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Ziost


Tarrian Skywalker
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As there has been interest in using the Ruins of Ziost for further RP, I have pulled this thread out of the archive. It was archived after its destruction in 2010 by the Death Star in the following post, which I will quote here to mark the moment in the planet's past when it was destroyed for the benefit of any future visitors:

 

"Heh," says Quintus. "Martians. Weird."

 

The superlaser slams into the planet and penetrates to the core in a matter of seconds. Moments later the molten center is awash with energy, and it pulses outwards.

 

Ziost seems to pause for a minute, as if holding her breath, and a moment later she explodes.

 

The crust explodes outwards with enough force to send debris hurtling for thousands of kilometers around at massive velocities, and the core expands outwards in a massive, fiery miasma of superheated gas and incandescent magma, engulfing all life in a matter of seconds and ushering it into the great hereafter.

 

A few moments later a ring hundreds of thousands of kilometers in diameter rushes out, tinged with city-sized chunks of mantle, and expands into space, the vacuum hungrily biting into the colossal explosion of energy.

 

All in all, it was pretty damn cool.

 

"All in all," says Quintus, chuckling and turning around to look at Black, "that was pretty damn cool." He registers the former Emperor's vacant expression and rolls his eyes dismissively. "Oh. Right. Still afk'ed."

 

Quintus prods some of the men, marveling at their complete lack of responsiveness, and taps new coordinates into the navigational console. The Death Star begins to move again.

 

"One last thing to do, then," he says to nobody in particular, "and then I'll blow this popsicle stand. Quite literally." He glances at Black again and pats him on the shoulder. "Bud, if you're hearing any of this, I'd get the hell out of here pretty much nowish."

 

Quintus walks past and out, taking a turbolift towards the core of the giant space station.

 

Carry on.

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Into the asteroid field that was all that remained of Ziost the Sith Master Haphaestus flew. Upon the Helios he came, and with him were Darth Angelia and his two Force-sensitive scout droids, NYX-1 and NYX-2. Though they differed dramatically in approach, they were unified in purpose and design.

 

Approaching the outskirts of the great asteroid field that had once been a world, Haphaestus turned upon it the ship's instruments even as through the Force he stretched out his own perception. The dark side remained strong here; the rocks were steeped with it. Amidst the endless debris and islands of rock and metals there lingered untold secrets. Partially intact Sith structures and artifacts drifted amidst the ruins of a vast conflict, the husks of capital ships of Imperial and New Republic designs. And there loomed, beyond it all as if standing watch over the millions of twisted bodies and shattered fleets and bidding the galaxy never again return to a conflict as bloody or destructive, the abandoned Death Star. For though so much of this carnage its mighty superlaser had wrought, it slumbered now inoperable, a tool bereft of purpose, an agent of the wicked men of a bygone war.

 

Haphaestus would its vigil evade to plunder what secrets he and his crew might find among the dead. But they were not here as looters of trinkets to turn some meager profit, and here they had been led in search of a location that remained elusive.

 

"Do you sense it near?" he asked Kitaara. "Let us search and see what we might find." There could yet be some semblance life among the bodies. Ever since the earliest days of the Sith, there were some that had bound themselves to objects or locations that they might linger beyond bodily death. Perhaps some specter would meet them and through its tale relate forgotten lore or some clue on where to find it. Haphaestus searched in the Force for any hint as where he might find such a being, but only through time and focused effort could the technique be expected to yield results.

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"I sense..." Darth Angelia trailed off as if she were sniffing a scent on the wind, reaching through the Force to take the proverbial temperature of her environment. The scream of death, the torn fabric of the Force, the abomination of life itself lingered here, as huge chunks of what was once the planet Ziost careened carelessly through space. The dark side hovered thickly here, a void in the order of life. She could not readily discern why the Force had brought them to Ziost, but they would go spelunking in the murky depths of power nonetheless. "There is something for us to find here, whether or not it is the full extent of what I can see in my visions. It would be unwise to disregard it nonetheless."

 

Moving to the cargo hold, Kitaara shed her velvet cloak for the wrappings of her vac-suit. Haphaestus would not need one, his systems capable of self-sustaining even in the absence of air pressure and vacuum. Activating the pressurized seal, she entered the airlock, trailed closely by NYX-1 and NYX-2. She maintained a tether to the ship, but the controls on her suit were capable of propulsion in some small manner. Standing on the outside of the ship, her boots magnetically locked to the ship's hull plating, Kitaara gestured to a large collection of asteroids that made up the bulk of the planet.

 

"NYX-1, NYX-2, deploy. Find the center of the disturbance," she ordered.

 

Now they would see how efficient Haphaestus' creations could be, absent the worry of being discovered.

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For when devils do the blackest sins put on, they do suggest at first with heavenly shows...

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The Helios' gleaming Nubian hull mirrored the destruction around them, but the Sith themselves were immune, and with calm demeanor they surveyed their environment. Periodically a shard of doonium or a fist-sized stone would hurtle towards the ship and vaporize itself upon its deflector shields in a show of light, but still they gazed unperturbed into the vast graveyard.

 

Haphaestus knelt upon the starship's hull, clad in his robe just as he had been aboard, deep in the Force, following its currents and eddies. When she spoke, he turned to look upon Kitaara, and for a moment as she moved back to the hatch from whence she would dispatch their scouts, her head passed before the ship's searching floodlamps and so was wreathed in light. Though not given easily to emotion, the dark lord did for a moment acknowledge to himself his pride for his former student. Together a long way had they traveled from the ryll mines of Ryloth where hopelessly she had toiled, that today they might plumb the depths of this ruined world in search of the great secret of her visions and ruminations borne of the dark side which she now well knew. That she was now his greatest and most trustworthy ally, one who had shared in what was among his greatest victories, was proof of the effectiveness of his vision for a unified Sith.

 

NYX-1 and NYX-2 were neither privy to such matters nor worthy of them.

 

"Oh wow... it's all so pretty!" NYX-1 exclaimed. "Oh!" With the flash of her repulsors, she bounced away from the ship and snatched a stone from its wayward path which glittered with some ore deposit that had until the battle been long buried in Ziost's crust. She then tucked it safely into one of her compartments for later study.

 

NYX-2 was far more cautious. His light blaster cannon swiveled rapidly as if targeting each asteroid as he identified them. "Searching for targets."

 

Haphaestus gazed upon them, for now tolerant of their idiosyncrasies. "Listen well to your orders," he bade them. "Follow the Force, not your sensors. NYX-1, we have not the time nor desire to gather everything of note here. We are interested in objects and locations of dark side activity. And NYX-2, you are not to engage any threat you detect without explicit orders. Both of you are to report immediately if through the Force you encounter a nexus of energy."

 

"Yes, Master," in unison the droids responded, and then off into the crumbling debris they departed.

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WIth great dispatch, the two droids careened across the expanse of debris before them. Kitaara noticed with some amusement that as NYX-1 went along, her telescoping arms seized onto several more trinkets that floated through space, though true to her orders she was careful not to let her fascination slow her progress. The droids' mechanical voices echoed in the helmet of her vac suit, keeping her and Haphaestus both apprised of the situation.

 

"Strong readings from sizable asteroid. Appears to have been some kind of meeting hall on the planet."

 

"Ice crystal formations! They must have developed when the planet exploded and all the water froze! Oh, they're lovely."

 

The sound of a single blaster bolt echoed across space. Shattering ice scattered and dispersed as NYX-2 sped away from his predecessor, who let out a vocoded wail.

 

From that moment on, it was relatively silent, and Kitaara lost sight of their scouts behind the planet's decay, keeping her mind sharply attuned to what they might be sensing. There was certainly something here, something she could not put her finger on, even if it was not the source of her recurring dream.

 

"Masters," came the excitable voice of NYX-1, "I found something! Come see! It's amazing."

 

"Affirmative," NYX-2 confirmed. "Dark side nexus parameters met. Recommend review."

 

"Acknowledged," Darth Angelia said briskly, severing her tether and using the propulsion system of her vac suit to send her launching out across the asteroids. She had practiced with the suit several times, but had never been in such an environment to use them, and found that Force-assisted leaps off of the asteroids themselves were about as enjoyable for her as they might have been for NYX-1. Before long, she had triangulated the location of the droids, and the source of their findings did, indeed, bring her a spike of thrilled wonderment.

 

On the far side of the asteroid field, dangling in nothingness between herself and the system's native sun, there lay the decomposing corpse of what looked like an Imperial-class Star Destroyer. The pointed nose was severed, and at least one of the shield generators was utterly obliterated, to say nothing of the state of the engines, but there was something about the ship she could not quite put her finger on. The droids confirmed the accuracy of her senses with a single statement.

 

"Life support systems still active on decks 12 through 14," NYX-1 gushed.

 

With a small grin, Kitaara activated her own comm, reaching through the Force for Haphaestus. "Dare we?" she offered rhetorically.

uCPChif.png

For when devils do the blackest sins put on, they do suggest at first with heavenly shows...

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Opening again the outer hatch, Haphaestus returned aboard the Helios, carefully guiding her through the planetary debris towards the Star Destroyer and upon it fixing her sensors. Though it had lain crippled for several years, there was still a certain dignity to the Imperial capital ship, the pinnacle of modern space warfare and scion of a design that had been for many millennia in continuous refinement. The size of a city, it had in its prime the power to destroy entire civilizations, though perhaps not as efficiently as the Death Star that now in somber vigil looked on.

 

Whatever its history or how it had ended up here, there was to the Helios' sensors no surviving sign of its name, and so for now its service record too would be obscured. There was no recourse but to investigate directly, as the ship did not respond to hailing attempts, though the sensors did indicate that there were aboard perhaps a score of living individuals, all human.

 

Picking up Kitaara along the way, the ship glided soundlessly forward as though not to disturb the slumbering dead. Haphaestus directed it to approach at first the main hangar, but surmising as he did that its decks had been melted into slag, he instead maneuvered to one of many airlocks that lined the Star Destroyer's ventral access corridor, according to schematics he maintained in his own internal databases. He chose one near unto the crumpled bow, in an area that seemed to him at least partially intact, that they might traverse the interior of the ship until they reached the habitable decks.

 

Tethered via a docking tube, Haphaestus took in hand his staff and with Angelia in her vac suit still they boarded, leaving NYX-1 and NYX-2 with orders to continue to survey the surrounding space. Slowly they proceeded through corridors darkened, at times waylaid by shattered bulkheads or deck plates treacherously warped. Few barricades could withstand Haphaestus' focused advance, however, and with the Force he cast aside these obstacles or drifted over them in absence of gravity's deckward pull.

 

At length they did make their way to the final bulkhead beyond which the air would become breathable, the last series of doors paired into a functional airlock. Haphaestus toggled them in turn to maintain their integrity, and at last the final door slid open to reveal the first of the answers they sought --

 

Beyond were, in armor glistening white, eight Imperial stormtroopers, blaster rifles leveled upon the door, awaiting whoever dared to board them. Beyond them, an officer in navy olive complete with cap, looking as if the war had never ended. "Hold your fire," he quickly ordered his troops. He walked towards Haphaestus and studied him with narrowed eyes. "That staff and mask..." he said quietly. Then suddenly he straightened and saluted. "Inquisitor Haphaestus! My lord, Captain Brask Yelgo, reporting for duty."

 

If by this turn of events Haphaestus was startled, with no sign visible did he make it known. "At ease, Captain. I have not held that title in some years," he stated. He surveyed the troops. "Am I to understand that you have been living here since the battle which claimed your ship, in absence of contact from the outside?"

 

The captain nodded. "Yes, my lord."

 

Haphaestus stepped aside to make way for Kitaara to become herself visible to them. "This is Darth Angelia. I believe we have much to discuss."

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In short order, Darth Angelia shed her vac suit, noting the risk inherent with being associated with Haphaestus' true identity by anyone other than her teacher himself. Up until this point, the face of Kitaara Shiri and the identity of Darth Angelia had remained utterly separate in any public presentation. The fact that he had introduced her with her Sith title gave her a clue as to the philosophies of those they had uncovered on the Star Destroyer.

 

The captain led them to the center of what had essentially become a refugee camp. Trapped here without communications or escape route, and yet sustained by the ship's life support and complement of nonperishables, they had become a village unto themselves. Resentment had built among them for those who had stranded them here for years. The remaining command crew accepted the presence of Haphaestus and Angelia with bristling excitement.

 

"Search and rescue teams must have figured Ziost was a total loss, because we kept waiting and watching, but no one showed," Yelgo explained as they sat down at the table in the makeshift conference room. "What state is the Empire in now?"

 

"Truly, it can't even be called the Empire any longer," Angelia answered simply. "The era of Emperor Deton is lost to the squabbles of the Galactic Alliance, and Raven Zinthos' new Imperial Remnant fraternizes with Jedi and mounts war against the Sith, driving them into hiding, when they sought only to liberate it. Maybe it's accurately named, now, because it only represents a minute remnant of what the Empire was meant to be."

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For when devils do the blackest sins put on, they do suggest at first with heavenly shows...

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"I beg your pardon?" Yelgo asked.

 

"I am afraid it is the truth that she speaks," Haphaestus intoned. "The line of Emperors is broken. The battle that was here fought ended with both sides nearly destroyed, but make no mistake -- the New Republic won when thereafter was formed the Galactic Alliance. The Empire's power and prestige were then stripped away. Zinthos was little more than a child at the time, and though in recent days she has withdrawn her Remnant from the Alliance, it exists only at their mercy, the sum of its once-vast star fleet no greater than was this vessel alone."

 

Yelgo's distress was apparent. He turned and led the Sith deeper into the ship, the stormtroopers behind. Scarcely a living soul did they encounter, though those they did looked on with great interest and relief at their discovery. "My lord, how can that be? Why has this Galactic Alliance tolerated the Remnant's secession?" the captain asked.

 

"The Remnant bears the markings of reformation from the Empire you knew," the Sith Master explained. "They shun slavery, welcome non-humans, have with the Jedi Order allied themselves, and value their member worlds' self-determination. Perhaps in further effort to mollify the Alliance and thus escape their wrath, they have chosen to hunt the Sith which once had made them great. The names of Yahn, Geki, Phillep, Faust, and Rustic are spoken only with scorn, and indeed I, though once their Inquisitor, am not welcome on Carida where now their seat of power lies."

 

"Truly it is worse than I'd feared," Yelgo finally said, visibly upset. "I almost regret to bring this news to the crew, though I suspect the prospect of leaving the ship and reconnecting with their families will soften the blow."

 

Haphaestus nodded. "How numerous are your crew, captain?"

 

"Only twenty-four have survived," he answered. "Considering the state of the ship, it's a miracle even that many of us did. Since then we haven't even had so much as an escape pod worthy of leaving the ship."

 

"The Helios has not the capacity for all of you," the Sith said, "but that is no major obstacle now that you have been located. We will return your crew to their homes, Captain Yelgo."

 

"Thank you, my lord," the man responded, inclining his head. "I never found time for a family myself, and I was rather hoping I could salvage my military career after all of this. But if what you say about the Remnant is true, there may not be a recognizable Empire that can use me."

 

Haphaestus regarded him for a moment as they walked. "Your devotion is admirable, captain," he said. "We have much more to discuss. There may yet be some service you might perform..."

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Their conversation with the former Imperials was brief and to the point. Angelia felt nothing; neither glee nor ire toward the group stranded here. Imperials of this man's era had been notorious slavers and xenophobes, and she took to watching him like a hawk-bat for any sign of revulsion where she was concerned, a nonhuman and a female. But quickly, a plan was made, and set in place; first and foremost, the pair of Sith would give these stranded soldiers back the lives they had lost when their ship was blown almost entirely to bits over the ruined planet.

 

The encounter as a whole only deepened her resolve to find that which called to her, a hidden nexus of power that promised her a unique path to freedom if only she could lay her hands upon it. As they slipped back inside the Helios' airlock, she confided as much in her former teacher.

 

"Haphaestus," she said calmly, "the darkness I see will undoubtedly change everything for the galaxy. I must not rest until I find it, though perhaps it may be prudent first to ensure the Dark Lord has received our gifts."

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For when devils do the blackest sins put on, they do suggest at first with heavenly shows...

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"I concur," Haphaestus responded. "It would not do were the Dark Lord to seek us out on Nubia and we were not present to receive him.

 

"We cannot yet be certain that there is nothing else of interest here, but we may for now leave NYX-1 and NYX-2 here so that their mission may continue. The vessels we send for the Imperials can return with them if by that time they judge their survey complete," he continued. Even if these attempts proved fruitless, however, Haphaestus had found in the Imperial crew something as potentially valuable; oftentimes indeed it was the things unsought that in course of time made the greatest difference.

 

Though his exile self-imposed within Rivan's fortress on Almas was not yet long past, and its duration had far exceeded that of his more recent endeavors beginning with the discovery of Kitaara Shiri, it now stood out to him as a time most unproductive. The resources that he and Angelia had since cultivated, though perhaps not yet as great as those which he had briefly wielded in the past, not only promised continuous growth under their guidance but also belonged to them solely. In his original position he had been given all that he oversaw by decree of Nurgle; as the Imperial Inquisitor he had borrowed tools wrought by the Empire; as Dark Lord he had first seized the mantle and only thereafter toiled to consolidate his power base. But all that now had been to his will bent or designed had not been by any hand gifted, and of these not least might be Captain Yelgo. So would it be henceforth, and for those he trained, and for those they trained in turn.

 

Now he guided the Helios out of the asteroid field by similar route via which it had entered. Even as he did he saw to the necessary arrangements. From Lemnos he sent for a trio of unmarked ships crewed by droids which would ferry the Imperial crew to the worlds of their choosing before returning. To NYX-1 and NYX-2 he left orders to continue their work, and explicitly he bade them to with the Imperial crew cooperate during any interactions they might have. NYX-2 was not to discharge his weapon unless first provoked by external attack.

 

Their presence then no longer required, the two Sith Lords into hyperspace did depart, distant Nubia awaiting them.

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  • 3 years later...

The ragtag fleet of spicejackers, pirates, and guns-for-hire slipped out of hyperspace at the edges of the space field that was once Ziost.

 

The three slaved together freighters laden with spice, mining explosives,  liquors, foodstuffs and more glided silently surveying the remnants of the world. Blimp stood at the bridge surveying the aged chaos before them. A darkness tugged at his soul here. It was somewhere he and Shim had always spoke of visiting. The darkness caused him to gasp as he felt the hinger within. It felt as if the darkness here validated his deepest desires, urging him forward to do the unspeakable; no matter what the cost.

 

He turned with a dark smile on his face, his off centered head giving his now unarmored body an ethereal demonic visage amongst his worn leathers. “As soon as the Actions are slowed, begin transferring all the cargo over. Then send the ships into Ziost. We will have no further need for them.” He had no doubt the ships would eventually be tracked. Even now a response or recovery team may have flagged them. Hopefully amongst the planetary ruins and lingering religious energies they had bought some time and some hesitation from the paranoid and superstitious.

 

Blimp had no doubt the crews would begin offloading the precious cargoes as soon as they were able. He desired to return to The Lady Legionnaire, but first, he had to coordinate with Nok Morliss’ henchman.

 

“Inform Captain Jorus that I will meet him aboard the Action, bring whatever security he feels he must have.”

 

Once the train of freighters had docked with the Actions, Blimp made his away one of the yawning vessel, nodding as he looked over the vast dark cavernous interior. His footsteps echoed off the far walls. His crews worked to load the other of the two Action VIs. Here, he could discuss with Morliss’ pirate freely.

 

Once the grizzled soldier arrived, Blimp offered him a dark smile. “One raid is hardly anything to gloat about; but we are taking steps to our ultimate end. If we hurry, we should be able to intercept another shipment. This one will be laden to the gills with spice and other goods. Dare I say, a haul double or triple what we just made. Are you up for another little foray Captain?” 
 

 

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Jorus stared for a moment. Then he smiled. Then he laughed. Life lit up the old spacer's face.

 

"You mad pirate, I've missed men like you! That blind insect whose got my heart on a remote control always has to circle a plate six times before he decides to sit down for dinner. But this...let's do it." He chomped down on a new cigarra and set it alight with a built in gadget in his arm. He proffered another to the spicejacker.

 

"Let's burn the stars."

 

_____________________

 

 

Jorus's ragtag band of ships, refueled, repaired, and rearmed, lifted off, and made the jump to hyperspace.

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Blimp nodded slowly. This spacer was a different sort. No questions, no what ifs or but fors, all he needed was an enemy, a ship, and a star to steer her by it would seem.

 

Taking the extended cigarra and using the cyborg’s lighter as well, Blimp took a deep draw, allowing the savorium smoke to swirl about his mouth and lungs before gently exhaling a cloud out into the empty bay. A smile crossed the Troig’s face. “Soon enough these vessels will be filled to the brim with spice and other treasures. Perhaps even some sentimental rock from the ruins outside for your benefactor’s eccentric collection,”  he mused, before turning his eyes back to Jaden. “But what of you master privateer? I sense that your will is not that of your own. What is it the blind magician holds over your head? What is it that you desire of this venture?” Slaves made for good fodder Blimp knew; and while Shim may have been somewhat opposed to it, Blimp knew it was an essential part of the galactic economic beast. Blimp knew, however, that those forced into situations where death was on the line were more likely to turn tail than those who had something to gain. He would not allow himself to be left stranded by anyone, not even so-called loyalists under his benefactor. Business was business and lives were business; his life was not for sale to the highest bidder. 
 

“Nok Morliss does not own me,” he explained, foreshadowing the spacer’s thoughts on why the Troig would work with the sleazy Nemoidian. “He merely appreciates the skills I bring to the table. Skills he is willing to pay for rather than develop himself. Skills he pays for. You are clearly a skilled fringer yourself, as evidenced by our latest venture. What might it take to ensure that continued level of service without cowardice in the face of morally questionable devastation?”

 

Nearby, the dizzying array of spacers, pirates, and criminal elements set about refurbishing and repairing their ships as they may. The stolen stores were quickly being offloaded. Once they were emptied, the stolen freighters were set on a collision course into the ruins of Ziost, shields disabled and bodies stripped of any useful parts to make repairs on any damaged raider vessels.

 

When it happened, the ships erupted in blazing flashes of fiery destruction that dissipated in the void of space. A spare cave-cracker or two left in the vicinity of the ships’ hyperdrives ensured that any remnant of the craft were unidentifiable without deep, galactic-capital level, forensic analysis.

 

As soon as the captains completed their conversation, they would be on their way to their next lucrative target; one with heightened security, higher stakes, and slimier comrades.

 

 

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Jorus laughed. No light chuckle, but a real guffaw that broke off into a coughing fit as the smoke from the cigarra was inhaled too fast.

 

"Not exactly what he's got over my head so much as in my chest," he said, wiping the tears from his eyes. "While back...about 7 years now I think...I had my first run in with Morliss. He was an arms dealer back then. Probably a bunch of other things too. Anyway, old customer of his had tracked him down, hid on my ship, and decided to take her personal issues out on both of us by...well, like I said...arms dealer."

 

Jorus took out the cigarra and tapped the end against his cybernetic arm, ash sprinkling to the ground.

 

"I guess I should be thankful I insisted on seeing payment upfront before turning over the real big boys. She was an amatuer, and my ship absorbed most of the blast. Even so, we were both messed up pretty bad. Should have died. Both of us should have. But the filthy rich bugger had a surgical droid on standby on his ship. Dragged us both in, and kept us alive." He licked his lips, then lifted his cigarra back to them. One puff, two puffs, then he continued. "It was supposed to keep its master alive at all costs. None of those moral restrictions you see in standard models. It kept me alive in case it needed spare materials. Well, once the bugger woke up, he must have ordered it to repair me too, because next thing I know I'm waking up on a bed with a new arm and a lot of whirring and beeping coming from in here," he said wryly, tapping his chest. "Near as I figure, I've got 40% of my insides replaced with cybernetics, and I doubt everything was nonfunctional when Morliss had his droid cut it out of me. Morliss told me I owed him for saving my life...never mind that it was a grudge against him that got me blown up in the first place. He gave me a choice. Ten years service...or he'd take the replacements back there and then." Jorus grinned around the cigarra. "Can't say I was happy with my new employment, but I plastered on a happy face and took the option that kept me breathing. Been working for him ever since. He pays well, keeps me in comfort when I'm not slogging through the mud for him." Jorus shook his head. "But don't be fooled. I'm an investment to him. Honoring our deal? An investment. My comfort? Investment. He wants me telling people that he's a boss who takes care of people and keeps his word. That way he can con them easier."

 

Jorus turned to face Blimp straight on.

 

"Don't trust him. You see an ounce of sentimentality or softness, you take that for the lie it is. Nok only cares about himself, acts out whatever part he needs to in order to get what he wants, and he's more than a little mad. Especially since he started with this dark hand waving stuff."

 

Squinting upwards into the sky, Jorus paused, then sighed. "As for me...I've been slogging through from day to day since I learned to walk. I'm too old to start having a life now. My plan is to finish out this contract, hope Nok doesn't die before giving me whatever code he's got to keep me running and let people tamper with my parts, and retire someplace nice and warm. Have some quiet." He grinned wickedly. "But that don't mean I don't want some noise to remember."

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Blimp stood silently as the spacer told his tale. To an outside observer, it would have been hard to tell if the half-being had even heard a word Jorus said. He had been rolling the cigarra in his fingers as he took in it’s every detail. That is, until the pirate stopped telling his story.

 

Pondering the story, silence fell over the hold. Regarding the cigarra, Blimp took a deep drag. Nok was even more malicious than he gave the blind lizard credit for. Had he implanted some loyalty device in him as well? Would he dare. “Yes. Yes. He would,” he whispered to himself before turning his eyes back to Jorus.

 

Exhaling a cloud of smoke over the human, Blimp nodded. “Quiet is overrated. Especially when that worth living for has been taken away. Why not make the years count? We get you through this servitude alive, squeeze the codes out of the wand waving warlock,” he waved his hand nonchalantly, “then, just perhaps, you come in with me, as a partner.”

 

Just then, Blimp’s comm binged, signifying that the stolen goods had been secured. Taking another long drag on the cigarra, Blimp tossed it on the floor and stamped it out with the toe of his boot. “Think on it. Spicejacker has a nice ring to it.” Blimp began to walk towards the exit, looking back over his shoulder to add, “You have the makings of more than a mere pirate or droid-slaved goon, Spicejacker Jaden Jorus. Just gotta prove you’re worth it.”

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Jorus stared off into nothing, drawing deep puffs on his cigarra.

 

"I don't know. I've been doing this so long...I just figure my number's going to come up sooner or later right?" Then he grinned. "On the other hand, not like I've got anything better to do, and if that spice jacking keeps me in the creds than maybe you've got something." He turned to Blimp. "Let's survive this venture first though. A lot of questions we gotta answer between here and there."

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  • 1 year later...

The Great Hutt breathed in, his corporeal form barely able to hold the air into his multitudinous lungs. The living Force, corrupted as it was by countless deaths, moved through him, folding into his blubber, filling his mind with its essence. With its addiction. With its hunger.

 

Ruins hung about him, ancient and twisted from galactic destruction. The Bitter Feast’s hull shook with the impact of a hundred asteroids; the remnants of what had once been the Heart of the Sith: Ziost.

 

The Master of the Krath could taste it all upon his waggling, greasy tongue; that corruption had a physical toll. He savored every death that had fed his power, the deep flavors that had been with him since the very beginning. Those he had slain on his path to power. That of his fellow apprentices. Luficer. Gelfast. Orion. The blood of his master, Ason Antilles. All those that had come after to feed his hunger, and yet he was never sated.

 

Another breath and the power coalesced about him, streaming through him. His rotting flesh, streaming fluidous maggots joined itself with the Force itself, and all of him becoming the locus through which the dark side flowed. All the lives taken from Sullust, Corellia, Nar Shaddaa. Everything Consumed, bound itself to his essence, in a pulsing insanity of hunger, a primal madness. A heartbeat of gluttony and sin. A power that consumed without end. A Force Storm that crossed an entire star system and at its center; a wound in the Force

 

The ruins, those shattered stones and starbleached bones reacted to the Hunger, drawn to the heartbeat like carrion to a bloated corpse. Spirits moved in echoes, matched in ravenousness by only the Master of Gluttony himself. The shattered, broken storm smiled for this place was more than the Heart of the Sith, it was the Soul of the Krath themselves.

 

He could feel the greatest of their number, some long dead, others yet living in the fringes of darkspace. The heartbeat embraced them, inviting their spirits to inhabit what was to come. Even the dark mistress of the Maw spoke then, her dark fingers stretching out to him across the rushing storm, reflecting the galaxy within her glittering web. An invitation to devour it all, to feed upon the Jedi, the Republic, The Empire, even the Sith. On life itself.

 

...Devour or Create...

 

For the first time and the last, what had been Sheog the Mad turned from it all; releasing it all into the heartbeat of gluttony. He could consume all the life in the galaxy, and yet at the end he would never be sated. To create was at least not a boring choice. To eat everything had become simply too cliché. He had passed the test. He would diminish, and go into the West, and remain Sheog. Bound as a shade to the same madness that would create the new heart of the Sith. 

 

The Force storm collapsed into itself, drawing the wreckage of Ziost into the wound at its center, binding it all to the heartbeat of madness. The Bitter Harvest became the core about which the planet, once sacred to the Krath, was formed once more. Mountains and valleys of crushed stone turned to magma and ice to ocean. The rebirth of life, yet corrupted in the image of its creator. A ravenous world and a Nexus of the Dark Side. 

 

-Ziost was made anew-

 

A living wound in the Force, kept alive by a heart of madness, fed by veins of hunger.

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King Kheldar vos Correlli said:
Sheog, I have to ask, overkill much?
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  • Esterhazy changed the title to Ziost

During the trip through hyperspace, Solus and Stitch-Mouth sealed themselves away in one of the workshops, working diligently on Solus’ new form. Or more accurately, Solus worked on the form. Stitch-Mouth simply observed from a side of the room and provided details to any questions that the shard may have had. It was time for the droid to learn how to make his own chassis. 

 

To be fair, Solus preferred doing this one by himself. There was something intimate and personal about this chassis. Something about the fact that he was building his own, much like his lightsaber. He was pouring a piece of his personality into this chassis making it more himself then his current chassis was. 

 

Not that there weren’t difficulties. 

 

“Kriffing scrap heap!” Solus cursed as an explosion of sparks erupted. Solus turned and chucked a piece of metal across the room. It clanged loudly as it crashed into the wall and to the floor. Tear, who had been sleeping contently, jumped at the noise and growled at its master.

 

“Stupid wires and stupid clumsy fingers. everything here is so stupid! ”

 

Stitch-Mouth stepped forward and looked at the shards' handiwork and gave a glare. Several of the wires had been ruined by being plugged into a circuit board improperly, which had just been thrown across the room. With a stretch of a hand, Stitch-Mouth called the piece of technology back and placed it in Solus’ hand, and pointed back at the chassis. 

 

"Oh kriff off you overglorified mechanic." Solus waved the alchemist off

 

However, the point Stitch-Mouth made was not lost. When the fingers were too clumsy, the Force would do. This time, Solus called on the impossible geometries. His emotion emanates outwards, feeling around. His envy flared out as his thoughts drifted on the mission ahead. A rescue. A rescue of an ex-apprentice.  Slowly, the wires began to move and rearrange themselves.

 

Solus could see his wishes clearly in the moments of letting his envy grab and rearrange the pieces of spun and flat metal. This ex-apprentice they were rescuing presented an odd opportunity. The envy flared from the fact that Akheron had another apprentice before the Shard. 

 

Suddenly Solus stopped and turned towards the closed door. Stitch-Mouth stood up straight as Solus began to talk.

 

“No no, you don’t understand, I know what I am doing…” Solus said, waving his hands towards the darkness. “If I simply kill this apprentice, I will no longer be Akheron’s apprentice…” Solus suddenly stopped and covered where an organics ears would have been. “No no no, not like that. Just simply think what i think…”

 

What i think

 

Stitch-Mouth raised an eyebrow. But he let the shard continue talking to its invisible thing. 

 

“Yes, exactly. My envy can be unified in this mission. Rescue will prove his weakness, and make a debt. A debt i will collect to satisfy another target of my envy. After all, i deserve more, don’t I?”

 

Deserve more, don't i?

 

Solus turned back to his work, muttering all the while. 

 

“But i won’t be able to help unless this is done. So go away, and then it'll be easier for… aha! There we go!”

 

Solus turned to Stitch-Mouth and presented the body. Its head had been completely reworked, with removal of several logic circuits and replacements of other important pieces. And now, its head had a gaping cavity in it to house a small Shard. After a quick overlook, the alchemist gave his approval and gestured to the empty shell of a chassis. It was time to claim a new body. 

 

Solus locked his joints, held his head over the empty cavity, and gave a sigh. Slowly, the head opened up, revealing the glowing crystal inside, its lines already spinning in a perfect circle. At first it only nudged itself upwards out of head, but once it had jumped out, it only drifted slowly down into the SP-4. In his research of this chassis, Solus had discovered that the SP-4 was a type of analysis droid. He had hoped that this new chassis would provide him more sensory advantages, as well as a more inconspicuous body that would blend in anywhere it went.  

 

For a moment, nothing happened. Then the chassis erupted with life, jumping up to its feet on the workshop table. 

 

“Ahahaha! Brilliant! Ah, I am truly brilliant!” Solus laughed through his new vocoder. “Oh so brilliant! So many new details! Oh my! Its like another ascension!” 

 

Solus jumped off the table and looked around the room, finally resting his sensors on the alchemist. Several times he flipped the sensor enhanced built onto his head down and up, much like an elderly man would adjust his glasses. It was as if to confirm what he was seeing was true.

 

“I never realized you had so many scars on your neck. Fascinating. And your veins...my how they've been bulging lately to be stretched that thin. No matter. Tear! Get over here please..."

 

Solus snapped his new fingers, indicating Tear to come. Once done, he jumped onto the hound's back, much like a child riding a pony. His much smaller and lighter size proved weightless for the muscular hound.

 

"Come! By my estimates, we should be arriving soon, and i want to be on the bridge when we do so!”

 

Indeed, for at the moment Solus, atop of Tear, stepped foot onto the bridge with the alchemist  in tow, the ship arrive at Ziost. 

 

"Ah what a glorious place, is it not? Is this everything you were hoping for Calypso? Master Akheron, you said it was destroyed? it doesn't look that bad to me. but then again, maybe i need to recalibrate me new sensors. It can take time to get used to a new body."

Edited by Solus
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The Eternus trailed in the wake of the Fangs of Darkness. The dead pilot’s head lolled to the left at an unnatural angle, his hands locked rigidity to the yoke of the yacht. Aside from him, who did not count as a dead man, the only entity aboard the hollow vessel. The Sith  had spent the journey sitting in silence, bathed in the washing whispers of the souls of the dead he carried contained on his person, contained within his person. Jedi, Sith, soldiers, artisans and commoners mixed their voices along those of priests and necromancers and rulers. Each spoke with an individuality that Inmortos had not known to carry so well beyond the ethereal plane of death; at least not without special care. These souls presented new opportunities and fearsome truths. Inmortos barely conversed, his eyes sunken back in unblinking fear as his deepest secrets were laid bare before him. Even as he sought to be remembered in this world, the name of Inmortos was known and whispered of by the spirits of the next, of the eternal silence.

 

Ah, yes, the eternal silence; it was not as silent as Inmortos had believed. This changed everything. No longer could he pry the last vestiges of secrets from the mind of a dead with a sacrificial dagger and the force, nor more mist he just induce the freshly fallen to babble that which brought about their untimely ends. No, now he, Inmortos, could have the histories he so fervently studied lived out before him. He would no longer study dying moans and dusty tomes. Now, he would watch as the greatest dramas of the galaxy were reenacted before him at his very will, all he would need do is subject these specters.

 

”ENOUGH!!” The necromancer bellowed into the empty blackness that filled his ship like ink. His hands snapped up cover the holes that made up his reptilian ears as if that would stop the babbling of the damned. It did not; nor did his command. They only surged harder sensing the Sith’s frustration at their very existence.

 

Slamming his thick three-fingered appendages onto the edges of the stone coffin he sat in, his blunted claws cracked as they ground against the ancient stone of the kingly burial box. With each crack, ice began to lace outward from the Vurk’s body. His breath exhaled in plumes of crystalized steam. The temperature within the ship rapidly began to descend to that outside. The fact that Ziost even existed was lost on the necromancer as he battled the demons that he now was privy to, a world within the world, a galaxy within the galaxy, a cosmos inside a cosmos. With a crescendoing by snarl, Inmortos pushed himself to his feet, his breath snorting in plumes of steam from his nose like an angry bull; and with his voice’s rise the temperatures of both realities plummeted until ice and frost coated the inner surfaces of the Eternus . The view screen grew opaque with frozen condensation until it was as solid as a whitewashed wall.

 

Finally Inmortos’ ears were assaulted by silence, pure, sweet, unending silence. The spirits, like the world around him were frozen, unable to talk, unable to move, unable to speak. Sinking back into his coffin, thr Vurk turned his seething embered eyes to the frozen corpse draped about the console. “The Nespis System. NOW!” He snarled as the body jerked to life, his actions guided by the shadows of life left at his passing and not by another chattering soul of the dead. With jerking unnatural movements the body righted itself, ligaments snapping against the cold as the pilot’s rotted frame animated and began the process to jump to hyperspace.

 

In a matter minutes the sleek black yacht leapt towards the arcing blue white stars leaving Ziost and the future of the Sith Empire behind him.

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As the ship exited hyperspace and emerged...Akheron was for one of the few times in his life, brought to silence and awestruck. He could feel the Darkness yes but more than that he saw what he thought he would never see again. Ziost in all It's glory had been reborn, much like Korriban several decades before it. But this was fresh, teeming with life yet with a more sinister undertone. The Darkness swirled like a whirlwind around the planet and the ruins were no more.

 

It brought a smile upon his face beneath his faceplate. He took it as a sign of things to come, yet another sign of the prophecy perhaps being true. For there were never any coincidences where the Force was concerned and the Fanged God, the timing of it all was too much not to notice. The awakening and rise of a new champion and just after the rebirth of Ziost. Something was clearly at work.

 

But he had no more time to admire it, he set to go his task.

 

Finally making his way to the hangar bays, he entered a combat shuttle with several Linnorms and Solus. Several other shuttles likewise joined in formation before they all departed, leaving the new champion to fight in ritual combat and decide the fate of the Sith while they refuse Nok Morliss...Krath Apophos from his imprisonment.

 

He hoped during his time there he had been humbled some. That a lesson had been learnt and he appreciated the effort even if they had a dislike for one another. And yet this rescue was not without a price. Krath Apophos would be indebted to the Clan and to him. Putting such a thought aside for now he focused on the task at hand as the shuttles entered hyperspace, following in Inmortos wake.

 

((On to the Helvault))

Edited by Karys Narat iv-Adas

https://jedirp.net/topic/4851-trodai-narat-iv-adas-darth-akheron/

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"The universe started in darkness at a time when light didn't exist, and that is how it will end. Chaos and suffering is what brings us together. In chaos a man or woman will show who he or she really is and in suffering they will speak the truth. We are darkness incarnate, we are the evil. This cannot be denied, even by me. But without us there is no redemption, passion or order." - Darth Akheron

 

I survived the Great JNet Outage of 2012

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Calypso stared down at Ziost from the bridge of Darth Akheron's ship. What they had said during the trip had been true. Ziost had been destroyed. But what she had felt...it had also been true.

 

Ziost had returned. It had been remade, a living wound in the Force. A casual onlooker might have called it a place of death.

 

But this wasn't death. Death was natural. Death was of the light. This was a place of slaughter. Destruction. Madness.

 

Hunger.

 

Calypso smiled.

 

This was the place.

 

________________________________

 

Dust billowed into the air as the shuttle landed. Slowly, as if hesitant, the ramp lowered. As Calypso descended from the ship, her eyes scanned the horizon. She had chosen this place specifically. The volcanic activity had receded here, leaving behind a desolate, igneous wasteland in its wake. The raw, destructive power of the planet's rebirth was here, frozen in the stone on full display. Crevices and rivulets ran across brown and black rock. Fissures belched steam and sulfur into the air. Above, sooty black and yellow clouds swirled and wove like fat worms, promising acidic rain.

 

She only hesitated for a second. Than her foot, the first, stepped onto the dark world. She breathed in the air, tasting the faint foulness left behind by the volcanic gases.

 

Around her, other shuttles landed. The bays opened, and the corpses of Inmortos' gifted army shambled out. Their dead faces turned to the sky, as if tasting the air. Calypso gave a faint smile. It wasn't something in the air they sensed. It was this place. This was place, that was as monstrous as them. A place as twisted, and as dark.

 

She gestured with her hand, and the undead fanned out to form a perimeter. She had no need of them right now.

 

"My lady?" crackled her comm.

 

Grimacing at the distraction, she lifted it to her face.

 

"Yes?" she responded, only a little testy.

 

"The ship will remain in orbit unless you need us. Is there-"

 

"No. Just alert me of any new arrivals."

 

"New arri-" She cut off the comm before he finished. She had work to do.

 

She stepped away from the shuttle, her eyes closed as she took in the presence of the place. This planet...a great, dark work had been done here. It was perfect. So many assumed that destruction was the only aspect to the Sith and their power. Like they were some dark reflection of the Jedi and their preservation. But that wasn't true, and this place was the proof.

 

The Sith weren't a dark reflection of the Jedi. They weren't their shadow, or their enemy, or even their equal. The Sith were the Jedi made complete. Destruction. Creation. Evolution. Truth. The Sith, and the Dark Side, were all things. The Jedi were just the fools who couldn't bring themselves to admit it. And this planet...this planet would be the anvil the Sith were forged anew on.

 

She sat down, cross-legged on the warm, dusty stone. Her eyes stayed closed, and her head sank forward. Around her, the ground began to quiver. Then it broke. In huge, jagged pieces, each the size of a combat walker, the rocks lifted away from the planet's surface, and slowly began to set themselves in a line before Calypso. Slowly, a crude wall of massive, black stones began to form in front of her, while the dead army and the reborn planet watched in silence.

 

It was a start. The full temple complex would of course be much, much larger than this single structure she was building.

 

But it was a start.

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  • 1 month later...

1 day later:

 

With a faint grind, the last block settled into place.

 

Calypso opened her eyes. Around her, the volcanic landscape had been transformed white by snow. She didn't know when the snow had started, or when the chill had replaced the heat of the planet's molten rebirth, but now fat, wet flakes drifted down to settle on the flat landscape, and blanketed her construction.

 

Before her was a pyramid. A simple, solid structure, it was composed of the great, rough hewn cubes of rock she'd pulled from the earth and set into place with her power, like the creation a child might make with toy blocks. Each black stone cube bore a thick coat of snow at its top, but the snow didnt hide the structure's immensity. It towered over her, blotting out the glare of the rising sun.

 

She felt hollowed out, scraped clean. Even she had limits, and the focus, precision, and grueling nature of the construction had taxed her mind and willpower to their ragged edges. It wasn't simply the power to tear the blocks free and set them into place. It was the control the exercise demanded, the sheer will necessary to restrain that same strength. You had to make each block identical to its mates, or risk the entire building tilting, sagging, and collapsing. Each had to be set precisely into place, or risk forcing yourself to undo your work to make adjustments when the error was discovered later. It was a trial that proved the difference between wielding power, and mastering it.

 

In a way though, Calypso was pleased at her exhaustion. To find her limits was to find her center. She never knew herself more thoroughly then when she was at the edge, looking back. Stranded as she was in this new era, she needed that surity. 

 

"Now...for the hard part."

 

She approached her crude pyramid. Her body ached at the motions, muscles complaining as they stretched for the first time since she'd begun. Her legs and arms were leaden from lack of sleep. Her stomach gnawed at her, empty since yesterday.

 

Her stomach was the easiest to ignore. Hunger was nothing, when you were familiar with starvation.

 

Each stone block was approximately 25 feet tall to a side. The first level of the pyramid towered over her. But while the blocks were as precise as she could make them, they were not smooth. Each side was pocked, coarse, and threaded with crevices where it had broken away from the surrounding stone. She reached up and swept her hands across the rough surface until she found a protrusion just wide enough to firmly grip.

 

Then she began to climb.

 

__________________________

 

Hours passed. Her already tired body protested every motion, every exhausting pull to raise her body another foot. With agonizing slowness, she conquered the first level of the pyramid, hoisting herself up onto the snow covered ledge that marked the boundary between the first and second layers. She didnt slow, but began the next leg of the climb. This was slower still, as both her exhaustion and her near numb, wet fingers struggled to cling to the rough exterior of the pyramid. She fell partway up, her fingers slipping from a shallow crevice and letting gravity have its say. Back at the ledge, she lay, her wind knocked out of her, her back awash in pain. The pain flowed through her, matching her burst of frustration, and some of her power reinvigorated itself.

 

Temptation slithered through the back of her mind.

 

Use your power.

 

She denied it. She did not stop the pain or tamp down her frustration, but neither did she let it invigorate her. She knew that if she chose, she could use the Force to leap up the side of the pyramid, skipping from level to level, and be at the summit in moments. But getting to the top wasn't the point, not on its own. 

 

Unconciousness took her for a while then, though she didn't know how long. When she woke, recovered if not revitalized, she tore the ragged remains of the hem of her dress into rags, wrapped them around her hands, and began the climb again.

 

The sun set again by the time she reached the fourth level.

 

She'd collapsed from exhaustion twice more by the time she reached the eighth.

 

Unconsciousness hovered at the edge of every thought, threatening to swallow her. Cold ate at her, whatever supernatural endurance Force users subconsciously drew on barely keeping her from freezing in the chill wind that rose and swelled sometime around the fifth level. Hunger itself had passed from pangs to gnawing, and from gnawing to all consuming. She'd allowed herself a brief smile at the return of her old friend.

 

But she kept climbing.

 

The blizzard came near the end. It swept down and smothered the pyramid in a white out. The wind tore and ripped at Calypso, each gust threatening to tear her from her precarious perch and send her plummeting to her death.

 

Death. It circled her now. She could feel it, like a blind man feeling the emptiness over the edge of a cliff.

 

It wanted her, wanted to take her, wanted to punish the arrogance of this puny creature that thought to stand against the turning of the galaxy. She was so small, so fragile, so insignificant. Even with all her power, she was nothing.

 

But she knew a lie when she heard it.

 

She was not just a human. She was not just a Force user.

 

She was a creature of the Dark Side of the Force, something infinitely greater than death. The Dark Side was truth. When all the pretenses, ideals, and lies of life were stripped away, the Dark Side remained. Passion. Strength. Power. Victory. That was Truth. And what was a little thing like death in the face of Truth?

 

She was the master and vessel of the Dark Side. Indeed, there had never been a difference between the two.

 

It surprised her when she crested the final level. In the howling wind of the blizzard, what should have been a magnificent view was hidden behind the rage of the planet venting itself through the storm.

 

Calypso collapsed into the snow-covered summit. Her breath came shallow, and darkness crept at the edges of her eyes, but one thing buoyed her and kept her awake.

 

She had won. She had victory.

 

She opened herself to the Dark Side. Her own strength was gone, but the Force was everywhere, and here on this world the Darkness swelled and boiled with fresh power.

 

It tore through her, eagerly answering her call and surrender to it. Her head jerked back, her face frozen in the silent rictus of a scream. A coldness deeper than the blizzard writhed through her, cutting and slicing as it looked for any imperfection, any flaw, any weakness.

 

It found none.

 

Like a channel ground smooth and scoured clean, the Dark Side found nothing to hinder its flow. Calypso's climb had broken her down and swept away everything but what she'd needed to survive. Right at that moment, she wasn't human. She wasn't even an animal. She was will, and she was strength.

 

The tide of power went deeper. It plunged into the depths of her soul, past the veneer of her conscious mind. And what it found there pleased it.

 

Hatred. At Calypso's core was a bottomless well of hatred. It had once had purpose and direction. The hatred of a girl suffering for no good reason, while others lived happy, content lives. The hatred of an orphan listening to the hypocrisy of the "charitable" who couldn't bring themselves to reach down and help her up. The hatred of a woman, strong from her ordeals, condemned by the weak, stupid, and ignorant. But now? The hate was everything. It had no form, no direction, no purpose. Only channels that it could flow through. A vision of the galaxy ablaze and crumbling flashed through Calypso's mind, and she smiled, joy and hatred intertwining in perverse union.

 

Her will bore down on the power flowing through her as it suckled and swelled at the bottomless pool of her hatred, and she twisted it into the shape she needed.

 

She raised her hand, and released her message to the universe.

Edited by Darth Calypso
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  • 1 month later...

Fiochmar felt and heard the call, not knowing how or why, just that he'd some how survived and been fully separated from his Master. He'd been searching for him and stretching out with the force hoping against hope to feel him or find his wayward Master. So far luck and the force has not been on the young Tsis's side, so hearing this call knowing he wasn't far he set a course for Ziost.

 

Upon arriving he disembarks and heads towards the source he felt the power come from, his eyes scanning for his Master. So far still no luck his eyes land upon Calypso and they go wide he bows his head deeply.

 

"Hello I'm Fiochmar apprentice to Darth Mavanger, I was Wondering m'Lady if you'd seen or heard from him? I haven't had contact with him since....The battle." Fioch whispers the last part as softly as he can.

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Calypso sat in a small, bare circle of stone. All around, snow drifted down as the blizzard spent the last of its strength. And yet, nothing touched her or the circle of stone, her invisible will repelling the tumbling flakes like a barrier. Despite the freezing temperatures, the Sith lady looked almost comfortable in her tattered and torn black rags. Her hands were a crosshatch of pink and red scrapes, her knees were scabbed a rusty brown, and her feet were bare to the elements after her shoes had fallen apart in her climb up the pyramid. Yet, she sat as poised and at ease as a diplomat in the Senate lobby.

 

The pyramid itself stood behind her, a titanic construction of rough stone blocks coated in a thick blanket of snow. Her tracks up the side had long been covered.

 

On 9/7/2022 at 3:36 PM, Atrid Torsen said:

"Hello I'm Fiochmar apprentice to Darth Mavanger, I was Wondering m'Lady if you'd seen or heard from him? I haven't had contact with him since....The battle." Fioch whispers the last part as softly as he can.

 

Calypso looked up, yellow eyes fixing on the young Tsis. She smiled, a predatory gleam flickering across her eyes. 

 

"I'm afraid you may have come to the wrong person. I'm a bit out of date.

 

But...you heard me. You are the first. You are certainly not the last. If you like, you are welcome to stay."

 

She gestured at the bare ground beside her.

 

"Or, if you prefer, you are welcome to learn." Her smile widened. "I hate to see potential stagnate."

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Fiochmar bows his head to Calypso further and thinks upon her words staring off into the distance as he straightens himself out. Hands resting upon his vibroblade and vibroaxe he looks back towards his ship where he left his R9 unit and than his gaze lands back upon Calypso as he moves closer to her. He takes a deep breath and reaches out with the force trying to see if he can sense his wayward Master he growls in frustration. He draws the axe and slams it into the snow covered ground taking a deep breath he puts the axe back and looks around again.

 

"I do not sense my Master, Mistress. But I do not wish to remain stagnant and in on place without moving or growing. May I pledge myself to you and your teachings?" Fiochmar asks moving closer to the Dark Lady bending knee before her with his head bowed.

 

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  • 2 weeks later...
On 9/17/2022 at 2:38 PM, Atrid Torsen said:

"I do not sense my Master, Mistress. But I do not wish to remain stagnant and in on place without moving or growing. May I pledge myself to you and your teachings?" Fiochmar asks moving closer to the Dark Lady bending knee before her with his head bowed.

 

 

Calypso was silent for a moment, then she stood.

 

"As you wish, Fiochmar." She turned, and started walking, not towards the pyramid or Fiochmar's ship, but out into the trackless wilderness. "Follow. There's something I need to show you."

 

As she began to move off, the wind hissing and whistling past the pair, she continued with a conversational tone. "We'll start with the key fundamentals then, evaluate, and work our way out from there. Strength is born from passion, this is the first lesson of any Sith. So tell me Fiochmar...what is your passion?" She turned to look at him. "What is it the source of your strength?"

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