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No death, only Wrath: The Helicarrier Chronicles

STAR WARS: The Old Republic > English > Community Content > Fan Fiction
No death, only Wrath: The Helicarrier Chronicles

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bright_ephemera
07.02.2012 , 11:22 PM | #1
The continuing adventures of Nalenne, DS Sith Warrior, comic book fan, and all-around train wreck of a human (Er, Sith-an) being. Her original story was told here; now, in the interests of keeping a manageable index, I'll throw any additional stories into this thread.

Assume Sith Warrior spoilers throughout. Spoilers for other class lines will be marked appropriately.

Chronicles will be placed in two timelines: CHRONICLES PAST, in which Malavai Quinn is dead but his ghostly presence persists on the S.A.B.E.R. Helicarrier (Nalenne's Fury-class ship); and CHRONICLES PRESENT, in which Quinn is back from the dead and re-involved with Nalenne. (Husband/wife terminology notwithstanding, they have certain reservations about formally remarrying.)

Index, CHRONICLES PRESENT:

Spoiler


Index, CHRONICLES PAST:
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bright_ephemera
07.02.2012 , 11:24 PM | #2
CHRONICLES PRESENT, 1: In which Nalenne defends Quinn's job

Time period: In the first few weeks after Quinn's return to life


Nalenne strode down the main thoroughfare of Kaas City in what she hoped was an imposing and Wrathful way, rather than just a frantic power walk. Quinn kept pace, and he looked pretty good doing it, so Nalenne figured she was probably fine.

Note to self. Get Kaas city ordinances amended to allow speeders. Kaas City was a network of skyscraper islands separated by gaping chasms that fell hundreds of meters into mist and jungle. This was a very exciting city layout, but after several high-profile accidents, they had banned ground vehicles entirely. It was a betrayal of the very "survival of the fittest" principles the Empire stood for, but try telling that to the Committee on Public Safety (a standing insult to the Sith if there ever was one). At least the offices Nalenne was hurrying for weren't in the Citadel proper. They were in the first island of Kaas City's great high rises, so a fast walk would get her there.

She just had to beat her sister Niselle.

General Daman kept austere offices in the military headquarters of Dromund Kaas. Technically the armed services had some space in the great Citadel, but the general was notorious for his dislike of ostentation, so here he stayed, a harsh grey man in a harsh grey building issuing harsh grey commands to a harsh grey people. He was, to no one's surprise, a personal hero of Quinn's.

Nalenne didn't bother with the receptionist, and the guards had the sense to get out of her way. Her angry face was good for something after all. And perhaps Quinn's crisp uniform and air of dutiful determination placated the functionaries who might otherwise make a suicidal stand against a Sith.

She kicked General Daman's office door open and found the elderly soldier sitting at his desk, angled to face three officers lined up against the right-hand wall. Irrelevant. "General," she said. "I trust you've kept our last holocall in mind."

"My lord Wrath," he said through his harsh grey beard as he stared at her with harsh grey eyes. "Of course I respect your command, but you understand I am in a most difficult position." He bowed in place, then cocked an eyebrow at Quinn. "Captain."

Quinn saluted. "General." Nalenne got the impression that this was what qualified as warmth between these two.

"Darth Niselle has contacted me more than once demanding that the captain be stripped of his rank and dishonorably discharged," Daman told Nalenne.

"I'm aware of this. You will ignore her."

"When the Emperor's word is split like this..."

"Don't let's pretend the Emperor comes into this, yes?"

Only an eye trained by dealing with Quinn would have detected the subtle relief in the general's stance. "Yes, my lord."

"But he does," drawled an overly familiar voice. Niselle straightened from where she had been lurking against the far left wall. "Dear sister, how could you ask this poor man to defy the Emperor's will?"

"Show me someone who knows the Emperor's will and I'll show you a drooling cretin who could use a good slap in the face. Hi, Nis."

"Hello, Lenny. I feel it's in everyone's best interest for your captain to step down."

"My crew put you up to this, didn't they."

"What, I can't sabotage your husband's career on my own? Quinn's going down."

"Too late, hon. I got him back in the service and you won't knock him out again."

"Tsk, tsk. Let's respect the chain of command on this, shall we?"

"Rank-wise I am every bit your equal."

"I was more referring to the general." Niselle turned to Daman. "You'll find I'm a much more rewarding mistress than this one. Obey me. Simply discharge Quinn."

"Ignore her," said Nalenne. "Let the man who has served well, and been the first man in the history of the Imperial military to volunteer for active duty while dead, continue his career."

"The service through death was most impressive," admitted the general. Quinn glowed a tiny bit.

"Having the sense to do what I want is most impressive, too," said Niselle. "Honestly." She reached out and blasted lightning across the room, raising an acrid smell and rapidly killing the first of the officers standing by the wall. "Does that alter your decision at all?"

"I will not be bullied," said the general. "But if this is the Dark Council's decision...."

"Oh, it is," purred Niselle.

"Is not," said Nalenne. "You, general, you would listen to your own men, right?"

"I trust their judgment."

Nalenne turned to the second of the lesser officers. "You think Quinn should stay. Right?"

"I-I don't even know him, my lord."

"I can vouch for him."

"I won't," volunteered Niselle.

"Shut up."

"I - I - " said the officer.

Not helping. "Too late." Nalenne drew her saber and cut the useless man down. "Have you reached a decision yet, general?"

"I cannot just discharge an officer without evidence," he said. This was a bald-faced lie, but then, there was no safe thing for him to say here.

"The evidence is that as long as Quinn is in your service with a mostly flattering record, I'll be killing your people." Niselle zapped the last of the lesser officers. She drew this death out in a theatrical spray of lightning. "Do as I command."

"I think the first two established he won't be swayed that way, you dolt." Nalenne put her saber away, raised a hand, and started Force choking the general. "You. Let me know when you start seeing things my way."

"My lord, please," said Quinn.

"I am trying to make a point here, captain," said Nalenne, but she released the general.

Daman coughed hard, and then made an effort to sit up straight. "My lords, this behavior is - "

"If your next three words aren't 'Yes, Darth Niselle,' you will die," warned Niselle.

"Knock it off," said Nalenne.

"My lord, please," repeated Quinn, this time to Niselle.

"You're all insane," growled Daman.

"None of those words were correct!" screeched Niselle, and blasted the general before Nalenne could get an interrupting Force push into motion. "Nobody here is any use at all! I need to find somebody who's willing to fire your pet, Lenny. Who's the ranking officer left alive around here?"

Nalenne grinned. "Thanks to your efforts, dear, that would be Captain Quinn."
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kabeone
07.03.2012 , 12:18 AM | #3
I cheered when I saw this thread. Like a yay sound and clapping and everything.

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Adwynyth
07.03.2012 , 02:41 PM | #4
Quote: Originally Posted by kabeone View Post
I cheered when I saw this thread. Like a yay sound and clapping and everything.

^ This...in spades.

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Magdalane
07.03.2012 , 04:06 PM | #5
Started dancing in the computer room, made the dogs bark at me
Love is the strongest magic of them all.

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bright_ephemera
07.03.2012 , 06:52 PM | #6
CHRONICLES PRESENT, 2: In which Quinn reestablishes the corporeal dynamic

Time period: In the first few weeks after Quinn's return to life


Nalenne and Quinn sat side by side on the bed, continuing the long tentative experiment of trying to interact without anybody stabbing anybody.

"I was relieved, my lord, when you turned your efforts toward restoring rather than destroying me. For more than the obvious reason. Either course of action could be considered justifiable under the circumstances, but I doubt your campaigns would go so well without me there to plan them."

"I would be of very little use to anyone without you, captain. I fed on my frustration over you for ages before I was forced to move to working with my terror of losing you...and my anger at keeping you. On such passions is the whole Sith Empire built." She paused a moment just to admire him. "How does it feel to be such a valuable member of society?"

Quinn raised his eyebrows in a brief signal of something approaching resignation. "It feels much like it always has, my lord, except with even less of a sense of control when you say it like that."

"Control? Just think how much worse things would be if I had some other addiction, one that wasn't asking me to be constructive from time to time. By any sane standard, you're one of the most important men in the Empire."

He pulled her into a tight hug. "Fortunate for us all that I found you, then."

"I wouldn't have anyone else."

A pause. "Not even Jaesa?"

She laughed into his neck. "Not even Jaesa."

He backed off enough to nudge her chin up until she could meet his eyes. "Strange of you, my lord, to have been so wildly insistent on pursuing the one person who is entirely willing to 'ruin your fun,' as you describe being kept in check."

"'Wildly insistent'? Me? I waited patiently for you!"

"As I recall, you withheld your approval on my last promotion until I agreed to kiss you."

"And then I waited patiently for you to comply. I was very nice about it."

"By your standards, yes. But you may as well have made it an order."

"What would've been the sport in that?"

Quinn regarded her with a look flickering between stern reproach and amusement. "You're fortunate I am better behaved than you are, my lord."

"You don't behave at all. For one thing, you still keep springing dramatic traps without telling me."

"You could stop me doing that if you really wanted to."

"I don't think that's true. Nothing stops you once you've made up your mind. It's one of the things I love about you, in a 'why the hell does obeying my orders always come out to you doing what you want' way."

"Doing what I want?" All at once he pushed her down onto the bed, pinning her arms but holding himself well clear in a maneuver that was only unusual in that this time neither one of them was really mad yet. "You do tend to be fond of those who survive any demonstration of being as willful as you are."

She looked up at him and made a face. "All one of them. And you didn't survive, technically."

"No, but you were terribly eager to get me back."

"I was planning on using you for my own dark purposes. Fondness hardly entered into it. Now come down here and kiss me."

"I have not yet decided whether that's advisable at the present time, my lord."

Using her Force-augmented strength to break his grip would be against the long-established rules. Plain muscle alone was only good for a defiant yet ineffectual wriggle. "Are you really starting this again? You are a hateful hateful man."

"You've mentioned that passionate hatred is the very basis of the Empire's strength. In encouraging that I am simply doing my patriotic duty."

"I got your 'patriotic duty' right here. "

"I’m fully aware,” he said softly, "but I wasn't going to rush it."

She glared up at him. "Blasted tease. I'll kill you."

"You've done that before." He lowered his head, ever so slightly, just enough to be beyond her reach when she surged up against his weight. He smiled a small sly smile. "I thought you wanted more novelty than that."

"Oh, and you're helping me with that, are you? You frustrating the hell out of me is the opposite of novelty! It's one of the fundamental constants of the universe!"

"And yet it remains enjoyable."

"Do you have any idea how long I've waited for you already?"

"I counted every minute. Since long before you knew. Approaching one point four million, if you're wondering. What's another five, or ten, or thirty, or three hundred…"

"You bastard." She kept straining. "I’m leaving you."

He kept out of reach. "Oh?"

"Yes." She gave up and fell back. Rrrrgh. "Any second now I am definitely leaving."

"Then you'll miss the interesting part, my lord."

"**** you."

"Not yet."

"I should've left you dead."

"You'll change your mind about that soon enough."

She studied his maddeningly handsome face while his infuriating smugness burned against her every nerve. "If you were right, which you're not, I would hate you for it."

He shrugged as best he could while holding her in place. "I could stop."

"Don't you dare."
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bright_ephemera
07.03.2012 , 06:53 PM | #7
CHRONICLES PRESENT, 3: In which Pierce and Broonmark get ideas

Time period: In the first few weeks after Quinn's return to life


Pierce leaned against the mess cabinets and gave Broonmark a tired look. "Shoot me," he said.

"Ggglob?" Broonmark drew his vibroblade and activated it, then presented it for Pierce's examination. "Glorble?"

"Can't shoot?" Pierce handed his blaster rifle to the Talz. "Here."

Broonmark considered the rifle, then Pierce. "Bbbluggr?"

Pierce jerked his head in the direction of Nalenne's quarters. "I'm going to die of boredom before she's done shagging that weasel." He held up a hand to forestall Broonmark's reply. "I know, we've been getting odd jobs, but it's nothing like a Wrath rampage."

"Good morning, guys," said Jaesa, entering and going straight for the cereal cabinet.

"Why are you so cheerful," said Pierce flatly.

"Because everything is finally okay around here and Nalenne is happy again?"

"Are you out of your mind?" inquired Pierce. "We're practically out of a job, all because he's making up for lost hours."

Jaesa blushed prettily. "I think it's a lot nicer around here now. It's like it was when things first got sorted out."

Pierce rubbed the bridge of his nose. "Sure, only louder."

"She did offer extended shore leave for us during the...you know, settling-in period."

"And let him completely reduce her brain to goo while we're not around to keep him in his place? Not likely. We need her working and we need her dealing with real human beings – or Talz – or else the captain'll be calling all the shots when next we step on board."

"Quinn counts as a real human being," said Jaesa.

"And that's where you're wrong again." Pierce shook his head. "We need something for her to do. Something really violent."

"Bggglg."

"And here I was hoping we could resolve this with a beach vacation," sighed Vette from the doorway.

"Vette, the only thing worse than the prospect of the two of 'em in there is the prospect of the two of 'em out in public. I'd rather she got to thinking about something slightly better suited to her."

"I really don't think any of this worrying is necessary," said Jaesa.

"But you're always wrong," said Vette.

"Haven't you seen how happy she is?"

Pierce growled. "Don't know about seeing, but I've been hearing it 24/7."

"Just give them time."

"It's been two weeks. I want my Wrath back," said Pierce.

"Why, Pierce," teased Vette, "I didn't know you cared."

He ran a finger over the detonator case at his hip and managed to grin. "Woman who makes trouble like this one? Was there ever a day I didn't?"

Broonmark had stepped out to fiddle with something. "Glorp," he announced when he was done, and beckoned them all out to see the big holo room screen.

A newscast was on, a broad scene of a chaotic, packed street bracketed by burning buildings. The newscaster was flanked by uniformed Imperial troopers with blaster rifles at the ready. "The rioting is getting worse as agitators take to the streets, demanding that Lorrd end its centuries-long neutrality by joining with the Republic. The Imperial embassy has been stormed and so far we have no reports of survivors..."

Pierce's face split in a wide smile as he watched. "Perfect."

"Blorkikop," agreed Broonmark.

Pierce turned toward the crew quarters corridor. "Now, we just...I'm not going to knock right now."

Jaesa's eyes went wide. "I sure won't."

Broonmark crossed his arms. "Blop."

"Nuh-uh," said Vette.

"Why don't I just fly us there," said Pierce, "and somebody intercept them when they come up for air." He rubbed the bridge of his nose again. "Whatever happened to Captain Work Work Work?"

"Seems to me he's worki-"

"Vette, do not finish that sentence."
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iamthehoyden
07.03.2012 , 08:17 PM | #8
Oh yay!! More stories!! Happy dance happy dance!!
aren't you a little short for a stormtrooper?
---------------
Fan Fiction: My Name is Solomon Crae The Man in the Box

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bright_ephemera
07.05.2012 , 06:45 PM | #9
CHRONICLES PRESENT, 4: In which Andronikos and Nalenne seek to relieve boredom

Time period: Settled in after Quinn's return to life


Nalenne set down the latest Starslammers guest spot – the recurring-villain pirate crew was, in her opinion, the only good thing about the X-folk series – and answered the holo to find Andronikos Revel. Her brother-in-law waved a vague kind of greeting-salute thing. “Hiya.”

“Hey there. What news from Korriban?”

“Let’s see. Dust, dust, holocrons, dirt, and dust. How’re you?”

“Busy. Having fun. Pierce says hi.”

Andronikos grinned. “And I bet Jaesa’s dying a little inside right now, without knowing why.”

“Yeah, talking to you is bad for me.” Nalenne made a face. “All that ‘killing’ and ‘revenge-for-fun’ and stuff. You’re a wicked wicked man.”

“That’s why you girls like me. Listen, I was wondering if I might drop by for a bit, maybe get in on your next op.”

“Bored, are we?”

“Dust storms are the most action this planet ever gets.”

“I’d love to have you. Gotta check the taskmaster’s schedule, but I can probably drop by tomorrow morning?”

“Make it afternoon. I sleep late.”

*

Pierce kept a wary eye on the scenery below while Quinn took them down to the Korriban landing pad. “Nobody with rocket launchers yet,” he reported, sounding disappointed.

“When Nis takes me out, it’ll be with lightning.”

“Yeah,” said Pierce, “but you have other interesting enemies.” He wandered back to his quarters.

Andronikos showed up right on time – he was good about that – and Nalenne welcomed him into the holo room. “I have to ask,” she said, “are you here to kill me by yourself? Because that’s dumb even by Nis’s standards.”

The pirate shook his head. “Nah. I’m just that bored, and you were lucky enough to be the first person to answer my calls.”

“I’ve got some counteroffensive stuff on Corellia lined up. Could be good. Nis really has nothing for you?”

He shrugged and strolled past her to the reading nook, settling comfortably on her couch with his feet on the coffee table. Quinn, from where he stood observing, gave him a dirty look, which Andronikos disregarded. “She’s in with her ancient tablets again, you know? Tied up with Talos seeking some kind of ultimate power. Has been for days. She’ll call me when she’s ready for the blasters to come out. It’s all right.”

"Lucky for you, I always have time for blasters."

"That's why I keep you on speed dial."

*

The Corellian op, to everyone’s displeasure, was a bust. The military had gotten their act together long enough to take the immediate objective, and the Republic was playing it cautious, leaving nothing very interesting to storm. Nalenne heard the report and retreated to the reading nook to flop over and sulk.

Quinn followed her. “The strike team did very well,” he said.

“Quiet, you,” said Nalenne.

Andronikos sauntered out of the engine room. “Nalenne, your ship looks like an Imperial textbook had its way with it.”

Quinn scowled. “That’s rather the point.”

“Sure, if you want to perform like a textbook in the field. Dunno if you noticed, but they’re not the most exciting rides in the world.”

“Excitement isn’t the – “

Nalenne interrupted. “Quinn, remember who you’re working for. Andronikos, you going somewhere with this?”

“Yeah. Been having some fun with my own ship while Nis is busy.”

“Have you told her it’s your ship, not hers?”

He grinned. “She knows. If I wanted out, she couldn’t catch me.”

“You casing mine, too?”

“Would I do that to my sister?”

“Yes.”

Andronikos’ smile widened. “I was just looking around. Yours could use a few engine tweaks, maybe.”

“You won’t touch this vessel,” said Quinn.

“What’d you have in mind?” said Nalenne.

“First, a name change. ‘S.A.B.E.R. Helicarrier’ is the stupidest name ever, especially for a rig that is neither a helicopter nor a carrier.”

“Unacceptable. Any other bright ideas?”

He shifted his feet, dragging them across the coffee table to a more comfortable position, eyeing Quinn to make sure the officer appreciated his unsanitary efforts. “Found some interesting alloys on the black market. Line the reaction chamber for the hyperdrive. Actually act as slow catalysts for the fuel. Gets you some really nice results.”

“When it doesn’t rupture the casing the moment the reaction starts,” sniffed Quinn. “I’ve heard about this…experiment.”

“Hardly ever happens,” said Andronikos. “Not if you get the composition right, and I know some guys who never get it wrong.”

“My lord…”

Wet blanket. “Go be useful someplace else,” she told Quinn, and waved dismissal. He saluted stiffly and radiated annoyance as he stalked away.

“This stuff’ll give your ship a real kick. Decent sublight results, too. I think you’ll like it.” Andronikos laced his hands behind his head. “How’s the new life, anyway?”

“It’s great. It’s perfect. Some days I want to choke him to death again.”

“What’s stopping you?”

Nalenne wrinkled her nose. “The part where I’m still stupidly in love with him.”

“'Stupid' is right.” Andronikos scratched his ear and grinned. “Come on, I should take you to meet my supplier. He doesn’t know he’s my supplier yet, and he’s kinda heavily guarded, but I bet we can get the materials for your engine mods before anybody else cracks him.”

“I didn’t say you were touching my engines!”

“Wait ‘til you feel the results before you judge.”

“Hmph. That’s what they all say.”

He stopped mid-standing-up and fixed her with a stern look. “No, they don’t.”

Well, they would if anybody dared to be suggestive around the Wrath. “Why are you always calling me on this stuff?”

“Because I don’t trust your captain to do it. Come on.”
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bright_ephemera
07.05.2012 , 09:22 PM | #10
CHRONICLES PRESENT, 5: In which Nalenne and Quinn strategize

Time period: Settled in after Quinn's return to life


Quinn slipped into the mess while Nalenne was eating alone. She smiled in greeting. “You’ve got that look,” she said. “Job?”

“Yes. A Republic frigate fielding a prototype cannon will be testing in an uncharted sector not too far rimward from here. It’s a prime opportunity.”

“What’s the plan?” She leaned forward to listen. His mission briefings were the longest speeches he gave that didn’t involve yelling at her, and that made them really enjoyable.

“You and the goons can storm directly from the hangar to the command deck. I expect a strong guard response. The commander himself is a cautious man and will likely sequester himself away from the bridge, but there are only two or three suitable locations on the ship for him to work from, and once you have cleared the bulk of the guards and secured the controls you can come around for him. In the mean time I shall infiltrate the engineering deck and disable the hyperdrive and the power conduits to their experimental cannon.”

Her stomach flopped. “Alone?”

“I know the way and I can move quickly. Their attention will be on you, and you will need the full strength of the rest of the crew to deal with their automated defenses on the command level. It’s our best option.”

“You’ve got flesh again. It only takes one blaster shot to seriously inconvenience you now.”

“I’ve taken harder assignments, my lord.”

Nalenne stood up and moved to face him. “But you won’t have me. You’re going to get hurt.”

“I do have some experience in not tripping over my own feet, my lord.”

“If something were to happen to you…”

“Then your rage would propel you to cover the mission for me. If anything, it would help our cause.”

“That is exactly the worst possible reasoning. Malavai, I can’t lose you again.”

“I would hardly be lost. Even if I were fatally shot, it appears my spirit is stuck with you until you die.”

“That’s not what I meant.” She laid a finger at the joining of his collar and traced a line down his warm and pleasingly solid chest. “I can’t lose you again.”

Quinn sighed his trying-to-keep-his-patience sigh. “Nalenne, I’m flattered, but if it’s a choice between accomplishing Imperial strategic objectives and remaining physically available to you…”

Well, fine then. “If you die again I’ll quit working for the Empire.”

“No, you won’t. You enjoy it too much.”

“I’ll go rogue, start helping the Republic. Just to spite you.”

“That is a staggering level of spite.”

“I’ll manage it if you throw yourself away. Don’t take any unnecessary risks, Malavai. In fact, don’t take risks at all. Stick with me.”

Quinn slipped his arms around her waist. “It’s just another mission. We’re more than capable of accomplishing it. I trust you to do your part. Trust me to do mine, as I always have, and as I always will.”

“You’ve been known to choose some awfully fatal assignm-“

He interrupted her with a kiss, that gentle kiss that simply begged her to push up hard against him, suddenly fearing again that it would be her last chance. Because, you know, sometimes people who weren’t her tried to kill him, too. Most of them weren't as good at it as she was, but somebody might surprise her someday.

Quinn shoved her away a little while later. Familiar move. New thought. “You calculate that timing to balance sapping my resistance with maintaining my ability to see straight for combat,” she said accusingly.

“I do.”

“Could you pretend to be ashamed of this?”

“No.” He straightened his collar. “You should prepare for the mission, my lord. I’ll meet you at the airlock shortly.” He headed to the bridge.

*

Vette approached Quinn while he was guiding the Helicarrier out of hyperspace. She leaned against the wall and crossed her arms in a casual way. “Nice briefing I heard there. You planning on timing an entrance into the commander’s holdout to announce to both Nalenne and the ‘Pubs that you wrecked both the weapon and the escape route?”

Quinn gritted his teeth. “Perhaps.”

“You are so predictable, you know that? I can't believe she still falls for it. Anyway, the ship should be well defended every step of the way. You picked an interesting solo run to make.”

“Solo is greatly preferable. It would hardly do to have the likes of you at my side when I make my entrance.”

“Right, gotta make it a one-man show. I would spoil the surprise for Nalenne myself, but the only person who stands to lose in your secret-commando plan is you, so, carry on.”
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Ceterum autem censeo, Malavai esse delendam.