The following is an archived record of events regarding what our operations have labeled ‘The Partisan Gambit’. These archives will detail the series of major circumstances which led up to the defection of the Mandalorian Mud Squad to the Empire of the Hand. This entry retells the first known incident, code named ‘Return to Hell’.
Commanded by the Mandalorian Captain Zim by the order of Mandalore the Infinite, eight fresh recruits began their training in the brownish gray filth hole called The Yard. The squad battled the elements for food and shelter, surviving day by day until they were deemed worthy of serving in combat alongside the other Mando Corps. These eight soldiers were molded into perfect warriors, and upon their ‘graduation’, they were assigned the title of Mud Squad.
Two among these eight were special, warriors assigned to this squad especially by Mandalore the Infinite, elite mercenaries who had recently lost their memories, and unknown to any except for Captain Zim and Mandalore the Infinite, they had been recovered from the planet Dathomir‘s Black Temple following the chaotic events of The Awakening. These two had been flagged to be indoctrinated into the Mandalorian’s ways, for special attention to be placed in the new Mandalorian Partisan program.
Weeks of training saw the crew begin to work as a unit, and the soldiers began to except their lot in the Mandalorian’s, including the two special cases. Captain Zim finally decided that they were ready to move on, and the Mud Squad was assigned a mission by Mandalore the Infinite to reexamine the ruins of Dathomir, to recover any remains or information regarding the incident from several weeks ago. Mandalore the Infinite also hoped it would help his two special projects recover memories or powers that would continue to assist in the growth of the Partisan program.
The only major complication, in the eyes of Captain Zim, was the attachment of the Mandalorian Quartermaster Dro Artos, who went by the name of Swindle. With some bad blood between the two, Captain Zim was forced to accept Swindle into the squad despite his best efforts. With that, the Captain made sure to warn his Squad to ensure they deal with Swindle at their own peril, while Swindle made it clear that he could get the group whatever they wanted, if they could get him the credits.
Departing The Yard, the squad finally went out for its first mission. Arriving at Dathomir, they were briefed and marched out into the planet’s lush fields, heading towards the tomb complex that contained the Black Temple, with the intent on recovering any unique artifacts or weapons that may be of interest. The mission details were to hike across the fields into the collapsed Temple, recon for bodies and strip them of any gear, destroying any competition, although expected resistance was minimal.
The unit marched halfway to the temple when they suddenly heard a loud crash of trees. Smashing through the treeline, the group was confronted by two Rancor’s battling for supremacy, and a third, larger Rancor, watching. As it noticed the group, it gave off a huge bellow, and charged the group. Assaulting the planet in the midst of Rancor mating season was just the first obstacle, followed by a group of mysterious stealthed assassin. These mysterious warriors battled the Mandalorians, but halted just as suddenly as they had attacked, withdrawing from combat immediately after they first encountered Swindle. Despite the mysterious circumstances surrounding these assassins, the most dangerous of all was what they discovered within the ruins of the Black Temple, a horrifying Dark Side apparition.
The Force spirit, dejected and filled with hate, was in actuality the spiritual remains of the Dark Jedi Paxis. The group was unable to fully combat this threat, and the spirit of Paxis assaulted them mentally, inhabiting their bodies in search of a new host, and in this, he was partially successful. One of the Mandalorian’s collapsed, finally overcome by the spirit’s mental attacks, as Paxis destroyed the man’s personality and mind, taking over. But in the process, Paxis destroyed his ability to tap into the Force, placing his spirit in complete control of a being with no Force sensitivity.
As several of the soldiers attended their unconscious companion, the remaining men analyzed the remains. They discovered several corpses in armor, but most interesting was the remains of a mysterious Droid, badly burnt on the outside, but with the interior more or less intact, but with no memory or data storage within the Droid. Apparently left as a trap, attempting to hack the remains resulted in the activation of holoprojector, displaying two droids, a Bulk Loader, and a strange Probe Droid. Analyzing the group, they determined that they were unauthorized and unimportant, irrelevant targets which were not to be allowed access to the Droid’s advanced technology. As such, they self-detonated the remains, forcing the Mandalorian’s to flee as the cavern collapsed.
IN debriefing, the soldier, now Paxis, at first seems belligerent and angry. But as it dawned on him that he could not use his Force abilities to escape, he began to play along with the Mandalorian’s, planning to bide his time. As the squad began its journey back to The Yard, they received the worst news of all. While they were out in the field, Mandalore the Infinite was found dead, beheaded.