The Arena

Somo, Veshnik, and Titus find themselves on the arid planet of Florrum. The trio had all landed in the same hub on the planets sand and sulfuric surface. They gathered in a bar that was more nightclub than bar and waited for the arrival of Oucae-Ruh, the Irr they had worked with multiple times. He had messaged them claiming to have details for a job, and promising a payday as well. It took little time at all for the Iridonian to show up and, as being of few words, he got straight to the point.

“I have received a bounty offer on a young Twi’lek named Besforek,” he spoke out in his signature deep voice from behind his pointed teeth. “He is blue and he was last seen taking refuge on this planet.”

“Who is the bounty from?” Titus, the annoyingly logical human chimed in.

“The Rebellion,” Oucae answered. “He was a spy for them, who sold secrets to the Empire.”

“How much we talking?” the Cerean known as Somo DeUn interjected.

“The base bounty starts at 360 thousand,” Oucae said, eyeing the group at the table.

“Split four ways?” Titus reaffirmed.

Oucae nodded and the others around the table almost instantly accepted the job. 90k cred is nothing to ignore. When pressed for more information, Oucae admitted he had known except that this bounty was technically off the books, and that if things went south, the Rebellion was prepared to disavow any knowledge of them. They sat around the table for a moment before the lone human at the table, Titus, decided to get himself a drink. Drink in hand, Titus turned and began to press the bartender, as they tend to be the most knowledgeable people around.

“If I were looking for someone, do you think you would know where he is?” Titus asked innocuously.

“Depends,” the barkeep responded hesitantly.

“I’m looking for a blue Twi’lek named Besforek,” Titus said, ignoring the drink in his hand. “Have you seen him?”

“Nope, can’t say that I have,” the bartender responded. “Get a lot of Twi’leks in here, gonna need more than that.”

“He’s younger, maybe 18,” Titus offered.

“Nope, can’t help ya,” the bartender responded.

Titus returned to the table and offered the drink to Somo, who threw it back and immediately began to feel rather good about where he was in life. The foursome sat for a minute in silence, each unsure of what to do next, when the bartender approached the table, the club beginning to fill up.

“Look, I didn’t want to say nothing before with the people all around the bar,” he said leaning over the table. “But the kid ya lookin’ for is in with the Hutt’s. He likes to play Dejarik, so ya might try the Dejarik den downstairs.”

The quatrain stood and walked to the door of the club and out onto the packed corridor beyond. With decisions to be made about which way to go, the four stood in silence, before Oucae decided he had waited long enough, and turned to his left. Somo followed him. The Bothan and the Human went right. Left was the way to go, as the Cerean and Iridonian passed by vendors and booths before reaching a gravlift that took them safely and freely to the floors below, where the Dejarik den was located. The Bothan and the Human however, encountered some Weequay thugs, who demanded a toll for using the gravlift on that end.

The 900 credits handed over for them to use the gravlift, the Human and Bothan rejoined their compatriots outside the Dejarik den and attempted to walk in, before being greeted by someone claiming to be the manager. He asked for 70 credits each for entrance, which was paid by all without much ceremony. Inside they found 13 maybe 14 tables of Dejarik, with a few empty. The blue Twi’lek was nowhere to be seen. The same man who asked for credits for entry now begins to harass the group, asking if they plan to play or if they are some weirdos who just want to watch. Oucae spends little attention on this man, and begins to pace the room, his back and shoulders to the outer wall. Meanwhile, Somo pressed his luck with the den keeper.

“I like to play Dejarik with Twi’leks,” Somo said arrogantly. “They’re easy money. A friend of mine named Besforek said he’d be here. Any chance you’ve seen him?”

“Besforek? Hold on, let me see if I can find him,” the man answered, his tone turning from profit-mongering Dejarik hustler to suspiciously calm, even foreboding

The manager disappeared through a door to the groups right. While he was gone, the Bothan and the Human played a game of Dejarik, and in only a few moves, the Bothan was bested, owing the Human 800 credits in return. As the pair is playing their game, and Somo is waiting for his opponent, Oucae begins to notice that all around the room, games are ending in a rather abrupt and unusual fashion. Soon all the tables are empty, leaving the four companions alone, for a second.

5 Weequay thugs burst into the room and span the room around the edges. The group is surrounded. A furious, but brief fight ensued. Oucae made the first move, bounding toward the nearest thug to him, drawing forth his lightsaber and slashing the thug from hip to opposite shoulder with little effort. As he landed, to his right, Titus used the force and slammed to other thugs into each other, obliterating both of them. Somo drew forth his Vibrosword and swung on a nearby thug, cleaving the thugs arm from his shoulder, the blaster in its hand firing as it hit the ground, the bolt singing Somo’s leg in the process. Another thug turned and took a shot at Titus and missed, destroying the lights, leaving only the eerie red glow of Oucae’s lightsaber to light the room. Through his use of the force, Titus can feel the thugs presence in the dark and hurls him at Oucae’s lightsaber blade. Oucae meets the body midair and cut it in two. Somo finished the last thug, causing him to faint before the room filled with gas and more thugs entered the room.

The foursome awoke in a cell along with the remaining thug that hadn’t been killed, who was still asleep. In the cell with them, was Besforek. The companions are stripped of their weapons. The disoriented “friends” begin to question the blue Twi’lek about where they are. He informs them they are in a facility called The Arena. He says people never come back froom the Arena. Titus, through his use of the Force, kills the Weequay guard and throws open the door. Oucae, through his attunement with the Dark Side of the Force, feels himself drawn to his lightsaber, and leads the group to the left, discovering a crate in which the groups weapons could be found, as well as a bowcaster and a thermal detonator and a handful of medpacks. The group then run through the wrong door, and find themselves in The Arena before thousands of scream spectators. A voice announces that if they survive all three rounds in The Arena, then they earn their freedom.

The first round was 3 Gamoreans. As Oucae and Somo both close the gap with the Gamoreans, weapons drawn, Titus lifts one in the air and attempts to rip his arms off, but instead destroys the pig-man’s armor. The advancing Cerean and Iridonian strike fear into the hearts of the Gamoreans. Oucae then used this moment to strike, cleaving a chunk from his opponent’s side, causing him to drop his axe in the process. As Somo attempts to engage the third Gamorean, he misses and only grazes the Gamoreans back with his virbosword. The first gamorean, with no armor at this point, swings his axe and splits the skin on Oucae’s stomach open. Veshnik, the Bothan, leapt forward and attempted to bite into the Gamoreans neck, but was unable to as the Gamoreans have thick, blubbering hide.

Titus grabs two of the Gamoreans through the Force and slams them into each other, obliterating one, and leaving the other unstable on his feet. Besforek attempted to help at this point and jumped onto the same Gamorean as Vesh, and instead of biting the Gamorean, nearly bit Vesh instead. The kerfuffle of neck sucking causing a commotion to his right Oucae turned and cleaved that Gamorean from balls to brain with his lightsaber, causing the two on his back to fall into the dirt. The final Gamorean met his fate when Somo drove his vibrosword through his back. The Gamorean dropped his axe and smacked Oucae in the face on the way down.

Then the Gundark happened. Somo once again intimidated the beast, causing it to defecate. Veshnik tosses Oucae a medkit, and the Iridonian is now at full health once again. After throwing the medkit to Oucae, Veshnik levels off his blaster and takes a shot at the Gundark and hits one of its eyes, half blinding the creature. Besforek proved once again how worthless as he is as he tried to shoot the Gundark as well, and missed, sending his shot into the stands. Titus, being inexperienced with a lightsaber, ran forward and drew his saber, taking a swing at the beast, but missed. And had it not been for the Force, Titus may have taken the full weight of one of the Gundarks arms as the creature swung out at him. Oucae lept forward, at full health, and as a bowcaster shot impacted the wall behind the creature, the Zabrak took the Gundarks head from its neck, in a clean swing of his saber.

The rancor proved a worthy foe for the group. After many attempts to do damage by the group, it was Somo who struck the first blow. He blasted the Rancor through the paw/hand with the bowcaster and knocked the beast onto its back, leaving Oucae standing staring at its nether-regions, as he had unsuccessfully attempted to hamstring the beast and was under it when it was knocked backward. This proved not great for Oucae as the enraged and wounded rancor stood up and swung at Oucae, as he was the closest, and knocked him through the air, almost 30 feet, rendering him unconscious. With Oucae flying through the air, Titus saw his opportunity and through his manipulation of the Force, he sailed the activated thermal detonator at the rancor, landing it squarely under him. The blast did serious damage to the creature as it took his already wounded arm and part of his jaw clean off. The beast slumped forward as Veshnik took another shot, this time going into the open hole on the side of the rancors face and out the other cheek, causing the beast to cry out in pain and anger.

Somo, for the first time acting outside of his own self-interest, took time to heel Oucae as best he could. It was enough to get Oucae on his feet again, and once on his feet, Oucae used another medpack from the Bothan spy to restore himself almost completely. Vesh took another shot at the rancor and pierced its ear this time. Titus, being resourceful as always, used his abilities with the Force to throw the rancor’s amputated arm into the beast’s side. Besforek, again, fired multiple shots wildly into the crowd. The angry rancor, now immobilized and clinging to life, lifted his great claw hand thing and brought it down squarely on Titus, smashing Titus into the dirt floor of the arena and obliterating Titus’s lightsaber in the process. Oucae, the ever pissed off warrior, vaulted from the rancors hand on the floor and spinning like a Tasmanian Devil laid open the foes throat, and the great beast slumped into the dirt.

As the victors stood in triumph and began to inspect the body of Titus, who they found was not dead, but was wounded and unconscious, an Imperial officer and a handful of storm troopers approached them. It looked as though the officer meant to confiscate their weapons once more, but the sight of the blood-spattered warriors seemed to change his mind. Instead he told them to simply leave as fast as possible. Oucae threw the unconscious Titus onto his back and carried him as they made their way the five miles back to the hub they had originally met up in. As they walk, Somo attempted to fix Titus as much as he could, but failed to bring him back to consciousness. Oucae, the ever-vigilant, suggested that the group should get on his ship and leave as soon as possible. The group agrees and the episode ends with Titus unconscious, but healing, and Somo prepping the ship for take-off as Oucae stepped outside to inspect the exterior of the ship for any tampering.

The Arena

Force and Destiny near the Still Waters DarrCwarr