Peace had finally been achieved throughout the galaxy. A neutral agreement has been put in place between the New Republic, Jedi Order, and Imperial Regiment, the three finally agreeing to coexist with each other, at arms length of, course. The peace was shaky, but for the most part, stable.
However, it seems a new fourth faction has something else in mind for the galaxy. Over the course of a few years they've strategically struck the three other factions, remaining unseen, leaving all three powers pointing their fingers at each other instead. Because of this, another Galactic War seems imminent, but after a close call, a certain high-ranking Imperial Officer thinks otherwise. On a hunch, he tracks his attackers to a remote planet in an attempt to discover what's really happening in the galaxy.
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As they traveled to the military space port multiple sirens started to go off. Cera was no stranger to begin attacked. Being located on the edge outer rim, pirates and slaver were a consents threat. As it was the leader of the outer rim defense force it had the largest military outside the Empire and Republic. It used a mix of both faction's ships but lean more toward the empire as it had better trade relations with. This had always bugged the Republic military and made it fear in all-out war that they would side with the empire.
To help combat this the Republic had devised a plan to over whelming the plants defenses before it was able to mobiles its navy forcing them to surrender before any bloodshed. However, this seemed to be unavoidable as the Republic fleet jumped out of hyperspace to a full mobilized defense force. “Sir it seems they were ready for us.” A young man said turning to the admiral in charge of Republic forces.
“Impossible.” The Tognath admiral said rubbing his chin. “There no way they cracked out coding it just a coincidence they must have been setting up for a training event or something” he seemed calm about the whole situation. “We still have them out numbered two to one they can hardly put up a fight if they truly wish to.”
“Sir communication coming from the fleet.” A coms office said form his stations.
“Put it through.” The Tognath said smiling.
“This is Admiral Cutter of the Cera defense forces you are trespassing in our air space. Please turn around now or be prepared to attacked.”
The Tognath laughed at this statement. Spoking everyone one bridge of both command ships. “Very funny Cutter but no we will not back down I order you to stand down and prepare all your ships be ready to be boarded. I have with me 56 of the finest ships in the Republic fleet and you barely have half that number. If you fight, we will destroy your pathetic fleet and hold your plant hostage until this war ends.”
Admiral Cutter face turned from shock to anger. “How dare you we have not shown any hostilities.”
“That bullshit Admiral.” He said now also angry. “A ship developed by both your nation and the Empire attacked Republic space almost two weeks ago and killed many of my people. Your people are just as guilty as the Empire. Now surrender.”
Admiral Cutter face went cold as one word came out of his mouth before the Communications was cut. “Nuts”
“Give all ships the order to attack crush that little fleet and prepare landing party. We gave them a chance now show them our power.” With that hundreds of fighter and bomber charged the enemy fleet.
On the surface Anderson watched as the laser started opening up from both fleets. A few minutes later he could see type 90 x wing guarding transports as they started to find areas to land. Ground basic guns quick started opening up to beat off the transport but there was just too many and Anderson could also tell the X-wing were forcing on knocking out the guns. As they kept going, they noticed on of the transport landing just in front of them. “O goddess they are blocking the way.” Lt. Cole.
It was only a few feet from the ground when Tiki said. “I hear them coming.”
“Hear who coming?” Lt. Cole asked confused only hear the massive transport in front of them. Just then the transport exploded as several new star fighter roared over the head.
They were sleek and small then the X-wings with two booster and wings that moved horizontally vs the vertically x-wings. It seemed to glide thought the air unlike the X-wing that seemed to use pure power to keep it air born. Banking sharply left they started splitting up into smaller groups and engaging different targets.
“Hell, yea it the Apollo fighters.” Cole yelled as he started moving to land the speeder. The crash transport had unfortunately blocked the quickest path to the space stations and travel by speeder would only be dangerous at this point.
“The military acting a lot faster than I would have expected to a sudden invasion.” Anderson said helping Tiki out of the speeder after they landed.
“Has it been a that long time since you talk to higher brass sir?” Lt. Cole asked a bit shocked at Anderson surprise.
“It has but I didn’t think it would change that much in ten years.”
“Well then about six years ago the counsel knew that war was unavoidable between the Empire and republic. In fear that we would drag into because of our connections with the Empire. Thus it was decided that would have to find a way to defend ourselves as not to relay on the help of the Empire.”
“Seems logical but that still doesn’t explain how they were ready with only at best half an hour of warning.”
“Well that because we aren't ready sir.”
This caused Anderson general surprise. “Then if that not the navy above us then what is it and where is the fleet.”
Lt. Cole smiled as he said one word. “Droids.” Just then Anderson face was filled with understanding. It was a trick so crazy that even he didn’t see it. “The plan was simple move the main fleet off plant. Second buy old and outdated ships and main them all with droids with basic programing to make it look like the fleet was still here and...”
“And if anyone attack hyperspace in form behind with our real forces catching them in a pinser attack with nowhere to go.” Anderson finished smiling. It was ingenious a plan that no one outside the military knew. “How did you keep it a secret like this for so long.” He knew his people quite but this was on a new level for even for the people of Cera.
“Everyone was sworn to secrecy and if anyone was found out talking, they were arrested. After a while and a few dozen arrest people got the message that this was going to be enforced hard.”
It had been so huss huss no one had told him till now. “Why tell me this?”
“Well sir in the next few minutes it noting going to be so secret anymore.”
Back in orbit things were looking good for the republic fleet. They had knocked out several of the heavy ships with minimal losses of their own. Even with the addictions of the Sith Fleet sudden arrival they were still in good standing. “They are beardly putting up a fight.” The Tognath admiral said smiling proudly as one of the enemy frigates exploded under the fire of his ship's guns. His landing force had easy broken past the fleet and was landing all over the capital city. His fighter where holding back the Sith thought they were playing a defense fight as they often failed back if one ship took too much damage. “Once we finished with this rable well deal with the Sith once and for all.”
Just the one of the radar officers went pile and screamed. “Sir hyperspace contact just behind us!”
“IMPOSSABLE the empire cant react that fast it only been a hour.” He yelled rushing over the officer.
“Sir they bearing the Cera logo they have a second fleet and from the looks of it there fleet made of modern Impearl star destroys and some I never seen before they ¾ our size.”
“Impossible where were they hiding them.” Just then an exposition rocked the ship.
“Sir our engines are down. Mutable hole breath troops are reporting bording party have manged to board mutable ships.”
“They are trying to take the ship defend the brige at all cost we may have been out played but we not out of the fight yet.”
Admiral Cutter looked out over the scattered republic forces as his own fleet started to slowly pick off ships as they desperately tried to turn their ships on the new force. “Sir we got contact with someone form the Sith fleet.”
“Good put me thought.” Once he was he smiled. “Hello I'm Admiral Cutter of Cera defince force. I must thank you for your support but we handle the battle form here if you could please capture the enemy commander and support our troops on the ground. Sadly they are outnumbered as most are with me and now capturing as many ships as they can.”
She didn't exactly have all that much time to argue with the other Lords of the Sith about politics. Nearly jumping down all of their throats, threatening to kill many, and even cutting off the hand of one of the Lords got her the ships and troops she needed. Nalah even was able to get a few platoons of Vanguards and Acolytes. All it cost her was burning every damn bridge she had on Korriban! Whatever, she would deal with that once she returned to Korriban. This was an emergency, and if the other Sith Lords didn't understand the urgency they wouldn't have let her go with the armada under her control now.
Three days. It was supposed to be [i three] days of gathering support and training Anderson's pet Jedi. It didn't give her a lot to work with, but she was happy with what she had now... Well, maybe 'happy' was too strong of a word. She was willing to work with what she had now considering all of the things that had just happened. The war they were trying to prevent was now entering the fully developed stage, and they were pinning it on Admiral Anderson, no doubt because he was the only one who had gotten close to the actual perpetrators. Hopefully he was having more more luck on his end, but just in case he wasn't, Nalah and her fleet were on the way to Cera, hopefully to meet him halfway. She was about to call him through the communicator when he beat her to the punch. His ears must have been burning.
[b “Calling me so soon, my Grand Admiral? I didn't think you'd be so quick to miss me.”] She says in her sultry tone, but its quickly cut off when Anderson belays as to why he's really calling her. Her teeth grit, and she points at one of the Acolytes on Communications. [b “Call all of our contacts in the Empire and get me Anderson's fleet.”] She jerks a finger at Arara. [b “Help them find out who they need to speak to!”]
Nalah puts the communicator back to her mouth. [b “Goddammit, Anderson, is there anyone in this galaxy who doesn't need an excuse to kill you? You might add me to that list at this rate!”] She turns her head when one of the Acolytes gives them an ETA on their arrival, and fortunately for Anderson they'd arrive relatively soon. They had an unused hyperspace lane from the Horuset system that would get them close to Cera with little interruptions. [b “Just hang tight, my little Admiral; we'll be arriving shortly. Be careful of who you trust, there's obviously a leak.”]
Admiral Anderson was a lot of trouble, and it seemed that as a result, he got himself in to a lot of trouble. If the Republic was this quick to find out where he was, and its only been a few hours since the Empress sent him back home, then there was clearly a leak like she said. And it'd have to be pretty high up for something like this mess to happen. Hopefully whatever Imperial defences that were in place at Cera would be enough to slow the Republic down until they got there, and she hoped to high heaven that that this 'massive Republic fleet' was just hyperbole Anderson was using... Although she had a feeling he wasn't, and she exhales in frustration after that. [b “I'm gonna kill him myself, I swear to god.”] She curses out loud to herself.
“The fleet is on their way to Cera.” Arara says, running up beside her. Nalah gives her a look as if to ask 'what else'. “And we're getting reports that we'll be arriving right when the Republic does...”
She growls at that. [b “It figures with our luck... But perhaps we can take advantage of this. My fleet will join the Imperial's stationed at Cera. We divide the Republic's fleet, sacrificing as little as we can, and then Anderson's fleet flanks them and we crush them.”]
“And do you think that will work?” Nalah giggles at that, stroking Arara's face lovingly.
[b “In theory.”] But it was seldom plans survived enemy contact. Nalah would keep that to herself and trust in her and her comrades abilities. The Republic didn't know help was on the way, and more would follow after her.
Not long after she last communicated with Anderson, they entered Cera space, and [b “Dammit!”] They were almost shot down immediately by the Republic, their ships doing evasive manoeuvres and scattering. [b “Battle stations, everyone! Wherever you see slack on the Imperial side, pick it up! Were here as support, but don't get yourselves killed; that's for later.”] She spins on her heel and motions to Arara. [b “We need to get on Cera and help Anderson. Come with me!”] And the two Force-users begin running to the docking bay.
James Anderson led his wife into the living room of their home. “So how is my little sister?” She asked giggling knew that it made him uneasy. “The Empress... I mean Anju is doing well. She worried about me.” He said sound as if he didn’t know why. “Well that good she should worry about you. That way maybe it gets thought to you. I worried 20 year and not once did you seem to care now with two of the use maybe you slow down and think a bit more about your actions.” Tiki said hanging on his arm to guild her to the couch. “Hmm” He said not looking at her. “You always been a bit reckless and never listen to what I say. Over time I gave up but I think what you need to help you slowdown is a younger woman.” Anderson sighed again as he held his head in his hands causing Tiki to laugh. “You still not use to the idea yet? Why it perfectly normal in our family's. I had three mothers and if I remember right you had four.”
“I did but still I never saw myself with anyone but you since we were married. I didn’t believe and still don’t believe I can give you both the time you deserve. One of the first things I told you was I was going to put work above all else and I have. I come home twice a year for about a month then it back to serving. I love you dearly but I can't not ignore the threats in the galaxy. Not after what happen to you.” He said looking into her pure white eyes.
“It wasn’t your fault.” Tiki sighed and holding his hand in her. “I was just in the wrong spot at the wrong time nothing you could have done.”
“If I just done my job harder, I could have found the terrorist before the attack. I could have prevented.”
Tiki gentle kissed him smiling. She got to see the only side of him the show the trouble side of him. He wasn’t the wall of emotion that most people saw him he was. “No, you couldn’t have. No one could have known that the rebels had paid off our own people to set that bomb. I just happen to be on stage when it went off early.” Sigh Anderson looked down know it was true one of the reasons he was so hard on himself was because a bomb planted to kill off leader that supported the empire had gone off and kill eleven people and almost his wife during the opening speech. The bomber was found shortly after but the damage had been done leaving many injured and his wife blind.
“Still it one of my biggest failure in my life. I let you get hurt and I will not rest until I destroy all threats to that. For you and know Anju you both are the only lights in my world.” He said taking her hand and squeezing it gently and giving her a loving smile.
“I already feel safer with just knowing you out there and I know she does to now tell me of your search so far.” She said leaning into him. For the next hour he told her of the last few weeks starting with the lead that lead him to meet the Sith that now worked with him as well as to his plan and his meeting. He even told her about his supposition of this unknow person having access to the Imperial court.
“Sounds like you dealing with some large group then just one man.” Tiki said finally specking up. “No small group could do such things.”
“That what I believed as well but where could they be hiding and how can the keep their names hidden. As well as even rumors of themselves hidden so well. It doesn’t make since.”
“Maybe the work more through a third party like the pirates you attacked. If they came on to them with tons of money and request to raid Imperil or republic ships on would assume it was the other trying to start something. It happened before no reason to think it wouldn’t happen again.”
Anderson nodded in agreement he come up with the same conclusion. Some was paying for them to attack on both party and pin it on the other. Only so many people could have that kind of money yet no he looked at showing any sigh of money disappearing. Whoever was doing this need a massive amount of money if he could find that money, he would most likely find the group.
Suddenly a knock came on the door as the butler came in. “Terribly sorry sir but a young officer is here, demanding to see you at once. I tried to tell you were busy but he wasn’t taking no as an answer.” He bowed low showing he had tried to do everything he could. Behind him a young man in a walked in hisCera uniform was a mess his hat was missing and he was carrying a arms full of data plan.
Before Anderson could even stand to meet the boy form the looks of it the boy started. “I'm so sorry Admiral Anderson but I have no one else to turn to.” His voice was heavy as if he been running. His seemed to be forgetting to breath as he tried to forces his works out. “My name is LT. Cole of the 10 scouting unit I been trying to get someone to listening to me all day I was working at my coms desk when I started getting wired noises picked up on it at first I believed it was nothing but as it kept going I decided to looked into.”
Anderson brow furrowed as he tried to see where this was going. “See at first I ran several tests to see if it was a fault in our system but when they came back green, I was like well this is wired and kept searching. Next I guessed it was back Soler interference but then noticed that our sun was on the wrong side of the plant making it impossible for it to be Soler interference the sun would have to shining light onto the dish itself. So, after I a few more check I ran the notice throw the last thing I could think of a SSTV and well you have to see it for yourself sir.” Finally, he handed Anderson one of the Data pad.
Still a bit confused he took the data pad and looked at it. Once he did it all became clear to him why this man looked so pail and out of breath. The image was a bit staticky but the words were undeniably clear. “Mission completed Rebelion hit and pulling out Phase one complete moving to step two time now. Make sure those SOSUS and Pave Paws arrays are inoperative. The Empire maybe smaller but if they are ready then they stand a good chance against the Reblics. Warroir out.”
Eyes wide in shock Anderson looked up at the boy but before he could say anything the boycountiened. “It gets worse sir it seems who ever sending all these messages is also jamming any message from leaving Empire space. Worse yet they seem to be planning to attack us next saying the prize is here.” He handed over another data pad. “I tried to warn my higher up but they wouldn't listen to me.” Anderson scowled already knowing what that prize was.
Pulling out a commlink form his belt he turned it on entering a number he knew by heart he only had to wait until a old gravels voices came on the line. “James my boy what...” Before the voice could counties Andersons cute it off.
“Lunch every ship in the fleet now and go to red alert NOW.”
“Wait what? Why would...”
Again, Anderson cut in. “If you don’t listen to what I say a lot of people will die now order thelanch.” Just then his line got cut as did the power to the building.
“What in the world?” the butler said before a blue bolt hit him in the chest and he fell to the ground. At the same time several men with blaster stormed in the door. “Hand up hand up.” Each person was armed with a blaster but one human who had a saber on his belt. His robes showed that he was a Jedi man the rest of the men were most likely part of the Republic. “James Anderson Grand Admiral of the Imperil Regiment you are under arrest and now a prisoner of war.” One on the men said.
Anderson did not move and neither did Tiki who was still seated on the couch. The only one was Cole who dropped all the data pads he was holding. “I don’t listen to thugs who enter my home and shoot my staff.” Was the only thing he said as he stepped in front of Tiki.
“Dear what going on?” Tiki asked tilting her head.
“Seems the rebels got a tip on where I would be and have come to take me away.” He explained not taking his eyes off the men.
“As well as to take back what you stole.” Once of the men said angry and hate in his eyes.
“I have stolen nothing form...”
“BULLSHIT you sick bastered where my god dam sister.” He yelled taking a step close to Anderson pointing his blaster at his chest.
“Raner stand down we need him alive.” The Jedi said stepping forward and placing his hand on his shoulder. “I know how you feel but being rash will not help us here.”
Anderson smiled as then recognized parts of the man facial features. Laughing a little he said. “O has Arara little brother come to save her form the big bad Impearl. Sorry to disappoint but she not her she on a mission. Still can't stand she picked me over you well it your fault if you hadn't alienated her so bad, she wouldn’t have come running...” He didn’t get to finish as he took a left hook to the face and fell to the ground.
“Raner.” The Jedi said pulling him back were several men pulled him back.
“You baster I’ll kill you. You brainwashed her turning her on the order and her family.” He screamed as two solider dragged him away.
“I knew bring him was a bad idea.” once of the solider said.
“James” Tiki said searching the floor for her husband and she looked in the direction of the men. “Terrorist every one of you.” She said. “Hitting an unarmed man.”
Two of the men came around and pulled Anderson to his feet. “Sorry miss it wasn’t the plan we wanted to do this peacefully.” The Jedi said bowing his head in sorrow.
“Johnson what are we going to do with the other two.” One of the solider asked the Jedi.
“Take them we can't risk them alerting anyone before we back to the shuttle.”
“Understood move it you two.” He pointed to Tiki and Cole. Tiki grabbed his left arm so he could lead her as Cole moved behind them his hand still in the air.
“Are you okay dear?” Tiki ask leaning on him as the republic troop circled around them.
“I’m fine don’t worry we be okay.” He said standing up strait.
“I'm only worry about the dogs and who going to take care of them?” A few of the troops turned to each other question no one heard or seen any dogs when they had come in.
“I wouldn’t worry about them I would be worried about anyone they find.” suddenly a wired noise would be heard coming form down the hall.
“The hell is that? It sounds like medal on wood.” One of the men said as everyone stopped and looked as two small shapes came closer. “What in the world is... SHIT DROIDEKAS.” he yelled as the two balls started to open fire on the troops.
Most dove out of the way but two were unlucky as they got gunned down. The only two who didn’t move was Anderson and Tiki who was hanging onto him arm. “You were right I had nothing to be worried about.” SHe giggled as they walked towards the droidekes. Both who were now un folded and pinning down the Jedi and his remaining men. Cole who was also on the floor quickly followed the two.
“I'm glad I got you them.” Anderson said as he lead them the front door. “Even more now with that beckon call.” He rubbed her bracelet that he had hit shortly after being punched. As they left the droids followed slowly coving the rear making sure they wouldn’t not be followed. He led them out the front door he noticed no one was around pulling out his communicator. “Seems we are still in jamming range.” Turning to Cole he asked. “Where is your speeder?”
Looking surprised he pointed to out the front gate. “They wouldn’t let me in so I parked across the street.”
“Good you will take us three the military stations. From we will board a ship and get off world.”
Both seemed surprised by this. “I can't leave you here as someone will try to get to me threw you and I will not allow that I will find a safe place for you later.” He then turned to Cole. “And you I want you decoding every message you get as well as any you already have. We finally have a way to catch our emery with his pants down I plan to use it. As of this moment now welcome to the Imperal Navy.” Cole just nodded as he quickly led the way out to his Speeder. “You two hold here for five minutes after we leave then head to the spaceport I'll be waiting.” Both droidekes.
“So, exiting I haven't listened to you work in such a long time. Plus playing with this Sith sounds like fun Twi'leks are so fun to play with.” She giggled as the entered the speeder. Anderson just shook his head knowing that he may regret them meeting but he didn’t have a choice.
He pulled out his commacater and called said Sith. “I got bad new I been made and I need help. The republic found out im on my home world and going to need help a massive rebublic fleet is headed this way so I need you to get my fleet and get them out here to help us. We are under heavy attack.
Forward outpost Delta seven was the most forward recon base of the Empire in charge of letting all the fleet know of incoming threats. It was linked to at least a dozen other smaller out post that would let the multitude for star bases know if a attack was incoming giving them time to prepare. Today was like any other day until the command picked up a strange reading. “Sand Bravo, we’re reading 70 bogeys in your sector, please verify.” A reply was short to come back. “Very funny, Stations. That a big Negative over.” The voice almost sounded as if this was some kind of joke. The Leading operator furred his borrow as one of his crew turned and said. “Yea might be a glitch in ACS modules.” Turning back to his terminal he looked again. “Sand Bravo, be advised, running diagnose to scan for Malfunction.” The replay was again short and doughtful. “The skies are clear, Stations. You got yourself some phantom dots. Over” Turning back he had some more dots show up in a new sector. “Zula x-ray 6. Sighs ins your sector of some 100 bogeys, please advise. The reply again was the same as from the last. “Negator, Stations Scope is clear. I don't know what to tell ya. Solar interference? Heavy sunspot activity today.” The man scratched his head he reported to the last station. “Sierra Delta. Uh... We may have a mionr ACS fault here do you have anything on your scope?’ This time the reply was different. “They’re everywhere!” the voice screamed. Standing up the man grabbed his headset. “Sierra Delta, repeat!” “I’m looking at star fighters all over stations one and two. How the hell did they get through” Every man and woman turned to look at the commander. “Standby! Attempting to contact the nearest unit in that sector.” After a quick few short seconds a new voice came over the coms. “I read you. This is 7th Fleet 19 Brigade Captain Lawrence acting Commander of Hunter two – one. Do you copy?” Opening all channels, he called out. “All stations, be advised - satellite surveillance has been disabled. SOSUS and Pave Paws arrays are inoperative at this time.”
Back in the Imperial Capital a runner ran into thrown room. “My Emperor the Republic as declare war and launched a full-scale invasion against us. Our early warning satellite system was somehow disabled and they already pushed several of our lines back.” The man said as the Empress in a long flowing black dress looked out one of the many palace windows. “Gather the counsel at once and tell them to meet me in the war room in ten minutes.” She said not turning to the runner. ” On your order.” He said before running. Anju was glad when her left as it prevented him from seeing her shack in fear. “Father I don’t know what to do.” She said quietly to herself as she held a neckless around her neck. “Why did you have to go I’m not ready for this.” She looked up to the stairs and wounded if Anderson was back home with Tiki. She wished she could be there with them as well. No in the middle of his nightmare that had become her life. Clinching her fist, she knew if they were her, they tell her she was being silly for worrying. Tiki would most like make fun of her at reassure her Anderson would fix everything. So, she had to just believe in him. “Please hurry James I hold down the fort for now so find these bastered and end this madness so I can have my family home and safe.” With that she turned and headed off to the war room.
The fight had lasted longer than any she had ever been a part of. Master and student fighting each other like they were mortal enemies, both having prior knowledge to each other's favourite moves, tactics, and tricks. Evolt had years of experience and training, while Nalah had her youthful strength and raw power over the Force. The two ere a perfect match, each fault covered by the other's strength and vice versa. This was a duel for the ages, and the whole of Korriban could feel it.
The fight started in the throne room, the two Sith Lord's duel effectively destroying the ornate and intricately designed amphitheatre. They then found themselves in the corridors once Nalah gained a quick advantage and force-pushed her former master through one of the reinforced walls. It didn't slow Evolt down, however, and once Nalah pressed her attack, Evolt put her on the defensive, causing her to step backwards with each strike as they weaved through the corridors. People ran at the sight of the duel, no doubt to grab the Vanguard, but those who weren't quick enough to stand clear, were cut down by either Nalah or Evolt; neither of them were concerned with casualties, nor would they let anyone get in their way until the other submitted or was defeated.
With a pirouette, Nalah leaps at Evolt, crashing down on his guard with her lightsaber, the two pushing their blades against each other to gain control. Darth Evolt snickers despite his legs beginning to fold from the pressure of Nalah's might. [+red “You always did like your flashy moves.”] And he lets up on his guard, making Nalah slam passed him in to the floor. He turns and slices low, Nalah just fast enough to move out of the way, but still earning her a glowing wound on her shoulder. He follows up with a kick, but Nalah catches his ankle with her free hand, and with a furious shout, throws him out of the corridors window.
Crashing through the glass, Evolt lands and rolls on to a lower cement bridge. He loses his footing and crashes in to one of the receptacles that held various plants and flowers, shattered the cement with his impact. He recovers quickly, which was a good thing. Looking up, despite the large Sith buildings and the window he was thrown out of, the sun's glare was in his eyes, but a growing shadow made him roll out of the way just in time. Nalah's force augmented fist crashed down on to the cement, sending a shock wave of dark power through the area, and cracked the bridge, compromising its integrity. The two fought for their footing as the bridge began to collapse, but before it could, the two of them elect to hop over the edge as the structure crumbles beneath them.
They land a few stories below on to an elevated garden across from each other. Nalah was sweating and huffing at this point, and so was Evolt. She could feel his strength waning, but hers increase as the battle waged on. This battle was about to reach its climatic end.
[b “The circle is now complete, Evolt.”] Nalah says, straightening up and adopting her usual casual demeanour. Evolt does the same, but gets in to a more ready stance, his knees buckling some. The Twi'Lek smirks slightly at that.
[+red “You were a talented student.”]
She grins again, raising her lightsaber some. [b “And now I am the master.”] With that, the both of them leap towards each other, meeting in the centre of the garden. The power behind their first impact causes the garden to blow back with gale force wind. The two continue to slug it out, both trying to find a weakness in each of their styles, but none were gaining an advantage. Darth Evolt was one of the strongest, if not the strongest Sith Lord on Korriban, and as a result, so was Nalah. Both were exceptional in the ways of the Force and in lightsaber combat.
The small war waged on, and a few had gathered. Vanguards, some Acolytes, and the other Lords of the Sith, having felt the power radiating from the struggle between the two fighting. Normally they would stop this, but they sensed they would meet their end if they interfered... It was best to watch and see the result; either a Lord of the Sith would triumph or a new one would be born.
She struck with more of her strength, Evolt's knees buckling. She strikes again with the same result, and when she goes to strike again, Evolt moves to try a move defensible position. However, Nalah's lightsaber cleaves through the double bladed lightsaber's handle, leaving a large angry and hot wound across her former master's chest. His arms drop with both halves of his lightsaber in each hand, and Nalah spins again, thrusting her ligthsaber through her master's heart. She feels his life extinguish almost immediately, a sickening satisfaction washing over her at the feeling.
She pulls her lightsaber from her master's corpse and turns to look at the crowd that had gathered, but more specifically the Lords of the Sith watching. Her yellow bloodshot eyes narrow some at them as a fury she has never quite felt before wells up inside of her. [b “I require as many ships and bodies as possible. There is a war brewing, one that threatens to consume the entire galaxy, and I would see that the Sith survive it!”]
The other Lords of the Sith murmur between each other, whispering before they turn their attention back to Nalah. One of them, Darth Andromeda, opens her mouth, but,
There was a sudden jolt, like a blaster bolt through the chest. It sent tingles through their limbs and down their spines, causing all of them to look up in to the sky. Nothing was in their atmosphere, but what they felt came from somewhere else in the galaxy. Something dastardly... And Nalah had the distinct feeling that this war that her and Anderson were trying to stop had just started.
The Warrior-class Destroyer ripped through the Republic blockade like a hot knife through butter, and with the addition of attacking TIE-fighters, it really did look like the Empire was attacking Coruscant. It looked like [i Anderson] was attacking the Republic. Of course, the Empire would know it wasn't Anderson, as they so conveniently sent him away and left it in the hands of Eragon, but this was going to be nigh impossible to explain away on the behalf of the Empire. To the Republic, they had just declared war with a Super Weapon they didn't even know existed.
Orien turns away from the scene before him, the Republic forces scrambling to get a counter attack in place as the would-be Empire rips them apart. He looks at the crew manning their stations and quickly moves to one of the Galaxy's most intelligent minds. [b [+purple “Ezo.”]] Orien addresses the Givin male tapping away on the Warrior's computers. [b [+purple “How goes the override?”]]
He finishes tapping and then looks up at Orien. “Done hours ago, Master Orien. Our override is in place, so unless they come onboard to manually override [i our] manual override, this ship belongs to us.” He turns to go back typing. “We also deactivated any traps, cantrips, tracking devices, beacons, bypasses, or backdoor's Anderson might have put in place to either take back or destroy the ship. He might be a clever man, but you can't beat mathematical algorithms.” Good, everything was swept clean like instructed then, so they could move on.
[b [+purple “Excellent, now for phase three of our plan.”]] Orien says and then looks back out towards the battle above Coruscant. [b [+purple “Retreat. They're mounting their counter-attack, so make it look like we're being overwhelmed. We'll deal with the rest of the Republic later.”]] And with that, they jump back in to hyper-space to parts unknown.
The trip to Anderson home took several hours as Cera was the last point before the Neutral Rim. It held great important to the Empire as it was there only Allie against the New Republic. Thought to most outsider it would seem that Cera was part of the empire it still had its own government and Army. It also protected most of the Neutral Rim for Slaver and pirates. Cera was a large plant compared to most and had three main Contents. The first was for mining and construing the industry that the planted lived off of. The second was the plant farming and cattle. It supplies the whole plant with food and ship of a lot to other world that couldn’t grow as much. The last Area what were most of the people lived. It was massive with tower that reached high into the sky but also an older area that only had small building and Temples.
As the shuttle jumped out of hyperspace just above orbit of the plant. Anderson had slept most of it as he often did get sleep between the paperwork the crew needs and the needs of the empire. Plus added the stress of added form this new enemy and he hadn't had a good night of sleep in weeks. Yawing he felt the ship slow down and looked out the window to the plant below. “Welcome home Admiral.” The pilot said. “We have our clearance to land shale I take us in.”
Yawning again and stretching his back he said. “Yes, I’m eager to see my wife again.” His smile for once was genuine. There were only a handful of people he trusted and one that he whole heartily trusted. That was his wife of sixteen years. “Roger Admiral I have word that you have some guest waiting for you at the landing pad.” This surprised him a bit as he told no one of his arrival. “Hmmm” Was all he said as the shuttle started it way down. It only took ten minutes to find and land at the shuttle port in the Capital city of Cera. The view for that trip was a lovely sight of mountain and valleys. Small city could barely be seen.
The Capital of Cera was called Aleham. It was a mix of what the plant was. On the upper layers the city was always busy and bussing with people and activities. The lower levels were a lot quieter and more spread out. Each home had a nice lawn and parks were spread out for rich family to enjoy. The city was the shining jewel of Cera and so were its people.
The shuttle landed with a hiss as Anderson stood up and thanked the pilot before heading for the ramp. As he exited the ramp two people waited for him near the edge of the landing pad. Both were human and wore blue uniforms of the Cera navy. The first was a male that was in the 20s he had short almost buss cut hair. He had the rank of a first lieutenant showing he was still young in the services. The second was a female with long red hair tied into a bun. Her ranked showed her to have that of a specialist. Both smiled widely apron seeing him. “UNCLE” the female yelled and ran at him wrapping him in a hug that almost knocked him down.
Laughing and returning the hug smiled. “Hello Janna. Is this how you greet all you officers?” She blushed before stepping back and giving him a crisp saluting. “Sorry uncle it just a surprise to hear that you be coming home.”
“Yes, she nearly blew my ear drum out on the phone” The man said walking up and saluting as well. “I guessing that the Emprise sent you a message then?” He asked Janna who shook her head rapidly. “It wasn’t her directly but an aid. Said that no one should be welcomed home with no one.” Nodding Anderson smile go bigger. “Yes, that is true. Did you call Tiki then?” The man shook his head. “No, I believed we should leave that as a surprise as she often dose get any.”
“Thank you Trevor I'm glad that I can count on you to keep some control over your sister.” Trevor laughed at this. “Well I hope so I spent this long doing so why should I stop. Plus, it gives me practice for my troops.” They all laughed and slowly began their way out of the space station into a heavy crowed terminal. Even though Anderson was a powerful man in the Empire he did ever hold it above his people head and often walked around like he was nothing more than a commoner. Though with his uniform most people got quickly out of his way.
“I should have changed before leaving I hate this much attention on me when I'm off work.”
“If fine uncle most people know you by face. You’re a war hero here and in the Empire so it only to be expected.” Janna said leading the way into a parking garage received for VIP. “Yes, if any one didn’t know you, I be surprised.” Trevor nodded in agreement as he unlocked a nice-looking hover car. “Where to do you need to eat first or would you like to go home first?”
“Home please it been a while and I wish greatly to see Tiki.” And that wasn’t a lie. Between work and always on being on the move he often didn’t get the chance to visit his wife often. He did at least get to talk to her once a week if he was lucky but other than that he was always busy. It was often the reason he told people why he had no children as he couldn’t give them the attentions that they should get.
“Seems far we drop you off and come back later so you can have some alone time.” Trevor said nodding much to Janna amusement. “Yes yes lot of alone time might as well come back tomorrow.” She giggled. This caused her brother to sigh and give Anderson a small chuckle. “Whatever you want to think but I like to go out to dinner tonight. The normal spot if you don’t mind setting it up.”
“Already made the call we got seat at 2000 for five.”
“Is my brother joining then?”
“Yes, dad wanted to come down but business is packed this time of year.”
“I understand that but it be nice to see him as well.” The ride to the lower lever was short as Trevor weaved in and out of traffic as they fell into small talk. After an hour the car slowed as it pulled in front of a small manner were a man in a butler outfit came out to meet them. “Master Anderson I didn’t know you were on planted or I would have got...” He was cut off my Anderson hand. “This was a last-minute idea so worry not.” He said “Please take care of these to I wish to see my wife.” The butler simple nodded as he showed the other two into the manner.
Anderson knew were Tiki would be she spent most of her time there. Walking along the out edge of the manner Anderson slowly found his way into a gardened just to the rear of the house. It was filled with a flower of all kind both from on world and off. It was a breath-taking sight alone but the one what always took is way was the woman sitting in the middle of it all. A gentle smile unlike one anyone had seen came to Anderson face. One that only one person in the galaxy knew about. Walking on the only path he made his way to the Woman. She was tall her body small long blonde hair rain down her back. She was in a smile white dress that fit well with her curves. As he got closer, she turned to look at him showing off pure white eyes. “Hello” She said her head tilted to side of the noise.
“Hello my dear.” Anderson said kneeling down next to her and gently bushing the hair from her face.
“James?” he voices filled with shock. It only lastest shorted as she pulled him into a hug then a deep kiss. “My goddess what are you doing here?”
“That a long story but just know I here for the next two day off.” He said pulling them both to their feet. “And all I plan do is spend it with you.”
“But what about the empire the news we be getting hasn’t been good.” She said now sounding a bit anger.
Laughing to put her worry aside. She was much like him in her way of thinking and knowing him. “I have already laid the group work for a plan and to keep if form being discovering I had to play the part of a man that been forced to settle down.”
Noddng she understood. “It that bad then? Is there nothing she can do to help?” Tiki asked.
“She already has by sending me home even for a bit after that it falls to me.”
“Like it should if only everyone listened to you our empires would be twice there size.”
Laughing again her took her hand. “Maybe maybe not but all I know is someone thinks he can challenge me and get aways with it.”
“Poor bastard.” Tiki giggled as she led him back inside. “Please do tell me what has happen I love to hear how you plan to crush this bug.”
After Anderson explained that she wasn't to try and convert Arara, she nodded. If it was anyone else, the nod would have been a lie, but she respected Anderson and didn't want to end up on his bad side either... And if his hold was broken over Arara, that might be problematic in its own right. So, despite her dark and manipulative ways, she would dispense with trying to corrupt their impressionable Jedi friend.
When indicated, Nalah takes the communicator from Anderson with another nod. [b “We'll be in touch, then.”] She says. [b “I'll gather as much as I can in three days and whip Arara in to shape. If anything comes up on either of our ends, we know how to reach each other.”] And it seemed with that, it was time for them to part ways. Anderson heading out for his 'vacation' and Nalah taking a ship to head back to Korriban with Arara.
It was a relatively quick jump and when they made it, Arara was still unconscious which Nalah groaned at. It meant the Twi'lek was going to have to keep carrying her around. A small price to pay, she figured, at least in the grand scheme of things. Three days wasn't going to be much time to train Arara or gather Sith forces for this Shadow War they would be fighting, but Nalah would have to do the best she could. If they were going to beat this mystery man, they would need every piece of artillery and every trick they had to do it. He was powerful in the Force, more powerful than anyone she's ever seen or felt, and he seemed to be connected enough where he could rival Anderson... This was going to be a difficult journey.
Peeling down in to Korriban's atmosphere, Nalah was greeted with the sight of home... Well, it hadn't always been her home, but it had been 'home' for many years since [i then]. And it hadn't changed much since she joined the Sith. Originally the planet was a sort of deserted waste dotted with pyramids of the Sith's of Old. But it was reformed decades ago by her the modern Siths, including her master. They had built it up in to a golden metropolis, keeping the ancient Sith pyramids and amalgamating the aesthetic with a modern one. The place was glorious to look at, and a reminder of truly how powerful and resourceful the Sith truly were. Despite their constant win/lose with the Jedi or the Republic, they were able to slice out their own paradise and keep it alive on the otherwise dead planet.
Nalah steers the small vessel towards the main palace and on to its landing strip where she was immediately met with the Sith Vanguard. However, when she hopped out with Arara on her shoulder, they stood down, taking a knee and bowing to their superior. “Lord Nalah.” They said in unison before rising.
[b “Where is my Master?”] She asks, shifting the Jedi on her shoulder and beginning to walk inside the palace. She wasn't sure if she should bring Arara to her room or with her to see Darth Evolt. Both had their own consequences, but she elected to bring Arara with her in the event the Jedi woke up. She didn't want her to lose her mind and start causing problems in the Sith capitol. She didn't think Anderson would appreciate her excuse for Arara's death being she had left her unattended.
“He is in the main chamber awaiting your return.” That didn't sound good...
[b “Perfect.”] Nalah comments and quickly moves to the main chamber. She is greeted by more of the Vanguards, but is quickly let in through the large and decorated double doors. They open slowly, and Nalah quickly moves in, seeing Evolt sitting on one of the several thrones that surrounded the room. His eyes were closed, but the second she got close enough, they opened and quickly closed in on her.
[+red “Darth Nalah... What is this that you bring me? An offering?”]
[b “Hardly. That Imperial I told you about? It turns out he has a Jedi who's mind he is in possession of. I brought her back here to train; we fought whoever is behind this and we stood no chance against them.”]
Evolt strokes his chin a little bit. [+red “I see. What else is it that you are going to do?”]
She felt like she was being needled, but perhaps since she had been out of contact for a few days, it made sense as to why he pouring it on a little thick. She still didn't appreciate it, and with what little information they had, they were making quite a few strides. [b “Anderson is going to contact me in-”]
[+red “[i Anderson]?!”] The Dark Lord of the Sith was suddenly to his feet. [+red “You never told me it was Grand Admiral Anderson you were working with.”]
She blinks at that. This was the most animated she's ever seen Evolt. [b “I did not know it was relevant. Meeting Anderson was the first time I ever heard of him... Is this going to be a problem?”]
Evolt gets a little more pensive, obviously thinking about the matter in greater detail. [+red “No, it is not. You've brought me someone close to him, and a Jedi no less; someone we can corrupt and turn on him in his most private moments. She will be the instrument of his destruction.”]
Nalah was a little awe-stricken by that. Did Darth Evolt have some kind of history with Anderson that she didn't know about? Well, clearly, considering he was already planning an assassination attempt on the man at the mention of his name. Any other time Nalah would've been more than interested to hear the story behind this or learn it by other means, and she might have even agreed to help her master in this endeavour... But not today. She couldn't betray Anderson, even on her master's orders; he was far too important to the success of their mission than whatever petty squabble happened in the past. That said, she knew that this was a situation she would have to delicately deal with since it regarded Evolt's ego... And unfortunately Nalah wasn't very good at being [i delicate].
[b “I don't think that's a good idea. We need Anderson to-”]
[+red “You speak out of turn, Darth Nalah! It wasn't a request, it was a demand.”] The room shook slightly when he raised his voice, and although that scared her when she was younger, it didn't do much for her now. Except make her blood boil. How dare he scold her like a child! After everything she's done for him! She was working with Anderson [i for] him and still didn't get the respect she deserved!
[b “I think you're losing sight of the true mission, Lord.”] She responds, but the sentence had a certain [i bite] to it, and she narrowed her eyes at her master. [b “Like it or not, we need Anderson to stop this war from happening. If war breaks out in the galaxy, we're going to be the first to pay for it.”]
[+red “I will not hear it, Nalah! If I have a chance at Anderson, I will take it. So either you can corrupt his Jedi pet,”] He retrieves his lightsaber from his belt, igniting the double-bladed weapon. [+red “Or I can.”]
And Nalah just stood there for a moment, staring up at her master. She's never seen him like this or react much like this. It made no sense to her... Could revenge be more important than their survival? That was surprisingly short-sighted for someone who was one of the Lords of the Sith. And that was something Nalah couldn't have. She wasn't about to betray Anderson for something like petty revenge; he was to important to the cause.
[+red “Have you made your decision, Nalah?”]
The young Sith looks back at Arara on the floor and then back up at Evolt. [b “I have.”] She responds, and takes her lightsaber from her belt. The blade ignites with red hot fury and she stands her ground against Evolt, bringing the blade up in front of her slightly. She knew this day would come. She was a Sith after all.
Anderson took careful note of how Nalah reacted to his statement. He wanted to see what would make her tick and what buttons he could push to make her dance to his tone should he ever need to. He was happy with the reaction almost. He had hoped for an outcome of anger. Then when he told her his true plans she calms quickly. “Simple because if I could trick you to think I was doing nothing then I can trick the rest of the empire.” He said calmly.
He did react much to her sliding over his desk onto his lap. Nore to her touch to his face. He knew she was just trying to get back at him for his trick. Still he did find it a bit enjoyable. He would never turn down such a beauty wanting to show him attention. He then watched her walk over to Arora and shrugged. “That she is but she has her uses in more was then one.” He smirked.
“You may take her with you but no pushing the dark side down on her I prefer her in the balanced state she is now. It took a lot of work to get her there and I would be very irritated if she came back to me broken. Plus, if she ever come out of her broken state it may break the hold I have over her.” He said as he stood up and started packing a few things for his trip home. “If you want her to use her force ablitly you may find that she can't control them well. Her body can't take the strain it put on her I tired many things but never one could I get her to control it so instead I trained her in almost every type of style of combat.”
Once he was mostly done with packing her moved back to his desk and pulled out a communicator, “Used this to reach me.” He said. “I will be gone three day to make the preparations I need. We will most like only be able to get two ship but they should be enough to get us started. My home world may be part of the empire but they are still their own government and leader of the out rims system so don’t thing that they will be push over.” With that he listened to a last-minute question then moved to the hanger where his shuttle awaited.
His second in command also waited him. “So, what your order?” He asked.
“I’m on vacation so I guess, you should stay out trouble.” Anderson said not looking at him as he boarded his shuttle. “And await the call.” With that the door closed and the shuttle took off.
The captain just smiled as he walked away. “All hail the Empress and her iron fist.” He smiled as he got the ship ready for dry dock.
Anderson's confidence always seemed to make Nalah smile. She had to admire the man for how determined he was to grind his enemies in to the dirt... But she knew it wouldn't be that easy with this particular enemy. Despite operating under the cover of shadow, he still sought out Nalah and Arara to simply test their abilities. He was just as confident as Anderson and it seemed the two of them had it in for each other. This galaxy wasn't big enough for the both of them
She was brought out of her thoughts when Anderson said he didn't get the support. [b “What?!”] Her body stiffened and for the first time, it would appear that Nalah was upset or angry. And it appeared she was getting more and more frustrated as Anderson told her the events of what happened on his end and that he would be returning home. [b “Those... Those impetuous [i fools]! How could they not believe any of this?! We're on the brink of war and they do nothing?!”] She was to her feet and stomping around the room now, getting more infuriated by the Admiral's lack of action and reaction to this. How could he be so calm? This was a disaster! How were the going to fight this foe without a ship or support?
As she continued to pace, cursing under her breath trying to come up with her own plan, Anderson finally spoke. Her head whirls, and although her angers fades, her breathing take a moment to calm back to normal. [b “Well why didn't you just say so?”] She asks, a tinge annoyed for leaving her to stew in her anger. But she probably should've assumed the Admiral had a plan for this; she knew he wasn't just going to let this go or let their enemy get away with what they've done. And when he asked if Nalah would joining him, she smiled her smile back, walking over to Anderson's desk. She slides over it until she's sitting on his lap, one of her lekku gently wrapping around his neck as she delicately touches his face with her hands. [b “I will follow you to the ends of the galaxy and back, Grand Admiral Anderson. You and I will crush this foe together, and we will show everyone in the galaxy how wrong they were to doubt you.”] She smiles again before abruptly standing up and walking back to the pile of Jedi unconscious on the floor.
[b “Such a delicate creature.”] She whispers, petting Arara's hair. She then looks back to the Admiral. [b “I wouldn't want to leave you without a bodyguard, but perhaps when you return home Arara can join me on Korriban. I can train her until we're prepared to follow our next lead and pull together some of my own forces. We will need all the help we can get without the support of the Empire.”]
Anderson held a smile until he heard a knock at his door. “Enter.” He said as Nalah came in caring Arara. His face instantly angered when he noticed the state of both. “What happen.” His voice was angered but his demeanor stayed one of a calm man. He listened to everything she had to say until finally his anger was gone and replaced with a evil smile. “Good he should be because I will bring his world crashing down around him. I will destroy everything he worked for and force him to watch. Then I will throw him in the deepest hoIe can find and leave him to suffer.”
He then moved to Arara and petted her hair. “She over used her powers it seemed.” He lifted her up and moved her to his bed room and placed her on his bed before returning to the office and closing the door. “Shame really all that power and no way to control it.” He sighed as he took a seat at his desk. He then answered her question. “I would like to say it went well but that would be a lie. I could not get the support I wanted.” He let that hanged in the air for a bit. “The Empress herself believes me but as she doesn't have the full power of the Empire yet she cannot grate me the troops I need without support of her counsel.” He reaching inside his desk and pulled out a data pad. “Even more so until farther notice I have been relieved of duty until the war. Being told I am tired and connecting dots that don’t extent.”
He leaned back as he started filling out something on the data pad. “I leave for home tomorrow where I will be until need again.” He said nothing else for over ten minutes letting Nalah soak in what he just said. He asked like nothing was wrong with this like everything he just said meant nothing.
Until he said. “Or that what the rest of the empire believes I will be doing. What I really plan to do is called in a favor that someone owes me and use that to keep searching until I have to proof, I need to crush this man.” He was calm again and smiling his best smile. “I assume you will be joining me?”
The fight between the two force-sensitive women didn't exactly slow him down. He was still on schedule, and if everything was going according to plan, then what he was here for would be finished now. He'd like to move more seamlessly with the populace—it'd be quicker—but the nature of his designs had to be kept secret, and therefore so did he, so Orien remained skulking in the shadows, finding his way to Admiral Anderson's shuttle pad. As if on cue, the man comes through the doors of the Imperial palace to disembark back home.
From the shadows between two fighters, Orien looked on at the Admiral as he walked back to his ship. It would be such a simple thing to put him down now and end all this funny business once and for all... But that would be a little counter-productive to his ultimate goal, and would garner him unnecessary attention, attention that the Admiral and Darth Evolt might already be giving him, but they were just two men. Things still needed to be done—which is why he was here—and if Orien was anything, he was patient. This whole plan and everything before and in between required his patience; so if Grand Admiral Anderson had to live a little longer for it to come to fruition, then he would live a little longer. But not [i too] much longer.
He was about to blend back in to the shadows to complete his business here, when suddenly Anderson stopped and began speaking. To [i him]. A slight smile quirked up underneath the grey cloak as Anderson talked. It seemed he was quite arrogant, but who was Orien to talk? That aside, it did [i amuse] him that Anderson thought he could pose a significant threat to him and his plans... But perhaps that was Orien's own arrogance talking; he knew not to underestimate his enemies. So, with that in mind, he vanishes again to complete his business on Harvest.
Finding her way back to their ship wasn't hard, but since she was carrying Arara over her shoulder, she felt like perhaps she should quicken her pace. They make it back to the ship Nalah had commandeered earlier and she quickly heads back to Anderson's ship, landing in the docking bay. Jumps out, again with Arara on her shoulder, but a few of Anderson's men get in her way, weapons raised and she rolls her eyes at them.
[b “You don't remember me? Darth Nalah?”] She asks impatiently. She shakes Arara on her shoulder. [b “I have your master's pet with me too.”] And they all look between each other.
“Let her pass.” A soldier who suddenly joins them says. “I remember you.” And Nalah smiles her smile.
[b “And I remember [i you].”] She responds. It was the wary trooper that first led her to Anderson's office. He was a handsome younger man with a few facial scars, black hair, and olive skin. [b “Kal, wasn't it?”]
“Got it in on, my lady. I'll take the two of you to Anderson. Make sure to knock this time.” And she rolls her eyes at that but follows Kal along to the office. It didn't take them long, and with a nod of appreciation, Nalah knocks this time and opens it when instructed.
[b “I think I met the person who's behind all of this.”] She tells Anderson, slowly lowering Arara to the floor. [b “He's a powerful Force-user, but I couldn't tell if he was Jedi or Sith.”] They weren't able to get a good look at him, but, [b “but with his appearance, it means we've struck a nerve and we're getting closer. It might not seem like it, but I think this guy is nervous about us...”] She steps over Arara and sits herself on Anderson's desk again, leaning over it to be closer to him, smiling thoughtfully. [b “How did you fare with your Empress. Is she going to provide us with the means to face our foe?”]
Anderson left the two force users and head down to the hanger by himself. He would have normal taken Arara with him but he needs someone to keep an eye on the Sith. As he was happy to have her help that still didn’t mean he trusted her fully. He would match rather have Arara with her then with him for something a small as talking to the Empress. Moreover, most of the time Arara put the guard on edge no matter how loyal to Anderson she was.
Boarding a shuttle, he began the log trip down the plant surface. He was hadn’t bother changing into something fancier then his normal everyday Admiral attire. He was little for formal attire outside of party and very importing meeting. He didn’t see today as that, important as he was simple asking to use what was his. Plus, he was closer the empress then most people outside the empire knew.
After about ten minutes of flight the shuttle landed with a low, his on the single landing pad next to a massive palace. It was a privet-landing pad that could only be use by a head full of people. The palace was massive as it looked like a pyramid with a flat top rather than a pointed. It ran the color of the Imperil regiment of sliver and white. A large garden surrounded the place that gave the capitals a more inviting feeling. Unlike the old one on Coruscant this one was built for the Impearl family. It held a top ten on places to see in the galaxy. Even Anderson all the place as very welcome and warm a lot different from the old Empire the ruled by power alone.
Smiling as he saw the familiar building that he spent so much time in when he first joined the Empire, he exited the shuttle. Shortly after he exited, the shuttle took off again and head off leaving Anderson alone on the pad. It wasn’t for long thought as a massive fat man rushed at him at what must have been his full speed. He was a tall man but fat man that had a thick mustache. “ANDERSON.” The man yelled as he rushed said man.
“Eragon.” Anderson nodded smiling a bit, as he watched the man come at him. Just as he looked about to run over Anderson, he stopped short huffing and puffing. “Good to see you’re doing so well pig.”
The man huffed and puffed for almost a minute before finally replaying. “And good to see that you haven’t lost your over inflated ego after your last ass kicking.” Both men just stated dagger at each other for over a few second before both smiled and shook hands.
“Good to see you. Seems you lost some weight in my time away.” Anderson said
“Yes the Miss got me on this new diet said all this weight is good for my health. I don’t believe that but it makes her happy and my men say that I seem happier as well so maybe it working.” Eragon smiled pulling Anderson along into the palace. Anderson willing followed and made little effort to pry the man arm form around his shoulder. “I am sorry about what happen to your men horrible thing what he republic did to them. I can’t image the person the pulled that of on you.”
Anderson looked head steadfast at the comment. “Your right whoever did that is no small man and thank you. That what brings me here I found some leads about who it maybe and in not the republic. No, it someone playing in the shadows.”
“Are you sure? Not that I believe you myself but a lot of the information that we gathered has pointed at the Republic. I sure the Empress would believe you but with her age she still hasn’t been given full power yet. It the council you have to prove it to and they seem hell bent on blaming the Republic.”
“I thank your confidence in my abilities and judgment. I have some proof and I pry it enough to let me move my fleet. I know the empress looks favorable on me but sadly she can't let her feeling inpacted her judgment.”
“Why wouldn’t she favor you after all you did for her father and being her fiancé after all” Eragon laughed smacking Anderson hard on the back. “When that happen, I'm sure you be able to do whatever you want.”
Sighing Anderson lowed his head. This had been something he hadn't planned for when he first started working for the Empire all those years ago. “You know I will only be married on paper and will hold no more power than that. God forbid something happen to her highness I will not take the throne. Even if I wanted it which I don’t it would go to the next in line who would be her younger brother.”
Eragon laughed as the entered into the palace and moved down several halls as the made for the throne room. “You make it sound like marring the rule of our great empire.”
“It is when I'm turning forty soon and she only a few months into being sixteen. The only reason I was picked over most was I was favored by the last empire gods may his soul rest but curse him for being a dam fool.” Anderson for the first time in several day scowled causing a deep chuckle for Eragon.
“HAHAHAHA most men would be grateful for having such Beauty bestowed on them. Plus is it not your hobbies to surround yourself by beauty.”
“Yes, it a hobby of mine but most of them are other in there mid to late 20 and all handpicked by me. I’m not say she not beautiful and I'm sure she will be ever more once she 18 but what I'm say is im a little old for her.”
“That not what the late Empire thought nor the Empress herself. They were even fine with your first wife. I sure he picked you as you would never abuse are manipulate her. Plus, your children will make fine leader one day as well.”
Growing again Anderson rubbed his temple with one of his hands. “Must you say things like that.”
“hahaha yes as it one of the few times I see your walls come down and you at a loss. I'm sure our Empire also found it funny when he announced it.” Finally, they arrived at the throne room. “But I will tease you more latter old friend for now let worry about our unknown enemy.”
Glad to drop the conversation Anderson put back on his mask as he and Ergon entered the hall. The hall was masses with two small ponds on either side of the walk way leading to a set of stairs. At the top was a throne. On it sat a woman well more of a girl dressed in fancy attire She had long brown hair with was tied back in a pony tail. Her face showed the year of youth but her expiation showed one of no nonsense. On either side of her stood at least several dozen men and woman dressed fancy outfits showing off power. Below then at the bottom of the steps stood two men talking loudly.
“And that why you should give our plant the honor of being your new forward outpost.” One of the two men said a Devaronian form the looks of him. The other was a Neimonidian but he said nothing as both waited for the Empress to reply. It seemed that they had walked in meeting. No one paid them any mind as the all watched the Empress to see what she would say.
“I hand heard both of your point and how best to use each however we only need one such station in that sector. I thank you both for coming out and presenting your case however I must go with Izniv Barakis as his point hold stronger.” She said her voice smooth and calm.
The Nimonidain bowed. “I thank you your excellence. I will send word immediately to have construction started.” With another bow he turned to leave. The Davaronian shoulder sagged a bit at losing the contract of the military space stations. I would have brought a lot of work and people to his plane but there was no point arguing about it. As he turned to leave the Empress called out.
“Tycho Felidoron just a moment I would like to as you a question.”
The Devaronian stood up straight as he turned to bow again. “Anything your grace.” he was shocked to be asked to say.
“Since we only need one military station in the area, we still need other. Your plant sit father in and as this doesn't make for a good military point it does make good for a repair yard dose it not? A place safe to rearm and repair just shorty behind the edge for the front lines.” She asked tilting her head.
The Devaronian face lite up at this. It wasn’t a battle staion but it was close and would bring even more work. “Yes your majesty and with such easy access to make such repair your ship can easy return to combat.”
“Good then see that the project is started at once. I want Arrangements ready by the end of the month.”
“Yes your Majesty I begin at once.” He nearly spirted out of the throne room to begain. Anderson watched him leave smiling.
“Was that too much.” The Empress asked turning to the members around her.
Several small whispers were exchanged before someone said. “That was handled very well my lord. You handled the situation better than we thought you would. You are you father child.” The empress nodded happy with the complement as she turned to Anderson and Eragon. Both who went to a knee and lowered their heads. “Seems the Grand Admiral Returns please tell us what you have found.”
Standing up Anderson spoke. “My lord after the recent attack I started searching for who was responsible for attack on your great empire. My search brought me to three location just on the edge of our borders at each location I found listing post meant to spy on our movement. Each were the same made from old republic tech with a hand full of blaster. Yet each time we searched we found no sigh of life. That was until our final stop. We managed to engaged and destroy an enemy warship. An old dreadnought class with cloaking tech. Sadly, the attack destroyed most of the ship and it logs however what we did manage to save was logs. Form what we can tell the ship was hired to attack anyone that found the post but with our ship heavy outclassing it stayed cloak until finally we managed to find it. The logs hit to many outer space jumps far beyond our borders.” Anderson went on for several minutes about the detail of his finding and his theory about. Once he finished detailed, he waited for a replay.
For several minutes the Council only whispered to each other about Anderson finding. Finally, one spoke up. “So, what you are saying is that we are not attack by the Republic but by some unknow enemy. One that no one has ever seen or heard about. Someone with enough military power to equal our own. However, you have no proof that they exist beside one destroy ship that points to the unknown regions of space. Yet between your own report and other reports gathered everything point at the Republic.”
When you put it like that it sounds like he was chasing ghost. Maybe that was it looked like to other people that couldn't or wouldn't look at the bigger picture. He was ready for what came next but it still angered him.
“I’m sorry Grand Admiral but with no proof I think speak for the rest of the council that you are chasing a ghost.” The other Council member nodded only leaving the Empress the only one still and quiet. “I know the loss of your men have taken a toll on you but we can not and will not let our best Admiral run off in our greatest time. The Republic grows bolder everyday they gather ships and troops on the border of the demilitarized zone. They even had the gale of accusing us of attack some blockade of there.”
For the first time the Empress spoke up her voice soft but firm. “When the last time you had a good night sleep Admiral? You hide it for everyone but I can see it. Your tired you been driving yourself nonstop since the attack. I need you as your best if war broke out. I really do wish I could send you but without the agreement of my council my hands are tied. I do not wish for the peace my father worked so hard to fall but as things are, they may not happen. So, until father notices I'm placing you on leave and placing your fleet in Eragon hands until your return.”
A sharp shock of surprise spread in the Council. They would have thought the Empress would side with Anderson and try to convince them to let go but she hadn't. Instead she grounded him until farther notice. Anderson however was only suppressed at how well she could read him. It was uncanny for anyone to do that only two people could and that was her and her father. No matter how hard he tired he couldn’t fool them.
Anderson let out a heavy defected sigh. “I understand my lord.” Turning to a shocked Eragon he looked at him and nodded. “I leave them in your capable hands.” Eragon only nodded.
“Good now that this is over I wish to have some words alone with my husband.” The empress said standing up and slowly walking down the steps to him. Eragon and the Counsel bowed knowing that this was not a request but an order. In less than a minute the hall was empty leaving only the Empress and Anderson standing alone.
The empress was a good foot and a half shorter then Anderson. Nether said anything for a long moment till finally the Empress hugged Anderson chest. “Why must you worry me so much fool.” She said her voice soft a lot different than the woman that had stand before him not long before. “First your nearly die then you run off without tell me anything other than I found something.”
Anderson sighed he kept forgetting how soft she was despite acting like the stong empress she played. She was only 16 yet she ran a whole empire. He father taken from her so early leaving her only with a hand full of people she could trust. Letting out another deep sigh he returned her embrace. “For give me Anju I did not mean to cause you such worry. I am mealy doing my job.”
“I know dam it but still you could at least let me know.” She said pulling away and looking up at him. “And know you are going back out but this time with no support.” This caused Anderson to raise a brow. “O don’t give me that. I know you better than anyone you were going to go with or without help I just made it look like I stop you so no one would question were you went.”
“Well well well I wasn’t expecting you to be so help full.” He laughed as he got a soft punch to the chest.
“Well I learned a lot time ago that once you have something that your dead set on nothing will stop you.” She sighed and looked away. “I just wished you gave me as much attention as you do your work.”
Laughing he bend down a kissed his check. “You are too good for an old soul like me. You should find someone closer your own age. I nothing more than a tool used for war I can't give you the attention you want.”
Anji just rolled her eyes. “If I had a starship for every time you said that to me I would have twice the fleet I do now. I stand by my choose and my father that you are the best suit for me.” She did smile thought. “For now, begun if you stay any longer, I may order you to say by my side.” Smiling he bowed one last time.
“Thank you, my lord. Once this is all over, I promise I take you somewhere nice as thanks for your trust.”
“I'll hold you to that.” She said not looking back but he could tell she was smiling. With that that Anderson turned an left leaving Anji by herself. “Gods I hope he right. I want your wish to become true father.”
Anderson was smiling as he walked back alone to his shuttle pad. However, as he was half way back he stopped. Someone was there hiding in the shadows. He couldn’t see them but he could feel them. He had no power in the force and was shield from his custom armor. Year for war let him know when someone was there. Anderson didn’t move he didn’t look for them he just raised his voice as he called out. “I don’t know who you are. I don’t know what you gain form starting this war but just know that I will stop you. I don’t think for a second that you can stop me. I'm coming after you and once I catch you, I watch everything you build burn. Take that to your master and tell him Grand Admiral John Anderson will be coming.” With that Anderson counited on like nothing had happen. He had everything he need now he just need to call in a few favors. Half an hour later he was back in his office smiling.
Nalah had to admit; Anderson was a pretty impressive individual. Despite insurmountable odds he had escaped whoever had attacked him and then made it his mission to destroy them. And it seemed he also wasn't going to take 'no' for an answer from The Empress either. Whatever the answer was, Anderson was going to track these people down and Nalah was more than happy to join him on this journey. She herself had vested interests in this due to her master, but Anderson's involvement made it that much more enjoyable.
The next two days were pretty uneventful considering she was stuck on a ship while in hyperspace. So Nalah trained by herself, bothered Anderson's techs, the Jedi, and even sometimes the Admiral himself. However, for the most part she spent it silently meditating to herself, trying to divine more meaning from some of the feelings and visions she's seen. Whoever it was, was clearly avoiding making too many ripples in the force, either a force-sensitive themselves or a person acutely aware that someone talented in the Force might pick something up. Either or, she didn't divine anything of interest, just more of what she's already felt from before: tiny ripples in the Force that shouldn't be there. However, she did note it got reasonably stronger on their approach to the Imperial capitol, so it was definitely something to look in to.
When they finally arrived at the Imperial capitol of Harvest, it looked like they were preparing for war, and even Anderson seemed to be a little surprised at the sight. He wondered what it could be... It couldn't be what they found at the listening post. However, she was quickly brought out of her own head when Anderson said that Nalah had command over her. The two of them made eye contact, and despite Arara's obvious discomfort and objection to the idea, she didn't object as Nalah closed in on her. Her arms slide around the Jedi's shoulders as she gets a little closer. [b “[i Anything] I tell her, huh?”] The Sith coos turning back to Anderson with her wicked grin. [b “I don't have any questions. Good luck with your meeting, Grand Admiral Anderson. I'll see what the two of us can dig up on our end.”] And with that, the two see the Admiral off and Nalah quickly begins finding her own way down to the planet, much to the disdain of the Jedi.
“I don't think he meant for us to leave the ship.” And Nalah rolls her eyes as they hop in to the small ship together.
[b “He didn't [i specify] that, Arara. Where's your sense of adventure? Wait, wait, let me guess... In Anderson's lockbox.”] And the Jedi shoots her a dirty look and she grins as they begin to head down planet-side. The Jedi was too much fun to play with.
Despite not having actual clearance to land on the planet, using the Imperial ship and her training, it was a relatively simple task to touch them down on the planet. She landed on one of the public landing pads, using the force to convince the attendant she gave him credits to land there, and moved on. The city was large, it almost reminded her of Coruscant, just with more uniformed individuals and instead of feeling like a lively and exciting place, it felt grey and more like a bored fascist regime than a republic.
Despite only ever being on Harvest once for a completely unrelated mission, Nalah wound them through the streets and alleys with grace, but in a seemingly unintelligible pattern. She was mostly quiet, sometimes walking and weaving through people with her eyes closed until...
“What are we doing?” Arara says, causing Nalah to stop and turn to look at the other woman. She places a finger to her own lips and then taps her forehead.
[b “You can't feel it?”] She asks, and before the Jedi could answer, the Sith continues to speak. [b “Let me take your restraints off, and then concentrate with me.”] And bashfully, they both take the restraints off of her, and to her surprise, Arara had a stronger connection to the Force than she had originally thought. Interesting, but not exactly helpful if it couldn't be used. [b “Now my dear Arara...”] She strokes the Jedi's face. [b “Close your eyes and [i feel].”] At the present moment, they were stopped in a back alley sandwiched between three buildings. No one else was around.
She closed her eyes and after a moment, she shakes her head. “I don't-”
[b “Shush.”] She says and closes her own eyes. [b “He's here somewhere. Trying to hide from us. Try and listen.”] Nalah tells her and the two stand there silently for a minute, and Arara must've thought Nalah was crazy, because for a moment there was nothing. It was like a stagnant pool of water.
She gasps. [i There] it was. Almost like a singular raindrop hitting the water. “I can feel him. He's... He's...”
[b “Here.”] Nalah says, turning around to the entrance of the back alley. Standing at the mouth was a man in a grey cloak and hood... But looking at him now, the ripple in the proverbial water turned in to a tidal wave. This guy was [i strong] in the Force, maybe even stronger than the two females... Only one way to truly find out.
[b [+purple “I see you've finally found me.”]] The male says from under the hood. [b [+purple “I've been waiting.”]]
[b “And why would that be? Don't you have a war to start?”]
And the man laughs at that, and it grated on her nerves. [b [+purple “Nothing of the sort. You are a Sith and the woman you are with is a Jedi, and [i both] of your masters are looking harder than anyone in to this.”]] One foot slides back, and his knees slightly bend. [b [+purple “I merely wish to test the opposition's strength.”]] And he pulls a lightsaber from his hip, but doesn't ignite it. Nalah quickly follows suit but ignites hers and nods to Arara to do the same. This guy was either extremely cocky or just as good as he projected himself to be. She was gonna go out on a limb and say it was probably the former.
[b “I'll make this quick then.”] Nalah responds, and leaps towards the man. She swings and he avoids her blade, stepping out of the way, Arara coming up from the side, and slicing, and it was also avoided. Nalah goes high and Arara goes low, the man jumping and spinning acrobatically between their blades, thrusting his legs out and kicking the two of them to the side.
Nalah recovers quickly with a growl and lunges forward, swinging wide, and the man ducks it, her lightsaber cleaving through a concrete wall. She doesn't let up, believing she has the man on the defensive, until he puts up a palm, and she's suddenly thrown back by a powerful force push.
“You're underestimating him.” Arara says and Nalah growls at that.
[b “Then we change tactics. Follow my lead.”] And she aerials off to the side, throwing her hand forward alongside Arara as they send a concentrated blast of the Force at the man in grey. However, he holds up one hand and there's an intense pressure, almost like they were pushing on a wall that was pushing back. [i What] the hell was this guy.
The two of them keep pushing, at this point trying to keep the man back, Nalah's teeth gritting as she raises another hand towards the force and to brace. “I... I can't!” And before she could say anything, Nalah's head whips to look at Arara. Her eye roll back in to her head and he drops to the floor unconscious. Without her assistance, the pressure increases and the Sith's knees begin to buckle. It didn't even seem like this guy was breaking a sweat!
[b [+purple “A valiant effort,”]] the man says as Nalah slowly comes down on one knee. [b [+purple “But ultimately useless. Tell your masters I will be waiting for them.”]] And with that, he jerks his hand forward and Nalah's side is pushed aside by the man's tidal ave of power. She goes flying back through the alley and hits a wall, cracking the concrete before sliding down and hitting the ground. She takes a second to recover, but when she does, she gets up and ignites her lightsaber expecting to fight... But when she looks around, the man in grey had disappeared and so had his signature in the Force. Not even the blip she had felt.
Quickly she runs over to Arara's unconscious form and slings her over her shoulder. She would have to find Anderson and tell him what she now knew... Someone with a powerful connection to the force was pulling the strings, and he was expecting them.
Anderson eyes never left the Nalah walked around the room his eye gone hard as it was onto business. “Arara has told me she feels much of the same in the force.” He finally said. “I have no connection to the force so I must believe you both in this matter. I know someone or something has it in for both the Imperial Regiment and the New Republic I can feel it in my bones. Attack like the one that hit my rear fleet don’t come often. The power behind it was like nothing I ever felt. I was lucky to get out as many men and ship as I did that day. It took every bit of my skill to get out alive.” He finally looked away from Nalah
“Not yet I got a message a while back that it will take a few hours to decode and put together whatever info is left. I let you know as soon a I get something. Our trip will be about two day before we get to the capital after that...” He paused for a minute as if colleting his thoughts. “First I must show any and all information I have to the Empress and the Council. Once I done with that, I hope they believe me about the unknown threat. I may hold a lot of power in the Navy but none of it means anything if I don’t have the Empress blessing. If she does give it to me, I will bring the full weight of the 12 and 9 fleets down on them. I don’t care who they are. You won't find any better ships then you can in the Empire. Plus, with the new Warrior class form Cera forces helping us I will crush them.”
Since the war had ended so long ago the Empire was only half the size Republic as it had been all they been able to hold on to. However, their combat power was stronger than even the old empire. Its troops trained to be the best they could be. The ships upgraded to newer and better models. It may be small but It out gunned the Republic fleets three to one.
“If I don’t get the blessing then I will find another way.” He turned back to her his eyes cold and dark. “I will not let my defeat go unchallenged. They hit me when I wasn't looking but I hit them back square in the face.” He was out for blood a lot of good men had died because of the attack and he wanted blood for blood.
The next two day were long with the box being harder to put back together then the tech had thought. Anderson spent most of his days in his office other working or enjoying is hobbies. Arara other entertained her master trained or angry watched Nalah. She hated every second that Nalah around often only stopping when she was ordered to sit down a be a good girl. Nalah would quickly find out how much Anderson treated her as dog on second but a woman other. Once they got to the Capital world that as called Harvest they would find in heavily guarded.
“Seems they gearing up for something.” Anderson would say standing on the bridge looking at hundreds of other ships. “Take us to the obit hold us at gird 20512005125. From there I will head down by myself.” He turned to Arara and Nalah. “Nalah you have command of Arara until I return use her to help you in your searches. She may not seem like it but she stong in the force I just keep a leash on her to keep her power form haunting her. Arara do as Nalah tells you until I return. You may remove your restraints only when she tells you to start searching and after you must put them back on.” Arara didn’t look happy one bit about being told to follow the order of the sith but couldn’t deny. Instead she only nodded. “Good now any questions?”
The trooper was a little wary of her at first, but brought Nalah to Anderson's room anyways. While she could sit and do nothing all day, it wasn't her preferred method to getting things done. At the present moment she was alone and on her way to the Imperial capitol with no inkling as to what her dear Admiral had planned with the Empress. She suspected it was some kind of report, but there was no telling how that would go with the very thin leads they had now... But it did give her time to look around on that world, perhaps divine something up herself that was perhaps missed. Anderson might be smart, but he wasn't connected to the force like she was, and that afforded her interesting ways to gather information.
Without knocking, Nalah opens the door to... [b “Well, well, well...”] She says with a heady smile. Music had abruptly stopped, and with it, so did Arara who was in quite a revealing dress. She took notice of the blaster the Admiral had drawn when he told her his rules, but was more interested in his Jedi in the precarious situation. However, when the Jedi was commanded to be silent and kneel, Nalah's smile wavered a fraction. She breezes passed Arara and over to the Admiral's desk, sitting on the edge and leaning over so she was closer to him. She giggled slightly at his remark, tracing a finger on his desk. [b “A tempting offer, Grand Admiral Anderson, but perhaps revisited at a later date. As much as I would like to indulge your pastime with your pretty Jedi, I'm not here for pleasure... For the moment, at least.”] She slides herself off the desk, walking about the room for a second, looking and learning more about the Admiral.
[b “I sensed something in the force, and there are greater things at play here than I think the both of us believe.”] Something strange was under the shadows, something she's never felt before. Whoever was behind all of this was trying to keep it hidden, but you can never fully hide the truth. [b “I haven't been able to divine much, but I believe once I meditate on it, I can find out more. I'll do this while you speak with the Empress.”] Which was a pretty good segway in to this next bit. [b “I was wondering what your plan for that was. Have your techs ripped in to the black box we found yet? I'm most interested to see whats on it.”] Obviously the name of their culprit wouldn't be on it, but any helpful clue would be nice... These strange feelings had her on edge now.
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