Star Wars: Uncertain Times, Desperate Measures

Chapter 59: A Jinxed Harrowing.

As the ship arrived outside the Corellia system, the protagonists bickered over the approach to take. Bando left to finish working on the Bacta tank with Ciri, Fiar left to go to his room, and Jinx went to his room to mediate. With time running out, Jinx plotted a course to Hapes via Commenor and Corellia and engaged the hyperdrive without consulting the rest of the crew.

As they were passing through Corellia, they were pulled from hyperspace abruptly, throwing Fiar and Bando for a loop. As they got to the bridge, they attempted to get the lay of the land. Bando scanned the system, and noticed that the Venators were heading to Selonia and bypassed Corellia. Jinx commanded Camilla to go to the other side of the system by going through Centerpoint, but noticed that she had a blank expression and was unresponsive. Fiar looked for the gravity well, but quickly determined the source was not technological, but was a projection of the Force. With Jinx taking the controls and Fiar plotting a hyperspace route to Commenor, they were hit by a massive ripple through the Force. With Fiar able to defend himself from the onslaught, Jinx was overwhelmed. Shortly after the event, the Ventors launched projectiles containing the Blue Shadow virus to Selonia and scrambled a wing of ARC 170 fighters to intercept the cruiser…that quickly turned around and headed back to the Venator.

With Jinx offering cryptic answers as to why they withdrew, they plotted the course and jumped to Commenor. While en route, Jinx sent a message to a series of planets warning them that they were targeted to receive the Blue Shadow virus and to take precautions. The trip was tense but uneventful, as the stress of the situation began to weigh on Jinx and dramatically shorten his temper. With Jinx being unapproachable Bando spoke with Morag, who informed him of the message Jinx sent along with the reactions: Panic, Xenophobia, and the treatment of Jinx as a terrorist via propaganda and media spin. With Morag locking Jinx out of the comms and Bando helping Ciri finish installing the medical facilities, they braced for arrival at Commenor.

Their stay in Commenor was remarkably brief but highly eventful. Upon arrival in the system, Bando, Fiar, and Jinx were examining and arguing over a large military and construction presence over Commenor. Camilla quickly and resounding took the ship to emergency full throttle and put the ship in evasive maneuvers…and narrowly avoided 2 massive ion cannon shots from the planet. Fiar quickly plotted a course on a detour, and they quickly left the system.

The journey to Hapes took another few days, and the tensions amongst the crew frayed. Due to a poorly worded command to B1-Ex to subdue Jinx, Jinx stormed away from a meeting with Bando to his cabin and was ambushed by a dual stun and ion grenade, knocking him out and frying all electronics in his cabin – including his door. As he woke up and realized he was stuck in his room, Jinx proceeded to use the Force to telekinetically pull the door open. As he was doing it, Fiar sensed his attempts…including a few rather large Force ripples that gave him a terrified thought: the Force use could act as a beacon to Kantor. After a tense showdown where Camilla, Betl, and Tamren abandoned the group in the bridge and locked out all bridge functions. Calming down after being marginalized, they prepared to arrive at Hapes.

As they arrived at Hapes and entered the Hapes Cluster, a series of Hapan ships arrived. After a brief exchange where Betl gave a long series of random phrases and code words, the ships escorted the Arquitens through the cluster to Hapes. As they traveled through, they were joined by additional ships, all bearing a unique crest signifying their alliance to particular Hapan planets. After Betl informed the crew of the Hapan culture and the importance of the escort, the crew prepared to land at Hapes. The primary delegation – Tamren, Camilla, Betl, and Morag – dressed up in their finest and revealing attire as benefitting the Hapan culture’s strong matriarchal system, and the men were groomed and presented to the women to be judged as worthy of being their pretty cannon fodder male subordinates. After a male entourage was selected, they were given the rules: the women talked and the men stayed silent, the women initiated eye contact and all interactions, they were not to eat or drink anything offered instructed, and that if they were to be propositioned by a Hapan female they were not allowed to say no.

With Jinx reacting poorly, Bando reacting amusingly, and Fiar reacting giddily, the crew made final preparations for their arrival at Hapes.

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