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Story The New Sith Order: A Star Wars Fanfiction

Cyborg_Leopard

Chimeric Spirit
This is a story set in the Star Wars universe that I wrote based off of some RP characters I played awhile back. The RP was set in a post-endor universe that didn’t acknowledge the new (Disney) trilogy of movies, though the story will actually begin during the clone wars. I would consider myself a star wars fan and I have read some expanded universe content and explored the lore through Wookieepedia and youtube lore videos but I am by no means an expert in star wars, so this story will be consistent with the mainline movies and TV shows; if only because it focuses on original characters that aren’t really related to the main timeline, with only the occasional cameo of and interaction with canon characters.

I somewhat doubt this story will be a masterpiece of any sort, I still want to write it to get my feet wet with writing fiction in preparation for putting out my original novels or comics, so fair critique is welcome. Though I have a vague summary of what the plot will revolve around and how its going to progress and conclude, the finer points of the story are hardly planned out.


Prolouge:

The year is 22 BBY. The clone wars are heating up. In the void of space, a mixed fleet of dagger-shaped Acclimators and Venators lumber slowly through the void on sub-light power, fighters, shuttles and a handful of Pelta frigates flying patrols, rotating crew and stocking the ships. A group of painter droids make their way across the hull of an Acclimator, applying scarlet paint to finish the striking red decorations. At the center of the fleet was a massive ship; one of only a handful of Praetor class battlecruisers sold into the republic. It too was in the process of receiving its scarlet marks.

The door to the bridge of the battlecruiser opened with a mechanical hiss. The clones by the door and the dozens of officers on the bridge stood at attention. In the door stood a Jedi mastar; Mon Calamari, with an unusual complexion of a bright greenish blue. He wore glistening segmented shoulder guards of silver over his jedi robes, and a lightsaber, double the length of most others was clipped onto his belt, visible for all the clones on the bridge to see.

“At ease.” The Jedi Ordered

“General Kunis.” Commander Brik began squarely. Brik looked like any other clone, save for his cybernetic eye which he had acquired after taking a blaster bolt to the face during the battle of Genosis, and his armor which he had recently painted brown and blue. “Transmission straight from Coruscant.” He gestured to a flashing button on the holographic projection table. Kunis stepped in and pressed it. The connection was forged.

“Master Windu.” He said with a small bow, upon seeing the hologram of the Jedi master.

Windu spared the formalities. “We’ve received reports from our spies that the Quarren are moving large amounts of supplies in and out of the Hantooine system, about 10 parsecs galactic west of Mon Cala. We suspect this is a location which they are using to are producing Providence class cruisers.” A hologram of the cruiser appeared next to Windu, spinning on the spot, showing the bulbous beak-like prow and the long diagonal spire that seemed to pierce through the rear of the ship. “These ships are deadly carrier cruiser hybrids, more than a match for our new classes of ship. That’s where you come in, we’ve given you that fleet, which should be able to handle whatever ships are stationed there; completed or not, and destroy the shipyard.”

“How many ships are there now?” Kunis Inquired.

“Our last recon run was about two weeks ago, they reported about half a dozen frigates and three Providence cruisers still under the early phases of construction.” Mace said impatiently, as he had other duties to attend to. “As soon as your preparations are complete you are to move on the system and destroy the shipyard with overwhelming force.”

“Understood.” Kunis said, as the hologram transmission closed.

“General Kunis, all supplies accounted for. Ready to jump to light speed at your command.” A clone officer remarked from his station. Kunis gave a nod and the officer turned back to the station and spoke through his headset. “Alright, navi-computer set, prepare to jump to light speed.”

The hyperdrive of the battlecruiser began to hum up to power as the ships on the periphery of the fleet vanished over the horizon into hyperspace.

“Brik. Make sure squads of fighters are ready to deploy when we exit hyperspace.”

Brik nodded, picking up a datapad and heading off to a trio of officers standing near the window of the bridge, as the points of light stretched into lines and they fell into a blue maelstrom of energy; hyperspace.
 

Cyborg_Leopard

Chimeric Spirit
Chapter 1:
Palpetene sat in his office, reading over the latest reports of the ongoing war. Anakin had been given a padawan by the Jedi Council. He heard the intercom buzz, and had a sudden recollection of an appointment that had been made with the senator of a world from the outer rim. He pressed a button on the console on his desk with a raspy “come in” the door opened with a hiss.

A woman stepped in. Tall, taller than him by about half the height of her head. She wore a senatorial gown, relatively minimalistic by the standards of what some senators wore. Both her hair, long and straight and her gown were as black as the void of space, almost seeming to blend into one another. In a few places, it was; her hair decoratively clipped into the dress. Following her were four protocol droids clad in ivory which fanned out into the room.

Each one looked fairly standard, save for the the third ‘eye’ set in the middle of the forehead of each droid. One of the four droids carried a tray, and on it, an hourglass shaped bottle of Alderannian nectar. She gave him a knowing glance. Palpetene felt it. The woman’s presence in the force.

“Good evening, Senator Regenta.” He said with a slight, knowing smirk in return. He had felt glances of her in the halls of the senate before. She cloaked her presence in the force well. Not perfectly, but well for one who was presumably untrained and so young, no older than skywalker.

The protocol droid carrying the nectar stepped forward to the desk, carefully pouring two glasses of nectar, one for herself and one for the chancellor.

“Good Evening, Chancellor.” She said, taking a sip of the nectar and swirling it about in her glass. “Or would you prefer I call you by your true name?”

“Really?” He said, taking a sip, raising an eyebrow. Perceptive, this woman was. How much did she truly know? What were her intentions here? The force was strong with her; was she an undercover Jedi? Had his plans been revealed. He felt in the force for his saber concealed within his robes.

“I wouldn’t recommend doing that.” She responded. “If you lash out and kill me, or any of my droids, they will broadcast their recording to the galactic holonet, and your plot to destroy the jedi and the republic will be revealed.”

“As would your affiliation with the dark side…” the sith lord said, fury boiling just underneath, but also a hint of pride. Regenta would make for a fine assassin, a replacement to the likes of the disappointments he had produced in the past. Maul. Dooku. Grievous. Ventress. All of them failures. She was cold, calculating, able to think long term and plan the downfall of her foes. If there was some means by which he might convince her, she may make a fine pawn in his design.

“I know.” She responded calmly. “But I have brought these droids only as… insurance, and yet I carry no weapon as you have noticed. Because, I do not wish to fight… and I do not know that I could defeat you.” She responded, an icy bite in her voice.

“You know humility, young one. Your strength in the force runs deep and I sense your hate, your anger, and yet you do not show them to me. You would do well under my teachings.” Sidious responded.

Regenta restrained a chuckle. “And become your lapdog, in the same way that Maul or Dooku are? You would like that wouldn’t you.” She retorted, taking another sip of nectar. “Emotions are beautiful things, things which all beings have the gift of feeling, and they drive our power in the force in the way that the Jedi cannot fail to harness. I admire your vision, Sidious, but I wish to speak with you.”

She gazed out behind him, at the courascanti skyline. Streams of repulsorcraft darted by in their lanes.

“With this war… with your… approach with the skywalker child… you pray on the dogmatic ways of the Jedi. Through these thousand years of peace, their dogma and philosophy have grown disjointed and weighted with bearuacracy, much like the senate. Factions grow old just as oneself grows old and accumulates scars, wrinkles and becomes sluggish and laden with an increasingly complex and entropic existence. Who is to say this flaw of the jedi order is no more severe than your sith order and their rule of two?”

“You have no place to speak about that! You are not even a true sith!” Sidious snapped back. Every ounce of his being was filled with fury, oh how he wished he could unleash is fury, annihilate this pathetic irritant full of the most powerful force lighting he could muster.

“Look at yourself, surrounding yourself with these pretenders, but only considering them assassins. By failing to recognize them as equals you only create loose cannons, rivals and traitors.” She responded, casually taking a sip of nectar.

“The order of two stands to protect our secrecy. If it did not, the Jedi would be able uncover our plans… The only rivals it faces are beings like you.” He snarled back.

“The Jedi are corrupted, their strength in the force weakened by the dark side nexus beneath their temple. They did not uncover the clone army until it had already been deployed. Who is to say… if you did not clone a force-sensitive being, you would not have an army of sith at your command.”

“As my master and I have discovered… artificially creating force-sensitive beings is not… so easy.” He responded knowingly, his anger seemingly having faded. Senator Regenta’s ramblings were… amusing him.

“Even then… how many sith do you presume it would take to simply overrun the Jedi in their current state? Perhaps a hundred? A thousand? Even if only one in a thousand such hypothetical sith clones emerged force-sensitive, if produced in the numbers as your troopers were…”

“And how would you conceal their presence in the force before they were trained?” Sidious retorted.

She stopped, for the first time it seemed she had been effectively countered in her argument.

“There are ways.” She responded. It was true. There were ways through which one could conceal.

“So you have established yourself as a rival of mine and an enemy to both the sith and the Jedi. What do you expect to gain from this?”

“I was hoping to gain your support, as our goals fall in line with one another. It was a stretch to say the least, and one which it does not seem I have completed. And now that I have revealed myself, I suppose there’s nothing stopping you from preforming an elaborate ruse and doing me in. So I shall offer you a deal.”

“What could you possibly hope to bargain with?”

“My service. I suspect your plan to destroy the Jedi will fail. I offer you this wager. If, in one quarter century, you have destroyed the Jedi and assumed total control over the galaxy, then I will pledge my undying loyalty to you as your apprentice, for if you succeed, I will have failed.”

“I have already selected the one who will truly be my successor. Skywalker…”

“Skywalker is… an interesting figure. I have been observing him from afar. He is… unpredictable…his emotions are so… beautifully knotted and complex… Tell me. Are you certain you could keep him under your control.”

“Most Defiantly.” Sidious spat back defiantly.

“If you’re so confident that you will succeed, then what do you have to lose then?”

“What do you wish to bargain for?”

“My protection… that you would not make any attempt kill me. I thought it best to reveal myself to you, and all that I knew. No sense in spilled blood over secrets best revealed.”

“I see.” Sidious became calm once more. “You are very wise… yes… most wise indeed. Very well… you have a deal.”

Senator Regenta refilled her glass, and gently toasted to Sidious, with a loud clink echoing through the nearly silent office.
 

Cyborg_Leopard

Chimeric Spirit
Chapter 2:
“We’ll be arriving in the Hantooine system within five minutes, general.” The clone lieutenant informed Kunis.

“Have the fighters prepared to launch as soon as we exit hyperspace.”

“Yes sir.” The clone turned to his console. “All ships, order pilots to the flight deck and begin preparations for battle.”

Commander Brik nodded and walked off the bridge.

-+-

Hantooine was the largest moon of the gas giant Han, the only moon large enough, and with high enough gravity to bear life. The moon was mostly deserted; covered in thick, misty jungles full of hostile wildlife and ancient ruins, jagged cliffs and violent volcanoes, and lustrous black sand beaches. Only a small slice of the planet had any degree of civility to it, a small compound in the southern hemisphere mining and refining ores which would then be shipped as ingots up to the station.

The shipyard was a large space station of Quarren design. The station was built around a central sphere about three kilometers in diameter. Covered in bulbous protrusions, equal parts shield generators and accommodations for internal manufacturing and storage compartments. Around the sphere was a central trench from which an expansive network of docks and construction yards spread like spokes of a wheel. Each one an assembly line with providence dreadnaughts in various stages of completion along each one. Over a hundred ships in total were in production but most were still far from completion. Through the poles of the sphere ran a sweeping tower which grew more narrow as it rose to the top. From the bottom was a massive communications array; with several dishes a hundred meters in diameter. This tower contained several additional bulbs; massive gravitational repulsors which maintained the station’s orbit. Atop the north tower sat a command bridge.

The yard was supported by a massed defensive fleet. Half a dozen completed providence cruisers sat at the center of the fleet. Lucerhulks lumbered about the space surrounding the shipyard, docking and unloading droids and components that had been manufactured out of system. Munificent frigates sat both above and below the orbital plane, with patrols of droids and shuttles buzzing around the surrounding space.

Among the fleet sat a new ship. One which the republic had not yet encountered, and one which did not have its home in this system. The ship vaguely resembled the Providence cruisers, but was thrice the size. Instead of the curved, beaklike front, it had a large open jaw; unarmored cityscape between two curved sheaths of armor. Across the ventral bow sat tiers upon tiers of turbo lasers, and at the midpoint of the ship sat a massive gently domed protrusion; with an conduit of blinding violet light surrounding it.

Contingents of OOM battle droids sat at control consoles glowing from a cold green light. They sat atop a tower patrolling the battle-station. The console began to ping as one of the droids buzzed over the station intercom. A miniature hologram of a female Quarren appeared in diplomatory robes on the console.

“Supreme leader Galia”

“What is it? I’m busy negotiating a price for these power converters.” She responded, sounding irritated. The projection of the hologram moved to show a trio nemoidians which she was negotiating with.

“There is a large fleet exiting hyperspace… more ships aren’t scheduled to arrive until tomorrow.”

“Order the fleets in defensive formation… It’s the republic. They’ve found us.”

As if on cue, at the edge of the gas giant’s gravity well, republic ships began to emerge. At first there was just a single venator. Several seconds passed with only that single ship being in system. Eventually the other ships began to trickle in to the system; leaving a large void in the center of the fleet. One of the Pelta frigates emerging from hyperspace struck the rear of a Munificent patrolling the edge of the gravity well. The rear section quickly enveloped in an expanding fireball. This seemed the cue for turbolasers to begin firing at long ranges.

By the time the Praetor emerged in a large void at the center of the fleet the opening shots of the battle had already been fired, and the nearest separatist frigates and cruisers had already begun to reposition. Kunis looked out over the battle from the panoramic view the bridge of his ship provided, folding his arms behind his back and holding his chin high. Vulture droids had already began amassing in a swarm and were proceeding en masse on the republic fleet. Their own interceptors had begun to spill out of the dorsal and side mounted hangar bays of the Venators.

“It seems our recon underestimated the scale of this operation.” Kunis remarked calmly. “Order the fighters to draw the droid ships closer to the cruisers so that our lasers can pick them off. Keep the heavy cannons focused on that cruiser.”

“Yes sir!” One clone lieutenant responded with a nod.

“Right Away, General.” Another chimed in.

The providence cruiser which had been targeted returned a ferocious broadside; though one that was easily soaked up by the dagger shaped ship four times its size. A squad of vulture droids buzzed past the bridge causing clone officers to flinch in their seats, Slowly, as the surrounding ships began to get into a battle ready formation the cruiser at the center, the one upon which they had focused their fire was beginning to wither. Sapphire turbo-laser shots began to pierce the shields, blowing out sections of hull causing the shielding to fail completely whereupon the ship was promptly destroyed.

Brik ran up to the side of Kunis

“Commander” Brik inquired.

“I don’t think we can outgun them in a straight fight, general, and those droid fighters are pushing our gunners to the limit…”

“Sir, one of our cruisers is losing shields!” An officer interrupted. Kunis looked out the bridge window. To their portside and above the orbital plane a Venator was being pounded by the prow turbolaser of a munificent as droid bombers swooped along its dorsal hangar bay, destroying fighters as they launched. The ship buckled momentarily as the lights along the ships’ side trenches blinked out and the ship fell out of plane and exploded, breaking apart in the process.

The Mon calamari scowled, watching for a moment as crimson laser blasts impacted the bridge shields. A vulture droid, missing its prongs on the righthand side spiraled into the transparasteel window to the right of the jedi master, cracking the glass. Several of the officers jumped but Kunis remained steadfast. The impact had cracked the window, and the bridge was filled with the sound of a loud hiss as the atmosphere rushed into the void of space. One of the officers near the rear threw a switch and that window’s armored shutter closed.

“What should we do sir?” Brik asked to Kunis who was standing, giving a thousand-meter stare out the window.

“General!”

Kunis snapped back to reality. He had felt something. His trust in the Force had buckled. He had felt this would be an easy battle and yet they were losing. But he would have to take action. He hastily formulated a plan in his mind, to get in range of the shipyard.

“Split the cruisers in two groups. Keep a majority of the frigates and fighters surrounding the command ship. They’ll have to divide their forces to counter us and when they do we can push this cruiser through the middle and target the shipyard.” He ordered.

“Are you sure about that general? You’ll leave our cruisers defenseless. We… we should retreat sir.” Brik managed to stutter out.

“Many of your brothers have already died committing to this attack, and countless more will die if those ships reach completion.” Kunis retorted in the matter of fact way many a wise Jedi were known for amongst the clones. “Their sacrifices will not be in vein, you have my word.”

“Right away sir. Cruisers 2,3,5,7,8,10, change heading to 0-9-0!” An officer barked out.

On the control bridge of the shipyard, Supreme Leader Galia stepped off the turbo-lift accompanied by a tactical droid wearing a blue cape; designation TC09. She and the droid walked over to a large holo projector table in the center of the control bridge showing the current positioning of the ships in the battle. The tactical droid briefly studied the tactical position.

“Such elementary tactics they are using. The cruisers will divide our firepower, and their flagship will press through the middle. I calculate their odds of success are fourteen percent.” The droid remarked.

“Now may be a suitable time to test our new weapon…” Galia muttered to herself. She pulled a gilded holoprojector from a pocket in her ornate diplomatory cloak and opened a channel to count dooku.

“A large republic fleet is assaulting our shipyard. Do we have your permission to utilize the Malevolence?” The Quarren asked nervously.

“If they have engaged you, then the Republic has already seen our new battlecruiser. If they retreat they may well learn of the superweapon should they manage to retreat. Take every measure to ensure every last republic clone in that fleet is dead; up to and including firing the ship’s primary weapon.”

The secure holonet connection closed. Galia turned her attention back to the battle, the TC09 was pacing the holo projector table like a predator circling its wounded prey. “Order the fleet to focus fire on the ships to the left. Withdraw the fighters from the battle group on the right. The Malevolence shall disable that group.”

“Which left, their left or our left?” A battle droid managed to squeak out.

“Our left.” The tactical droid responded, backhanding the incompetent battle droid in the head.

“Oww! That hurt!” The droid whined.

“You are a droid.” TC09 responded. “You do not possess pain receptors. Now do your job or I shall order you melted down and baked into the hull of a ship.”

“Rodger Rodger.” The battle droid responded, sounding defeated and carrying out orders.

From the bridge of his cruiser, Kunis watched as the separatist fleet began to focus their attention on the fleet to his right, as the separatist battle cruiser took a prominent position in the middle, facing down their ship head on. He turned around, pacing back to the holo projection table at the rear of the bridge. Kunis paid little mind to the increasing atmosphere of panic on the bridge. The shields of the cruiser had dropped below half and turbolaser shots rocked the bridge in an erratic rhythm. Lights and consoles would flicker on and off. The clone officers, while not shouting, had a certain amount of panic and desperation to the orders they gave out.

Kunis himself felt a certain unease himself. Perhaps it was the sheer number of clones around him, dying… or thinking about dying. It was easy to become complacent in battles where one was winning. Much harder so when one was on the back foot. But he felt something else… something sinister at play.

“Sir. The separatists seem to be focusing a majority of their attention on battle group A; and it looks like that battlecruiser wants to meet us head to head.” Brik remarked after studying the.

“I can see that. Order bombing runs on the battle cruiser from battle group two.” Kunis ordered. “I want Y wings to target its bridge.”

An officer relayed this order through the comms. Kunis overheard the response on the other end.

“This is the Captian of the VSD Liberation. What just happened… our shields were almost gone. Hyena bombers had broken our fighter screen then they just… gave up?” A clone said over the comm.

“Launch Y wings with orders to target the bridge of the separatist battle cruiser…”

“Yes sir right away sir!”

Kunis paused for a moment as he listened to the discussion transpire between the two clones. Another turbolaser blast struck the bridge of the ship. The enemy’s response to his tactic was… unorthodox… unexpected. His greatest fear had been that the enemy might attempt to focus down his flagship with minimal escorts… but why would they withdraw from the battle group… unless… the strange feature on the side of the separatist cruiser… his uneasy sense in the force.

“Blast!” He shouted. “Cancel those Y wings. Order battle group one to scramble! Do it now trooper!” Kunis shouted in a panic. But it was too late. The shallow domed structure on the port side of the malevolence had energized, and the ion disc shot out. Arcs of energy shot through every ship in the fleet, as well as the Y-wings; a few of which had made their way out of the hangars.

Five Munificent frigates arrived just behind the main ship. Two began targeting the engines of the battlecruiser, with the majority of them focused elsewhere. The remaining three targeted the fleet of now disabled ships, their lights and thrusters flickering on and off and their shields inactive. Normally three Munificent frigates would have been no match for twice as many Venators and a pair of acclimators, but with the ships disabled their destruction was all but inevitable.

Their other battle group was fairing no better. With a majority of the separatists focused on them, their formation was being torn apart ship by ship, and with the somber mood the fleet was now in given their mounting losses, many of the clones had lost their furvor and will to fight. It was becoming ever more evident as the seconds ticked by, that no matter how hard they fought, the would lose.

“Kunis!” Brik barked, shaking his shoulder and shaking him back to reality. “We need orders. Our shields are down to 10 percent… we’ve lost over three quarters of our fleet.” Brik begged.

Kunis looked back at him. He saw the face of a solider, the grizzled face of a human. But in the clone’s single organic eye he saw the pure unbridled terror of a child looking back at him.

“All power to the engines. Shields, weapons, I don’t care about them. Take power from life support if you have to!” He shouted over the room full of increasingly desperate clones.

“The general has lost his mind… this is Genosis all over again!” An officer remarked. A turbo laser shot buckled the bridge shields. Systems lost power for a moment, sparks of energy and smoke began to emanate from the controls. An engineering team was called to keep the critical systems spliced together.

“General! With all due respect… are we really going to ram the shipyard… I don’t think we can make it through… that!” He said, gesturing to the bridge and its panorama of the battle. At least a dozen separatist capital ships were pounding the ship with withering volleys of crimson turbo-laser fire. So many shots rained down on the bridge that it almost looked as though the stars were drawing out into lines as they often did when one made the jump to hyperspace.\

“No…” Kunis said coldly, taking a brief glance at the escape pods in the back corner of the bridge. “Trust in your jedi general… for I have trust in the force.”

“We’re losing shields!” A concerned officer shouted as turbolasers began to rock the ship itself, blowing holes in the hull plating. One lucky shot managed to hit the bridge itself, blowing out the every window on the starboard half of the bridge. The explosion shook the bridge with a deafening noise and concussive blast. Brik fell into one of the control pits, rising up and beginning to climb back out, while Kunis managed to keep his footing.

But a few failed to fully activate; red hot and damaged from the impact, leaving cracks and holes through which a deafening wind escaped into the interplanetary void. Through the remaining windows Kunis could see the battle cruiser pull away, to avoid a head on collision.

“Well General, it’s been an honor serving with you.” Brik said, wiping down a bloody nose and climbing out of the control pit.

“We’re… not dead yet. Trooper.” Kunis grunted. “Turn to port!”

A surviving officer looked up at him. Blood was streaming down from an open wound on his forehead. A dent in the control panel with a handful of red droplets offered an explanation of how the wound had gotten there. The trooper fumbled with several buttons, then grabbed hold of a yoke only to jolt back from an electric shock.

Furious, Kunis let out a throaty yell of frustration and lept into the pit of consoles, two other clones crowding in as he pushed aside another clone. Another blast rocked the bridge. The lights went out and the emergency lights came on a second later. The clone fell out of his seat.

Kunis grabbed hold of the steering yoke, only to reel back from the shock . It was true; there must have been a short in the system, one which ended in this control unit. Kunis braced himself and grabbed hold of it. The electricity danced through his body with agonizing authority. Perhaps this was what Sith Lightning felt like. He attempted to pull the control to starboard but it seemed to also be jammed.

In that moment he wanted to give up. Every muscle in his body was impaled by a million tiny needles of energy, but he drew on his will, pulling from every drop of strength within himself, he glared back down at the controls and focused on it. The mon calamari jedi dug into the floor and gave the control one despite push, coupling it with the strength of his force telekinesis. A telekinetic shove the likes of which he felt he had never forced himself to produce. It might have moved a mountain.

“Abandon Ship!” He ordered.

He released it. The yoke was in position. The bridge was filling with smoke, and it was becoming more difficult to see. The officers that had crowded around him were coughing. Kunis let out a cough himself but saw out the few remaining windows that everything was slowly sliding to the left.

Brik put on his helmet. Kunis lept out of the control pit, running through towering flames that caused his robe to catch fire. He threw it off A turbo laser shot caused several ducts to break loose from the ceiling. He dove clear just in time, but Brik was now stranded on the far side. He made his way into the escape pod hatch, two troopers that he did not recognize in armor already inside. But in that moment a turbolaser struck the bridge head on. This time, it was not mere windows that were lost, but the entire front wall of the bridge itself.

The entire bridge was consumed by a howling gale as the atmosphere drained from the Debris and officers were pulled into the void by the dozen. The section of duct which had broken loose began to buckle from its position on the bridge floor, sliding on a trail of sparks first, then flying end-first at commander Brik, who was hanging on to another officer with one hand and a loose bundle of power cables that dangled with the other.

“Let Go!” Kunis shouted to Brik, bellowing so loud as to be heard over the escaping air, his chest ached.

The duct would have worked like a battering ram, sending both Brik and the officer into the void. But Kunis would not allow it. If there was even a remote chance he could save their lives, he would try. He called on the force, trusted it, reaching out with his hand he so subtly altered the direction the duct section would tumble, while he pulled Brik and the officer toward him.

They disappeared for a moment behind the duct. But out of blackness, out of the near end of the duct they appeared. He felt the strength of the force pull weaken, but not a moment too late as he grasped hold of the two clones, holding them both against the choking void of space. This forced his chest against the frame of the hatch surrounding the pod. He gave one last pull, using the force to his advantage, swinging around both Brik and the officer. One of the armored troopers already inside got his hand on the lever.

“Wait!” Kunis shouted to the trooper, still fighting the howling wind. He waited for a second. The Jedi Master’s eyes simply seemed to scan the clones but in his head he was feeling for the force. Waiting for just the right moment. He had to account for the time it would take the trooper to respond and the power the pod would have.

“What are we waiting for?” Demanded the officer.

“NOW!” Kunis shouted.

The hatch closed and the pod released, accelerating out of its bay. Out of the forward viewport they could see the orbital shipyard directly ahead, and now slowly growing closer. Between them was a disarrayed formation of Sepratist warships. Two Venator cruisers from the second battle group were still clinging to some semblance of functionality, with one returning shots from some of its dorsal batteries despite its bridge towers being decapitated. However the prow turbolaser of a Munificent put the ship down for good, causing it to break in half with a massive burst of flame.

The free escape pod vanished into the flames as they dissipated. Minor debris bounced off the viewport as they passed right through the two burning halves of the ship. A pair of vulture droids came dangerously close to them but were shot down by a stray Y-wing pilot. A handful of pilots fighter formed up on the pod, before being forced off by a swarm of vulture droids.

They were now growing dangerously close to the shipyard, the large bluish white rectangular outline of a hangar bay designed to receive larger transports became visible dead-center in their viewport. A point defense cannon on the station began firing on them. After it found its mark, shots started to hit, buckling the pod and causing it to lose power. A torrent fighter strafed the problem turret, but then itself picked up a vulture on its tail.

The pilot preformed a 180 degree turn, but was struck by a concussion rocket moments later, sending a section of one S-foil into the pod, imbedding itself at an oblique angle its momentum sent the disabled pod into a wild rolling spin as the atmosphere vented from a newly made breach. A few moments later the pod passed through the plasma wall into the hangar, scraping against the top wall for a moment before it was arrested by the artificial gravity and plummeted thirty meters on a shallow arc where it impacted the ground. Debris went flying, but the hull of the pod somehow managed to stay together, sliding deeper into the massive hangar, throwing up sparks and flames and tearing gouges into the floor until finally the husk came to a stop.
 

Cyborg_Leopard

Chimeric Spirit
Chapter 3:
Regenta made her way down the halls of the senate building. Navigating the winding hallways between the offices of minor senators, embassies and other politicians she made her way deep into the lower levels of the building. Here ran the maintenance and utility coordoors, where the cleaning droids came to recharge their power cells. Undecorated portions of the building rarely seen by the upper political echelon.

It was here, in this “basement” that the galactic senate that anchored the monumental dome-shaped building into the superstructure of the planet-spanning city. She checked around the corner and slid into a closet; an odd-shaped extra room produced by the imperfect layout of the building, completely undecorated and unused save for some empty crates and scraps left over from the construction of the senate building, and a power line infested with half a dozen conduit worms. A vertical waste water mane ran vertically through the center of the room, about half a meter in diameter.

Though anyone with a formal plan of the building would know that no such waste water line was to run into this room, and if one were to find their way to the exact spot on the floor above, they would find that the pipe ended with the ceiling of this floor.

She gently raised a hand, giving a slight tug in the force to the wall of the pipe. A panel, which near seamlessly blended with the pipe around it came loose, protruding out slightly. There were no handles with which a non force user could easily open her hidden door. This set her mechanism in motion. the raised panel split, with the two halves riding along the outside of the pipe along the seam in the floor and ceiling, parting like a door. A turbolift, only large enough for a single person arrived as if on cue and the senator stepped inside. The turbolift closed as quickly as it appeared, leaving no trace.

Here, Regenta would descend deep into the city. The turbolift rode along a large column of tensor braced physical supports that had been installed to support the senate building, ensuring that the massive structure would never collapse through the layered city. Plastered in smaller tubes, conduits and structures old and new, it provided the perfect cover for the turbo lift.

After several minutes of descent she arrived at the hidden exit. Deep in the underlevels of the planet. This particular level of the city she had chosen for its quiet neighborhood. The dwellers here were mixed, alien, human, slightly mutated from millennia of living amidst synthetic surfaces and toxic chemicals. The entire district was dimly lit with a faint bluish glow, with a thick fog that seemed to linger at all times, contrasting with the few working lighting systems left in the town that gave off a dingy golden yellow hue, and the red blinking identifier lights on nearby support columns.

Most lived in shacks or the duracrete husks of buildings, with limited or now utilities. Many were scarred wtih blaster marks, with evidence of explosions visible in some of them. But the neighborhood now was quiet and dark, built around a waste recycler. A ramshackle device which sat in the center of the town square at all times, guarded by the local militia for its ability to, through engineered microbes convert waste water back into clean water and nutrient paste.

She typically stayed clear of this part of town as the guards had a habit of hassling her for being suspicious. Simply doing away with them was something she had considered… but if she should eliminate the local militia a newer, more violent pack of mutants or bandits might take refuge in the area and cause further trouble.

Sure the occasional begger or death stick dealer might pester her, but they were easy enough to ignore or bypass.

She had easy access from her position at the senate, yet distance. Few senators would dare venture into such an underbelly, and if she hadn’t developed a fair reputation as someone who could… mysteriously, despite not carrying a blaster, easily handle any confrontation.

She made her way along the outskirts of the district, on one side a row of tenements, and on the other a large horizontal support beam walling off the city from its neighbor. The ground was uneven, covered in garbage and organic matter which was soft underfoot with the occasional container or scrap of metal imbedded in, more than half of it covered in a swampy web of puddles containing a mixture of water and unknowable substances.

She made her way to one of the last tenements, in the darkest most seldom trodden portion of town. With a simple hand gesture a few sheets of scrap metal floated aside revealing an armored door. Through another gesture she disarmed the trap and released the lock, proceeding inside her sanctum. The reinforced door slid open, revealing the haphazard battery of about a dozen blasters set to rapid-fire should a Jedi happen upon her sanctuary.

She was mindful of the alarm, and her secondary traps. She headed down the stairs, past a humming pump which kept the basement from flooding into a cavern room that had been carved straight out of the compacted layers of pavement, metal and rubbish. On one side of the room about 30 BX commando droids sat charging on a rack, linked to come online with the triggering of her alarm system. She had bought them with a portion of her own wealth, it was easy to find a willing seller within the senate, though a subtle gesture in the force had been more than to persuade the weak-willed Neimoidian into dropping a zero from the purchase price.

Large portions of the wall were covered in tapestries. Ancient sith runes from dark side witchcraft long forgotten. These patterns were appreciable enough simply on the merit of their aesthetic value, but their true purpose was to mask the sith lair. Regenta approached the rear of the lair, where a large circular hatch sat. She entered a security code on a small keypad and the hatch opened, a pillar rising from the floor. On the pillar, amidst thousands of tiny devices were five vials. Within each one an infant, nearly fully grown. She placed her hand on the first vial, feeling the child’s presence in the force. These clones were not given any growth acceleration as the troopers used by the republic, cloning a force sensitive being would. Given just another month and they would be ready to be removed from their vials and she would relocate off world.

The rack spun about with the press of a button, allowing her to closely examine each one in turn, placing her hand to the glass. She studied them closely. They resembled their would-be mother, in their pale, almost ivory skin, and small tufts of black hair already beginning to emerge on their heads. She was not carrying them herself, sure, but she was their mother. She knew that if others had seen this, they would have seen the thought of growing your children in a vial as despicable, though she felt she was merely misunderstood. Through this she could carefully control every variable, eliminate any illness or weakness they might have, and provide her children the best possible chance to survive this harsh galaxy, to help her carry out her legacy.

The Dark Side was simply a natural state of being for the galaxy, it was a simple fact. For what purpose would sentient beings be created by the force within a physical world if their purpose was not to find attachment, love and passion in the world. To experience the spectrum of beautiful emotions known to all sentients. The Jedi, their dogma of detachment and so-called peace was a horrible illusion to place upon a galaxy plagued by constant war. Though Regenta thought she could hardly agree with the doctrine of the Sith. Their dogmatic rule of two, a construct to keep their order secret had-

An enraged scream. Blinding agony shot through Regenta. Instantly she crumpled to the ground, her force wall throbbing against the crackling torrent of blue hatred. She caught a glimpse out of the corner of her eye of a cloaked figure. Sidious stood on the bottom step, electricity dancing from the tips of his fingers.

“Ignorant! Foolish! Weak!” He declared as he casted the lightning onto her. “You’ve become a rival, and have done a sloppy job of concealing your presence You never should have revealed yourself to me, Senator!”

The Sith lords concentration had slipped in the moment he had insulted her, giving her just enough time to reach out with the force and throw the emergency alarm. The droids released from their charging stations and jumped down into the room, opening fire with their blaster rifles. A few droids peeled out from the back of the group, grabbing the cloning vials off the rack, and running behind one of the concealment tapestries to the secret exit.

Sidious cut down the droids with terrifying ferocity. The commando droids attempted to evade his swings with backflips flips and chain in kicks but found themselves reduced little more than heaps of molten scrap. The remaining droids attempted to pull back, firing streams of blaster fire which were flawlessly redirected to their heads and joints. By the time Regenta managed to get up, still smoking from the surge of force lighting, nearly half her droids already lay in pieces on the floor. She withdrew a pair of crimson lightsabers from her cloak and lunged for the sith lord, something which immediately proved to be a mistake.

Her first strike missed, and a flash of blood-red plasma filled her vision, She managed to pull back from Sidious’ counter in just the nick of time, but felt a sharp sting in her cheek where the very tip of the saber had caught her flesh. For a moment the two exchanged saber strikes, Regenta being forced backward to the now empty cloning vial. However Regenta was promptly disarmed of her sabers, even with two blades against one she was hopelessly outmatched. She felt herself become weightless as her windpipe collapsed. Sidious had her, his presence in the force indomitable; a veritable mountain in contrast to a lowly pebble.

She wasn’t sure what came next. Perhaps more boasting, but the sith lord had no words for her. Perhaps another barrage of force lightning, or perhaps she would be dragged in and sliced apart. Or perhaps she would slowly succumb to the lack of oxygen and blood flow to the head. At least if she had did not still advantage; that this was her own lair, which she had prepared for. She reached out with one arm, managing to throw another switch. This one detonated several small charges, dislodging the tenement above and causing it to collapse into the front portion of the room. Sidious dropped Regenta and she fell, breaking her forearm arm on the pillar that held the cloning vials moments ago.

She didn’t even wait for the pain to set in, there was no time. She ran out the secret exit, only taking a glance over her shoulder to see the sidious holding up the collapsing roof by sheer might of the force. She made her way up through the secret exit tunnel, into an alley where a ship waited, concealed under sheets of scrap metal and tarps, from a distance it simply looked like a large shanty. The last cloning vat was still about halfway between the ship and the secret exit, being carried along by a commando droid, who fired his blaster at the sith lord as he escaped.

Regenta got into the cockpit of the ship as she began the startup sequence. Dark side rage fueled her through the pain of the splinters of bone in her arm, but also a desire to protect. Sidious would surely have the clones… no the children… killed before they could ever know life. To him they would represent too many variables, too many potential rivals, a complete desecration of the rule of two and the absolute rule the sith lord so plainly desired over the galaxy.

A bolt of force lightning shot from the sith to the last commando droid, who fell face first, instantly disabled by the lightning. Through the rear camera she could see electricity dancing about the cloning pod and the unborn child. She screamed, tears streaming from her eyes and gripped the controls. A turret extended from the side of the ship. She pulled down on the fire control, unleashing a stream of powerful blaster bolts. The sith lord deflected them, some of them striking the ships hull, damaging systems. But she did not care. She had just seen this abomination lash out, with the purest depiction of hatred and malice; force lightning, against an unborn child.

Another commando droid approached, picking up the cloning vial and rushing onboard the ship as Regenta continued to scream, squeezing the fire control harder in a vein attempt to make the blaster shoot ever faster. The system began to overload from the sheer number of fire commands, the blaster being pushed well past its safe operating temperature. Finally, the droid was onboard and the ramp retracted, and engines forced the ship off the ground, shedding the remainder of the canvas and scrap that disguised it. She circled the armed shuttle around, firing on Palpetene once more before accelerating away with a spread of crimson laser bolts, reducing the entire block of tenements to rubble.

Regenta felt she could not control herself. She continued to circle back, strafing the same section of the city over and over, until eventually, on the seventh pass, the ship’s cannon finally gave out from overheating. The entire district was little more than a patchwork of craters and debris occluded by smoke and the occasional flickering flame. The sith lord was gone and the underworld police would no doubt be on the scene en masse within a few more minutes due to the commotion.

A red and white astromech she kept aboard the ship, which acted as her co-pilot took the controls. She felt her grip on the controls loosen as pain set in to her hands; having had such a grip on the controls she could see her hands reddened from the strain. She turned, walking back into the passenger compartment. The four surviving battle droids stood in the back, slotting the cloning pods into the wall. The droid passed the fifth pod to her wordlessley.

She studied it. The droid she assumed had taken a majority of the lightning, but the pod had been damaged. The life sign monitor showed sporadic readings, but the child inside looked to be fine. The infant had changed positions since she had last checked, curling into a tight ball. She felt for his life force, which, much to her was very well still present in her child.

Her legs felt weak. She slumped down against the wall of the starship, holding the child still within his container. She was a long ways from the stunning woman she had been an hour ago. Her hair, once neatly crimped into her dress was now a mess, frazzled and smoking from the bolts of force lightning. Her right arm bruised and bleeding internally from the fracture, now that the adrenaline had subsided, it hung nearly useless by her side, and her cheek had been cut open. She felt the tears come, blurring her vision, and let them come. She was alone, save for the droids. But they were simply hollow shells, machines bound to her service which would not pass any judgement on her in her present state.

Why was she so upset? She asked herself. Had she really become this attached to her children? Had she felt pitiful for her mistake. She knew now she should have never revealed herself, and simply carried on. Regenta had always felt that emotions were beautiful, even the ones so commonly associated with darkness or negativity.

She wiped the tears from her eyes, and studied her unborn child. Her own flesh and blood and presence within the force floated before her. For an unending moment she stared into the child’s closed eyes. She felt her vision growing clouded with tears and wiped them away with her arm. The room started to spin, with the droids returning to their charging stations. She tried to focus on the infant in the tube, continuing to admire her handiwork, to ensure that every inch of the child remained untouched.

The baby’s eyes shot open. His irises were a deep sapphire blue. He uncurled from the fetal position and outstretched an arm. Regenta began to choke. He raised his arm higher and she floated up off the floor, her feet dangling. The sensation of choking was all too familiar as it was the second time within just a few minutes she’d been force choked. The pod began to float above the floor, in the middle of the passenger compartment. The lights started to flicker on and off and all of the pods began beeping. The controls sparked and the glass cracked, the fluid inside spilled out. The levitating pod started to shake, then exploded like a bomb, sending shards of glass and bacta fluid splattering all over the wall. The other children remained in place inside their pods, crying, wailing, while the one she had cradled floated motionless in the air, pinning her to the wall via a force choke.

The levitating infant raised his arm and then forced her into the wall with such speed she crumpled the durasteel wall of the ship around her with a deafening slam. She felt every bone in her body crush into gravel, and let out a scream.

She awoke, gasping for breath. The child she had been cradling was still in the cloning vial, still curled in the fetal position with his eyes closed. His life signs had still not normalized completely. She saw one of the commando droids waiting wordlessly beside her, and gently released her grip on the cloning pod such that the droid take it and slot it into the wall with the others. Judging by her discomfort and the stiffness that had set in to her muscles, she had been out for quite awhile. Sharp pain was still shooting from her broken arm, she knew she would have to find a proper medical droid before long.

She reached for a medical kit on the wall, finding a bacta and bota injector, and injected it into her arm as she shakily made her way up the staircase back into the cockpit of the ship. They were now at lightspeed, heading to galactic east, toward the unknown regions. She sat down in the pilots seat but did not assume control. Instead she simply began tending to her wounds and her haggard appearance. The bacta had already begun to ease the pain of her shattered arm, but she was still a long way from fighting condition.
 

Cyborg_Leopard

Chimeric Spirit
Chapter 4:

The crumpled husk of an escape pod sat at the end of a long trail of debris within the hangar of the separatist shipyard, plumes of flame and smoke rising from the pod. A contingent of firefighter droids prepared to hose down the pod, but as they readied the hose, the hatch was pierced by a blue blade. The blade melted through the crumpled metal carving a circle. Once it had finished, the circle that had been carved was forced out, landing with a loud clatter on the hangar floor.

“Now!” A clone shouted from within the pod. A blue and brown blur shot from the pod and landed a few meters in front of it. Kunis landed in front of the pod, withdrawing a long lightsaber handle from his belt and igniting a single blade.

“Freeze, Jedi” Declared the firefighter droid, leveling the hose at him and opening the valve. Kunis dove to the side with a loud grunt, evading the stream of water and allowing it to extinguish the flames of the pod. The droid began to swing the hose in his direction but Brik poked his head out of the pod just long enough to line up a headshot with his carbine. The droid let out a yelp as his droid brain was reduced to slag by the blaster bolt. His partner attempted to grab the hose but Kunis preformed a force pull, pulling the droid in towards his shoulder and then bisecting him along his saber.

The four clones that had managed to make it out of the pod and grouped up next to their jedi general as the clank of dozens of B1’s filled the hangar. It quickly became apparent that they had been immediately surrounded on all sides by hundreds of droids.

“Get behind me” Kunis ordered. He extended the second blade of his saber staff and held it out. Kept in place on his vertical palm via a gentle tug of force telekinesis he began to spin the saber like a windmill, making modest adjustments as to send every blaster bolt directed at the whirlwind back at the droids marching at them as the clones fired out from the side. He pushed into a run, the troopers following behind him.

“Take their weapons!” He continued as he pushed into the fallen cluster of droids. The troopers obeyed, and the stray officer that was with them. Kunis himself picked up a blaster with his free hand and picked off several droids. One of the unpainted clones took a blaster shot to the shoulder and one arm fell limp. He continued to fire back. Once they were clear of a majority of the droids, the five managed to duck behind some munitions crates. Kunis sliced open an air vent and they climbed inside.

On the bridge of the shipyard station, the droid gave his report.

“Supreme leader, we’ve got reports of an escape pod crashed in the hangar.”

“Minor incidents such as this do not concern me, machine.” Galia retorted.

“There was a Jedi onboard who survived the crash. He took out some of our security droids and we lost sight of him in the hangar.”

“Very well. Begin venting the atmosphere in the lower sections, and order destroyer droids to all the access points between the lower and upper levels and get a security detachment down to the hangar decks… and tell our business partners to get into a sealed compartment.” She responded firmly.

Back in the lower levels the troopers and the jedi managed to find place inside the section of the station where the secondary vents adjoined to a major line running to the life support systems. The vent was dark, illuminated only by the troopers’ flashlights and Kunis’ saber.

The injured trooper slumped up against the wall with a grunt. He removed his helmet. He was clearly part of a new batch fresh from Kamino. No scars or tattoos… well he might have just earned a scar. The trooper gritted his teeth and grabbed the shoulder pauldron with his good arm. The body glove underneath simply peeled off. along with the shoulder plate, revealing red, blistered skin.

Brik turned to the trooper, and removed his own helmet, and inspected the wound.

“Armor did its job… but these still hurt… a lot. Whats your name, trooper?”

“CT-07707.” He responded, masking a majority of his pain under the military tone and discipline that had been instilled in him through his kaminoan training.

“Three sevens, eh?” Brik said reaching onto his utility belt, he pulled out a general purpose bacta injector. “Mind if I call you Lucky?” He asked as he drove the needle into the center of the wound and injected the milky bluish medication.

“Sir. Call me whatever you like sir.”

“Alright trooper. You’re lucky and you aren’t dead yet. and the general seems to think there’s still a chance we can finish this mission. So get your helmet on and let’s get moving.” Brik ordered, sliding his own helmet back on. In that same moment a strong gail picked up, rushing down the side of the air duct.

“What’s going on?” Shouted the unnamed trooper.

“They’re venting the atmosphere!” Kunis exclaimed.

“Maglock boots! Now!” Brik declared. The troopers managed to anchor themselves against the gale force wind, but Kunis himself was starting to be dragged backwards. He quickly extracted his saber and carved into the wall of the duct a few meters behind the clones, managing to complete a roughly circular opening before being dragged down further. Upon finishing the section of duct he had carved out got sucked in. The Jedi evaded the molten-edged metal disc by virtue of his force reflexes as it tumbled like a coin before falling flat on the floor of the duct where it remained relatively unaffected by the tempest. Kunis preformed a force, assisted leap and made his way into the exit. Though he had simply made another route for the air to rush in.

Once clear Kunis saw the room they were in. The air duct ran above a large power generator room, seemingly connected to the hangar they were in earlier. Kunis balanced himself on a narrow truss before reaching a hand inside. One by one he managed to pull the troopers clear of the duct and onto the support beam that ran near the ceiling. The Jedi studied the power generators for a moment, taking a glance at the detonators the three troopers had, he scowled. Brik looked at him through his helmet.

“Jump down one at a time. I’ll catch you.” The Jedi uttered solemnly before leaping from the beam. One by one the troopers came down after him, and he would catch them on a carefully crafted cushion of force telekinesis. Once the three troopers and the officer were with him, he looked around at all of them, at the endless hall of humming power generators that surrounded them. Kunis studied the clones, stroking his chin for a moment and glancing at the ground. The clank of hundreds of droid feet scrambling to find them could be heard. Wind still rushed through the room as the atmosphere continued to slowly drain away.

“Gentlemen.” He addressed the clones. “It won’t be long until they find us, and even I can tell the air is getting thin. Plant your charges on the power generators.”

“But general!” Brik spoke. “That’s suicide.”

“Commander Brik. It won’t be long until the droids find us, or until we run out of oxygen. We’re already dead. So I say we make the end memorable!” The jedi declared, holding his lightsaber, one end ignited, into the air.

The troopers nodded and began running about, planting charges on the nearest generators. Just as the last charges were being set a squad of battle droids entered through a hatch and immediately opened fire. The bridge officer that had been following them up until was hit immediately. The other three ducked behind the generators, weaving between the conduits and members that tied the generators together they managed to duck out of the room, as Brik laid down suppressing fire and even managed to land a handful of headshots on the droids as they retreated into the hallway.

The lead droid contacted the bridge of the station via a handheld holoprojector.

“Supreme leader. We recently sighted the Jedi and his companions in the power generator room but they escaped… and what’s that sound?” The curious droid asked, turning to the sound of something letting out fast, high pitched beeps.

“Fools!” She declared. The quarren’s eyes grew wide with fear.

The hallway from the power generators to the hangar was only a stone’s throw. The four survivors knew if they had any chance, no matter how small, to escape, that they should take it. However a hail of fire from active droids in the hangar caught them off guard. They were left with one option for cover. an AAT which had been parked only a few meters from where they had emerged from the hallway back into the hangar. The clones ducked for cover in the tank. Kunis dove in last, deflecting a few stray shots.

Kunis closed the back door to the tank. The droid in the reactor room reached for the explosive charge. Brik squeezed the detonator.

The initial blast shook the entire shipbuilding station, quickly triggering a cascade of other explosions throughout the station as systems started to fail. The tank they were in was not active and they had no bearing on what happened outside. A support member fell upon the tank, jolting it downward and throwing its unwilling crew into the ceiling, putting all of the troopers unconscious. Kunis felt himself slipping into unconsciousness as he was thrown about the interior like a rag doll.

Outside the station, surrounded by the wrecks of a dozen republic warships and even more, still active, separatist starships. The shipyard itself buckled, as the viewports changed from blue and white to orange and flames began to erupt from the hangars. The failures became critical and the station was unseated from its orbit as the bottom third was torn off by a tremendous blast of blue and white plasma which annihilated the incomplete ships still in dry dock. Skyscraper sized chunks of debris were flung out by the blast, some impacting with nearby cruisers impaling their hulls or bisecting the ships entirely. Many trillions of credits of droids and separatist military hardware burned away in the titanic blast. Both halves of the shipyard began to slowly drift in the direction of the jungle moon as they were arrested from their unnatural, repulsorlift- biased orbit back by the forces of gravity.
 

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