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Aaris III

Tarrian Skywalker

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Solus nodded and began his trek downwards, utilizing the stairs and then a nearby ramp. The concept of Force Speed wasn’t entirely new to him. While he hadn’t put a name to it, he recalled how he did something similar when he was fighting Innmortos. When the necromancer was distracted with the lightsaber Solus had used, the Shard had unknowingly allowed the Force to flow not through his body, but rather through his crystal into the wires and framework of his body, giving his motors extra power. Force Jump sounded very similar, just utilized differently. 

The path solus took led him to a series of tunnel-like areas. A quick check revealed more sensors and cameras like before, but these sensors Solus could not trace where they were connected to. There were no blades in the walls at all, nor did the cameras seem to be linked to anything. Still, solus knew his master was expecting stealth, so he proceeded with caution. 

At least for the first few minutes. 

Down one of the halls, Solus spotted a Gungan, creeping through the darkness like a skilled hunter. Observing, Solus noted how this Gungan had survived for so long, and the blood on its spear was fresh. Either he had encountered the Ackley already, or had slain one of his fellow Gungans. 

As skilled as the Gungan was, he missed the fact there were cameras. Stepping into one of the camera's sights, a klaxon sound alarmed, deafening the halls. Solus and the Gungan flinched at the blare, and then fear filled them at the sounds of crashing behind solus. Solus turned and saw that behind him, the ceiling was crashing into the floor, cascading towards him.

"Oh…" Solus realized out loud.  "This is where force speed is needed" 

Solus broke into a mad dash as the crashing ceilings followed at a rapid pace. The gungan he passed by didn't even try to fight, but instead followed, seeing the immediate danger. However, it was obvious the gungan would never make it. 

Had Solus had more time, he would've stopped to enjoy the sound of the gungan getting flattened. But focus was the essence here, and pleasure had to come after.
The Impossible Geometries were harder to use this time. Most of it was because Solus was running and fearing his life. Sometimes instinct worked in his favor, but here it didn’t. But another part of it was that Solus was still riding his emotional high. Two Acklays under his belt had replaced his anger with a sense of pride.  In this vacuum of a situation, where it was only he and the monsters and the Gungans, envy was worthless. 

Solus felt empty.  And the crashing ceilings were getting closer, changing all of his emotions to panic. 

Solus’ thoughts scrambled around in terror. If he failed, would he die? If he didn’t die, what would become of him? Would his very shard become someone else’s weapon? Or would his master torture him again and again like before with the rest of the Si...

In the impossible Geometries, a cloud of red anger erupted. The anger thickened and goo-ified, clinging to the shapes that was Solus. In the Force, anyone nearby would have sensed the sudden power flowing around the Shard’s chassis. And for those who were not sensitive, they could see the result as suddenly the chassis surged with energy, overclocking its motors to a ridiculous degree. Before the last ceiling could crash down, Solus became more of an afterimage. Down the hall, around the corner, and even further, Solus surged forward non-stop. 


The memory of the abuse he had suffered under his Master in front of his peers was more than enough fuel and focus. And it only recalled the other memories of betrayal from his family before his ascension. The eternal darkness that was before. The isolation from all living things. All that pain for something that was not his fault. All that pain was rage and envy. And all that rage was energy in the Impossible Geometries

Solus’ next test came quickly. With the ceilings still falling behind him, before Solus was a massive, open chasm, and below, the Acklay waited. Having felt the  crashing tunnel, it knew prey was either approaching or dying. All it had to do was to wait. 

Still surging with energy, Solus charged forward, jumped slightly to land in a crouching position, and launched himself across the chasm onto an opposing wall. The Force continued to surge through him like a storm, and gave his leg motors the power needed to cross such a great distance, and continued to give him the power to launch again towards the Acklay at the bottom.

Solus came down like a meteor. In a strangely similar account to how he killed Innmortos on Naboo, Solus’ fist struck the monster’s forehead and completely splattered it into the floor. 

But this time, Solus didn’t stop after the killing blow. Instead, his rage continued to boil over. With a quick retrieve of his blade, Solus began to butcher the body over and over, slicing each and every body part he could see, and then some. The world turned red in Solus’ blood covered sensors. There was nothing but rage and anger and fury, wanting desperately t o lash out and destroy anything it could get its claws on. It was the rage of the Fanged God. Of death. 

Solus eventually stopped, collapsing onto the corpse he had mutilated, barely holding himself up. He had never called on the Force so much in such a little amount of time. His battery was drained and needed to recharge for a few moments. 

“Excuse me sirs, but we have arrived. Shall we prepare the landing shuttles?” A Linnorm announced to Akheron. Indeed, the ship had just broken out of hyperspace over the partially snow covered world of the necromancer’s minions.  Solus stood up from the corpse and looked up, sensing the sudden surge of life that had come into view of the ship. 

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When on the planet, Solus marveled at what he saw. The impossible Geometries were almost frozen here in places, unable to move at all. Much like Innmortos, it ranked with unholy sorcery. But unlike the necromancer, these beings who even now surrounded the Shard and his master showed no signs of power. Just pale and sluggish reflections of what was once a semblance of life. 

And yet, their manner of speaking, the words they chose, the way they walked…it all spoke reverence and worship. 

In the Impossible Geometries, the lines of Envy around Solus intensified. 

“I want this…” Solus muttered as he followed his master. It was loud enough to be heard, but soft enough to indicate the Shard wasn’t seeking a reply. Even on the dangerous climb upwards, his thoughts of envy continued to intensify. “All of this…an entire planet. I should get something like this eventually. In fact, I think I will. After all, if a pathetic husk of a being can rule a planet, why shouldn’t a servant of the Fanged God have a planet to destroy at his whim? After all, the Empress has her servants, and my master has the Linnorms. Someday, I will have a planet of my own.”

Solus had to pause and tilt his head at his own thoughts. “Course, it couldn’t be Ishvara. That place is already claimed by my father, so… perhaps there is a jewel in the galaxy not claimed yet, or some place where my kind already exist. People seem to think I’m a droid though…so perhaps a place like that…”

Eventually, the two made it to the throne room. If he could have, Solus would’ve smirked at the misery Innmortos was obviously in. He didn’t need to be  force sensitive to detect that the necromancer was something akin to miserable. 

Perhaps he could use this misery against the necromancer further. After all, Solus had killed a body of Innmortos. Why not the spirit as well?  And if he could take away this planet from the necromancer, well, that would be even better. 

Solus waited for his master to be done speaking. The words he spoke resonated with the Shard a bit. Eternity was something the Shard knew well. It was an eternity of nothingness before he ascended into the world of worlds. Still, a part of his master words did the opposite with Solus. At least here, eternity would be entertaining. There was always something going on. They were in the middle of a war after all, and the Force was very enlightening of how the universe worked. Maybe it was the type of eternity that lost its appeal. 

“If you don’t like their hatred…” Solus began, his intent on hoping to break the necromancer a bit mentally while simultaneously siding with his master’s words. “you could always get rid of them and start again. Like my master has said, answer their challenge and kill them. All of them. Make both the loyal and the disloyal see the stupidity of hating you. After all, what’s a planet of insufferable lizards compared to the eternity you have now to find something better?” 

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“Thats Dragon or Solus now to you, necromancer…” Solus replied at the first call of Saber Stone. The added insult of being young also seemed to sting slightly. “And sometimes simple answers are better then convoluted ones you…” 

Solus stopped himself. No use letting his anger out at this moment. Still, over time the necromancer seemed to try to goad Solus further and further. Whether it was by showing off all of his treasures, or saying his death at the Shard’s hands was intentional. The necromancer seemed to be open for a battle of words with Solus. 
At least, that was how the Shard interpreted them. 

“Huh… With all this power and wealth, Innmortos…” Solus started, once the crypt had been revealed. It was good that Innmortos warned against touching anything, for Solus’ skeletal hand had begun to wander to the sarcophagi. “...I would have figured you would have enough to get a body that doesn’t hobble with weakness.” 

Still, Solus’ words only hid the fact that he was incredibly jealous of all the wealth and power the necromancer had. Shouldn’t he, Solus the Dragon, have more then a withered old thing? Thankfully, his master’s words came to his head briefly. Warnings about how controlling a planet being harder than Solus knew. This at least held Solus back a bit from attempting to be more vicious with his words. 

However, that restraint quickly began to evaporate when the necromancer held the metal chassis back from the pool. 

“Are you dumb as well? I have no blood to boil. Or are you just wanting me weak so you can put me in your blade, like I did with your brain and blood back on Naboo” At this, Solus held up his newly crafted lightsaber. Perhaps the necromancer would sense that a piece of his old body was used in the blade’s crafting. 


Without turning his head from the necromancer, Solus listened to his master  ask his questions. Solus grumbled. 

“Master, do we really need this? His servants tell us to seek forgiveness, he denies the Fanged God what is due by raising the dead, and now he expects you to disrobe like…like some common ship’s hand! I will obey you my Lord, but a being like this is not worthy of respect nor trust.”

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Solus listened to the two speak and nodded. The necromancer’s words about the Father of Dust and the Fanged Beast resonated true with the shard. In what little spare time the Shard had, he had studied some of the aspects of the Fanged God. That was part of the reason why he was so proud of his newest title. 

“Very well my master. I will obey” 

At first, Solus didn’t move, as he only observed his master disrobe and prepare for the pool of blood. But eventually, he knew what he needed to do. 

“This better be no trick necromancer” Solus told Innmortos, and got into a kneeling position before the pool, lightsaber held at rest in hands. His motors seemed to be working in overtime, trying to combat the frigid coolness that had overtaken the chamber. The hiss of steam from boiling oil was obvious, like breaths in the snow. 
 The motors eventually died down however, as the entire chassis shut itself off. The final act of it before turning off its power was the opening of its face plates, revealing the small crystalline being inside.  The dancing lines inside the Shard mades its orange glow almost eerie. The wires connecting it to the rest of the body disconnected themselves, allowing the thing to be at rest. 

Slowly, but surely, the crystal began to shake. It wasn’t a violent shaking. It wasn’t even a sudden shaking, but more of a gentle wobbling around, as if a child with fat fingers struggling to grab a coin from the ground. But as it struggled to move, the shard’s glow began to dim and darken while the lines of thought inside began to touch each other and spin brighter and brighter. Soon, they were spinning a circle around the center, a ring of shining light, while the rest of the crystal turned a sickened black. To those who could sense the Force, it was obvious that Solus was tapping into it. 

The shard lifted and drifted out of the dead chassis like a jellyfish on an ocean current. As Akheron disappeared into the pool, Solus followed. Bobbing through the air, the crystal floated closer and over the pool of blood until suddenly, without warning, the shard fell and plopped into the pool of blood, sinking into its depths.   

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For a moment, the Shard simply sat on the ground of the now empty pool. Even as the others moved, the shard remained motionless. Its lights continued to spin around brighter and brighter, its insides an ebon black. But something was tinting the darkness within. Something else. A shade of red had made its way in. Through cracks unperceivable to the naked eye, the power and the souls of the dead had gotten in and touched the lines of thought. 

Then it began to shake and make noise. Somewhere between chittering, clicking, purring, and hissing, the noise started low, but continued to raise in volume slightly. While at first most species outside of some canines and arachnids would be able to hear what the crystal was sounding, it became clearer as it increased in amplitude.
The color inside the crystal was no longer black nor red, but a mixture of the two, swirling like a cursed liquid. If one took a microscope to it, they would have seen images. Some familiar, while most not, the images of faraway places, lives and their livelihoods, timeless places and places stuck in time, and much more flashed over and over in no discernable pattern. Images from the past lives that had been used in the making of the pool of blood.

And still the crystal made its noise. Louder and louder, the noise grew, now the volume of a slight moan. 

Gas began to emit from the Shard. Choking and putrid, thick red mists poured out from the unperceivable cracks the liquid had found its way in. The gas itself hissed as it escaped. But instead of dissipating into the air, it swirled and circled the small shard. A cloud of red.

And still the crystal made its noise.  Louder and louder, the noise grew, now the volume of a snake’s hiss. 

The lines inside jumped about the images, as if they were trying to swallow the images as quickly as they appeared. Despite moving as fast as light would allow them to move, the lines could not keep up. The images were too fast and too much, and each line could only grasp on each one briefly. Clinging onto it was a pointless endeavor. 

And still the crystal made its noise.  Louder and louder, the noise grew, now the volume of a hound’s growl.

Then the images inside the crystal stopped and froze. A space station, floating in an endless sea of darkness. Behind it, predatory eyes glanced at the darting lines around it hungrily and wildly. The lines in turn, spun around the image of the station and the eyes, as if they were communicating with it.  The eyes would glow, the lines would intensify, and the eyes would glow again. Until the lines suddenly stopped, frozen in place. 

The noise stopped, as if taking a breath. Then it shrieked and violently shook as the lines came to a standstill. 

The gas that had swirled about the crystal thickened even more, glowing with intensifying heat.  From the mists, numerous, thin tiny legs began to form, and, shakily, lifted the shard up and began to skitter across the ground towards the chassis. The stone didn’t seem to follow the legs perfectly however. It was as if the legs were just a bit ahead of it, and the Shard was simply levitating along with it trying to keep up. As if the legs were just an illusion to sell the fact that the shard was moving of its own accord, screeching the whole way.

Up the chassis the stone climbed, leaking mist behind it. Finally, it reached the Chassis’ head and nestled itself in, its screeching muffled by the plates and gears. The wires inside reattached themselves of their own accord, the faceplate closed over the Shard, and the chassis came to life. 

“!emag elttil dam ruo yalp, stel ho, stel, edam laed a kcurts laed a! krow ot teg stel ahahaha!”  The chassis’ voicebox crackled, with bursts of static bleeding through occasionally. It twisted its head about widely, as if taking in everything. With each twist and violent shake, its head leaked out a bit more red mist, as if neither the chassis nor the Shard inside could contain it. 

Whether it was because it understood Innmortos or not was unclear. Rather it simply holstered its lightsaber and moved towards the nearest entrance. In the throes of pure madness, Solus was controlling and being controlled by something else entirely. A mixture between sanity, madness, and something else entirely, the chassis moved like a first generational  protocol droid rather then a sophisticated machine, jerking and flinching randomly.

“!ytnelp a si ereh tnemyap dna tnemyap seriuqer nossel hcaE !meht morf ti ekat ew os ,evah yeht tahw evresed ton od yehT!" 

The first being that Solus met demonstrated what was about to happen to anyone else. Grabbing the first lizard thing that had rushed to investigate what its god-king had done, Solus lifted it by its neck into the air. The Shard’s left bony hand released and began to extend its scomp link directly into the lizard’s left eye, and began to spin wildly, as if accessing a common data port. 

“!ahahaha lluf ni tnemyap !sey sey sey!” The chassis cackled as blood continued to spurt out from the now dead lizard. Even so, the mist that leaked from the chassis’ head began to solidify briefly, forming images similar to a bleeding hologram.  At first, it was an image of what looked like the face of the  lizard that had just died. Then it morphed into several other faces and even some buildings before it dissipated into a mist once again. 

“on on on on taht evresed t'nseod eh !ma i suoivne woh  !nam ylimaf a!” Solus cackled, dropping the body. “!retaerg gnihtemos uoy ot laever lliw i dna gniht elttil erom em evig!” 


With this mad cackling to itself, Solus’ chassis continued to move. It would find the nearest exit, and like Innmortos had commanded, it would attempt to kill the world.  

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The chassis of Solus seemed to nod as it heard Innmortos words, but it was hard to tell. Between its random flinchings and jerking around, anything it did was impossible to tell from intent and chaotic. It was like a puppet having its strings rearranged randomly, or a youth learning to drive a vehicle for the very first time. 
But when it got outside,  it’s tune changed completely. Finding an exit to the temple, Solus had begun to leap downwards, landing on a few ledges, but only stopping for a moment before jumping again and again, spinning and twirling on the way down like some Corescanti dancer.
"!ahaha eerf eb ot nuf hcus !nuf hcus ,ahaha!" It belted as it flew downwards. The static in its voice box was louder now, as if whatever that was causing it was more in control. 

When the chassis landed, it got to work right away. The linnorms were elsewhere now, but the populace of the planet had gathered around, both undead and the living. The explosion that had occurred at the temple had drawn much attention, and this strange metal thing that had descended only increased their curiosity.
"!stfig gnirb i!" Solus started. With a flick of the wrist, the lightsaber flew from his belt into hand, activating on touch. "!lla fo tfig tseteews eht !htaed gnirb i!"

The lizards looked confused at the metal beings words, and startled at the weapon. What language did this thing speak? Was this thing sent by their god-king?

They didn't have long to decipher the words. Solus got to work, charging in a curving line like a drunken fool. The blade swung around wildly, no care given to who or what it might have struck. Those that got caught by the swings were quickly ignored as solus continued after those who were still living. Some stayed and tried to fight. Most of them were the undead. Others fled for their lives. Most of the latter were the living. 

"?leef I taht siht si tahw" Solus pondered aloud as he continued to slash about widly. "!ohohohow !era uoy revetahw em ekat !ohoho ti tnaw I si siht revetahW !siht tnaw I !lortnoc tnaw I od ron em lortnoc t'nac I !rettam on rettam on !ahahahawb ?thgil nevig ssenkrad eht siht sI ?ssenkaew dna rewop siht sI"

It took some time before the squad of lizards began to either fall back or be so dissected that the parts were no longer putting themselves back together.


However, Solus didn’t seem to mind at all. With no muscles to show exhaustion, and with his Shard fueling his batteries with energy coming from seemingly nowhere, Solus continued on and on, slashing, dancing, and bobbling his way towards a wooden longhouse. 

”!ti dnamed I !tuo emoc tuo emoc“ Solus chanted, slamming a fist on the doors a few times. Inside the startled voices shrieked once.  ”!ni em teL .sdrazil elttil stfig doog gnirb I ?stfig ym tnaw ton uoy od“

At this last phrase, the force exploded, with the door shattering into the longhall. Surprisingly, only one lizard stood inside, clutching a makeshift weapon: a broken chair leg. Beyond him, the only things in the long haul was furniture, a burning fireplace, and several overturned meals. 
Solus strode in, joints still jerking. While his sensors were looking in all directions, he kept his 'face' stayed pointed towards the lone lizard. Dressed in ceremonial robes, solus deduced this person to either be a spokesperson or a priest of some kind. 

"drazil elttil olleH" solus spoke, striding around the hall as if he owned the place. Turning over furniture, kicking fallen plates of meat, solus made a demonstration of his intent. "?meht gnirb I tfig eht meht yned t'now uoy yleruS ?srehto eht era erehW"

The lizard looked confused but frightened. What was this monster? What was this thing that spoke so unnaturally and had skin of the reforged ground? When solus drew closer, it made a desperate swing.
The lizards face became more horrified when solus caught the club with one hand easily and tossed it aside. 

"?yeht era erehw oS .rehtie t'now uoy oS .t'nod I ?ylimaf evah uoY .yvne I .evah uoy tahw tnaw I tuB .thgif uoY .dooG !ahaH"
Solus grabbed the lizard and slammed it into a wall, shaking it violently. 

"?yeht era erehW" He continued to demand.  

The lizard refused to answer, either because of pure defiance or pure confusion. Solus sighed and holstered his blade again. 

"drazil elttil diputs uoy gnitseuqer t'nsaw I" solus commented. The lizard squirmed and began to hiss and scream as solus slowly drove his scoop link into its eye socket. No need to kill it right away. It's death would come soon.  

Slowly, the mist swirled about the chassis head again, solidifying and showing outlines of images. Scenes from a life. This lizard's life. It's parents. Where it found its mate. When it had lost a sibling. Its first clutch of eggs. 

Solus growled at these images and drove the scomp deeper. The metal device whirled and spun like it was seeking some obscure data. 

The images changed. More recent days. The first time the chief saw its god-king. Seeing its brothers come back from the grave. Hiding its children in the longhall. A trap door opening and closing. A turning away as pounding were sounding at the door. 

Solus released and pulled out. Before the body even hit the ground, solus had overturned the nearest table. There, a small indent in the wood with scratch marks from use.

The younglings that Solus revealed squirmed and shook with startelement and fear. Solus instead laughed and raised an open hand. One of the younglings squeaked as she was lifted up without being touched. She was most certainly a child, no more then a few years old. Solus tossed her over his shoulder, her clawed hands beating his back harmlessly. 
".uoy gnola emoC" Solus chuckled, shutting the trapdoor afterwards. With a pull of the force, solus crushed some of the furniture on top, trapping the younglings underneath. With another pull, a burning log was pulled from the fireplace, setting some of the wood ablaze. 

"!yad ylevol a tahW .yad a tahw hO .ssentiw a sdeen gnik ruoY 

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”?dlihc elttil eerga uoy t’nod ?sey yad ylevol a tahw !yad a tahw ho!“ Solus spoke as he moved, the scenery becoming a blur as he moved faster and faster. All around, the effects of what was happening at the temple were becoming clear. People were either gathering to see, or fleeing to hide. 

Either way, the blade that Solus carried in his free hand slashed them as he ran past. 

The child said nothing. Most of that was cause she was slipping into and out of consciousness and partially because Solus’ words were completely incoherent to the untrained ear. He was a metal monstrosity to these primitives, carrying a blade of fire. 

“?ereh ew evah tahw kca .dluohs eh ho ?sey ,siht eroda tsum dog degnaf eht .ees ot meht rof egami doog a tahw ahah“

Solus had to stop. A gathering of necromancers blocked his way. Hooded and bearing all manners of decorated staves and clubs, the lizards held their weapons at the ready. One of them, their leader judging by his more decorated robe and extravagant bone necklaces, raised his staff at the Shard and commanded something. Most likely a command to drop the child.

Solus looked the child over and shook his head.”esle enoemos yb nevig ton sredro evah ot .suolaej ma i woh ho ?sey retsam ruoy si raef ruoy .straeh ruoy morf emoc sredro ruoy ,esruoc .sruoy evah uoy kniht uoy sa tsuj ,sredro ym evah i on on on“ 

The necromancers didn’t stop to try to translate. The leader pointed a bony finger and uttered a chant. The others followed suit. The winds around Solus picked up. A flash of yellow in the Shard signaled Solus what was about to happen. Ducking and jumping to the side, a blast of Force energy knocked aside some trees. 

Solus charged, lightsaber in hand. However, this time he was not ready for what came next. The leader raised his hand and chanted something profane. Solus suddenly tripped forward, dropping the child in the process. From the ground, several bony hands had reached out and grabbed the Shard’s leg. 

”!sey sey sey euqinhcet taht worrob ot evah lliw I !revelc yrev !ohoho“ Solus slashed the bones and pulled his leg out and charged again, now freed from the weight of the child. Surprised by the Shard’s quick recovery, the necromancer’s were not prepared to deal with the fiery blade Solus carried. 

Soon, the bodies lay scatterred. The child had crawled a short distance away, but it wasn’t difficult to get her again. 

“ …won won“ Solus started. ”…yaw rehtie .od ot stnaw gnik ruoy revetahw ro ezeerf ro .nrub tenalp eht hctaw ot uoy ecrof dna pu uoy eit ot gniog m’I .uoy llik t’now I .em morf raef ot gnihton evah uoy“


The hike up to the temple was longer then before. Solus found himself stopping more and more to simply make sure the child didn’t slip. All the while, Solus talked to himself, mentioning how free his soul was at the moment. The sith code, to him, was about losing all the chains that restricted you, so what could be more freeing than losing your sanity and moral code? But even the child could notice there was something off about the Shard. The words he spoke were both his own and not his own. Whatever that had possessed the small rock in the temple was not purely beneficial. Perhaps, in time, it too would take its toll on the shard, unless trained properly?


Once at the top, Solus tied the child to the highest point he could find and looked around. The view was magnificent and stretched for miles. Whatever show Innmortos had planned, the youngling would be unable to avoid witnessing it. 

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As everything in sight became frozen by the dark powers conjured by Innmortos, Solus clapped his hands together like a child. 

”!recnamorcen flesruoy enodtuo evah uoy ho“Solus exclaimed loudly, clapping faster and faster, his hands benging together loudly as two metal hands would. ”!ahahah erom dna erom dna erom llik !erom !erom“

Above him, the child screamed. Solus stopped himself and looked at her. A stone pillar, standing high and above the rest of the mountain, provided a perfect viewpoint for the destruction that was occurring below. But something called Solus to her. Gingerly, he walked to the base of the pillar and called up. 


”?thgir ,siht fo thgis esol ot gniog ton era uoy ?ereht pu ko uoy era“

The girl didn’t reply. Solus screached his head plates, as if he was one of the organics doing their methods of showing confusion. Then he snapped his fingers and began to speak again. This time, it was much slower, and plain enough to understand again. 

“Sl’isss’, is that right?” Solus asked. The memories of the previous lizards he had killed flowed to bring the name to the forefront. 
The child stopped screaming, hearing its name. 

“Well Sl’isss, the way I see it, we are keeping you alive so you can report everything…everything here!” Solus turned and gestured to the freezing landscape. Ships had also begun to land, with Linnorms pouring out.

“All this death! All this beautiful death! It is just beautiful! And you get to share it with the galaxy!”

Solus turned back to the child and gestured to her again. 

“The entire galaxy! You know what that is, don’t you? Worlds beyond worlds beyond worlds? And you will spread our word to them! Word of destruction haha!” 
Solus again turned back to the freezing view and held out his arms, laughing wildly, madness completely taking him. 

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Solus continued to cackle madly on the peak of the tower, much to the youngling’s fright. At some point during his raving laughter, his tone took a unique shift. It wasn’t as solid as before. Its warbling and distorting was still there but a new emotion seemed to be sinking in with it. The shard’s movements even were a little different now. His hands went to his ‘head’ and rubbed against metal facial plates, like a child covering his eyes. 

“Hahaha, what is that? I hear them, don’t you? Do you hear them coming closer? Is it them? Or is it something else? Does the power of death on the planet wade? Or does it strengthen? Is the wound opening or closing? Opening or closing? I feel it, but i hear and see it too! The shapes, they move and squirm. The shapes spin and the shapes belch. The geometries...oh the geometries! Oh my oh my oh my…

Solus stopped at the apparition of the necromancer. While straightened out, his body still twitched randomly, the joints occasionally having a life all their own. 
The Shard snatched the key away from the necromancer and gave a deep bow, head nearly touching the floor. 

With pleasure, oh so great pleasure ahaha! I have not inflicted enough death to sate my taste, let alone the taste of the Fanged One himself! Let us open the wound, yes? Yes yes yes, open the wound and make a new place dedicated to his hunger. Ah I love this day! What a lovely day!” 

 "It shall be done, I shall assist. Let us see what the blood of Wrath and Rage may add to the mix and awaken the Destroyers Of Worlds. The Leviathans. Sithspawn born of us all, one that will bring this planet to it's last knee and consume it for eternity."

Solus laughed once, as if something his master said amused him, then quickly led the way. At first, it was just simple walking, but soon it changed into a run, and then, bizarrely, a dash on all fours, like some kind of animal. Each set of stairs was almost skipped as he jumped down, leaping from wall to wall downwards, the force trailing off him. All the while, the mist emitting from his head swirled and cloyed thicker and stronger. 

“I can see so much right now…” Solus spoke as he moved. “The shapes…the impossible geometries. Its like back at Naboo, but gathering. Did you see them there master? I did. Like Mitochondria. Dark Mitochondria. What a lovely word, yes? Mitochondria… what is that even? I don’t know what that is, and yet I know that word? Like something beyond feeds that to me? The shapes, they whisper it to me...” 

Solus had found the lab. Vials, books, papers, cauldrons, tubes, and all manner of equipment were laying in cluttered messes on tables, shelves, and floors. While unshattered, the lab was certainly disrupted. 

“Oh something crawls in here master. Something dark.” Solus continued, undeterred by the mess. Swiping all manner of potions and poisons, he placed them gingerly on a cleared off table. Occasionally he would find a book or a page of some unknown content, and after a moment of peering through the tomb, would toss it aside, screeching slightly. Whatever secrets the necromancer had here, Solus already fragile mind refused to dive further into. 

“Something crawls deep and wriggles. Both here…and here…” Solus pointed at the tombs, and then at his own head where the Shard’s crystalline form continued to scream. “It controls and relents. It feeds and devours. Is it the Fangs or is it something else? Do I fear it, or does it fear me? I believe neither, but do i believe both? No, that makes no sense, yet no sense is the only sense I can understand. From void i came, and to the void I go. And yet, in the void i hear it call, and from the void it flies. No no no, not flies, but wriggles and squirms, yes heh heh heh, squirms and squelches…”    

As Solus talked and gathered, the mist swirled so strongly that new shapes began to take form. Legs, pincers, mandibles and wings; a shape, small but disturbing, was taking form. Still gaseous, its form was not fully clear or even comprehensible, but flickers of it could be witnessed behind the Shard’s head, with tendrils gripping the shoulders tightly. 

At his master’s command, Solus nodded and opened the vials and mixed them together. When it came to the blood, Solus spoke again. 

“You give anger. I give envy. I envy all things right now. Even you master. You live long lives in the world of worlds. I live a long life in a black void. And blood. I hear something that screams for something different. The shapes that squirm, they belch at that substance. They say offer something…ah, but how can i offer that? How oh how….oh that is how…”

As Solus talked, the thing that formed in the air dived towards the mixture. Following the mist, images of memories from the lizards’ Solus had drained, formed, motionless in the air. Soundlessly, the mist pooled over the liquid until it too merged with the crimson fluid.

“Your blood and your rage, my memories and my envy, and our hatred. Your blood will give muscle, your rage will give power. My memories will give… clarity? No they say something else. The shapes squelch… targets. My memories will give it targets, and my envy will give it hatred. We do not seek our own deaths…not yet, no? My memories, the memories of Klllss the leader and Grr’a’sk the guard, they will be the scent of targets to find, and my envy of them will make them kill those targets…yes yes yes… hahaha!” 

Solus picked up the mixture carefully, not wanting to spill a drop. “Come my master, the waters await us! Kill the beings on the beaches, and you will call it forth with the smell of death! I will offer the mixture, and give it what we have made here, and it will kill as we see fit! And then, the Fanged God will have its due! Yes yes yes!” 

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Solus beheld the might of the beast as it rose in size, towering more and more.  With a shiver, he spoke.


“Behold…our heart of this world!” Solus gestured, holding his hands out. The beast moved like a titan of its mass should: with un care for anything beneath it, and with hunger for life. 


“Progenitor and Ender of life. The Dark Mother’s child! The Fanged God's messenger. Alpha and Omega... beginning and end. Once Creator... now Destroyer.” 


The mist from Solus head swirled to full cloud of thickness, riding forward and following the monster of the depths. The death of so many creatures, and the summoning of such an ancient and beastial monster had done its duty. The wound was opening. The Dark side was flowing with less and less restraint. Death had come to Aaris III, and Solus could not resist but to begin speaking scriptures of unknown tongue. 


Before, his master and Innmortos had witnessed Solus speaking in a simple manner of possession. On Naboo, Innmortos had heard Solus speak several words in something unknown to the mortal depths of knowledge. Now here, with the wound opening and Solus feeling the center of it, caught in the ravages of some madness, the language of his true stone spoke out. It wasn’t one of sound, with phonetic syllabus that humans could reproduce with tongue. Nor was it one that could be written down. Neither sane sage or rambling madmen could reproduce what Solus spoke. Those in the Force perhaps could sense and even understand it, but descriptions of it were beyond anyone’s capability


But there was a language coming from the Shard, who’s arms still were raised high in praise of the monster that had been summoned. A nearby Linnorm could feel the language press on his own brain, and later, when he reported it to both the Master of Hides and Stitch-Mouth back on the ships, explained how it was both something he had felt in his own heart and soul, completely in his mind, but foreign to it. Deadly, but alluring. Fascinating, but maddening in its own right.  The Linnorm, on the trip back to Faleen, would end his own life, unable to tolerate the nightmares that the Shard had introduced.


It was at this height of madness when Solus found himself released from whatever that had possessed him. Having fulfilled its unspoken promise, it left Solus through the mist, and followed the monster, eager to open the Force Wound that had begun on the planet. Once death had been accomplished fully, and every life on the planet was consumed, the thing that had possessed Solus would return to its home amongst the Outer Spheres. But it left what it needed to leave in the Shard. Knowledge on new powers, and visions of where to learn more of them. 


Solus turned and stumbled after Akheron. Weak from the power that had left him, he still bore enough energy to get to one of the nearest ships. 


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  • 10 months later...

Solus stepped off the ship with a sign from his vocoder. Though he held no nerve tissues to feel the air of Aaris III, his abilities in the Force gave him all the senses he needed to feel the planet’s unique aura. It reeked of death and blood. The cataclysm that had been known as Innmortos’ baptism of blood still hung in the air like a miasma. The shapes in the Impossible Geometries still spun more sluggishly here, and congealed and separated more slowly then that of Naboo. 


Upon reflection however, Solus realized there was also a tint to the Impossible Geometries. That substance that he identified as the Madness still lingered here, ever so subtly. With focus and determination, Solus believed he could follow it back to its source, the beast that his master and he had helped create. Chaos above, Solus wondered what the Temple thought of this place, being the birthplace of where Solus first touched the Madness of the Kathol Rift.


"Darth Akheron, does this mighty order have a Code of some sort, one that I should memorize?"


Solus was shaken from his focus at the new apprentice words, and without thinking, he interjected @Bernon Mrrgwharr


“Allow me to help with that, fellow conduit. The code of the Sith is as ancient as it is enlightening. 


Through passion, I gain strength. Through strength, I gain power. Through power, I gain victory. Through victory, my chains are broken. The Force shall free me.”


Solus paused for a moment and added, “Of course, what that will mean to you will be different from other Sith, as I have been told. I have interpreted it as to be unrestricted in both passion and imagination. Through unrestricted passion, I am discovering unrestricted power. Through unrestricted imagination, I have discovered unrestricted insight. But I wonder if that is what Innmortos believes.”


Solus looked to Akheron for approval of his words. While he still held a slight grudge towards his master at the moment, he did realize that his teachings still held merit for the Shard and thus, this new apprentice. 


“Of course, blind one, I am curious on your interpretation of the Sith Code” Solus aimed towards @Lord Ōk Rägnär. “Tell us, what insights have you been granted into the ways of the Dark?”

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"The Code of the Sith is meaningless on it's own...It's meant to guide you to a singular truth and the freedom it brings: follow your own. Let your passions be your guide. But it doesn't guide one into the Darkness....No. The Darkness is something you find on your own."


Solus’ voice box chuckled loudly at the being’s words. 


“How amusing it is to hear your words of wisdom! But I must disagree with a concept of yours, for you sell the Dark Side short. In my experience, the Darkness will find you, one way or another. All hear its call, but some more than others, like us. However, we have made the choice to listen to its words and embrace its core essences. That is a concept of the Temple of the Spider, and one I now believe in. But don’t worry blind one, their teachings are secret to most.” 


Having said this and left to his own devices, Solus continued to follow the group. However, a moment of inspiration was beginning to strike him. The Madness gurgled at the edges of his sanity, speaking disgusting words. The Force around him momentarily trembled. The Dark Side resonated with him as well the planet’s own essence.

Unable to resist, Solus pulled the modified  Valachord and began to play its strings. 


“On lost planet of Aaris III
An empty grave we’ve come to see
That poor soul has made its way…


With mists most thick with souls aflame
We soon begin to call his name
Hurry, hurry, we can’t delay!


Innmortos, Innmortos, arise, arise
We still await your final demise!”


Solus chuckled to himself as he continued playing his song that simultaneously praised the necromancer’s abilities while mocking them. He recognized that the necromancer had power. There was no argument about that. But as a Sith and a rival, Solus would never pass up an opportunity to put the undead thing in its inevitable place: beneath him. 

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  • 2 weeks later...

When the lighting struck and outright killed the Linnorm, Solus stopped his playing, recognizing the situation he was in. 


“Perhaps music can wait for another time…” Solus commented as he put his Valachord onto his back. While his chassis helped prevent any nervous shaking, he had to admit that there was a quiver of fear in the Force. Not a great one that would be noticeable, but enough of one to get the Shard to silence for a moment.


 He glanced at @Bernon Mrrgwharr, and in his slightly frayed nerves, made a joke. “Perhaps your master did not approve of that one, and will use you as his next vessel? Heh, I doubt that however. No doubt he is just wanting to show off his powers and to get us to pay him some more respect. Of course, I hold nothing but respect for the necromancer. Control over the dead is no doubt a difficult skill.”


 As the group continued, Solus seemed to excel in the current conditions. The heavy winds struggled to knock over his heavier, denser body of metal and wires, and when the gusts did become strong enough to actually force him to react, he did so quickly, the benefit of having a smaller body. However, the flashes of lightning made Solus keep an eye on the sky. Only recently did he hear the idea of ‘ionization’ weapons, and he had no desire to come close to such a thing. In his mind, lightning and ion weapons were closely related. 


However, as more progress was made, Solus began to slow down. The dropping temperature began to play on his more delicate systems, something he began to note out loud. 


“Remind me in the future to upgrade my lubricant processors. And to perhaps replace my core battery unit. Something with a bit more charge.This thing does have its advantages though. I am surprised that you beings can do so well without metal boots, hehe. 


 These chills are making my discharge rate go beyond  comfort though. You organics have it slightly easier. Yes, easier, with your insulated bodies and warm liquid blood. Oh how I envy you, you lucky, lucky beings. You don’t know what it is like, no you don’t. To be trapped in the confines of helplessness. To exist in this world of worlds for so long, and to not know the horrors I have seen.  No, you beings are way too lucky for your own good, yes yes yes.. ”


As Solus trailed off in his envy, any Force User would notice something about the Shard. Instead of slowing down, he began to move faster and quicker. There were even moments when the Shard seemed to take 20 steps in the time he should’ve only taken two. The Dark Side began to swirl around the Shard and move into his wires and joints, speeding up the energy and momentum. Whether Solus was accessing Force Speed consciously  or not was debatable, but it seemed his envy was aiding where his chassis was failing in the bitter temperatures.  


When the group made to the throne room, Solus quieted himself, but his envy continued to swirl around and through him, its energy flowing through him still, keeping him warmer than his central battery could. 

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Solus was deeply impressed with Innmortos’ ability to come back from the dead. The new vessel he had chosen was terrifying in its own right, not to mention the waves of cold freezing the impossible geometries around it. The shapes didn’t just become sluggish; some even stopped altogether. 


For a moment, the lines of envy in Solus faltered as they changed to awe, causing his body to freeze for a moment.  But they quickly shifted back, Solus feeling envious of the powers Inmortos had gained. Shouldn’t those powers be his? In time he would. He just needed to be patient for now.


“Man of frost, you’ve done much to avoid the title 'Man of Wax'! Truly deserving songs of both ice and fire” Solus commented, conjuring his own emotions to overcome his awe. “Though your thoughts may be frozen as well necromancer, for we already have a base and a growing cult on Falleen, and would not my master’s home world be more suited to the purpose of training the Fanged one’s chosen? Korriban is a place of rage and darkness after all. Unless of course, you know something I don't…”


Solus stopped and adjusted his sensors like a pair of glasses on a scholar’s nose as a thought struck him.


“Then again, the mad beast we created like some hag’s coven will still be of interest to all of us. No doubt, those of Spider’s Temple would be interested in it. The thing’s soul was birthed from my mind, which in turn was called by the Great Spider. Yes, yes... I would love to be close to my child that I helped sire. All children should remember their fathers after all.”

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Solus gave a salute to his master and happily proclaimed “Yes my Lord!” at the task given to him. Finally, a chance to show his actual skills and to be shown the respect he, the great Solus, the Dragon, deserved. Not to mention it would be an opportunity for his own Madness to grow. The Madness that dwelled thrived in chaos and abandonment, and what was more wild then destruction and battle? Where a wound was possible, the Madness could grow in both Solus and in others. 


Though, Solus had another reason for being so happy. To be told that he was right by his own master, who had so tortured him over and over for speaking out of turn or doing something odd, was ecstasy. While Solus’ sin was envy, his father’s was pride, and he inherited a portion of it from Roshan. And it was very tempting to let his pride take over. 

However, solus resisted for the moment. He turned to Innmortos and bowed. 


“I bid thee farewell, man of frost! May your reign on this dead world be as stable as when it was alive!” 


And to Dictim, “Good luck blind one. Perhaps next we meet we can exchange notes on our paths into the darkness…”


And finally to Bernon, Solus stayed silent for a few moments before saying “Good luck corpsewalker. If you still possess your own body when we meet, then you will impress me.”


With that Solus turned and led the way back down the mountain It certainly was easier going down then up. Once at the bottom, Solus met with the other Linnorms on the planet and gestured towards the ship.


“Lets move you maniacs! We have a world to full of imperial scum that need to die!”


At this, the Linnorms gave out a cheer. Solus chuckled to himself as the ship, filled with Linnorms and Akheron, took off and made preparations for hyperspace. As they did, Solus pulled his instrument and began to play a Bragsanu song. A more sacred one, but one that would get the spirits far more alive for the group. Even as the ship broke hyperspace, the Linnorms were already singing along with the Shard, excited for the possibility of blood and death. 


“Stand up faster! Forever! Faster than the flame! 

Make disaster! Together! Disaster within pain! 

For tonight we’re going wild, as we let loose Golden Child

Rolling faster, faster, faster than the flame!”

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  • 1 month later...

“Alert! Attention all Sith Forces!” 


Solus looked up from his work area. The back of the ship had become a bare bones mess as Solus had removed every panel, pulled out every unessential wire, removed every spare part he could and left them all over the ship. With the gravity controls turned off, (and the separate generator completely dismantled) each part floated in the air for the Shard to pluck out of the empty space near him.  Covering numerous holes were the fleshy pieces of Madness, dripping blood and ichor.


All around him, the gibbering mouths growled and gnashed at the disturbance. Solus sighed, his inner feelings leaking into the Madness once more. He let go of the parts between his hands and pushed himself towards the cockpit, catching himself on the seat’s backrest. 


“What’s so important to interrupt the ritual? one of the mouths blabbered, with the other mouths slowly repeating the question in numerous dissonant tones. Several of the mouths detached from the walls and floated after the Shard, with small wings of veins and fat.  Solus waved them away as the message continued. 


“Korriban is falling! Repeat, Korriban is falling! Imperial Forces have overtaken all sectors and are currently breaching the Praexeum! Repeat! Korriban is lost to the Imperial Forces! Do not approach!”


The message repeated several times, but Solus didn’t hear. Instead, the mouths all over the ship hissed and chuckled at the news.


“One world falls…'' one mouth blubberred, its teeth rotting and cracked. 


“Like Master, like home…” another hissed before being swallowed back into the flesh of the ship. 


Solus nodded at the sounds of Madness that only he could see. His connection with the Madness was growing. His own feelings and thoughts were leaking into the Madness, and they were manifesting themselves. With the death of Akheron, it seemed Solus had lost one of the anchors that kept him away from That In the Rift.


“The Final Death is coming? End of the Enemy…?” One mouth asked, to which the others snickered. 


The slow death. The Unending Void. The Howling End…”


Solus muted the communications and returned back to his work area. Floating in what used to be a small centerpoint hallway, Solus snapped his fingers. The mental click immediately made all the mouths shut themselves and become absorbed into the flesh, eyes replacing the orifices. 


“I need focus please, you stupid wastes of mental space. Focus on this…”


Solus moved his hands over the hilt in front of him. With his previous hilt destroyed on Falleen to aid his escape, Solus needed a new weapon. He would not return before the necromancer without a weapon in hand. 


The screws tightened. The locks clicked. The battery started. The red blade hissed out. Solus grabbed the hilt and held it up before him. All around him the eyes’ pupils dilated or retracted before the bloody light. A moan emitted from somewhere as the fleshy tumors sprouted from the walls and oozed their way to the Shard. The Ritual of the Open Eye was complete, and now the Madness seeped back into the Shard’s subconsciousness.


Later, the ship broke hyperspace over Aaris III. Solus returned to the controls and started his descent. Soon he would be back on Aaris III. What he would do next, Solus was unsure. He just knew his master promised the two would return here, and Solus had no intention of breaking that promise. Plus, maybe he could get an opportunity to win one over the necromancer. Heck, maybe Innmortos’ new apprentice would see the error of his choice in master and request someone more sensible.


After that, Solus wasn’t sure. 

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During the descent, Solus felt it. The scent of Korriban in the Impossible Geometries. It was faint, and tainted, but unmistakably there.


At first, the shard thought the Madness was tricking him. Perhaps the beast that solus help made was trying to trick the living. But the madness didn't work like that. It carried its own flavour in the Force. It's signature and shadings were vastly different and Solus knew it well enough to recognise it at first glance 


This was not the Madness. 


Akheron had returned. 


Solus gripped the controls tightly and descended faster. 


"You dare commit such heresy? " Solus shouted as the ship rumbled amongst the planet's atmosphere. "Return from the Fanged God himself? To deny what is his?!?"


The Madness growled at the edges of Solus mind. Fueled by his emotions, it festered and grew, eager to supplement his powers. 


Despite his growing rage, Solus was able to land the ship gently among the ash and ice of the world. Solus exited the ship and gazed at the world around him as his makeshift cape billowed with the wind. The world felt different but the same. Cold but burnt. It was like nothing happened, but something most definitely did.


"Chase after the Heretic?" The Madness wondered. "Or chase the heresy?"


"Neither. Such hunting is impossible without further information. Instead, we will let them decide." Solus commented. He glanced around the enviroment. "this place is perfect as a killing zone. I will not be tricked like that tree did on Nar Shaddaa. This time, my victim will come to me"


So instead of going out, solus stood and waited. Lightsaber in hand, Solus waited, reciting stories of the dragon Betelguise and the stars he ate. If his master truly came back, he would sense his apprentice and find him. If not, Immortas’ would notice the shards presence and send someone. 


And Solus would teach them that Death remembered all. 

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  • 2 weeks later...

“And so, when the stranger woke again, he walked into lost In-ho-tho-ta…” Solus continued his reciting as snow and ash blew about the Shard’s chassis. He had long since lost track of time, lost in the conjuring of stories he had been in. 


“And at In-ho-tho-ta, the stranger found all manner of beings walking and talking, but they all ignored him, like the lesser thing he was. For in his time, he had not grown fully.” 


Solus paused as he felt energy from the world swirl somewhere. This world clouded his senses terribly. He could still sense his master’s presence, but he could not tell where. Like a compass with a million magnetic poles to track, Solus was unable to mark a bearing for where his master was.   


“And so the stranger walked past In-ho-tho-ta, until he came upon the bony plains. And there, the whispering grew, until he found that which spoke in his dreams. That thing, that terrible visage of scales and bones and flesh and void…” 




Solus stopped and looked around. Nothing greeted him but snow and wind and ash. The voice that had called out was barely a whisper, but it had been there. The very air had grown still around the Shard. 


Solus studied the area, and recognised it. So he continued. 


“...and so that thing spoke to the stranger, asking him his desires. And the stranger gave them. And that thing, in its burbling madness, began to promise those desires…”




The Shard stumbled as the ground beneath him shook with the voice’s shout. The voice had become a storm in of itself, demanding attention. Abovehead, invisible clouds swirled. Madness began to trickle through the very air itself as the Shard looked up. 


Solus began to shake. There in the sky, where once were stars, numerous predatory eyes looked down. Where there used to be clouds, Solus saw tendrils descending around the world. Where there once was gentle blowings of the wind, there was now the unbearable weight of grating flutes.


Where there once was void, there was The Spider


“Not…real…” Solus stammered, trying to hold the Madness back. “Not re-”


Redneterp!” the voice boomed. The planet shook again and Solus was forced onto his back. “Htoa ruoy otni evig!


The Shard shook as the Spider’s eyes became more prominent in the sky. It’s breath blew the ash and snow around him away like dust before a human, revealing the burnt ground below. It’s legs clutched the planet in an attempt to break it apart like some helpless egg.


"Retsam ruoy nommus! Beosta, eman ruoy mih evig dna!”


Solus reacted accordingly. The Spider had commanded, and he would answer. He raised his hand and gestured to the shaking ground before him. The rock broke apart, and upwards the thing began to rise




All of Solus’ being was conjured up and driven to the thing that grew out of the ground. Envy was the first thing to flow from the Shard, but certainly not the only thing. From him came anger, unrest, fear, and grief. The rage against his master’s heresy. The fear of being alone forever. The grief of never being wanted by his original family. Everything Solus had experienced from his birth was conjured and brought forth, and thrown into the Madness. 


Fleshy hands crawled over themselves. Mouths gibbered and screeched with abandon.  Luminescent eyeballs opened up and met the Spider’s gaze. Tendrils extended and flailed wildly, blistering in the freezing air. Carapacic, clawed legs finally broke through the ground, lifting the towering monstrosity upwards. Still, it did not stop. The fleshy tower began to float, and scream and sing with the invisible flutes. The legs pulled themselves into the fleshly mesh, swallowed by large oozing pustules, becoming a flying, tumorous worm-like growth.


“Eman ruoy evig! Beosta! Emlesh sommus! Maercs!” The Spider roared as itself evaporated away into nothing.


In reality, nothing had happened. There was no cosmic being shaking the entire planet with its teeth. The stars were still golden pieces of light billions of lightyears away. All that happened was that Solus experienced another bout of Madness. The madness itself had been momentarily enhanced by the necromancer’s powers that traveled across the planet, and made the vision feel that much more real to the Shard, but it was nothing more than falsehoods in the Force, enhanced by Darkness. 


But this episode of Madness did have one physical effect.  Solus had conjured up something. The illusion he had just given life to rose from the ground into the air and began to scream.  With all of the energies Solus had poured involuntarily into the monster, the thing used to scream and make ripples in the Force. Once Solus had done this before his first ascension. And now, Solus did it through his Madness. To those who knew the Shard, it was easily recognisable. To those who didn’t, it sounded like the ear-piercing screeches of flutes and electricity. 


But most of all, whoever heard it could detect the madness the illusionary Polyp radiated from its core. 


Solus stood and screamed with the thing, gazing at the flying Polyp and the empty sky. Still, he saw the Spider looking down, making demands and shaking the earth the Shard stood on. And so, Solus, and the Polyp, continued to scream.





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Solus and the Polyp changed their gazes to the one who called out. In doing so, the polyp began to flicker in and out of existence, losing the focus and thus the connection of the Shard. It only held on barely by the energies it had absorbed from its creator. Without focus, it had no power. 


Solus gripped his metal hands tighter at the sight of Dictum. Words flashed in his memory, and Solus’ voice box emitted several growling notes. 


“Where is that piece of filth, Blind one?” Solus shouted back, uncaring about pleasenries. 


Then he felt it and saw it. His master’s presence of darkness and pain and hate. The taste of Korriban was now before the Shard across the snow and ash. 


“The proof?” Solus gawked. “You die and spit in our god’s face and ask for proof of my accomplishments?”


The polyp in the sky began a gutteral screech, a representation of the growing anger in Solus. It began to circle in the air, its eyes never leaving the shard’s master. 


“The warship’s weakness will never be the knowledge of its joints and engines. No one except us knows its codes for destruction nor its methods of power supply. And no one except me knows its true blindspot!” 


Solus, in his anger, had recounted several technical details that only those with the plans could possibly know. To be fair, Solus did not have the plans on his person. He made sure to erase every last one on Falleen, and every high ranking cultist died at either his hands or during the Imperial cleansing. The only plans that existed were on the ship itself. But both Solus and, hopefully, Akheron knew that the Shard had a knack for remembering the smallest of details. 


“It’s greatest weakness is still it's only weakness: It’s Lord-Captain, a pretender of the ages. You may have once been my master, but I am your elder! A thing beyond the ages, and the one who will witness the final death. Behold!”


Solus gestured to the Polyp in the sky. The thing screeched and bellowed at the gesture, the Madness leaking in the Force from it like black ichor from a wound. Its flesh began to bubble and boil with unseen heat, and its eyes, barely connected by nerve tissue, almost squeezed out of their sockets.  


“EMLESH BEOSTA!” the thing screamed, the impossible geometries shuddering momentarily. 


“I am a student of the Flesh beyond Stars! Maker and seeker of the ending aeons. Timeless and endless! Observer and destroyer. Scholar and Dragon. 


Solus looked back at his master, and flickered his gaze to Dictim and Bernon.


“The Blind one once told me that to become a Sith Lord, I must slay my master.” Solus said these words still looking directly at Bernon, communicating the tasks ahead for the apprentice of Innmortos “And these words were a reflection of my own father’s tutelage.”


Photoreceptors looked back at Akheron. A metal finger flicked the lightsaber on, its red blade hissing to life. The wind around everyone picked up, as if it could sense what was coming. The Shard’s cape began to flap with it, piece of broken yellow from Falleen. Above, the Polyp circled closer, awaiting for its creator’s rituals, undeterred by the air. 


“Is that what you meant by the next step?” Solus hissed through his voice box as he gestured with his open and towards Akheron to attack. “Shall we break my last chain by breaking you?”

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Solus wasn’t absolutely sure, but he felt like he wasn’t being taken seriously by either Dictum nor his ex-master. He didn’t get any kind of response from them. They didn’t nod in approval, or condemn his speech. They simply didn’t reply. 

Solus’ rage started to flare up further. It was the stupid tree all over again. 


Then the thing attacked. The yellow splash in the Impossible Geometries Solus recognized as danger helped the Shard react accordingly, but barely. His own anger prevented him from completely avoiding the attack. The Shard leapt forward, narrowly avoiding a crushing leg, only to be sent flying with the ice. Solus rolled his landing, and turned his gaze upwards. The thing, the strangely spider-like thing, was power incarnate. It held sway over the natural and unnatural alike. It was born from that which helped birth his Madness, and had mutated beyond recognition. Solus believed it absolutely ranked with Madness in the Geometries. 


“Hahaha! Yes!”  Solus laughed as he began to dart around the battlefield, avoiding another attack. “You have returned at the presence of your parents, haven’t you? You have returned for me? Hahaha!” 


The flying Polyp in the air completely vanished, no longer a focus for the Mad Shard. 


Run!” Dictum cried, to Solus’ insane laughter. The Shard was too elated on his own energies to listen.  Whether or not Solus was right about the thing’s motives did not matter to the Shard. Solus did not realize the thing couldn’t be controlled by himself or even all three of its creators. Solus’ Madness whispered in his ears lies and deceptions that, while he knew they were false, he didn’t care. 


Solus dashed forward, narrowly avoiding another crashing of the thing’s legs and the raining ice debris. As ice chunks rained down, Solus seemed to begin to dance amongst the chaos, striking poses between movements like some Desilijic servant girl. He only moved when a chunk was about to hit where he stood.


The Shard continued to laugh, his vocoder blaring more than ever. Solus was actually beginning to enjoy himself.


“And because one of your parents is wrong, you must kill all of them? Hehehe, yes, that makes sense. Yes! Yes yes yes! Attack! Clatter! Rampage, my sweet little baby! Distract and destroy. Keep the blind one and that necromancer busy while I end the heresy that is Akheron! Hahaha!”


Solus finally stopped dancing long enough to focus on the fleeting form of Akheron. Activated lightsaber still in hand, Solus gave chase. Akheron had a decent head start, and his legs were smaller, but Solus was sure that wherever his ex-master ran, Solus would be able to follow.


A thought flashed in his mind, both a teaching from the Temple of the Spider as well as his own training under Akheron. His prey was running from him. He was not properly armed, and at a disadvantage. The opportune moment to strike was now.  He could not waste what the universe had given him. 


Solus tapped into the Force and willed it through his body. His circuits buzzed with energy. Some Force users called this Force Speed, but to Solus, it was simply pursuit. His form left a trail of afterimages  rapidly closed the distance between him and his master. In a few seconds, his blade would swing across.

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  • 2 weeks later...

As Solus brought his lightsaber across for what was hopefully a killing blow, his form became still in the air. Webs of sticky ‘stuff’ practically suspended the Shard in the air, unable to move at all. 


What the kriffing piece of scrap are you…” Solus started to yell. Having not expected such an attack, his grip on his lightsaber had loosened and the blade, deactivated flew to the side. “You stupid child! This death would have made you happy, and now you only have…”


Solus stopped, then suddenly began to giggle. 


Oh that is clever my child!” Solus called out to the beast, having conjured a new lie to believe. “You stop me because a reckless killing is not worthy of an assassin! Oh sweet child, how I misunderstood you! Haha!”


Solus twisted his head and focused his gaze on where his lightsaber landed. Even as he stood helpless in the air, the Sith apprentice was not helpless. Calling on the Force, the lightsaber shook several times before activating. Solus’ emotions in the Geometries wrapped themselves around the blade’s crystalline heart, born from Solus’ own envy. With an invisible hand gripping the weapon, Solus called it back, blade activated. 


The blade flew. While it was halted momentarily by the webbing's hard material, Solus continued his focus. After a short time, the webbings were sliced through, and Solus fell to the ground. 


“Haha, behold, a new look!” Solus exclaimed as he noted the webbings still stuck to his yellow cape, trailing like ghostly fingers.


Solus caught Akeron’s first words from behind the door. Solus sighed and sheathed his blade. 


“Oh great esteemed master!”  Solus mocked as he pressed his hand against his eye sensors, imitating an actor on stage. “How sorry I am to attack your exposed back! How I should've realized that when you taught me to attack those Acklay,  I wasn’t supposed to use tricks and traps! I was supposed to announce myself to them, like a true Sith Assassin!”


However, try as he wanted, Solus was stuck outside the door waiting. A subtle rage began to regrow in the Shard. He had lost his prime opportunity to kill Akheron. No doubt whatever was inside, Akheron was preparing himself for a fight. Solus dwelled on how he would have to accomplish such a deed. His master was a skilled warrior. No matter what happened, Solus needed to make sure to stay out of his blade’s reach.


Finally, Akheron spoke again. 


 "I will open the door, but I expect no resistance. I wish to discuss a way to resolve our...dispute in a way worthy of a Sith Master and the Darkness. A way I think you will enjoy. You have my word you will not be harmed while we discuss it, I expect the same courtesy, you owe me that at least."


Solus stopped and had to wonder. Was Akheron this dumb to think Solus would actually play by the rules of honor? True, Akheron placed a great deal of emphasis on honor, but for the Shard, honor was a virtue that needed to be purged to make room for Madness. As Chosen Emlee’esh said, virtues were just roadblocks to further discoveries. Course, Akheron didn’t know the Temple’s teachings, but there was no way he was that dumb. No, Akheron had something genuine inside to offer.  


Against his better judgment, Solus was curious. Perhaps something useful would come from playing along for now. If anything, An open door meant potential opportunities to kill the Sith master. Solus just had to be careful. If Akheron expected Solus not to play by the rules of honor, there was no reason he would either. But if he did, it would be proof that Solus was actually dealing with Akheron and not some imitation conjured up by the necromancer. 


“Very well, master, if you insist.” Solus lied as he kept his deactivated saber in his hands.  “It is the least I can do for a heretic like yourself. I swear my blade will not touch you until after we speak. Now let me in. Let's settle this properly, so that way we can calm our mad child. ” 

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If Solus was capable of doing so, he would’ve rolled his eyes. Sadly, he did not have facial muscles, so his look of disappointment was missed. It seems that this thing was in fact, Akheron. The emphasis on honor, the misguided pompousness of being closer to the Fanged god than Solus was, and now the delusion that Innmortos actually belonged to the cult of Bragsanu. 


There was no mistake, this was Akheron and not some false thing made by the necromancer. All of the Shard’s emotions on Falleen had been for naught. 


Solus was about to speak when the necromancer appeared. Or rather, his saber at Akheron’s side shook and the necromancer took form.  


“Oh look, the ghost of Aaris’ past.” Solus commented as the necromancer spoke. Once Innmortos was done, and issued that he would enforce the ruling of such a duel, Solus placed his hands on his hips and laughed.


“I will accept your challenge, you heretics. But not because I actually respect your foolish beliefs Akheron, nor your puny threats, victim of vapor. Had my child not intervened, you would’ve already been dead, and the necromancer would be running from the spider’s terror. I have tapped into powers beyond recognition, and my restraints have been loosened completely. You Akheron, must die, and this… Kaggath is the best opportunity to erase your heresy from history.  And as for you necromancer, you forget my very being! I have lived aeons already, less than nothing! I was banished from everyone, but I ascended! So if I lost and was banished to the insides of your planet, I would return again after its inevitable death!” 


Solus turned and began to leave the chamber, but stopped and faced the two. 


“I am not just Solus, nor the Golden Slave, nor even the Dragon! At the end of this, you will know my true name! Let the ritual of the Kaggoth begin!” 


At this, Solus reached into the Impossible geometries, activated his saber, and threw it upwards. As the blade slashed through the stone ceiling, it began to crumble as the lightsaber cut through a pivotal load-bearing spot. With this, Solus turned and dashed away from the crushing rubble. He didn’t actually believe the rubble would kill Akheron, the wraith-like Innmortos, or even blind Dictum, wherever he was. However, it would provide a distraction so he could get to his ship and make preparations.  

Solus called his blade back as he passed the room’s entrance and sliced at the roof above the door, crumbling it behind him as well. Any continues delays he could cause Akheron, the better for him. True, this wasn’t a 'honorable' tactic, but the playground Akheron had declared was the planet’s wastelands. To Solus, the entire planet was a wasteland, as well as what laid beneath it, like this chamber. Especially Innmortos, the living embodiement of the planet's wastelands.


"Besides" Solus commented to himself. "I'm an assassin. Honor is for the weak"  


Solus dashed with the mania of a madman and returned to his ship, the Force fueling each step. Once inside, the Shard quickly got to work.  First, Solus took the remaining webbing from the spider monster off of his cape and rewrapped it around his lightsaber. When he had been caught up in the webbing earlier, the strange silk resisted a lightsaber blow momentarily, and required Solus to hold the strike to break free. While he doubted it would last more than one strike from Akheron, Solus loved the idea of using his 'childs' gift on his weapon. 


At the ship, Solus did his second task; he made a fake lightsaber hilt. Made up of various parts from the ship that he had already dismantled to construct his latest blade, this fake wouldn't work even with a Kyber crystal. It was nothing more than a fake exterior prop. In his rush, the fake hilt would never pass close inspection, but in combat, it would pass as the genuine. Solus hid the fake hilt behind him and under his cape. 


Finally, Solus retrieved a copy of the Korriban transmission. He knew Akheron still loved his home, even if he didn't admit it. This battle would be more than just a test of skill. It would be a battle of morale as well, and the lord of rage would break under the shards' ingenuity. The message of Korriban falling under the imperials would be useful.


Solus glanced up. He felt something. Something was happening outside his ship. The Shard dashed outside to meet it, his genuine hilt in hand. Whether or not it was Akheron, he didn’t know. But he would be ready for it. 


"Come heretic! Face your undoing!" 

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There, in front of the ramp to the Falleen 578-R Transport, Solus heard his masters’ words. He heard his master calls of madness, and Solus, in his own special case of insanity, almost agreed with him. But he was not weak. Not in the slightest. His master, as much as Solus hated him, had helped make him strong. Akheron taught him to break each and every inhibition, and the Temple, in their strange and esoteric ways, helped Solus connect to something even greater. A ream of the Darkside that few would ever knowingly tap into. 


“Emissary of the Fanged God? Ha!” Solus shouted as he holstered his lightsaber. “Then I must be the ambassador of anarchy!" 


The Kaggoth had begun. 


Solus raised both arms and threw them forward. The Force  reacted as a wave of tendrilled hatred flowed through the Impossible Geometries from the Shard’s center. As it flowed along the cold squares of the ground, the wave picked up everything it could. Snow and ash whipped upwards into a blinding cloud towards Akheron. Solus' memory of facing the that Tree Jedi on Nar Shaddaa flashed back, and the Shard recalled how he got some distance from that giant thing using a similar trick. This time however, neither the tree nor Akheron would bait him into doing something stupid.


“I am your end heretic!!” Solus shouted as he pushed the snow and ash up at Akheron.  


Following this, Solus tapped into the Force again, leaping upwards and landing on the ship’s dorsal area with a resounding clang. The use of so much Force so quickly left the Shard slightly exhausted, but his training had taught him to push on.


Retrieving his genuine blade, Solus crouched and awaited for Akheron to follow, limiting his own visibility from the ground. The Shard’s red blade would ignite and swing the moment Akheron followed. 




(Solus opened this by trying to blind Akheron temporarily with the snow and ash of the planet, followed by Force Jumping onto the relatively flat top of the ship. He has prepared himself to swing the moment Akheron shows his body) 

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The first sign of something nasty heading towards Solus was in the Impossible Geometries. Solus could only describe it as a 'bad feeling' as it crashed towards the ship. Where Solus’ waves of hatred were a black cloud, his master’s was a storm. It was truly a sobering realization of how much a power gap there was between the Shard and the Sith. 


The second sign was the ship itself. It shook before it started to crumble, and Solus realized his first intentional strike was not going to cut it, literally or figuratively. He had to adapt as he leapt backwards with the wave crashing through the ship towards him. Even so, the wave sent him flying. His artifical body groaned as the blast ripped through the metal, but the leap had lessoned the blow slightly, enough for it to not be a killing strike. Even so, his fake Hilt broke apart on his back, and his holorecording did get somewhat damaged. 


Solus flew backwards from the shattering blast. However, his training at the Temple already began to show its benefits. The training in zero gravity, the practice of fighting in the open air, all of these forced Solus to think in three dimensions. As Solus crashed into the ground, he tucked his body in and rolled backwards into a stance, lightsaber drawn, activated and ready. 


" Ow. alright that was unpl... oh kriff" Solus looked up just in time to see his master swinging at him. 


The one advantage Solus had being in close quarters was, ironically, his size.  Being smaller, his movements required less energy and less time to block what the Sith threw at him. However, it took most of his focus just to block the attacks, and the power of each one pushed Solus backwards slightly. With each strike, Akheron would get closer to beating the Shard into a defenseless position. 


This was not good. Solus thought. I need distance. Kriff, if only I had my original body from Ishvara! Then I'd crush him! The children of Ishvara would crush him toge-


On the last blow, Solus blocked and held the strike momentarily, before giving his master what could’ve been described as a determined look.  Or at least, as determined as an analysis droid could look. 


“Tear, now!” Solus shouted.


In the Force, the Madness seeped out and attempted to lodge in Akheron’s mind as Solus performed the Ritual of the Wyyrlok again. Unlike before when awaiting his master’s appearance and calling up the image of some flying polyp, Solus influenced this final result. Here, he used a singular name to pull on the shared memories of both the aggressor and the defender. Specifically, the first memory of the two meeting the first time on Falleen. A memory where Solus had his own ally to use. A fellow child of Ishvara.


A blood curdling howl rose up. From the ash and snow, the hallucination of Tear pounced towards Akheron’s back. He was much more twisted than before. The Sith Hound was caked over in spider webbings, as if it had been inside the great spider beast on the planet. Tear’s glowing red eyes had been replaced with numerous spider ones, each one reflecting an infinite starry night. It was as if this version of Tear had been inside the Kathol Rift and had been mutated by it. 


As the hallucination attacked with a mad fixation, Solus attempted to break away from Akheron. Keeping low to the ground to avoid any accidental swings in his direction, Solus moved around the Sith and moved towards the debris of his ship. During this movement, The Shard kept his sensors focused on Akheron, careful not to break the ritual.


It was difficult, but Solus resisted the urge to mock his master. Instead, he deactivated his blade again and ducked to the ground, hiding behind some of the rubble. While this meant he had to break his gaze on Akheron, ending the Ritual prematurely, it meant he could attempt to vanish from sight. 


Solus crouched under what was the remains of an outer hull plating of the ship. While hiding, the training of fighting the Acklay beasts flashed in the Shard's mind. Deactivated blade in one hand, Solus retrieved his holopad recording and slid it out into the open, activating it.  


The holopad began to display its message of a Sith soldier and his urgent message. The damage it sustained from the Shatter ability made the thing flicker in and out, making it appear like it had been inside the ship and had barely survived. 


“Alert! Attention all Sith forces. Korriban is falling! Repeat, Korriban is falling! Imperial Forces have overtaken all sectors and are currently breaching the Praexeum! Repeat! Korriban is lost to the Imperial Forces!”


The trap now set, Solus prepared himself for Akheron to investigate the urgent message. If the fall of his home world didn't interest the Sith master, then Solus doubted this was Akheron at all. When his master was in view, Solus would strike again. 


(Leaping from the ship and losing his planned attack, Solus is barely able to block Akheron's attacks, albeit, barely. He has taken damage and his fake hilt no longer would fool anyone. Forced into a corner, Solus had to use a mental attack with the Ritual of the Wyyrlok, and broke away to hide amongst the rubble of the ship. He is attempting to distract Akheron with the recording about Korriban's fall to imperial forces. )

Edited by Solus
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The ground underneath Solus trembling made Solus begin to scare. He had no idea how Akheron figured out his exact position, but that didn’t matter now. Solus was caught, even as he tried desperately to crawl out from his hiding spot as the ground crumbled underneath him. He was stuck under the piece of hull plating of his ship.


Solus felt the yellow mist in the Impossible Geometries. The danger was about to strike him. Turning over onto his back, he called upon the force to push the hull plating away from himself in the direction of his advancing Master. As the makeshift shield was quickly and steadily shredded apart by Akhron’s strikes, with Solus stuck in the ground, a sense of dread began to set in. 


On the back of the hull, in Solus' mind, the eyes of the Spider and the Fanged God looked at the Shard, eager for his destruction.


Solus laughed as the dread consumed him. This was the way of the Madness. This was the way of the Fanged God. To kill and to be killed. Nihilism incarnate. Even as the potential of Solus' death drew near, the Shard couldn't help but love the fact. 


Solus threw his blade with all his might towards the makeshift shield that Akheron shredded. His Korriban recording had the side effect of enraging his master, that much was certain. And as Solus recalled from his own duel with the tree, Pure Rage was not the most defensive tactic. Solus had fallen into that trap. Hopefully, so did Akheron, and the blade would get a strike as the piece of hull was torn away


Immediately afterwards, Solus freed himself from the ground. With all sense of safety abandoned , Solus no longer cared if he had to overdraw on the Force itself, even at the cost of his own chassis’ energy. The burst of strength and speed allowed himself to roll over to his hands and knees. Solus followed this up by Force Jumping from his position directly at his foe


Enhanced fully with the Force Jump, Solus raised his right arm forward  as if he was going to grab Akheron’s face. In reality, his left hand’s finger opened up, scomp link extended. There was no way he could get Akheron unscathed. The right arm was just a ploy and a sacrifice. But if for a moment, in all of Akheron’s rage and instincts, Solus could manage to get his off hand close, he could lodge it into Akheron’s eye and drain the very knowledge from his brain. He would suck everything he could out of that Sith’s brain, and if Akheron was weak or surprised enough, kill him then and there. 


As Solus rapidly flew towards Akheron with the speed of a bullet, Solus threw his off hand forward, scomp link aimed towards Akheron’s eye. All the while, the shard's voicebox continued to laugh and cackle madly. 


(Solus got caught in the Tremor Impact and was unable to get himself into a better position as a result. When Akheron attacked with Sawblade strike, Solus attempted a makeshift shield to hold Akheron back momentarily. Solus then threw his lightsaber at Akheron, hoping it would get a strike in, given his own experiences with rage and becoming defenseless. Following this, Solus is overdrawing on the Force, barely able to free himself, and Force Jumping at Akheron, attempting to Drain Knowledge with his scomp link. )

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  • 2 weeks later...

When the saber sliced through his arm, Solus’ voice box emitted a screech of pain. Though the shard had no nerve muscles to speak of, he could feel his body thanks to his odd physiology. His electromagnetic sense, combined with the sensors built into the body, meant that the sabers cut was infinitely more painful than anything he felt before. Only the tree before had dealt such pain to the Shard. 


The pain sustained in the Shard’s mind as he was tossed through the air. Unable to focus on anything but the pain, Solus crashed into the ground unceremoniously, entirely different from when he had tried to dodge and avoid his master’s attacks from Force and Lightsaber alike. The Shard lifted his head from the snow and ash, and gripped at his sliced appendage. 


However, Solus stopped screaming. The whisperings of the Madness began to grip at the Shard’s mind. Weakened and exhausted, Solus had become susceptible to the Madness and all its cosmic malignancy. If Solus gave the slightest inkling of weakness, it would consume and devour him, ending his very being as he knew it. There wouldn’t be death. There wouldn’t be any glorious meeting with the Fanged God, nor an eternity of emptiness and loneliness. It would be as if Solus soul never existed, and instead replaced by something else. 


This was the price the Temple of the Spider preached. 


The panic that began to set in during the Shard’s realization would make anyone sympathetic. Even as Solus tried to push the whisperings from his head, he couldn’t fight the hallucinations creeping around him. The immortal flesh crawling from under the snow. The eyeballs sprouting on the debris. The spiders crawling on his spinal circuits. Solus glanced at his missing arm. From its stub, new cancerous tissue began to emerge. 


Control…I need control. Focus…i need to focus… Solus thought rapidly. I cannot surrender now…not yet… I can’t lose now, not yet, no no no no, not yet! Focus on something, anything, just not yet...


Then Solus heard his master’s words. The hatred that sprung up from just seeing him still alive was enough to push the Madness back. The hallucinations backed down, unable to beat the raw emotion that Solus conjured up in that one moment of pure hatred aimed at his master. 


Solus stood up from place and faced Akheron, holding his broken arm. His sensors flashed over to where his lightsaber lay, half buried in the snow and ash. For a moment, the hilt twitched. The hatred and envy of Akheron cheating death was enough to give the Shard one last second wind if he demanded it. If Solus allowed it, the Madness would take hold and do everything in its power with his body to kill Akheron. All he had to do was to call and surrender to it. 


Solus fell to his knees, clutching his injured arm. As much as he wanted to kill Akheron, he did not want to die yet. And beyond all that, he still wanted to ascend. To rise above what he was, and what he still was. Only then, would he find more power to control the Madness, and then, on his terms, kill everyone and bring about the end of everything. Solus turned his gaze downwards, as he awaiting what happened next. 

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“Aeon…” the Shard repeated the word once, feeling it in the language of sound before letting it reverberate within his own being. It felt right, It resonated with him. His master had chosen well. How ironic that before the Kaggoth began, Solus declared that Akheron would know his true name! Solus had believed he would force Akheron his own name he had learned from the Temple. Disciple Emlesh Beosta: A disciple of Flesh Beyond Stars. But rather, Akheron had reversed the situation.


This turn of events even made his own hatred shake… 


Darth Aeon, Solus no more, rose and faced his master fully. A new found humility that had helped douse the raging feelings of hate and  compelled the Shard to speak.  


“I accept my title…and my punishment, in equal measure Akheron. I am delighted to see my worth fully recognized for all of our Sith brethren to see, but I also recognize that If this battle has proved one additional  thing, it is evident that my personal theology needs the same tempering that I have received from you. And while I still cannot view the necromancer's practices as sanctified in our deity’s eyes, I recognise that it was your own power that brought you back. You are not the heretic I believed you were. You are truly a Lord of Rage.”


“I will do what’s expected of me, not just for the sake of our clan, but also for our Empress as well. I will continue to ascend beyond my youth, and increase my abilities. Eventually, the galaxy will witness the great Final Death”


Aeon then turned his attention to Innmortos. While he still viewed the necromancer with hatred and disgust, Aeon recognised now was the time of temperance. His reckless rage had cost him a coveted position. He needed to stay  calm and wait for a better time to prove the necromancer’s erroneous ways. 


“I will accept any punishment the clan sees fit for my error in judgment on the Lord-Captains of our clan.“

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  • 2 weeks later...

Aeon bowed at the words of Dictum. 


How do I forget that despite your blindness, you see better than myself? First your words on my master, and now this! Fellow child of the Dark, your words once again ring true in my very Shard! How fortunate we are to have you amongst us.” 


Then the necromancer spoke. Despite his hatred he was currently experiencing towards the undead creature, Aeon kept his composure. The idea of speaking privately with the thing did not appeal to him, but he was still on thin ice, and needed to practice some restraint still until a more opportune moment came to pass. 


“Hmm, your idea has merit, oh great one!” Solus added, indicating towards Dictum. “The clan always needs more members of his caliber. Perhaps we can do an induction ceremony for Dictum at your ship, much like how we inducted you on Akheron’s ship. Of course…”


Aeon paused and raised his still working hand to his face, as if in thought. 


“I don’t think we have witnessed your ship, have we necromancer? But you must surely have one, or is your title of Lord-Captain just a formality? Unless of course you think this planet is your ship? If so, then I'd love to see this fine, pale vessel in action against the Alliance! Haha!”


Aeon laughed at his own joke, an effort to simultaneously lighten the situation as well as poke some fun at the necromancer. 

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When the ground shook, and the Ziggurat began to rise, Aeon felt a smote of the emotion of awe. To see the massive thing rise up on power solely of the darkside was wondrous to say the least. Where Akheron had displayed power in the use of the blade, here Innmortos demonstrated power in the use of the Force. 


The feeling of awe was quickly swallowed by feelings of envy and despisement. What had this necromancer done to deserve a planet to end on a whim, and now a floating citadel? 


“I stand humbly corrected, man of… er, Lord-Captain” Solus bowed gently to Innmortos, barely correcting himself before giving the necromancer another sneering title. It was as much as he could handle not giving into his own envy at this time. 


Aeon listened to Dictum’s words and, while he was initially disappointed that the assassin refused membership in the clan, he saw a different opportunity arise. 


“I would be honored to be bound alongside you, for your wisdom has already given me fruit Assassin. And if I may add…


Aeon held up his destroyed hand again. This time however he seemed to realize what he was doing, for he had to pause and look at it before lowering it to continue talking. 


“As a being who represents the Temple of the Spider, they would always be interested in helping you along your path in exchange for whatever wisdom you may be able to provide. I know we both found intelligence during our short time together with the Master of Hides, and having witnessed the Temple, I can assure you there is much more to be discovered.” 

Aeon looked where he last saw his lightsaber in the ground, exposed to the rapidly cooling air. Raising his good hand, the blade shook in the snow before flying towards Aeon's open hand. 


"Might I suggest, gentlemen, that we get someplace a bit more...habitable? While I am impressed with your power Necromancer, I doubt everyone here will appreciate the dropping temperatures and thinning air. Even your powers I'd imagine has its limits to providing life for the living, and I wouldn't mind fixing myself. "

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