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Ronin
9 February 2007, 11:21 PM
22nd Regiment:
A Lesson In Betrayal

Kamino, Clone Primary Training Facilities. First Floor.
Jedi Knight Paj Verdana watched the children sat at their desks, eyes riveted to the imbedded screens, absorbing terabyte after terabyte of information. Every child dressed in identical blue jumpsuits. Every child identical.
They paid him no attention as he strode round the cavernous circular chamber, his boot heels clicking on the blue-grey deckplates the only sound aside from an occasional cough or fidget from the children.

Adult clone troopers in full armour and with rifles at port arms were posted in front of doors at opposite sides of the room. Verdana's slow stroll took him past each of the two troopers every three minutes exactly, FS-6196 noted as he stiffened and snapped to attention at the general's approach.
Almost as precise as us now, FS-6196 though. He, better known as Lance, and Verdana had fought together in several battles over the last three years and finally it looked like the war might end: Dooku was dead and Grievous was being hunted down in the Outer Rim.
"General," Lance nodded.
"You needn't do that every time I pass, Lance," Verdana grinned, his arms folded in opposite sleeves. He found this pose kept the troops as relaxed as possible. Whenever they saw his hands leave his voluminous sleeves they generally all stiffened and got ready for orders.
"When this war's over, my friend, I really must take you out for ale," he smiled.
"That would be...nice, sir," Lance replied, "I've occasionally wondered what happens to us when the war ends."
"You get to relax. Take off that armour. Put away that blaster. Have a normal life, I hope," Verdana decided to stop his pacing and stood next to Lance, watching the children. They never stirred, didn't get distracted by or eavesdrop on his conversation with Lance, just kept studying. Their headsets droned on with audio instruction, their individual screens accompanying the monotonous voice with endless images. So like droids, Verdana thought to himself, but they're not. They're human. The sons of the Republic.
Verdana nodded toward the children; "a normal life for them too, I should think."
"Well," Lance ventured hesitantly, "not exactly a normal life. Sir."
He was right. Removed from the tanks ten years ago, Lance had only another twenty years to live. The clone army's rapid maturing also meant rapid aging and a premature death. Verdana realised that the hundred children before him would probably all be dead before he himself was.
"I'm sorry sir, I shouldn't have-"
"No, Lance. I'm sorry," Verdana replied grimly, bowed his head and continued pacing round the room.


The children had moved on to a reaction exercise; styluses in hand they designated simulated targets and objectives on the screens, eliminating holographic enemy while protecting friendlies. Every child moving quickly, precisely, in unison.

Then he felt the atmosphere change. Verdana looked across to Lance. The clone's head was tilted to one side; a habit he had whenever he was receiving a transmission, and around him the background whisper of the children’s headsets had ceased.
"Lance?"

Suddenly Lance and the other trooper were raising their blasters toward him.
"What are you doing?!" Verdana cried out in alarm though he could feel their killer instincts through the Force. Cold, emotionless and overwhelming.

His lightsaber intercepted the first bolts and sent them off into the ceiling but stood at opposite sides of the room the two clones: Lance and his vat-brother Raze, had him in a crossfire. The next blaster bolt he sent back at the firer, catching Raze full in the chest and dropping him to the deck.
But he paid for that momentary focus on a single foe as Lance's shot clipped his thigh and the Jedi staggered.
He turned to confront the remaining trooper. Lance stood lining up his next shot. The way he held his rifle and stood leaning in to take the recoil, side-on to his enemy to reduce his profile: Verdana had seen it countless times over the last three years. But he had never been its target.

Lance fired again. And again. And every bolt Verdana sent into the ceiling or walls. The clone fired at the Jedi's feet, hands, face, everywhere but each shot was met by the knight's laser sword.

And then the trooper lowered his aim from the Jedi. And they were upon him. Small hands grasped his brown robes, his arms, his legs. He cried out in surprise as the young clones came at him but he couldn't bring himself to attack them. Verdana struck at them with the Force, sending a dozen of them flying but they kept coming, swamping him. Small but strong, skilled fingers twisted his lightsaber from his grip while others found his eyes. And finally he collapsed under their weight.
A child sat astride his chest, stylus held overhead in a two-handed grip like a dagger.

"Nooooo!"

Rostek
9 February 2007, 11:26 PM
You sir, are one twisted S.O.B.

Awesome :D

Ronin
10 February 2007, 12:15 AM
I'm glad you liked it :)
I wrote it this morning on the train, originally as a cut-scene for the 22nd's Mission Five (which is going to include Order 66)...but it snowballed a bit ;)
Thanks again go to Johnny Putrid for help and proofreadermanship.

chiefcaptin
10 February 2007, 08:43 AM
Creepy is right. Another great 22nd Regiment story by Ronin. I never thought of that kind of thing when I thought about Order 66. You could come up with thousands of other interesting situations to write about too.

PsychoInfiltrator
10 February 2007, 10:29 AM
So, let's see, we have... almost missions before Order 66, all planned out.

We do about 1 mission/year.

I will be part way through university before I even entertation the thought of shooting Jedi [assuming Dart lives that long.]

In the meantime, Ronin senpai, permission to link to this thread every time some newbie asks me why somebody mentioned you being twisted/dastardly evil/maniacal/creative/scary/terrifying?

Ronin
10 February 2007, 05:04 PM
:D

I was just on the train, thinking about Order 66 and how it's going to happen to the PCs (I'm not going to reveal anything about that, that's top secret, need-to-know info) and wanted to put in some cutscenes...
and we all love the scene with Anakin finding the younglings in the temple in episode 3, right? Well, maybe not "love" but its a really good scene...
so I got the idea for a Jedi stationed on Kamino, in a room full of young clones as Order 66 goes down...and, unlike Jedi kids ;), clone kids know how to fight!

I've been trying and trying to write an early Garloz story for the past month or so, but the harder I try to write it, the more difficult it seems. Whereas something that popped into my head while commuting flowed easily! :)

chiefcaptin
11 February 2007, 02:34 PM
Mabey you should write on the train more often then!

BTW, One Shot was great to. I love the way that Garloz was in the worst possible situation but he manages to get the shot off anyways. I mean shooting someone while your being relieved on can't be easy.

Also, I've been thinking about clone commandos for a while now that I've finished reading the books and playing the game and I wrote up an idea for a cuy'val dar. If you would like to look at the write up I can PM it to you, Ronin.

Ronin
13 February 2007, 06:02 AM
Well, we'll see what else my daily commute coughs up :)

By all means, shoot me a PM Chief! :)

IzVenjari
13 February 2007, 06:56 PM
Chilling man chilling!!!

And as i figure that was the mood you were trying to create...

Awesome man awesome!!!! :D

Jax Nova
14 February 2007, 08:33 AM
Have to say, very well written. :)

It really does portray a somewhat cold position for the clones but that is all to true in the reality of the story. I think you captured it well. :)

I myself, being parcial to clone troopers, have been going a different direction with Order 66... a more complicated and long story but I do really like your piece. :)

JediRanger
14 February 2007, 11:10 AM
Really like what you've written Ronin. Can't wait to see what else your writing or planning to do.