Log:Resistance: Reclamation Duty
After much searching and greasing of hands, the lone group of slaves taken from the mission on Akiva by the pirates there has been tracked down, and Callax is mounting an expedition with his own cell to get them back. Resistance personnel interested in assisting in the recovery of the lost slaves eminently welcome.
This plot is related to the events in The Catacombs of Akiva
A few weeks have passed since the slavers were dusted down in the catacombs under Akiva. There, despite a withering assault carried out by the Resistance strike team led by Captain Pava, a single speeder filled with slaves managed to escape the carnage. For some, an unfortunate turn of events, but who can track a bunch of slaves after they've practically vanished into the ether? After all, the target was the man who hired the slavers themselves, not the unfortunates. The Resistance does its best, but repatriating slaves is not its core duty.
And yet something in Flight Officer Dalso - something that, were one aware of his background, would be easily understood - has lingered, desiring justice. These past few weeks he has traveled the seedier spacelanes, collected information, and done...well, whatever one does when one wants to track down slaves and likely won't want to talk about it. The results have grown more and more disturbing, a spiral that started on the block had has since led all the way to Ryloth, from whence so many of the victims came. There, built into a bluff far away from civilization in the windblown badlands far north of the planet's equator, a laboratory has been built, a laboratory whose lights are visible even from the surface as Callax and his merry crew bring the /Stellar Jewel/ and its hold full of heroes down overhead. Moving silently - or as silently as a transport can go - the Simiyar's dark hull plies the night to deposit the group several miles to the south of the facility, where a speeder truck carried in the bay awaits the group; Callax, clad in his dark purple powered armor, makes his way down into the bay where he awaits the group to assemble, smiling in a flat, grim way that makes his pretty features seem more like marble than warm flesh.
"Thank you, all of you, for coming," he addresses the group, hands tucked behind his back. "Not sure what we'll find there, but it's clear that the missing slaves, and undoubtedly others, have been delivered there. So. I'm afraid we'll have to reconnoiter on the move, and do what we can - but. Thank you, as I said. I wasn't expecting such..." Blue eyes settle upon each face, some military, some mystical, all heroic in the opinion of their bearer. "August company."
Ektor snorts and rubs his nose at roughly the same time Callax looks his way. "..Sorry," he mutters, half-heartedly. "So, uh.. not sure what we're looking for, but find whatever it is, yeah?" he paraphrases. "Got it." A lazy nod follows.
Joined by the merry band of heroes, Aryn sticks out like a sore thumb with her medical satchel. It is coyote tan pack pressed against the flat-black plated armor and jungle designed camo fabric of trousers and blouse. She fits a poncho of impossibly expensive shadowsilk over her torso, then clicks her lightsaber in place upon her belt. Callax earns the young Doctor's attention, but she has no words for the man beyond a look that conveyed her readiness to begin
Elrych Cometburn adds to Ektor, "I think he means enemy number a compliment." Its a wild guess but the shades wearing Jedi gives a thumbs up before taking a deep breath and finding a center with the force.
Finn glances down at the rifle in his hands, making some last-minute checks. A lifetime of training comes rolling back easily - loaded, sights calibrated, trigger pressure optimal. It's amazing how much he might have changed as a person, yet all the tools remain right there at his fingertips. He looks up when Dalso speaks, nodding his head but saying nothing. Instead, he simply slings the rifle around into his hands - muzzle aimed at the deck - and waits.
Merek has on the specialist armor which he bought, the black packs on it adjusted about, while he takes a moment to check on the pack within the F-11 which he wields. There's a nod about to Callax, while he begins to place on that gear, waiting about while listening to the briefing also.
Yuun joins the others and takes in the information provided to them. He's dressed in a new way long shorts, with a cloak like tunic, as it's tied about his waist. Dark blue sleeves run along his arms and a pair of black fighting gloves on his hand. He clips his lightsaber to his belt as he joins up with the others. He takes note of their numbers as he listens to Callax. "Don't apologize, you asked, we came. Thats what we do." he says to Callax.
The trouble with being the ranking experienced trooper is that you get stuck making sure the equipment is all ready to go. Nova Korell, technically a Flight Officer 3rd, is checking over the speeder truck that'll serve as transport during the mission. She's listening as best she can, of course, but the job comes first. Her own mission pack is settled on one of the jump seats at the side of the bay, along with her Tracker carbine.
She finally checks the last bit of cargo. The speeder truck's as ready as it's ever going to get. She casually salutes the assembled mission team as she steps back over to her pack, beginning a last spot-check of her own equipment. "Transportation's ready to roll... if you'll pardon the expression."
She finds herself watching as Finn prepares his weapon, as if silently taking notes. This is the man who first stepped away from the First Order, the man whose conscience overrode years of training. It's almost like she expects to find some clue in how he handles the rifle. Her own checks unconsciously slow as her attention strays.
"Indeed," replies Callax to Yuun, a smile playing on his painted lips. "And for this I thank you. Slaves have no fate ahead of them but death in chains, unless we act." Before he joined the Resistance, Callax had served in several liberationalist unit, moral terrorists and enemies of the yoke. The mantra that passes his lips is one he's spoken many times, and it has the ring of it. "Well! Let's pile in and get to work."
Climbing into the cab of the truck and starting its humming engine, Callax awaits for the rest to pile into its open-topped bed before driving down the freighter's open loading ramp and out into the night. It's a cold night out, and the wind whips across the dusty ground in cutting gusts as the speeder travels across the landscape, its headlights off but Callax's enhanced vision and helmet systems letting him see as if it were the height of day. Having already surveilled the place from orbit, Callax's crew has already pinpointed the proper location from which to approach the location: the speeder pulls to a stop behind a tall ridge shielding their arrival from any ground-based sentries. Once piled out, Callax looks to the rest, hands on his hips as he looks up the ridge.
<< Let's climb up and get a better look, >> he says hrough his helm. << See what we can see, mmm? >>
Ektor vaults cheerfully into the back of the truck, setting his back to the cab throughout the ride and perching one elbow atop a bent knee. "Nice weather," he comments of the wind without any apparent irony. When it comes time to surveil the site personally, he clambers up the lee side of the ridge to peer through electrobinoculars. "Yyyyep, I see it," he mutters, noting few details of worth to the group.
Aryn emerges from their ride and looks up at the cliff. At the mention of climbing to get a better look, she frees her gloves pinned beneath her belt and begins to pull them over her small hands. A slow test of her grip with each hand renders gentle TICK-TICK noises of tension indicative that the gloves were tight and would not slip whilst climbing.
So begins the effort of climbing, and the young Jedi uses common sense in her ascent, making it to the point where she could see, without silhouetting herself to peer down at their area of operations. Aryn is no soldier, and even though she spends much of her training with a General, this has not availed her any semblance of tactical knowledge or know-how. She's a doctor! So the details she takes in are probably overshadowed by the far more experienced and well trained soldiers that comprise their team.
Lady Aryn remains quiet for now, unless asked directly to speak. She learned once, when Zonk was still alive, that her inexperienced commentary was not an appreciated addition to the usual chatter that spawned during such operations!
Elrych Cometburn isn't having the luck ektor is. His shades are fogging up after the climb. "Geez... I can't see drek." He takes off his shades and tries to defog them on his robes. There was s a double take to Ektor before the Corellian reaches over towards the microbinoculars. "C'mon. share for once you okd pirate."
Finn peers down over the ridge, pressed down against the ground with the rifle strapped and resting at the small of his back. He lifts his head just a fraction, peering out for a moment. His brow furrows in response and he shifts back down, laying on his back and bringing the rifle back around to rest in his hands. He looks from left to right at the others, glancing to Elrych and then Ektor in expectation.
Yuun gets into the speeder and sits next to Lady Aryn, he looks around as they make it to their destination. He's quiet as well, but after a few moments, "It's nice to see you again Lady Aryn." he says to her as the speeder comes to a stop. He gets out as the others do, he moves to an area which gives him a good vantage of the surrounding area so that he can attempt to get a better ley of the land.
Merek makes his way up along the main ridge, then he brings the F-11D up with the sight on it shifted to look towards the encampment. <<"Two durasteel doors, within the face of those rocks, crates... Containers, towers set up on both sides, guards standing upon them posted about. Four on Tango, armed with rifles and repeaters.">> He then begins to shift the sight of the weapon to a tower also.
Time to leave almost leaves her behind. Nova hastily finishes her gear check and climbs into the back of the speeder truck. It's an uncomfortable ride, this being a large mission team and a bigger truck, and the terrain doesn't help.
But they get there at last. With the place being over a rise, Nova waits for the climbing to start, then makes her own way up last, finding a good, low spot at the top of the rise and focusing her quadnoculars on their destination.
<Confirming the doors in the rocks and the towers. These people aren't much on housekeeping: They've got a lot of stuff scattered around what's supposed to be a hidden outpost. Add in those towers, and 'hidden' is seriously called into question. I get the feeling this facility was designed by committee.>
With all that compiled, Callax makes it up the ridge himself, peering down through his armor optics. << Looks like there's plenty of places for cover, >> he replies adds. << Well, I'm not one for sneaky myself, at least not at this point in my career, but I'll happily take direction if someone's got a better idea than to get down there and kill them all at range. >>
Ektor exhales lazily, muttering, "I hate repeaters." Grinning at the more detailed reports, he passes the electrobinoculars to Elrych, and wonders over the comms, <What's your read, Moonbeam? We got the range to drop those heavy gunners before they see us? And I didn't hear nothing about visible cameras or scanners.. What's everybody think, there a quiet way to pull off this approach? Finn, buddy, let's hear it: you got any ideas?>
Elrych Cometburn takes the microbinoculors from Ektor and attempts to look into them. He has to take his head away a few times as if trying to get something right. Then he hands yhem back to Xer. "You're still ugly they broke." They didn't.
Yuun doesn't say anything, it's no point an pointing out the same information. He folds his arms against his chest as he looks out at their surroundings. "I think if we have those who are skilled at sniping take the shots or at least cover a group as we try to sneak towards this compound." he says as he looks to the assembled group.
Finn glances over when his name is called, raising his eyebrows. Once more he rolls over, shuffling up to peer down at the ridge and the encampment below. He watches it for a long moment, eyes scanning this way and that. A look of frustration crosses his face and he glances sidelong, looking to Ektor and shaking his head: "Stay low?"
Finn: Hero of the Resistance, everybody.
Merek leans forward to settle in and takes a position while he lifts up with the F-11D, taking a moment to speak into his comlink, <<"We can snipe the tangos that are in the towers, we can also take a path into the base from that ridge that's across the way. If we do get caught, repeaters will have that advantage. I think it is best we snipe the towers, then move in forward, what's your call?">> he asks, taking a moment to shift the pack which he has on him, charging the pack in that rifle of his while he nods a bit to the team.
Nova is still breathing hard from the rushed climb. <The longer we stay out here, the more chance we have of being discovered. Fast approach sounds good to me. If anybody has a rifle, now's the time to speak up; my carbine's too short-ranged for sniping duty.>
The decision made, then, Callax draws his pistol. << All right, >> he says, << Let's see if I can't get things started. Follow my lead! >> And up the ridge he goes - the nozzles on his backpack flaring blue, then brilliant blue-white, Callax is held aloft by the jets as he hurtles across the open space toward the towers. Pistol clearing its quickdraw rig on his armored thigh, Callax fires three times at the guards in their towers; one of them dies outright from a pair of blasts that scythe through the tower roof into his torso, while the other takes a shot through the gut - down, but not out, he's in serious trouble.
Ektor grins at Finn, lightly slugging the trooper in an armored shoulder. "Good plan. I like it: simple and easy to remember." Taking his binoculars back from Elrych with a snicker, he draws out his old civil war surplus pistol, and looks down the line as Merek and Nova speak up. "Sounds good. Can we do that and still stay low? I liked that part." A crooked grin and a sharp exhale as the Tionese pirate gets ready for a hurry-hobble. Then Callax says follow his lead and flies off to open fire. "If I knew THAT was an option, I'd have brought a wishbone!" Ektor complains as he starts hustling toward their mark.
To come down from their height, Aryn takes the way she came, using her armor to protect her during certains bouts of descent so she can slide. At the bottom, she can hear the fight has already begun, and sensing she might need to defend herself, she unclips the curved lightsaber hilt attached upon her belt. She holds this weapon with her right hand and lightly jogs with it held at her side, NOT YET activated.
As she makes it to the first point of cover, a tall crate, she ducks behind it and kneels down, taking a moment to swipe the bright blonde from her eyes and look toward the doors carved out of the side of the cliff she'd seen earlier. A moment is taken to look for a computer terminal that might possibly be the key to opening these. She waits to rise though, until she's heard the all clear from the soldiers in her team.
Elrych Cometburn slides down the incline and pulls the lightsaber from his utility belt. He doesn't ignight it just yet. "Run a first round and once the covering fire is up I will move in."
"Now /this/ I understand," Finn announces, slinging himself over the ridge and taking off at a run. He's quick - years of training under the First Order have set him up for this. He breaks out ahead of the pack swiftly, carbine raised at eye level as he quickly closes in on the gate guards. The carbine bursts three rounds of blistering red-white energy, the former stormtrooper wasting no time or energy in his attack.
Yuun runs with Aryn and Elyrch as they all begin moving in. He's not tapping into the force, his lightsaber isn't ignited at all yet, no need to draw attention to himself just yet. As the shooting starts, Yuun slides behind a crate where Aryn is, "Oh this is going to be fun." he looks to her with a smile. He than looks from where he is cover is and begins checking to see if any of the guards were taking down yet or not. ALos he's watching to see if there are any other bad guys comign to join in this party.
Merek lifts up on a knee while he takes a moment to bring up the F-11D rifle, then he checks the pack while he aims the sight onto the tower guard while the team begins to move into position. He checks for wind, while he licks at lips, then he places a finger on the trigger.
He then releases the safety on that rifle, and pulls on the trigger. There's a crimson bolt of pure energy which coalesces to a slug which fires from it, into the tower guard, taking him to the tower's floor while he cocks a mechanical check on the weapon to charge.
"I forgot our leader's love of good theater... but he's sure got their attention!" Nova comments with a grin, her fading Imperial accent strengthening in her excitement. "Let's go have some fun!"
She crawls onto the top of the berm, intending to lunge over it and go. But her plating's caught on one of the rocks at the top! She pushes hard, grimacing. "I'm coming!" she promises, drawing a leg up and giving a heave.
And she goes over... and falls flat as something jerks her to a stop. Stupid webbing! She pulls it loose from the scrub and scrambles to her feet... and then her greaves come loose and slip to her knees as the webbing stretches and sags. Decidedly out of uniform now, she claps a hand over her pink athletic briefs and waves the rest on. "I'll catch up!" At least there's nobody to shoot at her for now, and she can pull her armor back together safely!
The sudden burst of violence is rewarded by the screams of dying men and alarms blaring from hidden loudspeakers build into the rock. The klaxons wail, their sound lke a chorus of dying animals screaming through a synthesizer. << Thought we killed them fast enough, >> Callax mutters over link. << Damn it! >>
A rumbling sounds, layered below all and the heavy blast doors in the rock begin to open - and, hurrying out with rifles in hand, more armed soldiers begin to boil out into the field, ready to fire as soon as targets present themselves.
Ektor chose the time honored 'run at the enemy while firing like a maniac' strategy, and it has worked well for him, so far. "GET EM," he opines in a nuanced and complex tactical insight, whilst wounding one of the gate guards. As Finn runs swiftly past him, the pilot hollers, "Showoff!" after the trooper who lays waste to the squad of guards. As he catches up, breathing a bit heavily, he accuses with a tight grin, "You didn't even stay low." Then eyes widen as the gates disgorge a crowd of enemies, "OH, DREK." As a bolt screams past him, he instinctively returns fire, dropping one of the new defenders with a wild trio of shots.
"I believe our definitions of what's fun are vastly different, Mr. Yuun. Please be careful." Aryn, following her own advice, remains out of the main battle and stares down the distant doors. They've opened and it's been the source of the incoming flux of people. Aryn moves her position to place a solid object between her and danger. Her thoughts go to her team mates, in particular, if any are harmed. Choosing between her lightsaber and the medic satchel; Aryn moves her satchel closer and squeezes it with a shaking hand.
"Yeah this isn't so fun... now shooting drek in a fighter, thats fun." Says Elrych right before taking off at a run. He moves across the field towards the gate at break neck speed, his volumous robes waving behind him. His blue blade ignights and strikes out at the first attacking guard through the gate. He is able to dodge twice before the Jedi bests him, removing his hands from his body. The shock either kills him or causes him to faint.
As the blasterfire comes roaring back at Finn, he ducks down to one side and shifts out of the way - the bolts harmlessly striking the ground behind him. He then assumes the stormtrooper stance - that is, feet squared with the shoulders and blaster carbine raised. No cover. No ducking and weaving now. He simply levels the carbine and takes his shoots, blasterfire howling through the air over the heads of two of the guards before clipping one of them. A sheen of sweat coats his forehead, his eyes taking on a look of grim determination.
Merek looks to the gate when it begins to open, and more of the guards come from it. The sight lines up with the next foe, and with a light pull of the trigger, a crimson bolt maneuvers from the muzzle of the weapon to strike into one of them, clean center with a level of skill. <<"That's a Tango, we have another few on you, four it looks like. Use the sides of the gate as protection cover if you need. Moonbeam, I'll cover you moving forward.">> Noticing that there are issues, he waits for her being into the fight, then charges another in the pack. <<"Status update?">> He might be in an advantageous position, but he can't see in the plae.
He nods his head to Aryn, "I will be careful, we will try to be safe, do what yo uneed to do." he says to her. He places a hand on her shoulder, "We got this." he says to her and he rushes forward, allowing the force to surround him and flow through him. HIs speed picks up and he's a blur, coming up to the guards as they leave the gate. His lightsaber ignites and he leaps the rest of the distance. He sees Elrych fighting, and lands and slides forward. As he slides his blade swipes waist high to one of the guards dropping him in two pieces. Shifting his stands and coming up on his feet, Yuun's blue blade lances outwards in a wide sweeping wave cutting down two more guards.
"We hold them here as best we can." he calls to Elrych as he brings his blade up into a guard knwoig that now they will be the focus of the troopers as the others of their team swarm in as well.
<Copy, Merek... All units, I'm moving,> Nova calls, hurrying for the gates. She's supposed to be an experienced trooper, yet here she is lagging behind the squad because she can't keep her own armor under control. If that's not embarrassing, nothing is.
She winces in faint sympathy, watching the Jedi turn slaver guards into humanoid sushi, and stacks up beside Aryn at the gate. "We've been lucky so far, Doc. Hope we won't need you for a while yet. Nothing personal," she says, giving the woman a quick smile.
She pivots around the gate's mounting point, opening fire on the goons she can see running to reinforce the gate. The hasty shots almost all miss, though at least one punches through armor and smacks the goon inside it. She'll have to do better than that if they're going to come out of this!
As the gates open, a broad shaft of light falls across the landscape - beyond a brief garage corridor is revealed, and more armored soldiery prepared to meet intruders. These are hardcore mercenaries, black-armored and heavily armed, but the appearance of people with bloody energy swords and the swift death of the vanguard sees them falling into cover and opening fire from relative safety (assuming there's really safety from anyone with a lightsaber and yen to brandish.) Their fire is furious, but it's with the sudden surprise and desperation that only /wizard swordsmen/ can muster in a hard man.
Ektor exhales in relief as the wizards with their laser swords seize the eye. Hustling up to the side of the open doors, he dodges heavy fire through a mix of reflexes and dumb luck. Grinning in the grip of adrenaline, he hollers inside, "Look over here!" Immediately before firing inside in a surprisingly competant show of pistolry, dropping one armored guard at his barricade and badly wounding another. Ducking back out of return fire with a jagged laugh.
Aryn is left to herself for now, allowed to draw up the courage to fight other sentient beings. It was one thing to kill monsters and dark entities, but people were another matter entirely. Aryn takes in a steady, heavy breath and lifts her lightsaber up studying its curved design, her gloved thumb over the activation stud. It takes a moment of clarity to draw her strength from the Force, then she knows what she needs to do.
The area around Aryn lights up as she presses the activation stud down, springing forth a beam of pure sapphire blue energy that extends to a point of 1.2m of humming length. Each subtle motion, even the slightest, produces a WUMMMMM noise that can be heard from Aryn's immediate vicinity. Rising up from cover, Aryn is highlighted now as a target and she begins to move toward the doors.
Jedi are said to possess abilities and feats of precognition that allows them to react to things before they happen. Aryn's motions, and the graceful influence she conveys of her lightsaber bring truth to that statement when she intercepts three blaster bolts mid-walk, and redirects them back to their orgin with a respective twist following each. Aryn does not have to watch these bolts find their new homes to know she's been successful. She feels it deep down, but her justification for doing so was defense as illustrated by her sporting defensive lightsaber technique.
Arms and other appendeges fly against the back ground of the sky severed from their bodies still freshly smoldering at the ends and holding weapons. Serene music could play and it would almost be... morbidly beautiful. Reality though is that Elrych just hacked up a couple of guards for dare standing up to a lightsaber and someone who knew how to use it. "Sorry blokes... better luck next time."
The flash of the blasterfire through the air, the sound of shouting and screaming, the angry hum of lightsabers cleaving through the air - through people. Finn takes a knee, continuing to fire at the guards. The first shot goes wide as suddenly, imagery from long ago floods back. The desert. Night. Blood and blasterfire. Explosions. He shakes his head, willing away the imagery as he brings up his carbine and levels it with his eye. The trigger is depressed twice, two red shots bringing down the second-to-last of the guards. He takes a moment, brushing a hand across his sweaty brow and breathing heavily.
"Huh," he breathes, turning to watch as the lightsabers tear through several of the guards. He lifts a hand, as though to adjust his helmet only to realise he's not wearing one.
<<"Alright, I'm packing up to come to you all.">> Merek mentions to the comlink, then he lifts up his rifle along the shoulder, while he begins to maneuver from the position to meet up with the main team, making his way along in the sand with scarf waving with a nod to the people when he comes up on them also.
Yuun is weaving through the blaster fire as Aryn is batting blaster bolts back into the guards and Elrych clearing a path. As Finn and the others shoot the remaing troopers, Yuun starts moving into the building, his blade up in a guard position as he begins reaching out with the force try to feel if there are any other guards near this area or not. As he reaches out he feels that there is life....he moves further in...it's hard to get a good situation, but he does sense there are more life. <<We have more people here, but it's far into the mountain, I will try to do better at sensing where they may be.>> he calls into his comms.
<Our turn to cover you, Sniper,> Nova observes, nodding to Aryn and opening fire again. This time her three-round burst hits twice, taking down the last guard.
<Looks clear for the moment. Everybody, sound off if you're injured!> This has been going remarkably well; this kind of luck can't hold forever. Nova retains her stacked-up position and watches for more trouble from inside.
Blasters roar, lightsabers sizzle, and everywhere the coiling plumes of blaster smoke - and then it's over. Dead men lie everywhere, and all that remains is the blaring whine of the klaxons, which echo off the rocks and into the darkness behind you. Red stone and gray durasteel hide spilled blood but poorly.
The guards, all dead, bear no markings on their armor, but are a collection of races. A dead Rodian, brought down as he attempted to escape the carnage, lies in the open doorway at the far end of the garage, revealing a passage cut in the stone leading down into the rock and underground, lit with phosphotubes and floored with metal grating, which beckoning you all down into the earth twists past bunkrooms, a small lounge, a mess hall with a kitchen. The signs of long-term habitation, but by parties that remain yet nameless and unseen beyond the corpses behind you. The klaxons fade after a while, as if whatever systems inside the complex grow bored with the noise themselves, then eventually cut it out.
Finally the passage ends with another of those large doors, though this one but a single rectangular slab of durasteel. 'LAB ACCESS' is painted across its surface in bold red Aurabesh capitals. A panel is set into the rock by the door, set with options for a keypad entry or a code cylinder.
<< Well, >> breathes Callax quietly, traveling amid the group, << Guess this is the place. Anyone have security training, or should we try and cut through? >>
<Woo!> Ektor hoots, before answering Nova more clearly, <We're looking good, Moonbeam.> Cackling to Finn with a broad smile, he quips, "Doing good, Sarge! Keep it up and drinks are on me, back at base, yeah?" He checks the charge on his pistol, nods sharply once and prepares to enter the mountain with the rest of the team. Eyeing the 'LAB ACCESS' sign warily, he grunts, "Eh, drek. This ain't gonna be one of them 'experiments on slaves' kinda outfits, is it?" A shame of his head answers the security question.
Aryn makes it to the doors, her weapon held out to her side still humming as the squad regroups. By the time they reach her, Aryn has deactivated her weapon, recalling the bright beam blade with a protesting squeal. While attaching it back to her belt, Aryn turns to Nova, who had addressed her earlier, and nods. "It appears I was needed sooner than later." Nova's nod is returned.
Aryn takes the rear position of their group following after the seasoned fighters of the Resistance. By taking their lead, Aryn is spared the responsibility of deciding the fate of the mission or making decisions. This settles well upon her, much like the silence she conveys as they arrive at the Lab Access. Curious.
Elrych glances around, breathing a bit deeper from the slight work out he just had but no where near out of breath. "huh..." He thinks on Ektor's words, "Maybe... that would suck. I might loose my lunch then." He shouldn't have had such a heavy midday meal right before a combat action. "Well, Xer. Why don't you go in first. Seniority and all that drek."
Finn once more rises to his feet once the action reaches a momentary lull. He keeps his blaster clasped in one hand, the other wiping more sweat away from his brow. He walks past the dead or dying guards, glancing down at them momentarily. He almost takes pause but in the end he just pushes on, joining the rest of the group by the Lab Access door.
Merek settles up next to the entry way to the lab access, then he takes a moment to place a datastick into the access panel, beginning to unlock a few security tumblers, flicking a few of the switches on the device while he taps along to input commands. Then he nods to the team, looking to Nova, "Alright, I think I have this for you, should be easier." He then takes the panel to lean back from while he shifts that rifle about from the shoulder forward while he lifts that up wielding.
Yuun is aware of his surroundings, but still he's trying ot get a better sense of where the other life forms are. He sighs a little as he isn't getting anywhere. Figuring he will try later, he powers off his lightsaber, but he doesn't put it back on his belt. "We should setup a perimeter, just in case there are more guards and they try to regroup.
<That's a relief. I'd suggest caution. We still don't know what's in here,> Nova replies, checking her weapon's charge and giving her repaired webbing a final tug to make sure it won't come loose again. She nods to Aryn. "Glad to have you as always, Doc. You're handy."
And inside they go. While Yuun's suggestionis a good one, she's not in charge. And she's going to be busy: There's a computerized lock on the door they find. Nodding her acknowledgement to Merek, she pulls out her own slicing unit, connects up the scomp-link, and gets to work.
Most of a minute later, the door unlocks! "Take a bow, Merek," she says, hastily packing away the slicing kit and unslinging her carbine. "Just don't stay for an encore. We're good to go inside."
The door hisses open with the ridiculous speed that mag-sealed doors tend to posess; beyond is another corridor. Down here, the lighting is hospital-bright, everything spotlessly clean, from the polished durasteel walls to the black no-slip tile that covers the floor. The corridor is lined with more doors, each one of then set with a large transparisteel window, the rooms beyond each are filled with various scientific and technical equipment. Empty surgical theaters, computer rooms, offices. A room that looks suspiciously like a morgue. Most of the rooms bear signs that whomever was here dropped everything and fled - spilled caf, scattered papers, the like - possibly no sooner than when the sirens went off.
<< Oh, lovely, >> mutters Callax grimly from his place in the party. << Well. Doctor? I suspect this is turning into your show, now. >>
Ektor scans the laboratory/morgue gazing down the sights of his blaster, grimacing and muttering, "This ain't looking much better on that 'creepy experiment' angle, yeah?" A cursory search of the room doesn't reveal much. "Somebody left in a hurry, but I ain't sure where.. Anybody else?"
"This appears to be a standard lab for testing. Hard to tell /what/ they're testing without diving into memory banks and analyzing the data. That takes time. My recollection is that our mission is recovering errant slaves. As it appears this place was abandoned, I believe it's safe to by-pass for now until that objective is complete." Aryn had stepped inside to look around, but she did not bother to touch anything, or disturb work stations. It was hard to tell what might be important.
Aryn did make out the shape of a morgue with a bank of cold-storage containment; the gentle hum of power conduits were the dead giveaway. She peers in through the window, looking over the containment through the low dim lighting of blue hue. She recognized that a lot of the equipment was Arkanisian, the origin of her own medical training which seemed to nudge the notion of genome therapy into her mindseye. Aryn swallows a sickening feeling in her stomach and glances toward the terminals, but remains quiet for now. They had a mission first, questions came later.
"You can say that again..." Elrych echo's Ektor's sentiment reguarding the Lab/morgue they've entered. The Jedi has deactivated his lightsaber for safety of others but the black and gold cylindrical object remains in his palm for the time being. He looks around but isn't sure what to take from all this. His knowledge of the equipment and other things is less than rudimentary. He turns his shaded gaze towards Aryn as she grabs his attention with her explination. "Well then let's get going then." He moves further into the building/bunker/what have you.
"They're gone," Finn announces, as though that weren't obvious, "Ten or so of them. They got out of here but ... where?" His E-11 is gripped in one hand as he moves some of the discarded things left lying on the ground, examining them closely and peering about the room with a furrowed brow.
"They can't have just vanished into thin air like that."
Merek looks about the place, while he seems to think about it. He nods, "Alright, we'll be fighting a few super soldiers probably, that's what this place makes me think about," he mentions, then he's maneuvering about to the front while he waits for all the team, lifting the blaster while he begins to sweep a little.
Yuun follows the group as they move down the corridor, but as they move into the morgue, he was about to walk back out but he watches the others and as he begins to sense the area, "I feel life around here, not us but in the drawers." he says as he looks over to Aryn as she is a medical experts. "I don't know if this is what I felt earlier or not, but they are here." eh says moving towards the drawer.
"Looks like we missed someone all right, Ek," Nova says softly. "And not by much." She moves to take a look at the only door, laying a hand on the controls. "Cold. If they got out, they didn't do it this way." She toggles it open, finding a closet behind it. "And no wonder!"
She doesn't give up searching, though, moving around the perimeter of the room and into the other recesses of the laboratories. And then something hits her. "Wait... this lab looks like it was never used. The equipment's not even turned on, just the lights. Finn, did you check here?" She moves to take a look at the computer. "Hmm... the power switch doesn't work. But the indicator says it should be live. Something's not right!"
She frowns and leans on the console, looking it over. "This isn't even a real keyboard!" she says, frustrated, and smacks it with her fist. There's a sudden hum and clacking sound, like a maglock disengaging, and the face of the computer bank suddenly folds out and drops down! Naturally, it catches her stretched webbing and snaps it before she can step back. Down go her greaves again! Standing in her athletic briefs, she stares in startled surprise at the opening behind it, which looks like a gravsled track. "Yikes... clever! Guys, I've exposed the way out!"
In the end, those who worked here have left, by virtue of whatever strange and convoluted escape route they'd installed here. Future sensor scanning will demonstrate that an escape vehicle was literally launched from the top of the rock via a set of trail-driven capsules, in close quarters indeed; they'll be found scattered across the waste not too far from the scene of the crime, where a ship appears to have been hidden in a cave some few miles away. Whatever horrible science was being conducted here, that will require some work to unravel.
But they came to liberate slaves, and slaves they have found: of the twenty cylinders in the bank, twelve of them contain living beings, slaves later identified as those taken by the pirate speeder - each of them in a deep and medically-induced coma that will similarly require some work to get them out of. Thankfully the cylinders have their own batteries, and can be taken back to Rori and the medical center to be further examined when (and if) Aryn believes it safe to do so.
The other cylinders, however, contain not bodies but the remains of them - each are packed with many smaller cylinders, each one containing harvested parts. Spinal columns, sections of brain or other organs, whole skeins of neutral tissue sealed in lacquered platters for later investigation. The remnants of the last few slaves can be pieced together with what has been stored here. But why? For what purpose? Callax isn't happy, but at least the majority of the people have been saved...and very much at the sufferance of those whom he has come to call his friends. It's a grisly affair, a grave-shift yet needed to be unraveled - but here, at least, the first thread has been uncovered to be pulled.