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Kit Gwynne and Christopher Levy.
One year after the Battle of Yavin (36:2:11) in the Essesia system: Interrogator.
Commander Kerrie Kiley and Colonel Mark Veller.

Paperwork had no respect for major operations. It kept piling up no matter what other priorities needed to be handled. So it was, Mark was in his office trying to catch up a little bit. Another pot of caf had been brewed and Mark was working his way through it, going through the readiness reports and the other last minute items that needed to be handled to ensure the operation went as smoothly as possible.

Sitting at his desk, a few datapads here and there, he was currently assigning assets to targets, the planet showing on his holoterminal. When the door chime rang, he answered, "Come in," and waited to see who needed to see him at such a late hour.

Commander Kerrie Kiley had rushed back from the surface of Esseles after resituating Forn Troop, the group of mercenaries contracted by the Inquisitor, in The Void ... the facility recently captured from the Black Sun and rogue elements of Imperial Intelligence. The duty of overseeing the storm commandos and the bounty hunters was proving to be quite taxing, and now she found herself running through the corridors of the Imperial II-class Star Destroyer Interrogator in order to report to the Legion's High Colonel, Mark Veller. Without time to change into her uniform, she was still wearing the black armor of the commandos. Physically it resembled common Scout Trooper armor, but was painted a dark shade of black that caused fear and intimidation in her targets, while also allowing her to hide in darkness and avoid some sensors. Stepping foot into the Colonel's office after receiving permission to enter, she assumed a rigid posture in front of his desk. "Sir, Commander Kiley of the ShadowWhispers reporting as ordered, sir," she said, snapping the heels of her boots together to accent her words forcefully. The Colonel would be able to easily determine her gender not just by her voice, but also the fact that she was quite short for a Stormtrooper at just 1.57 meters.

Mark looked up from his desk at the entrance of a Stormtrooper Commando in armor. He frowned slightly at the wearing of her helmet, but he was aware she had just arrived and had other duties to handle as well. Everyone on the Interrogator was busy getting ready for the assault. "At ease, Commander," he said, the with a nod indicated the fresh brewed caf, "Fresh brewed caf if you want it. And have a seat."

Mark pulled up Kerrie's personnel file on his datapad and quickly scanned it while she was getting her caf and sitting down. He frowned a bit in reading of the demotion.

"Yes, sir," Kerrie said, as he reached to the side of her helmet, and pulled it from the top of her head, revealing a relatively attractive human face, unscarred by war, with deep blue eyes and reddish brown hair that was ornately braided and pinned up at the back of her head. "No thank you on the caf, sir. I've hit the ground running and was hoping to snag some rack time sooner than not," she explained, as she took a seat in one of the chairs opposite the Colonel's desk. She offered him a half-smile, not particularly used to being the subordinate in these sorts of encounters, as until the other day she had the full weight of the office of Regional Governor behind her, despite her mid-level rank.

"Understood, Commander, understood," Mark said, "I am given to understand the Bounty Hunters the High Inquisitor has... acquired have been transferred to your care. If you are in need of additional resources, Sergeant Batua has had dealings with them and can be made available upon request." His ice blue eyes studied the woman before him.

"I have berthed all your men together. If you wish to station some of them at Void to assist with the Bounty Hunters, which might not be a bad idea both for security and as a fast response to whatever missions the Bounty Hunters are on, you may. I only request you keep me informed on where the Commandos are stationed," said Mark.

"Since the records are sealed, I do not have the information on your demotion. However, serve well and I will see about restoring your rank," he paused for a moment, "The performance of the Commandos will greatly influence any promotions. You will be responsible for them. Whatever training or equipment you need, send the requisition and I will see that it gets filled.

"Commander, my door is always open to my officers. I expect if you have a problem, you will bring it to me so it can be sorted out. While I also expect problems to be handled by my officers, I expect my officers to know the difference.

"Any questions, Commander?" he asked.

"Yes. That is correct, sir. Inquisitor Thanor was quite explicit in her first order that the bounty hunters be removed from the Interrogator, and I have stationed them, appropriately, on the surface. I have read your Sergeant Batua's reports on the members of the troop, and I, personally, have previously worked with El-Nay Darr and Alexis Lyra," Kerrie reported, diligently, as she folded her hands over her lap and began to intermingle her fingers to expend nervous energy. "I tell you, candidly, Colonel that the commandos are quite eager to prove themselves in the field of battle. While they were honored to be chosen to protect the Grand Moff and his family, they did view the amount of idle time as *wasted*," she explained, choosing that last word very delicately for political reasons. "As to my rank ... I feel I have ascended as far as I am to go in the service," she said, not wanting to explain to the Colonel her complex history with the ISB commander whose complex history had resulted in her demotion and reassignment. "I will not fail you or the Inquisitor, High Colonel. I will see that the commandos perform the duty that they have been exceptionally well trained and prepared for. I *will* take Sergeant Batua if offered. In my capacity as adjutant to the Regional Governor I frequently reviewed sectorwide reports, and I have my eyes on several Stormtrooper officers and NCOs who might suit the unit. I would request your help in cherry picking the garrisons to suit our purposes. As the commandos have been on personal protection duty, some of the garrison troopers have more field experience against the Rebel cell," she reported, reluctantly, before silencing herself to wait for her superior's reply.

Mark smiled slightly, "I am glad to hear that Commander. I look forward to working with you and your commandos. As for Sergeant Batua, I will assign him as the liaison between the Void and the Interrogator." Pausing a moment, he continued, "I am pleased you have been transferred here. I was only recently assigned to the Interrogator and someone with an overall view of the area is appreciated. As for personnel, definitely, I look forward to your insights. Sergeant Batua, however, stays with me. Let me know whom else you would like to recruit, but not him."

He looked about to dismiss her when he said one other thing, "Oh, the Bounty Hunter Tonric Sevese is not under your orders, but mine instead, or Inquisitor Kaen, though you might be the handler for certain missions. He is here on a different line. Any problems you encounter with him are to be reported to me. Understood?"

"Very well, Colonel. Whenever that many Mandalorians are in close proximity I get nervous. It is wise of you to segregate them, if I may say so, sir," Kerrie commented, with a firm nod of her head. "I welcome this new assignment as well, Colonel. I look forwarding to assist the Inquisitor in her efforts to pacify the Oversector," she added, perhaps unnecessarily, as she began to long for some rack time. Spending time with Dimona Xirie Nuebla was enough to exhaust anyone. "Understood, sir," she said, obediently, with what she hoped for a final nod to the High Colonel.

"Fair enough, Commander, and I agree," said Mark, "Now go get your men bunked and get some rack time. We have a major operation in a few days, I need you and your commandos combat ready. Dismissed."

"Sir, yes, sir," Kerrie replied, as she stood from her chair and placed her helmet back upon her head in one fluid motion. She placed her left heel firmly upon the floor and rotated 180-degrees until her back was facing the man, marching out of her office and back into the corridor. She made a point to check on Captain Updike to see how the commandos were acclimating after being transported up from Esseles, and then collapse in her rack for as long as her duty would permit. The Colonel seemed like an affable fellow, but she knew that any failure or shortcoming on her part, or those under her, would ultimately be dealt with by the High Inquisitor ... who was many things ... but not *affable*.

Mark returned to his work, hoping he has impressed upon the new officer he expected her to do her job and didn't really care how, just so long as it was done. Time would tell.

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