Postlude to Holocaust Part VI: Strangers
A long time ago, in a galaxy far, far, away...
Star Wars: Cantina Six: Postlude to Holocaust Chapter Six
It is a dark time for the galaxy. One year ago, as the remnants of the Empire and the struggling New Republic fought each other unawares, a mysterious alien force called the Aesir unleashed destruction across the galaxy. Four-fifths of the galaxy's intelligent life was destroyed as the stars giving light to its population centers went supernova, leaving only Coruscant and small planets with sparse populations untouched.
The galaxy at large know little about the Aesir's motivations. Some claim that the act was vengeance for the death of the Aesir's leader, Odin. The Aesir tell those who can listen that the death of their leader signalled the painful destruction of the galaxy. They say they struck first through mercy, offering as many as possible a quick death so few would have to suffer what was to come.
Shortly after the Holocaust, a few Aesir and an unlikely assortment of unusual beings from all over the galaxy - even from other dimensions - assembled to begin a long-prophesied quest to find a device called the Time Matrix. It is said that this device grants the power to undo time and set right what has happened.
According to prophecy, to find the Time Matrix, champions must seek:
Fire, Eye, and Ice"
Thus far, the group has found five of the ten keys, and unlocked four of the seven gates, helped by an ever-changing map that comes with each new key. They have encountered many dangers, passed many strange tests, faced alien supernatural powers, and even had one of their own betray them during their quest. They have used up one year of the alloted time frame of twenty-two years before the forces of evil destroy the galaxy altogether.
In the last chapter, the group was taken to Midgard, home of the Aesir. There, an enormous, day-long battle was fought, between billions of supernatural, evil monsters and undead Sith and a relatively tiny force of Aesir - and a few volunteers from the group. With odds of thirty-three thousand to one, the forces of evil easily won this corrupted version of Ragnarok, and the few surviving Aesir along with the group was forced to retreat while they had the chance. It is clear that finding the Time Matrix is the only hope for saving the galaxy.
The survivors have arrived on the planet Katrin for rest and supplies, waiting for the mysterious map to once again change and tell them their next destination...
* No godmoding.
* Try and keep most out-of-character discussion in the discussion thread.
* New people please post a character description.
Aidan: Gargoyle (male), Aetherian alien
Allessa: Human (female), Agamarian
Asgardreid: Aesirian Ship
Drago: Human Immortal (male), Mrearan expatriate, Agamarian
Elella: Human (female), Atredian Force Adept, Orthos' cousin
Guy: Human (male), former Shadow, Aetherian alien
Gerd: Jotun (female), presumed to be an Aesirian child
Gortick: Human (male), Atredian expatriate, Orthos' brother
Hal: Human (male), Agamarian Jedi Knight
Heimdall: Aesir (male), Einherjar, Vidar's brother
Idona: Aesir (female), Valkyrie Hunter
Idun: Aesir (female), Beserk Healer
Marin: Amnaer (female), Aetherian alien
Matt: Human (male), Agamarian Force Adept, being trained in the Jedi arts
Orthos: Human (male), Atredian Avatar
Ragnar: Aesir (male), Beserk
Raschel: K'Beran (female), NRI operative
Ritchet: Interdimensional Alien Being (male), appears as a talking, teleporting mouse
Svafa: Aesir (female), Valkyrie
Tanara: Human (female), Jedi Knight
Valda: Aesir (female), Valkyrie Healer
Vidar: Aesir (male)
Viddal: Aesir (male)
((This first section written by Admiral.))
*Two days have passed since the battle at Midgard. The world of Kartin was suffering greatly, its citizens were barely able to make a living. Food was in short supply and now very expensive, only the richest on the world could afford food every day.
The Asgardried, landed along side a long sandy beach. The ramp was extended, although the interior doors remained closed. The group could come and go as they please. There was a winding path that lead a small village two miles away.
During the two day journey to Kartin, Heimdall worked mainly in his forge coming out only to eat. He crafted a permanent arm for Tanara on the first day. The arm looked exactly like the one she lost, except it was blue made out of mithril. There were also silver runes carved into it at the point it would attached to the her original arm.
When it was finished, Idun immediatly took Tanara into surgery and attached the replacement. Otherwise, Idun and Valda spent most of the journey tending to the others who were wounded. By the time they reached Kartin most of the group had recovered from their wounds.
The Drakes had followed the Asgardried, clinging to the hull while the ship was in slipstream. At the moment the drakes were relaxing along the beach, but keeping an eye out for any potential enemies that may come after the group.*
*Aidan slept in stone form aboard the Asgardried, alone in his room under a portable sun lamp. Marin sat outside, watching the Drakes on the beach. Raschel had gone to head to the village to see if her remaining credits would buy anything.*
Kartin System, Beran Minor
*Guy exits warp space above an icy, empty world.
His ship has greatly expanded in size, with several new sections added on to its modular frame, not to mention a piece still attached to the side that was what remained of the mercenary ship.
Receiving info from his ship's sensors, Guy mentally surveys the situation and comms the Asgardried*
Guy: I have arrived at the coordinates your ship gave me. Either there is some mistake, or is there something you would like to explain?
*The Asgardried answered Guy's query, though a set of relays. Tracing the message would lead to a barren plain on Beran Minor.*
Asgardried: We are just taking precautions to ensure the saftey of the group. What has happened to your vessel?
*Vidar finally awoke from his two day coma. Valda had stayed with him every moment she could. When Vidar came out of his coma, she was at his side, smiling warmly at him.
Vidar tried to sit up, but he was still to weak from his encounter with Fenrir and couldn't manage.*
Valda: Lay, down. It will be another day until you can stand and move around normally.
*Viddall, and Ragnar were currently manning the bridge, listening to the Asgardried as it talked to Guy. Svafa, Idona, and Idun were walking along the beach, Gerd was in front of them walking in the surf.
Heimdall, decided to take a break from working in his forge. He walked to an outcropping of rocks and sat down, gazing at the water and trying to relax to the soothing sounds of waves.*
Tanara sat alone on a large rock on the beach. She had no idea where to reach Elaina, but she knew it must be done. With a small sigh, she reached up and brushed her hair out of her face, wincing as the new hand touched her face. She had still not grown accustomed to the coolness of its touch.
Your sister is not far from here.
Tanara bolted upright from her slightly relaxed position and slid off the rock, landing on her feet.
"Where?" she demanded.
Patience. She will come to you.
Tanara nodded uncertainly and returned to the Asgardried.
"You've tired me out again," Elaina complained. "Why must you do this to me?"
"You must be prepared for a fight," Kira's cold voice retorted. "It is the only way..." her voice trailed off. Then, she spoke again, no more than a whisper. "Your sister is here."
"Finally!" Elaina exclaimed. "Let us go to her."
"As we shall," Kira agreed, putting Elaina's legs into motion, running toward the beach. When she got there, she slowed to a walk. "Finally! This is the ship your sister boarded."
She walked forward, remembering that the ship had spoken to Tanara.
"You are not called the Sky Swinger," she retorted. "That's what the records called you, but they also said you were heading here. You didn't... at least not right away."
"I'm looking for my sister," Elaina cut in, surprising Kira in her sudden control over her own voice.
Let me handle this! she screamed from inside Elaina's head, but Elaina refused, pushing Kira temporarily to the back of her mind.
"Her name's Tanara," she continued. "I want to see her."
*Orthos sits at the small desk in his room, looking out the viewport*
Orthos: How sad. Every world we go to seems to get worse....
*Viddal watches Elaina on a video screen, on the next monitor is a scan of her showing weapons and armor she has. He flips a switch allowing him to talk to Elaina*
Viddal: Place your lightsaber, and sword on the shelf.
*A small door opens and a shelf extends itself. The shelf is large enough to fit the sword and lightsaber*
Then we will talk about you seeing Tanara.
*He flips another switch sealing the doors into the ship. The Drakes on the beach watch Elaina cloesly*
Guy: I have reintegrated its other sections. Their storage base was in danger of being compromised and I did not want to risk them being destroyed. Is there anything else you wish to know?
Asgardreid: Is there any reason why we shouldn't tell you our location?
Asgardried: Fine, make your way to Kartin, same system as your in. Suggest you make planetfall at night unless you can mask your ship. By... oh did you bring me anything?
Guy: I can mask my ship, although I could give you a better answer if you told me what I need to mask it from. I didn't bring you specifically anything, but I have brought the three captives of the mercernaries, who remain in their cages. I don't intend to let them out until they speak with the rest of you. Incidentally, one has already awakened, a young human by the name of Chere. She claims to have known Aidan and Marin.
Asgardried: Mask your ship from the locals so they don't bother us.
*Matt was currently training with a training sword on a practice dummy*
Guy: Very well.
*Guy sets the new destination coordinates, activates several of the ship's cloaking devices - designed to block the sensory detection of both creatures and most machines - and jumps back into warp-space*
Asgardried, Aidan's Room
*The sun-lamp deactivates after a preset amount of time. After a short period of time, Aidan wakes up, cracking and bursting his stone shell.
His sleep cycle was hopelessly out of sync with the day/night cycle of this world, which was a commonplace occurence by now. Space travel, plus traveling with day-walkers tended to do that.
Aidan's wounds were healed, yet after two days, he still felt hazy from the fight. Also present was an unpleasant, unwelcome sense of guilt*
*Drago leans against a wall watching Matt work.*
Drago: Good, you are progressing. You seem to have mastered the basics.
Once again without Kira's permission, Elaina took off her weapons belt and placed it on the shelf. Once this was done, she heard Kira's voice screaming at her in her head.
You should have let me handle it! You never know when you'll need those weapons!
"Now can I see my sister?" Elaina asked, ignoring Kira.
*Viddall flips a switch retracting the shelf with Elaina's weapons on it once the shelf was back inside the door closes sealing the weapons inside the ship.*
Viddall: You will get them back when you leave.
*He then turn switches the comm from external to internal.*
Viddall: Tanara, someone claiming to be your sister has arrived at the ship. Look at the monitor closes to you to see an image of her. She is currently unarmed.
*Viddall maniuplates controls, so that Tanara could leave the ship if she wanted but Elaina could not enter it*
Tanara didn't even bother looking at the monitor. "It is my sister."
She stood and headed out. When she reached Elaina, the two women embraced.
"Somebody told me you'd be here," Elaina whispered. Tanara nodded, her face emotionless. Then, Elaina caught a glimpse of Tanara's arm and her face paled.
"What happened to you?" she demanded. Tanara smiled briefly.
"I lost an arm, so what?" she answered. It was at this point that Kira managed to regain control over Elaina. Her face paled even more and her eyes faded. Tanara noticed the difference and sighed.
"We have a lot to talk about," she said. "Did you come unarmed?"
"The ship ate my weapons," Kira answered, doing her best to sound like Elaina. She smiled slightly. Tanara nodded, not fooled for an instant. She turned back to the ship.
"Release my sister's weapons," she said. "We're going for a walk and I don't want her to be unarmed."
*Viddall switches the comm back external.*
"What?" Tanara exclaimed. Kira's eyes widened. "Why not?"
Viddall: For one you are a Jedi and should be able to protect your sister on this planet without even having to draw your lightsaber. Secondly we do not trust her. However, if you are really fearful for her saftey we can have a drake accompany you and then there is absolutely nothing to fear.
Otherwise unless I hear from Lord Heimdall, my decision will stand.
*Hal and Allessa are walking along the beach, both wear nondescript Rim-World clothing.*
Hal: Are you sure about this.
Allessa: Yes, I am.
Hal: Good, because convincing them isn't going to be easy.
Tanara's face relaxed and she nodded. "Of course. It makes sense. No matter. Come, Elaina."
They left the ship without Kira's weapons and continued in silence for a time. When they were hidden from view, Tanara turned to Kira.
"You wanted to see me," she said softly. "Here I am. What is it?"
"I'm not letting you out of my sight again," Kira answered, hoping to sound like Elaina. Tanara was not fooled.
"I know what you meant by that," she said. Suddenly, Kira lunged forward, taking Tanara down to the ground. When the two women separated, Tanara's lightsaber was in Kira's hands. With a smirk, she activated its blade.
"Perhaps you're not as intelligent or strong as I thought," she retorted. Without a word, Tanara rolled up her right sleeve, showing her new forearm.
"Do you know what this is made of?" she asked. Kira shrugged. "From what I'm told, it's a mixture of Mithril and cortosis. So you see, I let you take my lightsaber, for without it, you would have a serious disadvantage. Besides that, I have a defense against it."
With a low growl, Kira lashed out with the lightsaber. Tanara lifted her arm and blocked the swing. Her sleeve fell over the arm again, but she paid no attention to it. In a few more seconds, the sleeve was ripped to shreds. Tanara lunged forward and gripped the blade of her lightsaber, pulling backward as she lifted a leg up to kick Kira's hand. At this, the lightsaber went flying over Tanara's head and she released it.
"Hand to hand," Kira growled. Tanara nodded and came forward. The two began wrestling. At first, neither one appeared to have the advantage over the other, but over time, Tanara began to gain the upper hand. Finally, she wrestled Kira to the ground, holding her there.
"You did what you promised," she said. "Now I will make a promise. I'll not let you keep your hold on my sister. Do you hear me, Kira? I'm fulfilling this promise. Now!"
Holding Kira's throat with her right hand, she placed her real hand on Elaina's forhead. A strangled cry came from Elaina's mouth as she continued to struggle under Kira's influence. Then, suddenly she went limp. Tanara gasped and fell backward as Kira passed from Elaina to Tanara.
"I've got you!" Tanara whispered. Elaina remained motionless on the ground. Tanara groaned and dropped flat on her back. She could regain control of Kira as she once had, but it was different this time. Kira didn't want to be in Tanara and was trying again to get out.
"Don't think I'll let you," Tanara snapped, using the Force and her own willpower to trap Kira in a dark corner of Tanara's mind forever.
Finally, Tanara sat up.
Release me! Kira screamed. Tanara managed a weak smile.
"I don't think so," she said. "Do you see my sister there? Look through my eyes. That is what you did to her. Don't think I'll let you do it again."
Slowly, she got to her feet and went over to Elaina. She felt her strength returning and gently picked her sister up. Using the Force to retrieve her lightsaber, Tanara turned back toward the Asgardried.
When she came into view again, she was still carrying Elaina who was still unconscious. She approached the ship and stopped.
"Elaina needs medical attention," she said. Then, she collapsed, apparently in need of some medical attention herself.
*Viddall manipulated a couple of controls then turned to Ragnar*
Viddall: I'm going to help Valda, with those two *motioning to a monitor showing Tanara and Elaina.* I'll be back in a little bit.
Ragnar: This could be funny, I'll record it. Have fun.
*Viddall, stands and meets Valda at the entrance. The two walk down the ramp and then headed towards the collasped sisters. When they reached them Viddall immediatly bent over Tanara and removed her lightsaber, placing it with Elaina's weapons. Valda meanwhile disentangled the sisters and looked at them.*
Valda: I want both of them bound before I treat them, but don't want to bring them inside the ship...
*All the commotion and action aroused the attention of one of the Drakes. Getting out of the surf the drake began walking over to the Asgardried.
Viddall saw this and smiled*
Viddall: I think we may have a solution *gesturing towards the drake.*
*A minute later the Drake arrived and Viddall spoke to him briefly about his idea. The drake nodded his consent at Viddalls suggestion. A couple of moments later the drake had position himself between the sister, and placed a claw on each sister's chest. The drake used enough pressure to pin the women to the ground but not enough to harm them.*
*Idun's comlink buzzed on the beach, signalling her that she was needed back at the ship. Idun walked quickly back to the ship arriving just as the drake was pinning the sisters to the ground.*
Idun: I take it this is why I was called back?
Viddall: Yes mi'lady
*Viddall quickly filled Idun in on what had occured.*
Idun: Go on Valda lets get this over with.
*Valda knelt between the two sisters placing a hand on their foreheads. She utters a spell, ten seconds later she stands and steps back. Idun nods to Valda, while wondering which sister would wake up first*
Elaina was the first to come back to consciousness. At first, she seemed to have forgotten everything that had happened and muttered sleepily about something. Her words were too slurred to be understood. Then, her eyes opened and she attempted to get up. A look of panic crossed her face when she realized that she was pinned. She looked around and her eyes fell on Tanara. Suddenly, it all came back.
"Is she alright?" she asked, her voice small.
Idun: Time will tell if she is alright. Now who are we talking to Elaina or Kira?
"I'm Elaina," came the quick reply. Then, a look of horror crossed her face. "Tanara took her from me! Oh, is she going to be alright? Will Kira control her as she did me?"
*Idun looks at Elaina, her eyes seeming to read Elaina's soul. She saw truth in what Elaina had said, Kira was indeed not present in her.
Idun nodded to the drake. The Drake lifted it's claw freeing Elaina*
Idun: We shall see.
Elaina felt terrible! How could Tanara have done this for her? She rolled over and got up, moving away to the rock Tanara had been sitting on hours before. Climbing up on it, she let her emotions go and cried.
Half an hour after Elaina went to the rock, Tanara regained consciousness. Unlike Elaina, Tanara was instantly aware of what had gone on before.
"How is Elaina?" she demanded, struggling temporarily against the Drake's claw. Almost immediately, she stopped struggling, knowing it was useless. "Where is she?"
*Idun's piercing gaze fell upon Tanara*
Idun: She is safe, now tell me what did you do with Kira?
*Guy's ship emerges from warp space above Kartin, invisible to humanoid eyes, and cloaked from the types of detection equipment the ship's databanks guessed Kartin's inhabitants might have.
Locating the Asgardried, Guy's ship enters the atmosphere and speeds towards it. Guy comms the Asgardried*
Guy: I should be arriving at your location in a few minutes. Is there anything I ought to know? Also, can you tell me if Aidan or Marin are awake? I'd like to confirm the captive's story if possible.
Tanara hesitated before answering Idun's question.
"I... I took her back," she stammered. With a little laugh, she continued. "She's locked away where she can't get out. I can still hear her... she's screaming at me, trying to get me to let her go... I can't... not after what she did to Elaina..."
Her voice faded away into nothingness. "I won't."
Asgardried: You realize if they were sleeping we could easily wake them up, but yes they are awake.
*Idun stares at Tanara for a little while, then she crouches down by her head and spoke in a low voice*
Idun: It was wise of you to tell the truth, I can see that Kira has been locked away in the recesses of your mind. Your life now depends upon you keeping her there under your control. Always remember that I will be able to tell if Kira gains control of you.
*Idun stood and nodded at the drake, the drake raised his claw freeing the Jedi*
Idun: Your sister is over there, she is rather upset over what has happened. You need to reassure her what you did was the right thing. Also both of you may retrieve your weapons whenever you wish.
*Idun walked back towards Viddall, and Valda. They exchange a few words. Viddall and Valda head back inside the ship, while Idun and the Drake headed towards the beach.*
Guy: You never know. We seem to have a problem with comas around here.
*Marin turns from watching the drakes to watch Heimdall watching the ocean. After a moment she gets up and walks over to him*
Marin: Heimdall, do you have a minute?
*Heimdall looks at Marin from his seat on the rock.*
Heimdall: Sure, what is on your mind?
*Marin sits down next to Heimdall*
Marin: Idun said something the night after the fight...something about an oath about Aidan and I. She said I ought to ask you about it.
Heimdall: Yes, Idun and I spoke about that. It was an oath to protect you and Aidan. What do you want to know about that?
Marin: Don't take this the wrong way...but why did you take this oath?
Heimdall: We believe that you are worth protecting, and there has not been a single instance where we have regreted taking that oath. Now, I bet your going to ask why, so I'll just explain now.
Our lives are centered around fighting evil, and protecting those who are good. Over the millennias we have learned how to tell who are worth protecting and who are not. You are worth protecting.
Marin: Thank you for the compliment, but...what about the others? Why do Aidan and I have an oath for ourselves?
Heimdall: Well to begin with you are a child, even though you are one of the most mature members of this group. I don't know Aidan's age but he at least acts like a child.
You entered a galaxy in turmoil and needed someone who was going to look out for you, especially with the Shadows actively pursuing you. It may have been better for you to know of this earlier but we have spent our lives protecting people in secrete and its a hard habit to break.
Why haven't we taken oaths to protect the others? Well, one of our oaths covered them in general but that oath would also cover you and Adian. However, we knew that they could protect themselves. We did not know your abilities when we took the oath concerning you.
And no, we do not have any alterior motives in taking the oath. We have also taken a similar oath for another member of this group.
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