The presence that was approaching Zandro's office was one he knew well, and he grinned at the thought of seeing his brother once again. He hadn't seen the Kiffar for a while, and although their meeting would be brief, it would be good to know that his comrade was alive and well, something that one couldn't take for granted when dealing with Dark Jedi. A knock at the door sounded and Zandro stood up, his voice raised.
“You don't need to knock di'kut, come on in.”
Celahir walked through the door and was greeted by the widely-grinning Arconae and a big hug from the man currently running the Bureau for contracts. The hug ended and Zandro took a step back, grabbed a datapad from the desk and offered it to the Kiffar Obelisk before describing the mission.
“Specifics are on there, but here is a basic breakdown. We've lost one of our outermost sensor arrays over on the far North tip of this continent. We don't know who are how they did this but we need to get it back under your control. You have some mad skills with computers, so I thought of you. Basically, we need you to get the station back under our control and also find out who did this for us. If you get a chance, take them out, otherwise just get us the intel so we can set someone else on them. Good luck, happy hunting.”
Target: Northern Sensor Array Station 42b
Objective: Regain control of the array
Bonus Objective: Get intel about who took over the Array and provide intel back to Arcona. If opportunity presents itself, take them out.
It was always nice to see his any of his brothers again, but seeing Zandro did Celahir a world of good. After he had stepped down from his position as Consul he had gone on a leave of absence. Although he had not expected anything less from Zandro, he burst with pride to see just how well his brother was doing.
This mission meant more to the young Kiffar than was obvious. Not only was this one of the few times that he had gone out without any of his squad mates; this was also the first mission he had been assigned to since he had his new tools implanted. With the knowledge that the Bureau had selected this type of mission for him, a grin teased at the corners of his mouth. This would be the perfect opportunity to find out if the Psicom Interface could live up to it’s full expectations.
As Celahir went through the familiar corridors on his way to Soulfire’s barracks to prepare for the mission, he realised he really did feel at home here in Arcona. This surprised the youth, as he expected never to feel that way during his early days in the Clan. It still made him feel baffled at times; how he began so abruptly in the Brotherhood as a wet-behind-the-ears rookie to the leader of an entire Clan in such a short period of time. Gently surfacing from somewhat of a daydream, he laughed at himself. How could he have forgotten about what his Psicom enabled him to do so shortly after getting all fired up at the opportunity to test it. He didn’t need to be at the barracks to download the needed information; he could simply download it to his implanted hard drive using the Interface. Remembering this he lit a cigarette as he connected digitally to his computer. This was why the former Consul had had the Psicom implanted, as it allowed him unlimited access via a scomp-link. The device would let him know if there was a link within reach which allowed him to connect. Once connected he could freely browse the computer as if he was operating it. The Psicom was programmed to require adequate focus so that he could simply select the file and folder names that he wanted to download and allow them to transfer to his implanted hard drive.
Whilst he allowed the interface to connect and to begin the transfer, he took a slow walk in another direction and came to the outer hold. While normally he’d consider the slower download speeds too time consuming, he decided otherwise. The weather captivated the Prelate. He loved the warmth of the sun on his face, accompanied by a soft, complimenting breeze ruffling through his hair. The view from the Citadel was breathtaking, he thought, and he made a mental note to go there more often.
A few hours later Celahir was in the Soulfire barracks, feeling quite worried. After he had analyzed all the data he collected he had come to a scary conclusion. There was nothing; absolutely nothing. The station appeared completely deserted from about two days ago by the security footage. This could only mean one thing: the station’s surveillance cams were hacked after which they were made to loop. It didn’t make sense, what could they possibly want, they didn’t hack further into Arconan systems. They actually disconnected completely, the Kiffar had no choice but to try and gain physical access to the station. He decided he had to be dropped off, and who else would he ask than his Sergeant. With a click of his jaw his comlink turned on.
“Ori’vod, I need a favour.” the link stayed silent. “Ori’vod! Wake up!” Just when the Obelisk wanted to close the link a tired groan sounded from the other side.
“Haar'chak, do you know what time it is, vod’ika?”
Only then did Celahir notice it was the early hours of the day. He always lost track of time when he was working. “My apologies bro, but I need a favour.”
“What do you need, it’d better be worth waking me up.” Sashar yawned, and while Celahir tried his hardest not to, he reciprocated.
“I’ll be blunt, I need a ride. You think you could drop me off at the Northern Sensor Array? Station 42b?” A noticeable amount of seconds passed by. “Sash...”
Before he could complete his plea, the Sergeant answered. “...Sure, alright, alright, but why do you need a ride?”
“I don’t have any clue of what I’ll find there and I don’t want to leave a ship around for any enemy to find.”
“I see. How soon?”
The youth sighed meekly. “Erm, kinda like, now?” He heard his older brother chuckle.
“Alright, I’ll see you on the Valour’s Fall in one hour.” “Ok, thanks Orí’v...” Before he could thank his older brother the link closed.
About 90 minutes later Celahir was inside Station 42b, they hadn’t changed the keylocks. The moment he was inside he plugged a scomplink into the first server he encountered. This allowed him to browse and access the entire array as long as he was within 50 kilometres of the link. Grabbing his lightsaber the Prelate wondered if he would ever be able to create a silent lightsaber. He slid into one of the maintenance rooms, and accessed the security cams with his Psicom. Switching from camera to camera he scanned the entire complex for any signs of life. There it was, he nearly skipped through. There were shadows moving, they seemed human. Getting control of the sensor array wouldn’t cost Celahir anything but time; he was skilled and experienced enough. Setting up all cameras to loop, just as the ones who had taken control of the array had wasn’t really a problem either.
The Dark Jedi headed to the main control room, noticing several shadows. They could never see him coming, glancing down at his deactived saber one last time. It was a habit of the Kiffar, knowing he was holding it, he always checked, just to be sure. He sneaked up behind the duo sitting behind the main system. They seemed like shatting themselves when they turned around shocked, on the hissing sound of an activating saber. Celahir wasn’t the most impressive of builds, but anyone in their beskar’gam would shock the people they’d sneak up on.
“Do not move, do not yell, and keep your hands where I can see them.” the Obelisk said with a wide grin behind his helmet.
“Are there more of you?”
The two started stuttering “N..n..no..” One of them said, with tears in his eyes.
“Y..y..yes” The other one managed to say before passing out. These weren’t pro’s and Cel knew it. He knocked out what seemed to be a mercenary out with the butt of his saber. After that he tied them up and taped their mouths.
“Now where would the others be hiding..” He mumbled to himself.
The Arconan sat down and continued checking cameras from where he left off with his Psicom.
“Empty, empty, empty...” He was getting annoyed now, these two definitely weren’t the leader type, there had to be somebody else. If it weren’t for the Force warning Celahir of his company, he could’ve ended up in a sticky situation. With inhuman speed he dashed towards his enemy, who surprisingly didn’t seem shocked but instead, fired at him. The blaster bolt scarred the Mando’s breastplate, he could feel some of the heat through his beskar’gam, a split second later he was squeezing the merc’s throat shut.
“Who sent you?!” He shouted. “Answer me, damnit!”
He shook the guy a bit, and threw him into the corner.
“Look, we can do this the easy way or the hard way.” Celahir never understood why guys like these wouldn’t just answer. It’s not like they had any other chance to survive this.
“I’m asking you one last time, tell me who sent you and I’ll let you and those two sad freaks go.”
“Okay, I’ll talk” the now somewhat frightened being said. “We’re hired mercenaries.”
“You think I’m stupid? Really? You think I can’t see that?” If it wasn’t for the intel he needed on who was responsible for this, he would’ve killed all three of them right there and then. It was something about obvious answer that just pissed him off.
Walking towards the mercenary in the corner with his saber still activated he spoke again, more calm now. “I don’t care who you are, I want to know who sent you, am I clear?”
“Y..y..yes” The now more nervous getting merc stammered. “We’ve been hired by some guy called...”
“Called what?!” The Obelisk interrupted, this was taking too long, and he was a very impatient man.
“I..I forgot his name, it was something with..t..t..Taldrya.”
Both anger and surprise hit the youth here, Taldryans were behind this? He could understand them wanting to know more about Arcona, but it didn’t make sense. Why take over the array and disconnect it.
“Why did they send you?” The Mando asked
“We we’re supposed to lure someone here” The now talkative man spoke, seemingly regained some hope to survive. “This...guy has some Psicom device in his brains, and we were supposed to upload a virus onto it once he connected to the mainframe.”
Hearing this Celahir immediately closed any open connection on his Psicom, and made sure he’d keep it that way until he was sure it was clean.
“I’ve heard enough” The Arconan spoke, after which he mercilessly beheaded the Mercenary.
He shot the two others with the blaster from their leader, after which he sat down to get everything up and running again. After running a thorough clean on the systems, he reconnected with the rest of the Arconan system. His work was done here, now to report back to Zandro, something he did not look forward to. He contacted Sashar to be picked up and told him to come with him when he went to Zandro once back in the Citadel.
Back at the Citadel Celahir hasted to Zandro’s office together with Sashar. His old master didn’t know what was going on, but judging from the Kiffar’s face this was serious. As always the Quaestor felt the presence of his brothers nearing, but something was off. This time Celahir didn’t knock, but simply barged into the office. Closely following the Prelate, Sashar closed the doors behind him and grabbed his favourite slicer.
“Mind telling me what’s up with you?” He annoyingly asked.
Zandro interfered before Celahir could answer. “Welcome back bro, I see we’ve regained contact with the array, what’s wrong?”
The youngest brother sighed deeply and spoke after running his hand through his hair. “We have indeed regained contact, but there’s more. While at the sensor array I stumbled upon three mercenaries, they did not pose any direct threat. There is something that does though.”
Zandro and Sashar look at each other after which the both said “What is it bro?” They sounded worried, as they should.
“The mercenaries were hired by..” Celahir sighed deeply. “By one of the Taldrya.”
Comments: Cel, if you can keep writing like this then you will make me a very happy man. You not only wrote a convincing and enjoyable account of your contract, you also managed to tie in the bonus objective that was offered and did it convincingly. A spattering of spelling and grammar problems here and there will need to be watched out for, but you really did an excellent job here. I'd recommend a few more contracts and then maybe think about an S Class to really give yourself a challenge, but you more than did yourself proud with this one. Well done!