Dlarit Base A
Footsteps resounded down the hallway somewhere to the north as the party wove their way past broken debris, crackling machinery and the odd blood stain or fallen body that had yet to be removed. The air in front of them frosted their breath and each footstep allowed the chill of the air to catch in their throats and make the process even more arduous than walking was meant to be. They rounded another corner and came across a rather gruesome scene, warhost troops lay scattered around the enormous corpse of what appeared to be a Wampa though as they neared they could make out the alchemical alterations that had been done to the beast. Relief workings were heading towards the party, making their own way through the winding corridors towards the fallen, removing any identification from the corpses before removing the nearly frozen bodies. Taking them away from the corridors to awaiting transports to be shuttled home for a proper burial by their families and loved ones.
“Was this all worth it?” Sanguinius thought out loud as he watched another body placed onto a repulsor sledge. “All this…carnage, and for what?”
The rest of the party said nothing. All had their own thoughts about what lay around them. Bentre walked somewhere off to the side, lost in his own head. The Proconsul had been quiet since his return from the frozen tomb. Aul and Jurdan walked somewhere behind, whispering to one another, they had stopped a few times as they recognised their own House’s insignia on some of the fallen soldiers.
The party advanced until they came upon two large blast doors, one of which had fallen to the floor, wherever this was due to the conflict or some past action by the previous tenants wasn’t evident. The other was marked by blaster scores and scattered weaponry lay about it. This had been the place of the last stand and the fighting had been the toughest here. They passed through the doorway and into the vast chamber beyond.
The chamber was, or at least had once been, the main manufacturing area for the base. Figures bustled around, inspecting machinery, repairing pieces of broken equipment and taking notes of what worked and what was needing to be replaced. Warhost and Nihilgenia kept guard and somewhere off to the side the unfamiliar armour of a group of Mandalorians, surrounded by what appeared to be large wolf-like beasts stood. This is where the party headed, towards the loud and raucous war party. Each of the warriors had their helms free and each reminded Sang of savages from old stories. Braided hair and beards, shaved scalps, cybernetics upon most of them, some wore pelts around their shoulders, others strange talismans and all sported the same armour and the same emblems; The one eyed wolf.
The Ulfhednar, if Sang recalled and as they approached the group he made out the form of Selvaria and he didn’t have to look far for the Quaestor of Marka Ragnos. Kojiro turned away from the group and stalked towards the approaching part. Selvaria was close at his elbow as she always was and near by her wolf padded up behind them. The rest of the warriors moved away from the group and headed off to the edge of a pit where some disconcerting noises emanated from within. A few of them through semi disgusted looks towards the Sith and Jedi approaching before turning back to whatever was so interesting in the pit.
“Ahh Sanguinius, I was wondering when you would grace us with your presence. This is what the fruits of our labour achieved. Another continent back under our control, and all this,” he gestured around him. “This is ours.The future of warfare.”
“It’s…impressive, but I’ve been wondering if the cost was worth it? We lost good men to take this place and for what? A load of broken machines and outdated software?” He gazed around the room and winced as a piece of machinery was dragged to the ground from its perch on a shelf. “The body count is still being taken, but I understand….”
“Don’t concern yourself with the cost, my dear Consul. We soldiers know what the potential cost of our occupation is. Your Force users survived and I’m sure you’ll be happy to hear that,” the sarcasm dripped from the Quaestor’s voice but before any of the party could respond he had already moved over to a technician who handed him a datapad. “This is worth it. Worth the cost. Schematics to upgrade our armour, weapons and even plans to alter our war machines and ships to work better, to keep our men alive and in the fight. Yes, this was worth it. All of it was worth it. These fools were sitting on a treasure trove of information and did nothing with it.”
Kojiro threw the datapad to Bentre who caught it and started scrolling through the information provided when he was satisfied it was passed around the party who all took their turn reading the data.
“This seems…fascinating. The Clan would be strengthened I’m sure,” Sanguinius cut into the murmur that had started, studiously ignoring Kojiro’s barbs, that would be a matter for another day. “But how long will it take to put together, to fit everything out and restore it all to working order?”
Kojiro shrugged and Selvaria sidled up to his side and whispered something in his ear. When she was done she moved away over to the pit and pushed to the front as an excited murmur rose. The technician that handed Kojiro the datapad grimaced before returning to her work.
“I don’t have the details on time. If you like, I can send one of the scientists to your office later with all that. But for now, I think that’s the official part over. There’s some entertainment over in the pit I want to enjoy,” a loud roar escaped from the pit and Kojiro had already turned and was moving over quickly to the edges. Curious, some of the party followed and even Sang’s interest was peaked. As he moved up to the Quaestor’s side he wished it hadn’t. There in the pit stood one of the Wampa creatures, and across from it were what appeared to be men and women, dressed and bedraggled in scraps. The beast was leashed but even now the Consul could see these bindings were being loosened.
“What is this? You aren’t going to…” before he could even finish the monster was loosed and the following spectacle had him turn as his stomach twisted. The Ulfhednar whooped and jeered at the bloodletting below, even some of the Warhost were watching with glee. “Kojiro, what is this? Are those prisoners?”
“Yes, dear Sanguinius. I decided to give the men some entertainment and try out the monsters we found. They are quite effective don’t you think? Don’t worry though, some of the prisoners have survived. Those that do we let go, give them rations and release them into the wastes. Now if there’s nothing left, my new Aedile will escort you wherever you want to go,” he gestured and a figure moved towards the party. “Armad, or as I’ve just appointed him to head up the Dlarit operation here, Director Armad will take you where you need to go. Good day Consul.” With that, he turned his back to the sport below and left the group alone with the new Aedile.
Terra Do Gelo Mining Complex
Tasha’s footsteps struck against the hard ground and she looked up from the ledge she had just dropped from. The Twi’lek had been granted the rights to map out the complex along with a select few. The team moved cautiously through the chambers of the mine, broken machines and rogue droids littered the ground and it was her job to ensure the area was safe for the main teams to move in and fully secure the location.
As they advanced something skittered in front of them and the click of raised weaponry resounded. The light lit up the area and the skittering noise retreated into the shadows, as the light hit it Tasha could just make out the shape of some form of rodent vanishing. It’s tail whipping behind it.
The group relaxed and moved on. Carnage lay everywhere, choke points were littered with more remains of warhost troops and the carcasses of droids. This was a tomb and the thought of it made the Battlemaster shiver. She missed the sky and this was the furthest from where she wanted to be but Kojiro had asked her so nicely. Right after appointing her to Battle Team leader of the Night Hawks, how could she refuse after that?
The Twi’lek sighed and gestured and with her team vanished into the shadows of the complex to finish her mission. As she did she wondered what the future held and where this will all take them. After all was Tarthos truly free? Or was there more to come before their home could truly be reclaimed. Hopefully before someone decided to blow it up again.
Temple of Blood
Sanguinius paced the room, as Bentre looked on, “His insults have no place in Naga Sadow, Bentre.”
“I know, I know,” Bentre replied soothingly, placating his superior.
“They were unarmed prisoners and I’ll be damned if his mercenary hoodlums get to murder and kill those who bloody well surrendered to them.”
Bentre cast his glance at the datapad in his grip, “His actions aside, this data may be of some use.”
“Data be damned, Bentre. Do you think the Dark Council will allow us to blatantly improve our military might? Why else do you think they struck at us in the past?” Sanguinius stopped pacing and lent against his desk. “No, the real issue is close at hand. Kojiro’s arrogance will lead to him making a mistake…”
“…and mistakes are deadly.” Bentre finished the sentence, well aware of his Consul’s favourite sayings. The Correllian smiled as he thought of the adventures ahead.