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Kastor Antilles
Cray


Joined: 14 Jun 2009
Posts: 417

 Post Posted: Wed, June 09th 2010 11:08pm    Post subject: YV-929 Freighter, For Better or Worse
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YV-929 Freighter For Better or Worse




The splash of the clean water to his face brought instant refreshment. Kastor looked up at the somewhat-grimy mirror, visually inspecting the results. The flesh around his cheek and his nose was reddened by blood rushing to the capillaries at the site of the injury, and the remnants of the dried flows of blood remained on the lower portions, but it was good enough. It was a minor injury compared to others he'd received in the past, but it still hurt like hell. He found himself consciously willing himself to breathe through the mouth, but occasionally he would involuntarily inhale through his nose, and it would sting. What a pain.

Sighing, Kastor dried his face, the remainder of the cool moisture pleasantly evaporating from his damp skin and eyebrows. He dabbed the rag on the water spots on the color of his newly-acquired black tee, which replaced his other blood-stained clothing. He liked not having to surround himself in multiple layers, the warm, dry air of the ship almost a luxury. The crew had been sure to inform him that the aging freighter was valued slightly lower than bantha dung, but to Kastor, it was just fine. He'd never experienced space travel before and he guessed he had no great expectations of the vessel. He was not, however, immune to the strange feeling of artificial gravity and inertial dampening. He subconsciously placed a hand on his stomach. He was committed to holding on to what little food he'd managed to scarf down earlier.

He couldn't resist curiously rubbing at his sore nose anyway, although he knew the pain would make him wish he hadn't. It did. He'd gotten off better than some of the others tonight.

Their escape from Mantell had been doubtful after the reinforcements from the Resistance had arrived. There hadn't been much fighting, but instead a lot of running. Kastor didn't like it that way, but he suspected Greth did. Either way, two members of her team had been cut down covering their entry to the spaceport.

He hated the Resistance.

Kastor tried to tell himself they were acting out of self-defense, out of fear and ignorance towards Kastor and Greth. But that was no longer true. Arnolt had savagely killed innocents before; it was well-known, ignored by his brothers-in-arms - though perhaps it was supported by the Elders. And that hulking rapist wasn't an isolated subject, he knew. Kastor knew he had been stupidly deaf and blind to the methods of the Resistance, and perhaps his involvement sickened him more than space travel. He knew his motives were commendable, that he had responded to the circumstances as he needed to, like many others; but he was responsible for not stopping what happened in front of them. It was sad that other good men like Jordin would be unaware, being willing pawns to murderers, in the name of a good cause.

But that Resistance had become worse than the authority which it opposed. That was undeniable. Kastor had looked down on the planet of Ord Mantell from orbit as they blasted away from it. He'd seen pictures of it, but he never imagined such a crapshoot of a world could look so alluring from the outside.

Kastor ran a hand through his damp hair. He wasn't used to thinking like this. He had spent his recent years planning raids and leading men, fighting and infiltrating, thinking up ways to harass his friends back at the camp. It all seemed disgusting now. This sort of consideration wasn't natural for him, but he couldn't get the thoughts out of his head. Maybe he should have been asking these sort of questions, years ago.

He looked away from the industrially-minded sink into the main area of the room. Kastor still wasn't sure what purpose it was supposed to serve. It had a table and uncomfortable-looking chairs and benches in the center, one wall was lined with a pair of bunks, and the rear contained what he recognized as a hyperdrive manifold. He guessed it used to be an engineering area that had developed into a common room, but he had seen nobody else since he entered it. It didn't look particularly used, and he had no inkling if anybody else actually slept here. Kastor had no experience on an actual, working starship, but he thought it accurate to say it was a ramshackle setup. He supposed he'd be sleeping here, though, so he made a note to try to become more familiar with it.

Kastor wet the cloth once more, rubbing it over his face. He heard a door grind open, servos straining just as he moved the towel away. He saw Greth - Agent Celchu, now - entering. Things had been a little tense on the surface recently, but... well, he didn't know how things were now. Hopefully as good as they once were.

He smirked nonetheless, holding the rag in his hand as she approached. Some of the water dripped off of his chin and nose, so he dried it quickly. Then Kastor held up his hands in a playfully-cocky "well, how does that look now?" gesture, awaiting her response to his non-verbal question.




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Greth Celchu
Han


Joined: 11 Nov 2009
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Location: The Zombine

 Post Posted: Thu, June 10th 2010 12:09am    Post subject:
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Greth had sat alone for the initial flight off the planet. Too many things had happened down below - things she hadn't quite understood and needed some time to sort out alone. And it wasn't just the ambiguity of the Resistance and their potential involvement with other parties. Kastor had been a major factor in this whole thing and she was struggling with where to place him. How would he react to life in the Core? Would the government and their people even accept him if they suspected his own involvement with pro-Palpatine groups? His fate was a mystery and she didn't want to be the one to bear him the bad news.

But business aside, he was alluring to her in a way she couldn't fathom. If something did go down once they reached Coruscant, she didn't want her conflicting emotions to get in the way. Either she needed to step down from his case or approach this with a level head. And the only way she was going to calm the torrent of her mind was to actually confront the source and talk to him.

Switching from her winter layers and battle fatigues, Greth now adorned a more comfortable pair of sweats with a matching tank top as she lumbered down the corroded corridor. The freighter they had chosen for their escape had obviously seen better days, but she hadn't been concerned with prestige condition when she had purchased the hulk. It was an operational starship and it would do its job to ferry them back to headquarters. That's all that mattered for the time being.

The illumination panels that served the makeshift crew quarters and 'fresher were flickering brightly and Greth had a hunch that Kastor had found his way in there. Her soft-soled shoes covered her approach and she was able to round the doorframe and glance beyond just in time to see Antilles' beaming face looking back at her. He had cleaned up since their last meeting and despite his face looking quite flushed, he didn't appear all that bad. Perhaps he needed to get clobbered with a blaster rifle more often.

The thought brought a hint of a smile to her face as she propped her body up against the doorframe to get a better view. "Well, what do you know, you clean up pretty good," she pointed out in a mocking tone. "I take it the nose is feeling better?"

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Kastor Antilles
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 Post Posted: Thu, June 10th 2010 01:06am    Post subject:
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A grin crossed Kastor's face. Praise the gods, she was in a good mood. "Yeah, it's not bad," he told a small lie, not wanting her to worry. He crossed the small expanse between them, tossing the towel back towards the sink.

"What about you?" he asked, using the question as an excuse to scan her form. He hadn't taken notice if she had been hurt in the scuffle on the surface. He regretted getting split up, but in the end, it had all worked out. Things usually did happen that way. They had gotten into some pretty close calls before this one - not to such a visible extent, but still dangerous - but they were both still alive. Kastor figured he had to have been doing something right. "Did you get anything off those chips?" He added, not wanted to seem too interested in her personal health.

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Greth Celchu
Han


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 Post Posted: Thu, June 10th 2010 01:42am    Post subject:
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Her own wellbeing was not her main concern and when he poised the question, she just simply shrugged. A potential broken nose was not something to brush off lightly and she came in closer to inspect it as he rattled on with the questions. The least she could do was suck it up and attempt to answer.

"It's too early to tell just yet," she said in response to his inquiry about the datachips. Her eyes remained focused on his nose as she continues to examine him for any more damage. "This bucket doesn't have the equipment necessary to fully digest the information. We'll have to wait until we reach port back on Coruscant."

She stepped back, now fully content that he would survive the injury, but something else was pressing on her mind. "But I need to warn you, it may be a rough start. If we can make a conclusive link between your 'ex-people' and the Imperial resistance groups, that may spell trouble for you. I don't know how they'll react." She shrugged, getting to her point. "If they'll trust you."

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Kastor Antilles
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 Post Posted: Thu, June 10th 2010 04:17pm    Post subject:
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He followed her movements as she inspected the injury, just inches away from his face. He smirked faintly, too little for her to notice, amused at her attention. So close, he could see the details of her dark eyes, the amber currents encircling the more obscure chestnut hues. They had been the first thing he noticed when they met.

Kastor knew his face was flushed rose from the impact, but he didn't realize it had subtly intensified since Greth had been just centimeters from him.

She backed away from him after completing her appraisal, rattling on about the reasons the datachips could not be analyzed on the ship. He supposed that was a setback, but it didn't worry him too much; there was so much ahead to do that he no longer wanted to think about the corruption and the shadowy figures behind the Resistance.

What she said next made him furrow his brow and made him rethink his last ruminations. "But I need to warn you, it may be a rough start. If we can make a conclusive link between your 'ex-people' and the Imperial resistance groups, that may spell trouble for you. I don't know how they'll react. If they'll trust you," she said, shrugging. Kastor could read her well enough to tell she was attempting to soften what she betrayed could be a large stumbling block.

"What?" Kastor asked, stalling to overcome his minor bewilderment. "They should trust me after they know what we did together," he managed to say after a moment. He hadn't really been concerned about the New Republic; in fact, even until now, he had been somewhat suspicious of them. He was just going on Greth's word, which he trusted. That had been enough for him.

But now, things were becoming more real. What would he do there, exactly? "If they don't," he began impassively, "I'll find something else to do without them."

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Greth Celchu
Han


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Location: The Zombine

 Post Posted: Thu, June 10th 2010 11:16pm    Post subject:
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Greth widened the distance between them, stepping over to a bench built directly into the bulkhead and sat down with a sigh. She came to the slow realization that Kastor had a simple way of looking at things in this galaxy. It wasn't necessarily his fault and really, it wasn't exactly a bad thing either. It was a product of his upbringing on such a backward world and he didn't know any better. The part that troubled her the most was him having to come to a rude awakening once he witnessed what the galaxy was really capable of. Sometimes, she wished things could be as simple as he made them out to be.

"It may help your case, sure," she agreed, offering a weak smile in an attempt to make this easier. "But there may be other issues. It takes a lot more to build trust than word of mouth. They will probably do a proper background check and keep you isolated for awhile to make sure you weren't some kind of double agent." Her gaze went distant, remembering another time - a more darker time. "Unfortunately, it's a threat we have to deal with almost daily. They don't want to take chances."

Looking across the chamber, it was hard to read Kastor's expression, but he managed to conjure up a response anyway. "If they don't," he started impassively. "I'll find something else to do without them."

Worry clenched at Greth's chest as she found herself inching forward toward the edge of the bench. Kastor was like a teenager taking his first steps into this galaxy, how would he survive on his own without someone to guide him through? She knew he was more than able to take care of himself, but the prospect of him being on his own didn't sit well with her. "What are you talking about?" she sputtered, trying to keep emotion out of her tone. "Where will you go? What will you do? It's not going to be easy to start out on your own. The galaxy will swallow you up."

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Kastor Antilles
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 Post Posted: Fri, June 11th 2010 03:00am    Post subject:
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Maybe the blow to his head had damaged his ears. Kastor wasn't sure he was hearing correctly. The Republic would have to isolate him and investigate him as a potential double-agent? "Wait a minute," he began, their words overlapping each other. "Wasn't that just what I bailed you out of? And you're going to do it to me?"

She continued talking, striving to be objective, before he could get the words fully out of his mouth. He was trying not to get angry with her, but Greth knew full well what she was saying. She had to have realized the irony.

Kastor felt a pit in his stomach as she continued to speak. The gravity of what he had just done was beginning to fully sink in. He had abandoned everything he knew for this woman and her galactic government. He thought he knew her, but he didn't know a thing about the Republic. What he was beginning to learn, he didn't like.

"The galaxy will swallow you up," Greth concluded.

"I'm not a kid, Greth," Kastor smirked, not out of amusement but out of disbelief. "The galaxy can't throw much at me I haven't seen in some form."

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Greth Celchu
Han


Joined: 11 Nov 2009
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Location: The Zombine

 Post Posted: Fri, June 11th 2010 10:40pm    Post subject:
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The change in Kastor was obvious. Mentioning the steps the Republic would be taking to ensure its own security had been a mistake. It wasn't wrong by any stretch, but for Kastor, it struck home. A similar situation had taken place back on Mantell, only their roles had been reversed. Greth had been the one in trouble and Kastor had come to her rescue. Although she was now safe, it had also been the primary reason for Kastor's exile. She couldn't blame him for such a bitter reaction. After all, she had made the mistake of bringing it up.

"But things are different out there," Greth protested in response to Kastor's insistence to travel on his own. "The galaxy isn't made up of a bunch of hit and run raids like back on Mantell. It's much more complicated and I don't want you to find that out the hard way."

She trailed off, her eyes traveling up the length of his form until they rested on his face. A rift still separated them after he explanation and it could be physcially felt in the stuffiness of the cabin.

"Look," she started again in an attempt to make amends. "Could you just...go along with this? I promise they will treat you with respect and you will not be considered a prisoner. I'll see to that one personally."

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Kastor Antilles
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 Post Posted: Sat, June 12th 2010 03:10am    Post subject:
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He had begun to perceive something in Greth, ever since she had suggested that Kastor join the Republic. She didn't intend it, but Kastor could see it within her nonetheless. It was as if to her, the Resistance's, and Ord Mantell's, struggles were not serious, as if they were a simple game.

It was like she was a star of galactic league smashball, whereas he led a team of minor leaguers in a laughable unimportant match. Maybe the New Republic was more important to the galaxy, of course; but that didn't make Kastor a child, nor did it make him any less capable of dealing with the matters Greth dealt with daily. In fact, maybe it made him more able. "It's not more complicated," Kastor muttered defiantly.

Continuing her plea, Greth implored him to trust her, to go along with her plans. He was less sure of it than he had been before she had entered the room. "Not being a prisoner, that's a good start," he sighed, under his breath. "Glad to see I'll be getting a good welcome." He rubbed his jaw before focusing his eyes on Greth. "You didn't tell me it was gonna be like this."

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Greth Celchu
Han


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 Post Posted: Sun, June 13th 2010 11:19pm    Post subject:
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Guilt washed over Greth as Kastor continued to press the issue. He wasn't exactly taking this how she envisioned and perhaps, she was partly to blame for that. There were certain things she couldn't go into detail about and others she simply couldn't explain. That was just how things worked in the NRI. The problem was, protocol was now costing her a special friendship.

"I couldn't," she said quietly, almost ashamed of her answer. "Not until we were far away from there. Too much was at stake - too many people were listening." She sighed, angling her head down and shaking it. "I'm sorry. I don't want this to seem like I'm using you, because I'm not. It's all about rules and regulations. It makes it difficult to have much of a life outside of your career."

A bittersweet smile formed on her lips as she pushed herself away from the bench. She was becoming sentimental and Greth was anything but a sentimental person. It was dangerous in her line of work.

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 Post Posted: Wed, June 16th 2010 12:33am    Post subject:
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Kastor wasn't sure what to think. Had she deceived him because she thought he wouldn't agree, or had she done it because she didn't trust him? Was she afraid somebody would have found out her goal on the planet, had she told Kastor the full truth? Maybe there was another purpose to Greth's helping him back on Mantell? No, that wasn't it - he had been helping her.

Still, he could feel a hint of sympathy for her admission of regret. Kastor could understand needing to put aside personal opinions to ensure a mission. He just didn't think that the two of them needed to conceal the whole truth in order to make something work.

He still didn't know what to think.

"You seemed to have a pretty good time on the surface," he reminded her with a small grin. "Before our 'mission', anyway." They had had their moments back planetside, but she seemed to have forgotten those times after they had devised the espionage on the Resistance. He didn't know if she had clammed up due to the stress or fear of someone getting killed, and he didn't really ask. He, however, had not forgotten.

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Greth Celchu
Han


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 Post Posted: Wed, June 16th 2010 09:05pm    Post subject:
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Greth stopped before slipping from the little cabin and turned back to stare at him, memories of their shared existence down on the planet coming back to her. It was true that they had managed to have a fairly good time together, despite running for their lives and Greth's initial "stay" within the Resistance camp. It would have been foolish to deny that something hadn't clicked between them - Greth had felt it. What she was now suspicious about was the reason he had so suddenly brought it up. Did he really feel the same way or was he simply using their time together to soften her up in order to exploit her?

No, that was ridiculous, she quickly chided herself with a clenching of her jaw. Before she had the opportunity to dwell on it further, she found herself responding to him.

"What if that was part of the front?" she asked, almost teasing as she narrowed her eyes. "Me hanging out with a ruffian like you?" She scoffed and shook her head, brushing off the crazy notion with a wave of her hand. "You obviously don't know me very well."

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 Post Posted: Mon, June 21st 2010 11:45pm    Post subject:
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"Maybe I don't," Kastor smirked. Behind the grin, however, was a hint of sincerity. Maybe he had acted too rashly, abandoning the people that had essentially accepted and adopted him. It was too late to change that, but he had to view the future more cynically than he had planned. He didn't unconditionally give trust to anybody. If Greth had been withholding things from him before - for whatever reason, be it deception or pity - it was possible she still was. He couldn't know her intent, so he had to be cautious.

Kastor moved backwards to lean against the bunk that he assumed was his. "I don't know if I trust somebody who associates with people like me," he quipped. Despite his doubts about her, Kastor couldn't help but feel comfortable in her presence. "Especially when you don't seem to know me too well either."

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Greth Celchu
Han


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 Post Posted: Wed, June 30th 2010 12:17am    Post subject:
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Trust. This whole thing was over trust. And after everything they had been through, what exactly did that mean? Did Kastor care deeply enough for her to warn her about some hidden secret about his personality? Or was he simply toying with her, much the same way she had been toying with him? Something like that was a mutual gift between friends, but at this point, she wasn't exactly sure that their relationship could be considered that. It was too complicated. Greth felt something for him that she just couldn't explain and his cryptic behavior wasn't helping the situation at all. For the time being, she would treat him like any other recruit...at least, until she could be sure of his intentions.

She quirked a brow, crossing her arms across her chest with a smug expression. "And what exactly am I supposed to know?" she challenged. It was pretty far-fetched to believe that he would actually reveal something, but it was worth a try.

Kastor smiled lazily, no doubt confirming her suspicions that he would not take this seriously. Not yet, anyway. "Well, ignoring the obvious good looks and killer personality," he began smugly. "I'm also good with dogs and enjoy long walks by the ice lake."

It took all of her strength to refrain from laughing out loud. He was good-looking, sure, but it was something else entirely to hear him so full of himself. It was time to bring him down to the proper level. After all, it was dangerous for a new recruit to have such a big ego. "That explains the smell," she retorted, her dark eyes twinkling with mischief. "Although, if you're used to hanging around with wild beasts, you should have no problem fitting in with the rest of intel. Like they always say, they're a bunch of lap dogs."

A flirtatious smiled crept over her features as she stepped away, carefully admiring his reaction. All things considered, he was a simple man, but for a simple man, she sure found herself drawn to him. Maybe it was luck that they had been drawn together...or maybe it was something else.

Whatever the reason, she was content with the outcome. After this evening, she had a feeling she would be learning a lot more about the mysterious Kastor Antilles...and she liked it.

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