Location || Ziugen - Cattle Processing Center
The damp, dim rooms were filled with suffering, sentient and otherwise. Groups of people huddled together for warmth, their bodies, a mix of plush and malnourished, huddled together for warmth and protection as they resorted to their most basic of animal instincts. The stone floors were covered in filth and none of the occupants wanted to think of where, exactly it consisted of, but the smell of the room, the smell of sweat, fear and filth told them all they needed to know. Strong bars lined the ends of the room, a blue shield buzzing faintly in front of each 'room' filled with its sentient cattle, its soft hum only occasionally interrupted by a faint whimper before something, or someone, shushed them. None of the huddled cattle wanted to make noise, for just beyond the bars the predators lurked, the cruel masters who watched them with hawk eyes waiting for the slightest excuse to indulge themselves in their flesh, to bring lash, shock and fire to draw out the squeels and shrieks of pain that told them the tale of a job well done.
At the center of one of these filth encrusted rooms stood a woman, who almost looked at home in the tattered clothes that barely clung to her body, her right hand a mass of onyx shaded metal, a cybernetic arm that ran all the way up past her shoulder and to her spine. Her fiery red hair ran wild around her head as if unused to such freedom, a precious commodity in this place, and was determined to make the most of it, her pale skin sprinkled with numerous freckles a stark contrast to the crimson locks and startling azure eyes that glared at the guards with a mixture of contempt and anger, the mechanical hand clenched and relaxed, the servos in the arm giving off a soft whine, a voice to the impatience swirling in the young woman. The only thing that was similar between the woman and the huddled figures around her was the bulky, grey collar around her neck, the symbol of their enslavement, greater then the bars or the guards, intimate and potent symbolizism designed to keep the cattle demure.
But it would not last. It never did. All that live, all that think, all that feel, long for freedom. Long for safety. Long for love. Long for acceptance. Anything that attempted to crush those feelings were destined for failure for no matter how great the despair, hope never dies.
Iona glared at the overweight guard who had taken great pleasure in locking a woman in a separate cage from her daughter who, even now, was trying to reach through the bars to embrace her terrified child. Iona knew why they did it. It went beyond mere cruelty. They seperated all who were family or friends, it helped reduce the desire to escape as most did not want to leave their loved ones behind and so would risk staying behind or making more elaborate plans, plans more likely to fail, some, the fear of the unknown fate of what may befall their loved ones was enough to press them down into subservience.
As she glared, her mind went over the plan, rolled it over in her mind... after she had been told it again since she hadn't bothered to read the full briefing. The task force had been split, a small group was sent in to be captured and sold as slaves, they would inspire the other slaves, guide them when the time came and prepare them for battle. The larger team, the liberators, would come in hot with supplies to arm the freed slaves and overwhelm the slavers who had long cast them down. Why she had been chosen as one of the infiltrators was beyond her as she was not suited for this kind of thing, but they said they needed a 'luxury product' as an infiltrator and she had no idea why that would mean her. They didn't know she was a Jedi, so Iona had assumed she had been chosen because her cybernetics made her a bit different from most. The infiltration team would have to endure, ignore the suffering, bear the pain for that moment, when, and if, it ever came, to rise up and patience had never been a virtue.
Her blue eyes jumped to the ohers in her room, a mixture of races, ages and sexes. They had not been separated yet. But they would soon. Broken up into 'categories' determined by their appearance, age, race and physical fitness which would help them gauge the price. The ones the slavers believed could be sold for more profit would be 'cleaned' and 'dolled' up and sent to a VIP auction, the mid-tier, usually decently attractive cattle and those suited for manual labor would be sent to a general auction and sold off across the galaxy, and, finally, the final, and lowest, tier would sold in bulk as menial slaves. She fully expected to end up as a laborer somewhere which suited her fine.
She winced as she turned too fast, the dirt starting to work its way into her cybernetics which, even on the best of days, caused her pain and discomfort as they had never, and would never, properly integrate with her nervous system, but as she hadn't been able to maintain it, it had gotten worse then normal. constant pinpricks of pain stabbed at her mind and down her spine becoming a wave of hot, searing pain when she moved too fast, but she endured for there were others here... Others that were far worse off then she. Some that hadn't eaten in days, perhaps longer.
The sharp crack of a whip echoed through the cells as a new guard entered, a thin man. a Zabark, walked in his shadow, from his clothes, Iona knew he was one of the 'higher' ranked slavers on the planet, probably the one who would overseer the separation and distribution of the newest shipment of 'cattle'. They stopped to peer into the other cell, a man was holding his wife's hand through the bars as the overweight guard from before tapped on the bars with his shock baton, "Don't worry, meat, I'll take care of her for you."
Iona wasn't able to stop herself as she gripped the bars of her cell, "Get away from them you kraking hutt-spawned sleemo!"
The guard turned to look at her and smiled, or, well, it might have been a smile, it had more holes then a Hutt's ethics policy. "Got a bit of fire in you don't you," he said, sauntering over, making sure to adjust the front of his pants as he said so, "I like the red heads, I think you just need some breaking in..."
"I really don't have all day, I got places to be," Iona said and gave the man an exaggerated roll of her eyes to undermine his authority, the button she knew would drive him over the edge, "If you're going to do it, do it. Don't talk about it unless you need some," she paused to make a crude gesture, "Magic pills to get it up?"
The guard flushed, his hands trembling, but it was his fault. If he wanted to throw barbed words, he shouldn't do it to a street rat. Whatever thought process he had were overwhelmed by his anger as he leapt at the bars, before he could act, Iona's right hand shot out, gripped the man by the back of his head. The guard's eyes widened in surprise as he tried to push away, but the cybernetic arm was far stonger and with far more pleasure then she would ever admit, she pulled his head into the metal bar, a satisfying dull, metallic clang echoing through the room.. and then she did it again. And again.
From the corner of her eye, she could see the other slaves staring in befuddled wonderment at the sight, but more then that, she could see the thin zabrak man reach into his robes and pull out a small device, he turned a dial and with a press of a button, her world exploded in white. An electric surge erupted from the collar, traveling down her mechanical spine and through her body, but the cybernetics, which were already faulty to begin with now erupted, tearing apart her nervous system. She hit the ground, her body thrashing and contorting in ways the human body was never meant to as it tried to tear itself apart. She heard a loud, ear piercing scream and Iona realized it was her. Before her world, mercifully, went black, she heard a nasally voice say something about, 'Not damaging it. It had value,' as her mind drifted into the darkness and away from the pain.
Edited by Iona Immarya, 11 February 2018 - 05:09 AM.