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(L,F&E Interlude) Progress through Pain

STAR WARS: The Old Republic > English > Community Content > Fan Fiction
(L,F&E Interlude) Progress through Pain

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kalenath
07.05.2012 , 12:09 PM | #1
((A warning. Imperial Intelligence is not composed of nice people. What they do may serve the Empire, and is often very subtle, but it is NOT nice, clean or pretty. You are warned.))

Kunda Gev woke suddenly, conscious of pain. The female Twi’lek was hurting him again. He had passed out after she had started on his hands with that little knife of hers. His eyes flew open again and again he tried to curse through the wad of whatever was in his mouth, but all that came out was an inarticulate grunt. He tried to struggle, but the bonds that held him were too strong and designed to hold desperate prisoners. He recognized the design; he had used the exact same one on occasion. He knew that the only way out of these was a key, a key that the female likely didn’t have. If these were who he thought they were, they would not make such a stupid mistake. He had no idea where he was, the room was featureless, the walls and floors utterly devoid of any markings that might tell him anything. And the gravity was the same, but that meant little, shipboard systems could mimic even Correllia’s occasional odd gravity fluctuations. But most of his attention as on the form that was leaning toward shim again, a glint of bloody metal in her hand.

The brown skinned Twi’Lek smiled as she met his eyes. Despite years of hunting sentient quarry, of killing some and capturing others, of causing fear in multitudes of beings, bounty hunter Kunda Gev felt fear. Her smile was… empty. Like whatever she was feeling was simply a mask over nothing at all. Like she really wasn’t there, or something…

"Ah..." When the female spoke it was almost kind. Almost. “You woke up. Good…”

He noted that her shoulder was moving normally now. When he had first woken, it had been moving stiffly, and he had congratulated himself on hurting her after that ignoble ambush. All he had been trying to do was find out if these people were his contacts and they had attacked him. He had subdued the three he had initially found and been trying to ascertain who and where the leader was when he had been blindsided by the Twi’Lek and the man with black skin. He hissed in pain as the Twi’lek pulled his cut and bleeding right hand out of the restraint, but he was too weak to fight as she held it up. The female cradled his mangled hand in gentle fingers and then without warning, snapped his fingers back. The dull snaps and the searing pain told him that at least two of them were broken. He couldn’t help it, he screamed into the gag in his mouth.

"Well now." The Twi’lek smiled more naturally now, but he was shaking as she laid his hand back in the restraint and it snapped closed. Her voice was still that horrifying kindly, almost motherly sound. “You have been a bad boy. You hurt my boy toy. I was tempted to make you a eunuch, but in the end, I decided not to. For now anyway…” Her leer told that prisoner that if she did decide to do that, he would feel every moment of it. “Instead…” His eyes went wide as her hands dipped down to the side and came up with a hypospray. “I think you need some humility. You need some discipline, some training. So… Naptime, Idiot boy, let Mama Mi’Ta take care of you….” A hiss and he was falling slowly.

Second rank agent Mi’Ta watched clinically as the bound form of the bounty hunter lost consciousness. Then she sighed and started bandaging the wounds she had caused. She wouldn’t use painkillers or a medical droid. Not for this man. The door behind her hissed open but she didn’t turn, she knew who it was.

"He is beginning to break." Vorren’s voice was clinical. “Well done, Mi’Ta.”

"Why are we bothering with him?" Mi’Ta asked with a snort. “This man is pathetic. He was whimpering after the third cut. Are you absolutely sure you want to keep this moron?”

"Yes." Vorren nodded slowly. “He is stupid, yes, but skilled. He did manage to take Olut, Olandas and Rillian. And I don’t think he intended to shoot Rillian, it was a reflex.”

"And?" Mi’Ta snarled. “Do you think I care?”

"Mi'ta..." Vorren shook his head. “Of course not. Just like I know what your real feelings for Rillian were. I was goign to tell you not to lead him on too far, Mi’Ta.” The higher ranked agent cautioned.

"I..." Mi’Ta paused in her bandaging and looked her compatriot in the eye. “I don’t know.” She said candidly. “He made me feel… Different.”

"Oh?" Vorren raised an eyebrow. “How so?”

Mi’Ta finished her treatment, slapped the unconscious man hard across the face once and turned back to face her superior. She nodded to the door and the two agents started out. Her voice was soft, reflective, as she walked. “I don’t know. You trained me to examine my feelings, but this isn’t one I recognize.”

"Ok, we work this through." Vorren cast a sidelong look at her as he walked. That wasn’t a tone he had heard from her before. “Define it.” His tone was a teacher to student.

"It isn't love as I knew it." Mi’Ta sighed. “It isn’t lust, although I do feel that of course…” She grinned a bit as they exited the room and she slapped the hatch closed behind them. “It isn’t fear, it isn’t hate, it isn’t pain, it isn’t joy. It seems to have bits of all of these, and none of them…” Her tone was confused as the pair walked through the safehouse.

They were not in the safehouse that Gev had ambushed them in. That one was compromised and would not be used again. They had managed, with some difficulty, to get the two unconscious men and all of their equipment across Coronet to another safehouse without attracting attention. This one was fully equipped as well, with the hidden soundproofed interrogation room that Gev was slumbering in at the moment as well as the fully stocked medical clinic that they were entering now.

Vorren watched in silence as Mi’Ta checked Rillian’s vitals before sighing and shaking her head slowly. Her face… Vorren slumped and then waved her into another room, one he knew as empty. Rillian was the worst off, but Olut had apparently fought hard as well. He was resting and recovering as Sith did, cantankerously. So obnoxious had he been in fact that Mi’Ta had programmed a droid to keep him sedated until she decreed otherwise. Vorren waved Mi’Ta to a chair and after a moment, she sat. The elder agent sat as well, his face impassive as he looked his protégé over.

"Boss?" Mi’Ta broke the silence. “Is this love?” Her voice was hesitant.

“Yes.” Vorren nodded. “I am sorry, Mi’Ta. I… I had hoped you would find someone you could care for. But… not like this…” Rillian was fading. Unless they took him to a full fledged medical facility, he was unlikely to survive the day. And doing that while undercover… Even if the Republic didn’t kill him, Imperial Intelligence or his own superiors likely would to keep the team’s cover. Vorren would likely get a call in that case, the kind of call he hated. The call to terminate a teammate. He had done it before, more than once, the needs of the mission and all that, but he never liked doing it.

"I..." Mi’Ta shook her head slowly. “I haven;t felt like this in a long, long time.… I never realized. I always joked about it, I always made light of it. Oh, boss, what do I do?” For once her voice was not dead or full of fake emotion. Instead the small, scared voice of the Twi’Lek he had found in a collapsed mine shaft spoke to him and he nodded slowly.

"Oh girl..." Vorren patted her shoulder gently. “Mi’Ta, this will be harder than anything you have ever had to do. But we cannot break cover.”

"I... No..." Mi’Ta shook her head slowly. “There has to be a way, make him a John Doe or something…” But her voice held no hope.

“Mi’Ta… You know better.” Vorren shook his head. "I am sorry." Even the best of subterfuges would fail, given enough time and scrutiny. And since the team was on planet clandestinely, they could not allow such a thing to happen. The mission as too important.

"I..." The Twi’Lek looked like she wanted to cry, but she couldn’t. She wouldn’t. “I…”

"Mi'ta..." Vorren just sat, impassive and silent as his student worked her way through her emotions. Finally he spoke softly. “What would he want you to do?”

"Rillian?" She asked and Vorren nodded. Mi’Ta sighed and spoke calmly. “Continue the mission.” Her voice went hard now. “And the hunter?”

"We have a use for him." Vorren smiled, an expression that might have given a large aquatic predator goosebumps. “Leave him to me…”

"Boss?" Mi’Ta looked at him, her expression wary. “What are you going to do?”

"We are short now." Vorren sighed. “We need a gunner, and his skills are impressive.”

"You cannot be serious." Mi’Ta shook her head slowly. “We cannot trust him.”

"I know." Vorren nodded. “I have no intention of trusting him at all. You have Alpha-9 in your kit, right?”

Mi’Ta froze, but then she nodded slowly. “Yes. I do.” Her voice now held feral hunger. “Can I do it?”

"Of course." Vorren smirked. “Wouldn’t dream of trying to get in your way. But… It can wait a few hours… Gev is not going anywhere.”

"Boss?" Mi’Ta looked at Vorren, her face perplexed. “I… I don’t understand.” She froze as Vorren stood up and walked towards her. He lifted her into his arms and embraced her.

“I love you as a daughter Mi’Ta, I always have. So I say this as a father. Stay with your love. He may not see you, but he will know you are there. It will comfort him to have you talk to him. Until the end.” He felt wetness on his shoulder as his own eyes burned and his best student cried into his shoulder. “You are off duty until then.”

"But..." Mi’Ta stiffened. “You need me…”

"It's okay, Mi'ta." Vorren smiled sadly as he stroked her lekku in ways that had soothed her since she was tiny. “I can manage.” It always amazed him how tall and strong the small woman he had found in the collapsed mine shaft had grown. But then again, she had tried to please him. At least she no longer worshiped the ground he walked on. Lorna had, um… dissuaded the Twi’lek of any notions quite stringently, but at the same time, Lorna loved the girl too. Mi’Ta was a treasure, a dangerous, spiky treasure, but a treasure. They had taken the half starved, fearful and almost broken little one in and given her purpose and direction, as well as training to become one of the Empire’s secret weapons. She might actually make a decent Cipher agent, Vorren mused, with a bit more training and experience. She had the touch. But right now, she had to face the hardest test. Save the one she loved, or finish the mission?

"Okay... But..." MI’Ta nodded. “I… Thank you. I will… Should I…? I know he is in pain, I ….”

"Oh girl..." Vorren sighed. “I cannot advise you on this, Mi’Ta. Do what you think is right.” Mi’Ta nodded and then both stepped back from their mutual embrace. The female Twi’Lek slumped for a moment and then straightened and without another word, walked out into the medical area. Vorren followed silently and watched as she worked the controls of the machinery connected to Rillian’s body. In moments a massive dose of muscle relaxants flew through the unconscious soldier’s body. Her head bowed as the medical monitors went off, signifying cardiac arrest, and she sat down heavily with the soldier’s hand in hers as he breathed his last. For a long time, she just sat there, head bowed.

"It's done." When she finally met Vorren’s eyes, her face was hard. “I will handle our newest recruit.”

"Right." Vorren nodded. “I wouldn’t have it any other way.”
My stories in order:
Love, the Force, and Everything Discussion thread here

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kalenath
07.05.2012 , 12:17 PM | #2
Kunda Gev woke to the sounds of medical equipment around him. For just a moment, he hoped he had been rescued somehow, that he had been taken to a hospital, but then an acid etched voice sounded near his ear.

“Ah, we are awake…” His eyes shot open and he screamed as the form of the Twi’Lek who had hurt him appeared in his vision, close enough to kiss. Well, he tried to scream but something was in his mouth. It didn’t feel like the gag that had been in it before. If he looked down, he could just make out something that looked like a tube coming out of his mouth. But when he tried to move his head, he couldn’t. The Twi’Lek shook her head. “No, no… Don’t try to move too soon, idiot boy. You just got out of surgery. We wanted to make sure you were tracking.”

The bounty hunter’s eyes went wide. Surgery? He tried to speak, but the tube in his mouth garbled his words.

"Oh yes." The Twi’Lek nodded as if she understood what he had said. “It was decided that we not kill you, over my objections, I want you to know. And for my sins, they put me in charge of you. So I will take care of you while you recover from the implantation, but if you step out of line, I will hurt you. Do I make myself clear?”

The hunter had been following her words and froze on the word ‘implantation’. His eyes turned fearful and the Twi’lek smiled. Her breath was hot as she leaned close. It tasted… salty?

"I see I do make myself clear." Her voice was kind and gentle as she spoke, in stark contrast to her words. “You mess up and I will make you pray for death, a death that will not come for weeks or months. Ah, I see you are curious as to what we did?”

She laughed a bit maliciously and reached for something nearby. The hunter tensed, but then relaxed as her hand came up with a mirror. But then, when she held it up so he could see his head, he screamed again into the tube in his mouth. His short hair was gone. A white bandage was wrapped around his head, and he could see thicker bandages under it in two places. The Twi’Lek angled the mirror again and he could see his lower body stretched out on the table. He was shaking as he saw bandages over his ribcage and stomach as well.

Horrifyingly, the Twi’lek’s voice was still kind. “We wanted to be sure you wouldn’t get into too much trouble so we placed several devices inside you. One is a tracker, one is a bomb, and one is for punishment and the last, well, the last is the one you will be most concerned with. It was decided that we not kill you, and since we are shorthanded now, thanks to you, you will take the place of the man you killed. But of course we can’t trust you, so we found a means to keep you under control. One we like and you will not.”

The hunter was trying to shake his head and his eyes held fury, but the Twi’Lek just smiled wider. “You have been poisoned, Kunda Gev. You have exactly…” She looked at her chrono. “…eight hours and three minutes to live. We are the only beings in the galaxy with the antidote to that poison. So think well on whether you want to work for us or not. You will sleep for a time to recover. I will be back in seven hours.”

With that, she left the room, leaving the man to stare after her and scream impotently into the tube in his mouth. Eventually a droid hovered close and an appendage touched his arm. Waves of lassitude pulled him under but he was still screaming as he fell unconscious.

Outside the room that had been set aside as a recovery ward, Mi’Ta leaned against the wall for a moment. It was hard to act as she was. To act as if she cared, to act as if she wanted anything other than to cut this lousy excuse for a human into small quivering chunks with her knife. She heard steps coming and identified them easily; the being did not bother with subterfuge normally.

"Mi'ta?" Olandas’ voice was quiet. “Can we talk?”

"Olandas.." Mi’Ta smiled a bit at the tech’s uncertain tone. “Aren’t we?” Olandas was not the best when it came to social things, she was sharp as a razor when it came to tech and tech related things, but emotions? Normal social interactions? Not hardly. Mi’ta had been making some progress while they had been in transit, but now… Mi’Ta had been busy.

"Oh Mi'ta." Olandas laughed just a little. “You know what I mean.”

Mi’ta nodded and waved the young human into another room, an empty one. This safehouse was larger than the last one, better equipped. But it hadn’t been enough to save Rillian. This was a bedroom and Mi’ta shook her head as she sat. Her voice was kind when she spoke, but a bit distracted. “What can I do for you, Olandas?”

"I..." The tech stood, her posture hesitant, her voice when she spoke was unsure. “I… I am not sure. You helped me, on the ship, I was… I know I was detaching, but it was all I knew. You made me see you, and the others as people, not as numbers. I…” Her eyes were glistening now. “I want to help you.”

"You can’t, Olandas." Mi’Ta shook her head slowly. “Thank you, but... I have to get through this on my own. I did not realize I was falling for Rillian.”

Olandas smiled a little sadly. “I did.”

"Oh?" Mi’Ta shook her head. “It was that obvious?” She asked quietly.

Olandas shook her head. “Not at all. You… You opened up to me a bit more than to the others. I don’t think you intended to. But, I didn’t trust you when I came aboard. I had heard stories about you.”

"Yeah." Mi’Ta shook her head slowly. “Many of those stories are true, Olandas. You were closed quite tight when I met you.”

"Can you blame me?" Olandas nodded. “I was scared out of my mind. Bad enough that Musano Vorrn himself had recruited me for this mission, but then here you were, the ice Twi’lek. You scared the flarg out of me when you asked me to talk to you.”

"I know." Mi’ta nodded. That had been obvious. It had taken an hour to get Olandas to open up at all. It had also taken some ‘special’ persuasion on Mi’ta’s part. “You haven’t been so tense recently, I… I hope I helped.”

"You did." Olandas sid with a smile and a nod. Then she did something that had Mi’Ta freezing in place. She opened her jumpsuit and stepped out of it. “You need this.”

Mi’ta shook her head. “Olandas, this is not a good…” She broke off as Olandas did something odd. She knelt a bit awkwardly and then produced a pair of ankle scuffs from the pocket of her jumpsuit and latched them in place. “Olandas… No…”

"Mi'ta..." Olandas shook her head slowly. “You need this, and you won’t kill me.”

"Who...?" Mi’ta stared at the human woman. “Who… Who told you about my… My…”

"It's okay, Mi'ta." Olandas smiled as she produced something else from her jumpsuit where it lay on the floor. Handcuffs. “No one. It just so happens I share the same fantasies, albeit from the other side. It took me a while to realize some of what you had said the last time we talked.” Olandas held out her hands slowly, the cuffs in them. “I won’t push you, but… I think you need this, especially now.”

"No... I can't." Mi’Ta shook her head, but she couldn’t stare away from the vision in front of her. She felt her body responding to the sight and smells, but she forced it back. “Olandas…This is bad idea…”

"I like it." Olandas smiled widely. “I have been bad, Mistress, please punish me…”

"Olandas..." Mi’Ta stared at the human for a long moment before rising slowly. Her voice was quiet, almost scared. For her, that was more than any number of screams of horror. “Do you have any idea what you are asking me to do…?”

"I am 25. Well over the age of consent Mi'ta. Yes I know what I am asking and why." Olandas smiled. “I asked the boss if I could ‘discuss’ things with you. We have a couple of hours. You need this. To relax. There are no strings attached, unless you want to that is…” She leered at the Twi’Lek. And then her eyes took on a feigned fearful cast. “I have been bad…”

"Oh... girl..." Mi’Ta sighed and then she smiled, evilly. “Yes you have, and you must be punished.” She took the cuffs from Olandas, noting that they were not normal cuffs, these had been designed to be easy for the person in them to get out of. She shook her head slowly, It seemed that Olandas had been hiding things, successfully, from Imperial Intelligence. With a practiced flip, she slapped the cuffs onto the human’s wrists and snarled. “You have indeed been very bad, girl, it is time to punish you…”

<Some time later>

Mi’Ta just sat and watched as Olandas slept. The Twi’Lek shook her head. It had been… She sighed, it had been amazing, but now she had to go back to work. She moved to the bed and patted Olandas’ head. The girl stirred and her eyes focused on Mi’Ta.

"Good morning Olandas." Mi’Ta’s voice was quiet. “May be we can do that again sometime, but not any time soon.”

"As I said,..." Olandas nodded. “No strings Mi’Ta. But you needed it.”

“I did, thank you…” The team medic checked the wounds she had inflicted on the girl quickly and professionally. All were painful, but none were dangerous. She bandaged a couple of them, just in case. The black eyes, she couldn’t do much for, besides a painkiller that she injected deftly, but at least she hadn’t broken any of Olandas’ bones.

“I should be thanking you, that was incredible.” Olandas didn’t move as Mi’Ta worked. Of course the way she was tied to the bed precluded her moving much at all. But when Mi’Ta moved to untie her, Olandas frowned. “Do you have to? I feel… safer like this.”

"Olandas..." Mi’Ta shook her head as she looked at the chrono. “You are weird, girl. But no, you don’t go on shift for another four hours.”

"Thank you." Olandas smiled as Mi’Ta stood back from the bed. “If… If you want to… Could we do this again…?”

"Not soon." Mi’Ta shook her head in resignation. “Maybe, but you need time to heal, no matter what. I won’t endanger you.”

Olandas smiled widely as she lay back in the bed. “I know.”
My stories in order:
Love, the Force, and Everything Discussion thread here

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kalenath
07.05.2012 , 12:21 PM | #3
Mi’Ta was actually smiling as she left the room Olandas was dozing off again in. She knew this was a fluke, likely a once off, but something… She shook her head, this was not important. What was important was the patient she was going to check on now. Her good mood lasted until she reached the door of the room that their newest acquisition was in. She keyed up the video camera that showed the inside of the room and snarled quietly.

“Idiot boy…” The Twi’Lek’s voice held equal parts bemusement, resignation and anger as she saw the hunter out of the bed and trying to open the door. She smiled thinly as she hit a command on her remote and the man convulsed. Even through the soundproofing of the room, she could hear the muted screams as current flew from the implant in the pain centers of his brain. She opened the door and sighed. “You just don’t learn do you?”

The human stared at her but his eyes were unfocused as he writhed on the floor. Now she switched her voice to what she called her ‘Mom mode’. Most subjects found it incredibly disturbing to have someone talk to them in such a kindly tone while doing such horrible things to their bodies. It made an effective wedge to break people’s psyches with. Mi’Ta lifted the brawny form off the floor easily and carried him back to the bed as he whimpered. “If you have started any of your wounds bleeding again, I will beat you for an hour.”

Gev was utterly incapable of speech as she strapped him down to the bed again; this time however, she used padded restraints. This was not out of any sense of kindness, but to keep him from injuring himself when she did what she was going to do. She was under orders not to permanently injure the man, no matter her wishes. Her voice was still kind, but now held sadness as she checked his injuries.

“Well, it looks like you did no permanent harm to yourself with that stunt. Well now…” She looked the man over. Pity. If he hadn’t been such a creep and an idiot… He wasn’t half bad looking. She checked the readouts of the other implants and then checked the medical sensors. By then Gev managed to croak out words.

His voice was low and the pain in it was music to her ears. “What have you done to me?” He froze as she met his eyes. She smiled kindly, and he shuddered as she shook her head slowly.

“I told you, you are our newest recruit. You know who we are.” It wasn’t a question, and Gev couldn’t nod as strapped down as he was.

"Yeah." Gev’s voice was small. “Imperial Intelligence…”

"Yep." Mi’ta nodded. Her voice was still that kindly tone and Gev shuddered as her hand caressed his brow. “Yes, you very nearly blew our mission, idiot child. You mortally wounded one of our group. So, our leader has said you will take his place.” Her voice was still kindly as she started rummaging through a cabinet nearby. This would get messy if she didn’t act quickly.

"Never!" Gev snarled defiantly. “I won’t work for you.” His defiance however, was hollow. He was strapped to a bed, naked, at the mercy of a being who obviously had none. Mi’Ta shook her head slowly and smiled as she found what she was looking for. Gev stared at her as she pulled a package from the cabinet and then his eyes went wide as she unwrapped it. He couldn’t make out what it was, but knowing her, it was nothing good. He tensed as she reached underneath him, lifted him up slightly and laid the plain white thing under his rear end. He stared at her as she spread a white powder of some kind on the white thing and then… He blanched as he realized what she was doing. She was putting a diaper on him! He snarled. “Stop!”

"Nope." Mi’Ta shook her head. “In about three minutes you are going to lose control of your bowels and bladder. Better this way. Less messy for me anyway.” She ignored his protests and struggles as she finished what she was doing. Once she was done, she sat back in a chair beside the bed and just looked at him. “I never introduced myself. My name is Mi’Ta. You may call me ‘Mistress’. Actually you will call me ‘Mistress’, whether you want to or not.” Gev snarled at her and she smiled. “That’s right, boy, fight it, struggle for all you are worth. This is only going to end one way, but if you fight, it makes it go so much quicker.”

"Witch..." Gev was obviously trying to get his mind around her tone and words when he froze. “Uh… I…” Recognizable smells and sounds came the bed and Mi’Ta smiled widely.

“Good boy.” Mi’Ta patted the bound man’s head as she checked her readouts. “Right on time.” She sat back and smiled wider, things were proceeding as planned. “Now, as to what we did to you… You already found out about the punishment node. We placed the implant within the pain centers of your brain. Attached to it is our ‘special’ insurance policy. If you get captured or manage somehow to get away, the bomb nestled between the hemispheres of your brain will go off. If either of them are tampered with, the bomb goes off.” Gev stared at her. “Oh don’t worry…” Mi’Ta reassured him. "The detonation signal is discrete and specific. Nothing other than the command signal can trigger it, but if it does... Well… You will have a massive cerebral hemorrhage. Republic Intelligence would be able to determine that the damage was done by a bomb, no one else probably. And you won’t care.”

"You are enjoying this..." Gev stared at her. “You evil witch…”

"Now, now..." Mi’Ta shook her head and spoke sadly. “Is that any way to talk to the being who is the only reason you still breathe and have brain function? The other two implants are fairly straightforward. We put a tracker node in and then we put in my favorite toy of them all.” Gev stared at her and Mi’Ta laid agent hand on his abdomen over a bandage there. “The last implant is a time release reservoir. It contains a substance that has no name, only a designation. One you are not cleared for. But what it does is much more important, to you anyway. It is both a drug and a poison. It will enhance the pain receptors I your body, meaning that if I hit you….” She slapped him gently on the side and he screamed in pain. Her voice was still kindly however. “…it hurts worse. The part you need to be concerned about is this: It is addictive, more so than even glitterstim. The cravings have already started. That is why you lost bowel control. Once that happens, you have an hour, max.”

"What?" Gev was breathing hard, trying to focus. “An hour until what?”

"An hour until your body expires." Mi’Ta smiled widely. “Until the substance builds up enough in your bloodstream to kill you. The antidote causes intense pain. Nothing you have felt so far even comes close, and under the effects of the poison, well… You will not enjoy this I am afraid.” Her hand was soft as it caressed his brow gently. “But I will…”

"You...!" Gev stared at her and then snarled. “You don’t own me!”

"Bluster all you want, idiot." Mi’Ta smiled sadly, and her voice was still that awful kindness as she fiddled with controls. “Yes we do. Today, you get a free dose, but from now on, you will have to earn them. Doses last twenty four hours, and I am the only one with the antidote. So, from this day forth, you will have to make me want to give you the antidote. Every. Single. Day.” Her face was still smiling as she pulled a hypospray from her pocket, checked it swiftly and injected him with the contents. Her voice was now malicious as he started to convulse in the straps, a gurgling scream coming from his mouth. “Enjoy it, I know I will…”
My stories in order:
Love, the Force, and Everything Discussion thread here

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kalenath
07.05.2012 , 12:23 PM | #4
The Twi’lek watched with barely concealed arousal as the man fought what was happening to him. Mi’Ta’s only true complaint with Alpha-9 was that it never lasted long enough. But that wasn’t really the fault of the drug, it was more the endurance factor of the beings who were exposed to it. And it did take nine and half minutes by her chrono until Kunda Gev succumbed to exhaustion and fell unconscious. That was nowhere near a record, she had read of a captured Jedi resisting for half an hour once, but for a non-Force user? She grudgingly admitted the man was strong. She shook her head as she cleaned him and put a fresh diaper on. The humiliation factors would work to help break the man and breaking people was what she did. Pain, sense of dislocation, fear, humiliation all of these were wedges she could use to gain purchase to the man’s psyche. And right now, she needed to do just that. She needed to get a handle on him, quickly. They did not have an unlimited amount of time on planet. Zindra and Loc were due back any day with the ship, and they were still no closer to finding and capturing their quarry, thanks to this idiot’s interruption. So they needed him complaint and focused on helping them. She blinked. Maybe…

A few minutes later, she was talking quietly as she untied Olandas from the bed. The girl was pouting a bit as Mi’Ta undid the restraints, but her gaze was intent as Mi’Ta explained. Olandas shook her head.

“You want me to play a prisoner?” The tech shook her head slowly as she sat up, but she wavered a bit and Mi’Ta caught her as she nearly fell over. “Whoa…” Olandas smiled a bit.

"Easy, Olandas..." Mi’Ta shook her head. “Take it easy, you haven’t rested enough.”

"I dunno Mi'ta." Olandas shook her head. “I am no actor Mi’Ta. Yes, I hid my… well, my cravings from Imperial Intelligence, but… This…?” Her voice held worry.

"Not a problem." Mi’Ta’s face was sad now. “You wouldn’t have to. It wouldn’t be an act.”

"Not a..." Olandas stared at her, and then nodded slowly. “You… This is dumb, of course you wouldn’t kill me…” She paused as Mi’Ta grimaced.

“No intentionally, Olandas, but…" Mi'ta said sadly. "It has happened. Either he may get violent, or I might get overzealous, or…” Mi’Ta broke off as Olandas embraced her.

“What do I do?” The tech asked quietly, but with fierceness in her voice.

Mi’Ta returned her embrace. “Lie down and relax.” Olandas did as ordered and Mi’Ta laid a hypo again the woman’s neck. “Sleep, I will take care of you…” Olandas’ eyes were heavy, she closed them and Mi’Ta shook her head slowly as she arranged the girl on the bed carefully. The door hissed behind her and she didn’t have to turn to know who was there.

"Mi'ta." Vorren’s voice was quiet. “Do you want me to do it?” Mi’Ta shook her head. “Mi’Ta…” His voice held resignation as well as worry now.

“I am the medical person, I will do it.” Mi’Ta stared at the supine form and then began. Her fists cracked into the body in front of her and her face was hard as she beat the woman she liked.
My stories in order:
Love, the Force, and Everything Discussion thread here

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kalenath
07.05.2012 , 12:29 PM | #5
Kunda Gev woke to an utterly unprecedented feeling. Someone was gently washing his face. For a time, he simply lay there. Careful checking showed his wrists and ankles were still bound but the hands that touched him were gentle. He opened his eyes and froze. He knew this woman! It was the woman he had knocked unconscious when he had first arrived in the house that he believed held the contact for his bounty. She and the others had taken offense to his arrival unannounced, and he had been forced to use gas on them. But… Something was different. Her face was a mass of bruises, both eyes were blackened and he tensed as he saw her arm in a cast. He hadn’t done that.

He opened his mouth. “Who…?” He froze as the woman placed a finger over his mouth and shook her head. Then he saw that her own mouth was covered by something, she couldn’t talk. He stared at her as she continued to wipe his body down with a soft wet cloth. Her hands were soft and kind as she cleaned him. It had been a while, he realized as she scrubbed parts of his body. He had no idea how long he had been a prisoner, but it had been a while. He didn’t resist as she undid the horrible thing around his waist and with a shudder, wadded it up and discarded it. Then she continued her washing. He shivered a bit as her ministrations reached tender areas, but the washing continued to be gentle and utterly professional. Without any funny business, she started on his legs. It was not long at all before she was done. He shivered a bit in the cool air, but then she was drying his skin with a soft towel.

It felt… heavenly. The simple fact of being clean was a powerful feeling. And the fact that the strange woman’s hands were gentle and kind as she did what she was doing had the bounty hunter relaxing. Even when she put a new diaper on him, he was still relaxed. He hadn’t realized that his bandages had been removed until she started putting new ones on him, but that made sense. Even supposedly waterproof bandages were not always proof from soap and warm water. His cuts stung, his burns itched, and the magnified pain was great, but the feelings of gentle hands on his body soothed him. He was utterly relaxed, on the verge of sleep, when the door hissed open and his nightmare stalked in.

The Twi’Lek known as Mi’Ta was obviously angry. She sighed at the woman and her voice was sad. It was horrifying that her voice was still the kind, motherly one that the Twi’Lek had used when torturing him. “Of all the… I told you to change him, not clean him…” Gev could only watch as the Twi’Lek hit the human woman, sending her flying across the room. The woman hit the wall and slid down, obviously stunned as the Twi’Lek stalked over to her. Gev stared as the Twi’Lek hoisted the human up, and sitting down in a chair nearby, laid the human over her knee and started slapping the human’s rear end. “I have told you… And told you… And told you… Obey your orders… But no… You just have to be nice, don’t you…? You just cost me a week’s worth of work.” As she spoke, she spanked the woman, punctuating each sentence with a slap.

Gev stared at the two. A week? He had been here a week?

The human woman was crying now, but the Twi’Lek kept hitting her. The horrifying thing was that Mi’Ta still had the same tender expression on her face as she used with Gev when she tortured him.

Gev stared at the Twi’Lek and then at the human. She was being punished for being nice to him. But he didn’t really care. He wanted to get out of here, maybe he could use her kindness to get away? As if she read his mind, the Twi’Lek met his gaze and smiled, again it was a tender smile, but he shivered.

She dropped the human woman in a heap on the floor as she stood and started towards where he lay. Her voice was sad when she spoke. “Discipline must be maintained. Don’t you agree, boy?” Her hand stroked his jaw and he shivered a bit from the caress, but he looked away. A slap had his eyes watering and a shudder wracked his body as the pain enhancing drug did its job. “Pay attention, boy. Your old life is over. Now you belong to us. Mess up and you get punished. Do as we wish and be rewarded. Your choice.” Gev mustered the spirit he had left and spit at her. The glob of mucus hit her on the face and he rejoiced for a moment. She just shook her head. “Fine… I like the hard way…”

In the long and incredibly painful time that followed, he was dimly aware of two things when he was aware of anything except the pain. One, the Twi’Lek was working very hard not to kill him. And two, the other occupant of the room was lying on another bed. When had that come in here? He had been sure there had only been one bed in here. A dim figure was working on her and he heard screams from that side of the room. But they barely made it through the haze of pain and fear that surrounded him now as the Twi’Lek worked.

Finally, she patted gently him on the head. Her voice was that same horrifying mom voice that so unnerved him. “Good session today boy. You are coming along nicely. So… Your reward… Another day of life.” He felt something, and then he realized his bowels had loosened. From the poison… He stared as she fiddled with a hypo and then his eyes went wide as he took her meaning.

“No…” His voice was hoarse, soft and horrified as she reached for him.

"Idiot boy. I am saving your life." Her smile was warm and she spoke. “Oh relax. It won’t kill you.” She touched the hypo to his neck and he convulsed in the straps as the antidote to the poison shot through his system. The antagonism between the two substances had a nasty side effect, causing intense pain that was then amplified by the secondary effects of the poison. His screams were loud and long, and he prayed for the mercy of unconsciousness, but it was denied to him. All he could do was writhe in his restraints as he suffered. He heard soft words.

"Ah boy..." Mi’Ta’s voice was soft and full of promise as she leaned close to his face. “I will see you in the morning.”

After an eternity of pain, Kunda Gev slumped in his restraints as the effects wore off. He could only cry as he lay there. Then he froze. A gentle hand had touched his cheek. Something warm lay down beside him and gentle hands held his head as he sobbed. The same gentle hands caressed his brow and he heard noises. He stared into the face of the woman he had seen when he woke. She was even more of a mess now, her jaw obviously dislocated. She was murmuring something, something he couldn’t quite make out. It sounded like… ‘Sleep’? Whatever it was, he was too tired to argue.

<Nearby>

Mi’Ta had herself under rigid control as she watched the scene through the two way mirror. This safe house had been set up with all of the things Imperial Intelligence agents might need. They would have to be very careful not to compromise it, the items and equipment in here were irreplaceable anywhere in Republic space. She watched as Olandas held the shivering wreck in gentle hands and soothed him into sleep. The door behind her hissed and she nodded to her boss as he stepped to the window.

“Almost there.” She said quietly. "We are on schedule."

"So I see." Vorren nodded. “We will put him in the tank in eight hours. You have softened him up nicely.”

"You and II trained me well." Mi’Ta nodded. “It is what I do. Um… About Olandas…”

"I know." Vorren smiled. “I am putting her in for a commendation. I didn’t; think a wound medal would go over well with Command. Not with how she got injured, so I put it as ‘performance above and beyond’. I think that will work.”

"Yes." Mi’Ta smiled. “She is good, even though I know it is not an act, one has to wonder… You knew, didn’t you? About her… um… urges?” Vorren didn’t respond and Mi’ta sighed. “I thought so. Quit trying to match make me.”

"Mi'ta..." Vorren sighed. “It is what adoptive fathers do, Mi’Ta. How are you doing?”

"Me?" Mi’Ta sighed. “Coping. It hurts, but I am dealing with it. Hurting him helps a bit. This won’t ever go away, will it?” Her voice was resigned.

"I wish." Vorren shook his head. “No. It will lessen, as time dulls the memories, but it won’t ever go away.”

"I almost wish I was addicted to Han lotus blooms now, I hear that if you take enough, pain goes away completely." Mi’Ta shook herself. “The others?”

"Yeah." Vorren nodded. “The ship is back, they brought some news. Setsuna Andal is definitely here, but hiding. That girl is fiendishly clever at hiding. Stands to reason, she has been doing it for long enough. But now the Jedi are definitely involved. And…” He sighed. “I have received notice that Istara Andal may be on her way here.”

"Ick." Mi’Ta grimaced. If the older sister of the girl they were hunting found them, well, mess would be the least of the words used to describe what would happen. “Then we had better get moving. I can push up the tanking...” Her voice was dubious however.

"No." Vorren shook his head. “No, you have already done marvels. If I didn’t know better, I would think he had been in there for weeks. Not two days. We want him compliant, not shattered.”

"Hmmm..." Mi’Ta nodded, her brain obviously working in overdrive. “We can do that. He is right on the verge now. With Olandas being kind and me being the ice queen, he is not sure which way is up.”

"Right." Vorren nodded as he turned to look at a piece of strange apparatus nearby. In size and shape, it resembled a Kolto tank, but instead of Kolto, it held something else. He checked the readouts and nodded. “It will be ready tomorrow morning. He is losing touch. Another session?”

Mi’ta nodded. She left the room and Vorren watched as she entered the torture room, berating Olandas yet again for disturbing her guest’s sleep. He watched with a wince as she hit Olandas again and the girl fell without a word. It was a good thing the girl liked pain, he mused. He watched as the bounty hunter, dazed and confused from lack of sleep, drugs and torture, tried to resist, but it was insidious. Time was definitely not on the bounty hunter’s side now. Of course, Vorren sighed, it wasn’t on their either. If Istara Andal did find them hunting her sister, well, bad didn’t begin to cover it. Not even close…
My stories in order:
Love, the Force, and Everything Discussion thread here

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kalenath
07.05.2012 , 12:36 PM | #6
Kunda Gev was floating. He was not awake, per say, but he was not asleep either. When he could concentrate on what was happening, which was not very often, he marveled at the lack of pain. He felt almost free for the first time since he had woken in the care of the evil Twi’Lek. So what if twinges flew through his body on occasion? So what if someone was talking just below his ability to hear? He felt good. And he felt…whole.

Commander Vorren, Imperial Cipher agent, smiled as he watched the readouts of the side of the tank. Things were proceeding well. Brainwashing was not an exact science. People had been trying for millennia to find ways to bend others to their will. Users of the Force had an easier time manipulating minds, but even then, the techniques were limited in both scope and effectiveness. So Imperial Intelligence had worked hard to come up with techniques that would work to change a person’s basic mindset without destroying their psyche or what made them unique in the first place. It was difficult, time consuming and entirely too prone to failure to suit Vorren’s peace of mind, but when it worked it was incredibly effective. The subject literally had no idea at all that they were puppets. They retained free will, or at least the illusion of it, while at the same time becoming the perfect sleeper agents. They had no idea at all that they were unknowing, unwitting agents of Imperial Intelligence. Kunda Gev had joined a select group, slaves who did not know they were slaves, who believed with all their hearts that they were free. As far as Vorren knew, there were less than twenty beings in the entire galaxy who had been ‘turned’ this way. And he had no intention at all of finding out who they were.

Musnao Vorren smiled again and then turned to where Mi’Ta was working and frowned slightly. Something was wrong, he was sure of it. Mi’Ta was not a stable individual at the best of times, and now, she was grieving and hiding it well, but… something else was wrong. What was he missing? He shook his head and stepped closer to the bed where Mi’Ta was working.

His voice was quiet enough not to distract while at the same time being clearly audible. “Prognosis Mi’Ta?”

"Boss..." Mi’Ta shook her head slowly. “Tech Olandas is… Commander I made a mistake.”

"Oh?" Vorren stiffened. “How so?”

"I am not totally sure." Mi’Ta met his eyes and her face was worried. “I think she is mildly allergic to the quick heal I gave her. She is showing signs of anaphylaxis. I never…” She shook her head savagely. “I need to keep on top of this. If it gets worse…”

"Right." Vorren bit his lip, but then nodded slowly. Anaphylaxis, or allergic shock, could kill easily. With the tech in the condition she was in, her body was in no condition to fight for it's own survival. His voice was quiet. “I can handle our recruit. What do you need?”

"Ah..." Mi’Ta sighed, but turned back to where the girl was sleeping, her face and body a mass of bandages. “She is going to need the Kolto tank.”

"Okay." Vorren relaxed and smiled. “Well, by the readouts, he won’t be in there for too much longer. Drain and refill takes thirty minutes, this time we won’t need to set the temperature specifically to her body temperature, or add the drugs, so…”

"Right." Mi’Ta nodded. “I will have her ready when the tank is.”

"Hey." Vorren stepped close to the being he called foster daughter and spoke softly. “You did good, Mi’Ta.”

Mi’Ta sighed as she looked over the form in front of her. “Did I? I feel so…” She broke off, as if unable to define how she felt. She caressed the arm of the slumbering girl and Olandas whimpered a bit in her sleep.

Vorren sighed just as deeply. Then he placed a gentle hand on Mi’Ta’s shoulder. “You did. Rillian would be proud of you.” Mi’Ta nodded but remained silent. “Hey…” Vorren took the Twi’Lek in an embrace. “It’s okay. ‘The needs of the many…’, Mi’Ta.”

"I know." Mi’ta nodded as she returned his embrace. “But she is not an enemy.” She waved a lekku at where Olandas was lying. “I… I didn’t want to do it to her. I didn’t want to hurt her…”

"Of course not." Vorren nodded slowly. “She is a team mate, you didn’t want to hurt your teammate.”

"Boss..." Mi’Ta shook her head. “Something is wrong… Something is off… I… I need to be adjusted.”

Crap... Not now... Vorren stared at her and then he nodded slowly. “Once Gev is out and recuperating, once Olandas is out of danger, I will do it.”

"Good." Mi’ta nodded slowly. “Thank you. I do not wish to endanger the… I…” She blinked and her gaze went far away. When it refocused on Vorren, her eyes were confused. “I… what…? You… Wait… You were the one who…” She stiffened and collapsed as Vorren hit her with a hypospray.

"Idiot girl." Vorren sighed as he caught her. “Flarg me… Of all the rotten times…” He laid the unconscious form on the floor and sighed as he checked something. “Of all the…” He shook his head and pulled a container out of a pocket. He connected a port on her stomach to a tube that came from the container and opened a valve. “Yes, you do need adjustment girl, but not here, not now. This will hold you until we can get back…” He felt a presence and spun, blaster in hand, but Apprentice Olut just looked at him.

"Agent..." Olut’s eyes were haunted. “And I thought Sith could be evil. She has no idea, does she?” Vorren just looked at him, and Olut shrugged. “Things didn’t add up. If she was a child when you found her, how long did she stay with you? If you found her in a mineshaft, as a slave, then why does she not hate slavers more? Why does she not fear closed in spaces? Why does she enjoy giving out pain? If she had been hurt so badly, the opposite should be true. Who was she?”

"You are never going to find out." Vorren shook his head. ‘You are not cleared for that information.”

"Understood." Olut shrugged again. “Will she be a problem?”

"No." Vorren shook his head. “Not once the drug reservoir is filled again, she will be the same ice cold sadistic Twi’Lek we know.”

"Fair enough." Olut pursed his lips. “You need my hands now. What do you wish me to do?”

Vorren looked from him to where Olandas lay, to the tank and to where Mi’Ta was slumbering, the machine humming as it disgorged it’s payload into her body. He met Olut’s gaze calmly. “Olandas is not weak.” Sith generally only had one way of dealing with people they believed were weak.

"I know that." Olut laughed sourly. “Weak? Her? Hardly. I have seen Sith who would have been reduced to shivering wrecks taking that much damage in such a short amount of time. You wish me to tend her?”

Vorren looked at him and the Sith shrugged. “Master Nira has some odd notions at times, she made me study healing and anatomy. Part of that is to be able to hurt people better, but part… I am not sure what she wanted from it. I am not sure she knew why she had me study it. She is odd at times. I have also worked in hospitals, both as a Sith and undercover. I am no doctor or nurse, but I do know what to do.”

"Yes." Vorren sighed. “Mi’Ta will be out for about four hours. Olandas needs the tank before then, she is showing signs of anaphylaxis.”

"Understood." Olut nodded soberly. “That I can do. I assume you will handle the draining and cleaning of whatever is in there now?” Vorren noted the man did not ask what it was, smart Sith. “I don’t know what drugs you have used however. The droid?”

"Will stay with Olandas. She is potentially in danger, the others are not." Vorren nodded. “R6, stay with Olandas. ” The squat form of an Imperial astromech droid rolled closer and beeped at them. The astromech was not standard issue, it had all kind of special attachments, tools and programs. Olut moved to sit in a chair beside Olandas’ bed as Vorren scooped the limp Twi’Lek off the floor carefully and carried her from the room.

"Imperial Intelligence..." The Sith looked at the droid and winced. “I do not want to know, do I?” The droid beeped, obviously a negative and the Sith nodded slowly. He scrutinized the readout s and then sat, thinking hard. He was not afraid, per say. More… ready… He had been starting to like Mi’Ta and Vorren. Now he knew that was a mistake, a serious one. He would watch his words and his back from now on.
My stories in order:
Love, the Force, and Everything Discussion thread here

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kalenath
07.05.2012 , 12:46 PM | #7
When he woke, he felt… good. It was odd. He knew something was wrong, but for the life of him, he couldn’t figure out what it might be. He didn’t hurt. He had memories of pain, of fear, or various things, but none of them seemed to matter now. He felt whole for the first time in a long, long time. He catalogued what he could feel. He felt odd, as if he were not totally there. But he did feel good. He stretched languidly as he opened his eyes. The sight that greeted him was expected. His boss sat in a chair nearby. The room was unfamiliar, but felt right, as if he knew where he was, odd as that sounded.

"Agent Vorren." Kunda Gev nodded slowly. “How long was I out?”

"Fourteen hours." Vorren nodded slowly. “The treatments are done, you will make a full recovery.”

"I..." Gev nodded slowly but was frowning as he searched his memories. “What happened? It gets fuzzy after I met you…”

"We messed up." Vorren sighed. “You were out searching and apparently either you got sloppy or we did. I am not sure yet what happened, but I assure you I am looking into it. You were captured by Republic Intelligence. They interrogated you.”

"Then why am I not dead?" Gev stiffened. “I would assume the anti interrogation protocols you put in would handle that. I haven’t worked with intelligence before, I might have goofed somehow…”

"Maybe." Vorren sighed. “We are all mortal Gev, we all make mistake. But rest assured, if it was you, I will have it out of your hide.” The smile the agent wore reassured the bounty hunter however. He was sure that if it was his fault he would be punished, but probably not killed. They needed him. But Vorren was talking again. “They did something new. Something we haven’t been able to identify just yet.”

"One thing..." Kunda Gev frowned in thought. “If they interrogated me, why am I here? They wouldn’t have just let me go… Would they?”

"Hardly." Vorren snorted. “They wrung you out, which was dumb of them, you didn’t know anything about us. And then they put you in police custody for extradition back to Coruscant. You made quite a mess there.” Gev shook his head. That had not been one of his best days. Getting trounced by a Bladeborn might have hurt, until he bled out that is. But getting trapped by the police? He had managed, with some difficulty, to get away and try for the bounty again, only to run afoul of an angry street gang. He still had phantom pain from the beating he had taken.

"Right." Gev sighed. “It seems messing up has become a habit. Maybe you should… I don’t know… Find someone else? Another hunter?” It obviously hurt the man to say that.

"No." Vorren shook his head. “It takes a lot of guts to say something like that. You are a professional, like me. We are not perfect, although we try hard to be. But you managed to fight Istara Sharlina Andal to a standstill. That takes skill.”

"Fight her? Sort of. I took her by surprise, used very trick I had." Gev snorted. “She wasn’t fighting back as hard as she could. When she did, I had no chance at all. Of course I didn’t have my gear that time.”

"It's okay, Gev." Vorren smiled. “Don’t be too hard on yourself. She is exceptional, even in a galaxy full of exceptional people. She has survived things that either of us would have just laid down and died if we had encountered them. And you did manage to disable her, and…” he sighed. “That may come in very handy soon.”

"Wait a sec..." Gev froze. “Andal… That is not a common name. Are you saying that the girl we are hunting…?”

"Yeah." Vorren nodded. “Setsuna Andal is the younger half sister of Istara Sharlina Andal.”

"Ah..." Gev’s eyes went wide. “Holy flarg… We had better be very careful how we do this then.” The Bladeborn would not take kindly to her sister being hurt, especially given how she had reacted to the hunter shooting an idiot boy on Coruscant.

Indeed." Vorren nodded. “Right now, however, you need to eat. Olandas will be in with your breakfast in a few minutes, Just…” Vorren looked uncomfortable.

“What is wrong?” Gev asked when the silence stretched uncomfortably.

"Whoever took you..." Vorren heaved a deep breath. “They took her too, they must have thought she was a witness or something, they didn’t interrogate her very much, thank goodness. If they had we would be out a tech as well as a soldier.”

"What?" Gev froze. “What happened to Rillian?”

"I don't know." Vorren shook his head. “He didn’t come back from his sweep. I… I found his body, in an alley, stripped. I think he was robbed and murdered.”

"No..." Gev slumped. “Aw crap. That kid was a pain in the rear, but he was good.”

"Yeah." Vorren nodded. “We have a replacement coming. But until he gets here, we are short, and Olandas is definitely not fully capable, no matter what she might say. Mi’Ta has her in hand, but I finally managed to get that stubborn Twi’Lek to sleep. So don’t wake her.”

Gev shivered. The medic gave him the creeps. There was something about her that set off his mental ‘RUN!’ alarms.

“Wouldn’t dream of it.” Gev said quietly.

"Look..." Vorren fixed the bounty hunter with a glare. “I know you don’t like her, but you need to work with her. This mission is too important for personal problems to get in the way. Clear?” There was a distinct aura of threat to the final word.

“Clear, boss.” Gev said as he sat up. Well, he tried to. His body protested as he struggled. Finally, after some effort, he managed to roll to a sitting position. Then he froze, he felt something very odd. He stared at himself and his voice was incredulous when he finally managed to speak. “Why am I wearing a diaper?”

"Uh..." Vorren shook his head. “We don’t know what they did to you, but one of the drugs apparently causes incontinence.”

Gev had a disgusted look on his face. “You mean you have… eeewww….”

"Yep." Vorren smiled. “Not even close to the most disgusting job I have done in my life. Good news is that you seem to be getting over whatever they gave you. Good thing, we were running out of diapers.”

"Go ahead, laugh..." Gev snarled. “This is embarrassing!”

"Yes." Vorren nodded. “Which is probably the point, humiliation is a wedge into the psyche. I am glad we got you out.”

"Me too." Gev frowned. “How did you get me out? If I was in police custody…? It’s… blurry. Nothing makes any sense…”

"I am not surprised." Vorren smiled. “You were so hopped up on whatever they gave you, you likely wouldn’t remember if the Supreme Chancellor waltzed by in front of you in a tutu. But to answer your question, you didn’t get away, you were remanded into custody of two officers from the Coruscant Militia.”

"Oh?" Gev stared at the agent and then a sly smile crept across his face. “Those two officers wouldn’t have been a human male and a Twi’lek female, would they?” He wouldn’t put anything past these two Imperial agents.

"You know better than that." Vorren smiled. “I will neither confirm nor deny. Get better, we need you.” With that, he stood up and walked out, leaving Gev to ponder things.

Vorren walked into the next room and nodded as Olandas finished preparing the meal. “He is going to be too stunned by your appearance to comment on the taste of the food.” The tech nodded stiffly.

She couldn’t do much else. Much of her body was either bandaged or wrapped in casts, but she was mobile, after a fashion, cheerful and she had insisted on helping. Mi’Ta stood nearby, her face worried.

"Careful." The Twi’Lek’s voice was concerned. “Do not push yourself Olandas, we need you.” The female human nodded stiffly, picked up her tray and carried it carefully to the door. Vorren opened it for her and followed her to open the other door for her. He was back in moments.

“What did you think?” Vorren asked as they watched through eth two way mirror as Gev stared at the horrifically battered form that carried his breakfast in. The bounty hunter was dismayed but hid it well.

"It should hold." Mi’Ta sighed. “No obvious holes in the cover story. We will find some, we always do. The Alpha-9 has been purged from his system, now it s just residue. He will be sensitive to pain for the next few days, but we can brush that off as Republic drugs. I… I apologize.”

"That was dumb." Vorren shook his head. “If we were not so short staffed, I would have you out of here right now. Really, Mi’Ta, letting your reservoir fall to that level was a rookie mistake. You know better.”

"I know..." Mi’ta sighed. “I know. I… I was so distracted by him, by Olandas… It won’t happen again.”

"Girl..." Vorren sighed. “Mi’Ta, the cover story I gave Imperial Intelligence is sound, the mental overlays in your mind are solid, but if they pry… Which they will if we give them reason… And letting your medication run out… that was dumb, Mi’Ta.” Without her focusing medication, the Twi’lek was at times a hyperactive five year old and at times a moody seventy year old, and at other times, simply very confused.

"Agreed." Mi’ta nodded. “I know, but… If that does happen, you back off. Do what you have to. Hang me out to dry if you need to. You and your wife saved me, took me in, gave me a reason to exist when all mine were gone. You didn’t need to. Hell, all common sense says you should have killed me or turned me over to your bosses. You didn’t. I will not endanger your wife and kids.” The Twi’lek loved his kids and now that Lorna was expecting again, Mi’Ta was ecstatic.

"No..." Vorren stiffened. “Mi’Ta…”

"No." The Twi'lek said flatly. Mi’ta shook her head. “You took me from that flooding mine shaft, hell, you dove in and cut the chains holding me down. I expected to be interrogated and then killed. You spared me prison and death. I owe you.”

"Sop you have said for years." Vorren sighed. “Just because your masters threw you away doesn’t mean we couldn’t use you. But if Imperial Intelligence finds out you were not just an agent of the Republic… But my counterpart in Republic Intelligence… Even if you have been thrown way or ‘turned’ as it were… We are both dead.” His voice was solemn now.

"Yes sir." Mi’Ta nodded slowly. “I now and I am sorry. It won’t happen again.”

"Also..." Vorren nodded. “As of now, you are out of the field.” Mi’Ta would have protested, but Vorren was implacable. “I need you to go over a bunch of stuff I have found, maybe you can see something I missed. You are a darn good analyst when your head is not filled with lotus blooms.”

Mi’Ta snorted. The cover story they had concocted about her being addicted to Han Lotus blooms, while disgusting and evil, was perfect. No one would expect much from a high level intelligence agent who allowed herself to be addicted to such a thing as an aphrodisiac. Add to that the fact that she detested Republic Intelligence, specifically, the Special Branch that she had worked for. She was one hell of an asset to Vorren in particular and Imperial Intelligence in general. But neither agent could deny that what they were doing was dangerous. If the Republic found out she was alive, or the Empire found out who she really was… Well… Bad things would happen.

"Okay. What about now?" The Twi’Lek pursed her lips. “Do you need me to continue being the ‘Ice Twi’Lek’?”

"Ah...?" Vorren thought for a moment and then shook his head. “No, that part is done. Be yourself. But be careful, Olut is suspicious. And um…” His voice turned wry. “No jumping Olandas.”

Mi’Ta made an obscene gesture at him. “In that condition? You have to be kidding! She is much more likely to jump me! That girl is scary!”Both of the agents shared a laugh as they sat down and started sifting through the piles of reports on the desk.
My stories in order:
Love, the Force, and Everything Discussion thread here

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kalenath
07.05.2012 , 01:00 PM | #8
<The next morning>

Kunda was angry, but not with Mi’Ta. Mi’Ta was being nice for a change.

The Twi’Lek’s voice was kind as she caught him and held him gently while he regained his balance. “Look, you have been the in bed for three days, or course you are going to have trouble adjusting.”

"I… I don’t understand." Gev sighed. “What did they do to me? I feel… weird. Like parts of me are not really there.”

Mi’Ta sighed as she assisted him to a chair. He had insisted on walking to breakfast, and he had not been strong enough. By the fourth step he had been teetering, but through sheer stubbornness, he had made it to the room they had set aside for him, but then he had stumbled and nearly fallen. Something Mi’Ta was not about to let happen. His sensitivity to pain would have had him hollering, and he might have torn her repairs.

"Gev..." Mi’Ta sat in a chair nearby. “Look, we don’t know for sure. If I didn’t know better, I would say they were trying to brainwash you.” Gev stiffened, but Mi’Ta waved a hand. “If so… It didn’t take.”

"Are you sure?" Gev’s voice was worried when he spoke. “Can you be sure?”

"100% sure?" Mi’Ta’s face was a mask. “No. But almost that. It’s very similar to what Special Branch did to some of their subjects, but not… quite.”

"RI Special Branch?" Gev snarled. “The people who experimented on those kids?”

"Yeah." Mi’Ta nodded. “We know they were trying to create weapons to use against the Empire, but the methods…”

Mi’Ta actually looked sick for a moment. Which was a first for her, but Gev could relate. He had not been following the stories at all, being more interested in hunting, but when the holo-vid had carried the Senate hearing where Maria and Sara Kalenath had spoken of their experiences with Republic Intelligence, well… He had toyed occasionally with the idea of going after Will Kalenath. But then he had always said ‘No fracking way.’ The man was not perfect, but he was insanely good at what he did, which was sneak and kill. By all accounts, his kin were even worse news in some ways. Sara’s testimony had almost made the bounty hunter soil himself, the sheer cold blooded, machine like way in which a fourteen year old had described in exquisite detail exactly what had been done to her. He was very glad he hadn’t been in that courtroom, he would have tried to kill those Special Branch prisoners himself.

Gev had been curious, so he had watched the documentary, and… He had been sickened by it. He had seen, and done, horrible things, but the cold blooded, systematic means that Republic Intelligence had used in their attempt to make living weapons was horrifying to say the least. To kidnap people was nothing new, but to operate on them to make them in essence living droids? Yuck. He had actually hunted several of the lesser scum involved -doctors, scientists and such- always bringing them in alive if not always hale. He figured death was too easy, to fast, for scum who would do that kind of thing, and truth be told that was what he lived for, not the ‘bounties’ that were thinly veiled assassinations, no, but the removal of dangerous persons from society by any means necessary. He had become a bounty hunter to make a difference. He had been so young, so stupid back then, he mused. He had lost his illusions a long time ago, but there were some things he still clung to stubbornly. He shook his head and sighed sadly.

"Gev?" Mi’Ta looked at him. “What?”

"I don't know." Gev sighed. “Life seemed to much easier when all I knew was bounty hunting.”

"I know the feeling." Mi’Ta nodded. “Our lives, our jobs just don’t ever get uncomplicated.” She laughed sourly. “Look, you are going to feel strange. If you feel bad, let me know immediately.”

"Ok, to business..." Gev nodded. “I assume my gear is gone?”

"Yeah, sorry." Mi’Ta nodded. “You were not wearing anything when we picked you up. I am sorry. We couldn’t ask for that kind of thing.”

"Well..." Gev snorted. “Given that from what Vorren says, you waltzed into a base to grab me, all I can be is grateful.”

"Hmmm. " Mi’Ta had to smile at his tone. “Well.. Um… Now might be a good time.” She stood up and walked to a closet. “We were going to surprise you when you got back. But then it all went to hell.” She opened the closet and Gev stared at what was inside.

“Whoa… is that a set of Mandalmoters series seven?” His voice was quiet, awed. Mandalmotors manufactured the best gear for bounty hunters, which stood to reason many Mandalorians did bounty hunting and would not settle for garbage. But it was way outside his price range. It was very different from his old gear, but oh my god…

"No." Mi’Ta grinned. “Actually it is series nine.”

"You are kidding...?" Mi'ta smirked and Gev felt faint. "You are not?" Gev’s mouth fell open. And then he smiled. “Do I want to know how you got that? Seeing as how series eight hasn’t even hit the open markets yet?”

"What can I say?" Mi’ta had a sly smile on her face now . “We are Imperial Intelligence, we have eyes everywhere.” But then her face fell. “Olandas was working on it… I don’t know if she is going to be able to for a while.”

At the mention of the hurt tech, Gev went still. “Do we know what happened to her?”

"Some." Mi’Ta nodded. “She hasn’t hidden anything. Not that she could from me, but…” The Twi’Lek sighed. “The same people who had you hurt her. We don’t know why they didn’t try and interrogate her. Maybe they were compromised? I don’t know. I do know they didn’t just beat her.”

"Oh..." Gev froze. A lifetime of dealing with the worst the galaxy had to offer left nothing to the imagination when it came to bad things happening to good people. His voice was quiet. “Is she pregnant?”

"No." Mi’Ta shook her head. “And thank goodness for that. The problem is, we are way behind schedule now. And shorthanded.”

"Right." Gev nodded slowly. “So you need me in the field as soon as possible.”

"Not yet." Mi’Ta held up a cautionary hand. “Not before you are capable. If you get dizzy while flying…” She grimaced and Gev shared it.

“…and I am a greasy splatter. And that does none of us any good.” Gev agreed. He frowned in thought. “The dizziness seems to be passing. But this blasted…” He waved toward where he was still wearing a diaper. Then he nodded slowly. “Can you rig plumbing inside the suit?”

"Um..." Mi’Ta stiffened. “You do know how uncomfortable that will be, right?”

"I can guess." Gev nodded. “Whatever they used seems to be wearing off. I get twinges… Does that mean it is flushing out of my system? In that case, the neurotransmitters will likely…”

"Gev." Mi’ta frowned. “Leave medical stuff to me. To answer your question, yes I can. But I don’t know if I should. There can be all kinds of long term health complications, leaving aside the fact that you will likely be doing things no sane person would in that suit.”

"I..." Gev made an obscene gesture at her and slowly stood up. “I am not a leech. You hired me to do a job.”

"Yes." Mi’Ta rose with him, ready to catch him if it came to that. “And you were hurt in the process. We take care of our own.” She shook her head as he walked almost normally to the closet. “Stubborn human…”

"Yep." Gev picked up the helmet and then turned to smile at Mi’Ta. “Guilty as charged, go on, doc. I can handle this, but… um…”

"Indeed." Mi’Ta nodded. “We found two trackers on it, you will likely find others. If you find anything that looks like a bomb, call us, do not try and disarm yourself. The systems in there are way beyond normal.”

"Okay." Gev nodded slowly as he scrutinized the helmet. “I know my limits, doc. Fuel for the jetpack? Ordnance?”

"We can handle it." Mi’Ta nodded. “Within limits we can get anything you need. It may not be exactly what the system is supposed to take mind you…. Oh, and… When we are done, that set is yours.”

"What?" Gev froze. “Mi’Ta… The retail on a new set of mark seven Mandalmotors bounty hunter armor is sixty thousand… For a prototype mark nine…? There is literally no way I could pay you for this…”

"I know." Mi’Ta smiled. “What can I say? We like people owing us. And who knows, maybe we might need a favor someday. Something up your alley.”

Gev had to laugh at that, but then he focused on the armor again. He barely noticed when Mi’Ta left the room.

<Nearby>

Vorren was working on Olandas’ shivering form when Mi’Ta came in. Mi’ta stood and watched, but Vorren’s hands were gentle and professional as he bandaged her wounds. The Kolto dip had saved her life, but she was still very, very weak.

"Boss... Mi'ta?" The girl’s voice was quiet when she spoke. “What do I need to know for the cover story?”

"You were hurt." Mi’Ta spoke softly as well. “You were captured, possibly by the ones who had him. You were abused and violated and won’t talk to anyone but me about it.”

Olandas would have nodded, except Vorren caught her head in gentle hands and spoke in a soft but chiding voice. “Stop moving… If you tear anything, you will have to dip again, and we need you out now.”

"Right." Olandas looked at him. “I am good to go, sir.”

Vorren smiled at her, but it was melancholy. “Baloney. You can do desk work, and we need you to handle some signals intelligence one of the teams monitored. I need you to run traces on anything that might be connected to a Jedi named Michael Jonal. We may have caught a break, he seems to have sent a transmission that another team got a partial track on. If so, we know what hemisphere he is in now.”

"Boss..." Olandas nodded slowly and carefully. She looked Mi’Ta in the eye. “I…”

Mi’Ta sighed. “I am sorry Olandas, I was… That was too much.”

"It's okay." Olandas smiled wanly. “Not your fault. I knew you were dangerous. But it was marvelous.”

"Olandas..." Mi’Ta shook her head, exasperated. “You are crazy, girl.”

Vorren prepared a hypo and Olandas winced. “Do you have to? It feels so good…”

"Yes I do." Vorren shook his head. “You will feel good until the endorphins wear off, at which time you will hurt like nobody’s business. In all things there are limits Olandas. I need you clearheaded, not floating on a haze of endorphins.”

"So instead..." Olandas sighed and held out her arm. Her voice was sour. “I ride a haze of painkillers?”

Vorren smiled. “Trust me.”

That was such a ludicrous idea -to trust an agent of Imperial Intelligence- that Olandas burst out laughing. Vorren took her arm in a gentle grip, infused the drug and laid her arm back on the bed. Olandas’ voice was only slightly slurred when she spoke. “Yeah… right…” Both of the others grinned at her tone.

"You..." Vorren turned to Mi’Ta. “No funny business, clear? You have her desk ready for her. You are also set up for analyst work, you get her there and keep her there.” He patted Olandas on the shoulder, of the other few places on the tech’s body that wasn’t bruised or bandaged and then left.

Olandas stared after him. “Spoilsport.” When she looked back at Mi’Ta her face was pensive. “You are not the woman I first met, are you?”

"No." Mi’Ta shook her head. “That was a mask, I wear a lot of them.” Her voice was sad now.

"Pity." Olandas nodded carefully. “I liked you as the ice queen.”

“Well, you are crazy.” Mi’Ta grinned. She came to the bed side. “I will help you to the refresher and then we have a lot of work to do.” She reached down but froze as Olandas grabbed her arms and embraced her.

“It may not have been real for you, but it was real for me. And that is enough for me.” Olandas’ voice was low, but fierce. “And I do think it helped.”

"It did." Mi’Ta nodded. “Thank you.” She returned the embrace, careful not to squeeze any hurt parts.

Olandas looked at the Twi’Lek as Mi’Ta assisted the hurt woman to her feet. “Then… Would you mind… maybe… A future engagement?”

"Maybe." Mi’Ta shook her head. “But not until you are healed. We do it now, it would kill you.”

“But such a way to go…” Olandas leered at Mi’ta and both females smiled.
My stories in order:
Love, the Force, and Everything Discussion thread here

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kalenath
07.05.2012 , 01:07 PM | #9
Olandas was flagging. The sorely hurt tech had been working a solid five hours at her terminal, trying to make sense of signals intelligence that as a whole made no sense whatsoever. The Republic was incredibly lax on communications security in a number of ways. This made interception of data easy, but then finding the data one needed in the pile of nerf manure that resulted was difficult and time consuming. Data analysis was not physically stressful, but it was draining, sitting at a terminal and staring at records, com transcripts and other sundry things. The human was gamely trying to stay at her desk and keep working but Mi’Ta had been watching the girl out of the corner of her eye for a while. The Twi’Lek sighed.

“Olandas, time for a break.” Mi’Ta stood up slowly and walked to where the tech was working.

Olandas froze and stared at the medic of the team, her face worried. “I am almost there…” She turned back to the terminal, only to have Mi’Ta reach past her and shut the monitor down. “Hey!” She protested, but Mi’Ta was unmoved.

“Olandas, if you drive yourself crazy you do no one any good. Come on.” Mi’Ta took the tech’s arms in gentle but irresistible grips and lifted her easily from the chair she was in. Olandas knew better than to struggle as the Twi’lek set the tech on her feet.

“I found some…” Olandas broke off as Mi’Ta frowned at her.

“It can wait, come along.” Mi’Ta kept a hand on Olandas’ arm as she steered the tech to the main room of the safehouse.

“But I was…” Olandas protested but shut her mouth with a click as Mi’Ta glowered at her. She slumped and followed meekly as the Twi’lek opened the door for her and preceded her into the room. It was empty, both Vorren and Gev were out pursing leads, leaving the two of them. Olandas sat heavily in a chair as Mi’Ta started preparing food for them both. “I was so close. I am sure I found something this time…”

"Olandas..." Mi’Ta sighed. “And if you can’t see the screen for squinting? After you eat you sleep.”

"Geez, talk about overprotective..." Olandas sighed. “I know, I know, but… Look, if I tell you will you look into it? I know I am spent.”

Mi’Ta looked at the tech and then nodded slowly. She carried a tray to the small table that served as the team’s briefing room, mess hall and various other functions as needed. Small faded stains on the sides said that at least once the table had been used as a medical center. Or maybe for an interrogation. Trained eyes could pick out such details, no one else would likely notice them. She set the tray down and pulled her portion closer to her as she sat.

She looked at Olandas and then pointedly at the food and Olandas sighed and reached for the utensils. “Yes, Mother.” Olandas’ voice was tart as she started eating.

They ate in silence for several minutes, neither wasting any time. Food was fuel to both of them, good food was to be savored, but when on a mission, agents needed to remain focused. Distractions of any kind could prove deadly and food could be used as a distraction, matter of fact, it had been in the past. Meal times were a preferred time for agents to strike, or sneak in, while guards were distracted.

Mi’Ta finished her meal first and watched as Olandas finished off hers. The girl was brave, tough and capable, but Mi’Ta had hurt the girl very badly. She thanked her ancestors that she had noted the signs of internal bleeding before it had become critical, but Olandas was a long way from being recovered. Olandas finished her meal and nodded as she pushed the bowl away.

"Mi'ta, this is important." The tech’s voice was soft. “The burst transmission that the other team picked up used Jedi codes all right. They are a royal pain, I have looked at them before.”

"Yeah." Mi’Ta nodded. That was one reason she had been selected by Vorren. “Say what you will about the Jedi, they are not stupid, most of the time anyway. Have you got anything?”

"Maybe." Olandas puffed her cheeks and nodded slowly. “I have deciphered about a quarter of it. It is definitely a report from a Jedi, but he is using code words.”

"Gah!" Mi’Ta groaned. “Of all the lousy luck, a Jedi who knows tradecraft…”

"Yeah." Olandas nodded, a sour expression on her face. Codes and ciphers were hard to crack as it was. But when the sender of the message used code words, words that meant nothing to anyone except the recipient of the message… things got really messy. “It is really weird. Whoever it is started by saying ‘Honey I am home’, probably a reassurance or something. Maybe an acknowledgement? I don’t know. The other part I managed to decode was something about ‘Dogs and cats living together’. Do you have any idea what that might mean?”

"Actually I do..." Mi’Ta blinked, her face thoughtful. “Old holo-movie quote. The actual quote is ‘Dogs and cats living together, mass hysteria’… Hmmm…” She thought hard for a moment. Then she smiled a bit savagely. “How would his superiors likely react if he told them he was hiding a Sith here on planet?”

"Not well..." Olandas blinked and then she grinned as well. “Not well at all. He won’t tell them.”

"Maybe... but.. No." Mi’Ta shook her head. “We can’t assume that. But if he is hiding her from us, then likely he won’t have been able to contact his superiors in the Jedi Council either. I hope not at least, I do not want to face a dozen Jedi here.”

Olandas nodded soberly. “I can get the rest of it…” She broke off as Mi’Ta glowered at her. “Look, I feel better…”

"No." Mi’Ta shook her head. “You are going back to your room and going to sleep if I have to sedate you, clear?”

Olandas pouted. “Meanie.” But she was grinning. “Will you spank me if I don’t?”

"Olandas… enough." Mi’Ta shook her head. “You are in NO shape for it right now. Tomorrow. Tomorrow I will give you something special.”

"Ok..." Olandas sighed, but then smiled. “Something to look forward to. Oh, I think narrowed down the transmission site. It was definitely not in Coronet, despite the multiple loops.”

"No." Mi’Ta shook her head. “Olandas… Stop.”

“But…” Olandas broke off, her face confused. “Oh you rat…” She slumped in her chair as the drug Mi’Ta had put in her food worked its magic. Mi’Ta stepped to her and lifted the girl into her arms carefully.

Mi’Ta’s voice was kind as she hefted the girl and started towards the room they had set up for Olandas. “You will rest, even if I have to keep knocking you out. But I do promise you will enjoy what I have planned for tomorrow. Well, part of you will.” Her grin was decidedly evil as she entered Olandas’ room and laid the slumbering girl on the bed. A quick check of the girl’s injuries and then, Mi’Ta pulled the tech’s boots off and covered her with a sheet. The Twi’lek’s expression changed to one of tenderness as she pushed a stray lock of the tech’s short cropped hair out of her face. “Rest well…”

Mi’Ta sighed as she walked back into the workroom and nodded to the droid. “R6 Beta… Call up what Olandas was working on please to my terminal. Let me see what I can make of it.” The droid beeped an acknowledgement from where it was hooked into the small but powerful computer system and her terminal lit up. She sat and sighed as she scrutinized the readout. This might be a long day.
My stories in order:
Love, the Force, and Everything Discussion thread here

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kalenath
07.05.2012 , 01:12 PM | #10
Olandas shook her head. This was not what she had expected, but hey, she was adaptable.

"Olandas?" Mi’Ta smiled at the girl as she finished the connections. “You ready?”

"I... think... so..." Olandas looked at herself. The sensor leads that Mi’Ta had just finished attaching were everywhere. Head, chest, abdomen, arms and legs, every appendage had wires coming off it. She was restrained to her bed, nothing but her head could move. The restraints were padded, soft almost but she doubted she would need them, she was still very, very weak. “I don’t understand. What are you going to do?”

"Hey!" Mi’ta grinned. “It is a surprise.” But then her face fell. “I don’t want to hurt you worse, just cause pain as odd as that sounds.”

"Mi'ta..." Olandas sighed. “It wasn’t your fault. I knew when I volunteered that you would hurt me.”

"No." Mi’Ta snarled. ‘I didn’t hurt you, girl. I very nearly killed you. Now look… I am very uncomfortable with physically hurting you again. You are simply not strong enough to survive it. So this will work.”

"What will?" Olandas snarled right back. “Make sense Mi’Ta!”

Instead of answering, Mi’Ta took Olandas’ head in gentle hands and held it down on the pillow. One hand held it in place while the other pulled a strap across her forehead. It too was padded. Olandas watched as Mi’Ta pulled the strap tight and then stepped back.

"Olandas." Mi’Ta’s voice was soft now. “Physically, I can’t hurt you. But this won’t be physical. It will all be in your mind. Close your eyes.”

Olandas stared at the Twi’lek for a moment before complying. Then something covered them and she couldn’t bit back a whimper as something else entered her right ear. It felt warm and soft however, and all it did was block out all sound. Then she smiled slightly, that was the idea. Sensory deprivation then, she could handle that. She relaxed as the feeling was repeated in her other ear. A gentle touch stroked her jaw and then she felt something in her mouth, it too was soft but she could breathe through it easily. Something padded and gentle but irresistible went around her head as it locked her mouth shut on whatever was in it. She waited in darkness, not hearing anything for a time, it could have been moments or hours. Then she felt something. Her nose was clamped shut on something hard, maybe a tube. For a moment, she panicked, thinking that she was going to suffocate, but the gentle touch was back on her forehead and she relaxed as she realized she could breathe through whatever was in her nose, and now, something was flowing through the tube, something clean and pure. Oxygen probably.

It was very peaceful, just lying there, not having to do anything. She was nearly nodding off when the gentle touch came again, this time on her arm. The bandages had come off today, another dip in the Kolto tank had healed most of her surface injuries, and she had actually been hoping that Mi’Ta would… She froze as she felt something wet on her arm, something sticky. It wiped her arm all over the elbow. Alcohol maybe? But why? Modern antiseptics did not need to… She blinked her unseeing eyes and smiled around what was in her mouth. Modern medical gear sterilized automatically as a matter of course, but ancient medical gear did not. Sure enough, she felt a small pain in her arm. A needle, and then pressure as whatever was in the needle worked its way through her skin into her veins. Suddenly, her body relaxed. She could still feel, but her body wouldn’t move at all.

By all rights, she should have been terrified, but she wasn’t. She was feeling something far different. Anticipation was building exponentially. Mi’Ta had been so closemouthed and so careful to keep from hurting her again, and this was for the same reason. A muscle relaxant probably, to keep her from hurting herself whenever Mi’Ta did what she was going to do.

She was so relaxed, she almost didn’t feel it at first. The small tingling, it felt like… She blinked and then smiled widely as the electric current flowed through her body. She couldn’t have screamed if she had wanted to. And if she had been able to, her screams would not have been pain, but ecstasy.

Mi’Ta watched as the droid applied gentle pressure with the electric prod. Imperial Intelligence droids were definitely not standard issue, and R6 Beta was not standard even for Imperial Intelligence droids. Mi’Ta had never been fully comfortable with droids, they were a fact of life, especially in the republic, but they had always creeped her a bit out. And now, she was more than a bit creeped out as R6 worked. She had worked with the droid to create this special protocol, specifically to keep Olandas happy. They needed the tech. And she truly did enjoy causing pain, but this called for a miner, more delicate touch than she had with the shockstick. She watched as R6 pulled back from the sole of Olandas’ foot again and shivered slightly. But one look at the expression on Olandas’ face had Mi’Ta smiling.

"Ok R6." The Twi’lek looked at her chrono and spoke to the droid. “Twenty minutes, then a break for ten, then twenty more and I will be back to release her. If anything odd happens, page me immediately. Clear?”

The droid beeped an acknowledgement. Mi’Ta, with a last look at Olandas, resolutely turned and left the room. She was getting close to a breakthrough on that transmission cipher, she thought. But then she had to figure out what it meant. What she had so far deciphered made no sense at all. As she sat at her desk, she smiled back the way she had come. Olandas was a treasure, but so fragile as to be nearly untouchable. Then her gaze was pulled to her console and the blinking message there.

“What the…?” She stared at the message, trying very hard not to curse aloud for fear of being recorded by the cameras and mikes that covered the house. “How the hell…?”

There was a simple message on the screen, a time and place. She checked her sensors, but they showed nothing. The camera logs showed nothing at all. Someone had hacked into her system, so cleanly that they had left no traces at all. She looked at the time and blinked, less than two hours and to an area that was in the search grid she and Vorren had put together from what information they had. He was there now, canvassing, searching, trying with all his might to find a Korriban needle in a Correllian haystack. She keyed her com.

“Vorren.” The agent’s voice was calm, but held fatigue as well as frustration under the surface.

“Did you set up a meet with me?” Mi’Ta really hoped he had, he had access, he could have done it without anyone seeing or hearing.

“What? No…” Vorren’s voice was startled and Mi’Ta’s heart plummeted.

"Boss..." Mi’Ta shook her head. “I am looking at a message, on my secure terminal. To meet in an hour and a half, in a mall smack dab in the middle of our search grid.”

“From?” Vorren asked carefully.

"I don't know." Mi’Ta shook her head. ”Doesn’t say. Vorren, we are compromised again…”

"Maybe." Now the agent’s voice was thoughtful. “Maybe not. Can you make the meet?”

"In this traffic?" Mi’Ta snorted. “I can be there in twenty minutes. Without breaking the airspeeder laws.”

"Huh?" Vorren’s voice was confused now. “Why would they give you so long…?”

"Oh my..." Mi’Ta felt a rush of fear. “Olandas… Whoever it was watched me work on Olandas, they gave me time to get her situated. Son of a…”

"Mi'ta!" Vorren’s voice was sharp now. “Focus, Mi’Ta. Get Olandas settled and asleep, and then make the meet. Give me the coordinates, I will be somewhere nearby.”

"Boss..." Mi’ta froze. “Something about that feels.. I don’t know, feels wrong, Vorren. Like… Oh I don’t know…”

"Right." Vorren’s voice was focused now. “Mi’Ta, I am not going to leave you hanging out there for the Nexu. Give me the coordinates.” Now his voice held command and she complied. Vorren sighed. “I am in the area, and Olut is as well.”

"Olut?" Mi’Ta blinked. “Can we trust him?”

Vorren snorted. “Do we have a choice?”

"Right." Mi’Ta heaved a deep sigh. “Understood. I hope I don’t see you there.” If Vorren had to show himself, it meant bad things were happening.

Vorren’s voice was quiet. “Me too…”
My stories in order:
Love, the Force, and Everything Discussion thread here