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Delta73

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  1. The two Sith soldiers shared a side eye glance before slowly nodding. They both could feel the apprehension in the air, but knew they had to do their duty. Though how far their bonds of loyalty to Delta could be stretched to appease his newest toy they themselves did not know. But he had not steered them wrong thus far, so they would weather this storm. Or at least that's what they believed. Delta was not so sure, and apprehensively leaned against he wall, his pale blue eyes flicking from his two officers to Nyrys and back. Silently praying that they would not hate him too much for this. - Gerald Frostwin - The rush. Gods what a rush. He could almost feel the relaxing loss of control that came with the glitterstim. It wasn’t so much a stimulant now, it hadn’t been for a very long time. How old had he been when he first felt the rush? Eight? Nine? Mum had been in a good mood and had shared a little dab from the fingernail to rub on his gums. What had happened to her anyway? But his memory of her was as fleeting as the rush itself. Her memories had been trodden down like grass under the boots of a battalion. Rush after rush, and little by little her face had been swept away. Trampled under the glitterstim, pulled beneath the rushing blood in his veins. That faceless face still smiled though, its form a liquid instead of a pure and unadulterated face. Perhaps he imagined a smile, like people could see Tuk'ata in the clouds. But I gave that all up right? It didn’t matter, the rush was there, he could feel it. Or was it there? The feelings certainly were. The familiar friends of broken promises and shattered dreams were there. He could almost feel their embrace, their sorrowful nudging that he deserved this. He just needed the Rush to get through. He could always give it up another day. But I did give it up and you can’t even see the needle marks any more. I can taste the food I eat. In fact I can still taste the stimcafe from this morning. He blinked, and gasped, pushing the rush out of his mind. She was good. Damn her she was good. He forced a smile. “Almost got me there. Took me way back.” Back to better times. Where the only thing he had to worry about was where to get the next score.... - Sigrid Hensi - Spasted spiders. They even got here to the bloody new construction? Sigrid wrinkled the bridge of her nose and crushed the thing with the toe of her boot. She could feel the pop of its carcass, the rupturing of its abdomen as she pressed down, and the satisfactory splatter of blood that arced its way a few inches from the well shined toe of her issued boot. How had she gotten here, how had she become so attached to this captain? She knew that she had no romantic call, she was no beautiful Tares, or funny Haylee, and she still stood here, Alive. Through it all at least she had lived, even as everything she loved died while she screamed in useless denial. Love. Was she broken? Tares and Haylee had gone through what she had, they had all been fighting since their early teens, first in black sun then into the Sith Empire. How many years had they served together and how many of those young smiling faces were now rotting in graves on a dozen planets? How many friends had died? And how many… Loves? She had certainly loved Haylee. And So did the Captain. But she owed him more than anyone she had ever known. Memories came fast from her childhood. Remember when mom overdosed in the new home we had been given? A knife and blood on the flood of the pantry. A screaming and premature infant. A new sister. A new mouth to feed. Another child born addicted. But she had been pulled out of all that. Rescued at the end of a blaster rifle. She scratched at an itch and felt something other than her own flesh. Another spider. And in fact there were dozens of them. She flicked away another, then froze. It had been so subtle! She let the fear deescalate and then cocked a grin at the red woman. If spiders were all that she had thrown at her, she couldn't really be all that bad right? She had to get to know her. Somehow. __________________ “Get to the shuttles, line by line. Your equipment will be on the racks above your jumpseats. Get dressed into your armour, we are getting more than flighttime, prepare for close orbital insert. Solid copy?” Liam took his chalks of men and made sure they were well situated. He glanced at the newest recruit who was now seated in front of him. “Have you ever orbital inserted Twenty-Three?”
  2. Sergeant Laim leaned forward from where he was standing and brought his hand straight into the back of the Mandalorians head. Enough to make the man see stars, if his empty eyesockets could see such a thing. But it was not a challenge of some kind of honour duel; it was a cuff of reproach, fitting of a backtalking private to his sergeant. “Get in line Twenty-Three. Whoever you were before has no relevance now.” He raised his voice so that the entire Fifty-Fifth special operations could hear him. “Company, Fall In!” The first battalion began their run, a light 20 kilometer run, before they wheeled back into the Sith Barracks. It left none of them winded, but when orders finally came in the Special Operations Group would answer. “Company gather your equipment, we are going on a fast deployment, Twenty Three your equipment will be in your locker. Looks like we will be giving the Rebel Alliance a treat. Report back to the drop shuttles, ASAP.”
  3. Frostwin scowled as he jogged through the dense jungle forest outside Iziz. He could feel the familiar burn of his heavy breathing against the cool morning air, as his lungs struggled to keep up with the now nearing 20 kilometer run. His scowl was more concerning their situation of course, not his aqt his companion, the much younger Lieutenant of the Darkhand commando’s, Sigrid Hensi. “Captains fouled up again you think?” He said this at barely above a whisper, almost as if the long dead spirits of the Sith that haunted this planet would tattletail on him. Sigrid grimaced and slowed their jog into a walk as they wound their way through a stand of trees. “His love life is none of our concern, but…” But it was their concern, and it always had been. So she left the question unanswered, because it was fairly obvious to everyone in Darkhand that had been with the captain since Black Sun. The captain had fallen for another sithari sorcerer, and whenever he did that, death and destruction usually followed. Long before it had been Dathomir, then Dark Sun, and now this. And the two most loyal of Lieutenants could not but feel dread when they had received the summons to the newly built base on the outskirts of Iziz. What darkness awaited them? But they spoke nothing more and walked into the new Sith construction in their class B uniforms, slightly soaked with sweat. An odd pair, an old man and a young woman. Both representing their captain’s past and the old wounds he carried. One had been a child soldier, the other a spice ridden thug from Al-Kerra. They were reflections of their captain, more than he knew. They saluted Delta and the Sith Lord. And reported for duty. “Welcome.” Delta said, his clear blue eyes taking in their barely concealed worry. "This is Lord Nyrys, who will be conducting a brief and stimulating experiment. We have to be ready to face the Jedi and this will help prepare you."
  4. At a certain point Lieutenant Hensi realized that the Mandalorian had taken her very literally. She had more meant him to strip down to his undergarments, but she did not blame him for his interpretation. When She saw where it was going, she pointed to the barracks and Aeth ran back to her rooms. She was not a young girl, but even a girl in her late teens did not need to be exposed to every bit of a mandalorian. The rest of the soldiers looked on with little emotion, the few ex mandalorians, those that had survived the ruin of Coruscant, kept their eyes on him. There was honour here, even in the humiliation. They had all gone through it themselves. He had made the first step on a very long journey into the heart of the Sith Lords. The Lieutenant beckoned to one of the subalterns, a corporal in the grey on grey livery of the Logistics corps who stepped forward with a bundle of clothes and armour. He handed it to the naked mandalorian and stepped away. “Dress, then you will join us for the afternoon run.” She handed him a datapad. “Soldier 23-55SA. You are assigned to First Battalion, under Sergeant Liam here. Fall in when you are dressed.” And the with a ring of a bell, the battalion fell in, the special operations group soldiers making long crisp lines in their pale red class b’s. ________________________________ Delta considered a moment while he held the Sithari woman in a close hug, his clear blue eyes sliding from her new gauntlets to her beautiful face. His mind flew back to the end of the last great war, those few soldiers of the Black Sun he had chosen to elevate above their stations to be his knights errant. Those brief glimpses of smiling faces, fierce set jaws, blaster fire, and the smell of death that came to the surface of his mind caused the smile to stale on his face. Frozen in the mimicry of happiness, until the memories of those friends who now lay in their burned bones in the burned forests of dathomir, faded. To be replaced by the faces of his new soldiers, his battalion. Now bearing little resemblance to the black sunners they had once been. Many had died, too many, but their replacements had been of stronger stuff. “I have some selections, mostly my current command staff but they have survived much worse.” He kissed her firmly on her crimson forehead then took a step back to summon his command team. Lieutenants Hensi and Frostwin were called for and they would come at the run. He looked back to the Sith Lord and cocked a smile across his face. This was not a mocking smile, but one of actual pleasure. He reached for his helmet. “But perhaps you could test me as well? I would love to see what you are capable of…”
  5. Liam let a soft smile creep across his face. A face that had been beaten into a ruin and repaired far before its time. The smile caught the long line of scar tissue that traced from one corner of his mouth as his eyes looked at the back of his Lieutenants neck. He knew her smile was matching his, though her face had not seen the doom of coruscant in quite the same way his had. She had been there with their commanding officer, hunting Liam and his mandalorians in the deep tunnels of that destroyed cityscape. He had seen the wroth of the spider first hand. And he had personally burned his effigy of Kad Ha’Rangir in the weeks after. For he had no need of such a weak god. Not when gods walked among them. “I think brother that you did not experience our ruin.” Liam’s voice crackled in his throat as his lieutenant let him speak again. “You were not there when the crusade died its death. We thought that Chandrila was our true doom, where Manda’lor fell. But the heart was cut from us at Coruscant. I speak with authority that the Spider lay the crusade beneath the earth. Kad Ha’Rangir, if he ever existed, was merely a shadow of the Spider. A forerunner.” The lieutenant cut back in with a raised hand. “You speak of failed battles, and the fall of spiders as if you have some shred of experience. Tell me, what great Lords of the Sith have you faced and destroyed in battle? What great Jedi? You may be filled with words, but I have given you the terms of service. Strip yourself of everything, past and future dreams, only then will you be able to serve the Spider. For if you want to see power and glory in war that is the only way.” She gestured and the red haired teenager turned her head back towards the Mandalorian. Her cybernetic unit flashing a long logarithm. She stepped forward when the lieutenant spoke again. “This is Æthe 43391, the daughter of our commanding officer. She will help you if you need assistance in taking off your armour. But you have your decision. Now take it.” In the background more soldiers began to appear. Though not in class A uniforms, these were heavily armoured and outfitted.
  6. Liam’s eyes narrowed a fraction of a millimeter, then he gave a sidelong glance to his lieutenant whose smile gave him a momentary shiver. They had been at Coruscant, Liam had served and nearly died for the warrior god, and the long scar that bisected his torso told its own tale. The blood on his hands told another albeit shorter tale. He opened his mouth to rebut the mandalorians request but his smiling lieutenant interjected before he could. “Will we accept you? Why should we take the scattered remnants of a failed crusade? Who forges a chain with links already broken? Your god decided you were the chaff that fed the fire. There is only one god, and that is the Spider. The Lord of Shadows. We burned ten thousand of your crusaders alive in the ruins of Hesperidium. Those that survived we remade in our own fire.” She gave a meaningful look to his beskar, and his broken eyes. “We will not take you as you are. Strip yourself bare. Leave everything behind, every bit of armour, every scrap of pride. Every part of you must belong to the Spider. Only then will we accept you into the Emperor’s army. Into the fire you will step again, and you will be remade into a warrior worthy of the title.” She looked back to the redhaired girl, and nodded. She looked away, the blinking on her cybernetic unit dulling to a faded red. “Well?” _________________ As she began to work on her kit Delta stepped away, walking a brisk path back to his shuttle, where he napped open the high bandwidth antenna and plugged it into his datapad. He waited until the light blinked then turned a solid green, then he pressed the database uplink on the datapad, connecting him through the SCI interface to the central computer of his military attache on the Hellkite. It took a few moments for her to response. “Delta, access code 43002. Research Darkwatch. Send everything you pull to my datapad.” “Copy commander. Files are marked with red tags.” He disconnected the SCI and waited until his datapad had populated with hundreds of files sent down from the Hellkite. He read the attached report and operational status which read that the Darkwatch had been labelled defunct some ten years before. During the late days of the Deton Empire. Back when Delta had been a part of the great golden black sun. He grimaced and snapped the datapad shut. There was much to think about. Several hours later he pushed open the door to her forge. He knocked softly on the door and waited until she had turned around. “I would love a partner.” and his gaze took in the dead slave, then refocused on the beautiful Sith. His face did not change. “Not just a lover, or dark ritual partner, As fun as those things are.” His gaze drifted back to her forge before refocusing again on her. “Worth a try I think.” But could such a thing last?
  7. “You see Æthe?” Lieutenant Hensi painted a gloved hand towards the target, which was now sporting a good sized burn on its upper torso. The black circle now even darker, the edges still glowing a bit from the energy discharge. The young girl beside her, let a sly smile creep across her heavily freckled face as she set the blaster pistol down on the bench in front of her. Hensi drew the silent girl into a quick hug, which left the girl even more speechless. “I knew you could do it. You just needed to press through the frustration.” The girl hesitated then buried her head into the shoulder of the other woman, basking in the hug and letting the feel of it wash through her. She committed the feeling to her frost-storage memory bank. Undeleteable but still accessible. Alongside the other compliments her dad and friends had given her. Little nuggets of humanity, and something she would access before bed. It was not as good as being tucked into bed, the nanny droid tried that, and Æthe did not care for it. But still the memories gave her much comfort as she drifted into a recharge cycle. Her clear blue eyes glanced up from Hensi’s shoulder at the meteor descending towards their landing area. Hensi heard the sonic boom and also felt Æthe stiffen so she let go of her and turned towards the platform as a metallic beast descended from the sky and settled down on the rocky formation that comprised Darkhand’s makeshift platform. She narrowed her eyes against the blinding swarm of rockdust that was kicked up by the microengines on the Basilisk. “Corporal Liam, Hensi, landing pad. Now!” She called into the mic that was attached to the lapel of her class B uniform. She did not wait for the newest member of the SOG to respond, but pushed Æthe behind her and strode to the edge of the primitive landing pad as Corporal Liam came running to join them, his stern face showing what he thought of this Mandalorian. He spared a glance at his lieutenant then turned his stoic face back towards the landing pad. He had served beside many of these kinds of mandalorians. And many of their corpses still lay unburied in the ruins of Coruscant. He stepped forward and joined Æthe and Hensi, his blonde hair blowing about his face as the engines shut down. He raised a hand in greeting. “Vode’an brother. Tell me what is your purpose? You come here to join the military?”
  8. “Captain don’t you think we have had enough of the religious Zealots?” The captain shook his head, a smile brimming on his pale lips. “Now now Corporal, our entire Empire is based off religious zealotry. Don’t you forget it and curse the force or something foolish like that. In fact…” He pulled up his datapad. “There was a unit that took in a large amount of ex mandalorian kad’harangir bullshittists back on Coruscant.” He thumbed through the display. “Yes there we have it. Darkhand. Assigned to base 42. Send him there. And if he doesn’t go, well let the citizens see a micrometeor shower of beskar pieces eh?” “Yes Captain.” The comms corporal clicked over the transceiver to address the mandalorian. “Yes you are free to descend to platform 42. Its a stone pad so don’t come in too hard. Copy?”
  9. Lock target. The great bastion turrets of the Golan defense platforms swiveled incrementally in their mighty gaskets to track the single person snub fighter. A snub fighter that had dropped out of hyperspace despite not having a hyperspace drive in its small beskar carcass. But the gunnery team did not much care about the capabilities of a single fighter. They left that to the garrison star watch commander. Who happened to be sitting along the taffrail of the command deck, and walked briskly to his comm station. “Permission denied unknown Mandalorian. Please state your business. You have ten seconds to comply.” He personally hoped the mandalorian wouldn’t answer. They had not killed anything since the abortive attempt of the Galactic Alliance several years before and his teams needed the practise. _________________ In a few moments Delta had restowed his equipment, and a quick wash brought the luster of life back into his skin. Brushing in the blood and gore before sitting down on one of the mansions overstuffed chairs and looking at his newly redskinned lover. “Of course.” It was not an easy thing to rebuild an old archetype of soldier, he had been so many himself. An ARC, a mercenary, Redhand, then red dawn, then black sun again, a Darkhand officer. He could barely count them all in his head, but he did not have to. They were in the past. And this woman, and the Sith Empire were his future. “I have established a military school at Anaxes after all, and out of this planet and that we could build quite a force. Tell me more about them?” He stood and began a stretching routine as he listened to her reply,
  10. It could not be said that Ca’Aran did not enjoy himself. The passion was there, the lust, the pure bestial urges. It was all there, bounding about the room like a danse macabre, a celebration of base desire. Though he would not have called it evil, it left a pale aftertaste. An almost poison, a sickly aura, and deep inside he could feel that small voice crying out in pain. He was bonded again behind the veil of the Sith Lords. A step away from a permanent doom. But it was everything he could want. And when he ignored that voice he could stomach even the most perverse of his desires. Afterall he had already fallen, right? There was no path to redemption for him, and he was so tired of restraining himself. This was no golden dawn of riches and whores like the Black Sun had given him. The Sith were more simple, and this desire far more base. So he let the voice fall away, blocking his internal ear, and surrendered himself fully to Ailbasí Zirtani. And their passion stained the room like blood. For when they emerged from the chrysalis of passion, she was changed as was he. He had not felt the release of desire since the end of the Clone Wars. When he had committed his first life altering Sin. A young red headed Jedi Knight had paid the price of that sin, gasping out her lifeblood on the end of his shimmering vibroknife. A first love. The last pure love he had ever felt. Now he emerged from this Sin changed again. He had shaken off the chains of his past, leaving the conscience beaten like the ruins of Ailbasí’s corpse. Sprawled and bloody, something to be cleaned up by the servants. But she had changed more. Though perhaps he could only see the exterior changes. He smiled at her new form, the pure red of her skin, the sharp crests of almost keratinous skin. His speaking was slow, almost like he was trying to speak past a tied tongue. And the voice that echoed out had no accent of the Core Worlds. It was the voice of twenty four million men. Of whom only a few remained. “We can order whatever you would like. Nerfs, Neks, Bothans.” He reached for his comm link and dialed the military outpost, opening the line to the cafe. But his humour felt odd and out of character. So he simply pointed the comm’s speaker towards Ailbasí and let her order what she would want.
  11. “Now mistress, that is quite enough. Your father stated that he would be back in 2.0 hours. Though it has been 3.0 hours that is not outside the normal parameters of the Empire’s missions.” Æthe trembled with anger as she stood in opposition to the now repaired nanny droid. Before striding forward and slamming her hand against its photoreceptors. The droid rebounded against the wall and finally shut up. And the girl was left with a very sore hand for her troubles. ______________ “Dismissed. Return to quarters, I will see you all in a few hours no doubt.” He turned to his Lieutenant. “Get some rest, and an extra ration of spirits for the men. We are on stand down for the next week. Let them have their peace and fun. But not too much. We aren’t back in Black Sun.” Lieutenant Hensi smiled under her helmet, then gave him a crisp salute before leading the men back to the shuttles. Delta walked after the beautiful Sith Lord to their shuttle and saluted the dark skinned Sith lord he saw on the way. A fresh recruit from the labyrinth at Korriban no doubt. But every one of them was welcomed in this long war. He followed Ailbasí into the shuttle and set his helmet into the locker beside his seat. He sat down behind the pilot and motioned her to sit beside him. And when the shuttle was in the air, rocketing towards her new base of operations he broke the silence. “So how are you doing. Other than being undead and all that.”
  12. “Well of course we evacuated the hospital. Just because I want you to fight beside us, doesn’t mean I absolutely trust you. If you decided you didn’t want to join us, or were like a Jedi spy or something we would have had to put you down like a dog. Surely you understand.” Delta looked sideways at Ailbasí as he finished his sentence. Then looked back to the one time member of the Sith Trinity. “Playdates are boring anyway when we have got a galaxy load of jedi to murder. What do you say, want to pick back up the old warhammer and knock down some Jedi Masters?” The men at the bottom of the stairs relaxed hearing the tone of voice from their commanding officer. His two lieutenants letting long held breaths out in a long sigh. Was it finally time to get back to relaxing? Or at least sleeping?
  13. The distant vapour trails of a half dozen squadrons of TIE fighters crisscrossed the skies far overhead as they made their way onto the landing pad. A mass of commandos waited behind them should the event take a nasty turn. Delta stepped up and started to slowly walk towards the Sith Master. “Look you were accused of hurting the Dark Lord. And to be honest I don’t give two kriffs about that, it's not a great high crime or felony to go pulling a warhammer on the Dark Lord in the old spirit of Sith Lord love and honour.” Delta raised his hands to show he had no intention of killing or subverting the Sith Lord. "In fact it's something I admire." He shrugged. “I would like to offer you a position in the Sith military if you would have it. We could use someone like you.” He grinned under his helmet. “We saw how you destroyed that Jedi Knight, and we would love you to do it some more...”
  14. Merry Christmas Sithdog, so glad to see you again!
  15. “Now miss Zirtani, those are the kindest words that have been spoken to me since…” What had it been, a decade? Two? He couldn't tell, but all that he felt for the briefest moment was a pure and unadulterated love for the Sith Lord. One that would have shown very obviously on his face if it was not covered by a helmet. It was a lovely feeling, even while fleeting, it made him feel more alive than he had felt for a very long time. He was glad of it, even as fleeting as it might have been. “A very long time at least. If I could somehow take back the things I said, I would. Let us talk more of this after we catch this bastard, Just know if this goes sideways I care very deeply for you.” Delta tapped the side of his holstered blaster pistol, almost absentmindedly as they walked quickly through the screaming and sprinting hospital staff. His eyes flickering between the seething mass of scared humanity and the Sith Lord beside him. He roughly shoved a male nurse out of the way, sending the man hurtling aside as the soldiers behind began to round the hospital staff up. If the escapee was hiding among the fleeing personnel then Darkhand would find him. It would likely end up with one hell of a lot of dead doctors but that was just the price of doing business. “I did know your father, I still know him in a way.” He shoved another doctor aside as he cleared the way towards where the Captive was likely heading. “I fought against him in a number of places during the old Red Dawn and Black Dawn era of the Black Sun. Not directly thank the force, but against his forces.” Another shove and another memory bounced up from his mind. “I may have been a very tiny cog in a very large gear at that point in my not so illustrious career, but I knew his name.” He looked back at her as they made their way past the last of the staff. He pointed to one of the Darkhand sergeants and made a sign using the age old hand signals that had been created by Ailbasís own father. The sergeant opened a case and tossed Delta the lightsaber he had taken off the now very much extinct Sith species Jedi Knight. It was a saber spear, unwieldy and completely unusable in regards to reflecting blaster bolts, but it would serve the purpose needed. “He was a great Sith Master.” Delta looked up towards the vaulted ceiling as they made their way up the stairs, as if the Sith Master would appear as if summoned. “Dagon was his name. The Dark Father of the Krath.” He left that name hanging in the air and pressed the sabre into her hand. “Perhaps we need a very long conversation if we make it out of this alive.” He could hear movement ahead on the staircase and with a bound up the stairs Delta could see the man ascending. Very likely the target. He did not unholster his blaster. But he kept a hand on it. "Master Kakuto Ryu., stop! You are needed and I would ask you kindly to stop scaring the staff of this hospital.”
  16. Hello, while there is not an option to start a character at the Knight level as a new player, we would be happy to help coordinate a background with you so you can easily slide through the new player experience! Have you joined the discord? Hit me up there or on PMs so I can help,
  17. He reached a hand out and lay it softly on the woman’s shoulder. He gave it a slight squeeze before letting it drop. It was a gesture of both trust and good will, if not also thanks and appreciation. She was going through a hell that he could not know, and her journey would take her far into the wall of the storm. For good or ill she had decided her path. “Thank you Ailbasí.” He looked off towards the medical facility as the jump hatch pulled back from the shuttle. “I am sorry for what I did.” He sighed and pulled his grey helmet back over his head. The Visor remained dark for a moment before it lit up with a dull red glow. Matching the hundreds of other helmets that were now being put on around the facility as the soldiers of the Sith Marines began to surround the army hospital. He turned back to her as they began to walk towards the main entrance. The dead looking ‘T’ visor and synthetic voice portraying little if any of the emotion he actually felt. “Death is written like a thick ink across both of our faces. Death becomes all that I love. And it had certainly come to you.” He felt a regret instantly at saying it. As if admitting to his guilt somehow made it all the more real. But he plowed on. “Every good work I have done turns to death. Perhaps it is the divine is forcing me to reap the bitter tears I sewed years ago.” Delta’s fingers drummed nervously on the handle of his pistol as he continued. “I made a promise Ailbasí, I promised I would protect you. I promised I would protect you with every ounce of my being and now… look how i have failed you. Failed Him.” So I am sorry Ailbasí. And I am sorry to your Father for failing you. But I will not do so again.” His helmet looked up at the sky as if looking for a spirit among the spotted clouds. “I have reaped what I have sown. So I must thank you for wading into the storm beside me. Despite my failures.” The doors opened up before them as medical staff came running out with their hands raised. “Here is to peace in our time, no matter the cost.”
  18. “And just what was holding you back?” The flashing red light and siren blasted any good attempt of conversation away and left Delta with little room to talk. A quick glance at his comm and attached datapad told him it was from the medical hospital about a kilometer away from the barracks. And As he considered the opening move, the majority of his strike team came boiling into ranks in front of him and miss Zirtani. He gave her a wary and friendly smile before dismissing Æthe with a glance and a quick hug. Then he looked out at the tired mass of men and women. “All right we have a possible containment breech of a high level force user. Possible Jedi Knight or Corrupted Sith Lord. Whatever was on that spasted star destroyer, looks like we brought it back with us. Medics, administer Medperanazine. As per protocol.” He gave his men an apologetic look and mimicked a shrug. “Sorry for the letdown tonight lads, nothing else we can do after a 20 hour deployment. Drink water and get into the transports. When we get home we will have a party and work off the drugs okay?” They all saluted. Armoured arms crashing across their chests in a melody of noise. “Surround the hospital and prepare strike teams. Myself and our Sith Companion here will make first entry and discern the danger. You know those Sec boys, They are notoriously jumpy.” And as a unit they moved to the short hop transports. Delta escorting the lovely Sith Lord. When they were seated for the less than a minute flight he held out his arm so that she could see the screen of the datapad that was mounted there. “Kakuto Ryu. If you know the name it means the hammer is right behind it. There’s a statue of him on Korriban you know. One of the old trinity at the battle of Gala. When the music starts its a damn tune to dance to.” So he was either an ally, or a very dangerous enemy. But he found himself grinning at her despite it all. Whichever way this went it was good to see her again. And the shuttle touched down outside the hospital with a flurry of blown dust and small branches.
  19. How long has it been since recovery operations? Sixteen hours? Twenty? Delta couldn’t know, sure he could have looked at the multiple data packet reports that were waiting on his datapad, or he could even ask his team who all looked about as tired as he felt. His clear blue eyes flicked around the helmetless faces in the shuttle and settled on Lieutenant Hensi’s exhausted face. Like many of the old guard of Hellkite, Darkhand, and Lima One before it, she had come from the upper echelon of the Black Sun commandos. They had a long and storied history together but even her grey eyes told him nothing of her thoughts. The Dark Lord had been very badly hurt in the Corellian campaign, and beside it all Delta could only feel that it was his own fault. Didn’t everyone? If he had only been there. Her eyes narrowed for a second and she blinked away her tiredness. “Don’t think of it that way.” He tapped the barrel of his E-22 in return, feeling the heat warped metal through the thin pressure gloves he was wearing. “I can’t help it Sigrid.” There was a snapping sound, like someone had just snapped their fingers in front of his face and the smiling face of Blacktorin leaned in beside him. “She means it, it’s not your fault he took a fight like that. He and we will know for next time. THe Empire survives.” Another snapping sound and Sigrid wiped a stream of black blood away from the corners of her mouth with the back of her glove. Redheaded Blacktorin tucked a lock behind a blood drained pale ear and smiled. The gums showing white and bloodless at the base of her white teeth. Snap! And he was pushed violently sideways, his head smacking into the bulkhead with enough force that a flash of lights overcame his vision. He furiously rubbed the posts out of his eyes and saw the very concerned face of Langraf leaning over him. “Be quiet or you will scare the men. We are all tired, but do not speak to ghosts right now. Please.” Oh. That was right of course. They were dead. Sigrid against that blasted Jedi, and Blacktorin back on Mon Calamari. He gripped Landgraf’s hand fiercely and hauled himself back into his seat. The men and Women of Darkhand pretended not to notice. Their eyes avoiding his gaze. “Your datapad is firing on all cylinders Ca’Aran.” She whispered, indicating the blinking lights on his arm’s armour. A priority message from The Nanny bot that normally cared for Æthe. “Spast.” _____________________________ The Swoop bike hummed delightfully as the pair zipped over the receding swamplands. The roar of passing air was like a hurricane in her ears, but Æthe didn’t much care. She had a friend now after all, even if her appearance was bizarre, and her attachment to her Father even more so. But as they neared the barracks she started to slow down, The shuttles were back, and the sight of the blonde man standing in grey armour at the garage door, brought her hopes for something new and interesting crashing down. Even his arms were folded. She sighed and brought the bike to a skidding halt in front of Ca’Aran a flush already building behind her freckles. But he wasn’t angry. ______________________________ “Æthe!” Delta shouted, the extreme tiredness now beginning to return to his voice with the newfound relief of seeing her alive and well. And who was that behind her? He strode out to the two of them and hugged his daughter before reaching out to the waif-like woman who was her companion. He let a smile flicker across his face. A sad smile of relief. “I did not know I would see you again so soon Ailbasí“ And he gave the bow expected of a soldier to a Sith Master.
  20. It was so dark and dank in the building that it caused a shiver of disgust to tingle up her spine. Diagnostics thundered their reports in the back of her head as she stepped through the front door that she had pushed open. Immediately she could feel the sucking mire clinging to her boots and calves but nothing in the diagnostics explained the sudden howl of fear that peaked in her stomach. It was an easy thing to suppress, the cybernetic unit helped overcome the fear with a quick suppression of her nervous system but that also came with a dulling of her other senses. Immediately the smell of rot faded as did the sour taste in her mouth. The air still felt oppressive, but she couldn't figure out if it was some kind of humidity trapped within the old walls or some other danger sense. Still she couldn’t be afraid right? She let her eyes trace up the grand staircase until they settled on a young woman in a slightly outdated dress from the imperial era of Onderon. Was it unusual? Not really, Dad had kept all kinds of old uniforms, some of them from the republic of all eras but this woman carried with her a tragic elegance that Æthe knew that she could never hope to compare. She had a beauty in all things, like a faded rose she carried herself with grace and sadness. Or was it sadness. Æthe couldn’t tell but the voice caused another impulsive shiver up her spine that the cybernetic unit could not suppress. She took a step forward and the mire sucked up to her calf. She grimaced then pulled off the cap she had taken from her father’s armoury. She tucked it into her belt and gave a half bow that was more manners programming that anything she could identify. It felt like it fit the situation though, and she found herself half wishing for such a pretty dress… “I am Æthe.” But it was incomplete. Did she even have a surname? She thought for a second before continuing. Settling what she perceived to be her dad’s last name, though she did not know the Mandoa’ that would have made it intelligible. “Æthe uhhhh Aran. I came because my dad got a distress signal….” A little bit of doubt began to creep into her mind and her side of the conversation stuttered out. How could she say that she just up and came because he was busy? Was this even the person who had called? Programming told her nothing. And she was at a loss for words so her confidence slipped. But she did take another step forward. Almost involuntarily.
  21. The elderly Y-Wing bomber’s engines sputtered for a moment as a long string of green energy impacted the starboard nacelle that held the engines firmly to the battered chassis. Hands played fitfully over the controls as the bomber began to loose power but not its forward momentum. The starboard engine was not reacting to any commands, and the central power core itself was beginning to go out. Likely coolant lines cut by the TIE fighter’s aggressive blast. “R3, get me a full diagnostic.” But the grey metallic surface was looming closer. How many seconds before they impacted to the side of the trench? Ten? Five? There was a whistle and the controls beneath her hands began to react, though sluggish, she was able to slowly pulled the stricken Y-Wing out of its suicidal low arc. Feeling the controls buck horribly against her hands. The blasted thing was falling apart. But without engine power she was still less maneuverable than a lambada shuttle… “Can you cut power from weapons to the engine repair?” DING What the... “R3?” DING Oh DING “Halt simulation.” The Y-wing fuzzed into nothingness and the “Y-Wing Death Star Assault” logo appeared over where the Y-Wing had been. She blinked once, then twice and it all faded away. She was staring at a stone ceiling and laying in bed. She brought a hand up and disconnected the thick cable that was pinned into her cybernetic unit. Twist then pull, then she snapped shut the cable and charging inputs before she sat up. DING It was the comm unit that Dad always kept on the table. She jumped out of bed and ran to the unit, slapping the ‘acknowledge’ button as soon as she got to the comm. The words were mostly lost in the low bandwidth but as they repeated again she cocked her head to the side and let the automation take over. A few dials were turned and the message came in clearer. It was a distress signal! Her fingers flew over the keyboard, letting the comm unit do its own triangulation to give an approximate location. Many miles away. “MO34?” It took a few seconds for the nanny droid to respond in its usual huffy tone. “I can’t get a hold of Dad on his personal comm? Is he still on a mission?” She could have just checked the military archive, but it seemed better to ask before she used Dad’s codes again. “Yes he will not get back until 1400 tomorrow according to the secretary AI.” An Idea began to blossom in her head. A dangerous idea. An idea that would make him proud. An idea that her programming fought against with every tooth and nail. But after all what was ‘personal choice/responsibility’ really for if you never disobeyed your programming? That shut the little protesting voices up and Æthe let a slow smile crawl across her face. She took a step back from the comm after she typed a quick response. MO34 turned her pale yellow photoreceptors on Æthe and let out a little robotic gasp. “Misstress Æthe, surely you don’t intend to go after this woman!” The red haired girl simply smiled and walked towards one of the locked closets where her Dad kept his armoury. The droid hurried to intervene, placing itself between the girl and the armoury door. “Æthe 43391!” Why did she use those numbers? The sound of them caused a flash of anger and she paused for a moment before firmly kicking the robot in its padded chest. The droid spun on its repulsors and crashed into doors, crashing through them before coming to a sputtering stop. Its yellow receptors fading to black as Æthe stepped over her into the expansive closet armoury. She selected one of the large DC-15 pistols that her father had kept on the wall, along with the harded kydex holster that went along with it. She threaded it through her belt and grabbed a poncho and cap that had the dark crimson star of black sun on them. Both were too large but at least the cap covered the bulky cybernetic unit. Which Æthe was glad for. She grabbed a medical kit and stuffed it into her backpack before she retreated to her own room to get fully dressed. Sitting down on her bed, she slipped on the heavy leather boots she had gotten for her lifeday then plugged an automation cable back into her head. “Computer. Full emergency medical download.” Her eyelids fluttered and she could sense a large amount of the virtual memory she kept blank get suddenly filled with a large amount of data. It was an addicting feeling. She considered accessing the battle mechanics and training that were heavily restricted but decided against it. She would get enough trouble for battering down Nanny. No reason to get in even more trouble. It wasn’t like the forests of Onderon were that dangerous. She withdrew the cable and tucked it back into its wall slot. She double checked the signal location before she walked into the attached garage. She selected one of the two seater swoops that her dad kept and slipped her datacard into its ignition slot. “IS THIS AN EMERGENCY?” “Yes!” She yelled in frustration. And the swoop roared to life under her. No doubt it would send a ping to dad, but there was not much she could do to help that. His friend needed a rescue. He couldn’t be mad about that right? The garage rolled open and she accelerated slowly out into the dirt roads behind the barracks. She let the automation direct her movements and before she knew it she was closing in on the abandoned suburbs of Iziz. That caused her to slow as soon the overgrowth was lashing endlessly at the bottom of the swoop. Scratching it’s bright white paint to a dull grey. She took another few turns and soon she was mostly surrounded by gnarled trees and the long shadows cast by the setting sun. Everything here was so overgrown. Abandoned. A creepy feeling shot up her spine as she pulled the swoop up fifty meters short of the triangulated SOS. The woods were thick now, and very little light penetrated the overhanging branches. There was little or no sign of life. She pulled a glowrod from her backpack and snapped it on. The pale blue light illuminating the looming old manse, half drowned in a swamp of mud and roots. It had likely once belonged to a great princely house. Now long destroyed, but its elegance still clung to the grounds like a mist. She gulped down a mouthful of water and shone the glowrod on the house itself as she began to walk towards it. Slowly wading through the mud as she neared the entrance. “Hello?” She called in a voice that echoed dully off the overgrown walls.
  22. SignalHorn.ogg The alarm klaxons echoed throughout the Onderon System as the Sith Imperial Fleet emerged from hyperspace over the dual planets. Initial scans told the engineers in orbit everything they needed to know about how the assault on Corellia had gone. Though the fleet had lost many support ships, the gaping holes in Goliath and other star destroyers told the story of the firefight. Perhaps, they thought, the Galactic Alliance had finally found a spine. But the fleet was not wholly disemboweled. The majestic Kyber class Star Destroyers had not been left in smoking ruin in the stars. The commanders had seen their men through the worst of the fighting, and they would see them safely docked at the emergency yards in low orbit. “Scramble them an escort, bring the reserve fleet to bear. And the Ion cannon online. We do not know if the Rebels are pursuing.” “Command!.” Came the confident voice of a lieutenant from comms, and all eyes glanced to her. Feeling the sudden press of eyes, her countenance shrank but she pressed through the embarrassment. “Reports from the automatic fire suppression systems and AI in the interior of the Goliath report blaster fire. It appears the command ship may have suffered from a Jedi or Rebel strike team.” The Governor nodded. “Then we will send a team of our own.” ___________________________ “Now follow through.” Delta shook his head as he watched the young woman squeeze her eyes shut as she pulled the trigger. The bolt sailed into one of the stone facades that made up the old black sun and now Sith Marine quarters, showering splinters of stone into the grey dirt. He let out a laugh as did the Marines relaxing behind him in the shade of a barrack door. The target was, as of yet, untouched despite the girls best efforts. She groaned and placed the pistol onto the granite countertop before looking ashamedly back to Delta. He held up a finger to ward off tears or apologies then extended the arm to pull her into a close hug. “You are still closing your eyes Æthe. Work with sergeant Liminsdurn after dinner on it. But I see improvement.” She nodded and then returned the hug. And Delta could feel the little droplets of unacknowledged tears against his chest. He sighed and patted her red hair, making sure to not hit the thin styled cybernetic unit that stretched along the backside of her head. Connecting from temple to temple. “You are doing great Æthe.” He pulled the hug tighter for a moment before letting her go. “Thanks Dad.” Her grey blue eyes met his and she gave him another hug before sticking her tongue out at the marines behind him. That was greeted by a chorus of laughter that Delta happily joined in on as he watched her run away back to the command quarters. Then the siren sounded over the courtyard and he was sprinting towards the barracks. ___________________________ “Bring us in slowly, there is still a lot of electricity in the area.” Delta’s voice was muffled as he leaned over the shoulder of the pilot in the shuttle. The naval pilot nodded silently as he pulled the shuttle into the destroyed hanger bay and Delta got his first sight of the ragged interior. “Mag locks on, move in bounding cover.” The rear hatch dropped and the marines of Echo company moved in formation down the ramp. It was a damn horror show, bodies floating, girders collapsed and whole sections of the ship were open to space. But there were no signs of active resistance. “Midicos are clear for entry, start triage. Tag any Jedi or Sith bodies.”
  23. First off, let me just appreciate the work both of you did in retelling a homage to the ‘Trinity’ and the battle of Gala. Having reread that fight after a first passthrough and then rereading this fight again I must say it is a fitting addition, both sides having shown tremendous growth in both character and writing ability. My only complaint was that actions can sometimes get lost in the midst of dialogue and perhaps highlighting them could have been more helpful to the mod teams. However it does ruin the aesthetic of the posts so I understand why it would not be included. Now on to a ruling. While both characters used quite a few actions in their posts it is to be expected as both are master level PCs. Ryu’s attacks were succinct and feasible in the environment of the last duels aftermath. His three main attacks (Debris launched via warhammer, the warhammer hammer itself, and the lightsaber) were dismissed entirely by Draygo. While it is normally a good idea to not take massive damage in a single post duel, completely ignoring your opponent’s attacks is not the direction you should take. Draygo’s two attacks (A grapple followed by placing a lightsaber hilt against Ryu’s chest) while a feasible attack it should be noted that this is a closed attack. (posting successfully completing a grapple is posting the effects of an open ended attack which is disallowed in the RP.) While obviously not intended abusively, it does tip the duel in Ryu’s favour. As such Kakuto Ryu is the winner and may have the next post.
  24. “You see we start small scale.” Delta ran his fingers over the expansive flimsiplast blueprints and attached datasheets. Glancing only for a moment back to the Military Architect team before looking back to the mound of blue and white flimsi. “I need about fifty thousand clone tanks with an additional hundred in a private quarter. Fast growth only. No need to waste the time when we are in a bloody war eh?” The Architects exchanged a quizzical look before solemnly nodding. For while there had been losses in this war, there had been very few large scale losses, not to the scale the Captain was suggesting at least. “May I suggest a test facility first Captain?” Said the youngest and the prettiest of the engineers who had not yet recovered her colour from seeing what an astronomically high cost such a program would require. “You see we have the derelict Tector-class Star Destroyer Indefatigable which is sitting disused.” She seemed to be making it up as she went to Delta but the nodding heads of the Architects and Engineers convinced him otherwise. “It only needs its fuel rods replaced…” She continued, tucking a stray blonde hair behind her ear. “Then since most of its decking has already been stripped we can replace the majority of it with a honeycomb cloning array.” She placed a new and slightly less bulky stack of blue and white flimsy onto the tabletop. “The refitting can take a few weeks but then we don’t have to prefabricate a whole new vessel, since Tectors already have their hangers sealed off. It should survive the storms of Kamino just fine especially with an engine refit.” Delta did not even need to look at her designs and simply nodded towards the pretty face. “Let it be so Lieutenant Halifax. I will meet you on surface in three weeks.” ______________________________ It only took the magnificent Kuat Drive Yards two weeks to fully refit the Indefatigable, but it took another three weeks of finding and sourcing to establish one hundred quick cloning arrays from the archives held on Onderon, and an additional Week to source enough ocean blue paint to cover the aging Tector class star destroyer. But in only double the required time that Delta had given them the Army Corps of Engineers and Architects had positioned the Star Destroyer at right above sea level of the water world. The first bays were filled with embryonic fluid, and the staffing of medical and security personnel were placed. When the ship was fully operational, Delta began with a few test clones of some very special individuals. Mobile Cloning Station Indefatigable Class: Tector-class Star Destroyer Length: 1,600 Meters Crew: 3,000 support Personnel, 1,000 security personnel Armament: 12 heavy turbolaser arrays, 30 anti starfighter cannons Cloning Capacity: 100 initial, 2,000 planned.
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