Part 1

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Once upon a time, in a galaxy far far away ...

Following the Battle of Yavin and the destruction of the Death Star, a new hope has been kindled in the universe. The Evil Empire is not all powerful. The Rebel Alliance has shown that it is possible to stand up for freedom and against oppression. Across the galaxy there are stirrings of resistance to the Empire.

Even in the heart of the Empire's industrial infrastructure there is unease and a willingness to question the word of the Emperor and his forces of oppression. One such place is the Imperial dockyard on Malykan, a system of the Inner Rim.

The ship shuddered as it came out of hyperspace. The battle damage it had sustained made handling difficult and it felt like at any moment the drives might fail.

Jana Yaku could think of simpler ways to die than taking on the mission the Rebel Alliance had assigned her. To be fair to them, she had volunteered and she was the only pilot (she thought) that could pull this off. But still ... she regretted her decision now.

The mechs on Yavin had patched up the ship has best they could. The whole point was that it was supposed to be battle-damaged—that was her cover story, but Jana wished that the Rebels who'd knocked this ship out hadn't been quite as thorough in their work. That's ironic, as it was her, in a Y-Wing bomber who'd disabled the Imperial Reaper class Escort frigate. Two proton torpedoes had ripped large holes in the frigate—one just forward of the engines and one taking out the Frigate's bridge. Twisted metal and plastiglass had been bent and welded back into shape by the Engineers on Yavin, but where Jana sat on the bridge was still an uncomfortable and unnatural place to be.

"This is Malykan HQ. Reaper-class Frigate, The Ravager, please acknowledge."

She sighed. She knew it wouldn't be long until she got a challenge from the Imperial Navy. After all Malkyan had to be one of the most intensely militarized parts of the Inner Rim, given the Imperials built a large number of ships and weapons there.

"This is The Ravager, we acknowledge."

"Ravager, please pass security credentials through a tight-beam for verification."

Security credentials? Nope she didn't have any of those. Of course they knew they'd be asking for them—especially after Yavin, but the plan had been to bluff their way through.

"Sorry Malykan HQ, we don't have any current credentials. We've been in communications lock down since Yavin." She winced. Sorry? Imperials don't apologize.

"That's most irregular, Ravager, we have no report of this. We're going to send out some ties and a Shuttle to meet you. You will maintain your current position."

Jana was her own worst critic, but at that moment she wasn't surprised that one of her crew-members chipped in as well. "Slick, very slick, Jana," came the voice of Ewash Kiin over the intercomm. "I'll get the beers and pretzels laid out for our party guests shall I?"

Jana groaned. "I'm sorry, guys," she spoke over the open channel so that all of the crew could hear—Ewash in the Engine Room, Pilkay in the Weapons Hub, and Nawacka, the Wookie mechanic whose job it was to keep the damaged frigate running. A skeleton crew for a ship that normally boasted seventy (although that did include a platoon of Imperial Navy troopers). Plus their one passenger would probably be listening in. She kept herself to herself for the whole journey, but had taken up almost permanent residence in the Ravager's canteen. She needed the space she said—something to do with those weird weapons she had with her and some mumbo-jumbo about a mystical power.

Jana sighed again and then collected her thoughts. They were going to have to do something about the boarding party sent out to intercept them. She addressed the crew again. "We have about twenty minutes before they reach us, let's all meet in the canteen now to discuss plans."

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