The Arda Campaign
Chapter 1: A Strange New World
The Clone Wars rage on. The Separatist forces wage brutal warfare against the Loyalist forces of the Galactic Republic and the Jedi order has assigned to the hastily but incredibly useful Grand Army of the Republic, a clone army, their Jedi Knights to act as generals in the all consuming conflict. The war has entered into its second year and the merciless cyborg General by the foreboding name of Grievous has taken full command of the CIS forces under his master the Dark Lord of the Sith Darth Tyranus. Otherwise known as the fallen Jedi Count Dooku. A killer of Jedi, Grievous is feared and renowned as being the symbol of fear, of death, and the dark face of the Separatist's vast droid armies.
In an effort to be rid of the vicious general who has killed many brave Jedi, the Republic has sent a task force to end the marauding General. Republic intelligence has tracked him to the Elom system in the Outer-Rim. At the head of this task force are the two heroes of the Republic Jedi Knight Anakin Skywalker and Master Obi-Wan Kenobi. Dubbed the Hero with no Fear and the Negotiator respectively these two have been given a newly formed fleet to lead in this last stand against Grievous who is reportedly at the head of a massive Separatist fleet in preparation to launch an assault into neighboring and thinly defended allied systems.
The battle had begun. It was as reported and Grievous had indeed been in the command of well over three hundred Confederate warships, and the Republic force was comprised of two hundred up to date vessels of their own that readily engaged Grievous head on. The battle was touch and go, but something has happened. Something that the galaxy, nor any single world were prepared for. As the two fleets tear one another apart a strange electrical storm is forming around them. One that will take the two armies on the adventure for the ages.
Even within this Galaxy Far Far Away...
"Anakin!" Obi-Wan cried as he watched his apprentice maneuver his ship in between a wave of vulture droids. Anakin's ship twirled over an entire squadron and fired into the fray blowing several in the process in a magnificent hail of fire that quickly dissipated in the vacuum of space. The aged Master heard his apprentice shout in glee and spin his ship about happily. A sigh loosed form his lips as he shook his head pulling his own fighter warily alongside his old friend's.
"Don't do that Anakin! You're going to get yourself killed and I cant handle Grievous alone! Not right now anyways."
"Sorry master," Came the younger Jedi over their ship-to-ship comms. "I always forget you have a heart attack every time we fly." The boy said coyly with Obi-Wan counted as a verbal 'grin' as he sped his ship around his master's and fired on another incoming vulture, and the two Jedi angled out of the way of a Venator-class Stardestroyer firing down upon a Separatist Munificent-class star frigate that blew apart brilliantly just as they cleared it together
"I don't hate flying Anakin, but as I have told you many times what you call flying I call suicide! I'd rather you not turn it into murder thank you!" Kenobi cried as he swerved out of the way of another republic fighter speeding past him in the opposite direction.
"Yes Master, I'm sorry Master." Anakin responded with a humored laugh obvious in his voice.
"Oh did I forget to mention that I have a lock on General Grievous' command ship?" Obi-Wan fought the urge to roll his eyes and let loose another faint sigh.
"That information would have been greatly appreciated a few moments ago my friend."
"Sorry Master. Without all your screaming I would have told you sooner, oh excuse me Master-" He cut himself off as he banked his starfighter right in front of Obi-Wan's and fired on an oncoming Tri-fighter. The droid fighter banked up away but Anakin pulled his ETA into a hard upward climb at least by Obi-Wan's view of things. He loosed another hail of bolts that sung through space and cleanly collided with the droid tearing it apart and sending thousands of metal shards blasting apart much like the others before it.
"Blast it Anakin I am not screaming!" Obi-Wan howled only catching himself afterwords and rolling his shoulders as an unseen blush began to cross his face. Anakin only laughed in reply as he sensed rather than saw his old Master catch his own 'slip of the tongue.' he merely puled his ETA back alongside his master's at a somewhat 'higher' elevation than his.
"Come along now Anakin and let's get on the ship and end Grievous' little reign of terror. Sound good to you?"
"Can't say I disagree with you there Master. I look forward to personally making him pay for the lives he's taken thus far. Especially the Jedi lives." He intoned with clear focus but sudden menace.
"Be mindful of your feelings Anakin, don't give into anger." Obi-Wan repeated in near mantra like manner.
"I know master, I know," He replied in exasperation. "But Grievous is a monster, and he needs to be either stopped, arrested or killed. I would just prefer it if he would give me a reason to kill him first." Anakin shrugged in matter-of-fact a tone.
Obi-Wan sighed at his old padawan but decided now was not the time for any more lectures. He was a Knight now after all, and if the Council thought him ready enough for it then...well who was Obi-Wan to endlessly drone on with the same spiel after all these years? Not to mention the obvious hundreds of ships engaging one another all around them and accompanying explosions that tore through space.
"General's Kenobi, and Skywalker, this is Admiral Dallion aboard the Sweeping Dawn, do either of you read me?" A subtle but strongly accented voice came in through the ever active comms. Both Jedi gave only a moments pause as they registered the Admiral.
"We read you admiral what's the situation?" Obi-Wan asked as he and Anakin simultaneously spun the ships out of the way of turbo laser fire from another nearby Venator. Its powerful blasts slamming furiously one after the other into an equally furiously firing Confederate Recusant-class.
"I'm afraid we have a situation Generals." The admiral intoned with a seemingly calm and cool voice. His worry was more sensed by both Jedi than spoken, and thus the both of them felt their brows crease in curious concern.
"What kind of 'situation' are we talking about here, Admiral?" Anakin asked simply.
"The rebel fleet has lost a great many ships thus far Generals. We've estimated at least half their original strength and number remain in action. However, several technicians aboard not one but multiple of our fleet have noted odd readings."
The Jedi shared an unseen but equal look of concern. Even as they dodged and weaved through the chaos of the battle they felt familiar concern well inside of them. Born of enough battles and moments of Confederate desperation to seize the day.
"Have we pinpointed the origins of the readings?" Obi-Wan asked with a slight huff as he maneuvered his ship downwards avoiding a wing of Vultures. A wing Anakin strafed into and released a harsh volley that spread fire over Obi-Wan's descending ETA.
"Yes General, a ship of unknown and previously unseen design we've managed to decode as the 'Unrelenting Force' is tailing General Grievous' command vessel the 'Invisible Hand' as I'm sure you already know it as." Obi-Wan and Anakin pulled in close to one another again and pushed back forwards toward the distant Providence-class battleship. Obi-Wan in particular strained his eyes looking through his viewport as his astromech made a whir of beeps that came in over his internal computer.
"I see it." Anakin chimed in.
"Look far under starboard, Master." Obi-Wan followed instruction and pushed himself up ever so slightly in his seat to see the thin outline of a hulking mass of metal indeed trailing under Grievous' familiar flagship.
"Oh...okay I see it now. Admiral have your analysts any idea what they're up to?"
"What in the blazes?" Obi-Wan intoned flipping his comm switch over a channel only to receive more static from whoever and whatever was screaming its way on it.
"Anakin can you contact Dallion? My comm is having...an issue." Obi-Wan declared in as knowing a voice as he could muster. Machines...he dreaded machines.
"Negative, Master. Artoo says there's comm interference across all channels. I'd just make a guess and say it's related to whatever Dallion was talking about." Obi-Wan shot his eyes down to his own screen to see Arfour had reported essentially the same only moments prior. He sighed in aggravation in response but nodded to himself. He snapped his channel back to the original as he and Anakin raced through the explosive field ever on towards the Invisible Hand.
"Admiral if you can hear me Anakin and I will maintain course for Grievous' ship. Our objective is the same. Try to pull back all forces you can to maintain communications. Kenobi out." Obi-Wan gave response and silenced that particular channel and its ear splitting noises.
"Well things are certainly getting interesting." Obi-Wan cringed as Anakin came in over his comms now sounding through a layer of buzzing.
"Blast it all, I'm reading you terribly."
"Me too Master." Anakin came over the comm even worse than before.
"Alright, well let's get to that ship and get this over with. The sooner the better I should say, my old friend." Obi-Wan intoned diving his ETA down as a sea of debris flew overhead of himself.
"Agreed Master. Should be easier than podracing." Obi-Wan heard his old padawan snort over the comms. Obi-Wan shook his head and kept on track for the hulking Providence-class vessel. He let loose a calming breath and pulled the Force around him. Both to take the edge off of his unspoken unease, and clear his head. Even still though he had to sigh as he glanced right towards Anakin's ETA.
"I've got a bad feeling about this."
(Invisible Hand, Command Bridge)
The hulking white ghost of a figure stood with its hands clasped behind its back. Its back in kind hunched slightly forwards and giving the creature a monstrous skulking appearance even from its back. A cloak hung from across the front of it flowing down its back. Its arms folding it ever so slightly backwards revealing the white and boney metallic legs at its sides.
A piercing yellow danced across the slight reflection of the glass ahead of him. The reflection of his yellow eyes. A miniscule reminder of the body he had once sported. A weaker body of aging replaced with this shell eternal as it may be. It gave him power though, and that is what mattered. That was the calculus needed to win this war. A war that played out as it did thousands of times over these past many months. A blinding menagerie of bursting and bounding lights flew across his field of vision back and forth. The metal that encased he and the thousands of equally metal boots upon this ship rumbled as those lights slammed into it and its protective shields.
A fleet of innumerable fighters danced in the dance of battle, of dogfighting. Droid mind as pitiful as it was versus clone mind, the organic droid mind. Surely better tacticians, but even the greatest tactician gives way to insurmountable numbers. A brief thought of a hulking bug flashed through his mind, and the beast gave a low gravely growl that made his skeletal head shake in an unspoken rage.
"General Grievous sir." That broke his thoughts, or his unbound and mindless brooding. Either way he turned with a notable unease and menace to his clawed step sideways. His yellow subtly glowing yes fell upon the pitiful creature whose equally pitiful voice had called for him. A little Neimoidian, green in hue and with portly a look to him retracted in his Captain's chair at the glare the feared General gave to him.
"What?!" Grievous gave a biting hiss in reply and the alien jumped into his own reply. "Th...th...the Unrelenting Force i...is reporting that is has sufficient build in i...its re...reactor to create the anti-interdiction jump bubble, General...sir." He finished in unsure and frightened a manner. Grievous fought the urge to roll his eyes. This toy of his lord and his scientists did little more than bore him. A periphery on the stage of this war. War was won by battle not grandiose machines! And yet, with each that fell another would rise to take its place and be bigger than the last. A waste, and wasteful still was his presence for this damnable test!
"Then have them fire the thing already!" The general demanded with a seethe and turned his back to the Captain once more.
"I will have the head of whoever thought it right to send me willingly into this 'trap' should this dam machine fail." He declared loud enough for the Captain to wince and fidget in unnerve as he began relaying the General's orders immediately.
The Republic had initiated a massive gravity well generator across the system at hearing of his presence of course. Grievous took but a modicum of pride in that fact were it not seeming he would so easily be caught in the enemy's binds like this. His fleet and himself willing and sitting targets for a tremendous Republican fleet. A reality that struck deep and gave rise to both the General's ire and some other emotion he couldn't bare the thought of. He didn't even dare imagine that he was...afraid. However, as his diamond eyes glanced left and right over the field of vision the Invisible Hand's deck offered him he knew the reality of his situation should the machine fail. They were dead in space. No hospitable planet to land on to escape to. No inbound relief forces, and no hyperspace jump to safety. He, these millions of accursed droids, and that yet unseen Dark Jedi of Dooku's were dead.
To that another, but lower growl loosed from his vocabulator.
This 'Unrelenting Force'was an experimental new ship that according to the wretched scientists that had worked on it would bypass the gravity-well generators of any fleet by creating an anti-gravity well bubble around the fleet. A manner to put simply that would equalize space around them, and only them. Allowing for them to escape any gravity-well and flee. Of course, such a thing a ship could allow for far greater dividends than just pathetic retreat. Grievous saw it as a means to raid the deeper Rims. The Inner-Rim, the Colonies, the Core itself! No localized gravity-wells to keep his forces locked in combat with local fleets. The galaxy would shutter in terror at the endless threat of his impending attack.
If he could still smirk he would. As he imagined loosing a barrage of turbolaser fire on unsuspecting worlds deep into the Core. Their planetary shields not yet raised, their children resting peacefully in their beds. Their sickening senators fattening themselves upon Coruscant and Jedi incapable of defending them. Who then needed the Force when you could rain fire from such heights with such impunity?! Grievous supposed that gave this machine some credit, and gave him some reason to be out here.
Though the truth of it was Dooku merely wanted to be sure the Republic would show. He wanted to be sure they show in force, and they'd show with their interdictors. Their interdictors, their fleet and of course their Jedi. All of them would come and had come when news spread of General Grievous above Elom. The plan had worked, but he still loathed it. Honestly he sometimes wondered if anyone remembered what the difference between a General and an Admiral was. Let alone if they even knew there was one.
"The Unrelenting Force reports green light for execution of the generator, General. They recommend we prepare to make jump into hyperspace just outside of the system, s...sir." The Captain fell into a mumble towards the end.
"Then do so. Execute the machine, and begin preparations for the jump. And stop giving me every meaningless piece of information!" Grievous barked.
"Ye...yes sir! Right away General!" The Neimoidian immediately went to work relaying the go-ahead command and preparing the Invisible Hand for hyperspace jump.
"H...huh?" Grievous felt his eyes narrow as he glanced over should at the muttering of the alien.
"W...wait….these readings aren't right."
"What is it now, Captain?" Grievous seethed turning back on the alien who looked up at him but then back to his armrest console hurriedly and in a clear rush or panic.
"Th...the readings, they're all off! Hyperspace has engaged, bu...bu...but I haven't given it...coordinates. My o...other sy...systems are...n...not re...re..r...res..."
"Responding?!" Grievous howled and the Captain threw his hands over his head. However, Grievous paused as the ship gave a howl all around him. His two quiet and before then barely noted Magnaguards turned their metallic heads upwards as every screen monitored by lesser B1 models began to waver and shake. A strange pained sound loosed from all around them, and for some unknown reason Grievous turned back towards the outward facing viewport. His diamond eyes widened for just a moment, and a bright light exploded around them all.
And then the General saw nothing, for a moment at least.
The two ETAs drew nearer and nearer still to the Providence. The defensive turbolasers along its sides fired randomly, or seemingly so in all directions. They bobbed and weaved, with Anakin obviously seeming more the graceful between the two of them as Obi-Wan grimaced and frowned with every astromech supported turn and spin he took.
"I see this new ship of theirs more clearly Master. A rather bulky looking thing by the looks of it." Came Anakin sounding unnatural and robotic as ever.
"Copy, but let's worry about getting aboard the Invisible Hand more than this ship. We'll deal with it later Anakin."
"Right." Anakin simply replied luckily for Obi-Wan. He wasn't in the mood to sport one of his old padawan's forays in 'saving the day.' Both ETAs swerved back in towards one another and Obi-Wan set his sights squarely on the open through and through docking bay of the Providence.
"Alright Arfour level us out, and do watch those turbolasers." The little astromech beeped away before relaying another warning along his screen in aurebesh.
"What? Anakin, the blasted shields are still up."
"Figured as much, I'll take care of th-" Before Anakin could finish Obi-Wan felt himself thrown into the back of his seat and felt air forced from his lungs.
"What in the blazes?!" Arfour loosed a new and rushed series of chirps and a stream of information flooded across his screen that the Jedi Master could hardly follow.
"I can't...blast it all! Pressure in my ship's...gotten strong."
"Same here, Master." Through the static Obi-Wan could hear the strain in Anakin's voice and he felt concern riddle him as he forced himself forward to read what Arfour was printing on the console.
"Anakin, is Artoo reading what Arfour is? Arfour says he's got failure across multiple sectors of my ship. Plus...hyperspace entry readings, what?" Obi-Wan intoned to himself.
"Say again Mast...can't hear..."
"Blast!" Obi-Wan cursed as his eyes wee then forced upwards. A percussion rippled out through space and the Force sent a new ripple of warning through him. The pressure, some unknown gravity bore down on him within his cockpit and forced him back as he watched a strange but all consuming light wash across his viewport. It seemed to expand outwards at intense and fast a rate from just underneath the Invisible Hand before it thrashed and crashed over and across his field of vision.
"Keep...us steady...Arfour!" The astromech gave a strange beeping whir of worry before a series of commands for the ship came across Obi-Wan's console before he felt his ship give a tremendous lurch forwards and throw him hard back against his seat. His eyes darted around his viewport in rushed a manner, but Obi-Wan felt shock. He could see the familiar rings of hyperspace flying past him and his ship. He managed to pull himself right and lean to look out. Where he in fact could see Anakin's ship blasting forwards through this hyperspace 'tube.'
"I don't think that's normal." He mused aloud before painfully pressing at his comm.
"Anakin? Anakin do you copy?!" A series of muffled yet howling buzzes and electronic whirs met his ear causing another grimace.
"Blast. Alright, Arfour keep us on our current heading. Whatever that may actually be." Arfour gave an affirmative, and Obi-Wan nearly felt sorry for the little droid as its replies seemed just as much, if not more confused than himself. Even still several warnings flared up across his console. Systems were becoming more and more unresponsive as he went. Shielding was reporting immense loss of power, somehow, and the ship gave unnatural metal creaks Obi-Wan was sure meant the things was ripping itself apart. Not only that but his body had begun to shake along with the ship through whatever in the Force's name was happening. He felt a bit of sickness and unease take root in him as he closed his eyes and fought desperately to center himself into the Force. He few heavy intakes and outtakes of breath followed as he labored through this event.
"Oh, flying is for droids!" He gave a cry as the unmistakable sound of a ship buckling under pressure sounded around him. In this moment, as he had done several times before, he tried to calm his mind. Heck if he was to become one with the Force he wanted to be as calm as possible when he did. Though honestly, he didn't think he'd go like this.
Only for Obi-Wan to then feel a sudden and powerful lurch that sent him forwards roughly. His body slammed forwards and he huffed as his seat straps pulled back against his torso pinning him backwards and flopping back into the seat. An aggravated huff loosed before he again closed his eyes and released what frustration was there into the Force.
Obi-Wan opened them again to see space. Not the hyperspace 'tunnel' from before, but actual star shinning space. Not only that, but as he looked dead ahead he felt his brow rise in surprise as a world lay before him. It looked pleasant enough from up here. Blue oceans, and landmass with sprawling green and patches of rough seeming brownish sands and white landscapes of cold ice. Though Obi-Wan had to muse, if even for a moment that they polar regions seemed to dip a bit lower than he thought usual. However, he shook himself and turned right again to see Anakin's ship seeming in free float. Not only that but it showed clear outward signs of sparking and structural damage.
"Master, do you copy?" Anakin came through just as Obi-Wan reached up for his own comm unit. He also came in far more clearly than before. Causing Obi-Wan to sigh and give silent thanks in relief.
"I copy Anakin, thank the Force you're alright. That we're both alright. Any idea what all that was about?"
"Uh, still working on that Master. Although I've got a few pressing issues over here."
"Like what?" Obi-Wan asked as he glanced down at the series of issues his own ship was showing across his screen.
"My console's fried. Before it went out I received too many malfunctions to even begin getting a grasp on the worst of it and...well I can't get Artoo to respond." Obi-Wan gave a low 'ah' of understanding as he looked out and indeed saw the little bulbous head of the astromech look unusually still and unmoving.
"Arfour can you make contact with Artoo?" The astromech gave a slow response before attempting remote communication. Before coming back with a sad whir audible through his ship's internal speakers.
"Arfour says Artoo is definitely offline Anakin. I...wouldn't worry were I you. Whatever that was stressed all our electronics. I'm sure it...he'll be alright once you have a closer look in on him."
"Yeah...yeah you're right, Master." Anakin replied sounding no less dejected and worried. Even Obi-Wan had to admit he felt a tinge of distress. He wasn't one for droids, not normally, but Artoo had for long now proven himself reliable, and no ordinary astromech. All he could do was give an unseen sympathetic half smile and sigh as he flipped one of the switches along his computer.
"Until we have a better idea of what's going on let's try to assess what we can, Anakin. What systems do you have in your ship?" A momentary silence passed them over.
"I'm here Master. Just...give me a sec." Obi-Wan nodded and remained quiet a moment longer.
"Alright, I've got some limited manual control. Steering and propulsion I mean. Obviously, and luckily life support is still kicking, but can't say for how much longer."
"Right." Obi-Wan nodded to himself. As he did so, he came to a sudden realization. His bluish-gray eyes came to a stop over the planet ahead of them, curious as this world may be, and to its name or location he didn't know. However, there was a bigger question on his mind.
"Um Anakin, did you see where General Grievous' ship get to?"
"What? Oh uh no I din-" The younger Jedi was abruptly silence as a tremendous shadow suddenly came across them and their own ships gave a lurch forwards. Trapped in the slight gravitational pull of what they both looked up to see was the hulking figure of the Invisible Hand.
"Found him, Master."
"Yes I can see that Anakin, thank you." Obi-Wan gave a curt response to his apprentice's sarcasm. Only for them to watch as the second ship, the one Dallion had warned them of, the Unrelenting Force followed in close behind and still slightly under and towards the back of the Providence-class. Obi-Wan noted dozens of small fires showing across the entire underside of the Invisible Hand and this new ship. Chunks of metal and smoke flew from the ship sucked away into the vacuum of open space. They were no doubt suffering from the same issues he and Anakin were going through. However, unlike them their ships were heading clearly towards the planet. Its own gravity undoubtedly pulling them inwards. Not helped by the sudden shock and jump from hyperspace and the momentum it creates.
"Oh...oh dear. Um, Anakin-"
"I can see Master, hold on!" Anakin cut him off as their ships gave a stronger lurch as they were pulled in by both ships being tugged towards the inevitable decent. All as a renewed rumble slowly but surely began to take hold of their ships and Arfour began whirring and whining worriedly.
"Yes Arfour I know!" Obi-Wan declared snapping wildly at his ship's propulsion ignition to no avail.
"Alright, Master activate all inertial dampeners, and set emergency flaps to reentry position. Use the emergency manual switches if you need to. It's gonna be a rocky ride in."
"Right, blast it all." Obi-Wan cursed again for what felt to be the millionth time today. He couldn't remember curing this much actually, but all the same, with adrenaline pounding through him he followed his friend's far more knowing instructions and began placing the ship into a state ready for emergency reentry into the atmosphere. Arfour began activating what he could alongside Obi-Wan, and the Jedi Master caught Anakin's ship showing signs of readying for the same operations.
"Now follow me into the planet's atmosphere, Master. And uh...strap in and grab onto something maybe." Anakin called as the two ships began their decent towards this unknown world, and for the second time in but a few short minutes both of their ships began shaking horrendously around them
"Oh I have a really bad feeling about this!" Obi-Wan called as the four ships made their fiery decent.
The world is called Arda, at least to some. To others it was known as Earth, but the name is not important. What is important is that this world knows nothing of the happenings in the galaxy beyond. Indeed this world lies in a very safe and uncharted region of the Outer-Rim, but today this world of magic of Elf, Men, Orc, Goblin, Wizard, and even Hobbit will have their eyes opened to new and extraordinary things that will rival the magic of their fair world. For a war is brewing a war over a one ring. The Ring of Power, forged by a Dark Lord in the fires of Orodruin. The Mountain of Doom, Mount Doom as it is commonly known.
This ring had for so long been in the hands of a Hobbit as they call themselves. Happy folk who prefer to keep to themselves then stick their noses into the world of the "big-folk." yet its time had come and gone, and now it found itself by one step or another, by happy chance or unhappy fortune in the hands of another.
Now another small Hobbit by the name of Frodo Baggins of the Shire was being whisked away to the Elven city of Imladris, to Rivendell. For he had been injured by the deadliest servants of this Dark Lord in his quest to find his most precious ring. These dark lieutenants were the Nazgûl, or better known as the Ringwraiths.
A Fellowship would be formed, a quest set out upon, and a war fought, but now something was happening that none had foreseen. None save maybe for Ilúvatar himself perhaps.
For the city of Minas Tirith was brought to a sudden halt from the normal bustle of the many layers of the White City. As a great rumble that drowned out the explosions and rumblings of Mount Doom forced all its inhabitants to look to the heavens above as a great cylindrical object of gray shining hue and alight with surrounding flame bound its way across the skies from the south northward towards those blackened mountains. It grew lower to the ground and howled as it burned through the skies and all looked in awe, wonderment, and no small sense of terror, for none had seen such a sight in their lives. This great thing was the Invisible hand, and it descended to the planet below and it beyond the Mountains of Shadow, and all from Minas Tirith to Osgiliath watched as it faded from sight only to be followed by a great and terrible trembling rumble from afar. Many gasped and some shook where they stood while some of wary and weary nerve even screamed in sudden fright. Yet, given some more time they saw no more, and tentatively these people would return to their daily lives. Unknowing of what brewed beyond those fell mountains.
For beyond their sight and in the fiery land of Mordor the realm of Sauron the Great, ships crashed and skidded along the dead and empty valley of shadow with a great metal howl and sound of cracking and gnashing rock. Across the northern region of Nurn, and near to the plains of Gorgoroth they planted themselves and sent all in the land into confusion and daunted gaze. The great fiery Eye watched as these strange things did this and its pupil narrowed. For the Dark Lord would suffer no sudden surprise nor entry into his lands. This would call for action, and in time there would be sent some from among his miserable lot to investigate.
Following the flagship came the smaller one which landed to the south of the larger with an equal rumble and howl. Inside these ships was kept army unlike anything this world had seen before, or would ever seen again, and it had landed in the realm of shadow.
Meanwhile, two Jedi starfighters burned across the skies of Arda, passing over the hills and lands of the Horse Lords of fair Rohan Above and beyond the Misty Mountains, and even over mighty Orthanc now churning in smoke and malice. A man garbed in white caught but an eery glimpse, and in his eyes grew a callous gaze and narrowing of brow and lid. All the same the Jedi guided their ships into a controlled crash. Perhaps by fate, or by dumb luck their ships slammed into a small valley. Each churning dirt and toppling tree and throwing rock. Within each, both men were thrashed, their bodies rumbled and rocked until both went dark from unforeseen injuries. Each brow slammed against something within their metal holds, but otherwise unhurt. They were in luck, for their vessels would come to smokey stops, thrust to the dirt just to the outskirts of the Last Homely House. Outside fair Rivendell.
The two ships would land in the forests that surrounded the Elven outpost, and it would be a great loud crack that would guide the Elves to the site of the fallen contraptions. There, but a few elves armed with bow and arrow and little more would find two men hung silent, and unconscious within seat surrounded by a thing of metal. A glass window, or door was atop them both. Open and inviting or expecting those within to take freedom, they could hardly do so with their minds lost to the realm of the waking. An incessant sound coming from where one of them sat. Like a loud chirp of a bird, but unnatural and strange to the fair and strong ears of the elves who nonetheless approached these men.
"What do you think these are?" Asked one of the Elven sentries as he hoisted his quiver behind his back along with his longbow. He gave a curious cock of his head as he lowered himself to the metal his right foot rested upon. He placed his hand to the outer shell and felt a warmth and smelled a strange metallic smell.
"I don't know, but let us take these men to see lord Elrond. I feel that he is the only one that may know who or what these men are. Come, grab that one there with the facial hair, and I shall take this one. Put them over your steed and let us be off." The other commanded quickly as his eyes darted around them far more warily than his fellow Elf. These lands had in but a few days become far more dangerous. The treachery that stemmed from Orthanc was in no small part responsible.
"As you say." The first sentry responded with the faintest hint of disappointment and he quickly went and grabbed for the elder man of the two. Only to find him strapped to his chair. To which the Elf brought forth his dagger and gave a swift cut of the strap and allowed himself free access to this man. Either way both of them hoisted both men onto their waiting steeds, and within mere moments of finding them made back for the safety of Rivendell.
For the coming of these beings who fell from the heavens will forever change the course of the future. Be it for better, or for worse.
Authors Note: Updated from its poor original incarnation on 9/19/2017. Future chapters will also be edited and rewritten when time permits. For all you flamers who love coming back to any and everything to tear me and my writing apart, please feel free to do the same here. I know, I know the story sucks, but what can I say? I don't like leaving things incomplete. Oh well I look forward to more of same from you lovely people.