Star Wars: Shards

Episode 2.08 - The Web Of Silar Mins, Chapter 3
The Crime Lord

Star Wars – Shards of Infamy

Episode 2.08

The Web of Silar Mins, Chapter 3

The road to get Zallara’s request and her information has been an unusual. A renegade droid assault at the docking ports by compromised droids. Then a newly arrived collection of refugees vanishing from under the eyes of the Mechis Lightning Guard. Nothing so far had been routine about landing on Mechis II.

It was hard to say Zellara’s information came with a price, or even to call it a request. What she asked for was a veiled cry for help. But not so much for her, but for her son.

Zellara shakes her head at any more questions. With a long sigh, she finally admits that’s all she knows. Her eyes turned to the table while she gathered her last Halud cards together. The holopaintings of people and buildings on them catch the glow-gourd light for just a second. They shimmer with a faint ionization aura before the cards vanish into a pocket on the leg of Zallara’s trousers.

At last she rises, admitting to exhaustion. She takes her leave to retire and rest for a few hours. Zallara promises to keep alert in case they run into trouble. As if to punctuate the moment, Greelo’s Bountypedia chimes as the bounty on Rushlight has been tagged as ‘in progress’ by a new bounty hunter.

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Episode 2.08 - The Web of Silar Mins
The Informant

Star Wars – Shards of Infamy

Episode 2.08

The Web of Silar Mins, Chapter 2

The Countess de Beaufort’s job offer was simple: Land on Mechis II and speak to a Zallara Terrek in the Midland district about Silar Mins. But some philosophies in the galaxy would say that is perhaps why it was not going according to plan.

A blue and gold 3PO droid scurry across the landing zone tarmac with two of Calais’ Defense Force troopers as escort. They arrive at the refugee ship, the Damascus, while Port Authority medics look over the still recovering Lightning Guard and Carabiners. Lieutenant Grimes of the Port Authority meets the droid and escort at the foot of the Damascus loading ramp to escort the droid aboard.

There have been no new attacks reported, from droids or otherwise. But at other landing zones along the Port, other loader droids that went rogue are being examined. Port Authority technicians and mechanics struggle to keep up with the massive workload. No landing zone seems to have been left unscathed. Columns of smoke draw gray smudges along a pastel city skyline.

At the Damascus, no tracks remains of the missing refugees, even though the hidden lower hatch seems to be the actual route of escape. Meanwhile, the small flimsiplast sheets slipped into the hero’s belongings emit a soft chime. From Rushlight to Greelo, datapads echo the sound – the data transfer was accepted. After that the flimsiplasts dissolve into powder and vanish into the mid-morning air.

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Episode 2.08 - The Web Of Silar Mins
The Missing Refugees

Star Wars – Shards of Infamy

Episode 2.08

The Web of Silar Mins, Chapter 1

The fires of freedom take hold in the CHALCEDON system giving birth to the FREEWORLD LEAGUE. Elsewhere, the SLAVE LORDS and the BLOODSMITHS regroup to begin their SHADOW WAR against the young government and the JEDI ORDER.

On Allandor, the Jarl brothers arrived at the Jedi temple. Working with Master Skywalker, they fashion a device that has a chance to allow the ARC troopers to leave their holocron prisons.

Meanwhile in the Mechis system, medics swarmed aboard the BANANA REPUBLIC while marines of HOUSE BEAUFORT bolster the ship’s security. Traps are dismantled and repairs are made, all under the watchful eye of Shree.

Once safer, the crew of the Banana Republic are invited to Mechis III to the estate of COUNTESS LOUISE DE BEAUFORT for rest and recovery. A week later, they join the Countess in her sunroom to discuss a mutually beneficial arrangement …

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Episode 3.05 - Menace of the Slave Lords, Chapter 10
Threats of Tomorrow

Star Wars – Shards of Exploration

Episode 3.05

Menace of the Slave Lords, Chapter 10

The Bloodsmiths were in retreat from the planet Chalcedon and their ‘worldship’, the Acheron, had fled from Chalcedon’s neighbor, the ringed gas giant Ondor.

The raiders left destruction in their wake. The Undercity, the shadow port under the ruins of Port Tanin, had been buried when the mesa had been collapsed. Mining Guild colonies in the Monorick moon system had been attacked.

Many of which had gone silent, while others – like Port Greymouth on Monorick 6 – beat back the attackers and survived the onslaught. On Chalcedon, the fledgling Freeworlds League and its Fremen forces under the command of General Vance Kerplokin, struggle to combat the rise of self-proclaimed warlords and opportunistic pirates.

Meanwhile, in the orbit of Ondor, a final confrontation takes place. Aerena and So’zen confront the mysterious unknown droids that have turned to face Aerena. Is the purple glow adoration? Respect? Or a threat?

While aboard the Kilo’s Star, Sir Davish Tam one of the last surviving Crimson Knights, confronts Boba Fett in an attempt to recover Jedi Knight Vanya Ysadora before she is taken to Grakor the Hutt on Nar Shaddaa.

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Episode 3.05 - Menace of the Slave Lords, Chapter 9
Echoes of Rebellion

Star Wars – Shards of Exploration

Episode 3.05

Menace of the Slave Lords, Chapter 9

“We have heard. We are coming.”

The cryptic response plays over the communication feed. Amid her elation of success, Vanya Ysadora feels a small disturbance through the Force. Like the ripples in a pond when a sleeping giant stirs.

Cheers echo through the enormous cavern housing the Undercity. The blaster fire has stopped. The rumble from Bloodsmith hover-transports growls then recedes. A runner from one of the local rebels calls out that the Bloodsmiths are pulling back!

The sounds of victory echo in the smoky air as Felnir Jax, one of the younger hunters for Ragnar Syndicate, walks into the small clearing. Boba Fett turns to face Vanya and the disguised Danar announcing its time to go.

Meanwhile in the orbit of Chalceon’s innermost gas giant fire lights the void.

The first volley from the Medusa’s x-wings hammered the Bloodsmith tie fighters. Ships blossomed into hot, bright novas of light. The Medusa squadron fired on the transports the second they passed the Bloodsmith outer patrols.

Slower transports, filled with now free prisoners, jolted and rocked before their engines flared out one at a time. Power flickers, making a desperate struggle to keep shields, point defense blasters and even life support online…

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Episode 3.05 - Menace of the Slave Lords, Chapter 8
Strange Alliances

Star Wars – Shards of Exploration

Episode 3.05

Menace of the Slave Lords, Chapter 8

The dark sky above Monorick 6 was alive with dying wreckage. Shattered starship components burn up in the atmosphere. Larger portions fall to ground in the deep black desert sands.

Davish, So’zen and Aerena return to the docking bay in Port Graymouth. The mines seem – at last – headed for peace, quiet and a well-fought for ‘return to normal’. But questions about the hive of mysterious insects sends Davish and So’zen – followed by Aerena – out to the crater in the desert.

There they find the hive crafting an unusual scaffold made of the local minerals, such as the unstable mexalite that runs thick in Monorick 6. Davish and So’zen head to the crater’s edge for a closer look, only to be captured and taken down to the hive! Aerena acts fast, following on her speeder bike into the crater.

Discovering the ‘hive’ has a collective intelligence all its own, a negotiation breaks out between Aerena and the hive queen over the miners, So’zen and Davish. She brokers a deeper bargain that So’zen helps finalize once he was freed from captivity. The hives would work with the miners. A symbiosis of a sort. Already, the hive worker drones have started to pair up with miners to assist with extracting new ore and shore up tunnels with the hive’s more durable honeycombed support structures.

That only leaves the matter of the now silent mining colonies and the mysterious coordinates that the Nightsister raider fled toward.

Meanwhile on Chalcedon, the slave rebellion burns its way through the city. Word of a “Freeworld’s League” at Port Etmar lead by Nalarine Kanter spreads faster than the fires. Hijacked ships ferry escaped slaves toward this desperate hope for freedom.

Among flame-baked ruins near the docking bays, acrid smoke drifts through the underground air. Vanya, Danar and Boba Fett stand among the ruins. Nearby the former gladiator turned assassin, Thira, moans in pain. She’s seriously wounded but alive.

Her partner? The assassin had once again slipped through their grasp. Around the corner from the urban battlefield, they hear the sounds and voices of freed slaves, now freedom fighters, managing the escape ships under the watchful eye – and occasional assistance – of Darth Vondromas.

Meanwhile, a section of the underground city goes ominously silent…

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Episode 3.05 - Menace of the Slave Lords, Chapter 7
Rebellions and Hope

Star Wars – Shards of Exploration

Episode 3.05

Menace of the Slave Lords, Chapter 7

Trouble brews across the system of Chalcedon. Deep beneath the sands of Chalcedon the shadow port of Undercity is on high alert. A slave uprising has exploded at one side of the city. The fire of revolution burns hot and is spreading through Undercity. Guards and slavers were caught off guard but are already gathering for a heavy response.

Beneath the cover of the civil unrest, Danar has tracked down the missing Bendu priestess. Belshanna has been put in the Undercity’s fighting arena along with two Ragnar Syndicate bounty hunters for sport. Wounded, the bounty hunters fall back to the decorative flora in the arena’s fighting pit to protect Belshanna. On the other side, a pack of the rare levanari rush out of the underbrush on their side of the arena.

Above, in the stands, Danar reports on the fight back to Vanya and Vondromas. He also spots the elusive assassin they fought earlier. Then the assassin wraps himself in his cloak and fades from sight.

Half a system away, an unidentified Mon Calamari Star Cruiser continues to assault the mining colony on Monorik 6. Turbo lasers pound at the surface. So far the colony’s shields have held.

So’zen, Davish and Aerena stopped the first attempt at a ground assault. But this was at the cost of Aerena’s companion, Spook, and almost her x-wing. Nearby, So’zen’s z-95 survives an initial barrage but is heavily damaged. Unable to help, Davish is caught in a desperate fight against three advanced tie fighters.

And then the star cruiser locked its tractor beam onto Aerena’s x-wing …
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Episode 3.05 - Menace of the Slave Lords, Chapter 6
A Hive of Scum and Villany

Star Wars – Shards of Exploration

Episode 3.05

Menace of the Slave Lords, Chapter 6

A call for help from Ragnar Syndicate brought Vanya, Danar and Zaye to Port Nevermore and the Collector’s warehouse. A robbery gone wrong, disposable drones and other clues set them on a collision course with a murderous stranger. Skilled in both the Force and mundane techniques, could he have been the assassin that participated in the murder of the two street judges?

It’s hard to say. But the chase goes on for him and for the missing Bendu priestess, Belshanna. Right through an underground town beneath the surface of Chalcedon. From the floating holo figures and signs, the location is the poster child for one of the infamous Shadow Ports of the galaxy. A true hive of scum and villainy.

It was also a long way from Port Etmar.

Meanwhile, half a system away on the black desert moon of Monorik 6, the Nightsister raiders blast away from the hidden underground base.

So’zen, Aerena, and Davish watch with mixed emotions. Relief and frustration. But while the nightsisters are gone, their allies aren’t. The enforcers were left behind in the eager hands of their former slaves; miners of Monorik 6, who have had enough.

And while the beetles crunch on the abundance of the mexalite in the hangar, one of the freed miners picks up a forgotten plasma cutter and turns towards one of his former captors. A dark gleam shimmers in the abused man’s eye…

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Episode 3.05 - Menace of the Slave Lords, Chapter 5
Chapter 5: Shadow Ports

Star Wars – Shards of Exploration

Episode 3.05

Menace of the Slave Lords, Chapter 5

A request from Jerrod Quantas took Aerena, So’zen and Davish to the mining colony of Port Greymouth on the black desert moon of Monorik 6. What the bounty hunter had said was that an ore freighter was missing. But the trio found more than that.

According to the administrator, Dack Dontin, they had been requesting help for some time. Not only have shipments gone missing, so have several of his miners working the deep mines.

After gathering supplies, they descended into the depths of the mines. Beyond a sealed mine shaft, a strange swarm of energy absorbing beetles, they locate a concealed door. That covered the true find: a hidden base with one of the Nightsister clan’s Mantis class raider ships.

Now, hidden at the mouth of a tunnel leading down to the base, Aerena, So’zen and Davish watch while armed and armoed figures load cargo aboard the raider light transport. Crates of supplies, parts, minerals, and cages with slaves.

Meanwhile, half a system away, Danar, Vanya, and Zaye had traveled to Port Nevermore to look into a problem with the Collector’s warehouse. The Collector himself is away, gone to Mechis II, leaving Ragnar Syndicate to guard the warehouse.

They failed, a fact that became clear to the group when they arrived. Door locks sliced open, explosive traps had been left to catch the unwary. Worse, the Collector’s items were missing save for the Sith trap. Around the entire warehouse lay the dead bodies of Bloodsmith pirates, all killed much like the Crimson Knights had been.

The spherical Sith prison of Darth Vondromas was cracked and empty. Only a taunting – even hard to believe – message was left behind for Vanya, Danar and Zaye. The Sith lord advised the group to chase him and he might tell them what was going on.

Taking another path, the group looked for tracks on their own. Leading them to a disturbed part of the sand behind the warehouse along with a hidden signal device. But before they could find more, they have a strange feeling move across them.

Port Nevermore was silent. Even the wind stilled as they realize they had not heard any nearby sounds. Not even the wind between the buildings.

And then the ground opened its maw to eat them.

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