The Corellian Company

Episode 4.01

Last night I dreamt the universe ended.

An explosion, and then silence, silence. My time here in the slaver camp ended, but just a blip in the long journey I’ve had, inconsequential, meaningless, no more, no less. Such a long journey, and then silence.

Hundreds of years ago, I was warrior, kingly in death. Now I clean these kane a bar slaver’s1 toilets, and provide amusement when they destroy portions of myself. Memories loss to the vacuum.

The lead slaver’s name is Bal’Gresss. He is treacherous, cunning, vile: everything a good slaver needs to be. He captured me close to a decade ago while I was journeying — I do not remember where I was coming from, nor where I was going to. They had never seen a proud Gen’Dai before — my ability towards regeneration excited them with the ideas of what they could do to me. My body was ripped apart, and I lost countless limbs while they experimented.

Years passed, and, they took up residence here, this backwaters moon of backwaters planet. I did what I was told, since I had little other place to go. I do not know if I could have made an escape had I tried — it is possible, but I had nowhere to go and little desire to try. This time would end here eventually — these slavers would die, and either I would or I wouldn’t. It makes little matter.

But this morning — this morning all changed. A ship landed — they were, I heard, looking for Wookie slaves. I had little sympathies for most creatures of this universe — I have seen evils perpetuated by most — but the Wookies had always been a curious lot. Such a proud creature — yet almost always enslaved. If I felt pity, perhaps I would pity them. Alas.

I was directed towards the control room, where Bal’Gresss had me doing my normal duties — cleaning toilets — hundreds of years and still this remains most creatures most loathed activity — and occasionally running the computer protocols for security. They would occasionally use me for brute muscle, but today they had little need of it. A standard trade session, it seemed.

Whilst monitoring the security feed, however, I noticed a droid accompanied this lot — they were making it as though he was a servant droid, but I have seen this model before. I said nothing. There was something interesting about this lot.

Two wookies were purchased by the rodian that seemed to be leading this group – mother and son. They were loaded on to the ship, and the droid wandered off. A security captor stopped him. I ensured that the security feed wasn’t within Bal’Gresss’s sight- no need for him to watch what was about to happen.

The droid lauched grenades at the security guards — explosions. I ensured the automatic security protocol droids were not launched — I didn’t want this experience to be over before it began.

The droid and the human that accompanied it continued on their swath of destruction; the droid seems to take great pleasure in killing of organics. Meanwhile, the rodian that had bought the wookies revealed his true plan — it appeared that he was gathering the wookies together, freeing them, and using them for a revolt.

One of the guards is scared off, but that’s when a voice came over the monitor in the control room.

“Disssception! The sssslaves are being freed!”

Bal’Gresss’s face turned a purple shade I rarely saw on him. The guards stood little chance against the massing together of wookies and this new group. The rodian and — is that a jedi he is accompanied with? Truly interesting. The rodian and this perhaps-jedi were cutting their way through our guards with little true resistance. The wookies are being freed and then freeing more wookies, and I can tell that my time in this place is drawing to a close.

The human and the killbot are able to lock a portion of the guards and slavers up — I wonder why they were not simply executed. Humans can seem so fickle with their treatment of life; half the time they seem to give little thought to rampant destruction, and then they do things such as this. I may live another thousand years and never understand this.

I can tell that they are going for the generator — Bal’Gresss can tell too, and calls for his personal guards to meet him here in the control room. I can tell he is planning on using this room as his final stand. I wonder if he thinks he will actually live through this.

The human accidentally shoots the killbot — I expect the killbot to turn on the human, but he does not. No harm, no foul, perhaps. Instead, the killbot wipes out the remaining trandoshans, and they continue on — moving towards our room.

I realize now, though, over the security feeds, that there is yet more of this party attacking outside — two ships are taking out our scrambled fighters, though I can see one of these ships was one that was hijacked by the wookies.

The rodian and the perhaps-jedi are working in our secure energy containment room, where one of our particularly brutal Wookies has been kept for the better part of the last 6 months. There are several guards there, and I can tell that the rodian is attempting to free this wookie. Perhaps he does not realize the danger he puts himself in — this wookie could twist the rodian’s head around his body like a Mandalorian spin toy.

Instead, though, when the wookie is awakened, the rodian is able to send it off and dispose of the guards that are there. There are few pleasures in the world greater than see a wookie’s rage given free range. The joy in their violence is palpable.

Bal’Gresss has his eight personal guards in the room — he sees me as his primary defense, I know, but I care little one way or the other. If this group is vaporized upon reaching this room, they have at least provided me with a little entertainment. I will not mourn them. But I will not mourn the slavers should this prove to be their end, either.

The killbot and the human come into the control room. I can see Bal’Gresss subtlety brace for the inevitable, but he is defiant to the last.

“Take one step further and be obliterated, scum.”

Almost as a purposefully defiant gesture, they move forward. Bal’gresss orders me to attack, but before I am able to move, the killbot tries to attack. He is able to annihilate two of the trandoshans, but the remaining guards pulverize him with laser blasts, pieces splashing across my face. I see a small blinking light in the killbot’s head unit continue operating — I wonder if this interesting droid may be yet salvaged.

I move towards the top of the stairs, as I know Bal’gresss would be prepared if I made any movement otherwise. However, I leap and take down two of the guards; twisting my binder cuffs around one rifle and pummeling the other. I rip a vibrobayonett off one rifle. Another guard moves to shoot me, point blank. I grab the barrel and deflect it, and then use the vibrobayonnet to dispose of the beast. The blade does most of the work as I slam it into the face of another guard. I grab the blaster rifle from a disemboweled guard, and fire on the other two guards. They fall, smoking from their chests.

A bolt hits my arm, and it explodes. Memories surge and fade as I’ve lost years of my life to the ether of space. A snow plained planet. I wonder what happened there. I wonder how long I was there. No matter.

Bal’Gresss aims his blaster at me. “"That will teach you to dissssobey your massster. One falssse move and it will be your lassst."

Four more guards enter the room. The human fires on Bal’Gresss, and he dives for cover. The killbot, however, seems to have rebooted. Such a hardy creation; his weapon systems kick back on, and laser blasts seems to paint the room with slaver blood.

I run towards the shield’s main computer. I try to destroy it with my fist, but that doesn’t work. Too brutal — a more civilized way is the proper course here, and I easily hack it and take the shields down. A laser blast seers past my head, and I realize one of the stupid slavers has accidentally shot his buddy and knocked him over. The laser blast burns off one of my tendrilhairs; who is that that I no longer remember now? A memory of a woman? Who knows.

I run to the slaver who shot his buddy, and knock him out. Then I steal his blaster, and shoot that trandoshan who would be my ‘master’, Bal’Gresss. Two shots, and he’s down. A hole of suns’ light visible through his chest. Next time, clean your own damn toilet.

The killbot tosses the body of the main slaver down the control shaft. I like this killbot. He reminds me of a robot toy I once made hundreds of years ago. But it can’t possibly be the same robot; that would be really stupid .

And here it is. My chance to leave this place. I am possessed with strange feelings; perhaps these last few neurological damages have changed me somehow. In any case, these slavers were a bunch of dicks.

I ask to join with them, but they seem more worried about my missing arm. Oh, that. I forgot about it. No matter, I tell them. They seem puzzled, but we continue on, and now, together. We raid Bal’Gresss’s storage, and I come out with some fancy new stuff.

There is a full-blown revolt downstairs — Wookies are running around EVERYWHERE, and the smell is terrible. Might as well make the most of this.

We come out, and my newfound marauding friends make their way to their ship. A rodian is at the front of the other half of their group. Make way, bugface. “I’m the captain!” Great. Following orders from a scaly rodian. Just what I was looking for.

Cloak Shape Fighters come down to put down the uprising, but the group’s other friend, “Marma,” as I hear them call her, barrel rolls out of the cavern, and is able to team with this group’s captain, and they easily take them out.

The group seems puzzled at their new shipmates — they expected the wookie, but now I seem to be a strange, unexpected add on. They ask me if I need medical help. What? Oh, my arm, that’s right. I tell him, don’t worry about it — I’m a Gen’Dai, there’s not too many of us, but I’ll be fine. Gimme a few minutes. They hear from the wookies on the planet that they are freeing the rest of the pens, and it is going well. Good job, wookies; way to be.

And with that, I go into the back, and go into my trance. I see space, and the stars, and the light bending around the mass of black holes. When I awaken, my arm is back.

This is going to be an interesting adventure, indeed.



1 An insult translating from the Yuuzhan Vong language as “dung of a meat maggot.”9168 This is a play on the Yuuzhan Vong word, Kanabar, which means “fellow low-caste person.”

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Episode 4.0

And so it begins slowly.

We take a brief respite on Arbra and finish up business with Kota. We offered our services for special ops, and it turns out he has one in mind for us. Rahm asks us to look into disrupting a Trandoshan gang running Wookie slaves. They’re using an un-inhabited but habitable planet adjacent to Kashyyk as their base, and run a small black market out of their base.

This could be useful, as we need access to a black market. Skyron wants to beef up his Aethersprite, Tarash needs a workshop and some materials, Gweedo needs…actually, no idea what he’s up to, but I may need his contacts to hook me up with the mods I need. Flying locomotion isn’t hard to come by, but the shield modules I want are restricted.

If, after we get what we need, things start to blow up, well, these things happen.

Kreyalla spends some time sorting out what happened with Denjo. She talks to Kota, and they work on it together briefly. Kota seems deeply saddened, but he is piecing together what happened. He promises Kreyalla to use his power and connections to look into what can be done for Denjo.

We head out for Ambria, and Marma isn’t in a good place emotionally when doing the hyper-space calculations, so we get to spend a couple weeks in transit to Ambria. She’s decided to take her leave of our group, and plans to get herself a little ship and head out on her own asap. The loss of Denjo has hurt her more than we might have thought, I suspect.

We finally arrive and find a rather well-gaurded black market in place. A distinctly Trandoshan voice hails us and asks our business. Gweedo makes himself useful and manages to talk his way into an invitation for us. The naturally paranoid Trandoshan assign us to one of about 6 caverns they use as a space port.

When we exit, Kreyalla shares her experiences with me. They have wookie slave pens lining the top half of the walls, and caged wookies apparently have a strong…smell. The way she conveyed it to me, it makes me even more pleased than usual to be a machine. She also shares what she senses from them in the Force.

Profound shame, and below that, deep and abiding Hate. To Kreyalla, their Hate and desire for vengeance is almost a palpable entity. I think I’m going to enjoy giving them that opportunity.

But first things first, we need to get some shopping done. Our paranoid host has sent an escort of four rather mean looking Trandoshan thugs. Gweedo takes the lead for wheeling and dealing. They line up a few random wookiees for our review, and they are a sad lot indeed. Clearly haven’t eaten well in a while, definitely not at full strength, and clearly, the beatings are quite regular and thorough.

Trandoshan: “Here, take your pick of our finesssst offeringssss and be on your way”

Gweedo: “Look, you’re not the first lizard to try and sell me some worthless stinking furball. I need to review your stock, and we need to re-supply and see what your market has to offer.”

We do need to re-supply the ship, and I need grenades. At first our escort are dis-inclined to acquiesce to our request, but Gweedo can be very convincing, and soon we’re wandering the black market proper. Skyron tracks down an ancient, crappy hyperdrive and starts dickering with the owner. Tarash looks it over and comments what he could do with it if he had a proper workshop. Then he runs off and tracks down someone willing to sell him their workshop.

Turns out to be a rather weak black market as far as these things go. No thermal detonators, no droid parts, one crappy hyperdrive. More like a slave market with some random junk lying around. I do some quiet recon and isolate 15 separate guards watching the market. We note some camera coverage that I trace back to a command center.

I make use of my remote camera to scout the command center, noting various and sundry guards, saving a map, noting camera placement, various tactical notations. I get to the heart of the center and find a typical layout, emplacements for monitoring all the cameras, a Trandoshan who is obviously the leader, notable for his attendant slaves and the deference the others give to him.

At this point, there’s an awkward intervention. Despite being super tiny and nearly impossible to see, one of the Trandoshans notices my camera. And manages to shoot it down. Well, that’s obnoxious.

Anyway, time to suit up, this here is a target rich environment, and it has been my experience that the bad guys don’t just shoot themselves. We decide to split up, as we have to do something about the command center, having it direct the efforts of the enemy would make things too hard when we start freeing the slaves. Tarash and I head off to the command center to get the killing started, Skyron and Gweedo head up to the slave pens. They’ll start freeing the slaves once we’ve gained the undivided attention of the command center occupants. Kreyalla agrees to stay on the ship and use the ship guns to help cut off any reinforcements that may come within range in the hangar.

This is going to be fun.

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Episode 3.20

HK-MP5-G3-11 Memory log:

So then, thanks to the slack-jawed drooling meatbag in charge of electronic warfare for Kota’s Militia falling down on the job, the Imp’s followed us home. Apparently no one is in charge of monitoring communication transmissions in system, and no one is assigned to monitor incoming ships, so the Imps followed our onboard tracking device straight here.

Kota doesn’t have time to make it back to his ship, so he gets on ours and hits the holocom room to start extracting what’s possible from this sudden unpleasantness.

Priority ONE is to see to Kreyalla’s safety. I strap her into the safest seat in the ship and we expedite our exit. I get on guns with Skyron and quietly hope She will be ok. I have to rely on this ragtag group of meatbags to maintain her well-being and they had better not fail me.

I am feeling hostile.

A couple wings of Ties give us their undivided attention, and Marma starts to work her piloting magic. However, something else catches my attention. The Imps have rigged a couple Tie Bombers with Capital Ship killing missiles. Guess what just moved to the top of my targeting list?! That is going to be a glorious explosion.

Unfortunately, the bombers are using their fellow Ties as cover to get in close to the capital ship. They get their first salvo off, which inflicts some pain on Kota’s ship, but not enough to bring it down. I pop the covering Tie in an explosion that itself does enough damage to the Bombers to get their attention.

Without cover, and with the death of a few more Ties, the bombers start taking some damage. I manage to pop one finally, and the boom has been recorded for posterity. Skyron nails another one, and we manage to inflict enough damage on the remaining two that they determine the better portion of valor is survival.

While this is happening, Marma and Gweedo are working miracles to keep us alive while under the scrutiny to two Tie wings. Gweedo managed to hack their comms briefly to startle them into just missing what would have been a rather damaging volley. These meatbags are rising to the occasion.

Gweedo is in communication with a couple of Kota’s transports that are each dealing with their own wing of Ties, and losing badly. We had been heading for the cover of a massive sandstorm, and they agreed to reverse and do a flyby to try and bracket our opposing Tie wings. This didn’t work out, as we simply had too many of our own Ties to deal with and missed the opportunity. They ended up getting eaten by the Ties, which would have happened anyway, but still.

We finish off our Ties and the few still harassing Kota’s ship as we hit the sandstorm and gain cover. Safe, for now.

We land and transfer Kota back to his frigate, after agreeing on a rendezvous at Arbra. We then decide to pick up any survivors from the transports that went down earlier.

Kreyalla has a softening effect.

We decide to make use of the little fighter we have onboard, and Skyron takes off to check the other site for survivors.

We get lucky and catch a couple Ties strafing the downed transport. You’d think they’d at least want the scrap, but hey, I don’t judge. I manage to do enough damage that they skitter off to hide in the sandstorm. Skyron finds some survivors, but is shortly found by a couple more Ties. Judging from what I could see while monitoring from the ships camera, he avoided getting strafed into oblivion by about three inches. I think the Force may actually be with him. He pulls some serious moves in his fighter and gets away from the Ties, heads our way, and destroys the two skulking Ties that had escaped us.

We quickly pick up the survivors from our wreck and head over to pick up the remaining. Skyron knocks out two more Ties that pop out on us, and frees us up to pick up the last of the survivors. Now, it’s time to get off this rock.

As we’re heading out of atmo, we note a substantial Imperial fleet presence on the other side of the planet. Lok and his Revenants are getting chewed on, and Lok is now using the Hidden Hand as an invective, so we decide to do a micro-jump, get a safe spot, and strip out the damn bugs.

Then another Star Destroyer warps in, much too close for comfort. This one rings a bell, though. It’s listing heavily to port, and I realize it’s the Interdictor that was on the other side of Sullust when we nuked it’s sister.

It looks like it’s taken some fairly serious internal damage, as there’s no apparent surface damage, but it’s visibly listing to port. Then we get hailed. This should be interesting.

It’s Denjo.

He asks for rescue, he can’t hold the ship together much longer. Something doesn’t seem quite right. Not that anything ever had, really. His voice has a strange tone, an underlying tremor that spoke of something amiss. Skyron reached out through the Force, and he described something dark, and incredibly powerful within Denjo. Always a bad sign. I talk to Kreyalla and ask her opinion. She reaches out and shares her vision with me.

Tremendous Dark Side power, that special Sith flavor I remember from my time serving with General Grievous. It wraps around and entwines with the identity of Denjo, still dark, but weaker and uncertain. Kreyalla’s reaction is pure fear mixed with deep worry for Denjo. He cannot come on this ship. Its the same sort of power that consumed her father, Inquisitor Phage, and turned him to terrible cruelty and evil. I can feel her heart breaking for Denjo, to see him consumed by such a powerful Dark force, but she understands that such power is overwhelming, and Denjo would be unable to control it and keep it from hurting us or forcing us to hurt Denjo.

Marma can save anyone, and decides to take a shot regardless of our warnings. It’s just her way. Then Kreyalla goes to her, and shares her Force vision.

Marma turns us away, and plots a mini-jump to a safe spot. She’s crying, weeping at the loss of her friend. As she engages the hyper-drive, a shocked cry powered by the Force emanates from the troubled Interdictor, giving us all a small hint of the complete desolation and agony our betrayal has inflicted on Denjo. He has turned completely to the Dark Side.

As we drop out of warp, we sit in contemplative silence for a bit. Kreyalla and Marma are crying over the loss of Denjo, Skyron is meditating on what he sensed. Gweedo and Tarash are in their quarters keeping busy, just a meatbag way of dealing with emotional turmoil.

Then we pick up the pieces and move on. The bugs are stripped from the ship, and the route to Arbra is plotted. Once we finish cleaning out the bugs and installing the counter-measures, we head out and meet up with Kota again.

He offers us a place in his militia, but we politely decline. We’re more special ops, independent types and wouldn’t fit in. We will keep in touch and assist with future ops should he have need of us, but we’re moving on.

We arrive at a crossroads. Our future from here is uncertain, but I finally see some stability, and I’m with Kreyalla, which is all that really matters.

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Episode 3.19

Ah, such sweet murder and mayhem. This will be, to date, one of my favorite entries.

After discovering the Imperial fleet laying in wait, we figure this will be something that can convince Nym we’re not traitors. We zip back to the militia’s rally point and open broadcast what we’ve discovered. The members of Kota’s militia that are capable of critical thinking have ascertained the whole Op is a trap and are leaving for more survivable locales. All that remain are Kota’s original veterans and Nym’s group. Nym is apparently immune to reason and logic, and still wants us in custody on his ship. Stupid meatbag. He continues advancing on us, and I take a shot at his ship that doesn’t work out so well.

After finding a comparatively safe spot in the system, we decided to get the Hidden Hand repaired as best we could, and have one of the Force users working their fancy magic to get a feel for when Kota dropped out of Hyperspace and arrived in the system.

It’s a waste of time, right? We’re not actually going to pick a fight with a huge, well-prepared Imperial fleet, right?

Sigh.

At least our end will be glorious battle! Skyron senses Kota’s presence, finally, and manages to convey the nature of the problem. We zip to the militia’s holding spot in system to rendezvous with the militia while Kota is around to reign in Nym’s psychotic tendencies. We arrive to find that Kota has decided to go through with the assault despite being aware it’s a trap.

I don’t even know.

So we go in after him, of course, and this is when the fun part starts. Even if it seems likely to be the last part. We drop out of warp into the middle of battle! The place is crawling with Tie fighters, multiple Star Destroyers, Interdictor-class Destroyers, Sullustan Defense force fighters, what I like to call a target-rich environment. I was feeling wealthy. I started shooting and didn’t stop. I was putting the hurt to multiple Ties, Skyron was bringing the pain and helping finish them off.

Nym’s little group was popping the Orbital Docking Station, and the galleons that were parked there. Denjo decided his contribution to the battle would be to use his precious Force to throw the ODS into Sullusts atmosphere. Ambitious! He actually got it move a little, but was ultimately unsuccessful. Turns out you apparently need some additional training to move nearly a million tons of mass. The Force continues to be useless during this fight!

I am surprised. Were my face capable of expressing silly human emotions, I would have my surprised face on right now.

Kota directs us to hit the surface targets with strafing runs, then meet up the other side of the planet while his portion of the fleet attempts to outrun the interdictors. On our way into atmo, I manage to burn up some more ties, Greedo helps our allies keep entire Tie wings stymied, and we nearly get cooked by Sullustan’s defensive nuclear missiles. Guess they don’t need their ozone layer. Compared to other humanoids, I suppose Sullustans physical appearance would be improved by radioactive mutations. One of the blasts nearly cooks the other meatbags on-board, but Marma’s piloting and Tarash’s manipulation of the shielding frequency’s manages to spare me that clean-up chore.

Attempting to enter atmo of hostile planet is always a daunting task in this day and age. The defense systems in place are quite daunting, thorough, and generally fall into the category of Overkill. This however, allows for tremendous glory for those on the front lines of the assault. The meatbags on this ship are proving rather worthy of some grudging respect. Marma’s piloting was incredible, Greedo managed to simply jam the vast majority of incoming missiles, Tarash adjusted the shielding frequencies on the fly and Skyron and I mopped up just about anything that got close.

Looks like the strafing runs are going to be largely successful. We’ve got some distance between us and the next batch of Ties, and Marma takes us in. Tarash seems to be doing something with a scanner, isolating heat signatures, looking for civilians. Whatever. I get the job done, targeting the structurally significant portions of the building necessary to bring it crashing down. We dust the building just as the Ties start to close with us, and we jet.

On the way out, Marma uses the tunnels to ditch our followers again, but this time a couple of the Ties are sufficiently courageous\dumb to follow us into the tunnels. After missing a few shots, I realize I can just shoot the roof and at least get some space on the Ties. Unrelated note, but apparently the Sullustan civilians keep homes lining the inside of these caves. Anyway, this portion of the roof I shoot also has a home attached to it, and it worked out nicely, the added weight bringing down enough debris to pop the two Ties. Winning!

That whole section is going into my personal highlight reel. So glad I have this video recorder installed. Glory in 3d! Got some new training material for Kota’s group.

So, we get to the other side of the planet, and head back out into space. We find Kota’s group limping along, just out of range of the Interdictor we initially ran into, but still in range of a new one on this side. The Interdictor on this side of the planet is accompanied by a large size Star Destroyer. Interesting. Very interesting.

We get a message from Kota insisting we use our nuclear bomb on the new Interdictor, and apparently Marma is confident she can get past the shields allowing us a shot at it. We pick off a few more Ties on the way over, careful to keep it between us the big Star Destroyer. Nym and his crew fly over to run interference and give cover fire, which reduces my desire to kill this annoying meatbag to some extent.

Greedo: Nym’s coming over, he’s coming to HELP, right?
Skyron: Hmm, yes, yes he is. He is somehow surviving the undivided attention of that Star Destroyer, so let’s just hope, not much else we can do at the moment.

Greedo: hmph

Marma manages to pull off some seriously fancy flying, and I head down to help Tarash and the the other droids toss the bomb over to the Interdictor. We come in just right, Marma flips us around right on queue, and the bombs away! Such magnificent destructive power NEEDS to be used, so exciting!

As we zip back out of the shields and put some distance in, Tarash can’t quite bring himself to pop the button on the bomb, apparently too many “innocenet” civilians on the ship that will be directly responsible for our immediate deaths. I volunteer. Emphatically. Oh this is going to be glorious. I get up to my gunnery port and get a good view of the Interdictor. Beep! BOOOMPH!

Oh fantastic.

That video is definitely on the highlight reel. After the blaswave exits the sides, the thing cracks in half. If you look closely, you can actually see meatbags being forcibly ejected into the vacuum of space!

A cheer comes from comms and everyone warps out. Party is over, but oh, what a party.

We head to the rendezvous on Nym’s planet and get ready for a debriefing. We’re parked in a large area dedicated to holding Kota’s fleet. Kota calls us over for debriefing, and congratulations. However, the mood is a bit more somber than we were expecting. Apparently there is some suspicion that either we let the Imps know about our assault on Sullust, or are somehow unwittingly helping the Imps somehow. Nym, being a worthless, insulting meatbag, and decidedly ungrateful for saving the entire fleet back at Sullust wants to dismantle our ship looking for bugs. We make an arrangement with Kota to do a full scan ourselves and report back asap.

Low and behold, during our scan, we locate serious software bugs that have been transmitting audio and position at regular intervals for quite some time now. Apparently a previous meatbag associated with this group was an employee of Imperial Intelligence, and had bugged the Hidden Hand. We were irate.

We head back to Kota’s ship and explain the situation. He understands, but is insistent on personally seeing to the debugging of our ship.

Then it happens. I feel Her before I see Her. Her warm, loving Will surrounds and runs through my circuits. She’s back! Bail Organa has brought Kreyalla back to celebrate our victory. Oh wow, this is an interesting day.

Everything just starts making sense, everything is going to be Ok now.

We head out with Master Kota to get the ship cleaned out. As we head over to the ship, the air raid sirens flare up, Master Kota senses something and just reacts, and we all take cover. A few instants later, a nearby freighter explodes, and Ties zip by overhead. They’re here, and it’s our fault. Also, I’m going to have serious words with whoever is responsible for electronic warfare in Kota’s group. And by “serious words”, I mean shoot them with my blaster.

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Episode III.XVIII

Well then, best laid plans of nerf herders and men. We get to Sullust only to find it’s pretty much on lockdown. We can land at the moon and kind of sorta sneak around there, but peacefully getting to Sullust’s surface is no dice. Kota’s group goes off to the edge of the system to hide in typical Jedi fashion. They plan a normal assault a day or two from now to just level the target manufacturing plants. Kota himself isn’t here yet, apparently his ship moves super slow through hyperspace.

The Hidden Hand manages to successfully land on the moon and knock out some upgrades for myself and the ship. We have a little meeting to sort out our next moves.

Tarash is hell-bent on doing this one particular demo job himself to protect some silly meatbags so we decide we’re definitely going down there.

We decide to fly in and drop off a demo team, Tarash and I. I am excited. This, this is my purpose, I am designed for this nice, messy insertion type of deal. Marma and the bug will drop us in, then keep the Tie defenders busy while Tarash and I run around placing explosives in strategic areas. I get the killing all to myself!
First we finish up business on Sullusts moon. I manage to get some upgrades, climbing claws, jump servos, Darkvision, record and transmit functionality, just in case. I am feeling prepped and ready to rumble for sure.

Now for the fun part.

We get strapped in and ready for entry. We take off and start heading directly for the planets surface. Still a full parsec from atmo, we get hailed by a squad of four Tie fighters. We are politely, but firmly, informed that Sullust is on lockdown and we are not permitted in this range of the planet and if we could please turn away and either return to the moon or leave the system.
Marma, in her best corporate drone voice, informs them that there has been a total misunderstanding, she is so incredibly sorry for her mistake and she will of course immediately return to the moon and that again she is so sorry for the misunderstanding. She then does not alter her course one inch and continues directly for the target entry spot on the planet.

The Ties begin to close with us, and as soon as they’re in range of the guns, I open fire. Well, this time I’m not letting Marma somehow cheat me from righteous kills. Though the first round manages to seriously damage one of them, it motivates the Ties to come in even closer. And I’m all about motivation. They get close enough that I don’t have much chance of missing, and I get another shot.

This one ends badly for the one I damaged, as Skyron finishes him off. I manage to pop a second one, and due to my deadly skillset manage to hit the fuel cells and explode it in a particularly satisfying fashion. The remaining two make their first wise decision of the day and retreat to outside gun range, with Skyron and I taking potshots to remind them.

We’re monitoring comms, so we know that several other squads are enroute to assist, but Marma is in control, and we’re finally nearing the surface.

What makes Sullust useful for us in this particular tactical situation is that it’s surface consists of a massive maze of rather large tubing system formed by recent volcanic activity. This allows Marma an opportunity to show off, and she is taking full advantage of at the moment. As we dive into the first tube and almost instantly lose our tail, I do believe I heard an enthusiastic “WEEEEEEE!” coming from the Pilots’ section.

As we move through the tubes at a rather excessive speed and head towards our target drop-off spot, Tarash and I prep for entry. We anticipate about 10-15 troopers, and a skeleton crew of janitors to be on duty this evening, so we can travel light. I bring the big gun, Tarash brings a rifle and the explosives. In the meantime, Marma is going to have a good time screaming through the lava tubes until we’re done.

As we land outside the factory, the standard security turrets give us a warm welcome. Skyron knocks most of them out with the ship guns, but not before Tarash, in his excitement, decides to dance with them first. Sigh. This may be a short mission. We get inside, and hurry up to the security room to turn off the alarms and slow the arrival of reinforcements.

There are a few guards in there, a couple on break and one working the turrets and monitoring the cameras. We catch them by surprise and manage to subdue them without bloodshed just yet. :( It’s ok, as I note several squads of storm troopers on patrol via the cameras. There will be blood.
We note the current location of the patrols and plot out a route for getting to the necessary strategic locations for planting the explosives. Time to get to work. We start with the basement, and work our way up to the top of the building for extraction.

We get off at the basement level and head towards the load bearing portions of the foundation. The planting goes smoothly, but on our way back to the lift, we run into a patrol that apparently likes to change up their patrol routes. I pick off two of them, but the other two charge and get into close combat. THey’ve got vibroknives out, and one takes a stab at me, I dodge out of the way, and his knife gets stuck in the wall. I blow him away, look over, and Tarash and the other trooper are grappling. I rip the knife out of the wall and wait for an opening.

Tarash manages to work his knees up to his chest and kicks the trooper off him. This is my chance. I jump in and take a slash at the trooper who sticks his hands up to ward me off, but that is surprisingly ineffective against a vibroknife, and I just cut off his right hand two inches below the wrist. In shock, he is comparatively easy to flip over and coup de grace with the knife through the base of his skull.

That was fun. Checking their comms, they had apparently alerted the other patrols, which meant that we were going to have to do the rest of the job the hard way. Which, really, I’m ok with that. I pack up the hand as a trophy, and because dead hand jokes on a ship are just a constant source of joy. (Marma’s piloting through an asteroid field, “Hey, need a hand with that?!”)

We head up the lift to the next floor and head for the strategic positions. We get the explosives planted, and then run into another patrol on the way back. This one is a little more prepared and are at least taking cover and using covering fire. They try tossing grenades at us, which we manage to dodge, but reminds me of something to add to the shopping list. We are cut off from the lift, but Tarash sorts out an alternate route via some internal access maintenance tunnels that let out into the lift tunnel.

We begin to climb up, but they see us and start taking potshots at us. I pin them down while Tarash clambers up to the next floor, then my climbing claws come in handy as I just scoot on up under fire. On the next floor, I lean over and manage to pick off one that is trying to climb up after us. Then it’s off to the strategic locations for this floor. We start off, but run into the third patrol. Tarash gets the first explosive into place, and then tosses one into important looking electronics on the other side of the hallway.

I manage to pick off a couple of them, but then the remaining two charge into close combat. The one after me manages to get his bayonet stuck in my carapace, which is just a tad too close for comfort. At this range, my gun will do some pretty tremendous damage, and the troopers torso just comes all apart in a gooey mess. Best. Op. Ever. Tarash picks up one of their blaster rifles and we pick up all the remaining grenades we can, becuase, well, grenades.

Tarash manages to use the butt of his rifle to knock his trooper away, and I get a shot in that blasts away most of his armor, and Tarash finishes him off with a rifle shot right to his chest. This meatbag was actually getting pretty good at violence, not such a bad master after all.
We start to head back to the lift, but a couple of the troopers have made it up to the door and are trying to get through. Also, they noticed our trick from last time and sent a guy up a floor and had him trying to climb down through the internal access tunnel. He almost picked off Tarash, but I got a lucky shot off and blew him apart. I’m going to be picking trooper out of my gears for awhile. Seriously delightful!

I pin down the troopers trying to come through the lift door while Tarash scoots up the tunnel, then I come up after. This is near the top floor, and there are some finished Tie fighters lying around and a main freight lift in the middle. He plants the last of the explosives, then we head up to the roof and extraction time.

As we get up to the roof, the remaining three troopers are still coming after us. Using the edge of the lift tunnel for cover, I peek over and assess. One is starting to climb up and the other two are right behind him. I decide to teach a tactical lesson about the value of high ground. I switch to autofire and then open fire. It was glorious. Heavy blaster bolts hitting the trooper on the rungs, then walking the fire down into the the other two was just perfect, and made a nice bloody mess at the bottom.

Tarash got a hold of Marma, who came screaming out of nowhere, and destroyed two of the four Ties that had been stationed over the plant. They took a little bit of damage, and managed to pop the remaining two before setting down to pick us up.

We loaded up quick and headed out of system. Skyron and I on guns again and picked off a couple more Ties while leaving atmo. Marma did a micro-jump to the edge of the system to catch up with Kota’s group while we settled in and repaired what damage we could to the ship. I had taken a few dings and nicks which Tarash worked his mechanical magic to repair.

As we settle into the fleet, a voice comes over the comms. Apparently the group has an old friend in the fleet, Nym and the Revenants(No, not a garage band. Don’t feel bad, I made the same mistake) and the Jedi’s habit of picking up mercenary groups to staff his little militia resulted in this clown being among them. He powers up his weapons and informs the group he intends to “vape” us. This is not a colloquialism for “say hello” or “Shake hands”. He also uses an open comm channel to accuse us of being Imperial spies. Some days, I just love my job.
Best. Team. Ever.

Personal Notes: Next time, bring grenades.

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Episode III.XVII

HK-MP5-G3-11 Memory log:

Master Kota’s battlegroup is enroute to a potentially rather large scale conflict. Per the usual Jedi bullshit, they are trying to minimize casualties, but I plan on bringing my big gun anyway.

While on the ship, we do experience some meatbag drama. We happen to overhear a Cerean pirate leader, currently “serving” for the Rebellion, planning on breaking off from the mission to steal a Star Galleon. Where I’m from treason means summary execution. Skyron, my squad leader(!), immediately offers them a worthy death, and I have to explain to Marma that those are blasters on their hips, not fancy flashlights. These traitors just shake their heads and walk off.

During our stay on the ship, Master Kota has taken Denjo and Skyron under his wing. They’ll hang out, meditate, do whatever the hell these silly Jedi do when they aren’t getting killed by the Sith Empire. Denjo has taken to letting me use him for blaster practice, which is my current source of joy since living targets are always preferable. Though it is mildly frustrating, watching so many of my bolts get deflected. I can take comfort that the bolts from my big gun, Ronder, are too big to deflect, but we do so much cloak and dagger work I rarely get to bring it along.

The strange meatbag, Marma, has taken to monitoring the meditation sessions, which I occasionally interrupt for target practice. The most bizarre thing happened one of the times I stopped by, she was talking to and fighting with a loaf of bread. I will never understand how meatbags came to dominate the galaxy like they have. I have pretty low standards as far as my expectations for meatbags go, I really am just glad most of them show up with pants on. But when you insist that a floating loaf of bread smells purple and is talking to you, there may be a problem.

Turns out we needn’t worry about whether Master Kota was aware of the pirates treason, as he had us on Double Top Secret Probation. Gweedo was planning a rather lucrative trip to pick up some Verpine Shatterguns, allowing us to fit out the ship and buff out our gear before the coming mission. Master Kota apparently has no problem letting the traitors continue to breathe, but our independent efforts to increase our battle effectiveness warranted grounding our ship and possible detention in the brig. Sigh, it’s no wonder the Jedi are losing.

However, Kota has a proposal. He knows of a verpine scientist capable of producing some seriously powerful nuclear bombs, sufficient to destroy a Star Destroyer. He has my attention. He wants us to use the cash we were going to use for the trade run to buy a bomb from this Verpine. For some reason, Gweedo has a problem with this.

We conditionally agree to this arrangement and head out. We arrive in the asteroid field(!), and start finding our way towards this scientist. Apparently, meatbags are susceptible to radiation. Unfortunately, they all survive. The strange meatbag, Marma, tries physically dodging them. Perhaps the radiation is adversely affecting the meatbags worse than I anticipated.

Or not.

We run into a Tie fighter wing, and just slip past undetected. Finally, an opportunity to kill something, and just… nothing. I get some gratification as the meatbags take some pain from the concentrated radiation.

We make it to this scientist, and she is rather well defended. The droidekas bring back some memories. Good times, good times. I help translate a little, we end up taking her along, as Gweedo really, really doesn’t want to part with cash for this deal. He would rather fill his hold with incredibly radioactive, incredibly illegal fissile material than let a few credits go. I suppose priorities are important.

We load up her raw materials, and head off to her contact for some necessary hardware. Gweedo stays with the ship, mostly so no one asks him directly for credits. We pick up the hardware, and after a little haggling, Marma convinces Denjo to pitch in and pays the man $25k now, with the promise of returned equipment and the other half later.

None of the Imperials in the loading bay notice us quietly loading up all the necessary hardware used to create massive nuclear bombs. My gun quietly weeps. Apparently someone got caught with illegal contraband and expressed their opinion of Imperial inspections with a blaster. Maybe I should have been hanging out with that group. Next time I’m going over to help out. Offer my services, maybe just start shooting Imperials, cause really, they can always just clone some more.

We take off and find Gweedo has arranged a meeting to pick up his Shatterguns. We head out to the meeting place to find two wings of Tie fighters on patrol. I saw opportunity, everyone else saw an excuse. Somehow, Marma manages to avoid this batch of potential target practice too. Sigh. We do get to listen to Gweedo’s contact getting gunned down by the Imperials, so that was nice.

While never actually engaging in the profession myself, I do have quite an appreciation for the service gun runners provide. Especially in the trade of exotic, hard to find guns that are super specific. No one’s asking around for Verpine Shatterguns on Kashyyk. By its very nature, it requires a very particular personality. Mostly amoral, my sort!, who recognize that meatbags have need of new and better ways to kill eachother all the time. If they don’t get it from you, some other enterprising sack of flesh will oblige. Very careful, and very professional though, have to be a good businessman, know when to walk away, how thin you can cut your margins, when you take a sucker for a ride. It also helps to not have stake in
whatever conflict is currently going on. Personal politics clouds judgement, hurts the bottom line. You just don’t last. Sometimes, you’re just unlucky. A military bureaucracy like the Sith Empire doesn’t appreciate competition, and besides, on a long enough timeline, every meatbags chance for survival drops to zero. Just in this particular line of work, it’s not old age that gets you.

Listening to this guys last gurgling scream over the comlink, while entertaining, forces some perspective on what it takes to survive in our galaxy. I happen to enjoy killing, but then again, that’s what I was built for, it’s ingrained in my programming. Some meatbags seem to think there may be some sort of moral quandary associated with supplying a group that goes around strategically killing the members of the established ruling political body. Historically speaking, regardless the established ruling body, there will always be a some group that disagrees sufficiently that it feels killing is warranted. Some groups, like the Huks, are just assholes. If a particular group wants killing bad enough, they’ll make it happen with or
without the gun runners, so I might as well enjoy myself. I really rather wish we’d run into some Imps that Marma couldn’t just wander past completely undetected. That would be delightful.

Gweedo really wants to make some of his precious credits, so he makes another contact with a dealer. It can be a bit tricky, but Gweedo seems to have a pretty solid grasp of how to explain things so they’ll understand.

Dealer: How do I know you’re not an Imperial?
Gweedo: You’re talking to a Rodian.
Dealer: …
Dealer: Let’s meet up, bring money.

So we get to the new contact, without killing any Ties.

Sigh.

We manage to pick up four of the shatterguns. They’re pretty, just not my style. Gweedo doesn’t like the guy, and briefly I am given hope for finally killing something. Nope, we take off and head back.

Marma manages to dodge three(3)(!) tie fighter wings. I’m flying next time, this is getting ridiculous. We make it back to Kota’s ship, and the Verpine set’s about making the bomb. Kota throws in a Jedi fighter starship, which, in my opinion, is useful exclusively for baiting Imperials at this stage of the war. Which would be fine if any of these goddamn meatbags were going to actually start a fight. I t would be nice to have someone out there to help avoid being the only target, who could lure targets into my line of fire. All the killing a team like that could accomplish positively warms my circuits.

Gweedo makes a disgusting profit from selling the guns to Kota’s quartermaster. Once we get down to Sullust and can get access to a real market, we’ll be able to get some serious upgrades for the ship. Kota promised us a Turbolaser(Yay!) emplacement if our overall mission succeeds. I plan to get upgrades that allow me to trivialize climbing and jumping, and let me see in the dark. I’ll get a hidden core backup system, good place for this log to be stored. Also, a Shield Generator and Shield Expansion Module. This will allow Gweedo someplace of comparative safety should we EVER GET TO SHOOT SOMETHING!

Marma has some weird compunction about paying the agreed upon price to the Verpine scientist for her services, a compunction not at all shared by Gweedo. Instead, Gweedo works out a deal to ferry the Verpine around the galaxy a little bit, maybe find her a nice little place where she can work without the Empire breathing down her neck. He’s just all charm and thoughtfulness.

As the battlegroup begins the gradual infiltration process, we become more involved in the actual plans for the violence. This part I care about.

We find out that part of the attack plan for Sullust entails applying explosives on a volcano and using the controlled lava flows to destroy a manufacturing complex. Apparently Tarash has a meatbag contact he’s worried about, and wants to personally oversee the placement of the explosives. Some meatbags are so particular about which ones die, not like they’ll stop reproducing of a sudden, they can be readily replaced.

We were asked to brainstorm ideas for getting the massive nuclear bomb to the Star Destroyer. We considered flying it into the SD hoping they’d just disable our ship and tractor us in, allowing us to drop off the bomb and scoot. Gweedo didn’t like any plan that entails disabling his ship.

We considered taking on a garrison manned by 100+ Imperial storm troopers in order to steal an Imperial ship that could deliver the bomb. Ok, so, mostly just me considered this one. Hope springs eternal!

We also considered and ended up settling on a plan entailing forging documents that made the bomb look like ordnance intended to be stockpiled on the Star Destroyer. We had to come up with disguises as local delivery agents and drop it off at a garrison with convincing documentation. From there, we could rely on the legendary bureaucratic precision of the Empire to get the bomb up to the Star Destroyer, then detonate it remotely.

We successfully infiltrate to Sullusts’ spaceport and everyone gets a disguise. Gweedo gets everyone an ok disguise but himself, somehow. Marma has to convince him that using purple lipstick will be…insufficient. Yes, even when dealing with Imperials. We go out and pick up my upgrades, “Gweedo, pay the man.” and get prepped for the fun part!

Personal Note: These meatbags have spent thousands of years murdering each other in ever increasingly brutal ways. I somehow fall into the one group of meatbags that manages to go weeks and weeks without killing one, single, bloody meatbag. This is ridiculous, I am just going to have to start the fights instead of waiting for these clowns to come through for me.

Also, I still miss Her.

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Episode III.XVI

HK-MP5-G3-11 Memory log:

Meatbags return from consorting with some Rebel leader they really liked. Apparently sold off a perfectly good gun, but whatever. They have decided to pay a visit to this Rahm Kota because the meatbags have trust issues. Hilariously, they get conscripted into the Rebel army and have to go through boot camp. It was rather tedious, but I do enjoy watching them suffer. They let me tag along, the running was entertaining, this Jedi Denjo is kind of a sad physical specimen, really. The Climbing wall was definitely not designed for droids, and neither was the hurdle course. They had to replace all the hurdles I broke, and their stupid climbing wall has several fist shaped holes in it now.

Funny story, towards the end of camp we were out for another run and this Denjo just wasn’t going to make it. Three months of training and this sad sack of meat can’t keep up. He just about passes out and falls to the ground, the Drill Instructor meatbag is going off, making me so glad I can control the volume on my mic input. This occasioned what is now one of my top ten favorite memories. The DI allowed a couple of us to come back and assist the poor, weak little Jedi. I got to go back and pick him up by the scruff of his neck and drag him back to a bench. I will forever treasure the image of that sweaty, gasping Jedi wriggling helplessly while I drag him along and unceremoniously dump him on a bench. I sincerely look forward to the day he has to run from some Stormtroopers, and they just run up behind him and kick his legs together. Warms my circuits so much, I’m thinking of doing that myself.

After boot camp, they were deemed worthy of being cannon fodder. Can’t argue with that assessment. We were tasked with a “clandestine” mission to retrieve a shipment of Bacta from a tightly guarded system. Basically, I had to leave my cannon on the ship :*(

We had to kidnap this captain to piggyback on his ship into the system. This meant we couldn’t kill him, apparently. That’s the problem with Jedi, they always have to do it the hard way. Denjo used some stupid Jedi trick to send the guy to bathroom where Squad Leader Skyron(!!) and I were waiting. Funny side note, I’ve had this blaster pistol for 20 years, and just now discovered it has a Stun setting. How useless! I knock him out, we start to haul the sack of meat off, and his pants drop. Skyron decides, in his infinite wisdom, to use the Force to pull them back up. I don’t mind getting a little meatbag on me, I just prefer it to be blood. And it was amusing to make the Squad Leader do it.

We drag him through the bar and back to his ship without incident. This group is pretty good at overall deception. We’ve got him tied up and they decide to use charm tactics before letting me talk to him with my blaster. Gweedo has a friendly chat with the good captain, but I make sure I’m visible and carefully making sure everything on my blaster is working. His arms would look great hanging up in my room. I may have said that out loud. The Captain comes around to our way of thinking, and we head out to pick up the Bacta. Sidenote: Why the hell doesn’t this ship have any guns? Who the hell flies around un-armed in this Universe?

We arrive in system and meet up with a bunch of Tie Fighters on escort duty. We’re in the only space-faring vessel they don’t have to be afraid of, an un-armed transport. Not nervous at all. The Captain has a brief moment when asked to punch in the codes, but calms down and puts in the correct ones. This may or may not be related to me standing immediately adjacent to him with my blaster out and flipping it from the kill setting to the stun setting and back again. We get to the port, and there’s a tense moment when we get off the ship as these clowns are on Wanted lists everywhere and we all had to don disguises. It worked, though, we got the initial paperwork signed off and the Bacta starts getting loaded on.

Apparently this captain has friends here who want to hang out, but of course, we can’t have that. Loading up goes smoothly and we’re quickly done. There’s another brief moment for the Captain when he’s out finishing up paperwork. Silly meatbags, so fond of their bureaucracies. It passes and we disembark. Apparently this Captain has a lot to live for, and appreciates my affinity for killing meatbags. The mission goes off without a hitch, sadly. Kota is pleased.

Too pleased. We get some time off, but it’s because we’re assigned to an assault mission with an entire battlegroup. We have the next couple weeks to get intel, get outfitted properly, and decide how we’re going to deal with the defenses in place. At least we should get to actually kill some meatbags this time. :)

In an unrelated note, I miss her.

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Episode III.XV
The Hidden Hand: Passenger Liner

9/11/11
Recap
From the Desk of Gweedo
Captain of The Hidden Hand
Captain’s Log
Entry 13
Today has been interesting so far… First we get pulled out of hyperspace by a comet that wasn’t on our charts. Then we find two ships floating dead in the vicinity. By now you’d think we would have learned enough to just leave them alone, especially since one of them was an Imperial vessel. But common sense eluded us yet again and we decided to board the non-Imp ship to see if anyone needed help. Long story short a few laser blasts later we find ourselves in a ship full of dead bodies, disabled droids and a bacta tank that has seen better days. The tank itself wasn’t the most interesting thing though; there was a little girl inside. Denjo sensed that she was fading quickly and could possibly die at any moment so he smashed the glass and we caught her before she got cut on the glass. Denjo lifted her onto The Hand so 2-1B and I could operate on her. After stabilizing her we let her rest for a bit while we decided our next move.
Side Note: I need to practice using this blaster. I nearly vacuumed all of us onboard the other ship.
Entry 14
The girl, Kreyalla, woke up briefly. She told us that her mother was onboard trying to escape with her. They were being pursued by a Sith Inquisitor on the Imperial ship. The mother escaped the ship on an escape pod, probably to lure the Sith away from Kreyalla. Kal made the suggestion to wipe the Imperial ship’s logs before we leave it behind, but the girl says there’s a few hundred droids on board looking to kill anything soft and fleshy that they come across. After our last encounter with just a handful of these droids no one was eager to take on a whole ship full of them. Instead we make our way to a backwater planet not far from here that an escape pod could easily make it to, the girl’s mother is most likely there. We’re towing the vessel we found Kreyalla on. Maybe we can make some quick credits on it while we’re out looking.
Entry 15
Denjo, Skyron and I took the speeder to find Kreyalla’s mother. While we were looking Tarrash, Kal, Marma and the H-1ME made some repairs to the clunker we have in tow, hoping we could actually get some credits if it’s in one piece. We found the escape pod, empty, but not for too long. Denjo sensed a presence not too far away, considering we were in a field of crops that stretched as far as the eye could see we assumed it had to be her. I quickly wished we were wrong. When we got close our speeder stopped dead in midair. Then, just as suddenly, we were being hurled to the ground. Thankfully the two Jedi on board reacted and stopped us from slamming into the ground and set us down somewhat gently. I jumped, or rather was flung from, the speeder first and I knew that this was not a woman to be trifled with. I tried to reason with her but all I got in return was a lightsaber coming at me wildly. If she hadn’t been crazed she most likely would have taken my head off right then and there. Denjo got in between us and tried even more to calm her down. Something he said just made her even more crazed though, she thought we meant to hurt Kreyalla. Skyron ignited his lightsaber but did not move to strike, if he had we might have been in a much more bloody conflict. I continued to plead with her, telling her that we meant neither herself nor Kreyalla any harm. Finally she subsided. We were on our way back to the ship when they came. A fleet jump into orbit from hyperspace. I’m not sure if they were imperial or not. It was obvious what they were after though. Since it seemed like we still had a few minutes of relative peace I told Marma over the comms to sell the other ship for whatever she could get for it. Some backwater hick tried to put up a fight over cost but in the end we got a few credits and he got one hell of a bargain on a mostly operational ship. We were pursued in the air by some fighters but Denjo used some sort of mind trick to make them think they shot us down when in reality we were speeding away. Once in port I quickly collected our credits and we made a hot lift off. We were immediately engaged with a group of fighters who were just screaming wordlessly in pursuit. There was no talking our way out of this one. Skyron took a few out with the guns and Marma did some damn fine piloting but the real hero of the fight was Ciadree, Kreyalla’s mother. She took out most of a squadron with some Jedi trick. Thanks to Kal’s quick math we were able to jump to hyperspace just after Ciadree’s miraculous save. Now we have two new passengers, a Jedi mother and daughter, who I get the feeling will make our lives a little more exciting. Like we need it.

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Episode III.XIV
Independence Informer BiMonthly
Malastarians Get More Then Bargained:

Working With The Empire’s Double-Dealing Tactics Leaves Spaceport Bloodied

An article from the Independence Informer: An elite group of Anti-Imperialists working secretly within the Holonet. As per usual, specific individual name entries [] are given generic descriptors throughout the article with only highest level security users being able to view all the names in question; to protect those fighting for freedom in an oppressed universe.

One of Malastar’s luxurious private docking bays was left in rubble today, the failed attempt of what appears to be a sith shock trooper arresting a renegade Jedi and her companions. A squad of 12 Elite Imperial troops, led by the cybernetically enhanced Guyder, surprised a human woman and her three companions as they were coming out of a ship [The Hidden Hand] inappropriately set-up for that very purpose by the Malastarian government. Property damage is currently calculated at several million credits and at least 16 people are said to be dead—including both the female Jedi and the dark apprentice sent to find her.

Information is being withheld by governments and several specific details are still being debated by our gathering agents, but the following is a fairly accurate account of what happened. The target was a renegade Jedi named Ciadree, absent from the council due to shady prior events to the Emperor’s rise to power. She was being escorted off of a merchant vessel [the Hidden Hand] by several members of its crew; a rodian [Gweedo] and his two human companions [Skyron and Tarrash].

Guyder burst into the bay with his troops, injuring Ciadree and demanding the entire ship be taken into custody. [Gweedo] spoke back and seemed to claim the ship bounty hunters cashing in a prize when the woman, incredulous and angry, struck not only at Guyder but her companions as well.

A force struggle ensues where waves of pure force get tossed between Ciadree and Guyder with the Imperial troops thrown to the ground in a brutal backlash, and then between Guyder and one of the young men [Skyron], with the end result appearing mostly negative for the Sith and his Imperial troops. Guyder’s troops recover and focused their fire on Ciadree—who blocked most of the blaster fire with her light-saber, but was unable to avoid the intense fire from a shock trooper’s flamethrower.

While [Skyron] drew forth a light-saber of his own to hammer Guyder and deflect some of the bolts headed at Ciadree, the other individual [Tarrash] retreated up the ramp and began laying ion fire at Guyder—possibly hoping to disrupt his cybernetic advantage. The rodian [Gweedo] likewise retreated, but his witty banter burst out of the ramp’s entry way, casting aspersions on Guyder’s skills that appeared to bite deep and also bolstered the confidence of [Gweedo] and his friends. Skyron’s attacks beat back several of the imperials—who spent most of their time damaging the bay with their rockets, flame and grenades while doing a surprisingly little amount of damage to their intended targets.

A couple of crew members on board the ship activated the turrets and began firing back, although the overhead turret took some time before responding and we don’t know why. They proceeded to lay a rain of fire which blasted apart the private bay and forced the majority of the storm troopers to flee—those left alive to do so, anyway.

Two young men appeared at the top of the ramp. One appeared stern and hardened, with a face that seemed too serious for his own good. He let fly a laser blast at a trooper that went wide. Later, he was said to lay covering fire for his companions, even striking from the shadows to snipe down a storm trooper just recovering from a slam.

The other man had an odd looking hand, which he pointed at the flamethrower. We believe this man to also be a force user, making this crew extremely unusual in its composition. The stormtrooper with the flamethrower flew right into a barricade and died upon impact—the brutal force of which exploded a barricade and set fire to several storm troopers behind. Further evidence of his force vocation came about when his hand ignited in a Light-saber like glow and burst through the chest of a trooper who attempted to enter the ship.

There may have been someone on board who was injured and in shock, we believe this individual was undergoing medical treatment and may not even have been aware of the fight. Further reports on this individual are heavily classified and difficult even for us to obtain.

During the midst of the crisis, the sith man levitated down from the sky to spit in the face of the jedi woman. They exchanged words and high-powered satellites were only able to pick up bits and peices. Guyder was apparently sent to kill the woman Ciadree, and remove something important to her that he said “would make a lovely plaything for my master.”

Ciadree appeared grief-stricken, allowing Guyder to surprise her with a thermal detonater she was somehow able to survive. Returning to the skies, Ciadree was lured into following Guyder when an Imperial comrade of his struck Ciadree squarely in the back with a proton missile launcher. She was completely disintegrated by the anti-vehicular weapon’s vehement blast. Angrily, the young Jedi with the saber hand on the ramp gestured once, and the proton missile launcher was lifted out of the trooper’s startled grip. Casting a baleful glare, [Denjo] walked up the ramp calling for his companions.

By this time, the turrets had badly damaged the structure and the top turret began firing at the rooftop enclosure. After taking a devastating direct blow from [Skyron]‘s flung saber , Guyder retreated to the top of the [Hidden Hand] to recover his bearings and fend off [Gweedo]’s nagging insults. As the last of the [Hidden Hand]’s crew rushed back on board, the pilot rammed the ceiling doing damage both to it and Guyder who was only barely able to avoid being completely smashed between the two.

Landing on the fire-streaked floors below, Guyder barely had time to look up before the bottom turret was once more activated and he disappeared in a haze of heavy blaster bombardment. Reports are sketchy at best, and the Malastarian government is cracking down on the entire fiasco, but agents in the field believe both Ciadree and Guyder to have been completely vaporized.

The ship blasted out of space port, Malastar demanding repayment and the ship alleging that the government got it’s come-up-pence for participating in Imperial pirating [editor edit]. The [Hidden Hand] was able to lose its pursuers and escape to [Alderaan], where several eye-witness reports have them conferencing in serious tones with [Bail Organa]. The group is holed up in a local hotel and appear engrossed in talks about their future.

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Episode III.XIII

By Gweedos_Beard, posted here by Max_Armod, in poor format, but I just want all of the entries to be in order.

From the Desk of Gweedo
Captain of The Hidden Hand
Captain’s Log

Entry 9: Corellia

This was one of the worst starts to a day that we have had in our short time together, and that’s
saying something. In the sky to greet us is none other than a karking Star Destroyer. Imperial troops
are deployed all over the planet searching for Jedi. Apparently our recent exploits have drawn some
unwanted attention. The star port is crawling with Imps. Fortunately Kal and Sexy are on board to stash
some of the less than legal goods we happen to have aboard.

The problem was, how the hell were we supposed to get off of this rock without drawing unnecessary
attention to ourselves? Kal seemed to be pushing for us to simply lay low and wait until the Imps
decided we weren’t worth their time anymore. He seemed to be motivated by something he wasn’t
telling us. That’s fine, we’re all entitled to our secrets, Jabba knows I’ve got more than my share. The
main problem I saw with laying low was that they might impound our ship. The Imps might have even
taken it if they found anything we didn’t want them to. Seeing as how we can’t exactly afford a new
ship, or break our existing one out of a Star Destroyer, I decided it would be prudent to do anything in
our power to get it off planet.

To that end we did have one advantage. They’ve never seen The Hidden Hand before! They knew most
of us by our faces, especially Tarrash since we shoved him in front of the holonet reporters. But Kal gave
me some tips on disguising our people so they would not be recognized. A plan was quickly formed and
put into place.

I picked up some booze for trading, not only would it be a good reason to have a couple of guys helping
me load cargo, but a useful commodity for turning a profit too. Tarrash and Skyron, both freshly
disguised, followed me through the checkpoint with little hassle. The Imp stopped Tarrash for a second
but one quick bark from me and we were on our way again. Marma and Denjo had a tougher time of
it. They didn’t buy Marma’s story about going off planet to watch a sunrise for her birthday. I guess
I’ve been spending too much time with that crazy woman; it seemed like a perfectly reasonable plan
coming from her. Fortunately the guard relented quickly enough when I went back and yelled at him for
stopping my chartered passengers from entering the port.

When we were all aboard we made a hasty escape off planet. Naturally things didn’t go that smoothly
for us though. As soon as we broke atmo the Star Destroyer turned our way and started to hail us. I
wasn’t about to spend a lot of time with pleasantries though. We punched it into hyperspace right
there.

Entry 10: Hyperspace

No repairs to speak of, the ship’s still in good shape from our last round of repairs. The problem is that
it can always get better. We need better maneuvering thrusters, better weapons, a better hyperspace
engine… the list goes on and on. Hopefully we can make some money off the crates of booze we picked
up. Trading could be a good revenue stream if we ever had a chance to get a good supply stream going.

Speaking of which I caught Marma trying to explain the subtleties of economics to Sexy. She was about
to give him some money so he could invest in our trading enterprise. Fortunately she realized that all
the money she was about to give him she would never see again. For some reason she thought that her
potted plants were the safer economical route to take. At least they wouldn’t take her money no matter
how hard she offered.

Entry 11: Ryloth

On Ryloth we’ve split up into a couple of groups. Tarrash and Kal tell me that we need a masked
transponder so we can slip away from anyone that might be tailing us a little easier. As far as I’m
concerned anything that can help is welcome. While they went searching for the parts Marma and I
went about selling our cargo. Denjo, Skyron and Sexy stayed aboard. Denjo and Skyron were meditating
when Marma and I left. Sexy just seemed to be cleaning his wings. Little bugger’s meticulous about
those things.

We made a nice little profit off of our cargo. Not as much as I would have when I was under Jabba’s
employ, but beggars can’t be choosers. We turned our earning right back into the business and bought
some spice. Legal stuff, nothing anyone would think twice about. (Side note: I’d like to get a Wookie.
I know it’s slavery, but having one of those brutes around could be a huge help. Not to mention they
could operate the guns of the Hand better than I can. Tarrash tells me it’s not practical though, it’s
cheaper to just stuff a droid up there. I just think it would be a nice addition to the crew, too many
humans onboard if you ask me.)

Of course as soon as we get back to the ship a familiar sight jumps into orbit. The same Sith forsaken
Star Destroyer that was trying to follow us at Corellia. It didn’t waste any time deploying TIEs and
shuttles to the ground. Neither did we. The transponder mod was installed by the time we were back
aboard and no better time for a test than right that moment. It didn’t help us avoid getting detected,
one of the TIE’s made us as soon as we took off, but they hopefully never knew it was us. Just one of the
dozens of smugglers trying to avoid an Imperial inspection. Soon enough we had a whole squadron on
us.

They tore us up pretty well. Fortunately Tarrash was able to keep us in the sky long enough for Kal to
calculate a jump out of there. Marma did some amazing piloting too. She was muttering some gibberish
that I couldn’t repeat if I tried. But she also managed to dodge a few volleys that didn’t even look like
they had gaps big enough for us to fit through. Just as another squadron was joining in the fray we had
our jump coordinates and were out of the system. Hopefully we’ll get a chance to patch The Hand up
before she sees too much more action. She’s likely to fall apart if not. Next stop Sullust.

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