Previous chapters can be found here:
The Enloe Trials Prologue: The Baron's Crusade
Chapter 1: Seeds of Insurrection
Since the fall of the Republic, the Enloe family has hidden safely on the obscure planet of Urelia.
With the Clone Wars behind them, they have avoided the oppression of the Galactic Empire...
...and Caldin Enloe has known a life of peace and stability.
But all of that has suddenly changed...
Young and naive, the boy was in awe at seeing Imperial Stormtroopers for the first time...
Under orders from Imperial Baron Tylin Gere, Rykrof Enloe's wife and son have been escorted from their home...
...but not all of the Stormtroopers left the homestead.
The remaining members of the family found themselves at the mercy of the invaders...
...and were executed for "Crimes against the Empire."
...however, one observer managed to survive the attack.
Having spotted an Imperial Star Destroyer in the atmosphere, Rykrof and Freelo race back to the homestead...
"Caldin!" Rykrof yells as he searches the estate for his family.
"No... it can't be..."
"I wasn't here..." Rykrof sobs as he cradles the body of his father.
"We may have been killed too..." Freelo softly replies.
"C...Caldin... Alyssa..." Rykrof stutters, as he attempts to regain his composure...
"We'll find them," Freelo offers as he helps support his friend from falling to the ground.
"Master Enloe! Thank goodness it's really you!" T-3PO shouts as he approaches Rykrof.
"Where's my son?" Rykrof demands.
"They were Imperial Stormtroopers, I believe. They took him and Alyssa with them," the droid explains.
"And look what they did to poor Palom and your father!"
"Look!" the droid then shouts.
"Someone is sending a transmission to the homestead!"
Rykrof stares impatiently as the transmission begins to patch through...
...as the image of a high ranking Imperial materializes.
"Tylin Gere!" Freelo exclaims.
"Greetings from the Empire, my old friends," the Imperial baron announces.
"You must accept my condolences for your losses," he pauses.
"There are so many unfortunate casualties of war."
"They did nothing to deserve this!" Rykrof bellows.
"Quite the contrary," the Imperial smugly replies.
"When my troops arrived, they immediately opened fire on my men."
"We both know that's not what happened here," Rykrof snarls.
"Where is my son?"
"Up here, with me... and with your wife," Tylin continues.
"I had nearly forgotten what a beautiful woman she is."
"You're going to pay for this, you son of bitch."
"You are not in a position to make threats," the Imperial Baron retorts.
"Now... if you wish to ever see your wife or son again, you will follow my orders."
"Several years ago, we were closing in on an ancient Sith artifact that was in possession of the Separatists," Tylin explains.
"The Rhen Var artifact..." Rykrof says in disbelief.
"Correct," the Imperial says.
"And finally, it's been located... on Dathomir... and currently in the hands of Badoo Corba terrorists."
"That's why you targeted Rykrof," Freelo mutters.
"Because he's been to Dathomir... and knows Badoo Corba procedures."
"You'll find their base on the island of Prootin," Tylin explains.
"There you will secure the artifact, validate the contents are intact, and report back to me."
"You have 30 standard days to complete your assignment. The holocode to reach me is within a shuttle waiting for you back at the Rithos spaceport... if I don't hear from you, I will be forced to assume you have failed."
"I'll get the relic for you," Rykrof says.
"But promise me; you won't touch my son... or Alyssa."
"They have nothing to fear," Tylin smiles.
"You will find adequate supplies aboard the shuttle... R4-22 will lead you to it."
Rykrof watches as the transmission comes to an abrupt end.
"An astro droid?" Rykrof wonders aloud.
At that moment, an Imperial R4 unit turns the corner.
"I have a bad feeling about this," Rykrof growls.
Coming to a halt, R4-22 beeps an obscenity at Rykrof in response.
"I'm not sure we should take that shuttle," Freelo says.
"This could be a trap."
"It may be, but for now I need to do things Tylin's way," Rykrof explains.
"You really don't have to get involved with this, Freelo. This is my problem; not yours."
"Caldin and Alyssa are my family too," Freelo snorts.
"Alright then," Rykrof says softly.
"We'll get moving after we bury Palom and Dad."
Meanwhile, the Dantallion prepares to leave the Urelia System.
"This is almost too easy," Tylin smirks to himself as he exits the transmission room.
"Sir," an officer says as he approaches Tylin.
"We have secured Enloe's wife and child in a holding block on level two."
"Well done," Tylin smiles.
"How much do they know?"
"They are completely unaware of what has transpired," the officer grins.
"Both are under the assumption that the Stormtroopers deployed to the homestead were sent to rescue them from an impending Badoo Corba strike."
"However, the wife does appear to be suspicious."
"We must see to it that Alyssa Enloe gains our trust," the Baron replies.
"Now, see to it that both are treated well."
"These people are our guests, after all."
Back on Urelia, the streets of Rithos Spaceport carry on as usual with dangerous thugs at every corner...
...and in Docking Bay 19A, Rykrof and his companions arrive at their destination.
"We've been expectin' you," a gruff Advozse security guard announces.
"We can... take it from here," Rykrof carefully replies.
"Guuda," the leader of the group says.
"Now get this Imperial scrap outta here."
Rykrof then cautiously watches as the group exits the docking bay.
"The Advozse are a most peculiar species," T-3PO announces as he and R4-22 approach the ship.
"They are!" Freelo agrees.
"Maybe we should be on our way soon... we wouldn't want to upset them."
"Sir, if you'll not be needing me, I think I'll board the shuttle with R4," T-3PO then says.
"Freelo, we're going to need to..." Rykrof pauses.
"Stay back, I'll handle this," he growls while approaching a group who has quietly entered the docking bay.
"Remain calm," former Jedi Master Kala Mly Shundi insists, sensing Rykrof's anger.
"We're here to help."
"Kala?" he asks.
"What's going on? Why are you here?"
"He sensed you were in danger," Traedon Cusiro explains.
"You! You son of a bitch!" Rykrof shouts as he aims his blaster at Traedon.
"Echuta!" Traedon's droid warns.
"Rykrof, NO!" Kala pleads.
"He's clean. Traedon has been working with me since the war. He has no allegiance to the Badoo Corba."
"I locked you up myself," Rykrof snarls.
"How did you get out of prison?"
"When the Separatists attacked Coruscant, I was able to escape in all the confusion," Traedon shrugs.
"The complex was destroyed... you should be glad to know I'm okay."
"I felt the deaths at your home," Kala then frowns.
"Tell me... where are Caldin and Alyssa?"
"Tylin abducted them," Rykrof frowns.
"He sent us here to the shuttle to recover an artifact for him on Dathomir."
"We were about to depart before you arrived."
"Everything checks out with the ship," Freelo offers.
"I can't even find evidence of a tracking device."
"Hey!" Tradeon hollers upon noticing an Advozse lurking behind a power generator.
"Dunka no spola!"
"Get out of here before I break that horn off in your ass!" Traedon threatens.
"Go on! I said GET!"
"Moorgh oat maak'say!" the Advozse curses back at Traedon as he exits the docking bay.
"Humph! Never can be too careful," Traedon grins.
"I am offering our services to you to recover the artifact and help save your family," Kala then says to Rykrof.
"If you refuse, I will be forced to return back to my team on Alderaan."
"I'm not sure I like this, but I'll take whatever help we can get," Rykrof concedes.
"Good," Kala smiles. "You can explain everything you know about this artifact en route to Dathomir."
"Here we go again," Freelo sighs.
Thank you for the support guys - I appreciate any comments/feedback. And hopefully I will be able to get the next installment up sooner rather than later.