A read-only archive of discourse.darkjedibrotherhood.com as of Sunday May 01, 2022.

[Nighthawk] The crew of the Nighthawk is going pirate hunting


Nighthawk Run-On!
Pirate Hunting!

Rules are as followed:

250 words MINIMUM per post, please.

Do not double post.

TRY and allow at least two posts between your own, if it’s taking to long for that to happen, go ahead.

I and members of the summit will be posting as well, while said people will get participation (and word count towards CI’s), we will not be place-able

Mostly, have fun, make a good story, and get some character development in!

Will be judge on: Continuity, Story, Entertainment/Feels. Grammar is a distant last, this is about telling a story, not clinically dissecting each and every post, have fun with it!


0900 Hours
AGV Nighthawk
Selen Orbit

The comm unit built into the briefing room table chirped, growing in volume as it grew. It was answered with a groan from the deck, a hair covered hand reaching up to clutch the tabletop as the Captain of the ship tried to pull himself up. He cursed as an empty bottle somehow ended up under one of his knees, before it caused him to slip up and smack his forehead on the surface of the table. Reaching up blindly as he tried again, he hit the receive button.


“Captain? Sir, are you okay? Do we need to send up Lord Bnar–”

“NO! What is it? Report, or, whatever,” groaned the Ryn, feeling as if his head were stuck on a high gravity planet. He wondered idly if this is what getting old was like.

“All crew have made it aboard, Sir! We’ve received our orders as well from the DIA. Also, umm, Sir?”

“Yeah?” the Captain winced, feeling every word stabbing into his skull. “What?”

“We’re still hooked up via umbilical to that courier vessel that you had us dock with last night, should we prepare to detatch yet, Sir?”

Several groans could be heard throughout the spacious briefing room as another person started to rouse. Kordath glanced under the table at the pile blanket covered figure who appeared to be lightly snoring…and drooling. He filed that away for later so he could poke at her for it, see if it got a laugh.

“Negative, mate, umm. The umm, courier crew is still aboard,” he glanced at the other set of sleepers in the room, “any update for the Aedile in that DIA packet?”

“Sir, it seems they want him to come along and observe.”

“Figures, wanna hold my hand on our first real outin’ with me in charge,” groaned the Captain. “Get the ship prepped and give the crew a notice, briefin’ in about….how urgent is that DIA packet?”

“Marked as a level five, Captain.”

“Bugger, briefin’ in about an hour, then,” said the Ryn with a sigh. That’d give him enough time to hit a refresher. He reached over and shook the sleeping form under the table, who let out a yawn and tried to use his hand to pull him back under. “Gotta get up, Veras, show’s about to start, eh? I gotta go get cleaned up and all that, can ya get me mate and your Captain up?”

“Mmmhmm, me and Key’la won’t take long. Thanks for letting us stay on board,” she grinned at him, “you guys have a lot more space than the Zephyr.”

“Sure, sure, use me for me square footage, Luv,” muttered the Ryn, smiling at the woman before stumbling towards his quarters.


55 Minutes later

Kordath gripped the mug of caf in his hand as if his life depended on it as he stared at the mission briefing the DIA had sent along with the rest of his crew. Squinting as his vision blurred for a few moments, he sighed and set the datapad down and turned to the comms officer. With a nod to the officer, the ship’s intercom came on.

“Attention…uhh, everybody. This is the Captain speakin’. We’ve been given a priority mission, security stuff, eh. Seems we got pirates, possibly left overs from the suicidals who thought attackin’ us this past month was a good idea, we don’t know yet. Part of our mission is to ascer…ascert…bugger it, figure out how many of them are out there, ship wise. If it’s a small operation, we’ll likely deal with it ourselves. Otherwise, we get to call in the fleet and go back home early. We can only hope.”

“We also gotta find their base of operations. They’ve been sighted out in the asteroid belt at the edge of system, and been hittin’ supply ships comin’ into system. Also buggerin’ up the mining ops out there, which we can’t have that, eh?”

“Finally, some of ya might have noticed a courier vessel linked up with us when you all got on board. We’re…umm, liaising with the crew, they’re cleared by the DIA and have been doin’ work for the Clan for a while now. They’re gettin’ paid pretty well to play bait for us, gonna skirt the asteroid belt and see what comes out while we sit all stealthed up and watch. These are civilian types, so if it comes down to fightin’ let’s try and keep them out of it, eh?”

“Right that’s about it, hope everyone had a good time on leave…oh, right, almost forgot. Lord Uji, our former Captain, master, friend, and slavedriver is comin’ along to observe. So don’t accidentally shoot the Aedile, folks. We start headin’ for the asteroid belt in about an hour, if you’re on duty, get to your stations. That’s all, may the Force be with us and all that.”

“And all that? Really, Kord?”

“Wot? Tradionantal, innit? Oi,” spoke the Ryn, turning away from the Aedile and towards a passing officer, “Get me Zakath up here, eh?”


“Oh, crew of the Zephyr disembark yet?”

“Umm, yes…Captain…,” mumbled the Ensign, looking uncomfortable.

“Great, get us ready to go.”

“What do you need Zakath for?” asked Uji, walking alongside the Ryn, mug of caf in his own hand.

“Just wanna check up on things,” replied the Ryn, taking a sip before giving the ex-Jedi a grin, “so just you, or Satsi comin’ along as well?”

“Do you really want her on board, Kord?”

“Probably not, doubt you do either, after last night.”

“She does not find out about that, Bleu.” Uji spoke firmly, grabbing the Ryn by his arm.

“Never said I’d tell, mate.”

“Sir! Chief Zakath is on his way up as requested!”

“Grand, let the Commandant know he can be on alert, we get into a tangle we’ll want prisoners, his lads’ll be good for that, eh? Time for another bloody adventure.”

“Don’t sound too excited there, Kord.”

“Yaaay,” muttered the Ryn.


Hangar bay

Mako stood in the hangar bay overwatching the Talons daily Hand to Hand combat training with his Fade, Lilly. They knew better than stop the sparring match as the Captain’s bumbling announcement came over the intercom. As the obviously still slightly drunk Ryn fumbled through the ship wide briefing, the former Krath simply pinched the space between his eye sockets in disappointment. The Battlemaster would have to go have words with the Captain over this, there were just some things the Human wouldn’t let slip.

“Lilly, stop toying with him, we have a drunk Ryn to go see,” The Commandant yelled over at his Fade. The Talon fighting the young Mandalorian woman visibly stiffened in a conditioned fear response. They had seen Lilly fight on near even ground with the Battlemaster, she was indeed a master of her craft. A devilish smirk crossed the Fade’s lips as her master gave her the okay to let loose.

Uji walked up beside Mako while the Talon member began to shriek in pain as the Fade slammed his head into the deck several times.

“She seems frustrated,” the Aedile said to the Commandant. “You must not be…” The Aedile was cut off by his predecessor mid sentence, the icy glare from the former Krath enough to stop the words before they came.

“You seem to think I have a deeper relationship with that Mandalorian than is the truth, Uji. While I might not take offense she may just kill you for such words,” the Commandant’s tone was serious as he conveyed the truth. Uji took a deep gulp as a loud thump followed by a scuffing noise and low high pitched moans echoed through the Hangar. Wiping her hands upon her trousers the Fade skipped over to Mako and Uji, leaving the bloodied and crumpled form of the Talon member behind her. Reaching the two men Lilly leaped forward wrapping her arms around the Aedile and squeezing tightly.

“Uji, it’s been too long since we have seen you. How the Krif have you been?” The Fade spoke as she released the man and took a few steps back. The slender woman’s strength was enough to give the Aedile concern over Mako’s words.

“So about this drunken Ryn?” Uji, quickly deflected the question.

~A few minutes later~

Uji, Mako, and Lilly stood behind the Ryn as he finished his “announcement” to the crew. As the Aedile and the Captain began to converse Lilly and Mako stood back waiting for their chance. It came shortly enough.

“Yaaay,” muttered the Ryn.

“You know, you may get more excited over these milk runs if they didn’t coincide with your drunken debauchery,” the Commandant spoke his tone a joking one for a rare change. The Ryn turned quickly a finger pointing up at the Human, mouth open to speak.

“So did battle with the fearsome dragon within eh?” Lilly chirped up seeming to wrap around from behind the Battlemaster, to stand in front of the Captain, a devilish grin upon her face.

“Da’ bloody, ‘ell does that mean,” the Savant stammered out as he staged back a step.

“Oh, you know, you know,” the Fade said as she crossed her arms and leaned back against Mako.

“She’s been insufferable since I called her beautiful this morning,” the Battlemaster said with a sigh.

“I told him if he says anything like that to me again I would rip his heart from his chest and force him to eat it,” The Fade’s devilish grin widened into a smile and a bloodthirsty glint appeared in her eyes. The Aedile and Captain both swallowed on suddenly dry throats as the Fade finished speaking.

“So, you two going to fill me in on the full DIA packet or will I just have to have killjoy here hack it out of the system?”


Zakath’s Quarters

Nath awoke slowly, it was oddly warm, she was sure her bunk was not as shaped as it currently felt. Slowly she opened her eyes and accustomed herself to the dimmed lighting, the desk in front of her threw her a little, she certainly was not in her quarters.

Blinking hard she squirmed and realized quickly she was sitting on someone’s lap. It took a lot of restraint to not jump out of it but she managed. Instead she looked up and was silently grateful she found her bed to be Zakath and not someone else; he would not mention it to others at least.

“You’re awake.” He spoke with a pleased tone which confused the Iridonian. “I didn’t think you would.” He added after a pause, she blinked hard again as her vision swam in and out of focus. Her head itched and it wasn’t until Zakath’s talon brushed a few strands out of the way that she understood why.

“How long did I sleep?” She felt incredibly stiff and couldn’t help but stretch before curling closer to enjoy the warmth that emanated from him.

“A day. You’re body haz changed.” The toothy smile greeted her wasn’t disconcerting as it once was. A pale hand reached up to touch the full head of long black hair, it was curly, she didn’t even know she had curly hair.

“Apart from the sudden growth of hair you mean?” He gave a nod and used his curled finger to lift her chin to inspect her face.

“It seemz corruption iz in your blood now.” The observation he made was plain to see, blood vessels in her face, hands and other areas of her body had begun to blacken with the potent presence of the Dark side. Both knew it would happen eventually but not at this speed.

“What was the announcement?” She easily deflected not wishing to discuss it further. Instead moving the topic that had rudely awoken her instead.

“The Captain, a meeting is to be held, you can attend and show off your new look.” He teased her mercilessly and for once she did not mind it.

“I will meet you there, I need to wash and do something with this.” She gave the black strands a harsh tug. Zakath bounced his leg, his Apprentice’s bony backside doing an excellent job of cutting off the circulation.

“Thiz should be at least amusing then, before you depart, care to share what happened?” Nath glared up at her Master meeting his verdant hued gaze.

“Not at present.” Zakath gave a slight hiss, his own version of a sigh, she knew he would expect answers.

“Later then.” He bounced her on his lap yet again to regain circulation it was almost like an adult bouncing a child but no one would dare to draw such a parallel. As he did so she gripped at his much larger hand instinctively cutting her finger on the long talon purposefully. She gave the blood a lick as her body immediately healed the damage.

The scent was strong to Zakath, the nuances of her blood had changed, whatever she had done had begun to change her on a genetic level. Whatever Nath tasted she kept to herself keeping her expression stoic, Carefully she finally stood and grabbed the jacket and belt that had been draped across the desk.

“I’ll be fifteen minutes or so.” She did not bother putting them back on as she exited the room, feeling her skin itch with dried perspiration. Idly she figured she must have brewed a large fever whilst she slept.


Zakath shook his head to himself as he watched his apprentice slip out of the room and turned his attention to the portable terminal next to him, his talons carefully tapping out the last of the report that he was working on while Nath slept. After a moment, the door chime sounded.

“Enter.” Zakath barked out, his gaze not wavering from the terminal.

Luiza Dul’vak, his second-in-command of the Nighthawk Security Forces entered, the brunette woman coming to attention as she approached Zakath’s couch, one eyebrow cocked.

“What iz it, Luiza?” The Barabel hissed as he finally tore his gaze from the terminal.

“Our Captain makes a fine orator, doesn’t he?” Luiza chuckled softly as she tucked a errant hair behind her ear. “Speaking of which, an Ensign has passed on a message, our good Captain has requested your presence in his office. The Ensign’s waiting outside. Shall I let him know you’re on your way?”

“Ugh.” Zakath shook his head in disgust as he rose from the couch, bones popping from being in a prone position for far too long. “Do it. Someone elze already told me about the meeting, I was about to leave.”

The Barabel frowned as he glanced up at the embedded loudspeaker hidden somewhere in the ceiling of his quarters, his eyes beginning to glow like hot purple coals as the thought of having to face the Ryn Captain sank into him.

“…and he’ll be en-route shortly. You can go now.” Luiza finished the quick conversation with the Ensign outside and turned to face the Security Chief, her lips dropping into a slight frown. “…and he’s managed to piss you off again.”

“With that idiotic speech?” Zakath snorted. “He doez not have to try hard to irritate me.”

“Clearly.” Luiza smirked slightly as she cocked her head at the Barabel. “Still, you should at least try control those eyes of yours around him, he’s jumpy enough as it is when he’s sober. Sometimes I wonder if he secretly pisses himself whenever he sees you do that.”

“Good.” Zakath growled as he strode past Luiza and stepped outside. “I hope he doez. Either that or get zome backbone into him.”

“Would do wonders for morale around here if he does.” Luiza agreed as she fell into step behind him. “Still makes me wonder why they put him in charge.”

“We will find out at some point.” Zakath replied as they reached the turbolift, a heavy palm slapping the call button. “In the meantime, put our men on ready alert, and make sure our equipment is ready.”

“Yes sir.” Luiza straightened up into a formal posture. “I’ll see to it.”

The Barabel merely offered a toothy smile before stepping into the turbolift.


Zakath could feel his irritation growing as he neared the Captain’s office, his eyes glowing in response to his mood. Slapping the door release, he entered the office.

“…out of the system?”

The Security Chief paused as he quickly noted the presence of Mako, Lily, and Uji in addition to Kordath. His eyes narrowed slightly as they settled on the Ryn Captain.

“Greetingz.” Zakath’s tone was curt but polite despite his thick accent. “Captain, my prezence waz requezted?”

“Yeah, yeah.” The Ryn blinked slightly as he looked up at the Barabel. “Just wanted to check up on things, and you might as well as get the full details over our mission.”

“Az you wizh.” Zakath growled out before he turned toward Uji, bowing his head politely. “Aedile. Welcome back to the Nighthawk.”

“Thank you, Zakath.” Uji replied calmly. “It’s good to be back, if only for a time.”

“Of courze.” Zakath smiled a toothy grin before turning toward Mako and Lilly. “Commandant. Lilly.”

“Zakath.” Mako replied as Lilly nodded toward the Barabel.

“My apprentice will be joining uz shortly” Zakath said, turning his attention back to the Ryn, crossing his arms. “I truzt that is acceptable to you.”

“Oh jo- uh yeah. That’s uh… fine.” Kordath replied, his face growing gloomy at the thought of the Iridonian joining the meeting.

“Good.” The Barabel smiled, his razor-sharp teeth on full display. “I look forward to the briefing… Captain.”


It didn’t take Nath long to arrive back to her quarters, she didn’t like using the communal bathrooms to bathe and so favoured a cold wash. The hair was problematic, it was thick and tangled at the sides of her head, she had no idea how it had become that way and did not have the patience to try and brush the large knots out. Instead she cut them out and in the end decided to shave the sides but could do no more as time was running out. What was left was braided back out of the way; who knew hair was so time consuming to care for, she certainly did not.

Her clothes had been ruined, soaked with something she did not even know. Her stomach lurched as she threw them away, she had a strange kind of attachment to them, they had defined her appearance since the beginning of her time at the Brotherhood. All she had left that were clean to wear were the items she had when Zakath had taken her by force. Nath didn’t have time to linger on her feelings on wearing them. They had become baggy on her since she last wore them, the high collared sleeveless trench coat would need to be taken in at some point but for now her belt would suffice.

With practised ease she laced up the knee high combat boots before clipping the lightsaber to her belt and strapping the dagger back to the small of her back. She practically sprinted out of the door, the turbolift moved far too slowly so she jabbed the button and kept jabbing it until it arrived.

By the time she arrived at her destination her mood had not brightened, in fact the exact opposite. Nath’s body ached and joints clicked and cracked with every movement she made. The only solace she could take was the fact she no longer felt grimy. Without hesitation she walked into the office in silence, everyone looked up to see and the casual discourse that had been taking place died a swift death upon seeing the blackened veins that decorated her face.

She sat in silence taking the unoccupied seat between Kordath and Zakath, the bones in her spine protested with a loud cracking noise as she took her seat. Their eyes felt like they would burn her skin if they stared any harder but the cup of caff on the table caught her attention. Pale nimble fingers grasped it quickly and brought it to her lips.

“Ah…” Kordath began to protest but it quickly died in his throat as Nath growled at him. He did not protest any further instead he gave a slight whimper and sighed softly knowing that he would have to suffer the consequence of his night of intoxication with no relief now.

“…Let’s start the meeting then.” Kordath sighed out, collecting the datapad on the table as he spoke. Zakath eyed his Apprentice carefully, he could easily see the pain in her countenance, hidden well as it was, he had lived what felt like a lifetime with it and knew it well enough when he saw it.

Nath nursed the cup in her grip, using it as a lifeline as she readied herself for the sudden influx of information that was about to be imparted. She was uncertain if it was even worth the effort it had taken her to get here but time would tell.


Kordath sat in awkward silence, having announced the beginning of a briefing he’d never expected to give. The Ryn was still feeling the last vestiges of his hangover, and the Iridonian had stole his caf away. Licking his lips as he shuffled a few data cards around on the table before him, he tried to figure out how best to proceed. He glanced up as he heard Uji make a little cough, covering a chuckle the Captain was almost certain, the Ryn realized they were all staring at him. Trying not to squirm, though his tail was lashing about erratically and anxiety was being broadcast so much he could see the Barabel was starting to twitch a bit, Kordath decided to make a play for time. He reached over and jabbed a small button that was built into the comm that was a part of the table itself.

“Sir?” came a crackled voice from a junior officer waiting outside of the office.

“A fresh round of caf, eh? Umm, anybody else want anythin’? Danish? Water? Nothin’? Just the caf, mate.”

“Yes Sir!”

“Ahem, right, so.”

“Sir, you were going to give us further information on the mission, yes?” came the Commandant.

“Right, course I was. Pirates. In the asteroid belt. Yeah,” stated the Captain, fumbling through the pile of data cards, looking for the proper one. The door opened, causing the Ryn to stand so quickly he nearly knocked his chair back onto the floor as an officer brought a tray with multiple steaming mugs in. Looking abashed, the Captain righted his seat and sat back down, accepting a mug and placing it on the table, trying very, very hard not to meet his Master’s eye. Picking up the proper card he slid it into a port on the small projector set in the center of the table and leaned back in his chair.

“Alright then, this is the belt of rocks on the edge of the Dajorra system, yeah? Full of minerals and such, plenty of stuff the Clan needs to keep things runnin’,” Kord stated, pointing at the image of floating asteroids. Tapping a button it zoomed in, showing an asteroid that appeared to have been converted into a small refinery station, small spacecraft buzzing about it like a hive. “That’d be the Atarax minin’ platform, surprisingly ran by the Atarax corporation, under Arcona’s “protection”, heh. They mine the rocks out here, smelt stuff down in the refinery there, and ship it in system. Somebody’s been causin’ trouble for them and their pilots out here, we can’t have that, eh?”

“Seems strange they didn’t send something like the Darkest Night or one of the other cruisers out here.”

“Eh, they want us to check things out a bit before they commit any o’ the Big Guns, Mako. See what kinda trouble it is first, methinks.”

“Zo, piratez hmmm.”

“Aye, pirates. Brazen lil’ bastards too, been hittin’ minin’ ships and others that skirt too close to the belt on their way to Ol’val. Can’t be havin’ it. Between loss of metals to upkeep the fleet and trade to the station, somebody is tryin’ to choke us or they just happen to have found the right spot to annoy us. So here’s the thing,” the Ryn shut off the projector and turned to look at the senior officers.

“One,” he said holding up a single finger, “the first pirate ship we find, we shoot to disable. Two,” he stated, ticking up another, “the Talons board and put the crew to sleep, try not to kill all of ‘em. Three,” the Ryn turned finally to fully look at his Master, trying not to trace the black veins with his eyes, “our Nath here gets to have some quality time with the poor scumbags. We find out where they’re operatin’ out of of, we shut ‘em down.”

“Now, um, gonna be honest, I didn’t plan on this second briefin’, figured most of it was self explanatory. That and I was gonna do one on ones while we hunted, eh? So that’s you lot covered…uhhh, Commandant, if you could ya know, take Lily with ya and leave us for a bit? Need to have a word with our security specialists here.”

“Oh good, can I go back to tossing Talon’s around?”

“You’re going to make them feel so useless, you know that right?”

Kordath watched the two leave, the door shutting behind him before he sighed and rubbed at his face.

“Sorry, dunno how this happened, wanted to have a word with Zakath before we got to far. And with you, Mast…Nath. I’ve been leavin’ things well enough alone, and trusting the big scaly one here to do what was best. Still, we’re goin’ into the unknown here, I gotta know if you’re alright, luv. Ya look, well ya look different, to put it lightly. Are ya gonna be able to do the bit where ya cut ‘em and ask the questions? And…well, are ya gonna be alright?”

Kordath swallowed back some caf and waited, watching his old Master carefully.


Uji leaned against the frame of the ship, the caf in his hand covering the momentary scowl on his face. The tension between the small family was evident. The father remained silent, Zakath’s reptilian features remained cold, calculating. Nath’s eyes were lit with anger at the apprentice’s words. Kordath shrunk under the heavy gaze before he righted himself awaiting his master’s answer.

“Is this necessary?” The words caused all three to turn and look at him. The Aedile weathered the irritated stares with the calm of having endured such scrutiny in the past.

“If Nath is still a hazard to the completion of our mission, return her to the Brig and deal with this on your own time.” Uji took another long pull from his caf as he watched Nath bristle in response, the Iridonian tensing as she looked between the Captain and her Aedile.

“That will be-” Zakath began to speak before seeing his captain raise his hand.

“Unnecessary,” Kordath finished. Nath exhaled a sigh as mutely as she could; it was not one of relief, but rather of frustration.

“I will be perfectly blunt regarding this. When crew advance on me with live ammo, I will neutralise the threat to my person - which is what I have done in the past.” She spoke with a chilling tone, meeting Uji’s gaze head on.

“Regardless, if the concern still exists, then the Captain should address the issue” Uji turned towards the Ryn, waiting for an answer.

“Then I fail to see why you brought it up, he is more than capable of doing so.” Her retort was swift but calm as she reclined back taking the cup she stole from Kordath.

“I agree.” Zakath said as he crossed his arms, his glowing violet eyes the only sign of his displeasure at the turn this conversation was taking. “Each time an incident occurz, she waz provoked, unintentionally or intentionally. If something happenz that warrantz armed intervention againzt Nath, send me. I can defuze the situation much eazier than anyone elze on thiz ship.”

Nath began to speak but stopped as Zakath turned and shot her a warning look, his eyes narrowing dangerously. The Iridonian growled softly under her breath but relented for the moment, taking another sip from her cup of caf as she glared at the others.
“Iz thiz acceptable, Captain?” Zakath asked as he returned his gaze to Kordath.

“Yah, I see no problem wit’ that.” The Ryn replied quickly, his eyes shifting uneasily between the three people clustered around the table. “Let’s move on, shall we? Zakath will intervene if necessary whenever we have an issue with Nath, and uh… we’ll just try to avoid provokin’ her, right?”

“As I am no longer Captain of the Hawk, I will defer to the three of you.” Uji nodded, his smile hidden behind his cup.

“You are no longer the Captain, which begs the question. What are you doing here?” Nath ran her nail along the edge of the cup, her eyes narrowing as she watched her friend and former Captain.

Uji shifted in place, considering his words for a moment. “I am here as a representative of the Summit’s interests. Available to assist as necessary, only if needed.”

“What are those interests Uji?” Kordath’s voice quivered slightly as he spoke before finding his resolve. The Aedile turned to face the Ryn, a mixture of surprise and irritation on his features.

“Exactly when did this briefing turn into an interrogation?” Nath’s lips split into a predatory smile at the Aedile’s words. Kordath leaned forward resting against his desk as he nodded to his interrogator.

“Suddenly very defensive aren’t you Uji? Did I ever tell you what your tells are when you’re lying, or holding information from someone?” Uji turned back towards the Iridonian, his features growing cold. He came to find himself seeing for the first time Nath’s enjoyment at stalking her prey, her Master sat to her side. Zakath’s violet eyes narrowing as if piercing the Aedile to see what was buried beneath.

“You start by staring directly at your accuser as if you can intimidate them into backing down, normal for someone like you. When they don’t - or they press you further - you begin to get angry, your features change to show a lack of response as if retreating internally. It’s rather amusing to watch it play out…” The Interrogator’s eyebrow rose as she enjoyed the crease along the Aedile’s features form in his frustration.

“So you can attempt to continue lying now that everyone knows you’re lying, or you can tell us the truth.” Nath sat back into her chair, her hand coming to rest by Zakaths.

“I am not required to provide details as to my involvement. I am here to ensure the Summit’s interests are protected. Those interests coincide with the success of this mission of that I can assure you.” Uji turned from the Master and Apprentice, a silent acknowledgement to being out of his depth in dealing with the two of them.

Before the Aedile could begin to speak, Kordath reached across the table lifting a datapad. “Zakath, didn’t you mention that we’re continuing to experience problems with the ship’s environmental cleansers?”

“Yez Captain, as engineering lazt reported the repairz that were underway have been delayed due to our departing.”

“Well, it sounds like the Summit’s interests may have to be handled by another ship. Wouldn’t want someone other then me getting sick would we, eh?” The Ryn sat the datapad down, the flashing “failure” screen of a game blinking rapidly on the screen.

“Tell Kally to return the ship to drydock until we can get that looked at, yea?” Kordath’s voice remained perfectly neutral as he began to stand.

“What do you think you’re doing Kord?” Uji stepped to intercept the Ryn, forcing the Captain back into his chair as he stood over the smaller man looking down…

“Look mate, I followed your orders when the drek hit the fan before. Did so without question, nearly got us all killed more en once.” The Ryn’s gray eyes locked with the Aedile’s, anger and a bitter resentment rising up for a moment as he spoke.

“When you’re standing on the bridge of the Darkest Night and giving orders? I’ll follow em. When you’re on my ship and holding back information? I’ll have you confined to quarters and released on our return to Selen.”

The Aedile was unsure of whether to be furious or proud of the Ryn. He was, however, clearly aware of the Barabel and Iridonian who had risen and taken places to either side of him the moment he had moved towards their Captain.

“Orderz, Captain?” Zakath growled out softly, one hand having dropped to his lightsaber as he stared directly at Uji, his violet eyes glowing like hot coals.

“That would depend on Uji, wouldn’t it, mate? What do you say?” The Ryn raised an eyebrow as he leaned back into his chair, a slight grin touching his lips.

Uji shook his head, keeping his hands far from his saber moving them out to either side for Zakath and Nath to see them empty before clasping them behind his back. “Perdition

“The organization behind the attacks on Scepter, the damage to our House and the Clan… They may be involved with the attacks, as such. It is my responsibility to ensure that should an Agent of Perdition be discovered, they are returned for questioning by the Summit.” Uji stepped aside, ensuring he could see the three Dark Jedi at once.

“That should suffice, the involvement of Perdition does not change your assigned mission or how to deal with them.”


Captain’s Office

“Better than nothin’, I suppose.” Kordath grunted as he nodded at Zakath and Nath, who subtly relaxed and returned to the table. “But uh, Nath, still need an answer to my question before all this. You able to do your job and all that?”

“Don’t question my competence, Kordath.” Nath replied with a long frosty look at the Ryn. “Your prisoners will be alive after interrogation. I can’t attest to their mental competence after it, however. That will depend on the prisoner.”

“…right.” Kordath was not quite able to hide the quiet gulp from the three Dark Jedi in the room. “Any other uh… business we need to get out of the way?”

“Yes.” Uji replied as he retrieved his cup of caf. “Inform Mako that I will be accompanying the Talons when the Nighthawk begins boarding operations.”

“Any particular… reazon?” Zakath asked as he gazed at Uji with narrowed eyes, his heavy talons suddenly itchy for blood.

“I wish to see the Talons’ performance for myself.” Uji favored the three with a thin smile. “I will be accompanying them as an observer only, there will be no interference with the conduct of operations, don’t worry.”

“Hmm.” Zakath grunted before returning his attention to the Ryn. “Captain, may we be excuzed? I believe our buzinezz here iz done, unlezz you have something elze.”

“Yeah, you can get outta here.” Kord waved away at them.

Zakath bowed his head slightly before turning and striding out, trailed by Nath, who shot a suspicious look over her shoulder before slipping out the door.

“…did Zakath actually just ask you for permission to leave?” Uji asked, staring at Kordath with an eyebrow raised.

“…I guess I’m growin’ on him?” Kord blinked as he stared at the office door.


“He’s not here to observe.” Nath said quietly as the two entered the turbolift.

“No.” Zakath agreed as he pressed the button for the hangar bay. “At leazt not entirely. He’z here for something elze. What, I don’t know, though I do believe him about Perdition. But the way he sayz it, it makez my talonz want to rip out hiz throat.”

“Well nobody likes being lied to.” Nath replied as she took one of Zakath’s talons into her hand, running a finger delicately along the sharpened edge. “I wouldn’t mind a chance to have Uji on my table, myself.”

“Now that’z a pretty picture.” Zakath flashed a toothy smile down at Nath. “Perhapz one day you will be fortunate enough to have that.”

“Perhaps.” Nath said after a few seconds, before suddenly digging her finger into the sharpened point and jerking backward, causing a long scratch to appear along the length of it, which rapidly began to close, despite the sudden surge of dark blood. She released Zakath’s hand and licked at the healing wound. “Regardless, Uji just made my job harder, because now I think there are further questions to ask, but I don’t know what.”

“Hmm.” Zakath growled softly to himself as he considered the problem. “When we capture a ship, I will make arrangementz for you to retrieve any data it may carry. Perhapz that will help your inteorrgationz.”

“Thank you.” Nath smiled thinly at the Barabel. “That will be helpful.”

“Of courze.” Zakath nodded slightly as the turbolift began to slow to a stop. “I’m going to fill Mako in on what juzt happened. Coming?”

“No.” Nath replied after a second’s consideration. “I want to double-check my tools and make sure everything is prepared for the coming interrogations.”

“Alright.” Zakath replied as the doors slid open. “Later then.”

“Later.” Nath nodded slightly as the Barabel strode out of the turbolift and into the bustling hangar, her face impassive as the doors slid shut after him.


Hangar Bay

As Zakath entered the hangar bay, his gaze was drawn instantly to the commotion at the far end of the bay, where multiple pairs of soldiers were fighting each other in hand-to-hand combat, in which Zakath’s trained eye noted were barely holding back from lethal blows. The Barabel smiled to himself as he headed their way. The Talons had earned his respect, especially during countless drills with his own security team. For the moment, the Talons held a slim lead in successes in boarding operations against the Nighthawk security defenses, although Zakath was working hard to improve training, and he was confident that the gap between the two friendly rival groups would soon close.

“Commandant.” Zakath greeted with a slight nod as he strode toward the pale human, noting the presence of Lilly next to him. “Lilly.”

“Chief.” Mako nodded to the Barabel before his gaze was torn to a slight mis-step by one of his men, barking out harshly. “Hey, keep your kriffing hands up! Are you trying to get your head smashed in?”

“Hey Zakath!” Lilly greeted the Barabel with a grin, brushing back a few strands of black hair, her blue eyes flashing mischievously in the harsh glare of the hangar bay lights. “We still need to have that sparring match set up, it’s been a while.”

“Of courze.” Zakath smiled, his razor-sharp teeth on full display. “Perhapz once thiz operation iz over.”

“Good, I’ll hold you to that.” The woman’s grin widened. “You’re a much better challenge than some of these guys. So much more fun.”

“So good to know.” Zakath replied with a bark of harsh laughter. “But I need a word with the Commandant, if you pleaze.”

“Oh yeah, sure.” Lilly waved a hand. “Back to kicking these guys’ asses.”

“Get to it.” Mako grinned slightly as he watched his Fade stride off to a pair of Talons before returning his gaze to Zakath. “What’s going on, Chief?”

“I juzt finizhed the meeting with Uji and the Captain.” Zakath said as he felt his grin fade to a thin serpent’s smile. “Uji will be accompanying you on your operaton az an… obzerver.”

“So that’s why he’s here.” Mako grunted as he mulled over the implication. “So he’s not going to interfere with my command or anything?”

“No,strictly obzerving. He thinkz we might dizcover agentz of Perdition.” Zakath hissed softly, his talons flexing. “Suppozedly, he iz here to enzure they are taken alive for interrogation by the Summit, nothing more.”

“Supposedly?” Mako asked, an eyebrow raised. “Don’t believe him?”

“No.” The Barabel replied bluntly. “He iz lying or holding something back. Which, I am not yet sure.”

“Hmm.” Mako mulled over that for a few seconds. “Guess all we can do is keep our eyes open.”

“Indeed.” Zakath agreed. “And I have a small favor to azk.”


“Once the ship iz captured, if you can relay any relevant information in the ship’z databankz to me, I will pazz it on to Nath.” Zakath replied. “It would help in her interrogation of our incoming prizoners.”

“Yeah, I think we can manage that.” Mako replied after a second’s pause.”I’ll let you know as soon as we got everything prepared for you.”

“You have my thankz.” Zakath said, with a nod of his head.

“Not a problem.”


Captain’s Office

“I’m hurt, mate, I am.”

“Oh comeon don’t start.”

“Ya lied to me, Uji, I thought we were pals? Why didn’t ya just tell me why you was comin’ along, it’s a perfectly legitimate reason.”

“We’re trying to limit the amount of information about Perdition getting out, we don’t know how big they are, we don’t know what assets they have out here. I’m hoping we cleaned most of it up already, but they likely have ships operating in the area still, somebody moved their troops around anyways. Besides, Kord, Dassac is still out there.”

Kordath shuddered at the mention of the Chistori Sith. He’d spent about a week in the One Sith Elder’s ‘care’ when they’d attempted to invade Selen. Torture, physical and mental, had left scars on the Ryn that he still drank to forget. Occasionally he could hear the old lizard whispering in his brain, he’d taken to mental exercises after that encounter. It was likely the only reason he’d not done something unforgivable. After all, shortly after escaping the Sith he’d nearly lost control and cut Uji down in a turbolift before regaining his senses. Another encounter with Dassac could only spell trouble.

“But that doesn’t explain why–” Kordath was cut off as the comm speaker squealed to life loudly, cutting through the privacy settings. “Oh kark.”

“Captain! The bait has attracted some attention, we’ve got inbound on the sensors!” came the crackling voice.

Bleu groaned and tapped a button, bringing up the holo projector again as it showed the courier vessel out ahead of them. Coming out of the asteroid belt, trailing them but picking up speed was an old model Corellian Corvette. Someone on the bridge attached a quick data analysis to the feed, showing off the ship’s capabilities and likely armament.

“We can take that,” mumbled the Ryn, staring at the feed and feeling a grin start to spread across his face. “Come along, boss, we might have this in the bag already, eh?”

“Let’s hope so, the looks Nath is giving me I’m not sure I want to be aboard for too long.”

“Made yer own bed mate.”

“Yeah yeah.”


“Stealth integrity is holding, Sir!” came the first report as the Ryn stepped on to the bridge. His second, the Sephi was standing before the much larger holo display that dominated the center of the bridge. Rulvak gave him a short nod before turning back to the image.

“Sound general quarters and all that, get people to their positions. Give the Commandant a ring as well, his lads are about to have some fun methinks. Suggestions, Commander?” Kordath stood up straight despite his lack of true military prowess he had been learning to fake it. Confidence in front of the crew was more important than anything else, they knew how to do their jobs, he mostly just had to let them.

Qurroc pointed at the display, “I think it’d be best if we swung about their aft and put ourselves between them and the asteroid field before shutting down the stealth field and engaging. We can keep up with them easily in open space, the Nighthawk is faster by far, but they may know the belt better than we do.”

Kordath nodded in agreement, “Makes sense, let’s do that. Kalon! Take us about on the Commander’s vector!”

“Yeah yeah,” came a reply from the helmsman station, which the Ryn chose to ignore. The security door at the back of the bridge opened, allowing the Barabel entrance and a few other officers.

Zakath glanced at the display, taking it in at a glance before grunting. He moved on to the tactical station to oversee it.

“We pickin’ up anythin’ else on sensors?”

“No, Sir. But we’re having trouble getting much from the asteroid belt due to the mineral and ore saturation.”

“Aye, that’s why we sent the courier ship out as bait. Alright, get us into position and we’ll give these pirates the scare of their lives.”

The command crew watched as the ships moved through the holo display, the Corvette slowly catching up with the courier which had begun evasive maneuvers. The Nighthawk was steadily gaining on the pirate vessel, the calculations suggesting they’d catch up nearly a minute before the courier would be in range. Kordath sighed in relief, getting those girls into trouble, at least this kind of trouble, wasn’t what he’d hoped for. He saw Uji visibly relax a bit as the numbers confirmed themselves.

“You headin’ down to join the Talons, mate?”

“In a minute, want to see how this starts.”

“Hmm, observin’ to the end.”

“I swear you’re never letting that go are you?”

“We are in range, Captain!”

“Stygium field down! Shields up! Prepare weapons!”

“Copy that!”

“Target iz locked, Captain.”

“Proceed, Mister Zakath,” spoke the Ryn with a little smile. It was fun getting the drop on somebody else, way more so than his usual luck. A warning alarm started to scream through the bridge and Bleu felt as if the Universe’s sick sense of humor had just kicked on. “What is that for?”

“Captain! We’ve got another vessel exiting the asteroid field!”

“Oh of bloody course we do! What do we know!?”

“Sending it to the display, Sir!”

“Oh kark me is that another Corvette?” Kordath looked at the display and did his own calculations, even while the projection updated itself. The ship chasing the courier was turning about to engage them already, and they were already in range of the new Corvette. A projection number appeared, stating that an engagement with both vessels was not in their favor. Kordath was almost surprised the numbers were still in the double digits.

“The new arrival is hailing us, Sir.”

Bleu hung his head for a moment and sighed. Out maneuvered by pirates in their own system. Zakath was never going to let him live this down, if they survived. Something skittered across his mind, causing the Ryn to shudder and feel cold. Raising his head slowly he stared at the ship, feeling a primal fear grow. He forced it down with some effort and turned to his Aedile.

“Sir. I’d like ya to leave the bridge.”

“What? If there’s someone of authority hailing us, I’m the–”

“Sir. I’m the person of authority on this ship. Remember. I’d like you to leave the bridge. Please, Uji.”

The Human gave him a quizzical look, “Kord what’s wrong?”

“Sir. Please leave the bridge,” stated the Captain again before leaning forward and lowering his voice. “I’d rather he not know the man who lead the counter offensive is on board me ship, mate.”

Uji gave him another odd look before nodding, “Your ship, Captain.”

Kordath counted to ten after the door closed before nodding to his communications officer. The holo projection shifted over to show the bridge of a Corellian Corvette and several officers. The Ryn stiffened as he heard a clicking sound. He noted Zakath sit a little straighter as well, the sound of talons on metal plating were distinct, no surprise the Barabel could recognize the sound as well. A toothy maw in to view, red eyes set above them as the Chistori’s face filled the screen.

“I see we’ve caught some Arconans out on their own. What a pity. Oh, oh my is that our old friend, Bleu?”

“Dassac,” growled the Ryn, trying to hold on to anger rather than fear.

“My my, is that a Captain’s uniform they’ve dressed you up in? How amusing. Do they not know the extent in which I twisted your little mind, Ryn?”

“Piracy, Dassac? You’ve truly fallen low, eh?”

“Mmm, piracy for the sake of piracy would be one thing, Kordath my friend. We both know that’s not why I’m still out here, biding my time and preparing my forces. Your little friend Tameike put up an admirable defense of the system, but we still decimated the Scepter organization. I cannot wait to have him in hand, I’m sure they’ll send him out after we’ve destroyed you and your sneaky little vessel.”

“Destroy us? How wasteful and uncouth of you, no attempts to sway me to your side again?”

“Mmm, adorable, playing for time. As lovely as getting you back to work on would be, I fear that you will not survive the destruction of your vessel. Such a shame.”

Kordath glanced at the tactical station, Zakath was shaking his head and had a grim look on his face. This was bad, this was…the Ryn sighed, recalling the other bit in his orders packet that he’d not shared with his officers yet.

“Fine. I got a proposal for you, ya big toothy bastard,” growled the Ryn. He could see Dassac’s eyes light up with glee. “Me. Let the Hawk go, let the courier ship go, they’re just civilians we hired anyhow, no threat to you or your operations. Let them go, and I’ll dump myself in a pod. Then we can have a proper conversation again, eh?”

“You think you’re life is worth a stealth vessel? Please, Bleu, your sense of self importance has expanded greatly since our last chat.”

“Well, let’s see,” spoke the Ryn, holding up a finger, “One, the fellow who stopped your push is me best mate. Two, the Shadow Lady and me are pretty close as well. Three, I’m a bloody Captain, who knows what I might know, eh? You want Tameike to come out and play? Let the Nighthawk go, I’ll come along, no muss, no fuss.”

Dassac narrowed his eyes and watched the Ryn, who was trying his hardest not to shake. From somewhere on the Corvette’s bridge a feminine voice could be heard, “You can’t be seriously considering this, Master! The one who killed Tiysha is on that ship! I can feel him, my Lord!”

“Quiet Lysha! Your sister died because of her own recklessness. She shouldn’t have tried to face the Neti on her own, she has no one to blame but herself. Now then,” Dassac turned back to the cam, “You trust me to let your vessel go if you should surrender yourself, Bleu?”

“Let’s go with this, Dassac, buddy, pal. The Hawk is fully capable of destroyin’ at least one of your ships before she gets blasted her self. Which one do ya think she’ll go after, hmm? Give me fifteen minutes and I’m yours, gotta make arrangements.”

“You have five. I so look forward to seeing you again, little Ryn.”

“Yeah, yeah,” muttered the Captain as the display blinked out.’

“Sir you cannot be serious, this is a trick of some kind, right?” asked the Commander. Kordath sighed and pulled a data card from his pocket and handed it to the Sephi.

“That’s the rest of my orders, Rulvak. After this mission, or whenever I felt it was prudent like, I’m to hand over command to ya. Got a postin’ on Selen waitin’ for me, finally get to be on solid ground again,” spoke the Ryn, smiling weakly.

“Thiz iz a miztake, Captain.”

“Probably, but we won’t win a fight against both of those ships, not without help. So get help, or try and get the drop on them when you can. Don’t worry, you all are familiar enough with me to track me through the Force. I’m sure I’ll be broadcastin’ pretty strong.”

“What, when they’re torturing you?”

“Pretty much. I’ve got a pod to catch, lads,” Kordath sighed and straightened, giving his best attempt at a salute to the Sephi. “Permission to disembark, Captain?”

“…granted. Crazy Ryn.”

“I’ll be called worse, ‘fore the day is over, mate.”


Kordath had managed to slip past Uji on his way to the pods, the Human would have tried to stop him from doing this, probably. The pod made a loud pop sound as it shot off, and jarred as a tractor beam got hold of it. Long minutes passed with the Ryn keeping his eyes shut, breathing deeply as he tried to send some last thoughts out via the Force, towards a few friends on Selen.

Sorry, Blinky, here I go again, eh?

He opened his eyes as the pod settled and the hatch popped open.

“Well, this is gonna hurt,” muttered the Ryn as he climbed out.


Hangar bay

The Talons became a flurry of activity as the sound to general quarters echoed throughout the hangar.

“I want that armor fully sealed in 30 seconds!” Mako screamed out at the special forces operatives known as the Talons.

“This isn’t a drill,” Lilly piped up through the voice output speaker on her own Mandalorian battle armor, the pressurized seals squealing in her ears as she tested the fit. Similar sounds echoed from the Talon’s body armor as they prepared for the possibility of ship to ship boarding. Mako’s second Fade, Vincent, leaned against the side of his shuttle, the man’s flight suit already on long before the rest of the Talons even thought about which foot to put into what boot. The ‘old man,’ as the Talons affectionately called him was always prepared…

Mako removed the grey helmet and checked his wrist computer, hitting a few buttons to begin his suit’s sync with the ship’s bridge.”Talons, sync with the Hawk, let’s give her some eyes boys,” the Commandant said as he turned to the turbolift to see Uji exiting it.

The Aedile waved to Mako as he made his way toward the Talons.

“It’s bad Henymory, we got two hostile corvettes out there,” a concerned look covered the former Captain’s face as he looked into the calculating emerald eyes of the Commandant.

“Have Lilly and Vincent help you suit up, sir, I’m going to get a look at our tactical situation.”

“Suit up, we are going to go out in the shuttle, that’s suicide!” The Aedile began to protest until those emerald orbs focused upon him seeming to glow with unguided murderous intent. “Mako?”

“Who said anything about hitching a ride, I think it’s time we took a stroll,” the Commandant replied simply, laying a sympathetic hand on Uji’s shoulder. Walking toward the turbolift, the Battlemaster called back over his shoulder, “Lilly, get this man geared up.”

A cackling laugh echoed from the young woman as she skipped over to the Aedile, a black pressurized under armor suit in hand.

“Looks like I get to have some fun with you, Tameike.”


“Commandant on deck,” the call came from one of the junior bridge officers as Mako strode onto the bridge. He had felt Kordath’s presence leaving the Nighthawk as the lift had ascended, a visual scan of the bridge confirmed this.

“Rulvak, what is the situation?” the Battlemaster called out to the Commander as he approached the man.

“Kordath has surrendered to buy us time,” The Sephi replied as the battle armor clad man came to a stop beside him.

“Thiz Zephi is the captain now,” Zakath’s reptilian voice came from the other side of the tactical display table. The camera feed from the Talon’s already synced and streaming data to the table. A toothy grin crossed the Barabel’s face as he watched the 3d composite image of Uji fidgeting while Lilly attached the codpiece to the Aedile’s armor.

“Congratulations, what is our situation?”

“Two hostile Corvettes, one carrying Dassac and his apprentice.”

“Very well, which one is not carrying Dassac?”

“This one here,” Nath piped up from beside Zakath.

“Good, so here is what I am thinking, the Talons and myself take our observer for a little walk over to that Corvette. Once there we will magnetically secure ourselves and a breaching charge here, directly behind the bridge. We will send a single 2 second burst of static over coms once this is done and then wait,” The Commandant pointed to the spot on the Corvette without the Elder onboard. The Security Chief nodded before the former Krath continued.

“Once the Nighthawk is prepared for a fight send us a single burst of static and we will breach the Corvette. We will secure the bridge and then sweep the ship for prisoners. This will allow the Nighthawk to only have to worry about engaging one of the Corvettes.”

“Seems like a solid plan,” the new Captain said with a nod.

“Mako, I will watch over the Talon’s feed to pick out potential prisoners for interrogation,” the Zabrak woman spoke.

“Very well just let us know via coms who to take, are we green lit to kill the rest?”

“Yessss,” Nath seemingly hissed her reply.

“Good luck, Commandant,” Rulvak said waving a hand to dismiss the Battlemaster.
Hangar Airlock

“Final check, make sure your suits are sealed, your oxygen is on and has an extended supply. Ensure that the air jets connected to your packs are functioning properly. Vincent prepare to open the airlock once I give the green light.”

“YES SIR,” the Talons answered up as their hands expertly flew over their gear.

“I will be waiting in the shuttle incase you need extraction, Mako,” The old Fade replied, concern in his voice.

“Talon One is a go,” the first Talon’s leader, Seth, piped up.

“Talon two is all green,” the second Talon’s leader, Sergei, sounded off in turn.

“Uji and myself are good,” Lilly spoke up as she patted the Aediles shoulder a wicked grin under her helmet.

“Mako, is this really safe to do?” Uji asked as the he considered the implications of having nothing but a suit between him and the void of space.

“Kill the light, Vincent, open my doors,” The Commandant ordered, the lights in the airlock going out as the pressure in the room equalized with the outside. With a low groan the outer door opened slowly, starlight illuminating the Talons. Mako looked through his helmet at his troops checking for any streams of air that would signal a leak in the suit.

“Good, no leaks, suit integrity seems to have been maintained across the board. Let’s move out Talons, maintain radio silence. Uji, sir, to answer your question, this is just as safe as submitting yourself to Bnar to be his test subject.”

“Great,” the Aedile groaned as Mako pushed off the deck, the Talons following suit. Lilly gave the Savant a little shove to get him moving and followed behind.

The airlock closing behind them, the Talons free floated for the first hundred meters before activating their air jets. Silently, they maneuvered toward the corvette they had targeted. Air jets activating only to correct course. Reaching the ship from the rear, they skimmed over the ship’s top to their position just behind the bridge. Sergei and Seth laid the breaching charges as the rest of the group activated the magnates in their gloves and boots. Once the charges were set the whole group clung to the outside of the corvette like a barnacle to a whale. Holding the transmit button and increasing the squelch for 2 seconds, Mako sent the signal to the Nighthawk. Now they just had to wait. Looking up Mako noticed Uji flashing him a rather rude gesture.


Nath carefully sat herself in the leather seat, next she took up the headset and ensured it functioned correctly. Then she began to test the camera feeds whilst the crew were still in the hangar. The constant chatter in her ear quickly died away as the radio silence began. One by one the feeds went live, she glanced over each one for a final time before allowing herself to recline back.

Zakath drifted by as she did, he eyed the screen and placed a clawed hand to her shoulder as he passed, all he received was a small growl of acknowledgement. She could feel her Apprentice as he shifted further away, a small cold knot brewing into her belly as apprehension settled in. No longer was Kordath’s presence imprinting itself as close; it was an unsettling experience one she could not shake away. Instinct demanded she act, and to do so now without hesitation. With a withering sigh she repressed it back down once more.
Time had passed her by far too quickly, lost in her own thoughts she had barely witnessed the Talons as they latched themselves onto the ship, it was only when her gaze had refocused itself that she noticed. Idly she turned to Rulvak and Zakath who seemed to be having a hushed conversation before she cleared her throat to get their attention.

“Talons are in position.” Nath’s black gaze pierced like a dagger into her new Captain as she awaited his command. Rulvak’s viridian gaze blinked as he looked back to the console close by. He did not notice Zakath as he shared a mute conversation with his Apprentice; a warning to not do anything rash.

“Very well, let’s begin.” It was the only confirmation the Iridonian needed as she sent the burst of static across the comm to signal the beginning of the assault. Nath observed the breach with bored eyes, her fingers rhythmically drumming on the edge of the console; it took perhaps ten minutes before she could stand it no longer.

Zakath was the only one who noticed her emaciated body as it slipped into the cockpit. She strode behind Kalon’s chair and leant upon it.

“Nath.” Kalon greeted her in the same manner he always did. His gaze fixated on ensuring the Nighthawk remained intact but recognising her presence easily enough.

“You’re going to get bored stuck here.” She noted elbows resting on the back of his chair preferring to speak his language.

“The chair is fairly comfortable.” He responded in kind.

“It is, but this doesn’t slake your wants, I know you well enough Ori’Vod.” She used her fingers to turn his head to look at her. “Come, we both need to be over there.”

Kalon quickly jerked his head back to where it had been to concentrate before replying. “I can’t abandon my post.”

“The path is clear, find a replacement.” There was a pause between them before Kalon muttered a curse under his breath. He acted swiftly, standing and allowing another to take over before following her out towards the turbo lift. Zakath noted the pair as they departed, taking himself to one side to send a message before returning to the newly appointed Captain’s side.

The ride down in the turbo lift was painful for the Iridonian, Kalon grabbed the braid at the back of her neck inspecting it curiosity glowing in his eyes.

“I saw you yesterday, you didn’t have this much hair then.”

“It grew.” The curt response was quick to come from her lips.

“Did it grow so fast down there?” His gaze drifted down towards her hips only stopping when his hand had to deflect a punch she aimed half heartedly at his nose.

“I’ve killed people for less insulting comments.” The smirk on the Mandalorian’s face grew as she spoke.

“I know.” Both of them knew she wouldn’t even try to inflict any serious damage on him. “I like the change, veins look a little unhealthy though.”

“Why do you like the hair?” She couldn’t hide the curiosity around him.

“Makes you look more female.” Nath wasn’t certain how to respond to this, fortunately the turbo lift decided this was the opportune time to open its doors.

“I need to pick up some things.” She tugged the braid out of his grip before making a move towards her quarters.

“What things?” He followed quickly enough, coming to a stop as she keyed in the code to unlock the door. His question was answered by a loud growl that emanated from within the dark room. Kalon tensed hand going to his rifle only to have Nath bat his hand away and whistle low.

The growling died away and the sound of sharp claws click on the floor paneling as the beast approached cautiously to its Master’s summoning.


AGV Nighthawk
Moments before the Talon’s Spacewalk

The crew of the Nighthawk seemed to work flawlessly, like a well-oiled engine in pristine condition. The crew kept the freshly appointed Captain informed of anything and everything that was going on, and in turn, the Captain tried to salvage what he could from the situation.

“Keep tracking Bleu! I want to know exactly where Kordath is on that ship!”

“Yes, sir!” The officer acknowledged almost before Rulvak could finish the statement.

“Get Atyiru or Arcia on the comms, let them know the situation! We need them to know what’s going on here so we can get reinforcements!”

“Right away, sir!” The communications officer was already putting the frequencies in for the long range communications with the Consul and Proconsul.

Before Rulvak issued any more commands, he turned to Zakath. Assuming that the update the Barabel brought would be about Nath wanting to go after her apprentice.

“She will not be chasing Bleu.” Rulvak stated blankly before Zakath could even say anything.

“She knowz not to do that, but she needz a releaze, Captain, and you should not stand in the way of that. Let her take the shuttle over to the other vezzel, and take out her fruztrationz.”

“We will still need interrogations, Zakath. You know this as well as I do.”

“Yez, Captain, but there will be some pirates set azide for that. Bezidez, the Talonz will be killing some az well. Honeztly, it will happen with or without your authority.”

Rulvak knew this was indeed necessary for Nath, and was accustomed to the unorthodox ways of doing things by now. He just hadn’t acclimated to being the deciding authority yet.

“Very well, Zakath. She is to wait until I give her the go ahead, but keep this between us for now.”

“Wize choice, Captain.”

Then Rulvak realized that Nath was staring at him. Her gaze like a dagger. She definitely needs this. He thought to himself. Rulvak turned to address the whole crew, but more directly, Nath.

“Very well, let’s begin.” As the signal was being sent he quickly followed up with a second command. “Target the ship that is holding Bleu.”

“But Cap-” The officer began before being abruptly interrupted.

“I will have no tolerance for disobeying a command. The Talons need a distraction, so we will give them one. I do not plan to have us engage, but they will see our lock. Now target that damn ship!”

“Yes, Captain!” The officer replied without hesitation this time.

“Our shields are still up, and we are ready just in case, Sir,” a second officer chimed in, reading Rulvak’s mind.

“Very good.” Rulvak turned his focus to the video feed from the Talons as they blew the charges. One by one, the tiny flashes signaled the beginning of the Ryn’s rescue. The Talons entered the breach. After just a few seconds they had gone from outside the hull to inside the bridge. With that information, the Captain looked up at Zakath.

“Now.” Rul said with a slight nod, confirming the go ahead for Nath before looking back down to follow the Talons’ progress.


“What in the name of Kad Ha’rangir is that?” Exclaimed the Helmsman, scanning the animal with his faded crimson eyes.

Nath smiled as she summoned the beast closer, it couldn’t have been fully grown, it was smaller than Mirdala, but seemed to gaze at Kalon with hungry eyes.

“It’s a Vornskr, I picked him up a few months back and never got around to finishing the experiment.” She gave the creature’s head a pat and as it turned Kalon could see the tail was missing, a small stump was all that remained.

“Let me guess, the lack of a tail makes it easier to control?” He asked, watching Nath and the animal curiously.

“I was aiming for its head but it moved. After that it followed me and later I found a link with it.” Nath stood at ease with the animal, she seemed to feel no threat from it. The Vornskr sat fixating on Kalon, it seemed to be waiting on instruction of some description.

“And you’re planning on taking that with you? Is it even suitable for the type of combat you and I are expecting?” Kalon was understandably cautious with the animal, but it was just in his nature to be hesitant until it sufficiently earned his trust.

“It’ll survive if that is what you are curious of.” Replied the Iridonian. As the pair spoke it approached the Mandalorian and began to sniff his hand, though Kalon swatted it back before too long. It moved surprisingly quickly, only allowing a glancing blow yet showing no signs of aggression for the slight on its hide.

“I need to grab my armour and that old walking pelt of mine.” Said the Raider, spinning on his back foot as he tried to get his bearings on where he was on the ship. “I’ll meet you by the elevator in five.”

He glanced over his shoulder as he watched Nath disappear into her own room, her pet not far behind her. The Mandalorian knew she had heard him even if she had not responded.

Kalon traced through the corridors of the ship towards his own quarters with considerable speed, barely stopping to enter the code at the door before entering the small cabin. Sitting on his bed and fast asleep was Mirdala, his Cythraul. She opened one eye curiously as the Mandalorian entered.

“Don’t get up, lazy mutt.” Mumbled Kalon as he threw off his coat and utility belt, racing for his armour that was propped up on a mannequin in the far corner of the room. As he changed into his armour the Raider noticed Mirdala begrudgingly get up, knowing too well that her services would be required.

When he was finished he placed his helmet on, hitting it with the butt of his Beskad to ensure the fit was correct before sheathing the blade onto his belt. He picked up his carbine rifle, resting it on his shoulder as he made his way towards the door. The Mandalorian gestured at Mirdala to follow now that he was fully equipped. The Cythraul’s crimson eyes stared at her master as she fell into step behind him, swiftly leaving the cabin behind them.

It wasn’t long before Kalon had successfully retraced his steps back to the elevator, where Nath stood waiting, the Vornskr sat besides her in a way that made the Mandalorian strangely uncomfortable. He could sense Mirdala’s skepticism as they stopped in front of the couple, and patted her on the head to calm the patient canine. Kalon also noticed the hound become suddenly irritated with his companion’s presence but it was hushed without word or gesture by the Iridonian before it could take any action. Nath greeted Mirdala with a pat on the head, something the Cythraul tolerated but did not enjoy.

“So you named it?” Asked Kalon as he entered into the turbolift once it had arrived, Mirdala standing in between himself and Nath, no doubt a subtle gesture of protection for her master.

“No.” Replied Nath, having not given it that much thought. Her pet sat by her side once again, and this time Kalon noticed the sizeable yet old clawing scars across its hide.

The Mandalorian smirked ever so slightly, although it was hidden under the cold reception of his visor. He elected not to continue the conversation as they descended towards the hanger. After all, they had a job to do, and silently he was too busy remembering the panel layout for flying the shuttle.



“Wize choice, Captain.” Zakath hissed as he turned to return to his assigned post at the Nighthawk’s tactical computer, its board already lit up with data being fed in from the sensors that were currently painting a target lock on the ship that now carried their former Captain. Adjusting his headset, he opened a direct communications link to Mako.

“Commandant.” The Barabel growled as the comm link opened.

“What is it, Zakath?” The speaker attached to his ear erupted with the sound of blaster fire as Mako replied with a slight trace of annoyance. “We just breached the outer perimeter and are forcing our way in. Don’t have time to chat.”

“Underztood.” Zakath replied, his tail twitching in acknowledgement. “Be advized that Nath and Kalon will be joining you to conduct interrogation on site.”

“The hell? When did that get into the plan?”

“When she decided she needed to vent her fruztrationz.” Zakath replied flatly. “ETA iz five to ten minutez. Be prepared.”

“Ugh. Roger that.” The comm went dead as the disgusted Commandant cut the link.

The Barabel merely smirked to himself as he adjusted the headset to connect to the hangar bay control room.

“This is the hangar bay. What is it, sir?” The control officer’s voice came over crisp and calm.

“Thiz iz Zakath. Be advized that Nath Voth and Kalon are enroute to the bay to take a shuttle. They have authorization to proceed.” Zakath said as he tapped at the tactical computer, bringing up the Talons’ camera feeds onto his personal monitor. “Prepare the shuttle at once, Nath will be there within a few minutez.”


Zakath cut the link and looked at the new Captain, waiting patiently. He did not not have to wait long.

“Now.” Rulvak nodded slightly to Zakath, who gave a slight nod in return before opening up the communication link to Nath’s personal communicator.

“What is it, Zakath?” Nath’s voice was cold and impassive.

“Are you almozt to the hangar?” Zakath asked bluntly.

“…yes.” Nath replied after a brief pause. “Do I have permission?”

“Yez. A shuttle is being prepared now.” The Barabel paused for a brief second. “Enjoy yourself.”

“…I will.” Nath’s voice was icy before the link cut.

Zakath smiled to himself again as he returned his attention to the Talons’ feeds, noting that they had made substantial progress in the two minutes he was distracted with the conversations.

“Captain!” The communications officer looked up from his console to look at Rulvak. “The lead ship is hailing us.”

“Very well.” Rulvak’s voice remained calm even as it grew icier. “Open the channel.”

“Yes sir!” The communications officer replied as he turned back to his console, and within seconds, the main bridge viewer shimmered and shifted to a view of Dassac, the Chistori’s red eyes narrowed with displeasure. The Barabel’s glowing eyes focused on Dassac as the Sith began to speak.

“We have Bleu in our hands, and you are allowed to leave.” Dassac said, his formerly gleeful voice now icy cold. “So why are you foolish enough to target my ship?”


Once the link had been cut from Zakath, she decided to send a small note to the terminal she knew he occupied.

‘Keep my comm open to incoming messages from them.’

She didn’t need to say please or thank you; he knew the stakes and what losing would mean. It didn’t take long for her comm to reactivate when a new transmission came through.

By then, Kalon and herself were already boarding the shuttle. The hounds took their places, unwilling to part from their Masters. Nath took up the vacant copilot seat and buckled herself in.

“We’ll need to be quick.” Kalon turned to observe Nath for a moment as she typed out a command quickly on her datapad. Before long, he could hear the ongoing transmission. His expression was masked by the helm but he inclined his head to acknowledge.

It did not take the Mandalorian long to refamiliarise himself with the workings of the shuttle - deftly, he began the take off patching his own internal comm to coordinate with the staff in the dock.

As Kalon did this, Nath turned her attention to connecting with Mako’s comm frequency. To begin with, all she could hear was battle and gunfire, which she savoured like a fine bottle of Tihaar.

“Yes?“ Came Mako’s terse response after a moment.

“All of high command is to be kept alive,” The statement she made gave no room for argument.

“I’ll do my best, they’re putting up quite a fight.” Another burst of gunfire rattled over the communication. She waited for it to subside somewhat before continuing.

“The rest are expendable. ETA is five minutes.” Without hesitation, she cut the comm and rested back as the shuttle began to move. The journey was remarkably silent, not that either party seemed to mind, comfortable to remain as such and concentrate on other matters at hand.

Kalon’s attention drifted from the console to the Corvette that Kordath was taking temporary residency. It seemed to remain stationary for now, but he was uncertain for how long that would remain to be the case. Nath glanced down to the pair at their sides, curious at the lack of sound - she couldn’t help but roll her eyes at them. Her Vornskr had bent to Mirdala’s will it seemed, having rolled on his back in submission. She didn’t seem all that impressed, giving a slight sniff of his abdomen before nipping. Her pet gave a sight growl, at best it was half hearted.

She had to name the damned thing, he noted her fixated gaze on him and rolled back onto his paws to come closer. Without hesitation, he hopped onto her lap. Nath moved quickly to avoid damaging the datapad.

“Koth will suit you.” The name came easily to her mind when she looked at him. Kalon glanced her way and grimaced under the helm, not overly fond of where the mutt had decided to sit.

Noting how close they were now, Nath clicked her fingers and Koth immediately leapt back down he circled the cockpit sensing it was almost time. Mirdala had much more control of herself, keeping to her Master’s side.

“What does the name mean?” Kalon asked after another moments silence. Nath’s eyes closed for a second, trying to grasp the words in his language.

“…Fire Guardian.” She checked her equipment one last time as the ship began to dock in the hangar before standing, tucking the datapad into the wide leather belt around her middle. There was no doubt armed forces would be waiting for them.


Corvette Hull

The Talons and company waited for what seemed like hours for the signal to come. In reality they were only waiting a few minutes, but each second seemed to drag by from their perspective. Finally the burst of static came across the Nighthawk’s channel and the Talons burst into a frenzy of motion. Uji found himself getting tugged backward by Lilly while the other Talons and Mako tucked themselves away into whatever crevice they could find. Another few agonizing seconds passed before the Talon comm chanel crackled and Mako’s voice came through.

“Blow it,” the command was simple, straightforward, and laced with murderous venom. They all knew what would happen inside a ship when a hull breach occurred. Uji looked over to where he had seen Mako disappear to. The Aedile had almost forgotten how the Commandant became in combat. All those pent up emotions flowing forth into a single bright point of intent, this would be Uji’s first time seeing it up close and in person. The sudden shuddering of the corvette brought the Aedile back to the present as the charges detonated, cutting a one meter wide circle through the ship’s hull. The large hull piece floating away confirmed the breach, yet the Talons stayed in place.

Mako glanced over at Lilly as she kept Uji safely away from the hole. Emerald orbs turning back to the breach, the Battlemaster waited for the show to begin. The Human would not be disappointed as the white wisps of freezing moisture began to appear, within a second a crew member came jetting out of the ship. Unable to breath the man clawed at his throat as his blood began to cold boil and evaporate in his veins. Turning his eyes away from the dead man, Mako keyed the Talon comm to Transmit and began to count down.

“5,” the team members checked their weapons.
“4,” they disengaged the magnetic hold to the hull.
“3,” Mako took his Lightsaber into hand.
“2,” muscles tensed, and breathing quickened.
“1,” breathing stopped and time seemed to slip away.

The Talons shot forward, maneuvering jets assisting them into the ship. Mako slipped in behind them immediately plunging his lightsaber’s white blade into the closed door to the bridge. Lilly and Uji entered the ship last, a Talon already waiting with hull sealing kit. Three of the Talons went to work putting the temporary patch into place between the inner and outer hulls.

“Get that seal into place NOW! Line up for tactical entry,” Mako ordered as he withdrew his lightsaber from the bridge door. With a kick the door fell into several pieces and the Talons rushed into the bridge. Mako followed behind the sound of blaster fire filled his ears and sent chills down his spine. He lived for these moments, then it was suddenly over. Irritated that his fun had come to a temporary stop the Commandant quickly counted the bodies of the bridge crew.

“There are not enough, they must have switched command to a secondary bridge. Lilly, kindly download their intel while we are here and someone find me the location of the secondary bridge!”

“The patch worked, Sir, life support systems reporting normal livable conditions on board again.”

“Switch to filtered air intake, when Lilly finishes trash the controls,” the former Krath spoke to his men as he removed his helmet and secured it to his pack.

Several minutes passed before Lilly had finished her task. The young Fade’s helmet had also found it’s way onto her pack. Her blue eyes looking to Mako, the Mandalorian smiled.

“All done here, secondary bridge is a deck down and midway aft.”

“Let’s move out.”

One Deck Down

The Talons were holding their own at the entrance to the second bridge, with what seemed like the entire onboard population. The movement to their current location had been dull and uneventful with nothing turning up from the room to room sweep and clear.

“The rest are expendable. ETA is five minutes.” Nath’s voice came across the Talon channel. Looking at Uji, a wicked smile crossed Mako’s lips. The Aedile blinked as Henymory’s seemingly permanent and emotionless expression melted away. What remained seemed the look of depraved bloodlust, indeed the man’s very presence in the Force seemed to shift ever so slightly.

“You heard the lady. Boys, the way I figure it all of high-command is going to be on that battle bridge,” the Commandant paused as he stepped into the middle of the corridor, his lightsaber swatting away blaster blots as one would swat an annoying bug. A few of the Talons chuckled, as their aim shifted from immobilizing shots to legs and arms to kill shots.

Kill them all,” Mako’s voice had dropped in tone, his normal speech pattern had shifted and became filled with bloodlust. Raising a hand the Battlemaster sent streams of electricity down the confined space before darting forward. The Talons fired as the moved forward following Lilly’s lead, bodies dropping in their wake. Uji mentally compared the Talons to a well oiled death machine before launching himself into the fray beside the Commandant. Minutes passed as the group did the work of reapers. Then all was silent as they found themselves at the sealed door to the battle bridge.

“Get the charges prepped and set, we breach in five,” the former Krath ordered. The Talons setting to work and checking over their gear.

“I wondered how long it would take the two of you,” Mako spoke with a smile as he looked back toward the sound of canine claws on the durasteel floor.


“Not what I would have called it.” Admitted Kalon, turning his head to glance at Nath’s new pet.

As the shuttle made its way into the docking bay the Mandalorian spotted several figures waiting for them. If they had attempted to fire on the shuttle in any way he could not tell, the armour plating too thick for hand held weapons.

Flicking a switch, Kalon began to lower the ramp out the back of the vehicle, gesturing for the Iridonian to stand as he did so.

“You go out there and deal with them.” He said, glancing out around the hangar bay and then back at his controls. “I’ll find somewhere to park.”

Glancing at him in a sarcastic manner, the Iridonian obliged him and sprinted towards the ramp. She lept off and onto the hard deck of the hangar below, lightsaber activated and her pet not far behind her.

Leaving Nath to initiate combat with those unlucky enough tasked with defending the hangar, Kalon landed the shuttle in the only available space. He powered down the vehicle and parted with the controls, his hand going to his beskad and his blaster rifle.

Upon exiting the shuttle he noticed Nath had already dealt with several members of the opposition. Not wanting to miss out on the fun, he sped down the ramp and towards the closest crewmember, who turned to meet the new threat.

Not even giving the man much time to react, the Mandalorian sunk his beskad into his chest. He pulled out the blade and kicked the body to the floor, watching as Mirdala tore out his throat for good measure before moving on.

As he closed the gap towards another crewmember, Kalon fired off several bolts from his rifle. One hit an opponent in the leg and he fell to the floor with a shriek. Glancing over, he could see Nath decapitate another of the crew with her saber, turning to block a swing from a vibrosword.

“They aren’t as strong as I expected them to be.” Admitted the Mandalorian, dropping to his knee and silencing the fallen crewmate with a blade in the throat.

“These guys are just fodder, the real prizes are further in the ship.” Replied the Iridonian, using her force abilities to push her attacker back into a pile of crates with such aggression that a few sickening cracks could be heard upon impact.

The duo met up once all of the opposition had been dealt with. Whilst Kalon wiped the blood from his blade onto the uniform of one of the deceased crew, Nath gazed around the hangar and towards the two doorways that let down into the bowels of the ship.

“Are you planning on meeting up with Mako?” Asked Kalon, glancing back to the shuttle. “I only ask because I might stay with the shuttle.”

Nath looked at him puzzled for a brief second before nodding her head in understanding. She knew about Kalon’s paranoia with boarding actions ever since he told her about his experience on Caluula Station during the Yuuzhan Vong War. Since then, he had always made sure they had an escape route clear just in case things turned sour like they usually did.


The security forces were too easy.

There was a certain intimacy that Nath enjoyed when taking life. One did not receive it when deflecting energy bolts, once they had fallen she clipped the lightsaber back to her belt with an irritated sigh.

Black eyes took on the vast space but they quickly came to the turbolift, she took it without hesitation, tapped into the Talon’s comm channel she could still hear them through the earpiece and knew exactly where to go.

As direct as it was, she knew she most likely wouldn’t encounter too much resistance. This hypothesis was proven incorrect, however, when she arrived on the correct level. The metal doors swung open and a blaster bolt shot past her ear singing to her as it hissed into the back panel of the confined space.

The lack of movement on the Iridonian’s part made the sniper hesitate. She could practically hear his heart rate increase but he had not seen Koth as he slipped out of the lift. Tunnel vision having obscured his passage as his Master proved an ideal distraction, they were close, he could feel the presence of food close by. The Human did not last long, not even managing a scream as the beast tore out his throat. The gurgling hiss of air and blood splattering was the only noise to be heard.

“I see Mistress has a new pet.” The voice seemed to come from nowhere, but there was no threat, Nath knew this man well, Koth hesitated sensing they were acquainted.
“I see you’ve been busy Xenem.” She stepped out of the lift and turned to face the shorter Falleen.

“On your orders.”

“I said investigate, not infiltrate and go dead on me for months at a time.” Pitch eyes bore into distinct cybernetic ones, her way of asserting dominance once more over her Fade, he quickly looked down.

“My apologies, they were rather secretive, I believed this to be the most expedient course.” She clicked her tongue, disapproval easy to read but no punishment was really there to be had.

“It was fruitful I hope.”

“Yes, I am nothing if not efficient.” Nath tried her best not to roll her eyes, it was a hard pressed battle. She stepped past Xenem and began to walk down the corridor.

“Where are you going?” He was curious, she never really went anywhere without a goal in mind.

“I have interrogations to conduct.” He gave an acquiescing nod of his head and followed a step behind.

By the time the pair reached the Talon’s Nath’s skin was crismon, the Beskad at the small of her back had been well used.

“I wondered how long it would take the two of you,” Mako spoke with a smile as he looked back toward the sound of canine claws on the durasteel floor but it was a short lived smile when he saw the Falleen instead of Kalon.

Nath could feel the change in all of them but stronger from Mako, like a blood rage, his weapon ready for an attack that never came. She licked at her crimson lips as she stepped in close invading the Human’s personal space.

“Problem?” She asked, whispering the question in his ear. He didn’t back away from her, his eyes only reminding her of her Master more and more. The smirk on his face only widened.

“No problem, join us.” The Iridonian’s reaction was to lick at his cheek in reply, Mako knew Nath wasn’t there any more, his eyes inspecting her behaviour, normally distant, reserved, and controlled. He could feel it too, something inside her changed, but he didn’t care enough to comment.

Lilly tensed, almost stepping forward to yank the Iridonian away. She noticed, her black gaze drifting over to watch, keeping herself close just to irritate Lilly even more. Uji tensed, sensing the rising animosity between the two female’s but unwilling to intervene unless needed.

“She’s cute, I could eat her.” Nath, or at least it looked like Nath, kept her face too close to Mako’s skin to be seen, far too paranoid to allow something as simple as lip reading to let herself be heard.

Mako barely responded, not that the Iridonian cared, she was enjoying his blood rage far too much to give a damn about much else, she could feel it just under his skin, like it was a part of his essence. As quickly as she came she parted ways with Mako, allowing her response to be a simple nod of agreement.

“Xenem, set up position, no killing the higher ups. Same to you too.” Koth had followed her. He sat close to them, watching the pair but mainly the Force Users with hungry eyes like he was starving, even though he seemed well fed.

Mako watched her step away readying to breach the entrance, the Falleen pressed a key card into his fingers.

“It’ll open the doors.” He stated in a matter of fact tone. The Falleen didn’t wait for a response stepping away to obey Nath’s instructions only to have the card tossed back at him. Xenem didn’t pick it up again allowing it to remain on the floor as his hand went to his secondary pistol instead of the Sniper rifle at his back, he quickly took his post and awaited the Talons to begin.


Bridge of the Nighthawk
Several minutes after the breach

“So why are you foolish enough to target my ship?” With his narrowed eyes glaring at the Sephi, trying to understand his motives, he continued. “If you think this will help your precious Ryn, my prize, you are gravely mistaken. I suggest you turn tail and run before you no longer have that choice, and come to regret this decision.”

The Captain of the Nighthawk looked back at the enemy, knowing that he was at a disadvantage this time. He clearly had little experience being a Captain, only just being appointed right before his former was taken captive. Before this, he was only the Commander, following Bleu, Mako, and Zakath around in hopes of learning more. He had learned much, but none of that could help him now. Rulvak would have to rely on faith in his battleteam, house, and clan. For better or for worse, he would use that now, and hope that his team could stall long enough for their reinforcements to arrive.

“I believe it is you who is mistaken. You think we are craven? You think you have won simply because of obtaining a single member of our crew? I caution you to not take this situation lightly. You underestimate who you have come to face.” Rulvak spoke confidently as he assured himself that the help would be here any moment now.

The man shifted his piercing gaze around the bridge, judging the crew and attempting to gather information on any ulterior motives at hand that may be disguised by the targeting. “You have chosen poorly by targeting me, and responding to my mercy in such a way, Captain, and you will reap what you have sown.” With that, the viewer faded out as the connection was severed.

“Captain, thiz may not have been the right courze of action. Shouldn’t we have-”

“Save it Zakath.” Rulvak’s heart still pounded from the conversation with Dassac. “This is no time for criticism. I have distracted him, and blinded him with anger. How is Mako progressing?” The thought of getting into a dogfight against the pirates’ Corvette was not an ideal one. He looked down at the monitor, hoping to see that Mako’s team was successful in at least disabling the second one.

“They have succezzfully dizabled the firzt bridge, and are moving to the second. Alzo-” the barabel leaned in to whisper, “Nath and Kalon have boarded and begun to move towardz the Talonz.” Zakath straightened back up, as he continued to monitor the progress of Mako and the Talons.

“Start manuevering us behind the breached Corvette!” Rulvak ordered swiftly. Knowing they would have to avoid any direct fire from the other ship, he wanted to put one between the Nighthawk and the other.

“Aye aye, Cap’n!” The helmsman replied.

“Zakath, have Mako get the shields up on that ship as quickly as possible. We wouldn’t want our new friend blasting his way through our allies aboard that ship to get to us.”

“Yez, Captain.”

Rulvak turned once again to the communications officer. “Tell me you send word to the Arconan summit.”

“Affirmative, sir.”


“Atyiru had left without responding.”

“What of Arcia?”

“Arcia said, and I quote, “If my apprentice gets one damn scratch on my ship, he’s going out the airlock.””

“Well, that’s reassuring.”


Corvette, Battle Bridge entrance

The Talon’s quickly checked the charges as they planted them on the four corners of the door and one large one in the center. These were special shaped explosive charges that would direct the majority of the explosion toward the door and then into the battle bridge. While they would effectively blast the door open creating an entrance, they would also cause an over pressure to form on the other side of the door. The overpressure would temporarily overwhelm and effectively disable any who become caught in it. This would allow the Talons to take the battle bridge with minimal resistance.

The com link in Mako’s ear crackled to life and the Barbel’s voice came through.

“Mako, the Captain wantz you to raize the shieldz”

“We will be taking the battle bridge momentarily, please inform the Captain that it will be done,” the information received and acknowledged, Mako terminated the connection, even though the communication was encrypted and secured, there could still be ways for the enemy to listen in on the broadcast.

The Commandant waited, the bloodlust of battle barely contained within him. A thumbs up came from the Talon member at the door, and with a nod, Mako stepped back into an alcove in the corridor’s wall.

“Talons, line up, take cover,” the Commandant paused as the Talons took their positions. Glancing over at Nath and her Fade, satisfied that they were behind cover, the Battlemaster allowed a murderous smile to cross his lips.

“BREACH, BREACH, BREACH!” A deafening roar resounded as the former Archpriest finished the last syllable. Those in the corridor could feel the sound waves forcefully pass though their bodies, causing the need to catch their collective breath. Inside the battle bridge it was much worse, most of the crew was rendered unconscious in a single instant. Those still having command of their faculties were barely able to move, much less hear the metallic clinks as the Talons tossed flash bang grenades into the target room.

In the corridor, Mako rushed forward seconds after the last flash bang detonated, the Talons already pouring into the battle bridge. Nath and her Fade followed behind, the unrelenting and overpowering yet precise violence of action the Talons had delivered so quickly bestilling a weird form of respect in the Interrogator.

“Get those shields up, someone call Kalon down here incase we need to drive this pile of excrement. If they do not have officer emblems or were at an intelligence position they do not continue to breathe. If they qualify to stay alive, drag them over to Nath for interrogation, make sure to give her the details on where they were found,” the Commandant’s commands came quickly as he twisted his lightsaber’s white blade into the heart of the former pilot.


Kalon was sat down on the extended ramp of the shuttle, Mirdala by his side. He had removed his helmet and placed it besides him. One hand clutched around the grip of his carbine rifle resting on his lap whilst his other was holding a lit rashallo cigarra, the Mandalorian’s favourite.

Drawing the smoke up to his lips, he inhaled the fumes slowly. Even though he seemed quite relaxed, he was still on high alert, his eyes peering around the empty hangar constantly assessing for threats. He noticed his Cythraul companion doing the same, and it make him smirk for the briefest of moments.

It was then that the ship shook violently for what was only a moment, though it was enough for Kalon to cough out the cigarra’s fumes in surprise. He dropped the rolled up smoke, crushing it beneath his heel as he stood up, swiping up his helmet as he did so and reattaching it.

Turning towards Mirdala, he gestured for her to stay by the shuttle. “I want it kept nice and tidy when I get back.” He exclaimed, rolling his shoulder as he hoisted his carbine rifle and made his way towards the corridors, leaving his Cythraul behind.

Luckily, Kalon had done a bit of research on this type of Corvette during his studies and remembered where abouts the bridge was located. Though in all fairness, all he had to do was follow the dead bodies.

“Kalon, you’re needed on the battle bridge.” A voice crackled over his helmet’s comm system. It was a male voice that he recognised off the top of his head, therefore belonging to one of the members of Talon.

“Yeah, yeah. I’m already on my way.” Replied the Mandalorian, turning a corner.

As he made the turn he saw movement down a side corridor. Instinctively turning his head, he pointed the barrel of his weapon at the figure.

It was just a human member of the crew, not armed from what he could tell. He wasn’t really that old either, probably ten years younger than the Mandalorian. The crewmember raised his hands above his head.

“Probably trying to find a way to abandon ship.” Though Kalon, watching the cowardly crewmate silently. “I’ll be sure to tell Nath she missed one.”

“What are yo-” Began the human, though his words were cut short when the Mandalorian squeezed the trigger of his rifle, sending bolts of blaster energy hurtling at the unlucky man. Kalon watched with satisfaction as his prisoner let out a cry and dropped to the ground, unmoving.

He continued on his way, quickly getting to the battle bridge. Upon entering he noticed Nath with several prisoners in the corner whilst Talons were busy identifying and executing survivors.

“Kalon…” Said Mako, turning to face him as he arrived.

“Shh, no talking.” Interrupted the Mandalorian, heading straight for the pilot’s chair. He knew why he had been summoned, there was no other logical explanation.

Ignoring Mako’s stunned moment of silence, he pulled the body of the pilot out of the chair throwing it to the floor as he sat down, accustoming himself to the controls.


Perdition Corvette

When Kordath had exited the escape pod he’d found many a blaster muzzle pressed in his face and hands searching his body. He made the obligatory jokes about getting fresh on the first date and had been struck across the face with the stock of a blaster rifle for his troubles.

After the usual courtesy of a search and minor beating, something the Ryn more or less shrugged off after years of dealing with customs agents across the Outer Rim, they began the walk. Bleu was mostly bored for this part, he’d found himself captured, tortured, interrogated and inconvenienced enough times now that he found this to be one of the more enjoyable parts. At least nobody was cutting on him or trying to use the Force to screw with his head. Yet.

Conflicting sensations flittered about on the edge of his senses.

He could at this distance, being familiar enough with his–Rulvak’s crew, sense several of them.

Mako was a cold focus with a rising bloodlust behind it, ready to unleash violence as soon as he was able.

Zakath was a mixture of vague annoyance, amusement, and concern, though Kord suspected that wasn’t for him.

And he could feel his Master like a bright light at the edge of his mind. He’d done well to avoid her before getting into that escape pod, she’d have made sure he didn’t leave the Nighthawk. A fury was rising in her, hopefully Rulvak and Zakath could direct her well enough before things went bad again.

Closer by was a ball of anger and another of quiet, cold calculation and anticipation. They were getting closer, and the Ryn took a deep breath as his escort stopped before a door. It slid open and allowed Kordath to smell the dry air wafting out, Dassac having made the chambers more suitable for his physiology. Not waiting for his guards to shove him through, probably causing him to sprawl on the floor, the Arconan stepped through.

“Leave us,” came the rasping voice of the Chistori as the security troopers started to move to reign in Bleu. Kordath straightened his uniform a bit as he stood and waited, not bothering to look to closely about the darkened room.

“Theatrics, for me, Dassac? Guess I oughta be flattered, eh?” he said in an offhand manner.

Kordath regretted this almost immediately as brilliant lights activated all around him. Blinking back the blots in his image he almost didn’t see the red skinned woman coming at him. Instinct said to defend himself, experience told him to wait and see what the Zeltron would do. When her crimson forehead impacted with his nose, he was less than surprised. What did come as a shock was the chair he fell into, overstuffed and incredibly comfortable. Blood leaking from his nose, possibly broken now, Kordath squinted through the glare at the woman.

“Well, you’re nicer than yer sister was, luv. She tried to give me tail a piercing and take one of me arms. Don’t think the big fella,” he paused to nod towards the presence of Dassac, “is gonna let ya one up her on that count today. But thanks for playin’, yer as easy to look at as she was at least.”

The Zeltron, Trilcha was her name he thought, her eyes grew wide. Light reflected off her golden sight in a manner that seemed to make them glow as she reached for the Ryn again. From the corner Dassac cleared his throat loudly, causing her to pause.

“Captain Bleu is our guest, Trilcha, please treat him with more respect than that,” spoke the Chistori as he stepped into the light. Kordath did his best to keep a straight face even as he felt tendrils of the Force tickling at the back of his mind. “You’re more resilient than last time, Kordath, getting into that head of yours will take longer I suppose. A shame, that will mean more pain for you, unless you feel like answering my questions.”

“Oh I’ll answer questions all day long, mate, what did ya want ta know?”

“Hmm, still as flippant as ever I see. Let’s start with the one closest to my heart after recent events,” stated Dassac, pacing to and fro before the Ryn. He stopped, turning to lean his toothy smile and red eyes close to Bleu’s face, “Where is Tameike? Where is the man who lead the counter offensive against my forces? Cost the lives of oh so many of my men?””

“Uji? Oh yeah, he’s a mate he is. Good man, that fellow, aye.”

“He’s stalling,” hissed the Zeltron.

“Indeed. But whatever would he be stalling for? Last time we were in this situation, Kordath, you had not the resources you do now. Everyone assumed you dead. Because they left you to die.”

The Ryn felt the questing tendrils of Force energy lunge at his mind as Dassac finished speaking, likely the Chistori hoped memories of nearly dying in Estle City a year prior would weaken his resolve. A slight hiss, of amusement or frustration Bleu couldn’t tell signaled the failure of this attempt.

“Much more resilient indeed, how nice. I would hate for you to be so weak willed that I was able to break you already, I expect more from those who swear themselves to me.”

“I miss something, big guy? Don’t recall ever signin’ on for that job.”

“Oh but you do recall the offer, do you not?”

Kordath clenched his jaw, refusing to speak even as the the attempted invasion of his mind continued. At some point Trilcha had begun to walk about as her Master conversed with Bleu, and the Ryn felt her presence behind him. Tensing up, uncertain of how he would survive any kind of an attempt on his life in these small quarters with two Force users of greater, in Dassac’s case immensely, ability and strength. Instead slim fingered, red skinned hands came down lightly on his shoulders and gently massaged them.

“I believe he remembers, Master. Few forget an offer such as that,” she spoke from above him, her tone calmer and voice richer than it was when she was trying to headbutt him to death moments before.

“I know what yer doin’ lass,” he growled at the Zeltron. Bleu was more than a bit familiar with the natural empath abilities of her race, the ability to manipulate a person’s emotions. Their ability to emit pheromones made them even more dangerous, in Kordath’s opinion, especially when working with a Force adept on the level of the Chistori before him. The Ryn tried to slow his breathing as he focused on the red eyed gaze before him.

“Perhaps we will have to start once more with pain,” sighed the large Sith.

“Oi, yeah, that worked out well last time.” The Ryn’s sarcasm earned him a painful pinch on the nerves of his shoulders, causing him to go stiff. Another assault was made on his mental defenses at nearly the same moment, causing his head to hurt as well.

“You will give up Tameike, Kordath, and then you will join us in our crusade. You know this already, you’ve surely seen it with your gifted sight. Oh yes, I know how well you view coming events, how you always seem to avoid the worst of things. Amusing that our…connection, has lead to a blind spot where I’m concerned.”

“We’ve got no connection,” snarled the Ryn, fighting the sensations of claws scrabbling at the edges of his mind.

“Oh? You knew I was still in the system, you knew who was hailing your ship before you answered. We are connected, you and I. You will–” the Chistori was interrupted as a comm tone played.

”My Lord, the enemy ship has painted us with their targeting sensors, should we open fire? What are your orders?”

“Your orders are to wait for me on the bridge, Captain,” growled Dassac in annoyance. He turned to look at the Ryn who simply shrugged, sagging into the comfy seat as the mental assault abated. “Trilcha, keep him company. Make him feel welcomed, after all, he is to be your partner in the oncoming operation.”

“Of course, Master,” came the rich voice once more, causing Bleu to shiver. “I’m sorry about the nose, Kordy, I have to remind myself that it wasn’t you who killed Tysha. I lost my temper, do you forgive me?”

Kordath sighed and closed his eyes, hoping that Rulvak and company somehow blew up the corvette before life got stranger.


Zakath’s talons were digging into the edges of his terminal as he stared down at the screen, his eyes glowing like hot amethyst coals. He had followed Nath’s progress aboard the enemy Corvette alongside the Talons, and it was not long before he sensed a tremor in the Force. The last time he felt it was where Nath stood before him… and was someone else entirely.

He did not like that one bit.

The Barabel let a small growl escape, which everyone around him ignored, used to the quirks of the Nighthawk’s Security Chief.

If something goes sideways on that Corvette, now would be the right time for it. Curse that blasted spirit. Zakath raged viciously inside himself as his eyes stayed fixated on the screen, which showed the Talons taking up positions on the battle bridge.

But before Zakath could continue his internal rant, a quiet beeping sounded on his terminal, and his attention was diverted to one of the tactical sensors. His eyes narrowed as he read the data flowing in from the sensors, and then cursed inwardly before looking up to see Rulvak barking orders as the Nighthawk maneuvered to take up position behind the captured Corvette.

“Captain.” Zakath growled out as he risked another glance at the terminal screen before returning to look at the new Captain. “We have a problem.”

“What is it now?” Rulvak demanded, walking over to Zakath’s station.

“Thiz,” The Barabel pointed down at the terminal screen where several dots were beeping. “Shipz are emerging from the azteriod field… and they are not ourz.”

“Sh- alright.” Rulvak let a small hiss escape his lips as he thought quickly. “Alright, alert Mako and the Talons, see if they can get that Corvette somewhat combat-capable and ready to fire.”

“Yez, Captain.” Zakath was already on the comm.

Rulvak whirled around and laid his eyes on the comm officer.

“You! Any word yet from Selen on our reinforcements?”

“Not yet, sir!”


Nighthawk Bridge

“Blast it,” spoke the Captain under his breath, looking at the tactical display showing Dassac’s corvette opposite of the one the Nighthawk herself was now using for cover. Multiple markers were popping, denoting squadrons of fighters coming out of the asteroid field behind the enemy corvette. A new pair of markers popped up on the display, causing Rulvak to tap a few keys and zoom in.

“I need contact with the Commandant, and I need it now. They’ve got assault craft incoming. It seems they intend to retake their ship.”

“Roger sir, relaying intel now.”

“Sir, what do we intend to do? The fighterz are many, and the Nighthawk will be able to destroy some, but not all,” spoke the Barabel from the tactical console.

“Prepare for defensive action. We need to recover our people from the enemy vessel before we make a withdraw. Buy them time, eliminate fighters as they come into range and continue to use the captured ship as a shield.”

“Yez, Sir.”

Captured Corvette

“Well the good news is, I got the shields back online,” spoke up the Mandalorian.

“The bad?” asked Mako, leaning over the back of the helmsman’s seat.

“Oh, about three fighter squadrons inbound so far, multiple contacts showing up to screen the enemy ship as well.”

“Well, best get the guns back online as well, then.”

“I’m frakking working on it, aren’t I?”

“Sir!” shouted one of the Talons, “Enemy has assault craft inbound as well!”

“Fantastic,” spoke the Commandant, a hungry look coming to his face. “Prepare to repel boarders—” he began to say.

“No.” This from the Aedile who had been standing by, watching the tactical display and glancing at the prisoners under Nath’s care. They’d been loud at first, quieter now. “Nath. Do you have what you need from those men?”

The Iridonian gave him a glare, causing the Aedile to sigh. “Yes or no, Miss Voth?”

“There is little else to learn from the officers. We may obtain more back on board the ship, though I doubt it.”

“Good. Mako, have your men take them out into the corridor and dispatch them. We’ll need to move quick and prisoners will slow us down.”

“Excuse me? My men don’t take orders from you, Tameike,” stated the Commandant, his Fade standing behind him in support.

“Really, Mako? I seem to remember I was the one who signed their enlistment aboard the Nighthawk. I seem to remember I was the one who signed your enlistment back aboard the ‘Hawk.” The Aedile closed the distance to the Commandant, coming eye to eye with the man and ignoring the Fade who attempted to step between them.

“For the time being, I am the Aedile of Galeres, commander of her forces, and you had damn well remember that unless you and your companion would like to face a court martial.”

For a moment the two men stared one another down, a twitch showing on the Commandant’s face as he fought back anger and bloodlust to reach discipline. “Yes, Sir,” he stated through gritted teeth before sending off troopers.

The senior officer turned to their pilot. “Kalon…”

“Like I said, shields are up, guns ain’t. What are we gonna do? Mako was talking about setting it to ram the enemy ‘vette, could do some damage that way.”

“You think it’d get past the number of fighters coming in? No. Find the fastest way back to the shuttle and start leading people out. We need to get off this ship before they get too close. When they board it, we’ll blow it. We need to get back to the Nighthawk.”

“What about the Capt— I mean, Bleu?”

Uji sighed and glanced at the enemy corvette on the screen. “This isn’t a new thing for Kordath. He’ll get through it. One way or another.”

Perdition Corevette

“Your allies are quite insistent on getting themselves killed, Bleu.”

Kordath didn’t respond, staring at the wall and concentrating on keeping the claws scrabbling at his mind out. The Zeltron, Trilcha, had at some point pushed him over in the chair to do what an outside observer would call ‘cuddling.’ The Ryn was certain she’d done it just to make him more uncomfortable and to make her pheromones even more effective. Her nearness had started off as unsettling, and he was growing more concerned with it becoming more pleasant. Kordath could feel sweat beading across his brow and down his back as he sat limply in the chair. All of his energy was being spent on keeping the Chistori and Zeltron out of his head.

The clicking of talons on metal decking made him twitch as Dassac stepped into view. “They’ve cost me a ship, likely the crew as well. This is unfortunate. Do you know where I get so many followers? Likely you’d jibe now about pirates and mercenaries, if you weren’t so utterly focused.”

A dry chuckle came from the big Sith, and a giggle accompanied it from Trilcha, who’d moved a hand to stroking Kordath’s hair. He closed his eyes and dug deep to try and steel his resolve.

“Korriban,” the Chistori spoke, barely a whisper. “So many died on Korriban. One Sith, Brotherhood, the Jedi from New Tython. So many died, so many abandoned. So many needing a guiding hand — that is what we offered them, you see. Deserters, mutineers, the abandoned troops from a conflict that was nothing more than a fool’s errand for power by your former Grand Master. These are the men and women who crew my ships, who fight for me. Their goal is not the destruction of your Clan, but the liberation of it from the so-called Shadesworn you all follow.”

Kordath gritted his teeth. He remembered Korriban — all the wasted lives for one mad Sith’s ambition for eternal life. Many had left after that conflict. Soldiers had laid down arms and Force users had walked away. Dassac scooping up as many as he could, bringing them into his fold with promises of a better life, was easy enough for the Arconan to picture. The claws scrabbled on the edge of his mind still, trying to find a foothold.

A tone played, almost breaking the Ryn’s concentration.

“Ah, it seems the die has been cast, Little Ryn. Auxiliary forces have been deployed to deal with your ship and to retake our own. Do not worry, I intend to capture your vessel if possible. It would be such a waste to let those aboard die before learning the Truth.”

“Oh, Bleu, don’t make that face,” purred Trilcha, leaning into him. “If they surrender, it will be all the easier to bring them over to our side, where they should be. And if they die in battle, what better end is there?”

“Go…to…hell…” growled the Ryn, fighting the pressure on his mind. Their reply was laughter.

Nighthawk Bridge

Zakath looked up from the console as the fighters closed on the ship, looking to the freshly-minted Captain.

“Sir, Kalon reports our assault craft will be leaving soon. Orderz?”

“Prep the shuttle bay for their return. We’ll start the withdrawal when they’re aboard.”

“Very well, Sir— oh!”

“That was very unlike you, Zakath. What is it?”

“Hyperspace exitz detected! Profile fitz the Darkest Night, Captain. I believe the Admiral haz come to insure we do not ‘scratch her ship.’ Multiple support vessels appear to be coming out of hyperspace az well, fighterz launching.”

The comm crackled loudly as a signal broke through to transmit itself, bypassing the comm station completely.

“This is Admiral Cortel, all Perdition forces will stand down or be destroyed!”

“The primary threat appearz to be retreating into the azteroid field, Captain,” growled Zakath, tracking the corvette as well as the assault shuttle coming home. He could sense Nath aboard, seething in anger to what seemed like mild annoyance.

“Prepare to pursue, with the fleet here we should be able to take it!”

“Captain Bleu, please respond,” came the Admiral’s voice over a more focused communication.

“This is Captain Qurroc, ma’am. Kordath handed over command several hours ago, Admiral.”

“I see. Prepare to form up with the fleet. Do not chase the enemy into the asteroid belt. We are not prepared to do battle in that environment. The rocks would do more damage to the fleet than the enemy would.”

“Sir, they have Bleu on that corvette! He gave himself up to buy us time. I respectfully suggest we try and stop them.”

A sigh could be heard over the comm, “Of course he did. I’m afraid not, Captain. Bleu will have to handle himself for now. We’ll try and retrieve him, I assure you, but now is not the time. Get your people home and get them safe. That’s an order.”

“Yes, ma’am,” spoke Rulvak through gritted teeth, not liking that this felt like a loss for the crew. He turned to Zakath. “Status of the Talons?”

“About to board. Enemy fighterz have changed courze to engage the fleet. One moment, I detected a tranzmission from the shuttle back to the captured corvette.”

Both officers looked up through the viewport in time to watch the corvette erupt, the explosion starting near the aft.

“That was the reactor core. I suppose Mako felt the need to prevent the enemy from retrieving their property.”

“I’m picking up a lot of yelling in the hangar bay, Captain. I don’t believe that decision was made by the Commandant.”

“Ah. Our ‘observer’ decided to take over, no doubt. Great. Just great. Helm! Take us around to form up with the fleet. Get the shuttle prepped for another flight, I’m going to need to report to the Admiral I’m certain.”

Nighthawk Shuttle Bay

“Frak you, mate, just… we could have kept that ship for the fleet!”

“Oh? Did you know that we had reinforcements in-system? Did you know they were coming? I made the call based on intel that we had, Commandant, and I stand by it. Now, I’m heading to the Darkest Night, I suggest you get your people off the shuttle so I can report to Admiral Cortel.”

Mako glared at the Aedile one more time before barking orders at his men, Lily’s stare never leaving the former Jedi’s face.

“Watch your back, Tameike,” she growled, walking away. Uji shook his head, nonplussed, and settled back into a seat, noting the new Captain of the ship coming aboard as well.

“They ordered us off of the assault,” stated Rulvak.

Uji nodded. “So we have to leave Kord? He’s tougher than people give him credit for.”

“You saying that because you believe it, or because you want to?”

The Aedile didn’t respond.

Darkest Night
Briefing Room

Arcia Cortel stood before a holoscreen displaying the local area, the last of the Perdition forces having melted into the asteroid belt, leaving the Arconan fleet alone. Even the courier vessel that had been used as bait had been ordered out, the Admiral deeming them a liability.

“So, Dassac and his little band aren’t quite gone yet. Unfortunate but not unexpected. We’ve been preparing for this,” spoke the woman in a cold voice, obviously angry with the situation but holding to her self control.

“Admiral, we could have ended him,” began the Captain of the Nighthawk.

“I’m aware of the situation. We’re not certain what else was hiding in that belt. We know his forces hold ships more powerful than a pair of corvettes, though. If we’d engaged him, we would have found ourselves trapped between the asteroid belt and the Perdition fleet. The fight would have been costly. We will pick the battlefield, not Dassac.”

“What’s the next move, then?” asked the Aedile.

“We reconvene on Selen with the other Summit and Command Staff. It’s time to end this.”

To be Continued in the Fall of Perdition event in February!