Conflict In The Clouds: The time it turned out Princess Leia was a Sith…
Port Town (Level 134) <Cloud City: Bespin>
In stark contrast to Cloud City’s pristine appearance on the upper levels, the lower areas known as Port Town are dimly lit due to vandalized lighting fixtures, dirty because of malfunctioning (and stolen) maintenance bots, and generally much more downtrodden than the rest of the city. The population density also appears much higher, as it is on every other corner or bend in the criss-crossing broadways, each of which is wide and tall enough to fit the large cargo sleds and trucks, that there are people talking in some dark alley, trading harsh words in low voices.
The Wing Guard security forces, too, are in sparse supply down here, being seen only occasionally. And that lack has given rise to plenty of unlicensed, unregulated businesses that range from seedy bars and casinos to illicit weapon merchants that smuggle their goods in through Port Town’s many industrial loading docks.
From out of the darkened side alley rolls something round, gray and a little heavy, with a crooked protuberance extending from beneath a pair of dusty goggles: The head of a Kubaz, it rolls to a stop at Roga’s feet. The head appears to have been cleanly severed at the neck, the wound somehow cauterized.
Obi-Wan Kenobi enters the dimly lit area, stopping to look around. “Ah, much better.” he exclaims quietly, heading for the entrance to a tavern.
Roga’s eyes nearly bulge out of his head as he stares down at the head, backing up a few steps. “Whoa.. Uh.. Sir.” He looks at Ben “Hang on a second. We have a problem” Stepping forward a few steps he kneels, looking at the head more closely.
Obi-Wan Kenobi turns his head, arching a silvery eyebrow. “Problem, what kind of problem?” he asks Roga.
Leia steps out of the side alley, drawing a cylinder from her hip and presses a button, causing a crimson light blade to *fzzzzt!* outward from the hilt. She grips it in both hands and smiles tightly as she looks at Obi-Wan. “General Kenobi.”
Roga wets his lips, standing and staring at Leia. The head is quickly forgotten as he looks at the crimson blade. “Uh.. Boss.. We might have an even bigger problem now” he mutters, earning his title as king of the obvious. A long-fingered hand reaches for his hip, before he realizes that he is unarmed.
“Run.” Obi-Wan tells Roga with an even voice. “Leia.” he says, stopping for a moment to take in the picture, “What is the meaning of this?” he asks, sounding genuinly surprised, but doesn’t move for his own weapon.
“The Emperor seems quite interested in seeing you again, General,” Leia replies, mouth arching slightly upward, her face cast in the crimson glow of the light saber blade. She jerks her head toward Roga. “He couldn’t care less for that nerfherder. But you and the old master…he wants you. So, you either come willingly, or you never leave Cloud City again. It’s quite simple.”
Leia is near a dark side alley not far from Death Becomes Her, a crimson lightsaber in hand, facing Obi-Wan and Roga. There’s a severed Kubaz head at Roga’s feet.
“Boss.. You should know I can’t do that.” Roga replies with a grin, eyes twinkling a moment. His gaze remains steadily on Leia and he remains behind Obi-Wan and to the left. Slowly exhaling the young man forces his body to relax, the tension easing away from him as he commands his body to be calm. “Donno who this lady is but.. Mebbe we should get going. I ain’t leavin’ ya though”
Dronosk walks into port town, his bloodshot eyes sweeping the area. The glow of the lightsaber attracts the T’doshok’s attention.
Deke saunters into port town and continues on toward his destination: Death Becomes Her. The gambler’s yet to notice the Jedi, mind focused on the ale taps awaiting his dry throat.
“I didn’t think, that he would send you.” Obi-Wan says, his eyes narrowing, taking a slow step backwards. “And we have other options, it is not yet too late for you, Leia.” still, he makes no motion to remove his own weapon. “I suggest you do as I say, my young friend. This is not your battle.” he speaks to Roga, without lifting his gaze from Leia.
“The old man is right,” Leia observes acidly, drawing her left hand away from the lightsaber pommel and aiming the palm at Roga. “It’s not your fight at all.” And then she makes a shoving motion, outward, in Roga’s direction.
Leia is near a dark side alley not far from Death Becomes Her, a crimson lightsaber in hand, facing Obi-Wan and Roga. There’s a severed Kubaz head at Roga’s feet.
Roga wets his lips uneasily, clenching and unclenching his fists a few times. “Boss.. I’ll risk death. But you and the other.. person” he hesitates, not very eager to name the other. “You have earned my loyalty. I don’t cut and run at the first sign of trouble. This is my fight now” A look of surprise imposes itself on his features as he flys into the air, hurled back a good ways and landing with a thud.
Saevion steps in, following everyone else and is startled by the man flying through the air. He mutters to himself, “Well that doesn’t bode well for anything…”
If the verbal threats and saber brandishing didn’t draw Deke’s attention, the ex-Imperial pilot soaring through the air most certainly does. Deke instinctively reaches toward the empty holster at his hip. “Of all the nerfherdin’ times…” he mutters as he finds the holster empty.
“You cannot win Leia, you of all people must know this.” Obi-Wan says, now reaching for his own light saber. “Let me help you, bring you out of the dark side.” he brings his lightsaber to bear, clasping it in both hands. “You are our only hope.” he says, a wave of sadness crosses the old man’s face.
Obi-Wan Kenobi wields his Kenobi’s Lightsaber
Poe walks out into the port town, his green hood still pulled up over his head. He glances around the port town, seemingly looking for someone. He makes his way towards Death Becomes Her, minding his own business. As the man flies through the air though, landing not to far from him, he glances up. He looks over at Jedi that drew his lightsaber, but makes his way instead to Roga, kneeling down next to him. “You okay?”
“Hope?” the young Sith apprentice says, smirking. “What do *you* know about hope, old man? Hiding on that backwater desert world, squandering your gifts when the galaxy needed you most! Emperor Palpatine is a strong leader. A righteous leader. He has taken care of my father and me. Where have *you* been?” She scowls, then clutches the lightsaber in both hands once more. “I *can* win. The Emperor has taught me well. My *father* has taught me well.”
Saevion locks his gaze on the main participants, aided easily by the lightsabers. He gives a slight shake of his head at the fact that this would happen on a planet where all weapons would be confiscated. He listens carefully to the conversation, with little else to do. He glances at Deke for a second and has only his commlink and PDA handy. He clicks on the PDA and waits.
Roga tumbles and rolls across the ground, wheezing as the air forces itself out of his lungs. With a distracted wave torwards Poe he lays on the ground for a few moments, regaining his composure. Seconds pass before he rolls onto his stomach, forcing himself to his knees. He looks at Leia, a frown on his face. “Listen to him.. uh.. Leia.. is it?” he manages, calling torwards the woman. Taking a breath he continues “I don’t know what it’s like, being like you two.. But the Emperor is wrong.. He’s evil, damnit! You don’t want to be like him” With his energy exhausted he lapses into silence.
Obi-Wan Kenobi sighs and closes his eyes for a very brief moment, “Hiding was necesary, to protect your brother, Leia. We could not risk either one of, falling into the hands of your father and senator Palpatine.” using the Emperor’s old, and probably forgotten title, “And you will not win, I will not allow it.” he says, peering into the young female’s eyes.
Deke thinks better of trying to cross the Jedi just to reach the tavern. And so instead, he moves toward the nearest tough looking creature, Dronosk. “No hard feelin’s about the other day, huh big guy?” He doesn’t seem at all concerned with Roga.
Deke’s PDA chirrps as it receives a new message.
Poe continues to kneel next to Roga, watching him a moment before standing back up. He turns towards Leia and Obi-Wan now, somewhat interested in this conversation. He steps back away from Roga however, finding a spot not so in the open to watch from.
Malflax steps off the transit looking around, when the ensueing action catches his eye. Quickly he takes cover behind a cargo sled quietly peering out from behind.
Dronosk shakes his head at Deke. “None. Ruu explained it to me.” He looks towards Roga, and then the two figured wielding lightsabers, his claws flexing.
Leia stares back, her eyes cold, her face grim and set. “Protect! Yes, you did a magnificent job of protecting Luke, didn’t you, General? He’s dead now! That’s on your hands. How did you seek to protect me? Turned me over to Bail Organa, who then parlayed his possession of me into influence with the man who would be Emperor. But Emperor Palpatine shared the truth with me, *General*. He told me the truth about who I was, what I could do, what I could *become*. All you offer are *lies* and empty talk of hope.” She begins to walk toward Kenobi, saber angled to the right, the glow gleaming off her eyes. “My father says Jedi always did like talking far too much.” She swings in an arc from right to left, aiming for Kenobi’s shoulder.
Deke falls silent, his unwavering attention now focused on Leia and Kenobi as the pair exchange blows. The PDA chirping under his coat doesn’t even register to him.
Roga slams a fist into the ground, forcing himself to his feet. He watches in horror as Leia attacks Obi-Wan, an expression of terror appearing on his face. He looks around, searching futilely for anything resembling a weapon. Noting Poe he whirls on him, waving an arm “Gun.. Gun! I need a goddamn Gun.”
Obi-Wan’s lightsaber work is just a bit too slow, and the scent of burning fabric and flesh is now present in the air as Leia gives him a nice burning slice across the chest, though it is not physically debilitating.
Obi-Wan Kenobi stumbles backwards, tripping and falls on his posterior, but manages to deflect most of Leia’s blow away from his body. “So be it.” he says, throwing his light saber in a sweeping arc towards Leia’s legs.
Leia leaps vertically, attempting a rather graceful maneuver. This is, however, cut short by the whirling blade of Kenobi’s lightsaber, which hits her no fewer than two times as it performs its boomerang path. Neither cut is fatal, but she takes a long slice along the left thigh and another on her right calf.
Poe glances over at Roga and shakes his hooded head. “Weapons laws, remember?” He turns back to the fight. He frowns as the older man gets sliced, though the frown is hidden from view. He starts to back away, but then stops as he sees the Jedi’s next move.
Phoenix spots Deke after a bit as she heads into Port Town. The teen trots over to him, silent for now.
Leaping upward with Force-amplified abilities, Leia isn’t fast enough to avoid the whickering slices of energy from the hurl blade, and she lands on a catwalk overhead, dropping immediately to her knees and gasping in pain as she clings to the catwalk railing and stares down at the wounded Kenobi with venomous hatred in her eyes. “Your…powers…are *weak*, old man,” she snarls. Slowly, she begins pulling herself upright again.
Jyrwooka follows Ix, and just ahving noticed the fight, he looks at it as much as he can, while following Ix.
Malflax is still watching the ongoing battle from behind a cargo sled quietly.
“What in the…” Deke’s jaw hangs open as he watches Leia leap to impossible heights. “I think somebody slipped me some Spice,” he says to nobody in particular.
“The dark side, can never win Leia.” Obi-Wan says, catching his lightsaber in a graceful maneuver, whilst his other hand makes a sweeping motion towards the catwalk that she now stands on. “What will you do as senator Palpatine’s drone, oppress and torture?”
Phoenix peers at Leia as she jumps, just close enough to hear Deke’s words, “Uh…in that case, I think someone did the same t’ me, Deke..”
Dronosk glances to see the Phoenix and the wookie approach. He flares his nostrils in irritation at the wookie, but his attention is on the battle.
The catwalk does indeed shake, and it shakes hard, rocking from side to side, propelled by the power of the Force.
Jyrwooka either doesn’t notice Dronosk’s flaring, or doesn’t care, most of his attention now seems on the fight.
Finding no weapon Roga turns back to the combatants, walking forward slowly. “Look..” he calls up to Leia, still trying to negotiate. “You don’t have to be evil.. Master Kenobi is right. You don’t have to fight him, you don’t have to be hurt. You can join us!” His Corellian accent is strained with nervous energy as the young one attempts to do *something* useful, anything! His eyes still dart side to side, looking feebly for a weapon as he stops a few feet behind Obi-Wan.
The Sith apprentice stumbles and falls as the catwalk is shaken, but catches herself on the railing with her left arm. She keeps a grip on her saber. She thinks about the situation for only a few moments before remaining in a kneeling position, deactivating her lightsaber and assuming an attitude that seems almost prayerful as she bows her head to look down at Kenobi through the railing. She holds her fingers stretched out, aiming at Kenobi, and sparkles of blue energy begin to dance from the tips. “Emperor Palpatine has done more for me than you can ever imagine,” Leia hisses as the Force lightning crackles down toward the Jedi.
Poe watches Leia, but doesn’t seem too shocked by the jump. He looks up at Leia and says, though not really to her, “Emperor Palpatine killed my father.” He spots Ix not to far away, but doesn’t head towards her, just stays where he is.
Deke takes a cautious step back as the woman starts shooting bolts of lightening all over the place. He doesn’t seem to have heard Phoenix, in fact he doesn’t seem to be aware of anything at all but the two combatants. The prospect of fleeing for his life never even crosses his mind, this fight’s just too good.
Phoenix pokes Deke in the ribs, prepared to use one of her numerous blades if she still doesn’t get his attention, “Deke…what the h*ll’s happenin’? How come she’s shootin’ bolts of lightnin’ an’ stuff?”
The lightning crosses the space between Leia and Obi-Wan Kenobi in a heartbeat, but disappears there, a blue sphere of energy appearing where the lightning should have impacted Kenobi’s person. The lightning is absorbed here, the ball growing larger and larger until there is an explosion of energy, the lightning arcing straight up and outward, over the heads of most of the crowd.
As the lightning is deflected, Obi-Wan takes a few steps back, putting a little more distance between himself and Leia. “Done for you, what has he done to the galaxy? Have you become as selfish as your Master and your father?” he asks of her, his voice still patient. “All he has taught you, is how to bring suffering!”
Frustrated, Leia turns her attention to the man who was walking with Kenobi, at whose feet that Kubaz’s head bounced to a stop: Roga. She smiles archly and aims her hands at Roga, making a lifting motion with them. “Shall I show you something about suffering, General?”
Phoenix’s poke does little to draw Deke’s attention. He half twitches in her direction, nothing more. However, the lightning arcing over his head seems to snap him out of it. The gambler attempts to duck, turn and run all at the same time. The end result? He falls flat on his rear and curses under his breath.
Malflax pulls a holo-recorder out of his toolcase and begins recording the action while at the same time he’s pushing a button on a small disc around his waist.
Obi-Wan Kenobi sighs and shakes his head, “Is that the best you can do, take innocent bystanders as hostage?” he asks, “Search within yourself, you know it is wrong.” while speaking he tries to maneuver himself inbetween himself, and the elevated Sith. “What will you accomplish by hurting this man?”
Roga feels a great upward pull, but remains rooted on the ground, barely.
Phoenix peeers up at the lightning, seeming frozen in place. The teen says nothing asides from, “Holy sh*t…” She listens quietly, one hand brushing an empty holster at her belt.
“Listen to him.. Please. We’re not your enemies..” The young man trails off as she points a hand at him, body stiffening as his face whitens. Feeling himself tugged upwards, Roga exhales, clenching and unclenching his fists. “You can still join us.. Please, help yourself and free yourself of the Emperor’s chains” he implores Leia, brow furrowing as he looks up at her.
Angered, frustrated, the Sith apprentice scowls. If Roga won’t rise, she will do her best to see him fall. She turns her left hand sideways and then makes a choking motion as she stares at the man. But she answers Kenobi just the same: “What will I accomplish? If it hurts you, General, I’d say it accomplishes everything the Emperor requires.” She begins to squeeze the air between her fingers, glowering at Roga.
Deke scrambles back to his feet and mutters, “This is a bit much for me.” He backpedals in the direction parked speeder not far off, unable to tear his eyes away from the madness. Upon reaching the vehicle he positions it between himself and the battle, still peering around so as not to miss anything.
Tentacles of Force energy leap between Leia and Roga, slowly restricting the air around the latter’s windpipe. This accelerates, and the man is slowly choked, air no longer allowed down his throat.
“Enough of this!” Obi-Wan calls out. “You are acting like a spoiled child, it is time you learn the ramifications of your actions.” he adds, sweeping his free hand out at Leia. “Release him, at once!”
Poe frowns and steps forward now. “Hey!” he yells to the Sith. “If you’re going to kill someone, might as well be me. The Emperor killed my father, then ruined my life as well. Let that guy go.”
Phoenix frowns as Leia starts to choke Roga, calling, “‘Ey, cut that out. He hasn’t done anythin’ t’ you! Even /I/ don’t kill people just t’ make a point – us streetrats have /morals/, y’know.” And it’s all true – she just cuts people’s gonads off and they do have morals. Just very low ones.
The blast of energy is not enough to hurl Leia off of the cat walk, but is in fact enough to knock her down, onto her buttocks and then flat onto her back, where she loses line of sight of Roga. The force push slams into her chest, causing significant trauma, the dull ‘pop’ of several ribs breaking clearly audible.
“I…am getting…” the Sith apprentice growls as she rolls onto her side, wincing, keeping her clenched hand aimed at Roga, “very tired of you, *old man*!” She smirks, watching Roga suffer. “Is this him?” she wonders aloud. “Is this your new *pupil* Moff Saati told us about? He seems…less than promising.” She keeps on squeezing.
Roga gasps, flailing and gasping for breath. His right hand grabs at his throat, tugging vainly at the collar. Golden eyes wide open and staring at the Sith, he continues to try and get air down his closing windpipe. As consciousness fades he slumps forward, eyes bulging as the air refuses to travel into his thirsting body. Roga’s body isn’t meant to withstand such forces. His windpipe restricts further, the flow of oxygenated blood in his body simply stopping. In only a few more seconds, he will be quite dead.
“This man is not the apprentice you are speaking of.” Obi-Wan says, closing his eyes, concentraing, he repeats the waving of his hand towards Leia. “But he will not die by your hand.”
Poe is ignored by the Sith, not surprisingly. He turns his head back towards Roga, frowning as he watches the man choke to death. He takes one more glances at Leia, then runs at Roga, trying to grab him and pull him away, hoping that the choking is affected by distance.
Deke shoots daggers at Ix’s back and contemplates dragging her behind the speeder by her ear. “Get your nerfherdin’ arse over here, Anne!” He shouts, “This ain’t your battle, kid.”
This time, Kenobi’s energies are directed well enough to hurl the young Sith Apprentice well off of the catwalk.
Phoenix frowns even more, glancing back to Deke and grimacing as she trots over to the gambler, “So? Doesn’t mean I can’t do anythin’ t’ keep that guy from gettin’ choked t’ death or whatever.”
As she continues to crush Roga’s life from him, Leia is distracted, doesn’t prepare herself for the coming attack of the Jedi. The Force wave hammers into her, lifts and spins her, and at the very last moment, the air returns to Roga’s windpipe. Leia, meanwhile, is flung in an arc away from the security of the catwalk and into the open space over the Port Town cargo docks before she plummets about fifty feet to the street. Her shattered body lies lifeless, broken and bleeding. The lightsaber skitters and bounces toward a sewer grating.
Phoenix is crouched behind a speeder, wincing as Leia gets tossed like a child’s plaything. She watches the saber fly, starting to stand to go get it unless Deke moves to stop her.
Deke grunts at Phoenix and narrows his eyes. He does his best to keep both her and the battle in sight. “Let the geezer handle it,” the gambler spits, “ain’t nothin’ you or me could do to help.” The skittering lightsaber catches Deke’s attention and he begins to creep around the speeder now that Leia appears dead.
A whooshing sound is heard, as Obi-Wan retracts his light saber and begins to rush towards Leia, paying little attention to Roga at the moment, reaching out a hand, he tries to use the force to collect her light saber on the way, his cloak fluttering behind him.
Obi-Wan Kenobi is no longer wielding his Kenobi’s Lightsaber
Malflax grins widely and says,”No one will believe this when they get to see the recording.”
Roga lays on the ground, chest heaving slowly as the life-giving air returns to his body. He’s still quite unconscious, but his face has regained it’s blush of life.
The fallen warrior’s lightsaber whirls straight into Obi-Wan’s grasp.
Phoenix stands as she watches, blinking. The teen trots towards the Jedi as he retrieves Leia’s lightsaber unless Deke tackles Ix or does something else to stop her. At this point, yelling at her to stay won’t help.
Obi-Wan Kenobi clips Leia’s lightsaber next to his own. Reaching her fallen body, he kneels next to it, and begins to search of a sign of life. “It didn’t have to end this way.” he says quietly to himself.
Malflax stands up while depressing the button on his waist, then reaching for his toolcase.
Deke stops but a few paces from his previous hiding place. He puts two and two together and arches an eyebrow. “He’s one of them wizards the Imps are lookin’ for…” Deke whispers to himself.
Poe checks over Roga, making sure he’s okay, then he slowly stands up and moves away. He shakes his head, mutter to himself, “I wonder how the Emperor is going to spin this, making him look like the good guy yet again.” He pulls his hood down over his face and makes his way towards the Jedi, following Ix at a slow pace.
Leia is quite dead, blood soaking her dark Sith robes and smearing her fair-skinned face.
Obi-Wan Kenobi drops his head down, and sighs heavily. After a moment, he scoops her fallen body up in his arms, looking at her face for a moment, before he begins to walk away from the crowd that has now begun to form.