The Chu’unthor Incident
by AJ Marks
King Hevon watched as Master Yoda walked into his chamber. He wondered if the Jedi had gotten any leads yet. His own intelligence had failed at trying to find the location of his daughter. They also did not know why the group had kidnapped her either or why they had demanded what they did.
“I heard that you wanted to talk with me Master Yoda,” the king said.
“Yes update you I wanted to,” Yoda said.
“Have you found my daughter,” he asked as he slightly rose up in his chair.
“Not yet, working on that part we are. Feel another group is behind this,” Yoda said then asking a question. “Is there anyone who has been hostile lately to your people?”
“No one that I can think of, that is a question for my military commanders, they would have a much better understanding of who and specific threats made against the kingdom. I only have a report f it is deemed important,” the king replied.
Yoda indicated that he would and wondered if there was someone in the military that could be behind everything. It was not uncommon for a military person to try a coupe for personal gain. He wondered if that was the case here, or if there was another race behind this. Which ever it was, it was becoming apparent to Yoda that the mission was more complex than he had first thought.
“I’ll do anything to get her back, I’ve even been thinking of giving up the throne,” the king said.
“Too early for that it is, only when they give a date do we consider it,” Yoda told the worried king.
“I guess you’re right,” the king said with a sigh, he was not sure how long he would be patient with his daughter in danger.
“Do everything to ensure your daughter’s safe return we will,” Yoda promised the king. He had sensed that the king was at the point to giving into the demands of the kidnappers. Yoda decided that he would remain with the king to make sure that the king did not do something foolish.
“I thank you Master Jedi,” the king said then Yoda retreated to talk with the rest of his team.
Yoda walked into his room where everyone but Xara and Bri were waiting. Yoda noticed that Cal had a frown on his face as he took in who was missing. Yoda already knew what he would say. Xara’s mission would have to be kept a secret from everyone else. He did not suspect Osti or Gini to be the Jedi involved and Kint had been a long time friend. Markus was still learning and even to Yoda, who did not want to accept the fact of another Jedi taking a different path, he knew that the possibility was there.
“I have your missions ready,” Yoda said to the group.
“Where’s Bri and Xara, are they not supposed to be here as well,” Cal said with a barely noticed sneer.
“Already know their mission they do,” Yoda said to the group. He knew that only he and Kint knew what their true mission was.
“Are we going to know what it is so we don’t interfere,” Cal said and Yoda had to agree with the man on this question.
“The king’s daughter has been kidnapped, find them Xara will, help me Bri will,” Yoda said.
“So what are we going to be doing,” Osti asked wondering what else eh would be doing besides running interference between Bri and Cal.
“Another group is behind this, find them we must,” Yoda said to the group. “That is your mission. Try diplomatic measures Bri and I will.”
“Do we have any leads or clues as to where to look,” Osti asked, this would be more to his specialty.
“The king did not, but his intelligence might,” Yoda replied. “All five of you will work on that.”
Markus was a bit surprised at that. The padawan had not been expecting that he would be separate from his teacher and he looked questioningly at Yoda.
“Pair with Osti you will in your mission,” Yoda said to his padawan. Markus suddenly understood why he was there. Yoda wanted him part of the team to help keep an eye on Cal, the mission of finding another group was secondary to him.
“I understand master,” Markus said and Yoda knew that his padawan understood the mission.
“Cal and I will pair up and the three of you will form another group for this quest. I suggest that Cal and I talk with the intelligence group and gather the necessary information and allow you three to research what leads we find,” Kint said forming a plan in his mind. They would be able to keep an eye on Cal and do their mission at the same time.
“We should probably go now,” Cal said. He had his own agenda and it involved revenge against Xara, anyway he could get it. He knew that with the two of them separated that he would be able to track Xara down, and then it would be just him and her.
“Yes, we might not have much time before the kidnappers begin to change their demands, or the consequences,” Osti said. That was one thing that Yoda hoped remained unchanged until Xara was able to complete her mission. At the end of it they would know more about who was behind everything.
Kint and Cal dismissed themselves and walked out heading to the intelligence agency to begin their hunt for information.
“So what does Bri think about us running interference between her and Cal,” Osti asked Yoda.
“Respect my judgment she has, and still recovering she is,” Yoda replied and Osti and Markus looked at Yoda until he gave in. “Not happy she was, but understands she does.”
Osti gave a smile knowing that Bri would not have agreed with what was going on unless she was talked into it. He did wonder what the connection between Bri and Xara was. There were a few rumors around the Jedi temple about her even though such things were forbidden. The official statement from the council was that Xara was a bounty hunter who was now permanently assigned to Bri and they had so far made a good team.
There were the other rumors, saying that Bri and Xara were more than partners, perhaps even lovers. Other Jedi had lovers, and they came and went. The Jedi had learned that to suppress such things was unhealthy, but it was also not encouraged either and Jedi were taught to control themselves in this area. They had forbidden marriage, except for a few exceptions; there were a few Jedi marriages that had been allowed.
“Cal was not happy when Bri and Xara did not show up,” Gina said speaking up for the first time. “I felt him. Something’s going on with him.”
“Felt nothing I did,” Yoda replied.
“I’m sorry master, it was elusive. He was trying very hard to control it, except for the end, he liked where he was going,” Gina said.
“Then we must keep an eye on him,” Osti said. “I’ve learned that my sister has great abilities to feel when something is going on with another person.”
“I don’t read their minds brother, I just feel it when something is wrong, or they are really happy,” Gina said.
“Then an eye on Cal we will keep,” Yoda said and watched as the group agreed.
Xara heard the knock on their door that brought her from her blissful sleep. She slowly became aware of her surroundings. There was a warm weight on her chest and warm breath on going across her chest. It almost made her forget what had woken her up when another knock came on the door.
Glancing down she noticed that Bri was snuggled into her side and Xara could feel where their skin make contact all they way down her body. Slowly extracting herself she make her way out of the bed and grabbed a robe to cover herself. She watched as Bri frowned in her sleep and reached out for her, then grabbed the pillow that Xara had used and curled around it taking a deep breath and falling back into slumber.
Shaking her head she walked over to the door. She had an idea of who it was and opened it up to reveal Yoda standing there. She indicated that Bri was asleep and went out into the hallway to talk with Yoda.
“Got her to rest did you,” Yoda said saying nothing about how Xara was dressed.
“Yeah, I learned that if I join her then we both get a little sleep. She also sleeps heavier than I do, so she will sleep for a while longer. What happened at the meeting,” Xara said wondering why the small Jedi was there.
“Told them their missions I did. Did not tell them about yours,” Yoda said and they both knew that if something happened then she would essentially be alone. “Trust Osti and Gina I do, but could not risk it at this time.”
“I understand,” Xara said.
“Markus is with them and Master Kint is with Cal,” Yoda replied.
“Just like you said they would be paired. What else is up,” Xara said.
“Gina said that Cal is feeling strange. She was not able to pinpoint what she felt,” Yoda said. “Unhappy he was that your were not at the meeting.”
“Or he’s up to something, be careful,” Xara said to Yoda.
“Be telling you that I should,” Yoda said with as they both smiled.
“I’m going to begin my assignment tonight, watch Bri carefully, her ribs give her trouble when she move to quickly still,” Xara said.
“I will, may the Force be with you,” Yoda said.
“And with you as well Master Yoda,” Xara said then went back inside her room.
Xara walked over and sat down next to Bri as she wondered about the best way to approach the situation. She really had no idea as to what the kidnappers expected her to do. She just hoped that they did not expect her to have a plan of some sort. She felt like she had no information about what was going on.
Bri gave a slight stir causing Xara to forget what she was thinking about as she watched her soulmate. Bri’s strawberry-blonde hair was all around her head and Xara knew that she would have some bad hair when she woke up. Xara reached out and stroked
Bri’s hair letting the silkiness run through her fingers. Xara watched as a small smile appeared on Bri’s face.
Green eyes popped open heavy with sleep looking right at Xara. Xara was still amazed at what one person’s eyes could do to her.
“How was the nap,” Xara said giving Bri a soft kiss.
“I didn’t think that I needed anymore sleep, but I was wrong. I feel wonderful,” Bri replied with a stretch. “Did I miss anything?”
“Master Yoda was here, just wanted to let us know that he informed the rest of the team of their assignments. I’m going to try and figure out what’s the best approach to my informant,” Xara told Bri. “Yoda also said that he did not say exactly what my mission was to the rest of the group. He also said that Gina picked up something strange from Cal, nothing she could pinpoint, but there was something there. Be careful with him around.”
“I will,” Bri said wondering if Xara needed the same message. “You too.”
“Always,” Xara said with a smile as she gave Bri another kiss.
“What time is it,” Bri asked as her stomach growled.
“Almost supper time,” Xara replied. “I wonder if the king will have anything in the dining hall tonight or if we will have to go to the kitchen again.”
“Master Yoda did not say anything about it,” Bri asked.
“Nope, so I guess that we are on our own tonight,” Xara said glancing down at Bri where the sheet had uncovered her breasts.
“Boy am I hungry,” she said with a stretch raising her arms over her head in a sensual stretch.
“You’ll be the main course if you keep that up,” Xara said as she used everything she had not to ravish the small Jedi. Instead she grabbed a robe and threw it at Bri.
“Spoil sport stretch,” Bri said to Xara as she got up out of the bed. Without using the robe she walked to the bathroom with a sway in her hips that she knew would keep Xara’s eyes on her, well at least her ass, but on her. She gave a sexual over the shoulder glance at Xara when she got to the bathroom door and announced that she was going to take a shower before dinner. Then she closed the door.
Xara finally blinked her eyes after the teasing that Bri had just done to her. She gratefully sat down on the bed as she tried to get her heart rate under control at what Bri had just done to her. Sometimes she just did not understand where Bri got that teasing attitude, not that she was complaining.
Bri meanwhile had to rest against the door. She thought she was going to faint when she glanced into those smoldering blue eyes before going into the bathroom. She would have never guessed that one look could set such a fire in her.
Starting the shower she set the water temperature on cold to see if she could put out the fire in her body. Bri was glad that she had no bandages on to prevent her from enjoying a shower or a bath if she chose to have on later on. She was sure that if Xara would have joined her if she had asked, but there were things that they needed to do.
Finishing her shower Bri got out and dried herself off then realized that she had no clothing in the bathroom, not that it was a problem with Xara. Bri listened carefully in case there was someone else in the room, like Master Yoda before she walked out of the room.
Xara was sitting in a chair going over her weapons and making sure that they would be in good condition when she noticed a towel wrapped Bri come walking out of the bathroom. Xara smiled to herself as she eyed the beauty of her soulmate.
“Forget something,” Xara asked as she watched Bri.
Bri turned to look at Xara, she was already dressed and she wondered if she should reply or not. Bri looked inside her bag only to find it empty. With a glance and a bit of a glare she marched over to where Xara was.
“It seems like someone had a good time while I was in the shower,” Bri said. “Where did you put my clothes?”
“I thought that you liked walking around naked, so I tossed your clothes out,” Xara said with a straight face but did not look up either.
Bri opened her mouth then closed it. Xara was playing a joke on her; well two could play that game. She took the towel off and began to walk over to where her lightsaber was. Picking it up she then started towards the door.
“You’re not going out like that,” Xara asked wondering what Bri was up to.
“Well, someone threw out all of my clothing, so yeah,” Bri replied still walking towards the door.
“Where will you put your lightsaber,” Xara thought thinking that she had the smaller woman this time.
“Where do you think,” Bri said with a smile on her face and Xara just about choked with that. “Are you okay,” Bri said as she quickly walked back over to the coughing Xara and gave her a pat on the back.
“Ah, yeah. Guess I should have seen that one coming,” Xara said with a smile then handed Bri her clothing. “I wasn’t expecting you to say that.”
“I did walk into the bathroom teasing you the entire way, so I deserved it as well,” Bri said with a smile and they both knew that the other could take a joke. “Well, shall we go and make an appearance,” Bri said tying the belt around her tunic and clipping her lightsaber on it.
“Why not,” Xara said as she stood up and help Bri straighten out her tunic. “Do all Jedi just wear shades of brown?”
“Yeah,” Bri said. “We have a few other clothes for forested areas, but usually we wear this for identification.”
“There, lets get going,” Xara said as she gave Bri a hug from behind.
They walked out of the room and headed towards the dining room. Bri wanted to just hold Xara hand but had to restrain herself for fear that it would put Xara’s mission at risk. That was something she did not willing to do, she wanted Xara to return safely back to her.
“Everything will work out,” Xara said giving Bri’s back a brief rub. She could feel that Bri was tense about something. After a few seconds Xara realized what it was and went to reaffirm the younger woman.
Xara was more concerned about Bri than she was her part of the mission. As far as she was concerned Cal was a greater threat than anyone else in the group.
Walking into the dining room they were greeted by the rest of the team. The king was sitting at the head of the table with Master Yoda and Kint sitting close to him. There were a couple of empty seats next to Yoda, then Markus. Cal was on the other side and at the end after Osti and Gina.
Xara watched Cal carefully and was not disappointed when the man stared at her for a second when they sat down.
“I see that you have finally graced us with your presence Master Bri,” Cal said. Xara was sure that it was a sarcastic comment but she could prove anything yet.
Bri did not allow the comment to faze her as she sat down at her seat. Xara sat down next to her and they were immediately served with plates from the kitchen. Xara noticed that the same woman who she had talked to earlier in the kitchen had served them. The older woman smiled at Xara and left.
“I see that you have made a friend in my head chief, not an easy thing to do,” the king said. “She bosses me around more than anyone else since my wife died five years ago.”
“I ran into her in the kitchen when grabbing something to eat earlier in the day,” Xara replied not saying what they had talked about.
“You did not come here did you,” he said and watched as she nodded her head no. “Then you made a friend. She hates when guest expect to be served at all times. She’ll serve them, but just don’t expect the best food,” he said with a smile on his face.
“I heard that,” a voice said from the kitchen and the king winced.
“Just protecting your image,” he yelled back then turned back to his guests. “She’s the best cook in on the planet, and it’s not wise to insult the one that feed you.”
All the head at the table agreed with the king’s statement. If you wanted good food then you treated your employees with the respect that they deserved, and if you did not then expect to get bad tasting food.
“Have you learned anything,” Bri asked Kint after a few moments of silence in the conversation.
“Nothing that would be enough to cause concern, but we are looking into the government of Yannih, they would gain the most by a disruption in the Sissisian production of food. They have also been aggressively expanding their territory,” Kint replied to Bri’s question.
“It will be interesting to see what comes up with that investigation,” Xara said.
“Yes it will, some of these groups have had major clashes in the past, and some look like they have never stopped,” Osti replied.
“How many groups are we investigating,” Bri asked curious as to the number and the reasons why the feuds were still going on.
“We figure that there are about thirty groups that warrant investigation, but the focus is on the Yannih system,” Kint replied.
“I haven’t heard anything from them in a long time,” the king stated. The last formal contact between the two worlds was to negotiate a peace over a hundred years ago. They were both members of the Republic so he was not sure why they would be behind any of this.
The rest of the meal went by with casual talk and the occasional glances between Xara and Cal. Cal would make sure no one was looking when he stared at Xara. If he could he would have burned a whole in her head, but the look that was returned was just as intense.
Gina, however, could feel the emotions pouring through Cal and it made her nervous. She had never experienced anything like this before, especially from another Jedi. She had tried to see what Cal was looking at when she felt the emotions and only saw him looking at his plate. She would have to talk with her brother on this one for sure.
Bri and Xara finished their meal and Xara suggested that Bri try some exercises to see how her ribs were healing. She had been sleeping a bit today and she wanted to make sure that Bri was able to protect herself for when she was not there.
Bri stretched a bit to test her ribs and found that they did not hurt so she accepted Xara’s challenge. They bid the rest of the group a good night and walked out to and area that the king said they could use for practice.
Cal’s eyes followed them out and watched as Xara put an arm around Bri and he felt a surge of jealousy come over him. No one should be touching Bri but him he thought.
Gina just about jumped up with emotion that Cal sent out. She hastily got up and said that she was not feeling well and that she was going to retire for the day.
“Are you all right,” Osti asked becoming concerned at his sister’s appearance.
“Just really tired brother,” Gina replied with a silent look at her brother.
“Of course sis, I’ll see you in a bit,” Osti said then sat back down at the table. Yoda and Kint watched the interaction with an experienced eye, and saw the subtle interaction between the siblings.
Kint made eye contact with Yoda and knew that their thoughts were along the same lines. Kint would go with Cal while Yoda found out what was going on with Gina. They both figured that it had to do with her sensitivity to others feelings. Yoda then knew that it was a mistake to put Gina so close to Cal with Bri and Xara in the same room.
Bri and Xara walked out among the night sky and into the brightly lit practice area that the king had recommended. Looking around they could see a few other practicing fencing, and ancient art of balance and deadly forms.
Bri shed her robe and loosened up a bit while Xara did the same. They then approached the center of their area.
“Ready,” Xara said as her red blade sprung to life.
“Lead on,” Bri said as her own green blade came to life as well.
Xara went on offensive testing Bri’s reflexes and looking at her face to make sure that she was hurting the younger woman. Xara wanted to make sure that Bri’s ribs would not hurt her in case she had to defend herself against Cal.
Bri deflected Xara’s attack and remained on the defensive. She knew that Xara was testing her ribs and not her abilities. There was a slight pull from the area, but no pain was associated with it so Bri was pleased.
Xara escalated her attack until they were both going the best they could against each other. The sounds of the lightsabers hissing and clashing together attracted a small crowd who had never seen such a thing before. The green and red blades were doing a deadly dance that made all of the bystanders nervous.
They did a cool off routine then called it quits. Both of them had a light sheen of sweat covering them but Xara was pleased with the way Bri’s injuries had healed.
“Did you have any pain,” Xara asked.
“Just a slight pull but nothing painful,” Bri replied. “You’ve gotten better,” she said smiling at Xara.
“I haven’t been relaxing in bed for the past couple of days,” Xara replied.
“Right, like I had a choice with that,” Bri said. “Come on stretch, I hear a bath calling my name.”
“Really, that’s some hearing you’ve got there my Jedi,” Xara replied in a teasing voice.
“Very funny stretch,” Bri replied. “Maybe if you’re good I’ll allow you to wash my back.”
“What are we waiting for,” Xara replied walking faster pulling Bri along with her.
They entered their room and the door was closed. Bri followed Xara into the bathroom where their clothing was quickly discarded and the tub was filled with warm water. It did not take long before they were both in the tub. Bri was leaning on Xara who was busy washing Bri’s back.
“This feels good,” Bri said as Xara had moved from washing to massaging. “We’ll have to switch so I can do you in return.”
“Nope, I’m enjoying this,” Xara said as she felt her soulmates smooth skin. It was something she hoped she never got tired of.
“When are you going to leave,” Bri asked not really wanting to ask that question.
“A bit later tonight,” Xara replied. “I may not go anywhere tonight, it might just be a meeting. Either way I need to make an appearance.”
“I know,” Bri replied.
They reluctantly got out of the tub and dried off. Bri knew that Xara would be heading out and she was not sure if the tall woman would be back tonight. They had talked about the possibilities, but now that she was faced with them she was not sure she liked what was going on. What had seemed like a simple rebellion had turned into a complex web involving a plot against the Jedi on the Chu’unthor, and an attempted framing of Xara for it.
Bri walked into the room to see Xara getting dressed in her now familiar black outfit. Her lightsaber was hooked on her belt. She turned when Bri walked into the room.
“May the Force be with you stretch,” Bri said as Xara walked to her.
“With you as well my Jedi,” Xara replied giving Bri a kiss on the cheek and then left to find the Sissisian who had talked with her earlier.
Osti walked into the room that he was sharing with his sister. He had excused himself from the table as soon as he was able after she left. He knew that something was bothering her, and he was going to find out what it was.
His sister was sitting on the bed meditating when he walked in. She glanced up and knew that it was time to talk.
“Are you alright,” he asked her first wanting to make sure that she was indeed feeling well.
“Too much interaction with Cal brother,” Gina replied.
“What happened,” he asked as he sat down next to her. This might be something that he would have to report to Master Yoda.
“Everything was fine until Master Bri and Xara walked into the room. It was then that Cal just seemed to change. I felt hostility from him towards Xara. It was so intense that it scared me Osti,” she said looking at him.
“I knew that they did not like each other, but this is a dangerous path for Cal to be taking. He could be bordering on the Dark Side,” Osti replied.
“There’s a bit more as well,” she said as her brother looked at her patiently. “When they left Cal had another emotion, I thought I felt jealously. I’m not sure that Bri is safe from his anger,” she told him.
“Then I think that perhaps we need to talk with Master Yoda tonight,” Osti said as they left their room in search of the small Jedi Master.
It did not take them long to find Master Yoda as he was walking to his room. He looked up when Osti and Gini came walking toward him and he knew that they were there to talk with him.
“Master Yoda, we need to talk,” Osti said watching as Yoda nodded his head and suggested that they talk in his quarters. They walked there and went inside.
“Now what are you here to talk with me about,” Yoda said already having an idea as to why they were there. He would just have to wait to see what Gina had felt during the dinner. He had an idea that it had to do with Cal, Xara and Bri.
“Gina thinks that there might be a problem between Cal and Xara and Bri,” Osti said.
“Felt something she did,” Yoda said correctly guessing the problem when Gina nodded her head.
“Yes Master Yoda,” Gina replied then restated what she had told her brother. Yoda sat listening while Gina explained everything she had felt. When she was done Yoda rubbed his chin and thought about what she had just said.
“Felt anything from Xara did you,” he asked wondering if anything was going on with her as well that he should know about.
“No, I did not,” Gina said. “My senses were overwhelmed by Cal.”
“Is there a possibility of Cal hurting Bri,” Osti said voicing his concerns.
“A Jedi is aware of all things. Be alert we must be,” Yoda said as he thought about it. Gini had felt things in Cal that made him worried about the Jedi’s mental stability. If Cal was having Dark Side thoughts it could jeopardize the entire mission, and even lead Cal towards the teachings of the Sith.
“Your mission on keeping an eye on Cal now has priority over the mission. Let me know if you lose him at all,” Yoda said.
“We will Master Yoda, where is your padawan now,” Osti asked curious as to why the young man was not with Yoda.
“With Kint and Cal right now,” Yoda said. “He is studying hard and has made much strides lately,” which was true. Ever since Markus’ encounter with Xara he had been an even better student. He appeared to have gotten over whatever was holding him back.
“We will see you in the morning,” Osti said as they retired for the night.
End Part 7