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Nar Shaddaa


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As the black scarab plummeted towards the surface, the warriors aboard the Rabid Muumuu gave out a victory cheer. Their enemy had lost control and were falling to their doom. Their souls had been defeated, and the ancestors of each kaleesh on board would nod in approval. Death had been dealt to the enemy, and they remained. 

 

Agent Qessax however stood perfectly still, eyes widened with horror, and panic began to set in.

 

"Do not stop yet!" Qessax commanded, sobering his men instantly. "We are not out of range! Get us out of range now! Full speed away from the scarab! Loose all scrap and move!"

 

The crew obeyed. Only now under their commanders orders did they see the threat that remained. 

 

The explosion rocked the rapid muumuu like a canoe on a title wave. Agent Qessax grabbed the control panel and braced himself as the ship tumbled and shook over itself. Only the distance and the fully charged shields saved the ship from complete destruction, as everyone aboard stumbled and fell over themselves, crashing into panels, walls, and floors.. 

 

"Damage report!"

 

The damage was severe. Engines were knocked out. Shields were completely fried. They were sitting ducks. 

 

Fear began to set in again in the Imperial agents mind, working in overdrive. 

 

"Get those engines working immediately. I don't want to be picked off in our hour of victor-"

 

Qessax stopped. His men were no longer cheering, nor frantically clinging to their posts like scsred animals. 

 

They were laughing. 

 

Qessax looked down and realized why. His black imperial uniform, usually pressed and well taken care of, had completely ripped along the sides and past his crotch, revealing everything underneath. 

 

Qessax, after a moment of comprehension, began to laugh too. 

 

"What's the matter you cowards? Ashamed of seeing a rabid muumuu on the rabid muumuu?"

 

The laughter broke into a roar, as everyone cheered, chanted and danced in victory. Each warrior, tense to the very end, relieved themselves of all the stress that had been built up. They had won. They were victorious. True, the costs had been great. Possibly too great for some. But for the kaleesh warriors, who were accustomed to small fire fights and raids, this was a tremendous victory. 

 

His elder brother handed the agent his cape to cover up. Having done so, Qessax kicked his boots off and stretched his clawed toes on the metal floor. It wasn't like any imperial would be mad for breaking dress code at this point. All of his clothes had been aboard the…

 

Qessax instantly sobered up as he looked at the wreckage of the Constantine. His mentors corpse laid somewhere amongst the wreckage. A wave of grief washed over the warrior, nearly collapsing forward onto a control board. The one saving grace that prevented Qessax from breaking down completely was his own personal beliefs. The Grand Moff had earned a worthy death after a worthy life of battle. He would be immortalized in kaleesh tales to come. 

 

"Men…" Qessax spoke out. "Get the ship's engines working, and acknowledge all orders sent to us. We will move to the rendezvous when we are able

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Kirlocca stood in the cockpit of an MC-24a light shuttle. His eyes focused as they scanned the space around the area. Barely avoiding the crash of the massive Black Scarab, the shuttle was attempting to find its way off the planet, only to take on an Imperial Officer and a Jedi Master at the last minute to aid them. The owner of the ship looked back at the Wookiee every so often, wondering why he was so pressed on searching for someone. He was a Rodian with blueish skin. He seemed very much annoyed with the process, something that Kirlocca did not notice. 

 

He instead kept his eyes moving from flash and item that came within view as he continuously searched with the Force for where Raven could possibly be. Her presence seemed to be nowhere, but for his own mind, it meant something else then what everyone else in the shuttle clearly knew. 

 

<<We need to get closer, I’m not sensing her. You can do that, I’ll guide you. >>

 

The Imperial officer looked for a moment at Kirlocca before turning his head back to the comms that he was working on. The Rodian pilot looked back at the officer with a plea in his face. He held up a single finger for a second before turning towards the Jedi Master. His own brown eyes flickered with hesitation. “All reports are coming in and being finalized. The Empress fell. The only ship that could have potentially saved her has fallen as well. She’s gone.” The words, while already known to the officer, still held a heavy tremble to it. He feared the words wouldn’t be heard from the Wookiee, as he seemed deep within denial of the situation. The very fact that he just stood there for a good minute made the situation even worse. After the long minute passed, he finally spoke, without breaking from his locked view. 

 

<< No. She’s alive. Those reports must be false information attempting to steer away any attempt of a rescue. An enemy ship must have taken her captive. We must pursue it. What’s the nearest hostile planet? I bet we could arrive and take them by surprise. Easy rescue mission. >>

 

The Rodian looked panicked as he turned towards the officer, wanting support. He clearly didn’t want to do anything other than go on living his own life, not get sucked into some Jedi Master’s delusion. Knowing that the choices were very limited by this point, he walked over to stand next to Kirlocca to whisper into his ear. 

 

“Master Kirlocca, it would be slightly unwise to risk the lives of civilians in a dangerous rescue mission. They are untrained. Perhaps we can have them drop us off on some nearby world to collect a ship ourselves before we go on?” Even as he spoke, he thought upon his own family. He didn’t doubt that the lack of reporting would cause his own name to be listed as one of those who have gone MIA during the last battle… But he feared that the Jedi Master on his current path would endanger others if not having someone to subtly give him guidance to avoid such a mistake. He didn’t see many other outcomes to let the Rodian go on with his own life. The Wookiee looked for the viewport to the officer a few times before speaking. 

 

<< Two would give us better chances of sneaking onboard an enemy ship. And maybe a less recognizable ship would also better suit us… I agree - Pilot, take us to Bothawui so that we may pursue Raven’s captors. >> 

 

Kirlocca returned to looking instantly out the viewport, while the Rodian gave a subtle thank you gesture to the officer for directing the Jedi away from taking over his life. As the ship turned to make it jump, the officer simply sat down and wondered what sort of hell he just signed up for.

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The monstrous Sith battleship seemed to quake beneath the onslaught of pure Imperial Allied strength. Even if it was the last vestiges of it. They did not let up. This was their world and their people. They would defend it.

 

In the silence of space, the entire crew of the Ancillary Justice watched as the Scarab began to move. When asked after the fact, they would all swear they had heard the mighty ship groan as it’s massive durasteel flexed and bowed with it’s death throws. Initially, the dwarfed Victory I doggedly pursued the Sith flagship, pouring violent retribution into her sundered hull and vulnerable exposures. It was a rain of justice, born in the backs of those who stood for the peoples of the Outer Rim. Justice that came after years of waiting, years too long. They did not stop until the enemy warship pierced the atmosphere of Nar Shaddaa. Vangar grimaced in pain, while others’ faces twisted in horror at the detestation they were witnessing unfold before them, powerless to stop it.

 

Gravitational dampeners strained and the G-forces of their rapid deceleration and groaning upward leap threw men who were not prepared from their feet. The commander himself stood only because his clawed hands gripped his console with such force that they left deep indentations in the cool metal frame. The resulting inferno was a peephole into hell itself as the ship churned back into the dwindling fray, buffeted by the shockwave and carried on it towards the safety of the void of space.

 

”Captain,” Vangar spoke, his voice emotionless and firm. The navyman who commanded operational control of the boat turned to face Vangar, Moff of the Anoat Sector and by such his de facto superior. “Let us not do that again.”

 

”Aye sir!” He responded with a curt nod and the hint of a smile as he caught the subtlety of the Moff’s sarcasm. Nobody would want to undergo such a task again, even if the Ancillary Justice could survive it. “We are receiving instruction from Admiral Beck. All craft are to complete their tasks and remove themselves to the rendezvous point.” 
 

Vangar turned his cold reptilian eyes to the ship’s golden-skinned commander. “Then our task is not complete. Not as long as one Sith attack craft remains. Not as long as one child remains ensnared in the hellfire below. What is the status of our ship?”

 

A feminine voice from the engineering console called out. “Shields are at 63%. Armor is holding. There is a reactor leak in Section 7 but it is being contained. Starboard thrusters are operating at 23% for the time being. Med bays are stable and awaiting patients. Overall, we are better than most out there.”

 

A smile twisted across the plated face of Cloud City’s Baron Administrator. The report was positive and as he looked about the bridge, morale stood high, even as those here had witnessed the absolute destruction and devastation of those about them. “So long as the ship stands, so does the hope of tomorrow. Captain, you know our orders.” With that, Vangar turned, the cape of his office fluttering behind him, and walked to to locked door that connected the bridge to the conference room where rescued officers now sat discussing the battle and fate of the universe. With a palm scan the pneumatic locks gave way and the door opened allowing the Barabel access. They closed behind him and the heavy metallic thud of the locks reengaging echoed behind him to draw the eyes and silence of the room.

 

With his booted feet thumping softly on the polished decking, Vangar made his way towards the podium. He took it heavily, standing behind it to regard the men, women, leaders that were assembled before him in various states of battle weariness. “Comrades. Countless lives, lives greater than some entire star systems, have been lost today. Blood and souls shed into the void that can never be replaced. Not one here has not felt that loss on some real level. Yet, each of us fought on. We had our orders. We stood shoulder to shoulder with brothers and sisters and strangers, united in a common goal, a common belief; hope.” The sharp toothed lizard man paused, emotion swelling up inside until he could regain control over it. Only then did he continue. “The battle is not over. Sith warlords flee into the blackness between stars to lick their wounds, too afraid to die for their cause. They are cowards. They are weak. The scourge of the Outer Rim, the Black Scarab, burns even now where it crashed into the cityscape of Nar Shaddaa. Still, there are a few, zealots, true believers and brainwashed acolytes who continue the fight. Our fight is not over. The people of Nar Shaddaa, the Rebellion, hope, still has use of us. Forces of the Imperial Remnant have been ordered to regroup at the evacuation point, undoubtedly we will pursue the frightened Sith to whatever rock they crawl under. We will squash them like the parasites they are. Admiral Beck still stands to command the forces of her majesty, the Empress. Empress Raven, Grand Moff Kolchak, and many more have been lost to us. General Slaughter’s ship floats alive, but barely and we do not know the status of the Alliance’s great leader. For every leader that has been lost, ten lives have been saved. It is for those lives that we will press the fight. Your men in the mess halls have been fed and uplifted. The bays of the Ancillary Justice are crammed with fighters and transports. I ask you, if you still have the strength, stand, purge this system of all foes, rescue those who have been struck down into the dust, bury the dead. Until death and darkness are brought to heel here, our fight is not over. If you have questions, speak freely now. If not, I bid you, go, serve, lead as I know you are able.”

 

Aboard the bridge, the captain began to direct the ship to begin pursuit of the few remaining Sith craft. Keying up the comm unit, the middle-aged gold skinned humanoid, directed a message to Admiral Beck, “Admiral, the Ancillary Justice, under the direction of Moff Vangar of the Anoat Sector, has elected to remain and see to it that the few remaining Sith fleet elements are brought to heel. We will evacuate all that we can and then meet you at the rally point.” The captain offered a crisp salute.

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“Sir, the ship is ready to move now. We have engines running and should last one more jump”

 

Qessax nodded at the warrior and breathed a sigh of relief. At least that had gone down without issue. 

 

“Sir, we are receiving word from another ship…” 

 

Qessax looked at the nearest control panel and raised an eyebrow. A squib ship, heavily damaged in the firefight, was barely limping itself closer to the Rapid Muumuu. Qessax was actually partially impressed. With no engines, the squibs were using their own tractor beams to pull themselves to pieces of debris and swing themselves closer. 

 

“It seems they are requesting our services to get to the rendezvous point.”

 

Qessax laughed once. “And the only reason they do so is because we have tow cables like them!”

 

After a brief looking at his brother, Qessax nodded. 

 

Rabid Muumuu to Sith 7-8” Qessax started

 

“Stupid name” the elder brother mutterred, who received a hand wave from his sibling. 

 

“Get close and we will hook our ships together. Transfer your controls to us, and we will get you to Ylesia. 

 

“It is a stupid name”

 

“Ya ya…” Qessax rolled his eyes. He couldn’t really argue with that point.  Shortly afterwards, both ships jumped into hyperspace. 
 

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The next few minutes were like a fever dream that passed in and out of Slaughter’s consciousness, to be remembered only upon waking in the indecent hours of the morning. He vaguely remembered clutching at the elbow of one of the medics and snarling something combative--and then he caught a glimpse of himself through a chance reflection in the medic’s spectacles. His body looked… broken. His abdomen had been torn open by transparisteel shards, one of which were glinting out of the viscera as a polished spear. A pool of blood surrounded his body despite the best efforts to stop the bleeding.

 

A heavy impact and another jolt of pain pierced through the cloud of painkillers. He glanced around and saw the familiar boxy interior of his command shuttle--and a portable bacta tank, bubbling ominously with a translucent ooze. Slaughter raised a hand in a vain attempt to protest--he couldn’t breathe. A ghastly, gurgling noise escaped from his throat.

 

Curses responded all around him. One set of hands placed a mask and an irritating trail of plastic tubing down his throat. Two more lifted his body from the stretcher and shoved him into that sinister pink fluid. A warm prickling sensation went up his arm--

 

--and then he was out.

 

The LAAT/i transport raced from the hangar, into the chaos surrounding Black Scarab and her escorts. The airspace was so cluttered with escape pods and starfighters and munitions that the unescorted shuttle went unnoticed even after it cleared the debris field. Only a pair of passing TIE Defenders on a strafing run managed to catch its transmissions through the interference and broke from their attack to form up on its sides. Though an awkward, unmaneuverable craft, the LAAT/i boasted an impressive top speed and it raced through the blackness, chugging urgently towards Fidelity.

 

Upon breaking the magcon field of Slaughter’s flagship, the TIE Defenders broke upwards to rejoin the fight.

 

An entire team of medics and droids were awaiting the Admiral once the transport settled. One of them spoke urgently into a comlink as the bacta tank was carted away towards the medical bay. “We have the Admiral, sir. They got him into bacta, but we don’t know enough yet. Crazy son of a… He actually kept command with those wounds.”

 

((@Beck Pilon))

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”Welcome Captain,” Tilt heard a strong low woman’s voice called out from a podium at the head of the table before a real time screen that displayed the naval battlefield outside. “Please tell us what you know of the Misercordia. What did you see? Do you know anything of the Empress? The battle goes poorly. Sith and Allied craft alike flee the battle, hundreds of thousands more are dead including Grand Moff Kolchak. Where are your men?”

 

Tilt situated himself at the empty seat after being guided by a service droid. He took off his helmet as the droid delivered a steaming cup of caf. He hated black caf, but it was better than stagnant water and it woke him up. Sugar, sweetener and creams were for R&R. He set the helmet to his side revealing the face of a Republic Clone and his expression was clearly showing that he didn't want to be there. 'Swallow it up, p*@#y.'

 

"What I know of the ship was that it was overrun with Sith forces. Imperial and Rebel personnel were being pushed back, messy business, I was knocked for a minute when our transport was shot down within the hangar and my squad and I got separated. From there a small group and I had gathered whoever we could and sealed one of the exits that would further prevent additional enemy units from entering and taking allowed forces by surprise. When one of the combat engineers hacked into the ships security mainframe they reported that Sith were trying to sabotage the escape pods, that's where I and others stopped them, afterward we were ordered to immediately evacuate the ship. My squad got out and are on the ground now, but as for the Kolchak? I heard he died, last time anyone said anything, I don't know how accurate that is."

 

Tilt shook his head as he downed more than half the mug of caf, it was hot and it stung his throat all the way down to his belly. It hurt, but it woke him up and allowed him to focus via pain, "As far as I know of the Empress? Nothing. Just that the main control room was compromised. That's all the information I have, Ma'am, I wish there was more I could give."

 

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