Star Wars: Dawn of Darkness
Aiden's War Journal 1
From the War Journal of Aidan Dyre
Vashara Moon, Outer Rim, Night, Year 3 of the Clone Wars
he rain beat down through the forest trees. Mud coated the ground and my boots as we raced deeper and deeper into the forest. Behind us the searchlights shone, burrowing holes through the darkness in which we sought refuge. Vines and branches whipped past us as we splashed our way through the dense foliage. We changed direction every two hundred meters, creating a dizzying trail, which was all too soon washed away by the downpour.
Finally we stopped to catch our breath. I stood under a slight outcropping. Rain drops dripping down my helmet. My legs sore from running over the uneven ground. My armour coated in mud and blood. My breath can in quick pants as I willed my heart to return to normal. Failing that I gazed around at my companions. Of the twenty-five men who came to this wretched moon with General Bren, only three remained.
The betrayal had happened suddenly. One minute I was surveying the repairs made to the lander, talking with the clone technician about the vertical fracture he had just finished wielding shut and the next he received a message on his comlink. After that everything went crazy. The technician quietly put the comlink away and as if nothing happened drew his blaster and fired it at me.
Perhaps it was the calm. Yes, that’s what it was. Silent, cold, efficient, the kind of behaviour one expects of a professional soldier on the battlefield. Just not in a hanger bay of a supply depot with the enemy nowhere to be seen. Now it seemed there was a new enemy.
Only years of training and observation enabled me to dodge aside in time. My hand struck out and sent the blaster reeling from the technician’s hand. It took a matter of seconds to grab hold of him, but the tech had similar combat training and the two of us became locked in our fight to the death. I wish I could say that I granted him an honourable death, that I had bested him with skill. I didn’t! My hand found a hydrospanner in the scattering of tools and I hit him with it, hard, sickeningly hard. His head fell back and he didn’t raise it again.
The rain is coming down faster now and there is nowhere to go for the time being. What we need is rest. Only three! We were better, one of us was worth five of the clones and still only we three survive. Standing next to me breathing hard is Darr Lannik. His blue and green helmet covering his face. He gives me a look and a thumbs up. But I know that under his helmet is a look of bloody revenge. At the edge of the outcropping stands Shad Raal, his breathing equally hard, but unlike us he is keeping watch with the scope from his sniper rifle. His green and black helmet nods once and we knew that for the moment we were safe. Safe but trapped.