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Saga - ST Comes with the Territory - Fanfic Olympics Pentathlon, OC New Republic soldiers

Discussion in 'Fan Fiction- Before, Saga, and Beyond' started by Thumper09, Aug 8, 2021.

  1. Thumper09

    Thumper09 Force Ghost star 4

    Registered:
    Dec 9, 2001
    Title: Comes with the Territory
    Author: Thumper09
    Characters: OC New Republic Special Forces soldiers
    Timeframe: ST-era, before TFA
    Notes: This is my 2021 Fanfiction Summer Olympics Pentathlon featuring a team of New Republic Special Forces soldiers called the AT-STs, short for "All-Terrain Sneaking Troops." I originally created the AT-STs for an OC Challenge vignette titled "Erosion," which takes place during TFA. The entries in this pentathlon take place prior to "Erosion," and knowledge of that story is not needed here. Each entry here is independent of the others.

    Constructive criticism is welcome. Star Wars is owned by Disney, etc. etc.

    Team Roster:
    Inga Sellen, female Human
    Telnak Daux, female Quarren
    Grawurra, male Wookiee
    Relpoek, male Toydarian

    ---------------------

    Links to specific event posts:

    110 Word Hurdle
    Prime Time Coverage

    400 Word Cross Country
    200 Freestyle

    1500 Word Dash

    ----------------------
     
    Last edited: Aug 22, 2021
  2. Thumper09

    Thumper09 Force Ghost star 4

    Registered:
    Dec 9, 2001
    110 Word Hurdle: 110 words in which the name or names of your character, couple, family, or friendship aren’t mentioned.


    Lieutenant Colonel Justamere tiredly leaned back in her chair and stared out her office window on Hosnian Prime. No one had warned her that this position with New Republic Special Forces would require so much paperwork.

    Her door chime beeped. “Come in,” she called, welcoming any distraction.

    Captain Prennit entered, and the Intel officer nodded in greeting. “Colonel.”

    “Have a seat, Captain,” Justamere replied. “What’ve you got?”

    Prennit held up a datapad. “We have some leads on possible First Order activity in a system in the Unknown Regions. We’ve got very little data on the planet itself and don’t know what to expect.”

    “Want the usual team?”

    “The usual team.”


    ---------------------------

    Prime Time Coverage: 500+ words of action, adventure, or excitement with your chosen character, friendship, family or couple as the star.
    (Note: As usual, that "+" sign is like a beacon to me. This entry is fairly long.)


    Inga Sellen did her best to look nonchalant and bored even as she internally shouted at the computer to complete the upload faster. When she got back to something even remotely resembling civilization, she was going to find the nearest New Republic slicer and tell him in no uncertain terms that they had to make their virus programs a lot smaller if they wanted people like her to survive planting them in First Order computers. Maybe she would even let one of her teammates give the slicers a live-weapons demonstration of what could happen in the time required to upload every additional gigabyte they insisted was necessary for their programs to have. Something like that might motivate a bit more streamlining and a few more questions of, “Do we really need this additional feature in our spy virus?”

    The personnel lounge inside the small First Order outpost was nearly empty, and most of the scattered chairs and tables were vacant. Two First Order scientists were sitting on opposite sides of the lounge and reading datapads. Sellen had tried hard to not give them a reason to pay any attention to her, especially since she’d noticed they wore small sidearms and she didn’t want to know why scientists would be armed inside their own outpost. Several general-access computer terminals resided in the center of the lounge as well, but Sellen was the only person using one. She hadn’t liked the fact that only one door opened into this room, thus limiting her options, but these were the easiest base computers for her to get to.

    Opposite the entrance, the lounge’s large panoramic windows offered a breathtaking view of the vista around them. The base was built vertically on the side of a snow-capped mountain that was part of a large range, and the lounge was several stories up from the ground level. At this height, Sellen could see the tops of many of the tall, skinny trees that comprised the mountain range’s dense forest below the tree line. The closest ones nearly brushed the outside of the windows. The afternoon sun cast long shadows in the forested valley below, and two of the planet’s six small moons hung in the daytime sky above the mountain peaks. Down in the valley, the river that supplied the base with hydroelectric power was too close to see from her seat at the computer.

    The small, brown-haired woman would have enjoyed the scenery if she wasn’t so concerned whether this blasted file would upload before anyone caught her or not.

    Sellen’s hidden earpiece crackled, and then a question came in from Grawurra. The Wookiee was visually monitoring her from the trees outside and wanted to know if she was almost done.

    Sellen didn’t verbally reply. Instead, she took her outwardly bored stance to the next level by quietly yawning and stretching. During the stretch, she casually made their affirmative hand signal with the hand nearest the windows. Then she rolled her shoulders, straightened the itchy First Order technician’s uniform she was wearing, and returned to watching the program’s percentage slowly creep upward. As the only Human member of the New Republic Special Forces team that had dubbed themselves the AT-STs, short for “All-Terrain Sneaking Troops,” it usually fell to her to be the one going inside any First Order facilities on missions. Everyone on the team had their role to play and their own unique capabilities to offer no matter what they faced on any planet they found themselves on, but sometimes she wished she could swap roles for just one mission.

    At long last, the computer beeped to signal its completion. Sellen let out a breath and stashed the datacard with the virus program in a pocket. She quickly and discreetly hand-signaled her success to Grawurra, then stood and turned to walk out.

    A First Order officer chose that moment to enter the lounge. He studied Sellen curiously as she approached. Hoping to be as unremarkable as possible, she saluted and offered a respectful “Sir” while she headed for the door behind him.

    “Wait a minute,” the officer commanded. A knot formed in Sellen’s stomach, but she obeyed. This might be nothing. She hoped it was nothing.

    The officer was still staring at her, though the curiosity seemed to be evaporating. “Who are you?”

    “Private Terris, sir,” Sellen replied.

    “I’ve never seen you here before,” he said.

    Mentally, Sellen cursed in five different languages. She hated small bases. Everyone else said that large bases were the hardest to infiltrate because of the greater physical area and additional security, but they were wrong. The worst places to infiltrate were the small ones where everyone knew each other and a stranger couldn’t blend in with the background.

    “I’m pretty new here, sir. I just arrived recently,” she said.

    Grawurra’s voice rumbled in her ear asking if she was okay, but she couldn’t answer him.

    The officer narrowed his eyes. “Try telling that to someone who doesn’t track all of our very limited inbound and outbound ships and what they’re bringing.” Sellen remembered a couple more alien curse words she’d forgotten. The officer raised his voice to speak to the other two people in the room. “Benso. Nieran. Have either of you met Private Terris before?”

    Sellen could suddenly feel the others’ attention on her, and she tried to look friendly and nonthreatening. “Sir, I’m sure there’s some--”

    “I haven’t,” one of the scientists said, cutting her off. He’d walked around and now came to stand beside the officer, further blocking Sellen’s access to the exit door and the corridor beyond. He was scrutinizing her.

    “Me neither,” said the other. He had also stood and was walking slowly toward the other two while keeping a cautious distance between himself and Sellen.

    “We’d better get this straightened out, then,” said the officer. He raised his comlink and said, “Security to the lounge imm--”

    Sellen’s first strike knocked the comlink out of his hand before he could finish the sentence. She immediately followed with a punch with her offhand to his solar plexus. The officer staggered back. She tried to complete the maneuver with a side kick to the other man who’d been standing beside the officer, but he’d jumped back just far enough to make the kick only a glancing blow. He reached for his sidearm.

    Ahead of her, the third man ran a few steps and hit the control to close the door to the corridor, sealing all four of them inside the lounge. He also pulled out his small blaster.

    Sellen knew what unwinnable odds looked like, and this was it. She briefly advanced on her would-be kick victim to give herself a half instant to think. She was close enough to the first two that the third wouldn’t risk firing yet, and she tried a few well-placed blows to disarm her target, but he was skilled enough or quick enough to avoid the worst of them. At least it kept him sufficiently off-balance so he couldn’t fire at her either.

    After one more particularly aggressive blow pushed her target backward and threw him even more off-balance, Sellen took the only chance she had. She pulled her own blaster as she spun and sprinted toward the large viewing windows and fired for all she was worth at the one immediately in front of her. It exploded outward in a hail of shards, and cold air rushed in. She shoved her blaster in her holster. With one more step she jumped onto what was left of the low windowsill, and then with all her might she launched herself outward into thin air.

    As she hung suspended for one long instant where she second-guessed every decision she’d ever made in her life that brought her to this moment, she heard surprised Shyriiwook curses being screamed into her ear. Then gravity reasserted itself and Sellen plunged toward the treetops.

    She blindly reached out to grab any tree limb or trunk that might save her as her feet crashed through smaller branches that tore at her body. All at once, something dark and massive slammed into her from the side with enough force to change her trajectory, and it grabbed her. After a tumbling, chaotic scramble, her descent abruptly stopped. Grawurra had her, though he was in an extremely awkward, untenable position trying to maintain his one-armed grip around her waist while his other hand held the creaking upper branch of a tree. His feet scrambled for purchase on the trunk or another branch or anything they could reach. Meanwhile, he was telling her exactly how idiotic she was and that she might give him a bit of notice next time if she didn’t want to fall to her well-deserved death.

    “Sorry, sorry! Didn’t exactly have time!” Sellen said breathlessly. Dangling helplessly in the air far above the ground like that was high on her list of positions to not be in, so she tried to maneuver enough to grab hold of Grawurra or the branch or anything.

    His hold on her slipped significantly, and it was only at the last second that his fingers managed to entwine themselves around her belt and prevent her from falling. He snapped at her to stay still. She obeyed.

    Angry voices shouted from the direction of the destroyed lounge window, and a couple blaster shots flew through the air and impacted the surrounding trees only a couple meters above Grawurra. Wood splintered and rained down on the pair. The next blaster bolts were much closer. Grawurra scrambled a little more desperately for some type of solid hold to allow him to move or climb.

    Looking down, Sellen caught a glimpse of the river. They were still higher above it than she preferred, but the river wound almost directly below them. She groaned, dreading this.

    “Can you get us to the river?” she asked. Her voice was almost drowned out by another blaster bolt hitting the tree.

    Grawurra looked, and then he snarled. He aimed a glance down at Sellen that suggested he was going to enjoy what he was about to do. She was afraid of that.

    With an effort, Grawurra swung his legs upward and looped them around the branch he was holding, then he let go of the branch with that hand and instead let himself hang upside-down while holding Sellen in a better grip with both hands. He swung back and forth a little to get some momentum, and then Sellen felt his massive muscles strain with exertion the instant before he flung her through the trees toward the river.

    As Sellen again crashed through branches on her way to the ground, she had just enough time to rap her earpiece to activate the comm system. “Two, we need some help in the river!” Then she plunged into the cold water.

    Her training was the only thing that kept her from panicking as she was abruptly and completely submerged in the icy mountain river and her muscles violently spasmed from the shock to her system. Disoriented, Sellen struggled toward the surface, her waterlogged clothes weighing her down. She finally got her head above the rushing water, spluttered, and sucked in a gasping breath. The strong current was quickly pulling her downstream. She went with it, though she wasn’t a good swimmer and it was taking all her effort just to stay afloat.

    Her side hurt where Grawurra had rammed into it, and her fingers and toes were beginning to tingle and go numb from the cold water. Sellen tried to veer toward the shore, but she couldn’t seem to move her freezing muscles enough to get there. She started to struggle.

    A dark shape glided through the water and then smoothly surfaced beside her. Telnak Daux, their Quarren pilot, grabbed Sellen’s arm and helped her swim downstream to a small hiding spot near the shore.

    When they got there, Telnak pulled Sellen out of the river and assisted the shivering, dripping, gasping Human to the small crag of rocks in the mountainside that would shield them from prying eyes. Telnak was in her skintight swimming outfit that she usually wore under her regular uniform on missions. She helped Sellen sit down and then said, “You know, Sell, it would help if you gave me some advance notice next time if you need me to keep you from drowning. I wasn’t really in a prime position to assist at that exact second.”

    Grawurra walked up behind Telnak and said that he’d told Sellen the exact same thing.

    “Sorry, both of you,” Sellen said through chattering teeth. She pushed aside wet hair that was plastered to her face and shivered violently. She was even colder out of the water. “Time wasn’t on my side today.”

    “It never is,” Telnak said while she brushed the excess water off her pale orange skin. Then she looked around, curled her facial tentacles in irritation, and said, “Blast it, where’s Relpoek? Lazy, good-for-nothing--”

    “--except saving your lives time and time again,” Relpoek spoke up. “Don’t forget who controls the painkillers.” The green Toydarian field medic flew into view holding his medical equipment and a wadded-up camouflage uniform sandwiched between two boots, which he absentmindedly tossed to Telnak. He ignored the Quarren’s protest at the rumpled state of the clothing and just said, “Out of the way, you two.” Telnak and Grawurra stepped aside, allowing Relpoek to fly up to Sellen and begin examining her. “Listen, Sell,” he said as he did so, “next time give me some warning before you do something dumb like giving yourself hypothermia, okay? I wasn’t in the right spot with my equipment.”

    “Blast it, you’re all getting soft on me. Or lazy. Or something. Were any of you ready for anything?” Sellen asked.

    “Yes,” Telnak said while she donned her uniform. “We were ready for Plans A through E. It’s not our fault you went straight to Plan Q with no warning.”

    “Eh, fair enough, I suppose,” Sellen said, still shivering. “Thanks for being flexible.” She fumbled out of her soaked tunic, boots, and pants with Relpoek’s help, flinching at any movement in her side-- she wondered if Grawurra had bruised a rib, or worse-- and then tightly wrapped herself in the emergency blanket Relpoek handed her.

    At the thought of Grawurra, Sellen looked more closely at the sniper. His black fur was completely dry.

    “Didn’t you jump in the river too?” she asked him.

    He harumphed in amusement, then said there had been no reason for him to. Once he was no longer burdened with holding Sellen, he’d been able to climb through the trees easily. He’d made it down without getting shot and had paralleled the river on foot.

    “Show-off,” Sellen mumbled.

    “You should be grateful,” Relpoek told her as he dug through his small medkit. “I for one never want to smell wet Wookiee again.”

    “So is the mission done? What happened?” Telnak asked.

    “Yeah, the mission’s done,” Sellen said. As if on cue, a muffled alarm sounded from the direction of the First Order outpost upriver. With a groan, she dumped the water out of her boots, put the squeaky things back on, forced herself to her feet and lamented the loss of her adrenaline taking the edge off the cuts and bruises on her body. “We’d better get out of here before the base sends out search parties. I need my dry uniform, so let’s grab my mission pack, head to the rendezvous point and wait for our pickup.”

    *****
     
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  3. earlybird-obi-wan

    earlybird-obi-wan Chosen One star 6

    Registered:
    Aug 21, 2006
    An order and a mission that almost went wrong. Will they get back?
    Great scenes and descriptions of the action
     
  4. Anedon

    Anedon Jedi Grand Master star 4

    Registered:
    May 11, 2016
    I remember the first story with these characters and it was really great. So its nice to see more of them. :)
     
  5. Anedon

    Anedon Jedi Grand Master star 4

    Registered:
    May 11, 2016
    Sorry Doublepost
     
    Last edited: Aug 10, 2021
  6. Thumper09

    Thumper09 Force Ghost star 4

    Registered:
    Dec 9, 2001
    Thanks! I probably should have put this in the intro notes, but each of these entries is independent of each other. Somehow they seem to have a lot of missions that go wrong, though, heh. Thank you, and thanks for reading and commenting!

    Thanks! I'm glad to hear you remember them from the other story. They were fun to write about, and this seemed like a good way to do more with them. Thanks for reading and commenting!

    The next two (shorter) entries should be up on Sunday.
     
  7. Thumper09

    Thumper09 Force Ghost star 4

    Registered:
    Dec 9, 2001
    400 Word Cross Country: 400 words about your character, couple, family, or friendship with any theme.


    Telnak Daux adjusted the shuttle’s speed and trajectory again to compensate for the tricky orbital mechanics of their approach vector. In front of them hung the large moon, though they did not have the usual equatorial view. Instead, they were heading directly for its southern pole, and only the southern hemisphere filled the viewport as the shuttle flew directly “upward” from “below.”

    Sellen sat in the co-pilot’s seat, though she was forbidden from touching anything ever since the Incident on Nishmar VI. She shifted her weight and asked, “Are you sure about this, Telnak? If those orbital sensors detect us--”

    “I’m sure,” the Quarren interrupted. “The sensors are primarily focused around the equatorial regions, since that’s where most starship traffic comes in. You Humans always think too two-dimensionally, even out here. You always forget there’s a third axis in space, and not everything happens on a planet’s orbital plane. That’s good for us and bad for them, because it means they won’t expect us to come in this way.”

    “Okay,” Sellen said. She swivelled her chair and called toward the aft, “You two almost ready? We’re landing soon.”

    Grawurra barked an affirmative. Relpoek, though, called in response, “No, I’m not. We don’t have nearly enough bacta onboard for me to treat us all after Telnak makes another of her so-called ‘landings.’ Given the projected amount of injuries, I might have enough for two of us to survive, assuming the shuttle’s not completely destroyed on impact. Anyone have some chance cubes so we can determine which two it’ll be? That’s the only way to do it fairly.”

    “Rel, can you come here a sec?” Telnak called in a passable imitation of Sellen’s voice. Sellen turned to her, confused, but Telnak held up a hand.

    She listened hard for wingbeats, then she waited as they got closer... closer... almost...

    “What is it, Sell--” Relpoek started to ask.

    The instant Relpoek flew into the cockpit’s narrow doorway, Telnak abruptly rolled the shuttle, and the shuttle’s doorway rammed into the hovering Toydarian. At the sudden eruption of cursing behind her, Telnak grinned darkly, straightened the ship, and returned her attention to their approach vectors.

    “Oops.”

    Sellen sighed and went to help Relpoek. “That wasn’t my idea,” she told him.

    “Traitor,” Telnak muttered.

    “No worries, Sell,” Relpoek said, grunting a bit. “Like I said, poor flying is to be expected when she’s at the controls.”


    -----------------

    200 Freestyle: A 200 word story about your character, family, friendship or couple with a free choice of any theme.


    “This next step’s very delicate. You have to do it gently,” Relpoek said.

    “No, you don’t,” Telnak piped up.

    Relpoek ignored her, like he’d been ignoring all her laughter and comments. He was already grumpy from the pain, and sitting so long with his wings still made him antsy. “Gently,” he reiterated.

    Grawurra rumbled agreement. He took the bacta patch Relpoek had prepared and placed it on the wound on Relpoek’s back, underneath the base of his left wing.

    The medicated bandage stung like crazy the instant it touched his skin, and Relpoek sucked in a breath and whirled away before Grawurra could adhere it to him. “Ouch! I said gently!”

    Offended, Grawurra protested that he had indeed done it very gently. Telnak doubled over in laughter.

    “That was not gentle, that was a speeder crash! Well, maybe a speeder crash is gentle for you when you’re ten times my size, but not for me!” Relpoek snatched the bandage from Grawurra. “Where’s Sellen? She won’t crash a building into me. Her fingers won’t get fur in my wound either.”

    “I’ll do it for you,” Telnak offered gleefully.

    “I’d rather bleed to death,” Relpoek muttered. He waddled away. Ugh, he hated walking.

    *****
     
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  8. earlybird-obi-wan

    earlybird-obi-wan Chosen One star 6

    Registered:
    Aug 21, 2006
    disastrous flying and little Relpoek suffering through it getting patched up by Grawurra.
    love the fun in it
     
  9. Thumper09

    Thumper09 Force Ghost star 4

    Registered:
    Dec 9, 2001
    Thanks! I think the main hobby of both Telnak and Relpoek is antagonizing each other. Thanks for reading and commenting!

    Here's the final entry for the pentathlon. Thanks to everyone who's followed along!

    --------------------

    1500 Word Dash: A 1500 word story about your character, family, friendship or couple with any theme.


    Grawurra sat high up in the-- he didn’t even know what it was. It looked like a bunch of dried-out sea sponges fused together by rock-like material in the vague shape of a leafless tree. He’d taken to simply calling it a sponge tree. From his high vantage point, he methodically scanned their complete surroundings using his sniper rifle’s night vision scope. That scope had become more and more important as the mission went on: it had already been over thirty standard hours of nighttime on this slowly rotating planet. The temperature kept dropping, and none of the team knew when the sun would rise again.

    The ground around them for klicks in every direction seemed like the same rock-like material in the sponge trees, but the ground was also cracked and broken everywhere. Chaotic, criss-crossing, meter-deep trenches butted up against sheets of sharp, jagged rocks jutting up and out. There was no flat, level ground anywhere in sight, and they hadn’t found any on their arduous journey here to the pickup coordinates from their drop-off location. Even the occasional sponge trees grew from precarious rock edges or inside trenches.

    Grawurra paid special attention to the inside of the trenches, but everything seemed quiet for the moment. He watched for a few more minutes to make certain there were no dangers approaching, and then he looked down at their camp below.

    Telnak and Relpoek were asleep on opposite sides of the shallow trench the AT-STs had claimed. Sellen sat between them. She was awake and working on something.

    Grawurra rumbled in disapproval. He slung his rifle on his back and climbed down. The planet’s higher-than-standard gravity made the movements more difficult, and his muscles ached.

    The gravity difference made him misjudge his last step and hit the ground harder than he’d wanted. At the sudden noise, Sellen jumped, dropped what she was working on, and had her blaster aimed at Grawurra before he could react. A moment later, she exhaled but didn’t really relax. “It’s you. Sorry,” she whispered in Basic. She put the blaster back on her lap and picked up a datapad. “See anything?”

    No,” he answered in Shyriiwook. “I didn’t hear that humming either.

    “Good,” Sellen replied. She still seemed spooked, but Grawurra couldn’t blame her. It had been a particularly rough couple days, as the cuts and bruises on her face attested to.

    After sunset, while stumbling across this horrible, open terrain, the team had gotten caught in an unexpected stampede of animals that had come out of nowhere, preceded only by an odd humming sound. The short, flat quadrupeds had claws, a tough grey hide, and were about a meter long, but when several hundred were coming relentlessly and speedily toward the team at once, the relatively small size was largely irrelevant. They leapt from trench to trench, never stopping or slowing.

    Relpoek had flown above them and was unhurt. Grawurra had braced himself and stood, towering over them and presenting the smallest profile possible, and most had barely managed to squeeze around him in time. He’d also held Relpoek up when his wings gave out after the sustained fight against the stronger gravity. Sellen and Telnak had gotten the worst of the onslaught since they’d first dove for cover into the closest trench. Only after they’d realized their mistake and struggled up to the sharp ground above the trenches did the animals start to jump over them instead of onto them. The supplies Sellen and Telnak had instinctively thrown into the trench at the start weren’t so lucky, and they were destroyed.

    That was doubly unfortunate when they’d discovered the likely reason for the stampede shortly after. A large storm hit fast and hard from the direction of the stampede’s origin. It had drenched them in heavy, stinging, acidic raindrops and whipped strong winds around them for the better part of an hour. All of that later made fighting off a particularly strong, toothy predator a lot more challenging. They’d nearly depleted their only remaining blaster pistol’s power pack doing so, and Grawurra’s sniper rifle had been largely useless at such close range.

    It had definitely not been a good couple days, and Grawurra knew what that meant for Sellen. He also knew it meant he’d have to save her from herself. After all, it was his responsibility to watch the others’ backs.

    Why are you still awake? I told you I’d keep watch,” he said.

    “I know. But I’m fine. I’ve pulled all-nighters before.”

    Grawurra growled, and Sellen relented. “Okay, fine. I wanted to get this done first.” She shivered from the cold, then held up the datapad. The screen was cracked.

    Do it later,” Grawurra said. “You’re exhausted, both from the hard time getting here and the sheer number of hours you’ve been awake. I bet you haven’t slept since nightfall.

    “Because this blasted planet is going to kill us, and I can’t let that happen,” she said in a rush. “What if those-- what’d we call them-- trench-jumpers overrun us again? Or another of those murder-teeth predators comes after us? Everything’s happened so fast. Too fast. That’s why I’ve been trying to reprogram the datapad to detect anything coming, but it’s busted. So I tried to scavenge some electronics from what was left of the macrobinoculars but that didn’t work, and I couldn’t concentrate with the other two arguing nonstop so I told them to separate and get some sleep or I’d punch them unconscious myself, and then--”

    Sellen, stop,” Grawurra interrupted. She’d told him once that she’d nearly flunked out of Special Forces training because she rambled when she got too tired, which the instructors considered a security risk during enemy interrogation. Since the concept of the AT-STs team had eventually been Sellen’s idea, Grawurra was glad they’d let her remain, but at times like this it was obvious what the instructors had been concerned about.

    “--so then I figured I had to reboot it and do some recalibration, except--”

    Grawurra tried a different trick. “Sellen, listen to me.” With these words he switched from Shyriiwook to another Wookiee language he knew, Xaczik. While Sellen was fluent in understanding Shyriiwook, she only knew the basics of Xaczik, and it had been a while since Grawurra had spoken it to her so he was sure she was rusty. Sure enough, Sellen stopped talking and cocked her head, trying to piece together the uncommon words.

    That’s better,” he continued in Xaczik, still forcing her to pay close attention to what he was saying. “Everything will be fine. We’ll get through this.

    Sellen furrowed her brow in confusion. “‘Ten wooden goods will go through’?”

    No, I--” Grawurra couldn’t think of a simpler way to say it, so he switched back to Shyriiwook and repeated it.

    “Oh. Sorry. I’m out of practice.” Sellen sighed, rubbed her eyes, and shivered again. “I just... Blast it, Grawurra, it’s one thing to die on a mission, but this...” She trailed off.

    Grawurra understood, though. The leads that New Republic Intelligence had gotten on this place had been wrong. There were no First Order facilities, no First Order activity, no indications that they’d ever even been here. That had left the AT-STs to slog over this horribly difficult ground amid the stronger gravity to reach their pickup point. All that effort and all the misadventures they’d had along the way on this planet seemed utterly pointless.

    Sellen had always hated pointlessness. Especially when it hurt her team.

    Grawurra wished he could take some weight off her shoulders and put it on his instead. “I know,” he said. “But we’ll be fine. We just have to wait for our pickup.

    “Nineteen more hours,” Sellen said quietly. “With no supplies, no food source, no water, no sunlight, and wild animals attacking us like we’re an infection on this planet.”

    But no First Order,” Grawurra pointed out. “No one shooting at us, chasing us, generally being unhappy to see us.

    Sellen barked a laugh. “Yeah. I guess.” Her eyelids drooped, but she shook her head hard and lifted her datapad to continue working.

    Grawurra took it from her. Sellen protested, but with one finger he gently pushed her back to where she’d been sitting against the rough wall of the trench. The gravity helped. “No. You need sleep. I’ll keep watch.

    “No, I have to--”

    I’ll keep watch.” Brown eyes locked with brown eyes. “Sell, I got this. Everyone will be safe. I promise.

    Grawurra watched the internal war playing out on her face, but at last Sellen exhaled and the fight drained from her. “Okay. Thanks, Grawurra.”

    He nodded, then stood. He hadn’t even made it out of the trench before her eyes were closed and she was breathing deeper.

    Grawurra tucked the datapad into his pack and climbed the sponge tree once more. He made himself comfortable at the top, pulled out his sniper rifle and scope, and silently dared anything on this planet to try to get past him.

    --------------
     
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  10. earlybird-obi-wan

    earlybird-obi-wan Chosen One star 6

    Registered:
    Aug 21, 2006
    Grawurra is very caring for Sellen. But what a disasterous planet to be on
    Congrats on finishing the pentathlon
     
  11. Anedon

    Anedon Jedi Grand Master star 4

    Registered:
    May 11, 2016
    Nice chapter. Read once somewhere that war is like 90 percent waiting... so it fits seeing some of it here as well. ;)
     
  12. Thumper09

    Thumper09 Force Ghost star 4

    Registered:
    Dec 9, 2001
    Thank you! Yeah, that planet's not a nice place to be, so it's a good thing Grawurra is watching out for them as much as he can. Thanks for reading and commenting!

    Thanks! I've heard that saying too, and yeah, this is definitely a team that would do a lot of waiting, especially when they get faulty information. Thank you for reading and commenting!
     
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