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 Post subject: Star Wars: Eradication
PostPosted: Wed Aug 20, 2014 9:24 pm 
Resident of the Kingdom of Eternal Cockjobbery
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It is a dark time in the galaxy. War has dragged on between the Republic and the Sith Empires for centuries.

With all galactic civilization on the brink of collapse, formal and informal truces have come into being, as Sith warlords and the Jedi Chancellors both desperately search for the elusive means to bring final victory.

In the shadowy reaches of the Gray Band, sinister forces are at work. The hidden secrets of the past may finally end the great wars, or they may condemn the galaxy to eternal darkness...

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"'Flammable' and 'inflammable' have the same meaning! This language is insane!"
GIVE ME COFFEE AND I WILL ALLOW YOU TO LIVE!- Frigid
"Ork 'as no automatic code o' survival. 'is partic'lar distinction from all udda livin' gits is tha necessity ta act inna face o' alternatives by means o' dakka."
I created the sound of madness, wrote the book on pain


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PostPosted: Wed Aug 20, 2014 9:42 pm 
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The Jedi Order doesn't have anything so crass as punishment detains. Officially. Unofficially, however, very little else would explain Corac's presence on such a shithole world and in such a hellscape city as New Altos. Even then, that could be excused if there were a mission of note involved. Investigating any of the myriad criminal syndicates that touch upon Vaganus from time to time, perhaps. But no. Stripped of all pretense and rhetoric, his mission simply boiled down to 'tripwire.'

Hang out at the fringes of nowhere, and see if he recognized any faces from his time among the Sith.

On one hand, it was at least theoretically a good idea. On the other...well, no one was really all that clear on what he should do if he should happen to see anything familiar. Certainly not win a fight against it; on that, the Jedi Order's lack of confidence in Corac's ability to hold his own in that arena mirrored his own. Call home and report it? Sure, fine--and then what? Support was a long, long way away, if it even bothered arriving at all. Lay low, watch, take notes, and then get dressed down for not doing anything to stop whatever he saw? ...Yeah, most likely.

A hotel would have been too obvious, and expensive over the long term. Besides, a long-term transient living and loitering around a shitty hotel would be more likely to draw attention. Instead, Corac sleeps in a rented apartment above one of the 'city's' bars, and roams the city, keeping to the shadows and doing his best to at least look as if he were trying to keep up with his totally-not-a-punishment-detail. A heavy brown robe would be too obvious, and too damned hot during the interminable daylight anyway; during the month-long days, he wears a light-weight, flowing coat, one that easily permits airflow while still providing shielding from the blazing sun. By now, it was a dingy light grey; it probably started life white.

Vaganus. Totally not a punishment detail. Not at all.

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PostPosted: Wed Aug 20, 2014 10:43 pm 
The Artist formerly known as Rhoenix
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Ah, New Altos - a city, in the barest and most generous definitions of the word, situated as an island amidst a highly unforgiving landscape. The planet it sat upon, Vaganus, was such a bright spot in the galactic tour guides that entries for this planet actually mentioned "bright sun, a scenic planetary ring, and many varieties of hardy and unique wildlife."

Corvin wondered idly if the aggressively upbeat tour guide writer in question was talking about New Altos, or the planet itself, as the transport ship he had paid for passage upon slowed its descent, and prepared to land.

His former teacher amongst the Jedi, Master Koros, had talked to him about this mission at some length before he left. Being that Corvin was now enjoying his first year as a newly-minted Jedi, and as of yet had no Padawan to teach and look after, this left him suited to investigate certain situations either noted from intelligence, or from the Force-enhanced intuition of the more aware Jedi in the order. This mission of his to Vaganus was one of the latter.

All that was known thus far was that the Force seemed... expectant, almost anticipatory about this place, in this time. Few were certain as to why, only that it somehow seemed important to near-term future events in some way. Corvin had accepted the mission after some discussion, and on the way there, had studied the planet, it's inhabitants, and it's overly optimistic entries in the galactic planetary database.

Then again, he thought with wry amusement, if it were so obvious as to what was going to happen here or why, then he wouldn't be here.

He disembarked with the others, dressed not in his usual Jedi robes and clothing that he had become quite fond of over time, but in more casual clothing that identified him as a traveler, and little else. The front pockets of his pants held both his lightsaber hilts, within the voluminous pockets so as to not attract attention. His belt held a holstered blaster pistol, more for appearance than anything else - he'd fired it a few times at the range to make sure it worked and shot relatively straight, but little else. A pack hanging from its strap across his chest and right shoulder held a few changes of clothes. In short, little about his appearance would seem out of the ordinary here.

That said, Corvin swept the spaceport with his eyes as he walked through, using the casual, though curious glances of a tourist as he moved toward the exit of the spaceport, and out into the city proper.

Knowing that his stay here was of an undetermined duration, he looked around through local listings for small apartments, and after two or three hours, settled on an apartment for rent that had been situated above a junk shop. He talked some with the junk shop owner, Heti, who was renting it out, discovering that the shop owner had lost his assistant about a Vaganusi year ago, and had been having to work longer hours just to keep pace since then. Corvin casually mentioned that while he was in New Altos on business, he wasn't sure how busy that business would keep him, and so he'd be willing to help out at times - to which Heti seemed thrilled.

After getting the first rent payment out of the way and setting his meager amount of possessions in the apartment, Corvin took a scout's tour of New Altos, getting to know a bit more about the city he'd likely be getting to know quite well. Getting an iced caf from a local diner, he walked with it for a few hours, just seeing the sights, and getting a feel for the rhythms and people of this city. Like most cities, those patterns were unique - but like most cities, those patterns could be learned and eventually, predicted.

It was getting to be early evening before Corvin walked back to what would be his home for the foreseeable future, and spent an hour with Heti in the junk shop, helping the older man to be prepared for tomorrow. Heti was somewhat surprised and suspicious both when Corvin blithely turned down an offer to pay him for his time, but Heti seemed placated when Corvin asked for a rent discount if he helped out enough during a given month.

So far, a rather uneventful first day here, Corvin mused to himself as he sent off a quick message to Master Koros to let her know that he had landed at New Altos, found a place to stay, and was now beginning to investigate matters here. He was almost expecting to encounter at least one robbery attempt today - it had been a pleasant surprise not to.

An unknown mystery on a relatively remote world - he could definitely be doing worse for himself, Corvin thought with amusement.

_________________
"Before you diagnose yourself with depression or low self-esteem, make sure that you are not, in fact, just surrounded by assholes."

- William Gibson


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PostPosted: Wed Aug 20, 2014 10:46 pm 
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"What was that?" Mylus asked.

A stick like droid with four arms answered. "I believe that noise was one of main breaker units on the hyperdrive exploding and the ship being automatically dropped into real space before the hyperdrive melts down."

"That's what I'm afraid of," said Mylus. The renegade got out of his cockpit and walked toward the rear of the ship. "Come with me."

"Of course sir. Who else is going to repair the unit?" The droid fastidiously stepped over stain left by the former captain of the Pacer being cut from shoulder to hip diagonally by Mylus's saber. The droid followed his master through the common room, edging carefully around the blood stains, around the hyperspace transmitter and down into the engine spaces.

Smoke and sparks drifted from a board attached to one of the hyperspace engines. "How bad?" asked Mylus.

"Acting master," said CY-ZR. The droid pulled the board and examined the hyperdrive. It tossed the board over his shoulder. "I have good news and bad news master."

"Bad news."

"We're going to need to replace the remaining breakers or we'll be stranded."

"The good news."

"The other three will probably hold for a jump or two and they're easy to make."

"We're near the Gray Zone right?"

"Yes master."

"Plot a jump to the easiest to reach place that is likely to have them."

"And fix this mess."

"Of course master."

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It's not that I'm unforgiving, it's that most of the people who wrong me are unrepentant assholes.


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PostPosted: Thu Aug 21, 2014 4:29 am 
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"New Altos? Really?"

"It meets your requirements master. Of course, if you wish to travel to another location you must merely tell me the name and I will program in the destination."

Mylus Kairn studied the display. The planet was a radiation death zone and the local fauna was mean. The local flora was sparse. The only port was a pit of scum and villainy. And yet there was something . . . something. Maybe nothing.

"Vaganus."

"Yes master. It's the closest jump from here. Only a one in ten chance of losing another breaker by my estimation. Of course we can lose one more breaker and still retain hyper jump capacity."

"No, this, this will do. Vaganus, New Altos. Take us there."

"As you command master. Will you be meditating?"

"Yes."

"Why? It doesn't seem to help."

"That's enough from you."

"Yes master."

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PostPosted: Thu Aug 21, 2014 11:20 am 
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"Well, boys, there it is, New Altos spaceport."

There was a derisive Blllrrrt from beside her, and Trysana Jrobb grinned, the Orduin's Exalt circling in orbit awaiting landing instructions from below. "You're right 2N-T3, we've seen better," she repied, slurring the Astromech's name as 'twenty-three'. Behind her, she heard the sound of metal steps.

"Oh, dear, that is a horrid-looking place. I rather doubt I'll find any of the ingredients I want -there-," came the protest from her other droid, 8F-O9. Like many protocol droids, he had a rather stuffy uppercrust accent. He gave a long-suffering sigh. "How will I ever keep you fed and healthy, mistress, if you continue to take us to places such as this?"

"You'll manage, AforNine", she said, again slurring the numerics into a name. "You may not have time for shopping, it all depends on how soon our contact shows." She had a feeling it would be a fast in-and-out, the up-front had been surprisingly generous, and once she delivered the passenger it would be higher. Only someone really wanting off planet fast would be putting up that kind of money.

Bellbingdingliden

"Ok, good, we have our parking permit. Take us in, Twenty-three," Trysana said, allowing the astromech to once again act as co-pilot. He had a deft touch with landings.

**********************

Trysana left the ship, dressed for the Vaganus weather under the dome: sunshades and a lightweight robe to protect from the sunrays, blouse and trousers over comfortable boots, and her usual utility belt and blaster on her hip. The bright sunlight made her hair shine silver-white, and her skin gleam a mossy green. The Life Tattoos on her face was the last clue to identify her as Mirialan, as the pattern of the tiny diamonds marked important events in her life. They crossed her high cheekbones, over and up the bridge of her nose to a cluster in the center of her forehead, half-hidden by a brush of bangs that escaped the long braid of hair.

"Are you certain you should be leaving the ship, Mistress? The atmosphere inside this dome will do terrible things for your skin!"

"Better than being outside in the open, AforNine." she replied. Sometimes the droid's fussing was annoying, but she did enjoy the way he could cook something out of even the strangest of ingredients and make it tasty. He also gave great massages and insisted on braiding Trysana's hair. There was something soothing and luxurious about getting your hair brushed and braided, even if by a droid. She'd really gotten a bargain when she found him listed under "For Best Offer".

It only took a couple hours for AforNine to go through all the markets, tsking at the lack of variety and wailing at the prices charged for even the simpliest items, which always amused Trysana greatly. However, the droid was a shrewd negoitator and he soon had several bags of what looked like vegetables and meat he assured her was not from vermin. She took his word for it, as he'd been speaking to various species in their language, sometimes heatedly, before the purchases were made. "Mistress, I will carry these back to the Orduin. Would you please change your mind and return with me?"

"You know the deal," Trysana answered, shaking her head. "Once down, I get a night away from your cooking, and I can get as drunk as I want."

"But I have told you before how very bad the food in those ... establishments .. are for your overall health! Dipping a food in batter and then into boiling oil is dangerous to the cardiopulimanary systems of 73% of the hominoid population!" he protested, even as he knew she would once again ignore his warnings. By the grin on her face, AforNine could tell she was having this conversation only to hear him protest. "Well. Fine. I shall return to the ship. However, should you be in need of medication for over-embibment in the morning, I shall remind you that I did warn you of the danger."

Trysana chuckled as the droid toddled off with the bags, before pulling out her commlink. "Twenty-three, 'Nine's on his way back to you." There was an eruption of Binary as the Astrodroid answered. "Yes, he's fussing about me going to the bars. Just avoid him for a bit." The answer was a drawn out fart, and drew a laugh from Trysana. "Just keep an eye on the ship, and let me now if anyone is trying to reach me. Trys out."

Tucking the comlink way, Trysana started walking out of the markets and back towards the starport, where the bars tend to cluster. AforNine might hate the idea of it, but his description of deep fried meat had made Trysana suddenly craving just such a treat.

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PostPosted: Thu Aug 21, 2014 8:55 pm 
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"What a shit hole," muttered Mylus. "Looks like the Sith ran resource extraction operations for the last hundred years and then bombed the planet flat."

"Master the library banks indicate-"

"Don't bother, I read them," said Mylus. He looked down, out of the cockpit at the blasted and scarred rock below. Varangus could be picked out by the flickering ray shields that repelled the deadly stellar radiation.

The rogue Sith touched the controls and bent the Pacer's nose down toward the planet. The freighter was an ugly brick, slightly slimmer at the front and wider at the back. It was neither graceful nor aerodynamic, but it flew and it could take a beating. The carbon scoring on its hide was testimony to that.

Mylus edged the Pacer through the atmosphere on repulsers, heading to the spaceport on the edge of the city. It lacked hangers or docking bays or really much in the way of traffic control. A landing beacon and a droid assigning landing points on a projected grid were the extent of landing control.

"Proceed to area seventeen by nine," said the nasal whine of the droid at the control tower. The overlay map showed the backed landing field and the area that Kairn had been given. The surrounding ships were mostly rundown and battered.

"Master," said CY-ZR, "I have a bad feeling about this."

"I'll try to prevent them from breaking you down for parts."

"Thank you master. Given your propensity for disproportionate violence given even a minor provocation that is somewhat reassuring. That will not, however, reattach my primary motivator to by central processing circuits in the event I am attacked by scavengers."

"A risk you'll have to take," said Mylus as he extended the landing gear. The ship shuddered at touched down on the hard baked earth. "I saw what looked like a salvage yard near the landing field. Let's see what they have."

"Yes master."

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It's not that I'm unforgiving, it's that most of the people who wrong me are unrepentant assholes.


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PostPosted: Thu Aug 21, 2014 9:16 pm 
The Artist formerly known as Rhoenix
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Habits are funny things, Corvin mused to himself as he sleepily went about his morning routine. He was not a morning person, and never had been. However, a few years of early mornings with Master Koros made that nearly irrelevant, once he finally understood why she did.

The sun was barely peeping over the horizon as his caf finished brewing, and after taking a few grateful sips of the hot liquid, he began his morning workout. Though his particular workout routine had started as a duplicate of Master Koros', he had made changes over time, as he had learned other styles and understood more about them. In 45 minutes, he finished, and gratefully drank the rest of his caf.

Once had finished his cup, he sat down cross-legged and sank into a light meditation, letting his thoughts gently go as smoke in the breeze as he simply felt for what the Force might have to say. The expectant feeling surrounding this planet was certainly still there, only slightly more so; however, it wasn't any clearer than it had been the past week. So, as he rose from his meditation and stretched his limbs, he decided that he'd simply see the sights again, and then see if Hati needed an extra pair of hands today.

The city itself seemed amusingly subdued in the early morning, a far cry from most planets he'd now spent time on. With that said, he saw security forces walking along their route while talking casually, he saw parents escorting reluctant children to school, and he saw droids out performing their tasks, but few others. His walkabout took barely an hour, and by the time he arrived at Hati's shop, the larger alien had barely finished opening it up for business.

Hati looked rather surprised to see Corvin, but nodded a greeting nonetheless. "Mornin'. How is'ta?"

Corvin replied with a smile as he looked around. "Quiet, more so than I figured."

At this, Hati smirked. "T'aint many people who like risin' early. Especially here. C'mon in."

Corvin followed Hati inside, taking a few sips of his second caf cup as he did. "Thanks. Need any help this morning?"

Hearing Hati give a deep, disbelieving belly laugh was unexpected, to say the least. "Do Hutts act like assholes?"

Smirking at this, Corvin followed Hati into the semi-neat aisles of various cast-off parts for a huge variety of machines, smiling slightly as he recognized more than a few of them. He'd broken several speeders, ships, and other vehicles over time, and necessity had given him the impetus to learn how to fix them himself.

He kept following the larger, four-armed Hati into the back, where two broken-down speeders were kept under tarps. "Well, if Ah can sell either o' these here in a good, workin' condition, it'll let me get creds to get some more equipment I need. Can ye help with that?"

"Yeah, easy enough," Corvin nodded as he inspected the speeders, setting down his caf cup to inspect them properly. "Sure, I can take care of these," he said after a few minutes. "I'll let you know when I'm done."

The happy look on Hati's face nearly made that offer entirely worth it, in Corvin's eyes. "Yer a lifesaver, kid. If ya need anythin', just holler. I'll hear ya in the front."

"No problem," Corvin said, as he grabbed a few parts, and his toolkit, and got right to work. Meditations weren't always sitting or being still, he mused to himself as he settled into a comfortable rhythm and pace. Restoring something to a good, working condition was its own meditation, and one he had truly learned to enjoy.

_________________
"Before you diagnose yourself with depression or low self-esteem, make sure that you are not, in fact, just surrounded by assholes."

- William Gibson


Josh wrote:
What? There's nothing weird about having a pet housefly. He smuggles cigarettes for me.


Last edited by rhoenix on Thu Aug 21, 2014 9:27 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Thu Aug 21, 2014 9:24 pm 
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Vegus Three

Henrik leaned back against the chair beneath him and settled his eyes on the creature that sat opposite him. Its name was Maldeth N'lir and he was even now uncertain about to the specifics of his genetic lineage. In the end, it mattered little. Maldeth was one of his first contacts when he put aside the path of the Jedi and embarked on his new path. He had not put aside the teachings of the Jedi of course his priorities had simply shifted.

Maldeth's Basic was excellent and they had quickly come to an understanding. Maldeth and a handful of others acted like agents. They screened requests for his services and selected those that met specific criteria. Initially, the criteria had been broad as his name was not known and he had no reputation to leverage. After a dozen or so successful deliveries however he was able to narrow down the sort of work that he was willing to perform. Currently, his services were in demand enough given the state of the galaxy that he could afford to be highly selective. He hardly ever did work directly. He worked through intermediaries almost exclusively. It was with that thought in mind that his lips parted and he found himself speaking.

"Have you heard anything new?" He said. He did not need to specify his query. Maldeth was one of the few that knew him well enough to instantly understand the information that he sought.

"Nothing." Maladeth said.

Henrik shifted on his seat and reached for the glass that serenely rested atop a small table. The glass was brought to his lips and the entirety of its contents drained. The fluid was orange in color and burned their way down his throat before reaching his stomach. He allowed himself a moment to enjoy the warmth that usually accompanied and the taste of peppers and cloves. The glass was put down on the top of the table and his eyes settled on those of Maldeth.

"I am doing everything that I can Henrik but your target does not seem to be found." Maldeth placated.

"You and yours specialize in things that do not wish to be found." Henrik accused as he waived for his drink to be replaced with another.

"Just as you specialize on moving things quickly and safely. However, the task that you have requested of me is not so simple as simply moving an object from one place to another Henrik. This...woman is remarkably adept at keeping herself hidden. If she makes an error, one of my colleagues will hear of it and you will have another clue. However, until then the only thing that I can offer you is the assurance that we are doing everything that we can."

Henrik listened to Maldeth's every word. By the time that he had finished his glass had been replaced and his left hand reached for it, the glass lifted from the table as his eyes examined the orange content. Silence descended upon the table for a moment until he spoke once more.

"I...apologize Maldeth." He hesitated for a moment the glass brought to his lips as he sipped and placed the glass down on the table once more. "I know that I am asking a lot of you. I would trust no one else with this." He sighed.

Maldeth nodded and his body language shifted from its previous guarded nature. "Frustration is an emotion I am keenly familiar with Henrik. You will find her."

Henrik nodded and drank once more. "Yes. I am just not sure what I will find when I do."

Maldeth remained silent alien eyes watching him intently.

"I will be in this world for three more days. If you can secure a buyer by that point in time, I will pick up the cargo. If you do not, we will have to arrange a meeting." Henrik said.

Maldeth nodded. "There have been a few inquiries although they are still in the process of being vetted. I predict that we will have something before you leave."

"Good." Henrik said draining the contents of his glass and placing it down on the edge of the table. He motioned for the waiter and promptly paid his bill. "I will wait for your message." He nodded towards Maldeth and stood in one smooth motion before leaving. Maldeth waited patiently and three and half minutes later a female Twi'lek sat opposite him.

"That was Henrik?" The Twi'lek asked.

"Yes." replied Maldeth.

"He is not as impressive as I expected."

"You were not sitting next to him."

"Is he as a good as they say?"

"Better. He is the best pilot I have ever seen. No other of our other clients come close and he knows it."

"For a minute there I thought that I would have to intervene."

"I am glad you did not. Henrik would not harm me, we have too much history."

"Are you sure about that?"

Maldeth hesitated for only a moment. "Yes."

The Twi'lek smiled at the hesitation. "Your confidence is reassuring."

Maldeth sighed and reached for his own glass the purple contents drained. "If you are going to be my bodyguard you will have to master the ability to read negotiations such as this. For your first day watching my back, I am satisfied."

The Twi'lek smiled briefly. "Where did he go?"

"To his ship I expect. This world offers few things that interest Henrik. Now come, we have another meeting to attend."

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"Not OP, therefore weakest." - Cynical Cat (May 2016)
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PostPosted: Thu Aug 21, 2014 11:09 pm 
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Aserak was bored. Jedi are not supposed to get bored. Not even just bored. On a place like Coruscant or even Tatooine, the currents of the force change in unpredictable and dynamic ways, even if nothing of import is going on, and even though Aserak has no facility for predicting where the currents will go. He can sense them on a moment by moment basis and sense the mood of their flow. Here, the flow of the currents is ever changing, but the sort of change was also stasis. Like background noise that just oscillates around a central point.

He had been on this hell-world for six months. Gone through the paranoid rigamarole of setting up a flat, docking his ship in the hangar, setting up a Signals Intelligenceapparatus, established trusted contacts (trusted because they could not remember the name or face of the person who paid them to collect information they transferred to him they knew not how and deliver false information to dead letter drops they thought was genuine) in the Port Authority. And so far, nothing. Absolutely nothing. No meaningful change in the ebb and flow of the force. No useful intelligence. He was starting to feel that the Master Precognitives in the Order had another misinterpreted vision, or had seized on a possible future that was averted by the actions of someone somewhere else in the Galaxy. It happened occasionally.

That is what he thought... until today. There was a perturbation in the force. Not a disturbance, but a change in the status quo. He recognized it immediately as an influx in Force Users. Getting more would require either getting eyes on, or focusing upon them.

Aserak elected to meditate, and gain a better picture of who and what he was dealing with.

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"Nothing in biology makes sense except in the light of evolution."
- Theodosius Dobzhansky

There is no word harsh enough for this. No verbal edge sharp and cold enough to set forth the flaying needed. English is to young and the elder languages of the earth beyond me. ~Frigid

The Holocaust was an Amazing Logistical Achievement~Havoc


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PostPosted: Fri Aug 22, 2014 12:37 am 
The Artist formerly known as Rhoenix
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As he worked on the first speeder, Corvin felt a few... echoes in the Force, as if a few pebbles had been dropped into a mostly-still pond.

He smirked to himself. He toned down the intensity of his Force signature some, but purposefully didn't hide it from others' senses.

With that done, he went back to working on the speeder. Things would likely get a bit more eventful soon.

_________________
"Before you diagnose yourself with depression or low self-esteem, make sure that you are not, in fact, just surrounded by assholes."

- William Gibson


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What? There's nothing weird about having a pet housefly. He smuggles cigarettes for me.


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PostPosted: Fri Aug 22, 2014 5:47 am 
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Mylus walked across the hard baked, lifeless earth to the junkyard. This place was too much like home, after the Sith conquered it. It lacked the extraction mega works, the towering machinery that tore into the planet's crust and extracted everything of use to the war machine, but the rest fit right in. Everything built quick and cheap out of whatever was left over, the parts of the planets populace not chained to the machines finding their lives as best they can in the shadow of the great machines.

The ray shields provided an eternal, flickering twilight. No true night here. He might get used it eventually. That or develop a killer migraine. He approached the scavenger yard shop.

It was a mid sized building of compacted earth covered in plaster. Not a bad choice. Cheap and thick enough to block a lot of rads if the shields failed. He entered the building. "Hello," he said.

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PostPosted: Fri Aug 22, 2014 9:21 am 
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A glassy-eyed Rodian looked up at Mylus' entry. He quickly cast aside the pad he'd been viewing without turning off the playback. From the wailing and gargling, the most reasonable assumption would either be mass murder or perhaps Rodian opera.

"Welcome to my fine shop, visitor," he said pleasantly, his bulbous eyes looking Mylus up and down. "It is my pleasure to serve you. What does the gentlebeing need?"

The opera hit a high, wailing burble, then faded down seemingly toward its conclusion. Then just as Mylus opened his mouth to speak it elevated into a fresh crashing crescendo of un-harmonic splendor.

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"'Flammable' and 'inflammable' have the same meaning! This language is insane!"
GIVE ME COFFEE AND I WILL ALLOW YOU TO LIVE!- Frigid
"Ork 'as no automatic code o' survival. 'is partic'lar distinction from all udda livin' gits is tha necessity ta act inna face o' alternatives by means o' dakka."
I created the sound of madness, wrote the book on pain


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PostPosted: Fri Aug 22, 2014 3:42 pm 
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"I need three Voldun XB-2 hyperspace breakers or their equivalents." The fourth, by some miracle, was actually in good condition. "I'll take four if I can get them."

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PostPosted: Fri Aug 22, 2014 4:41 pm 
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Aserak perceived. He sat in a lotus position in one of the interior rooms of his small apartment. Some Jedi like to use a Solarium for this sort of thing, but that left one open to being seen in meditation, and left one exposed to snipers while in a vulnerable position. There were also easy ways of engaging in physical surveillance when there was any sort of window for sound transmission or line of sight. Not as relevant for meditation, but he formed the habit of conducting essential business in the place he was most sure was not bugged (which was to say, not entirely certain was not bugged. Just pretty sure). This was it.

He was able to partially localize three ripples in the Force. Three particularly strong Nexi of the Force. One was of the deepest dark side of the force. Mostly fueled by anger. A roiling tumultuous cauldron of anger and hate. Stealth was not his plan, he could be reacquired and engaged at will. The others though were different matter. Both touched by the Dark Side, but not of it.Whether they were Jedi or of some other tradition he could not tell at his present remove. He would need to be closer. He could tell that one was confident and relaxed, and the other felt... morose and uncertain. He had to pick one to examine further, so he chose the confident one and headed in that direction, being careful to specifically shield himself from detection until contact was made.

He was heading toward a Junk Shop, owned by one Heti, he realized when he was getting closer. His target was in there... fixing speeders? Cover story? Maybe. As he got closer, he realized that was not the case

He could feel the young man's force signature dim, but still easy to detect. Was he trying to hide and bad at it? Oh wait, no. There it was. Smugness. He felt the others in system finally and wanted to see what happened. He was on a fishing expedition. Great. Another one of those self-satisfied Prescients. Insufferable. Though, Aserak was somewhat certain that he only thought that because he could not utilize that particular branch of precognition. There was some resentment there. He did his best to let it go and move on.

Aserak was half a block away and could feelthe smirk. His own emotions were locked down inside his head tighter than the data contained in a MILSPEC classified document retrieval computer. This one... leaked. Not much specifically, emotions he did not guard well enough for the most part, but some details slipped through. He was Jedi, though had not always been. The Dark Side still touched him, as it always would. Tempting him. Influencing him to fall. He was no Infiltrator. An Infiltrator would never let that much slip. They would be Vanilla to passive inspection, either because they would be tightly locked down, or actively projecting false information. You would only find them once they set a plan in motion the operational details of which they could not guard, as it would be separate from themselves. That, or they get caught in a spaceport lavatory with a long range communication system and a codebook. That did not happen often, but when it did it was treated like a Life Day celebration.

So he walked into the Junk Shop, noting that the Dark Side Tumult was closer, moving toward the city from the spaceport. Aserak was a Hortek, a rare species in this area. Yellow scales with black stripes, wearing a light brown shirt with a black vest, and trousers that could accommodate a tail. He was not visibly armed, though an astute person might notice a slight heavyness, barely noticeable with the vest, under his left armpit. It just did not hang the same way there.

"Good morning" he said to the proprietor. "I am looking for a replacement Navicomputer control board for a Lethisk class freighter, would you happen to have one in stock?"

That is what he said with a smile and his lips moving, also flashing razor sharp teeth. His smile was somewhat double edged, whether he wanted it to be or not. Both reassuring because he was smiling, and intimidating because Oh Dear What Big Teeth You Have. It was life.

What he said directly into Corvin's thoughts was another matter.

You, Corvin, are an Opsec Nightmare. Hello. I am Asarak Set, Jedi Knight, and if the Jedi Order had official station chiefs, you would be looking at him.

He intentionally projected irritation along with the word, then pointedly switched to a rather flat emotional projection which ended on something mischievous. Nothing was projected as speech, naturally. Instead, his end of the conversation happened in an instant, the entire content of whatever he send popped into Corvins' mind fully formed with all of the cadence intact.

You are the second of three arrivals in the past 24 hours. The first I am pretty sure WAS briefed. The other is a Raging Sith down by the spaceport. I may need your help to get him somewhere out of the public eye so he can be dealt with appropriately and safely for bystanders... Care to play Chase the Mynock?

_________________
"Nothing in biology makes sense except in the light of evolution."
- Theodosius Dobzhansky

There is no word harsh enough for this. No verbal edge sharp and cold enough to set forth the flaying needed. English is to young and the elder languages of the earth beyond me. ~Frigid

The Holocaust was an Amazing Logistical Achievement~Havoc


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PostPosted: Fri Aug 22, 2014 6:48 pm 
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Corvin felt a Light-aligned signature getting closer, and found it curious. Most signatures had subtle shifts, little nuances that could tell a story by itself. Few had hard edges, as if the bearer of that signature had attempted to forcibly alter key aspects of themselves at certain times.

More curious was how the bearer of said signature walked directly into shop, talked to the shop owner, and then directly contacted Corvin's mind.

Some users of the Force were born telepathic, and therefore had an early perceptive advantage over non-telepathic individuals when it came to learning how the Force can affect and influence a sapient mind. Thankfully, they had been willing to share their perspective over the centuries and millenia the Jedi had been around, and certain practices had arisen due to study over those things for the same millenia.

One of those things was to reinforce just how very dangerous it could be to initiate mental contact with someone you don't already know. It could allow a malicious user of the Force an immediate way to attack the mind, it could be used to send horrible visions, and could even be used to plant suggestions in the initiator's mind, hidden from view in the flow of mental communication.

Corvin was no master telepath, but had learned enough of etiquette and such from his Jedi Master, as well as several others he had learned from while at the Jedi temple. Suffice it to say, he was somewhat concerned by the first message sent his way: You, Corvin, are an Opsec Nightmare. Hello. I am Asarak Set, Jedi Knight, and if the Jedi Order had official station chiefs, you would be looking at him.

There was a moment of silence, presumably while the sender was speaking with Hati up front, and then it continued. You are the second of three arrivals in the past 24 hours. The first I am pretty sure WAS briefed. The other is a Raging Sith down by the spaceport. I may need your help to get him somewhere out of the public eye so he can be dealt with appropriately and safely for bystanders... Care to play Chase the Mynock?

Corvin finished tightening the engine manifold of the speeder before he replied. For an unofficial Jedi station chief, you're about as subtle as a herd of hungry rancor. Come on back, share a cup of caf with me, and let's discuss things like civilized beings.

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"Before you diagnose yourself with depression or low self-esteem, make sure that you are not, in fact, just surrounded by assholes."

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What? There's nothing weird about having a pet housefly. He smuggles cigarettes for me.


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PostPosted: Fri Aug 22, 2014 8:59 pm 
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Cynical Cat wrote:
"I need three Voldun XB-2 hyperspace breakers or their equivalents." The fourth, by some miracle, was actually in good condition. "I'll take four if I can get them."


"I am very regretful not to be able to offer you the XB-2, but I do have the Hryan F-3L, which offers similar capacity and utilizes an identical socket system to the inferior XB-2 model of breaker. Two are new in their package, one has been reconditioned by my well-programmed droid. If that would satisfy I will bring them up for you, gentlebeing."

The Rodian drummed his spatulate fingers on the countertop, practically vibrating in what seemed to be an eager-to-please manner.

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"'Flammable' and 'inflammable' have the same meaning! This language is insane!"
GIVE ME COFFEE AND I WILL ALLOW YOU TO LIVE!- Frigid
"Ork 'as no automatic code o' survival. 'is partic'lar distinction from all udda livin' gits is tha necessity ta act inna face o' alternatives by means o' dakka."
I created the sound of madness, wrote the book on pain


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PostPosted: Fri Aug 22, 2014 9:29 pm 
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"CY-ZR?" asked Mylus, turning to his tech droid.

"Those models will suffice master. They are, however, significantly more expensive. If you had resold my former owners shock collars and restraint gear instead of destroying it, our financial resources would be-."

"That's enough." Mylus turned back to the proprietor. "Yes, please do."

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PostPosted: Sat Aug 23, 2014 12:53 am 
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Rediir Cantina
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Mid-Rim


“Dan karau clielal ar ootay?” «You want passage to where?» The Twi’lek’s eyes flashed at the robed Kel Dor, flicking over to the silver protocol droid standing next to him as he translated.

“Vagus Three, near the gray zone.” «Vagus Clan, tlonheh ji mlebi calbora.» The Kel Dor’s voice was deep, made slightly robotic by the antiox mask he wore. The Droid, however, had a more pleasant tone to his vocabulator.

The Twi’lek smiled, flashing his sharpened teeth as he stroked his left lekku. “Ea ohk onhso bo sei ceinireae, Do cahsinark tlaran dan, kay ji tit cahsinark ohk bukas ver vlakesa.” «That's out of my way, I'll take you, but the fee will be twenty thousand credits.»

The expressions available beneath the antiox mask and goggles were limited, but beneath his metal apparatuses, a smile crept up on his lips. “My sources tell me it's your third stop, where you will unload several second hand droids and pick up a shipment of spice, both of which I will not notice out of respect for you or your utterly reasonable price of passage of five hundred credits, which should more than cover the expense of my being on your ship, to say nothing of the checkpoint I will help you clear at Vagus three.”

«Sei norsa bee san eti aan dei cle'tsi fi'sehan, ootay dan cahsinark xailja go behet bui sio droids vil o'ank kuklo a shipment bo kketa, anmian bo vea Do cahsinark go ayeba onhso bo rahkank toe dan aan dei onkilor raboo tlaba bo clielal bo vyan pao vlakesa, vea mtan t'u ir voylan ji o'hkaba bo sei ohsis kue dei ordeket, ar bee garea bo ji checkpoint Do cahsinark fa'kan dan v'ili ho Vagus clan.» As his droid translated, Kio Joon watched the Twi’lek smuggler’s expression change, his eyes narrowing, his jaw clenching, his lips pulling back in frustration.

“Do dey. Dan sohsa karau ar elan ar circaa la'ak si'mori. Qa ohk kue Vanagus toe dan?” «I see. You must want to go to this place pretty badly. What is on Vanagus for you?» The words lost their tone through C2-R2’s translation, but the emotions were clear nonetheless. The loss of money was irritating to him, but the greed of more easily clearing a difficult checkpoint seemed to make up for that well enough.

“What I want there is unimportant, captain. Do we have a deal?” «Qa Do karau hao ohsid mliyi go, vikesio. Nie gan fic a vonaltan?»

“Clo gu, kay cea y ohk ji jihsi canka Do nie acala bo a Juno'hervoe. Dan ohk calue toe acala!” «Very well, but this is the last time I do business with a Jedi. You are terrible for business!» There was more bluster in the display than there was beneath it, but Joon did not wish to push the point further. He had his transport, now he nearly needed to give the smuggler time to prepare his ship and crew.

“We shall see. Landing bay forty three, yes? I will be there in one hour.” «Gan mtan dey. Jirka furkom'as vyilkas clan, ka? Do cahsinark ohk circoo ootay uru foe.» The Twi’lek nodded, and the Jedi removed himself from the booth they had been sharing.

“Master, I must protest, this usage of my vocabulator is beneath me. I could serve you so much better if you would let me add in the proper embellishments. I dare say that Captain Weera was most displeased with the tone of that conversation.”

“I understand, and I promise Seetoo, I will let you do more in the future, but I needed him to be less than pleased with me now,” Joon put a hand on the droid’s shoulder in a comforting manner.

“Is this one of your many leaps of logic, Master Joon? I will remind you that last time you insisted on something like that, we were shoved out an airlock!”

“Yes, we were. Most unfortunate, that, wasn’t it?”

“It was terrible! I was not designed with such dangers in mind, Master Joon. Why, I’m still dented from when that tractor beam brought us on board the other vessel that, thank the Maker, happened to be in the area.”

“I told you to relax, Seetoo, and when we get back, I will make sure you have a nice oil bath and maintenance. Now, tell me, what does that sign there say?”

***

Vagus 3 Starport

With a bow, Kio Joon left the battered hull of the smuggling vessel. “It was a pleasure flying with you, Captain Weera. May your future be ever profitable.”
« Eti ohk a t'iwan n'uhan bo dan, Vikesio Weera. Sil dei ohsorsi ohk yei tlocesi.»

The Twi’lek shouted, raising a fist, “Kanyirk canka dan laboo a rivkan, dan ohk tit buom'et!” «Next time you need a ride-»

“It’s okay Seetoo, I could understand that one from context. Let us be on our way, shall we?”

“Of course Master, though I must say I do not know why he is so upset with us. You did try to tell him that his friend was attempting to betray him.”

“He is upset less with us, and more with the realization that he was betrayed by one he trusted so closely. In his anger, he blames me, but in time, he will come to realize his error, and it may even save his life, but that is not here nor now. What matters is that now we will obtain our proper passage to Vanagus.”

“Master, with all due respect, how do you know you will find anyone to bring us to Vanagus here?”

“Seetoo, have I ever steered us wrong?”

“No Master, the continual buzzing of my processors is merely a fault in my programming, and not at all related to the Ion Storm you flew us through back in the Denkara system.”

“Is that still bothering you? I thought the astromech on the previous ship fixed that.”

“Oh, he did, but that malfunctioning pile of bolts tried to steal my motivator unit and replace it with one meant for a power droid! I can’t make the subtle movements necessary for facilitating communication that way, Master! If you hadn’t come in at that point, I dare say I would have been gutted, and you would have been left with a badly damaged shell that could only speak in the language of binary load lifters!”

“Yes, but the buzzing is gone, is it not?”

“It was Master, but I believe this conversation has caused it to act up again. Oh my poor actuators.”

Kio Joon stifled a chuckle as he reached out with his mind, feeling the flows and eddies of the Force. The signs were clear, the one he sought was here. He could feel the presence of him through the Force. As he did so, he let the currents flow over him, bringing him further away from his present location, seeing the possibilities before him.

He found himself in a Cantina, looking at the Zabrak named Maldeth. Also was another connected to him, a Twi’lek rippling with caution, concern, and while not the desire, the capability for violence. Joon approached Maldeth and bowed slightly. “Pardon my interruption, sir, but I have been lead to understand that you might be able to assist me. I require passage from this system, and I understand you know a pilot who is in possession of a fast ship. My name is Kio Joon, and I believe you are known as Maldeth, is this not correct?”

---

Maldeth had noticed the Kel Dor the moment that he had crossed the threshold into the cantina. He had not expected however to be approached about securing services however. He blinked, his drink placed aside for a moment as the Kel Dor approached and bowed slightly. His words considered for a moment before he motioned for the empty seat opposite him. The Kel Dor was exceedingly polite.

"My name is Maldeth and I may indeed be able to assist you Kio Joon." He admitted waiting for a moment before he continued. Before he spoke, he produced a metallic circle no more than 3 inches in diameter and little more than one and half inches in height. He pressed a button that activated the device and continued. "I am representative for a group of individuals who may suit your needs. Of course, in order to identify who is best suited to aid you in your future travels I require specifics. What is the cargo? What is the destination?"

A table separated from the both a female Twi'lek shifted on her seat slightly her attention flickering from the drink on her hands to the table where Maldeth and his guest sat. The Twi'lek was cautious and well trained but to those with a discerning eye it would seem clear that she had a keen interest on what was transpiring on Maldeth's table as well as the spaces that surrounding the two.

---

The Kel Dor nodded, “Of course. My destination is a planet called Vanagus, in the Gray Zone. The cargo is myself and this droid, and of course, my privacy in this matter. I prefer my journeys to be quiet and free of...complications.” Quietly, he was thankful he had ordered C2-R2 to simply be quiet short of an emergency here, or that little tidbit would have been met with considerable derision from the droid. His face largely covered by his rebreather and goggles, his voice distorted by his voice modulation equipment, his body hidden under loose robes, getting a read without the Force would have been difficult, though not impossible for those familiar with the Kel Dor. With the Force, one might be able to sense some caution beneath his calm, but the calm and serenity was clear, if muted for the moment.

---

Maldeth considered the words of the Kel Dor and nodded as he spoke of Vanagus. He was familiar with the world even if it was not a common destination for the majority of those that sought out his services. Firstly, it laid within the gray zone as the Kel Dor had pointed out. Secondly, it did not possess a population high enough to make its markets very lucrative. “I take it that you do not carry any unusually deadly or banned substances in your person or those of your droid? I make no judgements of course but if you do, it will necessitate specific services that some of my associates do not provide. Your privacy can be guaranteed by all of my associates. Discretion is one of the hallmarks of the services that we provide.”

Maldeth took a sip of his drink and allowed his eyes to look at the Kel Dor opposite him more closely. The robes, the rebreather and googles all made reading body language rather difficult. Perhaps that was the intention or perhaps it was merely a side effect of the Kel Dor’s own genetic background. Not every man or woman that wore robes was necessarily a Jedi or Sith. He had after all, worn robes in more than one occassion himself. Maldeth was not force sensitive although he had spent time with those that were.

“Assuming that you are not carrying any items that may require preparations the final question that I need to ask is what sort of speed are you hoping for? Is your presence in Vanagus time sensitive or not? How quickly do you need to be there?”

---

Brief, quiet laughter echoed from the Kel Dor’s mask. “Nothing more dangerous than a blaster, I assure you. Just myself and my droid, and the only danger he poses is to one’s ears.” C2-R2 turned towards Kio Joon, his eyes flashing, but said nothing. The droid’s faceplate was not expressive enough to allow for any degree of emoting, but Joon knew he would hear about it afterwards. “As far as time, I would like to be on my way as quickly as possible, and in a fast ship. I am afraid my needs are quite time sensitive. The last leg of my journey took a bit...longer than anticipated. The captain told me his hyperdrive was much higher quality than it ended up being, and so we were unavoidably delayed. I hope that you have someone in your organization who is amenable and available?”

---

“I do.” Maldeth admitted.

“I have several actually. You are not asking for a great deal of specialized equipment or cargo space. If all you require is a fast ship and someone discrete then I have at least dozen names. Of those, there are three that are on world as we speak.” He continued. He reached into his pocket and retrieved a second device, this one was larger than the first and he placed it on top of the table beside the other.

“The final question I have of you is a matter of price. What sort of funding do you have available for this endeavor?” Maldeth asked. He and the men and women that he represented did not work for free after all. He pressed a button on the larger device and the faces of three individuals was projected upwards. One was a Human, one was a Twi’lek, while the third appeared to be a Rodian. Beneath their names was minimal information, including their usual charging fees. None of the pilots were particularly cheap and the human was the most expensive of the three. The expected cost shrank after Maldeth pressed a series of keys on a device on his wrist. In case of the Rodian the number dropped by almost two thirds. For the Twi’lek it dropped by a mere thirty percent. For the human, the cost dropped by a mere ten percent.

“These are your choices.” Maldeth said.

---

Kio Joon looked at the holographic faces and nodded. He had already known who would be shown to him, and who he would choose. “My credits are not unlimited, but they are enough. I believe I would like the services of the human. I would assume his fee is higher because he is more reliable?” No tricks of the mind, though he could always try them, he knew it would end poorly in this instance. He wanted the trust of the man he was hiring, and he would not achieve that by taking advantage of his associates.

---

Maldeth arched a brow when the Kel Dor chose. His eyes settling on the shielded eyes of the alien before he nodded. He reached out and shut down the device before he spoke. “Henrik is highly recommended. He is indeed quite reliable but the higher fees are generally due to his ship and his skill. I doubt that there is a better pilot in the system and his ship is well known for its speed.”

Maldeth hesitated for a moment as if taking a final measure of the Kel Dor. “You will find Henrik in bay 27. I will signal him ahead of time and indicate that you and I have come to an agreement in practice. Be advised, Henrik holds the final decision on whether he will take the contract. I simply act as his agent in these manners. Although he trusts my judgment in these matters.” He concluded.

---

Joon nodded, once more bowing to Maldeth. “Indeed, I anticipated it being related to speed, and as it is speed that I require, the extra credits will be well spent. I will meet him presently, unless there are other details that you need to take care of ahead of time.”

---

“None. You will need to present the agreed upon payment to Henrik. At times, some pilots may request payment in non-standard manners but Henrik generally asks for credits. It is the possibility that he may ask for something else that prevents me from asking for payment in advance.” He added. Henrik was very specific about the methodology of payment and demanded maximum flexibility from his associates. He waited until the Kel Dor had left the cantina before he reached for his communicator.

“Henrik, I may have secured you a client…”

---

The Kel Dor nodded, “Very well, thank you very much. It has been a pleasure doing business with you.” With that, he turned, motioned for his droid to follow him, and began making his way to the hangar of Henrik, the Human. Falling back into a light trance, he simply made his way to the hangar following the Force, not bothering with signs or maps. Within a short while, he found himself at the entrance of the bay, his finger on the notification button of the access panel. “Henrik” was inside, he could feel him, and soon, he would likely do the same. The Force led him here, but the interaction for what was next was less well defined than it had been with Maldeth.

---

Vegus Three, Bay 27

The human who called himself Henrik ceased working on his ship upon receiving the message from Maldeth. Veganus was not a world that he enjoyed visiting. It was on the grey zone and that meant that the likelihood that he would run into Jedi or Sith was higher than normal. In the grey zone, he was concerned that he would default to previous attachments and be placed in positions where he would be compelled to act. His actions would then ripple perhaps driving Lisarii further away from him or drawing the attention of the Jedi council.

You are not going to find Lisarii by playing it safe. She is in the grey zone, where else would she be?

The thought came unbidden but he found it difficult to immediately push it aside. Was there a better place for a Jedi to hide than in a place where clashes between the forces of the light and dark clashed nightly? He took a deep breath and held it. His attention flickering towards a nearby console a second before it lit up. The chime resonated through the bay indicating an arrival. He took a step and then another before reaching a specific console. He pressed a button and the outer doors that separated Vegus Three from Bay 27 began to open.

He moved away from the console and his ship and waited for his guest to enter the bay and introduce himself. As he waited, he remained alert and prepared. Vaganus was a location that could be quickly reached. The question in his mind was if going there was worth the risk.

---


The doors to the hangar opened, revealing the two and their possessions to each other. Joon gazed first upon “Henrik” and nodded, taking a moment to reflect on the present of the situation he had seen for some time now. The ship, however, was almost more familiar than the human. It was compact, but powerful, and so much of it had been tied up with “Henrik” that it was almost a part of him. “That is indeed a fine ship, Captain Henrik. I do hope that we can come to an arrangement. I am Kio Joon, and this is my protocol droid, C2-R2. I trust you are already aware of the details of where I would like to go?”

Despite the efforts to avoid making disturbances in the Force, the Force was with Kio Joon, and his training had not been in hiding that from others. Even if “Henrik” was not as skilled with the Force as Joon was, if he were the Jedi Joon suspected he was, he would soon know what shared the hangar with him, the only question would be how he would react. Peace and calmness flowed naturally from Joon, but the droid was another matter.

“Oh dear, Master. The engines on this ship look terribly large. Are you sure the compensators are capable of dealing with the acceleration? I have an actuator in my left leg that’s been sticking since the last time I was shoved into a snubfighter and flown around like a Terrelian moth in a fireworks display.”

---

Henrik watched the Kel Dor closely as he entered the bay his eyes flickering from the Kel Dor to his companion. The Kel Dor glanced towards his ship and he allowed himself a moment of pride. The Kel Dor spoke and he nodded his head in response. “Thank you Kio Joon, she has served me well. I am aware that you are requesting to go to Vaganus. What I am not certain as of yet is if I want to to take you there.” He said.

Henrik paused for a moment his attention flickered from Kio Joon to his droid. It was then that he felt it, the familiar tug the pull that he had been so used to back in the academy but that he had avoided in the time since his self-imposed exile. His immediate reaction was a flicker of surprise which washed over him in a barely perceptible wave. “It has nothing to do with price. The price that was agreed upon between you and Maldeth is fair. It is a matter of circumstance.”

Is he a Jedi or something else?

The thought swam to the surface of his mind and lingered. His facial features were significantly obstructed and his robes hid the majority of his body. He could not trust on the force in of itself to breach his defenses. His senses had always been heightened but he had always found affecting himself was easier than affecting others. If he sought the mind of Kio Joon and failed, his own abilities would be revealed.

That is assuming he does not know what you are already.

He had been seeking Lisarii since the beginning. What if she had been seeking him in turn? What if she had found him first. There were too many possibilities. His thoughts were momentarily dispelled when the droid spoke. His attention flickering towards the protocol unit.

“The speed of my ship is part of the appeal. I assure you that you will be perfectly fine within her.” He let those words of reassurance linger in the air and shifted. It was a natural movement but in doing so he positioned himself to offer a smaller profile to Kio Joon and his droid friend. His left hand fell down and his body relaxed as if ready to move in any direction. His eyes glanced casually around him and his guests his mind formulating various strategies of attack and defense should they be needed.

“Answer me this one question and I will decide if we go to Vaganus or not. Why do you have to be there?”

He waited for the response in silence. Outwardly as relaxed as the moment they had arrived. Inwardly however, the force throbbed and pulsed ready to feed muscles and mind with its familiar enhancements.

---

Under his antiox mask, Kio Joon smiled, knowing that the effort was wasted physically. “I have an appointment on Vanagus of some importance. I have been looking for some information for some time now, and there I suspect is a group that will help me find what I am looking for. Most of it is rather benign, archeological and cultural information, primarily. It is a particular interest of mine, you see. There are, of course, those who might use such information or artifacts to selfish or destructive ends, and so the longer I delay, the more likely such things are to be destroyed or taken by those who do not have the appreciation for them that I do. Depending on how the meeting on Vanagus goes, I may have additional work for you beyond that, as I believe you to be a trustworthy individual, Captain Henrik.”

The calm continued to flow from him, and he made no outwardly hostile motion. The droid, C2-R2, however moved towards the ship, inspecting it carefully. “Hmmm, well the ship appears to be in good order, though I suspect, Master Joon, that there have been many modifications to it that may not be manufacturer approved.” C2-R2 walked up to Henrik, pointing at him stiffly. “If it turns out that you’ve put an automatic ejection system into our berthing, I warn you, I will report you to the manufacturer and make sure that your warranty is voided.”

Kio shook his head and laughed, “Please pardon Seetoo, he has had quite a difficult journey. He is not used to travelling in this sector of the Galaxy, and I believe he is having a crisis as a result of it. I’m certain he will adapt soon, he is truly more capable than I believe even he is aware.” The words seem carefully chosen, and while he is clearly talking about the silver protocol droid, there is an odd weight in the way he said what he said. “In any event, I shall pay you half the agreed upon sum now, half when we arrive, is that acceptable?”

---

Henrik waited diligently for the answer to his question. He did not expect that anything that the Kel Dor would offer would satisfy him. In his mind, he was still undecided about visiting Vaganus. He needed a sign and Kio Joon would likely not be the source of it. The Kel Dor spoke of his appointment, a group that would lead him to archeological and cultural information. Such a task would have moved a Jedi with thoughts of obligation and the greater good. It would not move a courier. The promise of additional work rang hollow to his ears. His reputation was all he needed to secure ample employment. The flattery at the end removed some of the irritation in his heart but it was not enough to move him.

Not even close.

“I see.” He said.

Kio Joon made no sudden movements and he was as still as a tree with deep roots in the middle of a warm sunny day. His droid however moved away from the side of his master and moved around the perimeter of his ship. His attention shifted ever so slightly making certain to track the protocol droid. The idea that the droid was weaponized was ludicrous, the chassis was not agile enough to of much use in a fight. Nonetheless, he did not allow himself to ignore it completely. It was when he spoke that his eyes widened in surprise. Not because the protocol droid spoke, that particular model was notorious for doing little else but talk. The initial comment was met with a blink.

“What?” He said moments before the little android walked up to him and pointed at him stiffly. The words of the droid were ridiculous but it was the threat that emerged that caught him completely by surprise.

“Listen you…” He began to growl his inner peace momentarily dispelled until he caught himself.

Why am I defending myself from the accusations of an android?

He blinked and laughed a deep honest laugh that resonated through the bay. A few moments later he shook his head and pointed at the android. “I am a courier working with a very specific clientele. Do you really believe that anything in my ship has been approved by its manufacturer?” He chuckled. “Besides, If I were in the mood to eject you from my ship I assure you that you would not survive. It would not be professional of me to allow that to happen.” He shook his head. “There is little chance of that happening however. You have won your master a berth and a trip to Vaganus.”

I have not laughed like that in months. Maybe this is the sign I was seeking.

His eyes sought the Kel Dor and he nodded. “Your terms are accepted Kio Joon. I will show you and your droid to your quarters. We will leave immediately.”

---

C2-R2 took a step back, then walked back to Kio Joon. “Master, I am not sure this fellow is quite stable. That ship could fly apart the moment it hits hyperspace. I don’t wish to have my molecules spread across the galaxy, and I dare say even you might fight that unpleasant.”

The Jedi merely shook his head and patted the droid on the shoulder. “It’s okay, Seetoo, I doubt he would intentionally kill us and himself. If his ship were that dangerous, I doubt it would have lasted until now.” Walking forward with a gliding stride, he approached the ship and “Henrik” with a graceful ease. “Thank you Captain, I am very happy we could come to an arrangement.” He pulled out a credstick from his robes, handing it to the human as he walked on board the small vessel, the droid following behind, clearly upset.

“I used to have polish on my casing once, oh those were the days....”

***

Varagus Space Port
Varagus
Gray Zone


“Oh thank the Maker, solid ground once more. Master, I do hope you will not continue employing this madman. The strain of travelling in that ship has warped my casing by at least 0.23 microns. Oh, now it will never buff out, and my left arm will always scrape against my chest plating.” The droid continued his rant as he exited the ship, moving quickly to the landing bay door.

Kio Joon, meanwhile, took his time disembarking. The currents of the Force were already swirling here, the meeting he had foreseen was beginning. He only hoped he was in time to avoid some of the darker paths he had seen. Looking at “Henrik”, he bowed slightly. “Captain, I must thank you for your excellent flying. We have arrived just in time, but I am afraid we must hurry. I do hate to inconvenience you, but the final part of the payment is with an associate of mine, and it involves going through a rough section of town. Could you perhaps accompany me? You are more likely to give the local thugs pause than I, I suspect.”


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PostPosted: Sat Aug 23, 2014 8:14 pm 
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A burst of dissonant howling interrupted the conversation. "I regret, exalted customer, that I must insist on a price of of two hundred fifty for each unit."

"Republic or Sith?"

"Either will do, honored one," the Rodian replied obsequiously. "We deal with both sides, without prejudice."

"Of course you do," replied Mylus. "One fifty each."

"Such a number is impossible, respected client. I could not let them go for less than two-forty each."

"One seventy-five."

"Two thirty-five. These are virgin parts."

"They're easily fabbed out of basic materials and go for a hundred credits at most in civilized space. You can literally make them out of junk."

"Junk composed of the proper materials, oh exalted customer, but not with the same guarantees and quality of these units. I believe you are suffering from the poor performance and condition of the current units? And it is costly to import goods from more prosperous space. Two-thirty."

"Two hundred. That covers your costs and plenty of profit."

"Agreed, sagacious one."

Mylus handed over the currency as CY-ZR took possession of the breakers with his multiple arms. The rogue Sith cocked his head. The Force was stirring. Or being stirred. He reached out with his senses.

It was subtle and low key, but it connected two beings who were not. Both were strong in the Force and connected by the flow. And very close.

"Siyzar," he ordered his droid. "Get these back into the ship and prep for take off. Immediately."

"And what about you master?"

"We'll see." If one of the two he sensed was Sith, it was in for a very bad day. He began walking. The Force would be his guide.

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It's not that I'm unforgiving, it's that most of the people who wrong me are unrepentant assholes.


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PostPosted: Sun Aug 24, 2014 2:43 am 
Mr. Party-Killbot
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On the patio of a small eatery, in the middle of a large crowd milling about, there sat a Rodian.

The Rodian sat alone, a table in the corner with a chair pushed up against the wall, a filmbook and electrostylus in his hands, though he did not write. He seemed to be watching the crowd, a dark cloak pulled up over his head, exposing only the tip of his vibration-sensitive antennae. The light was too poor to discern much more, but a keen-eyed spectator might notice that the Rodian's face, hands, and antennae were not the blue-green spectrum of color that typified the Rodian race, but a pale white, and his large, multifaceted eyes were tinged a soft red whenever he chanced to look up, which wasn't often.

The Rodian's lack of apparent interest in his surroundings was, of course, a facade, one common enough here on this backwater world of cutthroats and castaways, even ones who were not force sensitive, but unlike most, the Rodian was not engaging in it to avoid being assaulted. Oh it was a concern here, as it was in many places, even for races with martial reputations as long as Rodians, but this Rodian was less concerned than others in his place might have been. It wasn't the lightsabre inside his sleeve that was responsible for that, nor the force coursing through his mind and soul. It was the mantra that was running through his head. "Conflict is a gift," it said. "Do not look gift banthas in their teeth."

And besides, he had far more important things to worry about now.

Out there, on the edges of his perception, he could feel it. Like a thick spot in the brain, like a candle flickering in a dark night, it was a presence, or perhaps it was the lack of one, a small hole in the sea of energy that flowed about him. He could sense it now, just on the edge of perception, like a floater in the eye that darted away when one tried to look at it, a shapeless form that was there despite being invisible, notable only for its absence. He chanced a further effort, a careful attempt to discern if he was looking at shadows again, pressing on with his mind, always mindful of the need to remain undetected as he sought to ensure that whatever it was was actually -

A soft tug on his sleeve.

The lightsabre was in his hand before he realized what was happening, though he did not ignite it, and merely turned his head to see who it was, all of his fear and apprehension and surprise drained away to prepare for the imminent, soul-shattering violence that he might have to unleash at a moment's notice. But it was no assassin or bounty hunter that greeted him as he turned to see what it was, but a child, human, ragged and covered in dirt, one he knew. One he'd told to meet him here when there was something to report. His anger, at the interruption if nothing else, still boiled, but he shoved it all summarily aside. He was Sith. Anger served him.

"Have you found something?" asked the albino Rodian.

The child did not answer, not immediately, and this pleased Ryassek, for it meant that his instructions concerning discretion had been heard and listened to. And so rather than repeating himself, the Rodian stood, and without a word, made his way off the patio and into the street, moving down a hundred paces before turning into an alleyway. A quick check with the Force was enough to ensure that the alley was empty, and he walked down it until he was no longer visible from the street, trusting that the child would follow him, and then he turned to find that it was so.

"Did you find him?" he asked.

The child nodded, his eyes still nailed to the lightsabre in Ryassek's hand. That much was probably to be expected, as this child, unlike most on this woebegone planet, had seen it lit, and used. Ryassek had met him during a razzia by a trio of Gammorian slavers, all three of whom he had summarily slaughtered with the prejudice of a former slave. Since then, the child and his fellows had served as eyes and ears or errand runners when needed, a cursory service, one that he could justify as he was physically incapable of being everywhere at once, and his quarry was such that indirect methods might be warranted.

"Where is he?" he asked, and sliding the sabre back into his sleeve, he knelt down, the better to actually get what he needed. The child's eyes finally moved and he breathlessly answered.

"He's at the bar."

A surge of emotion moved through Ryassek. His calculation had been correct. The man he had been described was the presence he had sensed. The coincidence was too remote to be possible, even had he believed in such things. He did not suppress the surge of elation, but he did temper it, for too great a force presence might well spoil everything now. He had to be extremely careful.

"Did you see him?"

The boy nodded again, and proceeded to give a description that could not possibly be faulty. The blind gaze, the grey coat, the movements that belied vision through means other than sight, a Miralukan by the sound of things, a species seemingly force-sensitive by birth. It could not possibly be a Sith, for no Sith, Ryassek included, had that fine a control over its emotional state. It could only be what he'd been looking for for all this time. It was a Jedi.

Ryassek had noticed him weeks before, not a presence but an absence, a calm in the turbulent sea of emotions riven through this city, and no sooner had he detected it than he had begun preparing. Jedi were fantastically good at spotting disturbances in the force, almost as good as Sith were at creating them, and to be detected by this Jedi, or whatever else might be here, was not part of his plan. As such, he'd had to be extremely careful, masking his emotions as best he could, hiding within the crowd of fearful, angry, or bitter inhabitants of this backwater pile of rock. He'd remained on the fringes of what he hoped was the Jedi's ability to detect, not daring to appear before it, for who could tell by what means a Miraluka "saw". Only once had he ventured within a hundred yards of the Jedi's abode, and then only by necessity, a band of cutthroats pursuing him through the streets in retaliation for what he'd done to their "boys". He'd moved quickly, unobtrusively, and with every fiber of his being desperately trying to keep his emotions quiet, fighting against them to avoid detection. He had no idea if it had worked or not. But then that was days ago. And the Jedi was still there.

What a Jedi would be doing in this abandoned part of space, Ryassek could not possibly fathom. Anything so discrete as trying to probe the Jedi's thoughts was out of the question, as there were some things that Jedi were simply better at, and there was no use pretending otherwise. Even if he manage to wrest the knowledge from the Jedi's mind, he could not very well do so without the Jedi realizing he was there. And given the state of the Jedi order in these chaotic times, that could mean anything from a fight, which was useful but not precisely what he wanted now, to a whole squad of Jedi showing up, which would likely end with his own death, to the Jedi simply leaving the planet as quietly as he had come, which would leave him with exactly nothing.

But this child had seen the Jedi, this child who bore no touch of the Force whatsoever, and who was indistinguishable from a hundred other urchins plying their trades as it were on the streets of this so-called City. If the Jedi noticed him at all, which Ryassek doubted, he would appear like nothing but another beggar or thief. This, perhaps, was why so many Sith succumbed to the lure of servants and slaves, but then Ryassek was not using this child to make his own burdens lighter. He was using this child to make possible the taking on of new ones.

"Is he a Jedi?"

The question broke Ryassek out of his musings, and he turned back to regard the child once again. "A Jedi?" he asked, as if amused. "Why yes."

"But you're not a Jedi."

"Of course not," he said. How anyone ever mistook him for a Jedi was beyond him, but then the mythos that surrounded the order was quite a thing.

"Are you gonna fight?"

A prescient question, though likely not for the reasons the child thought. "I don't know yet," he said. "That much may be up to him."

"But don't you hate him?"

A soft smile, or the Rodian equivalent, crossed Ryassek's proboscis.

"If necessary..."

_________________
Gaze upon my works, ye mighty, and despair...

Havoc: "So basically if you side against him, he summons Cthulu."
Hotfoot: "Yes, which is reasonable."


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PostPosted: Sun Aug 24, 2014 2:26 pm 
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Some Jedi meditate. Some train obsessively. Others simply get on with their work, confident enough in their own self-control.

A sparsely-populated side-street, two humans on one side of the street, facing one way in mid-stride, a Gand on the opposite side, facing the other way. Streaks of color, greens, yellows, oranges, assorted shades stretch forwards and back from each figure. In all three cases, the streaks behind the figures extend away, fading out as they approach the edges of the canvas. Ahead, however, the streak of one of the humans lunges across the street towards the Gand's streak. The Gand's streak ducks low and dives aside, while the second human simply flattens against a wall to get out of the way. The streaks of pigment snarl together into an incoherent mass of mess.

Corac sighs and shakes his head back and forth as he cleans a brush, the eyeless painter looking over the canvas with a frown. Here in the privacy of his apartment, he doesn't bother with the sunglasses that easily justify his covered eyes in the blistering light of Vaganus. Instead, a simple length of black cloth wrapped around his head covers the eyeless sockets as he looks around the small apartment. After such an extended posting here, the walls are covered in similar paintings, many of them descending into snarls of mottled, mixed color as streaks intersect. The colors are vibrant, wild, and varied, inconsistent from painting to painting and even sometimes from moment to moment in the same painting.

Now what.

Interminably-long days, an open-ended posting, very little better to do -- all of these factors combine to produce a listless schedule. Another painting? No, enough for now. A spin through the streets? Just finished one. Drinks downstairs? ...No. Might as well get some sleep.

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-'You know me. You know that if there was a way to become Monitor Shiva, I would.'


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PostPosted: Sun Aug 24, 2014 5:46 pm 
Mr. Party-Killbot
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For an hour, he had waited in the shadows, ever sense his delicate, tentative efforts had detected the Miralukan Jedi entering a state that he hoped was sleep. It was possible that it was something else of course, a meditative trance, or even a trick, but there was no doing something like this without risk. He waited in the bar, staring into his drink, looking as unobtrusive as he could, repeating over and over again the mantra of control, forcing his emotions into place, making ready to hide as carefully as he could. Jedi were an unknown quantity, their power level unexplored. He had never before even met one. Would he be able to detect Ryassek's presence? Had he already done so? Was this all a trap, a plot to lure him in and destroy him? These questions circled through his head and brought fear in their wake, and he did not block out the fear but contained it, readied it, prepared it for a time when he might need its surge of desperation, its energy, should everything go to Hell and his plans lay in ruin. He was Sith. Fear was his ally. It bred hate, and from hate, anger, and from anger, the suffering of his enemies. Should it come to that, he would be armed, and ready to fight, and see what it was to stand against a Jedi.

The clock on the wall chimed three times, another local hour having passed. He steadied himself, put down his drink, and walked away.

He was not walking to the door, but back, to the stairs that accessed the upper floors of the rooms, and there was a guard in the way, a bouncer, Devaronian, armed with a shock-cudgel and a blaster. But Ryassek did not so much as alter his gait, walking right up to and past the Devaronian as though he had every right to do so, reaching out with the Force as he approached to coax the bouncer into focusing his attention on something else. The other bar patrons, seeing the bouncer letting the Rodian through, did not give the matter another thought, and then he was past, and ascending the stairs, and the bouncer would not even remember he had been there at all.

That was the easy part.

The Jedi's room was the last one down the hallway, and he approached with care, treading on the carpet to muffle the sound, for who could tell what the hearing of a Miralukan might be? The door was heavy, but its lock a simple latch on the inside, and he approached carefully, and placed his hand on the door to steady himself. Opening the door was simple, but doing so without alerting the Jedi inside...

A soft click, discernible only to his vibration-detecting antennae and suckered fingers, and the door slowly opened, revealing a small room studded with... paintings?

... wait...

Paintings covered every wall, hung high and low with no discernible pattern to them. Each one seemed abstract, lines of color moving forward and back, occasionally snarling into vast, angry tangles, purposes unknown. Ryassek's mind, locked down as it was, could not help but wander at the sight. Why would a blind Jedi hang such things? Had he created them? And for what purpose?

He turned away to regard the Jedi itself, asleep, or seemingly so, on a cot at the side of the room. He moved then, and quickly, before his emotions could run free and signal the Jedi to awaken, before his sense of triumph at finally standing before a Jedi could break through his efforts at control. A single slip could be fatal here. The Jedi capacity to detect Sith at a remove was legendary. He had no desire to test that legend until he was ready. And he would not be ready until...

... there.

On the chair, opposite the bed, a worn travel satchel, one that seemed to call to him somehow, an instinctual reaction that he had long-ago learned to trust. He advanced to the chair quickly and directly, opened the satchel as quietly as he could, and found it. A lightsabre, straight-of-hilt and simple of make, lay in the bottom of the bag. This, this here was what he needed, for a disarmed Jedi was a Jedi more likely to talk, or at least it would have been so with a Sith. And it had been some time since he had held two sabres at the same time.

He reached into the bag, taking the Jedi's sabre with his free hand, and felt the balance. A touch heavier than his accustomed weight, but not so much as to get in the way. And despite everything, all his efforts at keeping a handle on his emotions, he couldn't suppress the surge of triumph and glee that pulsed through him as he gripped the purloined sabre. To hold paired lightsabres again, it was like a piece of him had been restored.

It was freeing.

_________________
Gaze upon my works, ye mighty, and despair...

Havoc: "So basically if you side against him, he summons Cthulu."
Hotfoot: "Yes, which is reasonable."


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PostPosted: Mon Aug 25, 2014 9:48 pm 
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For an unofficial Jedi station chief, you're about as subtle as a herd of hungry rancor. Come on back, share a cup of caf with me, and let's discuss things like civilized beings.


Excellent. He did not take the bait.

That depends on one's conceptualization of the term 'Subtle', does it not? I will explain, however, I need a pretext to hang around and chat. Play along, if you would.

Hati spoke and informed Aserak that no, the part was not available

"Ah, a shame" Aserak said in his speaking voice. Then he looked over and publicly noticed Corvin. A huge, toothy, and perfectly genuine smile that went all the way up to his eyes...happened. As if a vicious predator was actually happy to see someone. Which was true. Even if the words themselves were lies.

"WOW! How're ya doing you rancid wamp rat!? When did you escape that Toydarian tramp freighter? The running conditions on that flying abomination were so bad, I didn't think you would ever get out of its maintenance ducts alive, let alone end up here of all places fixin' speeders. Here, I'll give you a hand, we can catch up"

With that he got down beside Corvin, so as to continue two conversations at once.

"Hey!" Corvin replied with a friendly smile, though with an amused glint in his eyes. "Hey thanks, I've been just helping out Hati here with these speeders. Hand me that spanner, would ya?"

I do apologize for my earlier abrasiveness. Aserak said in their now-mutual headspace

I had to assess you quickly to see if you were...suitable for what I have in mind, and that means blindsiding, annoying, and pushing around. You took it well. I was not kidding about that Sith, Tailing and Surveilling him and potentially luring him to a safe location to engage either peacefully or non-peacefully will require certain qualities. Patience chief among them. Something you are apparently good at. Even if your thoughts leak more than I would like, it is also fair to say that any unintended thought and emotion leakage is more than I generally like. Here, it could prove useful

Well, that depends on whether or not my thoughts leaking was an accident or not, Corvin replied with an amused note to his mental voice.

I may not be a... Ah, I see our new friend is coming to greet us, Corvin said, sounding thoughtful.

Aserak sensed a shift in The Force as well and this interrupted both of their conversations

He stopped cold mid thought, his eyes going blank as he focused entirely on another sense, not of the usual 5 or 6 that others had. The Force amplified his pre-existing telepathy many fold, permitting feats of the mind that were impossible for most Jedi, and non-Jedi Hortek alike. His mind expanded into Another Place where he could perceive both the flow of the force and the minds of others. Minds "dimmed" and "Brightened" with the intensity and nature of their emotional state. Aserak filtered through them until he found the one he was looking for. An entity seething with the Dark Side of The Force. The entity was outrageously happy, and coming closer.

He needed more, but could not risk direct contact with an unknown entity at this range. Not with a force sensitive. There was one way. He dropped more of his blocks. He was starting to be bombarded with the errant thoughts of those around him now. Not just the emotions, but the contents. The sources of their pains and joys, their preoccupations, their fears, hopes, and dreams. But he was also extending his precognitive abilities beyond the handful of seconds he usually had without difficulty. Narrowing down on the most likely paths the future would take, based on their resonance with currents of The Force, bound by logic and what he could see of the present as it unfolded. The cacomemey became more and more intense as he reached farther and farther into the future. Ten seconds. Fifteen. Twenty. Each extension exponentially increasing the amount of sensory input and the number of possibilities, but the possibilities were also converging the longer he held on, as what was actually happening began to restrict the number of paths the future could take. He held on for five seconds, while gradually easing back on his precognition. Even doing that, the pain was starting to mount and he risked passing out. He shut the proverbial door, making still the tempest in his mind, but holding the projected path in his memory.


I think he is coming here. Toward us. I am not sure, but if I am right we only have a few minutes, he is very close. Very happy, which is disturbing. Moving toward us. I dont know what his precise intentions are, but I think we can lure him into a less densely populated part of the city before we risk finding out.

Aserak telekinetically moving his lightsaber hilt--unactivated--from the inside of his vest to his right hand.

Corvin looked at Hati, looking concerned. "Hati, we have someone potentially quite dangerous heading here. I do not wish to endanger you, so you may wish to hide yourself for a while. My friend here," he said, looking at Aserak, "and I will lead him away from here, but I want to make sure you're safe."

Hati looked at the cylinder in Aserak's hand, and then looked at the both of them calculatingly. "Ah'm guessin' your blades ain't red. Alright, I'll batten down the hatches here, you two go do what you need to."

With that, the two Jedi left the junk shop and headed toward a run-down rental space with a high proportion of vacant units.

_________________
"Nothing in biology makes sense except in the light of evolution."
- Theodosius Dobzhansky

There is no word harsh enough for this. No verbal edge sharp and cold enough to set forth the flaying needed. English is to young and the elder languages of the earth beyond me. ~Frigid

The Holocaust was an Amazing Logistical Achievement~Havoc


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PostPosted: Mon Aug 25, 2014 10:09 pm 
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Two, in motion, strong in the Force. He followed, his long strides eating up the distance. They were heading into an even more rundown area than was what passed for normal in this Sith hole of a city. Allies? Familiar terrain? Ambush considerations? A desire to minimize witnesses? Any or all of those were possible.

It didn't matter. They were close now and he would have them. If they were Jedi then he would leave them in peace, if they allowed it. If they were Sith then they would reap the rewards of their Empire.

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It's not that I'm unforgiving, it's that most of the people who wrong me are unrepentant assholes.


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