Captain's Log, Stardate 88059.4: The Ra-Cailum has safely arrived back home in our universe after reopening a permanent rift at Mandalore.
One would think we would get rest after this, but Admiral Tuvok has requested that the Ra-Cailum be sent to the Delta Quadrant to assist in Operation Delta Rising over a world called Kobali Prime.
Is it wrong to have racist feelings about these people, because I have the urge to shove them all through a tritanium wall.
Ron was sickened by the Kobali.
And so were the Mandalorians that he was transporting to their world.
The dead should be left to rest, not to be taken and turned into what were more or less zombies.
With the Borg, there was a chance of freedom from the collective; a chance to be yourself again.
With the Kobali… you were doomed to be one forever. And Ron hated it, even as he walked to the transporter room with Jaden. "Do I have to make sure your people don't shoot those bastards on principle?"
"If it weren't for the fact it would cause a diplomatic incident, I'd be asking my father to just glass the Kobali's worlds with nukes and turbolasers," Jaden said. "As much as bringing loved ones back to life appeals to me… the way the Kobali do it is an abomination if there ever has been one."
"The only REASON I'm even bothering with this alliance is because I'm not a member of the Federation Council." Both men entered the transporter room, where two people were waiting to hand them their weapons. Ron took his compression rifle and slung it over his shoulder. "There's a war going on down there, and I'm starting to like the opposition more than the Kobali. We're going down there because of this damned alliance."
The transporter activated, and both men left the ship.
A semi-complete ball hung in orbit of the planet, surrounded by Imperial destroyers of all kinds: Imperial, Victory, Venator, Secutor, and Gladiator, just to name a few. Using the technology taken from the remains of the Gagarin, the Imperials had advanced their technological base forward by thirty years. Finally they were at the same level of technology as the Federation, and no longer would they be bullied by them simply due to their technological superiority.
On the Imperial I-class Star Destroyer 'ISD Devastator', the new leader of the Galactic Empire stood on the bridge, looking out the front view of the Star Destroyer with the perfect view of both Geonosis below, and the prototype of the Death Star being constructed above. They were only remaining at Geonosis to gather necessary materials for construction before they relocate the prototype to the secret Maw installation being set up to continue their research and development of the imperial superweapon. This colossal battlemoon had to be kept secret from the universe for as long as possible.
As several of the new TIE-series fighters and bombers flew by, Vader contemplated the events of the recent years. It was not difficult to win the public support after Palpatine's 'Second Assassination attempt' by the Jedi, since Palpatine had already arranged several documents announcing Vader as his second-in-command. Now with him dead, that made Vader the overall leader of the Galactic Empire. While he left the minor, insignificant issues to be dealt with the new Imperial Senate, he had a hand in all major decisions within the Empire.
The Clone Wars were over… technically speaking. While the vast majority of the Droid Armies were deactivated, General Grievous had apparently dishooked multiple droid armies from the system, and took full command over dozens of CIS Fleets and Armies, as his forces waltzed into Hutt Space and surrounding systems, and overran the Hutt Cartel's control of the planets, thus inadvertently putting the entirety of those living within Hutt Space in debt to the Separatists for freeing them from the control of the crime syndicate.
Due to the fact that the Empire was still in the process of being built, recovering from the devastation of the clone wars, a cease-fire was agreed between the Separatists within Hutt Space, and the Galactic Empire, giving the Empire the chance to recover from the war. After all, it was only Hutt Space - if Grievous and his Droid Armies could keep that cesspool of scum and villainy pacified, more power to them.
While the CIS was not an issue, Vader's immediate concern was within Mandalorian Space. The Mandalorians were able to gain the support and resources from most of the Council of Neutral Systems during the clone wars, and the alliance with most of these star systems - such as Taris - were still allied with the Mandalorians, who represented their new military and industrial might. Even Dathomir was under their protection now.
Normally Vader would demand for an invasion, but he was no fool. The Empire was still recovering from the war, and the Mandalorian Union was not only allied with the Federation of Planets, but they were strongly tied into the Klingon Empire, who have been helping design and produce dozens of new vessels, weapons and the like to protect Mandalorian Space from Imperial aggression. It would be suicidal to risk opening a new war with not just the Mandalorians, but also two galactic powers from another universe, AND risk having the CIS break the cease-fire in the midst of all of this, forcing the Empire into a war on two fronts.
He had read about Human history on the Federation's capital of Earth, and how a leader of a nation called Nazi Germany made that same mistake, dividing his armies between the allies to the west and the soviets from the east. Vader would not dare make that same mistake.
There WERE problems, however: they still couldn't use both shield types at once for very long, and reverse engineering their deflector shields was difficult. Eventually, the engineers gave up before focusing on the deflector dish.
They discovered that a few modifications to the Death Star's superlaser could easily open a rift in space-time, and it could never be closed. As such, the Death Star was being moved near Umbra, to open a rift into the only area of the Milky Way Starfleet could not reach: the Delta Quadrant.
They could make allies, expand the Empire's influence.
And the Chiss commander would be of great use there.
Umbra - 3rd Attack Fleet
Kendal Ozzel stood on the bridge of the ISD Reprisal, watching over his task force. The Reprisal was part of a seven-ship flight of destroyers: four Clone War-fresh Venators, a pair of newly upgraded Victory II-Class destroyers and the Imperial-Class Reprisal herself. The Strikefast and the Crusader were repaired from fighting the Ra-Cailum, and now the Death Star would be arriving soon to get them into the Delta Quadrant.
And if the man performed well, they might promote him to Admiral.
The massive form of the semi-complete station (most of the inner workings were exposed, but advances in shielding allowed them to at least MOVE the damned station) emerged from hyperspace, the concave dish finished enough to fire the superlaser.
"Sir, DS-OBS-1 is requesting if we are ready to begin our mission."
"Inform them the attack fleet is prepared to enter the Delta Quadrant." Ozzel informed, "We are ready to introduce the Galactic Empire to a new universe."
The massive station's dish lit up at six points before firing six green beams into a single point, prior to a single pulse being fired 50000 kilometers from the station, impacting a 'hidden' point in space. A red-green void appeared at that point, just big enough to fit one of the Victory-Is. "DS-1 is recharging. 20 seconds to second firing!"
Five minutes and 15 more pulses later, the rift was now large enough to allow passage for even the largest planned Imperial capital ship.
"This is Captain Ozzel! All ships… ADVANCE!"
Kazon Order space
[BGM: Star Wars Episode V OST 'The Asteroid Field']
Five Kazon Predator-class Cruisers approached the odd annomally which appeared just outside their boarders, the massive swirling vortex. However just as they began to approach, dozens of Dagger-shaped warships were practically spit out of the vortex.
"This is Captain Kendal Ozzel of the Imperial Star Destroyer Reprisal!" A booming voice shouted across the comms. "This sector is now the territory of the Galactic Empire! Lower your shields, relinquish command of your vessels and submit to the Empire, failure to comply will result in your immediate destruction! This is your only warning!"
"This is First Maje Sessen of the Kazon-Nistrim! We will not bow to you, as we did not bow to the Voyager!"
The daggers launched a swarm of small H-shaped fighters, then opened fire on the Kazon craft, slowly pecking away at their shields. One raider attempted a kamikaze run on the largest ship, but torpedoes from smaller bombers disabled the ship's engines, leaving it adrift as the Strikefast and the Crusader engaged the carriers.
The two small vessels circled the Kazon warship, and aided by their TIEs and whatever Clone War fighters they had left, the ship was disabled.
"Prepare to be boarded, Kazon scum!" Ozzel announced, as TIE boarding craft were launched, making a beeline towards the disabled Kazon vessel. "To all other ships, continue the advance! Teach the Kazon what happens to those who oppose the Empire!"
The Reprisal hung back as it activated its tractor beams, luring the Kazon ship closer as the boarding craft attached. Meanwhile the rest of the Imperial attack force pushed forwards towards the nearest Kazon planet, which was already beginning to scramble defenses against this new enemy.
Not that it would do them much good.
The Empire had come. And it was never going to leave.
Sessen groaned as the white-armored men dragged him before someone. It had been five days, and he had been beaten, electrocuted, poisoned - you get the idea, right? Tortured.
The son of Culleh and Seska looked up into the face of the conqueror. Black as night, wearing full armor with a helmet that intimidated him.
"Greetings, Maje Sessen of the Nistrim. I am Darth Vader, leader of the Galactic Empire."
"The Federation shows its' true colors at last."
"The United Federation of Planets is not related to the Empire. And you will learn."
The Cardassian-Kazon hybrid was lifted off the ground… without anyone touching him as he choked. In his field of vision were other Kazon Majes of the Hobii, the Oglamar, the Halik and the Mostral. All wore fearful expressions on their faces. "I command the power of the Force. You are nothing to that. As you resisted, Sessen, you will suffer the fate of all the enemies of the Empire."
Sessen's head then snapped upwards at a 100-degree angle. This broke his neck, killing the Maje of the Nistrim.
"Serve the Empire, and you will be rewarded. Fail… and you will die."
The Majes all bowed before the Dark Lord, swearing fealty to him.
"The stench is overwhelming."
Sonja glanced at her CO, who was glowering at everything in the Kobali city.
"Of the reanimated dead."
"Preaching to the choir…" Jaden said, as he kept his helmet on. "Nothing here feels right… I just can't stop thinking about the fact everyone around us are basically zombies."
"At the very least they're not mindless zombies," Sonja said. "They don't exist."
"Yes they do," Jaden said, causing Sonja and the others to blink as they looked at him.
"…wait, what?" Sonja asked.
"Ever heard of Odacer-Faustin?" he asked. "Quick tip: Never go there. Me and my sister got stranded there, took refuge at an old abandoned Sith Academy from the Great Galactic Wars. The place is overrun with - and I shit you not - flesh eating, skin decaying, mindless zombies just like the ones from those video games you people from Earth had during the 21st century." He then smirked slightly. "Hah, for once we get to surprise Starfleet with what we've got, not the other way around."
"Voyager to Pinkerton."
Ron tapped his commbadge. "Yes, Admiral?"
"We are picking up distress calls from a Malon vessel. Your vessel is perfectly suited to dealing with the situation."
"Understood, Admiral. I'll be back on board in a minute. THANK YOU."
Ron grinned nervously. "Sorry. I have to leave you here with the mindful zombies," he said. "Your dad's orders. The Vaadwaur want this planet, and your job is to make sure they don't get it."
"With the fleet we've got overhead, they wouldn't try anything-" Jaden began to say, before an explosion in the distance echoed across the city, as they turned around to see a pillar of smoke arise from the center of the city near the mountains. "…goddamn you irony…" He turned his Jetpack on as he flew up into the skies, making a beeline towards the smoke.
A Vaadwaur strike team entered the base, shooting everything that wasn't Vaadwaur that got in their way.
Unfortunately, as they advanced further into the base… a certain individual wearing Mandalorian Shock Trooper armor stood before them, wielding dual WESTAR-34 pistols. "Alright Vaadwaur," Jaden said, as he calmly walked forward, twirling the pistols around in his hands. "I can understand why you don't like these guys - hell, they're a race of literal zombies, after all, but unfortunately for you, my mission is to keep these undead creeps alive… so I'm gonna take out all of my frustration out on you."
He proceeded to open fire on the Vaadwaur soldiers, as they fell victim to the Mandalorian's assault. They returned fire, but the few shots that hit were only met by his personal energy shield. One Vaadwaur attempted to charge at him with a knife, but Jaden dropped one of his pistols and flung out his Darksaber sword and sliced the Vaadwaur's head clean off.
An explosion was felt deeper inside the base, and Jaden groaned in annoyance. The shit never ends.
More assault teams were inside the base, making their way to the core of the facility. Jaden shot as many as he could before using the darksaber to hack the rest into dismembered corpses. He was ready to head back when he peered into the open security door. He saw a stasis tube in the center of a large chamber filled wall-to-wall with tubes. All full of Vaadwaur, Some in the process of converting into Kobali.
'No wonder the Vaadwaur hate these guys…' Jaden thought as he inspected the tubes, seeing the people inside. 'If I found out someone I knew was being turned into a Zombie I would - wait, the fuck?!'
As Jaden was inspecting the tubes, one tube had a set he didn't expect. A human woman.
Not just any human: Padme Amidala.
Either the Kobali were suicidal, or they just didn't CARE.
"…Oh that fucking TEARS it!" He shouted as he activated the Comms. "Takeo to all Shock Troops! Clear this place of Vaadwaur, then secure the stasis room! I don't want a damn thing getting in here, either Vaadwaur OR Kobali! I'm contacting Pinkerton!"
The Mandalorian rushed to a console that the Kobali had installed and automatically typed in the Ra-Cailum's contact frequency.
"Whoever the hell this is can… wait. Oh, Jaden. What the hell's going on? I've got issues on my end, over here; there's a freaking—"
"THEY HAVE PADME'S BODY!"
"Ron, I am looking at Padme's body in stasis RIGHT NOW!" Jaden shouted, "The Kobali have Padme, and they're gonna do that bullshit where they bring her back to life as a goddamned Kobali Zombie! I know we don't want to start an incident here, but this shit is GOING TO FAR!"
"…And you just gave the Imperials an excuse."
"This channel isn't secure and I'm tap-dancing with an Imperial-Class destroyer and two Venators!"
The idea of the Empire having found a way into Ron's universe was a concern… however an idea hit Jaden's head before he smirked. "Unsecured, huh?" he asked. "Oh hey Vader! Since I know you'll probably listen to this… Fuck the Kobali for us, would you please? Ron hates them, I hate them… but you get free reign to fuck them all to oblivion and back as far as I'm concerned. And once my dad finds out about this, he'll probably just let you glass the planet."
"I'm pulling back! Hope and pray, kid!"
Tuvok glared at Jaden, who looked unrepentant. "You willingly informed the Imperial Navy of this. If Captain Pinkerton were not willing to vouch for you, I would have you pressed with charges of treason under the Khitomer and Coruscant Accords. I am also tempted to charge him. You have good friends in high places, Commander."
"The are trying to bring Padme from the dead as a ZOMBIE," Jaden said. "Usually, I can be very tolerant of other cultures… but what they're doing is nothing short of an abomination! They won't just bring her to life, they're gonna convert her into one of them, and she probably won't even remember her life as a senator! As much as bringing the dead back to life appeals to me and many others, this is NOT the way to do it!"
Tuvok had to deal with that argument earlier, as well… from the Klingons.
And when a race that doesn't give two flying fucks about the bodies of their dead rants about it, you KNOW you have a problem.
"This would not have happened if Captain Pinkerton did not bury her in space."
"Do NOT redirect blame to him, Admiral! All he did was try to honor her and make sure she rested in peace!"
And logic once again kicked the Vulcan's ass.
"Your point is true. However, the captain would be the first to point out that our mission is to defend this world. We do not have to like this mission to carry it out." and Jaden knew Ron well enough to know he WOULD say that.
"Well, our mission is to defend them from the Vaadwaur, not the Imperials," Jaden said. "And the last thing we want is to ignite a war with the Imperials. So our options is to just let them have Kobali space - which really isn't that tactically important to anyone - or stay and fight, and possibly start a war with the Galactic Empire. And before you say anything about diplomatic solutions… this is the empire, lead by Darth Vader we are talking about."
"I will consult with Starfleet Command. If they give the order to retreat from Kobali Prime, then I will follow it to the best of my ability. Until then, we will hold this planet."
ISD Chimaera - Kazon-Relora space
Vader stood on the bridge of the Chimaera, continuing to scare the living shit out of everyone on board just by BEING there.
"Sir, transmission from the Reprisal. You will want to see it."
Vader turned to face the comms officer before heading for the aft area of the command deck.
The image of now-Admiral Ozzel (promoted by Tarkin, against Vader's private wishes) appeared on the holoemitter, looking sharp and proper.
Vader wanted to KILL the fool.
"My Lord, we've intercepted a transmission from a Federation starship. The Ra-cailum." "I know that vessel, Admiral. What about it?"
"You… will want to hear this, milord."
The recording began to play. "Whoever the hell this is can… wait. Oh, Jaden. What the hell's going on? I've got issues on my end, over here; there's a freaking—"
"THEY HAVE PADME'S BODY!"
"Ron, I am looking at Padme's body in stasis RIGHT NOW!" Jaden shouted, "The Kobali have Padme, and they're gonna do that bullshit where they bring her back to life as a goddamned Kobali Zombie! I know we don't want to start an incident here, but this shit is GOING TO FAR!"
Vader didn't pay attention to Ozzel's ranting about the 'treatment of an asteamed senator's body' and the 'lack of respect'.
He wanted vengeance. And by the Force, he was going to GET it.
"Unsecured, huh?" Jaden said on the comm, "Oh hey Vader! Since I know you'll probably listen to this… Fuck the Kobali for us, would you please? Ron hates them, I hate them… but you get free reign to fuck them all to oblivion and back as far as I'm concerned. And once my dad finds out about this, he'll probably just let you glass the planet."
"…Admiral Ozzel, prepare your fleet." Vader growled. "If they want us to destroy the Kobali… we shall be more than happy to comply."
"Most of our forces have been ordered to pull back to Kobali prime for staging reasons. Other then the Dyson sphere, this is our primary base of operations."
Everyone avoided looking at Ron, as his ship was the flagship of the SCE. He could build a starbase for the Alliance easy.
He was just too busy to do so.
"The Imperials WILL be coming for this planet, Admiral." Ron said. "I say let them. Starfleet regulations are VERY clear on the Federation's policy of interfering with two non-member's affairs."
Jaden resisted smirking at Ron's use of Federation law to justify them NOT defending the Kobali.
Tuvok, however, was having none of it. "Unless the Imperials avoid directly engaging a Federation starship, we will stay out of it. However, Captain, you DID bury Senator Amidala in space. The Imperials will likely target your ship."
"Vader is smart enough to know he shouldn't blame Ron for what the Kobali are doing." Jaden said, "Plus he knows your prime directive just as much as we do - he knows we won't raise a finger to stop them as long as he doesn't shoot at us."
Tuvok refused to let it go any further. "Once our forces are at the planet, we will send them back to the Dyson sphere, and a skeleton force will be left behind for humanitarian support." The Vulcan's gaze turned to the senior staff of the Ra-Cailum, and Ron's head banged against the back wall. "Damn it."
ISD Chimaera - en route to Kobali Prime in hyperspace
Darth Vader strode onto the Chimaera's bridge as the conn officer called out the approach to Kobali Prime. The fleet was ready for a full-frontal assault of the system, and Vader was hoping to avoid engaging Starfleet or any of the 'local' races unless necessary. The blue-skinned Chiss standing at the commander's station had his arms crossed pensively, and Vader detected a note of concern in his mind. "Commander Thrawn. What concerns you?"
The Chiss turned to Vader, bowing to the Sith lord respectfully. "Lord Vader, I cannot help but be concerned—we know very little about these Kobali, about their capabilities and numbers, and most importantly their culture."
"Culture, Commander Thrawn?"
"Yes, my lord. If you know your enemy, you know how to defeat him; and the best way to learn the way an enemy thinks is by learning his culture."
Vader hummed through his respirator, considering. "A wise statement, Commander Thrawn. I take it Admiral Ozzel and Captain Needa do not share your concerns?"
"With respect, Lord Vader, Captain Needa dismissed my concerns out of hand and refused to pass them on. He said, and I quote, 'we do not need to understand pathetic inferior species, you over-ranked xeno'. Lieutenant Pellaeon attempted to express his support for my position, but Captain Needa ordered him to be silent and formally reprimanded him. I attempted to advise another plan of attack, but Captain Needa ordered me to stand down and attached a formal reprimand to my file, my Lord."
Vader wheezed deeply through his mask. "Bring Captain Needa to me, now."
"At once, Lord Vader." Thrawn bowed and marched off of the bridge.
The Chimaera dropped out of hyperdrive, a star and a tiny planet visible on the viewscreen. Vader looked to his side in shock; they were supposed to be closer to the planet, and come out shooting! The monsters who had taken his wife would be warned, alerted!
"Yes, my Lord?" squeaked the communications officer.
"Why did we drop out of hyperspace? What is Ozzel doing? Why are our weapons not powering up?"
"My Lord, Admiral Ozzel said that we should hang back, in order to see what the Kobali have at their disposal; he fears that no species can be as militarily weak as they claim to be…"
"He is as foolish as he is incompetent! Put him on, now!"
A mustached older man appeared on the viewscreen. "Ah, Lord Vader, I… urgh… gack!"
The man with Captain's stripes behind Ozzel barely spared a glance for his choking superior. "Lord Vader?"
"What is your name, Captain?"
"Piett, sir. Captain Firmus Piett."
"Did you support this imbecile's plan?"
"No, my Lord. I, my first officer, several Captains, and Commander Mitth'raw'nurudoo of Chimaera advised Admiral Ozzel to begin the assault with an immediate attack after rapid deceleration near the planet; we believed that this would counter for our limited knowledge of Kobali military strength."
"Congratulations on your promotion, Admiral Piett. Begin the assault; prove your worth as a commander to me."
"At once, Lord Vader." The man bowed, and Vader signalled for the communications officer to cut the comm.
"Imbeciles," growled Vader as he strode off of the bridge. "Must I do everything myself?"
He was halfway to the fighter bay when he remembered the other idiot that he'd been going to execute.
USS Enterprise - Kobali Prime orbit
Ahsoka rubbed her temples as she manned the communications station on board the flagship of the fleet. Her new hollow pip alongside the other two added some amount of guilt as she remembered how she got it.
'For gallant actions during the Fall of the Republic, and service above and beyond the call of a Starfleet officer'. Those actions involved nearly killing her master.
"Captain, I'm picking up a large fleet on sensors!"
Shon glanced back at Jirelle Kev, not in the mood for more bullshit. "More Vaadwaur?" "No sir. THey're all Imperial! Imperial, Victory and Venator-Class destroyers with… Kazon ships escorting?"
"Well, no surprise there that they were able to capture Kazon space so quickly," Shon said. "Put us on Yellow Alert."
"Imperial vessels, bearing 349 mark 083. Course, heading straight for the planet. Their weapons are armed, and… targeting the Kobali ships in orbit. Sir, they're not targeting us."
"Just as well. Tell our ground teams to get the hell off the surface."
Imperial Star Destroyer Relentless
Grand Admiral Firmus Piett pulled up a holographic battle map. "How far are the Federation forces?"
"Ten minutes at current speed, Admiral," said a lieutenant in service greys.
Piett's lips tightened. "Then we need to move fast to eliminate resistance and set up a defensive picket before they arrive. Order Star Destroyers Intolerant, Valiant, and Manticore to move forward at full sublight." Piett zoomed in on the Kobali ships. "These frigates are barely spaceworthy compared to the Federation vessels I have experience with. Order overwhelming force from Intolerant, with Valiant and Manticore two kilometers back to provide support in case of a trap. Launch all fighters, from all vessels."
"At once, Grand Admiral."
Piett examined the holomap again. Ten Kobali frigates, versus a dozen of Emperor Palpatine's finest warships. By all expectations, it should be an easy victory, but Piett knew that he had to move fast or those Federation warships would cut his battle group to pieces if they decided to engage.
"Receiving a priority comm from Chimaera, Grand Admiral," said a comm officer.
"Put it on."
"Admiral Piett," said the blue-skinned Chiss on the viewer. "This is Captain Thrawn. Lord Vader has relieved Captain Needa of command. Permanently."
"I see. Move Chimaera up to flank Vengeful."
"Understood. Chimaera out."
"Lieutenant, signal Determination to support Captain Thrawn." Piett eyed the Federation ships. He still had time… "Get me Lord Vader."
Vader's comlink chimed as he climbed into the cockpit of his new TIE X1, and he blinked it up on his heads-up display. A hologram of Grand Admiral Piett appeared before a 3-D tactical map.
"Lord Vader." Piett didn't bow; Vader idly thought that he'd never seen a man so stiff, and choked Needa slightly harder. "I need precise orders, my lord; do you want the fleet to begin immediate glassing of the planet, or do you wish for us to secure the Kobali population?"
Vader wheezed for a moment, Needa's last gasps in the background as the Sith mused. "Hold the planet, Admiral Piett. Let the Kobali know the true meaning of despair before I annihilate them. And, Admiral Piett?"
"Yes, my lord?"
"If you see… what they turned my wife into… take her alive, and undamaged."
"As you wish, my lord. Piett out."
Needa finally had the good grace to die, so Vader released his Force choke and turned to Thrawn. "Captain Thrawn, I require a fighter wing. I will lead the attack myself."
"As you wish, my lord. I will have Alpha Squadron waiting on your command."
"Imperial ships are heading for the Kobali vessels in orbit. They're launching fighters… I've never seen them before!"
The tactical console began beeping furiously. "Sir, the Kazon ships are breaking formation; they're on attack vector!"
Ron shook his head. "Morons. Red alert. All hands, stand to battle stations! Contact the Raging Tempest and get them to give us a frigate-sized fighter screen!"
USS Raging Tempest
"So, looks like the Kazon still have a bit of a hard-on for Starfleet," Takeshi remarked, as he oriented the ship towards the oncoming ships.
"Given what happened with Voyager, can you blame them?" Linda asked.
Takeshi sighed. "Not really. Still, their ships have never been that much of a threat. This should be over pretty quickly." He opened up the throttle, sending the ship at the incoming Kazon ships, before opening up with the Quad Cannons.
One of the raiders was outright obliterated by the attack, and the debris fell into the atmosphere. And the Sao Paulo was about to get help.
Takeshi, like most in Starfleet, had VERY low opinions of these ships. But now he was about to like them a LOT more.
"This is Commander Fox of the USS Juliet. Need a hand?" A flight of eight ships entered view, firing on the Kazon in a FAR more aggressive manner than even Takeshi could imagine.
"Sir, I think my opinion of the Miranda just skyrocketed," Kim remarked.
"Agreed," Takeshi replied, his jaw agape. "They might be explosive cannon fodder these days, but it seems they can still pack a punch."
The ship then shuddered as a lucky shot from one of the heavier Kazon ships made it through the shields.
"Shields at 84%, minor buckling of hull plating on deck 3, section 9," Matt reported.
And now the Battle of Kobali Prime had begun.
Thrawn wanted to throttle the Kazon. While they made effective cannon fodder, they were also IDIOTS.
'We didn't want to involve the Federation. If there is anything more dangerous than a democracy united in war, I do not know what it is!'
"Captain, the Ra-Cailum is bearing down on us!"
'…Though this DOES present me with a potential challenge,' he thought. "Turn us to engage," he ordered. "Let's see if Captain Pinkerton is as deadly as the records claim he is."
The Ra-Cailum charged at the ISD at full speed, using the Sovereign-Class ship's VERY tiny frontal profile as a kind of defense. And while they had improved their targeting computers, they weren't as accurate as Starfleet's weapons. "Evasive maneuvers. Make it more difficult for him to hit us." The Chimaera turned sharply, if slowly, to make her a harder target for the Starfleet battleship. "She's flying over us! Coming about—" The Chimaera rocked from dozens of impacts. "Sir, picking up a squadron of fighters! IFF IDs them as the 9th Tactical Fighter Wing!"
Thrawn hmmed in thought. "He used his ship as cover for the fighters. Impressive," he said. "Launch our own squadrons, keep them at bay, Redirect all Ion and Turbolaser batteries at the Ra-Cailum."
"Incoming fire from the Chimaera!"
The Ra-Cailum rocked from multiple impacts before Riza got them out of the line of fire.
"Come to bearing 215 mark 84! Forward torpedo launchers, target the Chimaera's engines!"
Three blue balls of death impacted the Chimaera's rear quarter, sending the large ship into a semi-controlled spin.
"Recall our fighters and get us out of here! This isn't our fight!"
"9th Fighter wing, RTB! We're leaving!"
"Sir, the Ra-Cailum and other Federation vessels are retreating! We've won!"
"Have repair teams prepare to patch the damage, and prepare for the ground assault." Thrawn ordered, not wasting a moment. "Without the Federation to protect them, let us see if these Kobali truly are as inferior as we've been told."
As the crewmen followed his orders, Thrawn watched as the Ra-Cailum withdrew with the other Federation vessels, with a small smirk on his face.
'A worthy challenger, indeed…' he thought. 'I look forward to our next match… Captain Pinkerton.'
Jenolan Dyson Sphere
The fleet had regrouped, all inside the neutronium ball. "We didn't lose anyone, but the Kobali forces fell back with us. The planet's in Imperial hands now."
Shon stared at the fleet outside the building that was now the unofficial HQ of the Delta Alliance. "And?"
Ron snorted as he handed Shon the PADD. "Sugihara's raising a shitstorm."
"Ambassador Motormouth?" Takeshi asked, wincing. "Ouch. I feel sorry for whoever has to listen to his ranting."
"Don't be: it's Admiral Jellico." Any sympathy instantly faded. EVERYONE hated that bastard; he was a competent leader, but a hardass of epic proportions.
"In that case, couldn't happen to a nicer guy," Takeshi said with a slight grin, though it faded in short order. "Anyway, any ideas how the Imperials managed to open their own portal to our galaxy? That's the only way they could be here, as far as I know."
"They DO have access to the wreckage of a Nebula-Class starship," Ron said. "Hook up enough reactors to the damn thing and you can tear open a rift to any universe. They just so happen to like OURS. Anyways, I've taken the liberty of having our ships resupplied. Knowing Sugihara, he'll make that obstinate bastard Jellico bitch to Janeway, who will then bitch to Admiral Quinn." And once THAT happened, they would be fighting the Imperials.
"And there goes the neighborhood…" Jaden said with a sigh. "Galactic Empire vs the CIS Remnants, the Federation, The Mandalorians, and Klingons… and I can safely bet the Borg'll somehow get involved, along with all the other nasties from your universe like the Elachi, Undine and hell why not even those Iconian freaks I keep hearing about? It'll be a motherfucking free-for-all before we know it… wonder what they'd call this war in the history books? The Great Universal War, the Two Galaxies War… possibilities are endless."
"Well, if anything, we're being thrown into the fire. I'd better send a call for new blood. My MACOs have been demanding more people for WEEKS, and if the boarding actions the GAR liked doing were any indication, we're likely to get boarded. A LOT."
The ex-drone left the office, going straight for the transporter room.
"So, the Imps are pressing us to just abandon the Klingons, and just join you?" Aren asked, as the Imperial 'Representative' sat before him, who was none other than the Commander of the Blazing Claw army, Sutura.
"I was closest to the Mandalorian Sector, so they sent me," she said, before she sighed. "Aren… it's not looking very good… the Empire recognizes you're with the Klingons, but for the hardliners that's not what they want, they want Mand'alor for its Beskar, but for what I haven't the foggiest."
"You think your cover could be blown?" Aren asked with a bit of worry, however Sutura shook her head.
"For the most part, I'm still in the clear." She said, "Most of the men under my command are loyal to me, recruited directly from the Gordian Reach, or are former GAR Clones. I had those biochips in their skulls removed the moment I heard about them, so I don't need to worry about Vader Order 66ing me or my officers… but there are some in other sector armies that have been pushing their noses where they don't belong… I'd be lying if I said I wasn't getting worried."
Aren sighed, as he put a comforting hand on her shoulder, "We're gonna get through this, you know that right?" He asked, "Between you, me, the Klingons, Federation and the CIS Remnants, we've got more than enough force to hold our own against the Imperials."
"I know, but…" Sutura said sighing, "If it comes to the worst… they may send me to 'pacify' your sector of space…" she said, "If that happens… Aren I can't let that happen… I don't want to leave the Empire, I see potential, but with the way things are going, the Empire may be worse off than the Republic ever was unless someone does some drastic changes…"
"We'll be fine," Aren said, as he held Sutura close. "We've got plans for this… worst comes to worse, you, your men and their families can make a one-way trip here to Mandalore where you'll be safe… I won't let anything happen to you or your people."
Sutura smiled a bit as she let herself lean into Aren's embrace, "Its been so long… since we've been together like this…" She whispered. "Since I've seen our kids…"
"They're doing fine, Sutura." Aren said smiling, holding his secret wife. "They completely understand your situation… you'd be amazed how much Amy is like you…"
"I can't wait to see them again…" She said, looking up at Aren, with a rather seductive smirk. "Though… while we're here… alone…"
"This is supposed to be official business, here…" Aren said with an equally large grin as he began to slide off her uniform.
"I've got three days before I need to leave - got plenty of time." Sutura said, before the two kissed.
Ron sat at his desk, reviewing new personnel transfers. "Ah, new blood."
Riza handed Ron another PADD. "New MACO transfers, sir."
"They've been bitching for months no—" the captain's eyes widened at the five names on the list. "NO. Not THEM."
"They DID pass training courses, onii-sama."
"She kicks me in the face! With HIGH-HEELS."
"Umm… who are you guys talking about?" Jaden asked.
The Pinkerton siblings glanced at one another, but neither answered as the door opened.
Corpsa leaned into the room, smiling. "They're HEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEERE."
"Send them in. And tell her that if she kicks me in the fa—" Ron was sent flying backward into the wall before Jaden noticed his attacker.
She was younger then any Starfleet officer he'd met, which VERY long black hair and violet eyes. She was only 4'10, but those eyes held hidden experience to them. She was older then she looked.
"Homura. What have I said about KICKING ME IN THE FACE?"
The cold girl simply flicked her hair back. "I still haven't forgiven you. As such, I will continue to kick you."
"It was an accident!"
Jaden glanced between 'Homura' and Ron. "So, uhh… introductions, please?" He asked, gaining their attention.
"Jaden, this is Homura Akemi. Homu, Jaden Takeo, son of—"
The girl's high-heeled shoe met Ron's face again before he collapsed on the desk. "I know who he is, Captain. Unlike my… comrades, I bother to read your mission reports."
"Sheesh, Homerun! The man apologized the last time!" Jaden's attention was diverted to a redhead around the same age, with her long hair done in a ponytail. "Yo. Kyoko Sakura. You must be that Mando guy we've heard about."
"Uh, yes that me," Jaden said. "Jaden Takeo… nice to meet you both."
She pulled out a box full of chocolate-coated wafer sticks, and Jaden cautiously took one. "Hey, Pinky! Homu still kickin' you in the face?"
"What do you think?"
Kyoko smirked, showing off one of her canine teeth. "See, the big guy accidently walked in on Homura and her girlfriend. LOTS o' screaming from blacky and he was covered in bruises."
That made no sense. Ron had the reflexes of a Jedi: how the hell could a little girl kick HIS ass?
"…how the hell does a de-borged Starfleet officer that can successfully go toe-to-toe with Sith Lords get his ass kicked so easily by… her?" he asked, as Homura continued to glare at Ron.
"Oh, Homu can stop time."
Jaden blinked, before looking at Ron for confirmation. "She can. I've seen it. Actually, YOU'VE seen it. She's not fully human anymore thanks to a certain monster. Here. YOU try stopping her."
Jaden chuckled before his face felt something hitting it at high speed, knocking him to the ground. He didn't even sense it: no warning at all.
"Stay away from Madoka, or else." The girl left the room, and Jaden gave Ron a look.
"It's a long story. In a nutshell, she's from an alternate universe that ran on a different set of rules."
"…" Jaden was silent for roughly a minute, before he growled and looked up "WHAT IS WRONG WITH YOUR UNIVERSE!" he shouted. "IS THERE NO END TO YOUR GODDAMNED INSANITY?!"
The grins on the faces of the siblings and the Andorian tactical officer. "Trust me. the insanity NEVER ends. Let's introduce you to the others."
Waiting in the mess hall were three girls roughly the same age as Homura and Kyoko: one had pink hair (Ron assured Jaden it was natural; the Mandalorian did NOT want to know how) while the other two were an older blonde and a girl with short-chopped blue hair.
"Ladies." Pink and Blue looked at the older captain. "Ronald-san. It's good to see you again—what happened to your face?"
"Your girlfriend happened, Madoka. Ladies, this is Jaden Takeo. Jaden, Madoka Kaname, Sayaka Miki and Mami Tomoe."
Jaden followed Ron's arm as he introduced them: Madoka was pink, Sayaka blue and Mami was the blonde.
"Where's Kyoko and Homura?"
"Engineering, pestering Sonja for new guns. Speaking of which, I need to get down there. Jaden, I think you should get to know them: you'll be working with them for the foreseeable future."
"Uhh… alright…" Jaden said as he looked at the women before him. "So… alternate universes, right?"
Madoka nodded sadly. "Yes. We're sort of refugees now. The only survivors."
Sayaka groaned. "Come on, Madoka, let's not think about that," she said, before turning to Jaden. "You've met Homura, right?" Jaden nodded. "Well, she used to be shy and clumsy. At least, she SAID she was. See, transfer student's from an alternate future: her mind is ANCIENT. 500 years old. And she's kinda crazy and overprotective of Madoka here."
"…Transfer students… from an alternate future universe..." Jaden repeated. "What kind of universe are you from?! A Magical Girls anime from Japan?!"
Mami flinched at the term. "Uh… not exactly; it was the past for us. and I wouldn't say that around Mami: she's still guilty about… certain events." Sayaka pulled out a gem of some kind.
"I call her that because she WAS a transfer student." She said, "And the term is 'Puella Magi', although 'lich' is a lot more accurate." Jaden was confused until Sayaka placed the gem on the table. "The Captain calls this thing a 'consciousness receptacle'; the Enterprise ran into something similar a century back or something. Basically, we're running our bodies by remote from these things. We call them 'Soul Gems' for a reason."
"So… you really WERE a Magical Girl or… a 'Puella Magi'…" Jaden said, "And your souls… are inside those Gems… controlling your body… who in the FUCK DOES THAT?!"
Mami gave Jaden a picture of a cat-like animal with 'arms' coming out of its' ears and rings around the 'wrists'. "Calls itself Kyubey. Oh, don't worry, Ronnie boy already dealt with it." Sayaka smiled gleefully. "Trapped the bastard in his own body using those Borg implants of his, then gave him to admiral Quinn. As a footwarmer." The overly-quiet Mami then stood up and left the mess hall.
"What's with her?"
Madoka smiled sadly. "Kyubey manipulated Mami for years. when she found out, she just… lost her voice."
Preying on emotionally vulnerable girls? Even the Sith had better standards than that.
"…what the fuck kind of person DOES that?!" He asked.
"One that doesn't have any emotions. For that sick thing's race, they're a 'mental disorder'. But that's something we don't need to worry about anymore."
"Yeah, a collapsing universe kinda solves ALL our problems. Took out the Incubators in one shot." Sayaka smiled sadly, trying to hide her own pain. "So, you've got some interesting stories to tell, right?"
Ron and Takeshi stood in the tactical room with Tuvok and several others. "The mission to retake Kobali Prime will commence at 0200 hours. The Raging Tempest and the Ra-Cailum will go through the enemy line under cloak to land MACO and Mandalorian assault teams on the surface."
"May I say, Admiral, that I will undertake this mission with the GREATEST reluctance? I hold less love for the Kobali than the Imperials do."
Tuvok ignored the Captain's objections. "Once we have control of the primary anti-ship weapons array the Empire has set up on the surface, we will direct it to fire on all Imperial targets in orbit. This will allow more ground forces to land without incident."
"As long as we don't get shot to pieces in the process," Takeshi snarked. "Honestly, not looking forward to this - and not just because I don't like the Kobali. I'm getting a bad feeling about this…"
"You and half the fleet." Ron's older communicator (used only when he didn't want to have loud yelling from his combadge) beeped before he opened it. "Pinkerton."
"WHERE IS THAT LITTLE FUCKER?!"
Ron flinched at the yell. "I assume you've heard about that little bunny-cat, Jaden."
"THAT THING DESERVES TO FUCKING DIE!" Jaden shouted, "THAT SHIT IS INEXCUSABLE! I WANT TO KILL IT AND USE ITS FUR FOR MY NEW BOOTS!"
Takeshi and Ron shared a look before both men chuckled. "That's a new one. As soon as we're done with this op, I'll get in contact with Admiral Quinn. Maybe the Federation Council will finally make up its' mind about that thing." Which was the ONLY reason it was still alive, if paralyzed. THey STILL hadn't decided on that thing's fate.
"You know, I'm in need of killing shit on the ground. I think I'll join you on Kobali Prime."
Kobali Prime orbit - ISD Chimaera
Thrawn stared at the planet below, unimpressed. The Kobali were inflexible and doomed to extinction because of their mistakes. Only those willing to bend and accept change would survive.
"Admiral, Lord Vader is currently awaiting a report on the status of the other forces invading the planet."
"Please inform Lord Vader that they are pressing on the Kobali cells on the planet's surface and avoiding contact with our forces." Pellaeon nodded before walking off.
"It's strange." The human paused before looking at Thrawn.
"The Borg. They have the tactical knowledge of every race in this galaxy, yet they do not use it. It takes an ex-drone to use this knowledge. Don't you find that… wasteful?"
"I… believe it is, sir."
"They are complacent and lazy. But that still makes them dangerous. One touch, one scratch, and assimilation is guaranteed. Underestimating them is unwise."
Flashes in the distance signalled the arrival of a fleet of ships: all Klingon, Romulan and Federation, with Delta Alliance members interspersed.
"It appears the battle has been decided for us."
The Enterprise fired on a pair of Imperial Victory-Class destroyers, using the phasers to carve through the ships, using torpedoes to push them aside. The Raging Tempest used her pulse cannons to finish the job, crippling the VSD Crusader, sending it on a collision course with the planet.
"They might lack the sensors needed for detecting the Ra-cailum's cloak, but we can't risk them hitting the ship. Target the closest heavy destroyer and fire!"
"Take evasive action!" The Chimaera bucked as the ship veered to port, trying to avoid getting shot to pieces by the Raging tempest once again, and they succeeded in nearly making the ship crash into the Avenger.
Thrawn hmmed as he searched for the Ra-Cailum. The Sovereign-Class ship was a challenge he wanted to overcome, and he WOULD overcome it. "Sir, the Overwatch is reporting critical battle damage from a flight of Miranda and B'rel-class frigates; they're abandoning ship!" The old Venator exploded, overwhelmed by the 20 or so small attack ships. 'Weak, but aggressive. Pack hunters. Their captains are… VERY aggressive.'
The Imperials had 37 ships in orbit out of the original 65 members of the attack fleet (the other 28 had taken heavy damage and needed to pull out for repairs) and the Alliance had 91 ships, mostly small frigate-sized ships like the Sao Paulo and the Miranda, but their captains were vicious and ruthless while their larger capital ships (represented by the Enterprise, Bortasqu, Lleiset and the D'deridex-Class Khepsh) broadsided their destroyers. That being said, the Imperials had TIE fighters, and the Alliance didn't, giving the Empire's navy an advantage. A flight of Peregrines and Stalkers caught his eye as they attacked another Venator.
'The 9th Tactical Fighter Wing. The Ra-Cailum IS here.' "Begin a sweep of the area. I want the Ra-Cailum found."
"Captain," asked Pellaeon after relaying the Chiss's order, "Why that one ship?"
"Because Pinkerton is completely unpredictable," replied Thrawn. "The Ra-Cailum's Captain sits astride that fine line between brilliance and madness—and an unpredictable enemy is the worst sort of enemy."
USS Raging Tempest
Takeshi opened up the throttle, pouring on the pulse cannon fire as he blitzed through the enemy lines. He was spinning, barrel-rolling, and somersaulting through the battlefield, just being a general nuisance to the Imperials in general. "Kim, what's the battlefield look like?" he asked.
"Like hell, sir! We've got TIEs and smaller capital ships gunning for us!"
The ship rocked from an impact from the Avenger's turbolaser batteries, draining the shields to 79%. "Sir, I've got three squadrons of TIE bombers on our asses! Sensor scans indicate that they're carrying heavy ordinance: anti-ship torpedoes!"
"Tholra, fire up the point defense grid!" Takeshi ordered.
The Xindi-Reptilian nodded, before activating a set of Phaser turrets that spat out fire at the pursuing bombers.
The bombers fired off their ordinance, and one torpedo impacted the rear shields before the rest veered off, hitting Theta Wing. Takeshi winced as the Brattain's rollbar exploded, followed by the port nacelle shearing off. The Mirandas of Theta Wing were always so fragile.
"Jeez, those guys are taking more casualties than they normally do," Takeshi remarked.
All the same, even though the bombers had released their ordinance, the point defense grid had taken a majority of them out, as well.
Ahsoka paid close attention to the sensors, watching the 9th TFW tear into the TIEs when she spotted more contacts approach. "Sir, I'm picking up a number of Kobali ships on approach, led by the Samsar, the Manusi, and the Sotunde."
16 Kobali ships, led by three of their prototype cruisers. Shon groaned in annoyance as the Kobali ships charged ahead of the Alliance fleet. 'If they want to get themselves killed, fine.'
"Pull us back!"
"Provide the Kobali ships with support and try to keep them from getting killed!"
ISD Chimaera - 3 hours into the battle
Thrawn walked towards the forward viewport, where his leader was currently standing. "Lord Vader, may I speak with you a moment?" The Dark Lord of the Sith turned from the Chimaera's forward viewport as a bright light signalled the destruction of a Kobali ship from the combined fire of the Victory-Class Strikefast and the Venator-Class Ardent Dawn.
"Yes, Captain Thrawn?"
"I have been studying the database we… acquired from the Gagarin's wreck. It appears the Kobali are experts at genetic manipulation. Perhaps greater than even the Kamino."
Vader's gaze, while hidden, was focused completely on Thrawn. "They are also sickening beings, reanimating the dead to serve their own purposes. They took my wife, Captain Thrawn; choose your next words well."
"While I must express no minor disgust at their method of reproduction, My Lord, I also must admit that they could be… useful to the Empire. The Jango Fett genetic material will eventually degrade, and we will need a new breed eventually. If the Kobali scientists could extend that useful lifespan, we could find a suitable replacement. After that… we will have no use for them. And the Kobali are already doomed to extinction; their biology is inherently self-destructive and their culture inflexible. Let them be a useful footnote."
Thrawn had a point. The Kobali could be used for the Empire. And they would pay, SLOWLY, for their crime against nature.
"…Single them out, then. No fewer than ten thousand. But let me be clear, Captain. If they are of no use to us, there will be… consequences."
"I will see to it personally, Lord Vader."
"Do not fail me… Admiral Thrawn."
Ron wore standard issue MACO commando armor, fixing the helmet to his head. "Ok, people, sound off." Beeps were heard from all of the 'Puella Magi', and Jaden let out a Mando'a reply.
It took three hours for the fleet to clear a path without making it look too obvious, but now the cloaked assault cruiser was en route to the upper atmosphere.
The seven-man team were currently in one of the ship's escape pods, and Jaden was looking at the rather… frilly outfits the five girls were wearing. They LOOKED like modified MACO battle armor, with added… well, he didn't know. "I don't know how it works, but their old Puella Magi outfits changed to fit the modern battlefield."
"…strange, but that's not the strangest thing I've heard from your universe," Jaden admitted, shaking his head. "Alright, what's our game plan?"
"The Ra-Cailum's going to approach the planet under cloak, and we're going to eject the pod we're in into the atmosphere. The term the MACOs like to use for troops doing this little maneuver is ODST: orbital drop shock trooper. And we're going to drop in and shock them into having heart attacks. Especially Homura."
Ron smiled. "You'll see."
The pod rocked as the Ra-Cailum grazed the atmosphere.
"Ejecting pod. Good luck!"
"Express elevator to hell, GOING DOWN!"
The Pod shot out of the ship, heading straight down.
The 501st Legion were fighting inside the city, firing at any Kobali they could see.
That was when they saw something coming in from above at high speed. It was a Starfleet escape pod.
And, unknowingly, the harbinger of their doom.
"YEEEEEEEHHHHAAAAWWWW!" Jaden shouted as the pod dropped. "BEST! RIDE! EVER!"
"DAMN RIGHT IT IS!"
Homura simply stood up before walking over to the entry hatch. "Permission to depart, Captain?"
"Granted! Give em hell!"
The hatch blew out…
And Homura jumped out of the escape pod.
Jaden glanced out. "You sure she should go out on her own like that?" he asked. "I know she can control time… apparently…"
"Trust me! There's a reason the MACOs nicknamed her 'the Hommando'!"
One of the clones looked up before they spotted something coming at them. "What the hell is that?!"
"It's… What the he—" The 'contact' then appeared right in front of them, turning out to be a little girl…
With a VERY big knife.
The pod impacted a position outside the city, and the other six stormed out, firing at anyone wearing white. Most of which were screaming and running AWAY from the city.
"She's still got it."
The girls simply shrugged, used to Homura's brutal methods when she fought the Klingons nine months earlier.
"…I need to get fucking wasted when we get out of here…" He muttered.
"Trust me, the Klingons hate her. There isn't enough bloodwine in the UNIVERSE for what she does."
The girl in question walked out of the Kobali city, placing her combat knife into the shield that was on her left arm.
"Come on. The Imperials will launch a counterattack soon."
The team ran into the city, and Ron set up a forcefield to keep the clones from the main entrance. "So, who wants to kick the Kobali in the face for being stupid?"
Vader watched as several TIE/sa Bombers and their torpedo bays loaded up with a new weapon he had specially prepared for the Kobali. But they were not weapons in the conventional sense, not bombs or guided missiles… the weapons within these pods would mark the beginning of the end for the Kobali race, giving them the most… befitting end he could think of.
"My Lord," A lieutenant spoke as he walked towards Vader. "All of our troops have left the planet - the only forces we left behind are the Kazon troops we drafted."
"Excellent." The Dark Lord thrummed in his trademark deep growl. "Once the bombers are loaded, prepare for the bombardment. Once their mission is complete, begin moving the fleet out of the system."
"As you wish, my lord." The Lieutenant said, as he left to carry out his orders. Not long after, the TIE bombers were loaded up, and not long after they began launching from the Star Destroyers.
"Flight lead to all Flight wings: Operation: Blackwing is go. Repeat: Operation Blackwing is go."
This was a two-fold operation: glass the surface, then unleash the Blackwing Virus. The first part of the operation was complete: Kobali Prime was barren.
Now the survivors would suffer the virus.
Ron looked at the pathetic group. Less than 65000 Kobali, all 'reborn' from hundreds of races.
"General Q'nel, I presume."
The Kobali in question approached Ron, now missing an eye. "Captain. Here to gloat?"
"Oh, yes. I'm here to save your asses, then gloat at how STUPID you people are. You tried bringing Vader's wife back as one of YOU. You CORRUPTED my intentions, and now you're going to pay for it."
Q'nel shook his head. "I'm doing what I can to save my people!"
"You should've asked for help fixing your reproductive problems instead of stealing the dead! If there is anything I hate more than idiots, it's child molesters and grave robbers!"
"It's not that simple-"
"YES IT FUCKING IS!" Jaden snapped, causing everyone to jump in surprise. "Everything you are doing here is a fucking abomination! It's bad enough you deny these people fucking rest, but the few - FEW times they come back with the memories of their past lives, you indoctrinate them to 'accept' being a totally new species that's STERILE!"
"We have no choice!"
"You had PLENTY of choices! Like asking to correct your fucking problem! The Feds would've GLADLY done it!"
Q'nel was unrepentant. "I do what I have to do, Mandalorian. The survival of my race depends on it, and your people do the same thing!"
Jaden was silent for a few moments, as an aura of doom seemed to be given off on him. Eventually, Jaden punched the Kobali in the face sending him to the ground. "DON'T YOU EVER FUCKING COMPARE YOUR PEOPLE TO MINE, ASSHOLE!" he shouted. "We bring people into our civilization by their own free will! They CHOOSE to become Mando! And they are still ALIVE when they make that choice! What you do is take that choice away! You rip them from the afterlife, and force them to become one of you as a bunch of ZOMBIES! There were PLENTY of alternatives you could've done to 'save' your race, but you just picked the single most immoral option you could think of!"
The ground shook as the building they were in was hit with turbolaser fire. "Hey, big guy! We got a LOT of bucketheads comin' in, led by someone in a black black suit!"
The stormtroopers, which Kyoko insulted, they could live with.
NOT the 'guy in the black suit'. "Well, shit."
The man formerly known as Anakin Skywalker set the starfighter's autopilot to "hover", popped the hatch, and jumped out in one fluid motion, using the Force to cushion his fall as his cape flared behind him. He landed easily, his knees bending to catch his bulk, and ignited his lightsaber. Which he pointed at the supremely unlucky General Q'Nel.
"You. You are the leader of the Kobali, are you not?"
Ron took several judicious steps aside. "Just to double-check, did the Security Council decide or not yet?" he whispered to a MACO, coincidentally Sayaka.
"Not yet; they're still in subcommittees," she whispered back.
Q'Nel wet his pants in terror. Ron sighed and stepped forwards, igniting his own lightsaber. "Honestly, as much as I want to let you beat the shit out of this sanctimonious hypocrite, I'm still under orders to stop you, Anakin."
"That man is dead," growled Vader. He wasn't specific, but at this point it didn't really matter; he was pissed, and the Kobali was going to die. "My quarrel is not with you, Pinkerton."
Jaden surreptitiously drew his blasters as another legion of stormtroopers emerged from the landing shuttles. Ron stood firm. "Sorry, Tall, Dark, and Intimidating, but I'm under orders here."
Vader's glove clenched. "Then you will die with them."
He raised his lightsaber, but out of nowhere, Homura's communicator chimed with the sound of a girl's delighted laugh. All eyes turned to the diminutive commando, who blushed deeply and pulled up the message. Then she smiled like a snake and sheathed her knife. "Time to go!"
Ron held up an index finger to the mystified Vader. "One moment?" Vader, nonplussed, nodded. The ex-drone checked his own communicator, and began to snicker. "Oh, man. Q'Nel, I can't say I'm sorry, but you brought this one on yourself. Move out, people! We are hereby ordered to engage in a fighting retreat from Kobali Prime." Q'Nel began to protest, but Vader's hand shot out and the Kobali was pulled into the air with a wheeze.
"This changes nothing, Pinkerton," warned the Sith lord. "I may respect you, but our nations are still enemies."
"I don't think he cares, Vader," Jaden said shrugging, "Oh, and you're welcome by the way… make these fuckers suffer for us, please?"
"I intend to…" Vader said, before several TIE/sa bombers flew overhead. However instead of dropping bombs, they released a trail of brownish-colored gas into the air as they flew over the city.
Jaden pointed up at the passing bombers. "What was that?" He asked.
"Go into the city, and find out." Vader said, as he diverted his attention towards Q'Nel's own suffering.
"We kinda have to if we're gonna reach the Evac site…" Homura said.
"We'll hijack an Imperial shuttle. There has to be PLENTY of those."
"Admiral, multiple attack craft are inbound to the planet. Our database identifies them as Vaadwaur."
Thrawn nodded in acknowledgement. "Signal the attack groups to move in and prepare to glass the planet."
Pellaeon blanched at the order, then remembered what the Kobali were and how expendable the Kazon were.
"Base Delta Zero has been ordered. Repeat, Base Delta Zero is ordered."
Mami fired her weapons at two 'troopers before the team reached a barely functioning transporter. "Ok, I'll get to work fixing this thing, then we're going back to the ship! Cover me!" ron ripped up a floor panel and began working on the unit itself before the older girl tapped Jaden's shoulder.
"Mami?" he asked. "What is it?" She pulled out her tricorder, and typed a few commands in it before words popped up on the tricorder.
'I'm picking up an imperial transmission on the Comm's,' The message read. 'Do you have any idea what a Base Delta Zero is?'
...Jaden damn near shat himself as his eyes widned. "WE NEED TO GET OUT OF HERE NOW!" He shouted.
"What? What's going on?" A wall of green rain began impacting the ground outside the city and the mountains. "Oh, fuck me. They're glassing the planet." Ron kicked the transporter's pattern buffer before the device hummed with power. "I've jury rigged it to beam us out before it auto-destructs! Get onto the platforms, NOW!"
They didn't need to be told twice before the group leaped onto the transporter pad, and a few moments later they were transported off of the planet, just before their position was bombarded with a wave of turbolaser fire.
Shon watched as the Ra-Cailum retreated from Kobali Prime as the Imperials took advantage of the Vaadwaur's arrival and began glassing the planet.
"If it weren't so destructive, I'd call it beautiful. Like rain falling."
Ahsoka shook her head. "They might be zombies, but life is life. They should've asked for your help."
"They didn't, commander. Get us out of here."
The Enterprise spun 180 degrees before the Raging Tempest and the Ra-Cailum joined formation and jumped to warp.
Less than ten thousand survivors, all infected with the Blackwing virus. Thrawn's advice would save them for now, as they would be given injections that would keep the virus from killing them. But they would never recover.
"Lord Vader! A Vaadwaur ship is landing outside the ruins, sir! They're requesting to meet with you!"
The dark lord turned to the Jango clone trooper. "Inform them that I will greet them in person."
Gaul, leader of the Vaadwaur Supremacy, enjoyed the sound and the feel of what had until recently been soil crunching and snapping beneath his boots.
"Darth Vader. Artist to artist, I admire the work."
"I was not the sole composer," wheezed the masked figure. "You may thank Admiral Thrawn for the enslavement of the remaining Kobali and Grand Admiral Piett for carrying out my orders most efficiently."
"Regardless," replied Gaul with a warm smile, "you have done me and the Vaadwaur Supremacy a great favor. My… erstwhile allies, in this universe, have proven themselves… untrustworthy. I shall have to… clean house, as it were."
"And I assume that you are in search of new allies?" growled the Sith.
"Precisely. And who better to ally myself and the Supremacy with than those who have already done us such a great favor?"
"What does the Galactic Empire gain from this alliance," hissed Vader.
"My scouts and… agents inform me that you have not yet duplicated all of the systems common to this universe. The technology given to me by my former allies is considerably advanced even here; it would be remiss of me to not consider sharing it with you as an option."
"I believe, Overseer Gaul," growled Vader, holding out a hand, "that the Emperor will be most amenable to your proposal. Now, if you will excuse me… I must deal with some most troublesome Kobali."
Jenolan Dyson Sphere
Ron watched as dozens of Kobali from the cruisers were herded into medical centers, some being beamed from the surface. "Rutia says the Kobali are all infected with some sort of virus. Anything you can share, Jaden?"
"Do I look like I have a PHD?" Jaden asked. "It's obviously part of whatever it was that Vader sprayed into the atmosphere, so long as it doesn't infect us we'll be fine."
"Either way, we've got Level-5 quarantine procedures in place, and everyone that was down there got their shots." Jaden winced at the idea of getting ANOTHER injection of Borg nanoprobes. Relentless or not, he didn't want Borg tech in his body.
Sayaka kicked her feet up onto the desk. "Well, it's not like it can infect us! We're zombies already!"
"Liches, Miki. And put your feet down."
Sayaka glared at the black haired girl before ignoring her advice. Followed by her being sent on her ass by leaning back too far.
The Mandalorian and ex-drone ignored them. "The dead are being sent to the morgue. Where they belong. A fitting end to a race of zombies, no?"
"Hopefully whoever they were before they were Kobali can rest in peace now…" Jaden said with a sigh.
Ron the True Fan: Brains… BRAINS…
117Jorn: What? You think we wouldn't cash in on the Zombie bandwagon eventually? It's getting George A. Romero in here now :D
Ron the True Fan: Special thanks to Worffan101 for helping us OBLITERATE the Kobali. ...Sort of. Eh, zombies. BURN EM!
Takeshi Yamato: Well, we've still got a bit to deal with, either way. And was anyone expecting the Puella Magi Madoka Magica crew to make an appearance?
(Everyone looks suspiciously at Ron)
Ron the True Fan: what?