Episode 44 :: Posting the Top 3 Stories and MORE!

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Alan
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Episode 44 :: Posting the Top 3 Stories and MORE!

Post by Alan » 07 Aug 2011, 23:18

Winner:

Title: The Balmorran Scoundrel

Jane Bennett’s feet made soft crunching noises as she picked her
way through the maze of debris that covered the streets of Bin Prime,
the capital city of Balmorra. On the horizon one of the factory worlds
many foundries, standing in stark contrast to the worlds seemingly
endless rolling plains, belched thick black smoke into the sky. The
soot and great gouts of flame that made up the smoke obscured the
stars casting an eerie red pallor over the landscape.
Jane rounded a street corner; her sudden presence sending a group
of metal parasites scampering for cover, Jane paid them no mind. At
one time, in her childhood, she had been afraid of the creatures. That
was before she knew the kind of world she had been born to. The real
monsters on Balmorra didn’t skulk in the streets feasting on
scaffolding.
Shaking herself out of her reverie Jane glanced up at a nearby
office building. Somewhere up there, she knew, was her partner, a
Verpine by the name of Krik’zesh. A faint smile played across Jane’s
face as an image of Krik drifted through her mind, the bulky armour
and massive sniper rifle standing in sharp contrast against her
friend’s spindly physique. Many people had underestimated Krik over
the years because of his somewhat comical appearance, just as many
quickly regretted it.
Reaching up Jane switched on the ear mounted com she was wearing.
“See anything yet?” she said, her voice barely above a whisper.
“Affirmative miss Bennett” came the reply, “A sith patrol is moving
in your direction on the street just ahead. I recommend you take cover
quickly.”
“Roger that Krik, radio silence from here on out.”
“Understood.”
Glancing around as she switched her com back off Jane spotted the
burned out hulk of a public transit speeder. “That’ll do nicely” she
whispered to herself. Quickly she made her way over to the vehicle
and, grabbing what remained of its access stairwells handrail, climbed
inside. Jane scowled when she spotted the skeleton of the driver,
bleached stark white from its time in the sun. One more innocent life
claimed in the name of the sith’s brutal, senseless conquest.
The harsh squeal of bending metal brought Jane back to her senses.
Looking down she saw the rail she had been holding onto was bent
nearly in two. Cursing her foolishness she let go of the rail, her
gaze lingering for a moment on the mandalorian crushgaunt she wore on
her left hand. Her expression softened a bit when she saw it. Her
father a given it to her two years ago when he retired from the
republic military. It had, in turn, been given to him as a trophy by
an enemy unit commander during the mandalorian blockades a few years
before that as a sign of respect. “Soon” she whispered idly flexing
her hand, “soon you’ll feel the neck of A sith dog in your grasp.”
With that Jane drew her blaster and settled down to wait.
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Alan
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Re: Episode 44 :: Posting the Top 3 Stories and MORE!

Post by Alan » 07 Aug 2011, 23:19

Second Place:

Title: "Headhunter"

Heavy steps ground into the dirt, weighted footfalls leaving distinct
impressions in the dry arena floor. The thudding was an announcement, a
declaration that anyone who bothered getting in the massive armored figure’s
way would soon feel that force against their skull as they were ground into
dust. All it took was the sight of the armored behemoth and roars broke the
deathly silence. Here was their hero, their Champion, the one they came to
see slaughter soul after soul week after week in the same monotonous
spectacle of violence and gore. He was a monstrosity forged from the blood
that soaked the Geonosian sand or so it seemed, the one who stood silently
waiting for his emergence through that tunnel of horrors wasn’t.

There were no words as the pale woman’s icy eyes locked on the man’s visor.
The Rattataki appeared more dead than alive, her very appearance scattered
with scars more closely resembling a corpse than a living being. Her people
were born into conflict, she thrived from it, and each mark on her skin let
that be known. She did not need to hear the hiss of the crowd when the
announcer spoke her name to know they hated her. She was here to clash with
their Champion, their misperceived hero; of course they wanted nothing more
than to see her entrails. She wasn’t here for them.

The two gladiators circled like two refined dancers in tune with a
Coruscanti waltz. Each of their weapons poised and ready, blades of course
given when blood brought crowds blasters just wouldn’t do.

A yell rang out as she broke the cycle. The boom of the crowd followed
deafening the combatants when their hero’s sword blocked her first strike.
Another howl reverberated through the stands at the sight of the Champion
sweeping his weapon towards her arm. The strike clipped the bald woman’s
bicep, the blood trickling towards the sand brought a ripple of jeers from
above. The dance continued with each scoring hits, a tiring tango where only
one would walk away. Hush fell over the arena when a blade rose for the
final swing.

Thunk.

The sight of a sunken eyes and contorted lips met the astute gaze of the man
behind the desk. His eyes widened noting the distinctive lack of a body
accompanying the head and the face of the woman who plunked the trophy down
on his formerly pristine workspace. There were still flecks of Force only
knew what on her chalk white skin. The Rattataki wasted no time getting to
the point. “Lyric Almar known as ‘Unstoppable Ulric’.”

“Where was he?” The man’s boss had been waiting for ages for someone to
collect the price on the former hunter’s head.

“Geonosis, hiding beneath a helmet and his crowds.” The contempt in her tone
was explicitly evident as was the snarl across her lips. Those who fought
only ones perceived as weak were worthy of her ire.

“Well, I believe you might have earned yourself a more permanent position in
our ‘upstanding’ organization Miss…”

“Ajiryo.”
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Alan
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Re: Episode 44 :: Posting the Top 3 Stories and MORE!

Post by Alan » 07 Aug 2011, 23:20

Third Place:

Title: Blackferne

“Take me to my ship.” Jounville Blackferne said to the starport escort droid.
“Can I please have your name?” The droid replied preparing to
check the name against the ship manifests on file.
“Blackferne.” Jounville replied.
“Arillius or Jounville?” The droid asked.
The old man is here of all places? Jounville thought as he lifted
his pack onto the transport cart. “Take me to Arillius Blackferne’s
ship.”
The droid sped the transport cart through the massive Corellian
Starport weaving in and out of traffic and beeping periodically as a
warning to pedestrians.
“We have arrived at your destination.” The droid said stopping by
Hangar 47-D.
“Thanks.” Jounville removed his pack from the transport cart which
sped off to the nearest service desk.
Th Seventh Star sat in the hangar with the ramp down and a few
pallet skiffs lined outside ready to be loaded up. Sunlight shone
through the upper parts of the hangar lighting up the ship in a soft
yellow halo. This was his childhood home. His father Arillius and he
lived on the ship transporting whatever they could to wherever they
could. The galaxy was his playground and this aging freighter was his
home.
“PX7 load that one in cargo hold 2 and that one in hold 4. And
watch the turns this time. I don’t want to spend an afternoon fixing
wall panels.” Arillius growled at the service droid that started
pushing pallet skiffs up the ramp.
“Dad.” Jounville said as he walked up behind the old man wearing
his Havoc Squad uniform and carrying his pack. Arillius stood up
straight and slowly turned around. his face was beaming with happiness
until he caught sight of the soldier uniform. Then he retreated into
his grouchy mood.
“And here I was hoping for just a second you had enough.” Arillius
said looking at Jounville with a disappointed glare.
“Dad the Republic is in peril, we can’t stand by when the threat
is so great.” Jounville said in a plea for understanding. Same fight,
different planet he thought.
“You sound just like your mother.” Arillius shot back.
“You can’t keep hiding from the world. You used to be daring and
take risks. What are you doing now? Transporting soap?” Jounville said
in a rebuking tone.
“That was before I had a family, before I had you, when I was
young and stupid. You don’t know what you are really fighting for.
These empires and republics, they may sound different, but at their
core they are the same. The best choice is to simply not get
involved.” Arillius chided.
“Dad, you taught me many things. You taught me how to fight, and
how to think for myself. The commanders said I am a one in a million
talent. That is why they chose me for Havoc Squad.” Jounville was
about to continue before being interrupted.
“I taught you those things so you could protect yourself, not be
one of their lackeys. Jounville you are too good for them.” Arillius
said in an angry tone that softened at the end. “I love you too much
to lose you.”
“I know dad. And I love you too.” Jounville said as his commlink
started beeping. “I gotta go. I’ll see you around.”
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Alan
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Re: Episode 44 :: Posting the Top 3 Stories and MORE!

Post by Alan » 07 Aug 2011, 23:21

If you submitted a story for the Sign Deceived Contest from episode 44 please feel free to copy/paste your story below for others to read!

Enjoy!

- Alan
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Braio
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Re: Episode 44 :: Posting the Top 3 Stories and MORE!

Post by Braio » 08 Aug 2011, 00:15

Awesome stories guys all around. I see know why Zach, Evan and Alan had such a hard time picking the winner, its a really tough choice, each had its own style, concept and viewpoint. Each of you deserved first place in my books, well done.
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ramrod
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Re: Episode 44 :: Posting the Top 3 Stories and MORE!

Post by ramrod » 08 Aug 2011, 09:10

Good job on the stories.
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