Era of Rebellion - Navigation

Christopher Levy and Tara McLaren.
Zero years after the Battle of Yavin (35:6:11) in the Essesia system: Warspite.
Grand Moff Claudius Rodney and Lieutenant Brianna Visla.

Grand Moff Claudius Rodney sat clearly agitated at his desk as he sorted through pile after pile of datapads. "Blast," he cursed, as he slammed one angrily down on his desk. The middle-aged man clenched his hands angrily as his face reddened with anger and he stared around the room. "You there, Lieutenant..." he paused, unable to think of her name. "Where is Major Kiley?" he asked, as he looked over the latest reports from Ralltiir. The situation seemed to worsen by the hour, and his adjutant had been oddly distant lately.

The Storm commando lieutenant was at attention, wearing her helmet and the rest of her armor like a true professional. This made her the rule rather than the exception among the Stormtrooper Corps, but it was admirable nonetheless. His question seemed to take her aback, however. He would get a distinct impression that she was blinking behind that helmet. "My apologies, but I am not certain, sir. Do you wish me to locate her, sir?" She looked rather eager to please. No doubt she was not wanting to disappoint a Grand Moff.

Claudius brought two hands up over his face and slowly ran them down, stretching his skin in frustration as he considered the situation carefully. "No. I am confident she will turn up. Perhaps someone should look under a chair," he said angrily, making a cruel comment regarding the woman's diminutive height. Hearing the female voice beneath the helmet he tilted his head slightly. "Are you new?" he asked, as he rose from his seat and walked over to the viewport and stared out angrily at the stars, gritting his teeth in frustration.

"Yes, sir. Lieutenant Brianna Visla, sir." The storm commando was significantly tall at 1.8 meters height. She held her DC-15A blaster rifle at attention, and looked comfortable enough to bring the large weapon into firing position in an instant. With the helmet covering her face, it was hard to tell if talking to a Grand Moff was intimidating her.

Claudius lowered his head dejectedly as he stared out the viewport, as if he could feel the ebb and flow of the galactic turmoil of his Oversector flow through space. "Off with the helmet, then," he said, rather bluntly as he prepared to view the new officer. If someone was tasked to protect him and his family he would like to know whom they were.

"Yes, sir. Of course, sir." She shifted her blaster rifle to one arm and removed the helmet. The storm commando looked young ... very young, even. She must have gone straight from the Imperial Academy on Carida into Storm Commando training, which meant she must have tested out very well. The trooper had an elegant beauty to her face that indicated some Hapan heritage ... a quick check of her profile would confirm that. Her hair was red and shoulder length, her eyes green.

Claudius first caught her visage in the reflection of the viewport, still having not turned towards her. "You look very much like my wife..." he said quietly, as his head turned to face her finally. "You seem awfully ... young," he said, as he would make a note to check her dossier later.

"My apologies, sir. I have only recently been commissioned, but I hope to serve for many years if it pleases the Emperor." She would clip her helmet to her utility belt so both hands were free and she turned directly towards him for inspection. The storm commando seemed lithe and toned beneath her armor, moving with the strength of someone who had spent the last few years in the high gravity of Carida.

"What have you been told of the situation here in the Ringali Shell, Lieutenant?" Claudius asked, as he moved swiftly towards his desk and towards the couch in the opposite side of his office. Looking quite fatigued, the middle-aged man sat down on the sofa and put his feat up on the table. His brown eyes stared at her carefully, wondering why the Empire was sending children to fight a war.

"The Empire has not seen fit to inform me of the situation, sir. Need to know basis. I serve at the discretion of my Commanding Officer." She definitely seemed like a model soldier, even if she was clearly not ready to be speaking personally with a Grand Moff. As she stood there waiting for his next question, she would blink as she realized he might not be satisfied with that answer. "Speculation on my part would be irresponsible, sir, but I will engage in it if you wish."

"You may think you are safe in the warm embrace of the galactic core, my dear," Claudius began as he brought his right hand up to his ear and scratched at it in frustration. "But let me tell you that the Rebellion has been felt throughout the Oversector and we have suffered at times devastating losses..." he continued, letting out a dejected sigh as he conceded these points to her. "I hope you are prepared for just what we have in store for you here..." he said, alluding to the death of the previous squad, but without directly referencing it.

"My life belongs to the Emperor, sir. I will gladly sacrifice myself in the protection of your household, or in action versus the Rebellion or other terrorists." It was not clear whether the storm commando was idealistic, naive or just plain stupid. Maybe she had a martyr complex. Either way she seemed very loyal.

"Indeed, Lieutenant, but if you are dead how can you ensure that your mission is successful?" Claudius posed to her, as he folded his arms deliberately in front of his chest. "Words straight from the Academy, but do you understand what they mean? There are tens of thousands of dead Imperials who gave their lives to the Emperor. That's 10,000 people we have to recruit and train to replace them. Even you, my dear, are a replacement," he explained to her, wishing he could have a drink at this particular moment in time, but he had promised his wife he would refrain. "The Empire would be much better served if you liverd and succeeded instead of dying in a heroic attempt to succeed," he scolded her, as he pulled his arms from his chest to point at her.

Her skin turned slightly red as she was reprimanded. Fearless as Stormtroopers were on the battlefield, nothing in their training prepared them for conversations with Grand Moffs. "Yes sir. I apologize, sir. In life or death, I will serve the Empire. I am happy to serve in whatever capacity I am needed."

"Can a corpse serve, Lieutenant?" Claudius asked, as he rose from his seat and walked over towards the alarmingly tall woman. He reached out and grasped at her rifle, holding it firmly in both of his hands. He lifted it up and down slightly, as if it were a weight, and regarded the feel of it. "Have you ever used this in combat?" he asked, his eyes on the weapon, rather than on her.

Her rifle weighed 4.5 kilograms and could fire up to 500 rounds before needing a power pack replacement at its lowest power setting. At its highest, it could hit a target from ten klicks away or blow a hole in a solid duracrete wall. "My Omega Exercise before graduation from the Academy, sir. I commanded a platoon assigned to crushing a small insurgency movement. Scored kills with it in close combat, intermediate range and sniping." She paused, deciding she needed to correct herself. "I apologize, sir, if it  sounds like I am taking credit. All glory to the Empire."

Grand Moff Rodney tossed the rifle in the air slightly for her to catch, as he backed away from her. "Hang on to that, Lieutenant," he said, as he began walking towards his desk where he had too long taken himself away from his duties. "I have a feeling you're going to need it," he said as he sat back down at his desk and went back to unenviable task of looking over the datapads.

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