Steel Accord

Private When Stars Collide 1x1 (private w/nx9100)

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This galaxy. As if there were others."  Jellico and Faron exchanged a look, as they followed Layton into the hall.  They watched the exchange quietly, then when the others joined them, he waved his officers to take seats.  For himself, he took Senotho's hand.

"Thank you," he said, shaking the other's hand.  "Captain Eric Jellico, U.S.S. Righteous Indignation, United Federation of Planets.  Visitors to...well, let's call it your area of space."  He looked the other over, feeling a sense of ease with him somehow.  "I hope our arrival hasn't caused any concern.  Apparently, we got caught in a pirate attack.  At least, according to Minister Layton," he said, nodding to him.  "I hope our visit can remain a peaceful one."

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“I see no reason why it shouldn’t be.”

Having now shaken hands with the man, Pilgrim was certain of two things. The captain was a good man, and that he and his crew were the source of that massive disturbance in the Force. He couldn’t tell why exactly but the Force moved oddly around them. Like dropping a stone in a river but instead of flowing around it, the water parted around the stone, not touching it. It was very strange and he wondered if it had anything to do with his vision.

As they took their seats Layton tried to regain control of the situation.

“Yes that damnded bureaucrat Moff Stencer couldn’t give a toss about his policing duties and Master Senotho can attest to Governor Gaius not providing me with adequate means to protect the citizenry on or around my moon.”

“The good Minister does speak truth on that matter Captain Jellico. Despite being well within their domain, the Empire’s presence in this sector has grown increasingly lax. Thus the spike in opportunistic pirates such as the ones you encountered. And the my Rangers and I are sitting at this table with you and him and not in a cell or worse.”

Layton was going to object to that but he couldn’t come up with a more artful way of phrasing his situation that just wasn’t a flat out lie.

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Jellico listened carefully, noting the various titles and names being thrown around.  So, Layton is only a local politician, he thought, with a governor and someone called a moff above him.  Sounds like their empire is a big as it's name would imply.  He watched Layton's response to Senotho's comment about his group.  Must not be exactly on the same team.  Interesting.  

Lieutenant Faron leaned forward.  "Captain, if i may?" he asked.  Jellico nodded, and he continued.  "I am curious about your people," Faron said to Layton.  "Honestly, we were a bit surprised to encounter humans here.  I wonder, does your ancestry trace back to a colony ship?  Or some sort of exodus?"

Jellico allowed himself a small smile.  He'd been wondering that himself.  He was glad to have Lieutenant Faron with him to ask the odd questions....

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Layton chuckled a little nervously but he decided to humor them. Again he was trying to get them on his side. The clear reality that he was having trouble doing so where Senotho ingratiated himself so quickly into the situation really says something about the Imperial Academy's diplomatic curriculum, at least Senotho thought so in his admittedly biased perspective.

"Captain, that's one othe oldest questions in the Galaxy. Where did we come from?" He postulated, clearly excluding the non-humans present from that "we." Both Jeeg and Rita were about to say something but Phi kept them both quiet and Creel just grunted, clearly used to it. "Personally I'm partial to the theory that we ev olved on ancient Notron. That would be renamed what we know as Coruscant. I mean it makes sense no? It became the capital of the greatest civilization the Galaxy has ever seen."

Strangely it was not the Gungan or Toydarian that took such issue but the human looking clone. He said nothing but his expression darkened and Senotho could feel his anger rising. Senotho waved a flat hand and nodded to his friend. Signaling to keep cool. Grid took a breath and aloud Layton his opinion.

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Jellico listened as Layton answered Lieutenant Faron's question.  This brings up even more questions, Jellico thought.  I mean, they look like humans.  And our sensors registered them as human.  But is it possible that humans evolved in two different places?  He shook his head, pushing those thoughts aside.  It wasn't important at the moment, and he has a crew to worry about.  "I wonder, Minister, if it would be possible to view a starmap of your empire?  I think it's obvious by now, that we aren't from around here.  While I thank you for your hospitality, my primary goal must be to figure out where we are and how to get back home."  His shoulders stiffened.  "Our Federation is at war, and while one ship might not make a difference...." he paused, feeling the tension from his three officers.  "I would be grateful for any assistance you can give us." 

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“At war?” Layton himself leaned in. “My good captain, as Imperial citizens, you’re entitled to Imperial military protection.”

“Entitled to. At the mercy of.” Rita whined sarcastically. Layton either ignored her or didn’t care.

“ZK please. Bring up a galactic map so we can assist our friends.” ZK nodded and communicated with an astromech droid that wheeled up and threw open a holographic display of the galactic map, with a helpful political guide showing the regions and who controlled them. No surprise the Galactic Empire dominated most of it, including the sector they were currently in. Then there was Hutt Space. Nominally under Imperial control but the Hutts managed more independence than most. Then there were the margins of the map marked “contested” which was code for, rebellion, sedition, defection and other such acts.

Obviously the Federation, and neither its enemies appeared anywhere on it. He had to admit, Senotho was curious about Captain Jellico and his crew. He knew that they were somehow “new” but he wasn’t sure how and maybe this would help.

Edited by Steel Accord

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'Imperial Military protection'?  I hope that's just an offer of assistance, Jellico thought, while studying the starmap.  But I hope he's not taking that 'Imperial Citizen' term to literally.  He and the lieutenant studied the map carefully.  "Mr Faron?" he asked.

"I have no idea, Captain," came the response.  Faron's eyes darted back and forth, quickly reading the map and trying to spot ANY familiar system.  "All of this...nothing appears familiar.  I'd have to cross-check it against the ship's database to be certain, but in my opinion," he turned, and his eyes locked with Jellico's, "Captain, this is NOT our galaxy."

The room went quiet for a moment.  "I was afraid you would say that," said Jellico, looking over to Layton.  "Minister, our original guess appears to be correct.  Nothing here," he waved at the holomap, "matches anything we know about our own galaxy."  He took a moment to compose his thoughts, then began to tell them the story.  "We were investigating a nebula cloud that was giving off strange energy readings.  Our guess was either a natural phenomenon, or a possible enemy installation.  However, something happened that we still can't fully explain.  Apparently, a quantum subspace rift formed in the nebula, and as it collapsed it pulled my ship through.....and dumped us just outside your system."  He looked to the map again, not to study it, but as if looking up into space.  "That rift must have connected our two galaxies somehow, forming a passage between us.  You mentioned a planet that might be your homeworld."  A sigh.  "Our home is called Earth, or Terra for a more formal name.  We evolved there, and now it's the capital of the United Federation of Planets.  With over 150 member worlds, the Federation is a peaceful alliance of all races."  His eyes narrowed.  "But we don't control nearly as much of our galaxy as your Empire does here.  This," he waved a hand around the Empire's territory on the map, "is something I've never dreamed of.  A true galactic government.  Truly a marvel."

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