[SASsy] Team Last Minute

(Morgan B. Sorenn) #1

Run-on for the [SASsy Event] Asset recovery and presentation competition

Guidelines:

  • Teams should consist of three to five members (Clans or rogues). You are encouraged to form groups outside of your units. Look for diversity in skills to help you accomplish your mission!
  • Each team must create one thread on Discourse under the Run-On category, and all posts must be published to the thread to count.
  • Threads should include [SASsy] to properly tag it.
  • No member can post twice in a row, or the Run-On will be disqualified.
  • Each post must be a minimum of 250 words with no maximum length.
  • Each member must post at least twice to qualify for placement.
  • Grading will be handled using the run-on grading rubric.

Team

(Morgan B. Sorenn) #2

Vindicator cruiser Limbo
Maridun orbit
13 hours after briefing

Sim Kar, the highest ranking engineering officer on Limbo, paced up and down the walkway splitting the Imperial cruiser’s bridge in two. In the console areas beneath her feet, affectionately referred to by the crew as “the pits”, techs and officers captain Morgan had drilled into obedience, worked tirelessly on their appointed task of scanning the planet’s surface. Sim spared the captain, cozily seated in her makeshift throne that was only recently bolted to the bridge, a glance of confidence. Morgan returned the gesture before giving her full attention to their revered, first-time guests. The Headmaster had contacted Morgan about the particulars of his mission and requested assistance, which she gladly gave. What exact price the Headmaster would pay would have to be determined at a later date, however. Still, his preference was to recruit individuals of uncanny professionalism and skill, since the artifact he was searching for was important for the Grand Master’s future plans. Taldryan’s and Scholae’s Consuls “volunteered” their people, and so here they were. All three of them rounded up into, with a nice bow at the end. Morgan couldn’t help but feel duped.

Andrelious, to her left, seemed to sneer at the raggedy pirates now occupying the bridge of what was likely once a ship of order and military efficiency under the Iron Navy. He had done that ever since he stepped foot on the ship and found it, somehow, worse condition than even some of the oldest ships in the Taldryan Navy. It’s corridors reeked of sweat and filth and it’s crew cared very little for aesthetics when keeping her in fighting shape was a priority. Still, it sat poorly with him, as a pilot and a loyal Imperial.

Aylin, to her right, had similar thoughts, but where Andrelious’ glass was half-empty, hers was half-full at least. She saw the opportunity to fix or upgrade many parts of the ship as they were escorted to the bridge, as well as on the bridge itself. Consoles were due a checkup and maintenance seemed to have been poorly done on many droids and other electronic parts. She shook her head at a “headless” astromech whose circuit brain hung loosely without any sort of cowl or covering on top. Clearly, the crew of the Limbo was lacking manpower.

“While my crew is scanning the planet, let’s discuss details,” the captain faced each of them in turn. “I won’t be going with you, as my attention is required here.” A barely audible chuckle resonated from Aylin’s lips. “That said, Sim will be your host on the surface,” Morgan pointed at her engineer, overseeing the bridge crew. “She will complement your skill nicely, I think, whereas I may just get in the way.”

Neither of them seemed to object, but neither of them seemed to particularly care who they happened to be with on the mission, either way. She was distracted by the flashing red light on her armrest, indicating the scan had ended. “Excellent, now that that’s settled, shall we discover where our temple is?”

Old Republic archeological outpost - unknown Temple
Maridun orbit

Sim sniffed the air as the doors of the shuttle opened with a hiss of hydraulics. She and her flame thrower were first out, ready to incinerate anything foolish enough to jump out of the tall grass. Andrelious and Aylin followed closely behind, with the pilot staying aboard, as planned.

The temple itself was a large structure carved out of a sheer rock face several dozen yards away. Tall grass and shrubbery covered the open field heading towards the temple, with only the occasional tree, dotted here and there. The temple’s architecture was foreign in nature, constructed from artificial and natural materials, by the looks of things. Attached to the temple, an old Republic archeological digsite which looked to still be intact.

“Looks clear,” Sim called out with an almost-confidence. In truth, she was out of her element, but she was ready to fight after reading the reports from earlier teams.

“That dig may still have power somewhere inside,” Aylin interjected. “It could help with locating the artifact if we can find a console.”

Andrelious nodded. “Keep a weather eye out for mastiffs, or however they call them. Those beaks could shred us if we are caught off guard,” he warned before leading the team towards their destination.

(Aylin Sajark) #3

The team continued on towards the digsite, keeping an eye on their surroundings. Spots was beeping and booping behind them, making it clear it didn’t like all the rubble on the ground as it followed them. Sighing and shaking her head, Aylin was now wondering if she shouldn’t have left her droid on the ship, but she wasn’t going to send it back now.

“Looks like it has seen some better days in the past,” Andrelious said when they reached one of the old buildings next to the hole in the ground leading into the buried parts of the temple.

“Better make sure nothing is hiding,” Sim started, but trailed off when she saw Aylin step into it, “in them…”

“Does she have a death wish?” She asked Andrelious who shrugged in response as he went after them. Sim reluctantly followed soon after.

Aylin and Spots both stalked about the building, trying to find anything that could help them. On one wall they found an old console with a thick layer of dust on it. As Aylin wiped the dust of it, it gave a flicker of life, but soon died out.

“Seems there is no longer enough power in the system here…” and motioned Spots over.

“But it does seem they found the temple down below if I read the papers right,” Andrelious noted as he looked through the papers on the table.

Aylin nodded halfheartedly as she was working on attaching Spots to the console to give it some power so it would work again. It didn’t take her long before the console started again and various reports started scrolling by.

“Oh, nice. They made a map of the parts they did discover down there, and some other things that sound painful.”

“Of course, I don’t think the big hounds are the only things here that would try to kill us.” Sim muttered.

Glancing towards Sim she give her a smile, “At least we have some kind of clue to stay out of harm.”

“Let’s go get us some artifact then,” Aylin said happily when there came no further response and pulled Spots free from the console, which died soon after again.

(Andrelious J. Mimosa-Inahj) #4

Andrelious felt a little better thanks to the information Aylin had acquired. The idea of entering a strange building of any kind, let alone a mysterious temple, went against every military protocol he’d ever followed.

“Is it true that you used to serve the Empire?” Sim asked Andrelious.

“What was left of it after the Rebels murdered the Emperor. Certainly could have done with some Imperial backup on this one…” the Sith responded, a little ruefully.

“From what I’ve heard, they’d have just bombed the entire place into dust,” the Clawdite scoffed.

“There is some kind of Force artefact here. That means they’d have landed and stormed the temple WITHOUT an initial bombardment. The Emperor didn’t want anyone breaking his toys,” Andrelious explained.

Sim nodded and moved over to Aylin. “Did you find out anything about defences inside? Or just that they exist?” she asked.

“There are a few locations mentioned, but not much else,” the Nautolan answered, shrugging.

“We’d best get moving. I very much doubt that we’re the only team the Shadow Academy sent. And I’d also wager that the Collective will have found out what’s here. They seem to have a knack for turning up,” Andrelious stated.

The two females stared at the Sith, as if expecting him to say more.

“Alright. I’ll lead us in. Miss Kar, you keep that flamethrower ready. If something moves, you cook it,” the Taldryanite ordered.

Activating one of his lightsabers, Andrelious entered the temple. Sim and Aylin filed in behind him, each armed with their chosen weapons.
“Turn left at the end of this first corridor. Right leads to a dead end. And a trap,” Aylin explained.

Andrelious raised a hand in acknowledgement. He could already sense that trouble was waiting for them. Sure enough, as the team reached the end of the corridor, they came face to face with a pair of mastiff phalones. The animals eyed Andrelious up, clearly thinking him to be easy prey.

One of the beasts charged the Taldryanite, but Andrelious was already on the offensive. His short height allowed him to steer his lightsaber straight through the belly of the would-be predator. He spun on his heels, ready to attack the second creature, but was instead treated to the sight of Sim’s flamethrower igniting its feathery body. The mastiff cried in surprise and agony, taking off deeper into the temple in a desperate attempt to escape its plight.

“The whole temple’s going to be crawling with those things!” Andrelious warned as he began to chase the burning mastiff. Aylin and Sim followed, unsure as to what the Sith was trying to do.

The trio entered a chamber as the mastiff fell to the ground with one final cry of pain.

“I can sense a whole load of those horrible things just through there,” MImosa-Inahj declared, gesturing at a durasteel door at the far end of the chamber.

“Probably a hatching ground,” Aylin added.

“Then expect to face the worst of their kind. There is nothing quite as dangerous as an angry mother,” Andrelious replied, reminded of how deadly Kooki became the moment anything threatened their children.

“Am I the only one finding it hard to breath in here?” Sim complained.

Aylin’s eyes scanned the room. She immediately noticed that she and her companions had been trapped.

“This chamber is completely airtight. Looks like the idea is to suck all of the air out. Pretty effective as all species need to breath,” the Nautolan explained.

Andrelious didn’t need a second invitation. He ran towards the durasteel door barring his way into the depths of the temple, even as he felt himself running out of air. His lightsaber started to cut its way through, allowing air to rush through and nullify the chamber’s trap mechanism.

“Get yourselves ready, girls. The locals aren’t going to appreciate us dropping in!” Andrelious warned.

(Morgan B. Sorenn) #5

Slabs of molten durasteel oozed and crumbled at Andrelious’ feet as he stepped back. He concentrated for but a moment and pushed out with the Force. The force was enough to throw the debris left in the hole outward, towards the chamber beyond. The gust of air rushed in even stronger.

Without skipping a beat, the Sith jumped through and rolled to his feet on the other side, saber at the ready. The room was wider and longer than any of the other ones they had gone through, with broken down walls and floors. Twelve tall pillars, set up in a circle and holding up the ceiling, dominated the room. The pillars had crumbled in places, leaving yawning holes above them through which sunlight shone inside, and moss had grown nearly to the floor. The massive room had several additional exits, some blocked by crumbling stone, others most likely leading to other parts of the temple.

Sim and Aylin jumped through the hole in the door once it had cooled enough. Their gazes were instantly drawn toward the center of the room, the open floor between the pillars, now filled with nests where mastiff phalones cared for their young. There were dozens of them and their attention now was firmly on the trio.

“Oh, this isn’t gonna be easy,” Sim said matter-of-factly as she considered pulling her grenade launcher out. She took one glance at the crumbling pillars and thought better of it. They didn’t need the room falling on their heads.

Aylin pointed at several bodies strewn about the nests. The Shadow Academy team found a cruel end indeed. Young mastiff plucked at their open wounds as the adults positioned themselves between the party and their prodigy.

“And where is our artifact?” Andrelious never took his gaze off of several of the creatures slowly creeping towards them.

“I think I see where the artifact is!” Ayling jumped a bit and pointed at the small alcove with some sort of decorated altar on the opposite side of the room - well past the mastiffs now baring their way. “That has to be it.”

Andrelious, finally shifting his attention from the creatures, sensed an aura about the alcove. It gave him a sickening feeling, but not an unfamiliar one.

“Well, as long as you don’t mind I’ll step up first,” Sim pushed forwards, in front of Andrelious. “My 'thrower’ll keep these critters away. Sith-boy, you take the back and keep them from jumping us. Small’n’green, you take on the middle and kill anything that gets past him. We rush in, grab the damned thing, and get the hell out.” Sim readied her flamethrower as the other positioned themselves.

After a moment pause Andrelious yelled, “Go!”

(Aylin Sajark) #6

Then everything happened at once, the creatures jumped at them and Sim started to fry them on the spot with her flamethrower. Those lucky few that got past her got shot by Aylin or sliced in half by Andrelious. The whole room was filled with a cacophony of screams, shots and swooshing sounds.

Between the sounds, Aylin heard her droid beeping angrily at her as he wanted to join the fight too. “No, Spots! Stay there, we will return soon.” the droid beeped again and moved back and forth before disappearing back into the room.

With that the group advanced further as the first wave of attacks slowed a bit. The creatures circling around them before attacking again. Andrelious let out a wave of lightning, striking them head on. Aylin flinched back from his attack, she knew he was a Space wizard, but it always frightened her when they used their powers.

Slowly they advanced and the fight started to lessen as there were less of the hounds around to attack them. It didn’t take them long to reach alcove were Aylin thought she saw the artefact they were looking for.

“Sith-boy, go jump up and grab it, we will keep those mastiffs of down here.”

Andrelious nodded and used the Force to jump up towards the alcove and moved over towards the little altar. He janked the lid of the small box and grabbed the tablet from it.

“Got it!” He yelled as he jumped back down.

“Good, we need to leave now! More of them are coming this way.” Sim stated.

“Not without my droid, he can’t get past the door!”

Frowning sharply, Andrelious shook his head, “We can’t just go back for that droid, we need to leave, now!”

“But…” Aylin gulped and started to run, moving after Sim, fearing what the Sith would do to her if she would go against him.

Zapping a few more mastiffs that were trying to bite them in their tail, Andrelious ran after them.

(Andrelious J. Mimosa-Inahj) #7

The journey from Maridun to Arx had been a quiet affair. Andrelious had put aside a few of his reservations about the crew of the Limbo and enjoyed a few drinks in the ship’s cantina, whilst Aylin brooded about the loss of her droid. Sim disappeared somewhere into the bowels of the ship on some other tasks for Morgan. It was only when the ship began its approach to the Brotherhood’s capital that the team re-assembled.

“Is that the best you can do?” Aylin asked Andrelious as she studied his formal outfit.

“His size didn’t make things easy,” Morgan quipped. “Especially when he turned down two other offers,”

“Oh? Were they any nicer?” the Nautolan questioned.

“Of course. A lovely floor length little number. Might have found it a bit difficult to walk, but…”

“I suggest you stop there. Need I remind you what a Mimosa-Inahj can do to a Sorenn?” Andrelious hissed.

“I wouldn’t start making those kind of threats around here. Touch me and the three dozen pirates on this deck will be the least of your worries,” Morgan warned.

“So do we know anything about this tablet? Do we know why the Shadow Academy want it so badly?” Aylin queried, trying to diffuse the mood.

“All I can tell you is that the inscription is in Ancient Sith. No doubt the Academy have the staff to translate it,” Andrelious explained.

“Well, we’ll find out soon enough,” Morgan stated with a smirk. “Our shuttle awaits,”

-x-

The Shadow Academy had spared no expense for its gala. Beings of all shapes and sizes moved around each other in a seemingly infinite variety of suits, gowns and dress uniforms.

“How are we going to find Clery? With so many people here we won’t even be able to sense her properly,” Andrelious complained.

“Easy. She’s old. Older even than the Elders of Taldryan,” Morgan explained.

“Do they even exist? I thought they were just legends,” Aylin added.

Andrelious looked hurt. “They’re legends because hardly anyone lived to tell the tale. Besides, I’ve met them. All of them. Even that traitor Cotelin…”

“You can lament about Karufr later! Looks like Clery’s about to make some kind of speech,” Morgan commented, gesturing towards a raised podium in the middle of the room.

A frail, yet sprightly Human woman in a bright green ballgown stepped up to the podium, waiting patiently for the crowd to hush.

“Welcome all to our gala. The Headmaster himself will be here shortly, but he’s asked me to welcome some special guests. These individuals have risked their lives to bring an addition to our archives,” Clery began.

“I thought such things didn’t exist!” someone shouted from the crowd. The archivist frowned for a second, before continuing.

“Those of you who just came back from the mission to Maridun. I believe you have something for our collection?” Deandria challenged.

Andrelious and Aylin, urged on by Morgan, walked towards the podium. Just before they reached it, Sim Kar appeared from the throng of people.

“Didn’t think I’d miss this, did you?” she beamed.

Clery smiled at the threesome. “Thank you, all of you. We had our doubts that you’d come through, or that you’d even work together. As it happens, we sent another team in after you. Just in case you didn’t make it past the mastiffs,”

“I’m going to guess most of those men are dead,” Andrelious interrupted.

“That’s not important. However, they did find something of interest…” the elderly woman replied.

Aylin heard a familiar sound.

“Spots!” she cried, delighted.

“Consider that our gift to you for your service. And all of you have also earned unmonitored access to our archives…”

Clery paused for a few moments to gauge the team’s reactions. Andrelious didn’t seem too impressed, whilst Aylin wondered exactly how the archives would be of use to a slicer. Morgan and Sim were nowhere to be found, likely disinterested in whatever reward the old woman had promised.

“…for 3 months,” the archivist added.