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DARK ILLUSIONSChapter 22



Following an emergency session of the Galactic Senate, Senator Bail Organa waits for Padme Amidala outside the Chancellor’s office.


    



Captain Antilles: Is it true the Security measured passed, your Majesty?

Bail Organa: Yes, that’s true, and without much resistance. The Chancellor was very successful in gathering support for the measure.



    



Bail Organa: Once the news spread about two Royal Guards being murdered and dumped at an abandoned warehouse, Senators quickly changed their minds about the need for a Clone Security force. He certainly didn’t need our support, so I’m confused why he wants to meet with Senator Amidala and me so quickly.

Captain Antilles: Perhaps he just wants to thank you for your support.






Bail Organa: Let’s hope so. I am in no mood to discuss another amendment, which will only result in the Chancellor gaining more power. Prepare the Tantive IV for our trip home. We’ll leave as soon as this meeting concludes.

Captain Antilles: Yes, your Highness.






Bail Organa: Pleasure to see you again, Senator Amidala.

Padme Amidala: And you as well, Bail. I bumped into Senator Tills on my way here. When I mentioned that we were meeting with the Chancellor, he insisted on joining us.






Padme Amidala: He is convinced we will try to persuade the Chancellor to rescind the Security measure, aren’t you, Meena?





Meena Tills: Please don’t misunderstand me. I am just as concerned as you are about the power the Chancellor is gathering. However, this new Security Act will ensure the safety of Coruscant and the Senate.





Meena Tills: I personally have witnessed the consequences of this war. Mon Calamari is still in ruin following the attack by the Separatists. We must protect the Capital at all costs.

Bail Organa: I agree, Senator, but Palpatine has been given the final word on how this new Clone division is used. In short, he controls the only garrison on Coruscant. We must be certain that he does not abuse that power.






Bail Organa: Hopefully, he will give us some insight to his plans during this meeting. My only hope is that he involves the Jedi in some way with this new Clone army.





Meena Tills: That’s a good idea. Perhaps he will. However, this Security Force should only be seen as a positive thing for the Republic.

Bail Organa: Possibly, but what Jedi would sacrifice fighting in the War to remain here on Coruscant fulltime?

Padme Amidala: (whispering) I know of one……






Scarlet: Halt! Show your identification.





Bail Organa: Is that really necessary? We’ve never been asked to show identification before. I am Senator Bail Organa of Alderaan, and this is Senators Amidala and Tills.





Scarlet: Your names appear on the list of guests. You may proceed.

Bail Organa: Thank you. I can understand your concern.






Mas Amedda: Welcome Senators. We’ve been expecting you.

Bail Organa: Senators Amidala and Tills have accompanied me today, Mas.






Mas Amedda: Yes, of course. The Chancellor welcomes any opportunity to speak with a Senator on a one-to-one basis.





Padme Amidala: Where is the Chancellor now?





Mas Amedda: He is speaking to Governor Tarkin.





Mas Amedda: But he wanted to begin the meeting as soon as you arrived, Senators. Here he comes now.





Chancellor Palpatine: Please excuse my rudeness for not greeting you myself. It seems everyone is excited about the new Galactic Security. Welcome, Senators Organa and Amidala.





Bail Organa: Please allow me introduce Senator Meena Tills of Mon Calamari.

Chancellor Palpatine: Yes, of course. I was saddened to hear about the devastation on to your home world, Senator.

Meena Tills: Thank you, Chancellor. We are on our way to a full recovery, thanks to the Republic and Jedi Master Fisto.






Chancellor Palpatine: Well then, let us begin. Thank you for joining me today, to celebrate the passing of the Galactic Security measure. Coruscant will be forever thankful for our work today, Senators.





Chancellor Palpatine: Due to our hard work and dedication, Coruscant will soon be protected by specially trained Clones. These two new divisions will be the best troops we’ve ever had.





Chancellor Palpatine: However, we must not forget the terrible murders of the two Royal Guards. Let us now look upon their tragic loss as the beginning of a more safe and secure Republic.





Padme Amidala: Does that include a Peace Summit with the leaders of the Confederacy, Chancellor?





Chancellor Palpatine: I hope so, Senator. You must know that I personally want nothing more than a peaceful end to this War.





Chancellor Palpatine: But it may prove difficult to convince the Separatist leaders to come to Coruscant……Security Force or not.

Governor Tarkin: I volunteer my home world of Eriadu to hold the Peace Summit. We have learned from our previous mistakes during the Valorum administration, I assure you.






Meena Tills: We must hold the Summit here on Coruscant, for that is the reason many Senators voted for the Security measure. Eriadu is in the Outer Rim, Governor, and not a part of the Republic.





Chancellor Palpatine: Senator Tills is right. The Summit, if one were to be held, must be on Coruscant. That is one point that I will not concede. But first, we must have the Security force in place before any Summit can be organized.





Bail Organa: How long will that take? Clones require ten years to mature.





Chancellor Palpatine: I have good news, Senators! I have just received confirmation from Kamino about a new batch of Clones that were trained for this exact purpose. They were originally created to protect Kamino from any invasion. However, they have agreed to donate these troops to the Republic. They should arrive in a few days.

Bail Organa: And what about the Jedi? Will they be involved with this new Clone battalion?






Chancellor Palpatine: It did occur to me during the debates that one Jedi should work closely with the new troops. Perhaps the Council can recommend someone.





Chancellor Palpatine: As soon as the troops arrive, I will speak with the Jedi Order regarding this matter. Now, if you’ll excuse me, I must begin preparing for my public announcement.





Chancellor Palpatine: I greatly appreciate your time and your support, Senators. Only together can we restore peace to the Republic.





Governor Tarkin: I have urgent matters I must attend to on Eriadu. If you’ll excuse me, gentlemen…M’Lady.





Bail Organa: Can you believe the coincidence that Kamino just happen to have these Clones so readily available?

Padme Amidala: No. Why would Kamino need their own security force if the Republic is already protecting Kamino?

Meena Tills: I agree. There is something not right about this.






Meena Tills: Nevertheless, we have Palpatine’s assurances that he will pursue a diplomatic solution. And that he will consult with the Jedi Order.





Bail Organa: We have at least that much. His motives seem well-intended, but everything is happening so quickly. I look forward to his speech and the reaction from the Republic.





Padme Amidala: The reaction will be nothing but positive. He is even more popular with the people than he is in the Senate. But we should discuss these matters elsewhere.





Padme Amidala: We never know who could be listening……



DARK ILLUSIONS
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