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Star Wars A Star Wars Story: Between Epitaphs

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

  1. Kev-Mas_Colcha

    Kev-Mas_Colcha Jedi Grand Master star 5

    Registered:
    Dec 15, 2002
    IC: Zas'tel
    Nouane, Hilltop

    Zas'tel had just finished up his shopping when called to the hilltop. Thus, when he arrived as he did now, he still carried the bag containing all of his goods. He quietly sat down crosslegged on the hilltop, which seemingly had nobody else on it.

    However, Zas'tel knew that he would not be called up here for no reason, and assumed that the Master would show up shortly..

    Tag: @Sinrebirth , @HanSolo29 , @Jerjerrod-Lennox , @QueenSabe7 , @Mitth_Fisto
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 18, 2019
  2. Mitth_Fisto

    Mitth_Fisto Force Ghost star 6

    Registered:
    Sep 29, 2005
    IC: Dunkeel
    Hillside, Nouane - ~ - World Between Worlds

    The first of the lesson had been simple. The explanation had resulted in a holocron lesson. This in turn had seemed to highlight some dark eventuality. Some foretold portend that also highlighted them as the protectors of the future, but in this told that what was just stated as forbidden was not. In small quantities. Stifling the urge to growl at the frustration of this meandering lesson.

    The Master had more to say, “The World Between Worlds - the Light - is the hedge against chaos. It is not our place to use it wantonly, but what would happen if the Celestials themselves fell? Who would have the knowledge, or indeed the right, to fix what had occurred? To undo the End of Time?”

    The Master's hands broadened to encompass the four of them. “You.”

    Dunkeel straightened at this. It was that he had felt convicted. . .and also totally different. Little did he know how different as finally the Leader amongst them was pointed out. He bowed his head, muttering the simple fact. "The One."

    What followed was when The Master gestured anew, upwards, and above them five double-pyramids appeared from the Gate, dropping down to their level slowly. They had a circle to the front of one face, which showed a cockpit. The overall shape was not too dissimilar to the Holocron design of Dunkeel. Staring he knew there was a significance to this. Not that he was sure what it was, but there was.

    “The Celestials made use of these ships during the War of the Temporal Planes. They are essentially meditation devices; you can control them with your thoughts,” The Master did something but Dunkeel was merely listening as his eyes were transfixed on what was ahead of him. “If you get confused, look up Sith Meditation Spheres in your spare time; they copy the principle, as you’ll see from your Holocrons.” The Master paused. “But I am sure you’ll work it out for yourself, perhaps you could test yourself to work it out without consulting a Holocron, eh?”

    Challenge accepted. He mentally thought.

    He absently continued on. “Larger versions of them exist, called Tho Yor. They are warship analogs, but they can also be used as prisons, you see, and indeed the largest of them held the realm of Mortis. The Kwoth used them when they swapped sides, and renamed themselves the Kwa.”

    Without further comment, The Master followed shortly by the others leapt into the now-open cockpit of their closest Tho Sphere. He peered down at them, huffing a bit more than one would have expected for such a minor exertion. "Kriff." Dunkeel softly muttered as he watched The Master and then the others rise out of sight one by one. He felt a sense of dread, a bad feeling.

    Dunkeel turned to his Tho Sphere, removing his holocron. Showing them one to the other with raised hand as his mind probed the vessel. Listening, preparing. Stepping forward he leapt inside. As the circle closed he so to closed his eyes and assumed a meditative position. "We shall be as one. Til' the Force is torn from my bones and beyond." breathing deep he opened his mind as far as it would go about him. With exhale he caressed with mind and body, the Tho Sphere, the Holocron, Fang, bringing each one to the other in the Force. Each one together. "If you have no name, I would call you Heart." In, out, in, out, in and out. Until he was satisfied. Until he felt at peace with the three and himself. The fourth he kept away, he kept silent. It was not for this.

    With minimal effort it began to ascend, the cockpit hissing as the last gaps sealed off.

    Then as but a moment, he was in with the rest as they came to settle. The World Beyond Worlds was none too similar to the twilight place that they had left; black starry backdrops with pathways of white... and, in the distance, portals of white.

    As he darted up in the comfort of his Tho Sphere, Heart, he saw or was shown much, he was not sure whether it was Heart or himself that saw it. The Master stepping out of his own craft as came in hot to land with the last of the others in time. Hearing or being told the words of The Master as he moved and stepped free.

    “The World Between Worlds. Whilst this place will reconfigure itself to match your impression of reality, this is its default setting, as decided by the Celestials so long ago.” The Master spoke and he found it curious. The Celestials saw this as the most simple, most easy way to view it. “Access to this place is the true Light that you protect. If the World Between Worlds is lost, or summoned by a Dark One, all of reality is in danger.”

    With a fluttering gesture, he drew four circles towards them, which rolled and rolled. They came close, and stopped, forming a surrounding wall of entrances. “These four are open. If matters went awry, someone would be able to access these key moments in history, and ensure that they pass as they should.”

    Three of them were visible to them, but the fourth was dimmed, for now.

    The Last Stand - Two battling, male and female.

    Knights of the Last Republic - Weird inversion separated the battling figures.

    138 ABY: Together; Alone - A field of Life and surely Death.

    He lazily noted to them with a hand. “Your Holocron’s would tell you otherwise, after all.”

    An quirk of an eyebrow, felt in the Force, but not seen, filled them with his unbridled curiosity. “No?”

    At this Dunkeel shrugged. Looking down at what floated in his hand before tucking it away. Perhaps. Yes. No. Time would likely tell. He was also sure the others, especially the librarian had his own theories.

    TAG: @QueenSabe7, @Jerjerrod-Lennox, @Sinrebirth , @HanSolo29
     
  3. Jerjerrod-Lennox

    Jerjerrod-Lennox Jedi Grand Master star 7

    Registered:
    Mar 9, 2005
    IC: Vydra Delomeux
    Location:The World Between Worlds


    Vydra was pleased that at least he had not made a prat of himself and that his ship had followed his orders and followed the Master.

    But it seemed they were going into the white hole, the hole that the Master himself said they were forbidden to enter unless absolutely necessary.

    What is he doing? Vydra wondered. What was he about to show them?

    It must have been important in order for the Master to bring them into the portal.

    Vale’s response to Joren was a little concerning though. Was there something she knew? Something she had been told not to share with the others but felt that she had to make her feelings known? This was troubling.

    And where the hell was the shadow? He still hasn't turned up and Vydra was beginning to wonder if there was a purpose behind his disappearance. Something the Master was hiding. He knew everyone had their secrets, including he, but this was one piece of the puzzle was worried about as well as everything else.

    The Master had come to a stop in front of the portals of white, Vydra simply focused on the Master again too a few deep breaths again and simply commanded land.

    The ship thankfully obeyed him again and settled down inside the darkness. The cockpit opened and Vydra once again tentatively used the Force to bring him down to the Masters level. Vydra was growing more confident in his abilities as time wore on but he was still like he was when he first joined the Protectors. Tentative and reticent to use his powers as if they would burn him at one point.

    Vydra turned to see if the others were coming, he noticed though that Dunkeel hadn't joined them yet. Either he was having problems or something had caught his attention. Vydra smiled, at least he hadn't tried to pounce on the thing.

    “The World Between Worlds. Whilst this place will reconfigure itself to match your impression of reality, this is its default setting, as decided by the Celestials so long ago.”

    “Access to this place is the true Light that you protect. If the World Between Worlds is lost, or summoned by a Dark One, all of reality is in danger.”


    So the crux of the matter was this. If a darksider wanted to access these portals it was up to the Protectors to stop them. Well if they could stop them that is. The notion of a darksider literally jumping in between worlds was a scary thought. They could literally eat up or destroy whole futures. Alternate times if there such a thing.

    Vydra knew what he had to do thanks to what he knew. But the others didn't. And they would have no idea either. But they too had secrets of their own, Vydra suspected this as Joren was announced as leader and his suspicions had come true. He had also had an inkling with his duel with Dunkeel when he had said that Vydra was not the one.

    These suspicions were linking in with Vydra knew. And they all had no idea what was to come…

    Well the Twilight Wars were coming, but they had no clue whatsoever about what could happen.

    Four white portals were summoned by the Master “These four are open. If matters went awry, someone would be able to access these key moments in history, and ensure that they pass as they should.”

    So these moments were ordained to pass, well that was Vydra’s opinion. But these were only ordained to pass if everything went to hell. One however was dimmed for now which was both confusing and as yet concerning. Perhaps Vydra thought, this was…

    No, he couldn't think about that right now. Perhaps this moment was ordained to pass, maybe not. But if it was dimmed, it meant that it was hidden for a reason. Perhaps all would be revealed if someone accessed this if the time came. Perhaps it would never be accessed at all. Once again more questions than answers.

    One portal showed a male and female fighting, red blade against purple. It looked like the female was about to strike a brutal blow.

    One portal showed a woman in casual clothes battling a man in black. Red cross type blade against blue. Dark against light Vydra sensed, just like the other portal. Also inverted.

    The third was a little more confusing. It looked like a gathering of sorts. Ships in the air. A massacre about to happen?. Or perhaps even resistance against something. Vydra couldn't tell with this one.

    He lazily noted to them with a hand. “Your Holocron’s would tell you otherwise, after all.”

    A quirk of an eyebrow, felt in the Force, but not seen, filled them with his unbridled curiosity. “No?”


    I know what I have to do. Whether everything that I saw would happen or is going to happen is still up in the air. I have to focus, e mindful, listen to the Force. I cannot rely on it to tell me when the time comes, perhaps I will have to trust myself. I hope it does not happen for the sake of the others. But if it does...he cast his blue eyed gaze around.

    You have no idea what is coming….

    TAG: @Sinrebirth, @Mitth_Fisto , @HanSolo29 , @QueenSabe7
     
  4. QueenSabe7

    QueenSabe7 Chosen One star 6

    Registered:
    Mar 23, 2001
    IC: Vale Sera
    The World Between Worlds

    Without so much as a single jolt or a signal for arrival, Vale slid right out of her world and into the next.

    The World Between Worlds.

    Her personal Tho Sphere rose only a short time longer as she passed the ethereal threshold, seamlessly gliding to a halt at a supposed predetermined destination. The cockpit door slid open to release her, and after a moment’s pause, she climbed to her feet and walked freely out into this unknown realm.

    Vale’s first step was filled with apprehension, her eyes narrowing at the walkway before her, only distinguishable due to the curiously bright outlining in white on either side. Otherwise, she would’ve assumed she’d just fall into the starry void below. It was like being in space itself, though the Force - and the fact she could breathe unaided - was vastly different here. Lifting her chin and looking ahead, above, to either side – all around were webbings of these pathways, extending in all manners of directions, some culminating in circular end-points.

    Doors? Well, gates, she gathered would be the more appropriate term, if that was indeed what they were. There were so many…

    Bringing her other leg out to join the first, she curled her arms over her chest as if she were cold. The temperature was quite pleasant, in fact, but the sensation she got in this World cooled her blood. She felt so small, everything around her went beyond their own galaxy, the very universe even.

    Lost in awe of the scope of it all, she found the Master close by, most of the others having already been waiting. Another one of his exaggerated gestures that she had grown fond of and he called a quartet of those illuminated circles she had noted towards them. The closer they became, even in movement, Vale could make out the intricate markings that were all along their edge. If it was an alien language, it was foreign to her and if any of it held significant meaning, it was unknown to her.

    Steadily Vale turned in place, the four circles have taken position evenly apart, marking four points around the small group. Still images materialized within their limits, the last remaining dark and unchanged. Her initial guess had been correct, these were entry points to other places, and times. The gateways to history and perhaps, the future as well. It made her head spin, and the sudden onslaught of dizziness had nothing to do with turning on the spot as she was.

    Vale began to linger at each one now, detailing these specific moments in time they were being shown -

    A woman, ferociously attacking another, forcesabers prepared to clash. It was not lost on her that the blade the female wielded was the exact hue of her own.

    Next was another pair of beings, blades actually meeting. One blue, one red. The way they were presented – again, the female being shown atop her opponent, dominating, and the bottom figure using a blade of crimson – was a curious pattern. However, here the face of the woman was the opposite of the first. Calm, gentle even.

    Then the third gate appeared to hold a scene of preparation, perhaps for battle the likes of which would be great, and nothing like the intimate nature of the fights within the previous two. Beings of so many species she couldn’t even count, ships she had never seen, and a planet that was new to her. It almost looked to be a painting, a refined art not many cared to learn in present times.

    And finally, the fourth gate. Still blank, still hiding whatever secret was behind the veil.

    “Your Holocron’s would tell you otherwise, after all. No?”

    Vale tore her eyes and mind away from the emptiness of that last circle to peer at the Master, sensing him relay rampant emotions in her direction. Assuming he was doing the same to the others, as well. She was interested enough, even without his energetic encouragement but a shadow of a frown creased her features. If he was trying to get them, her, to forget what he insinuated before they had come here – that he would be leaving – he would soon realize that would be a fool’s errand.

    She would never forget.

    Pivoting, she looked back at the first gate and to the woman with the violet blade. Her obvious rage was intriguing, to be controlled by such a wild and dangerous emotion. She wondered what happened to her, who she was…

    TAGS: @Sinrebirth @Mitth_Fisto @HanSolo29 @Jerjerrod-Lennox
     
  5. HanSolo29

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

    Registered:
    Apr 13, 2001
    IC: Dr. Joren Graal
    The World Between Worlds

    The Tho Sphere ascended on its short journey, and they were soon passing through the void...into the World Between Worlds. Once they arrived, Joren stepped down onto the consecrated ground and lifted his chin to observe their new surroundings. Surprisingly, for a place reputed to bring imminent disaster to the known universe, it did not seem all that remarkable.

    It had the same minimalist framework and bleak landscape, deprived of all detail, as the hillside before it. In fact, if he had not been told directly by the Master that they had entered the gateway, Joren would not have suspected a thing. It was so unassuming to the naked eye that it bordered on the mundane. But perhaps that is what made it so dangerous; it was a hidden menace skirting beneath the surface – or above, in this case – of the material world, simply waiting for someone to stumble along and indulge in its many secrets.

    So many secrets, it seemed.

    As if on cue, the Master conjured four additional circles within this primal space and recalled them to their position. They rolled and wavered, as if on currents of electricity, before expanding outward to form a wall of entryways. According to the old man, each one led into the forbidden frontier they called the future; four key moments in time that they could access to ensure that things did not deviate from their predetermined path – a ‘reset button’ of sorts. By their very nature, it did not seem possible for them to exist, and yet here they were...standing on the threshold.

    Joren noted that the fourth corridor remained conspicuously dimmed. It was an odd display for this particular lesson, and he found his blue eyes narrowing to study it curiously. What made this one stand apart from the others? He saw conflict, war, and strife in the other three, but this one…

    Stepping closer to the source of his intrigue, the Doctor frowned, suddenly feeling the urge to reach out and examine it more closely for clues, but the words of the Master stopped him from acting on his foolish impulses:

    “Your Holocron’s would tell you otherwise, after all,” he noted in reference to their ability to go back and set things right in the case of an emergency, “...no?”

    Yes, of course the Holocrons had revealed a less than ideal future, one that the Master had stressed could not be changed. Preordained was the word he had chosen. But regardless of this ‘truth’, he had encouraged Joren to try anyway. It was that single hope that continued to nag at the back of his mind, that same paradoxical concept all over again.

    And in the midst of these anxious thoughts, he recalled another of the Master’s revelations: “Access to this place is the true Light that you protect. If the World Between Worlds is lost, or summoned by a Dark One, all of reality is in danger.”

    Light versus Dark.

    A flip of a coin.

    Again, he wondered about the Dark Ones. Joren had raised the question earlier about the possibility of ‘Dark Protectors’ whose sole purpose was to sow chaos and destruction, but the Master had conveniently remained silent on the matter. Now here was yet another reference to these ominous beings.

    Could they summon the World Between Worlds much like themselves? Through the use of Forcesabers? If so, would he and his peers have a warning system in place that would alert them to a breach in the gateway?

    Or was he simply being paranoid?

    Joren inwardly shuddered and shielded himself from these possibilities, finally turning back to the Master with weary eyes. His expression hardened under his hooded gaze, now intent on seeking answers.

    TAG: @Sinrebirth; @Jerjerrod-Lennox; @QueenSabe7; @Mitth_Fisto
     
  6. Sinrebirth

    Sinrebirth Immortal Mod-King of the EUC, Lit, RPF and SWC star 8 Staff Member Manager

    Registered:
    Nov 15, 2004
    Lesson Three

    IC: The Master

    World Between Worlds

    There were no overt questions.

    Or, rather, there were no questions being made aloud... Vale was quietly focused; she was not being distracted from whatever topic she had settled on pursuing; Vydra was leaking worry, but that was no surprise; Joren was always thinking, thinking, thinking; Dunkeel, as ever, was passive, allowing the others to speak for him.

    The Master eyed Vale; focusing upon Jaina Solo, in battle with Jacen Solo, then fully Darth Caedus, having taken the title of Dark Man from Darth Krayt... for a time, anyway. He’d tell Vale where to look in the Holocron’s later, perhaps.

    But his overall sense of them all was a determination to face the future. Good. They’d need that grit. Soft as Dunkeel’s was. As dread-driven as Vydra’s was.

    Into the silence his hand raised, finger up. “I’ll let you look into this in due course.”

    “Later. I do not want to access these realms now - you and I need to practice accessing the World Between Worlds as necessary. But anything beyond these key points, you must not access. It is entirely forbidden - it would be impossible to calculate the harm of opening a new portal.”

    He thundered, the Force buffeting them with his will, and even the portals teetered. “Do you understand?”

    They could not be silent for this bit.

    He jabbed a finger at Joren. “If you intend to access the Light, you must tell Joren. As an absolute. If you are discovered doing so without his consent, then you will be going against all of my teachings.”

    TAG: @Mitth_Fisto, @Jerjerrod-Lennox, @HanSolo29, @QueenSabe7
    —-
    IC: The Master

    Hours later, hilltop

    All of a sudden, the Force told Zas’tel that the Master stood behind him, looming. He was almost leering, hands tucked behind his back but squeezed into fists.

    But the darker currents of the Force, those the cloak of the Master allowed him to access more naturally, told him again that it was all a facade.

    “What did you do?”

    His voice was sharp.

    “Or rather, what did you also not do?” The Masters voice jabbed at the Defel emotionally, antagonising the natural ‘fight-or-flight’ instincts that were hardwired into Zas’tel’s brain.

    TAG: @Kev-Mas_Colcha (Combo, not a secret one)


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
     
  7. Sinrebirth

    Sinrebirth Immortal Mod-King of the EUC, Lit, RPF and SWC star 8 Staff Member Manager

    Registered:
    Nov 15, 2004
    IC: The Master
    World Between Worlds

    Silence replied to him again, and the Master wilted a little. He was exhausted. Mentally drained by having to manage all of these discordant pieces of a puzzle of his own creation. A truism emerged; the faster you pushed something, the faster it moved. Eventually something was going to give. With a nod, he drew himself up and projected a grin into the Force.

    "This lesson is done," his head canted slightly, and he sighed somewhat. "Our last lesson will be at the same time as before, a week from now." He turned back to his Tho Yor and prepared himself to go. "Well done, all of you. You have all made me proud."

    Something akin to fear curdled within the Master, but he stamped it down, mastering himself. He was trusting the five of them. The Master could only adjust so much.In a few weeks time everything would begin, and other forces would begin to shape what was to come. Uncertainties would become realities, and certainties would meet them. With any game plan, a strategy collapses the moment it is enacted - it had to be versatile, and adapt.

    But the Master would not be here to ensure that happened. It was why he had to emphasise that their truths were so important to be adhered to; they were expressions of what the Master had found within them - of what they had revealed by opening themselves to their Forcesabers.

    Blue; white; purple; green.

    Duty; balance; conflict; service.

    The duty of a person who practised what they preached.

    The balance of a person who took on board all the saw and provided calm to the tide.

    The conflict of a person who stood on the frontline, before the people they had sworn to defend.

    The service of someone who support everyone, and by that, the little person as much as the grand.

    That of course did not account for black; the Master's colour.

    They did not know what colour Zas'tel would have created, for he had inherited the Master's blade - thus the Master needing to use another's to open the Light.

    But even what their blade colours told the Master was not all they could be. That uncertainty in four of the blades gnawed at the Master. It gnawed at his soul. He would not be here to correct the course of matters.

    Something had already been tweaked by Zas'tel. He would have to speak to him about it.

    And soon.

    Whilst none of his fear leaked into the Force, or his body language, his seriousness did. It stood out, and the Master would be unable to do anything about that.

    TAG: @HanSolo29, @Jerjerrod-Lennox, @Mitth_Fisto, @QueenSabe7, @Kev-Mas_Colcha (combo awaited)
     
  8. Jerjerrod-Lennox

    Jerjerrod-Lennox Jedi Grand Master star 7

    Registered:
    Mar 9, 2005
    IC: Vydra Delomeux
    Location:The World Between Worlds


    Nobody spoke which spoke volumes. Everybody seemed like that were thinking internally. Joren did not speak up which was unusual for him but perhaps he was seeking answers within his mind.

    Vydra could sense Vale’s concentration more than the others. Perhaps there was something there that had caught her gaze. Perhaps this was all linked to her exclamation against Joren that there was something possibly that she either knew or sensed about Joren that she didn't want him to be the leader.

    But the Master had spoken and Joren was the leader. And they would have to live with the decision even if they didn't like it. Vydra couldn't think of anyone else to become the leader apart from him, Vydra was nowhere near ready to become a leader himself. Not yet anyway.

    Although if everything that came to pass did….

    He would have to possibly ask the Master if it could be stopped.

    The Master continued “I’ll let you look into this in due course.”

    “Later. I do not want to access these realms now - you and I need to practice accessing the World Between Worlds as necessary. But anything beyond these key points, you must not access. It is entirely forbidden - it would be impossible to calculate the harm of opening a new portal.”


    He thundered, the Force buffeting them with his will, and even the portals teetered. “Do you understand?”

    He felt that.

    It felt like the Master was basically threatening them, well to Vydra it felt like it. Basically if you were to open a new portal, prepare for the consequences and the wrath of the Master himself. Vydra wouldn't dare do such a thing, but that fourth portal still intrigued him. What was hidden there that the Master did not want them to see?. Would it reveal itself to all or one of them?. Perhaps the question would be answered at the right time, probably if it all went to hell.

    With the power of the Master’s will Vydra felt dizzy as if he was about to fall over thanks to the power of the thought. He managed to try and steady himself and look like a fool by falling over. The sheer force of it left a lasting impression on Vydra something that could develop into a rather nasty headache.

    “Yes Master” was all he could say his voice sounding normal even though thanks to that rather forceful thought pushing in his voice would have sounded rather shaken. He had managed to get himself back in gear as it were by taking a few deep breaths.

    The Master pointed at Joren “If you intend to access the Light, you must tell Joren. As an absolute. If you are discovered doing so without his consent, then you will be going against all of my teachings.”

    Vydra frowned at this. He had no issue with Joren being the leader but from what he had learned regarding his Truth here would be the problem. If everything had happened came to pass, would there be time to ask? Would Joren even let him access the Light if he needed to? To stop the death and destruction?. Perhaps the Master would hopefully tell him more, but he could not rely on it. Perhaps he had been told all he needed to know.

    Perhaps a friendship could be shattered forever. He hoped not.

    The Master was silent for a bit probably letting them all digest what he had said. It was all coming to a crescendo and it seemed the Master knew it. Their Truths were told unless there was more to say. Now it would be time to see if they stuck together. Or fell as one.

    "This lesson is done," his head canted slightly, and he sighed somewhat. "Our last lesson will be at the same time as before, a week from now." He turned back to his Tho Yor and prepared himself to go. "Well done, all of you. You have all made me proud."

    It was good to know that he had made him proud and it showed that he had come a long way from the flamboyant flirty librarian to becoming a Protector, what he had always wanted to be. His blade was green, a symbol to defend, a symbol of peace, a symbol that knowledge was to be defended not hoarded.

    That the Protectors were here and that the Light would be protected, perhaps whatever it cost.

    The shadow was still not here which was really concerning now. What was he doing?. Did he have a secret mission unknown to them all? Or had he left on some dark purpose. Hopefully when they got back from the World Between Worlds the shadow would be waiting. And Vydra would be watching.

    As he made his way back to his Tho Sphere and tentatively lifted himself in again he wondered whether it could all be stopped. Whether it would all turn out good in the end. Vydra doubted it but perhaps he could ask the Master in a private moment.

    Time to head back to the real world and find out…..

    TAG: @Sinrebirth , @HanSolo29 , @QueenSabe7 , @Mitth_Fisto
     
  9. Mitth_Fisto

    Mitth_Fisto Force Ghost star 6

    Registered:
    Sep 29, 2005
    IC: Dunkeel
    World Between Worlds

    Into the silence The Master hand raised, finger up. “I’ll let you look into this in due course.”

    “Later. I do not want to access these realms now - you and I need to practice accessing the World Between Worlds as necessary. But anything beyond these key points, you must not access. It is entirely forbidden - it would be impossible to calculate the harm of opening a new portal.”

    That was interesting. Forming these portals, or at least their methods of doing so would be bad, very bad. Perhaps those that first accessed it and first made this view of reality could so more simply and with less harm, whatever that meant. Perhaps there was a way to observe and learn that? Although to what end?

    The Master thundered, the Force buffeting them with his will, and even the portals teetered. “Do you understand?”

    It was shocking and cut off his own thoughts as he nodded with a soft growl, "YES!" He roared back. Teeth flashing at the harsh challenge before he stood once more calm and listening even as the others answered.

    The Master jabbed a finger at Joren. “If you intend to access the Light, you must tell Joren. As an absolute. If you are discovered doing so without his consent, then you will be going against all of my teachings.”

    A curt nod, a flexing of his hands as he eyed his fellow students at this challenge, this charge. He did not trust the librarian to heed it, ones of dust oft thought they knew enough. When they were on their own he wondered if that would be a point of hardship between them.

    The Master sent a grin into the Force. A sharp contrast to all that had come before.

    "This lesson is done," his head canted slightly, and he sighed somewhat. "Our last lesson will be at the same time as before, a week from now." He turned back to his Tho Yor and prepared himself to go. "Well done, all of you. You have all made me proud." The Master's seriousness did bleed out to the Force, a contrast to all that was spoken. A silent dichotomy that seemed to make and give far greater weight to all of this than any threats or shows of Force could to Dunkeel. Hands raised he clutched at his breast and a trilling call not unlike a small bird left his mouth. For there was blood in the air, the passing of possibly only a torch or much much more was marked in days now. With that heavy sad joy he turned and leapt into his own Tho Sphere, the ship seemed to respond with a spin and cantering about The Master's own. A dancing show of care, of waiting, of respect.

    Of Love.


    TAG: @HanSolo29, @Jerjerrod-Lennox, @Sinrebirth , @QueenSabe7,
     
  10. QueenSabe7

    QueenSabe7 Chosen One star 6

    Registered:
    Mar 23, 2001
    IC: Vale Sera
    The World Between Worlds

    Vale bit back harsher words and instead looked upon her Master with poorly concealed annoyance.

    “I understand the first. The second, no.” Vale managed to keep the displeasure out of her voice at least, managing a more assertive tone than anything overtly negative. “It should not be the responsibility of one. Leader or not, we will fall apart if we are all not open and honest with each other. We should consent together. It should be all of us.”

    Folding her arms and looking around at her fellow Protectors, she nodded, thinking aloud. “All of us, or none of us.”

    The amount of danger that was linked to the World Between Worlds had been emphasized repeatedly by the Master, and yet he thought to give one of them the sole power to allow access? It made absolutely no sense to her. Not one bit. And she wanted to express that confusion even further, but restrained herself. Her reactions today were all over the board, and she needed to leave most of what had gone unsaid for a much more private forum. Unless he chose to answer her here and now…

    Which he did not, that would have made it too easy.

    "This lesson is done - Our last lesson will be at the same time as before, a week from now."

    Another dismissal, but he knew her well. He had to know she would still be after him for explanations, and answers. And thinking of all she had running through her mind in addition, bone-weary exhaustion returned to weigh down upon her. She deflated some.

    "Well done, all of you. You have all made me proud."

    She smiled, genuine and warm. Missteps aside, his praise was always welcome and often needed as a reminder that where she was, was exactly where she was supposed to be.

    Taking one last look at the gate with the woman wielding the violet-blade, she followed him, Vydra and Dunkeel as they turned back to their respective Tho Spheres. Vale’s gaze swept over Joren passively before she stepped inside her own, and something within her spiked discordantly. All of us, or none of us, she had said. Whatever reservations she had regarding the doctor needed to be dealt with, and soon. The longer she let these feelings fester, the longer it would take for the group to handle thier responsibilities. And time was not on their side, it seemed.

    "We should talk,"
    she called to him, pushing the words from her mouth with effort. "And soon."

    She didn't allow him time to answer, not wanting to leave the door open for this conversation today. Entering the vessel as soon as she had stopped speaking, she settled back into the seat and issued a silent command to ‘return home’, to which the sphere dutifully obeyed. To make her transition complete, she still needed to gather all of her belongings at her prior lodging to be brought back to the Clock Temple, making it her true home. Her only home.

    It could be delayed no longer.

    TAGS: @Sinrebirth @HanSolo29 @Mitth_Fisto @Jerjerrod-Lennox
     
  11. HanSolo29

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

    Registered:
    Apr 13, 2001
    IC: Dr. Joren Graal
    The World Between Worlds

    Once again, the Master’s words failed to provide an adequate explanation for the answers he was seeking. If anything, he met Joren’s silent inquiry with provocation, specifically in the way he called him out in front of his fellow Protectors. While the doctor understood the need to emphasize the dangers of accessing the world gates, this method seemed in poor taste. Surely, the old man had sensed the tension that had rippled through the group when he had named him the first time – when he had proclaimed him the leader? Why would he deliberately incite cynicism and strife for a second time?

    Was there a purpose to this? Another test perhaps? Joren wanted to believe there was a reason that would benefit them on their journey, otherwise it would suggest something about the Master that he wasn’t quite ready to explore at this point.

    Clenching his jaw, Joren abruptly brushed that thought aside and focused on the old man’s unanswered question – did they understand the importance of not disturbing the other entry points? That they were forbidden...unless Joren gave his authorization?

    The others were already weighing in on this grave truth, most of them giving their consent. For his part, Joren simply observed the proceedings before inclining his chin to offer a slow nod, the only outward sign of his own admission. Despite his reservations, he was aware of his responsibilities and acknowledged his role, however reluctantly.

    But of course, as the doctor suspected, everyone did not approve of the Master’s orders. Once more, it was Vale who stepped forward to express her concerns, “I understand the first. The second, no,” she said with annoyance seeping into her tone. “It should not be the responsibility of one. Leader or not, we will fall apart if we are all not open and honest with each other. We should consent together. It should be all of us – all of us, or none of us.”

    Joren narrowed his eyes and studied her intently. It wasn’t that he disagreed with her sentiments, not exactly. He was actually more perturbed by her bold attitude and the resentment it would likely stir among their ranks. Again, perhaps it was no fault of her own, particularly after the anguish of her breakup, but it still did not excuse her from airing her dissenting thoughts in this manner.

    This is what he had feared when the old man had initially singled him out and revealed his Truth. He had not asked for this burden; the Master had chosen him. What else was he supposed to do? He wasn’t even sure if he was angry at Vale herself – it was the immense scope of the situation itself.

    Fortunately, the Master granted them a reprieve by ending the lesson and dismissing them for another brief hiatus. Joren could certainly use it; he was far too distracted and agitated to focus on anything else at the moment. He needed time alone to think and to truly ponder the meaning of everything the Master had presented to him today. Would that mean he would find the answers he so desperately craved? Probably not, but at least it would grant him some time away from the Temple to mentally recoup and realign some of his priorities. Perhaps he could even find the time to speak privately with some of the others to sort out this mess – Vale, especially.

    As if on cue, the doctor caught sight of her lithe form as she moved with grace back up toward her Tho Sphere. Their eyes met, even across the distance that separated them, and she began to speak. “We should talk,” she stated flatly, her voice somewhat strained with the effort. “And soon.”

    Joren pursed his lips together firmly and afforded her a curt nod, though she likely didn’t see it. She had already turned her back and was ascending with her Sphere into the bleary twilight above.

    And that was just as well. It was fairly obvious from his vantage point that she could also use some time alone to recompose herself. They could always reconvene later, when they were both in a better state of mind. It was for the best.

    With a sigh, Joren pinched the bridge of his nose and proceeded to his own Sphere. It departed a short time later, carrying him back through the gateway to return to the natural world they so recently left behind.

    TAG: @Sinrebirth; @QueenSabe7; @Mitth_Fisto; @Jerjerrod-Lennox
     
    Last edited: Jul 31, 2019
  12. Sinrebirth

    Sinrebirth Immortal Mod-King of the EUC, Lit, RPF and SWC star 8 Staff Member Manager

    Registered:
    Nov 15, 2004
    IC: The Master
    Departing the World Between Worlds

    His sight occupied by what was occurring as a result of Zas’tel, the Master was jolted from his reverie by the dancing of Dunkeel’s ThoSphere.

    The Master smiled, his hand touched to his heart. After all, it was at least part of Dunkeel’s truth to support their leader; to be the rock that they could rely upon. The Master had not expected to need that unconditional loyalty - no, love. The Force was with Dunkeel, that it was.

    Vale and Joren however, were a jangle of emotions and concerns, and the Master wondered for the hundred thousandth time if he’d misjudged their roles. No. Purple and blue. They were entwined, as much as they likely, at this point, resented that. It had not been serendipity that the two of them had crossed paths outside of the class and it had been the catalyst for... well, whatever had occurred between the four of them.

    Vydra was deeply watching, but he understood what was at stake. Better than the others, perhaps. Whilst the board mind rotate around Vale and Joren, it would also around Dunkeel and Vydra. There was balance in four, and he had needed to only present the Forcesabers to the students to choose.

    Reassurance that what he was doing was right was in short supply, so the Master thanked Dunkeel, filling the Force with his reciprocal love and affection. He leapt from his Sphere, again heavily, grunting slightly.

    Once they had disembarked, the Master fluttered his fingers and the Spheres levitated up to the sky. He gestured and a Forcesaber plopped into his hand - Dunkeel’s, this time, lovingly eased from the Chistori’s possession to the Master’s, and the rhythmic resonance of someone else’s Forcesaber in his hand echoed again in his palm. It was somewhat more keenly vibrating, because after all, Dunkeel’s blade was a white and brilliant blade and at the end of the day the Master’s was black as night itself - a slightly jarring moment that Dunkeel would detect.

    But the blade ignited and the Light - the World Between Worlds - was sealed. Colour returned to Nouane, and with it, what had been missing; the chirps of birds and the whisper of the breeze and the warmth of the sun, beating down upon them. The Master released an inward sigh; there had been no accidental fall into one of the four Portals, and all was well with the future.

    Good, good.

    But the Master’s task was not yet done. He levitated the hilt back to Dunkeel as he spoke. “Alrighty. The third lesson is done, and dusted. You all did excellently, and I appreciate that it’s been yet another content driven affair.” He clapped them, once. “I’m proud of you each. You’ve come leaps and bounds in the last month, walking into an immense world. I am grateful that you are sharing this world with me, even if only for a time. The first few years of this were a bit mad, working it out on my own!” He chuckled self-depreciatingly; a lame joke.

    “So, to say thank you, I’ve no homework for you. We’ll reconvene in one week, and in that week all I expect is for you two to have that chat,” he gestured to Vale and Joren, allowing a grin to flow into the Force, before he turned a hand to Vydra and Dunkeel, “And for you two have discussed more about how a future Order will look.” Another smile into the Force. “Perhaps over a drink this time, not your drawn blades.”

    His finger was raised. “But not here, and not now. Vale; please move yourself fully into the clock-temple first. Dunkeel, I need you to tweak the clock. I swear it’s ‘tock’ is too slow. Honestly,” he placed his hands on his chest. “I’m not mad! Old Crepusculum needs some love.”

    He paused. “Oh yeah, I forgot to tell you the name of the bell, didn’t I? Old Crepusculum. It means ‘Old Twilight’. After all, a clock is always both Dawn and Dusk; it’s a twelve numbered clock that covers twenty four hours. Fun thought, no?”

    That was a massive aside. What he chose to names things for dramatic emphasis was more a discussion about his psychological well being than anything else. And he was monologuing again. Cringing, he shrugged. “Last time I’ll ever monologue, okay?”

    They might laugh, they might not.

    Drawing up tall, the Master placed his right hand on his chest and gestured outward to them; from his heart to them. “May the Force be with you.”

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

    OOC: You may assume that your second secret combos, as completed, take place here. (Apart from yours, Kev, which led on from exactly after your first).

    Vale and Joren, please combo a response a day or two after this point.

    Dunkeel and Vydra, please also combo a response a day or two after this point.

    Thank you!!!


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
     
  13. Sinrebirth

    Sinrebirth Immortal Mod-King of the EUC, Lit, RPF and SWC star 8 Staff Member Manager

    Registered:
    Nov 15, 2004
    The Birth of the Republic

    An entry from the Holocron of Prophecy

    Eventually, very eventually, the last remnant of Celestial cooperation - the Je’daii Order propped up with both Gree and Kwa mysteries - encountered the Rakatan Infinite Empire, and the Force Wars began. Both the Order and the Rakata were changed by that day - the Order, previously a creation of balance, discovered an overwhelming darkness that polarised them forever towards the light side of the Force - as the Jedi Order. The Infinite Empire was decapitated and fell into civil war, much as the more balanced aspects of the Jedi fought to prevent the Order turning fully to the light. The Force Wars saw the end of the Rakata, who were suddenly destroyed by the genetic loss of the Force, and a massive slave revolt.

    [​IMG]

    Woot.

    Only took five millennia and countless individuals suffering. The surviving slave species fell into two broad groups. Those in the Core which would found the Republic with the Jedi as their protectors, and those in the Rim unified by Daritha Xim, the Despot (later Darth, incidentally). His rule was undone by the Hutts, and the Tion Cluster that survived as Xim’s successors fell into disunity, watched over by the Jedi on Ossus.

    Of course the Republic and Jedi were paving over the ancient past, a past which the Celestials had abandoned and the successors of the Old Ones had dominated. The Republic absorbed Sith cults and secret Old One worshippers at Alaskan and in the form of the Vianists, but those groups would take millennia to acquire sufficient control to make a move against the greater galaxy. However, the Sith in the then-Unknown Regions had an early try, infiltrating Xendor into the Jedi Order.

    [​IMG]

    The Celestials briefly investigated the castaway but their family dynamic of squabbling prevented them from concluding much. The Son convinced the Father to let Xendor be his, and the Daughter reached out to prepare the Jedi Council. The Great Schism followed, and the subsequent war saw Xendor, his lover Arden Lyn, and the Legions of Lettow as the first Order of darksiders to cause chaos. Nonetheless they were defeated entirely, with Xendor killed and Arden frozen by a Kashi Mer-Sith amulet for twenty five millennia.

    The first millennium of the Republic was rounded off when the Core borders reached the edge of the Tion and Daritha Xim’s successors - the kingdoms reunified to attack Coruscant, and take Alaskan, invigorating a nobility that was secretly Sith. The century long war ended when opportunistic Hutts struck the Tion, but Jedi intervention did not stop the Republic from sterilising Desevro, the Tionese capital, for their steadfast refusal to surrender.

    You can kinda see the dark side at work even in the ostensible good guys, can’t you? Makes you wonder. But yay! Republic wins; Jedi wins; the light wins, no?


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    Last edited: Aug 8, 2019
  14. Jerjerrod-Lennox

    Jerjerrod-Lennox Jedi Grand Master star 7

    Registered:
    Mar 9, 2005
    OOC: This is a combo brought to you by myself and @Mitth_Fisto , it was a pleasure :D

    IC: Dunkeel, Vydra Delomeux
    Location: Nouane City, Nouane

    Finding Vydra was as simple and searching out the strongest whiff of old parchment and dust and following it to its source. One could take a librarian out of a library, but you cannot take the books out of the man. Making a hacking noise, the closest to a cough he could muster he tried to get the man's attention. Not all reacted well to seeing a giant orange reptoid filling a passageway with only a vest on it's top half. There was a reason he wore practical slacks when working around town for most places, it hurt his business to scare the customers.

    "Would now be a good time for drinks?" he softly inquired. The syllable drawn long in the question and the rasp of his voice.

    Vydra was not surprised that Dunkeel had found him. He probably had that library smell about him thanks to his Forcesaber. Plus Dunkeel had that animal instinct, that nose for smelling people which were familiar to him or even sensing danger.

    Quite handy that.

    Compared to Dunkeel Vydra looked like he was sometimes overdressed. But he was clad in his usual white shirt, grey waistcoat, black trousers with a gold stripe down each leg and black boots.

    That last time they had met face to face it had been blades at dawn, and Vydra had had to defend for his life. Now he hoped it would be a bit more civilised, but he knew that this argument about what each wanted the future order to look like could still get heated.

    And with what he had learned from the Master regarding all that was about to happen he felt he needed a drink.

    "Now is certainly a good time for drinks," he said with a smile, "I'm sure you may have a good place in mind, somewhere we could have a good discussion"

    Dunkeel nodded, honestly he hadn't planned on a place. He wasn't sure whether it had been a euphemism or a literal statement. In his pants pocket instead of the holocron he had a small bottle of something, but with the way Vydra had said place he felt like he had to actually go somewhere.

    "The roof with drinks from the kitchen, or there is a nice hole in the wall tavern with privacy booths at the south side of the city center." opening his arms and splaying his hands wide to show he didn't really care where they had their drinks, and would be amenable to anything the other had to suggest as well. Although now that he thought of it that south of the market tavern had some decent drink and food menus.

    "Why not the roof" Vydra said keeping the smile on his face " One can always appreciate a good view, and some good drinks as well. A perfect place for a debate and to appreciate Nouane itself"

    He gestured for Dunkeel to lead the way, noticing that he had taken a bottle of something out of his pocket. Drink perhaps?. Perhaps Dunkeel only drank on the job or maybe only in private moments. Interesting….

    "So" Vydra began "in our last debate you mentioned I was not the one and you mentioned quite a lot about culling. With all that we have learned since then does your argument still stand?"

    Snorting as he started walking back to the now perfectly ticking clock tower roof. "You are still not the one. The Master pointed out the One to me yesterday. You are the one I am to help and temper, collaborators for life." he simply stated that and was happy to leave it at that.

    "As for culling. . .take this clock we shall soon be passing on our way to the roof. The gears keep perfect time, but over time they gather spurs, sharp spikes of metal at the corners that have to be removed. Otherwise over time the gears will slow and spurs will grow until they are merely thousands of tiny little things not opposing, but resisting the natural motions and progress. Resisting until the clock ceases to work altogether. If we do not file those away regularly we risk that state." He continued up the winding staircase until they would come to draw down ladder and hatch at the lower side of the clock where they could exit onto the roof.

    Vydra followed taking in Dunkeels words, so Dunkeel was to help him?. Good luck on tempering him though. But what was Dunkeel helping him with, did he know of Vydra's mission? Again more questions.

    As they walked past the clock, the centrepiece of the Temple, a sign that the Protectors were here protecting not just the galaxy but it seemed time itself.

    There was also the matter Vydra thought of whom he could confide in. But he didn't know whether anyone was ready yet, whether they would be aware of what was to come. And whether it would be too late.

    "I thank you for helping me, perhaps despite our differences we can collaborate. Perhaps we can face what is coming or if we cannot stop it then we can work to safeguard the future if the time arrives".

    He studied the Chistori " You continued thoughts about culling concern me though. If one day we ever did have apprentices you may teach them the same, for them to cull a comrade because they have a chance of falling. We have a mission to always protect the Light yes, but killing a comrade could lead us into dark places which are forbidden. Anger, fear, aggression."

    He shook his head "You are an attacker, I am a defender, two opposites of the spectrum. You would run headlong into a challenge possibly not thinking about the consequences. My way is probably not the best either to let them attack and possibly overwhelm my defences which you nearly did. Could we find a middle ground it is possible. But I prefer that we defend against the dark, we can still protect the Light and can still preserve knowledge and the future".

    Walking out onto the roof, he found a spot he had sat on before when fixing the roof, it was not as high as many of the skyscrapers that rose above them. Still, it was a spectacular view of the city, and behind to the hilly north was a nice view of the country and the fateful hill they had visited just the other day.

    Pulling his small bottle out of his pocket he sighed as he nodded. "We can find balance between us, I agree. Perhaps instead of my attack or your defense we can agree with the law? Consequences depending on actions from mild to severe, building with infractions?"

    Vydra could feel the busy city flow all around in the Force as he joined Dunkeel on the roof, the sense of life continuing on as normal, and in the Force it sang to Vydra. He settled down on the roof, instead of his meditative pose he sat with his legs straight out in front of him a more relaxed pose.

    “Since we are collaborators now I think it is best for all of us that we try to agree on something” a ghost of a smile touched his lips before Vydra turned serious “The law of course is very important, it will help shape the future of the Protectors whether it be us or any apprentices we do train. I don’t know if Vale and Joren or even the shadow will feel the same but perhaps we could convince them”

    He focused on the Chistori’s face to make sure his point got across “Mild of course perhaps you should receive some minor punishment, confined to quarters maybe, perhaps they may have to research something to right the wrongs they have done. For the severe we will have to be careful. Of course if they lean towards the dark I still think they should try to be saved, perhaps I am being soft, perhaps not, but we should only cull as a last resort. Expulsion from the Protectors is another idea. We may have to face them later on, of course but we should be clear. Anything that endangers the Light or the Protectors should be punished, anything that endangers the future or others should be punished. We should be mindful that people can be brought back from the dark, some obviously can not and we must be watchful at all times”

    Unscrewing the cap he poured a small sip into his open maw before passing the small bottle to Vydra. It was a thick fluid that rolled like gritty oil over his tongue as he savored the bite and sweet tastes that held notes of fat, a twinge of coppery blood notes, and malty flavors from the grains used in the drinks brewing. It was alcoholic, thus the bite, but the fire was tame, mild. He could drink the whole bottle and barely be buzzed.

    Granted it was no tea, but he was not about to cloud either of their judgments as they talked up here on the roof. Feeling and seeing the city and world about them. Feeling and knowing that, symbolically this was what they were to protect. "I think we have a good base to work off there. I fear though, if we ever teach our students to access the World Between Worlds and they fall and we do not stop them. We will be the creators of the very thing we are to protect against. We shall be the authors of the very doom we are here to prevent." Shifting he looked at the man beside him to see how he handled the drink. Perhaps they would have to recess to get proper tea for the librarian.

    "We are not Jedi, and we cannot afford that luxury I feel. At least I am afraid if we do, if not us then a few hundred years from now we will have failed through the softness that gathers with the ages. Our students students getting that second chance, that long leash, will be what cracks the universe apart."

    Vydra took the small bottle from Dunkeel and raised it in salute "Cheers" he said and took a small gulp. The taste was slightly gritty oil with a little bit of bite and sweetness. He did manage to cough a little as it burned his throat a little. He hadn't had alcohol in a long while, not since his more youthful days. And his father had always spoken to him rather candidly about his Vydra's night's out drinking and partying.

    He was a lot different now.

    "You make a very good point, especially about the World Between Worlds. If a darksider with intimate knowledge of the Protectors and the dark side accessed this whole galaxies and timelines could come to ruin. And whatever we saw will not come to pass. All it would be would be destruction and chaos. But perhaps we can create a new future, something that we can create if we are unable to stop our doom."

    With what Vydra knew now a brighter future was all he could think about. It saved him from thinking about anything else.

    "Softness can be a weakness perhaps, but if we are too hard on them for even a mild infringement then it can lead to resentment and that way may lead to the dark. Severe infringements must lead to significant punishment, to say that you cannot do what you like, lead yourself astray and not suffer the consequences" he looked out over the city again "But if they do see the error of their ways, do they not deserve a second chance?"

    Hissing softly at the others discomfort Dunkeel resisted the urge to slap the dusty fellow on the back. Vydra was alright, and they actually seemed to be making more headway to talk this out then they had with lightsabers drawn.

    "Perhaps. Yet we would have to know they had reformed, know the heart of the man was true. It would be fine line of discovery before execution, but I suppose if it happens and is known then it happens." Shrugging he laid back on the roof and look up at the sky. Breathing in the air, the scents of his home.

    "You make me curious with your words of new future. This likely is to all happen long after we are dead." he simply said. "After all the holocrons and the World Between Worlds show things tens of thousands of years ahead."

    "I think we would have to trust ourselves and the Force on that" Vydra said regarding the point on if someone could be given a second chance. He watched Dunkeel lay on his back, visibly relaxed. Vydra was warming to Dunkeel, he seemed pleasant enough, and if they were to collaborate together it was good that they at least make some progress together.

    However the animosity that Vale was showing Joren was concerning him still. His friend could handle it though, Vydra was sure of it.

    And it was getting really tough to keep everything he knew was going to happen under wraps. It could lead to everything being broken. But he had made his choice and he would have to live with the consequences.

    "Perhaps the future is already set, perhaps what is shown in the Holocrons is destined to happen, only the Master knows such things possibly. After all he must have looked in the Holocrons themselves in order to see the future and to give us our Truths."

    Vydra shrugged "He did say that we were only to access what we saw if things were so dire that we had to. But it is intriguing the fourth window was dimmed, perhaps it pertains to a future that could happen, one that we may shape"

    Closing his eyes for a moment he went back and replayed those windows in his mind's eye. Battles, tipping points, death, war. Highlights of points where those things turned on a pins head to keep the galaxy moving forward to it's proper point. A proper eventuality. Darkness.

    A soft hiss escaped his toothy lips as they parted as though to speak, closed, then parted again. "Perhaps that is our future. A point that we must survive and create. Even seeing it might mean that we would change it, react differently when the time came, perhaps if we misunderstand what it is we are seeing. All is moot on that point. Either we are free to create our future, or we are the protectors of all futures. Where is the dilemma? Still we are slowly settling on a chosen method to create whether preordained or self inspired the Protectors anew in our blended images. We who are not leaders are crafting that future now. Here of all places?" Dunkeel stated with a wave at the roof, the sky, and the city beyond.

    Vydra nodded "Very true, I suppose we are. The Master obviously had a reason for choosing us two to debate the future of our Order. Perhaps we are planning for a time when Joren could not lead any more for any reason"

    Vydra again could not reveal what he knew, he knew himself that he was not leadership material but it would make sense to plan ahead.

    "Perhaps when the time comes that window will reveal itself to show us the future we have created. When we have to make the tough choice, to save the present or to save the future, or all futures. Perhaps to save us all sacrifices must be made, let us hope not"

    "The Protectors are tasked to protect the Light. This includes all futures as a darksider could flit in between all timelines. If we are not ready for what is to come then the future, all futures are lost. The Light will be lost. And if we lose all of the Light, all futures will be gone. And that is something that must not happen. Perhaps we may all have separate missions to undertake given to us by the Master and our Truths. But one thing is for sure, the future must be protected, at all costs"

    Perhaps." he simply stated before sitting up again. Turning to Vydra Dunkeel raised a hand, ready to clasp the others. "To the futures, to the light, that we may not fail, no matter what." It was a calm and level statement, and Dunkeel stared deeply into the others eyes, snout face on. Smelling for fear, for waver ,for anything besides musty books and resolve.

    This was probably another test. Dunkeel was sniffing around for fear, for a sign that Vydra wasn't ready.

    But he had been given his mission. And he would make sure he did not fail. He COULD not fail.

    He clasped the Chistori's hand firmly pouring resolve and determination into the Force "To the Protectors, the Light, the future and not falling to the darkness, to not fail in our duty and to our collaboration" he gave Dunkeel a smile to show that the Chistori he meant what he said.

    Mouth parting in a bit of a grin Dunkeel nodded his head before holding out his empty other hand. "Settled. Now if you aren't going to have another drink just yet, mind if I wet my gullet?"

    He was glad to see the librarian showing teeth, perhaps there was yet fire in this hide bounds belly. It filled him with a minor sense of levity and perhaps, just a little bit of hope as well.

    TAG: @Sinrebirth
     
  15. Kev-Mas_Colcha

    Kev-Mas_Colcha Jedi Grand Master star 5

    Registered:
    Dec 15, 2002
    Combo with @Sinrebirth

    IC: The Master, Zas'tel
    Hours later, hilltop

    All of a sudden, the Force told Zas’tel that the Master stood behind him, looming. He was almost leering, hands tucked behind his back but squeezed into fists.

    But the darker currents of the Force, those the cloak of the Master allowed him to access more naturally, told him again that it was all a facade.

    “What did you do?”

    His voice was sharp.

    “Or rather, what did you also not do?” The Masters voice jabbed at the Defel emotionally, antagonising the natural ‘fight-or-flight’ instincts that were hardwired into Zas’tel’s brain.

    "I certainly didn't invade someone else's thoughts," quipped Zas'tel, with a slight bit of annoyance in his tone of voice.

    It was pretty obvious that he didn't really understand what was really going on or what was at stake. Perhaps with all the Master's knowledge, he was incapable of comprehending everyone else's... lack of comprehension. Like someone looking down at a city from above, he could see the whole picture, but they couldn't make out the minor details one would be able to see with a more focused point of view. Minor details such as the fact that not everyone was as clairvoyant as he was, or even close to it.

    The Master threw his hands into the air. "I didn't read your mind, Zas'tel."

    He jabbed a finger at the Forcesaber on his belt. "My crystal is connected to you. I see what you see. What your apprentice sees. What their apprentice sees." He circled with his hands in time with each use of the word see, then threw them outwards. "So that means I saw what happened with Zinara."

    "Fine, fine," he said, perfectly amicable. "I antagonised you. I confess," he turned, one hand spinning again. "The whole fight-or-flight thing."

    He sighed. "Sorry, it's just... You missed something really, really big today, in the third lesson. We're going to have to go back so you can see it." He peered over his shoulder. "Ready to learn how to flow-walk?"

    Zas'tel sighed. There was no use fretting over what was already done. He couldn't change what had already happened.

    Or could he? The Master kept going on about time travel and what not. Maybe he could correct whatever mistakes he had made? If they even were mistakes in the first place? Zas'tel was doubting himself now. He didn't like that. He was always so sure and resolute. Now he was... not.

    "Flow-walk?" said Zas'tel, raising an eye, "Is that the time travel stuff you've been talking about?"

    “Yes and no,” he said, shaking his head. “It’s a way to go back into the Force, and view past events... but nothing can be changed. Only your memory of it can be.

    “Yes and no,” he said, shaking his head. “Flow-walking is a way to go back into the Force, and view past events... but nothing can be changed. Only your memory of it can be. And, by same extent - other people’s memories.”

    “As such, in your capacity as the Shadow, you wouldn’t want to be seen anyway, but if you were, then whomever would remember you being there, and, thus, notice whatever you had been looking into.” A shrug from the Master.

    “So we’re going to go back to the lesson, and I’m going to cloak you in the Force, to provide that extra layer of cover. We don’t want the others remembering that we were present, after all. It would adjust the flow if they reacted, remember.”

    Then we’ll learn about the Light.” It was a big statement. “And because I’ve told the others never, ever to access it. So if someone does, you’ll be responsible for keeping an eye so that I finally know who tried to change what is to be.”

    He held out a hand, lazily. “Ready to learn? To see what you missed in the third lesson?”

    A pause.

    “To learn what the Light truly is?” The Force seemed to open like a cloak, ready to embrace Zas’tel and make him truly invisible to any Force sense. Who knows? Perhaps the Master would even teach Zas’tel how to vanish.

    "Really? The light?" said Zas'tel lingering on that part of what the Master said, as if he had ignored everything else he said, "Still referring to it in a positive manner?"

    “Oh?” The Master curled his hand into a fist. “It’s just what it is, Zas’tel. But it’s not bright and brilliant - come, I’ll show you.”

    “We’re going to flow-walk now, to when the others access the Light. What is really known as the World Between Worlds to us mortals, but as the Light to the Celestials and the Maker.” His voice dropped an octave, as he held out his hand.

    “The way to space and time itself.”

    His shadowed face had not looked more impossible to peer into than now; but similarly the Master was staring into a hooded face too, for he had bequeathed Zas’tel a duplicate of his own cloak, protecting them both from the Dark.

    Zas'tel stood still as this bombshell of information as dropped on him. He nodded under his mimetic hood and uttered a single "Understood." recited as if it were a part of his routine.

    The Master placed his hand on Zas'tel's shoulder, and the sun seemed to flow backwards, impossibly. He had briefly showed the Defel the technique, and it was shown and done. "You will need to stay connected to me or you will drift. The important thing to remember is that you cannot change anything, only the memory of what others see."

    "So, it's fine if you see someone who is dead at your point in time, because it won't allow them to remember you. But, if it is someone who is alive contemporaneous to you, you risk them seeing what you did. Even then," he said, thoughtfully. "This won't change what is going to happen because they were always going to see you."

    As he spoke, they saw the sky and dimensions go black and white, and then five double-pyramid ships emerged from the sky, his fellow Protectors in reverse leaving the portal and then heading into the gap. The Master did not speak, and nor did he comment upon the voices that were speaking. "They are voices from the past and future. I can't clarify or we'll have temporal anomalies because you can't have a Holocron of Prophecy, remember."

    Let the past die.

    The boy has no father.

    Everything I tell you is lie.

    Mine.

    The Master brought them to the point where the ships had not yet came down, and Zas'tel could see the Master and the others. "We're cloaked by an illusion, don't worry," the Master holding his arm said, whispering as Vale nearly snapped at Joren over him being appointed the Leader. The Master huffed. "Hopefully that is the end of the issue, not the beginning. The Master was straining, much like the Master who was speaking to them strained as he leaped into his ThoSphere. The Master tugged at Zas'tel's arm, yanking him into the same Sphere.

    The Master ostensibly at the controls looked at the Master beside Zas'tel. "This is exhausting."

    "I know, I know." They looked at Zas'tel and spoke together.

    "We can't do this for long."

    As he got tugged into the ThoSphere, Zas'tel was a bit overwhelmed, to say the least. Now there were two masters? Huh? More visions from other times?

    He simply blinked, making a dumbfounded face, too spooked to even utter a word. Surely the Master, with all his supposed omnipotence, would understand the reasoning for his silence.

    The Master seemed quietly amused by matters, and as they arrived, he reassumed his cloak of them and they stood behind Vydra, Vale, Joren and Dunkeel.

    He was silent as the present day Master explained the World Between Worlds, that it was forbidden to access the realm, and explained that the Protectors would be guardians of this realm after the Celestials died at Mortis. The others were about as silent as Zas’tel, to no surprise. The four portals stood, stark in contrast to the distant places in this realm.

    The flow-walking Master folded his arms and the strain was evident of maintaining himself and his illusion, for he could not conceal it from Zas’tel. He spoke softly about the three lit portals - portals to three points in the future. “Jacen and Jaina; Ben and Rey; their joint Legacy...”

    “The future is going to happen; but if they are not to access this realm, that applies doubly to you - temporal anomalies and all that.” He expected Zas’tel to be just as awestruck as the others - perhaps even dumbstruck - but he needed to given the opportunity to comment.

    The Master gazed to him, gesturing vaguely at the four portals.

    Zas'tel nodded, slowly regaining composure.

    "And you just need me to watch, right? Why am I supposed to be involved anyways? Do you expect tampering to happen?"

    The Master nodded. “You need to watch or I can’t watch, true, but yes - I suspect there will be tampering. I suspect that someone will attempt to access the Light.”

    He slightly cringed. “Apologies, I know you do not care for light metaphors.”

    The lesson came to an end with Vale and Joren still at odds, and the air of conflict between Vydra and Dunkeel somewhat stuck to them. Within short order the present day Master dismissed them all, and they dispersed, and the Master of Zas’tel became one and the same.

    He promptly released a breath and sat on the grassy hill. “I will teach you how to hide in the Force, but creating illusions on that scale is going to be beyond you for the short term.” A huff. “But you will shortly be all but invisible, if you so wish, Zas’tel. Keep that hood of mine up, and my Forcesaber close by, and stay away from what will happen between the four of them.”

    A sigh, but again, a huff; the Master was truly work out. “I’ve tried to make them understand that what comes after is as important as what comes before, but we shall have to see.” He thrust a gloved hand a the Forcesaber he had bequeathed on Zas’tel. “I don’t know exactly how you manage to make it so that my Forcesaber travels for thirty six millennia, my friend, but you succeed nonetheless. Once they are finished, and you’ll know when, go off and keep it hidden, until the time is right, okay?”

    By ‘it’ of course referenced what they had spoken secretly, of, but only in part. The rest of the secret was something between Zas’tel and him, and would be until the last moment. “You’re going to have a lot to keep track of, soon.”

    The Master stood and leaned over Zas’tel; he was still taller than the Defel. “Just try and remember to turn up to the Fourth Grand Lesson, would ya?” He fluttered his hands, shrugging eloquently, the exterior of the Master completely rebuilt. “I did say it would be three or four final lessons, after all. Then you’ll be free to follow whomever of the Protectors that you wish.”

    Another jab of his finger in the air. “Alright?”

    Zas'tel cringed slightly at the metaphor as well, but let it slide. Was he perhaps getting used to it? He dismissed that notion, but his actions, or lack of actions did give it credence nonetheless.

    He just listened intently to the Master's instructions, and trusted that since he said he'd succeed, that he also managed to comprehend those instructions perfectly fine just now, and said nothing in reply and just nodded a yes in confirmation to the Master's query.

    Tag: @Sinrebirth
     
  16. HanSolo29

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

    Registered:
    Apr 13, 2001
    The following is a combo with the incredible QueenSabe7 – thank you so much!! :D

    IC: Vale Sera and Dr. Joren Graal
    Outside Café, Nouane City, Nouane

    Vale was alone, at home – the Clock-Temple.

    From her perch in a corner, her eyes swept across the adequately-sized room, here and there dotted with a personal possession or two. There hadn’t been much she wanted, or was able to bring with her when she officially moved in the day before, but what she had, she was grateful for.

    It had been just over two days since the third lesson and what took place after, and since then she had spent most of her time in isolation. Meditation had been a struggle but she tried repeatedly to get her thoughts and feelings back to a manageable level. She had succeeded a few times, but failed more.

    When she was awake, she was overwhelmed with all that had been revealed in her life as a Protector. When she was asleep, she only dreamt of Zinara.

    Placing the piece of parchment she had been studying back in its hiding spot, she stood and reached for a small datapad upon her nightstand – glancing longingly at a small holo next to it, of her and her wife in happier, easier times. Quickly refocusing on the device, she read back the line of messages to Zin, sent steadily over the past few weeks, but none answered. She sent yet another out into the void, feeling that soon enough she would be unable to do so any longer.

    I love you, always.

    At that, an alarm chimed from the datapad. A calming breath in, and a steady breath out, and Vale grabbed a light jacket from a chair and left. There would be a man she needed to speak with waiting for her at a small café in the Nouane city center, overlooking the river that snaked through it. Uncomfortably, it reminded her of the last time she had seen Joren outside of their Protector duties. But that was the purpose, wasn’t it.

    For his part, Joren had arrived early for their informal meeting. He wanted to say that he was simply being punctual, but he knew it was far more complicated than that; his wayward thoughts were causing too much of a distraction. While he had intentionally arranged this meeting to fall during his free time in-between lectures at the university, he found that he could not even get through his first session. He had dismissed the class early due to his inability to concentrate and made his way here in the midst of the lunch rush – nearly an hour early.

    All because of the Protectors and his duties; all because of Vale.

    Joren frowned at this realization and idly swirled the contents of his glass, which consisted of plain water. It wasn’t the most imaginative choice, but it seemed to reflect his sullen mood. Vale certainly had that kind of negative effect on him, ever since she had vehemently expressed her disapproval of his methods at the last lesson. He would be lying if he said that it had not made him wary.

    Even now, he could still recall her displeasure through the Force; it had almost bordered on obsessive. He thought it had been directly linked to their unfortunate encounter at the restaurant weeks ago, but no. She had been too adamant. This was something much more.

    But what did it all mean?

    Hopefully he would walk away from this meeting with the answer to that question.

    Shrugging off his sport coat and placing it on the back of the chair, Joren rose to his feet when Vale finally appeared on the veranda and approached the table. He refrained from touching her through the Force to show that he did not intend for this to turn confrontational. It was just her and him, as colleagues...not as enemies.

    “Vale,” he conveyed with a small smile, hoping to appeal to her by keeping his tone cordial. “Um, I’m glad you were able to make it. I know it can be difficult on short notice, but uh...have a seat. Please.”

    He gestured casually to the place setting across from him before settling back down in his own chair. An awkward silence soon followed, but Joren broke it with an admission that was long overdue. “I’m uh,” he cleared his throat stiffly, “I just wanted to start by saying that I’m sorry about Zinara. That, uh--well, it wasn’t my intention. If that had any bearing on your reaction...”

    The doctor shook his head with a light scoff and trailed off.

    Vale had taken her seat with only a single nod of acknowledgement in his direction, guarding herself a bit at first and most likely appearing more standoff-ish than she would have intended. She leaned back in her chair, releasing an audible breath through her nose as Joren spoke, working her jaw and clenching her teeth briefly before releasing the tension to let it roll off her chest. She held firm to her resolve that she not let her emotions rule her now. This moment was important, for more reasons than one.

    "Well, getting right to it, aren't we?" Her tone held the slightest drop of humor, and while she didn't change her hardened expression much, Joren might be able to sense that she was somewhat relieved - dancing around the topic at hand was pointless. It was best to be direct and... jump in. "Zinara had nothing to do with you, that was all my doing. You merely... sped up what would have happened eventually."

    She glanced away to the river nearby, struggling not to allow the memories of that night to become her focus. "Though I appreciate the thought." Closing her eyes, it was her turn to push on and this was the difficult part. With all Vale knew now... and all she could not say, she had thought over how best to approach this awkward situation and had to tread carefully. But again, she must be truthful and steeled herself to do so as she slowly returned her gaze to him.

    "It also has nothing to do with what happened at our last lesson. You should know, it is nothing personal, my concerns with you." A pause as she straightened and leaned forward a few inches. "I do not think you can, nor should be the one to lead. Whatever the Master's intentions in making such a... choice, you are not mine."

    Folding his hands together on the table top, Joren lifted his brow perceptively and leaned forward to study her. A hint of a smirk touched his lips, though it remained on the surface; he did not allow it to open up a window to his true emotions. He did not trust what it would reveal, particularly with the veracity behind Vale’s declaration. She was not only bold, but honest, and he knew that was only feeding into his personal insecurities.

    It was making him second-guess and overanalyze everything he knew...or thought he knew.

    Ever since...

    Shutting the door on those wayward thoughts, Joren exhaled slowly. “For not being a personal matter, you certainly have a very fervent point of view,” he stated evenly, making an effort to meet her gaze. “I’m not saying I disagree with you; I didn’t choose this role…”

    He trailed off for a moment, allowing his words to sink in so that she could form her own conclusions. There was the implication that he had questioned the Master’s decision at some point, but he clearly had no intention of elaborating further...at least, not yet. “...however, you can’t expect to make those kind of statements and not explain your reasoning. You didn’t even give me a chance to prove myself. If you don’t trust me, then…who?”

    Pursing his lips, he reclined back in his chair and narrowed his eyes slightly. “Unless this relates back to your idea of a unified leadership...what did you say?” He made a circular motion with his hand as he tried to recall the exact words. “‘All of us, or none of us?’”

    "There is nothing you need to 'prove'," Vale countered. "And trust isn't the issue, either. Because oddly enough, Joren, I find I do trust you despite knowing very little about you personally." Placing her forearms on the table and crossing them in over one another, her shoulders slumped and she shook her head slowly, sadness permeating her features.

    "When he leaves, it will be 'all of us, or none of us'. That is the only way this will work. One person to step into the role the Master is... vacating, is a dangerous decision." Knowing that he knew at least that much - that their mentor would supposedly disappear, and soon - there was no need to not confront it. It was one secret that need not be kept.

    "We should not need a new leader, when we already have one. And we should be trying to keep him, don't you think?" Her eyes were boring into Joren, pleading almost. Searching for the same things she felt in herself, and digging for others.

    Exhaling heavily, Joren broke eye contact with her and angled his gaze toward his hands, his fingers interlacing restlessly as he considered her words. She had touched on a very delicate subject, one that had been bothering him since the Master had introduced him to his Truth. He was hesitant to share his concerns, especially after hearing how passionate she was on her position...but what other choice did he have? She had trusted him enough to remain honest; the least he could do was return the same courtesy.

    If they were to succeed, they had to remain open to one another.

    “I...don’t know,” he muttered quietly, his brow furrowing with his internal struggle. A light scoff escaped his lips as he slowly lifted his blue eyes to search her features. “I’m probably stepping out on a limb here, but based on some recent observations, I’ve actually begun to question the Master’s motivations.”

    Before she could respond, Joren reached out and placed his hand on top of hers to appease her. “Just...hear me out for a sec, ok?” He nodded his head with a wan smile, seemingly embarrassed for even going this far. “All the talk about forbidden knowledge, the safeguards, naming a successor in such a careless way...how is that helping us? It’s all temptation. We are supposed to work as a team, yet it’s like he’s purposely leading us along to stir resentment within our ranks. The fact that we’re here...right now, holding this conversation is proof of that.

    “Maybe I’m crazy, but,” he shrugged with a sharp intake of breath, why would he do that?”

    Vale straightened slowly, leaning away in the process and carefully pulling her hand out from beneath his. The gesture hadn't made her uncomfortable, quite the opposite really, but Joren's words had. Doubt began to seep into her thoughts, ones she had stood firmly upon with a strength like durasteel. Though, her uncertainty wasn't directed at the old man that was the topic of this meeting, but towards the younger one that sat across from her now.

    Had she been naive, to trust so easily?

    "Are you... accusing the Master of subterfuge?" she asked loudly, too loudly. With obvious effort, she lowered her voice to a whisper. "Of lying?" Vale looked over her shoulder suddenly, the idea of being watched or having their conversation overheard making her feel as though she and Joren were doing something illicit, and wrong.

    Turning back to him, her eyes narrowed and her face hardened with resolution. "He loves us, his students, what would be the reason for attempting to set us up for failure? When so much is at stake?" She shook her head from side-to-side. "No. No, he is testing us. He wants us to succeed."

    "Do you?" The question was asked without an accusatory tone, but with a challenge.

    “I do, yes,” Joren replied firmly, inclining his chin to meet her with an unwavering gaze, a certain intensity reflecting in his blue eyes. “That’s why I thought it was appropriate to mention this now...before things get progressively worse. I don’t want to believe it, trust me when I say that, but…” He spread his hands across the table and sighed with resignation.

    He knew going into this that it would be difficult for Vale to accept such a notion, especially with her fracturing marriage upsetting a delicate balance in her life. From his perspective, it was as if she had affixed herself to the Master as a means to cope with the resulting pain and anguish. That wasn’t inherently bad in itself, she needed someone to lean on in such a troublesome time, but Joren had to wonder if perhaps that attachment was now hindering her ability to read the situation. Could she not identify the same clues he had seen over the course of the past few weeks?

    “Consider his last lesson,” he continued slowly, fully aware that he would need to tread carefully from this point forward. “What if by showing us the gateways, we fall into temptation and fulfill the prophecy he warned us about? What if it is our fault? The fate of the known galaxy is a lot to risk on the results of a simple test, don’t you think?”

    Joren smiled sadly and started to push his chair away from the table, preparing to rise. “I’m sorry, Vale...but I can’t shake this feeling. Something is off. Maybe that’s why the Master intends to flee – he planned for this.”

    Vale felt her chest tighten and a measure of heat rise in her blood. She did not move while Joren finished explaining his paranoia, keeping her anger at bay though feeling completely justified in her emotional reaction.

    How dare he.

    "Temptation," she began evenly, carefully. "Since that is what you are so fixated on, is everywhere, Joren. Not solely in what the Master has entrusted us to know. We were chosen to stare temptation straight in the face, the most seductive and forbidden kinds, and still have the strength to know it is best to turn away." Working to become less rigid, she leaned her arms on the table again and softened her tone. It gave her no pleasure in saying the next bit, but it seemed as if it at least needed to be acknowledged. "If you feel so strongly that you will not be able to handle the knowledge the Master has bestowed upon us, and clearly thinks we can, then perhaps this is not the path for you."

    Joren stifled a sigh and paused before he could rise fully to his feet, a faint smirk turning up one corner of his mouth. He suspected that from her vantage point, it probably resembled something that looked far more like a sneer. And that was just as well – she had no right to speak to him in that way, especially if events continued on their prescribed course. He was only trying to warn her.

    “It’s not myself I’m concerned about,” he retorted sharply, his expression hardening under the tension. “It’s about the group as a whole and how we work as a single unit. I sense…dissension there, uncertainty. Most of it has come in the wake of the Master’s latest lesson with…” he pursed his lips and looked around cautiously, “...well, you know.”

    This time he did allow himself to sigh, his shoulders slumping in the process. “Is that a simple coincidence?”

    Vale wanted to say more, so much more. But she forced herself into a moment of silence, instead focusing on all that had been revealed to her in the past few weeks, publicly and privately. Many truths, and secrets that she was being trusted to keep, that arguing would do no good to honor. Joren needed to be reassured, not pushed away. That is how she chose to see his concerns, anyway.

    If anything, what her fellow Protector had shared with her here and now, his attitude and generally suspicious outlook, told her so much more about him than she would have learned otherwise.

    "I do believe you are meant to be right where you are, for what it's worth," she offered, a small smile following. "However, it is apparent we do not see eye-to-eye on what's to come. You see him 'fleeing'," she held up one hand to demonstrate his point of view, and the other for her own. "Where I see him being forcibly removed." Vale took a deep breath, crestfallen at the direction this meeting took. "Maybe it might be best to speak with the others on this, all of us together, though you might think twice on sowing seeds of doubt where there might be too much soil for them to grow."

    Inhaling deeply through his nose, Joren lifted a hand to his face and slowly rubbed it along his jaw as he studied Vale intently. He wasn’t going to deny that they were on two different ends of the spectrum in terms of their views; that wasn’t something they could easily change. And yet, he idly wondered if perhaps his personal life was contributing to some of their problems – he was the only student who still lived beyond the walls of the temple and maintained a normal life outside of his duties.

    Did they view him differently because of that? Was that altering his perception of the Master and how he was conducting himself?

    If he were to carry on, he knew he had to find balance, but...

    Joren inwardly winced and pushed that thought from his mind, drawing his attention back to Vale with a subtle nod. “Noted,” he muttered in response to her veiled threat. He remained fairly composed despite her posturing, not wanting to widen the rift between them. “But if we can organize a formal meeting with everyone – outside of the temple grounds,” he continued in an even tone, his blue eyes holding steady on her form, “then yes, I’m willing to discuss it further; they deserve to know. But until then…”

    He flashed a cryptic grin and rose to his feet, straightening the collar of his coat. “I would prefer if this stays between us.”

    "Of course," Vale agreed with a nod, relaxing more now that it was clear Joren would be leaving. She couldn't press any further for fear of her anger returning and putting space back between them for a little while longer would be for the best, until their next - final - lesson or when the five of them spoke privately. Whichever happened first. First or last. For the end of the beginning, beginning of the end... and a goodbye.

    There was much to prepare for, and for so much of it she didn't know how to.

    "You should trust the four of us more," she chose to add in parting, her sincerity carrying in the Force. Vale dared to reach for him then, whatever meager connection they might share, she tried to relay the ties between them and how precious that was to have. How it needed to be stronger. "Your faith in us, and us in you... is crucial."

    And that was all she had left to say.

    With his hand trailing along the edge of the table, Joren hesitated and angled his chin slightly to regard her. He could feel the delicate tendrils through the Force as she reached out to him across the short distance that separated him, offering both confidence and strength. The doctor embraced this fully, returning her sentiments with equal fervor...and with a smile that now extended up to his eyes.

    “I know,” Joren replied simply, his voice a gentle rumble. “I’ve already taken steps to fix that.” He quirked a single brow knowingly. “Why do you think I entrusted you with this information? I do trust you, Vale...remember that.”

    Joren rapped his hand lightly on the table and moved to leave the sidewalk café; he had a class to teach in 15 minutes.

    TAG: @QueenSabe7; @Sinrebirth
     
  17. Sinrebirth

    Sinrebirth Immortal Mod-King of the EUC, Lit, RPF and SWC star 8 Staff Member Manager

    Registered:
    Nov 15, 2004
    The Fourth Great Lesson

    IC: The Master

    One week after the Third

    This time, the large table to the front of the room was adorned with a map of the city of Nouane. It was split into the four districts, with little pointers on the corners of the map to the northern hills, and to the southern villages. The east and west of the city were caught by the valley edges, as ever.

    The Master stood at the rear of the room, by his workbench, arms tucked behind him, and his back to his students. His black cowl remained up, and he seemed to be peering off into the future, as was his want.

    “So three Dark Ones exist in both - Bane, Sidious and Wyyrlok... but is Wyyrlok always a Force user, or is he merely picking up on the echo from -”

    He uttered to himself, softly, but not invisibly. He turned to the students, infinitesimally pausing as he caught the shadowed corner of the room, for Zas’tel was completely hidden there, but his circle was completed and he peered at the milling students.

    He had seen them all this past week. Bequeathing the final name, the trap, the heresy, and the prophecy. His students were better with him on individual terms, but as a group they were wary. Not quite suspicious, but concerned by what was to come.

    “Open forum discussion for you all. Topic of discussion; “It should not be the responsibility of one. Leader or not, we will fall apart if we are all not open and honest with each other. We should consent together. It should be all of us – all of us, or none of us.”

    “It’s a good topic of discussion.” He said, quoting Vale to Joren. He gestured to the table. “And it’s the basis of our discussion today.”

    He took a breath. “Following an altercation in the City with one Zinara Sera, which Zas’tel intervened in before he left on his mission, there is a growing concern about the conduct of the Protectors and the power we wield.” He paused slightly to allow Vale the chance to recover.

    “The City Council and the representatives of the Four Quarters are asking that you each select a sector of the City to patrol. Lords Chandrila, Alsakan and Nubia, as well as Lady Alderaan, being north, east, west and south respectively, each require you to pick one to take care of.” He was conscious that some of them would not be equipped to run such endeavours. Dunkeel? Vydra? No idea. “You would acquire responsibility for twenty officers in the areas, which will accept instructions from you but will otherwise continue their patrol routes without direct guidance. These will become your Orders, and I shall set some rules about this.” He could see Vale taking an active role in doing what she had essentially before, but the others would likely defer to the men and women who were most equipped to deal with this. Maybe Joren would issue some directions, the Master thought somewhat jovially.

    What the Master didn’t yet know was how their chats during the week break had gone, but he was sure they would be teased out during this week’s lesson. Everything was, by and large, on-course, and he had no choice but to persist. “First rule; no alliances. I don’t expect these officers to be turned into private armies. You are beholden to the people, not the other way around - but how you express that protection I leave to you.”

    “Secondly; no cross-pollination. Your groups stay as they are. Recruiting from each other’s Orders will create an imbalance that will end up with you being drawn into the mundane world to rectify. I’d rather you just keep the Orders separate from your Protector duties.”

    He shrugged. This was menial to him. A consequence of what he had done thus far. It hadn’t changed the narrative per se and he would not experiment with greater changes; not ever.

    Everything was too dangerous otherwise.

    But they had been called upon, and so, they would serve. This would be a change of pace for them each; the practical rather than the realm of the Force itself.

    TAG: @Mitth_Fisto, @HanSolo29, @QueenSabe7, @Jerjerrod-Lennox, @Kev-Mas_Colcha
     
    Last edited: Aug 22, 2019
  18. Jerjerrod-Lennox

    Jerjerrod-Lennox Jedi Grand Master star 7

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


    And they were all back together again.

    It had been a week since he had had his philosophical chat with Dunkeel and that had gone better than expected. With a collaborator in hand it would make his task easier.

    He now had a new mission bequeathed to him by the Master and in part thanks to the decision he had made. The only question remained, would the others try to stop him when the time came or would they be able to come along for the ride?

    He didn't want to do this alone, he didn't know if he could handle it. But if he had to he would do for the sake of the future. And if anybody tried to stop him...he didn't even want to think about that either.

    The shadow was missing again and Vydra was getting fed up with his absences. Yet again more questions than answers regarding this one. Vydra’s suspicions that something was going on were getting bigger now, perhaps the Master had something secret going on with him, perhaps the shadow was keeping to the darkness for a reason. Who knew. But Vydra would make sure the shadow would not ruin things. The balance depended on it.

    Vale and Joren were back as well which was good news. Whether they had ironed out their differences and whether Vale had accepted Joen as leader was a different thing altogether. Also whether he could have a chat with Joren about things would depend on what happened next. They hadn't had time to chat due to the lessons but he hoped at least before the end that they could have at least one more chat.

    It would be a shame when it all came to ahead to leave their friendship in a black hole.

    The table at the front of the room was covered in a map of Nouane City itself and Vydra wondered what the Master had in mind for this final lesson. The Master himself was turned towards the wall seemingly lost in thought or perhaps having a chat with himself. Vydra knew the Master could be quite eccentric at times, perhaps he was discussing with himself something that only he was privy to.

    Talking to yourself may be crazy to some people but at least you get the right answers, he thought with an inward smile.

    The Master turned to them all and began.

    “Open forum discussion for you all. Topic of discussion; “It should not be the responsibility of one. Leader or not, we will fall apart if we are all not open and honest with each other. We should consent together. It should be all of us – all of us, or none of us.”

    “It’s a good topic of discussion.” he gestured to the table in front of him “And it’s the basis of our discussion today.”

    It seemed to Vydra that Joren and Vale had possibly had as philosophical discussion as he and Dunkeel by the sounds of it. Vydra knew he probably wasn't the only one with secret missions or things they had to do. And yet they could not tell each other what was happening. So it seemed a bit hypocritical to say such a thing when they all contained their own secrets of what was to come or what they had to do and so forth. Vydra concerned as he was wanted to tell someone but he had been sworn to silence.

    They had been brought together as a team but they seemed further apart than ever. And when the time came would they work together or just end up squabbling amongst each other?. Again would Vydra have to go it alone?

    Questions….

    The Master continued “Following an altercation in the City with one Zinara Sera, which Zas’tel intervened in before he left on his mission, there is a growing concern about the conduct of the Protectors and the power we wield.”

    Looks like the shadow had gotten himself into a bit of a bother….

    “The City Council and the representatives of the Four Quarters are asking that you each select a sector of the City to patrol. Lords Chandrila, Alsakan and Nubia, as well as Lady Alderaan, being north, east, south and west respectively, each require you to pick one to take care of.”

    Vydra’s heart sunk again (he wished it would stop doing that), he was nowhere near being leadership material and now having a sector to patrol seemed a test of his new abilities, to work for the people.

    “You would acquire responsibility for twenty officers in the areas, which will accept instructions from you but will otherwise continue their patrol routes without direct guidance. These will become your Orders, and I shall set some rules about this.”

    Oh bloody hell…..


    He was nowhere near ready for this. Along with his mission and keeping an eye on things, how could he do this? Would anyone listen to a librarian giving orders? And if something happened would have to intervene?. He hoped not as he had sworn himself to defend not attack at all costs. And if an officer got out of line how could he handle that?. Would he have to be firm, or perhaps a softer approach/ This was crazy in his eyes. He knew they had to be visible but more as defenders of the people not wandering around with officers.

    They could be seen as puppets of the government, and how would people react to that?.

    He supposed though with his new mission that he had to try to lead and this was a good chance to do so. And he would have to make a choice as to which sector to patrol. As the Master continued to speak he kept one eye on the map to see what would pop out at him.

    “First rule; no alliances. I don’t expect these officers to be turned into private armies. You are beholden to the people, not the other way around - but how you express that protection I leave to you.”

    “Secondly; no cross-pollination. Your groups stay as they are. Recruiting from each other’s Orders will create an imbalance that will end up with you being drawn into the mundane world to rectify. I’d rather you just keep the Orders separate from your Protector duties.”


    Basically it seemed it was like this: no pinching from each other, no working with each other, no turning your officers into your own personal cadre and make sure you kept your Protector duties separate. Simple really.

    Vydra didn't know whether he would do with his. All things being equal he would rather stay out of the way and let them do their normal jobs. If anything happened then he would have to deal with it but not so much that his Protector duties were neglected. This would interfere with his overall mission and he didn't like it. But he would have to do this to make sure the people knew that the Protectors were not just monks sitting around in a Temple meditating on the future.

    He would give it a go.

    As to which sector he didn't know the east and south sides of the city as much so they were out. The west side was where his home was and if his family saw him out on patrol his mother and father (especially his father) would be worried but at least they could see him. Venezia however would be following him around all day just to make sure he was alright. Bit too much of a risk there.

    The northern sector however seemed to be the quietest. Only the Protectors and other religious cults dwelled here. Hopefully not much trouble to be had here but you never could tell. Plus he could see the other religious cults and the knowledge they had, probably as good as a library. He wouldn't obviously mix with them too much lest they taint his Protectorship but he could show them that the Protectors were here to protect and serve. And since Vydra was a bit of a philosopher now this felt like home to him.

    Plus he wouldn't be too far away from his family in case of emergency. Although his father would have a fit if he knew he was on patrol here. Vydra would argue though that it was better than possibly the more dangerous parts of the city.

    Northern sector it was.

    He looked the Master straight in his cowl “I will take the Northern sector to patrol” he said simply and did not offer a reason.

    He only hoped like his mission he was ready for this challenge.

    TAG: @Sinrebirth , @HanSolo29 , @Mitth_Fisto , @QueenSabe7
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 17, 2019
  19. Mitth_Fisto

    Mitth_Fisto Force Ghost star 6

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

    Coming into the classic location of their training, the smell and even the feel of the Force in here was like a perpetual warm embrace. There were differences, as always with anything that was truly lived in and not merely for show. This time, the large table to the front of the room was adorned with a map of the city of Nouane. It was split into the four districts, with little pointers on the corners of the map to the northern hills, and to the southern villages. The east and west of the city were caught by the valley edges, as ever.

    The Master stood at the rear of the room, by his workbench, arms tucked behind him, and his back to his students. His black cowl remained up, and he seemed to be peering off, as was his want, muttering to himself.

    “So three Dark Ones exist in both - Bane, Sidious and Wyyrlok... but is Wyyrlok always a Force user, or is he merely picking up on the echo from -”

    Dunkeel listened passively, some names were starting to gain meaning and now with the World Between Worlds and their holocrons of prophecy - context. The Master turned to the students, infinitesimally pausing as he caught the shadowed corner of the room before his circle was completed and he peered at the milling students.

    There was that scent again, the one that had not been strong before. The fifth was back and apparently had practiced hiding while they had learned of other things. Eying the librarian and the leader he nodded to each, before the last mystery beyond the shadows. The sole woman of their group he gave a blinking nod. Most were focused on The Master, so it would be nothing. But it was something to him and that was what mattered most.

    “Open forum discussion for you all. Topic of discussion; “It should not be the responsibility of one. Leader or not, we will fall apart if we are all not open and honest with each other. We should consent together. It should be all of us – all of us, or none of us.”

    “It’s a good topic of discussion.” He said, quoting someone. He gestured to the table. “And it’s the basis of our discussion today.”

    It was the quote of the hill. Sighing he waited as he already knew his answer. The One and the All.

    He took a breath. “Following an altercation in the City with one Zinara Sera, which Zas’tel intervened in before he left on his mission, there is a growing concern about the conduct of the Protectors and the power we wield.” Eyes narrowing Dunkeel glared at The Master's words. He could smell him. He was sure of it.

    “The City Council and the representatives of the Four Quarters are asking that you each select a sector of the City to patrol. Lords Chandrila, Alsakan and Nubia, as well as Lady Alderaan, being north, east, south and west respectively, each require you to pick one to take care of.” Dunkeel waved his head at the notion. “You would acquire responsibility for twenty officers in the areas, which will accept instructions from you but will otherwise continue their patrol routes without direct guidance. These will become your Orders, and I shall set some rules about this.”

    “First rule; no alliances. I don’t expect these officers to be turned into private armies. You are beholden to the people, not the other way around - but how you express that protection I leave to you.”

    Protectors serve. We do not monger the present, we guard the future.

    “Secondly; no cross-pollination. Your groups stay as they are. Recruiting from each other’s Orders will create an imbalance that will end up with you being drawn into the mundane world to rectify. I’d rather you just keep the Orders separate from your Protector duties.”

    Each shall have their own path and shall not meddle in the others mundane affairs less they consume you.

    The Master shrugged. Vydra muttered and gave his own choice up. The North, Dunkeel's own first choice was taken. Just like that. He nodded in acknowledgement. The South was open, but he knew his own issues with that district. He knew it too well. He had left it behind and chosen the North. Chosen The Master, the Protectors.

    Placing a hand down on the table he snorted as he searched the map. That infernal smell. If only for them he thought of the South, going back again and dealing with that obstacle. Of the three of them left he did not envy that position and yet did not wish to force it. "I Would like the East, but am willing the South if non other wants the challenge." he simply stated. Waiting to see if the others would want such a hard thing. Or give him what he saw as a harder teacher and challenge in East Lord Alsakan.

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

    QueenSabe7 Chosen One star 6

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

    Vale was nestled comfortably on the opposite side of the table from the Master - his work desk at one end, she standing at the other. This was not because she sought to put distance between herself and her teacher, but more to have the vantage point of discreetly observing them all at once, save their wily fifth member whom she could sense but not see as ever.

    Watching, her eyes had drifted periodically to the large map that covered most of the table’s surface, depicting the four main regions of Nouane’s capital city. She lingered longest on the south, her former home.

    Where Zinara still resided.

    Peripherally Vale heard the Master’s mutterings, some names she took in but didn’t overanalyze, before he turned to acknowledge his students formally. She was anxious to begin the new lesson, supposedly their last with him present. Her throat tightened and she forced herself to swallow the lump that had formed there, blinking back a tear before it fell. Her stomach remained in knots and she took a deep breath, pulling on the soothing energies of Light to retain her calm. Then, she listened.

    Surprisingly, he chose to start with her own words, last spoken back on the hill top a week earlier. She had not been responded to then, only privately by Joren, and she was grateful that their mentor chose to bring it back up at such a sobering time as this. While she still wished to honor Dr. Graal’s request that they all speak off grounds, and without the Master present, perhaps right here was the only opportunity they would get.

    Though, as he continued on it was clear that he would not be addressing her concerns as they were, but twisting them into another issue altogether. She stiffened, eyes narrowing as he brought up her estranged spouse, somehow having become entangled in her world even now, when she had made clear that she wanted nothing to do with the Protectors or the Force. Or the woman she had once vowed to love through life, and beyond.

    Vale became visibly uncomfortable, but would keep her emotions under wraps. The past several days had been spent in seclusion, same as since she had moved into the Clock-Temple and she had taken that time to hone her skills of personal concealment. How she felt about certain topics were no one’s business but her own, and while still a work in progress, she had been training to keep them that way.

    Still, if anyone was looking closely, she shifted and grimaced, a fleeting physical manifestation of how she felt on the subject. Was Zinara’s encounter with the Shadow a military assignment or a personal one, seeking out these issues on her own? Was she trying to get even in some way, as payment for the lies and betrayal? After weeks of refusing to return any of her attempts at contact, she had only assumed that her wife was putting as much effort as she could to widen the gap that had grown between them, not trying to bring them back together through seemingly malicious means.

    If she was coming after her beliefs and her… companions – she couldn’t call them family just yet, well… not all of them, anyways – this made things very personal.

    Or, also just as likely, she was giving control to her paranoia in the face of so much uncertainty.

    Shaken, but not distracted, Vale skirted her edge of the table, not at all intrigued by the result of Zinara’s puzzling involvement - their new ‘assignments’. Given by the City Council apparently, though that she did not entirely believe.

    “We walk through a Celestial realm mere days ago, and now we are to become simple patrol guards,” she stated after a long sigh, once the Master was done speaking. It was old hat for her, something she already did as part of her military duties, though not as often now that she was of a higher rank. She didn’t think the job beneath her, that wasn’t it at all, it was just another jarring change of pace that made her head spin.

    "I Would like the East, but am willing the South if non other wants the challenge." Her head turned to Dunkeel, who had followed Vydra’s acceptance of the North with one of his own.

    “Have the East,” Vale offered with a patient smile. “I will take the southern region.” Nodding to both of them, she stared at Joren last.

    By default he would have to take the West, but again, she found little to fret over where these new marching orders were concerned. Resting her hands on the table and leaning forward slightly, she returned her attentions to the being directly across from her, searching the shadows of his cowl.

    “Is this all you meant to address?” she questioned conversationally. Still eyeing the others with an occasional glance, she teetered on the edge of speaking up, or letting go.

    TAGS: @Sinrebirth @Mitth_Fisto @HanSolo29 @Jerjerrod-Lennox @Kev-Mas_Colcha
     
  21. Sinrebirth

    Sinrebirth Immortal Mod-King of the EUC, Lit, RPF and SWC star 8 Staff Member Manager

    Registered:
    Nov 15, 2004
    IC: The Master
    The Great Lesson Four

    There was not a great deal of enthusiasm for this task, and he appreciated that. It was murky, and politics to boot. But they picked their areas, slowly but surely. South to Vale, north to Vydra.

    Of course.

    Vale was already standing both apart from the others and setting herself up as defender of her home and roots. A great certainty she now held; shades of what had occurred between her and Joren played out here. But if she was making sure to keep an eye on them all, so be it.

    Alderaan; the Goddess of Acceptance and Love.

    Vydra of course was focused on the clock-Temple. On home; on the future. The Master softly wondered. Was home what they protected, or did they abandon it to save the future? But if Vydra cared for what was to come, so be it.

    Chandrila; the Goddess of Culture and Nature.

    Dunkeel spoke up for the east, though he preferred the north, no doubt. He lived here, and had done so for some time. Much like Zas’tel had, before being asked to leave.

    Alaskan; the God of Independence and Self.

    That left Joren, the ostensible leader, who always seemed to speak first and last. He would by default take the west, as the economic heartland of the City. Diametrically opposed to the east, the business leaders often disagreed with the politicians in City Hall, but with the weighting between softer concepts in the others the City balanced itself out.

    Nubia, the God of Commerce and Luck.

    While Master waited for him to speak up, he turned his cowl slowly to Vale and her question, arms tucked around his back and a slight hunch as he did so. The slowness of his turn was not indicative of his displeasure, as if fixing Vale with a glare, but of a thought process; some of them could still detect Zas’tel, even faintly. The Master would redouble his efforts to teach the Defel to hide in the Force; he could not afford for the future to be seen through a lens which itself impacted the view.

    By the time he had completed his turn, his thought process was similarly finalised. “Holocron’s out.”

    “Out,” he stood up, brandishing his hands at them. “Out, out, out.” He pointed to the table. “We have an entry to access.”

    “Hurry, hurry.”

    This would be the first time they saw each other’s Holocron’s. It would be a geometry display, of course, but he would simply point out that they are all different and thus have different Holocron’s, before casually referencing the new shape behind him, which had the appearance of being half completed.

    He wondered if Zas’tel would spike with anticipation; he had not a Holocron of Prophecy. He could cause temporal anomalies if he did. But this was important.

    It was time to lay the last piece of the puzzle.

    Once and for all.

    The Master felt his trepidation building. But in the Force he was silent; his body language was perfect; his projected self was nothing more than the foppish teacher.

    TAG: @HanSolo29 (please reply first and include this prompt), @QueenSabe7, @Jerjerrod-Lennox, @Mitth-Fisto, @Kev-Mas_Colcha (you may respond as and when this week but please do)


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  22. HanSolo29

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

    Registered:
    Apr 13, 2001
    IC: Dr. Joren Graal
    The Clock Temple, Nouane

    At the end of their week recess, Joren had returned dutifully to the Clock Temple to join the others, but not without reluctance. Between the previous lesson on the hilltop, the clandestine meeting in the middle of the night with the Master, and his discussion with Vale, his outlook had changed profoundly. He was more wary about their purpose and of the Master’s grand design – whether he was sincere, or simply leading them along to carry out some ulterior motive.

    Despite his best efforts, he was also beginning to question his own existence here – why did he continue to attend these lessons? He had originally set out to seek answers; to discover the fundamental truth behind the mysteries of the Force, but now he wasn’t so sure. Things have expanded far beyond that goal, and he was no longer certain about his path and what he hoped to achieve through his experiences with the Protectors.

    All of this coalesced with the terrible truths the Master had revealed to them through the various lessons and Holocron readings; of the responsibilities and hardships they would be forced to endure once he was gone; of a future that was disastrously bleak and seemed nearly impossible to change. It all weighed heavily upon Joren, crushing his resolve and occupying every waking thought. He could not sleep at night, and he found himself distracted and lagging behind in his professional duties at the university.

    It was not a sustainable life, and he often wondered how long it would take before he reached the breaking point? Again, he recalled the Master encouraging him to find balance between his two roles, but Joren feared it would not be so simple...not anymore, not with his recent suspicions.

    And if it came down to a single choice, could he make that decision?

    Joren rued over that thought as he angled his chin toward the ground and studied his fellow Protectors from afar. He noted that the mysterious fifth member of their group had once again failed to make his presence known. If he had to guess, his absence was likely connected to the Master’s plans of intrigue. A secret initiative, perhaps? Joren knew that they were all harboring secrets; the old man apparently thrived off them. But if they weren’t careful, those secrets could ultimately destroy them.

    Pursing his lips, Joren closed his eyes briefly against that possibility before seeking out the others as a source of comfort – Vydra, the reptilian man, and yes...even Vale. While he did not reach out to touch them individually, he could still perceive their worry, doubt, and frustration through the Force; a whirlwind of emotions that were all so similar to his own. It helped to bolster his confidence in regards to the private meeting he wished to conduct with them. It gave him hope that perhaps they could come to a mutual understanding on matters and find some much-needed insight.

    And it couldn’t happen soon enough.

    The Master revealed yet another obligation that played heavily into Joren’s current state of mind, increasing his anxiety and arousing his anger in one swift gesture. It took a lot for him to lose his composure, but he found the old man’s directive simply insulting:

    “The City Council and the representatives of the Four Quarters are asking that you each select a sector of the City to patrol,” he explained evenly, his tone bereft of its usual eccentricity. “Lords Chandrila, Alsakan and Nubia, as well as Lady Alderaan, being north, east, west and south respectively, each require you to pick one to take care of.”

    Pressing his lips together firmly to prevent himself from saying something he would later regret, Joren folded his arms across his chest and listened with mild disdain as the Master carried on about their new responsibilities: they were to have no alliances, they could not integrate with other patrol groups, and most of all...they were to keep their Protector duties separate from the rest.

    “Easy for you to say,” he muttered under his breath with a derisive scoff. He did not need this weight added to his shoulders, not when he was already struggling to find balance between his professional career, his private life, and his role as a Protector. Once more, he found his thoughts straying toward that elusive breaking point…

    How long would it take?

    The doctor remained fixated on that question while the others spoke up to claim their stake in this elaborate game, choosing their desired sectors through the process of elimination. This left Joren with the West, though he hardly seemed to notice. Aside from Vale’s brief comment, they did not express any discontent over their new roles. That probably irritated him more than it should have, but he ultimately held his ground and kept his mouth shut. If anyone was going to take the brunt of his ire, it was the Master himself; he wanted to speak with him directly about this.

    Before he had that opportunity, however, Vale pushed forward with a rather crude question. “Is that all you meant to address?”

    While her tone remained conversational, it still managed to exemplify her brash attitude, maybe even bordering on disrespect. Joren would’ve normally disapproved of such audacity, but now he only stared at her as he narrowed his eyes curiously. Was that a sign of her own annoyance showing through? At any rate, it was enough to promptly change the subject.

    “Holocrons out,” the Master ordered without preamble, rising to his feet and waving his hands at them like an impatient child. “Out, out out. We have an entry to access. Hurry, hurry.”

    This moment should have been a revelation of sorts, a true awakening for all of them to finally witness and experience each others’ Holocrons. And yet, Joren shrugged it off as another menial task, even as the Force resonated strongly in the air around them. He was still distracted, his mind wandering elsewhere and dwelling on previous matters that demanded a resolution.

    “I hope this will make more sense than relegating us to guard duty,” Joren quipped with an edge to his voice as he reached into the knapsack at his feet and produced his Holocron. He considered its pyramidal shape before setting it down on the wooden desk with a soft thud. That’s when he noted the large, circular object resting behind the Master, but only because the old man gestured to it with some enthusiasm. It looked fragile, as if it was still under construction.

    Another Holocron, perhaps?

    The doctor inhaled deeply and pulled his gaze away, his eyes wandering accusingly toward the Master as if to demand answers.

    TAG: @Sinrebirth; @QueenSabe7; @Jerjerrod-Lennox; @Mitth_Fisto; @Kev-Mas_Colcha
     
    Last edited: Aug 23, 2019
  23. Jerjerrod-Lennox

    Jerjerrod-Lennox Jedi Grand Master star 7

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


    Vydra felt comfortable in his choice.

    After all his mission was about the future and what better way to preserve it than being near his new home. He need not explain this to the others, well not yet anyway. Hopefully they would understand why he had chosen it.

    He felt the connection there: he would become Lord Chandrila, the Goddess of Culture and Nature. It was a bit confusing how he would become a Lord and part of a Goddess but he didn't mind. He was Protecting both male, female and undetermined so he was fine with the mix. As a librarian he had studied different cultures, dialects and people so it was well within his remit. Nature though he was not sure about although he did appreciate a good view, animals and plants and how they helped the ecosystem of Nouane.

    Vydra began to scan around with the Force trying to find the shadow, as the others announced their choices. He knew the others were probably doing the same, they were all suspicious of him and why he had decided to leave. But Vydra knew he was probably about somewhere, watching them all, watching to see if anyone would make a misstep. The Master knew he was here as well, it was a shame that the Master had decided to play games with them all regarding the shadow.

    Dunkeel had chosen the east which was where the government resided as well as the agricultural side of things. He was an apt choice Vydra thought it suited him well as he was quite an independent person.

    Vale took the south which was where the military presided. He had thought she had a military bearing about her, the way she walked and talked simply shouted out “military” to him.

    That left Joren with the west which is what Vydra had thought he would have chosen. It was Vydra’s second choice after the north. But he could sense some unease in his friend. Whereas Vydra’s worries were shining through, Joren’s seemed more like Vydra felt at the beginning, that everything was crushing him, probably because he was the leader he didn't want the others to sense any weaknesses. He could feel Joren reaching out to them all as a group and \Vydra tried to send a little bit of reassurance his way. Jst to make sure his friend knew that at least he had one supporter.

    Vale however was still voicing dissent, or being argumentative and Vydra was resisting the urge not to sigh. Was this all because of her Truth or was she just like that in general?. Vydra didn't know but it was clear that the Master could possibly end up being exasperated with her. But with the Master being quite eccentric who knew what he was thinking.

    “Holocron’s out.” the Master said, “Out,” he stood up, brandishing his hands at them. “Out, out, out.” He pointed to the table. “We have an entry to access.”

    “Hurry, hurry.”

    “I hope this will make more sense than relegating us to guard duty,” said Joren and Vydra shot him a look that said “Not helpful”. It seemed his time with Vale and rubbed off on him a little bit it seemed and Vydra hoped that Joren remembered he was still married and had a kid on the way. Perhaps being the leader he had an inkling of things to come, perhaps he should focus on his kid’s future instead of letting Vale rub off on him.

    Joren had a pyramidal Holocron. Interesting. Vydra said nothing as he removed his from his bag his Holocron which looked like a shard of crystal shoved into some spiky red stuff. He placed his on the table next to Joren’s and his curiosity spiked as to what the others had for theirs. Everything was contained within these and Vydra knew that their Truth’s must have been in here too, he must not be the only one to learn their destinies from their Holocrons.

    The Force was holding its breath again as if something big was about to be revealed. But it could be misdirection, it could be that nothing big would be revealed, just something small. Vydra had spotted that there was something that looked half completed behind the Master. Vydra took a guess that it could be another Holocron, perhaps the Master was preparing like Vydra was for the future and what was to come, chronicling all that he had seen and done and his teachings for the future. Vydra could understand that.

    Vydra worried though that everything could be revealed too early. That the others were not ready for whatever was about to be revealed. Their secrets were about to be unleashed and bombshells were about to be dropped.

    Were they prepared? They had to be.

    TAG: @Sinrebirth , @HanSolo29 , @QueenSabe7 , @Mitth_Fisto , @Kev-Mas_Colcha
     
  24. QueenSabe7

    QueenSabe7 Chosen One star 6

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

    “Holocron’s out.”

    Vale tucked her head down to her chest and closed her eyes for a breath. And then another, deeper and slower. Then one more.

    Steady.

    She slowly came back up, pushing back from her forearms and taking a seat in the chair next to her. She did not slump but remained at attention, reaching into the inside pocket of her sleeved cloak and grasping her holocron as was requested. Laying it gently on the edge of the map that covered most of the table top in front of her, her eyes traveled its surface for the umpteenth time before turning to willfully gaze upon the others.

    It didn’t bother her in the least that they were being asked to reveal these devices for all to see – she felt so many secrets swirling between each of them, also them and the Master. One less, no matter how insignificant as the shape and color, not the contents, of a holocron might be, she would gladly release that weight from her conscience.

    Dunkeel’s was a mystery for a moment more, as was the Shadow’s… though Vale did idly wonder if the constant state of their fifth member meant that his device would stay shrouded just as its owner did. Joren and Vydra had already placed theirs out for viewing and she took them in curiously – a red pyramid and a mess of crimson spikes, respectively. The latter caused her to face to crinkle as she took in the crude shape of it, if you could say it had one particular shape, that is. In a way, the uneven angles caused her some unease.

    Both of them did, actually. Hers a simple cube with a glowing blue hue to its creases, it spoke to her more of calm and knowledge. The darker tones of theirs gave them an edge of something not quite quantifiable, but she shifted anxiously the longer she stared. She chose to attribute the cause of these emotions to the pull of the Force from any one of the holocrons, and how different they all felt. It created odd undercurrents that were new, if a bit disconcerting.

    Settling into them, Vale looked back towards Dunkeel, waiting expectantly for his to be shown next. As she did, it was fairly easy to sense a certain level of pressure begin to build, the lesson obviously gearing up for something monumental. She supposed it all hinged on which entry it was the Master wished to show them, together.

    TAGS: @Sinrebirth @HanSolo29 @Mitth_Fisto @Jerjerrod-Lennox @Kev-Mas_Colcha
     
  25. Sinrebirth

    Sinrebirth Immortal Mod-King of the EUC, Lit, RPF and SWC star 8 Staff Member Manager

    Registered:
    Nov 15, 2004
    IC: The Master
    Grant Lesson Four

    This was a calculated risk.

    There were entries that the others had skimmed, about the future as a general sense. Sub-entries, years, months, even names and places. There were so many to collate, and he had spent a great deal of time on the Holocrons. Exhaustively. If anything, handing them out into the world had created a wave of new patterns, but his intention to do so had started the entire endeavour.

    The Master eyed the geometries of them all.

    The cube, the pyramid, the Tho Yor shape, and of course the shape that defied expression in simple shapes. These holocrons would all have their fates, and the geometry would speak volumes in the future. But, that was then, and they were here, and now. Vydra did good not to betray himself.

    As Dunkeel finalized pulling his Tho shaped Holocron out, which floated lightly, the Master wheeled on Joren. "It is all fine and dandy sitting in our safe Clock-Tower, pontificating on the future, or, perhaps, overthinking, but at some point we need to practically maintain what is to come. Unless the Apocalypse is to be a relief from the world that we allowed to be created?" His voice was a little teasing. "My teachings are for us to focus on what is to be, to keep the balance, to protect the Light; not to neglect our wider and smaller responsibilities." His finger nearly jabbed forward.

    He very nearly asked about Joren's wife and child. But that would be inappropriate. He liked Joren, but he was a fulcrum here - as were they all. Any one of them could precipitate the end of the story before it even began.

    Instead he clapped his hands, a little discharge of electricity bursting out. He writhed his fingers as he spread his hands, lightning rippling from finger to finger. It crawled up his arms, and the Master dispersed it, causing a flash. He gestured, sharply. "There!" He was pointing at their feet. "Darkness is attached to the very soles of our feet. We all cast shadows, and our light, our few lights, will cast an incredible shadow." He had to ignore Zas'tel, and his aversion to metaphors about the light and dark. If he was present - and he was becoming more difficult to sense, even for the Master - and plowed on.

    The Master spoke to the holocrons, channeling the Force into them.

    Blue, red, white, and red again, all four of them glowed.

    "Show me the entry about the Chosen One."

    Four little versions of the Master appeared. They spoke in unison, sounding like some kind of multi-voiced creature.

    "There are three Chosen Ones prophecies. The first prophecy comes from the Ones.

    In the time of greatest despair, there shall come a savior, and he shall be known as the Son of the Suns, and in the ages beyond, the worlds will be remade, as in the splendor of its earliest days, and they will never again feel sorrow or harm.

    This prophecy resulted in the Father, when the Force was knocked out of balance by the rise of the Sith, pursuing Jedi to discover the Chosen One. His three recorded moments of intervention were with Xendor, Phanius and Anakin Skywalker, the latter attempt which resulted in the death of the Ones. Xendor and Phanius both became Dark Ones, the latter rechristened as Darth Ruin. Both enacted Great Schisms in the Jedi Order, plunging the galaxy into war. Anakin Skywalker refused to become a One at Mortis and due to his injuries at Mustafar at the hands of Obi-Wan Kenobi he was unable to become a Dark Man.

    The last known Holocron of Prophecy, held by the Jedi Order, referred to the following individual lines, said to be obtained by a Jedi mystic in tune with the Force."

    An image appeared of a blue cube shaped Holocron. The selfsame one Vale had. It recounted a handful of lines.

    "She who will be born to darkness will give birth to darkness.
    When the kyber that is not kyber shines forth, the time of prophecy will be at hand.
    One will ascend to the highest of the Jedi despite the foreboding of those who would serve him.
    One through sacrifice of many Jedi will the Order cleanse the sin done to the nameless.
    The danger of the past is not past, but sleeps in an egg. When the eggs crack, it will threaten the galaxy entire.
    When the Force itself sickens, past and future must split and combine.
    A Chosen One shall come, born of no father, and through him will ultimate balance in the Force be restored.
    He who learns to conquer death will through his greatest student live again.


    "There are many theories about who the words of the prophecy relate to. The most well known and traditional expression of the Chosen One is Anakin Skywalker, who became Darth Vader. However, theories abound that Revan, the Outlander, and other historic figures were Chosen Ones, let alone Anakin's descendants or antecedents. Finally, the Sith had their own prophecy about the Chosen One, known as the Sith'ari, a perfect being."

    The Master's hologram, in typical Master fashion, adopted a creeping voice before

    [​IMG]

    "Many Sith claimed this title, but Sith who most theorists suggest that Adas, Revan, Bane, Sidious, Vader or indeed Wredd may take the title. Ultimately the Sith were destroyed at the End of Time, so there is potential for the title to pass to the so-called Sith God - Typhojem himself."

    The Master shook his head. "This is what we contend with. Impossibilities, improbabilities, and Prophecy within Prophecy."

    But here is the fact of the matters. "Holocrons, show the entry about the Apocalypse, and then the End of Time."

    "The balance of the Force was restored by the death of The Apocalypse began in 40 ABY, shortly after the rise of the Sixth Dark Man, who in-fact caused the current prophecised Dark One to become the Seventh and final one. Darth Caedus foresaw the future and intervened to change it, becoming the Dark Man by murdering his aunt Mara Jade Skywalker. In doing so, he began the process to release the Old Ones from their seals. It caused an inevitable progression that saw the release of first Abeloth, then the reinvigoration of Mnngal-Mnngal, the Gods of Chaos and Rot respectively, who colluded to reassemble the Key to the Light to release Typhojem from under the Well of the Dark Side. Typhojem, save for a fraction of his essence that was destroyed with the Kaiburr Crystal, was thought dead for a hundred millennia. Typhojem's escape signifies the End of Time, and reality is subsequently warped and destroyed; the Twilight Wars begin anew, and be lost as soon as they begin."

    Names, content, concepts, future words and futures lost. The Master pressed on; he could feel it starting to happen.

    The end.

    "We need to focus on what comes after all of this. As you all asked me, last lesson, about why we have the Light - the World Between Worlds - to defend, if we are not to use it. If this is all to happen, what are we to do?" The Master was walking around them, hands in the air, wondering aloud. "It's about after. When the Twilight Wars are fought, we lose. It can't be avoided. We have things that we need to do, and to make sure that there is an after."

    There was a separate whisper from Joren's Holocron, which only he heard; and he knew that only he had heard.

    - will come to the Protectors, and fracture they will. The future will be damned by the best intentions of -

    It cut off. As if... well, as if cut out. Missing? A missing... what?

    Meanwhile Zas'tel, sitting in the shadows, would remember some words whispered, though was it a whisper to him? Or was he remembering something he was never to know? Was this a temporal anomaly, like the Master had worried about?

    Because when it happens, arrows will fly, and a Gate in the Force will be exposed where they all meet; bring the Key, or one, or three, and the way will be opened. The Door to the Light will be found for a Time, but, Well, it won’t be what is expected.

    Yet he innately knew that he only had portion of the message. This was something he was not supposed to remember yet, or perhaps even know?

    TAG: @Mitth_Fisto, @HanSolo29, @QueenSabe7, @Jerjerrod-Lennox, @Kev_Mas-Colcha

    OOC: This is the penultimate TAG before the tags which will direct one Secret Combo to be posted up a week. Good luck. I will wait for Lennox to be back from holiday, however.