Log:Mandalore: Mandalore Remembers

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Mandalore: Mandalore Remembers

OOC Date: July 2, 2021
Location: Mandalore
Participants: Sumi Kora, Hahtavi, Avery Ihala Kora, Valeska Jaivon and Hadrix Kora as GM Clan Kora Mandalorian

"Mandalore is not static, it changes. Grows. The Remembrancers have been recording the history for decades, since we formed before the purge and after. Descending to savagery while some would clot together and form the kernels of what we know now. Recollecting how the clans were for some, writhing in madness the next." Noona Bik's words projected from her helmet. Her equipment functional, her jetpack, her armor and its equipment. Old enough to be recognized as pre-clone war by those who know.

The Remembrancers came at mid-day, while the expedition was back, working with the locals - getting sector scouting reports when the sun was hottest and their advantage nil. Spotlighted by the punishing sun and scorching wastes. On a trio of old repulsor tanks re-purposed for high speed, armored, transport showing signs of passing through dangerous ground. With a half dozen bodies of Shriekers impaled on pikes mounted to the front of the lead vehicle.

Kyr'yc Yaim, Last Home, had allowed them to bring their Speaker, Noona Bik and several of her honor guard onto the Butte after several long hours of contemplating. Discussion, and the acceptance of proof of the death of the buttes savage enemies. Even then Bron was none to pleased. Disappearing with himself and two guards within a basha with Noona until the sun was close to setting before they emerged again.

Then her speech began with her half dozen guard arrayed themselves in a half circle behind her.

There are a few things of which Mandalora is in no short supply. Sand. Leather and hides. Poisonous bodies of water. Murderous denizens. And history. So much history.

Over the months, Valeska has learned to listen more and space out less. She's made leaps and bounds with the language. Gotten some critical survival skills. Collected a few nifty toys -- a new one being the Sonn-Blas painted to match her armour cradled at the ready in her hands. She has even gained some common sense: learning not every fight needs to be fought. At least not until you have a better advantage.

All this aside, the speech is lost on her. Still too many foreign terms to her. Foreign places. On a foreign planet. But she's listening.

The silvered Mandalorian stands with his arms crossed over his chest, Y-visored helmet tilting this way and that as he watches the proceedings and listens to the speeches. He's terrible about Mandalorian culture, even more so Mandalorian history, so when Noona Bik talks on and on about the past he listens but finds himself soon lost. As such his gaze begins to wander... moving to the bodyguards Noona brought with her, noting the functional equipment that seems to be rare among the tribes. Another oddity from the movement of several figures of the butte pull his attention, these folk having congregated closer toward the western edge of those assembled, rather near the edge of the butte itself. With eyebrow raised and notice piqued, Avery watches the two different groups of people with interest, shifting just enough so his hand never strays too far from the E-11 carbine slung from his shoulder.

Sumi sits upon a chair with the body language of a warrior who owned the ground which she walked. Legs positioned wide as if braced and ready to rise, with her arms lazily draped upon the chair's arms, hands curled over their end. She had her helm on, the silver visor reflective and active with a HUD that actively scanned. She, like the rest of the clans, wore all the gear necessary for battle, and had a long slug rifle leaning against her seat, its sling hanging and limp with the muzzle angled skyward. The only indication Sumi is awake issues in the form of a long sigh, which conveyed over her helmet's voice system

Hahtavi stands a little to one side of his clanmates, closest to Sumi, and listens to what this Noona Bik has to say. He wears his mostly black Dreadfinder armor with a rifle and a flamer secured to his back next to his jetpack. Both his armor and his juvenile kimogila skin cloak are marked with the aliit of clan Kora subtly. His helmet is on as he listens, the strangers marked on his HUD.

For the moment he says nothing waiting to hear more, studying these strangers who have come from ... where?

As the sky continues to deepen towards navy, more and more of the butte have begun to gather and listen. A few of the small Llearil, Bitr Alor'Bazza has brought his stubby self to listen and Ca at Sumi's left - very casually leaning a hip on the Morellian's shoulder, helmet turned and tilting towards the Alor'Kora in a 'get this kriffer' sort of motion.

"Mandalore remembers, my friends. That is what the Remembrancers do. We remember, we seek to enlighten. We accept all who would join us. I myself came to the Remembrancers very young and have survived on our homeworld for nearly four decades as one. We seek peace and to unify, but we still stand ready to fight and die for what we believe in." Noona continues, arms spread wide and turning a slow circle.

"And what, we bow then to you??" Bron barks out, annoyed, fists on his hips before Noona proceeds, even toned.

"We do not seek to claim the position of Mand'alor. Our chieftain does not. We know our place, we are a reposity of knowledge. Give unto us your faith in united Mandalore. Look how the Journeymen -Pretenders- sit on their frozen moon, ferrying between that and the canyon. We could be strong together. Remember our roots... we could tell them that they may come to Mandalore, but they will not own us. They will not control us. We will have freedom and our right to live as Mandalorians do." a ripple goes through the crowd at that.

At a certain point the brain shuts down in order to protect itself from an onslaught of information it cannot process. Like a surge protector for the brain. Valeska starts to drown out the speech and lets her gaze wanders to something nearby that catches her eye. Kneeling to pick it up, she rolls the little wooden toy in her gloved hand curiously. Hn...

All the while this woman drones on and on. To the point Valeska is speaking before she is even rising. <"Oh, yes. Let us swoop in after all the hard work is done and give you promises and platitudes! Let us take the credit for the work of others! Repository of knowledge As if you have all the answers, yeah? Kriffin' spare me that drek. Hey, how about you start with actual plans. Actions? You talk too kriffing much for someone who shows up out of nowhere swearing you're not trying to take over. I haven't seen any of your helmets neck-deep in blaster shots.">

The whole thing has her on edge and as the Y-visory looks to the toy again, that edge sharpens.

The sound of singing is a strange thing to pick up amidst a speech being given by a clan leader, much more so when the one who seems to be singing it is part of their bodyguard core. Avery's bucket slowly tilts toward the one guard who seems to be moving more than the rest of them, his head subtly bobbing to a soft beat. The words are Mando'a and, though it seems like this guard is the one singing, Avery can't be certain. He twists his head from side to side, glancing at the others in his group to see if they've picked up on the same thing he's hearing.

Regardless, he hears different things that take his full attention, such as Noona suddenly denouncing the efforts of the Journeymen Protectors and the grumble that slips through the crowd as a reaction to her claim. Avery is keen on saying things, it's been noted before that many would wish his mouth to remain shut at certain key times when out with the clan, but this is not his moment to talk.... that's for the Alor and the Al'Verde. His job is to shift his weight, flex his fingers, look annoyed and relatively imposing when he bristles at such remarks.

<"The speaker speaks, but they do not remember. In the immortal words of Mand'alor the Destroyer, he explains that 'Mandalorians can not be exterminated. We are not huddled in one place for we span the galaxy. We need no lords or leaders, so you cannot destroy our command. We can live without technology, so we can FIGHT with our bare hands. We have no species or bloodline, so we can rebuild our ranks with others who want to join us. We are more than just a people or an army. We are a culture. We are an idea. You can not kill ideas.. you can not rule ideas."> Sumi stays seated, taking note of transmissions in the comms clicking. Something was going on in the background, something to the west. Sumi makes a subtle gesture to her clan to look to see.

<"You speak, speaker. You have lived for four decades speaking. Your audience are warriors. Words move the heart little when there are no actions to back it. You propose driving a spike between those who live here and up there, yet there is nothing that should divide us. I see Mando'ade here, I see them there. Your words poison the air we breath with notions of division, not union. Mandalore remembers, is what you said; /that is what the Remembrancers do/. Mandalore is more than just the Remembrancers, and I doubt this sect of sages even remember how to fight."> Sumi sat back, shaking her head with annoyance.

Hahtavi folds his arms over his broad chest, listening but not entirely amused. Then Sumi answers and he listens further, giving a nod to what she says. <"My Alor speaks Truth."> After a moment his baritone rumbles low to add, <"Even our tal'at'cuyir cuts to the heart of the matter. You come here with sweet words to try and lure some of my former clan to join with you? But what have /you/ done to help stop the raiders? What peace have your people carved out of the wasteland that others might enjoy -security-?">>

He turns his head, raising his baritone to carry so his former clanmates might hear him, <"The clans that join with the Journeymen from Concord Dawn remain autonomous and /self/ ruling. They have merely aligned themselves with strength and wisdom instead of chaos. Looking to the future, -building- a wider security zone for anyone who wishes to join in a united front against barbariety and endless butchery. What can you remember that is greater than the combined archives on Concord Dawn? Contributed to by countless clans for more generations than Manda'yaim can now recall, dating all the way back to the Taungs and their fortresses, scattered upon other worlds. Even down to a recently discovered basilisk that was still partly functional. What do the Rememberances know that compares to such history of our peoples?">>

Hatavi looks around, then back to the Rememberances' spokesperson. His baritone adds low, "I have seen a Taung fortress with my own eyes, met face to face with one of their still functional basilik droids, walked in the halls that countless generations of Mandalorians since had served within and left their histories written upon the walls. What here, now compares to such wealth of history scattered over countless worlds that has been lost to Manda'yaim, but can now be regained and shared anew by the people of Manda'yaim if they join instead, with us?">>

Noona's head turns, towards Valeska's voice, visor fixing on her and she speaks again with an even voice, "Why, every spear needs a watchful eye." arms lowering slowly, but held with open palms facing Valeska, "Clearly Kora is the mailed fist, capable of leading these charges. Leading the fight against those who would consume, rather than grow. Mandalore united would be indebted to Kora - for what they've done for our world. We take no credit. Kora's accolades are their own. While the Wazzum and Bazza cowered behind walls. While the Saiwali did little but circle their skiffs... Kora who secured the place here on the Butte of the Lost Home. Kora are the champions. We Remembrancers have already recorded this... we ask Kora and those others joined with them, join with us. To further the fight."

Sumi is turned to next, Noona's head tilting forward slightly, as if to point the T of her visor between her eyes like a crosshair. There is momentary silence and then arms crossing over her chest, "Fighting has many forms, but I think you know that very well, Ryder... Or... Dar'Ryder, now Kora." the greasy smile can almost be felt, "Not all of us are blunt instruments. Many of ours own lead the charge, but I am a speaker, a voice of the Remembrancers. I come to do just that. Others of mine went to the old fortress to the south, slayed some of those shriekers that remain, that you all did a job of striking that will be memorialized in the sagas. Honestly. We lost three of our number, we've heard you only suffered grievous injury." a flicker of a gaze at Hahtavi, inclination of head and helmet.

"Some of ours have gone to Vroxx, ferried to Concord Dawn. Saw the archives. Saw how they lord over their Council of toothless sabercats... Puppets to single clan that pulls the strings. We pull none, but we nudge and provide information. Take information. Gather." the sense of the smile widening.

Quiet falls again across the crowd. A low rattling sound and a whining churning sound. A huff of air. Then the silence of a collective breath held.

Any of the words that follow fall on deaf ears. This woman has nothing to stay to Valeska that wouldn't be better expressed coming out of her rear end after eating Hahtavi's spicy noodles. Instead, Valeska turns full-body away from Noona even as the older woman is speaking to her. Just a complete and blatant rejection. Defiance. It's what she do. Read the red paint job, yo.

Valeska looks to the west; noting a cluster of people but a tilt of her head is that of confusion. She didn't even notice the people over there until now. How many were there before? Her helmet turns towards the other Kora near her. Maybe they have a better idea.

At Sumi's nod, Avery slips toward the gathering to the west, a noticeably smaller amount now than had been there before. He lifts a shrug to Val as he wanders toward the folk assembled, noting that the one in with the Remembrancer markings are gone only leaving the members of the clans from the Butte. The Slicer goes in for further evaluation, attempting to discern what might have been encouraging the gathering to begin with. <<"Not sure what it's about Alor, at the moment it just seems there's a decent number of people here.">>

<"..and yet, you do the same. Lord over the history of our people writing and remembering as you see fit. Wazzum and Bazza, what say you of this memory etched upon the paper of their texts. Is this the history you remember, or the one they chose for you>">

Sumi raised her other hand, <"What of you Saiwali? Did you have voice on how you would be remembered?"> Sumi rises up, annoyed at the use of her name, Ryder, with lack of reverence to those that carried it, too. <"I grow tired of honeyed words. You seek to win me by saying we are champions, to show us unworthy of the alliance and partnerships we have forged in blood. I see leaders from our clans, but none from yours. Only one who wields words, not weapons. Why join a leader who can not show themselves? They send their slaves to speak for them. They Lord over the memories of our fights yet none were there to experience the loss or victory. If you want to /join us/ then show me you want to fight for it. Send your champions and fight me. I understand action, and heart. I see little of either in your words.">

So it is that Hahtavi is ... answered? He huffs a breath, arms still folded, <"I see that you mostly dodged my questions and offer very little proofs of your own achievements. Especially for as long as you say you have toiled towards the good of Mando'ade, yet only cite a single recent venture to prove yourselves." A vague gesture towards the slayn Shriekers. <"Subtlty, cunning, has it's place. But those here who know you best trust you least and have little desire to join with you. I think that speaks for itself.">

He caught Sumi's gesture and frowns, realizing this 'spokesperson' might be trying to distract them from something else. He unfolds his arms and takes a few causual steps to change his position, looks pointedly at Vyella'kel among those gathered around listening, then looks towards the west to see if he can see anything of interest as well. Hrmm.

He turns his head and says something low to his former riduur, suggesting she move among those of Kyr'yc Yaim and make others aware of what's going on to the west, to be on their guard and ready for possible violence.

The blonde woman frowns, glances westwards at the Rememberancers and those with them herself, then nods and turns to start spreading the word of infiltrators. Get some of her clan mates also watching them closely.

Hahtavi himself marks each and every one of them into his HUD for his clanmates so that if they mingle with others they can still be tracked and pinpointed even if they wear clothing and armor of the Butte. Having left the formal discussing, he makes his way closer to that knot of people just as Avery is doing. Then his gaze lifts and searches for any others making their way /away/ from that group who may already have swapped. Over his clan coms, Hahtavi reports.

<<"Good eye, Alor. I think some of them have swapped armor with the Butte clansfolk - with or without their conscent. Maybe at least 1/4 of them have slipped away or are now disguised. I've sent Vyella'kel to spread the word among my former clan, and to check their own people in key positions, to warn them and double their own guards. Over.>>"

"Ahhh. There she is. Sana's hound." Noona turns to fully face Sumi. "We've recorded you've a dog of your own. Beasts flock to beasts like flies to dung. Life is circular." There is a chugging sound, ion engines rumbling online.

The eight being approached by Hahtavi and Avery slowing and letting their hands drop to sides while Noona's guard gathers towards her.

"It's more talk! Kora is right. Why do we take your lead? You sweep in after the fact!" Ca shouts, body tense and pistol in her fist.

"Saiwali sacrificed our air-skiffs and our Alor to make the journey to the Butte!" Zatti lending his voice now. The situation begins to shift. Noona's head ticks from guard to guard as cloaks are cast away, revealing jetpacks that ignite and begin spewing up a fog of thick dust around them.

"Mandalore remembers fools as well. Those who oppose progress. But we've garnered what we needed. We will leave and darken this shabby gathering no more, eh?" preparing for flight, Noona's voice all mirth and well wishing spirit.

A roar from the west, heavy thrusters beginning to fire.

A hidden expression of confusion slips over Avery's face when he peers over the edge of the cliff... down below, the three transport vehicles that brought the Remembrancers in were starting their engines and beginning to move away on repulsor jets, leaving the meeting for some unknown reason. The reason is rather quickly discovered as the commotion behind him breaks out and the group reveal their jetpacks and intent to flee. Avery takes a few steps back, <<"Their transports are trying to make a getaway, I'm gonna try to stop them from leaving.">> he states before sprinting forward to fling himself off the edge of the Butte.

The silver and blue Mandalorian thumbs the jet ignition just as he reaches the top of his arc and the propulsion kicks in to rocket him toward the fleeing transports. As he flies away, pulling the E-11 from the sling on his shoulder, Avery gives glance behind him to see if Hahtavi or anyone else is following him in an attempt to slow or stop these wayward Remembrancers.

Something does pull Hahtavi's attention away from those he was approaching. His rifle has been drawn around and clipped to his tactical sling from the arrival so it's hanging down his front and his gloves are on it now as he approached those gathered to the west, <"Take these into custody and search them! I think the rest of the Rememberancers may have made away with hostages! Even now their three transports are pulling out!"> Infiltrators indeed, but maybe hostages as well? If Hahtavi guesses right and it's possible that he's mistaken.

He's not worried about Noona getting away. Sumi or Hadrix will take care of her, surely! But the transports ... Avery can't be going after them alone! He's going to need backup, and fast. So without waiting for orders from his officers, but keeping a sharp ear out for them in case, Hahtavi fires off his own jetpack as well and starts to arc upwards and then out after Avery.

Not after those who are trying to flee via jetpacks of their own.

Sumi sees red the moment Noona uses Sana's name. Was she Sana's hound, you're god damned right she was, and Sana's hound knew no mercy. <"They run from a fight. They are not Mando'ade."> Sumi stepped forward like she intended to run, then her jetpack lit up and closed the distance to Noona like a speeding bullet. Some how, in the time it took Sumi to close the distance, she drew and charged the riot baton from her side. Then, she struck Noona across the face with it, full force, screaming. Noona went flying to one side, and Sumi was hot on her tail, slamming the weapon against the ground where the Dar'Manda had been only a moment before.

<"You dedicate yourself to running away! FIGHT ME! I will cut your tongue from your mouth for saying her name!">

Noona took to the air, but Sumi was not going to allow her to escape. <<"Hadrix, you have command. Ensure their transports do not leave.">> Sumi's jetpack ignites again and she looks up, ready to go on her chase.

Valeska watches the west still as two of her clansmen mingle in with the group. Tension. Then the flair of ion engines and a shift in the mouthy woman's pitch. This whole ordeal is leaving a bad taste in her mouth and it's only getting worse.

Avery's report triggers something. A connection, maybe? A getaway? Why would they be trying to get away? Valeska looks one more time to the wooden toy in her hand. It had just been laying there. As if suddenly dropped and not able to be picked up again. Her fist clenches around it tightly and the helmet turns to Noona.

The rest of her body follows from ths shoulders down, bringing around with it in a fluid motion the barrel of he rifle. She is just about to fire when Sumi -- dear sweet Sumi -- is on the woman like a lizard monkey. Fair play!

Valeska throws the toy down and switches on her jetpack.... wait. Nope. She does not do that because she's apparently forgotten the one lesson she's had. Oh, boy. This is going to go well.

Any witty retort Noona had was lost when the baton crashed against her helmet - forcing the shot from her pistol to go wide as she goes skyward - the lot of her bodyguards opening up with their own weapons - trained to try and deflect Sumi if not outright kill her. One of them having a split second to call out in surprise before his armor melts inward in the wake of the massive plasma bolt that cores through and blows sizzling chunks out the other side and sending the body falling.

<<"Copy. Doing what I can...">> Hadrix voice rumbles over comms, signals going out to mark targets and paths even as he draws the slide on his long gun again, ratcheting another bolt into the plasma chamber.

The Butte turns to chaos, spears, swords, slug weapons and blasters coming out in an exchange that lights up the area like a celebration field. Figures on either side tumbling down while Ca of Bazza actually leaps up to bound from the shoulder of Bitr to put her ship-hull blade spear into the mouth of one of those whom Avery and Hahtavi pointed out, pinning them to the ground with the shaft going out the other side and to the ground.

Another is battered down in a hail of weapon clubs and fists, pinned and held so that they might be taken into custody.

The transports themselves, split. The middle one slamming thrust and juddering side to side to try and create havoc for Avery and Hahtavi before the one on the right brakes and turns southward, the left hand mirroring the movement to head north and the center tank keeps west.

Noona and her bodyguard keep going skyward, trying to get distance and angle away, weapons blazing.

Valeska looks down the edge of the cliff as all hell breaks out around her. That little wooden toy flashes in her head... rage surges... and with a curse, Valeska gives a flick of her two fingers and the jetpack ignites! She takes off from the edge of the butte, swerving around one blaster shot, yet sadly leaning right into the other; a wound to her chesst marking her first in-combat takeoff.

It doesn't matter. It doesn't matter. Go. Keep going. Valeska tucks her legs in to veer herself into an arching dive, making a b-line straight for the transporter heading south. It isn't long before she catches up and thunks onto the top with a wicked three-point landing. You should've seen it, you guys.

Angry, she stomps her booted foot on the top. <"Knock knock! Get your shebs out here and die!">

A quick nod is given to the vod on his tail before all focus returns to the transport they're pursuing. Closer and closer they come, Avery angling his feet to prepare to drop onto the transport and find an entry when hatches pop on the right side. <"How considerate of them to give us an opening!"> He calls, E-11 brought around to turn one of the Remembrancer snipers into mist, his body falling from the opened hatch to bounce over the sand. A quick adjustment in air, a sudden burst of jet propulsion, and Avery angles himself downward and into the hatch, slipping in feet first to encounter the others.

<<"Got four inside, Haht... driver, co-pilot, turret about to open up in the back, and another at the other hatch.">> The silver Slicer calls out before bringing his weapon around in preparation of taking over this vessel. <<"Just gear, no hostages.">>

Sumi introduces Noona to the rage she was notorious for. Tilting her head, and nearly breaking the sound barrier, Sumi catches up to the woman and bashes her 3 times. The final sends her from the sky to land in the sand below. Sumi follows, transitioning to a hover to land on her feet. She walks the distance, deactivating her weapon and clipping it back to her belt, then withdraws a dirk from her lower back, flipping it over in her hand.

Noona's jetpack is detached and thrown to the sand, then her helmet, and finally Sumi flips her to her back and kneels down. Using the jagged pommel of the dirk, Sumi broke the woman's jaw on each side of her face, dislocating it in a manner that seemed inhuman and deformed. With no possible way to close her mouth, Sumi took hold of her tongue, yanked it forward, and cut it out by sawing with the serrated edge of the vibrating blade. It cut through the tissue like butter, detaching the muscle with ease.

<"I cut the source of your poison. No one will remember your words. Here, you will drown in the desert upon your own blood. Her name will be the last you use in vain."> Sumi took the bloody tongue and hooked it to her armor. Not as a trophy, but a challenge. Sumi's attention goes to the parade heading her way. She was going to be in the fight of her life. She raised the bloody dirk in defense, ready to fight at close quarters. <"So eager to die that you line up for it! Come then, I am ready!"> She charges forward.

Something catches his eye even as he's coming in to land on the transport behind Avery. Hahtavi sees a gunner pop up through a hatch behind them. His rifle in hand, this Kora shoots that gunner and hearing Avery, he immediately launches back up into the air to go after another transport!

<<"I shot a gunner but don't think I killed him, vod. If there are no hostages on board, I suggest you bail and try for the third transport as quick as you can. Children may be among them, Avery. Don't waste time, that's what they'll want. Over.">>

That over the Kora channels so the rest can be updated as well.

As fast and has hard as he can Hahtavi's firing his jetpack and sailing after one of the other transports, whichever one is furtherest away he'll be going after. That way he'll be leaving the third and closer one for Avery who may take be delayed getting free.

<<"Concord Dawn, Reckoning, if you have eyes on, we'd sure appreciate your tracking these three transports if you have sats or ships in position. Hahtavi out.">> Man, is he going to be pissed when he finds out after that none of them can oblige. To his clanmates, he adds, <<"We could use some assistance out here, over.">>

No answer on comms from Concord Dawn or Reckoning. Gor Bullet answers to himself alone or to those he has tasked. Concord Dawn? Their focus is for Vroxx Canyon, and watching for the periodic attempt by one of the raiding clans actually getting a ship together to try and boost to make their attempt to land on Concord Dawn.

Though the expedition is sanctioned by the Journeymen and they have allocated equipment - they leave matters to the Expedition. The outpost is not yet allied yet and so not their concern.

More green comets come from from the direction of Hadrix as he lays fire into those taking pot shots as they are forced to leave behind the woman disfigured and muted by Sumi in her rage. The big man turned about in all of the chaos watches the rest of the grounded enemy being battered into the ground, pinned down, bound to be taken. There's jeers and anger rippling through the butte. Helmets being removed showing familiar faces and some strangers.

<<"Avery, Hahtavi, Val'ika. Status?">>

At that moment one of the crew hatches behind Valeska opens and an arm comes out - blaster aimed for the small of her back before the firing stud is pulled.

Clinging to the transporter as it goes into a crisscross maneuver, Valeska holds on tight to keep from falling off. This.. does not work as a sharp, burning pain rips through her lower vertebrae just as she opens her comms to respond to Hadrix. What comes out instead of the reply is a cry of pain and a strained curse. That one hurt... a lot.

Valeska twists around to fire off a shot in answer just as the transporter makes a sharp turn then back into another. Her grip slips, her shot goes wide, and Valeska is tossed off the transporter. Just like many a-baddie she had sent to their sandy graves, Valeska disappears into a cloud of sand; her body hitting the ground hard and tumbling several feet before coming to a rolling stop on her side. Helmet knocked off and unmoving.

Avery takes a moment to evaluate his targets before lifting the carbine to end both pilots' lives. <"Well fellas, thanks for the ride!"> He quips, squeezing the trigger to.... and the driver yanks the tank to the side, slamming Avery against the wall and causing his first shot to ricochet around inside the vehicle. <"Kriff!"> He yells as the red bolt slams into some armor nearby, ending its haphazard journey. With a growl he raises the carbine again and erases the troublesome pilot from existence. Unfortunately, Hahtavi is right.... there may be children at stake here and this transport clearly isn't of major, major concern. Time is of the essence and Avery hoists himself from the hatch he entered, flaring his rockets to rise into the air, and watches the vehicle pull away.

<<"Alright, heading so...">> The slicer begins when he sees a crimson figure tumble from the back of a transport to lay still in the sand. Emerald eyes go wide and with a measure of panic in his voice, he calls out over comms. <<"Val is down! Repeat, Valeska is down! Hadrix! She's southbound and needs assistance!">> Avery's vision turns the color of Val's armor and his HUD picks up the southbound transport, the gunner that shot her off the tank being outlined in his display. <<"I'm after the vehicle...">> he calls through clenched teeth, turning his body to stream across the sky after his new target.

Sumi was at a run, and took to the air, but the Dar'Manda flew away and out of her blade's reach. <"Hahaha! You flee, yet all I carry is a dirk. Go cowards, return to your hovels and books. Hahahaha!"> Sumi slips the dirk back into its sheath at the small of her back and adjusts course. <<"Sumi checking back in. Where am I needed?">> Anger subsiding, revenge had, Sana's honor protected, this Hound of War returns to her clan remembering she is Kora, now.

Now landed with a loud thump on top of the transport tank, Hahtavi finds another hatch popper coming up to try and shoot him. But he's ready for it this time. Rifle already in his hands, he fires - just barely missing but automatically follows it up with a second shot that nails the bastard. The dar'Manda's helmeted head snaps back and they sag, but do not fall, blocking the hatch.

Hahtavi runs the few steps to close the distance, <<"I am on the northbound transport.">> He grunts, trying to force the body out of his way, locking his maglocks in his boots to keep from behing slung off of the transport and to try and give himself more leverage to force his way inside.

<<"Try'n tae get in and fo..">> His head snaps up and looks southwards, trying to see what happened to Val, <<"Valeska?">> Kriff! There's only dust billowing up from behind it as it gets further away.

Alas, no time for it. Hahtavi /must/ stay focused on here and now. He's got to get past this guy and get inside.

<<"Hahtavi, Avery. Medevac Val'ika. We can track them...">> Hadrix's head turning towards the jeering Alor chasing off the remaining bodyguards as they hurtle into the sky and away, leaving behind a smattering of dead, some of them having been members of the clans of the Butte. <<"N'eparavu takisit, Sumi...">> I'm sorry, Sumi.

Saiwali clan members are rushing for their air-skiffs moored at the edge of the drop with Bazza, Wazzum and small numbers from Shad'hain and Llearil mounting while others must remain on home-guard. Bron is fuming, Bitr is side by side with Zatti and all are in a horde like Stingwings from a kicked nest.

"We need to track them!" a voice rings out. Half-panicked, the note of fear clamped down on and focused with.

"Kora!" Hizi'in of the Haran'kemire clan of the Butte stepping forward, helmet off - sweat soaked and wide eyed with fuming rage. "Kora, join our hunt!" swallowing and collecting himself. "They've taken the children!"

The darkened Y-visor dips to the injured crimson armor as he screams overhead, Valeska's black hair splayed across the sands, her body still. Avery swallows the dread the creeps up into his throat, head tilting up to sight in on the escaping vehicle as he tries to catch those responsible for downing his Riduur. Unfortunately, no matter how hot the flames burn from his pack, the ion engine is too powerful and the transport slowly gains distance. <"No.... no, no, no, no, NO!"> The Slicer screams, watching helplessly as his target slips from him.

Knowing that no matter what he does, he will not catch the southbound transport, he pulls his E-11 to the ready and squints his eyes, sighting in on the grinning face of the man that presumably blasted Valeska from the back of the transport. <"Let's see you smile about this...."> he claims, depressing the carbine's trigger and sending a bolt of heated red plasma to chase after the departing tank. With a sadistic grin, Avery notices the recoil from the bastard before he drops into the safety of the tank, the E-11's shot burning a hole through the Remembrancer's face.... but then it's gone... the transport streaming over the desert into the beyond.

With fear gripping his heart, Avery turns to rocket back to the downed Mandalorian, hoping to all in the galaxy that she's still breathing, her heart still pumps, and Hahtavi and he can reach her in time. <"Please be alive... Valeska, please...."> He pleads to himself and the powers that be as he burns hot in her direction.

Valeska remains motionless in the sand, wind blowing her black hair into a blood-streaked face: her helmet and rifle scattered somewhere in her wake and half-buried. Her armour could only take so much of the impact of connecting to the fast-moving ground like hitting a durasteel wall. Body limp and unresponsive, blood coming from her mouth, and the little wooden toy tucked into her gunbelt.

Sumi follows the IFF for Valeska, and lands near her motionless body. The transition from air to feet is fluid, landing firmly and prompting a cloud of dust to rise from beneath. Quiet as the grave, Sumi approaches the female's form to ascertain her condition and determine if she is safe to move. She kneels beside Valeska to roll her over, using a hand to lightly tap her cheek before pulling her glove off to touch her neck in search of a pulse.

Sumi does not commit their forces to the hunt yet. They had a warrior to pull back to their feet. No one gets left behind.

<<"This is Sumi. I'm here with Val. Going to see if she can be moved. I will advise here shortly.">>

<<"Kriff!">> That's his acknowledgement of the orders. Hahtavi bends down low and sticks his T-visor down along the body to look inside, risking getting his head blown off in doing so, but no way he was leaving this transport without first getting a glimpse of what was inside.

Then he unlocks his magboots and leaps off, his jetpack igniting to send him up high into the air and veering southwards to arc in the direction of Valeska's IFF signal.

While he's up high, Hahtabvi marks all the transports and their directions for their HUDS if they aren't already so marked. <<"The northbound transport is carrying Moisture Vaporators, not hostages. So they must be in the southbound.">> A sigh, <<"Unless of course they used the diversion of the transports and any hostages were taken out another way, over.">> His attention turns back to where Sumi is already there with Valeska in the dust...

Figures left standing in the sands as dusk deepens. One of their number felled. A potential new mission to be undertaken. Tragedy in the wake of successes on the heels of near tragedies in the deserts of Mandalore, where there never seems to be a state that remains. Always in flux. Chaos yet.

The tanks continue to speed away in their differing directions with other clans attempting to give chase, despite the distance now had between them all. Futile? Maybe. But never regretted. Even if forced back, it is the first of many steps. Whether the Expedition joins or not there is something that has fueled Mandalorians for centuries.

Long memories. Short fuses. Vengeance will be had. Justice meted out in the wastelands own way.