All You're Good For
Mara moved silently around the Ebon Hawk. Everyone else had long since retired for the night. But she couldn't sleep. Whenever she slept... images of Revan plagued her dreams. Images of her. She shivered, the cold of the ship cutting through her. But she refused to put any more layers on. She was wearing her Jedi robes, the ones Master Dorak had gifted her all those months ago. Now Dantooine was in ruins, and the Academy was a burning crater.
Mara forced the thought away, and continued walking the desolate corridors. It was deathly quiet in the ship; the only sound the gentle humming of the engines, and the occasional beep of the system slipping into a deeper form of energy saving mode.
They were parked in Ahto, Docking Bay #1, Manaan. It was midnight on the planet; everything was perfectly still. Except her mind.
She found herself back in her room again. She looked around her, hesitating. Everything was silent. Mission was asleep in the nearest bottom bunk, her blue lekku laid out beside her head on the pillow. Juhani had retreated fully under the covers in the bed above, and the lump she made moved slowly, comfortingly, as she breathed, looking amazingly like a... well. Like a cat.
Mara smiled, softly. She paused for a second, and then drifted over to her bunk, going as quietly as she could to avoid waking them, and then smoothed down her covers, silently making the bed. She did it automatically, instinctively. Her years as a soldier had instilled that disciple in her well. She smiled without emotion. Years as a soldier... That was a laugh. She barely remembered her real years as a soldier. The only ones she remembered were the few the Council had imprinted in her mind, the one that Mara the smuggler had been coaxed into by the Republic, thinking 'can't beat her, hire her.'
She finished her bed, and then, silently, backed out of the room. She stayed there for a moment, hands resting on the cold metal doorframe, and then she felt a small shiver go up her spine. She straightened, instantly cautious, and then shook her head.
"What do you want." She asked, without looking around.
She could feel Canderous' smile, "How did you know I was here?"
She shrugged, turning round to hit the door switch, not wanting to disturb the sleepers, "I... sensed you."
He shook his head, sceptically, "Save the mysticism for your Cathar, she eats that crap up."
She raised an eyebrow, keeping her face casual, "And you, of course, don't believe in the Force, or auras, or a sixth sense. 'Cause you're a sensible, straight-thinking sort of person."
He gave a small shrug, smiling. Almost cocky. He looked her up and down, his eyes taking in her Jedi robes with more than a hint of amusement. Then they moved back up to hers, "Can't sleep?"
She waited a beat, and then shook her head, forcing her voice to seem more casual than she felt: "I was just... gunna go outside a bit. Clear my head."
He smiled again, "Mm, and you've got a lot to clear, haven't you... Revan."
Mara looked at him, coldly. Then, abruptly, she walked straight past him and down the corridor.
"Hey, hey!" he called, grabbing her arm and spinning her back around, "No offence, sweetheart!"
She looked at his hand, frostily, "Get off me."
He paused for a second, and then let go.
She looked at him, "You call me Revan and expect me not to take offence," she shook her head, disgustedly, "Typical Mandalorian."
"You keep talking about that 'Mandalorian' shit, darling, and I'm gunna know you're Revan," he replied, shaking his head, "Dear God, do you even hear yourself when you talk?"
She looked at him for a second.
Walk away, she coaxed herself, C'mon, just walk away. He's a Mandalorian, this is what he does. No need to get angry. There is no emotion... Walk away.
She shook her head, and turned back along the corridor. Again, he grabbed her arm, but this time he pulled her back round and forced her back against the wall. It was so sudden, so abrupt, that she did not have time to react.
Canderous pushed her back, moving a hand over her neck, "No running away, sweetheart. I wanna talk to you."
"Get off me." Mara snarled, struggling with his grip.
"What's that here, honey?" he asked, casually, "Hey? What's that here?"
His hands ran up her arm to a thick white bandage on her shoulder. Her eyes followed it and then flickered back to his, her breathing heavy. It was where Malak had tortured her. He'd use the Force to capture her, freeze her to the spot, and that bandage was where he'd placed his lightsaber, starting with a slight burn and then pushing, harder, cutting down, blood pouring over her arms, dripping down her fingers, the pain crippling her but unable to move, unable to make a sound - You know, I always regretted betraying you from afar. This way seems much more... personal - he was pushing her, trying to push her over the edge, almost succeeded. If it wasn't for Carth. She hadn't had the time to apply some Kolto to it yet.
Her wary eyes flickered between his and the wound, still cautious around it. He smiled at her, the sort of smile that could command armies, the sort of smile that could turn people against their own allies, and then reached up and grabbed her shoulder, forcing her back into the wall.
Mara gasped, the previously unnoticed pain hitting her like a hammer to the face. He tightened his grip and her breath left her, a stream of muttered, meaningless obscenities flying over her lips. The pain was shocking through her systems, she felt dizzy, she pushed her back against the wall in attempt to keep herself upright, pain searing through her shoulder as she did so. She forced herself to focus, and her eyes moved onto him with grim, pained expectation, forcefully swallowing her pain, "Get your hands off me." She hissed.
He smiled, loosening his grip slightly, and then moved closer to her, putting his mouth near her ear, "What is it that disgusts you so much about me, huh? Your skin crawls whenever I get near to you," he kissed her neck, slowly, gently, his tongue barely brushing her skin, "I can feel it. So what is it, huh?"
She shook her head, slowly, her shoulder still aching from the memory of his grip, keeping her silence, refusing to give him the satisfaction of her answer.
"Is it me being part of the Exchange?" he continued, almost curiously, "Working for them? Is it the fact that I used to be a mercenary? That I used to kill, used to capture, used to take slaves?"
She gave her wrist a vicious tug, trying to pull out of his grip, but it was like steel against her. He smiled, tutted at her, and then, forcing her hands above her head away from him, pushed his elbow back into her shoulder. Mara bit her lip, forcefully, a low whimper rising from the back of her throat. The agony was almost unbearable and she couldn't get him off, she couldn't get him off!
He watched her pain, her fruitless struggles, and gave something close to a smirk, "There now, calm yourself down. Fighting me's gunna hurt you more, isn't it."
She managed to yank her hand away and lashed out at him, catching him hard across the face. He pulled back and grabbed her arm, forcing her around so her head was on the wall, yanking her arms behind her back, "Right, okay, so you're gunna be difficult with this, are you? Should've known. Well. These should help you stayed behaved."
She heard the ever familiar click of hand-linkers and she immediately upped her game, buckling, scrambling against the wall, trying to force him off her. She felt his rough breaths on the back of her neck as he fought to contain her, and then gave up, instead putting a certain amount of pressure on her shoulder, forcing her into the wall so she was in too much pain to fight.
She felt him clasp the linkers onto her, making sure they were tight, and then he spun her back around, "That's better. Now we can talk."
"Get off me, Ordo," she said, gritting her teeth, "Get... off."
He ignored her and moved closer. With a huge effort, Mara managed to force her reflexive shiver back down. But he still felt it. Felt the hairs stand up on the back of her neck. He smiled, slowly, "You see? You can't stand it when I'm near you. You feel fire surge below your skin at my... touch." He moved his hand on her arm, his thumb making soft, slow circles on her skin. His voice was a low purr; silkily persuasive and terribly, terribly dangerous, "It's odd. After all, I've seen you are strong. Very strong. The best torture techniques of the Sith barely rattled you. You stayed so strong."
Anger flared up inside her, and she found it hard to breathe. Forcibly, she moved her gaze onto his eyes, letting him see the anger beneath, forgetting the Code, forgetting the Jedi.
"I won't warn you again, Mandalorian," she said, her voice soft with barely contained fury, "Get. Off. Me."
Canderous smiled, loosening his grip slightly, "And there we have it. Mandalorian. That your reason, sweetheart?"
She shook her head, "I'm Republic, you're Mandalorian, the two just don't mix."
He shook his head, laughing, "No no no no, you're Sith."
She fought with him, anger spilling over her until she couldn't control it, "I am not Sith! I'm a Jedi!"
"Jedi, Sith, whatever you call it, why d'you hate the Mandalorians?"
"Are you joking?" she asked, incredulously, "You attacked without provocation, you killed millions of innocents, you crushed whole planets just so you could provoke us into this damn fucking War!"
"Well, if you would've met our army honourably..."
"Honour? You're so blind sighted that you still think this was about honour?!"
"It was about honour."
"It was about no such thing! It was about your bloody Mandalorian egos and conquering! All you've ever done is kill, all you're good for is killing!"
He smiled, slowly, looking her over with that damned spark of amusement in his eyes, "And you think you're any different? Let me tell you something, sweetheart." He moved his hands back to her shoulders again, and Mara winced, her body expecting the pain. But, this time, he seemed more interested in her collar, running his hands down it and slipping them under her coat, "You may walk the walk... and talk the talk..." he slipped his hands deeper into the cloak, sliding it off her shoulders and down, where it stayed stuck around her arms, caught on the linkers, "And wear that... gorgeous Jedi uniform of yours... but on the inside... you're just like the rest of us."
He put a hand to his holster and took out a small knife. Mara froze, immediately, watching it. He caught the expression and smiled, putting the blade up to her lip and running it down, all the way, down her neck and over her chest, stopping at the top of her white cotton trousers, lightly enough only to leave a long, faint line, "In fact... you're worse than the rest of us." He slipped the blade under her top, drawing it up a little. "What you got under those Jedi robes of yours, hey?" he tapped her twice on the forehead with a finger, "'Cause I know what you've got up here. You've got the anger. That streak, running straight through you. That ruthless streak. That's Revan. That is Sith."
She looked at him, her anger boiling inside her again. Ever since the Leviathan and Darth Malak... ever since he had taken Bastila... she had found her temper uncontrollable. Her powers over emotion seemed... strained. Broken, somehow. She had a vague idea that it was the bond they had. They bond she'd made when she saved her life. Whatever Bastila was going through... her emotions were getting under strain too.
And all it took was some stupid kath hound like this to push her over the edge.
Canderous smiled at her, gently pushing back a strand of hair that had fallen over her mouth, sliding it back behind her ear. Then he leaned forwards and kissed her, roughly, so roughly that her head was forced back against the wall. Mara jolted her head to each side, trying to get him away from her, and then, struck by a sudden bout of inspiration, she clamped down her teeth, biting his tongue.
He let out something close to a mutter, and instantly pulled away. He moved his tongue around his mouth, feeling the no doubt painful grooves, and then laughed, "Whatever's your fancy, sweetheart," he moved close to her again, smiling, and breathed in her ear: "You know I love it when they bite."
Anger filled her senses so hot she could feel it eating at her inside. Canderous laughed, spotting it easily, "Nice emotion control there, 'Jedi'. Your Masters would be proud of you." Abruptly, he pulled her forwards, bundling her backwards through the corridor, through the main hold, "Come on, sweetheart. Seeing as that pilot of yours now feels so disgusted about your true identify that he can't even be on the same ship with you... I'm guessing the cockpit should be free. Come on, honey. Relax a little. Come have some fun."
"Like hell." She felt her eyes darken, turn to black. She'd promised herself she'd never use her powers on her companions. But this was a different case. Anger burned inside her, and she no longer cared about the Code, she would throw at this man whatever Force she could use, Light or Dark, it didn't make any difference. She pushed out, using a brute force attack on his mind, trying to force her way in. She shivered with the strain but refused to give in, pushing and pushing more and more, giving it all she had got, kept going even past the stretch of her energy, even after she felt the exhaustion click into place.
Canderous let her continue for a moment before smiling and raising an eyebrow, "That all you got?" she stopped, abruptly, feeling the strain it had had on her suddenly snap, draining her energy. He laughed and shook his head, "Oh, sweetie. You don't spend a good few years fighting Jedi without getting to know some of their tricks." He cast an experienced eye over her, her lessened struggling and weary pants, "Now. I bet you're nice and worn out from all that mind-breaking, yeah? Should make it a bit easier, right? C'mon."
He dragged her the rest of the way to the cockpit, her struggles weak and fading. He manhandled her onto the pilot's chair, spinning it round so she was facing him. He moved over her, putting his hands down behind her back to take hers. With a flick of his wrist, he clicked the linkers open and then pulled her hands up, instead attaching the magnets to the wall of the ship. She was stuck.
Exhausted, Mara looked up at her hands, giving them a few half-hearted yanks. Canderous smiled at it, but didn't comment. Instead he turned his back, shrugging his maroon waistcoat off his shoulders and placing it on the empty seat, stretching out his back as he did so and clicking his neck. He walked over to her and took the Jedi cloak he taken off her when he undid the linkers and folded it, neatly, placing it on top of his jacket.
Then he turned back to her, and just watched her for a second, "So. What am I gunna do with you. Hey?"
She just looked at him. He smiled, and moved forwards, sitting on top of her so they were face-to-face and she couldn't move. She didn't struggle - she didn't have the energy - instead just looking at him, grimly expectant. She forced any other emotion down deep, as deep as she possibly could. She couldn't afford to feel right now. He laughed, and moved forwards, so close that his body was pressed against hers. He kissed her cheek, and let his lips move gently over her neck, "Who'd have thought I'd come to this, hey? A Jedi. Even worse, a fallen Jedi." His hand slipped down her shoulder onto her stomach, seeking out the strings that held her plain white top together, untying them, deftly. He paused, and then smiled at her, "What's the galaxy coming to, hey?"
"Why... why are you doing this." She managed, her head weak and dizzy, leant back against the chair.
He paused for a moment, looking at her, genuinely considering it, "Revan was a great military leader. I had a lot of respect for her. For you."
"This... this isn't respect."
He smiled, abandoning his seriousness and regaining his playful, almost mocking attitude, "Yeah, I know. Revan was a sort of... idol for me in during the Mandalorian Wars. She was an ideal, for all of us. I do have respect for Revan. For you. But... it seems something else is cutting over that." He looked at her, thoughtfully, "Do you think its revenge? Revenge for the war? I dunno, I suppose it could be. Or... d'you think I just wanna fuck the leader of the Republic fleet." He shrugged, taking the blade out of his holster again, "Dunno. Could be either. Could be both."
With two precise cuts, he sliced through her sleeves, allowing her top to fall off her without having to release her hands. He negotiated the white shirt off, leaving her in her jumpsuit. She fought again, hazily, her mind bleary, managing to free one of her legs and plant a firm foot on his chest, trying to push him away. He put his hands on her knees, pulling her legs away, pulling them up, over his, pushing them out of the way. He moved forwards again. He was close to her, too close, she could feel him against her. She recoiled back against the chair, her breath hard and harsh in her throat, terrified adrenaline pumping round her system.
The sound of her panting breaths seem to rouse him further, and he leant down into her, his hands on her knees, moving back and forth and up and down her legs, up her thighs and then back down again, his mouth clamped onto hers. He had moved so far forwards now, lifting her up and back against the chair, deftly.
He drew back a little, moving his attention back to her diminishing clothing. He pulled at the jumpsuit, searching for a zip, an opening. He slid his hand round her back and smiled when he found the line of buttons.
"Y'know, I didn't think you'd make it this easy." He continued, conversationally, deftly popping open the buttons one by one, "I'm starting to think that you actually want this."
The comment burned inside her. She tried to fight, moving her knee again, crossing her leg over her body, using the limb to push at him, trying to force him away. At the height of her strength it would have been difficult. Now it was damn near impossible. He brushed her off him, easily, laughing, and then cut the sleeves on her jumpsuit, too. He moved his hands down, catching the top of her trousers and then easily sliding them off. Then he moved his hands back up to her jumpsuit.
"Get off me." She managed, forcing her voice out her mouth, "Get... get off me! Canderous... I'm gunna goddamned kill you, get the fuck off me!"
"Now now, sweetheart, temper." Then he looked at her, considering, "But you're starting to get your voice back, apparently. Can't have you disturbing the crew, can we? Here we go."
He pulled a roll of electrical tape out of a drawer beside him and cut off a piece with his blade. He measured it against her face and then, ignoring the way she shook her head, violently, trying to avoid it, he forced the tape over her mouth.
He smoothed it down, firmly, and then smiled, "There we go. That's better, isn't it?"
Mara gave out a low growl of anger, smothered by the tape, and then rubbed her mouth frantically against her restrained arm, trying to peel it off. It was good tape. It didn't give.
Canderous smiled, "Perfect. Now... back to the point." He slid his hand up to her shoulder, his eyes locked on hers, calculating her reaction. Then he started moving his hand back down, using his palm to peel down the black cloth, torturously slowly.
He rolled her top down to her hips, and then sat back a little, admiring his handiwork, "Nice." He tilted his head slightly to one side, allowing his eyes to move over her, "Very nice." He raised an eyebrow, expectantly, and then nodded at her, gesturing to the remains of her clothing, "Shall we go a little further?" He slid the blade flat under the cloth, pushing all the way down to the grip, "Hey? What d'ya think? Shall we go a little further?"
She made a small noise in the back of her throat, bucking, trying to force his hands off her. He laughed, leaned down, and kissed her bare skin, his tongue making a line from the tip of her suit to the line of her cheek, kissed her neck again, moving around to the other side, gently biting her ear, his breathing rough and hot on her skin. He slid his hands blindly down her strong stomach, slipping his fingers underneath the fabric, starting to slide it down.
Canderous stopped. He looked up. He frowned. He reached out to the ship's computer, tapping a few keys. Then he gave a small, resigned sigh. He looked back at her, "It's your Republic pilot, sweetheart. At the gangway."
Mara's eyes widened, and her reflex mutter was stifled by the tape. Carth? Force, let him come through, please let him come through, let him stop this, let him... please... let him...
The Mandalorian seemed to see the hope and desperation in her eyes, for he laughed, shaking his head, "Here to save the day?" he asked, mockingly, "I don't think so, sweetheart. He doesn't even wanna be near you, so I'll just go let your Republic friend in and drop that you're here. Trust me, he won't come within a hundred yards."
She stared at him, glared at him, focussing all her hate and anger and disgust into the expression, allowing him to know just what she thought of him. He gave a small, almost wistful smile, and then drew his hands back down, straightening up. Then he paused, hesitated, and appeared to change his mind, going back down, kissing the line of her neck, hands on either side of her face, then his lips moving down, across her shoulder blade and down across her chest, his tongue tracing her body, small murmurs and groans of suppressed yearning erupting from the back of his throat.
Then, abruptly but very reluctantly, he forced himself away again, "No. Not yet. Gotta go let the soldier in."
He paused again, and she could feel his lust, his impatience, like heat on her face. Then he nodded, reluctantly, and pulled back off her, getting to his feet. He turned, hesitated, and then shook his head, taking her Jedi robe off the chair and laying it out over her, covering her body.
He smiled at her, "For decency's sake." Then he turned back to the door, glanced at her, and winked, "Back in a sec. Then, I promise, we'll carry on where we left off."
He left, shutting the door behind him.
Mara immediately looked around her, searching for something of use, something that would help her. She fought ferociously with the hand-linkers, trying to yank the magnets off the wall, but they were too strong. She was still weak, but she was gaining in strength.
She heard Canderous' voice, faintly, gruff and almost casually annoyed. Pretending to have been woken up. Then she heard Carth reply. Carth. He wouldn't abandon her, surely he couldn't abandon her now, no matter what she had been. She bent her knees and smashed her feet into the chair in front of her, causing a satisfyingly loud smash. She repeated it, constantly, screaming under the tape, the vague, incoherent sounds consistent but stifled, muffled. She kicked out at the chair again and again, but no-one came, no-one even registered her attempts. She gave a stifled, frustrated scream, kicking out at the chair again. It fell over, and then rolled away from her. Desperately, she tried to kick it again, kick it into the door, but she couldn't reach. She gave up, letting her head fall back at the chair, her eyes glistening with unshed tears.
Mara jolted her head back up. HK-47! God, had she ever been so pleased to see that droid! She motioned to her side with jerks of her head, murmuring under the tape, trying to get her message across.
The droid crossed into the room, hesitantly, looking at the carnage around her, "Statement: I believe asking what was going on would be very clichéd, Master, but still... I do have the burning of curiosity in my behaviour core."
She gave a low snarl, motioning to him again, pointing out her inability to talk.
"Statement: Of course, Master. You wish to be freed?"
Frustration burned inside of her, and she shot him with a glare that told him that if he didn't let her free in the next five seconds she was going to grab a soldering iron and go to town on his photoreceptors.
He moved over to her, getting the point, and placed his rust-red hand on the linkers. They immediately magnetised, and he yanked his hand back, looking over the restraints, almost curiously, "Commentary: Master, I believe these are adjusted Czerka VW12 edition hand-linkers. They will take me a few moments to break through, being a droid. As for this..." he moved his hand down to the tape on her mouth, and then looked at her, "Advisory: Brace yourself, Master."
He yanked the tape off her mouth in one, quick movement. It stung, but Mara just shook her head, forcing herself past it, "Now that's more like it."
"Statement: Good to hear your voice again, Master Revan."
"Don't call me that. And, please, for God's sake, get these goddamned things off of me!"
"Statement: With pleasure, Master."
He began working on her left cuff while she looked over the right, "A shot of electricity might break the link, yeah?"
"Confirmation: Yes, Master, but that very well might break you, your fragile meatbag body being what it is. Just give me a moment, soon you will be free."
She grinded her teeth, but made no comment. Where was Canderous? She couldn't hear his voice anymore. Where was he? Was this some sort of trap?
"Query: Master... may I ask... why you are so... unarmed."
She frowned at him for a second, and then glanced down, seeing her body only just covered with her Jedi robe. She blushed despite herself, and struggled to think of an appropriate reply, "I... I had a little run in with... with Canderous. I need you to get me out of these before he comes back. Like, now."
"Statement: Ah... yes... the Mandalorian meatbag..." his glowing red eyes moved around the room, clocking his jacket folded neatly on the chair, "Clarification: And I assume this was some sort of..." he paused, searching for the words, the distaste in his mechanic voice obvious: "Botched mating ritual."
She raised her eyes to his, "Botched what?! No! Well... not a... mutual one, anyway."
HK managed to unclasp her left hand and moved immediately onto the right, "Query: Not mutual for who, Master?"
She shook her head, gesturing at the linkers, "Take a wild guess."
"Suggestion: If this meatbag has somehow damaged you, Master, then please make me aware of such."
"What, and give you the satisfaction?"
"Objection: Indeed not, Master! I in fact derive no satisfaction at all from your being in direct harm. In fact, what I was trying to say was that if this meatbag had been harming you, I am anxious to... re-educate him in the proper decorum of communications with my Master. Retraction: With your permission, of course."
"No." She said, quietly, turning her wrist round in circles, testing it, her voice low and dark, "No. You leave that to me."
Canderous left the idiotic pilot in his cabin. He'd done exactly what he'd expected him to do, even gone so far as to ask him where Darth Revan was first. He'd immediately avoided her, spinning some line about needing rest, needing time to think. He'd realised the woman he'd 'loved' was a General in the Mandalorian Wars - a fantastic General, mind - and maybe had had a little bit of a tyrannical stretch afterwards, and, instantly, he wanted nothing more to do with her. That was the problem with the Republic. No perspective.
The thought of what he had left in the cockpit was burning through Canderous' mind, an old, predatory lust that he hadn't felt at this intensity for some time. And talking to him, to Onasi, knowing that she knew he was talking to him, to the one she seemed to care for, to worry about, the one who, since he had found out who she really was, had barely said a word to her, just made the feeling more powerful.
It had taken all of his strength to leave her. To not just fuck her right there and to hell with the pilot. She had almost been bare before him. So close. She had an even better body than he'd thought. Her usual attire of either thick, strong armour or unassuming Jedi robes clouded it. But not now. Now she had nothing to hide behind. So vulnerable. She should be that way more often.
He ran his teeth over his bottom lip. He wanted to wait a bit, wanted to make her wait, wanted to put it off as long as possible, savour it. He stayed still in the main hold, leaning against the wall, casually, smiling slightly. Then he couldn't take it any longer, and started moving towards the bridge, swiftly.
Mara swung out from the Communication Centre, using the momentum to smash him in the chest with the stock of her pistol. Ordo fell back, not expecting the blow, and the next one threw him to the floor. Immediately, she clambered over him, blaster pistol to his forehead, using her weight to keep him to the floor, "Now. Now we can talk."
He managed to cope with the surprise very well, raising his eyebrows and looking her over, his eyes lingering on the triangle of flesh visible at the neck of her recently retied Jedi robe, "Well... fine by me, sweetheart."
She backhanded him across the face with such ferocity that by the time he had turned his head back his cheek had already started to bruise. He winced and she could see he was feeling out his teeth with his tongue, checking to see if she had loosened them. The sight gave her a shock of savage satisfaction.
"Well." He stated, neutrally, "You've certainly got a hit. And you're quite the escape artist, too. May I ask how?"
"Explanation: I believe that would be me, meatbag."
His eyes moved up to HK, and then back down to hers, raising an eyebrow, "You're being rescued by your assassin droid? Revan, you've hit a low."
She hit him again, in exactly the same spot, knowing perfectly well how much it would hurt. She yanked his head back to her, relishing his small flinch, "Now. You listen to me. This... is my ship. And you go... by my rules." She looked him up and down, disgustedly, "Believe me when I say you are so lucky I'm not killing you right fucking now."
He managed a small, infuriating smile, "Oh, Mara. You wouldn't kill me."
Without a word she took her repeating blaster flicked off the safety and pulled the trigger. He flinched but the pistol did nothing but give out a loud click. Mara threw it to one side and held out a hand, HK immediately replacing it with one of his. She held it up to his head, again flicking off the safety, "Not charged, let's try again, best two out of three."
He looked at her for a second, and then laughed, shaking his head, "Okay. So maybe you would kill me. Why haven't you."
"I thought about it. But I'm not gunna let you be right. I'm not gunna let everyone on this ship believe I'm still the cold-hearted murdering bastard that Revan was."
"Objection: Master, you say that like it's a bad thing!"
She shook her head, impatiently, "Present company excluded, of course."
"Thank you, Master."
Canderous raised an eyebrow, but then transferred his gaze back to her, "So... what happens now?"
Mara paused for a second, forcefully suppressing her rage, "We're gunna keep on travelling. Keep on with our mission. Find the Star Forge. And we'll forget everything that happened here. In the meanwhile, I'm gunna do some research into that Force resistance thing you've got going on and if you ever trying something as goddamned stupid as this again then I'll kill you in a heartbeat, is that... in any way... unclear."
"And what if I can't," he asked, gently, the amusement in his eyes unmistakeable, "What if I can't stay away from you. What if I just can't stomach it."
"You'll just have to find a way to. Won't you."
"And if I refuse?"
She shook her head, bitterly, "You won't. 'Cause if you do... I'll leave you here."
He raised an eyebrow, "Oh, what a punishment."
Mara smiled without any sign of amusement, "Yes. It is. 'Cause you know where we are, Mandalorian? We're on Ahto. Manaan. And you know the only rule here?" she leaned down towards him to whisper in his ear, "Keep the peace. And that's something you just can't do. There'll be no fighting for you on this planet, no source for your Mandalorian honour. You'll become a mercenary again for another kath hound just like Davik, and you'll have to put up with that for the rest of your life. And if you don't... they have the death penalty." She leant back, gauging his reaction, "So. You don't really have a choice. Do you."
He watched her for a second, a small smile flittering over his lips, "Clever girl. But what about right now. You're just gunna let all this go, just like that, huh."
She raised an eyebrow, coldly, "Oh, I wouldn't say that."
She flipped the pistol over and slammed the stock down into his forehead, knocking him out cold.
Mara paused for a moment, panting, and then stumbled to her feet, leaning back against the wall, "Mandalorian scum." She glanced at HK and then nodded at the unconscious Mandalorian, dismissively, "Stick him in the storage room. And quickly, his regenerative implant won't let him stay out for long." She passed him the hand-linkers, "You'll need these." She paused for a moment, and, as an afterthought, passed him a roll of electrical tape, "And this."
"Statement: It would be my pleasure, Master."
She nodded, distractedly, and sunk to the floor, leaning her head back against the wall. She let her eyes flutter closed, and tried to control her breathing. Her mind was filled with something close to guilt over what she had just done.
It was about no such thing! It was about your bloody Mandalorian egos and conquering! All you've ever done is kill, all you're good for is killing!
Those were her words. And, if that was true, what was she only good for? Deceit? Murder? Information? A tool to be used, by the Jedi and by the Republic, for their own means, to find what the old Dark Lord had been hiding? What was she good for?
Tears started rolling down her cheeks, and, this time, she didn't try to stop them. She let everything come out, Dantooine, Taris, Malak, Revan, Karath... Bastila... all those things she'd done... all those people she'd killed...
"Statement: It is done, Master. The meatbag is still shut down, but he will reanimate soon."
"Good. Take his weapons. Lock the door."
"Statement: Yes, Master."
The droid did as she said - loyal to the last - and then turned back to her, "Observation: Master, you appear to be leaking."
She put a hand up to her eyes and wiped them off, "Yeah. They're called tears."
"Query: Are you damaged, Master?"
She gave a small, slight smile, "No external. Physically I'm fine. You must know about tears by now. You're an assassin droid, right? I'd be surprised if quite a lot of sentients didn't start 'leaking' around you."
"Statement: I am unsure as to your meaning, Master."
She smiled again, "You're terrifying."
"Statement: Why thank you, Master."
HK looked at her for a moment, thinking, "Interjection: Master, if I may, you appear not as pleased as you should be after such circumstances."
She let out a low sigh and shook her head, "Yeah. Maybe. I don't know anymore, HK."
"Does it not please you, Master?"
"Yeah. Yeah, I think it does. And that's what the problem is."
HK shook his head, almost impatiently, "Observation: These ethical qualms you have are totally unfathomable, Master. Are they repairable?"
She gave a small, grim smile, "No, HK. I don't think they are."
"Advisory: To quote the cliché, Master, I do believe this meatbag had it coming. And more."
"Yeah. I suppose he does."
"Query: Then why are you so down, Master?"
She thought about it for a second, "I suppose I'm not. I suppose I shouldn't be. Anyway. This proves him wrong, at least."
"Musing: And how is that, Master."
"He told me I was Revan. Sith scum. He told me I was nothing but a murderer, a lowlife. But he was wrong." She paused for a second, and then looked up at him, slowly, "I'm not really Revan at all, am I."
HK shook his head, gravely, "Observation: No, Master. I don't think you are."