A/N: Yeah, I know the Lydia gets to them much soon than she would have in the game. That's because I'm trying to get through Peragus ASAP so that way I can have fun on Telos. Does anyone ever like Peragus? I didn't think so. Enjoy. Also, please note that this is an unbeta'd verison, as I'm waiting for my beta to get back to me. Sorry!
Chapter Two: Flawed Ideals
"There you are! I lost you there for a bit." Atton's voice called out of the comlink, sounding slightly worried. She had been wondering why she hadn't heard from him in a while. "There's only one problem…I'm reading you…on the outside! That can't be right…"
"Really? Maybe you should look up once in a while, then." She smirked, though no one could see it from inside her environmental suit.
Doing as she asked, he looked up from where he had been previously typing. "Huh? What the hell are you doing out there?" He cried out, looking at her as if she was crazy.
"I decided to take a nighttime stroll. The view is beautiful out here, you know." She teased mercilessly. "Actually, this is the only way to get to the dormitories. I'm going to check and see if there are any miners left alive."
Atton shook his head. "Your either really crazy, or…Oh, what now!" He shouted at the sudden beeping that came from the console beneath him. "Your not going to believe this…There's a ship that trying to dock!"
"Uh, it wouldn't be that one, would it?" She replied, pointing to the large, rusted colored ship that was pulling in the docks.
Despite it being a Republic standard ship, the Harbinger brought with it a certain sense of doom and destruction. Even from where she was standing she could sense the inevitable darkness that the ship brought along with it. She could almost smell death reeking off of the ship. There was something else, too. Something twisted, lurking in the dark shadows of the Harbinger, but she couldn't quite put her finger on it as to what it was.
"Yeah, that'd be the one." Atton said with a cheeky grin.
"This is bad." Lydia told him, her Force reaching out to the depths of the ship in front of her. "Really bad. This is even worse than that assassin droid who killed all the miners…"
"Uh, I take it you aren't really friendly with the Republic, then, are you?" said Atton uneasily. "Hey, wait a minute, what assassin droid…"
"Later, Atton! I'm getting fried out here! Try to shut off the ventilation system!" Lydia screamed, jumping out of the way of the purple flames. She ran as quickly as she could in the environment suit past the pipes that were leaking the purple flames.
Almost instantly, Atton began typing away on the main computer, hoping that some of his scoundrel's luck would help him aid his new ally. No such luck was to be found.
"Arg! I can't! It's locked me out of the main system! I can't get through it!" He grinded his teeth furiously, trying another hack he had known to work in the past, only to have it to fail as well. "Look, I'll try to override it as fast as I can. The best thing for you to do is to try to get back here so we can get aboard that ship!"
"Understood, Lydia out."
As soon as she said that, Atton dunked underneath the console and began to unplug various wires and circuits, hoping that something would shut down the ventilation system that was causing Lydia problems. He had only known her for a few hours now, but he could tell she was stubborn and honorable, and nothing short of her own death was going to stop her from going down there for some rare chance of rescuing someone.
Typical Jedi. He thought to himself. And yet, there was something different about this Jedi. She reminded him a lot of her, and that was saying something. He might just have to stay around a little while after all this was through and see what sort of person this Lydia turned out to be…
"Trying to barbeque my sister already, huh? She get on your nerves, too?"
The gruff, unfamiliar voice caused Atton to jump, hitting his head against the console. He swore colorfully in about three different galactic languages before looking to see who had caused him to jump.
"Another Jedi? What, did you guys breed or something while I wasn't looking?" The holder of the gruff voice held out his arm to help Atton up. Atton gladly accepted.
"Psh, I wish. Unfortunately, there seems to be a lack of hot chicks around for that to happen, so instead your stuck with me and the old lady." He pointed to the elderly woman behind him that Atton hadn't noticed before. The woman scowled at Atton as soon as she laid eyes on him, and Atton returned the favor generously.
"This is Kreia, and I'm Landon. I believe you have already met my sister?" The boy, Landon, asked politely, shaking hands with Atton firmly.
"Atton." He replied, shaking Landon's hand in return. He ignored the old woman who continued to glare at him. "Your sister is crazy. She's going down to the dormitories to try to save whoever is left down there."
"That is foolish." The old woman answered. "There is no one on this space station left alive. Our best bet is to get aboard the Harbinger."
"And what do you suppose we do once we do that?" Atton asked. "It's not like we could pilot the thing, seeing as there are only four of us and that thing usually requires a crew of fifty or more."
Kreia stared at Atton perplexedly, as if trying to solve a particularly troubling problem. "There is another ship docked here---the Ebon Hawk. We could get what we can off of the Harbinger, then leave on the Hawk."
Atton smirked. "That's a great idea, old lady. Unfortunately, we need the navigational codes, else we'd never get that thing off the ground."
Landon frowned softly. "Couldn't we just get the navigation codes off of that thing?" He asked, pointing to the Harbinger.
Atton scratched his head thoughtfully. "Uh, I guess we could. I didn't think of that. We should probably wait for Lydia, though."
Landon shrugged. "If we must."
A cold scoff came from behind him. "I'm glad to know you still love me, brother." Two arms engulfed him from behind, wrapping him in a warm hug.
"Only because you're my sister. If you were anyone else I would have left you for dead." Landon laughed. He then frowned curiously, as if giving the question actual thought. "No, I would have picked your pocket then left you for dead."
Lydia rolled her eyes. "You and your flawed ideals, brother." She tossed his hair playfully before turning to Kreia. "Who are you?"
"She's Kreia. I found her in the morgue. Almost wish I had left her there. Apparently she rescued us, and seeing as I have no memory of the event, I'll maintain a healthy amount of skepticism, especially since she seems to be a Jedi, too." answered Landon.
"That was years ago, Exile." Kreia told Landon before turning her attention to Lydia. "I tried to contact you through the Force, child. Why did you not answer?"
"Landon's probably already told you---we lost our connection to the Force years ago." She answered, almost shamefully.
Kreia raised an eyebrow through her brown veil. "But you still heard me, did you not?"
"I---" She found she could not answer. The truth was, she had felt something, a silent pull in the back of her mind was all, but she found she could not answer the older woman's question. "I---I lost my connection to the Force. I couldn't have---"
Kreia frowned. "You and I shall have a very long talk later. Now is not the time or place. We should head to the Harbinger."
"Good thing we have a clear run to the ship---" The rough clinking of metal stopped them in their shoes.
"Statement: Master, I believe I told you to sit down, shut up, and wait for rescue." The artificial voice of an assassin droid echoed loudly throughout the nearly abandoned mining facility.
Landon whipped around and looked Lydia in the eye jealously. "You have an assassin droid and you did tell me! What kind of sister are you?" He pouted in a way similarly to a young child who didn't get what he wanted. "I want one."
Lydia rolled her eyes. "You can have this one, I promise."
"Yeah, but this one seems to look like it's going to shoot at us. I want one that will shoot the people I tell it to." Landon countered with logic, in his usual jokingly manner.
"For our birthday, then, so long as you promise not to set it to get me." Lydia replied.
Landon snorted. "How'd you guess?"
"I've only known you for thirty-six years now, Landon. I don't need the Force to read your mind."
"Is that why we're in matching outfits and everything?" Landon teased.
The assassin droid had just about had enough of the twin's banter. "Statement: Master, please, go back to your kolto tank and allow me to shoot these meatbags." (question for beta: Does the HK-50 call people meatbags? I couldn't remember…)
Lydia raised an eyebrow coarsely. "Like you killed those miners?"
"Statement: Master, I was only looking out for your benefit. Those miners would have killed you. It would go against my protocol to allow them to live."
"Yeah, you're bugging me now. Can I kill it yet?" Landon asked, taking out his vibroblade.
"I think it would be in all of our best interest not to let the thing live." Kreia said, nervously eyeing the assassin droid.
"I'm with the old lady on this one. Can I shoot it?" Atton agreed, taking out the blaster he had taken off of one of the droids.
"It seems we have no choice. This is for all the miners you killed!" Lydia said, taking out her own blaster.
"Warning: Master, I have a very strong defensive measur---" The droid did not get to finish. Landon began hacking away with his vibroblade against the droid's outer metallic shell. It's yellow eyes began to glow and the droid began to shoot at random, taking no precaution about what it was shooting.
Lydia ducked from a stray shot, aiming her own blaster, and firing. She was very careful not to his her brother in the head. The rugged, undisciplined swings of the vibroblade proved to Lydia once again exactly how far her brother had fallen since their exile---he was fighting almost like a Sith.
No, Sith wasn't the accurate title. Even the Sith had more accuracy and grace than that. He was fighting like a Mandalorian: brutal, cold, and uncaring about the danger anyone else was in.
She gritted her teeth in frustration, repeated the Jedi Code silently to herself, and shot once more at the droid. She smiled when she saw that the droid was beginning to falter. That smile went away almost instantly when she what the droid was beginning to do.
"LANDON, KREIA GET AWAY FROM IT! IT'S GOING TO EXPLODE!" Atton shot her an alarmed look as Kreia backed away from the thing as fast as the old woman could.
"What do you mean, it's going to exp—" As soon as the words escaped his lips the droid began to engulf into flames, and it was only by his quick, Jedi-like reflexes that Landon was able to dodge the explosion at all.
His face was covered in ash from the exploding droid, but there was a sly grin on his face. "Hey, lookie what I found! Think we can use it for something?" He held the droid cluster up in the air where Lydia could see it.
She let out the breath she was holding at her brother's immaturity. "Don't do that! Listen to me next time! You could have seriously been hurt!" She scolded Landon harshly.
"Since when have I ever listened to yo---Hey! Don't hit me! Who's the older one, here?" Landon growled.
"Certainly not the more mature one, that's for sure." It was around this point that she realized Atton had been watching her.
She turned to him, her face still slightly red from her scolding of Landon, and asked quietly what was wrong.
"How did you know that was going to explode?" He asked, looking at her with pure amazement.
She blushed. "I worked with a lot of droids and computers during the Mandalorian Wars."
He still held a look of disbelief. "So did I. But I never would have guessed that thing was going to blow."
As they continued to walk towards the Harbinger, her face, if anything, turned redder. "Ah, well, I…"
"It was the Force," Kreia interrupted. "Not even I sensed the danger coming from that machine. You must have some sort of affliction with machines that made you able to sense something like that coming from that crude droid."
Landon stared at Kreia perplexedly. "Is that your answer to everything? The Force? Because if it is, I'm dropping you out of the airlock first chance we get."
Kreia gave Landon a sad smiled before answering. "Actually, I was exiled because of my belief that the Force was not the answer to everything, young one."
"Heh, sounds like the Jedi I remember…"
"Wait." Lydia interrupted, her eyes glowing with a mix of anger and curiosity. "The Jedi do not cast out one of their own so lightly…you must have done something besides not agreeing with them wholeheartedly on everything."
Landon smirked. "Yeah, if that was the case I would've been exiled practically on sight."
The old woman was obviously expecting such a response, because she turned to Lydia coldly. "And how would you justify your own exile, child? What reasons did the Council throw at you for your own exile?"
Landon winced. "Touchy subject, Grandma, I'd avoid it if you don't want to get sliced with my vibroblade."
"We left. We disobeyed the Council's orders during the Mandalorian Wars." Lydia answered, ignoring her brother.
"So did other Jedi, and yet, they were not exiled as the two of you were. Others abandoned their oaths, and yet the Council did not cut off their connection to the Force, did they?"
Landon quiet literally stopped where he was walking, turned around, and stared at Kreia with a look of shock and amusement. "Are you saying the Jedi did this to us?"
Kreia smirked. "Do you have any other reason why you suddenly lost your connection to the Force?"
"No." Lydia growled, staring at Kreia as if she was the devil itself. "The Jedi wouldn't do that---only in the most extreme cases would they ever…"
Kreia frowned at her as they entered the hallway that lead to the Harbinger. "Perhaps Landon is not the only one with flawed ideals about how the Force works."
Lydia scowled as she followed Kreia into the Harbinger. Landon had a curious look on his face, one that promised death and destruction if it was to be implemented, but above that, said that if the Jedi Order was not already gone it would be very soon. All the while, Atton couldn't help but feel as though they were being followed as they walked onto the ship.
"I have a bad feeling about this."
"Jedi!" Atton yelled as the current trio rushed through the halls of the abandoned ship. "You two are the worst Jedi I've ever seen!"
"You think," Landon began, panting as he ran. "That maybe you could do a better job? Or would you rather me just kill you now so you stop complaining?"
"All I'm saying," Atton started as another set of Sith Assassins showed up to his side. He quickly drew out his blaster, holstering it in his hand before taking aim and shooting. "Is that between that half-crazed assassin droid," He shot another assassin down. "Legions of invisible Sith Assassins," Lydia shot the one behind him, ironically saving his life. "And a man who looks like he sleeps with vibroblades," Landon cut the head off of the last assassin. "I was better off in my cell!"
Landon was positively glowing with anger. "That can be arranged, you know!" He did not stop to wipe the blood off of his blade; instead he simply put it back in his pack, oblivious to the smell of rotting flesh that coated the blade.
"Enough!" Lydia yelled, stopping yet another fight between the two for the second time in ten minutes. "Atton, head to the fuel line!"
"Are you craz---"
"Maybe." She shouted over the loud, roaring engines above their heads. "But it's the best chance we have of getting out of here!"
Landon frowned before yelling back to his sister. "Shouldn't we wait for Kreia…AH!"
There was a sharp pain, a dull twist that felt much like the silent lull of a lightsaber against his wrist. He kneeled down where he was, gripping his hand in fright, afraid of an unseen injury.
To Atton's surprise, Lydia was doing much the same thing, curled up onto the floor, holding her hand as if she was afraid it was going to fall off.
His eyes darted back and forth between the twins; he was half-tempted to leave them where they were. But a sullen voice, quiet possibly his conscience, was telling him he better not. "Don't worry! We're almost there! Damnit," Again, his eyes darted between the twins, both of whom were near hysteria. "What's wrong?"
It took her a moment, but Lydia answered first. "Kreia---she's hurt. I can feel it through the Force…" Despite the pain, Lydia had a sense of awe on her face, as if she could feel sunlight after spending so long in the dark.
"Screw Kreia!" Landon screamed, gripping his hand in terror. "My hand---It feels like it's been dipped in molten carbonite…"
"Can you move?" Atton asked gingerly, holding out his arm for Lydia. She grimaced, but stood up slowly, holding onto Atton's hand as though it was the only thing she had left in the galaxy.
"I-I think so." Lydia said, again squeezing Atton's hand tightly. "I think the worst has past." Even so, she did not let go of Atton's hand.
Landon stood up without assistance, but he still kept a hand on his wrist to be sure. His eyes darted at Lydia, then at Atton, and then at Lydia's hand. A wily smirk appeared on Landon, and Atton could feel his own face go red. He could almost hear Landon taunting him in his mind, but the blonde man said nothing outside of the smirk on his face.
"Come on," Lydia said, pulling Atton by the hand, shaking him out of his thoughts. "We still need to get through the fuel line."
They entered the fuel line cautiously; the darkness was almost welcomed after the scolding red light from the Harbinger engine room. The fuel line was narrow and dark, with not much headroom either. Landon and Atton both had their heads ducked to avoid hitting the top of the fuel line, but Lydia had no problems. She led them gracefully, her blonde braids still slightly fizzled from the running and the battle, but she was still quite beautiful.
Atton, as it was, was never more accurately aware of her hand on his. She didn't even seem to notice the fact that her hand was practically glued to his. He wasn't about to point that out to her, either.
And Landon, still a jerk, always a jerk, never let that wily smile off of his face. He said nothing, but Atton did need to use to the Force in order to understand what his eyes were saying. "You keep your hand on her hand. The hand moves elsewhere, I move, got it? And then insert random immature, perverted joke here." Not that Atton really had anything to fear from Landon: Lydia would be the one who would kill him if he really tried something. So, rather than push his luck with either twin, he kept his mouth shut and his hand glued to where it was. Running, after all, was what he was good at.
His thoughts, however, were distracted when Lydia let go of his hand and ran ahead of both boys. They followed her for a little ways before they saw where she had stopped---a simple, low-tech droid was lying, partially broken, on the floor in the fuel line. Not a smart place to leave a droid, that's for sure. Atton thought.
"It's—so---cute!" Lydia squealed, almost instantaneously beginning to tinker with the fallen droid in an attempt to fix it's broken spirit.
"If the thing shoots you I won't stop it." Landon said, mildly interested in his sister's enthusiasm. "In fact, I may thank it when it's all said in done."
"Shut up, Landon." She said, not even looking up from what she was doing. She patted the small droid on its head softly, cooing at it like she would a small child. "There now, are you alright?"
"Beep beep bert!" The droid whirled on its wheels excitedly, showing off whatever it could. The mix of silver and blue on its husk had lost most of it's shimmer, but the small droid did not notice. It was too happy being up and moving to take notice of it's missing parts and fallen luster.
"Beep beep burt!" It whistled again, leaning against Lydia as a sign of affection. Lydia petted the droid's 'head' as she would a small dog.
"So your name is T3-M4?" The droid beeped in response. "That's cute. I'm Lydia, this is Landon, and Atton." She said, pointing at both boys' as she said their names. "How did you end up in the fuel line?"
The droid then began to go into a series of unintelligible beeps and whirls, with Landon and Atton watching with mist-covered eyes. Lydia, on the other hand, was hanging on to everyone innocent beep the droid made, understanding the meaning behind every sound that was made.
"Uh-huh, we ran into that assassin droid to. Don't worry, he's gone for good." She patted the distressed droid's head affectionately. "Why don't you come with us? We could probably use your help."
Atton scowled. "Here's a better idea: Let's not."
Lydia stood up from her kneeling position and looked Atton straight in the eye. "Why?"
"I don't like droids." Atton said, glaring heavily at the small T3 droid. The droid beeped shyly, as if he was afraid Atton would hit him. He whirled around behind Lydia, hiding behind her skirt tail fearfully.
"I don't mind droids personally." Landon began, walking behind Lydia to where T3 was hiding. "But I like droids that work. This droid is an older model…He's obsolete." The droid beeped, insulted by what Landon said. "Where were you made, T3?"
T3 echoed another set of beeps that Atton couldn't understand, but for some reason, the twins understood every word. "Taris, huh? I thought it was destroyed."
The next set of beeps Atton didn't need to understand in order to know what the droid was saying: "It was."
Again with his wily grin, Landon patted the droid on the head. "Maybe your worth something after all, T3. Anyway, we've wasted enough time here. We should get out of here---the smell is giving me a headache."
"I told you I had a bad feeling about this." Atton said with a smirk as he sat at the pilot's seat, firing up the engine to the Ebon Hawk.
"Will you stop with your bad feelings? I've just about had enough of them." Lydia said from behind the turret base, firing at another Sith trooper who was trying to board. "Can't you get this thing started already?"
"I am trying, you know." He said softly, pulling the thruster back in hopes to jet-start the engine. "Where's Landon, anyway?"
"Doing what Landon does best: Slicing and dicing." About that time, the blonde haired man jumped in front of the Hawk, slicing the Sith who was coming on board. Whoever Landon wasn't killing out front Lydia was shooting behind him.
Come on, you stupid thing. Atton thought tiredly. Start already!
With a push of scoundrel's luck, the Hawk started instantly. "Yes! Lydia, get Landon! Let's go!"
"What about Kreia?" Lydia asked, shutting down the turrets while she ran to get her brother.
A soft pant came from behind the two of them. "Do not worry. I am here."
Lydia's eyes soften considerable, looking at the old woman, holding what remained of her wrist with unbelievable strength. "Kreia…Your hand…"
"Do not worry. Find Landon, then we'll talk." Kreia said quietly, using all of her strength just to remain standing. T3 beeped quietly beside her as she used him as something to lean on.
"No need, I'm here." Landon growled, jumping over T3 and landing in the co-pilot's seat. "Let's see if you can actually fly this thing, bud."
Atton smiled. "I am a professional, you know."
"I doubt that, but you won't live long enough to prove me wrong if you don't get us out of here now!" Landon screamed, strapping himself in as the ship began liftoff.
For an older ship, the Ebon Hawk was perhaps still one of the greatest. It burst into space with little difficultly, and within seconds they were in the astrofield.
"Okay, so why aren't we going into hyperspace yet?" Landon snarled tiredly, not having gotten any sleep since he woke up in the kolto tank and was planning on sleeping on the way to wherever. Lydia, on the other hand, was focusing herself in the Force, pouring all of her energy to help ease Kreia's pain. The old woman was trying to push her away, but Lydia would not let that happen.
"Unless you want to die, we have to keep dodging these asteroids…Oh shit." Atton yelled as something beeped on his control panel.
Landon yawned. "Something tells me you're going to tell me something I don't want to hear."
"Yeah, we're being followed. Those Sith must have found the Harbinger and are using it to track us down."
"So? Shoot one of those asteroids. It'll blow them up." Landon said, not caring.
"And us, and the whole planet! Are you stupid!" Atton yelled.
Lydia stood out of her meditative state and looked out the window. "There may still be miners alive on that station…we can't risk hurting them. Just keep dodging the Sith until we can make the hyperspace jump, alright?"
"I have a bad feeling about this."