The City in the Sunset
This job would be crazy. The building, much less the city was impenetrable. Corellia has been a battleground for over six months, with both the Sith and the Republic fighting over control of it. That idiot Sith Lord had to find my family. I've spent years trying to cover my tracks, to cover my past at the Imperial Academy. I should have known better than trying to hide from Goldvanius. That man is too crazed to escape. He has his "League of Shadows" scattered everywhere. I was foolish to even settle down, they would have found me eventually. Because of me, my sweet Lera, the love of my life is dead. If I just stayed away from her, she would be alive right now. But if I did, we never would have had Riya. She is my everything. If Goldvanius hadn't nabbed her, I wouldn't be going anywhere near Corellia. That bastard. If I make it out of this alive, I'll find a way to make him suffer.
I went over to 3Z's charging station and powered him up. That poor droid and I have been through so much together. "Master?", said 3Z. "Where are we going?".
We're headed to Coronet City, 3Z. Goldvanius wants us to take the governor's tower. Apparently he has the last remaining supply of the goldium mineral in the galaxy. "Shall I send us into hyperspace, master?", the droid asked. "Sure, let's go".
The scrappy little droid turned on the hyperdrive, and we went off. Riya, I love you. I'll get you back soon.
I had 3Z take my ship out of hyperspace just outside Corellia's orbit. The Sith had put a blockade around Corellia to prevent anyone from getting in or out. If I even came close to the planet's orbit, we'd be shot at. Stupid Goldvanius couldn't even get us an Imperial sanctioned ship. It's HIS blockade essentially. But of course he didn't help with this. It'd be too easy He likes to see people suffer in his sick little games. Well, that's just one reason. I'm sure the rest of the Empire wouldn't approve of his little experiments, which is probably what this "goldium" is going to be used for. It probably isn't even officially called that. I bet he just named it after himself, that narcissist. Thinking about that bastard won't get me any closer to my daughter, though. I turned my attention to the blockade, and how to surpass it.
There were at least 5 Sith cruisers and a bunch of starfighters around the planet. It would be a tough act to pull off, even with a cloaking device, which we didn't have. I was completely out of ideas.
"3Z, any ideas on how to get past these Imps?", I asked. "Master, I recommend not even trying. Getting anywhere near them in this type of ship would surely mean our deaths. However, I know how much is at stake with Riya. I think it would be best if we were to just fly the ship straight into the atmosphere. If we get hit, so be it. We either die, or Riya dies."
He was right. There was no other option. I pushed forward on the ship's throttle and closed my eyes. I could feel us enter the atmosphere. For a moment, I could hear nothing but the ship descending. Then, all of the sudden, we were barraged with countless amounts of blaster fire. I could feel the engine go out, with our speed suddenly stopping. I hit my head against something, and blacked out. All the while, I could still feel us rapidly plummeting to the ground.
I awoke in a smokey haze. 3Z was standing next to me, scanning me for injuries. "Your vitals appear to be normal, and there seem to be no injuries. We are extremely lucky", he said. "I wouldn't quite call it luck...", I said. I heard a group of starfighters flying above us. They tracked the wreckage. "3Z! Take cover!" I opened up a secret container in the floor of the cockpit and jumped in, quickly dragging him inside as well." I put the cover back on just seconds before we were berated with another round of blaster fire. This was their precautionary wave. After shooting us out of the sky, they wanted to make sure we were dead. The first round would be starfighters shooting us from above, then they would drop a team on-foot to inspect the craft. We would have to stay inside this container until the starfighters left. We would make our move between the two waves.
"3Z, here's the plan", I said. "After the starfighters fly off, we'll get outside the ship. You'll place grenades around the ship, and I'll be up top with my sniper rifle. When the troops get near I'll shoot the grenades."
"Brilliant plan master, but may I suggest one slight improvement?", said 3Z. "I suggest that I spill our engine fuel around the grenades. The ship is totaled anyway, we have no use for it."
I smiled deviously. "Brilliant. This is just like the old days".
"It certainly is", he said with a smug inflection.
After a few minutes, the starfighters flew away, and we got to work. I climbed to the top of the wreckage, and began to set up my rifle. 3Z zipped around the field was such ease. Being a droid, he hadn't lost an ounce of his skill. I envied him. It's been years since I've even worked a sniper rifle. I thought I'd put all this behind me when I married Lera.
Within a minute, 3Z had everything in place, and hid behind the ship. Not long after, the Imperial troopers appeared. I was a bit worried. My targeting skills were rusty, I hadn't practiced in over two decades. As they approached, I shot a grenade and lit up the entire field. Everything in front of my ship was ablaze. We had planned to put those Imperials right in the middle of the blaze, but I shot too early. None of them were injured. They were blocked from us, however.
We took this opportunity to get away, on foot. With luck, the starfighters would be busy with other business.
4: The City in the Sunset
Since the ship crashed (and was subsequently totaled by the starfighters), we had no other means of transport except walking. This meant that it would take us the rest of the day to get to Coronet City. As we walked farther and farther away from the wreckage, it seemed like the cloud of smoke from our little escapade got larger and larger. This could be why no starfighters came to find us. Most of the Imperial forces were probably trying to put out our fire!
"3Z, do you think Riya will be okay? Like, if we fail, do you think Goldvanius will let her be?"
"Hard to say, master. I would like to think that she would be let free, but Sith's tend to be sadists. I know it may not sound good, but it's the truth. We are the only hope she has."
"So we can't fail.", I said, probably more for myself than for 3Z.
We walked for hours and hours. It felt like days, but we were only just coming upon sunset when I began to see a large group of starships hovering high in the air. Anything below them was blocked from view by a tall hill. Did we make it? It was hard to say. I rapidly climbed to the top of the hill, and what I saw was breathtaking.
Coronet was a vision of beauty. Millions of gigantic buildings lining the coast, all made of glass. The sunset was reflected upon each of them time and time again, with a beautiful orange glow surrounding the entire city. Starships did not just zoom by with an air of urgency. They too seemed to be caught in the trance of this mesmerizing city. They seemed to float in the air like a cloud, their pilots admiring the scenery just as I was.
How could a city of such beauty be the center of such chaos? Surely even the Sith must be entranced by such beauty. But of course they are not. Goldvanius wants me to take control of the building right in the center of it all, to kill all inside. And for what? A stupid shipment of metal, but I had to do it. Riya's life was at stake.
And so, I walked down the coast and into the city, The City in the Sunset.