The Reckoning

18 years after the Battle of Yavin...
A divergent, persistent and interactive Star Wars timeline with a rich history and established characters.

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The Reckoning

Post by Pryde » Tue Apr 08, 2014 2:23 pm

"Felicity!"

The loud cry jarred the girl awake and in her frantic state she tipped her chair on accident and fell backwards onto the floor. Glancing up from the floor she saw Jade Kitana, one of the Jedi librarians walking up to her with her hand on her forehead. "Yes," she asked sheepishly.

Jade shook her head. "You're supposed to be studying not sleeping."

Felicity pulled herself off the floor and picked up her chair. "I'm sorry, Jade, but--,"

"Master," Jade interrupted her.

"Master," Felicity corrected herself, pushing her chair in front of the desk again, "but this book is boring. I don't understand why reading about the political state of the Galactic Republic pre-Civil War is so important. I want to read about the Clone Wars."

"History isn't boring, Felicity, and it's important for you and the others to learn about the events leading up to the war so that future generations may learn from our mistakes."

Felicity was half tempted to point out that Jade was far too young to have made any of those mistakes but she wisely kept her mouth shut. "Okay, fine but isn't there like a holo movie or something I can watch instead? My eyes get heavy when I read."

"Felicity, you need to learn discipline. Many of history's greatest warriors were avid readers. There's much you can learn from a book."

Felicity sighed and sat back down in her chair. It was clear to her now that she was not going to win this conversation. Jade was a huge proponent of the importance of books. There really was no point in arguing with her over it so she just went back to scouring the text looking for where she left off. Satisfied that the girl was studying again Jade turned and started to walk away. That's when she noticed something peculiar, an Antarian Ranger sitting at an isolated terminal some distance away. There were two more Antarian Rangers standing nearby and they seemed somewhat agitated by something. Curious Jade walked over to the one who was sitting down.

"Is there something I can help you with," she asked him.

"No," the man replied, not even bothering to look up from his terminal. Jade tried to get a look at the screen but the ranger shifted his body to block her view.

"Excuse me, but if there's something going on here--," she started but a firm hand on her shoulder stopped her.

"We're fine," a gruff voice said behind her, "now walk away."

Jade felt the warning of his tone and the tightening of his hand on her shoulder. She slowly reached for her lightsaber when she felt the muzzle of a blasterrifle against her back. "I said walk away," the man told her in a low growl.

Jade felt the tightening of her throat and the sense of cold fear rising up within her. Her hand hesitated halfway to her lightsaber as she tried to work out who was faster, the Force or his trigger finger. Luckily she didn't have to find out when all of a sudden a datapad flew out of nowhere and struck the man against the head. He staggered to the side as Felicity came running up to them and Jade quickly spun and drew her lightsaber. The cerulean blade of pure energy sprung to life and she confronted the three impostors.

"Who are you," she demanded.

In response the two rangers standing guard drew their rifles and fired at Felicity. Jade reacted fast and scooped up the girl mid stride and pulled her behind the relative safety of a bank of data terminals. "What are you doing," she demanded.

"I'm trying to help," Felicity said.

"If you want to help then go inform the Council. They need to know we have intruders in the Archives."

"But...,"

"No 'buts', Felicity, do as I say!"

The girl gave her a pained look but eventually got up and headed for the door. Meanwhile the three rangers were still crowded around the computer terminal when one of them said, "Got it."

He downloaded something onto a data chit and then stuck it in his pocket. The other two were set to leave when Jade suddenly descended upon them from behind. The first ranger didn't stand a chance, Jade had sliced his weapon in half and cut him down before he could even react. The other two were not so unfortunate. One fired a salvo of blaster bolts at her before suddenly finding himself relieved of his weapon with a tug from the Force. The second seemed unfazed by the advancing Jedi and stood his ground.

He had no weapons that she could see but his confidence bespoke of a man who was not entirely defenseless. "Stop the girl," he said finally and the man beside him suddenly leapt into the air reaching an impossible height. He landed in front of Felicity with a lightsaber in his hand just before she could reach the exit and the girl skidded to a halt.

"Felicity," Jade shouted as the impostor ranger raised his saber to strike. She didn't get to see what happened, however, as something came crashing down on top of her. The leader of the trio had thrown his lightsaber at a light fixture hanging down from the ceiling. Pieces of the light landed on top of her and knocked her out cold.

Near the door Felicity had back flipped out of harm's way in order to avoid being cut in half then she lowered herself into a fighting stance. She didn't have a lightsaber with her but she was still trained in the Sage family martial art. She was just about to attack when an invisible force suddenly picked her up and threw her into the far wall. She hit hard and crumbled to the floor in a heap as the lead impostor turned to the other.

"Let's go," he said and then the two were gone, leaving mere moments before temple security arrived on the scene...

Felicity's vision swam and she tried to get up to give chase but ended up only crumbling to the floor again soon after. The last thing she remembered seeing were two figures rushing over to check on her before she blacked out...

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Re: The Reckoning

Post by Archangel » Tue Apr 08, 2014 4:22 pm

Feldar T'kappi had decided that the best thing for him to do was study and learn. Most Jedi, he knew, studied lightsaber forms; he studied books. Most Jedi, he knew, learned from their masters; he had none. In the convalescence of the Order since the attack on Onderon, his lack of teacher was likely an oversight. The Jedi had many pupils, few masters, and fewer still who had the time to take on a Padawan. Feldar, for his part, was neither jealous nor frustrated. He had learned, since his failings during the battle at Onderon, that tranquility was the way of the Jedi; peace was the method best suited to success. Arrogance, violence, selfishness - these were not the Jedi way. And so he did not press for a master, and he did not complain about his standing. He strove always to be content with where he was, and to accept whatever the Force laid upon him to do.

It was not, of course, that he did not want a master. As a Chadra-Fan, Feldar despised being alone. Loneliness had a physical effect on his well-being; the more time he was alone, the faster he would deteriorate. Given enough time, he could even die from loneliness. But he knew that the Order was not in a position to tailor its practices to the peculiarities of his species; there were many peoples of many types in the Order, and he was not special. He had heard of the special ones - Akain Karna, Caitlyn DeVries, Renato Farani, Tone Krellisk, and others, who were put into the field as Padawans, and often proved themselves more capable than some Knights. Feldar was not that kind of Jedi; he was not a hero, not a champion of combat or a rescuer of the oppressed. His was the contemplative life; as long as he had the Force and the Temple around him, he was never truly alone, and he was always ready to serve the Force.

Of course, he took his physical shortcomings as a personal challenge. If loneliness could kill him, then loneliness was an enemy against whom he needed practice. Opposing every urge in his weak flesh, he entered into loneliness to meditate; he sought out time apart, and he strove daily to conquer it. That was why, when he spent time in the library, he did so in a sequestered cubicle, far from the hustle and bustle of the aisles and entryway.

He especially enjoyed reading. He read the histories - ancient Jedi and Sith wars, the Old Republic in its heyday, and its stagnation, the Clone Wars, the rise of the Galactic Empire - they delighted him. He read technical journals and instruction manuals - if there was a document in the Jedi library about how to build, dismantle, or repair something, he had read it at least once. He read diplomatic treatises - he knew that he could not fight, but as a Jedi, he would be required to resolve conflicts; how else would he do it except by diplomacy?

A disturbance - Feldar was not sure whether he felt it in the Force or heard it with his keen ears first - drew his attention away from Senator Kayl's Treatise on the Delicate Balance of Diplomatic Relations. Rising from his seat, he wandered out into the open, where he watched an altercation between two human females and several men dressed as Antarian Rangers. Feldar sensed very strange things from the Rangers; he did not think they were Rangers at all. Suddenly, blasters came out and lightsabers sprang to life. The black-haired human female ran for the exit, but was stopped by one of the Rangers - who had leapt over to her like a Jedi! Feldar squeaked in concern now, but no one heard him; the exit was blocked, and he did not have his lightsaber. The little Chadra-Fan did not know what to do.

The fight was over almost before it began. One Ranger was felled, but the other two escaped; the human females were incapacitated. Feldar, finally making a decisive gesture, rushed over to help them. He saw Temple security guards arrive; several rushed over to the red-haired female, so Feldar joined the one standing over the black-haired one. He squeaked in his native tongue first, then chided himself - like most humans, this one probably did not speak his language. He repeated in Basic, "Are your injuries severe?" He knelt beside her, unsure of what to do. With his bionic arm, he cradled her head, trying to determine the full extent of her injuries; she might have a concussion, he concluded, but nothing looked life-threatening. The Temple security guard, satisfied that she was not on the brink of death, moved on to secure the area.

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Re: The Reckoning

Post by Mir » Wed Apr 09, 2014 7:37 am

Unease. That was the feeling that had been in his stomach this entire time. Sindria wasn’t that far from Ossus, but the only visitors that he’d ever gotten in his Council imposed reassignment was the woman who had been the starting point for all of the problems, and her new apprentice apparent. The AgriCorps members who were there had treated him with contempt and he couldn’t blame them. Though his decision had been based in morals and ethics, it had gone against the Jedi Code and the wishes of the Council. He understood that. But it hadn’t made taking the punishment any easier. Especially when that punishment had come, in part, from his own father. Therein lied the crux of the problem with returning to Ossus.

To file his report and see what his next assignment would be. They had done good work on Sindria, setting up the moisturizers and the vapor collectors. Time would tell if the project bore fruit, and hopefully the Vahla would maintain the work that the AgriCorps had done. He didn’t have high hopes, but the fact was that they had found success. He still wasn’t sure what to attribute that success to. He desperately wanted it to be the will of the Force. Maybe that was what he was looking for. Validation that he could still achieve greatness within the Jedi Order. It wasn’t blind ambition that powered him, that drove him. No, if anything it was a desire to do his father proud, to do his family proud.

Certh Kol-Rekali walked through the halls of the Jedi Temple on Ossus a stranger, though he had only been gone for months, a span of time far shorter than the years that had been projected. It was strange to walk through the halls of a building that you had helped construct and feel like a foreigner. But that was how Certh felt, as if he was a newcomer to the Temple and walking through it for the first time. He knew where everything was, and many of the faces were the same, but the atmosphere was different. Times had changed in a few months.

Makaera Tor had seen to that.

His journey was serpentine, traversing the floors of the Temple, ignoring the pointed looks from those who remembered him, and reveling, partially, in the blank looks of those who didn’t. He was about to reach his old quarters, when he took a wrong turn and found himself face to face with one of the people who had sent him on his reassignment.

Silence passed between the two, and one of the men raised an eyebrow.

“Certh.” Ember said.

“Dad.” Certh replied, the sense of unease going.

“I looked over the AgriCorps report.” He said. “You accomplished a lot in your time on Sindria.” Ember said, and left it at that.

“I…I did.” Certh replied, at a loss for words. He had thought about this conversation for some time now, and had hoped that it would never come to pass. At least, not for a few more months. Or years, whichever was more convenient. How do you talk to your father, when you know that you’ve let him down? “How is everything?” He asked.

“Galaxy’s gone to pot, as it usually does.” Ember said. “The Grandmaster solved the interesting diplomatic issue of Halla and Ashin trying to kill each other.” He said.

“I heard.” Certh replied, nodding. “I was wondering if I would receive another assignment for the AgriCorps.” He said and let the rest of the thought hang, unfinished.

“I’m sure that there will be something.” Ember said. “If you’ll excuse me, I have a wayward Jedi to meet.” He said, and started to walk past his son.

Ember made it a few more paces, before he turned to look at his son. Certh was still standing there; his head lowered now, the body language completely changed. The Jedi Master wanted to reach out and enfold his son in a hug. No matter what Certh had done, he would always be his son, and he would always love him. Rach had done things, and though Ember had wished to punish Rach, it hadn’t meant that he had loved his son any less. Sometimes the price of parentage was far more difficult than the price of the Force.

“Dad?” Certh asked, still unturned. He’d realized that Ember hadn’t continued onwards.

“Yes, Certh.”

“I’m…I’m sorry.” Certh said, turning around. His eyes were brimming with tears, and all Ember could see was his little boy, who had just scraped a knee on the Singing Justice, playing with Benna, when he was supposed to be studying. A sense of relief washed over Certh, when his father reached out and grabbed him in a tight hug. “I’m so sorry.” Certh said, his voice muffled against the chest of the strongest man he knew. His father, the greatest example of a Jedi he’d ever had, short of his mother.

“I know.” Ember said. “I know.”

“I thought I was doing what was right, what was necessary.” He said. “Mahana and the others, they were so full of righteous anger and rhetoric and…No, I shouldn’t blame them.” He said. “In the end it was my decision and my decision only.” Certh said.

“Certh, the path that you’ve chosen isn’t the path that I wanted for you. That’s not something that upsets me, it only reinforces the fact that I’m a father.” Ember said. “You’ve got to make this good.” He said. “There’s only so much that I can do for you, anymore. You’re a grown man, you have to make your own decisions, but you need to always remember what your mother and I taught you.” Ember said.

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

Who he was. That was a question. That was the question. It had been the one that he had been trying to answer when he had been on Sindria, and though he wasn’t sure that he’d found the answer, Certh was happier with the somewhat certainties that he’d gained, than the doubts that he’d had when he’d first come to the planet. He didn’t know how much time he was going to spend on Ossus, but he did know that he was going to make the most of it. The first thing that he wanted to do was to go the Jedi Library. A strange thought, but it was the one that Certh had.

He had entered the rooms of the library when Jade Kitana had confronted the would be Antarian Rangers. The commotion was far from him, in the distance, but Certh leapt into action. Unfortunately due to the distance, he was unable to reach in time to accomplish anything, though he was able to see the remaining two Antarian Rangers leave the area.

Their mannerisms were wrong. Not to the untrained eye, but to Certh, who knew the Rangers well, there were small tells here and there.

Something was going on. But at the moment, that didn’t matter. What mattered was that a Jedi was injured. He crouched next to the Chadra-Fan, whom he didn’t recognize. The injured girl he did however. There were only a few big families of Jedi in the Order. This girl was part of one of them.

“Felicity Sage.” Certh said. Looking at the Chadra-Fan, he spoke again. “We should get her to the healers, they can ensure that there’s no permanent damage.” He added.

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Re: The Reckoning

Post by Archangel » Wed Apr 09, 2014 10:32 am

Feldar nodded, and together, the two of them gathered the girl up into Certh's arms. Feldar was too small to be of much help, carrying a girl to the healers. He said hurriedly, "She was disoriented after the fight. She might have a concussion." Feldar's knowledge of medicine was limited, especially when it came to the anatomy of other species; he hoped that the girl would be alright. Once the human had the girl in his arms, Feldar backed up; he would only be in the way if he accompanied them to the medical center.

Instead, the Chadra-Fan turned and went to the side of the other Jedi, the red-haired female. The security guards were rousing her; she had a bump on the head, but she seemed to be coming around. Several of the guards seemed anxious that they were not trying to stop the intruders; Feldar waved them away, to tend to their duties. One stayed behind. Feldar pulled the woman to a sitting position and tried to get her attention. "Master?" he squeaked, "Are you alright?"

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Re: The Reckoning

Post by Pryde » Wed Apr 09, 2014 12:27 pm

"I'm fine," Jade assured him, "Surprisingly."

Then a thought occurred to her and she frantically looked around for Felicity. "Where's Felicity," she asked, a note of worry in her tone.

"She's fine," Feldar told her, "She might have a concussion. Someone is bringing her to the infirmary right now."

Jade felt a wave of relief wash over her. She dreaded the thought of what she would have to say to Maximillian Sage if she had let his apprentice die. Carefully she got to her feet and dusted herself off. The archives were a mess, blaster scorch marks littered several data banks, there was the fallen light fixture and Felicity had knocked over a stack of holo disks when she was thrown into the wall. It was all going to have to be cleaned up, of course, but she wouldn't have the time to do it now. Two young paramedics stepped forward and addressed Jade.

"Excuse me," one of them said, "but we should get you checked out."

"Yes, of course," Jade replied and she followed the first one out while the second turned to Feldar.

"Are you injured anywhere," he asked. Feldar shook his head. "Very well," the man replied then he turned and followed the Jedi Knight and her escort.

A short while later Felicity awoke to find herself in the infirmary. She spent a good while asking whether Jade was alright and if she could see her but all she got were simple assurances and a whole lot of fussing over her condition that lasted nearly an hour. Finally, the nurses decided she was unhurt and free to go and the first thing she did was visit Jade... Well, not before stopping momentarily to talk with the boy outside her room. She had skidded to a halt when she saw him, Certh Rekali, she didn't know much about him but one of the nurses had mentioned he was the one that dropped her off.

"You're the one who brought me here," she said to him, the boy nodded. "Thank you."

"You're welcome," the boy replied with a slight bow.

"Do you know where they took Ja--Er, Master Kitana?"

The boy thought about it a moment then pointed. "I think they brought her in over there, but--wait," he cried suddenly when she took off but Felicity was in too much of a hurry. With a shrug he simply followed in her foot steps, coming around the corner just in time to see Felicity nearly knock over a nurse as she burst into Kitana's room.

"Are you alright," she asked.

Jade smiled and nodded. "I'm glad to see you are as well," she said, "but you may want to slow down. Master Chirushk will put you right back to bed if you knock down anymore nurses."

Felicity felt her cheeks redden at her gentle chastisement but she ignored it. "Who were those guys?"

"I don't know, but they were well trained and strong in the Force. Master Ward has been keeping me abreast of the investigation in the archives, it seems those three killed several Antarian Rangers and stole their uniforms in order to sneak into the temple."

"But why? What were they after?"

Jade shrugged and the motion sent a sharp lance of pain through her shoulders. "I don't know," she said, ignoring the pain, "The file they stole contained historical accounts of the Jedi Civil War. Master Ward has had investigators pouring over the document but so far they have found nothing that would seem to make the information valuable. It's all dated references to things that have happened thousands of years ago. Master Ward and the others are still investigating but so far the theft hasn't been labeled a priority."

That didn't make any sense. "Why not? They killed three people and broke into the temple to steal information."

"Information that isn't vital, Felicity. We're not going to just let them go but right now there are other concerns. I've heard people talking about an attack on the temple and there were some strange happenings in the hangar. Something's going on and it's got the Masters on edge. The loss of some historical documents just doesn't seem all that important right now."

That didn't sit well with Felicity. It sounded like the Masters were just giving up and letting them go even after they had killed three people. "Can I see the file they stole," she asked, "I want to help."

Jade shook her head. "The archives are closed right now to anyone but Master Ward and the investigation team. They're not going to let you in."

Felicity grumbled something under her breath then turned and left the room. Jade glanced up from her fleeing form to the boy who was standing near the door. "Certh," she said, "I don't know how well you know Felicity Sage but I do know that you understand what it's like to make mistakes. Watch her for me, she means well but she's impulsive. I fear she'll try to do something rash."

**********

Meanwhile Felicity had taken to wandering the halls of the temple in thought. With everything that had happened today none of it seemed to make any sense. Three Force trained individuals murder a squad of Antarian Rangers and steal their uniforms to sneak into the temple all to steal, what? An ancient recollection about a war that happened over three thousand years ago? It just didn't make any sense. Why was it so important? Just what was in that document? She needed to see the file but she couldn't hack into the archives from the outside, she didn't have the skill. She needed someone who could... She stopped suddenly when her gaze caught the form of the Chadra-Fan who had come to her rescue. She didn't know much about him but apparently he had a mechanical arm that he built himself. Maybe he could help her access the archive.

She quickly ran up to him. "Hey, can I ask you a favor," she asked him, "I need help with something kind of important."

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Re: The Reckoning

Post by Archangel » Wed Apr 09, 2014 12:59 pm

When they had closed off the archives for the investigation and taken a statement from Feldar about what he had seen, they had shut him out, too. The Chadra-Fan was left to wander the halls, searching for ways to help. It frustrated him that he had been left out; he could have helped, he knew, with the mechanical side of things. He was not a slicer, but he knew his way around a terminal; or he could have been sent to investigate the spaceport, perhaps discover where the intruders had come from. He heard from someone that the investigation was not of the highest priority, but that made Feldar want to help all the more. High priority missions went to Jedi Knights, or Masters who had Padawans to help them, or Council members. This--this, Feldar could help with. The little Jedi was a perfect fit for a low-priority mission involving a computer terminal. Why leave him out of it?

As he stalked the hall between the archives and the medical center, the black-haired girl - the one who had been part of the fight in the library - approached him. Feldar tried to look at her eyes, but he kept being distracted by her pink, wrinkly skin. Humans were pleasant enough, but they were such ugly creatures. No wonder they had been wearing clothes since they first crawled out of the mud. The female wanted a favor - she wanted his help! Delighted, he forgot her hairless wrinkles and answered, "What do you need?"

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Re: The Reckoning

Post by Pryde » Wed Apr 09, 2014 3:09 pm

Felicity glanced up and down the hallway then gently urged Feldar over into a small alcove out of the way of everyone. "I need help getting into the archive... From a computer," she added when she saw his eyes widen, "The Masters said the investigation isn't a priority but something just doesn't feel right. I want to look at the file they stole but Master Ward and the investigation team aren't letting anyone else in. Can you hack into the archive database and find that file? I really think that there's something in there that they're missing."

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Re: The Reckoning

Post by Archangel » Wed Apr 09, 2014 7:54 pm

Feldar was startled by the request. Slice into the archive database during an active investigation? He wanted to help, but he was not sure this was the way. He suddenly regretted his offer. "If they stole the file," he said, quibbling, "why would they have left any copies? Wouldn't they want to leave us in the dark about the contents of the file they stole?"

He paused. He was torn between his duty to the Order, which demanded that he avoid illicit activities, like slicing into the archive, and his earnest desire to help in a time of crisis. Especially this crisis. One way or another, he sensed that he was supposed to be on this mission. In the end, that side won out. "Do you know anything about the file? The subject matter? I've spent a lot of time in the archives; perhaps I'll remember something. Whether I do or not, the more we can narrow down the search, the less time I'll need in the system. I don't have a lot of standing here; the last thing I want is to be kicked out of the Order for something they're not deeming as important."

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Re: The Reckoning

Post by Pryde » Thu Apr 10, 2014 2:23 am

"That's just it," Felicity said, "Jade told me the only thing they stole were some historical documents about the Jedi Civil War. That's why it doesn't make any sense. They didn't steal anything important and they probably could have gotten that information anywhere so why come here?"

She stopped suddenly when a Jedi acolyte walking by passed a little too close to them and then she pulled Feldar even closer, speaking to him in hushed tones. "I just need one little peek at the document, please. It's important. If we get into trouble I'll just say I forced you."

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Re: The Reckoning

Post by Archangel » Thu Apr 10, 2014 6:29 pm

The Jedi Civil War. That was one of Feldar's favorite parts of the Order's history, and certainly one he had grown very familiar with since he started spending all of his time in the library. He smiled, but without much mirth, and nodded. "I think I can work with that," he answered.

Trying to look casual, and probably doing a lousy job of it, Feldar led the way to a nearby terminal. He settled in and began to type commands into the system. Although he was only an amateur slicer, his cybernetic arm let him work more quickly and accurately than someone purely limited by biology; his mechanical fingers flew across the keypad with startling alacrity. After about a minute, he had connected this terminal - which was associated with the medical disbursal system - to the library system, through the Temple's intranet. That had been the easy part; computer security had not been designed to protect against internal connections, which would generally be benign.

His bigger problem, he knew, was that the Jedi investigating this issue would be keeping a close eye on access logs, hoping to catch the criminals in another attempt. This was especially likely if they considered the missing files to be of low value; perhaps, they would think, the criminals stole the wrong files, and would try to slice in to get the correct ones. All of that left Feldar with very little time. His memory of the system served him well, and he went straight to the historical data files from the Jedi Civil War, almost four thousand years earlier. He had always been pleased by the quality of records from that time, but he knew that many of them were reconstructed; the Republic and the Jedi Order had suffered greatly in the centuries that followed Darth Revan's betrayal.

He was surprised to find that no files were missing from the archive, so he switched to access logs. Most of the files had been opened recently, but only a few had been copied. Feldar opened them; they displayed on the screen, each in its own space. They were star-charts. Feldar was baffled. "Why would they need star charts?" he asked, "What is on these that would not be on publicly available charts?"

Felicity glanced over the charts, initially she didn't see anything out of place. They were just star charts, though the star formations and planets shown on each had very little if anything to do with the rest of the document. For a moment she wondered why these charts were even in the file at all and then she noticed something. A pattern of sorts, it was visible on all five charts, they each displayed different locations but it looked like they somehow fit together. "Wait," she said, "can you overlay all these charts? It looks like they overlap."

Feldar tapped a few keys, and the terminal obeyed, laying all five of the maps over one another. Then Feldar remembered, and almost slapped himself. "Of course!" he squeaked, "These are the star-charts that Darth Revan used to find the ancient Star Forge! It was how he built up his empire!"

Felicity snapped her fingers. That had to be it, she was sure it. "That must be what they're after!" she said, "They're probably trying to build up their own forces!"

Feldar frowned as he stared at the charts, remembering his readings. "But," he said hesitantly, "the Star Forge was destroyed. What good would it be now?"

Felicity's expression shifted into a frown. She hadn't counted on the Forge being destroyed, but still there was something about these charts. They had to come here specifically to steal them so there must be a reason. She didn't have much time to think about it, however, as security forces pounded on the door to the small office. "Hey!" one of them shouted, "Open up in there!"

As if it would help, Feldar hastily tried to disconnect the terminal and shut it down before they got in...

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Re: The Reckoning

Post by Pryde » Fri Apr 11, 2014 9:02 am

Felicity and Feldar found themselves sitting in a small room. The security guards who brought them in hadn't said who they were meeting or what they would do with them and it had both of them a little on edge, though maybe Feldar more than Felicity. It was awhile before the door to the room finally slid open and Jedi Master Faye Ward entered. She crossed over to the table in front of them as the door closed behind her and then took a seat, glancing at each of them in turn.

"Would you like to tell me why, Padawan T'Kappi, you were hacking into the Jedi Archives from an unauthorized terminal during an official investigation," she asked.

"We were just trying to help," Felicity blurted out.

Faye silenced her with a look. "You may speak when it is your turn, Padawan Sage, right now I am addressing Padawan T'Kappi."

The Chadra-Fan seemed nervous and he took a moment to compose himself before speaking. "It's just as she said," he told her, "We were just trying to help."

Faye leaned back in her chair and gave him a look that suggested they were in far more trouble than either of them realized. "You realize that hacking into the Jedi Archives is grounds for expulsion," she said and Feldar's eyes visibly widened.

"Don't punish Feldar," Felicity interjected, "I made him do it, it was all my fault."

"That's admirable, Padawan Sage, but I highly doubt you held a lightsaber to his throat. You two are both equally accountable for your actions."

"But we know why the thieves were here!"

"Really," Faye asked, "and what pray tell is that?"

"They're after the Star Forge, the one Revan destroyed."

Faye stared at her for a long time before speaking. "The Star Forge is a ruin, Padawan Sage. It's been excavated and torn apart by Jedi scientists and engineers for thousands of years. Everything that can be gained from the Star Forge has been gained, what could they possibly hope to find?"

"I don't know," Felicity said, "but the star charts they took--,"

"The star charts they took were only part of the information they stole. There are a number of other files that were taken that were much more likely to be their target."

"But those star charts can only be found here," Felicity persisted.

Faye gave her a look. "And how do you know that?"

"Why else would they come here? Why not the public library on Coruscant? Or Corellia? It's because the Jedi Order hid any data leading to the Star Forge's location, isn't it?"

The Jedi Master crossed her arms over her chest and gave both of them a stern look. "You are going to drop this matter now. We will handle the investigation and if we need your input we will ask for it," she told them then she stood and moved over to the door, pressing a switch on the wall to open it. "And, Felicity, I'll hear no more talk about the Star Forge. We will pursue every reasonable avenue and bring these crooks to justice but we will do this properly. The next time I find you doing something you shouldn't I'll let the Council decide your fate."

Felicity and Feldar looked at each other then back at Faye and nodded. Felicity clearly still had some objections but she knew Faye was not willing to listen to them. She needed a sympathetic ear, someone she would listen to. She thought of Jade, the Jedi Librarian. Maybe she knew something about the Star Forge that could help convince Faye that the star charts were the thieves' actual goal. With only the slightest hesitation the two padawans got up out of their chairs and left the room, Faye's stern gaze following them all the way. When they were out in the hallway away from the Jedi Master's prying eyes Felicity turned to Feldar.

"I'm sorry," she said, "I didn't mean to get you into trouble."

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Re: The Reckoning

Post by Archangel » Fri Apr 11, 2014 9:25 am

Feldar shook his head, keeping his face downcast. If he tried to lower his chin any further, he would have to hunch over to get his chest out of the way. "It's okay," he mumbled, "She was right. I didn't have to do what I did. I chose to." The fluttering in his stomach had spread to his throat and tried to choke him. He tried to swallow down the lump, but to no avail; his stomach was still dancing like an Ewok, and the lump had no place to go. The stress and emotion nearly overwhelmed him; he wanted nothing more than to crawl into a corner and weep until his eyes ran dry and the pain went away.

He had not expected to react so emotionally to their situation, but when Master Ward had threatened him with expulsion from the Order, hot shame had filled his breast and a fire burned in his gut. At first, he had been terrified of losing the Order, and furious at himself for jeopardizing his membership. He had been angry at Felicity, too, for encouraging him to join her in her rebellion, but he knew that was foolish; he had wanted to do something, had wanted to help. He had been a member of the Order - Padawan or not - for a long time, and even now, after everything, the Council was not treating him with respect. No one trained him, and no one wanted his help on missions or tasks; then here was Felicity, asking for his help, respecting his abilities. How could he refuse?

The more he thought about it, the more his anger shifted its focus. The warning words of the Mirialan he had met on Onderon, Ayol Thanat, rang softly in the back of his mind, trying to temper his ire with reason. Make the best of this, Jedi T'kappi, he barely heard and quickly ignored. His emotion burned hot in his chest, and when he spoke again, his lips curled and he was nearly snarling. "It's not like being expelled would change much," he said, "All I ever get to do around here is read and meditate, and I could do that anywhere. Even if they took away my lightsaber, they can't stop me from making another one. They never want me involved in anything!" The thoughts that the Council was busy with all the wars tearing apart the Galaxy, and that many other Padawans were stuck in group classes and minor studies, and that he always had the choice of pursuing apprenticeship in one of the other Force traditions at the Temple, all occurred to Feldar, but he did not care.

Turning to Felicity, he said, "I want to help. Isn't there anything we can do?"

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Re: The Reckoning

Post by Pryde » Fri Apr 11, 2014 10:23 am

A shadow passed over Felicity's expression as Feldar spoke. His frustrations with the Order sounded eerily similar to things Mikhail had said when he was still under the influence of the dark side. She didn't voice her concerns, though, and when Feldar asked her what they should do next she told him. "We should talk to Jade," she said, "Maybe she can convince the Council to listen to us or at least let us help. Come on, this way!"

She hurried down the hallway with Feldar on her heels though with his short stubby legs he had difficulty keeping up. Jade Kitana, much to Felicity's chagrin, was less than open to helping them as Felicity had hoped she would be. Felicity had tried to plead their case to them but she agreed with Master Ward.

"I'm sorry, Felicity, but I just don't think the Star Forge is the answer. I've been to the ruins, there's nothing left."

"There's got to be something," Felicity persisted, "Those star charts are the reason they came here, I'm sure of it!"

Jade sighed and leaned against a nearby table. "Look, after the Star Forge was destroyed the Order spent years sifting through the wreckage looking for something to salvage. In the end they decided the damage to the super structure was too extensive for there to be anything of value to learn from it. It was considered a great tragedy by many as the Rakatan technology used to build it is far more advanced than anything we have today but none of that technology can be repaired. I just don't see why anyone would want to go there."

"Can you at least bring it up to the Council? Maybe one of them will feel differently."

"Felicity," Jade began patiently, "Master Ward ordered you to let this go. She said the investigation was already being handled and that if they needed your help they would ask for it."

"But they're not going to ask for it!" Felicity interrupted her.

"Exactly my point, Felicity, you're a padawan and a sixteen year old girl. I know you've got good instincts but you lack experience, you and Feldar both. I just don't want to see either of you get hurt or worse, expelled from the Order."

"Please, Jade. I know I'm right on this!"

The Jedi Librarian gently shook her head. "I'm sorry, Felicity, but I can't. You and Feldar should return to your studies. Master Ward will handle apprehending the thieves."

Felicity was going to say more but before she could the Jedi Librarian grabbed her stack of data disks and started to walk away. Felicity turned to look at Feldar and saw the same frustration on his face that mirrored her own. Why was no one listening to her? If Max were here he'd listen to her but the Council had him out on assignment. Jace was busy running a nation, Mikhail was on a pilgrimage to learn to control his power, Keira was busy with the Shadows and Adam Sage was currently leading a hunt for Darth Sirena.

"So what do we do now?" Feldar squeaked. He, like Felicity, was having trouble controlling his emotions.

"We investigate this ourselves," she said, "We find a ship and we follow the charts. I know we'll find something there and when we do we can bring it back and then they'll have to listen to us."

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Re: The Reckoning

Post by Mir » Fri Apr 11, 2014 8:13 pm

“I have a ship.”

Felicity and Feldar turned to see Certh walking towards them.

“Great, so we take your ship and we go.” Felicity said. She started walking and then stopped. “Wait, where’s your ship?” She asked, turning back.

Certh looked away, his face conflicted. It was obvious that there was something about this that was bothering him. He looked at the Chadra-Fan and then at

“What?” She asked, impatiently.

“I’m just not sure that this is what the Council would want.” He said. “I was punished for going against the Council’s wishes. Do you really think that we should be doing something like this?” He asked. Then he remembered what his father had said to him and what Jade had asked him to do. “Never mind. You guys are right. This is something that needs to be done.” He said, his voice changing to show determination. “The important problems of the Order can fall through the cracks, unless there are those who are willing to solve them.”

He turned and started walking, gesturing them to follow him. “The AgriCorps’ vessel is a Nova Courier. It’s not the fastest, or the most durable, but it’ll get us where we need to go.” He said.

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Re: The Reckoning

Post by Pryde » Mon Apr 14, 2014 1:27 am

Certh was right, the ship wasn't much to look at but then it wasn't built for style, speed or war. Rather it was built for functionality and in that regard it would serve well. So long as a larger, more well armed ship wasn't waiting for them on the other side, that is. Felicity tried not to think about that as they all piled into Certh's ship. Getting clearance to leave had been easier than expected, Certh being part of the Agricorps helped in that regard. At the very least it provided them with a convenient excuse, but it wouldn't hold up for long. Hopefully, just long enough for them to reach their destination.

Felicity had to feed Certh the coordinates from memory as neither she nor Feldar were willing to chance hacking into the archives again. Fortunately, she did get a pretty good look at the finished map and a fairly keen memory as well. The coordinates led them right to the ruins of the Star Forge and just as Faye and Jade had said the Forge had long since been destroyed. Upon seeing the massive debris field Felicity's heart fell, maybe they weren't going to find anything here at all. From the looks of it there didn't seem to be anything left to find.

"What now," Feldar asked.

Felicity's shoulders slumped. "I don't know," she said, "Can we scan the debris field?"

"What would we scan for," Certh asked her.

Felicity just stared at him helplessly. She really had no idea what they were looking for.

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Re: The Reckoning

Post by Mir » Tue Apr 15, 2014 5:21 am

"I suppose we could just do a basic, overall scan." Certh said. "The on board computer has a few generic scans available for use. You never know, one of them might pick up what you're looking for. The other option is to reach out with the Force, to discover any anomalies." He said.

"The system has been the same for many years." Feldar said, nodding. "Therefore, anything that's new or that has arrived recently in system," He said, his voice approaching more of a squeak as he got a little excited.

"...would feel off to a Force user." Felicity said, finishing the thought.

Certh nodded. "I say we use the ship's scanners, but we trust the Force."

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Re: The Reckoning

Post by Pryde » Fri Apr 18, 2014 8:41 am

It was hours later before something actually happened. For awhile Felicity felt certain that they weren't going to find anything and that this was all a waste of time then all of a sudden something popped up on the ship's scanners. Certh heard the accompanying beep from the ship's console and alerted the others to it. Feldar and Felicity came rushing into the cockpit moments later and Felicity was already asking the question before she was even inside.

"What is it?"

"Some kind of power fluctuation," he said, "Pretty good amount too if it's where the scanner says it is."

"Where?"

Certh lifted his finger and pointed to a distant speck hidden amongst the debris. "Right around there."

"Well, let's go check it out," Felicity said, sitting down in the chair next to him.

Feldar had taken the seat behind them and Certh was already bringing the ship around. When they arrived at the source of the fluctuation they were surprised to see a large section of the Star Forge still somewhat intact. Certh quickly ran a scan finding signs of life but no atmosphere. "There's definitely someone there, but it's all vacuum."

"Do we have any Evac suits," Felicity asked.

Feldar was shocked, "Wait, you're actually going out there?"

"Someone has to, right? We need to catch these guys and find out what they're after."

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Re: The Reckoning

Post by Mir » Fri Apr 18, 2014 6:22 pm

By the time Feldar had composed himself, Certh had already found the vacuum suits. “It shouldn’t take us too long to suit up.” He said.

“What do you mean ‘us’?” Felicity asked.

“You don’t expect me to let you go out there by yourself, do you?” He called back. “I’m bringing two suits. Either Feldar or myself should go with you, and the other one will remain on the ship, to monitor what’s going on out there, with the scanners. I think the suits come with portable scanners that can uplink to the ship, so we can get more detailed information on what’s going on out there.”

“No way, I’m here, to do this.” Felicity said, obviously not wanting to put someone else in danger.

“We’re here too.” Certh said, returning to the room with two suits. “You didn’t fly here by yourself.” He said.

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Re: The Reckoning

Post by Archangel » Tue Apr 22, 2014 6:54 pm

Feldar had spent the hours meditating, trying to feel something in the debris field, but he kept getting distracted. Something felt off, and it wasn't outside the ship; he knew that his selfishness, his eagerness to take control, had fanned a flame in his heart, but he wasn't sure that was a good thing. As he pondered the dangers, though, he waved them off; he was a Jedi, Padawan or not, and he was capable of handling himself. The Order needed to recognize that he had things to offer; this was his chance to prove himself. After they succeeded, someone would have to train him.

Examining what Certh had brought, he piped up, "Those suits won't fit me. I'd be useless out there." Looking between the diminutive Chadra-Fan and the human-shaped suits, they knew he was right. It would be up to Certh and Felicity to go extravehicular.

That suited Feldar just fine. Even if he were linked up via comm to the others, there was nothing like drifting through space without a ship to make you feel alone. The thought alone made a shiver run down his spine; he was perfectly happy to manage the ship while they were out. He had a keen eye for the mechanical, after all; perhaps he could even be useful. He slipped past Felicity, who seemed to be trying to find a way to refuse Certh's offer, and sat in the co-pilot seat. His hands, one biological, one mechanical, fairly flew across the panels as he rerouted power to the sensors. They would not need more than thrusters, and they couldn't very well use the shields with two personnel outside; the danger of them colliding with the particle shields was too high. No environmental suit could withstand a burst of energy like that, and the Force wouldn't help much with the burns once their oxygen supply escaped.

Glancing back at the two humans, he added, "Are you just going to stand around all day, or are we here to find answers?"

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Re: The Reckoning

Post by Pryde » Wed Apr 30, 2014 1:37 pm

Felicity paused a moment and stared at Feldar, she was taken by surprise by the Chadra-Fan's sudden change of heart. When he started this whole thing he was so hesitant about it but now his assertiveness was almost contagious. "You're right," she said then she looked over at Certh, "Let's go."

She moved to the airlock of the ship and pulled the environmental suit over her body, checking to make sure that all the seals were secure. Certh did the same then tongued the control for his com suite and piped a message to Felicity.

"Have you ever been in zero g before," he asked her.

Felicity thought about that a moment then shook her head. "Nope."

Suddenly Certh felt like this endeavor would be a bad idea. "Well, just remember you can use your thrusters here to maneuver yourself," he said, indicating the controls on the suit. "Be careful, though, there's no friction out there to slow you down and you only have so much fuel before you run out."

"Got it," Felicity said, then she pressed the control on the airlock, closing the door to the interior ship and starting the process cycling the air out to avoid an explosive decompression. Once the pressure had equalized the door to the exterior of the ship slid open and Felicity moved to the brink to look outside.

It was so exciting, standing there staring out into the void beyond but she knew she had to keep her nerves down. Too much excitement could cause her to make a mistake so after taking a moment to compose herself she stepped carefully outside the ship, keeping her hand on the bulkhead and then bracing herself against the ship before pushing off towards the wreckage from where the fluctuations were coming from. Certh did the same before following behind her and both Jedi carefully used their thrusters to maneuver around debris towards the wreckage.

Once inside Felicity marveled at how large this section of the Star Forge was. It was remarkable that such a large portion of the station had survived the utter disintegration that tore it apart and though it was but a small part the sheer size of it hinted at a much, much larger facility. For a moment she was lost in her surroundings, gawking at everything they passed. When danger finally reared its head she had but a moment to react.

After a flash of warning through the Force she braced herself against Certh and pushed off sending both of them out of harm's way as blaster fire ripped through the space between them. Then she flipped about, placing both her feet against a nearby bulkhead before pushing off and sending herself flying towards the two mercenaries shooting at them. They brought their blasters to bear on her and opened fire. Felicity quickly drew her double bladed lightsaber and ignited one end, deflecting the incoming blaster fire harmlessly away from herself. When she was close enough she cut down both mercenaries with a couple of deft swings of her lightsaber and both men went limp, floating away instead of crumpling to the floor as three more enemies appeared with blasters at the ready.

Certh reached out from cover and grabbed Felicity, pulling her back into the relative safety of the blown out computer terminal he was hiding behind. Blaster fire rained in all around them, burning holes through the terminal but failing to punch completely through.

"I think we found them," Felicity said, glancing at Certh.

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Re: The Reckoning

Post by Mir » Mon May 05, 2014 3:50 pm

“What gave you that idea?” Certh replied with a small smile. He paid for his humor by having a blaster bolt streak past him, scorching the light armor that the Zero-G suits afforded them. “Well, it would appear that your feelings on the subject were correct.” He said, nodding slowly. “Now, we need to figure out how to stop them.”

“We should get in touch with Feldar.” Felicity said.

He nodded and pressed a button on the suit, to try to establish a link with the ship. “Feldar, do you copy?” He asked.

”Bar…barely. I think that the….debris field is….blocking trans…transmissions.” Feldar said.

“The ship doesn’t have the greatest communications suite.” Certh said. They were able to speak to each other due to their close proximity, but Feldar, in the ship, was much farther away, and the metals in the debris field was probably causing interference. “Feldar, we’ve found something, but we’re not sure what’s going on. We’re going to go in deeper.” He said, hoping that the Chadra-Fan would be able to hear the transmission.

“Where’s your lightsaber?” Felicity asked.

“On Ossus.” Certh replied, a bit unhappily.

“You may need to repeat that.”

“My lightsaber was taken from me after Near Indosa.” Certh replied, and reached out with the Force, calling one of the discarded, now floating, blasters to him. It flew through space and he snatched it out of the void, checking the power supply. “Long story, too many people shooting. Maybe some other time?” He asked, with an innocent smile that would have reminded someone of his father, back during happier times.

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Re: The Reckoning

Post by Pryde » Mon May 05, 2014 8:24 pm

"Okay, well... Cover me," Felicity said and then she pushed off from the floor and soared up and out of cover.

"Hey, wait! Felicity," Certh called after her but the girl had already launched herself into action.

Blaster fire followed her up and she deflected what she could while Certh gave her some covering fire, forcing the mercenaries back into cover. Meanwhile Felicity had reached the apex of her ascent and bracing herself against the ceiling she launched herself down and straight at the nearest merc. As she sailed past him one cut from her saber took him down, then she readjusted her descent by pushing off the floor and the bulkhead and sending herself sideways behind cover just as a salvo of blaster bolts burned through the space where she had been.

Certh had to wonder if she had been truthful with him before back on the ship. She had said she'd never been in zero g before but the way she moved, reacted to danger and fought. Was she reacting entirely on instinct? Another wave of blaster fire brought him back to the presence and he answered it in kind with a salvo from his own blaster, landing three shots on a merc and putting him down for good. Felicity had angled herself to get a good trajectory at the third and final merc but as she flew towards him with her saber ready to strike a fourth figure appeared at of nowhere, red lightsaber in hand.

Felicity parried his initial attack and the force of it sent her soaring backwards. The Sith pushed himself towards her and followed up his attack with another barrage of quick precision strikes. Meanwhile, the third merc had turned his attention to Certh and opened fire, raining blaster bolts down around his head and feet...

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Re: The Reckoning

Post by Archangel » Tue May 06, 2014 10:29 am

Even if communications weren't staying strong, the power Feldar had rerouted to the sensors meant that he was able to keep a steady eye on what was happening to the other two Jedi--but if communications broke down, then the link between the ship and the suits might be severed, leaving them with nothing more than their own eyes to see their surroundings. In a space suit, Feldar imagined that was nearly impossible. He had to get closer.

Rerouting power again, he restored the shields; there was a lot of debris floating in the area, and he could not afford a collision in the old space bucket. Worse still, there was a lot of blaster fire where Felicity and Certh were, which could mean an enemy ship--an enemy ship with guns. Once the shields were up, Feldar inched the ship forward with thrusters; then he sent a burst to one side, redirecting the nose toward the large chunk that the Jedi had entered. The particle shields sparked and fizzed as dust and rock and ancient pieces of alien technology collided with them; a warning indicator told him that the fore shields had dropped to 87%, and dorsal shields were at 96%. He redirected power to balance them out, then shunted a little extra to the forward shields. As long as he was moving forward, the front end would take a beating before he got close enough for communications to be strengthened.

The ship inched up close to the large chunk of debris. Feldar balanced the shields back out, and noted that they were at 82% overall. 82% of what, he wondered--if a little space dust weakened them that much, they would not stand up to prolonged blaster fire--or much blaster fire at all, really. He keyed the comm. "How are communications now? I've moved the ship a little closer. You should find your suit sensor suite a little improved."

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Re: The Reckoning

Post by Mir » Wed May 07, 2014 4:01 am

Certh really wished that he had a lightsaber.

It wasn’t that he was a bad shot, or didn’t know how to handle a blaster; it was that he was most comfortable when he was using a lightsaber. That was what he had fought Kishkumen and his forces with when he and his family had been stranded in the Warp. It was what he had trained with all of his life. The blaster represented his current lot in life, a lot that he was trying to improve.

The mercenary was good, his weapon of choice was a blaster, and his accuracy was unnerving. Certh was doing everything he could to stay out of the man’s range, which meant that his own ability to counter attack was limited. But that didn’t mean that he was without options. Reaching out with the Force, he seized a piece of debris and threw it towards the mercenary, who moved out of the way. This gave him the opportunity that he needed, the opening.

He seized it. Diving forward, Certh reached out again with the Force, but this time on the man himself. Grabbing the blaster with the Force, he wrenched it out of the man’s grasp, breaking a few of his fingers in the process. As the mercenary howled with pain and his other hand went, in instinct, to his now injured hand, he didn’t get a chance to see the two blaster bolts that ended up slamming into his chest, and ending his life.

Now to see to Felicity.

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Re: The Reckoning

Post by Pryde » Wed May 07, 2014 8:59 pm

Felicity had gotten separated from Certh. The Sith that had attacked her was relentless in his pursuit and clearly had more experience in zero G than she. Somehow, though, she managed to cause a distraction and sneak away from him. Now she was hiding in a blown out section of the bulkhead as he searched for her. She had the hilt of her saberstaff in her hand but the blades were not alight. She kept an eye out over her shoulder for the Sith as she carefully made her way through the dark. On her scanner she could see she was getting closer to the power fluctuations and in the distance she could see a light flickering.

Glancing around one more time for the Sith she made sure the coast was clear before making her way to the light. At the end of a long, dark tunnel she peered around a corner and saw five men huddled over a computer terminal. One man was kneeling and using some kind of strange device she'd never seen before to power the computer. Whatever it was the energy output was immense, from this distance it practically overwhelmed her sensors. She needed to see what was on that computer terminal, but five men was more than she wanted to fight and any one of them could be a Sith.

She needed some kind of distraction, but what? That's when something exploded in the distance. The five men stopped and looked at each other before one of them ordered three of the others to go check it out. They hefted their blaster rifles and headed off towards the source of the explosion while the remaining to returned their attention to the computer. She couldn't make out the screen from here but it looked like they were searching through files until they finally settled on one. Whatever it was it had to be what they came for and that meant Felicity needed to get closer.

Reach out with the Force she tried to gently nudge the mind of the man who was clearly in charge. She was trying to be subtle about it but his senses were keener than she suspected. He turned and looked in her direction and she quickly hid. Glancing back at the man behind him he seemed to tell him to stay there. Then he ignited a red lightsaber and floated over to where Felicity had been standing. When he rounded the corner there was no one to be found, but he thought for sure he had felt someone try to influence him with the Force. He seemed to pause a moment in indecision before pushing off further down the hallway in search of the intruder.

Once he was out of sight Felicity emerged from a small alcove and floated out into the light. There was still one person left between her and the computer terminal but she felt confident she could deal with him. A Force Push picked him up and threw him into the wall. It wasn't enough to kill him but it was enough to knock him out. As his body floated limply away Felicity approached the computer terminal, biting her lip in frustration when she realized the controls were too alien to her. Fortunately, the man working on the terminal had plugged in a device that looked more familiar. It was what he used to manipulate the files.

"Feldar, can you read me," she spoke into her com.

There was a moment of static and then finally Feldar spoke. "There seems to be some interference but yes."

"I'm sending you a file... I think," Felicity said as she manipulated the keyboard. She entered in a few commands and a progress bar appeared.

"I'm getting it now," Feldar confirmed and Felicity resisted the urge to celebrate.

Any celebration would have been premature as from out of nowhere a red lightsaber nearly took her head off. Fortunately, Certh arrived in the nick of time to distract the Sith with some precise shooting. Meanwhile, Felicity had pushed away from the computer terminal and had activated both blades of her saberstaff. Before she could attack, however, a second figure appeared from behind and sent jolts of electricity out from his hand, electrocuting them both into unconsciousness. As the two Jedi floated helplessly between them the Sith turned their attention to the terminal. The progress bar now read one hundred percent and the leader frowned.

He looked at his subordinate and then gestured to the two Jedi. "I want these two brought to the ship and the recipient of that transmission found. No one leaves, understood?"

"Understood, my Master," the Sith answered with a bow, then he ordered the returning mercenaries to take custody of the two Jedi as the leader turned back to look at the terminal.

Dagobah was their next destination. It was there he would find the answers they seek...

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Re: The Reckoning

Post by Archangel » Thu May 08, 2014 8:48 pm

Feldar received the file, alright, but he did not get a chance to look at it. No sooner had he heard the trill of a completed file transfer than he heard the klaxon of a sensor warning. He checked the console, and his snout ran dry. A ship - a big ship - was rounding the debris and bearing down on him, weapons hot. He shunted all available power to shields just before the first blast hit. He almost fell from the pilot's seat as the vessel was rattled by the concussive force on the shields.

Centering himself on the seat, he threw a switch and the ship went to full thrust. He readjusted the power settings; shields were now at 12% on all faces, sensors were offline, communications were offline, life support was minimal, and sublight engines were back online. He shunted the shields to aft and ventral, the relative directions of the enemy craft, and switched from thrusters to sublight. He was hoping for a few quick maneuvers among the debris to lose them, so he could circle around and pick up Felicity and Certh, but the first volley must have shaken something loose; the little freighter was sluggish, at best. Feldar cursed, a rare occurrence for the kindly rodent, and banked to starboard, trying to get behind a chunk of debris there.

Unfortunately, he did not take the time to reorient the shields. When the enemy vessel hit the debris with a short series of concussion missiles, it broke apart and hurtled in a new direction: right into Feldar's hull. Shrapnel and chunks of metal tore through the hull, cutting cables and life support feeds and opening the vessel up to vacuum. Thinking quickly, Feldar shunted the shields to his starboard side; the ship shuddered under the remaining debris cloud, and when it passed, his shields were down.

He couldn't run any farther, he noted; the engines were all but dead. His only hope was that the enemy was in a hurry, and would leave his death an assumption. He did not have to shut off the engines, or use the thrusters to initiate a drift and spin; that was accomplished already. He darted to the door of the cockpit and sealed it; fortunately, that area had avoided the preliminary debris. Back at the console, he shut down life support and automatic force-fields. He faintly heard hissing through the door as the air in the rest of the ship escaped through many hull breaches, then the sound faded--there was no longer enough atmosphere for the sound to carry, and the hull would not transmit the faint audio of passing breath, even to Feldar's keen ears.

He hunkered down under the console, in case they went for a visual confirmation, and held his breath, as if that would help.

A few long seconds went by. He peeked out the cockpit viewport. Certh's little freighter had drifted behind a new chunk of debris; he could no longer see either the enemy vessel or the huge wreck that Felicity and Certh had entered. Not daring to turn on the sensors, he settled back into his alcove, wishing he could have done more, hoping that his friends had not been killed. He knew that he had not abandoned them--this was not like Onderon--but he could not help that it felt like Onderon. Here he was, hiding in a corner, while Jedi were out there, fighting for their lives. In his head, he knew that he had done all he could--that there was no evac suit for him, that the ship had no weapons, that his only choice was to flee and hide and hope for an advantage--but in his heart, he hated cowering, and wish for all the Galaxy that he could draw his lightsaber and face down these villains himself.

After what seemed an eternity, he slowly stood; his joints popped as he escaped from his crawlspace. He had passed by the new debris into a bit of open space; he could not see the enemy vessel, but that was not reliable information. Timidly, he reactivated life support, then force-fields, then sensors. Sensor sweeps confirmed his visual evaluation: whoever had been here was gone, and now, Feldar was alone. He took all power from shields and engines and rerouted to sensors, life support, and communications. He sent out a periodic comm ping, hoping for a response from Certh or Felicity, but he received no transmissions.

He sighed. He hated loneliness almost as much as cowardice, but he figured that the Council would be sending a rescue--or perhaps "recovery" was more accurate--team after the three rebellious Jedi. They would come along eventually, find his ping, trace the source, and pick him up. In the meantime, he settled into the pilot's seat, perusing over the terminal as he examined the file Felicity had sent. Something about a swamp world...

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Re: The Reckoning

Post by Pryde » Thu May 08, 2014 10:24 pm

Felicity groaned softly as she started to regain consciousness. Her body ached all over and she could still feel some residual pain from the Force Lightning that had caused her entire body to tense and convulse. When she tried to reach up and rub her forehead she suddenly realized she could not move and all at once her eyes fluttered open. She was suspended in mid-air by some kind of force cage and right along beside her was Certh, similarly imprisoned and groggily regaining consciousness as well.

"We're not dead," she said quietly, "Why are we not dead?"

"Because you may yet prove useful," a voice spoke from somewhere in the room. Felicity followed the sound of it to a man she recognized from the attack on the temple. "Darth Kalos," the man introduced himself as he stepped out into the light, "I would say it is an honor to meet you but I had not expected our pursuer to be so--young. Are the Jedi really so arrogant that they would send children to fight for them?"

"You were at the temple back on Ossus," Felicity said, "Just what were you looking for on that terminal?"

"Answers," the man replied cryptically, "and now I'm afraid I must seek some more from you. What do the Jedi know?"

What do they know? Well, nothing, really. We haven't had the chance to tell them yet. "They knew enough to send us to the Star Forge," she lied, "and they'll be looking for us if we don't report back."

Kalos stared at her, trying to decipher if she was telling the truth. Then he decided that ultimately it didn't matter. His master, Darth Callidus, was one step ahead of the Jedi. Even if they had gotten this far they would get no further. The recipient of the transmission had been destroyed and the Jedi would not have access to the proper technology to power and interface with the Rakatan space station. When they arrived they would find nothing but a dead end. So instead he decided to try a different avenue of questioning, one that would sate his own curiosity.

"You moved with skill during our battle," he told her, "You have had zero G training, I take it?"

Felicity shook her head and the man seemed genuinely surprised. "A true warrior," he said, "Reacting on instinct, fighting with utter ferocity. I would have liked to challenge you when you were older but defeating you now would have little sport in it."

"Sport," Felicity asked, "How can you call a fight to the death a sport?"

Kalos smiled, "A warrior's instincts and a pacifist's care for life. You, my friend, are an interesting contradiction. I'm guessing there aren't many like you amongst your order? Skill in battle is not something the Jedi teach with any real earnest."

Felicity fell silent. It was true that the Jedi did not consider themselves a military force. Younglings would train in saber combat as they grew but their teachers would always emphasize that the techniques they learned were for defense. Felicity herself had received special training from her cousin, Adam Sage, and was, unlike most Jedi, well versed in hand to hand combat as well as how to fight with a lightsaber. Additionally, she held no preconceived notions about what combat was. After being orphaned at a young age she knew the truth of it all too well. Combat was a struggle for survival and her survival depended on being better than her opponent. So she trained hard, harder than most and she always pushed herself to improve and to overcome increasingly difficult challenges. After all, she intended to save the galaxy someday and she couldn't very well do that if she was dead.

The Sith watched her for a moment before deciding that he had his answer. "I thought not," he said, then he gestured to Certh, "What of your friend here? He is trained in the Force but bears no lightsaber. Why is that? Speak, boy!"

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Re: The Reckoning

Post by Mir » Sat May 10, 2014 1:05 pm

Certh had wondered what his response to this line of questioning would be. Undoubtedly it would rise, but he hadn’t expected it to come from a Sith Lord, while he himself was bound. He thought about changing his answer, but he remembered the conversation that he’d had with Varanin and her ersatz apprentice, Kayla Masi. With that in mind, he stayed with his original answer, the one that he had worked on in his head for some time now.

“I lost it.” He said. “A group of Jedi and Jade Empire Patriots attacked the second most powerful Sith Lord in the Sith Empire, in retaliation for an attack that she made on the Empress of the Jade Empire. When we returned to Ossus, because our actions went against the direct orders of the Council, some of us were stripped of our lightsabers and sent to join one of the Corps.” He added.

“So we have someone who believes in what he stands for, and acts on it?” Kalos said. “Just our luck to have caught such stubborn little Jedi.” He said. “Not stubborn enough though. You still managed to get caught.”

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Re: The Reckoning

Post by Pryde » Mon May 12, 2014 9:34 am

Neither of the two Jedi reacted to his quip which might have suggested how well disciplined they were if not for the fact they were likely out here without orders. From the looks of her age the girl was just a padawan and he doubted the boy was her master. Jedi Masters rarely send their padawans on missions on their own. No, he was certain the Jedi Order knew nothing of their whereabouts and with the destruction of their transport the last person that might have known what had happened to them was gone. For now the secrecy of their mission was still intact.

Satisfied, Darth Kalos turned and left the room, leaving the two Jedi to their own devices. Felicity struggled against her bonds for a good minute before deciding it was no use. She allowed her body to relax and looked at Certh apologetically. This whole debacle had been her idea, she was the one who suggested they investigate this on their own and then this happens. She was afraid for herself but mostly she was afraid for Certh. He didn't have to be here she could have easily refused his help and he'd be back safe and sound at the temple.

"I'm sorry I got you into this," she said, "but I swear I'll find a way to get us out."

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Re: The Reckoning

Post by Pryde » Mon May 12, 2014 10:01 am

It was several hours later when a ship arrived in system. Jonas Dax stood behind the helm as he scanned the debris field with his eyes. Grimacing to himself he glanced at his companions, two Antarian Rangers and a fellow Jedi. No one said anything but he knew what they were all thinking. Finding a ship amongst all this debris was going to be like scanning for a needle in a needle stack.

"Well, start your sweep," he said to the Ranger sitting at the helm.

"I already have, Sir," the man replied, "and I'm picking up a distress beacon."

That's never a good sign, "Let's go check it out."

Jonas felt a lump in his throat as the Ranger skillfully navigated the debris field. He had felt a dark sense of foreboding from the moment Master Ward assigned him this mission and now he was beginning to understand why. The young padawan actually stumbled into something and now she's endangered two of her peers as well. Whatever it was they found he knew they had to hurry to rescue them.

Someone standing behind him drew in a sharp breath, snapping his attention back to the present. He glanced up at the viewport and his eyes visibly widened. The ship the young Jedi had taken off in was a mess. The vessel drifted with a slight list in a cloud of its own debris. From this distance Jonas could easily make out the tell tale signs of multiple hull breaches and scorch marks left behind by turbo lasers.

"Hail them," he said urgently, gesturing to the woman sitting in the copilot's seat, "Tell me they're still alive."

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Re: The Reckoning

Post by Archangel » Mon May 12, 2014 7:32 pm

Feldar knew that the Jedi needed to learn about the information in the file Felicity had sent him. He did not know how they would react, but he was certain that they would need to react. Besides the fact that Felicity had been right about the movements of the Temple's attackers, the details that Feldar had learned from the file...

The console trilled. A comm signal! Feldar spun his seat around--he had been idly facing away from the viewport--and punched the comm. "This is Padawan Feldar T'kappi," he squeaked, "I trust that I am speaking with the Jedi contingent sent to retrieve Jedi Felicity Sage, Jedi Certh Kol-Rekali, and myself. I have no thrusters left, so you'll need to match my trajectory and spin to attach an airlock; when you do, please make sure to plug in a power transfer cable. At present, the vessel does not have sufficient power to maintain forcefields and life support in all areas, so I won't be able to reach the airlock without more power."

The other ship acknowledged and began to comply. The voice of someone in charge came through the comm. "What happened out there, Padawan T'kappi? Where are Sage and Kol-Rekali?" Feldar thought he heard concern in the man's tone, but he was not adept at reading tonal cues in human speech, and certainly not over a comm signal.

Feldar explained, "Mercenaries, and from what I sensed in the Force, some kind of dark Jedi also, maybe even Sith. All evidence points to the very same people who robbed the Temple on Ossus. Felicity and Certh were taken prisoner. This vessel has no weapons and minimal combat capability; I stood little chance against their vessel. It was a large ship, too big to be a freighter. I'm afraid sensors didn't get much more before they were knocked out." He paused, then decided to add a note of urgency: "Please, Master, work quickly in connecting our vessels. Before their capture, my companions sent a file that you must see. It is about a planet called Dagobah. I believe the others are headed there now."

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Re: The Reckoning

Post by Pryde » Tue May 13, 2014 7:01 pm

Captured? Alive? He closed his eyes and reached out with the Force sensing nothing but the presence of the young padawan aboard the broken ship. If the other two were still alive they weren't in the system, he didn't know either of them particularly too well so he couldn't really say for sure. "Bring us alongside the ship. Let's get that padawan on board."

It was several minutes longer before Jonas' ship was finally docked with the busted agroship. Once they had Feldar on board the vessel he was very eager to show them the file Felicity had sent him. Most of it was difficult to read, written in a language long dead for tens of thousands of years, what little he could make out seemed to suggest that something was hidden on Dagobah. No doubt the events at the temple and those that happened here were link. Whomever these Sith were they were looking for something and if Jonas had to guess it was something powerful.

"What do we do about him," the female ranger asked, jerking her thumb back at Feldar.

Jonas considered that a moment then shook his head. "Felicity and Certh's captors have a head start on us as is," he said, "We don't have time to take him to safety so he'll have to come with us."

The woman looked between him and Feldar then finally shrugged. "As you say, Sir," she said, taking her seat in the copilot's chair.

Jonas went back to perusing the file as the two Antarian Rangers locked in a course for Dagobah. "Padawan," Jonas said suddenly, "What can you tell me about the ship that attacked you and the events leading up to the other two being captured? I need to know every detail you can remember."

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Re: The Reckoning

Post by Mir » Wed May 21, 2014 9:20 am

Felicity’s apology fell on deaf ears.

“I made the choice, Felicity.” Certh said with an understanding smile. “I can accept the consequences of my choice.” He said. “Trust me, I have practice with that.”

The last sentence showed a hint of bitterness in it, but he swept past it with his next words. “I’m more concerned with knowing what happened to Feldar. If he was able to escape and survive then maybe he might be able to get help. The Order needs to know what is happening here.”

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Re: The Reckoning

Post by Archangel » Fri May 23, 2014 5:34 am

Feldar relayed his perception of events as well as he could remember, starting with their arrival in-system and proceeding through the battle. He tried to provide both his recollection of his sensor readings--although perhaps downloading the little ship's databanks would be more effective in that regard--as well as his own impressions through the Force. He recalled when Felicity and Certh had gotten into trouble, and the sense that things were going poorly as he had moved the ship in closer. Then, of course, things had gotten radically worse with the advent of the enemy cruiser.

Feldar described the ship as best he could; noting down its technical specifications had been rather low on his priority list at the time, but his background in mechanical engineering served him well. "I think it was a Tartan patrol cruiser," he explained, "but it had been modified. Most Tartans don't come with missile launchers, and this one definitely had some concussion missiles in its arsenal. I think our opponents have a lot of resources; they probably didn't expect resistance way out here, but they still brought a tough ship that's normally only available to the Empire."

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Re: The Reckoning

Post by Pryde » Thu Jun 05, 2014 6:24 pm

How long had it been? Felicity had lost track. It felt like hours, probably more than enough time for them to arrive at their next destination but she had yet to feel that familiar surge of returning to real space. In the interim she had been trying to break free of her bonds with little success. She could not call upon the Force and the energy field holding her in place restricted her movement and held her fast. Struggle as she might she couldn't even budge herself an inch. Glancing over at Certh she suspected he was having similar success though it was hard to tell if was even trying to escape or simply biding his time. Felicity on the other hand was making all kinds of noises trying to force her way to freedom but it was all for naught.

After awhile the doors to their cell slid open again and Darth Kalos stepped in with an armed escort. With a wave of his hand he deactivated Felicity's binds allowing her to fall to her feet, but he left Certh still pinned in mid air.

"What's going on," the boy demanded, "What are you doing with her?"

"The master would seek an audience," Kalos said simply, beckoning for Felicity to follow him.

The girl shared a momentary glance with Certh before following the Sith and his four armed mercenaries out of the cell. She was escorted through the ship to the bridge where she found a hooded and cloaked figure standing near a large view port staring out into the swirling tunnel of hyperspace. Darth Kalos gestured for her to step forward and meet his master but kept himself and his mercenaries at a distance. Felicity felt that even though she presented a clear danger to the Sith they weren't too worried about her causing any problems without her lightsaber. They'd be surprised the damage she could do with her bare hands, but she couldn't deflect blaster bolts without a weapon.

"I knew I recognized you the moment I first laid eyes on you, Felicity Sage," Darth Callidus said as Felicity approached, "I would assume then that the boy is Certh Kol-Rekali. My associates and I appear to be in the presence of celebrities... Or at least that's what I would say had either of you done anything of note."

Finally, he turned around to look at her through red eyes. Felicity balked at the face that was twisted and scarred by the dark side, the price of any Sith who sought to obtain power. "No, it is your family name that makes you famous and nothing more." He stopped then to consider his words. "Though you are not without your potential," he continued, "The well of power that resides within you runs deep indeed."

"I wouldn't know," Felicity said finally.

The Sith scowled at her. "Humility is a failing of the Jedi. This would be the first of your flaws I would endeavor to fix had I any desire of actually turning you."

"Then why am I here? Why keep us alive?"

"You are alive because of your name," he replied, "The secrecy of our mission is paramount to its success and too many powerful Jedi would sense your passing. I know well the devotion you Sage's share for family," he almost spit that word out.

"Oookay, so why did you bring me here?"

"To know my enemy," he said simply, then he beckoned for her to step closer.

Felicity glanced back at Darth Kalos and his mercenary escort then at the countless number of men and women busily manning their stations. If she attacked their leader could she take them all? With a moment's hesitation she finally took a step forward and closed the distance between her and Callidus. When she was within arm's reach she prepared to make her move but before she could Callidus somehow moved even faster. He grabbed her by the arm and pulled her off balance. Then he tripped her, half spinning her about before forcing her onto her knees and placing his palm firmly against her forehead. What followed was a pain the likes of which she had never experienced before. Her screams filled the entire room and opposite her she could see Darth Kalos watching her in shock. He had taken an involuntary step forward, perhaps intent on saving her but his loyalty to his master held him at bay.

The pain continued for some time and Felicity could feel Darth Callidus inside her head poking around, forcing his way into the dark recesses of her mind. Finally it was over and she collapsed to the floor, slipping in and out of unconsciousness. "I have what I need," Callidus announced before gesturing for Kalos and his men to step forward, "Take her back to her cell."

Kalos nodded to the four mercenaries standing beside him who walked forward and unceremoniously scooped up Felicity from the floor. Before leaving the bridge the younger Sith fixed his master with a cold stare making sure he took notice of his disapproval. Finally, with a flourish of his cape he turned on his heels and followed Felicity and the mercs out the door. Felicity was only barely conscious on her way back to the cell but she saw something then, a glimmer of hope that their situation wasn't entirely futile. She tried to open her mouth to speak but could barely muster the energy to do more than whisper. Kalos watched her out of the corner of his eye as they walked but said nothing. Once she was secured in her cell he left her without another word. Certh watched her with a look of concern in his eye and asked if she was alright. Felicity's head was still swimming and her vision was spotty but she managed to get out three words.

"Cult of... Shadow."

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Re: The Reckoning

Post by Pryde » Thu Jun 05, 2014 6:30 pm

Jonas Dax leaned over the shoulder of the Antarian Ranger sitting in front of him and stared out the viewport. The enemy ship was some distance away orbiting around the planet Dagobah. They had not yet noticed their presence which Jonas considered to be a blessing. Floating silently in the void of space the Jedi watched as a shuttle departed from the larger ship and headed towards the surface. Jonas reached out with the Force to probe the smaller vessel but did not feel the presence of either Felicity or Certh. "They're still on the ship," he said aloud, "We're going to have to board it to rescue them. Get us in close," he said to the pilot and then he stood and moved to the back of the shuttle. The other Jedi joined him at the airlock preparing to board the enemy vessel and rescue their wayward padawans...

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Re: The Reckoning

Post by Archangel » Fri Jun 06, 2014 12:01 pm

Feldar moved to join the Jedi, but Jonas held up a hand. "You're staying here," the older Jedi ordered.

"But I can help!" Feldar objected, incensed. "I can help you find them, get them out! It was my mistake that let them get captured--I won't let this happen again!"

Jonas didn't know what Feldar was talking about, again, but he remained firm. "I won't have another Padawan lost. Stay here with the Rangers, and cover our extraction."

"Coming in hot!" the Ranger pilot warned. Their vessel had been detected, and laser fire flitted across the shields. The Rangers' evasive maneuvers were good, but not perfect; the ship shuddered under the graze as they came closer to the large craft.

Feldar glanced out the window and confirmed that it was, in fact, a modified Tartan patrol cruiser. "At least let me on the ship!" he protested. "I can slice into their systems, narrow your search! I might even be able to reroute power to lock down the doors! Let me do something!"

Jonas pointed Feldar to a console at the back of the shuttle. "Whatever you're going to do, do it from there. You're not setting foot on that ship."

The Chadra-Fan heard the thrusters blare as the ship rotated on two axes, bringing its airlock in line with an external port. The Rangers had wisely avoided the landing bay, Feldar thought, where--no doubt--many mercenaries would have been waiting for their assault. He listened to the hiss-chunk of a successful airlock seal, and then Jonas and the Jedi stepped through; the door slammed shut behind them. A chunk-hiss followed, and Feldar suspected they had cut through the enemy airlock, resulting in a burst of equalizing pressure. The rodentine Jedi was dejected, but had not lost hope of helping; he sat down at the indicated console and set up an interface with the cruiser's computer. It was surprisingly easy to communicate with the other system--the Sith had almost no active security programs. Feldar wondered if they had been powered down, hoping to go unnoticed--or if they had not expected a digital attack. He took advantage, and began scanning for power drains--something to contain Jedi would have to be powerful--and troop movements. He tapped into the vessel's comm system and started listening to their chatter.

They were aware, he noted, of Jonas' location, and the location of the escape ship. How could they not be? Even if they were too close for external sensors, a blasted airlock was pretty obvious on internal sensors. Feldar punched in some ghost data, trying to distract the mercenaries; he set off airlock klaxons in three other locations, suggesting that more vessels were attacking. He indicated pressure loss in the hangar bay, prompting its evacuation and causing a minor panic. He did his best to sow seeds of discord among the mercenaries. All the while, he searched for the power drain, and the location of his missing friends.

At last, he found it. Reaching out with the Force, he confirmed his suspicions: Felicity and Certh were there. He checked the sensors for the Jedi from his new ship: they were headed in the right direction (probably from their own sense through the Force), but by the worst possible route. The corridor they had chosen, appearing the most direct, actually veered toward starboard, where it passed the mercenary barracks and a large mess hall. Feldar also noted a contingent of units moving down from the bridge--he still had a vague sense of the presence of the Sith in the system, and he wondered if any were still on board the ship. Jonas might fare poorly indeed if he came up against a Sith Lord--but he was a Jedi, and he would manage. Feldar needed to get to Felicity and Certh.

The Rangers had their weapons ready and were watching the airlock as well as their own sensors. They did not seem afraid, and Feldar took solace in that. Gripping his lightsaber tightly in his mechanical hand, he ducked past them and through the airlock. They tried to object, but he closed the door behind him; they ought to be safe, with all the havoc he wreaked upon the Sith ship's systems. He heard them yelling, even through the heavy exterior door, but he ignored them: he had to get to his friends. Hopefully, the two Rangers would notify Jonas and the others about the dangers they faced; he had left his console connected and running for that reason.

He ran down the corridor, ducking into an access hatch. Jonas would not have thought to take this route, but it led to the holding cells far more directly than the route past the barracks. His path was uneventful; at one point, he nearly bowled himself into a rank of mercenaries, but caught himself in the shadows as they charged past, looking for action. He measured his pace after that, proceeding more slowly, until at last he came near the cells. Two guards were standing by; if there were others, they must have charged off when the ship was attacked.

But Feldar knew that he could not take even two guards in a fight. He decided he had to trick them; reaching out with the Force, he probed into their minds, which opened to him rather easily. They were mercenaries, but not particularly strong-willed ones. He suggested the notion that their shift was over, and it was time to return to their bunks. He saw progress when one of them yawned. At last, at his prodding, they lowered their weapons and stumbled off down the corridor. Feldar squeaked with joy, a little too loudly. He heard a commotion down the corridor, and knew the jig was up. Darting forward, he punched the door controls, hoping there was no need for security.

But, of course, there was. They were prison cells, after all. He spent a few precious seconds trying to slice in, then gave up and went all for it: he activated his lightsaber, and thrust the blade into the controls.

The door reacted violently. It slammed open, but just as Feldar was about to pass through, it slammed shut again. He squeaked again as he dodged back from the heavy durasteel edges, pounding against each other a whisker's length from his wiry frame. The door slammed open again as mercenaries came charging around the bend in the corridor. Feldar gulped, and knew he had no other choice. Trusting to the Force, he charged the open door and leaped through it. The heavy door nearly took his toe-claws when it shut again. Feldar stabbed the controls on this side of the door, too, and it stayed shut. He panted with relief, trying to catch his breath, as he surveyed the room where Felicity and Certh were being held. Seeing the two other Jedi held tight in force cages, the little rodent grinned, and awkward, toothy expression. "Hi, guys!"

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Re: The Reckoning

Post by Pryde » Thu Jun 12, 2014 11:57 am

"Feldar," Felicity cried, happy to see her friend, "I'm so glad you're here!"

The little rodent set about releasing them from the bonds and as soon as she was free Felicity rubbed her sore muscles. They had been hanging there for hours both before and after her interrogation by the Cult leader. At some point after she fully regained consciousness Certh had asked her how she knew Callidus was a member of the Cult of Shadow and she explained that he had used an interrogation technique on her that Sivter had developed. Up until now no one was sure if anyone other than Sivter was capable of using it.

"We have to find Jonas and the others," Feldar said. He stood near the far door keeping an eye out for any more mercenaries or Sith.

"Who," Felicity asked.

"He's leading the group that was sent to rescue us. He and that other Jedi were going the wrong way so I...," he tried to explain but Felicity cut him off.

"They're going to take us back to the temple, aren't they?"

Feldar looked at her but he didn't have an answer. Jonas never really made it clear what his intentions were.

"We can't go back," Felicity pleaded with him, "When Darth Callidus was in my mind I saw into his. I don't think I was supposed to but whatever it is they're looking for it's powerful and very dangerous and they think it's on Dagobah! We have to get down there!"

"Felicity, they have our weapons," Certh told her.

"We'll find new ones," Felicity insisted, "Trust me!"

She hurried out the door before the others could reply. Certh and Feldar called after her but she was already around the corner and out of sight. With nothing left to do they followed her. The little girl was surprisingly fast but Certh could easily keep pace with her. Feldar, on the other hand, was having trouble keeping up so when Certh finally caught up to Felicity he stopped her and pulled her to the side of the hallway while they waited for Feldar.

"Where are you going," he whispered sharply at her.

"This way," Felicity indicated with a finger, "When they were taking me to the bridge I saw escape pods along the way. We can use them to get to Dagobah."

Certh stared at her but the girl had already made up her mind. Finally he nodded, "Alright, but we have to move more carefully. I'll lead the way."

As soon as Feldar caught up with them they continued down the hallway more slowly this time. They found the escape pods where Felicity had said they were but there was a problem. Standing in front of the pods were four large mercenaries armed with E-11 blaster rifles. Certh leaned carefully around the corner to count them, speaking quietly to the others.

"There are four of them," he said, "and Feldar is the only one with a weapon. We need a plan."

Finally, he looked back at Feldar and Felicity and noticed the absence of the latter. "Where's Felicity he asked," and almost as soon as he voiced the words he heard a scuffle followed by blaster fire, some more startled cries and then silence. When he looked back around the corner the four mercenaries were on the ground with Felicity standing over them, two blaster rifles in her hands. She handed one to Certh and kept the other for herself.

"Come on," she said, turning her back to the others and then jumping into the escape pod. When she was seated and buckled in she turned to look back at the others, "We better hurry."

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Mir
KING OF STRONG STYLE
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Re: The Reckoning

Post by Mir » Sun Jun 15, 2014 4:36 pm

Mahana Sira, disgraced former Jedi Knight, former NRI operative, and current Antarian Ranger lackey, looked around as she surveyed the room that she currently found herself in. Despite still not having a lightsaber, she had managed to subdue and take down all of the mercenaries that she had been up against. Her training in fighting had been good, and over the years, the experience that she had picked up had given the edge when it came to mot fighters. Mercenaries they were, effective they had not been.

“Mahana, come in.”

She reached down for the commlink that was strapped to her hip, with a curse. Getting too used to having a watcher, which was the problem. When she had been with NRI and before Near Indosa, Mahana had had watchers, but nothing as close as it was now. The fact that she was getting comfortable with this change was a problem. Though she didn’t have anything against the Jedi in charge. He seemed rather straight-laced and by the books.

“Jonas, this is Mahana, I’ve cleared the room. Continuing to move to…wait a second.” She said and paused. “I think I’ve found them. I’m picking up on Certh’s signature in the Force.” She said. It was a similar feel to that of Rach and Ember, and she knew the Rekalis’ quite well, all things considered. “I’m going for them.”

“Mahana, wait. We move as a team.” Jonas said, but she’d already lowered the commlink, the last part of the sentence barely made audible by the commlink before she switched it off.

The goal was to get the kids back. That was why she was here.

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

Certh only nodded as he turned and held the rifle up, providing cover so that Feldar could properly strap himself in. He was about to turn around when more mercenaries came around the corner. Their eyes met that of the young man’s and both sides realized that this wasn’t going to end well. The mercenaries’ weapons snapped up and they started firing. Backing up, he started firing back, the blaster bolts scorching by him, and hitting against the wall behind him.

“Certh, move!”

“I am trying.” He replied to Feldar’s squeak.

He watched as around the corner, someone came with a blaster rifle in hand, firing a trio of shots that slammed into the back of one of the mercenaries. Instead of trying to identify his savior, he turned and dove into the escape pod, landing at the feet of the other two padawans, already strapped in. Leaving the blaster rifle on the floor, Certh got into one of the seats and strapped himself in, as Felicity hit the button to get them out of there.

He barely made out the face of Mahana Sira as the escape pod detached itself.

They were free.

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Pryde
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Re: The Reckoning

Post by Pryde » Mon Jun 16, 2014 7:44 pm

"Mahana! Damn it, answer your com," Jonas grumbled to himself. He'd been trying to contact her ever since she had disconnected from him and started moving on her own. Now he was worried about her. He knew she was capable, she'd proven that plenty of times but a Jedi without a lightsaber? Facing the odds they were facing it would have been better had they moved as a team. The plan had only worked this far because they had the element of surprise but that window was swiftly closing.

"Jonas," Mahana's voice cut through the com, "I found the kids but they're--not here."

Not here? What the hell is that supposed to mean? "Care to elaborate?"

"They used an escape pod and they're heading for the planet. For the moment they're safe."

Jonas quietly cursed to himself. That was not the news he wanted to hear. Dagobah was a dangerous place for an inexperienced padawan and a disgraced Jedi. "Just how exactly did they reach an escape pod?"

"Feldar was with them."

Another bit of news Jonas didn't want to hear. He had misgivings about bringing Feldar along for the ride but their mission mandated haste and he didn't have time to take him to safety. Now those three were somewhere on Dagobah and finding them was going to be practically impossible. Due to the thick fog around the planet visibility was practically non-existent which meant spotting them from the sky was out of the question and as if that weren't enough the planet was over grown with forests and marshlands making travel along the ground even more difficult.

"Head for the shuttle," he said finally, "We'll just have to find them on the ground."

**********

The landing on Dagobah wasn't quite as smooth as Felicity would have liked. Almost the instant the pod hit atmosphere its sensors went haywire. The thick fog surrounding the planet made it impossible to see where they were heading and the overgrowth along the surface made for a rough landing, bashing and battering their pod as they crashed through the trees. As luck would have it they landed in marsh water, throwing up a column of water almost ten meters tall. Almost immediately the pod began to sink deeper and sensing the danger the three Jedi quickly unfastened themselves from their chairs. Certh hit the button for the door release only to frown when the mechanism malfunctioned.

"Stand back," Felicity said.

"No wait," Certh tried to tell her but Felicity had already summoned up enough force to pry the door free and let it go.

The pod's door burst outward and water rushed into the pod, filling it quickly. The three had some trouble swimming to the surface as water fell in on top of them. Certh, the strongest of them, grabbed the other two and powered his way to the surface of the water dragging them along. Once they were all on dry land he turned to check on the others, all three of them were coughing to clear the water from their lungs.

"Well, we're here," Feldar said finally, "What now?"

Felicity's face turned beat red, she didn't have an answer for him. "I don't know," she admitted, "I hadn't thought that far ahead."

"I don't suppose that glimpse you had into Callidus' mind gave you any sort of heading," Certh asked.

Felicity shook her head. "Not really, but we could always follow the trees, right?"

"Follow the trees?" Certh said with a raised eyebrow.

"Yeah, you know, moss always grows on the south side of a tree."

He shook his head. "I don't think that will work for us here and it's the north side."

Felicity mentally chided herself. "Okay, so what do you suggest?"

The boy sighed, "Well, we could try to sense their presence with the Force."

Again Felicity felt embarrassed. That was one skill she wasn't very good at. "I don't know if I can," she said, "I'm not very good at meditation. Whenever Faye tells us to do it I just fall asleep, but I've gotten really good at sleeping while sitting up," she added sheepishly.

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