Log:New Republic: A Safe Haven
It has been two days since the defense of Point Besh, and the battle in the streets of Capital Codru is in full swing. Outposts through out the city are seeing constant combat action from troop fluctuations with stormtroopers, to armor movements, and now sporadic action. A patrol of Republic troopers led by a contingent of Jedi were assigned to patrol one of the more dangerous regions of the city. During their route, a particularly quiet one, they came across a ruined cafe where a child was hiding and got up and ran. The child, a young boy, dove deeper into the ruin that was the cafe to scream that people were outside. Now suddenly, the Jedi, and their Republic trooper team, stand face-to-face with civilians who have First Order trooper weapons trained on them. "STAY AWAY!" The elder of the group said. "WE GOT NO BUSINESS WITH YOU!"
"We're with the New Republic. Please, put your weapons down. We're here to assist you." Chani's hands are up and devoid of weapons of any kind. Her dark eyes dart from muzzle to muzzle, then trail past towards where the civlians have their fingers wrapped around the triggers of the procured weapons. The Naboo native's breath comes quick, because being directly in the line of fire in front of what amounts to a shooting squad has triggered her adrenaline, and there's no avoiding the rapid pulse increase or the subtle tremors that threaten to overtake her self control. "Allow us to aid you." She's no diplomat. She's not even anyone with a rank. Chani's instinct is just to help, because she knows exactly what these people are going through.
Merek of course was on the scene as a Commando, taking the time to adjust his rifle while he wears that white-black armor, with the helmet taking a look to all of the people. He nods a bit while he waits to see what's needed.
Jax was among the jedi in the group. His features hidden in his deep heavy hood as the weather always seemed to be raining on Munto Codru. His hands rise and he slowly he moves to pull back his hood to reveal his face. Then his empty hands remain skyward. "She is right, we can help if you would allow us. If you do not wish our help. We will not force it upon you and simply ask that you did not see us. Do what you believe is best for your families. I'm a jedi knight and several of us here tonight are in the order."
Ban Iskender holds up both hands in a gesture for calm, choosing to offer a mild jest when informed that they have no business with the elder: "Certainly not, sir, I daresay it would appear this establishment is closed for business. If, however, it is your wish to be escorted out of the zone of conflict, together with your dependants, perhaps we may be of service."
No combatant he, barely a hand with a blaster, no idea what he's doing with the stunsaber on his hip. But the idea of violence twists Qutha's face up as if someone had forced bitter citrus in his mouth.
"Please - there isn't need for this. As my compatriots have said; there are no need for arms or for aggression. There are those here that are members of the order that seeks to bring Light and good here." offering a small smile and motioning to the others, "Task us and allow those who can take on burden, to aid and give prove of our genuine wish to help." drawing his hood back to expose his face, emerald eyes glimmering.
"Or I offer up myself, to be taken as hostage - to be returned once other work is done. Proof of our good intentions."
It's quiet for a long moment, the hard faces of these local scrutinizing every movement from the group. Each statement offered is something to be considered, and after the last has spoken, a few of those long faces turn back to the elder who considers it. "Ain't got much use for a hostage; hell I got enough mouths to feed here. With there being no power, and dangerous in the streets.. we've been trapped here. Patrols of those white armored soldiers keep coming by everytime we try to leave. You're the first we've seen that don't wear that armor.."
He wiped at his nose with the back of his hand and sighed. "What's this business about Jedi? Ain't been no Jedi in half a century.. maybe longer. DEAD.. EXTINCT.. but, if you are.."
"Tell them to take us to the sanctuary! Tell them.." The young child beckons, pulling on the arm of the elder. The elder side eyes the group and reaches out to pull the boy to stay behind him. "Okay, okay. You lot heard of the sanctuary? Hidden vault under the city. Used to be catacombs of an old ruin repurposed to help us weather the storm. Bunch of folk are there now. There are a few ways to reach it, but all of the routes are guarded by those damned troopers. You want to help us, Jedi.. carve a path through those troops and get us to our vault. We ain't soldiers, and mine all are too young to have done what's been done these past few days."
Aryn settles near the back of the group, listening quietly to the commentary. She is checking her medic satchel, but decided she shouldn't overwhelm the locals with more talk of peace and compromise.
The sudden outburst from the young child draws Chani's attention away from the barrels trained at their group. She exhales a little harder, but does not relax until the elder himself grants his blessing. Chani's hands lower until her arms are at her sides, but her chin shakes from left to right. "We will help you get there if you guide us to where you need to go." Chani herself hasn't heard of any underground sanctuary beneath the city, but she is foreign to this planet. "Please gather your group together. We'll prepare to depart." Chani glances over her shoulder to the others, though her eyes land on the Princess in the back. In the end, it's Aryn's call. She is the leader of this mission, after all.
Merek looks then to everyone, and nods a bit to the Jedi as well as the people, while he takes a moment to shift his rifle along, then he begins to walk to follow wherever the Jedi would be.
"What was lost can be found." Is Jax's reply to the older Codru-Ji in regards to the jedi order being found. "You have me at a disadvantage on the location of this Sanctuary is not known to me." He looks to the other members of the patrol, "But I am sure we can get you there." He looks at Ban, Chani, and Aryn "You're the members have been involved in more actions than me on the planet. I will follow your lead. Though I would like to suggest to go on point? Perhaps help us find paths to help avoid the bulk of the First Order?"
The Corellian chuckles at Qutha's rejection of being a hostage. "I guess you're still stuck with us Qutha. Better luck next time." He says pulling his hood up to hide his features again from the atmosphere.
Ban Iskender inclines his head and shoulders to the Elder, inquiring evenly, "What is the count of your company, venerable sir?" Attired as he is in heavy armor and a green half-cape, with a sword and pistol sheathed at his thighs, he certainly looks less the legendary Jedi knight, and more of a highborn army officer. Jax's suggestion is answered, "We will have need of savers to front, rear, and flanks, in case of ambuscade. The head of the column is yours, should you wish."
"I guess they're not fans of plants, Jax." smiling wider, the Zelosian offers a shrug before he looks from face to face among the Codru gathered.
"Many mouths." Qutha goes into is affects, the haversack worn beneath his robe is drawn around until it rests over his belly - a number of compressed-dehydrate meals and ration bars sifted out, double checked, and almost overturned to get as much out as he can find with a small nod. "Not much, I'm very sorry. But I can live without." letting Chani work with the elders. "Help me share out the bars, mmm?" Qutha offers to the others while those 'in charge' do their work - happy to be a pleasant body among the lot of them for now it seems.
"Once we all get where you need to go, we can use the pouches for a proper meal for all as well, eh?"
"Very well.. come everyone, grab your things.." The elder says, and a good number of them rise up and begin to shuffle. "We number twelve in total, four children; good kids." He clarifies. At the reveal of ration bars, Qutha is stormed by children reaching with grabby hands to get the tasty treats he has. The others, slightly older, some younger, trudge out with rifles in hand and packs on their back. The elder is the last to leave, taking a moment to look around inside to ensure they had everyone before shuffling out with a cane to follow. "We need to cut through the park. -- Thatta way.." He points with the cane then grunts as he walks in that direction.
"You heard the Captain," The troopers say. "Spread out and let's cover the civilians." The Captain was Ban. Aryn joins the rest of the Jedi, going where ever it is Ban says she's needed most. She had no complaints with how this transpired or how they agreed to proceed. This was the most dangerous section of the city, so whatever lay ahead might still be a challenge for them. Qutha has earned the respect of the children, and they hang on/climb on him as the group marches.
The park is a large affair, with tall trees. Sunlight shines down from above casting a heavenly glow over the green grass. Godrays crisscross, accentuating the ancient white stone of old ruins that have become a memorial of sorts at the city's center. Ancient structures stand out, some repurposed for playgrounds, others for statues or mementos of a time long ago. Unfortunately, the park is riddled with stormtroopers. Most congregate near an APC (10), while two patrols of five (5) walk along the outer edge of the park.
<<"Two patrols of five.. ten total.. up ahead, then a APC further back. Looks like it's down for repair or something..">> Comes the hushed voice of one of their Republic soldiers. <<"Moving to engage.. keep the civilians back.">>
Republic troops move ahead and open fire then, drawing the patrols out and into range for the Jedi to engage.
Aryn moves toward the open, drawing her lightsaber and preparing for the combat ahead.
Before Chani can suggest they attempt to maneuver through this obstacle through more peacful and less conflictive means, the Republic troopers begin to open fire. Before, the sound of combat was nothing more than a distant echo reverberating off the city walls. Now it's upon them, and Chani draws the cylindrical hilt from her left hip and quickly disengages from the group. She moves forward to find placement against one of the building's walls, back armor scraping along the rough surface. Before the Stormtroopers converge through the chokepoint, Chani depresses the activation stud on the stunsaber's hilt and its white beam comes to life around the extended metal baton. The troopers in white begin to file past, and Chani waits until she counts five.
Then she emerges, jabbing the stunsaber into a passing trooper's side. She immediately turns that into a single-handed swing towards the left, catching the next trooper. It's by the blaster rifle only, and Chani's hand joins the stunsaber's hilt to help keep the rifle forced backwards and unable to move.
Ban Iskender takes a position at the rear of the column as they proceed through the park, and come upon hostile forces. A vehicle broke down to leave this squad here? "Unfortunate." The skirmish breaks out, and Ban's sword is drawn, igniting with an emerald radiance. He seeks to reduce the volume of return fire that could menace the column, and a dash into close quarters, a thrust, sweeping parry into a second cut ending in a sidelong lunge reduce the number of
No discomfort for Qutha being swarmed - though he lack for any sugary sweets besides a few packets of berries in crystalized honey for his own stock. <<"I see them. I shall shield the children, I haven't a blaster... Nor would anyone wish me to have one.">> murmuring into comms while me moves.
His stunsaber extends, even if he has barely any concept of how to use it, with intent to get the children to a place where they can be out of sight and protected from potential harm. "Little ones, we must keep you hidden - but once done, if we've all done a good job, I'll break out what sweets I have. Alright?" coddling, maybe. But an important job to play with others there to wage war.
Jax had been at the front of the group ready to bring his saber up in a protective action to deflect a blaster bolt. Then comes report of the APC up ahead and the troops already engaging. Jax surges ahead into the group, his footsteps quickly guided by the force as he moves safer than he should then with a leap through the air, his blue saber blade extends with a hiss. He lands in the middle of one of the 5 man unit of troopers, his saber slashing out in a quick slash ending one trooper before he can respond and his blade comes around to stable the trooper behind him in the chest. Though as the dying stormtrooper finger pulls down on the trigger of his carbine, Jax shifts out of the way allowing the blaster bolts to strike a third. Jax sighs, "Finding a way around would have been better and this is unfortunate. Ban do you think we can repair the transport? Maybe make this less unfortunate?"
Ban Iskender takes a position at the rear of the column as they proceed through the park, and come upon hostile forces. A vehicle broke down to leave this squad here? "Unfortunate." The skirmish breaks out, and Ban's sword is drawn, igniting with an emerald radiance. He seeks to reduce the volume of return fire that could menace the column, and a dash into close quarters, a thrust, sweeping parry into a second cut ending in a sidelong lunge reduce the number of rifles able to return fire by three. Jax is answered, "Not without undue delay, sir. I've no intention of becoming a stationary target for either air or artillery."
Aryn steps toward a trio of rushing troopers, swinging and missing one that tumbles by, then committing to attacking the other two. Her attack was not a maiming one, but a quick pair of elegant strikes that cut /just/ deep enough to drop both trooper to the ground. She turns to call out to Chani, "CHANI, ONE COMING YOUR WAY!" Aryn regrets not being able to contend with the trooper a moment ago, but it was a consequence of committing to the other two.
Troopers by the APC have hunkered down, and they call in more soldiers that begin coming out of the ruins. One of the Republic soldiers yells out, "Well rekk me, it's a whole huttsucking platoon!"
Fifteen (15) troopers move to replace the patrols that just got succinctly put down (save one). Ten (10) more are hunkered down near the APC as they try to bring its turret online. The engineer is slamming a massive hammer against something on top, trying to get the turret mount unjammed.
"It's almost like we should have tried to find a way around quietly!" Chani yells it out after the trooper remarks in surprise that they're not dealing with a few enemy combatants but a whole platoon. Chani wades through the stromtroopers without the destructive force of the others. None of her strikes kill. At most, the contact she makes with the enemy will leave bruises and the embarrassment of being taken out by a girl barely over five feet. Both relying on Aryn's callout and her own sense within the Force, Chani moves in the kind of eerie, preternatural way that seems impossible. Her body hunches, right shoulder dipping and tucking down, and the blaster bolt meant for it carves out some of the duracrete and leaves a flaming hole in the ground.
Chani sweeps around, using broad footwork to keep the movement measured and in control, and the left to right sweep of her stunsaber smashes into the enemy trooper's right arm. He collapses, and Chani, this time not misjudging the distance, stabs the tip of her white beam forward. It catches the next trooper up and under the arm pit, because both of his arms are raised to fire. Improperly, she might add, because his elbows are up. Not very stable. Also leaves him vulnerable. He, too, collapses in a heap on the ground.
Merek looks to the incoming troopers while he takes a moment to begin firing along into the soldiers. With that in mind, it doesn't look like he's doing a lot, all the same he takes the time to take a position.
"Fair enough, It would be unfortunate for Rogue squadron to happen by and find the transport. So I see your reasoning." Jax says as he drops into a form 3 defense, his blade held high and back as he presents his free hand to the incoming stormtroopers. "Chani, that would have been the wise course of action indeed. It just seems that is not what has happened. We get to play the sabbaac hand dealt to us. Though it seems my hands are always an Idiots Arry of cards." Jax lauchs into to the villains. His saber striking down three more of the troopers.
Ban Iskender cuts down one foe, then another, needing a pair of lunging thrusts to strike down the backpedaling second trooper. Aloud, he voices, "Mister Black: dissuade the gentleman affecting repairs on the turret, if you would." He'd slept for most of a day after the action at Outpost Besh, and his familiar pattern of speech has returned in full.
"We're Chrysilized! We can fight." "No. This not a place for children." "But we're still here!" the quartet of children begin arguing as Qutha foolishly attempts reason. Shaking his head and motioning for them to keep down and offering out his canteen to give them some water. Peeping up, there are more troopers incoming and Qutha's brows attempt to meet over his nose.
"So many." shaking his head, frowning and looking to the children.
<"YOU! Hands up!"> a stormtrooper, blaster raised and charging towards his position. Too far for anything else and definitely no target for his close quarters ability Qutha listens to his instincts, hunkering back while his free hand moves outwards, a warding gesture.
"Keep back!!" and much to the Zelosian's surprise the trooper is flung backwards with a rattle of armor. Not enough to ground maybe, but to take the wind out of him for sure.
Aryn jogs forward, moving alongside Chani though not facing her. Aryn cuts down a pair of troopers before stepping backward whilst spinning her saber to orient behind her to impale the trooper running upon her. The lightsaber makes a slight scratchy noise when she pulls it free and orients it ahead of her again. Her free hand is held out for balance, and she turns toward the danger. Almost immediately, a blaster bolt sinks against her mid-section and she rocks backward a step, seemingly unfazed despite the impact. "The only way is forward, now." Aryn did not wait to be told, they needed to close the distance to those troopers by the APC.
Blaster fire is coming in from their front, troopers laid out on the ground do not move after falling. The weapons they discard are kicked away by Green squad as to keep any would be survivors from shooting them in their backs.
Merek finds a place to keep cover, while he begins lifting up that rifle. He aims down the sights to one of the NCO Troopers, then he begins to shoot, filling the officer with blaster bolts while he takes them to the floor. He nods a bit to the party, with a thumbs up while the man motions then to keep forward.
Agreeing with Aryn's sentiment of moving forward, Chani makes to do just that, stepping over the fallen. There are stormtroopers in the way, and the break she was going to make is quickly blocked off. Blaster fire still blitzes by, but Chani focuses on those immediately ahead of her, using a chopping motion with the stunsaber's blade to knock the barrel off center and ensuring that it's not aiming at her torso to discharge instead. It goes off towards the ground, kicking up little chunks of duracrete and filling the air around her with the scent of burnt ozone and the stale smell of crete dust. "I can't get through!" Someone else will hopefully have far more luck than she does, because all she can do is prepare for her opponent's next move
Jax takes off at a run and by the simple application of the force he able to bounce off a rock into a summersault over the troopers. Then makes his way to the NCOs. "I have it." He calls back as he slashs at one of the NCOs and dodges. He raises his saber in a slaute to the dodging NCO. Then with a quick flurish of his blade he kills the target. Then sweeps the legs out from beneath the target.
Battle is chaotic, and for an instant, Ban is a whirl of motion, deflecting bolts, fouling shots, and cutting through rifles that are turned on the squad at large. Three stormtroopers fall with their weapons, and he repeats louder, "Mister Black! The trooper on the vehicle's turret, if you would!"
Caught in the arm. The very arm he just flung that trooper away from himself with and the impact from the plasma bolt turns Qutha about a full one hundred and eighty degrees and drops him down to the ground, letting out a "OHHHhhhhh-HOH-HO-HUYAHHH OHHH" That hurts. It hurts -so- much. Mind reeling and trying to get his bearings, he looks over cover towards the others before he turns his gaze to the children again.
"See?" a little more shrill than he intended, but what is one going to do at this point? That rekking hurt. He turns and stands briefly, surveying and attempting to sweep up stone, debris and fallen blasters into a flechette aimed at stormtroopers. Instinctively moving his injured limb and gaining another "HYAH-AH-AH-AH-AHHHHHHHH" before he tumbles back down to his knees.
SMACK. BANG. CLANK. CLANG. CLANNNNNNNNNNG! BANG! -- Was the sound of the private bringing down the sledge that suddenly unjams the turret on the APC. The turret begins to move on its own, barrel lowering to sight in the nearest threat, the Jedi Knight Jax Greystorm. It opened fire then, its sound dominating the battlefield.
Aryn cuts down the last trio of stormtroopers, moving through the park and closer to the entrenched NCOs still firing at them. "We must take out that APC gun!" She begins an approach toward the hunkered NCOs, her lightsaber held out to her side, the blade behind her much like her cape!!
Laser fire thunks against the ground, pocking up dirt and splintering trees. The battle is a bit chaotic when they make it into the park itself. The NCOs are holding their line, and with the turret online now, they have a hardhitting weapon.
Merek begins to maneuver forward while he finds a nice place to settle in, then he takes a moment lifting that rifle, aiming the sight upon the turret. He begins following the pattern, then he takes a moment to shoot. The blast slams right into the turret, damaging it while the metal begins to melt, making it ineffective even if not taking it all down completely.
Chani hasn't been able to advance this whole time. Now that the close contingent of troopers is down, she glances up from the field of battle and deeper into the park, where the APC is continuing to put fire down range towards them. Qutha is screaming somewhere, she thinks. "Is Qutha alright?" She speaks it loudly, and it reverberates off the buildings surrounding them. Once again, that tickle of danger in the back of her mind. This time it's not her. This time it's past her, so close that she can feel it. At least, she will feel it, because what she sees in her mind is about to happen. Letting the Force guide her hands again, Chani tries to snap up her stunsaber to deflect the blaster bolt, but it's imprecise, and Lord Iskender is struck anyway.
"Lord Ban!" She calls out to him, as much a silent question as it is anything else. Aryn's right. They need to engage that APC. Chani turns to run, willing the Force to aid her. She practically trips and plants her face over one of the troopers laying in the way, which forces her to stumble. But she moves, nonetheless, going deeper into the park with every intent of trying to put a stop to the deadly force represented by the vehicle's gunner.
"Hey, you ok?" one of the children poking at the arm of the wax faced zelosian who narrowly sees the shot coming his way and drops down out of sight and fully in cover, breathing hard for a moment, "Oh! I'm fine... FINE. This is fine. Everything is fine. I promise." Among the charring on his cloak and robes there is a small bloom of green spreading there, "This is fine."
Remaining in cover for now, eyes closed and getting his breath, Qutha smiles as best he can to the kids being watched. A good thing he's not out there. Liability. "You... you there. Share that packet. We'll be moving on soon again."
Up he pops again, using his -un-shot- arm this time while keeping the other tucked close - an upward sweep meant to hurtle pebbles and detritus among the Order troops by the APC, more distraction - perhaps a chance to debilitate if he can. The sound of clattering on armor must be fairly neat at least?
The sounds of the APC's turret starting to move and draw bead on him causes Jax to stop knowing that he won't be able to deflect the shot or dodge. "Oh, Kriff." He mumers as he lowers his saber to his side and holds up his off hand. The force gathered around him as the energy bolt strikes the jedi knight. THere's a flash of light and Jax is still standing there whole and healthy.
"He slashes out at the NCO and two more fall to his saber. He calls out, "That one made my arm numb."
Ban Iskender staggers when the impact of a long range blaster bolt strikes him in the back of the ribs. A broad burn marks his pale grey armor, but the worst seems to have been absorbed by the plates, as he barely slows. "I endure," he assures Chani aloud, before fixing his eye on the distant carrier and it's squad of veteran stormtroopers. A gathering of the Force around him and the soldier starts into a dash, sword upraised in salute. In the blink before his salute ends in a sharp downward cut, he has crossed the space between them, cutting down a pair of the foemen swiftly thereafter.
Aryn makes it to the APC in the quick moments that follow, its cyclic rate of fire chewing up the ground around the park and splitting trees. Her first target is disabling that defense, and she does it with a single pass of her blade. The steaming hot barrel group of the turret falls, crushing one of the NCOs hunkered down beneath it. The final NCO turns in time to be impaled by Aryn's sapphire blade. She draws it free of his body, ducking when the Private that remained engaged her.
Green Squad blasts the remaining private to bits, dropping him in a twitching mess of pain before he promptly passed out and away. The family the Jedi had been safeguarding comes into view now that the area is clear. The children are trying to dote over Qutha's wound! Wanting to wrap it and stop his hurt. The old man with them points to the ruins with his cane and says, "Our stop is here, Jedi. You have our thanks." Sparing little ceremony, the old man herds his kin toward the secret entrance of the ruins, and they disappear from view there after.