Star Wars: Dark Age of the Republic

Session 8 - The Price of Freedom

There are no more appearances by the Spacers for the rest of the night, though Kitt and Don remain vigilant. A few hours into the morning Rudi emerges from the hotel to assume his shift as guard. As he makes his way to the jail a loud speeder pulls up in front of Kitt and Don, carrying Rune. He explains that he had spent some time checking the mines out on his own, presumably to locate the Administrator faster, but instead found that a good deal of explosives had been stolen. There’s no doubt that the Spacers are behind the theft, and are planning something very unpleasant for the group. Biggs walks up to the group, mentioning Kitt as the temporary replacement for Kol as he had fallen ill from the rain soaked fight the night before. She confirms this, and explains the jail break, and that it’ll all be taken care of. Biggs says the Spacers are quite up in arms over the ordeal.

And on cue, a group of Spacers, led by Cyril Broxus and Vor’en Tikaris, come up to the jail, furious about the loss of some of their own the night before. Vor’en in particular is incensed, only barely being held back by Cyril as he threatens Kitt. He demands her soul and her blood, a statement that Kitt only responds with that she is, “particularly attached to them.” The Spacers accuse the party of murdering their own, while Kitt, Rudi and Don stand firm that it was a jailbreak and those Spacers died attempting to murder the law in Gravepool. Biggs manages to get the Spacers to leave for the moment, using his standard statement of “law and order.”

The party agrees that they need to find out where the Spacers are planning to hit with the stolen explosives. But after staying up through the whole night both Kitt and Don are exhausted and need to rest. Kitt asks Rune and Rudi to take a shift guarding, though it leaves no one available to investigate the explosives.

After grabbing some breakfast at the cantina, Kitt and Don run into Baniss in the hotel. He is worried about all the violence that has been going on in the streets, and doesn’t want to be involved in any of it. Don suggests that Baniss stay in the hotel and have his meals brought to him there. Kitt supports the idea, stating that at the moment, the hotel is one of the safest places and they don’t want Baniss to get hurt. He agrees to the plan, saying if they believe it is the best way for him to avoid violence, he is all for it.

During Rune and Rudi’s shift the Spacers return, this time in a funeral march procession. The move past the jail slowly, the rain adding to the somber nature of the event. This time the Spacers pay no attention to the jail or the ‘deputies’ and continue out of town to the gravepools.

Hours pass, Don and Kitt sleeping, Rune and Rudi guarding. Towards the time for the next shift change the prisoners begin to complain about their hunger, all demanding to eat. There is a short discussion between Rune and Rudi whether to feed them at all. Rune agrees to get them all something plain to eat, and goes to the cantina to get it.

Rune has a little trouble procuring the food, though, being unable to speak Bocce or Sullustan and Miim the bartender being unable to speak Basic. His predicament is noticed by Kitt, who just sat down for breakfast with Don. She acts as the go between, getting some fish and chips for the prisoners and handing them off to Rune to deliver.

The prisoners seem grateful to receive their bar food, though Rudi considers it a little too rich for the likes of them. Having finished their meal, Kitt and Don emerge from the cantina and go to relieve the others at guard duty. Don hands Rune a sandwich he had bought in the cantina and asks him to deliver it to Baniss. Rudi heads off to the cantina.

Baniss is happy to get his sandwich when Rune arrives with it, though is still worried about the situation. Having done that, Rune decides where to start with the investigation and that is following the Spacers out to the gravepools. He has to ask around at the cantina for directions, but Rune eventually finds his way to the cave of the gravepools. It is dark and Rune soon finds the place to be empty. No tracks, no trail to follow, he has little choice but to head back to town.

Biggs finds Rudi, still in the cantina. The two strikes up a conversation, and after a few moments Rudi is invited to drink back at Biggs’s office. Seeing this as a good opportunity, Rudi doesn’t hesitate to accept the invitation.

When Rune arrives back in town he reports to Kitt that he hadn’t found anything that would help them. They continue to discuss where to go from there as Biggs and Rudi head over to his office. When Kitt notices and asks where they’re going, Rune dismisses it as irrelevant to the task at hand. She’s too late to head them off, though, and Rudi and Biggs go into his office. Inside they share a fine bottle of brandy, enjoying a pleasant conversation. However, it never turns to the situation in Gravepool, or the Spacers. When the brandy runs dry, Rudi takes his leave, deciding to head back to the cantina to gather information.

Kitt spots Rudi leaving and follows after him, leaving Don and Rune to guard the prisoners. When she catches up with him she asks if he found out anything important while boozing it up with Biggs, but all Rudi replies with is, “He has good brandy.” Though a little tipsy, Rudi makes the rounds at the cantina, managing to get a bead on the Spacer’s place. One patron is able to show him where the general location is on a datapad, but Kitt is the one that notices that the signals on their datapads are off, signaling that the Spacers aren’t at their jobs.

At that moment Faina rushes into the cantina, telling Kitt that she needs to see her in private. She and Rudi move to the back of the cantina, a more private place, and Faina starts explaining the issue at hand. She has found out that the Spacers are planning an attack on the party that very night, that it will be big and they have little time to waste. Kitt and Rudi intend to set off to the Spacer’s place to stop this attack before it starts but the booming sound of an explosion coming from outside halts all talk. Their time is up.

Standing guard, Rune and Don have a better vantage point to see where the explosion is coming from. Don declares with horror that it came from the hotel, where Baniss, Kol and Merryl are. This sets Rune off in a run towards the inferno.

Rudi and Kitt race out of the cantina and out into the pouring rain, just able to see glow from where the fire is. They both start in that direction but are cut off by the roaring sound of two speeder bikes driving towards them. A painful collision misses them by mere seconds as two Spacers zoom by. They take aim and shoot, but are unable to hit their targets. Rudi fights back with his command of telekinesis, throwing one speeder into another and causing quite a bit of damage. Both Kitt and Don take shots at the drivers, each hitting their mark, though it is not enough to stop the Spacers from driving away.

Faced with the intense flames, Rune is not deterred. He runs into the burning and collapsing building, using his all temperature cloak to help protect him. Using his connection to the Force, Rune stretches his feelings, trying to find the three missing party members but is unable to feel anything. This does not stop him from venturing farther into the fiery building, calling out to everyone. Rune hears no answer, but soon is able to find a burned and charred body. Not hesitating, Rune lifts the body over his shoulder and turns to leave. The smoke is surrounding him, making everything more difficult.

Rudi and Kitt rush towards the hotel, Rudi being the first to get there. He sees Rune emerging from the fire and hastens the dangerous trek by pulling him forward with the Force. Rune says he couldn’t find the others, couldn’t even feel them in the building, but was able to find the charred person. He runs back in to make another check for the others, but is unable to find anything, and the fire all around him burns intensely. When he emerges, they carry the charred body to Don, who was still guarding the jail to identify the body.

To their relief, Kol and Merryl arrive at that moment, coming from outside town, stunned looks on their faces. They can’t believe that the hotel is burning down, and worse news comes when Kol explains that their shuttle has been damaged. It seems that the Spacers went to town on it to make sure the party couldn’t take off until the situation had been taken care of. After an intense few moments, Don recoils in horror, pointing to the body.

“It…it’s Baniss,” he says. “He’s dead.”

A moment of silence falls as shock sets in. No one knows what to say, but the weight of it bears down on them. Don is the first to speak, lamenting that it is his entire fault. Baniss wanted nothing more than peace, and now he is dead. Grief soon gives way to anger as Don declares that the Spacers must pay, there must be revenge. He rants and raves, running off in the direction of their lair. Kitt pursues and quickly catches him. A distraught Don does not want to be held back, that it is what Baniss would want. Kitt tells him that going off alone will only get him killed, but Don doesn’t care; his revenge is worth his life. It is fair after what happened to Baniss. Kitt continues to talk him down, trying to tell him that Baniss’s death is her responsibility. She was the marshal and was unable to stop the Spacers from going through with their plans. But if Don wants justice, and wants to stop the Spacers, he’ll need to stay calm and stay with them. Though Kitt continues to talk about killing in revenge not being the answer, Don only agrees to come back when she assures him that something will be done. They head back to the jail where Rudi and Rune still are.

The only thing the group can agree on is that the Spacers must be dealt with. Don rants about revenge, wanting nothing more than to wipe every single yellow slicker wearing person/alien he sees. Rudi and Rune mention vengeance, though it seems a bit odd. Rudi adds onto the idea of taking the fight to the Spacer’s lair, suggesting they just bring down the entire building on them with the Force. This doesn’t go over well with Kitt, it not being a fair fight in the least, and goes on to stand by her conviction that she wants justice, not vengeance or revenge. It incites an argument between her and Rudi, who calls her on her conviction being impractical given Gravepool’s resources. Swept up in his need for revenge, Don states he is going to the Spacer’s lair, and it is a good enough plan for the others.

When the subject of guarding the prisoners comes up, Don suggests getting Biggs to do it. He says it would be no problem for him, but Rudi only grabs him by the collar and suggests throwing him in with the other prisoners, considering how corrupted he is. Rune doesn’t seem really on board with this idea, and it comes down to Kitt still as acting marshal. This time she agrees with Rudi and Biggs is thrown in with the others. Still in need of guards, Kol and Merryl offer to take the shift. Don yells that they will be given transportation to deal with the Spacers, and the Administrator offers up his speeder. They race off to the Spacer’s lair, with Kitt in the driver’s seat.

It takes a few hours to get there, but the group eventually pulls up to the Spacer’s base. It is a somewhat run down building, with holes where there should be walls and debris all around. Don jumps out and immediately takes the lead, followed closely by Kitt, Rune and Rudi. Spotting one of the holes in the walls, Don leads them into the building, over cracked and broken pieces of rubble. Doors around them are closed, and there appears to be no one in the immediate area, but Don does spot another room that is broken open. They all head through that and come out into a hallway. They continue with caution, soon finding their way into a very large storeroom, with crates and boxes everywhere. A moment after stepping into the room Kitt notices a few Spacers, and unfortunately they spotted the party as well. Looks like they walked into an ambush.

An intense battle follows, blaster bolts flying between the two groups. Rune ignites his lightsaber and makes his way to the nearest man, ready to do combat. Don makes off a few shots before heading to some cover, as does Kitt. Rudi decides to head around the other way, and makes for the hallway. The battle rages on and soon a few of the Spacers fall. Rune and Rudi spot Cyril Broxus, and the three engage in a tough fight. Rune strikes with his lightsaber while Rudi relies on his telekinetic abilities. They wear Cyril down, eventually knocking him to the ground. Cyril laughs at his defeat, showing to them his last strike: a grenade. The two jump away just in time as the grenade explodes, taking Cyril Broxus with it.

The fight isn’t over yet, though, as Don and Kitt are still shooting it out with the Spacers. One powerful blaster bolt wears down Don to his breaking point, and he falls unconscious, only to be awoken a few seconds later by Rudi’s abilities. The tables are soon turned on Rudi, though, as the gang fight the last man. He is a powerful blasterslinger, and with a few well placed shots Rudi is out for the count. The rest of the party is able to finish off the last man standing, and then Don is able to wake Rudi with deft use of a medpac.

All the Spacers in the building, including the leader, dead, the group piles into the speeder and head back into town. Kitt goes to see the Administrator, briefing him on the situation at hand. He gives her his condolences for Baniss’s death, and is glad that they have stopped Cyril. Their job is not yet over, though, as Vor’en is still out there and the rest of the Spacer gang will gladly follow him. Until Vor’en is taken care of there is no leaving Gravepool. The Administrator does offer them all use of his house for the night, knowing they have no where to sleep now and tells her that Faina will show her in. He recommends that Kitt get some sleep, noting how tired she looks. She agrees and heads over there.

Faina shows Kitt, Rune and Don into the Administrator’s place, Rudi having gone off to the cantina alone, and tells them that they brought Baniss there for them. They thank Faina and turn in for the night.

Morning arrives, and as the party joins together a speeder bike zooms to a halt in front of town hall. They all run to see what is going on and are shocked to see Urias Saper sprawled out across the bike, a datapad attached. It is a message from Vor’en, telling them he will fight their strongest member one on one. If they win, the Spacers will stop. Although there is some debate whether Vor’en will follow his word, causing Kitt to suggest a stealthy approach to snipe if he shows some signs of cheating, in the end the group agrees to follow through with the challenge. There is some discussion about who is the best candidate, but it is soon decided that Rune will stand the best chance against Vor’en. And although the message states for them to come alone, the entire party joins Rune to the location, not willing to send him out to his death alone.

It appears that the fight is to take place in a cave. The entrance is guarded by two of the Spacers, who only allow Rune past them when he declares himself to be the challenger. Though they don’t like it, Kitt, Rudi and Don stay at the entrance and watch Rune disappear into the inner tunnels of the cave.

Vor’en stands at the other end of a large part of the cave. He scoffs at who they have chosen as their best fighter, but Rune only responds by closing the distance between them. With a press of a button Rune’s lightsaber hums to life, and with one swift movement Vor’en’s blaster is at the ready. Both make their first hits, and both of them are hard ones. They trade blows, blaster and lightsaber, back and forth. Rune calls upon his Force abilities to aid him in striking true while Vor’en at one point disarms the Jedi with his precision shots. They wear each other down, and eventually the fight comes to a dramatic end. Just as Vor’en is about to land the killing shot on Rune, the Jedi lets loose with a fearsome strike and it strikes true. Vor’en’s head flies away, his body slumping to the ground, lifeless. And though very injured and drained, Rune is the victor.

The guards are stunned when Rune emerges from the tunnels, holding Vor’en’s head as proof of his deed. They step away immediately, and then turn to run off. At last, the threat of the Spacer gang is no more.

When the group returns to town they see that Biggs and the other Spacers are still locked away in jail. Rudi makes the suggestion that they be executed, to prevent causing any more murder and grief in Gravepool, though Rune points out that Jedi never execute prisoners. The idea is immediately turned down. The Administrator and Faina come out to hear what happened and are relieved to know that the Spacers are disbanded. The Administrator is grateful for everything the group has done for Gravepool, and assures them that their deals will be honored. They will always have a place in Gravepool, and the suggestion of a statue comes up. Rudi warms up to this idea, but Don is the one who is most vocal, saying he wants nothing more than a statue of Baniss. A great statue, and a peaceful place to sit around it, to show just what it cost for the town to be free. “White wine and shrimp to be served to all who want it!” he demands.

Kol and Merryl appear once again, telling Kitt that they did some repairs on the shuttle so they can leave. Kitt questions their mechanical aptitude and does some checking on it herself. As she suspected, the two aren’t made to be technicians and a great deal of it is in need of repair. She does her best to patch the shuttle up, and is able to jury-rig it enough to get them back to the Crusader.

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