Part 4: # Days 6-43: The Beginning of the War, the End of the Sanity.
DAYS 5 TO 43: Five and a Half Weeks in Hell
Bullshit. Death Sticks are bullshit. Grind up enough dried rosemary and you can make yourself some Death Sticks. I've had Virginia Slims with more kick. Conserving my last two cigars has become far more important than this war. I've heard some things about "spice", but can't find any here on this titanic city-ship of Wussdonia. No smokes, can't drink, and no war to wage. Everyone was doing their thing, there were no moves to make.
Life is meaningless. Nothing to do...nothing to do...
I should take up surfing. On the beaches of Sullust. Napalm raining from the sky, coating the land a gorgeous orange. I'd wave to all the joggers on the shore, running to the sea in a futile attempt to wash off the sticky liquid fire. They're the lucky ones.
The stormtroopers agonize as their eyeballs melt just before the convection oven roars at full blast within their wonderful shiny armor. Giant blisters form on their skin within seconds, pop just as quickly, and leave the glorious ex-human within the suit screaming for sweet release. The world burns like a wilted autumn leaf in a goddamn gorgeous dream inferno, and the wind helps me catch a most gnarly wave to glide into the sunset on. I could just let the Empire smoulder, ending as a black stain forgotten on the eternal cosmic soul of humanity.
:Master Meteor! You must put that Death Stick out! Not only is it not sanctioned for consumption in Rebel Alliance territory, but processed Tibanna gas byproducts are constantly gathering around this facility! One faulty air vent could cause a tremendous explosion!
:If I say its safe to surf this beach Threepio, then its safe to surf this beach. I mean I'm not afraid to surf this place, I'll surf this whole fucking place! I'll surf, I'll surf, and I'll smoke this death stick, and, and, I'll...
I probably should remove my hands from his neck. But I just feels like squeezing. Maybe there IS something to those death sticks.
: Oh dear! S...sir! While I do not require air to breath or speak, I would be most grateful if you would release me, Master Meteor!
: Just like I thought.
I took a final puff of the stick, before crushing it under my boot.
: Like what, sir?
Charlie don't surf.
: Nothing. What do you want?
: Admiral Neva is rather anxious. I believe her proximity to Coruscant is leaving her quite alarmed. The enemy forces gathered there are likely numerous and powerful, and she is alone with just a medium transport. She requests orders.
: ...ugh. Fine. Send Crapflaps in the transport to Coruscant.
: Sir? You must be joking!
: Nope. It's a great plan. Either I get good data on the OpFor after she runs away, or I don't have to look at her anymore. Awesome plan, in fact.
: Yes Master. The HappyParachute Fleet is on course to attack Coruscant...I do hope you know what you're doing.
: Silly droid. Put your hope in God and the stock market. Give your blind obedience to me. Is there anything else?
: No sir. We are still days from deploying our Bothan spies on Mon Calimari, weeks from being joined by Master Luke and Master Solo, and months from having a major center of production.
: Then leave me. I was having the most wonderful vision. Everyone was dead...
: Yes sir. Oh dear oh dear...
And then they were all just lying still and smoking. Just like me. Their bodies become my cigars. I cultivate their charred remains to fuel my sin. Smoking...what kind of God couldn't love me? I'm so wonderful, so pure grey. I need another Death Stick.
I was greeted upon my arrival to the war room with two new messages on R2's on-board messaging system. The first was promising.
My first Bothans. My fighting Uruk'Hai. I shall give them glory.
: Threepio, as we keep getting spies, keep sending them to the neutral systems in Sluis Van. I want to be damn sure they don't have a diplomat screwing us over in there.
: Yes Master Meteor.
The second message? It wasn't promising. It was orgasmic.
: It doesn't look promising, Master Meteor.
: I once sent my two weakest privates, armed with throwing knives, against General Noo-Sing's elite guard. And do you know what they did, faced with a seeming impossible task nobody expected them to accomplish?
: I am not sure sir, I am unfamiliar with their particular tactics.
: They ran like hell. Pull that ship out of there. Shoot some lasers at the TIEs along the way.
I sat back in my seat, and waited for the results. I wasn't going to bother interceding in this fight. I was waiting for a worthy fight, with people I cared about. I would be waiting a long time. The battle report came in from Neva on the CKitten.
: Hm. No lasting damage on either side. A few downed TIEs, and a slightly damage shield generator. Well, we know what we're dealing with now. Judicator. What a stupid name. When Crapflaps gets back to Svivren, have her stay on planet, and send the CKitten out to that left-most sector with the troops. Time to do a little colonizing.
: How remarkably sensible, Master Meteor! I will be happy to infor-
: Inform Crapflaps about the ancient samurai and fictional Shofixti traditions of suicide after defeat. Just drop it as a subtle hint.
: ...I see.
Word came back from the colonizing transport in my current sector. Turns out this sector's even more worthless than I could have imagined. I better start looking forward to swallowing a blaster bolt when this whole build up the Outer Rim strategy fails magnificently.
Everyone fails me. I can't trust anyone. I'm so alone. I want to cry. I want a hug. I need some cookies.
I was about to quit. You can't sit in a room, reading tactics and encyclopedias for weeks. Your brain starts to reject reality, whatever it may be. Depression sank in. And then I was disappointed again.
: These fucking Bothans, they're worth less than slaves! At least you can beat slaves to death when they disappoint you.
: One failed mission does not mean much in the larger picture, sir. There are more spies being trained every day, and I'm sure success will come, you'll see! When you get two together, you can send one in as a decoy! This decoy will ensure that the Imperials follow the wrong leads, and our operative can complete his mission free from impediments.
Just then a new message came in. Good news, finally. A promising world had been found near Triton.
: Outstanding! THERE, that is where we will build construction yards! I count what, 11 spots? 11 construction yards. I'm getting aroused thinking about it.
: I see, Master Meteor.
It was hard not to laugh at that one. I need to use more sexual euphemisms around him. Six hours later, another report came in, this one from Crapflaps.
The little bastard wasn't giving up, was she? I can see it in her eyes, she craves blood. Gallons of the stuff. I need to feed her, and soon. I do hope something comes along...
I used my first decoy today. I sent another mission to Bpfassh, the system named after flatulence, with one Bothan as the spy, and one as decoy. Hopefully this will provide a win/win situation, as Bothans die but missions still complete. I can always dream...
I think I finally acclimated to the hurry-up-and-wait lifestyle afforded me here. It involved sleeping pills and a laissez faire attitude. I deleted a bunch of messages R2 tried sending me, blah blah blah bothans, actually doing something right, who cares. Not I.
Only thing of interest I did saw was that we were sending a spy mission to Sullust, the only Imperial hub in the entire Sluis Van system. If I could see what was there, I'd get an idea of not only what their force was, but what I could expect their force to be for the next few weeks.
Not too often I get visits from the head of state.
: Commander Meteor? I've come to inform you that I've successfully recruited Sarin Virgilio, an accomplished captain.
: Wonderful, great, send that spawn of Alec Baldwin and Steven Segal down to Sluis Van. We'll probably be needing some muscle down there.
: Were you intending to inhabit the war room without clothing frequently?
: I ran out of clean ones after I mistook an exhaust port for a washing machine. Things here could really use some labels.
: I keep trying to tell him, Master Mothma, that it WAS clearly labelled.
: I will be sure to send tailors to you today, and if you'll acquiesce to it again, a cleaning droid to your room.
: Fine, but I maintain the right to shoot this droid too if it throws something away I wanted to keep.
: Keeping a dead mynock in your room is completely unsanitary sir, the droid was only doing it's job to keep you healthy.
: It looked cool and it was MINE. Parlez-vous MINE?
: I must return to my duties. Be sure to be...presentable tomorrow. The future of the Alliance is arriving.
: Oh my God. Tomorrow's the day the arrive, right? Luke, Leia, Han, Wedge...oh and that wookie! God, it's like fucking Christmas! We'll finally get some work done!
: Yes. Incidentally, Luke was saying something cryptic about...Crapfleet? Crapstacks? He said he heard something distressing through the force, and thought this riddling phrase might somehow be related to you.
Uh oh. He can't read minds can he?
: Whatever it is, I'm certain you two can have a lengthy discussion about it tomorrow. Good day, Commander Meteor.
: Hey, Mon Mothma...
I stood up, hands on my hips, completely naked. And winked.
: Call me Marshall.
I'm reasonably sure I saw her wink back before she double-timed it out of the war room. Upon reflection, I realized it was probably a nervous tic of unadulterated rage.
Tomorrow was shaping up to be a hell of a day. Possibly the true start of this merry little revolution. There were a lot of major questions racing through my head. Do we really stand a chance? Is going commando socially acceptable? I've decided I don't really care about the answers to either question.
: Threepio, the time of destiny is upon us. Fetch me my destiny pants.
: Your what, sir?
Time of fucking destiny...