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[SoNE Ep. VII] What you can't do

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I can hear them. In the distance, the group of Rebels that shot us out of the sky and forced us into this gorge. It’s quite beautiful here, but something gruesome is about to happen. We don’t have a lot of time.

“They have a laser cannon with them. I bet that was what shot us out of the sky. It slows them down though. They won’t attack until they have its support here.”


[soNE Ep. VII] What you can't do by Bert.VR, on Flickr

“I can take out those troops, but I won’t stand a chance with that cannon here. They will just shoot and make us an icy grave. Someone needs to take it out. Someone needs to find a way around that armour.”

I already feel what’s coming. I’m the only one with a precision blaster. I’m the only one who knows how to handle it.

“Tyrus and I will stay here. I’ll try to get those troops to leave the safety of the cannon. The bends in this gorge will prevent that cannon from shooting from a distance, so they’ll be without cover. Even though they’re Rebels, they’re not stupid, I guess. So they won’t go too far ahead. It only spreads their attack out, and what’s more, it will draw their attention. But whatever you do, officer VeR, stay low when you hide in the top floor of that building there. Wait until you get a clear shot at the gunner. You won’t get a second chance. And shoot before they do. That’s our only chance of survival. Now quickly, take your position. Tyrus, you stay here with me. Let’s give them a surprise.”

It’s clear how agent An rose through the ranks so quickly. I can’t see a better way to save ourselves. But I have to do it. I have to pull the trigger. If I don’t, we’re dead. I have to do it. No time for compassion, no time for reason.

What a beautiful building. I can see a haunting glow coming through the hallway, but that’s not the way I have to take. The ancient stairs take me to the place where it’ll have to become thirteen. Just as I squeeze myself into a dark corner with a good view of the bridge, agent An makes eye contact and starts shouting, starts shooting. And hides.


[soNE Ep. VII] No time for architecture by Bert.VR, on Flickr

The shouting grows louder, and a Rebel appears from around the corner. It’s the first time I actually see a Rebel trooper. I only took out fighters. He could be one of my comrades. But he isn’t. He wants to kil lus, and so do the other Rebels that start crossing the gap to examine the shouting. Soon, they will be no more. Agent An prepares to take them out. I can just wait, watch and shiver. There’s nothing I can do. Nothing I can do to avoid the killing. Nothing I can do to stop this war.

Now, I can only do what I need to do to survive. The cannon is here.


[soNE Ep. VII] It's what I can't do that makes me who I am by Bert.VR, on Flickr

I have to do it. But can I do it? The shot is possible, especially with this particular blaster… A blaster that once was thrown away to save a life. A blaster that was used to talk about bravery in battle. A blaster that was given to me to be brave. To take this one shot. It was an object of battle, but the acts of a very special person made it an object of love. But that’s not how people saw it. That’s not how my parents saw it. That’s as I can’t see it right now. It has to become an object of horror once again.

My finger is around the trigger. If I shoot, my shot will only make two victims. The Rebel will die, a part of me will die, for the thirteenth time. If I don’t shoot, my comrades will be killed. I will, eventually, be killed. One against three. It can’t be clearer.

Do it. Make it thirteen.

It won’t stay with one dead Rebel.

The thought resonates through my head.

If I shoot, not only the one Rebel I hit will be killed. Not only the others will be killed by my comrades. Hundreds, thousands, millions will die. If I kill, it will be yet another death in the long, interrupted chain of killings in this terrible war. It will hit the next homino and war will keep raging, the horrible killing will continue. Who knows where it’ll end.

Don’t do it. Don’t make it yet another million.

If I shoot, I’ll lose all hope of ever defeating war. It can’t be vanquished by always more killing and killing. It can only be vanquished by throwing away this blaster. If I shoot, no matter what someone will get killed and war will have yet another victory. And if I don’t… There’s an overwhelming chance I might die and war will have yet another victory. But if those Rebels decide not to shoot as well… If we, by some kind of beautiful Force, would now decide to throw our weapons down, war would be defeated.

It can’t be clearer.

If I shoot, I will lose all hope. If I don’t, I might lose my life. If I do, I will lose all hope. I’ll destroy everyone else’s hope that this war might come to a peaceful end, that all wars might come to an end right here, right now.

It has never been so clear. It’s what I can’t do that makes me who I am. I can’t pull this trigger. But that gives me so much more power than someone who can. Finally, after months of ‘training’, of dedicating myself to this cause, I can’t kill. It’s something that a lot of people never learn. Everyone’s always busy to learn to do new things. No one ever wonders what they have to learn not to do. But I did. And there’s a minuscule chance it might stop this war. With what we can’t do, we can change the world.

My thoughts never rushed so quickly as in this moment. And yet, I’ve never felt more enlightened. In these buildings, made by a civilization I believe was captured by that same light. Yes, that’s what these buildings were made for. But now, they’re going to be destroyed.

The cannon still hasn’t fired. I wonder… But the gunner has his finger around the trigger. But I have hope. I’m prepared to die, because if I don’t, the world will be a very different place.


[soNE Ep. VII] How to survive by Bert.VR, on Flickr


This blaster has become a symbol of love and hope once again.

I called Alderaan my home. It’s where I was raised. It’s where my parents were raised. It’s where my great-granduncle threw this blaster away.

To many people, Alderaan is the most peaceful planet possible. But not entirely. People of my planet always had that sense for opposition somewhere inside them. It’s one of the reasons they were the only ones to stand against this Empire, to no avail. That opposition was especially strong in my family. For generations, we stood against the rule of Alderaan. The reason why didn’t matter much. There’s always a fault to be found. There’s always the need for someone going in against the tide. That’s what my family stood for. That’s what they took up the weapons.

Almost exactly a hundred years ago, the conflict culminated, and there were several coordinated attacks on the existing rule. They might have had their reasons, but that’s not of importance. Two brothers, my great-granduncles, fought in the army the opposition formed at the time.

The resistance against the cruel acts of the opposition grew and grew, and a civil war broke out. The attacks grew more and more violent, more and more people died, and conflict without near end began. Both camps dug their selves in, with the occasional raid boosting the number of casualties.

And in this conflict, the two brothers remained as close as two brothers can be. They looked after each other. When the oldest returned after a raid, only to found his brother hadn’t, it became apparent that they loved each other more than they hated the enemy. Ignoring the orders of his superiors, he threw his blaster away and ran back to the battlefield, to find his dear brother. War didn’t bother him, he only cared about his brother. He was killed, and found with the dead body of his brother in his arms.


[soNE Ep. VII] Past - No blaster, no bravery by Bert.VR, on Flickr

This story has been told countless times in my family, but not quite in this version. The only thing that mattered, was the bravery of the brother. Without fear of the enemy, he returned to the battlefield, even when it was not his to fight on. His blaster became the ultimate symbol of his bravery. It was passed on in my family. Until was passed on to me.

The brother had no fear of the enemy. My family said because of his total hate for his enemy. I say because of the total love for his brother. I always opposed my family. But they only encouraged it. Opposition is key, they said. They didn’t see I wasn’t opposing what they stood for. I was defending what I think was right.

The blaster came to me, and they got me a post in the Imperial army. It would give me the opportunity to oppose the opposition to the established order, what I liked to do according to them. I had nothing to say in it. And since everyone on Alderaan is gone, I had no place to go to, nothing else to do.

But now I do, no longer armed with this blaster. It has become a symbol of love and hope once again.


Well, take a deep breath, that was it. I hope you enjoyed the story and please spare it some thoughts. Let me know what you think.

This was built in quite a hurry, with the festivities and the exams. Because of that, the past scene isn't nearly finished. There should be more buildings in the background, and a more elaborate dropship. I hope you can see beyond those failures though, and enjoy what's there.

This build and this story is a collaboration with fellow Imperials Lord Tyrus and goatman461. Thank you guys for all the inspiration! I hope there is still a lot to come.

If you still can read, check out their topics here:

Stranded, by Lord Tyrus (prequel to this story)

War Hammer, by goatman461 (happening simultaneously with this story)

Rescue Mission, by Commander Beltar (giving a glimpse how this story continues...)

And to finish, as always, the LXF file is availble through this link.

PS: the story of the two brothers is based on actual events. A hundred years ago, in the First World War, mygreat-granduncles, the Van Raemdonck brothers, went through a simular tragedy. Their act of love is used as a symbol of the Flemish movement to this day. So you see: my stories don't just belong to a galaxy far far away. I hope this is a proper tribute to them. Learn more about them on Wikipedia, and this page has a nice picture, and if you translate it, the whole story.

PPS: here is a short version for everyone who has little time or trouble with English:

Present scene (top)

Goatman461, Lord Tyrus and BEAVeR were flying over a cold planet, when their ship gets shot by a Rebel cannon. They crash and hurry into the mountains, chased by the Rebels. Their plan is the following: Goatman draws the attention of the troops, distracts them and tries to kill the people on foot. But there's still that cannon. BEAVeR has a special precision blaster and hides on a spot with a clear view at the gunner. But when the time comes, he begins to doubt. If he doesn't shoot, his friends and he will die. But if he does, he will lose all hope that war will stop. If he kills, others will come to avenge. Everyone just shoots because they expect to get shot. So if you don't shoot, you keep the hope for the end of the war. He can't do it, but that's why he can make a difference. So he doesn't shoot.

Past scene (bottom)

That special blaster is an object that has been in BEAVeR's family for a long time. His family always opposed the rule on their home planet of Alderaan. His great-granduncles, two brothers, were in such a war 100 years ago. When one didn't return, the other threw away his blaster and went back to find his brother. It's an act of love, but his family always saw it as amazing bravery, and the weapon was used to 'motivate' BEAVeR when they forced him to join the Empire.

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I feel bad posting in your thread because your responses are always so well thought out and thorough, but I wanted to express my praise. It is a captivating story without any images. The build is good in both instances. Good part usage and I commend you for using reasonable parts (not going overboard with exotic parts), which must be sorely tempting when being removed from the limits of physical pieces. The sparing use of color just makes the impact more powerful. I mean this in a good way, the story for the past scene was so good I don't know what image you could have made to keep up with it. Great builds, love the combined story you 3 presented, and most of all a story that pulls you in harder than the sarlacc.

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Absolut fantastic build and i love the idea with the colab!

For me is this one of the best entry for the episode because it looks so gread and combining the two MOC`s are really clever :classic: .


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Brilliant, especially the present scene with that blue! :wub: I think you may have just about beaten me lengthwise... :hmpf_bad::wink: But I don't mind, as the story is bribrilliantoming in on more of your character's sympathy.

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It's been great collaborating with you BEAVeR (even though you consciously betrayed Goatm). The present scene is a lot fancier than I expected with your time crunch. Those patterns on the building are inspired. The cannon looks amazing. The minifigures are posed just right. The dark orange compliments both the dark red and dark blue very well. You really out did my straight-lined snow/rock transition with your fancy, curvy transition. I kind of wish the building was dark red instead of blue and the doorway was open/clear to make the two builds match a little bit more, but otherwise I think you did a great job blending the two styles together. It is terribly frustrating to see what great things you do in LLD, in a bitter/sweet way. When looking at those patterns it looks so good (the sweet part), but knowing that the average builder is unlikely to have that color or quantity is a bit frustrating (the bitter part). I guess that's part of a larger debate on LLD. I know you do take pains to use real parts, which is appreciated.

The past scene has some great details. I'm quite sorry that you had to spend so much time working on the collaborative aspects of the present scene because I'd love to see what else you would do to your past scene. What you do have is really great and unique.

We've of course discussed your story before, but I just wanted to say that it is good to see an alternative perspective here even if its nonsense and I want to argue with your character the whole time I'm reading it. I don't see how we will be able to avoid further collaborations in the future so long as our characters are such extreme opposites.

Keep it up, your renderings, posing, and abilities continue to improve. You are really showing what all is possible in LLD.

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This is an excellent entry, as always - I laughed when I saw that it was "built in quite a hurry" because it definitely doesn't look rushed or incomplete :classic: I really love all the complex lines and angles you've got going on with the grey / blue building and you do a really nice job with the rocks and snow. I like the use of the airplane / train parts in your "past" scene - it's always cool to see those put to other uses, and you make them fit really well into the build.

I also the questions you continue to explore with your story. The easier answer, of course, is to say "I'll just pull the trigger in this one situation," but I think your character is right in thinking that there will always be another "situation" that calls for a person to compromise their ethics, so I admire your character for ... the phrase I want to use is "sticking to his guns," but that wouldn't be accurate here :grin:

These past few months have been hectic, but the new year should be better so I'd love to get in on any collaboration you guys end up doing in the next episode. I'm still trying to pick between 2 different story paths for my character, but they're both inspired by the suggestions you gave on my last build, so thanks again!

PS - that's quite a story about your great granduncles. My great-uncle fought for the dutch resistance during WWII and my grandparents were also in Holland during the war, but thankfully their story did not have a tragic ending like those two brothers.

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Your writting makes me want to write more for my story line! Great work on your first build, it's so well rendered I can't tell that it's LDD! The 2nd one is obviously more rushed, but I really like that ramp you've built.

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great build, the building is just brilliant, and elegant, its such a simple technique but the effect is stunning. the story, had me confused at times though, (a barrier of language perhaps?) your dialog with yourself repeatedly thought "it can't be clearer" yet the things that can't be clearer were in opposites of each other. so clearly you can, and can't but will and wont do what you need to not do, did I get that right? and in stark contrast to the indecision was the very clear heart of your character and his passion for what he believes in. back on the build I can't help but wonder what the giant hand holding the platform (the one the cannon is on) is about, there isn't a reference to it in the story but its design calls to me as something of importance, symbolic perhaps? holding life and death in ones own hand? or was it merely the extension of some snow covered great statue?

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Great build ! My favorite parts are the rebel vehicle and the background building in the second build, May have to copy it if these planes are affordable.

Also cool to see a collaborative that matches so well.

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Brilliant entry! It's great that you guys made a collab. I really like that ice cutter in the first scene. Another vehicle that got a perfect brick version. And the building made of plane pieces is stunning. Definitely one of the strongest entries.

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