Chapter 1

16K 437 190

***** Please vote if you enjoy the story -- thanks! *****

Kay

The twin suns flamed in the orange sky above Skywalker Enterprises' headquarters, raining heat through soot, smog, and water vapor.  On the horizon, three hulking shuttles approached low in the sky. Minutes dripped by as the shuttles drew nearer, when a roaring pair of security interceptors punctuated the quiet scene. The Skywalker Enterprises logo, SKYE, gleamed a deep blue on the interceptors' sides, as they streaked across the thick, moisture filled air.

Kay began her approach protocol. As Alpha 9, the flight leader of the SKYE interceptors, she made it her business to know what was in her airspace. No one at HQ could find record of a scheduled landing, and shuttles this big would definitely require special clearances. Someone in the company has to know what's going on, Kay told herself. The shuttles were registered to Skywalker Enterprises.

"Identify yourself," Kay ordered.

No response.

"You are ordered to return these cargo shuttles to the SKYE mining camp."

No response.  The squarish bulks lumbered forwarded like giant metal cattle.

Kay flipped channels.  "HQ, what the hell is going on?  We should already know if three SKYE cargo shuttles are missing and be on alert.  And they are way outside legal flight paths - even the Rodian autori should have notified us by now."  

"Copy that.  We have no idea Alpha team, we're investigating that as we speak." A brief pause, and then the order Kay was dreading came. "Alpha 9, we cannot allow these cargo ships to get any closer to SKYE HQ.  You have permission to engage."

"Copy that, HQ." Kay flipped channels again.  "Turn your ship around or you will be fired upon."

No response.  

Frustrated, Kay flipped channels again to her wingman. "Let's fire a warning shot, Alpha 6." Alpha team zoomed by the shuttles to take firing positions. Yet as Alpha team's interceptors prepped firing solutions, twin concussion missiles lanced through the amber sky.  Kay's missile lock alarms blared. Her last thought was to realize that the missiles were not fired from the cargo shuttles - they were fired from HQ.

* * *

Owen

Owen Skywalker followed the missile contrails towards three shuttles in the distance. It was terrifying to see SKYE's weapon systems deployed, but he had to trust the security team. They did what they had to do, even if it meant destroying three apparently defenseless shuttles.

He was imagining his father and CEO, Jerod Skywalker, apologizing for the destruction of the shuttles, when the missiles streaked past and annihilated the SKYE interceptors instead. A cold chill worked its way down his spine as the true nature of the situation dawned on him. Someone had taken over the SKYE defense system, and was using it against them.

He started running towards the SKYE security office, and grabbed frantically at the blaster on his hip. Being the son of the CEO gave him certain privileges, but he'd always hoped the blaster would be unnecessary. Now he just hoped it wouldn't be useless.

Owen commed a quick message to his father. SKYE compound under attack. Get Mom and get out. 

He'd talk to dad, only dad would try to convince him to run in the opposite direction. At least Anakin would be safe; he was at a flying lesson or something.

As Owen rounded the bend near Security, he smelled the stench of blaster fire. Owen skidded to a halt and retreated to cover. A handful of green-skinned Rodian security guards were assaulting the security office, who were themselves being assaulted by a pair of Rodian security guards. He wasn't sure who the good guys were, assuming there were any.

STAR WARS: HERALD OF FURYRead this story for FREE!