31
Aug
11

Taris part 5

Taris Part Five

We followed the trail for three clicks into the jungle, south of where the haulers had been hit. We found tracks of ten men, six of which were carrying crates of supplies. As we followed the trail, I looked around us and still couldn’t get over the beauty of the jungle among the ruins of what used to be city. Wildlife had reclaimed this planet. I doubted Taris would ever be the “gem” the republic wanted to return it to.

We reached a camp just after dark; this is where the tracks had ended so this was where we would most likely find the supplies. The defensive systems were solid enough to keep out rakghouls and the wild life, but a Jedi and a trooper like me didn’t have any problem getting by them. They had standard perimeter alarms and generators, no doubt looted from republic supplies, a half dozen probe droids patrolling the boundaries, and a few sentries doing their best to stay awake; definitely not a military operation. We left T7 at the perimeter and continued into the camp.

Zotta used some Jedi distraction to get us past a couple of choke points, which allowed us to easily make it to what appeared to be the main storage tent. It was our best guess on where the supplies would be.

We entered the tent and found it to be empty of people, but found both the missing food rations and the serum. The food containers had been opened, but the serum appeared to be untouched. We had to decide whether to fight our way out with the serum which would slow us down, or destroy it and quickly make our way out of the camp.

It was late and the camp was quiet. My mind began to wander as I thought over the decision.

“Dimbo, we are not alone,” Zotta said quietly.

In the far corner of the tent was a cage with three Twi’leks inside. They were looking at us, probably wondering if they should shout out to the guards or not. I walked over to them and the older male Twi’lek put himself between me and the two females.

“It’s okay, I’m not here to hurt you,” I told him. “Who are you?”

“My name is Alten and this is my wife and daughter. We were captured by these pirates shortly after we arrived on Taris. We are traders, or we were anyway. All is lost now. These pirates stole all of our supplies and plan on selling us into slavery.”

“Listen, my name is Dimbo. I’m a member of the Republic armed forces. My friend Zotta and I are going to get you out of here.”

Zotta walked over to cell drew his lightsaber and cut through the lock.

“Thank you! Oh, thank you!” Alten said.

“Everyone stay quiet. We have a mission to complete before we can get out of here,” I said. “We need to blow up one of these crates.”

“There is a box of marked demolitions in the other corner over there,” the daughter said as she pointed.

“Thank you…” I trailed off hoping she would give me her name.

“Lechelle,” she replied.

“Right, Lechelle.”

She was beautiful. I’d never seen such wonder. She was an inch or two shorter than me, had luscious blue skin, bluer than any ocean, and her lekku hung one behind her back and the other across her chest. I could tell she was afraid, but she had strength in her eyes.

“Okay Leftenant, let’s get to work,” Zotta said, bringing me back down to Taris. “Are you sure you want to destroy this serum?”

“I’m sure I’m not going to let the General hurt anymore people,” I told my Jedi friend. Zotta walked over to the demolition crate as I approached the crate with the serum. I opened the crate and took out one small vial; we needed proof for Zotta’s mission and for evidence against the General. I placed the vial in my utility belt and helped Zotta rig the charges he had found.

“How are we going to get out of here?” Lechelle asked.

“The same way we got in,” I replied. “Nice and easy. When we are far enough away I’m going to detonate the charge and that will be enough of a distraction for us to get away.”

“Mr. Dimbo, could we take some of these food rations with us?” Alten asked. “We will need something to get our business back up and running.”

“That’s okay with me. Take all you can carry, but we need to be able to move quickly.”

Alten’s wife, Lynnda, found some backpacks and the three of them loaded them to the brim.

“I can carry one of those too,” I told Alten.

“As can I,” Zotta spoke. Between the five of us we were able to carry enough supplies for the Twi’lek to have an alright start on Taris.

We went out the back of the tent. I took point in front, with Zotta at the rear. We ran quickly across the camp. A few minutes later we meet up with T7 at the camp’s defensive perimeter.  We were far enough away now to detonate the charges. I told Lechelle and her parents to take cover, just in case. I pressed the detonator button and nothing. Nothing happened, no explosion.

“This is unfortunate my friend,” Zotta said to me.

“Okay everyone, listen up. Zotta is going to take you back to the main road. Wait for me there.”

Apparently Alten and his daughter had found a couple of blasters while they were gathering up supplies. Alten quickly pulled two blasters out of his pack and handed one to Lechelle. Apparently she was handier with a blaster then her mother.

“We will be safe with the Jedi,” Alten said firmly.

“I’m going to go back and detonate the charges myself. I’ll meet up with you guys soon,” I told the group.

“Dimbo,” Zotta said speaking so only I could hear. “This is too dangerous for you to do alone, I must go with you.”

“No my friend, you must take care of these civilians. I will complete our mission and catch up with you in plenty of time. You won’t even know I’m gone.” Then I spoke in a whisper, “Keep them safe Zotta, keep her safe.”

I looked at Lechelle one more time as Zotta nodded. Alten took my pack of supplies and the four of them disappeared into the night.

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