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Star Wars CLOSED A Star Wars Story: Between Epitaphs

Discussion in 'Role Playing Forum' started by Sinrebirth , Apr 2, 2019.

  1. Mitth_Fisto

    Mitth_Fisto Force Ghost star 6

    Registered:
    Sep 29, 2005
    IC: Dunkeel
    The Clock-Temple


    Having taken his stuff back to his quarters he had played with the new things he had been given. Honestly a weapon should not be played with but Fang practically begged to be. He would need a new lamp, blanket, and a patch to repair the hole in the floor, but he was getting better. Albeit when it came to redesigning the casing of Fang he had strong pulls. There was power in a name and they had agreed on one for both of them, it was time it began to resemble it's name and they began to conform to each other. . .that or he would need to start living in a cave outside of the city to avoid the repair costs. The slim and mildly corrugated grip that The Master used was well and good for a human hand, but for his own it felt slick and clumsy. Something his room attested to right now.

    Drawing up plans hadn't taken long, The Masters simplifications and then material supply had altered things. A little less here, saw a part that just spoke to him and got added to the pile. He left on a day trip returned with proper end cap. Once it was all said and done he found that pieces seemed to flow together quickly, whether it was the hours and hours of prep or the Force he didn't know. Then again when he finally sat there looking down onto the polished stone table at Fang sitting there properly adorned, he looked up and noted the time had slipped several hours. It was the focusing of the lens all over again!

    [​IMG]

    Still, it was finally done, the days had been well spent and now he could focus on that other gift and maybe check on the others as well. See them and share his progress and see if he could aid their own or simply rejoice in work done. He didn't really know most of them that well, even the shadow. A situation he needed to remedy.

    Taking Fang firmly in hand he stood and headed to first show what he done to The Master before he went to seek out the others.

    TAG: @Sinrebirth , : @QueenSabe7, @Jerjerrod-Lennox, @Kev-Mas_Colcha, @HanSolo29
     
  2. Jerjerrod-Lennox

    Jerjerrod-Lennox Jedi Grand Master star 7

    Registered:
    Mar 9, 2005
    IC: Vydra Delomeux
    Location: The Clock Temple, Nouane


    "Well said, Protectors." He waved them off. “Your third lesson, perhaps your penultimate one, will be in two weeks. I have... errands to run, and they will come to an end soon enough."

    "Another aside for the weeks of gap," he suddenly perked up. "Beyond the whole 'find your shell' idea, because that is important." He pointed at them, brandishing his gloved finger as if a weapon.

    “Your path will be determined soon. Your Truth will be spoken, and when it is, everything changes. You must accept that. You must embrace that." His voice dipped, softly. "Please, make sure that you reconcile; that you reunite."


    Vydra could sense that he was speaking to him for the second part, that he reunite back with his family and spend time with them before he was whisked away on Protector business. It seemed so long ago even though it was only months since Joren recruited him for the Master. At the time he was just a lowly librarian, enjoying his job and adding a bit of flair in. But he wanted more and the Force seemed to be directing him towards knowledge and the Master himself. He owed Joren for bringing him into the Masters domain.

    His months of seclusion had probably worried his sister at least, perhaps his mother too. His father however not so much as they had both left on not so good terms. Luckily he also didn't have too much to pack either.

    He also noted that the dark haired woman had decided to leg it early, Vydra wondered where she was of to in a hurry.

    "If you have anything to finish up, or resolve, I would recommend you do your best. Some of you have set events into motion today, some of you will head back to the life you have anyway, without a care in the world. Think about what you want, and accept what you have not."

    “I will not be intervening for these two weeks. You need to be yourselves, and speak to those you love, to those you fear, to those you hate. We Protect the Light, but the past will haunt you going forward.”

    The Force seemed to be quiet to Vydra at this moment but there was a sense that something big was potentially about to happen. There was no clue to what it was though but he knew that the Master would choose when to reveal all in his own time and probably in his own quirky way.

    His family was all he had left before he continued his journey with the Protectors. The Master was right in a sense. If he didn't try to reconnect with his family now it would haunt him later and possibly distract him.

    Which wouldn't help.

    Time to get going.

    Later….



    Walking through the streets of Nouane seemed utterly alien to him right now.

    He had packed everything apart from the photo of his family. He had left that behind in his room at the Clock Temple as he knew he would be back again soon. And he wanted to keep it there as it would serve as a reminder of what he would be leaving behind and protecting.

    He hoped it would not be a regretful reminder.

    He had also decided to take the Holocron he had been given him, after all it was his to keep for now, and there was no point leaving it behind after all if any one was curious they could decide to use it.

    And then everything would be undone.

    It was nice feeling the fresh air on his skin to breathe in the sights and smells to hear the sounds of everyday life. The Force was singing with all the vibrancy that was going on. And if there was any darkness about, Vydra had to be mindful, after all the darkness could be directed at him.

    He had decided to put the Forcessber in his bag as he felt a little conspicuous with it attached to his hilt. The old him would have been shouting he was a Protector from the rooftops, brandishing the saber with pride.

    Amazing what tutelage with the Master did to a man as well as looking inside himself and seeing that who he was would not help him become a Protector.

    And so the flamboyance and arrogance had gone. And his family would see the difference.

    Vydra was at present making his way through the northern district where the religious sects, cults and others had laid down their roots and where the Clock Temple resided. It felt more like home than his own home.

    Vydra's family home and library were in the western district of the city to the north where the universities were situated. Most of the population were in the western district which was where most of the employment opportunities were, mainly in the factories and sciences but also in the schools and universities.

    His father disliked whom he called "Northerners" which was unfortunately one of the reasons why Vydra's relationship with his father was fraught. His father was frightened of him becoming one.

    Vydra decided to motor on towards the western section even though he would have liked to pop into the centre of the city just to take a peek and see if the market was on which was the biggest event around. The days when he was sent there either to get food, items they may need around the house or bits they needed in the library itself whether it was maintaining the the building or restoring the books.

    A shame.

    It would have been a good test of his new Force abilities, to see what he could feel and sense the world around him. With a lot of people about it could be overwhelming so Vydra had decided against it.

    The library was close to Nouane City University, Joren’s alma mater. Vydra had to smile at the memory of him being told he could go to the Clock Temple to be trained by the Master thanks to Joren’s recommendation. It seemed strange that a lowly librarian could ascent to become a Protector as well as a well known HoloNet star?

    The Delomeux family were not the richest in the district but they made enough money to get by and it was not often you could say that you were regularly visited by a HoloNet star. Vydra’s sister was absolutely nuts about Joren and could not suppress her excitement whenever he came to visit. However Vydra made sure to use his usual flair and style to make sure that Joren enjoyed his time in the library and most of all to find what he was looking for.

    Being so close to the university was also quite handy for the students to visit and the Delomeux family library had a good reputation for having most not all of the books that students needed for their studies but they also had a reputation for restoring some of the old classic books to their former glory. Vydra knew that there was some materials down there which he could use to customise his Forcesaber’s shell.

    That would probably come before the end of this little break. Well if you called it a break….

    He finally arrived at the library, took a deep breath and went in.

    The rich smell of books assaulted his nostrils and it was one smell he definitely missed, the books drawing him in to their knowledge and mystery within. It was that thirst for knowledge and with a little help for the Force that drew him to wanting to join the Protectors in the first place.

    As a young boy he loved to read, and his parents encouraged him to read as much as he could. As a librarian you had to have quite a bit of knowledge regarding the different subjects books covered so that if someone asks for something specific you would know what books to recommend and where in the library those books were.

    Having the Force was sort of an advantage in this respect that it could direct him to the correct stock. But at the time he just attributed it to luck.

    The Force also drew him to talk to different philosophers and scholars about the galaxy in general and even about the Force itself if anybody knew about it and wanted to share. Being on a planet that was quite isolationist in nature was a problem or for someone like Vydra who was always asking questions (this still hadn't changed from when he was younger) and wanted to know more about anything and everything.

    He was surprised with all the knowledge he had asked about and received that his brain had not exploded.

    As he moved through the stacks he spotted his twenty six year old sister Venezia helping someone out looking as beautiful as ever. She had the same blonde hair as him but she definitely looked like their mother. She was also not as interested in learning as much knowledge as he was but she got by. She was also more artistic than he was and usually plied her talents into the restoration of the books. She was also more quiet and reserved than he was, sort of what he was turning into now.

    Usually he would sweep into the library, cape flowing behind him and with a grin on his face that would melt a thousand ladies hearts like he owned the whole library.

    Now he was dressed more simply and he decided it was time for a surprise. Out of the three his sister was a little less disappointed than the others but that still didn't mean that she didn't give him a roasting for not telling them his plans before he upped and left.

    She was up a ladder putting a book back after she had served the person she was dealing with and obviously spotted a shadow as she responded lightly with “Can I help you?”

    Vydra folded his arms and casually lent on the stack with a small smile “I was looking for a woman who kind of looks like my sister. Quite quiet, drools over Joren Graal like crazy and can be annoying sometimes”

    She quickly scrambled back down the ladder and turned around around a look of shock on her face “Vydra?” she was looking at him like he had just come back from the dead.

    “Hey Ven”

    He kept the smile on his face although he could sense through the Force that she was definitely shocked mixed with a bit of surprise and happiness as well as the disappointment still lurking underneath. He tried not to show on his face that he was reading her feelings.

    Venezia whom he nicknamed Ven for short immediately enveloped him in a big hug with a broad smile on her face. “I was worried sick!. We hadn't heard from you for months, mum was doing her nut, she was wondering whether something had happened to you or worse that you were dead” she lent back her arms still around him “I was just hoping something hadn’t landed on you or you stabbed yourself”

    “Ha ha very funny” he said still smiling but shaking his head “I’d better not surprise Mum and Dad, least they end up having a heart attack, especially Mum. And I didn't really want to announce myself to the whole library like I used to”

    Venezia tipped her head to the side removing her arms around him and put her hands on her hips a confused yet teasing look on her face “Who are you and what have you done with my brother?” she chuckled “You would have blown open the doors and announced yourself like the savior of Nouane had arrived”

    Vydra’s face turned serious “I’ve changed Ven, i’m not the man I used to be. There are things I have learnt, things that I have seen, revelations that I have been shown that have changed me. And i’m afraid this is only a fleeting visit, I need to head back to the Clock Temple in two weeks. And I may not return here for some time, or I may never return depending on what happens”

    Venezia looked concerned “Please don’t say that, we've missed you enough already.” she did smile slightly though “So you’ve done it then, you’ve become a Protector?”

    “I have” he said his face turning serious “It’s hard to explain it all, and maybe you won’t believe it, but I have become whom I set out to be, a Protector of the Light”

    Venezia hugged him again “I’m proud of you big brother. I wished like Mum and Dad that you would stay a librarian, but I guess you’ve finally reached your true calling” she released him again “Come on, let’s find Mum. Dad’s down in the archives, he’ll be a while”

    Venezia guided him by placing his hand on his shoulder and walking him towards the back of the library where the manager’s office was situated. Their mother and father took turns in the office and luckily today it was their mother. He would rather be back in the safety of their home to have a rather frank discussion.

    Venezia went first into the office peering around the corner of the doorframe “Hey Mum, I found someone wandering through the library you haven't seen in a while”

    “If it’s that student who I kicked out for never returning the books then tell him I will be having words with him”

    Vydra came through the door with a slight smile one his face “Sadly not Mother, it’s just me”

    Sophie Delomeux looked up from her paperwork, a shocked look on her face which then turned into a smile. The disappointment was still tangible in the Force but his mother was willing to shove it to the back of her mind in seeing her eldest child return. She swept around the desk and enveloped him in a big hug much like Venezia did.

    The joy then faded as she gave him an angry look “No call? No note? I have been worried sick about you and so has your sister. And now you are back without so much as a call beforehand or even an apology?”

    Vydra sighed, he was expecting this “I thought it best to come in discreetly not like I used to. Besides I didn't want to make a scene in public, especially with what happened before I left” which was a big argument between himself and his parents, more with his father than his mother and he really did not want that going on again in front of the students.

    His mother folded her arms across her chest “You were never afraid of that before you left, i’m surprised you didn't waltz in bellowing from the rooftop that you were back”

    Vydra sighed again “As I said to Ven, I've changed. The old me, the one that was arrogant, augmentative and flamboyant is gone. I’ve seen what was inside me, my true self and thanks to the Master and the Force I've changed myself for the better” he smirked “I’m still asking a hell of a lot of questions though”

    His mother's expression softened slightly “In that I have no doubt” she looked him up and down, taking in his simple attire “ill you be staying long?”

    He was expecting this as well “Sadly not, this is a two week holiday of sorts. I thought I would come back and see you guys, try to patch up after what happened last time. I don’t want to go back to the Protectors knowing that I had regrets from this visit.” he looked sad his eyes focusing on his mother's face “I know you and Dad and even Venezia have not seen eye to eye with me about many things. But I don’t want to leave here knowing that you and Dad still are disappointed in me and the choices i’ve made and what I've become”

    Vydra became solemn “I want to try and make things a little better. Because this may be the last time I see you all. Before I complete my studies and perhaps even head out into the wider galaxy”

    Sadness poured off his mother like water rushing down towards him and he could feel it in the Force roll over him like a wave. He felt sad too that he was upsetting his mother, but after all that had been revealed to him he had to make sure he left on a good note, and in order for him to do what had to be done.

    His mother sighed and then gave a slight smile “Well then, if this is t be your last visit, let’s make sure we make well worthwhile. Why don’t you pop home and relax for a bit. I’m sure me and Venezia can cook up something for your welcome home party”

    Vydra then stepped forward and gave his mother a hug “Thanks Mum.” he stepped back and then headed out of the library back to the Delomeux family home. It wasn't too far away and luckily Vydra still kept his set of keys to enter.

    It still looked the same, pictures on the walls, mostly from his mother and Venezia’s taste in art but there were family photos scattered about. Pics of when he was young, when he and Venezia left school, pictures of them working in the library. There was a large bookshelf in the dining room filled with old family favourites and well as some books regarding Nouana itself and some books Vydra managed to sneak home regarding the galaxy and the Force. His father hated them but Vydra had won that particular argument about keeping them.

    It felt homely and full of the love that a family being together could bring. He headed upstairs to his room. It still looked the same, and his mother had kept it clean and tidy, making sure it was ready for his return. When he was younger he was more messy leaving mostly books and papers everywhere but he did make sure his clothes looked spotless and neatly pressed. He was more vain before he left for the Protectors, endlessly fussing over his appearance and how his clothes looked.

    What a difference a few months makes.

    His books were all stacked neatly, some of his favourite books he had gathered and managed to sneak home without anyone noticing. It was the Force that drew him to these particular books, tales of the Protectors, what they did and what had happened during the Battle of the Temporal Planes. It was what he wanted to be what he aspired to be. He knew the Force was pulling him in that direction and it was difficult to explain to your parents and your sister that some mystic force was pulling you away from becoming a librarian to potentially becoming a philosopher and warrior.

    He unpacked his bag, pulling out the Holocron and Forcesaber and set them at the end of his bed before sitting on the bed himself, crossing his legs and then slowing his breathing down to meditate. If there was one thing both a warrior and philosopher did was to take time out to calm one's mind. He could feel the Force flowing around him both light and darkness. The dark was temptation itself but in times like this Vydra could calm himself and sort his emotions out to concentrate and to feel the light penetrating his body, feeling it cleanse and heal.

    With the revelations that had been revealed regarding his Truth and all that he and the Master had achieved he had to make sure his mind was clear and focused otherwise it would not be only his family he was losing. The Holocron in front of him was tempting him to touch it again but he decided not to. Once was enough for now and it would be safer to do so within the confines of the Temple itself. However it was giving him something to focus on in his meditations.

    His Forcesaber was a symbol of what he had achieved in becoming a Protector. It’s green blade would be a beacon of hope in the darkness, a weapon to be used in self defense only in his mind. He was first and foremost a mediator, to exhaust every avenue to keep the peace and to only use the weapon as a last resort. His desire to question everything would ensure that he could learn all he could about the Force and everything that it contained.

    He now had to make the shell his own, there would probably some materials in the library and at home he could use. He wanted to keep it basic, nothing too showy.

    It felt like minutes to him but in reality he had been meditating for hours. He had only realised when his mother called him down for dinner.

    As usual when entertaining his mother and sister had pulled the stops out in providing a feast. Vydra was used to more modest meals at the Temple but if there was one thing you definitely missed if you ever moved out it was your mother's cooking.

    It was then that his father entered the room. And the atmosphere got distinctly chillier. Pierre Delomeux had definitely arrived. He didn't say anything at all to Vydra, just gave him a look that said “So you’re here”

    They sat down and began to eat, Venezia providing most of the conversation, especially regarding Joren Graal and whether he had traveled with him at any time or whether he was going to pop back into the library at some point. Vydra knew she had a crush on him and many times he had to point out he was married, but it didn't stop her and his legion of fans from dreaming.

    His mother eventually joined in, asking him if he was being treated well, whether he was getting fed properly, whether he was comfortable and hopefully that he hadn't gotten into many fights which he notorious for in school usually for making an arrogant comment. She was asking all the questions any concerned mother would, and as always the answer was exasperated “Yes Mum” or “No Mum”. Venezia was shaking her head and smiling, now thai was the brother she was used to.

    His father however had said nothing, and was trying hard not look Vydra at all in the eye. He could feel in the Force the disappointment and the anger there but also was there a hint of sorrow there? Vydra concluded that his father had been afraid of losing his son to the mystics and it seemed his theory had been proven correct.

    It was time to address the elephant in the room.

    “It seems I need address the issues that has been hanging over our heads for a while now” Vydra said, focusing his eyes on each member of his family, still no response from his father “ I know you had high hopes for me becoming a librarian, taking over the business when you are both gone, maybe even me and Ven running it together. But the Force showed me a different path, a path that you had never ever thought I would take, considering what I was like before I left to join the Protectors”

    “I know that you don’t believe in the Force that you think it is just some mumbo jumbo that someone had made up and has taken me away from you” his father snorted at that, Vydra ignored it “But the Force is real. It has helped me over the years and I didn't know it. The knowledge I have gathered and the things I have witnessed, what I can do, what I can feel. It is all real”

    “The Protectors have shown me what could come to pass, what could happen in the future if I don’t take my Protector role seriously. It’s not just you that will be affected, it’s everyone.” now his father was shaking his head “You may think i’m starting to sound like i’ve just come out of a loony bin. But I tell you this now, the threat is real. And if I don’t stop it no-one will. I could lose everything and I don’t want that”

    His father finally spoke up “So this is what those mystics put in your head. My son has turned into one of the people I worry are just crazies, spouting their religion and ideas around poisoning others. This “Force” you mentioned, this is some mumbo jumbo that has been poured into your head in order to make you these Protectors servants. Why couldn't you just stay at home?”

    Vydra was trying hard to ignore the emotions pouring off his father but it was difficult as it was rather overwhelming. His father was mostly quiet and only raised his voice whenever someone got into trouble which was mostly him. He was only strict on some things, you had to be back home by a certain time if you were out as usually you had work or school in the morning, at the weekend he was slightly more relaxed and he definitely did not like anybody mentioning anything regarding religious cults or the Northern district in general.

    Other than that he mostly kept to himself but always found time to spend with the family even though they mostly worked hours at the library. Being a family unit that worked together helped and he was always willing to help anyone. But the Northerners he was always wary about and it seemed his fears were now justified.

    Vydra tried to stay calm “Because that was not my destiny. Sadly I don’t think librarian is my calling anymore. You know I would have been unhappy just doing this job for my entire life, I wanted to do something more, see the galaxy, protect those I love, not just spend my days stacking books and doing the same things again and again and again.”

    He shook his head “I needed a different path, something that whetted my appetite for finding knowledge and using it to do good in this world, actually not just this world, the galaxy. Joren helped me see the light and the Master has just nurtured it. And from what I have found out we could all be in danger, not just Nouane but the entire galaxy. And not even I could see this coming.”

    “So you have turned spokesperson for these Protectors” his father said his expression still stone cold “That this Force has shown you everything, that you have become a fortune teller.”

    His father was still not getting it. Talking to him at the moment was like talking to a brick wall. Vydra knew he his father had concerns about him joining the Protectors but he didn't realise they ran so deep. Vydra had to remain calm, to think dark thoughts would only make the situation worse and cause him to do something rash.

    Vydra shook his head “Hardly” he responded “You need to understand though, the Force can show me things, things that could change the future, affect the past and can relate to the present.” with his hand he gestured, concentrated and lifted up his plate as if to show what he could do “ The Force is everything, and everything is the Force. This not just some power I inherited or was chosen to inherit, it is a responsibility to make sure that this power is used for good, not evil” his sister looked impressed, his mother less so but she had a small look of wonder in her eyes, his father though still looked stone faced. Vydra gently moved the plate back down onto the table.

    “This is my job now, whether you like it or not. And I will do this job to the best of my ability. For you and everyone, I will do this or fall”

    His father shook his head again “”It seems I was right all along, i’ve lost my son to those religious crazies. Why should you take on a problem that is not yours to solve?” and with that he scraped back his chair and walked out of the room his mother following quickly behind, hopefully to try and defuse the situation before it was blown out of control.

    Venezia stayed behind immediately moving to pat Vydra on the shoulder “Hey, I may not have liked your decision at first, but I can understand why you did it. What you can do is impressive i’ll give you that. Dad just needs a talking to, that’s all. Hopefully before you go back he’ll come around. I think he will regret you leaving on a bad note, especially if you get hurt out there” she turned solemn “He does have a point you know, why are you getting involved in something that is not our problem?”

    Vydra stared directly into his sisters face “Because I don’t want to lose my family, you are all I have. And I want to do something that can protect you all when the times comes. We are isolationist and that is the problem. What happens when a threat comes? What happens when something happens that we cannot control here? We will be unprepared and it will be up to the Protectors to make sure that the darkness does not take over, that we can protect not just our family and friends but those who need it most. Dad may not think that something bad will happen to Nouana, but I can feel something coming. I don’t know if it’s bad or not, but i could mean disaster”

    Venezia patted his shoulder again “You thinking of going back?”

    Vyra shrugged “Maybe, especially if Dad is in this sort of mood”

    Venezia smiled “Well don’t. You need to patch it up with Dad. Mum seems to be coming around a little, but Dad is the obstacle, see if you can get through to him before you go. Mum and me would love you to stay, we haven't seen you in ages, might as well enjoy it while it lasts, plus you get some good cooking thrown in too” she winked “Try and see if you can do some library work for a little bit, might keep your mind busy than moping about at home”

    “You’re right” Vydra replied his eyes twinkling “Besides i’ve got some homework to do with my saber. It’s the symbol of being a Protector. Some may use it for attack, other like me choose to use it for defense. It’s a weapon, but only for those who wish to use it that way”

    “I could never see you wielding a weapon” Venezia said with a smirk “You’ve surprised me again”

    Vydra smirked back “Let’s hope the surprises are good ones” he rose from the table “Come on, i’m sure there’s something good to watch on the HoloNet. Just no romantic comedies”

    Over the next week and a half Vydra went back to his old job of assisting in the library. The students who were used to seeing him every day remarked that it was good to see him back. He explained that he had taken a little break and was only back for a short while before starting his new job.

    It also felt weird being back in his old clothes which mostly consisted of different colored suits with waistcoats and white shirts. Sometimes instead of a jacket he wore a cape which he used to use with a flourish. Now it felt alien to him but perhaps he could take some with him just without the capes. It would be another reminder of home.

    He never told them what it was he was going to do, but what he did say was that it was a most important position. They wished him well, but even they noticed the change in him. He still greeted them with smiles but his demeanor had completely changed.

    Vydra's father was avoiding him like the plague and they were hardly speaking which was saddening to see. His mother and sister however were becoming slightly more curious about what he could do, Venezia even throwing a test in to see if he could detect a certain book.

    Vydra eventually showed them his forcesaber a symbol of his ascension into the role of Protector. He explained his blade was green and that he had the feeling it was a nod to his librarian roots and his constantly asking questions. He explained that the Force was leading him down a defensive path, to mediate and not confront. To defend oneself and only use the weapon as the last line of defense.

    Venezia joked that she could never see him wielding a weapon anyway but she seemed in awe of it. His mother was less impressed but seemed to be intrigued at the fact that it was a symbol of what he had become now. There was concern pouring off her, her usual motherly concern whenever one of your children comes home with something dangerous. Especially since this weapon could literally slice most things in half.

    Every night before bed he set the Holocron and forcesaber at the end of his bed and meditated to try and increase his mental strength. He was also trying to see if anything would pop up regarding the shell for his forcesaber. But nothing was forthcoming which was frustrating him to no end.

    And he was running out of time. He didn't want to go back without achieving anything, however it was becoming so frustrating that at one point he was just going to give up and leave it as it was.

    He resolved to keep going for now. Inspiration would come at some point. It may have to be that he would return with some things from the library he could use. There were tools available at the Temple as well, so all was not lost.

    And so he raided the store room in the library, where they kept the materials for restoring the books. He wanted a gold shell at least which would match his blonde hair, so in went some gold paint. Perhaps some book leather to use as a grip, it would be a reminder of his former job. He also picked up some gold studs which were used as part of the books spines. Also some leather treatment to keep the leather fresh looking.

    Perfect he thought, it would do him for now until he returned to the Temple.

    However before he even thought about leaving there was still the problem of his father to sort out. He may not be able to heal the rift, but he could make a start which would have to be good enough. And perhaps it would leave Vydra in a better state of mind knowing that his father at least respected his decision.

    The day before he was due to leave he managed to finally grab his father at home. His sister and mother were just finishing up at the library, making sure everything was secure and safe before they locked up. He knew this was his last chance and he wasn't going to waste it.

    As Vydra was packing away his clothes, books, Holocron and saber (which still had not been changed yet) he heard his father downstairs in the kitchen. Vydra took a deep breath, calmed himself and his Force presence and decided to take the plunge.

    His father looked up as he came into the kitchen with a look that basically said “what are you still doing here” but Vydra decided he had had enough of this nonsense.

    “Dad I head back to the Temple tomorrow” Vydra said folding his arms across his chest “What I hoped for was at least to heal the wounds that have opened up between us two. But you have been avoiding me since that dinner when I first came home. And I think that we need to sort things out”

    “What is there to sort?” his father said whilst he made himself a cup of tea “You’ve made your decision, I have said my piece. So you can head on back to your mystic friends since we mean so little to you”

    Vydra was taken aback by his father's venom "Is that what you think? " he sounded sad "I have thought of you often while I was at the Temple, mainly when I was alone. You guys are the reason I have reached where I am today. I may not have had your support but I have felt your love for me, your concern that I not get hurt. Without you all I would be lost."

    This got his father's attention and his expression changed slightly into a sad look as if he was now slightly feeling guilty for what happened between them. Vydra advanced again "Please, I don't want to leave without at least having a quick chat" he gestured to the dining room.

    His father nodded and followed Vydra into the dining room where they both took seats facing each other.

    Vydra started "I remember when I was younger that you wanted me to be a different man. That my personality, my arrogance, my flair for the dramatic would get me nowhere. Well Dad, you were right and it was the Protectors that showed me that. That the path I was taking was the not the right one. My thirst for knowledge and the questions I was asking not just about the galaxy and the Force but about myself could only be answered by them"

    Vydra smiled and then shrugged "I was a bit like you, wondering if these mystics as you called them could sort things out, answer my questions. And they have. As you no doubt saw at our dinner not so long ago the Force is very much real. It could be that you or Mum or even Ven has access to it and you don't even realise it."

    His father remained silent as if he was trying to take it all in. He at least was letting Vydra speak. And he wasn't shaking his head which was a bonus.

    "Perhaps I should have stayed a librarian, been a good boy and done what I was supposed to. But both you and Mum know I am not like that, that the job of a librarian was not calling to me. Joren helped show me the way and the Master cultivated it. My calling is to defend the vulnerable, to keep the peace and to protect the galaxy from the darkness."

    His father was about to say something but Vydra held his hand up to stop him "You said it was not our problem. But it is, oh I can tell you it is. And if I don't do something, if I don't keep my guard up, then darkness will prevail. My family, everybody's families, Nouane and the galaxy could fall into the dark. It's up to me and the other Protectors to stop that from happening. Sometimes I do wish it wasn't up to me, but then I remembered it's not just myself I am protecting. It's everyone"

    Vydra sighed "So this is the offer I give to you. I know that things are bad between us, but can you at least respect my choice to become a Protector and just let me know that you still love me"

    He spread his arms wide as if to say "your turn".

    His father's look had softened slightly after Vydra had said his piece but he still had the hard look.

    "I never thought my son would become part of a religious group. It was never your style" was that a little smirk there? "I must admit that when you left that I was angry. Angry at you for leaving, angry at the Protectors for taking you away, for changing you" he looked Vydra dead in the eyes "But it seems the changes have been your own. You are more serious than before, no more arrogance, posturing and you are less argumentative. You haven't argued with you sister at all which is a record".

    Vydra had to smirk at that comment, him and his sister were always having arguments in the past.

    "I still don't agree with you regarding the Force, how can this Force control what you see, how can it provide you with visions of the future? It takes out the fact that you can control your future when some mystic power has made its mind up for you. That the Protectors can think they can protect everyone from darkness. That Nouane needs protecting. There is nothing out there that can hurt us"

    That's the isolationist talking Vydra thought.

    "Those up north have always tried to enforce their beliefs, that they are right and that some mystical powers rule us all" he shook his head "The stuff of fairy tales"

    He looked Vydra in the eyes "Whatever happens though, whether we disagree or not you are still my son. Plus your mother and sister would kill me if I disowned you., which I have no intention of doing by the way. You always have been a free spirit, a rebel if you will. And me and your mother have tried to tame you with no success"

    "If what you say is true, and something is about to happen then I will gladly eat my words" he face took on a worried look "I was just frightened as well that you would get hurt, that you would be turned away from your family. It seems I am wrong in that respect. I am sorry that this break did not turn out how you planned"

    Indeed Vydra thought but again did not say it out loud.

    "Whatever happens we all love you. I know that you may think we may not have shown it, but we do. Know that you carry our love with you, we just want you to be safe and well".

    Vydra couldn't ask for anything more. It wasn't a complete healing of the rift but he had to have patience. All wounds healed in time, and Vydra hoped that one day things may return to normal.

    "I promise I will try and keep well and try not to get into trouble, well most of the time" his face turned serious "I may not be returning home in the near future, possibly maybe not ever. But if I can I will try to send messages perhaps the Clock Temple may give you updates I don't know. But for what it's worth I never forgot your or Mum's lessons about life even if sometimes it seemed like I was not listening. Your feelings about the Protectors won't change, I may think it's wrong but I respect your opinion. All sides have to heard, perhaps that is part of what I am as a Protector".

    He rose up from the chair "I love you Dad, and I will try to do the family name proud"

    His father finally cracked a smile, rose from his chair and came around to Vydra resting his hands on his son's shoulders "I believe you will"

    The conversation ended with a hug.

    The next day Vydra was ready to head back after double and triple checking his things had all been packed, including the bits he would need to customize the shell. He had decided to do it all back at the Temple where there would be no distractions, especially from Venezia who would no doubt be poking her head in every five minutes to see what was going on.

    He gave his mother and his sister big hugs and shook his father's hand. His father had joined in the send off which he was pleased about. They all radiated love into the Force, his mother's eyes shining with tears as she was about to send her son off to the great unknown. The disappointment was still there but not as prevalent as before. And at least he would leave with his head held high and the rift between him and them closed a little.

    They all wished him luck and hoped he would return again if he could. Vydra was nearly in tears himself feeling like he was leaving home for the last time, leaving his family behind and marching off into the great unknown mystery.

    He waved as he left with a final "I love you".

    He made his way back to the Temple feeling a weight crushing his heart of loneliness and sadness. He would have to push those thoughts aside, he had done his best, now he had a job to do.

    He made his way back into his room at the Temple, unpacking his things and giving the photo of his family a long loving stare. After a few minutes he squared his shoulders and left the room.

    Time to rejoin the others.

    TAG: @Sinrebirth, All
     
  3. Kev-Mas_Colcha

    Kev-Mas_Colcha Jedi Grand Master star 5

    Registered:
    Dec 15, 2002
    IC: Zas'tel
    The Clock Temple

    Zas'tel didn't like having decisions made for him. So when the Master inferred that by saying "his path will be determined soon", he made a slight scowl. Though, currently he didn't have anything going on and nowhere else to go, so its not like he'd refuse to go with the flow, so to speak. He most certainly was afraid of where that might take him however.

    Oh yes, he was afraid. He didn't like to admit it, but the Master was right. The one emotion that represented him the most was most definitely fear. It was this fear that kept him in hiding, masking his presence from everyone else. It was this fear that kept him from forming any sort of long lasting relationships with others. It was this fear that kept him skeptical of just about everything. It was this fear that made him more keen to observe than to act.

    “I will not be intervening for these two weeks. You need to be yourselves, and speak to those you love, to those you fear, to those you hate. We Protect the Light, but the past will haunt you going forward," said the Master.

    This relieved Zas'tel. Well, except for the part where he mentioned "light" in a positive manner again. Alas, he was to be given some more freedom. Less intervention was good, in his eyes. He preferred to go about his business undisturbed.

    As for his Forcesaber, in regards to making it his own... well... It suited him just fine as it was, at least to a point. It was a small hilt, only about 19 centimeters long, but it was coated in a rather gaudy ornate finish. Electrum maybe? Either way, that would have to change. He needed something more subtle.

    He got to work creating a new shell for it. One that suited him slightly better. He started with a simple cylindrical tube with rounded ends, added a round ignition switch on side and a round knob on the other, which could be used to adjust the blade length and change the potency of the blade so that it would be less lethal if need be. Then he cut out a small opening for an emitter on one of the rounded ends, and placed a smaller open ended cylinder there to serve as the emitter, but not before transferring the innards of his old weapon inside, and connecting them appropriately, using the Force to guide his work.

    Afterwards, he coated the entire outside of the weapon with a material that he saw as the opposite of the one it was coated with before. It was a black polymer that seemed to react to light in the same manner as he did, but in addition to warping light around it, it had the added benefit of being invisible from sensor scans. This material would be known as Reflec later on in Galactic History, eventually to be used on the armor of elite soldiers such as the Republic Covert Ops clone troopers and Imperial Storm Commandos. He hadn't yet had a name for it though. It was just something he stumbled upon in his wanderings, having been able to easily find it before most others simply due to the fact that he was the only one who could see it.

    [​IMG]

    After having finished his weapon, he pulled it out, and tested the blade. To the naked eye, it looked as if he, his blade and his hilt were all just one shadowy visage. Smiling, Zas'tel then disengaged the blade, satisfied with his results.

    Tag: @Sinrebirth , all
     
  4. Sinrebirth

    Sinrebirth Mod-Emperor of the EUC, Lit, RPF and SWC star 9 Staff Member Manager

    Registered:
    Nov 15, 2004
    The Twilight Wars

    As Narrated by the Holocrons of the Protectors

    These start when the Kwa become convinced as to the penance of the Rakata, a species which had been created by the Old Ones to fight in their wars tens of thousands of millennia ago. The Rakata approach Kwa emissaries and request the chance to rejoin the greater galactic community. Y’know. The ones with the eye-stalks.

    These guys.

    [​IMG]

    The Gree and Kwa, when they were known as Kwoth and served the Old Ones, have long been at odds due the Kwoth re-developing the Gree hyperlanes into Iarger Infinity Gates. Though the Kwoth sought redemption and became the Kwa, the Gree have long despaired that their direct service of the Celestials has been joined by that of a former enemy. Kinda, not wanting to share the spotlight, and all that. When the Kwa and Gree appeal to the Celestials, they will be directed to seek the input of the Protectors, who served beside the Firstborn in the Temporal Wars against the Old Ones.

    You guys.

    It is the failure of that mediation which will result in a war, and that war will allow the Rakata to reveal their true colours and steal the Force-using hyperdrive of the Kwa, and truly start the Twilight Wars. The Light is lost, and without it, the Celestials cannot rectify the disaster nor foresee the twists of the conflict to come.

    Yeah. I know.

    The surviving Old Ones take advantage of the chaos, as much as Abeloth escapes the Maw, establishing the pattern of her escapes for all time. The Sith, Dark Nests, Esh-Ka, Vagaari, Anzati and other species come to the aid of Queen Gorog, and the war ravages the galaxy for five millennia - but only those worlds not covered by the Celestial’s Centerpoint, Cosmic Turbine and other awesome defensive weapons. Yet even then the former allies of the Old Ones - the Ssither, the Hutts, the Kashi Mer - they refuse to fight for the Old Ones and are attacked.

    The Old Ones wreck havoc across the galaxy and though the Celestials stop them, they abandon the galaxy to the Infinite Empire, which continues the Twilight Wars against its former allies, including the Esh-Ka and Sith, even as the Infinite Empire collapses into civil war against the Infernal Empire. The Infinite Empire triumphs and for another five millennia hundreds of worlds will writhe in agony, pain and blood beneath the iron rule of the Rakata.

    Because the Light is completely lost.


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    Last edited: Jun 6, 2019
  5. Kev-Mas_Colcha

    Kev-Mas_Colcha Jedi Grand Master star 5

    Registered:
    Dec 15, 2002
    IC: The Master & Zas'tel (combo with @Sinrebirth )
    Clock-Temple

    Later, after the ceremonial handing over of the Forcesabers


    The Master presented a set of the selfsame robes that he wore over as the ‘informal chat’ began. They included a clasp to fasten it around the neck, and where both voluminous and heavy; for the Master to be as mobile as he was implied a great deal of physical prowess, beside his obvious strength with the Force.

    There was a Holocron on the workbench; a dodecahedron. It was pretty large; overly so, and seemed to be multiple colours for each face. The Master was sitting; the robe had floated out of the drawer on a current of the Force.

    “You’re probably disappointed that your Forcesaber did not present with the colour you willed upon it.” Straight to the point, as ever, was the Master.

    "No, actually had I known it could be black like it had turned out to be, I would have chosen it," replied the Defel, with a rare smile on his face, "It suits me."

    The Defel put the robes on reluctantly, and continued.

    "These robes might get in the way, as all clothing usually does though. The natural talent my species has for concealing themselves does not work as well if we're wearing bulky and cumbersome clothing items such as these. Do I have to wear them?"

    “They’re mimetic, so they’ll match your skin and whatever shade you choose. It would honour me if you did at least mirror my attire, even if you tweak the weight... But as to you’re colour... It’s okay, it’s okay.” The Master said, nodding to himself. “I understand.”

    “Because you see,” he gestured laconically to the Forcesaber. “That’s my Forcesaber, actually. The crystal has already imprinted upon my personality.”

    Zas'tel's eyes widened as a thought about the possibility of something he'd never imagined possible.

    "So I can change it at any time? Possibly even intentionally stand out if the need... or desire... arises?"

    “Yup, you can. The only caveat being that you’ll look like me when you’re wandering around all visible-like - try and keep the omniscience up and the hood up, okay?” The Master shrugged. “You’re a bit shorter than me, of course.”

    He gestured to the Forcesaber. “I did just tell you that’s my Forcesaber, y’know. I’m trusting you with it.” The Master rolled his eyes - not that they were seen. “But clothes are important, of course.”

    "So then I take it that I failed to will a color onto it?" the Defel asked as he frowned, "What did I do wrong?"

    “No, no, no,” The Master said, waving his hands. “A crystal which has been imprinted upon cannot be changed unless it is wounded, violently, and it will turn a specific colour due to it. A wounded crystal can be purified, of course, but I didn’t ask you to wound my poor little Forcesaber, did I?”

    “Though of course,” he added thoughtfully. “I imagine it would have been black, either way. Similarities and all,” he said with a lazy, nonchalant, gesture.

    "Similarities?" asked Zas'tel, his ears perking up under the hood in curiosity, "You prefer to hide away as well?"

    “I’m hardly going to tell you my Truth, am I now?” He put an odd weight on the word truth, signifying it was a capital T. “But that brings me to my point quite neatly.”

    “Much like the others, we’re here to discuss your Truth.” He stuttered. “No, I mean, I am discussing your Truth with you, not that we discussed you -“ he held out both hands, gloved palms outward. “I discussed their individual Truth’s with them. No discussion about you, okay?”

    Zas'tel looked back at the Master with a look of confusion on his face.

    "What do you mean? What's this Truth you speak of?"

    “Phew. I was worried that you were gonna go all paranoid on me then. We wouldn’t want that, would we?” He laughed a bit, but overly so. For a brief moment his emotion appearing to be an affectation, projected rather than refined. “But alrighty.”

    There was a deep breath. It seemed to draw in all around them. As if the Force itself was joining the Master in doing so.

    “Your Truth.” He held out his arms to the air, and the very particles seemed charged; the room crackled and the air acquired an ethereal thickness. “Is to watch.”

    "Sounds good to me. Doesn't force me out of my comfort zone."

    If Zas'tel's features could be seen beyond a mere shadow, one might be able to see a smile forming on his face.

    He laughed at the wry smile, and the purple illusion faded. “Sorry, I had to do that. It was just worth too much added value.” He allowed his grin to spin into the Force.

    The Master pointed to the Forcesaber. “I’ve put something inside that, you see. A part of my essence. Separated from me, I can see everything that you see whilst whilst you wield that Forcesaber, and anyone who inherits it. Everything. So, you see...” he gestured it the Holocron on the worktop. “I already know you’ve succeeded, and found a worthy secret apprentice to pass the Forcesaber to, because I’ve completed the Holocron of the future.” He allowed that information to sink in.

    “Congratulations!” The Master said, leaping from the chair. He clapped them on the shoulder. “Come on! Give yourself a pat on the back for succeeding so well.”

    “Some thirty seven millennia of events, to the end of the Star Wars. You did well, my apprentice! I didn’t expect you to allow me to see that far.”

    Zas'tel blinked. All of this was very confusing to him. All this talk of knowing future events was a bit too complicated for him to process, and all he could muster up for a reply was a simple, "Thank you, Master."

    It was likely the Master could tell what Zas'tel was thinking, or rather, that he was unable to think clearly and he knew it, and hoped he'd understand his considerable level of confusion.

    “Well, you did it!” The Master smiled, in the Force, at very least. “You successfully pass my Forcesaber to your apprentice and they onto another. They see so much!”

    He slapped the Holocron. “And I get to see it all and record it down.”

    “So, yup. I’m pretty happy with all that.” He stepped back, hands on his hips. “But yes, here’s the tricky bit.”

    “You can’t have a Holocron. I can’t have you creating any temporal loops. That’d be a disaster you see; sending you forward with knowledge of what is to happen... it’s make a royal mess of things. Of course, it going to be messy enough by the end, what with -“

    “Oops!” He said, placing his hands over his mouth. “Nearly did it.” A chuckle.

    “I’m just messing with you.”

    Zas'tel tried to make heads or tails out of what he just said, and miraculously at least a little bit managed to make sense to him.

    "Well, I can imagine why knowing my future would cause issues."

    "If you already know what's going to happen, you might not try as hard to see to it that it does, because you'll take it for granted. Then that perfect future you've seen would fade away."

    “Yes, the perfect future, indeed.” He nodded. “Good. Good, good.”

    He nodded to the Holocron. “Right. Soon it’ll be time for you to head off, alone and all. Let what is going to happen play out between the others. You can’t get involved; just keep your eyes - my eyes - on the prize.”

    “So if there is anything you want to deal with before you go, you have the two week break, and then off you go. You can’t get involved, at least not for now.”

    "Well... it's not like I'd like to get involved if I don't have to."

    Zas'tel paused for a moment, then sighed.

    "But I suppose I will if it ever becomes necessary. I'll take full advantage of the two weeks where it's not necessary though, that's for sure."

    Zas'tel turned towards the door, looking back to the Master.

    "I suppose that'll be all?"

    Tag: @Sinrebirth , all
     
  6. Sinrebirth

    Sinrebirth Mod-Emperor of the EUC, Lit, RPF and SWC star 9 Staff Member Manager

    Registered:
    Nov 15, 2004
    Prologue

    Not Lesson Three

    IC: The Master

    Clock-Tower

    It was almost inevitable that somebody would be late, eventually. Vale had not attended consistently for weeks, for example, but the absence of Joren spoke to a different point.

    All that were present was Vydra and Dunkeel. No harm, and plenty to work with. There was always Two, after all. They would undoubtedly be confused by the absence of the others, but he may as well press on. “So,” he said, glancing from one to the other. “We’re missing two students, but ho hum. I’m sure they’re innocently busy. Not with each other, of course, but, yeah.” He sounded amused.

    He eyed Dunkeel, who had typically kept busy with his work, for he was already an entirely balanced individual, it seemed. Vydra had spent the last two weeks diving into his former life and had dedicated himself to his homework; resolution. The Master could feel it, even if he had not surreptitiously wandered the city in the last two weeks, just to be sure that nobody misused their Forcesabers. Of course, he had seen each of them over the break, and passed three of them their Truth and Holocron.

    He was due to meet with Joren just before the formal start to Lesson Three, after all. This had never been intended to be that lesson. This was... something else.

    “So, we’ve something fun to discuss. Eventually we’re going to need to move forward with more members and so forth. I might even look out for some before. But inevitably it’ll be you guys who decide how we’re going to move forward. Your the first generation of Protectors in... oh, sixty five millennia.” He chortled a little.

    “So, you two can throw out some ideas what the Order should look like. Or, perhaps, what your Order would look like.” He seemed to leer and loom over them. “But you’ll practice with your new personalised Forcesabers as you debate!”

    “Nicely, now,” he fluttered his hand to them, indicating that they may begin.

    —-
    Elsewhere

    Zas’tel had to do what Zas’tel had to do. Leave the everyday security of the world - security he had not welcomed nor sought, anyway. The city was vibrant, and busy, but whilst the Master was in-class, Zas’tel had to prepare for his departure. To pack, to ready himself, to get going.

    The market places where he would be most readily able to obtain these things were dotted around the south, with the majority of the other nonhumans, especially as he would need to be visible to negotiate and barter. The Master had left him a little local currency, but also some other ones which were not used locally. Credits with an unknown script, peggets, aurodium pieces. Zas’tel would not recognise them from Nouane.

    But thinking of the marketplace would give rise to a Dark current in the Force. Something, or someone, was planning a murder.

    TAG: @Kev-Mas_Colcha, @Mitth_Fisto, @Jerjerrod-Lennox, @HanSolo29, @QueenSabe7

    OOC: Mitth, Lennox, you may post up to three times this week.


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    Last edited: Jun 6, 2019
  7. Jerjerrod-Lennox

    Jerjerrod-Lennox Jedi Grand Master star 7

    Registered:
    Mar 9, 2005
    IC: Vydra Delomeux
    Location: The Clock Temple, Nouane


    Vydra had arrived and only spotted one person there, the Chistori. The shadow, the female and Joren were nowhere to be found. Vydra scanned the area seeing anybody could just be hiding somewhere, especially the shadow. But nobody materialized.

    I wonder where Joren has gone he thought, strange for him not to be back. Perhaps he got caught up somewhere….

    The Master began.

    “So,” he said, glancing from one to the other. “We’re missing two students, but ho hum. I’m sure they’re innocently busy. Not with each other, of course, but, yeah.” He sounded amused.

    Vydra immediately detected that he had not mentioned number three, which immediately sparked his suspicions. He allowed the Force to infuse his senses as he stretched his mind across the room. Still nothing.

    Vydra had a job to do and he was making sure that everything that was out of place was investigated no matter how small. He nearly snorted at the last comment the Master made, he didn't know whether the dark haired lady or Joren were spending time together or not. It wouldn't surprise Vydra if they were thought as Joren always had that effect on the ladies.

    Venezia would be jealous.

    “So, we’ve something fun to discuss. Eventually we’re going to need to move forward with more members and so forth. I might even look out for some before. But inevitably it’ll be you guys who decide how we’re going to move forward. Your the first generation of Protectors in... oh, sixty five millennia.” He chortled a little.

    Vydra wondered whether these new members would become the same as they were or whether they themselves would become Masters of a sort, training apprentices to pass on their knowledge and expertise. Vydra was worried it may come to this as he had not much experience himself but if he had to it would be good to have someone to share his views with and the fact that they would be more mediators than warriors. Still couldn't mean they couldn't learn the subtle nuances of combat.

    Or if they were becoming the same as he and the others it would be more people to spar with and could mean that they could cover the galaxy more. Especially with his role in this whole thing.

    “So, you two can throw out some ideas what the Order should look like. Or, perhaps, what your Order would look like.” He seemed to leer and loom over them. “But you’ll practice with your new personalised Forcesabers as you debate!”

    “Nicely, now,” he fluttered his hand to them, indicating that they may begin.

    Vydra had finally worked on his Forcesaber whilst waiting for the others who had unfortunately not appeared. His hilt was now a gold painted cylinder with gold emitter rings and a gold switch. Book leather made his grip which he had made by cutting the leather into stirps and securing them to the cylinder. The leather would be a good grip able to be non slip and easy to handle. The switch he kept as i was, the studs were placed near the end of the emitter nozzle, all on each side representing the points of the compass, reminding Vydra of each district.

    It was him and Nouane basically in a Forcesaber shell.

    Whilst meditating at home he had tried to build a bond with his Forcesaber, for him to be a part of it and vice versa. To work in harmony when they would need it most. To forge a bond so strong that the weapon would be an extension of him. To defend until the end.

    And so he would begin now.

    He activated his Forcesaber the green blade springing forth. He could imagine this blade becoming a beacon for hope in the future, if he got the chance.

    “I don’t know what you would think the Order should be like, but for me we should be exploring as much as we can of the Force, the lighter side of things of course” he gave a slight smile before turning serious “But I believe the Force should be used for knowledge and defense, never for attack. To attack is to mean that we may lose who we are, that we are lost in the heat of battle and that we could stray into the dark”

    “In no way am I suggesting we become monks and sit everything out, but that we should exhaust all options before going in full guns blazing. Sometimes negotiation is not the best option that is true, but it doesn't mean we should try not to pull our Forcesabers out at every occasion”

    TAG: @Mitth_Fisto , @Sinrebirth , @HanSolo29 (mention)
     
  8. QueenSabe7

    QueenSabe7 RPF Awards Host star 6 VIP - Game Host

    Registered:
    Mar 23, 2001
    From Before: Part 1

    IC: Vale Sera

    Capital City, Nouane

    It was a long trip home.

    Not in distance – the Clock-Temple being just north of the city and her home to the south, all in all the trip itself can be easy and quick, considering. There are multiple options for travel, each with the ever-changing scenery of the metropolis as a backdrop, the eclectic mix of citizens coming and going that never failed to be consistently entertaining. Or distracting, depending on how you viewed things. This time, for once, Vale didn’t recall paying attention to any of it… visually the journey had been a blur.

    Emotionally, it felt as if it had taken days.

    Part of Vale was usually drawn to her home and to the woman she shared it with, while the other part pulled back, back to the relative safety and intrigue of the temple or the mind-numbing routine of work. This particular evening she just wanted to hover someplace in between her worlds and not face the realities of either. A foolish thought, she knew, very childish for a woman of her upbringing and military background. For one who lived in the Light.

    Sitting alone in the back half of a hover-rail train car, the lingering effects of her thrilling day were waning. The lessons and the subsequent private meeting with the Master that she was still dissecting, the already beloved weapon that now sat hidden in the folds of her jacket – they had given her wonder and amazement, all of it together making her feel like she had woken that morning as one person and she was now returning home as another - an advanced and better version of herself, if not an altogether different ‘Vale’. And she was wracked with guilt for it.

    So many reveals in such a short amount of time, so many truths dampened by the weight of a lie she had the very real opportunity to tell. But she couldn’t, could she? Live a lie? Be anything but honest with her partner, her wife?

    Vale’s stomach lurched unnaturally and she curled forward, resting her head upon her knees. The normally calm sea of the Force rippled out around her in response to her roiling emotions. It was wrong, feeling this way. So at odds with herself that it manifested physically, and she struggled to maintain control of her thoughts as the rail came to her stop just on the southern outskirts of the capital.

    She practically rushed out into the cooling evening air, finding a support strut on the rapidly emptying platform and leaning her back against it as the train rushed on to its next destination. She gratefully welcomed the soft breeze the swiftly moving vehicle created, her skin having grown sticky beneath her uniform amidst her worrying. The sun was on its way down at that time and she was thankful for it, the heat of full-day surely would have agitated her further.

    A groan escaped her, more closely defined as a whine as she forced herself to acknowledge there was no use in staying here, putting off the inevitable. Vale steadied herself and pushed on, walking down from the station platform to continue onto her winding street, her home only a couple blocks away. The section they were located in was considered a suburb though it was still a busy area. Hers was the first stop the rail system made from the city proper, skipping over several quarantine zones that humans were best to avoid. However, their little piece of land felt far removed from the hustle and bustle, a safe space from daily life and its constant demands.

    Coming to her walkway, she turned and headed up the stone path, giving her the same welcome feeling of relief each she had each and every time she took these same steps. The house itself sat atop a small slope just a short distance away - with a small lawn in front, and another of similar size behind, it was of the ‘quaint’ variety. Tall shrubbery of differing colors and shapes ran along three sides of the lot to offer some semblance of privacy, though their neighbors to the left and right could still be seen through gaps in the branches. The main structure itself was a tranquil, dual-level villa that contained many of the modern amenities available to the pair’s financial class, but on the outside looked more like something from an era long forgotten or a time long past. There had been this mystical quality to it that Zinara had fallen in love with straight away, and Vale had loved it too because of that.

    It was the only place they had that was their own, made special and made into a home because of the other.

    She smiled at the feelings that stirred while reaching for the keypad at the main door, sensing a slight commotion just beyond the threshold. So she paused momentarily with a barely hidden giggle, allowing the ‘surprise’ to take place even though she knew what was coming. Only entering the first digit of the access code, the panel abruptly slid open with a hiss and Vale sucked in an audible breath and brought a hand to her chest in feigned shock. In the doorway stood Zinara Carrick, stomping a foot in humorous defeat, her white-blonde hair pinned haphazardly atop her head and a lop-sided grin upon her full lips. She was dressed half out of her work uniform which completed the look of someone who had been in a hurry, though that didn’t stop her from being disarmingly beautiful. Nothing did.

    “It never, ever works on you, does it?” she purred in a lightly accented voice before stepping outside to pull Vale in for a warm embrace. Zinara nuzzled her face into the crook of her neck, lips brushing against her skin as she breathed. It sent an icy hot chill curling slowly down her spine to burrow low in her stomach, and she wove her arms around the other tightly to press them together, as if close was never close enough.

    “No, it doesn’t,” Vale whispered back, pulling her face away just enough so that they could look at each other. “Maybe you aren’t trying hard enough?” She grinned teasingly, then leaned in to kiss her wife. They remained in place for several minutes, savoring the touch of the other and relishing their love, both spiritually and physically. Vale could get lost here and almost did, nearly forgetting the deception she was harboring from the woman in her arms…

    Zinara was the one to break contact first, however, both of them breathless and their reluctance as clear as day. What was also clear was that they both had other things on their mind, though only one of them was able to know that.

    “Zin-“

    “Let’s go inside.” Vale bit her lip and watched as Zin turned on her heels and reentered their home, calling back over her shoulder as she went. “What are you craving for dinner?”

    “I don’t feel like cooking,” she responded truthfully, exhaustion weighing heavily upon her as she followed her wife and the door sealed shut behind her. They both moved to the kitchen area which was to the left of the entrance, the bottom level of the villa almost a completely open and connective floorplan.

    “Well, kriff. Neither do I,” Zin quipped as she reached for a pale green bottle upon a high shelf, procuring a pair of black, stemmed glasses from a cabinet after. “Guess we are starving, then.” Offering a wink as Vale took a seat at the island counter she was currently using to pour them both a drink, she slid a full one across the smooth surface and drank heartily from the second. Once done, she placed it back down and leaned forward on her elbows. “Seems we were both running late today,” she continued, licking the red from her lips. “How was work? Something happen?”

    Vale was mid-drink and nearly choked, somehow finagling the reaction into a light cough once she managed to get the rest down her throat. Which was suddenly completely dry and coarse despite the cool liquid that had just coated it. “No…” She croaked hoarsely at first, clearing her throat a second time and shaking her head. Her stomach was churning again. “No, work was pretty normal. The usual…”

    Her wife wasn't buying it. “Did that Captain What’s-His-Name start another ridiculous skirmish?” she asked, rolling her eyes making it known the subject she had brought up was particularly annoying to her. “You know, there is a reason why you rank so high, so young. You take your job seriously, they don’t.”

    Zinara raised her glass as if to make a toast. “Kriff ‘em,” she spat before taking another sip.

    “He was fine, no issues this time. Though I would not argue a demotion if it came his way.” Vale laughed lightly, a bit too forced but the woman across from her didn’t seem to pick up on that, twisting a few loose strands of silvery hair and offering a chuckle of her own. This was growing more uncomfortable by the second, each one that passed by ripe with opportunity for honesty but each time she attempted to bring it up, everything about her shut down. Why was this so hard?

    “You alright?”

    “Hmm?” Startled, and the embarrassed that she had been startled at all, she watched as Zin adjusted back to her full height and moved around the counter to take a seat next to her. She sat facing Vale, watching her closely.

    “You seem far away.”


    “I’m sorry,” she sighed, trying to shake off her apprehension and prepare herself. “It’s been a long day...” Tell her.

    “I know…” Zin reached out and grasped Vale’s hand, their fingers weaving together and holding tight. Her eyes had become glassy, sad even.

    “Know what?” Tell her, now. For gods’ sake do it!

    “I… know we have not returned to the subject of… of your decision last year…”

    “Babe, really you don’t need to-“

    “No please, let me say this to you.” Zin’s other hand had come up to cover Vale’s mouth, halting her speech. Waiting until she gave her a nod in understanding, it dropped down to rest reassuringly on her leg. “I saw how… unfathomably difficult it was for you. To leave… them. That place. How different you have been since then.” Vale fidgeted but her wife held fast, squeezing her hand and leg to keep her focused. She looked deep into her eyes, seeing the determination there and feeling it as well. Flowing steadily into unease, desire and love. Their love.

    “I need to tell you something,” she blurted, leaning towards her and wanting to just let it all out, scream it at her if she had to. It couldn’t be held back any longer, the truth would hurt but it was a necessary pain. Rip off the bacta patch, so to speak.

    “Vale. WAIT.”

    Yes…. wait. Lie.

    “No… listen-”

    YOU listen, damn it. I know you can sense what I may be going through in saying this to you right now so let me fragging say it to you. Give me this moment!” All of a sudden, her eyes brimmed with tears while her emotions were brewing into a storm, to which Vale drew away from. Being so finely attuned to this woman’s feelings, any torment or strife she suffered, they shared.

    So, she bit her tongue and honored her request; she would simply tell her after she was done. Yes, after.

    Satisfied, Zin appeared to realign her thoughts, taking a brief pause to summon her voice again. “You have been different, very. I do not need to have the Force to see this. It’s been… it’s been killing me to know that I am the reason for this pain in you.” She let go of Vale and looked away, grabbed her glass to sip her drink distractedly. “I never thought I would be as selfish as I was in asking you to choose, I never thought with you, that I would get to that place. Ultimatums are a known cause of death of a bond as profound as ours…”

    It was Vale’s turn now to comfort and she gently brushed a stray tear from Zin's cheek. She swallowed harshly, a lump having formed in her throat which oddly enough, helped keep her silent.

    “We argued, we yelled, we were silent to one another and I had caused that to happen. Me, the person who should be keeping you from harm not inviting it!” Her head whipped up to meet her gaze again, laser-focused and certain. “It had to be done, Vale. And you know why, we went over it though not as much as you deserved. My family, my upbringing, what I know… I had to demand this of you. And I was so frightened I wouldn’t be... your choice in the end...” She broke here, a sharp intake of breathe and she feared her wife would fall apart, but being the strong woman she knew her to be, she rallied and kept it together.

    But I was.” Here she grasped Vale's face with both hands, kissing her once. “I never doubted you and your love for me. But in that moment, it became something else. Beyond real and more than safe. It was like… like we became one in a way most others never can experience. I don’t know how to explain-“

    “I know what you mean,” Vale cut in at last as they pulled apart, her voice barely above a whisper. “I do.”

    Spurred on by her reassurance, Zin seemed to lighten, like a weight lifted from her shoulders. “And things have been getting better lately, we only needed time. The past month or so, I’ve seen the light in you return.”

    Vale closed her eyes at that, realizing that this was around the time that she had secretly revisited the temple after so long, already beginning to plot her way back to her Master and the Protectors…

    “I’m so, so very sorry for making you change, Vale. But I am so glad to know that you fought for me and us, and that it is all behind us now.”

    All she could do was nod once and turn back to the counter to take the last gulp of her wine. Zin took that as a sign she wanted another and appearing to be thankful for an excuse to move on from the conversation they just had, jumped up and proceeded to pour the next round. “Oh! You said you needed to tell me something?” Zin casually added, slipping right back into her normal self without issue. Though her eyes were still rimmed red, she was smiling expectantly and Vale felt as though her stomach had dropped through to the floor.

    “I… well, I wanted to tell you that…” This was the chance, but her resolve was no longer what it was before Zinara’s speech. She folded quickly. “I… was approved for leave next month and… was thinking we could go to the country for a bit. Haven’t taken a trip in a while…”

    Vale nearly rolled her eyes at the new lie that flowed all too easily from her mind. Zin clapped once and cheered, whooping loudly. “Oh hell yes, we do deserve a break, don’t we?” Sidling back over to her, she climbed into her lap and smirked suggestively. “We should celebrate. A pre-vacation party. I think we ought to eat, have a few more drinks… go upstairs…”

    “Let’s go out,” Vale suggested impulsively, feeling positively dirty with shame and deceit that she could not imagine allowing herself the pleasure of intimacy with her wife. She hadn’t earned so much as a glance from this woman, let alone her touch.

    “Out? Now? It’s kind of late for a reservation, isn’t it?”

    “Not at some of the classier places,” Vale reasoned quickly, the house having become stuffy and overheated with emotion. “We’re celebrating, right?”

    That made Zin happier and she immediately stood and headed for the stairs to their loft bedroom. “I’ll be ready so fast it’ll make your head spin,” she teased while padding up the steps.

    “Already there,” Vale breathed to herself once she was alone, running her hands through her hair and then grabbing handfuls of the brunette locks, pulling at them once, hard. What was she going to do now? She had let fear and guilt rule her ability to reason, let the negativity of darkness lead her into a lie she could in no way keep. The truth never stayed buried forever and Zin knew her like the well-read books on their main room table.

    However, maybe some more time to figure out her situation at the temple before unloading all this on Zinara would be the best route to take. She would have something more concrete to bring to the table, she would have her words planned and a strategy in place.

    Perhaps waiting was what she needed to do to make this right. Waiting, and lying.

    TAG: No one
     
  9. Mitth_Fisto

    Mitth_Fisto Force Ghost star 6

    Registered:
    Sep 29, 2005
    IC: Dunkeel
    Clock-Temple

    When the other student arrived, following the knowing and time and call. They waited together until The Master finally talked and gave them revelations, chief amongst which was that they were only missing two students. He did not see the Shadow, more important he did not feel the Shadow, and even more important the scent of the Shadow student was fading, not growing stronger. Very odd.

    Letting it wash away in the moment he moved through the motions of removing his shirt and preparing for what was to come. It was then, as he looked at the other that the discussion began. The words, awkward and glaring. They spoke of silence and unsureness that existed between them. They knew of each other, but none truly knew each other, and none surely knew each others truth.

    “So, you two can throw out some ideas what the Order should look like. Or, perhaps, what your Order would look like.” The Master seemed to leer and loom over them. “But you’ll practice with your new personalised Forcesabers as you debate!”

    “Nicely, now,” he fluttered his hand to them, indicating that they may begin.

    The other had strengthened the scent of books and musty cloister upon himself, edged with gold like a museum artifact. Vydra activated his Forcesaber the green blade springing forth. It was a stark contrast, the must and the verdant glow.

    “I don’t know what you would think the Order should be like, but for me we should be exploring as much as we can of the Force, the lighter side of things of course” Vydra gave a slight pulling of lips, as though unsure if he wanted to smile before turning serious “But I believe the Force should be used for knowledge and defense, never for attack. To attack is to mean that we may lose who we are, that we are lost in the heat of battle and that we could stray into the dark.”

    “In no way am I suggesting we become monks and sit everything out, but that we should exhaust all options before going in full guns blazing. Sometimes negotiation is not the best option that is true, but it doesn't mean we should try not to pull our Forcesabers out at every occasion”

    Cocking his head to one side he pulled forth Fang, letting it rest in plain view before closing his grasp upon it. Settling and sealing his hand about it. His fingers and claws naturally conforming to it like two sides of one mouth meeting. "You are a funny one. Aren't you? Not pulling them out when we now do so during common philosophizing." Calling it forth his white blade blazed forward. A clean slate ready to be tested, to be used. As the other had already stated only ever in defence he felt it was proper that he take the first move and raced in with a roar and double handed swing from low guard up as though to bisect Vydra.

    "We should build it as this nest was built! Find and nurture, grow and accept. Defend and if needed prune ourselves if one strays too far!"

    TAG: @Jerjerrod-Lennox , @Sinrebirth
     
  10. HanSolo29

    HanSolo29 Manager Emeritus + Official Star Wars Artist star 7 VIP - Former Mod/RSA

    Registered:
    Apr 13, 2001
    From Before: Part II

    The following is a combo post with the always amazing, QueenSabe7 – thank you so much!! =D=


    IC: Vale Sera, Zinara Carrick, and Joren & Tera Graal
    The Bluewater Grill, Nouane City

    To visit the Bluewater Grill was an adventure in its own right. Nestled on the bluffs of Nouane City’s scenic waterfront, the restaurant afforded breathtaking views of the western river and the fog-cloaked majesty of the rugged mountains to the south. The sound of the surf licking against the rocks only added to the picturesque atmosphere. In addition to the landscape, the outside terrace also provided easy access to one of the planet’s most famous shopping and entertainment districts. It was no wonder that the Bluewater attracted both locals and visitors alike.

    And on this particular evening, the Graals hoped to enjoy all the amenities the Bluewater had to offer.

    It had been a last-minute decision on Joren’s part; after returning home from the Temple earlier that day, he had sensed Tera’s indifference like a beacon through the Force. He didn’t like to willfully pry into his wife’s thoughts, but sometimes it was impossible to ignore the emotional tumult wafting off of her. She was five months pregnant, and sometimes it was like a literal firestorm raging inside of her.

    Fortunately, it hadn’t been quite that serious today, but it was enough to have disrupted the usual flow of things. While she openly professed her support and joy with his work, he knew that she still had reservations about his weekend outings with the Protectors. These feelings were born out of her own curiosity and her inability to fully grasp the intricate nature of the Force. Hopefully one day that will change, but for now, Joren had to alleviate her concerns by keeping things very open between them. After all, he had nothing to hide. Their love for each other was strong, and he knew that they would ultimately prevail.

    To help this process along, he had decided to take her out on an evening excursion to the Bluewater Grill for dinner, and then to catch a live theater production in the entertainment district afterwards. In that sense, Joren was a romantic at heart.

    As they now entered the main dining terrace, Tera placed a slender hand upon her husband’s shoulder, rousing him out of his reverie. Joren angled his chin down to stare into her chestnut eyes, offering a warm smile of affection before turning to gaze upon their immediate surroundings. The fine tables, with cloths made from materials harvested from the rarest silks and plant fibers, seemed to luminesce against the candle-lit scene. They were shapely pearls in a sea of shadows, drawing the eye to enhance the intimate ambience.

    The people sitting around each setting seemed to add to these adornments – or subtract from them, depending. Joren liked to believe that he and his wife at least did not detract from their surroundings – he had opted for a light collared shirt with a conservative navy coat surrounding it. Tera wore a mahogany dress with a draping neckline and frills around the shoulders; it allowed plenty of room around the midsection for her growing baby bump.

    The finest in Nouane were in attendance this evening, but even some of them turned to stare as the couple entered. Joren flashed a crooked grin and lowered his head marginally, seemingly embarrassed by the attention as he ushered Tera along behind the host. While he was usually very personable and went out of his way to spend time with his fans when they recognized him in public, he had hoped for a quiet dinner alone with his wife.

    Of course, that was before he felt the sudden pull in the Force – a quiet stirring that felt familiar somehow.

    Having sensed a rising tide in the Force – the emotions of her fellow restaurant-goers spiking, enough not to ignore – Vale had turned abruptly to her side, cutting her wife off mid-sentence with her mild alarm. Her blue-grey eyes landing on the apparent source of the commotion, she suddenly wished she had refrained from such an obvious reaction, and also that she hadn’t convinced Zinara to leave home at all that evening.

    She jerked away from what she saw almost immediately, stricken with fear as she locked her gaze back on her wife sitting just across the table from her. Maybe she hadn’t seen-

    “Oh kriff, Vale! It’s him!

    Vale bristled and winced visibly, reluctantly angling her head back over her shoulder in cooperation with Zin’s exclamation. It was him, indeed - the writer from the temple, Joren Graal, making his way across the terrace to a table nearby. She felt a hand grasp hers and squeeze with excitement. “I can’t believe it, Mr. ‘Divine Encounters’ himself, dining with us common folk,” she continued in a strained whisper, having leaned in conspiratorially, as if the entire room was not already aware there was a celebrity in their midst. “Definitely looks better in person. And that must be his wife, how pretty is she? Practically glowing…”

    Vale gladly turned away again, taking note of the flush on her wife’s cheeks, her genuine enthusiasm rippling off of her in a gentle stream. She recognized Zin was perhaps a little giddy from the wine she had consumed thus far, but also knew she would've found a way to laugh at the situation regardless. That aside, she realized that she was actually fascinated with this man. Always knowing she had been a fan of his work, perhaps she hadn’t taken the time to truly understand just how much. Though, the hard copies of his books she owned were worn down and fraying, having been read many times over…

    She shook her head, the urgent desire to leave consuming her wandering thoughts. The truth needed to be told, not doing so immediately had been wrong, so wrong and that was abundantly clear now. The Light was showing her the danger and betrayal that awaited those that deceived others, whether done innocently or not. As Zin continued her covert staring and quip-making, Vale began searching for their waiter, hoping to find him and pay swiftly... yes, they needed to be alone. She could take her for a walk along the river… it would be peaceful there, calm. It needed to be calm

    Narrowing his eyes, Joren hesitated before reaching the table, his hand coming to rest casually on Tera’s arm as if to stop her from wandering into some unforeseen snare. He then stretched out with the Force, searching the area beyond its physical limitations to pinpoint the source of this disturbance. As far as he could tell, there was no ill intent, it was…

    Ah, there.

    A few tables away, directly along the terrace’s edge – which afforded some of the best views of the vista – Joren spotted a very familiar face. It was one of his fellow students; the same dark-haired woman who had eluded him at the Temple earlier today. She was casually engaged in a quiet conversation with another woman and didn’t seem to notice him.

    Or had she simply decided to ignore him? Surely, she must’ve sensed his approach through the Force…?

    “What’s wrong?” Tera asked tentatively from his side, her brow furrowed with concern.

    Joren shook his head slowly. “Nothing, just someone I know from work,” he reassured her with a smile. He lowered his hand to clasp hers within his own. “Come on, I’d like you to meet her. It’ll just be a second.”

    "They look so happy," Zinara mentioned sweetly though Vale was distracted, still trying to locate their server.

    “Yes well, highly doubt they want to be disturbed, so let’s finish up and-“

    “Oh my gods, he’s coming over here!” Zin interjected in a humorous panic and Vale froze, Joren’s not altogether familiar signature in the Force suddenly becoming stronger by the second now that she had honed in on it, indicating he was in fact, heading in her direction.

    No, not like this.

    Tera did not argue. She had grown accustomed to Joren’s chance encounters in public and had accepted this consequence of fame long ago. It had reached a point where they now worked more in tandem, with her supporting him at every available opportunity. For that, Joren was grateful. He knew it wasn’t an easy life.

    Brushing that thought aside, the Doctor approached the table at an easy gait, clearing his throat to announce his presence. “Hi,” he said plainly, allowing a pleasant smile to spread over his features. “Sorry to interrupt your meal, but I couldn’t help but notice you sitting over here. It’s…” he pressed his lips together for a moment as he tried to recall her name, “...Vale, right? I tried to catch up with you earlier today, but I guess you must’ve slipped out.”

    Vale glanced up at him with a forced smile as he halted alongside their table, having no qualms at jumping into introductions and making it known that they were somehow already acquainted. She folded a bit, leaning back in her seat with a look of defeat upon her face. Her fellow Protector would certainly be able to sense this if he cared to, as she didn’t even see the worth in attempting to shield herself from another.

    Exactly like this. You deserve this. Liar.

    Zin, on the other hand, had straightened the moment the pair arrived. She had confusion written all over her presence in the Force, though her exterior remained warm and welcoming as she beamed up at them. “Mr. Graal,” she acknowledged pleasantly to start, her eyes dancing back and forth between Vale and the author when the former didn't immediately respond. There was a level of awkwardness that all of a sudden began to take root. "I.. love your show, and books..."

    "This is my wife, Zinara," Vale finally added, not able to meet the gaze of whom she spoke so she looked back at Joren and then to his wife, instead. Her expression softened some as she detected the additional life force emanating from the woman at his side, before also noting her swollen belly lightly stretching the fabric of her elegant dress. "And it is Vale, yes. Are you having a pleasant evening?" Her tone was decidedly less inviting than Zin's, though it was not intentional. Her mood was clouding her judgement and made her feel as though she was teetering on the edge of a cliff, a slight breeze and she would be shoved off into an abyss.

    “Nice to meet you, Zinara,” Joren intoned in a husky baritone, extending his hand across the table to formally greet the woman. “I’m glad to hear that you’ve found enjoyment in them. When I started out, I never imagined anyone would want to read my books, but it’s truly amazing how a crazy whim of an idea has expanded across the globe to reach so many. I appreciate the kind words, thank you.”

    Zin took his hand and shook it firmly, though her expression had grown wary. Her initial sense of bewilderment had built up so suddenly that now it spilt over onto her face and she was unable to keep her uncertainty a secret. It shown even further when Vale at last reconnected with her spouse’s gaze, those bottomless eyes narrowing and asking one simple question. How?

    She pulled her glass towards her and downed the last gulp impatiently, knowing that she was still being visually examined and assuredly failing.

    Withdrawing his hand, the Doctor stepped back and gestured for his wife, gently taking her hand to lead her toward the table. “And this is my wife, Tera,” he radiated with a boyish grin, still clearly infatuated with her. “You may not see her much on camera, but she has been a tremendous help behind the scenes – my lifeline. She’s been with me from the very beginning.”

    Tera blushed slightly at her husband's proclamation, but still managed a soft smile. “A pleasure,” she replied with a polite nod.

    Despite the smile on his face and his outward show of affection, Joren seemed to shrink back a bit, responding to the very distinct ripple that surged through the Force in that moment. It had negative connotations, riddled with both strife and...regret? Maybe it could also be construed as disappointment. Either way, it was an interesting blend of emotions, all seemingly centered around Vale’s radiant presence; he realized she was making no effort to hide herself from him, almost as if she intended to prove a point.

    Had he done something wrong?

    That’s when he turned to face the dark-haired woman, idly noting her posture and expression. She appeared affable enough, but there was something about her tone when she addressed him that made him uneasy. It seemed to cast a dark shadow on her mood, plunging her Force signature into a murky haze. This was the response of a troubled soul, but he was having some difficulty discerning the source.

    To avoid any further conflict, the Doctor decided to play it safe until he had a more solid grasp of the situation.

    “We’re getting a late start, but yes, we enjoy it here,” he explained in response to her inquiry, making a sweeping gesture with his hand to indicate the broad terrace. “We try to come out once a month when they change out the shows down at the Highland; it’s become somewhat of a tradition for us.”

    He was referring to the Highland Theater, the old stone structure that stood for decades in the entertainment district. Tera had grown quite fond of the theater over the years and had even dabbled in some acting herself. This was a chance for her to observe and improve her skill. Of course, it helped that the proprietor enjoyed their company and was all too happy to accommodate the couple whenever they arrived at the venue for a show.

    “We were here just a few weeks ago, but…” he shrugged after a brief pause, “I suppose you never need an excuse for a date night.” He chuckled lightly, hoping that it would help diffuse some of the awkward tension.

    It was at this point that Vale and Zinara’s waiter finally chose to return to their table to check on their drinks, asking if anyone would be needing a refill.

    “Yes.”

    “No.”

    Both women answered simultaneously, leaving the waiter a bit perturbed and eyeing the Graal’s with interest while removing a few plates. Vale was feeling panicked, Zin looking like she was a relentless detective that had just begun a murder investigation.

    “Uh, speaking of which…” Joren continued after clearing his throat. He then angled his chin and nodded toward their place-settings. “I’m sure you would like to get back to your dinner. I didn’t mean to intrude; I only wanted to touch base after everything we witnessed today. I can’t imagine that it was a coincidence that we would later show up at the same restaurant together. The Force certainly works in mysterious ways.”

    Zinara shoved her chair back and stood barely before Joren had finished speaking, grasping the waiter’s forearm as he made to leave. “Why don’t you two join us? We have yet to see the dessert menu and well, the more company the better.” She requested with a sweet smile, though Vale could practically see the gears turning in Zin’s mind.

    She opened her mouth to protest, surely the couple had their show to get to or something far more meaningful and fancy to do than sitting with the two of them to eat…

    "They probably want to be alone, Zin..." she tried, nodding knowingly up at Joren as if to relay an apology for her wife's unwarranted invitation.

    Things were escalating quickly, and for his part, Joren merely shifted his weight awkwardly and looked away with a scoff. What he wouldn’t give to simply slip away into the crowd and allow the two women to hash out their differences in peace. Judging by the growing rift in the Force, he had apparently caused enough trouble for one evening.

    His gaze turned surreptitiously toward the steady flow of patrons around the dining area, already searching for a way out. “I, uh...actually, she’s right.” He winced almost as soon as the words left his mouth, realizing how crude that sounded. It forced him to hastily backtrack in an effort to correct his error. “Well, uh, I mean...I didn’t--we have a busy night ahead of us. We must really--”

    Also,” she continued anyway and speaking now in a more drawn out tone, her lightly accented voice usually becoming heavier when she became upset or frustrated. “I simply must hear how the two of you seem to know each other. A man of your status and,” Her eyes slid down to Vale who, upon detecting the stirrings of anger in her wife, had forgotten to breathe. “…a female officer in the Nouane Armed Forces. Very different backgrounds… what is that saying, babe? ‘As the Force wills it’?”

    "The Will of the Force," she corrected quickly, shifting in her chair to face the Graal's fully. "Please, enjoy your night. We do not want to be the ones intruding."

    Tera, sensing that things were about to reach a climax, stepped forward and hooked her arm through Joren’s. “Thank you, I think that would be best,” she conveyed with a tight smile. “Come on, Joren, if we don’t sit down and order soon, we’ll never make the theater.”

    “One minute, hon,” he waved her off, even as she tried to lead him away from the table. This denial caused another spike in the Force as his wife became increasingly more frustrated with the situation. And honestly, Joren couldn’t blame her. What had begun as an innocent meeting between ‘co-workers’ had rapidly spiraled into a bitter argument.

    He silently berated himself for not getting a more accurate read on the situation earlier. It was becoming more apparent as their conversation progressed that Vale’s training was a point of contention between her and her wife. Did Zinara not agree with Vale’s decision to pursue the life of a Protector? Did Vale fail to keep her informed? It was hard to denote the cause at this point, but Joren knew that if he had been more receptive to these specific pathways, he could’ve prevented this embarrassing outcome. As such, he felt obligated to make amends before he carried on with his evening.

    “Vale,” Joren began evenly, his blue eyes seeking her face and holding firm. “I would like to offer my apologies, I didn’t realize…” He trailed off with a heavy sigh, his gaze wandering back toward Zinara with a regretful smile.

    “If there’s anything I can do…?”

    Joren seemed to be catching on at last and for that, Vale was grateful. Though her chest was burning with embarrassment, shame, and most of all guilt, knowing it was too late - the damage had been done by no one else but her. She brought a hand up to her forehead, exasperated as Tera Graal made her exit, obviously uncomfortable and wanting nothing more to do with this scene she had inadvertently created.

    "You're a Protector, aren't you," Zin blurted matter-of-fact before he could follow his wife. Her eyes bore into the author as several heads at nearby tables began to take notice of the small group, the waiter prying himself free and making for the safety of the kitchens.

    Joren halted in his pursuit of his wife and noticeably cringed when Zinara made her boisterous accusation against him. For a woman of such small stature, she certainly had a lasting effect. He found himself cowering under her scrutinizing gaze as he glanced clumsily over his shoulder, almost as if she had divulged some dark secret that he did not want their curious onlookers to overhear.

    Of course, he couldn’t be certain if the Protectors even meant anything to the average citizen anymore, but he didn’t want to take any chances. That’s how rumors get started, especially for someone with his reputation and status.

    Spreading his hands passively to admit his guilt, Joren began to backpedal.

    "We should talk about this at home," Vale responded, joining the others in standing before hastily leaving payment on the table without knowing what was owed - she left beyond what was sensible. "I'm so sorry, Joren..."

    The Doctor merely shrugged, resigning himself to whatever fate he deserved for instigating this unfortunate scene. “It’s fine, really, but I still think that I should be the one to--”

    "And you..." Here it was, Vale knew. That moment she had been ridiculous to think she could avoid. "You went back. After everything. I can see it all over you now, I don't know how I missed it. You're a lot better at lying than I ever would have guessed..."

    "Let me explain, at home...please," Vale begged in a whisper though Zin hadn't bothered to keep the conversation solely between them. People were clearly listening intently at this point.

    "So you don't deny it."

    Biting her lip, she took a deep breath that caught in her throat. There were so many eyes on her. "I.. do not..."

    A tear fell away from her wife's eye and she stifled a cracked sob. She looked like she had been struck physically, Vale's heart twisting as she tried to reach for her with a hand. She stepped away. "I apologize, Dr. Graal, for... my behavior." Zin gathered herself, smoothing the front of her dress and wiping her damp cheek. "I wish meeting you had been under... better circumstances." She straightened and offered him a respectful bow, then began to walk to the exit.

    Pressing his lips together firmly, Joren acknowledged the woman’s plea with a curt nod. He might have offered her some kind of consolation for making a mess of things, but he ultimately decided that it was probably best for him to remain silent. She had already displayed a quick temper, and he didn’t want to aggravate her further.

    If the opportunity presented itself, perhaps he should discuss it with Vale at a later date.

    As if on cue, his blue eyes shifted to seek out the other woman still standing stiffly behind the table.

    Vale glanced at Joren but took off after her, catching her wrist and readying some sort of explanation... apologize profusely, beg for forgiveness, anything.

    "Wait! Let me talk to you."

    She whirled on her, nearly causing them to crash into one another at the center of the terrace. It had grown oppressively silent.

    "Honesty, Vale. It was in our kriffing vows. How could you? Especially about this." Zin spat, yanking her hand away. She was fuming and Vale cowed under her rage. For all the ways she wished she could describe why she had returned to the temple, just then she had no words.

    "Do not follow me home." And her wife carried on her way, storming around several more tables and pushing through the small crowd of people waiting to be sat, disappearing into the night. In her wake was a calamitous mixture of emotions that were impossible to entangle, so Vale didn't bother trying. All she knew was how much of a coward she had been and how it broke her to cause Zinara any harm, and yet she had been the reason for the worst of it.

    At a loss for what to do and where to go, Vale simply made her way back to her table with the breathtaking views, not truly seeing any of it. She took her seat again and sunk back, exhausted as everyone around her went back to their meals and meaningless chatter. She couldn't even be sure if Joren was still hanging around, shutting herself down to the currents of the Force and simply focusing inward on the hollow feeling left deep in her heart - torn in two.

    TAG: @QueenSabe7; @Sinrebirth
     
  11. Sinrebirth

    Sinrebirth Mod-Emperor of the EUC, Lit, RPF and SWC star 9 Staff Member Manager

    Registered:
    Nov 15, 2004
    IC: The Master
    Outside the clock-tower

    Dunkeel and Vydra were practice-sparring whilst philosophising about what the future Order should look like. Making it so that they did not notice him slip out was a simple enough task, because he had sensed the disturbance.

    Vale.

    He left the clock-tower from a window, fluttering to the floor and landing with his hands clasped behind his back. He ignored the surprise of passerby’s. Superhero landing, it was not. He had tracked Vale since that first night, since the Force had filled with conflict... and gone right into his next meeting with Zas’tel. There were a few loose ends to push into motion, after all.

    Truths to tell.

    He stopped, looking at her with concern. He had another appointment to make, yet, but he would be there soon enough. He did not ask, or imply, or placate. He simply stared at her from behind his hood, wanting her to speak first and dictate the direction of the conversation. He would not offer her solace or emotion until she decided how this would start.

    He desperately wanted to see if her Forcesaber had abandoned the precarious balance it had two weeks ago, or not. But he could not do that. He dare not.

    TAG: @QueenSabe7


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  12. HanSolo29

    HanSolo29 Manager Emeritus + Official Star Wars Artist star 7 VIP - Former Mod/RSA

    Registered:
    Apr 13, 2001
    From Before: Part III

    IC: Dr. Joren Graal
    Entertainment District, Nouane City

    In the wake of the tumultuous storm that had encapsulated both women as they parted ways, Joren found the opening he so desperately needed and slipped back into the quiet bustle of the restaurant to find his wife. He felt raw and ashamed over the role he had played this evening, the Force still buzzing with the undercurrents of what had just transpired. His own negligence had potentially caused irreparable damage to Vale and her partner, not to mention their continued alliance as Protectors of the Light. He idly wondered if she would even carry on with her training after this. Would Zinara allow her to do so?

    Those thoughts continued to cloud his mind when he finally found Tera leaning casually near the restaurant’s entrance, her arms crossed firmly atop her bulging abdomen. Her eyes had turned hard, and she pursed her lips as she ardently searched the area for her husband. Joren did not need the Force to recognize that she was upset; her body language was enough in this instance.

    Bracing himself, Joren approached her with an apologetic smile.

    “We need to head directly to the theater,” Tera announced without preamble, barely making eye contact after initially spotting him in the crowd. “I know it’ll be late, but we can grab a bite to eat afterwards. There’s plenty of places around that area. Otherwise, I hope you didn’t throw out those leftovers I was saving from the other night...”

    She didn’t wait for a reply. Instead, she turned on her heel and crossed the threshold to take the main path that led from the Bluewater Grill down to the sprawling entertainment district. Clenching his jaw, Joren hurried to keep pace, his feet shuffling against the stone walkway in his scramble. “Tera, I’m...I’m sorry about tonight, I didn’t--”

    Someone you know from work’?”

    Joren grimaced as she threw his earlier remark back in his face. “Well...yes,” he reiterated softly, his brow lifting marginally while he searched for the right explanation. “I met her at the Temple over the weekend. I only assumed that she had everything squared away. I didn’t know that she was hiding.”

    Tera’s shoulders heaved with a weary sigh. “I really wish you would be more careful with this sort of thing,” she lamented quietly, her emotions beginning to abate and stabilize through the intimate connection they shared in the Force. This sudden change – one he could have easily attributed to her mood swings under different circumstances – prompted Joren to slow and observe her carefully. “What if things had turned dangerous? That...Zinara, she had a wild look in her eye. I know you believe the Force protects you...protects us, but we still live in the real world and the Force can’t account for all possibilities. She could’ve hurt you...or worse.”

    He bit the inside of his lip, knowing that she was terribly wrong in her assessment, but he decided not to pursue it. Now was not the time to bait her into a spiritual debate. He was more interested in listening to her opinions and trying to come to an understanding; something else was troubling her. “What brought this on?”

    Stopping her forward progress, Tera turned abruptly to face him. “Your work associates,” she said simply, shaking her head. “They’re coming around more frequently, even tracking us down in public.” She hesitated a moment. “Vale wasn’t the only one tonight, Joren.”

    “What are you talking about?” He narrowed his eyes, moving close enough to take her hands in his own.

    Glancing down at their entwined fingers, Tera took a moment to simply breathe and relish in their closeness; to cherish and hold each other. Closing her eyes, she guided their hands over her belly to allow him to feel the tiny life force that was growing there, becoming stronger every day. She then lifted them up to caress the smoothness of her cheek. It didn’t seem to matter that they were on a well-worn path in the middle of one of the city’s most extravagant districts. Let them look, let them stare and gossip among themselves at this brazen display of affection. They were together and their love would endure.

    In this embrace, time felt infinite, but finally Tera made the first move and disengaged from Joren’s grasp. With a sad smile, she reached into her purse and produced a folded sheet of flimsi. “When you were speaking to Vale after I left, a young man – hell, he was practically a kid, crossed my path in the atrium and slipped this to me. He said you would know what it means.”

    Joren swallowed the lump in his throat and gingerly took the handwritten note from between his wife’s fingers. “You read it, then?”

    “I only glanced at it,” she confessed with a small shrug. For a moment, she seemed content to leave it at that, but then she worked her jaw as another thought crossed her mind, her brow now knit together with concern. “This...is about the Protectors, isn’t it? They want you back…”

    Unraveling the note, Joren remained silent as he analyzed the scrawled text. There was nothing exceptional about the handwriting itself; it was relatively nondescript. It was only after the Doctor reached out with his feelings in an attempt to identify any useful clues that he felt a lingering presence. It was familiar and welcoming...and strong in the Force.

    Bypass the Clock Tower and report to the hillside upon your return...and do enjoy your recess.

    The Master.

    A wry grin spread slowly over his features. So, it wasn’t bad news, simply a set of directions. That was certainly odd...and yet, did he expect anything less from the Master? Even when he was away from the Clock Tower and the old man’s direct influence, he still had a peculiar way of handling things; of reaching out and making himself known across the expanse that separated them. In a sense, that was the sign of a great teacher, and Joren admired and respected him for that.

    “It’s fine, hon,” he relayed in a more favorable tone, folding the flimsi and tucking it into the breast pocket of his sport coat for safe keeping. “Not for another two weeks.”

    Tera offered a wan smile, but she still appeared anxious. “And then what?”

    “And then I head back to the Tower like any other weekend,” he tried to reassure her, crossing back into her personal space to place both hands upon her shoulders. “I spend a little time up there, conduct my studies, and return home to be with you...it’s the usual routine. No surprises, I promise.”

    “No surprises?” She canted her head, trying to gauge his expression.

    “Mmm, you have my word.” Joren leaned in the rest of the way and planted a kiss on her forehead. “Who knows, maybe I can even convince the Master to allow you to tag along one of these times. It’s an exhilarating experience, Tera, you’ll get a lot out of it.”

    She scoffed, reaching up to lightly trace his bottom lip with her index finger. “You know what else is an exhilarating experience, Dr. Graal?” Before he could answer, she raised up on her toes and silenced him with a kiss.

    “Mmfph?”

    “The theater,” she stated matter-of-factly, pulling away to slap him lightly on the thigh. “Come on, we’ll be late.”

    “Of course, Mrs. Graal,” Joren laughed. “Whatever you say.”

    TAG: @Sinrebirth
     
  13. Jerjerrod-Lennox

    Jerjerrod-Lennox Jedi Grand Master star 7

    Registered:
    Mar 9, 2005
    IC: Vydra Delomeux
    Location: The Clock Temple, Nouane


    Compared to his weapon which harked back to a more ancient age, the Chistori’s weapon positively looked wicked. A fang was protruding from the end which gave it an animal like appearance.

    "You are a funny one. Aren't you? Not pulling them out when we now do so during common philosophizing."

    Before Vydra could reply or even think of a reply the Chistori charged forward, letting out an animal roar before trying basically to cut Vydra in half. He hoped that the Chistori’s saber was not set to “kill”. Vydra brought his left leg back to steady himself and then brought his blade down to block the attack before trying to move the Chistori’s blade away.

    Vydra of course like the others had practiced with the Master’s sword however this was totally different. Trying to practice with a live weapon so to speak was a whole different kettle of fish. He resolved to keep his defensive stance. Perhaps the other would learn that attack was always not the answer. He doubted it though.

    "We should build it as this nest was built! Find and nurture, grow and accept. Defend and if needed prune ourselves if one strays too far!"

    Well this is interesting…..

    With all Vydra had learned and from what he had gleaned from his Truth he was analyzing every word, every movement of the other students to pick up anything that was amiss, to make sure that all that had been foretold did not come to pass.

    The Chistori’s comment of “pruning” sounded interesting. Was this a comment brone of the dark? Or was a comment designed only to weed out the wheat from the chaff?.

    Vydra kept his defensive stance both hands gripping his saber. He was going to try for a one handed grip but with the first ferocious attack he knew he had to keep a good grip on his saber in order to block these animistic attacks.

    “It is true that we should not forget the nuances of combat, but combat should be used as a last resort when all is lost and our lives are threatened. Combat is a useful tool but should only be used if necessary, after all we are keepers of the peace not just soldiers that defend the Light”

    He shook his head though “Your comment about pruning concerns me. Perhaps some people are not meant to be Protectors that is true, but should we not be inclusive to all? To test them to see who can handle the pressures of becoming a Protector? And if someone does go astray we just prune them?” he shook his head again “That way lies the darkness, if they do lead themselves astray then we should help them and only prune when all is lost”

    He wanted to gauge the Chistori’s reaction to this one. He was essentially playing devil's advocate as it were.

    “Knowledge should be consumed by all, to be protected at all costs. To defend at all costs, not to control the Force as if it is theirs solely to command. We should ground ourselves in reality to keep ourselves of what is happening in the world outside in order to protect it to the fullest, not hide from it like it is nothing to us.”

    He kept his stance blade at the ready. This was his first saber battle after all and he knew it wasn't going to be some walk in the park.

    “If we fight against each other then the darkness will have won. Perhaps the chaff should be cut if we stray too far. But only if the situation becomes so dire that darkness could prevail”.

    TAG: @Mitth_Fisto , @Sinrebirth
     
  14. Mitth_Fisto

    Mitth_Fisto Force Ghost star 6

    Registered:
    Sep 29, 2005
    IC: Dunkeel
    Clock-Temple

    The block and shove away from the other student was saddening. He had left himself vulnerable as well as pushing an attack and the other had not exploited his weakness in it. It showed the blinded nature of the defense, he would have to show the other the error of his ways.

    “It is true that we should not forget the nuances of combat, but combat should be used as a last resort when all is lost and our lives are threatened. Combat is a useful tool but should only be used if necessary, after all we are keepers of the peace not just soldiers that defend the Light”

    Stepping around the other he batted playfully with his blade, making sure that he was constantly tapping the others defenses, giving him time to say his peace before he would strike again. Sad thing was Protectors were soldier supreme. Look to the north, look to the walls. Military designed defenses of war and preparations for sacrifice. If one was lost they were living in a city that literally had fall back positions, fallback walls. This one spoke as if they were beat cops to patrol the streets in their districts, a simple tribe mentality instead of defend the whole from the darkness.

    He shook his head though “Your comment about pruning concerns me. Perhaps some people are not meant to be Protectors that is true, but should we not be inclusive to all? To test them to see who can handle the pressures of becoming a Protector? And if someone does go astray we just prune them?” he shook his head again “That way lies the darkness, if they do lead themselves astray then we should help them and only prune when all is lost”

    Dunkeel shook his head and growled low at this. It was sad. Frustrating. Childlike. In one way he wanted to protect the others sheltered ideals and on the same tooth he wanted to shatter them. To wake the other from complacency only the other had more to say.

    “Knowledge should be consumed by all, to be protected at all costs. To defend at all costs, not to control the Force as if it is theirs solely to command. We should ground ourselves in reality to keep ourselves of what is happening in the world outside in order to protect it to the fullest, not hide from it like it is nothing to us.”

    Finally something he bowed his head to, something of wisdom.

    “If we fight against each other then the darkness will have won. Perhaps the chaff should be cut if we stray too far. But only if the situation becomes so dire that darkness could prevail”.

    Dunkeel finally spoke. "You make no good sense until the end. I know your kind pampers their young, coddles, raising them up at your own loss. Loss is good, hardship is good. Senseless danger is not. To my people I am a disgrace and something to either be killed or scorned, I was to be killed, now to be scorned as I am too hard to kill. Knowledge and defense are good for the nest, sometimes that defense means letting one leave or striking down one that will not listen to reason. We are not keepers of the peace, we are Guardians of the Light, we are the line in the sand. The First and Last bulwark of knowledge and Light. Peacekeepers are the keepers of law and order, justice. We are concerned of such things, we aid such things, but we are not them. Others shall sit in watch for the thief in the market, others will hunt the burglars and breakers. We study and grow knowledge, we secure the battlements, we prepare to Protect!" with that loud statements close he stepped in and aimed to drive his blade as though to hit the young mans path to children, then if he tried to block and bat he push to the side to open a path, to step inside the others guard and bump his neck with his snout if able.

    TAG: @Jerjerrod-Lennox , @Sinrebirth
     
  15. QueenSabe7

    QueenSabe7 RPF Awards Host star 6 VIP - Game Host

    Registered:
    Mar 23, 2001
    IC: Vale Sera
    Someplace close to the Temple, Protector grounds

    Vale had been wandering aimlessly, she wasn't sure for how long and had not bothered to keep track. Hours, days, a week... the Force had clouded her thoughts and surroundings so heavily that she couldn't recall seeing anything clearly - there and gone in a blur. She was present but not, awake but not. Feeling... but not feeling at all. The night of the dinner seemed an eternity before, though she knew through the raw, bleeding wound on her soul that it was only too recent that her wife had uncovered her lie. The only lie that had the strength to tear them down and destroy them... the one she had chose to tell.

    "Oh gods," she whined with a grimace, sinking to her knees then and there - where was where? - her hands clutching at her chest. She dug her fingers into her skin, kneading them harshly into her breastbone as if to reach her racing heart beneath and wrench it from her body to keep it from aching further. The emotional pain had manifested into the physical realm as it previously had on occasion, though this agony was consistent. Always there, never abating and sometimes seizing her so unexpectedly that it would steal her breathe away. Such as now.

    So much so that she did not even sense him coming, only once he arrived just before her to peer down from the shadows of his cowl.

    "Master," Vale whispered in a gasp, dropping her hands to her sides and craning her neck back to look up at him after a quick moment to gather herself. She had kept up appearances at work well enough but knew, having been staying at a cheap inner-city motel and barely paying notice to how she might outwardly look, that she would appear disheveled and not at all as put together as she normally would be. Her insides churned as she realized, from some distant place, how weak she was. How broken and vulnerable, not at all the person she knew herself to be. And she had been so certain only a few weeks prior...

    "I fear I have lost my way," she added softly, trying to muster something close to a smile that most likely looked like anything but. Vale looked away, suddenly registering just where it was she was meeting her mentor - quite close to the Clock-Temple. "I have no idea how I ended up back here... but I always do, don't I."

    It wasn't a question and she expected no answer, mostly due to assuming The Master would vanish from sight as quickly as he had come into it. But that aside, her eyes traced over the large structure as it beckoned from nearby, already giving into the truth that she wouldn't be leaving the grounds that night.

    TAG: @Sinrebirth
     
  16. Sinrebirth

    Sinrebirth Mod-Emperor of the EUC, Lit, RPF and SWC star 9 Staff Member Manager

    Registered:
    Nov 15, 2004
    Prologue

    Before Lesson Three

    IC: The Master

    Outside the Clock-Tower

    "... but I always do, don't I."

    With his arms behind his back, the Master paused. Vale was... well, she was here. He remained still, for a long, long, moment. A handful of bystanders were evident, but most moved on, largely because the Master reached out and gently turned them to go. They were witnessing a private moment, made public by fate, by circumstance, by design.

    The Master wanted to know just what that design was. She knew she would stay tonight. That she needed to. In truth, it was practical. There were ten chambers in the clock-tower, and space for them. Some of the apprentices came and went, and others stayed. The Master's chambers were his mess of a teaching room. He never slept, after all. It was not necessary, when one had the Force.

    He allowed the Force to connect them; an outstretched hand, in the mental space between them. She had answered her own question, in many ways. She had lost her way, and she needed to find it again, and she kept coming back to him - to her purpose. She would no longer find it with her wife. While the Master would be forever grateful that Vale's partner had encouraged her to explore her gift, Vale was strong in the Force... the longer she remained divided the more dangerous it would be for her.

    The Master filled their bond with support, with his belief in her, with his confidence that she would be fine when she found her place. He reassured her, buoyed her, entreated her to carry on into the future. Then he simply spoke as if nothing else had happened - as if she was not what she was, but what she could be. "The others are sparring; can you bring them to the hilltop when they are done? They are discussing what the Order should look like in the future. Where people should fit. Dunkeel may have just used the word pruning to discuss their responsibilities; Vydra has pointed out that violence is a last resort only." He shrugged. "They might need reminding about their real life responsibilities, who knows? Dunkeel is a stronger duelist than Vydra... I hope might doesn't mean right in the philosophical arena!"

    He did not verbalize the moment between them; it was private. He softly erased memory of what had happened to any on-lookers, because it was precious to Vale. Her weakest moment would be the moment she grew stronger for it - that she would find her place between the four Protectors as the one who held them together, for they would be her family. He had no need to make her feel humiliated, and he would do what he had always said he would.

    Protect her until she was ready.

    With that, he turned and merged with the crowd, vanishing.

    TAG: @QueenSabe7, @Mitth_Fisto, @Jerjerrod-Lennox (please continue your debate-duel), @Kev-Mas_Colcha (outstanding tag), @HanSolo29 (combo)
     
  17. Kev-Mas_Colcha

    Kev-Mas_Colcha Jedi Grand Master star 5

    Registered:
    Dec 15, 2002
    IC: Zas'tel
    Markets

    Zas'tel went off on his errands almost immediately, leaving for the market to collect the things he needed. He wasn't quite used to running errands this way. Usually he just stole whatever he needed, so doing more legitimate shopping felt odd, and even wrong to him. It made him uncomfortable.

    Talking to other sentients? Not for him. Obtaining the items he needed by fair exchange? Also not for him, but alas, he supposed this was all part of his training. He needed to learn to adapt to new ways of life. To better blend in if he couldn't just hide like he usually did.

    Then he felt something. Something else that made him feel uncomfortable. The Force sung out with tendrils of malice. It felt cold and bitter, filled with hate and murderous intentions. Zas'tel's instincts told him to let it be, and avoid harm by staying out of it, but something else - something that he couldn't really trace, urged him to act. To seek it out, and prevent whoever or whatever it was from carrying out their dark deeds.

    So he took a break from his shopping, and slipped away into the shadows, chasing after whatever it was that he felt, reaching out to the Force to help him stalk his prey. He didn't quite know what exactly it was he was chasing after, but he trusted the Force to show him what it was and where it was. Today he wasn't just hunting for supplies. He was hunting a hunter.

    Tag: @Sinrebirth
     
  18. Sinrebirth

    Sinrebirth Mod-Emperor of the EUC, Lit, RPF and SWC star 9 Staff Member Manager

    Registered:
    Nov 15, 2004
    IC: Fav’pel
    Market District; edge

    He was hungry.

    He was tired.

    He hurt.

    They had beaten him, stripped him, taken what he had. His family had refused to accept him back, for he had long turned his back on them and attempted to what they had disparagingly referred to as humanise himself; to integrate. He had argued with his parents as a pup, that they needed to do more - not to settle in their carved-out niche in the City.

    Much of the nonhuman parts of the City were segregated into groups of their own creation. The military that Vale served within was more often than not deployed to keep them from fighting along their ‘borders’ than against an external foe. Minor flare-ups - every grouping of individuals had its radicals or dingbat element. The overwhelming majority of the time each subculture of the City was peaceful - but with so many groupings it only needed one to have a odd issue here and there that it seemed as if there was always an issue.

    But Nouane had been multicultural for so many dozens of millennia that nobody ever really noticed. Of course, nobody ever really tried to solve the issue, either.

    There were groups which wanted them to dispense with the informal borders, and Fay’pel had been one of those who moved east. He had also been one of those who had been met a dingbat radical element...

    ... but one within humanity.

    They had clearly been looking for trouble, tracking down nonhumans in the district. They had found it - the mild-mannered worker who loved his job and the freedom he had from the nest.

    But after the attack, everything changed. The yobs had vanished, leaving him, and he had been transferred to the nearest hospital for his kind; back in the south. But then he’d had no money or means to support his bills, had been released from hospital before he was fully healed - and he lost his place in the east. Coming back to the south had been humiliated, and his den-mother had increased the feeling by refusing to help.

    He’d ended up on the streets.

    He’d ended up exhausted.

    He’d ended up hungry.

    He’d been betrayed by the society he had fought for. So he was no longer apart of it.

    He would feed, and he would do so upon a human. It would be simple; he was the same species as Zas’tel, and he could hunt.

    But the Force led the Protector to him as he loomed from the corner of the alleyway, ready to snack the boy-child, who was more focused on his datapad than anything else, headphones in and indolent in his awareness.

    Any moment now.

    TAG: @Kev-Mas_Colcha


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  19. Jerjerrod-Lennox

    Jerjerrod-Lennox Jedi Grand Master star 7

    Registered:
    Mar 9, 2005
    IC: Vydra Delomeux
    Location: The Clock Temple, Nouane


    It looked like he had managed to say something that the Chistori had acknowledged which was a win in Vydra’s opinion.

    As a librarian you were used to all sorts of opinions on different topics. The truth was always hard to distinguish from the facts. But it was always good to hear all sides of the story as it were. Vydra was of course voicing his opinion and he Chistori his. And he respected that even if he thought some bits of it were in his opinion wrong.

    What he and the Master had discovered together were for their eyes only. It was just up to him to see if he could save it all.

    The Chistori was good in attack Vydra noted, batting away almost playfully with his blade, testing Vydra’s defence. Vydra tried to keep up the defensive web he was weaving meeting the blade blow for blow. His dueling was one of his weak spots and of course the Master would try to improve his skills for the future. To become a warrior for when the time comes.

    Even though he was more into the philosophy and knowledge side of things he wanted to improve his combat skills. Just in case he had to use his blade like now. If he didn't learn he would be cut down, just like that. And his very short career as a Protector would be over.

    And how his family would LOVE that.

    Vydra had moved back into position this time with his blade over his head pointing backwards his hilt facing the Chistori in a position the ancient sword masters called “The Guard of the Hawk”. It was something he had read about and decided to try as part of his defensive strategy.

    The Chistori continued.

    "You make no good sense until the end. I know your kind pampers their young, coddles, raising them up at your own loss. Loss is good, hardship is good. Senseless danger is not. To my people I am a disgrace and something to either be killed or scorned, I was to be killed, now to be scorned as I am too hard to kill. Knowledge and defense are good for the nest, sometimes that defense means letting one leave or striking down one that will not listen to reason. We are not keepers of the peace, we are Guardians of the Light, we are the line in the sand. The First and Last bulwark of knowledge and Light. Peacekeepers are the keepers of law and order, justice. We are concerned of such things, we aid such things, but we are not them. Others shall sit in watch for the thief in the market, others will hunt the burglars and breakers. We study and grow knowledge, we secure the battlements, we prepare to Protect!"

    The Chistori immediately and not surprisingly went for attack again this time attacking somewhere...rather ungentlemanly.

    Vydra immediately swung down from on high, swinging his blade down and below, this time not batting away but making sure his blade and the Chistori’s were locked and hopefully sparing a jab into somewhere painful. Mostly it was so he could get a word in.

    He felt a little sad for the Chistori, it seemed he had had a hard life compared to Vydra’s. No wonder he wanted to attack all the time, it seemed his frustration and anger were all being put into his blade. If Vydra was black to his old self he would have brandished his blade with a flourish, now it was totally different.

    “It is such a shame you have had to endure all this in your life” Vydra said sincerely “In fact no-one should endure such pain, to be somebody that your people despise and scorn is a disgrace, you should be celebrated, should be loved in life. I am quite lucky to have a family that loves me, perhaps they do not see as I do the way of being a Protector but they are coming around. It is a shame your people do not. I know that I'm not just doing this for the good of the galaxy, it’s so I can protect my family and those I consider friends.”

    He kept both hands on his blade trying to keep the lock still and to hold it as long as he could.

    “Again you make some good points regarding knowledge, defence not so much. Yet again you speak of striking people down that don’t listen to reason. Again I reiterate, that should be used only as a last resort. Also your notes about being a Protector, your logic is sound regarding this. However if we insulate ourselves we don’t see the bigger picture, we don’t see what lies ahead what the future may hold. I’m not saying we are all seeing, but we have to be grounded in reality, to face the threats that come or that may potentially come. We must not make imaginary threats so we can suddenly be prepared for war and a threat does not materialize.”

    He prepared himself for another potential attack if it came “Peace is always connected to the light, if we don’t have peace then darkness will reign, the Force will not be balanced. Justice, law and order create peace, without it there would be chaos”

    TAG: @Mitth_Fisto , @Sinrebirth
     
  20. Mitth_Fisto

    Mitth_Fisto Force Ghost star 6

    Registered:
    Sep 29, 2005
    IC: Dunkeel
    Clock-Tower

    It is such a shame you have had to endure all this in your life” Vydra said sincerely “In fact no-one should endure such pain, to be somebody that your people despise and scorn is a disgrace, you should be celebrated, should be loved in life. I am quite lucky to have a family that loves me, perhaps they do not see as I do the way of being a Protector but they are coming around. It is a shame your people do not. I know that I'm not just doing this for the good of the galaxy, it’s so I can protect my family and those I consider friends.

    Vydra kept both hands on his blade trying to keep the lock still and to hold it as long as he could. Meanwhile Dunkeel kept his one arm flexed and taunt, forcing that lock to continue, letting the other say his peace before he did anything in response.

    Again you make some good points regarding knowledge, defense not so much. Yet again you speak of striking people down that don’t listen to reason. Again I reiterate, that should be used only as a last resort. Also your notes about being a Protector, your logic is sound regarding this. However if we insulate ourselves we don’t see the bigger picture, we don’t see what lies ahead what the future may hold. I’m not saying we are all seeing, but we have to be grounded in reality, to face the threats that come or that may potentially come. We must not make imaginary threats so we can suddenly be prepared for war and a threat does not materialize.

    Vydra prepared himself for another potential attack if it came “Peace is always connected to the light, if we don’t have peace then darkness will reign, the Force will not be balanced. Justice, law and order create peace, without it there would be chaos

    He had had enough, bringing his other arm down to low grip he decided something different was needed. Using the blade he pushed hard with both arms, putting his back into a hard push, either to shove the other back by his own blade or to push the others blade so hard that Vydra would have his own blade forced into himself.

    "By law and order I watched my mother eat my sister alive. By law and order I have joined in cleansing that saw myself eating nearly every species on this planet sentient or not that dared to wander in too close during the time of nesting. By peace I have done all of this and never do you think of it." Whether successful or not with the prior attack he pulled back his blade and began an attack of rapid swings toward Vydra's sides, batting away at the other in a rapid hard pace. "If we never kill those that we lose if they are too dark, and try too long to save them, we will create our own Rakata! Did you not pay attention to the lessons? To the warning? As to the future we already have that in hand, ready to be viewed and studied. We do not need to prepare in vain, we need to prepare because we know what is coming, we know what needs Protecting!" His deep roaring voice was pleading this, crying it out at the last. He hoped deeply that this one was not the one, he nearly begged it into the Force and into himself, Don't let him be the one.

    TAG: @Jerjerrod-Lennox , @Sinrebirth
     
  21. Jerjerrod-Lennox

    Jerjerrod-Lennox Jedi Grand Master star 7

    Registered:
    Mar 9, 2005
    IC: Vydra Delomeux
    Location: The Clock Temple, Nouane


    Yes, I think he is angry…

    Vydra was shoved back by the ferocity of the Chistori’s move. He managed to recompose himself though. He hoped eventually the Chistori would wear himself out with his ferocity and then Vydra could strike a surprise. But in all, Vydra wanted to test his defensive skills to see how long he could last before his defenses were breached.

    "By law and order I watched my mother eat my sister alive. By law and order I have joined in cleansing that saw myself eating nearly every species on this planet sentient or not that dared to wander in too close during the time of nesting. By peace I have done all of this and never do you think of it."

    And off the Chistori went again, batting away furiously trying to get through Vydra’s defense. Vydra was trying hard to keep up but the Chistori continued not letting Vydra get a word in.

    "If we never kill those that we lose if they are too dark, and try too long to save them, we will create our own Rakata! Did you not pay attention to the lessons? To the warning? As to the future we already have that in hand, ready to be viewed and studied. We do not need to prepare in vain, we need to prepare because we know what is coming, we know what needs Protecting!"

    He really has no clue does he.

    Obviously the Chistori must have been told something as well and Vydra was beginning to wonder what was going on. Was the Master using this debate as a test? Did he have something else in mind? Was the Master going to prune basically those who were not good enough?. It did worry Vydra for a time that he wasn't good enough, that his inexperience in the Force would catch up with him at some point. Dueling with a sword was one thing but dueling with a blade was something else. And with the duel continuing as well as the debate one thought entered Vydra’s mind. Even though he had found out his Truth this thought was creeping in.

    What if the Master is pitting us against one another. That this Chistori is weeding out the chaff?. That this is my test to see if I am worthy to wield the blade?. It was concerning him and he was getting overwhelmed with everything that was happening.

    Keep your concentration here and now Vydra. Otherwise this Chistori will literally eat your head off.

    After the series of attacks, not all of them as successfully as he liked he moved back into the “Hawk” position once again. Tim to get his last words in.

    “It is understandable that you are angry, to be angry is a normal emotion. However, anger breeds darkness. It seems you channel your anger into attacks, but with your attacking style you leave gaps, gaps that could be exploited by someone who could sense you anger and use it against you. Yes I may be too defensive, but it seems fitting for me, we all have different styles that fit us, but we can always adapt and change”.

    He then narrowed his eyes at the Chistori giving him a stare that was completely focused and more than a little annoyed.

    “But DO NOT think that I am blind to the future that I don’t know what is coming over the horizon” he knew he couldn't mention anything lest it give the game away so to speak “I know what needs protecting, I know what needs to be done. But it seems you think that I have no idea what is going on, that I basically just sit in my room meditating about nothing. I have a job to do, I know what has to be done to protect this galaxy and everyone within. And by all that is sacred I will do it or die”

    TAG: @Mitth_Fisto , @Sinrebirth
     
  22. Mitth_Fisto

    Mitth_Fisto Force Ghost star 6

    Registered:
    Sep 29, 2005
    IC: Dunkeel
    Clock-Tower

    At the last the other spoke and for now the concept seemed dropped with the other giving no clear resolution. He could only hope he dropped a thought for later, that the other would grow in time, but the best was the last. A job to do. That meant so much to him to hear, to see, to feel.

    It was with a sigh and release that he deflated as the other spoke their last words. His passion and vigor bled away into the Force leaving serene peace as he went from brutal attacks to simply breathing. "You are not the one. Thank you."

    With that he raised his blade in salute and, demonstrating that the safety was on he marked his right arm. The burn and tingle that ran through his arm was liquid fire. It did not excite nor rile him, he visibly calmed even more. Settling as the cloud of all he had stirred up faded away. The saber being set to training mode had merely caused his arm to fall limp at his side and raising it to salute he walked calmly forward, left arm holding the blade up in the Hawk position to mirror the other. "You saw the gaps, that is good. But you never exploited them. Why?" he calmly asked with a hissing rasp as he proceeded in measured attack pattern now. Down from above to left shoulder, hoping to bounce off the others hilt back to guard and down again at the head. It was slow and steady though he was still tense and ready for something more vigorous.

    TAG: @Jerjerrod-Lennox , @Sinrebirth
     
  23. Kev-Mas_Colcha

    Kev-Mas_Colcha Jedi Grand Master star 5

    Registered:
    Dec 15, 2002
    IC: Zas'tel
    Market District; edge

    Zas'tel grimaced. He could relate to this guy's pain. He really could. The young Defel looked like he had really fallen upon hard times, and Zas'tel couldn't help but want to help him. Plus, this could be the opportunity to actually make a friend. His kind weren't too common on Nouane, and he was actually kind of excited to get the opportunity to meet another one. Someone to take under his wing and teach how to live off of the streets. He could already see him teaching him all about how to take advantage of being invisible to feed himself and to learn whatever new things his heart desired.

    He could make a difference. Maybe not just save one life, but two. He supposed that's the sort of thing the Master sometimes taught the Protectors about. He'd have an opportunity to put it into actual practice right here and right now.

    So he did.

    Lurking down the alleyway after him, he turned the corner and cut him off.

    "Hey pup, you doing alright? You look like you could use a friend. I can tell you're hurting. How about we talk things over with some dinner. I'll buy."

    Tag: @Sinrebirth
     
  24. QueenSabe7

    QueenSabe7 RPF Awards Host star 6 VIP - Game Host

    Registered:
    Mar 23, 2001
    IC: Vale Sera
    Near the Clock-Temple, Nouane

    Vale’s eyes remained on the shadowy outline of the temple in the near distance, rising high into the night sky like the beacon of light she always knew it to be.

    Home was always with her wife – she groaned here from the mere thought of Zinara, stifling a curse along with it – and the temple was always her sanctuary, but now… it was both of those things becoming one. It was a seamless transition of thought, she saw it clearly and as she already had known, this was where she truly, wholly, belonged. Vale had put off coming here since the incident, because in doing so would be admitting to herself that she had let go of one of her warring halves, that this choice was as final as a choice could be. But she couldn’t hold off any longer, so it was done.

    She drew her bloodshot eyes back up to the Master, semi-surprised to find him still standing over her. Though she could not see his face, the distinct sensation that he was examining her came through in his stature and in the Force. He wasn’t scrutinizing, that much she knew, but rather appreciating the state she was in and that after everything she had been through, she was still here. She did not turn away as before, she had come back here.

    A shuddering breath in and with it, warmth. Both physically and emotionally, the comforting ease of calm and stability trickled in over her more negative feelings. Vale managed a small, but grateful smile as her mind quieted and the pressure on her chest lifted. Thinking this a temporary balm, she didn’t resist the Light that filled her empty places and worked to mend the wounded parts. For those few moments, she was… herself.

    Thank you, she pushed through the connection that had been forged, passing along with it her genuine appreciation that the Master had come to her this night. Right when she needed him to. Despite the situation, she laughed softly at how he always seemed to just know.

    Vale climbed back to her feet, hesitantly, feeling somewhat woozy from lack of sleep and proper food. Her clothes were wrinkled and undone, but she paid them no mind and let the silence between them stretch on, no sense of awkwardness forming or a need to break into words. She simply waited, content in the renewed sense of self she had been given to grow upon – a seed to plant.

    "The others are sparring; can you bring them to the hilltop when they are done? They are discussing what the Order should look like in the future. Where people should fit…”

    She blinked as he starting speaking, a bit startled at the subject matter but also not at all surprised. She listened like a proper student would, grateful again for an intriguing distraction. These men and creatures she shared knowledge and powers with, they were incredibly important to her now more than ever, especially with what she had recently learned of herself. Her place in all this, it meant something only because of the Protectors as a unit, not as five singular beings. She needed them, and they would need her.

    Vale offered a nod in understanding and then a bow, sensing the Master pulling back from her. And indeed he did, turning to meld into the crowds she was just now realizing were there, disappearing from her view without further conversation. As the Nouane foot traffic encircled her, she reached her hands into her jacket pockets – the left closing around the cylindrical shaft of her newly constructed forcesaber and the right, brushing against another precious object she dare not bring out for all to see. Neither had left her side since she left the grounds two weeks prior and certainly wouldn’t now, now that she was returning…. Home.

    Carefully putting one foot in front of the other, Vale made her way along the avenue to the temple to seek out her fellow students. All the while, trying to ignore the cold chill of sadness that had begun to creep back into her heart and mind.

    TAG: @Sinrebirth
     
  25. QueenSabe7

    QueenSabe7 RPF Awards Host star 6 VIP - Game Host

    Registered:
    Mar 23, 2001
    IC: Vale Sera
    Clock-Temple, Nouane

    Vale had entered the temple once again, but without the same wonder and awe that she had experienced a few weeks prior. Feeling heavy and exhausted, it seemed her emotions couldn’t muster the energy required to feel that way again, to be excited or entirely pleased. Circumstances that had led to her being back were to blame, of course, but she would meditate on it all at a later time.

    Pausing by the large table on the bottom level, she lazily retied her hair into a loose knot at the base of her neck, smoothing out stray strands that wouldn’t behave without a proper wash. Her attire was basic and it didn’t bother her if she appeared unkempt to the others. Her appearance was not what truly mattered as a Protector.

    Locating a drinking basin in the room, she quickly filled a cup and drank deeply, relishing the soothing nature of the crisp water as it cooled her raw throat. Refilling it a second time, she placed it down and gathered herself, closing her eyes. Here Vale finally chose to reopen her mind to the ebb and flow of the wider Force for the first time since the dinner. She hadn’t shut it off completely, no she would never attempt such a thing – the very idea of it horrified her. This had been like it had simply been dialed down, dulled, dimmed. Her feelings had mostly been centered upon herself only, which was how she had been so thoroughly hollowed out with overwhelming sorrow and guilt. Penance paid for her betrayal.

    Now, the rush of returning to her normal senses was odd at first but it settled in no time at all, order restored. Immediately she picked up on the two semi-familiar signatures close by, intermingling with the calming vibes of the temple itself. There was a distinct hum of saber blades dancing about on the soundwaves that reached her ears, muffled voices as well. She followed them curiously, pulled in by a mixture of emotions that were level but rife with gentle conflict. Not an argument, but a meeting of minds.

    Coming upon Vydra and Dunkeel only a short walk later, Vale smiled softly from the corner of the room. She had stopped just after entering, not wanting to overstep and intrude in on their debate, but assuming they would have known she was coming all the same. Taking another welcome gulp of water, she leaned a shoulder against the wall and spoke, her voice raspy at first before evening out.

    “I apologize for interrupting, but we are to head to the hilltop at the Master’s request.” Watching them both, more so the chistori because of her previous knowledge of him, she smiled again, the expression much more inviting than it had been initially. “I hope you will fill me in along the way on what was being discussed so vigorously.”

    Recalling all her mentor had told her in their last official meeting before this night, a few pieces seemed to begin falling into place where others had been left broken. Like she was being remade.

    “I’d love to know,” Vale added expectantly, waiting for the others to make the first move to leave.

    TAGS: @Mitth_Fisto @Jerjerrod-Lennox @Sinrebirth