Jinli Coedi - The Clone Wars Era

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Jinli Coedi - The Clone Wars Era

Post  Jinli Coedi on Fri Oct 17, 2008 3:29 am

As the Republic Attack Gunship descended from the atmosphere, Jinli closed his eyes and tired reached out to the force. Searching for anything that would give him reassurances about the mission he was about to undertake, he muddled his way through the endless ripples and clouds in his mind but failed to find an answer. This concerned him somewhat as he’d always been closely attuned to the force but lately his connection had been cloudy.

It was a perilous time for the Republic and particularly the Jedi Order with many Jedi being killed in the countless battles that raged across the Galaxy on so many fronts. ‘Perhaps that was the reason for the clouds’, Jinli thought to himself. ‘Such an unprecedented disturbance in the force’.

He looked over towards the port side entrance hatch to see his Padawan, a headstrong but inexperienced young Zabrak female named Eethi, peering out tying to get a better view of the action taking place below.

“We'll be down soon enough young one.” He yelled, trying to be heard over the gunship’s noisy engines. “You should take this time to balance your thoughts, get your head together instead of trying to get it blown off!

Eethi pulled her head back into the ship. “Yes Master.” She replied with tremble in her voice. “It’s just I wanted to see what we’re about to get ourselves into.”

Jinli could sense her anxiety. ‘Who could blame her?’ he thought to himself. It was their second mission together and the first hadn’t exactly gone to plan. It wasn’t easy for either of them to witness the death of a fellow Jedi, but to a Padawan, suddenly realising that Jedi, even Masters were vulnerable, must have been a rather cruel but probably necessary wake up call. In fact, the war itself had been a wake up call to the entire order, but one Jinli feared was too late.

As Eethi sat down on the bench beside him, he placed his hand on her shoulder attempting to comfort her.

“We have nothing to fear young one.” He said in a soft, calming voice. “The force is with us. I can feel it and we’re on the right path.”

Eethi smiled and sat back.

Jinli had mastered the ability to disguise or hide his feelings, so his Padawan had no idea that he was being less than truthful on this occasion. She had no idea that Jinli’s connection to the force had become clouded, or that he did not know what to expect once the ship touched down. It was a white lie designed to boost the confidence of his young learner and it seemed to work.

“Two Minutes till we touch down General”. Announced the Clone Trooper Commander.

Jinli nodded in acknowledgment as the Commander turned to his troops and gave the order for them to make their final checks.

The cabin suddenly filled with the sound of clunks and clicks as the troopers began checking their equipment and running through the drills they’d done many times before. Jinli always found it reassuring to see them look so relaxed, and even though their faces were hidden by their T-Visor helmets, he could tell they were confident and eager to get in amongst the action.

Coming to his feet, Jinli moved over to the hatch and cautiously peered out. There was no sign of any AA fire so he knew the ARC Troopers had successfully completed their mission. Looking down, he could see the smouldering and flaming hulls of at least two downed Gunships, ones that had been sent in before the AA canons had been taken out. At the beginning of the war, such a sight would have triggered some kind of emotional response in Jinli, but he’d seen so much carnage, so many clone troopers die that he’d almost become immune to it. It wasn’t that he didn’t care; he just had more pressing things on his mind.

Through the canopy of the forest below, he could see the familiar sight of red and green laser bolts dancing through the trees, a stark reminder that they were landing in a hot zone. Though the canopy was too thick to see any personnel on the ground, the laser fire and explosions indicated that the advanced party of Republic troops were now engaging the Separatists.

Over his shoulder he was aware that Commander Fed had joined him at the hatch.

“Looks like we’re going to have some fun General.” Fed said through his helmet com as he gazed down.

Jinli’s hand reassuringly caressed the hilt of his lightsaber. “Yes, looks like it Commander”. He replied with a grin. “But don’t we always have fun when I’m around?”

Commander Fed laughed out loud knowing that Jinli was referring to the many scrapes they’d been in together during the past few missions.

“Are the men ready?” Jinli asked as the ship descended closer to the surface.

“They were born ready General!” Commander Fed replied.

“Well then.” Jinli replied with a grin, “Best get a move on then. We can’t let these Separatists have all the fun now can we?”

Commander Fed acknowledged the joke by slapping Jinli on the back before he turned towards his men who by now had completed their checks and were attaching themselves to the zip lines within the cabin. Jinli stepped back to avoid getting in their way. He and his Padawan would need no such equipment.

“30 Seconds!” Commander Fed shouted in response to a helmcom from the co-pilot.

Though the ARC Troopers had done a great job of taking out the AA cannons, they did not have time to create a makeshift drop zone before the Separatist droids attacked. The closest the Gunship could get was just above the canopy itself.

No sooner had it gone into a hover than the first of the troopers were out and abseiling down the line.

Jinli waited for the first wave to exit before hurling himself out the hatch. Eethi followed his lead and soon enough they’d both crashed through the dense forest ceiling before leaping from branch to branch using the force to control their descent.

The first wave of troopers had reached the ground only a few seconds after the Jedi but already, Jinli and Eethi had ignited their blades and were furiously but skilfully deflecting vollies of blaster fire that had been directed towards them. On the ground, they could now see the enemy and with the first wave of troopers providing covering fire, Jinli and Eethi closed the distance on the battle droids using the force to enhance their speed. Without hesitation they got in amongst the droids quickly and began slicing them to pieces. From a distance it looked like mindless carnage, but each slash, each strike, and each blow had been carefully placed to ensure maximum impact. Sparks flew as droid heads and limbs were severed from their mechanical bodies. The smell of burning metal filled the air and when the last droid fell, Jinli and Eethi stood back to back, lightsabres glowing and quickly assessing their surroundings to determine the threat level. Blaster bolts flew in all directions, but way off in the distance. The immediate danger had been dealt with.

By now, the entire Clone Trooper Squad was on the ground and the Gunship could no longer be seen. They formed up on the Jedi, blaster’s still smoking but luckily they’d taken no casualties during the fire fight. Commander Fed held up a hand held holo generator and examined it carefully.

“Enemy droids to East, West and South General!” He announced with intent. “Path ahead to the North seems clear Sir.”

Jinli deactivated the blue blade of his Lightsaber and nodded at Commander Fed. By reaching out with the force, he had already obtained the information Fed had just given, but in an effort not to seem smug, and to give the Commander his place, he didn’t mention it.

“Excellent Commander.” He replied quietly. “It’s just a damn shame we have to go west.”

“Shame Sir?” The Commander replied in a teasing manner. “You mean you don’t WANT to kill more Separatists?”

“Our mission is to rescue our comrade Commander.” Jinli retorted “The less droids we encounter along the way, the faster we’ll achieve our objective.”

“Very true Sir.” Fed replied, realising that the time for joking was over. “I suggest we get moving then General. It’s very possible our little encounter here has attracted some attention.”

“Agreed Commander”. Jinli replied with a smile, placing his hand on Fed’s shoulder to reassure him that his firm words were nothing personal. “I’ll let you and your men take point so you can get on with your killing.”

“Affirmative Sir!” The commander replied before giving a hand gesture that rallied his squad and had them heading west.

To be continued........

Jinli Coedi
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