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Old 05-01-2006, 12:46 PM   #147
Jae Onasi
@Jae Onasi
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Chapter 17

This is an updated version of Ch. 17. Thanks for the beta, Jiara.


Chapter 17: The Capture

I turned back to look at Talin, whose lips were set in disappointment. 笛olee and I are going to head out in a couple minutes. Do you need anything?


添ou値l be in good hands here. Tarm誕d has excellent medical skills, I tried to reassure him.

的 know. I致e watched them at work, he said quietly, looking away.

的 know you want to go, and it値l be good to have you back when you池e healed. We made a pretty decent team against all those Sith fighters.

Talin blinked and focused, then looked at me. 的 don稚 think you池e going to end up in any kind of duel with Dycen誕 being out in space, but, please, you have to listen to me on this in case you do.

的知 listening. I致e learned to have a healthy respect for your lightsaber skills.

泥ycen誕 is very predictable in his fighting style. He痴 still new to lightsaber dueling. Even though he uses the dark side to enhance his power, it doesn稚 make up for his inexperience. He almost always does flurries, and he uses a lot of the same moves. It didn稚 take me long to figure out the forms he uses because they池e so simple. His agile hands traced the patterns in the air, highlighting the best attacks and countermoves.

I watched intently, determined to memorize every scrap of information. 的値l make sure to tell Jolee.

溺ind your stances, too. Stay with the basics妖ramatic spins are for holovids. Remember to watch his eyes.

His urgency surprised me. I laid a hand on his arm to calm him. 典alin, you値l be fine. We shouldn稚 be gone long, and I promise we won稚 leave you here.

的t痴 not me I知 worried about. I want you to come back safe. He held my gaze as he laid his hand on top of mine. The warmth spread from him and flowed through me. No, not again, not those feelings. 禅here is no emotion Jedi training is supposed to stop this憂olee can稚 be right! I can稚 risk that heart-splitting pain again when I lose someonehim.

Jolee痴 knock on the door caught our attention. Talin held on to my hand a moment longer, reassuring me with that warmth.

迭eady? Jolee asked evenly.

典alin was telling me about Dycen誕痴 fighting style.

添es, I can see that, he replied, desert-dry.

I couldn稚 stop the flush from spreading across my cheeks, and I turned quickly to Talin. I shook my finger in a feeble attempt to appear stern and in control. 添ou behave while we池e gone. I知 going to ask Tarm誕d about everything when we get back.

敵o. Catch him and come back safe. May the Force be with you both.

* * *

The Accipiter streaked away from the planet as we raced to catch Dycen誕.

Jolee settled into the pilot痴 chair after scanning the instruments. 滴ere痴 the plan, Jae. We want him alive and his ship痴 too small to board. We値l have to disable it and force him to land.

滴e doesn稚 strike me as the surrendering type.

哲o, he痴 not. We値l probably have to fight him if he comes down uninjured.

典alin gave me some pointers about his dueling style just before we left.

泥on稚 know about you, but I don稚 recall any styles that involved holding hands with your enemy.

笛olee! I sputtered, heat flushing my face as he grinned. 的t痴 probably caregiver syndrome. Patients sometimes get infatuated with people who save them. I知 sure it値l go away when he痴 better.

展hat痴 your excuse then?

天ery funny. He was depressed about not being able to go with us. I just thought he needed a friend then. Jolee looked at me dubiously, cocking an eyebrow. I crossed my arms over my chest. 展hy would I encourage that? The man drives me absolutely crazy with his overbearing attitude.

鉄ure. Remind me to play pazaak with you more often. I値l make a million credits watching your face give away all your secrets.

的知 trying to be serious!

鏑ook, I don稚 know what happened when you had to go bring him back from death痴 door, but you gave him a reason to come back. I felt the shift in both of you. Something might happen, something might not, but as long as you both are happy, I知 fine with however it works out. What I do know is that denial is bad, especially for a Jedi. You may as well put a blinking sign above your head that says 遷edi lying to herself here.樗

I sat back and closed my eyes. The images of the last few days raced across my vision as I considered what he said. 的 don稚 know what to think. I知 still trying to sort everything out. So much has happened just in the last two days. I can稚 even begin to understand how he can drive me up a wall with his arrogance and yet attract me all at the same time. I never expected to have any feelings like that after Roben. With the Order痴 rules on attachments, I hoped that I wouldn稚 ever have to deal with it again.

哲ow that痴 an honest answer. All I can tell you is that the Order isn稚 an escape hatch from life. If you try to run away instead of really living it, you池e going to miss out on so much. Besides, the attraction thing doesn稚 have to make sense. Sometimes it just happens. I fell in love with the woman who shot down my ship. Does that make any sense? Of course, she was gorgeous and had fire in her spiritbut I digress. Things sort themselves out with time. He tapped another button on the control panel and adjusted our course. 哲ow, tell me what he said about those fighting styles. My mouth is getting dry from all this lecturing.

Jolee sat back in his chair as I explained, occasionally nodding or asking me a question to clarify a point. 典hat boy痴 good. He caught a couple things I missed. Let痴 hope we don稚 have to put it to use.

The proximity alarm beeped as Dycen誕痴 ship appeared on our screen. We received silence to our hails to turn around and land. Jolee maneuvered our ship behind him, flying in fast.

泥on稚 hit anything critical like the cockpit. We want him to land in mostly one piece, Jolee ordered.

敵ot it. He痴 firing!

Jolee rolled our ship, dodging the blaster fire. I locked in on the engines and shot several rounds. The first round hit the shields. They glowed brightly for a few moments, and then died out. The next rounds hit the ship.

徹ne of his engines is flaming out, I said.

展ell, now he doesn稚 have a choice about landing. Track him.

Dycen誕痴 ship turned back towards the planet. Li誕dan fighters scrambled as we both entered the atmosphere.

鏑i誕dan control, call your people off. We need Dycen誕 alive, I called.

展e池e ordered to fire, Control replied.

鉄on, that boy痴 ship is already flaming out. Just follow him down with us. Unless you feel like explaining yourself to Kiol誕d, who wants him alive if possible. Jolee keyed off the comm and grinned at me. 鄭lways feel free to take high officials names in vain when dealing with the military.

After a long pause, the comm crackled loudly with a terse reply. 適iol誕d has ordered us to leave him to you. However, we will shoot him down if he deviates towards the city.

填nderstood. Out, Jolee replied. He keyed off the comm. 鏑ike he has control over his fighter right now.

The fighters moved into an escort formation, and we maintained our pursuit. Dycen誕痴 ship glowed as it hurtled through the atmosphere, then leveled out. The top exploded off. Jolee pulled up sharply to avoid the debris.

滴is ship痴 breaking apart!

哲o, he痴 ejecting, that damn fool. There痴 hardly anything to breathe this high up. Stay on his signature. I値l circle around.

Dycen誕 was a miniscule blip on the sensor as Jolee turned to follow him. What was left of Dycen誕痴 ship broke apart into large chunks that fell in a rain of fire. Dycen誕痴 speck on the monitor disappeared. I scrolled through the different sensors, trying to pick up his signal again. 的 lost him, Jolee.

的t痴 the heat and debris. Confuses some of the instruments. They can稚 tell us everything, anyway. You have to trust your senses, too.

Jolee landed near the spot we felt Dycen誕 was most likely to land. Once on the ground, he surveyed the terrain. 滴mm, forest and fields. If I were a smart Sith, I壇 probably hide in the woods somewhere. All the animal activity makes it easier to cloak his signature.

展ho said he was smart?

展ell, you池e learning to be sassy now, aren稚 you? Never underestimate Sith. Just when you think you致e got them figured out, they do something new and sneaky. Now, look around and see if we can find anything of his.

We worked our way across the field, searching for bits of evidence to tell us where he landed.

典here痴 a parachute over there.

哲ow we can find his trail. Jolee slowly paced the area and stopped to finger a tall stem of grass.

展hat is it?

鄭 broken stalk and the start of some faint tracks.

的 don稚 see much of anything.

鏑ook for the alterations in life force in the area. The damaged brush gives a subtly different Force signature. Helps if you致e learned Wookiee tracking skills like I did. Saved my hind end in the Shadowlands more times than I care to count. Keep alert in the woods遥ou値l probably feel the dark side presence before you see him, but not much before. Watch everything.

We followed those faint tracks far into the forest. We approached a glade, the dark side energy chilling the air. Jolee stopped and cocked his head to listen. I sensed the fear in the animals that skittered away. My heart started to pound in anticipation, and I took a deep breath to suppress the adrenaline. I felt for his presence. He痴 there, he痴 moving. Jolee痴 lightsaber snapped on a moment before mine.

A breeze brushed across my face. Dycen誕 swooped down, lightsaber lit. 笛olee! I called, ducking a powerful slash.

Dycen誕痴 orange saber blazed as it wheeled over my head. Then he drove his blade in hard. I caught his attack and slid my lightsaber down its length. I grazed his chest before he dodged to the side. He grunted with the pain, and his face darkened in fury. His blade blurred with his flurries and I fought to keep up with the rain of blows. When he slashed at my legs, I dropped my blade tip down. His whirling blade stopped but it shot right back at me. The heat burned through my tunic sleeve and singed my arm before I snapped my saber up to stop his attack. Dycen誕痴 eyes lost focus for a moment. As I slashed, a wall of Force energy hit and I flew back. The impact with the tree knocked my breath out. Dycen誕 jumped towards me. He raised his lightsaber high and chopped down.

Jolee痴 saber caught his attack mid-swing. Their blades locked together, and I twisted out of the way. Dycen誕 broke loose and attacked Jolee. Their blades crackled loudly with each blow. Jolee sped up his attacks as I joined him, pressing Dycen誕 back. Our blades spun and then scissored on Dycen誕痴 lightsaber. It flew out of his grasp. He stopped, holding up his hands. I turned off my lightsaber, breathing heavy.

的t痴 over, Dycen誕. We don稚 want to hurt you, Jolee said.

鼎ome with us quietly, I added, slipping into his mind to persuade him.

He repelled the attempt and glared at me. 的知 not going to live life Joined. You値l kill me, or you値l die trying.

展hy do all the Sith say things like that? Jolee sighed.

Dycen誕痴 eyes narrowed and he smiled thinly. His Force energy flowed. I heard a loud crack and looked up. 笛olee, jump! I leaped to the side as a large branch crashed down. The smaller branches raked across my back and arm.

Dycen誕 leaped away. His lightsaber flew to his hand and he dashed off into the forest.

笛olee? I pushed aside leaves, searching frantically. I found him lying under part of the branch, eyes closed. 徹h, Force!

One eye popped open, then the other. 的知 fine. Just a little stuck. Help me with this branch.

I breathed out in relief. I helped untangle him and then pulled him up. 滴e ran off that way, I pointed.

鏑et痴 go.

We sprinted after Dycen誕 and gained on him as he crashed through the forest. Then Dycen誕 stopped short, arms circling wildly to stop his momentum. He had come up on a deep ravine. He turned to face us, igniting his lightsaber. Jolee and I stood side-by-side, our sabers snapping on again. Dycen誕 stepped into an attack stance and started swinging wildly. His blade crashed against ours. My arms shook from the effort to drive back his blows. Jolee circled his blade in towards me, then snapped it back away. Dycen誕 slashed sideways to block. Jolee abruptly whirled his blade back under in a feint. Dycen誕痴 blade kept flying away, leaving his side exposed. Jolee and I struck him down, and he collapsed at our feet.

Jolee picked up his lightsaber as I kneeled down. 鏑ife signs are still there, but really weak. There痴 a lot of damage, too much for me to heal.

Jolee put a stasis field around him. 的t痴 too much for both of us. He痴 going to need Master healers. Let痴 move. We値l put him in the med pod and send him to Coruscant as soon as we can hit space. The Council will want to talk to him anyway if he survives.

We double-timed back to the ship with the Li誕dan. As we left the woods, I looked up. The sun was gone. Dark clouds filled the sky, lightning flashing.

鉄ky looks bad, I said.

鏑et痴 move it. I致e already been through one storm. I don稚 want to be in another. We crossed the field and reached our ship quickly. Jolee started up the ship while I secured Dycen誕 in the med pod and activated its stasis field.

鄭ll set? he asked when I rejoined him.

典he life signs are staying stable.

敵ood. Let痴 get out of here before that storm hits us and does something nasty.

I thought about what the storm would do to the wreckage. 笛olee, turn around. We have to go back.

的t痴 generally not a good idea to fly towards the danger, you know.

的f that storm hits the ship debris, any evidence will be destroyed. We have to try to get the navcomputer and find out where he痴 been.

的 hate it when you young people are right. Look, you致e got 5 minutes to find whatever you can, less if I have to call you back.

Some of the remains were still smoking. I searched through the wreckage and found what was left of the cockpit. The winds started to howl, and the black clouds were lit up with non-stop lightning flashes. The sprinkles of rain turned to drenching sheets.

笛ae, we have to leave now. Sensor shows a tornado coming.

的 found the navcomputer!

鏑eave it! We won稚 be able to fly out of this if we don稚 leave now!

的 just about have it! The instrument was stuck. I pulled out my lightsaber and severed it from the wreckage.

敵et on the damn ship, Jae! Jolee ordered.

The booming thunder made it almost impossible to hear him. I crouched low against the wind and flying debris. A meter-wide piece of metal whirled through the air. I threw up a force field. It bounced off, just missing my head. Then the wind intensity dropped, and I realized the ship was blocking the gale. I ran up the ramp into the relative safety.

鄭bout time you decided to listen to me and get back here, Jolee groused, lifting the ship off the ground. 添ou look like a drowned tach.

典ry Wookiee. Drowned tach doesn稚 do it justice, I said, trying to wipe away the rivulets of water pouring down my face.

撤unch in the coordinates for an orbit. We池e going to fly straight up to get out of this storm, Jolee said, hanging on to the instruments with both hands.

The fierce winds rotated in small funnels around us. The ship bucked as Jolee tried to gain height. 滴ang on. We値l get out of this yet.

Lightning lit the sky ahead of us. For a moment, I couldn稚 breathe. 徹h, Force. Jolee, look. That can稚 be what it looks like

Jolee uttered several expletives.

Bearing down on our ship was an enormous tornado.

From MST3K's spoof of "Hercules Unchained"--heard as Roman medic soldiers carry off an unconscious Greek Hercules on a 1950's Army green canvas stretcher: "Hi, we're IX-I-I. Did somebody dial IX-I-I?"

Read The Adventures of Jolee Bindo and see the amazing Peep Surgery
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Last edited by Jae Onasi; 10-25-2006 at 05:48 PM. Reason: revision
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