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Kyrie Eleison

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  1. -̰̩̞̲͘-̷̥͔͡ͅ-̬͖͎̺̯̪̟̘̥͢͝-̸̡̤̙̠̼̥̦̥͢ …Thirst... Darkening thoughts reverberated across a dire mind. It had not always been as such. Scientific brilliance had fallen into shadow with the shattering of the heavens. Baser nature was all consuming. The abyss was watching. -̮̜̰͉̲̬̮-̥-̸-͇͖͉̩̘̹-̛ ̗͎̝ The Imperial Knight, listened to the words of Lok, followed by those of Adenna. The Force had led her to them for a reason, and that path was now offworld. Away from the shattered world. She nodded to herself, her heartbeat filling her ears with its unsteady rhythm. Something else lurked behind her struggling heart. She could feel a sense of unease. The Exorcist slowly drank from the canteen beside her, washing her mouth of the sour bitterness of her stomach’s rebellion. She focused instead on the anxiety and felt a fleeting spirit to it. She spoke through gritted teeth. Bluntness was her only respite. “Then let us leave.” The wounded teenager struggled to bring herself to her feet, and with help from Lok she succeeded. She leaned heavily on him, her fingers gripping his armored arm as it was the only way she could keep above her swimming mind’s collapse. As the soldiers assembled to move out, Kyrie meditated, leaning on the stronger Imperial Knight beside her. The unease she felt lay upon their path towards the stars. She touched it and felt no humanity. -̹̬-̨̥̺̖̭̣̭-̭͞-̞̻͎̹̠͙͍--̹̜̼̞̼ Shambling nightmare, unspoiled by neither lucidity nor benevolence. Deprivation. Boundless suffering, unbroken by death. A shade of the tombworld …I still hear their screams… -̧̼̪̲̙-͇̜̼͟-̢̼̤͇-͙̹-̯̭͖͙͍͇͔-̰̣̥̻̬͍͞-̠͙̟͍ As they walked, The Exorcist focused on her own apprehension. They were climbing towards salvation, but she could feel only the advancement of inhumanity. She stepped away from Lok as they crested the rooftop. The team began to prep for the oncoming shuttlecraft, but she was focused on a heartbeat that was not her own. A cold sweat beaded upon her neck. …Who are you? --̭̥͕̫͍͖-̛̝̜̫͕̻̖ͅ-͈͎̖̳̠̀-̹̲̘̰̪̹͖̀-̟̙̖̦͔͡-͏͇͚-͔͜ Indignant zeal gave way to discontented pain. Unrelenting starvation, the ravager of sanity. The depravity of instinctive mania. -͏͕-̱̺͎͍̥̻͕-̳̹͙͍̗̯̱--̵͇̫͖̯-̢̳̯͈̜̲ͅ-̯̥͕̹͉̹͘-͖̺̙-͈͚̼̪̲̪ The Exorcist bled all of her remaining power into her spiritual fire. The Malice was rising. Advancing. Hungry. A form tore itself from the shadowed sprawl of the ruins. …Sagitta spiritus A bolt of pure white light leapt from the Exorcist’s mouth, as bright as lightning across the shadows, striking the rushing form in the throat. The wave of ravenous hunger gave way to a swell desperation, before it began to fade into the background song of the Force. The form seemed frozen where it stood, silver flame pulsating from its neck. Kyrie stumbled as she approached, and both she and the form collapsed onto the rooftop with a clatter. ...Help... M̱͇̠̫͈̜e̱̝̺͉͖̰͔.͎̖͍.̗͈̱̬͙.͕ It was a young woman, the twisted form of an Anzat. Black blood bubbled from her partially cauterized throat, gurgling bubbles portrayed unspoken words. Her orange eyes were full of fear. Full of the terror of the abyss. The Exorcist gripped the humanoid’s hand. Silver flame connected them, consumed them. When the Jedi spoke, it was with grace and compassion. “Te Liberavimus.” The desperation left the searching eyes, replaced momentarily by peace, before the gaze fixated and faded. There was a mewing sound that passed from her chattering teeth, and then there was nothing. The Exorcist collapsed beside the body, still grasping the dirty hand in her own. She stared into the heavens and no longer saw the abyss of endless night. She coughed up blood of her own, spattering her face with crimson. She could hear repulsar engines. Her eyes searched for Lok. Consciousness faded. “The Force Provides.”
  2. The young Exorcist took the Jedi’s words into her mind as they came, processing them slowly. Her brain felt like it had been drowned in the swamps of Dagobah and washed up on the misty shore. She hadn’t been able to clear her mind in weeks. She shook her head once more, trying desperately to clear the mist from her mind. Abomination… Why was she so fixated on that word? Kyrie breathed out a heavy sigh, but still her mind would not do anything other than spin the word over and over through her mind. She couldn’t feel any condemnation from the Jedi Master, but within her, something recoiled. Do they hate me for what I have become? The Exorcist’s dirty fingers clenched into fists as she hid them against her chest, beneath the veil of her cloaks. She tore at a loose nail, feeling the pain sear through her as she ripped it from the skin. Pain cleared her mind for a moment. She could feel the blood well up on her fingertips, and she fought the urge to suck on the wound. She lost, and her voice was timid as she spoke around her fingertip. Her words were directed at Lok but they did not sound her own. “Do you hate what I am?” The Imperial Knight repressed the impulse to hit herself in rebuke. Why would you say that? Kyrie ground her teeth, revulsion rising in her stomach, amplifying the nausea with a deeper feeling of self-hatred. Realization came as she emptied her stomach into the mud. There was a crimson stain to the bile, but it disappeared into the tar-coloured ground. Teenage Insecurity. This is the ghost of my other soul. Her voice was frail as she spoke again, but it held her own intonations. “It is true, we must separate.” She spit out another mouthful of bile, wiping her trembling mouth with the back of her dirt-stained hand “Cloning data of my own form was destroyed on Kuat. The Force will find me a new form…” She smiled at Lok, a masquerade of stained teeth to hide her own self-doubt “If not… The Force is with me… And I am one with the Force.”
  3. Kyrie welcomed the assistance of the reconnaissance troopers that had accompanied the Jedi, letting them support some of her weight as they moved to deeper cover. It was another collapsed building, but one that was much more intact than many she had explored since the death of this world. The permecrete was crumbling, but most of it was cloaked in the façade of the standard officeworks. She didn’t recognize any logos, and nor could she decipher the faded arubesh on the rotting scraps of flimsi that piled up in the ruins. It smelled of ranat urine and stagnant water. She could sense the roaming spirits of those that had died there passing about her in a haze. She could almost hear their laughter. Side effect of being so close to a wound in the force. The young woman drank the protein solution, letting the bitterness of it dissipate in the rising nausea. The force was illusive, and she could barely feel its strength. Every time before she had drunk from its river and it had always restored her, but now that water did not flow. All she could feel now, was the unease of her rescuers. Mutterings of souls were of little comfort to non-exorcists. She took another swallow of the protein solution and stared at Lok and Adenna through her violet eyes. A pensive smile passed over her face “Master Alluyen, of all the ideologies of the Jedi, those that the Exorcist follow, run the knife’s edge that is the boundary between the light and the dark.” The smile turned into a frown “We take the dark side upon ourselves, consuming and debriding the wound that is left so that it may heal. I fear somewhere along my path, I strayed.” She stretched out an arm, letting the cloak fall away from it to reveal the anorexic flesh. Gone were the muscles and strength that she had been once blessed. “In that stain of corruption, the crucible of my soul was shattered. The dark side was used to resurrect me, but for what purpose, I do not know.” The girl glanced between the two Force users. With the expression of her internal frustration, a few tears swelled in her eyes unbidden, blurring her vision. “The soul I share this body with is dark. A tortured pawn of dark sorcery. It is because of this I can only see the Force as though through the reflection of a shattered mirror.” The Jedi shook her head, the tousles of muddy blonde hair bouncing with the movement. "What you ask is for an Exorcist to become at peace with what she swore to destroy."
  4. The Jedi let her eyes drift shut as the Lok Skyshatter picked her up. The man had followed her in her desertion of the Jedi Order, trained under her friend Knight Alekseyev, but she felt she hardly knew him. All she had known in her time as Grandmaster of the Imperial Knights was war, and the Holy Crusade against the Sith that had driven her from the Jedi Order. Chaos had led her into the arms of the Empire. She breathed out a restful sigh and focused on the faint murmur of his heartbeat that filtered from beneath his armor. She reflected on the life around her but could only feel the looming terror of the Sith above. Their darkness was like the circling carrion, feasting on the death and destruction of a dying world. There was a distant familiarity to the darkness. It stank of greed and filth, an odor far more potent than the unwashed humanity that clung to the skeletal remains of triple zero. As the man set Kyrie down, her eyes opened once more, and the peacefulness drained from them. The levy, that great isolation of the dying world, that which had brought her peace, had died. As his rough hands began to bandage her wounds, her voice was grave and haunted. “I did die on Kuat. I fell fighting a Sith Master and his legions.” The Exorcist gazed into the bloodied mud, remembering his face. Remembering his agony. Remembering his redemption. “He is one with the force. At peace, at long last.” Kyrie stared into Adenna’s blue eyes, her own violet eyes flashing with the reflection of the Holy Fire that had been the death of her and the Sith army on Kuat. She winced as Lok scraped some of the debris from her wounded leg, channeling the pain into laughter. It was a sound the old Kyrie would never had made. She swept her hands over herself, indicating her much younger form. She was half a decade younger physically than when they had met on Kashyyyk, but her soul was much older. “I was called to this body by its owner, and it is not my own. I do not know how much longer she will keep me. ” The Imperial Knight placed a hand on Lok’s head, giving him an awkward pat to try and indicate he should let her rise. His hair was matted from the journey, but it still smelled faintly of the standardized Imperial cleansing solution that all the refreshers were equipped with. She looked to both of them now as she slowly got to her feet. The pain seared through her mind, but she spun it away into the force, helping it to disguise her presence further. A mask of pain and suffering on a dying world was an easy disguise. She indicated the sky with a pointed finger, “You know how those scavengers love their dying Jedi. It would be like lighting a flare.” Kyrie took a step, focusing her strength into not falling. She appreciated his offer but it was too risky. “Best not to let this party be ruined by turbolaser fire.” The girl gritted her teeth, feeling the nausea grind through her guts, tinging her tongue with sourness. She reached out for his arm to steady herself. Another breath and she wretched out the emptiness of her stomach. Her shoulders straightened, and she brushed her hair from her eyes. “The Force is with me, and I am one with the Force. " Her eyes looked towards the horizon, concealed as it was by smoke and flame. "Let us leave.”
  5. -Snap-Hiss- She heard the lightsaber far before she could see it. It pulsated in her senses like a beacon of warning. There was a faint feeling of friendliness, but the world was a tumultuous storm of emotions now. The spirits were crying and it made detecting friend from foe much harder, as the wound in the force masked the signatures of all The Jedi scrambled backwards as the Rodian and the Wookiee made their attacks, but her attention was fully on the oncoming lightsaber. She gathered herself, letting the Force flow to her muscles, allowing her to quickly move over the shattered stones, ignoring the pain from her torn and bleeding feet. Silver... Its illumination crashed through her foes, and she could feel their spirits fade before the smoking pieces crashed into the rubble. Smoking blood stained her face. It burned but she hardly noticed. The form was familiar in style, the strikes fluid in their subtle brutality. He wore armor. ...Alekseyev? Did you not die with me on Cardia? The Exorcist rose to her feet, the mudstained cowl concealing her trembling hands as they clung to the long-handled lightsaber beneath. Her matted hair half fell into her vision, and as the lightsaber moved his face was revealed. She breathed out a breath of air slowly, and with it her anxiety and her prepared strike. “...Master Eleison?” With a bloodied hand, The Imperial Knight moved her muddied tangle of hair behind her ear, and she shot the man a sheepish grin. Nausea twisted her belly, eating only a protein cube in the last week had taken its toll, and now that the adrenaline was draining away, her relief turned to sickness. Her feet dug into the broken permecrete, trying in vain to steady her, but it was to no avail. The permecrete cut long gashes into her legs as she teetered and stumbled barefoot towards the growing number of allies, before she crumpled to her knees. “As subtle as a bantha, as always, Lok.” The Jedi Master gazed at him from behind her violet eyes. She longed to embrace him, she was far removed from the soldierly stoicism of her command. Behind him came another, one she recognized from the old days when she had been pledged to the Order. Her old form had barely spoken, but in a stuttering rush. Now she spoke with the accent of the Outer Rim, off the Shantilan Trade Route. “Forgive this reincarnated form, its master called me and I was reborn. It is not my own.” She glanced to Lok’s companion and bowed her head, cringing at the pain that racked her body “Master Alluyen, it has been many years.” Kyrie’s mind turned to the Jedi, distaste souring her tongue. She bit back the nausea. The Jedi had shown up to a crisis, and it was a welcome surprise, but not one that filled her with ease. “How does The Order fare under Trevelian’s leadership?”
  6. Kyrie kicked the torn boots from her feet, casting them carelessly down the permecrete ridge she had climbed up over the course of the last two days. The shattered stone and steel beneath her now bare feet hummed with the terror inherent in the dying world. It had been skyscraper once, full of life, but from the pain she could feel, it was the poor that had died here in the destruction of the ecumenopolis. It was nothing now but a crumbling mesa. As she walked, she left footprints of crimson upon the bare permecrete. Five days. The Jedi placed a protein cube in her mouth, washing down the gritty taste with a mouthful of rainwater. She let the metallic wrapper float away on the wind, the imperial insignia glittering in the refracted sunlight. They had been scavenged from a wreck. Looted from the rotting bodies of the mandalorians who had died on their basilisks. Their base nature had led to their deaths, and she had no reason to mourn the deaths of raiders. She was no Jedi Pacifist. A rusting steel beam jutted from the rubble, hanging haphazardly like a bridge across a ravine of wreckage to a downhill slope. The girl slowly clambered onto it, balancing herself as she made her way across. The steel coolly caressed her wounded feet, the rust grinding into the cuts and blisters. Wind swept its way across her, billowing her mudstained cowl and blinding her with her own hair. She stretched her arms out like a circus performer and calmed her galloping heart with a sharp breath. She was almost at the end, but there was something else that made the hair on her neck rise. -Snap-Crack- Permecrete shattered into dust and splinters tore at Kyrie’s face. There was another report and a hole punched its way through her cloak. The Imperial Knight let herself fall from the beam, her shoulder catching her weight as she tumbled down in a hail of stones and rust. She let her body twist and contort as it moved down the hill, distributing her kinetic force into momentum, letting the Force redirect her from being impaled on any jutting rebar. Eventually gravity gave way to the entropy of friction and she skidded to a jarring halt. The Jedi wanted to get up and fight, but there was something that gave her pause; there was a sense of friendliness nearby, vague and distorted, but there, nonetheless. Her own force signature was still disguised and diminished, but perhaps it would serve as a beacon. She pumped innocent fear and desperation into the Force. She lay as if dead, taking shallow breaths to disguise her life amongst her tangled cowl. The Imperial Knight could smell them before she sensed them, the pungency of unwashed human and alien. Four figures approached, a Rodian at the lead of two humans and a wookiee. The hard steel of a slug-thrower’s barrel bit into her back as he prodded her. One of the humans spoke behind a patchy beard that was squirming with lice. “Could have gotten her alive, Kato.” The Wookiee chortled, scratching at the mange that pockmarked his creamy coat. Kyrie held her stomach at bay as they leaned closer. The Rodian picked at her cowl, lifting it to reveal one of her legs. His rough hand stroked her bleeding foot. “Still warm though, Warg. I know how you hate when they struggle.” He slapped a hand on the Wookiee’s rump, and the crew roared with laughter. The allied presence was close. “You’ll get last turn Mak’ath, for obvious reasons.” Kyrie nudged the beastial mind. Why shouldn’t you get prime pickings? The Wookiee roared and pushed the Rodian to sprawl across the Jedi. As the weight came down upon her, The Imperial Knight slipped the E-11 from her back and put a blaster bolt through the belly of the bearded human and another that reflected off the permecrete to char the throat of the other. The Jedi slapped the trigger again to send a bolt into the Wookiee, but the gas canister misfired, slagging the rifle and nearly tearing her hand off. …Oh kriff. The Wookiee roared as the Rodian scrambled and withdrew a vibro-dagger. The girl threw the useless rifle at the Rodian with her burnt hand as she jumped to her feet. She longed to wield the force to her capabilities, but with the Sith in orbit, it would only bring a hail of turbolasers upon her head. It would be a fight like her old days in the fighting pits of Nar Shaddaa, but only now she was in a much weaker body. …Spast.
  7. The girl slipped through the destruction, the listless throws of a dying world, listening to the voices of the dead. Her teenage form was draped in a mud-stained canvas of mottled green and brown. Its previous owner had been a much taller and broader woman. The hem was tangled and frayed, stained dark with a half meter of the putrid mud that drowned the fading world. Once a glittering gem, shattered now as it was into mud and crumbling permecrete, no longer radiated the light that had made it the pillar of civilization. Kyrie’s scavenged, military-style boots slogged through the foul mud, the leather bindings fighting against the tide of tepid sewage and runoff. She brushed the hair from her eyes with her freckled hands, sweeping the blonde tangles behind her ears. The whirling crash of a missile caused her to crouch, nearly disappearing into the sludge. The rancid odor invaded her nostrils, driving her to nearly wretch, but her empty stomach allowed her only to shudder. She drew into herself as she heard footsteps slapping through the putrid muck. The Imperial Knight let the force flow about her, steeling her body, enhancing her muscles. The aura she allowed within the force was small and weak. No more than a padawan. She pumped fear into the force, but there was no response in the footsteps. No quickening of pace or movement of the dark side. …Not a Sith then. The Jedi thought about the longhandled-lightsaber that hung from her hip, concealed in the mud, but had no desire to attract even more unwanted attention. Clarity came as she focused, allowing herself to feel her surroundings. She hadn’t tapped into the song in far too long. Kyrie tried to burrow herself deeper into the mud. Perhaps it held some protection …Two sets of footfalls. Heavy armour. Their song was of Malice and Lust. A guttural voice cut through her silence. “Ber’aka I see a girl. Cloaked in the mud.” Kyrie stood slowly, letting her blonde hair fall over her violet eyes. “Pretty little thing. Looks half starved.” She faced them slowly, her eyes taking in their armored forms. She let the force crawl over them, exploring their armor, probing for weaknesses. Somewhere in the distance she could feel more Jedi presences, but they were not of her concern now. These soldiers were Mandalorian raiders, marked as Deathwatch. Scavengers. The Jedi could feel the lust in their eyes as they looked over her teenaged form. It reviled her, but she took the anger that welled within her and let it burn away upon her soul’s flame. She began to feel strength flow into her, along with a righteous power. Her boots set themselves, her muscles tensing. The song of the force hardened before her and she raised it as a shield against their wickedness. “We can feed you, girl.” The voice was sneering at her wretchedness. The other raider spoke, a gruff laugh staining his laugh “You’ll have to work for it” He motioned to his codpiece, which Kyrie found to be an unnecessary clarification. The Exorcist brushed the hair from her eyes once more, letting them see the glowing silver fire in her eyes. “Spast!” They stumbled and fired their weapons haphazardly, but the shots fried the mud only. Before they could move further, the Jedi Master was upon them. Her long-handled lightsaber was wielded like a baton, the burnished metal hardened by the fire. With a hammer-handed strike, the pommel crushed the larynx on one raider, leaving him crumpled and choking in the mud. The other was decapitated by a quick burst of energy from her blade, one sweeping motion, a single beam of light that was extinguished almost before it was lit. She kissed the onyx rosary on her wrist, thanking Il-Andon Rorik for the blessing of his power. The Exoricist stripped the weapons from the raiders, admiring the E-11 and the scattergun, slinging the latter on her back and holding the former in her shaking hands. The two vibroblades she placed in her belt. With heavy footsteps, she began to trudge towards the force signatures, letting her own aura pulsate with the inexperience and caution of a scared padawan, hiding her strength to draw in Sith prey.
  8. Aidan’s emerald eyes were clouded by the murkiness of doubt, Kyrie could see that, even as his body stiffened under her embrace. He felt different, more clouded. She stepped back and looked up at him. She was shorter now, and it made the whole world feel different. His words pained her, as she could feel his pain in them. It ripped into the force, unconstrained emotion. …I Felt you die… Kyrie pulled her blonde hair back, lashing it with a scrap of leather she had around her wrist. She stretched, her small muscles rippling under her pale skin. Her voice held a sorrow, but also a happiness. She spoke the code she had memorized on Ossus under Xae-Lin-Ardel “There is no death; There is the Force” She held her palms open before her, and her long-handled blade danced across the room, to settle into her grasp. It was heavier then she remembered. It crackled in its ignition, and it blended into her spirit. Her locus of control enveloped it and the silver blade became more then a tool, it held a part of her life within it. “To every soul within this galaxy, death comes soon or late.” Kyrie began to feel Aidan. Feel a deepset darkness, like a cloud of smoke obscuring the sunlight. His fire was tinged with it. She finished her poem as her violet eyes washed over him, taking in his new weapons. “And what way could I have died better, then facing fearful odds, until I was nothing but ashes out of the reach of God.” She let the blade extinguish and stepped close to her apprentice. “Your weapons bear the evil of the Sith… You will need training to overcome their influence. But don't worry, I will not take from you the trophies of war.” She was disappointed. Not in her apprentice, but in herself for being so lax in her training of him. The Force was filled with the chaos of evacuation. Children screamed, abandoned and alone. She gave Aidan a kind smile “To purify, one must know how to calm their own soul.” She indicated the evacuation about them. “Calm their wayward souls. Wipe away their tears with your spirit.” She pressed out with her presence, filling the room with a soothing calmness. A song of peace amongst the chaos. “Now you try.”
  9. A small voice bubbled to the surface of Kyrie’s mind, floating to the surface of the confusion and mystery that surged about in her rebirth. It was a soft voice, one that matched with the smaller and kinder form into which she had been called. It was filled with a gentleness that was soothing, but also a firmness that displayed a fighting will. …Blackthorn is my name. Kyrie stepped forward into the rush of evacuating orphans and whispered her own response, the fire of the Exorcists spreading across the pale skin of her palms. She felt powerful, unrestricted by the scars and traumas of her past. Basic came readily to her tongue, unweighted by a stutter of doubt. “I am Kyrie Eleison, Revanchist, Master of the Exorcists.” A small laugh reflected a victorious spirit. …I did it then, brought a soldier of Revan to destroy the Mandalorians. Kyrie glanced about the running children, her locus of control beginning to reflect the confusion and chaos of war. It was familiar, she had felt it when the Sith had come to Ossus. She had no knowledge of a Mandalorian threat, only the Sith had been her enemy. Her fingers curled into fists. Mandalorians. “Did Moon Knight finally attack?” There was no answer, only a feeling of uncertainty. The familiar presence of her apprentice burst forth nearby, vibrant and chaotic. It was like the fragrance of the Oerkanji bloom after a spring rain. Refreshingly alive. A heartbeat of life in the bereavement of a world in upheaval. “…Master?” Kyrie’s violet eyes matched his emerald gaze, and a kind smile formed across her unscarred face. He looked older, more battle-hardened. Chaos dripped from him into the force, causing ripples that washed across her. She held out both her hands, palms up in an offering of peace, but an unnatural instinct pulled her to wrap him in an embrace. She burned with the force, her heartbeat hammering her joy into both of them with uncontrolled flame. She was not as strong, not as harsh, but she was much more alive then she had ever been. “Aiden. I’ve missed you.”
  10. Misericordia. Emerald eyes fluttered open and a spinning nausea overtook the Exorcist. The body was not her own. Younger, less broken. No rampaging pain from shattered flesh and bone. She blinked and the world focused to a ceiling of cracked and molded plaster. Why did the Force call me here…? Kyrie’s eyes closed and she focused on her own mind, expanding the locus of control throughout her body. She could feel the rhythmic song of the Force, the sounds of the light as she had not heard since her work with Xae-Lin-Ardel. A gasping, shuddering breath brought warmth into her chest. With its release came silver fire that curled to that cracked and broken ceiling. Rebirth in Holy Fire. Why had there only been darkness? Where was the light? She slowly began to move. Her joints felt as though they were filled with lead and lubricated with sand. Another breath, a churning hiss of pained effort. The body was unnatural, a foreign form that her spirit struggled to control. The Exorcist rolled to a sitting position, closing her eyes to stop the world from its nauseating spinning. “Awenydd what the hell did you do?” It was a small girl’s voice, filled with a fusion of wonder and confusion. Kyrie could feel small hands gripping her tattered tunic and it was then that her nervous system began to take in the rush of proprioceptive information of her surroundings. She was wearing clothing, which gave her some small bit of relief. She was sitting on a lumpy bed that bore no bedclothes. The air smelled of sweat and panic. “What devilry did you spin?” Kyrie opened her eyes to stare into the young girl’s face. She had tousled, brown hair and a thin, kind face that was filled with shock. Around them both were candles and an old holopad that was displaying the history of the Revanchists. “You did it…” The girl jumped back from Kyrie’s silver-fired eyes with a yelp, stumbling over a pile of flimsiplast “You made yourself into a weapon to fight the Mandalorians…” The Force flooded her with sensation. There were familiar presences nearby. To those, she sent a greeting of Silver Flame. The Master of the Exorcists had returned. Misericordia.
  11. Her scream continued, driven from her smoking lips as much from the rush battle as it was forced from a body wracked by pain. It was a cry to the Force, her only friend left in the galaxy. As she screamed she could feel her heartbeat pounding an unknown rhythm in her ears. It was a death rattle, the shattered screeching of a ghost from beyond its cairn. All that was left was war. Her universe was all but gone, and all that remained was the battle in a breaking hanger. Kyrie’s arm was still caressed by fire, the heat of the blade still burning away at her nerve endings. The pain burned its way through her as she charged the Sith, delving deep into her chest. Concentration failed. The Flames died. All that remained were the screams of a broken girl. The dead came as the force fractured into a wound. A hundred grasping hands reached through the fractured metal, through the molten steel. She had opened herself to Hell. The Sin she had eaten was now being vomited forth. Her heaven, her gods, were all shattered. Words replaced her screams as the Sith took her mind. Come not to the stars. Come not with a shining sword. Come not crying over the dead. Come not with a disturbed mind. The dead shuddered around them. Kyrie’s lips moved and only a whisper emerged that only the Beast could hear. Do you hear the suffering? Do you feel their blood warm on your skin? Do you hear the endless torment? Do you smell the putrid wounds? The blackened boots lost their footing and the Exorcist fell. What she saw in the Sith’s ravaging of her mind was a mirror. A mirror of her own brokenness, of her own darkness. Her own Hell. As she saw the Beast’s journey, so he would see hers. The years of abuse as a child, always second to a much grander sister. A father as evil as a demon. Everyone thought I was cursed. I believed them, and so it came to be. Pain drove itself to her heart as a voice ripped through her vision. The Exorcist’s eyes opened, and she found herself on her knees before the forces of the Sith. Her face seemed to change every few seconds, fluttering between personalities with only one commonality: Death. If she had been a weaker person, she would have begged for her life, but she was not. Every part of her called upon the Force, but it did not answer. Her chest heaved with muted sobs of pain. There was no holy flames now, only sparks of pain and suffering. A deep sadness. Her breathing came in irregular, sharp, rasping gasps. Her lungs would not hold her breath, each exhalation brought with it curling, ashen smoke. Kyrie’s voice cracked. “You will have to kill me, because I have nothing left. No fear, no hate, no righteousness. No family.” Her face settled and a peace came then, but one born of confusion. She looked upon the Sith but did not see them. She smiled softly as duel lines of smoking blood crested across her cracked, thin lips. “Hayley, you’ve grown…” It was a conversation that did not exist anywhere but in her mind. She reached out with the smoking stump of her arm and sat back against a fallen durasteel beam. The beam was red-hot and although her skin smoked she did not feel it. Her eyes were from her childhood, of painful memories and bittersweet happiness. “When I lost you I learned the hard way to not be afraid of death…” A song began in the Force, a lament that was filled with grief. It made the burning floor about her sparkle as if she was in a dew-kissed field on a spring morning. “A life without loss is one without love.” Her eyes fluttered, silver flames sparking within them. If we turn ourselves from death, all we can see is the darkness of its shadow... The song fell away. The silver flame was replaced by emerald sheen. Tears of joy replaced the sobs of pain. Her eyes were open for but a moment longer as she looked death in the eye. At last she embraced it as a friend and left her darkness behind.
  12. All she saw was the enemy before her. He was the embodiment of all the evil that had been inflicted upon her. His cursed nurgle-flesh a reflection of her own scars. The dualism of her own soul was represented by the calm demeanor of the Sith, a cruel mask for unstoppable corruption. He was the stain on her soul. He was her brokenness. Her lethal evil. The pommel of her longbladed lightsaber bit into her palm, the repercussions of grinding the grip into her hands as her soul split apart. The curse of her youth was tearing her apart. Her brokenness was making her useless. Every attack she had made on the Sith had been ineffective, while he had wounded her. That wound still smoked and reeked of seared flesh, filling her nostrils with the noxious fumes of her own charred body. Why do you still fight this darkness? Pain reared its head again, driving the Exorcist to her knees. It was white-hot in her chest, it felt as though her very flesh was melting away. Black corruption flowed across the girl’s arm, boiling on her alabaster skin. It was like tar, sticky and seething with the rhythm of her heartbeat. The souls of every Sith she had slain was crawling from her boiling flesh. The lightsaber pulsed in her hand. Fear raced through her as the voices laughed in their mocking pity The Darkness does not bargain. It does not reason. It is rot. IT HURTS. IT BURNS. It has taken hold It is spreading To the seat of your soul Kyrie gasped as the forces that battled within her wrenched her from her knees, sending her slamming into the closed blast door. The force of the blow made her ears ring but did not deafen the voices. There will be nothing of you left All your suffering will have been for nothing It’s just a matter of time. The lightsaber pulsed again and the Sith advanced. Kyrie did not care that the beast advanced. She stared at the humming blade as it pulsed. It was her heart. It wasn’t a black heart, but a human heart. A heart that had suffered greatly. It held her soul, as broken as it was. The Imperial Knight turned the blade towards the Sith, and stepped forward. Hayley's voice hissed in surprise and fear What are you doing? The Exorcist smiled through her pain I do not care anymore. We all die someday and once everyone has died darkness will no longer exist. One of the Sith’s lightsabers sped towards her and the fear bubbled up. The voices screamed at her. The Hanger seemed to melt around her as she advanced. Her fire was an extension of her soul and it had begun its work. No, I don’t want to die. We don’t want to die Turn back! Kyrie danced to the side and brought her blackened arm into the path of the Sith’s blade. The crimson blade tore into her flesh with a burning that was all too familiar. She had felt it when the Sith that had raped her had carved his name into her back. She had felt it on the fields of battle on Gala. She had felt it and embraced it. This was no different Stop Stop Stop Stop When the blade hit bone, Kyrie let it pass through. She could feel the heat of it pulse through her bloodstream. The nerves screeched and died as the lightsaber severed them. Their horror shook her, but did not stop her. I’m sorry. I didn’t ask you to be apart of me. I never begged you to help me. More flesh burned, and as it did she turned the world to fire. From the blade she devoured power. She sacrificed for it. For a moment she was united with the blade of the Sith and as it took away her flesh, she took away its very power. Its crystal was foreign, unmade by nature, unclaimed by its will and she shattered it. As her arm fell away the blade died. She became something truly different. She was a Sin Eater. If you won't die with me, then leave me alone. Please stop, if you go on you’ll never come back There is nothing to come back to Kyrie Eleison breathed out flame of pure white as she advanced on the Sith, her one arm holding her glowing blade. She had shattered her world, and she would shatter the Sith’s. The durasteel touched by her flame bubbled and melted away as if it had been nothing but flimsiplast. The Hanger lurched as she advanced. No please don’t leave me! Behind her, the arm melted into corruption, a stinking, boiling mess of black. True torment lay within her, in the memories she could not escape or defeat. She was freed from the voices, but she had walked into her own personal Hell, and she would bring the Sith with her. Kyrie drove through the hail of lightsabers as they had come. She had shattered their brother, and they would not harm her now. The Hanger was falling apart and the liquid, white-hot metal followed her in a rainstorm. With the screams of the exorcist, The Force obeyed and thousands of droplets of liquified durasteel rushed to destroy the Beast.
  13. All Kyrie could hear was the song, the chorus of voices in her head from which she drew her power. The blackened and polished wood of the bowstave trembled in her hand, her arm shaking with energy and the will to fight. She could feel the power of the bow, the soft heartwood of Tython Yew, layered with the hardwood of a single Wroshyr branch from Kashyyyk. It was an ancient weapon, a holdover from the more primitive days of the galaxy, and a holy relic of the Exorcists. Her fingers played over the woven hemp soaked in nerf-fat that made up the bowstring. She could feel the nock, a small bead of firehardened clay she had made in the ruins of the old Gala Praxium. The Imperial Knight had collected the pieces of this weapon from all the significant places she had been. Kyrie slid another arrow onto the string, running her fingertip over the hammered steel that made the arrowhead. She taken the metal from dead Sith warriors, forging their accursed protection into a weapon to be used against them. The temporary high of Il-Andon’s blessing faded as the realization of the uselessness of her attack had been. Control ebbed away. Such a puny weapon Ineffective Your best effort didn’t even do anything The Exorcist gritted her teeth and let the feeling of the bow sooth her mind. Touch had such an effect on her mind, almost inexplicably so. The rough grain of the bow calmed her, but the voices of her darkness continued. She was with the force now, but she had lost the careful control she had maintained for so long. It would take a very long time to recover herself. Splitting pain washed through her from her injury, causing her to suck in air. The Sith thinks you’re weak He doesn’t want to bother himself with a nerfling Hayley’s voice now, mocking, cruel I wouldn’t even notice you, such a broken and twisted thing. Why would a Sith bother with the weak? Kyrie shrieked out through her broken mouth, sending a spew of smoking blood from her lips. SHUT UP! SHUT UP! SHUT UP! Nothing happened, no change but a chorus of laughter from inside her mind. Do you think you can command us? You barely have a command left! The wounded Exorcist began to feel. She could feel the death and the destruction that was taking place in the hanger. Her two squads were taking casualties, and so were the rest of the Imperial troops in the hanger. So much wasted life. The deaths were under her command, and she was failing her men and women. The sound of engines whining drew her attention to a landing Sith assault ship. Her troops were rallying for a counterattack, but she could feel the danger brewing and it drove a bite of panic into her. Onboard the ship she could feel true Sith, Masters, Lords, Darths, all powerful and deadly. They’ll all die. All your people will be butchered You should flee Kyrie’s heart raced at the proposition of escape. To run. To leave all the worries and evil behind. Her eyes widened You fought for duty, you grasped at the light! Spoiled by your darkness within You fought for your dreams She drew in a breath as her eyes darted across her rallying men. They were all going to die Now there is no way to win. Kyrie slammed the tip of her bowstaff onto the permacrete with a sickening crack. It drew all attention to her. To the voices she whispered her denials. You can break me… But not my promise. Her darkness was a deep stain upon her soul. It stank worse then the seared flesh on her face. It would not allow her to retreat, not even in her doubts. It wanted her fully, to give herself over to it, to the hands of the sith. Turning to run was but an instinct of madness, but fear was not as powerful as loathing. She would fight. She whispered to the Sith with many voices. I will go into the lair of the beast. I will look it in the eye And I will go to war. The longhandled lightsaber skittered across the ground, drawn to her hand. She was panicking, but she would not let them break her. She would not let her men and women die. She projected an order through the force, slamming it into the minds of the Imperials with the force of a scream. ...Andromeda, take your men and mine. Leave this place. There is more evil nearby. I will take these evils upon myself. Live to fight another day She stared into the eyes of the beastial Sith. They were onyx, like the colour of her many braids that were now matted with blood, both hers and her enemies. Her own eyes were clouded. The stormy seas of a lost soul. The Sith’s eyes were invitingly evil and she reached out a hand. There is nothing left for me. But the hand was not pointed to him, but the landing Sith assault shuttle, filled with his reinforcements. Sith Masters and their apprentices, she could feel them humming with energy. They were filled with the rage of war, and it made her smile. They were ready for the slaughter, to claim scalps and ravage the populace. Hell was reaching deep inside of her. You are weak Pathetic The Beastial Sith would feel fingers digging in around his throat, and there was a small pause as the Imperial troops reacted to her message. The force wrenched, and the Sith Assault shuttle was crushed. She could feel the horror and terror from the Sith inside as they were ground into macerated chunks of flesh by the Force. The hulking metal abomination looked like a cheap child’s toy as it was mangled and crushed into gleaming and twisted chunks. Blood and coolant mixed into a smoking river before it was ignited into silver flame. She would need no help holding the hanger. She would die as she had lived, alone and isolated. When her time came, she would look death in the eye, as an old friend. I will not let the battle go.
  14. Kyrie felt it then, something distractingly familier. A glimpse of her home, but a home engulfed by flames. She gasped through gritted teeth at the sudden feeling, and felt heated blood splash over her tongue. It tasted of copper and burnt meat. Her face hurt. Adrenaline had been a temporary relief, but now her nerves screamed with pain and her body felt weak. The hangerbay swam before her eyes as the Imperial Knight touched her wound with a half-gloved hand. It came away with blackened, steaming blood which coursed down her pale fingers. The droplets followed the tracks of the scars on her pale flesh to drip in rivulets down her rosary. What was that? The Exorcist moved forward as the Sith retreated behind his men, and challenged the Sith troopers that stood before her. Look out. She pirouetted around the crimson beam of light out of instinct alone. The voice was not her own, but it was female and drove an edge of panic into her. In that panic she lost her grace and slipped on a pool of coolant on the hanger floor. As her blackened leather boot slid from beneath her, she grabbed onto the disrupter rifle that had fired the shot and dragged the Sith trooper with her into the fall. Kyrie landed in a sprawl, no dignity or grace, entangled with the much larger Sith Trooper. Her lightsaber clattered on the decking and went out. The man was a giant, and his large hands were about her throat before she could react. The pressure of his grip made her choke and squirm, her hands trying to find purchase on the Sith’s face. She spat through her broken teeth Off. The Master of the Exorcists had expected the man to fly off of her into the ceiling, but the Force did not move to her command. Her silver eyes widened as they turned back to emerald. She couldn’t feel anything. No righteous fury, no judgement. Not even Il-Andon Rorik’s rosary gave her the comfort it had moments before Why... “Kriffing Imperial Scum!” Kyrie could smell the ale on the man’s breath, the rage that was in him. His eyes were piggish and wild. She had seen them before as a girl. His grip slackened for a moment as he picked her up by her neck, and she gasped in air. She had never thought she would be thankful for the acrid, recycled air of combat. He slammed her head into the decking and her vision became clouded by stars. Pain throbbed through her whole body as she wriggled and spasmed. The voices came to her again, like they had before Tython You touched the darkness, we could all see its scar in your hollow eyes. You ran from it. You ran and brought it home. Kyrie gargled an apology. The Sith trooper only squeezed harder, enjoying the feeling of her larynx beneath his fingers. The apology was not to him, but to the swarming voices in her head. The voices had been the cause of the isolation of her youth, locked away as an embarrassment by her Mandalorian father. Her mother had seen the voices and personalities that had passed over her daughter as a sign that Kyrie had been touched by the gods. It had taken her voice, and left her only song. Your gaze averted from life. You looked only on the dead. She tried to scream but she did not have the air. The voice that warned her came back You ran and brought the darkness to me. You cursed me with an endless suffering worse than death. You let it crawl into me, and now it rots me. The Imperial Knight knew the voice now, knew its pain. She gasped out a name ...Hayley… Do you still hear my screams? In this waking nightmare, my horrors came true. Your quest for justice, for righteousness, what good did it do me? Kyrie’s spasming fingers gripped onto her own leg as her other hand pried at the Sith’s armour. They’ve taken my soul. No. No. NO! Horror overcame her. Over her swollen tongue Kyrie cried the word no. She cried it again and again. She still cried it as she drove her stiletto knife under the stomach armor of the Trooper, and cried no as she drove her hand through his guts and fascia. Her tears of rage were uncontrollable as she drove the blade deeper into the man. He made a high pitched squealing sound and thrashed, but now she was in control. She twisted the knife and ripped it free, feeling his warmth spray onto her. She coughed as the man’s guts flooded over her in a wave of awful. The voices flooded her mind and they were terrifying. Accusatory. Derisive. But above all was the voice of her sister, Hayley Fieldgrey. It was mocking and it drove beastial fear into her. The last time Kyrie had seen her sister was when the girl had fled their home when it had been ravaged by the Sith. She could still see those hazel eyes looking on in fear as Kyrie had been raped and tortured. She could still see the young girl slip out into the night in her small white nightgown, stepping over the beheaded corpses of their mother and brother. It had been a betrayal that defined them both. The perfect daughter had abandoned her broken sister to die. What are you doing? You are showing weakness. Pick up your blade and fight! She’s weak. You’ve always been weak. Hayley’s mocking voice overwhelmed the others You’re not a warrior, you’re a disgrace to the gods. Kyrie screamed again, but it came out as a spray of blood without sound. Her trembling hands found the handle of a vibroax on the Sith’s belt. Its handle was worn and made from hardened wood. Pick it up. Fight it. Fight them. Kill them. Pick it up. She is scared Blasterfire ricocheted about her, spanging off the permacrete to fill her vision with sparkling light. She hugged the ax to her chest. What a poor little girl She’s scared Fight them With emerald eyes she stared at the line of the Sith Troopers. They fired relentlessly. They were the enemy. They were what kept her from saving Hayley. Only suffering brings salvation. It is the way of the gods. Do you not believe in our gods? Kyrie charged the Sith line like a beast. She hadn’t touched this ferocity since she had killed the Sith that had kept her as a slave. He had enjoyed scarring her, and for every scar he had etched into her, she had tortured him back. She had taken her time killing the sadistic man. She spat blood at the Sith as she sprinted. No. It is not the gods that cause suffering, it is those close to us. The Force came back to her in a rush of power as she left the influence of the ysalimiri. The power was unfocused, but it fueled her. She was the Sword of the Empire, and she was ferocious. She was fed by the desire to save the galaxy, but it was bitter feast. As she used the force, she fed the darkness in her soul. It was the fate of the uncontrolled and uncautious. Instead of flames, there was an lawless wildfire of silver. The voice of Il-Andon Rorik came then to her mind Hell will not give you the answers you want. But you must not look away from the horror it does offer, for you cannot overcome suffering if you refuse to look. The vibroaxe bit into the helmet of one of the Sith as she drove it down, dragging the gleaming metal through skull until it lodged in his ribcage. The Imperial Knight’s fire drove them back. Sent them sprawling. She ensnared a young lieutenant with her flames and sent his burning, screaming corpse flying at the Eweb. And then she saw him, the horned beast back again. He was marked by his twin blades and she brought the axe up to block the first attack. The rapier-blade of the lightsaber glanced off the crimson-stained Axehead and sliced through the wooden handle, making her weapon useless. Kyrie jumped backwards to safety, but her mind was solely focused on the destruction of the wicked, so she did not abandon the fight. To her hand came the wooden stave of her longbow, twisting it off her back as she flew. The fletching of woodgrouse was soft upon her bloody fingertips as she notched an arrow in the handwoven string. As she landed amongst her troops, she drew back the longbow. Kyrie blessed the arrow with her flame and let it fly towards the beastial Sith. It was propelled with a line of holy fire that lit up the hanger like a flare as it flew towards the Sith’s black heart. She would end the fight here and now.
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