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(L,F&E 53) Fate of the Stormhawk

STAR WARS: The Old Republic > English > Community Content > Fan Fiction
(L,F&E 53) Fate of the Stormhawk

kalenath's Avatar

07.01.2012 , 05:02 AM | #1
<Coruscant shipyard, high security naval slip>

“You are going to do what?” Hala Shinn knew her voice was not respectful, but considering the murderous looks that the crew members in the room were giving the politico who had just spoken, she felt she had to say something. As if the Senator Jontas had no idea whatsoever what he had just said, he repeated it.

“I said, the Stormhawk is an obsolete design. It will be scrapped. Don’t worry, you will all be reassigned to newer, better ships.” Hala felt her blood start to boil, and another voice came, she relaxed a bit as L’trask moved his way forward.

“You should leave Senator.” The doctor’s voice was quiet. The Senator stared at him.

“I just got here.” A quiet murmur went up behind him and the Republic marines who stood near the door to the room looked nervous. They knew. A quiet crowd was an unhappy crowd. A quiet crowd of sailors…? A dangerous crowd.

"Senator." The doctor spoke again, this time in a voice that seemed to convey he was speaking to a not quite bright child. “You should leave. Now.”

Hala was not so polite. “If you don’t get your stupid shebs out of here right now, you will be leaving this ship in a body bag. If they can find all the parts…” L’trask stepped away as the crowd of Stormhawk crew surged forward, but Hala just looked at them. “Stop… He is leaving. Aren’t you Senator?” The politician, seeming to notice the angry almost mob for the first time, nodded jerkily and beat a hasty retreat. As soon as the door closed behind him, the crew came close around Hala, peppering her with worried comments and angry questions. Comments and questions that quickly became angrier.

“They can’t do that.” “Can they?” “What are we going to do?” “This is out home!” “We should do something.” “Yeah… We should…”

Hala raised a hand and everything stopped. She winced a bit and L’trask was beside her in an instant. She shook off his hands and stood straight. “It’s just a headache doc. Can you blame me?”

A snicker went around and L’trask shook his head. “Not in the slightest. Hala…” She sighed and nodded. She was due for therapy again.

“I know, I know… I’m heading there now.” L’trask took her arm and she looked at him. “Doc…”

“I just want to make sure you do get there.” Hala stared at him and sighed. She looked at the crew, who were looking at her with worried expressions.

She sighed. “I will be fine. Just… Don’t do anything rash until we can get some straight answers. From someone who doesn’t have his head up his cargo hold.” A laugh went around the room and the crew dispersed back to what they had been doing when the Senator had come in. Hala shook her head as L’trask led her toward the exit.

The crew was… bored. Ten years of constant fighting, scrabbling, and surviving by the seat of their pants and now they had sat here in this shipyard for the last three weeks. The few who had been with the crew from the beginning were being treated for severe post traumatic stress disorders. Many of the others were being treated as well. The whole crew had been through hell, and not just once, but many times. The battle of Coruscant, the battle of Kuat, the battle of the Fate Shatter… The list went on and on. Aside from L’trask, who never seemed to falter, Hala was probably the least hurt member of the crew. And now t be told that their home, their only connection to their past, was obsolete and due for junking? Or worse target practice? She tensed as the Marines at the door saluted her. She snarled at them.

“Come off it, Marines. I am not an officer. I am a corporal. I work for a living.” The marine smiled at her dry tone, but held their salutes until she, sighing, returned them.

"You are an officer Ma’am." The sergeant spoke softly. “And a good one. Don’t care what the politicos or the brass say.” Hala blinked at that. Then she nodded. She had to maintain appearances here. The sergeant hit the control and the door opened. “Hope you feel better, Ma’am.”

Hala nodded, but her smile was rueful. “I hope I am in one piece when this sadist and his cronies get done with my physical therapy…” She snarled at L’trask but the doctor just stood there until Hala moved. The two Marines were chortling sadly as the door closed. L’trask tapped a clawed foot impatiently and Hala sighed. “I know, Doc, I know… Another session with the torturers…”

<An hour later>

Hala bit back a scream as the sadistic brute that L’trask had brought in made her arm move in a direction it really didn’t want to go.

“Come on Ma’am. You can do it. Just few centimeters more.” Hala swore at the Mon Calamari in three languages, but Crota was unfazed. The medic had faced far, far scarier people, up close. “Come on, that joint is almost loose now, just a few more….” A pop and Hala did scream. “That’s it, that’s it, good… Keep it there…” Hala was shaking, sweating and swearing as she tried to keep her arm at shoulder height. This was the first time since the battle of the Centurion Space Station that she been able to do that. Crota took Hala’s arm in gentle fingers and manipulated it carefully. Hala locked her jaw as the pain increased a thousandfold. “Good girl…” Crota took the wrist in gentle hands and spoke again. “Okay, you can let it down now…”

Hala slumped in her chair as the doctor lowered her arm back to the rest. When she spoke it was soft and earnest. “Has anyone ever told you that you are a special breed of monster worthy of inclusion in the ranks of the Sith?”

Crota smiled a bit sadly. “Every day corporal. Every day. We will need to keep exercising that joint.” Hala groaned. “It shouldn’t hurt as much now that you have gotten it loose again. Now the leg…”

Hala shook her head. “Doc…”

But Crota was unmoved. “Look, if you don’t exercise it, it will stiffen up again, and we might have to rebreak it. Again.” Hala winced at that. She hadn’t kept up with her therapy and Crota had been… less than gentle when she had resumed. Arguing with the doc didn’t work though. So Hala sighed and raised her leg to maximum extension. It hurt, but nowhere near as bad as it had. Crota smiled. “Good. Now the treadmill.”

Hala’s eyes went wide at that. “Doc…”

But Crota was firm as she held out a flippered hand. “No time like the present Hala.”

Hala sighed again and stood up slowly. She shuffled towards the treadmill, or as she called it, the ‘deathmill’.

“Be glad they don’t let me have a gun doc…” She said in a dangerous voice as she climbed into it. Crota snapped the safety straps around her and Hala took the poles in her hands. Then she blinked as Crota set the machine. “You got to be kidding, level 5?” She had only ever managed to get through level 3 without collapsing. Crota moved to the control console and smiled. Hala shivered from the doc’s smile. The machine started up and she focused on her feet. She wouldn’t let that blasted doc drop her today. She wouldn’t…

Crota carefully hid a smile as Hala’s face became a mask of concentration. Anger was good for the soldier. It made her focus. And if she focused on hating the doc, well, the corporal couldn’t possibly hate Crota as much as she hated herself sometimes when she failed to save a patient. So… A little pain and maybe, just maybe, Hala would emerge better off. She did keep a close eye on the readouts however. And while Hala’s machine would read level 5 no matter what. Crota wouldn’t let it injure her. She kept her face controlled as her latest patient worked, sweated and hurt her way to recovery.
My stories in order:
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kalenath's Avatar

07.01.2012 , 05:08 AM | #2
<Two hours later>

Hala was still sweating as she sat in her room, toweling herself off. She would never admit it to the doc, but the exercise did make her feel good. Now if only it would stop hurting. She hadn’t hurt this badly since she had woken in the Stormhawk’s medical bay with a blaster fried larynx and two blaster holes in her lungs. The structural beam that had caught her could have killed her, would have killed her if one of the crew hadn’t shoved her out of the way.

She would remember the sound for the rest of her life. The shout, cut off in midword, and the solid metal thump as the beam hit the deck. She tensed, again, in memory. The bomb hitting the viewport, the air being blown out into space, the three crew who hadn’t had intact suits dying quickly and noisily of asphyxiation, but they were the lucky ones. Two of the crew had been blown out into space before the emergency bulkhead had dropped over the shattered viewport. Their suits had been intact, but… They hadn’t been found or rescued. Their screams would haunt her for the rest of her days, fading into the distance as the ship travelled further and further away from them. She shook herself, trying to lose the memory, but it wouldn’t go away. The doctors had given her a bunch of pills, but she had taken the first batch and been violently ill. Apparently she was allergic to some of the meds, so they had put her on others, that didn’t help. And she wasn’t going to say anything. She wanted to remember. Tech Jind and Gunnery Chief Lokam. Those had been the names. If only she had been… If only…

The chime of the door slammed her awake. She cursed. She had dozed off! She shook herself, relaxing automatically from her combat crouch and hiding the hold out blaster that was all she dared carry now. If they caught her with that on the ship, she would likely get in trouble, but old paranoia died hard.

“Enter.” She spoke in an even voice. The door hissed open and she sprang to attention, even though her body protested. When two officers in dress uniforms appeared at your door, any soldier snapped to, especially when they were admirals. “Sirs…”

“At ease Corporal Shinn.” At those words, while Hala’s body relaxed, her mind tightened. The admiral on the right was a devonarian female who wore the insignia of the Judge Advocate General Corps. The one on the left, who she recognized as a man Mace knew named Jiang Makarian, wore the bars of fleet. Hala stood, although her leg was killing her and spoke quietly.

“Admirals, I apologize, I have nothing to offer you except water.” She said slowly. Makarian laughed.

“Oh no, corporal, we can’t have that…” He produced a flask from a hip pocket, and then cast a sidelong look at the other admiral. “If my esteemed colleague has no problem with that of course.”

The Devonarian laughed. “Like I don’t have my own…” She pulled a flask of her own out of a pocket and Hala stared at them. When Admirals started being buddy-buddy, bad thing were coming.

"Yes, Corporal." Makarian nodded to her. “We come bearing news. And not news you want to hear.” Hala stiffened back to attention, but Makarian waved her to a chair. “You will want to sit down.”

"Well..." Hala looked at him and shook her head slowly. “With all due respect Sir. I would prefer to stand. I need to keep using the leg or the docs say it won't get any better.”

Makarian looked to his colleague who sighed. “Hala Shinn, my name is Admiral Cor Vesta. I am here as a representative of the Judge Advocate General Corps. It is my duty to inform you that you are under arrest.” Hala didn’t react visibly, although she felt as if she had been kidney punched. “The charges are desertion from the Republic Special Forces, espionage, and murder.”

"I see." Hala nodded slowly. “May I ask the specifics?”

The Admiral nodded. “You were seen fleeing a Special Forces base where two soldiers, Colonel Dande and Master Sergeant Halace were found murdered.” Hala froze. “Records show that evidence was removed from secure lockup on base, by you. We are looking for your accomplice.” Hala smiled grimly. “We will find her. You would do well to assist us.” Hala just smiled. “Corporal…”

“Permission to speak sirs?” Makarian looked at his companion and they nodded. Hala smiled, both sad and angry at once. “You won’t find her. Ci Torren is dead.”

"That wasn’t Ci Torren." Admiral Vesta sighed. “But we did get DNA samples while she was in lockup. We will find her.”

"Good luck, Ma’am." Hala smiled again, this time all sad. “Her name is Nia Korr.” At that Admiral Makarian stiffened. “And the Sith have her prisoner, somewhere.” At that both admirals froze.

"I...see..." Then Admiral Vesta sighed. “Difficult to prove.” Hala smiled grimly. “That doesn’t change that fact that you are in big trouble.” Now Hala just shook her head. “Corporal…”

“Whatever you are selling Admiral, I want none of it.” Hala just shook her head. Both admiral stared at her, and Hala just sighed as she sat. “You want something I can give you, so you try blackmail. You can kiss my choobies. I don’t work that way. Take me to court, please. I want your people to explain how I managed to kill two fully armed, and armored Special Forces troopers -yes I saw and spoke with them shortly before that- with a blaster pistol while I was getting shot running away form the base!” Her voice was loud, but she controlled it again. Both admirals looked stunned and she snarled. “Oh, didn’t you know? I got shot by Special Branch scum right about then. So go ahead, try and pin those murders on me. Please…”

"Corporal..." Admiral Makarian sighed. “You don’t understand.”

"What is to understand?" Hala shook her head. “This ship is an embarrassment to the Republic and it's Navy. We had a Senator in here this morning telling us the ship would be decommissioned and scrapped. And you can’t find Boss. So… We are an embarrassment, and you are going to sweep us under the rug. Go ahead and try admirals. Please…” She lay back on her bed and started counting bolts in her ceiling.

A few minutes later, both admirals left the room. She didn’t miss that the surveillance camera over the door came on and the door clicked shut and locked behind them.

My stories in order:
Love, the Force, and Everything Discussion thread here

kalenath's Avatar

07.01.2012 , 05:13 AM | #3
<An hour later>

L’trask just sat silent as the two Admirals finished their proposal. He didn’t move, didn’t even blink. Of course Trandoshans didn’t blink nearly as often as other races, but still... Both looked at each other. Finally, the male human, Makarian spoke.

“Well?” L’trask just looked at him. Makarian tried again. “Will you help us?” L’trask turned to stare out the window. It wasn’t really a window, instead it was a holographic representation of space outside the ship, Medical was deep within the ship, and as such was way beyond any chance for a viewport or window. But the doctor still found he enjoyed looking at space. Especially when all he wanted to do was jump across a table and rend people limb from limb. Being a pacifist didn’t mean he didn’t get angry after all. Finally the doctor turned back to the admirals and shook his head slowly.

The Devonarian, Vesta, blinked at him. “Doctor, you have to see it is in her own best interests to plea bargain her way out of this. If she goes to trial it will be a circus.” L’trask snorted. Vesta stared at him, annoyed. “Something funny?”

"Oh yeah." L'trask just smiled widely, a fearsome sight. “You trying to make me think you have her best interests at heart. That’s funny.” Vesta bristled but L’trask turned his monitor so they could see it and keyed a control. The monitor changed to the view from a surveillance camera. The one in Hala’s quarters! They watched as the scene they had done with Hala played out again.

"What the...?" Admiral Vesta snarled. “Doctor, consider yourself under arrest, for violation of military security regulations.”

Again, L’trask laughed. “Check your logs, lady. I am not in your military. I am a civilian practitioner attached to this ship. And… before you get all high and mighty… What does your Code of Military Justice say about the duties and responsibilities of a Chief Medical Person aboard ship? Which I am, by the way.” Both Vesta and Makarian froze. “Get out of my medical bay, and leave my patients alone.” The doctor turned his terminal back to face him and went to work, leaving both admirals to fume. But, they both left quietly. After all, no one outranked a Chief Medical Officer on his own turf. Not an Admiral, Emperor or Supreme Chancellor.

As they walked away, Makarian sighed. “Well… That went about as I expected. I warned you.”

"Yeah..." Vesta sighed. “But… With so much pressure coming down from on top, Jaing, we can’t keep them here much longer. The Supreme Chancellor is coming down on The Judge Advocate General for delaying the pardons, we have ‘special interest’ lobbies out the wazzo who are just praying to get their paws, claws, tentacles, whatever on this ship and her weapons, we have six different suits listed so far against this ship and her crew for piracy –most of which are total baloney- and we have ‘stern letters’ from the Sith Empire demanding the crew be turned over to them for ‘crimes against the Empire’.” Vesta shook her head slowly. “I don’t know what to do. They won’t work with us, and we can’t just leave them here.” She sighed. “Sooner or later one of the nutcase groups will figure out everything we have set in place and get aboard.”

"Let them." Makarian snorted. “Have you seen what this ship has for anti-intruder defenses?” Vesta just looked at him and Makarian just shrugged. “Hey if they want to board this ship, armed and ready to kill Republic soldiers, I have no qualms whatsoever with blasting their lousy carcasses back into space. Or some of the nastier things…” His grin was vicious.

"That is all we need Jaing." Vesta shook her head. “Some ‘fact finding’ team comes aboard and gets slaughtered. Oh the media would love us, wouldn’t they?”

"So?" Makarian shrugged. “They couldn’t care less about us. As long as they get their ratings. If a few hundred, a few thousand or a few million of us soldiers die, why should they care? It’s not like it’s their problem. Their problem is selling their garbage. And of course ‘why can’t we all just get along’.” This last was bitter.

"Admiral..." Vesta shook her head. “I know you have had problems with them Jaing…” She broke off as her companion topped short in the hallway.

When he turned to face her, his face was suffused with red. “Problems? Why would I have problems with them? They publish our fracking movement orders as soon as they steal them. And the Sith get them the same farkling day. I know those osik for brains are responsible for the loss of task force Victorius. I know they are. But oh, one of them breaks a nail and it’s ‘infringement of the free press’. I’ll free their dumbosik press, right out the fracking airlock…”

"Jaing… " Vesta shook her head. “Admiral Makarian…”

The human admiral controlled himself with effort. “You want to make a nice media show and then whitewash this mess? You go right ahead. I won’t help you. I won’t be party to this.” With that, he turned and stalked off. The Devonarian admiral stared after him for a long moment, before sighing and starting back towards the innards of the ship, maybe she would find someone who would talk to her.


Admiral Makarian found himself in one of the Stormhawk’s observation blisters. He stood and smiled as he saw the vast expanse of space laid out before him. This was what he lived for, what he loved. Not the petty backstabbing, infighting and political garbage of the Admiralty, but the feel of a deck under his boots, The thrum of the engines as the ship moved across the starts, the…A throat clear and he turned, only to freeze as he saw who had entered the blister behind him.

“No. Fracking. Way… Mace?” He stared at the form of Stormhawk Boss.

Boss sighed. “We are in deep, admiral. Neck deep and sinking fast. Briana was on the Victorius wasn’t she?” Makarian nodded, and tears were falling His daughter had been all the family he had left after the Sith had overrun his home world and bombed it from orbit. “I am sorry. I know about losing kin.”

Makarian sat on a bench that was the only remaining piece of equipment in the blister. He thought about asking what had happened to the rest and then decided it wasn’t any of his business. “Mace. I… I am confused. Who do I serve now? The Senate? The Admiralty? The Special Interest groups? The fracking media? Everyone has their fingers in my face and I can’t bite any of them… I… I want to command a ship again… It was so much easier…”

Stormhawk Boss nodded. “I may have a way you can do just that…” Makarian stared at the armored figure and for the first time since he had come aboard, hope lit his face. “But I need your help.”

"You are kidding...?" Makarian blinked and then looked downright eager. “Do I get to shoot some media scumbags?”

"Well..." Boss laughed. “Now that you mention it, you might…”

"Hmmm." Makarian’s eyes lit up and he smiled as he extended a hand. “Whatever it is, count me in. Plan?”

"Well..." Boss nodded. “The whole problem, as I see it, is that this ship is here. But what if... She wasn’t…?”

"Huh?" Makarian stared at him and then his eyes went wide. “You cannot be thinking what I think you are thinking…” But an evil grin crossed his face. “Oh my god… you crazy sack of osik…”

Boss nodded. “Still in?”

Makarian grinned. “Oh you couldn’t drag me away with a tractor beam…”
My stories in order:
Love, the Force, and Everything Discussion thread here

kalenath's Avatar

07.01.2012 , 05:15 AM | #4
<A week later, Coruscant Space Traffic Control, sector three>

It was a fairly slow day for controller Tandaik. She had only had, oh, a thousand or so arrivals and departures. Compared to the major spaceport hubs, that was nothing at all. She actually liked this part of the crowded section of space that was Coruscant. Sure, the military types had their own sections, and they didn’t always tell her what they were going to do before they did it, but with the spaceport sealed off, not a lot was going on and she could actually catch her breath between emergencies and near emergencies. Then she blinked. A code flashed on her console and she flexed her mandibles, what Verpine did instead of pursing lips, as she saw the three shuttles moving towards the spaceport. Yes they had filed a flight plan, but… She shook her head and called them.

“Shuttles Hiegh ho, Yo ho and Curly Joe, this is space traffic control, please respond.” She shook her head, humans and their weird names… A voice, probably human from the inflection, came back immediately. Anyone who didn’t respond immediately when STC called would face at best a lengthy prison sentence and at worst, a flight of interceptors to blow the offending ship or ships to constituent atoms. It hadn’t been that long ago that the Sith had mounted their attack after all.

A male voice replied, a disciplined one. “Space Traffic Control, this is the shuttle Curley Joe, leading this flight. Over.” Tandaik nodded. Military then. At least they had a clue how to respond.

She keyed her com. “Shuttle Curley Joe, you have deviated from your flight plan. In three minutes you will be entering a restricted zone. The battle satellites in that area are armed, repeat armed. Return to your flight plan. Over.”

The voice of the pilot came back. “Space Traffic Control, squirting coded burst on frequency five. Over.” Tandaik would have blinked at that had she been a human, but she focused on her screens and yes, the coded burst came through. It decoded and she nodded slowly. Blasted cloak and dagger military types. Well at least this time, no one had gotten killed.

She keyed her com again. “Message received and understood. Next time give us more warning. You are less than two minutes out now, let me contact the shipyard. Over.” She opened her com to the shipyard. “Military shipyard Highstop, this is Space Traffic Control, sector three. You have three shuttles approaching your exclusion zone. Their code checks out and they say they are on a tour of the Valorous.”

A startled voice came back. “Space Traffic Control, say again? The Valorous is only a keel right now. What would they inspect?” Tandaik froze at that, and then her hand was slapping an emergency button.

<On the shuttle Curley Joe>

The voice of the pilot came from up front. “That tears it... Alarms going up all over, sir.” A muffled profanity came from behind him, but he was too busy to look. The assault team commander turned to his people.

“Right, that’s it. They have seen us. Plan six, it by the numbers.” The black armored form sat at his console and watched as the other two ships in the flight split away. Suddenly space came alive as decoys flew from the three shuttles and powerful jammers came on line. He grinned under his helmet. Two minutes. He turned to his soldiers. All of them were looking at him.

His voice was taut with readiness and hate now. “Time for some payback. That ship is going to be dust.” The platoon of fully armed Sith commandos shouted their battle cries with him. This would be a good day. The moored and powered down form of the hated pirate ship Stormhawk was growing now in the viewport and he allowed himself a feral chuckle. They would never know what hit them…

<On the Stormhawk>

“Here they come.” The soft voice had Makarian smiling.

Makarian looked at the armored form and nodded. “Shall we?”

A feral grin was in Boss’ words when he spoke again. “Lets.”

<Shipyard defense control>

“What do you mean ‘we can’t get a lock on them?’ They are right there! Someone use your eyes!” The shipyard defense coordinator was cursing up a storm. All this high tech gear and they couldn’t swat three shuttles?

A subordinate spoke up, frantic. “They are so small, they are evading our turbo lasers.” That wasn’t possible! Not at that range and not for lumbering shuttles. The coordinator snarled at this subordinate as he looked at his terminal.

He cursed again, louder. “Go to local control on the quad guns, something is obviously wrong with the sensors, idiots. We have been hacked.” A startled voice came from behind him and he spun. “What now?” The tech waved at the main screen and the coordinator froze.

The three shuttles had been following an evasive course, but their goal was clear. The moored and defenseless bulk of the cruiser Stormhawk. But now, the ship in question was moving! Her shields were coming up and…

“What the flarg? Get me the officer in charge over there!” He froze as his main viewscreen changed without any input from his techs and an armored face stared impassively back at him. For once, the commander was struck completely speechless.

Stormhawk Boss spoke. “Thank you for your hospitality. But we have business elsewhere.” The defense coordinator barely noticed the guns of the ship firing, trying to wipe the three shuttles out of space, because now the Stormhawk was moving away from the shipyard!

“You won’t get away…” The defense coordinator wondered who had spoken, so calm and unhurried. Then he realized he had.

Boss spoke, and it was kind. “Who said anything about getting away? We just want to die well.” The com channel closed and the defense station became chaos as the techs tried to do their jobs, but the defense coordinator felt something he hadn’t felt in a long time. Sadness…

The same unhurried, calm voice that was so like and unlike his spoke again. “All guns to local control. Destroy the Stormhawk…” The quiet command brought everything in the command center to a screeching halt. All of his people looked at him, and he sighed. “We can’t let them get away. Do it… It’s what they want…”
My stories in order:
Love, the Force, and Everything Discussion thread here

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07.01.2012 , 05:18 AM | #5
<Aboard the Shuttle Curley Joe>

“I thought you said that ship was powered down, moored, defenseless…” The assault team commander was staring in shock as his target accelerated, but not away, towards him and his now exposed forces.

“It was. Everything I found in the records, everything in the files I sliced, everything said the ship was offline…” the team’s tech specialist was working feverishly, trying to keep the Republic sensors spoofed, trying to figure out what was going on. “Whoa!” The tech shouted as fire started coming in from… everywhere. The assault team could only stare in shock as the Stormhawk took the full brunt of fire from the shipyard’s defenses.

“Some kind of Republic trick then…” But his voice trailed off as he saw the damage the battlecruiser had taken. Whole swaths of her hull lay open to space, and even as he watched, more turbo lasers came in and pieces of the ship went flying. He shook his head. “Pilot, while they are distracted, evasive, get us out of here…”

The shuttle took off like a scalded mynock as the pilot tried to make for open space, and the edge of the gravity well. Normal shuttles didn’t have space for hyperdrives, but this was no normal shuttle. And they almost made it. Something slammed into the ship and the assault team commander heard the pilot curse.

“We just ran into something, something… big…” The pilot broke off and the team commander could only stare at the expanse of white and brown hull that had appeared in front of them. The assault team commander felt his jaw go slack as he recognized the ship. The Stormhawk!

Get us the flarg out of here! But it was too late. Bright bolts of energy slammed into the shuttle and the last thing he heard was the screams of his crew. The last thing he thought was an incredulous How the hell did they do that…?

<Aboard the Stormhawk>

“Report.” Boss' vocie was quiet and calm.

The ship’s temporary XO stood up from his console and smiled. “Shuttle destroyed. We snagged a couple of floaters. Probably a Sith assault team.” Boss nodded. “Stealth is nominal. I thought you had flipped. How the flarg did you manage to get this… contraption to work in the first place?”

Boss snorted. “Sheer desperation actually. We were running from a Sith battle fleet. We holed up in an asteroid field.” Makarian winced, and Boss nodded. “Maybe not one of our brighter moves, but while we were powered down, we found a wreck, an old Arkanian design. No life, it had been there at least a thousand years. We found some very interesting things aboard it, including the crystals for the stealth systems. Unfortunately, we have never been able to find any more.” Makarian nodded. Stygium cloaking devices were known, if unreliable. Personal cloaking fields were much more compact, and a bit more reliable. Of course the problem with all of them was that the crystals that powered them were rare, and degraded as the systems were used. Boss sighed. “Oh, there she goes…”

Makarian tensed and then sighed himself as he saw the explosion in the distance. “RIP Stormhawk?”

Boss snorted. “Hardly… They will be figuring it out right about…”

<Spaceport defense center>

“What do you mean that is not the Stormhawk?” The coordinator’s voice was low, but still fierce and the tech swallowed.

Her voice was scared. “Sir… IFF says it is, but… Mass readings are wrong, there are no life signs and…” She waved towards her console and the coordinator tensed as he scanned the readouts.

"Mass is commensurate with a hammerhead cruiser…" He shook his head, dumbfounded. “Wait a minute… where is the carrier section…?”

Another tech spoke up halting. “Sir… The Triumphant isn’t in her berth.” The coordinator stiffened in shock. The Triumphant had been in for hyperdrive replacement and her crew had been reassigned. Other than a skeleton watch, no one had been aboard her.

The coordinator stiffened. “Are you saying we have lost the Triumphant and the Stormhawk?”

"No…sir…" The tech shook his head. “I think we just blew up the Triumphant sir…” The coordinator stared at the tech and everyone in the room braced for an explosion. But instead, the man started laughing.

“Oh… boy… We are in such trouble… That was a very good trick… Good luck Stormhawk, you are going to need it… Let those politicians try and use them… Ha!” The techs all stared at each other but the coordinator just kept laughing. He was still laughing when the MPs came. It took two of them to hold him down for a medic to sedate him.
My stories in order:
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07.01.2012 , 05:22 AM | #6
<A day later, hyperspace>

Jaing Makarian, formerly Admiral Jaing Makarian -probably now wanted felon Jaing Makarian, he thought with a sigh- sat and pondered his life. He wasn’t sure about this. But then again, he wasn’t sure about a lot in his life. Not since the Victorious had been wiped out. He hadn’t been close to Briana. She had taken her own path. And while he had tried to be supportive of his daughter, he had known that if he hovered, stayed too close, he would have stunted her growth, clipped her wings. So he had maintained his distance, and she had understood. They had cared for one another, for sure, but… It wasn’t until the news had come that the Victorious had been wiped out that the bottom had fallen out of his world. He knew now, what Will must have felt. But this… This… He shook his head.

A voice came to him. “Admiral?” Makarian turned and shook his head. The lieutenant was the second highest ranked Republic person aboard after him. When they had taken over the Triumphant to use the ship in their escape, she had been in charge of the skeleton crew. She hadn’t had any idea at all what was happening, and she blamed herself for that. And for not fighting. But she was senior among the. Prisoners? Pressees? What was the term for naval personnel who were abducted and held to keep them alive? He nodded to her. “What happens now, Sir?”

"I don’t know Lieutenant Deering." Makarian sighed. ”I assume that Boss will drop us all off as some isolated Republic outpost. You people anyway. I can’t go back… Not now…” The lieutenant stared at him and he sighed. “Come on LT." The Admiral shrugged. "They have to know by now that I helped the ship escape. Are your people being treated okay?”

"Yes, sir." Deering nodded again. “Two of my people got in a brawl. Nothing major, bruises and a few cuts. The medic here is good.”

"That he is." Makarian nodded. “Carry on LT…” The Lt seemed at a loss for a moment, and then saluted. Makarian sighed, and then returned it. Then he went back to his perusal of the inventory. The ship needed everything from air to toilet paper… He sighed. An Executive Officer’s job was never done…

<Another compartment, not too far away>

“I don’t like lying to him.” The female voice was low.

The reply from another female voice was just as low. “You think I do? Come on, you know what will happen if he finds out the truth.” A soft sound that was part sigh and part groan was heard. “I know, I know. Hopefully, this won’t take long. He… He deserves to know for sure.”

"Is that where we are going?" The first voice sounded dubious. “Do you really think we can find anything? I mean it has been four months…”

"Yeah." A snort came now. “Stranger things have happened and we do owe him for what he has done for all of us.”

The first voice spoke again, this time angry. “I know, I know, just… Give me a straight fight. Find someplace we can hit and we will gladly take it apart, hostages or no.”

The second voice was understanding. “I know Captain. I know.”

The first voice made a soft laugh. “Shouldn’t I be like a commodore or something…? Isn’t there a rule about one captain per ship?”

The other voice laughed. “You want a raise? I’ll see what I can do, but… The paperwork might be a bit convoluted. After all, we are on a pirated naval vessel, and you are not navy.” Something that sounded like a strangled cry came and the second voice laughed. “Thought not…”

The first voice made a long sigh. “Of all the crazy convoluted schemes. This is too complex to hold up to scrutiny. Sooner or later it will get out.”

The second voice sighed as well. “Of course it will. But… She was right. This ship is way too dangerous to be left sitting anywhere. Both the symbol and the technology. As that Sith attack proved. Speaking of that, any luck with the prisoners?”

Now the first voice held an edge of savagery. “Well, we don’t go for their methods, so it’s likely to take longer, but we may have caught a break. One of the three was a tech. He’s a mess, apparently he caught a piece of debris across the back of his suit and broke a bunch of his ribs, so he’s pretty well doped up. So he is talking. But it makes no sense.”

The second voice sounded curious now. “How so?”

The first voice sighed. “He was raving about bugs.”

The first voice sounded perplexed. “Verpine?”

The second voice sighed. “I don’t know, but… From what I gather. No…” The first voice broke off and the second spoke again.

“Well... Keep me posted.“

The first voice spoke crisply. “Yes sir.”

Now the second voice was tart. “Don’t call me sir, I work for a living.”

“Ok, corporal, or should I call you…”

The second voice changed, becoming flat, more mechanical. “Don’t say it. Not here. Not now. Not ever. The fewer people who know that the better. If I had been given any chance at all I would have told her Supreme Chancellorship what to do with her ‘offer’.”

“Right, Boss, sorry…”
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07.01.2012 , 05:25 AM | #7
<The next day>

Makarian stood at his post was wondered. Of all the places they could be going… Why Taris? He was… ambivalent. Part of him wanted to see, wanted to see the place his child had died. Part of him was screaming to go anywhere else. He felt a presence at his shoulder and turned to see Boss standing there. Boss jerked a thumb and Makarian sighed. He nodded to the com officer, the only other officer on the bridge and the Gand nodded. The com officer stepped from his board to the middle of the bridge. Makarian had to smile. The Stormhawk was a bit less regimented than the Navy, they pretty much had to be, but a lot of what they did was simple sense. Someone had to be in charge, but they didn’t need all the rigmarole of ‘I relieve you, I stand relieved’. Makarian followed Boss into a small office and shut the door. Then he blinked as Boss activated the privacy filters.

“What’s up?” He asked quietly.

Boss sat and sighed. “I am trying to not get your hopes up.” Makarian stared at him. “This is a long shot at best, but… The Sith do take prisoners on occasion.” Makarian felt as if he had been punched in the gut.

Then he shook his head. “Boss… No… I can’t put the ship in danger. Not for something personal.”

Boss just looked at him. “And we are not going to be in danger? I mean by now we have the entire Republic Fleet after us, as well as the Sith. Mak, it isn’t just about you. Someone set the Victorious up, we want them. We want them bad.” Makarian sighed. No one else ever called him Mak, just Mace. It went back to when they were in the Academy together. But Boss was speaking again. “The Sith invariably get sloppy after major operations. It’s endemic to the way they work. It is entirely possible that there were survivors. If so…”

Makarian blinked but then shook his head. “We haven’t got the people for this. We have thirty personnel. Some of whom are still on the sick list…” He broke off as Boss shook his head.

The ship commander's voice was sad now. “I couldn’t tell you. Enter.” Makarain blinked and the stiffened as the door opened and Lieutenant Deering came in. But she was in a very different uniform. He stared at her, she was wearing the uniform armor of the Republic Special Forces!

Boss spoke formally. “Admiral Makarian, meet Captain Nara Deering, Sixth Special Forces Battalion. She and her ‘people’ were the ones we ‘grabbed’…” Boss made quotes in the air with his fingers. “…when we boarded the Triumphant.”

Makarian shook his head slowly. “Wait a sec… If the naval personnel on Triumphant were actually Special Forces, why would they let us take the ship?” A Special Forces team could have wadded the Stormhawk’s boarding teams up and thrown them away like garbage. Captain Deering looked at Boss, who nodded.

The captain braced to attention and spoke precisely. “We were under orders to let you do what you needed to. The loss of a Hammerhead cruiser was deemed ‘necessary’ by my superiors.” Makarian stared at her. “I am sorry Sir, you didn’t have need to know.”

He stared at her, and then nodded. But he still looked puzzled. “If… If you know who she is…” he nodded to Boss. “I am assuming this is part of some kind of plan?”

Boss nodded. “Welcome to the ‘special’ Special Forces. Admiral Makarian. I almost told her to shove her ‘offer’. Man I wish I had… My people deserve better…”

Makarian looked at the armored figure. “I don’t understand.”

Boss sighed. “I was approached shortly after the ship docked in the shipyard by Captain Deering. I still haven’t figured out how she knew… ” Captain Deering had a blank look on her face. Makarian just looked more confused. “Although I am willing to bet that JAG had something to do with it. I told her to shove her offer. So I was visited later by someone else.”

Makarian shook his head. “Figured what out?” In response, Boss reached for his helmet and pulled it off. Makarian froze. “No….” His voice was horrified.

“I am sorry Admiral Makarian.” Hala Shinn said as she put the helmet on the desk. “It was needed.”

The Admiral shook his head. “Mace is…”

Hala nodded. “He has been dead almost seven years now. Some of us… Well, his legacy lives on. You can’t kill a symbol. You can’t torture an idea to death. You can’t shoot hope, and long as there are people who are willing to fight for it, you can’t murder freedom. And as long as this ship survives, the symbol is there.” Makarian shook his head slowly, stunned by the sheer simplicity of what she had said. And the magnitude.

His voice was hushed, disbelieving. “And you… just… put on the armor and become him… Become Boss…”

Hala shook her head. “It’s not quite that simple. But… essentially, yes.”

Makarian shook his head. “That is… Insane.”

Hala snorted. “Yep. And who would ever believe it? Why keep one old set of armor moving? Why keep the illusion of an immortal pirate? Because he is a symbol. But I really wish I had told her to shove it…”

Makarian stared at the Captain. “When did the captain find out about this?”

Hala sighed. When she spoke again, it was rueful. “It wasn’t her, it was her boss.”

Makarian fixed the captain with a look and Captain Deering nodded. “Ever since that mess on Alderaan, the Sixth Battalion has been under a cloud.” Makarian nodded. Having the commanding general accused of terrorism would do that. “We were reassigned.”

Hala snorted. “I’ll say…” Captain Deering just looked blank again and Hala snorted again. “She wasn’t the one who recruited me, Admiral. I told her to get out of my face, after all, I wasn't Boss, right? But her superior was most insistent.”

Makarian blinked. “Then who...?”

Hala sighed. “You know we were all taken off the ship for examinations and treatment, right, until security concerns became paramount?” Makarian nodded. “Well, I had a visitor in my hospital room I never would have expected. Not in a million years…”
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07.01.2012 , 05:29 AM | #8
<1 Week after the Stormhawk’s arrival at Coruscant>

Hala lay in her bed and tired not to sigh. She was bored. Of course, the pain in her leg and shoulder were constant goads to her, but… she didn’t have anything to do. She stretched a bit and rubbed the flexicast on her leg again. Her doctor had been most unhappy with her. The leg had healed, but… wrong. The doc had been forced to rebreak it, to let it heal again. Hala was sure the reason Crota had done it without anesthesia was to punish her for her intransigence. She hadn’t given the Mon Cal sadist the joy of hearing her scream however. That time anyway…

Admittedly, the place she had picked to hide from the Marines searching the ship had not been comfortable at all. But she hadn’t been on the pardoned list, and she hadn’t been about to tell them why not. She shook her head and tried to read. One thing about military hospitals, there was never a shortage of things to read. Of course, most of them were manuals of some kind, but every so often she would get a magazine. She had half expected to find a stash of dirty ones somewhere in the room, but it had obviously been cleaned thoroughly before her arrival. She sighed again.

When commander Scarne had first proposed this, she and the whole crew had been ecstatic. The chance to go home, to see loved ones again, to… She hadn’t realized… Few of her crew had loved ones outside the Enclave any more. It just wasn’t safe for kin of the Stormhawk to be known as such. And after the first enclave had been attacked and destroyed by Sith commandos, well… It made sense to hide their kin somewhere very hard to find. And she didn’t have any. Her parents were dead, and Mace, well…

She shook her head. This was a good solution. Better than running from the Sith and the Republic, but… She hadn’t had any idea. The media vultures were circling even now. One had actually managed to get into Hala’s room and tried to interview her, before the guards had caught up. So now, she was in the security wing, along with the other members of her crew. She just hoped they were okay. She saw them every day of course… but… Her thoughts broke off as her door opened and a figure in uniform came through. Her face fell as she recognized it.

“What do you want?” Hala snarled. It was seriously insubordinate but the woman in uniform didn’t react. The Special Forces captain had approached Hala shortly after the ship had been moored and asked to speak with her. After hearing the captain out, Hala had turned her back on the captain and walked away. She had hoped it would be the end of it. Silly…

The Captain nodded to her and Hala froze as the door opened again and a cloaked figure stepped in. She would have sat up straight, but the figure spoke.

“Please don’t move too much on my account, Corporal Shinn.” Hala frowned, did she know that voice? “The doctors say you will make a full recovery, but it will take time.”

Hala looked at the shadowed face and shook her head slowly. “Whatever you are selling I want none of it.”

The figure laughed, a merry sound. “Oh my. Such forthrightness. Your file doesn’t do you credit.”

Hala snarled. “I don’t know you. Since you are here with her, I assume you are the mysterious ‘she’ that the captain was talking about as her boss. As I told her, I have no interest in doing your dirty work.”

The cloaked figure sighed. “Like it or not, Corporal, your presence here, and that of the Stormhawk, is a massive problem for the Republic.”

Hala bristled. “And you are going to let us off the hook, for some unspecified service? What can a corporal do that a captain can’t?” She asked sarcastically.

"You are right." She didn’t expect the figure to sigh. “Captains can’t do what is needed now. But… Stormhawk Boss can.”

Hala was in motion before the figure had finished speaking and her hand flew in a lightspeed draw. She couldn’t hide much from the medics, but what she could hide would be more than enough… She had her sight picture perfect on the cloaked figure’s head and was squeezing the trigger of her hold out blaster when the armored form of the captain interposed herself and the cloaked figure spoke sharply.

Stop!” The voice wasn’t loud, but it was sharp enough that Hala froze her finger a millimeter or so from firing. At this range the modified blaster could likely punch through the captain’s breastplate, but… The figure spoke softer. “We are not enemies. Captain, step aside.”

Deering didn’t take her eyes off of Hala, and her own service blaster was out now, trained center mass on Hala.

Deering spoke without moving. “I can’t do that Ma’am.”

The figure laid a gentle hand on the captain’s shoulder and spoke to Hala. “Please, Hala Shinn, at least listen to what I say. Then… If you wish… We will leave and this will never have happened.”

Hala just stared at the woman over the sights of her gun and the figure slumped. “I am going to move my hands and lower my hood. Please don’t shoot me.” Hala watched as the woman reached up slowly and then pulled her hood down. Hala’s explosive grunt was clearly audible as she recognized the face. “We need your help, Hala Shinn. More appropriately, we need Stormhawk Boss’ help.”

Hala stared at the woman who had become a news item after the no confidence vote that had removed her predecessor less than two weeks before and shivered just a bit. She slumped and the hold out blaster vanished back to wherever it had come from. When Hala spoke it was slightly more respectful.

“I guess the least I can do is hear you out, Supreme Chancellor…”
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07.01.2012 , 05:34 AM | #9
<Aboard the Stormhawk, en route to the Taris system>

"You..." Makarian stared at the figure behind the desk, his face a mask of disbelief. “You nearly shot the Supreme Chancellor?”

"Well..." Hala shrugged. “It’s not like she hasn’t done things worthy of being shot at…” Makarian barked a laugh, but then stopped when he realized that Hala was serious.

"Uh..." He shook his head. “Hala… She is the leader of the government. She is kind of important. You can’t just point blasters at… Wait a sec… how the flarg do you hide a blaster from the medical scans?”

Hala just smiled and Captain Deering spoke up. “I would love to know that too, as would the Protection Detail, but she refuses to tell us.”

Makarian looked at the Special Forces captain and sighed. “So… What? Why are we going to Taris?”

Hala grimaced. “You were right, Admiral. The media sold the Victorious and her task force out to the Sith. They ‘supposedly’ didn’t know when they broadcast their shows that the Sith were tapping into their transmission.” Makarian snorted derisively and Hala smiled viciously. “Yeah. That is what I say too. But…” Hala shook her head. “They didn’t get it quite right. The information they stole wasn’t accurate.” Makarian blinked.

Captain Deering spoke now .“We know our systems are not secure against Imperial Intelligence. So, what goes out has been incomplete. With the actual final orders going out in hard copy, hand delivered. I personally delivered the orders to Jorus Gal, the captain of the Victorious. Somehow the media people got hold of it. We were setting a sting in place to try and trap those media scumbags in a lie, maybe the Chancellor, the previous one or the current one, could wring a few concessions out of the Senate to curb these slimeballs. We didn’t expect this. Not in the slightest.”

"No, I can see you wouldn't." Makarian sighed. “So we are going to do… what?”

"Well..." Hala smiled evilly. “Let me ask you something admiral. What would the biggest news story of the week be at Coruscant right now?”

His eyes widened. And then he grinned, an evil grin that matched Hala's. “Oh, I don’t know. Maybe a pirate ship getting away after being in lockup. Lots of egg on the faces of the Forces now, and lots of chances for morons and their pet talking heads to start babbling.”

“And what would any self respecting vulture or paparazzi do if he, she, or it found out where that ship was going?” Hala asked softly. Makarian stared at her and she smiled wider. A shark might have gotten goosebumps. “As far as the Forces know we are either dead or vanished. But… Someone left an anonymous tip in several dropboxes shortly after the ship left.”

Makarian shook his head. “If they did sell out the Victorious, why would they… oh…”

"Yeah." Hala nodded. “I fully expect to find a Sith battle fleet waiting for us when we drop from hyperspace.”

"Um..." Makarian blinked. “Hala, there is now way we can fight a fleet with thirty people aboard. Even with Captain Deering's people and all the droid support you have...”

"Yep." Hala nodded again, and this time her grin was vicious. “Which is why we are going to stop off and pick up some friends first. We need to capture the flagship. We need to find out where they got their information. And maybe, just maybe we can find out if they took prisoners from the Victorious as well.”

"Won't work." Makarian shook his head. “Hala, I know this ship is powerful, but… Thirty people, even with a Special Forces team attached, wouldn’t be able to take a fleet.”

"Admiral." Hala grinned wider. “Trust me.”

"Uh..." Makarian surprised himself with a laugh. “Hell no…”

All three laughed at his dry tone. Then Hala spun her display around so the Admiral could see it and he whistled softly. Then he smiled. It was not a nice smile. Hala smiled as well and waved him to a chair. They had a lot of planning to do and not a lot of time
My stories in order:
Love, the Force, and Everything Discussion thread here

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07.01.2012 , 05:36 AM | #10
<Taris system, a day later>

“Hyperspace reversion, battlecruiser class.” The captain of the ship smiled thinly as he looked at the readings. The Unleashed was not the largest or most modern of Sith battleships, but it was powerful. And the fleet of escorts surrounding it were no less powerful. As more than one Republic force had found out. The captain smiled as he saw the readouts. It was the Stormhawk.

“It’s about time.” The captain nodded to his bridge crew. “Activate interdictor field, and all guns, FIRE! They won’t get away this time.” The ship rocked as fire started towards the enemy vessel and the captain smiled as hits appeared on the ship’s shield. But then alarms started sounding. “What the…”

Instead of twenty ships in his formation, now there were thirty! New contacts blossomed on the screen as more ships appeared from hyperspace. And not just ANY ships. Mandalorians. A dreadnought, two battleships, and seven smaller vessels. Ten ships decelerating from hyperspace at an insanely close range to the Sith fleet. Too close actually. One of the small ones collided with a Sith cruiser and both ships vanished in a titanic fireball. But that wasn’t what froze the captain in his tracks. It was the Manadalorian assault carrier that was crossing his own ship’s bow and … dropping small figures. He froze for a moment, and then started barking orders.

“Prepare to repel boarders!” He shouted, but by then it was far, far too late.

<The Stormhawk>

Jaing Makarian smiled as the Sith fleet came apart. He turned to Boss. “Are we going to help?”

boss shook his armored head. “Nope. We would just get in the way. And they were a bit miffed about losing out on the chance to kill more at the Centurion. So… Let them do what they do best.” Boss nodded to another armored figure and Makarian tried not to stiffen.

But the woman just laughed. “Yes, my vode were a bit unhappy. But this should make them less so. A good fight always gets the blood moving early in the morning. ” She touched her helmet and nodded. “The teams on the battleship report taking engineering and the bridge. They are advancing on the flag bridge now. Resistance is stiffening.” The woman sounded pleased and Makarian stared at her. Trava Kalan just snorted.

“There is nothing my clan enjoys more than beating the snot out of a bunch of Imperial scum.” She paused, and then shook her head. “Maybe a good meal. Maybe…” A strangled laugh came from behind them and Makarian turned to where Captain Deering was standing.

Makarian made a face. “Sorry we couldn’t use your people in this…”

But the Captain shook her head. “For this kind of craziness? Let crazy people do it.” Her tone was cool, but then again, she had lost a battle to Mandalorians, the Republic had lost an entire planet named Forge despite a desperate battle in the recent past. "Let them use their insanity on other people."

Jaing tensed, but from offended, Trava laughed. “I like you captain. But you are right. We are crazy. By your standards, every one of us is certifiably insane. And a good thing!” She raised a fist as another Sith ship, a cruiser, exploded on the screen.

“A good thing for some.” Boss said quietly as the Sith formation fell completely apart. Ships were fleeing in every direction. But swarms of fighters with Besu’liik war droids mixed in were after them in moments. None would escape. “Now maybe we can get some answers…”

<An hour later>

“I protest this, this piracy…” The man speaking fell back as an armored forearm across the chest dropped him to the deck. Boss stood impassive as the man was hauled back to his feet by a figure in Mandalorian armor. The man was still sputtering. “You can’t do this… I have rights…” Now it was a fist and the being hit the deck again, but before he could get up a large armor clad boot thudded into his ribs. Boss just watched. After a few minutes, the man cried out. “Stop, stop. I was a prisoner…” The room seemed to grow infinitely colder as Boss spoke.

“A prisoner. I see. No chains, no stun cuffs, no guards. We found you sitting in a private cabin sipping rare wine. Some prisoner.” Boss nodded to the Mandalorian who hauled the man to his feet again. “Hextor Jom, Coruscant Daily News. We are going to ask you some questions. If we don’t like the answers, you are going out the airlock. Clear?” The reporter nodded quickly. “When did you start feeding information to the Sith?” The man shook his head.

“I didn’t. I haven’t. I swear…” His raving cut off as Boss sighed.

“I know you sold out the Republic. And not for ideals, or even money. But for ratings.” The cold tone had the man whimpering. “How many Republic soldiers have paid for your ratings? How many?” Now Boss was shouting. “How many?” The man was positively cringing now, but Boss just shook his head. He turned and walked to the door.

Jom babbled. “I… I can pay… I can…”

But his babbling cut off abruptly as Boss turned back. “Oh you will pay. Trust me, you will pay…” The man babbled again, but Boss was gone. The Mandalorian dropped the reporter in a heap and then, without another word, started applying the boot again.


Makarian watched with something akin to satisfaction as the reporter was manhanded. He smiled at Boss. “I wish you had let me do it.”

Boss shook his head. When he spoke, it was hard and practical. “You would overreact. You would kill him and I understand completely. We need him alive, if not whole. We did get some information though. Idiot never thought his files would be scanned, so he never bothered to even encrypt them.” Makarian blinked and Boss sighed. “It is entirely possible that this is another trap, but… One of the Sith made a comment about prisoners being sent to an out of the way world as slave labor.” Makarian’s eyes went wide, but Boss raised a hand. “From the records we have managed to decipher, it’s a backwater world called Dzass. We have no information on it.”

Makarian thought about that and then nodded. “Then we need to get some.” Boss nodded.
My stories in order:
Love, the Force, and Everything Discussion thread here