Hailstorm [HKM] [Closed]

(Callus Bo'amar) #1

OOC: This is a run-on for House Karness Muur members that have indicated their participation. Below follows the introduction to the story. After all members have expressed interest posting will begin. No posting order will be established but a member may not make consecutive posts. All other rules and etiquette of a run-on writing will be followed.

IC:
Callus and Taranae bent low over a table in a small office their heads hovering above a small, irregularly shaped object that was glowing with a faint purple glow and giving off a dull humming sound. Callus rose and ran his fingers through his beard as he removed his datapad from the table. He tapped several commands and read a small block of text. “One of our survey teams found this behind a bulkhead.” He said quoting the report from his datapad.

“Apparently it was encased in rock that was sealed behind the wall and when it fell out it cracked and began to glow and hum.”

Callus put his datapad down and lifted the object in his hand. It wasn’t heavy, much less dense than he would have imagined, it was also cold to the touch and seemed to repel the heat from his hand. He looked across the table at Taranae with a quizzical look. Taranae gazed back at Callus.

“I have no idea what it is. We need to find its origin and learn more about it at the least.” she replied. “Have you any theories as to where we might begin?”

Callus sat the object back on the table and closed his eyes. The Quaestor extended his hand toward the object and felt it in the force. It was like a dense spot in his perception. It wasn’t a void like the technology of the Yuuzhan Vong, this was a concentration of energies, a nexus of power. Almost like a beacon, but it was clouded, weak. His eyes snapped open.

“Take a step back.” He instructed Taranae as he also stepped away from the table and extended his fingers towards the mysterious object. “Hold on to your butts.”

He sighed, the last word drowned out by a crackle of electricity and the ionization of the air as an arc of blue lightning erupted from Callus’ fingers and lanced through the air towards the object.

As the bolt hit, the light from the object grew in intensity. Both Callus and Taranae’s shadows danced on the walls behind them as the joining caused a loud fizz to start as a barely audible sound. The sound gained intensity as the lightning was continuously fed into the unknown item until it was a shrill squeal. Taranae covered her ears and she noticed Callus wince in pain as the sound began to reach levels high enough to cause damage to their ears.

There was suddenly a loud cracking noise which reverberated around the room, and both the Quaestor and Aedile dropped to the ground with their hands covering their ears as Callus stopped his assault. Everything went quiet as they dropped below the level of the table, but shadows were still being cast around the room. Taranae lifted her hands from her ears and glanced around. She could still see residual shadows of Callus and herself; Callus with his hands outstretched towards the object and she with her hands over her ears. What stupefied her was the distinct lack of sound. Cautiously she rose so her eyes just crested the edge of the table and peered along its surface to where the object sat.

It had been blown in two, but from the halves that were left, a light shone from each. The twin beams met above the item, causing a three-dimensional effect of a rotating planet. Taranae stood, uneasily at first, and looked at Callus below the table edge. He was still reeling from the shock of feeding all the energy into the object and then almost having his eardrums burst. After a moment, he stood up shaking his head. He gazed at the rotating display and gave a side glance to Taranae, shrugging as he did.

“I think our first course of action would be to determine which planet we are being shown.” he said. “And then we’ll discuss the tricky part, shall we?”

Taranae just nodded, dumbfounded. She had an idea which planet this could be after researching information to further her studies in the Shadow Academy and she had the feeling that Callus did, too. It looked as if the planet was covered in ice and could only be Hoth…

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(Callus Bo'amar) #2

It was either late at night or early morning station time depending on your point of view.
Callus knew his summons would startle many from their dreams but he knew those that would respond would be ready and eager to participate. He just had to wait.

The Quaestor leaned against a stack of crates in the dim docking ring as the crew prepared the Lambda-class T4-a for liftoff and transport of his team to the ice planet of Hoth.

It had been decades since Callus had been to his homeworld. He wondered if his father and mother were still there, if they were still alive. He’d not seen them since he graduated from the academy and joined the TIE Corps. He’d attempted to contact them after his brother died but they were good at keeping themselves off the grid. A useful skill for smugglers but not so good for keeping up with family. They probably wouldn’t recognize him now. He pushed the thoughts away as he felt Taranae sidle up behind him.

“Hope I didn’t wake you.” He said with a hint of a chuckle. “Did you bring it?” He asked and was answered by a solid thunk as she placed a secure case on the crates behind him. “Never doubted you for a second. I don’t think we’ll need it but better safe than sorry. What’s the team look like?”

Taranae handed him a small datacard that he slipped into the wrist mounted datapad on his left arm. Names and faces scrolled on the holographic display in his palm as Taranae spoke. “Looks like an interesting group to be sure. I’m still not sure why we’re not going alone.”

Callus shrugged, “Things are brewing Tara, things that are going to require a lot more than you and I can handle we need to know who else we can count on.” He continued to scroll through names and faces. So many new faces, but that was the nature of the beast so to speak. Lots of turnover. In total a seven member team. He closed the projection and rubbed his eyes. “We are two days in transit hopefully that will be enough time to make some sort of plan as to what exactly the hell we are supposed to be doing. I hope you packed warm.” A soft thump was his answer as Taranae dropped her duffel bag to the deck. “I think I’ll manage.” Taranae began before the pilot descended the ramp and interrupted her."

“Apologies my Lady,” she said bowing in deference to Taranae, “My lord the shuttle is ready for take off at your command.” She informed Callus with another bow.

“Thank you Captain Sileen,” Callus said with a nod, “we will be leaving shortly, go ahead and get clearance for takeoff. Use my code and tell them to keep it off the official register.”

“Of… of course my lord.” Sileen stammered as she bowed again and disappeared up the boarding ramp. Taranae looked at Callus with a raised eyebrow.

“Can’t ever be too careful with something like this.” Callus spoke in response to her silent question. “Get it loaded, I’ll greet our guests.”

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(Doku Rivendare) #3

“Typical of Callus to want everything done in an instant.” Doku thought to himself as he made his way down to the docking ring in question. Judging by the time of day it had to been early enough in the night/morning to avoid detection by the other members. Doku liked the Anchorage at night, it had subtle feeling to it between the power arcing from exposed wires from the other bays to the hum of the cleaning droids throughout the night. Double checking his gear before coming up on the bay door he made sure that he had all of his winter gear packed.

As the bay door opened Doku noticed the Lambda class shuttle nearly ready for take off while supplies were loaded at a rushed pace. He noticed a familiar face standing by a stack of supplies, more notably how much older he appears; was Callus. He appeared eager to leave, usually something Doku never really experienced with him unless during a battle. Standing next to him was the house Aedile, Taranae Rhode; a very attractive sith who he thought at one glance could destroy you in a second. “I appear to be the first one besides you two. Want to explain to me why and where we are going at this time of night?”

“Nice to see you again as well Doku im glad your still alive and kicking old foggie.” Callus respond with a smirk as he moved himself away from the stake of crates that held him up. “Nice to finally meet you as well my lady, I apologize for not making myself known before as it is my nature sometimes to be left alone.” Doku said as he bowed before the sith warrior as she acknowledged him. “Nice to meet you as well but you can spare the fattlery because i don’t need any of it from you” she said as she smiled back at him. “Were are heading to Hoth Doku that much you need to know. What for I will explain when the rest get here.” Callus said as he started to pace the hangar bay waiting on the others.

“Suit yourself ill place my belongings on the shuttle while I wait for the rest of this excuse to wake somebody this early.” Doku said as he grabbed his gear and moved to find a seat in the shuttle itself. The inside of the shuttle was roomy as is most Lambda shuttles that the ascendant fleet owned. After securing his gear in one of the overhead storage compartments, Doku took his seat on the shuttle and closed his eyes to meditate for a short while. Being able to clear his mind he was able to finally confirm with himself what other outside energy he could feel. A small container next to Callus was the source of it and he knew it had something to do with that.

“What are we getting ourselves into this time old friend?” Doku said to himself as he opened his eyes to the sound of other footsteps approaching the shuttle.

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(Muse Nashesir) #4

Taranae was lucky enough to meet Doku as she prepared to pack her gear into the Lambda-class shuttle.
“I appear to be the first one besides you two. Want to explain to me why and where we are going at this time of night?” he asked. Taranae wasn’t sure she liked the Knight’s manners. She was more used to being treated with a little more respect as Aedile, but having read his files, she should have expected his responses.
Callus and Doku exchanged pleasantries as she looked on, trying to calculate his effectiveness in combat if it came to that on the planet’s surface. His manner was hard, aggressive, and it seemed he couldn’t care less about others around him; that would make him a cold, hard killer. Taranae nodded in satisfaction as he greeted her last. After telling him where they were headed, he picked up his items and climbed aboard.
“I’m not sure what to make of that one, Callus.” she said to her Quaestor.
“Give him a chance, Tara,” he replied, “he’s not as good as you with a lightsaber or blasters, but he’s good to get your back in a battle. Even if he is a little on the careless side. What he does, he does for the love of Plagueis.” Taranae had to admire that as she herself was the same in that respect. She would lay down her life for Plagueis and had done on numerous occasions.
“Then I will take your counsel on that, Callus.” she replied. "He’ll probably be good to have around in a scrape. But now, I’d better get loaded up."
She reached down for her duffel bag, a waterproof one that she always took on missions that was filled with her arctic survival gear; tauntaun skin leggings and a tauntaun coat, with a fur lining and fur around the outside of the hood. The best gear she could imagine to be wearing if she was to take on the harsh climate of Hoth. She swept her long, red hair out of her face as she grabbed the bag and stood, outlined against the backdrop of the lights shining from inside the shuttle. Her form-fitting black outfit a harsh contrast as her cloak swept the ground behind her. She nodded to Callus and turned to board the ramp as she heard others approaching.
“Ok Callus, these are yours.” she said as she motioned to the other figures approaching the shuttle. "But please, give me a shout if you need me. I’ll be storing my items for the ascent."
With that she disappeared inside.
Doku was sat in one of the seats inside, lost in meditation as she entered, so she quietly made her way to the front of the shutlle. She stowed her items away in a footlocker and took up her position in the pilot’s seat. Now she just had to wait, so she began to carry out her preflight checks as she heard voices outside.

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(Wraith) #5

Wraith walks into the hangar where the shuttle was docked. He could see that others have already arrived and ready to depart by the time he got there. Wearing his trademark oversized hood and cloak to conceal his face and body shape. The only thing that could be seen to identify the man was his bright piercing eyes. The eerie feeling of death was also felt as Wraith approached.

Due to the pain he is constantly feeling from his deteriorating bod, he does not speak unless he has to. His eyes and presence says what he wants. besides that, he does not know anyone in the clan enough to speak to any of them. Considering that he possibly knows more, seen more and is well older than everyone, He feels no need to try to impress anyone, not even the leadership .Wraith is a loner.

Walking up to the shuttle, the only thing he has with him is his Lightsaber and his power of the dark side. Its all he need to fight his enemies. He walked into the shuttle, passing several other Plagaians as they sat and/or put their stuff away and awaiting take off, he could feel the studying looks and stares directed towards him. Ignoring most, Wraith makes his way to the back of the shuttle and sits down in the darkest, shadowy section of the rear. The glow from his eyes reflects off the steel walls, makes his presence even more eerie.

If Hoth is really where they are heading, Wraith is lucky his body can’t feel temperature.

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(Kul'tak Drol) #6

Kul’tak couldn’t make his way down the hallway fast enough. His cloak barely had time to complete a full swish before his elongated strides stretched the fabric again. The incessant grey of durasteel was giving him a headache. As much as he liked Plaguies’ headquarters, being cooped up inside a tincan wasn’t his idea of fun. When he had been assigned to this mission, he had said yes fervently. It also pleased him to know his master would be among the team members.

Coming into the hangar bay, he wasn’t surprised to see others had arrived before him. Callus had gathered with a few others, including the mysterious Wraith, but Kul’tak didn’t see his master nearby. A brief moment of concentration allowed him to pick up her presence somewhere in the ship docked beside the group, and he relaxed a little. He strode closer to the group, but stuck to the shadow of the ship out of habit where he leaned against one of the docking arms. Crossed arms, and a lowered hood signified his willingness to listen while avoiding straightforward attention. He wanted to study his new companions before revealing his own thoughts.

He couldn’t help but begin to shiver slightly as the wave of cold oppression flowing from Wraith racked his body. He’d have to remember to keep his distance to prevent it affecting his mission status until he’d gotten used to it. If that was possible. Not everyday you work with a dead guy who’s older than your great grandparents. He suddenly wondered if the being had to eat food through a straw.

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(Vanessa Rhode) #7

Vanessa made her way through the Anchorage, trying to take in as much as she could on her route. There were already a few times she had become lost on her travels through this massive place, but asking around usually got her to her destination; even if the answers were accompanied by glares. Obviously the people here thought that if you were here, you should also know where “there” is.
All the corridors looked the same to her, however, and she wandered through one after the other, mentally trying to replay the directions she had received through her memory. A figure brushed past her, obviously in a great rush to be wherever he was going.

Ah well, she thought, he seems to be headed in the general direction my memory was taking me, so 'll tag along I think.

She started to follow the figure with his long, black cloak sweeping the ground, and wondered at how he didn’t trip himself with the speed he was moving. He rounded a bulkhead and disappeared ahead of her. She ran to catch up, and as she too rounded the same bulkhead, she saw she had reached her destination - the hangar bay.

Numerous shuttle craft took up the most part of this huge area, but the one that grabbed her attention most already had a couple of figures around the loading ramp. She headed towards it and she was glad that she could see the Quaestor of House Karness Muur stood beneath the shuttle craft. She approached gingerly, not sure what her reception would be from the members of the House she hadn’t met yet and walked up to Callus.

“Vanessa Rhode reporting.” she said.

“Good. Glad to see you made it, Protector.” he replied. “Wait, you’re Taranae’s sister are you not?”

Vanessa quickly looked around at the others, only to see that no surprise showed on their part. It was obvious they already knew, be it by her name or other means she didn’t know. The fact was, no-one seemed to worry about it and she let out a sigh of relief. She did look similar to her sister with her red hair and green eyes, but her temperament was totally different to Taranae’s. Whereas Taranae seemed to have developed a hardness and cold demeanour since she arrived here under the teachings of her Master, Vanessa found herself taken under the wing of another after her sister had taken it upon herself to personally make her own Master pay for deceiving her about Vanessa and her mother being killed.

Turning back to Callus, she nodded mutely.

“I see you’ve yet to find your tongue and your proper place here, Vanessa,” he said, “don’t worry. It will come with time and as your powers strengthen.”

She wasn’t sure she wanted to be the cold, calculated person that her sister had become.

“I suppose everyone changes,” she replied, “I’m sure I will too.”

Callus patted her on the back knowingly. “Don’t worry Vanessa. You’ll be fine.”

She could do nothing but wonder about him. He was so kind, yet here was a Sith of obvious power to be in the position he was. Was it really bad to be Sith, or was she just taking all the stories she had heard of them being murderers and evil people too literally? She found herself looking at everyone with renewed faith as she stepped into line to board the shuttle and noticed the figure she had followed into the hangar lurking near one of the support struts. Her sister had mentioned something about having an apprentice and the description she gave did match the figure she was now gazing at. Kul was his name, wasn’t it? The line began to move forwards into the shuttle and she felt for her training saber. As usual it was clipped to her belt and she felt a little safer. She had no idea what this mission would bring, or what Calls would call on her to do. She only knew that she would do it to the best of her ability.

“Oh Vanessa?” Callus broke into her thoughts. “Taranae is aboard if you wish to see her.” He smiled openly at this as he caught Vanessa’s blush at her sister’s name. But now she felt safer and happier, knowing her sister was aboard made the mission one she wouldn’t have wanted to miss. She eagerly boarded the shuttle with a big smile on her face.

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(Brimstone aka Seabr'imsto'nedansr) #8

Brimstone made his way to Docking Ring 13B on the Anchorage. Despite Plagueis taking time to “lick their wounds” from the war with the rest of the Brotherhood, he knew something was important if his Quaestor Callus had messaged him at such an early time.

He tried contacting him before leaving his room telepathically, and all he got was a single word…Hoth. Brimstone was well aware of the harsh winds and frigid blizzards waiting for them

Hoth was nothing like other icy planets. Whether the Chiss homeworld of Cssila or the recent conquered Ziost. Except for the documentation of it being a former rebellion base of operations, it was an unknown.

The turbolift opened up as Brimstone peered out. Callus was finishing talking to a young Naboo female. The Chiss knew her personally from his past dealings with his apprentice, Taranae. He sumises that she must be aboard too.

"You here to wish us Bon Voyage, Brim? " Callus said while watching Vanessa run up the shuttle’s ramp.

"I figured you might need some backup " he said sarcastically. “You think it is wise to allow a Protector to come on this clandestine mission, especially without her Master?”

“She has her sister with her to watch out for her. Besides, good time as any to give her a real taste of the dark side, true?” Callus replied.

Brimstone nodded in agreement as did Wraith. Both looked at each.other and slightly nodded in respect to each other.

Brimstone tightened up his rucksack and headed on board. As he made his way inside, Kul blurted out “Hey Gramps!”. Just then, one of the overhead storage compartments opened up with the door slapping Kul in the back of his head. “Hey, ouch!” Brimstone smiled as a couple others chuckled.

Taranae, up in the cockpit with the Pilot and her sister, stiffened up at hearing “Gramps” and felt the presence of her former Master aboard. “Great!” she muttered.

(Callus Bo'amar) #9

Callus massaged his temples as the blue skinned headache walked up the ramp into the shuttle. He exhaled and picked the case that Taranae had brought him and made his way to the boarding ramp into the ‘chin’ of the Lambda-class shuttle. He strode with purpose into the cockpit and closed the hatch behind him sealing the others from both sight and sound. When he reemerged he no longer had the case and the repulsorlifts had begun to lift the ship off of the deck. He pressed a panel on the wall sealing the cockpit and raising the boarding ramp. He leaned against the bulkhead and surveyed the assembled team. Maybe Taranae was right, the two of them should have done this alone this group looked like a lot of extra weight for them to carry.

There was a gentle shudder as the wings deployed and the shuttle left the docking bay. Captain Sileen’s voice came over the intercom. “Brace for hyperspace.” Callus held himself in place with the Force as the rush of psuedo-acceleration rocked the shuttle as they transition into hyperspace. The captain came again over the intercom. “We are about two days in transit to the Anoat sector, we will try to shave time with course corrections.” Callus nodded and entered the large meeting room in the aft section of the shuttle. Everyone watched him go but no one followed him. Callus waited for a moment and poked his head back into the main compartment, he cleared his throat and went back into the room.

The rest of the team filed in and took seats around a table with a holoprojector inlaid. He inserted a datacard into the table in front of him as a holographic projection of the planet Hoth appeared above the table. He flopped down into a chair as the planet rotated in front of them.

“So,” Callus said to no one inparticular, “what’s the plan?”

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(Wraith) #10

“Two days out.” That lingered in Wraiths mind as he sat in his seat at the rear of the shuttle. Looking into the personnel seating area, where everyone was, he saw all the studying eyes looking at the cloaked figure in the back. He could tell that some of them were uneasy of the ancient being. Others didn’t seem phased at all. “If they only knew…” He thought.

While everyone else is checking and double checking their gear, Wraith just sits and waits, not knowing what awaiting them when they land, and not caring. Just so as long as he gets to cause pain and fear to all who that may hinder their mission.

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(Muse Nashesir) #11

Taranae strolled in and stood by Callus.

“From what we know, the artefact was recovered from sector Bravo Alpha.”

She touched an area on the rotating planet and the view zoomed to show a rather jagged area of Hoth.

“So far all research has told us that the area is unstable and treacherous. We won’t be able to land in the immediate vicinity unless we want to find ourselves at the bottom of a crevasse, or worse still, dead. The surface won’t support even this shuttle, so we will have to land a distance away and make our way on foot through this area.”

She touched the image once again, using her fingers to seemingly open up the map area, showing a narrow edifice through which they would have to pass to get to their destination. She absent-mindedly brushed her hair back from her face as she bent over the projection table and tucked it behind her ear.

“Reports detail indigenous life as tauntaun, wampa and mynock as the main creatures in the area, but no reports of any sentient life whatsoever.”

She stood back and folded her arms, looking around the table. “Our main task is to locate the origin of this item and ascertain whether or not anything more exists.”

Walking over to the table behind them, she opened the case Callus had brought on board once she had boarded earlier. The two halves of rock lay inert in the case, their grey outer showing nothing of interest to anyone.

Callus spoke up next. “Don’t be fooled by their outward appearance. These two halves contain a holographic projection of this planet. It seems that they were created to guide anyone who found them to this precise location. For what means we have yet to discover, but we advise extreme caution. It could be a map to long lost relics or even a trap. I want ideas on what you think would be our best course of action. We need solid strategy, people, not dumb ideas. Anyone?”

(Brimstone aka Seabr'imsto'nedansr) #12

“Well, we can always drop a scouting party and they can zipline down, set up a B.O., and start searching while the others make their way in” replied the Chiss as he studied the Intel. “That way, incase there are any traps or scragglers within, they’ll be dealt with.”

The others then spoke up with their own ideas.

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(Wraith) #13

Wraith just sat there, watching and observing. “what ever these fools decide, I will do, just so as long as no one gets in my way” the dead man thought to himself.

“Personally I liked what the blue thing suggested” Wraith thought. “my how times changed” Wraith stood up, stunned by his movements, almost everyone watched and started in horror as the ghastly being slowly moved towards the table. He layed his bony rotting hands on the table and in a gruff eerie voice, he spoke. “speak up, lets hear more ideas”

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