Author's Foreword: Hellooo, Everyone! I'm Back! Thought I make a fic you'd all enjoy! If any of read the Star Wars Fic We Dared, well, this fic is based on the exploits on the Battalion commanded by the OC I provided, Marik Mereel Orar, and Zule Xiss (She and some others survive Jabiim in this). This first chapter takes place at the Battle of Jabiim in 21 BBY. So now enjoy the Prologue chapter of...Star Wars: The 26th.
'Before the 26th was formed, I had been pulled from one unit to the next, replacing one dead brother after another. When I found out my current unit at that time was being sent to Jabiim...well, let's just say some poor protocol droid went to the scrap heap after I blew my top,' - 26th Assault Infantry 'Slice Hound' Battalion Clone Trooper
Star Wars: The 26th
Prologue: Rise from Jabiim
Battle of Cobalt Station, Planet Jabiim
Outer Rim Territories
Anyone who ever set one foot on Jabiim, would've said it was the gloomiest, Force forsaken place in the galaxy due to it's constant rainy seasons, producing soggy mudfields, slippery cliffs, and constant floods. Well, they could'nt been more wrong, as the ongoing battle here made the terrain and everything else on the miserable planet even worse.
The planet was currently embroiled in conflict as part of the galaxy wide Clone Wars which started at the battle of Geonosis
And it was on one of these mudfields, a certain female Jedi Padawan from the planet Falleen was fighting against the Nimbus Commandos, part of the Jabiimi Nationalist Army. At first glance, she didn't look like the reptile/human hybrid of her homeworld. In fact due to her orange orange skin and more human-like features, she looked exactly like one of the Zeltron from the planet Zeltros. But if you ever called her that she'd kicked where it hurt most.
Her name was Zule Xiss, and she was dealing a massive strike against the Commandos.
In one hand, she held a DC-15S Blaster Rifle, firing at any Commandos that she saw within range, while in her other hand, she held her Bright Green Lightsaber, hacking away at anyone who came close enough for her to strike. Around her the last few Republic AT-AT Walkers continued to do what they could to hold off the Nimbus Commandos, but were quickly being overrun.
Not that it mattered to Zule, as her aggressiveness, and head-strong attituded pushed her to fight on, while at the same time allowing her to succumb to the Darkside of the Force. As the DC-15S energy battery ran out, she decided to go full close with her lightsaber as she charged the Nimbus Commandos, slicing them to bits and inspiring fear into the rest of the Jabiimi Nationalists, while the Droid Army of the Confederacy of Independent Systems just continued on as they combated the clones of the Galactic Republic.
She took her now empty Blaster Rifle, and used it to bash the dead of a Commando, and then tossed the now useless Rifle as he continued to wield her Lightsaber with both hands as she charged forward, never faltering in her attacks as she killed Commando after Commando with no hesitation.
'If I am going to Die here...' Zule thought as she glared at her enemies, her eyes filled with hate 'I'm Gonna take as many of those bastards down with me!'
With that she sliced off the limbs of a Nimbus Commando, who screamed in pain as he fell to the ground, his legs and arms severed from his body as they lay usless in different spots. Zule raised her lightsaber, preparing to impale it on the downed limbless commando.
"Any last words?" she growled out, but instead of reacting in fear and begging, the Commando just chuckled, his helmet speakers distorting his voice.
"You fool! Sooner or later, the Republic's presence here will be at an end!," he shouted, and a moment later, an explosion was heard and Zule turned her head to the source, her green eyes widening as one of the AT-ATs was hit on the top.
"See?" the commando said, as he grinned as the AT-AT began to tilt. "Now I'm gonna die...but at least I know your dying with me Republic Bitch!"
As the AT-AT slowly began to fall, Zule made no effort to run, instead she stood there, with her eyes closed, ready to finally be at peace...
Or so she thought.
Just as the AT-AT was about to crush her, she heard someone cry "LOOK OUT!" and she felt herself being picked up and flown away. After hearing the sound of a loud crash, and the feeling of being flown away vanish but still felt being carried, she opened her eyes only to look into the gaze of a T-shaped helmet visor.
*Begin playing Rahm Kota theme from Force Unleashed 1 & 2*
'W-what the-' was what Zule's mind until he heard the voice of the one who rescued her.
"Hey! You alright?" The man in Mandalorian Shock Trooper armor asked as he flew away from the exploding AT-AT with his Jetpack.
"W-Who are you?" Zule asked, still a bit stunned about what had just happened.
"Marik Mereel Orar, at your Service Ma'am." The Mandalorian said. "I'm from Ne'Tra Kad, and we're here to help."
As soon as they landed, and the man placed the Falleen Padawan down, Falleen got a good look at her savior. he was wearing Mahagony with black trim Mandalorian Shock trooper, with a black cape draped behind his right shoulder, and a black rangefinder on his helmet. His weapons were two DL-44 blaster pistols currently holstered on his thighs, and what looked like vibro-knives tucked away in holsters on his boots.
Zule then realized that this Mandalorian saved her from death. A death that she wanted and freely accepted.
"Why...why did you save me?" She asked/demanded, surprising the Mandalorian. "I was ready to die back there! I was ready for all of this to finally be over for me! I wanted To Die! I want to-"
Zule was again shocked as her head was cocked to the left, her eyes wide in disbelief, a deep red hand print on her left face cheek. The Mandalorian's arm was out-stretched, and Clone troopers and the remnants of the Padawan Pack, who watched the scene were shocked by what just happened.
"You wanted to die?" he asked the stunned Padawan, who was nursing her left cheek, rhetorically, "Don't be a damn idiot!"
Zule looked at the Mandalorian, complete shock in her eyes. "You wanna die right here? Right Now? When all of they-" he pointed to the other Padawans, and Clones surrounding them "-Still need you? I didn't think Jedi could actually be that selfish. Your Men still need you, your Friends still need you! You wanna die when they need you most?"
"I...that's..." Zule muttered, but Marik wasn't finished yet.
"It's true we're all gonna die one of these day, weather its on this force-forsaken Planet, some other time in this fucking war, or whatever!" He shouted. "But are you just gonna sit around, your hands behind your back and just let yourself die, or are you gonna try to do whatever you can do to get your friends and your men out of here alive?"
Zule didn't know what to say. For the first time, someone actually put their foot down and disciplined her, and not the way her former Masters did, but by this Mandalorian's use of a slap to the face, and the speech he just gave made her realize that her actions have caused everyone, including the clones under her command, and the rest of the Padawan Pack, grief. It took a moment for Zule to think about what Marik said, but she came to a decision.
"I...I don't know what to say," the Falleen said, and the Mandalorian Sighed. "Then don't say anything." He said as he helped her back to her feet. "Now's not the time for words, now is the time for Action. Roman!"
It was then three more people in Mandalorian Shock Trooper Armor appeared. The first was male with Blue/Red armor and armed with a rotary cannon, the next was female with black/blue trimmed armor and had a pair of blaster pistols, and finally was another female who had Black/grey armor and armed with the same kind of blaster rifle she has seen republic commandos use.
"Right here, Marik!" the male Mandalorian said as he and the women prepped their weapons.
Marik grinned behind his mask, "Good, now, time to Lock 'n' Load!" the other Mandalorins grinned at that.
"Finally! And not just droids this time!" the one with the pistols said as she twirled them.
"Ya, its nice to fight someone who doesn't line up in easy lines to gun down every once in a while." The one with the Rifle said.
Marik nodded "Alright, we need to push these guys back long enough for the Evacuation to complete." He said, "The Harbinger is gonna hold off the CIS forces in orbit with the Republic Fleet's help, but they can't hold them off forever."
The others nodded and Roman turned to the two women, "Revy, you go and support the Clones against the Natinoalists," he said and the female in grey trimmed armor, who nodded and took off. He then turned to the other with the rifle.
"Sasha stick with one of the Padawans, the youngest one possible," he said and Sasha blinked behind her helmet.
"Wait, what?" She asked, a bit angry "Why do I have to babysit?"
"Because I want to get them out of here in one piece!" Marik said. "Jedi or not, their kids. We need to get them out of here, and ASAP!"
Sasha groaned in disapproval and turned to the padawan pack, "Okay, which of you is the youngest of your group?" she asked and one of the Padawans, and a human female who appeared to be twelve years old stood out, she had brown hair and eyes, and desipte being twelve, she already looked mature for her age.
"My name is Aubrie Wyn, and I'm the youngest of the Padawan Pack," the girl said and Sasha blinked behind her visor.
"How old are you?" She asked the Padawan.
"I'm...12, " she admitted. And Sasha blinked in disbelief. "You have got to be kidding me..." she mutterd. "I knew the Jedi were desperate but sending a twelve year old into battle?"
Aubrie glared at Sasha for a moment "I'm a Jedi! It doesn't matter!" She said, while Sasha just rolled her eyes "Jedi or not, your still a KID. " she said. Aubrie crossed her arms and grumbled while the rest of the Padawans snickered.
"She's got you there Aubrie," said one of the other Padawans who Sasha could tell was a female Zabrak with black hair in a high pony-tail and blue eyes, and wearing red and black Jedi robes, "You ARE still a kid, even though you're a Padawan,"
Aubrie glared at the Zabrak, "Shut up, Kass," she growled out and Kass could only giggle at her.
"Aubrie, they have a point." Said another Padawan, a boy looking about a year older than she was who had Black hair tied into a ponytail on the back of his head, and Dark blue eyes. "We're all just kids. I'm sure she didn't mean to Insult you, she just wants to make sure we all get out of this in one piece."
The Jedi Padawan looked back at the boy who spoke, looking strait into his eyes.
She finally sighed "Alright, sorry." Aubrie said, "It's alright kid." Sasha said. "Now come on, let's do this...and you can bring your boyfriend there with you if you want." She added with a smirk as she moved forward leaving the two Padawan's wide-eyed while the others snickered.
"Aubrie/Sagan isn't my Girlfriend/Boyfriend!" The two both said, causing them to look at one another, and turned away hiding their blushes.
"Sure," Sasha said sarcastically, the two grumbled again, but followed after her.
Marik could only shake his head, but turned to the other Padawans.
"As for you guys, gather up some clones and prepare for the Nationalist and Droid attack," he said, and the Padawans nodded and went to gather some clones.
Meanwhile in the Trenches
"Dammit! This is crazy!" Shouted a Clone Trooper as he fired his DC-15S at Jabiimi Nationalist infantry that were advancing to where he and 10 other clones were positioned, "They Just keep on coming!"
"Then keep shooting!" Shouted another Clone next to him. "Digamma! San! Koppa!"
"Sir?" Came the reply from three of the other ten Clones with them, two armed with DC-15A Blaster Rifles, the other having a Z-6 Rotary Cannon.
"I want you three to find a better firing position!" The Clone shouted. "We need to keep them back longer!"
"Yes sir!" The three shouted in unison as they took off. It was then another Clone ran up to him. "Xi! I just got word!" He said. "Reenforcements are on the way!"
Xi looked at the Clone like he was crazy "What?" He asked. "How is that possible? Who is it?"
"Ne'tra Kad!" The Clone said, to their surprise. "They just arrived in system with a fleet of one Venator-class Star Destroyer, two Dreadnaught-class Heavy Cruisers, three Marauder-class Corvettes, and eight GR-75 Transports!"
"That's a whole Regiment!" the first clone said, "Are you sure about that Sampi?"
"I'm positive, Spitfire! The Venator and Dreadnaughts are sending in gunships loaded with troops along with the transports as we speak! The big ships and fighters are gonna hold off the Seppie's fleet in orbit while the Evacuation's underway!" Sempi confirmed and just as he said that a loud voom was heard overhead.
"What was that!" Spitfire shouted as he and the other clones looked to the sky, and their eyes widen at what they saw.
(Begin Playing: Star Wars Republic Commando Vode An)
From the skies appeared dozens of LAAT/i Dropship's with their troop bays open revealing the numerous men and women in Mandalorian Shock Trooper armor with different types of weapons. The LAAT's with turrets opened fire on the Separatists and Jabiim Nationalists, forcing them back as they unloaded their troops.
Xi and his squad watched as the Mandalorian PMCs charged at the Enemy forces, their eyes wide in awe behind their helmet visors. They were so busy watching the scene in front of them, that they didn't notice a squad of Nimbus Commandos about to fire on them. The sound of blaster fire was heard as Xi and the others rapidly turn to the source and saw three Mandalorians standing with Blaster barrels smokin' and the Nimbus Commandos dead at their feet.
"Hey! You guys gonna sit there and gawk all day or do you want in all on the action," Said one of the Mandalorians who was wearing Black with Brown trim Shock Trooper armor with a green flightsuit underneath. In his hands was a T-21 repeating Blaster rifle with a bayonet attached to the barrel, and a scope sight on top.
"R-Right!" Xi shouted. "Everyone! Take E'm down!" The other members of Xi's squad then opened fire with their weapons ranging from DC-15A's to DC-17 Hand Blasters at the now falling back Separatist and Nationalist Forces.
"Ya! How do you like that, hu?" A clone with a Z-6 Rotary Cannon Xi identified as Hurricane shouted as he opened fire. "Not so tough when your Outnumbered, now are ya? Hahaha!"
Xi just rolled his eyes at his Brother's antics as he signaled another one of his men, Kaph who had a DC-15x Sniper Rifle to take up a Sniping Position.
Elsewhere on the battlefield
While Xi's team fought in one set of trenches, a man wearing Black/Red Trimmed ARC Trooper armor fired his duel DC-17 Hand Blasters at a downed Super Battle Droid (SBD) and destroyed it. He then holstered one Pistol and tossed another one in the air as he drew out a DC-15S Blaster to gun down a Nimbus Commando attempting to flank him, and he then caught the Pistol he tossed with his free hand and destroyed a squad of five B-1 Battle Droids to his left without even looking.
Null ARC-01 'Revan' then paused as he heard the sound of Dropships, and looked up to see numerous LAAT/i's with Mandalorian Occupants drop from the skies. He couldn't help but smile at the sight.
'Bout time they showed up.' He thought, as a LAAT/i landed next to him and out came 9 Mandalorians in yellow with green trim shock trooper armor, but wearing different colored flightsuits, the Mandalorain, who was wearing a red colored flight suit, who appeared to be the leader ran up to Revan as he blasted a Nimbus Commando who was trying to sneak up behind him. He also saw that the Mandalorian was carrying a WESTAR M-5 blaster rifle. How he aquired that was beyond him.
"Sorry we're late!" He said as the rest of his squad came up next to him, "Had to get permission from the Chancellor," Revan chuckled a bit "No Worries!" He said. "Better late than never I suppose. And you are?"
"We're the Basilisk Team." The Mandalorian Said. "I'm Zeke Borne, the Squad Lead. And you are?"
"Null-ARC 01 Revan." He said. "Great to meet you, and its nice to finally get some help, I was beginning to think I was gonna have to take these guys on all on my damn self!"
Zeke chuckled a bit "If what I've heard about you Null ARC's is true, I don't doubt that you could." He said before getting serious. "So what's the situation?"
Revan sighed "It's a real mess out here." He said. "We only have a handful of troops here defending the station, at the most we may have a battalion in strength left, and we only have a few AT-AT's left as well. We have a handful of Jedi Padawan's helping us out, but it's not looking to good. I'd hate to say it, even with you guys helping us, but we're gonna have to retreat."
"That's why were here." Zeke said, suprising Revan. "We're here to assist the evacuation of ALL Republic Forces, Loyalists, and Jedi from the planet to the transports we brought with us. Our space fleet should keep the CIS Forces in orbit occupied long enough for us all to get out of here."
Revan was suprised at that, and thought it ironic since Mandalorians and Jedi were traditionally supposed to be enemies. Putting that aside for now, Revan made a grin that threatened to split his face.
"That's good to hear!" Revan said as he slung his DC-15S over his shoulder and brought out both his DC-17 hand blasters, "Shall we then?"
Zeke gave a grin at that, "Oh yes, let's"
In Space around Jabiim
As the battle on the ground continued, the space battle over Jabiim was just heating up. While the GR-75 Transports headed to the surface, the Ne'tra Kad fleet, consisting of one Venator-class Star Destroyer, three Marauder-class Corvettes, two Dreadnaught-class heavy Cruisers, and numerous different Starfighters and Bombers were engaging with the Separatist Fleet of two Lucrehulk-class Battleships/Droid Control Ships, Six Munificent-class Star Frigates, and three Recusant-class light destroyers with all of their Droid Starfighters and bombers at their disposal.
On the bridge of the Venator-class, the Harbinger, the Captain of the ship, as well as the woman put in charge of the fleet, stood on the bridge as she watched the battle unfold. She was wearing form-fitting Mandalorian Shock Trooper armor that was White with Red Trimming, and wore a Grey Jumpsuit under it. She had Crimson Red hair tied into a poneytail on the back of her head, and had purple eyes.
"Ma'am, the Transports have made it to the surface." The navigation officer said. "They are preparing to begin the evacuation."
The Captain, Calista Shae, nodded. "Alright, let's just keep these guys occupied long enough for them to finish up." She said. The navigation officer gave a nod in the arrirmative at that.
"Yes Ma'am," he said and left to carry out the order.
Outside the Harbinger, a squadron of Z-95 Headhunters were slugging it out with Vulture-class Droid Starfighters. They were painted in a Black with red trim paint scheme as the four ship squadron shot down droid fighters left and right.
"Edge! Vulture to your left!" shouted the leader of the Headhunters with the number 016 pianted in Mandalorian, as another with the number 007, dodged fire from the incoming droid and returned the favor by shooting a salvo from it's two laser cannons, incinerating it.
"Thanks Blaze!" the female voice of the 007 Headhunter said, "Chopper, Archer, how are you two doing?"
"Pretty good!" Came a cocky male voice "Damn, these Droids really are dumb though. You'd think they'd try something new every once in a while."
"Their Droids, what did you expect?" A third Male voice said. "Their not exactly smart, but they really get on our nervs sometimes."
"Less chatting, more shooting people!" Said Blaze as he lined up another Vulture Droid in his sights and pressed the trigger, turning it into slag, "Concentrate on taking out as many Droid starfighters as you can!"
"Yes sir!" was the collective response. Dax 'Blaze' Relan, a man of 26 years gave a sigh as his squadron continued their mission.
Formerly a native of Naboo, Dax was a pilot of Bravo Flight two years before. During the Trade Federation Invasion of his home planet, he lost a brother who was among the first Royal Naboo Security Force casaulties when they attacked his hometown of Theed. Before the invasion his brother, who was a rising star in the Security Force, argued time and again along with Vana Sage, to build a Self-Defense Force to better protect Naboo. Sadly, the government along with the queen immediatley shot that idea down, calling it warmongering much to his older brother's ire
After Naboo was liberated, Dax thought the Government would wake up, and make plans for a Naboo Self-Defense Force. Unfortunately, Queen Amidala, again, stamped it out and with full support from the populace, including his parents. Infuriated that his brother's sacrifice was in vain, Dax distanced himself and trained to become a pilot and before the war started he quit Bravo Flight, and joined Ne'tra Kad. Now, here he was over Jabiim in a starfighter, battling against Separatist Forces.
"Wardog Squadron, This is Harbinger." Came the voice of their Advisor. "We have a Squadron of Droid Fighters and Bombers attempting to break through the Planet Atmosphere to attempt to take down our transports on the ground. Intercept them before the enter atmosphere."
"Roger that Harbinger, moving to intercept." Blaze said. "Alright everyone, form up!"
"Copy that Blaze!" Edge said as she moved her starfighter next to Dax's.
"Formin' up next to you Kid!" Chopper acknowledged as he and Archer's Headhunters formed up next to him and went after the Separatists Droids.
"Alright! Let'em have it!" Dax ordered and the Four Headhunters laser cannon opened up nailing 5 Vultures, and 6 bombers.
"Well, that was easy." Archer said. Chopper chuckled a bit "It's like you said, Grimm." He said. "This is getting way too easy. The only possitive thing about this is that we're not killing anyone when we blow these things up."
"Enough Chit-chat, you two." Blaze said. "We still have a battle to win. And there are more enemies than those guys around."
"Ya, ya we know Kid." Chopper said as their Headhunters turned around to engage the next flight of Droids.
Back on the Ground with Marik
Marik flipped a Nimbus Commando over his head and then body-slammed the man to the muddy ground and then finished him with a blaster shot to the head. He then confiscated the SC Blaster rifle the Commando used and turned it on a squad of Nationalist Infantry, nailing 5 and making the rest dive for cover. He moved to a different position and jumped into a trench next to a mixed group of 6 clone troopers, and a platoon of NK Mandalorians.
"You! Troopers!" he said catching the Clones' attention, "What's your unit?" he asked and one of the Clones answered.
"12th Battalion, sir! Or...what's left of it," the Clone answered somberly."It's only the Ten of us left, sir."
"Who's in charge?" He asked. "I am." The Clone said. "I'm Seargent CT-1235 Xi."
Marik nodded "Alright, I want you to get your men ready to Evacuate." He said, surprising the Clone "We're not gonna last very long, so we need to get whats left of your unit, as well as any other Clone Troopers and Loyalists off of the Planet."
Xi was stunned when he heard that but managed to comply, "Y-Yes sir, right away sir!" he acknowledged and turned to the others.
"Come on! Let's gather up the others and get to the Evac site!" Xi told the Clone next to him and Marik swore he answered with a jubilant "Sir, yes sir!"
He then turned to the Ne'tra Kad platoon. "I want you to help them gather every Clone you can find, and get them back to the Station!" He said. "It's won't take long for the Sep's to regroup after we pushed them back a bit for another attack! So we gotta leave before then!"
"Yes sir!" The Platoon Captain said before turning to his men "Alright, you heard him! Let's move out!" He called out, and the Platoon all acknowledged as they mobilized.
Meanwhile, on the Separatist Lines
Alto Stratus could only grit his teeth as he watched his troops beaten back by the combined Forces of the Republic and Ne'tra Kad. He didn't expect the Mandalorian PMC to intervene and it was making his blood boil. And now he could see GR-75 Transports and multiple Gunships landing near the station to evacuate the Republic Troops, as well as the Loyalist Forces. He turned to one of his lieutenants and immediatley began barking orders.
"Get a hold of the CIS fleet in orbit! Tell them to send as many Droid starfighters and bombers as possible to destroy those transports!" He shouted.
"We can't sir! The Fleet is already engaged with the Ne'tra Kad Forces in space! They already tried to send in a squadron down but they were shot down before they could get into the atmosphere!" the Lieutenant said.
Alto growled as he slammed his fists against the controls of the Landspeeder he currently rode in. "I want all Forces to press the attack!" he shouted. "I don't care about Ne'tra Kad but those Bloody Republic Loyalist must be eliminated! I'll be heading out as well, get the A-Series Assassination Droids ready!"
"Y-Yes sir!" The Lieutenant said, not wanting to further anger his Superior officer as he hopped off of the Speeder.
Alto looked back at the battle and picked up a pair of macrobinoculars and focused on the trenches. He saw people in Mandalorian Shock Trooper armor, ushering Clone Troopers and Republic Loyalists toward the waiting ships. He then focused on the one in Mahagony with black trim armor.
'That one...,' he thought as his eyes squinted seeing him lead many Clones and Loyalists to the Transports. 'He must be the leader...' He then grinned. 'Well, then. Time to cut the head off of the snake.'
It was then 13 Silver-colored A-Series Assassination Droids arrived, and walked up to him. "We're going to kill that Mandalorian There." Alto said, indicating the Mahagony-armored Mandalorian. "He's the leader. Shoot to kill...but his head is mine!"
The droids nodded, and Altos grabbed his holstered blaster pistol, and then his sword and then lead the Assassin droids out onto the battlefield.
"Hurry! Get to the Evac Site! We don't have much time!" Marik shouted as the Clones and Loyalists headed to the Transports. It was then a Mandalorian in black armor came up to him with macrobinoculars.
"Sir! You might wanna see this," He said and handed him the macribinoculars and pointed in a specific direction.
Marik didn't like what he saw, which was the leader of the Nationalists Alto Stratus, along with 13 Droids that Marik easily identified with a groan.
"A-Series Assassination Droids..." He muttered. "And being lead by Alto himself. This is either bad news or a blessing in disguise..." He then activated his comm "Zeke, you read me?" He asked. "Basilisk Team, Respond."
There was a crackling sound on the COMM "Zeke Here, what is it Alore?" Came Zeke's voice.
"How far are you and your men from my position?" Marik asked.
"'Bout half a klick sir." Zeke said. "We've linked up with a few more Clones and are on our way back. Also, you remember that one Null ARC you trained with on Kamino? That Revan Guy? He's here with us."
Marik blinked in surprise before he grinned "Can ya put him on?" He asked.
"Already here, Marik." Revan's voice came through. "Nice to hear from you."
"You as well, but what are you doing here? I thought you would be with Kal'buir and the other Null ARCs," he asked and he swore he could hear chuckling.
"I thought that the Regular Army could use some back-up, so, I volunteered," he said and Marik could only shake his head.
"Only you Revan. Say, how do you feel taking down Alto Stratus?" he said, and he pratically imagine the grin on the Null's face.
"Ready. Willing. And able," was his response, "Besides, that bastard needs to go down for killing my brothers, Where is he?"
"He is leading a team of A-Series Assassin Droid heading for my position as we speak." Marik said. "And he does not look happy."
"Well, you and your boys here probably pissed him off Royally, so I wouldn't blame him." Revan said with a chuckle. "We'll be there shortly, hang in there Marik. How's the Evac going though?"
"Half of the GR-75s are full with the Loyalists and ready to evac while the gunships have already lifted with 50% of the clone troopers," Marik said, and then sighed a bit, "We even managed to get the youngest of the Padawans on one of the gunships, along with Sasha and a few clones,"
He could hear Revan sigh a bit in relief, "So far so good, what about the other Padawans?" He asked.
"Their helping the Ne'tra Kad Forces hold off the Separatists and Nationalist forces long enough for the Republic to get out of here." He said. "Once their clear, we'll board the last GR-75's and Bombers from our fleet upstairs is gonna bombard this whole area to cover our retreat."
"Sound's like a plan, I'll meet up with you in ten minutes!" Revan said and Marik nodded, "Copy, see you in ten," He said and cut the link, he then turned toward the Mandalorian.
"Continue the evacuation as planned, I'll rendevous with Basilisk Squad and take down Stratu myself, understood?" he said and the Mandalorian nodded.
"Yes Alore," he said and left Marik to perform his duties.
"Are you sure about doing this?" Marik looked behind him to see Zule standing there.
He nodded "It has to be done." He said. "If we take him out, it may demorilize the Nationalist forces long enough for us to get everyone out of here."
"But...theirs a whole army out there!" Zule said. "If things go badly you could..."
Marik smirked a bit "Didn't know you cared miss..." He said, but then he remembered he never got her name.
Zule blushed a bit "X-Xiss." She said, with a bit of a stutter. "Zule Xiss."
Marik grinned, "Nice name for a Zeltros," he said, and Zule's cheeks turned bright red in anger.
"I'm a Falleen, not a Zeltros," she growled out, and Marik blinked a bit at that.
"You sure?" he said looking at Zule more closely, "You don't like a Falleen. You're too pretty to look like one," he said and Zule sighed in exasperation while blushing at the same time.
"I-It's a genetic quirk," she said, and Marik shrugged "If you say so," he said. "Hope to see ya later Zule." and with that he took off with his Jetpack.
She heard a giggling behind her and turned to see Kass Tod and Mak Lotor standing their, grinns on both of their faces. "Looks like Zule's gonna have a boyfriend soon." Kass teased, causing the Falleen to blush.
"S-Shut up Kass." She said, "And what makes you think I'll have a boyfriend, especially him of all people, when it's against the Jedi Code!"
Kass just shook her head at that, "The code may forbid attachments. But you know what? They sound more like...guidelines than actual rules, so the hell with it," Zule's eyes widen in shock at that.
"H-how can you can say that Kass? You can expelled from the Order for that!" she shouted, and Kass just rolled her eyes, "If it means being with Mak, then so be it" She said as she grabbed Mak's hand, who gladly accepted it much to Zule's shock. "After all, even though the Code says that there is no emotion yet peace, we all know that's not true. We all feel emotions, and if we just killed them off...how would that make us better than the Sith? I love Mak, and he loves me. And that's all that matters to us." And with that, the pair left Zule to assist in the evacuation, leaving her alone to her thoughts about what they just said.
Meanwhile, one Anakin Skywalker heard the whole conversation, and he agreed with Kass' words completely, his thoughts on his Angel back on Coruscant.
'Padme,' was his thought before he went to help with the evacuation.
Marik landed on the muddy Jabiim soil in a crouched pose, then rose up, his gaze upon the approaching leader of the Nationalist Army, along with his Assassination Droids.
Alto stopped as the Mandalorian landed not to far from his position, and rose to his feet. "I assume that you are the one in charge?" He asked the Mandalorian, who nodded "Yes, and you must be Altos?" He asked.
Alto smirked, but nodded "I am," he said. "But I must ask what your name is. Which is...?"
At that, Marik removed his helmet, which revealed a young man in his early twenties with dark brown military cut hair, and mild dark mahagony eyes.
"Orar...Marik Mereel Orar," he said as he dropped his helmet in the mud. Alto was not shocked in the least that the Mandalorian looked so young, since Mandalorians, with the exception of the so-called New Mandalorians, train their children from a young age. It was then a memory clicked into his mind.
"Ah, yes, I remember now. The HoloNet News five years back told of how a Mandalorian took down a Rogue Hutt and his army with the assistance of three others," Alto said in rememberance, and Marik smirked. "My first big-time bounty." He said.
"An Impressive feat," Altos admitted. "But...I am not some run-in-the-gun Mercenary like those Thugs. I'm not gonna be so easy to take down, and neither are these Droids."
"We'll see about that." Marik said as he drew his Vibro-knives. "Time to see what your made of, Alto."
Alto grinned as he drew his sword, "Oh you will see young Marik...you will see," he got into a stance as the droids prepared to follow their commander's orders. Then as if acting as a signal to start, a lightning bolt flashed and the two charged at each other.
Before the droids could think of joining Alto they assaulted by a hail of blaster fire. The Droids looked to where the fire was coming from, and saw a squad of Mandalorian's and a Clone in Phase I ARC Trooper custom colored Black and Red armor.
"BRING IT ON!" Revan shouted as he fired his DC-15S Blaster at the Droids non-stop. The Mandalorians joined in, firing their choice of weapons at the droids.
"Alright Basilisk Squad! Give 'em everything you got!" Zeke yelled as he fire his WESTAR M-5 at the Droids blasting the head clean off of one.
Back with Marik and Alto, the former block and overhead strike from the latter's sword with his vibro-knives. Marik then kicked the leader of the Jabiimi Nationalist in the gut forcing the older man back.
"OOF!" Alto grunted as he placed his hand where Marik kicked him, "Alright, I'll admit, that was a good hit." He said, with a grin. "Looks like your stronger than I though you would be. But your still not gonna win."
Marik said nothing as he simply prepared for Alto's next attack, and he didn't have to wait long as the Jabiimi used his repulsorlift skates to glide across the mud.
'Okay, that's cheating!' Marik thought as dodged the sword that almost decapitated him, 'But, like they say, all's fair in war,'
While Marik was in a duel to the death with Alto, Revan and Basilisk Squad were slugging it out with the A-series droids.
"I'll give them some credit, these Droids are better than the average Clanker." Revan admitted as he fired his DC-17 Blaster Pistols at the Assassin Droids, as said Droids returned fire.
"A Clanker's a clanker." Zeke said as he and his team opened up, nailing a trio of the Droids in a hail of Blaster Fire. "No matter how many upgrades they make on them"
Revan could only smirk as he dodged a swipe from an Assassin droid, grabbed it's outstretched arm and brought the elbow joint down on his knee and bust the arm off. Then using it as a club, bashed the head of the droid destroying on of it's photo-receptors.
"I couldn't agree more," He said as he tossed the arm away, and picked up his DC-15S and continued fighting. "Now let's finish these guys off! Marik might need our help!"
"Agreed!" Zeke said as they continued to finish off the droids.
Marik kept blocking Alto's sword strikes, but he knew sooner or later that his luck will run out. He already sported a cut on his left face cheek, a busted lip, and his leg was bleeding a bit from a stab wound. Alto had injuries of his own including a black eye, a busted nose when Marik head-butted him, and it was bleeding profusely, he also sported a deep cut on his left arm and leg.
"Impressive, you really are worthy of being a Mandalorian," Alto complimented, "But I will be victorius, and I will mount your head on a pike,"
Marik just chuckled a bit "Seriously?" He asked. "You are one messed-up asshole, you know that?"
Alto just growled as he intensified his attack. Marik cursed knowing he wasn't gonna last much longer against this guy.
However, then Alto then delivered a round-house kick into Marik's torso, sending him back a few feet forcing him on his back.
"NOW YOU DIE MANDALORIAN!" Alto Shouted as he jumped up with his sword ready to stab Marik in the chest...
Only for him to suddenly fly backwards into a dying tree, crashing into it. Marik blinked in suprise 'What the hell?' He thought, but his thought was answered as the Jedi from earlier, Zule Xiss arrived with her Lightsaber in hand.
"Now we're even!" Zule said over her shoulder with a grin as she jumped forward to fight Alto.
Alto groaned as he got up brushing the debris from the tree off him, he then looked up and saw Zule heading towards him.
"So the little Padawan wants to play, huh?" Alto growled as he drew his blaster pistol and fired at Zule who just blocked it with her lightsaber, "Nice try, old man!" Zule shouted, and Alto growled at the female Falleen.
"I'm not done yet, Jedi!," He shouted as he then reached for his belt, and took out a Thermal Detonator. He activated it and tossed it forward, and it landed just under Zule's feet.
"SHIT!" Zule swore as she jumped up, just in time before the Grenade detonated. However she turned around just in time to see Alto running at her, his sword in hand ready to stab her.
Zule didn't have the time to bring her lightsaber to bear, instead however she rose her mechanical arm which caught his attack, thankfully. Unfortunately the attack pierced her Arm's armor and sparks flew from the damage.
The arm was still functioning, so Zule used it to Grab Alto's sword and yanked it out of his grasp. And with her lightsaber in her right hand, she managed too stab Alto clean into the chest. Alto's eyes widen in shocked pain as he saw the green blade in his chest. He looked up and saw Zule's face set in a indifferent stare, her green eyes however, were like a fire that would burn everything it touched. He then coughed up blood, as one sentence passed throught his lips.
"Urk! J-just...casualties of... war," and with that, Alto Stratus slumped down to the muddy ground, dead.
Zule stood there for a moment, looking at his corpse before sighing and deactivating her lightsaber. 'That...was for everyone who died.' She thought as she closed her eyes for a moment. She then felt a gloved hand on her shoulder, and she tensed but once she sensed who the individual's presence was, she relaxed knowing who it was.
"You did good," Marik said and Zule only nodded a bit, the Mandalorian then looked at the sword still imbedded in Zule's prosthetic arm, which was now leaking lubricants, "We're gonna have to get that checked out,"
Zule nodded, but knew that this prosthetic was good as busted. She then opened her eyes and looked at the sword for a moment before grasping it and pulling it out. The arm went limp after that.
"Careful! It could spark and catch the lubricants on fire," Marik said in concern, but Zule just smiled "It's alright." She said. "I've had worse...are you alright though?"
"Nothing some Bacta can't fix." Marik said, and it was then that Revan and the Basilisk team ran up to them, now finished with the assassination droids.
Revan instantly noticed the body of Alto "So...he's dead?" he asked, and Zule nodded.
"Ya...he's dead." She said. Revan nodded and Zeke faced Marik "Sir, I just got word from the others." he said. "All of the Jabiim Loyalists have been evacuated, and the evacuation of the last Clones and Jedi is almost complete. We should head back now unless we wanna stick around for when the Sep's show up."
"Good idea," Marik said and after retrieving his helmet from one of the Basilisk team, he turned to Zule and gave a tired grin, "Shall we then?"
Zule returned the grin, "Oh yes," she said and the group made their way back to the Extraction Point, and got on the last GR-75 Transport, and regrouped with the Ne'tra Kad Fleet in orbit, which made the jump to lightspeed.
Three days later
Chancellor's Office, Coruscant
"...And it is with great honor that I present Marik Mereel Orar, and Zule Xiss with the Medal of Valor," Chancellor Palpatine said as he presented the said Metals too the two. "For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of their lives above and beyond the call of duty."
The people inside the office applauded the two, while Holo droids recorded the event. Among the people gathered were Jedi Masters Yoda, Shaak Ti, Adi Gallia, Arligan Zey, and Knights Siri Tachi, Aayla Secura, and Quinlan Vos, along with the other surviving members of the Padawan Pack, which included Mak, Kass, Aubrie, Anakin, and Sagan.
All of the non-Jedi in the crowd, included Revan and the rest of the Null-ARCs, Marik's mother the widow Freya Mereel Orar who dressed in her own grey with green trim Shock Trooper armor, her copper brown shoulder blade length hair tied in a high pony-tail, and Kal Skirata who's grin threatened to split his face as he saw Marik being awarded a medal. Even the Chancellor's Aides Mas Amedda and Sly Moore were also present.
"Thank you sir." Zule said, but Palpatine shook his head "It is not needed," he said. "Thanks too you, not only have you saved thousands of Jabiim Citizens loyal to the Republic, but you also saved many Clones who will be able to fight future battles against the Separatists."
"Speaking of that, Chancellor," Marik spoke up "If you don't mind me asking, what will happen to the Clones that survived the battle?"
The Chancellor rubbed his chin in thought at that, "Hmm, I assume they will be transferred to different units, or sent back to Kamino to serve as instructors," Palpatine responded, and nobody noticed the silent glare Kal was sending his way. Marik was also in thought, and a moment later a grin threatened to split his face, "I think I may have a better idea, your Excellency,"
Palpatine quirked an eyebrow at that, "Oh? And what would that be?" he asked wondering where the young Mandalorian was going with this.
"Instead of assigning them too different Units, why not send them all to a Single Unit?" Marik said. "Sir, all of those Clones have seen Hell on Jabiim, and they didn't survive just out of luck. They had to fight for their very lives, and weather or not they were Rookiee's before, they are Veterans now. If you send them too different Units, then they will be working with other Clones that may not have the same experience they had. But if they were all in one unit, that would be a whole Unit of Veterans, No Rookiee's. And they will be a force to reckon with."
The Chancellor seemed to think it over, "Hmmm, yes, that could work," he said, "But who will be in command?"
Marik's grin never left his face,"With your permission," he said, "I wish to volunteer to command the unit," that caused everyone to gasp, even the Jedi, and Zule looked at him with a suprised expression.
"Any Particular Reason Why?" Palpatine asked, curious. Marik just shrugged "I was trained by Jango Fett Himself on Kamino, sir." He said. "And I've trained with many of the Clones, including the Null ARC's like Revan. I've come to think of them as my brothers, and I would do anything for them."
Palpatine thought about it for a moment "I don't know," he said. "Usually Jedi are ones to command forces into battle, not that I don't trust you of course."
Then Zule spoke up "Sir, what if a Jedi were placed in joint command of the Clones with Marik?" She offered. The Chancellor thought about that.
"Hmmm, yes, that could work. Do you have objections to that, Young Orar?" he asked and Marik shook his head at that, "None at all," he said, "Infact, I know the right person for the job," he finished with a grin.
He looked at Zule, as did everyone else, and the Falleen blinked in confusion for a bit until realization dawned on her.
"Whoa, wait, ME?" she said in shock,"Why would you want me?"
"Because I've seen you fight." Marik said. "You saved my life back there at Jabiim, and managed to kill Alto mostly by yourself. If I were to be placed in joint command with anyone, it would be you."
Zule for a moment, said nothing. She was simply shocked that anyone would actually trust her to such a degree.
Then she sighed "I...Suppose it would be alright." She said before turning to the Masters "That is, if its alright with them."
Master Yoda decided to speak, "True, almost slipped to the Darkside you did, but saved you Young Marik has," he said causing Marik to scratch his head in embarasment, "Also, interesting things this idea will bring I sense," the aged Jedi Master said. And Shaak Ti stepped forward as well.
"I agree with Master Yoda on this well," the Togruta Jedi Master said.
"As do I," Adi Gallia said in agreement as well. Arligan Zey just grinned and nodded.
Marik then thought of something, "We'll also need a second-in-command if one of us is injured," he said and turned toward Revan, "And I know the right man for the job,"
he said, and Revan grinned as he turned to Kal, who nodded.
"Say no more, buddy." Revan said, the grin never leaving. "I look forward working with ya again."
"Just make sure the Idiot here comes back in one piece!" Ordo said, and Revan just rolled his eye.
"Laugh it up Ordo, laugh it up," Revan said while the rest of the Null's snickered. Palpatine then nodded as he spoke, "Then it is decided!" he said and everyone gave him his attention, "What would you call this unit, Mr. Orar?," he asked Marik who then went into a thinking pose.
"I believe, the 26th Assault Infantry Battalion, because that will be our specialty," the Mandalorian said, and the others agreed with that.
"Very good," Palpatine said, "Congradulations then, Senior Commander Orar, and Jedi Commander Xiss, you are now in command of the newly annointed 26th Assault Infantry Battalion,you will need a ship of course, but I believe I have the answer for that. The Commando Team Delta Squad has recently recovered the RAS Prosecutor,an Acclamator I-class Assault Ship from Trandoshan Mercenaries. Though some of the crew survived, only a few hundred were still onboard, alive. I believe it will suit your needs?"
Marik smiled "I believe it will be perfect, and the crew would make a welcome addition to the Battalion." He said, and Palpatine nodded.
"It will head to a nearby shipyard to recieve repairs, but it's still functional," Palpatine said, and Marik nodded in agreement at that, "A half repaired ship will do, but a fully repaired ship works better I always say," Marik said and everyone in the room nodded in agreement with him.
"And with this decision that concludes the ceremony," Palpatine declared, "and I wish the best of luck to your New Battalion Commander Xiss, Commander Orar."
"Thank you sir." The two said as they bowed respectfully, and turned to the others.
"Well, congrat's Adiik." Kal said. "I hope that it all works out for ya."
"Same here, Zule." Kass said, smiling. "I wish we could stay with you though..."
"Hey, we're the Padawan Pack! We always stick together!" Sagan said, it was then Siri came up to them.
"Congradulations to both of you, you especially Zule," Siri commented and Zule smiled a bit as she nodded in respect, Siri then turned her gaze to Aubrie.
"As for you Aubrie," She said catching the younger Padawan's attention.
"Y-yes, Master Tachi," Aubrie stuttered a bit.
"I have some good news for you." Siri said. "Since Master Windu is fighting on the front lines, he has requested me to be your Master Until he returns to give you your Advance Training."
Aubrie blinked owlishly before she smiled "Thank you Master Tachi!" She said, and Siri smiled and turned to Sagan, "And as for you Sagan," she said making the boy stand at attention, making the woman shake her head in amusement, "Master Zey here has also taken into an interest in training you as his new Padawan," She said making the young man's eyes widen, and he looked at Zey who nodded.
"It...It will be an honor Master Zey!" Sagan said excitedly, and Arligan just grinned at him, "Don't mention it," he said. "I heard about what you managed to do on Jabiim in taking down quite a few Battle Droids down before Ne'tra Kad showed up. I see a lot of potential in you Sagan, and I look forward to being your Master."
"Ya, with any luck he'll turn out just like Bardan!" Kal said, and a small sad chuckle came out from Arligan, as he remembered his former Padawan, "Yeah, how's he doing these days?" he asked the Mandalorian, who smirked.
"He's doing good," he said, "I'll tell you about it later once we find a place to celebrate,"
"If I can make a suggestion," Everyone turned to Anakin, "Maybe you can try Dex's Diner in CoCo Town. Dex makes the best food for all species in the galaxy,"
Kal looked at Marik, who shrugged "Sounds good to me!" He said, turning to Zule "You wanna come Zule?" He asked.
Zule smiled, but shook her head. "Sorry, but no." She said. "I should really head back to the Temple." Marik shrugged at that, "Suit yourself, any of you wish to join," he said motioning to the rest of the Padawan Pack, and the other Jedi.
"I don't see why not?" Mak said and Kass nodded.
"I was planning to see Dex anyway," Siri said.
"Sure, why not?" Arligan said, shrugging and Sagan nodded.
"Well then, come on! We're burning daylight here!" Kal shouted and the others chuckled as they all left Palpatine's office.
At the Jedi Temple with Zule
The Jedi Padawan was in her quarters meditating. In the past she either too abrasive, or vain to even think think of meditation. But now, much to the shock of her peers, she was doing what she disliked most.
The reason for this change was her thoughts on her future co-Commander of the recently established 26th Battalion.
She couldn't help but think back to how he saved her, not only from that crashing AT-AT, but also from falling to the Darkside. He showed her what she was doing was wrong, and for that she was thankful for.
Her mind then drifted to what Kass said, but she shook her head to get away from it 'I just met the guy a few days ago!' She thought. 'Sure he seems nice and all, but...well...' She then sighed. 'Get it together, Zule.' She thought.
She then stood and head to the refresher to clean up before turning in for the night. Deciding she'll think about it in the morning.
Meanwhile at Dex's Diner
Arligan and Kal were sitting at one of the vacant tables of Dex's Diner so they could talk in peace, while everyone else was celebrating. Marik's mother was telling Sagan and Aubrie about her exploits and how she met Marik's father Matthias, and the younger Jedi Padawans listened intently.
"Wow..." Sagan said. "Marik's dad sounds really cool!" Freya chuckled a bit "Yes, he was a very strong Warrior." She said. "People would often compare him to Jaster before he died."
The two younglings gave sad looks at that, "Oh. How did he die?" Sagan said in a sympathetic tone. Freya just smiled sadly at that.
"He died protecting me and Marik from the Death Watch, who were seeking to destroy the Mereel line forever," she said and nobody notice Marik tense at that, "Marik was only a few weeks old at the time,"
"Oh, I'm...sorry." Sagan said, lowering his head. "I...Shouldn't have asked-"
"Don't worry about it," Freya said, shaking her head. "I actually enjoy talking about him, because telling others about our stories makes it so that his memory will always live on."
Marik seemed to sigh a bit before finishing his Corellian soda.
While Freya continued to talk to the younglings, Arligan and Kal were talking about a certain former Jedi-turned Mandalorian.
"I see, so he finally found someone to live with, eh?" Arligan said as he drank his cup of Jawa juice. Kal nodded at that.
"Yep, and she's a Pantoran, very beautiful. But also, a damn good fighter if what happened on Odacer Faustin was anything Bardin described," at that Arligan eyes widen as he spat his drink out.
" *Cough, cough*...Odacer Faustin? What in the blazes was he doing there?" he said in shock.
"They were engaged by some Pirates who forced them to Crash on the planet." Kal said. "Let's just say what they found on the planet wasn't a pretty sight. They barley managed to escape using some old transport they found."
Mak listened in to what they were saying "Umm, what's Odacer Faustin?" He asked.
"Back during the Cold War with the Sith Empire," Arligan said. "A Sith Academy was set up on that Planet by a Dark lord of the Sith. However during the war, the academy went dark, and anyone who went in, never came back out." Mak and Kass gulped at that. "Remind us to NEVER go there in our lives, ok?" Kass said, her skin paling at what could be there on that planet. Mak wasn't fairing any better.
"Oh don't worry, I will," Arligan agreed, "You youngsters have too much talent to waste your lives on that Ice Cube,"
Eventually, everyone had to head back home, and they left Dex's Diner. Marik meanwhile walked through the streets until he reached a spot where he could easily see the GAR Headquarters.
'So...now I'm a commader of a GAR Battalion.' He thought, and then smirked 'And I got a hot lookin' orange-skinned Jedi lady as my co-commander,' he shook his head at that, 'Where did THAT come from?' he thought but could only chuckle at that as he continued to look at the Headquarters. He didn't have illusions that he will not bring all his men back alive, but damn it he sure will try.
Sighing, he looked up in the sky.
"Starting next week," he said to himself, "Things are gonna be different," with that he walked back to the hotel where his mother was, and awaiting a new day tomorrow.
Timeskip, One Week Later
The Clone Troopers of the newly established 26th Assault Infantry Battalion stood at attention behind the repaired and refitted Acclamator-I-class Assault Ship, the RAS Prosecutor.
Marik and Zule stood in front of all of those Clones with Sagan, Aubrie, their new masters, along with Kass, Mak, Anakin, and Revan. "Well, here we are." Revan said to Marik. "The beginning of our new future...you gonna say something to e'm Marik?"
Marik grinned a bit as he stepped forward. As he stepped forward a trio of LAAT/i Gunships flew overhead.
"Look around you," he began, "Here in the 26th, we have a squad from the 12th Battalion. Another from the 402nd Legion. All brothers,"
"Most if not all of you have suffered from discrimination from officers of the Republic Navy because of how you were born. But for you and me now, all of that is gone, we are moving into the Valley of the Shadow of Death. Where you will watch the back of the Brother next to you, and he will watch yours. You will not care about how he was born, where he was from originally."
"They say we're leaving Home...we're going to what home for what it was going to suppose to be. So let us understand the situation. We will be going into battles, against a tough and determined enemy."
"I cannot promise you that we will all come back home alive. But this, I swear, before you and before the Force, that when we go into battle, I will be the first to set foot on the field, and I will be the last to step off, and I will leave no one behind, dead or alive, we will all come home together...so help me god."
With that he turned to Revan and nodded to him and the Null-ARC nodded back as he stepped and stood at attention and gave the order, "Battalion! MOVE OUT!" he shouted and the clones begin to march up the Prosecutor's boarding ramp as Marik regrouped with the others. Anakin had a grin on his face that showed he was impressed.
"Nice speech. But where did the 'So help me god' come from?" he said and Marik shrugged.
"Don't know, just came to me for some reason," Marik said with a grin. "Now come on, let's get on this ship. Their ain't no rest for the wicked."
A few minutes later
on the RAS Prosecutor Bridge
Marik and the others entered the bridge of the Prosecutor. It was like any other bridge on a Acclamator-I, but when they caught sight of the ship's new Captain, they were suprised.
"Captain Gillmunn?" Marik said in suprise as the said person turned to them, dressed in a Republic Navy Uniform and his brown beard and hair cut in a military fashion. When he turned his green eyes landed on the others, more specifically Marik and Zule, he grinned.
"Hello there Marik, didn't expect me to see me here, huh?" The Jabiimi Loyalist leader said, as Marik still looked shocked at this.
"What are you doing here?" He asked, "Not that I'm not glad to see you!" Orliss chuckled a bit "Well, when the Republic and Ne'tra Kad forces managed to evacuate myself and the rest of the Loyalists off of Jabiim, I along with other members of the Loyalists asked how we may be of continued service too the Republic. So, due to my skills I showed in the battle, I was placed in Command of this ship, imagine my surprise when I saw that you and Miss Xiss were on the roster!"
"The Chancellor picked you to be captain of the Prosecutor?," the young Mandalorian asked and Orliss seemed to shrug.
"I may not be much as a ship Captain, but I can manage," he said with a grin, "Besides, I owe you and Miss Xiss here for taking down Alto for me,"
Zule seemed to blush at the praise, "I-It was nothing sir, just doing my duty," She said.
Orliss smiled "Well, Regardless, me and the Loyalists owe you and Marik for what you've done for us." He said. "And I aim to repay you." He then turned to Marik "Now, Commander, shall we launch?" He asked, with a grin. "The Harbinger and it's fleet is waiting to join us in Orbit, as well as the Jedi Master who will be joining us as well."
Marik could only grin at that, "By all means Captain, proceed," he said, and Orliss nodded and turned to the bridge crew and told to prepare for launch. It was then Arligan asked something.
"By the way, just who is the Jedi Master that's meeting us?" Arligan asked. Orliss just grinned "John Cypher." He said, and Arligan's eyes went wide, as did the eyes of most of the other Jedi and Marik.
"No way...The John Cypher?" Marik asked, "The Jedi Starfighter Ace?" He has heard many things about the famous Jedi Ace, nick-named the 'Demon Lord'. He was one of the Jedi's top Starfighter pilots, and he was the one who helped Anakin train on how to become a starfighter pilot. He was known by his Custom Crimson/Black trimmed Delta-7 Aethersprite-class light interceptor, which customizations inspired Anakin to customize his own Starfighter, the Azure Angel based on his fighter.
Orliss grinned "The one and only." He said. "He's joining us with his own Company of Clones on a Prototype EF76 Nebulon B-class Escort Frigate, the Red Dawn. And on top of that, Ne'tra Kad also sent in another ship, a CR-100 FarStar-class Assault Corvette."
The others eyes widen at this.
"But, I thought those ships were not suppose to be out for another 5 years or so!" Siri said, shocked that these new ships were built so quickly.
"Apparently the Corellian Engineering Corporation, Kuat Shipyards and dozens of other Corporations are using this war as a way to test new models," Marik theorized, "Not that I'm complaining. I've seen the basics of the EF76, and it seems pretty impressive. And the CR-100 was based off of that upgraded CR90, the FarStar, and its pretty effective too."
Revan nodded his head at that, "Yeah, no kidding. They turned that corvette into a heavily armed Starfighter Carrier," he said and everyone nodded as they heard of the famous ship. Marik then took a deep breath and exhaled.
"Well, we better get underway. Captain Gillmunn, if you may?" Marik asked, and Orlin grinned.
"With pleasure my boy, with pleasure," He said as he turned to the helm. "You heard him! Let's get moving!" He said.
"Yes sir!" The Clone at the Helm said as he began the launch sequence. "Launching in 5...4...3...2...1...launching now."
The massive engines of the Acclamator-I class Assault ship roar to life as the boarding ramp slowly closed and the Prosecutor eased itself out of it's dock and lifted into the Coruscanti sky and into space. All the while it is joined by other ships.
Ahead of them was the fleet they will soon be joining forces with. The Steel Hawk's fleet of their Venator-class Star Destroyer, and their three Marauder-class Corvette Escorts were there, along with a EF76 Nebulon B-class Escort Frigate, and a CR-100 FarStar-class Corvette.
"Open a channel to the Harbinger." Marik said, and the captain nodded as he activated the Communications. "Harbinger, this is the RAS Prosecutor, are you receiving us?"
The hologram activated and the image of Calista Shae showed itself, "This the Harbinger, read you loud and clear, Prosecutor," the image said and Marik grinned.
"That's good to hear Cas, you have a spot open for us?" he asked and Calista nodded, "Yup, just park yourselves right here between the Harbinger and the Red Dawn. Welcome to the 9th Assault Fleet you guys."
"Thanks Cast, see you soon." Marik said, and cut the link, "Well Captain, you heard her,"
Orlin nodded and ordered the helm to proceed to the spot and placed themselves portside of the Harbinger, while starboard with the Red Dawn. Then the fleet ofships moved away from Coruscant and after recieving Hyperspace coordinates to where they're, the Fleet jumped to lightspeed.
It was the beginning of an adventure for Marik, Zule, and the Clones of the 26th Assault Infantry Battalion.
Patriot-112: And cut! This ends the pilot chapter of "The 26th,"!
117Jorn: Certainly took a while.
Patriot-112: That it did! But at least we have it done now!
117Jorn: Ya, your right. So what's coming up next?
Patriot-112: Next chapter is the mission to rescue Obi-Wan Kenobi, and ARC Trooper Alpha-12 from the clutches of Asajj Ventress!
117Jorn: YES! Can't wait!
Patriot-112: Yep, and if you guys want to see what the clones of the 26th will look like in the future, got to my Deviantart profile: h t t p : / patriot-112 . deviantart . com! Remove the spaces. See you next time!