Monday, January 18, 2016

Star Wars Shards of the Empire Season 01 Episode 01 Friends in Lok Places

Four X-Wing starfighters dropped out of hyperspace in the Naboo system.  "Captain Kyn said that we should meet up with Nym's contact Kole on Rori.  Keep an eye out for trouble" Jenny Kule said as she opened the s-foils on her craft.  "I doubt those 'Storm Lords' would dare try anything in this system. I hear most of the renegade Imps are operating in the Outer Rim." said Darin-Une with some doubt in her voice.  "Who's gonna stop em?  The New Republic ain't got their poodoo together yet and the Imps pulled out of this system after Jakku.  Anyway it's weird still fighting Imps, still flying X-Wings, even though the war is suppose to be over." replied Dack Cuthus a former Alliance pilot from Mynock squadron.  "Well we aren't in the Alliance anymore.  Still can't figure out this 'Sand Panther' squadron set up.  Rogan Dexter seems to have an awful lot of funds and good equipment for a Corellian smuggler.  I'm not sure if I trust him yet but I need the creds.  Besides the New Republic had me flying transports after Jakku and I much prefer the T-65." Sune' Arkel sighed as she ran through a system check of her craft.  "Tell me about it!" Dack said "We've got a contract from the Royal House of Naboo to run escort mission for a band of Pirates from Lok?  The galaxy is upside down.".

Outside of Narmel the members of Sand Panther Squadron meet Kole from the Lok Revenants at a small outpost that was once operated by the Rebel Alliance.  "Hello there!  My name is Kole" the small Chadra-Fan said.  "You must be Rogan Dexter's crew.".  "That's us.  Sand Panther Squadron." Dack replied.

"We're trying to get underway here but I've got a problem.  I was expecting a shipment of thermal detonators but I just found out that the transport they were on had to make an emergency landing a few kilometers from here.  I'm short handed so I was hoping you folks could go pick it up." Kole gestured over towards a large flat bed hover skiff.  "Sure thing! just tell us where to go" replied Jenny.  "I've got the coordinates on this datapad.  Leeta is the pilot.  I've been having some trouble reaching her on her comm but that's no surprise.  She's a good smuggler but her ship is not usually in the best of shape." Kole answered.

 "Should be straight up ahead.  I still can't reach this Leeta." Dack said as he slowed the hover skiff.  "Storm troopers what the?" yelled Darin.  A small yellow craft sat against a hill.  It looked like it had crash landed but was not badly damaged.  A squad of Imperial storm troopers in dirty white armor were standing around the craft.  Among them an officer in a disheveled uniform.

 The troopers raised their blaster carbines and started shooting.  Jenny and Sune' jumped from the back of the skiff and moved closer to the yellow craft as they fired at the troopers dropping two of them.  Dack and Darin hopped out of the cab and shot the others.  The officer ducked around the back of the craft but as soon as the four pilots came around the corner he dropped his pistol and put his hands in the air.  A badly beaten woman lay on the ground behind the small shuttle.  Jenny pointed at the woman "Can anyone help her?".  "Yeah I've got medical training." replied Darin as she knelt next to the woman and pulled a small med pack out of her bag.

"What the Hell are Imps doing here?" Dack asked the officer while brandishing his pistol at him.  "Well I'm not sure you could call us Imperials anymore but we were here looking for a bunch of Pirates from Lok.  The Storm Lords heard that they were trying to gather supplies here on Rori." the officer replied as he rubbed the stubble on his chin.  "You're one of these Storm Lords then?" Sune' ask.  The officer rolled his eyes "Yes obviously and I suppose you are with the pirates?".  "How did you come to be a part of the Storm Lords?" asked Jenny.  "Well I was stationed on Lok at an Imperial base there.  After Jakku our transports never returned to pick us up and all we had as far as space craft were a few TIE fighters.  Nym's Lok Revenants were trying to wipe us out.  Then Storm Squadron showed up and helped us beat the pirates back.  We started gathering other former Imperials from the nearby sectors and we re-formed as The Storm Lords." the officer replied.  "Why not turn yourselves in?  The New Republic has gone pretty easy on former Imperials troops." ask Jenny.  "Well we had ships and arms and nothing better to do.  I guess you could say we saw an opportunity in that." the officer chuckled.  "So your pirates too then eh?" said Dack.  "Indeed." answered the officer.  "Tie him up.  We'll see if Kole wants to take him back to Lok." Jenny said.  "With pleasure." Dack replied doing a mocking salute.

  "Who are you people?" the young woman sat up and looked around.  "Kole sent us.  You must be Leeta." replied Jenny.  The Woman nodded.  "Alright I've got the goods in my ship but I had to set down out here.  Somethings wrong with my ship.  I was trying to figure it out when these guys attacked me.  Can any of you help me fix it.  I'm not much of a mechanic?" Leeta said.  "Sure I'll check it out." replied Sune'.  "You can tell Kole he can take ten percent off my fee since I didn't quite deliver the shipment."  Leeta rubbed a goose egg on her forehead.  "Ship should fly now.  You're fuel filter was clogged." Dack laughed.  "You know you really should get this thing serviced so it doesn't get you killed next time." Sune's scolded.  "You sound like my father." replied Leeta.  "Must be a smart man." Sune's said folding her arms across her chest.  "Okay I'll have it checked out at Narmel.  Take care."  Leeta waved and climbed back into her ship.

The Revenants and the Sand Panthers finished loading their cargo then took off from Rori.  "Head for the nearest hyperspace beacon.  We need to get out of this system as soon as possible." Kole said over the comms.  "Too late boss we've got incoming!" one of the freighter captains replies.  "Two TIE advanced and a Firespray! coming in hot!" Sune' said.  "They must not have been expecting the escort.  Lock S-foils Sand Panthers!" Jenny commanded.

 The Imperial fighters made an aggressive assault on the convoy.  The Firespray fired on Kole's YT-1300 missing.  The lead TIE advanced hit Jenny Kune's X-wing. "It's okay.  Shields are damaged but nothing serious." Jenny said.

 Three of the pirate freighters opened up on the Firespray and the heavy fighter exploded in a bright flash. "Got him!" shouted Kole.

 Jenny Kule and Darin-Une opened fire on the TIE advanced that had shot Kule's ship taking it out easily.  The small ship spun erratically through space then exploded.  "Good shooting Sand Panthers!" Kole exclaimed "Looks like you were worth the creds the Queen paid for you."

"Looks like the last one is bugging out.  Should we pursue?" ask Dack.  "No let's re-group and get to that nav beacon.  These guys might have friends in the system." replied Jenny.  "Eye, eye, skipper." Darin replied.

The convoy came out of hyperspace in the Lok system.  "Alright let's make for these coordinates.  The Storm Lords can't get their corvettes into the denser parts of the Spine.  The asteroids are too thick there."  Kole sent the coordinates to the other ships in the convoy.  "This won't be easy though.  They are bound to have TIE patrols in those areas.  Be ready Sand Panthers." Jenny said.    

 As the convoy made its way through the Spine of Lok the saw several TIE fighters headed their way.  "Look sharp Sand Panthers.  We've got a half a dozen TIEs dead ahead." Jenny said as she armed her weapons.

 The TIEs made a rush for the YT-1300 scoring several hits against the freighter.  "My shields are already at half power.  These guys aren't messing around!" Kole said.  One of the TIE interceptors exploded in a fireball.  "Got him!" shouted Sune'.

 Another TIE exploded as they swarmed around the Correlian freighter but they continued to hammer Kole's ship.  "There all over me!  I don't know how much longer I can keep it together.  Shields are down and the hull is at fifty percent!" Kole exclaimed.

"Scratch two!" Sune' shouted as another Interceptor went up in a flash.  "And three!" Jenny said as another TIE exploded. Kole hit another TIE with his laser cannons and the small craft broke apart spinning through space. Then other two TIE's swooped in pouring fire into the YT-1300.  The freighter tumbled through space then exploded.  "BOSS!" one of the pirates shouted into the comms.  "Anyone see an escape pod?  Check your visual scanners." Jenny commanded.  "Wow that was too close." came a high pitched voice over the coms.  "I don't suppose one you could pick us up.  Just barely managed to get to an escape pod."

The Sand Panthers walked into the palace at Nym's stronghold with Kole.  "We made it Nym!  Well mostly.  I lost the YT but the rest of the convoy got through.  If it wasn't for these mercs we would have been Bantha Poodoo." Kole gestured at the Sand Panther pilots.  "Welcome to Lok friends." Nym stood up and spread his arms.  "I'm grateful that you made it past the blockade.  We were in dire need of the supplies that you helped us secure.  Kole will see you to our guest accommodations.  In the morning I would like to meet with you to discuss our situation.".  "Thank you Lord Nym" Jenny said bowing "Sand Panther squadron is happy to be of service.".

Kole took the Sand Panthers to the guest rooms at Nym's palace.  They were comfortable rooms richly decorated with artworks and furniture from dozens of cultures.  "Well this beats an Alliance barracks!" said Dack.  "Make yourselves comfortable folks.  I'll see you in the morning." Kole bowed then turned and walked away.    

Notes:  Well this is the first actual episode of my "Star Wars Shards of the Empire" campaign.  I was originally going to set the first story arc on Dantooine but after doing some research I switched to Lok.  There is a large Imperial base on Lok and Storm Squadron from Tatoonine frequently conducted anti-piracy raids against the pirates in the Lok system.  It seemed a good match up for my first story arch providing a lot of opportunity for both space and ground action.   

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