An old aquifer maybe? But the murky liquid that barely reflected the light coming from his underslung glowrod told him the real truth. The Jedi in classic form, had gone through sewage to escape from even confronting the Sith. If it had not been for his close interaction with Jaina Jade, he would have begun to question if they even existed at this point. Or if he was just chasing pale ghosts.
“Command fall in, make sure your armour is sealed.” He looked out down the distant sloshing tunnels. “No open flames. Fire only upon target acquisition with enough units to overwhelm Jedi defense.” He took the first step, and sinking up to his waist in the murk, he grinned. Thankful yet again for the issued helmets they all wore. And behind him, as the lights from each glow rod was extinguished, the command unit for darkhand, alongside a detachment of Charlie company from the second infantry battalion moved forward. A long line of seventy-odd marines, wading through the murk in a ghost hunt, for a bunch of untrained Jedi.
At least they could sanisteam their armour.
As Landgraf and Blacktorin moved beside him so that they could all easily cover the large, expanse of tunnels, he let his HUD flicker through its filters. NOD returned very little other than a low green glow, and thermal optics did little better, being that the sewage was at about body temperature. He flicked it again to the IR spectrum and clicked his rifle’s glow rod to infrared and shouldered it. It worked ok, other than the static reflections that passed beside as the IR was scattered by adverse pockets of methane. He grimaced at the thought of Jedi waiting right around the corner, but he kept the rifle up.
Now why was she here? Sharp blue eyes reflected from one of the pockets of gas and Delta almost unloaded the rifle at it. But with a blink they were gone. He checked his suit seals, fearing that he might have been exposed to mind altering gaseous fumes but found no cracks.
Landgraf yelped and looked around, her rifle tracing an unseen line of infrared light on the ceiling as she also checked her suit's seals.
But those eyes were there staring at him again.
“I’m hearing voices, commander, its really creepy like.”
Ah. He popped open the protective cover for his arm mounted datapad and clicked her face on the sheet that was displayed for his officer corps. He file flashed up in black and green on the small screen. But it his instincts were proven right on the second scroll through her information. She was Force Sensitive. He snapped the cover shut and looked back at her. “Keep your helmet on Landgraf, whatever the Jedi are doing down here, we are getting close.” She hunkered down next to an outcropping, and Delta moved to cover her. As did Blacktorin, who pulled herself up onto the outcropping itself and held out a hand to him. He took it and pulled himself up onto the duracrete partition. A tunnel of some kind perhaps? He kept his rifle towards the unknown as he adjusted his comm. He triggered his SCI, and after an excruciating minute of encryption the cool voice of the Devilfish breathed into his ear, broken by static.
“Go for Darkhand Intel.”
“Information, pin location, there is an apparition of some type in the tunnels down here. Let the Dark Lord know that we are close to something. I dont think it's the Jedi, but we may have found something better. Something uh...” He searched for the correct phrase. “...Darkside oriented? A place where the force is strong, it's effecting a lot of my men.” He would certainly not say it was effecting him. He couldn't. It would be seen as weakness. And out of all the traits a commander could have, weakness was not one.
And with that the line cut. Delta took a long breath of filtered air and was hit again by a distant voice. The voice whose laughter sounded like a waterfall of joy and he could feel a tingle of painful memory move up his spine. He took another breath and waved his hand to tell his men to move forward but when he stepped forward his step came down on something soft. He looked down, then pulled at it. Holding it up in the offered light of a glowrod.
A jedi robe?