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Churning into the fringes of Corellian territory, a large Imperial Starcruiser and her escorts made a frightening headway towards the planet and surround claimed space. The comms crackled to life as they drew nearer, 

 

“Let us make it the most rushed upon doomed ending the would be power mongering sith of deepest darkness have ever seen!” The comms aboard the large capital ship responded to the Imperial call for battle across the rebel comms.  “The Squibian Allied Forces of the Jedi and Empire are here to fulfill their contract and ensure the total annihilation of bad big guy nasty nasty stinky Sith lords of darkest dark and their vile forces of destruction and despair. The Imperial Momship Formerly Known As Admiral Sairdonga and her minion swarms of Death Harvest Catchers and Sith Eaters have arrived to fall upon the foes of freedom with infathomless terror and chattering of razored teeth.”


Swarming about the Imperial warship two dozen Squib-made corvettes darted back and forth scanning the ship for structural weaknesses before the upcoming battle.

 

_________________________________
 

Independent Jedi/Imperial Support Force: Sairdonga

Destroyer Group (Turbolasers)

Task Force Experience: Green (1xp)

 

MCS MC75-Class Star Cruiser: Imperial Momship Formally Known As Admiral Sairdonga |20/20|

 

Independent Jedi/Imperial Support Force: Death Harvest Catchers

Hellriders: Hit and Run Tactics

 

Squib Needle Ship: Catcher 1 |2/1|

Squib Needle Ship: Catcher 1-2 |2/1|

Squib Needle Ship: Catcher 1-2-3 |2/1|

Squib Needle Ship: Catcher 1-2-3-4 |2/1|

Squib Needle Ship: Catcher 1-3-3-4-5 |2/1|

Squib Needle Ship: Catcher 1-2-3-4-5-6 |2/1|

Squib Needle Ship: Catcher 1-2-3-4-5-6-7 |2/1|

Squib Needle Ship: Catcher 1-2-3-4-5-6-7-8 |2/1|

Squib Needle Ship: Catcher 1-2-3-4-5-6-7-8-9 |2/1|

Squib Needle Ship: Catcher 1-2-3-4-5-6-7-8-9-10 |2/1|

Squib Needle Ship: Catcher 1-2-3-4-5-6-7-8-9-10-11 |2/1|

Squib Needle Ship: Catcher 1-2-3-4-5-6-7-8-9-10-11-12 |2/1|
 

Independent Jedi/Imperial Support Force: Sith Eaters

Hellriders: Hit and Run Tactics

 

Squib Needle Ship: Sith 0-1 |2/1|

Squib Needle Ship: Sith 1-2 |2/1|

Squib Needle Ship: Sith 2-3 |2/1|

Squib Needle Ship: Sith 3-4 |2/1|

Squib Needle Ship: Sith 4-5 |2/1|

Squib Needle Ship: Sith 5-6 |2/1|

Squib Needle Ship: Sith 6-7 |2/1|

Squib Needle Ship: Sith 7-8 |2/1|

Squib Needle Ship: Sith 8-9 |2/1|

Squib Needle Ship: Sith 9-10 |2/1|

Squib Needle Ship: Sith 10-11 |2/1|

Squib Needle Ship: Sith 11-12 |2/1|

 

 

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As Draygo had said, there was no time to lose. There was only time to run through additional lightsaber drills with Genesis, and try to steal a few hours of sleep despite the imminent threat of battle. An alarm klaxon jolted the veteran Jedi from her sleep. She pushed herself off of the command consoles and rubbed at the indentations that the freighter’s controls had left on her cheek. Only a few seconds later, the haze of hyperspace receded to reveal a star system in chaos--Sith and Rebel fleets were arrayed in the vicinity of Corellia, and McShipface’s advanced sensors were picking up energy surges that were indicative of ongoing dogfights between the fleets’ pickets.

 

And there was something big out there. Draygo’s senses couldn’t quite pick out the presence, but the Force and her ship’s sensors were warning her that horrible danger was lurking many kilometers out into the void.

 

She keyed the ship’s comm systems and hailed the Rebel fleet, her fingers skidding on an unidentified moisture on the controls.. “This is Master Darkfire. Standing by to support. Awaiting tactical data.” She terminated the signal and grimaced; she had been drooling in her sleep.

 

“Ryu!” The veteran Jedi called into the rear of the ship. “I’m sorry. I said that I would petition the Grandmaster regarding your case, try to get the Jedi off your back while you picked through your memories. I…” Draygo ran her hands through her hair, feeling as though the vacuum was trying to reach through the hull to grab her. “I can record a message for you, just in case I don’t… but if I do, I’ll come get you. Bag--has a comlink, a few days of rations, and some credits if you make it to a city. Now, please, take the easy way out of this one and ride an escape pod down to Corellia.”

 

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Rolling through a few more repetitions of Makashi with Master Armiena helped to take my mind off of Coruscant and the horrors I saw that day, although occasionally I did eye Ryu from time to time during and wonder about his past. Armiena was definitely threatened by him in a sense, his past known, or at least his reputation, only to her. And yet despite this threatened feeling she got from him, she still chose to help him.

 

As she departed, I stayed with the man, offering what little I could to make his journey a pleasant one considering his confinement, and sitting in silence the rest as I remembered first encountering him and the scars that riddled his body. He knew war, that was for sure. Likely as experienced as Master Armiena, if not more. And here I was, rushing off to one inexperienced in every way save for the Force and what Master Armiena had taught me. This was something I never thought I would ever see myself doing, especially after i made a vow to never pick up a blade ever again.

 

But now i was a Jedi, and one of the callings had placed an even more dangerous blade into my hand than the one I used so long ago, and my mentality had began to shift toward the need to use it in the defense of those who can't. It was a bittersweet feeling to say the least, one i knew was important, but rathered not to ever have to. But war was war and it was inevitable. Still, the choice plagued me, especially when the klaxons began to blare and our arrival was upon us, the nervous pit in my stomach only growing deeper.

 

I heard Armiena call for Ryu, her intent to keep her word being set on hold for the moment. But as she spoke, an idea popped into my head that I could not leave unspoken. So as she finished her words, I spoke up. "Master, Ryu..." The echo my nervousness crackled my voice at first, but it firmed up as I continued. "Why not have him fight along side us? Memories or not, he knows war. We saw the scars. And it could benefit us to have another, just as it could benefit him to aid us. Actions speak louder than words, and with your recommendation and his aid, it may persuade the GrandMaster."

 

After I spoke it, the idea sounded silly to even me. But if my Master was intent on helping this man, this felt the best course. Help himself by helping us, the very Order who imprisoned him. Surely it would hold weight. But then again, only Ryu could make this choice for himself.

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Endan Gon'draur had spent at least 97% of his life in the cold vacuum of space or hyperspace and didn't regret his choices one tiny bit. Born under the streaking, swirling miasma of hyperspace on a mega-freighter, he had been the bastard son of the first mate of that massive ship. Though initially not wanted, his mother, despite being little more than a slave herself, had done everything she could to make him strong and help him survive. He had done so, and over the years and numerous ships, he had clawed his way up from a mere unglorified janitor to a deckhand to a loadmaster to an officer, and finally to the captain of his own ship. For sixty-eight years, he had glided between the stars as part of the infinitely large web network of ships that kept Galactic trade alive. He hated being on firm ground and preferred to be on a ship in orbit or on another run. Time was money, and every moment that a freighter was not in hyperspace with a full hold was a minute wasted.

 

For almost all of his life, he had been non-political. He didn't remember the old Republic or the Clone Wars, but he did remember the first Galactic Empire and every other government that had come and gone since then. He remembered all the wars, all the carnage, and the foolish waste of resources. In a way, he was glad for it because wars meant that people needed supplies and the extra hazards meant he could charge more to move the same goods. He had not been part of any of it and always flown under the radar, even when governments rose in glory or fell in bitter ashes. Nobody paid him or his ship, the hundred meter long Brayl-class freighter Septim's Pale carrying whatever bulk cargo various planets needed along the Corellian Trade Spine.

 

That had changed a month ago when he was approached on Bestine IV by a trio of beings initially posing as buyers. It had taken him all of two seconds to realize this was going to be trouble and, sure enough, as soon as the conversation got past initial pleasantries, the velvet claws came out. These were representatives of the Sith Empire and, though they appeared to be pleasant on the surface, Gon'draur could read between the lines at the hidden threats of non-compliance. They needed someone who had been coming and going through Corellia for decades with no known political connections and no criminal record. In short, they needed someone who wouldn't be noticed or whose presence wouldn't raise alarms.

The job they were conscripting him for was, at least on the datapad, simple. All he needed to do was allow the Sith agents to rig the Septim's Pale to look like it was carrying its normal cargo all the while it was holding an entire battalion of Sith troops. He would go along his normal route, enter the Corellian system, pass through customs, and land in Coronet City in the massive docks. From there, the troops would begin doing what they did best and he was free to escape in the ensuing chaos.

 

Only, he knew that wasn't as easy as it sounded and that he was putting himself and his eight man crew at a great risk. Even then, though the pay was extremely good—over two years of his normal income—it would be dangerous. He had little choice, truly, for he was smart enough to know that if he denied the Sith their due, he would quickly disappear. He may make it off Bestine, but even if he did, he was certain some mysterious problem would occur on his ship and he would become one of the hundreds or thousands of ships that simply disappeared every year on the long, lonely treks between stars. 

 

That is how, even though he didn't want to do it, Captain Endan Gon'draur found himself reverting from hyperspace to the familiar sight of Corellia, its shipyards, and its constant buzz of traffic with a hull full of Sith troopers primed and ready to fight. He only hoped to live through this day and then, maybe he would sell the Septim's Pale, buy a smaller ship, and retire to travel for pleasure.

Qaela Sig

Send PM's to Travis.

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Kakuto Ryu had disappeared to the back of Shippy McShipface, which he had immediately decided was the most aptly named Starship in all of the galaxy. After a few hours scrapping off a decade of accumulated filth with a sonic shower and combing the knots out of his hair and beard, he donned a fresh grey jedi robe and began the arduous task of navigating back to the front of the ship without knocking any pieces of it loose. It was then that he heard Armiena's echo down the hall, calling his name. He could detect the concern in her voice, and as the primary view port came into view he could tell why. His eyes fixed on the console, and as Armiena and Genesis spoke he found himself unable to focus on the sound of their voices.

He studied the patterns of the ships moving, assessing the situation. He barely overhead the conversation, feeling an odd sense of unease. Seeing this battle on a screen failed to tell him what his gut was telling him he needed to know, but he couldn't put into words. His inability to feel the battle around him was making him feel blind, nervous. He really couldn't tell what was happening, beyond that there were lots ships swarming around, posturing for the beginning of a battle. He looked over at Genesis, noting an expectant silence in the conversation.

"Genesis is right. I said it already, but running doesn't sit well with me. I'm not hiding in an escape pod or an air raid shelter while this mess blows over. We need each other." Ryu twisted his mouth into a grimace. He did not believe they needed him as much as he needed them, and he found that notion somehow humiliating for reasons he couldn't entirely spell out.

"If the Jedi are planning to hunt me down a note from a dead Jedi probably won't be very persuasive. Your survival is my salvation, and so we will fight in tandem."

Ryu leaned toward the view port and began watching the ships again, stroking his beard.

"Just tell me what your mission is. And if you have one to spare, I could use a lightsaber."

Edited by Kakuto Ryu

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The Assassin stared into the swirling madness of Hyperspace, dressed in nothing but a chest binding and briefs, cradling her buy’ce in an unarmored arm. She could feel the coolness of its metalwork, the Sith Steel forged by Ason to match her soul. Trembling hands held it to her own head, and she watched the reflection of her crimson eyes in the T-visor’s glow. 

 

You are Dar’Manda. 

 

She wanted to throw the helmet into the depths of the Maw, to seal away her past as if it never occurred. But there was more to her than just armor. She could see the hauntings of her actions in the reflection of her eyes. Her soul was empty. She was drained of life. 

 

You are Dar… No. There was a hunger for more. 

 

Terra turned her eyes into the brightness of Hyperspace’s void, a gnawing hunger sweeping through her. The reflection showed more, it showed ranks of armored Mandalorians before a throne of pure white. Deathwatch and Protector alike. On it sat an Echani woman, the circlet of Mandalore upon her brow, fine blonde hair in a plait on her shoulder. Those shoulders weren’t bowed in grief or dishonor, but straight, as her whole form was. Redeemed. She felt sickness wash over her and the vision disappeared as she collapsed to her knees. There she remained for a moment. 

 

A Mandalorian arose then, her shoulders less bowed, her head held higher. There was a new feeling that was washing through her veins. It felt toxic to her soul, and yet more alive. 

 

Hope. 

 

Turning, she walked into the ready-room, her crimson eyes alight with passion. All chatter ceased, eyes falling onto her with curiosity. All there were of her former Deathwatch, but the shuttle’s pilot, a tall man with skeptical brow and a cup of stimcaf in hand. Her soldiers were all stripped to their undergarments, their beskar’gam laid before them. Terra stooped to her armor, placing the buy’ce at the center of the room. From her ready-bag she withdrew a several large vials. 

 

Taking an offered dish of bronzium from Longkra she poured in the vial’s contents. Black sand of the Kelita, the shattered obsidian and basalt of Manda’yaim’s volcanic past. Forest loam from Keldabe’s woodland. Ash from the beskar forges. Whispers of excited agreement began to swirl through the cabin. Taking a knife from the extended palm of Harjav, she cut into the meat of her palm, a place that had no risk of tendinous injury. 

 

The pilot, a man named Carhaid Lekht, seemed both mystified and disgusted as the Deathwatch began to chant. To the base melody of their chant, Terra began to sing the songs of Kad Ha'Rangir's rebirth, letting the blood drip into the bowl, to mix with the sand and dirt. 

 

“Devastation, regeneration, transformation, that is the best I can do for you...” 

 

She began to mix the components into a dark slurry with the butt of the knife. 

 

“I see a grey gloom on the horizon that promises a powerful star to rise…” 

 

Tears began to fall, running from crimson eyes, to drop into the slurry, the final component of the ancient magic of her people. It was a spell from the days before the last Mythosours were hunted.  

 

“It will make the fires of our purification look like dying embers…”

 

Taking two fingers, she scraped a small amount of the black substance up, and painted her chest and face with the symbols both the symbols of death and those of rebirth. Walking to each of her soldiers, she painted them the same and kissed each twice upon the forehead. The pilot was last, and shied away as she approached, unnerved by her lithe form and the uncivilized nature of the ceremony. 

 

“Become. Embody. Embrace.” 

 

She painted his face and kissed him, his disgust melting with her touch. In a moment he had joined her men, stripped to the waist as they sat before their beskar’gam, swaying to the chant. Stepping into the center of her warriors, she lifted up her helm, the circlet of Mandalore glowing like an ember. 

 

“We were Kyr’tsad, we were Dar’Manda...” 

 

Her words held the last in bitterness, the vile curse of being disowned by their culture hanging above all of them. 

 

“...But upon this battlefield we are reborn as Mando’ade!” 

 

The chant burst into cries of exhilaration, a great whooping, broken by the shrieks of those ready to die and those with no more tears for their own souls. A hyperspace alarm began to blare, and the Mandalorians began to dress. 

 

****** 

 

Master… If the… Sith attack… In force... 

 

She knew what he would say. He had done the calculations and so had she. 

 

Coronet City… Will Fall… 

 

Corsec soldiers would never be able to hold against a full Sith invasion. Terra scanned the Coronet city maps, identifying potential fortifiable positions as well as potential areas that were best suited for invasion forces. 

 

The Blastfield Shipyards and Spaceport

 

Her eyes darted to the enlarged leisure parks that dotted the city like cancerous warts. Too many to hold. Her armored fingers gripped the datatable in frustration, The Shipyards would have some militia forces active. She accessed her own datapad, pulling up numerical data. Rebel forces would have units on shore leave, and the Corellian army would have a presence as well. 

 

The spaceport would be where they would make their stand as The Forelorn Hope

 

Slipping the buy’ce onto her head, she uploaded the map data into real-time streaming on her HUD. The fractal movement of the 360-degree viewscreen made her momentarily disoriented, but after a few seconds her brain remembered the years of training. 

 

“Mic-Check” 

 

A chorus of affirmatives echoed in her ears. Terra’s HUD outlined her squadmate’s forms in her view, their battlefield uplink giving localization data, ensuring that friendly fire was far less likely to happen. Health readouts came next, as well as streaming data from Arna and Longkra’s separate Combat AI, Setapoite

 

Hades was a clear orange outline behind her, and she cycled through his weapons systems, selecting appropriate weaponry for the city-wide battle that was likely to follow. It would undoubtedly be a mess of a battle. 

 

Running the calculations for Corellia’s atmospheric density and gravity with the Hades AI, backed up by Setapoite, the projected weaponry would be visible on her HUD should she decide to utilize it. All her own weapons were updated with the data, yellow firing arcs projecting from the muzzles of the weapons she held. Lekht's voice cut through her peace. 

 

“Landing, begin countdown” 

 

Her squadmates lined up on the landing ramp, shouldering their weaponry. Terra ducked her way past Arna’s Anti-Material rifle, to step to the front of all of them. Corellian security was informed of their presence, as were the military forces. She disengaged her magazine, studying the rounds on her HUD, ensuring it was loaded before slapping it back into place. The landing ramp disengaged and she led her squad into the heart of Coronet City’s Blastfield Shipyards and Spaceport

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To the Death...

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With the Rebel Alliance’s ragtag fleet on an offensive vector towards the Sith pickets, Corellian space command was left with little but a few reserve capital ships and a half dozed Corellian Gunships for their own picket duty. Between the few Golans, they would be the only thing defending the current headquarters for the core side rebel command. A few half completed ships were still in drydock, but the scientists, mechanics, and operational staff of the shipyards had long been evacuated to the Rebel Base on Nar Shaddaa. On the fighter scale, the rebel alliance had enough local pilots and pilots on non combat rotation that they could adequately cover the planet from a possible Sith counter attack. 

 

One of those pilots happened to be Beth Andromina, ace pilot of the Rebel Alliance, and double ace pilot of the Imperial Remnant. She banked her X-Wing with a slight push against the rudder pedals with her feet and watched the clouded emerald world of Corellia swipe past her viewscreen. It was hour six of a twelve hour flight, and while her eyes were on the advancing heavy capitals that showed as monstrous blips on the display screen, Dimitri, her astromech, tweedled some new information. 

 

Another bulk freighter had blasted out of hyperspace on an approach to the Corellian homeworld. She began another long turn and stretched her tired shoulders. The rest of the fighter wing fell in behind her even before space command’s comm frequency lit up her display. 

 

“Templar actual. Corellia two.” 

 

It was coming from one of the Golans on the approach, one of the many repeating stations along the incoming route to the planet.

 

“Go for Templar.”

 

Static bristled for a moment. 

 

“Give the Septim's Pale a close pass and escort towards custom’s inspection. Security is tight so weapons are free if anything  goes sideways.” 

 

“Understood command.“ 

 

And with that, the fighters began their approach on the Septim's Pale. Ten of the twelve fighters keeping their distance in case they were called on for a strafing run. Beth and her wingmate made a slow approach. She flipped her comm to guard frequency and ordered Demetri to begin a lifeform scan with the starfighter’s instruments. THis was something they had done at least a hundred times since the deployment to Corellia had taken place a month before, but no one could be too cautious. 

 

Septim's Pale, this is Templar One, prepare for customs inspection before route to ground. Copy?”

 

Andromina

Rebel Alliance Fleet Command - Lieutenant

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Draygo said nothing, her pale-green eyes shifting between her Padawan and Kakuto Ryu. Once again, her expression remained carefully and stoically neutral, even if the seizure of emotion that rattled through the Force suggested that the veteran Jedi was experiencing some strange combination of profound stress, existential terror, and hopeful calculation. Her left eye, however, twitched. But that was easily explained by the lack of sleep over the last week and the acrid scent of cold caf that lingered in the cockpit.

 

Shippy has a state-of-the-art sensor array and the best comms suite this side of the Force. Her engines…” It went unspoken that McShipface was a research ship and her engines weren’t suited to outrun anything faster than a flock of mynocks. “We’re going out there to see what the Sith are mustering at Centerpoint, relay to the fleet, and try to not die in the process.”

 

She got up and led the two to the ship’s armory. It was a small room, barely larger than a Coruscanti closet, but the lockers had enough blasters, breastplates, and vibrodaggers to outfit a squad of commandos. Draygo’s mouth formed words as she punched in the access code--the motion of her fingers clearly indicated that guessing a string of six consecutive numbers was the only barrier between an intruder and access to enough explosives to level a city block. “Help yourselves, the white-caps are duds,” Armiena offered as she tucked one of the aforementioned dud grenades and a concussive flashbang into her belt.

 

“Ryu,” Armiena added, placing her left palm on an armored casket. The little box opened, revealing a pair of lightsabers. The hilt of one was scarred and corroded by a mixture of fire and a battery explosion, but the other was a nearly pristine hilt with hand-carved wooden and leather inlays. She pressed it to Ryu’s breastbone. “This lightsaber was loaned to me during a desperate moment by Roene Givrah. He’s been missing in action ever since Coruscant fell.”

 

Edited by ObliviousKnight
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I erupted into an aura of excitement at Ryu's words to join us. I thought my idea to be silly and embarrassing, but it fit in perfectly. But as my gaze shifted to Armiena, I was humbled by her reaction. She definitely knew something of this man, or more than I did at least, but had remained quiet about it. I could sense the leariness of him, the bond of Master and Padawan an intimate one, and for the first time, I noticed her eye twitch at whatever she was thinking. And so my excitement fell back into recluse, growing silent in the moment as she spoke.

 

Looking into the armory, i only grabbed a single item from it, strapping the best piece across my chest and pulled my vibroknucklers from my satchel, pulling them tight upon my fists and squeezing them to seal them tightly as I took in the plan to memory. It seemed a simple task, but as I learnt on Coruscant, nothing is ever simple, especially in war. If i was to survive this day, i would have to give it my all, even if that meant... i gulped... taking another's life.

 

Speaking of which, I hadn't noticed until Armiena gave Ryu the blade and mentioned its owner that so many Jedi I met upon Coruscant had been missing since, making the realization all the more haunting. Had they became one with the Force? Had they perished like so many we weren't able to help? Or had they simply walked away, unable to bear the moment that swept away so many lives like I had seen on Borleias? The empty pit in my stomach made me worry, but the thought of Coruscant settled my nerves. 

 

Double checking my gear, I turned to Armiena and Ryu. "Ready as I'll ever be." I chuckled.

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And hauntingly,

 

An incredible measure of powerful warships belched into the black pavilion of Corellian space. One after another, twisted behemoths of redoubled metal lurched darkly as they pulled from hyper-space.  The Goliath was chief in wonderment, glaring across the open stretch of space as a bastion of pure power. The obsidian varnish looked as if it were freshly painted, reflecting the blush of colors that fan like heavy-handed torches from it's engines. The Sith had returned in far greater number than before, imposing an terrifying awakening for the several billion that looked to the heavens, only to see the dark side blotting out their very stars. 

 

 

Deep inside the Xhendora-Class Dreadnought, Exodus drifted in slumber within an exquisite cylindrical tank, his wide and powerful body whet with bizarre etchings of black symbols and ancient theorems. It was not entirely bacta that filled this chamber, but a basin blended with outlandish compounds and herbage which filled the Sith King with unnatural vision and a kneading of power. The detached pattern of his breathing was cold, feral even as as he exhaled and the intoxicants bathed his lungs through tubing. Soon, he would awaken to lead slaughter to the treasonous.

 

 

Sith-Imperial Forward Command

 

 

 

Fleet Command (Flagship)
High Command: Exodus
Augmentation: Axial Weapon
Xhendora-Class Dreadnought, Goliath |20/20|


Battle Line Escort: Tradition of Excellence
Commander: Exodus
Task Force Experience: Green, 1XP
Gladiator-Class Star Destroyer, Minotaur |20/20|


Precision Strike Carrier Group: Fighter Command
Commander: Exodus
Task Force Experience: Green, 1XP
Acclamator II-Class Assault Ship, Typhoon |9/9|
EF76 Nebulon-B Escort Frigate, Basilisk |3/3|
CR92a Assassin-Class Corvette, Ambush |2/1|
CR92a Assassin-Class Corvette, Caldwell |2/1|
CR92a Assassin-Class Corvette, Kilchreest |2/1|
CR92a Assassin-Class Corvette, Foxhound |2/1|
 

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Ryu did not need the force to sense Armiena's internal turmoil. Here was apparently a long imprisoned enemy combatant, asking her not only to arm him, but to let him have back in the coming conflict. This was certainly a very dangerous move he was asking her to make, and other than some anxious ticks she made it without hesitating. Her sense of morality had overridden her doubts, and she was willing to risk her life to uphold her beliefs. Once again, Armiena had surprised him, having been expecting her to say shove him in the escape pod. Nearly as shocking, once back to the armory he gave her what appeared to be a treasured memento of a friend long lost.

Ryu held the odd wooden lightsaber hilt in his hand and studied it, pondering its significance.

"You... are very honorable, Mrs. Draygo. I will not forget this."

Ryu took the lightsaber to a bench and set about preparing for the coming conflict. From her armory he took a six throwing knives, two fragmentation grenades, and two flash bangs. He placed the knives in the front of the belt on his robe, then tucked the incendiaries in the back. He also pulled a small length of liquid cable from a dispenser and with a great deal of difficulty, lifting a foot onto the table to supplement his lone hand, he managed to tie a strap to the pommel of the lightsaber. He slipped it around his wrist and pulled it tight with his teeth, then gave his arm a shake to verify that it would not come loose. He practiced guiding it back into his palm and dropping it a few times, then added reaching to his belt for knives to the motion. Having only one arm made it complicated to use a variety of weapons efficiently, but he was fairly confident that this simple strap would save him valuable seconds in the heat of battle.

He knotted the empty sleeve of his robe at the shoulder. In a single fluid motion he twisted his hips to fling the sleeve forward, then ignited the blade of the veridian lightsaber and severed the excess cloth. The blade appeared in just the right spot to begin cutting the sleeve, and then vanished the instant it was cut with uncanny precision. Ryu may have lost a great deal of who he was before, but his ability to handle a lightsaber, even without the force to guide it, had not left him.

As he was wrapping up his preparation, Ryu paused and looked around. He had thought he'd... heard something. Something very faint, like a distant echo coming down a long hallway. He couldn't make out what it was, but eventually dismissed it as one of many signs that Shippy McShipface was in serious need of maintenance.

Ryu nodded in acknowledgement of Genesis announcing his preparedness, then headed back toward the cockpit.

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"Commander on the bridge!"

 

The officers of the Black Bracer came to attention as Captain Jaden Jorus limped to the command console. His eyes scanned the officers, impeccably attired and fit specimens of imperial military excellence. Their eyes danced with the fire of zealots, and every officer to a man bore the patch of Varaka, their vaunted god-king.

 

The dregs of a cult and and a ship built to get shot.

 

He smiled. 

 

I guess I'm home.

 

Jorus was anything but the naval ideal of a commanding officer. Threadbare combat gear bleaching from green to gray, old cybernetics whirring with each movement, a sun-seared face, and wrinkles turning to crevices painted the picture of a man with more years lived than he'd been alive.

 

"Get back to work. At ease and all that."

 

The officers turned back to their posts, but the steel cables under their skin didn't seem to slacken.

 

I guess having the Dark King's eye on you will do that.

 

First Officer Malk, an impressively built Cerean, eyed Jorus's limping leg as the irreverent commander rubbed feeling into it.

 

"Were you injured in the battle Commander?"

 

"Nope. Leg cramp. Report."

 

"We've arrived in the Corellian system sir, and are moving to rendezvous with his Majesty's force now. ETA 8 minutes. We just received the all's well from the Moon Beetle, The Broken Bullet, and Our Velvet Ire."

 

Jorus nodded absently.

 

"And our new toys?"

 

Malk didn't miss a beat at Jorus's informal inquiry. 

 

Good soldier.

 

"All upgrades installed on Kuat are functioning properly. Calibrations and tests run during the transit indicate everything is operating within optimal tolerances."

 

"Those kuati grasscutters really know their ships. I guess pulling their collective bank accounts out of the firing line made them all grateful."

 

"Actually sir, the upgrades were ordered by direct command from-"

 

Jorus waved his hand in dismissal, and Malk obediently stopped talking and went back to his work, an equally muted and fierce anticipation lurking under his starched and dried expression. Jorus knew that they'd gotten the upgrades for "exemplary service", but he'd bet his last arm that they'd come with at least two Holonet conferences, a shouting match, and a dozen bribes.

 

It was just how things got done.

 

Speaking of which...

 

"Let's pick up the pace. Increase forward thrust by 12% and have our cruisers follow us in pattern 22-Beta. And get Zyro to turn that fancy new cloak on."

 

Spoiler

 

Heavy Brawler Escort: Hammer and Anvil

Assigned PC: Nok Morliss (commanded by NPC Jaden Jorus)

Task Force Experience: Veteran, 2XP

Bulwark Mark II Black Bracer |20/30|

 

 

Destroyer Group (Missiles): Focus Fire

Assigned PC: Nok Morliss (commanded by NPC Jaden Jorus)

Task Force Experience: Veteran, 2XP

Captor-class Heavy Munitions Cruiser Moon Beetle |9/9|

Captor-class Heavy Munitions Cruiser The Broken Bullet |9/9|

 

 

Covert Strike Force: Silent Hunters

Assigned PC: Nok Morliss (commanded by NPC Jaden Jorus)

Task Force Experience: Veteran, 2XP

Nova-class Battle Cruiser Our Velvet Ire |9/9|

 

 

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"Forward." Came the grim voice of the Rebel Alliance Commander of the Corellian Theatre.  

And so the cream of the Rebel Alliance Navy came forth from their orbits and shot towards the distant Sith Fleet guarding Centerpoint. 

 

__________________________________________________

Combined Fleet Group under the Command of Godfrey d'Outremer

 

Rebel Alliance Destroyer Group [Turbolasers] |Alexei|

Taskforce Experience Veteran (2xp)

LC-Belarus Medium Cruiser Novarch Ackbar |9/9|

LC-Belarus Medium Cruiser Novarch Sikaot |9/9|

 

Rebel Alliance Precision Strike Carrier Group |Anastasia|

Taskforce Experience Green (1xp) 

TSC-Tapani Class Frigate Eleanor |3/3|

DP20 Corvette Nantes |2/1|

DP20 Corvette Rennes |2/1|

DP20 Corvette Saint-Anslem |2/1|

DP20 Corvette Saint-Marie |2/1|

TSC-Tapani-class cruiser-carrier Vexille |9/9|

 

Rebel Alliance Rapid Intervention Escort: Timely Response |Seraphim|

Taskforce Experience Green (1xp) 

KDY Victory II-class Star Destroyer Red Hussar |9/9| 

KDY Victory II-class Star Destroyer Silent Spring |9/9| 

 

__________________________________________________

Combined Fleet Group under the Command of Leena Kil

 

Rebel Alliance Destroyer Group [Turbolasers] |Sairdonga|

Task Force Experience: Green (1xp)

MCS MC75-Class Star Cruiser: Imperial Momship |20/20|

 

Rebel Alliance Hellriders: |Death Harvest Catchers|

Task Force Experience: Green (1xp)

Squib Needle Ship: Catcher 1 |2/1|

Squib Needle Ship: Catcher 1-2 |2/1|

Squib Needle Ship: Catcher 1-2-3 |2/1|

Squib Needle Ship: Catcher 1-2-3-4 |2/1|

Squib Needle Ship: Catcher 1-3-3-4-5 |2/1|

Squib Needle Ship: Catcher 1-2-3-4-5-6 |2/1|

Squib Needle Ship: Catcher 1-2-3-4-5-6-7 |2/1|

Squib Needle Ship: Catcher 1-2-3-4-5-6-7-8 |2/1|

Squib Needle Ship: Catcher 1-2-3-4-5-6-7-8-9 |2/1|

Squib Needle Ship: Catcher 1-2-3-4-5-6-7-8-9-10 |2/1|

Squib Needle Ship: Catcher 1-2-3-4-5-6-7-8-9-10-11 |2/1|

Squib Needle Ship: Catcher 1-2-3-4-5-6-7-8-9-10-11-12 |2/1|
 

Rebel Alliance Hellriders: |Sith Eaters|

Task Force Experience: Green (1xp)

Squib Needle Ship: Sith 0-1 |2/1|

Squib Needle Ship: Sith 1-2 |2/1|

Squib Needle Ship: Sith 2-3 |2/1|

Squib Needle Ship: Sith 3-4 |2/1|

Squib Needle Ship: Sith 4-5 |2/1|

Squib Needle Ship: Sith 5-6 |2/1|

Squib Needle Ship: Sith 6-7 |2/1|

Squib Needle Ship: Sith 7-8 |2/1|

Squib Needle Ship: Sith 8-9 |2/1|

Squib Needle Ship: Sith 9-10 |2/1|

Squib Needle Ship: Sith 10-11 |2/1|

Squib Needle Ship: Sith 11-12 |2/1|

 

__________________________________________________

Combined Fleet Group under the Command of Kyrie Eleison


Imperial Knight Expeditionary Destroyer Group: Turbolasers  |Deimos|

Task Force Experience: Green (1xp)

Nova-Class Cruiser Ascalon |9/9|

 Nova-Class Cruiser Edessa |9/9|

 

Imperial Knight Expeditionary Light Defensive Escort: Suppressing Fire |Phobos|

Task Force Experience: Green (1xp)

Star Galleon-Class Frigate Clermonte |3/3|

Vengeance-Class Frigate Chartres |3/3|

Interceptor-Class Frigate Francorum |3/3|

Consular-Class Frigate Tancred |3/3|

Sphyrna-Class Corvette Guiscard |2/1|

Sphyrna-Class Corvette Dorylaeum |2/1|

Paladin-Class Corvette Yağısıyan |2/1|

Free Virgilla-Class Corvette Alexandretta |2/1|

 

Rebel Alliance Lend-Lease Precision Strike: Carrier Group |Enyo|

Taskforce Experience:  Veteran (2xp) 

Quasar Fire-class Cruiser-Carrier Azincourt |9/9|

CR-90 Corvette Maelstrom |2/1|

CR-90 Corvette Languedoc |2/1|

CR-90 Corvette Vivarais |2/1|

DP20 Corvette Coeur d’Lion |2/1|

DP20 Corvette Augustus |2/1|

DP20 Corvette Hussar |2/1|

 

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Rebel Alliance Fleet Command - Godfrey d'Outremer

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Draygo had significant difficulty accepting praise from anyone, and noticeably paused while inspecting an armored vest. 

 

“I’m a fool. It’s a requirement for any half-decent revolutionary,” Armiena responded as she donned the armor and stretched her shoulders to test the range of motion. The veteran Jedi retrieved a small vibrodagger and made a delicate cut at the seams on the sides, just enough for her to worm her fingers into the fabric and remove the encumbering weight of the a set of small plastoid plates. The armor would still provide some protection to the vitals, but the absence of the side plates would afford her a nearly full range of motion. 

 

She then retrieved an additional pair of short-bladed vibrodaggers, tucked one of them into her right boot and the other into a scabbard on her right shoulder. A slight adjustment of the clips on her gunbelt brought her lightsaber and blaster pistol closer to the sides of her hips. Closing up the lockers and securing the armory, Draygo sighted a fixed point on the far side of the ship’s miniature hangar and drew her blaster pistol in a single-handed grip. She rested the barrel of the weapon on wrist, clutching her lightsaber in her left hand.

 

Armiena just gazed over the sights of the blaster for a handful of seconds, observing the natural bob of the sights with her breath. It was certainly an unconventional fighting stance for a Jedi--it was more reminiscent of the close-quarters combat techniques that some commando units practiced--but it would allow her to transition from her pistol to her lightsaber in an instant.

 

“Rule number one of combat as a Jedi--keep yourself alive.” Draygo patted her Padawan on the shoulder as she followed Ryu to the cockpit. “Your lightsaber will give you plenty of options. No need to take a life when you can take a limb… and a few kilos of high-grade steel makes for a wonderful cudgel. Ryu,” Armiena tried to smile as she collapsed into the pilot’s seat and began to prime the ship’s powerful active sensors. Instead, she only managed a sort of pained grimace that twisted her mouth and didn’t quite reach her eyes. “If we both live through this day, we will have a long talk about why I’m so terrified of you. It will be a difficult conversation, but you won’t be facing the Jedi Grandmaster completely unprepared. Now.”

 

Her metal hand racing over the controls of McShipface’s astrometrics suite as though it were a rehearsed motion, Draygo focused the vessel’s powerful sensor dish into the void. To anyone directly targeted by the sensors, the surface of the hull would begin to vibrate and emanate at a keening, ultrasonic frequency as it was buffeted by a wave of energy that was outright unhealthy for an unprotected organic to absorb. To the veteran Jedi, however, all she observed was that the overhead lights dimmed noticeably as the sensor arrays spooled up and probed deeply into the deep space surrounding Centerpoint Station. Draygo’s lips thinned as she observed the report and transmitted it to the Rebel fleet--a sizeable fleet consisting of several Star Destroyer-sized vessels, numerous frigates and cruisers, and a Star Dreadnought of an unknown design had been mustering in-system.

 

She just let out a little sigh and gunned the engines.

 

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Darth Nyrys’s Sith fleet reverted into realspace in position to form up with the other forces of the Dark Lord, with the exception of the Abyss Triumphant, which remained out of range of the conflict for the time being. All captains reported green across the board and were ready to bring the Emperor’s wrath to this rag tag band of terrorists, pirates, and dissidents. 

 

“Captain Ladrimayne has the con, ready my shuttle, the darkness guides my blade to Coronet City.”

 

Nyrys had seen enough battle to learn how to discern where the most interesting opponents, and an enemy that she had not yet encountered loomed on the horizon of possibilities.


 

Spoiler

 

Task Forces

Argent Scythe (Railgun Destroyer)

Fair Lady of Iziz: 20/20

 

Veil of Shadows (Light Defensive Escort)

Jendra’s Song: 3/3

Atani’s Vigil: 3/3

The Lucky Pair: 3/3

Xuri’s Resolve: 3/3

Alpha: 2/1

Beta: 2/1

Gamma: 2/1

Omicron: 2/1


 

In reserve

Abyss Triumphant (Interdiction Cadre)

Bewitching Lover(Interdictor): 9/9

Lovelorn Wraith: 3/3

Lust: 2/1

Envy: 2/1

Desire: 2/1

Betrayal: 2/1

 

 

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The Force, that beautiful and haunting song that crawled through the mind of the Exorcist, broke into reverberating cries of pain. The Sith had arrived.

Kyrie steeled her psyche against the eruption of emotions that spelled the Sith’s arrival. It was as if the force itself was in mourning for what was to come. She channeled the misery into her internal flame, letting herself grow bright with fire’s touch. The cockpit of the TIE-Ugly began to glow a faint white. The Song began to return in her mind, a deep and animalistic thing, a reflection of the natural beauty of space above Corellia.

The Force moved. The Song changed its rhythm as more voices were added. Her Watchers had awakened, and they sensed the Dark Side. In the harrowing of her soul, there would be salvation. The Imperial Knight sucked in a breath from the flight helmet, letting the air fill her lungs, spreading its energy throughout her body. She let her fire grow, stoking it to life within her veins. She would need it to devour the sins of those she was to fight.

A mournful cry.

There was another song, one speaking of a dark future.

A sick intention.

Flipping the control yoke of the TIE-Ugly, she sent her starfighter into a spin towards Coronet City. The darkness would strike at the heart of the Rebellion, its citizens. Those unfortunate innocents that were always destroyed in war. The Dark Side was reaching out its hunger, telling of its desire to consume all life. Her own hunger echoed it.

Kyrie did not know what the attack would be, nor its soldiers, but while her fleet would battle above, she would fight on the ground. Her lips parted and her breath left, the words of her song forming inside the TIE-Ugly’s cockpit, transmitting to her Watchers.

A land of deepest shade, unpierced by human thought…

A crashing shook the starfighter as it ripped into the atmosphere, a sonic refrain following it. According to her readouts, the Starport was heavily fortified, but the numerous large leisure parks were undefended. She angled the starfighter toward the massive botanical garden complex that made up the centerpiece of Coronet’s Diamond District. The sudden pull of gravity set her head swimming, and the autopilot took over as she released the control yoke.

Slipping from her crash webbing, Kyrie leapt from the yawning cockpit of the TIE-Ugly, landing on the soft loam of the forest. Even through her boots, she could feel the softness of the moss and the spring of the soil beneath her. She ripped her flight-helmet from her head, shaking loose her multitude of ebony braids before sweeping them back behind her pointed ears.

The breath of the fresh air spoke to her of pollen and rotting vegetation, of mud and entropy. Of life. Her probisci reached from her cheeks, striking against the air, desiring the soup of life. A hunger rose along with disgust and she breathed it away, feeding it to the fires within. Unclipping her saber-spear, she began to walk through the trees, letting her somber song reverberate across leaf and stone.

That weary region of the dead where all things are forgot…

kyrie.png.529a6b96a133828163a998c9b43e5d11.png

 

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Mod Post

It was recently requested that forces be granted to the Sith in a flavor-style manner (not used for specific offensive purposes, but as a backdrop) to engage any forces defending Corellia. After having thought it over, I realized this demanded a mod post with flavor text to establish expectations for this situation and other situations moving forward. As of right now the Fleets system is meant to supplant the former planetary defenses. Fleets are the planetary defenses, and if you don't have a fleet available to defend a planet, it isn't considered properly defended against the might of an enemy fleet.

As of right now, there are no fleets explicitly defending Corellia. As such, no matching fleet/task force sized element will be allowed as a backdrop. This was a difficult decision to make as this is a highly complex situation since it's in the middle of a large scale battle and could potentially affect the narrative of others moving forward given how the battle could shift across the entire Corellian system. Saying yes to this makes a wide array of assumptions that does change the battlefield, even in a small way. As the Mod presiding over this battle, I'm not willing to accept potential fallout for that if things do go sideways, and while it might be "less cool", this is largely a preventative measure to help keep things fair and fun for everyone.

This also sets precedent and relies on some previously mentioned precedent, so care needs to be given to what happens. If this was a smaller skirmish between two PCs and their forces, it would be a LOT easier to sign off on it as it's obviously not going to potentially further affect things past that interaction, but it's not so cleanly cut here. We have a history of allowing things via agreements to bypass pvp rules, but again, due to the complexity of this battle I don't think that's a super feasible route to take here this time.

And yet, despite all this, I recognize the importance of storytelling element at play here. That is a drum I have beaten for a long time, ensuring the rules and community emphasize good writing. I fully understand and respect the value of good writing. As such, here is what I am interjecting into the narrative as a Mod:

The defenses around Corellia are primarily starfighter-based, with perhaps some larger patrol gunboats that are smaller than corvettes but fulfill a similar role as well as anti-air turrets and the like. Similarly, Sith starfighter, bomber, and interceptor squadrons and have been sent to suppress ground forces in preparation for a full-scale invasion. Both forces are locked in vicious combat, evenly matched, and cannot be commanded or referenced except in observation. Neither side is majorly prevented from landing forces or evacuation. This still simulates the tumultuous backdrop of brutal war without the need for larger elements to enter the fight. The "victory" of either side will be determined by the victor of the fleet combat in the system, either via total destruction or last man standing in the event of retreat.

Please understand how difficult it was for me to make this call, especially since it seems like it should have been far simpler than it was. These kinds of things often have a complex depth to them that isn't immediately apparent, and that potential complexity still has a large factor in how certain things are ruled on. That being said, my priority is first and foremost to fairness, and secondarily to promoting a fun environment for everyone. If you take issue with this ruling, please PM me on site or DM me via Discord. 

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Immediately reachable by  charlesjhall@gmail.com

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I acknowledged my Master's words as she spoke, the nervous pit in my stomach on the verge of regurgitation. Still, I calmed himself, letting the Force flow through me and around me, allowing its flow cascade it's natural intent become my serenity. With a breath of exhalation, I followed Armiena and Ryu to the cockpit.

 

The time had come. It was now or never. All I could do was look on as the ships came into view. War had arrived at Corellia.

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The Sable Blade, a Sith shuttle from the Fair Lady of Iziz, finished it’s microjump from the orbit of New Centerpoint to Corellia, and began its descent to the world’s surface. The planet was slowly choking itself under the mantle of industry, a fate shared by many worlds that were entangled in the webs of the intergalactic military industrial complex. Kuat had the foresight to build their production facilities in orbit, but many other worlds had sacrificed their own viability in exchange for the vast amounts of credits that the business offered. The grime and oil covered most of the populace like an unctuous outer layer, as if to subsume them into the machines that they serviced. Many had resigned themselves to their fates as part of the colossal contraptions that served the shipyards, but others fought against the crushing of their spirits. Ironically it was the shackles of industry that most likely fueled the populace’s obsession with ships and piloting, ships were freedom, the chance at a life unbound to the gears and the ceaseless grind.

 

Those that could fly, fix, or con well enough were able to escape the planet’s clutches, to break their chains. It was a perfect example of the Sith code at work, the ordinary becoming fodder for the great, while the truly talented rose to live a life of their own. Such people were always interesting, and Nyrys looked forward to meeting them once Corellia was liberated from the Alliance’s yoke of mediocrity. 

 

The shuttle landed, and the Sith warrior disembarked alone. She had Gwn Marwolaeth  sheathed to her back, and Gwell Na Rhyw thrummed excitedly in its sheathe on her hip. The two blades could be considered to represent the twin driving forces within Nyrys, the sword being her dedication to the warrior path, her discipline in training, and self improvement, and the machete embodied her passionate side, her embrace of the visceral world, and the acceptance of her own desires.

 

She was drawn to a rare jewel in Coronet City’s cityscape, the botanical and zoological gardens. There was the sense of confinement and hunger in the air, an iron bulwark sealing away a savage hunger that was bordering on starvation. Oh and there were animals there too. But as cute and boopable as the durni were, Nyrys’s focus was narrowing in on the the pangs she felt of an emaciated beast that conjured the image of an axe, a sharpened edge empowered by raw force. 

 

The park was closed, with the sun on the verge of setting or rising, Nyrys didn’t know and it looked like it could go either way. She stopped at an unattended snack cart, and after perusing the options she grabbed a few bars, leaving some credits on the cart’s surface. The Sith Lady pressed onward into the botanical section, finding herself amidst a grove of trees. In spite of the constructed nature of the park, this place resonated with natural songs, and Nyrys wanted to run, and pounce, and hunt. The Jedi liked to claim that they had a monopoly on the natural world, but in truth the Sith could be equally at home amidst the wilds, although it stirred a different part of the psyche in them.

 

She spotted the one that she was looking for, a sleight woman with ebon locks and violet eyes. At first glance she looked human, but decidedly inhuman tendrils were protruding from her mouth. Nyrys’s unnatural eyes saw within her a coiling hunger, held within a steel ribcage that glowed whitehot with focus and rage. In another life the woman would have made a fine Sith warrior. She took out one of the snack bars and tossed it in the woman’s general direction.

 

“For the love of all the stars and planets in the sky, we can go grab a meal before we do this, but at the very least, eat the motherpfasking Crunchamunch bar. I could literally sense your hunger from low orbit. Like I can ZapaMap us a nearby diner or something and we can get you some food, my treat. Are they not feeding you guys, or is this like a body image issue thing, because sweetie, you don’t have to kill yourself for some impossible male standard, you look great.”

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As the Imperial Knight walked, the forest’s damp odor began to take on sweeter tones, floral and rich. The humidity caused sweat to bead upon her pale skin, drawing insects to swarm about her in a thick haze. The forest loam beneath her boots became more sticky, black mud clinging to every footfall.  The fallen trees about her carried fungal growths upon their bark, overcome like lepers by their sores, driven to destruction by the entropy of nature.

When from this land I go, what will become of me?

Her proboscis flicked at the air, writhing from her between her lips, filling her mind with the taste of rot and broken earth. The song that passed from her was of her own sorrow, for her future and the fate of all Sin Eaters. A fallen creature caught her eye, its matted fur half-submerged in the dark mud, surrounded by carrion.

The rich scent was coming from its rent flesh, nauseating, yet enticing to the Jedi’s appetite. A part of her mind spoke into her, reaching out for acknowledgement. It would be delicious, and she was starving. Kyrie’s eyes narrowed as she halted her footsteps towards the rotting creature, willing herself to focus. She threw her starvation into her flame, burning away as much of the feeling as she could manage. She stared at the Kath Hound, willing herself to see.

Its flesh was moving. Still alive?

Another step,

No, the carrion had started their work. The fur was moving from the wriggling of maggots beneath. Lidless eyes were swarmed by flies. The mud was strewn with unraveled viscera.

The Force began to scream about her, the reflection of her song was that of warning. There was a deeper hunger here, and it streamed from a nearby being.

The Exorcist wheeled her stance into the Hellepartan variation of Vom Tag, angling the staff of her lightsaber towards the mud at her feet, her grip on the cortosis-touched briarwood loose and wide. Her right hand touched the weighted pommel, caressing the beskar that had been inlaid into the dark wood. She extended out her locus of control, touching the world about her with fire.

Strange words streamed from the figure as it stepped through the mud, the dwindling light obscuring her full vision. It was of the basic tongue but spoken swiftly and in the bubbly form of a preteen. The little she understood spoke of hunger.

The darkness that streamed through The Song made the origins of this figure unmistakable.

Sith.

A wrapped protein bar flew from the Sith’s hand, an offering, for the creature must have sensed The Jedi’s hunger. Kyrie cast out a net within the force, capturing the offering within it. The words of the Exorcist came stumbling from an unstable tongue, filled with a reserved malice. 

Tenet insanabile multos peredo cacoethes…

(The incurable desire to consume affects us all...)

The probisci flicked a challenge, and the protein bar was consumed in bright white fire. The Exorcist began to pour her own emotions into her inner fire, building up her flame for battle. Fire wreathed her exposed flesh, imbuing into the handle of the lightsaber, causing a faint glow in the twilight. The song became mournful once more,

Eternal happiness far away, must my portion be...

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Inquisitor Barca peered down the dogged metal of his ghoulish helm, "Destroy them."

And so, the dreadful machine of the Sith Imperial Armada poured forward to meet their archenemies in a new theater of war.

 

 

Sith-Imperial Forward Command

 Commanded by Exodus

 

 

Fleet Command (Flagship)
High Command: Exodus, Inquisitor Barca
Augmentation: Axial Weapon
Xhendora-Class Dreadnought, Goliath |20/20|


Battle Line Escort: Tradition of Excellence
Commander: Exodus, Inquisitor Barca
Task Force Experience: Green, 1XP
Gladiator-Class Star Destroyer, Minotaur |20/20|


Precision Strike Carrier Group: Fighter Command
Commander: Exodus, Inquisitor Barca
Task Force Experience: Green, 1XP
Acclamator II-Class Assault Ship, Typhoon |9/9|
EF76 Nebulon-B Escort Frigate, Basilisk |3/3|
CR92a Assassin-Class Corvette, Ambush |2/1|
CR92a Assassin-Class Corvette, Caldwell |2/1|
CR92a Assassin-Class Corvette, Kilchreest |2/1|
CR92a Assassin-Class Corvette, Foxhound |2/1|

 

 

Sith-Imperial Command

Commanded by Nok Morliss

 

 

 

Heavy Brawler Escort: Hammer and Anvil

Assigned PC: Nok Morliss (commanded by NPC Jaden Jorus)

Task Force Experience: Veteran, 2XP

Bulwark Mark II Black Bracer |20/30|

 

 

Destroyer Group (Missiles): Focus Fire

Assigned PC: Nok Morliss (commanded by NPC Jaden Jorus)

Task Force Experience: Veteran, 2XP

Captor-class Heavy Munitions Cruiser Moon Beetle |9/9|

Captor-class Heavy Munitions Cruiser The Broken Bullet |9/9|

 

 

Covert Strike Force: Silent Hunters

Assigned PC: Nok Morliss (commanded by NPC Jaden Jorus)

Task Force Experience: Veteran, 2XP

Nova-class Battle Cruiser Our Velvet Ire |9/9|

 

 

 

Sith-Imperial Command

Commanded by Nyrys

 

 

 

Argent Scythe (Railgun Destroyer)

Fair Lady of Iziz: 20/20

 

Veil of Shadows (Light Defensive Escort)

Jendra’s Song: 3/3

Atani’s Vigil: 3/3

The Lucky Pair: 3/3

Xuri’s Resolve: 3/3

Alpha: 2/1

Beta: 2/1

Gamma: 2/1

Omicron: 2/1


 

In Reserve

Abyss Triumphant (Interdiction Cadre)

Bewitching Lover (Interdictor): 9/9

Lovelorn Wraith: 3/3

Lust: 2/1

Envy: 2/1

Desire: 2/1

Betrayal: 2/1

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Ryu pondered Armiena's suggestion that he find a cudgel. It seemed like an odd suggestion, but when he contemplating it he was taken back to the black room, to his hallucinations in the darkness. His mind became washed with the images of blood. He clenched his eye shut and grimaced.

"I think the lightsaber will be fine."

This too seemed ponderous. A lightsaber? He had asked for it on a sort of instinct, but he knew that such a weapon was not common.

 This is a weapon for a Jedi... or...

Ryu felt a pain in an scar on his chest. He thought of the silver blade of the specter that had haunted him in the dark, who had tortured him and he had, in turn, he had attempted to murder. Though in his dreams he had killed the specter, he felt it was still nearby. Taunting him with a twisted echo of his own voice, and a snarling likeness of his own face.

As Armiena promised to talk to him about his past he felt the more unease than the last time they had discussed his past.  Somehow it seemed like in gaining knowledge of his history, he risked losing something he had gained in its place. So he again felt a certain sense of dread about the proposition, and decided to try to escape those thoughts by focusing on the mission at hand. He moved his hand to the back of his neck, and pressed lightly on the outline of an irregular pentagon, popping open a small mechanical plate which extended a the end of cable between his fingers. He pulled and an optical data cable stretched out from his neck, which he plugged into a port on the console near his own seat in the cockpit.

"I'm... taking to Shippy, to see what she thinks." Ryu mumbled, the cybernetic interface in his brain filling his thoughts with data about the ship. As the craft charged forward toward centerpoint, Ryu was beginning to hear the Ship's voice in his head.

"Shippy... Wants to punch them. I... I don't know if my interface is working right." From out of the front view port, Shippy's mechanical arms folded out, its mechanical fingers clenching into a fist as it made a few mock punches. A grin spread across Ryu's face. For the moment, it felt like he had both of his arms again. "Shippy wants you to bring her in close to the enemy so she can hit them with her fists. This interface is probably malfunctioning, but she seemed quite insistent that I let you know."

The arms spread wide as if to say, 'come at me, bro', then went into a boxing pose.

"Shippy and I are friends now." Ryu proclaimed with a matter-of-fact intonation.

 

Edited by Kakuto Ryu
bad sentence

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𝔖𝔱𝔬𝔯𝔪 𝔣𝔯𝔬𝔪 𝔄𝔟𝔬𝔳𝔢

 

 

Coronet City, Corellia

 

Captain Gon'draur did his best not to show his nervousness as the Septim's Pale was escorted down to the dockyards in Coronet City just like he had many times before. When they landed, he began the normal procedures while his crew went about their business, preparing for the normal transfer of cargo. About a quarter of his hold was full of genuine cargo so they began offloading it just like always. The rest of the holds were life sign shielded and calibrated to reflect mass consistent to having a full hull of mechanical parts meant eventually for the small craft shipyards on the planet's surface. He never messed much with the heavy equipment that went into the frigates and capital ships that were constructed in orbit. His Sith handler had not yet given the signal, so they remained in their disguised holds while his crew unloaded crates of parts.

 

* * * * *

 

Corellia Orbit, an hour later

 

It began as a series of flashes that even inexperienced spacers knew meant ships were reverting from hyperspace in the hundreds. While the Rebel fleets had taken their combined might to attempt to push the Sith forces out of Centerpoint a couple of lighthours away, they had left the prize of the system all but undefended. The gamble might have worked, for had they managed to push out the Sith incursion, they could have forced the Sith to reconsider their invasion plans. Though she didn't know what thoughts went through the heads of the Rebel command structure, Qaela was glad they had come to the conclusion they did.

 

Instead of facing the small garrison she had left behind when she had been forced to come to the aid of Kuat's defenders, they now faced the might of a full Sith invasion armada led by the Glorious Spider himself. Instead of quickly overwhelming the weakened defenders of that station, the Rebels were facing a brutally effective war machine fresh from victory after victory that was ready and howling for blood. And, to make matters for them worse, while their fleets were fighting against the Sith Navy, the system's capital would now face the wrath of the Sith's Army led by a truly hacked off Nightsister turned Sith Mistress.

 

Wing after wing of fighters and bombers dropped out of hyperspace escorting over a hundred landing craft carrying armored vehicles and assault shuttles. These shuttles were carrying ten thousand battle hardened Sith troopers from campaigns like Kashyyyk, Kuat, and Corellia along with scores upon scores of assault tanks, speeder bikes, and APC's to aid the Sith forces in their conquest of Coronet City. These men and women of the Empire were instructed to show no mercy to any who stood in their way and not to worry about civilian casualties in this fight. They wouldn't go out of their way to slaughter civilians, but neither would they hold their fire or hesitate to level buildings if it would advance their lines. Qaela had tried to be nice and benevolent in this invasion, but the Rebels had attacked Kuat so now they must face the wrath of the Empire.

 

While the fighters and bombers spread out in rapidly developing dogfights with Corellia's few remaining defenses, the shuttles and landers approached Corellia's atmosphere at rapid speeds. When the first dozen shuttles hit the exosphere over Coronet City, they opened their cargo bays and began spiraling around their center axis, releasing tens of thousands of small, soft stones and spraying them out in all directions in front of the invasion fleet. With their momentum and being this close to the gravity well, they quickly began raining down on a wide swath of Corellia in a brilliant firestorm of meteorites that lit up the sky. These stones were specifically selected for both mass and size to ensure they burned plenty bright, but would be consumed well before hitting Corellia's surface. To those below, it would seem that the sky was falling upon them in some sort of primitive religion's apocalypse of doom.

 

And doom it was, for behind the flaming streaks came the Sith invasion force howling for vengeance. Though some of the shuttles were intercepted by AA placements or Rebel fighters, the majority of them landed throughout the city. Most were able to choose open areas such as parks or major squares to land, but some simply blasted buildings into rubble to create their landing zone. Jamming fields were emitted from each shuttle and lander overloading the comm waves with static and random noise that would hamper any communications throughout the city and further add to the chaos.

 

Each shuttle and lander had specific targets that they were to take and hold, so as soon as they landed, their troops would begin assaulting key areas such as mass transit hubs, police stations, power plants, broadcast towers, and CorSec Headquarters, and the capitol building. They might not all succeed in taking their targets, but the plan was that with so many smaller units attacking all over at once, the Rebel defenders couldn't figure out exactly what to defend or where to attack. Chaos was glorious.

 

Qaela herself was with a group of several hundred troopers backed by assault tanks that was tasked with taking the capitol building along with whatever government officials that were present. Anyone who attempted to leave the building would be shot at and hopefully killed, for she was in no mood to be nice. With her blood red lightsaber and a small army at her back, she led the charge in, cutting through whatever paltry defenders she could until she either took the capitol or met someone worthy to fight.

Qaela Sig

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Like some disastrous Faustian bargain, the Rebel Alliance had redeployed the majority of their fleet from the defense of the Corellian home orbits and had sent them in a glorious attack upon the threatening Sith Fleet. Could they push the Sith forces out of the system? It was very likely, or the Alliance commanders would not have tried it. But had they gambled it all on a pair of nines? Even more likely, as was playing out before the eyes of the Corellian Command. And the Supreme Allied Commander, Godfrey d’Outremer was a notorious gambler.

 

He kept his grim smile as he watched the lines of bombers and starfighters appear over the holographic display, streaking towards the main planet which the fleet had left in their Ion wake. SACCOR (Supreme Allied Commander Corellia) rubbed a hand against the three day old stubble that marked his tired face and looked back to the huddled other commanders. His grey eyes focusing on the short men in tan fatigues, the commanders in charge of the local defense forces. 

 

“LANDCOM Blue and SPACECOM Blue, full report if you please.” 

 

The two men, both as tired as Godfrey, and less hyped on stimcaf, gave each other a sideways glance before striding forward. LANDCOM began haltingly as he referenced a datapad that was constantly flashing with updates. 

 

“Well not unexpected, their forces are much larger than anticipated, the Capital is in danger of falling, even as our men are doing their best. They are sadly overwhelmed.”

 

Godfrey was about to speak himself but SPACECOM Blue interjected before he could. 

 

“It is about the same in local air defense, though we are holding slightly better. It is both our recommendation that we redeploy strategic reserves to assist in the defense of Coronet.”

 

A foolish gamble of course. The best way was to let the Sith waste their resources on conquering a planet they could not possibly hold when their fleet was destroyed. But that would not fly, and even though the Taipani and Hapans gave him a defiant glare, Godfrey cleared his throat with a short cough and took another longer sip of stimcaf. 

 

“We can redeploy a part of our reserves, though they must come from the defenses deployed to external orbits and the shipyards. We cannot leave this final thrust without the reserves they need. We will need to settle for a stalemate in the air, while we redeploy Hapan Marines from the lastmost taskforce.” He turned his grey head to the woman in charge of the Hapan contingent. Just a small force, of only a few divisions and even fewer Nova Class cruisers. “Will that be acceptable princess?” 

 

“It would be our honour commander.” Came the terse and expected reply from the stern faced redhead who had come with the Imperial Remnant’s coalition. “You will be joined by the Fourth and fifth Caridian Divisions, as they are guarding the shipyards. Make due and make us proud.”

 

The commanding officers in their mismatched array of uniforms returned his salute as he turned back to the holotable.

______________________________

 

The four divisions and of Imperial and Hapan marines came like a storm in their assault shuttles, escorted by a spearpoint of XJs and Kwings from the shipyard garrison. The starfighters causing enough distraction for the divisions and their heavy armour to make a hard landing in the eastern city center. They did not split like the Sith ground forces did, but formed an armoured front that advanced towards the Sith main forces, collecting the scattered corellians defenses with them. It would no doubt bog down, but they would hopefully be able to hold the city center until the Sith Fleet was decisively dealt with. 

 

Their commander, a Lieutenant Siri Osgood, A Hapan from Baldava in her early thirties led the way from her hover tank. Directing fire as they pushed their way towards the city center and its capital. The troops under the Elite Captain and Former Mandalore would have to take care of the Sith Command Element if the Rebel forces stood a chance of surrounding and cutting off the Sith invasion. 

__________________________________________________

Combined Fleet Group under the Command of Godfrey d'Outremer

 

Rebel Alliance Destroyer Group [Turbolasers] |Alexei|

Taskforce Experience Veteran (2xp)

LC-Belarus Medium Cruiser Novarch Ackbar |9/9|

LC-Belarus Medium Cruiser Novarch Sikaot |9/9|

 

Rebel Alliance Precision Strike Carrier Group |Anastasia|

Taskforce Experience Green (1xp) 

TSC-Tapani Class Frigate Eleanor |3/3|

DP20 Corvette Nantes |2/1|

DP20 Corvette Rennes |2/1|

DP20 Corvette Saint-Anslem |2/1|

DP20 Corvette Saint-Marie |2/1|

TSC-Tapani-class cruiser-carrier Vexille |9/9|

 

Rebel Alliance Rapid Intervention Escort: Timely Response |Seraphim|

Taskforce Experience Green (1xp) 

KDY Victory II-class Star Destroyer Red Hussar |9/9| 

KDY Victory II-class Star Destroyer Silent Spring |9/9| 

 

__________________________________________________

Combined Fleet Group under the Command of Leena Kil

 

Rebel Alliance Destroyer Group [Turbolasers] |Sairdonga|

Task Force Experience: Green (1xp)

MCS MC75-Class Star Cruiser: Imperial Momship |20/20|

 

Rebel Alliance Hellriders: |Death Harvest Catchers|

Task Force Experience: Green (1xp)

Squib Needle Ship: Catcher 1 |2/1|

Squib Needle Ship: Catcher 1-2 |2/1|

Squib Needle Ship: Catcher 1-2-3 |2/1|

Squib Needle Ship: Catcher 1-2-3-4 |2/1|

Squib Needle Ship: Catcher 1-3-3-4-5 |2/1|

Squib Needle Ship: Catcher 1-2-3-4-5-6 |2/1|

Squib Needle Ship: Catcher 1-2-3-4-5-6-7 |2/1|

Squib Needle Ship: Catcher 1-2-3-4-5-6-7-8 |2/1|

Squib Needle Ship: Catcher 1-2-3-4-5-6-7-8-9 |2/1|

Squib Needle Ship: Catcher 1-2-3-4-5-6-7-8-9-10 |2/1|

Squib Needle Ship: Catcher 1-2-3-4-5-6-7-8-9-10-11 |2/1|

Squib Needle Ship: Catcher 1-2-3-4-5-6-7-8-9-10-11-12 |2/1|
 

Rebel Alliance Hellriders: |Sith Eaters|

Task Force Experience: Green (1xp)

Squib Needle Ship: Sith 0-1 |2/1|

Squib Needle Ship: Sith 1-2 |2/1|

Squib Needle Ship: Sith 2-3 |2/1|

Squib Needle Ship: Sith 3-4 |2/1|

Squib Needle Ship: Sith 4-5 |2/1|

Squib Needle Ship: Sith 5-6 |2/1|

Squib Needle Ship: Sith 6-7 |2/1|

Squib Needle Ship: Sith 7-8 |2/1|

Squib Needle Ship: Sith 8-9 |2/1|

Squib Needle Ship: Sith 9-10 |2/1|

Squib Needle Ship: Sith 10-11 |2/1|

Squib Needle Ship: Sith 11-12 |2/1|

 

__________________________________________________

Combined Fleet Group under the Command of Kyrie Eleison


Imperial Knight Expeditionary Destroyer Group: Turbolasers  |Deimos|

Task Force Experience: Green (1xp)

Nova-Class Cruiser Ascalon |9/9|

 Nova-Class Cruiser Edessa |9/9|

 

Imperial Knight Expeditionary Light Defensive Escort: Suppressing Fire |Phobos|

Task Force Experience: Green (1xp)

Star Galleon-Class Frigate Clermonte |3/3|

Vengeance-Class Frigate Chartres |3/3|

Interceptor-Class Frigate Francorum |3/3|

Consular-Class Frigate Tancred |3/3|

Sphyrna-Class Corvette Guiscard |2/1|

Sphyrna-Class Corvette Dorylaeum |2/1|

Paladin-Class Corvette Yağısıyan |2/1|

Free Virgilla-Class Corvette Alexandretta |2/1|

 

Rebel Alliance Lend-Lease Precision Strike: Carrier Group |Enyo|

Taskforce Experience:  Veteran (2xp) 

Quasar Fire-class Cruiser-Carrier Azincourt |9/9|

CR-90 Corvette Maelstrom |2/1|

CR-90 Corvette Languedoc |2/1|

CR-90 Corvette Vivarais |2/1|

DP20 Corvette Coeur d’Lion |2/1|

DP20 Corvette Augustus |2/1|

DP20 Corvette Hussar |2/1|

GODFREY.png

Rebel Alliance Fleet Command - Godfrey d'Outremer

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Terra let a small breath escape between her pursed lips, accompanied by a hiss of frustration. The sound reverberated inside her confines of her buy’ce, and the Heads-up Display began to shift to accommodate the massive influx of possible targets. The 360-degree viewscreen focused into a line, and the sky of Corellia fell into focus, crimson lines drawing forth from the falling meteors, showing possible impact sites.

A few muttering curses crashed into her ears, the buy’ce’s commlink sparking with the words of her traat'aliit as they began to register targets. A chirp echoed in her mind and Hades began to erase the crimson lines from the viewfinder,

A… Distraction…

The Sith invasion had arrived and had brought a demoralizing meteor shower. Setapoite confirmed that the main threat was far more insidious; the Sith invasion was scattered, which put their concentrated defense at a disadvantage. The AI spoke, giving life to Arna’s mute tongue,

“Reports of… yes confirmed… Assault Tanks near the capital building.”

Terra stood, cracking her back with a quick twist and pointed towards the Corellain capital, a scattered arrangement of towers that dominated the horizon. As the Deathwatch squad broke cover, a storm of crimson blasterfire began to spit about them. The Corellian militia returned fire with their own bolts of green and blue, covering them as they charged towards the capital.

Hades began to parse comlink and holonet relays, gathering intelligence for the invasion of as whole. Closed Circuit Holocamera information began to flash in the corner of the HUD, displaying the battle for Coronet City. Sith locations began to fill in on the Three-Dimensional battlemap.

They were everywhere. At least a dozen Sith supported by hundreds of troops and heavy weaponry. At least one Jedi was marked in the Botanical Gardens, engaging a Sith Lord, but that was the only Jedi that the scan detected.

The crash of a fragmentation grenade shattered the stillness of the squad’s run, marking an increase in the battle’s tempo as they entered the Central Terminal for the Corellian Mag-Lifts. It was swarming with black-armored Sith and the unholy creations of the Krath.

Smack-Crack!

Her traat'aliit roared in a chorus as their weapons spat orange flame. Terra’s voice rang through the Terminal, amplified by her helmet’s loudspeaker.

Oya! Oya! Oya'karir!”

Terra’s assault-rifle churned out a three-round burst of depleted uranium, tearing through into the armor of a Sith soldier who had turned to engage them, the kinetic force throwing him to the ornate stoneway that formed the Terminal’s flooring. Her squad threw themselves behind a series of stonework planters to establish cover as she sent another burst into a running soldier, finding concealment behind a broken pillar. Its ornate carvings had been shattered by what she could only assume was an air-to-surface missile.

A warning beeped in her head, and the fractal HUD focused on an emerging threat; one of the Krath creations had decided to engage the new and oddly armored soldiers. It was a porcine beast with distorted arms that had a series of spines across its flesh, each like a weeping boil, dripping a smoking poison.

Terra stepped from concealment, letting a out a whoop of challenge, catching the beast’s attention with a wave of her arms. It turned to pursue but stumbled as gleaming white bolts of energy began to stitch into its spine. It let out a trumpeting roar, but it turned into a throaty cry as a shattergun round punched out its gullet.

The stern voice of Lieutenant Osgood cut into the carnage, carried through her buy’ce comlink

“Forlorn Hope, move to engage the Sith Command element at the capital.”

Terra’s voice was tremoring with adrenaline as she ran and spoke, her squad charging with her through the fray towards the capital.

“Deathwatch copies.”

Their footsteps were light upon the stonework as they dashed across the mag-tracks, slipping into the smoke and confusion of the terminal battle. The tracks led them into a tunnel, lined with gating and dark as the Maw due to the power-cuts from the invasion.

Immediately, the HUD was alight with the pale green of the inbuilt NODs, which allowed the Mandalorians to skip over the rubble that strewed the tracks. There were a few bodies scattered here, but they were not military casualties, and were in civilian garb. Terra’s boot hit one of the heads as she ran, and what she expected to find to be hard as bone was as loose as a sponge.

Concussion blast. At least they died fast.

Orange light cut through the green of the NODs and the squad discovered the crashed mag-lift from which the bodies had come, burning lightly, half in and out of the tunnel. It was like a serpent of twisted durasteel, caught halfway out of a ranat burrow and decapitated.

A large spire was before them, highlighted in a haze of smoke by the flashes of blasterfire. Coronet’s Capital Thoroughfare.  

Hades confirmed its location, and was within a comfortable distance, delighting in the concealment of the battlesmoke, the rooftops, and the flame. Arna and Longkra retreated into the maglift tunnel’s mouth, scrambling into the twisted wreckage. There, the twins began their rangefinding, reading the windpatterens and distances. Through their eyes, Setapoite began to mark the rangings of tanks and soldiers that fought against the capital defense.

Harjav took cover by a burned-out assault tank, digging his vibroknife into the back of a struggling Sith crewmember, silencing his screams of pain from the flame that had scalded his body. Aorn and Bas’ar took position amongst the shattered granite pillars of the thoroughfare, keeping to concealment.

Terra lifted her rifle and strode forward, taking a knee behind one of the tank’s detached repulsar-lifts. With a slap, the Mandalorian attached the muzzle-brake to the weapon, flipping the magazine out into her hand, exchanging it for one filled with an armor-piercing load. Racking the charging handle, she brought the rifle’s butt squarely into her shoulder, placing the bipod on the wreckage. The HUD displayed the targeting reticle and she placed it on the charging ranks of soldiers, scanning for targets.

Immediately a crimson light caught her attention, filtering through the bodies and blasterfire. Her HUD flipped to 8X magnification.

Sith.

Terra stitched a three-round burst into the officer ranks that had followed their Sith Commander (Qaela) raking rounds into the crowd without much discernment. She followed it with a second burst and angled the fire in an attempt to get the Sith’s attention, to get whoever led them to show themselves. She steeled her nerves and calmed her emotions, letting her finger take up the slack in the trigger.

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To the Death...

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𝔊𝔩𝔬𝔯𝔦𝔬𝔲𝔰 ℭ𝔥𝔞𝔬𝔰 𝔘𝔫𝔣𝔲𝔯𝔩𝔢𝔡

 

Coronet City, Corellia

 

Though she realized it likely had more to do with the shock and awe of their invasion than a mark of the Rebel's defenses, the Sith invasion force was managing to take several objectives. Reports relayed via the network of troopers on speeder bikes to bypass the comms blackout indicated that there was a sizable counterattack forming outside the city and advancing methodically in towards the Capitol. Qaela smiled at that and immediately sent orders for explosive traps and mines to be laid out along their path as best as possible, snipers to take up positions, and for general Sith forces to undergo a fighting withdraw in the face of the superior numbers. She wanted to draw them in and bleed them before pulling more of her scattered Sith forces to confront them. The main weakness of her attack was that she simply didn't have a force large enough to fight them head on, but her troops were everywhere and couldn't yet be pinned down in one location.

 

As she supervised the reduction of the last bit of resistance from the Capitol building, a series of shots lanced out at the cadre of officers that were following her. Another burst let her know more closely where the shots had come from and she smiled even as she ignited her crimson lightsaber and summoned the Force to guide her hands against any more attacks. She and the remaining men around her took cover while a nearby AT-ST turned its guns on the area pointed out by various troops who had seen the direction the shots came from.

 

Once the AT-ST began opening fire saturating the area with its main blaster cannons to keep the sniper busy and possibly even kill them, Qaela ordered the officers to finish securing the Capitol while she went out to clear this annoyance. A platoon of black armored troopers went with her as they picked their way rapidly from one place of cover to another. Qaela kept her lightsaber at the ready to take care of any more attacks as they went out to engage. She wasn't about to go too far and walk into a trap, but they needed to keep their new prey busy until more Sith flooded the area.

Qaela Sig

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Fleet Actions Outcome: Round One

For a brief moment as the two fleets meet and come into range, there is nothing: a calm before the storm. Each side waits for the opening move to act, hoping to capitalize on a misstep of the other. But both sides understand that time wasted is also a double edged sword, and the commanders quickly fall back on their instincts and training. Like a practiced waltz, both sides spring into action, and the first blows are struck.

Immediately the Rebel task forces Phobos and Seraphim move to provide cover for the Sith Eaters and Death Harvest Catchers, respectively, allowing the Hellriders to push their deadly assault. Simultaneously, the Minotaur takes up a point position of intercepting defense in front of the Goliath, and the Black Bracer and the Veil of Shadows task force takes up similar positioning to defend the missile destroyer group consisting of the Moon Beetle and Broken Bullet

 

As the maneuvers start, the Rebels strike the first punch, their hellriders surging forward to harass the enemy missile group, but barely manage to get a few long range shots off before the defensive posturing of the Black Bracer intercepts their attack vector and cuts them off, Taking advantage of the close attack run to severely punish their numbers, culling two corvettes from each group. This was the hellriders' suicidal ploy, however, as the cruisers of the Alexei and Deimos task forces open fire, using the cover of the hellriders' maneuver to full advantage to target the capital ship in their way, now forced to redirect their onslaught to it instead of their original prey. The Black Bracer is no slouch to this punishment, their well trained gunnery crews returning fire to each of these threats in turn, who were slightly caught off guard from this bold maneuver at the outset. They were forced to make do with the original plan of attack, and the Bracer takes full advantage of that to punish them in kind.

In all the initial confusion of these first moments, the Sith flagship Goliath opens fire with its axial weapon on the cruisers of task force Alexei. It winds up dealing a powerful blow that cracks the shields of one of the cruisers, synergizing with the fire it received from the Black Bracer. Immediately after, the first salvo from the Sith missile group cruisers impacts the same ship, near crippling it. At this time, Rebel interceptors begin harassing the larger enemy fleet vessels across the battlefield, interfering with Sith starfighter attack runs.

Almost unnoticed, one Sith cruiser slips away from this formation amid the carnage, circling to flank the Rebel ships and beginning to line up an optimal strike against a less defended side of a Rebel element. Distracting from this, the railgun capital ship on the other side of the formation opens up against the Rebel carrier group, peppering them with intense fire. As it does so, a Rebel capital ship similarly opens fire with a hailstorm of turbolaser fire at the Sith carrier group, with both targets suffering relatively equally initially, but immediately after Rebel bombers break through Sith lines to bombard the carrier group in support of their capital ship's assault, scoring several hits below their maximum potential due to half of them being forced off by fire from the group's frigate before retreating back to the Rebel lines. A similar coordinated bomber skirmish is attempted against the Sith missile group, but is easily fended off from the nimble frigate fire of light escort ships behind the Black Bracer.

 

Two of the Rebel commanders took note of the Sith stealth cruiser breaking formation and activating its stealth technology, and though they begin cycling censor sweeps of the battlefield they are unable to pick up on any trace of it being there. Finally, the Sith bombers are able to take their runs on the Alexei and Enyo task forces, with the latter forces being triple the numbers of the former and the attack run on Alexei unfettered by corvettes. 

 

The opening moves have been made, the bells of war ringing loud in the silence of space. But this is just the beginning.
 

 

GENERAL FLEET ACTIONS:

Sith:

  • The Battle Line Escort group (Minotaur) moves to defend (escort) the Sith Flagship (Goliath)
  • The Hammer and Anvil group (Black Bracer) and the Light Defensive Escort (Veil of Shadows) moves to defend the missile group (Moon Beetle and Broken Bullet)

Rebels:

  • The Light Defensive Escort (Phobos) moves to defend and support Hellriders (Sith Eaters)
  • The Rapid Intervention Escort (Seraphim) moves to defend and support Hellriders (Death Harvest Catchers)


SITH BATTLE DAMAGE:

Incoming Starfighter damage:

  • Sith Carrier Task Force (Typhoon) Damage: OR 6 damage (2x Bombers inbound from task force Anastasia, frigate would take 2 damage or the carrier would take 6 (FAST ACTION))
  • Hammer and Anvil Task Force (Black Bracer) Damage: 8 HULL damage (2x Bombers inbound from Enyo (Veteran ability increases damage by 1, but forced redirect drops it back down by 1), normal Bombers inbound (forced redirect drops damage by 1) (FAST ACTION))

 

Incoming Task Force Damage:

  • Carrier Task Force (Typhoon) Damage: 6 damage (Sairdonga capital ship turbolasers)
  • Hammer and Anvil Task Force (Black Bracer) Damage: 16 (2x Alexei turbolaser cruisers with hellrider buff) + 16 (2x Deimos turbolaser cruisers with hellrider buff) - 2 (Multiple task forces attacking penalty) = 30 damage

 

 

REBEL BATTLE DAMAGE:

Incoming Task Force Damage:

  • Alexei Damage: 3 (Black Bracer veteran ability) + 6 (Goliath Axial Weapon) + 8 (2x missile cruiser salvos) - 2 (Multiple task forces attacking penalty) = 15 damage
  • Deimos Damage: 3 damage (Black Bracer veteran ability)
  • Sith Eaters Damage: Two destroyed corvettes (Black Bracer returning focus fire)
  • Death Harvest Catchers Damage: Two destroyed corvettes (Black Bracer returning focus fire)
  • Rebel Carrier Task Force (Anastasia): 6 damage (Argent Scythe railguns)

 

Incoming Starfighter Damage:

  • Alexei Damage: 3 damage (Bombers inbound (DELAYED), starfighters forward deployment)
  • Enyo Damage: 9 damage (3x Bombers inbound (DELAYED))

 

Mod Note: 
A reminder that commanders can choose which ship incoming damage goes to (assuming multiple ships in a task force or accompanying escort(s)), and task force damage is treated separately from starfighter damage for the decision making process. Assuming two ships in a task force, commanders can have incoming task force damage go to one ship and starfighter damage go to another, HOWEVER once that choice has been made it is locked in for future damage of that type. This was the intent of the rules, and while I wasn't able to find it stated explicitly in the rules I am calling it to be the standard for the duration of this combat. Choose who takes what damage wisely.

Additionally, bombers inbound states that their cap is reduced by one for every frigate present, this means that the frigates automatically tank that damage for their task force or any task forces they're escorting and reduce it to one (unless other factors apply). 

Edit:

Okay, I was super confused over how bombers work, and their governing rules are not centralized in the ruleset at all. Apparently there is a simple hard cap of how many bombers inbound actions are allowed versus any one TF (3), and frigates reduces that cap by 1 per frigate in the TF or any escorting TF. If too many bombers attack (i.e. frigates move in to support/escort), then the attacking commander can choose where to redirect that attack and those redirected attacks get reduced by 1 damage. Commanders still decide which ships in a task force take the damage as outlined above, but if they have frigates available to take those attacks they can soak the damage with them pretty easily. 

 

Bombers inbound damage can never be applied to corvettes as they are not valid targets, excess damage is lost if the only remaining ships are corvettes. Like normal, starfighter damage applies fully to one ship before spilling over to the next, if able.

Edited by Ary the Grey

Immediately reachable by  charlesjhall@gmail.com

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Godfrey's eyes narrowed to grey slits as he watched the outcome of the first nearly futile charge. 

 

__________________________________________________

Combined Fleet Group under the Command of Godfrey d'Outremer

 

Rebel Alliance Destroyer Group [Turbolasers] |Alexei|

Taskforce Experience Veteran (2xp)

LC-Belarus Medium Cruiser Novarch Ackbar |0/3|

LC-Belarus Medium Cruiser Novarch Sikaot |6/9|

 

Rebel Alliance Precision Strike Carrier Group |Anastasia|

Taskforce Experience Green (1xp) 

TSC-Tapani Class Frigate Eleanor |3/3|

DP20 Corvette Nantes |2/1|

DP20 Corvette Rennes |2/1|

DP20 Corvette Saint-Anslem|0/0|

DP20 Corvette Saint-Marie |0/0|

TSC-Tapani-class cruiser-carrier Vexille |9/9|

 

Rebel Alliance Rapid Intervention Escort: Timely Response |Seraphim|

Taskforce Experience Green (1xp) 

KDY Victory II-class Star Destroyer Red Hussar |9/9| 

KDY Victory II-class Star Destroyer Silent Spring |9/9| 

 

__________________________________________________

Combined Fleet Group under the Command of Leena Kil

 

Rebel Alliance Destroyer Group [Turbolasers] |Sairdonga|

Task Force Experience: Green (1xp)

MCS MC75-Class Star Cruiser: Imperial Momship |20/20|

 

Rebel Alliance Hellriders: |Death Harvest Catchers|

Task Force Experience: Green (1xp)

Squib Needle Ship: Catcher 1 |2/1|

Squib Needle Ship: Catcher 1-2 |2/1|

Squib Needle Ship: Catcher 1-2-3 |2/1|

Squib Needle Ship: Catcher 1-2-3-4 |2/1|

Squib Needle Ship: Catcher 1-3-3-4-5 |2/1|

Squib Needle Ship: Catcher 1-2-3-4-5-6 |2/1|

Squib Needle Ship: Catcher 1-2-3-4-5-6-7 |2/1|

Squib Needle Ship: Catcher 1-2-3-4-5-6-7-8 |2/1|

Squib Needle Ship: Catcher 1-2-3-4-5-6-7-8-9 |2/1|

Squib Needle Ship: Catcher 1-2-3-4-5-6-7-8-9-10 |2/1|

Squib Needle Ship: Catcher 1-2-3-4-5-6-7-8-9-10-11 |0/0|

Squib Needle Ship: Catcher 1-2-3-4-5-6-7-8-9-10-11-12 |0/0|
 

Rebel Alliance Hellriders: |Sith Eaters|

Task Force Experience: Green (1xp)

Squib Needle Ship: Sith 0-1 |2/1|

Squib Needle Ship: Sith 1-2 |2/1|

Squib Needle Ship: Sith 2-3 |2/1|

Squib Needle Ship: Sith 3-4 |2/1|

Squib Needle Ship: Sith 4-5 |2/1|

Squib Needle Ship: Sith 5-6 |2/1|

Squib Needle Ship: Sith 6-7 |2/1|

Squib Needle Ship: Sith 7-8 |2/1|

Squib Needle Ship: Sith 8-9 |2/1|

Squib Needle Ship: Sith 9-10 |2/1|

Squib Needle Ship: Sith 10-11 |0/0|

Squib Needle Ship: Sith 11-12 |0/0|

 

__________________________________________________

Combined Fleet Group under the Command of Kyrie Eleison


Imperial Knight Expeditionary Destroyer Group: Turbolasers  |Deimos|

Task Force Experience: Green (1xp)

Nova-Class Cruiser Ascalon |9/9|

 Nova-Class Cruiser Edessa |6/9|

 

Imperial Knight Expeditionary Light Defensive Escort: Suppressing Fire |Phobos|

Task Force Experience: Green (1xp)

Star Galleon-Class Frigate Clermonte |3/3|

Vengeance-Class Frigate Chartres |3/3|

Interceptor-Class Frigate Francorum |3/3|

Consular-Class Frigate Tancred |3/3|

Sphyrna-Class Corvette Guiscard |2/1|

Sphyrna-Class Corvette Dorylaeum |2/1|

Paladin-Class Corvette Yağısıyan |2/1|

Free Virgilla-Class Corvette Alexandretta |2/1|

 

Rebel Alliance Lend-Lease Precision Strike: Carrier Group |Enyo|

Taskforce Experience:  Veteran (2xp) 

Quasar Fire-class Cruiser-Carrier Azincourt |0/9|

CR-90 Corvette Maelstrom |2/1|

CR-90 Corvette Languedoc |2/1|

CR-90 Corvette Vivarais |2/1|

DP20 Corvette Coeur d’Lion |2/1|

DP20 Corvette Augustus |2/1|

DP20 Corvette Hussar |2/1|

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Rebel Alliance Fleet Command - Godfrey d'Outremer

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Terra and 5 Deathwatch Tactical NPCs (contracted under the Rebel Alliance)

vs

The Nightsister, Qaela

 

The HUD of the former Mandalore flashed the deep crimson of warning as the Sith’s AT-ST began to fire indiscriminately throughout the Capital’s Thoroughfare. A blackened jet of earth washed through her viewscreen as the walker made a nearby hit and the HUD refocused out to 2 X magnification. The Sith was marked and highlighted with an orange glow on the HUD, indicating a HVT, which was brought to greater attention by the backwash of the crimson blade the Sith held.

 

Hades and Setapoite designated the targets in magnitude of danger, with the Sith as highest priority, outlined in orange on the HUD, followed by yellow for the AT-ST, and finally purple for the dozens of troops in the Sith’s platoon of soldiers. The Combat AIs began to assign suggested targets to the group, based on their loadout. The squad’s comlinks began to cycle through the encoded frequencies, to evade whitenoise.

 

Terra began to track the Sith through her HUD as the Mandalorian began to angle herself to make the Sith’s approach as harrowing as possible. Her mind turned to her training under Piccalo and reinforced by Lord Ar-Pharazon when she had hunted the members of the Jedi Council; called in those days the POSLWJK, the Protocols On Select Loadouts With Jedi Knights. It had been a hard-fought lesson when trying to eliminate force users; keep your distance and terminate them with weaponry that made force usage difficult. The former Mandalore whistled out a command in her fiery tongue.

 

Atiniir

 

The word was Mando’a for “To Endure” but it was also the Deathwatch code for the execution of an L-Shaped ambush, an oft-practiced military technique which enabled the smaller group of Mandalorians to have a fighting chance against the Sith’s familiar numbers. It allowed for the Deathwatch units to maximize their weaponry along the longest firing axis

 

***** NPC ACTIONS: HARJAV FIELDGREY *****

 

To Terra’s left, Harjav selected his CSPL-12 Projectile Launcher and made a mad dash further to her left, picking his way amongst the wreckage of the Sith’s assault on the Capital. Once in a dead-run, the Mandalorian brought up the weapon, while the HUD gave him his nearly straight firing angle. Leveling the firing arc onto the head of the AT-ST, the Mandalorian fired the impact-primed Thermal Detonator, which left the barrel at 290 meters per second, which was angled for the viewport of the AT-ST.

 

KA-CHUNK

 

The Mandalorian, Harjav Fieldgrey dove into the smoking grass and racked the projectile launcher’s slide, inserting another thermal-detonator into the launcher’s tube. He hoped his attack would be successful against the Sith’s walker, but fate was seldom kind.

 

***** NPC ACTIONS: AORN AND BAS’AR *****

 

Far to Terra’s right, the twins Aorn and Bas’ar maintained their cover of the shattered granite pillars and began to engage their target; the platoon of Sith Troopers. The Chiss Mandalorians checked their XAB-32 Heavy Charrics one final time before bringing themselves to a more vulnerable half-standing position. Raising their rifles, they began placing precise automatic maser fire into the Sith Platoon. They were prepared to run or ignite their jetpacks should they be targeted, but they were eager to put down the Sith threat.

 

***** NPC ACTIONS: ARNA AND LONGKRA *****

 

Behind the squad, nestled in the wrecked maglift, the sisters Arna and Longkra, along with their Combat-AI Setapoite maintained their tracking orders. They were tasked with tracking the Sith, and to engage when ready. Arna watched the Sith’s advance through the scope of her Istiglal IST-14.5 anti-materiel rifle, while Longkra called out targeting data into the chat with Setapoite’s voice. The rifle was sighted in to 1000 meters, while weather and gravitational data was taken in by Terra’s combat analysis unit in the field.

 

“Breaching 1500 meters, up one, wind two knots from the southeast, tailwind, left three.”

 

Arna slipped all emotion from her mind, removing the feelings of malice as she had been trained. Her finger took up the slack in the trigger as the targeting reticle bobbed over the target. She kept her breathing to a normal as she waited for Terra to engage.

 

***** PC ACTION: TERRA *****

 

Behind the cover of the burned-out tank, Terra minimized the squad readouts with a blink, waiting for her prey to step out of concealment, which she did, surrounded by her black-clade cadre. The crimson blade was the giveaway, a mere distraction for her mind. They were still at distance enough to give her little concern, but she knew Sith could cover distances swiftly, but this one was slowed down by her insistence of staying among soldiers without the blessings of the force. A chime indicated Hades’ location nearby.

 

Center of Mass.

 

With her slugthrower resting on its bipod, supported by the shattered repulsar-engine, Terra instinctually closed one eye, taking in the full view of the Sith Lord. Something was familiar about the woman. With the slack already out of the trigger, and the reticle displayed on her HUD, Terra breathed out a small sigh of contentment and sent a three-round burst of AP slugs speeding towards the Sith’s chest.

 

((1))

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To the Death...

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The Black Bracer trundled forward, its engines flaring pale blue against its ugly black hull. The knobby, bulky vessel was a blot on the starfield, with only the thin, white slit of the bridge breaking the monotony of its face.

 

Commander Jaden Jorus watched the rebel fleet from the viewport, arranging for an attack, chewing his lip and flexing his mechanical arm with the hiss of hydraulics every few seconds.

 

"Commander," First Officer Malk broke in. "Several enemy cruisers are lining up an attack run on the cruisers. Scans indicate turbolaser batteries."

 

"Orders from command?"

 

"Unchanged."

 

Jorus relaxed, held his silence for a few seconds, then said, "Full power to the engines. Aim a course directly for the enemy cruisers. Point-blank range."

 

Malk, to his credit, didn't blanch at the order to fly the ship into superior firepower. He likely suspected what Jorus knew. They were the shield, not the sword.

 

Turbolaser flashes filled Jorus's view as the enemy cruisers opened fire, the hulking Black Bracer blocking any effective attack run on the smaller and more nimble cruisers. Dull thuds and the hum of dissipating energy rang across the bridge as the shields withstood the bombardment. Still the ship kept on, steady in its advance on the enemy vessels.

 

The bridge held an eerie silence, punctuated by the rhythmic cadence of the enemy blaster fire. Malk broke then spell when the enemy ships almost filled the viewport. "Approaching point-blank range in 7...6...5..."

 

"Gunnery officer," Jorus said without taking his eyes from the enemy, "give them the teeth."

 

The uniformed Gran nodded curtly and crisply spoke into his console. "Snub gunners! Deploy weapons! Prepare to fire on my mark!"

 

Across the hull of the ship, the unsightly protuberances that gave the ship a cancerous look swiveled and opened to reveal short-range rail-guns. Barely able to adjust their aim by more than a few degrees in each direction, the stubby barrels of the cannons pointed out from the ship at whatever happened to cross their path. The shields of the old Bulwark Mk II were nearly a universal green hue as the bombarding turbolasers assaulted the ship that had recklessly piloted into their midst from every direction.

 

"Do it."

 

"Fire!"

 

A cacophony of explosions erupted as the cannons fired, sending rounds of slag into the enemy shields. Seconds later they did it again, and the enemy responded with ever more turbolaser fire.

 

"Commander! Corvettes have entered the battle zone!"

 

A few officers gawked and swore. That cramped space between ships was a deathtrap. What captains would actually fly into such a hellscape?

 

"Corvettes are...they're taking up positions along our flanks! They intend to penetrate our shields! Sir, our hull is strong enough to withstand them. Concentrating power to the forward shie-"

 

"Belay that order First Officer. Full power to the flank guns."

 

The pause was brief, but deafening. Commander Jorus had just ordered them to sacrifice some of their invaluable defensive power in this firestorm to punish some crazy corvette captains playing hero.

 

"...Aye sir!"

 

The flank cannons roared to life, tearing into the corvettes that had approached the rear of the ship.

 

"Shields dropping commander!" Malk called. "Shields at...shields failed commander!" The barrage took on a new cadence as the blasts made direct contact with the reinforced hull. "Sir, corvettes are taking evasive maneuvers to avoid the flak and... Sir! Missile barrage from the Moon Beetle and Broken Bullet just made contact with one of the turbolaser cruisers! And the Goliath just focused its axial cannon on the same ship! It's shields are down! Scans indicate hull integrity close to failure!"

 

Cheers came up around the bridge, but Jorus didn't change his grim expression.

 

The rebels weren't going to run this time.

 

Chunks of molten slag drifted across the nightmare of space between the Black Bracer and its enemies, some from corvette captains and fighter craft unlucky enough to be caught in the barrage, some sheared off the Black Bracer's own hull.

 

"Fires on deck 2....and deck 3! Mess hall is venting vacuum!"

 

Jorus ignored it. "Status on the missile cruisers."

 

"A bombing run was detected and intercepted attempting to attack them."
 

Jorus closed his eyes, already knowing the answer before he asked. "Their current heading?"

 

Malk looked up, a mixture of disbelief and fear in his eyes.

 

"Us. Sir."

 

"All hands, brace for impact." Jorus's voice remained calm and even. This wasn't pirate raids or imp dodging. This was war, the bloodiest kind. Emotion had no place here.

 

As his orders were relayed, he watched the incoming wings of bombers from the viewport. They soared over, almost close enough to read the personalized stamps the rebel pilots had marked them with. Then a new, deep thudding added itself to the percussive orchestra of death only meters away through layers of durasteel.

 

"Commander! Taking damage on all levels!  Rear passage 1-3 is-"

 

"Just put it on the screen First Officer.

 

There's no need to shout."

 

Outside, half melted lumps of durasteel, the skin that protected the crew of the Black Bracer from the enemy so intent on their death, rolled past.

 

Jorus flexed his arm.

 

Spoiler

 

Heavy Brawler Escort: Hammer and Anvil

Assigned PC: Nok Morliss (commanded by NPC Jaden Jorus)

Task Force Experience: Veteran, 2XP

Bulwark Mark II Black Bracer |0/12|

 

 

Destroyer Group (Missiles): Focus Fire

Assigned PC: Nok Morliss (commanded by NPC Jaden Jorus)

Task Force Experience: Veteran, 2XP

Captor-class Heavy Munitions Cruiser Moon Beetle |9/9|

Captor-class Heavy Munitions Cruiser The Broken Bullet |9/9|

 

 

Covert Strike Force: Silent Hunters

Assigned PC: Nok Morliss (commanded by NPC Jaden Jorus)

Task Force Experience: Veteran, 2XP

Nova-class Battle Cruiser Our Velvet Ire |9/9|

 

 

Edited by Nok Morliss
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