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Star Wars CLOSED The Road to Episode IX: Black Squadron

Discussion in 'Role Playing Forum' started by Sinrebirth , Sep 23, 2020.

  1. darthbernael

    darthbernael EU Community Mod, House was on fire, didn't do it star 4 Staff Member Moderator

    Apr 15, 2019
    OOC: Full post, alternate ending included posted per GM

    IC Jess, Tiber, Zara (combo with @A and @d )

    Zara looked to Squirt, "Give her droid directions to the front gate, I'm getting changed." She stood up and turned to Tiber. "You got something, if not I saw Park merch in there, would work in a pinch."

    Tiber glanced over at Zara, ”Yeah, ditching the flightsuits may be a good idea.” He dug through his bugout bag, finding his change of clothes at the very bottom. Looking back over at her, ”Changing here or where?” he asked, chuckling.

    "I'm in my tent, you can use the rest rooms! Then we move out! Jess will be on her way!" Zara said excitedly as she ran back to the thicket. It didn't take her long to put on her deep purple leggings and slip on her black jacket before tying the soft black scarf around her head, Zara had always hated her forehead. Growing up she'd been teased about not having hair so it made her feel better. Then just as quickly she packed up her tent, stashing it in her bag. Walking back she was dragging her now empty flightsuit. "No flares or code cylinders or ID in it, where should we ditch them?" She asked looking around but not seeing him.

    Tiber chuckled as Zara took off for her tent. He walked back into the building, finding the restroom inside. Quickly he shucked out of his flightsuit, rolling it as best he could and just managing to fit it into the bugout bag after getting his change of clothes out. He redressed, dark grey slacks and a black jacket over the white, form fitting t shirt he normally wore under his flightsuit. His boots were still good to wear so he kept them on.

    He slipped the strap of the bag over his shoulder and exited the bathroom. As he walked back through the building he passed one of the windows. His pace faltered as he saw Zara outside. Her outfit suited her well. He was glad his first notice of her in it was not right in front of her as he didn’t want to ogle her. ’Gods, she’s beautiful.’ he thought before pacing forward once more.

    When he stepped out, he saw that she still had her flightsuit in her hands, realizing it was a good idea to dispose of them. Walking up to her, he smiled, ”I like the scarf, Z.” He looked around, wondering where they could get rid of the suits. ”Wonder if there’s an incinerator around here.”

    She reached up and touched the silken scarf. "Thanks, gift from mum." She looked around. "There is a dumpster behind, its shut but we can open it." Zara wanted to get out of there. "By the time they find them, we'll be long gone." Once there she lifted the lid and tossed her suit in only to be shoved from behind again. "Oh cripes, give me a break!" The bantha had become her shadow. Rolling her eyes she indicated to Tiber to toss his in before turning to face the beast. "What is it with you?"

    Tiber followed her, doing his best to keep his eyes firmly up and glazing around and not on the fact that the leggings were very nice on Zara. They reached the dumpster and he moved alongside her as she opened it and tossed her flightsuit inside. He opened his bag, pulling his out, making sure there wasn’t anything in or on it that would identify them in any way before his joined hers inside the dumpster.

    He’d just begun to turn when the bantha bumped her again. He tried his best not to chuckle but the cough that came made it obvious. ”You’ve definitely made a friend there, Z. I think they’re going to be upset when we get out of here.”

    "I don't care, he's staying. Come on, Jess will be here soon." She turned and began walking.

    They'd covered the distance in a short time and reached the gates. "We should open them, didn't Bones say there is an airfield on this place, its in here, so we need to let her in, yeah?" She turned to question him just as she heard an approaching speeder.

    * * *​

    Jess Pava


    Jess had settled her debt at the hotel, grabbed a breakfast on the go, then gone straight for the speeder with Rolo. She was impatient to see the others.

    It seemed like a dream and she was afraid she would wake up at any moment to find it was a cruel trick.

    It was hard to stay within the speed limits through the city, but she had to be disciplined. To be stopped by local law enforcement now and then captured by the First Order, just for the sake of a few more minutes travel time, would have been a terrible folly.

    But once she left the city limits, she let it out full throttle. She was a starfighter pilot. She could handle speed.

    Rolo beeped her when directions were needed, but that trusty mind for details had already memorised the route and finally Jess made it.

    She saw them both beside the open gate into the old park. She slowed to a halt and leapt out of the speeder. She ran towards them.

    She stopped at five paces. Tiber looked hurt, and Zara... it did not seem right to throw herself into her arms.

    She breathed in and out a few times, unable to orate her emotions, shifting her weight from one foot to the other.

    She bit her lip in a characteristic mannerism. Then with perhaps a hint of a sob, she said, "It's so good to see you again."


    Zara backed slightly allowing Tiber to hug Jess before she attempted to do the same. "I'm so happy you're ok Jess." She hugged the girl briefly, not being one for public displays.


    After exchanging hugs with both Tiber and Zara, Jess backed up. That had been so good... like the physical contact had verified their reality, convinced her it was not some cruel dream.

    "I..." she opened her mouth and paused. There was so much to say. It was impossible to know where to start.

    Rolo rescued her, beeping and bumping into her - as was his habit when he needed her attention.

    Jess winced apologetically at Tiber and Zara. Then focused on the droid's warbles. Only a few electronic sequences were even audibly recognisable to humans, but she had a bit of a sixth-sense with Rolo. She picked out a sound.

    "A ship? Here?" she looked up at the other pilots as Rolo zoomed off across the park.

    The astromech led them to a shed and with Bones and Squirt they soon had the door open. Jess peered inside.

    "Oh, a Starwind," she said, eyes lighting up. "They use these as pleasure cruisers!" .

    She did a quick external survey. It looked okay but not used for a long time.

    "I'm going to the bridge, check the connections, see if she fires up. You want to check the fuel and power batteries?"

    She had not brought up the subject of that ominous broadcast. She just could not face that right now. She needed something practical to get on with...

    And escape was currently their number one priority.

    Zara and Tiber

    Jess was taking the lead, and for the time being Zara was fine with it as she was still exhausted and emotionally confused. She'd closed the gates as they left knowing this area might have other creatures who may get loose and the last thing she wanted to do is let them get hurt. She followed, as Jess' droid led them to a shed and the young woman declared a ship inside. She'd not noticed, the bantha had followed and currently stood behind her, Zara sighed loudly, "a yacht? Well I guess beggars can't be choosers." She looked to Jess who was already heading up the ramp then turned to Tiber who was in front of her. "Hope it flies." she said quietly. 'Her' bantha grumbled and she turned to face it. "What? No one asked you to come here, you can go back to herd, or whatever the kriff your lot travel in." She said putting her hands on her hips. The Bantha lifted it's head and without warning head butted her backward, into Tiber. "NO!!!" she cried as she fell backward.

    Tiber stepped closer, catching Zara as she fell backward. His arms went around her, holding her. ”I’ve got you, Zara, you’re not falling.” he said softly. He held her, breathing in her scent, trying not to sigh in happiness to have her where she was, the memory of the previous time still niggling his memory.

    He held her until she was ready to stand on her own again, ”It looks flightworthy,” He looked over at Jess, a sudden blush crossing his face as he realized he still held Zara and how Jess could possibly see it, ”uhhh, Jess could you be sure of that?” he asked lamely. But he couldn’t, wouldn’t release his grasp until Zara brushed him off, once more.

    Zara felt her skin prickled and tingled as his arms embraced her. 'No' she thought, 'this is not what he wants, or is it?' She stood and pulled away awkwardly. "I'll check the engine." She muttered as she turned to glare at the bantha. "And you..........go away! Go back to your friends!" Turning sharply she strode up the empty ramp and headed to the engines.

    The bantha watched as the creatures moved on to the ship and a sense of excitement washed over the beast as it realised it was going somewhere. The small creatures weren't looking so the bantha trotted to the back ramp, it had done this before, its how it got here. Maybe, just maybe if it got on it could go home again? So quietly it trotted up the rear ramp.


    Jess busied herself in the dusty cockpit, flicking switches to primary systems, toggling control modes, checking seal integrity reports on the computer screens.

    Some systems needed more encouragement than others. She hit the internal comlink.

    "She's a bit low on systems' juice, we will probably have to recharge for a while before we take her into vacuum. But the hull seems intact and spaceworthy. How are you guys doing?"

    She looked out of the cockpit into the surrounding shed; if there were any power blocks or spare fuel cells.

    Engine Bay

    A voice came through the internal comm and Zara glanced around to find it, moments later she found it on a nearby bulk head and pushed the button to respond. "Just looking over the engines, there's nothing obviously burnt out, its greasy but won't know more till you fire her up."

    As Jess and Zara took off, in opposite directions, Tiber chuckled, feeling the shift of the landing struts of the ship as the bantha rumbled onboard. The fact it did made him think for a moment and Jess’s comm call added to the thought.

    He stepped out of the freighter, heading for a door marked for the crew. When he got inside he found rows of lockers. Calling Bones over the droid opened them for him and he went through them, until he found several Preserve flightsuits, in different sizes, hoping he had at least one that would fit both the other two as well.

    As he left the room he walked through the hangar, the suits over his shoulder, until he found a Ground Power Unit and the cable that came from it. He looked up at the cockpit, to get Jess’s attention and then lifted the cable and headed to the ship. It took a few moments to find the external power jack but he finally got the cable plugged in and returned to the GPU and turned it on.

    Satisfied that the ship was getting juice he started back toward the hatch, his mind running over a few moments before again. He whistled to get Bones onboard as he stepped up the ramp, distracted by thoughts of Zara.

    "Squirt?" Zara called out, she'd been checking the engines when she'd seen something. "Let Jess know to hold off on starting her up, I've found something loose." Getting down onto her hands and knees she was able to see a power coupling that was, well, misaligned. Flipping to her back she pulled herself under the engine and began to fiddle with the large coupling feeling it would inhibit the ships ability to even start. She'd have to lift it somehow to get it back into it's cradle.

    The lowing of the bantha, trying to fit through the corridor toward where Zara must be, reminded Tiber they needed to get it settled somehow. He saw one of the cradles used to hold large beasts in the hold. Walking up and down the cargo area, he looked for the center of gravity marker. Finding it, he moved the cradle so it’s midpoint was on the COG line. So now to get the bantha in it.

    He saw Zara’s bag and grabbed it. Moving before the beast, he swung the bag before it’s nose. Once he had it’s attention, he got it to follow the bag to the cradle. Once it was in it, he closed the gate behind it, locking it in place. He hung Zara’s bag just out of the beast’s reach, before it’s nose, to hopefully mollify it some. Looking at the panel of the cradle he went to the comms panel, ”Jess, when you make your flight calculations, include a 5000kg mass placed over the center of gravity. Just a heads up. And let me know when the power cells are full and I’ll unlatch us from the GPU."

    He triggered the comm again, ”Oh, and I have Preserve marked flightsuits for all three of us to help if we get commed by departure control.” he added before slumping into a jumpseat for a moment, letting his eyes close as he relaxed for just a couple moments.

    She pulled it hard to the side, it was jammed hard beside it's cradle and she didn't have the strength to lift it. It could not connect properly if not in its cradle and she figured this was why the ship had been grounded. It was something that could easily be missed or overlooked and the best way to silently ground a ship. Another pull and she only got a slight move out of it, it was jammed hard. "Can one of you give me a hand, this thing is stuck fast!" She called out as loudly as she could. Squirt began to ask if she was ok. "I'm fine, you can't help me here, you're just not flexible enough to get down here!"

    His eyes flew open as he heard Zara yell from the engine room, that couldn’t be good. He flew through the freighter’s corridor, skidding to a halt. She was laying under an engine part, stretched out. He took a moment admiring her before he squatted down, seeing her up under the engine. He could see what she was wrestling with so he slid under the engine too, beside her. Bracing himself he began pushing up, trying to help her free the coupling. ”I’ve got the weight, Z, get it free and in place.”

    His shoulder was hard up against hers and she closed her eyes for a brief moment to focus. "I just need to work it....." She pushed hard and moments later a satisfying 'thud' as it fell back into place. "There!. Give me a tick while I reconnect it." She glanced sideways at him as she spoke, unaware of her own subconscious reaction. Or more so that of her lekku, a part of her body she'd never really learned to control. The one closest to him had now curled itself around his arm and she'd not noticed as she reconnected the power coupling.

    He smiled softly as her lekku curled around his arm, he could feel the warmth, the smooth flow of her muscle as it pressed against him. As she moved he could feel his grip slipping. ”Hold on, I need to shift for a sec..” he told her as the coupling was moving. Trying not to dislodge the lekku, or let her notice it had moved, he shifted, flipped over, and lifted some with his legs. There still wasn’t enough leverage until he moved closer, until his leg went over hers, knees to the floor. His face was inches from hers, as he pressed to the floor with his hands and knees, straining to keep it up as she slid the coupling into place.

    Zara's eyes widened, 'what was he doing?' her mind screamed. "Its in..." She breathed, her fingers working frantically to the side to reconnect it. "You......can........" At that moment she lost her ability to speak as she turned her head to concentrate on her work.


    Tiber hooking up the power line had lit up the console with half a dozen red fault lights.

    "Power couplings!" sighed Jess. "My favourite..."

    She was soon in the cramped service tubes, crawling about amongst the wires and components.

    The first two turned out to be easy; just re-priming flipped fuse switches.

    The next two were slightly more tricky - the fuses were eroded and needed replacing. She huffed back and forth with spares from the locker.

    The last was a genuine fault that would ground the ship. The power coupling was knocked out of its cradle and warped. She had to lie on her back in the tunnel, brace her feet against the top and put all her weight into lifting then levering it back into position. She had learned a knack using a hydrospanner as an impromptu lever in just the right spot...

    It took all of her strength and several efforts but it finally got done. That was five out of six, and she knew the last light was showing engine room where the Twi'lek had signaled a problem.

    She crawled back and returned, tired and sweaty, to the cockpit.

    The last light winked out. Rolo also tootled happily nearby, reaching the end of the hyperdrive computer self-diagnostic cycle.

    Jess pressed the internal comlink. "Way to go, you two. We're at full power and ready to lift off!"

    She frowned at the weight distribution report. "Err, are we getting into livestock export as well here?"

    Then a moment of inspiration. Actually, that's not a bad cover story!

    Engine Bay

    He looked down at her, she had grease spots on her face, one on the tip of her nose, but seeing her there, so close, he couldn't deny how wonderful it was, but he couldn't tell her, she'd just pull away again. He strained, trying to keep the weight up still, as much to maintain at least a tiny separation so she didn't think he was just trying to lay on her. "Z, ummm, uhh I'm, I don't want it to fall on you." He knew the reasoning was lame but it was all he could think of for the moment.

    "So don't" she said clenching her teeth as she completed the connection. "It's all done." She turned back withdrawing her hands to her shoulders and swallowing hard as she gazed up at him. Part of her wanted to allow him to collapse, to be closer, to touch her. There was that part, but she was terrified, never had she ever felt like this, never had anyone had such an affect on her, make her angry, laugh, worry about and right now, desire. How did she deal with this? Was this just physical? She didn't know, and if it was she didn't want to fall into that trap. "Umm.....we're done here." Her voice was soft and weak.

    He looked in her eyes, could see something, but the way her face was emoting it was a range of emotions. Somehow he had to get her to know how he felt but he didn't know how, he'd hoped she'd begun to understand when they'd fought some, when she'd made the Twi'lek jab and he'd responded but he didn't know. And then he realized he was just crouched there, looking into her eyes, not saying anything. "I'll hold it up, you slide out under me." he said, almost a whisper.

    "I'm already under you......" Her voice quivered as she turned her head to look at where she could get out. It was then her lekku pulled, it was caught on something but it didn't hurt, wrapped maybe she looked toward it and saw the end gently curled around his arm and the tip gently patting. "Oh....."I'm sorry!" She began to move her head to get it off, it wasn't working. He was right, she needed to squirm down now and without thinking she began to do so only to be stopped. Her head scarf was caught on his jacket somehow.

    She moved, a few inches and then stopped. He could feel her trying to do so but then noticed her scarf caught on his jacket. "Don't move Z, don't want you tearing that scarf." he said, remembering the deep value it held to her. He glanced around and then made up his mind. Lifting his shoulders slightly against the load, he slid one arm under her, leaving the other with her lekku still wrapped around where it was. He pulled her close, against him and it would have been the movement of millimeters to kiss her. He started shifting backward, his arm around her helping her slide with him. And then they were out from under the engine and it settled back from the small movement he'd put on it. But he didn't let go yet, held her against him. "Zara...I...I" he started but was worried how she'd respond if he finished the sentence.

    Zara gave her head a shake, successfully freeing her scarf. She could feel his warmth against her body, almost hear his heartbeat as he exerted himself to get them out. Once out she gently retrieved her wayward lekku and she expected him to let go, but he didn't release her, not right away, she pushed herself up to his face as he spoke. "You what?" She asked, before pushing back. "No, it doesn't matter, we haven't go time for ........this........whatever this is." She could feel her cheeks warming, and it took a lot to for that to happen. Standing she turned away so he'd not see, this was just a physical reaction she told herself. This wasn't serious, it was just circumstances and right now they both felt a little vulnerable, yeah that was it. She turned back. "Let's get off this rock."

    He felt her against him and it felt good. He hoped she didn’t feel his heart beating so quickly. And then she spoke and he truly hoped she didn’t feel his heart skip a beat, lose it’s pace for a moment. The shine to his eyes dulled and he attempted to regain his composure in the moment she turned away. His arm dropped from around her back when she did and he hoped his voice didn’t sound too dull in his response, ”Yeah, let’s get back, soonest.”

    He stepped back, turned to head back to the cargo area to grab the one flightsuit he’d grabbed that would fit him. As he walked through the hatch he looked back at her, then turned back, and walked back down the corridor.

    Just for fun, as 'the set up' was missed and that's FINE as this is RPG and we all have different ideas! ;) and we (@darthbernael and I ) thought we'd have a bit of fun with our characters. :p

    She could feel his warmth against her body, almost hear his heartbeat as he exerted himself to get them out. Once out her scarf freed itself but he didn't release her, not right away, she pushed herself up to his face as he spoke. "You what?" She breathed.

    He could almost hear Bones calling him an idiot again for not telling her. That was one thing he did recall from the crash, when he got out. And when Bones had done so again when he was sitting against the wall of the building. But if he didn’t, he may never get the chance again. "Zara, I'm scared to tell you, scared you won't feel the same. But I know, can feel it to my core, that I'm falling deeply for you. You're stubborn, hardheaded, quick to push away when something scares you. But you're also kind, caring, intelligent, beautiful inside and out, and one hell of a pilot."

    He said it all in almost a rush, wanting to get it out before she pushed him away again. And he feared she would do just that. But he waited, not even realising he was holding his breath, to see what she said or did.

    Zara listened to his words, they could be just words, or they could be the truth. His eyes told her he was sincere and that he meant every one of them, but how did she feel about it? At this exact moment, she knew what she felt, but would she feel that tomorrow, would she regret her decision? She couldn't know. Her eyes looked down to her rogue lekku, it was still entwined around his arm, the one unconscious expression of her emotions, the one dead giveaway to her thoughts was doing just that, giving her away. His warmth was spreading over her and his natural scent working its way into her soul, she was struggling to remember her reasons why no was even an option as at this moment in time, it wasn't. She looked back to lock eyes with his, before reaching up and cupping him cheek, caressing her thumb over it. "Long term, I don't know....." She breathed, “But right now." She didn't hesitate as she pressed her slightly parted lips to his, drinking in the sensation.

    He let out that breath he'd been holding as she spoke. She felt the same...and she was right that long term could sort itself. And then thought fled as her lips pressed to his. She tasted sweet, soft, warm. He held her closely, feeling the rise and fall of her chest against his, her heartbeat. His eyes drank in hers as they met again.

    She pulled back slightly, feeling her heart rate increasing quickly, her lips tingled and she wanted more. Closing her eyes, she kissed him again, but this time allowing more of her own desire flow through, her own need and wants revealing themselves as she allowed her lips and mouth to explore his. Her hand slipped down to his neck and under the collar of his jacket, the other moved to encircle his waist.

    His arm around her back tightened, pressing her to him as she kissed him again, this time the kiss was somehow deeper, more passionate as they both let their emotions flow. The hand of the arm with the lekku wrapped around it stroked the well-muscled upper end of the lekku, hoping it felt good to her. Love, desire, care for her shined in his eyes as they looked in hers.

    This wasn't the time or the place for this, her desire was strong but common sense was screaming at her. Jess was nearby and she did not want them to be caught in a compromising position. Her hand slipped to his chest as she pulled away, her eyes still closed. "We can’t…" She whispered, "Not here...Jess..." She kissed him again, "is still here..." Another kiss, “And it’s not ....." Another deeper kiss, "right."

    He took a deep breath, trying to hide the lurch his heart took when she said it wasn't right. But kissed her just as fervently. "You're going to have to explain the last. But no, we need to remember she's here." Kissing her again. "But when we are alone, we will hold each other and talk" kissing her again, "more about how we feel." he finished speaking and just kissed her.

    "Mmmmhmmm" She grunted through her almost feverish kisses, logic wasn't sinking in, she knew what was wrong and right but her body wasn't listening at this point.

    His mind was just, just barely, still running as they kissed. With the latest breath he pulled back slightly. Looking in her eyes, "Zara, I so much want to keep this going. But, let me get us home, get us safe, and we can kiss all night. I promise you I want that more than anything, you in my arms, holding you, kissing you, but I want you safe first." He said quietly, sadness in his voice evident at having to stop. But he would move mountains to make sure she was safe, whether she knew that now or not.

    She dropped her head to look down, softly panting she gave a quick nod. "You're right." She conceded. As her desire began to cool and logic returned, she began to ask the questions again, was this just physical, at least on her part. Something told her he was serious and that immediately worried her, was she playing with his heart? She removed her hand from his chest and proceeded to unwind her lekku as her other hand withdrew from his waist. "Another time maybe."

    "Maybe?" He asked, a whisper. His eyes shaded and he stepped back. "Maybe...I see." He shook his head, glanced at her, then stepped forward, "I sincerely hope that's it's more than maybe, Z." He said, kissing the tip of her nose, sighed, a note of sadness in it, then turned to head back to the cargo bay.

    She felt drained, emotionally and physically, like she'd been on a rollercoaster ride of some kind. The sort of ride you never had control of and one you never knew what was around the corner. She sighed before stepping forward to lean against the bulk head then turning and covering her face with her hands. What was she getting into? What was happening to her? She reached over and pulled her lekku forward and looked down at the rogue one. "And you.......where do you get off betraying me like that?"

    TAGS: @Sinrebirth, @Adalia-Durron, @Kurisan
    Last edited: Apr 25, 2021
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  2. Sinrebirth

    Sinrebirth Mod-Emperor of the EUC, Lit, RPF and SWC star 9 Staff Member Manager

    Nov 15, 2004
    IC: Jess
    Kuat City

    The Bantha couldn’t be dissuaded, and was settled aboard. Jess found it’s dedication to Tiber and Zara endearing. As she brushed it absently, she whispered to it. “Black Six, standing by.”

    Poe would love that.

    If she made it back to the Resistance, that is. With how the astromechs were updating them, the base on Ajan Kloss might be abandoned or long gone by the time they escaped here - if they did.

    Kuat Control seemed busy, so the freighter received a cursory scan, accepted the explanation that they were transporting a Bantha to a new zoo, and then issued the decidedly amusing warning. “We have suspected Resistance pilots in Kuat City,” the woman said. “They are to be considered extremely dangerous and to be avoided at all costs. Report anything suspicious immediately on sight.”

    She called out. “We’re famous guys!”

    That meant they could, in theory, head into orbit and even towards the Megador-class warship in orbit. With a Bantha aboard. Desperate times and all...

    ... but there was an increasing amount of activity around that dreadnought... shuttles, freighters, TIE transports...

    They had an authorised window of departure that was two hours from now...

    TAG: @darthbernael, @Adalia-Durron
    IC: Admiral Vonn

    Kuat Control, in orbit

    Perhaps if Admiral Vonn had been in the room at the time that a zoo transport near the crash site of two X-wings had contacted them, he might have enquired more.

    But as it was, he was standing at attention as a command shuttle arrived. Vonn frowned as General Hux stepped down the ramp. Vonn was sure he’d read - and relished - a report that the ginger tyrant was dead, executed for treason in full-view of the bridge of the Steadfast.

    Vonn sketched a salute. “General.”

    “Admiral,” Hux replied, but without a salute. A pair of Stormtroopers followed behind him. Vonn managed to keep his annoyance out of his face.

    “I had heard you’d been shot in the Kijimi engagement,” Vonn managed. “I am glad to see that you are well.”

    Hux indicated the battle-dressing on his leg. “That FN traitor did shoot me, but I of course survived.”

    Of course. Sudden dread seized him. “The Knights of Ren were here in respect of the Eclipse -“

    “Yes, yes,” Hux said. “Ancient history. I’ve reviewed the reports and you were ill-equipped to deal with such an incursion.”

    Relief and disdain warred with Vonn. Ill-equipped materially or ill-equipped in terms of his skill? Before he could decide, Hux pressed on. “Had the Knights of Ren been here earlier, then you would never have had the issues you did. They should be deployed to patrol our key shipyard, not chasing down the scavenger girl.”

    Vonn could at very least agree on that point, but he daren’t disparage Kylo Ren openly. But then... “We did hear that the Supreme Leader was indisposed -“

    “Deposed, you mean,” Hux said, sharply. “Palpatine has seized control and Pryde let him. They’re setting a trap at Exegol, with the so-called Sith Fleet as bait.”

    “One of those ships destroyed Kijimi, did it not?” Vonn opined. Hearing Hux be critical of a suoerweapon was typical Hux-Hypocrisy; the toady had championed Starkiller Base as his solution to military superiority.

    “It did,” Hux said drily, “but that does not change the necessity of the Capitol.”

    Ah. Of course.

    “General, I appreciate that the Capitol is essential to your proposals, but Supreme Leader Snoke created the Capitol to be a mobile flagship and shipyard, to prevent us from being tied to cartographical issues. The new jammer is interesting technology but the power considerations would require us to essentially tethering it to a City-world -“ He already knew this was a waste of words but he wanted to place his ill-equipped military opinion on the official record.

    Hux grinned. “Which is why we shall deploying the Capitol to Coruscant. Thereafter we shall cut the galaxy’s ability to communicate apart, and seize complete control.”

    I thought we already ruled the galaxy.

    Vonn wasn’t an idiot. Hux and Pryde had always been at each other’s throats, seeking the ‘second most powerful’ position beneath Kylo Ren... and presumably Kylo Ren was playing off the scavenger girl against the resurrected Palpatine, who seemed just as interested in her as the former(?) Supreme Leader.

    So if Hux used the Capitol to cut off Palpatine... Vonn twitched, and eyed the Stormtroopers. Loyal personally to Hux, no doubt. Which meant the Admiral would have to play this very carefully.

    “Allow me to personally escort you to the Capitol.”

    TAG: No One
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  3. Adalia-Durron

    Adalia-Durron WNU Mod - Always Watching..... star 10 Staff Member Manager

    Jun 3, 2003
    Zara stood in the doorway of the cargo hold, she wanted her chocolate covered namana bar, she knew it would help her feel better. The problem was it was in her bag which was currently hanging in front of the passenger. She pursed her lips, he’d done this on purpose, he must have, why else would her gear be hanging so close to that beast? She drew a slow deep breath before stepping into the room. “Ok, you and I are going to talk….or I’m going to talk and you’re going to listen. We clear?”

    The large beast had been watching her with it’s large brown eyes, and grunted when she’d finished.

    “Now don’t take that attitude with me!” Zara put her hands on her hips. “I just want my bag back, so if you would just back up a bit…” She was trying to be intimidating, but failing.

    Somehow the bantha knew what she wanted and lifting it’s head it wrapped it long lips around the bags strap, removing it from the hook it was on and stepping back.

    Zara’s eyes widened “Oh no you didn’t.” She couldn’t believe it’d just done that. “Drop it now!” She ordered.

    It shook its large head, grunting as it did so.

    “I SAID DROP IT!!” Zara raised her voice.

    Another head shake and a grunt that sounded more like laughter.

    Zara was frustrated, tired and hungry as her hand moved to her blaster and slowly she pulled it out an aimed, careful to keep her finger off the trigger. “I said drop it.” She ground out.

    The bantha turned to her, its eyes suddenly looked sad as it lowered its head and dropped the bag. Keeping its head down and making almost whimpering sounds.

    Guilt, she’d just threatened a harmless animal with a weapon when it was trying to play. “Oh, I’m sorry, I didn’t mean! I’d never really shoot you…I just wanted my……..” She stopped as she put the weapon away. “Why am I explaining myself to a batha?” She turned away and ran her hand over her forehead before turning back. “Look, I am sorry I upset you, I just want my bag back.”

    Lifting it’s large head it let out a sad moan before bending down to push the bag toward with it’s long thick tongue.

    “Ewwe, gross.” She muttered as she watched the bantha step back and look at her hopefully. “Oh….stop looking at me like that.” She bent down leaned forward, reaching toward the slimy bag, hooking her fingers into it before dragging it across the deck. It left a slimy trail behind it and she duly screwed up her nose. “My chocolate better be ok.”

    The bantha let out a sound that almost sounded like a question.

    Picking at the zipper to avoid the slime she looked up. “What?” She asked before opening the bag being grateful it was dry inside; it really was waterproof. “Well, I can’t be angry, my gears dry.” She looked back to find big sad eyes looking at her. “Oh, stop it, I didn’t shoot you!”

    A soft sound came from behind her. Tiber had come back to the cargo hold to check on the bantha before attempting to rest and found Zara already in there, talking to it. He didn't want to distract her as he remembered earlier and the fear she'd shown when it approached. Instead, he leaned against the doorway. Possibly too hard because it just shifted slightly.

    Spinning at the creak sound she looked up. “How long have you been there?”

    "Long enough, but I didn't want to spoil the moment." He replied as he straightened.

    “There’s no moment to be spoiled.” She looked back to her bag and began to dig about for the reason she was here. “I just wanted my namana bar, I’m feeling………” she stopped. He didn’t need to know she was feeling a little homesick, she wanted to talk to her mother and knew that couldn’t happen so she hoped the taste of the bar would help.

    He sighed. The pause told him enough. He didn't know why she needed it but it was important to her. Walking over, he dropped to his knees. "Here..." He took the bag and reached in, arm rescuing toward the bottom of the bag, finding the bar she was searching for, he was sure. Pulling it out, "This what you were wanting?" he asked even as the bantha scooted him across the floor slightly.

    She sat back while he dug and produced her bar, reaching forward she gently took it, "yeah, that's it, thank you." She hugged it close to her as the bantha began to push him. "Yeah, you push him around."

    Tiber went to stand and had to turn it into a diving roll because the bantha nudged him hard again and almost caused him to tackle Zara. Instead, his movement made him go over her head and roll across the deck for a moment. The bantha grumped because it hasn't pushed her into him and moved closer to her.

    Zara ducked. “What are you doing?!? Are you crazy?”

    "Your pet doesn't like us not in each other’s arms, it seems. It tried to push me into you, hard." He said as he got his breath back

    "Not you!" She turned to the bantha, "Him! Her! Whatever the hell it is."

    It looked at her with its big eyes, seeming to nod toward Tiber, taking a step closer. Tiber got up, walking back and sitting beside her. "I don't know but it seems to have that on it's mind."

    “Well, it can keep its mind to itself. I am tired, hungry and so not in the mood for it’s games.” She said staring down the beast. “Now is not the time or the place for ……for……well you know.” She started doing up her bag again.

    "Stop it!" Zara snapped glancing at Tiber on his back, again before standing up and putting one hand on her hip, raising her finger to the bantha. "I said no!"

    Big brown eyes stared as it stepped backward.

    "Bad bantha! No more pushing..." Zara ordered.

    Making a sad sound it looked to be sulking and began to move forward again.

    "I SAID NO!! NOW SIT!!!" To her shock, the creature lowered its back legs and literally sat down. "Ok, that worked." She muttered.

    Tiber chuckled. Watching her work with the Bantha was a new side of her he was learning. "It makes you nervous but you do know what you're doing." he said, quietly.

    She straightened and folded her arms. "Just like my dog at home, he needed a firm hand too."

    "Makes sense, Lexrul is more industrialized, I'm guessing, than where you're from, less pets or space." He murmured. Sitting up, he checked to make sure the bantha was still sitting in place before he moved further.

    She glanced back at him and smiled. “We have a plantation, masses of space.”

    "Nice. My family have a large living space, but it's more along the lines of own most of one of the corporate towers as a home and business headquarters." He replied.

    Zara frowned. “Sounds……….cold?” She eyed the bantha as it started to stand. “I SAID SIT!!” She bent and picked up her bag, before looking to him. “I think we should leave it to be, before I lose control here.”

    He saw the bantha moving and chuckled, "Yes, we should get out of here before then or one of us is getting pushed again." Standing, he nodded, "Because of the business they were tied to the spaceport so it wasn't that we could find some of the little rural areas that Lexrul has."

    She nodded as she exited the room. “Might see it one day, right now I need some sleep and to eat this.” She held up the fruit bar. “There’s a few things on my mind I need to think about.” She wasn't about to tell him he was what she needed to think about.

    He walked alongside as they entered the corridor but heard the dismissal in her voice. "Get some rest then, Z, and I'll see you in the morning."

    She snorted. "We're in space, there is no morning, or night, or anything really."

    "Smartass, ships clock time. Whatever it's set to wake us on time." He replied, chuckling.

    Opening a door to one of the bedroom suites, Zara stopped in the door way for a moment before tearing open the chocolaty fruit bar and breaking it in half. Holding it out she offered it. "Here, a taste of my home"

    He took the piece, a small shiver running through him as their fingers touched, ”Thank you, Zara, I’ll try it. Now get some rest and I’ll see you soon.”

    At that moment Jess called out from the cockpit.

    “We’re famous guys!”

    Zara smirked. "She must be listening to local security transmissions." Part of Zara did not want to leave him, but she was letting logic win. "You get some rest too." she said quietly.

    TAG @Sinrebirth
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  4. Adalia-Durron

    Adalia-Durron WNU Mod - Always Watching..... star 10 Staff Member Manager

    Jun 3, 2003
    IC Zara Christa
    Bed Chamber

    Waking up fast and in surprise was never a good thing, and this was the first time it'd ever happened to Zara. Sitting up she was bathed in a sheen of perspirations, her heart rate way above normal and her breathing almost laboured. Clutching at her chest she stared wide eyed into the darkness around her as she attempted to get her bearings on her location and situation. It only took a few seconds as she lowered herself back to the bed, her eyes staring blankly. This was a dream of sorts she'd never had before, one detailed, vivid and way more sensual than she'd ever imagined possible. Curling into a fetal position she pulled her wildly twitching lekku over her should and hugged the pillow to her body. Her mother has visions, always has due to her connection to the Force, but Zara had no such connection and that meant what she'd just 'witnessed' and felt was all hers. The last thing she'd been looking for was a relationship, she just wanted to do her duty, to stop the First Order destroying her galaxy. How could she do that with her own mind, body and soul betraying her like this, first her lekku earlier and now her mind. What was next?

    Slipping off the bed in the dark, she stumbled her way to the small refresher and fumbled to find the tap, turning it on. She splashed the cold water on her face before running her cold wet hands over each lekku, essentially cooling them before covering her face. "Get it together Zara." She muttered before drawing a deep calming breath. Was it because it's been so long since she'd had anyone in her life that made her react like she had. Maybe, just maybe, it was the breaking of the drought? Yeah, that had to be it.

    It was time to sort it out.

    @TAG @darthbernael
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  5. darthbernael

    darthbernael EU Community Mod, House was on fire, didn't do it star 4 Staff Member Moderator

    Apr 15, 2019
    IC Tiber
    Onboard the Freighter

    Tiber yawned as the freighter hung in orbit. After he'd left Zara so she could rest he'd grabbed a couple hours sleep too before he relieved Jess at the controls so she could sleep. He'd managed to insert them into the outbound queue for departure while the women slept. But the First Order ships hung over their heads still.

    Many things were going through his mind and he wished he had cleared comms so that he could reach out to his uncle but that would have to wait. If he transmitted to Feral right now the FO would not only have them but potentially a lock on wherever his uncle was now. And that wouldn’t do, at all.

    He double checked their trajectory and they were on the correct outbound course. Traffic Control had called a couple times to ensure they were what they were supposed to be. He’d found, in the computers, the flight manifest forms. He’d fudged a flight, getting it cleared, somehow, for a transfer to Tatooine, with the reason being that the Preserve veterinarian was unable to diagnose a Bantha. So, as long as that held up, they should be able to get past the ships in orbit and escape.

    Sitting back his eyes half lidded he let his mind wander.

    Suddenly he sat bolt upright, looking at the display and realizing that about twenty minutes had passed, he’d fallen asleep. And what had woken him was the sensation of a lekku winding around his arm. It felt so real that he looked down just to be sure that he had been dreaming. ”Of course…” he muttered. If he hadn’t taken the controls he’d have gone and knocked at Zara’s door, but that too may be a step too much.

    His mind wandered again and he winced slightly, had he truly told her what he had. No wonder she had backed off. Shaking his head he tried not to ponder anything deeper anymore. He had told her and now he could do nothing, except wait and see if she wanted to talk.

    And then he sat up straighter in the command chair as a flight of TIEs passed by. He knew that they couldn’t really tell who he was if they looked in the viewscreen but just that they were there meant that the FO was screening ships closely. And he hoped his fake flightplan would continue to hold up or they were going to have an interesting departure.

    Swiveling in the seat he looked at Bones, ”Head back to the engine room, see if you can tweak the engines so we can get more speed.”

    TAGS: @Sinrebirth, @Adalia-Durron
  6. Adalia-Durron

    Adalia-Durron WNU Mod - Always Watching..... star 10 Staff Member Manager

    Jun 3, 2003
    IC Zara Christa
    Heading for Trouble........with a capital T

    Striding down the corridor unsure as to her destination she almost tripped over his droid Bones. "Yikes! Where are you heading?" The droids head began to swivel as it responded too her with with series of beeps and whistles. She held her hands up. "Whoa whoa, forget I asked, I don't understand you mostly!" She glanced in the direction it'd come from, "is he that way?" Zara asked, hoping the answer would be simple enough to understand. A distinctive blurting sound came from the droid to which she put her hands on her hips and raised an eyebrow. "That I understood, loose the attitude, I may not speak your language totally, but I can pull you apart!" She could have sworn it was now grumbling. Sighing she shook her head, "so? Where is he?" Bones spun its dome toward the cockpit and the sound he emitted was a distinctive 'that way', or it was at least to her. "Thank you, we can get on you know." Slipping past the black domed droid she was only a two meters away when she heard a second blurt, she didn't turn. "I heard that!" She called out with a smirk, despite the droids annoyance at her, and she knew she bugged it, she liked it.

    Stopping short of the cockpit Zara stopped, what was she going to say to him? He'd told her how he felt, he'd told her the truth about himself, what was she going to say to that? She thought for a moment back to her initial feelings, she needed to test that. Slowly she drew a deep breath and let it out just as slowly before entering the cockpit. "You got a minute?"

    TAG @darthbernael @Sinrebirth
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  7. Adalia-Durron

    Adalia-Durron WNU Mod - Always Watching..... star 10 Staff Member Manager

    Jun 3, 2003
    IC Tiber & Zara (Thank you @darthbernael - always such fun and a pleasure)
    On board teh Escape Freighter.

    Tiber was still keeping an eye on the TIEs as they continued down the line of ships when the bridge door opened a second time. He began to turn to ask Bones what he needed and saw it was Zara. His mouth closed and when she asked, he nodded, "Of course." His response was possibly a little quick but his exhaustion was gone just by her presence.

    Entering she sat in the co-pilot seat and spun it to face him. "I need to test something."

    His eyebrow rose, as he turned toward her, "Test something?"

    "Hmm." It was now or never, if this was just the end of a dry spell, this wouldn't be anything out of the ordinary as she'd be over it, if not......well, she'd not dared to think that far. Without warning she lifted her buttocks and leaned forward, locking her lips to his, catching him off guard.

    His eyes opened wide as she surged forward, their lips pressing together. Then a glint of happiness as his arms rose and wrapped around her, without even a thought. He held her loosely, wanting to give her the feeling that she could release if and when she choose. And then he returned her kiss just as deeply.

    This wasn't what she'd expected, it wasn't what she'd planned for. Her lips tingled, her heart rate shot up and that blasted wayward lekku was at it again. She pulled back. "Damn you." She muttered as her fingers went to her lips. "Now what?" She was now thinking out loud.

    His arms opened as she pulled back. He sat back more in the command chair, looking at her. He looked down, blushed slightly, "You know how I feel, Z, the real question is whether you want to see what may develop...or not." he finished softly as he lifted his gaze and looked into her eyes.

    Zara eyed him for a moment before spinning her chair to the front. "I thought ..........." She gave her head a quick shake, "doesn't matter much what I thought, fact is I was wrong." Reaching over her shoulder she grasped the twitching lekku and held it to her shoulder, looking down at it.

    Then it hit her.

    She'd be cursing its reactions from the start, but it was probably the only part of her that was being truthful to not only her feelings but her reactions to him. She closed her eyes for a moment and let the appendage go before turning back. "Ok."

    He sat quietly as she turned away. He could tell she was thinking and he didn't want to interrupt. His hands twisted together slightly on his legs but that was the only sign of his nervousness at what she might say. When she turned back and spoke, "Okay?"

    "Ok,....." She sighed. "I have no idea where this is going, and I can't make any guarantees, no promises, but I am willing to explore this."

    His hands stopped fidgeting as his eyes sought hers. A smile crossed his face. "That's all I ask." He said quietly. "We have time to explore and find out what there is." he continued before reaching out a hand to hers

    Zara gave a satisfied smile as she took his hand, it felt comfortable, easy and right. She wasn't ready to tell him that. "Pair of Fighter pilots with the Resitance, sure we do." A movement out the corner of her eye caught her attention, TIE's. She turned to face front. "What are they up too?" She asked suspiciously, as they were looping around in an almost patrol move. "Have they checked us yet?"

    He chuckled as he spun his chair forward as well. "They've checked and, for the moment, accepted the flight manifest I cobbled together. We're supposedly headed to a vet on Tatooine."

    She smirked. "Arh the big pain my ass has become an asset. Good thinking."

    He smiled broadly, "I figured they would be worth something since it decided to come with us. And makes a decent cover story."

    "'re cleaning up its mess?" She asked slowly turning with an eyebrow raised, "cause there is no way I am."

    He laughed, "If this freighter doesn't have a mech that can do that I'd be surprised." He pulled up the manifest to be sure, "Actually I'd be disappointed if they don't, otherwise the smell would be killer."

    She laughed lightly. "Sounds like home."

    Smiling, "Ah yes, you had big animals back home, I remember you telling me."

    "Mum had them moreso." She shrugged, "I was never fond of displayed earlier."

    He glanced over at her, "Yes, I recall. And I'm sorry, I shouldn't have tried to get you on it. That's actually the last thing I recall before you over me from that moment."

    Another head shake. "Don't apologise. It’s me, not apologising for me, but looking back." She grinned, "my point was proved, don't trust them!" She turned her head to face him, "your over confidence was your downfall."

    He smiled wryly. "My uncle told me they're calm, gentle beasts and can be ridden so I had to try. But I should have listened about possibly being concussed." He rubbed the back of his head at pretend soreness, "Found that out the hard way."

    Another light laugh before she sat staring out forward in silence for a minute or so. "I don't like being here, those First Order ships are just too close for comfort." She mused out loud. "Are we ready to go if push comes to shove?"

    A series of beets and tweets came from the doorway as Bones rolled back onto the bridge. Tiber looked back at it then returned his gaze to Zara, "I sent him back to try to eek out some extra power if we need it. He says he's managed to get us a bit extra and asks if the 'two bloody idiots have figured out how they feel' yet."

    Zara turned slowly to face the droid. "I can still disassemble you.......and at this point I doubt he'd stop me."

    Tiber grinned, "Bones, she's got a point. You're a great little droid but she's well...she." he told the droid. The dome spun around and an almost grumbling series of tweets came out of the astromech. "Well that's your fault for being so sarcastic." Tiber responded.

    Zara rolled her eyes. "Didn't realise I was accepting a family, could have mentioned you had kids." She folded her arms.

    He looked over at her, "Well, they do, some of them, at least have their own personalities. I think you'd be surprised, pleasantly, if you talked to Squirt more." He patted Bones’ dome, "He's got attitude but he's helped keep me alive on more than one occasion on missions. And...he was the one who told me I needed to let you know how I felt before you walked away."

    A knowing smile appeared. "I don't speak the language, but I understand many sounds and Squirt is well versed in sarcasm and war. He was mum's before mine, he's been around a bit. He kept mum alive more than once. He's just not as ......." She glanced at Bones, "blunt."

    Bones tweeted at her, the 'eye' on his dome rotating to face her. "Yes, Squirt is a good droid. And yes, you're blunt." he told the little droid. A disgruntled whistle came from Bones and he rolled backward, almost to the door. "It's my fault, yes, I let you get away with it."

    He turned back to Zara, "I think he also picked it up from the first Bones, that one is my uncle's astromech. And they tend to disappear whenever I visit. He's not a bad droid, but it takes a little while to get used to his attitude." He leaned closer, "But he wasn't wrong. I am glad I told you. Even though it was scarier than the mission earlier, as I had no idea how you'd react."

    "You still don't."

    A small smile touched his face, "True, very true. I can hope and believe what you tell me you feel and that's the best I have."

    "It is." She said quietly.

    TAG @Sinrebirth
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  8. Sinrebirth

    Sinrebirth Mod-Emperor of the EUC, Lit, RPF and SWC star 9 Staff Member Manager

    Nov 15, 2004
    IC: General Hux
    Aboard the Capitol

    There was a cacophony of movement, buzzing around the great dreadnought as if a hive was angrily building up to an advance.

    In the meantime, Hux kept track of sporadic reports from the now-beginning Battle of Exegol.

    These selfsame reports the droid trio conveyed to Zara, Tiber and Jess - when the former two came up for air, that was.

    The droids blatted at each other, amused.

    But then a message began to play across the comms. Hux snapped at Admiral Vonn to block the line, and rued that his warship was just a little too slow to be provisioned.

    If only he'd been over Coruscant already... the jamming device would have stopped this from ever happening -

    The words were from the old rogue Lando Calrissian.

    He was calling in favors, riling up the galaxy, promising freedom, cajoling cooperation, encouraging action.

    It was now or never, he told them, or Kijimi would be their worlds.

    They'd be the next Hosnian Prime.

    That they had hope for only as long as they did something with it.

    That Leia Organa hadn't died for nothing, that the entire Resistance wasn't heading to stop Palpatine alone, that Generals Poe Dameron and Finn couldn't do it without them.

    The droids keened sadly, Jess's expression dropped low.

    Leia... gone?

    At least they knew Poe was alive...

    But he had found the Emperor's secret base?

    Just what were they missing?

    Lando broadcast the coordinates to Exegol, the secret throneworld of the Sith, cradle of the New Empire, to the galaxy. With the help of other old rogues - Wedge Antilles, Talon Karrde, Crev Bombassa, Tendra Rissant, Shalla Zend, Mazzic, even Randa the Hutt - his message scattered like wildfire across the Free Systems, across the First Order -

    "Guys, we need to go."

    Across Kuat, civilian ships began to rise up from personal hangars, private starfighters gunned for orbit, and mutinies occurred across the shipyards -

    The Galactic Rebellion had begun!

    TAG: @darthbernael, @Adalia-Durron
  9. Adalia-Durron

    Adalia-Durron WNU Mod - Always Watching..... star 10 Staff Member Manager

    Jun 3, 2003
    IC Jess/Tiber/Zara - Huge thanks to @darthbernael and @Sinrebirth

    Zara sat forward in her seat, her lips parted to speak but disbelief had taken over. "Leia's dead? How?" She asked. The Rebellion had truly begun but at what cost?

    Tiber sat there, in shock, the Princess was dead?!? He’d only really met her directly the one time but that was still an electric experience. Shaking his head, ”She’s” He took a breath, ”Ok, grieve later, how are we getting out of here, there are ships everywhere, rising from Kuat. I’m sure that SSD isn’t going to just let them take off and join this fleet that’s been called. Do we help them, do we use the confusion to get out and find some fighters? Any ideas?” he asked Zara.

    She was shocked and shook her head. "I dunno." She whispered, she'd not met Leia, but listened to her, seen her and knew she was the heart and soul of the Resistance. What would happen without her? How can they go on?

    Tiber swung in his seat, she was sitting there in shock, ”Zara, come on Zara, I can’t do this myself.” he said, almost desperately, as he swung her seat toward his. ”You want to live as much as I do and we can’t if you give up now. I miss her too but we can’t stop now.” he continued. And then sat forward, a thought filling his head, kissing her, hoping that would break her funk, even if she hit him.

    Zara was unprepared, her eyes wide as she sucked in her breath through her nose before pushing him away. "What are you doing?" She was back.

    Tiber sat back, a sigh of relief escaping his lips, ”Thank the gods, you froze. I had to think quickly to get you back. I can’t do this alone, Z;” he said softly.

    She put her hand to her lips and scowled. "Could have shaken my shoulder!" She turned away and tried to focus again wondering how he could do that, confuse her even more than she was already. Leia's death had shocked her, his kiss had a completely different affect on her. "What did you say?" She asked closing her eyes and attempting to calm herself down, ignoring the new 'dance' her rogue lekku had begun of late.

    He turned his seat most of the way back forward, gesturing out of the viewscreen, ”Kuat is rising, following the call of the Resistance. We need to decide what to do. Do we try to land and find some fighters, do we join them, do we use it as a cover to escape the system?” He pointed at the scope, ”The FO isn’t going to just stand by and let them, I’m sure fighter squadrons are already launching. This is going to get really chaotic and we need to make the right choice.”

    She'd composed herself and turned back to look. "We've got nothing to fight with, I doubt that turret back there works! This is an animal transport!." She glanced over her shoulder to indicate the what she meant. "And I don't think any of us hanging out the side of this crate with a blaster is going to cut it! Not to mention ...Tiny back there!" She pointed in the direction of the Bantha.

    Chuckling, ”Yeah, he does complicate things a bit. I do agree with you about this transport, there’s no way we could use it in a fight. So, ideas otherwise? Think one of the bigger craft could take us on, or do we ground and find fighters somewhere?” he wanted to know what she thought. He had his own ideas but hers were just as important here, he was One but that didn’t mean he was in absolute control.

    Jess appeared out of the sleeping quarters behind them both, filled with emotions as she'd heard the transmission through her droid. Poe would have been at Exegol, of course he was. But Leia...

    "We need to get to Exegol," she said firmly. "We're not equipped to work an uprising. We should head to Ajan Kloss, take whatever ships are left, and tail it to the battle."

    "The bantha....Tiny is it? He will be fine," she said, deciding to be sure.

    Zara spun to face her. "Are you serious!!?? That's at least 3 if not 4 days in Hyper to get there, clear across the galaxy and the kriffin' war will be over by then!"

    Tiber chuckled again but kept an eye on the scope, trying to see where the TIEs were now and whether they could break the queue and get free before they were attacked. "Back down to Kuat then? Land and let Tiny out, probably in some downtown area near a hangar, take whatever craft we can that could actually be of use?"

    Zara began typing frantically into the console and reading as fast as she could. "There's an Air Defense Base near here, well about 3 minutes away, outside the city. Looks like there is land around it and we could maybe steal something?" It was better than nothing.

    Tiber nodded. ”That could work.” He checked on the TIEs again, ”This may get rocky, is Tiny secure enough in case I have to take evasive maneuvers?” he asked as he settled his hands on the controls.

    Zara didn't like it but there was no choice. "Leave it to me." She got up and made her way back to the cargo hold, stopping in the doorway to look at the beast who now swung its large head to face her. "Ok, Tiny, you and I are going to see if we can secure you." Looking around Zara spotted a harness on the wall and made her way to it. "Not sure if this is for you, but we're gonna have to make it fit you!" She dragged it down and laid it out, it looked big enough so she dragged it to lay on the floor in front of the Bantha. "Ok Tiny, do you think you could like.....step into this?" It was a big ask as for all she knew the animal had never been on a ship. She eyed the animal before scanning the roof for hooks or something to secure it on. The animal began to move and it shocked Zara as she stumbled backwards to fall on her buttocks but it was clear 'Tiny' knew what he was doing. "Ok." Zara grunted as she got up and began to grab the sides of the harness and loop the ropes over the large beams up there. It was laborious work and she'd begun to sweat.

    A few minutes passed and Tiber sighed, ”Jess, take the controls, I need to see if all is going well back there.” He pushed back, the seat moving with him.

    Standing, he moved through the transport until he came to the cargo bay. The sight that greeted him made him pause for a moment, Zara stretched out, reaching to attach the cargo straps for what appeared to be a harness for Tiny. A little hiccup in his breath and he started forward once more, ”Need some help, Z?”

    "Gods yes!" She grunted. "He's being really good, but I just can't do this alone!" She pointed to the other side. "If you can get that side up we can suspend him, ships gravity should keep him upright!" It was a long shot, but it was all she had and despite her fear she was going to protect the animal if she could. "You have no idea how........" She stopped, "forget it." She was still afraid of him, but was pushing past her fear, but noticed her hands trembling as she tied off the first rope.

    Smiling, he moved around the bantha, finding the ropes from the other side. She was still fearful of the beast but she was trying, helping it. And that was beautiful. He took the first rope, ”I have no idea what?” he asked as he began to tie off the first rope.

    "Nothing! Forget it. Let's just get this done!" She tossed the second rope over and pulled it tight as she could. "We need to have him tight, so he won't slide." She instructed as she wiped sweat from her brow. "He might break a bone if he falls over!" .

    Tiber double checked the first connection, looking under Tiny as he did. It had his front paws off of the deck and the knots were tight, not slipping. Nodding he sighed as the next ones would get tougher each time, as more of Tiny’s weight was taken up by the sling. He walked over to the panel in the hold, ”Hold on, Z, I’m going to lower the gravity a bit to help us lift him so we can secure him.” he told her before he touched the controls, his feet lifting from the deck.

    Turning and pushing off of the wall, he floated over to Tiny again, reaching to stop his momentum and then moving to the end of the bantha, beginning to tie the rear rope as high and as tightly as the front one.

    Listening she waited and when she saw one side lift, she pulled as well and tied it all off. "Stang I hope it holds you." She muttered before calling over as she pushed herself away from Tiny. "Bring it back on, we need to move now, wasted too much time here!" She called over the top.

    He double checked the knots and ties all along his side and then pushed off, floating back to the wall. He set the grav to return to normal in about ten seconds. ”Yeah, let's get back to the bridge.” he said as he floated over to her. A step from her the gravity came back on and his feet hit the deck, hard.

    Zara hit the deck hard, but not on her feet as she let out a squeal. Tiny attempted to turn in his harness as he squirmed in the new gravity.

    Tiber dropped to his knees, trying to smother a chuckle as he did, ”No getting yourself bruised.” he said as he reached out, knees flexing as he reached under her knees and shoulders, beginning to stand. ”Still, gives me a better excuse to carry you this way than just because I want to.” smiling as he spoke and lifted her.

    He moved way faster than she'd expected and suddenly she was in his arms. She turned to him. "Time and place." She said with a wry smile. "This is neither." Tiny snorted. "He doesn't think so either." Slipping her arm around his neck she rolled herself free. "Come on, we have a war to fight.".

    He laughed, lightly, as she rolled free, ”I saw the chance and I took it. It did get you to your feet, you cannot deny that.” he grinned broadly as he spoke. And then his expression turned serious, ”Yes, we need to get going, I have a feeling they’re going to scrutinize flight plans soon.” he said, beginning the short walk back to the bridge.

    TAG The remaining players, are there any?
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  10. Sinrebirth

    Sinrebirth Mod-Emperor of the EUC, Lit, RPF and SWC star 9 Staff Member Manager

    Nov 15, 2004
    IC: Admiral Vonn
    Kuat, aboard the Capitol

    The massive Megador-class Super Star Destroyer was rushed to deployment, as Vonn attempted to both supply a ten thousand skeleton crew for the Capitol and defend the orbital shipyards from the sudden uprising. He turned to Hux, quipping. "I need to get to Kuat Control, or we're going to lose the planet."

    Hux rolled his jaw. "We need to get the Capitol to Coruscant, Admiral. If we don't, there won't be a First Order to save. I know our strengths and weaknesses, and we cannot survive this if it gets out of hand."

    There were reports of uprisings across the galaxy - at Lothal, at Bespin, at Thyferra, at Coruscant, even on Jakku and the ship left in the Endor system were under attack -

    Vonn seethed. "I respectfully request you hold here and defend Kuat - we need these shipyards -"

    "One barrage, Admiral. That's all you get." Hux held up a finger to emphasize the point. "Detach from the shipyard, now!"

    The officers - his personal loyalists - rushed to comply, and in the chaos of the rush, Vonn turned and marched to the private hangar. He needed to get to Kuat.

    Of course, all this meant for the ships in the air now dancing with a hundred TIE Fighters was that a massive Super Star Destroyer was mobilizing -

    Zara, Tiber and Jess's ship was unnoticed as the madness broke out, and they weren't shooting so the First Order was prioritising armed freighters, smuggler corsairs and even the handful of First Order vessels that were seemingly firing on the yards -

    Until the Capitol opened fire.

    Massive weapons hurled meters thick turbolaser bolts into Kuat City, destroying the besieged hangar, blowing apart a rogue Raider-class corvette, and generally savaging any position they'd lost -

    The blasts ripped through the orbital violence, and were so powerful that they caused a shockwave in the atmosphere -

    It was a good thing Tiny was secure as they were sent tumbling end over end -


    The three astromechs were upended -

    THWACK -

    Jess was hurled into the console and went limp, unconscious -

    BANG -

    A TIE rebounded off the upper hull -

    They were falling out of the sky -

    The ship was functional, but needed someone to take control -

    TAG: @darthbernael, @Adalia-Durron
  11. Adalia-Durron

    Adalia-Durron WNU Mod - Always Watching..... star 10 Staff Member Manager

    Jun 3, 2003
    IC Zara, Tiber, Jess
    Skies above Kuat

    Tiny was secure and Zara was almost to the cockpit, Tiber in her wake. They needed to make a move, sitting here waiting wasn’t a solution. Without warning she was thrown hard into the side wall and just as suddenly the roof was coming up to meet her head. She squealed and put her hands out to stop her head hitting the roof but just as suddenly the other side wall was coming at her. The ship was spinning! Why was the ship spinning!? She tried to look back to Tiber but her vision was blurring with tears and everything was starting to hurt.

    Tiber had a fraction of a second’s awareness that something had gone wrong and reached out to grab Zara when he was pressed hard to the floor and then the ship spun, the wall rising up to meet him. He shook himself, using his hands and feet to keep his head from hitting anything, really didn't need another concussion.

    Shaking his head, he looked up just as the ship spun again and he tried to launch himself to wrap up Zara so he took the brunt of it, but the spin made the jump awkward and instead he hit her back, arms out. Without thinking or caring about placement of his hands he closed his arms around her and rolled as the floor came up again and hit him in the back.

    "FRACK!" She cried as he grabbed her, but there was no time to say anything else as the ship continued to roll. They had to find a way to stop it, and now she weighed twice a much with her newest attachment. Quickly assessing the speed they were rolling she timed her shove off the floor to dive to the cockpit, behind her he was breathing as heavily onto her neck. She could also hear the droids bouncing and screaming. "SQUIRT!!! MAGLOCK AND HELP US!!!" She screamed out.

    With them both together they weren't flailing about as much and Tiber hooked a foot under a protuberance on the wall of the corridor, trying to use his legs to hold them. He pulled her closely as they twisted and he did his best to ignore that it felt good to have her in his arms. It helped that they truly needed to get the ship under control or they'd crash again, to focus his mind.

    "Bones, jack in, get this spin under control so we can get to the bridge." he called out. In a lower tone, "Stop squirming Z, trying to keep up flat against this wall, even as we spin." he told her, trying to exude a sense of calm and not panic.

    Zara groaned inwardly, something hurt badly, she knew what it was but there was no point in complaining, not yet. Finding a metal ring loop, she hooked her hands in and allowed herself to relax against him. She just had to hold on till the spinning stopped and she closed her blue eyes to focus on that, not the pain nor the spinning. As the ship rolled their two droids managed to roll past into the cockpit and lock in.

    Bones rolled across the bridge, pausing just long enough to tweet at Tiber <Careful there you big oaf, hold her gently.> He found a jack in point and the arm locked in. Calculations ran through him in milliseconds and he began firing the attitude jets in a certain order, the spin slowing and the freighter returning upright.

    As the ship began to recover, Tiber loosened his grip some, having heard Bones as he passed. "Did I hurt you Z?" he asked, deep concern in his voice. When the ship righted, he let himself take the brunt of the fall to the floor of the corridor before assisting her to a sitting position, still not having let go, yet. "You ok? I need to see where we are but not going till I'm sure you are ok."

    She let go and allowed herself to fall, and lower her head as she reached up and took hold off one off her lekku. Not only was it cut badly it was bleeding just as badly. "I just need to stop the bleeding." She said painfully, knowing they were thick with not only nerves but blood vessels.

    "Squirt, grab the kit from Bones, bring it here, now." He yelled. A few moments passed and her droid rolled up. "Hold still, Z, I'll get you taken care of." Taking the kit, he cleaned out the wound, knowing it hurt her as he did but he had to make sure it was clean and the blood out. Before it started flowing again, he sprayed in a bacta solution, filling the deep cut. He laid the roll bandage to the side as he used some adhesive medical closures to pull the edges together. Once that was done, he slid a bacta sleeve up the Lekku until it was centered on the wound. Finally, he wrapped the whole thing in the bandage to secure it in place. "Best I can do until I get you to a medic. I'll have Bones monitor it too. I'm sorry Z, if I did that."

    She closed her eyes and just let it happen, tears were falling but they were of pain she was trying to control and move through. Once it was done and the ship steadied, she sat up a little. "No, you didn't and its fine, thanks. Jess? Where's Jess?" She asked as she tried to find her feet, "I'll go find her, you get us out of here and away from whatever caused that." Her voice quivered as the pain had eased but wasn't gone, now it was throbbing.

    "You sure? I've got painkillers in here too. I know we need to check on Jess too but you need to take care as well." He said, even as he helped her into a better sitting position. Closing the kit and placing it by her side, he handed her the vial of painkillers. "Take some or I'll give you something stronger as soon as we have a moments peace so you rest and heal. Consider me your medic at the moment." he said, remembering back to the short training that they've given the pilots that wanted that skill added to their repertoire.

    “I’m fine….” She pulled herself up and away from him, her pain was real but finding something else to focus on was paramount right now. “Get the ship sorted, I’ll check on Jess.” She began to make her way down the corridor toward the young woman’s cabin, unsteady on her feet and feeling queasy but when she opened the door what lay before her made her realise she was way less hurt. “JESS!!” She cried surging forward to the inert form who lay on the floor in an awkward position, her head was bleeding but she was unconscious. She looked around, but she wasn’t strong enough, she couldn’t lift the young woman to her bed, or even check her vitals. “TIBER!?!?!” She cried out; seems he was the only one not visibly hurt.

    Tiber had begun to make his way to the controls when he heard Zara yelling. Before she even yelled his name; he was halfway down the corridor. He rounded the doorframe and saw her struggling with an unconscious Jess. Skidding to a halt, "Z, take her feet and I'll get her shoulders and neck." He moved to Jess's upper end, reaching down into the bag and pulling out a slap on patch that would give a readout of her vitals. Pressing it to Jess's forehead, it stuck in place and began displaying that information. "You lift there and I here and we'll get her in bed and then I'll get the bleeding of her head taken care of before checking for anything broken."

    Zara did as she was told, it was a first but right now she was in daze due to her pain and once Jess was settled, she stood back. "I'm just.... going to see where we are, and........what's happening." Turning she made her way back to the cockpit to find the two droids beeping and tweeting like mad things. Her head ached, but her lekku throbbed and the pain made her want to sleep. Slipping into the co-pilot's seat she automatically pulled her crash webbing on, it was necessary, that was clear. "Where are we?" She scanned the screens and the information began scrolling as one of the droids gave her answer. The assault on Kuat city was continuing, they'd been hit and we way off course now, heading west away from the city and away from the base that'd been their plan. Then it showed the base was under attack, ruling it out. "Where too now?" She wondered out loud as she scanned the galactic map.

    Tiber saw Zara head out to the cockpit after they got Jess into the bed. He was worried about her, she was wobbling and she could be the one with a concussion now. He cleaned the wound on her head, doing something similar to hers as he had with Zara's, finishing it with a bacta patch and a bandage. Once that was done, he checked her for broken bones. The way she'd been twisted on the floor he paid attention to her legs, sure enough one was broken and he found a couple long pieces to use as splints to secure it. He wrapped her ribs too, they'd 'given' too much when he checked them and last thing they needed was one puncturing a lung as they flew. Finally he secured her to the bed, including a neck brace, conscious of the broken bones as he made sure she wouldn't move.

    Wearily he made his way to the bridge, slumping into the pilot's chair, securing his harness, then looking over to Zara. The ways her eyes tracked banished the tiredness for a moment, worry taking over. "Z, found us anything?" he asked, trying to keep her awake and focused on something.

    "I think" She touched a few keys, "Carida. Kuat is under attack, we have to get"

    He looked at the data packet on Carida. "Yeah, we do need to get out of here. There's too much going on here, it's getting too hot and all this is going to get us killed, if we stay here, before we can do anything to assist." He studied the data a bit more. "Carida does look like the best nearby option. And may have something we can either jury rig or 'borrow' to get back in the fight. Plus, we should be able to let Tiny loose. Although I hope we can get a tracker on him, for later. I'd feel guilty if we don't help him again, when we can."

    She gave a vague nod. "There's an abandoned Imperial base from the old Rebellion. Who knows what's...there?” She let her head fall back and closed her eyes, musing she must have lost a good deal of blood to feel like this.

    "Z, can't let you sleep yet. Worried about a concussion." spilled from him. He reached down into the medkit and found another of the diagnostic sensors. Leaning over, "Sorry, don't care if you don't like how this looks, not losing you." He said as he adhered it between her lekku and waited for the readout to begin.

    She pushed him away. "I didn't hit my head....just lekku on a something. Lots of nerves...lots of blood in there..." She said with a touch of annoyance. "I'm fine. How’s Jess?"

    "And you believe that blood loss and nerves sending constant pain signals from that area cannot lead to a concussion? Riiiiigggghhhhtttt." He began. "Jess is bandaged up, has some cracked ribs and a broken leg. All taped up and splinted. Still asleep in her bunk, strapped down. And I have the same sensor on her, monitoring her vitals." he pointed to the split screen on his pad, Jess's data on one side and hers on the other.

    She reached up and ripped the pad off. "I said I am fine! This isn't the first time this has happened; I have brothers and I know my body. I am going to be fine, and I do not need you fussing like a nursemaid. Can we just find a way to get off Kuat and to Carida please?" She was annoyed, he was being overly protective, reminding her of her mother and that bugged her.

    "Fine, be that way but when you pass out that's on you. Take us to Carida then, I'm going to go check on Tiny." He was annoyed as well now. If she was going to fuss over him when he could have had and then did have a concussion and then refuse his aid when he did the same then she was being quite the hypocrite.

    He unsnapped his harness and stood, heading down the passage to the cargo space.

    Zara snorted and began her plan. They didn't need 'permission' to leave the planet, it was under attack and she doubted anyone cared if they blasted off world. "Squirt, activate the navi-com, get us a jump point to Carida, when you have it let me know, I'll get us to that point." She did not need to be babied, she knew this was just pain and a bit of blood loss. His first machinations to help had been welcome but now he was just fussing and that bugged her. Sitting back she pulled the lekku forward gently in its bindings, smiling at the neatness of the wrapping. Probably needed some time apart, they'd just had a shock and both needed to cool off. Her lekku had now reduced to a decent throb and experience told her that would hang around for a few hours yet.

    Tiber walked the short distance to the cargo hold, fuming. He'd heard from Bones about how she'd been when he'd been injured and that she acted diffidently when he did something similar as she was hurt annoyed him.

    Shaking his head, he heard the long lowing of Tiny as he entered the hold. "You and me both, big guy." He muttered. Working his way around the bantha he checked the tightness of the straps, ensuring they hadn't loosened in the spin. He could tell that Tiny had swayed some in it and found some padding, pushing against the creature and slipping it between the straps and Tiny's body. At the complaining sounds from Tiny, "Everyone's a critic today..." he muttered darkly.

    Satisfied, he backed off, sitting on a cargo crate. He wasn't heading back up to the bridge right now, possibly he'd say something he'd regret later. As the gentle hum of the ship lulled him, he began to notice the aches and pains from the battering he'd taken and slumped back against the bulkhead, eyes closing and drifting off.

    TAG @Sinrebirth @Kurisan
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  12. Sinrebirth

    Sinrebirth Mod-Emperor of the EUC, Lit, RPF and SWC star 9 Staff Member Manager

    Nov 15, 2004
    IC: D’Arcy
    Ajan Kloss

    Carida, or rather the nebula at the edge of the system, was the location of a secret Resistance refuelling depot, concealed in an abandoned station there. Jess remained unconscious, but stable, and the droids busied themselves running the ship, which had all manner of maintenance issue outstanding. Tiny grumbled at and nuzzled with Zara, but was content to be settled.

    Their ship arrived without issue - all they could say with certainty was that the big Super Star Destroyer had vanished into hyperspace -

    It was heading towards Coruscant.

    But that was all they could say about the Megador-class bearing the name Capitol.

    When they arrived the hangar of the abandoned station lit up, and it sent a signal to Ajan Kloss that one of their depots had been accessed. In short order, they had a comlink call. “This is Commander D’Arcy. Identify yourself before I activate the droid cannons.”


    Her voice was on edge.

    No surprises; the Resistance was currently fighting for its life at Exegol - along with her wife.

    TAG: @Adalia-Durron, @darthbernael (combo)
    Last edited: May 31, 2021
  13. darthbernael

    darthbernael EU Community Mod, House was on fire, didn't do it star 4 Staff Member Moderator

    Apr 15, 2019
    IC Tiber and Zara, combo with @Adalia-Durron and short guest role by @Sinrebirth
    Carida, arriving

    Tiber sighed, of course they’d gotten through all they had at Kuat only to have their own people threatening them. He settled back into the pilot’s seat then keyed the comm, ”D’Arcy, Black one and Two of Black Squadron here. We had to ‘borrow’ this transport after the events at Kuat. And just managed to get here after the SSD in orbit departed.” he transmitted.

    Turning to Zara, ”I really hope Poe had our mission on record because I don’t want to die at the hands of our own people.”

    Zara had been settling a hungry bantha, "Whoever shoots, I don't want to die, pretty sure Tiny doesn't either." She wandered in and sat down. "Jess is stable."

    ”Glad Tiny is good. A bantha going nuts in here would ruin our day. And Jess, hopefully this station has a medbay that we can get her into a bacta tank in. Hmmm.” he said, a small smile on his face as he looked over at Zara. And then he suddenly had a thought.

    Keying the comm once more, ”Commander D’Arcy, we also have onboard a bantha that followed us. The only other survivor of our squadron, Black 3 is injured but currently stable. Does this station have facilities that could help either of them? And does it have any X Wings, ours got pranged in the last mission.” he sent.

    Zara raised her eyebrows at his turn of phrase. The word 'pranged' was one she'd not heard before, she suspected there were a lot of things about him she didn't know but there was time to learn them.

    Tiber smiled at her, letting the transport’s sensors keep an ‘eye’ on the turrets as they waited for a response. ”So, if they have ships for us, are we following the signal to this Exegol place?” he asked. They’d given so much already but it hadn’t ended yet. And somehow he doubted they’d be satisfied until they managed to finish the First Order.

    Zara frowned. "To what end? The battle will be long over by the time we get there, hells, they might have even been defeated and a pair of X Wings turning up to a lost battle will be target practice for the First Order." She shrugged, "and if by a miracle we win, we turn up for the party only?"

    D'Arcy seemed happy to have heard from them. "Zara! Tiber!" She solemned a bit over the news about Jess, but frowned at the idea of a Bantha aboard. "Our medical facilities are all on Ajan Kloss. If Jess is critical, I'd recommend coming straight here."

    She hesitated. "Did you hear Lando's call? I've seen reports of thousands of ships across the galaxy heading to Exegol! Uprisings across many major worlds!" The relief in her voice was palpable.

    Tiber keyed the comm again, ”Yes, we heard the call, were trying to get free of Kuat when it went out but only have had this thing to fly.” He looked at Zara to be sure and then continued, ”We should be able to make it to Ajan Kloss, yes. And I think Jess should be fine for that trip, as long as we aren’t ambushed. And I am sorry to report we lost Dev in the assault on the Eclipse he told D’Arcy.

    He clicked off the comm, "It sounds like it still hasn't or is still going on. But I'm guessing the only place we'll find usable ships is where D'Arcy is. That and help for Jess, possibly a good place for Tiny too." he told her.

    "But it's four days in Hyper?" Zara said with dismay. "Don't know about you, but I am pretty sure I can't do that in an X Wing. I have....needs." She didn't want to go into the necessity for refreshers or food and water for that matter.

    Tiber grinned slightly, at her choice of words, but understood what she meant. He checked the star charts. ”More like two days but still two days too many to spend in a fighter’s cockpit. Let’s just focus on getting to Ajan Kloss for now so we can get Jess taken care of and something for Tiny.”

    Zara sighed with a nod. "One thing at a time."

    He smiled again, ”Exactly. It does give us a bit more time, with all this travelling, to get to know each other more too.” he said softly.

    Zara gave her head a slight shake. "All working in your favour." She smirked.

    Tiber leaned back, hand over his heart, "Oh you wound me, just my favor?" he asked, teasingly.

    Zara rolled her eyes. "Oh the you'll be telling me you need to be kissed better." She raised her eyebrow. "Let's just get Jess taken care of and Tiny fed."

    Tiber chuckled then met her gaze, ”Oh no, never going to critique your kisses, each is unique and delightful. But...yeah we should doublecheck Jess is secure and find something in the cargo to feed him, not to mention us.” He locked in Ajan Kloss to the hyper computer and when it spit out the calculations he moved them away from the station and engaged the hyper. ”Ok, we’re on our way,” he held out his hand to her as he stood, ”so let’s do so.”

    "I just did that, before I came here, so if you wish to check on them all again, be my guest." Zara said as she ignored his hand and turned back to face front. "There isn't any food for Tiny back there that I saw."

    "All in the wording, Z, but since you just did we don't need to right away. And why did you tell me that about Tiny after I jumped us to hyper and not when we could have scrounged the station first?" he asked, wondering about the cold shoulder all of a sudden.

    Zara pursed her lips, "I guess I assumed you knew there wasn't food on board a disused freighter we had to repair to fly, sorry." She said with genuine regret. "He's not skinny, so he will survive." She turned, "What's the hurry to get back there?"

    ”I did hope they had some long storage rations for creatures that could have been transported, my mistake, but yeah he should be able to survive.” He dropped back into his seat, holding the lever to let it slide back, facing forward now himself.

    ”And honestly, aside from the few moments we’ve had I’ve not let myself focus on anything except making sure I got you back safely. Well, you especially but also Jess as well as Tiny now. -” He sighed, rubbing his face. ”When all I really want is time away from the chaos, with you. Which we do have some of now.” he throttled back the hyperdrive to it’s slowest setting as he spoke.

    She turned to him. "We're alone now." She stated, "What's back there that's not here?" She asked curiously. "Im here, you're here...." She put both her palms to the ceiling.

    He spun his seat to face hers, pulled it forward slightly before reaching down, doing the same to hers, until their legs interlinked between them. ”Nothing back there that can’t wait.” and then leaned forward, one hand gently stroking a lekku as his lips met hers.

    She allowed that then sat back. "There's plenty of time for said get to know me. I'm here, get to know me and I'll do the same to you."

    He sat back, a small smile on his face, ”A question for a question? You ask first?”

    Zara flinched slightly, she'd noted quickly he was very 'hands on' and she was not used to that. She'd dated in the past, and most men weren't interested in 'intimate and gentle' touches, the only real ones she'd ever had were from her parents. So when he cupped her face, or ran his fingers over her lekku, she almost felt her personal space was being invaded. She'd only agreed to 'date' him a few hours ago, he was moving fast. Maybe too fast for her? "I did, still close to them." She needed to get him off intimate subjects. "Ok, next question, most embarrassing moment to date."

    He saw her flinch and knew he’d crossed a line when he’d cupped her cheek, misinterpreting it but the thought coming because of what he saw. He sat back, arms now on the arms of his flight stool. ”Most embarrassing moment, hmmmm. That may possibly have to be when I borrowed a transport skiff and had to explain to my parents why the authorities had to pull me out of an upside down, stuck skiff when I misjudged the distance between two buildings and got it wedged in place.”

    Lifting his heel he tripped the lever and let the seat slide back, she didn’t want his touches and he wasn’t going to ignore her feelings. Lifting one leg and setting his ankle on his thigh, ”And yours?”

    Zara smirked before laughing lightly. "A devil child then?" She appreciated him acknowledging her reaction, minor as it was. "Hmmm." She sat back herself and thought, growing up on in a human environment, there were many. "Maybe more humiliation? High school, I wanted to play full contact Football, joined the team and first training the coach told us to suit up. Grabbed my gear realized too late, helmets don't fit........" she looked up, "this lot. Whole team was starting at me, then one started to laugh.......and another." She shrugged, "Never signed up for a team again. I learned to run and keep fit by myself." She tried to move on from that fast. "Ok, favorite subject in school?"

    He frowned slightly at the story. He could see how that could have contributed to insecurities and was quite unfair of the other students. But he also remembered his days at that age and knew that teens were often very unfair or judgmental and cruel. When she asked her follow on question he blushed slightly. ”Well....aside from flying,” he began, blushing more, ”ummm, my favorite subject was...xenobiology.” He said the last word in a quiet rush. A cough to cover the blush, ”And yours?” he asked hurriedly.

    She tilted her head to the side and raised her eyebrow with a wry smile. "Am I a project?" She asked, seeing the colour in his cheeks and seizing the opportunity to see how he took torment. "I liked stellar cartography, but wasn't great at it. I guess it was my need to be out there that fed that."

    His blush deepened even more, he could feel it creeping down his neck. ”Funny, not. No, definitely not a project. You could say my interest in it was similar to why you studied stellar cartography. To know all those out there. I learned a lot but there’s always more to know.” he started off strong and finished softly.

    She shrugged. "Maybe I should be your project?" She shot him a secretive smile. "The more you learn, the better the presentation." Zara smirked and winked.

    He chuckled, the blush fading slightly, ”You mean like pair bonding between a Lexrullan and a Twi’lek?” he asked, smiling again. ”Somehow I can see that research taking many years to complete.”

    "Interesting. Planning ahead I see." She smiled and got up. "I'm going to check on Jess, you go see how Tiny is, and see if you can find him something to eat? Stand clear, he might bite you instead." She turned and left, being sure to 'sway her hips' as she did so.

    He knew she knew that he was watching as she walked out. The sway of her hips told him as much. A small smile crossed his face. ”Yes, I don’t need to lose fingers or an arm to him if he’s that hungry.” he replied as he stood and followed a slight distance behind, at least until their paths diverged and he headed to the cargo area to feed their bantha.

    TAGS: @Sinrebirth, @Adalia-Durron
  14. Sinrebirth

    Sinrebirth Mod-Emperor of the EUC, Lit, RPF and SWC star 9 Staff Member Manager

    Nov 15, 2004
    IC: D’arcy
    Ajan Kloss

    It took some time to get to Ajan Kloss from the Carida system, but they gathered plenty of Intel from their brief jaunt into the inner systems. Corellia, Coruscant, Kuat and Thyferra were rebelling; Jakku, Lothal, Bespin, Tatooine were as well in the Outer Rim. Hapes, Bothawui and Bastion had thrown off their local oppressors. It was the same Galactic Rebellion that had torn down the old Empire after the Battle of Endor - but the free people had sent their collected armada to Exegol, and the leadership of the First Order had been all gathered there rather than spread out across the galaxy.


    Give or take.

    The movements of that Megador-class remained a mystery, unless it was en route to Exegol by way of Coruscant?

    But suffice to say, by the time they reached Ajan Kloss, they would be in for a surprise.

    A few moments after they arrived, ships began pouring out of hyperspace. Hundreds; thousands. Among them were a dozen recognisable pennant codes.

    Millennium Falcon, Ghost, Outrider, Lady Luck, Pulsar Skate, Wild Karrde, Galactic Voyager, Home One, Slave I, Viscount -

    The identifications for X-wings flown by Poe Dameron, Rey, Wes Janson, Syal and Rhoen Aquilla, Finnefrael ‘Feral’ Ordwgal, Traer Lin -

    And more besides.

    There were so many names.

    Most of the ships were battle-scarred, yes, but the channels were full of cheers and celebrations and joy.

    “Palpatine is dead! Long live the New -“

    “The First Order is finished -“

    “We lost Snap -“

    “I heard Kylo Ren saved Rey -“

    “Nien Nunb and the Tantive IV didn’t -“

    “I heard a local leader, Gherlid, just forced the surrender of a Star Destroyer -“

    “Did you see that Sith fleet go down? It was incredible -“

    They’d arrived at the finish.

    TAG: @Adalia-Durron, @darthbernael
  15. Adalia-Durron

    Adalia-Durron WNU Mod - Always Watching..... star 10 Staff Member Manager

    Jun 3, 2003
    IC Zara Chrischa, Tiber Ordgwal.
    On board the Freighter.

    Zara watched as Tiny ate the small amount of food she'd spread for him; they'd learned he was a he. Tiber had found some pellet food, not much but it was all they had so she was rationing it. The water was a different story, she could only give the beast a small bowl of it. Digging had produced only two one litre bottles of clean water, so there was no bathing and only sips were being rationed to all three of them. Zara felt drained, Jess had been drifting in and out of consciousness, and moaning. At least she was alive and that was a positive though. Tiny moaned at the pitiful amount of food.

    "I know, I know. I'm sorry. I promise we will find you all the food you can eat and a big drink of water when we get there." There seemed to be taking forever to get too. She'd spent the last few days trying to avoid any sort of real intimacy, Tiber had been trying but respecting her wishes. She didn't know how much longer she could hold out, she cared, she liked him, probably more than she'd ever liked anyone before. It was important to keep in mind she hardly knew him, and keeping her own pace was important.

    Tiber was on the bridge, stomach growling. He was trying not to think about that, or that Zara was feeling more distant. The last hurt more than the first, in all honesty. But they were approaching Ajan Kloss and could get off the ship soon, he hoped. In hyper they had no idea what was happening or whether they'd have to land, get cleaned up, and get back to battle. Down the corridor he could hear the whines of the bantha and knew that beast needed food even more than they did.

    Glancing at Bones, "Any way to get this heap to go any faster, the sooner we get there, the sooner we can get be done here." he asked. Chirps and whistles sounded, "Yeah, yeah, I know that's the hundredth time I've asked but.." he sighed, looking down. "Z, not sure she's going to stick around when this is done. Not sure where we'll go if that's the case..." he trailed off.

    She'd checked on Jess, for now she was quiet and that was a small victory. When she was restless and calling out, it was distressing. She was heading back to the cockpit when she heard him talking, stopping to listen. Maybe she was playing it too cool and distant? She was so nervous about her growing emotions and sure they'd learned more about each other and none of it had turned her off, and clearly, he'd not been deterred. "What makes you think I'm going anywhere?" She asked quietly as she stepped over the threshold.

    His head whipped around and a deep blush touched his face. He hadn't heard her approaching but obviously she'd heard what he'd been telling Bones. "I...I don't." he stammered. He looked down before making himself look her in the eyes, "I just didn't know if I've been too much or that being around me so much was changing how you felt. It's felt like that, between us, the last couple days."

    Zara gave him a warm smile. "So me not wanting to rush this is making you think I'm done already?" She moved in and sat down in the co pilots seat, turning to face him. "You might know, you say this is it for you, but I'm not you. I need time to explore my own feelings." She paused before reaching out and taking his hand, "what's the rush? Aside from what I know you want. If this is going to work I need time to get where you are. Does that make sense?"

    He nodded, "It does make sense. But if you don't tell me these things I don't know." he said with a soft smile. "I'm not the most experienced with relationships so don't know how they go outside of Lexrullans so sometimes what I do know outside of that is...lacking." he admitted.

    She chuckled. "Yeah, I didn't just wake up and know." She squeezed his hands, "I see you side, do you see mine? Have you tried to put yourself here?"

    He squeezed hers back, "I'm trying, and I'll keep trying, Z, now that I know."

    "I appreciate that. much longer is this trip for the damned going to last?"

    Just as she finished speaking Bones whistled and Tiber glanced at the panel. "Oh, about another 30 seconds, I'd say." with a chuckle. Moments later the blur of hyper resolved and suddenly they were there. He opened his mouth to tell her they were there when space began to get more and more crowded. Ship after ship popped into the system and the comm chatter was a constant buzz. He listened for a moment, "Seems we just missed the battle, Z."

    She turned look and listen, it was more than confusing, she was trying to make sense of it. "We won?" Zara asked.

    He listened a bit more, looking around and pointing out various famous craft. He squinted for a moment..."Wait, is that my uncle's ARC 170?" he asked absently. Shaking his head, he squeezed her hand again, looking at her, "It really sounds like it, sounds like the war is over."

    Zara sat back and stared, she was sure she recognized some of the ships jumping in and the comm chatter was excited, fast and positive in most cases. There were loses, she got that but there were loses in all wars. “We won.” She muttered in disbelief before frowning. “Your Uncle?”

    Tiber looked to the area where he'd seen the fighter-bomber last and when he spotted it again, he pointed, "That looks like, has the same paint job as my uncle's fighter. But I didn't know he was involved here."

    Zara nodded. His family, meeting them? Is that too soon? “Ok. Did you want to catch up with him?” She asked cautiously.

    He thought about it. "If he hangs around, sure. But right now, I want to get us down, so we can get Jess taken care of, Tiny too, and we can eat and shower and maybe have some time without the stress of combat or low rations."

    "Rations? Is that what you call water?" She let out a sigh. "I want to drink a huge glass of water, I want to eat ......anything, gods I'm hungry and I want to soak in a bath tub for hours." She snorted softly. "And to get that I'd have to go home, I'm sure. So, can we request permission and get priority ....Sir?" She asked with a smirk.

    "Sir....hmmm, I like that." he teased back. A deep smile followed. "Ahhh yes, to just stand under a stream of water or soak in it for hours, that would be heaven right now. So, I guess we better get on it." he said and reached for the comm.

    Zara stood and leaned down, planting a kiss on the top of his head. "Oh...., yeah, you need to wash." She said as she wiped her lips. "I'm going to tell Jess, maybe she'll hear me." She shrugged, "You can land us."

    He grinned, "I'll wash your back if you wash mine." his eyes gleaming playfully as he said it. Then held up his hands, "Kidding. Let me know how she's doing and I'll get us down." he told her.

    "It ain't your back I'm worried about."

    TAG @Sinrebirth
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  16. Sinrebirth

    Sinrebirth Mod-Emperor of the EUC, Lit, RPF and SWC star 9 Staff Member Manager

    Nov 15, 2004
    IC: Rey

    The battered X-wing that had served Luke Skywalker landed, and she found them.

    Finn, Poe, Chewbacca, Artoo, BB-8, Threepio, and of course D-0.

    She drew Finn and Poe into a hug and they just cried into each other for a long, long, time.


    There were many expressions of relief and love around Zara and Tiber, while Ackbar Junior took Jess and assured them she would be fine.

    They saw Snap's wife Karé Kun in tears - he hadn't made it.

    They saw Larma D'Arcy and her wife Wrobie Tyce kiss in reunion.

    There were many, many, many other reunions and moments.

    It was over.

    The war had been won.

    Palpatine was dead.

    TAG: @darthbernael, @Adalia-Durron
  17. darthbernael

    darthbernael EU Community Mod, House was on fire, didn't do it star 4 Staff Member Moderator

    Apr 15, 2019
    OOC: Comboing with @Adalia-Durron

    IC Zara and Tiber
    Celebration and the Future

    Zara stood in the doorway, top of the ramp watching in a kind of hazy disbelief.

    The War was over.

    They’d won.

    Evil had been vanquished.

    She’d spent a couple years now, since she was 18, fighting this war for freedom. Fighting like her parents did so the galaxy could live free of the tyranny of the First Order, this time, the Empire in her parents’ time. Why did someone always want to just rule, control and not democracy? Sure, the latter took longer but it meant everyone had a voice. Watching Zara was a little overwhelmed and stepped back from the joyous and excited hugging. She wasn’t good in crowds nor unwanted touching.

    Tiny, he needed food and looking around she saw a huge amount, so without hesitation she headed to the cargo area, opening the loading door, she lowered the ramp. “Come on Tiny.” She urged. The bantha growled at her, shaking its head. “Food?” She stepped down the bottom and broke off a large leaf and returned to show him. “See, come on, there’s heaps more down here.” Slowly the bantha tested the ramp before following her down and devouring the leaf before diving into more. Zara smiled, she’d started off hating the beast, but it’d wormed its way into her heart now. Sitting down at the top of the ramp she was content to hide there behind the bantha where no one would find her. The War was over and she didn’t know what was next for her, she just knew going home to run charity events wasn’t an option.

    Tiber finished shutting down the engines and making sure the ship was secure as he heard Zara working with Tiny. He had a feeling she was trying to get him out and into the jungle area so he could feed, to his giant heart’s content. Unstrapping himself he heard Bones whistle and turned toward his little droid, ”Yeah, looks like we won, better go join the celebration before they pull us out and make us do so.”

    Wandering through the ship he noticed they’d taken Joy already and hoped that she’d make a full recovery. She was a good pilot and person. As he approached the ramp, he saw Zara standing at the top of it, where she could watch the bantha but be mostly out of sight of the others. Her lekku were moving slowly making him wonder what she was thinking about. Walking up to her, he hugged her for a moment before stepping to the side.

    ”You look deep in thought, Z. I need to make our presence known but I am here and will be, for you. Don’t forget that.” he said softly, reaching out to squeeze her hand before walking slowly down the ramp. Around them the party was in full swing and he could see the ‘real’ heroes of the Resistance celebrating, hugging, kissing, talking.

    He wandered over toward where he saw Poe, but then paused, he wasn’t going to interrupt the moment that Poe was having. Glancing around he didn’t see anyone else he recognised, which made him wonder if he’d hallucinated seeing his uncle’s ship.

    Even that hug had almost been an invasion, there was a lot of noise and she just wanted to be away from it. As he spoke, she turned to squeeze his hand back but said nothing, she hoped the simple act was all he needed to know she understood. Sitting down she wrapped her arms around her legs. They’d won. Her mother had said she understood her reasons for going but Zara had promised she’d come home, she’d resume her place in the family. The time had come for her to go.

    She didn’t want to go.

    Things had changed, things weren’t that simple. She rest her chin on her knees. What did she do next.?

    Finally, the hug ceased and Poe noticed that Tiber was standing there, looking like the awkward kid at the dance. He glanced over at the freighter they’d come in on and could see Zara’s feet but no more. Walking over to the young man, “Command is not easy, is it, Tiber?” he asked.

    Tiber had seen Poe coming over and the question threw him off. ”Uhhh, yes I mean no, it’s not. I lost Dev and almost lost Jess. If it hadn’t been for Zara…” a light blush spread around the neckline of the Preserve jumpsuit he wore, ”I might not have made it. She is amazing and if the war hadn’t ended I’d say I want her to stay my wingman.”

    Poe smiled sardonically, “Oh? That much is it?” he teased slightly. “Well...we may have defeated Palpatine and the Exegol forces but that one SSD escaped Kuat and there are other First Order forces still to mop up. So, you may get your wish.”

    Tiber blushed even more at the teasing, but he couldn’t help it. ”I do suppose you’re right. I’d have to check with her but if she’s still wanting to then I say we’re on board.”

    He glanced back, seeing Zara’s boots. He knew she had a life away from here but he hoped that she’d want to help clean everything up. It may not be glorious combat but after their last mission some ‘calmer’ missions would be nice.

    Poe nodded, understanding that Tiber would want to talk to Zara first. Deeper understanding was beginning to bloom as well, bringing a sly smile to his face. “Go check with her, hope you both stick with us.”

    Tiber felt like his face was on fire with the blush now so he simply nodded. When he got back to the freighter, he walked up the ramp until he reached Zara. Squatting down, he looked in her eyes. He could see worry, concern, and a listlessness. ”Z, I need to ask you something. Poe said they need pilots to clean up the remaining First Order strongholds and ships that may not have been destroyed yet, like that monster that escaped Kuat. Will you stay on and be my wingman, wingwoman, whatever the word is?” hope and worry that she’d say no vying for prominence in his tone.

    Zara sat up a little, releasing her arms. “Really? We’re not going home?”

    He smiled, she seemed more animated in that moment, "Is that a yes?" he asked, hope blooming even brighter in the question.

    Zara grinned, "I mean I miss home, but home is boring. Yes!! I'm not ready to be boring yet!"

    He smiled broadly, moving forward, as though to hug her but then remembered the stiffness when he'd done so to go see the others, "Yay! I'm very glad. I really don't want to have anyone else flying on my wing." he said instead.

    She wiggled over and patted the space. "I feel better now, I was really down about"

    He turned, sitting down, the blush returning slightly. "If you'd have left you may have found a 'war hero' deciding to settle on Bakura soon after." he admitted with a small smile. "I know we have a lot more to experience together and if it had meant doing that I would have."

    She turned and looked at him, his words were genuine and that surprised her a little. It was clear he was serious about this. Turning back to watch Tiny she leaned against him and put her head on his shoulder. “I believe you.” She said quietly as she watched the Bantha eat. “What are we going to do with him?”

    He smiled as she leaned against him, leaning his head against hers. Looking over at the bantha stuffing himself with food, "Hmmm, there are options, perhaps. We could find him a Preserve that has a large enough range for him and will allow us to visit him, we could return him to the wilds but not knowing which world he came from that could be difficult, or maybe we could ask your parents if they have space for such a beast, or a veterinarian that could be there for him." The bantha had grown on him as it seemed to have on Zara and he wanted to do what was best for it but there were options.

    "We have options.......there's a bit of time." She responded just as her one wayward lekku began to react to her emotions and curled over his shoulder without her noticing.

    He wanted to reach up and stroke her lekku a bit but he had a feeling she hadn't noticed it's movement so he only did so once before reaching over and placing his hand on hers, "We do. I'm sure this 'party' will last a little longer than expected before they decide to get back to work."

    TAGS: @Sinrebirth, @Adalia-Durron
  18. Sinrebirth

    Sinrebirth Mod-Emperor of the EUC, Lit, RPF and SWC star 9 Staff Member Manager

    Nov 15, 2004
    The aftermath of the Battle of Exegol was a time of unprecedented cooperation and alliance. Within days, the Free Systems and the Hapans, Wookiee’s, the Bothans and the species of Mon Calamari fought off the First Order conquerors.

    In the weeks to come, Resurgent-class Star Destroyers retreated into the Core or were destroyed by the Galactic Rebellion. But several fell into the hands of local warlords in the Outer Rim - Gherlid, the Hutts, the Aqualish, the Tarkin’s, the Corporate Sector. They each seized a complement of First Order ships and a small section of worlds - systems the new Alliance intended to free.

    In the months thereafter, the Inner Rim turned into a battlefront as the surviving First Order fleets attempted to hang on to Kuat, Corellia and Thyferra, but it was expected to be a matter of time before they were defeated. Save for Coruscant, which to no-ones surprise had not joined in the spirit of the times and a showdown was expected with a handful of unaccounted Super Star Destroyers.

    But the Senate had convened anew, the galaxy was stepping towards harmony, and the former members of the Resistance formed the nucleus of the Alliance Core Fleet. Led by Generals Finn, Poe Dameron and Wedge Antilles, it was always first on the scene when a new battle broke out, committed to scouting the galaxy for threats and ferreting out the First Order Remnant.

    Everyone knew the war was won.

    It was just a matter of the First Order accepting it.
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  19. Adalia-Durron

    Adalia-Durron WNU Mod - Always Watching..... star 10 Staff Member Manager

    Jun 3, 2003
    C Zara and Tiber and Poe
    Recon gone ‘wrong’

    Zara angled her X Wing to the port slightly to look at the terrain below, trees, lots and lots of trees. “Anything Squirt?” Her droid warbled back a non-committal sound she understood. “Yeah, that’s what I thought.” She opened the private com. “Trees T, lots of trees, and teeming with life.” This recon mission had become boring, their goal was to find a planet, uninhabited if possible, for the Resistance to hide on. This was the fourth moon of an unnamed planet in the New Territories sector. Many of the planets here had not been explored, so it was a perfect place to start. “No sentient life and no settlements from what I can get from Sparks scans. Might be what we are looking for.” She studied the screen and looked out again before straightening up her X Wing.

    Tiber brought his X Wing into a close formation with Zara. He'd just finished his own scans and was processing them. "Could be Z, not finding anything different where I was scanning." He banked slightly to look out at the forest spread out below them, just seeing miles and miles of the forest. "There are some good clearings that could be built up so that's a plus."

    "Hmmm, " She responded as she scanned her screen. "There's something coming up at 2 o'clock, rocky outcrop. 10 clicks." She looked up to see, "Not visible yet."

    He looked up from the data his scans were popping up, looking out, trying to see the outcrop she spoke of. At their speed they should be reaching it in just a few seconds.

    Zara was about to slow when suddenly something slammed into her ship. “What the?” Without warning blue light began to rip across her console and shocking her hands causing her to release. “Squirt!?!? What happened.” But it was too late, behind her she could hear the screams of her droid as she realised she’d been hit by an ion cannon.

    “I’m hit!!” She called over the com, before realizing it was gone too. Every dial faded down to zero and in a panic, she turned to Tiber and held her hands up. She hoped he could see the signature blue lightning running wild over her ship.

    Tiber suddenly saw a flash and blue spark running all over Zara's X Wing. He tried the Comms, hoping but to no luck. Looking at her he mimed the bail out motion, then used his palm to act out that he'd circle and call for an emergency pickup.

    As he did his fighter lurched and he almost got a shock as his hand touched the canopy. "Crap, they got me too." He cursed as Bones shrieked. He snapped his head over to see if Z had bailed but his fighter began to nose over so he had to bail. Grabbing his rifle, he secured it just as he hit the button and he and Bones both shot into the air.

    She was giving him a thumbs up to confirm she'd bail when she saw it. He'd been hit too. They were both going down.

    The nose of her craft was lifting slightly, not what she'd expected. Zara reached behind her seat and grabbed her emergency pack, slinging it over her shoulder and giving it a thump to confirm its contents while hitting the button and holding on.

    The seat rocketed through the air and he heard Bones warbling so he sighed in relief. And then his head whipped around, desperately seeking Z in the air. A deeper sigh of relief blew out from his lungs when he saw her too, floating down. He waved to try to get her attention as the seat tried to slow his fall.

    A couple hundred meters above the trees, he unlatched from the seat, trusting that the system would work and he'd be slowed as he fell. The air rushing around him did slow, but not too much, as he fell and suddenly, he was among the branches. He hit a few as the ground approached and at the last minute he cursed as he saw rocks and brambles below him. Seconds later a whispered "Z..." escaped his lips as he passed out among the brambles, several of which pierced his flightsuit.

    She'd never done this before and had her eyes shut to cope, she was not in control, Zara didn't like not being in control. She heard the wind rushing past her and hoped that Squirt had gotten out, her mother would kill her if she lost him. Suddenly branches were scraping against her and her training had her instinctively unstrapping. The trees slowed her descent and when she hit the ground she fell forward and rolled a few times, before laying there with now open eyes staring upward. In the distance she heard an explosion, well her ship was down at least.

    A sound made her see her droid landing nearby and that was a relief. Pushing herself up and grunted as she was sure there were bruises that had yet to appear but were definitely forming. "Yeah, well that was fun. Ever done that before T?" She said as she brushed off her flight suit. She was greeted with silence. She stood and began to turn in a circle to look. "T?......Tiber?" she called out. She was greeted with silence, as even the wildlife had gone quiet.

    A thin slither of fear gripped at her heart, but she regained control. Turning she made her way over to Squirt and knew his protection protocols would have kicked in. A moment later she was rebooting him. "Come on Squirt, I need you." She continued to look around while her droid went through its start up process, she saw nothing, and had no idea which way to go. "Kriff it." She cursed, knowing the fact she'd closed her eyes had been her mistake. Squirt began to spin his dome and make panicked sounds, she bent down. "I know, I know, its ok, you’re ok, but I need your help now." she explained urgently. "I didn't see where Tiber went down, I need you to find him."

    In the distance there was a high pitched squirtle of noise. Bones had landed and was on a little rocky outcrop above Tiber. He couldn't reach the man, but he was trying to make enough noise to wake him. He heard Squirt in the distance and sent out a warbling call to him. It told the other droid where he was and that Tiber was down, unconscious, and possibly hurt.

    Squirt’s dome spun to somewhere behind her and Zara stood and looked, she couldn’t see anything. “This way?” She asked and was given an affirmative sound. She glanced back, “Can you follow, are your jets working?” A sad sound said no, but more sound gave her the impression he’d get there soon. “You’ll be fine here till you can, when you can, come find me, k?” Another affirmative sound.

    Bending down she ripped off her helmet and slipped the bag off, opening it. She pulled out her blaster and put it on her hip, then tied the leg strap. Standing she slung the bag over her shoulder again and started moving in the direction Squirt had indicated. “I have my commlink if I get off course!” She called back, before changing the frequency. “T?” She asked but was greeted with silence. This wasn’t good.

    There was a lot of underbrush but she pushed through, wincing as some of the branches cut at her unprotected lekku. She now knew why others wrapped theirs, she took note and knew this was the last time she went out with them wrapped. Trying the comm again and greeted once again with silence she began to increase her pace when through a thick series of ground plants, she saw him. She surged forward, removing her bag as she went. “T!?!” She stopped suddenly; he was laying on something that looked like it was a plant of torture.

    “KRIFF.” She spat, as she scanned the area for something, anything. Then she saw it, a large piece of bark that had shed off a nearby tree. Moving fast she grabbed it in her gloved hands and dragged it over. Standing it up she was able to lay it over the plant and crawl to him. She ripped her gloves off and undid his helmet. “Hey, you in there?” She asked, trying not to show the fear of him not being there show.

    Tiber's head swam, he knew he'd just been flying but now found himself in a field, relaxing with Zara, staring up at the clouds. Something seemed off but he couldn't put his fingers on it.

    Slowly the sound of Bones began to penetrate the dream but it still wasn't enough to wake him. And then it felt like his head was moving and Z, not the one lying next to him in the field but her, was calling to him.

    A low, long groan was the first thing he uttered. His eyes slowly opened, unfocused at first, then snapped to clarity, focusing on her. A weak "Z" escaped his lips and he tried to push himself up before the pain truly set in but he didn't get far.

    Relief washed over her but she tried to keep it light. "Enjoy your sleep?" She asked, reaching back to drag her bag up. "Time to get up flyboy."

    He winced, moving his hands to where it felt like there weren't any thorns, pushing himself up. The act made him gasp as the bush moved with him, several of the thorns had embedded in his back and shoulders.

    He reached up, a pained expression on his face, and began to pull them loose. And then he saw the cuts to her lekku, "Oh...Z, you're hurt." He reached out, or tried to, to press his palm to her lekku but found he couldn't fully extend his arm, the thorns causing more pain when he did. "Ouch!"

    "Sheesh." She sighed and helped him get his helmet off. "Let's get you out of this mess before you start getting all chivalrous on me." She got to her knees to offer support and as she did, she was able to see blood seeping through his flight suit. "You know, orange and red don't mix."

    He chuckled, coughing and wincing slightly when he did so. "Can't help it, Z. But yeah, they don't." He reached up, trying to help her get the remaining thorns out. A sigh followed, then he went to get up further. Pausing, a deep red flush spread over his face, "Frack, ummm, uhhh, damnit, ummm, just a sec." he muttered, trying not to tell her what it was. Reaching behind he started trying to remove the thorns that had pierced the backside of his suit.

    Zara tried not to laugh, but failed miserably. “Oh the jokes that will come from this, wait till the others hear!” She leaned over and began to help, carefully removing the thorns. “I guess asking you to ‘take a seat’ will be out of the question.”

    "Ha ha ha, funny. Ouch!" he yelped as a particularly long one came free. And then he was loose of the bush, crawling alongside her onto the board. When they got out of the bush he collapsed against a tree before yelping as his butt touched the ground and rolled slightly to his side. "Yes, there's going to be a lot of teasing when we get back, when you tell this story." he admitted. Looking back at her lekku, "Still, you better not use up all the kit on me, need to bandage those too."

    He unzipped the front of the flight suit, wincing a bit, pulled his arms from the sleeves, then pulled it down to just under his hips which drew another blush from him. He couldn't see but did feel the blood that was already drying on his back.

    Zara tried not to react; it was a mess. "I'd like to say this will hurt me more than you, but I can't." She confessed as she began to dab the wounds, wiping blood away as she went. Some of the wounds were deep and concerned her. Her medkit was not equipped for this much damage. "I'm going to do my best, but ....." she couldn't finish her sentence.

    He turned his head, trying to look but there was no way he could see but even the pain of doing so told him she was right. "Whatever you can do, thank you, Z." he gasped out, trying not to flinch as she cleaned his wounds. He tried to focus on the droids to distract him, "Is Squirt ok? Bones looks ok but hasn't told me yet."

    She glanced up. “You tell me, never learned to speak droid.” She tossed the used cloth aside and pulled a second out and continued her work. “He’s got some scratches on his dome, mum will be pissed, that purple is hard to get, so she said.” She was trying to make conversation to distract him and herself a little as she reached his buttocks. She began to dab and her appreciation escaped. “Nice.” She felt her cheeks flushing but she smirked.

    He blushed again, trying not to clench as she cleaned the blood and sap from the thorns from his butt. He looked up slightly at Bones. "You ok, buddy?" he asked. A series of beeps, wails, and other droid noises came from his little astromech. "And what about Squirt?" Another series of noises and he nodded. "Ummm, glad you like." he said softly to Zara. Clearing his throat, changing the subject before he made a comment about how lovely hers was, "Bones got banged up a bit but is otherwise ok. Squirt has a couple issues but Bones may be able to fix them once we find a spot to camp until we get rescued."

    "Good to hear." she pulled out a couple stick on Bacta pads and chose the two biggest cuts to cover with them. "Best I can do." She wasn't happy but her resources were limited. "Come on, pull it up." She said, “before I slap it." she added, "and that won't go down well."

    He chuckled again, sure the flush had spread down his chest but worked his way back into the suit, zipping it back up. Turning to face her, hiding the wince the movement brought, he reached into the pack, looking for some bandages, at least, and some antiseptic pads. "Your turn. I know what you said, but I'm not going anywhere until I can, at least, clean those cuts."

    She put her hand on top of his. "I said no, don't push me." She warned as she shot him a look of determination.

    She pulled free. "I think you need more help than me, quit the macho act, it’s bugging me." She said, scooping up the bag and stuffing things back in. "Come here and lean on me," she looked up, "And ask them if there is water nearby, as I saw it on my screens just before we were hit. Speaking of such, who hit us, there's nothing here!" She slipped her arm around his waist, trying to avoid wounds.

    Another sigh, he wasn't trying to be macho, he just cared and perhaps he was straying too close to that line they had agreed not to cross so he had to listen when she said so.

    He looked back at Bones, "Hey buddy, which way to the water?" Instead of answering, the little mech turned and began trundling down the rocks, Squirt following him, then past them and along what seemed an open space between some of the trees.

    He thought about what she'd asked but didn't recall seeing anything either. He moved close to her and let her help him along as they began to follow the droids.

    “That way?” She didn’t wait for an answer, “We need to get clear of our crash site, we have no idea who or what is out there, and we need to get clear. I guess we can assume we have nothing left to fly.” She guided him, noting a limp. “Come on you, I need to find somewhere to camp so I can build a shelter and get this romantic interlude underway.”

    He chuckled but stayed close, as well as possible. "Yeah, Bones is leading us to the water. And I do agree, better to be away from the crashes before our attackers show up looking for the pilots." He favored one leg, but still pushed himself to stay with her, as they walked.

    They’d been walking for over an hour, it was slow going and she wasn’t going to blame him, but he was slowing, sweating and gone quiet. The droids were working spurts, taking turns to jump forward 50 meters each so as to reserve power. She’d tried to keep things light, talking about the candle lit dinner she’d prepare once the palace was built and the servants were dismissed, but it wasn’t working anymore. Finally, they reached the steam, and that’s all it was, a stream. She helped him down, “You stay here, going to fill the canteens.”

    He leaned against her, breathing getting heavier. He tried to concentrate on her voice and it helped to a degree. His heart was pounding; he thought he could hear it in his ears. His smile was as much a grimace as he listened, loving what he heard but was having trouble just keeping one foot in front of the other so couldn't reply.

    When they got to the stream, he moved with her as she helped him to the ground. The stop, even though it wasn't sudden, was the last straw, of sorts. His vision began to blacken as he saw her move off to the stream and by the time she returned to give him a drink he didn't hear, stretched out, one hand toward her, where he'd passed out, again.

    Using the lid testing kit, she made sure the water was safe before filling the two flattened canteens up she stood up. “Here, have something to drink.” She offered concentrating on putting the sipping lids on as she turned. Zara smiled briefly as she popped the drinking lid open, then she looked over and started to speak. “This should make…………….” It took mere milliseconds for her to take in the image of him sprawled out on the ground. “Tiber!!!” She cried as she closed the distance. Skidding to her knees beside him she felt his head, it was burning up and his breathing labored, but he was breathing.

    With one of the canteens, she splashed water on his face, but there was no reaction. “Come on, wake up T, I can’t do this alone!” She urged as she gently tapped his cheek. He was out cold and a quick look up told her it was going to be dark soon. “Kriff it!!” She muttered as she ripped her bag open, silently thanking her mother for the advice on the bag. Her mother had crashed on a jungle planet and said her survival kit was sorely lacking. Zara remembered that and her kit was well equipped.

    She pulled out the smallest tent in a dark green and began to build it. Two crossing struts with a 1 x 1.5m tent under it, only took about 5 minutes to assemble while she checked on him constantly. Once built she put it in between two large bushes and unzipped it. She had to get him inside so she could look at his wounds and figure out what was wrong. Had he hurt himself worse falling? Was he bleeding internally? Had infection set in? If so, that was really fast! Maybe the plant had been poisoned?

    Rolling him to his stomach, she grabbed his hands and dragged him to the tent. He wasn’t overly heavy, well as much as any man, but she was exhausted already. The jungle heat had been oppressive and supporting him had been hard work. It took her a good ten minutes but she finally got him inside the small tent, where, laying him on his side, she proceeded to undo his flight suit again and carefully pull it down. Once a little below his waist she rolled him to his stomach to inspect the wounds. Putting on her tiny head light she was able to see better.


    Some of them were yellowing and others were oozing something puss looking. Another curse escaped her lips as she rummaged in the bag again. Finding the fold-able bowl and then cutting off some of the bandages with her pocket knife she filled the bowl and began to bathe the wounds. It was probably good he was passed out; this would hurt. She needed to talk. “Ok, you can’t do this to me, do you hear? Are these infections or have you been poisoned? Wish I knew. I have something for an infection, but I don’t know if I should use it. What if it makes this worse?” She dabbed at the wounds on his buttocks.

    “What am I talking about? How could this be worse?” She asked, wiping some yellow looking ooze away, “Your perfect butt is going to be ruined if I can’t fix this!” She attempted to joke as she opened the bag again, the small med bag was on top still. Opening it she found the shot; it was primitive compared to the modern way of administering such things but she knew it would work.

    Tiber shivered and moved slightly as Zara administered to his wounds. Sighing sounds came from his mouth as she cared for him. It took time but occasionally one or two were intelligible, "Z, sorry Z." he mumbled. He shifted and his eyes opened, but there was little in them, they gazed almost listlessly. He tried to push himself up as his eyes focused slightly. "I'm burning up, Z, think the plant..." before his arms gave out and he fell to the floor of the little tent again.

    “Will you quit it, lay down!” She snapped, turning to him, “This is going to hurt you more than it hurts me.” She turned and took the lid off the needle. “This is a broad-spectrum antibiotic and immune booster; I only hope your system is as close to human as you say.” She bit her lip and checked there was no air in the injection, before turning it downward and plunging it into a fleshy yet un wounded part of his buttocks.

    He groaned as the needle went in but otherwise lay still. He wasn't going to argue with Z, even that little effort to try to get up felt like too much. Turning his head so he could see her behind him, "Than..thank you...Z." he whispered.

    "Just hush up and rest." She picked up a canteen, "here, drink something."

    Helping him to sip the water she could feel his temperature, she had to bring it down. "Stay here, no wandering about the mansion!" Leaving the tent, she could see the sun was gone and it was pretty dark. The other moons reflected in the sky but gave little natural light. Moving to the steam she crouched and began to soak the two rolls of bandages in the icy water. The air temperature had dropped and she knew she had to let him get cold.

    The water helped with his parched throat, but he didn't drink too much just in case. A light chuckle followed her out of the tent. The cooler air began to penetrate the tent but with his fever he didn't notice at first.

    Re-entering, she got out her pocket knife again, “Stay still, going to try and bring your temperature down.” Cutting the wet bandages into strips, she lay them over his body. “I hope this helps. You just need to rest, and stop trying to move, will you, there’s not as much room in here as you seem to think.” She figured she'd periodically add cold water and with the cool of the night, it should help.

    He hissed and tried hard not to move as the cold bandages were pressed against his body, "Ahhh, Z, that's cold...!" he moaned, the muscles of his back squirming involuntarily. He didn't want to knock into her so he tried to will his body into stillness. Goosebumps broke out across his back, then faded quickly as the body warmth sucked in the cold and began to warm the wet cloth.

    She could see it was difficult for him, so decided to not change or move them for a bit. "It's meant to be cold." She stated, picking up the remainder of the wet cloth. "I'm just going to clean myself up here." Pulling each lekku forward she began to bathe the cold wet cloth over the length slowly to remove the dirt and dried blood, gently moving her hands and wincing from time to time as the scabs were removed from the cuts.

    It was obvious to her that he was glad she was taking care of her wounds too. One hand flopped across the floor, until he could reach and, on her knee, not above, patted her gently. The cool air and the bandages made the fever drop some and his eyes closed, hand slipping from her knee to the floor of the tent, as he drifted to sleep for a few moments.

    Once done she noted he was finally sleeping, she hoped the medication was working. She smiled at his hand and thought it cute. Packing up her kit having treated her minor wounds, she put the bag at the top of the tent above her head as she lay down on her stomach. She'd eat later, right now she was exhausted.

    Several hours passed with Tiber mostly still. From time to time he moaned as the fever went down slightly and the medicine went to work. Finally, he shot up to a seated position, eyes wide, red rimmed, and began talking. "Z...Z, you need to keep going...I'll just hold you back. You need to survive." He kept babbling the same over and over.

    Zara woke with a start, her eyes wide and spun to sit up with her blaster in her hand. It took her a couple of seconds to register what was happening. “What the frak are you on about?” She snapped, lowering her weapon. “Lay back down, you’re going to attract attention, probably unwanted!” She hissed in the darkness. She’d set both the droids hidden in the bushes to scan for anyone and her commlink had been set to vibrate, but so far nothing of interest, but if he didn’t shut up….

    His eyes, wild, slightly unfocused, turned toward her, "No, Z, you need to save yourself. I can feel it, feel whatever it was that fracking bush injected me with, moving inside. Not sure I'll make it, Z. Can't hold you back..." he trailed off.

    Zara rolled her eyes. “Will you shut the frak up. I ain’t going anywhere, and you can either lead whatever it out there to us with your ramblings or shut up and go back to sleep! You need to rest so you can heal. You said yourself your race heal fast, so kriffin’ show me!” She pushed at his shoulder.

    He rolled to his side as she pushed him, but kept on in a whisper, "Promise me Z, save yourself. I'm trying but I don't want you hurt because of me, you mean too much..."

    “And what good am I without you?” She asked, pushing him more to lay down. “I’ll just wander through the jungle till something eats me. Sounds like an excellent plan. Stop being so stubborn, do as I say, I'm in control here and you know how much I like that."

    A dry chuckle, "You're tough," he protested weakly as she pushed him down, "I know you'd kick the jungle's butt." He was trying to get her to see she needed to save herself, even as his body started to pull him back toward sleep. "That's something I about you..."

    She caught that, she caught him almost saying it. “I’ll make you a deal, listening?”

    She shot him a lopsided smile. "A deal." She began to pour ice water on his back again and spoke as she did so. "You get better, you beat this and ..." She paused as she poured more water on him. "I will come to your bed........willingly."

    He winced at the ice water. And then his head began to shake negatively, ", Z, no, I'm not putting payment on you, on that. When, if, we do, I want it to be because we both want it, not because you owe me, you're worth so much more than that..."

    She leaned close to his ear and whispered. “That’s the thing, I want it………and if call me Z when it happens, I will use my blaster and put a hole in you.” She then gently kissed his cheek. “Balls in your court.”

    He shivered at the whisper, "As you wish, Zara." he whispered, "I'll rest, try to. But," he put his hand on her arm, "You never think, believe, please don't, that that is all I want..." he trailed off again as his eyes shut.

    She sat up and watched him go back to sleep before gently running her fingers through his hair. "I don't."

    TAG @Sinrebirth
    Sinrebirth and darthbernael like this.
  20. darthbernael

    darthbernael EU Community Mod, House was on fire, didn't do it star 4 Staff Member Moderator

    Apr 15, 2019
    IC Zara and Tiber and Poe
    Recon gone ‘wrong’ Part 2

    The night passed, Tiber's groans and squirming lessening as the night went on. By the time dawn came he was sleeping calmly. He slept a couple hours more before he shifted, a long breath escaping him as he sat up slowly.

    His eyes were clear as he did, peering at her. "Did you sleep, Zara?" he asked quietly.

    "Hmmm." She responded sleepily before lazily opening her eyes. "You sound much better, look better too."

    He twisted from side to side. There was still some stiffness and tightness but overall, he did feel better. "I do feel better. Sorry if I was a pain, last night."

    She smiled as she rolled to her side and began to stretch. "Eh, gave me a chance to bully you." She quipped as she rolled to her back and arched it to stretch..

    The tent was small enough he couldn't help but watch as she did so. A small smile started and then a memory, one he wasn't sure was true, floated through his mind. He just didn't know how to broach the subject without sounding like he wanted whatever the memory said, but his expression turned a little confused.

    Once done stretching she propped herself up on her elbows. "So..........a deal a deal, right?" She asked, propping her head to the side.

    "So...that was a real memory..." he muttered. He looked down at where she lay. "You know I was delirious last night..." He paused a pained expression telling how he wanted what they'd said but was concerned for her. "I don’t want you to feel bound by something I said in that condition."

    "How good’s your memory? Pretty sure I made myself clear." She drawled.

    He chuckled, "It's a little fuzzy, more an impression of what happened. But I do recall you being intent on what we talked about." he admitted.

    "Intent............yeah, that's it. Seems you were right about one thing."

    His head cocked to the side for a moment, "What was I right about?"

    "Your healing abilities, what you went through would have killed" She explained. "Are your wounds healed?"

    He reached behind himself, touching the wounds. "They're healing, feel most of the way along. And that healing can be a curse too. I'm glad I didn't break anything. If it wasn't set right a break would heal the position it was in "

    Another soft smile. "That would be," she bent one leg up, planting the foot and shifting her hips. "where were we?" She bit her bottom lip.

    He gazed down at her, leaning down to his side to bring his head close to her. He moved closer, inches from her face. His eyes widened for a moment, the memory returning, eyes glancing down to the blaster by her side, chuckling before looking back up into her eyes.

    "You do remember." She cooed softly.

    He chuckled again, "Some things get stuck in the memory, I'd say. Getting threatened by a blaster is one."

    "I don't scare you do I?" She added lifting one hand and tracing down the side of his face and along his jaw with the tips of her fingers before placing two fingers on his lips.

    He kissed her fingers, his hand reaching up to cup the side of her face. "You're strong, smart, and I can't deny that you're beautiful too. Scary,'re hell on wheels with a blaster or a X Wing." he whispered.

    "Just wait............and hold on tight." She whispered before kissing him.

    Her lips touched his and whatever he would have said disappeared in the soft touch of the kiss.

    Zara was lost in her feelings, her emotions and as she allowed body to respond and arch toward him, her comlink began to vibrate. She tried to ignore it, wanted to ignore it so badly, but she'd told Squirt to only alert her if there was trouble approaching. She groaned outwardly as she pulled away.

    He felt her pull away, concern in his eyes, "Was that wrong?" he asked, not having felt the comm vibrate.

    "No......perfect, but ..." She fumbled in her pocket before pulling out her comlink, "I told Squirt to only contact me if something bad was coming."

    He let out a breath he didn't know he was holding but then his eyes widened and he looked around for his rifle.

    Zara picked up her blaster, "You stay put, still recovering and all." She almost ordered as she pushed past him to unzip the tent. Whatever was out there, she wanted to dispatch it to get back to where she was moments ago.

    He found the rifle, sitting up again, watching as she left the tent. He was worried for her but knew she'd possibly give him a flesh wound if he tried to exit the tent right now.

    Standing slowly Zara gazed around her, in shock and disbelief. "Um......T? I think you'd better get out here."

    Confused, he shuffled around to get to his feet. He had to tie his flightsuit around his waist as it was still off his upper body. That done, he grabbed his rifle again, shuffling out of the tent. Getting to his feet, "Yeah Z what is i..." he began.

    Dark skinned warrior men, dressed in loin cloths and beads, carrying spears and long bladed knives. Many had long hair pulled back hard and decorated with beads and braiding, none wore shoes and they all were smiling.

    Tiber spun around, hearing clicks and whistles as his back came into view of the warriors, trying to be sure they were surrounded. The weapons weren't directly pointed at them but for such a tribe, he was sure that could change quickly. Moving directly alongside Zara, "I wonder what they find so amusing." he whispered.

    "Maybe they are being friendly?" She countered, "they are smiling after all." The men began to make more clicking sounds and something throaty and guttural, all the while smiling. "What are they doing?"

    Tiber listened to the noises they made, trying to figure out what the tribesmen were saying, but whatever language it was he couldn't figure out what was being said. Shrugging, "No idea, Z, but they do seem friendly."

    "Yeah, well, we're not dead, or full of holes. That's a good start." One man moved forward two steps and suddenly the others were silent. He extended his hand and made another series of sounds before ending with a smile.

    Looking over to Zara, "What do you think?" he asked before stepping forward, before the man who had approached them.

    "Shake hands?" She suggested, "maybe not shoot him?"

    Tiber slung his rifle, showing his empty hands before reaching out as she'd suggested, to shake the hand of the tribesman.

    The tribesman watched him carefully as he slung the thing he carried to his shoulder and extended his hand. Unsure of how to react to this he drew his own hand to the side before slapping the extended hand. Zara raised her eyebrows. "Low five?"

    Tiber chuckled, "Guess so." He slapped the man's hand back the same way.

    The warrior looked confused then turned to his group making odd sounds, the other looked to each other before nodding and erupting into a chorus of clicks and whistles. The man turned back and gestured for them to come with him.

    "Ok, are we good puppies, or know.....disobedient ones?" Zara asked. "Keeping in mind no one has tried to take our weapons."

    Tiber chuckled, "Who knows, neither of us can understand them and I doubt they understand us so possibly they do think us some sort of novel animal. I guess we follow them and see what they have in store." He held out a hand, hoping she'd take it as they walked.

    She looked down at his hand, “So we just go with them? They could be cannibals and this is their pick-up line!” She protested. “Not sure I want to be entre.” She took his hand and gave her head a shake. “Hell, why not, they just stole my main course….” She snorted. “can’t get any worse.”

    Tiber chuckled, "Hmmm, your main course, I like the sound of that." he joked, squeezing her hand lightly. The walk through the forest was as peaceful as could be, given that the primitives obviously knew the trails and paths that neither of them had seen.

    As they started Zara told Squirt to maintain observations on the camp and keep her informed, not that she understood him. She wanted to smirk when he squeezed her hand, but decided to maintain the sarcastic style that she was known for. What he'd seen of her was not the side most saw and she struggled with that sometimes. They'd been walking silently for about an hour, she followed behind him, he was right, the wounds were healing well.

    They walked, mostly in silence, until the unseen trail opened out onto a clearing, still hidden under the canopy of the trees, but a wide space, paths and grass everywhere, huts dotting the edges and several of the spaces in the remainder of the space. The tribesmen entered and a noise went up from those still there. Several broke off, presumably going to their families, given the affection shown when they greeted others. Tiber and Zara stayed with those that led them to the open area in the center of the clearing.

    The one who had, possibly, greeted Tiber sat on a seat, while others sat on benches on either side. He looked around then back at the tribe as he went to sit, ready to bound to his feet if he was wrong about sitting. "Guess it's time to relax a bit." he murmured to Zara.

    "Still don't like it." She hissed, "They could still eat us."

    "I don't like it either but what choice do we have here in their base?" he replied, trying to keep a smile on his face as he did.

    "Base? There's an inept description." She glanced around, some children, a group of maybe 6 or 7 were approaching them. "Don't look now, but I think we just became zoo animals."

    He chuckled, "They've probably never seen anything like either of us, I'd imagine. I do hope they just want to see that we're not food." He muttered in reply.

    "Maybe you, but I'm betting not me." She tried not to let him know that disturbed her.

    She was hiding it well but he was sure she wasn't happy about this at all. When the kids reached them, they began talking in their excited clicks and whistles. One moved behind him and was tracing around the wounds. When the child's finger touched one though, Tiber gasped and almost fell forward off of the bench. The response was almost immediate.

    The first one who had greeted them was off his feet in an instant, the other warriors likewise crowding around, looking at the wounds, one running off and coming back in a minute with an older tribesman, with bones and charms, possibly, dangling from his beard and loincloth. That one squatted over him, clicking, hooting, and whistling. Two more warriors ran off, and came back with what could only be described as a stretcher. They assisted Tiber onto it and began to carry him off, even as he protested.

    It all happened so fast, one moment the children were approaching, next Tiber was doubled over, and mere seconds later he was being taken away by what looked to be a medicine man. "Wait!!" She called but not only was she ignored, but several of the children were now clawing her. She lifted her hands up, "What's going on?" she asked, turning. It was then that one of the small girls; assuming it was by the dress it wore, grabbed one of her lekku. "YEOWWW!!" she cried out, it was painful and she spun sharply as instincts kicked in and she went to slap the child.

    Till someone grabbed her hand. Zara spun to see a woman, tall and slender, her body mostly exposed with only what Zara would have called a bikini on. She raised her eyebrow and let loose with a series of growls and clicks clearly indicating a threat of some kind. "Yeah, I'm sorry, I know, don't hit kids!" She stated as she pulled her lekku over her shoulder to her chest to hold them close. "Just leave them alone and we'll all get along just fine!"

    She looked to the direction they'd taken Tiber. "Don't suppose I could just..." She started to move but the children crowded more and the woman grabbed her arm. "Ok, I guess not then." She looked again, but could see nothing.

    Tiber heard Zara, lifting his head, even as the warriors held him on the stretcher, "Z, where are you?" he asked before the little group disappeared around a corner. They took him to a larger hut, then inside, where the more dressed up man stripped him bare, making him squawk at his nakedness, before they held him down, his front to the ground.

    He was sure Zara heard his yowls as a disgusting smelling paste was smeared on his back and backside, covering each of the wounds. Soon he began to feel slightly lightheaded, but the remaining pain was starting to fade. He still called out, hoping one of the tribesmen would understand that he wanted her by his side.

    Pushed and dragged, Zara found herself inside one of the huts in the opposite direction to the one they'd taken Tiber. "Ok, what's going on, I don't taste good you know that? Purple all the way through, get it?" She was talking to keep herself sane as she had no idea what was being said. The children were shooed out by the woman and three other women came in. Zara looked around, "Ok, we are having a party now? What if I don't want to attend."

    Without warning, they began to pull at her flight suit. "Wait! What are you doing?!!?" They continued and despite her protests and physical pushing without hurting anyone, she found herself being disrobed. "Great, I'll be naked when they roast me!!" She looked to the ceiling. "I BLAME YOU T!!!" She called out.

    In the delirium from the salve Tiber heard Zara's yell but wondered what he'd done now to upset her. It felt like he kept making mistakes just when they were close to connecting. And then his mind drifted again.

    After an hour, where the paste was scraped and new reapplied, the tribesmen and shaman poking at his back as it healed, talking in ways he didn't understand but thought was about how fast he healed, he drifted more. Another hour passed and when he woke his back was clean, a loincloth had been put on him and a black, charcoal band had been colored on each arm, around the biceps. One tribesman stood when he sat up, clicking and gesturing. He got to his feet, a little wobbly and slowly followed the man out of the hut.

    Gaining strength and stability with each step he followed the man, his cheeks pink from embarrassment at his dress, until they reached the central clearing once more. He was seated, closer to the first tribesman, the chief he guessed, than when they first arrived and he looked around for Zara, "Where is she?" he asked, miming as best he could to describe her lekku.

    Hours had passed, and Zara had protested the entire time. She now stood in the centre of the hut barely dressed. A tiny light coloured skirt that barely covered her was adorned with gold iridescent beads that hung and sparkled about her knees. Her matching top barely covered her full bust and it was also covered with sparkling beads. Similar beading gently entwined and hung from her lekku, which she was grateful they'd been overly gentle with and leather sandals were on her feet now. She felt very uncomfortable, and very undressed.

    "Ok, this is nice and all, but I feel like I'm being decorated here and I'd like my flightsuit back please?" Zara twisted her lips as she tried to cover herself and wondered what they thought of her markings, and she began to wonder what Tiber would think of them. The women continued to fuss till one of the children returned and spoke in their strange language. The woman began to 'speak' excitedly and once again the pushing/dragging sequence began and the protests started again. "WHOA!!! No way!! I am so not going out there dressed like this!! I don't care what you might have heard or read; I am not a kriffin' slave girl!!"

    Tiber sat, listening, trying to discern what was being said in the language, as activity in the village proceeded around him. He tried to find some common ground, several times facing someone that approached, pointing at himself, "Tiber, I'm Tiber." The tribesman would laugh, point at himself and make a clicking noise that sounded somewhat similar to Tiber, but with more clicks and whistles, pointing at himself. He was getting more and more annoyed that Zara was gone, 'Where have they taken her?' he thought.

    Soon enough, he was ready to get up, find his rifle again, and hunt down wherever they had taken her. The tribe otherwise seemed to just be continuing their day as though there weren't two aliens in their homes. He was feeling much better, but the squirms began as he was not one to just sit in one place for long, that and the fact that he needed to find Zara. Raising his voice, "Z, where are you? Are you ok? you have my flightsuit, I couldn't find it..."

    She heard him call out for her and she broke free for a moment. “I’m here, I’m ok, and if I had your flightsuit I’d be wearing it!!!” She called. It struck her, “Wait! What are you wearing!?!!”

    He coughed, if anything his blush deepened, "Ummm...they put me in a loincloth when they treated my back. And I woke to find that was all I had around." He thought about what she had said about his flightsuit, "Wait! What are you wearing then? Where is your flightsuit?"

    The women continue to drag and push her, "I'm not even going there!" Seconds later the women all parted to reveal Tiber standing with the men who were also parting. " no flightsuits...." she said before blinking twice and swallowing hard.

    A noise drew his attention. He realized he'd not seen the women of the village recently but now they seemed to be coming into the clearing. They were crowded around someone in the center, 'Zara!' he realized and came to his feet. Before he could take a step, the crowd parted. He found himself frozen, he'd never seen her dressed so. Taking a hesitant step forward, "Z..." he whispered. She was gorgeous, but then he shook his head, she probably felt like one of those Twi'leks that were forced into being a dancer, in that getup. He blushed again, swallowing, "Umm, I'd give you what I'm wearing to cover up some but then I'd not have any clothes."

    Zara was lost for words, not a normal thing for her, she swallowed again. "Arrrr..." Part of her wanted to say keep it, but there was a part that she thought she'd left back in the tent that had other thoughts. One of the women pushed her in a shove like way forward, she spun, "Oi!! Quit that!" She snapped, exposing her back to the group.

    Tiber took another halting step forward, the crowd swaying, clicks and whistles of speech. The women pushed Zara forward and as she turned, he saw the design drawn on her back, just above the skirt they'd dressed her in. His eyes widened and suddenly darted to the two bands around his arms, the designs were eerily similar. "Z..." he began haltingly. Swallowing, "they gave us the same art. Yours there, mine on my arms..."

    She spun back, and stared, she was confused at first before she saw his arms. "Are" she asked, walking toward him slowly. "Cause I've had mine for about 3 years." she explained. It was a surprise she'd planned to reveal it to him back in the tent. She reached him. "Are they permanent?"

    He touched the charcoal on his arms, rubbed at it and an outer layer came off. Underneath, however, it revealed that the charcoal had been placed there as a sort of balm because the designs were inked, some sort of berry he guessed, into his skin. "I didn't have these before..." he murmured. "If I could thank them for matching them to yours I would." he finished. "Yours is beautiful, Z."

    She looked down and immediately regretted it as it looked bad, so she returned her gaze to his and felt the flush of her cheeks and more. "I kinda like this look on you.......makes life easier in some respects..." She wanted to touch him, but she was more aware than ever that they were not alone.

    He smiled, beginning to step forward when he felt a shove to his healed back. It propelled him further than he intended and he found himself stopping the movement as his arms went around her. He flushed a deep red as the villagers threw up their arms and began cheering and smiling. Turning his head, he saw the chief had been the one who pushed him, a large smile on the man's face. "I'm glad you like them. They're growing on me, especially as ours match." He said as his eyes met hers.

    "Glad you're finding this so amusing......" She glanced sideways, "I hate to burst your bubble, but I think we're married now, or pretty kriffin close to it." She'd done some study in her youth as to tribal and primitive practices.

    A serious look entered his eyes, "I can only play the hand we've been dealt, Zara. And right now, we're..." he paused as he felt something touch his waist. Glancing down he saw one of the tribe winding a robe of some fiber around both his waist and Zara's. Turning his head, he saw that someone had placed a headdress on the chief's head and that he was now standing on a stump, speaking in that language Tiber was still trying to piece together. "Ummm...Z, I do think you're right."

    She looked down to both sides and glanced around her. She put her hands up as the bindings were pulled tight and they were pressed against each other, this wasn't how she had planned to be intimate with him. "Ever considered marriage? Now's the time to back out......I think you have seconds, maybe less?" Her sarcastic tone was losing her edge, and there was a part of her that was afraid of the response to her words.

    He lifted their bound hands, one touching her chin, lifting it so they could look into each other's eyes. "Do you want to marry me, Zara? Because I couldn't think of anyone else in the galaxy, I'd want to be married to than you." he said, quietly and honestly.

    She tried to smile but her lips trembled. "Are you proposing?" Her heart was pounding and suddenly their audience didn't matter.

    He could feel her heart beating like a triphammer in her chest. His eyes never left hers. "Yes, I am. Will you be my bride, Zara?" he said, just as quietly as he had said the last.

    She could hardly breathe. “I kinda hoped it’d be… know…..more romantic, and I hoped for a dress and all the drama…” she looked to his lips, before back to his eyes. “But this will do for now…..I will.”

    He smiled, "When we get back, we can do the fancy ceremony but all that matters is you and me." Before he leaned in, touching his lips to hers.

    “We can talk about that later.” She whispered. Suddenly around them there was an eruption of cheers, clicks, guttural sounds and howls. The chieftain was waving something over them both on a long stick. She smiled, “I think it’s done; you may kiss the bride.”

    He pulled her tighter against him, truly, deeply, passionately kissing her. He blushed still as the cheers continued, and then swayed as the tribe removed the cord binding their wrists, picked them both up, carrying them around the clearing.

    She was reveling in the moment, swept away and ready to surrender entirely when she was torn away from him and hoisted up. She tried desperately to hold her meagre garments in place as they moved. Clearly this was a celebration.

    As soon as the tribe placed them back on their feet, Tiber moved to her, lifting her from her feet and kissing her once more, eyes darting quickly to make sure he wasn't exposing anything as he held her.

    Zara laughed, “Best recon mission ever," wrapping her arms around his neck. “No ones ever going to believe this.”

    He chuckled, "Somehow I doubt it. But who cares." One of the tribe was gesturing and he followed, carrying her still. The man led them to a hut and when they entered it was an empty one, save a bed and a couple chairs. He turned, careful not to bump Zara into anything, to thank the man but the door was shut and the little man gone.

    She looked around. "Here, now?" she asked with a touch of concern. "I mean, I don't think this lot has any idea of the concept of privacy."

    He set her down on the bed. "Z, we don't have to do so if it worries you that they'd be waiting to know we did. I don't want you upset or concerned when we are intimate." He sat in the chair facing the bed. "I cannot deny that I desire you, but yes, our new friends are probably trying to listen. I'm guessing this is the final part of the ceremony." He was guessing, it had been so long since he'd taken even the short course in primitive tribes, in case you went down on such a planet.

    Zara sighed. "This wasn't how I pictured it....not even close." She got up and began to pace. "When I was a kid, I watched my brother's wedding, big flash thing with pomp and ceremony, fancy place and some ridiculous gown my mother would approve of and an opulent honeymoon suite." She stopped and turned to him. "Not a few scraps of fabric and beads, and a grotty hut in the jungle." She sat back down. ”I know, I know........It's not the ceremony, it's the result and outcome....I get that, and trust me I am very happy with those. It's just....." She shrugged and patted the space beside her. "Come on, let's work this out."

    Zara lay there staring into the darkness, the sun outside had long set and the soft sounds of the village could be heard. He lay behind her, his arms wrapped tightly around her and she lowered her gaze to see her lekku curled around his wrist and nestled in his cupped hand. She returned to stare into the blackness.

    Tonight, she lost something. Something she’d never get back, something she’d treasured, been proud of and held dear. It was gone forever and that realization was hard to swallow. A single tear escaped her eye and rolled away from her eye, she blinked before closing her eyes, another tear fell. She listened, his breathing was deep and even, and had been for some time. It didn’t surprise her, they’d not eaten and he’d nearly died only 14 hours earlier, everything had been a whirlwind. In that moment she decided that the loss was bearable, was worth it even.

    Her control was gone.

    When he kissed her, she had none, her heart was not hers anymore, he only had to look at her for her to know that. She now knew what his touch could do there was no chance of her ever gaining either back again. I quiet sigh of resignation escaped her lips as she whispered. “I am so in love with you Tiber Ordwgal, please don’t break me.” before falling asleep in the safety of his arms.

    In the embrace, Tiber had fallen asleep, without meaning to. His body was worn out and he'd only been able to keep going long enough to make love to her for the first time. He slept deeply, the best sleep he'd had in a very long time, because of her. Yet his pilot reflexes were still operating, if only slower due to the toll his body had taken. Swimming up from dreams, ones he wanted to talk to her about, when they were given a moment to talk, visions of the future, his mind ran through what his ears had heard.

    His eyes opened, slowly and sleepily. Leaning his head forward, he kissed the nape of her neck. Resting his head there, he caressed her lekku for a moment then whispered, slightly haltingly with the waking, "Zara Chrischa I love and only you...beyond the day we leave these mortal shells..." He snuggled closer and tried to keep his eyes open, to hold his...his mind reminded him..his wife, his Zara as he was hers.

    TAG @Sinrebirth
  21. Adalia-Durron

    Adalia-Durron WNU Mod - Always Watching..... star 10 Staff Member Manager

    Jun 3, 2003
    IC Tiber, Zara and Poe - Bones, Squirt, BB8
    Recon gone wrong Part 3

    In the encampment, the two droids were on lookout and were worried. Bones was slowly rolling back and forth from one side of the little clearing to the other, complaining to Squirt, <I can't find them. I don't even sense Tiber, or the tracker I placed on his rifle.> He whistled and tweeted to his companion.

    Squirt let out a mournful whistle. <I can't find Zara either. Her mother will have me disassembled for this!>

    <They did say they'd return but if they are gone too much longer, we won't be able to hide that they're missing, when someone comes looking for them.> Bones replied. He rolled closer to the edge of the clearing, slightly higher than where the tent was, trying to extend his range but still he couldn't sense anything.

    Another mournful moan. <I've tried sending messages, but I get nothing. > At that moment Squirt spun his dome to the opposite direction. <I am detecting a ship!>

    Bones’ dome swiveled, his sensors leaping out. <YT class, couldn't be, could it? The General himself wouldn't come for the two of them, would he? Wait...beginning to pick up a transmission...> He replied.

    <As am I.> Squirt responded in his series of unusual sounds. <I am reading the Millennium Falcon. Can I be mistaken?> the older droid asked.

    Bones scanned deeper, <It does seem to be the Falcon's code.> he whistled, listening to the transmission. <The General doesn't know they aren't here, aren't with us. So he doesn't know where they are either.>

    Squirt began to transmit a message, hoping there would a droid on board to receive it. <Squirt, Lt. Zara Chrischa's droid reporting that the two pilots you seek are MIA at this point having been taken by natives. One is injured.>

    Poe rolled his eyes as BB-8 conveyed him the update. "Well, I need to know what’s going on, so I guess we’re heading down to help." He winced. "I hope they’ve not turned this into an impromptu getaway and I’ve interrupted. Zara will eat me if so."

    BB tweeted his surprise.

    “I’m sure she won’t really.”

    Pretty sure, anyway.

    TAG @Sinrebirth
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  22. Adalia-Durron

    Adalia-Durron WNU Mod - Always Watching..... star 10 Staff Member Manager

    Jun 3, 2003
    IC Tiber, Zara and Poe - Bones, Squirt, BB8
    Recon gone wrong Part 4

    Poe made it to the makeshift camp of the droids, and he regarded the astromechs as they chattered. He knew droidspeak so it was fine, but they were so very excited. Shaking his head, he fully intended to make Tiber and Zara pay for this. "Black Squardon," he snapped, when he decided he needed to move on. "Roll out."

    The droids led the way, and he followed, almost glumly.

    Poe followed them for a time, but getting a wheeled and legged set of droids across uneven terrain turned what should have been a couple of hours into a whole day. He realised, far, far, far too late that he should have flown the Falcon to wherever, but then he wouldn't have had this wonderful forest trek, would he?

    By the time they reached the village, he was exhausted.

    "I'm a pilot, not a groundpounder," he complained about a thousand times.

    So when he reached the line of impromptu buildings, he flopped to the floor, looking at the natives.

    "I'm General Poe Dameron, looking for some strays." The droids booped and beeped and brandished flamethrowers, buzz-saws, and electrical batons.

    "Knock it out, guys," Poe barked, rolling onto his back.

    As he rolled over, he got a much better look at why the droids had gone into commando mode, a half dozen grinning natives were blocking any egress from the village. They had spears in their hands but were holding them loosely, casually. One, with a slightly fancier loincloth stepped forward. He poked the flightsuit Poe wore, with the butt of his spear, whistling, clicking, and hooting.

    The droids listening to Poe retracted their weapons but stayed close. The natives that had been standing before him assisted Poe to his feet, then guided him through the maze of huts, until they reached one. The one with the fancy loincloth led them into the building where he was standing. With the butt of his spear, he poked Poe’s flightsuit once more then slipped a cloth open. Hanging behind it were a pair of flightsuits, Black Squadron patches on them, the larger one covered in blood, the smaller with several splatters of blood on it as well.

    Poe blinked a few times.

    He wanted to be absolutely sure he was seeing what he thought he was.

    "Alright boys, these guys are hanging up bloody parts of Tiber and Zara's clothes and I want to know why."

    He took a deep breath.

    "Take them down, stun them if you can, and then we'll ask questions when they're not pointing sharp things at me."

    He grabbed the spear beneath the tip and dug it into the ground, inverting as he went.

    In the hut that the natives had left Tiber and Zara, the fruit that had been left for them was gone, they’d spent a few minutes feeding each other before the lack of real clothing began to bother them both a good deal. Tiber had found the outfit the natives had given Zara and laid it on the bed by her before finding the loincloth.

    He was settling it into place, making sure it covered everything it could cover when his head snapped up. He knew that blaring whistle. Spinning toward her,” Zara, Bones is here, no idea why but that’s his battlecry.” He hurried through getting the loincloth on, only waiting for her to finish dressing before they could race from the hut and find their droids.

    "Gods, this thing covers practically nothing." Zara protested as she attempted to make the micro-outfit conceal her vital parts. "I hope Squirt is with him!" She said finally finishing the ties. "Ok, ready as I ever will be."

    In any other circumstance it could have been comical watching the two of them trying to race across the native village while also trying not to let anything become exposed. But to Tiber and Zara it was embarrassing as they moved as quickly as they could while holding everything in place. Tiber followed the sounds of Bones wails, until they reached a hut centrally placed in the compound. Flinging open the doorway he caught sight of both Bones and Squirt, menacing a group of the natives, while getting poked with spears, Poe standing off to the side. ”Bones, Squirt, calm down, we’re here. We’re ok.” he called out to their astromechs.

    Zara stood beside him, her arm over her chest and her hand over her lower area. "Squirt!! I'm here!" She figured it was up to Tiber to deal with Bones, then her eyes caught Poe. "General?"

    The droids hesitated, and then cheered. BB-8, having already set fire to a spear pointed at him, made a noise of oops and quickly put out the flame with his extinguisher.

    Poe looked at them. “So, you’re not dead… and you’re cavorting around with not much on.” His tone was deadpan. “Nice.”

    The natives were confused, clearly, but wary too. A jabber of words assailed them.

    Tiber flushed a deep red, very obvious with the outfit that the natives had given him. ”We didn’t have much of a choice, General.” he rubbed the tattoos circling his biceps. ”Something unknown hit both our fighters, frying our electrics. We both managed to eject but my chute didn’t work as well as Zara’s and I ended up unconscious in a bed of thorns, hence all the holes in my flightsuit.” he gestured at his.

    ”She found me, helped me get free, and somehow got me to where you must have found our tent. It turned out the thorns were poisonous and I’d passed out when we got there. As far as I know, she took care of my wounds all night. When we woke in the morning, these guys were surrounding our tent and brought us here. When they saw my wounds, they did something to draw the poison out and, in the process, took my suit and gear, leaving me in this.” He looked at Zara, hoping she could elaborate some, before they told him about the ceremony.

    Zara cringed backward, her upbringing had been somewhat restricted and very morally correct, so standing there before a senior officer dressed in the briefest of garment's was nothing short of humiliating. Her cheeks burned and her lekku twitched wildly as she squirmed attempting to cover herself while Tiber spoke. When he turned to her she realised he wanted her to tell the rest of this sordid tale, so she turned to face Poe and tried to explain. "I don't know what hit us, it was like an ion cannon or something, then what he said and,...somehow, these guys decided we some kind of first I thought it was a healing thing or maybe a welcome .....but.....I think....and I could be wrong.......but I think....they..." she glanced at Tiber, "married us." Zara just wanted her flightsuit, it was so close yet somehow so far away from her and she was fighting every urge she had to run across the hut, grab it and pull it on, but somehow, she knew that might upset their current hosts. "Sir, if I could just get my flightsuit, ...I'd be really....grateful."

    “They accidentally married you,” Poe said; more deadpan. He ran a hand over his face as the droids tootled their congratulations. “Sure, why not.”

    He turned aside so they could grab their uniforms, arms folded. “So if you’re not too busy with your honeymoon, I can take you off-world?”

    Zara felt shame as she pulled the flightsuit over her skimpy outfit, "yes please, Sir." Then it occurred to her that this wasn't their fault, they hadn't planned this, last night, not so much, but up till then she had been convinced they were about to be last night’s main course. Drawing a deep breath as she zipped up her suit, she spun to face Poe. "Sir, with all due respect, none of this was our fault, in fact I was convinced we were about to be main course last night. They dragged him away half conscious and me the other way, taking my clothes. I didn't think they were going to do what they did. I fully expected to be killed in a sacrificial way and eaten...." She stopped, knowing she'd probably crossed the lines of respect, "with all due respect....Sir."

    Tiber frowned at the sour tone in Poe’s responses, ”As Zara said, with all due respect, Sir, we were shot down, picked up by these natives the next morning, and they have basically guided everything that’s happened since.” He rubbed the tattoos that they’d given him, thinking about it all. ” Admittedly, I did make sure Zara wanted what they did, when we did realize what they were doing. I didn’t want her to feel forced into anything.”

    He grabbed his flightsuit, holes, blood, and all. Roughly pulling it on, ”We were separated from our droids, our clothes, our comms. What were we to do, anger them with no weapons of our own at the time, by setting fires to get your attention? Attention we weren’t even sure was coming so soon?” annoyance in his tone.

    The one that Tiber had decided was the chief clicked and whistled, gesturing at them. Bones let him move past until the man was standing before them. He tapped his chest then tapped Tiber's, tapping Zara on one arm. Turning, he whistled at one of the warriors and the man darted from the tent. From the sounds outside it seemed the entire village had gathered outside.

    A couple minutes later the warrior returned, with the cord the chief had wound around their hands at the ceremony. He smiled broadly, holding it out to them. Tiber glanced at it, then at Poe, ”Not sure this is their only marriage tie but I think, don’t understand him but think, he’s giving us a going away present. I think he’s sure you’re taking us away. Which is true.”

    Zara watched curiously, in her mind the natives seemed to understand more than they were letting on. Stepping forward she inclined her head and bowed slightly trying to show respect to the man then gently taking the cord and backing away all the while keeping those around her in her sights, she might be doing the wrong thing. "I'm not going to pretend I understand this." She said quietly and gently.

    Poe paid absent attention, and the droids made an attempt to duplicate the language that seemed to delight the natives.

    “Comments noted, Zara,” he said with some amusement. “I expect no less of you, Tiber. I’d think you planned this if I did not know better.” He cracked a grin. “Can I look yet?”

    “I mean I can officiate an official Republic wedding with my rank of General when we get time, remember.”

    Tiber glanced at Zara, ”You’re enjoying this quite a bit, aren’t you, boss? Knowing you, you’ll wait until we get home and pull out the reg that says that whether you officiate or not we’re married, something about respecting native cultures.” He shifted closer to her, ”I do believe that, barring the surprising nature of it, we are both pleased that it happened.”

    Glancing down at Bones, ”Sorry buddy, that we had you worried, couldn’t reach you. But we’re all going home. And Zara...she’s family now, don’t forget that.”

    Poe thought about it. "I mean, sure, if you recognise it as official for you, and not accidental, then it's good enough for me."

    "I can definitely give you an early wedding gift of freedom, just after the honeymoon." He winked.

    Zara glanced at him. "I was all a bit fast and would have liked it to be more..............well just more." She shrugged. "Is what it is." She folded her arms and levelled her gaze at Poe in a silent challenge to the validity of it all but the truth was Zara was not 100% sure. She'd never say that, time would tell.

    Tiber sighed, Zara’s response confused him slightly; he knew it wasn't an extravagant affair, or planned, but still. He glanced at her for a moment, before looking to Poe, wondering what was different now from what he was sure he’d overheard last night, ”Please, just call the Falcon, so we can get home.” he said softly, suddenly ready to get back and understand why she wasn’t pleased.

    "No comms," Poe said. "We'll have to walk back. Expect the terrain to mean it takes a day to do what we could have done in a lot less time." He gave them a weary and sarcastic thumbs up.

    Zara looked to Tiber realizing she'd upset him, again. She couldn't even speak her mind without his feelings being hurt, what did he see in her if he couldn't take that. Speaking her mind was who she was, and honestly, it was a fast decision and not the wedding she'd dreamed of as a girl. She shook her head in frustration, surely, he could understand her simple statement? "Yeah, let's get back to what we call home for now. Then we can discuss this freedom General."

    Tiber looked away for a moment, he’d screwed up again. Looking back at Zara, ”I would have stopped it yesterday if you’d said it was too fast, Zara. I didn’t expect it then, even said so, but yes, we can figure it out when we get back.”

    Turning back to Poe, ”Let’s get walking, General, the camp really isn’t that far. Told you that you should be working out with us a while ago.”

    He directed Bones to take the lead and, after bowing slightly to the native’s leader, he followed the droid, headed back to the tent they had been in only a couple days before, and their ride home.

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  23. Sinrebirth

    Sinrebirth Mod-Emperor of the EUC, Lit, RPF and SWC star 9 Staff Member Manager

    Nov 15, 2004
    Months had passed, and a year after the Battle of Exegol was poised to be marked with a transmission by the Resistance, and a declaration of a new Galactic Alliance.

    The galaxies’ rebellion would be solidified into a new community, and it would be over. Connix had a speech recorded by Leia, ready to send it and galvanise the Fondorians, Corellians, Kuati, Hapans, and maybe even the Coruscanti to fight off the First Order that so desperately was trying to hold the line.

    It was a big day, and Ajan Kloss was ready for it. Tiber and Zara would be living their life, on a mission scouting Yag’Dhul, when the allotted time came to pass - Alliance Day, it was to be called.

    But the transmission was not sent.

    Indeed, the entire HoloNet was suddenly silenced.

    Nobody could talk.

    There was not a single operational relay.

    The entire galaxy had just been silenced.

    What had happened?

    What would they do, as the seconds ticked by?

    OOC: This is the Last TAG of Black Squadron. I would offer you a gap from me until 1 September 2021, when I will, with your agreement, pick up your story a decade later…