Aggressive Negotiations. SW/SW

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Aggressive Negotiations. SW/SW

Postby RK_Striker_JK_5 » Wed May 26, 2010 8:14 pm

Okay, here is another spinoff from 'Where No Jedi Has Gone Before'. It takes place two years after part one of 'Gone Before' and one year after 'Measure of a Droid'.

Here we go!

*****
Chapter One: First Impressions, First Disaster
2378/Stardate 55264.9/26 years after the Battle of Yavin
The sun rose over the First city of the Klingon Empire, turning the Qam-Chee River crimson with its rays. Merchants opened their shops along streets that were already filling with foot traffic and speeders. The Great Hall's doors opened, a symbolic gesture of hiding nothing and showing their 'honesty' to the galaxy at large.

At the center of the Great Hall, two dozen Klingon senators walked into the main hall and stood before a steel-gray throne. Each one wore the ceremonial metal robes of their office and were unarmed save for a ceremonial d'k tagh knife holstered at their belt. At precisely 800 hours local time, a burly Klingon swathed in the cloak of office approached the throne from behind and walked up the steps to it.

Chancellor Martok, son of Urthog, turned and sat down, grunting and looking out at the assembled councilors with his one good eye. "I call this meeting of the Klingon High Council to order!" he shouted, banging on his armrest. A smile crossed his face. "Well, as much order as a group of Klingons can muster," he said, his smile turning into a grin. He pulled a PADD out from a band on his cloak and touched the screen, scrolling through its contents. "Now to the first order of business..."

Several hours passed as edicts and orders were given. Reports from General Goluk, head of the Defense Force and other top warriors were heard. Councilors talked of laws and amendments. After lunch, petitioners were let in to be heard.

The back of the High Council parted slightly, allowing those with enough clout or with big enough problems to speak to the High Council. Four humanoids in brown robes reaching down to right above the ground approached, hoods covering their heads. The lead one reached up and pulled his hood back, revealing a human male with green eyes and long black hair tied into a ponytail. He looked up at Martok and bowed his head. "Chancellor Martok, I am Kyp Durron, Jedi Master from the New Republic." He motioned to the others, who took off their hoods. "May I introduce Miko Reglia, Ganner Rhysode and Wurth Skidder?"

There was silence for a moment before Martok leaned forward, looking down slightly at the Jedi. "And?" he asked, waving at Kyp. "Is this some sort of diplomatic entreaty? Are we supposed to be impressed by you in some fashion?"

Kyp's eyes narrowed. "From what we've heard from the Federation, Klingons prefer actions to words." He pushed back his robe, reaching up and unclasping it from around his neck and letting it drop to the stone floor. He stood in the middle of the Great Hall, bare arms rippling with muscle. His right hand dangled near his belt and the lightsaber clipped to it. "So, Chancellor. Shall I act?"

One of the councilors snorted and crossed his thick arms over a barrel-like chest, almost bursting from his armor. "Act? Be silent, child. Your posturing does little to endear the New Republic to us. At least the Remnant sent someone qualified for negotiations."

Kyp's spine bristled as he wheeled around on his heel to face the councilor, but Wurth suddenly spoke up. "The Remnant?" he half-shouted, turning his head and locking piercing eyes onto the Councilor. "I thought you folks had more honor than that!"

A low growl escaped the Councilor's mouth, rumbling up from his throat. He unsheathed his knife and slid a switch on it, causing two secondary blades to spring forth along the main blade. He waved his d'k tahg around stepping forward. "No one insults Gartul, son of Ver'kel!"

Wurth smirked and unclasped his robe, letting it fall to the floor. His lightsaber sprang from his belt to his hand, igniting with a snap-hiss. He held the orange blade up in a one-handed grip. "You really don't want to do this," he said, waving his other hand and reaching out with the Force.

Kyp shook his head. "Wurth, don't do this," he barked. He held up his hands. "We don't want to fight, Councilor."

Gartul bared his sharpened teeth as he waved his knife back and forth, advancing upon Wurth. "To a Klingon, all life is battle!" He bent his legs at the knee slightly and spread his legs apart, clenching his free hand. "Come on, boy! Let us see what a spoon bender can do against a real warrior!"

Wurth walked over, closing the distance with Gartul. He rolled his shoulders and swung his lightsaber at Gartul's right hand, aiming for the blade. "Don't say-" He stopped talking and his mouth dropped in surprise when his plasma blade hit the d'k tahg and stopped, bouncing off slightly. "What the kriff?"

Gartul's face nearly split in half as he grinned, glancing down at his knife. "Hah! Seems your fancy laser swords aren't as good as an old-fashioned knife." He suddenly moved, advancing upon Wurth with speed that belied his size. He parried away the plasma blade before thrusting his free hand out, hitting the younger and smaller human in the face with an unblocked palm strike right to the face.

Wurth flew back, blood streaming from his mashed nose. He struck the rough stone floor, skidding a half-meter before stopping. He groaned and blinked twice. "That went well..." he groaned, wiping at his nose. He suddenly looked up as his danger sense flared. Gartul loomed over him, knife hand twitching. "Oh, shavit..."

Gartul leaned forward, but stopped when twin snap-hisses filled the air, followed by the whine of lightsabers. "Not very honorable," he said as Ganner and Miko stood behind him, blades aimed at his neck.

Ganner snarled. "Touch him and there's gonna be an emergency vote for a new councilor," he said through clenched teeth.

Kyp held up a hand and stepped forward. "Ganner, Miko, stand down. Now."

Miko glanced to the side with his dark eyes. "Kyp, he's gonna-"

"STAND DOWN!" Kyp bellowed, his face flushing. He locked his flashing green eyes on Gartul. "Although if you do harm Wurth, it will be the last mistake you ever make."

Wurth cleared his throat. "I appreciate this, guys, but I got myself into this mess. I'll get myself out." He looked up at the Klingon towering over him and leaned forward. "Ready?"

Gartul chuckled, then sheathed his knife. He looked down at Wurth and extended his hand. "There'd be no honor in killing you, Wurth Skidder." He grasped a shocked Wurth and hauled him to his feet. "Interesting weapon, there. You built it yourself?"

Wurth nodded, his mouth hanging open.

Kyp looked to Martok as he sat, grinning on his throne. "Typical for the High Council?" He straightened up and placed his hands on his hips. "We're here to talk, not fight."

Martok shook his head and peered at the young man with his one good eye. "We are Klingons, Master Durron. We can do both!" He leaned forward and the grin dropped away. "Welcome to the Klingon Empire."
*****

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Re: Aggressive Negotiations. SW/SW

Postby stitch626 » Sun May 30, 2010 1:10 pm

Hehehe... gotta love Klingons, and you've captured them well.


SO, what makes the Klingon knife resistant to lightsabers? :)
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Re: Aggressive Negotiations. SW/SW

Postby RK_Striker_JK_5 » Fri Aug 06, 2010 2:17 pm

Sticth-Thanks. :) As for the resistance, might or might not be 'figured out', since it was stated in 'Gone Before'. ;)

... Anyone else? :(

*Ahem* Here we go!

*****
Ganner and Miko hovered over Wurth as the latter sat on a wooden bench pushed up against a stone wall. "I think the nose is healing nicely," Ganner observed, poking at a bluish area of skin right next to the left nostril. "It really was a good hit."

Wurth arched his eyebrows at his friend. "Gee, thanks for your concern." He leaned over and stared at Kyp from across the room. "A little help here, fearless leader?"

Kyp's head tilted up as he lay sprawled across a metal plank hanging from another stone wall. He leveraged himself up with help from a chain attached to the bench and grinned. "I think you're doing fine, Wurth." He looked around the room the Klingons had provided for them. Torches in braziers were mounted on the walls, actually bolted in-or faked for aesthetic purposes. Shelves with actual paper books and weapons straight out of a fantasy novel hanging from the walls were also there in their four-room living quarters.

Still, modern touches like computer panels, automatic doors, control panels and supposed replicators were scattered about. Kyp stood up and walked over to a small recessed section in a wall lined with modern-looking material. He cleared his voice. "Water," he said. He was rewarded as a small metal tankard materialized in a swirl of colors. He picked up the pewter-colored mug and sniffed it, not feeling anything untoward from it. Kyp took a sip before draining it. "Best water I've ever had," he said, grinning.

Miko glanced over from where he leaned over Wurth. "It can't be that good," he remarked. He straightened up and walked over to the replicator, leaning over and peering into the little alcove. "Think it makes nerf steak?" he said, chuckling.

"I doubt they've ever heard of nerf," Kyp said, smiling. The smile suddenly dropped away. "Damn, I don't know any Klingon foods." His lips curled slightly and he balled his fist up. The Jedi Master paced around a bit before throwing up his muscular arms. "The diplomatic corps sent us with bare-bones knowledge at best! All we know is Klingons like to fight and are one of the Federation's allies." He walked up to one of the decorations and picked at it. "And apparently they like old stuff?"

All four men suddenly look to the door as they sensed someone approaching. Ganner's blue eyes narrowed. "I don't think... she." He glanced to Kyp and nodded once. "I don't sense anything off from her." His nostrils flared and he swallowed. "And I think I smell food!"

Kyp raised his hand and gestured, sending out a small telekinetic push. The door slid open, revealing a young Klingon female, appearing to be about Kyp's age. She wore an ankle-length silver dress, with black boots peeking out right below the hem and a red chain-mail blouse cinched with a black belt. A knife was sheathed in the belt, along with a few pouches. Her thin but toned right arm was extended to a control panel near the doorframe, but her fingers had not yet touched the buttons.

Her eyes widened slightly, pushing her almost petite forehead crest back slightly. Her mouth formed a small 'o' of surprise as she stared at the door. She looked inside at the four men and her hand clenched slightly. "Did you do that?" she asked, snarling slightly.

Kyp raised his hand and waggled his fingers. "Sorry about that," he said, smiling. "Just wanted to make sure no one was trying to kill us or anything like that." He waved his arm out to the room. "Please come in. My name is Kyp Durron." He gestured to the other Jedi in the room. "This is Ganner Rhysode, Wurth Skidder and Miko Reglia," he said, introducing them.

The Klingon stepped into the room, pulling a wheeled cart laden with several trays and bowls behind her. "I am Jaroul, and I bring food." She stepped back and motioned to several meats, a bowl of soup a steam wafting above it and a pitcher of water with cups arrayed around it. "Heart of targ, bregit lung and gladst."

Wurth stood up from the bench and walked over. He picked up a dish of bregit lung and sniffed at it. Finally, he picked it up and took a bite of it. "Not bad," he said between bites. "A bit chewy, but tasty." He smiled at Jaroul. "Thanks!"

Jaroul smiled and nodded her head, baring white teeth. "You are welcome, Wurth." She tilted her head as she regarded his round face and the small bruises. "You're less injured than I thought."

Kyp nodded as Ganner and Miko walked over and began eating. "Jedi healing trance, along with some bacta patches earlier." A smile played over his face. "I thought Klingons liked scars, though."

Jaroul snorted as she picked up a pipius claw and bit into it, breaking the shell open with her teeth and sucking the meat out. "Scars in battle, not scars when humbled by a High Council member." She dropped the claw back onto the plate and tapped her chain-mail blouse. "You're lucky Gartul is honorable and didn't kill you then and there."

Wurth paled slightly. "You were there?"

Jaroul pursed her lips. "I heard about it..." She growled. "You'll find out anyway. Gartul is my father." She spied Ganner as he paused before taking a bite of heart of targ and her lips curled. "Oh, please. Warriors do not resort to poison!"

Ganner glanced down at the hunk of meat before placing it in his mouth, chewing and swallowing. "Not bad," he said, draining a glass of water.

Kyp crossed his bare arms and stared at Jaroul, reaching out with his senses. He detected curiosity and intrigue from her. He rubbed his chin before thumping his chest lightly. "Thanks for the food," he said, smiling slightly.

Jaroul thumped her own chest. "You are welcome, Kyp Durron." She looked around at their room. "Is this to your liking? It might be a bit... bare, compared to what humans are used to." Her eyes danced with an inner fire as she stepped forward, closing the distance with Kyp. "But we Klingons do not make out bodies soft with pillows or pads." She tapped his chest. "You seem to be sterner than most."

Kyp swallowed as his cheeks flushed. He reached up to tug at his collar, quickly realizing his shirt had no collar. He stepped back as the room closed in on him slightly. "Well, I-" He stopped as he spied Ganner, Miko and Wurth grabbing the cart and wheeling it off toward one of the side rooms. "Hey!"

Ganner turned and tossed Kyp a salute. "Just wanna sit down, maybe read some literature." He gave Kyp a wink and smirk. "You keep negotiating with Jaroul there, Kyp. Make some real connections with the Empire," he said before exiting.

Kyp rolled his green eyes before he turned back-to see Jaroul standing right next to him, an almost savage grin on her face. He backpedaled, hands up in front of him. "Whoa!" he half-shouted, carefully avoiding any obstacles behind him. He eventually hit the stone wall and slid against it, but his legs clipped one of the metal benches and he stumbled slightly, Jaroul following close on his heels. "You just met me!" he said, rubbing his shin and hopping slightly.

Jaroul laughed as she kept on Kyp's heels. "Maybe I'm simply seeing something I like." She paused and placed her hands on her hips, cocking her head to the side. "Wait, this doesn't make sense."

The Jedi Master barked a laugh. "You're telling me!"

Jaroul canted her head down slightly and stared at him. " I mean why don't you simply use your powers to push me away?" She motioned to the door on the opposite side of the room from where the pair stood. "If you can effortlessly open a duranium door and override the controls, lifting me up and over should be easy for you." Jaroul's brow furrowed and she suddenly grinned. "Unless you like the chase and the inevitable conclusion."

Kyp shook his head. "The reason is the door's a door, but you're you. It would be a bit of the Dark Side to simply Force push you away when you're not doing any harm."

Jaroul paused in her advances. "Dark Side?" she asked. "What is the 'Dark Side'?"

The Jedi breathed out a sigh of relief. He walked around Jaroul and sat down on the metal bench hanging off the wall. He patted the grating next to him and waited for the young female to sit down before speaking. "With the Force-the mystical energy field created by all living things that surrounds us, permeates and binds the universe together-there is the Light, and the Dark."

He leaned back and focused on a point a few meters away before continuing. "The Dark Side is... something to avoid. It is acid to the soul, corrupting and turning you into that you hate the most." He looked up into Jaroul's brown eyes and the next words slipped out. "It robs you of your honor, like Molor."

Jaroul breathed out and nodded. "The old tyrant, deposed by Kahless who forged the true laws of honor."

Kyp also nodded while his mind searched frantically for just who the hell Molor was. "Yeah, precisely..." I name a Klingon I've never heard of. Thank you very much, Force. He cleared his throat. "So... oh, kriff it. Who is Molor?"

There was a pause before Jaroul spoke. "You-you don't know? But you used his name!"

Kyp swallowed and leaned back, his head tapping slightly against the wall. "Jedi powers aren't just physical. We get flashes, insight into things." He pointed at the door. "All four of us sensed you there before we opened the door. Images, words and sometimes whole sentences." He chuckled. "It can get a bit annoying."

The door chime suddenly sounded. Kyp rose and walked over, gesturing. The door slid open, revealing an older male Klingon with shock-white hair clad in robes. "Chancellor Martok will have an audience with you tomorrow at 0800 hours in front of the High Council," he announced.

Kyp nodded. "Thank you," he said, face hardening.

The Klingon chuckled and shook his head. "You might not thank me after the meeting." He stepped back and the door closed, leaving Kyp standing there.

The Jedi whipped his head around, pony tail jangling behind him. He glanced at the side room Ganner, Miko and Wurth had disappeared into while walking over to Jaroul. He waited for his three former apprentices to appear in response to his telepathic summons before speaking. "Jaroul, we need your help." he spread out his arms. "If we don't get some sense of how to act tomorrow, or what proper decorum for Klingons is, we could cause an interstellar incident. Or a war. Or worse."

"Worse than a war?" Ganner asked.

Jaroul ignored him and focused on Kyp. She looked him over before nodding. "I shall tell you all I know." She bared her teeth and spread her arms out. "Welcome to my world."
*****

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Re: Aggressive Negotiations. SW/SW

Postby RK_Striker_JK_5 » Wed Sep 08, 2010 2:49 pm

And... no one? *Sigh* All right.

Here we go!

*****
Chapter Two: Second Chances, Same Results?
The next morning
The four Jedi marched down the stone corridors of the Great Hall, robes left in their quarters. Their boots echoed off the walls and ceilings as they muscled their way past Klingons and a few other aliens. Kyp took the lead, eyes narrow and hands clenched by his side. His long hair was tied up in a ponytail and trailed down to right below his neck. Ganner was by his right, the scar down the right side of his face and just behind his eye making his face seem even longer. Wurth and Miko trailed behind, eyes straight ahead and senses alert for any danger.

As they made their way, Kyp's mind flashed to last night and the lessons Jaroul imparted. He went over them again and again, hoping he interpreted them right...

"Stand up!" Jaroul barked. She placed her hands on her hips and walked along the line of Jedi, eyes trailing up and down. "Do not hide your heads in front of the High Council. Leave the robes here. State your case clearly to Chancellor Martok." Her gaze shot to Miko at the end. "And stop trying to blend into the background!"

Miko blinked. "I wasn't," he mumbled, glancing to the floor.

Jaroul was in front of him in an instant. She placed a finger on the bottom of his chin and tilted his head up. "Look us in the eye, Miko. Keep your head up and eyes sharp." She looked to Ganner standing to Miko's right. "How did you get that scar?"

Ganner's hand came up and brushed against the long, red scar going down the right side of his face. "In battle!" he proclaimed, grinning widely.

"And by 'battle', he means a bar brawl in Kuat," Wurth said, leaning to his left and in front of Ganner. "It was one hell of a row, too. He actually did a bar slide into the lap of some-"

Ganner wrapped his head around Wurth's head and squeezed, gritting his teeth. "Shut the hell up!" he growled as the two wheeled around, stumbling away. He tried keeping his arms around the younger man's head, but Wurth brought his hands up and forced them through, giving his cranium some relief from the pressure. "Stop squirming so I can-shavit!" he shouted as he and Wurth collided with the wall, falling down.

Jaroul peeled her eyes away from them and looked to Kyp. "It might be a good idea to go alone," she said. She looked to Miko. "This one is too timid for Klingons. And the other two are fools."

Miko's gaze hardened. "'This one' is right here, thank you very much. And would prefer to be addressed directly." He crossed his arms and glanced away, anger flaring for an instant before dying down. "I know I'm-"

"Speak to me!" Jaroul raged, stomping over to him and grabbing his arm. She whipped him around to face her as spittle flew from the corners from her mouth and her eyes blazed. "Do not turn your back to a Klingon, Miko Reglia! Face us with conviction in your heart. Face us with truth on your lips and your eyes leading to your soul."

Kyp gestured and Jaroul suddenly turned around, wobbling a bit. He reared back and suddenly backhanded her across the face, sending her crashing to the floor. "And never talk to my men that way!' he thundered.

Ganner and Wurth stopped in mid-wrestle, staring at their leader. "Kyp... what the
kriff did you just do?" Ganner asked, voice above a whisper. He glanced down at Jaroul and did a light scan of the young woman through the Force. "Are you all right?"

Jaroul wiped her mouth and slowly got to her feet. She looked Kyp over and shook her head. "That was not a good thing to do, my dear Jedi," she said with bloodstained teeth.

Kyp swallowed and clenched his hand, throbbing knuckles popping slightly. "Sorry, Jaroul. It seemed the Klingon thing to do." He glanced away, his cheeks reddening. "No excuse, though. None at all."

Jaroul grinned and took his hand. "I don't mean that, Kyp. Next time, use a straight punch. A backhand is either the invitation to a duel to the death... or a mating ritual." She brought his hand up to her still-bleeding lips and kissed it. "Although for Klingons, it can also be both!"

Ganner was by his side in an instant. He placed his forearm on Kyp's shoulder and leaned slightly, using the Force for mild help in staying balanced. "Want us to go read some more literature, Kyp? I'm sure we can reread 'Kahless against Molor' a few more times."


Kyp's mind flashed back to the present as his group approached Martok on his throne. The High Council members stood on either side, some with looks of trepidation and others with looks of sadistic delight. The Jedi Master ignored them as he stepped forward and thumped his chest. "Chancellor Martok, son of Urthog. I am Kyp, son of Yori Durron. I greet you in the name of the New Republic."

Martok's face nearly split as he grinned and returned the salute. "Much better, Jedi Durron!" The grin fell away and he leaned back. His fingers dug into the armrests. "So, why should we ally ourselves with your New Republic, precisely?"

"A trade of technologies, for one thing," Kyp said. He spread his hands wide. "Imagine what you've done with the Federation times a hundred. We are an honorable people, Chancellor. If you tell us to go away, we would. But I wouldn't recommend it."

A smirk lit Martok's craggy face. "A threat?"

"Merely a warning to avoid missing an opportunity," Kyp replied. He paced a bit, keeping his eyes on Martok. "We know you're attempting to set the Empire down the path of true honor once more. Let us aid you in your quest. We are stronger together than apart, after all."

Off to the side, Councilor Gartul spoke up. "And do you extend this strength even if we do ally ourselves with the Imperial Remnant? Your two governments are allies, after all."

Wurth suddenly spoke up. "The Remnant is... honorable. I was in error last time concerning them." He looked to Gartul and smiled tightly, keeping his head high. "And there is strength in numbers, after all."

Gartul nodded. "Well spoken, boy. The Remnant's representative is here, as well." He held out a muscular arm and pointed off to the side, beyond where the High Council convened.

Kyp, Ganner, Miko and Wurth followed Gartul's finger and peered at the shadows. Wurth's brow furrowed as he broadcast his thoughts. Anyone else getting static?

Kyp's voice rang out in all their minds. Something is there, but not there. His voice called out as he crossed his arms. "Come on out, whoever-or whatever-you are."

A human male emerged from the shadows, clad in a black pilot's uniform. Even in the light, his craggy face was still indistinct and blurry. Yellowish eyes glared out from shadow. He held a small valise in his left hand and his right was clenched tightly, causing the gloves he wore to creak. "About time," the male said, smirking.

All four Jedi tensed, their arms falling to their sides near holstered lightsabers. Kyp focused laser-like eyes on the former Hand of the Emperor. "Maarek Stele, I presume." he leaned back slightly. "What brings you here to Q'onos?"

"And why can't you sense me," Maarek said, walking past a few council members as he approached the Jedi Master. He stopped a half-meter in front of Kyp and extended his free hand. "Nice to finally meet you."

Kyp hesitated a half-second before accepting Maarek's hand and pumping it twice. "I have heard good things about you. So I guess it's finally nice to meet you, too."

Martok leaned forward on his throne, his lone eye squinting. "I hope neither of you are planning on using... politics or anything like that. I prefer this to be straightforward, with no trickery or duplicity." He held up his right hand and clenched it. "We are Klingons, after all! Such tactics would not endear either government to us."

Kyp tilted his head to the side and locked his eyes with Martok's. "Chancellor, I've never taken the long way around when going to my goals." He leaned back and glanced at Maarek. "As long as Mister Stele here plays nice," he said, his gaze dropping to the case still held in Maarek's left hand.

Maarek chuckled. His hand clenched and his aura suddenly flared. "Just making sure my hand wasn't tipped too early, Mister Durron. I'll explain later."

Off to the side, Miko shook his head and let out a slow whistle. "I have got a-"

Ganner scowled. "Don't. Even. Think about finishing that sentence, Miko. We've got enough migraines already."

The younger man's lips curled in a smirk. "Maybe this latest will cause our heads to explode and put us out of our misery?" he said, shrugging.

Ganner's head tilted down for a moment before it shot back up. "I have a bad feeling about this." He waited a beat, then his entire arm blurred as he smacked Miko on the back of the head. "It didn't work!"

Kyp ignored the others. He stepped around Maarek and approached Martok on his throne. "As I was saying, we can be stronger together. Bacta can heal your wounds and get you back to your battles faster, allowing you to gain more honor."

Gartul threw his head back and laughed. "You sound like a Federation human, Kyp. I knew there was something I liked about you!" The smile fell away. He turned his head to the back where Wurth stood. "But what is your role, young one? What do you contribute here?"

Wurth spun around on his heel, facing Gartul directly. He strode forward, hands clenching and toned arms flexing slightly from the motion. "I am Master Durron's cha'DIch. I am his second, his blade." He turned at the waist to look at Kyp. "He uses words as weapons here." He looked back at Gartul and patted the emitter hilt hanging from his belt. "Ganner, Miko and I will use our blades as weapons."

Gartul nodded, dipping his head. "But your lightsabers do not slice our weapons in half," he observed. "What then?" he asked, patting the knife holstered at his side.

"There's more than one way to skin a targ," Wurth said, round face stretching slightly as he smiled. His shoulders bobbed and his eyes twinkled. "Besides, killed by the High Council? What stories they'd tell!" He paused and his head dipped slightly, casting shadows over his eyes. "The survivors, that is."

Gartul's frame shook slightly and his face nearly split. "We must share a barrel of blood wine after this, Wurth!" He leaned forward. "If you can stomach it, that is."

"I can stomach it," Wurth replied, rubbing his chin. He paused mid-motion and his eyebrows furrowed. "It's not made from real blood, is it?"

Kyp paid the two no mind as he continued speaking with Martok. He paced a bit, keeping his gaze firmly planted on Martok's lone eye. "Bacta to help you get back to battle sooner, ion cannons and hyperdrives."

Martok grunted. "Fancy gadgets and healing liquids are nice, but does the New Republic have honor?" His hands tightened on his throne's armrests. "For too long, the Empire has betrayed the principles of Kahless, gone down the path of the bully and idiot." His right hand curled into a fist and he slammed it into the stone. "No more!" He focused on Kyp and stood up, walking down to face the Jedi Master. "Tell me, Kyp Durron. Is the New Republic honorable?"

Kyp's jaw clenched. His green eyes narrowed into emerald slits. "We are," he finally stated.

Martok held his gaze for a moment before breaking it. He stepped around Kyp and walked up to Maarek. "Is the Remnant honorable?" he asked, peering into the former Hand's soul.

Maarek grunted and his feet shifted, but he returned Martok's stare. "Once, the Empire was also a gang of petty thugs and bullies, led by a tyrant that would make Molor shiver." He glanced to the side and smirked as several High Council members grumbled. "But now, we do have honor."

The chancellor spun on his heel and walked back around to face Kyp. "The Empire once had honor. I saw how you were, Kyp Durron, when Councilor Gartul mentioned them yesterday." he bared his teeth briefly. "Tell me. If we were to ally ourselves with them, can we still ally ourselves with the New Republic?"

Kyp's eyes flashed and they narrowed into emerald slits. "Once, I would have said no. The old Empire hurt me. It hurt my family." He tapped his chest, right above his heart. "But this Empire is not the same." He spun about on his heel and faced Maarek. "If you work for the Empire, then it has honor. If you work for it, then there can be peace between us."

Maarek's head inclined slightly. "If you're saying it, then perhaps the Remnant and the New Republic have turned a corner, so to speak." He smiled, almost an unnatural expression on his face. "I'm glad to hear it, Kyp."

The chancellor rolled his eye and grunted. "Enough of this!" he half-shouted. Martok turned and walked back to his throne, tugging on his cloak so it didn't bunch up beneath him as he sat. "So, gentlemen. Impress the High Council."
*****

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Re: Aggressive Negotiations. SW/SW

Postby Vic » Thu Sep 09, 2010 8:36 am

I like where this is going, Kyp better watch out or he just might get married there. :)
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Re: Aggressive Negotiations. SW/SW

Postby stitch626 » Wed Sep 15, 2010 6:03 pm

Love the Jedi interactions. So friendly. :lol:
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Re: Aggressive Negotiations. SW/SW

Postby RK_Striker_JK_5 » Wed Nov 10, 2010 9:09 pm

Vic-Maybe, maybe not. :P He's still trying to get his head above water, so to speak. ;)

Stitch-lol, yeah. Kyp might go Dark Side on his friends. :happydevil:

The information I got on the subject races is from the IKS Gorkon novels and my own interpretation.

Here we go!

*****
Three hours and ten minutes later
Kyp massaged his forehead. He slumped forward on a table in his quarters and took a sip of ale. "That was painful," he groused. He looked up and across at Maarek as he dug into a plate of wriggling worms. "What is that?"

Maarek's yellow eyes looked up from the plate. "Gagh," he said. He shoved some of the slick worms into his mouth and bit down hard onto them. "Not bad, actually. Kind of like Verpine food."

Ganner, standing off to the side near a wooden bench were Wurth sat, snorted. "Isn't Verpine cuisine poisonous to humans?"

Maarek shrugged. "It can be, if proper precautions aren't taken." He looked back at Kyp and slid his plate forward. "Want some?"

The Jedi Master held his hand up and the plate floated off the table slightly, moving over to land in front of him. He picked up some of the gagh with his hands and shoved it into his mouth, biting down on them and swallowing. His face twisted and he shuddered. "Delicious," he choked out, turning slightly green.

Wurth stood up from where he sat next to Ganner and walked over to the table. "Okay, who are you?" he asked, crossing his arms and standing over Maarek. "Kyp knows you, but we don't. So spill."

Maarek sat for a moment before standing up, his chair toppling back. He pivoted on his heel and stared into Wurth's eyes with a penetrating gaze. "I am Maarek Stele, child," he said, voice hardening. "I was once a Hand of the Emperor before leaving. Baron Soontir Fel was able to convince me that the Remnant had changed, so I returned." His hands clenched and his eyes blazed. "I have done many regrettable things, Wurth Skidder. Many."

Kyp cleared his throat. "Problem, Maarek?"

Maarek's chair righted itself with a bit of telekinesis and Maarek sat back down. "None at all," he said, smiling. He looked up at Wurth. "Answer your question?"

Wurth backed up, stumbling slightly. He sat back down and nodded rapidly. "Yeah, thanks."

Kyp's arm dropped and he pointed to the valise now placed beside a table leg. "Okay, so what's in the case? I could barely sense you back in the council chambers, but ysalamiri cause a total blackout of Force powers." He leaned forward. "What gives?"

"It's a new piece of technology," Maarek replied. He leaned to the side and picked it up, placing it on a clear spot on the table. He unlocked it and opened the valise, exposing several tubes of blue liquid and pieces of electronic equipment. "Genetic material of ysalamiri. Based on Federation replicator technology." he closed the valise and put it back down on the stone floor. "It's obviously not perfected, but in time it will be."

Kyp nodded, then locked eyes with Maarek. "Okay, let's put our cards on the table. "You've been here longer and know the Klingons better." He motioned to his three former students. "We got a crash course in their culture, but we've got Centerpoint-sized gaps in our knowledge. Got anything that would be major shocks for us?"

The former Hand rubbed his stubble-coated chin. "They have subject races known as jeghpu'wI'-less than citizens, but far more than slaves. They have rights under the law, but are of a lower class than Klingons."

A groan escaped Kyp's mouth. "I figured they'd have something like that." He clenched his hand and slammed it into the table. "How many rights?" he finally asked, lips curling.

Maarek shrugged. "Jeghpu'wI' are subjects, Kyp. Klingons find the concept of what we consider 'slavery' to be dishonorable, but don't be fooled. They're conquerors and warriors. Maybe the Remnant would simply be a better fit for them."

Ganner spoke up. "We were sent to do a job, Maarek, and we'll see it through to the end." He straightened up. "No matter what."

Maarek chuckled and took a sip of ale. "I know, but the road ahead will be difficult for you." he motioned a bit with his left hand. "You're a bit too... straightforward for diplomatic work. There are many twists and turns ahead for you. Are you sure you want to stay here and finish what you started?"

Kyp's lips quirked up ward slightly. He picked up a cup of water and saluted Maarek before downing it. "If you're asking me that, you don't know me very well." He suddenly stood up. "And if you'll excuse me, I have someone to see." He tossed a salute behind his shoulder before exiting the room.

Maarek stared after him, then turned around at the waist and looked at Ganner, confusion on his face. "What the Sith did he mean by that?"

Ganner walked over and picked up a piece of bregit lung from Kyp's plate. "He's got a hot date with Jaroul," he stated, taking a bite. He chewed it a bit before swallowing. "Is it weird this food's growing on me?" he asked, sky-blue eyes narrowing slightly.

Wurth chuckled. "As long as you don't mean it literally, Ganner."

Chapter Three: Answers not Wanted
Kyp stomped down the hall. His hands clenched and he bit his lip as he increased his gait. Several Klingons and even a few members of species Kyp didn't recognize stopped and stared at him... and then increased their gait, hurrying away from the Jedi Master as his aura flashed between red, blue and indigo.

He let his feet carry him around, down long corridors lit by flickering torches. His mind barely registered the passage of time until he stopped beside a single door near the back of the Great Hall. He glanced down at a nameplate right above the door's controls, then smacked his forehead. "Can't read Klingonese," he muttered. Kyp half-closed his eyes and reached out, sensing the familiar aura of Gartul and someone else. He tapped the control panel, letting the Force guide his fingers. "Councilor, I must speak with you."

The door slid open, revealing a somewhat small office. A desk was placed near the back, with a rather large viewscreen dominating the far wall. Several cabinets, computer terminals and one other door lined the wall. Gratul sat at the desk while an odd alien stood next to him. It... he was purple, with multiple tentacles and three eyes on stalks jutting from his bulbous head. One of the tentacles was curled around a bulky PADD, studded and heavy-looking.

Gartul waved the being off. "We shall continue this later, Yok," he grumbled. He stood up and held his arms out, grinning. "Welcome, Kyp! Have you come to announce you want Jaroul's hand in marriage?"

Kyp opened his mouth, closed it then opened it again before blinking. He looked to the side, then stepped out of the office. The door slid closed, then opened again. Kyp stepped back into the office. "Okay, gonna try this again," he muttered before looking at Gartul with blazing emerald eyes. "Councilor, what are jeghpu'wI'?" he asked.

Gartul's stance shifted ever so slightly. "They are the subject races of the Empire. Why?"

Kyp breathed through his nose and steadied himself. "Before I answer, I must tell you about my own past." He thumped his chest. "My old home was the Deyer Colony in the Anoat System. When I was nine, the old Empire rounded up 'dissidents' and shipped them off to slave labor camps or other, worse fates." He paused and rubbed the bridge of his nose. "I spent the next eight years in the spice mines of Kessel, a living hell. My parents died... and I sometimes wonder if it was better to have joined them."

Gartul's mouth turned down. "But you survived, stronger and more powerful. What does this..." His voice trailed off and he glanced to Yok, still standing to the side of his desk. "Yok, how did you come to be my secretary?"

Yok's beak clacked open and his middle eyestalk shot up. "Oh, my. Has senility set in, sir? I could ask the lady Jaroul to-"

"Answer the question!" Gartul barked, balling up his fist and slamming it into his desk. He fell down into his chair and tossed his arms up. "For twenty-five years, you have enraged me. I should kill you, now!"

Yok's body shook slightly. "Ah, yes. Please kill the only being in the Klingon Empire able to keep you in line and make sure you reach your appointments." His beak clacked and his head wavered. "Oh, very well." Two of his eyestalks swiveled over to gaze at Kyp. "To answer Councilor Gartok's question, I applied for the position about twenty-five years ago. You interviewed and hired me."

Gartul nodded and waved his hand to Kyp. "Yok is a Pheben, a jeghpu'wI'. They are not slaves, Kyp. Subjects, yes. But not slaves. They have rights." He glanced down to his desk, then back up. "Although it was not always so."

A chair opposite Gartul slid back, allowing Kyp to step over to it and sit down. "You lost your way," he stated evenly. "The Klingons forgot what Kahless taught you."

A snort came from the councilor. "Others would challenge you to a fight to the death over such words. Fortunately, I am not a fool." He leaned back and looked to the ceiling. "Once, we knew that being a warrior was simply a path to honor. Not merely the path. Doctors, politicians, farmers and merchants. All could achieve Sto-vo-kor as long as they led their lives with honor."

Kyp leaned forward. "What happened? And how have you regained sight of the path?"

Gartul's eyes clouded over slightly. "A little over a thousand years ago, an alien species known as the Hur'q invaded and sacked Q'onos. We eventually drove them off, but they left behind devastation. Our cities were in ruins, our fields salted and our people scared. We quickly began building fleets, vowing to never be weak like that again." His fist suddenly curled into a ball and he slammed it into his duranium desk, denting it. "But we lost sight of our honor! We became conquerors and-yes-slavers. We became the Hur'q ourselves."

There was silence for a few heartbeats before Kyp spoke once more. "And now?"

"There have always been those who remember the true path of honor, or have been reminded of it by outsiders such as James Kirk or Diego Reyes. But it wasn't until Chancellor Gorkon in 2293 who was able to truly set us once more on the true path." Gartul smiled sadly. "Over the past eighty years, the jeghpu'wI' have gained more rights. We still conquer species, but it is less conquering and more..." He shrugged. "Why bother? We conquer. But that is our way. We are aggressive by nature, barely held in check by our honor and ego." He spread his arms out. "We are Klingons, Kyp Durron. No other explanation is necessary."

Kyp sat there for a moment before standing up. "Thank you for your time and words," he said. He looked up to Yok. "Thank you as well. I am glad you're not a slave... but I wish you were something more in the Empire."

Yok's eyestalks dipped slightly. "Thank you, but really, it's no problem. I've got a good salary and can send a substantial portion back home to the family farm on Phebes. My retirement plan's the envy of my spawning pool!"

Kyp blinked. He leaned forward slightly. "Your family farm? Your family owns property?"

Yok's body shuddered. "I did just at least imply that, didn't I?" His eyestalks drooped. "Yes. It's been in my family for over seven generations. One of the larger on Phebes, but not the largest." One of his tentacles shot up and the tip curled, shaking. "One day, Ladg, one day we shall surpass you!"

Gartul's head slowly turned and he looked up at Yok. "Yes, Yok. That will be... all. I'll see you in the morning." His eyes followed the Pheben as he shuffled off to the door and out. The councilor then looked back at Kyp. "Things were worse for the jeghpu'wI'. They are better, though."

Kyp bit his lips and his brow furrowed. He slid his chair back and stood. "Thank you, Councilor," he said, thumping his chest. "I am glad for the information you gave me here."

Gartul rose and returned the salute. "Such information will aid you in your negotiations, Kyp. Both with Martok and with Jaroul."

The Jedi opened his mouth, but snapped it shut. His right eyebrow rose slightly. "Wait... what?" he half-shouted. His hands clenched. "What in the Force are you talking about?"

A rumbling sigh came from Gartul. "I have heard from Jaroul how well you two get along." He walked around his desk to stand by Kyp's side. "I have seen you, Master Jedi. You have the soul of a warrior, of a Klingon!" He reared back and patted Kyp on the arm. "You would make a fine addition to the House of Gartul!"

A fine sheen of sweat suddenly appeared on Kyp's forehead. "Gartul, I've known your daughter for," he raised his arm and looked at his wrist chrono, "a whopping twenty-two hours! She's strong-willed, feistier than a Dathomiri and is pretty damned smart. We spent a lot of last night discussing Klingon philosophy along with some of your literary works and someone named Shakespeare. In time-"

"In time?" Gartul interrupted. He threw his hands into the air and groaned. "Kyp, the time is now! Do not think like a human, here." He brought his right hand up to chest-level and clenched it, a grin on his face. "Think like a Klingon!" Before Kyp could do anything, Gartul's smile widened, baring his sharpened teeth. "Of course, if you do anything to hurt my daughter, Force or no Force, I'll skin you alive and make sure you feel every second of it," he said, poking Kyp lightly in the chest. "Have fun!"

Kyp's green eyes darted back and forth, a smile trying to form on his lips and failing miserably. He took a few steps back to the door. "I'll keep that in mind," he said. "I'm going to go talk to Jaroul, now. Just talk." He thumped his chest again as the door slid open, allowing him to turn and run out of Gartul's office.

Gartul let a smile play across his mouth. "Ah, youth. Sometimes they can't see the fleet for the ships."
*****

Please read and review. Up!
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Re: Aggressive Negotiations. SW/SW

Postby Vic » Thu Nov 11, 2010 11:31 pm

All right, now I like Gartul.
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Re: Aggressive Negotiations. SW/SW

Postby stitch626 » Mon Nov 22, 2010 4:59 pm

I am really liking this. The characters are so... well done. Thats the only thing I can come up with. Everything about them is amazing.

Striker, have you thought about an attempt at publishing?
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