Era of Rebellion - Navigation

Christopher Levy and Sarah Riggs-Shute.
One year after the Battle of Yavin (36:2:13) in the Brentaal system: Brentaal IV (Cormond: Trade Hall) and Darkened Oblivion, and in the Essesia system: Retributor.
Liliya Benedt, Lord Criosk (death), Lord Jaxxon Diode (death), Lieutenant Meham'ohorovi'cloca, High Inquisitor Serine Thanor, Flight Captain Randi Trainor, and Major Arden Zevrin.

Serine had been trying to put in the small earpiece the entire time Randi flew her to the surface of Brentaal. The High Inquisitor had not even known how to wear the device or how it worked until she read an instruction manual in the database for its use. Apparently there was a tiny camera embedded in the device that would loop over her ear, and the earpiece itself could receive transmissions. "Randi, have you ever had to wear one of these before?" Serine asked her pilot, obviously frustrated that she was struggling to install it properly in addition to being testy that her actions were going to be recorded. The Inquisitor certainly did not believe much of what Arden had told her regarding why she needed to wear it. Finally, Serine managed to place the device properly and angle the small camera so it was eye level to what she herself was seeing. "This is ridiculous!" She exclaimed to Randi candidly, feeling comfortable discussing most matters with her eccentric pilot.

"Are we gonna be on the HoloNet, Serry. Like Doctor Shuura?" Randi asked, as she spent more time looking at the camera than she did where she was flying. "Is it on?" she asked, smiling broadly, like an imbecile, as she kept staring directly into the recorder. "Hi. Everyone. I'm Randi. The bestest pilot in the Imperial Navy," she informed everyone, incorrectly believing she was being livestreamed throughout the Galactic Empire. Suddenly the collision sensor activated, and she snapped forward into the seat, sending the ship into a sudden dive to avoid collision with a Lancer-class frigate. "Eep. Sorry, Serry. Just wanted to give the folks back home a view of what it's like to be in the cockpit and see the excitement and wonder of piloting for the Empire!" she cheered, as she began sending them on a course down towards Cormond, the capital city of Brentaal. "Uh. Serry. Just out of curiosity. Has Sanu been acting ok lately?" she asked, nervously fidgeting with the controls as they approached the spaceport. "I think ... I think Kia may have let her eat some cookies ... not that I'm blaming her ... and please don't tell her I mentioned anything ... but yeah ... Sanu is alright, right?" she asked, swallowing nervously, and causing the black collar of her uniform to constrict around her neck as if the Inquisitor were already choking her. An instant later, the Darkened Oblivion had touched down in Cormond's spaceport. "Ta da!" she said, as she rose from her seat, and bowed to the camera, which caused her pigtails to plummet and her hat to fall from her head.

Arden sat in a loveseat next to Liliya, an arm wrapped around her shoulders, with a bucket of snacks courtesy of Bethany Sheppard's mother between them, as they watched Serine's live feed on a gigantic monitor in front of them. "Now how is it that that imbecile pilot still survives?" she asked, Liliya, before eating some of the food. "Inquisitor, will you please inform your pilot that this is a very serious mission and that she is in fact not appearing on Imperial Holovision," she said over the comlink, beamed directly into Serine's ear, with utter annoyance. "I don't know why the Inquisitor has attempted to poach such a capable staff and yet chooses to maintain the Governor's former pilot. She got her entire class at Venessor killed, you know," she said, before offering Liliya a piece of Mrs. Sheppard's famous homemade fudge. "Oh well. Perhaps the Force has guided her to some insight into the dim-witted Captain," she snickered, as she leaned back, waiting to see what else would unfold. "Can you see back there, Lieutenant? I mean how good are those red eyes are yours anyway?" she asked, leaning over her shoulder to look at the Chiss.

Liliya Benedt found herself trapped in Arden's embrace, an arm around her petite shoulders prevented her from all movement except to sit with the woman and stare at the monitor before them with dread. This was exactly what she had wanted to prevent, but her nightmare of witnessing the slaughter of countless innocent lives was about to begin. "Your Majesty, there is still time to stop this..." she said meekly, already knowing that her pleas would go unanswered, much like they had been with Claudius. She came to the realization a long ago that she, a human replica droid, was the only one with *humanity* amongst the individuals she served.

Lieutenant Meham'ohorovi'cloca stood stone faced behind the loveseat, noting every movement the Inquisitor made, as well as Captain Trainor's unorthodox flight style. "My vision is perfect, Major," she reported, professionally, in her exotic, alien voice. The physical reprimand she experienced at the hand of the ISB earlier did little to weaken her resolve to perform her duty the best of the abilities. On the contrary, she would use the experience to process how to more efficiently serve the Major in a manner more construsive to her liking. Saying nothing more, she returned to her datapad, computing statistics, as she watched the engagement unfold.

The erratic and sudden sharp movements of the ship caused Serine to lurch forward and slam into the control panel next to Randi, nearly jarring the small device from her ear. The images coming through to the 'viewing party' would certainly be jostled and off center until the Inquisitor could reposition the small camera. "Randi! Pay attention!" She yelled at her floozy pilot before she stumbled back to her seat. "What are you blubbering about now? Focus on flying," she said in response to Randi's confusing diatribe about cookies and Sanu, the Inquisitor having no clue that Randi used her room as her own private snacking vender. "The beast is fine." Serine said in a reassuring manner, not quite sure why Randi had a sudden interest in the nexu, but it did concern her and she planned on investigating afterwards.

The unexpected voice of Arden ringing in her ear completely startled the Inquisitor as she had not anticipated an open channel of communication. "Major!?" This suddenly complicated things a great deal, now that Serine understood that Arden was not only watching the live feed, she could speak to her in turn. The Inquisitor considered ripping out that earpiece and crushing it immediately, not appreciating the feeling that she was somehow being reduced to a plaything for the Major to toy with. Arden would be rewarded with a sudden infuriated outburst by Serine who took her anger out on the only person physically present, her pilot. "You idiot! This is *not* going to be broadcasted, and you nearly crashed into oncoming traffic!" She screamed at her hapless pilot out of fury for her own predicament, not Randi's antics. The Inquisitor managed to contain herself just long enough to storm from the ship, preventing any possible harm befalling her pilot. When she was well out of earshot from Randi, she yelled furiously into open air. "Zevrin!! Does this amuse you?!"

"If you want an honest answer ... and I'm sure you do ... then, *yes*," Arden replied over the comm with a mouthful of snacks slightly obstructing her voice. "According to blue lady you're already behind schedule," she continued, in a lie, simply to motivate and irritate the Inquisitor. "She's very punctual, you know. Always the first to a meeting. Each time I show up earlier and earlier, but there she still is. Beats me *every* time. Do you have any idea how annoying that is?" she asked, completely sidetracking the mission, as she continued devour the bucket of snacks she had brought for the occasion. "These Lords are liable to die of old age," she said to Liliya and Meham'ohorovi'cloca once the comm was muted. Serine really was taking her sweet time here, she thought to herself, before having a sip of her glass of wine.

The constant crackling sound of food being consumed in her ear was driving her crazy, she would surely strangle that woman if Arden was before her at this moment. Not only was the Major's antics enraging her, she could not concentrate at any task with such a cacophony of sounds beaming into her inner ear. The Inquisitor was absolutely seething with anger and her breathing became slightly erratic as hands starting clutching open and closed by her sides. Now she knew Lieutenant Meham'ohorovi'cloca was also watching, and likely Liliya as well. Was the whole ship watching this?! Arden could so easily press her buttons and Serine was close to her limit. "I do not have to stand for this! I can complete this mission with ease without your excessive hounding!" She screamed once again before she started to move to rip out the earpiece.

"She's menstruating. Has to be it," Arden said to Liliya, before washing her mouth out with some wine so that she could speak more clearly. "Very well, Inquisitor. I shall keep my comments to a minimum. " she broadcast over the comm before silencing it once again. "You know, and I can't believe I'm saying this, I think I actually miss Governor Rodney. At least he had a sense of humor when drunk," she said, before a wicked idea came upon her face that caused it to brighten the room. "Liliya, an idea has come over me," she said, as she rose triumphantly from the loveseat with a finger held high. "Liliya, record the following," she said, before clearing her throat. "Message to all commands. To any officer, non-commissioned officer, or enlisted personnel currently assigned to the Ringali Shell. A reward of one million credits is offered to any individual who can make Inquisitor Thanor laugh," she said, triumphantly, as she smiled down to the young Alderaanian aid. "Ah. Due to their close personal connection, Flight Captain Randi Trainor is excluded," she said, as she sat back down next to Liliya. "If that does not get the Inquisitor's attention I don't know what will," she said to the others in the room, before she proceeded to have more wine.

Liliya shifted uncomfortably in her seat intimately close to the Major. Not only was it distressing to be so near to that woman, she was very concerned with the prospects of what Arden was suggesting. "But ... but Your Majesty, she will kill them," the aide said sorrowfully as large eyes pleaded her case to her superior. Hopefully the notion was just a threat ... and the Inquisitor would heed to the order so that no one would suffer those consequences. Liliya could tell that Serine was getting emotionally unbalanced and increasingly unstable. Surely the more Arden goaded and provoked her, the more violent and cruel she would be to the unsuspecting victims. "This is too cruel ... I ... I can't watch this ... please, please let me leave," her soft pained voice full of misery eased out a gentle plea as eyes drifted down to her lap. Perhaps she could refuse to look at the monitor, but she would no doubt still hear the pitiful screams and wails of those afflicted.

"Oh I don't need your blubbering ruining the bloodshed," Arden said, as she reached into the bucket and produced a brownie. Roughly she smashed it into Liliya's lips before force feeding it into her mouth, getting the chocolate all over her face. "Eat something, damn you! For the first time in your life, eat something!" she yelled, at the top of her throat, as she shoved the brownie all the way in. "Do you have any idea how hard it is for the rest of us to look at you in your size negative two dress effortlessly while the rest of us have to work out endlessly just to squeeze into a size eight?" she screamed, flying off the handle at the young aide. "You will watch, and more importantly, you *will* eat," she said, before clapping her hands twice to summon a guard. "Executor her should she look away or cease eating," she ordered, before leaning back to watch the battle begin.

Serine was about to crush the small device into oblivion but she heard Arden's voice continue to chirp from the earpiece in her hand and what she heard was horrifying. Who knew how many countless officers would attempt to prank her, or surprise her, and then they would die, placing Serine in a terribly awkward position. If that order went out, she would be at constant edge assuming someone was about to try something asinine, and she would have difficulty focusing, even if no one was foolish enough to attempt it. There would always be at least that *one guy* that would pursue the challenge, and that was not something the High Inquisitor wanted to waste her time and effort on. This move by Arden was so incredibly petty but it was very effective. After Serine took a moment to contemplate the matter, she yielded to the Major's demand and placed the earpiece back in before adjusting the camera once again. She was too infuriated to speak, or to acknowledge Arden so she pulled out the datapad listing the names and read them silently. She looked forward to dismembering them.

Lord Criosk stood impatiently in a conference room atop the Trade Hall in Cormond, the capital city of Brentaal IV. "Where is he?" he impatiently asked the other noble in the room. He was dressed in ornate robes of state, and was one of the wealthiest and therefore most corrupt members of the Brentaal Houses. However, as he advanced in years, he came to value time more than money and right now his time was being wasted. "Another five minutes and I'm leaving. You wanna stay? You can stay, but I wait for no one," he said, as he folded his arms in front of his chest with frustration.

"Calm yourself, Criosk," Lord Diode said, as he remained seated at the conference table, waiting with infinitely more patience than his fellow Lord and sometimes rival. "The amount of credits we have been promised are more than enough to inspire me to wait as long as it takes for him to get there," he said, as he contently leaned back in his chair. His eyes moved to has fashionable, bejeweled wrist chronometer, as he maintained his patience. The two Lords sat inside an ornate room with ample members of the Ringali Shell Security Force posted outside to protect them. They felt *invulnerable*.

The bored nobility would not be sitting idle for much longer. There was a tremendous commotion brewing outside of the conference room. The muffled sounds of blasters firing and agonizing screams could be heard through the solid and sturdy doors that led out into the foyer where nearly a dozen guards had been on duty. The horrid howls and shrieking died down causing an eerie silence to fall upon the area. An unsettling moment passed before there was a monstrous explosion of energy as three mutilated bloody carcasses erupted through the massive doors. The once majestic and highly ornate doors splintered into innumerable pieces of ruined shards that cascaded upon the occupants like a shower of destruction. The mangled bodies that were once security officers collided with the conference table with such power that what was left of their maimed corpses erupted into a slew of eviscerated gore. Blood splattered out like a bomb detonation, coating tables, chairs, the walls and even sprayed up upon the ceiling in a gruesome display. Soon after the chaotic and appalling ordeal, High Inquisitor Serine Thanor stepped through the ruined doorway like a visage out of the depths of hell. The many patches of blood that dripped from her armorweave were further highlighted by the crimson glow of the tails of her lightwhip. The scene she stepped from was a truly horrid sight, behind her lay countless mounds of what used to be human beings but their appendages were so disfigured that they were indistinguishable. There was an infernal of sinister vile gleaming in her silver eyes as she looked upon them as if they were insignificant worms. She moved towards them while flicking a few coils of her whip in preparation. A sick longing swirled in her gaze ... their death had come for them.

The screams preceded her arrival. Lord Diode began to panic as he heard the blaster fire, the screaming, the snapping of bones like twigs. "It must be the Rebels. We're under attack!" he screamed, as he began to scurry from the table like a small, woodland creature. But, when the door opened and revealed the incredible awe-inspiring presence of the Inquisitor. *Fear*. Fear was dripping from every corner of the room, as if a wet animal had shaken it off and splattered it everywhere. "In-In-In-In-Inquisitor," the Lord said, as he dropped to his knees in front of her. He lowered himself all the way forward until he was all the way forward, with his forehead upon the ground. "Mercy! Mercy!" he begged, like the sniveling coward that he was.

"Run you fool," Lord Criosk shouted to Diode, as he saw the Inquisitor arrive. His hand reached to his side where he kept a DL-18 blaster pistol holster. The weapon was raised in an instant, firing off multiple deadly bolts of crimson energy at the fiery young Inquisitor. It was strange that the Lord thought he could do what the local security forces could not, but he was determined not to die on his knees like the pathetic Diode.

Serine slowly looked down at the sniveling pitiful man before her who pathetically begged for his life and she delighted in it. There was a darkness churning in the Inquisitor's eyes, an intoxicating rush of the Darkside was coursing through her entire system, every cell was awash and inundated with its vile power. The Inquisitor had been under such lock and key, she was unable to experience this rush for a long, long time ... she craved it, she *needed* it. Lord Diode's wretched display would not save him, but merely prolong his suffering. For now, her attention was directed at the other occupant in the room who so foolishly dared to attack her. He would have been better served if he laid down to die before her. Now she would make his existence unbearable. The red energy bolts that he fired upon her were effortlessly deflected by coils of the whip that seemed to move and have a life of their own. They slithered and twisted about the Inquisitor as if they were alive. In a flash of movement, all six tails of her weapon wrapped around the arm that held the DL-18 blaster and lingered as his skin and then muscle began to burn and slough off the bone in a morbid fashion. One solid tug from the whip severed the remnants of the arm leaving what remained a gnarled stub that continuously gushed blood from veins that had not been cauterized.

Lord Criosk let out a ghastly groan of pain as the coils of the whip tore the flesh from his arm, filling the room with an awful smell of burning flesh. "Ahh!" he screamed as the Inquisitor pulled at her whip, severing what was left of his arm. He dropped to his knees, still alive, despite the loss of a limb. He entered a state of shock, his mouth hung open, and his eyes were as wide as small moons.

The entirety of the affair was broadcast to the crew of the Retributor who reacted in a mix of screams, cheers, and grotesque groans of vomiting. "Slow. She toys with her victims the way you play with your food, Liliya," Arden mused, remembering how she would spend fifteen minutes attempting to fork a single pea. "Inquisitor, you must dispatch them more swiftly," she said over the comm, chastising her for the ineffectual way in which she was going about the executions. "How many seconds can she cut off *that*?" she said, moving her hand over the comlink to prevent the Inquisitor from hearing, while she glared at the Chiss behind her. Cruelly, she then reached down and picked up a can of whipped cream. She pressed the tip of the can to Liliya's mouth and began to force feed her the cream. "You need some color," she said to Liliya, as she leaned back to watch the final killing. "Do not hesitate, Inquisitor. Kill them *both*," she demanded, as she yelled over the comm to the Inquisitor.

The High Inquisitor was far too dominated by the command and power of the Darkside to pay any mind to Arden's request, but the sound of her shrill yelling into Serine's ear did promote her to further violence. Brilliant coils wrapped around the other arm of Lord Criosk, corroding his appendage in another disgusting scene before it too was ripped free from his torso, leaving him a nauseating husk of his former self. Satisfied that he would quickly succumb to death by massive blood loss, her attention then fell to the man who submissively postured himself before her. A right hand outstretched to him and soon the man found himself suspended in air against his will and held there by an unseen energy. Four separate coils of her glowing lightwhip enveloped his arms and legs as he hung there helplessly while he was burned slowly alive. His clothing started to catch on fire and it spread to the locations of his body that were not immediately being seared and ruined by the lightwhip. This horrific scene would continue for long excruciating minutes until he finally succumbed to death. His smoldering carcass was tossed to the side as an afterthought as she stood in the midst of the havoc and gory destruction she had caused. Serine tilted her head back while eyes slowly closed as she reveled in the exhilarating power that surged through her.

"Excellent Inquisitor. Those two pathetic noblemen will never bother the Empire again. I'd invite you to dinner, but Liliya and I already had dessert," Arden said, before she deactivated the comlink and terminated the live stream. "Leave us," she said to Meham'ohorovi'cloca, before turning her full attention to Liliya. She reached up with her gloved hand to hold the back of her head in place by the short locks of her pixie. Her mouth moved forward as she placed a kiss upon her lips, licking off the fragments of chocolate that removed around her mouth. When the kiss broke both of their lips were smudged with chocolate. "You may take one hour's rest," she said to Liliya, as she lay contently on the loveseat, spreading out and watching the footage from other cameras aboard the ship.

Liliya had been forced to endure a tremendous amount of trauma during this live feed. When Arden told the guard to execute her if she looked away or refused the food, she trembled lightly in her seat, even as the Major shoved brownies, cookies and whipped cream into her mouth. She did her best to hold back tears to the abuse and also the horrible actions of the Inquisitor. Liliya had managed to prevent herself from sobbing, but she had been overwhelmed which had caused tears to roll down her cheeks silently through this entire charade. The assistant was not concerned with the unending treats being pushed upon her, since her food processors could dispose of the materials effortlessly, and it was impossible for her mechanical body to retain the calories, no matter how many cookies she ate. What truly had disturbed her, was the cruelty and disregard for decency that the Major showed. It was even more jarring than the sickening and repulsive show the Inquisitor had performed. Beaten and subdued, she gave no resistance to Arden's advance upon her, but all the while, tears did stream down her cheeks. It was a sad acknowledgment of her fate with her new charge. Finally, it was near the end of the nightmare, but only presumably, for Arden allowed her only a single hour to regroup... "...thank you... Your Majesty..." she said with a sullen and defeated tone to her voice before she slowly removed herself from the loveseat and trudged back to her room to weep bitterly upon her bed.

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