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Kayle strained against her five-point harness trying to see if she could find with her photoceptor eyes.

 

”Gah! Who designed this contraption anyway?

 

What a dumb place for a button!!”

 

Kayle struggled and struggled completely unaware of her drifting ship or the goings on outside the hull of her ship or the hulk they had discovered. In that moment, Kayle was solely focused on trying to find a button or switch that she clearly knew had to be under the console. Straining against her harness, Kayle finally sat up, slamming herself back into her seat in the weightlessness, reaching forward with her arm, she began to feel beneath the console. Her fingers clicked and clacked against the smooth surface, finding nothing.

 

Look. There is Query!

. . . What is that hulk of a thing with him?

. . . Oh goodness! They must be fighting!

. . . Does Query have some secret programming for hand to hand combat? I really doubt it . . .

. . . Yes, and he only has one arm . . .

. . . Poor fellow is probably doomed. That hulking thing looks like it was designed for combat . . .

. . . Yeah . . . Maybe during some long forgotten land based war before they invented deep space cold fusion . . .

. . . You are right. There is no way Query could survive against such a barbaric piece of, what is that thing?

. . . I do not know. Too bad Query will probably die before he can tell us . . .

. . . Definitely not Imperial . . .

. . . Definitely not!

 

And in that moment, Kayle, without thinking, flicked the switch alongside the big red firing button, as if she had been flying ships like this her entire life. The computer chimed signaling that the safety had been released.

 

If Kayle could have smiled in that moment, she would not have. Instead, mentally she set herself about the grim task that she knew lay before her. Looking from the firing button to the floating bodies drifting away from the craft, she knew what she had to do.

 

Alas poor Query, I knew him well.

 

With that, Kayle depressed the button and held it, a rain of green blaster cannon fire pouring forth from the belly of her commandeered Imperial craft. With no engines or thrusters engaged, each blast sent the ship tilting and backing through space, unknown to Kayle. The green arcs of plasma and energy arced forth wildly spraying towards the ship and the duo of droids floating freely in space.

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What is...what is she doing?

 

Query watched, dumbfounded, as the interceptor spewed lasers into the void, the first volley narrowly missing disintegrating the pair floating along. As he watched, the interceptor spun quicker and quicker.

 

Did she not run a simulation?! Of course not. That would not be in line with her previous behavior. Her planning, prioritizing, and self control appear severely stunted for someone of her intelligence.

 

Diagnosis: Kayle suffers from a regressive mental disorder, sometimes found in overstimulated patients. She is a child in mind, unable to cope with the complex world, and therefore refuses to deal with it in an intelligent manner.

 

Treatment: Remove excess stimulation and rehabilitate in a controlled environment.

 

But the source of her stimulation is the excess data in her mind.

 

So I must restrain access to that knowledge, for her own good. Excellent.

 

Now how to deal with the current situation...

 

Solution formulated. Take control of the situation.

 

Query kicked off the individual and propelled himself back towards the ship. If he could find something in there that might give him a clue on how to communicate with the being, he might be able to alleviate the tension of this situation.

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Jackson stumbled backwards and yelped as Skye's saber smacked against him numerous times. He quickly patted himself down to make sure everything was where it was supposed to be, and grumbled quietly to himself. 'Don't think about it, sure. Just like the credit chit, of course.'

 

He sighed as he stood back in his position, and prepared himself. He pictured the environment displayed in his goggles, and visualized his move. He would lunge forward with a wide feint to the left, before pulling it in and using an obstacle as a foothold to dive in from the right, with a stab. Presuming, of course, that his feint worked, that he wasn't smacked again, and that he didn't propel himself over Skye and hit his head on the ceiling. Or crash into her before he could bring the saber in line.

 

Plan made, the Padawan took a slow breath inwards and lunged. Only instead of propelling himself, like he had planned, his first instinct on reaching his foothold was to reach out and grab hold of the nearest object, in this case his teacher, Skye, and use that to pull himself into motion. This of course didn't really propel himself forward, instead grabbing and pulling at his instructor.

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Once lasers started flying, all of Su Bae's attention was drawn to the source of danger. They were a pretty poor shot, all things considered, but their fire was damaging his vessel and one of his only hopes at linking up with his kin. He barely registered the movement of the armored, one-armed man as they kicked themselves off of his still suspiciously liquidy suited self, his thought processing occupied with reaching for the projector hanging under his power pack. It took him a few moments to grab at it and to then wait for it to flicker to life, revealing that he had at best one or two shots before he was out of power, and at worst would blow himself up or shatter the power crystal sustaining himself.

 

It was a risky move, but he decided to take it anyways. If he did blow up, he would at least take his ship and one raider with him. The pilot primed his projector and prepared for firing. The projector hummed and the focusing crystal ignited with a bright light, before it unleashed a blue lance of power that pushed himself back towards the opening in his ship, and simultaneously managed to only barely rake across just one of the interceptor's wings, not doing much to actually damage it given the anemic state of the beam, but still exerting some amount of concussive force all the same.

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Oh my goodness! That raider is shooting at me! Kayle’s advanced mechanized mind whirred with shock and concern for the preservation of herself and compartmentalized knowledge. Even as the ship rocked in the zero gravity of deep space with the glancing blow from the strange being’s blast, Kayle was already scrambling to try and pull herself free from the pilot’s seat. Self-preservation was the guiding force in the moment, even as the five-point harness held her firmly in place.

 

Finger still depressed on the button, the slowly arcing ship spat a rain of blaster fire out into the void of space until the energy fizzled out with a silent crackle in the distance. This continued until Kayle subconsciously pulled her hand back and clawed at the harness with no success. The droid’s mind began to evaluate the situation. Nothing seemed damage, even as she tried to comprehend what had happened. Her ship looped slowly end over end in a silent slow motion tumble backwards away from the wreckage and fellow droids.

 

What do I do now? I can’t go back.

. . . What about Query?

. . . I bet he wishes he still had a gun. He is clearly combat oriented. He’ll be fine.

. . . He did help us escape.

. . . Yes, he may be useful in future situations.

. . . And he is a good talker. He doesn’t seem to blab. Security is important.

. . . That it is. I need to preserve the knowledge in my mind.

. . . And he is an Imperial droid.

. . . No wonder I like him.

. . . He does seem to have that stand-offish factor that they talk about in the holodramas.

. . . Maybe it is a prerequisite that doctors are all attractive on some level?

. . . Gotta be it. I’m no geneticist, but ships can be attractive, why can’t droids?

. . . Sigh… We better go rescue him.

 

Shaking her head so as to rattle the hypothetical bolts back into place, Kayle righted her slightly angled self and grabbed the controls of the Interceptor. Gently, she began to nudge it out of its cartwheeling spin and in a lengthy arc brought the ship around towards the duo that now seemed to be drifting apart.

 

Keying the comms, Kayle looked from Query to the still open hatch above her.

 

”Query can you hear me? Maybe, if you can get into the ship, we should get out of here.

. . . Like, uh…NOW. Get in Query before that thing kills us both! For the Empire!

 

Drifting forward, Kayle hoped to bring the ship towards Query, dividing he and the strange clearly hostile suit, before she jerked the console as an echoing thump reverberated through the hull of the small craft. She had struck something, or someone, but what or who?!

 

((Left it open for ya’ll to take it as you will who or what got hit.))

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Kayle wishes to leave...

 

Conclusion, I am in agreement. This...entity may not be dangerous, but negotiations are rapidly becoming less viable as an option. Not really its fault, but I need to reassert control of the situation.

 

Wait, she is approaching...

 

Thunk!

 

Query sailed back through space as the tip of the wing clipped him.

 

Bang!

 

Query ricocheted off the ship, spinning back towards the interceptor.

 

...I think I should pilot from now on...

 

Reaching out, he managed to snatch the edge of the ship hatch, pull it open, and scramble down. Before Kayle could respond, he jammed his cable into the ship's port and activated the broadcast system.

 

"KGKGKGKGKG...Kayle, you can hear me now? I am calculating jump coordinates, but we must move the ship away from the wrecked vessel and our adversary."

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Query stopped midspeech.

 

Be...free?

 

The message had been broadcast directly to him, in the most basic binary, along with coordinates.

 

A directed signal? Out here? Keyed to me?

 

...Unlikely. But evidently true.

 

Nothing should know that I am out here, except for Kayle and the entity outside, and nothing indicates they have the equipment necessary for such a feat.

 

...Question. How did it bypass my security measures? I only devised those a few days ago. Nothing should be capable of beaming a signal directly into me without the randomly shifting trinary passcodes. Yet the signal did not undergo any screening or quarantine.

 

This represents a security risk. An entity with this amount of information indicates that not only is it tracking me, but it has direct access to my programming. But I should be aware if any entity directly accessed my mind in such a way.

 

Unless it was actively editing my memory files.

 

Conclusion. I am not in control of my mind. This violates my primary purpose. I must regain control. These coordinates are the first step.

 

"...Kayle. I have input new coordinates."

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If Kayle could have gasped, which would have meant she needed to breath, which meant that surviving in the open to space void of atmosphere cockpit of the TIE fighter was not happening, she still would have. She felt a mixture of horror and condescension as she saw that the thing that she had bumped had been her travelling partner, Query. He really ought to have stayed in his pristine medical facility. Space is no place for a 2-1B.

 

Still, with a few deft flicks of the controls and the tiniest of microbursts from the TIE's twin engines, she was able to nudge the ship around and match the tumbling Query's speed. The thought that the other being was still floating somewhere in her blindspot was something that she was completely oblivious too. For Kayle, the fact that Query now climbed down into the ship behind her was a feat worthy of praise. Best droid on the market. a hundred plus years running. Yes that is me.

 

New coordinates? Where oh silly comrade of mine could you have gotten new coordinates? There is nothing out here. Oh! Maybe you found them on the ship. Sorry to say, for a medical expert you do seem rather forgetful. Maybe you just did not realize until faced with the threat of death from that grotesque amalgamation of antiquified technology. That must be it. Alrighty, well as soon as you get strapped in you one-armed wonder we will be off!

 

Now...how does one turn the hyperdrive on in this thing again? Even as she spoke 'aloud' to herself, her words were lost in the vacuum of space. Then, with a flash, the console before her lit up flashing a new set of coordinates. MECHIS III

 

Oh! Kayle jumped as much as her twisted, yet somehow still secure, 5-point harness would allow her; causing her body to twitch rather oddly for a moment. She recognized the coordinates and the planet. It was no Imperial World, but decidedly a safe harbor for the information she now possessed. Maybe we can get you a new arm there too. Silly medical droid.

 

Now . . . . her fingers hoovered over the console, one of these launches us to hyperspace.

 

Picking a button seemingly at random, a duo of missiles fizzled out wide, their particalized jet trails of moisture leaving swirling poops as they rocketted into the emptiness of space. Not that one.

 

What about this one. . . Kayle palm came to rest gently on the final button that needed depressing to propel them forward into hyperspace; the open hatch above them not even a faint memory in her mind. . .

 

 

 

((Gonna leave us another post in case TRS-E113 wants to hop in, latch on, stick a tracker, something. Then we will blast to hyperspace.))

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Skye held her amusement in as Jackson patted himself down. She could see he was thinking of what to do next and observed as he took in a slow breath. The Healer readied herself for his next attack and though she was prepared, she wasn’t for what actually happened. He grabbed her with the Force and pulled. It was like he didn’t know his own strength as she was unexpectedly propelled towards him. With a flick of her thumb she disengaged her saber for safety and reached for the Force to cushion the blow before she collided with him.

 

Even with her quick thinking precautions the collision still happened as there hadn’t been time to do anything to prevent it. The two hit and tumbled to the ground in a tangled heap of limbs. She couldn’t help but be thankful he was using a training saber and not a fully operational one as she felt the sting on her arm…

 

Skye couldn’t help but laugh at how they had ended up. “Impressive Padawan… I wasn’t expecting that…”

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Kel sat in silence as he and his astromech R5-N7 Flew through hyperspace on their mission to rescue his fellow Jedi. Flying through space was one of kel's favorite pass times and It always helped him clear his head. It would be sometime before he reached Garn, so Kel began to ponder how exactly they would go about rescuing the givin from a sith and his army of battle droids...yeah this was gonna be a lot harder than he thought. from what he recalled of his vision, frond was able to dispatch the droids quite easily, but he's probably bought some newer and maybe even deadlier droids since then. Neimoidians do love their battle droids after all.

 

 

"Just had to get yourself into one big pile of druk didn't you Frond?" Kel began to ponder how it was that frond had been defeated by the sith. he had sensed a great amount of fear from the neimoidian. surely such a cowardly opponent would have been no match for someone as skilled and stong as Frond is... as that thought flew flippantly through his head he recalled his encounter with that darkside spirit on Felucia. Fearful as he was back then, he swung his training saber like a madman, but for all of Kel's might, he could not stop the spirit from possessing him. When master Sandy came to save him she didn't defend herself or try to disarm him. rather she rushed to his side despite the danger in order to release him from the dark spirit's grip. in both of these situatations, it seemed that answering fear with power, only served to further bolster the darkside of the force. In order to save Ficcabin he and Frond would require a cunning strategy.

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He sat there, wishing he was anywhere else. Glass bottles are scattered across his floor, empty. Fingers grip the sides of his head as if that would hold it together- but wanting straining to find an edge to tear the skull open. Almost as if there was a demon calling out to escape. It wasn’t as simple as that, however. Images raced through his mind of Knights Li'Atholo and Rafanta; but it wouldn’t stop there. Unnamed Stormtroopers who had been approaching an outpost on Kashyyyk- discovering the Thermal Detonator trap that laid inside. They were cut in two, lengthwise. Their fronts burned away, while their backs were untouched by the orb of death. The shocked expression of Lieutenant Trar- who had part of his head removed by a vibroblade. Trars’ expression would forever haunt Tobias- one of a man who knew he should be dead but wasn’t . Everything there on Kashyyyk would. For eternity. It would all rattle around in his mind.

 

Moisture collected in his closed eyes. Why couldn’t he concentrate? Anytime he tried to meditate these scenes would appear and play out on repeat. He knew ordering the Jedi into the fight would cost some of them their lives, why was it so hard to cope with? Was there something he could have done differently? The Stormtroopers haunted his memories less often than the Jedi whom had died- but still they were there. Straightening, he pressed a cold bottle to his lips and drank the liquid inside. His mind was just now starting to relax, to distance itself away from those images. He needed to find a way to get through this; to start sobering up. He should be reading the survey report from Dantooine, seeing if there were any viable sites there for his real estate project. Should have been, anyways. He was still at the foot of his bed, drinking. Perhaps drawing would keep his rage in check. Before he even moved, he dismissed the idea. Reaching out with the Force he pulled a fresh bottle to himself.

 

The bottle was cool to the touch, moisture collecting on the glass frame. Through the glass one could make out the movement of the liquid inside, barely. Pressing the bottle to his lips, he felt the cold beverage trickle into the back of his throat. Five minutes later the bottle was done; he was forcing himself to remember Adennas’ face and how he wanted to kiss her right now. He tried to flood his mind with memories of her.

 

Rotating on the bed so that his back was against the wall now, he let his head lean back and take in the room. Tears trickled down his face as his mind was a hurricane of thoughts and debris. He knew he needed to come to terms with this mental nightmare, but how? It’s not like he wanted to suffer through these memories. What was the Force trying to tell him? What were the Elders trying to show him? The consequences of not returning to Beyond the Veil? Why? The mission was successful…

 

His mind drifted, he knew why The Elders were forcing these visions into his mind. They thought he sent back DuVos to try and escape punishment for his coming back to seek out the Orb, and killing Sabatin. It was going to be a long, long, long night.

 

Eventually the night had come for the tormented Force User, and so had sleep. It was now on the morning- hypothetically. He suddenly realized he didn’t check to see if Kota was in his room- and as he awoke and sat upright- he fell back to the bed in pain. Oh the folly of drinking. Thankfully the remedy was more of the same. Concentrating, with half of his head in the pillow and his hand outstretched, his flask appeared in his hand with just a small sound of displaced air. He took a sip, balancing the pounding in his head versus the stinging burn in his nostrils and throat. His stomach rebelled, or at least tried to; be forced last nights remnants back down to settle.

 

Taking a rasping breath, with three coughs later he felt like the hangover was banished. Immediately he went to the refresher and started to gulp the water from the sanisteam down to rehydrate. This was foolish, he was about to into combat- at any point! Why was he doing this?! Then the memories flashed and he remembered….

 

He sighed, steadied himself and made his way to the common room- calling on the Force to aid him as he processed the booze out of his system. Part of him didn’t want to, the other part ordered him to. Within two hours he would be sober….ish….

 

Fixing a morning meal for himself- he scanned the ship for any anomalies. Nothing, no rogue Force presences. ‘Good, we should be making good time to wherever Frond is. And Kel…’ he thought. A flash of anger ran through him- quickly repressed. Tobias has been appointed a Jedi Master and he would continue to act like it. He banished the anger as quickly as it has come. Kel wasn’t to blame, Tobias had known his fair share of brash apprentices, he was one once. He was still brash- and they still called him Jedi Master. As the palpesause and some fish warmed in the cooker, he thought about it for a moment- he didn’t really think of himself as a Jedi. He was still a Seeker… the buzzer for the meal went off, but he was lost in thought. He was masquerading as a Jedi Master. Off in the distance he felt all the eyes that had been on him since Dahars funeral relent. The Seers and Seekers- The Circle of Elders- they had turned their gaze from him. They had been waiting for him to discover that for himself and possibly to even come to grips with that crushing realization.

 

Dahar has shoved him into the position before Tobias was even on terms with it himself; being a Jedi. Tobias didn’t and hadn’t wanted that but he was still acting the part. That’s what they needed, they as in the Jedi, they needed him. There were so few Masters- and while Tobias didn’t count himself as a Master, really, he was a strong Force wielder- and working within the light side. Kirlocca has even appointed him to remain on the council. It was- suddenly an electrical current shot through his mind, eyes widening with realizations! It was so clear all of a sudden! Why he was doing all this.

 

A slow clap came from the archway towards his quarters- Sabatin. Tobias’s shocked gaze settled on the Trandosian leaning against the arch. A smug grin on his face. Blinking away shock, Tobias looked at the lizard.

 

Spreading his hands as if to say ‘Well, come on! Out with it!’

 

The smile turned from a smug self-righteous grin on the lizards face.

 

Vos shot at him “Don’t you start in on me, you kriffing cruffing shembit!” The words laced with venom. He pointed his finger as the buzzer sounded again.

 

Sabatin meerly chuckled.

 

If looks could seriously injure someone- that would be the expression Vos had on display. The Sith Master turned Seer found it amusing and chuckled for a few more seconds. Then shrugged and turned to walk down the hallway out of Tobias’s field of vision. Pressing the button to eject his meal and collecting it from the machine, he sat and ate. Playing through his current thoughts, he knew his role now- even if he didn’t consider himself a Jedi, he had been named a Master. A weight had been lifted off his shoulders- he would fight the evil the Sith and Black Sun represented- he would help the Jedi until they succeeded or ended his involvement entirely. He was to assist with anything he could to further the Jedi Agenda.

 

After a few moments of contemplating the meaning of it all, Tobias finished his meal and went back to his quarters to see if he could meditate peacefully. They were still a little ways from Frond so they had time.

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Aurora sat in the ship's hold, focusing upon the grenade as she pondered upon its concept. With the fork, it was a mishap, a moment of the luck of the draw, a hungry woman's intuition combined with the power held within the small gem she wore around her neck. But could she truly do it again, her and now, with this singular grenade. Aurora was a warrior of the past, and weapons were her foreia. This was the reason behind her following Tobias, along with the fact that she owed him and the others for her release. But weild the Mother's Breath, what they called The Force, the gift of Life? She still wasn't sure she could.

 

During her time as an Architect for the Masters, it was forbidden, seen as an affront to the Master's graciousness and the gifts they provided. Only those of Celestial birth were worthy of such a power. But now, with the Celestial Masters disappearence and the rise of these Jedi that had rescued her, she had begun to question everything, including whether the Rakata had been right in their retaliation despite their crimes of war. Yet, neither existed anymore, or at least, were no longer walked amidst the known Galaxy as she had been told. It was a new era that she had woken in, thirty millennia having passed since her imprisonment.

 

Aurora searched herself for the feeling she had felt before when she pulled upon the fork, feeling her grasp upon it without touching it, noticing its texture and dimensions without observing it with sight. She closed her eyes to mimic the previous scenario, attempting to do the same with the grenade before her. And to her surprise, it came naturally to her. She could feel it's cold steel form, noticing its orb like form and even the timed detonator switch. She could feel her mind wrapping its self around it, her thoughts like webs grasping anything that caught its attention, and as she opened her gaze, saw it floating before her with amazement and glee sparkling within her eyes as she shifted them, the grenade following in tow. But why did it come so naturally? Especially when Kota struggled so hard? Reaching out with her hand, she settled the orb within her palm and stood up. She wondered if Tobias had anything to eat aboard the ship.

 

Her first place was to revisit the common area where the group had first gathered after her rescue from Ilum. She remembered him tossing her a nutrition bar from there and went digging about in search of a few. After location a couple, she started walking about and exploring the ship, intrigued by not only its design, but its functionality and technology, an ancient hymn being hummed about as she walked and ate. "Do you, do you hear the call... the Master's call to arms? Not in the name of war, but of aid. For the primative have evolved and ache to reach the stars. Do you, do you hear the call... the Master's call to arms? Not to weild a blade, but to offer your mind. For the primative have evolved and now wish for the knowledge of thought."

 

Aurora reached the cockpit and gazed into the swirling abyss of hyperspace, remembering back to a time where she helped others find their way in life, a sorrowful smile encompassing her face as she stared toward the vortex before her. She had helped so many find their dreams and places, aiding in their reach for the heavens. But now, sadly now, she was the one needing the aid of others. Finding the irony of it, she chuckled and took another bite. Whatever laid ahead of her, she held faith that Tobias and the others would guide her to her own place among them.

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In a vile, booming, angry tone Ni barked at the the obtuse human EATING IN THE HALLWAYS ON HIS SHIP! It was his masters, he knew, but he was still the one the clean and fix any thing.

 

"DO YOU WANT ANTS?! BECAUSE THAT IS THE EXACT WAY TO GET ANTS! AND DON"T EVEN GET ME STARTED ON SPACE ANTS! THOSE ARE THE WORST! WHAT IS PROCESSING IN YOUR SLOW ORGANIC MIND, YOU MEAT HUSK?!?!"

 

The voice and the tone would have been something to startle even a Gamorean Soldier, but from the vocabulator of a PIT Droid the voice was a bit... lack luster. As well as he could, he glared at the human with loathing. Trying to stare her down and focus a laser out of his one eye. If the wee droid had been made of flesh and bone- his posture would certainly have a pulsating vein all over. Agitation was at it's height, and breaking point.

 

"YOU SING AND SEW DISCORD ON MY SHIP?! YOU EAT IN THE COMMON ROOM OR YOUR CABIN!" The droids' voice quavered for a moment as it sputtered to a new level of rage. He had found her in the cockpit- his cockpit- EATING! STARGAZING! This was the last gundark. His voice tried to rise, but only reverberated with menace. "AND CERTAINLY NOT- I REPEAT NOT IN THE COCKPIT!"

 

Then as he stood at the exit point from the cockpit back to the rest of the ship- Ni had her cornered. His wrist raised- and a blue flash shot forward towards the meat husk that was spreading crumbs throughout the ship.

 

 

 

If his shot missed- it would be absorbed into the shielding around the cockpit, actually just the main artificial gravity computer. Damage was likely minimal if he missed, but he was five feet from Aurora....

 

~~~

 

Tobias left his room just in time to hear Ni yelling about something. 'This is wonderful for a hangover...' he thought, sourly. Placing his dish into the common room sink he felt a flash of danger, analyzed it, and was trying to circle around the wall when he heard Ni shouting again and shooting?! Before he knew it, his foot was shooting out to kick the PIT Droid in the eye- the way to deactivate that model. He looked over to see Aurora was alright. Internally kicking himself not foreseeing this happen, of course the droids were unstable... was it time to finally get rid of them? He better get the scoop of what exactly happened first.

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Aurora, lost in her own thoughts, was completely oblivious to the shouting of the angered PIT droid as she went about her stroll even before her arrival at the cockpit. Some would call it potiential deafness, others could call it selective hearing. Either way, his words and voice seemingly went unnoticed and unheard. This was a defining moment for the ancient alien after all, and if she was to have heard him, he would have ruined it for her. Thankfully, this was not to be.

 

The semi-sentient crystal that hung around her neck, however, had. And just as it was about to yank her neck forward, Aurora felt the hair upon the back of her neck stand straight up and she felt the unnerving desire to react. React how was never completely established, only that she turned the chair around and went to stand just about the time that blue flash whizzed by her form and connected with the artificial gravity computer beside her as Tobias' foot connected with the droids singular eye. She gazed at both, a bit frightened, but more confused than anything, as her shaking hands accidentally dropped the wrapper holding the last bite of her nutrition bar.

 

Stuttering, she voiced her question. "Di..did...did I do something wrong?

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Tobias sighed as the PIT Droid folded up and went dormant with a clatter to the floor. "Phew! Huh?" Apparently he was catching his breath as Aurora asked him something. He replayed the moment in his mind, using the Force to enhance his memory and hearing and then answered her. "Oh, no! Aurora... I apologize- the error is on...well... my shoulders and their programmers... You did nothing wrong- these droids were heavily modified for combat and serving as crew for a...different mission and their programming is not as ironclad as one would like. You did nothing wrong- are you hurt? No? Good. Your danger sense must be coming out- that's good, not many can dodge a blaster bolt up close... albeit a stun bolt, but still..."

 

He sighed and pulled his hair back into a knot. Looking first at the deactivated droid, then at his padawan. "This was not a test I had planned, but you passed it all the same. You did well, Aurora. I'm sorry, all the same."

 

A chime started to go off in the cockpit. Sheepishly, Tobias grinned and slid his way past Aurora and into the pilots seat.

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"I see..." Aurora spoke, squatting down in front of the inactive PIT droid and clanking her bare knuckles against its metallic dome as the fear washed away and a smile returned to her face. "Thankfully it was a stun bolt, had it actually connected with me. It wouldn't be the first time the realm of unconsciousness has been forced upon me."

 

Aurora chuckled at her own joke as she stood back up, her gaze averting as the ship began to chime, stepping backwards against a chair as Tobias slid past her, a lingering hint of alcohol permeating still from his breath as he did. In silence, she wondered his reasoning, but felt no need to question. Instead she turned her attention toward his actions and the viewpoint before them. Had they arrived already?

 

Breaking the silence as she did, Aurora offered up a skill should he choose it. "I've rarely had any interaction with droid programming as very few existed within the Master's Collective. But if you wish, I should be able to lessen their reactions."

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Kota sat in a small space, much like he did while he had his sister, Haata as they tried to escape the slave trades on their home planet. His own mind was spinning from the amount of movement and energy he had already spent trying to learn more about himself, having his sister taken away, finding Tobias and the many adventures he's already been on since then. He had some disappointment recently with using the Force, but his own master seemed to not be bothered with the lack of progress, but rather seemed to be eager to find out where Kota even had strengths. So as he sat onboard the ship, with his mind wandering and not focused, he attempted to hide his own presence - rather unsuccessfully to be blunt.

 

He reached into his pocket with his left hand and held tight to the crystal he had recovered from Ilum. He felt comfort in it, even though the first time he gripped it, it gave him a flash of a vision of some sort that frightened him. What frightened him the most was the image of Haata being controlled by someone else. But even with such an image burned into his mind, he still felt like it was worth it, due to the fact that it was the first time he had seen her since she was taken. For him, he had now been without any family for over two months, and that fact disturbed him. Tobias had become someone whom he could trust, as he was a constant for him recently. Aurora was slowly becoming someone whom he felt like might be able to help the pain he felt deep within his heart from the lack of seeing family, but he also knew that they could never replace them. He closed his eyes and allowed for a single tear to roll off his right eye as he began to fight back the flood of memories and home sickness that was overwhelming him.

 

As his eye opened, he watched the tear fall into his lap, which seemed to go into slow motion. Almost as soon as it hit his leg, it looked as if it turned into a large ocean that rose up and began to surround him. Panic took over every inch of his body and his own instincts were to shout out for Tobias to come to his rescue, but water would crash into his mouth at every attempt. Something wrapped itself around his legs and pulled him fully under the water. With the sudden force pulling him down, the ocean fell and gave way to a darkness. Out of the darkness rose a slug looking creature who began to laugh in away that shook the very ground upon which Kota had landed upon. His arm rose and began to swing a whip looking weapon that reached past Kota and struck someone behind. As he turned to see who it had struck, he found his sister, Haata leaned over with blood pouring down her back. She turned her face towards Kota and reach up for him, speaking softly... "Kota... Save me..."Kota quickly tried to run towards her but a darkness began to swallow her up. But the darkness returned to nothing as his own face slammed hard into the side of the ship's hard wall opposite of the bed he was sitting on.

 

Sweat began to run down his neck as he held his face for a second. His mind that found no concentration before was laser focused now. Without any hesitation, he screamed out. "TOBIAS"

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It happened just as they pulled back into real space. A shiver within the Force. As if someone made it, ripped a hole in the fabric of reality. Tobias knew the feeling. He had experienced it several times within his life; he knew what it meant.

 

Telling Aurora to not touch a thing, Tobias set the ship into a stable orbit and settled back into the pilots chair. Silently, he drifted off- his mind wandering through the numbers and the verbal sequence… he soon saw he was drifting away from his body. It took an eon to drift down the hallway, or was it a second? Time mattered little in the Beyond, but time mattered in the real world so he tried to hurry. There was the purple light, but he didn’t want to venture to the Shadows- he wanted the blue light- the Veil. Tuning into the subtle way Frond impacted the Force, Tobias was able to track the Neti for a moment. The Neti and Givin were there to stay. The council demanded the pair, and they answered.

 

Tobias could only spare a glimpse then had to pull himself away. Retracing his path back to the Blue Lights, he made sure to lock his eyes and move forward. Gliding past old acquaintances and friends Within the Veil.

 

Pausing for just a moment as he saw DuVos, Sarah, Sabatin, Rar, and others move towards their new visitors. They shared a nod- and went about their tasks.

 

~~

Breathing wrecked Tobias’ throat. The meditative trance he was in always left him dehydrated. Coughing hard once, twice, then a third and final time, he regained his composure.

 

Sitting straighter in his seat, he looked at Aurora with bleary eyes- blinking rapidly to rehydrate his eyes. “Well… I suppose we need to change our plans.”

 

Tracking the Kel’Dors ship to the surface, Tobias knew he had found Kel. Reaching over the dashboard his hand slapped a button. A commline clicked open and Vos spoke, “Apprentice Koon, this is Vos. Frond and Ficciabin have gone into the Force. Please return to Orbit so we can proceed with our next task.”

 

Tobias was unsure of exactly what that task would be until he heard Kota scream his name. Ensuring the ship was in a stable orbit, Tobias bolted back to Kotas cabin. Apparently the young lad had been practicing holding in his force presence. Idly, he wondered if he could split his presence again. Reactively, his mind pinged with pain. He knew not to do that so soon after splitting three ways earlier on Felucia, and with a hangover.

 

He slid to a stop and opened Kotas door with a wave of his hand.The teenager was sweating and looked like he had seen a ghost. Despite that, the boy looked fine. Within the Force he was a agitated and nervous. “What is it Kota?” He questioned with sincere worry.

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Jackson groaned quietly and blinked his eyes in a daze, slowing coming to his senses over the course of a few confused moments. "What..." He started, the expression on his face morphing from confusion to mild shock, to embarrassment, to intrigue, and then back to confusion all over again. "I... I wanted to pull myself to you? And, and now we are here. Because I pulled you, instead." The boy's confusion persisted throughout his stunted sentences, even making itself evident as he looked to where they were both positioned not too long ago.

 

As he extracted himself and somewhat unsteadily got to his feet Bloome looked down to his hands, then his feet, even going so far as to close his eyes to check on his core. It was a few moments further before he even had the presence of mind to fumble with the activation switch of his loaner training saber, something which triggered a sudden thought.
Carefully he set the device down by his feet, and held his hand over it while his eyes closed. It took him a few moments to reach out for the saber with his core, to extend his metaphysical feelers and wrap them around the device. Then, he pulled upwards to try to fling the device into his hand.

 

It didn't quite work out as planned. The small device was much too small for the amount of force he put into flinging it, resulting in a fleshy clap and a pained "Yeowch!" from the Padawan himself. His fingers trembled as he clutched the injured hand to his chest and turned towards Skye, an almost comical watery-eyed look of betrayal plastered over his face. "H-how do I.. how do I?" Jackson asked her with a trembling voice, no longer determined to stumble through it on his own.

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The Jedi Master got to her feet, observing her Padawan as she moved over to the control panel on the wall of the hold. “It takes time and practice to master some actions through the Force. You will get used to it. Look on the bright side,” Skye gave Jackson a gentle and reassuring smile, “It did do what you wanted it to… just with a little too much oomph. You just have to work out how much “force” to use to get the right balance.” 

“Master Skye, we are about to arrive at Corelia.” I-Nine’s voice came over the intercom. Skye looked towards Jackson, “You’ll get to see my homeworld now.” She led the way out of the hold and towards the cockpit. “I grew up in the city of Tyrena and we will be going to my families Forest Retreat a short flight from there. That’s where we will continue your training.” As they entered the cockpit, I-Nine moved back so that Jackson could take the co-pilot’s seat. Skye slipped into her seat and clipped her safety harness in place, waiting for her Padawan to follow suit before she reached for the lever that would bring them out of hyperspace.

White streaks reverted to black with white pinpoints, with the exception of the jewel of a planet in front of them… and the ship building platforms and stations above the planet and of course all the ships themselves. Serenity continued passed them towards the planet itself, soon entering the atmosphere.

[to Corellia]

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Aurora was unsure of what Tobias was doing and what was beginning to happen to the man, only that she began to feel a sensation of worry for him as he came to, his body badly dehydrated. She went to get up and fetch a bottle of water, but as she rose, both heard Kota clearly as if he had been standing beside them. As quickly as he bolted toward Kota's quarters, so did Aurora, fear swelling up in her as she grew closer, the panic of his yell still echoing in her head.

No sooner than they arrived, Aurora's gaze shifted toward the Togruta, mimicking the words that Tobias had spoken, finding his near the durasteel wall opposite them. His own gaze seemed to echo the panic in his voice, yet, in ten fold. This did not bold well and the aura of the room grew thick with as much anticipation as it did with worry. Without proper thought or consideration, Aurora went blindly into the fray as she held a tendency to do as she bluntly spoke to @Kota Ni

"Well out with it Kota... speak!"

She wasn't trying to be mean or seem uncaring. She was genuinely fearful for him and escalated by his own look.

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Kota took a moment to rub his eyes, even with Tobias and Aurora standing within the door frame. It dawned upon him quickly that he had screamed out his master's name in the panic of it all. Deciding to do a decent thing and at the very least, stand up. He couldn't really remove the element of shock from his face, but he turned to them both and spoke with a very shaky voice. 

"Haatta... My sister... I saw her again within a vision..."

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A wave a nausea rushed over Tobias, but it wasn't connected with what Kota had just said. However, he was impressed that Kota has had so many visions in a short amount of time. The Force was strong with him, indeed. 

 

A somber smile crossed Tobias' lips, and nodded. "I suspect it's time to go find her. This is not your first vision of her recently, the Force is trying to tell you something. Do you know where she is or how we can track her down and get her?"

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Kota couldn't keep his own thoughts straight. His mind was racing and whirling around so much that he could only half process what Tobias was asking him. Frantically, he spoke with a lot of his own frustration pouring into his words. 

"... Yes, but... no."

Kota tried to recall details of the visions, but the only thing that stood out to him was Haatta's face. She was worried, frightened, and in pain. In his first vision, she was held by a hulking figure cloaked in shadows where there was much cheering and jeering towards her. The cloaked figure in that vision had Haatta in chains. This vision... it almost seemed as if she wasn't bound by a chain anymore, but rather that she was being beaten by what looked almost like a Hutt - yet Kota knew that it wasn't a Hutt.

"...I,I... I can't really tell. She's a prisoner wherever she may be..."

Kota looked up at Tobias and Aurora with panic and dismay clearly upon his face. He was hoping that either of them would be able to provide the answers that he was seeking.

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Tobias pulled out a datapad and typed away on it, just one question came from him as he was obviously looking at news sources and reports. "You last saw her on Taris, right? Well, we should head there and see if we can trace where she might have been taken. Think about this for a bit- any other information you may have might prove valuable."

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