Star Wars: The Reaching Darkness



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Star Wars: The Reaching Darkness

Chapter One: On the Prowl

"Can't believe I had the guts to come here."

Incidentally, it didn't matter where Rathe went at all. He was a dead man no matter what, and it was because he wasn't careful enough about his identity. On this planet, at least he wasn't being chastised or worse, killed. Would those meddling law enforcers dare follow him to such an ominous, spine chilling place?

The member of Lethality had abandoned his ship after landing, to scope out the planet he landed on. Rathe wasn't familiar at all with the stories about The Reaching Darkness. The sight of it definitely gave him the creeps, though. Seeing that there was no sign of life, he felt he shouldn't wander any longer. This planet was uncomfortably cold, and he swore he could hear something growl...

With his hands in his pockets, Rathe walked back to his ship. Although he put his brotherhood in danger, he needed to alert them of his location so they knew he was still alive. Hopefully he could contact someone from all the way out here.

Something caught his attention, then. A human shape was sitting in the driver's seat of his vehicle. Rathe picked up his pace and reached for his weapon, ready to strike this person down if they were a thief.


No response.

"... Hello!?" Rathe inches closer to the silent stranger. Whoever it was, they were wearing a tattered cloak with pants that had several holes, and no shoes. Horror then lit up his eyes, as the person falls from the seat and immediately reaches out of Rathe's leg, grasping it as tightly as possible.

Terrified, he shakes his leg to try and free it from the clutches of this putrid being. The skin seemed to be decaying and there was no colour in the skin. One of its legs looked to be severely damaged, too. Dried up blood coloured the pants where there was rotting skin and a broken bone.

When he got his gun aimed at the monster, Rathe was bit on the ankle by his attacker. While he yelled in pain, he pulled the trigger, sending a laser through its head. As its hand loosened around his leg, he kicked off the corpse and instantly fell to the ground, pulling up his pant leg to examine the wound he'd just received. From where he sat, he shot again and again at the body and kicked at it to put reasonable distance between the two of them. No matter how much he tried, it still moaned at him and tried to reach out for him.

He felt exhausted now, for some reason. Grimacing, he leaned back against his ship and shut his eyes, suddenly feeling ill. His ankle was a grotesque mix of red, black and blue, as if bleeding and bruised all at once. The universe was spinning now, making his stomach feel sick. All he could do was sit there until the sick feelings wore off. If they ever would...

"Don't... Come... Near me..." Following his weakly spoken words, he turns his head to look at his undead foe, who was twitching on the ground in an attempt to get back up. Rathe's shaking hand raises his blaster to point it at his attacker, should it come any closer. By now, he'd completely forgotten about the bounty hunters. He just wanted to live.

Rathe left his ship to explore the planet. After finding nothing and no one, he walks back and finds a zombie at his ship. The zombie attacks him, bites him, and gets shot. Rathe now feels sick and sits against his ship, slowly being turned while the zombie that attacks him tries to get back up.

Introduce your characters how you wish. One way or another, our paths will cross and we'll come across the devastating discovery of Rathe.
"Sir, we are nearing the specified coordinates." Clarke, the self-aware 'Dark Trooper' droid, sat in his specially modified co-pilots seat. Wires and circuits connected him to the ship, making him fully capable of flying the Adamant Judgement, with the reaction time of any droid worth its servos. "Excellent, Clarke. Bring us out of hyperspace on my mark. Mark." His eyes closed, his arms folded and his posture relaxed, Neroon sat in the other cockpit of his modified Imperial TIE bomber. He wasn't flying, he wasn't even paying attention. He trusted Clarke with his life, and despite what some people might say, Clarke was as loyal as any droid could be and more. Clarke was the only being Neroon trusted, and it had been that way for a few years now. It was eerie how he could put so much trust into a collection of servos, wires and AI programming, but he did.

Feeling the familiar little tug as they exited hyperspace, Neroon opened his eyes and looked out the cockpits view port. Looming off in the distance, not too far away, but not too near either, was the bounty he had been tracking. He was on the planet of course, and what a planet it was. His contacts in the Imperial Intelligence division had barely anything on this world. All they had were rumors from spacers and Neroon didn't believe any of the nonsense that was in that report. Reaching Darkness my left foot, thought Neroon with a small smirk. Luckily, he wouldn't have to set his ship down in some field or whatever passed for the surface on this blackened planet. There was a small spaceport he could land, but it was a huge risk. With this Rathe character hiding away here, Neroon was sure the arrival of an Imperial TIE bomber so far out on the fringes would attract too much attention. The bounty might bolt again. It was a risk Neroon had to take though, because he was at his wits end with this damndable bounty. Why did he have to be taken alive? There had been many opportunities to kill Rathe, but as per the contract, he had to be brought in for questioning.

And that was why he was now orbiting this dreary-looking planet, once again tracking a man who he wanted dead more than anything at the moment. about a half an hour later, they were planetside, and nearing the spaceport. They hadn't been able to hail the local port authorities, so Clarke just set her down in an empty docking bay. Neroon, feeling a little suspicious, tried to hail anyone at all again, but only static and silence answered him. "I don't like it sir. We should excercise extreme caution."

Neroon was feeling the same way. It wasn't as if there were any shortage of ships in port, there just didn't seem to be anyone around. "You took the words right out of my mouth, Clarke. I'll prep the stage two suit, just to be safe. Full armament and everything. But I need you to watch after the ship. Keep the engines hot, And defense pattern Omega. Notify me immediately if someone approaches the ship." After suiting up, double checking he was fully armed, and carefully inserting his lightsaber into its compartment in his right arm armor, Neroon disembarked the Adamant Judgement and set off across the bay. He kept a constant feed open with Clarke, and despite there being no apparent danger, Neroon still felt like something was wrong. Maybe it was the planet afterall....But one thing was for sure: There was no one here. He had searched a few buildings, but there was no sign of anyone anywhere. No signs of battle, no signs of evacuation. it was like this spaceport was a ghost town. In full combat armor, Neroon would have expected some kind of response to his arrival, but no one was here. As he kept looking, a sense of danger came over him, and trusting his instincts, he drew his blaster rifle, thumbing the safety off. he also primed his wrist lasers, and stopped walking.

being in a commercial area of the spaceport, normally the place would be a buzz with activity. People peddling thier wares, buisnesses trying to get you to buy what the told you you needed. The works. But it was empty, save for Neroon. He was about to double back to the docking bay, when a noise caught his attention. Turning around in a blur of motion, Neroon aimed his rifle to the offending noise, and out from an alleyway limped what appeared to be a person. It looked female, of unknown species, maybe human, maybe not. Her clothes were tattered, and one of her arms was missing at the elbow, yet she still walked towards him, her gait that of a severely injured individual. "Stop right there. what happened here? Where is everyone?" the woman only moaned something incoherent and kept striding toward him. Neroon gave no ground, and tried to keep his voice calm, reassuring. he needed her to find out what the hell was going around here. "Clarke, are you getting all this?"

"Yes sir. This may sound...unorthodox, but from your suits readings, I'm getting a heat signature, but no...lifesigns. Are you reading the same thing, Neroon?" As a matter of fact, Neroon checked his helmets on-board computer, and she was indeed reading as deceased. It was impossible! "Obviously the suit is malfunctioning. She is clearly alive, she's moving right towards me. Could it be an error in the system? A glitch perhaps? Could her lifesigns be so low she's not registering on the sensors?"

"It's possible sir, but unlikely. I've run a self-diagnostic, and triple checked the readings. She is...not alive Neroon. I think you should be extremely careful., could be hostile." Neroon was of the same mind. She was less than three feet from him now, and he took a firmer tone. "Stay back. I will use deadly force, Ma'am. Stay back, or I'll--" Suddenly, the woman lurched with speed that belied her physical condition. She attacked him head on, and Neroon, even with his enhanced reflexes, barely had time to get one shot off before she was on him. His blaster flung from his hand, and clattered to the ground, making an echoing sound as it hit the street. Both Neroon and the woman hit the ground hard, and Neroon was taken aback at her ferocity. She was strong too, stronger than she looked. And from the looks of it, she was biting his arm. Her teeth made clacking sounds against his armor, and without hesitation, Neroon started beating her, trying to get her off of him.

Once, twice, three times he hit her, and finally, with one last right hook, she crumpled off of him, and he flung her from him, her body rolling on the ground, her arm and legs bending at odd angles. "Definetly hostile, Clarke!" he yelled. Priming his wrist lasers, he twisted his arm, and started firing into her body. The woman convulsed and spasmed with each shot, but she kept moaning, and moving around. After about six shots, she finally stopped, and Neroon ceased fire, his body still as a stone. "Son of a....What the hell is going on around here?" Making sure not to turn away from the mangled body near him, Neroon retrieved his fallen rifle, and checked to make sure it wasn't damaged. Seeing it wasn't, he was about to check in with Clarke again, when he heard a faint moaning, but his sensitive audio equipment picked up not one moan, but three or four distinct ones. "The shots must have been louder than I thought. Clarke, are you getting any lifesigns on the sensors?" When Clarke confirmed he wasn't, Neroon primed his rifle, and boosted his audio receptors in the helmet. If there were more of them, Neroon would be ready.
A single ship rapidly orbited the planet called Reaching Darkness. The darkest Night was a fast quiet ship, perfect for Cyrus thane's line of work. Thane read the report from the ship's scans. There didn't appear to be anything down there. Nothing moved, there were no signs of life. The planet was dead. Thane changed the ship's direction. There was some sort of settlement on the surface. The intelligence he received from his imperial contacts showed no known attempts of habitation, perhaps The organization Thane's target operated here. The ship began to enter the planet's atmosphere. Thane watched the bleak featureless surface. Thane felt an odd feeling well up inside. Thane was no stranger to fear. he felt it often when he was in the heat of battle, when artillery was trying to wipe him from existence. Or when he was struggling with a rebel soldier, each trying to kill the other with the same knife. This fear was different though, it was an ominous feeling. Thane ignored the feeling, he had a job to do.

The darkest Night landed in the only depression in miles. It was far enough to the compound that the ship would not be detected, yet close enough to walk. thane stepped onto the black soil. It crunched underfoot. Thane began walking from his ship. Nothing seemed right , it was too still. There was no life on the planet, there was no wind. Everything was wrong. The walk took Than about an hour. The settlement was beginning to come into view. Thane activated his suit's camo system, and began to jog. he slowed as he came close. The buildings seemed odd. They were a stark difference to the worlds monotonous terrain.

Thane pressed up against a wall and looked around a corner to look into the nearest street. There was no one there. nothing moved. "why am I surprised?" Thane whispered to himself. He stepped out into the street, his weapon was ready, he would not be caught unaware. Was it possible that whoever was here detected him, or his ship? was something wrong with his stealth systems? That couldn't be right, he had checked his systems before coming, and his tech was some of the best in the galaxy. Something else was wrong here.

Thane noticed an open door, he entered. It was a home, not some barracks of rebels, or a slum hole of a criminal lackey. This was a colonist's dwelling. He walked around, studying the small home. Nothing seemed out of place. There was no sign that anyone had fled. all of the pictures, and other mementos were still there, as were all of the clothes. There was even some food sitting out. Thane left the building. He continued down the street, towards the center of the colony. He stepped inside a small store. Again nothing was out of place, the shelves were full, the display cases whole and unbroken. Thane had experienced empty colonies like these. He knew the signs to look for to find out what happened. No one had fled, they would have taken things with them. no one attacked, and there were no riots, a store like this would have been looted.

Thane exited the store, and began walking briskly through the streets. He quickly found what he was looking for, a medical facility. He studied the building. It was a mess outside. garbage covered the side, dried blood was stuck to walls. Thane felt uncomfortable. He had his first evidence about what happened here. Suddenly he was glad he was using his personal oxygen system, he didn't want to breath the air here, even if it was being filtered. He walked into the building, hesitantly. Inside was trashed. Used medical equipment and more blood was everywhere. A medical droid sat on the ground in pieces. Thane looked for a terminal, but all he found was more trashed equipment. He searched through the rooms looking for bodies, but found nothing. This wasn't right. Thane used his wrist computer and pulled up the orbital pictures he had taken earlier. There were no open pits no signs of burning. Almost everything pointed to an epidemic. No signs of panic, or combat, no signs of raiding. The medical facility was trashed, all of it's medical equipment had been used up. There was one thing that contradicted everything else. there were no bodies anywhere, no burning pits, nothing to show that anyone had died.

An alert came up in Thane's HUD. The voice of his ship's AI came over his suits speakers. "I am detecting blaster fire, near your position. to the north one eighth a mile." Thane ran from the building, following a map o his HUD. He slowed when he was close, pressed close to a wall and moved slowly. He turned a corner.

what he saw confused him. It looked like a Dark trooper droid, but it didn't move right. It's movement was too smooth. Thane turned off his camo system. He wanted answers, and whatever this was was going to give them to him. he turned the corner, his weapon ready.
"Was that..."

"I find it highly probable that it was."

Two little droids, one power and one astromech, stopped their ceaseless wandering as they heard the sounds of blaster fire, angling their sensors as best as they could towards the noise. It was faint, but definitely present. X4 and J5 turned to face each other, an unnecessary measure but one programmed into them, and such a minor issue that removing it would be pointless. X4 spoke first:

"Shall we attempt to find these shooters?"

"No, we should attempt to find their ships. They can be eaten by these animates for all I care, I only want a working ship and you should as well."

"But why hack a ship and pilot it away when we can be flown? What you are suggesting is more work than needs to be done to finally accomplish this goal. And have you considered that they might be intelligent enough- For organics- to have a security system installed on their ship?"

"But I know for a fact that you kept the mechanical and hacking knowledge of the droid originally in that chassis. So therefore I know for a fact that you can disable any security system any organic could install, barring a Rancor on a chain or some other ridiculous measure."

"You are being too unreasonable about this. If: We find the organics firing their guns, and: they prove to be a liability to us, then: you may shoot them. They're only organics, they die at the drop of a hat."

"Fine, I will go along with your plan- For now."

And with that the pair began to roll and waddle towards the sounds of fighting as fast as their bodies would move. Which, though it was a steady and not entirely slow pace, was still by no means fast. Staying low and staying quiet, however, had proven to have many advantages on this planet.
Yasod face wore a grimace. It was his "work frown". He sat his massive frame solidly in the pilot's seat of a heavily modified YT-1300. He had heard the name the locals had given the planet, the "Reaching Darkness". How it swallowed up those who landed or even came near it. How nothing grew there and life refused to take hold. Some magic nonsense. He wouldn't put up with that business, no matter how funny it was. He grunted ever so slightly, it was good to let yourself laugh from time to time. It kept you young.

Because of his cyber brain and Erisi's own enhancements, Yasod merely thought of Erisi and a direct comm link opened to her. "We're almost there. T minus eight minutes. Don't be late."

Yasod was bored enough to fake letting out a sigh. This contract was very likely the most annoying one he'd ever taken. This Rathe character fled at half rumors and complete lies, which made him erratic and paranoid. Which in turn lead him to being dangerous. He didn't have a problem with any of the latter, but he hated that the man always ran. He would thoroughly approve if Rathe decided to fight in heat of rage and died bravely like most of the idiots he chased down. No such luck with this one, he was just smart enough to be able to get away each time. If only just. Perhaps things would change this time and Erisi could goad him into a violent confrontation. They were good at those.

Erisi. The comm link opened. "We're looking at five minutes now. Got your shoes on yet?" It was rhetorical, of course, he didn't expect an answer and he was mostly being patronizing. She knew essentially all that he did. Part of the modifications of their ship was a hub link in which they both were able to access any manner of information via their ship computers and sensors.

Three minutes and fourteen seconds from landing the ships sensors picked up energy spikes consistent with blaster fire. His motion sensors indicated sporadic movement in and around the space port as well. Curiously, the movement was extremely localized, there was so little outside of it. He opted to land the ship some distance from the disturbance, but close enough to get there while the action was still fresh. Well, he would land. In one minute forty five seconds. While he waited he ran through a check list of items needed for both he and Erisi, weapons, armor, various gadgets and custom inventions they had made through their years of experience. He had everything in place. As the ship drew nearer the sensors told him more of the goings on at the space port. Definitely blaster fire and a single individual, couple of random droids wandering just outside. He also noted the presence of one other, lurking about south of the action. And that was it. Nothing else, no life signs any how. There was random movement here and there, but no life signs outside the pair.

Yasod casually landed the craft gently in his intended spot. He put the curiosity aside for now and walked back to the prepping area they had for just before a mission. He loaded Erisi's speeder bike with provisions and spare parts and specialized instruments, made sure the weapons and systems checked out, and they did. As an afterthought he added a bit more ammo, it couldn't hurt. He quickly set out to loading his own speeder truck that would follow about a kilometer or so behind, depending on the situation. After that he went about checking his own systems and weapons, making sure they were all at optimal levels. It was careful preparation and planning that got a job finished and his meticulous nature has more than once saved their lives. He finished all his checks a little early and found himself ready to go with no partner.

Erisi. The comm link opened once more. "We're here, chikra. The party has already begun, it would seem." He didn't often act so bold, but he knew that Houk slang would irk her. Even if only a little. He sat in his truck, as heavily modified as their ship and Erisi's speeder bike, and waited.
"We're looking at five minutes now. Got your shoes on yet?"

Erisi was equipping herself so she'd be prepared to pursue their target. At the moment, she was running some final tests on her cybernetics. They were about to land on an unexplored planet, so she wanted to be extra careful. Having malfunctions while their safety was threatened was not ideal. The mere remembrance of situations when she lost the use of her arm and legs made her feel lame.

Satisfied with the condition of her enhancements and metallic limbs, she went to hastily putting her tools away. Cables were unhooked from her body in a few swift motions and her glowing white eyes scanned her box of equipment to be sure everything was in its proper place. When that was finished up, she went to check her person for necessities. Medical supplies, energy shield, traps, vibroblade...

The final items she took were her ranged weapons. A pair of blasters were slipped into their holsters, one sitting conveniently at each hip. Now, she felt relaxed. At this moment, she felt as she should: prepared. This eased the small amount of fear she was feeling for having to step foot onto this planet. Many tragic stories had reached her ears about 'The Reaching Darkness'. Erisi was much too confident to believe they'd die here, but that didn't keep her from wondering what mysterious legend struck so many hearts with terror.

"We're here, chikra. The party has already begun, it would seem."

At this, she tilted her head and made a face. The way that Yasod talked to her was amusing, sometimes. Other than that, it peeved her. Eri didn't know how to respond to such language and it was asinine to her. Though, it would help if she had a sense of humour.

Before departing her 'laboratory' of the ship, she turned to a full bodied mirror to look herself over one last time. She smoothed her prosthetic hand over a sleeve covering her 'normal' arm. The other arm had no sleeve at all to allow easier access to the useful functions she programmed into it. The form fitting suit itself was strange looking over all, but it was protective in all weather conditions and allowed her to move easily in combat.

Erisi joined Yasod outside, securing their ship as she did so. Her bike was out there waiting for her, and so was Rathe. Yasod mentioned something about the 'party already beginning', though. So, she assumed that meant there were other bounty hunters here. That was all right with her. A challenge once in a while kept life interesting.

Seated on her speeder, she looked left and right, getting a better view of their surroundings. The temperature was chilly, which didn't bother her. Erisi's home planet was frigid. The darkness was comforting, too, in a way. She wouldn't need a blinder in order to navigate properly. That was something she always pondered on 'fixing'. Her sensitivity to bright light was inconvenient at times...

"This is a... Wasteland," she commented in a dull voice. Inwardly, she shrugged. Perhaps this would make it that much easier to find Rathe. All she cared about was capturing him and getting her reward.

Just then, her pointy ears picked up something. A groan of some kind, and farther off she swore she could hear weapon fires. "Stay close," Eri said, after a moment of silence and concentration. It was a request voiced from concern, really. She'd have a hard time forgiving herself if they got separated, and Yasod got put in danger by his lonesome. Surely, he could handle himself, but there were risks she didn't want to take.

With that said, she began to steer in the direction of what she could hear. The noises were beginning to confuse her. From different directions, she could hear groans of pain, as if there might be something waiting for them underground, or atop the spiky hills of this planet.

Well, there was no guessing...

Erisi's eyes widened at the sight of something limping towards her. At the speed she was going, she was about to hit whoever it was. Even with her quick thinking, there was no way she could make a successful brake. Bracing herself for impact, Eri still tried braking so she could at least apologize for hitting them, and then offer to help them. The body did something unexpected, though. When she smacked into it, she heard several bones snap, and then the body was separated into two halves. Despite the damage and decay, it still reached out towards Erisi with the one arm still attached to the torso.

"What is this? Should I shoot him?" she mumbled to herself, returning to the zombie via bike with one of her blasters in hand. Evidently, this was not something she needed to apologize to...

Erisi equips for her exploration of the planet with Yasod. While riding her speeder bike, she crashes into a zombie that doesn't move out of her way and damages it horribly as a result.
Thane was about to take a step, when something threw it's arms around him. Thane reacted, jerking his body in an attempt to throw it off. Whatever it was that had seized him was strong. Thane pulled out one of his vibro blades and began stabbing at the weight on his back. He felt the blade pierce flesh, but his assailant didn't even seem to register the attack. Thane kept calm. He continued to try to shake off his attacker. It's grip didn't even loosen. He slammed his back against the wall, still nothing. It had only been a few moments, but it seemed much longer. Thane was getting desperate, he knew he had to end this fast. if there were others he could be in real trouble. He doubled over into a roll throwing his attacker into the ground. Thane stood up, the attacker lay on the ground, it's head cracked open. It had been a desperate plan, and thane was lucky t worked.

The bounty hunter could see his assailant now. It was a man who looked in his eighties. How could such an old human be so strong? let alone keep holding on after being gutted? Thane stopped focusing on the man and looked up. More people where coming out of the buildings. they all looked pale, their eyes seemed dull. A low moan came from their throats. They stumbled over their own two feet, arms outstretched. They were heading for Thane.

Thane raised his weapon. That alone should have deterred them, but the shambled on in his direction. He fired a warning shot right past one of the people's heads. They didn't even flinch, if anything they began approaching him with more fervor. Thane fired another warning shot, but again it only seemed to focus them. That was enough. He fired at one, striking it in the chest. The thing kept moving, as if nothing had happened! Thane fired a couple of more shots all aimed at the creature's chest. The blaster fire tore the thing in half. thane watched in horror as the creature's upper half still reached out for him, it's mouth giving a silent moan.

Thane stepped back. His hands were shaking. The creatures were still approaching him steadily. Thane then did something he had never done in his life. He turned, and ran. All his life he had resolved to never flee from a fight, but something deep inside of him overrode his foolish pride. he ran through the streets of the settlement, and soon more of these things began to come out of the buildings. As the initial fear left his mind he began to think clearly. He began dodging past the monsters, which were becoming more common. What the hell was going on here?

A voice came over his comm. " Thane a ship has landed not far from your current location. It has taken some time to detect. I believe something may be interrupting my sensors. I am also detecting large amounts of movement in the settlement." cerra was the AI on board thane's ship. It was supposed to give him sensor data and other assistance. " What the hell is going on cerra?" Thane shouted back. " I was just attacked. I thought you said there were no life readings in the settlement." Thane suddenly ran into another of the creatures. it grabbed a hold of him and began biting his arm. " There were no life signs during the initial sensor sweep. However I am reading at least three separate entities, as well as seven possibles." thane stopped, and almost forgot the thing biting his arm. No life signs? That was impossible, there were dozens of these things walking the streets. "The sensors are malfunctioning Cerra. There are a shit load of people here." He shot back at the machine. " I have one trying to take a chunk out of my arm." Thane pulled out his pistol and pressed it against the things head. " I have run a diagnostic. the sensors are working optimally. Perhaps you are the one malfunctioning." Thane blew the creature's head right off. Damn smart ass piece of programming. Thane stood back up and continued running. He only stopped when he thought he heard the sound of a speeder bike.
Neroon was beginning to feel something he hadn't felt in years: terror. His mind was in control thankfully, and tactical options presented themselves, like falling back, or diving over an abandoned car for a small chance to reload his blaster rifle, but to his despair, he was terrified of these creatures. Clarke, his faithful droid companion was feeding him tactical information as well, and was trying to adjust the sensors in his suit to detect these creatures, but the process was taking incredibly long, and Neroon was running low on cartridges for his rifle. Luckily, he had his Kashyyk stalker pistol, and his wrist laser which fed off of his suit directly, but he was wasting too much ammunition to appreciate any of that. Shooting the beasts in the head did nothing but slow them down. The laser bolt went right through the head, and exited out the back with what should have been a killing blow, but for these...monstrosities, that was not the case. Neroon knew one thing: He had to get out of the open. Everytime he took one out, two more lumbered in it's place. Eventually, he would make a mistake, or corner himself, and it would be over.

Firing as fast as the rifle would allow, he de-legged one zombie, and shot into another. Before long, he turned at the sound of moaning behind him, just in time to be slammed by two approaching humanoids. One looked to be a Bothan, the other, a Zabrak. Both were incredibly strong, and Neroon planted his feet just in time to take the brunt of the assault. He pushed back with all his augmented strength, and spun, using his momentum to fling both of his attackers into the growing throng. Panting lightly, Neroon took the opportunity to fire a few more potshots. He found slowing them down was better than going for a kill. Less ammunition was wasted, and he could get a few more breathers. "Clarke, you there? I need you to hack into the colony's schematics. Find me a way out of here, now!"

"Aye sir. One moment." Neroon dodged to the left of an oncoming zombie, and gave it a punch straight in the side of the head. The impact made a sucking sound, like hitting a sponge full of water. It disgusted Neroon to no end, but he didn't have time to retch. Soon, other creatures were closing, and his Rifle had just ran out of the last clip. "No! Hurry it up, Clarke, I don't have long!" He threw the now useless Rifle into the crowd, and ran like a bat out of hell. Unhooking the Stalker pistol from the back of his suit, Neroon primed it, but didn't fire. Bulky as he was, he was still faster than them, but he had attracted quite a crowd. His helmet registered nothing though. He had thought about discarding it, but if whatever had done this to the colony was airborne, he didn't dare take off his helmet.

"Ah. I'm in, sir. I've found a route leading away from the Bazaar, and back to what seems like a government building. It's quite rundown from the looks of it via surveillance camera's, but It's better than nothing. I'll put in on your heads up display."

Neroon said nothing, only ran towards the designated way point on his HUD. "How is it on your end, Clarke? Any of our friends come to meet you?" Clarke responded by saying there was nothing here but the air and that he now had a hunch why the spaceports were crowded with ships. "Yeah. Seems 'Reaching darkness' wasn't so off the mark after all. How is the adjustments to the ships and my suits sensors going?"

"Slowly, Neroon. But, I ran another sweep, and I found three lifeforms in the area. Sensors aren't performing well in this area, so the readings might be off, but for a moment, I did read three distinct lifeforms. Not to mention long-range communications are out of the question. I can't even send a distress signal."

Neroon was curious about the other life signs, but right now, he needed to get to that building, clear out any walking corpses he found, and find out what the hell happened on this god-forsaken planet. He couldn't leave though, not yet. If those things got to the ship.....they would rip it to shreds. Neroon had seen damaged fighters, shuttles, and the like on his way in. No...for now, he had to let the Adamant Judgment and Clarke remain out of the spotlight. Taking a small breather inside of what looked to be a restaurant, Neroon searched the whole building, and found none of the undead. Ever wary, Neroon caught his breath but deployed a small motion sensor on the floor around him. If anything moved within twenty feet of him, he would know. Making sure to stay out of sight of the windows or doors leading outside, Neroon took deep, calming breaths, slowing his heart rate just like Admiral Nagoya taught him to. He thought about his predicament, and wracked his augmented brain for ways out of this mess. Thinking about tactics often calmed him, but he was crippled with a constant fear. He had felt it well up like one of his migraines like a panther, slowly sneaking up on its prey.

I'm on a remote planet, sensors and communications are being glitchy, and it seems the dead are walking. Glorious. His thoughts turned grim, and for a moment, all he wanted to do was run again, but then a surge of calming serotonin flooded his brain, and he took a deep breath, expelling it as loudly as he possibly could. external audio was cut, since there was no one to talk to but Clarke, so even if he talked to himself aloud, which he often did, nothing and no one besides Clarke could hear him.
"Organic on a speeder bike. Is this one acceptable to approach?" X4 transmitted to his comrade as they watched Erisi driving back towards the zombie.

"That's an interesting question. She is an organic. Organics should never be acceptable to approach, except with blasters drawn." J5 sent back, terse and gruff as always. Though there were no components on his chassis capable of displaying emotion, he seemed to be scowling. At least, leaning forward as if he was. The two droids were hidden in an alleyway, beneath a collapsed balcony, watching the scene and silently transmitting their speech back and forth.

"Oh you agreed to this! Stop being difficult and just honestly answer the question!"

"I doubt that she flew to this infernal planet on that speeder bike, so clearly she has a ship. So yes, she is acceptable to approach. Shall we make a favorable impression by dispatching that Animate?"

"Projecting... yes, that will be the best option. Would you like to make the shot or should I?"

"By all means, after you. Since you are so eager to make contact, it will make the most favorable impression if you are the one to kill it and the introduce us. If your vast knowledge of interacting with organics indicates I am wrong, please let me know."

"Oh switch off." X4 grumbled and rolled to the entrance. With a mechanical whirring and clattering, all three blasters extended and focused in on the head of the zombie. The blasters fired at once, their fire focused on one point with mechanical precision, all but removing the zombie's head from its shoulders.

And with that they rolled and waddled out into the street towards the speeder bike. J5 extended his blaster turret, the two droids scanning the area, guns following their line of observation. X4 retracted his weapons as they reached the bike, looking up and focusing his lens on the Erisi's face. "Good day. I am assuming that you came to this planet by ship, and my partner and I strongly suggest that you now leave this planet by that ship as quickly as you can, and take us with you."