In orbit of
the planet Delaya an Imperial I-class Star Destroyer
had deployed a pre-fabricated garrison base to the
surface of the planet, near the capital city of
Leiliani. The base was accompanied by Stormtroopers,
walkers, and even TIE strikers. It was a most
unwelcome sight to the population, particularly the
survivors of the destruction of Alderaan. From the
upper levels Governor Papius Arundel looked out at
the city ... what he could see of it through the
layer of pollution ... and saw nothing but Rebels.
In the lower level he had Lord Marcus Rodney
imprisoned, who he believed to be a Rebel
sympathizer and responsible for the death of the
Emperor's advisor. Everything was fitting together
nicely in his mind. Grand Moff Rodney's daughter was
a traitor so it was logical that his brother was
also. Soon he would deploy troops through the city
and uncover what other traitors were embedded on the
planet. When finished he hoped he would be elevated
to Moff and given an entire sector to govern.
was not a patient girl. She had been working out an
escape for Marcus since he had been taken away from
her. Inside the Nerf Herder, Zara attempted to use
her slicing skills to find out about the garrison
base where her love was being held. When she finally
had succeeded, she began to see all the holes in her
plans. If she successfully pulled off saving Marcus,
then they both would be fugitives of the Empire.
They would become bounties, hunted with the promise
of reward for those who brought them in alive... or
dead. While Farrah attacked Claudius, Zara screamed
and cried in the comfort of their ship until she had
a plan. It was time to go see the man in charge of
these Imperials. As much as she didn't want to press
Sierra, she *had* to. The need to have Marcus by her
side mattered more than anything else.
And so, that's
what leads us to now. Zara, anxiously piloting the
Nerf Herder while the Duchess of Delaya drooled over
herself in the copilot's seat. She was surprised
that Sierra had been so happy to tag along.... Until
she started rambling about purple unicorns. Zara
worried her sister-in-law was in no position for
this. After they had landed, both women were quickly
received by a group of Stormtroopers. Sierra
sputtered out. "Take us to see the Governor." The
Duchess said. Sierra was tired, stressed, and messed
up in the head. She wanted to free Marcus so she
could return to the medcenter and protect her
The door to
the Governor's office opened, revealing a dark room
accented with a massive window that gave him a view
of the garrison below and the city in the distance.
Even the Rodney Castle could be seen in the distant
mountain range. The message was clear ... *he* was
watching. His back was to them as they entered, and
he did not greet them with the formality they were
used to from the local population. "Ah. Commander
Rodney," he said, with a slightly annoyed tone of
voice. He was careful to use her Imperial rank to
always remind her that he outranked her, and her
husband was not currently able to check him. "I was
displeased to learn of yet another attempt on the
life of your husband," he said, referring to Marcus'
assault on the sea islands. "Fortunately we have the
traitor, Marcus Rodney, in custody. He will soon be
publicly tried, and when found guilty quickly
dispatched as to not prolong your family's
suffering," he said, crudely, all the while watching
the TIE strikers take off to begin their patrols
over the city. He never bothered to turn to
acknowledge them, nor did he even bother to verbally
acknowledge Zara's presence. He knew exactly who she
was ... the wife of a traitor.
Sierra had yet
to visit the garrison. In fact, it was the last
place she wanted to see. She understood she didn't
have home field advantage...nor did she have the
assistance of her Grand Moff husband. Her eyes
landed on the window. She felt a sudden rush of
relief that they weren't staying in the Rodney
Castle anymore. "Governor..." Sierra didn't sound
cheerful either. They were meeting to discuss the
release of a prisoner. She made a mental note to
herself to learn Claudius better ways to deal with
people in higher positions... She was still worried
sick about him. Beside Sierra, Zara let out a
whimper. The man was good at evoking emotions. Even
Sierra felt raw: angry, tired, upset.
is exactly why I'm here. He is not behind this.
There was another attack on my husband's life just
earlier today." She announced, "A young girl came
into our suite and attempted to suffocate him while
I slept. I ran after her but the Alderaan guard
stopped me." As Sierra told the story, she produced
what looked to be a sealed cup that one might pee
in. She thrust it towards him. Inside the cup, there
were dark hairs. After the drugs had mostly worn
off, the hairs tangled up in her fingers reminded
her that she *wasn't* crazy. "This is all I have of
her. Perhaps you can identify her by her DNA? What
happened between Marcus and Claudius was a mistake.
It was siblings feuding. Claudius hit his head by
accident." Her free arm wrapped around Zara's
shoulders. She squeezed the girl. It was going to be
okay. "I question why you decided it was all Marcus
so quickly and failed to continue protecting the
Grand Moff. I saw no Stormtroopers inside of the
medcenter proceeding his arrest."
attack?" Governor Arundel said, speaking as if he
was in disbelief. His body slowly turned until he
was facing both of the pregnant women whose combined
estrogen levels were enough to destroy the entire
planet. "How rude of me. Would either of you care to
sit?" he asked, as his right hand extended from him
in a flourish at the two uncomfortable metal seats
in front of his desk. He motioned for a ubiquitous
Lieutenant to step forward and take the DNA sample
for testing before resuming the conversation. "It is
simple, my dear. Marcus Rodney has the most to gain
from Claudius' death. He was also directly
responsible for his current state of
incapacitation," he declared, wrapping up everything
in a bow. "Your closeness to the situation has
clouded your vision," he declared, before slamming
his palm down on the desk for emphasis. "He is part
of the Rebel Alliance and a traitor," he declared,
glaring directly at Zara as he spoke. "...like his
niece," he added, disgustingly, with a sneer and a
roll of his eyes.
that the attack would be enough to free Marcus but
... she was wrong. She opted not to sit, but watched
carefully as the *very* pregnant Zara sat in one of
the metal chairs. It creaked beneath her like it was
going to give out. "No thank you." She preferred to
linger as it made her feel more in control of the
situation. The DNA sample had been taken away.
Sierra had made sure not to share all of the girl's
hair with the Governor. He had not proven himself,
so she needed to continue heading her own
investigation. Sierra didn't begin to feel *really*
emotional over the situation until Papius brought up
Jelena. It stung to hear the terrible man talking
about her. Sierra played her part. "Jelena got what
she deserved for being a traitor..." She let the
spite show in her voice, though it was for him and
not her best friend.
objected suddenly. "It isn't like that!" She cried.
"Marcus has nothing to do with the Rebellion! H-He
has been spending all of his time making us
comfortable in the north. All he wanted was to raise
tauntaun and feel like he wasn't a second rate
citizen." She scooted closer to Papius' desk. Her
small, shaking hands grasped the Governor's.
"Please, please, *please* give him back to me! He
didn't do it! It's all my fault! Marcus was mad
because Claudius is always getting praised and we're
the one who get shit on. I told him we should go see
his brother. It's directly *my* fault. Arrest me!"
Arundel examined Zara carefully, as he listened to
her pathetic pleading. "Yes. One wonders how a
criminal mastermind like Marcus Rodney could carry
out his nefarious plots without his wife knowing,"
he said, before his eyes looked towards the
Stormtroopers who were guarding his office. "The
woman wants to be arrested. And since her ladyship
is used to her requests being granted ... arrest
her!" he said, as he watched the two Stormtroopers
move towards the *very* pregnant woman in the seat.
He was making his mark on Delaya very quickly at the
expense of Marcus and Zara Rodney.
Oh no. Sierra
heard his words and realized the meaning behind
them. She quickly cut off the Stormtroopers,
standing directly behind Zara's seat. "Governor,
arresting a pregnant woman? She is not behind this.
She was kidnapped at the time of the bomb at
Jelena's funeral. Marcus and Zara have tried to stay
away from matters having to do with the Duchy. He
may have the most to gain, but neither of them
*want* that gain. Let her go." This situation was
becoming progressively worse and worse. By resisting
Zara's arrest, she could find herself in a cell of
her own. She could *not* afford to be cut off from
her husband right now. In front of her, Zara
continued to sob all over Papius' desk. Sierra could
hear her repeating 'arrest me' through her sobs.
Arundel inhaled sharply through his nose, as he
continued to sneer at the behavior of Zara Rodney.
"Very well, Commander. I place her in *your*
custody," he declared, before waving the
Stormtroopers off. "This woman is *your*
responsibility as a member of the ISB. Should she be
identified as a Rebel or a traitor then it will fall
on you, and your husband won't be able to protect
you. He won't be able to claim ignorance as he did
with his daughter," he said, before moving back
towards his window and turning his back on them. In
the assembly area below AT-ST walkers were preparing
for their first patrol of Leiliani. It was a new day
on Delaya. An Imperial day.
the Governor, Sierra aged. She wondered if she
should have allowed them to arrest Zara for self
preservation. Placing Zara in her custody sounded
worse than having them arrest her on the spot.
Sierra did not know her sister-in-law well. While
she didn't expect her to be a Rebel, she did suspect
that there was more going on in her life than she
was telling. The girl had gotten her hands on some
hard-to-reach files. Papius had punched the air from
her gut. Her face was pale. "That's gracious,
Governor." She said, grasping Zara's hand. "We need
to leave now." Her heart strings were pulling her
back to the medcenter. She trusted no one other than
herself to keep watch over the man she loved.
Helping Zara up, the two women started towards the
doorway. Zara was shaking in a way that made Sierra
pity her. One brother was jailed. The other
"I won't leave
without Marcus!" Zara pushed Sierra away suddenly.
In a speed that no one had seen from the thief in
sometime, she crossed the length of the room. Sierra
cursed under her breath. She saw what was coming
long before it did. Zara Rodney, pregnant with
twins, punched the Governor square in his nose. It
was the kind of rash, physical retaliation that
Sierra might have given to Arden. "Zara!" She called
out. It was too late.
Arundel was not expecting Zara Rodney to be foolish
enough to touch him, but the sucker punch
nevertheless connected with his nose ... breaking
it. The Stormtroopers immediately raised their E-11
blaster rifles and unloaded on a double barrage of
stun coils at the woman at near point blank range.
The Governor brought his hand up to shield his nose,
which was bleeding profusely. "She was in your
charge when she struck me, Commander," he said to
her, menacingly, before pulling away his hand to
reveal his crimson mask. He took his hand and wiped
it upon her cream colored tunic, leaking a bloody
handprint on her otherwise pristine uniform. "You
will pay for this," he said, before instructing the
Stormtroopers to drag off Zara's body
unceremoniously, paying no mind to her pregnancy.
It seemed that
Zara was proud of herself. She growled at Governor
Arundel throughout the whole time she was captured,
arrested, and taken away with no regard to her, or
her children's, health. If she couldn't break Marcus
out, then she would be content to share the same
space as him.
struck Sierra *hard*. She immediately feared that he
would prosecute her for what Zara had done.
Beginning to feel like a caged creature, she knew
she needed to get out of here as soon as possible.
Her heart was thumping quickly in her chest. Anxiety
was settled into her. She bowed to the Governor. "I
apologize for her actions. T-There are other places
for me to be right now. I must attend to my husband
once more." Bringing Zara here was a huge mistake.
If Claudius never woke, the whole Rodney family
would end up arrested.
Arundel was seated at his desk with a bacta patch
covering most of his face. It was then that his
terminal began to beep repeatedly. His attention
turned to it briefly and he acknowledged the
transmission from the lab on the lower level. The
DNA test was completed ... it was Rodney DNA. A
smile curled upon his lips, despite the fact that it
caused him a tremendous amount of pain. He leaned
back in his chair, intertwined his fingers, and
began to laugh excessively. He had been proven
right. He would rid the planet and the Empire of
this corrupt family once and for all.