Before Hoc Est Bellum (Mandalorian Wars Fic)

Discussion in 'Fan Fiction- Before, Saga, and Beyond' started by Exucartus, Jan 3, 2011.

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  1. Exucartus Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Oct 22, 2008
    Chapter One: What Can You Know?

    "A Jedi seeks knowledge, because only through knowledge, can a Jedi make an informed and dispassionate decision, a rational decision. It is because of this that I say, all ignorance is evil." Master Dorak paced in front of the holodisplay, making occasional gestures towards the information displayed on the screen.

    "Just over three decades ago, one of the most promising of our number fell to the Dark Side because of his ignorance and when he fell, he nearly dragged the galaxy with him." A high resolution image of a tall man with dark hair appeared on the display. Exar Kun, late Dark Lord of the Sith and fallen Jedi. "Exar Kun was ignorant of the dark side's corruption, ignorant of the damage it would cause. He believed he could create a golden age of power and prosperity." Master Dorak shook his head sadly. "In his ignorance, he became evil; in his ignorance, he killed millions."

    Master Dorak opened his mouth to continue speaking, but then a robed figure stepped out of the darkness and in front of the holodisplay. Silhouetted by the light behind him, the figure turned to Master Dorak and bowed towards the Jedi Master.

    "Master Dorak, if you do not mind, I have a question to pose." The voice was smooth and monotone. The speaker kept the pitch and volume of his voice under constant control.

    "Of course Knight Kaviss, your contributions to these discussions are always welcome." There was a shadow of irritation through the Force, which suggested something contrary. The younger Jedi grinned.

    "Thank you Master Dorak." The Jedi Knight turned towards the class of assembled padawans, still little more than a silhouette to their eyes.

    "Master Dorak claims it's Exar Kun's ignorance that perpetuated his fall and I agree." Kaviss paused, letting his statement sink in, giving the students time to think. "However, my question is not about Exar Kun's ignorance; I'm curious as to its source. Why was Exar Kun ignorant? He would have been warned repeatedly the dark side is dangerous. Perhaps Master Dorak has the answer?"

    "I would suggest it was Exar Kun's own disregard for the tutorship of his Jedi Masters which made him ignorant," Master Dorak replied. ?You can only learn if you are willing to.?

    "You propose Exar Kun had defect in character? You argue ethical behavior comes from a virtuous character. If Exar Kun did not have a virtuous character, then he would be more susceptible to the lure of the dark side. However..." Kaviss trailed off.

    "However?" Master Dorak asked.

    "Claiming Exar Kun had a deficiency of character is an assumption. Did you know the man Master Dorak??

    "I did know him, not well, but I met him a few times. Obviously I did not know him well enough to say either way if he had a defect of character. It was only a suggestion in any case. No one can explain why Exar Kun was ignorant of the dark side's corruption." There was a hint of irritation in Dorak's voice.

    "I have an idea, if you do not mind hearing it.?

    "By all means, go ahead."

    "Thank you, Master Dorak," Kaviss said with a nod.

    Turning back to the padawans he addressed them. "I have a question for all of you; it's a yes or no question, so all you need to do is raise your hand. How many of you have broken a bone, any bone?" There was a group of raised hands among the padawans, about half the class. "Very good, now, I want someone who has never broken a bone to explain to me how it feels.? There were a number of confused mutters.

    "Knight Kaviss? I do not understand," a padawan spoke up. ?How I can I explain how a broken bone feels, without having actually broken a bone??

    ?That is an excellent question,? Kaviss replied. ?Intellectually, you are aware breaking a bone is a negative experience. You don't need to experience it to know it would be painful. You can draw a conclusion based on already established facts. However, you cannot explain how it feels, because you do not know it from first hand experience. True knowledge begins with direct experience."

    "Knight Kaviss, are you saying Exar Kun was ignorant of
  2. LaForzaViva Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Jul 6, 2008
    star 1
    This is absolutely fantastic work. I've been dying to see a well-worked piece on Revan's machinations before the Mandalorian Wars, and I think I might've found it. It's so rare to see another writer even mentions politics, not to mention even using the word epistemology.

    A few question marks popped up, I'm not sure if that was a formatting problem but I think they showed up for apostrophes sometimes. And there was one italicized bit that continued for a while, but I think you just missed a / in the tag.

    Please, please add me to your PM list so I can keep updated. I am looking forward to reading more!
  3. Exucartus Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Oct 22, 2008
    Glad to see you like it so far, and thanks for noting the formatting, I must have missed that first time around. Oh and alway nice to see another person who knows the "vocab" of philosophy.


    Chapter Two: Doubt

    "Zoom in here, on his face. Yes, yes, very good!" Zarik Charr scrambled about the system of holoprojectors, hastily giving orders to the techs working on post production clips for Coruscant's nightline news feature. "This is excellent; we are the only ones with an actual clip of his face!" Zarik clapped his pudgy hands in glee. Coru-Newscorp's ratings would skyrocket on the holonet after this footage was broadcast. "Make sure you get his eyes! His eyes! And blast it, can't we get the sound quality any better? I want to hear what they are saying!"

    "We didn't get permission for this; the Senator could sue us for that," one of the techs said doubtfully.

    "Did I ask for your opinion?" Zarik snapped. "Get on with it!"

    "I did rather well didn't I?" Charlettas Korr smiled and tugged at her red dress, curling her full lips into a sneer. ?He looked at me once and I thought for sure he was about to walk over and ask what I was doing, damn Jedi and their senses, but he didn't. He talked with her until the early hours of the morning and never looked over at me again."

    "You did marvelous my dear, absolutely marvelous. As soon as the techs are finished, we should have this on the nightline news." Zarik was rubbing his hands together in anticipation. None of the other news agencies had managed to get a look at the Revanchist's face; the man was notoriously private, but Zarik's genius had landed him the prize that all the major channels had been desperately after.

    The Revanchist sat at a table with the well known Senator from Antara, eating and conversing. In Zarik's mind, it was a curious occurrence. Politics being such a money maker, he was aware of the political associations of the Revanchist and Antara's Senator. Why would two political enemies be engaged in such a private discourse? A secret relationship? Hidden alliances? Zarik had no idea, but that hardly mattered because he didn't have to know. All he had to do was make light of it on the holonet and the millions of viewers would do the rest for him.

    Rumor would give birth to dozens of children and those children would give birth to their own children and so on, until the original story had been mangled and twisted into utter nonsense.

    And Zarik was going to make a fortune off of it all.


    Kaviss was not used to failure; he was used to success. Tonight was a failure. Keida had not wavered in her opinion, fear of her constitutes made sure of that. If Kaviss had been feeling vindictive he supposed he could of accused her of being weak in the face of an impending crisis, but Kaviss found it impossible to hold any negative feelings towards the woman. Keida had that particular power that even years of Jedi control couldn't ignore.

    At least the night had not been a complete failure. They had another dinner planned next standard week. Kaviss was fine with that.

    Alone in the temple's practice yard, he was standing still in the center of a large training mat. It was in the early morning, but Kaviss had needed some way to work his frustrations out and slicing up saber training droids was always a good way to do so.

    Snap hiss.

    A blue blade flashed out suddenly, stabbing towards Kaviss as one of the training droids jumped o/>/>
  4. Shillani Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Jan 9, 2011
    star 1
    Nice work writing Revan! You managed to give him a distinct personality, yet at the same time one that can be easily fitted to the Revan depicted in the KotOR games and comics. Nifty lightsaber he has, by the way. I can see Kaviss is going to have fun building HK-47 later on, if your story goes that far.

    I'm assuming that the impending visit to Cathar in this story is a later one than is featured in the KotOR comics, unless you had Kaviss don his mask earlier here.

    Anyways, good story, and please add me to the PM list if you're keeping one.
  5. SoA Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Apr 2, 2008
    star 3
    Wow! This really is amazing. You've developed Revan so well already, and very believably. The intreque you've woven into this story already is fantasic. Add me to your PM list too, please.
  6. LaForzaViva Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Jul 6, 2008
    star 1
    Excellent update. I like the bit with the media on Coruscant, always digging for controversies just like our own.

    And the faith/intellect philosophical discussion was quite enjoyable. The paradoxes are many and I enjoy seeing a doubting Revanchist; surely his 'turn' to the dark side, in my mind, was less a consequence of his born nature and more of his search for knowledge and how best to use it. Perhaps that's where you're taking this Revanchist, perhaps not, but I'm going to enjoy the ride. Until the next!
  7. Exucartus Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Oct 22, 2008
    Chapter Three: Rules of War

    Thousands of ships littered the space above Dxun, massive monoliths of durasteel and millions of hardened warriors. They glistened in the light of Onderon's sun, the photons reflecting off the layers of armor, scattering through the vacuum. There was no other fleet like it in the entire galaxy, nothing so grand, so dignified in purpose. It was life and it was glory.

    Moreover, history would remember it as the creation, the life, of Mandalore the Ultimate, the man that would bring the Republic to its knees. This was his glory, his immortality. The weakling Republic did not understand. They did not understand war, not as Mandalore did. He knew war, he was war. He was a god, a titan, a king, a force of nature. He was all these things, but he was missing the most important thing of all.

    A challenge.

    The Republic had proven no challenge to his tactics or his plans. His men easily crushed all resistance. How was a god expected to prove his worth against mere mortals? The Republic shied away from war, saw it as abhorrent, crippled by the weakling morality of the nerf herd.

    Mandalore would liberate them through the fire of the turbolaser cannon, the smoldering heat of the nuclear warhead and the unflinching determination of his warriors.

    "If only they were worthy," a whisper through his helmet, spoken to his most trusted officer, Cassius Fett.

    "Drive them into a corner and perhaps they will be. Kill their civilians, rape their worlds, spill the blood of billions and watch the galaxy tremble. Then, perhaps, they shall be worthy." Cassius leveled each word like a blaster bolt; his tone never changed but his tone never had to change. His words were always explosive bursts of meaning. Cassius spoke the truth as he saw it and let others form their own conclusions. Mandalore admired that in an officer. If one could not understand, then that was their failing.

    "If there is anything left after the fires we will unleash, then perhaps they will fight back with worth. They will lose, like a caged kath hound that fights till the end, but at least they might provide us with some sport."

    "One can only hope." Cassius didn't sound very hopeful, not that anyone but Mandalore would have noticed.

    "Mandalore does not hope, I know." He chuckled and turned his back from the bridge viewscreen. Behind him on the holoprojector was a complex three-dimensional image of Republic space. "Tell me Cassius, of what do you think of my plan?" He motioned towards the holoprojector as it began to flash lines of attack into Republic space, lines of attack that Mandalore had developed.

    "It is a bold maneuver, striking so far into their space, so fast." Cassius pointed a finger. "I do appreciate the concept of continuing three lanes of attack and the converging at the Mid Rim; however, your strategy hinges on the Republic's inability to create a cohesive defense."

    "You believe they will? They are disorganized, a mess of system militias under the command of a council of flag officers." Mandalore barked a laugh. "Who ever heard of such nonsense?"

    "Only a fool develops a strategy that hinges on the folly of his enemies." No one could ever claim Cassius was not blunt. "Your strategy is dangerous and could become Pyhrric if the Republic mounts a successful counter offensive on even one of the invasion corridors."

    "And if they are unable to?"

    "Then you will open a direct line to the core worlds."

    "And force the hound into a corner." Mandalore steepled his gauntleted hands in anticipation. He had planned his invasion, this war, on the keystone that the Republic's response would not be cohesive. There was an irony in this. The Republic had the men and the ships to repel the Mandalorians. Their numbers dwarfed those of Mandalore's by many magnitudes; however, numbers were useless if not properly used.

    "Are you sure of your objectives?" Cassius asked. "To drive them into a corner, or defeat them quickly?"

    "Both can be accomplished at the same time without a division of goals."

    The first rule of war, know your objectives. Man
  8. SoA Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Apr 2, 2008
    star 3
    Splendid! You write the Mandalorians so well. I'm totally looking forward to more of this, more of Revan, more of Mandalore, more of Canderous, and just more of this story in general.
  9. LaForzaViva Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Jul 6, 2008
    star 1
    Great update; it's pretty clear the delineation between how the Mandalorians think about war and how your Revan does. Serroco's a pretty big deal, I'm going to love seeing how you handle it!
  10. Exucartus Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Oct 22, 2008
    Whoa... I'm like gone for months and come back to discover I was in the Master Nomination List (I don't even know what that is) for Before the Saga Short Story awards. Sorry for the lack of updates, I actually have a ton of material sitting on my computer, I just haven't cleaned up for posting yet. I should have chapter four within say... two weeks?
  11. Exucartus Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Oct 22, 2008
    Chapter Four: Batlle of Serroco
    "Do you really think this will work?" Lieutenant Carth Onasi asked his commander and mentor, Admiral Saul Karath.

    "Maybe, maybe not," Karath grunted. He was in one of his thinking poses, rubbing the scrub at his chin.

    "You don't sound very hopeful." Carth pulled at the collar of his orange flight jacket. The damn thing could get itchy as hell sometimes.

    "This is war, hope is for fools. The only thing that matters in war is strategy and tactics. Hope is good only as a source of morale for the noncoms and enlisted men."

    The two of them were speaking in low tones on the bridge of the Swiftsure, Karath's command ship, a massive three kilometer wide Inexpugnable class capital ship. In orbit over the blue and green ball that was Serroco, it drifted in loose formation with the rest of the fleet. Bridge crew moved about from console to console, checking systems and preparing to jump into hyperspace at a moment's notice. They kept a wide berth around Admiral Karath. Everyone could tell he was in a foul mood.

    "Officers need morale too," Carth muttered under his breath.

    "They do, but the enlisted men cannot know that. In our eyes, victory must always be assured. Officers are officers because they realize that there is nothing about war being hopeful about. Morale is for the lower ranks, the men not trained to think, but to obey. You and I, we're officers; we see the risks, know the costs. An officer has no room for doubts or to worry over his own morale. He may do so in private, but never in front of the men."

    "Yes sir," Carth said, still worried. Morale was horrible and with the Republic becoming humiliated at every turn, it was only getting worse. The men needed a victory, something to show them victory was even possible.

    "This wouldn't have happened if the Senate was unified in its actions."

    "Sir?" Carth blinked at the sudden change in topic.

    "The Senate; they are the reason we have done so poorly. They pressure the admirals on Coruscant to support some world or another, stretching our lines thin and allowing the Mandalorians free reign in our space." He slammed a fist into his palm. "They place domestic priority over military concerns. Idiots! This is a war and wars are not fought by committee, they are fought by a chain of command using sound strategy and tactics." He began to pace along the bridge, drawing the attention of the other bridge crew. "How am I expected to fight like this?"

    "You did manage to convince them to set up a fleet here," Carth offered.

    "A surprise to be sure," Karath said, "no one cares about Serroco, but when I pitched the idea to the Joint Chiefs as a way to draw Mandalore in and crush him while protecting several key worlds at the same time... they were more than happy to give me the command." He chuckled. "I made sure to list Antara and a few other important names in my list, even though Antara is too deep into the Mid Rim for Mandalore to strike."

    "Antara is one of the leading systems of the Independence Party, correct?" Carth only had a vague notion of politics. Telos was an important world, but it was hardly a political heavyweight and even if it was, no one was going to tell a junior officer anything.

    "Antara is a thorn in the side of any competent general. She and Corellia possess considerable defence fleets and control the actions of systems with fleets that could relieve us on key fronts, but that would require their defence fleets to come under the direct command of the Joint Chiefs, which they won't do."

    Carth frowned. "But why not simply make a compromise? Have their fleets under the control of their respective military officers and simply have them work with the Joint Chiefs."

    "Because this is a war; the Joint Chiefs want complete control over all military assets, as it should be. The Independence Party refuses to go along with the idea and they control the Senate right now. The GDP is struggling to gain support among the undecided blocks and gain a majority to force the Chancellor to declare a State of Emergency, which would give />
  12. Exucartus Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Oct 22, 2008
    Chapter Five: Terrible, Horrible Lies


    "This is a stupid idea," Alek was saying as Kaviss paced up the marble steps. Just ahead of him the big glassy doors of the Coru-NewsCorp's main headquarters rose up several meters high. Tiny, when compared to the glittering building they opened up to. "The council is going to have a fit if you do this." Alek was hastily following behind, his long legs easily making up for Kaviss' rapid stride. "Why do you think Keida doesn't fear retribution? Because you are a Jedi and Jedi don't act like children."

    "I'm in a childlike mood, deal with it." Kaviss replied, reaching the doors. They slid open for him, letting the king through. Kaviss was certainly emitting enough righteous anger at that moment to feel like a king in Alek's senses.

    "Deal with it?" Alek swept in front of him, robes billowing, his massive frame filling up Kaviss' view.
    "Is that your best answer? Surely, you can do better than that!"

    "You heard it, I said it." Kaviss sidestepped him and walked up to the secretary staring at the two Jedi with an apprehensive expression. "Ma'am, what is the name of your boss?"

    "Kaviss this is stupid!" Alek was practically shouting into Kaviss' ears.

    "Zarik Charr is the head of Coru-NewsCorp. Um, if you like I can set up an appointment for you to speak with?"

    "?I want to speak with him, now," Kaviss said, leaning across the counter. "Trust me; he'll want to speak to me."

    "I am sorry, but I cannot just allow you to enter without an appointment." The receptionist was beginning to look flustered.

    "Oh leave the poor woman alone, Kaviss." Alek protested.

    "Ma'am, do you know who I am?" Kaviss asked. She nodded silently, of course she did. Everyone knew him now. "That's good, because then you will realize how much your boss would love, a live, one on one exclusive interview with me."

    "Really? Kaviss you can't be serious."

    "Oh I am serious." Kaviss whirled on his friend. "This is politics Alek and politics is composed of stupidity. Since I've been drawn into the game, I'm going to fight back and I'm going to win."

    "Win at what? What is it you are trying to do?"

    "Gain the political backing I need, what else?" Kaviss turned back to the receptionist. "Don't you have something to do?" She blinked and then shook her head, looking down to the com link on her desk.

    "Political backing?" Alek threw up his arms. "You call this gaining political backing? You're ridiculous."

    "Trust me Alek, I know exactly what I am doing," Kaviss replied. "Keida refused to even speak to me; she left not a day ago and fled back to Antara, no doubt to avoid me. This mess made us miss our trip to Cathar and now my public image is suffering blow after blow."

    "Your public image?" Alek was shocked. "This is why you're acting like a spoiled child? To protect your public image?"

    "Nope." Kaviss replied with a grin. "It is called blackmail." He turned back to the receptionist. "Well?" She stopped talking into her small comm unit and looked up at the Jedi.

    "CEO Charr will be more than happy to see you." She sounded surprised. Alek couldn't blame her; he had the feeling getting an appointment with a CEO was one of those things that took months.

    "Excellent!" Kaviss replied. "Ma'am, you have been most helpful." He looked around. "Do you think you could direct us to the elevator?"

    "Oh, of course, it's just that way, down the hall." She pointed a finger down one of the halls on the left where rows of elevators lined the walls.

    "Thank you ma'am." Kaviss said with a brilliant smile. Wonder of wonders, the receptionist actually blushed! "Come on Alek; let's have a chat with Mr. Charr of Coru-NewsCorp."


    "An interview?" The fat man was practically jumping out of his chair. Alek found him to be as repulsive as he had ever seen someone, and he had seen a lot of repulsive people.

    The fat man's office was a grandiose thing of ugly replicas of ugly artwork. They littered the shelves next the room's only window, overlooking the equally ugly Coruscant skyline. Alek hated Coruscant, a big artificial dead rock orbit/>/>
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