Era of Rebellion - Navigation

Alice Bee and Christopher Levy.
One year after the Battle of Yavin (36:2:32) in the Essesia system: Esseles (New Calamar: Claudius Rodney's estate).
El-Nay Darr, Commander Kerrie Kiley, Grand Moff Claudius Rodney, Lady Jelena Rodney, and Commander Sierra Rodney.

El-Nay Darr had been stripped of her armor and was tied to a chair, motionless, battered, with a face covered in blood. None of the Imperial Stormtroopers knew what happened, other than the Mandalorian had penetrated their no fly zone in the possession of a supposedly dead Jelena Rodney. Was she a clone? Was this a Rebel plot? No one knew, and no one was taking any chances. Slowly her eyes opened, and she attempted to lift her head, but it quickly fell back down as it felt much too heavy. "Ugh," she groaned, wondering what happened, as she fully expected to be rewarded for delivering not Jelena ... not tortured. "What?" she asked, as she weakly struggled against her restraints, again trying to lift her head unsuccessfully. This was turning into another very bad day.

Jelena Rodney was wrapped in a blanket, slightly shivering, as the idiotic Mandalorian had dropped her into the pool when the Stormtroopers began firing. As she sat there looking at El-Nay she could have said a word to help the young Mandalorian, but her mind drifted to the beating she gave her months ago ... so she said *nothing*. "Thank you," she said, when she was given a hot cup of caf to warm her. Her two hands clung to the mug, allowing the warmth to flow through her entire body. The first sip was enough to warm her, and as she looked across at the blood stained faux blonde, she could not help but smirk beneath the rim of her cup. All of the bad that had happened to her had caused her to become *vicious*.

There was a shout from outside the guard house as Grand Moff Claudius Rodney desperately tried to battle his way in, but the Stormtroopers on duty would not let him in until they determined exactly what had happened. It was a frustrating thing having all of the power on paper, but none of it in practice. If his daughter was really in there, he *had* to see her. He began pacing about angrily, wondering where Sierra was, wondering if the baby was alright. He balled his hands into fists, slamming them into his thighs, before crying out in an incredibly loud scream. His protests had gotten him nowhere, and he bitterly retreated to the duracrete bench near the garden to sit down, collect his thoughts, and wait for them to grant him access.

Commander Kerrie Kiley was doing her best to carry a battered Sierra Rodney through the streets of New Calamar. Unfortunately, she was smaller than Sierra, and was finding it difficult to lead her through the bustling streets. She knew it would be a scandal if they ended up in the local medical center, but she was running out of options. In a bout of anger and lack of composure she withdrew her KYD-21 blaster pistol from her holster and forced a civilian out of their speeder. "It will be returned to you," she said, tiredly, before throwing Sierra in the back like luggage. Climbing into the driver's seat she began to accelerate through the streets of New Calamar and up the mountain road that would lead to the Rodney estate. Unfortunately, neither she, nor Sierra, were in uniform and it would be very hard to explain this to the Stormtroopers at the checkpoint. Everything they had worked so carefully on for days was going up in smoke because Sierra could neither pilot the transport, nor drive the speeder. She wondered if the young girl was even old enough to have her license. As she approached the checkpoint she realized she had no authorization to be there anymore, and that the regular Stormtroopers did not care for her. "Wake up," she said, as she reached over her shoulder to shake Sierra. She was both the Governor's wife and his adjutant ... Sierra belonged there, but she no longer did. She closed her eyes and slowly shifted her shape into a Rodian to make it look as if she were Sierra's alien driver. She hated having to hide her identity, but it was a necessary deception and would fit in with the Stormtroooper's xenophobic beliefs. She slowly drove the speeder up to the checkpoint where she hoped Sierra would be able to talk them through, or she would likely end up in prison.

After the crash, Sierra had become absolutely useless. She was but a heavy heap which Kerrie had to navigate with and ensure that they didn't end up in a medcenter. The plan had gone accordingly ... until they made it to Esseles. Jelena's vomiting had turned everything topsy turvy...or was it Sierra's uneasy hands? Regardless, the blonde reeked like vomit. Pieces of her and Jelena's lunch painted her clothing along with a mixture of her own blood and snot. The collision with the dashboard had effectively broken her nose, causing more blood than necessary to stain her face. She looked much more bruised. As she began to wake to Kerrie's shaking, she realized she felt like she'd body slammed a rock. Her chest ached. A nasty headache had already settled in. "Mm..." She groaned, touching her bloody face with a single hand. Her eyes opened to find a Rodian in her presence, not Kerrie's human face or even her Clawdite one. ''Fuck!" She exclaimed. "What the hell happened?"

She couldn't even recall how so much vomit had ended up on her. Sierra's mind strung forward rapidly. Jelena was not with them. Was she safe? The sight of the checkpoint made her produce another groan. "This day will never end, will it?" She scrambled to sit upright. There was a blanket on the floor of the back seat. She grabbed it, draping it over her body so that one mess was not noticeable. As for her face... She rolled down her window with a seemingly irritated expression on her face. A Stormtrooper peered in at her, then at her Rodian driver, then back to the wife of the Governor. "Ma'am..." His voice began. Sierra's eyes narrowed. "Not everyone enjoys an ISB officer. Let me into my home. I need to see my husband." She snapped. With that, the final security gate opened up. Her window zipped back upwards rapidly. "Where's Jelena?" Hopefully at the estate. Seeing it brought relief to Sierra. She wasn't terribly concerned with her wounds, however, she did feel worried for the infant growing in her womb. She wanted to summon Pilaq immediately. With all that was going on, she feared that his presence would only raise red flags.

When the speeder stopped, the blonde-headed woman got out. She leaned against the speeder, head pressing into a wound on her forehead. "Shit... I crashed the speeder, didn't I?" It was all rolling back to her. She noted that the Stormtroopers were bustling around home. From there, all she had to do was listen. A woman in orange armor had been captured. A clone of Jelena was with her. She looked to Kerrie. "Please find Claudius and let him know what's happened. I will see to El-Nay and Jelena." With that, Sierra was gone. She stomped towards the guard house feeling furious. She wasn't going to let them fall out of the race right at the end. After some choice words (and hand gestures), she gained access into the guard house. At that point, Sierra developed severe tunnel vision for the Stormtrooper in charge. She could be seen berating him for arresting guests who were *supposed* to be added to the approved guest list. She claimed that the Jelena they held was merely a clone of the highest degree which she intended to use to cheer her husband up and that El-Nay was a close, childhood friend. She drained her hormones all over the poor bastard. Beneath his helmet, she had surely made that man cry. "Fucking assholes," Sierra approached El-Nay first, freeing her of her seat. "Send her belongings back to the house before I have you all reassigned to the belly of Hoth!" She helped El-Nay to her feet, then looked at Jelena. "Get up. We're going to see your father."

"I much prefer the guard house," Jelena said to Sierra, as she watched her clumsily help the Mandalorian who was falling in and out of consciousness. "Are you just doing all this to give him a heart attack so you can inherit everything?" she asked her former best friend, as she rose from her chair with grace and dignity. "Behind me," she said, throwing a cutting glare towards Sierra, before she raised her chin like the noblewoman that she was and began to march out of the guard house towards where her father was. This was not a reunion she wanted. She suddenly missed the crowded, filthy Rebel space station deep within the nebula. "Father," she said, without making eye contact, as she turned her nose up at him and instead looked towards the estate where her sisters were. She missed them, and that was the silver lining she would take from this.

Claudius' head rose when he heard the footsteps approach him, but he assumed it was one of the Stormtroopers coming towards him. But as they drew nearer he heard the footsteps as more gentle, rather than the plodding heavy steps of a Stormtrooper. Was it Sierra? Was it Kerrie? A range of emotions danced over his mind until he slowly raised his head. He feared his brown eyes failed him as he caught a glimpse of the angelic sight of his eldest daughter, with the sun shining down behind her. He rose from the bench, but stumbled, falling to his knees in front of her. He wept tears of joy as his miracle was granted, reaching deep inside of him to find the strength to rise back to his feet. He wrapped his arms around his daughter, holding her tighter than he had ever done before. "I love you," he said to Jelena, as he turned his face to place a kiss upon her cheek. With his chin resting upon his daughter's shoulder he looked towards his beloved Sierra, who was a physical mess. "Thank you," he said to her, as he looked towards her. It seemed he had everything. Now it was just a question of whether he could hold onto it.

Jelena knew where to direct her low blows. She verbally punched the air right out of Sierra. Claudius having a heart attack over all of this was one of her fears. The thought of losing him was more painful than being blown up repeatedly a thousand times. Sierra had been effectively shut down. She stood, feeling like she was running out of gas, with El-Nay. If Jelena didn't step off of her high horse sooner than later, Sierra might snap. She was not so dainty and weak anymore. Given her position, she had to create a harder exterior. Her efforts with El-Nay were quickly abandoned in the garden. "Sorry..." She placed the Mandalorian woman on the ground. She would see that medical attention found her as soon as possible.

Sierra was not long behind Jelena. Seeing her and Claudius reunite was enough to make everything worth it. She watched her husband cry while embracing a daughter who he had lost. Still, Sierra understood that this reunion might not run smoothly. Jelena had experienced Claudius as the father he was, not the father he intended to become. She was aware that there was no love from daughter to father and felt it necessary to linger close should Jelena's rage center around the love of her life. She looked to her husband, nodding her head to his thanks. She would do so much more to bring his daughter back to him. Sierra continued on towards the bench near Claudius. Her hand patted his back reassuringly. It was done. It was over. At last, Jelena had come home. The reunion felt ... bitter. Jelena didn't want to be there, and if not here, then where *did* she want to be?

Jelena froze as her father embraced her. She allowed him to hug her, but she certainly did not return the gesture. "Father. I am tired. I wish to retire," she said, more like a robot than a human being, as she began to pull herself away from her father. She gave a side eyes glare in the direction of Sierra, before she moved up the sloping terrain towards the estate. She wondered if her room had been left intact, and she planned to spend time with both Drusilla and Ewwiekewwieikkie for the first time in months. There was also the matter of the little girl, Callista, being held hostage, whom she had sworn an oath to look after.

El-Nay was unceremoniously deposited on the ground, weakly attempting to catch her breath. "Hey!" she yelled at Sierra, as she suddenly felt abandoned, struggling to get back to her feet. She recognized the Grand Moff from her first attempt to capture Jelena and, not wanting to be forgotten again, clawed her way back to her feet and began walking towards Claudius and Sierra. She outstretched her hand to the man, as if she expected to be paid right there on the spot. "You're welcome," she said, as she brought her other hand up to her face to wipe away some of her blood from her mouth. "You should pay me double since your little security force shot me down," she muttered, as her eyes looked towards the Stormtroopers. Her eyes looked glazed over, as if she was suffering from a concussion. She was standing, but she was barely upright. She was wobbling badly, trembling, and even the slightest gust of wind was liable to send her tumbling to the ground.

"Yes. Of course. Get some rest," Claudius said to Jelena, oblivious to the fact she was cold to him, and in the middle of a squabble with Sierra. He was so happy to have everyone back under his roof that he could not pick up on the complex social situation that was unfolding around him. As El-Nay approached he did not notice her, nor did he hear anything she said. Instead, he moved towards Sierra to make sure she, and their son was ok. "You did it. I'm so glad. Are you alright?" he asked, as he attended to Sierra lovingly. He brought his hand up to her face, gently checking each of her cuts and bruises. He was no doctor, but he hoped that it looked worse than it actually was. "Should I send for Doctor Tohan?" he asked her, as he began leading her towards the estate where she could properly lay down.

"Is she alright? Excuse me? Hello?" El-Nay asked, incredulously, as she was ignored by the Grand Moff. She took a step towards him to protest, but it proved to be a step too far. As she took that step she suddenly felt very lightheaded. Her eyes rolled with it, and before she knew it she was falling forward onto the ground. She was out before her body collided with the grass below, an unconscious remnant of a Mandalorian. Once again she had born the worst of it, and nobody seemed to care. It was her lot in life.

Sierra's heart sunk. Jelena took the first out that she could, and her father was too grateful to see it. She said nothing while watching the young woman make her way to the estate. Perhaps a break was exactly what everyone needed. A horrible stench filled the air, which Sierra quickly verified to be her. Ugh. Her face dropped into her hands to endure a fight with the sickness building towards her throat. This all could only play out badly. There was nothing she could do to stop Claudius from getting hurt. She feared they would only be able to keep Jelena for so long before she took flight, or scorned her father to the point of release.

It was surprising to see that El-Nay could still move and that she was bold enough to ask the Grand Moff for payment. Sierra would see to it that the Mandalorian and Kerrie were rewarded for their assistance in some way or another. She had nothing but exhaustion and sickness to offer for now. Sierra dropped her hands in her lap. It was best to ignore El-Nay entirely for right now. Even if Jelena wasn't happy about it, being reunited with her husband was wonderful. Her hand touched his leg slowly. "I'm okay. The day has been impossibly long." She admitted to him while he looked into her wounds. The only major injury was a broken nose, but even that could be tended to. Facial wounds were damn good at being dramatic. She stood, allowing him to lead her back home. "I'd really rather not summon him. He's been having to make so many house calls lately." She would see how she felt once she took some time to relax. Clutching Claudius, she looked behind her back at El-Nay, who had now passed out. She hoped that Kerrie would find her and provide assistance. That poor woman seemed to have the worst of luck.

Upstairs, Sierra leaned over the bathroom counter. Her hand ran through her hair. A persistent headache was continuing on. "Everything was going so smoothly," she reported to her husband, forcing herself to stand upright so she could begin removing her clothing. "Then she threw up in my lap, *I* threw up in my lap..." And her perfect driving record had officially gone out the window. Kerrie would never allow her to pilot, or drive, anything ever again. She reluctantly began to remove her clothing. First her pants, which she promptly disposed of in the garbage can, followed by her top. Her torso was bruised, though she said nothing about it. The shower water was already running. All she needed to do was pull the effort together to get in and wipe the blood away. Tears swept from her cheeks suddenly as realization overcame all of her other emotions. "She's back, Claudius." Yet Jelena hated her so much.

Claudius dutifully followed behind Sierra, as if he was walking on clouds. He could not have been happier. "She threw up?" Claudius asked her, choosing to remain in the bedroom and give her privacy in the bathroom. When he heard the shower water running he became more bold, slowly peeling off his uniform until he joined her. "I am glad. And I have you to think," he told her, as he followed her into the shower. He had completely ignored the efforts of Kerrie, El-Nay, and even his brother ... the credit went entirely, unfairly, to Sierra. As he stepped in the shower behind her, he wrapped his arms lovingly around her, placing the palms of his hand where their unborn child was slowly coming to life. As the shower water rained down upon them he began placing tender kisses upon the back of the neck. "I love you," he told her, as he drew her more near. He was the happiest he ever remembered being.

"It was nerves, I'm sure." Sierra wasn't going to bring her fight with Jelena to her husband. He was so happy. She was willing to lay down her long time friendship for that. She immediately began working the blood away from her face. The warm water was a welcomed change on her battered body. She questioned if she should call for Doctor Tohan, though the pain was all centered far away from the middle of her body. She was surprised that he decided to join her, given that she looked like she was prepared to scare small children on Halloween. Sierra found herself in his arms; the one true place where she could unwind. Her hands touched with his. Normally, she wouldn't selfishly take all the thanks. Today, his gratitude felt good. "You don't have to thank me. I love you. This is just kinda what I do."

Her eyes closed. His contagious happiness began to sink into her, despite how sad she actually felt. Jelena's words were whispers in the back of her head that she couldn't defend herself to. Her best friend saw her in the light of a treacherous whore, key on seducing Claudius for fame and fortune. Obviously, it wasn't like that at all. "Kerrie deserves praise as well. She saved me from ending up in a medcenter and potentially exposing our secret." She added, thinking of the small Clawdite as a friend now. "I love you so much. After all the hard times, it makes me happy to see you like this."

Jelena Rodney spent a few moments checking in on Drusilla, Ewwiekewwieikkie, and Callista, before settling into her room. She could hear the noises coming from her father's suite and she bitterly rose from her bed to put a stop to it the only way she knew how. She moved to the control panel in the corridor that she had utilized in the past so many times to sneak out. However, this time her attention turned to the temperature controls in her father's refresher. With a smirk and a giggle she disconnected the heat flow, which would cause nothing but frigid cold water to be dumped on her father and former best friend. That would put a stop to anything she decided to herself, before closing up the panel, and retreating back to her bedroom in victory.

Soon all the concerns and negativity dropped away from Sierra. She let herself feed off of her husband's happiness, and eagerly engaged in some intimate acts within the warm shower water. She came to see eye-to-eye with him. They did have *everything* right now. Somehow, her begging for Jelena to be brought back to life had worked. She wasn't alone anymore. In fact, the presence of their son in the womb only made their relationship that more long term. No matter what anyone thought, Sierra and her husband knew the reasons behind their marriage and love. As things began to heat up more between the two, the water above suddenly became as cold as the tundra she'd visited earlier in the day. "S-So cold!"

However, Jelena didn't get what she wanted. All the cold water did was provide a brief intermission for the inevitable. Sierra happily dried her husband off, then escorted him back to their bed, where it was warm and comfortable, to finish the act. Jelena's first act of rebellion hadn't phase her. She simply settled in on top of her love to warm him once more. Her hands cupped his face. "I'm feeling much better," she admitted, truthfully, before resuming right where they had left off.

When the water suddenly turned iced cold he cursed the Imperial forces guarding his estate for draining all of the energy with the security precautions. He hurried out of the cold water, which had a greater effect on certain parts of his body. He shivered as Sierra moved towards the towels, drying him off. "I'm glad," he said, as he brought a towel up to dry off her much longer hair as best he could. There was so much of it that it nearly exhausted the tired old man. "So tell me. How did it go? Did the Rebels give you any trouble," he asked, as he slid her into a bathrobe, before putting one on himself. Unfortunately, he did not pay enough attention and found himself in her smaller pink robe, and her in the massive blue one. As they both moved back towards the bed a smile formed upon his face that had no indication of leaving anytime soon.

She appreciated his efforts. Her blonde, long hair tended to be a pain at times. She certainly didn't have it in her to sit and dry it. Sierra felt *good*. She felt really good. To her surprise, she found herself in his big, comfortable blue robe which had his scent attached to it. Given the fact that woman *love* the scent of their men, he wasn't getting back his robe for the time being. She giggled to see him in hers. Ah! This was love.

She came to settled with him on the bed, having been left tired from such an exciting day. She lay on her side, eye-to-eye with him so they could talk together. "There was no trouble from the Rebels. It didn't even look like they had ever laid a hand on Jelena. My ship nearly got eaten by your brother's sea beast, but that was the worst of things. I gave them Xergo and obtained Jelena." She prayed he wouldn't notice the handprint on her cheek. Her hand brushed over his face slowly. "The flight home was good. The speeder accident, obviously a mishap on my part." She knew that her and Jelena would butt heads again. She was probably furious thinking of them together behind closed doors like this. "Sorry everything didn't end so smoothly." She looked a little embarrassed. She didn't only strive to be a good wife, but a good adjutant too. "What home okay? Other than being stressed out of your mind..."

"Smooth enough," Claudius said to his wife lovingly, as his hand traced over her delicate facial features. "You have brought my family back together," he said to her, affectionately, as he wrapped his arms around her tightly. "In this you have proven my trust in you in all things is warranted. No one ... not even Arden Zevrin ... can question you again," he said to her, as he began showering her with kisses. As he held her there was an unexpected sight on the bed behind them. It was a blue plush Ewok. He moved towards it slowly, opening the card. It was a congratulatory note from the witch he had only just mentioned. She had been watching. She *knew*. His heart sunk, and he took the stuffed animal into his hand, throwing it at the wall angrily. "I think we'll be conducting business from Esseles. Let her have her dreadnought," he said, bitterly, as he pulled his wife down on the bed with him. Nothing like a little intimacy to channel his energy in a positive direction.

It was rewarding seeing Jelena again, but the words that her husband spoke to her surpassed that. Tears slid from Sierra's eyes. She'd unexpectedly proven herself to her husband. The pain that Arden had caused them seemed to shrink. He trusted her. He saw her as more than Arden's plaything which she had thrown towards the Grand Moff. "Claudius..." It was so sweet. Each kiss increased her good mood. Confidence swept through her mind, as if they could do *anything* together. Her arms locked about him. The day had turned from horrible to amazing all because of the man in her arms. She really couldn't survive without him. She had come to him needing him so much more than she could ever explain.

The blue plush Ewok caught her eyes when he moved towards in. Sierra hadn't gone shopping...was it from Pilaq? The gesture was sweet and the effort that went into making it happen was much too much for the old doctor. "What's this..?" She peeked into the card, halfway expecting it to be from the Emperor along with another invitation to dinner. Not pregnant, Sierra had barely survived the feast of raw foods. A pregnant Sierra would lose her meal on the spot, if indeed her stomach didn't turn inside out as soon as she saw raw nerf. The whirlwind kind of ferocity that had caused her to attack Arden released into her mind as she realized that the card was from her. Her body became tense. She *knew*. "I agree..." She was reluctant to allow Arden the dreadnought. Their baby's life was too important to risk there.

Instead of letting her anger sweep over her, she allowed for Claudius to numb her mind. Had he been there with her when she decided to launch an attack against Arden, then it probably never would have happened. She happily embraced the idea of channeling her energy in other ways. Her small hands opened his robe, then did the same to her own so that their bodies could be together once more. The more heated it became in the bedroom, the less panicked she felt. Arden wasn't going to get the chance to take their baby away. Nothing could spoil what they had. Kissing him, she reunited with her husband in the greatest way possible. Today, the good outweighed the bad. As angry as she was, this was another moment to be treasured.

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