Following Visase’s lead, the party walked onto the central platform and activated the elevator mechanism on it. Finding themselves in the front lobby of Hasel Pilen’s office, the party found a strange lack of additional security measures; and the sound of a frustrated Sullustan cursing behind the doors that read “Mayor” on it. Orwell, finding that the door was locked remedied that problem with a well timed swing of his Arg’garok.
Breaking the door open, and prying the rest of it open, the party came across the source of that noise. Hasel Pilen was desperately trying to escape from the party in the escape pod equipped into the side of his office- only for the escape pod to not deploy due to there being a “blockage” in the passage that the pod is supposed to fly out of. Hasel yelled and cried about not wanting to die, but Visase and Taral told Hasel to calm down and tell them what he knows of Dijiec and Orm. While Hasel spoke what little he knew, a news report of the Galactic Federation’s victory over the Mandalorian world of Thorov continued on in the background. Hasel proved to be nothing more than a puppet to maintain a seat of power within the government for Orm. When Dijiec disappeared, one of Maccus’ agents, a man named Temnoz told Hasel Pilen to switch over from serving Dijiec to serving Orm instead, and his position in power will not change. Hasel complied, and asked few questions, but did complain about how the guards who he was told would defend him to death turned away from their duties.
The party gave Hasel and ultimatum; either come with them for the possibility of surviving, or remain in his office and be subject to whatever mercy Maccus can provide. Hasel, after much deliberation, agreed to just going with the party.
On the way back to the ship, the party encountered both Sun Heart and Stormcaller recovering from the battle who reminded the party that their turning away from Maccus is a risk, and that the party must remember them if they are to be saved. After reassuring the G’Nathir of their promise, they parted ways. Hasel wanted to shout something, but Orwell’s urging kept Hasel in line.
Back on the Nest, Issilum took the Nest out of Cloud City’s hangar and flew it towards the Figo’s Wind. Along the way, the party heard a news report about some violent civil unrest on the world of Dac stemming from the politicians and groups that were elected into offices suddenly turning away from the platforms they once stood on in order to pressure the companies of Mon Calamari to support Emeriss Arms. The Mon Calamari, being inclined to rebel against perceived injustice has taken matters into their own hands. The leader of Dac’s leading corporation Infinite Depths Inc; Natmar Smers mentioned how he had no choice but to fund Emeriss Arms’ efforts in the Mandalorian conflict.
Taral also contacted Jedi Master Evarr Dreskel about the situation of the Plathuui refugees and their G’Nathir defenders, requesting for the Jedi Order to come up with a way to extract them and bring them to a safer place. Evarr Dreskel admitted that he wasn’t in much of a place to really put in that kind of order but that he would get to it as soon as he could, or perhaps to mention it to Arken Taro instead. Evarr Dreskel was visiting the Jedi Temple of Ossus with Jedi Knight Hassan to gather clues on Dalbar’s motives. Their gathering of clues came in the form of meditation.
The two of them have discovered some traces in the force that came from Dalbar, connecting to the minds of very few Jedi Masters, who in turn gave out Dalbar’s additional orders in datachips issued to each Jedi leader on board a transport ship to evacuate them to a safe place, with Dalbar’s orders simply being “subdue the pilot, and take the Jedi to an isolated place and survive.” In other words, Dalbar was being very discrete, which, according to Dreskel, is exactly how Dalbar fights his foes. If Dalbar felt that he didn’t have to be discrete, he wouldn’t. Evarr mentioned that he and Hassan will look into the force some more to draw more conclusive evidence; but at this point, Evarr is keeping an open mind about what it is that is really going on. Taral mentioned a chilling thought he had about the possibility that the enemy managed to clone a clone of Dalbar and put him in the place as the real Dalbar, what with the discovery that the enemy has found ways to clone midichlorians. Evarr mentioned the logistics behind something like that, but then said that the beauty of that plan is that it is so improbably that nobody would believe the one revealing it.
During these conversations, Hasel Pilen got pretty tipsy off of the Dentari Moonshine that Kader served him.
Entering the hangar, the Nest was there just in time to see Master Urik Blop and the Jedi he was looking after leave in a transport ship, but not before waving at the Nest.
Taral ran off to see to business on the Figo’s Wind, while the rest of the party moved to the Bridge with Hasel Pilen in hand to meet up with Tavish. Making it to the Bridge, Tavish was nowhere to be found; however Tavish’s gamorrean bodyguard Korech was present. Orwell and Korech spoke to each other in the Gamorrean tongue, talking about how Tavish is in the medbay and is probably pretending to be sick to keep away from the party. Then the two of them laughed before Orwell led the party to the medbay where they reconvened with Taral who had finished his business.
Entering the medbay, the party found Tavish Brix lying on the top sheets of a bed with his chest covered in intense bandaging. Orwell asked if Tavish slipped on a bottle when he found a rat, while Taral asked if it was a shaving accident. Tavish insisted it was one of his crew members that stabbed a few times with a vibroknife, and that his crew was a rowdy bunch. The party let Tavish have custody of Hasel Pilen for his own purposes, while Tavish spoke more of the last target- the Twi’lek businessman Brulu Aloc. Tavish mentioned that Brulu was likely breaking some wills by taking the mantle of the owner of Ryloth’s Hoopin’ Slam team, so the likely thing to get Brulu to talk would be to get past his web of laws that he erected around himself much like how Azed Ther erected a security net on Naboo.
Tavish stated that despite his condition, he was still good enough to not have Issilum take command of the ship. Tavish talked about how he is going to set a course to Ryloth and fly over the Ryl province of Onek’weg; the birthplace of Clars Stellartrotter, inventer of the Hoopin’ Slam game, and also rumored to have been the home of Triumvirate Member Jedi Master Keiran before being trained as a Jedi. Just then, the alerts rang throughout the Figo’s Wind; which Tavish explained was likely due to the incursion of an interesting ship.
After limping to the bridge, Tavish found that the ship was an X-Wing starfighter, and the same model that was being used in the Battle of Thorov at that. Explaining that he was likely a deserter and would be worth a lot of money, Tavish commanded for the tractor beams to be activated to bring in their prize. The party followed the limping Tavish to the hangar, where a badly damaged X-Wing was put into.
Commanding for the pilot to get out of his cockpit and explain himself, the pilot did just that fearfully; believing that Tavish’s threats of selling him back to the Federation as a deserter is very likely. After mentioning that the Pilot was part of the first wave of the fleet to attack Thorov, the party took over in talking to him. His ship was holding out great against the Mandalorian’s firepower, and in many ways was actually defeating them. Then the second wave of the fleet arrived; and shut down any hyperspace jumping and modes of escape before they opened fire upon both the first wave of the fleet and the Mandalorians alike. Fortunately for the pilot, his droid managed to calculate a slight error in the formation of the star destroyers of the second wave, allowing them to make a hyperspace jump to Bespin where he was promptly captured by Tavish Brix.
Visase asked for the pilot’s name, and the pilot said that he was called Cadet Yun Brodal, and his astromech droid was F8-Z2. With that, Visase allowed him and the droid a spot on the ship. The X-Wing on the other hand is badly damaged, and cannot fit so well in the compartments of the Nest.
At that, Tavish ordered for the Figo’s Wind to make way to Ryloth while the rest of the party walked into the Nest to rest up, knowing it will take a day or so to arrive at Ryloth.
Inside the Nest, the holoprojector was busy showing an interview between a newscaster and the new CEO of Emeriss Arms; Faltar’irth’edina (Tarth). Tarth talked a good deal about the space platform over Coruscant’s star, explaining that it is a factory; and that his scientists have found out how to make it so that building platforms over high gravity fields can be cheaper in the long run over it being built over a low gravity center. Tarth talked about harnessing the sun’s energy to fuel the making of starships in his factory. Tarth also had his whole arm covered in bandages, which, when asked by the interviewer what that was all about, Tarth insisted that he was sick but hes getting better now.
During this interview, Zendral’s body language became more strained, and Polis found himself asking Zendral if Tarth was the same guy. When the rest of the party asked what was going on, Zendral mention that Tarth was his mentor back when he worked for Emeriss. Then when asked if Tarth was worse than Valen’resh’inrokini, Zendral merely said that “Tarth knows more than Valen’resh’inrokini knows”, and left it at that.
Then the party called Arken Taro to update him on the situation. Arken mentioned that what concerned him was how quickly the Federation blazed through Thorov- especially considering that Thorov was one of the most fortified worlds in Mandalorian space. The first thing the party did was send Yun Brodal to tell Arken his story about what transpired over Thorov, which served to worry Arken a lot more, and make him wonder a lot more about the implications. Arken said that he will need to look through the military files and see what was planned out in them to gleam some clues.
Visase also asked Arken about the situation with the Plathuui refugees to see where they should go. Arken was hard pressed to come up with an idea of where to safely put them, especially after mention that Maccus would likely pursue them if he knows where they are. Arken’s idea was to take a lot of good friends he has in the military who are transport pilots. They will then take the refugees to where the pilots think they should go. Arken then mentioned that he wouldn’t know where they were being taken, and nor should he know- because at this time, Arken is likely the first target on Orm’s watch for removal. With that, Arken asked about his family before hanging up the communicator to work on the new projects the party came up for him.
As the Figo’s Wind entered hyperspace, the party was eating dinner in the common area of the Nest with the news holoprojector playing out various tidbits of news. One of those reports was based on Jedi Master Camth Drucas’ Star Destroyer, which was now en route from Thorov to the planet of Mandalore. The interviewer spoke with a very cheerful tone with Camth Drucas over how the Mandalorian conflict was finally ending, and how it will end with a one on one fight with Mandalore the Reborn himself.
As Camth Drucas spoke of how confident he was feeling, Niuulaj entered the room holding a bowl of soup. But when Niuulaj turned to look at the holoprojector, his face became petrified, and Niuulaj dropped his bowl of soup. His petrified look contorted into anger, and then he lunged at the holoprojector grabbing onto it and staring at it closely before saying with heavily restrained anger, “Its him.” It was then that Niuulaj lost it, gibbering about how he knows that the man posing as Camth Drucas was Maccus. Verin tried to calm Niuulaj down with some humor, but that only got Niuulaj worked up, spitting curses at Camth Drucas/Maccus for being a fiend and an animal who took everything he had. The interview with Camth Drucas ended with a “By the end of this war, I can ensure that their next Mandalore will be one that will serve and support the Federation”. Niuulaj broke down at that point, with Verin and Henea both trying to lead Niuulaj to a table where he can talk about what exactly happened between him and Maccus.
Taral and Visase jumped on the action to quickly notify Arken Taro of their new revelation of where Maccus was. Arken was in disbelief, but then he let it sink in. Arken said that he would contact Evarr Dreskel about not getting the Jedi Order involved in the evacuation of the Plathuui refugees from Cloud City. Then Arken mentioned that the Jedi Order as a whole cannot be trusted, if someone such as Maccus had managed to infiltrate the order. Arken said that there are Jedi that are trustworthy, but just make sure not the get the Jedi Order itself involved. Arken then said his goodbyes, and prepared for a long night.