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Updated: Mar 18, 2023

The two warships dropped out of warp short of the mining colony. "Engage the cloak" Lexi ordered and the small black raptor rippled out of sight as quickly as it appeared. With the colony buried deep within a volatile asteroid field, the raptor was the only one of the the two ships able to approach and so they eased forwards while Dronurr's Negh'Var stalked around the perimeter.

"This doesn't feel right..." Lexi commented through the tense quiet of the bridge, "...Where are they?" She spun in her seat towards the comms officer, "Signal Dronurr for a status upda-" "Brace!" The pilot suddenly called out - cutting her off - while hitting the impulse afterburner. As he did the small cloaked raptor launched into a sharp barrel roll around a rogue asteroid.

The burn of the engine glowed bright beyond their cloak and as the ship settled back into a cruise Lexi glared at the pilot, "Incompetent P'takh! If I wanted to give our position away I'd have sent up a damn flare!". The pilot stammered nervously, "I... I had to Captain; the... the asteroid..." Lexi snarled and pulled the blade from her hip; launching it across the bridge at the pilot. It embedded in his chest before he had a chance to react, and his body slumped back in the seat. Lexi pointed to one of her Honor Guards, "Take the helm! And somebody get that thing out of here before it starts to stink!".

While a pair of young Bekks came and dragged away the former pilot the comms. Officer called back over, "Captain I can not raise the flag - too much interference. I... think it may be a jamming signal, but impossible to tell" Lexi turned sharp back to the officer before looking to her newly appointed pilot, "Get us back to Dronurr. NOW!" Unlike the former pilot, the Honor Guard now in control did not need telling twice and banked the ship around a passing asteroid with only the faintest ripple to its cloak with the sudden inertia shift.

As they drew clear of the asteroid field, Dronurr's Negh'Var came into view. It sat quiet in empty space on the viewscreen and Lexi turned a questioning look to her comms officer who worked the console furiously to glean anything from it, "Wait... I have something. Putting it up". A highly distorted audio played across the bridge, "...Morm-.... treacherous snake... boarded... -or the Empire!" Throughout the playback it was as interrupted by weapons fire as by static. Lexi looked around the bridge, "Prepare a boarding party. We're going in!"

Lexi and her Honor Guard materialized in one corner of the Negh'Var's bridge with rifles at the ready. Outside, their raptor shimmered briefly as it hung just a few metres below the belly of the larger ship; the cloak briefly disrupted by the boarding action. However with their ship sat close within the Negh'Var's shield, they knew it would evade detection.

They looked around the empty bridge but nothing beyond the still smoking disruptor burns around the room gave any indication of things being wrong. Moving silently throughout, Lexi - a pair of Mek'leths in her hands - led her team through the ship; working past the bodies of fallen warriors as they went. She soon found her way into Dronurr's ready room and found him spitting blood in the corner. She holstered her blades and moved to help the aging warrior to his feet while he leaned his weight on the ceremonial bat'leth he wielded, but to no avail.

Dronurr collapsed and looked to Lexi as he knew his failing, "Mormesh..." he coughed out. Lexi - saddened as she was angered at this point - held a firm posture as she laid Dronurr back against his desk, "On my honor you shall be avenged" she declared, wrapping a hand around Dronurr's bat'leth. He laughed heartily, coughing and spitting more blood, "Lexi; my soft, spotty avenger... this... this is a diversion. Save my house... my... family...." he collapsed with a wheeze and his eyes closed. Lexi drew his weapon across his neck, "I will see you in Sto'Vo'Kor my friend and we shall sing of the glorious day when this betrayal is avenged. I promise you I shall not rest until this blade pierces the very soul of every last traitor to our House!" and with that she pulled the blade back across Dronurr's neck, closing her eyes as she fought the natural urge to show soft emotions at his parting, "You died with honor my friend..."

Lexi stood and turned sharply back to her team, who all stood and howled ferociously at the passing of their House leader, "Come" she ordered curtly, "There is nothing left here but empty shells..." with that she tapped on her wristcomp to speak to the raptor, "jol yIchu'!" and the whole team were promptly returned to their ship as it rippled into view midway into a strafing run towards the Negh'Var. The raptor fired a series of torpedoes in quick succession, quickly sparking a chain reaction in the already wounded ship which set of a chain reaction in her warp drive assembly. As the raptor sped away, they were bid farewell by a bright explosion behind them as the core breached and ensured that no scavengers could pick the bones of it's once proud warriors.

Before the small raptor could jump to warp speed however, it was almost halted in it's tracks as another - larger - vessel decloaked directly in it's path...

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