Night had turned
to morning aboard the Imperial I-class Star Destroyer Warspite.
Inside his cabin Admiral Claudius Rodney rested comfortably in his
bed. It had been another long day of reassuring local politicians
that all was well, while simultaneously stressing to his junior
officers that he must see marked improvements by the end of the
month of High Command would be displeased. He had been assigned to
the Ringali Shell for several months now and while there had been
frequent starfighter raids and insurgent attacks planetside, no
incident could have been characterized as a "disaster." That had all
changed several hours ago, however he had not yet been made aware.
If he had known, he surely would not have been able to sleep so
comfortably in his bed.
sound of an alarm buzzer broke the tranquility of the Admiral's
bedchamber. "Ugh," the Admiral groaned as his eyes opened a bit
suddenly. He exhaled a heavy sigh as he sat up in his bed and rubbed
at his eyes for a moment. Finally, his attention turned to the door.
"This had better be important," the Admiral snarled as he turned his
legs to the side of his bed and set foot upon the cold floor. He
checked to make sure the button of his fly was secured and moved
towards the cabin's door to open it.
The door opened
with the familiar hiss of pneumatic pressure. On the other side
stood Major Arden Zevrin, the Sector's ISB Officer. She was cold,
ruthless, and calculating. She knew better than to wake the Admiral
for anything trivial. A minor matter she would surely choose to
handle herself so that she could receive the Kataran's share of the
credit. However, with the news she had in store for the Admiral
tonight she had no choice but to disturb his peaceful rest. A
diplomatic smile formed upon her lips as she addressed her
commanding officer, "I am sorry for disturbing you, Milord, but
there has been a development that warrants your immediate attention.
May I come in?"
sighed at Major Zevrin as he walked away from the doorway and took a
seat in front of a small circular table. "Very well, Major," the
Admiral sad tiredly, "Very well."
stepped forward into the Admiral's cabin. She often daydreamed about
the day when she would command such power that she could have a
quaters such as this. She walked towards the Admiral in a
professional stride and took a seat opposite him. She looked across
the table at him and her diplomatic smile turned into a grim
expression, "There has been a development on Ralltiir, sir."
"Oh damn," the
Admiral cursed in frustration. Ralltiir had been the most
troublesome of all the planets in the Ringali Shell. Ralltiir was
the last place he needed to hear from bad news. He sighed again and
shook his head at her, "What happened?"
attempted to forcibly remove a member of Ralltiir's legislature from
office," Major Zevrin explained to the Admiral using terminology
only the most cold-blooded individual would use. "Unfortunately for
the Major ... the Representative's family was with him at the time."
"All dead?" the
Admiral immediately questioned, his own face now turning grim.
Major Zevrin informed him after a brief pause.
Admiral asked her again.
sir," Major Zevin explained. Her expression did not change. To her
they were all guilty of treason and all should face the Empire's
slammed his fist down against the glass top of the table he was
seated at. The glass cracked from his forceful impact and tore into
his hand. "Damn it," the Admiral exclaimed, "The operation calls for
subtly. Not a fireworks display."
"If only he
would have listened more closely to you, sir," Major Zevrin said in
a quiet, concerned tone. She saw the initiative. Her chance for
power would finally come and she would play him like an instrument
she had when she was a child. "From my first days in the region I
have agreed with you that our operations must be subtle. He was
always against you and now look at the results ... Ralltiir on the
verge of open revolt."
ignored the pain in his hand and simply lowered his head and shook
it in frustration.
leaned forward across the table and took the Admiral's bruised hand
into her own. She caressed it lightly, all the while plotting. "Do
not concern yourself with this, My Lord," she said compassionately,
"You know that I have always supported your policies in the region.
Leave that venomous kath hound to me." A sly grin appeared upon her
face, noting the Admiral had lowered his head and would be unable to
sighed once again. There would be hell to pay for this incident. He
had to move quickly or the citizens of Ralltiir who were previously
unwilling to support the Rebel Alliance would surely see this as
their excuse to move against the Empire.
"You are tired,"
Major Zevrin explained to him, as she wiped away the blood from his
hand. "Do not allow yourself to worry about Major Tong. Get your
rest. You will need your strength in the morning."
nodded to Major Zevrin and withdrew his hand from hers. "I want him
alive," the Admiral instructed her as he returned to his bed.
sir," Major Zevrin said as she rose from the table. She nodded to
him respectfully, turned on her heel and headed out of the cabin.
Once outside of the Admiral's cabin a sadistic grin curled upon her
lips. Activating the first comm panel she could find she contacted
the Admiral's chief henchwoman, "Major Kiley ... I need you to order
a company of Stormtroopers to Cormond immediately."
never slept it seemed. From her usual position in the Warspite's
barracks she responded to the ISB officer through the comm. panel, "Cormond?
"The Admiral has
authorized me to deal with Major Tong," Major Zevrin explained.
will order them to the Major's safe house to apprehend the unit and
bring them to the garrison," Major Kiley replied.
Zevrin responded in an angry tone, "Instruct the troops to eliminate
Major Tong and his entire unit. There will be no trial. They will be
made scapegoats and served up to the people of Ralltiir."
paused for a moment before questioning Major Zevrin through the comm
panel, "The Admiral has authorized such a tactic?"
authorized it, Major," Arden replied in a commanding tone, "You have
dealt with the ISB before ... if you doubt my orders I will give
them to your replacement and you can return to one of our
Kerrie replied to the Major. It was true ... the ISB had made her
life tremendously difficulty. She both respected and feared her
walked away from the comm panel and entered the turbolift. Her sly
grin turning into a cruel smile. She even laughed lightly at the
situation. She was very pleased with herself.