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Rose sat on the bed provided by the Black Sun’s doctors, wrapped in a rough nerf cotton towel, staring at an overpriced datapad, her eyes reading and rereading the message text from Dark. She had heard his rasping voice but had shut off the vocalizers on the datapad to simply read it, the sorrow in his voice had already told her all she needed to know. She blinked once as her eyes fell on the difficult to pronounce name of the tusken raider and she could feel her heart plummet through her chest.

 

I couldn't help him, I couldn’t save him.

 

Her breathing was more rapid now and she could feel the shivering cold of a panic attack creeping to replace her broken heart. She forced it back, using the long trained reflexes of Mandalorian warriors. Breathing, focus, calm. But the loss was futile, it was permanent, and it was breaking her. She couldn’t even give him a proper burial or recover her own armour. Her hand grasped the side of the Datapad until the tips of her fingers and knuckles were bright white and the datapad shook in her hand. She didn’t even notice that she was biting her lip until the iron like taste of blood seeped into her mouth.

 

As her vision began to fog over from uncried tears she lay the datapad aside and let them fall onto her hands that were clasping and unclasping on her towel covered lap. The warm tears flowed now and she found herself crying fiercely as the tears and snot dripped down onto the towel.

 

My Darling.

 

This was no Alliance officer knocking on the door of Habitation station 834 with his hat in his hand. There was no warning to save her, and like her mother many years ag,o she let her shoulders crumple and the sobs wracked her slim body until she was exhausted. For a soldier was not coming home and no matter how brief the encounter, she had loved him with her full heart.

 

Her reddened eyes finally blinked and she picked up her datapad to type a response to Dark.

 

“Medical Bay 4, Farstriders Rest spacestation.”

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Behold the Rose of Sharon is burning in the valley 

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“Raider’s Tempest with a shipment of medicine, provisions, and materials, requesting permission to land,” Malin reported over the ship’s comm system. Amara, who was firmly planted in the co-pilot seat, looked back at the Smuggler with wide eyes hidden behind goggles and gasped.

 

“Mal, I thought we were the ‘Bloated Torton.’ Do I need to remember a new ship name?” Amara’s nose crinkled a little as the skin under the nosepiece of her goggles started to itch.

 

Malin, thinking quickly and disabling the audio transmission for a second, looked at Amara with a sense of smug satisfaction. “Nah, this baby has a rotating transponder system. It has a load of different identifications. We could register with anyone who wanted us as different names and go into any system if we wanted to. Obviously, we can’t do that right now because all of the transponders aren’t registered anywhere. However, it does mean that it’ll be easier to run away if we get caught doing something bad.” Malin rubbed at the scruff of hair that had grown on his chin during the flight, adding a subtle reminder to shave to the many things that clouded the space between his ears. “Now do me a favor and be still a moment, Amy. I need to make sure we're clear to land.”

 

Amara scowled but quieted as she watched the ball of sand and dirt shift into view. Malin clicked the audio transmitter back on just as he got an answer from the Mos Eisley comm tower.

 

“You are cleared to land, Raider’s Tempest. Please proceed to the Farstrider’s Rest space station.”

 

A little unsure of himself, Malin paused. He took a moment to get some VFR before spotting the large space station sitting in the sand ball's orbit.

 

“Please proceed to dock 5, freight and transit, thank you.”

 

Malin nodded to the disembodied voice and maneuvered his large turtle-like vessel until it was nestled carefully into the designated docking bay. The docking clamps emerged shortly after and the ship came to a rest with several satisfying thunks.

 

Malin, days of travel wearing down his face, looked to Amy and Celine with a pleasant smile. “Time to christen this new bird with its first job. Care to do the honors with me, Amy?” Malin asked, offering his hand.

 

Amy started for a second but retracted her hand almost immediately. “N-no. I can’t go out there. They’ll find me.”

 

Malin cocked his head to the side. “They?”

 

As if in answer to his question, a knock sounded on the docking bay door, echoing through the ship and interrupting the awkward silence that had begun to set in.

 

Amara flinched and jumped almost a foot into the air. Celine caught her and put her arms protectively around the young Togruta. The finely articulated arms of the droid moved with more grace than her clunky body would suggest. And while it wasn’t aggressive, Malin made a mental note of the droid’s capability. “Alright, Celine. Then can you please keep an eye on her and don’t let anyone in here while I’m gone unless you hear my voice give you a specific catch-phrase over the comms?”

 

The droid nodded. Malin whispered a small phrase to her then ambled out of the docking bay door, arming himself and closing the door behind him as he left.

 

Before he could get more than two steps onto the tarmac and just as the hissing of his closing ship’s door eked out, Malin was stopped by a colorful trio of thugs.

 

The frontman, scraggly and slightly aloof, was a Devaronian. And while it wasn’t immediately obvious, he was apparently the mouth of this cadre of miscreants. He started to make his way toward Malin, his movements slow and calculated. But Malin’s stony gaze rattled him, causing him to stop in his tracks and look to the others that bookended him.

 

“So, what you three doin outside my boat?” Malin asked, a small scowl playing on the edge of his lips.

 

You could hear wool scraping across durasteel with how silent the next moments were. Malin almost thought they didn’t hear him when the Devaronian finally discovered his stones and spoke up. “We’re here to collect the girl.”

 

“Girl? What girl? I may be a pretty man, but I ain’t pretty enough to fit that qualification, thank you.” Malin said, his mouth bending into a little smile. “And, if I were, no offense, I don’t think I’d be interested in you. You’re uh… not my type.”

 

The Devaronian visibly paled and his two Houk friends laughed a little, despite their earlier stoicism.

 

When his composure returned, a touch of deeper scarlet mingled with the lines of the Devaronian’s face. “My name is Devarus Kathek, and we are here to retrieve Mr. Quelos’ property. He is a very wealthy individual with stock on Thyferra and a fair shake of the Outer Rim. I’m sure he wouldn’t mind paying you for turning over his property. He might even… entertain… your seemingly odd preferences.” Devarus smiled a slimy smile at his own attempt at humor. But Malin wasn’t smiling this time.

 

“No one is ‘property,’ least of all, a kid. Now, I don’t mind entertaining your strange thoughts. But if you think either of you is going to step on my ship or manipulate me into giving over a living breathing being, pain is going to be the least of your worries.” Malin’s fingers hovered over the steel of his slugthrowers. Each finger stretched in time and he breathed easy through the manufactured air provided by the Farstrider's life support and HVAC systems.

 

The Houks eyed each other warily while the Devaronian scoffed.

 

“You’re bluff-” The Devaronian attempted to say and then keeled over in pain. The Houks didn’t know what had happened, but they heard a noise and rushed at where Malin was standing. The shot had barely echoed when Malin sidestepped the right Houk, narrowly avoiding his advance, and lowered himself beneath the left’s center of balance, causing him to flip end-over-end and slam into the metal of the Bloated Torton’s hull. Malin held both of his slugthrowers in his clenched palms and stared daggers beneath the rim of his wide-brimmed hat.

 

“I’m terrible at gambling. I never bluff.” Malin’s words were iron. He clipped each syllable as if the weight of every word was important.

 

The Devaronian, a shocked expression printed across his face, stood up and gaped at the open hole that had been shot through his horns.

 

“Next time, the shot will be lethal. Get your scrawny piece of kriffing druk out of this space station. NOW.” Malin fired a warning shot off the hangar walls and watched as the three thugs scurried out with their hands on their heads.

 

“We’ll be back with more you kriffing junker. We’ll be back!!!” Devarus said as he ran and then disappeared down the nearest corridor.

 

I don’t doubt it. Damn it, Malin, what have you gotten yourself into this time?

 

When he looked down, he was grasping at the small locket around his neck. A little F shined in the bright light of the hangar. Docking officials, who were ‘conveniently’ misplaced during his altercation were now making their way over to his ship and ushering the transfer and stevedore of his cargo. He stayed just outside of the open door until the process was complete, monitoring his surroundings for a resurgence of Devarus or any of Mr. Quelos’ thugs.

 

“Malin, as I live and breathe, what're you doing here?”

 

The voice was familiar but Malin couldn’t quite place it. When he turned to face the newcomer, Malin was swept into a large sweaty hug. A big Besalisk face greeted him with a wide grin and its arms tugged tighter before letting the Smuggler down, letting the color return to his face.

 

“Rufus, what’re you doin’ here? You working for Black Sun now?” Malin asked, still eyeing the docking bay for signs of trouble.

 

“Yup. They made me a provisional docking official while they scramble to staff this beast. It’s a miracle they managed to turn this hunk of junk into something practical in the first place. I can’t say I was their best decision. But I definitely think they’re doing great things for this ball of sand.” Rufus’s smile was echoed by the number of chins that rested beneath his fat lips.

 

“Good ol’ Rufus, ever the optimist. Think you could hook me up with someone with cargo to move?” Malin asked, looking over at one of the dock workers as they almost dropped a crate full of valuable medical supplies.

 

“Well, first, here is your cut for the delivery you made. Black Sun wishes to show their appreciation for contributing to their efforts out here on the Outer Rim.” Rufus said. And although it wasn’t sarcastic, Malin read a bit of sarcasm in the words ‘Black Sun’ and ‘appreciation.’ “Now, I can’t promise you anything official. But I can put in a word to my boss and see if he can find you some work. Just hang tight here for a little bit, try not to cause any more trouble, and I’ll see what I can do. Alright?”

 

“Aww Rufus, you know me, what could possibly go wrong?”

 

Rufus’ jovial smile shifted into a knowing grimace.

 

“I seriously wish you hadn’t’ve said that.”

Edited by Guest

 

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I sat there in silence as I contemplated upon what had happened, where I had went wrong, the sights of Rru and Rose haunting even my thoughts as my hands held that blasted helm, awaiting the other two droids to return. In a moment of fit, I threw it, the mythosaur bone clanking against the plating of my ship's innards hull as I paced. Clenching my fist, I pounded the upward clench into my forehead, the words "Stupid, stupid, stupid" escaping my lips as I did.

 

That was when my comm unit chirped, her location echoing a deep sigh of relief exhaling from my lungs. Quickly replying, I left her with little words. "Be there soon." And soon it would be, as the two droid returned with what little they were capable of recovering. Adorning my armor, I lifted my ship toward the upper atmosphere and toward my new destination, leaving this cursed world behind, as well as the scars left upon myself and those I had left upon it.

 

It wouldn't be long before the doors to Rose' room hissed open and I stood before her, a different sight than what she had beheld before. My helm hung on my hip next to the Mythosaur Mask we were meant to retrieve, revealing my eyeless sockets that spoke of who I truly was, the armor i wore ancient. The man before her was not Atlas Dark, but Canderous Bralor, the last of Clan Bralor. And this man stood before her broken hearted. Reaching my hand out toward her, almost as if in disbelief, i caressed her face only but for a moment before i crashed to my knees as tears flowed from my face and my head slouched toward the durasteel floor.

 

Few words escaped my lips, but the echoed of my sorrow, of my grief, of my broken heart. And even though she stood before me, there would forever be an ache in my own heart for the one that was not. "Truly. I am sorry Rose. I failed the both of you."

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Formally Known as Hunter Of Shadows/Dark

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Rose sat, her hands clasped in her lap as she listened to the surroundings of the medical facility. The relentless beeping from the monitor attached to her left arm signalled her fluttering heart. But how did it beat so relentlessly when it was so broken? Her breathing was slowing as she stared distantly at those two pale hands, slowly digging the nail of her left forefinger into the palm of her right hand until a spot of blood curled to drip onto the towel, turning the white fabric crimson with every drop. A rueful stain that expanded millimeter by millimeter as she pushed harder and the blood dripped past her cuticle, but even that pain did not give her clarity of mind, so she stopped. She withdrew her finger with its bloody mantle and pressed it against her pale lips, tasting the coppery metallic of the blood.

 

At least that taste was familiar and it had been her companion since the first time her mother had struck her. Except this was no overturned flask of nerf milk to be boxed around the head and neck over, this was the death of someone most loved and she was hoping to rely on. And here she was, returning like a dog to its own vomit, the well practised ritual of self harm to bring clarity to a mind that was fractured. The tears came again, unbidden, and she pressed the hem of the towel covering her against the bleeding hand as tears covered her vision with their watery mist. Then the muscles in her back seized up, straightening her painfully from her slouch and in the pain there was a voice.

 

“If you despair over the loss of such a brave warrior then you are Arasuum. He is in my legion and you will meet him when you return to me with ten million souls reaped in my harvest.”

I will see him again?

 

“If you turn from this pitiful display and bathe yourself in the blood of a Crusade and return to me, carbon scored and covered in the blood of the unworthy you will walk in the halls of my kingdom arm in arm.”

 

The muscles in her back relaxed but she kept her back straight, with her shoulders back. She stood as her vision cleared and the voice answered her question before she could think it.

 

“Qat”

 

Qat Chrystac it would be then. The last bastion of the faithful and she would venture there to offer her fealty for this crusade. Her mind was finally clear, and though her hand still bled, she was at peace with the dead of her beloved. The certainty in her mind was shocking and she was for the first time in her life convinced of where her life would lead her. She had an objective, a life to live, and millions of unworthy to kill.

 

The door slid open behind her and she turned, seeing the Bounty hunter that had brought them to fight the dragon but he stood in a face known to her from her time on Mandalore. Canderous Bralor, the feared, eyeless, and the lasted of a cursed clan. But still he was wore the face of a friend, forged in battle and death together, and his real identity was shocking but she felt no different about him. He was as broken as she had been minutes before and his tears were wet upon his face.

 

She hesitated as two Black Sun sergeants wheeled in a very expensive set of armour, leered at her, then were quickly shooed from the room by the medical staff who kept a long distance away from the pair of mandalorians.

 

She extended her bleeding hand and touched him on the forehead, an inch below his hairline. She leaned forward to press her other hand upon his short blond hair whispering her next words through a throat worn raw from sobbing.

“You are not a failure Canderous Bralor, and you did not fail us, though we perished I am reborn with a purpose. I release you from sorrow. For in my death Ha’rangir spoke to me and sent me back to do his will. Canderous…” She let her voice trail off as her bleeding hand began to move, tracing a trail of blood down to his nose then to his lips, then up to touch below his eyes and across. Tracing a mandalorian visor of blood.

 

“You are Mandalorian brother, I have a purpose and I would like you to join me in scourging the galaxy of the unworthy.”

 

She leaned forward and pressed her own forehead against his before releasing him. It was weird request and one that she would not have made unless she trusted him fully. He was her brother in arms now and she stalked to the armour display and let the towel drop to put on the armour weave.

 

“Will you join me brother?”

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Behold the Rose of Sharon is burning in the valley 

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My head shifted toward the sound of the hissing door, my eyeless gaze staring into the unknowing of nothingness as I overheard the footsteps come and go, the moment of leering almost causing my temper to flare just as the attendees shooed the onlookers away. Turning back toward Rose, my heart still filled with grief, I dared not to look upon her form with my forbidden sight, rather awaited her touch as well as her forgiveness.... if I truly deserved such. As as she did, I flinched at the surprise momentarily, and quickly welcomed her touch with a warming heart.

 

"So he spoke to you as well? I questioned, feeling her hand tracing my face, unknowing of the blood until its metallic taste graced my lips, quickly causing me to grab her hand as she finished and tracing it until I found the puncture, realizing that despite her words, my foolishness had caused her more heartbreak than i had thought, a feeling that i too had known too often, especially in Luna. "He visited me upon the dunes, begging my return to his service.

 

No longer had I spoke those words, my hand grasped tightly that of Rose', my form convulsing in a fit of undeniable possession, causing my head to sway backwards and toward the stars, my breathing shallow and grasping for air as something within took hold. And through me, it echoed its grasp into Rose, the words that soon erupted from mouth speaking in near unison to the voice that echoed within her own mind.

 

"Children of my children, hear me now. For I am Kad Ha'rangir, Master of the Crusade and Lord of Purification. Baptize thy selves in my blood..." The unified voices trailed off momentarily as I unknowing slit my thumb upon the Mythosaur helm before reaching upward toward Roses' own face, my blood soaking thumb sliding down her own face from her forehead toward her lips before reaching back up and crossing beneath her own eyes in the same fashion as she had done to me. As the words continued, her blood dried upon my face, I reached for my own helm and adorned it as Ha'rangir finished speaking through me. "And then set forth upon the galaxy in search of my Ani'la Akaan, bathing in the blood of the weak as your crusade unfolds in my name, and in my name alone. Bare witness of my truth, for I am the only truth."

 

Awakening from what felt like a slumber, the words spoken still echoing in my head, I stood up. I looked at Rose gauging if I had been the only one to feel it, but as the attendees scurried away in haste, I knew that I wasn't. There was no doubt in my mind now that both of us were being called into service, only I did not know where. Only that we were bonded now and forever, the ache of my form beginning to mimic her own. And deep down, the fire that I've always starved was beginning to burn brightly, a thirst that I once found unquenchable.

 

"I will answer his call just as you sister."

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Formally Known as Hunter Of Shadows/Dark

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The possession was an interesting sight to behold and Rose considered its validity for a moment before considering that Kad Ha’rangir had the right to speak to and through his dominion as he wished. And his voice was strong and she could hear his conviction. She accepted the cross on her face tasting the blood and she decided she would do the same when any joined their cause, like the knights of old had been blessed by the priests in blood, so too would be the crusaders. She smiled and nodded solemnly before she stepped back to her armour.

 

The armour weave that she wore was skintight, and could withstand vacuum, fire, and freezing cold. It covered her body and clung to her like Karus Silk, showing nearly every line of her body and in that it was very revealing. But it was stronger than her last amourweave, and she slowly began to attach her armour. It was not the sparse armour of the modern Mandalorian as she had learned that lesson. Though there were gaps in which the armourweave could be seen the plates themselves contoured to her body, strongest over her vitals with horizontal interlocking Lames that fit over her thin stomach and abdomen. It still allowed for movement and was made of reinforces plastoid, where the main segments; the helmet, breastplate, vambraces, gorget, abdomen, thighs, and greaves were made of the Mandalorian iron of her adopted people. Blue and black were the colours that adorned her armour and finally when she had tied her kama around her waist she turned back to Canderous who if he had been watching would have gotten a good view. A view that regrettably, Roarroar had never seen.

 

“How do I look? Ready to light the fires of war?” She asked with a sudden flush of embarrassment as she grabbed his arm and began to walk to the shuttlebay.

 

And a shuttle was waiting for them, booked earlier by contract with the Black Sun to take them to Qat, the capital of the Crusaders. Rose would leave this world behind, with all its horrible memories, until she had served her purpose. If she had not died in the attempt, she resigned to herself in secret to come back to the pile of rubble where her darling lay entombed, and slit her own throat over the rocks. Then, she thought, she would be at peace.

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Behold the Rose of Sharon is burning in the valley 

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The Farstriders Rest the crescent shaped space station that hosted the finest illegal gambling halls, trading stations, exotic dancers, and the largest slave market on its lower levels drifted in the orbits of Tatooine. IT also had no ties to the Enigma or prior establishments on tatooine but was only named such a way because its designer, Delta, had thought it was a cool name. That and he had seen some holos about a crescent shaped space station called Montressor Spaceport but hadn't wanted to be sued for copyright infringement. The Black Sun Security officers walked always pair by pair as they patrolled the many kilometer long corridors of the bustling station. It was two of such agents, Melania and Barron Viliksbaren, that escorted the Black Sun Viceroy Yelna to meet the intrepid smuggler Malin.

 

She bowed her golden head as she interrupted his conversation, “The Black Sun are interested in your exploits, how available are you for jobs?”

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As Rose stood from her perch, I simply gazed blindly about the room, my ears attentive toward the sounds that surrounded us, the smells that lingered in the air, taking in what my lack of sight could not grasp. True, I was able to see in a sense of the word, like forebearing shadows coming before the moment was upon us. But not in a literal sense. I could make out figures, silhouettes, like one using a broken hologic to search out spirits among the white noise. And though I retained the ability, there still held a retransition stage of returning toward my natural means of seeing.

 

So, for the moment, like Rru, I would miss the tantalizing sight that I would likely regret later. But still, knowing that she would be by my side, as much of a rock to me as I would be to her, made my stand firm in the belief that the path that laid before me was of true honor and glory, worthy of my resurgence as Canderous Bralor and rebirthing the long dead Clan of my forefathers.

 

"Ready to slay even the deadliest of foes with the slightest look," I jested in return, the humble smile hidden beneath the ancient helm as we strolled forward into our destinies. "May our foes fall to your beauty as much as they fall to your blade."

 

And as we boarded our shuttle, my ship hovered silently outside, ready to follow us toward our next destination. Walking aboard this shuttle, we took our places and awaited our departure. I still had yet to learn of where we were going, but I trusted Rose, a bond beginning to form between the two of us. Whether it was Kad Ha'rangir or the Force that was responsible, only time would tell.

 

((To Qat))

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Formally Known as Hunter Of Shadows/Dark

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  • 2 weeks later...

The Besalisk grumbled a little when someone interrupted him in the middle of one of his stories. But Rufus’ face fell a few degrees when he noticed that the interruption was none other than a Black Sun viceroy and her escort.

 

He bowed meekly and scuttled as gracefully as he could into the Farstriders Rest main thoroughfare.

 

“The Black Sun is interested in MY exploits?” Malin chortled, eyeing the surveillance cameras located at every corner of the docking bay. “I’d be foolish not to admit I’m curious how they found my exploits when I’ve only had a few. But, we can get to that another time. Where are my manners?”

 

Malin removed his wide-brimmed hat, placed it to his chest and took a deep bow. “Honor ma’am. I don’t think I ever met a Black Sun top gun such as yerself. I must admit, I didn’t take ye for a mercenary, or a crook. And if you are, yer the nicest looking criminal I’ve ever seen. Name’s Malin, Malin Wrynn. And I’m always looking for work. Oh! And between you and me, I’m grateful you interrupted Rufus when you did, he likes to ramble a lot about his past with the Starlight Corsairs. He thinks it makes him sound tough.”

 

Malin fiddled with a cigar in his right hand. He settled his eyes on the viceroy and put his hat back on his ruffled black hair. “What particular job did ya have in mind?”

 

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  • 1 month later...

The Black Sun agent laughed heartily, the jowls along his neckline jittering up and down like the leather push to an organ. He strode forward and extended his hand to the young smuggler, his eyes not showing at all the mirth in his laugh.

 

“Well you smuggle right. See that's what the Black Sun is interested in, and I may have overblown your significance in the smuggling world and if so I apologize. But the Black Sun can give you the opportunity and monetary ability to make a name for yourself in the lucrative world of smuggling.”

 

THen it was Melania’s turn to take the smuggler’s hand and she also snatched the cigar from his hand and took a draw. Her smile on her face plastique and foreign as she talked to Malin.

 

“Well there are multiple jobs available, for instance we need some corrupted bacta smuggled into nar shaddaa, and also some liquid explosives smuggled onto Thyferra. You interested Malin?”

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The smuggler grumbled a little under his breath, grabbing a new cigar from his jacket pocket and lighting it up. He took each of their hands in turn and matched their grips. He looked both of them in the eye and kept eye contact with each of them for a good ten seconds. It was how he knew whether they were full of druk or not. Unfortunately, it looked like both of them was telling the force's honest truth. Which meant that Malin’s second delivery would be of questionable origin. He’d barely made it out of the Coruscant port before his smuggling enterprise took a criminal turn. He long suspected it was a matter of time. But he figured it would take months, not days.

 

Some part of him wanted to ask. A niggling worrisome part in the back of his mind desperately wanted to know why the Black Sun was shipping out bad bacta and liquid explosives. But the part of him that hadn’t had a decent meal in a little over a week was louder. It’s okay Malin. As long as you don’t have to use the gorram stuff, you should be good.

 

Malin took a long hard look at his ship. He swallowed away what little professional pride clung to the back of his mouth and sighed almost imperceptibly.

 

“Yea, I’m interested. But first I’d like to lay down a couple conditions,” Malin replied. “First, I want a guarantee from you both that the Black Sun will not harm my crew or my ship even if they are not directly affiliated with the Black Sun. And, second, if jobs run low in the Outer Rim and you run out of smuggling requests, I want the freedom to run jobs with anyone that can pay. That is unless they put out jobs that directly oppose quests and jobs made by you and yours."

 

Malin cracked his knuckles together and took a long hard drag from the cigar still in his mouth. Then a mischievous grin broke the stolid lines of his face. “If all that’s okay. I’d say we’re in business. Just point me to the first shipment and I’ll be on my way.”

 

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  • 2 months later...

Camik walked into the cantina. He kept the hood of his black cloak up and covering his armored body. He was unsure what he was walking into but this was Tatooine, and the one thing he could be sure of was he needed to be prepared for anything. This was not the civilized world of the core worlds but instead a havan for smugglers and criminals. The kind of place he used as a port of call before he traveled to Korriban.

 

The cantina he walked into was one he had visited regularly when he visited Tatooine, it was must have been the will of the Force that his Master would send him here. He looked around at the patroons. He did not recognize any of them at first glance. Not too surprising, this was not a place to socialize but a place to drink and conduct business.

 

He walked to the bar and ordered a drink. The bartender wordlessly poured his drink and passed it to him. As the glass reached his lips his cloak pulled back a bit revealing his face, enough that the bartender saw it and his eyes went wide.

 

”Camik? It’s been a while, long enough that I thought you were out of the game “

 

Camik took a full pull from the glass before answering.

 

”It’s me. I had to take a bit of time off from flying. But I am looking for someone named Canderous Bralor”

 

This was not the place to have lots small chat. He was there to get down to business. Now the question was how long and how hard would he have to hunt for the Mandalorian.

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The bartenders face went ghostly white as Camik poised his questions, his lower jaw beginning to shake in a slow drawn out stutter as he grasped for words to speak. Canderous Bralor, former Mandalore and Black Sun member. "H-h-how'd you hear that name? The barkeep finally managed to get out, his gaze shifting down in realization. That name hadn't been spoken here upon the Dunes in over a decade, the man now known solely as Atlas Dark, Bounty Hunter. Or was, as far as he knew.

 

But Canderous had shed that false identity here upon this very planet just a few weeks ago after setting out with the Mandalorian, Rose, and her compatriot, a member of the Sand People known solely as Rru. But that was weeks ago, and no one had seen him since. In fact, his old friend the barkeep, was beginning to worry a bit himself. But why had Camik came seeking him of all people, the Dar'Manda known as Canderous Bralor, last of Clan Bralor. This was indeed a strange turn of events.

 

"It doesnt matter. His corpse is likely buried beneath the Dunes far to the south near the old Armegedon Homestead. Some of the neighboring homesteaders came across the corpse of a Greater Krayt Dragon about a week back in that area." The barkeep spoke as he raised his eyes to meet the Cathar's, a hint of sadness within them as he poured his own glass and downed it quickly before slamming it down upon the bar upside down. "Werent no bodies found, but given the size of the dragon, it's unlikely even he survived. Looks like you came all this way for nothing."

 

Yet, why would Neo send Camik all this way for a man believed to be dead? Surely he wouldn't, as he would know. Perhaps Neo knew something that Anders did not. Camik would likely need to see this battleground himself, open himself up to the Force that flowed through the area, open his mind to the echoes that remained during its aftermath. Leaving Camik to himself and his thoughts, Anders walked away to fill another patron's mug.

 

Could Canderous have survived a tussle with a beast such as a Greater Krayt Dragon? Camik would need to find out for himself.

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R.I.P. Nanny (6/3/1941-1/9/2012)

R.I.P. Papa (2/14/1936-2/7/2012)

R.I.P. Big Mike (5/12/82-11/9/2012)

~Revelations 21:4 (KJV)~

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Listening to the bartender, both with his ears and his feelings, Camik heard how the very name he had uttered struck fear into those that heard it. At least those that were locals feared the name. Camik had learned not to let a simple thing like fear rule his life. He ruled fear.

 

He heard the story of the body of the Greater Krayt Dragon. If Canderous Bralor had managed to kill one, it showed a level of skill that warranted caution. But Master would not have sent him to meet this Canderous Bralor if he did not have a skill that warranted his Camik’s attention.

 

”Something like death is no excuse and is not reason for me not to find Canderous Bralor, give me coordinates to the where this Krayt Dragon was found.” He could have tried tracking from the bar but it was always easier to have a closer starting point.

 

The bartender gave it to him, a bit wary and a bit relieved when Camik walked out of the bar.

 

Eventually Camik came across the remains of the Krayt Dragon. It was still in the process of decomposing, becoming food for the carrions of the land. He wasn’t sure if Canderous was the one that fought the beast but his feelings told him that it was.

 

Reaching out with the Force he could feel presences of the beings around him. One stood out greater than the rest. This was the presence he seeked. Without a word he began moving towards his target. He was unsure how far away it was but he was given a task and something like distance would not stop him.

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Long had the bodies that took up arms against the Greater Krayt Dragon been gone, possibly turned to dust or entombed by the Dune Sea of Tatooine. Yet there was a beacon of hope for young Camik, buried not too far from where he searched. Beneath the constantly drifting sands was buried a probe droid, its powercell destroyed when a blaster grazed its form and it eventually leaked out and deactivated it into a seemingly endless sleep.

 

This droid would lead to a ship belonging to Atlas Dark, also known as Canderous Bralor, and through the ships computers, Canderous Bralor could be located. It would only take a little ingenuity and patience to travel this path that Neo had set Camik upon, Canderous only one more world away.

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R.I.P. Nanny (6/3/1941-1/9/2012)

R.I.P. Papa (2/14/1936-2/7/2012)

R.I.P. Big Mike (5/12/82-11/9/2012)

~Revelations 21:4 (KJV)~

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  • 2 months later...

((Legal Double Post))

An highly encrypted comm originating from Mechis III would reach its destination after finally bouncing from one end of the Galaxy to the other numerous times. It simple read:

 

"49 20 68 61 76 65 20 61 20 6e 65 77 20 61 73 73 69 67 6e 6d 65 6e 74 20 66 6f 72 20 79 6f 75 2e 20 49 6e 66 69 6c 74 72 61 74 65 20 61 6e 64 20 61 73 73 69 73 74 20 74 68 65 20 4d 61 6e 64 61 6c 6f 72 69 61 6e 73 2e 20 59 6f 75 20 77 69 6c 6c 20 66 69 6e 64 20 74 68 65 6d 20 6f 6e 20 43 6f 72 75 73 63 61 6e 74 2e 20 49 6e 66 6c 75 65 6e 63 65 20 74 68 65 6d 20 74 6f 20 68 65 6c 70 20 72 65 65 73 74 61 62 6c 69 73 68 20 74 68 65 20 48 75 74 74 20 66 61 63 74 69 6f 6e 20 61 73 20 61 6c 6c 69 65 73 2e 20 41 77 61 69 74 20 66 75 72 74 68 65 72 20 69 6e 73 74 72 75 63 74 69 6f 6e 73 2e 20 52 49 48 4e 20 61 75 74 68 6f 72 69 7a 61 74 69 6f 6e 20 63 6f 64 65 3a 20 52 49 48 4e 2d 34 32"

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R.I.P. Nanny (6/3/1941-1/9/2012)

R.I.P. Papa (2/14/1936-2/7/2012)

R.I.P. Big Mike (5/12/82-11/9/2012)

~Revelations 21:4 (KJV)~

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The message is received by a series of seemingly random droids that then proceed to redirect the message on an encrypted channel to an innocuous satellite that redirects the message back into space to its final destination...

 

Jidai Geki said:
Hmm... the possibilities for new atrocities just widened with the advent of a new RP baby...
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  • 11 months later...

The cool desert night winds howled across the barren wastes of the Dune Sea. Little moved at night on Tatooine and nothing was moving here, on this cloudless night. Nothing out of the ordinary; at least for now.
 

A shimmer of light flickered in the air, a wisp bouncing along invisible streams of air. It finally alighted atop the tallest dune in the area; flecks of sand slowly building it higher and higher. In an instant, where once was nothingness, a hissing sound erupted and as painted stroke by stroke a black clad figure formed out of the air. The wisp vanishing as the finishing touches of the being’s body formalized into physicality.  Standing there in robes, black as the heart of The Maw itself, stood a man. His garb was Tusken in design. Hanging at his side, a shimmering blackened gaderffi. This weapon was not a rough hewn weapon made of scavenged bits of crashed starship. It was a weapon expertly forged of mysterious metal; a weapon made for a crusader.

Through the shimmering blackened goggles, Rruror’rur’rr stared out at the cloudless starry sky. He did not know how long it had been or even what had transpired in the moments since his death. The voices of his ancestors, ever present comrades, were silent. Inhaling deeply, Rruror’rur’rr took in a breath of refreshing air; air that was his. Mingling with his confusion, love, and loss, the solitary Tusken felt a strange set of peace.

 

’You are mine. Your body belongs to me. Until your death, again.’
 

Rruror’rur’rr’s body tensed. The voice from his death. It was back. As much as he wanted to die; it seemed as though all of the fates had conspired against him. He had walked through hell, defied his customs, dishonored his traditions, and defiled his people. Still, he was cursed to not die, but to live.

 

Your ancestors led you to me. Your life was a smattering of eking by, desiring but never grasping. Together, we will go into the stars. We will go further than any of our kind have. Together we will bring revenge on they that subjugated our peoples and destroy our world.I shall give to you all that you desire and more; all you must do is my bidding.’ the voice pounded in the Tusken’s head. Each word a drumbeat against his temples. Reaching up with his black cloth wrapped hands, Rruror’rur’rr grasped his head and fell to his knees, crumpling in pain. ’Good,’ the voice reverberated. ’Kneel in submission. I will guide you.’

 

Then, as suddenly as the painful voice was there, it was gone. 

 

The silence flooded Rruror’rur’rr’s mind as he slumped face first into the sand, his body drifting down the dune. The winds gently fluttering the loose edges of his blackened Tusken robes, slowly depositing sand against his body.

 

Alive. Alive, but not free.

 

The remainder of the night passed without incident. The following morning Rruror’rur’rr awoke as the twin suns cast their warm gaze upon him. Blackened robes were of little use in casting off the heat. Yet, this was the first that the Tusken warrior noticed them; as the suns beat down and warmed his back.

 

Pushing himself up, the night’s accumulation of sand running down his back, Rruror’rur’rr stared down at his outstretched hands in disbelief. ’Had it all been a dream?’ Flexing his hands, Rruror’rur’rr already knew the answer to that. It could not have been. How else had he come to this place, clad as such? The only question was *what next?’ Sitting in the sands, the Tusken pondered that thought as he played the events leading up to his death and his rebirth over in his head. Images of his demonic mount, the Mandalorians, his ancestors, his decent into hell, and the otherworldly voices played through his mind. Two things stuck out to him. 

 

The first was Rose, the blue haired warrior was he had become enamored with shortly before his death. What had become of her? She had died; hadn’t she? If he asked himself, Rruror’rur’rr was not entirely sure of that. He had died too had he not? Yet here he was. Perhaps whatever desert spirit that has seen for to curse him back to this life had done the same for her…

 

Secondly, the voice. It had spoken of revenge, of attaining the unattainable, of teaching out to the stars. Normally, Rruror’rur’rr would have discounted such notions as blasphemous adulterations of age of traditions; but given all that had happened, he couldn’t. Looking down again at his black garbed hands and arms he knew something had changed.

Not knowing what else to do, and with the suns beating down on him in an ever growing onslaught of heat, the Tusken picked himself up and began to walk. The first thing to do was to figure out where he even was. The deserts of Tatooine were unforgiving at best. 

 

————————————-

 

Forwards. Onwards and upwards. They were the only directions the desert warrior could go. As he created his fourth dune something stood out from the endless waves of shifting sand: moisture vaporators; rows upon rows of them. Spattered amongst them a crew of six maybe seven hodge-podged metallic droids clinked and clanked as they tended to the accursed machines. 

 

Dropping into a crouch, Rruror’rur’rr after on instinct. Even if he could not hear the voices of his ancestors, he still felt their guiding hands ((the force)). Slinging forward, like a sand panther on the prowl, the Tusken made it to the first towering vaporator with ease. From there it was easy enough to bash in the hands of the first two droids with ease. A third noticed the decimation and quickly sounded the alarm, sending the remaining droids scurrying back towards the farm in the distance.

 

Meeting little resistance, with gaderffi in hand, Rruror’rur’rr set off at a loping gait after the droids. Cutting down the slowest as he gained on them before a blaster shot rang out and the Tusken dove for cover behind another vaporator.

The farmer apparently took offense to the black clad raider. Clutching his gaderffi, Rruror’rur’rr careful righted himself.

 

Within minutes, he could hear the grumbling of the portly farmer as he strode forward, having contented himself on clearly scaring the Tusken away.

*”…better not have broken my newly installed Turbo 3000 or else I’m gonna…”*

That was all that Rruror’rur’rr heard before he brought the clubbed end of his shimmering black signature weapon down on the man’s head just as he came into sight. A sickly splatter sent bits of blood and brain into the air as the man’s body fell limp and porcine in the sand.  

 

Lowering his club, Rruror’rur’rr pondered. The voice had spoken of more; but what? 

Setting off towards the house, the warrior wondered what might await him inside. Answers, he hoped.

 

Inside, Rruror’rur’rr found relatively simple living. Aside from the fact that the man clearly was a slob and lived alone, the thing that caught his attention the most was the nearly full wall sized display broadcasting one of the most loathsome, albeit intriguing, displays he had ever seen; two completely unclothed tendril headed aliens partaking in what he could only classify as blasphemous bodily acts with one another.

 

A lesser Tusken would have immediately bashed the offending display to pieces. Rruror’rur’rr however hesitated. He had discovered that, while seemingly an abomination, even the darkly clad ancestor in his death has wielded some matter of technology to his benefit and still been welcomed home.

 

Jabbing his fingers at the buttons whilst trying, and failing to not watch the vile display splayed across the wall, Rruror’rur’rr somehow managed, through force or luck, to activate some matter of menu. As the screen turned black a voice echoed from around the room: “Greetings. How may I assist you today?”

 

’it spoke?’ Rruror’rur’rr took a step back in surprise. It was like he was in the belly one of those fo droids.

 

Pondering for a moment, the Tusken finally spoke, his voice a low mumbling growl. ”Where is Rose?”

 

Pardon me my liege, but there is no one by that name in the directory. Perhaps if you could provide me with some details I can scan publicly available census data and locate who it is you are looking for.”

 

Rruror’rur’rr stared dumbly at the blank screen. “Rose is . . . ahhhh . . . A warrior. She  . . . Blue hair. Offworlder. She died.”

 

That information is decidedly unhelpful.” the smooth metallic voice retorted. “Do you know how many warrior switch blue hair exist on Tatooine alone?” for a moment the computer whirred quietly with the Tusken staring stupidly at it pondering what to do next.

 

A few minutes of silent whirring later the computer spoke again, ”This warrior woman you refer to, she would not be an affiliate of the Black Sun crime syndicate that settled planetside some time ago would she?” Without pausing to await a response, an image of Rose Cariadus flashed up in the wall sized screen surrounded by flashing symbols of encryption that obscured most of the information associated with the file. ”Because if so I believe this might be who you are looking for. Not much besides a name and a comm code though, I regret to say. I cannot even tell you if the code is still good. The files on Tatooine have not been kept up to date for quite a while.”

 

Rruror’rur’rr grunted excitedly as a familiar image flashed on the screen. It was her! ”Is she, alive?” he asked hesitantly, not entirely sure he wanted the answer. What if it was no? What is she was gone, as well, forever?

 

Before he could retract his question the computer responded. ”It appears she was reanimated and left the planet. Beyond that, your guess is as good as mine. If you want, I could try the transmission code; although I assume it will only result in another Imperial cease and desist order. She does seem your type though.”

 

”Do it!” the Tusken snarled excitedly as he threw his hands up in the air.

 

Quickly and quietly a transmission was sent out into the cosmos. The encryption on it was more than simple; but it kept honest broadcasters honest and without having any idea where to start, the broadcast across all usual channels was a long shot at best. Still, it had worked in the past judging by the stack of no contact orders in the bedroom.

 

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  • 2 weeks later...

An alert had long informed the Black Sun of information having been gone through concerning a former asset and an investigation team had been sent. When they arrived at the origins of the search, they were met with a massacre. Tu'can'ra, or Tusker, was the lead agent, the Tusken draped in a black and white variant of her Tribe's garb and carrying a stun baton rather than the ancient weapon of her ancestors. And hanging from her back was a modernized slug rifle. Even before she dismounted the speeder, she could tell that it mimicked the actions of her people, but something was quite different this particular attack as she scanned the movements and directions from which it originated. It was too quick, too focused.

 

Reaching down her hip as the others dismounted, Tusker swung open the stun baton, its clanking surely signaling the one inside as the electrical currents sparked and hummed with activation. Slowly moving toward the farmhouse' entrance, her gloved hand opened the door.

 

((@Wyvernfall))

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Standing there in silence for several minutes, Rruror’rur’rr watched the blank screen. He was not sure what he was expecting. Truthfully he did not even understand what had happened in its entirety. ‘Filthy technology!’

 

Tapping a gloved hand on the screen seemed to result in nothing. What had he expected, Rose to just materialize in the room? Technology did seem capable of magical things. Blaspheming as he was already, Rruror’rur’rr wondered what the point was anymore.

 

After several minutes of no response, the Tusken set his eyes on the rest of the room. It was filthy, something that would, and probably did, end up getting one killed in the harsh deserts of Tatooine. Shaking his head, Rruror’rur’rr made his way to what he could only assume was the kitchen; judging by the fly infested dishes in the sink. Opening cupboards he began to look for something to eat. Up until this point, he had not realized just how hungry he was. Coming back to life reanimated by a mysterious dark being really took it out of you. Finding several seemingly edible cakes of unknown origin, one appeared to be some sort of meat, and a unopened container of Jawa Juice in the cooler, Rruror’rur’rr made his way back to the large screen. Shoving aside a stack of documents and data pads with a flatter, the Tusken cleared a spot to sit. Not sure what else to do, he contended himself to sit and eat and wait. He wouldn’t want to miss Rose when she called back.

 

Finishing his meal, Rruror’rur’rr contended himself with the remoteness of his location and the fact that no one had yet come to check on the porcine offworlder. Soon enough he found himself fidgeting with whatever doodads and gizmos were within reach. He really had not ever bothered with the enemy’s trinkets; but if they could allow him to find Rose, maybe he could find a use for other bits and baubles in the house.

 

One thing led to another and Rruror’rur’rr lost track of time as the suns outside raced higher and higher in the sky. He was content to dig through the deceased’s belongings with impunity.

 

That was until a sound outside caught his attention. Jerking his head up with a growl of concern, he grabbed for the smooth black gaderrfi at his side. He knew that sound: electricity. It was the sound of an offworlder preparing to attack. He knew that from past experiences.

 

What he saw; however, gave the Tusken pause. There, a shadowy figure envelopes by the bright sunlight outside, stood another Tusken, with an . . . offworld  weapon? What was this trickery?

 

This was not what he expected. It was probably the furthest thing from. Even as he was shrouded in blackened robes of his people, this being was enveloped in fear of white and black; yet clothed as one of his own kind. Still, whoever this was, was not one of his tribe. They were dead. His heart pained at the thought and the dark voices in his head whispered wordless feelings of anger and revenge, urging Rruror’rur’rr to take it out on this trespasser. Gripping his gaderrfi tightly, Rruror’rur’rr raised it defensively, ready to strike. ‘What if this is Rose? Has she come for me?’

 

Tensing his body Rruror’rur’rr growled in his native Tusken, “Are you too a demon come to haunt my cursed steps? A wraith of the sands conjured to guide me? My Rose returned from beyond? Or have you come to claim my conquest as your own?” With that, he jabbed the sharp spear line end of his mysterious gaderffi towards the newcomer, tense and prepared to fight even as his mind pondered what could be happening. He did not know and that scared him.

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Tu'can'ra was found as a child by a mining family that happened upon her tribe's encampment, the sole survivor of a cleansing brought about by her own after their Storyteller passed with no heir apparent. Such was tradition among her people. Yet, she was spared because her mother could not do it, her father already lost to the sands a few years before.

 

The family that had found her raised her as one of their own, but the few years that she had lived among her tribe remained embedded within her, and she spent most of her time out amongst the dunes that was once her home, her face covered not only to hide her origins, but to protect her from the harsh sands of Tatooine. Because of this, she had always been able to walk amongst both worlds that had made her.

 

But as she gazed upon the Tusken below her, she felt a kindred spirit looking up at her. The sorrow in his movements, what words she could make out from memory speaking of dead wraiths and a loved one, and his being alone spoke volumes of her own experiences. As his attack came, she twirled around him and struck the Tusken across the shoulders just hard enough to wind him as the shock tore through his respiratory system briefly. 

 

Backing away, Tu'can'ra spoke what little of their language remained in her memory, only capable of expressing her will not to fight but to understand, and letting him know that if he pursued the path of the warrior, she would not hesitate to end his life here and now as her comrades leveled their laser sights upon his form. All she had to do was give the order. In silence, she awaited his reply.

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Rruror’rur’rr gasped as his back arched away from the charged blow across his shoulders. The electricity arced through the thick cloth to prickle his skin as he growled angrily, hefting his weapon for another blow. The only thing that gave the warrior pause was the sight of this person’s decidedly non-Tusken, techno-wielding goons leveling their weapons at him. Even as the would-be Tusken stepped back, speaking in a stunted Tusken dialect, Rruror’rur’rr knew he had little hope of coming out the victor in an all out confrontation. 
 

So menacingly staring at the group, he held his position, righting himself. He showed he was prepared to defend himself, even as he made no move to advance again. At least for the moment.

 

Growling a wordless Tusken battle cry, Rruror’rur’rr followed it with, “You came for me,” in his native tongue. He hoped it’s as simple enough in his meaning the words carrying an entirety of accusations and suggestions in their gravelly undertones.

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Tu'can'ra smiled beneath her garbed rags as the Blackened Raider stood down, the Tusken herself hitting the retract button that caused the baton to sheath its self before she placed it upon her hip and pulled forth a datapad, her men still aimed at his midsection should he make the dire mistake of attacking their commmander.

 

Holding up the datapad with the blue haired Mandalorian, Rose, strewn across its screen, Tusker spoke this time in basic. "You searched for her in our archives. Why?" She poised, searching to see if he could understand the language of the basics before she continued. "She is a former asset of my Employers, no longer amongst us. What are your ties to her?" Tu'can'ra placed the datapad in his hands, allowing him to see her picture, watching him react to both her and the technology. She was curious, wondering why he differed from the rest.

 

With that, she stepped back and watched, waiting to see how he truly responded. He was searching for her, defying his beliefs to do so, even if he, like herself, was the last of his tribe. The only thing that separated them being she was raised around technology where he wasn't. And yet he sought it out. This intrigued her more than words could even begin to express.

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What happened next was not what Rruror’rur’rr had expected. His would-be foe had deactivated her weapon and stepped back. That in and of itself was of little reassurance as the accompanying entourage of goons were still present and seemingly ready to riddle him with blaster fire at a moment’s notice. No, it was when he caught a glimpse of Rose on the data pad that Rruror’rur’rr’s heart jumped. ‘The screen must have accessed these so called archives.’  He realized. There was no other conceivable idea his brain could come up with that would have drawn them here with that information. The only question was now; we’re these friends of his Rose, or foes?

 

Eyeballing the gion squad behind the strangely clad Tusken, Rruror’rur’rr decided that discretion was probably a better choice in the moment. “She saved my life,” the Tusken growled in a gravelly basic as waves of images and memories too fresh rushed back through his mind. It was true, in a matter of speaking. Even though he had died; she had given him something to live for. 
 

Gaderffi still held defensively, the darkly clad Tusken refused the offer of the pad. It was enough that he could see the image displayed in it. He did not need anything occupying his hand should this be a sort of ruse. “Where is she?” He asked, each word carefully rolled over his tongue as he checked each for accuracy. Maybe they had her. Maybe they knew where she was. Maybe they had killed her. “You can, take me to her,”  his words were more a statement than question, even as he tore his eyes from the screen to look back at his fellow Tusken.

 

It was only then that it occurred to him to even ask, his voice a low grumble as he returned to his native tongue. “Who are you?”

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Tusker grew even more intrigued as he spoke of her saving his life, the Mandalorians a complex religious cult that even she had trouble understanding, the blood of warrior ancestors running through her Tusken veins. As he disregarded the offer of the datapad, she sat it aside and listened as he spoke, taking note of the way he phrased himself, the way he still clung to his ways despite wanting heartedly to find her. In a way, Tu'can'ra found it slightly sweet. 

 

"I cannot..." She responded in basic, leaning up against a nearby corner, her gazed fixed upon the Tusken before her. In truth, she was slightly excited to have met and conversed with one of her own like she had always dreamed of. But there was something in him that differed even for her, and she could not completely place it. Calmly she spoke, choosing words she felt he would understand. "She disappeared into the skies with her own kin.... no word of her since she answered her people's call.... no longer part of us."

 

She made sure her words rolled off her tongue truthfully, not wanting her men above, whom stood astonished at two Tuskens conversing in basic before them and surreal reality it was offering them, to mistake any actions as hostility toward her should he grow frustrated. But to be on the safe side, she held up her open hand and closed her fist that signalled them to relax and let the situation ease, their guns lowering but not off target.

 

"I am Tu'can'ra." She spoke as she turned her attention back to him. "Last of my tribe..... and you?"

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‘Into the skies’

 

That phrase itself cemented in Rruror’rur’rr’s mind what he already had been coming to accept. Whatever the reason, whatever the cost, he would find his Rose. Even if his ancestors feared what fell from the skies, he would not allow these beliefs to hold him back any more. He had travelled into Hell and returned, fought the demons that sought to subject his world, traversed time in some dark-side warped battle, found love, died.

 

Seeing the accompanying soldiers relax somewhat, Rruror’rur’rr took that as a signal that maybe he was not going to die, yet. 
 

“My name is Rruror’rur’rr. I too am the last of my tribe, forsaken by the spirits, ascended into hell, and he who was sacrificed by demons to be reborn anew.” It was a mouthful, but there was no other way Rruror’rur’rr felt he could explain what had happened to him without spending hours regaling the strange Tusken before him. Most assuredly they both had stories to tell. Neither had a story teller or tribe with which to share these tales though. Rruror’rur’rr felt a strange kinship towards the equally strangely garbed Tusken before him. 
 

Leaning close, Rruror’rur’rr whispered, knowing that what he was about to ask could get him killed for blasphemy. He hoped that her altered garb and use of offworlder technology spoke true though. “Can you help me find her? Can you help me,” he paused swallowing; his mouth suddenly dry and rough. Unable to finish, he cautiously pointed upwards towards the ceiling. He wanted to leave the planet, willingly. He knew if he was going to die, this might very well be the moment. 

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*Feldstar Gik is currently deceased. Please direct all messages to my alternate account: Frond

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As he spoke, Tu'can'ra began to understand him more, understand his reasons and reactions, and listened to his tale. It was common knowledge and something that all Tusken knew, that stories could be told without a single word, movements of the body and expressions telling more than words ever could. And for Tusker, this had been a solemn truth for her as she grew. So as he spoke, she watched him and learned him, even as he leaned over and pleaded with her.

 

"Leave us." Tusker commanded, her men looking at her inquisitively as her gaze met theirs from beneath her robes. A moment of silence passed and they departed, leaving only she and him alone. Her gaze shifted back to him as her hands motioned toward the garb that draped over her hand, Tu'can'ra unraveling the veil that hid her true Tusken face for so many years now. As she allowed him to gaze upon her face, she smiled and spoke, a harsh truth coming from her lips. "We are only bound to this planet by fear and old wounds. But I sense you know this as much as I do."

 

Her eyes stared into his beneath his own faceless mask, almost as if piercing the veil he hid behind. He may not look like she, his own heritage different from her own. But his heart was Tusken and that was all that mattered to her. "I have walked among worlds that looked like the world of the Ancients, seen the lush flora, smelt the salty vast oceans, and have seen what the stars above look like as close as you and I are. You do not need me. But I would aid you if you truly wish."

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Rruror’rur’rr watched curiously as the Tusken woman sent her non-Tusken comrades away. He smiled as she spoke. “I have been to a world of the demons that suppressed our lands. There I killed and I lived.”
 

Rruror’rur’rr’s chest tensed as the woman began to unwrap her head covering. This was something that was forbidden in all but the most intimate of settings amongst their people. Still, they were just discussing heresy and both self-identified as outcasts. Even amongst the clans their were differences. In Rruror’rur’rr’s clan the women and men dressed identically. Their sex unknown to all but their closest kin. The same could be said of their species. For while Tusken appeared uniformly barbaric to any outsiders, inside their own world they took in helpless orphans and adhered to a rich tradition. A tradition Rruror’rur’rr had been discovering was quite similar to that of the Mandalorians. 
 

So he sat, still as a stone, every inclination in his body tell him to divert his eyes. Still, he forced himself to watch. The face that he saw was one that differed from his own; but that did not surprise him. 
 

“I need an iron demon to whisk me into the skies. To find my Rose.” He spoke matter of factly before pausing, a glint in his eye, unseeable beyond his reflective goggles. “Unless of course, you and your newfound clansmen were looking for another to join you on one last hunt before I take our cause, my crusade, to the stars?” After all he had been through, the idea of raiding with one of his own held a certain familiar appeal. They were both outcasts in some way. He didn’t even need to ask her story. The fact was as delegate as they were, their fates were bound along a similar path. He needed help getting off of his home world and looming for Rose. The desert culture had taught him that such a thing did not come without a price.

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https://wyvernfall.sarahah.com/

*Feldstar Gik is currently deceased. Please direct all messages to my alternate account: Frond

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She chuckled coyfully as he spoke, finding humor in his ways of speech and the riddled ways of her own past life and knowing what truly existed beyond the veil that their people blindly hid behind. Her green eyes gazed at him, the few features that differed between them being what separated them in looks. "The oppressors of our ancestors have long died out, our fear being the only thing that truly holds us back now."

 

She moved away, finding a box to sit down upon as she tried to find the words to speak to him that would help him understand what she meant, what he truly could not imagine and yet was the true reality that she had saw with her own eyes as a member of Black Sun. "Perhaps they feared others like them, maybe that is why we live so primitive. I cannot say with truth. But I have seen worlds that our ancestors would cherish. I have walked on worlds that we would fear without reason, where our ancestors would have thrived and not hide away."

 

"There is so much you do not know, so much that you cannot even imagine, above, Rruror’rur’rr. And I would gladly take you on my ship." Tu'can'ra spoke with sentiment, her happiness in meeting another like her being the only payment she would require. But she was curious of what laid beneath his own garbed mask. "All you have to do is show me the real you, beneath your mask. If you truly wish to embrace the skies, then forsake your past and become one with me and my clan. Though we do not show ourselves to them, we must know each other in the sense of our tribes, the past that separates us from them."

 

Her facial expressions grew serious for a moment, a request not taken lightly, a call for respect to their true ancestors. "Can you do this?"

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Rruror’rur’rr found himself carefully nodding as he listened to Tusker’s speech. He might not have agreed with her every sentiment, but he at least felt that he kind of understood where she was coming from. Maybe she was right. Maybe their own past was holding them back.

 

Then again, their past is what made them who they were. It was one thing to seek to expand one’s horizons. It was an entirely different thing to openly reject that which made one him or herself. The fierce suns and sands had taught him that.  Even Rose’s people held to their own traditions, didn’t they?
 

Cautiously he responded, “You may be right. Our ways have kept our people alive for generations though. What use have our people had for the sky when we have survived here, where those who make false claims to the land struggle to even walk the dunes.”

 

Running his hand along the wrappings that’s shrouded his face he paused before continuing. “Do you remember when you were but a child, before you undertook the rights of becoming an equal amongst your people? We can not forsake those lessons either. The sands can kill as easily the brothers giving chase across the sky. Our coverings protect us. They offer life. They brand us as to who we are.” Rruror’rur’rr’s memory flashed as he thought about the ancient spirit who had been taken away from his ancestors. He had forsaken all of the trappings of his people and returned a monster. His father had pled with him to return to the fold, but it had been too late. He had forsaken that which he was and into that void had filled the monsters who had destroyed their world. 
 

Lowering his hand and looking at the black shrouds that now covered it, he was reminded that some spirit from that encounter had deemed that it was not yet his time to pass into the great beyond. Rruror’rur’rr shook his head dejectedly. “I do not wish to forsake my past, for in doing so, I may lose who I am and become one with the devils who destroyed our world. I simply wish to  evolve our people. To learn the ways of the enemy and to smite them before they can take away anything else from us. The spirits of our ancestors saved from from certain death. I can not forsake that. I am sorry.” Slowly he lowered his head, convinced that he had just destroyed any chance he had to find his Rose. The price was simply too high.

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https://wyvernfall.sarahah.com/

*Feldstar Gik is currently deceased. Please direct all messages to my alternate account: Frond

http://jedirp.net/forums/viewtopic.php?f=64&t=49276

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