Era of Rebellion - Navigation

Christopher Levy and Sarah Riggs-Shute.
Zero years before the Battle of Yavin (35:3:14) in the Brentaal system: Warspite.
Major Kerrie Kiley and Inquisitor Serine Thanor.

Major Kerrie Kiley maneuvered her way through the corridors of the Imperial I-class Star Destroyer Warspite. As she moved through the hallway, each junior officer moved out of her way quickly, having heard many rumors about the mysterious Stormtrooper. Her face had a determined, no nonsense look upon it that further instilled fear into the hearts of the personnel she encountered as she strode confidently towards her destination. As she arrived outside of Inquisitor Thanor's chambers, she pulled her uniform cover down from atop her head and tried to put some semblance of a smile upon her face. Clearing her throat, she raised her right hand to the control panel and activated the buzzer to alert the Inquisitor someone was at her door.

The Inquisitor was a bit surprised to realize there was someone awaiting her presence, perhaps Allegra had received some additional information, or perhaps it was another summons to the Admiral's quarters. As the door slid open to reveal the visitor, Serine was... pleasantly surprised to see not only Kerrie, but her would-be rival appearing to be... respectful? Instantly suspicious and intrigued at the same time though neither expression was even hinted upon her face. "Yes, Major?" Said properly as she stood at the door, unyielding, not yet willing to grant access to Kerrie, if access was desired, until more information was gathered. "Do you wish to speak with me privately?"

"Yes, Milady," Kerrie said politely, as she visibly swallowed her pride in front of the Inquisitor. She felt exposed standing in the hallway and she tilted her head, subconsciously looking past the woman towards the room behind her. She shifted slightly uncomfortably, her diminutive frame moving to the right slightly. "If you have a few moments..." she added, her eyes remaining locked on the Inquisitor's as she lowered her head respectfully.

This situation appeared to be... rather... suspicious. Anyone else portraying these behaviors would be perfectly acceptable... and expected, demanded even, but Kerrie acting so... was questionable. Eyes slightly narrowed at the other woman, clearly and obviously suspecting... foul play or worse, but as always, despite the situation, when Serine was on duty, she was an Inquisitor first and her job was vital. "Very well, step inside." Serine would say as she granted access for Kerrie to enter all while eyes washed over the occupants in the hallway, looking for anything out of the ordinary before the door closed, yielding them privacy. "You have my full attention, Major Kiley."

"Thank you, Milady," Kerrie said politely as she crossed the threshold into the Inquisitor's chambers. Noting nothing but a single plant in the room she frowned slightly, reminding her of her own quarters that contained nothing but her stuffed animal. She was not here to be an interior decoration, however, and she quickly refocused herself to get to the point. "I would like to apologize..." she said very slowly, each word having to be pulled out of her like a wisdom teeth. Involuntarily, her hands clenched, twisting and crumpling the hat that she held in her hand.

Eyebrows raised as soon as Kerrie's lips mouthed 'apologize', now she knew what was going on here... someone, probably the good Admiral, was making her do this. "Quite cruel." Said more as an observation than anything. Serine was a proud person, she knew the tinge of defeat sometimes was better than the agony of submitting. It was obvious by the way Kerrie's demeanor appeared to be wretched and contorted when she spoke those words that she loathed every second of it. "I see no reason for apologies, nor do I request them here. If a 'higher authority' suggested this, then how about we skip it and say you did." It was well known that the Inquisitor and the Major... despised each other, but as a fellow warrior to the next, she would find no pleasure in this sort of torture nor would she allow Kerrie to suffer this kind of defeat. "If that is all, you are dismissed."

"No!" Kerrie began quickly as she looked towards the Inquisitor. She shook her head, lowering it dejectedly, as she exhaled a tired sigh. "I really am sorry..." she said again, the words coming with slightly greater ease this time. "I should have briefed you on the mission. Our ... disagreement ... should not prevent objectives from being completed..." she explained slowly, still visibly uncomfortable by the ordeal. It was, however, heartfelt and there was an honesty interwoven with the tone she used. "I do not want this to reach the level of infighting between Traebor and Zevrin..." she explained, lowering her head slightly as she finished her second attempt to apologize.

Serine had to take a few moments to digest what Kerrie was telling her... the woman really did wish to apologize, and for appropriate reasons. She did not realize the Major could be so... decent and mature.  This was turning out to be a conversation with real substance, it was shocking. "I must admit that I did not expect you to have this level of sincerity. Perhaps it would be best to discuss this a bit further." Besides the lone potted plant that Serine loved, the Inquisitor also had a small circular table with three chairs in the middle of the chamber in which she took the liberty to lower herself into one while motioning for the Major to follow suit. "Having that information at hand would have increased my efficiency, indeed, however, I must also admit that I did not give you much chance to disclose that information." Serine watched the other woman... a glimmer of respect starting to brew. "I only regret that somehow an ended quarrel between us would lead to just as many tacky and unfit rumors."

Kerrie slowly moved towards the table, pulling out a chair before sliding into it. "Thank you, Milady," she said as she placed her quite disheveled hat down upon the table. She swallowed nervously, crossing her left leg over her right and placing her hands neatly in her lap. She smiled in the direction of the Inquisitor, raising her eyebrows in a polite gesture. "Do the quarters meet with your satisfaction?" she asked, making idle conversation as she looked over the sparsely decorated room. "Yes..." she laughed quietly, in response to the Inquisitor's comment. "There are quite the bit of rumors about you going around the ship," she observed, amusing herself for a moment by recounting some of the more colorful ones in her head.

"These quarters are completely inspiring and delightful." Serine couldn't be anymore sarcastic, dry humor apparent. "I have the pleasure of spending a lucrative amount of time here and have decided to decorate." Motioning to her one sad and lonely looking plant, the only spot of color in the otherwise sterile off-white room. "Now, if it makes you feel better, you don't have to disclose we comfortably chatted in here. For all of the occupants no doubt pressed to the door right now, it can appear as though we argued." Serine was still not sure how to take this sudden change of heart from the Major, totally unexpected.

"I have long since given up caring what those aboard this vessel think of me," Kerrie explained honestly as her eyes scanned over the room once more. "It's bigger than mine..." she commented, perhaps a bit out of line. At least she had her own room aboard the vessel, which was more than she could say about her previous assignments in the Galactic Empire. She remembered having to share the locker room with the male Stormtroopers on Gateway Space Station and shuddered slightly, still not having recovered from her 'exile'. "I hope that we can continue to spar. I feel I can learn from your methods..." she pointed out politely, offering another kind smile in her direction. "...not sure a whip is suited for my style, however..." she was quick to point out.

"Oh? From what you just disclosed, you appeared to particularly wish for no ill feelings between us. Going well out of your way, I'm still recovering from surprise." This was all so interesting actually, seeing another side of the Major that she didn't realize existed. Serine was prepared to be bitter rivals with this woman until their dying breath because everything about their brief history screamed that was the only outcome. The Inquisitor swiveled in her chair a bit to the right and left after Kerrie suggested they be spar partners, It was just one unexpected surprise after another. "Perhaps there are some merits to that, though watch your behavior if anything should develop." She was insinuating that disrespectful acts such as spitting would not be tolerated, but it wasn't said in a demeaning fashion.

"May I ask you a question, Milady?" Kerrie asked as she shifted forward in her chair. One thing had been bothering her since their last encounter, and now that she had the Inquisitor in private she could not help but ask. A small grin found its way onto her lips as she considered the Inquisitor's words from the other day, replaying the conversation in her head several times as she waited for permission to continue.

"You just asked me a question Major, but you may ask me another." A slight foul taste in her mouth as she considered the other's possible question that was causing Kerrie to grin... more than likely it had something to do with a ridiculous rumor.

"What you said the other day..." Kerrie began carefully, not wanting to reveal quite how easily her ego could be bruised in certain situations. "Did Lord Nam'a'taht really express his regard for me in such a discourteous manner?" she asked, using perhaps an overeducated use of Basic to try and mask how it had pained her. She needed to know, however, whether the Noble had in fact said such things or whether the Inquisitor had fabricated it to pain her.

"Indeed he did. My report to the Admiral was correct on all accounts. I doubt he has ever respected you, he barely respected me, if you could believe that." Serine actually smiled as she thought of something humorous to share with the Major... she felt actually comfortable around the other woman, it was barely fathomable as they had been vicious enemies not but a few minutes prior. "I'll let you in on a funny tidbit, but I'll know if you disclose this information." The Inquisitor paused with a slow grin still etched in her face. "Lord Nam'a'taht is one of the few men to live after unashamedly eyeing my physique while pondering with a cheesy grin. I couldn't believe it, how classless."

"Oh..." Kerrie said as she lowered her head dejectedly. She had recalled her meetings with Lord Nam'a'taht being somehow different, and she had never once noticed him admiring her physique. She could not help but allow her eyes to roam over the Inquisitor's body, comparing it to her own. She tried to smile, but it was hard at the moment. "Well ... if his transports continue to find themselves falling into Rebel hands ... then I doubt he will be admiring any physiques much longer..." she coldly observed, offering a soft chuckle as she plotted the man's demise.

"I had already planned on visiting the 'gentleman' if things continued to escalate, which they no doubt will." She was able to pick up the subtle hint of insecurity from the Major. "Don't take it too personally, he is disgraceful." Serine mused that this was a new occurrence for her, taking so quickly to a woman she had beaten nearly to death. "Curious, I had not planned on sharing a heart-to-heart with you. You must understand, I am still surprised. Perhaps you could explain your reasoning to me in more detail." She was curious to say the least, Kerrie had agreed with clenched teeth to meet her at a yet-to-be disclosed location to battle, probably to the death. How then could the Major come to her on her own free will to apologize. It was remarkable.

"I take my official duties very seriously, Milady," Kerrie began in a serious tone as she looked up from the table to look the similarly-aged woman squarely in the eye. "I have taken an oath of service to the Empire, which I feel I betrayed by not providing you all the necessary details. It has weighed heavily on my conscious in the days since..." she continued to explain, taking her time to elaborate on her reasoning in a calm, composed voice. "I am not a child," she explained as she nodded her head reassuringly. "It was a foolish thing to let a personal matter interfere with the professional. It will not happen again," she vowed in a determined, somewhat elevated tone.

It was very interesting to realize and witness just how much the two shared in common, which could potentially explain their initial strife. "Then let it no longer be a matter that troubles you." Serine took a moment to ponder silently as she watched the other woman, intrigued. "This has been very insightful, Major. Though I admit it was enjoyable to think about ringing your neck with my lightwhip. I would be lying if I said I wouldn't be saddened to be denied that mental image." Serine softly sighed with a smile as she stood to prepare to escort Kerrie to the door. "Is there anything else, Major?"

"I am glad things were able to work out," Kerrie said optimistically as she rose from her chair and offered a polite nod. She began to walk towards the door, but stopped before she crossed the threshold, and looked over her shoulder at the Inquisitor. "Might want to water that plant..." she said jokingly before finally withdrawing from the room. She had earned a deeper understanding of the Inquisitor and a greater respect.

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