Part 1 [1/11/12]
In the apartment given to him when he first arrived, Darjate Veerl sat thinking about the training of the Commandos. One group in particular was gearing up to be a true Mando squad. And it was this group he had, as well as thirty or so others, which he had the responsibilty of training.
And he would do all he could to train them. He wanted them to be the very best. They would be his.
Getting up from his seat, he walks out of the room and into the whiteness that is Kaminoan hallways. At the parade walk of the training ground, the commandos are already lined up.
"Good," Veerl says. The clones straighten up a bit more at the sound of his voice. "You're here. You are about to undergo training via the Mandalorian way. Any who fail in training won't survive when it comes to real battle. You will be trained with a multitude of evasive and attack maneuvers by me and other training seargeants."
"Sir!" It is one voice, spread across thirty six men.
Veerl then leads them down to the training ground where the group splits into their squads. He then runs basic tests with them and is impressed at the speed with which they grasp each attacking stance.
All of the clones are kitted out in grey armour so like the Mandalorian armour it was as though they were all long lost brothers. Mandalorian armour was much better, however. The beskar iron made them resistant to most blaster bolts as well as lightsabers. His own was dark green, which in spirtual terms was related to duty.
And Darjate Veerl never shirked from his duty. He wasn't wearing his armour at the minute though. When it came to the tougher tests, then he would.
He also had a number of specialist weapons that had cost him. Money was no object here though, as the contract was a hefty one, and came with a lot of credits. He would be able to quit the bounty hunter work once this contract was over, and it was a simple contract, to be training troops for battle.
There was just one thing to hate about this assignment. He'd checked with Jango about who the army was for, and he wasn't too keen to be working for the Republic, as that meant working with Jedi.
He just hoped he didn't run into one here, as it would mean the end of his contract.
Part 2 [6/11/12]
"Good," Veerl says. "Very good."
The clones stand to attention again. Each one now out of armour he could see them properly. They were indeed clones of Jango.
"Now then. Warfare is more than just fighting. It's about tactics. It's about stealth. And more importantly of all, it's about the bond between you and your comrades. Now while you are under my care, your squads will be bonded together, and you will all mix as one. You will have time with your individual sqauds, but if you get deployed together, you lot will already know each other and will have bonded. Once you get that down, then the serious stuff comes in. You must hunt your enemy. You must fire at him, defend yourself if you fail to kill. But you will not fail to kill, as you will have lightning fast reflexes. You will fight hard because you must be the best."
"Sir?" one of the clones ask. "Were you ever a bounty hunter? That sounds like one of their advertisements."
The others laugh, and even Veerl smiles. "Yes, I was, until I took this job to train you. Once this finishes, I might even go back to it."
"You won't be staying?"
"The contract is for six years. And besides which, I'd rather avoid Jedi entanglements. Let's just say relations between us Mandalorians and the Jedi isn't a good one."
"Why? What happened?" another clone asks.
"Another time. But when I do tell you, you are still to obey them. They are still your masters, even if you are riding the road to become Mandalorian."
"But what if we don't want to become Mandalorian?"
"Then you will be someone we call Dar'manda. It menas you have no identity. No soul. How would you like it if I called you that from now on? Eh, Darman?"
"So you've just given him an identity?" a third clone asks.
"No. To have the identity, you need to know all about the Mandalorian culture. Now then, what are your names?"
"Er. We don't have any. The Kaminoans just gave us numbers."
"Really. Well, we need to sort that out."
And so he starting thinking up names for the soldiers to be, most of which with Mandalorian meaning.
Part 3 [11/11/12]
The training of the commandos was coming on great, as the weeks became months, and the troopers were used to their new designations. Veerl was looking for expert squads to take up a special posting with him.
The only problem was that all the squads were performing expertly. These clones were quick to adapt to anything, and worked as hard as possible to overcome any challenge. To choose any qualifying team for the speical honour would be hard.
"Right!" Veerl calls, a year into the six year training. He was now in full Mandalorian armour, complete with the lightsaber of his last kill. When he had entered in armour, the clones had been impressed with the design. When he had pulled the ligtsaber from the side pocket of the forward slung pack, they had started asking questions. He had quelled those questions instantly. He didn't want to remember the ordeal that had led him to own the lightsaber.
"Now, as gunners, you must be able to shoot even the quickest of targets, with any weapons that come to hand. And if that target fights back? Get down fast. So, while you try to shoot at me, I'll be fighting with this." He activates the lightsaber blade. "Now I won't be aiming to kill, I'll only be aiming to disarm and block the lasers sent my way. Let's see how long you can last, or hit me as fast as you can."
The first two squads were quite good, but felled easily. The next two up had only one member fall within the first minute, then after another two managed to get a shot through his armour. The other groups that followed weren't as good, and Veerl managed to disarm all of them within two minutes each. The last two groups were next.
The first group split and ran firing towards him from different angles, firing at different times. This was a mistake however, as Veerl implemented the lightsaber in a complicated weave and reflected the bolts back at the owner. Three of the troopers were struck down. The armour of the troopers blocked the laser from penetrating to the skin. However, once struck, they knew to stand down. The last of the squad was dispatched easily.
The last group ran at him, all firing at the same time. One then stopped firing and ran around him, dodging all the lasers Veerl managed to send his way. Then he started firing again, as another trooper stopped and ran to the other side as well. All four then stopped firing and charged inwards, then as one fired one laser each. Getting out of the way, he then feels a pang on his armour.
Looking down at the timer on his forearm plate, he sees only a minute had passed. The other squads start cheering, and even Veerl smiled from inside his helmet. He'd continue watching this group until he made his final decision.
"You could be a Jedi with those moves, sir," a clone says.
The smile Veerl wears turns to a scowl, and he was very glad the troopers couldn't see it. Be a Jedi he could.
Part 4 [18/11/12]
Twelve more months had past and the clone commandos had undergone training from the numerous instructors within the complex, most of which were Mandalorian.
Veerl had also seen his share of commando squads from other instructors, including numerous other Mandalorian named troopers like Darman and Atin. On one memorable occasion, he came into contact with Dred Priest, a former member of the Death Watch, or so he said. The conversation had erupted into a fight, and some of the clones had stopped to watch. It was only when Jango himself had arrived that the fight was cut to an abrupt end.
At least the clones had learnt something, Veerl commented to Jango after Priest had stormed off and the clones had wandered off. All Jango had said was save it for the proper training sessions.
The drastic weather conditions of stormswept Kamino was starting to get to him. And so were the Kaminoans. He had heard some of the instructors call them aiwha-bait, or gi-haal, but the most he'd ever call them was a hut'uune. Not a hero. No-one who cloned like the Kaminoans did would be a hero in his eyes.
It was also getting to him that he couldn't leave whenever he wanted, and had no contact with anyone outside the planet. He was starting to wish he could escape, or even contact someone, but he knew the contract made meant he couldn't. The only thing he could do was think about the big sum of money for training the troopers, and his own wish for the troopers.
The next training session with his own batch went smoothly. From the first session where only two groups had managed to hit him, with one under a minute, all of them could do it in under thirty seconds.
He had now started teaching them to use specialist weapons, and categorising them into who was best at a particular skill. And also it gave the other instructors something to think about when they next taught them.
All in all, Veerl thought, he may as well desert if it wasn't for the fun of these training sessions. But he had more than one contract resting on this assignment.
He would not fail his duty.
Part 5 [22/11/12]
The squads under his command were to be put through what the Kaminoans called the Killing House. Training for house clearances was essential for any soldier, and the Kaminoans had a crude way training the clones for this.
The bullets were real, and the clones had to carry on if one of their squad was killed. Otherwise you were all killed. The staff inside were always aiming to kill. While Veerl watched, one clone was struck in the left arm. In fact, the whole thing looked like so much fun that Veerl had considered going in as well. And the only weapon he would take would be his lightsaber.
Turning away from the viewing monitor, Veerl walks out to where his own squads are waiting.
"Right. Killing House time," Veerl booms. "I want each and every one of you to survive. I'll be entering with you, but under no circumstances will I help you out. I am just part of the team, but we have all got to look out for each other, but we also have to look for ourselves.
"We will be called when the last group to enter has finished, and the place has been cleaned up."
"Cleaned up?" one of the clones asks.
Veerl choses not to comment. After about half an hour, the Kaminoan in charge calls them forward.
"This house clearance is to test you in accuracy and stealth," the soft spoken Kaminoan says. "You will working as a team to complete the test. You will be timed.
"You may begin."
Instantly splitting up into their respective squads, the clones walked in slowly, weapons at the ready. Turning a corner, a bolt flies from the far end. The clone in the opening dodges quickly and fires in the direction it came from.
Veerl charges forward and employs a wild move to spread those bolts fired by the clone even further apart. He then moves forward and attacks.
The clones also move in, splitting into the different rooms and calling clear. Once the whole of the lower floor had been checked, they all then proceed upstairs. However, four clones are missing from the group.
Part 6 [24/11/12]
Up the stairs and to the next floor, those four clones are surrounded. Firing upon all the terrorists, only one is left, and Veerl sees a flash of a shining hilt.
"Down!" he shouts.
"No," one of the clones say. "Leave it to us."
Just as expected, a vzzuuummm sounds as the lightsaber is activated, and instantly raises to block the bolts. Then the terrorist charges down one of the clones, who rolls out of the way as the other three fire.
The terrorist dodges all the bolts, either getting out of their way or deflecting them with the lightsaber. The fourth clone then starts firing as well, and the four directions of fire get too much for the terrorist, who then ducks out of the way. The terrorist then picks up a grenade on the floor, and the clones, seemingly defeated, run. Two seconds later, the grenade then blows up.
"Heh," Veerl laughs. "Right then, you lot. Follow me!"
Following Veerl, the other clones then reach the four heroes, where they cheer.
"You lot will get your darasuum kote for sure," Veerl says to the four clones.
"Eternal Glory. Right, sarge?"
"Exactly. Now let's get this exercise finished."
The rest of the house clearance goes quickly, and soon they are back outside.
"That was a good time for the house clearance," the Kaminoan says. "And I have to say, I think it was the best."
None other than Lama Su, Prime Minister of Kamino, then walks in. He heads directly to Veerl and looks around at the clones.
"I must say, this clone squad I just saw has most impressed me. Therefore, I have decided to renege on my previous statement, and I will allow the conversion of that group to a new and special status."
"They have more than exceeded expectations," Veerl says. "That would be more than fitting."
"What is this, though, sarge?" one of the clones asks.
"Uni-" Lamu Su begins.
Veerl coughs. "Perhaps I'd better make the announcement, since I'm the instructor."
"I would be more than willing to let you, since you have trained these superb units."
"Okay. You four, this means that your new squad name becomes Akaan squad, you will get access to all of my power and wealth, and have the opportunity of coming with me if you so choose, when I leave here."
"Hunter. Tracyn. Aranar. Lightning. Welcome to a new league of the group."