Wednesday, January 4, 2012, 3:28 PM
17th January 2008:
Tatooine. Somewhere for the team to lie low and perhaps find out why they've attracted so much heat. Pausing only to release their wookiee prisoner into the desert and secrete their shuttle in a hiding place - proceeding onwards in the bounty hunters' vessel - they go to (where else?) Mos Eisley. Sabat's criminal contacts have set up a meeting with someone who can help with the hiding, and so they wait around in a cantina until approached by RX-3P0 and his Jawa attendant. The crime lord promises them safe hiding place, although the arrangement of such matters will take time.
They spend the intervening moments in various ways: Sabat turns to the holonet for entertainment, Meth goes to deposit her son with relatives and Yoon-Kai thinks it a good idea to announce his name loudly in a crowded cantina. His subsequent flight from a group of men in black dusters proves sufficient to pass the time until the team regroups at 52 Bantha Street, a rather downmarket motel that is low enough to be off the radar.
They dine with RX, who has done some investigating of his own, to see who he's getting involved with. The New Jedi Order has become utterly insular, secreting itself away on Yavin IV, but not before influencing the Galactic Federation into placing the 75,000 cred bounty on our heroes.
Billatikka also has them set firmly in his sights after they humiliated him, and is pulling in many favours. Add to these the inquisitors seemingly recruiting a private army from the scum of the universe, and their enemies are apparantly going to have to queue up to have a crack at them.
Villainy being what it is, talk naturally progresses to the matter of what payment RX is going to get in return for his generous protection. Lightsabers are offered by Sabat, overruled by Daur. This leads to an argument about the nature of the Jedi, and the apparant betrayal by the New Order itself. Daur finishes the spat be Forcing Sabat outside, right into the path of five black-dustered individuals.
Meth's attempts to explain away the incident as the Ithorian's flying shoes strangely fail. Sabat accidently lets slip that he knows Kai, and the wannabe bounty-hunter clones decide to bring the heroes in, while Daur makes himself scarce.
Kai snipes men from the upper-storey of the building while Meth utilises her budding Jedi powers in getting a bantha to trample those that survive. Things take a turn for the Dark Side when she follows this up with a round of thumb-cutting, throat-slitting torture.
RX is naturally not pleased about these events happening on his property, having now to organise another safe-house, this time underground in a Jawa warren. Leaving Meth, Kai and Sabat there, he goes off in search of the missing Jedi.
Daur has returned to the ship, impounded by RX's goons. The guards are no match for the Force, giving Daur plenty of time for one final conversation with Inquisitor Ramisa. She gloats about how they themselves (our heroes, that is) led the threat to the Jedi, and the rebirth of the Sith is at hand. For a retort, he puts a lightsaber through her face.
RX is one step behind, finding Daur having commandeered a speeder-cycle to the desert and the hidden ship, leaving the planet. RX is disturbed to hear someone else listening in on his communications regarding the Jedi's coordinates.
Card games and droid pieces pass the time in the Jawa hideout, but restlessness takes pride of place soon enough. Paranoia leads everyone to consider means of escape, with Meth scavenging around for pieces of an EMP and Sabat trying to contact the outside world; independent projects rather than in cooperation.
Fearing possible betrayal by the droid, they contemplate shooting their way out of the Jawa enclave, past the various weird droids that have been set up on guard. But perhaps it won't come to that...
Sunday, January 1, 2012, 1:24 AM
From 10th January, 2008:
We open with our heroes - still with Inquisitor Ramisa captive, still with Meth Nonchal and her son tagging along for the ride, still with a protocol droid happily programmed to impersonate a deity bashing at the hyperdrive - being pursued by bounty hunters. Turns out there was some mix-up in communication, with the Galactic Federation wanting them dead for messing with that Sith holocron; the Jedi of Yavin IV apparantly concur with this judgement.
Still, it's but a single pursuit vessel following them, and Youn-Kai's piloting skills leave the hunters wanting. Gliding into an asteroid field (as much as one can glide in space), decisions are made regarding how to deal with the money-hungry killers on their collective tail. Arguments range from shooting the crap out of them, trying to shake them off to launching boarding actions. In the end, it is decided to lure (by dint of asking politely across the intercom) them aboard and then flush them out through the cargo hold into dead space. All very heroic, I'm sure you agree.
Meth looks after her son (and the important 'flush them out through the cargo hold into dead space' button) in the cockpit while the rest go to confront the two - a wookiee and a gungan - that have just crossed over from docking their ships. All seems to be going fine when the heroes refuse to meet with them and Meth bashes the button to send them into the void.
In a panic, the gungan hurridly sets to hacking into the computer systems to avoid being killed, while our assembled heroes kick open the door (as much as one can on a ship with sliding space doors) and begin shooting.
Youn-Kai trades shots with the gungan, managing to come off worse and having to be dragged into cover by Sabat. Daur starts smacking the wookiee around with the Force, prompting the big hairy one to begin dispensing grenades to all and sundry.
Back in the control room, Meth is trying to figure out how to override the gungan's 1337 haxx0rz, when the ceiling gives way and a savagely attired combat droid drops in. She beats a retreat with her son while Ka'hul confronts the robot. He's more than a little disquieted to learn that this is the notorious
bounty hunter fugitive acquisition unit EksEksUnderscoreSlashEks and his crew, though. Pitting blaster pistol against flamethrower and spinning blade arms, he sets to.
Sabat - with perhaps a touch of destiny about it - shuts the giggling gungan up with a single shot to the forehead, while Meth and Daur eventually tire the wookiee out sufficiently to leave him lying on the deck tiles.
That's when they hear the drawn-out scream of Ka'hul. Running to the scene, they find EksEksUnderscoreSlashEks standing over his corpse, and the tangled remains of B3ND3R, who had tried to assist the Jedi. Replaying the screams for kicks and taking the head as a trophy, EksEksUnderscoreSlashEks zooms out through the hull-hole he'd made, leaving our heroes to pick up the pieces. Sure, they've scored a tasty ship and seen off the attack, but at the cost of the life of a friend (and a droid that no one much cared for). They have to find somewhere to rest up, hide and plan.
So someone suggests Tatooine. Nothing can possibly go wrong now.
Friday, November 25, 2011, 6:16 AM
Daur lands amongst the scout troopers, slicing into them with his lightsaber while Ka'hul follows after and smashes them around a little with the Force. Kai and Sabat snipe at the inquisitress from the balcony.
That latter part seems to annoy her. Bringing to bear the full, despairing power of the Dark Side of the Force she attempts to crush their very will to fight under he agonising truth that, ultimately, their struggle is doomed to fail.
Boy, does she look silly when nothing happens. Her mooks call upon the Dark Side to invigorate and enrage them, but only half of them can manage it, the rest looking a little melancholic as they trade blows with the Jedi.
Kai tosses a grenade amongst them, but one surges free and leaps atop the railing of the balcony, twirling his lightsaber and dribbling obscenities. Sabat blasts him full in the chest, but still he keeps coming.
Ka'hul switches between his blaster and lightsaber, blocking the attacks of his enemies while trying to gun them down, but the darksiders seem driven by something more than human will, sustaining terrible injuries and still labouring on.
Daur is tied up in battle as well, swirling around and dodging as well as blocking the occasional blade aimed at his comrade, who is taking the greater part of the beating intended for the Jedi.
Kai has a lightsaber sunk ferociously into his torso, but the closeness does at last allow him to open up at point-blank into the darksider attacking him, finally blasting it apart. Thus freed, he and Sabat turn back to the inquisitor, only to discover that now she has a lightsaber of her own drawn, and is deflecting the best shots they can fling at her. She is also rejoicing in the support of the Force, finally weighing the two gunslingers down with the enormity of their own doom, sapping their will to fight.
Then a scout trooper hits her in the side of the head, propelled by Daur (and the Force). She takes time out of her busy schedule of picking on non-Force attuned pleebs to slice her underling apart with her lightsaber, giving Sabat and Kai enough time to (mostly) recover from their torment.
Another barrage of fire smashes down at her, beating her back, and in desperation she throws herself into combat with the Jedi, left alone as the last of her minions is finished by Ka'hul. Tiring quickly and bleeding not a little, more shots from Kai take her down.
There then follows a brief pause as Daur insists upon gathering up all the captured lightsabers, while Kai and Sabat bemoan the tyranny of the Jedi, unwilling to let the common man partake of such fun diversions and keeping all the cool laser swords to themselves. No wait, it wasn't that brief.
A search of the facility turned up more imprisoned ewoks and scout troopers, each tense and malnourished (a full analysis by Sabat pointed to them being fed a diet of meat, meat and more meat, with nothing else at all). Daur was all for executing every mother-****ing last one of them, but Ka'hul - for once speaking up for the temperate side of the Jedi philosophy - voiced the opinion that it was not their fault, that they were being possessed by some outside force.
Unable to reach a decision, it was agreed to consult with the masters of Yavin IV, wot with their great wisdom and such. All contact with that planet seemed to be blocked or otherwise inaccessible however, and even when Ka'hul tried using a third party to get through (his old buddy Fappo, now a successful holo-movie star portraying Luke Skywalker in the let-down final installment of a historical trilogy) it proved impossible. Everywhere else was fine, but the one place they needed to contact was off limits.
While that was going on, a search of the inquisitor's quarters turns up an ancient Sith tome and some lightsaber makin' equipment. Sabat even steals the drapes from her walls, replete with eeevil Sith runes. His attempts to dredge the computers for details of what had been going on prove fruitless, blocked by Sith encryption he can't even begin to comprehend.
Not forgetting their promises to Banter's widow to get her and her son off-moon, the team prepare to leave. But first, a brief interrogation of the inquisitor. She - being Inquistor Ramisa, one of a trio including formerly met Athos Boleth and the as-yet unknown Ral Parthas - admits freely to the plans she had, to return the Sith to the galaxy in possession of new bodies, as instructed by 'the holocron'.
The holocron... They all remember the device they stole from Billatikka, and decide to turn it on. Cue a bloodlit ancient Sith holo-projected in front of them, grinning insanely and willing to let them indulge in all the Dark Side know-how that she has to offer. After a queasy discussion with The Alchemist about the nature of surgical grafting, brain surgery and cannibalism, they conclude that they need a Jedi Master. From Yavin IV.
Friday, November 18, 2011, 4:55 AM
22nd November, 2007:
Sabat celebrates his successful cracking of the encrypted holonet frequency, only to come under blaster fire from a group of scout troopers surrounding the building. Noise wakens his companions, and they put up a fierce fight as the former Imperials start flinging grenades in through the windows.
After a few exchanges of banter, Daur realises that the troopers are only looking for their missing comrades, suspecting Nonchal of being behind it, as ewoks would have been less subtle. Figuring that this meshes with the ewok tale of mysterious disappearance, the Jedi calls a ceasefire (even if Crapit and Puka want a pound of flesh from the troopers) while they go over the facts, such as they are.
When Meth and her son come out to investigate the disturbance, they are informed that Banter was 'caught in the crossfire', and she doesn't think to look closely enough at the body to determine that it was an after-the-fact blaster shot from Sabat that adorns her husband's chest. A burial is arranged, and a pension proposed, while the troopers burn their own fallen.
The signal that Sabat found emanates from the far side of the forest moon, what the troopers refer to as 'site beta', a back-up generator for the Death Star's shields that hadn't fully come on-line at the time of the Battle of Endor, twenty-six years earlier. Eager to help when promised passage off a hell-world filled with ewoks, the scout troopers bundle aboard the spacecraft with our heroes while the ewoks return to their village.
The journey to site beta is without incident, save for Daur smashing Kai's martini glass, prompting B3ND3R to scrabble about to fix it while the team investigates the bunker.
Poison gas is the first trick that confronts them when they enter, but a little hot-wiring of security consoles gets them through, where a loud metallic clanking indicates the approach of an old-school Droideka, shields fully powered and laser cannons cycling up for a barrage into the group...
Youn Kai takes a single shot at the droid, hits it dead to rights in its power core and spreads its scrap across the bunker.
This gets the scout troopers much more enthusiastic about working alongside 'alien scum' (even if they do refuse to believe tales of Vader and the Emperor's deaths), and the party takes out the next droideka before it has a chance to be released from its ancient mooring on the ceiling.
Sabat hacks into the security mainframe to deactivate further security measures, also locating the lifts that lead down to a quite extensive complex beneath the earth. The troopers take one, the heroes the other. One explodes...
Kai spots the bleeping, flashing device in the corner of the car, and yanks it from the wall, only to find two wires holding it in place, one red, one blue.
Sabat correctly identifies it as a bomb, with but nine seconds remaining on the timer.
Daur raises his lightsaber, unsure of which wire to cut.
Sabat makes a judgement call: blue wire.
Burning chemicals leak from the severed pipe, scalding the floor, but prevented from mixing and detonating, they are harmless.
Ground zero, and the team piles out to find detention cells, holding ewoks and a scout trooper. Non-Imperial programming frustrates Sabat's attempts to free them all at once, but he can spring the trooper's door.
The scout trooper lurches out, takes one look at Daur before announcing "Jedi..." and raising claw-like hands.
A lightsaber bisects him and the team decide to leave the ewoks where they are, sprinting past some banners dedicated to unknown ideals and onto a walkway overlooking a parade ground.
Five scout troopers are being inspected by a female inquisitor. Best to take them now, with the element of surprise? Daur thinks so, vaulting the railing with weapon raised.
Each of the scout troopers turns and ignites their own lightsaber.
Tuesday, November 15, 2011, 1:49 AM
From 15th November, 2007:
So, Kai and Sabat are being pursued by the gathered legions of Billatikka's crime syndicate on the planet Lorta after a drug deal goes sour. Surrounded on all sides, all looks lost.
They hole up behind some crates and give a good account of themselves, blasting down several goons with their superior skills and calling comms back to the ship to ask for some Jedi back-up. Daur gets the message and proceeds to appropriate a speeder bike to swoop to their rescue, picking up some police pusruit along with it.
Ka'hul happened to be in a cantina across the street from the brawl (there are no pubs, inns or restaurants in Star Wars - they're all cantinas) and decides to join in, realising just in time that it's his friends that he was attacking. He leads them over to the repulsor speeders blocking the road, engaging in a brawl with the driver to wrest control.
Daur looks over the scene from a rooftop, the pursuing police not far behind him. He spots a gunman across the way taking careful aim at his friends and force-leaps towards him to send him falling to his death just in time.
Sabat is still knocked out by the incoming fire and has to be dragged to the speeder by Kai, who takes to the air while Ka'hul tries to get one lingering criminal from off the front, none knowing that Daur is even present. The latter then returns to his bike to follow his companions to the spaceport, even though the police are now demanding they surrender. Defence turrets around the 'port reinforce these demands, shredding the speeder so thoroughly that Kai only just manages to bring it in to land without killing all aboard. Daur returns his bike to the bemused security guards before following the rest of the team aboard the ship to get the Hell out of Dodge.
Excuses are thrown around, all mention of death stick trading kept from the Jedi, and criminal scum blamed for all that went wrong. The discovery that the strange artefact that Billatikka was carrying was a Sith holocron changes things dramatically, and the cause of the fracas is temporarily forgotten. The crime lord himself makes one last threat of violent reprisal if it is not returned, and it quickly becomes apparant that he has the law enforcement of the planet in his pocket. The team decide to put Lorta to their rudder and get back on track to Endor.
Arriving at the Forest Moon, B3ND3R proves most receptive to the idea of impersonating a deity, and their landing at the ruined Imperial shield generator bunker - now a shrine of worship for the Ewoks, who have built up a sizeable settlement around it.
A feast of celebration naturally ensues, with the party accepting the offered human flesh and brains with varied levels of enthusiasm (the booze was universally accepted, Ka'hul getting thoroughly drunk while Sabat traded away his spear and got into an argument with god-complex B3ND3R) while gathering information. The meat is from the scout troopers left behind by the Imperial defeat twenty-six years earlier, whom the Ewoks now hunt for food, and the shamans are aware of the Dark Side disturbance that the Jedi sensed, sending the best of their number out to investigate the recent spate of disappearances taking place in their tribe. Being heroes, off set our protagonists to follow his trail, using the Force to guide them. That, and a pair of Ewok scouts called Crapit and Puka.
After a mild attack and injury by some Nexu (they're native to the forest moon, I swear), they happen across a cleared area of forest, where chained Ewoks are labouring on a crop. Freeing them but finding them reluctant to leave, our heroes investigate the residence nearby, meeting with Banter Nonchal, a retired rebel commando who decided to remain on Endor to make a life for himself. His fear that the team are bounty hunters out to catch him leads to him getting stunned by a trigger-happy Ka'hul. When his wife Meth comes out to investigate, she gets much the same treatment while Daur tries to calm down his rather rowdy young son Viss, to varying degrees of success.
Sabat identifies the plants being grown as an ingredient of death stick manufacture, and Kai angrily (and somehwat hypocritically, some might say) woke Banter to lambaste him for using slave labour and trading in drugs. The 'Jeremy Kyle treatment' was interrupted by Daur walking out with Viss in tow, leading to Banter panicking and shooting the Jedi before being stunned again himself by the others.
While he is recovering from unconsciousness for the second time, the team turn to Meth for answers, with more threats and guilt trips thrown in, until she caves and relates how the need for a quiet life had led to them living on Endor, but coercion by the Roolada Syndicate and Billatikka forced them to provide for his drug empire. Further investigation of the house turns up a holo-net access console linked to a single address, which is angrily answered when turned on. Sabat settles down to hack the system and trace the location while everyone else rests, Jedi meditation being done and banter discovered to have died in his sleep. Uneasy are they who don;t want to tell meth what happened.
In dead of night, as Sabat finally cracks the encryption, blaster fire interrupts him...
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