Era of Rebellion - Navigation

Alice Bee and Christopher Levy.
One year after the Battle of Yavin (36:2:32) in the Alderaan system: Delaya (Marcus Rodney's chalet) and Gilded Thranta.
Lord Marcus Rodney, Lady Zara Rodney, Commander Iyah Xergo, and Mug Zoran.

Mug Zoran was battling mixed emotions as he settled into the back of the Gilded Thranta. While he was glad to have his fiancé, Iyah, back with him, the loss of Callista was devastating. She was an innocent in all this. She did not ask to be a pawn in some game between the Rebellion and the Empire. Part of him had missed Callista more than Iyah. His arm wrapped tightly around Iyah, as tears were welling up in the corner of his eyes. "I'm sorry I lost her. I'm so, so sorry," he told her, as he finally became overwhelmed, the years flowing from his eyes as he felt the full effect of the loss. "We'll get her back," he pledged to her, as he felt the shuttle lift off and blast away from Delaya. He had one simply job ... to watch Callista ... and he had failed ... *miserably* ... and he knew it.

Iyah felt like her heart had been ripped from her body. That terrible ISB woman was holding Callista! Her daughter had slipped before her fingers just like the snow. She looked miserable as she clung to Mug for support until they could embrace one another inside of the Gilded Thranta. She buried her head into his shoulder, unleashing all her tears into his Rebel uniform. "I'm sorry... I didn't know they had her. I didn't know she was so close." She felt like she could have done more. She wondered what they had told Callista, or if her daughter was scared and thought she'd been abandoned again. She didn't see this as his failure, or anyone else's failure. It happened far too quickly for them to stop. Her body felt so weak and horrible. Pain grasped her heart so hard that she fell to the ground, hugging Mug's legs while her body shook. "We *have* to get her. We have to save her. They must be keeping her at the estate on Esseles... We have to go there now!" She was so weak. She was not in the position to rush into a place, dirty with Stormtroopers, to steal her daughter. Could Jelena Rodney protect her baby?

Mug foolishly thought if they got married it would solve all of their problems, but he was wrong. "We can't, Iyah ... we can't," he said, clinging to her, trying to protect her from the outside world. "It's too well defended. They'd probably just kill her..." he said, sadly, swallowing slowly in such a way that caused his throat to bulge. He loved Iyah very much, but they were not a complete family without their Callista. "I promise you I'll keep fighting to get her back," he said to her, fighting back the tears, as he did his best to console her. The flight back to the Ringali Shell would be particularly painful, as they would pass through the system where their daughter was being held. They would be close, yet so, *so* far. It was killing him, but the Empire had given him no choice. He hoped Jelena would be able to protect Callista, as he prayed his Alderaanian relations would not be so vile as to harm an innocent young girl.

How could people be so cruel hearted? Callista was *four*. She wasn't trade bait. Iyah recalled listening to Callista talk endlessly about her uncle and her new best friend. Maybe, just maybe, they'd show mercy on the sweet girl. The powerlessness was a weight so heavy that it threatened to crush them both. "No.." She couldn't think about Callista dying. She wanted her daughter back right *now*! Iyah forced herself to stand, looking at her sweet husband who was enduring the same hell she was. She took him, held him, and began to comfort him just as he did for her. Her fingers moved in and out of his wild hair. "I promise you I'll keep fighting to get her back," she repeated. Their daughter had to come back someway, somehow. For now, Iyah's mind was shattered. She was not a productive soldier anymore. "I love you. I'm sorry everything that happened like that. I should have never brought us to Esseles..." Her other hand rubbed his back. She felt less confident about her life choices. They had caused her to lose Callista. Was Mug next?

"You didn't pick the mission, Iyah," Mug told her, rising to his feet to keep encouraging her. "Command did. You never could have foreseen what happened," he said, as he moved to wrap his arms around her. "I love you, Iyah. And we will be a family again," he vowed, dramatically, before moving his lips to hers, pressing them passionately against her. Their tears mingled as their faces collided, burning their eyes as the passion between them burned as well. "We will get her back and add to our family," he promised her, as his hand moved up her back, rooting itself in her flowing black hair. She was so beautiful, and he felt so lucky to have her. He wanted to marry her so badly, but he also knew it was important to have their princess, Callista, there as well. "Perhaps Marcus and Zara can help us? They did not seem as bad as the others. I'm sure they won't stand for her being held as a political hostage," he suggested to her, as he grasped at straws to get his baby girl back.

Today, it became necessary that they use each other for support. Losing Callista could tear them apart, or bring them together and make them stronger. Her arms returned around him. Mug's dramatic vows and his passions brought Iyah's heart back together again. They would be a family again. She cried harder, kissing him. They shared passion. They shared sadness. They shared *everything*. "We will. We'll all be happy. You, me, Callista, and any others." She, too, wanted to marry him badly. She had intended to marry Mug after the Esseles mission, and that would still happen once Callista was back. After all, she was the promised flower girl. It was a chance to make her feel like the princess that she had nearly been. She looked in his eyes. He made her feel like everything would really work out.

When Mug brought up Zara and Marcus, Iyah didn't reject the idea. Zara had treated Callista so sweetly, especially when her daughter adored the woman so much. She had never felt that Marcus was a bad person either. He certainly wasn't involved in the affairs of his brother and the Empire. She looked at him. "Let's do it. We'll go back to Delaya as soon as we retrieve my ship. What his brother is doing is wrong. Maybe... Maybe they will help us." She was aware that the deal had occurred just outside his home, though she hadn't seen it. If the man had a shred of good in him, he would help.

Marcus Rodney was already stripping out of his armor as he returned to the chalet where he expected Zara to have an onslaught of questions. Her being left out must have killed her, he worried, and he would do his best to fill her in as best possible. "Honey you wouldn't believe it. The sea monster nearly derailed the whole thing when he attacks Sierra's transport," he informed her, as he placed his helmet on the table, and then shifted his attention to the rest of the armor. "Jelena looked well," he explained, as he began to strip right in front of her. They had settled into married life and most of his manners had gone by the wayside. He no longer had objections to marching around the house in his underwear ... or less. "Kerrie was there to help, and she brought El-Nay of all people with her," he said, with a smirk, as he began to place his armor back in storage. He never knew who was bound to stop by. "The bastard was there on the Rebel side," he explained, as he hid everything behind the wall. "The one thing I didn't expect was that Claudius and Sierra are holding little Callista as collateral to ensure the Rebels didn't get out of line," he said, as he put a robe over his body and moved to sit with Zara in the living room.

Zara greatly disliked not being apart of the action. She had lingered near their large, bay window. She could see absolutely nothing. She could hear nothing. Now, she was *finally* going to get some answers. She was seated in the living room with a cup of hot chocolate in her hands. There was a second cup on the coffee table for her husband to consume. Zara snapped her fingers, "Well, Sir Tentacles nearly solved some of our problems..." She was still on the line about Sierra. While she felt like the woman had been handed a bad set of cards, Zara questioned if she was playing it right. Regardless, that was Claudius' problem now. If he wanted to be with an ISB officer, then so be it.

"It's too bad you didn't get to spend more time with her. I really wanted to meet her." She sipped on her beverage and watched him strip. There was no question of their privacy. Zara, herself, wore a comfortable see-through nightie to remind her husband that pregnancy hadn't caused her to lose a lick of her sexuality. Besides, it always turned her on when he was in his armor. "El-Nay? Seriously? I'm shocked things went so well." As to Zara's feelings on that woman, well, they were clear. There was one thing that Marcus said that was massively upsetting. "*What*!? They are doing *what*!?" Her ears must have deceived her to hear that her brother and his wife were holding a little girl hostage. She set her mug on the table before it ended up broken against a wall. "Callista? The tiny refugee girl, right? Surely that can't be. That's low, even for the ISB."

Marcus was quick to take the cup of caf that was offered him, as it promised to warm him up on what had been a particularly cold night. It was as if the planet knew what was going on and responded by lowering the temperature even more dramatically than normal. "Yes. I'm afraid so. It seems that the ISB will stop at nothing," he said, disgustedly, as he shifted his attention towards his wife. "Do you still have an active feed of the ISB cameras on the Retributor?" he asked, as he took a sip of the caf. He wondered what other secrets about Sierra and the ISB were yet to be uncovered.

She wore a disturbed look on her face. It was one more threat to add to the twins. Zara wanted to save Callista and return her to her rightful place. "They are horrible!" She shouted. "I'm going to punch Sierra next time I see her! We have to save her. Your brother doesn't seem like the kind of man to hurt little girls. I can't say the same about the ISB..." Her hand brushed over his. "Yes. I've concealed my presence in the Retributor. I'm sure that they don't know about me." She reassured him, her body tilting into his. "Do you think they took Callista there? If we can find her, we can take a trip to see Doctor Tohan..." Zara was desperate.

"Don't go punching anyone. That's your hormones," talking, Marcus said in jest, as he paused to count the days until the twins were likely to arrive. "I don't even want to imagine where they're holding Callista," he said, as he moved his *very* pregnant wife towards the terminal where they had the connection to the data spike aboard the Retributor. "Just ... no more sex tapes," he begged his wife, as he helped her down into the chair. "I don't want to find out Claudius' Chiss tactician is caught up in a romance with Doctor Tohan. Neither my eyes nor my heart could take it," he teased her, as he pulled up another chair behind her. He rested his chin on her shoulder as he watched her do her wonderful work of slicing into the Imperial cameras.

"Speak kindly of the hormones." Zara said jokingly, half-seriously. Time was ticking down to D-Day. She avoided thinking about all of that. She was supposed to arrange some sort of breathing class, as well as decide a medcenter. For now, she was furious with Sierra *and* Claudius. She waddled towards the terminal. There, she sat and began typing away in attempt to find her niece. She nose cringed. "Ewwww!!! No! Stop!! Don't say that! Not Doctor Tohan!!!" Despite all odds to block a disturbing image out of her head, Zara couldn't stop it. She whimpered, closing her eyes tightly. "You're a meanie! You've disturbed me and the babies!" A little bit of comedic relief was necessary sometimes even if it meant that Zara would be scarred for life. "Hmmm.. Look, there he is, fully clothed." She grinned as she skipped through the live feed. "Callista, where are you?" She brought up Arden's cameras.

Marcus relied on his wife to get to the bottom of this. The brother that he knew never would have kept a child hostage. Of course that same brother was the one who just sucker punched him and married a childhood friend of his daughters who was in the ISB. More and more he felt like he knew less and less. As he watched the footage of Sierra going about her business aboard the Retributor he wondered what the next shoe to fall was. When he saw her alone in her quarters with Doctor Tohan he was horrified that the sex tape he teased about was about to come to life on the screen. He lowered his head, using her back as a human shield to cover his eyes. "Please, please, please," he mumbled into her back, as his hands tensed around her, squeezing onto her for dear life.

Following Sierra's movements seemed like the most logical way to find Callista. If the little girl was on the Retributor, then there was no way Sierra was staying away from her. She jolted upright when she stumbled upon the footage of her sister and her doctor together, *alone*. "Marcus, you have doomed us all!" She squeaked, hiding her head in her hands. If her hubby got to avoid seeing the strange, intimate affair, then so did she! However, things played out differently. Peering out from between her fingers, Zara watched something else unfold altogether. It was hard to see the tiny pregnancy test in Sierra's hands, but she did notice a familiar tool in Pilaq's. "Oh my god!!!" She sounded horrified, as if the act they both feared was unfolding between her eyes. "What is he doing to her!?" She bit on her lower lip so hard that it began to bleed. One of her hands dared to leave her face to turn up the volume on the video. *The cheap test you purchased has indeed proved to be accurate...* Zara was leaning forward now. Eventually, more surprising words than the last came out of her doctor's voice. *You are blessed with a son.* Pilaq's words hung in the terminal. If she had heard them, then Marcus had too. "Ohfuck." They'd just stumbled on another bombshell.

When Marcus heard Doctor Tohan declare Sierra to be pregnant with a son he lost his balance, and tumbled from his chair onto the floor behind Zara. "What?!" he exclaimed, as he looked up at the monitor from his hands and knees on the floor. "Play it again," he said, as he rose back up, and stood next to her. "Well, at least Darrus is off the hook," he said, with a smile, as he cast his eyes down at her. He could not believe that the young ISB agent had already skillfully gotten herself pregnant by his seemingly changed brother. He could not believe the old boy did it. He would have congratulated him under different circumstances. As he listened to the recording several times it dawned on him that Sierra was now entrenched in Claudius' life and there'd be no removing her now. "A son..." he repeated, sounding shocked, as he gradually resumed his seat behind her to cope with the news.

"Are you okay?!" She reached down towards the floor in attempt to help him back up. Zara replayed the video from when Pilaq had shown up. Now she noticed what Sierra was holding in her hands. The positive pregnancy test was right there. Everything was as Pilaq confirmed. She played the video over and over again. There was a ray of light which Marcus had pointed out. Sierra and Claudius had set their boy free. That made her smile, all things considered. "I'm so happy about that! I was worried your father would start grooming him for the throne as soon as he could." She sat back in her seat and let herself feel absolutely relieved. She watched Sierra happily hug Doctor Tohan. Even if they couldn't understand what was going on between the ISB officer and Claudius, perhaps it was working out for Marcus' brother. Zara clutched his hand as she slowly rose from her seat. She hugged him. "He won't be much younger than our own." She sighed. "I feel like the more we learn, the more complex it is to mend relations with your brother. I'm sorry I ever meddled, Marcus."

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