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Star Wars Dark Reach: Episode I - An Order Remade

Discussion in 'Role Playing Forum' started by Lady Belligerent , Jul 1, 2019.

  1. HanSolo29

    HanSolo29 Manager Emeritus + Official Star Wars Artist star 7 VIP - Former Mod/RSA

    Registered:
    Apr 13, 2001
    The following is a combo with Lady Belligerent – as always, it was a pleasure! :D

    IC: Aryan Graul, Valieri Denora, and Spif the Mechanic
    Streets, Nar Shaddaa

    Aryan could not remember much from the brief meeting in the café. Not only was his short-term memory greatly compromised by his injury, but Dr. Jepsun had been right to assume that he had fallen asleep...if only for a short time. He was both mentally and physically exhausted, which is what ultimately contributed to his memory lapse in this instance. As a result, he could not immediately recall that the doctor had ordered him back to the shuttle to rest, and so for the first part of their stroll, Aryan remained relatively calm and compliant.

    But under the surface, a very dangerous scenario was emerging. While cognitive fatigue was common among the brain-injured, it also had a tendency to serve as a catalyst for all the other symptoms associated with the condition to rise up to the surface, almost like a domino effect. Once intense fatigue sets in – and it can happen very quickly – motor functionality and impulse control fail, and it becomes nearly impossible for the person to pick up on social cues and make sound judgments. Like a small child, Aryan required frequent naps to remedy this problem, usually relying on others to tell him when to take them.

    A good gauge to determine Aryan’s level of exhaustion was his eyes. Since the injury, they often appeared somewhat glazed over, almost as if he were perpetually stoned. However, when his fatigue reached a dangerous point, his eyes turned wild. They seemed to change from their natural bluish-gray to a dark, stormy hue.

    An outburst usually wasn’t far behind, generating an awkward, and sometimes terrifying, experience for those around him.

    This shift was beginning to happen now as Aryan and his caregiver wandered toward the docking bays. With his right foot occasionally dragging along the permacrete, he slowed his pace to observe his new surroundings, his lips parting marginally with concern. It was in this moment that everything began to click; the woman was leading him back to the shuttle, signaling the end of his journey.

    The resulting panic was almost too much to bear. This meant that he could not achieve his goal; he could not obtain his independence, and he could not prove himself to the others...most notably to Syren.

    In his mind, this was simply unacceptable. He could not fail.

    With a sharp intake of breath, Aryan pulled against the caregiver’s arm – he still could not remember her name – and shuffled his feet, intending to halt her forward progress. He then looked at her sharply, his teeth clenched with determination. “N-No...um, no...back,” he sputtered breathlessly, twisting his torso to point behind him with his good arm, the cane still clenched tightly in his hand. “Whisk--uh, whis-key...me...pay...good--er, only.”

    After a short pause, Aryan winced and brought his arm back toward his chest to indicate himself with a dramatic gesture. “Proof...uh, prove...for, uh...Syren,” he continued in a deep, gravelly baritone. “Under--under, err--stand...only…me--from, umm...me, uh...me...only...get, uh...whisk--key...I, um...get...yes, now.”

    “Aryan,” Valieri said in a stern, but kind voice. “Dr. Jepsun told you that he would get the whiskey,” she spoke slowly and tried to get her patient to keep eye contact, “but, it’s rest time now, so come along.” She took a firmer grip on his arm and was trying to coax him towards the shuttle.

    She did not succeed in her attempts to placate him. If anything, Aryan only grew increasingly more agitated as her voice penetrated the sleepy haze that had descended on his mind. She had failed to grasp the meaning of his words, which fed into his frustration and helped to raise his ire.

    Didn’t she know that in order to make this work – to prove himself – he had to physically acquire the bottle of whiskey himself?

    Digging his heels into the ground, Aryan recoiled from her touch. No,” he grumbled through clenched teeth, twisting violently to the side in an effort to break contact with her. “Must...I, err--myself! Impor--imp, uh...import--big! Prove...um, I...Syren...proof--err, uh...my--myself!”

    “Need some help, Miss?” Came a voice from behind Aryan and Valieri causing her to cringe. She didn’t need interference from a stranger when Aryan was in route to a full on meltdown. She turned and responded, “we are all fine here, thank you.” But the rough looking mechanic didn’t look convinced as he looked up and down at Aryan. “Is he space sick or just a mental case? ‘Cause my wife’s brother is one of those brain damaged people, and I usually just slap the hell out of him when he starts acting sort of off.”

    This was bad. “No, he’s just fine, so we will be just on our way,” Valieri replied and pulled Aryan’s arm. “We have to leave now,” she hissed to Aryan.

    It was too late to get away without notice. A small crowd was gathering around the mechanic, and he was holding court with his thorough knowledge on how to handle anyone that wasn’t ‘right in the head’. “You’ve gotta be firm with them,” he was detailing when a furry mechanic broke in with, “how the kriff do you know, Spif?”

    Spif rolled his eyes skyward and spoke as if everyone should have known that his brother-in-law had fallen, head first, off the wing of a shuttle he was servicing. “Landed clean on his head,” Spif explained, “he still won’t answer a question no matter how hard I smack him, the poor bastard.”

    The gathering crowd provided a temporary distraction from Aryan’s unyielding crusade to defy his caregiver’s orders. He immediately stopped his ranting and became unnaturally quiet, his eyes wandering erratically around the semi-circle of mechanics and engineers before finding the loud and burly man at the center of it all.

    Aryan did not like this man. It was clear from his insolent boasting that he was woefully uninformed about his condition and the many hardships he had to endure on a daily basis. Instead of trying to understand the situation, he seemed content to make sweeping generalizations for the sole purpose of entertaining his buddies. He also spoke as if Aryan wasn’t even there, regarding him as nothing more than an invalid who was incapable of comprehending his ignorant comments.

    All of this played into Aryan’s insecurities, causing him to tense and shift uneasily as he became more self-aware of his ailment and how it was affecting his quality of life. It left him feeling exposed…vulnerable, and as a result, he fell back in on himself and cowered slightly when his caregiver gave him another solid tug on the arm to usher him away from the scene.

    He began to stumble forward and comply at her urging, but not before his disinhibited state caused him to blurt out the first thing that came to mind as he passed the smug mechanic. Despite his weakened resolve, he still held a lot resentment toward this man.

    “Godsdamn...kriffin’...uh, bas--bastard!” Aryan exclaimed without a single thought to the potentially dangerous situation developing around him. “I--I’m...I...right, uh...right--here!” He emphasized this point by driving his cane solidly into the ground, his eyes flashing with a feral rage. “Kriff! I...err--uh, I...right, umm...right…here!”

    The crowd of mechanics fell into a stunned silence as Aryan ranted. An older man stepped closer to Aryan and sniffed, “he’s just drunk, you idiots.” He gave a dismissive wave of a greasy hand and stalked off saying, “get him home and make some strong caf before someone kicks his ass.”

    Valieri stifled a gasp and tightened her hold on Aryan, her mind was whirling with possibilities of how to escape this situation. She could com the doctor, but that would send the message that she wasn’t capable. Her free hand went to her pocket and felt the emergency injector of a powerful sedative, she’d begun keeping one nearby in case of a patient that could over power her, did she dare use it now? The mechanics were all speaking at once and giving their opinions on everything ranging from handling drunks to hangover remedies. The din of all the chatter was enough to make a healthy person miserable, so she knew it was only feeding Aryan’s anxiety, she needed them to shut up.

    Before she could act, the know-it-all stepped closer and offered his help, “aww miss, I’m sorry. My old lady always says I talk too much and should mind my own business.” He looked over at Aryan with an expression of pity, “Can I help you get your man home?”

    By this point, everything was beginning to blur together for Aryan – sights, sounds, sensations; it was one tumultuous roar that resounded painfully inside his head and made it nearly impossible to concentrate. It was like a thousand voices screaming at once, all vying to claim a small slice of what remained of his limited attention span. It was sensory overload to the extreme, and he simply could not keep up. His severe fatigue proved to aggravate this problem even further.

    That’s why he did not instantly react when the old engineer approached him and accused him of being intoxicated. He only gawked at the man with wild eyes, swaying ever so slightly as his right hand curled instinctively toward his chest. The gesture unwittingly locked his arm with his caregiver, which ultimately prevented him from trying to pursue the man when he moved away to return to his companions.

    The smug mechanic was not so lucky, however.

    Aryan’s anger continued to burn for this man, and so when he came close enough to offer his assistance, he felt the urge to properly educate him on what it was like to live with a brain injury. He did not want this man’s pity.

    “Kriff...you, uh...mis--take,” he growled under his breath, shifting his feet so that the caregiver now supported most of his weight on his right side. “No...hel--er, help...from…you!”

    Without warning, Aryan lashed out with his good arm and proceeded to strike the smug mechanic hard across the knees with his cane.

    “Hey!” Mr. KnowItAll exclaimed when the cane smacked his knees. “Give me that you sleemo,” he sputtered at Aryan. The man danced several steps to avoid the flailing cane until he was able to firmly grab it.

    Valieri grabbed the sedative from her pocket and was trying to inject Aryan, but the melee between the men was making it impossible to do it. She was trying to keep a grip on his arm, and didn’t see that the mouthy mechanic had managed to wrestle away the cane. Unfortunately she felt the motion of Aryan ducking to protect his head when the man swung the cane wildly, but it was too late for her. The cane whacked her soundly in the head and she crumpled to the permacrete.

    At first, Aryan remained oblivious to the caregiver’s injury. It wasn’t until he heard the scuffling of her feet against the pavement that he turned with wide eyes, a curse issuing from his lips as he staggered sideways in an attempt to avoid her fall. Unfortunately, he failed to realize that their arms were still interlocked at the elbow, and her momentum was carrying him off-balance. At this point, there was nothing he could do to prevent the inevitable; his reflexes were not fast enough. He heard himself grunt before he ultimately tumbled to the ground beside her.

    Despite landing awkwardly on his knees and sliding forward to scrape open the palms of both hands, he barely felt any pain upon impact. This was likely due to his body’s heightened euphoric state – he was functioning on nothing but pure adrenaline. While Aryan’s mind remained clouded by his own mental wounds, he found that the release of this potent hormone afforded him a brief moment of clarity. It is what had initially allowed him to duck when the mechanic took aim for his head…

    ...and how he now managed to spot the hypodermic injector resting a short distance away from the caregiver’s outstretched hand.

    He suddenly had an…idea?

    Acting on this unexpected burst of lucid thinking, Aryan reached out for the medjector with a sharp gasp, the fingers of his good hand curling clumsily around the handle just as the smug mechanic’s shadow loomed over him. The man straddled him at the waist and raised the cane to deliver the final blow, but Aryan was already in motion.

    “Kriff--er, kriffin’...bas--bastard!” he shouted over the din of the crowd as he turned and inserted the injector into the man’s thigh, depressing the trigger to administer its soporific contents.


    To be continued...

    TAG: @Lady Belligerent
     
    Last edited: Aug 16, 2019
  2. Darth Kronos

    Darth Kronos RPF Interview Thread Host star 5 VIP - Game Host

    Registered:
    Jan 2, 2016
    IC: Darth Kronos

    Kronos took a moment before he fully processed what had just happened. "No, Esme, wait-," he called out, his voice obviously pleading and confused in tone.

    But it was too late. She was already out of earshot, gaze likely purposely away from him, and he was left alone at that table, confused and upset as to how their conversation could have gone so wrong so quickly.

    Did she seriously think they could take on Insipid, and basically the entire Sith Order, without consequences? Disastrous consequences, no less? Hints of frustration began to enter his mind. Why was she so insistent on kicking the hornet's nest?

    He stood up, heaved a sigh, and walked over to the main area of conversation, ignoring the obvious unkempt nature of his clothing. Countless creases and wrinkles littered his outfit, but Kronos couldn't be bothered to fix it right then.

    As he neared the gathered Sith, noticing Esme standing in an opposite corner to him, face still visibly upset, he overheard Insipid giving out missions.

    The more he listened, the angrier he became. It was clear that his and Esme's goal was an afterthought to Insipid, regardless of what he claimed. With clenched fists, Kronos genuinely considered punching him in the face right then and there, but, thankfully, he thought better of it and backed down.

    Yet, as Insipid finished offering missions, including several annoying teases about their twins in regards to mission choices, Kronos realized he had no idea what to choose next. Both options seemed to offer equal opportunity.

    He looked to Esme with an obvious, 'What do we choose?' expression.

    Hopefully they could get past this little rut during the mission.

    Whatever they chose.

    TAG: @Sinrebirth
     
  3. HanSolo29

    HanSolo29 Manager Emeritus + Official Star Wars Artist star 7 VIP - Former Mod/RSA

    Registered:
    Apr 13, 2001
    IC: Arek Eross
    Camp Ship 1138, Atravis Sector

    No matter how far he ran, Arek could not escape the nightmares. They had become a constant source of tension and fear in a galaxy already ravaged by the horrors of an eternal god. In a sense, they seemed to embody the very essence of the End, of what it was like to survive among the ashes of the apocalypse.

    And hauntingly enough, they always depicted the same thing.

    Whenever Arek closed his eyes, he saw a thin, wispy man in a black cloak and a darkened cowl. He had no feet and appeared to float freely across the ground as he peered ominously out at the void with two radiant eyes that burned like fire. Those eyes were always searching…hunting for something or someone. But despite his proximity to this dark entity, they never crossed paths. Arek always woke up before that penetrating gaze could find him...

    Until now.

    In one fluid motion, the cloaked man turned and finally locked eyes with Arek, a dark chuckle emanating from deep within the man’s throat. That terrible sound echoed around the wide expanse of the mindscape, causing a chill to run down the length of Arek’s spine and filling him with dread. All he could do at this point was stare at those twin orbs, the light now expanding outward from the cowl to overwhelm his senses. He wanted to cry out against this onslaught, but he found that he could not produce the sound. In fact, he could not move at all, except for his facial muscles.

    That’s when he heard the voice.

    I see you.

    Arek clenched his jaw and narrowed his eyes, almost challenging the dark man to prove it.

    There is no escape.

    The man floated closer, one spindly hand lifting from the folds of his cloak. He then extended his index finger and stretched across the distance that separated them to touch the tip of his appendage to his forehead. A jolt of pain immediately blossomed from the point of impact, prompting him to yell out...but once again, he realized that the effort was useless. He still could not utter a single sound.

    The cloaked man seemed to take great pleasure in this, and he almost sneered.

    I see YOU!


    * * *


    With a sharp exhale, Arek Eross finally yelled out as he bolted upright in the makeshift cot and threw the tattered blanket to the floor with a violent jerk. A thin sheen of sweat covered his body and his breathing was coming in short, rasping gasps. He reached up to run a hand through his tousled hair, pausing briefly to probe the spot where the dark entity had touched him in the dream.

    As far as he could tell, he had no lasting physical effects. The entity had not truly touched him, and yet he could still perceive a slight stirring at the back of his mind. It was something he had been aware of since his childhood, had even utilized it at times to gain precedence, but it was only recently that it had truly blossomed. He had become more attuned with all the death and destruction that had swept across the galaxy. It was as if the Force itself was crying out in agony, and it was using him as a conduit.

    But he knew there was more to it in this case. The cloaked man in his recurring nightmare wasn’t just a specter of his imagination; he was real. That’s why it was so terrifying. Someone out there was actually looking for him...and they had finally found him.

    That thought brought clarity, and maybe even a hint of dismay, as he swung his legs over the side of the cot and looked around the dimly lit chamber. It wasn’t the most extravagant of accommodations, but what did he expect from a refugee camp ship? He initially thought he could come here to lose himself among the masses, but he was wrong in making that assumption.

    His plan had obviously failed.

    Even now, he could hear the panicked screams out in the corridors beyond. With a weary sigh, Arek forced himself to his feet, pulling a shirt over his head in the process, and drifted over toward the viewport to stare out at the source of their fear. A single portal had materialized off their port side, and through it came a trio of escort ships with a bulbous rock-like vessel at the center.

    While Arek had never witnessed one firsthand, he had learned enough through his history classes at school to recognize a Yuuzhan Vong assault cruiser when he saw one.

    This was...bad. Very bad.

    He knew that if he stayed here, the Vong would tear this ship apart without a shred of mercy. The thousands of refugees on board would then be killed, assimilated, or forced to become slaves for their oppressive regime. They were ultimately here because of him; he would not be able to live with so many deaths on his conscience...not after everything that had transpired in the past year. Not after his mother.

    He had to flee if he wanted to save them; he had no choice.

    Arek idly fingered the silver chain around his neck, seeking the ring attached at the end and bringing it up to his lips. He closed his eyes briefly in remembrance of his mother before moving quickly to gather his things – his armor, blasters, helmet, and various utility belts.

    Once he finished getting dressed and had all of his equipment packed away in his duffel, Arek moved out into the corridors and fought his way through the sea of beings struggling to make their way toward the hangars and various escape pods. It was slow-going, but he finally made it to his destination – the starboard hangar bay. That’s where he found the X-83 TwinTail starfighter tucked away in a far corner. It was small, compact, and fast – the perfect combination for a discreet departure.

    Climbing aboard and bringing the systems online with minimal effort, Arek was soon rocketing away from the ship and into the black void of space.

    TAG: @Sinrebirth
     
  4. Sinrebirth

    Sinrebirth Immortal Mod-King of the EUC, Lit, RPF and SWC star 8 Staff Member Manager

    Registered:
    Nov 15, 2004
    TAG 1 of 2

    IC: Darth Insipid the Greater

    Kesh, Grand Hall

    It went the way all Sith events involving alcohol did; messily, relatively.

    He looked for his team. Bernael remained aloof, wandering, or, perhaps, prowling, as he was want to do. Manticore and Leda were off, about to go train. Insipid leaned on Bernael to go join them; them training would be a handy distraction in the interim. At some point he would need to discuss with Manticore where the Holocron of Tulak Hord was... what with the Holocron of Daritha Soa having vanished since Bellorum spirited it away during the Rule of Three - ditto the Dagger of Mortis - they were low on artefacts save for Insipid's own pyramidal Holocron, which he was keeping close-by until he needed to bequeath it.

    [​IMG]

    It was hardly as if Insipid could create his own holocron, was it now?

    A light snort.

    Their knowledge of the Sith of this time was limited. Until they headed to Korriban, and dug deep, they would never discover the Sith of this timeline. That was a curiosity for him, but Insipid had no interest in being tied to the homeworld, and repeating the mistakes the Sith had made time and time again; tying themselves to the past. His Sith would overlay whatever past had occurred here with their own histories.

    That left Helinith, who seemed to have created a gravity around her out of Serapis and Renn, the former who was seemingly more mentally handicapped than Insipid would have liked, and latter who was just hanging around like, well, like a tree. Insipid curled his lip.

    That was even before he picked at Kronos, Ravenous and Esmerelda. Drost was at least trying, but who knows what he truly sought. He was from the time before Bane in this timeline, because, yes, Darth Bane existed here too. That was about all Insipid had managed to glean. There was the barest hint that Darth Ruin existed in this timeline as well, but they would investigate in due course. But for Drost, he had rose in pride over his role as an ersatz Protector, and then dipped again, once he had discovered it was a lie.

    Protector...

    Meanwhile, Kronos was pining for Esmerelda to decide for him. Insipid grit his teeth and felt a fanged moment about to happen again.

    Soliloquy had settled on a shape, at least. Insipid had already had enough of the ‘special treatment’ that Soliloquy demanded. Insipid still knew little about the creature, and very few weeks it seemed to change identity or gender or intention. Almost as if it had a fractured personality.

    Enough frivolity. This could go on forever if he didn't nip it in the bud.

    Insipid strode over to Helinith. His eyes blazed red. "Hapes, not Coruscant. You shall join Vizier Bo, yes?" He did not deign to lock gazes with Serapis in his droid form. The Sith would sink or swim. "I have arranged a ship for you."

    He turned to Kronos and Esmerelda. "You are going to Kamino to with Soliloquy and Cocytus, taking your yacht."

    "Zalen, apparently free will is too much for them all," Insipid sneered. He gestured to Hades, Ravenous and Hades'-woman, the one he could not remember the name of. Or did not care to. "These are yours. Take them and hunt for Kralkus or Arach."

    TAG: Keshiri Sith

    @Helinith, @Snokers, @DarthIshyZ, @darthbernael (henceforth the Hapes Tag Set)

    @Mitth_Fisto, @DarthCocytus, @Darth Kronos (henceforth the Kamino Tag Set)

    @Lady Belligerent, @E. L.Knight, @WookieeRage (henceforth the Metellos Tag Set)

    @greyjedi125, @QueenSabe7, @darthbernael (henceforth the Kuati Tag Set)


    @Silvertough - unassigned, because Insipid is not sure about you. Congrats.
    ---
    IC: General Brendol Hux

    Mustafar, In Orbit

    The prisoners were present, but there wasn't much more he could say about it.

    Ship,
    the semi-sentient sphere of ancient Eternal technology - whatever Eternal technology even was, though Snoke had once suggested it was from 'another world-line', whatever that meant, was holding Arach, a no-name woman known as Subject X, and a former First Order captain by the name of Finis, who had been allied with Lord Hades personally. Ship had followed the First Order capture of Mustafar, a world deep in the Outer Rim far from the Unknown Regions.

    While an elderly droid factory was here, which could be restored, and the planet had ample natural resources, if one could harness molten lava, the world was quite a stretch for the First Order, and deploying an Imperial Star Destroyer was even more curious, let alone the General in-charge of the new Stormtrooper program. That General being Hux.

    Arach would be coming to, unconscious for several weeks, since the skirmish on Bedlam. Skirmish being the minor term for the Battle there which Hux still didn't fully comprehend, save that Snoke revealed himself as the true ruler of the First Order and took command. But all of that would mean nothing to Arach.

    All she would have was the innards of the spheroid, and the woman who looked like her but older, and the man who she did not know, assuming she woke with some sanity intact.

    TAG: @MoonspunDragon
    ---
    IC: Darth Insipid

    Arriving near Mustafar

    Ventris still had his molten vision on his mind, but Insipid was ahead of himself, sensing something tulmultous. While he gave Ventris the opportunity to catch up, Insipid focused forward. Something... something was already where he needed to be.

    --
    Refugee convoy, besieged


    The Yuuzhan Vong ship held off and there was an alarm as the ship’s tannoy updated. “Shields down!” This meant that the Yuuzhan Vong had tasked the dovin basil - the creature which manipulated gravity and propelled and shielded the ship - to drain the shields away.

    Then plasma balls burst from the cruiser, burning holes in the hull for a wave of dark-shaped fliers to embark through, or for insectile grutchins to alight, gnawing their way through bulkheads and consuming any in their path. The space slugs rammed into the camp ship, releasing dozens of warriors into the bowels of the ship. Blaster bolts were deflected by their vonduun crab armour, and they alighted upon the crew, civilians and innocents alike, tearing through them with their serpentine amphistaffs, hurling razor bugs through flesh and bone, and leaving in their wake a wave of injured and dying, bleeding out or poisoned by their venomous weapons.

    This was the terror that a galaxy had experienced a century and more ago, resurrected and reborn. The True Way of the Yuuzhan Vong God’s was reborn in worship of the Old Ones, when High Lord Vua connected the two beliefs together in a religious epiphany for the masses in the Unknown Regions, or in seclusion in Rodia.

    It was the terror that Arek Eross would experience first hand, and through his newfound Force senses. The TwinTail was proving slow to start up, but weapons were light, and, thankfully, it was pointed towards the entrance.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    An entrance which the Yuuzhan Vong, led by a lack of Voxyn Force-hunters, rushes through, roaring their war cry.

    Do-rik-Vong-pratte!

    To war!

    His sensors even told him that a grutchin was scrambling across the hull for his hangar, and the ship was still warming up.

    TAG: @NickLitYouAFlame, @HanSolo29



    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
     
  5. Lady Belligerent

    Lady Belligerent • WNU Adoptions Coordinator• star 7 VIP - Game Host

    Registered:
    Jan 29, 2008
    GM Update 2/2

    IC: Ike and Bellorum
    Nar Shadaa entertainment district

    “Now we have to find both father and son,” Bellorum said as she checked under the table in case Jerod had fallen under it. “I’m probably going to regret this, but I’ll ask the bouncer at the door if he saw Jerod leave,” she looked sadly at her drink and left the table. She described Jerod to the bouncer and inquired if anyone matching his description had left, while speaking she had discreetly slipped credits to the man, and received a concerning reply that Jerod had indeed left.

    Once back at the table she told Ike the direction Jerod had left in, and asked about the exact drug he’d used. “What will the duration of the effects be?”

    Ike shrugged, sipping his drink. “Usually half an hour, but I doubt he’s touched a drug in his life so probably an hour knowing him.”

    “We could always find the kid and leave the father to his own devices for a bit. Open his eyes and all that.” Ike grinned. “He could have some fun without you looking over his shoulder.”

    Bellorum grimaced, “I’m not looking over his shoulder!” She removed the straw from the fish bowl sized drink and held it up in a brief toast to Ike, and downed the contents. “Let’s go.”

    They left the bar and joined the crowd that filled the street, it seemed much more congested that it had been when they first arrived. After a few minutes they came upon a scene outside of another cantina where there were police vehicles crowded in amongst the pedestrians. Lights were flashing and officers were interviewing beings while others were being loaded into ambulances. “Looks like there was a fight or something,” Bellorum said as she stood with Ike. “That doesn’t feel like something a child would be involved with,” she shrugged and kept slowly walking.


    Ike felt the Force tug at his perceptions. Which was a surprise as the boy had been difficult to detect at all times. His eyes went up, and he reached for Bellorum. “Um, Bell.”


    He took a swig of his glass, which of course had come with him, and pointed at the scaffolding. “He’s up there.”


    Bellorum’s Head jerked up and sure enough, there was Jerod standing up on a rooftop with his arms spread like he was about to take flight.


    “What the kriff does he think he’s doing?” Bellorum dashed to the building which Jerod was perched, and looked up saying, “get down here, Jerod.” Most likely he never heard her since the noise would have drowned out anything not shouted over aloud speaker.

    “We have to get him down before the authorities arrest him for trespassing, or something equally foolish,” she told Ike. Since Ike seemed content to just enjoy his drink and watch, she leapt up the scaffolding and tried to as discreetly as possible, to get closer to Jerod. “Don’t make me come over there, Jerod!” It wouldn’t be an effort to land beside him, but she didn’t want to call attention to herself, or have the authorities take notice since they were all over the street dealing with whatever happened in the bar.


    “Do you want to find Xander or not?”

    Tag: @Jerjerrod-Lennox
     
  6. Moonspun Dragon

    Moonspun Dragon Jedi Grand Master star 5

    Registered:
    Apr 6, 2011
    IC- Darth Arach
    Unknown

    ”Isa. Isa, wake up,”

    Isa groaned and rolled over. ”Five more minutes.”

    ”No. You need to wake up, now.” the voice was gentle, hushed, but urgent. ”Something’s happened.”

    Still not opening her eyes, ten- year- old Isa slowly managed to prop herself on her elbow, her head lolling to the side as she rubbed the sleep out of her eye with her free hand. ”Have the livestock gotten into the grain again?” she asked through a yawn.

    The felt the air tensed around them and she knew it was so much worse than that.

    She felt her mother place her hand on her shoulder.”Isa, the Infection has spread.”

    Shocked, Isa’s golden eyes snapped open to meet her mother’s gaze...


    .... Only to find herself not in her room on Rikku, but in an unfamiliar room.

    Her gaze flitted around her surroundings, confused. ”Mom?” She started at the sound of her voice. It sounded deeper and much older.

    Is that my voice!? She raised a hand to her throat and looked down at herself.

    She was definitely not in a child’s body.

    Her eyes widened and she let out a short shriek of surprise, jumping to her feet as the sound faded. What has happened to me!?

    Suddenly, she started seeing flashes of herself wielding a glowing weapon, cutting through enemies. She saw, and felt corresponding tingles, herself throwing bolts of lightning. She heard a rasping voice instructing her, but it was gone before she could make out what it was saying. She smelled and even tasted death all around her.

    Horrified at these visions, Isa slid down the wall at her back, drew her knees up to her forehead and rested her head against them.

    Who am I?

    What have I done?


    Tag: @Sinrebirth
     
    Last edited: Aug 18, 2019
  7. QueenSabe7

    QueenSabe7 Chosen One star 6

    Registered:
    Mar 23, 2001
    Combo with wanderguard

    IC: Syren, & her Prey

    Cantina, Nar Shadaa

    Syren was silent and observant, her light drink during the flight having evened her out enough and cleared her head of the fuzziness of last night. And of her concern over Aryan.

    In its place was the familiar comfort of anticipation and preparation - of seeking out a mark, of beginning a new hunt. In some, very small and insignificant way, she was also nervous. In the entirety of her time awake since Hoth, this would be her first legit chance to get back to her “old” self, how she used to be before she listened too closely to the voice that whispered to her darkest thoughts. And before she became so entangled with another being that she couldn’t begin to know how to unravel herself.

    That’s not what worried her, though. It was more the uncertainty of if she could be that person again, from so long ago. Was that part of her life still… was that part of her?

    Stepping out of the shuttle and into the throngs of the degenerate, dirty, and lawless citizens of Nar Shadaa, the majority of her doubts were put at ease. Syren threw open the doors to her senses and hungrily consumed all the raunchiness and danger that lurked in dark corners and stuck out in plain sight. An inkling of old feelings stirred deep inside her, both pleasant and harmful, as her eyes traced over various aliens of all shapes and sizes making their way to and from unknown destinations. Humans were present, but almost evenly with those that were not. It was an eclectic mix, and she wanted to be lost inside it.

    As previously promised, she trailed Plo and Anark as they entered a random dive-cantina nearby, assorted smells smacking her in the face once they stepped through the door. Vomit, smoke, sweat, and the sticky-sweet smell of spice hung thickly in the air, almost so heavy as to drown out the high-pitched wailing of the “entertainment” in the back. Almost.

    “You sure know how to kriffing pick ‘em,” she remarked loudly to the Dark Lord-formerly-known-as-Haretisch, wrinkling her nose but already beginning to scope out the assorted patrons that littered to dim space. The odors faded rather quickly as her focus shifted, and this she did remember quite fondly – hidden alcoves, secret deals, meetings of chance, the occasional public kill that no one would be sober or lucid enough to recall as a real event, and the authorities that didn’t even bother to investigate.

    Syren smiled threateningly, casting a dry glance over her shoulder at Plo as she made her way straight to the far end of the bar. She made no eye contact, but could practically feel the wary gazes of those she passed by slide all over her body for differing reasons, none the genuine and kind sort. From an inner pocket of her jacket, her fingers brushing a lightsaber hilt as they found what she sought, she pulled out a small black case that was rectangular in shape. Taking a seat and opening it, she grasped a single cigarette and waited on one of the bartenders to make their way down the line.

    “Anyone got a light,” she purred with a soft smile, to no one in particular.

    Click

    And just like that, a flame was burning mere inches from her face, borne of an antique lighter held between gloved fingers. It had been quiet, even by an assassin’s standards. He sat directly to Syren’s left - light brown hair swept back, short but not too short, stubbled face showing weather, and gaunt jowls sunken in beneath high cheek bones. He hadn’t even looked up from his drink.

    “You don’t have the same smell as the rest of them,” he remarked. As he emptied his glass, one would notice that his eyes were less than sparkling. They were entirely dead and gray, in fact.

    Showing no outward signs of surprise, Syren brought the cigarette up to her lips and leaned it into the open flame. Inhaling deeply, it caught and she drew back, glancing towards the man at her side as she exhaled the smoke into the hazy air above.

    "Thank you," she started, a casual humor to her voice. "I'll take that as a compliment, considering the hygiene - and digestive issues of everyone else..." Waving her hand in a tight circle to indicate the patrons of this establishment, somewhere close by she heard the distinct sounds of dry-heaving. At least her gesture finally caught the eye of the creature behind the bar, and soon after a small glass of amber liquid slid down to stop in front of her, some of the contents sloshing out on to the cracked bar top.

    “You got a name?” he asked.

    Syren shifted to partially face him now, crossing her legs over one another and taking a sip of her drink. She studied him intently and openly, though with her skills, it would seem more as if she may be flirting. "Well, I've been called 'Valyn' for a while now, so let's go with that. And you?"

    He said nothing, only shook his head. “Doesn’t matter now.” He downed a second drink and exhaled. Every time he did, he would seem to deflate a bit more.

    Uncarefully, he reached out and his fingers found the vibroblade holstered on her left thigh. “No one carries one of those just for protection,” he observed as he tapped his knuckles on the bar with same hand to ask for another drink. A closer inspection would reveal it was his only hand. “Are you a professional?”

    Syren stiffened visibly as she caught the movement of his hand, though she did not react. Here eyes merely narrowed as they followed his roving fingers, lightly groping around her side until they found her vibroblade holstered to her thigh. The fact that a stranger was touching her so freely and without her consent made her struggle to conceal a sneer, but it suddenly became clear to her that he wouldn't be able to see it anyways.

    His milky-grey eyes, the non-committal physical advances, the fact that he hadn't looked directly at her yet - he was blind. And down a hand, she also noted, the opposite limb hanging loose at his side and the sleeve of his jacket tied off too far up to still hold most of his forearm and lower.

    She clucked her tongue, leaning back and dropping any sort of false expression. Another drag of her cigarette and she followed the stranger's example, swallowing the remains of her drink in a single gulp and replacing the glass down for a refill. "Depends on what type of professional you are looking for."

    “You don’t seem one for sob stories,” he started, “so I’ll give you the short version.” He shrunk somewhat, speaking now in hushed tones. “I worked in a factory here on the Smuggler’s Moon. There was an accident. Now I can’t work, clearly,” he paused as if to silently gesture to his physical condition. “People need money to live. Especially when those people have families, like I do. And what I lack in work I more than make up for in life insurance.”

    His voice was tired, defeated. “I’ll cut right to the chase, then - I need you to kill me. And it needs to be in a way horrible enough that no one could believe I would hire someone to do it. It’s the only way I can be sure the policy will pay out.”

    Syren gave a soft laugh, watching him. Not that this was the first request of this sort that she had ever received, but there had not been many. "Well, if you can't work, how can you pay?" she asked conversationally, not yet revealing she could do it and keeping things vague for a bit longer.

    "The messier the scene, would usually require a hike in price. For the extra effort, of course. Most of those in that line of work tend to keep things neat and tidy. No loose ends..."

    At the mention of a hike in price, he all but cringed. “All I have is five thousand credits. I guess the good news is my wife would kill me anyway if she found out I pawned her grandmother’s necklace. The bad news is I swallowed it, and the only way you’ll get the credit chip is to cut it out of me.”

    He finished another drink, and felt his head begin to swim. “Look, I’m not asking for much. We can go in the alley behind the bar, you can do the deed and leave me for all I care, someone will find me. Ten minutes of your time.”

    Syren's jaw clenched, gnashing her teeth as she released a breath in a drawn out 'hiss'. She bite back an impatient urge to grab him by the throat and snap his spine, giving what he wanted though not how he wanted. How did she know he wasn't lying, making her go through all this effort only to find his belly full of liquor and no credits? And what gave such a broken man the audacity to think he'd find someone that would trust him even in the most basic sense of the word, enough to go through with this with only a promise of payment, not proof?

    She roughly stamped out her cigarette and downed the remains of her refill, having half a mind to leave him be and pursue another lead more worthwhile, but... wait, why did she even kriffing care? Pausing in the midst of turning away, she looked back at him, searching her own memories for feelings that no longer came easy to her. Whether she knew it or not, she was actually hesitating, overthinking. And that made her temper rise.

    In her former life, while she had taken jobs in order to survive - to buy food, have a roof to sleep under, replace worn equipment, etc - credits had never been her main motivator for reaching her target. The kill had been; the thrill of holding another's life in her hands, the power in being the one to take it from them, and the loss of control over herself as she did it.

    That was why she was an assassin. That was why she had once been one of the most sought after members of her profession, her reputation all but a memory here and now. Back when times were simpler, darker, and without the distraction of... love.

    Sliding out of her seat, Syren walked around and wedged herself in directly at the stranger's side, mere inches from his face. She leaned in and smelled him. Not just the stench that was physically present, but what he was exuding from within. There were many things, many emotions, but what she sensed far above all the others was only one - desperation. It made beings careless, made them do ridiculous, foolish things, but always in the name of some sort of truth. She knew hers, or would make herself remember it.

    When she was done, Plo could have the credits to show for her work.

    "Stop teasing me then and let's go," she whispered close to his ear, her voice low and devoid of emotion.

    He shivered then. There was something impossible to prepare for, in praying for death and receiving an answer. Breathing once shakily, he stood, cane in hand, and felt his way to the back door. Soft footsteps pattered behind him the entire way, so soft in fact that most might not have even heard them at all. The night air was warm on his face as he stepped out and into the empty alley. A good night to die, perhaps. He quietly shed a few tears and thought of his son and his daughter.

    As she had followed the man out the back of the cantina, Syren had kept observant, gauging the size of the area and what there was within it. It was empty and it was dirty, not a place a being would come to unless they wanted to hide... like they did. Reaching out and around, she could not feel any bright spots in the Force - signatures of those that would be aware enough to know that what she was about to do to this human would be horrifyingly wrong.

    No... they were truly and completely alone.

    “Wait,” he whispered, and dropped his cane as he fumbled for something in his pockets. Finally he produced it - a rough hewn, round piece of wood no more than the length of an ink pin, but thicker, with a crude strap. If he expected this woman to finish the job, he couldn’t very well attract attention right away by screaming. He bit down on it, tightening the strap until it stretched his cheeks painfully and pressed his tongue back near enough to gag him outright.

    Then he closed his eyes and whimpered.

    Facing him a distance away from where they had come, only a foot or two apart, she gathered herself as he did the same for himself. A shudder ran over her body as she called on the chill of darkness to settle down over her mind, swarming about her like malevolent tendrils of desire. Her feelings shut off, her hesitation dissolved, and her deepest urges climbed in to take their place. With deadly calm, the assassin stepped closer to him, drinking in any fear that flowed off the man. Her lips parted as he whined, she could not wait any longer.

    Syren had already marked a few tools nearby that she could use once they had come to a stop, and she grabbed one of them - a long, coiled stream of unused wiring. It was thick enough to bear a good amount of weight and had immediately sparked her first idea at the sight of it. So, without another thought she reached down and grabbed an end of the line and bent to one knee before him, setting about tying his only ankle tight enough that even she might not be able to undo the knot. The wiring wrapped up higher, binding his legs together and once she was satisfied it would hold, she stood and shoved harshly into his chest to knock him flat onto his back. Above them was the bottom wrung of an escape ladder and she threw the open end of the wire through, beginning to hoist him up into the air with each pull. She openly used the Force then, helping carry his weight until she had his feet above his head and her face almost level with his chest.

    Tying off the other end to leave him hanging freely, Syren promptly unsheathed her vibroblade from her thigh and grabbed for his one intact arm. She sliced the sharp edge into his skin - mid-forearm down through his wrist, opening up several main veins in one pass. A moan escaped her as a stream of crimson poured free of his body to pool on the ground below him, and she wasted no time in doing the same to his other arm, though with a slightly weaker blood flow. She crouched slowly, admiring her quick work and watching as the life literally drained out of her victim. "You wanted torture," she whispered soothingly to him, moving one of her hands below the heavier stream, her palm splashed red in mere seconds. Her hand clenched into a fist, feeling the thicker liquid squirm between her fingers.

    "Don't fall asleep on me." Rapping one of his cheeks with her blood-smeared hand, she made sure he was still conscious. Whether he could stay awake or not, he soon wouldn't be able to help it and she had to get to the finale, unfortunately earlier than she would have preferred.

    Still stretching time as far as it would go, stalking around him as the small puddle grew into a pool underneath his body, Syren halted back in front of him once that time was up. "I believe now it's time for my payment, don't you think?" she snarled, and with another shockingly swift movement of her blade, she let out a wild shriek as she bisected his abdomen. Innards and organs burst free of his skin, blood and gore splattering her face and chest - overcome for a moment by the throes of her power in the dark side. With a deep breath, her free hand shoved into him, not giving a single care over if he was still alive or not. She fished and searched, tearing into his stomach once she located it. Her fingers were not gentle as they closed in on a hard, circular object which she yanked free, though showing no outward signs of pleasure at locating her reward.

    For the last time she collapsed to her knees before the man, whose name she had never known, and would never now. She grasped his face in her hands, caressing him gently, lovingly even. Syren was breathing heavy, coming down the other side of her blood-lust though she knew that the climax had not been as satisfying as she had hoped.

    There was no greater reward for someone like her, than that of the death of her prey. And she wanted more.

    TAG: @Darth_wanderguard
     
  8. Snokers

    Snokers Jedi Master star 4

    Registered:
    Jul 8, 2015
    A combo with @Darth_wanderguard

    IC: Ralf
    Nar Shaddaa...



    Plo ushered him forward with a shove which made him grunt.

    The ocean of smoke suspended in the air made his eyes sting. He could barely hear the band playing for the racket going on in his head. They were all on alert, screaming and screeching, asking and warning.

    "Just blasted HUSH IT!" It came out as a loud whisper through gritted teeth, laced with scorn.

    He took a moment to take the place in. He would need half a dozen more hands to count the amount of different species cluttering the cantina. Across the way, close to the podium where the band was playing, a ghostly-white human was vomiting up a lunch in the corner.

    His yellow eyes widened when he clocked the scantily clad female standing by an open curtain.

    This is business

    ...yes

    But first thing was first...

    "Just a pint of bitter," he shouted to the Twi'lek behind the bar as he pushed his way between a huddling of Abednedos having what seamed like a heated exchange in their native tongue. The Twi'lek didn't look in his direction but waved a finger at him, acknowledging his request, her lekku swaying as she made her way hastily to the far side of the bar.

    He rested his elbows on the sticky surface of the bar and poked at his temples, a headache was definitely looming.

    The barmaid returned surprisingly quickly, placing his drink in his open hand and, in the same movement, swiping the credits from his other one, and then she was gone.

    He took a swig and almost spat it right back out. It was some sort of nectarwine. Disgusting. He reluctantly swallowed, his cheeks were drawn sharply inwards from the taste. He turned and weaved his way through past the same crowd again and glanced around to look for Syren. No sign.

    Wicked... sordid, the phantom voices spat as his eyes fell upon a trio sitting at a darkened alcove in the back corner, two Tognath's and a human with a very interesting beard. He made a decision and started towards them. As he manoeuvred himself past another large cluster of patrons he winked and clicked his tongue at the girl in front of the red curtain, she looked him up and down and flashed a mischievous grin.

    As he closed in on the table he was headed for, one of the Tognath's nudged his friend and pointed in his direction.

    Saber... desecrate them!

    He could his index finger's twitching involuntarily at the notion. But no, not today.

    "Mind if I have a seat," he asked, already setting his nectarwine on the round table.

    “Yes,” the first man replied flatly, “I don’t know what the kriff you think this is, but I’m not here to kriffing speed date with every costume-party idiot that walks in the door. This is the kind of place where you meet degenerates you already know, shavit-for-brains, it is not the kind of place to find new degenerates.”

    The two other men at the table had begun to crack up at the halfway point of the first one’s diatribe.

    “Ah.. ahaha... don’t mind Orgen, he’s just mad that the Twi’Lek behind the bar shot him down,” the second man spoke up.

    “Shut UP!” Orgen roared, and nearly came out of his seat but for the third man who quickly got in his way.

    “And Dago keeps the peace as per usual!” the second, still unnamed man continued to commentate. “Sit down,” he gestured to the empty seat across from him, and offered his hand to Anark. “I’m Flynn Avix.”

    He shook the outstretched hand and levelled a side-eyed glare at Orgen.

    “Depends what you’ve got the stomach for,” Flynn took a long drag off his cigarette. “I mean yeah, there’s always money around. I might know of something but uhh...” he feigned uncertainty, “my memory’s, uh, a little fuzzy,” he looked coy.

    Behind them, a handsome Twi’Lek was setting a tray of drinks down on the adjacent table. Dago snaked an arm around her waist and pulled her into his lap, “you look good enough to eat tonight, love.”

    “Stop,” she laughed and swatted him with a folded rag before freeing herself. “Ow!” She exclaimed as he answered with a stiff slap to her backside. “Behave, Dago. You’ll give the others ideas and I might have to kill someone if they take your example. Who’s your friend?” she sauntered around the back of Anark’s chair, letting a soft blue hand trail from the back of his neck around front to his chest.

    “She’s just trying to get a bigger tip,” Orgen warned and slammed his drink in one. “She doesn’t make good on any of it, I promise.”

    “Well definitely not for you anyway,” the Twi’Lek shot back. Orgen went red from anger but said nothing.

    “Ralf Nimrad,” he sat down, “I’m fresh off a cruise liner that left from Coruscant.” He took a swig if his drink and struggled to keep his face straight as the diabolical taste assaulted him. “My bounty hasn’t come through yet but I need a ship fast. You three look like an industrious bunch, any idea how a man can make some big cash quick in Nar Shaddaa?”

    They don't like us

    Anark laughed, humorlessly this time, snaking his fingers between the Twi'lek's to keep a hold of her whilst maintaining eye contact with Flynn.

    He had attitude, it was true, and he displayed the body language of someone who could both handle themselves, not to mention a small crew, but Anark had come to the conclusion that this man looked like, smelled like, a follower - a good few rungs from the top of the ladder.

    Hutts

    He began to caress the back of the Twi'lek's smooth hand and penetrated Flynn's eyes ever deeper with his own, waving his other hand, concealed under the table, in a motion any well-travelled being would recognise as a mind trick.

    "Perhaps that cigarette has helped jog your memory? I think there was something you were about to tell me, some kind of opportunity?"

    “This...” Flynn paused, “this cigarette has jogged my memory. I was about to tell you about an opportunity.”

    The Twi’Lek cleared her throat uncomfortably, and extricated herself from Anark’s grasp. “I’ve got more drinks to serve,” she made her excuses and left.

    “There’s a uh, rather important meeting taking place, here. Just upstairs actually, room 207,” Flynn explained. “A business meeting, you could call it. Quite a few credits will be changing hands, if you get my drift.” He leaned in closer. “The parties involved have a few too many eyes and ears for some local guys like us to mess with but, someone like you, maybe...” he looked around. “So maybe you go rob them, and then if you want to make it out the door alive you slip us, say, ten percent. Otherwise we’ll make sure you don’t, give those important people back their money, and everyone wins. Except you, I mean.”

    Anark used the his now regrettably empty hand to claw at the growth on his chin as he pondered.

    They get their ten percent... unless of course we make a new friend in the other party upstairs...

    "Ten percent works," he finished his drink and wiped his lips, "be a good man and get me another," he said to Orgen, "for my trouble.

    Anark could feel an incessant twitch in one eyebrow as he leaned over the table and interlocked his fingers, all business.

    "So, how do you want to approach this?"

    Flynn smiled. “Just like I said, you go and rob them. We’ll be here when you get back, waiting for our ten percent.” He looked at his chrono, “might want to get going, meeting won’t last forever.”



    TAG: @QueenSabe7 (in the vicinity... kinda)
     
  9. NickLitYouAFlame

    NickLitYouAFlame Jedi Master star 5

    Registered:
    Feb 27, 2007
    Darth Ventris
    In Transit

    Heat. Searing. Burning. Blackening.

    His limbs were on fire. Not his perhaps. But he could feel it.

    Someone else’s voice growled out guttural and furious. “I hate you!”

    A young bearded man looked down at him with pity and sadness.

    His body was burning and he writhed in the scalding hot sand. At the edge of his senses, a dark presence reached out for him.

    His vision was fading. Black. Black. Black.

    Black.

    Ventris was on the ground. The lights above were blinding. His body was on fire and for a moment he panicked. But there was no accompanying smell. He was back. He was Ventris.

    Ventris lay on the cool metal floor. The dissonance of heat in his mind and lack of heat on his body was jarring. Ventris could feel Insipid’s presence still around him. He realized he was gasping for air, so he worked on calming his breathing. Without standing, he muttered, “That’s one hell of a staff.”

    He slowly got to his feet. His mind was still on fire and he could feel the burning still. He could also still feel that mind-shattering intense anger. It was unlike anything he had experienced in his entire life. It should have been invigorating, but in his body’s current state, all it did was make him dizzy.

    Ventris swayed and looked towards Insipid, who had turned away. He was off somewhere else, as he almost always was. Ventris had never met anyone who could get more lost in his own musings. Ventris signaled his recovery.

    “Mustafar, I suppose.”

    He realized that he didn’t know how long he’d lost consciousness, or even if he had.

    Tag: @Sinrebirth
     
  10. Jerjerrod-Lennox

    Jerjerrod-Lennox Jedi Grand Master star 7

    Registered:
    Mar 9, 2005
    OOC: A combo brought to you by myself, @Lady Belligerent and @Sinrebirth , twas a pleasure:D

    IC: Captain Lennox Jerod, Bellorum and Ike
    Location: Nar Shaddaa

    He was probably going to regret this later.

    But he didn't care at the moment, he had had some FUN!.

    Isn't that what Bellorum and Ike wanted him to do?. And it looked so tempting just to test if he could really fly since he was feeling like it.

    Just step off and-

    Woah there!, his normal was back, I don't think that's a good idea. Besides you still have to find Xander. And I think you have done enough damage for one day.

    Fair enough, he thought, but everything looked so bright and pretty and he was still on a high. But it felt like his normal personality was slowly creeping back in.

    Lennox could hear noises all around him, people speeders all loudly.moving around. And then a familiar voice saying "don't make me come over there" and then saying whether he wanted to find Xander or not.

    He looked over to where the voice was, and there was Bellorum nearby.

    "Trying to spoil my fun are you?" He said with a little giggle "Isn't that what you and your partner wanted?. I had a rather good fight down there and it felt GOOD"

    He sneered at her "Why do you care anyway about my son anyway?. I thought you were having fun too?"

    Bellorum rested her forehead against the eaves of the building, and just barely resisted banging her forehead a few times. “Look, Jerod,” she said slowly, “there’s a big difference between lightening up,” she glanced up to be sure he was listening, “and kriffing around on rooftops. Do you see us making a scene?”

    Bellorum pulled herself up and sat on the edge of the roofline before speaking again, “I don’t care about your son,” she put a hand up so he wouldn’t interrupt, “to be perfectly honest I’m not sure I care about anyone. But, that’s not important. For some reason your son is here with us and we need to find him.”

    "Making a scene?" He snorted again, "I wasn't the one performing a trick with fruit in the bar. Plus it was your partner that decided to give me a little boost. And this roof was a good place to get some fresh air, although I wouldn't consider this fresh air"

    He moved over slowly so he wouldn't end up falling off the roof. He was still slowly coming back to his senses and it felt like having a pretty bad hangover.

    "Oh, I do want to find him, maybe give him a good talking to. He has made everyone's lives difficult. I suppose I have to thank Ike for giving me a pep talk. No doubt he will be found, but then what will you do?"

    He knelt down next to her, "I decided to let my anger out, all that anger I had stored up since we came to this place. And yes maybe I didn't care about my ex wife or son. The only problem is you only care when it's too late. Maybe you should start caring, because you'll only realize when it happens that you have lost what really matters"

    Maybe it was the drugs, maybe he was rambling but he had decided to maybe give her a pep talk. It probably wouldn't work.

    Ike was relatively quiet but Bell felling Jerod that she didn’t care at all was hardly helping. Some people had bad reactions to drugs, but Jerod just seemed to have lost it a little bit.

    The blond man stepped up behind Jerod and casually placed his hands on the Imperials’ shoulders. “Lighten up, Bell. Jerod is finally himself! No more of the self-loathing the Empire encourages.” Ike’s voice grew mocking. “No carnal desires; no drink; no fun! Stiff stiff stiff.”

    The Dark Lady stared at Jerod and just blinked. He had hit a nerve, one that she kept locked away because she was a Sith. She wouldn’t allow herself the folly of caring.

    She bit her lower lip and was aware that Ike was now on the roof behind Jerod, and before she could respond to either of them she felt a warning. Grabbing the edge of the roof she pulled herself upward and landed in front of Jerod just as a voice called from below, “you up there!” It was the authorities that had been cleaning up the bar brawl that she realized now that it was the one Jerod had started.

    “Don’t move!” The officers had rifles aimed at the trio, and men in tactical gear were already scaling the building to get to them.

    “Ike,” Bellorum said softly, “do we take off towards the front, or take them head on?” Her eyes were still on the officer’s holding the guns. They had fought much larger numbers at once, but it would make a big scene if they blew up anything or massacred the entire police force.

    Ike looked from Jerod to Bellorum to the officers. "I need to let off some steam. I don't care how we do it - but Plo will probably want us to do it quietly."

    "I mean we could just push Jerod off the roof and these guys will focus on catching him." Ike looked back to Jerod. "But I'll catch you with the Force, of course." His hand lightly placed itself on Jerod's backside, poised to push.

    Ike was REALLY getting on Jerod's nerves now. One minute giving him tips, the next minute making fun of him and throwing him to the wolves.

    At least he had gotten through a little bit to Bellorum which was a win in his book.

    And now the police it seemed had caught up to him after that bar fight. Fantastic, Plo was going to probably rip him a new one for this. And even.more if he ended up in jail.

    The euphoria and happiness he had was wearing off now. He had to get back to the safety of the ship and recover. And get back to what he did best.

    "Taking them head on means you kill them" Jerod said narrowing his bright green eyes as he stood to face Ike and definitely not liking the fact that Ike was touching his backside "I know you Sith like to let off some steam as you put it, but this is the police down there. You are potentially about to have a storm headed our way, and i'm sure killing them will only make it worse"

    "Oh and trying to throw me to the wolves?. Forget it. I'm sure if i'm harmed in any way Plo will have you for it, especially to lose the Captain of the ship. I'm sure you don't want that pretty little face of yours messed up. What would Insipid think of that?".

    He turned to Bellorum "Pretty Boy here started this off in the first place by giving me a kick so to speak and I had some fun. Now it's coming back to bite us all on the backside. So, what will you do now? Take the safe option or throw ourselves into the fire?."

    Ike smiled, playfully. “Well said, Jerod. Nice to see that you have your own spine, and it’s not just Imperial this, Imperial that. We don’t need deadweight... we need Sith.”

    He eyed the advancing police and probable special forces. “We don’t unmask ourselves yet. It’s too much of a scene. But who wants to bet that your son will end up picked up by the cops too?”

    Ike’s gaze swept back to Bell. “Then we’re all in the same place, and we didn’t even have to waste time hunting for him. All we need to do is break out of prison. Easy for Sith.”

    Jerod was wondering whether he was being referred to as the deadweight here, but Ike did have a point about him and Bellorum unmasking themselves.

    He now had two options: negotiate with the police or stand back and see what happens. Both didn't seem good in a tactical sense.

    Negotiating with the police seemed a bad idea. He was still not of a sound mind because of the drugs, one misstep could see him in jail or worse dead on the ground. If Xander was in jail already he was sure he would have heard about it or Xander could escape, he knew it wouldn't take much for the young boy to do it.

    The other option was to stand back and see how it played out. The problem with that was that Bellorum and Ike could fully unleash themselves on the police, especially Ike and innocent people could die. Not to mention it could open up a whole new can of worms by killing security forces.

    Jerod shook his head at Ike "Xander won't be in jail. Putting a five year old in there?I doubt it. Besides if they did he is strong in the Force and it wouldn't take too much effort to escape. Even if he was just in a police station he'd just escape too"

    "The safest option is to avoid the security officers altogether, if we hit them head on it would just look messy. To reveal yourselves could be dangerous and possibly compromise Aryan and Hel too"

    He turned back to Bellorum "I leave this to your judgement though, Ike and me have put our points across but it is up to you. I can stand back and see what you do and provide cover if possible"

    He quickly checked his blaster which was luckily still there after the fight and made sure it was set on stun. He jammed it back in his holster and looked back up at Bellorum.

    What would she choose?

    TAG: @Lady Belligerent
     
  11. darthbernael

    darthbernael Jedi Knight star 4

    Registered:
    Apr 15, 2019
    OOC: A combo with Renn and @darthhelinith, enjoyable as always

    IC Renn Turon and Darth Henilith
    At the feast, again


    Still buzzing from adrenaline and alcohol, Helinith was only stopped from leaping at Drost by Renn, who held them apart firmly. She wriggled in indignation, waving her lightsaber hilt around and growling like a small wild creature. But the promise of more drinks quickly appeased. However, she was less thrilled when the former master interrupted their delightful progress down her throat.

    "Hapes, not Coruscant. You shall join Vizier Bo, yes?”

    Renn was, perhaps, not surprised when Lord Insipid came over to their table and completely changed the plan they had come up with. “So, Hapes, with Vizier Bo, and there’s already a ship picked out.”

    He laughed, thinking of what he knew of the Hapans. “Well craziness, I’m safe if things go wrong but you, and hmmm….Vizier Bo, well the Hapans do have a thing for beautiful people so…”

    Helinith flushed and grinned.

    “Aren’t they really into nature and stuff? They might want to kidnap you and plant you in the middle of a huge jungle forest and surround you with pretty flowers. I think you’re in just as much danger as the rest of us.”

    She nabbed the piece of candy Renn had been holding out and stuffed it in one of her belt pockets.

    “Maybe we should get little badges when we get back, saying things like ‘Ugly enough to be survive Hapes.’” She snorted with laughter at her own joke.

    Another rolling laugh as she suggested he might become one with the Hapan forest. “I doubt they’d like the result of putting me in a forest, I do still have some seed pods left, and soon enough there would be many mini me’s running around.”

    “But for now what do we need to be prepared?” Thinking, he called one of the Keshiri over and in a low tone, “Faster than you can, I need you to go to the sweet shop and buy out its entire stock of fruit rolls and similar candy and return to me with it.” He pressed a stack of credits into said Keshiri’s hands, “I expect my change when you return. If it helps, tell them it’s for the Protectors.”

    He saw Vizier Bo in the distance and remembered the suggestion that he introduce the man to Helinith. ‘Well, it certainly seems introductions will have to be made, if we are going with the Vizier to deal with the Hapans.’

    As he thought the Keshiri he had sent on the errand swiftly returned, lugging a sack almost too big for itself. It pressed the remaining credits into his hand and gave over the hold of the sack to him. Smiling, he emptied his smaller sack into the larger, ‘I should have enough, for now, to keep her happy while we travel.’

    He drank more of what had been placed before him. “Ok, I have some of our ‘supplies’ now,” said with a grin and wink at Helinith. Looking around he tried to decide what else could be done before the feast ended and the work began.

    His gaze fell on a gold plated set of armor across the room. “Oh yes, craziness, see that shiny man over there? That’s Vizier Bo, even before Lord Insipid growled at us he was suggesting working together and me introducing you to him. Since we will be, might as well get the introductions out of the way.”

    He stood,swaying just slightly, and headed in the direction of the man he’d pointed out. Getting over to Bo, he began, “Vizier Bo, Helinith, Craziness, Golden boy.” Pausing as he didn’t hear a reaction from her, he turned and realized she hadn’t caught up to him yet. “Whoops, a little early, guess I need to do so again when when she gets here.”

    Helinith blinked and realised that Renn was no longer with them at the table. "Huh, guess we'd better go meet the shiny gold dude. Come on, Master." She grabbed Serapis' droid arm and began pulling him along. "You know, this would be a lot more fun if you were some sort of four-legged model that we could ride around on."

    Seeing Helinith dragging the droid body of Lord Serapis reminded Renn that he'd forgotten that part of the introduction. When they had joined him he turned again to Vizier Bo, "Vizier Bo, Helinith and in the droid Lord Serapis, Lord Serapis and Helinith I give you Vizier Bo, our host for our trip."

    TAGS: @Sinrebirth, @darthhelinith, @DarthIshyZ, @Snokers
     
  12. Silvertough

    Silvertough Jedi Knight star 2

    Registered:
    Aug 19, 2018
    IC: Azeth Drost
    Great Feast

    Once out of sight of Henilith and her group, Drost's shambling gait eased off, quickly replaced with steady footfalls. There was no need to keep up the appearance of being intoxicated any longer, his little show had produced the desired effect. Appearances can be deceiving my friends.. You should be more careful.. A humorless smile grew on his face as he turned a corner, further taking himself out of public view. With a curl of a finger, a datapad rose out from a holster hidden beneath his robes, up into an awaiting hand. A green, blinking light on the display validated his actions, and with a satisfied nod, the datapad disappeared back into the folds of his robes. The tiny listening device had been successfully attached and activated..

    Drost turned his head back towards Henilith's group, feeling out through the force. And they remain none the wiser.. Excellent. All was going according to plan.. although Drost was sure he had heard Insipid previously order Henilith's group to Kamino, but now he was telling them to go somewhere else.. Drost scratched his head, a fresh wave of confusion washing over him for the briefest of moments. Figure that out later.. the cloner planet of Kamino is still the most valuable target announced so far. Now, how to get there?

    Drost focused on the immediate obstacle in his path, that being getting to Kamino itself. The focus brought a brief respite from the multitude of wriggling self-doubts and unanswered queries that seemed to now constantly plague his mind. Sighing, Drost turned back around from the corner, quickly falling back into the facade of being blissfully drunk. The holocron and the long-necked one will have the answers I seek.. He thought, "accidentally" bumping into one of the many Keshiri waiters scurrying around the Great Hall. He took the second to snatch a fresh goblet of wine before moving on. The two targets stood together on the far end of the hall, seemingly ignoring each other. He made sure to strengthen his own mental shield as he approached the pair, as each advancing step doused him with feelings of annoyingly vague familiarity.

    He had seen the holocron creature before.. or felt it, to be more accurate. The shape it was now was different, of that much he was sure. But the aura itself remained unchanged. Bedlam. He had felt It on Bedlam! Drost strained inwardly, flailing at memories that both were and weren't, real and incorporeal.. fact and fiction. A river of blood, the gorged Master, and then.. what? How did I get to Kesh?! The gaps in his memory was a continuous point of frustration, one that could only be solved with the gathering of more information, regardless of who it came from.. Or if they even noticed at all..

    He made a point to drain his new goblet of wine before moving near Cocytus and Soliloquy. Forcing a warm smile, he approached the pair. "Pardon the intrusion, but I wondered if your ah.. vessel had an extra seat? The mission on Kamino appears to be most important.." Drost said, taking special note to slightly slur a few of the words. Seemingly without care, he tossed his now empty goblet onto the tray of a passing Keshiri waiter. "I'm sure you can find some use for me.."

    Tags: @Sinrebirth , @Darth Cocytus , @Mitth_Fisto , @darthhelinith (mentioned briefly)

     
  13. QueenSabe7

    QueenSabe7 Chosen One star 6

    Registered:
    Mar 23, 2001
    Combo with the lovely greyjedi125 & darthbernael

    IC: Manticore, Bernael, and Leda

    Training Suite, Kesh - Part 1

    It did not take long for them to find a suitable hall to train in. Manticore found the keshiri agreeable and compliant to his commands. Their general lack of fear felt quite strange and would take some getting used to. This was yet another difference from what was true of the world before- something he would ponder at another time.

    As it was, it pleased him that Leda had agreed to join him, though at sensing that the Anzati, who perhaps allowed himself to be sensed- he did find that this pleased him as well. The more the merrier, as it were.

    Truth be told, the trio would give pause to anyone who sensed them in the force.

    A bit overwhelmed at being invited to train with Manticore, Leda had accepted without a word and fell into step just behind him as he searched out a venue. Along the way, one of those unsettling droids from the ship had approached and carelessly shoved her missing weapons at her, as if holding them had somehow been a bother for the emotionless hunk of wires. She had snatched them out of its unworthy grasp and suppressed the desire to tear it in half right there in middle of the great hall, knowing it'd be a rather ridiculous display in front of her Lord.

    After all, you only get one chance at a first impression.

    Upon entering, Manticore surveyed the surrounding for anything amiss and found nothing of note.The hall itself was suitably large, with a high ceiling. The structure was simple and functional. There was some kind of stage at the front, empty, like the rest of the room. Manticore withheld a smile as he removed his black cloak and tossed it to the side. He wore only a loose tunic and not much else, given the circumstances.

    “Welcome to the team.” He said evenly, as he began to roll his shoulders, then crack his neck, then clench his fists open and close.

    To Leda, he offered a simple nod, respectfully acknowledging her presence. His fiery eyes then tracked the Anzati for a moment, before he spoke.

    Having been nudged by Lord Insipid to join Lord Manticore and Leda in the training hall, Bernael had followed their trail to the open space. He removed his robe, ensuring everything was where it should stay, in their individual hidden spaces of the robe. He jumped lightly, landing softly, checking that his armor, which he was hardly ever without, was still comfortably positioned. Stalking forward, one hand drifted behind his back, making sure the two living kukri were locked securely in their sheaths.

    He approached the other two as they were getting ready, or so it looked. He heard Lord Manticore’s greeting, nodding respectfully at him in response, a slightly shallower nod to Leda.

    As he strode closer Lord Manticore spoke again

    “I’m Lord Manticore.” He stated.

    “To become the Dark Lord’s own apprentice; THAT is no small feat….”

    Manticore ignored the memory of a very similar experience in a past life that was no more, and focused solely on the present.

    Pausing in his stride, Bernael thought for a moment and memories flashed in his mind. “I am Bernael, a Darth in eons past and we shall see again, well met Lord Manticore. And yes, it is an honor, one I’m sure will carry many trials and experiences.”

    ‘Especially once Lord Insipid remembers our joint past.’ he thought to himself.

    Leda simply watched the exchange in silence from Manticore's left, raising a brow as she listened to this... Bernael speak. Seeing as his was a new face for her, she promptly began sizing him up rather openly, even leaning to one side to take in all she could physically see about him. With a satisfied nod to herself, she straightened and offered a lazy smile in greeting.

    Bernael felt as the third Sith present, Leda, made her measure of him. She was not circumspect about it either, rather openly and brazenly staring and moving so she could observe him better. Internalizing his amusement at such he reached up and removed his mask revealing the upward swept V of his silver eyes as well as the slits in his cheeks. 'Might as well allow you the entire view' he sent as a narrow beam thought to her.

    "Leda," she interjected to introduce herself, even though he hadn't indicated he wished to know her name. After a pause, she turned to the zabrak, rolling her shoulders a few times. She was still quite stiff and sore from so much time spent immobile.

    "My Lord, what would you have us do first?"

    Leda posed a good question, which caused the zabrak to pause for thought, albeit briefly. His questions for Bernael would have to wait.

    "Simple. First, you both attack me. At any given moment, the flow of combat may turn, if I join Leda against Bernael, or Bernael joins me against you, Leda -or just do battle for oneself. The point is to feel out the situation, adapt, overcome. Winning is not the objective here, at least not this time. Fight as you would, as you are now. Four rounds. No maiming. Understood?"

    Manticore gave a slight nod, then waited for any questions. If there were none, he would signal the beginning of the session by squaring-off and adopting a fighting stance.

    Bernael nodded in response to Lord Manticore, his claws loosened in their sheaths, tips slipping out slightly, his eyes darkening, just a hint of silver remained. Those selfsame eyes flicked over to Leda, not knowing her tactics or style, but prepared to fight with or against both her and Lord Manticore as the flow of battle demanded.

    At Manticore's word, Leda only gave a flicker of a smile. She was already on the move.

    Reaching behind her while collapsing down to a knee, she unsheathed her red-bladed short sword in a startlingly quick sequence. By the time her right knee hit the ground, her same-side hand had swung the weapon around on a horizontal arc to sweep at Manticore's legs.

    While she was fast, she attacked knowing her blade would only disrupt the air around her and connect to nothing. She had very little on the zabrak warrior, but someone had to be the one to get started. And she could not resist the opportunity.

    Bernael fell back into a slight crouch, feet at the perpendicular, watching Leda flash in. ‘She’s fast, very good to know. But how fast is he?’

    He flitted to the opposite side, unlit saber now falling into one hand, the other still on his belt. He knew Manticore would be moving to either block or avoid the saber, most likely, so it would be better to give him fewer choices as he did so. In a second it appeared that his free hand was full of daggers, and the brace of them went flying in arcs from Manticore's feet toward his shoulders. Moving still, Bernael aimed to swiftly move around behind the zabrak’s back, still just moving at normal speed.

    Inwardly, he smiled; in that same instance, his combat awareness immediately flared into focus as the engagement began.

    Leda was fast, and so was her flashing sword attack which was somewhat telegraphed. Manticore moved just as swiftly as he tucked back his lead leg, but found himself a fraction of a second too slow to counter with a snap kick to her jaw. In addition, he was fully aware that Bernael would exploit the moment. That’s what he would have done.

    The zabrak Sith Lord would not disappointed. In fact, he was quite pleased.

    Flying daggers. Bernael had made his move.

    The Azanti’s attack forced Manticore to go into a fierce evasive spin to narrowly avoid most of the daggers, save for the one aimed at shoulder level. As soon as it hit, he was already removing it with his right hand. As he turned, Manticore would be stabbing at where Bernael’s face would be if the Azanti came within striking range. He had not forgotten about Leda, as he was now vulnerable to her attack.

    Good. This was very good indeed. The Dark Lord chose well for this team.

    TBC...

    TAGS: @greyjedi125 @darthbernael @Sinrebirth
     
  14. Mitth_Fisto

    Mitth_Fisto Force Ghost star 6

    Registered:
    Sep 29, 2005
    IC: Soliloquy
    Great Feast

    Having been spurned and standing in a corner with the fish head / Emperor AI, he waited patiently for his materials to arrive to write his short missive to their leader. He could of course have merely conjured a pad and transmitted the information, but there was something truly special about the written word. Why else had highly advanced Sith societies as well as others that were sensitive to the Force kept tablets and scrolls when they had personal comms and computers?

    When the slaves, sorry, liberated and protected Kishiri servants returned he merely bowed his head as one held up a tray with parchment and inkwell upon it as the other stood ready. Obviously they thought since he did not have arms they would be dictating for him. Eye irising narrow he looked at them a moment before turning his eyes to the tray. With a caress of the Force the quill lifted, dunked and tapped before setting to writing in a language that would be unfamiliar to anyone except someone who had poured over the ancient manuscripts of long dead sith. There was few who could, after all most hired translators or merely stayed with holocrons that needed no translation whatsoever. Perhaps a language tutor for a rather old and neglected holocron with no telepathy, but otherwise none at all.

    {You were right. It was within your right to violate me as I had sworn allegiance as one of seven.
    It was within your right to 'save' a subject imprisoned, if you viewed it as such.


    Only I had saved that wisp of a soul.
    I was nursing it to mental health in the time since the battle.
    I had all but sacrificed myselves to delay for you.
    I have given up most of myself toward those ends!
    Trust has been earned,
    or. . .if not trust, then enmity.
    One to the other all flows most banally.
    Echoing breath
    Echoing fear
    Echoing death
    Echoing real
    Echoing dream
    Echoing drop
    Echoing stream
    You choose, and consequences be.
    Brutality routine.

    Alas there might even be mitigating situation, new bodies have memories as do souls.
    I offer my services in that healing venture if you desire.

    Cordially,
    Soliloquy of Valkorian's Empire.}

    Heating the paper with another exertion of the Force as the odd one approached he let the paper dry before rolling it and handing it to the Kishiri who was to be a scribe and nodding. "To the Leader." before Force nudging the correct direction.

    Turning to the carbonite experiment it had been curious in until today it growled in a garbled techno beat as lights blinked upon it's chest. "I will not require my seat. I shall exist behind you onboard." he merely stated. Well, this should keep things interesting. A buffer.

    TAG: @Sinrebirth , @Silvertough ,(Silvertough feel free to have nabbed a glance or skimming of the scroll, I believe your character is one of the few that could read it, most surreptitiously.) @Darth Cocytus , @whomever
     
  15. Sinrebirth

    Sinrebirth Immortal Mod-King of the EUC, Lit, RPF and SWC star 8 Staff Member Manager

    Registered:
    Nov 15, 2004
    IC: Darth Insipid, Lesser
    Near Mustafar

    "Mustafar it is."

    Insipid spoke softly, returning to himself. "We traveled all the way from Hutt Space to the Atravis Sector while you... slept." The staff was laying off to one side, covered by the cloak that Insipid had previously been wearing.

    "The enemy is present; if you listen with the Force, you can sense the panic of millions of refugees." He pointed out the screen to a convoy of ships, one of which was being alighted upon by what seemed to be an asteroid and a trio of tentacles. "Yuuzhan Vong ships," Insipid answered, without being asked. "They dedicated themselves back to the True Way, when one of my former apprentices made the link in their lore between the Old Ones and their deities."

    Insipid sighed. "We will have to deal with Vua at some point, but not today."

    "The staff told us to come here; I sense the son of a former Sith among the chaos."

    Suddenly, a roving hunger seemed to find them. It was feral; it was angry. A howl echoed in the Force. Insipid grimaced. "Voxyn. Jedi killers, bred from vornskr, who can hunt Force users. The Yuuzhan Vong know we are here." As if in reaction, the asteroid turned towards them, leaving the tentacle creatures to continue to gnaw at the camp ship. Other, smaller, asteroids coralled the other refugees and fired upon any escape pods or ships that attempted to flee.

    Insipid pointed at the display. "Assault cruiser. Yoric-vec. More than a match for us."

    [​IMG]

    Insipid gestured back to the rear of the shuttle. "There is a Predator fighter; stealth equipped. Hyperspace equipped, but it will do you no good until we get rid of the cruiser and its gravity wells." He eyed Ventris. "You can take it, or you can pilot the shuttle. We need to divide the shielding creatures - the dovin basils." Insipid looked rueful. "I foight in the Yuuzhan Vong War. The big one. I don't know about you, but this will be messy."

    [​IMG]

    "If we attack them from one direction, they'll focus their defenses forward and use the dovin basil to strip our shields." Insipid reached out and dialed the inertia compensator - the artificial gravity of the shuttle - all the way up. They would feel heavier, almost instantly. "This will stop it, but not for long." This was Yuuzhan Vong fighting 101, but Insipid had no idea if Ventris had even been alive then.

    Ventris kept much of his past secret, even when he had been the Dark Lord of his own faction of the New Sith Order.

    "Up to you, my Lord," he said with some wit.

    Back at the camp ship, Arek was out in orbit, but he shortly had a new danger; a coralskipper drew a bead on him. While his system tried and failed to calculate hyperspace routes out of the area, the sensors notified him of the Nune-class shuttle that was presently the target of the cruiser, which was ponderously turning its way. How much Arek knew about the Yuuzhan Vong was from the history books, and very shortly after the coralskipper noticed him he received a warning that his shields were down; the coralskipper had noticeably slowed in its approach, but succeeded in ripping the shields free.

    [​IMG]

    Not the best start, even if there was the cruiser heading outbound, its rear facing Arek.

    TAG: @HanSolo29, @NickLitYouAFlame
    ---
    IC: Darth Insipid, The Greater

    Kesh, Grand Hall

    Some of the Sith required a bit of a jostle, and the Dark Lord rolled his eyes. Hades, Morgan and Ravenous were now the issue of Zalen, but Insipid still had to corral the others. He shot a glance at Trayus, who promptly looked to Kronos, Esmerelda, Cocytus and Soliloquy. Part of the droids curiosity was working on the latter, for his new form was curious to the machine, some subroutine nagging at him. He didn’t specially mention Drost, but the Droid has no instructions not to include him.

    Insipid reached for the shadows and tugged, drawing a Keshiri into the light from a corner. The Keshiri, tall and lithe, appeared startled, and Insipid pointed from them to Bo, Helinith, Serapis, and Renn. "My latest secret apprentice, Takaris Yur. He has rudimentary training, but he will report directly to me on your progress. I expect to hear that Ni'Korish is dead within the week when we rendezvous."

    Without much else to say, Insipid swirled away from the group to find his apprentice and the others.
    --
    The Kamino Mission

    "Follow me," the droid said, curling and unfurling a hand. It led the way to the yacht that Kronos and Esmerelda had stolen from the mysterious female assailant who had attached them and proven a threat even to Insipid.

    The Sidious AI took that opportunity to whisper to Cocytus, as he had been silent for a spell. Our true work begins now.

    Esmerelda eyed the other three. "What a motley bunch."

    Trayus would have blinked if it knew how to do so, speaking with Insipid's voice. "Our instructions are to hurry. Treasures from Twilight Sun are in the Masters control," the droid said, "and we are to apply them as soon as possible. During the negotiations with the Prime Minister, Lord Insipid would suggest that you and Lord Kronos depart to slice the cloning systems." Its head rotated to Soliloquy. "We shall commission bodies as applicable." It held out a datapad for the former Holocron.

    "You are to be trusted with Lord Insipid's original genome."

    Esmerelda looked to Kronos, her expression taut. They were finally going to hunt answers.

    TAG: @Darth Kronos, @Darth Cocytus, @Mitth_Fisto

    --
    The Hapes Mission

    Takaris Yur seemed to stutter under the potential attention of so many Sith. It was new to the Sith ways, and Insipid had provided the simplest of crash courses, leaving the Holocron with him when Insipid was busy LARPing.

    "My Lord-Protectors," Yur said, bowing, before he led the way to a nondescript shuttle. They would recognise it from a raid the Sith had launched in the meantime.

    The shuttle was, in typical fashion, loaded with sweets and treats. One crate was labelled For Helinith, while the second was labelled For Ni'Korish. They had similar contents, but clearly Insipid felt the need to be clear on matters.

    Soon enough, they would need to be underway. Yur looked to Grand Vizier Bo, who was ostensibly in-charge of the mission. Yur was still in awe of all the shapes of the Protectors - wooden Renn, metallic Serapis, pale Helinith and Bo. It was quite awe inspiring. But Master Insipid had instructed Yur on how to keep his emotions concealed, and let him know that the Protectors were ruthless among their own ranks - constantly testing and pushing each other so they were the sharpest they could be should the Destructors truly return.

    TAG: @darthhelinith, @Snokers, @darthbernael, @DarthIshyZ
    ---

    Training

    In short order, Insipid found Manticore, Leda and Bernael.

    He had not extended any feelers in the Force to see how their training would go. He had appreciated Manticore taking charge and leading the way. The sooner the three of them interacted on their own terms; the better. Heading into the Core carried its own risks, and Insipid needed them to trust each other, for now.

    Insipid purely anticipated their progress, and he merged with the shadows on the walls as he progressed. Eventually, he found them, and he watched, keeping himself silent and still for the moment. With the Force, he made it appear as if he was still in the Great Hall, for now.

    What would they reveal without his eyes upon them.

    Their teaining could thus continue.

    TAG: @darthbernael, @greyjedi125, @QueenSabe7
    ---
    IC: Finis

    Groaning

    The older woman came too as he did, and Finis felt as if he had been asleep for days. Weeks, perhaps months. His entire body ached, and he sought to remember where he was. He had a flash of memory to Snoke, the emaciated man, who had tortured him on...

    ... on Bedlam.

    He came to with a start, kicking as he pushed himself to the corner of the room. There was that woman, Arach, was it? She was hiding within her arms. Similarly, there was an older female – she looked like Arach’s mother, or grandmother. She stirred, placing her hand on her forehead.

    “Oh Saix you have gotten yourself into some kind of mess here…”

    She noticed Finis and Arach a moment later. “Isa? Is that you?”

    There was some squirrelly alternate universe issues here, a lot of issues besides. Isax was from this timeline, not their one. Did she truly know Arach?

    And where were they?

    They would all feel the gaze of the walls upon them – how they met at the ceiling as if within a –

    Within a sphere.

    It was Ship, the spheroid that Finis had glimpsed while conscious for a time – a brief moment, before being returned to the dream realm.

    “Snoke has us,” Finis declared, terror in his voice. All of that? For nothing? To change one prison for another?

    There was a rumble; Ship had entered atmosphere. Even through the durasteel walls they could feel the heat of the world they were sinking towards.

    “What in the Nine Corellian Hells…?”

    Perhaps that was accurate, Finis thought, panicking.

    Maybe they were descending into Hell.

    TAG: @MoonspunDragon

    TAG: @WookieeRage, @E. L.Knight, @Lady Belligerent (please tag Lady Bel as the GM of the Kralkus hunt.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
     
    Last edited: Aug 25, 2019
  16. Darth Kronos

    Darth Kronos RPF Interview Thread Host star 5 VIP - Game Host

    Registered:
    Jan 2, 2016
    IC: Darth Kronos and Esmerelda

    Insipid's glaring red eyes beat down on Kronos, his seething rage apparent, as he assigned a mission for the two. Before he could even receive a non-verbal response from Esme.

    Kamino.

    Child experiments.

    He shuddered at the thought for a bit.

    He shuddered at the thought of Esme finding their twins suffering through horrific experiments.

    He approached her after Insipid was finished, his expression clearly apprehensive and guilty.

    Esme was glaring at Insipid, who dutifully turned up his nose at her and turned to the Hapes mission. “I hate him more than I hate Haretisch.”

    That was saying a lot, keeping in mind Haretisch intended to sacrifice her for a ritual to break one of the seals on Typhojem. Strictly speaking he had succeeded, but Kronos intervened and pulled her body free. During the Battle of Mortis her detached spirit had retaken her body, and she had attempted to keep Kronos at bay, but her feelings eventually reconnected them.

    For all the good that did.

    “Cassian, I’m fine with Kamino. The sooner we tick that off our list of potential places the closer we get to the twins.” She eyed Cocytus and Soliloquy, who had taken a new form. “An odd crew,” her gaze drifted to the reprogrammed Sentinel Droid. “Don’t you think?”

    She didn't seem mad.

    That's good.

    Right?

    He blinked excessively, returning to the present moment, and turned his gaze to Soliloquy and Cocytus - two people he vaguely remembered but didn't much know beyond that.

    "Definitely," he agreed. "You could say that again."

    He paused briefly before continuing.

    "The Kaminoan seems right at home, though." He looked at her and noticed her gaze. "But the Sentinel Droid is a wild card to me. No idea what he's all about."

    It doesn’t feel like frontline work, though.” Esmerelda tapped her chin. “I get that we’re laying the ground work for a resistance to the First Order, but surely a good offence is the best defence? Not a single plan Insipid mentioned involved taking the fight to the First Order.”

    She frowned and looked at Cassian. “Is the plan no complicated than a mass infiltration of the Republic? Or is he that scared of Snoke?” Esme hadn’t given Kronos any openings with her body language, which was still tight. She was entirely focused on the problem at hand and if he wanted to cross the divide between him and her, the Sith wouldneed to make a conscious act to do so.

    "It's all plans within plans for him. He's probably ready to sacrifice us at a moment's notice if he needs to."

    He noticed her posture. Stiff, almost unnatural, and possibly uncomfortable? She seemed distant, almost disinterested in him entirely.

    Was she still mad at him?

    He continued his thoughts. "No idea about Snoke. But I hope so..."

    He let that thought linger for a moment, locking eyes with her before stepping a bit closer. His comment wasn't meant to be taken as a genuine change of heart; more as a cheeky joke to lighten the mood.

    "Personally," he added, "I'm beginning to like the more background missions."

    Esme seemed to remember who she was speaking to and smiled, her eyes meeting his. "I am sure we'll be able to find some quiet time while the Holocron and Kaminoan go mingle."

    She kissed him, but there it was - the flash of pain of losing the children. It was different for Kronos; he hadn't really felt the children, hadn't carried them, hadn't worried about squishing them, cried over how vulnerable they were - he hadn't grown them. It wasn't his fault, but being intimate with him reminded her of them and how she had lost them.

    Emotionally, Esme closed up, but couldn't bring herself to say sorry.

    She hadn't done anything wrong.

    She'd just lost their children.

    It wasn't that she was mad at him, it was just that she was at a loss how to cope with her feelings - at all.

    Kronos stepped back with an obvious hurt expression. He noticed her tense and close up emotionally, and he couldn't help but think it was out of anger.

    "Hey... what's wrong," he asked, though he was sure he knew the answer - and was likewise afraid to hear it.

    “It’s okay, Kronos.” She was one edge being vulnerable around so many Sith.

    “We’ll talk about it later,” Esme said, smiling. She reached over and squeezed his hand.

    “I promise.”

    TAG: @Sinrebirth
     
  17. HanSolo29

    HanSolo29 Manager Emeritus + Official Star Wars Artist star 7 VIP - Former Mod/RSA

    Registered:
    Apr 13, 2001
    Combo with Lady Belligerent!

    IC: Aryan Graul, Valieri Denora, and Lenora

    Streets, then Last Resort Lounge, Nar Shaddaa

    Valieri’s sedative of choice was very powerful and she’d only planned to use it in an emergency. She’d read that it was a favorite of prison guards, and very effective, and she would be very disappointed later that she missed seeing it used in person.

    When administered, the patient would be stunned by the sudden sensation of being lit on fire at the injection site, followed by paralysis, and finally they would drop into an unconscious state.

    When Aryan managed to inject the aggravating mechanic, the man’s face was contorted into an almost comically shocked expression. He never made a sound when he fell over like a statue and hit the ground with a solid thud. The rest of those gathered didn’t seem to care that there were two unconscious beings laying on the ground, some even stepped over them to go back to their work since the show appeared to be over.

    Aryan audibly sighed with relief and slumped back against the pavement after the man collapsed, his fingers slowly unfurling from the injector as he closed his eyes. Despite the pride that surged in his chest over this personal victory, he found that he could not enjoy it. The adrenaline that had been coursing through his veins to provide some much-needed energy was beginning to disperse and fade away, leaving him susceptible to the pitfalls of his mental fatigue. He suddenly felt lost, confused, and extremely tired.

    Too tired to carry on.

    In fact, he was content to lie here and surrender himself to the peaceful bliss that sleep would afford...but he knew that would defeat the purpose of his mission. He had a goal to pursue, and he would not accept failure, not when his reputation and freedom were on the line.

    And yet…

    Aryan couldn’t move; he simply didn’t have the stamina. He could already feel himself drifting away...

    “Hey, handsome,” a sultry voice called from above, breaking into the hazy awareness that existed somewhere between wakefulness and slumber. “Strange place to settle down for a nap, don’t ya think?”

    With a sharp intake of breath, Aryan’s eyes snapped open and he sat upright, his gaze wandering aimlessly around the congested street until he finally found the source of the intrusive voice – a robust woman with wavy blonde hair was standing over him. She was roughly Aryan’s age, though it was hard to tell with the plastering of makeup that concealed her prim features. But in the case of her wardrobe, more would have certainly been better. The black dress that clung tightly to her curvy form did not leave much to the imagination; it had a plunging neckline that revealed her prominent cleavage for all to see. Aryan felt himself growing increasingly more uncomfortable in her presence, prompting a flurry of curses to slip from his lips as he stared intently at this exotic woman.

    “Whoa, shh…shh,” she cooed softly, kneeling down beside him to rest a comforting hand on his shoulder. “It’s ok. I saw the whole thing. I’d say you handled that situation quite effectively...he’ll never know what hit him.”

    The woman canted her head to regard him carefully, a lewd smile playing over her full lips as she removed her hand from his shoulder to cup his face. She then tenderly stroked his beard with prying fingers, her manicured nails needling the flesh underneath. “You looking for this?” she muttered close to his ear.

    Aryan groaned slightly and shifted under her touch, his left hand coming up instinctively to rebuff her...until he realized that she was only referring to the cane that had been left forgotten in the street. The weight of her pressing the handle into his flailing hand calmed him down to some extent, but it was clear from his demeanor that he was still fairly agitated over this strange encounter.

    Why was she helping him? What did she want?

    Picking up on his hesitation, the woman retreated from his personal space and slowly began to rise back to her feet. “A man of few words, hmm?” she remarked in a light-hearted tone, her brow lifting curiously. “I can respect that. No need to rush things. C’mon,” she reached down to link her arm through his, the other supporting him from behind. “Let’s get you up. You’ll get trampled if you stay out here like this.”

    Aryan did not utter a word in protest, nor did he put up a physical struggle. He was surprisingly cooperative, allowing her to willfully guide his movements as she worked to bring him to his feet. He was cognizant enough to understand that he required her assistance in this case, especially if he wanted to carry on to fulfill his task. Otherwise, he would be stuck here until the caregiver regained consciousness. And at that point, it would be far too late. If he wanted to prove himself, now was the time.

    “What about your friend?” she asked Aryan after he was stable and resting comfortably against his cane. She tucked a strand of hair behind her ear and nodded her head to indicate Valieri. “Think we should call a medical team?”

    He shook his head slowly and shuffled forward to grab her attention. “No,” he stammered at last, his eyes transfixed on the woman’s sturdy frame. “Prove, uh...I--whisk-ey.”

    A devilish glint reflected in her brown eyes and she smiled with understanding. “Whiskey, hmm?” She placed a hand on her hip and accepted his proposal with a light scoff. “Alright, yeah...sure. I like the way you think.” Stepping forward, she took Aryan’s arm at the elbow and started to lead him down the street, her body pressing against his in a rather sensual way. “I know just the place.”

    Aryan, completely oblivious to her advances, or of her true nature, followed along obediently. The only thing that mattered to him in that moment was finally getting the opportunity to pick up that vintage bottle of whiskey for Syren.


    A few minutes later -

    Valieri groaned as she rubbed the side of her head. “Hold on, Miss,” a deep male voice told her,” her eyes weren’t focusing yet, but she was coming around. “Someone gave you a hell of a smack on the head,” the voice continued, “we are going to bring you in and scan your pretty head.”

    When she heard that, Valieri made an effort to clear the fog from her head and find the person speaking. “No!” Was all she managed to gasp, she licked her lips to moisten them and her eyes finally focused on a uniformed medic that was leading a hover gurney where she’d been placed. “Aryan - ...,” she stammered, “I can’t.”

    The medic chuckled, “no, sweetie, it’s Joc,” he placed a comforting hand on her shoulder, “I’m going to stay with you until we are at the hospital, just try and relax.”


    Meanwhile -

    She had decided that her new friend probably wouldn’t be able to walk very far, so she took him to a place she knew on the edge of the spaceport. They stopped outside of the Last Resort Lounge and Lorna glanced fondly at the flickering neon sign. “I haven’t been here in eons, but I think you’ll love it.” Her hand tightened on Aryan’s arm and she practically dragged him inside.

    “Lorna!” The barkeep shouted as she walked in, “hey, Eddie,” she answered.

    “Bring me my usual,” she called over as she guided Aryan into a booth, “and a whiskey for my friend,” she winked at the older gentleman and slid in beside Aryan.

    “Now then,” she smoothed her skirt and smiled, “what’s your name, sugar?”

    Aryan’s eyes had been constantly wandering since they entered the dimly lit establishment; the hazy glow of the room, combined with the electronic beat of the contemporary music was beginning to trigger a nervous response. It didn’t exactly strike him as a place to pick up a simple bottle of liquor, but perhaps he only had to temper his expectations. This wasn’t Coruscant, after all. It was possible they did things differently here...like the clothing shop.

    And he had navigated that experience with little issue; he could do the same here.

    To prove himself.

    While he wouldn’t be aware of it, his obsession over proving himself – and acquiring the bottle of whiskey – was an example of perseveration. It was the aimless repetition of a task or an idea and a very common sign of brain injury.

    But any confidence he built up instantly vanished when the blonde woman unexpectedly slipped into the booth next to him. “I...umm, tha--” Aryan sputtered uneasily, trailing off with a faint gasp as she sidled up beside him and pressed her body against his hip. He closed his eyes briefly and shook his head in an attempt to compose himself. “Uh, I...I--er...Arrr--un. Arr--yan.”

    He angled his chin to study her, his left hand flexing as he continued to prattle on with nervous tension. “Wha--err, I...the, uh...whisk--frr!” Aryan dropped the cane with that last exclamation, his hand coming up to grip the side of the table. “Do...uh, I...do...whick--whisk--key...bott--this, uh...buy...right?”

    To be continued...

    TAG: @Lady Belligerent
     
  18. E. L.Knight

    E. L.Knight Jedi Master star 4

    Registered:
    Dec 4, 2012
    Darth Hades
    Preparations

    Hades sat as the medical droid tattooed his face.

    It hurt, but he was accustomed to pain. This was to dedicate himself to his new task.

    He'd tried hard to be a Sith Knight whilst serving Bellorum, but that was all gone now. Only a few remained and Hades k ew he had to truly prove his dedication.

    The patterns the droid was placing on him had been carefully chosen.

    Hades had avoided doing his face ir arms because he wanted to be able to hide in plain sight, but now, he cared not who knew he was a Sith.

    He would not be afraid. No. They would fear him instead.

    Morrigan had stayed close to him since Bedlam, but she did as he asked without question.

    She reveled in her tasks and showed pure glee in being able to do what she wanted and know it would please him.

    The droid, the same from bedlam, had insisted he be called Seward. Where he got the name was anyone's guess, but the thing had several circuits lose.

    Hades, though, did not mmind. Seward had proven very useful and as far as the Sith was concerned, the droid could keep its eccentricities.

    Time passed as Hades healed and then moved as according to Insipids plans.

    He had to admit, the Sith had chosen to do what was needed for all of them so far and Hades thought, maybe, a new Order could be forged under his tutelage.

    As Hades dressed, he felt a pang of anger. Ship has his armor. Gone with Finis and Arach.

    He was back to simple robes once more.
    TAG: @Lady Belligerent
     
    Last edited: Aug 25, 2019
  19. Lady Belligerent

    Lady Belligerent • WNU Adoptions Coordinator• star 7 VIP - Game Host

    Registered:
    Jan 29, 2008
    IC: Bellorum

    "I leave this to your judgement though...”

    Jerod’s comment brought a smile to her lips.

    “This is a most pleasant surprise, Jerod,” the Dark Lady answered. She’d been quietly scanning the growing crowd and noting locations of the authorities. Two were scaling the scaffolding, and two more were almost on the rooftops across the thoroughfare. “I think we’ve conquered any major issues now that you’re acknowledging I’m in charge,” she winked at him and then told Ike, “take the two across the way, I’ll get the two on this side. There’s a fire escape on the backside of this building,” she kept her voice just at a level for Jerod and Ike to hear. “Jerod, make for the fire escape when I signal,” she was inching back slowly, her boots sliding on the gravel roof, “when I signal again jump from wherever you are on the way down. One of us will catch you and slow your fall.”

    On the scaffolding below she’d used the Force to unscrew sections, the two men were scrambling to get to a stable panel, but it was keeping them busy. That left her free to deal with two snipers with guns aimed, but that was child’s play.

    “We go in 3...,” her boots slid back a little more, “2...,” she counted down and was slowly raising both hands. “Go!” Her hands made a jerking motion and the barrels of snipers rifles flew upward and the guns were pulled from their grasp, landing several meters behind them.

    Bellorum took a running leap off the backside of the building, not bothering to look for Ike or Jerod, she trusted them to follow through. “Jerod, jump now,” she gasped as she went over the side of the building and grasped the captain in the Force to ease him down to the ground with her.

    Tag: @Jerjerrod-Lennox @Sinrebirth
     
    Last edited: Aug 26, 2019
  20. Jerjerrod-Lennox

    Jerjerrod-Lennox Jedi Grand Master star 7

    Registered:
    Mar 9, 2005
    OOC: One last combo before I head off on my two week holiday. Brought to you by myself @Lady Belligerent and @Sinrebirth , a pleasure:D

    IC: Captain Lennox Jerod, Bellorum and Ike
    Location: Nar Shaddaa


    I wouldn't go that far though….

    That was Jerod thought to Bellorum after her statement about Lennox acknowledging she was in charge. He trusted her for this bit, but in any other situation he wouldn't. Well it depends on whether she and him could be allies…

    Meanwhile the police had decided enough was enough and were scaling the scaffolding whilst others were nearly on the roof opposite. Looked like snipers although Jerod thought it was possibly the drugs making him see things again.

    Time to get a move on.

    Ike was given instructions to deal with the two snipers as Bellorum would deal with the ones on the scaffold. Jerod nodded simply to the instructions that he would use the fire escape to get downstairs, although what was worrying was the fact he would have to jump from wherever he was down to the ground and hoped that one of these two would catch him. And he was banking on Bellorum more than Ike.

    Well, here goes nothing….

    He prepared himself to run, hoping that the drugs would give him a little adrenaline boost and not make him go funny in the head. Bellorums boots were sliding on the gravel roof so even Jerod’s Imperial boots might have trouble with this. He would have to adapt and just keg it.

    At the “Go” word not seeing what Ike and Bellorum were doing he bolted for it skidding two to three times as he ran for the fire escape and he was surprised that he was still keeping his balance. He made it to the fire escape and simply bolted down the stairs focused on just escaping this place before the police got him. And then another yell of Lennox to jump as Bellorum shot past him after her jump.

    Geronimo….

    Adrenaline coursing through his veins he didn't think he just kept over the railing feeling the invisible force of Bellorum catching him and bringing him gently down to the ground. He would have yelled his head off in joy but decided against it.

    He landed on one knee giving a nod to Bellorum in thanks, raising his blaster up with one hand, using his other hand to balance his blaster arm and scanning the area waiting for Ike to arrive.

    “Outstanding, where to next?”

    Ike didn't need to be quite so dramatic, what with the Force buoying him as he ran, but Jerod did falling with style well, he had to say. His sarcasm was almost satisfying, and as Ike joined them - for Bell would precede him as the stronger Force user anyway - he grinned.

    "Next, we get going." Ike eyed Jerod's feet. "I may have to requisition a pair of those boots."

    But the Force seemed to resonate with something, and Ike struggled to pick it up in the moment. "Bell, what was that?"

    The Force beat with danger now, eclipsing whatever Ike had sensed. The police were on the move. Ike reached out and smothered their heat signals, frowning at the exertion, but a cop could just see them, and sensors wouldn't matter.

    Bellorum landed beside Ike and quickly looked around before answering his question. “It was something we will address once we ditch the authorities, come on prize fighter,” She motioned for Jerod to follow as she took off down the narrow alley.

    They needed some distance between them, and maybe a change of clothing since they were probably pulling holocam feeds from the area and would be blasting their images.

    “In here!” She ducked into a mass of beings going into a large shopping pavilion. It was mostly open air with only a few sections that went into smaller buildings. They stayed towards the middle of crowds to keep concealed, she needed something the opposite of the black garb she was wearing.

    “Up ahead,” she told Ike and Jerod, “just get something that’s not too outlandish,” she said to Ike with a smile as she we directly into a costume shop. “We will discard our clothing in separate bins after we leave.” Bellorum grabbed a handful of white clothing she’d spied and whisked them into a changing room.

    Moments later she stepped out as a nurse. She tugged the skirt down as far as possible and asked a clerk for some tights without seams and rhinestones. The man went into a back room and returned with the tights and had thoughtfully brought a skirt that was a bit longer. “Thanks,” Bellorum said and went back into the changing room. She hadn’t seen Ike or Jerod, so she hoped that meant they had found something to try on.

    No….just no.

    That was Jerod’s thought as he went into the costume shop. He understood trying to hide and be inconspicuous, but dressing up in costume? This was not his forte. Hell he had never dressed up in costume once. It felt embarrassing.

    He had been humiliated enough but basically being drugged up to the nines, now this?

    And since Ike had been looking at his boots he resolved to find a costume to keep them with him. And with his uniform gone he would have to raid the storage bins again back on the ship. Hopefully they still had stuff left. Plus he would have to find a place to keep his blaster, he wasn't losing that either.

    It felt like the drugs were wearing off more now as his own personality and thinking was coming back and the adrenaline he had been feeling was dissipating slightly as well as sounds returning back to normal as was his vision. At least everything didn't look so neon now.

    Time to have a quick look, can’t be too long here.

    He had a look around. Perhaps a pirate?. No too outlandish. Maybe secret agent from on of those spy holomovies he liked?. He did always look good in a suit….

    Something caught his eye though. Ah this might do….

    He came out in a white shirt that was slightly open to show off some of his chest, light brown trousers with his Imperial boots on underneath his trousers, leather style jacket and a fedora style hat. It came with a brown belt on the trousers and a brown bag so he could hide his blaster. Plus it also came with a whip which Bellorum and Ike would like. Hopefully he would not have to use it.

    It felt rather funny to be in something else other than a uniform but hopefully this would hide his face for a bit until they got back to the safety of a shuttle.

    After all, who was looking for someone dressed like an archeologist?.

    They had taken all the changing rooms. Rolling his eyes somewhat, Ike eyed the shop, flicking a hand to blur what cameras hadn’t already been, and just stripped off in the shop. Customers backed away, and the owner shouted at him.

    “Calm down, I’ll keep my pants on.” He gestured to the gaudy underwear. He caught a woman looking appreciatively at his form, and Ike winked, thanking the Force for the hint. “I do shows for ladies parties. If you want to see the rest,” he shook his hips provocatively, and the woman squealed in-spite of herself. “Give me your number and I’ll see if I can fit you.”

    She began to frantically write down her number on a piece of flimsi. Ike smiled, allowing his natural charisma to encourage the shopkeeper to be grateful for his display. Well, it wasn’t natural as Insipid had tweaked this body to emit a certain...

    Ike shook his head. Thinking of his husband wouldn’t help him here. The woman rushed over, flimsi in hand, and Ike simply looked at her. Taking the cue, she tucked the paper into the lip of his underwear, smiling voraciously. Ike turned his back to her, leaning down to grab his lightsaber from his discarded clothes, and eyed a black cloak - the finishing touch to some festival outfit.

    The weather here was somewhat muggy on the best of days, so a light cloak would be handy. He drew it from the hangar, and regarded the zipped inner pockets - one on each side. He plopped his hilt in one, comlink in the other. Then he realised the hood had a black veil, which allowed him to see out but, on checking, nobody to see out. He draped it over his face, and regarded himself in the mirror, content that the cloak swaddled him in full, and enjoyed that the veil meant that he appeared to be faceless, his features consumed in shadow. His hands were pale when showing, in stark contrast, so he grabbed a pair of black gloves to complete the ensemble... rueing that Jerod’s boots would have finished it off.

    Ike turned to the others, a surreal wraith, evoking an old, old, old ghoul from time immemorial.

    [​IMG]

    “I come for your soul and truth,” he intoned, before giggling.

    Bellorum exited her dressing room and her breath caught as she saw Jerod dressed as an archeologist. He couldn’t know how she’d grown up in dig sites, very few knew anything of her past. She pressed those memories aside and touched the whip, “nice touch there, Jer,” she said with admiration.

    “I was sure you’d have been a fairy godmother or a priest,” she laughed and grabbed Ike’s hand, “let’s pay and get moving.”

    The trio left the shop and blended in with the other inhabitants of Nar Shadaa. “I need food,” Bellorum said, “let’s find something so Ike and I can discuss recent developments,” she glanced around for a cafe, “no alcohol for you this time,” she smiled at Jerod. For some reason she couldn’t resist teasing him because he was so serious.

    Jerod shook his head at Ike’s shenanigans but he had to admit it was a rather good costume to use. It was so conspicuous it was inconspicuous.

    Bellorum dressed as a nurse, well it was better than dressing in something that showed off everything. And she seemed impressed enough with Jerod’s choice even calling him Jer. He would rather be called by his first name Lennox if she had decided to be friendly with him but Jer would do.

    And he would never dress up in drag, besides, pink didn't suit him. And a priest? Not his style either. Plus with his red hair he did rather stick out. At least with this fedora on his hair was hidden. His bright green eyes however would be more noticeable.

    Bellorum mentioned food and Lennox’s stomach rumbled. After being hit with a drug boost he needed something to perhaps settle his stomach a little, he wondered what was around here to eat, hopefully it was clean, well perhaps a little bit clean.

    He spotted a place along the way, still inside the shopping pavilion. It looked okay, but you never knew with places like this. A nice little cafe would do for now where Ike and Bellorum could have their chat and he could get a quick update from Azzurri as to what was going on upstairs.

    “Over there” he said pointing to the cafe “I don’t know what they do there but it seems good enough to lay low for a while” and he did not mention so that he could recover from being drugged. He needed a sit down after his exploits and escaping the police.

    Well for now anyway.

    Time to rest for a bit and let Ike and Bellorum chat it out until he was needed.

    TAG: @Lady Belligerent , @Sinrebirth (for their chat)
     
    HanSolo29 , DarthIshyZ and QueenSabe7 like this.
  21. Mitth_Fisto

    Mitth_Fisto Force Ghost star 6

    Registered:
    Sep 29, 2005
    IC: Soliloquy
    Kesh, Grand Hall

    Some of the Sith seemed to loll into the simple pleasures of the banquet. Insipid had shot a glance at Trayus, who promptly looked to Kronos, Esmerelda, Cocytus and Soliloquy. A wonderfully cheeky affectation cascade that was very laughable. At least part of him thought so. What was part of him was less the question as was how well those parts worked, trapped for the time being in a middling shape, a body between desires instead of exemplifying any. They were. . . .meh.

    Without much else to say, Insipid swirled away from the group to find his apprentice and the others.
    --
    The Kamino Mission

    "Follow me," the droid said, curling and unfurling a hand. It led the way to the yacht that Kronos and Esmerelda had stolen from somewhere. Honestly they were tramps and thieves, what an interesting height to fall from deity fighters to this.

    Esmerelda eyed the other three. "What a motley bunch."

    A bark of laughter or catching gears grated from Soliloquy at that remark. It mirrored their own thoughts a little too closely. Trayus speaking with Insipid's voice had something to say on the matter. "Our instructions are to hurry. Treasures from Twilight Sun are in the Masters control," the droid said, "and we are to apply them as soon as possible. During the negotiations with the Prime Minister, Lord Insipid would suggest that you and Lord Kronos depart to slice the cloning systems." Its head rotated to Soliloquy. "We shall commission bodies as applicable." It held out a datapad for the former Holocron.

    "You are to be trusted with Lord Insipid's original genome."

    The draping robes snapped forward like the living things they were and, apparently absorbed the datapad into their folds which shifted a few times before the item vanished perfectly into the natural drapery. "Does he believe himself ready?" Soliloquy simply asked, a passing question. "Will he require that we use that genome?"

    TAG: @Darth Kronos, @Darth Cocytus, @Sinrebirth
     
  22. Jerjerrod-Lennox

    Jerjerrod-Lennox Jedi Grand Master star 7

    Registered:
    Mar 9, 2005
    OOC: An extension to my last post authorized by @Lady Belligerent :)

    IC: Captain Lennox Jerod, Enzo Azzurri
    Location: Nar Shaddaa


    Lennox took a seat nearby Ike and Bellorum so he could observe and if he was needed, act accordingly. It was good to finally take a rest after all that had happened.

    Getting drugged, having a rather nasty fight and then trying to escape the police. It did take it out of you and despite the fact that Jerod kept himself toned and fit and had regular exercise even all of this could be exhausting.

    Time to check in.

    Luckily he had tucked away his comlink and datapad along with his blaster in the bag that came with the archaeologist outfit. He was getting a few stares about carrying a whip but they probably thought he was either an archaeologist or a mercenary and carried it for show. Lennox didn't mind so long as nobody decided to pick a fight with him.

    He opened up his comlink and kept his voice quiet so no-one could try and listen in.

    “Jerod to Dark Dreamer, come in Azzurri”

    There was a pause before the young Lieutenant came on the line “Azzurri here, go ahead sir”

    “Anything happening upstairs I should know about?”

    “Negative so far, although if I have to play one more game of “I Spy” with Carrusco and the navigator i’m going to scream”

    Lennox chuckled, the two Lieutenants were well used to working with each other, however Carrusco new found sense of humour did seem to grate on the nervous and a little more serious Azzurri.

    “Well at least it will keep you occupied. You know how Carrusco hates to be bored. You could let him try and give you a flying lesson”

    There was a snort over the comm, “You and I both know sir that I would just crash the ship. Any news on your son?”

    “Not been found yet” Jerod said with a sigh “We have had to take a little detour due to a….disturbance” which was caused by me he didn't say but the Lieutenant didn't need to know that yet “Myself, Bellorum and Ike have had to dodge the authorities but we seem to be safe for now. Any updates on the others?”

    He could mentally see Azzurri shake his head “Nothing yet, no-one has returned yet. Hold on….” he suddenly said and there was some rustling going on then a call of “What’s going on?” from Carrusco.

    Azzuri came back on the line and his nervous demeanor was back “Sir can you get back to the shuttle as quickly as you can?”

    This didn't sound good, Jerod’s green eyes scanned the area to see if the police had arrived and had found them. Nothing yet.

    “What’s going Azzurri?” he asked still scanning the area and seeing if Ike and Bellorum had sensed anything yet. And Lennox nearly slipped in a Lieutenant as a force of habit but luckily stopped himself. His Imperial instincts were kicking back in again after the euphoria.

    “Getting comm traffic here about something going on. Not sure what yet but it does not sound good. I think sir you might be better to head back to the shuttle and I can update you or you may get an update from someone. I feel sir you might be safer there for now”
    Jerod sighed. It looked like he had been sidetracked long enough from his quest to find and bring Xander back. But he had to trust his former Lieutenant and trust that he was doing the right thing. He wouldn't ask Jerod to head back to the shuttle unless it was a genuine emergency. Hopefully Ike or Bellorum would find Xander or one of the others if they were all still down here. Lennox had to trust them now.

    Jerod got up, shooting an apologetic look at Ike and Bellorum, he wouldn't have time to explain, hopefully he could later. They may not be too happy that he had gone off, and maybe they thought he was off to start another fight. But if this sounded like an emergency, the best thing to do was follow instructions and retreat back to the shuttle.

    “Roger that” he replied “I’ll see if I can find a quick route back. If you get anything else, let me know. Meanwhile, stand by. Tell Carrusco not to deviate from the present course, any false move here could set off alarms. Keep an eye on the comm traffic and if this affects the others, get them back to their shuttles ASAP”

    “Yes sir”

    Jerod kept his comlink on just in case and pulled his tired body out of the chair. Food would have to wait until this was sorted. As he strode away from the cafe he pulled out his datapad and pulled up the map Azzurri had sent him when he first arrived here. He managed to map out a route and memorized it before putting his datapad away and quickening the pace.

    He was back at the shuttle a while later and had managed to avoid the police, either because of his costume or because they were still busy cleaning up the mess Jerod had created. Xander was still out there, alone and with untrained Force powers. Who knew what chaos and destruction he could cause. But work was work and he had to put this emergency first although he would have to have a lot of explaining to do when he got back aboard Dark Dreamer.
    He arrived in the cockpit and told the pilot to warm up the engines as they may need a quick getaway if things got too hairy.

    It was now a waiting game.

    TAG: @Lady Belligerent , @Sinrebirth
     
  23. darthbernael

    darthbernael Jedi Knight star 4

    Registered:
    Apr 15, 2019
    IC Renn Turon
    The Shuttle


    After speaking to and introducing the others in the little group of chaos to Vizier Bo, Renn had seen Lord Insipid make one last announcement, of a secret apprentice, a Keshiri. The being obviously still saw them as the Protectors of Legend and was not much forthcoming as a result.

    After the announcement, Renn took his leave, to check himself and make sure he still had everything he believed he would need for the upcoming trip. This was simple as all he had, all he needed was on the resizeable equipment belt he wore, or hung from their slings. Even the bag of candy was in its place. He stopped one of the multitude of Keshiri going about their business in the halls and inquired directions to the landing pads, which turned out to be the same as those in the future Kesh.

    ‘These purple guys certainly are different from the ones I recall, more timid for one. I can sense force energy in them but it’s not the same. Darn it I should have asked the vampire before he disappeared.’

    He continued walking, staying clear of the other groups of Sith as they dispersed to their various missions, which was tough as most were also headed to the landing pads to depart. He finally arrived, and joined the rest of the party as the new guy, 'whoops, Lord Insipid’s secret apprentice' he thought, led them to the shuttle they were to take.

    When he boarded, Renn groaned, ‘Frack it I should have saved my credits, Lord Insipid one up’ed me and bought not just Craziness but also Grape a whole box of candy each.’ He stowed the bag of candy he had, hung his equipment belt near an open space, and looked around. As with most ships, he was already ducking, but to shrink further would mean increasing his density quite a bit and knowing pilots they wouldn’t like what that did to their mass/balance calculations.

    So, while he was sure the others would take and use the comfortable looking seats, he’d squat and adjust his position as needed with the craft’s maneuvers. For now, he just studied the Keshiri apprentice of the Emperor, wondering what he truly thought of all this, and what would happen when he discovered they weren’t the all powerful beings he thought they were.

    TAGS: @Sinrebirth, @darthhelinith, @Snokers, @DarthIshyZ
     
  24. darthbernael

    darthbernael Jedi Knight star 4

    Registered:
    Apr 15, 2019
    OOC: Another fun combo with @greyjedi125 , @QueenSabe7 , and the one and only @Sinrebirth

    IC: Manticore, Bernael, & Leda - w/Lord Insipid
    Training Suite, Part 2


    As soon as Leda snapped into action, everything became naturally fluid - muscle memory and mental tactics playing out across her body and mind as if she had suffered no recent injury at all. It was like a breath of fresh air to be physically active again, to do what she did best. The only sign of her time spent asleep would be her fatigue, which was creeping up on her too rapidly to go unnoticed.

    She'd be damned if she allowed it to show at such an important moment as this, when she could impress someone she admired. To gain praise - also an instinctual need from before, whether harmful or beneficial, it carried over easily enough now.

    Leda caught the booted foot that came at her face the moment her sweep missed its mark, her free arm coming up to protect herself though Manticore's counter was strong enough to send her sprawling backwards as he then shifted to tend to Bernael's clever attack. Allowing momentum to carry her into a shoulder roll, she sprung back up to her feet and launched herself back into the fray and to the zabrak's open side, as his right was focused solely on the other Sith.

    It was a quick one-two strategy; she feinted once towards Bernael, aiming to appear to be teaming up with Manticore against the newcomer, but in a quick flick of her wrist she switched hands. The hilt of her sword now in a back-handed grip in her left, to which she slashed out at the fabled warrior's mid-section on an outside-in arc.

    Bernael’s saber hand came up a hair at the beginning of Leda’s stroke then he dropped it back down and bounded forward as she switched hands and went for the zabrak Lord. He sped up his reflexes, his speed just a hair and as he came close to the open side, he swerved slightly right and went low, his saber flicking to his left hand, alighting as it moved, and sweeping in from the back, aimed at the back of Lord Manticore’s right knee. He continued his movement, coming back up and flipping direction to prepare another strike, whether Lord Manticore turned to face him or defended against Leda’s strike.

    Ahh, the thrill of combat was intoxicating in ways that were not easily describe outside of the experience itself. Manticore was being forced to remain on the defensive, by Bernael and Leda’s combined attacks.

    That fact that she actually did not team-up with him despite appearances, was commendable on many levels. An assassin that was easily read was a dead assassin as far as he was concerned. Conversely, Manticore’s intercepting stab to Bernael’s face missed entirely and Leda made good on exploiting the opening. The zabrak Sith Lord was also still in motion, still spinning, as he took Leda’s slicing sword attack to his flank due to his rotation -which minimized the severity of the blow. If he felt it, there was no indication of it.

    In the Force, he sensed Bernael’s rate of motion increased just enough to almost go unnoticed. Almost. The Azanti was attacking low, while Leda was attacking at mid level. So he too called for a momentary boost in the Force.

    Manticore suddenly performed a flash kick, for several reasons. Primarily, to spoil Bernael’s saber attack. It was best to avoid anything the Azanti was planning- as he was moving too fast to be avoided altogether; by the time he reacted to the weapon igniting, it would have been too late. For his foresight, Manticore was rewarded with a saber burn to his calf, instead of a maimed leg. The secondary effect was to deter Leda from a follow-up attack -that is, if she valued her nose. He would be a fool to underestimate her.

    While in mid air, Manticore launched the dagger he had in his right hand at Leda’s chest, while calling a second one to his left hand. He came down, striking at air, where Bernael should have been. The Azanti had continued his motion and flipped to one side. That one was cunning. Good. Very good.

    Without breaking stride, Manticore called the third and last dagger to his free hand as he now rushed full speed at Leda.

    His intent was to engage and disable her under a flurry of dual dagger strikes at very close range- as well as test her sword play. His plan for Bernael was different.

    So far, he’d suffered a stab to his shoulder, a cut to his side and a burn to his lower leg. So why did it look as if he was….smiling?

    Having clamored backwards to evade another one of Manticore's boots flying at her face, Leda had no time to reconfigure her steps before he changed course and came for her - a single dagger thrown out ahead of him as he charged.

    Still off balance enough to be a point of distraction, she managed to swat the flying blade out of the way with a shove with her free hand, the Force sending it clattering off somewhere to the side. Continuing to pull on that selfsame current into the dark, she labored to stay upright as he towered over her by much more than a head. Though knowing she had struck his left side in some fashion, she decided quickly to go for that exact area and exploit any injury no matter how small.

    A loud grunt of effort brought Leda's sword back to her dominant right hand and she jabbed in once quickly for that vulnerable spot, intending to spin out to her left to get out of his path if something didn't stop her first. Her smaller size could work to her advantage here, but she was not so prideful to think Manticore wouldn't have a countermeasure already in mind for an opponent like her.

    Behind his mask one would possibly be surprised to see the Anzati Sith smiling as well, combat had been enjoyable since he’d come to this place, but this was even more so. He free hand reached out, in a minute gesture, and the dagger that Leda had deflected came whizzing back toward the group, in an arc that made it appear Leda was it’s target, but truly aimed at Lord Manticore. As Leda attacked he Pushed the zabrak, allowing the energy to also force him back a step or two, giving him more range. He sensed that even if he camouflaged himself Manticore would be able to track him, something he’d have to inquire about later.

    Instead he flashed to his right, behind the zabrak, to get both Sith in view and once Leda was in view, he sent a spurt of lightning directed to intercept the same spot Leda’s blade was aimed for, at the instant her blade would make contact. Two on one doesn’t mean both must attack directly he thought as he moved again, until the three of them formed an extended triangle, Leda and Manticore at the two lower points and he at the tip. Lightning continued to crackle between the fingers of his free hand as he waited to see what surprise the Lord had in mind as he took them both on.

    The sinister smile never left his dark countenance as combat among the three of them continued. The crescendo was slow and measured, which made it all even more palatable.

    Manticore was ready for Leda’s strike to his wounded side. He expected such an attack and would have been surprise if no attempt was made to aggravate it at some point during the engagement. Who could resist such bait? Deftly, he caught her blade with his left dagger in a parrying motion, sparks flying from the metallic impact as he sought to set her off-balance, but she was already spinning out, defeating his attempt.

    The former Sith Executor was fully aware of the dagger in ‘free play’ being controlled by Bernael. It came around, streaking towards Leda under the Anzati’s control. Manticore knew better. It perhaps would come as no surprise to Bernael that Manticore’s back only appeared defenseless for that moment. The dagger careened off as it hit an unseen barrier, but Bernael’s push caused the zabrak to pitch forward- so he simply rolled with it and tumbled. The lightning spurt however, struck home.

    Manticore came up to his feet almost instantly, with what sounded like a growl, but it wasn’t one of pain.His upper tunic burst into flames as he flexed, shedding the burning strips from his torso -which was now exposed, his eponymous tattoo now in full view.

    Pain for him was not what it was for others. To the zabrak, it was galvanizing.

    “That….tickled.” He commented with a dark chuckle. His eyes seeming like burning embers, hungering for more.

    In his last moments on Mortis, Manticore was engaged in mortal combat against one of his greatest adversaries; Darth Haretisch, Night Herald of the Sith Triumverate. Manticore was witness to how a single barrage of the Night Herald’s sith lightning was capable of obliterating any living target and turn it into a smoldering corpse. In that moment, the darkside had inspired him, revealed to him a half-measured defense.

    Using his Darkside Mastery over flames, Manticore was able to mount a defense enough to inflict a mortal wound on the Night Herald, before being slain himself. It is that same technique that now allows him to mitigate similar attacks- as he now secretly hunts for a known skill that will break that chain.

    Now, the synergy of combat. It was happening. With each pass, Leda and Bernael were improving their coordinated attacks- without so much as a word. This is exactly what he needed to see for himself. This is what he needed in a team of Sith. Bernael was always on the move, his measured cunning evident in his attacks. Leda was lethal and able to intuit the flow of battle. Hmm. Was this...a gift? or a trick? Perhaps a bit of both.

    There was a brief pause.

    Then, there was a surge of darkside energy, as the zabrak’s growl increased in intensity and his Dark Rage began to surface, his stance lowering. The three of them were at equal distances in their combat triangle. In a flash, Manticore sped towards Bernael, propelled by force speed. He came at the Anzati like a shot from a blaster cannon, and would elbow him in the chest with enough force to launch him against the wall if he was not able to mount a proper defense.

    These two were martially proven and worthy combatants- and opponents- beyond a doubt. That was no longer a question.

    Only two remained.

    ~

    Insipid glowered at the back and forth.

    Leda has recognised worthy opponents and her intuition was allowing her to remain one step ahead of matters. Bernael, though formidable, would be likely draining his reserves with this bout. That pride of his, pushing him to do so. Manticore was revelling in the fight; Insipid had not witnessed his battle to the death with Haretisch, but he had glimpsed his incredible battle with Grandmaster K’Kruhk above Coruscant, and he knew Manticore was an intimidating foe.

    But they each had their secrets, known and unknown, and that was simply a fact of Sith. How much of this fight was just their pride forcing them forward, or reasoned manipulation? Insipid trusted Manticore utterly, and Bernael had been pushed to their realm by his lesser part, so must have been trusted by him, but Leda was all curiosity from Lord Insipid. He knew less about her than he did any of the other Sith; even Soliloquy, who was replete with nuance - his Holocron shell could be carbon-dated to some 35,000 years ago. It gave Insipid a starting point. Leda had none of that, and he had suspected her absence from the War of Three was something other than mere coma; which is why he had committed effort to picking her up.

    The battle continued, and Insipid allowed it to. He would not interfere in this most sacred of rite; for Sith to battle beside each other, they must find kinship, and one learns more about another through a bout than discourse.

    Flesh spoke volumes.

    Insipid absently wondered; what did that mean, for those who had abandoned flesh?

    ~

    There was no chance to see or think what Leda would do now as the zabrak flew at him. In a fraction of a second Bernael's eyes shifted to flat black and he dropped as though his legs had been chopped out from under him. Knowing, in a straight fight he would not match the Lord he had to work the fringes, using as little energy as possible while wearing the stronger fighter down.

    A gesture and oval of Defensive energy formed over him, almost just in time. As the zabrak hit he could feel the force of the blow, armor absorbing a high percentage of the power of the blow but not all of it. His back slammed into the floor, his saber flying from his shocked fingers off into the distance, and he shook his head momentarily to clear it his feet shot out to catch Manticore's as he charged. Between the defensive energy and his positioning it still squirted him like a seed shot from a fruit when it was squeezed.

    Rolling over backwards he got his feet around just before they hit the wall. He heard a crunch at the strength of his impact with the wall, cracking it and, he felt, straining his right knee. Bending his knees, hands pressing against the floor as he pushed off, he shot back toward Manticore. As he flew he drained a lesser soul stored in his mind to ensure he didn't drain the remainder of his reserves too much. His shoulder squared up as he aimed for Manticore's uninjured leg.

    Leda, meanwhile, was given the luxury of a brief rest, which she reluctantly found she needed. The prolonged disuse of her muscles were now causing them to tighten, this on top of the increasing weight of exhaustion and she knew she had to be careful how she proceeded. Annoying.

    Having successfully spun out of Manticore's path and boosted on by Bernael's combined attack with her own, his crackle of lightning had struck where her blade did not but the peripheral energy of it still reached her - a sizzling burn that ran up her sword to her hand and on through to her shoulder. She managed to regain her balance in full as the other two made eyes only for each other, her body turning along with the direction of the fight while she tried to shake the numbing tingle from her arm. There was an ache there now that hadn't been there before, but she paid it no mind. Instead, she was seething with each panting breath.

    They had left her behind.

    Manticore's rage was palpable and Leda fed on the surge of emotions as he barreled down upon the Anzati, Bernael in turn defending himself, a true show of their combined brute strength both physically and in the Force. She was no match with the former, but smaller did not necessarily mean weaker. An idea...

    Bernael had just lunged back towards the Zabrak and Leda seized her window back in, matching her jump to come at Manticore from behind. She absently wondered if he realized he had put himself squarely between them... of course he did. Regardless, she was committed, pulling further on the mounting storm of energies that connected each of them, pouring strength into her next move. She couldn't be certain but she intoned Bernael's body language quickly, him leaning low so she went high. Shouting as she emitted a small but potent pulse of Force Blast to lead her path in, whether or not the invisible attack did anything to her target, she was still in line to drop down on him with a two-handed stab from overhead. Though she had switched her grip again - if she struck him anywhere near his horned skull it would be with the blunt end of her hilt, not the sharp edge of her blade.

    No maiming, she whined internally.

    Now, Bernael defended well against Manticore’s speeding elbow attack and managed to mount an attack of his own, lunging towards the zabrak- aiming for his legs. The Anzati had telegraphed his attack; seeing this, Manticore spun out from the liner assault, fully intending to stab Bernael in the shoulder as a way of ‘returning the favor’ despite knowing full well that the Anzati was protected by body armor. The act was meant to be symbolic, but it never happened.

    As Manticore spun to avoid Bernael, he was caught in Leda’s Force Blast-which spoiled his attack on Bernael and caused him to go off-balance. He could feel her dark and exquisitely controlled vexation at having been ‘ignored’. He heard her announce herself as she yelled, but the Force Blast was a pleasant surprise. Leda had escalated her offense to match the combat theatre, attacking almost in-tandem with Bernael. Now it was Manticore’s turn to skid along the floor on his back- and just in time to raise a two dagger block in an ‘X’ shape to catch her downward strike.

    Sparks flew again from the impact of Leda’s blow. She’d used her high jump, as well as the force of gravity to lend strength to an already mighty blow.

    From his position, Manticore glanced up at the pommel of her weapon with some bemusement, then at Leda’s form as she basically straddled him upon landing. He then stared straight into her eyes. Had it been the bladed end of her sword facing him, the scene might look quite different. Manticore gave her a slight nod, then his expression hardened. In an instant, he undulated his diaphragm in a ‘snap’, causing a localized force shockwave, which would unceremoniously dismount Leda if it caught her unawares.

    Leda, having landed squarely on top of the Sith Lord's chest in a successful quest to catch him off-guard, had a short-lived moment of triumph. She smirked in the briefest of seconds, connecting her eyes to his and knowing she had made her mark. Naturally, he opted to return her surprise with one of his own, her attentions lapsed, sucker punched by the Force and tossed backwards into a unattractive heap.

    She rolled to a stop on her back, grimacing against the pain and grinding her teeth in frustration. In a huff if slightly embarrassed, the warrior got her feet back under her and braced for the next move that turned out, would never come.

    As he flipped back to his feet, the former Sith Executor made the mental note that Leda had followed the ‘no maiming’ instruction.

    He managed a quick flourish with the two daggers, then raised his hand to call an end to hostilities while handing the two blades to Bernael.

    Combat could begin or end suddenly. A disciplined warrior needed to recognized these signs if he was to survive to fight another day. None of them fought at full strength, that he knew full well. This was more of an ‘introduction’ than anything else- and now they knew more about each other than they had mere moments ago.

    Bernael rolled over, away from Manticore's attack, even as it was foiled by Leda's own attack. He came to his knees and then his feet as she went flying. His right hand reached out and the saber he'd lost came flying back into it. Just before he ignited it, he observed Lord Manticore call an end to the training duel.

    Sheathing the saber, he took his two daggers back from the Zabrak, reaching out again and calling the other four back, then replacing them in their own sheaths. As he did so he released his own combat energy, eyes returning to silver and talons retracting.

    Then Lord Manticore moved on to a less combat related and more interview, learning, phase of their introduction.

    “Well met, both of you.” Manticore declared with a nod towards his two new teammates.They had stayed focused on their target and did not allow themselves distractions. Very good.

    Calmly, he took a deep centering breath, then exhaled. Manticore adopted an ‘at ease’ stance, with arms clasped behind his back and his feet apart at shoulder width. His new wounds were visible on his bare torso, but he paid them no attention. Or any of the fading marks left by Snoke’s cultists, or from countless other battles.

    “Which one is greater...?” he asked, his tone slightly more serious.

    “The Mission, The Code or Self-Preservation?”

    The Zabrak grew silent and patiently waited for either Leda or Bernael to respond.

    Leda re-sheathed her sword and brushed back the chunks of silvery locks that had come undone in the flurry of activity. She relaxed instantly now that they were done, though her breathing remained somewhat out of control. However, she knew her answer straight away and got it out in between breaths.

    "The Code," she responded with a nod.

    Self-preservation, her mind followed to counter.

    "The Code," Leda began again, her voice stronger as if to shout at the incorrect thought and empty herself of it. She looked intently towards Manticore after a glance for Bernael, raising her chin and appearing resolute. "It is our foundation. The Mission is only... successful because of the Code we follow, same as we survive... because of it."

    One of her hands came over her stomach and rested there, feeling bruises beginning to well-up under her skin from the zabrak's last attack. She had much more work to do, to return to peak form.

    A pause while Bernael considered the question. He listened as Leda gave her own view. As he listened he knew that their viewpoints were different, but for their own reasons.

    He considered how he would answer. Working with these Sith was important and they deserved as close to the full response as possible. When she finished he allowed another pause before he began.

    "I come from a different age, a different viewpoint. The Code, yes, is important to the Sith, it validates their freedom, their individuality, their power, but it is just words, in the end."

    "Self preservation, any being would be lying if they said they did not tend toward actions that offered, at least, the hope of self preservation but sometimes that becomes an option that is not available."

    And this became the point where he had to consider his words most carefully. In this time there was technically only himself and his younger self who understood what he was dedicated to.

    "To me, the Mission is that of utmost importance. The Code can be worked around given the missions needs, and sometimes the mission demands that we ignore our own preservation. But the Mission must be accomplished, the result desired must happen or die in the attempt."

    Unsaid was his need to do what drove him, a thought he kept buried in the deepest, most secure, part of his mind. But he knew it would come to light soon enough, once Lord Insipid remembered their past.

    Leda's eyes narrowed as she gave Bernael a sidelong stare. 'Just words'? She bit her lip to keep from blurting out the retort she had in mind, too exhausted to really dig into an argument. However, it did burn her to hear the teachings she had lived by since childhood, a way of life that had been honored each of her days since she had become Sith be referred to as simple words that held no true value.

    He was new here, maybe he just didn't get it yet, how this particular Empire operated... well, used to, she supposed. Shifting her weight anxiously, she considered... was she following an antiquated point of view now, after all that had happened? Things change, yes, but the Sith way had always been firmly grasped and unwavering. Was that still true? And had she changed so much that it didn't matter?

    An uncomfortable chill settled over her, causing her to cross her arms in over chest, seeking warmth. That was a dangerous line of thought and she shoved it away, clinging to the afterglow of combat for affirmation.

    Lord Insipid enjoyed the interplay. Manticore offered a question but not yet an answer. Leda and Bernael were differing poles, which was curious.

    Leda could be said to be a true believer, but Bernael, this Anzati who carried the weight of someone who knew Insipid well, he was a true pragmatist. A consequence, Insipid had long acknowledged, of a younger species versus an elder one.

    Curious. Yet, Insipid could not have been more pleased with the three of them. He also envied their almost immediate sense of cooperation and yet competition. It was very Sith. Interdependence was the cornerstone of the Empire, such as it was. A second time the regime had been undone, but this time, there was no Haretisch or Bellorum on the scene.

    There was just Insipid.

    The First Sith Order; the first one of this reality. All that remained was Skywalker.

    The galaxy was putty in the hands of the Sith and the Sith were his hands.

    Insipid knew it was time to speak. He detached from the wall, striding into the trio. He did not waste his time with niceties, and instead crooked a smile at Lord Manticore.

    “Darth Manticore, I would hear your answer, my old friend. You have discord between Bernael and Leda; what do you suggest?”

    He had a hand on his lightsaber hilt, because what else would the Sith Emperor do?

    Manticore bowed once he turned to face the Sith Emperor, out of true respect, and in part to check his inner surprise. He had not sensed Dark Lord Insipid, or any shift in the darkside whatsoever, despite his highly trained sensory skills -and it was at that moment that he understood why.

    "My Lord." Manticore rasped in greeting.

    "It should come as no surprise that Leda speaks my mind, practically word for word. It is The Code that personifies and realizes who we are as Sith. That Leda, whom I have not met until today, speaks as I would regarding The Code, is all the proof I need of its fundamental power. She understands it as I do. Bernael has gained my respect, hence I take no offense at his words. He is a being from another time, shaped by those experiences. The Mission has it's place. That he can be trusted to be a part of this team and do what is necessary, is all that concerns me at the moment."

    Smoothly, Manticore bowed once again to Lord Insipid before turning to his newfound teammates. Of course, he noticed the Emperor's posture, and in a way, he could understand it, especially after the earlier theatrics at the feast. Nothing of the sort would be tolerated in here, not under his watch.

    "You've both done well today, and I do not say this lightly. Unless our Emperor has any objections, you have my spoken approval as part of this team."

    To Bernael, he gave a solid and respectful nod. Manticore would know more about the Anzati, in due course. He offered the same to Leda, with the addition of a slight glint in his gaze, in recognition of her words.

    "For the First Sith Order."

    Insipid accepted the bow, and looked to the other two. “You have pleased me, one and all. Your prowess against each other and your true strength will add to the Empire we will restore. Today we have seeded the galaxy with our potential, as we progress to Kamino, Kuat and Hapes. But it us four that will secure the future.”

    The Sith Lord smiled at them all. “For the First Sith Order.”

    Star-struck rigid, Leda didn't move a muscle from the moment Insipid had revealed himself through to now, unsure of how to handle the praise she always sought now that she had received it. She had to suppose he had been watching the entire time, and her mind was working backwards to make certain she hadn't done or said anything disrespectful... ugh, stop. Old habit.

    All she trusted herself to do to show her appreciation was bow low towards her Emperor, gratitude in his faith in her flowing outward in the Force. She offered the same towards Manticore then, a smile crossing her lips as she came back up to face him. A soft nod at the end for Bernael and she permitted herself a wider grin - they were going to work well together, she could tell.

    Bernael was not surprised when Lord Insipid appeared, as if from nowhere, the one he’d known had been the same when he served that one. As the Emperor appeared he gave a bow of respect. And then he was not surprised when Lord Insipid laid on a loaded question to Lord Manticore, about Leda and himself. The hand on the saber kept him paying close attention, his senses on high alert.

    To all appearances he was calmly watching, waiting, while the question posed was answered. He knew his response was not in line with what others believed but, especially among beings of power, direct, truthful, answers were the best policy, even if it turned sour.

    His senses calmed at the response as well as the Emperor's, before it was made clear that the team truly would be, could be a team, to do as the Emperor had planned. And then both the Lord and his Master, ‘Yes must remember that’, the Emperor, gave the same response. ‘Hmmm, the First Sith Order, ok, good to know.’ he thought.

    Leda was more circumspect and he returned her slight nod of respect and acknowledgement. He looked to the two lords, nodding deeply to them both. Facing them both he joined in the call to arms, with one of his own, “For the Future,” thinking to himself, ‘For the Balance.’

    TAGS: @Sinrebirth, @greyjedi125, @QueenSabe7
     
  25. DarthIshyZ

    DarthIshyZ Chosen One star 7

    Registered:
    Jan 8, 2005
    IC: Serapis
    Approaching and boarding the shuttle

    Getting used to this metallic body was taking much longer than he had wanted. He was being dragged around like a child by this girl that was to be his apprentice. The fun never stopped.

    Fortunately the residual droid tech was enough to keep the body’s feet under him. And, actually it was quite agile, for a droid. These Commando Droids, albeit old, were known to be a bit acrobatic. They were also a very good shot. In the Clone Wars battles, the droids had proven themselves quite well when there were even odds. The Commando’s gave as good as they got. That is, until Anakin Skywalker had shut them all down.

    Finally Serapis was getting control of this thing. The wetware controls were interfacing nicely and he could actually sense things well. He snatched his hand out of hers. “Enough, Helinith. Four-legged model. Really.” He continued moving toward the shuttle on his own.

    They were approaching the shuttle that would take them to Hapes. Again the craft was older, but passable for their mission. The model was one that was known to have a good amount of space inside. He’d even known some that had Dejarik Tables in them for long trips.

    He must not have been paying attention when approaching the boarding ramp, he caught his foot on the lip of the ramp. He would have tumbled to the deck, but caught himself on the hydraulics that brought the ramp into place. If a droid could blush, this would be the time. “Roger, roger.” he said automatically. Where the heck did that come from?

    Walking up the ramp, more carefully this time, he said to anyone who would listen, ”For the record, the body I take, I don’t want it to be anyone who would be… missed. Someone unimportant. Let’s give whoever he is a life. I don’t like the idea of ejecting anyone from their body. However, I’ll do it if I have to.”

    Tags: @darthhelinith, @Sinrebirth