3.04: Showdown at Home – The Confessional
DS Day 276-290
The Captain fought it, but the Majjvara would have nothing of it. The Rodian had to face his fate. Meanwhile, the rest of the crew was given free reign of the city. However, all wanted to watch this transpire; a moment of truth for the suspicious Rodian. Gorak was finally facing up to his crimes.
The Rodian stood before the Queen flanked by a pair of Night Terrors. He was unarmed.
“Mr. Gorak, how do you explain you actions?”
“Business and survival, ma’am. Simple as that.”
“In his defense, may I…” The Captain proceeded. Hadn’t we done this before? she thought. The Captain told the “Gorak story” from her perspective, leaving out many of the details that might offend the Majjvara or condemn Gorak. Once she was done, the Majvara nodded, and spoke.
“This accounting is quite evident in the report from Gunthar. It is apparent that this creature is attempting to redeem himself, But has he?”
Dajus was next, presenting her side of the story. Gorak was quite nervous with this, considering what had just happened on the ship. Him betraying her, however, may have been more of a blessing than a curse.
“Gorak may have been a slaver, but you can teach an old Bantha new tricks…” Gorak resented the use of that phrase. Dajus, despite her occasional jab, and snide comment aimed at him, gave quite a redeeming testimony.
“But Ms. Dajus, you hold secrets of your own.”
This took them all off guard. She had faced her last accusation, prompted by Gorak’s betrayal, with minimal truth. Remembering that Gunthar seemed to have an empathic ability to tell a lie, Dajus was driven to explain herself again, and more in depth.
“I was Sarne’s lover, yes, and Sarne’s agent…” She continued to explain her duties and why she was with the Farstar now. She tried to make it clear that she had no ties to Sarne any longer. Despite Gorak’s betrayal, something drove Dajus to defend his position. In doing that, however, she also supported her own.
The Majjvara contemplated all that she had heard, not understanding the concepts of secrets and privacy. She thought that the release of all this information would make the Farstar crew understand the Yvarema better. It was quite apparent that the Yvarema were a part of a advanced hive-mind, in which no creature attached to it had any privacy or secret.
“Gorak, you have proven to many that you worked hard to change your ways, and redeem yourself of your past deeds. However, there is one not of the Yvarema that demands more than just simple forgiveness. She demands justice. Because we can not interfere with her ways, she has asked us to allow a contest to determine guilt.”
A six-legged-centaurian form trotted out from an unseen door way in the Majjvara’s chamber. Qesya Vth’Naar growled at the site of Gorak but held her ground, obviously honoring a promise she made with the Majjvara.
“Qesya claims that Gorak surgically removed her voice box in order to cover up his secret past, then sold her into slavery. Qesya was then freed by the Aing Tii monks, after spending some time in a Qektoth slave labor camp. The monks were about to repair her throat. We honor her request, and ask you to as well. She has asked that a battle between her and the Rodian take place five days from today, in the arena. She has worked diligently to construct an arena for this battle ever since she arrived here.”
Despite all the captain’s protests, along with several of the crew, including surprisingly Gunthar, there was no changing the Majjvara’s mind or Qesya’s. The Battle was to take place.
Gorak had five days to train and prepare himself for the fight. He was unsure of his chances, but confident in some way, he would survive. He made the decision early that if he as a changed Rodian, he would not run. The Gorak of old would figure a way to slither out. He no longer slithered, but faced his challenges head on. Slithering was for worms like Chuborro. However, he could see the hunger for blood in the Sludir’s eyes.
Bifzik could here the faint whisper of voices coming from the Qek nanite-network. Slowly but surely, the Qek-nanites were coming back on-line, tapping into another branch of the Qek “hive-mind”. The last-time they did this, they patched into a nearby branch of Qek who were plotting against someone’s “Queen”. This was obviously in reference to the Majjvara. Through interacting with the Yvarema, Bifzik was able to learn that the Majjvara was aware of some kind of outpost set up several hundred kilometers from the palace city. It was the Qektoth, who were here to study the Yvarema. They only made an aggressive move when the Yvarema scouts came too close.
This was apparently changing rapidly. The Qek now were ready to make an assault on the palace. However, the sad fact was, despite all the wondrous levels of the Yvarema caste society and the numerous types of Yvarema there were in each Caste, they had no qualifying warriors. They had some security types, but none able to fight in an intense battle, especially one with the Qek.
Bifzik had a report to prepare.
The arena was rudimentary. Weapons were piled up on racks. It was apparent that she paid more attention to the construction of the weapons than to the construction of the arena. All were finely crafted, both sets equally deadly. Her honor drove her to ensure both sides had an equal chance.
But most new that one side had the advantage. The Sludir was a former gladiator, while Gorak preferred ranged combat. Gorak even chose to use his whip over any of the finely created weapons available to him. Qesya only growled and laughed. Hungrily, she hoisted a polearm.
The air was tense, mist flowing from surrounding geysers like ghostly spectators, adding to the already crowded dais of on-lookers. Many of the Farstar crew were present, as were many Yvarema. The Majjvara watched through her telepathic link to her scouts.
Adrimetrum looked on as well. She was amazed at the sudden appearance of the Sludir gladiator. She had been written-off as another AWOL, and probably would have ended up with a small bounty on her head courtesy of the New Republic Military. So here she is, revealing the true nature of her disappearance. However, there was something distinctly different about her. She was certain that it was Qesya, but she looked different… heavier and sickly. She looked like she was on her last legs… and for a Sludir, that was saying something.
Gunthar noticed this too, and when he got to talk with her, his senses told him there was something more to her now, something new. And it was something that he could not heal, because it wasn’t anything wrong with her.
The fight started with the Sludir stumbling, with an over-zealous attack at the Rodian’s head. If the blow would have landed, it would have been over. Gorak lunged with his whip, the freeze-effect of it stunning Qesya. Gorak was about to get in a second blow with the whip before she landed a devestating blow to Gorak’s face with her fist. Normally, the blow would have killed the Rodian, however, this one semed weak. The Sludir fell over, breathing heavy, in convulsions.
Seedar was at her side, with analysis scanner sweeping. “Her hormone levels are completely off the scale. … ” she gasped… “She’s pregnant… and has been a VERY long time…” She explained the Sludir ability to put their young in stasis when they need to, especially in time of crisis. Qesya was apparently so obsessed with getting revenge, she convinced her system that is was a time of life-threatening crisis. And now it was… she waited so long, the birth might kill her, and the baby.
Gorak was regaining consciousness as Slave dragged him away. He saw Qesya hunched over, convulsing and could only mumble “Should have stayed in slavery…”
After hours of surgery, Qesya died, but the child was saved. Gunthar volunteered to take care and raise it. Majjvara was pleased at this.
The Captain recieved Bifzik’s report after the surgery. She immediately mobilized the crew. They were in for a fight.