With a lightning-quick motion Darcy punched under his other hand, sending an energy shot into the hands of a Collective soldier, who dropped their weapon. With the same smooth punching motion, he fired another shot into a second soldier’s face, staggering them while the surrounding Clan Vizsla troops fired on his targets.
“Nice shot,” Kalan nodded as he and Occultan took aim at the last soldier in this group of enemies. A second group had been headed off by Farrin and Aeternus, and in the middle of being cut down by two impressive Dark Jedi, an expert vibroswordsman had joined in. The Collective never stood a chance. “Glad you could make it, Rulvak,” the Proconsul of Clan Vizsla greeted the Quaestor as they all grouped together.
The ground began to shake violently. In fact, the entire ship shook, as if it had been struck by something particularly massive. Power went out, some of the lights went down, and the gathered Vizslans braced themselves or fell to the ground. Darcy picked himself up and looked around, noting that everyone else was as worried by that as him.
“What the dosh did they just hit us with?” Darcy squeaked.
“Whatever it was,” Occultan replied, “we’ll need to pick up the pace. Are we ready to get off this rustbucket?”
Rulvak’s communicator suddenly snapped to life, and an image of Grand Master Cantor appeared on the screen with an urgent message.
“That should be a yes,” Rulvak confirmed as he crossed over to Kalan. “The Grand Master has given order Laqueum. The shields are down and we need to move.” Kalan nodded his acknowledgement as the Lucrehulk’s systems came back online. “Guard this hangar with your lives!” the Proconsul ordered an assault company, who saluted and took defensive positions.
“We’re all pushing forward!” Kalan declared as he led the way, followed closely by the rest of Vizsla’s advance team. Darcy tried to hug the middle as best he could. He had been many things - a smuggler, a broker, a translator - but never a soldier. A voice crackled over a nearby commlink, alerting Vizsla’s ground team that their path off the Matron was clear. Taking it as a good sign, the teenager felt a bit more optimistic about pushing forward to wherever their objective was.
A blaster bolt singed past and struck one of their accompanying soldiers, signifying more trouble up ahead. “Sniper!” someone shouted, and the party took cover quickly.
“A sniper? Around here?” Darcy double-checked a couple of nearby landmarks.
“Yeah, looked like a Rodian.”
“That’s Bardot,” the teenager dismissed. “Don’t worry, they’re my friends,” the boy reassured the others as he stepped out into the open, his arms extended in a large shrug. A second sniper shot, this time to the ground, brought Darcy to a halt.
“He’s your friend?” Rulvak asked sarcastically.
“We’ve met a few times. ACHUTA BARDOT!” Darcy shouted at the top of his lungs. “Eh watto, cooda bunga?”
From the opposite direction, a handful of pirates quickly marched out of nearby shop fronts, their weapons raised, catching the suppressed Vizslans off guard. Darcy turned and recognized a few of them. “I might need some credits,” Darcy whispered loudly as a large and distinctively snow-white Wookiee stepped forward with a roar. Without missing a beat, the boy roared something different back at him. “I need a chip with ten thousand credits right now or we’re all gonna die!” he whispered as the snow-colored Wookiee thrust a communicator in his face. The teenager turned to where the sniper fire had been coming from. “Bardot! Como mi Darcy! Mi Darcy!”
The response was not happy.
“Coton, kava moulee-rah du creeda, eh bano!” The boy clicked his fingers urgently and Rulvak reluctantly handed a chip over. “Seb qa!” Darcy held a few chips up high, before they were snatched and checked by the Wookiee. “Caso beeta doo te wan,” the boy continued into the communicator, accompanied by the Wookiee’s approving growl. “Kava thirty thousand creeda du chu. Keelap mala nah sootah majordomo feeching. Eh vota ma good pateesa tuta Clan Vizsla…” Darcy waved his hands and nodded his head to emphasise whatever points he was making, before placing his hand very fondly on Kalan’s helmet. The Proconsul considered shooting him immediately.
“You shouldn’t trust this slave,” the Rodian’s voice echoed over the communicator.
“Jes bil nok shag, Bardot!” Darcy replied, his voice freezing over.
“Ko desra sik Nalya du Hutt, wermo. BATA BOOTANA!” The boy simmered quietly as the snow-colored Wookiee took the communicator back, the pirates returning inside for the next ambush. The short, furry brute made a final, almost apologetic growl, to which Darcy purred.
“What was that about?” Occultan asked as he stepped forward.
“We can get through,” the teenager replied, his tone clearly offended. “But we might want to go round on the way back.”