LegendsLog:Battle of Balmorra III: Counterattack
Sobrik- until very recently the capital and greatest city of Balmorra- has remained the keystone of Republic defenses on the besieged world. The invading Mandalorian clans needed to take it to complete their conquests, the Republic could not afford to lose it, and the great city had suffered terribly as a result. Long stretches of walls and many fortified places had fallen under orbital bombardments over the past weeks, leading the garrison to take shelter underground, lest even the mighty Jedi fall victim to the ruin of concussion missiles and turbolasers. It had become a habit for those on the front lines: take shelter under fire, and rush to the surface once bombardment ended to face the inevitable sortie of warriors.
But the present barrage has been the worst, yet. For a full half hour, the defenses had been hammered into dust and rubble. One Republic infantry commander had sent a.. terse communique to their own navy in orbit regarding the situation. The words <Where are you, you bastards?> may have been included. The dire situation grew worse when flickering subterranean monitors reported a powerful formation of eight Shaadlar landing craft approaching Sobrik (each Shaadlar carrying up to 800 warriors), escorted by four full squadrons of Davaab fightercraft, and multiple Basilisk war droids. This was it: the decisive attack of Clan Jendri.
And the bombardment still hadn't stopped.
Resmi is looking at the whole sensor report, or at least gets it... She tilts her head and the green-tatooed-woman sighs. "Weelllll, at least they don't do things by half measures." She says simply. The young woman looks down at her saber and then glances around once more before taking a deep breath. "So plans?"
What did Jedi do when waiting between rounds of orbital bombardment? Meditation. The fighting of Mandalorians on an open field was enough to be considered training and so in order to replenish ones spirit and connection to the Force and to purge a wellspring of emotion from any losses that might have been incured, it was best to bath in that special connection for a time. So there the Echani, Gerus Blaze, Jedi Knight Commander was corss leged upon the floor, lightsaber still in hand. As the alert came through, yelow eyes fluttered open, sweat still fresh on his dirty pale skin, white hair matted and unkempt for days of fighting and exertion. He looked towards the monitor and let out a low grumble. Standing, he moved towards the way out. "We fight them until we can't..." Is all the swordsmen has to offer to the Padawan.
Focusing on the elements of the Force is a hard thing to accomplish when everything around is shaking from impact. Soldiers all huddle together as dust is shaken free from the rafters of the shelter. Terse commands pass back and forth from the officers, but the overall situation seems to be that their defenses are going to fail before everyone can even get into place, and the Mandalorians intend to make short work of the city.
Master Kae is situated away from many of the soldiers. Her shoulder is wrapped in bandages with the stain of her blood still bleeding through. She'd seen the worst of the action for much of this campaign, and her wounds began to grow as long as the list of her accolades, but never had they felt so desperate as this moment. "What of our defenses remain? Turrets? Vehicles? Ships?" She asks.
The ranking army officer in the bunker answers Brianna, "Fleet says they'll send what help they can, but the enemy warships are pressing them hard. Anti air turrets and surface to air batteries are down. As for speeders-" a pause as the sensor operator shouts, "Sir! they're through the perimeter." The commander bellows, "Arms! Everyone who can stand, to the surface!" Troopers scramble to ascend. Alas, the passage back to the surface had been blocked; the bombardment had done enough damage to partially collapse the ascending corridor.
Resmi is up and on her feet, moving up the walkway, probably with everyone else... Afterall. Jedi, well, they lift rocks, amongst other thins...
As she looks at things, Resmi then raises a hand, it's held palm up slightly as she focusses and visualises through the force, moving the rocks...
Dirt shifts, debris fall and rocks start to move out of the way at this point....
Even before the ranking officer was caling for the men to come to arms, Gerus was starting up stair well to the top. As he noticed the blockage the Ecahni rolled his eyes and gave a sigh. "Krif... alright." Clearning his throat, there is a quick glance back to Resmi before he faces the blockage once again. His free hand reaches out and with a small ammount of concentration assists the Padawan in her moving of the blockage.
"We need not go to the surface." Brianna says. "Our strength lie in these bunkers now. We need only hold our ground here, where they must conform to the size of our dwelling and corridors, where their vehicles will find them no purchase. Let them settle above and fight us below. When our ships are at station and able to help, we'll shell the heart of their forces while we remain beneath the protection of our bunkers. Drawing out to the open invites them to pick us apart and hemorrhage our strength by trying to match attrition to attrition. This is their way. We must be smarter."
Despite this brief, the Master Jedi draws her weapon and activates it by clicking the stud on the hilt. The blue blade emerges at the sound of a SNAP-HISS, and hums at her side, each subtle movement announced. "Jedi to the front near the entrances to thwart grenades. Riflemen make lines and ready your weapons. Get our barricades up and prepare yourselves for battle!"
"You may be right, Jedi Commander," the army officer allows to Brianna. "Private, get me a visual on the ground above!" the sensor officer is commanded. Several moments of work and the sensor screen shifts to a remote view of their position from the direction of the city center.
The landscape aboveground is horrific. Buildings in the vicinity had been reduced to jagged shells, their sundered stone and twisted durasteel rising like blackened, broken teeth into an orange-stained sky streaked with raining turbolasers and the smoke trails of concussion missiles. The air is clouded with dust and ozone. The first of the eight insectoid machines that are Shaadlar landers had settled on six blocky mechanical legs, and warriors pour out by the hundreds. Seven more such craft still approach, their missiles and turrets laying down ruinous covering fire. Mandalorian fighters and Basilisks are thick in the sky. Already, pockets of Republic resistance were being swarmed as stunned troopers in red emerged from other bunkers to find the enemy already upon them. As the desperate firefight broke out in earnest, one might notice a great, growing fireball in the sky. Seeming to loom larger with each passing moment, it builds from a speck to twice the size of the sun in less than a minute.
Resmi looks to the others and finally ignites her lightsaber... "OOokay, sooo we set up down here, use these as bottle necks, and draw them in? Might wanna get that al out to everyone.." She says and if she sees the images, Resmi blinks... "Umm and what int he world is that big fireball?" She asks as she looks aorund...
Gerus looks back towards Bri, then forwards towards the way up. "If you think it'll work I've no problem with it." He presses the activation button on his blade then, the darkened corridor lighting with the blue of the saber, glow awash over his pale skin. It hums, much like Bri's own.
"We hold our ground." Brianna says, taking to the front of one of the formations to stand tall. Her lightsaber is brought up in a standard stance and she awaits until a moment of thought comes to mind. Brushing her hooded robe back, the Master Jedi unclips the Alor's mask she'd taken from their initial battle. Then she moves up the path to incite some good old fashioned Mandalorian rage. The only thing that could offset a determined march were emotions, and Mandalorians had legendary tempers. Let them see a Jedi holding the mask. Perhaps then they will follow her below instead of in the city.
"Agreed," Meetra speaks as she reaches for her lightsaber, keeping it close to her side while her gaze is drawn upwards. "If we flee, all we do is make it easier for them to scatter us and hunt us down." Calm tones, but calm was what she had to offer to the soldiers and Jedi alike. There was no doubt in her mind to the danger they were about to face. Brianna's plan, the sight of the mask? It brought a shiver down her spine of some vague familier memory she didn't care to share and she looks upwards towards the glowing ball.
When the shots come their way, or rather toward her companion, she steps forwards and takes a deep breath before raising her hands. Whatever that weapon was? She'd -try- to stop it and force them to advance the 'old fashioned' way.
The massive fireball in the sky grows near enough to be recognized as a huge ship, a relic of former wars, formed of irregular spires sprouting above and below from a kilometer-long keel. Trailed by a smaller pair of reckless cruisers plummeting in its wake, the huge battleship burning through Balmorran skies opens fire on the still-descending Mandalorian ships, as the two escorts begin sending torrents of lighter lasers into the swarming clouds of enemy fighters.
In a small mercy, orbital bombardment ceases to fall of the city, shifting targets to send volleys of missiles slamming into the looming Republic battleship.
Hooray, now the defenders *only* face hundreds of (now enraged) Mandalorian warriors, several Basilisks, and a number of human-sized insectoid walker droids, which seem to swarm toward the sight of a lightsaber.
Brianna *definitely* got their attention.
Resmi is doing well, what Resmi does, or think she's supposed to! She's standing between troopers and Mando'al, acting as a shield.
Her lightsaber whirls around her, spinning, rolling and flashing as she bats a bolt in the general direction of the oncoming Mandalorian hoard...
The bolt rolls wide, but she stands there, waiting for them to come into range at least...
"It's actually not a bad plan..." Gerus says as he waits with the rest for the troopers to come swarming into the bunker. The ground shakes slightly with the walkers above, "Take care of the hords and clean up the droids after when there's less of a pain to deal with." He raises his blade as they near, ready for the fight, the force flowing through him like a gourging stream.
It wasn't her brightest idea to date, but she knew what honor was and what it meant to Mandalorians. It was the same with the Echani! So when Brianna is rewarded for her bravery (stupidity) of flashing the Mandalorian mask by a wall of blaster fire and the enraged war cry of some hundreds of warriors. Bolts pop the ground all around her as she pivots and runs back to the bunker.
By the time she turns about to defend, she's already got warriors following her down. "TO BATTLE!" Screams the Jedi, and she cuts down three warriors in quick succession. The mask? Attached back at her hip. Let them come and take it from her.
Later she'd talk with Brianna, perhaps suggest her disapproval at using herself as such blatant bait despite the fact Meetra had been plenty guilty of the same in her own life...but right now there was a charging horde of armored killers coming their way.
Leaping forward, the former Exile's blade ignites and slices into the first of the warriors, quickly becoming a silvery blur of glowing light and death amidst the chaos of armored bodies and blaster fire!
From the dorsal hull of each Mandalorian landing craft, large scale holoprojectors flicker to life, emitting a series of thirty-meter tall blue images as Brianna dashes back to friendly lines. The same image flickers onto the screen inside the bunker as the signal briefly overrides its display. It is an armored warrior standing on the bridge of a large ship, face concealed behind what appears to be the telltale Mask of Mandalore, holding a fan-bladed polearm and speaking Mando'a in a slightly high pitched voice. One Shaadlar is torn apart by turbolasers, cutting its signal, but the remaining projectors continue. Those familiar with the tongues of the invader will recognize words of invocation, exhorting the warriors loyal to House Jendri to capture Sobrik, complete their conquest, and claim Balmorra as the first fortress of <<-Mandalore.. the Renewer.>>
The cluster of roaring warriors lead the first reckless charge on the defenders hardpoint, only one shot finding its way past the wall of light to wound a trooper. In short order, the attackers send three of the insectoid walkers to rush the Jedi..
Resmi sees the spider droids, she tilts her head, they're at distance.... She then focusses on the nearest one and her hand reaches out.
The force responds to her beckoning as one of the droids is picked up, almost gently, before suddenly being hurled at the nearest other droid, again moving with the wave of the young Jedi's hand. Both end up damaged, somehow she manages to get one on its back... Resmi takes a deep breath again and raises her saber to a defensive stance for now.
"More like Manadlore, My testicals have yet to descend... Force, sometiems I wish I was Deaf instead of color blind." Gerus grumbles in that low gravily tone of his before hazarding a glance. "Great..." He looks back at the troopers, "Bug Droids..." He lets out a growl and propells himself forwards and towards the droids in question. He knows what's going to happen and he knows it's not going to feel good. Jumping through three of them, he slices them up ahead of any real damage they can do. They explode of course, blanketing him in a fire. He misses the concussiveness and any shrapnell but his cloak is on fire and his hair in singed when he lands on the other side, yellow eyes searching for another target.
Brianna raises her hand, issuing her influence over the living force to take hold of a Spider Droid and smash its sensors into the roof of their bunker. Her intent to topple the automaton onto the surrounding troops was thwarted when its leg caught and the droid's stabilization protocols kicked in. The droid answered in basic, making Brianna laugh at what it had to say. "STATEMENT: THIS SURFACE IS QUITE UNEVEN!"
Bug droids. She hated bug droids. Supressing a little shudder, Metra twisted her saber around to deflect a bolt coming her way before she thrust her hand outwards, sending one of the little walking detonators with their creepy legs flying back into the horde of oncoming warriors. A loud detonation and a shower of metal, the Exile was already bringing her weapon back to bare. "How do you like it?!" she calls back, a rare outburst at her foes leaking through.
Those droids -were- creepy after all!
With their Jedi-seeking spider-legged bombs not having the desired effect, and in fact backfiring with bloody results, the warriors of House Jendri try one more violent push to break through this underground bottleneck, before a heavy impact above causes the Mandalorians to draw slightly back. A hideous blast of screaming durasteel grates at the ear as sonic cannons and rending metallic claws combine to blast away and peel back the reinforced roof of the bunker, as a Basilisk tears in from above, like a monstrous predator seeking burrowing prey...
She's hit, and seemingly bad... Her left arm now hangs a bit as a projectile cuts through at its base...
A wince and a sharp inhail is added when on the same side another projectile graizes her.. Resmi hisses again and takes a deep breath, trying to call on the force to help deal with some of this pain... Her concentration however is broken as troopers rush the young Jedi.
Quickly she stands up, bringing her first swing in a hard upper cut, using a reverse grip on her saber to well, litterally cut the fellow in two, long ways.
As she sees another coming in, she sidesteps more shots and tries to whirl and bring her saber around on the trooper, the swing narrowly missing.
A very brief pause and Res switches quickly to a forehand grip and simply thrusts, catching the fellow neatly under the chin..
As he falls, Res looks around and tries to take up just a little bit of cover as she tries to figure out how best to handle her current situation. Gerus is up just in time to send a bolt flying back towards the Mando who shot at him, and just as quickly to cut him down. That's what he gets for using a blaster. Though, there were plenty around with other non deflective attacks... With an angry hum of his blue blade, another Soldier is cut down before Gerus returns to friendly lines, a shot hitting him in the back... only to bounce and explode off his Force Protection armor. He falls forward, cursing in his native tongue before standing up and turning back towards the enemy with determined yellow eyes. His blue blade rises... ready to press the attack.
Brianna took hold of the same droid again, this time having more success over its control and the smashing of troops. Like a pinball, the automaton bounced from side to side, smashing bits here and there all the while the shaking voice uttered. "STATEMENT: THERE IS NO PROTOCOL FOR THIS ACTION."
Brianna becomes the target for a lot of hate and discontent. Even though nothing hits her, to include the ire of the Basilisk droid. Brianna releases her hold of the droid and pivots about, raising her weapon up to attack. It was getting crowded!
Pushing forwards, Meetra's lightsaber continues its slicing and tearing, but inevitably her gaze falls on the wardroid and rider that stands among the tide. Such a weapon could decimate them if it got too close after all. Sweat-matted dark locks of hair clung to her face from the heated air, her gloved fingers tightened around the hilt of her glowing weapon as the General pushed forwards. Deflection, slice, parry, stab, twist, sidestep. Over and over again, she was trying to survive and claim victory as she'd done in the past, each misstep could easily spell injury or doom...
But the Exile was not invincible or perfect by any means. The commander's bolt thrower hits her hard, piercing through the protection of her robes and into her shoulder. The first she'd seen coming, managing to lessen the impact harmlessly. The second, fired -through- the warrior she'd just slashed? It had caught the woman off-guard enough to wound her heavily.
As the hulking Basilisk tears into the fortified bunker amid a tumble of bent girders and broken duracrete, the dull light in its semi sentient optical sensors fixes on Brianna, at whom a rapid burst of blaster fire is loosed from a shoulder cannon. The rider- resplebdabt in blue and gold armor, turns loose a wicked bolt thrower at Meetra, roaring aloud, "Slay the Jedi and this world is ours- A frigate to whoever brings me a lightsaber!"
Resmi frowns, takes another deep breath and with teeth clenched, swings out of her hidy hole as it were. Quickly she brings her saber up through a blaster rifle, and probably hands, before bringing down on the latter's owner... Another trooper goes down before she again ducks under blaster fire and stabs through a Mandalorian... Seeing another fellow behind, she tries to push well one into the other.. Naturally this doesn't work, something about the bright blue glow of her saber being a give away for her intentions, allwoing the warrior to deftly dodge aside, before the woman tries to dart back into cover some.
Gerus looks towards the Basilisk, his saber held at a low guard. A brow where white hair once restsed (It got singed off in the explosion). Twirling his blade around he starts towards it at an Even pace, before speeding up to a jog, and then finally a run as his blue blade carves into the monsterous war droid. He twirls around and hits it another time, slixing molten lacerations into it's armor and componants. A third hit and the lightsaber remains inside, to melt and disintigrate any extra guts it can before the Echani pulls the blade from it's metalic depths.
With her lightsaber at the ready, Brianna springs into the attack, driving her lightsaber into the side of the basilisk droid. When the blade cuts free, she swings again, having similar damage, but one of her three swings simply cuts off a small piece of the machinery showering her in sparks. The Echani Jedi Master steps back, prepared to encounter the Mandalorians that attack!
Meetra was bleeding, but she wasn't stopping. A stain spreads across her shoulder where her blood was still flowing, but the woman surges after the others who rain blows on the metal monster of a war machine.
Leaping upwards, her lightsaber surges upwards and severs components already damaged, but the exile was still moving. Light steps guided by the force carry her across the top of the wardroid and she lashes out with her lightsaber to attack the man who'd shot her.
One doesn't chase a dragon into its den, one doesn't pursue a razor shark into the water, and one doesn't survive long at close quarters against lightsabers. The brief success of their Chief against the Jedi General turns swiftly to horror for the invaders, as the mighty Basilisk is carved apart by a trio of swords, before the richly armored rider is promptly cut down, even before he can finish falling off his destroyed mount. The surviving Jendri warriors bolt for the surface, where they expect the support of their aircraft..
But the skies no longer belong fully to Mandalore, and in the absence of enemy fighter cover, a column of Republic light hovertanks has advanced out of the city's center to blunt the Mandalorian attack. Overhead, the Republic battleship is visibly burning in places along its superstructure, but while damaged, it still fires on the remains of the shattered formation of fleeing Shaadlars.
Resmi takes a deep breath as Mandalorians run... She sits back into her cover and begins tos it down, keeping her saber lit only for the moment as she tries to catch her breath, and maybe if she can start healing her self...
Gerus lets his blade die as the retreat becomes obvious. The burns were starting to bother him a bit, the pain nagging at the back of his brain but the force flowing through him helped dull that sensation a bit. It was still there though. "Let's see what the Force has in store for us next." THe lightsaber is returned to his belt.
Brianna climbs out of the bunker to look up at the Republic ship. "Gah.. that is one /ugly/ ship."
Sliding from the droid, Meetra finally exhales a breath, extinguishing her saber and slumping a little against the metal husk with a soft pained laugh. "Ugly or not, I'm glad to see it there..."
The Mandalorian offensive had inflicted horrific damage on Sobrik, and heavy casualties on the city's defenders, but the rapid advance had fallen short of capturing the city center, delayed just barely enough for the loss of air supremacy to doom House Jendri's greatest drive for victory.
In the most desperate fight since the sudden invasion began, the Jedi held.