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Thread: Shadows of the Republic: The Initiate

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    Closed Thread Shadows of the Republic: The Initiate

    Well,” Master Yoda hummed, “A gift of the Force this is, it seems. In need we are of crystals for the younglings' training lightsabres. Come to us you did immediately after we were aware of the need.

    Master Yoda stayed silent for a few moments, as if pondering something. His expression soon cleared, and he fixed the padawan that stood before him with a piercing look.

    A test this shall be. Already attested to your abilities and temperament, Master Origin has. Quite certain he is that you soon will be ready to face the Trials. Decided, the Council has, to allow you to prove that. To Ilum you will go, to collect the crystals for your and the younglings' lightsabres.”

    He seemed to already know what the padawan would say to that, and raised a hand to forestall his reply. “Not alone will you travel. On an important investigation, Master Origin is; we will not call him off it for this. Escorted you will be, by a Knight not many years older than you. By nightfall you must leave.”

    Thank yoo for thee trust yoo place in me, Masters,” Tell Cho replied.

    Be wary you must,” Yoda chided gently, sensing Tell's confidence. Master Windu nodded in agreement.

    There are some dangerous creatures on Ilum, padawan. Do not become overconfident and lose focus.”

    Tell Cho bowed, and sensing that he should leave, turned and left the Council chamber.




    Taking their warnings to heart, the seventeen year old Gossam requested a lightsabre from Master Drallig (“You must return it, or you will be replacing it, Padawan,” he had said), and prepared himself for the mission. Only a few articles of clothing were packed, to leave room for the much more necessary ration packs that he and his escort would need while on Ilum.

    Then, when the sun began to set, he made his way to the Temple Hangars, and the courier ship that would take he and his escort to Ilum. There he saw the courier ship prepared and awaiting his arrival, with a tall cat-like Jedi speaking with Master Yoda. Both turned to greet him as he walked up.

    “On time you are. Good, good!” Yoda said, smiling. “Padawan Cho, Knight Drin Kizael this is. Your escort he will be while your mission you complete.”

    Tell Cho bowed respectfully. “I thank you for accompanying me on this mission, Knight Kizael,” he said carefully, trying not to let his accent make his words incomprehensible. “I am most grateful.”
    Last edited by Tell Cho; Sep 18th, 2009 at 12:16:56 AM.

  2. #2
    Drin Kizael
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    "Ilum?" the Jedi asked, hoping he heard his mentor wrong. Drin Kizael shifted his gaze from Master Moorja to Master Yoda, who was sitting comfortably in his personal chamber.

    Kizael stifled his kneejerk reaction. His people typically called any region with temperate, rolling grasslands home. In the comfort of their home world, Trianii even tended to live without need of clothes. Despite his best to appear neutral at the news that his destination would be an ice world in the Unknown Regions, Master Moorja smiled at him and nodded.

    "But Tell is not my padawan," he said quickly, bordering on protest.

    "In confidence he must grow," Yoda interjected. "Confidence tempered by wisdom. Soon, his trials he must face, as you passed yours not long ago."

    Moorja Dreeshan regarded his former apprentice. "He needs to feel what it's like to be out there on his own, Kizael. Even if it's just to trek through the snow and do some mining. It's an important job. And if you run into a gorgodon, that's what you're there for."

    "If help he requires, Hmmm," Yoda added. "Strong in the Force, is he. Aware of his potential, but also his limitations, he must become."

    Kizael bowed and turned to go.

    "Forget not," Yoda spoke up, drawing the attention of both Trianii towering over him. "Buy a parka, you should."

    Kizael bowed again and walked away with a chuckle.


    ***

    Tell Cho bowed respectfully. “I thank you for accompanying me on this mission, Knight Kizael. I am most grateful.”

    "So formal." the Knight commented, offering a polite, but curt bow. "Outside of Council meetings, my name is just Kizael."

    The two-hundred ten centimeter tall felinoid wore a green tunic with blue sleeves and beige shirt and pants under a brown traveling robe that almost matched his fur, save for the blonde of his jowls and eyes. He shifted the weight of his clothing pack and started to say more, but found himself cut off by the toot of an R2 mech rolling past and up the ramp of the ship.

    "I guess we're ready for take off. Shall we?"

  3. #3
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    Tell nodded to Kizael and turned back to regard the diminutive Grand Master of the Jedi Order. He smiled slightly, a feeling of contentment washing through him at the joyful glow in the centuries old Jedi Master's eyes. Tell Cho knew he could spend the rest of his life as a Jedi and be happier than anything else he could have done.

    Yoda smiled at the seventeen year old Gossam and said, “May the Force be with you, Padawan.”

    “And with you, Masterr Yo-da,” he replied. He walked up the ramp and into the courier ship. It was small, but larger than he'd expected for this mission; other than that small surprise, he was familiar with the make and model of the ship.

    “Kn...” he began to use the Trianii's title, but stopped himself short. It irked him slightly to be so informal with the elder Jedi, but he did not wish to cause any sort of awkwardness or discomfort to him.

    “Ki-zael,” he called, pitching his voice so that he could be heard above the warming hum of the sub-light engines while making his way to the cockpit. “I am a-board.”

  4. #4
    Drin Kizael
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    Kizael settled into the pilot's seat after running the pre-flight checks. Behind him, the bright green R2 droid rolled across the tiny cabin and secured itself into its dock, twittering in what he couldn't help but hear as annoyance. The Jedi glanced at his computer screen as text scrolled by.

    "I'm sure you did, but if you don't mind I like to check the controls of a ship that I'm flying for myself, especially on a 12 hour trip into the Unknown Regions."

    The astromech droned a reply, but no text appeared on the screen.

    Kizael muttered to himself softly, "I swear ever since Anakin brought that damned blue one here..."

    “Ki-zael, I am a-board.”

    Drin flipped a switch to raise the ramp. This was going to be a long trip for such a small ship. He shuddered at the thought of anyone trying it in the even smaller Couriers berthed in the Temple hangars. Thankfully he used his height to his advantage again, convincing the deck captain that they needed an upgrade for practical purposes. They'd have to take shifts in the sleeper cabin as it is.

    He looked over the shields and weapons again, with a tight exhale through his teeth. Two fixed-mounted cannons and a grade 1 shield gen. Of course they were going the opposite direction on the galactic plane from any pirate or Separatist activity.

    "Dee 9 are you sure that Thelman converter was reinstalled? I'm still getting that glitch on my--"

    The droid warbled and the readouts flickered for a second. "Ah. Thank you. Alright strap in."

    Moments later the courier ship lifted off the platform and angled skyward.
    Last edited by Drin Kizael; Sep 17th, 2009 at 03:49:42 PM.

  5. #5
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    Before entering the cockpit, he made sure to stow his bag and the other necessary items away in the proper places. He was especially careful with the box that held his nearly finished lightsabre. The hilt was longer than most, and it was designed to use a longer blade, so the crystals he needed would have to be larger and able to channel more energy.

    The vastness of space greeted Tell Cho as he entered, and he noticed that Kizael looked at home where he sat in the pilot's seat. They had not yet entered hyperspace. Before he could say anything though, the R2 unit whistled in annoyance at him.

    “Ex-cuse me,” he apologised, and the little droid made a rude noise and trundled past him to another part of the cockpit. He looked up to see Kizael giving him an amused look.

    “Izz dere any-thing I can doo too help?” he asked, sitting and making himself comfortable in the co-pilot's chair, amused at the droid himself.

  6. #6
    Drin Kizael
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    "At this point? No I think we're good. Maybe keep an eye on the plasma coil meters for me." Kizael said, gesturing to an array of LEDs across the console.

    A mechanical voice crackled over the speakers. "Jedi vessel Obroa Wing you are cleared for jump on vector 75.27.3-Gamma."

    The Trianii regarded his copilot with a casual glance. Even sitting he had to look down a little to make eye contact. Kizael idly wondered if their difference in physical stature was a factor in pairing him with Tell. There was certainly nothing wrong with confidence. Channeling the Force was impossible without strong faith in oneself. But Yoda had implied the young Gossam might need to be knocked down a peg, so to speak.

    "Alright Dee-9, stop fussing and lock yourself back in," Drin called over his shoulder as they cleared the last of Coruscant's orbital platforms and headed for open space. The droid complied, surprisingly without comment.

    "So," he said at length, "Been on many of these long jumps yet?"

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    (OOC: I'm tired of trying to figure out how to get his accent across. Think Davy Jones from Dead Man's Chest, and you'll be close enough.)


    “No,” Tell replied after a moment, his speech still careful but not as slow as it had been, and retained much of his accent. “Many jumps of six hours, but only one so long as this. Mast-er Origin and I mediated a dispute on Malastare two years ago. That journey took the better part of a week, with several jumps like this. So I have experience, but not much. And no experience flying such long jumps.”

    Kizael glanced questioningly at him, and Tell smiled slightly. “We were escorted by the Senator to the world on her ship.”

    He glanced at the readouts for the plasma coils, noting that while they seemed to be a bit hotter than was usual, it was still within acceptable boundaries for stable engine output. While he was correct in a sense, his calculations were based on newer craft with better coolant systems. But that thought did not occur to him then; he was more than competent at technical tasks, and felt sure in his judgement.

    “We are now out of the planet's gravity well,” he stated, fixing the restraints on the co-pilot's chair and making sure it was adjusted correctly.

  8. #8
    Drin Kizael
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    With the gentle push of a lever, the stars outside the Obroa Wing elongated to hundreds of silver needles crossing the viewport and the ship lurched into a tunnel of swirling light. The inertial dampeners made the sudden leap of thousands of kilometers feel like little more than a sharp bump on a land speeder.

    "Well don't go into a hibernation trance yet. The thing about traveling through the Core is that you can't get anywhere in a single jump." Drin leaned back in his seat. "The stars are so close together that getting anywhere is a series of minijumps. That's the real reason it takes so long. A good navigator can get you from Trian to Naboo faster than we can get to Corellia from here."

    R2-D9 unbolted the restraints that kept him fastened to the wall, whistling a reply as he rolled out to the engine compartment.

    Drin rolled his eyes. "Well maybe not faster than he could." He tapped a few keys on the navicomp, reading down the list that appeared on screen. "Only three for us. Twenty minutes to an hour each. Once we reach the Colonies, it's a straight shot on an uncharted hyperspace course that only the Jedi temple computers track. No one else bothers to."

    The Jedi turned to the Padawan, who was still surprisingly attentive. "So I take it you haven't had any pilot training. You strike me as a Counselor in waiting."

  9. #9
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    Indeed, Tell Cho listened attentively to Kizael's response and tried to make sure that he retained as much as he could. The mention of Corellia reminded him of certain Jedi he'd met, and their flair for independence for the sake of independence, which stuck him as particularly foolish. They merely wished to 'have their cake and eat it too'; or so he thought of it. But, knowing how undiplomatic such a stance was, Tell Cho remained quiet on that topic, and let his distracting thoughts... float away, as it were.

    "So I take it you haven't had any pilot training. You strike me as a Counselor in waiting."

    “It is like there is a string attached to my soul that tugs me down the path I must take,” Tell replied. “My temperament lends itself to the study of the Force more than others', it seems. But I do have some experience piloting, though with simple single pilot ships, and not for such extended periods.”

    He disconnected the restraints and regarded the scene of hyperspace with a thoughtful contentment, before turning to regard the much larger Jedi Knight. “I would actually like to ask you for some instruction on flying vessels such as this. It may yet prove useful in the future, I feel.”

  10. #10
    Drin Kizael
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    The Jedi spent the better part of the next hour going over the finer mechanics of deep space travel. Given any pilot experience at all, it wasn't a difficult transition. From an operations perspective, flying anything smaller than a freighter is more or less the same. Starships were simply just air speeders with really big thrusters if your only focus was operating it. Things didn't get complicated until you had tactical systems to deal with or had to adjust the math for pushing more than 100 tons through space.

    The Obroa Wing dropped back into realspace in a small system half a parsec from Ruan. Drin dropped the inertial dampeners down a notch and cut the stasis field, literally making the ships' speed feel faster.

    "This isn't showing off," Drin commented as the system's largest planet crept into view ten thousand kilometers ahead. "A few g-forces helps me gauge maneuvers like this better."

    "Man-euuvers?" Tell asked.

    "Yes. The next jump vector is way over there," Kizael replied, pointing forward and to port. "That would take us half a day and burn through a fuel rod in realspace, and I'd be too likely to overshoot a microjump that short. So we're going to use that planet's gravity to get us to there a lot faster."

    "A slingshot," Tell offered.

    "Ah so you did have some traditional schooling after all. I was starting to wonder."

    The planet lined up in front of them and began to grow in the viewport. "As I said, this isn't showing off. Honest. That's not the Jedi way." A half grin crept into his features. "But I have to confess, when I was younger, I found this quite fun."

    Drin angled the ship perpendicular to the horizon, dropping the sublight engines to minimal thrust and coasting into edge of the planet's gravity well. The Obroa wing skimmed around the planet in a blinding arc, building enough force to push the Jedi back into their seats, until Drin pulled the controls back and they rocketed off again into the vacuum.

    Twenty minutes later, the navicomputer chirped as the ship lined up with it's next jump coordinates and the stars again melted into hyperspace.

    The Jedi reviewed some of the ship's details a bit more. He thought he'd run out of things to say but the inquisitive Padawan kept prompting him for more. More than once, Kizael mused quietly to himself how fortunate he was that Master Moorjah took him out into the field so often during his apprenticeship.

    Soon they were back in realspace. Drin tapped a few keys, eased the controls in front of him back into a stationary position and gestured to the copilot's controls. "Okay this is the edge of the Colonies. Last jump then you can grab first shift in the bunk. Go ahead," he said casually.

    Tell Cho looked at him blankly.

    "Nothing fancy on this one. Just thirty-two degrees starboard and negative five degress zed. When the top bar on the navcomp is a solid five lights across, punch it." He leaned back in his seat.

    After a moment he glanced over. "Take your time."

  11. #11
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    The next hour was very enlightening to the Gossam Padawan. He knew the bare operations of single pilot ship, but actual deep space travel and use of the nav-computer beyond simply inputting the coordinates that he was told to input was something he'd never actually learned. And it would be an understatement to note that Tell Cho loved learning.

    So he bent his mind and attention to learning how to manipulate the controls of this ship to get them across vast distances in, literally, the blink of an eye. And whenever he didn't understand, or was lost, he asked questions. It was habit to him by now. For some time he'd been too timid to ask questions about things he didn't understand, as he didn't wish to be a bother to his teacher. Master Origin needed almost a complete year to drill that reaction out of his head and to ingrain the habit of inquisitiveness into his Padawan.

    Kizael explained to him what he was doing when they reverted, and it took Tell a moment to understand why Kizael had removed the stasis field. He'd immediately understood what Kizael was going to do, but he'd held his tongue until he comprehended the need to feel the g-forces.

    “A slingshot,” he offered, comprehension coming to him. The stasis field was like having one eye covered. It didn't remove sight, but it hindered depth perception. Removing it and allowing oneself to be subjected to the forces involved allowed for a clearer estimate of the speed and momentum of the craft. Of course there were gauges to indicate such things, but Tell understood that some enjoyed flying more through instinct and experience than through process and trust in gauges.

    "Ah, so you did have some traditional schooling after all. I was starting to wonder."

    And then they were off once more. He was glad, as the sensation of being forced into his seat by the force of gravity of the planet 'beneath' them was something that he was distinctly uncomfortable with. He would admit that there was an enjoyable thrill to it, however. He asked a few more questions about the slingshot manoeuvre, wondering about different speeds and the difficulty of estimating the gravitational pull of different planets. Time passed quickly in this manner, and soon they were on the edge of the Colonies, and preparing for the final stretch to Ilum.

    "Okay this is the edge of the Colonies. Last jump then you can grab first shift in the bunk. Go ahead.”

    Tell glanced blankly at the Knight.

    "Nothing fancy on this one. Just thirty-two degrees starboard and negative five degrees zed. When the top bar on the nav-comp is a solid five lights across, punch it."

    Tell nodded slightly, and began to mentally go over the processes that he had recognized in space-flight. It was much easier than he had expected, especially since he was constantly funnelling his nervousness into the Force, allowing himself to focus on the task at hand and not his fear of failure.

    Soon enough, the bar was five lights across and Tell pushed the lever controlling the hyperdrive forward, the view outside once more streaming into points of light until they had completely entered hyperspace.

    “Not bad,” Kizael said, looking at him with a distinctly happy expression on his face. Tell gave an uncharacteristic smile. “A bit more practice needed on the timing, but not bad at all.”

    Kizael shifted in his seat. “You must be tired, Tell,” he said. “Go on, hit the bunk, and I'll wake you when my shift is up.”

    Tell nodded as he stood. “Thank you.”

    He'd almost reached the bunk when the ship shuddered, and the distinct sound of an explosion sent more tremors throughout the ship. Accompanying it was the squeal of the R2 unit that had been so rude to him in the cockpit.

    It must have been in the back... in the engine compartment. He rushed into the smoky room and saw the droid laying on the floor, its chassis looking slightly burned and blackened. His eyes swept the small compartment and began to note the damage.

    “Tell? Tell?!” He heard Kizael calling out. He absently flicked the switch to the comm.

    “Kizael,” he said. “I am uninjured. The astromech droid looks in need of some new parts, but still seems functional. I am unsure what happened; I shall check to see what damages we have incurred and what can be done.”

  12. #12
    Drin Kizael
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    As Tell left the cockpit, Kizael leaned back and closed his eyes with a cleansing breath. He was far more fatigued than he should be, and needed a drink for his dry throat after all that talking. He'd decided long ago that he wasn't cut out to be a parent, whether active in the Jedi Order or not. Nothing at all against the reserved and amazingly polite Gossam, but he now amended that to include that he wasn't wired to be a teacher either. There'd be no padawn in his future.

    Drin's eyes jerked open as the sound of an explosion and the shriek of an R2 unit echoed in his mind. He shifted his gaze abruptly around the console. Outside, the light show of hyperspace danced past the viewport. The hum of the engines continued its steady rhythm across the hull. The Jedi quickly realized what had just happened and unlocked the pilot controls.

    Suddenly the ship lurched forward. An explosion and piercing wail of R2-D9 rang in his ears, but he was too focused on holding the ship steady. The translucent tunnel outside melted before his eyes into erratically swirling stars. Somewhere in the mix he became aware of a power surge erupting in a flash of sparks.

    His arms locked with tension as adrenaline washed over him, but quickly faded as he fought to channel his panic through the Force. Soon the wild traces of light settled into pinpoints against empty space. Kizael eased his grip, letting out a measured sigh. Then he smelled the smoke.

    He started to get up out of his seat, but stopped short when he saw the sleeper cabin's door open down the ship's single corridor. There was no one inside. Kizael whirled back around and jabbed the comlink controls.

    "Tell? TELL!?"

    “Kizael,” the electronically filtered voice finally replied. “I am uninjured. The astromech droid looks in need of some new parts, but still seems functional. I am unsure what happened; I shall check to see what damages we have incurred and what can be done.”

    Drin took a careful look over the console with new eyes. They had partial sensors, but no external comlink. He had no way of knowing the temperature of the plasma coil or the state of the reactor, but the rad counter was floating right where it should be and the hull hadn't melted, so he took one problem off his mind. Maneuvering thrusters were online, but the sublight engine was anybody's guess.

    The navicomputer showed no life except a whiff of ozone. And if the sensors really were working, there wasn't a celestial body within a light year.

    Kizael frowned. He'd have to worry about that later. He tapped the comlink again. "I'll be right there."

  13. #13
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    Tell heard the Trianii's reply to his update, but said nothing as he set the astromech droid aright.

    “There,” he said. “How are your damages?”

    The droid's sensory light flickered on and the domed top swivelled around a few times, almost like a creature rolling its shoulders to check for pain and bruising. After that it seemed to gingerly move about, testing its legs for any damages. It gave a relieved sounding whistle after this, which Tell chose to receive as a sign that it would be all right. With that done, he turned his attention to the sparking hyperdrive engine that sat in front of him and the droid.

    Gingerly, Tell removed a panel and began inspecting the alluvial damper.

    ...There is some scarring, but nothing to show that this caused the malfunction, he thought to himself as soon as he made sense of the odd configuration. It was an older model. The smoke had lessened now, but its colour and the heat emanating from the area where it was pouring out led him to believe that something had gone wrong with the...

    “The transpacitor,” he murmured. Next would be the plasma coils, if he could find them on this ship. Whatever the damage was, it couldn't have been too bad, considering that the shielding had held and the Obroa Wing was now not a jumble of particles in hyperspace.

  14. #14
    Drin Kizael
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    Drin walked up to a panel outside the engine compartment and cranked up the air scrubbers. Seconds later, the last of the smoke dissipated with a whoosh of recycled air piped in.

    He paused at the sight of the blasted out hyperdrive generator. "I told you that thelman converter was still glitching," he said, regarding R2-D9 flatly.

    The astromech twittered a little too loudly in defensive tones. "How can you say it's not your fault? Your sole function in life is to maintain the ship you're assigned to. You just don't take someone at their word that they fixed it for you."

    The Jedi sighed at the realization that he was arguing with a droid. "Besides, I wasn't blaming you." Though if this is reflective of the droid's usual performance, he added silently, he probably has this conversation a lot. "Take a look outside to see if the damage extends to the field emitters." Dee-9 whistled and rolled out toward the airlock.

    Right now Kizael was more concerned with the ripple effect that the explosion caused on the ship's systems -- like life support. Whatever happened, happened, and did not change their current reality.

    He glanced at Padawn Cho, who was busy examining the hyperdrive motivator with the critical eye of an engineer. He had taken note of the Gossam's academic approach to understanding the Force earlier. Seeing his interest now in the inner workings of the ship, after learning that he had little practical experience flying one lent weight to Kizael's suspicion that the young sentient leaned toward the Unifying Force school of Jedi philosphy.

    No wonder Yoda liked him. The tiny Master had a tendency to favor those who were more attuned to the broader and esoteric sides of the Force. He pushed that line of thought aside for now and refocused on the ship's self diagnostic.

    Several minutes later, the sound of the airlock door announced the return of R2-D9, who announced that all systems accessible from the hull were in optimal parameters.

    "Well you two have things well in hand back here. I'm going to assess the damage that the power surge had on navigation and control. Then hopefully we can figure out where we are."

  15. #15
    Drin Kizael
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    The hours crawled by painfully slow. The damage to the hyperdrive control system was extensive, requiring the focus of all three passengers doing what they could to bring the ship back to life. R2-D9 brought up the long range sensors first at Kizael's insistence.

    Toward the end of the repair work, the big Trianii left the crowded engine compartment for the cockpit. He sat in the pilot's seat for several long stretches, not so much studying the star charts generated by the rewired navicomputer as just staring at them.

    At one point he instructed everyone to stop what they were doing and step away from the generator. Once clear, he guided the ship into a new vector and fired a burst from the sublight engines, launching the ship into a new orbit.

    At long last R2-D9 trundled down the corridor, reporting that the engines were as functional as they were going to be. The part that the astromech left unspoken was that the hyperdrive motivator was shredded beyond repair in the blast. He did feel it worth mentioning that highest they could get the core's field integrity to was sixty-three percent and that comlinks were capable of local transmissions only. No signals farther than a solar system would be picked up any time this year.

    Upon scanning the star chart, the droid followed up with a curt reply. Kizael glanced at the translation on the front console, though he already knew what it would say.

    "Yes. I know Brentaal is ten parsecs away. Have you looked at what's between us on the nav chart?"

    The droid started to reply, but cut himself short with a long, out a drawn out tone.

    "Exactly. It may as well be across the galaxy." At that, the droid began to launch into a panicky string of beeps and whistles, drawing Tell Cho to the cockpit.

    "The little one could use some meditation training," Kizael mused to the padawan with a wry smirk.

    "Dee-9," he urged. The droid grew silent. Kizael traced a finger along a thin white line on the star chart, a tiny but stable hyperlane mere light hours from the position. R2-D9 twittered happily and pivoted out back to mind the engines.

    Thanks to the course change Drin had made hours earlier, they were moving toward it, though it would take the better part of a day to reach it. From there, for Tell's benefit since the droid had left, he traced the arc into a brighter red line, and from there around a path through the Core to the first planet that came closest to crossing its path.

    "Rendili? But we cannot jump to hyperspace. Why not just find the closest system?"

    "Even in the Core, no two inhabited star systems are closer than four or five parsecs apart. Out here, without long range coms, we wouldn't come within civilization for at least, oh twenty years on sublight propulsion."

    "So how are we...?" Tell's voice trailed off. If not for a decade of Jedi training, he might have heard worry creep into his tone.

    "The same way Qui-Gon Jinn and Obi-Wan Kenobi got Senator Amidalla across 5,000 parsecs from Naboo to Tatooine without hyperdrive," Kizael replied as he turned to monitor the console.

    "In space, distance is irrelavant. Hyperspace binds this galaxy together as surely as the Force itself. The motivator can't hold enough power to jump out of realspace, but we can rig the horizontal booster to feed enough power to the drive to form a null quantum field strong enough to phase between dimensions."

    Kizael regarded Tell, who was trying to absorb the situation. R2 began rattling off a more technical explanation, but Drin cut him off. "At that point we would be not unlike a sailboat on Mon Cal waters, at the mercy of solar winds and gravitational forces that form that path through the stars."

    "But that," he added sharply, tapping the star chart, "is the Hydian Way. One of the largest and most stable routes in this galaxy. If we can stay on course, we'll be across the Core to Rindilli inside two or three days. Then we can contact the Temple."

    Tell's eyes shifted unconsciously toward a life support systems panel.

    "Let me get us to this first nexus, then I'll wake you."

  16. #16
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    Tell hesitated, as if he were going to argue with Kizael about that, but finally nodded once in acquiescence. This mission was getting complicated, but he was glad that the Knight was with him; it was likely that without the Trianii, Tell would have been lost.

    His feet thumped quietly along the deck, and he focussed on the sounds, letting them take his attention of the course of events and where they were leading. As it was, he doubted he would be getting much sleep. However, now seemed a particularly good time to meditate and calm himself, so he could listen to the Force.

    Inside the small room, Tell saw nothing but an equally small bunk and a small amount of floor space. Letting the small amount of frustration he was feeling trickle into the Force, the Gossam sat down on the bunk and closed his eyes, searching out the connection that would hopefully reveal to him where this all was headed.

    An indeterminable amount of time later, Tell opened his eyes. The Force hadn't been completely clear, as though a fog or a mist, though a light one, were steadily building up. However, he did get the clear impression that the Force was with them and leading them to some particular end. Feeling less fatigued than before, but not particularly rested, he stood and made his way to show, in some small part, his gratitude to Kizael.

    “You need to sleep. The faster I learn how to steer us true, the faster you can rest,” he said, entering the cockpit determinedly.
    Last edited by Tell Cho; Sep 30th, 2009 at 09:46:26 AM.

  17. #17
    Drin Kizael
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    The journey had been as quiet and uneventful as one would expect traveling through an endless void, light years away from civilization. The view was nowhere as spectacular without the usual hyperspace light show racing by, though they did have a nice view of the Drasi Nebula lazily creeping across the top of the viewport, visible to the naked eye as they traced an orbit only four parsecs away.

    “You need to sleep," Kizael heard from behind him. The Jedi turned in his seat, with a curious eye. "The faster I learn how to steer us true, the faster you can rest.” He regarded the Padawan, approaching like a Gossam on a mission.

    Guiding the ship between nexus points wasn't terribly complicated. Kizael compared the mechanics to driving a sand skimmer, settling on an analogy he figured a saurian could best relate to. He pointed out the key instruments, most notably the navicomp chart and the null quantum field integrity, which kept them in synch with the hyperlane.

    "I was off a bit in my calculations," Kizael confessed eventually. "This flight will take just shy of 3 weeks." He paused a moment to let that sink in. "The good news is because we disabled the stasis field to conserve power, at this speed the trip will only feel like 3 days."

    "The first thing we'll need to do is get a message to Coruscant to call off the search parties," he added. "Doubtless we'll have at least a few people worried, but rest assured they know we're alive. The Force would have told our respective Masters otherwise."

    Kizael smirked and stood up, patting Tell on the shoulder. "When the chart shows us within a light year of the Hydian Way, wake me."

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    As Kizael made his way to the bunk, Tell Cho found himself somewhat mired in his thoughts. He knew quite clearly that he'd never be an excellent pilot. That required something close to talent and desire, something that Tell did not have very much of before, and only to a slightly larger degree now.

    Pulling himself from his thoughts enough to keep an eye on the different instruments that needed to be watched, he leaned back in the seat and regarded the view from the cockpit in silence.



    It seemed like an eternity had passed while waiting for the distance to disappear between them and galactic civilization. Finally, the imaginary point was crossed on the navicomp chart; Tell stood and made his way to the bunk.

    “Kizael,” he announced, “We are one light year from the Hydian Way.”

  19. #19
    Drin Kizael
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    Kizael's eyes opened at the sound of Tell's voice. He felt like he'd barely slept, an ironic notion given that the ship had been traveling through space for several days at least. Time dilation was a tricky concept to wrap one's mind around, one that sentients haven't had to worry about for some twenty thousand years of deep space travel.

    The Trianii returned to the pilots seat to perform the surprisingly anti-climactic maneuver of switching hyperlanes on a nexus. As simple a process as it was to follow the course mapped by the navicomp, though, Kizael felt better safe than sorry with an inexperienced pilot. The droid had more pressing matters to attend to, as well.

    And so it went for an amount of time that neither Jedi cared to think about. They took shifts at the console. Outside of piloting, there was very literally nothing to do in the ship's only three other compartments, the sleeper, the engine room, and the storage bay.

    Kizael shared stories of his homeworld, Trian, on the far end of the galaxy in a small sector beyond the borders of the Corporate Sector Authority. He talked about his first space flight when he was a cub with Master Moorja Dreeshan, the only other Trianii Jedi known to either of them.

    In the course of conversation, Kizael mentioned he possessed the rare talent of energy absorption, similar though not quite as powerful as Neeja Halcyon's gift. That common ability sparked their long friendship, and inspired Kizael to build a silver lightsabre, one of many unconventional choices he'd made in his time with the Order.

    The beeping of the navicomp almost took the Jedi by surprise. R2-D9 confirmed that they were, indeed, on approach to the Rendili system.

    "At last," Kizael sighed as he rose from the sleeper cabin bunk to return to the cockpit.

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    Tell Cho was not a completely silent participant in their conversations. He spoke of how he'd come into the Jedi Temple; how after helping a Gossam member of the Commerce Guild, Knight Origin been invited to their cave to see their nest. Knight Origin had sensed the Force potential Tell had within his particular egg, and had bargained with the Gossam parents to pay off what they “owed” the Jedi by allowing their nestling to be trained as a Jedi.

    He also spoke of how it had been difficult for him to pick up Galactic Basic, and so Master Origin and his teachers had tried to find someone with an accent that could be duplicated by the saurian, eventually finding a man with a thick accent that complemented Cho's vocal abilities well. Tell was smiling as he recounted how no one could understand either of them for the next month due to the accents, and the many misunderstandings and small pranks that had been pulled with it until he had finally managed to work himself into an understandable mode of speech.

    The console beeped, bringing Tell from his half-meditative and half active state, and Kizael was returning to the cockpit. The reversion of power from the drive went smoothly, and they slowed down. Tell did surprisingly well for himself in this, as it seemed that he absorbed the processes of “sailing” far more easily than actually piloting through hyperspace.

    Looking over the communications console, he frowned slightly.

    “We are receiving a weak signal from just outside the Rendili system. Only audio as well.”

    He strengthened the signal as well as he could, and played it.

    ...overcome. Several crew members with blasters have taken the ship, and some pirates who must have stowed away. I don't know how long I can hide before they find me. Please, help us. Whoever's out there, please, help us.”

    The audio message shifted into static once more punctuated by speech that was only barely audible and indecipherable. Then it cleared and they heard the plea for help and the little information that wasn't very informative.

    “It's looped,” Tell surmised. “I am tracking the signal now.”

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