QR-K85. Late Sunday evening the body of Karishal Muritor was transported from the UNITY outpost in 9UY4-H in a solemn procession led by Ushra’Khan. The recently deceased, a hero to many young and increasingly disillusioned Matari, was interred only two jumps away at a station named “Karishal’s Defiance” in his honour, the new name for the ex-ISS outpost now under Ushra’Khan management.
Speaking to the large fleet assembled in 9UY4-H to honour the rebel leader’s final wishes, Sapphrine of the Ushra’Khan gave a stirring speech to his comrades, excerpts of which follow.
“We gather here today in honour of the fallen. The comrades of a martyred hero, who have charged us of the Ushra’Khan with a solemn duty. We are entrusted with keeping in trust the body of Karishal Muritor, former Captain of the Republic and leader of the honoured Defiants who now live in exile for their beliefs. Struck down by his former comrades in the Republic Fleet under a flag of truce, Karishal died an outcast, a victim of political convenience. Until the day comes when we may return Karishal to his homelands to be laid to rest, it is our duty to care for him. Today we take this fallen warrior to a place of honour, where he may lie…until he may take his final journey home at last.”
Before setting out towards the new outpost, the fleet moved in the direction of the 4B-NQN stargate, in a symbolic gesture showing their initial wish to place Muritor’s body in the Minmatar Republic homeland as he had wished. In a moment of tense silence, the fleet slowly idled towards the gate as thousands of Matari, pilot and crew alike, laid their eyes upon the first step on the path leading back to a Republic that refused to acknowledge Muritor, even in death. Shortly after, the three words: “We go now,” echoed sharply across comms lines, bringing the procession back from their wishful reveries of a different future.
Arriving at the QR-K85 system, the Ushra’Khan procession was met by members of the ISS, who transferred their outpost to the U’K. Sapphrine once again gave a short speech:
“Today is an historic day. Today we mark the closing of one chapter in history, and at the same time, the beginning of a new one. We now deliver the body of Karishal Muritor to this station where he will for a time, lie at rest under our care. We have been charged this duty by Karishal’s loyal warriors of The Defiants; to some day return the fallen hero of the Republic home. It is the request of The Defiants that this be done peacefully and with dignity, so an appeal has been made to the Republic leadership that we may be allowed to do this. Our request has been denied. It would not have been Karishal’s wish for us to go against this and so instead we must bide our time, and wait for the proper day to come.”
Following this, a few members of the ISS spoke to the crowd, with Elisa Day first stating: “With the end of the ISS outpost era, we deliver this station into the hands of our friends, the Ushra’Khan, we hope it will serve them as well as it has served us.” Her words were followed by Argenta Nataf, who added: “We would like to thank Ushra’Khan for their assistance and loyalty in our time of need. We hope that this outpost will become a beacon of freedom and commerce in the galaxy and we have great confidence of its future in your hands.”
As the ISS representatives took their place besides the station again, Sapphrine spoke one last time:
“Karishal Muritor, Captain First Class of the Republic Fleet, recipient of the Drupar’s Star, chose to sacrifice his career and enter into exile in order to follow his beliefs. The great man defied the law to uphold his moral obligation to serve those who needed him most. He and his men sacrificed their freedom as citizens to fight for the freedom of others. Ultimately Karishal laid down his life rather than raise his hand against his former comrades and was gunned down in cold-blooded murder. In his final words he begged us not to fire upon the Republic, and did not defend himself against them. He spoke to his killers of the achievements that had already been made, and implored the Fleet to stand tall and united. He spoke of defiance, and of hope. It is to Karishal’s hopes that now dedicate this place. Today it becomes a new symbol. We name this station “Karishal’s Defiance”... Here we lay Karishal Muritor to rest until the day comes that the Matari stand again united in purpose. His return will be the day that Matar stands united against oppression, as was his dream.”
Afterwards, the fleet docked at their newly renamed station, leaving their ships to pay their respects to Muritor at the foot of his tomb. In a brief interview following the ceremony, Tar Kovsky of the Ushra’Khan shared his own thoughts on the fallen Captain: “In the course of his career, Captain Muritor witnessed a lot of suffering by our people, I think that over time, the lack of serious action on the part of the Republic began to wear on him…I always had the impression that he carried the ‘weight of the universe’ on himself…I know that it really tore him up to leave Republic service the way that he did, but he just felt that he had no other choice…he was someone who cared too much to stand by in the face of suffering.”
When asked of the future, and if they hoped to ever fulfil the wishes of Muritor and his men and take him home to the Republic, Mr Kovsky stated: “We of the Ushra’Khan take our commitments very seriously, and we promised The Defiants that we would respect the Captain’s wishes in this regard. The current regime cannot last forever.”
Shortly after, the IC also spoke with Kell Atorr, a junior diplomat and representative of Namtz’aar K’in who wished to comment. “We have been hoping that the remains of Karishal Muritor could be returned to his homeworld and his kin. As I understand, the Parliament objected to the manner in which Ushra’Khan proposed to return Muritor’s remains to Matar. Third parties did offer to assist…I think we must understand that Muritor…was a tragic figure. We support the Republic governments’ actions, but we take no joy in the course of events. Karishal Muritor spent many years in honourable service to the Republic and to our people, and that too, must not be forgotten.”
It is understood that Muritor’s tomb will be open for his kin and the general public to visit in order to pay their respects. It is expected that many thousands of Matari will make the long journey to the new outpost over the coming weeks to do just that.