Beyond Exodus [Dark AU, All cast] Chapter Five: Jaina, Kyp (Updated 04/13)

Discussion in 'Fan Fiction- Before, Saga, and Beyond' started by Ceillean, Jan 26, 2013.

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  1. Ceillean Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Nov 13, 2001
    star 5
    Title: Exodus
    Author: Ceillean
    Timeframe: n/a
    Characters: everyone we love just different [face_devil]
    Notes: Well...I started this story a year ago. Maybe even two years ago, all because @Maggy claimed I wasn't capable of writing an AU. This is to prove her wrong.

    [IMG]

    Summary: The Sword of the Jedi. A legend long forgotten. An artefact lost throughout the ages. And one man's bane. Kyp Durron is forced to aid the Empire but his heart is set on finding the Sword that will set him free, even if it means death.

    As the galaxy is in turmoil, torn asunder by war waged between the Empire and those few who oppose it, hope burns brightly. Hidden from his enemies, hiding his most precious gift, Luke Skywalker has turned his back on the fight until one fateful encounter changes everything.

    The Force, known only to those who have learned to wield it, travels far to find three young people in different corners of the galaxy, unknown to one another...but the key to peace.
    Last edited by Ceillean, Apr 13, 2014
  2. Ceillean Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Nov 13, 2001
    star 5
    One

    Aboard the Daedalus


    Death by torture wasn’t the way Ganner Rhysode wanted to go.

    No. Somewhere up high amongst the stars behind the controls of his X-Wing, obliterated into tiny molecules while saving the universe. A hero’s death suited him just fine.

    But this?

    This was not a good death.

    “Tell me what I want to know.”

    Slumped in a metallic chair, Ganner tilted his head back and cracked a bloody smile. It seemed like every inch of his body was on fire, starting at his toes and slithering upward into his head. He coughed, winced at the pain in his lungs and spat on the floor, spittle mixed with bright red blood in front of his captors’ booted feet. “You’re not my type, sweetheart.”

    At first there was that quiet clicking sound, a button pushed with a perfectly manicured fingernail. Then torrents of electricity shot through his body. Slowly, white smoke twirled upward and it held the putrid stink of burned hair. The pain in his muscles was immense but he refused to scream. He wouldn’t make a single sound.

    And then suddenly it was over.

    For about five seconds.

    Ganner had just enough time to blink sweat from his eyes before the red-headed schuttahit the button again. His body jerked up from the chair but there was nowhere to go with his hands bound tightly around the back. Muscles snapped taught, tendons rose from beneath his skin. Seconds of agony turned into an eternity of white hot pain.

    “Are you done toying with me?” She lifted her thumb from the button, lips twisted up into a sweet little smile. Maybe in some parallel dimension she would have been pretty. She was all female, which was abundantly clear given the tight combat suit painted onto her body and she had a nice face, too. But her eyes gave the evil away. It was like looking into the burning tar pits of hell.

    “Who said anything about toying?” Ganner tried to breathe normally but given how many volts of electricity had run through his body, it was difficult. “I’m not into red-heads, that’s all.”

    She purred at him as she came closer, quiet little taps on the floor when she swayed her hips from side to side. Ganners’ eyes were glued to the little device clutched in her hand. It was so clichéd that he almost laughed. For a moment he imagined he was stuck in some cheap action flick and just before he died, his friends rescued him.

    It was a nice fantasy at least. He knew for a fact that no one was going to come get him.

    “Pity.” She said quietly, setting the device aside on a low table just a step away. It was a different kind of torture, letting him actually see the instruments that might or might not lead to his death. He foresaw a shavitload of pain in his immediate future.

    Ganner swallowed when she picked up a thin silver laser scalpel, the kinds used by field medics in war zones. Depending on which level the laser was set, the things could cut through bone like butter. Fear made his heart hammer against his ribs. He wasn’t too keen on losing body parts after all.

    She held it firmly in her hand as she turned to face him, red hair framing an elegant face. No wonder the Empire used her as a weapon. She could blend into almost any scene, a perfect actress.

    Two steps later, she was standing in front of him. “I’m not going to kill you.” She moved her free hand along the inside of his thigh and then straddled his shaky legs, always making sure the laser scalpel was in his line of sight. “Killing is so messy. And I don’t like messes.”

    She led her fingers up his abdomen, along his chest and around his neck until she could grab a portion of his hair. She tugged his head back roughly. “I feel your pain. I sense your fear.” Her breath was warm against his cheek, a deadly whisper. “I like it.”

    Ganner breathed in deeply, disturbed by the fact that his beautiful captor smelled like a field of roses.

    “You will tell me what you know.” She went on, her lips touching his ear. “You will give me every little detail about the Rebellion. You will tell me everything.”

    “I won’t.”

    “I will break you, Ganner Rhysode.”

    “You can try.”

    She kissed him, a hard kiss so cold it almost made the blood freeze in his veins. Teeth bit into his lower lip as she pulled back. “Tell me what I want to know.”

    He answered with a scream as she went to work with the scalpel.

    *

    “I see you’re still chasing ghosts.”

    Startled, Kyp Durron looked up from various reports scattered on his desk. So preoccupied with his thoughts, he hadn’t heard Mara Jade enter his office.

    He frowned. “Get out.”

    She had no business being anywhere near him, period. Bad enough they had to breathe the same air. If it were up to Kyp, he’d have shot her ass out an airlock years ago.

    She tsked him, coming closer while eying his little collection of historical reports, folklores of various planets and reviews on an ancient artefact Kyp was searching for and he’d been at it for the better part of ten years. Frack...had it truly already been so long?

    I am not obsessed.

    Yeah.

    And maybe – just maybe – if he told himself this often enough, he might actually believe it.

    “You do realize that all this is only a myth.” She spread her arms to the sides, gesturing to the mess Kyp had made within the past – he looked at the chrono in his desk – five hours. A quiet sigh escaped his throat but he didn’t respond to Mara’s quip.

    “Leave, Jade. I’m not in the mood.”

    “Do you really believe that there’s some all powerful artefact out there? Something to boost your power so you can rule the galaxy?”

    “I don’t want to rule the galaxy.”

    “Then why all this?” She grabbed an old piece of flimsy and waved it in front of his face. “If not to use it for your own gain?”

    Kyp ripped the flimsy from her hand and narrowed his eyes. “Either you tell me what you want or you get the kriff out of my office.”

    She leaned her hip against his desk and lifted her lips into a sweet little smile. It was a mask, nothing more. “Our guest isn’t being very cooperative.”

    “And?”

    “He’s being...difficult.”

    Kyp snorted. He knew exactly why Jade had come to him instead of one of the other Jedi on board the ship. He had quite the affinity for playing around with the mind and whatever Kyp wanted to know, he’d find out sooner or later. The only downturn was the numbing headache afterwards and since he valued his brain, Kyp tended to not involve himself in prisoner interrogations.

    “Why should I care?”

    She came closer, step by step, until Kyp smelled her sweet perfume. She touched him, a single finger in the center of his chest near his heart. “He knows things. Not only about the Rebellion but about your precious little artefact. He’s delirious and he keeps whispering about the Jedi and the Sword. And since I know how...” She pursed her lips. “...obsessed...you are with this legend, perhaps you’d like to hear his ramblings for yourself.”

    Kyp ground his teeth together but kept his feelings covered by a blanket of calm. She had him alright and she knew it.

    Smiling, she gave him a little wave and left his office. Kyp stared at the closed door for a quiet moment and then, cursing to himself, followed the wretched woman.

    *

    It seemed like a lifetime ago. Back when the Rebellion was still the New Republic, back when the Empire was still recovering from a near fatal blow by its enemies, back when life had seemed simple.

    Throughout the years everything had turned from either black or white to grey. They lost perspective. Who were the good guys? Who were the bad guys?

    No one really knew.

    But Kyp remembered friends. Ganner Rhysode had once been a friend. In another life, in another time, long ago when things had been black or white.

    “You look like hell.” Kyp commented softly, crouching down in front of the other man. Jade had done a number on him alright. Ganner was hanging on by a single thread.

    Countless incisions covered his bare torso, perfect little cuts, a shiny carpet of oily red. Kyp couldn't imagine the pain.

    Hands bound behind his back, bare feet shackled to the metallic chair, Ganner slowly raised his head and met Kyp's stare. His eyes were empty.

    “Save her.” Ganner whispered between chapped lips. “She must live.”

    Kyp heard Jade's footsteps behind him, walking a path down the length of the interrogation chamber.

    Click. Click. Click.

    “What are you talking about?”

    “She's our only hope.” He was talking so fast, Kyp had trouble understanding the words. He kept repeating them over and over again, like a prayer, something to hold on to because he knew his time was up.

    “Who is she, Ganner?”

    “Save her. She's our only hope. Save her.”

    “Ganner.” Kyp gripped the man's face and focused on black, dead, empty eyes. Whatever soul had once inherited Ganner's body had disappeared. Kyp focused on the Force and used it to break through Ganner's already damaged wall protecting his thoughts. It crumbled and opened up a doorway to Ganner’s memories.

    He saw a woman, a beautiful woman who seemed eerily familiar. Kyp was sure he'd seen her before but he didn't remember where. He saw a wedding ceremony, the woman whispering words of endearment.

    “Save her.” Ganner whispered frantically. “The Sword. You must save her. She's our only hope.”

    Kyp cut the connection abruptly, a frown on his forehead. He heard Mara's silent laughter behind him, her heels still clicking away on the floor.

    Ganner stared at him, lucid, if only for a moment. “Save her, Kyp.”

    He drew one more breath before his body went into a fit, shaking and trembling, until he grew quiet for eternity.
  3. DARTH_MU Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Feb 9, 2005
    star 4
  4. LexiLupin Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Mar 27, 2011
    star 4
    HI! Yes, lol, this is the AU I was referring to via PM. Yay for continuing/revamping it! Tags please? [face_batting]
  5. Nyota's Heart Combos & Paragraphs Host

    Game Host
    Member Since:
    Aug 31, 2004
    star 6
    Wow, amazing. =D= Of course Kyp in your hands is terrific even transformed. :D @};-
  6. Durroness Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Sep 4, 2002
    star 1
    Ummm, Yay! I love the way you write Kyp. Even in an AU that seems vastly different than what we know, he still seems like Kyp.

    I guess tagging is the new PM, so could you tag me when you update? Thanks :)
    Jade_eyes likes this.
  7. Iverna Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Feb 20, 2008
    star 4
    Yay, this is back! Love it. I love how everyone's the same, but different, if that makes sense. I actually felt bad for Ganner, even though I never liked him much in profic. I'm definitely looking forward to more Mara and Kyp interaction, they're fun. Evil fun.

    Will you tag me when you update please? [:D]
  8. Ceillean Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Nov 13, 2001
    star 5
    @DARTH_MU : Jaina...Maybe... [face_whistling] Or maybe not... I'm not telling, just yet.

    @LexiLupin : I shall tag you. :) Not so much continuing but rather completely revamping the story. Which is soooooooooooo much fun. :D

    @Jade_eyes : Thanks, sweetheart. :) I'm happy to deliver when it comes to Kyp. @};- I really missed writing him.

    @Durroness : Thank you for reading. And I'm very glad that you like Kyp. He's absolutely my favorite to write. And I'll gladly tag you. :)

    @Iverna : It's back, yep. Just different. :D Yeah, too bad for Ganner. I liked him but someone had to go. And there will be more Mara and Kyp. And tag you I will.

    :D :D It's so nice having readers again.

    [:D]
    Iverna and Jade_eyes like this.
  9. Ceillean Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Nov 13, 2001
    star 5

    Two

    Murninkam, Corva Sector, Outer Rim Territories

    “Are you positive that we're in the correct place?” Raynar Thul pulled up the hem of his dark green robe, already irritated by the grime eating at his Jaqu’in designer boots. The robe had been a gift given to him by one of the beautiful ladies who wished to court him and the hem was studded with blue gems that she had supposedly applied herself. It was a truly beautiful work of art but utterly worthless after twenty minutes of stalking through mud.

    “Yes.” Zekk answered, throwing him a curious look over his broad shoulders. The man was insanely tall with long legs and unlike Raynar had no trouble whatsoever traversing the swampy field. He stopped for just a moment to catch his breath. But the air smelled of dead animal and tasted even worse. The heat was almost unbearable. Beads of sweat ran a path down his temples and neck and would undoubtedly leave stains on the white jabot fastened to his shirt.

    “Who, in their right mind, would voluntarily live here?” Raynar asked and nearly cried out in alarm as a snake like creature with countless little legs slithered over his feet and quickly disappeared into the muddy water a moment later. Insects buzzed about him and no matter how often he swatted them away, or rather tried to, they kept coming back.

    “A very desperate man, Raynar.” Zekk said quietly while he led the way further in mud, slime and filthy animals.

    Raynar sidestepped a rock that turned out to be a strangely formed created with bulging blue eyes set widely apart atop its round head. I hissed at him, baring tiny pointy teeth when it scurried past his boot. Raynar would have gladly traded in his glamorous attire to leave this slimy mud hole and spend the next few days at a paradise vacation resort instead.

    “Please enlighten me, Master Zekk.” He began and when Zekk turned to face him, Raynar narrowed crystal blue eyes. “Why are we here? Why do we need this man who chooses to live in grime and dirt, going out of his way to avoid civilisation?”

    Zekk abruptly stopped and Raynar nearly ran into him. Zekk was an imposing figure, almost two meters tall. Thick black hair was pulled into a tight plait and now hung limply over his right shoulder. Most people made it their business to get out of Zekk’s way. Raynar was one of them.
    He took a step back and forced a smile onto his face. “I meant no disrespect, of course.” Raynar quickly added.

    “Of course you didn’t.” Zekk echoed without mirth.

    Raynar didn’t like the way Zekk looked at him, as if evaluating. Defiance bubbled up and Raynar pitched his chin forward, meeting Zekk’s cool gaze head on. They stared at one another for several tense seconds. Eventually, Zekk gave a little nod and spun around. “Skywalker.” He muttered quietly.

    Stunned, Raynar nearly tripped as he heard the name. “He’s here? He’s...alive?”

    *

    They came out into a wide grassy clearing. Beyond it lay a vast lake with water birds jumping along the surface. The taste of salt lay in the air. In the center of the clearing, surrounded by a multitude of colorful flowers, stood a cottage. A speeder bike, antique by the looks of it, was locked down inside an open garage and Zekk spotted a few droid parts scattered about. It'd be a miracle if all the stuff actually still worked, given the humidity of the planet.

    As Zekk and Raynar approached, the front door opened, sliding sideways into the wall. The man in the doorway, short and old, was not the man Zekk remembered.

    “Why have you come?” He demanded, his voice clear and firm. Zekk smiled. His appearance might have changed but Luke Skywalker still had that annoying pitch in his voice, the one he'd used when he'd still taught at the academy.

    It felt like a lifetime ago.

    “We came because we'd like to talk.” Zekk answered truthfully. He stood only a few feet away and bowed in greeting. “If you would grant us an audience, of course.”

    “Depends on what you want to talk about.” Luke raised his brows and folded his arms over his chest. He wore standard civilian clothes, a tool belt around his hips and surprisingly a blaster hugged his upper leg.

    Zekk suddenly caught movement behind Luke. A little girl hid in a corner but she craned her neck to see better nonetheless. He estimated that she was about eight years old and when Zekk managed to get a good look at her face, he swallowed. His stomach churned. Her pretty round face prompted memories that he would rather forget.

    “She looks just like her.” Zekk whispered quietly. “She’s grown.”

    “Yes. It’s what children do.” Luke ran a hand through snow white short hair and stepped aside. “Come in. And take your shoes off.”

    *

    “You don’t understand.” Raynar pleaded. “These boots are high quality leather and –“

    Zekk glared at him, all but ready to rip his fancy clothes to shreds. He took a deep breath instead and jabbed a finger into the other man’s chest. “Take off the damned boots.”
    Raynar swallowed but eventually he nodded and actually did as he was told.

    As Zekk turned around to face his former Master, he couldn’t hide his smile. Luke held the little girls’ hand and gently ran his thumb along her knuckles as he gestured to a sitting area in the next room.

    After Raynar reluctantly set his boots aside, they followed Luke and took seats at a round wooden table. The walls were bare, safe for a few drawings Luke’s daughter had made and a single family picture that had been taken so very long ago. Zekk swallowed as he saw Cally in the photograph. He recognized the tall trees in the background and the small silvery blossoms of the Mariin flowers that grew on Ossus. The picture must have been at least fifteen years old because both Luke and Cally were still happy.

    “Nice place you have here.” Zekk said, gratefully accepting a steaming cup of tea that Luke set down on the table in front of him. Raynar declined with a tight lipped smiled.

    “I chose to live outside the city.” Luke took a seat opposite Zekk. “It’s quieter out here. Not so many prying eyes and eavesdropping ears.”

    Zekk watched as the little girl climbed onto her fathers’ lap. While she sat there, she shifted her attention from Zekk to Raynar and back again.

    “What’s your name, sweetheart?” Zekk asked quietly. She’d been born in secret, that much Zekk knew, right around the time the Empire regained its power. And just a few years later, Cally had been taken.

    “Etain.” She said while going for a glass of water in front of her. “Your name is Zekk, isn’t it?”

    “Yes.” He chuckled softly. “And how did you know?”

    “I recognized you. From holoimages.”

    Zekk sat back with a warm feeling in the pit of his stomach. It was nice to know that he hadn’t been forgotten. “This is my friend, Raynar.” He gestured to the man who looked like a picture of misery.

    Etain giggled and when she laughed, it was like hearing Cally. She leaned forward and whispered as quietly as she could. “His clothes look funny.”

    *

    “What's this about?” Luke asked when Etain had gone to her room.

    “I think you already know.” Zekk answered.

    “And I think you already know what the answer is to your question.” He took a sip of his tea. “It was a waste of time coming here, Zekk.”

    “I can't believe that.”

    Luke shrugged. “Believe what you want.”

    Zekk set his cup aside and folded his hands atop the table. He'd already figured it was going to take more than just a pretty please to get him to join their cause. “We need you, Luke.”

    “I'm done with the war.” Luke said, shaking his head. “I'm done.”

    He'd already given up, Zekk realized. There was no fight in him anymore, just a shell left behind, functioning to take care of his child. And that was it.

    “You can't give up.” He said quietly.

    Luke slammed his cup on the table and narrowed his eyes on his old friend. “I can't give up?” He echoed, oblivious to the fact that he was spilling tea all over. “The enemy you fight, the enemy you're trying to fight, is so much stronger than you can ever to imagine.”

    “So you choose to hide? You choose to run away?” Raynar asked, frowning at the man who had once been the most feared and the most powerful man in the galaxy. And Zekk knew exactly what was going through Raynar’s mind as the younger man watched Luke Skywalker contemptuously – where had that man gone?

    “I protect my daughter.” Luke answered firmly, settling his eyes on Raynar and then on Zekk. “I protect the only link I have left to my wife and to the outside world. She is all that is important.”

    “She's growing up in solitude --”

    “Hidden away from the Empire. They would see her harmed. Because of me.”

    Zekk shook his head sadly. “Imagine a galaxy without the Empire, Luke. Imagine not having to hide anymore. Don't you want that for your daughter?”

    “It's not that simple.”

    Slowly, Zekk got to his feet. He knew it would be senseless to keep arguing the point because obviously, Luke Skywalker had made up his mind long ago. It had been worth a shot, though. Because Force knew, the Rebellion needed all the help they could get.

    “Just one more thing before we leave, Luke.” Zekk said quietly. “You once said something to me that had a profound influence in the course of my life. The words keep ringing through my head over and over and over again and it took me half my life to realize that what you said was absolutely true.”

    “And what was that?” Luke asked, his voice utterly tired.

    “The choices of one shape the future of all.” Zekk moved away from the table and turned his back on his old friend, on his former mentor. “Words to live by, don't you think?”

    ****

    @LexiLupin @Durroness @Iverna @Jade_eyes
  10. Nyota's Heart Combos & Paragraphs Host

    Game Host
    Member Since:
    Aug 31, 2004
    star 6
    Zekk is very eloquent in this =D= and Luke is resigned. :( I like Etain :) and Cally ... even if that's who I think it was, she's different from "Callista" [face_laugh] :p My mind runs in mushy avenues :D ... so even if they're on opposite sides, when L&M meet, [face_dancing] beautiful sparks will fly. :) :)
    Last edited by Jade_eyes, Jan 29, 2013
    Ceillean likes this.
  11. Durroness Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Sep 4, 2002
    star 1
    Ha, Raynar and his wardrobe. But what I really took away from this post is how under-utilized Zekk is in pro-fic. I typically find him to be kind of a meh character, but when he takes charge, he's kind of awesome. I mean, telling Luke Skywalker what's up... good work Zekk!

    Thanks for the tag, and for updating so fast!
    Ceillean likes this.
  12. Ceillean Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Nov 13, 2001
    star 5
    @Jade_eyes Yeah, I like an eloquent Zekk. Just like Kyp, he's an awesome character but barely has any decent screen time. Plus, canon so totaaaaallly messed up his character by sending him away without any kind of explanation and then, voilá, he's back. Yes, Luke is resigned. A lot's happened but it'll clear up in later chapters. And Cally...well...she IS Callista. And I'm going to have to give you bad news here, Luke and Mara won't meet. At least I hadn't planned on them meeting.

    @Durroness First time I've ever written Raynar. I thought the wardrobe thing might fit. He always struck me as the fussy kind. Zekk actually has a rather big role in the story. I love playing with more minor characters. It's so much more fun.

    *

    Thanks for reading! *hugs*
  13. Ceillean Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Nov 13, 2001
    star 5
    Three

    Aboard the Daedalus

    They moved the body quietly. Two officers, wearing white biohaz suits, came through the heavy doors with a hover gurney between them. Silently, they undid the binds still holding Ganner Rhysode’s body upright. He fell forward into the arms of one of the officers, his head hitting the man’s shoulder. As if waiting for one last passionate kiss, Ganners’ lips were slightly parted.

    Mara Jade smiled.

    Another job well done, she thought as she watched the officers lay the heavy body atop the gurney. They covered it with a stark white sheet. Small blood stains appeared where the sheet stuck to the body. Mara’s smile turned wicked. She’d carved her initials into his torso, right above his heart, so even in death, Mara Jade would be with him.

    She’d had a lot of fun tickling him for information. Too bad Rhysode had been too stubborn to die properly, with a lot of screams. His death hadn’t been all that satisfactory.

    But Kyp Durron’s pain filled face made up for everything.

    He seemed a bit withdrawn as he stood on the other side of the room, strong arms folded across his chest. He stepped aside to let the officers leave, the hover gurney in their wake.

    “Would it mean anything if I said I was sorry?” Mara asked with half a laugh. “I hadn’t expected him to die so quickly. And so painfully. I thought you Jedi were a bit more resilient.”

    He faced her, slowly. And in those few seconds it took for his eyes to meet hers, Mara wondered whether or not she’d pushed the Jedi Master too far this time. She saw darkness in that look, evil so old that it made a cold shiver run along her spine. He didn’t move, not an inch. He stared.

    Mara didn’t budge. Her heels clicked while she slowly approached, red lips in a pout. “You’ve wasted years looking for this ancient artifact when all this time, the Sword of the Jedi was a woman.”

    Her laughter was her mistake.

    A blast of ice cold wind knocked her off her feet. Her back connected with the wall, rattling her teeth. She slid to the floor, stunned for the moment. Mara blinked away blurriness and slowly scrambled back to her feet. This was exactly the kind of reaction she’d been hoping for. She wanted Durron to hurt, she wanted him broken just like all the rebel scum she’d interrogated throughout the past few months.

    On their knees and begging for mercy.

    Mara rushed him, right hand balled into a tight fist that she swung at his head. He ducked in time and shoved her away. His foot came up and nearly caught her square in her face but she elegantly jumped aside and used the momentum to swing another fist at his temple. She caught him but barely. Didn’t even elicit a grunt which pissed her off even more. Like a couple engaged in a beautiful dance routine they traded shots on equal terrain. Although Mara knew that Kyp could do better and for the moment she didn’t care that he was holding back. All she wanted was for him to hurt, nothing more.

    She went for one of two glass daggers sheathed at her calf. She’d taken to carrying them around wherever she went and not even the Captain disagreed with her even though there was a strict policy on weapons aboard his ship. The daggers belonged to her, were part of her.

    The dagger was cool in the palm of her hand. She gripped it tightly, swung her arm back and threw her beloved blade towards her foe. Directing its trajectory with the Force, she made sure it flew towards Durron’s chest. If it caught its target, it’d do a lot of damage but it wouldn’t kill.

    Too bad Durron lifted his hand and pushed forward with the Force. Just not quickly enough. The glass blade slid through his outstretched hand, stopping at the hilt and now thoroughly buried in this palm.

    It was a satisfying sound, the little pain filled grunt he made. It would have been much more pleasurable had he fell to his knees and grovelled at her feet but she suspected in time he would do just that.

    Mara watched, fascinated, the blade coated with his blood. She smiled and then laughed but it was short lived mirth as Durron suddenly pulled the blade free, threw it aside and came stomping her way. Her precious glass blade skittered across the floor and banged against the wall, where it left a small dark red stain.

    Augmented Force speed suddenly had him hovering above her within a second.

    She felt his breath against her face as he grabbed her throat with the punctured hand, squeezing just enough to make it difficult to breathe. Rivulets of his blood ran a path along her skin, down the side of her neck, staining the collar of her suit.
    “Nothing will give me more pleasure than watching you die, Jade.” Durron breathed softly. “My face will be the last you’ll see. You have my word.”

    He left a bloody handprint on her throat when he finally turned to leave.

    As the door swished closed behind him, as he sauntered off as if nothing had happened, Mara was surprised to note that, amongst the jumble of emotions coursing through her, she realized that fear prevailed.
    The smile on her face was only for show, for the men manning the surveillance cameras. Fact was, her smile meant nothing at all.

    She knew, if she didn’t take precautions, her end would come by the hands of Kyp Durron.
    He always kept his promises.

    *

    “We have several individuals in custody.” The blue hologram flickered for a moment, distorting the image of Lieutenant Syal Antilles. Gloved hands behind her back, chin lifted just a bit, her small figure bestowed just enough authority to be taken seriously. “One in particular has caught my attention.”

    “Explain.” Captain Jagged Fel sat back and thoughtfully rubbed his chin. He turned away from the hologram for a moment, letting his eyes wander to the viewport. Beyond the thick slab of transparasteel lay the colorful orb on which a fairly large group of rebels had established a not so hidden base.

    It was the third outpost the task force had found and destroyed within the past month. Seemed the rebels were getting sloppy, which didn’t bother Fel in the slightest.

    “She claims to be a Jedi.” Antilles went on, her tone mocking. “We have yet to prove–.”

    “Report her to Master Durron.” Fel interrupted quickly. He had no patience with this Jedi nonsense. “He’ll deal with her accordingly.”

    “Yes, Sir.”

    “How many prisoners in total?”

    “Three hundred twenty one, Sir.”

    He nodded. “Have them transported to --”

    The door to his officeopened and Kyp Durron stormed through, in his wake a very flustered Ensign waving his hands frantically while literally begging the Jedi to stop.

    Captain Fel cut the connection to the planets' surface, knowing he could trust Lieutenant Antilles' handling of the situation down below. The matter at hand, it seemed, warranted his immediate attention, proven by the fire he caught behind Durron's eyes.

    And by the profusely bleeding wound in the man’s semi bandaged hand.

    “Sir!” Ensign Azon raised his voice. “I apologize. He barged in. I couldn't --”

    Captain Fel held up a hand and nodded. “Dismissed, Ensign.”

    Indignantly, Ensign Azon shot Durron a dirty look before he spun on his heel and left the office. Once the door closed behind him, Fel gestured to a vacant seat before his desk. “I find it fairly trying the way you deem it necessary to ignore all rules and regulations, Master Durron.” His voice held a hard, cold edge and anyone else would have immediately slammed their heels together and uttered a loud “Yes, Sir!” but not Master Durron.

    Of course not.

    In fact, Durron completely ignored the statement.

    “Ganner Rhysode. Where did we pick him up?” He began pacing the length of Fel's office, disregarding the invite to sit. The black cloak fastened around his shoulders flared out behind him as he walked and the light from the ceiling glow panels reflected off the silver and black cylinder of his lightsaber.

    “What happened to your hand?” Fel asked, ignoring Durron’s question.

    “Jade.”

    He sighed as Durron stood in front of the viewport, staring out to the planet below. He’d wrapped a thick white cloth around his hand but he was still bleeding through. Fel wrinkled his nose in distaste as a few drops fell to his otherwise impeccable floor. “You’re like children.” He commented quietly. “Have the Doctor check out your hand.”

    “Rhysode. Where did we pick him up?”

    “I will make it an order if I have to. Have the Doctor take a look at your hand.”

    Durron narrowed his eyes for just a moment and whatever comment had lain on the tip of his tongue, he let it go. It wasn’t wise to smart-mouth the son of the Admiral.

    “Fine.” Durron growled. “Again: where did we pick up Rhysode?”

    “A small planet in the neighboring system. According to our sources, Rhysode has intel on various rebel activists throughout this quadrant. When we make him cooperate –“

    “He’s dead.”

    Fel pursed his lips. “Quite inconvenient.”

    “I got a look into his head before he died.” Durron said, running his thumb along his chin while still staring out into the nothingness of space. “He knew about the Sword.”

    Fel joined him at the viewport, hands clasped behind his back. He took a deep breath and slowly let it out, hoping it would deal with the sudden ill feeling settling into the pit of his stomach.

    It wasn’t working.

    “Are you certain?”

    “Yes.” Durron ran his unharmed hand through his hair, turning away from the view of the planet below. “The Sword of the Jedi is a person. He said to protect her.” A frown appeared on his forehead. “I saw the woman in his memories and he said to protect her, the Sword.”

    Fel was quiet for a long moment. The fact that the Sword of the Jedi could possibly be a person had never once crossed their minds. The fact that this Sword of the Jedi could also possibly be a woman didn’t sit well with him either.

    “Do you believe this?” He asked.

    “It’s worth checking out. That’s why we need to go back.”

    But Fel shook his head. “We won’t leave here. It’ll take a while for the prisoners to be transported to the ship. We have orders to rendezvous at in Fondor in forty-eight standard hours. The Admiral is expecting you to be there.”

    Durron snorted. “The Admiral can kiss my –“

    Given that Durron was about to insult his father, Fel raised his hand for silence before Durron could end his sentence. “Need I remind you that Admiral Fel is the one paying for your little extracurricular activities? Should I also remind you that without the Admiral you’d be wasting away on a prison world?” He lowered his voice. “You owe him respect. You owe him gratitude. You owe him your life. You have your orders.

    Durron swallowed, staring back at the Captain without saying a word. It was self evident, the way the wheels turned in the Jedi’s head. Had it been a mistake allying with the Empire? Had it been a mistake to accept Admiral Fel’s help?

    He spun around, his cloak billowing behind him as he headed for the door. “I’ll take my ship and go alone.”

    “Durron –“

    “I’ll be at Fondor on time.”

    Fel nodded once. “You’d best make sure that you are.”


    @LexiLupin @Durroness @Iverna @Jade_eyes
    bellum stellarum likes this.
  14. Nyota's Heart Combos & Paragraphs Host

    Game Host
    Member Since:
    Aug 31, 2004
    star 6
    Wow! =D= =D= You write intensity and drama so well, I'm totally impressed. :cool: @};-
    Ceillean likes this.
  15. LexiLupin Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Mar 27, 2011
    star 4
    :D Kyp and Jag... my favs... :D
    I can't wait until Kyp and Mara have it out. What a great dynamic between them. That'll be a fun showdown.
    Ceillean and Jade_eyes like this.
  16. EmeraldJediFire Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Feb 23, 2012
    star 4
    I like..Kyp and Mara works because I feel they've always been polar opposites since the beginning . This is really intriguing...very seldom do i veer away from my chosen genre..but once in awhile gem's like this catch my eye.

    I wouldn't mind a tag...I'll be watching this also.
    Jade_eyes and Ceillean like this.
  17. Sticks Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jan 27, 2001
    star 4
    Consider me hooked! Please tag me in your updates. :D
    Ceillean likes this.
  18. Ceillean Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Nov 13, 2001
    star 5
    Wow. :( Took me a while to reply, huh? BUT...I have two updates nearly finished so yay.

    Thank you Nyota, for this wonderful compliment. I hope I can keep it up. :)

    Yeah, and a bi*** to write, no doubt. :p But it'll be fun. :D

    Why, thank you Emerald. That's quite the compliment. And here I went and neglected this story for months.

    I'll tag you once I get the next update finished. :)

    I shall do this. :)
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  19. Nyota's Heart Combos & Paragraphs Host

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    Aug 31, 2004
    star 6
    @Ceillean -- do you know how breathtakingly marvelously off-the-chain it is to have you call me Nyota [face_dancing] [face_dancing] [:D] (The squeeing user formerly known as Jade_eyes) LOL ^:)^
    Last edited by Nyota's Heart, Nov 26, 2013
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  20. SiouxFan Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Mar 6, 2012
    star 3
    What a delightfully convoluted story….my favorite! Another story where I actually like Kyp…who knew??? Here's hoping that you keep Mara delightfully dangerous!
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  21. Ceillean Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Nov 13, 2001
    star 5

    I take it you generally don't like Kyp? Then this is one hell of a compliment, isn't it? :D
    I also hope that I can keep Mara as evil as she is. I think I'm up to it, though. I have plans. [face_devil]

    Thanks for reading. :)
  22. Ceillean Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Nov 13, 2001
    star 5

    Well, since you changed your name I thought it would be better to use Nyota. :D But I knew it was you from the start. :D
    Nyota's Heart likes this.
  23. Ceillean Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Nov 13, 2001
    star 5
    Chapter Four

    Murninkam, Corva Sector, Outer Rim Territories



    Luke stood next to Etain’s bed and looked down at her sleeping form. Her soft snores made him smile and just for a moment he could pretend that everything was okay. But that moment passed far too quickly and he backed out of her room and quietly shut the door.

    As he did every evening at the same time, Luke shuffled into his study. It was a very small room, barely large enough for a chair and a desk but it served his purposes just fine. He sat down and touched a finger to a hidden switch underneath the desk. A small compartment pushed forward from which Luke took out a data pad. It was the only bit of technology he’d kept from his old life, the only link to modern civilization he allowed himself to have.

    It was also the only link he still had to his wife.

    Courtesy of the Empress. The self proclaimed ruler of the galaxy. A damned heartless excuse for a human being as far as Luke was concerned.

    He switched on the datapad and instantly the black screen disappeared to show a room that belonged inside a palace. Probably was the Imperial Palace but Luke couldn’t be sure. Because it was always this angle, this one shot only.

    He saw the edge of an enormous bed with red sheets and several pillows. Sometimes the color of the sheets changed, sometimes the pillows were different. The occupant was always the same. Cally sat atop the bed, her head bowed low as she paged through a book. She’d always liked to read. Luke remembered fondly when he’d taken her to the library planet Lorrd a few years ago. She’d loved every moment of it.
    The Empress granted Luke ten minutes a day. Something of an insurance policy so that, while Callista was still alive, Luke would never return to the known galaxy. That had been the deal. The majority of the Empire thought Luke had died during the war when, in fact, he’d left to protect his daughter and to keep his wife alive.

    But she was miserable. So very miserable.

    He could see it in her empty gaze.

    She’s alive. That’s all that counts.

    Throughout the years, Luke had kept telling himself this over and over again but he wasn’t so sure anymore. And with Zekk suddenly showing up, his doubts were growing. What sort of life was he offering his family? Secluded and alone?

    “I love you, Cally.” He whispered just before the screen turned black again because his ten minutes were up. Every day he endured the pain that gripped his heart and squeezed until it hurt to breathe. Every day he endured that Callista was being held by the Empress, that Etain thought her mother was dead. Every day he lived with knowing that it was his fault and his fault alone because he’d made the deal.
    He couldn’t blame Callista if she hated him.

    Sighing, Luke shut off the data pad and put it back into its compartment.

    He sat there for a very long time, elbows on his desk, head in his hands. Defeated. Again.

    Hadn’t he already been down this road before? Fatigue gnawed at him so he switched off the light and padded through the small house to his bedroom. He let himself fall onto the single mattress and as his head hit the pillow, the Force suddenly had him in a cold grip. Oh, it had been far too long since last he’d felt this sort of power. It was refreshing, invigorating. Tendrils of Force energy snaked along his skin, whisked through him and suddenly took him to a place he’d forgotten about.

    He saw Cally and her beautiful smile and lovely blue eyes.

    And she had a message.

    And this message changed everything.

    *

    But this wasn’t a dream. Dreams felt unreal, like smoke. This was a very real vision. A vision of the future and Luke didn’t like it.

    “This is what awaits you, my love.” Callista stood beside him, holding his hand. Her skin was warm, her touch felt real. But he knew it wasn’t. This was all in his mind. It didn’t matter, though. She was with him. Luke wanted to take her in his arms and squeeze and never let go but what he saw gave him pause.

    “War.” He whispered quietly.

    “On a grand scale.” Her hand slipped from his grasp as she took a few steps forward. She wore a tight fitting deep red gown with gems fastened to the hem and they glittered like crystals as the skirts passed over the bodies on the ground.

    They stood on a battle field. Disfigured bodies, twisted, dead. People wiped out by people. “This is the Empire’s doing.” Callista went on. She looked over her shoulder towards Luke. “Your Jedi.”
    My Jedi?” He echoed incredulously and he took a small step back as if she’d slapped him.

    “Well, yes. You began to train them, didn’t you? And then you left.” She wrinkled her nose a bit. “And so the Empire swept in like a savior in shining armor and gave them what they sought most. To become something more. To finally become Jedi. So yes, they are your Jedi.”

    “Jedi don’t kill.”

    “Don’t they?” Her smile made a shiver run down his back. “Then what do you make of this?” She spread her arms as if to engulf the entire battle field. And that’s when he saw the lightsaber wounds. Severed limbs, burned holes through armor, bodiless heads, destruction and carnage.

    “This future awaits you…if you do nothing.”

    Luke frowned and spun around as Callista suddenly snapped her fingers and the battlefield disappeared, replaced by white nothingness. “I don’t understand.”

    “I think you do.” A throne appeared behind her and she sat down, one leg draped across the other. She looked like a queen in her red gown. His queen. All that was missing was the crown. “Your time is up, my love.”
    “I can’t leave. Etain –“

    “She has a destiny. Just like you. Just like all of us. And you cannot run away. Eventually, destiny will find you and you’ll have to face her one way or the other. Best to face her on your terms, wouldn’t you agree?”
    “Her?”

    Callista shrugged. “Always thought of destiny as a girl.”

    Luke sighed. “What is this place?”

    “This, my love, is a choice. Right now, consider it a crossroads of sorts. Will you walk towards the battle field, towards death and destruction by doing nothing at all? Or do you choose hope? Do you become light for those who need it?”

    Nothingness spread to all sides. Wherever he turned his head, all he saw was white. So clean and innocent, so unlike what the galaxy had become.

    “Are you truly here?” Luke asked quietly. He turned towards her, momentarily taken aback by her beauty. She was a gem to behold. Her blond hair was twisted up into an elaborate style with strands framing her gorgeous face. But there was something not quite right with her eyes…they seemed empty.

    “No.” Callista stood from the throne-like chair and approached him. “I would like to be. The Force works in magical ways but it can’t teleport. Not yet anyway. I’m still with your evil twin. She has me on a short leash.”
    “How can you be here? This never worked before.“

    She touched a finger to his lips and shook her head. “Don’t ask questions that aren’t important. Right now, you have to choose.”

    “I don’t know how.”

    Callista laughed and it was the most marvelous sound he’d heard in too many ears to count. Nothingness faded, melted away into a picture of peace. It was like someone had picked up a paintbrush and had begun painting the trees first and then the people and eventually the buildings. It was a beautiful place, a quiet and tranquil place.

    His eyes caught on three young people, two men and a woman, seated underneath a tall tree. They seemed very familiar but he couldn’t quite recall their names. But he knew without a doubt that these three were very important.

    “They need you, Luke.”

    “Who are they?”

    “The future.”

    He sighed. “Do you have to be so cryptic?”

    She pursed her lips. “I’m not being cryptic.”

    “Yes. You are.”

    “No. I’m not. I’m telling you that these three people are the future. Without them, there will be no peace. Without them there is no hope. Not for you. Not for our daughter. Not for anyone. And they need you.”
    Luke rubbed his temples and closed his eyes. Long ago he’d thought he’d cast the burden aside when, in fact, he’d just made it disappear. It had always been there, waiting in the dark, lingering. And now, slowly, it returned and it settled atop his shoulders with such force that his knees started to buckle.

    “Who are they?”

    Callista clucked her tongue. “I can’t tell you that, silly man.”

    “Cally –“

    “It would ruin all the fun.”

    “Cally.”

    She chuckled quietly and took his hand into hers. She ran a finger along his knuckles. “Oh, my love. The choices of one…” She sighed and squeezed his hand. “They are the Sword of the Jedi.”

    He frowned. “It’s a myth.”

    “It isn’t.”

    Luke wanted to argue because this had to be some sort of stupid joke. Only fools believed in the Sword of the Jedi and only fools went on a quest to find it. But Callista merely shook her head. “Believe me, Luke. What I tell you is true. They need you. Find them and be their light.”

    *

    Luke woke up to a slight shaking of his arm. As he blinked his eyes open, Etain looked at him with a tiny frown on her forehead. “Are you okay?” She asked slowly. “Because you were talking in your sleep.”

    “I was?”

    She nodded. “I heard you in my room. You were pretty loud.”

    Luke sat up and rubbed his eyes. “Bad dream, is all.” Which, obviously, was a blatant lie. He felt like the worst parent in the universe because for the past years, all he’d ever done was lie to his daughter.

    “Liar.”

    Luke blinked and raised an eyebrow. But he said nothing as his beautiful little girl crossed her arms in front of his chest and stared him down. “You said Momma’s name. Over and over again. And something about going on a search. And –“ She sat down on the bed beside him. “I felt something. In the Force. It wasn’t just a dream.”

    Luke took a deep breath. It felt like just yesterday when Etain began uttering her first words and now…

    “When did you grow up so fast?”

    “What’s going on, Dad?”

    He squeezed her hand. “Sweetheart, I think it’s time to go.”


    @LexiLupin @Durroness @Iverna
    Last edited by Ceillean, Nov 28, 2013
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  24. Nyota's Heart Combos & Paragraphs Host

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    Member Since:
    Aug 31, 2004
    star 6
    Excellent =D= =D= Showing the consequences of Luke's past decision and the outcome of continuing to hide out [face_thinking] Fabulous characterizations. @};- Can totally feel that everything is on the edge of momentous changes. :cool:
    Ceillean likes this.
  25. mulberry Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Sep 20, 2009
    star 1
    This is fun! Can you please tag me for updates??
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