Okay, there's too much to tell in this chapter that I can simply just seperate it into two parts, so there's going to probably be a part 3 and 4 for Chapter 5, here's part two, I've been working on it all day since 4:15 PM and I just finished it a few minutes ago.
Shift of Power
It wasn’t long before Strider and Jayde were properly fitted for urban combat in terms of armor. The two Jedi were escorted through the underground resistance base to a tram. They boarded the tram and waited as it sped through fairly nondescript underground tunnels. Finally, they arrived at a station several miles away from the resistance base. There were resistance soldiers all over the place. As Strider and Jayde exited the tram and began to walk up the stairs to the surface, they saw more and more soldiers around the station.
As Strider and Jayde reached the surface, they felt the blast of the hot winds on their skin. Blaster shots, explosions, and sounds of human, or alien, agony were heard off in the distance.
Strider turned and looked at Jayde, and spoke in a loud enough tone to be heard over the winds, “Kyron used to have calmer weather. This is blistering heat…did the Sith screw up the planet that badly?”
Jayde nodded and replied with remorse in her tone, “I’m afraid so, Strider. Hopefully the planet is not beyond restoration, however. We’ll have to see if the Senate is willing to invest on it if Kyron decides to return to the Republic. Keep your mind focused on the task at hand Strider. I don’t want your personal feelings about the outcome of the planet to interfere with what needs to be done, my apprentice.”
Strider nodded, “Don’t worry, master. I have focus on what needs to be done. Kyron’s result does not anger me. It’s who did it that does, and since he’s not here, I consider myself rather level headed right now.”
Jayde nodded, but before she could respond there was a large explosion heard rather near by. Strider made eye contact with her and they shared a nod.
Strider stepped forward and addressed one of the nearby soldiers, “Sergeant, I need you to dispatch me with as many men as you can spare so we can assist some of the men already out on the field.”
The sergeant turned and looked at Strider like he was crazy, “You must be insane. We’ve already lost well over thirty men to each security checkpoint. Being there’s six in the city, that’s one hundred and eighty men lost already. We don’t have much to spare.”
Strider looked at the sergeant for a moment, and then realized he didn’t recognize him as a Jedi due being fitted with armor. “They didn’t have two Jedi helping them take over those six checkpoints, now did they sergeant?”
The sergeant blinked, saluted, then replied, “I apologize, sir, I did not recognize you. I’ll dispatch you with twelve of our best stationed at this point, they should do more than well enough to assist you.” He turned around and shouted some commands to some soldiers idling in the tram station. Twelve soldiers ran out and formed up next to Strider and Jayde. The sergeant spoke to them, informing them who they would be taking orders from.
Jayde nodded at the sergeant in thanks, then spoke to the twelve men, “Split up into two sets of six. I’ll lead one set; my apprentice Strider shall lead the other.”
The men wasted no time, and formed up next to the two Jedi. Strider and Jayde gave each other a reassuring nod before they set off into the capital city of Kyron.
Strider was able to identify the type of weather, after a bit of thinking. “Most of the regions of Kyron have been nearly stripped to nothing but desolate wastelands, and many are as much of a desert as the one the capital city was built on…This is definitely a sandstorm, caused by sand from the city outskirts, and from whatever regions may have been stripped to nothing but dirt” Strider devised. Dirt was kicked up by the wind and was flying everywhere. It was a very gritty, limited visibility battlefield. A Sith artillery could have been standing twenty feet in front of Strider and he wouldn’t have seen it.
He had his lightsaber on and out as he traveled with his six men. Jayde and he had split up awhile ago at a street intersection. It wasn’t long before Strider caught up to the resistance members at one of the security checkpoints. It couldn’t be described in much other way than a brutal blaster holdout. Both sides were exchanging blaster fire through the blinding grit. Occasionally a howl of pain would be heard if someone on either side got hit with a blaster bolt to a weak point in their armor. Several stray shots came their way, as Strider and his men took cover with the rest of the resistance troops. Strider stood up and closed his eyes, so as not to be distracted by the sand. He entrusted himself to his abilities once more.
The Sith soldiers saw the Jedi stand up and step out from behind any of the barriers, lightsaber drawn. They were hesitant to fire at first, and then realized there were no resistance men covering him. They opened fire on the Jedi, figuring he couldn’t block a majority of them at once.
They were wrong.
Strider’s arms moved in a blur around him, leaving an afterimage of where they were last with each deflection. The Sith continued their barrage of fire, hoping this Jedi would get tired. Strider kept walking forward slowly, deflecting shot after shot. His arms were beginning to tire, until suddenly the Sith suddenly took cover again. Strider lowered his saber, his arms feeling rather heavy from the muscle strain. Suddenly, he sensed something coming, and rolled to the side behind a small barricade near some resistance soldiers. Just as he rolled, a Sith artillery blast had fired and the large blaster bolt emitted from it had passed where Strider was standing moments before. The blast hit the ground a few meters behind the resistance soldiers and exploded.
The soldiers’ morale was broken in a heartbeat. None of them were expecting to face any Sith artillery, and seeing something they weren’t prepared to deal with certainly wasn’t making them feel any better. Strider tried to bring them under order, and shouted at them, “I’ll draw fire. As soon as they open up, I want you men to move in and take down the soldiers, we’ll work our way to that artillery and take it out!”
There was no way the Sith soldiers had heard this conversation over the blasting winds and the now constant firing artillery. Another round hit the wall next to where Strider and four resistance soldiers were huddled. Debris and shrapnel were sent flying over their heads, followed by shouts of terror from the soldiers nearby. There was a brief moment of deafness from the blast as Strider had covered his face for a moment, and then opened his eyes to look at his fellow soldiers. Sound was slowly returning to his ears, and was starting to make out the sounds of the blaster bolt firing there at the checkpoint, and the sounds of battle far off were also returning to his ears. His hearing was back to normal before long, and he could see the blast hadn’t helped improve their morale any at all, and decided if he was going to make his move, it better be now while they had some sense of priority left in their mind for the mission.
The Sith were waiting. As soon as Strider was up and running, they opened fire. Strider swung his lightsaber in a brilliant display as he ran to the side, deflecting bolts out of harm’s way. Shortly after, the resistance soldiers peered over their barricades and opened fire at the Sith with what little courage they had left. Many of their blaster bolts hit home, the Sith soldiers letting out screams of pain as they fell.
By this time, Strider had almost sprinted to the other side of the street. As he began slowing down his pace, he heard something in the distance. It was the sound of the next artillery blaster bolt coming at him; it seemed as if it was in slow motion to him, almost able to make out the sound of the bolt tearing through the gritty, sand-polluted air. Strider quickened his previously slowing pace; it wasn’t long before he was along the side of a building. He leaped and ran along the wall as the artillery blast collided with the wall behind him. He lost whatever momentum he had on the wall and landed on the ground. Shortly after impact with the ground he collapsed, apparently the impact of the blast had shaken him up. Strider pulled himself groggily to his feet, knowing he couldn’t stay still for too long. After all this time he still hadn’t identified what kind of Sith artillery it was, whether it is a tank or a weapon emplacement. He heard the sound of another blast from the Sith artillery being emitted, tearing through the air, and instead of going at him, it flew right past him, well off target. Strider tried to figure out what on earth it was firing at, but then realized too late what had happened. “Blast!…That last shot wasn’t aimed at me…the resistance soldiers had gotten up and tried to move forward…it’s firing at them now…I’ve got to do something if I want more than decapitated limbs of former soldiers fighting alongside of me,” he thought grimly. Strider got up and started to proceed forward slowly. He kept near the side of the building, and hoped that he wouldn’t be detected providing he stayed out of an open area. It wasn’t long before he could make the shape of the Sith artillery. It was a design he wasn’t familiar with, and was seemingly firing off explosive blaster bolts of some kind. Of course, Strider didn’t consider himself an expert in the field of blaster technology, so there wasn’t any way he could logically explain how any of it worked. Another round fired off back at the security checkpoint, and he could only hope that the soldiers had taken cover from the attacks. Strider decided now was the time to make his move. He ran up the side of it, lightsaber held ready, and cut the entry hatch to the weapon open. Inside were three Sith soldiers and an officer. They all turned with an expression of surprise written all over their face. Strider wasted no time in removing them and rendering the panels inside the weapon useless.
This was apparently the last of the opposition, as the sounds of gunfire immediately near Strider and the checkpoint had ceased. The level of urgency seemed to have dissipated, and Strider felt a bit of calm come over his body. He had accomplished capturing the first security checkpoint. He realized they had to succeed in capturing all of them, but he rested easy knowing one of them was secured. He walked back towards the checkpoint, finding many of the soldiers he had seen when he arrived still alive and well, now securing the checkpoint. Strider heaved a sigh of relief, glad that the efforts weren’t in vain. Many of the soldiers were smiling and congratulating Strider for his accomplishment. Strider simply nodded, and thanked them for the support. He helped them set up a perimeter around the checkpoint and make sure it was secure. All the time he was wondering about his master. He had a connection with her, and could still tell she was doing well, but suddenly a thought crossed his mind.
“How could I doubt her? If she could beat me with a lightsaber, considering all the things I can do with one, she’s more than capable of handling a dozen or more soldiers with blaster rifles…In fact…I almost feel sorry for the Sith for what they’ve gotten themselves into.”
And so ends part two of God knows how many parts this chapter'll be split up into. I just wanted to get some stream of updates going so you all won't get bored. I'll start working on part three tomorrow, and it will most likely be in Jayde's perspective about what's going on on her end of the mission. I probably won't get that update done until Friday, unless Thursday proves to be a rather productive day as today was
Hope you all enjoy this part.