"This is *never* going to work," El-Nay Darr
commented, as she watched Grand Moff Rodney attempt to
squeeze himself into a set of armor they had acquired.
"I told you we needed a bigger size, but you never
listen," she continued, as she brought her arms up and
folded them in front of her chest. "Here," she said, as
she stepped forward and attempted to pull the chest
plate down over the aging man. "Ugh," she groaned,
gritting her teeth, before releasing her grip and
looking towards Kerrie and Sierra. "Look. Either of you
ever seen a Gamorrean? I can take a quick trip to
Tatooine, kill one of the little buggers, and bring back
the armor for the Governor to wear. With the kind of
guts those creatures have I'm sure it'll fit," she said,
before she backed away from the scene and took a seat to
watch what would happen next.
Commander Kerrie Kiley had made the decision on the
set of armor they had acquired for the Governor, but she
was a terrible judge of body size. "I apologize,
milord," she said to him, as she began to panic,
bringing her hands together as she nervously
intermingled her fingers. "El-Nay! Stop! You're going to
hurt him," she said, as she scolded the Mandalorian,
before looking towards Sierra. "Perhaps a pill that
could get the water weight off?" she asked Sierra,
desperately seeking a solution. When El-Nay started
rambling about Gamorreans, she turned her head slightly
to glare at her, before raising her right index finger
to silence her. If a solution was not found she feared
she would be held responsible.
In hindsight, this had been a pretty good idea.
Kerrie acquired the armor, which would, in theory, fit
Claudius with no questions asked. Sierra was standing
behind her husband attempting to pull down the chest
plate from the backside. "That talk is for quitters,
El-Nay." She groaned. The idea of finding Gamorrean
armor wasn’t a bad one, but they didn’t have that kind
of additional time. She wondered if they should gather
butter from the kitchen, slather it on Claudius, and
pray that it worked without hurting him *too* bad. She
stopped pulling on the armor when she realized it wasn’t
going to work. "No... He’ll spend the next hour in the
refresher. Here. Take it off." She needed El-Nay’s help
in order to remove the armor. It was ill fitting, simple
as that. "Maybe we can expand it underneath the armpits.
Do you have anything to cut the armor with?" She thought
that maybe they could alter the armor just like Sierra
had to do with the Squibs’ dresses occasionally. She set
the chest plate down, making her way into her closet to
retrieve the hidden armor which El-Nay and Kerrie had
given her long ago. Somehow, the smell had gotten out of
it. Instead, it smelled like bubble gum. Clearly,
Ewwiekewwieikkie had found it. She gave Claudius a look.
"I’m sorry, love. We’re going to solve this without
seriously injuring you." Sierra promised.
Claudius had remained silent throughout the whole
torturous ordeal. There was nothing more humiliating
than discovering the armor would not fit his present
condition. Well, there was one thing ... discovering the
armor would not fit in front of his wife, Kerrie, and
El-Nay. His face was flushed red, but whether it was
from anger, embarrassment, or a combination of both was
not immediately certain. "I am *not* wearing Gamorrean
armor taken off a corpse," he said, as he, too, shot a
glance in the direction of El-Nay. As the armor was
stripped off him he turned his back on them, bringing
his hand up to his stomach. He inhaled sharply, before
trying to suck in his gut. "I am sorry for the delay,"
he said to Sierra, who was busying herself with another
set of armor. When he heard her discuss 'expanding' the
armor it only made him feel worse.
When El-Nay felt the glares from Kerrie and Claudius
she raised both of her hands and began to backpedal.
"Sorry," she said, before muttering something
indistinguishable beneath her breath. "We're going to
need a lot of expanding," she said, as she moved towards
Sierra to help her with the other set of armor. "I mean,
I can cut it," she said, as she raised her gauntlet and
activated the torch for a moment, while giving her a
little smirk. "What did you have in mind?" she asked
her, as she began to lay out the two sets of armor. For
a moment she stopped, twitching her nose a couple of
times. "Why does it smell like that?" she asked, as she
shook her head and rolled her eyes.
Sierra laid a hand on her husband’s back. She felt
bad that the armor that Kerrie had retrieved was far too
small. Her arms briefly wrapped around him to comfort
him. "Don’t be. Thank you for dealing with this so you
can come with me." She whispered. Claudius proved to her
time and time again that he was husband of the century.
Sierra had to wonder if this time took the cake.
Reluctantly, she parted with him to work on the armor
with El-Nay. "I was thinking we can cut it right here."
She said, showing El-Nay the spot beneath the armpit.
She drew a line with her finger. "We can do that on both
sides, and add pieces of this armor." Her eyes flickered
to the other set. "What do you think..?" She could smell
it too. Instead of enjoying the scent, her nose
scrunched up. "Ugh." An instant later, she felt
nauseous. She recalled certain scents making her sick
during her first pregnancy. This bubble gum smell had
her stomach doing cartwheels. Sierra stood, gripping her
stomach. "M-Make it work. Ugh!" She darted towards the
refresher to experience the first round of morning
sickness in many, *many* months.
"Where does it go?!" an excited Ewwiekewwieikkie
asked Melickielickie as they occupied the refresher that
Sierra desperately needed. She hit the lever to flush
the toilet for the umpteenth time, watching the water
get sucked down and disappear. "Hmm. Hmm. Hmm," she
contemplated, as she brought her paw up to her chin and
tapped her foot while considering it. "Under the house?"
she theorized, as she looked towards her adopted Squib
sister. "We can put all our things in here and then
it'll get transported under the house where no one can
find it," she said, as she started grabbing silverware
and attempting to flush it. She wondered why she had not
thought of this sooner.
Melickielickie couldn’t comprehend what was going on
with the toilet. She watched curiously as the water
swirled and disappeared. "Eeeeeeeee!" Melickielickie
pushed her head behind the toilet. "No here." She said,
darting over to the other side of the toilet. "No here."
She looked up at the ceiling. "*No here*!" Where could
it go? Her older Squib sister’s explanation made sense.
She imagined the ducks in the front yard playing with
the silverware. Since she liked the shinies so much, she
thought the ducks would too. "Oooo!" She grabbed a
handful of spoons and threw them in the toilet. "We hide
our treasure." She said, wrapping her arms around her
sister and squeezing tightly to see if she would produce
The door slammed shut behind Sierra before she
realized she wasn’t alone. "Girls!" She exclaimed. Her
stomach won a silent argument, and she was forced to
lose her breakfast in a trash can. No sooner had she
finished did she heard the sound of something colliding
with the porcelain toilet. What were they...?! "Ohno."
Sierra spotted the silverware clogging up the toilet.
Water was beginning to rapidly fill the bowel. Without
thinking, she reached her hands into the bowel and
grasped as many pieces of silverware as she could. "Ewwiekewwieikkie,
Melickielickie, the toilet is only for potty time." She
began explaining. She felt like she was going to need a
shower after this. The water stopped flowing just before
it made a mess all over the floor. "You see, when you
flush something that doesn’t fit in the toilet, it
breaks the toilet. You never want to put *anything* like
this inside of it." She said, resting the damp
silverware on the ground before turning to the sink to
"Oh noes! She found the treasure!" Ewwiekewwieikkie
whined to Melickielickie as Sierra began handling the
silverware. Her little feet began to go up and down
anxiously as she counted each piece as they were laid
out on the floor. She was shaking with anxiety over even
losing one piece. "Not safe! Not safe!" she told
Melickielickie, before diving on the floor and grabbing
as much as she could. "C'mon," she told her, as she
grabbed her by the arm and led her out of the refresher,
and then out of the estate itself. Once she was outside
she began to nervously look for a hiding spot, but
Stormtroopers were everywhere. "Um. Um. Um," she
panicked, before noticing the newly constructed duck
pond. "Oh. Maybe there's where the toilet goes," she
said, suddenly feeling very smart. She was halfway to
the pond when she caught a glimpse of her father's
shuttle. Her eyes went wide and she gasped, before
dragging Melickielickie towards it. As she bounded up
the ramp she opened up one of the storage containers in
the back and began filling it with her silverware. "Hmm.
Now we gotta protect it," she declared, before helping
Melickielickie into the crate. She was next to climb in,
before closing the lid on top of them, and occasionally
peering out with her yellow eyes. She giggled, believing
no one would ever find them.
"Oh noes!" Melickielickie squeaked. She grasped the
bottom of her dress to make a sack where she could shove
more silverware than she could carry in her paws. The
little Squib darted after her sister as quickly as she
could go. There was a trail of spoons from Sierra and
Claudius’ room down to the bottom of the stairs.
Outside, Melickielickie was momentarily distracted by
the ducks. "Quack!" She mocked, then burst into giggles.
"Quack! Quack! Quack!" She pretended as if she was a
duck, waddling beside her sister until she was taken
elsewhere. "Weeee!" By now, she had dropped roughly half
of the treasure. She thought her sister to be quite
smart. Melickielickie wanted to be just like her when
she grew up. "Woah. Cool hiding spot." She said, patting
the crate until she was lifted into it. Though it was
dark inside, she felt safe cuddled next to her sister. "Eeee.
I love you, sissy!" She snuggled Ewwiekewwieikkie. Now
Sierra wouldn’t be able to trade the silverware.
Roughly ten minutes later, Sierra left the bathroom.
She avoided the armor on the bed. "Were you able to
expand the armor, El-Nay?" She asked, deciding not to
mention the bathroom debacle to Claudius at the moment.
Instead, she sat on the bed and let her stomach
relocated to its proper position. She was feeling
anxiety having to do with going back to Delaya. There
was no way to tell what would be waiting there for her.
El-Nay probably should have taken her project
outside, but not being the least bit aware of her
surroundings she had began cutting the armor right on
the kitchen floor. "Somewhat," she said, now from
beneath her helmet, as she had placed it back upon her
head to keep from getting sparks in her eyes. A
surprisingly appropriate caution for a woman not exactly
known for being safe. "Here. Try this," she said, as she
handed the modified armor back over to Sierra. After
what had just happened she was not about to attempt to
force it on the Governor by herself again. She began
looking towards the exit, as she would make a speedy
getaway should the armor not fit even after the
She was less bothered by El-Nay being careless in her
kitchen than the Squibs attempting to flush every shiny
object in the house. At least she had taken proper
precautions to not hurting herself. "Thank you." Sierra
took the chest piece from her. If this didn’t work, than
the embarrassing situation was only going to get worse
for her husband. Sierra turned to Claudius with a little
smile on her face. "This should be better." She
promised, carefully placing the armor on him. It fit. It
fit perfectly. They wouldn’t need to cut it off to
remove it either. Sierra let out a sigh. Her smile
widened. "There. How does that feel?" He was going to be
able to accompany her to Delaya. His presence made her
feel charged and ready. She had spent so much time the
prior day gathering all the evidence she had against
Gaius. All she needed was for Claudius to be there too.
Claudius had been dreading this moment ever since he
watched the Mandalorian begin cutting the armor. It was
a humiliation that was unfolding in a manner that only
seemed to make things worse. He was hoping that the
armor would be ready before Sierra returned so that he
could test it without her there, but unfortunately she
was ready before the armor was. Another thing to blame
El-Nay for. To his relief the modifications to the armor
did make it fit easier, and as Sierra placed the armor
on him he could actually breath and move about. "Don't
tell her yet, but she actually did a good job," he said
to Sierra, quietly, in regards to El-Nay.
Sierra was happy to see that the armor was no longer
constricting him. The volume of her voice dropped,
"Don’t praise her until we get back." She leaned forward
to steal a quick kiss. Sierra would take care of all of
his negative feelings once they were on the way to
Delaya. It had been a trying morning for him. Now that
Claudius was prepared, Sierra plucked up a clean, ironed
uniform and offered it to Kerrie. "Thank you for doing
this, Kerrie. I don’t want anyone to be suspicious about
Claudius’ absence." She turned away from the Commander,
stepping into the kitchen where Bruce had been sleeping
in his bassinet. She scooped her son up into her arms
and began placing kisses on his chubby baby cheeks. "I
love you. I’m going to miss you so much."
Kerrie was upset that she was being left out of the
mission to Delaya, particularly given the history of
attacks they had endured while on the world. She
consoled herself with the knowledge that she had been
entrusted to watch over their children, but it was a
particularly bitter pill for her to swallow that El-Nay
was going. "Of course, Milady," she said, as reached out
and took the Grand Moff's uniform. She gave a careful
glance to Claudius upon realizing she would have to make
an adjustment to how large of a stomach to shift into.
"Don't do anything stupid," she said to El-Nay, as she
again raised her finger, tapping it against the T-shaped
visor of her helmet. "In fact don't do anything unless
they tell you to," she said, in perhaps too harsh a
criticism. "Fear not, milord, milady ... no harm will
come to your family whilst you are away," she vowed,
confidently, as she moved to join Sierra at the
El-Nay was relieved to see that the armor fit,
grinning from ear to ear beneath the privacy afforded by
her helmet. When Kerrie began to chastise her she stuck
out her tongue and began to make silly faces at her,
which of course could not be seen. "I'll wait on the
ship," she said to Sierra, as she could see there was a
tender moment beginning that she would only be in the
way for. Without making another comment to Kerrie in
response to her lecture, she slipped past everyone and
moved towards the shuttle, not noticing the silverware
that Melickielickie had dropped. When she arrived on the
shuttle, she sat down on the crate containing the two
Squibs, not being perceptive enough to notice their
presence. Once safely on the shuttle she reached to the
sides of her head and pulled off her helmet, setting it
beside her, as she waited for the Rodneys to arrive.
El-Nay and Kerrie were back to bickering like an old,
married couple. Sierra wondered if they had made up from
what had happened in the Void. It wasn’t any of her
business, so she wasn’t about to butt her head into it.
All she could do was hope for the best. "I trust you,
Kerrie." She said, nodding to El-Nay. Sierra assumed the
Squibs had moved on to playing in another bathroom and
didn’t think to check on what they were up to. She took
the moment to love on her son, then offer him to his
father so Claudius could say his goodbyes too. It was
necessary to leave Bruce here. Sierra was convinced that
Bruce had indirectly caused the thranta to attack Papius.
The next time something like that happened, she wouldn’t
put it past Papius to try to punish the boy. Her fingers
brushed over Bruce’s sprouting blonde hair. "Mommy and
daddy will be back as soon as possible." She promised
Claudius reached out to take Bruce from Sierra,
having a difficult time holding him because he was now
in a suit of unfamiliar armor. He smiled down at his
baby boy, wishing that he did not have to leave him, but
Sierra needed him more. He lifted the boy while
simultaneously lowering his head and placing a kiss upon
his forehead. When the last goodbye had been sent, he
placed the boy back down in the bassinet. He considered
going to say goodbye to Drusilla and the Squibs, but
that would only turn the long goodbye into a neverending
one. "The sooner we go ... the sooner we can get back,"
he told Sierra, logically, before moving with her from
the estate towards the shuttle. As he boarded the ramp
he gave a polite nod to El-Nay, before taking his seat
in the co-pilot's chair. As he attempted to strap the
safety harness across him, due to his increased weight
and the bulk of the armor it would not snap into place.
"Blast!" he cursed, as he gave up with the eternal
struggle. He folded his arms in front of his chest as he
stared out the viewport in silence. "Just take off," he
told Sierra, before letting out a sigh.
Sierra glanced down at her son one last time. Knowing
he was in good hands made it easier to leave. At the
same time, she loved her family and hated parting from
it for any amount of time. She turned away from him,
quickly making her way out to the shuttle with her
husband. Sierra took her place in the pilot’s chair and
quickly began making take off preparations. From her
peripheral vision, she saw Claudius struggling with the
safety harness. There seemed to be no winning today. Her
hand briefly rested on his arm. She felt gratitude for
all the hoops he jumped through to come with her, but
did exactly as he said. The Kwai blasted off from
Esseles. It wouldn’t be long before they were in Delaya
again. Sierra silently wondered if they were ready for
what was coming.