FORGED BY FATE
Escape From Mos Shuuta – Part 3: A Traveler Finds a Crew
TRIGGERED OBLIGATION: None (34)
DESTINY POOL: Light 2 / Dark 4
The deepness of space. The camera pans down to a rusty brown planet lit from two sides by the system’s suns. This is the planet Tatooine, an isolated desert planet in the Outer Rim. From a pinpoint, a YT-1300 Freighter grows larger in center frame as it climbs from the planet’s surface…its glowing blue-white thrusters form a halo around its tiny silhouette. Accelerating, It fills the frame as it breaks atmosphere and enters orbit. The camera quickly pans to follow the ship as it screams by.
The camera zooms out until the freighter is barely visible. A lens flare arcs across the scene as the larger of the two suns slides into the edge of the frame. Suddenly a Victory class Imperial Star Destroyer drops out of hyperspace, and begins a ponderous turn, unleashing a squadron of four TIE Fighters from its belly.
CUT TO: Black
|Just another nerf in the herd|
As Jel came to, he probed his forehead for damage. Feeling only a dull throbbing pain and then realizing with a start! No manacles! His red eyes shot open as he gathered his wits. He was on the escape pod hurtling towards a planet. This planet had two suns. It must be Tatooine. Teemo the Hutt has been after him to do some “technical consulting” for a while now. As the pod rotated skyward a new threat loomed.
An Imperial Star Destroyer shining white in the light of two suns. Four TIE fighters were headed his way.
Turning his attention to the console he saw there was a single other ship close enough to hail. Pulling up the communications displays showed an encrypted homing beacon set to override all other functions. Cute, but no match for a professional slicer. Jel’s slender fingers flew across the holopad and had full control of the pod in no time. Oh and look at that, Lucy left her bug-out bag behind according to the pod’s manifest. Good ‘ol Lucy.
Hailing the nearby vessel established a link immediately. They must have been trying to raise him as well! “Hello! Jel Mud’s pilot to door service!” he cracked.
“SHszzz zz JUST ShoOT IT?”
“NO! Don’t shoot! I’m good with ships and those TIE fighters are coming right OUR way! You aren’t moving but I can help us get out of here!”
Without reply the old freighter maneuvered to dock. Whatever ham-fisted layman was at the sticks nearly fracked the first shot, but Jel’s practiced hands corrected trajectories and the docking clamps snapped tight. As the airlocks hissed open the freighter’s pilot crackled across the still open channel.
Nobody was at the airlock to greet Jel so he headed straight to the cockpit. He met a Zabrak on the way.
“Where do you need me?” Jel asked.
“The wisest star inquires not about the droid.” his new companion replied sagely.
“Oooooook, the bridge it is.”
Entering the cockpit, Jel could see a Devaronian at the co-pilots controls and a glossy-black Astromech droid was jacked into the control ports. Jel knelt to the droid.
“I am a lucky pilot and good with computers, where do you need me?”
“ENGINeerING. Get tHE HYPErspACE MatTER INDuCTOR ONLINE”
A glance out of the cockpit showed the TIE fighters closing fast. No time to lose. Engineering was to the rear. No sign of the Zabrak on the return trip.
A Mirialan was the only crew in engineering. She was holding the HMI gingerly. Just holding it. Not installing it. “Look, here, put it here” he gestured. No reaction. Taking it from her slowly he brought the HMI online and closed the casings. As it spooled up all hell broke loose.
Lights dimmed and the ship lurched forward, turbolaser turrets began firing, and the old freighter began taking Imperial fire all at once. The first salvo raked the rear of the freighter. Jel leapt to damage control. From the shouts and exclamations of the crew it sounded like they were getting the better part of the exchange. They were not.
As the second Imperial salvo impacted Jel could feel it through the bulkhead. Suddenly craving a spacesuit to preserve his oxygen intake, Jel turned to the door. A massive secondary explosion erupted, opening a hull breach in the hallway in front of him. Blast doors slammed shut and emergency life support klaxons flashed, sealing the engineering compartment. Turning back on the room in a panic a single terminal drew his eye. Overriding the damage control system Jel took manual control.
Close the port side solar panels to seal off the secondary breach. The hull breach sealed! Reroute life control to re-pressurize the main cabins. Why are the refresher evacuation controls full screen? Get them out of here! Enable dorsal atmosphere collectors to… another impact rocks engineering from… directly above? Never mind, whatever that blast was took the collectors with it.
Slaving his datapad to the co-pilots controls Jel brought up a sensor display of the three TIE fighters as they close in again and notices hailing frequency icons on all three! Worming into their communication systems was surprisingly easy. Once he was inside it was child’s play to disrupt their targeting and flight controls. As their transponders winked out any joy was short lived. More signals popped on screen from the Star Destroyers launch bays.
A navigation program was launched by the freighter’s pilot and began plotting hyperspace coordinates for somewhere in Imperial space. As soon as the window was closed on the pilot’s interface Jel dove in and nudged the coordinates a bit. A little bit out, a little bit down, and a tiny bit towards the most remote spaceport he had even been too.
Pulling up a view screen of the aft of the freighter he watched the next flight of TIE fighters approach and prayed to the stars that the HMI would spool up in time.
The TIE fighters froze on the view screen, then quickly faded aft. They were replaced by rays of starlight all around. Jel could see the momentum this time just as well as he could feel it.