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( "Don't strain your neck looking down. You're going to be in enough pain in just a second." )

0 · 299 views · located in Star Wars

a character in “Star Wars: A Galaxy In Flames”, as played by FollowerOfDarkPaths






Language(s): Jawanese, Jawa Trade Language, some Galactic Basic

Chogna was born to the Tweeb clan of jawas that inhabited the dry and sandy planet of Tatoonie, the only child of the clan shaman. He grew up in an active but enjoyable life, learning the salvaging trade while occasionally helping his mother with a ritual or two. As time passed he began to find the life of scavenging and trading to be very dull especially when he began to hear tales from the spacers, mercs and off world traders they dealt with regularly. Shortly after turning twenty three, he took all the credits he had saved up over the years as well as a few gifts from his clan and went to Mos Eisley to purchase weapons and a way off his home world. He found his ticket off Tatooine in the form of a human smuggler named Jacks Malhorn who was looking for crew mates to help his runs go by smoother. Chog's knowledge of star ship engines and wiring made him a great addition to the small alien crew. This went on happily for a few years until a band of aqualish pirates who killed Jacks and took everything they had before leaving their ship broken down and drifting only to be found by a Republic cruiser a few days later. After being put through the system and spending a few days in prison for potential smuggling charges, he was released a different jawa. He began training with a blaster and learning every nook, cranny and crevice of his weapon as he started figuring out how to compensate his small size with skill, precision and just a bit of tinkering. After doing a few odd ( and slightly violent ) jobs over the years, he had enough credits to hire a crew to track down the pirates. The deed was done quickly as they found their hideout and took them down with little to no resistance. This quickly made Chogna a lot of new friends and enemies as people began taking notice of the little jawa for better or for worst. Now with war in full swing the semi-experienced merc is finding a lot of work, favoring independent and Republic contracts over working with the Confederacy or, worse yet, the Empire though he still makes a nice income despite his picky choice of work. What makes him so good at his job? Well, if you were told some mean son of a bantha was coming after you, would you ever expect a jawa?

Jawa Ion Blaster
Modified WESTAR-M5 Blaster Rifle
Modified L-23 Blaster Pistol
Thermal Detonator x3
Blaster Power Pack Belt
Tool Belt

Strength - 2
Dexterity - 7
Charisma - 6
Intelligence - 9
Awareness - 6
Constitution - 3
Luck - 6


Major -
Blasters ( Rifle )
Demolition ( Improvised Explosives )
Security ( Hacking )

Minor -
Speech ( Bartering, Blackmail )
Piloting ( Freighter )
Programming ( Sabotage )

So begins...

Chogna's Story


Characters Present

Character Portrait: Davern Korosnos Character Portrait: Ati Jendrassi Character Portrait: Edar Xann Character Portrait: Rift Kilbaine Character Portrait: Chek Character Portrait: Koda'Rai
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It is 500ABY, the war between the three armies has ravaged many planets. The Republic has the soldiers, the guys with the heart who fight for their family. The Confederacy has the numbers, able to create a massive army quickly. The Empire has the advanced technology and vehicles, ending their foes with powerful weapons. No one faction is truly winning, and its the civilians who are paying for it. Everyone is affected by it, including you. You find yourself walking in a field of tall grass, the sun high in the sky and the temperature to be very comfortable. There are children running around, playing their innocent games. Their parents are sitting in the shade of a nearby tree, sharing a laugh here and there as they watch their kids. Before you even have time to move, a shadow is cast over the whole field. The air becomes thicker. The children stop playing. They look at you. Their faces show confusion. You can see people approaching from behind the kids, they appear to be wearing armor and are too shadowed out to make out who they are. The men hold up rifles, and open fire on the kids. You try to move, but you are frozen in place. The parents scream and run to their children, only to be mowed down. As the men start to head toward you, you gain control of yourself once more and start to turn. You turn into another man, a man who looks more like a silhouette than a man. His eyes seem to be black holes, and the lack of feeling coursing through your body makes you sweat. You find that you cannot break eye contact, and as you manage to mutter out the word "noo..", he just smiles and takes a step forward. He draws what looks like a blade with unseen speed, and just as fast as he took it out, he lunges towards you. You know there is nothing you can do...

THUNK! You awake with a jump and bang your head on the wall. You realize that it was all just a dream, and that you are on a transport. You have been on for a while now, and the last stop before your destination is Tatooine. No one seems to have noticed you had hit your head, and in fact, they all look like they had just woken up. You don't really know anyone here, and you probably don't want to. The space in the transport is limited to the rectangular room you currently reside in. It contains a total of 30 seats around the room, with a bathroom in the back. The room itself isn't too small, but there is a good amount of people on. At least half of the seats are taken up. You lean back in your seat and realize that you've got a while until the next stop. Maybe you could find something to do in the mean time...

The black rectangle is the room, with chairs in rows facing the front. The small room in the bottom right corner of the room is the restroom...


Rift, wearing his brown cloak with his hood up, got up and walked over to the window in the back across from the bathroom. Lost in thought, he scratched at his beard. Adenn was hidden under his cloak, along with his DH-17. Through the glass, he was looking at Tatooine. The Dust Ball as the spacers called it. He had been there many times, mostly Mos Eisley. Once he landed, he planned on visiting some old friends, and then moving on to the next planet. It was a lonely life-style, but he didn't think himself worthy of better company. He had been searching for a purpose, for a place in the galaxy for quite some time, since he was 18, but his hope for belonging had withered away years ago.

The transport checked in with the space station, and began its course onto Tatooine.


Characters Present

Character Portrait: Davern Korosnos Character Portrait: Ati Jendrassi Character Portrait: Edar Xann Character Portrait: Rift Kilbaine Character Portrait: Koda'Rai Character Portrait: Shikle Sevii
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Edar Xann groaned after smacking his helmet to the wall, before commenting "Blast it, it sure is a long ride to Tatooine." His voice was distorted through his helmet, he thought about getting himself a disguise, but his engorged pride would not let him, clad in his imperial scoutrooper armor instead. As the emperor's representative on this desolate galaxy, he had to go about his business stating one thing with his appearance, the emperor would reign supreme, as he always should have. He saw a cloaked figure stand up, Edar Xann slowly moved his hand to his blaster. After Rift Kilbaine got to the window, and began stargazing, Edar Xann relaxed.

He stood up and hailed all the travelers within the vehicle "Hail citizens, as you probably were thinking this is our last transport before reaching Tatooine, which is a sandy little hell, in case you were wondering." His heartbeat got faster, as these were quite a collection of dangerous looking individuals, he resumed his speaking "Tatooine is by no means affiliated to the empire, so be on your guard citizens." He coughed, before finishing "With that in mind, have a safe stay, all hail the emperor!" After a small pause he added "For it is by his glorious army that we have all made it through safely. We constantly patrol deep space, with an unmatched navy. The emperor provides, citizens, never forget that. That is all." With that, he cautiously took a sit, keeping his blaster pistol's holster opened, keeping a vigilant eye on the other passengers.


Characters Present

Character Portrait: Davern Korosnos Character Portrait: Ati Jendrassi Character Portrait: Edar Xann Character Portrait: Rift Kilbaine Character Portrait: Chek Character Portrait: Koda'Rai
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"And you... If you wanted water... You should have brought it yourself... What are you some kind of rainbow burned Killik, did you lose your hive my friend, I feel so sorry for you."One of the armored people addressed him in disdain, so he decided to correct the misunderstanding, but the human he'd approached spoke first.

"I'm sorry about that, those Mandalorians aren't the friendliest around." The man had a scowl on his face but continued speaking, "I'm Rift. Follow me, I'll show you how to get water whenever you need it, without asking."

Koda'Rai was intrigued by this, usually he drank from water tanks when they were just beginning to purify it after recycling. A method like what this Rift spoke of would be invaluable. "This one is known as Koda'Rai, Human Rift receives its utmost thanks." The translator made conversations such as this a bit awkward but his message should come across clear enough. At that moment a blaster went off, the reflection showed it was aimed at the Mandalore, and a another took a knee.

"You want to put a hole in the hull, di'kut?! What a shining example of Imperial discipline you are." A tone he'd learn to recognize as female rang out. Koda'Rai was caught in a complex, faith mandated all pilgrims through the stars be protected. But he had no way to interfere with the blaster shot, his exoskeleton was as good as armor but he couldn't get there in time. At that moment, he felt a burning sensation at the back of his skull and the sound of blaster bullet hitting the tip of his stun stick was heard. It's weight was also absent from his back...but how did his stick get there in time? A miracle from Those from Beyond the Veil perhaps? At any rate, the situation may now be diffused.

"Among Koda'Rai's people, the safety of pilgrims among the star is a divine mandate and must take place above all else." He spoke as walking to get his stun stick, the translator making him sound far calmer than he actually was. "Mandalore of before, this one would like to express that it is mammal and not of the Killik species." His swift yet graceful strides took him to his staff, which was undamaged and he quickly returned it to his back.

"Beyond that, this one comes from a peaceful people and would like to implore that others also understand that waste of war. After all, life is not something to be spent and wasted for worldly desires such as power. Lastly, this one also wishes to thank Those from Beyond the Veil for intervening and choosing this one's staff to protect what peace is aboard this vessel."

He went through the symbolic gestures for addressing the holy ones as he spoke. With that he turned to Rift, "Human Rift, before the occurrence of the Divine Ones miracle you were showing this one how to get water. The continuation of that action would be most appreciated."


Characters Present

Character Portrait: Davern Korosnos Character Portrait: Ati Jendrassi Character Portrait: Edar Xann Character Portrait: Rift Kilbaine Character Portrait: Chek Character Portrait: Koda'Rai
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A few more moments of flight later sees you in the planet's atmosphere, the beautiful sights of the... Sand. The hum of the engine cuts out quite suddenly, for a moment the feeling of zero gravity hits, and the ship begins to fall at a very sharp angle towards the giant dust ball. At first the passengers don't realize whats happening. Confusion sets in, and panic can be felt starting in the air. What breaks the silence and commences the panic, is one poor fool exclaiming "The Ship Is Falling!". The screaming starts, and the panic sets in. Those near the walls and windows start banging and clawing them.

The ship continues to fall, the strain on the frame of the ship causes numerous creeks and groans, as though it is being pulled apart. Seconds feel like hours. Chaos has completely taken over the ship, with people being trampled. Suddenly, the lights flash back on, and the ship starts to pull up. Everyone seems to breathe a sigh of relief. The ride seems to smooth out. Everyone is quiet. A strange energy is felt in the air, and then the ship drops one last time.

The last thing you see before complete darkness, is durasteel.

The impact is devastating. The ship slams into the ground. The stern flips over the bow, then bow over the stern, and this process repeats 2 more times. On the third roll, the bow is sent flying forward, while the stern just slides forward for a little bit. Once the bow stops flipping, it slides just like the stern. The ship, being ripped in half, comes to a stop. The engines, luckily enough, had not exploded. Everyone who was in the front of the ship is dead; crushed, cut, and ripped apart. Anyone from the back is now cut up, bruised, and bears many broken bones. Silence encompasses the scene, seemingly the whole desert.

Blood covers the bow, and scatters the stern. Sand begins to blow on the remains, and for the longest amount of time, there is no motion from the ship and its passengers.

It is now, that you begin to awaken. While you were out, you had a dream, a nightmare, that bears an awful resemblance to a dream you had not too long ago...


Characters Present

Character Portrait: IG-136/59 Character Portrait: Davern Korosnos Character Portrait: Ati Jendrassi Character Portrait: Edar Xann Character Portrait: Rift Kilbaine Character Portrait: Chek
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#, as written by Raidose
Over the sands of the Dune Sea, two figures sped along there way, one being the Bounty Hunter droid, IG-136, the other being the desperate Zannin Korrik, who was weaving his way through the blaster bolts. The Zabrak's speeder spat out smoke and fire, showing the wounds gained from the droids hand canon. The two raced through the desert in a deadly game of cat and mouse, far more deadly for one than the other. Actually, it probably wasn't really that deadly for the droid at all. The bounty placed on the Zabrak's head wasn't one earned for violence or savvy cunning, it was earned from cheating a Hutt in a speeder race. The man wasn't some hardened villain who traversed the galaxy spreading terror to all, he was just some poor, frightened kid who figured out how to hide an illegal auxiliary drive in his bike. And he was going to suffer an unbelievably terrible fate for it, for IG-136 wasn't going to kill him. The bounty was nearly three times higher for a live capture, and the droid's programming demanded that it strive for the highest reward.

Finally, the heavy blaster scored a fatal hit on Zannin's speeder, causing it's hover field to fluctuate. In a panic, he used his auxiliary boosters to try and fly up a dune, only to have his hover field give out entirely near the crest. The front of the craft dig deep into the sand, catapulting it's pilot through the air with a rather impressive launch. The Zabrak slammed and rolled down a neighboring dune, cushioning his fall from nearly eighty feet from his launching point. Zannin limped away with as much vigor as he could muster, as the droid arrived on his speeder. Droids do not feel fatigue, nor exhaustion, nor any sort of discomfort from heat. This is well known. IG-136 would lose absolutely nothing from running after his target, and the Zabrak was still not worth the added effort. IG only strode comfortably, calmly, even arrogantly, following it's mark to his inevitable end. Until his audio receptors picked up on something...... intriguing.

A distant sound, like a roaring Krayt Dragon. The sound permeated the air, as a large transport plummeted down to the planet's surface. The large craft cartwheeled several times, something which anything that massive should not be able to do. Sure enough, the entire thing tore in half from it's own mass. The bow was flung through the air from an incalculable amount of centripetal force, and IG's internal computer began doing a little math from it's trajectory and was able to estimate where the eighty million ton chunk of steel would land. And who it would land on.

"Exclamation: .............Fuck."

The bow of the ship landed squire on Zannin, it's enormous mass obliterating any trace that the Zabrak ever existed. A 300,000 credit bounty was now made impossible to collect on. The ship slid on it's belly, creating a tidal wave of sand. It skid less than 8 feet from IG-136, who was more focused on how to show proof of death when there were now zero traces of organic remains. By the time the droid turned his attention to the ship, it had lost all momentum. Of course, IG was contemplating extreme violence. He quickly walked over to the still steaming hull, crunching over the glassed sand. The ends of his robe began to char and burn as he stepped right up to the half-a-transport, giving several rapid knocks before addressing it's occupants. Having no concern of their well-being.

"Addressment: Attention All Moronic Meatbag Occupants Of This Vessel! Request: Would You All Please Step Out Single File In An Orderly Fashion.... So That I May Extract My Bloody Vengeance By Skinning All Of You Alive?!"


Characters Present

Character Portrait: IG-136/59 Character Portrait: Davern Korosnos Character Portrait: Ati Jendrassi Character Portrait: Edar Xann Character Portrait: Rift Kilbaine Character Portrait: Chek
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#, as written by Zarhara
Chek awoke groaning, blood was dripping from a cut on his forehead and now he had yet another nightmare about a massacre. Why do I keep having these dreams? He though to himself. As of now he had been glad he was strapped in. He looked around the ship, he tried to recall what had happened before the crash. There had seemed to have been some sort of disagreement was this the cause of the crash? He was too dazed to be sure.

Then he heard the Voice. Attention All Moronic Meatbag Occupants Of This Vessel! Would You All Please Step Out Single File In An Orderly Fashion.... So That I May Extract My Bloody Vengeance By Skinning All Of You Alive? If anything he wondered if it was even a remotely good idea to be leaving the vessel but then decided it would probably be better to face what ever is out there rather than risk staying here and waiting for the possible explosion of what ever remained in the fuel tank.

Unbuckling himself he got up and tested his feet. He seemed to walk alright for being in a crash his head still pounding and ignoring the spread out corpses he walked across the ship pulling his black cloak tight around him until he found the exit he looked at the access panel and realized it required a code. Peeling off the outer hatch he reached in and tried to rewire the thing. "Come on...come on." He mumbled as he fumbled with the wires. It was clear Chek had a concussion but it was not know to him as he had completely forgotten about the Hole in the ship.


Characters Present

Character Portrait: IG-136/59 Character Portrait: Davern Korosnos Character Portrait: Ati Jendrassi Character Portrait: Edar Xann Character Portrait: Rift Kilbaine Character Portrait: Chek
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#, as written by Raidose
Warnings flashed over IG-136's receptors as one of them picked up the sniper taking aim. The advantage to having only a few true blind spots. The weapon was likely either a particle beam or disruptor, meaning difficult to dodge. The calculated choice was overridden by it's self preservation, sacrificing one of it's vibroswords to absorb the blast, disintegrating as soon as it left it's hand. This had been unexpected. Disruptor weapons on a civilian transport. There was no time, as it seamed one of the meatbags did as told and exited the vehicle, only the swing a vibrosword at it's face. A much slower weapon, easier to dodge, and IG did so gracefully.

Bending backwards at the knees, using it's left hand to maintain stability, the blade missed it's mark by a foot. It's right hand quickly took aim at the sniper, firing several Taze Darts at the assassin. Hopefully a well-fried nervous system would keep it occupied for a while. But there was still the matter of the blade-wielder. Using it's left hand as it's only support, it raised it's legs from the ground and began rotating at the waste, quickly revving up to nearly one hundred rpms. The rotating of it's arm swung the blunt, windmill of pain back around into the face of the human, sprawling him onto the sand. Surprisingly, the fight in this one was admirable and he wasted no time retrieving his blade and getting to his feet.

Audio receptors indicated movement from inside the craft. All with better cover than the droid possessed. A secondary warning alerted it to the presence of another possible assailant behind it. The droid leaped up the side of the ship, gaining both cover and the higher ground, as it began working out it's next actions. Once again, it's audio receptors indicated more movement, but this was the crunching of sand as apposed to the clanking of boots on metal. One of them was attempting to flee. Sure enough, one in imperial armor sprinted over the dunes, even though there was little to nowhere for him to go.

"Clarification: I did not say their would be exceptions to the meatbag fatalities."

With that, a bolas flew from it's arm. However, it had unexpected results. The imperial tripped or stumbled for a moment right before the bolas made contact, causing it to only bind around one of his legs. Instead of detaining him, it now merely served as a weighted annoyance. Irritating, IG would have to retrieve both the imperial and the bolas later. For now there was still the matter of-

Incoming Comms Communication.
Caller: Master Je'khi Z'roshi.

"Statement: This is awkward......."

Transmission Accepted.

"Well? Where is my payment? Why haven't you caught Zannin yet?"

"Statement: Master, I regret to inform you that the bounty is no longer collectible."

"And why is it this time?"

"Honest Truth: Because there appears to be an eighty ton transport vessel on top of him, Master."

"Say What?! How could you screw this up?!"

"Statement: Fortune telling is not in my list of protocols, Master. I can not predict when random space junk will fall from the sky and by happenstance land on a Zabrak. Let alone that Zabrak."

"You worthless piece of scrap, that's twice now you've lost one!"

"Clarification: The last one, like this one, was not my fault, Master. The Rodian's compatriots abandoned their rescue attempt without first informing their companion. He opened that Air-Lock all on his own, Master."

Spying an opportunity at retaliation, IG pounced at the human, blaster in one hand and sword in the other. All of it's secondary photo receptors were keeping watch for movement, responding with blaster fire at all those in the ship. This was a terrible waste of ammo, but it kept there heads down. IG re-worked it's footing to place the human between it and any snipers, it's blade spinning like a saw in it's rotating hand.

"Why do I keep hearing blaster fire? I thought you said the Zabrak was dead?"

"Clarification: I did. Statement: A new issue has arose, Master."

Another warning flared up as a secondary assailant attacked from behind with two blades. The droid's joints folded up as it rolled like a ball to the side, nearly causing the two to slice each other in half. The issues were starting to pile up, but the only lethal one was the possible disruptor rifle that was still in effect as a major threat. Keeping track of the wreckage for gunners, and now three different vibroswords, the threat rating of this situation was escalating. With three means of attack, the blade-wielding foes could hold IG in place long enough for the other to gain a shot. That was not acceptable. Spinning at the waste like a top, the droid created enough usable space to exit this confrontation. Using it's magnetized feet and enhanced leaping capability, it traversed the side of the ship, firing several more bolts at the passengers inside. For a brief moment, it took note of all those it could see. Noting the two in Mandalorian armor, two humans, one imperial, one human-looking alien with the disruptor, and.....

Current thought Process: What the Sith is that that?!
Searching Known List Of Species....
No Match Found.
New Designation For Unknown Species: Insect Thingy.

After nearly being caught in a paradox-loop, the droid scrambled back to the top of the ruined craft.

"Query: Well that be all, Master?"

"..... No. I've accepted a new assignment for you. If you can't take someone alive, then maybe you can keep someone alive."

"Query: Come again?"

"This is it, 136. Dead or Alive bounties are not acceptable. You do this job right, or I'm going to personally see you melted down. I'm transmitting the details now."

Incoming Data Cache.
Assignment Details.
Objective: Escort Target Until Arrival At Destination.
Assigned Destination: To Be Determined.
Target Name: Koda'Rai
Target Species: Aiing-Ti
Target Description:

"........ ....... ........ Exclamation: If I had the time.... I'd calculate what the odds are that this just happened......."

"What? What is it now?"

"Statement: Nothing, Master. This conversation has been most enjoyable, but I must depart. I shall report back soon. Good-bye."


Transmission Terminated.

Now there was the issue of defusing a situation it may or may not have started.

" Quotation: If you seek peace, speak softly and carry more explosives."

The droid lowered himself into a covered position, able to easily expose it's selected weapon for this instance.

"Addressment: Would the armored meatbag Koda'Rai happen to be present in this craft? Dictation: Please have your entourage lower their weapons. Specifically the one with the disruptor weapon."

IG swung it's right leg into view, using the photoreceptor in it's knee to spot the sniper in question. Thanks to the crash, many f the vessels contents spilled out onto the sand, leaving little cover inside. With the missile already armed to fire, the droid made his point clear.

"Explanation: It is my current objective to escort the assigned Insect Thingy Koda'Rai until the designated safe destination has been reached. Clarification: However, my protocols dictate an extreme disliking to the possibility of being demolecularized. Please place the disruption rifle on the ground, hostile meatbag sniper."


Characters Present

Character Portrait: IG-136/59 Character Portrait: Davern Korosnos Character Portrait: Ati Jendrassi Character Portrait: Edar Xann Character Portrait: Rift Kilbaine Character Portrait: Koda'Rai
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"Gar lahm par ibic hibir, gar aalar pel," ( Are you ready pup, you seem soft)

Soft?! Ati bristled, setting her shoulders at the taller Mando with an invisible glare of challenge. Calling someone 'soft' was a good way to get in a quick fight on Mandalore. In a few years, with thicker skin and a more mature head, Ati may have brushed off the remark. But on her first round of galactic travel and with a mind to prove herself, the words stung her pride.

She may even have answered him in kind, regardless of her broken arm, if it weren't for the clipped electronic voice of the droid saying something that demanded an even more immediate portion of her attention.

"Statement: Well that's annoying..... I seam to be having an error. Clarification: All comms signal in this region has gone dead, rendering all guidance systems inoperable."

The female regarded 'Smiley' flatly for a long moment, "That could be a problem, droid. Does your master have enemies that could've followed you out here?"

As soon as the words are out, she considered a second, more likely, and less appealing scenario.

"Haar'chak." She growls the curse, "I only thought my headset was damaged in the crash. It's all too neat, isn't it? The ship suffers a power failure when there was no trouble anywhere else on the flight, bringing us down into an area that is now being jammed... I don't like what that means. Someone either anticipated survivors, or only just realized there -are- survivors, and we're being watched. Either way, they don't want us calling for help."

It sounded paranoid to her own ears, but it made too much sense; fitting the pieces of their circumstances together into a more complete whole.

"Take it off her shoulders, I can fight and haul this with ease, she on the other hand, she is still far to young for such impressive strength or finesse."

"Yeah, your not compensating for anything. No, I can go fine on my own. Unless you need to be guarded by the big, strong chick......"

The Trandoshan saves her from outright challenging Davern, and finally she shrugs her half of the harness off of her shoulder, allowing Zekk to do just as he said he'd do. His size really did make him the best suited to pull the tank, and she was mildly impressed that he'd volunteered to do it. Trandoshans usually weren't that level-headed when it came to demeaning themselves in front of 'lesser' mammalian species.


The night was bitterly cold, and the desert stretched forever in any direction they cared to look. Ati's Beskar'gam protected her better than those with any skin exposed to the biting sand, and most of her visor's visual components still functioned despite the minute cracks that'd starred the transparasteel. Because of that, she was usually the first to climb the next dune, watching for threats ahead of them on their trek across the dunes.

It hadn't left her mind that their circumstances might be fitting all too neatly into someone else's plan for them, and she didn't like being played from afar. So she kept her mouth shut and her thoughts to herself, even when Zekk lost his footing and sent the sled screaming down the slope of a dune, nearly colliding with several of the others.

The argument broke up quickly enough, and they didn't loose too much time, but eventually the wind and cold became too much, and in the relative shelter of a dune's valley, they all huddled around the tank for what shelter they could find. Ati declined the scraps that Rift handed around; it wouldn't add anything that her armor didn't already provide.

The next day was Hell. While her sealed armor had been fantastic in the night, during the day her lack of an environmental suite left her cooking right along with the rest of them. To remove her helmet would just expose her head to the sun, so she grunted and cursed and suffered in relative silence while the heat rolled off of the iron plates with enough heat to scorch, should she have been stupid enough to touch them with naked flesh.

She was going to smell -fantastic- after all of this, and made a mental note several times over to spend her next set of credits on any kind of in-armor atmosphere uprgrade.

And then Hell gets... Hell-ier? Ati had stayed back as Rift and Davern had gone up the next dune, arguing like children. The Deathwatch grated on her nerves at every turn, and she was itching for her arm to mend. Stars willing, she could find a medical droid in whatever settlement they hit first. Then she and that old man were going to have a prolonged talk.

But there are shouts, and blasterfire. Tusken. They must've come upon the wreck and seen their tracks. Her pistol wouldn't cut it. Reaching back, the rifle is heavy in her one-handed grip, and she steadies it against her hip. The assault weapon snaps, and heavy red bolts drill into the waves of roaring, savage scavengers.

The numbers press ever-closer, despite the casualties they absorb. A Raider falls to her shots, only to have its comrade leap over the body, too close to shoot again. Its Gaffi stick comes down hard onto her gun arm, but skips loudly, harmlessly, across the gray Mandalorian Iron. His momentum dedicated forward, Ati meets his wrapped forehead with the crown of her helmet, and the crack is even louder. The Tusken joins its fellows in the dirt.

With a screech, the assault is halted by whatever threat had spooked the Tusken Raiders sent crimson energy staining the sky.

"...I have a bad feeling about this."

And then they're all running, choosing to take their chances in the canyon rather than find out what was slaughtering the Tusken. As she clears her boots from desert dunes to hard-packed grit, Ati briefly regrets that she doesn't have the time to enjoy the few degrees difference in the shade. The twin paths look identical.

"Split up and double our chances to get away, or stay together and keep our firepower concentrated?"

Time was running out to decide, and Ati is already taking a few steps towards the left-hand path.