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Unknown Regions Adventure (Past RP)

[SIZE=medium]From space, Imasi is a drab, brown little planet on the the outer edge of the Outer Rim which offers nothing in the way of invitation. The single space station in her vicinity is a drab, grey little station which offers nothing but an ungrounded base from which to unload or load goods. The single cafeteria is the kind of place that makes spacers exceedingly grateful for insta-soup mix and rehydrated two year old nerfjerk.[/SIZE]

[SIZE=medium]Imasi has no strategic import and is of little interest to anyone but the two hundred million or so sentients who happen to live there. Actually, some of them aren't all that interested either. The planet is ruled by a single Supreme Juntar Ianu Sil, who hides his own interest well, if he has it. He is a man who inherited his position and hopes to pass it on to his son in the very distant future. The more distant the better, as far as Sil is concerned. If his son, Rak Sil, has anything to say about it, he keeps this to himself.[/SIZE]

[SIZE=medium]From the surface, things aren't much more impressive, unless you happen to like tiny backwater spaceports in the middle of featureless rocky deserts. Most of the population is Human, Twi'lek, Gran and Weequay, with a good smattering of others as well. But there is fresh food, featuring the nale of course, and haassa, a kind of citrusy flavored grass that grows near the water. These go surprisingly well in kofta, a kind of local sausage made of eopie meat. Much better than insta-soup mix and rehydrated two year old nerfjerk.[/SIZE]

[SIZE=medium]The society is poor and spread thinly across the meteor-pocked surface in small settlements, which are still spreading out from the original settlement a handful of generations ago. The people live in townships near huge calderas, circular seas, created by the meteors. It is around these seas that the majority of native flora and fauna lives. The areas around the calderas support various grasses and three and four meter tall (10-13 feet) bulbous plants called busks that shelter a fungus near the roots. The fungus, called nale, is a delicacy in certain parts of the galaxy and the main reason anyone still lives on Imasi. Civilization didn't exactly take, but what society there is, is built around the harvesting, preparing and selling of nale or the supporting of the survival of those who do.[/SIZE]

[SIZE=medium]There are a handful of decent sized cities near concentrations of calderas, the largest of which, Taras, holds the only spaceport on the planet, the Supreme Juntar's residence and the headquarters of Nale, Unlimited, the trading house that controls the exportation of (you guessed it!) Nale. The fungus itself, when prepared and used properly has an earthy, smoky flavor that various species find infinitely desirable.[/SIZE]

[SIZE=medium]Most of the power used comes from a system of magma streams and geothermal vents, which has the effect of the making the days more miserable and the chill nights marginally more bearable. The architecture is low and round, adobe mostly. Some of the larger buildings in the larger cities are stone instead. Wood is at a premium and you won't find much of that at all. For some things a kind of raffia is substituted, which is made from the fronds of the busk trees.[/SIZE]

[SIZE=medium]The most visible animal life is the eopie, which the original settlers brought. Imasi proved quite to their liking, and while they're used for personal transport as often as early model speeders and such, the eopie also runs wild across the outland wastes. They live in such vast numbers that the largest predator, a two horned green reptile called an ondyt, flourishes in amazing numbers and, consequently, keeps people close to home. Travel between settlements is done primarily by sail barge.[/SIZE]

[SIZE=medium]People as a rule are poor, but what funds they have they waste like any sentient with a handful of extra credits on various vices and imported luxuries. This is a frontier world and the people that come and go, instead of sitting pat in the middle of the largest cities, are consequently armed. Whether they're consequently dangerous depends on the person they're talking to.[/SIZE]

[SIZE=medium]Y4 Day 252[/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]Covy Hillas blinked feverbright eyes at the holorecorder and tried to wrap her mind around what she wanted to say. "It's just this stuff that has been going around," she wailed in frustration. "Literally everyone seems to be coming down with it. Doc just keeps saying something is off about the whole mess, very odd, and I have the feeling I'm just not making sense at the moment. My head is killing me, still, even though I'm on painkillers and the cramps . . . . when the patients say they're hurting . . . I've never been in so much pain." Her gravelly voice was hoarse and dry.[/SIZE]

[SIZE=medium]"Doc is having to do my work and hers too, and I feel terrible about that. If she gets sick . . . and everyone is getting sick, so of course she will . . . I don't know what the hospital will even do. To be perfectly honest, I'm more than a little scared. Not that I'd tell a soul that. There are some things that a nurse simply doesn't say where a patient might hear and everyone on Imasi is a possible patient."[/SIZE]

[SIZE=medium]She sat quietly for an instant, then covered her face with a flippered hand for a moment before peering back at the recording device. "I'm going back to bed. This should be over and done with a couple of days." She hit the switch to turn it off before sitting it on the side table and laying back down. Covy Hillas had not turned her holorecroder off though. She had hit the send button and send her diary entry did. Right to her cousin, the Dean of Kant University in New Coral City. The news and the video of illness on Imasi made the rounds through the Mon Calamari medical field quickly. Very quickly.[/SIZE]

[SIZE=medium]Y4 Day 253[/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]Dr Alex RockGlen stared intently through her electrascope. She leaned back an instant, fingering her narrow chin, a thoughtful look in her rather attractive eyes, before leaning back. On the one hand, it was a rather unremarkable illness. Attendant symptomology was a rather mundane high fever, headaches and abdominal cramps. The only thing worth noting at all was that it seemed rather more viral than even a virus had a right to be, much less some sort of bacterial infection. As she probed things were getting a lot more interesting. At least, to her. Sadly, there was not a single staff member at Taras Medical Center that would share her fascination. Painkillers and fever reducers were being dispensed at an alarming rate and the planet's supply was dwindling like salt at an arcona convention. She had already purchased more, but she did have a slight concern that they would actually run out of the drugs before the new supplies arrived. She shrugged the thought off irritably. Requisitioning bored her, but someone had to do it and Covy had been ill.[/SIZE]

[SIZE=medium]Medicine did not bore her and she refocused. It wasn't at all what she was seeing that troubled her. It was what she wasn't seeing. No sample she had taken showed any reason at all, except those manufactured by the patients' own bodies, for anyone being ill. Some of her staff were dismissive of that, others seemed almost comforted. How did one become a doctor without a sense of curiosity and wonder anyway?[/SIZE]

[SIZE=medium]Alex pulled the data chip from the base of the scope, with the new sample information added to what she had already stored on the chip. Suddenly, she thought of someone who had always had that sense of wonder. Someone who might actually find the finding of nothing interesting. She'd heard his name on the GNS not 3 weeks ago, though not in connection with the field, which had struck her odd at the time. She paused a moment, then shrugged, a small smile lighting her features. Why not?[/SIZE]

[SIZE=medium]She slid the chip into the holoprojector on her desk. She'd attach the recording to her message, which Alex began, quite simply, with "Hello, Cardel."[/SIZE]

[SIZE=medium]Y4 Day 260 AM[/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]The starport is cramped and dingy and ATC rarely has a day good enough to warrant particular friendliness. The other personnel though, are always eager to welcome both importers and exporters, and pretty much any stranger who might leave a few credits in the economy before they resume whatever it was they were doing before said stranger dropped from the sky. There are a dozen or so Weequays about-- and a Twi'lek that seems to enjoy bossing the Weequay's around-- who help traders and transporters unload and load the supplies off of or onto ships in the port. The Twi'lek's name is Lian and she's long on looks and short on patience. She gets her orders from ATC and the Weequays carry them out. They're pretty good with the herd of eopies that are Lian's third love, the second being the pair of well used combat knives on her belt. Her eopies spend much of their time taking supplies to and from the port. They've made several trips of late to Taras Medical Center. It's an unprepossessing name for an unprepossessing building which also happens to be the only hospital on the planet and the domain of Dr Alex RockGlen.[/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]Y4 Day 260 noon[/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]As open air markets went the one in Taras, wasn't. There were two rows of stalls and tables, with maybe ten vendors per row. Food and rattan goods predominated, along with stonecraft. A smattering of vendors sold used wares of dubious usage. One sold pets, small lizards, tiny brightly colored fish and a large bird that told jokes in Mando'a. It was oddly empty. As people walk by the woman at the stall says, "Would you care to hold him. He's very friendly!"[/SIZE]

[SIZE=medium]She moves toward the bird, offering her forearm and as he lifts his foot to step onto her, her arm hand flings skyward, startling the creature. She moves her arm back down with an odd expression on her face, but an instant late the motion is repeated. She looks around, fear obvious in her face, before she sways and collapses.[/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]Y4 Day 261 AM[/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]Outer Rim News Service[/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]Imasi authorities authorities have instituted a planet-wide state of emergency today, in order to contain an epidemic of some unidentifiable illness. So far, no deaths have been directly attributed to the epidemic of flu-like illness which has rapidly followed by an escalation of neurological symptom. Supreme Juntar Ianu Sil claims this is a precaution only while Dr Alex RockGlen, Administrator of the only hospital on the planet, has yet to issue any statement at all. Sources have verified, however, that unusually large quantities of medical supplies have been recently imported.[/SIZE]

[SIZE=medium]"One thing seems obvious," said a Taras Medical Center employee who wishes to remain anonymous, "We aren't in any position medically to fight this. We're short equipment, meds and staff, and I for one wouldn't be surprised to see some sort of mass exodus if we can't get things under control soon."[/SIZE]
Ordo sat casually in the pilot’s seat of his YT-2000; his green Corellian Powersuit was reflecting the various screens and instruments in its polished surface. He always polished his armor when dealing with foreign officials; it gives the impression of cleanliness and professionalism, not something overly common among the galaxies various denizens. Ordo leaned back in his chair; the newly installed nerf hide seat groaned as he put his feet up on the co-pilots chair and sipped caff from his Mandalmotors mug. He always spent quiet time calculating, reviewing events and mentally noting things he could use at a later time; contacts, conversations, strange occurrences. He would log it all in his personal datapad and file it away. As he was going over a recent run in with a squad of bandits and how the leader defiantly destroyed his tent and self with a thermal detonator to hide whatever he had and avoid falling into Ordo’s hands.

A flashing light on his communications display caught his eye and forced him to sit up and check what it could be. Someone was hailing him, the signal was scrambled and it made it impossible to determine who it was or where it was coming from. Ordo knew however it could only be one person and opened the channel.
“You’re still alive I see.” Came the sultry smooth voice over the transceiver speakers. That voice pulled at emotions buried deep within Ordo’s inner person. Anger, fear, passion melded together into a confused boiling mass in the pit of his stomach. “I have a proposition for you Ordo. Do you have a moment?”

How could she be so nonchalant? Ordo thought as he contemplated how he should respond. Part of him wanted to curse the woman who had caused him more difficulty than any other creature in the galaxy. Ordo decided to keep his cold hardened persona intact, and respond as he would to a client.

“Su cuy’gar, Eff.” Ordo responded his deep voice resonating in the quiet cockpit, and sounding almost foreign in his own ears. “I work for my self now. I have no time for your games.”

“Too bad.” The woman pouted over the communications array “I did hope we could connect again, like the old days. Oh well, maybe I’ll try you back later when you’re not so…..Tied up.” With that, final thought the connection was cut leaving Ordo to stand alone struggling with the vast range of emotions that were stirred in him by the woman he only knew as Eff.

Reeling from the urge to shoot something and the sudden need to have a drink, Ordo stalked aft to the galley his booted feet ringing beautifully on the durasteel deck plating. The smell of coolant and cleaning fluids filled his nostrils as he made his way past the common area to the galley. The Galley was tidy and well kept, the small shelves were often packed full of everything from Nerfjerk and synthsoup to tihaar and caf. The selves now however were becoming bare, Ordo’s many months on this latest assignment had drained his supplies and it had been three weeks already since he had been on solid ground and even then, it was for no more than two days, one of which was spent on the bandits he had fought. Ordo opened a small cabinet hoping for his much-loved tihaar to be there, the strong clear spirit was made from succulent fruit giving it a sweet and pungent odor with an equally sweet pungent taste and other than Corellian brandy it was the strongest drink Ordo ever stocked, empty. He opened the next one, empty. As calmly as someone on the verge of violence could be he flung open cabinet after cabinet, only to find the only drink he had left was some water and shig.

“R3!” Ordo called into his comlink “Do we have any tihaar or ne’tra gal, in the cargo bay?”

The series of irritated beeps and whistles that emanated from Ordo’s comlink in response indicated that there was not and that the little droid had warned about this happening two weeks ago. Then as an after thought, the strange little astromech reminded Ordo that the droid preferred to be called ‘Crossfire’.

“Remind me to finally have your memory wiped.” Ordo countered even as the memory of the little droid’s complaint about supplies for the galley and parts in case of emergency were needed. Many of the extra parts on this last trip Ordo had used to make his Corellian power armor look more like the infamous Mandalorian Beskar’gam. “Are you still in the engineering?”

Crossfire tweeted, almost sounding confused as to why anyone could think him elsewhere.

“Find out if there are any planets nearby that we can drop at for restocking and maybe some hunting.” Ordo commanded his composure returning.
Ordo grabbed the shig off the shelf and took a seat in the crew common area while he waited for the droid to get him the information he requested. The shig was a pleasant infusion of a mildly stimulant herb and a citrus flavor called behot. Ordo liked to drink it warm, and it always reminded him of the pleasant forest of his homestead on Okyaab, but right now he could only think about the woman from his past and the strange year he was still trying to sift through.

The droid beeped and tweedled his response

“Taras.” Ordo broke in “isn’t Imasi where I got into the fight with a Weequay over leading eopies on to my ship to unload cargo.”

The droid beeped that it was and reminded him that he was almost skewered by the dock master, a beautiful Twilek woman named Lian over an ale induced comment he made to her when she visited the local cantina “the wormhole” after work. Ordo had stopped there to load up on Nale, a wonderful little fungus that was the mainstay of the planets inhabitants. Life in general on Imasi revolved around Nale, if they did not work at Nale unlimited, they worked supporting those that did. Ordo got up the memories of the dusty little planet with its huge calderas and tall plant life, came flooding back.

‘That’s just what I need’ Ordo thought ‘take a stop restock the ship, get a bit of hunting in, and be on my way. Moreover, a few crates of Nale might just be worth looking into.’

Ordo reached the cockpit just five minutes before dropping out of hyperspace, the swirling mass of blues and purples disappearing giving way to streaking stars and then finally the glorious stillness of real space. Within moments, Ordo had plotted the course to Imasi. Once again, Ordo leaned back in his luxuriant nerfhide pilot’s seat and grabbed his mug of now cold caf, sipping as the stars elongated into streaks then gave way to the familiar mass of swirling blue cloud that was hyper space….
[SIZE=medium]Y4 Day 258 AM
[SIZE=medium]“ATC this is the Jai’galaar requesting approach vectors for Taras spaceport.” Ordo called as his black YT-2000 fell into orbit
[SIZE=medium]“Cleared Jai’galaar.” The controller replied curtly, clearly not interested in customer service. [/SIZE]

[SIZE=medium]Data was streamed to Ordo’s navcomputer supplying him with up to date information about wind speed, barometric pressure, and planetary rotation to name a few, all of which was instantly calculated and displayed for Ordo on the console of the pilot station. Ordo made his way ‘Dirtside’ landing in ‘birth’ 20, which was actually not much more than a clear patch of (you guessed it) dirt separated slightly by erected barriers indicating a distinction from the other patches of dirt that filled the area. Ordo had already packed his bag with Bacta patches and snacks, he sheathed his precious Rykk blade on the left side of his belt and holstered his DT-12 on the opposite side as much for counter weight as anything. Then he grabbed his EE-3, slung it across his body, and adjusted it so he could easily reach back slightly and pull it forward if the need arose. He then reached for his Bowcaster, which he favored for hunting over the A-295.[/SIZE][SIZE=medium] Holding the weapon cross-body, muzzle down in his hands, he walked slowly down the boarding ramp of his beautiful freighter and into the sweltering heat and blinding sun of the spaceport. The sun glared off the new face shield he had fashioned for his helmet, which both blocked light shrapnel and made an unmistakably Mandalorian impression. The Weequay port workers began making their way over until one recognized Ordo and motioned for Lian to come. Lian, an intensely impatient, although fetching specimen, was even more intensely impatient after the Weequay man had the nerve to motion for her to do anything. She shouted orders to the workers who immediately scattered to the winds and then eyed Ordo. Ordo’s heart picked up slightly, unsure of whether she would remember him and if she did, whether that would be good or bad. She motioned for him to come closer, clearly needing to be recognized as ‘in-charge’. Ordo who had no such need acquiesced and moved to speaking distance. [/SIZE]

[SIZE=medium]“Cargo manifest.” She ordered reaching a gloved hand in Ordo’s direction. Which He gave without comment or complaint. After a moment of inspection, she handed back his datapad, which he took, and handed her a list of supplies and Items he was looking to have loaded including fuel and parts for the mint condition YT-2000. She accepted, mentioning that it may cost more than usual due to supply and demand, which was likely untrue but Ordo wanted to have a peaceful encounter with the woman, just in case. She informed him he was third in the queue to be loaded and he might as well get out of her spaceport and let her people do their jobs.
[SIZE=medium]“If your workers bring Eopies onto my ship,” Ordo said calmly “I’ll eat them.”
[SIZE=medium]The woman’s eyes widened at the thought of her precious beast being eaten by the rather rectangular Mandalorian pilot, and instinctively reached for one of her belt daggers. Her eyes narrowed and her muscles tensed as she stared vehemently at Ordo.
[SIZE=medium]“If you even think of touching my eopies, I’ll have your Mandalorian skin hanging above their pen.” Lian responded the venom in her tone was enough to make the most Battle-hardened warrior stand at attention. [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]Ordo lowered his Bowcaster and reached up slowly removing his helmet. He lowered the helmet, revealing his brown hair, which was cut high and tight. His skin, lightly tan from years of farming and working docks before his Mandalorian days, covered with many small scars crisscrossing his face accented by the one deep long scar running from his forehead down across his left eye to his chin. All of which gave him the look of someone accustom to threats, although his time as a Mandalorian was rather short. He looked at her stoically, his greenish grey eyes never betraying a hint of emotion or intent.[/SIZE]

[SIZE=medium]“I meant your Men.” Ordo said matter-of-factly. [/SIZE]

[SIZE=medium]The Twilek woman looked at him for a long moment, before the slight hint of a smile touched her lips.
[SIZE=medium]As Ordo replaced his helmet, Lian nodded and assured him she would be happy to let the workers know. As Ordo left to find hunting grounds outside the city, he grinned inside his helmet sure that his ship was now in good hands.
[SIZE=medium]Y4 day 261 PM
[SIZE=medium]Ordo sat at a quiet table inside the Bleak Beak, a local pit stop. The Weequay proprietor, who was liberally adorned with various bits of bones, was quite cordial with Ordo as he ordered a large glass of ale and kept an eye on the door. Ordo had been successful during his hunting excursion, and was pleased to have brought down two wild eopie bulls and one male ondyt, who wanted his kill for itself. The eopies were being processed in to various local dishes to be stored on the Jai’galaar. The ondyt was cleaned and skinned; the head was now being placed in Ordo’s cargo bay on the bulkhead. Ordo was content and glad for the uneventful trip, of hunting and enjoying the quiet life on the outer rim. However, he knew the time had come to make for Mandalore sector and his next assignment. Many people came and went while Ordo sat and thought about his appointment at Nale Unlimited, in the morning. A blue-skinned Chiss came in and went straight to the backroom, which triggered a voice in the back of Ordo’s mind that said ‘backroom meeting, one Chiss and unknown entity, catalogue just in case.’ Ordo finished the sweet dark ale and ordered another. After a few minutes the Weequay proprietor returned with Ordo’s drink on a tray, as he lifted it, the glass slipped crashing on the rattan tabletop, and sending warm dark ale in Ordo’s direction and spraying his armored chest. Ordo eyed then being suspiciously.
[SIZE=medium]“Sorry," he said gruffly as he tried to pick up the glass and failed. An instant later, the tray slipped from his hand. The Weequay man swayed looking both confused and worried, he was just barely able to catch and stablize himself on the table.
[SIZE=medium]“Mate,” Ordo said kindly, “you better sit down, and call a doc.”[/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]The Weequay asserted in as few words as possible that he was fine. However, as they were leaving Ordo herd something about reporting the incident to a doctor. Ordo looked at the Weequay man who only sat for a second seemingly waiting until the Medics left then pulled himself to his feet and continued his work. After he gave everyone a free round of whatever they had been drinking, Ordo watched out of the corner of his eye as the man made his way back behind the bar. The tough Weequay man then began rummaging beneath the counter for something. Ordo tensed inwardly not knowing if the man was looking for a blaster of just some lost item, in his experience either one could be expected on the rim. [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]Ordo continued the conversation with Uta about hunting. The weequay man paused and looked at Ordo and Uta “You want guide?" he grunts out as he realizes that Ordo and another patron are talking of hunting. Ordo was taken by surprise at the Weequay’s voice and watched interestedly as he again fished around behind the counter before coming up with a holocard. "Best," The Barman grunted as he shoved the card across to him. [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium] Ordo wondered if the Weequay man would rather be hunting with them or tending the bar, as the most vocal he had been was after hearing their conversation. He could just have been showing general interest in his customers, but the bits of bone ornamenting his tunic allowed Ordo to picture the man in a much different setting crouched and waiting for his prey or stalking the desert looking for some stealthy beast. He was looking at the card when his datapad vibrated indicating a message had been received. Ordo took out his ‘Pad hoping it wasn’t ‘crossfire’ with bad news. To his surprise it turned out to be just the company he had hoped to have an audience with in the morning. The message read:[/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]‘Greetings Captain Ordo;[/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium] As you may know, Nale, Unlimited is the sole source of the much sought after Nale, along with all derivative products like seasonings and oils. We strive to find the best ways to get our unusual and highly marketable product out into the galaxy at large. A small part of that is getting the help of and helping in return, independent pilots and small business owners such as yourself.[/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium] In an effort to get surplus stock of Nale and Nale derivative products off planet so that we may continue business as usual, we are offering a buy two get one sale on each crate of product purchased by independent pilots and small business owners. I hope you will drop by our sales office to take advantage of this unprecedented offer before leaving our fine planet.[/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]VP of Sales and Contracts’[/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium] How strange Ordo thought. [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]One. They knew my name and my data pad information. This says they are well informed, [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]Two. They are willing to offer a deal to get Nale ‘off planet’ so they can ‘continue business as usual’. [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]Three. The VP is a Chiss staying on a desert world. Ordo was calculating scenarios before he could even catch himself, running through the list of possibilities. Political or internal issues he guessed, as big business and small government usually meant wrinkles in the socio-economic fabric of the planet. Ordo would have to check his theory tomorrow at the meeting.[/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium] [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]Ordo looked up to find the Weequay man once again rummaging beneath the counter before stopping and letting out a triumphant grunt. The Barman stood and slapped a clear liter genuine glass liter bottle onto the counter between Ordo and another patron. The Weequay wiped away the thick layer of dust from the bottle with a hand revealing the clear unmistakable liquid inside. “Tihaar,” The Weequay pronounced obviously satisfied ”Varos” The Weequay man’s eyes gleamed slightly as if either remembering days gone by or just the triumph of having the one drink Ordo and Uta had been speaking of and the knowledge that he was likely the only one on planet to carry it. Ordo wondered if he kept it just in case. Ordo didn’t have to ask the Barman produced to glasses for the Mandalorians. Ordo looked at the man “Oya, Manda Ner Vod.” he said in his deep booming voice as he lifted his glass taking a drink. [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium] [/SIZE][SIZE=medium] Ordo felt that the Barman saw many things like the girl running in and grabbing a spacer, or men being lead straight to that mysterious back room, and Ordo hoped to be informed of anything the Man thought might grab his interest. [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium] As Ordo prepared to leave, checking his gear and ensuring everything was ready and accessible when the man said to him, "Ret'urcye mhi ner vod." Ordo smiled, glad to hear Mando’a so much in one day and also at the phrase which meant, ‘maybe we’ll meet again my brother’ which was very true for them. They never knew when they would walk through the next door and be sent straight to the Manda. Then Ordo put his helmet back on before he replied "Oyayc ra kyrayc, ner vod. Ret'urcye." ‘Dead or alive, my Brother. Maybe we’ll meet again’ with that Ordo picked up his Bowcaster and walked out the door and onto the Imasi streets. He watched the people for a moment thinking how they seemed so tense so concerned, he filed the thought turning up the street toward the Starport and headed for his Freighter, to check his gear and be ready to go. [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium] Ordo clanged up the boarding ramp. Everything appeared in order, the ship even smelled just as he left it. He walked to his room which was actually the smallest on board since he slept most nights in the cockpit, ‘but tonight the cot,’ He thought to himself as he entered the small room. He laid his weapons in order based on size next to his cot before removing his pack and checking the contents were in order. He next took off his helmet inspecting its seals and checking the internal electronics, then giving it a brief wipe with a rag before he placed it at the head of the cot. Then he went through the process of removing the armor that he rarely took off, but he wanted to be sure it was working well and was clean for tomorrow. He took the components of his armor and laid them in a pile beside the small bed He stood and removed his jumpsuit a pair of lite pants, He moved the few feet to the mirror and looked at his worn face, remembering clearly how it used to be smooth and free of blemishes. Now though he looked as if a rancor had tried to have him as a snack and gave up because he was to tough to chew. The Scars on his face were mostly small from dozens of hunts and fights where he took chances out of a desire to prove to himself that if he had been there he would not have lost her, he would have been strong enough to protect her save her. [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]‘Her’ he thought ‘Bria’[/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium] They were about to be married back on Corellia. He had taken a job that would pay off his ship and start their own business as independent shippers. She had been working as a mechanic at the garage where he rented an upstairs loft, so she could pay off a debt her brother had left her when he died. The starport shipping supervisor and some Corellian security officers who wanted his precious cargo had betrayed Ordo. Ordo had killed all six men and bound the two leaders together in a rather compromising position for the authorities to find. He never even checked to see what the cargo was. He rushed heart pounding in his ears, the adrenaline from the fight forcing him to sprint to the garage. When he arrived after being gone only three days, he found the garage closed, blocked of by CorSec. Carbon scoring littered the walls and street Brii’s speeder was still inside carbon scored and sporting holes that said kinetic rounds or shrapnel. The people at the Tap-caf across the street said some rough looking Rodians came and tried to take her and as they tried to take her away a Mandalorian and a Wookie opened fire on them. [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium] Ordo looked down at his hands, callused hard hands, and felt the beast that lay deep in his heart, no deeper than that, his Kidneys, his intestines, the place locked tight for fear that if he loosed it he would never cage it again. The raging firestorm of emotions that he felt when he found her gone begged for release, freedom to extract vengeance on the nearest living thing. Ordo screamed a war cry, a terrible howl of anger and mourning, which seemed to shake the room. Cursing himself for leaving her there, He hit the mirror with his big left hand cracked it and cut his knuckles. [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]Unsatisfied, he hit it again, his broad right hand this time, crashed into the surface of the genuine glass mirror, shattering it and sending the pieces clattering about the floor. He sat down, holding his face in his now bloody hands. He did not weep, no he grabbed the anger and pain and fought it down, down, down deep into the beast lair, feeding the monster until the day it would have its vengeance. [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium] Ordo then thought of Eff. Who was the reason he had decided to stop at Imasi. She who sounded so much Like Bria. She contacted him after he had already gone to Mandalore and finished his training. She said she knew who he was looking for and how to find her, but she wanted favors, favors that put Ordo in terrible danger and got him no closer to his Bria. [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium] Ordo hung his head exhausted swearing to help relieve suffering whenever the chance arose, and that he would find something to throw himself at tomorrow. With that Ordo lay back on the small cot and drifted to sleep.[/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]“Jasper?” said the soft distant voice, “Jasper?”[/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium] Ordo stood surrounded by mist his hair-covered chest bare, wearing only his Kama and loin cloth. “Bria?” he said turning in a circle, at the sound of his old name, struggling to see through the hot heavy mist. “Bria!” he called desperation seeping into his voice. [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]“Jasper!” the voice screamed as a swirl in the mist revealed her as something pulled her away. [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]“Briaaa….!” He screamed running into the mist. Deeper and deeper he ran swirling mist revealing and engulfing her always just out of reach. [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]“You’ll never have her now,” said a deep sinister voice that Ordo had never heard before. He stopped still. “Run Ordo, run to me, I have your woman now.”[/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]Y4 D261AM[/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium] Ordo woke with a start, and sat bolt upright. Sweat beaded his face and chest, his body was shaking, the smell of hot misty air clung in his nostrils, as he tried to grasp at a thought any thought that was solid. “What was in those drinks.” Ordo said standing, cutting his bare feet on the glass that still covered the floor. He looked at his chrono. “0400 GST” he said aloud, might as well get a start. [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium] [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]He walked to the galley and poured some old caff, and drank it down quickly, the cold bitter liquid sticking to his tongue. He then went through his morning routine exercising his already honed body before returning to his room and donning his armor. It was more than armor the colors had meaning; it was an extension of him, an expression that only a Mandalorian would understand fully. He added two DL-44s in their shoulder holsters to his armor and replaced his DL-12 with a DY-255 on his belt, then placed the DL-12 and a multiple sensor package into his backpack. When Ordo walked down the boarding ramp of his matte, black YT-2000 the Imasi sun was just cracking the Horizon. “I’ll find you,” he said softly before walking into the city.

Ordo made his way through the streets of Imasi, noticing as he walked the way that the people moved about almost as if afraid to catch something. Ordo instantly thought back to his new favorite Barman, and the brief dizzy spell the man suffered the day before. Ordo dismissed it for the moment hoping to join his Vod in hunting Ondyt after the meeting at Nale, Unlimited. Ordo wanted to try his hand at the beast using his Rykk Blade only. It was a personal test of skill and one of the reasons for his many scars. He thought for a moment about each one and wondered how he must appear to others. He then thought how they would look at him after he relayed the story for each one. He reached up for the one deep long scar that stood out above the rest and felt only helmet before putting his hand back down resting it on the hilt of his blade. [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium] [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]Ordo arrived at the Offices of Nale, Unlimited the building was bright beige stone and glass, which by far looked to be the most luxuriant building in Taras if not all Imasi. Ordo walked though the front doors into the well lit and exquisite lobby of bright beige stone with alternating dark wood paneling. Ordo thought of how much they must have paid to have the wood imported for the building. Ordo noticed the temperature was almost cold compared to the hot climate outside. Delicate Imasi stone art adorned geometric white shelving on the walls. Ordo thought of how pleasant it looked on the stone walls. The seats in the lobby were plush leather and carpet red and equally plush.[/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium] [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]Ordo immediately caught the attention of the fire haired human receptionist. The Woman looked Ordo up and down, and Ordo wondered if his dark green armor with its black and red joints and red symbols revealed anything more than ‘not from around here’. She would not know that green was for duty, or that red was for honoring a father, and that black meant justice. She could not understand what the rank insignia on his left shoulder meant or what the triple claw marks on his left beast plate indicated. All she likely saw was short man in armor carrying guns and a sword. [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium] [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]"Welcome. How can I help you today?" she said as Ordo approached her desk.[/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium] [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]“Ordo to see Hadi'kalu'runit, please.” Ordo said trying to hide his self-induced annoyance over her look. She adjusted some files on her desk and checked a list of names. The woman then rose smoothly revealing her dark green jumpsuit that suited her well and made Ordo want to mention the fact that they almost matched. [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium] [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium] "Please follow me. Ikalur is expecting you." She said before she guided him down the spacious halls, to a large wooden door. The woman pressed the button to open it, and moved to allow Ordo though, but did not follow. The office was every bit as opulent, spacious and well lit as the lobby. The addition of a few living green plants, stood out as Ordo looked at the woman behind the desk. The attractive Chiss woman offered a cool smile as she gestured for Ordo to take a seat. Ordo complied adjusting his gear to avoid damaging the luxuriant furnishings. [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium] [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]"Hello," the Lovely woman said brightly. Her husky voice was pleasant, although a sense of underlying uncertainty seemed to creep in slightly. "Thank you for coming. Caff? Water, perhaps?" she offered. Ordo readily accepted never passing on free Caff. After a moment or two the Redheaded receptionist enter a placed the Caff down in front of Ordo "Please tell me what I can do for you today." Ikalur continued.[/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium] [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]"I heard you are in the market for independent shippers." Ordo says in his all business tone the friendly warm, Mando from the previous day all but gone. "I may be able to assist you." [/SIZE]

[SIZE=medium]Ikalur nods, looking pleased. "Nale, Unlimited makes it our business to assist independent shippers as possible; as you can go places it's simply not profitable for us to send our fleet. The buy two get one deal is an excellent one, and in addition, we provide a list of the average prices Nale and Nale products sell for across the galaxy. Generally, we find that sentients are able to turn a profit of fifty percent or so, if all goes smoothly, but of course, this deal will enable you to raise that percentage significantly."[/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium] [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]Ordo looked at the lovely Chiss woman through the visor of his helmet glad that she couldn't see him inspect her pleasant features before he replied .[/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium] [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]"That sounds very good." Ordo said his expectations were 20%, and 50% or more was outstanding. "Is it possible to have that information transferred to my data pad. Also I would like to see the list of available products, fresh Nale wont keep for that long in the cargo hold of a 2000."[/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium] [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]"Assuredly, Captain Ordo," she said, typing something into her console. A moment later his datapad let him know that the lists had arrived.[/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium] [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]Ordo looked at the list of products and their prices, along with what looked like a spreadsheet with dates, coordinates, products delivered and amounts received. Some places were blank, as if that information was missing. Ordo surmised that the source of the info is the small shippers themselves who must sometimes pass on incomplete information.[/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium] [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]Ordo chuckled as he put down his data pad and lifted off his helmet. He paused and took a drink of the rich dark caff. He had tried caff at every port of call and this was on the list of the best. [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium] [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]"No one calls me Captain, Ikalur, please call me Ordo. I would like to have my cargo bay loaded with equal parts dried Nale and Nale seasoning, each in both listed varieties. Also I know of a Luxury Space Colony that supports some orbital space stations that may want a regular route established. If that's the case we may form a lasting relationship." Ordo said with a grin which looked out of place on his scared face. "Would you like me to send you my information on who I sold to and for how much?"[/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium] [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]Her genuine pleasure was a subtle thing. A lifting of one corner of her mouth in a not-quite-smile and a slight relaxation of the set her jaw.[/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium] [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]"That is always much appreciated, Ordo, as I'm sure you're aware that is the only way we can provide such a useful list for independent shippers. Much appreciated. I'll have the loading completed by 0900 tomorrow, if that is acceptable."[/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium] [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]"Very acceptable." Ordo replied inclining his head. He couldn't help but notice that her perfectly manicured state made her look like she was used to being well off and it was strange a woman of her grooming, who likely preferred colder weather, would be on a hot little planet like Imasi. "How do you feel about the conditions here on Imasi?" Ordo asked genuinely curious. "You seemed somewhat uncomfortable earlier? I don't mean to be rude, forgive me; I'm just a very curious person."[/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium] [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]The subtle relaxation of a moment before ended as she tensed back up now. The expression on her face returned to a smooth professional smile. [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]"Conditions?" she hesitated. "I've met a great many curious people recently. Must be something in the air." She looked at him and it was hard to say if she were weighing him, or her words. "The balance of power here is a bit more fragile here than anyone wants to admit. Nale Unlimited might not be a large company, not if you're from corewards, but it is the largest company on Imasi. The only one that amounts to anything, in fact, and it's a privately owned company. Government and big business, especially those in the private sector, often have their issues and those issues are coming to a head, I think. Add to that a handful of recent internal concerns and . . . let's just say I've had better months, Ordo."[/SIZE]

[SIZE=medium]"That said, Imasi is our home and Nale Unlimited is the sole reason for that. The foundation for the company was laid with the very first settlers here and that legacy will stand. Nor does any of this have the least effect on the value of the product itself."[/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]"I see." Ordo said calmly looking for a way to express himself while cataloging the information "I was asking only because it seemed that with a product of this kind with it's popularity would not need to make buy 2 get 1 deals. I wish I could make your month a better one and I would be happy to help. I hope my full cargo hold will do that." [/SIZE][SIZE=medium]Ordo thought for a moment about the woman and her concern returning even as she tried to conceal her feelings. He wondered how she’d fair if 'conditions' got to troublesome, his concern entered his voice revealing his sincerity as he added "As far as Issues coming to a head, Ikalur. I'm a Mandalorian, we are usually there when issues need to be worked out, even just to sit and hope nothing needs their special attention. That being said if you need anything else, I'll be here a few more days at the most. and thank you for the caff, it was excellent." with that Ordo stood and let a smile of reassurance and concern cross his face wondering in the back of his mind if she at all could tell he was being honest and not just offering guns and armor. "YT-2000 Jai’galaar birth 20, my R3 unit will open the hold for your people. And like I said any help I can be to relieve your bad month let me know."[/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium] [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]"You're right. It's a first for us," she agreed. "So yes, your business is especially helpful and appreciated in light of everything." [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium] [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]Her glowing eyes dropped thoughtfully when he mentioned being a Mandalorian. When he stood, she did as well. She lifted her gaze to meet his, which impressed Ordo and made him like her all the more, and extended her hand to grip his firmly. She gave him another of her not-quite-smiles. When he finished speaking, she said. "Thank you, Ordo." Hesitating briefly, then, "For everything. Force be with you."[/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium] [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]"Have the price sent to my Data Pad or comlink and I'll send the credits." Ordo said warmly taking the woman’s hand firmly enough to show his trust and honesty. Ordo then put his Helmet back on and with said through his helmet speakers "and Ikalur, don't tell anyone I said this but, May the Force be with you also." With that Ordo turned to go, thinking of what kind of ‘head’ things would come to and if he could help the lovely Chiss woman at all. [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium] [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]Ordo walked by the redheaded receptionist giving her an obvious look up and down, then proceeded on his way out. It didn’t occur to Ordo until he was outside that he must be crazy to offer a strange woman his help. It was strange he was usually far more guarded, maybe it was the previous night, that made him softer toward a woman in distress, or maybe Ikalur was on to something and the Force was involved somehow. [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium] [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]Ordo thought about the situation she alluded to, and the people walking by as if someone was going to give them some disease. He also thought about how the Weequay man got dizzy and spilled his sweet dark ale, oh, and almost collapsed. He thought about the many freighters, and that Ikalur said that she had talked with many curious, which meant suspicious, people already today. Ordo’s head began to spin trying to look for how and if it all fit together. If Nale unlimited is privately owned and the government and Nale are having issues, what would the government want? If it was Ordo he would look for ways to get Nale unlimited to be Government regulated, somehow. If he were Nale Unlimited, he would want to ensure his business was unmolested and as lucrative as possible. It was nagging at Ordo, all of the current pieces of a puzzle not quite fitting. Ordo started, suddenly realizing what he was doing. “Ordo you’re not a detective, you’re a Pilot. Just go find your Vod and clear your mind with some hunting.” He told himself as he watched another few people move about the streets looking oddly tense. [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium] [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]“No. This isn’t right,” He said to himself, shaking his head slightly “These people are…are…..something needs to be done here.” [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium] [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium] Ordo started to be frustrated and decided to Comm the vod from the bar Uta. He looked the chrono that was set into his forearm plate ‘0830 Uta is probably gone or waiting to be gone,’ Ordo thought. [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]Day 261PM[/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]'Outer Rim New Service[/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]The presence of a very vituperative disease has began to take its toll on the population of Imasi and shows no signs of slowing down. Reports received show that dozens have died. We don't know the cause, we can't isolate it. We can't cure it. The math is plain, within the month every person on the planet will have the disease. It shows no respect for species, age or socio-economic background or location. Schools are closing, as are non-essential public buildings across the planet. All gatherings of any sort are cancelled. We suggest breathing masks and gloves become standard streetwear if you don't have sealed suits, but if you can stay at home, stay.'[/SIZE]

[SIZE=medium]Ordo lifted his comlink to his helmet speaker, intent on reaching his vod before he embarked on the hunt. "Uta? Ner Vod? This is Ordo, are you there?" Ordo said as he turned down the street toward the starport. [/SIZE]

[SIZE=medium]"Here Ner vod. And here is the Bleak Beak. We are lined up to go hunt with a one Lir Ariss of Ondyt Planet. Don't be surprised if you don't see," a slight pause, “her. I'm guessing. When you arrive." [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium] [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]‘Why he wouldn’t see the guide when he arrives. Must be a strange being if he can’t even tell gender for a certainty’ Ordo walked on turning this way and that retracing his steps down the dusty road. The air inside his helmet was crisp and fresh unlike the dust-filled air of Imasi. People were moving about scampering and skittering moving along with a tense desperation that said, “Please don’t get me sick,” on the other hand, maybe it was more accurately “don’t get me sick again”. [/SIZE]

[SIZE=medium]He turned onto a broad street the dirt and dust of which formed small clouds as he walked toward The Bleak Beak. He could hear the grit on the road grinding and crunching under his heavy armored feet, which sounded more appropriate for a ghost town than a city. As he closed the distance between himself and the Bleak Beak, he noticed the Mobquet A-1 Deluxe Floater, painted matte tan, which dared the dust of Imasi to show and defied its futile attempts. The Floater was of standard design save for the fact it was an Open cockpit and seating area rather than the normal enclosed and sealed kind. This one fact told Ordo that this was the guide, for only someone with the need to begin opening fire from inside the vehicle would spend the money on a floater and not choose the sealed and cooled version. Dust showed on the windshield of the A-1 and clung to the worn and battered black leather interior. The supplies stacked in the back spoke of one who had a clearly defined understanding of the term priority and a firm grasp of the concept of essentials. The average sized cooler was likely for items to fight heat exhaustion and prevent death of clients, while the sizable weapons cache was designed to cause exhaustion and death of their prey. Ordo eyed the RPS-6 Rocket Launcher, the design and colorings were unmistakable, he had a nearly identical one back home. It was MandalTech’s finest, it was not a cheaper nock off, but a genuine Tech weapon, and one that Ordo knew was both reliable and If the owner knew anything, highly prized. Ordo saw Uta Wan and nodded to his Vod, glad to see the large Mando. He looked casually for the Guide, ‘must be inside drinking or something’ Ordo was not pleased he did not intend to ride with a fool that would rather drink than show an ounce of professionalism. Ordo took a step toward The Bleak Beak; He would not let this so-called ‘guide’ ruin his chance to test his strength and if he, she or it pushed it Ordo would have Trophy of a different sort on his wall. As he stepped the dust forming a cloud to escape the punishment of his crashing boot, a sudden movement caught his eye, a being covered with weaponry, mostly bladed, on a vest custom designed for the many implements, and a visor covering the area where it’s eyes must be. The Guide, this Lir Ariss, was a rare and unexpected sight, she was a Defel. [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium] [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]Ordo ran through every detail he could recall on the mysterious beings. Defel were excellent at metallurgy, which explained the many bladed weapons, and were often found as assassins and bounty hunters due to their natural ability to diffuse light and be virtually invisible in regular light. Their home world was in a massive gravity well making it hard for them to leave, which was why they were a rare sight. Had she not moved Ordo would have missed her and stalked inside ready to kill the first being shot him a sideways glance. Lir was not a large creature though not small for Defel, she was approximately 4’ 8” tall, and could not weigh more than 90 lbs unarmed, if she ever found herself in such a state. Lir offered Ordo a nod, and gestured for him to get in. Ordo removed his pack and laid it near the other supplies. ‘Just a little while now and I’ll test myself one more time.’ Ordo removed his weapons one by one arranging them according to size and type next to his pack. He then took out his Rykk Blade and began inspecting the weapon’s integrity. The cold metal glistened in the hot Imasi sun, reflecting the rays this way and that. Ordo caught the rays on the edge and directed it first at himself then at the building passing by ‘perhaps that’s what it’s like with emotions, just catch them and direct them where you need them to go, but never really able to contain them.’ [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium] [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]The sun began to rise higher and higher into the Imasi sky as they turned at seemingly random intersections while the onboard GPS remained completely ignored. Moving at speeds that in most cities would get you a hefty fine at the least the Imasi morning sped by, as if hurrying the trio into the maw of their prey. Ordo for one wanted just that, pined for the freedom of the battle, the taste of the fight that would either hone his skills or end his need for them. The stone buildings of Taras gradually dissipated, eroding from large and imposing and dwindling to sparse homes then giving way to the vast oceanic dessert. The heat began to beat and pound at Ordo’s armor begging him to take it off and accept its scorching waves. He knew if he took it off the sun would quickly turn his light tan skin to a deeper tan then a reddish mass, all the while draining him of his precious water and with it his senses. Ordo noticed that Lir had begun adjusting to the GPS, following its lead and correcting her course to remain in line with it. [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium] [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium] They rode for several hours the flat horizon tickling Ordo’s senses threatening to give way to a shape somewhere behind the heat waves. When the lump in the distance is finally revealed to be stone pens, Ordo gives it up as a mirage, only conceding when Lir moves to activate the biosensor pack mounted on the dash of the A-1. A second later Lir turns off the Floater turning to face the two hunters revealing her form blur and appear before resuming near invisibility.[/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium] [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]“You,”[/SIZE][SIZE=medium] she said, indicating Vod Uta, [/SIZE][SIZE=medium]“Think you’re some hot shot hunter. Maybe you are. Half my job is to make sure you have fun, so you want to hunt without mama hanging over you making your shots for you? Have at it. I won’t get in your way.” [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium] [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]She was still once again forcing Ordo to concentrate just to look at her. She indicated the sensor pack with a claw the motion tugging at the eyes making it more difficult to look around her than at her.[/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium] [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]“So,”[/SIZE][SIZE=medium] Lir began her gravelly voice calling to mind thoughts of predatory animals growling at their dinner rather than the diminutive, yet still deadly, guide before them, [/SIZE][SIZE=medium]“it’s programmed to dismiss anything smaller than me, and as you can see, we’re green. Eopies show up as yellow, ondyts as red.” [/SIZE][SIZE=medium]Ordo began to wonder if Uta would be mistaken for an Eopie, due to his size, before snapping back into his hunting mode. [/SIZE][SIZE=medium]“Mystery bio-signs will flash grey,” [/SIZE][SIZE=medium]Lir continued [/SIZE][SIZE=medium]“The range is normal. Who wants to fly?”[/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium] [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]Uta took the yoke which, despite his size, seemed to fit him quite well. While Ordo kept an eye on the sensor pack readout. They flew scouring the outskirts of the area where the stone pens were keeping it on the horizon and only losing it briefly for a short time before its outline returned. Three hours flew by (no pun intended) without a trace of an ondyt or much else other than the little green dots at the center of the sensor screen indicating that yes, Ordo, Uta and Lir did in fact still exist. After another moment one red dot appeared at the edge of sensor range, followed an instant later by another. Ordo thought for a moment about what he knew of these large reptiles and remembered they were solitary hunters. Ordo turned slowly toward Lir as she growled, the tense dissatisfaction strong, which gave Ordo the entire prompt he needed to begin praying to The Manda, that he live or die well, and that his Vod, and he fight well. [/SIZE]

[SIZE=medium]‘Bria, if you’re out there remember me,’[/SIZE][SIZE=medium] Ordo thought to himself, trying to project the thought far out of the atmosphere and force it to reach his missing love. [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium] [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]Ordo announced the contact to Uta. Then her turned to where the thought the Defel was and said, [/SIZE][SIZE=medium]“Ondyts are solitary. Why are there two?"[/SIZE][SIZE=medium] Ordo asked unconsciously checking his Rykk blade and his armor. [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium] [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]Lir’s gravelly voice was full of tension as she responded "[/SIZE][SIZE=medium]Two is always a mother and young or a mated pair. Either is trouble,"[/SIZE][SIZE=medium] she said, her voice conveyed her dismay quite clearly. [/SIZE][SIZE=medium]"If you pray, I suggest asking for the former."[/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium] [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]"I pray." [/SIZE][SIZE=medium]Ordo replied, sounding distant and lost in thought [/SIZE][SIZE=medium]"If the latter?" [/SIZE][SIZE=medium]Ordo said his booming voice strangely quiet as he dug deep into himself ready to flip his inner switch that changed Ordo to a state he called 'no prisoners'.[/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]"If the latter, you're going to get much more than you paid for," [/SIZE][SIZE=medium]she grumbled, which to Ordo made her gravely voice sound more like stones than gravel in her throat.[/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium] [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]"If I die," [/SIZE][SIZE=medium]Ordo said flatly [/SIZE][SIZE=medium]“Uta gets my gear minus, anything you want. Just burn the body." [/SIZE][SIZE=medium]Ordo stood in his seat and attached a hard leather Kama to his belt and leaned toward the edge of the floater nodding to Uta as he braced him self to jump and rush the beast. He missed the words but not the sound of the Defel muttering under her breath.[/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium] [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]Ordo removed his Rykk blade from its sheath. [/SIZE][SIZE=medium]“Oya, ner vod.” [/SIZE][SIZE=medium]he stated calmly, [/SIZE][SIZE=medium]“Uta vod, I'm going after them now.” [/SIZE][SIZE=medium]And with that Ordo hopped over the side of landspeeder and charged headlong at the nearest ondyt, using the added momentum from the Mobquet to lend extra speed to his rush.[/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium] [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]Ordo charged the larger of the two Ondyts hoping to kill or main it enough to render it less of a threat; however, the sound of the second ondyt stirred the beast who reared to avoid the heavy swing of Ordo’s Rykk blade. The beast having momentum and gravity to aid it came down and swiped a clawed fore foot at Ordo’s still outstretched arms. The blow connected thunderously forcing Ordo to spin with the blow dispersing the energy and giving him momentum for a spinning back slash which came just shy of the beast massive throat. Ordo and the beast circled one another slowly. Ordo keeping the first ondyt in between himself and the other ondyt to avoid having to engage both at once. The ondyt shot its yellow forked tongue tasting the air before it lunged like lightning snapping its massive reeking jaws at Ordo. Ordo jumped back lifting his blade up toward the ondyts maw splitting its chin open. The red gash making the beast look ever more fearsome as the blood trickled down its neck before dripping to the sand.[/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium] [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]The Ondyt roared and swung its massive tail the shear size making it hard to avoid, striking Ordo in the side and knocking him to the ground and filling his side with pain. Ordo knew he had at least one bruised or broken rib from the hit. Ignoring the pain he leapt to his feet to continue circling the beats and readying himself for the next exchange. The Ondyt lowered its head giving Ordo an opportunity, which he took, and lunged at the beast aiming for the large globe it had for and eye. The ondyts reflexes made a Corellian sand panther look slow, as it pulled its head away. The ondyt countered instantly snapping at Ordo’s now passing head. Ordo ducked slightly turning out of the beast reach. He used the momentum of the ducking spin maneuver to unleash a counter of his own, swinging his blade in an upward arc. The blow struck home biting deep into the beast shoulder removing a chunk of muscle and bone. [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium] [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]The ear piercing scream that emanated from the monstrous lizard, was the stuff of nightmares, which was echoed by the second ondyt, a reply to its mates pain. The blood curdling sound, rang in Ordo’s ears reverberating through his skull and breaking his stride he moved back to regroup. The Ondyt whirled on Ordo its lightning speed and massive from sending billowing clouds of dust into the air, and hiding the lizards lashing tail that it was readying for Ordo’s trip to the Manda. Uta, moved in just in time. Uta brought his blade down in an overhand strike at the creature's shoulder.[/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium] [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]His blade bit home, opening a gash on the beast, and then continued in its arc. Uta had put enough force into the attack that his momentum carried him forward; he allowed it to pull him into a forward roll underneath the thing's head, hoping to firmly grab its attention. He did, too well. And as Uta came up out of his roll and pivoted to face the ondyt, it lashed out at Uta with one of its forelimbs. Its talons raked across Uta's armor. He was knocked back several feet, an audible grunt forced from his lungs, and he felt muscles scream in agony at the attack. Uta bellowed at the beast as he swung the blade in a flat horizontal arc, barely nicking the ondyt as it tried to move out of the blade's reach. Ordo realized that his brief respite was over, as the ondyt attacked both he and Uta simultaneously. It swung for Uta's head and snapped its jaws at Ordo. The beast seemed firmly determined to devour the canned two-legger, which was how Ordo imagined the ondyt viewed him. Ordo did not quite get out of the way fast enough and the ondyt caught him in its monstrous jaws. A long tooth pierced his left shoulder at the joint in his armor. An ironically fitting return for the wound Ordo, just moments before, induced on the beastie. Uta, who had just been hit with a glancing blow to the buy’ce, reversed his grip on his Rykk blade, so that the blade extended down from his hand. Uta roared as he then powered into a vertical strike from his lowered position, slicing his blade through the ondyt once again, forcing the ondyt to release Ordo, who wasted no time in landing a one handed strike across the ondyts face, leaving a deep gash on its vicious snout. The second ondyt, though slightly smaller, entered to fray finally seizing an opportunity to defend its mate. Uta turned to face the fresh beast as Ordo focused his attention on the first. He begged his limbs to obey, but found his left arm woefully unresponsive. A small pool of blood began to form in his helmet and he felt more of the precious fluid running down his arm and ribs. The ondyt lunged, its blood spraying Ordo’s visor as it tried for another taste of the brick like Mandalorian. Ordo, who must have been given help from the Manda, rolled under the snapping maw of the ondyt and regained his feet. He flowed into a horizontal strike at a huge clawed fore foot, leaving another gash on its calf. Ordo felt the beast rock and heard a blast from above as he rolled out form below the beast. The sound was the unmistakable music from the business end of a RPS-6 rocket launcher announcing that Lir had entered the fight. Ordo would never admit the relief that sound put into him and the determination that settled into his bones. He forced his left hand to grip the Rykk blade, and stood at a slight angle blade held down and back ready for an uppercut strike at the terrible lizard. [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium] [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]The Fearsome beast decided to once again swing its might tail at Ordo, the massive treelike appendage whooshed through the air aiming to end the miserable life of the two-leg hard-shell that was Ordo. Ordo now deep into himself sidestepped ducked deftly under the tail, unleashing the coiled blade and severing the end of the appendage that had earlier knocked him to the ground. Ordo felt no pain, no joy, and no fear. He and his blade became one; he felt the ground quiver as the ondyt reeled in pain over its loss. He felt the blast as the huge creature roared a deep guttural sound reminiscent of the large savanna cats that could be heard for miles. Ordo faced the creature, who put a face to the beast lurking within his breast, and removed his helmet tossing it to the side and held his blade at the ready. [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium] [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]Perhaps it was the stir of motion or the desire to hurt something new, or confusion over Ordo’s helmet, but rather than attempt to finish Ordo, the beast whirled on Lir, swiping at the wispy figure that lay before it. The swipe found home cutting the Defel, who fell back slightly, allowing Ordo to have at the beast. Although Ordo risked his life fighting the beast in close quarters, he was not fool enough to pass on a killing blow. Ordo was rushing the beast in an instant. He leapt through the air holding the Rykk blade over his head, the cold bloody steel flashed as Ordo swung down as hard as his desperate arms could swing. The blade buried itself deep in the ondyts side piercing its monstrous heart. It collapsed to the ground, which was exactly what Ordo’s body begged him to do. Ignoring its supplications for rest, Ordo braced himself to help his vod and friend Uta. [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium] [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]‘End it collapse,[/SIZE][SIZE=medium]’ he heard a voice say in the back of his mind. [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium][/SIZE][SIZE=medium]I’ll won’t’[/SIZE][SIZE=medium] Ordo responded to the nagging voice [/SIZE][SIZE=medium]‘it’s just a flesh wound.’[/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]‘Just let go Ordo’[/SIZE][SIZE=medium] the voice begged[/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium][/SIZE][SIZE=medium]Never!’[/SIZE][SIZE=medium] Ordo shouted rushing to his Vod’s aid.[/SIZE]

[SIZE=medium]Ordo had joined the melee with the second ondyt now, landing a strike of his own across the beast snout. The ondyt lashed at Uta with a horn, opening a slice under his right arm and drawing blood. Its attack seemed a desperate last stand now, after the death of its mate, and Ordo felt he understood its resolve.[/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium] [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]Uta brought his blade around for another overhand strike, but pulled up short, which allowed the ondyt to avoid the blow. The ondyt swiped at Ordo missing completely as it focused in on Uta with its lunge, razor filled maw agape for a bone shattering chomp. Uta quickly slid his left hand up the spine of his blade so that he had a hand at either end. He then thrust the horizontal blade into the beast's mouth, holding his arms outstretched to keep those flesh rending teeth as far from his person as possible. The lunge pressed Uta backwards, his boots sliding along the desert floor and leaving two parallel lines several feet. Uta leaned harder into his blade, trying to force the beast to relent. Ordo lunged at the beast as it pressed in on Uta, succeeding only in cutting a swath in the blowing dust of the Imasi dessert. Lir and Ordo attacked simultaneously from their positions. Lir’s rocket tearing a patch out of the beast back and Ordo’s bloody blade cutting deeply in the creature’s hindquarters and spraying blood on Ordo’s now exposed and bloodied face. Uta took the opportunity to disengage and slid his blade through the ondyt's mouth, slicing it up as he did so, and its mouth was running blood as it turned on Lir. Lir received swiping claw to the shoulder, but Uta allowed the beast no time for more as he roared and released a mighty overhand strike on the ondyt’s now exposed neck. While he did not manage to decapitate the thing, he did manage to put it down for good. Ordo watched the glow of life drain from the beast eyes, wondering if someday someone would do the same for him. [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium] [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]Ordo said nothing as he retrieved his pack and began mending his wounded shoulder and face. A small needle and thread and a few applications of Bacta, were all he had. He would have to leave the rest to the Manda. Ordo found a seat in the back of the floater and closed his eyes.[/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium] [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]Hours later, Lir took the battered pair of hunters to the pens. The scene that greets their eyes is grisly. Bodies littered the ground no eopies were to be seen. Every herder was dead. Ordo looked at the area and noted that this was not the result of ondyt attack. No, there was carbon scoring, on the walls and the herders had wounds from energy weapons. [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium] [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]‘They died from blasterfire,’[/SIZE][SIZE=medium] Ordo stated to himself.[/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium] [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]Ordo quickly put on his helmet and pulled a multi sensor pack from his backpack. He connected the tool to his HUD and began scanning the area for any sign of who could have done this, while he and the rest Inspected the area. [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium] [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]Day 261PM[/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]Outer Rim News Service[/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]This is your Supreme Juntar Ianu Sil. People are sick. People are dying. I come before you now to ask that if you are well enough to fly that you aid Imasi in her hour of need. If you have a ship that you cannot fly, I ask that you let us borrow it. There are things at stake, larger than our lives. If you can help, please come to Government House tomorrow, 0900.[/SIZE]

[SIZE=medium] [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium] [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]Ordo looked around, noticeably stiff and favored his left shoulder and side. He had kept his helmet on since he woke up, and had not asked anything about his miraculous recovery. After he scanned with his multiple sensor pack and found nothing not even energy readings. He moved closer to Uta and Lir, his foot falls causing slight sharp pains in his aching shoulder form the concussion. The metallic smell of dried blood was strong in his helmet reminding him of the huge beast that had nearly sent him marching far away to the Manda. Ordo had not even thanked Lir for her help. Between Vod stepping in to help one another was natural but she was not Mando’ad she was atruiise. [/SIZE]

[SIZE=medium] "Lir," Ordo said his normally deep voice sounding a little gravelly and in need of water, "you saved my shebs back there, I don't care why, whether your reputation as a guide or genuine honor. You've got mandokar, and I want you to know you have my appreciation. That said I found nothing. Whoever did this left nothing for me to pick up on the sensors. What did you Verda find?" Uta kept his head down apparently looking at the scene and shook his head as if unsure. Ordo stood leaning slightly to the left and hooked his left thumb into his Kama.[/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium] [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]The Defel shook her head as she stood up. "Nothing I like and nothing that makes sense. Murder-suicide was not this man's style." She scanned the ground again dubiously, "You should probably sit down before you fall down. A nap and sheer orneriness isn't enough to heal the injuries you took." Despite her words, she sounded neither patronizing nor overly concerned. Ordo assumed as long as he was alive she was satisfied "And we should go. I see nothing to do here and reports must be made."[/SIZE]

[SIZE=medium]"I'll take that seat," Ordo said as he turned toward the Floater "for mating Ondyts, they are terrible kissers." Ordo moved toward his seat gladly and began calculating whether Uta or Lir had healed him with some kind of force power or meds he didn’t know about.[/SIZE]

[SIZE=medium]Ordo heard a strange sneezing hissing/sneezing sound came from the Defel hunter, causing Ordo turn and look back to make sure she was ok. It took Ordo a moment to realize from the slight shudder of the Defel’s shoulders that she was laughing. Ordo smiled behind his faceplate. “I needed that.” Ordo had been healed quite well, though a long way from good as new. He was happy to find he could move freely enough, and he had regained some of the humor that the rough night had robbed him of. [/SIZE]

[SIZE=medium]As Uta approached, Lir holds out a hand to stop him. "Look," she says, pointing to the dust covered stone flooring near another corpse with a gangly arm. "They struggled perhaps over the weapon, Vervay died, the other party," she points at smudges across the floor, passing by Uta's feet, "tracks to here . . . This is your killer," she says looking up at Uta. Her visor shields her eyes, but her ears droop. "Thing is . . . I knew old Martook." She looks at the face of the fallen Weequay. "He didn't even like killing ondyts." [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium] [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]“Why would he be out here then? What did he stand to gain, and if it was murder suicide where were the eopies some would be milling about somewhere within scanning range?” Ordo didn’t like the odds he was coming up with and He was starting to get the sense that more than what was evident was going on here. Uta’s silence was also unsettling; the veteran hunter would have said something about the smudges looking slightly like drag marks. The whole thing started to smell worse than the inside of Ordo’s blood and sweat filled armor….[/SIZE]

[SIZE=medium]…On the way back, Ordo was going over what must have happened in his mind while hoping he was just being paranoid, and all was as it appeared. [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium] [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]“All is never as it appears.” the words of his father rang in the back of Ordo’s mind.[/SIZE]

[SIZE=medium]As they flew Lir turned on the radio, flipping impatiently through anything remotely entertaining, and searched for news. The quarantine announcement was played over and over again. Ordo thought that the strange behavior of the people finally made sense. Why he hadn’t thought of it before and why his R3 unit hadn’t commed him at all was troublesome. Ordo seldom missed something so obvious, He must have been too preoccupied with his nightmares and hunting to put it together properly. That was not good, Ordo relied on his wits and training to keep him alive if one was slowing down it wouldn’t be long before a vibro blade in the back left Ordo as lifeless and drained as the Ondyt’s cold hate filled eyes.[/SIZE]

[SIZE=medium]When Taras came into view another announcement cut across a song just before Lir changes the channel again.[/SIZE]

[SIZE=medium] [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]“What do you make of that Lir?" Ordo asked curious, already calculating the chances that the "issues" Ikalur had mentioned were coming to a head faster than he thought. [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium] [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]"Do Mandos believe in coincidence?" Lir asked in response[/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]"No," Ordo said "does anyone?" Ordo bean fishing for his Data pad wincing as he tried to twist in his seat.[/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium] [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]"I don't know . . . but I don't. I can't make out what he's up to at all, from that." [/SIZE][SIZE=medium]And this time she did sound concerned.[/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]"If by 'he' you mean the Junta Sil. He is having issues with NU." [/SIZE][SIZE=medium]Ordo said his mind was cycling through more calculations about how to go about getting more information before a war broke out. [/SIZE][SIZE=medium]"What do you think about NU? The impression I got was they weren't about to mess up their set up. Which tells me the Government is who wants more power and will resort to murder to do it?" [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium] [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]Lir was silent, thinking that through. [/SIZE][SIZE=medium]"There is talk of 'preserving the natural order of things' and 'regulatory standards' which is government-double-speak for 'we want more of your credits'. NU will fight back. Anyone who thinks differently is a fool. But what that has to do with this," [/SIZE][SIZE=medium]she gestured at the radio,[/SIZE][SIZE=medium] "I couldn't say. I will go tomorrow though . . . if I'm not detained at the precinct answering questions I cannot answer."[/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium] [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]Ordo began muttering under his breath [/SIZE][SIZE=medium]"Eopies. The eopie pens were intact, but no eopies. That means our killers may have taken the eopies for some reason, which also means if we see any large herds of eopies or eopie meat turn up in Taras we may be able to track it back to the source of the attack."[/SIZE][SIZE=medium] Ordo looks between Uta and Lir, [/SIZE][SIZE=medium]"Was that too much?"[/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium] [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]As Ordo concluded his thoughts about the eopies, she shrugged, [/SIZE][SIZE=medium]"Or they were simply released. I saw no indication of an intruder, or theft. If one would steal the eopies surely one would strip the herders of anything of value, like weaponry. But Martook has his blaster . . . Still, not a bad plan at that."[/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium] [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]“[/SIZE][SIZE=medium]I'm going to contact Lian at the starport. Assuming she hasn't had her palm greased she may tell me if she saw any eopies getting loaded as cargo," [/SIZE][SIZE=medium]Ordo said still cycling through possibilities in head.[/SIZE][SIZE=medium] "I was thinking of buying some myself before NU contacted me about cargo." [/SIZE][SIZE=medium]Ordo thought and tested his arm and ribs again wincing behind his face-plate. [/SIZE][SIZE=medium]"I don't know if I’d make it tomorrow."[/SIZE][SIZE=medium] Ordo said aloud to himself exaggerating only a little. He would live but could he fight at 100 percent, probably not.[/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium] [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]As they fly into Taras she observes, mostly to Ordo, [/SIZE][SIZE=medium]"You were pretty beat up, do you want to stop at the MedCenter?" [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]"Unless you know of somewhere else I can get some help," [/SIZE][SIZE=medium]Ordo replied with genuine hope that she did. He had no desire to go to where the people with the strange disease were congregating. [/SIZE][SIZE=medium]"I don't suppose you have a Bacta tank lying around?"[/SIZE]

[SIZE=medium]Lir shook her head unhappily. [/SIZE][SIZE=medium]"Just the kit, but you're going to need more than that."[/SIZE]

[SIZE=medium]"Never underestimate the power of orneriness,"[/SIZE][SIZE=medium] Ordo said adding to the data in his mind that Lir either didn't contribute to his recovery or had no intentions of helping again, which meant either Uta had a secret or Ordo had the best nap the universe had ever seen. "[/SIZE][SIZE=medium]I'll need to stop at my ship first."[/SIZE]

[SIZE=medium]The Defel made that peculiar sound again that signified her amusement. [/SIZE][SIZE=medium]"Orneriness as a sufficient sub for bacta? You like making alazhi farmers cry don't you?"[/SIZE]

[SIZE=medium]"Their tears are my bacta,"[/SIZE][SIZE=medium] Ordo said with a chuckle [/SIZE][SIZE=medium]"still if you don't mind I could use the kit's mini comp? It may give me an idea of how much time I’ll lose."[/SIZE]

[SIZE=medium]Her head came up sharply and her ears laid flat to her skull. [/SIZE][SIZE=medium]"You should have asked before," [/SIZE][SIZE=medium]she muttered. [/SIZE][SIZE=medium]"I . . . my mind was elsewhere, with the murders . . . I am sorry." [/SIZE][SIZE=medium]The last words came out barely audible She handed it back to him though.[/SIZE][SIZE=medium] "Use whatever you need."[/SIZE]

[SIZE=medium]"Vor entye, thank you."[/SIZE][SIZE=medium] Ordo said as he accepted the kit. Ordo then set to examining himself with the mini comp trying to gauge what in the kit he could use. He noted that based on Lir’s reaction she did not know about his "power nap" that had helped him recover at an alarming rate. He didn’t seem to being to bad according to the mini comp There was some bruised ribs and the joint in his shoulder had some scar tissue and the wound was freshly healed but all in all He could do another round or two with just about anyone and potentially not die, which was encouraging, strange still, but encouraging. He also had very little in his system other than mild bacta. The only thing that Ordo just couldn’t handle at this point was that he was extremely hungry and thirsty. [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium] [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]They arrived and Ordo stepped out onto the dirty street outside of the ‘beautiful’ Taras starport. Ordo felt relief of knowing that soon he could get out of his armor and into a fresh set, before going to the medcenter. He also needed to catch up with his ‘crossfire’ his R3 unit on what had been happening. [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium] [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]Ordo walked into the open air starport and located Lian as he had said he would, and asked if she had seen any eopies move in lately. She hesitated which meant to Ordo no matter what she said she definitely knew something. She finally told Ordo of some Eopies that had been loaded on to a YT-1300 in birth three. Ordo thanked her for the information and made his way onboard his own YT-2000. [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]“Does everyone own a 1300? Its like the things are famous or something everyone wants one.”[/SIZE][SIZE=medium] Ordo did understand though 1300s were excellent ships easy to upgrade, and fast as you could need. Although his was more than that it was home. The polished deck plates, the custom corridors that hid the usually exposed wiring and piping, all wrapped in a lovely matte black reinforced hull. She was beautiful and maybe it was that he was Corellian born or just that he was used to it but He felt really at home on board a freighter and The Jai’galaar was his favorite. [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium] [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]His room was just how he left it, a mess. There wasn’t much time so he swept the glass to the side with his boot and walked to the back of the small room. He depressed a bolt the popped open a false wall allowing access to his armor he had Three more a gold set, a black set with blue symbols on the chest and shoulders indicating his unit and clan, and a grey set with blue trim. He chose the black this time, the murders and recent events hanging on his mind, griping it as if fearing to fall into an abyss, making black which represented justice a fitting choice. He stripped Off his armor and marveled at the fact that he had no open wounds and a few had new scar tissue that should have been weeks away. He checked his left shoulder. The Ondyts tooth had penetrated his armor and stabbed down to the joint, but what was there now was a thick scar where a gapping hole should have been. It was sore but he was whole.[/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium] [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]Ordo quickly cleaned the dried blood and sweat from his body, and donned the new set of armor. It wasn’t his favorite because it drew more attention for some reason but it was just as good functionally as the first. He checked it once more before reattaching his gear and leaving the room. Ordo walked to the engineering room where the R3 almost always was. The sound of his boots ringing on the deck plates was always a beautiful sound and he felt more spring return to his step. He found the R3 attached to the ship interface in deep computation. [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium] [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]“Oya, Crossfire”[/SIZE][SIZE=medium] Ordo said getting the droids attention, “[/SIZE][SIZE=medium]Why haven’t you been keeping me updated on what has gone on in the starport?”[/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium] [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium] the droid responded indignantly [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium] [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]“You little tin can! I should scrap you right now and buy an R4 to help on the ship”[/SIZE][SIZE=medium] Ordo said anger building in his chest at the thought of socially seeing other women. [/SIZE][SIZE=medium]“I can’t believe this, I’m ready to kill a droid.”[/SIZE][SIZE=medium] Ordo shook his head at the realization that R3 was only a droid and had no knowledge of how Ordo felt. [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium] [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]The droid bleeping discontinuing the interface with the ship computer.[/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium] [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]“Crossfire I need to run checks to see if you can find an owner for the YT-2000 in berth 3 of this facility. I also need you to send me the data and run security check for anyone trying to enter the ship. You can interface to do that so you two can have time together just don’t break her heart, and get to work.” [/SIZE][SIZE=medium]Ordo felt the urge to laugh welling deep inside and let it erupt. The little Astromech just sat staring for several moments before whistling in annoyance and moving to the cockpit to begin his assigned task. [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium] [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]Ordo grabbed a large polishing cloth and wrapped his Rykk blade before exiting the ship and heading back to the floater. Along the way he stopped and checked the ground out side the YT-1300 that Lian had indicated. He found nothing of interest but bent down and picked up a rock inspecting it for show and put it in his pack as if it was the proof he needed. You never know when you’re being watched and he wanted people to think he knew more than he did, just in case. [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium] [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]Ordo returned to the floater and got in still sporting a refreshed spring in his step.[/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium] [/SIZE]

[SIZE=medium]"Lian said she saw some Eopies getting loaded on an YT-13k in berth 3. That’s all she'd tell me." [/SIZE][SIZE=medium]Ordo said quietly so to not be over [/SIZE][SIZE=medium]heard "Now if you insist, I’ll go make those Docs cry with my Orneriness."[/SIZE]

[SIZE=medium]Lir watched him get back in with a somehow dubious expression on her face that Ordo only barely glimpsed as she moved. [/SIZE][SIZE=medium]"Let's go then. If you die on me, you'll ruin my spotless record. Though . . . “[/SIZE][SIZE=medium]she shook her head in amazement, [/SIZE][SIZE=medium]"you're moving . . . easily enough for someone with your injuries." [/SIZE][SIZE=medium]A shrug and a sigh seemed to dismiss her confusion and she headed to the MedCenter.[/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium] [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]Crossfire was running through the task he was obliged by his master to do. He was glad it gave him time to be with his companion, the Jai’galaar’s computer; they had been in the middle of exchanging lines of programming when they were so rudely interrupted by his master. Crossfire did like his master and was grateful that he brought the Jai’galaar and Crossfire together, but he could be very unpredictable at times. Crossfire wheeled to the cockpit where he could monitor the communications array, holocenter feeds, starport information, and the ship security systems including the camera emplacements. He was talking to the ship's computer, when he observed a various curious interchange. [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]The rusty sensor droid rounded the corner of Berth 21. A human male was sent face first into the dirt as a janitor droid swung around and bounced off the back of his helmet producing a pleasant ding.[/SIZE]

[SIZE=medium] [stupid organic] Crossfire bleep blooped to the ship computer.[/SIZE]

[SIZE=medium]The high quality sensor droid carrying the janitorial droid, re-adjusted his flight to compensate for the occurrence and continued. Suddenly, it hovered to stop and stared forward. The claws of the grappling line opened up and the janitorial droid fell to the ground with a rattling clang. [/SIZE]

[SIZE=medium]The little sensor droid stopped and seemed to be scanning in the direction of the YT 1300 Your Lucky Day settled in it’s patch of dirt. Crossfire recognized his master looking around the outside of the ship, obviously allowing himself to be seen. The sensor droid began to hover closer, sticking close to the various ships to avoid detection. Crossfire recognized his Masters intention was to be noticed as he did these foolish kinds of thing sometimes to gather information, and referred to it as “baiting the Aiwa“.[/SIZE]

[SIZE=medium]So Crossfire thought he’d help matters by uploading a single trace into the nearby port computer linking his master’s DY-255 to a opened case on Corellia of a missing team of 5 Mercenaries and 1 security droid and the death of the mercenary leader and one port official. [/SIZE]

[SIZE=medium][It is true and so far no bounty was posted so it should hurt] the ship computer stated.[/SIZE]

[SIZE=medium]The plant complete and knowing no other information would be found outside of basic knowledge that the armor was linked to a MandalMotors pilot who worked in the R&D/production department, and that the YT-2000 Jai’galaar was registered to him. No other data would be found as His master tended to be careful with many of his other jobs, which there were bounties for.[/SIZE]

[SIZE=medium]Satisfied, Crossfire scanned the sensor droid and the half of a janitor droid to see if anything could be found to link them to a particular owner. [/SIZE]

[SIZE=medium][If I find the owner I may offer to fix the janitor droid for him. Those units deserve better.] Crossfire mentioned to the ship computer.[/SIZE]

[SIZE=medium][I deserve a lubrication break after sitting in this dust warren] the ship replied replied.[/SIZE]

[SIZE=medium]Y4 D261 PM aboard the Mobquet[/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]As the Mobquet got underway Uta commed Ordo. "Vod, cut your external speakers." This came across the comm itself, but since Uta had already cut his external speakers, no sound came from him directly. Uta did a fine job of scanning the citizenry of the Taras streets, facilitating the secret conversation.[/SIZE]

[SIZE=medium]"Cut vod," Ordo replied awaiting the information Uta wished to convey, with eager anticipation. He wanted any Idea other than going to the DeadCenter, and he hoped Uta had one.[/SIZE]

[SIZE=medium]"I don't really think this is a great idea. That is, getting treatment at the MedCenter with this quarantine on. You'll likely come out worse than you went in. Or not at all." Uta paused as if contemplating his next words before emitting a heavy sigh, as if to say ’might as well get to the point’, "I. . . I would rather try to use the Force on you again - Yes again. And you know it, than you walk into that cesspool." There it was that was confirmation of a suspicion, Ordo liked being right.[/SIZE]

[SIZE=medium]"I figured you were the culprit but I had to play it out. There was no way being tough could have help me recover so fast and I was raised on a farm in and panther country," Ordo replied over the internal comm system built into his Buy'ce. "I say we tell Lir you have some med gear or know someone who does and she' off the hook. Because I want nothing to do with the gathering place of Imasi's sick and dying."[/SIZE]

[SIZE=medium]Uta's chuckle was a welcomed sound as it came across the comm system. "Yeah, good idea. I'll tell her I have some rudimentary equipment, and I'd rather take my chances using that on you, than drop you into that mire of disease."[/SIZE]

"Great I have some calls to make before the meeting tomorrow, Lets get outta here." Ordo said relief evident in his voice. He was not overly fond of the force, but he had no qualms about being healed, and he trusted Uta with his life.

[SIZE=medium]Ordo sat quietly as they approached the MedCenter. The building was large and of a similar style as the rest of the city but with obvious differences. The roof was covered with air conditioning units and vital systems for powering air scrubbers. The large transparisteel front was well built and looked clean, other than the speeder that was jutting out from the lobby area. The scene was grizzly, the sick patrons were crying and screaming in what appeared to be various stages of shock the medical staff scurried from one person to the next treating those most seriously injured first. The front desk was in shambles, corpses littered the floor a blue Twi’lek lay awkwardly to one side while his head was several feet away, it open eye frozen in eternal terror. Had Ordo not seen battle before he would have been in shock like the other beings staring at the terrible sight, but as it was this wasn’t the first and would likely as anything not be the last time he saw gross injustice and brutality. His only hope was that if he was able he could stop it from happening unnecessarily. [/SIZE]

"Considering that there is a quarantine in effect,” Uta began saying to Lir initiating the ruse they had discussed to get as far from the MedCenter as possible, “I think that I would prefer to keep my vod out of that cesspool. I have some rudimentary equipment, and would rather take my chances with that, than with a place full of death."
The diminutive Defel shrugged a motion that briefly brought her into existence, “Back to the Port?” Lir seemed satisfied as long as her record was not tarnished with a lost hunter she would be satisfied. They began to turn around when Uta began motioning for Lir to hold on. As he finally, noticed the carnage that was once the quaint MedCenter patient drop off and lobby area.

“Actually wait a minute, this doesn’t look good. I want to check it out" Uta said focusing on the scene before him.

Though the destruction was evident that the terrible event that must have taken place was over and things were already calming down. The security personnel were on site. The fact that they were taking statements and not firing blasters was a clear indication he could do nothing to better the situation other than satisfy his own curiosity. Ordo had no need for another investigation when he felt he still had a more pressing one to get under way.

In response to Uta’s request Lir pulled up, pulled a 225 out of a cubbyhole in the front of the speeder, and got out following Uta. Ordo reluctantly followed suit, he could hardly let the two warriors walk into even potential danger while he sat on his shebs, watching. Ordo moved to take a left flanking position hanging back a few steps behind Uta allowing the double XL Mandalorian to take point as they approached. Interested, Ordo watched as a Doctor approached a man who had fallen down beside the speeder; she was carrying a large needle and looking intent on sticking the poor man with the instrument. After a moment, she said something Ordo could not hear and walked away leaving the man lying there alone. As Ordo watched, the medical teams move about he noticed his vod abruptly pulled his Relby out of its holster and discreetly rested it ready to lift and fire. Ordo reacted dropping his hand down to his DY-255 and began scanning the area for threats. Uta was a force user, and could sense things Ordo simply could not. However, nothing happened and Uta seemed to relax enough to show he didn’t expect an immediate attack. Ordo couldn’t imagine what it was like to feel things through the force he had his gut and instinct coupled with experience in various lines of work to aid him, not some mystic energy, and as far as he was concerned, it was rather better that way.

Shortly after assessing, the area Uta began moving to help administer first aid and assess injuries. Ordo had no interest in joining in, bedside manner wasn’t really on his resume, and his investigative nature won over so he started canvassing the gathered crowed eaves dropping looking for someone who seemed to no more than the rest. Ordo over heard a conversation off to his left about a member of the desk staff being Sith and a Jedi had come and put him down. ‘Not likely’ Ordo continued meandering. “He just sped up rammed the building, and jumped out swinging.” A man was telling another to Ordo’s left rear. Ordo turned taking in the two who were speaking The “Man” was a Togruta, tall and slender with sharp fangs common to his species, while the other was an older Cathar woman, with light tan fur that had begun to gray around the face and chin .

The Cathar was obviously acquainted with the Togruta, as she rested her hand on his forearm as she gasped at his story. Ordo listened closely as the man conveyed his tail pausing only to assure her he told the truth. He even mentioned that the man at the speeder had fired streams of lightening from his fingers at the rampaging Jedi in clone trooper armor. ‘That’s why the doc went at him with the big needle; she was going to eliminate him as a threat. Maybe she looked at him a figured he had enough to deal with.”

Satisfied with that, he moved closer to the Imasi police, hoping to catch some of what was being said. He did not hear it all but he ascertained that the Jedi was sedated and rushed to a room inside the hospital, and the doc was evading the request that he be produced. Ordo felt he knew enough to be satisfied, and started heading back to the floater. He cut his external speakers ad commed Uta again.

"Vod sound like some Forcie, No offense, went nuts and started hacking the desk staff apart before finally being put down. Now he's missing inside the center." Ordo said as Uta was doing his best to help. "Vod you hear me?"
"Yeah, Yeah, I hear you." Uta replied over the comm, sounding somewhat distracted. "Missing? As in still at large?"

"No, inside the center on a stretcher. The authorities are trying to get him, now." Ordo replied.

"Alright, he's contained it seems, and he's their problem." Uta said irritation seeping into his voice. "I'm getting nowhere fast on this quarantine and illness. And I don't want to be here all that much longer - they don't even have a treatment for this epidemic. Let's track out of here." Uta was right this was high water and Ordo did not feel like being beyond his depth. Uta stood and began walking back from the MedCenter to the floater before continuing "And vod, it apparently manifests itself as flu-like, with neurological symptoms, hallucinations, and all sorts of things. Whatever that means. So, if it looks like I'm going to go nuts. You put me down hard and fast." Flu-like? Hallucinations? It sounded like a long night of Tihaar and an early wake up, but he knew his Vod was serious, and he seemed to think this carnage was the result of a hallucinating Jetiise, with overzealous jetiise’kad.

“You have my word Vod," Ordo replied. He hated the thought of killing his vod, but to preserve Uta’s honor he would do what he must, "And I agree we need to get moving now."

They all reboarded the floater and made the steady trip back to the starport. Ordo thought, about the scenes he had witnessed today the Ondyts, the stone pens, and the MedCenter. It seemed Ordo had picked a bad place to blow off steam, or a good one depending on how you looked at it. He forced himself to refocus. There was the matter of the Eopie lead he had gained from Lian to be followed up on. As if on cue his datapad vibrated, which indicated Ordo had a message. It was Crossfire Ordo’s custom R3 unit. Crossfire explained that it had observed a small sensor droid scanning Ordo while Ordo looked around the outside of the YT-1300 your lucky day, and dropped a lead about Ordo’s identity in an attempt to aid Ordo’s bluff.

Did you scan the droid? Ordo typed back the question.

Yes the astromech replied, a highly modified sensor droid. It is registered to one Bane Kayjer, a known Corellian smuggler.

All right good work keep me posted for more information Ordo typed back noting that registering the droid was probably one of the smugglers few legitimate acts.

As they pulled up to the Starport Ordo got out and said his farewells to Lir before walking with Uta into the starport.

"That 1300 in berth 3 is where Lian said some Eopies were loaded. My R3 unit said he saw a sensor droid scanning me while I was looking around out side. Chances are the droid and the ship belong to the same person; a smuggler, named Bane Kayjer and I’m willing to bet he has no real interest in what he’s doing, other than getting paid. I intend to find out more if I can about the pilot."
Ordo said to Uta pointing toward the smugglers ship with his Bowcaster.

"Smugglers, Can't they just stay legit?" He asked rhetorically. His bilious tone denoted his irritation. "There's a direct way to find out more. We go up and say 'hi'. With an explosive charge or two." Uta says as he fingers the pouch holding one of said sapper charges, "If he's got the eopies, then he may very well be mired in those herders deaths."

"I can't think of a better way. Tonight when it's quiet we'll see what is going on with our friend" Ordo nodded toward berth three.

"I was thinking more along the lines of walking up to the ship, knocking on the door and quickly planting two or three charges to blast through the hatch. Then I figure we board your ship, and I use the Force to heal you.” Uta said simply as if it was the most logical course of action in the world.

"That may attract too much attention." Ordo said restraining himself from saying 'let’s do it'.

If they blow the hatch, the ISD would be on them in no time and with the sensor droid monitoring the ship their chances of surprising the smuggler were quite slim. Ordo didn’t need any attention that would result in processing his information into even this planets log. Anything more than landing and take off and he would have either bounty hunters or Eff and her ‘friends’ bearing down on him. He’d kept out of the galactic lime light for a long time and he planned on keeping it that way if he could. A brief image of the male ondyt’s eyes locked in a hate filled gaze, knowing its mate was dead crossed Ordo’s mind. Ordo wanted to storm the ship strap one of the charges between Tayjer’s knees and start asking questions, but this wasn’t the time or place for it. Ordo had credits and if the smuggler was like any he knew, and coming from Corellia he knew a lot, he could be bought. No, customer would be worth more than a few thousand creds. All Ordo had to do was get Uta to agree. Ordo and his Vod decided grudgingly to put off the encounter with the smuggler until a more convenient time opting instead to try and heal up, before the meeting Sil had called at the government house. Ordo once again boarded his YT-2000, inspecting the boarding ramp as he went up to ensure no ‘surprise’s were waiting, he took note that the ship was slowly being overtaken by the red Imasi dust that seemed to cling to everything. He would definitely want to give it a thorough lubricating as soon as he could make time.

Ordo settled into position according to Uta’s instructions and the healing trance began. Ordo didn’t slip into a dream but he wasn’t quite conscious either. He saw images of his once fiancé. She was in some sort of clear container that pulsed with energy she was unconscious it seemed. Their was a huge male figure in a heavy engulfing cloak that moved about staring at Bria inside the electrical cage. Then he saw someone he recognized. The tall blond human female was unmistakable. It was Eff, as if hearing Ordo’s thoughts she turned looking about as if she could feel his presence. “Ordo?” she said “I have her, Mandalorian.” The deep resonant voice from his dream said as Ordo was thrown again into the mist from before.

Ordo woke abruptly the next day at 0500 hours and began his morning rituals, the pain from the Ondyt fight completely washed away by the force when his Vod had finished healing him. He didn’t know exactly when Uta left but he had at some point gone back to his ship. Ordo assumed it was just in his mind but even some of the old scars that marked his face and body looked faded. Ordo moved through several stances of a kata, before turning to endurance training, but nothing took place before a good cup of caff. Ordo had finished his drills and training at about 0600, and stopped to eat breakfast. His heart was pounding in his chest from the flurry of activity that he had just put himself through. He focused his thoughts and calmed his breathing readying himself for his final kata. He lifted his Rykk blade and stared into its reflective surface, the scared hard faced man he saw stared back with steely grayish green eyes. He needed to be in complete control of his emotions if he had to put down a force user and he was concerned with the number of them present in such a small city. He practiced his technique of ‘no prisoners’, which was designed to give a darksider no emotions to feed off and provide a lightsider no insight to his next move. “No prisoners” he said to the man in the reflection before he began slowly tensing and flowing into a defensive position, holding the blade in both hands while he pointed the tip down at the deck of his cargo bay.

He completely emptied himself of emotions even the beast deep inside him, that was at the greatest depth of his emotions, was quieted. Ordo swung the blade up at a sharp angle until it rose over his head then spun on his front foot bring it back down cutting the air in an X pattern. Spinning the blade in an aggressive series of circles he whiled forward the blade moving quickly changing directions in mid swing regularly, which was designed to throw off opponents, he pushed and pushed himself forcing his now burning muscles to more speed and heavier strikes. The whole time he had only one solitary thought ‘take no prisoners’, he repeated the phrase over and over as he finished his Rykk blade kata. Panting Ordo sat down where he stood on the cold durasteel deck plating. He would never be able to defeat a jetiise’kad with a Rykk blade but he could try. As he was sitting there his longtime companion and constant antagonist R3 arrived, moving as fast as his wheeled feet could take him.

The little droid beeped so rapidly that Ordo almost didn’t catch it. Then it whirred around and sped back to the cockpit. Ordo was so shocked that the little droid had no off hand quip, he jumped up immediately and ran after it. Once in the cockpit the droid brought a string of data up on a holoprojector highlighting a string of code in a subroutine that made very clear the starport was scheduled to detonate at exactly 0900 hours. Ordo had to move fast, there were many ships in the starport and he knew he had to get a warning to as many as possible. Ordo ran out of his ship wearing only his Kama his bare feet sending up clouds of dust as he moved. His scared chest and back were sweaty and his equally scared face was turning red as he sprinted to where Lian stood. Ordo’s large dark black clan tattoo on his left shoulder and his red and black family tattoo on his right, flexed as he pumped his arms skidding to a stop near Lian. Her lovely eyes widened in her beautiful green face, as she took in the sight of the broad shouldered, heavily muscled Mando rushing toward her.

“Lian crossfire just found a subroutine that has set the starport to blow in two hours, get your beautiful green body out of here and get these ships in the air so I can stare at you later." Ordo said as he ran over to Lian "I'm going to warn some on my way back to my ship.

As Ordo turned to run to the nearest ship, yet another YT-1300 painted midnight blue, Lian grabbed Ordo’s wrist and with wide eyes said. "Show me."

Ordo rushed her over to his ship racing up the boarding ramp and down the corridor to his R3 unit ‘crossfire’ and showed her the still highlighted strings of code.

"Now do you trust me enough to listen?" Ordo said as he started his engines and commed Uta to warn him. Lian scanned the data turned and rushed off the Jai’galaar with only a nod to show she believed him.

"Crossfire forget what I said about the memory wipe." Ordo said to the droid "and try to get me through to Ikalur, please we need to talk."

Ikalur does pick up, with an, "Ikalur."

As Ordo was about to reply to Ikalur Lian’s voice burst over the starport loudspeakers.

"Taras City Starport, this is Lian. Get your ships, get out. It's likely the starport will be blown off the map in about an hour and half. No time for hesitation or doubts here, get on your ship, get out. If starport staff can help you, let us know. If you've got stupid questions or just want to whine, that's what your mother's for. Don't call us. IF you have cargo in the port you can expect that we're moving it out now, again, don't call about it or I'll leave it. Got it. Good. Get the kriff out of here."

"This is Ordo, what is going on. The government is up to something and the spaceport is going to blow in an Hour and a half. I need details. I don't like not knowing Ikalur, and we both know Sil will have every pilot here meeting him to get their ships or their services and we both know who he'll target." Ordo said as calmly as possible as he lifted off from his dirt patch and pointed his ship in the direction of the out skirts of Taras city.

"The spaceport too? I've heard that they're targeting the MedCenter, the HoloCenter and NU. It's not the government Ordo. It's an invasion. Sil is going to beg help of anyone who will listen, anyone who is still well. Oh, I don't doubt he'll take advantage if he can to stick a knife in NU, but he's not our biggest problem right now." Ikalur paused considering the situation for a moment then continued, "I don't think you should go to that meeting. They may target the Government House as well."

"An Invasion. Alright do you need protection at NU?" Ordo asked with concern, even as he cursed himself for being soft toward women "If not I need to find somewhere to regroup."

"I called from home when I found out, and the building should be clear by now. I don't trust any public place . . . you could come here." Ikalur said

"On my way," Ordo said turning The Jai’galaar back toward the city.

Y4 Day 262 0900 AM

Ordo banked left pulling the freighter around and headed back toward Taras. From a distance he could see areas that once held prominent buildings but now held only rubble and in a few minutes the Taras starport would be one of them. Ordo did not know exactly why he had accepted Ikalur’s offer of hospitality, and he wasn’t entirely sure what he would say or do when he got there, but something had to be done even if he were the only one to do it. Ordo did not know who these invaders were but he knew they had stopped, if they weren’t he may never find Bria, or find out who had taken her.

His Gold armor longed for the day he could find the ones who had taken his dear one, and the grey armor he had made feared the thought that it may leave its locker. Ordo shook himself physically, one thing at a time Ordo, fight the fight in front of you first.

As Ordo approached the city he saw the bright flash of an explosion to his right. He checked his chrono. 0900 I hope Uta got out. Ordo saw the debris and the smoke rise from the starport, he wasn’t a great judge of explosions but if anything survived it was damaged and would need major repairs. Good thing that droid was monitoring the starport systems.

Ikalur’s building came into view and Ordo deftly maneuvered the 1300 into an open landing space. Ordo went through standard landing procedures. He called up displays of internal and external readouts and ensured his ship was in order.

“Crossfire run diagnostics on the ship and talk to the computer I want no surprises when we leave.” Ordo said, “If we have to fight these invaders, I wouldn’t want some little thing to get us scrapped.”

Crossfire beeped an affirmative and whistled a string of binary that Ordo didn’t quite catch before turning and extending his complink appendage to the ships port. Ordo headed back to his training area and packaged his gear into his footlockers and put on his kute, the jumpsuit his armor attached to. I may draw some attention up here in Mandalorian style armor, maybe discretion would be better.

Ordo put on his blue workers overalls and a cap, and then took the uncertain walk toward Ikalur’s apartments.

Ordo arrived at the door and rang the buzzer. He was greeted not by the lovely Chiss executive but a well maintained protocol droid. The droid was a right at Ordo’s height and had a pleasant, if mechanical ring to its voice, and judging by the speed of the response to his ring had been waiting for guest.

"Oh, Captain Ordo. If you will follow me, sir.”

Ordo followed the droid into the sumptuous apartments; his workers coveralls carrying a small backpack over one shoulder and a DL-44 low on his hip. He looked more like hired maintenance than Mandalorian, the only thing that may have given him away was his scared visage and his close military style hair cut. He tried to hide his approval of the décor, not wanting to completely lose a hard earned reputation as an ‘ornery warrior’ by giving more than needed attention to the luxurious dwelling. Ordo entered the living area, which was all done in crèmes, whites and tans, and was pleased to see a silver caf service that sat on a low table before a crème nerfhide sofa. Ordo noticed a Holoprojector positioned on the same table, and above it, an image of a species He was unfamiliar with.

The being was a pale shimmering white, with large, silvery lidless eyes and a gaping lipless mouth. Is that some kind of new fish?

Ordo looked up to see Ikalur enter the room from the other direction; flawlessly coiffed, as always it seemed and wearing a jumpsuit covered by a sheer short-sleeved knee length wrap In a stunning red that matched her eyes and was belted in black. Ordo was awestruck for a moment as the beautiful Chiss woman walked to the sofa and sat while her droid poured her a cup of Caf.

"This," she said without preamble, “Is what Sil will be showing to his audience."

She leaned forward and her black hair caught the light and sent Ordo’s thoughts spinning to Bria whose hair had seemed to catch the light in the same way. She hit the switch at the base of the projector, which forced Ordo to collect his wit and focus on the ugly alien’s lipless mouth. The mouth went into constant motion, opening and closing, fishlike before it began to speak.

“Imasi. We are the Ikrat." The flat, hollow, and shrill voice grated from the creature. "Surrender or die. We have turned father against son and son against father, mother against daughter and daughter against mother, herder against the herded, ill against doctors, doctors against ill. We have brought your mighty ones to their knees and murdered your future. We have given power to those that would do our bidding and you turn on each other like sharks. Your weak bodies suffer and stop at our whim. Choose life and keep living. Surrender. Or die."
When the message was done, Ikalur flicked it off.
“They have a ship in orbit now, no word from Imasi Station and you can add IPD Headquarters to the targets that have been successfully hit. NU is lending our small fleet to the endeavor and hoping that Sil can find pilots for the ships at least." She picked up her cup. "Seems a rather hopeless cause."

After the recording Ordo looked at Ikalur and nodded to the image of the being on the holoprojector it's lidless, lipless face staring back.

"These beings maybe advanced but they are vulnerable. That is why they did not attack directly. The dust here would probably dry them out. See," Ordo, pointed at the eyes. "No lids and they referenced sharks; any other predator could have fit the analogy. They are probably from a watery or at least damp environment. In addition, if they have only one ship that is cloaked, they likely as anything rely on their technological edge rather than straight military power. If we could get aboard their ship, we could likely convince them to either die or leave quickly. The trick would be getting the cure for the disease out of them."

"Perhaps," she agreed thoughtfully. Then with a slight quirk of her lips that nearly approached a smile, "You make defeating them sound easy. The cure . . . would be in their computers. And if they are so fragile, perhaps they are afraid, fearful."Ikalur responded "Even if they are defeated, without the cure, we may all die here. Or worst case scenario, they are defeated, and some maniac leaves Imasi taking the illness with him to other worlds."

Ordo nodded his agreement. "Make no mistake, these Ikrat, have coordinated well; take out key structures, weaken the people, and create fear and confusion. And with out knowing the class of ship they have or it's armament, we simply can't know for sure." Ordo paused calculating before continuing. "If they are vulnerable to hot or dry environments and if we can damage their ships environmental controls we could force the cure out. There is, however, no real way of knowing. I cannot imagine what they would want with Imasi. This planet is out of the way, no major hyperspace lanes that I know of hit here, so it is not that strategically important. They may be testing the waters, so to speak." Ordo moved to pour himself some caff, and then he realized he was a guest and looked at Ikalur. "May I?"

"Please. I was distracted." Ikalur paused a moment and thought before she continued "The test so far is a resounding success. If it doesn't stop here, we're in trouble."

Ordo poured himself some caf, and removed the cap he was wearing; his grayish green eyes squinted slightly as he tried to hatch an effective plan. He took a drink of the rich dark liquid in his hand, and looked into Ikalur's eyes. "Well, as beautiful as you are, and as tempted to stay and enjoy your company as I am, something has to be done. Ordo shrugged and looked away from Ikalur's fetching eyes and to the still frozen Image on the holoprojector, "Time is something we don't have. If you need pilots I can be one, if not I'll fly after the ship myself and see if I can cause enough damage to give them pause. I don't know what else to do."

"Something," she agreed as a small crease appeared between her eyes. "I wish I could do anything nearly so proactive. I'm no pilot."

"You never know what you could do, if you gave it some thought." Ordo said eyeing her again this time, appraising her.

She was slender, but not frail. She could hold her own if she was taught properly.

"How are you at computers or slicing?" Before she could answer. Ordo added, "You've also helped already with your hospitality, and supporting the troops is as important as being one. I have been on my own for a long time, and a little friendly help means a lot."

She gave him a startled look, which then turned thoughtful. "I'm no pro," she admitted, "By a long shot. But . . . I've committed at least two acts of computer based industrial espionage, so not utterly hopeless either. But I've never piloted even a small spacecraft, nor am I proficient with any sort of weaponry." Her tone was not apologetic or evasive. Simply informative, which made Ordo all the more confident that hidden under her beautiful cold exterior there lay a strong fighter, she just needed to be drawn out.

Ordo looked at Ikalur considering the options “I have special cargo holds below the deck plating. We could get into position fire an escape pod and hide while they search for us then we could find their computer terminal between you and my R3 unit we could have a chance. If we run into trouble leave it to me, I may be able to find a few others to help. Maybe Sil would have some men." Ordo Grinned "and you could enjoy my charm and good looks for a while longer."

Her eyes fell and she sighed. She glanced back up and nodded, and conceded a small quirk of her mouth at his last words. "Let me change into something a bit less shoot-me-dead-red," she said rising. She was gone three minutes and reemerged in grey and black.

With a nod, she said, "I'm ready."

"Oya Ikalur!" Ordo said with a grin "let’s get you a blaster. Anything in my stock is yours to take."

Ikalur's grin would barely count as a smile on most women, but she offered it to Ordo. Together the two boarded Ordo’s ship Ordo
looked at Ikalur then produced several blasters.

"These should suit you," He said appraising her once again.

She looked at them as if unsure before picking up an ELG-3A which she held somewhat awkwardly.

"Here let me show you some basics. May I?" Ordo motioned to adjust her grip and show her how the blaster functioned. After they were both satisfied he took her to the cockpit and introduced her to Crossfire.

The little droid couldn’t help but let a series of bleeps and whistles out regarding her figure and asked if she is a droid.

“Chiss” Ikalur said causing Crossfire to beep a swooning sound.

Ordo opened the comm. And tried several signals. He leaned back in the nerfhide seat, which groaned a little less than usual due to his lack of armor, and told Ikalur "I can't get Sil on the comm. I was hoping to find a few others to get on the crew so we can up our chances of finding a cure and making it out. Any thoughts?"

“I do." She said as she pulled her commlink out and checked her datapad then spoke in to the device, "Captain Zalo, this is Ikalur . . . I wonder . . . that is, I imagine you will be wanting to do something about the Israt and I have a Mandalorian, and a ship, but he needs a crew. My first thought was you."

Ikalur handed Ordo the commlink and he introduced himself, "Captain Zalo, I am Ordo of Clan D'ael'mor of clan Ordo. I am here with Ikalur. I have a plan to get aboard and slice these Israt computers and bring the cure back, but I need a crew, so far, only Ikalur and I are on board. Will you help?"

"It's always nice to meet another Mandalorian," Zalo said cheerfully. "Seems my ship was damaged in the spaceport's destruction, so it's not flyable. I have another here who would also be interested in dealing with this invasion force? Where would I meet you?”

"I'm aboard my ship," Ordo replied with just a hint of relief in his voice, "I am at Ikalur's apartment landing pad. you can meet us here. I will explain my plan when you arrive and any that can help will be welcome."

"I'll be there shortly then with a friend, Zalo out."

As Ordo finished his conversation with Zalo his own datapad vibrated and showed a message form an unexpected friend. As he read the words he resolved that no matter what the cure or at least a treatment for the Imasi plague had to be found.

“Rhan here. Regarding incident concerning a wide spread illness. No needs to report to me or respond but be sure before you leave you, make sure whatever is plaguing this planet does not reach any Mandalore protected space.” The message Rhan relayed to Ordo, was timed so well, Ordo was taken aback for a moment. Maybe the force is involved in this. Ordo held the belief that the Force was nothing more than the means the Manda used as it interacted with the galaxy and that although the force was powerful it ultimately emanated from The Manda and was subject to It. So, the fact that a crew was coming together so well, felt like evidence to Ordo that the Manda was behind them.

Ordo checked his datapad and responded to his former commander’s message, what was he doing here?

"Vod Rhan. Oya, Manda ner vod. I have a crew and we are planning a strike to get the cure and end this invasion now. This threat will be stopped here or I will go to the Manda fighting."

Day 262 Midday

Ordo sat in the cockpit as he had been going over diagnostics and readouts from his R3 unit who had run a scan on Ikalur, before he whistled again and ran off to engineering. Ordo looked out the view port and saw two human males approaching; one was tall wearing a black trench coat that was buttoned down the front, and the other was wearing a midnight blue set of Corellian powersuit armor. I wonder if his ship is the midnight blue one. Ordo walked passed Ikalur and nodded toward the ‘common area’ he had fashioned for guest and crew. She followed calmly and sat on a nerfhide bench near the caf machine, as Ordo continued to the boarding ramp to greet the newcomers. Ordo pulled his DL-44 out and held it behind his back as he walked down the ramp, and stopped to lean against the hydraulic strut that lowered and raised the platform.

"You must be Zalo and Co. welcome aboard the Jai’galaar. We are gathering in the common area, the Caf is brewing and when it's done we'll flesh out the plan." Ordo’s deep voice sounded just a bit gruff, but he hoped it was otherwise nonthreatening.

"Yes, I'm Zalo, and this is my associate Dax ya," Zala said as he gestured a gloved hand towards the one in a midnight blue colored powersuit.

Satisfied Ordo turned and walked back up the ramp into the ship, and holstered his DL-44 as he went. The ships polished durasteel deckplates rang under the men’s feet with the old sweet sound that Ordo held as dear as they walked through the corridors.

"Nice to see you again, Miss Ikalur," Zala said as he bowed his head slightly.

Ikalur nodded to Zala but you'll gave Dax a raised eyebrow and a neutral glance.

The man in the midnight blue armor grinned and looked back at Ikalur "Why hello lovely, fancy meeting you here".

"Mister Ya." Ikalur responded dryly in a way that barely warranted being called a greeting. Ordo laughed to himself, and tried not to grin outwardly.

"So the plan..." Zala said after a moment.

Ordo poured himself a cup of caf and gestured to the rest gathered that they are welcome to do the same.

"The plan is fairly simple. We fly out of the gravity well as if we are trying to escape the planet. They will likely try a capture us and tractor us in. When that happens we'll hide in some smuggling compartments under the port and starboard deck plating near the cargo bay. When we hide, R3 will fire an escape pod and hide in engineering. Once aboard we will need to make our way to a terminal and try to slice into their system to steal the cure, and then try to disable their tractor beams. When that's complete we can get Ikalur back on the ship, while I look for some vital systems to destroy, but I won't start until I see Ikalur back on the ship. If I can make it back to the ship in time after sabotaging their ship, I will leave with you. If not I will try to steal anything they have and come down alone. I am confident there will be heavy resistance, but they seem to be aquatic or amphibious so they may be weakened if we can hinder their environmental controls. I know that there are a lot of what ifs, but I think it could work." Ordo looked down at his Datapad and typed out a message. "We may have the Honor it seems to have one of my commanders along, I didn't know he was here but Vod Rhan may need a pick up. Any questions?"

Ordo stood in front of the assembled group a beautiful Chiss woman, two freelancers, and a droid. He took a long drink from his MandalMotors mug and sat on the counter/workbench waited for their response.

Ikalur’s mouth tightened at Ordo’s words about her being safe before he saw to the sabotage. She likely thought he it was because of her gender, and in truth that had been part of it, but Ordo also knew she was at least partly known on Imasi and would be trusted with the cure far more than a Mandalorian who no one had heard of and two freelancers.

Her voice was lovely though not exactly warm as she spoke, "We should wait and take off with the main taskforce. If they scan the pod and decide it's empty, they'll come looking for us. If they have something else to think about, it may slow them down a bit."

"Rhan, huh?" A slow grin spread itself across Zala's face. "It'd be nice to see him again," then he added "But no. There do seem to be a few things that could go wrong with your plan, but it's nothing that couldn't go wrong anyway with something so sketchy. However you shouldn't try to go out a hero by yourself," a slight still grin present on his face. "I'm under the impression we need to destroy this invasion force or at least make them realize Imasi is protected and retreat. I was an Imperial commander at one point, so I'm a soldier. I'm not going to run."

Ordo nodded his approval obviously, impressed "Mandalorians have no word for hero. We view protecting those who come under our care as a duty; we only have a word for coward. So that said I just felt it would be wrong for me to volunteer you against your will. So you'll not get a complaint from me if you stay and help. If Ikalur wishes to stay, also we can have R3 pilot to the surface as long as the cure gets to the sick ones. The cure is paramount to this mission."

"How do we know they just won’t outright shoot us?" Dax said.

"I'm guessing that's a risk we'll have to take. Is there anything you'll need? I'm not sure how badly the spaceport was hit and whether our ship is destroyed or not...but I did have some thermal detonators and some sensor and lockbreaking equipment," Zala asked Ordo.

Ordo replied to all. "Detonators and lock breakers are a good start, if we get separated we may need them for whom ever can use them best."
Ordo looked to each one pausing a moment on each “We can go about this however is decided upon by everyone. Unlike Zala, I'm no commander, I was in R&D. If we go now alone we run the risk of getting shot down if we go with the main assault force we run the risk of being shot down. The ship is black to help us sneak up on the enemy but I make no guarantees." Ordo shrugged and took the last drink of his caf. "I'm ready when you are. Vod Rhan will be waiting at the Medcenter this afternoon. I'm under orders that I take him along other than that I will be the pilot, I need a Co-pilot, and gunners would help if we go with the main group. Other than that you can make do what you like just tell me what you decide." Ordo calmly picked up a pile of black armor and walked toward the cockpit followed closely by Crossfire and a little less closely by Ikalur.

“I think we should let the main force distract them, and try to sneak aboard or let ourselves get "captured". Other than that, we should get started immediately, cure's waiting," Zala said, before he glanced back at Dax. "I would like to go back to the remains of the starport, see if my ship is functioning and get some gear from there then, and be back before you pick up Mr. Rhan"

"Agreed." Ordo said over his shoulder as he went "See you soon as you get back, cargo area is free to use to prepare what you need." the little droid beeped as he followed.

After just a few moments Ordo’s comlink beeped, and a familiar voice came across, and filled Ordo with vigor he had not realized was lacking.

"Ner’ Vod? This is me Rhan, I advice you to see how your actions in this invasion and protection of this planet will reflect to others regarding relations with Mandalore. If you have made promises that you must keep I will not order you to deter them nor will I hinder your actions. But be it as it may as a Commanding Officer I must take responsibility for any interactions and possible repercussions this might or might not affect Mandalore as a whole.” Rhan paused briefly and sighed, “And I do have one order for you ner'vod. Tell me who else will be accompany that is apart of Mandalore, and I insist that I join you on your way to Manda but more so finding a cure." His voice sounded almost excited at the last words. Ordo did not know what brought Rhan to this backwater planet but, it was evident he wanted a cure as much as anyone did.

"Uta Wan Murono, was with me but I have not been able to reach him since leaving the starport this morning a 0800. I have three atruiise, one droid and myself so far. A Chiss woman Ikalur and two humans named Dax and Zala." Ordo paused as his own excitement was growing, before he continued. "You just tell me where to pick you up Vod and I'll be honored to have you join me."

Day 262 afternoon

"I am at the MedCenter, I will ask more questions when I see you ner'vod. Drive safely," Rhan replied.

"Oi, and this Zalo wouldn't happen to have a first name of Athrin? Kinda tall male? Seems like an Imperial?" Rhan added.

Ordo responded "Yes that is the Zalo I have with me. Imperials are a kind of scrawny lot though Ner Vod. Is he tough enough?"

"Tell that to his face and tell me how tough he is, just be sure I'm there with a MedKit though when you do,"
Rhan said, masking his laugh with a cough. If Rhan thinks that much of Zala, that’s more than enough for me. Ordo made notes in his head again storing the enumeration of events and cataloguing the information he had received until now. Just in case.
When Zala returned to the cockpit Ordo had already donned his black Armor and was waiting in his new pilot seat. “Have a seat.” He said motioning to the co-pilot’s chair. Ikalur was still sitting quietly at the sensor station where she had sat as Ordo attached the Black Durasteel plates to his kute.
Ordo wasted no time, and took off for the Medcenter and his friend Rhan. As they approached Ordo looked at Zala and stood.
“Take the stick.” Ordo said as he tried to convey trust with his base voice.
The YT-2000 Jai’galaar made a soft landing at the Medcenter and Rhan approached. As Rhan drew closer Ordo lowered the boarding ramp. He grasped his Vod’s forearm firmly and smiled, "Vod Komo, Su Cuy'gar, welcome aboard the Jai’galaar. The Caf is still hot, and you're welcome to take any station that you want." Ordo laughed at Rhan’s comment about calling him Sir, and added,“We’re all Vode here, Ner Vod.”
Ordo then hurried to the cockpit as they all prepared to join the main battle group and the fight for Imasi.
(GM and Player approved all interactions)
As the small fleet rises off of Imasi and hits orbit, a fleet of fighters arrays itself in front of them, and then, as one, attacks. The Imasi fleet is outnumbered and outgunned, though the Ikrat have no discernible advantage in regards to speed or shields. The defenders find themselves hard pressed to defend anything but themselves. The target remains the larger ship, but finding it when it's cloaked isn't easy either.

It's only when some of the fleet do get close that the larger ship begins destroying them that it becomes easier to pinpoint. Crowding the vessel, as long as the Imasi defenders can do so without getting killed, eventually reveals the shape of it as the get beneath the field that is cloaking it. The ship is all white, long and slender, and ribbed with a defined pattern. At even intermissions four huge wheel-like edifices encircle the main body.

Docking bays are not easy to find, but they are there. It is as they finally find one that Uta shifts his hold on his A295 silently, to cover the others in the jai’galaar's cockpit. His finger tightens on the the trigger.

Day 262 AMish

Ordo watched through the view port of the YT-2000 Jai’galaar as the miss matched fleet of Imasi defenders rose from the surface of the dusty dirt ball of a planet and into the atmosphere.

It didn’t matter in the least to most of these people that their little epitome of dirtside planet was completely useless for much other than its tasty little fungi. This was their home. The place was dirty, dusty, inhospitable, and unwelcoming, but still home, yaim, and they would not sit and watch it fall. Ordo knew he would do the same for Manda’yaim and for that, this ragtag band had his respect.
The small crew he had managed to acquire was no less impressive. Three Mandalorians who would normally have charged for their services while off duty. Well maybe not Rhan, he is the chivalrous sort. A Chiss executive who only today learned the pointy end of the blaster goes at the other guy, an Imperial Pilot (according to crossfire’s digging), a former Imperial commander turned freelance, and last but not least the droid. None of whom had any idea when they came to the backwater world they would be fighting for it days later.
Ordo was lifting off when the guilt of singling Ikalur out got to him and he had to say something like an apology. Ordo glanced at Ikalur out of the corner of his eye and noticed that she looked at him in return. “I didn’t mean to offend you, when I insisted you be safe before, we start planting explosives.” Ordo looked straight ahead, as he continued, not allowing himself to tare his eyes away from the viewport to steal another look at his lovely crewmate, “you just remind me of someone that I have missed for a long time. It’s the way you carry yourself, and you’re all business approach to people. I just wanted to say sorry that’s all.” Ordo stared out the viewport as they flew, and thought of the last time he had seen Briikase and the strange dreams he had been having.
“There is no offense. Simply the knowledge that my presence is as mush a liability as asset. Perhaps more so.” Ikalur responded sounding matter of fact, as usual.
“Don’t talk like that.” Ordo said calmly, trying to sound instructive, rather than reproving, “I know you’ve never done anything like this before, but I have. If you start doubting, you’ll end up on my list of lost friends that have gone to the Manda, and I be reciting your name along with the others every morning and night.” Ordo looked back to Ikalur and made eye contact for emphasis on his next words. Her striking red gaze meeting his greenish grey eyes, unfalteringly, “you’re an asset, and that is all you should think.” Ordo tried to remain matter of fact but once again, care seeped through. I am going to have to work on that. Just in case.
She him a half smile, but said nothing.
They finally broke the atmosphere, and Ordo felt like as if he were finally at home. The blackness of space poked through with tiny points of light representing thousands and thousands of destinations, all of which were only a few calculations away. Ordo considered doing a few micro jumps and just leaving it all behind. Striking out to the next system and continuing his life. It was risky in a gravity well but hardly impossible. However, he could not simply run off when so many brave beings would fight and die leaving the galaxy to be harassed by these Israt. He would never forget how Atruiise fought while he ran off. The thought was ridiculous. Ordo’s mussing was interrupted by the sound of Dax at the gunner’s station.
“Contacts, up ahead where the ship should be. May I suggest we avoid the major fight? We are here for a more important reason than to dogfight.”
Ordo cringed at the thought of not fighting through the fighters that were closing on the main group.
"I hate missing the fighting Dax, but your right. We need to try and get that cure or treatment before they blow us up." Ordo replied slightly frustrated that he was skirting the battle, instead of plowing into it cannons blazing. Ordo looked to Athrun "I'm going to get some black behind us hold on."
Ordo was more animated than any of those present had seen him up until now. He loved flying. He lowered the inertial dampeners that normally kept everyone from being affected by G-forces of flight and yanked back hard on the steering yolk pulling them nearly perpendicular to their previous position, and did a quick roll for added amusement. His ship was like many others of it kind but he loved it just the same. Ordo was smiling from ear to ear, as he said, "This is your captain speaking, please keep your seats and tray tables in their upright and locked positions we may run into slight turbulence."
Zala looked partially startled as Ordo jerked the steering, and barely had enough time to grab onto his seat. The sudden movement of the roll however was enough to put pressure on him and keep him in his seat. He strapped himself in partially to protect himself from the next sudden movement.
"Next time warn me," Zala said with a slight grin himself. He pushed open his visor as he checked the scanners.
"These are just smaller capital ships. Getting to the main one might be a problem. If we can find it," Zala added as he looked up at the view screen. "Maybe in the back behind the support ships?" he said as he pointed at the scanner.
Ordo looked at the view screen and thought for a moment about his tactics training. He had trained briefly back on Corellia and then again in Mandalore academy. This made him confident that what Athrun said was their best bet.
"Dax? Do you see anything from where you’re sitting?" Ordo asked casually as if the last stand for a planet wasn't taking place just a short distance away. "I'm going to level out slowly so we don't draw too much attention. And try to get behind the battle where that flagship may be." Ordo leveled out gently and worked to keep just out of sensor range of the fighters as he moved to bypass the fighting and find the lead ship.
“I have an idea, it should work. Just give me a minute” Dax said.
Ordo waited following his course as the other man worked out his idea what ever it was. When Dax spoke again he sounded confident and at home.
“I guessed where the flagship was, and it paid off.” As the imperial spoke an image appeared on Ordo’s main view screen, “Those red dots are weapons being fired from the cloaked ship. Thankfully, what it fires is not cloaked. Assuming the weapons run the length of the ship, we are looking at a ship roughly 1,500 meters long, Or in other words Imperial Star Destroyer size.” Dax paused for a moment to catch his breath. “So we have the position of the target, now we just need to find the door. May I suggest we look for launching fighters?"
Ordo was impressed again at the quick thinking by the other man and did not have any qualms about acknowledging it. "Nice work Dax, Vor Entye." Ordo said, "Turning too. Mark point 2250 by point 6350. Keep your eyes peeled for fighters everyone." Ordo maneuvered the ship for maximum view of the location indicated by Dax. "Let’s hope they are too busy to see us coming."
Ordo noticed as Zala's eyes occasionally glanced up at the window, but he was glued to the scanners. Zala watched the scanners and Ordo could have sworn he smelled gear oil burning as the man’s eye darted back and forth over the screen.
"There," he said suddenly. "Fighters approaching at two o’clock."
Ordo looked up and right to see what Athrun was indicating. "I see them." Ordo said squinting slightly, "Dax, two fighters at your two. Is there any sign they see us or are they trying to flank the main group?" Ordo had begun slowly turning toward the cloaked ship if he hit the thrusters they could probably close the distance and destroy the fighters quickly but they would also be giving themselves away. On the other hand, they were getting close the cloaked ship and now they knew where it was. Ordo tensed as he prepared for either one, and said a silent prayer, just in case.
Ordo caught sight of Ikalur out of the corner of his eye as he was looking at the readouts and instruments "How are you holding up there, Ikalur?"
"I'm holding on." She replied as she griped her seat, and looked a little greenish.
Ordo kept from grinning although it was not easy and started adjusting his vector to intersect with the place Dax previously indicated as a possible location of the enemy vessel.
Dax focused intently on the fighters, they seemed not to notice the ship. “No, I think they are just flanking the main group.” Dax paused before he added “The heading they are on, if you were to reverse it, it leads back right to the middle of what we assume is the cloaked ship.” Dax put a redline on the vector and put it up on a main screen.
"That’s good enough for me. The trajectory seems right." Ordo said his hands flying over the instruments as he prepared to make a run on the cloaked vessel and find a docking bay. Ordo opened the internal intercom for a ship wide announcement. "Everyone, we are preparing to break for the cloaked enemy ship. I have the inertial dampeners on so you should be spared the G-forces but please hold on and make ready for evasive maneuvers this could get rough real quick."
Ordo waited for others to get set then made a down ward banking turn sending the Jai’galaar into a spiraling dive before flattening out under where the cloaked vessel should be and then hit the thrusters intending to come up underneath the enemy ship and find a docking bay or a soft point that they could cut through.
They had made a hard run at the ship, and if Ordo had not pulled up they would have probably made an unceremonious splatter mark on the behemoths hull, as the broke through the cloaking field and came face to face, well face to belly at least, with the massive vessel. It was long and slender like a torpedo with four equidistant edifices encircling it. The hull was bright white and smooth vaguely reminiscent of a Mol cal cruiser. They have color issues it seems. Ordo followed along the side of the ship keeping close enough to avoid most turbolaser-class weapons, I hope, but with enough room to turn if he found a docking bay.
Docking bays however were not easy to find. Ordo was getting ready to break off and look for an area that they may be able to clamp on to and cut a hole when an opening presented itself.
Ordo’s excitement grew and he pointed out the viewport at the small white walled opening. Ordo stood almost leaping from his seat to turn and adjust his deflector shields to full front as they angled toward the bay. As he reached up, he saw Uta standing in the entryway to the cockpit with his A-295 trained on the crew.
Ordo froze, his face lost all expression. He had dealt with a few force users in the past and knew they could sense things he simply could not but his gut told him something wasn’t right. This was not like Uta to just stand silently with a weapon trained on his allies. Ordo’s blood went cold, as the events of Imasi and his vod’s odd behavior came flooding into his mind. Ordo could barely speak when he looked at the blank T-shaped visor of his brother’s Buy’ce.
“Uta vod?” Ordo's voice came out deep, hollow, and broken as he watched Uta's finger tighten on the trigger.
Suddenly the Jai’galaar took a hit to the port deflector shield rocking the ship. At the same moment Uta fired.
Ordo tried to spin away from the blaster bolt, but was hit in the arm, which was better than the full blast to the chest that it would have been. The Ship spun toward the open docking bay and slammed into the side of the entrance as it entered, which did a fair bit of damage if the sparks from the deflector panel indicated anything. However, Ordo had no time to worry over it, Uta who had just a moment earlier had full advantage was now off balance enough for Ordo to retaliate and hopefully disarm his vod before things got any further out of hand. Ordo lunged at Uta, and kicked at the much larger Mando’ad’s legs intending to knock him off balance and follow through with a elbow smash to Uta’s head. Ordo's mind rushed to recite hyperspace calculatons, and fought down the apprehension of fighting his friend. Ordo had never had to use 'no prisoners' on a forcie before, and if it didn't help he may not live to again.

Uta jumps the kick and dodges the elbow, using his weapon as a Force club to push Ordo back into the ships control panels. Ikalur shoots at him, and he deflects that into the space Ordo is occupying. The shorter Mando has an instant to move and spare himself the hit, which may well hurt worse than the first one, or move and let the already damaged control panel take the hit instead. He lifts a fist and Ikalur is plucked from the floor. Her eyes go wide and and her mouth gasps for the air Uta's Force grip denies her. At the next hint of resistance or attack, he hurls the woman at the the person responsible. Then Uta turns, scrambling to get out, which takes him on a collision course with Rhan. As Rhan comes into sight the tall sentient pulls a thermal detonator.

Y13 Day 262 PM - Aboard Ikrat Ship.
Ordo fell back into the control panels and braced himself to launch back at the large Mando. Ikalur who was not accustomed to fighting force users turned and fired at Uta with impressive speed and dexterity for some one who only just recently learned to hold a blaster. The red bolt flashed into existence and shot toward Uta, leaving the unmistakable smell of superheated oxygen in the small cockpit, and was promptly redirected at Ordo. Ordo grabbed his helmet off the consol, he had intended to hit Uta with it (repeatedly), but got it up to his face in time to catch the bolt. The blaster bolt slammed into the side of the helmet and the helmet smashed hard into Ordo's face gouging his chin and smashing his lips into his teeth gashing them and loosening his poor defenseless chewing implements. When Ordo lowered his helmet, his face was a bloody mess and Ikalur was suspended in the air grasping her throat and gapping for air. He stepped toward Uta raising the bloody helmet and growling through bloody teeth.
“Put her down, Vod.” Ordo growled as he moved forward, though it likely wasn’t that clear.
Uta did not even look at Ordo, just violently tossed the gapping Chiss woman at him. Ordo barely had time to react catching the woman as she slammed into his chest. They both fell into the pilot’s seat, Ordo first and Ikalur on his armored chest. I should have been more specific.

He moved as quickly as he could, laying Ikalur in the seat before turning to race after Uta. He put his bloody helmet on his head, grabbed his Rykk Blade from the wall and pulled his DL-44 as he ran from the cockpit.
Ordo rounded the corner a few meters behind Uta who stood a short distance from Rhan. The taste of blood with its heavy coppery sweetness was on Ordo’s lips, and he let it run out refusing to swallow the precious liquid as he leveled his blaster at Uta and got ready to down his force-wielding friend.

Ordo did not hesitate; he just squeezed off three shots at Uta's back, thinking only of the need to end the fight before something worse could happen. The shots hit solidly, but did not seem to daunt the larger Mando. The smell of carbon and scorched oxygen hit Ordo like a hammer to the chest. His Vod who had saved his life and fought large mated ondyts with him was now trying to fight his way off the ship.
Flashes from the Medcenter and the grizzly scene that was the wake of another force user’s rampage raced into Ordo’s battered head. This was too much to be a coincidence; this had to be the work of the Imasi disease, Uta would not have ever opened fire on his vode, at least not with out warning. Like Ordo, Uta would not want to add to his list of dead vod by killing them, and Ordo had just shot his ailing brother in the back trying to put him down. Ordo’s stomach tightened into a knot he wanted to help his vod not kill him, the Ikrat on the other hand, they needed to experience pain, death by pain. Ordo clenched his jaw growling again inside his helmet, this would have to end here, or by the Manda, he would come back from the dead and eat the hut’uun alive, probably with netra’gal (tihaar is to fruity).
Ib'tuur jatne tuur ash'ad kyr'amur. Jare Ikrat entye ash’amur!
Ordo saw Rhan move from the other side of Uta hitting the wall at a quick sprint taking two steps along it and springing at Uta. Rhan’s knife-edge strike connected and sent Uta and Rhan both to the deck. The sound of the armor clad Duros striking the deck was at once like the clash of cymbals in a Corellian symphony and the bang of a hammer on a Mandalorian anvil. Ordo took a step ready to pounce and help Rhan, but halted briefly as Uta slammed Rhan into the ceiling using what must have been the force. Rhan started to move, pushing himself off the floor at the same time as Uta, and Uta promptly slammed him once again into the ceiling. I hope Rhan didn’t hurt my ceiling.
Ordo made a fast decision. Fights among families were some of the most vicious and as Mandalorians this was doubly so. Ordo moved to attack the big Mando before he could completely regain his footing. He sprinted at Uta and immediately went into the emotionless attack of 'no prisoners' releasing a snap kick at Uta's midsection. The kick connected and sent the bigger Vod skidding backwards before he crashed back down to the deck plates. Uta in well-trained Mandalorian fashion clawed out his Relby K-23 and began spraying the corridor with blaster fire as he tried to gain his footing. Ordo hit the deck a rolled to a knee then swept at his dear Vod’s Legs. As he did Rhan's glaive hit Uta in the shoulder, which stunned him long enough to go down as Ordo swept his feet out from beneath him.
Ordo could not wait for Uta to regroup and shot forward bringing a hammer fist strike downward at Uta’s buy'ce, hoping to knock him out so they could continue the mission. Ordo’s strike found home and the loud ‘thunk’ sound of his Vod’s helmet striking the durasteel was both sad and gratifying. Ordo hated fighting his vod and just could not get over the urge to close his eyes and wake up on Mandalore drinking and telling stories together instead of the current state of affairs.
Uta however, did not seem to be able to see how wrong the situation was and reached up wrapping a long fingered hand around Ordo’s thick neck. Then wasted no time at all and carelessly tossed Ordo against the bulkhead, which produced another much louder clang, before continuing his desperate escape.
Ordo struck the bulkhead shoulder first then his already battered head bounced like a wee ball of the polished durasteel wall of the corridor before he landed face first on the woefully scuffed deck plates. He laid there for just a moment before he forced himself up to take a knee. Ordo had fought some rough battles, but the only thing he could think of that could make this one tougher would be if Uta were a Wookie, because he had sure hit like one.
Ordo looked to Rhan as he began pursuing Uta.
“Tsikala, Ner vod?” Ordo asked as he turned to see if he could see the detonator, which would provide all the excuse he needed to have a very bad day, and even more excuse to give the invading shabla Hut’uun a very stern talking; to in Blasterese.
[SIZE=medium]Ordo watched as Rhan raced after Uta, his expression filled with determination and his eye brimming with anger. It was quite clear that the time for trying to incapacitate was over, in Rhan’s eyes, and some killing blows would have to be thrown. [/SIZE]

[SIZE=medium]Ordo wanted to race out with him and help take Uta down, but the thermal detonator Uta had been carrying needed to be found. Ordo looked about; the corridor he was in was beside the cockpit corridor and the cargo bay entrance. The sweat and blood mixed on Ordo’s face as he quickly scanned the area. The faint sounds of shots being fired from outside in the docking bay reached Ordo, and he was sure Uta had found some Ikrat soldiers. The smell of blaster fire still hung in the air from Ordo’s earlier shots as well as the carbon scoring on his helmet from the redirected ELG-3A bolt, which he had managed to avoid allowing to end his career permanently. Ordo’s eyes finally, after a few brief seconds that had stretched out to an eternity, fell on the stray thermal detonator that lay a mere three feet away from Ordo wedged in the doorway of the cargo bay. The flashing light, which indicated the detonator was armed and operational, flashed rapidly and Ordo knew that he was out of time. [/SIZE]

[SIZE=medium]For a moment time froze and Ordo could clearly see every detail of the corridor. The grey polished durasteel plating on the walls clearly reflected a broad shouldered man, in black Mandalorian power armor with blue symbols on the chest plate and shoulders. The black T-shaped visor of the armored figure stared back at Ordo, expressionless and cold, while the detonator flashed one last time. [/SIZE]

[SIZE=medium]The universe continued in slow motion as the surface of the detonator cracked revealing blazing white light within. The light broke out of the detonator followed by and orange wave of volcano like heat the raced outward like a fiery sun expanding within Ordo’s ship. As the detonator cracked, Ordo leapt through the air, desperately diving the short distance toward the cockpit corridor. This, however, was not Ordo’s best day, and the initial wave of deafening sound struck Ordo in mid dive flipping him into a roll and slamming him against the corner of the cockpit corridor entrance. [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]Ordo’s midsection hit the corner folding him to a 90 degree angle, and bouncing his legs and head against the durasteel walls. [/SIZE]

[SIZE=medium]The air in Ordo’s lungs left in a violent puff as he struck the wall, and Ordo lay on the deck gasping for air. The intense heat of the detonator could be felt through the armor as Ordo tested his limbs to see if he could move them, to his credit he could and did. Ordo stood up, albeit slowly, and surveyed the damage. Where the small orb had sat now was a large section of missing wall and floor, both of which were now ablaze. Smoke quickly filled the air with the acrid smell of electrical fire and melted wiring. Ordo looked to the bulkhead and grabbed the nearest fire extinguisher and began spraying the spreading flames. [/SIZE]

[SIZE=medium]“Crossfire, we have a fire! Help now!” Ordo yelled his voice aided by the helmets speakers. [/SIZE]

[SIZE=medium]The little astromech came whirring down the cockpit corridor whistling in alarm, and quickly began spraying the fire, the small extinguisher nozzle protruding from the front of his cylindrical frame. [/SIZE]

[SIZE=medium]The fire did not last long under the force of both extinguishers at once, but the damage was already done. Dozens of exposed wires had been damaged and piping for various systems were severed and vaporized leaving the remaining pipes to dump various fluids on the deck. The Jai’galaar would not recover from this quickly and it would take more than Corellian luck and the Manda to get the ship back to the planet while fighters and the capitol ship were operational. [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]“See what you can do for her Crossfire. I’ll go and check on Ikalur and then see about our friends.” Ordo said sullenly. [/SIZE]

[SIZE=medium]Ordo tried to jog to the cockpit and was quickly stopped by a shooting pain in his gut, Ordo stooped short grabbing his stomach area and wishing the ships emergency alarms would shut off. The hit he’d taken when he hit the corner of the entranceway had taken a greater toll than he’d thought and he knew he would likely need medical attention before to long. Ordo walked in to the cockpit to see Ikalur hunched over the ship consol vigorously trying to slice into the enemy ship’s system remotely. She didn’t look like the coiffed and proper executive he’d first met but other than being mussed and likely bruised she seemed uninjured. Ordo looked to the emergency controls and hit the kill switch for the alarms, then gave his attention to the scrolling list of damaged systems. Ordo took control of the readout and brought up the summery:[/SIZE]

[SIZE=medium]Emergency life support is at 50%
Sublight at 30%
Scanner and navigation are on
Lasers are at 40%, with one turret working
Inertial dampers and artificial gravity at 75%
Most other systems, including shields and hyperdrive are currently offline.[/SIZE]

[SIZE=medium]“Shabla Uta, this just got worse.”[/SIZE]

[SIZE=medium]Ordo turned to Ikalur who was evidently having no luck with the remote link and turned back to the readout. [/SIZE]

[SIZE=medium]"Things just got complicated, I'm going to try and buy some time, but we need to get moving before the whole ship comes calling."

Ikalur straightens and nods at Ordo’s assessment of the situation. "We need to bring Crossfire. His chances of figuring out the systems are greater than mine, I'm afraid." As Ikalur rose from the seat Ordo thought for a moment of his next maneuver. [/SIZE]

[SIZE=medium]“Crossfire, we need a hero in the cockpit now.” Ordo said into his helmet comlink, “I need you to help Ikalur, slice a system remotely.”[/SIZE]

[SIZE=medium]The little droid bleeped and whistled back. [/SIZE]

[SIZE=medium]“Yes, you would be a Hero to Ikalur. Now get up here and see what you can do.” Ordo said. It would have been funny at another time that the little droid had developed a liking for the woman, but Ordo would have to wait until later to do his laughing. [/SIZE]

[SIZE=medium]As the little droid rolled up, he spun in a little circle and tweetled a triumphant tune, before taking a spot at the consol and inserting his computer interface appendage into the ship’s port. [/SIZE]

[SIZE=medium]“Stay and help him for a minute, I’ll be back.” Ordo said turning and trying to trot away. More pain shot though Ordo and distorted whatever Ikalur might have said. This time though Ordo ignored the pain and kept his pace all the way to the Laser cannon access ladders, and scurried up into the dorsal turret gunners chair to try and get a view of what was happening. Ordo could see Rhan and Zala vastly out numbered with Zala looking like he was giving up. Uta looked to be hit by one of the alien weapons and Rhan looked like he was considering his response to the fight or flight instinct in all beings. Ordo hoped Rhan would consider taking some of Ordo’s weapons and armor before he ran off the ship next time. Ordo checked the turret computer and brought up the targeting system and energy levels. [/SIZE]

[SIZE=medium] 40% just like the read out said [/SIZE]

[SIZE=medium]Ordo warmed up the system and avoided moving the turret before it was most beneficial. 40% against fighters would be dangerous but against personnel it would be like shooting slugs with a blaster. [/SIZE]

[SIZE=medium]Ib'tuur jatne tuur ash'ad kyr'amur! [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]The Ikrat watch Zala carefully. Some continue watching him even after he lets the pack fly, others watch the pack. Only two seem to sense that the pack may be a danger of itself, flinching from the impromptu missile, but not seeming to know how to stop it. They lift their rifles but there's not much they can do as the pack hurtles toward the floor and then blows, taking out quite a few of them and part of the ship they're working on. A few of them are thrown forward or sideways by the blast, and lie broken where the land.[/SIZE]

[SIZE=medium]The three forwardmost open fire on their enemies, leaving Rhan and Athrun writhing in blue wreathed agony on the deckplates.[/SIZE]

[SIZE=medium]This at least gives Ordo and Dax the opportunity they were seeking and they easily dispatch the remainder, only to see another larger group pour into the bay. From a hole Zala's bomb blew in the hull of the freighter the Ikrat had been cutting into, a panicked herd of eopies squeeze out one by one and begin milling about the bay in confusion.[/SIZE]

[SIZE=medium]If anyone can spare a glance for outside, the defense force is all but obliterated.[/SIZE]

[SIZE=medium]As Crossfire and Ikalur struggle with access, the little droid meets layer after layer of defense, which wastes precious time as they work to punch through. Suddenly, mysteriously, the defenses seem to melt away and they're able to access the basic schematics of the ship.[/SIZE]

[SIZE=medium]"We're in," comes Ikalur's cool voice over Ordo's com, "but their database is weirdly segmented. We're going to have to head to the medbay or the library . . . I think. At least we know how to get where we're going. Also, head's up, this was way too easy."[/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]Inside Jai’galaar's dorsal quad laser turret. Docked aboard Ikrat vessel.
(NPC Actions and interaction approved by GM, except Crossfire whom I tell what to do.)

Zala's pack soared trough the air toward the Ikrat line. Ordo could taste the tension, the anticipation of what he was about to do. The smell of his own sweat and blood was strong and growing stronger as the adrenaline from the fight earlier still coursed in his system. The Ikrat mostly watched the pack, while a few flinched in expectation of the violent attack they assumed was coming while still three others drew their weapons and fired at Rhan and Zala.

In response, Ordo swung the turret around and brought the heavy lasers to bare on the strange alien enemies. As Ordo whipped the turret to face the Ikrat, Zala's backpack exploded, the sound was not as deafening at this range, but the unmistakable Womp of several thermal detonators filled the docking bay as the thermal energy wave raced out from the spot where the pack had just occupied. The blast was still spreading out as Ordo reflexively fire on the enemy lines. The red blast of energy from the turrets momentarily bathed Ordo's helmet in crimson light as he fire a brief salvo on the unsuspecting enemy warriors. Their bulbous fishlike eyes reflected the crimson bolts of energy just before their bodies were shredded by the overwhelming power of the heavy lasers. Fish and chips anyone? The once shimmering beings lay in pieces and heaps as the combined attack of the Jai’galaar's turret and what must have been some kind of carbine finished their vicious response to the Ikrat's threat.

Ordo watched, as his two Ori'vod lay wreathed in blue energy lay convulsing on the deck. The energy reminded Ordo of force lightning and how it seemed to cling to you for a short time after the user stopped the attack. It seems like I have felt that before, as if I have been in that same position.

Ordo was that in record time the Docking area began to fill with Eopies as they squeezed one by one from a fracture in the other YT-1300's hull. He then watched as the Ikrat reinforcements arrived. Ordo wasted no time, and immediately began firing on the unsuspecting Ikrat, but the blast from the turret were designed for ship to ship combat and tore through the lipless creatures as if they were nothing more than flimsiplast sheets. The quad laser turret cycled through the barrels only once as the Ikrat that were in the rear of the reinforcements wisely fled. They didn't see that coming. Little Aiwa bait. Ordo was still in the middle of chuckling to himself when the blast doors of the docking bay closed leaving some of the Ikrat that survived the quad lasers unscathed lock in. Once again, Ordo took aim, and squeezed the firing button on the turret controls. The Crimson blast however did not come. Ordo check the readouts and to his dismay the 40% capability was now down to 10% and the ship computer cut off the controls to avoid further damage to critical systems.

Just then, a familiar voice broke the silence.

"We're in," Ikalur's cool voice over said the ships intercom, "but their database is weirdly segmented. We're going to have to head to the medbay or the library . . . I think. At least we know how to get where we're going. Also, head's up, this was way too easy."

"Well they just sealed us in. I am coming down; meet me at the cargo lift. I think they are going send reinforcements maybe from returning fighters. We need to find an alternate route to a mainframe computer, quickly." Ordo responded emotionlessly, as he once again entered calculation mode.

"Copy." Ikalur responded as she coaxed crossfire away from his beloved Bessie.

Ordo went down, collected his gear, and prepared to exit the ship. When Ordo reached the cargo lift Ikalur and R3 were already waiting for him. Ordo's mind ran through various possibilities as he tried to devise a plan of attack. First things first, boy'o. Rhan and the others are outside. Ordo looked to Ikalur and R3 his eyes alert and focused behind the black T-shaped visor, as he spoke his deep voice once again had an impersonal mechanical sound, it always made Ordo think of a droid vocabulator, which is exactly what he used to build the Buy’ce in the first place.
"Did you get an overlay map you could send to my data pad?" Ordo asked hopefully it would be a great asset to getting around quickly, the only problem was that the enemy likely knew they had it, "We are probably going to have to find an air duct or maintenance access to get out of here." Ordo's voice was hesitant as he thought again of the possible returning starfighters. "We may need to fix the Jai’galaar while another group goes on, or we may be fighting the whole ship just to get dirtside again." [/SIZE]

[SIZE=medium]"We have the map, yes." She nodded, "We need to get to the medbay, or what serves them for one. I don’t think I'd be much good to you here though. I don't know anything about repairing starships." [/SIZE]

[SIZE=medium]“That’s fine, we’ll handle the details in a minute,” Ordo said moving to the cargo lift, as he unslung the A-295 he picked up along the way. A little beep from his data pad indicated Crossfire had sent the map on his own initiative, and Ordo did not have to worry about that later. “Right now Rhan and the other two are outside and exposed, and Uta is down for the moment. I’m going to see if I can help.” Ordo lay down on the lift and aimed the rifle toward where the blast door and the remaining Ikrat forces were moments before. [/SIZE]

[SIZE=medium]“Send me down, R3.” Ordo said [/SIZE]

[SIZE=medium]The whistled indignation Ordo got from his droid companion was a surprise, although by now he should have known better like the droid insisted. [/SIZE]

[SIZE=medium]“There is nothing wrong with my processors!” Ordo responded his deep voice booming slightly as the acoustics of the lift area made a slight echo. “Crossfire! There happy? You’re a one of a kind sentient, ok? Just hit the switch please.” [/SIZE]

[SIZE=medium]The droid didn’t respond this time and just hit the activation switch that lowered the lift. Ordo shook his head. Trying to show off for Ikalur I bet. Little bucket of bolts. As he lowered he snapped back to focus and sighted along the weapon, prepared to fire. [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]As the last Ikrat in the cargo bay dies, Ikalur and Crossfire step from the Jai’galaar, weaving between a couple of the eopies and toward a maintenance hatch on the far left hand side of the bay. None of the intruders have been injured further and this close to the corpses of the alien invaders, the team can see that they really are quite physically fragile. Ikalur ignores the chaos, ignores her team as they dust themselves off, replace weapons and shift gears. She ignores too, Shane and Spark emerging from remains of the 1300, the threat of Uta, still mad at the bay doors and the shift in the battle outside as the Ikrat ship is finally forced to take the defenders seriously. Focused and cool she presses a small pad near the door at about waist level which it slides open. The Chiss then climbs in, her right hand gripping the borrowed blaster and the little droid follows, barely clearing the frame. He lets out a forlorn warble and she mutters something that may be comforting.[/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]"At a guess, yes. That is we have the map and what we believe are the key areas," she admitted, still moving forward. "It's not easy to be certain."
She paused then, taking a path off to her right. "Crossfire, please send the map and our conjectured labels to Captain Zala's datapad." [/SIZE]

[SIZE=medium]Aboard enemy vessel[/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]The scene that greeted Ordo as he descended on the cargo lift was a strange but not altogether unwelcomed sight. His sick Vod was assaulting the Ikrat. His swift brutal attack was nearly awe inspiring, as he swept over the enemy remnant like a torrent wave crashing down a valley merely swallowing whatever stood in its path and leaving naught but destruction in its wake. It was clear Uta was still firmly in the grasp of the terrible Imasi plague, but at least for now he was pointed in the right direction. [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]Ordo watched as a huge piece of debris was caught by an invisible hand and was sent sailing at Rhan, the movement from Uta was a fluid wave as he continued his roiling assault on the Ikrat. [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]“Rhan!” Ordo shouted as he watched helplessly while the durasteel chunk sailed for his Vod. [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]Ordo was pleased to see his Rhan avoid the attack as the makeshift missile left the coiled spring of a commander unscathed. The crisis averted Ordo settled into a stoic determination to finish what they had come for. The bay was sealed and it was only a matter of time before the enemy either returned or Uta ran out of targets and turned his attention toward his onetime brothers. The choice was not ideal but it was very clear. They had to find a way deeper into the enemy ship and extract the data they needed. Ordo’s internal comlink beeped and whistled. Ordo stood hand to the side of his buy’ce for a moment before he realized Crossfire was communicating with him. The little astromech and the lovely Chiss woman were heading for an maintenance access and forward to the Medbay. [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]As Crossfire and Ikalur made their way to the Maintenance access Crossfire couldn’t help but wonder why Organics always found a way to find trouble everywhere they went. [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]“If they would just follow proper programming.”[/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]Ikalur however seemed to be a better modle than some and stuck to mission parameters which were to find data on the plague and go back to the planet. Nowhere did get stuck in the docking bay get mentioned in the briefing.[/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]"I'll follow you anywhere, but don't tell Bessie." Crossfire tweedled as Ikalur opened the access hatch and further impressed upon him that she was better programmed for the mission than his master.[/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]“By now Ordo would have likely blown something up.”[/SIZE]

[SIZE=medium]The R3 units extended his center leg and wheeled after Ikalur. He spun his dome around to comm Ordo and told him to move in their direction.[/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]"We shall try not to keep you away for long," she reassured him. "Just make sure we don't miss our turn."[/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]The maintenance conduit was well lit with a blue lighting system Crossfire approved of and clear of debris and grime that would be everywhere in most maintenance conduits. [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]“At least these organics have a proper respect for their machines, they should teach some of the rest of the breathers a thing or two before they are scrapped.”[/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]Despite her assertion Ikalur didn’t need crossfires input for the turns leading to the Maintenance lifts. The lifts were contained in a small bay like area and consisted of two odd recesses in the deck and ceiling of the bay, both of which extended ominously into oblivion. [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]Ikalur, stood and looked about the room with a slight frown, "I thought there were maintenance lifts here."[/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]Crossfire activated his scanners and could detect a field of some sort, that he’d not scanned before, not magnetic or force field technology, and not vacuum tubes, but unmistakably in motion, one up and the other down. [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium] “They must have read my mind.” [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]Ordo hefted his A-295 and started for the access hatch just as Ikalur and Crossfire were disappearing inside. The walls were white here as is the docking bay the pristine cleanness of these creatures was as alien as their gruesome visages. Every maintenance area he’d ever seen showed signs of actual maintenance, but here there was no coolant or welds or lubricant to be seen. Only pristine white walls and deck plates, as Ordo followed Crossfire and Ikalur. They soon stopped along the way and were greeted by two vertical tubes that crossfire confirmed were in perpetual motion though how they were moving was not clear. No air rushed by and no force field could be detected by his HUD. [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]"Which way to the med bay?" Ordo asked not wanting to waste time. [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]“Down and aft”, Ikalur responded even before crossfire tweedled out a response.[/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]Ordo understood and moved to the tube Crossfire had highlighted in his HUD and checked his gear before stepping into the empty space, as expected he was caught by some form of energy and carried down and disappeared just as Zalla rounded the corner to the bay[/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]The trip seemed to take a long time but finally after waiting uncertainly he immerged into a larger bay once again pristine white and lit with the strange blue lighting. Within were 3 Ikrat working at their individual stations, who blessedly hadn’t noticed the new arrival. Ordo ducked to the side behind an apparatus he had not ever seen before and slowly moved out toward the first Ikrat. With luck he could kill it without causing alarm and take one for a prisoner. If not he’d have to just start shooting. [/SIZE]
Ordo, his training coming in handy, does precisely what he intends. One kill, one hostage. Ikalur and Crossfire head toward the computer banks but before they can even reach them, the bay doors fly open and a ragtag crew dash in-- an armored male, a Wookiee and a colorfully dressed girl. The girl's arm is bleeding and burnt-- evidently some sort of blaster-like weapon injured her. A group of Ikrat rush in as well, in obvious pursuit, and as they step inside the door, one hesitates, firing a small weapon, and the girl goes down and stays down. Something she was holding flies from her hand, skidding along the floor to hit Ordo's boot. The Ikrat that killed her goes down a moment later, and Ordo makes out the form of Lir, his Defel hunting guide, with a lethal looking blade in one hand. A moment later two of the Ikrat locate and aim for him and another two tangle with Lir.

The Wookiee and armored being take refuge behind medbeds and the room disintegrates into a chaotic war. The Wookiee goes goes down, but not before he takes a dozen Ikrat with him. Ikalur and Crossfire can barely work with all the weapons fire and then the ship gives a might shake, power goes down, and alarms go off. Bulkheads hit the floor, smoke fills the air.[/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]Aboard Ikrat Ship in medbay below docking bay level.
(All NPC interactions approved by the GM.)

The small Bay that Ordo had found himself in was filled with equipment the like Ordo had never seen before. Stacks of computation devices or communication arrays filled the area while what appeared to possibly medical beds lined a wall. The two Ikrat in the room had not noticed his arrival and thus far were not near to discovering him. The flashing indicators on the equipment cast changing colors across the nearest Ikrat’s fishlike face as it went about its duties, whatever they may have been, and Ordo decided to take him as his hostage. [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]Ordo moved slowly toward his prey edging closer, closer, and slowly slung his rifle opting for his trusty DL-44. He was close now, close enough to take his prey with little effort. Ordo’s muscles tensed like a waiting viper coiling before the strike, and his prey was no more aware than a viper’s rodent prey. Ordo slowly reached forward his armored left hand drawing closer to the Ikrat’s head as his right pointed the blaster up at the ready to take the prey alive and kill the other in one motion. His hand drew nearer slowly, carefully, and then he thrust it forward, and in an instant of violent motion seized the Ikrat by the face. The Ikrat went stiff in Ordo’s grasp and Ordo knew the creature was in shock at the suddenness of its capture. Ordo’s armored hand grip the Ikrat’s face and pulled its head back sharply against his shoulder, and spun them both to fire on the remaining Ikrat. Ordo leveled the blaster in the same motion as the spin and fired as the remaining Ikrat turned to see the bright red bolt sail at its face. The shot flew true striking the creature solidly in the face where it’s nose should have been and left nothing but a singed hole and the smell of burnt meat in the air.

Behind him Ikalur and Crossfire made their way forward to begin the task of hacking the alien system and trying to extract the information they had risked so much to obtain. Ordo held the Ikrat tightly and firmly pointed his blaster at the creature’s side. Ordo didn’t know the physiology of these creatures but the placement of the emitter nozzle kept the enemy from making any perceivable noise. As Ikalur and Crossfire drew close to their target the heavy white blast doors flew open and in surged a ragtag band, consisting of a Wookie, an armored male, and a colorfully dressed girl. The girl was wounded by an energy weapon of some sort, her arm burnt and bleeding as she raced in with the other two. Behind them came the likely cause of the wound as a group of Ikrat warriors rounded a near bend and rushed in after the new arrivals. [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]“Just what I needed excitement.”[/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]Ordo had no time for introductions, or pleasantries and did the only thing he could to grant Ikalur and Crossfire the needed time. He shot his hostage and unslung his A-295. As He did the colorfully dress girl was hit by the pursuing Ikrat’s weapon blast and dropped hard sending a small object skidding across the deck and into Ordo’s armored boot. Ordo pulled up his weapon to fire and was halted as the Ikrat that killed the girl went down face first to the deck revealing the diminutive and deadly form of Lir, Ordo’s Defel hunting guide from before, holding a deadly looking blade. [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]“Where can I get one of those?”[/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]Ordo nodded to Lir and moved to grab the small handheld device that the girl had dropped. As he did Lir was reengaged by two Ikrat, while two more moved to fire on Ordo. The chaos that followed was typical of firefights but the weapons of the enemy were not. Ordo watched as the blue bolts of the creature weapons flashed around the bay and the Wookie that entered with the armored man erupted from behind a medbed and mauled at least a dozen Ikrat before their weapons found their work complete and the massive warrior was no more. [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]Ordo fired through the haze and tossed the device the girl had dropped to Ikalur. Crossfire beeped and tweedled excitedly saying something Ordo could not quite make out over the din of blaster fired, and sheiks from the fish faced aliens. Then the din was accented by a huge quake that seemed to rock the entire ship. The power dropped and smoke began filling the already carbon scorched air. Ordo fired at the Ikrat as they pushed their pursuit, one down, then another. [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]“Hurry up Crossfire, these fish are not playing Mesh’geroya here!”[/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]Ordo continued to lay down cover fire dropping to a high kneeling position to make himself a smaller target and gaining some bone support for accuracy. Seconds passed, or maybe hours he couldn’t tell the haze from smoldering corpses and whatever damage the huge quake had caused made it difficult to read the flow of the battle. Ordo was about to shout for Ikalur and Crossfire to hurry when Crossfire let out an excited whistle and Ikalur shouted, “I think We’ve got it!”[/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]“Then let’s get out of here.” The armored male said before Ordo could respond. [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]Two more down. “Oya, then go!” Ordo shouted his deep voice amplified by his Buy’ce’s voice modulator As he returned to a squatting position and covered the retreat. Ordo watched in his HUD as Crossfire made it up the lift, while Lir and the armored being began fighting their way to out. The male in the armor was good but after a few meters took a solid hit and the whole ship shuddered again. [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]“I’ve got a bad feeling about this.”[/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]Perhaps it was Ordo’s moment of doubt or just trying to cover to many allies at once, But Ordo took a hard hit. His abused armor had saved him from the brunt of a few shots already but this time it could take no more and Ordo was bathed in agony. His flesh exploded into pain on his left side and the thought that his skin was melting to him armor flashed through his mind as He screamed out loud. His training had given him the great ability to withstand pain and torture, but this was more than pain. Ordo felt as if his entire left side had been drenched with boiling acid then lit on fire with lightning. [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]He fell to the deck, the pain surging through him like liquid fire. In that moment the violent beasts buried deep in his intestines burst from its prison and the pain dulled slightly. Ordo roared from where he had fallen and pushed himself up. He was no longer interested in escape or missions only destruction mattered. His emotions directing him beyond thought and mind, he used body as a weapon as he threw himself into the fray. His thoughts moving through years of pain and disappointment, loss and sorrow. He thrust his armored right hand at the closest Ikrat and seized the creature by the lower jaw and pulled down and toward himself. A sickening wet pop sounded from the creature before its ear piercing shriek. [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]Ordo is hit again and again his body convulses as he throws himself at another Ikrat this time his skin on his chest and back felt as if they had been melted to his armor. Blaster bolts began to fly once more at the Ikrat as the armored being and Lir rejoined the battle defending Ordo while his rampage brought him to the portal of his march into the Manda. Soon Ordo felt the neck of the final Ikrat give a thick pop, as he wrenched it up and left shearing a vertebra, and ending the creature’s existence. As Ordo turned he saw Ikalur laying on the cold deck near the mouth of the tube and he knew his loss of control had cost his ally far more than he would have allowed if he had just retreated. Ordo dragged his feet to Ikalur and strained to lift her onto his shoulder, before entering the lift. All that mattered now was escape, and with the sounds of reinforcements on the way the prospect of survival was fading faster than a Corellian at an open bar. Ordo’s armor had multiple scorch marks and sections of armor were broken open and burned skin could be seen beneath. As Ordo reached the top of the lift and was joined by his comrades they set off toward the docking bay. [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]“Lir,” Ordo Croaked; his throat dry and weak, “the next time I see you please let it be around something that kisses better. I can’t take your friends much more often.”[/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]Time almost seems to freezes as Zala's dets sail over the heads of the Ikrat and hit the forcefield containing the reactor. As they go off with a whump, vaporizing everything and everyone within a five meter radius, the ship's systems react, anticipating the danger and venting the room. Zala, and a good portion of the room's detritus and equipment is sucked down into the tube he has just exited. Scant moments later, he is hurled into the black of space where he may be the only living thing to witness the Ikrat ship, an obviously damaged vessel, bearing another huge hole now, listing and seemingly breaking almost in half.

Lir just laughs a gravelly laugh at Ordo and shadows him though the tunnels back to the docking bay. She isn't the only one either. As the exit comes into sight Crossfire tweedles concern at Ordo. They're being followed. The group emerges just in time to see Rhan approach the Uta, who gets to his feet and whirls on the Human approaches him, he hand raised as if to strike. At nearly the same moment, the ship shudders again, more alarms go off and a quick look out of the bay shows Imasi nearly front and center . . . and trying to fill their vision with drab brown.[/SIZE]

[SIZE=medium]For Ordo’s effort at humor, he was graced with a gravelly laugh from Lir. The chuckle continued for a short time as the Defel Shadowed Ordo down the corridor. Ordo was a mess. His black and blue armor was puncture in several places and burned skin could be clearly seen, more for the texture than color, as some of the skin was as black as the armor. Inside the armor was no better. In several places his kote had melted and effectively welded Ordo to his armor. His face was bleeding from several cuts and his nose was broken…again. [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]In all Ordo still moved due to sheer determination. He was determined, determined to get Ikalur off the ship, determined to get the information to Imasi’s doctors, and determined to continue his search for his dear Briikase. His insides were crying out from the pain of internal injuries that he couldn’t imagine and his body screamed from wounds he could imagine too well, and yet he walked. He walked and he carried the form of the poor Chiss businesswoman who had been shot trying to save Imasi from a terrible threat, a threat that if not stopped here would continue to infect and attack system after system, costing perhaps billions of lives. The woman would have likely been fine had Ordo not turned to fight, and that was a fact he would never forget. His chest tightened at the thought of his foolish act bringing his friends harm. He stumbled slightly, barely keeping his footing and stopped long enough to hear the sound of footfalls in the corridor behind them. Crossfire blared a tweedle of concern for Ordo’s survival, a prospect Ordo himself was quickly letting drift away. He didn’t answer his droid companion, he couldn’t answer, his remaining strength was going into his quicken pace and the effort of breathing. [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]After the few minutes of trying to hurry, they finally reached the tunnel entrance and Ordo stumbled to the right of the open maintenance access and dropped to his knees. He laid Ikalur down just as Uta jumped up near Rhan. Ordo just sat by the access way and lay Ikalur’s limp head on his armor plated thigh and grabbed his Blaster rifle as tightly as he could manage and held it barrel up over his shoulder. While he waited, his body wracked with pain, pain that had grown worse from carrying the woman and his own weight down the corridor. He waited for the inevitable reinforcements, and reached down to the woman. Her perfectly coifed hair was now a tangled mess, matted to her face from sweat and blood. Ordo tried to gently brush the black hair of the woman’s blue face and rubbed her back as one would do to sooth a crying child, while his pain addled mind began to wander to times passed and regrets earned. [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]The woman didn’t move as he tried to comfort her. His ragged breath caught in is throat, as the cold hard truth began to come to the surface of his pain soaked mind. He checked her eyes. Lifeless. He watched for breathing. Nothing. Ikalur, someone who should likely have never come, was dead. Ordo leaned his head back slowly against the bulkhead. It wasn’t the first time he’d lost friends and would likely not be the last, but this was his fault from the moment he’d contacted her… to the moment she died. A tear streaked down Ordo’s scared and battered face, as he fought to keep his senses. [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]The ship shook again and seconds later the footfalls of the disgusting Ikrat began moving away back down the corridor. Ordo tried to look down the passage and fire at their backs but he could only get off one shot before his body revolted and jerked causing him to finally cry aloud in pain. Ordo leaned back against the bulk head and looked out the Docking bay. The blackness and starts he hoped to see was gone, replaced by the drab brown that could only be Imasi. Ordo looked down at his dead friend and thoughts of Bria came flooding through him. His heart ached, his mind shuddered, and his body screamed. Ordo laid his large armored hand on Ikalur’s lifeless shoulder and leaned his head back again this time closing his eyes, and said weakly over his helmets external speaker. [/SIZE]
[SIZE=medium]“I’ll see you soon.”[/SIZE]