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Delta73

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Delta73 last won the day on March 30 2019

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About Delta73

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  • Birthday 12/26/1991

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  1. The clone commando watched as the Lord of the Sith considered him, a very dangerous place to be for someone without access to the force. All the Dark Lord need do was to reach with the force and with the delicacy of plucking a harp string, gently tear an aortic wall, or brainstem, and that would be the end of a long lived life. Was it a well lived life? Delta himself did not know. Its latter 20 years had been filled with increasing opulence until almost a point of mockery. His thoughts trayed there again, as they often had in the last few weeks since his induction into the Sith Military. Had the opulence of wealth really set him so far outside reality that he thought himself invincible and his friends mere pawns to be tossed around like so many bits of trash? To be used and thrown away? He had done the same thing but merely hours ago, risking his men for nothing more than glory. But no, that had been for a purpose. This was no adventure with various fallen Lords of the Sith to commit galactic terrorism at the cost of millions of lives. This Empire meant something different. Its inception may have been dirty, but they were going to build a new galaxy, a galaxy without terror, without the frivolous senate to hamper and harm. This Empire would be built as something new, something distinct. The foundations of the galactic order had to be ripped up before a new foundation could be built. The Black Sun, the SCORPION initiative, Red Shadow, Alderaaini Towers, all had helped destabilize the galaxy enough to shake off its chains and be rebuilt. But there was no honour there, Delta had enjoyed every minute of the debauchery, the murder, the terrorism, taking each violent act as something that could reach his buried self. To even get a hit of adrenaline. Upon the reflection of it all, the last twenty years had been a decidedly half lived life. One without a real purpose, like a deathstick addict murdering a family to get pocket credits. Except his addiction had been on a galactic scale. That hunger for death and violence, terrorism and credits, seemed to be gone now, leaving in its place and empty and embarrassed void. Perhaps his long companionship with the Mad Hutt had affected him more than he realized. But the voice of the Dark Lord cut him to the quick, pulling him out of his reflections with a solid rebuke for patronization that left Delta wondering what in the seven hells had happened and just as suddenly fearing for his life. He kept his face stern and unmoving, and gave a half bow as an answer. Giving the Lord the high road and surrendering whatever point may have been made by the statement. The Dark Lord was right of course, he had a long way to go for redeeming the mistakes of the Dark Sun. And somewhere in the back of his mind, Delta decided he would kill Zalis if he ever ran across her again. He accepted the box with a firm hand, glancing at the medal placed within before snapping the box closed and placing it under his left arm. It was a shocking reward for the so little that had been accomplished, and his heart fluttered with gratitude as he finished his bow and made a crisp salute. “Gladly My Lord. Thank you.” He spun on his heel and walked from the Dark Lords chambers feeling his heartbeat thundering at his eardrums. He finished the short walk to the barracks holding Lima One and peeked in through the doorway. Most of the men and women were passed out in their cots, and a few, likely still suffering from the Medperanazine dose, were doggedly playing pazaak with a pile of ration dessert cakes as chips. He smiled as they half rose to give him a salute before he waved them back to their seats. He needed rest and there was no need to wake up the men when they were so fried from the mission. He returned their salutes and quietly walked into the sealed officer’s quarters. He stopped in the refresher and slowly stripped his armour from his pressure suit, and placing the dusty, bloody plates into the refresher’s shower unit, allowed the water to run over them as he stripped off the undersuit and tossed it into the laundry basket. He placed the small box on the counter and then stepped into the shower. The water felt so foreign to skin that had been in armour for the last twenty or so hours, and he made sure to soap up completely, inspecting for any signs of heat or friction rash before he finished the shower. He inspected the armour plates while they and he dried in the drying unit, before he stacked them in his locker and put on a pair of grey fatigues. The only thing in the locker other than a few personal objects transferred down from his bunk on the Hellkite. He plucked up the box from the counter and walked to his room, which though it was small and spartan, was still very welcoming. He almost laughed as he saw an asleep Tares Blacktorin tucked into the bedsheets. Her tousled red hair, giving her an almost angelic appearance against the white pillows. He almost considered ordering her out, but his heart wasn't in it. So he simply lay down on the coversheet beside her. Planning to say something very scathing and hilarious if she should wake up, but before he could, he was whisked away into dreamless sleep. Well almost dreamless.
  2. Salliche Astrographical Information Region: Core Worlds Sector: Agricultural Circuit System: Salliche System Orbital Position: 4 Moons: 2 Grid Coordinates: L-11 Physical Information Class: Terrestrial AgriWorld Atmosphere: Type 1, breathable Primary Terrain: Endless expanse of food crops, farms, water aqueducts, and clustered villages Points of Interest: Capital of Netassa, Harbright Mansion Societal Information Indigenous Species: Human Immigrated Species: Humans, Verpine, AgriDroids Primary Language(s): Galactic Basic, Verpine, Binary Faction Affiliation: Neutral Defense Rating: Level 1 JediRP Canon History: One of the 18 Agriworlds run by the extensive network of the Salliche Agricultural Corporation, Salliche is the oldest operating AgriWorld in the Core Worlds. Its commanding capital of Netassa contains the corporation headquarters of the SAC and the keys to the Agricultural Circuit.
  3. The incense played across his nostrils, the thick smell of ancient myrrh turning to a sweet mulberry as it filled the room, giving it the royal and mysterious aire without the need for expensive finery. It also reflected on the Lord of the Sith in other ways, the thin tendrils of smoke played off into the arched ceiling, almost embracing the image of the Sith Lord in a white shadow. From a military or tactical standpoint Delta was impressed, with an application of the force, the incense could cause a billow of smoke in which the Lord of Assassins or his apprentices could strike from. Delta had seen such a thing before in the guise of a Darth Lucifer during one of the many times the Black Sun had fought the Sith Lords before the last battle of the Death Star. Though there the guise had ended with the not so subtle application of a blaster bolt to the forehead of a Sith Lord and the death of a half dozen Sith Lords. The Black Sun had been strong then, and Delta had fought beside the strongest. But like all things, strength faded with disuse, ignorance, and sloth. But the Dark Lord was right. The Black Sun under Zalis’ leadership had been a disaster, and Delta and his men had paid the price for her foolishness. Well, their foolishness. Delta could have spoken of course of all the victories the Sith Empire had accomplished only with the help of the Black Sun. But it was clear that the Dark Lord wished to gloat in his single victory at Dark Sun and though it caused a rush of defiance in the back of his head, Delta recognized it as his right. He let the remark slide down his throat unspoken and bowed his head. If the Dark Lord was asking for advice he would give it, it was a lesson that the GA had not learned, and the Black Sun had never had the opportunity to try. “You are the most sane of all the Dark Lords I have encountered my Lord. There have been no failures under your occupation of Onderon or the defense of your allies. Though I know we must not rest on our laurels of victory over these pathetic Mandoa’ade, I encourage you to begin the securing of the Agriworlds. Without the breadbasket worlds of Chandrila and Salliche our reign will not last and the people will starve or be moved to join this new Rebel Alliance.” He looked up, his pale blue eyes searching for the eyes of his Lord. “Give me the responsibility my Lord so that I may prove myself and my men from the disaster of Dark Sun.”
  4. The sight of the Dark Lord and his entourage of strikingly beautiful women gave Delta a pause. He let his thoughts stray from the pure majesty of it all to wonder about the origins of such women, how they came to be trusted by such a man, and whether or not his adopted daughter Telperien was among them. He could not see her small, diminutive form, but the rumours that had perveyed the Sith Military spoke greatly about her ability of jumping forms. But none of the masqueraded women even deigned to look at him and he dismissed the matter from his mind. But he noticed even then that there was a strange lack of jealousy in the back of his head as he looked at the Dark Lord. There wasn’t pity or any of those proliferous ideals, but he had no desire to sit where the man sat. Had he really outgrown the Black Sun and that opulent wealth that much in one battle? But it was true, he had found his place again, not matter how painful the battle had been. He finished his bow and inclined his head, “Your victory against the leadership of the Mandoa’ad was enough to crumble any resistance. I admire your work Lord. I am merely a captain among hundreds." He also considered the foolishness of throwing thousands of troops into battle when the simplest solution was to simply assassinate the leadership, bombard and accept surrender. They could have spared countless lives that way. But he kept his mouth firmly shut in that regard. “ I have lost many my Lord. Foremost among them, my heavy strike leader David Senvys. A human from the Taipani freeworlds, and longtime companion from my early days of the Black Sun. Alongside him I lost Lilianna Ordvine, another of my old friends. Many others were lost as well, and you will find their fifty names in my report, my Lord. All perished honourably in the attack…” He looked back up. “On the power facility under the eastern approaches, either on the landing under fire or on the assault itself. A division of Ishi-Tib marines were also lost on the attack. They died honourably and for good cause.” He remained at attention, considering listing off the fifty odd names from his datapad but decided against it. He would not complain, no matter how useless or foolish the attack had been. That was not his place, his place was to protect his men and women. That was it.
  5. “Eat while you can. Trust me.” The tremours underfoot told Delta all he needed to know about the damned planet. The ever hidden tectonic plates were still reeling from the moonfall, and microquakes were pulsing every couple minutes, causing the utensils in the mess to move on their own accord, bouncing and trembling across the low metal tables, buzzing and whirring with every aftershock. He looked at his black stimcaf that was showing the circular rings of the aftershock, receding as they were absorbed by the steadiness of his hand. He took a long gulp from the enamelized metal mug and set it down beside his plate of mass produced rations. A small part of him missed the extravagant feasts that he used to throw after such a mission while commanding the Black Sun. But he dismissed the thought just as fast. That hadn’t felt real, it hadn’t fulfilled his purpose. He had been designed to be a soldier, not some great schemer or criminal. He spat at the memory of the Black Sun. How could he have so willingly let himself be consumed by the desire for so much wealth when it never even felt good? He caught the eye of the petite redhead sitting across from him. His long time companion, Tares Blacktorin. He looked into her eyes and thought of how she had met him, or at least how he had met her. Fourteen years before,two years into a relatively uneventful career as a Red Dawn operative, then a part of the Bretchell’ subgroup that had broken off from the Black Sun proper over some formality or another, he had been dispatched on a special mission. A mission with one of his few close friends, the now deceased Crosa Hoverich, to destroy the deep black site of X1. It had been Delta’s first mass liquidation, and the thousand odd employees at the research base had died not so silent deaths. But it was those pale eyes that had looked back at him from behind a half closed door. The defiance in them had been inspiring, even in a kid. It had been the only time he had not followed orders to their exact phrase. Crosa hadn’t said a thing, and Tares had been the first in a long line of too-young recruits to the crew of the Marie. The look in her eyes now was different. It was not the stern look of a soldier that had followed him on a hundred missions, or the relaxed joy of a friend, there was something else there. Perhaps it was the runoff of the Medperanazine giving her ideas. But the look and the subtle smile on her lips was one that told a very different story. But could he really do that? His mind was made up for him however when an envoy announced himself at the table and Delta had to tear his eyes off her blood spattered, smiling face, and find himself staring at an emissary of the Dark Lord. His mouth went dry and he drained his mug until he could feel the granules of half filtered stimcaf beans touch his lips. It didn’t solve the parched throat, but it was enough so that he could at least talk, given enough effort. Tares stood too, fright showing across her pretty face. Then the rest of Lima One stood, the heels of their boots clashing together in a chorus that the new Mandalorians could not quite mimic. “The Lord Emperor calls for you Blood Prince.” That title called back a wave of memories that made the former black sun vigo shudder. Delta saluted, gestured for his men to sit, and followed the messenger from the hall. He did not look back. Only when he was out of earshot did he correct the emissary of the Dark Lord. “I no longer wear those colours sir, I am simply a Captain.” The man did not look back at him as he entered the hall, and Delta had never felt so underdressed as he did when he entered behind him. The bloodstains, dirt, grime, and sweat that covered his armour and under jumpsuit filled him with a certain degree of shame as he saluted the Dark Lord. “Your eminence, Captain Delta Seventy Three of the Special Operations Group Lima One.” Delta finished his salute and bowed. “I congratulate you on your victory Lord.”
  6. A silent click on his arm mounted Datapad and the channel setting was reset to all Lima frequency. He reached a gloved hand up to his head and made sure the earpiece was still in place, threading down the back of his neck to connect to the armour mounted comm interface. All of his squad leaders had the same in place, as did every member of the company, their comm permissions being automatically updated and upgraded by the Hellkite’s AI computer which tracked the vitals and locations of every single member of her deployed companies. “Company, reload. Prepare for next engagement.” He looked to Natha, son of Pathe, sitting five down the long line of jumpseats in the Sith Shuttle. “Stay ready son, if you are needed for an engagement, we have a supply depot up ahead that will issue you weapons. But for now, watch and learn.” All of the bare headed company members began to check their weaponry, Delta included. Reloading the rifle’s long magazine and checking the power reading on his sidearm. When he was finished, he looked up into the freckled face of Tares Blacktorin who was staring at him as she worked her fingers along her shoulder wound. “Did he make it?” She gave him a curt nod and a smile that, behind its tired expression, held a kind of love. He smiled back and gave her a sheepish grin. They had a long way to go, but for now, they were a unit. _____________ The shuttle came to a rest on its landing arms, and the remainder of company Lima One strode out into the bustle of the work of the IRS. The Imperial Reclamation Service was quickly setting up a base camp and fabrication area for housing and quarantine. Delta sighed and slung his rifle, the rest of his company doing the same. He looked back at their Mandalorian counterparts, “Come with us, it's time to debrief and get some food.” He raised his hand above his head. “Company, fall in.” And as a unit they entered the Quarantine zone.
  7. The commandos of the Lima One moved in a symphony of military precision, clearing doorways, covering and advancing in smooth back and forth lines. Moving from one cracked duracrete platform, to a covered stilted walkway to the next platform. It was hard work covering those last hundred meters. The massive Basilisks fired their cannons in a surprising shattering array, halting the progress of the commandos until heavy weaponry could be brought to bear on the large droid vehicles. A thermal seeking PLEX missile plucked one of the droids and its rider from the air with a flash of red light. The crashing sound of reverberating explosions thundering in their ears a second later. There was muffled cheering for a second as the limp body hit the side of the museum and bounced inhumanely into the vast abyss of the underlevels, spinning and cartwheeling, trailing a long stream of blood and smoke. Delta held up a gloved hand, silencing the cheering, and they advanced slowly towards the pockmarked exterior of the museum. Then the surrender order came, not from some great military action. But from the actions of a single man. A sith Lord, God Emperor, who had brought down the leadership by himself. Securing no glory for the Limas or for Delta himself. Delta could feel the rage burn at the back of his mind, the futility of it all. The worthlessness of a soldier compared to a spasted Sith lord. But his men were happy and pleased by it. He could see their shoulders heave from cries of joy and some in sadness for releasing the tension they had been under for over twenty hours. They slumped in exhausted victory. But through it all, their helmets stayed on. They would stay on until the prisoners were assembled and arrayed. With a single word from him and they reformed their companies, reshouldered their rifles and began to advance upon the Mandalorians. “Collect their weapons, separate them by sex and race, then sit them down. Take their damned helmets off.” The hundred so remaining Mandalorians, in their precious beskar'gam, or shoddy plastoid imitation of it in some cases, were so divided, and sat against the long white walls of the museum with their helmets at their feet. It was then and only then that Delta gave the orders for his own troops to take off their helmets. He twisted, pulled and placed the well worn helmet on its hook on his hip, and handed his rifle to Landgraf, who accepted its burden with some degree of reluctance. This was when the dirty work would begin. The necessary, but dirty work. He crouched in front to the first prisoner that he came across, feeling the weariness in his legs cry out in protest as he did so. The Mandalorian was a young man, barely out of his teens, with the triple hash of the Kyr'tsad Death Watch on his shoulder pauldron in bright red. The man looked up defiantly and Delta grinned widely. “Name?” “Natha son of Pathe sir.” “Good to meet you son, grab your helmet and stand by miss Blacktorin there. The short redhead. Stand at attention, tell her your name, age, and planet of birth, and wait for me to return. Got it?” Natha nodded his head and stood, taking his helmet, and walking to Tares Blacktorin, who recorded his information on her blood stained datapad. Delta looked at his men, tired and barely standing, but they looked on in cold amusement. Delta walked to the next sitting mandalorian, who bore the same marks of Kyr'tsad, but she would not meet his eyes, the shame of surrender mumbling her words as she answered his questions. “Name?” “Athena daughter of Hadriau sir.” “You will join Miss Landgraf over there, leave your helmet where it lays. Come now miss, don’t let the defeat get to you too much. Hip hop and chin up.” She went and stood, head downcast, near the black haired Landgraf, who looked back at Delta with eyes that showed no emotion at all. And it was in this way Delta divided the prisoners. The defiant and the arrogant to one side, and the defeated or crying to the other. Child soldiers though few, and mostly those that would have been on the crashed mandalorian ships, were sent to stand with the defiant soldiers who were Proud in their surrender. Delta held up his hand and the scattered squads of soldiers fell in beside him as he walked to Landgraf’s group. She strode forward, saluted and fell in line beside, the rest of the soldiers from Lima One, watching from their guardposts around the prisoners. Delta held out his hand to Landgraf who placed his rifle back into it and he checked its charge, a full fifty rounds of spin sealed tibanna gas and energy. His voice was low, but all could hear it in the still silence of the aftermath of battle. “Begin.” He brought his rifle up to bear on the mass of men and women, unarmed, in front of him. Some with tears still on their shocked faces. Those commandos beside him dropped into a crouch and as one unit, poured a relentless merciless stream of fire into the defenseless prisoners. It took seconds to finish the task, but Delta let his finger depress until the whine of the energy cartridge and lack of recoil brought his rifle down to his side. Then he turned and walked away towards the distant landing shuttles of the Sith fleet. He did not look back and he did not feel a thing. “The rest of you, fall in with my men and board the transports. You are in the Sith military now. Do not think of them. They are your past. We are your future.” ((Jax, join me on the transport and react to what you saw the company of Sith soldiers do. See if you can make several paragraphs of it.))
  8. Delta73

    Adult Life

    I joined when I was thirteen, a naive and embarrassing homeschooler who LAP took under his wing to the RP. Am I where I want to be in life? No. I am very far away from what I thought I would be some 15 years later. Some of it good, I am loving being in IT at a police department, But with no Girlfriend or Wife its a bit lonely. So its so so haha. I am so glad you are doing well Brendo. Miss you my friend.
  9. Flying debris pelted against his armour in waves, mostly small dust like particles that filled every crevasse in his suit, but some pea sized stones and then even larger chunks as well. He and his squads dodged most of the things that their HUD screamed at him to avoid, but several bits of transparisteel, shattered in some explosion or perhaps even in the original moonfall and not having been beat to dust yet, sliced deep gauges in their armour. Some men were wounded from the intermittent blasts of plastoid fragments, or duracrete chunks, but still they jogged on. The Medperanazine was having its daunting effect, slowing the desire to eat or rest, filling them with latent energy, and allowing them to run full tilt the several kilometers it took through the hellmaze Coruscant's ruins. The feeling was euphoric, the pure rush that carried the whole of the Lima One Commandos close to their objective with a certain heedlessness that upon any kind of reflection was very bad for their health. Delta knew that very well, but also knew that the only thing that mattered to the Sith and the Lords of the Triumvirate were the successes of the mission. That came first, then came the lives of those men and women he had shared the better part of a decade with. He would reflect on that, he was sure for many sleepless nights to come. “Stemmerpol report.” This was to the Medic, who nodded his helmeted head and snapped open the protective covering of his mounted datapad. He made several finger swipes then looked back at his commanding officer. “Stims come down in a little less than four hours. Then we can pass out another kit, but we are at crash time then.” “Solid copy.” Delta held up his hand and then directed his comm frequency to all of members of Lima One. “Take a moment to breathe, objective is close, beyond this block of scrapers. Keep low and together, Upon receiving fire, identify, report and engage. Understood?” The squad leaders indicated their agreement and Delta walked into what remained of the command units huddle. He saw a soldier, small, with a red dusty handprint on top of her helmet, and gave her a brief hug. Blacktorin returned it, and along with Landgraf, Katharis, and Linebris he walked the group to the edge of one of the giant empty buildings. They were his last remaining commanders from his shattered unit. The later comers had been separated by the initial drop and though having lacked positive engagement with the enemy, they bore their own wounds. Out of an initial strike group of over a hundred and twenty men, Lima One was reduced to just below sixty. All wounded to varying degrees but still very capable. Each squad was now composed of a heavy weapons specialist and three riflemen, and every several squads a medic or fire support team with their large transportable repeating rifles. Delta walked by each squad as they gathered in the darkness below one of the memorials to the old galaxy, a megalith of humanity that stretched near enough out of the heavens. Now empty of all life but a few service droids, relentlessly attempting to vacuum out all the dust. There was something symbolic there, but Delta was no great orator, nor did the men need such. His presence and sacrifice was theirs. And it was only a little longer until it was all over. He made sure every man had taken enough water, and when they had, he and they began their approach through the empty streets. Rifles up, weapons trained for the ever illusive Mandalorian. But in the back of his head, Delta knew the futility of it all. This planet was damned.
  10. Since the age of community forums is very likely near its end (Non RP) we would like to invite anyone interested to join us at our Jedi.net discord! Below is the link. https://discord.gg/Yhafpr4
  11. The frantic waving of the comms officer told Delta all he needed to know. He kicked his tired body into gear, pushing himself to make the last ten meters to the soldier without collapsing. Most of his units were still hunkered down, rifles and automatic weapons trained at the distant entrance to the power generator. Their cold faceless visors tracked his run, and he could feel their fear through the thin plates of durasteel and transparisteel. Would this be more orders to fight and die for an objective they were never going to see? Would this be the final orders telling them to get out of the hellhole of Coruscant? They couldn’t tell, but their hopes rose to a marvelous height as their commander plugged his comm cable into the backpack and listened to the broadcast. The Comm officer withdrew a durapad™ datapad from his side pack and after also plugging that into the high frequency data line showed his commander the running transmission from Hellkite. Delta cocked his head to the side and listened, paused a moment to watch the current objectives, then looked at the large swath of tired soldiers in front of him. Was this enough? Would this bring him back his glory? He activated the isolation feature on his HUD, allowing only Hellkite to hear his response. There really was not much choice. “Feed us coordinates, and transport.” He felt a pang of regret before he shoved it back down into his stomach. This would be his only chance to redeem himself, and he needed to make it good. Most of his friends were already wounded or down, and the issued helmets had just as dehumanizing effect to him as the enemy. Or maybe it was because he knew only his men could do the job. For his conscience’s sake he chose that last one and then deselected the isolation. He looked back down at the screen then killed the feed. He didn’t need to see another sith lord fight. He had seen it enough, and though he loved his Lord, he did not need to revel in the fact that he was simply fodder while the big players fought on the galactic chessboard. He handed the durapad back to the comm officer and turned to his men. He waved his arm around him and squad leaders came running. When he had a dozen soldiers gathered around from Lima One he reached up and took off his helmet. The stale air hit him first, then the smell of blown apart bodies and blood. But the gesture had the right effect, and one by one his soldiers followed suit. He looked them in their eyes, showing them his tiredness and his resolution. “We are once again called to do our duty elsewhere. One last hurrah, then we are homebound. Casualties are being flown out. New Objective is three klicks galactic north. Understood?” Sigrid Hensi, with the fierce blue hair and pale pink features of a Zeltron raised her fist in salute and question. She had been with him since right after Baspin’s fall, and had been the leader of the SOA aboard the Calpto and was currently in charge of the Anti-Vehicle attachment of Lima One. Her voice sounded parched and tired. “Men are wiped sir.” Delta nodded, his face looking even graver as he made another decision. “Squad medics pass out once dose of Medperanazine per soldier. That’ll keep us ‘til after op wrap. Understood?” She nodded, and the faces of his squad leaders looked apprehensive but agreeable. A single dose of high yield amphetamines would keep them on their toes and wipe out the exhaustion in the squads, but it also carried much more risks than most were comfortable with. Orders were orders. And so with stern looks under their ‘T’ visors, the medics issued hypos of Medperanazine as the soldiers packed up their gear for the tactical withdrawal from the caverns. As they breeched the surface Delta pressed the capsule to his neck and winced as the needle sunk home. The needle dumped three liquid ounces of concentrate into his bloodstream, and as it took hold he let the capsule drop to the dusty ground. New life sprang into his tired muscles as he placed his helmet back onto his head. He took two large breaths, letting the drug take hold, then he beckoned to his men and they ran back out into the moonfall.
  12. The firefight was intense, the sound of ordinance popping through the sound dampeners on his helmet, the recoil of the blaster rifle as it kicked against his shoulder pauldron. Three lightly armoured Ishi Tib took the brunt of the automatic fire from the thickset mandalorian, bits of plastoid, mixed with blue black blood spattered him like clods of dirt. Marking over the dark red blood of his friend, and adding another layer of grime from the hours long conflict. Delta could feel the tiredness beginning to ache at his bones and muscles. When the firing at last ceased, Delta let the rifle fall into low ready, resting his arms and relying on the sling to take the rifle’s weight. “Lima One, Hotel Two. Lima One Command. Status report.” Squad leaders sounded off as the last bit of smoke and dust in the cavernous expanse settled down into the vivid, jagged lighting of rifle mounted glowrods. Some of which were unmoving and half buried by explosive debris. Delta made sure that his comm was triggered off, before moving up to gaze at the deceased Mandalorian female that he had escorted here. She may have been pretty once. He muttered a curse and walked up to the remnants of his squad. Landgraf was applying pressure to a nasty wound on one of her commandos, and he could dimly see the bright yellow of her eyes staring at him behind her ‘T’ visor. The reality was there, this was a fruitless mission, and would take more hours to complete and many more men. Men he did not want to give up for these foolish mandalorians. He set his Jaw and nodded to her. He strode to the tunnel entrance and assessed the damage to the enemy positions and how far the enemy objective was away. Only a mere several hundred meters, but it was through more killzones, more traps, more mandalorian fools. He pointed to one of the commandos who carried a heavy pack on his back. Giving the sign for him to bring his comm pack over to him. The man saluted then dutifully turned allowing Delta access to the high power comm station that would be able to penetrate the caves twists and turns and reach the main sith command fleet. Delta pulled out the comm pin connector and its wire from his armour and plugged it into the terminal on the pack. He looked at his HUD for a second, punched in the required key command for direct access and hailed his superior officer. The comm spun for an irritating amount of time as the device attempted an encryption handshake with the comm receiver on the Victory Class Star Destroyer Hellkite. It took almost ten seconds before the three beeps of the communication array announced that the unit had made connection. “Hellkite Actual, Lima One Command.” The voice that responded was filled with static and a little hostility. “Go ahead Lima One.” His blue eyes looked at the hand signals that Landgraf was holding up. “We are experiencing higher than accounted casualties. Requesting application of heavy ordinance. Structural integrity of the target area is minimal.” Several heavy strikes of siege torpedoes or nuclear busters would finish the job with more sincerity then another whole platoon of fresh soldiers would. They could bring the whole mess of duracrete down on the heads of whatever waited for them in the power generator with just a few well applied munitions. Lima One had taken enough losses, secured the objective’s entrance and scoped the area. This would surely be enough. “Understood Lima One. Sending your request up the admiralty.” “Lima One Copies, we await your decision.” Delta unplugged his comm cable and ordered the soldier to monitor the frequency as he returned to his command frequency. They needed to secure the area and prepare for a negative answer either way. “Secure the area and prepare for another push.” He shouldered his blaster rifle again and fell in with his men as they fanned out in the cavern to find any further resistance.
  13. Delta shrugged his heavily armoured shoulders, as the woman began to talk about things she did not know. Inwardly he smiled, hidden behind his visor and helmet at her last refusal. It was pathetic really, refusing a chance at redemption with death so very near. But Delta could not find it within himself to care. Sure she was beautiful, but there was plenty of beautiful flesh available after a battle, and the Sith had the balustrades of their halls packed full with clingers on that had nothing but their flesh to offer. Delta could feel the lack of his own conscience like an empty page in a book. But it was better this way in the end. He had men to take care of and the mandalorians be damned. If they believed in Arasuum and Kad Ha’Rangir they would join them in death and entropy. For Delta had seen the real power, not in Gods of men and petty religions, but in the Spider. In a man in ascendance who had toppled empires and republics. When such a man existed, who needed gods? And that Spider demanded much, and offered his redemption freely. He had no need for other gods or morals. Strength through arms was enough for him. Mandalorians be damned. Their culture was the epitome of weakness. They had fallen apart at a death of a single woman at the hands of a Jedi Knight. A kriffing child. Delta could feel disdain take the place of pity in his mind, and a silent hatred rose in his chest. The hatred of a man looking on rats that had raided his pantry and were now stuck to the glue of traps and completely at his whim. The hatred that dehumanized, the hatred that Delta fully embraced. “Then die you fooli-” The woman fell to a crouch and Landgraf’s blaster bolt sizzled through the air above her head. The Ex BJlack Sun commando cursed and brought the stock of her rifle to her shoulder and dropped into a crouch to get a better shot on the escaping mandalorian. But it was too late. She had tackled one of the squid headed marines and pitched him into a trap. Delta held her gaze with a silent look of disgust. Watching her eyes until her body had been shredded by the explosive fury of several high yield mines. One mandalorian was down, three IShi Tibs, and now there was a hole in his forward defense those bastards would very likely exploit. “Covering fire! Prepare for assault!” There was only one reason to trigger the trap now. Landgraf’s cool voice carried with it a tremble of fear as she alerted the remaining elements of Lima One that had made it into the cave that they were about to receive some kind of attack. Half the support company had already dropped to cover at the first blaster bolt, the rest at the explosion that had taken the lives of some valiant marines. Then three positions opened up with streams of blaster fire and a few grenades. The bouncing explosives detonated in the front lines of marines and scattered them in an explosion of bright light and shredding shrapnel. Delta could feel a ping of metal off his armour as he fell prone and began to return fire. There seemed to be only three positions and their fire was meager compared to the large amount of sith troopers in the area, but it was enough to slow them down and nibble away at their lives. The bastards. Delta triggered his mic on with a press of his chin. Filling his trooper’s ears with his voice. “Marines, hold position and return fire, Lima One, ordinance on those positions.” Delta’s HUD clearly marked the positions of the three mandalorians and their bolts and fire easily marked them to those without the expensive HUD systems. Behind him two groups of Lima One were beginning their moves as the Ishi Tib poured their fire towards the positions. Clear the backblast area! The familiar call filled the interunit comms as the three separated two man squads checked the rear funnel of their HH-15 launchers and their spacing before firing a missile each at the enemy positions. One of the soldiers was hit mid firing and his missile went wild into the roof of the large expanse. But at least two were on target and the three kilogram explosive rockets would do significant damage, but the miss was followed up on by several underbarrel grenades fired by two soldiers in the ishi tib marines. As the explosions echoed throughout the caverns with blinding light, Delta stood and began his rush. “Push god damn you!” And as one, the mass of soldiers sprinted forward to exploit the work of their heavy weapon operators, to overwhelm and slaughter the few mandalorians. He stepped over the bloody carcass of the foolish girl, and led his men into the breach.
  14. Delta’s eyes narrowed as the EOD team disabled the next placed trap, holding the woman in front of him like a shield of mandalorian iron and tender flesh. Elements of Lima One and Hotel Two were advancing in behind him, taking cover before letting the next line advance, teams of four branching out to clear adjacent tunnels as they wound their way towards the power generator. When the passageways began to expand out into a vast complex, Delta motioned to his team. It was important to avoid being flanked especially while in the heart of the enemy encampment, the generator was close and so it was time to switch tactics. He let him men pass in front of him as they advanced, spreading out into fireteams to cover the vast debris filled space. He motioned to Landgraf, and the female took the captive mandalorian in tow, her blaster rifle in place at the back of the woman’s head. If ever there would be an ambush it would be here. There had been enough time to set something elaborate up even. He let the dull red glow of his ‘T’ visor survey the stubborn mandalorian as he passed the woman over. <”I am Mandalorian, you can trust or not. You die uselessly or not. You have showed little honour or desire to be redeemed. Mock as you will. You can be saved or you cannot. You and yours can attack my men, kill a few then be disgraced. I care not. Your body will remain warm enough after the blaster discharges. Salvation and honour exists, but only for the victor. You have a choice, now make it.”> He motioned to Landgraf who grinned beneath her helmet biting off a laugh at her commanding officer. She was not used to seeing him so causally cruel. But the Ishi Tib Marines were looking for spoils. The laugh was soft but vicious as the heavy support company entered the cave, their heavy weapons wishing to be used against anything but moonfall. Lima One, the Devil Hounds were finally on location and they were eager for combat. The company had sustained heavy casualties, but they were a united enough force to be effective. And the objective was very close. Delta looked back at the Mandalorian then to his advancing companies.
  15. The tunnel interior was thick with dust kicked up by recently fired munitions, traps, and the general explosive nature of coruscant itself after a moonfall. The dust made thick paste of the exposed blood that had covered Delta’s chest, covering most of the insignia that emblazoned almost every surface with the crooked spider of the God King of the Sith with thick red rust. The dust coated his faceplate and visor enough that he had to pause and pull an aide bandage from his belt pouch and thoroughly scrub over the ‘T’ visor to remove the dust as it began to seriously hinder his ability to see in the low light of the tunnels. A few of the Marines from Hotel two, keeping a judicious distance behind dimly illuminated the area in front of them with their weapon mounted lights. They pushed on a few meters until the woman froze and finally spoke. He slackened his pressure on her back and gestured behind him for one of the approaching Lima One commandos, whose voices he could hear echoing down behind him. His Mandalorian was rusty and antiquated as he responded, his voice rasping out of the mic grill of his helmet that was partially coated in the sticky paste of bloody dust. <”We come to restore order and to rebuild.”> He harkened back to the Mandalorian religion, one that had been drilled into him with prejudice by his ARC trainers. <”We cannot allow this world to lay in the arms of Arasuum. Or to lie fallow. This is the capital of the Galaxy, it should be the shining city, not a wasteland.”> He referenced the God of sloth, of whom the crusaders were very likely to despise as much as he. It was a gamble at finding rapport with the woman, but it was worth the shot. “Captain, Langraf and strike group three reporting sir.” Delta smiled as the voice boomed down the tunnel behind him. He held up a hand and pointed to the trip mine as he brought the mandalorian woman and himself backwards away from any blast as two of his soldiers went to work, checking the monofilament, then setting a directional charge against the exposed mine before retreating back behind the corner before the charge safely detonated the mine. Delta nodded his thanks to the EOD crew and began to push the woman in front of him again while his troops formed an advancing cover behind him. There were likely very many more traps ahead. <”Girl it does no one any good to die for no reason. The forces of the Sith are overwhelming, I promise there will be no reprisals if your men decided they wanted to be on the winning side.”>
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