Garrison on Delaya was a particularly subversive
structure, whose lower levels were dedicated to the
torture and interrogation of Alderaanians suspected
of having ties to the Rebel Alliance. Governor
Papius Arundel spent more time in the bowels of the
garrison than he did in his office and sometimes he
would torture people without even asking questions
just to hear them scream. Today his torture wing was
home to two very important guests ... Commander Iyah
Xergo of the Rebel Alliance and Mug Zoran, the
bastard Delayan noble. He had placed each one of
them in a separate holding cell and bound them
carefully, but rather than strap them to a table as
he did with Ashori, he allowed them to be upright in
a restraint, that slowly rotated them around the
room. He sat in the control room with Ashori
watching Iyah and Mug spin around endlessly in a
form of psychological torture. His technicians were
nearly ready for the psychological warfare he had in
store for the two. Simply beating them would result
in nothing but defiant and misinformation. To get
what he needed he would have to break their spirit
and crush their souls. Fortunately, Papius was an
expert at both.
The plan had
all gone so smoothly. Ashori had successfully aided
Papius in her first mission as a double agent. She
stood, watching Commander Xergo and the bastard of
Delaya in their individual cells. She could only
imagine what kind of thoughts were running through
their head. The way Ash saw it, their predicament
was so much worse than her own. Papius had only held
her to prove that she could be valuable, right? Her
memories were distorted from the time while he
tortured her. She looked over at Papius and began to
talk. "I don't know too much about Iyah. I do know
that her mentor, Derek Aito, was killed during a
mission on the Retributor." The details of that
mission were something she did not know. "I heard he
was killed from the inside out by the High
Inquisitor." She revealed in attempt to further
please him. "As for the bastard... A simple refugee.
A one night stand. A *mistake*." Her voice was cold.
She intended to watch every second of their torture.
"And don't forget the daughter."
Commander had not made a peep since surrendering.
She accepted her fate at face value: she had been
caught. She *would* die. Mug *would* die. Her
distress signal had been a desperate attempt to get
one of them out alive. All they could do was wait
and hope that someone came for them.
was aching. The continuous spinning had made her
vomit on herself, and the floor, several times
already. Internally, she was immensely stressed.
Every time she blinked she saw the face of her
crying daughter. She heard Callista screaming for
her Mama and Daddy inside of her head. The Imperial
Governor had done *nothing* to her, yet the
psychological torture had already begun.
slowly around his cell gave Mug ample time to
consider his fate, which he was sure what his
captors had in mind. The one saving grace he could
take from his ordeal was the fact that Callista had
been left behind and not subjected from this.
Whatever the Governor did to him he was sure he
could stand, but what he could not stand was knowing
the same thing ... or worse ... would be happening
to his beloved Iyah in the next cell. He wished to
get the interrogation over with and the execution if
need be. For Mug the waiting was the hardest part.
technician nodded at Papius, a demented smile curled
upon his lips. He leaned to his side to place a
quick peck on Ash's cheek, before rising from his
seat, while simultaneously pulling down his uniform
to correct the bunching up that occurred when
seating. "I'll be back. You should enjoy this," he
said, before leaving the control and making his way
into the corridor that led to the detention cells.
He looked at the doors that led to Iyah and Mug as
he considered which one to venture into first.
Ultimately, he decided to open Mug's cell, which he
slowly sauntered into. "You honor us with your
presence, milord," he said, condescending as he
stepped into the room. "Had I known I was going to
be entertaining a member of the nobility I would
have prepared something more ceremonial in your
honor," he said, smugly, before moving towards a box
that he had placed in the room. "I've gotten you a
gift. A 'welcome home' present, so to speak," he
said, as he slowly opened the lid of the box. He
snorted sharply as he pulled from within it a mockup
of the Delayan crown, shoddily constructed and put
together. He moved towards Mug, and raised himself
up onto his tiptoes to place the crown upon Mug's
head lopsidedly. "Something to consider ... what
could have been," he said, coldly, before walking
out of the room to allow the man to contemplate his
He gave a wink
to the camera where he was confident Ashori would be
watching on the edge of his seat. There was
something more thrilling about doing this with an
audience. He waited a moment, collected himself, and
steadied his breathing before opening the cell that
contained Commander Xergo. "Commander," he said,
starting out almost professionally and
matter-of-factly. "I cannot tell you how
disappointed I was to learn that you fled Delaya
prior to my being installed as Governor," he said,
frowning at her slightly. "It is fortune that you
felt the need to come back, lest we would have never
had the opportunity to meet," he said to her, as he
slowly moved towards her. "We both know his lordship
in there isn't the sharpest bulb in the already
dimwitted and incestuous pool of genetic filth that
is the House of Rodney. *You* are the brains of this
operation," he said, at once flattering her and
unleashing his disgust for all things Rodney. "So
why don't you spare him needless torture and
suffering and give me the information I need," he
said, before bringing his hand up to touch at the
side of her face. "So young to be a Commander in the
Alliance. *You* must be *special*," he said, with a
smirk before backing off from her. "While you were
enjoying yourself in the castle ... what members of
the House of Rodney gave you aid?" he asked,
revealing his hand. This was not about capturing
more Rebels ... he wanted to take down the Grand
Moff and his family.
entirely different to be on the other side of
torture. Ash grinned wide when Papius kissed her
cheek before leaving to center his attention around
the Rodney family's bastard. He had chosen such a
fitting gift that she gave out a hard laugh. For
her, it was much more appealing when the Governor
moved to Iyah's holding cell. Ash had become
displeased with Iyah. Even though they were the same
age, it was Iyah who had been promoted. Ash
typically worked harder missions than she did...so
why did Iyah receive such recognition? Why not her?
She *wanted* Iyah to suffer for all of her crimes
against the Empire. She sat at the edge of her seat
and watched for her own entertainment.
lifted. Her eyes stared at the wall which she
theorized Mug was behind. "I'm so sorry, Mug..." She
said to no one at all. As badly as she wanted to
save him, it was impossible. Regardless, Iyah pulled
against her restraints. Her body began to spin as
she tried. Her death would be incredibly
painful...but his death may be worse. As the bastard
of House Rodney, it was likely that the Governor
would present him to someone even worse than
himself. What could she do to save the love of her
trying when Papius, the terrible man, entered her
cell. There was no way to hold composure when you
were in the position Iyah Xergo found herself in.
She looked tired; defeated. Her thoughts shot back
to Ashori's betrayal. How could she?! She was
responsible for the death of her group of Rebels.
Iyah was willing to bet that *she* had killed her
comrades. Her teeth clenched together roughly. He
spouted nonsense about Mug. His blood may have put
him in the House of Rodney, but he would never be
one of them. Furthermore, he continued to insult
Mug. The hair on the back of her neck stood up. If
Mug hadn't been imprisoned, she may have done
something desperate...something stupid.
Papius had her
in a trap. If she didn't answer his questions, it
was Mug who would suffer. Iyah prepared herself and
begged Mug to understand if there were questions
that she could not answer. In order to keep Callista
safe, her parents would have to suffer. She closed
her eyes and turned her face away from him when he
touched her briefly. His hand left her cheek
burning, the skin peeling from bone. His first
question was, thankfully, an easy one to answer...
if he believed her. "None of them gave us aid. We
discovered that my jacket with the Rebel insignia
was gone. The members of House of Rodney were
looking for a reason to drive us away. I had no
doubt that one of them stole it and that the Grand
Moff would come for us." She explained to him as
truthfully as possible. Her voice was shaking. Her
body trembled. Yekaterina was *dead*.
*That* was not
the answer that Papius wanted to hear, but he had
ways of getting the answers he wanted ... even if
they were not the truth. "Oh come now, Commander.
*Think* about whom you are protecting," he said, as
he moved towards a chair in the corner of the room.
"Are the Rodneys really worth being tortured and
executed for?" he asked, as he sat down in the chair
and looked across at her. "...are they worth *never*
seeing your daughter again?" he asked, as he brought
his hand up to his cheek while studying her more
intently. "The Grand Moff's own daughter was a
member of the Alderaanian resistance," he said,
unaware that the teenager still lived. "Surely you
must have heard *one* of them say something about
the destruction of Alderaan," he said, excitedly, as
he leaned forward in the chair, leering at her.
"Perhaps ... perhaps Sierra said something," he
suggested, as if coaching her.
struck her...Were the Rondeys worth being tortured
and executed for? Mug's father had been such a
horrible person. He hurt Mug's mother. He hurt Mug.
Marcus Rodney had only reached out to them to
convince Mug to take the Duchy. Claudius Rodney was
an Imperial Grand Moff...and his wife, an ISB
officer. The only Rodney worth dying for was Mug. He
struck her again with his words. Bringing up
Callista caused a visual reaction. Iyah's head
snapped upward. Her eyes reflected absolute sadness.
Her baby girl... the thought of never seeing her
again was destructive. All Iyah wanted was to find a
way for her, Mug, and Callista to be together again.
It was relieving to hear him talk about Jelena
Rodney. Derek's death wasn't completely pointless.
The Imperials still thought Jelena to be dead. The
question was, could *she* make the same sacrifice he
had? No. No she could not. She looked down as if she
was thinking. "Um..." Sierra. She was an ISB
officer. She *deserved* to suffer. It should be her
on this chopping block, not Iyah. "Sierra..." She
mumbled. "I've heard her talking." It was an ugly
thing for the Commander to do. It was also her only
chance at survival. "Sierra's home planet is
Alderaan." She informed Papius, aging with each
word. "She was not happy that the Empire destroyed
it. She wanted to help us. She started feeding us
Imperial secrets." Iyah closed her eyes. "She warned
us when her husband found out about Mug and I being
Rebels. She gave us the chance to escape." Her eyes
opened again. Her lies were painful. Her image of
the Rodney family was tarnished by Julius, but they
were still *people*. "That's the truth!" She
croaked. "Can I see Mug now..?"
The grin that
formed upon Papius' face when Iyah gave up Sierra
was almost painful. His lips curled upward into such
an extreme angle he worried his face would split in
half. He took a moment to celebrate in silence
before taking a deep breath to become calm. "Oh.
You'd like to see, Mug?" he asked, as he rose from
his seat and began moving towards the door.
"Unfortunately he confessed much quicker than you
and has already been released. He had quite the bit
to say about you and your operations," he said,
before giving her one last grin and bowing his head
to her. He then abandoned her to her cell to
consider what she had done, before moving into the
control room to see Ashori. "That was easier than
expected," he said, before moving back towards her.
In an uncharacteristic move he grabbed her by the
hips, lifted her in the air, and spun her around.
"Prepare an arrest order for Commander Sierra
Rodney," he barked to his aid, before moving to
watch the monitors once again.
All the air
had been punched out of Iyah in a single blow.
No...Mug wouldn't! He would never leave her here! *I
believe in you*, his words from the previous evening
echoed in her head. She wouldn't blame him if he had
lied about Sierra Rodney...or any of the other
members of his family. Still, she didn't know what
to think. If he was still here, how badly had he
been hurt? Iyah hung her head down and began to cry
silently. Her tears dripped down her cheeks and onto
her uniform. She had stupidly allowed herself to
imagine growing old with Mug. She thought that they
would die together, not alone, separated by an
rooms, Ashori watched her old Commander crumble. She
thought it was touching how Papius ended on such a
dark note. Those words were going to eat at that
woman as long as she stayed strung up and bound
inside of the garrison. Ashori stood, showing him
the full smile on her face. "Your skills are
incredible." She complimented him. Quite suddenly,
he swept her off her feet and spun her in the air.
The celebratory motion was greatly enjoyed by the
ex-Rebel. When he stopped, Ashori stayed at his
side. "I can help you prepare something special for
our new guest. We wouldn't want the Grand Moff's
wife to feel uncomfortable, now would we?"