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  1. Xar

    The Ebon Star

    While initially curious how our scanners could make such a mistake, my dread won out and I ordered a return to the surface. We would explore these depths further another day. No sooner had the order left my lips did we then hear the thing. Down the hall we had come from came the noise. A low croaking sound, its call chilled all of our skins. The thing emerged from the darkness. Perhaps once a native, this thing, long since either devolved or mutated, bore little likeness to the Serpenthe we assumed were the native species, save its serpentine body. On each of its many splintered hands were singular black claws, and its singular eye on its chest glowed with the same color that the black hole above made with its accretion disk. Before we could communicate with the thing, it attacked us. It made short work of most of my men, as our blasters had little effect on its red, spongy body and its black claws sliced through our plastoid armor easily. It was only by the quick-thinking of one of my men that we detonated a grenade to kill the monster. It spilled no blood. Its body, unique and disgusting, only pulsed and quivered with unwavering heat. While unsure if it was alive, I ordered a full autopsy, knowing I needed to bring back something to show for our adventure. To my horror, as we attempted to dissect the thing, we found that this creature’s flesh was not only similar to the soil of the planet’s surface, it was identical. Though my crew suspected the idea, I myself knew that the reason we hadn’t found any of the remains of the Serpenthe was because we had already trampled on their remains. Our retreat could not be swifter, as my own horrors were becoming more and more palpable. The noise that the thing had emitted called for others of its kind, and somewhere in the labyrinthine tunnels did noises of its mates call to us. More than once we came across a beast and had to break into a new direction to avoid a fight. But one by one, the monsters picked us off until I only remained. I had found myself before another locking mechanism when the floor gave way. How far down I fell I’m unsure, but I awoke to another library-like room. However, instead of intrinsic, artistic pictures, only one image was in this room: the black hole at the base of the floor, where protruded an obelisk, made of the same substance as the planet’s ‘skin’. Here the force was absent entirely. As impossible as it is, I know for certain that the Force did not exist there in that chamber. Whether it was because that place was older than the force itself, because I had somehow traveled into the very realm of the black hole, or because the midichlorians that made up the Force completely died there, I do not know, but the force was absent here. I felt the emptiness that the lack of the Force had on me. It is a feeling I never wish to experience again, for I believe if I died here, I would never be one with the Force. I pushed back my existential fears and investigated the obelisk. To my surprise, it bore tattoo-like writing all over its spongy exterior. In colors that swayed and altered with each second that passed by, i found the first writings i had seen on the planet: at first I found ancient Gree, but as i continued to look, i found old Bith, lost Taung, crude Huttese, and even bits of what i believed to be damnable Rakata. However, when I found modern and clear basic in the writings as well, I took a breath and read out the name spelled out on that primordial object. The entire system shuddered with the words I read, as I summoned forth a realm of death and madness to my very feet. By some miracle, I somehow escaped to the surface of the planet, and saw in the sky that thing I so foolishly summoned by words alone. My mind broke at that moment, and everything went black. When I came to, I found myself on a lifepod, escaping with the corpse of my close friend and all of my greenhorns. Babbling wildly, my greenhorns turned on themselves, and in the end, only I lived to escape that cursed system. Do not think me mad, even if the doctors around me declare it so. What we had found was no disease, nor was it a discovery worth investigating. I have done my best to erase all records of that damned system, and implore you to never return to it. I myself will soon end my life before I accidentally reveal that source of evil. I have seen what madness does to the force: the remains of the Serpenthe are proof of that. Should what we discovered there be released upon the galaxy, I fear that even the Force itself will succumb to madness as entire worlds crumble under its gaze. Do not pierce the shroud that blinds us from that horror. I implore you: Leave it be.
  2. Xar

    The Ebon Star

    My first steps on the planet were exhilarating. The crimson ground was soft to the touch, like old flesh never devoured by the scavengers so many planets had. The sky above carried a pale white glow, for the black hole’s accretion disk had a unique effect on that thin atmosphere mix of oxygen and neon gasses. The moisture in the ground made it squish under our feet, being slightly spongy in certain places. Samples of the soil revealed it to be highly carbon based. We came to the conclusion that below the surface, where the tunnel system was, would reveal an environment more akin to Sullust or Mustafar. The surface of the world held very little architecture, but from where the radio signals emitted, we found a massive entrance into the earth. Carved from a singular black material, the temple-like gateway stood against the white sky like a dagger piercing the heavens. Gigantic in stature, we could not help but stand in awe of its presence, curious of its creators who had to be massive in their own right. Scans could not pierce the building’s exterior, and all attempts at carving off pieces of the material resulted in dulled equipment. I wondered if even a lightsaber could carve through the material, for even our plasma torches had no effect. Thankfully the entrances were open to us. Stationing droids to help mark our path back as well as to take detailed surveys of the rooms, we entered the building. I confess, I felt something was off on this world, but my excitement continued to drive me forward. Whatever beings that had created such a building were clearly advanced in both technological and architectural senses, and I hoped to find both the source and the means to harvest the material the building was made of. Our descent into the planet's tunnels revealed to us much about the residents of the planet. The design and structure of the doors seemed to indicate a possibly serpentoid species. Handles, levers and pedals suggested that the species had appendages that were as dexterous as any humanoid hand. The lack of any lighting sources underground suggested the species may have been capable of seeing in pitch darkness, or had some other means of sensing besides visual. Of the rooms we believed to be either bedrooms or pleasure rooms, little cosmetic thought was given. Our guesses led us to believe that the native species here practiced a frugal and austere lifestyle. The thing that confused and made me both worried and curious was the size of objects. Certain doorways and tunnels could’ve had three men standing on top of each other, and the pedals that we occasionally had to press to go forwards required the combined effort of our droids and team. In one room, which we figured to be some kind of access hallway, had a central sphere made of the same material as the building above. To open the doors in the hallway, we had to spin the sphere, a task that required four of my strongest droids. But by the size of the hallway compared to previous halls, it seemed this task was meant for a singular member of the alien species. For all of our searches, we found neither technology nor remains of the species. The staleness of the Force became worse the further down we went. It was as if Life was here, but not reproducing like it did across the galaxy. The force felt, for the first time in my life, old and unrejuvenated. We eventually came across what I could only describe as some kind of library or historical record. Our faces could not hold back our expressions of wonder at this chamber. Scrolls of unknown material were pinned over walls of black stone, showing images of unrecognizable scenes on alien worlds. Paintings of landscapes and artworks covered empty spaces on the walls, ceiling and floors, each picture trailing into another as if it was a historical record of the species as a whole. The pictures, hieroglyphic in their simplest form, depicted forms of beings and plants and monsters of all manner. It appeared the species here lacked any form of writing and communicated only with pictures, or even just color. We were able to confirm that the native species were serpentoid and muiti-armed, leading us to name them Serpenthe. What we could decipher filled us with dread. While we had no way of determining an exact translation, the story we could decipher suggested something vile. The Serpenthe seemed to live in awe of the black hole above. All of their history seemed to begin with a stone of the same color as the planet and accumulate with the black hole, for at the base of their curved floors was the planet, and at the apex of their domed ceiling accumulated with the black hole. Several Serpenthe figures appeared to be worshiping both the planet and black hole, while others were offering gifts of stone and body parts. And from the black hole emerged several tendrils and eyes, like some form of deity emerging to its worshipers. In all of the data we gathered, we still found no sign of what happened to the native species. None of the artwork indicated space travel of any kind, nor did we find the remains of ship parts. Even if some catastrophe had struck down the species, the tunnel system indicated that remains of the Serpenthe would still exist somewhere. It was this curiosity that drove me to explore deeper, despite my crewmates hesitancy to do so. They all could feel the same sense of stale energy the Force carried here, and believed it unwise to continue. I sent my youngest greenhorns back to the surface to update the ship, while I had the rest of us continue. Now I wish I had not done so, knowing what I know now. Our journey took us to the deeper bowels of the planet, far below than what I originally intended to explore. As we continued those dark, massive halls, we only found more empty chambers, libraries like the one above, and doors utilizing massive spheres and pedals. Our hope of finding new technology became less heartened, and I feared that this planet would remain a mystery for years to come. Our curiosity soon turned to dread. According to all of our scanners, we were approximately 20,750 kilometers inside the planet’s interior. However, we knew this to had be false, for our ship’s scanners measured the planet to be a size similar to Coruscant's diameter of 12,240 kilometers. The tunnels had become more and more spartan, with only doors, empty chambers and confusing locking mechanisms repeating over and over. And all the while, the Force felt more and more stale, like we were journeying away from life itself.
  3. Do not think me mad, even if the doctors around me declare it so. Do not declare my sanity is non-existent, but instead listen to these words. Listen, listen to these words on this holocron, and make a judgment of my sanity for yourself. My name is [redacted]. I was born on Naboo, within the city of Theed, and while my heritage was neither Human nor Gungan, I felt Naboo as always my home. I was a member of the Jedi Service Corps, within the ExplorCorps, from the years [redacted]. While many of my peers would think me a washout, I held no shame in my occupation. Of the service corps, I held an invigorating position, and my placement often put me on the same level as some Jedi knights, despite not being as skilled in the Force. My tasks were often helping chart out courses into Deep and Wild space, finding new routes between major spacelanes, creating shortcuts that the republic could use. My findings were never published publicly, but instead kept strictly for military use, so that smugglers could not make use of my discoveries. In the year [redacted], I was granted the rank of captain, and my very own ship, a [redacted] that bore the name [redacted]. Sleek, sturdy, and capable of taking up voyages that could last an entire year, I was very proud of the vessel. Under my command including 100 technicians, 50 navigationists, 2 other so called ‘washouts’, 65 droids and 4 doctors. All members of the [redacted ship name] were well trained. I only carried 8 greenhorns, and during the voyage I would oversee some of their training. In addition to our normal crew, we carried 1 Jedi Seeker, a Nautolan named [redacted]. [redacted] and I were good friends, and while he went on to become a knight of the Jedi order, he never lorded over me his accomplishment. He was a humble and dedicated individual, and never wavered in any of his duties. His role was only to advise me and help deal with any potential dark sided threats, but given my ship experience, we often became lax on that and instead focused our discussions on philosophy and politics. Our maiden voyage was to explore sectors [redacted] to [redacted]. The reason for this was because several smugglers had been captured, ranting and raving about a new star system they had discovered. Their data droid provided us with coordinates, but the smugglers' stories themselves made me curious. Or rather, the lack of stories. They were blubbering messes, and believed to be suffering some kind of psychological disease. My mission was to explore the region their droid had shown, to gather biological samples, and to ensure that no one else was in the system. The journey to the system took us about [redacted]. During that time, my friend and I discussed the potential of what a psychological disease could do if an outbreak took hold on Coruscant. Our discussions turned towards philosophy, and how the Jedi code meshes with subjects such as diseases and madmen: If all life is sacred, are we going against the Force eradicating diseases? If the Force is sentient in the manner of that some believed, was fighting disease going against its will? Are cures inherently good just because they save life, or are they good because we deem it so? What of the madmen that this potential disease creates? If the disease is natural, then are madmen as how the Force intended them to be? Is madness something to consider in the realm of the light side? Is there such a thing as a genuinely mad Jedi? Does a madman’s death affect the cosmic force on a whole? Should enough madmen die, would the cosmic force suffer in the end? What would that effect look like? My friend, a staunch traditionalist, was a worthy verbal sparring partner in these discussions, but in the end we were both left unnerved with our conclusions. He pondered in the Jedi council even debated these subjects like we have, and if they had, what conclusions they came to. I on the other hand was more liberal, and while concerned about our conclusions, I was more excited than anything else. The pursuit of knowledge always made me this way, a reason why I was assigned to the ExplorCorps. System [redacted] was an elusive target, but once found, my friend and I both felt something was off. Not as well trained, I would've defected to my friends' conclusions about the force, but here we were in agreement separately. The force here felt stale and old. While the Force was still here, it did not feel correct. I wondered if the Force here was the reason for the smuggler’s condition, but my friend assured me that was unlikely. The system had 7 celestial objects circling a black hole with the approximate size of a medium mass orange-yellow star. However, much to our confusion, this black hole had a much larger than average accretion disk, providing light and heat across the system. Of the celestial objects, two were gas giants, with numerous small moons, three were micro planets, and two were planets within habitable levels. Our discoveries made me ecstatic to say the least. The fact that the black hole here had two planets that could provide life would be a discovery of the ages. My joy became almost enrapturing when we discovered radio signals coming from both planets. While the signals were garbage for the most part, it did seem to indicate that intelligent life may have existed on these worlds. My friend was not so eager. Being more attuned to the Force, he knew something was off. Had I been more attentive, I would’ve noticed he had become nauseated just being in the system, but my focus was on the potential archeological ruins on the habitable planets. To cover more ground, my friend and I led two different teams. He would take a team to the first planet that was further away from the black hole, a seemingly near-water world, with temperatures and land mass like Lamaredd. I would lead a team on the closer planet, a more tectonically active world that, while it had a thin but breathable atmosphere, sensors indicated a tunnel system underneath the surface. We both took along protective equipment, remembering the possibility that a disease may have originated here.
  4. During the Mandalorian wars of 3964 BBY, several sith alchemists attempted to make a weapon that could overcome Beskar armor. While they never fully succeeded, one of their end results was the Soulbreaker Hammer The Soulbreaker hammer is a weapon based on the design of the power hammer tool, utilizing Repulsorlift and Shockwave generator tech. What set this weapon apart from normal power hammer tools, is that the Sith Alchemists included alchemized metal to resist lightsabers, as well as a kyber crystal in the hammer's head to amplify the energy used in the shockwave generators. The result of the Soulbreaker hammer is a lightsaber resistant weapon that can generate powerful shockwaves when connecting its blows to solid material, either shattering objects or sending them flying. Due to the technology, the shockwaves it generates only function properly when striking solid and hard objects; most soft objects, including flesh, tend to burst or break, with no shockwave generated. Due to the combination of tech and metals, the Soulbreaker hammer is an incredibly heavy weapon. Described as “heavy enough to make a Gamoerrean thug think twice on using it”, people have to be very familiar and very strong to utilize the weapon, much less effectively against a lightsaber (ie, a soldier or a Warrior/Guardian). Unfortunately, the Sith were unable to mass produce the weapon before the end of the war. As a result, only about 300 were made, each with a unique design for a specific Sith Lord. However, most of them have been lost to time. Rumors persist that the Sith and Mandalorians have rediscovered a few, but have not put in the effort to replicate the technology yet. The Jedi have also recovered one such weapon, and theorized a Phrik alloy that could replace the Sith alchemised metal. These theorized hammers are known as Lightmaker Hammers, though they have been mostly discarded as a more 'barbaric version of a lightsaber'.
  5. Identity Real Name: Qessax Jal Todda A.K.A: Agent Qessax, Warhunter Qessax Homeworld: Kalee Species: Kaleesh Class: commander (Rank 2) Physical Description Age: 26 Height: 5’6” Weight: 179 lbs Hair: Black Eyes: Yellow Sex: Male Equipment Clothing or Armor: Black Imperial Intelligence Uniform. Light Field Armor Chest Plate Weapon: Traditional Lig Sword, Imperial Naval Officer’s Sidearm, Common Inventory: Bone Mask carried at Hip, Datapad. Faction Information Force User, Force Sensitive or Non-Force User: Non-Force User Archetype: Specialist Alignment: Lawful Good Current Faction Affiliation: Rebel Alliance Rank: 2 History Trained by: Imperial Navy and Nickoli Kolchak, Todda Tribe Trained who: N/a Known Skills: Basic Marksmanship, Tactical and Naval Command, Fencing and basic swordsmanship, Intelligence Gathering Background: Qessax’s father, the Great Chief of the Todda tribe, has begun a unification effort to unite all of the tribes of Kalee under one banner. His goal is to help modernize the Kaleesh people, stepping away from being the occasionally enslaved warriors into a people to be feared and respected by the entire galaxy. In foresight, the chief pulled a radical political move and declared war on a singular imperial officer. This was done to show some of the chiefs critical opposes that he was not afraid of people from off world and would not be easily swayed by their ways. He then, with Qessax in tow who was barely an adult, went to the imperial officer and purposefully lost a match with the officer. By ancient custom, the chief then handed his son over to the officer, to be done with as the officer saw fit. He did request that the officer would enlist his son in the same training that the officer went under. The officer, named Nikolai Kolchak, agreed. This move was also a miliarial one. The chief hoped that in being enlisted into imperial academy, Qessax will learn more techniques of the wider galaxy, build relationships with the Alliance that could help bring industry to Kalee, and be made a war hero that the galaxy will respect as a representative of the Kaleesh people. Qessax was eager to accomplish the task his father had bestowed upon him. While at first he struggled in the Imperial Navy, having to learn that commanding basic soldiers was much different from leading a war party of warriors, Qessax had to adapt quickly. His biggest struggles came with balancing his Spiritual beliefs against the practices of command. He couldn’t pursue simple acts of rudeness with the full force he was accustomed to giving back home. However, he adapted. While only a captain, Qessax transferred into Alliance Intelligence, where his attention to details and his personal beliefs wouldn’t put his own men into danger. While a bit more bored with the more paper-pushing work, Qessax continues to work diligently and loyally in hopes that this service will provide use for his homeworld and his father, who had already united a majority of Kalee under one banner.
  6. X-Pyre Industries If you couldn't set it on fire, you weren't using X-Pyre -advertising slogan Founded by an ex-mandalorian known as Rakk Atha, X-Pyre is a weapons company that manufactures and produces an exclusive line of pyrotechnic devices. Through the discovery of Worm-Spit the company, while small, became popular with several military groups, including the Sith Empire and the Rebellion. While the company declares it is on the side of the law and believes order above everything, they have quietly smuggled many of their products to people rebelling against the Sith and those of Mandalore, and are not above selling their equipment to known criminals...for the right price. They have even been known to rent out their personal ‘debt collectors’ from time to time. The prime reason why X-Pyre is a success is the development of F-121, or nicknamed Worm-Spit after the infamous FireWorm of Eol Sha. A jelly-like substance, Worm-Spit is easy to ignite, and burns at a high temperature for long periods of time once ignited. It spreads easily, capable of turning most scenes into some form of a hellscape. Different variants are available, with some able to start metal fires, and some able to produce more choking fumes instead of open flames. The production of Worm-Spit is surprisingly simple. Most of the ingredients needed can be found in almost any space port. However, Worm-Spit requires an incredibly pressurised container coated with an unknown substance. If not properly contained, Worm-Spit will either become inert or will combust prematurely. Because of this, only those with X-Pyre products are able to safely use Worm-Spit. Below are listed some of X-Pyre's most popular items, though many more exist. Each item below is listed with what Rank is needed to be used in combat, as well as what NFU classes can use them properly. _______________________________________________________ Worm-Shielding Device (officer or specialist, rank 2): the biggest problem with worm-spit and many fire scenarios is the heat that can get out of control. This small, cuboid device projects a 1 meter domed shield that specializes in absorbing heat, making the situation inside the shield relatively cool. A side effect of this is the ability to absorb incoming blaster shots, and lightsabers. With modification, people can increase the power of the worm shields to increase the area of effect to a 5 meter dome. However, as the shield absorbs heat, it can be overpowered and become inoperable for several hours. About 10 Blaster shots can short-out the shield, and a lightsaber's beam will bounce off the shield, but disable the shield momentarily (1 round). Projectile weapons ignore the shield completely. The shield only affects things that pass through it, not things that both originate and end inside the shield. Worm-plating Mk 2 (soldier, rank 2). While the Mk 1 functions essentially the same as most forms of medium armor, the Mk 2 boasted that it had the capability of withstanding high degree temperatures and several blaster bolt shots. This would allow the user to charge into combat and fire situations without worry. One flaw however is often overlooked. While able to withstand several blaster bolt shots, the armor’s cooling system will fail, and begin to dissipate the heat around the entire suit, causing the suit to practically cook the person inside (leading to the nickname, “Boilers” and “Cookers”). Usually it would take about 5 blaster shots to cause the cooling system to fail, and after that, any more blaster bolts cause the medium armor to overheat rapidly. Dragon Power Armor (rank 3, soldier): The Pinnacle of X-Pyre industries, the Dragon power armor utilizes almost all of their unique technology. Built with reinforced phrik plating on its chest and head, but durasteel covering the rest of the body, this armor contains a grenade launcher for Burn Bombs, six Magma Worm Rifle barrels, two extra large containers for Worm-Spit, and Fire-Storm generators. The complexity of this power armor means that each piece of equipment must be tailor made for its user, meaning each suit is unique. The cost however is ridiculously high however, leading to very few sales for this monstrosity of a weapon. Burner Droids (rank 2, specialist): using the scrapped model of a prototype of a maintenance droid, X-Pyre attempted their hands with droids. The conical shaped droid is made of a specially designed plasteel alloy to help resist heat, and comes equipped with a worm-shielding device to aid others during hellfires. In addition to the tools of gripper arms, heat sensors, and fire extinguishers, each model has a programming matrix designed to calculate the fastest way to put out fires, or in some circles, create more devastating fires. ( rank 2, officer only) For an extra small fee, some models can come equipped with the programming and ability to scavenge and make Worm-spit and properly store it until a container is found. If equipped with Burn bombs, these droids are capable of launching them at foes, though this replaces the fire extinguishing tech. X-Pyre recommends a weekly memory purge, as the droids can quickly develop pyromaniac tendencies. Burn bombs (rank 1, any): Also known as fumeballs, burn bombs contain a pressurized aerosol form of Worm-Spit as well as a small amount of liquid Worm-Spit. When activated, the grenade releases a cloud of choking gas and leaks the liquids. After a minute, before the gas and liquid becomes inert, the grenade ignites itself and the gas, causing an explosion of fire in the area, as well as a small spot of long burning Worm-Spit. Surprisingly, the grenades are reusable, if dangerous to reacquire. Fire-Storm Generators (rank 2, soldier): A series of tubes, sensors, and technology implants attached to medium and heavy armor, this product is illegal on many worlds for the fact that they have been known to earn its namesake. When the user is hit by a lightsaber, blaster or projectile, the attachments launch a stream of lit Worm-spit in the direction of the shot. The fact that this stays active even after the user may have died means that the corpse can become the great source of destruction, with accounts of bodies being launched at the enemy strongholds. Through modification, the user is able to cause the armor to launch a small stream of Worm-spit in a particular direction on vocal command. Due to the pressure needed to generate a firing sequence, it takes a few minutes for the attachments to recharge (making the fire storm Generators usable only once per duel). X-Pyre is currently trying to work on the issue that the generators are unable to handle multiple shots simultaneously, but there is little hope they can overcome this problem. Magma Worm Rifle (rank 2, soldier): The second biggest product of X-Pyre, these weapons are the same size of an A280 Blaster rifle. However, instead of using plasma, these rifles are capable of launching and igniting Worm-Spit at a distance of about 100 meters. Each rifle is sold with 5 pods of Worm-Spit, with each pod able to hold about 10 ‘shots’. The rifle is able to switch between two modes of fire, including the long-distance ‘stream’ mode and the extremely short-range ‘spray’ mode. Smoker drones (rank 1, any). These handheld drones were designed to help incapacitate targets in enclosed spaces. When loaded with worm-spit, the drones will fly around a room, (approx 30 feet diameter from the user) burning the jelly-substance at a rate that produces a large amount of choking smoke and consumes oxygen. Because of this, they have earned the nickname “Oxyeaters” Within a few moments, an entire room can become deadly for those who need oxygen to breathe, making this tool exceptionally handy in sealed places like basements and space stations. When the drone detects there is no more usable oxygen in an environment, they will either return to their user and power down, or move to another area with oxygen to consume. X-Pyre is still attempting at making a version for more open areas, with very little success.
  7. Mozo screeched as the enemy’s first shot nailed the Drone’s gun arm. The force of the shot sent the drone hurtling backwards, barely avoiding the following shots. Mozo eventually regained control of himself and began to pursue his target again. His weapon was disabled now. Had he failed? Had his partner drone and he failed Xar? No! A drone’s work is never done until the requirements are fulfilled. And the target was still alive. But with no weapon, what was the drone to do? With a final honk, Mozo charged at the pilot, his gun leaking a trail of sparks and smoke. In a suicidal attempt, the drone aimed himself at the pilot. Whether by bludgeoning or by tilting, the drone would accomplish his master’s order. Xar on the other hand was enjoying the sensation of witnessing the idiotic droid dying by his own blaster fire. Such was the fate of a lesser being who crossed Xar. However, as the astromech’s flaming body fell apart, screeching its equations about gravity, it made the situation clear to Xar. “Mozo, Char, return to master.” Xar ordered over his communication system. All Xar received was silence. “Son of a jawa-kisser” Xar cursed, realizing either his drones were out of range or unable to respond. The thought that either of them were non-functional didn’t even cross his circuits. After all, they were his drones. They were servants of a superior being. “Calculating time until hitting the ground” Xar spoke out loud, looking at the ground and the flaming wreckage of the X-wing. “14 seconds. Our chances of survival are…” Xar didn’t finish the sentence. No need to admit that he, a superior being, may have made a mistake. With no method of slowing his descent, nor any method of extending his landing, his landing was going to be at terminal velocity. True the planet had a lower gravity compared to most, but it also had a thinner atmosphere, so who knew if his chassis could survive this? Xar grabbed the remaining pieces of the Astromech to adjust himself. Feet first, the droid would sacrifice his lower body. Xar didn’t have to land with all of his parts intact. Limbs, outer plating, claws, most parts of the droid were not needed. In order to survive, Xar just needed his memory cores, located in his head, and his power core, located in his upper chest, to remain functional and connected. “We are a superior being.” Xar claimed as he rapidly approached the ground, disappearing into the smoke of the wreckage of the pilot’s X-Wing. “We will survive. We are superior. We are...superior.” (3)
  8. The first shot that sailed towards Char was crippling, winging and disabling his entire left side. The next two were lethal. The drone’s last noises before the blaster fire squared him away was a beep of pain. The Water Beetle, who was so eager to fulfill any command given to him, fell lifelessly through the air like a stone before exploding in a small ball of fire. Mozo was slightly more lucky as the shot went just to his right. The explosion that occurred barely fazed him, but the beep that had come just a millisecond earlier had enraged him. Having heard his companion’s death cry, he began to honk in anger and try to circle the pilot’s backside, away from her sidearm. It’s gun swiveled a top its body, firing twice at the chair. Xar had ordered her death, and she had killed his partner. Xar would be beyond displeased if both drones failed this task. While the lone drone tried to finish it’s task, Xar was busy with the astromech. It had denied him. It had declared its loyalty to the puny organic being. When the astromech turned off its engines, Xar was surprised. Xar couldn’t help but wonder if the little astromech didn’t care for its own survival. When the astromech attempted the electroshock Xar, he knew that the little droid must have had a death wish. The electricity was enough to short out Xar for about two seconds, forcing him to fall limp and separate from the droid,. As his own sensor came back on, he had a glimpse of the astromech’s own eye sensor. Rage filled the Hunter-Trainer droid once again, forcing him to forget why he had attempted to grab onto the droid in the first place. This little machine was trouble. “You wish to serve your inferior master so well?” Xar cried out as he raised both arms and aimed his forearm blasters. “Then die with her!” At a distance of a meter at most, Xar opened fire, giving two shots aimed at the droid’s eye. (2)
  9. A rise of pleasure resonated in Xar’s circuits as the Hunter-Trainer droid activated his claws and began to tear the wing apart. Like a wild animal enjoying a delicious kill, Xar sliced and tore apart metal. Each piece of metal screeched as it was cut threw and tossed away like trash. Xar cackled to himself. Something about being purely destructive made Xar ecstatic. While it wasn’t as pleasant as hunting some form of prey, listening to fine music, or slitting a lesser’s throat, it was certainly enjoyable and even euphoric. However, the feeling didn’t last. Xar took a glance at the cockpit for just a moment, and the feeling of pleasure vanished. In that moment that didn’t last a full second, Xar caught the pilot’s eyes looking at him. He was expecting a look of fear from the pilot. Some form of terror or panic. But what he received was something different. Determination. The pilot, a fully grown humanoid, was not afraid of Xar. She was well-practiced and following protocol. Xar did not see fear. He saw a what he believed was a feeling of grit and resolve. Xar’s pleasure had been replaced by anger. She should’ve been afraid of him! She was a lesser! He was the superior being! The pilot's cockpit released. Her seat ejected from the doomed ship. Instantly Xar gave an order to the two drones latched onto his chassis. “Hunt her! Now! Track and Kill!” Xar wasn’t sure what caused him to send the drones like it. He wasn’t sure if it was because of his sudden anger at the pilot, because of his pride at being a superior being, or because of his utilization of a hunting chassis, but something inside Xar clicked. Like a dog seeing an animal run away, Xar had to catch the pilot and kill her. He had to sink his claws into her, or see her lifeless body splattered on the ground. He had to prove he was superior, and make her know it. Mozo and Char honked in acknowledgement at their commands. Without a moment of delay, the two detached from their master, activated their repulsorlift engines and took off. While they were drones, capable of handling only the simplest of commands, The drones understood the command ‘hunt’ . The two Water Beetles tried their best to catch up with the pilot, rising to meet her. In a few seconds, both were firing their stun blasters in hopes of stunning her or disabling her seat. Mozo honked with delight at each shot, while Char simply beeped a few times in agreement. Meanwhile, Xar focused on the task at hand. He had to get a safe landing, and there was one hope at the moment. The ship was beginning to point itself downwards. If he was correct, he didn’t have a moment to lose. In one second, Xar grabbed onto part of the wing he hadn’t destroyed and pulled himself up. In another second, Xar crawled closer to the ship’s center, fighting air resistance all the way. He could see the little astromech. Xar's ticket to a safe landing. “You will serve us and help us kill that pilot.” Xar declared loudly as he got into a crouched position, balancing himself on the rapidly descending ship. The astromech launched itself into the air. Xar didn’t care if the astromech was willing to let Xar hitch a ride or not. It didn't have a choice in Xar's eyes. Like the pilot, the astromech was a lesser, and Xar was the superior being. Thus it was meant to serve him. As the astromech launched, Xar leapt upwards and reached out with both arms, claws eager to grab a hold of more metal. He would attempt to grab onto the astromech’s flying little body, and force it to land on the ground safely. As a superior being would do Xar thought to himself. (1)
  10. Xar sighed in annoyance among the pirates. This was not what he was hoping for. When Nok said he had forces ready with the Troig, he expected something a bit better. Something higher class, like combat droids, or highly trained assassins and sabeteours. Not a rag-tag band of merry, most likely inebriated, idiots. “Nok, you better come through on this next payment, or so help us, we will never do another one of these...jobs.” Xar grumbled to the Neimodian next to him. It was a hollow threat though. Nok had paid handsomely already before, and Xar didn’t suspect that would end after today. But did the Neimodian have to be so suicidal? The sewers on Mon Cal were bad enough. This…this was something else entirely. A honking noise distracted the Hunter-Trainer droid. His Water Beetle Drones, Mozo and Char, cocking their stun blasters were attempting to draw it’s master’s attention to the riff-raff around him. The countless potential threats were driving them insane. “Shush you two. They are friendly...for now. Now reattach. It’s nearly time.” At Xar’s command, Mozo went to Xar’s front and Char to his back. Xar held his arms out sideways to give the two drones better access. Small gravity locks clicked in place as the drones quickly turned sideways and embedded themselves. A last minute addition Vizier had made before Xar left Mon Cal. While the blue color scheme of the drones didn’t match his green, and their awkward shapes weighed him down slightly, it was a useful tool in this mission. True, they couldn’t shoot while in this mode, but it was still useful. Xar could now carry his drones when he would be hopelessly uncatchable at their normal speeds. Such as when dropping out of a spaceship and freefalling towards a planet. “Time to suit up” one of the Troig’s heads said. Xar didn’t know which one, nor did he care. He was just glad to get to work finally. Xar didn’t put on the suit that was offered. As a droid, the exposure of space wasn’t a worry. Atmospheric re-entry could be a bit harmful, but Xar calculated that, while he would get singed, he would survive. Besides, his first target was in space. With the hold override activated, a cheer went up amongst the pirates who were partnered with Xar. Mozo and Char seemed to take this as a good sign and honked in praise as well. Xar would have rolled his eyes if he could while leaping out of the ship. He was surrounded by lessers. Xar’s target was in sight. A large, barely working satellite almost in the planet’s manufactured atmosphere. Built as a communications array between this planet and others, it stood as a testament of being able to last despite years and years of neglect. Parts of the hull were made from Phrik even. Normal blaster fire would've ineffective against it. Xar’s mission was simple: Destroy it so that the planet below couldn’t radio for help. The band crashed into the satellite with ease. The pirates activated their magnetic boots to avoid falling off while Xar himself simply armed his claws and grabbed on to a piece of the hull. “Get to work you stupid mynocks! We don’t have all day for this!” Xar barked out. The pirates grumbled but obeyed, arming and attaching detonators. Ten would be enough, especially if they placed them at the... An explosion of noise caught everyone’s attention. Xar looked up to the sky where he had just came from. “What in the maker are those?!?” Ships were descending on the planet. No, they were beasts! Xar shook his head. Those were beasts but also machines. With riders of all things. And following them were actual ships. Xar looked at the pirates, who were dumbfounded. “Get to work you idiots! Don’t let them intimidate you! Move no-” All hope of keeping the pirates under control was lost. The pirates picked up their weapons and began to open fire at the approaching forces. Xar groaned in annoyance. “Idiot lessers...” A strafe of fire began on the satellite. Pirates who were next to the shots were blown away. A few smart beings were beginning to jump off the ship and continue their descent to the planet. One particular crazy pirate actually called out his enemies an inappropriate name before getting obliterated. “Must we do everything ourselves?” Xar lamented. Mozo honked once in agreement. Char rapidly beeped and honked in laughter. Xar sighed. These two were getting a memory wipe when the mission was done. Grabbing one of the last detonators, Xar made a running dash and jumped off the satellite, falling to the planet at a rapidly increasing speed. As the droid jumped off, he armed and chucked the last detonator towards the satellite. Once it would blow up, Xar would then descend to the planet, with the help of his drones of course. All he had to do was release them and let them slow his descent with their own methods of flight. Nothing could go wrong. A miscalculation of the detonator's timer ruined that plan. As the explosion occurred, the force shoved the unanticipated Xar forcefully away. With Laser fire around him and an explosion behind him ,Xar was in a world of light and fire. The momentum made Xar spin head over feet as the droid tumbled through the dogfighting. Over and over his sensors attempted to recalibrate, in a vain attempt at telling where up was up and where down was down. Xar stretched his arms out, grasping at that slim chance of catching something that he could help slow his fall. A dead pirate. One of those metal beasts with a rider. Anything. The possibility of catching a ship with his bare claws were astronomically small. But even so, the chance was there, as the droid was caught on a descending X-Wing’s upper right wing. With a newfound resolve and a determination that only a droid could muster, Xar clutched on as tightly as possible, pulled as close as he could, and clutched onto the bottom wing with his feet claws. “This is much worse then the sewers…” Xar stated to himself. It was bad enough that his entire pirate group failed to listen to him and were now probably dead. Now he would have to replace his claws too. Not to mention he’d have to live with the fact that he owed his circuits to some random pilot. Perhaps he could kill them, as a way of showing thanks. These X-Wings certainly weren't with Nok.
  11. The freshly cleaned hunter droid stood at the edge of the garage building, looking over all that he had attained so far. A mechanic’s workshop, bought in the name of a ‘Rax King’, was now his legal property. Xar had made careful work with it, the large chamber-like room a mechanical workplace. A large operating table where he could rest his body at ease and allow his loyal servant fix or tamper with whatever was needed. Shelves of maintenance, welding and slicing equipment for whatever job was needed. A miniature forge in the corner in case something needed to be welded, though Xar possessed no one who could use it effectively. Everything was constantly polished and cleaned as much as possible. Yes, the money Xar had made from Nok had been put to good use. A base for himself. A place where he could recharge, rebuild, and gloat to his advisor. Still, in all the time since the takeover of the shipyards, Xar had not been surviving on just what he made from Nok. Evidence of this were the bodies in the corner, both unconscious and tied up. Bounties from the local authorities, soon to be turned in for a small profit. There were a lot more of them ever since the Sith takeover. Xar stood before them, studying them. His green chassis, just as polished and clean as ever, reflected the incandescent lights above him. Quietly he tapped his claws on his own chassis, as if in thought. Around him, his two drones circled, awaiting their next order beyond ‘protect’. Vizier, putting some tools away on one of the shelves, noticed this. The more time he spent with his new master, the more he wondered about what made him so unique. He was a droid, of that there was no doubt. But many of his mannerisms were so organic. A droid’s programming, while adaptable, would have never included things like tapping in thought unless its creator wanted it. And from what his lord had said, Vizier could not believe it was an intentional programming. Unless Xar was rewriting himself constantly? “My lord…” Vizier spoke up, waddling over. Xar didn’t look up from the two bounties, a couple of bail-jumpers. The protocol droid made a move towards his owner. Without hesitation, the drones suddenly moved to block Vizier’s path, guns powered up and aimed at Vizier. “That’s enough you two…” Xar raised one arm and closed his claws. The drones honked once and returned to their circling motion. Vizier bowed at his Lord’s graciousness. “My Lord, pardon my obzervationz, but I can’t help but notice you are not pleazed. Are you not zatisfied with your zituation? ” There was a moment of silence, and then, “No, we are not satisfied Vizier. Do you know why?” Xar turned and looked at his advisor, who awaited an answer. “We do not have enough.” Xar made a few strides past Vizier and picked up a tool from a shelf. A worn down wrench. Xar began to spin his claw holding it, then bringing it back to rest the tool in his other claw. Another organic tendency. “We did two very impressive jobs, jobs that few would ever try to accomplish. Jobs that required our superiority. One which acquired us your services. But look at what we have. A single room building. Tools and equipment, but thats all. Not what we deserve” “Indeed sir. You deserve luxurious items, like chrome batteries, and golden claws” Vizier added. He understood how to stay on Xar’s good side. He was originally programmed to make people happy in whatever job service he was a part of. “Indeed Vizier. But look at Nok. Look at what he has attained from our work. A shipyard. Workers. Servants of his own. We came out with three additional droids. He has so much more.” Xar turned sharply, hearing one of the bounties moan in awakening. In a reflexive reaction, Xar chucked the wrench with near lethal force. The crude tool slammed into the bounty’s head, cracking the skull and most likely sending the victim into a death spiral. He would need to be turned in soon. “Its not correct. This situation is not correct. We should have servants like that. And we should be viewed above everyone else. Are we not everyone’s superior?” Vizier nodded in a worried way. His master was upset. If he didn’t come up with an idea, he could be hit by something as well. It hadn’t happened yet, but Vizier had worked with humans enough to know how anger worked. “And now there is the Troig...here to accomplish what we should be doing. Building a criminal empire! And we, representative of Black Sun, are doing nothing about it!” “Perhapz zir…” Vizier started, trying to quiet down the temper. “There iz a way to rize in popularity amongzt the mazzez and power over the Troig. Maybe even Nok az well.” The Hunter Trainer droid looked at his property. “Go on…” Vizier, under Xar’s gaze, motioned to the bounties. “You have captured a total of 43 different bountiez on this watery planet already, 8 which were from other planetz. By my calculationz, your greatnezz haz done something no one elze has on this planet. Perhaps we can uze this…” The protocol droid held out his right hand and opened it up, revealing the holo-pad that Xar had installed. An image of an elderly Mon Calamari, decorated in a purple regal uniform, emerged. “No doubt the Planet’z Zecurity Chief Blo Bodza has heard of your accomplishments already. If he hasn’t, then that is zurprizing. The lazt perzon to turn in 43 different bountiez took a full year to do zo, and that waz before Bodza'z time. You are exquizite.” “Get to the point Vizier” Xar ordered, though visibly enjoying the praise he was receiving by nodding at each compliment. “With your permission, allow me to make engagements with Bodsa. Allow us, in your name, to get you in his services.” “You believe we should work for this inferior overdressed fish?” Vizier waved his other hand and shook his head. “Not for long. Long enough to get headz to look at you in the zame light I zee you my lord. Get some recognition from the planetary government. Perhapz, if you can zomehow get more and more zerventz, zay through a certain droid-loving neimoidian, you can demonztrate how you manage entire zquadz of crime hunting unitz. “ Xar nodded, seeing where this was going. “Good, good Vizier. With our credibility established, Blo Bodsa will place us at his right hand. And should anything happen to him…” Xar’s claws clenched together, imagining the blood that could squirt out. A true position of power. People all over the planet, nay, the entire galaxy would begin to recognize his greatness. And he would have power over the masses. Let the Troig have his criminal empire. As chief of security, Xar could control even more, like which criminals got captured and which ones got to live. And of course, only those who bowed to him would live. “No no no…!” Vizier shouted, then immediately quieted himself. Xar’s sensor bore right through the protocol droid like a laser. “Zir, if he diez unexpectedly, there would be investigationz on investigationz, and no one would allow you to run zecurity until the investigationz died down. Droid fear always rizez in timeszof trouble. But if he was given the idea to retire early on for whatever reazon….” Xar nodded. “Get on it Vizier. Do whatever you need to do to get an audience with Bodsa. We want him to begging for our services.” Vizier bowed slightly. Xar, meanwhile, picked up the two bodies and began to head out the door to deliver these bounties. War was excited now. Now he had a goal. Show the people of Mon Cal his superiority.
  12. Behind Nok a few moments later walked in the blue protocol droid. Despite the protests at not serving battle droids in the cantina, this droid was a protocol droid, and thus the complaints did not comply to him. His lord was a different story, but he had his own ways of being in the building. Straddling through the people, carefully not touching anyone, Vizier glanced around observing all the people. It wasn’t exactly a decent crowd in here. More like low-lives and thugs. No wonder his master didn’t want to be in here himself. Why disgrace himself amongst the lessers? “Ztill, we wizhed we had one of thoze dronez with uz…” Vizier bemoaned slightly as he pursued the blind Neimodian. Why couldn’t he wait for him? Eventually the insectoid protocol droid stood on the side of the Neimodian away from the two headed species. Vizier almost wanted to comment about how this would almost be a two-on-two discussion, but restrained himself. Instead, he placed a hand-held holo-pad projector in front of everyone and turned it on. The image of his lord popped up in front of everyone. Xar glanced at Nok then looked and studied the Troig. Now everyone was here. In truth, Xar was standing on top of the roof of the cantina. In his claws was his own holo-pad, giving the images of the Neimodian and the Troig almost perfectly. Had to love technology. It allowed Xar to meet with people without lowering himself to the locals level. And with his drones circling him and keeping an eye out for enemies, he could focus entirely on the conversation. If something went wrong, then Xar could break into the cantina easily, but Nok could take care of himself as well. It was his Vizier he was a little worried about. Despite the new coat of dark blue paint and the antenna attachment on the side of his head, he was still quite defenseless. “Mr... Zhimzinblimp” Vizier spoke. “Allow us to introduce ourselves. This is my lord, Xar, whom you have briefly seen before. And this Neimodian is Nok. And we have a business proposition for you…” With that, Vizier gestured to Nok, to allow him to continue. Xar simply watched and observed, not betraying any thoughts.
  13. Xar exited Shipyards’ corporate office and took a glance at the body in front of him. A quick scan wasn’t even necessary to tell that this Quarren was dead. Clear liquid was leaking from its head orifices. Its breathing was non-existent. Still, Xar couldn’t help but scan anyways. Several broken bones, including the skull and a few places in the neck. Xar glanced up to the sound of humming motors. The two Water Beetles lowered themselves and circled around their new master, making low and high alternative beeps. “Good job numbers 3 and 5...no no no…” Xar shook his head slightly. “You need better names. No one in my property will be simply named. Number three will go by Mozo. Number five will be Char.” The two drones honked in binaryial agreement. Xar nodded in satisfaction. It felt so good to have drones again. The last drones he had were back on Rodia, and he had to sacrifice them in order to escape that wretched planet. While he wasn’t sorry he had to sacrifice them, he did miss them. They were tools. Tools were meant to be used and disposed of when needed. Still, it was good to be re-equipped. “Zir! Zir!” a voice called out from behind. Speaking of tools…. “Vizier…” The protocol droid waved to Xar from the security shack ahead. As per orders, he was to make sure that no one else tried to enter the building. “My lord, it is good to zee you again. Az of now, no one haz tried to enter the building. Ztill, I believe we zhould get going before… “Yes yes Vizeir, we are aware that city security could be on their way. Lets get going.” The small posse of droids made their way out of the Shipyard’s and began to head down the street. They were to head to a safe house. A mechanical shop whose owner was easily bribed. After the pay day Xar had received, another bribe would be easy. Still, on the way, Mozo honked once. A warning. Xar turned and looked in the direction Mozo indicated. A Troig. For a moment Xar studied the creature. Its two heads puzzled Xar a bit. He had very few records programmed into him about the species. “Vizier, what can you tell us about Troigs on Mon Cal?” The protocol droid looked surprised and a little embarassed at the question. “I..uh...not much my lord. In Shipyards, only a total of five different Troigs were listed visiting this particular city. It would take time and a proper dataport to… “Nevermind.” “My lord, why do you azk?” Xar turned away from looking at the Troig and kept walking. “That being was reaching for something. Possibly a weapon to attack us. Mozo, Char, take secure positions around us. Warn us of any potential threats. And if that Troig follows us.” With that, the posse of droids went towards their safe house.
  14. “Where the kriff did that droid go?!?” Security Chief Oz demanded from his personnel, safely inside the security room. Two personnel frantically called up security cam after security cam, desperately searching for any kind of clue. “Sir, he’s...um… he has…” The Aqualish nearly burst a blood vessel. “Spit it out man! Where is that monster?” The human, pale and shaking with fear, shook on. “He’s...taken out every security camera in the area. “ “What?!?” Oz leaned over shoved the human aside and flipped throught the cameras. His features paled slightly as he realized the human was right. Almost every camera on the second floor had been disconnected, most likely from blaster fire. “What about the drones? What do they report?” The human shook his head. “Nothing sir. They seem to have...wait! Sir! Elevator 4 has been activated. It’s heading to our floor!” The Aqualish squealed in delight. “Excellent! Stop it immediately! Everyone! Follow me! We’ll squash this thing here and now! Except you human. ” The Aqualish glared at the small man, a rookie addition to the security personnel, and one who had not impressed the chief at all with his fearful quivering or his eating habits. “Stay here, and get our drones up here, you lunch-eating quarla. Now let’s move people!” With a nod, four security officers rushed out the locked room and dashed towards the elevator, all holding blaster pistols at the ready. With a few pulls, the officers got the elevator door propped open and leapt down onto the halted elevator half a floor down. Oz snorted in pleasure as he prepared the hatch on top. The droid had nowhere to escape to. Oz counted down with his fingers down from three, then opened the hatch. All of the officers opened fire blindly into the confined room, expecting the droid killer to pop out. Oz shouted for a halt, barely overheard with all of the blaster fire. There was no droid. But there was a noise. “Zir? Zir, iz that security chief Oz? Hello? No shoot! I’m unarmed!” Oz signaled to his men to stay where they were and hopped into the blasted room. It was perfectly empty. But he could hear a voice coming from… The small hologram projector on the wall dinged to life, presenting a representation of an insectoid looking protocol droid. “Bugs!” “Zir, my name is V1-Z…” “Shut it you overpriced calculator. Where’s the droid?” “Zir, my name is not Bugz, nor am I a calculator. I'm a surveyor and an accountant. And according to zection 23 of the..." “Where is the droid?!?” Bugs sighed as he reached up and scratched where his restraining bolt had been removed. He had hoped there would be a bit more protocol in this endeavor. Not to mention a little respect. Oh well. “The attacker, who is known as Xar, has sent me to make a demand. Surrender to the superiority of The Great Xar, or die a pathetic death. ” Oz growled at the hologram, not noticing the missing piece of metal on the droid’s chest. “I swear when i find you, i’m going to tear you apart to your bolts you stupid little… Oz stopped suddenly. The elevator had shifted. The safety features of the room had been remotely turned off from somewhere. Shouting and laser shots were heard from above. Oz looked up and saw just in time a green plated robot, covered in dust from moving through an air vent, activating his claws cand cleanly slicing through the metal cord that held the elevator up. “Good day zir. It waz not pleazent working for you.” _________ Xar watched as the elevator fell two and a half stories down. The men who had stood on top and dared to fire upon him screamed the whole way down, right up until the noise of metal crashing could be heard. The men on top were most likely dead. Anyone inside either had serious injuries or were dead as well. Such was the fate of inferior creatures. Xar began his ascension back up the cable to the third floor. It was an easy task to make his way to the security room, shoot the last guard and take control of the building. Despite being called a security room, there were very few measures taken to prevent hacking in the room directly. Made sense. With a look over all the security cameras, Xar instantly located his target. Hars was on the rooftop, as well as with about 20 other employees, 3 security guards, and 5 drones. Xar chuckled. Easy. “Drones, you have some new commands…” Xar commented. “Attack Chief Financial Officer Hars Volda. Then everyone else.” Xar then proceeded to just watch the action unfold. The employees began to scream as the drones turned on their wards. Stun shot after stun shot fired, a cacophony of energy sending each person into unconsciousness. The guards fought back valiantly, but in the end they were not ready for the attack. Still, they did manage to knock out three of the five drones. After the drones had stunned everyone, they continued to fire again and again at the targets, just to make sure. Xar nodded in approval. These drones worked well. They reminded him of the drones his own model was supposed to work with. Perhaps Xar had just gotten another bonus with this job. “Drone numbers… 3 and 5...” Xar shook his head. He would have to rename these things. “Now push the Chief Financial officer over the edge of the building, as well as two other random employees. Then fly down to the front entrance and wait there. You will obey all the commands of the superior RHTC-560 Hunter Trainer droid you meet there.” And with that, Xar signed off the security channel. He reached up and activated his communicator, this time to his now second newest asset. “Vizier, you will meet us and our newest drones at the front entrance.” “Yez great and magnificent Xar!” the protocol droid exclaimed, happy to have been given a smidgen of respect and an honorable nickname. Xar nodded again to himself. At least this one knew who was superior and wasn’t afraid to sell it. He would do well. “Nok…” Xar continued on his other channel. “The deed is done. We are leaving now”
  15. Xar huffed in annoyance when the message came through. “Finally” he said to himself and spun around and aimed at the security guard. The man tried to draw his pistol out on Xar but wasn’t quick enough. Xar’s newly fixed arm-mounted blaster fired twice, once at the man’s neck, then again at his head. The guard, an older quarren who was probably only a few months from retirement, fell backwards lifelessly. Xar cursed himself. He could’ve done that in one shot. What a waste of energy. Still, at least the weapon worked correctly. Xar jumped behind the counter where the checkpoint officer had stood moments before and inserted himself into the dataport. Information swirled around Xar as he attempted to hack into the building’s mainframe. Names and IDs, coding numbers, and blueprints were Xar’s main focus. He needed a layout of the building, as well as the number of security forces inside. With this information, Xar could hunt with ease. Xar nodded in approval and disconnected. A plan had been formed. Exiting the small building that was the only entrance in the durasteel electrified fence that separated the small skyscraper from the public, Xar dashed towards the front doors, his chassis glinting in the sunlight of a beautiful Mon Cal day. He calculated there were two ways of doing this. Go through the front and take on more security, or try to sneak up the sides of the building and take the target by surprise. Nok wanted some noise, but Xar also had a sense of preservation. “We can make some noise along the way though with a mixture of both…” Xar concluded as he jumped and bashed through the glass doors. Security alarms began to blare as glass and droid landed on the ground. Cries from guards sounded as they drew their holstered blaster pistols to stop this sudden attacker. Xar crouched and leapt over the nearest desk where two guards were beginning to take cover. His claws impaled just below their throats. Once on the ground again, the droid deactivated the vibroblades, clutched, and pulled swiftly, tearing flesh from flesh. “We will never stay clean, will we…” Xar peaked out from his cover and ducked down immediately as blaster fire filled the area. Two quarren and one human had drawn their weapons and were attempting to keep Xar pinned. There were also two hovering blue drones that resembled a cross between a waterfowl and a beetle, though they were not opening fire. Xar accessed the files on the building's blueprints. This white-floored room had three elevators, one staircase, two hallways to some offices, and a large water fountain in the center of the room. All of the outside walls were glass. There was a waiting area, with metal chairs, as well as the counter that Xar had jumped behind. Xar glanced at the computer system next to him. Perhaps he could take advantage of this situation… Still crouching, Xar plugged himself again into the network, finding the manual controls for the room’s fixtures. Lights, locks, everything. However, Xar was having to go slower with this as he had to split his attention between searching the network and paying attention to where the guards were. The sound of hovering repulsors warned Xar of the incoming drones. With his free arm, Xar briefly stood up and fired twice at the approaching lesser droids, and ducked back down as blaster fire riddled the area around him. Xar cursed himself again. He missed one. Still, the sound of the other falling lifelessly to the ground was pleasant. Xar found the controls he was looking for. “Lights: Dim. Water Pressure: Maximize” Xar commanded. The room darkened slightly. A loud chugging sound could be heard rumbling through the floor. The guards stopped firing and looked at the fountain. For a moment there was silence, then the fountain exploded with water everywhere. At that moment Xar popped out from behind his cover and rapidly fired over and over again. The drone went down first, then the guards. A few shots were wasted as Xar didn’t properly calculate his own momentum from standing up so quickly, but he did hit all of his targets. Xar emerged from his spot and moved slowly to the elevator as the alarms in the room continued to blare. But first, he aimed once more and the security cameras in the room and fired at will. So far so good. A short while later, Xar found himself climbing up the elevator shaft. As of now, Xar believed that the security forces had no way of identifying where he was going. If he took an elevator, that would give away his position, but if he climbed, he would have some more time. Despite the work of having to climb an elevator shaft, Xar wasn’t as annoyed as before. In the sewers, he was being a guide and a leader. He was working through sewage and fecal matter, and there was no clear enemy, nor respect. Here though, Xar was working in a civilized environment, hunting a prey like a superior predator would. And he was doing it alone for the most part, and with the respect that came with it. Nok was in a way, acknowledging Xar was capable of doing this task, and was paying as such. Hanging off an edge where the elevator doors stood, Xar activated one of his claws and began to cut slowly through. The door was made of a cheap alloy, so his vibroblades had little trouble getting through, though Xar lamented he would need to replace the claw after today. Xar pushed through and entered an abandoned hallway. Xar studied the hallway curiously. It split off into many corridors, which in turn split off into multiple offices, break rooms, corridors, and closets . No doubt this was the accounting floor of the building. But it was eerily silent, and Xar could only see one heat signature that was coming in his direction. Where were all the people? Xar slowly made his way towards the signature. Quietly, Xar crept forward. He could hear it now. The stepping of feet on padded carpet. The movements of gears and joints. A droid! Xar whirled around the corner and aimed his forearm-blaster towards the large eyes of an insectoid faced robot. “Ah! Pleaz, don't zoot me! Unarmed! I’m Unarmed!” The droid begged, raising its arms above its head in surrender. Xar looked the being over. It was an odd thing. Its head and most of its body structure matched that of an insectoid species, very similar to a verpine. Its Sky-blue painted chassis was tarnished in places, but overall it was in good health. “Who are you? Where is everyone?” Xar demanded, not lowering his weapon. “Oh! I am the Siak-Series Protocol droid V1-ZR, though almozt everyone around here calls me bugz. A derogatory name to be zure, but as they own me and my proteztz have gone unheaded and that people do not follow the regular droid rights rulez, I am forced to… “The employees! Where are they?” Xar shook his arm, drawing the droids attention back to the gun before it went too far explaining itself. “Oh! Yezzz…” The droid nodded as it buzzed out the words. “Due to an inzident beyond my knowledge, people are following protocol F53, where in the caze in an emergency of a firefight, employeez are required to evacuate to one of three secure locationz on the premizes. “ “What?” Xar asked in disbelief. Of course it wouldn’t be this easy. How could he have been so stupid. Of course they would have a backup plan, and since Xar had attacked the front doors, the employees would go to a secure location until local authorities could help. Of course, with the Sith, who knows how long it would take until that occurred. “We zaid that all employeez are required to evacuate…” Xar looked the droid over again, wondering if he should just kill it and be done with it. Or perhaps he could have a use for it. “Where are the locations?” Slowly, feeling like there was no more threat, began to calmly explain. “The firzt location is underground, accessible by elevator 1A and by staircase A1. The second is the security control room, which iz on the third floor with its own special elevator to a sub basement. This area is only accezzable by identification…” Xar nodded. That made sense. It would possibly be the only location where Xar could figure out where his target was. “And the final location iz the rooftop. In cazez of fire, employees are to avoid theze locationz but in cazes of gaz leakage, employees are required to only avoid the rooftop. However, in the case of wild animal attack…" Xar ignored the protocol droid’s droning on and on about how the building worked. Instead he pulled up his own blueprint files and plotted out a course. “Nok? We have a command for you.” Xar spoke into his communicator. “Get to the basement secure spot. They’ll let a blind neimoidian like you inside without worry. Perhaps there are more people you need to exterminate down there. Or you may want a plausible excuse for avoiding us. We are heading to the security control room…” Xar stopped and whirled around. The sound of drones approaching had caught his attention. Taking cover around the corner, Xar began to open fire as several small Water Beetles and two guards charged down the hallway firing away. As he did so, V1-ZR screeched and tried to hide next to Xar, chitterring nervously about the benefits of organized building codes. “Stupid little pests. Don’t they know our superiority? We should be commanding them!” The insectoid droid looked up. “Even if you take them out zir, there may be more reinforcementz along the way. Might i zuggest an idea…” Xar looked at the droid after shooting down one of the drones charging towards the duo. If the droid’s idea was good, perhaps it would live a little longer.
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