The Mandalorian stood on the ridge of a hill, a heavy repeating blaster hung from her shoulder and was firing a slew of bolts towards the Sith who had infiltrated their land. It seemed they were not best pleased with this as she could see one of their commanders give the order to take her out, though they would have difficulty in doing so as the bolts were endlessly flying in their direction. However, fortunately for them, the gun jammed but Raya reacted quickly, dropping it and shooting up into the air to get out of reach. By the time they were under her, her blasters were already in her hands and firing at them again.

For the most part, they were quick to defend against the attack with their lightsabers but one mistake proved to be costly to one of them who missed a bolt which struck him in the abdomen. The remaining Sith used the Force to pull the Mandalorian from the air, forcing her to land on the ground in front of him. The laser blade was dragged across her armour and she stumbled backwards to get away but tripped and landed on her back. The blade was pointed at the exposed neck between her helmet and breastplate and she breathed heavily, trying to think of a way to defend in the final vital few seconds she likely had.

However, it would be for nothing as the sound of a blaster followed by a smoking hole in the Sith’s chest answered her question. The body fell to the floor to reveal a Mandalorian in grey and purple armour standing with a blaster raised. She walked over and offered a hand to the Mandalorian on the floor. “Thanks Mom.” Raya told the woman who put an arm around her. “Come on, let’s get back to the others.” She replied before removing her arm and leading the way to the raging battle that could be heard nearby.

Once near enough, both began firing towards Sith who had their backs turned towards them, immediately taking out three before the others caught on and fought back, deflecting the blaster bolts back to their shooters but each bolt pinged off the armour at varying angles. Two more Mandalorians advanced on the Sith from behind and the pair were surrounded so it didn’t take long for the group to take them down. The battle seemed to be leaning in their favour so with a smile, Raya turned to her mother. “I think we might actually-” She was interrupted by the sound of a bolt soaring through the air which impacted against her mother’s side and the kinetic energy forced her forwards a few steps before she fell to her knees and then on her side.

“No!” Raya screamed and collapsed to her knees in front of her mother, dragging the dying woman’s body up into her arms while her hand sought for the wound. She pulled her shaking hand away, wet with blood and knew nothing could be done. “We have to go, now!” One of the other Mandalorians who had aided them in their last endeavour urged, placing a hand under Raya’s arm to pull her to her feet but she pulled herself free. “Get off me!” She replied, her voice heavy with emotion. “Mom?” She said with a shaky breath as her life began to fade from the world. “For Mandalore…” She replied with her last breath as her head rolled to the side. “For Mandalore.” Raya replied with a sob.

Another bolt struck the ground beside them, too close for comfort, but Raya remained where she was until prompted again. “Your Mother wouldn’t want you to die here. Let’s go.” He told her grimly and this time she complied and gently released her mother’s body and rose to her feet before following the man to the cover of a nearby ridge. The other Mandalorian was not without sympathy however and tried to offer the younger Mandalorian some relief. “Go back to base. I’ll cover you.” He told her. She hesitated for a moment but nodded and shot up from behind the cover a few seconds later, flying to their nearby setup where they had established a semi-safe space to treat their wounded and regroup. She landed on the ground beside their makeshift hospital and immediately fell to the ground, crying.

A nearby medic rushed over upon seeing the scene. “Are you hurt?” She asked, kneeling beside the woman. Raya shook her head. “My mother was just killed.” She replied between breaths. “Oh, I’m sorry.” The medic replied, unsure how to respond. “Wait here.” She said as she got to her feet and walked away. A few moments later, a familiar voice addressed her. “Raya?” She said. The Mandalorian looked up at the person speaking to her and immediately rose to her feet to take her into a hug. She didn’t know the woman all that well but she was Krayt’s medic so she was as good as family.

The medic wrapped her arms around the other Mandalorian and offered some words of comfort. “Her death won’t be in vain. We will win this fight.” She told her. As Raya’s gaze settled on a couple of clan members looking their way, it dawned on her what they were thinking and what the death meant for her. She was now their Alor. She was responsible for the 40 warriors of her clan and the 60 other children, teachers and medics. It was a small clan by the standards of some other clans but at 21 years old she was far from equipped to handle the leadership position, especially with far more experienced warriors in her clan who were more than double her age. She hugged the medic tighter and closed her eyes, not wanting the moment to end when she would have to face reality.
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