be humble. Master Shuri did not require her sense of self be elevate by constant acknowledgment of her position as Grand Master. Thus, Infarious' interjections without leave were not taken in offense. However, he was late in coming to his training and such lapses required attention.

    This sect, those of the order who had remained with Emi-to on one of Yavin's moon's, a necessary scion of the Coruscant Temple was new to all the particulars of marital bonds. Infarious had just suffered the loss of his life partner and was now ready to think beyond his own sense of bereavement. Indeed, so deep had this “loss” seemed to him that he had entered a seeming coma for awhile. The Grand Master felt it was appropriate to weigh all of these elements in modulating her response,for she had only to ponder her own bond with Torian to arrive at this point. She looked to Torian and smiled.

    General Yueh seemed to have expended his vitriol finally after Torian led him an impressive dance back to reason. Mon Mothma had made her decision and there seemed no further outright conflict to negotiate. Emi-to needed to speak with Ben Infarious alone.

    "Master Infarious," she said, when all were quiet with a nod to the revived Jedi, turning her seat to face him in greeting.

    "I commend the clarity of your understanding in these murky times. Yes, indeed, there has been upheaval on the capital planet. As you are no doubt ascertaining, the High Command were debating our approach at this juncture and have arrived at some preliminary measures.”

    “It appears, the Imperial Administration are distracted by internal struggle. The Emperor is dead as report has it. Senator Mon Mothma feels her presence on Coruscant will provide us with a much needed intelligence we cannot get with ease through our sources there. Bail Organa informs us that communications in and out of Imperial center are highly scrutinized."

    "It will be a high risk for her team - whoever accompanies her - with dire consequences should any of them be taken. Your offer is very generous, but the point has been made that a Jedi could increase risk of detection. Jedi on this mission would need to be detached, perhaps a “shadow.”

    “It would be best to go separately. I think there is information our Order needs for itself and that only a Jedi would be able to get at. There is indeed a mission to Coruscant...but you and I will speak on this matter before I can approve it and General Darkeyes can decide if the mission poses any further threat."

    She looked to Torian, "If you'll excuse us, General," she said rising and nodding to the rest. She gestured to the Master to walk with her from the table to the edge of the room, "I need only a moment," she ended before walking to where she'd indicated she wished to speak quietly.

    "Master Infarious, you were long in meditation. Sometimes a return to the conscious world is rather like the fairy tale, you know the one, about the man who slept for a hundred years?" she smiled at him. "There's a lot to be mindful of. Are you sure your motives are clear to your own mind?"

    TAG: all in the conference and Infarious
    Last edited by Corellian_Outrider, Apr 21, 2017
  7. DARTH_GOLLUMSMEAGOL Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Sep 20, 2003
    star 5
    IC: Jedi Master Infarius
    Location: Yavin

    When Emi-To motioned for him to follow he did. When they were out of earshot of the others she spoke softly to him. "Master Infarious, you were long in meditation. Sometimes a return to the conscious world is rather like the fairy tale, you know the one, about the man who slept for a hundred years?" At this she smiled, Ben also smiled, but just a little. "There's a lot to be mindful of. Are you sure your motives are clear to your own mind?"

    It wasn't exactly the response that Ben had expected. "Forgive me, Master. I did not come down here with any motives or agenda other than to relay what I thought may have been information that needed sharing." He stopped for a minute and looked down at the floor as he recalled his experience as he awoke. "Certainly I have no idea of exactly what happened, I may never. I came out of the woods with the intent of finding you and confiding in you what happened. I was told by an Army grunt that this meeting was going on, and when I saw everyone here......well I certainly did not practice restraint as I probably should have. Restraint even of coming down here in the first place." Now he looked back up at Emi-To. "Forgive me Master." He smiled now. "Though I won't go as far as to say it will never happen again, I will certainly be more mindful in the future."

    Ben looked over at the rest of the group and then back to Master Shuri. "So what do you think? Is there a way for us to get to Imperial Center without Vader knowing?"

    Tag: MAster Shuri and anyone else present
  8. ArgenPalos Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Apr 23, 2004
    star 4
    GM Approved!

    Name: Nashtah (aka Aurra Sing)
    --Age: 29
    ---Gender: Female
    ----Species: Humanoid (mix of human and unknown humanoid species)
    -----Eye Colour: green
    ------Hair Colour and Style: Auburn usually worn as a ponytail atop her head
    -------Skin Complexion: alabaster white
    --------Clothing: The robes of a Jedi Padawan
    ---------Physique: Slender, tall.
    ----------Personality: Serious, pensive.
    -----------Quirks: Has a streak of negativism.
    ------------Force Sensitive: Yes.
    -------------Weapon: Lightsaber but it is currently not in her possession. As a former, prolific bounty hunter she is adept at the usage of a wide range of weaponry.

    -Brief History:

    A prodigal Jedi Padawan born of refugee parents on Nar Shadaa she was discovered as a force adept as a very young child and brought to Coruscant to the Jedi Order as a candidate for jedi training. Always possessing a streak of anger she slowly progressed as a Jedi Padawan and while only months away from becoming a fully fledged Jedi Knight, while on a mission with her Master, she was kidnapped by pirates who played on her deep-seated fears of abandonment and betrayal to shake her trust in the Jedi.

    They raised the conflicted young woman as a fellow pirate. Tragedy struck again when she was eventually captured by the Hutt Crime Lord Jabba Desilijic where he saw the opportunity to use the the Force adept and had her trained by the Anzati in the dark-side arts and to be a remorseless killer.

    Her training complete and now under the employ of the Hutt, she became one of the galaxy?s most prolific bounty hunters, performing many bounty jobs and even managing to slay a few Jedi who now her sworn enemies and thus became one of the Republic?s most wanted criminals.

    Neutral during the Clone Wars as Jabba the Hutt directed, she continued her reign of terror, joing with other Bounty Hunters in causing havoc and committing many crimes in the process.

    However, on one bounty hunt to capture Jedi on Ryloth while engaging Jedi in battle she was turned and surrendered to the Jedi. Under the direction of Mater Emi-to Shuri and her new Master, Andur Del Jinn she was tenatively allowed back into the Order, which is now in hiding which by now has been in hiding since Order 66 and the Purge.

    Aboard a purloined cruiser, now in possession of the Jedi, a bomb was detonated by an enemy of the Order, and it was decided to split the Order in two. A portion of the Order was sent to join with the fledgling Rebel Alliance on the forth moon of the Yavin system which is where she now resides inside an ancient Sith stone structure, now known as the ?Woolmander? Temple.

    [IMG]

    Nashtah post coming shortly...
    Last edited by Corellian_Outrider, Apr 21, 2017
  9. pashatemur Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Jun 21, 2004
    star 4
    OCC: This is joint post with DGS. Many thanks!


    IC: Master Emi-to Shuri, head of the Yavin Jedi and Master Ben Infarious
    LOCATION: Yavin, ARR High Command conference room deep inside the large Temple that served as ARR base


    Emi’s smile turned to a soft laugh as she clasped her hands before her with a soft clap. “I don’t expect it will be the last time either, but as the poet said, “A man’s reach must exceed his grasp or what’s a heaven for?” Of course, Ben, I ask after your motives, because of your past with ... Darth Vader.” The appellation was odious to Emi-to. Remembering the man this cruel Sith had once been, it seemed an insult to the memory of Anakin Skywalker and she struggled every time she even heard the name much less said it. “Are you clear in your view, your feelings about your actions with regard to Va... uh...Skywalker’s son and now the Padawan who is in the care of one of our own? If you are caught, the ramifications could be terrible.”

    Ben’s smile vanished at the thought Vader’s reprisal if he was caught. “Yeah I thought of that, about a hundred times a day since Kamino. I still don’t know why he let me go then. I don’t think he would be so kind a second time” Ben’s thoughts then turned to little Kal and what would happen to him if he were made an orphan so quickly at such a young age.

    “Yes, mindfulness...” she said nodding and seeing the Master in thought. “The Imperial’s have a compendium of all Jedi not accounted for after the return beacon was sounded. I’m sure you know how important it is for us to know for whom and where they are looking as well as who they are sending. If I remember correctly, you had contacts in military intelligence. Do you think you could have some influence there?” He had come up through the ranks in the admiralty very quickly. Emi-to hoped he would have some sway with some of his old associates.

    Ben thought for a second. It had been almost like another lifetime when he had served in the Imperial Navy.. “There was one cheeky Lt. named Bachman that took to me pretty well. He wasn’t always in line with the Admiralty either. I think sometimes he would say things to me just to test where my loyalty lied. Let’s hope it’s because he wanted to defect rather than find defectors.” Ben stopped for a second. “Of course I have no idea where he is now or how to contact him. Perhaps Torian could help us with that.”

    Emi-to listened attentively, her hands in her sleeves. “Yes, it will take some time to lock down your resources there, but if we can cross reference with their most recent data, it would mean a world of difference not only in saving more of the order, but in bringing us back together! - But there is something more, Master,” said Emi, to catch Ben’s attention before they discussed this in further detail. “There were vaults containing information concerning some of the Order’s other enclaves, some of which were cloistered. They are small, very remote, but important and completely pacifist. I do not believe they have been discovered, but we’ve no way of knowing at this point. But you’ve never been inside the Temple....” Emi looked down for a moment. Andur del Jinn had been there, but he was still quite young. Everyone was so young! With alarm, Emi realized, she was the only Jedi in their Temple who would know enough about the Coruscant Temple to find those vaults.

    “If you are wondering about my silence, Master, I am caught in a conundrum.” said Emi, biting her lip.

    Ben smiled. He had rarely seen Master Shuri look abashed, it took him back a bit. “What seems to be the problem?”

    ‘It would seem I have been focused on the right Jedi for the job to the degree that I did not see myself in the running and now it appears....I must include myself!”

    Ben had thought that was what she was thinking. After all she was the only one he knew of on Yavin that had been to the Temple and therefore would alone have the knowledge to get what they needed. But knowledge was not the only thing needed on this mission. “Yes, well if you think that I am letting you go without me....” He stopped for a second remembering his promise to be mindful. Well at least he thought about being mindful. “......you are crazier than Master Yoda on Corillian Ale”

    “There’s no need to balk, Master Infarious. Andur del Jinn was my choice before you arrived, but you are better suited under the circumstances. It would seem the Force spoke quite clearly this morning - to both of us, but, I don’t have to like what it said!” she added with chagrin.

    Ben grinned wide “Well good, so long as the Force is clear about it.” He said with a wink.

    “Yes...now we must be as well!” She thought for a moment and sighed. “I promised to speak with General Darkeyes. You are welcome to accompany me, Master, as you will be rather central to this effort.” She smiled and allowed room for Ben to walk along with her.

    Ben smiled again. He hadn’t done so much of that in a while. “Only if Torian won’t mind, I mean I already caused quite a stir today”

    “I think his concern will be that we are well suited and return in success. I’m sure he’d be happy for your “stirring” qualities otherwise.” she said knowing that Torian was likely to say, “So long as you blow up a few things on your way out....” Come to think of it, he was likely to give her a ‘shopping list.’

    “Very well then, lead the way.” Ben said, allowing Emi to walk in front of him.

    TAG: all in the conference, Mon Mothma, Torian and Infarious
    Last edited by Corellian_Outrider, Apr 21, 2017
  10. Ominous Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Jul 30, 2004
    star 4
    OOC:
    Sorry will post shortly. I was not receiving email notifications.
    Omi
  11. TheAdmiral Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Mar 28, 2004
    star 4
    OOC: Please excuse my absence, I will answer my TAGs soon.

    IC: Adrias Stark, Nyll, Thorn

    YT-1760 'Righteous', somewhere between Derra and Naboo

    They arrived at a distance from the last known location of Master Dondarion’s shuttle. As he expected there was only empty space. A thin smile appeared on Adrias’ lips as he imagined that he could help his old Master. These were foolish thoughts, the only way to help the old man was to deduce where they would bring him. If his hunch he should start plotting to get to Coruscant, but first they needed to get the other ship, the one they usually use to get to the capitol planet. Adrias only hoped they would get there in time, this rescue operation was getting even more difficult by the minute. Sometimes the ex-Jedi wished that he was not a man of honor and just dump that mission and get on with his life. But to do that would be a betrayal to his principles, to all he believed it. Without them he would become an empty husk and his existence would become meaningless.

    Before they make their next jump he activated the Union computer that he had installed on “Righteous” to keep an eye to that part of the Galaxy. It started as a necessity, to check on the situation in the Union and to receive “assignments”, later it became just a hobby as Adrias managed to break this unhealthy relationship with the Great Houses. After a long time of assassinating their presumed enemies the ex-Jedi decided he should step out of their grasp before it was late. They would have exploited Adrias until they drain all the usefulness from him. Usually that meant until he was alive and since he was planning of living some more years the ex-Jedi severed his links with the Houses. Though he kept making some favors to the Atreides and the ones he liked, but nothing more.

    Adrias downloaded the recent entries in the major news outlets within the Union. He needed to start from somewhere after all. Skimming through some of the articles he stopped, they were all identical. The Union was under siege by the Empire. He snorted in amusement, it was the second time in a decade that outsiders threatened the “Soyuz” and Stark guessed that their paranoia must have kicked in big time.

    Another article caught his attention - the duchess Atreides was en-route to Coruscant to find a resolution to the current crises. So the Union was without its leader, probably that meant that the conservative “hawks” were in charge and having a field day. He could see the creeping nationalistic and xenophobic rhetoric in the official media. Even the more liberal and moderate outlets had to be more aggressive to avoid being branded traitors, collaborationist, defeatist and all the other nice stuff. Given the ideological situation in the Union this could cause certain events that can easily spin out of control with disastrous effects. This time there would not be a Republic to come to their rescue and they knew it. Adrias hoped that Jori had left someone to keep an eye on the things. Of course there is a Ruling Council that can’t be trusted with something so important as the safety of the Union as it consisted of hard-liner narrow-minded elements who are most likely to cause trouble than to solve it. Maybe the CSS director will be keeping them in line at least he man’s agenda was to safeguard the Union’s interests. Adrias excluded the Royal and Death Guards from the equation as they were mere tools, like the droid and clone armies during the Clone Wars. No matter what they are always loyal and have a single-minded determination to go to war even when it could ruin them.

    All in all the situation was worth following, not that it would affect Adrias’ life. He felt a bit revanchist, after all some of the Houses deserved punishment, but this was not a decision that he could make. Lucky for them...

    The ex-Jedi fetl a couple of presences approaching the cockpit. They were the ones of Thorn and Nyll. The Togorian was difficult to read at best, so Adrias did not even bother to do so, the Twi’Lek girl on the other hand was like an open book to him. Her previous concern was replaced by curiosity.

    “Thorn, plot a course to the nearest to Coruscant system...” The Togorian’s eyes slightly widened from surprise for a second.

    “I thought we were going to Nar Shaddaa! We need to get the other ship...”
    “Change of plans, we will stop at the nearest system until we can verify that commercial traffic towards the capitol is allowed to get through. You can do some of the repairs while waiting, besides ‘Righteous’ is not that known as the other ship. I guess we will be alright.”

    Thorn moved and sat next to him in the pilot’s chair grumbling.

    “Not that there is any use in arguing with you anyway...”

    The ex-Jedi grinned at the remark and turned off the Union computer. Before she sat behind him Nyll gave him a gentle squeeze on his shoulders to show her support. He could feel her satisfaction, after all she loved going to Coruscant.

    The Corellian freighter slowly turned towards the necessary location and after a moment winked out, jumping into hyperspace as if it never existed...

    To be continued…
    Last edited by Corellian_Outrider, Apr 21, 2017
  12. TheAdmiral Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Mar 28, 2004
    star 4
    OOC: Sorry for the double post. Also excuse the low quality of the post. Most parts a bit of retrospective since I was unable to react to the events in time so I had to make a quick overview of them.

    IC: ARC Commander Alpha, Lord Admiral James Xavier

    VenSD "Roadblock"

    Alpha could not believe what he was hearing, two to three months out of action. So he would be having a support and administrative role or he could just die from boredom. The ARC wanted to protest, but he knew better and restrained himself. After all he was talking with a doctor and you can?t argue with the man who happened to have saved your life.

    "Yeah I had my fair share of fighting during the wars. You can say that I am collecting scars." he chuckled bitterly. "I am sure that I will be back in line before you expect." surely a little bravado could not hurt.

    Speaking of hurt, his shoulder reminded of itself sending jolts of pain to his nerve centers. You never get used to the pain even when you had sustained multiple injuries. He remembered every trauma he had sustained during the years. Most of them hurt him even to this day, these were the wounds of his failures. These were psychological traumas that were deeper than a regular one sustained by the flesh. Your body can heal easier than your soul and his was damaged beyond repair. Alpha wondered how he was sustaining his sanity "Or maybe I am already gone. Who can tell what sane means?" he thought while the doctor was making call checking whether Captain Vectis was available.

    When the man got back to the Commander and notified him that the good Captain would not be able to talk with him at this moment Alpha moved his gaze towards the door. There was the young lieutenant Fisk leaning to the side of the door.

    "Speaking of writing the paperwork I just found the perfect candidate for the job." a grin formed on his lips.

    The young man looked startled at the prospect of doing this tedious job and unsure whether the ARC was joking or was being serious.

    *************************************************

    The Lord Admiral was escorted by the young assistant to the bridge. He wanted to look outside, the feeling of being at the command center was soothing for him. Maybe all these years have deformed him somehow, not that he minded it. You cannot fight this, not at this age. Sometimes he wondered why the Atreides won?t let him retire and die peacefully. He did not harbor any idealistic dreams for a death in a battle. Those things were for the young, he was beyond heroism. James took a mental note to talk with the duchess when the opportunity arose. Probably Helena would ?inherit? his position, he would gladly leave all the responsibilities to his younger sister.

    Despite the fact he had more years of life he wanted to settle down, maybe create a family so that House Xavier won?t die. All he wanted was to spend time in his library, go sometimes to the officer?s club in Kala city to discuss politics and military matters. Maybe take up a hobby like gardening or write memoirs. All this warmongering made him feel old and tired. The Lord Admiral wanted to create not destroy, he didn?t even care about the technical superiority of the outsiders. There won?t be a war with them, not as long as the Atreides ruled the Union. Nevertheless he would do his duty and report everything he saw and would make in-depth analysis of the current situation and draw up plans.

    As he entered the bridge he was greeted by the officers that were on deck. He must have interrupted some leisurely activity. Everyone deserved some rest after a hard won battle. This is a lesson that some commanding officers in the Union needed to learn - not to treat their people as machines. This was something James tried to teach the next generation of commanders with varying success. Only time will tell what will come out of this.

    Lieutenant Haji approached him, good man.

    Ah Lord Admiral Xavier, so good that you could rejoin us” Haji said walking up the stairs fom the crew pit and walking towards him, Haji was playing the role of host well. “I hope you have had a good rest, hopefully you have had something to eat or drink as well. We have arrived over Coruscant, sadly Captain Vectis is in conference at the moment and will not be able to join us for some time. In the meantime, can I help you with anything?”

    “Thank you Lieutenant, all of my needs were tended perfectly, thank you.” he managed a thin smile, something deeply uncharacteristically of him “One thing, you can never truly rest on-board a warship. No need to bother, you can resume your duties. I will be fine here” trying to dismiss the man without offending him, after all, despite his rank he was a guest on-board the ship. James respected the sovereignty of each ship, you can never order around people under the command of someone else that was outside your chain of command.

    A few heartbeats passed when Captain Vectis entered the bridge as well. She seemed preoccupied and the Lord Admiral decided not to bother her. After all he had nothing substantial to say or any new advice to offer. He would be an observer was his initial role. James did not intend to get involved too much in the outsiders’ affairs but he began to like them. A clearly heretical thought, if he ever shared it with a member of the Ecclesiarchy. This could surely cause the Inqusition big pleasure since House Xavier and the Ordo Inquisitoris did not see much eye to eye. They would use him in their media campaigns to show how insidious the outsiders are and how a high ranking officer like himself could get tainted and jeopardize the Union’s security. All this was an utter stupidity, but you cannot argue with fanatics, fanatics with their own secret agenda. James did not hide his distaste regarding the Inquisition and the Bene Gesserits and surely someday this would cause him a lot of trouble.

    Something caught his attention, Captain Vectis announcing that the Emperor was dead. This was an unexpected turn of events. If he was a narrow-minded hardliner he would have said that this was the time for the Union to strike. Not that it would do them much good. Maybe a rapid expansion of regions that they could not even hope to hold for long before their supply lines collapse. The Union’s forces, despite their numbers, were best suited for defense and not offense. Even without a leader the Empire is a formidable enemy, one that must not be underestimated. He felt sympathy for the men and women on-board, he knew the feeling of losing the head of state. The Lord Admiral waited for the Captain to finish giving her orders and the ships moving into position and he moved towards Scyther.

    “Captain, I wanted just to say that I am sorry for the loss of your leader. I know this is not much comforting but I have been through this and know how it feels. Please accept my sympathies.”

    TAG: Jerjerrod-Lennox
    Last edited by Corellian_Outrider, Apr 21, 2017
  13. DARTH_GOLLUMSMEAGOL Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Sep 20, 2003
    star 5
    OOC: Just letting everyone know that I am on vaction in Indiana for the Labor Day weekend and will answer any tags on tuesday!

    Have a great weekend everyone!
  14. pashatemur Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Jun 21, 2004
    star 4
    OOC: Thanks to JL and CR for their contributions to this post. I have taken the prerogative and taken all ships to port.


    IC: Marie-Celeste, Matriarch and Reina Mavras of Ursa, presumptive Empress of 1,000 Systems; Sophia Anastasia, Infanta of Ursa and daughter of Anakin, Lord Vader, Re Mavrat of Ursa and presumptive Emperor of 1,000 Systems; Maruuke, nurse to Sophia, Lord Vader, Ahsoka Tano, and NRC Sten Chekov, Captain of the Mavras Maelstrom, Gen. Lekhauf
    LOCATION: approaching Coruscant and beginning descent to planet aboard the Ursean Royal Yacht, Mavras Maelstrom



    Sophia looked above, out of the aft slanting port and to the sides as a pointelle lace-like net of escort ships formed about them. Silvered bird-like craft and the batten framed TIEs flew in between to fill in the open spaces and ahead of them, the Enfanta watched as a large dart like ship called a “Venator” slipped in deftly as vanguard, it’s brilliant white/yellow engines making her blink at the after images they evoked in her sight..

    To port and starboard, the elongated prows of two other large Imperial vessels could be seen.
    Maruuk the nurse advanced to stand behind the Reina and her charge, the Enfanta. The three of them watched in quiet awe as the surrounding ships all turned and banked slightly to port and then leveled and pitched down toward the coming atmosphere which seemed to come up suddenly to surround them. Each vessel before them now wore a bright and fiery halo that streamed behind in tails of gold and orange or white. It was like a tide of invisible fire which could only be seen as the prow or forward of each ship punctured the atmosphere.

    Indeed, Sophia could feel a wave of some small distortion pass through her and she beamed and felt her arms, flexing her toes to stand on them and bounce with excitement.

    She glanced up at her mother whose usual serene features warmed and the Reina flashed an unguarded smile.

    Sophia hugged her mother’s waist and pulled close, her mother’s arms about her.

    A click in the quiet bridge and the deep voice of the Imperial Captain Ivanov sounded firmly, “Kapten Ivanov till Kapten Chekov , vi vill bli under väg kort efter , hålla den här kanal öppen till alla tider så Jag vill vara i ständig komma i kontakt med du. Ha det god och vi vill få du ned utan en problem. Hålla den här frekvens klar till alla tider.”

    Chekov answered in kind. “Rättvis så du befalla den!” Then to the Helm he commanded, “Helm , skjuta upp till Kapten Ivanov's direktiv.”

    And in Ursean the Helm replied they were in compliance.

    The signals and ship to ship commands carried over the transceiver as Captain Vectis ceded to the point guard, “Terric, lead the way. Roll the ball”

    This Terric in turn gave the order, “All ships, on my mark, roll the ball. 3, 2, 1, go.” And the Mavras’ helm commanded engines, “Ahead 4 on your bearings to entry vector.”

    Report could be heard relayed down the line and the “heart” of the ship beat against her decking with a fast soft drumming.

    The pitch gradually increased, bright particles flared across the prow and the the planet filled the view port looking like a pale orange confection, points of light yet glinted at the far still purple dark curvature and the pull of the planet clasped the Mavras gently. The Enfanta felt for a brief moment as if the decking had been pulled from beneath her feet and she knew now it would be only minutes till they weighed ship.

    Beads coalesced into thin lines of water only to vaporize half way up their path on the thick transparasteele view port even as they passed through the high clouds of the upper atmosphere. The cloud cover parted before them quickly though and the details of the huge megalopis glinted below. Spires, obelisks, cubes, jutting high up into the sky as if reaching endlessly, yearning and crisscrossing at levels downward till out of sigth there could be seen broken lines in a grid pattern. Dots crowded together along this grid only ships sensors perceived, for there were no apparent markers keeping all in line as morning traffic began to swell with commuters, small vehicles moving in a steady stream unrelentingly to seemingly no destination but in a loop. They looked like insects swarming in linear formation that only the collective hive determined or could understand!

    The morning sky reflected and glinted off metal and glass in rose, peach, brilliant white/yellow, purple and lavender. The shadows stretched into depths unfathomable in long narrow lines, the whole of the cityscape seeming to float in a deep black ocean beneath!

    A mountain range was coming into view, evidenced by the few grey peaks that bristled with beacons and clarity filled the bridge’s view as the pink dawn was giving way to the warming sun. The outline of old districts was revealed and the trace of what once had been ground thoroughfares in rectangles and square patches of like tones where common building materials and weathering told of shared “ancestries” and development, old boundaries of highways and transit lines, old distinctions of class and culture.

    Over the public address the ships could be heard reporting “All clear,” adjustments to helms and proximity soundings. In the distance, distinctive ships could be seen converging. Sophia was told these were tugs to assist the larger ships into their berths and smiling politely, though she already knew, she thanked the young officer sent to answer questions and be of general service as the Mavras descended.

    ***

    Planetary Defense and the municipal police kept the diverted traffic cordoned and moving and patrolled the air, monitored the Imperial Executor’s escort and scrambled when alerted the leader had made an adjustment to the plan.

    Anakin threaded through the VIP lanes, thick with traffic this morning for some reason which puzzled him till he realized, they were out to see the escort! He looked back to see Vos wave with a tight smile and then gun his swoop to catch up. Glancing above at a shadow passing overhead and a particularly profound rumbling that seemed to shake the very air around him. The Re smiled broadly.

    It was the Mavras Maelstrom and her escort ships flying in from the south east, passing over the Mountain Range that gave a rise to the lower end of the Embassy District, the tallest mountain in the range, the spine of the Ursean Embassy, and atop it, the massive Basilica transported stone by stone from Kavala. It was one of the higher points of elevation around the government center of the capital planet and a landmark for traffic flying into the Emperor Palpatine Spaceport to the west from the southeast. Any pilot spotting the great domes and spires knew it was time to engage landing gear or prepare to be towed. They’d pass to the south and west of the Embassies of course, it was a tightly restrict no fly zone.

    Anakin grimaced as he saw the state of Vectis’ battle group, “All Stars.” One ship in the formation was missing a good portion of her starboard side and the bits exposed to friction glowed bright white/orange. It was being followed closely just alongside by 3 fireships, the escort having contacted the command ship, to quell any fires that might flare up now that the ship had entered the oxygen rich atmosphere.

    He indeed noted with concern, the ship was coming in partially “hot” and he pushed the swoop to her limits, veering down out of the VIP lanes to dive to the port that was swiftly coming up to his left, the escort’s shadows were catching up to him as the small armada approached with a deafening rumble from above.

    How impressive it was to see the two ISDs closing the wedge! Other commuters were pulling out of lanes to stop and stare.

    Practically giddy with anticipation, the Re knew it was foolish, this false sense of resolution. Celeste’s arrival would not change or neutralize the danger and in fact he was concerned for her safety, but she must be here, he thought with conviction. There needed to be a sense that he could draw upon her support, of their unity-the small seed of coalition.

    ***

    Striding out onto the transparisteel enclosed bridge leading towards the private section of landing bays, Ahsoka and Artoo-Detoo noticed a number of port personnel leaving in the opposite direction in a hurry. Was there something happening that she should be privy to, she thought, cocking her head, her eyes wary of her surroundings. The traffic lanes had thinned and there was not the usual whine of vehicles taking off and landing. Leaving the enclosed space of the bridge, she could hear a distant rumble... now growing more distinct...

    Closing her eyes, she focused and concentrated on from where it could be coming. She could feel there was a change in pressure with the hollows of her montrals, something large was approaching. Turning her head to the direction where it was more noticeable, she opened her eyes. Moving over to the railing, craning her neck looking out over to where she knew the Ursean Embassy rested. The main port facility was obscuring her line of sight, with the constant rumbling increasing, Ahsoka recognised those of warships. Running along the side of the railing, trying to get to a proper position to see what it was, she found there was not a place where she could get a proper view of what was approaching.

    She hadn’t received any updates or warnings over her com, nor sensed any cause for alarm. This isn’t a repeat of the attack Coruscant had suffered earlier in the last decade. Reaching out into her bond with her Master to gauge if everything was alright, she was surprised to find his presence closer than she had expected. Stepping away from the railing, she bowed her head and smiled. There was an excitement -this was something significant.

    She gazed into the narrow bit of sky between twin terminals as she traversed back through the concourse from where Vos’ ship stood still holding it’s little mystery. It was important to prove how capable she was, not only to Master Vos, but to Anakin, as well, by finding Cadet Solo. With the options that were presented her, she hoped she was on the right path. Yet, as massive and as sturdy as the spaceport’s buildings were, she could feel the flooring shake subtly, and the feeling in the air excited her curiosity.

    Obviously, this was something of great moment. It couldn’t be an invasion? She was riveted by the overwhelming shadows that moved in to block the sun. The noise was deafening, Ahsoka was seeing what literally millions were seeing as they peered through the windows of countless office and residential towers. Some looked on anxiously, others in defiance, as the early morning routine was eclipsed by the arrival of the escort. HNN was only just announcing the arrival of the Reina, the Embassy having waited to the last before releasing the bulletin, though the news provider had already gotten the “scoop.”

    Something inside resolved, her core flexed, hardening slightly, her knees bent, her hand moving to the hilt on her hip in instinct. Ahsoka knew this sound, this feeling, the sound and “fury” of the gears of war. Her life lived in readiness, according to the unwavering demands of the saber. The ancients who fought with metal blades spoke about the middle way for the order - the path was very narrow, and to live upon that edge, one must let go of fear and anger, for these were twin stones that tipped the balance and losing one’s footing had dire consequence.

    Yet, oddly, the concourse which was ringing with the thrum of 7 sets of “star” powered engines, now grew even more frenetic and the din, beyond deafening. Swarms of beings swelled the wide thoroughfare, excitedly leaning to the windows and pointing. She found herself swept up in the surge and peering from the backward angled windows that formed the slanting wall of the concourse. First one, then three enormous prows filled the view, and about them, tugs and fighters, TIEs and what she recognised to be Ursean fighters, the large shimmering white ship in the middle as large as what Ahsoka recognized to be Venators, but distinguished from the Imperial ships which flanked it by its smooth and curving form.

    Soon the crowd began to surge further back on the concourse and troopers with their distinctive clatter of armor could be heard marching toward her before they could be seen. Holo globes buzzed over head.

    Ahsoka stood on tip toe. Down the now clearing middle of the concourse could be seen a human striding in black armor and ruddy maroon robes, a mop of stiff locks about his head and beside him, a taller striding figure in black - he, Ahsoka would not mistake, even now, with his long red-brown mane spilling past his shoulders. The gait was unmistakable!

    There were several others following who’s persons she could not place immediately but for one, the tall Mas Amedda and another, a man in costly court robes, immaculately groomed, with a hairless pate. It was very odd seeing these people she recognized from so long ago, that, for a split second, her mind had difficulty resolving to the present.

    Anakin approached and stopping, came to the edge of the crowd and called her name, “Ahsoka!”

    The crowd seemed to beam, caught up in the cult of celebrity, some reaching out to touch the young leader without thinking. Imperial Guards stepped between to intervene, but the Executor motioned them back and Anakin waved Ahsoka to come forward. He had to communicate visually with a trooper to help part the crowd for her to emerge, so tight had the space become.

    Ahsoka smiled broadly and picked her way through the tightly packed throng, excusing and suggesting as she passed having to “cut” a swath to let Artoo follow, which he did with some choice bleats. After a couple of seconds, those between her and Anakin parted enough for both Ahsoka and Artoo to squeeze through and make some progress. She found it hard not to pounce to close the distance faster as he took hold of her hand and she found herself pulled swiftly the rest of the way into the clear.

    The Executor could be seen handing the young Togruta from the crowd, her face wearing confusion and astromech unseen by all but those immediately proximate. The R2 unit whistled and bleated excitedly following haltingly after the Togruta to many a banged limb or pedal, curses and cries where followed after the pretty female.

    /We can talk after the Reina is safely landed. Come on./ Anakin sent to Ahsoka, urging her to move quickly as he nodded with noble obligation to the onlookers. Such a gesture was a small but important matter of political etiquette Prime Minister Neuewald said cost little. “After all, you are not required to compromise yourself with a projection of feeling or belief you do not espouse, except that which must be the habit of your position, leadership. And my Re, it must be assumed as you are one, that particular feeling is intrinsic to you and to command, duty requires you to commune with those under your guidance.”

    What a rukus! She had to steady herself grasping his shoulder to stay upright as the crowd nearly seemed to hold on to the rest of her. Ahsoka could have sworn she almost lost a boot! Looking down to her foot, she stomped her boot back on, glancing quickly to see a few people jump in alarm as the battered little R2 unit gave a few shocks and trundled through.

    Anakin patted Artoo’s dome in greeting but continued with such speed, the astromech had to engage repulsors to keep up.

    Coming up close, catching Anakin’s eye Ahsoka looked to her Master in bewilderment, giving him a quizzical look as he asked her to come along quickly, but her questions were answered in part in tacit connection through the Force. They moved on and glancing quickly to make sure Artoo was with them, she took in the rest of the escort as she felt something from her Master a bit more pronounced than that brief touch in the bond.

    Ahsoka fell in step glancing to Vos and puffing hard as she reminded herself to ask him what it might have been that Cadet Solo found so irksome aboard the ’Mortis Stellarus’, keeping herself above the sea of activity.

    So it was the Reina’s arrival that was the meaning behind the warships in atmosphere. An impressive escort, thought she. Her pace slowed a fraction, catching a glance at the side of Anakin’s face, she connected with excitement. He was happily anticipating the next moments, and yet, Ahsoka found her gut fluttered, as if she’d swallowed a whole migration of butterflies! This was uncharted territory to her, this concept of the family. Her only family had been the few in the order, including Anakin, who knew her best, but somehow, this was different and embracing her Master meant she suddenly wondered if this part of him would accept her. Taking a deep breath, allowing it to fill her lungs, she held it gently for a few seconds before expelling the exhumed air and her own anxiety, taking comfort in the company close to her. Tilting her chin up, she walked a bit closer to her Master and found her hand in his and just as she realised it and thought to withdraw it, he answered her her and held her hand and a firm, warm grasp.

    The screech and whine of the huge hulls groaning against the pull of the tugs and the repulsor cushion that settled the big ships into each berth pierced the thick walls of the concourse. The great expanse of the sleek but utilitarian terminal clear but for waiting guards and troopers, the crowds held back. The light filled space darkened as the tugs nudged and pulled the huge ships to their moorings.

    Empire’s Will was next. The two ISDs were drawn out onto the huge tarmac to two open terminals in the distance. For each ship, the 8 moorings were mammoth rectangular mesa-like footings along side the fortress-like terminals which lights blinked in the grey/orange morning smog that settled over the plain of the tarmac. Here is where such behemoths of this size were accommodated. Tugs dotted the skies around the two ships like a swarm of fat black locusts. A sharp screech of metal echoed over the ferrocrete as the repulsor skiffs and sleighs were adjusted to support the ships in their berths.

    The Mavras Maelstrom settled in first. At the end of terminal the crowds were held way back as the droids and machinery and service techs and medics were assembled to care for injured and extinguish fires should fires have flared up aboard ship during it’s descent. Even as the tugs settled her in, the crowds gasped as they saw the gaping internals charred and exposed to the outside, bits and pieces still falling, a chair and cabinet, pieces of partition wall, and other things charred beyond recognition.

    Krayt’s Fire’s berth was several down and cordoned completely from the crowds, a partition closing that end of the concourse where General Lekhauf and the 501st awaited the off-loading of the cargo. A secured transport sitting on a pad at the end of the terminal waited, wings folded up to fairy the remains of the Sith Emperor to a waiting forensics team Amidala had assembled. Urseans and Black Guard would accompany the remains along with a small 4 man contingent of Imperial Guard. The Ursean pilots waited in the Imperial tri-wing.

    Solitary, his silhouette standing out against the light grey of the terminal in black, General Lekhauf wore his red/blond hair cropped like the troopers now, a tall man who own square jaw and chiseled features could be seen in many of the later clones for whom he served as the genetic donor. He would greet Captain Sohmer and the Imperial Hand.

    He watched as the ship was nudged into position and into the narrow slip where she would rest, anchored and off- loaded and eventually resupplied and maintenanced.

    The sound of the crowds could be heard over the din of the engines and Lekhauf raised his brows at that.

    The crowds roared with cheers finally realizing, the war was over! Across the galaxy, their fervor and excitement could be seen in holos large and small, in private residences, taverns, shops, aboard freighters and in offices...

    TAG: Scyther and All Stars, Gr. Adm. Xavier, Amidala, Sohmer and crew, Sin....holo watchers and general interest.
    Last edited by Corellian_Outrider, Apr 21, 2017
  15. Sith-I-5 Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Aug 14, 2002
    star 6
    ****

    TODAY

    IC: Master Yoda, bridge of the Darth Unlucky, Fastern Island
    Location: Pantolomin

    Seated on the outsized pilot chair, unable to physically reach the controls, and in a cloaked vessel whose style of technology meant that having the cloak up meant the sensors read nothing, the Force was more than a crutch to the Grandmaster, it was the only thing keeping his immediate group alive.

    Right now, that group comprised Padawans Roland and Scout, in the parked Firespray patrol craft on the grey-sanded beach below the invisible Consular-class spacecraft; the unconscious Mitch Nifesta and Padawan Fenlaka Zula, down in Engineering, he guessed, or wherever the twi’lek agent would keep a cloaking field generator.

    Yoda had an expanded version of the Force power Battle Meld working for him, a sphere of sensory influence outside the cruiser, and then, he suddenly thought of something easier, something touted in the meagre collection of holo gameshows that Mitch had aboard the ‘Unlucky: phone a friend.

    Master Yoda telepathed directly down to Roland, where the twenty-something jedi should be getting the fifteen-year-old Irisa’s stolen Firespray into the air: Sensing a lot of additional attention coming our way. See what can you?

    Master. ARC-170s, an All Terrain Tactical Enforcer emerging from the waves, pleasure wave-skimmers.

    Yoda nodded, pointing his finger at a button that he knew would have the ship’s Taim & Bak KT6 heavy blaster cannon popping from concealed emplacements at the sides of the cockpit in which he sat, alone.
    Watch this, oh yeah! He felt the vibration through the hull as lethal energy was sprayed with extreme, though auto-, prejudice.

    Watch what? The padawan telepathed back, curiously.

    Happened, nothing did? The elfin teacher frowned, looking over the controls, then the millicredit dropped. Try that again without the cloak, I shall.

    Try what again?

    ****

    Fastern Island

    Commander Theta, the clone commander in charge of the Venator Star Destroyer, Admiral Thrawn, bounced in the hotel waveskimmer, alongside AIL-1745, as the sea-craft barrelled towards Fastern Island’s rocky and volcanic sand- covered beach, while behind and level with them, half a dozen other ‘skimmers threw briny surf in their wake.

    He licked his lips as they neared the parked Firespray, his tongue tangy with the salt spray left on his face.

    “There they are!” He pointed, indicating the shimmering red shape appearing out of thin air above the grey, elephant- headed space ship on the ground. “They are de-cloaking. Everybody move in. Fire to disable!”

    “Yes, sir.” The armoured soldier who was doing the steering, acknowledged.

    THUUM!

    A spear of red shot from the materialised cruiser’s bow, creating a geyser of spray and steam in the sea to their right, lifting and somersaulting one of the other skimmers out of the water to crash onto it’s top, though the citrus-coloured hull remained afloat.

    Theta’s skimmer was already curving away from the danger, aiming for the beach further down to their left.

    Closer to the beach, two of it’s six great legs already visible, and dribbling water, the AT-TE was slowly swinging it’s unwieldy heavy laser turret towards the Consular, though several green and lime laser bolts from the inbound air support was already crashing into the larger vessel’s burgundy flanks.

    Another red burst reciprocated, shooting into the air over the skimmers. Theta was cheered by the jedi craft’s slow rate of fire.

    “I’m hit!” Someone screamed over the comlink.

    A sonic scream from overhead had the grey-uniformed commander’s head turning to see one of his s-foiled starfighters trailing smoke and flames, and coming down into the drink, slamming into the surface of the water like it was hitting concrete, the striped nose instantly wrenched up at an angle with the impact.

    Two other ARC-170s screamed overhead, lost to sight as they flew over the cliff that the beach backed onto.

    “Call the Thrawn!” Theta shouted at his guard as the skimmer’s sloped bottom scraped up the beach. He was already hitting the safety restraints. “Get recovery larties down here!”

    “At once, sir.”

    A thunderclap erupted nearby as part of the beach exploded, the shockwave catching the officer as he clambered over the slick bow of the skimmer, and almost fell into the surf. His recent history as a starfighter pilot meant he still had extremely good reflexes, and he managed to drop to all fours to preserve his centre of gravity.

    He had to duck his head into his shoulders as pulverised rock and sand from the latest explosion pelted over them and the skimmer.

    Tag: no-one
    Last edited by Corellian_Outrider, Apr 21, 2017
  16. Corellian_Outrider Admin FF | Art Curator | Oceania RSA | CR of NSW

    Administrator
    Member Since:
    Mar 9, 2002
    star 5
    ~OOC~ Special thanks to Pashatemur for this joint post between us.

    ~IC~ Rowan Halcyon & Se'Iva
    0.6 deca-cycles before the incident at Coruscant
    Location: Island Villa, Kaladan

    "Rowan?" So many questions she had. "Where are we going? Who is this person to whom you have spoken? Shouldn't we procure...another ship? Can we count on this person's aid?"

    "We need to get to Corellia. We need to... procure some transportation and inform Feye of what has happened. The person I spoke of claims to be the ruler of the Union. The surname is known to me, but I have some doubts. Certain matters were purposefully avoided and information missing. "

    "Surname," Se'Iva repeated, solidifying the term in her mind. Her wings flexed partially as her circulation improved. "Are we going to this ...person of dubious surname?"

    Smiling inside. "I've got the impression that she will come to us. Something about dealing with business elsewhere." Shaking my head. "Anyhow, if asking doesn't work, I guess we?ll put plan B into effect."

    Se'Iva flitted, lifting gracefully into the air beside Rowan as they both cleared a fallen marsh tree. "Plan B?"

    Her wings spread and waved above the Outrider, partially shading him, though so fine was their thickness and seeming fragility that the sunlight penetrated the silvery scaled wings and showed the veins in a lacy shadow. From her new elevation she looked carefully around to see what she might.

    Smiling now up at her, finding myself mesmerised by the beauty of her wings and the way light interacts with them. "Plan B is what we do best... Improvise."

    "Oh!"

    Se'Iva raised her brows as she looked down to Rowan and then ahead and lighted on the sandy loam to continue walking at his side. She followed Estel's playful path with her eyes as the cub searched for insects and slimy amphibians to eat. The cub shook his head as one little frog perfumed Estel's nose with a mild toxin. The sun felt luxurious on Se'Iva's wings and skin and the Cha'ala stretched up to absorb the energy, her body scintillating as she imbibed, but she reduced her profile once again in wariness.

    "There is something I must warn you about these people." I pushed aside a large frond to prevent it from connecting with my face. "We are... different from them... from their point of view. Because of that, they will display... xenophobic behaviour towards us. Now that there are three of us…" I inclined my head towards Estel. "...their attitude might be amplified."

    "....pho - beak…?" Se?Iva pronounce the strange word in a murmur upon encountered yet another new term. "Do they commune as one body?" The Cha'ala wanted to know if these strange people were more or less like her own.

    "Hmmm…." I remember back to what could be considered another lifetime ago. It is difficult to describe these people. "Not exactly. I have limited experience with the people, only with those a bit higher on the social ladder. They are not united as one... from what I can remember... but brought together by an... idea, and kept in line by fear of diverging."

    "What is that idea?" Se'Iva asked immediately, pondering why these beings should share such a constraining fear of being different.

    "Glorification." I stated, my tone sounding half amused. "It's more convoluted than that but that's it in a nutshell."

    "Phhhhhht!" exclaimed the Cha'ala, amazed at the simple answer. So all the high drama was about vanity? So she looked Rowan in consternation. “They have ... nothing more ... pressing of concern? Perhaps they are too well fed!” she said with disgust, her nose turned up as she looked over the beautiful vista; there was abundant life here and light.

    “It is not a trait I am fond of, though some people are ‘wired’ differently and their priorities are…” Gesturing with my hand as I try to find the appropriate word. “..not that straight.... and more...self...regarding.” Shaking my head, chuckling. “That’s diplomatically putting it.”

    “There is a death sickness here ... a yearning for that which is the opposite of nourishing,” Se’Iva stated plainly. “General Cho’etas is twisted just so,” she said, referring to the reason she was exiled from her own kind. Then
    pensively, she added, speaking of the Sith who helped her escape Ch’a space, "and Scimitar was so, though, I'm certain he did not think it was glory he sought. He believed he was after something more." She turned away for the moment to blink away something in her eye.

    Averting my gaze, I grimaced as I pushed back and buried the flash of hurt and remorse triggered by the mention of Scimitar. He’d wronged us both, but he’d stranded Se’Iva in a foreign space and given only lip service to her urgent warning, instead of helping to disseminate it, thwarting her in order to use her as a means to more power.


    After some silence and acute awareness of the shared sadness the utterance caused, it occurred to Se’Iva that they were heading in a very definite direction. “Where are we going?”

    Slowing my pace, I looked about our surroundings. The noise of the surf could still be heard from the path we had walked. Pointing a bit off to my left, “There is a villa situated in that direction... and we’re going the long way about reaching it. I’m not sure how kindly disposed they are to us wandering about but..” I shrugged. “I figured the more out of their way we keep, the less discomfort for all of us.”

    Stopping, I glanced down, smirking a little as I saw how the sand was slowly buffing the caked mud of the wetlands off my feet. “I want…” Lifting my head up, my expression became more solemn. “I am sorry for dragging you into this, I….” The words I wanted were there on the tip of my tongue, but I could not bring myself to say them. Pursing my lips, dismissing the negative thoughts. “However, I am grateful you did what you did and were there to fish me out.”

    Se’Iva stopped, her ragged soft boots deep in the soft powdery white sand of the beach where they had now come and she looked to Rowan striding along side her. “You did not drag me into this. I came to warn your people, all of them, though now, I have seen how obstinate and little some can be, I despair any will listen. You are not responsible. I wanted to go to the leadership with the most power, and that was A’grive Dür , at the time. I came looking for you when he would not attend my warnings. You are …” she stopped. She did not have words for what Rowan was for her. He felt like ...like ... haven...home. ”I am grateful too.”

    The moment became awkward again and the Cha'ala motioned with her chin, “We’d better hurry. I do not wish to stay here in this place much longer.” Indeed, she glanced in the direction Rowan had indicated they must travel to go to this villa. She felt very hesitant about going there.

    I gazed at her expression for a second, feeling a connection to the sacrifices she had made, the urgency of her goals. I gave her an understanding smile. “The sooner we reach Corellia, with the resources available to us... things will change for the best... hopefully."

    Se’Iva nodded silently and looked down, her platinum hair shining and whipping in the sunshine. She reached out tentatively and lightly touched Rowan’s left hand with her pale fingertips, resting them and transmitting her thoughts in sensation, wordless, but specific, the communication direct, a wave of both gratitude and concern, and of something inexpressible even with the most articulate of utterances. She removed her hand once the “waves” had whelmed her and moved on to the recipient.

    Slowly she lifted her eyes and then in silence walked with Rowan, his steps seeming to match hers..

    Taking a slow breath, the powerful sensation still lingering when her touch left my skin. Instinctively my left hand reached out for hers. Blinking, I looked up to her face, no words can express what I had experienced and felt, such a direct communication was of the sort Padawans and Masters had, but this was perhaps the most powerful I’d ever experienced though it was brief. There were no words as there might be in such an exchange between Jedi. It was clear, she would allow only this quick glimpse into her soul and I would respect her privacy. As it was, I was taken by surprise and allowed this communication when for others, I would not. Closing my right hand, I touched the loose fist to my chest and bowed my head, conveying with my gesture, my understanding and mutual regard. She honoured me and I wanted her to know I understood the honour.

    Se’Iva slowly smiled at him. Their departure from Hapes seemed eons ago. The crash and tumultuous escape from the burning wreckage of Rowan’s ship, too, seemed another life-time though it was only a night past. He was well mended and she believe he must have relied on the Force to help him. Still, these people had taken him in. It was puzzling.

    The mewing and hiss of Estel as the cub pawed at a cornered crab in a tidal pool caught her attention and the gentle moment, turned to practical alertness, if with some amusement.

    Something glinting in the pool begged further inspection.

    Following Se'Iva's gaze to the tidal pool, Estel's inquisitive behaviour with the crab reminded me that he needs some sustenance soon. Moving to collect the cub, I noticed that something else had caught Se'Iva's attention. "Wait a sec…"

    The cool water felt refreshing on my legs as I stepped in to get a closer look. Careful not to tread on anything sharp, the object in question was a piece of debris. "Do you think it is part of ours? Wait…" I looked out beyond the rocks to the rolling waves. If the three of us had survived the crash, is it possible that there are others? Who else did not evacuate with the rest of the crew? Estel splashed her paw thrice into the shallow water as I stepped to show her the debris. "Do you know if anyone else had stayed during the evacuation?"

    Se’Iva closed her eyes instinctively at Rowan’s voice as he incited her to remember the events of the crash.

    “The corridor was like a torrent. I was caught in the flow, trying to get to you. They came to get me, but I could not leave…” She thought hard, seeing in her mind’s eye, details she’d stored and not had time to think over. Was everyone moving toward the hangars?

    It was like a holo before her, all happening around her, the night “replayed” and she panned the scene mentally.
    “I...don't know...Wait!...There were other craft ...missing from the hangar. Some people moving against the throng...but why...I don’t know....I remember now, but I had assumed they were under the water, but yes, the hangar seemed...spare!”

    Envisioning the scene, the descriptions filled in a number of blanks with my memory of the incident. "Other craft missing... Hanger... spare.." I mulled over the words. "Our squadron... The life boats and shuttles... submersibles. Hmmm."

    They moved together in the direction Rowan gazed as he observed the tide and apparent currents, searching for other signs in the expected debris field. Soon there were other pieces found in the sand and surf which could easily be overlooked even by an observant individual. Both picked over the sand and water nearly a dozen pieces Rowan now held in his hand, the “catch” of the day.

    He pointed out in the direction he expected the ship might have sunk.

    "If the ocean currents are standard for this year, what we got washed up here could originate from that area" Rubbing the corner of my eye, I spoke my observations out loud. "If we can determine the point of impact where the ship had hit the water... we might be able to determine how long it took to sink and the time other survivors might have had to get out of the sinking vessel…"

    * * * *

    Kaylee
    Location: ‘Icarus’

    “We have a contact!” Skaggs had called out from the sensor station. "Something small."

    "Is it the same object we had picked up earlier?" Kaylee asked as she made her way over to see for herself.

    “It could be..”

    A small blip on the sensors, the readout of the elements suggest that the object is metallic. The size barely a few metres in length, way too small to be the ’Valhalla’. Was this the same object that they had picked up earlier? Kaylee wondered. “Can you track where it is heading?”

    Skaggs entered in a few commands, a dotted curve appeared on one side of the dot indicating the path it had already taken. “Using that... This is a rough estimate from the current movement...”

    An opaque line started forming an arc, branching from the moving dot and overlapping with the origin point. Their trajectory will intersect with Icarus’ current location.

    “That does not look like it is pure coincidence…” Kaylee paused, biting her bottom lip. “That thing is going to pass over us…” Was there something on board... could our presence be drawing it here? A scout from those that attacked them or is this all that is left of ‘Valhalla’? If only they could get a visual at this range.

    “If they are hostiles, I do not think our weapons can work in this environment.” She exchanged looks with Skaggs. Turning to the command chair, she stepped up and reached over to activate the ships’ internal communicator.

    "Attention all crew, we have a contact heading our way. Their origin and intent are still unknown to us. There is a chance that we might have boarders. Check your sidearms and stick together. We’ll keep you updated as soon as it happens." Signing off, she tilted her head up and caught the attention of the nearest officer. “Run a diagnostics on our systems, check if something on board or some signal is emitting some sort of signal-”

    “We are picking up something.” The Comms officer shouted out. “... putting it through now.”

    There was a sharp blow out before a constant crackling over the speakers. Listening intently, they could make out something faint under all that noise.

    "Boost the signal." Kaylee instructed.

    “We haven’t finished the calibrations, there might be some distortion.”

    Nodding slowly, Kaylee walked around the consoles to stand before the hemispherical forward viewport. Her eyes searching outside as she listened for a change in the audio.

    ["Ha-ing, .arus. ..is Kal"]

    “Kal?” Her eyes widened and turned her head to the Comms officer. “Can we open a channel?”

    There was a pause before she was given the thumbs up signal.

    “Kal?” She held her breath as she awaited some response. There was a possibility that they could not transmit. Her gaze returned to the viewport and looked beyond the invisible wall of the shields, the immediate space around them was a subdued blue hue, shimmering shafts of light filtered down from above.

    [“Swe-theart? A... ight?”] Kal’s voice crackled back over the speakers.

    “Oh thank heavens,” She sighed with relief. “What happened, is everything alright?”

    The delay was starting to become unbearable.

    [“...asking ..met-ing.... Not exactly... halla.. ..ashed.”]

    “Kal…” Drawing her arms in front of herself, a tingle ran down her spine. “Where is Rowan?”

    [“...we couldn’t get to him.”]

    It felt like a cold lead weight was starting to form in her stomach, bewildered, she shook her head. ”No..”

    [“... we have reason to believe that he escaped in time ..."]

    “Go on!” Kaylee pressed, her gaze travelled out over the neck and prow of the ’Icarus’ and slowly up the sands that trapped the bow of the ship. Deep colours of blues and purples mixed with reds of the coral that decorate the banks and cliff wall that stood before them. Small objects were moving back and forth past at various speeds. Flashes of yellows, whites and blue tiny schools of fish dart about their underwater playground searching for food. Larger solitary creatures drift lazily past without a care in the world, the array of life went about it’s business oblivious to the urgency she was feeling.

    ["... picked up a signal... another submersible... I could sense his signature clearly, until I lost him..."]

    “LOST HIM?!” Kaylee felt as though the ‘weight’ in her stomach had dropped. The vibrant colours outside blurred, turning into contorting dancing blobs to her vision.

    [“No... it, I mean....”]

    Dipping her head, she regained focus on the sediment covered prow of the ship. “Kal!”

    [“-for a while but... he is out there-”]

    “Find him!”

    TAG: To be continued + Villa Residence
    Last edited by Corellian_Outrider, Apr 22, 2017
  17. Sith-I-5 Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Aug 14, 2002
    star 6
    IC: Ewlla Iillor, the Lockley apartment.
    Location: Galactic City, Coruscant

    Clone Wars - deep under planet Nadiem

    Alerted by the ominously rythmic clanking of metal feet, the entrance of the IG-model assassin droids was a game changer for the Republic lieutenant, and she figured it would be a bad idea to show her hand to automatons that could out-think, out-shoot, and out-everything her.

    Ewlla kept her head down, making as small a target as possible, determined that neither droid should see her form beyond Jedi Master Starkey?s stasis coccoon as long as they stayed where they were.

    Stay calm. Uncle Mitch?s voice sounded in her head. Try not to move. Have you got your blaster?

    She nodded her head slightly. ?Yes,? she whispered.

    Good girl. She frowned, surprised. She fancied she could feel the twi?lek?s approval of her, accompanying his thought. Was she imagining that? Stay hidden, but see if you can burn into Starkey?s containment.

    ?Understood.?

    Making as tiny movements as she could, squatting, with her knees almost sharing the same space as her head, she managed to manoeuvre her left hand to join the one holding the blaster, so that she could adjust the energy setting from bolt, to a steady coherent beam.


    The near constant thrumm was rattling the floor to ceiling panes, the cutlery on the scuffed metal dinner tray, and the dinner tray on her lap, then slipped off her thigh to scatter wet noodles over the white carpet, and Ewlla bolted awake, her stockinged feet kicking up off the pouffe, and looking about the cop's living room, startled!

    THRUMMMMMM

    What the frag was that?!

    Her peripheral vision caught an indistinct, but dark shape to her left, and she slowly turned towards it, then on noticing it was outside the windows, padded quickly across the thick carpet to press her nose against the glase, her breath steaming it up.

    Several Imperial warships, and the white curves of an Ursean cruiser that she recognised as the...yes, the Mavras Maelstrom, were slowly navigating the skies over Galactic City.

    She, in her position as a ships' captain, the thought hit her that she might have compromised that...in, in her position, she had a good view of many capital ships, but seeing them in space was a whole different kettle of fish than witnessing the majestic sights in the atmosphere of a planet, and from below, as a civilian.

    The Huntress commander stayed at the window, fingers splayed against the glase at either side of her rapt features, drinking in the sight as the ships made their way to their respective docks.

    Tag: You peeps making all the noise! :p

    OOC: Nadiem memories are from Star Wars...007 Series: Licence to Clone
  18. pashatemur Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Jun 21, 2004
    star 4
    OOC: Your pardon, all. I just realized a gaff in my previous post about the landing of the escort on Coruscant. The ship names referred to in two paragraphs toward the end were transposed. The part in question was unclear about the ships as they landed and should have read as follows:


    The Mavras Maelstrom settled in first. From the rear guard of the escort, the two ISDs were drawn out onto the huge tarmac to two open terminals in the distance. For each ship, the 8 moorings were mammoth rectangular mesa-like footings along side the fortress-like terminals which lights blinked in the grey/orange morning smog that settled over the plain of the tarmac. Here is where such behemoths of this size were accommodated. Tugs dotted the skies around the two ships like a swarm of fat black locusts. A sharp screech of metal echoed over the ferrocrete as the repulsor skiffs and sleighs were adjusted to support the ships in their berths.

    Empire?s Will was next. At the end of terminal the crowds were held way back as the droids and machinery and service techs and medics were assembled to care for injured and extinguish fires should fires have flared up aboard ship during it?s descent. Even as the tugs settled her in, the crowds gasped as they saw the gaping internals charred and exposed to the outside, bits and pieces still falling, a chair and cabinet, pieces of partition wall, and other things charred beyond recognition...

    Thank you,
    Pash
  19. Jerjerrod-Lennox Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Mar 9, 2005
    star 7
    IC:Doctor Marcus Rufus (NPC), Captain Scyther Vectis
    Location: Medbay, Bridge, VenSD Roadblock

    “Yeah I had my fair share of fighting during the wars. You can say that I am collecting scars.” he chuckled bitterly. “I am sure that I will be back in line before you expect.” surely a little bravado could not hurt.

    Rufus thought this man was brave but nonetheless a little naive if he thought he would be up and about before then. He did’nt dare say it though in front of this dangerous man.

    After he had spoken to Lieutenant Haji, he noticed the Commander look towards the door behind him.

    “Speaking of writing the paperwork I just found the perfect candidate for the job.”

    The doctor turned to see a man standing there with lieutenants insignia on his armour.

    “Perfect” Rufus said smiling, unsure whether the young man was joking or not “He will do nicely. Congratulations Lieutenant you have been chosen to do the Commander’s paperwork whilst he is otherwise incapacitated”.

    A couple of minutes later an announcement came over the tannoy system.

    “Attention Doctor Rufus and all medical staff. We will be entering Coruscant and landing soon, all staff to be on standby.”

    “I guess my time is up” Rufus said sadly “A pleasure to see you Commander, I’ll pop back and see you again when we land. Captain Vectis will back when she can, in the meantime, relax and recuperate”

    Rufus bowed his head in respect and left to go to his station.

    ***

    Bridge, Roadblock

    As they continued to descend into Coruscant, Scyther kept her eyes forward, not daring to look anywhere else. Terric was still giving “All clear” notifications from Unstoppable, whilst Ivanov was relaying instructions to the Mavras. All was proceeding well so far, but Scyther didn’t want to relax just yet.

    Out of the corner of her eye she saw Haji return to his position in the portside crew pit. It looked like Lord Admiral Xavier didn’t need anything at the moment. She felt his presence as he moved up next to her chair, then he spoke which startled her out of her concentration.

    “Captain, I wanted just to say that I am sorry for the loss of your leader. I know this is not much comforting but I have been through this and know how it feels. Please accept my sympathies.”

    Scyther looked up into his wizened face. He had become a sort of father figure towards her, even though he had been on board the ship for a short time. He had help out massively with finding out who had nearly wiped out half of the 917th squadron and had given her great insights into the mysterious faction known as the Union.

    “Thank you Lord Admiral” she said with respect “With what you have told me about the Union, I do not find it surprising that you have gone through this same thing many times. We will move on from this I’m sure, and under new leadership, we can continue to prosper and bring peace to the galaxy”

    She smiled “Lord Vader will see to it that infighting will not be tolerated”

    She faced forward again, making sure that the Lord Admiral did not feel ignored. Madison then got on the comm.

    “Sir, two of my Birds have just flown out to intercept a couple of fireships. They have responded, they say not to worry, it’s to put out the fires on my starboard side”

    “Given the fact your starboard side is on fire, other than that you should be chirpy”

    “Er....”

    “Madison, you seriously need to get that repaired, no doubt one of your pieces of debris has hit some poor person on the head”

    “If it does, I’ll take them out to dinner”

    “I’ll hold you to that one Madison”

    They continued on in silence for a while, Scyther’s stomach feeling rather twisty. It was going rather well, and even better, there was no mishaps concerning Krayt’s Fire. Arazov was keeping an eye on things, and would report if Captain Sohmer even moved an inch out of the group’s formation.

    A while later they finally passed over the edge of the Embassy district, and the Emperor Palpatine spaceport appeared, a behemoth of a structure that housed Venators and Imperial Star Destroyers alike. Scyther was now feeling even more nervous, now she had to land this beast into their assigned docking area without either touching any walls or missing their markings completely.

    “Ivanov, better let the Mavras know we are coming up on the spaceport”

    Ja Captain” Ivanov responded, deadpan as usual “I’m sure they will be relieved to hear it”

    “I’ll bet there are some crowds down there” said Arazov, sounding nervous at the prospect of crowds watching their every move.

    “Don’t worry about it, crowds are our speciality” replied Terric

    “We might have deafened them already” replied Bahari which caused chuckles to come over the comm.

    Thy were now getting closer to their destination, and you could plainly see the crowds milling about near the spaceport and the massive dockings bays that would be the Star Destroyers homes for a while whilst they were repaired and spruced up. Scyther would make sure her crews would get a break, even if they had to remain on Coruscant.

    “Time to get the landing gear down” said Terric, “Control is requesting that begin landing procedures now. Tugs are on the way”

    “Roger that Terric. All ships, this is Captain Vectis, we are near our destination, Unstoppable, Empire’s Will, prepare your landing gear. Danger Zone, Peace Keeper, prepare landing procedures. Tugs are now on their way. Ivanov, inform the Mavras they can land when they are ready, we will retract the escort now, as I deem it safe to land. Delomeux, time to bring our birds in”.

    “Yes sir”

    There was a rumbling sound from below Scyther’s feet as the landing wheels began to descend and lock into position. Venators had wheels so they could take off from runways if needs be if spaceports did not have docking bays sufficient enough to handle the bigger ships.

    As the Mavras descended with Ivanov wishing them good luck and a safe landing, the tugs began to contact the All Star group. Fireships were still unfortunately surrounding Madison’s starboard side, spraying foam and water to try to stop the fires which kept popping up.

    “We’ve just as a request from Control that myself and Danger Zone are to land first” reported Bahari “your berths are a little bit further along, we’ll be landing not far from the Mavras Maelstrom

    “Roger that Bahari, you and Arazov stay safe, I’ll talk to you again when we all land”

    Scyther mentally crossed her fingers that both he and Arazov would land without mishap.

    They didn’t. Both Peace Keeper and Danger Zone descended with grace, and settled onto their berths with no problem, the tugs gently guiding them in, the helmsman doing the rest of the work with ease. Even though these ships were much larger than the Venators, they seemed to glide down to their berths like feathers settling down onto the ground.

    Now it was show time for Scyther.

    “Time to strut out stuff” said Terric “I’ll go first, and show you how it’s done” he said to Scyther and she could imagine him having a cheeky grin on his face.

    “OK Terric, impress me with your wisdom”

    “Just let the tugs take the strain for you; they will help guide you in towards your berth. Then just settle back and enjoy the ride, let your helmsman do the work for you. Oh and make sure you nail it, otherwise you go over an inch and you’ll end up hitting the wall, and unfortunately, Madison can’t afford to do that”

    “Don’t remind me” said Madison sadly which made Terric laugh.

    Unstoppable drifted down first, easing down to their docking bay with no fuss whatsoever. It looked impressive from where Scyther was sitting, and she loved Terric even more that they had come down through and into Coruscant without a hitch. Empire’s Will then settled in, making sure not touch any of the walls but with debris still leaking out of his starboard side.

    Now it was Roadblock’s turn.

    “Helm, it’s up to you. Show me and th crowd’s below that we can do this”

    “Yes sir” replied one of the helmsmen who then started communicating to the tugs. Roadblock shuddered and began her descent with gentle nudging from the tugs making sure they were in position. Scyther closed her eyes and tried to keep her stomach from churning. All she could hear now were the voices of her helmsmen.

    “500 meters to dock, flaps open, engines at minimum speed” “Tugs guidance locked in, dead on the nose”

    “400 meters”

    “Control reports all clear. Emergency crews on standby”

    “300 meters”

    “Engine 3 stuttering again, temperature above normal. No, wait, it’s kicked back in.....”

    “200 meters”

    “Ready to commence engine shutdown”

    “100 meters”

    “Defiantly on the nose here, just a little bit to the right...”

    “0, touchdown”

    “Commencing engine and repulsor shutdown”

    The sounds of the engines each shutting down was music to Scyther’s ears, they had made it. Scyther opened her eyes and could breathe a little easier, there was some cheers and blackslapping embraces from the bridge crew.

    “See what did I tell you, piece of cake” said Terric.

    “Terric, will you marry me?” Scyther said.

    “Sorry sir, can’t fraternise with my commanding officer, would you settle for dinner and a movie?”

    “First time you’ve probably turned down a lady, shame Terric, you’ve lost your magic” said Bahari, which caused everyone to laugh and Ivanov to make a noise which was either a laugh or a noise of disgust.

    “OK boys down to business” said Scyther crossing one leg over the other and shifting her position in her chair to be more comfortable.

    “Welcome home boys, congratulations on making it down in one piece. Don’t be packing your bags just yet, we don’t know what will be happening next, so all crews to remain on board, Captain’s to disembark only. I will be championing for us all to get a break, even if it’s just on Coruscant, so you will receive a break, I’ll guarantee it. If we are all allowed to disembark, engineering crew will remain behind to liase with ground crews as to what needs fixing, then you can depart”.

    Scyther paused, and then continued.

    “Furthermore, all major injury cases will be moved off the ships, they will receive better care and treatment here than on board” Scyther felt uneasy about this, especially with Commander Alpha being as dangerous as he was, but it could be a good thing to try to get him back to health.

    “Ivanov, you’d better go and wake up Ensign Charios, Lord Vader will probably want to speak to him soon”. “I will do so at once sir” replied the Ursean.

    “Good, the rest of you just sit tight, once it’s deemed okay, Terric, Ivanov, Arazov, Madison, Bahari and myself will disembark and go and meet the public, or maybe even meet a celebrity”.

    TAG: Lord Admiral Xavier, Lord Vader and Ahsoka, etc.
    Last edited by Corellian_Outrider, Apr 22, 2017
  20. pashatemur Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Jun 21, 2004
    star 4
    OOC: Thank you all for the great posting and J_L that post was terrific. This is a joint post with Corellian_Outrider, for whom I am posting this post with much gratitude. Thank you,
    Pash

    IC: Rowan, Se'Iva, Kal.... and Ariek
    LOCATION: Union, Kalavala, Island estate of Jori Atreides





    Se’Iva helped Rowan with his salvaged debris. She knelt in the sand next to him and leaned down to watch him set pieces out, working out the problem of the ’Valhalla’ and it’s crash. The surf played in the background, a benign lull, but the Cha was becoming increasingly unnerved and pulled her wings in tight till the ends curled up and the silver and dark iridescent spots lay crinkled against her back. The sense of decay grew uncomfortably prominent to her and soon she found herself urging Rowan to the place where they had come ashore the night before and were separated. She urged him quietly, leaning close. “We should go quickly,” she said at his cheek, so close, his beard tickled her cheek.

    With the aid of the Force, they moved with great speed over the sandy strand and back in through wetland brush, through waving fan-like fern and leathery leaves and finally out onto another stretch of sand, this one far more remote than where they had crouched near the tidal pool.

    “Is this the place?” he asked Se, when she stopped to look about, putting Estel down onto the soft but dirty sand.

    Se’Iva nodded and pointed out in the surf. The night tide had washed a few more bits of wreckage ashore and sure enough, out in the deeper water, there was a bit of metal protruding, only intermittently visible between swells.

    That all too familiar uneasy feeling returned to my gut, the sense to never linger in the one spot too long and the urge to keep moving. However, I couldn’t help but feel that it would be an opportunity wasted if we did not check things out further. “….stay here with Estel and keep watch... I’ll see what we’ve got out there….”

    Se’Iva did not feel much like agreeing but he could not both investigate the wreckage and keep surveillance. She acquiesced reluctantly and watched Rowan stride into the surf. Estel paced and circled about her, sitting in the surf at one point to look back to shore and then back over his shoulder to where Rowan had disappeared with a small bit of suds into the water. The cub’s fur was spiked and dripping, he blinked but warily looked to shore, a low growl escaping from his chest. Once more he paced and flicked his tail, then ducked his head and nuzzled against Se’Iva as she crouched low, nearly toppling her into the rocking waves.

    ***

    Under the water, the waves rolling overhead. My legs pumped hard to carry myself against the drag of the tide to reach the debris that glittered under the sun’s rays that filtered through. Breaking the surface, I bobbed there treading water as I took deep breaths, preparing my lungs for a longer dive. Exhaling, I slipped back under with only a small splash from my feet. Surveying the fall out of the debris as I continued down, my eyes start to register common patterns. The way they broad surfaces are aligned, carried by the tide. Armour plating made up the majority, from small shingles to larger panelling, smooth on one side, pitted and scored on the other. Towards the middle and far end of the field I found more and larger debris. Scattered wires, ripped conduit cabling snaked between pieces of broken consoles, displays, chairs and other things mangled beyond my recognition.

    I reached out and grabbed onto one of the consoles, pulling myself down and planted my toes into the sand. The screen was broken, the circuitry exposed, the input device looked familiar... I had been standing in front of this when we made the jump! Letting go, I kicked over to another...a theme was starting to materialise... this all belonged to the bow of the ship.... this was part of the bridge...

    The burning in my lungs reminded me that I did need to breathe every once in a while. Reluctantly, I pushed off and upwards, my gaze watchful as I rose to the surface and noticing that the debris carried over a shallow rise, all signs indicating that it might lead to the location of the crash.

    ***

    Kal knew that tone in Kaylee’s voice.....

    Immediately he set out following his last path when he’d very clearly felt Rowan’s force signature. He thought he’d picked up on it earlier and then suddenly, after hours of fruitless searching, it had spiked... just now.... and then something showed up on the control board. something hard and relatively regular in shape ahead..... metal? he set out to inspect.....

    For those that knew of Kal and there weren’t a lot who could say they did, there was always an air of mystery about him. Possessed of a wry sense of humor, he could seem a man without a care. Always turning up, it seemed, at the last moment and when you needed him most, but his ease and openness could be deceiving. A Former member of the Jedi Council, he spoke very little of his past. Even the very few Kal called friends did not know Kal beyond a certain point. It was said the Coruscant order had come over time to consider him a loose canon. Finding himself at odds more often than not, Kal followed his own path, by destiny or blind luck, to merge at turning points with that of a certain Corellian Jedi, Rowan Halcyon with whom Kal shared a deep friendship and an even deeper history. The only one who knew Kal better was sitting in the cabin beside him, Ariek.

    “Kaylee’s right. I have a feeling those ships trolling the water last night are not going to look too kindly on the ’Icarus’ when they find her.”

    His life partner smirked. Ariek worked at the scanners and glanced to Kal quickly, “That is likely to be quite much sooner than later. They were close in last night.”

    “Yep!” stated Kal quietly, his jaw setting with determination. “Tighten up our heading. We should be near by now,” he said, peering out through the view port at the watery world, light moving down in shafts and mottled by the waves above them. He could make out the larger pieces of debris ahead, laying upright and jagged in the sandy floor beneath them.

    Both of them had this sense, and the usual acidic repartee they shared was much missing, the only sound in the cabin, that of the working and monitoring systems of the tiny vessel.

    ***

    Holding onto the edge of twisted wreckage to maintain orientation under the rolls of the waves, I thought I heard a low noise in the water. Trying to dissect the low frequencies through the compression effect the water has on my ears. Almost mechanical, a continuous thrumming and gradually becoming louder. What if this were the Union’s people investigating? The thought I found unsettling. Peering out into the cerulean void, I did a double take as I spotted something dark jutting out of the sandy floor. Surfacing briefly to breathe, I took in a few deep breaths before kicked back down to investigate the object in question. Swimming in close, I outstretched my hand to touch the surface... it is a piece of ’Valhalla’s armature! I could tell clearly by the design.

    Following along the length, I’ve noticed warping at certain stress points, mangled struts. Trying to wrap my head around the type of forces that assaulted the ship upon striking the ocean. Some of the engine pods must have broken off. There was that sound again.

    What would the Union make of the ’Valhalla’? The ’Icarus’ was an ancient vessel and from the heart of that, ‘Valhalla’ was born. A feat of ingenuity and design culminated together after multiple attempts at reverse engineering... The experimental drives... There were two...

    ‘Valhalla’ was not the only ship of its kind, but nearly. Rowan remembered with chagrin the loss of the first, the ‘Avalon’ - a converted dreadnaught, it had been lost over Corellia. It’s 'sister' ship, ‘Valhalla’ was built from the ground up to render compatibility between systems more effective and to reduce maintenance hassles. It was from researching into the ancient ships: ‘Icarus’ was found on Rowan's father's homeworld, his mother had previously discovered it and kept it hidden. Some recordings of his mother were left on the ‘Icarus’ for him. Rowan found it before the unfortunate trip to Hapes - though, it was not entirely so, for he’d met Se’Iva there.

    Yet another ship, the ‘Daedalus’ was found by Kal elsewhere and at the time, Rowan sent ‘Daedalus’ to Brentalla and his people to look over while he took the ‘Icarus’ to Hapes. After Hapes, Kal, Ariek, Rowan and Se’Iva had gone to Brentalla for help in gaining an audience with the Sith General, A’grive Dür. That was there Se’Iva and Rowan had parted ways. She had intended to speak with the Sith in warning. Still Rowan regretted leaving her there, even if she had requested so. He had to continue on to set things in motion to prepare for liberating Corellia

    I was becoming aware that the thrumming noise of engines was growing louder, it dawned on me that I had taken too long investigating. My focus switched to concern for Se waiting for me. The Duchess’ security must not find Se on her own in the surf, there is no telling what would happen. Rolling downwards and twisting my body around, I performed a U-turn. One swift kick carried me upward into the direction of the current. “OOMPH!”

    Something hard rammed my stomach and carried me backwards, the impact to my gut had me expelling what air I had in reserve. Shaking my head as a stream of bubbles escaped my lips, obscuring my view, I grasped the hard metal surface of what obviously was a submersible and felt myself rising upwards, water steaming around me till I was pushed up out of the water and looking into a viewport two meters back from the round prow on which I was pinned. Suddenly, though, the ship ran aground of a sand bar and I was flung unceremoniously backward.

    The sun above blinding me, a shadow quickly gave me relief and standing on the prow it jumped into the water. “Fancy meeting you here!”

    Smirking, shaking my head as I recognised the voice. “Fancy driving you old bastard, was it your intention to hit me?”

    “NO! That was MY brilliant idea!” said a voice behind him. Ariek leaned out of the sub and grinned mischievously. “You two look sweet!” she offered cheekily as we embraced though I had a mind to round Kal before Ariek took the credit.

    “A lil salty too,” I laughed, shaking my head, water flung out from my hair making them wet.

    Into the water she raced as she watched Rowan lifted above the waves and thrown. “NO!” cried Se’Iva as she watched with alarm the hatch open and a human male jump out to grasp Rowan. Estel mewed and hissed leaping back and forth, not wanting to go further into the surf.

    Shading her eyes she ran into the waves and then lifted into the air to dart with a low hard thrum of her wings toward the submersible hands outstretched before her to send the man with a harsh sharp push backward and into the hull behind him.

    Turning around to face the shore, to find Se’Iva was already dashing over the water on her way to us, Se’Iva stopped short in mid-air. Now she recognize these people were not the aliens, but where Kal and Ariek.

    “Oh, Kal! Your pardon....are you unharmed?! Forgive me!” she begged, looking between Ariek who had jumped out of the hatch to see to Kal and the Jedi.

    “He had it coming” Ariek assured her.

    “My response is ...I am... this place... “ she was trying to say as she touched Kal here and there to see if he was hurt.
    “There is bruised tissue….” she said touching his shoulder. “I can make that better…”

    She felt badly for overreacting and worried over the man as she fussed and the waves dragged at her wings.

    “There is nothing to worry about, just a bump... you should have seen what happened on Vjun.” I heard Kal answer as I reach to help Se’Iva more onto the dorsal platform.

    Lifted onto the decking, she dripped and unfurled her wings to flutter them quickly, their expanse catching the wind and nearly knocking her off the sub, the sun blocked over the four as they rearranged themselves, the water shaken everywhere. “Oh...so ... sorry!” she said again, realizing she was spraying them all.

    Her actions made me smile, I couldn’t help but embraced her. “I’m already wet.”

    Se’Iva smiled at Rowan and shivered. “Brrrrrrr….” While it was sunny and warm, the wind chilled.

    “Estel is still in the surf,” she said nodding toward the cub who ran up and down the strand in distress.

    “Estel…” I had almost forgotten. “I’ll go back and bring him here.”

    Ariek smiled and disappeared into the sub only to reemerge with a towel which she handed to Se’Iva. The Cha’ala quickly wicked her face and chest and passed the towel to Kal as they all watched Rowan retrieve the cub.

    It was no small feat!

    Estel mewed and leaped toward Rowan as he rose from the surf calling softly to him. He gambled happily over the rolling waves to jump up and place both paws on Rowan’s chest and lick the Corellian’s face joyfully.

    Tucked under an arm, Estel, stiffly and slowly paddled one paw and then the next, for he wasn’t very certain at all that connecting his paws with that wet jellied looking green stuff was all that safe a thing to do, but soon he found first his belly and then his back in the drink and if he could have pressed his furry side into Rowan’s, he would have!

    When they arrived at the sub, Estel took heart in “smelling” familiar presences and his stiffly held head was held even higher to make the distance he must still travel even shorter. He paddled in earnest and broke free of Rowan’s grasp to quickly gain purchase on a set of foothold molded into the streamlined surface for the very purpose of giving a wet cub access to dry....ness!

    “Riding a little too high on the water.” I commented from the waves. “Are we stranded?”

    “Ah...give us a sec, keep clear.” Ariek called back as she went inside and took the controls. Gently she opened the
    throttle in reverse.

    I kept myself a few metres from the bow as the intake sucked the water into the hydromagnetic engines. The force of the filtered water turns the drives to generate power before it gets feed back out. I could feel a surge of warm water and grit pushed at me from the directional jets that propel the sub. Clean and efficient, one of Kaylee’s own designs. It was meant for small teams to be inserted undetected from the moon pool on Valhalla’s belly.

    The churn of water increased as the submersible shuddered and strained reverse. After several seconds, the jets were slowed as the engine was shut down. “Engine is off. We’re stuck.”

    Swimming to the bow, my feet touched a sand bar that held the sub. There was a splash as Kal had jumped down beside me. “I got this side, you take the other.”

    Digging with our hands, we shifted armloads of sand out from under the stern to create a drop and form a ramp.

    “Kaylee’s worried about you…..” Kal started to make conversation.

    “We can’t have that…” I smiled as I heard her name, I could tell by his tone that she was safe. “Listen... Kal... I want you to do me a favour.”

    “What’s this favour of yours, Outrider?” He gave me a wave to head back before he himself turned and trudged back to the bow.

    I started to feel water logged, my legs heavy. Dropping to the water, I let a surging wave carry me part of the way to the bow. “Take Estel to Kaylee, tell her you found us, to wait.... I have to go back.”

    He turned his head slowly and gave me a look as though I was out of my mind. “Why?”

    “Look at what I’m wearing.” I gestured to the shorts before finding my footing and grabbed onto the bow. “I don’t normally wear these while in command of a starship... I have to go back.”

    He pointed over his shoulder and in the direction of the two women on the submersible. “Well, I wasn’t going to make any statements, but Se’Iva’s threads are missing a few more stitches than you are togs. That’s a flimsy excuse. There is something else isn’t there?”

    I didn’t answer, only nodded, I looked back out to the shore.

    “When ever you are ready. Just like old times, lil’ brother!”

    I could tell that Kal wanted in, always itching to join the fray.

    “Not this time, Kal.”

    “Hey but-”

    “I’m sorry Kal, but no. It would complicate matters further.”

    “Rowan... always in trouble.” Kal muttered under his breath and shook his head.

    “Always.”

    While the Kal and Rowan dug the submersible’s keel out of the sandbar, Se’Iva scanned the shore and the horizon and gave a look up to the skies above. The sub rocked in the waves as the two Jedi worked side by side and spoke in muted tones. Se’Iva bit her lip and squinted at the glare, once again taking stock in their situation, seeing no overt surveillence.

    The sub lurched free and soon Kal stood on the decking beside the Cha’ala. The two “brothers” said a quick farewell and arranged for contingencies.

    Se’Iva’s wings drooped.

    “Come on, Se’! We’ll be alright,” I told her quietly as I patted Estel on the head and scratched between his ears. He put up a struggle being forced back into another submersible, poor cub!

    ***

    Standing waist deep in the water, the sun on my face. I smiled reassuringly as I watched the submersible leave. It was not only for them but for me too.

    "Ol'val...doaba... min dul'skal," I whispered, lingering until sight transitioned to feeling. “Norolim.”

    They are safe, that is all that matters to me. Knowing they had survived, having them near, I feel relieved and a renewed sense of hope. Reluctantly, I pulled away from the vista and started back up to shore.

    I found myself back through the brush and onto a clearing and pathway that must lead back to the villa. Exotic flowering bushes lined either side of the path, the sun heated pavement still hot to my feet. The winding path took me around past an enclosed area, sparing a curious glance, it looked to me that they were recreational courts.

    The cool breeze lessened and the heat was more noticeable on my bare skin. Nearing the villa, I felt my muscles flex, making me realise how grateful I was to see those from whom I’d been separate, but now I had to put them from my mind. Pulling a palm frond from the garden, I brushed off the sand in the lawn before entering the stately villa and in spite of the few and inevitable staff I encountered, made my way quickly to my room and showered the salty water off, dressed and made my way straight to the library.

    TAG: villa and Jori
    Last edited by Corellian_Outrider, Apr 22, 2017
  21. TheAdmiral Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Mar 28, 2004
    star 4
    OOC: This is a joint post between me and Pasha, thank you for the good time writing this!

    IC: duchess Jori Atreides, Admiral Veroti

    on-board "Resolute"


    Admiral Veroti was now quite eager to transport this strange entourage to Coruscant. It was reported that the lockdown on Imperial Center had been lifted. He shared a few terse words with Grande Admiral Teshik. It was highly unusual to speak directly with the formidable old hero of the Republic. He was not a man who cared much for chat. A highly political figure, Teshik let you know he knew the value of silence.

    Comm-ing at the door of the stateroom she'd been afforded on his ship, Veroti stood before the guard, and straightened as he waited for the Duchess' leisure in giving him entry.

    Mitternacht studied Admiral Veroti without making any unnecessary moves. The man seemed not to paying much attention to him, maybe he had grown used to the fact that Mitternacht was a reanimated corpse. After a few seconds of silence it turned its head to the side towards the duchess. She wore a thin smile on her lips.

    "Let him in, Mitternacht," she said with a silky voice "after all it is his ship..."

    "As you wish, Your Ultimacy..." came the mechanical answer then the ghola moved to the right so that Admiral Veroti could enter the room.
    Jori stood up to greet the newcomer, her smile broadening.

    "Admiral Veroti, it is a pleasure to see you again. I hope you bring us good news..."

    "I bring you news, Duchess, whether it is good or not, I shall leave to you." He said stepping in cripsly and giving a curt bow. His nose threatened to wrinkle at the slight stench of decayed flesh the ghola exuded. Veroti did not let it do so.

    "We shall reach Imperial Center in another hour. I trust my crew have tended your needs satisfactorily. I apologize for the want of comfort. We are not a consular craft."

    Jori's expression did not change "Well, I think this piece of news is good, at least the events are moving forward." the smile disappeared slowly but she was still in a good mood "Don't worry about the comfort, after all we are meeting in a bit of an extraordinary situation."

    "Ah, your pardon, Your Grace, relations may be strained, however, we needn't be uncivil," said Veroti with a thin smile.

    "Wisely put Admiral..." she paused for a second "Being civil could be a good start for the negotiations, given the current strain..."

    He rocked shallowly on his heels for a moment and then nodded before turning slightly to walk in a short circumscribed circle. "Yes... well, I was not sent for the purpose of negotiations. I was to intercept. It is unfortunate matters were not dealt with before your departure and so much could have been avoided, but we cannot alter the past, only the future. So, in my debriefing, naturally, our exchange may carry some weight. I shall note your compliance and cooperation."

    Jori nodded in agreement "Indeed unfortunate events led us to this situation." she smiled at the Admiral "Thank you for your understanding."

    "Of course," he said still facing away from her. "May I ask, Your Grace, you seem an astute leader, one who commands loyalty and respect, how is it, such an unfortunate oversight occurred?"

    The duchess could sense a verbal trap in the man's words "Well I could simply say 'No one is perfect', but this would not answer your question." using her amusement to cover the nervousness she felt "The problem was the overzealous attempts of my subordinates to keep me protected. Bare in mind that those ships you encountered in Derra system were the minimum required for such visits. At least for our protocols, as there is still an ongoing conflict. It is very rare for the leaders of the Union to travel outside its boundaries and we were unsure about the size of the retinue as in our previous journeys there were no problems with a similar size escort."

    "You are referring to your journey to Ursa System." said Veroti raising a brow, a wry smile on his lips.

    Jori nodded in agreement.

    "It was at the leisure of his Imperial Majesty such leave was given, but this time, your ducal essay was accompanied by other diplomatic ... oversights, one of which seems to be connected with enemies of Imperial peace and the other, flagrant actions taken by your Ambassador to reject direct orders of Imperial authorities in Imperial space, perhaps it was simply an unfortunate confluence of bad judgements, but you understand, we have been at war for some time. It would hardly be appropriate to our security to overlook such a .... confluence," Veroti said politely as he turned to regard the Union Duchess.

    It seemed that the first thing that will need clearing out will be this incident. She made a mental note to consider executing the Lord Advisor if and when he returned to the Union, no matter what Dennii thinks about that. Speaking of Dennii, she will probably be another complication to the now complex peace talks.

    "Yes, I understand that, I know how our defense forces will react to an outsider intrusion..." it was needless to say that they would be shooting first, and asking questions later "Regarding the Lord Advisor, I agree that he overstepped his mandate."

    The Admiral bowed his head to one side, again raising a brow, his fingers laced at his back, he walked a few paces in silence as he considered the Duchess’ responses.

    “Oh yes... well, he must be quite an interesting person, quite accomplished to hold the position of Lord Advisor in your government. I’m told he is rather senior in his years. What’s his name, again?” queried the Admiral turning to regard the flaxen-headed beauty.

    Jori was not sure whether the man was being sarcastic and she felt annoyed when someone was playing tricks with her. ‘I have grown spoilt and complacent because of the sycophants that surround me...’ she thought bitterly. “Eddard Dondarion. The Dondarions usually were the advisers for us Atreides. As a matter of fact my father was the one who put him in that position and I start to regret his decisions.”

    “I see. I fancy myself a bit of an historian, Your Grace. I find this all very fascinating. Well, you seem a very pleasant person. I hope, for your own sake, that this matter can be put to rest amicably for all involved. It sounds, perhaps, that your Advisor might well be approaching his dotage. The flesh is all to weak, even when the sinews are still hale. The mind and soul are subject to the fragility that is the brain,” said Veroti solicitously turning about again and picking up one of the sparse bits of domesticity staged in the room to create a sense of luxury, a small statuette of an Eriaduine woman, dressed in ceremonial toga and holding a cup aloft as if toasting.

    “Though this Dondarion is exceptional in another way too. He’s a ... Jedi,” the Admiral state rounding a decorative and low table. “Isn’t that a bit out of the ordinary for your Union. So closed a society to have a Jedi in the midst of the courts so redolent with the influence of the bene gesserit?”

    Jori inclined her head slightly while observing the Admiral. She almost chuckled when he said that she was a pleasant person as the young duchess was used to receive other types of compliments. After the man finished talking she paused for a second before replying.

    “Regarding the first issue that you mentioned. I am required to defend him even knowing that he made a mistake to avoid losing legitimacy. It will be too much for the other Houses especially after the arrest of archduke Moritani. To hand over two heads of big houses to the outsiders will send the wrong signals to the people of the Union...”

    “Oh, certainly,” he interjected. “Being a commanding officer, I can understand the delicacy of your situation, Your Grace. You find me sympathetic as to your situation on a personal level.” he said with a slight smile.

    Jori waited patiently for him to finish and smiled back.

    “It is good to know, being pressured from both sides leaves me little space for maneuvering. And adding to that the cultural differences. These will be interesting negotiations for sure.” she chuckled sweetly “And for your second question, the answer is quite simple: the Dondarions were exiled several thousand years ago along with the Atreides and decided not to come back. Having him as an Advisor is more symbolic than his actual usefulness.” she paused adding a ‘mysterious tint’ to her smile “You seem very well informed about our society.”

    “Encountering other cultures is something I consider a perk of my profession, Your Grace and ...it is my duty to familiarize myself with every aspect of any mission it is my command to oversee,” he said lifting his chin slightly and standing a bit taller, his crisp uniform filling out slight more as he imposed himself in habit when speaking of his duty. It was a sort socialized habit amongst those whose lives were spent in such hierarchies as the military comprised.

    “As for cultural differences...are we so different? We are both mammals, human...perhaps the differences are not so deep,” he suggested, pausing to meet her gaze and hold it firmly. “Still, as you say, there is enough in variation which the map of politics imposes and we must not discount it. Thus, maneuvering, as you say, becomes a very sly game and I suggest that sometimes, actions are taken which on the surface seem a wrong choice which are actually, in the long term, not. Creative thinkers sometimes seem the most foolish, and your father, beg pardon, Duchess, cannot have been such a fool and produced such an intelligent child as his daughter!,” the Admiral countered softly.

    “An admirable trait...” she chuckled “No pun intended.” and with a lazy gesture she took the glass that she had left on the table next to her chair. Then she just sipped while still observing Veroti with her blue eyes. The duchess rotated the glass in her hand with her long and delicate fingers “My father was not a fool, only naive and maybe too good for the Union. That is what killed him. He was too soft with the other Houses so the baron Ordonnen seized the moment.”

    “Or were the other Houses too harsh for their own good, Madame? You miss your good father...don’t you?” he asked, bowing his head slightly so that he might follow her gaze as she played at sipping.

    “Actually they were not that harsh, usually a coup like that ends up more violently.” she was trying to find out whether that was a trick question “Of course I miss him, if it wasn’t for the armored speeder that day I would have perished as well. You know I lost both my parents to the political games in the Union.”

    “Ah...there, I’ve given offense and I meant none!” he said apologetically, breaking in. “Forgive my intruding in on your private grief. Political position is a very difficult one. I assure you, I did not mean to cause you any discomfort, merely to express understanding. You are alone...”

    Jori smiled sadly “No need for apologies, I had to get over it for the good of the Union.”

    “Yes, duty!”

    She nodded “Duty it is indeed.”

    “Though a lot of people had to pay for what happened.” Jori added.

    Veroti raised a brow as he listened attentively.

    “They made choices with which you did not concur, the results of which you determined required stringent consequences?” he asked.

    “Well they had committed capital offenses by betraying their ruling House. Besides I had to make sure they won’t try something like that again.”

    “Yes, the punitive motivator...and the Lord Advisor, will there be punitive consequences for his actions?” Veroti asked. “Well, provided he is returned to your custody. You see, he is one of an outlawed order, Your Grace. You are prepared he may not be remanded to the care of the Union?”

    “Yes I know, but that does not mean that I won’t try to bring him back. Time will tell. For us these sectarian divisions are rather strange and I personally did not care much whether he was a Jedi or a Sith. For us he is just a psyker, a person with certain abnormal psychic abilities.” she paused for a second “I used to have a friend who was, how did you call them?...A Jedi, yes, that is right who tried to explain the differences. Not that it made any sense to me as a person from the Union.”

    “Well, the matter is not a philosophical one, but a matter purely political.” said Veroti, matter of factly. “The Jedi were mandated with the task of acting in a custodial fashion, guarding the old Republic and it’s governmental structure. They were caught, as the Emperor so witnessed in a treasonous act to seize the reigns of government and assassinate our political leader. It’s really very simple. As to Sith, I know very little except that they are an splinter order whose philosophy purports to run counter to that of the Jedi and which is based on an ancient humanoid species culture. It’s not that foreign a concept is it?”

    “Well the Jedi’s actions are surely to be condemned, though I am worried for the safety of my friend. She is very dear to me. But this is another matter. I personally don’t care much about their divisions as long as they do their jobs.”

    “I see, well, so your stance will rest on your Lord Advisor making a mistake of judgement?” asked Veroti for clarification.

    “Yes and taking into consideration the political situation in the Union.” she nodded.

    “And why do you think he made this mistake in judgement, if I may ask, Your Grace?”

    “I can never be sure, since his return from the land of the dead he had been acting strangely.” she shrugged slightly

    “Ah, but the concept of responsibility is not alien to your Union, is it,” said Veroti smiling gently and leaning down slightly to meet the Duchess at her eye level.

    “It is not, just can’t tell why he did what he did. Everyone in the Union has their own agenda, maybe he was playing his part.” she stared back at him.

    “That will be a difficult position in which to be, my Lady. Very difficult. I have come in this short time to care for you and I worry the Senate will not look well upon your explanation. Yet, I cannot say for certain. Of course, your person will carry some sway. You are amiable, coherent. Perhaps a remedy has not yet made itself known. Perhaps the Advisor will feel his duty to you and speak words that will clarify.” Veroti offered what he could.

    “I think I remember something he said that he did that to protect the crew of the shuttle as they are not used to be bossed around by outsiders. After all they are serving on my personal ship. I know this sounds absurd.” Jori paused for a second “From what I read about the situation and from what I was told by the Lord Advisor was that the Queen of Naboo broadcasted his identity in an open channel. By all means, I am not trying to belittle his responsibility and transfer it to another person.”

    Veroti smiled wryly. The Naboo were known not to be enthusiastic supporters of their Empire and they were suspected of being Jedi sympathizers. “The Queen must have had her reasons. To make that man’s affiliation known was not a small matter. Perhaps something occurred to make her feel unsafe. Perhaps his identity was about to become an issue and rather than the Naboo being called into question for harboring one, they decided to declare the knowledge. You see, the Naboo have their own position to consider, Madame. It is a diffficult time for everyone and so...your Lord Advisor may have been caught in nothing more than political happenstance. However, this does not explain his connection with Arrissa Fields. That is another thing, entirely.”

    “I see, I only want to add that several days before the incident the Lord Advisor met with Lord Vader and his identity was known to him.”

    “Was it? I did not know,” said Veroti curiously. “Is there proof of their having met?”

    “Well I was on a visit to Kavala along with the Lord Advisor and they met in an informal meeting. I wanted to be completely honest and show that we are not hiding anyone.”

    “Ah, well, then clearly the Executor must know more than I concerning the Lord Advisor. So you see, there is perhaps an answer to clarify. No need to worry over much. We shall all be calm and this will be nothing more than a momentary misunderstanding!” said Veroti bringing his hands together before him to a soft clap. “It may be, the Executor knows why he was involved in Arrissa Fields, for that matter.”

    Jori shrugged again “Probably, the whole situation could have been avoided if it wasn’t for our pride and the indoctrination to which we subject our people.”

    “But don’t you think we have communicated well?” said Veroti stepping forward a bit.

    “Well considering that Admiral Xavier was ready to launch all fighters and use the smaller vessels that accompanied the carriers as rams I think we communicated quite well.” her smile appeared on her lips again.

    “I’m glad it did not come to that, my Lady,” said Veroti with a knowing smile.

    “Me too, I hope during this visit to avoid similar conflicts in the future.” she took her glass again and sipped.

    “Yes, Madame, a wise tac,” concurred Veroti. He bowed his head courteously. “I should return to the bridge, we should be approaching Sector Zero soon.”

    Jori smiled and put the now empty glass on the table “Excellent, I will be right here if you need me.”

    Veroti smiled and approaching took her hand to bow over it deeply, in time honored chivalrous decorum. “Your Grace.”

    She was taken aback, it was rarely someone touched her, well with some exceptions, few in the Union were allowed to do so, provided they knew her identity. Nevertheless she hid her surprise and replied with a courteous nod. “Admiral.”

    Veroti did not need Force sensitivity to sense her slight withdrawal. He had acted according to the customs in which he had been schooled. She was no worse for wear nor the diplomacy forsaken because of his calculated risk.
    He rose and lingered for a moment catching the beautiful Duchess’ gaze and he smiled slowly, finally letting go the hand he held still, saluted crisply, bowed again stepping back and then spun on his heel in military fashion and exited.

    Jori was sitting there watching the man exiting the room. She stifled a chuckle, the whole conversation was most entertaining. Excitement started building up inside her, this visit will be very interesting. At least a break from the tedious everyday life in the Union and the pathetic bickering over pieces of land that were the cause of conflict for milennia and the lack of imagination of the heads of the Houses. And now all it needs is an favorable outcome.

    TAG: To be continued
    Last edited by Corellian_Outrider, Apr 22, 2017
  22. pashatemur Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Jun 21, 2004
    star 4
    OOC: This is another joint post with C_O. In the interest of getting things moving by providing needed characterization to support continuing story arcs, I have left this post all in one piece.

    IC: Anakin, Celeste, Sophia, Maruuke, Vos, and Ahsoka
    LOCATION: the terminal at the Emperor Palpatine Space Port and the Ursean Embassy, Coruscant


    Just now he swallowed. His heart raced and he felt his hand hot and damp, adjusting his clasp of Ahsoka?s. There were too many people ?too many.

    If they could just skip this part!

    As if concurring, Artoo shifted from one treaded foot to the other and let out annoyed ?blat?.

    He closed his eyes for a moment and didn?t care that the two who stood beside him could feel his nervousness.

    Large jointed appendages began to extend from regular points along each side of the slip; magnetic clamps that would help anchor the large ships, each joint equipped with pneumatic shock absorbers to reduce both movement and the destructive forces of movement, in this case, should a tectonic shift take place or some of the enormous struts supporting the ships from beneath suffer failure.

    As the ships engines were shut down one by one, the noise and rumble began to subside, only to be replaced by the sound of the working elements of the space port.

    Was there life after war? The question wasn?t really whether there was or not, but how one was to live after surviving fallen comrades and enemies alike. Why had he survived?

    His brow furrowed as he felt the press of memory and thought with irony, /?Because I am the Chosen One!? No, I am a person, not an ideal, not a thing, not a monster. I am flesh and blood. I am ? Force open the damn doors!?/

    Guilt and doubt settled like dust as the ghosts of the past came unbidden. Why now? He wondered.

    War changes you ? living on the blade?s edge gave you alertness. Gave you certainty, confidence and ? the charged awareness of living in the stream of all that power, the Force ? it was addictive, but it also obscured one?s ability to think for the long term.

    How did one live in the intimate after all that?

    Who he was a week or two ago, he was no longer, nor were Celeste and Sophia. He?d missed their life experience, become detached. Even now, Padme?s children felt less and less his. They were growing, learning, building memories that did not include him, in spite of his promises, in spite of his love for them. The threads were slender and tenuous. How tenuous were the threads that knitted Celeste and Sophia, connected them to him?

    They would face one another with the memory of love, having to start all over. The concept was not foreign to him. Jedi were trained to be aware of the psychological effects of war. Who had he been to them mired as he was inside that tightly bound shell of rage and self-loathing? Who was it they loved, he could not help but ask himself.

    How must he ?fit? his family now, after all this ?.movement?

    He didn?t want Ahsoka to misunderstand what he was feeling ? and he knew she could feel his turmoil, that he felt guilty for sharing himself in his bond so immediately and deeply with his prodigal Padawan, but now stood here in doubt about his place in his own family. Such bonds shared between a Master and a Padawan often did not require spoken word.

    The words between husband and wife and father and daughter were likely to be awkward and inadequate.

    Yet words were needed, there was so much between them to convey and not enough time between duty and reconciliation and he loved them so, his heart ached.

    Attachment!

    The protective windows held back a rush of steam. The public address system pinged and scratched with a procedural warning to stand clear of the gate, as the gangway bridge was extended. After the low pitched rumble beneath his feet sounded, the seldom used gateway doors of the space-going Mavras Maelstrom on the other side of the heavy duty metal pleated and covered gangway began to open to the repetitive blare of warning klaxons. The lig
  23. Ominous Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Jul 30, 2004
    star 4
    OOC:
    Sorry for the delay, work has been crazy. I will post today. Ominous
  24. Ominous Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Jul 30, 2004
    star 4
    IC: General Torian
    Location: Yavin IV, temple chambers


    It had been decided then and the others were waiting on Torian to give the stamp of approval. He hated to waste good people, but it was necessary to find out more about the events on Coruscant. With Matrix and Biggs going, the General was confident they would return safe. He stood and walked away from the table, rubbing his temples. It had been a long day up to this point and he was ready to end the debates within these dark walls.

    ?Mission approved. Gather all the necessary equipment and supplies. Keep in constant contact with us here. We will be expecting daily reports at the same time of day. This will ensure that you are safe and not compromised.?

    Now, with that out of the way, he must deal with Yueh. Ben would be a good man to have with him on the operation Torian had in mind. They would attack an Imperial convoy and ?unload? their supplies.

    TAG: Everyone involved
  25. TheAdmiral Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Mar 28, 2004
    star 4
    OOC: This is a joint post between me and Corellian_Outrider, it was a pleasure working on it!

    IC: Lord Commander Basil Xavier (NRC), Rowan Halcyon, Maya Fyodorovna (NRC)

    Location:
    Year: 1113 ATC - (2519 BBY)


    It was a sunny day in Kala City, there was no clouds in the vicinity of the capitol. The sky was light blue and the weather was warm. After the long cold season this was a pleasant surprise for the Kalanites, as the citizens jokingly called themselves. The splendid weather was in contrast to the general feeling of unease on the planet Kaladan. The news from the outside the Union were grave, the war with the Sith was not going well for the Republic. Some of the Houses Major and Minor were considering siding with the dark armies as to prevent the future catastrophe that will come when they overthrow the Republic. The leading house that proposed this idea was the Ordonnen.

    The ruling house Corrino tried to balance between the factions despite the fact that it traditionally was tied to the houses Atreides and Dondarion. No one wanted to commit forces to support neither side of this Galactic conflict. For now the Union nominally supported the Republic with supplies and weapons. Every day outsider ships were coming and leaving Kala City spaceport with the ?goods? to be sent to the front line. The Atreides were considering sending humanitarian aid to the devastated worlds.

    A new wave of cargo ships had arrived in the last hour. Lord Commander Basil Xavier was walking among them checking their names looking for one ship in particular - ?Raptor?s Fury?. On it was supposed to be one of his good friends, Rowan Seiriol-Nye. They haven?t seen each other for a while now and hearing that he would be coming to Kaladan was clearly a sign from the Greater Good because Basil was getting engaged to a pretty girl and wanted to present her to the man who saved his life.

    He passed by several more ships until he found the Corellian light-stock freighter that he was looking for. There were other personnel from the port, people he didn?t know, going around doing the regular cargo procedures. So Basil stood by and waited, knowing that Rowan was a psyker and he could probably feel his presence and show himself.


    Standing in the cargo hold, my hand at the controls of the lift watching as the cargo was being lowered to the landing below. This was one of many transfers I have been doing for the past few weeks now for several worlds. The war has affect many worlds, trading lanes disrupted and the flow of resources. A cargo hauler can make a decent living doing runs like these, some play for both sides for greed... I choose the jobs that gives aid to those that need it. A heavy thud as the lift had reached the bottom and the sound of the container being taken off.

    I whistled and called out through the opening. ?Aiight! That?s the last one.?

    Grinning as I saw a hand came in view and gave me the thumbs up gesture, I hit the release and was greeted by the groan of hydraulics as the lift rose back into place. My eyes glance over the remaining cargo in the hold, instructions on the side to deliver them to a small colony located out near the Tingel Arm. Sighing, I was not looking forward to making that trip, my armament needs to be restocked if I were to get by the pirates that claim that region of space. Leaving the hold and locking it down before exiting the ship, I stopped by the landing gear and leaned against the strut as I watched the staff load the supplies onto a cart.

    Furrowing my brow, my gaze picked out a familiar face waiting not far off from the ship. Smiling inside, rarely do I get a chance to run into a friendly face. Pushing off the strut, I made my way over to the uniformed man, a small smile played out on my face, which some would consider to be a rare sight to see.

    ?Khasaan?l....? I extended my hand.

    Basil grinned upon seeing his friend. His medals and uniform decorations glinted from the sun. The Lord Commander was a tall and burly man in his early thirties.
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