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Star Wars CLOSED Aftermath and Beginnings

Discussion in 'Role Playing Forum' started by Sinrebirth , May 3, 2019.

  1. Sinrebirth

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

    Registered:
    Nov 15, 2004
    IC: Darth Insipid
    Kesh, Tahv, the Circle

    A slight smile. “Of course not, my friend.” He lightly laid his hand on the taller Sith’s shoulder. “Come, let us talk.”

    The spectral Darth Insipid moved them from the wrecked tapcafe, absently flipping a high value coin to the terrified Keshiri owner. It was more than enough to rebuild the cafe.

    A moment passed, and the streets stretched to either side of them. The distortion came to an end as they arrived in an office with a glass ceiling, bronzium statues of humanoid figures in each of the four corners.

    “I have been bestowed with knowledge thanks to the Father of Shadows. This realm is undone; most of it has fallen into Hell. The blood of the True Sith was spilled to find another way.” Insipid seemed to muse aloud.

    “Would you honour that sacrifice, and come with us?”

    TAG: @darthbernael


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  2. darthbernael

    darthbernael EU Community Mod, House was on fire, not my fault star 4 Staff Member Manager

    Registered:
    Apr 15, 2019
    IC: Darth Bernael
    Kesh, Tahv, the Circle


    Bernael smiled slightly, behind his mask when he felt his old friend's hand on his shoulder. Very few would he trust to get close enough to touch him; he could count how many on his fingers.

    He felt the wave of energy that passed over them and made time and space dilate. What probably have been a meandering walk among the peoples of this world instead was but a moment. When that moment passed he was in an office, lavishly decorated.

    He listened as Lord Insipid spoke, the words rang true. He had seen for himself, over the eons, the decline, the fall into ruin, that was spoken of. He knew that there had to be a better way, a better place. And he was being offered a chance to be a part of such.

    The thinking over whether he should accept or not took less than an eyeblink. "I have seen that which you have said with my own eyes. The sacrifice of the True Sith has been worthy and worth honoring by joining. I will not hesitate to join you, old friend."

    Tag: @Sinrebirth


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  3. Sinrebirth

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

    Registered:
    Nov 15, 2004
    Darth Insipid
    His personal chambers, Tahv, capital of Kesh

    His old Anzati apprentice spoke truth, Insipid could tell. With a nod, he turned to lead him out of the room. With a gesture, he drew a scepter to his hand from the corner of the room. It was topped by a smaller copy of one of the four statues. It had a needle-sharp end, and it was stained with blood, though quite dried out. Insipid regarded it for a moment, his head slightly tilting. He produced a comlink.

    "There is an assassin in the spaceport. She has just landed... send two Saber's to find and eliminate her."

    "Of course, Grand Lord."

    The channel cut, and Insipid smiled to Bernael. "I am sure you remember Darth Helinith. It seems she has heard my call... but we shall see how creative she is in avoiding my servants, and whether she remains worthy of the training I gave her." He thought about it. "Oh, a decade ago now she completed her training. At the end of the Shadow War, and in the Kaggath on Ziost... though of course we have met as politicians recently, I have not seen her skills in action for a few years..."

    He regarded the scepter. "But we shall not tarry, unless you have a vested interest in doing so..." His question was leading.

    TAG: @darthbernael, @darthhelinith

    OOC: I leave you to arrive on the planet, Helinith, and evade the Sith Sabers after you. This is a loose form RP, to draw you into the EUC Sith universe of storytelling. The universe we recently played in, elsewhere, is dead. Sith God. Very messy, Meet up here, so I can jump you to the next game. This is set in 155/6 ABY, 10 years after Shadow War, and 18 years after 138 ABY (which I will tag ye both in shortly).
     
  4. darthhelinith

    darthhelinith Jedi Grand Master star 6

    Registered:
    Feb 10, 2009
    IC: Darth Helinith


    SPLASH!
    She gasped and almost choked.

    "Hey Lady! Wake up!"
    Groaning and winsing, head hammering, she rolled over. The lights pierced through her eyelids, denying further sleep. Kriff.

    "Hey!" A rough gesture shook her shoulder. "Getup! This ain't a hotel!"

    Foggy vision was cleared by a slightly shaken hand as she roused herself carefully to sit up on the hard, metal bench. Her entire body rumbled complaints. Around her, other creatures in varying degrees of dress and intoxication were being shook awake by two smartly, if simply dressed guards.

    "Babysitting's over for the lot-of-yas. Get out of here, try to stay sober at least twelve hours, although I recognise for many of you, that's a hard ask."

    She shuffled blearily out into an early morning daylight just one of a huddled collective smelling of piss, alcohol and sweat. The mass fragmented beyond the chainlink security fence, some of it tottering off in little huddles of two or three, but most shuffling shame particulates crawling by their lonesome in every direction. Even in their half obliterated states, they still had places to be.

    She did not. And so she sat there in the street and waited. Ignored by others, she made herself small, head staring up at the sky.

    Sunshine and lollypops...

    The sun danced upwards, in time to the rhythm behind her temples. Shapes bustled importantly past, going about their insignificant lives. As the sun reached its mid-point and settled down for a rest, she reached into her pocket searching for something. Unable to find it, she groped around, becoming increasingly frantic. Not good.

    She stood finally, knees popping a complaint after staying still for so long, and strode towards the nearest marketplace. Purpose at last, if only for a while.

    It was at some half-stride between a lamp post and a parked speeder,, with the marketplace in sight, that she first had the creeping feeling she was being watched. She scowled to herself. This was the worst timing. Well sucks to be them, they could wait. She had important business to attend to. But even as she thought this, something was stirring and she felt her hand move to her belt, onto a metal tube. Well fine, if her brain wanted to keep an eye on things for her, who was she to complain? Her walk became more drawn out, a shuffle, hop and then a skip escaped her feet. The last one felt good, so she kept doing it. Something itched, inside the back of her brain.

    Sunshine and lollypops…

    She came to the first stall and waited for the gentleman to be finished, before showing him an image on her datapad. He shook his head and shrugged. Disappointed, she turned away and tried the stall opposite. Blank faces met her enquiries and worst still, her brain had tagged two gentlemen who seemed to be following her, cloaks about their bodies, concealing armament?

    Why had she assumed that? But even as she stopped to question her own judgement she already knew it was right. Why?

    Who cared, that could wait. She reached into a pouch and pulled out a smoke grenade, dropping it lightly to the floor. Confusion and coughing mixed with a call of 'guards!' and she slipped away, running across to a stall she hadn't interrogated, she grabbed the stall owner by their clothes and shoved the datapad in their face.

    "This! I need it! Where can I get some?"

    "I-I've seen stuff like that at Garthan's store. Second on the left past the statue of the bloodied warrior."

    " Thankies! "

    She dropped the Rodian and skipped onwards. As she turned the corner off the market into a side alley, intending to take a shortcut, she got a bolt of lightening straight to the chest.

    It stung like billy-o. But as she clutched and gasped, trying to raise a hand to disperse the power, something clicked in the back of her mind, a set of memories unpacked as the fog of drink dispersed and a power unleashed like the unfurling of a dragon's wing. She doubled up and began to laugh.

    I am very, very crazy...very sure no one could ever stop me...

    Pulled back into itself but released into surface flesh, Darth Helinith rose to her feet with a signature grin.

    "Hello boys." The hilt of her lightsaber sprung to her hand as she winked at the near security camera before addressing them again. "Yoou have no idea what you've just unleashed."

    They charged. Helinith let them come, leaping forward under their blades at the last second, allowing them to tumble forward. Meanwhile she whirled around, sending a barrage of force lightning into their backs. It did a lot more than theirs had done to her, though they both fought against it. She was a Sith Lord, once recognised in ancient halls. They were nothing but tools, messengers requesting her presence, and they burned in it.

    I am very, very crazy...unstoppable forever...

    Her barrage of force lightning at an end, she stood and waited for them to attack again.They pressed forward, one of them almost tripping in his panic and she sidestepped past, knifing him in the back with a blade she had held, concealed in her off-hand. Tut tut.
    As the body dropped to the floor, the second at least did something a little more sensible and threw his lightsaber at her. She ducked it and watched it go sailing back to his hand.

    "You know that's very rude, you should know better than to attack someone without asking. Gum?"
    This was directed at the Saber, who looked confused as she pulled out a stick of gum from a belt pouch. Happily, she folded it into her mouth and began to chew, enjoying the flavour. The Saber tried another attack and she jumped onto the nearby wall, just out of lightsaber reach.

    "You know this would be a lot more fun if it was the other way around. I'm so very good at it. I'd hunt you down nice and quick, and kill you before you knew you were in danger." Helinith tried to blow a bubble but the gum was still too hard. The Saber ran at the wall, using the force to lift himself part way up it and she leapt to the wall opposite, clinging on with the force.

    "Aww, you're so cute down there, like a little, mean beetle."
    He sent another bolt of force lightning towards her and she deflected it easily with her lightsaber blade.

    "Well now it's my turn."
    She raised a hand and pushed. He resisted but Helinith was stronger, and as his feet started slipping backwards across the dusty ground, she brought her power to bare behind her gesture, summoning further pressure. His feet slipped further and the Saber put away his lightsaber, raising both hands now to resist the power behind her force push.

    Helinith saw her opening and two things happened in quick succession. First, the pressure on the Saber was slightly released, so that he brought his own power to bare to take a step towards her, thinking that she was weakening. Second, a hidden blade, that Helinith was now manipulating with the force shot from her belt and into his windpipe. The Saber clutched at his throat and gurgled to the floor as Helinith jumped down and bowed to an imaginary audience.

    "Thank you, thank you. You've all been marvellous and as it is our last night here, another huge round of applause for my dead assistants!" She clapped them, and patted them both on the back. Thirsty work. She could do with a drink. But there were other, more important things to do.

    She skipped onwards, into the next busy street, past a statue of a Saber clutching a cracked shield and just a few steps onwards…. Yes there it was. She didn't have much time left but she at least had time to stock up.

    She dashed into the shop as the sweet smell of candied goods filled her nose. And there they were.

    A rolls and rolls of fruit twists, deliciously stacked, delicately wrapped in their multicoloured papers. She ran a hand across the display lovingly and purred.

    "Which one of you is going to come home with me?"

    I just want to eat, how tasty it is.

    It was all part of the game. Make sure Insipid doesn't take things to seriously. And if she could ever get him to laugh… why that would be even better.


    Tag: @Sinrebirth
     
  5. darthbernael

    darthbernael EU Community Mod, House was on fire, not my fault star 4 Staff Member Manager

    Registered:
    Apr 15, 2019
    Bernael stood at the gesture from Lord Insipid. As the scepter flew across the room he finally recognised the scent that had been buried in the air of the room, a dry copper-iron scent. It was easy to recognise why seeing the dried blood on the point of the scepter.


    He listened as the message was sent on the com and as he heard the reason behind it. 'The Sabers seem to be more than willing to lose members, if I remember Darth Helenith well.' he thought.


    Lord Insipid turned back to him and Bernael heard him say "But we shall not tarry, unless you have a vested interest in doing so..." The hesitation, giving pause, informed him of the leading nature of the statement.


    Before he responded, Bernael reached into his cloak, drawing forth a small box made of Beskar, covered in runes of concealment. Upon opening it one could see the interior had space enough for one specific, small item. He placed it on the desk and pulled back the hood of his cloak, undoing the hair clasp, cradling it as he slipped it inside the box, closing the lid, and slipped the box back into its hiding place in his cloak.


    Being sure the gesture was not lost on his old friend, he spoke, "This moment, for all my age, reminds me of an inscription I found carved into the door to the inner chamber of an ancient temple, related to the Celestials. -Now this is not the end. It is not even the beginning of the end. But it is, perhaps, the end of the beginning.-"


    He stepped closer to Lord Insipid to follow him into whatever the future held here.


    Tag: @Sinrebirth

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  6. Sinrebirth

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

    Registered:
    Nov 15, 2004
    Darth Insipid
    Chambers, Tahv

    The sceptre seemed unwilling to cooperate. It was hinting at something, and Insipid frowned in spite of himself. For twenty-five millennia this had percolated in the hands of the Galactic Senate, as a promise, though what that accord was nobody could have said nowadays. Something to do with the Sages, but they had been gone for unspecified millennia before even the Republic was founded. Insipid was not the owner of this tool. Clearly it belonged to someone else. He eyed the small metal totem atop the staff. What did Sistros require of him first?

    The Sith Lord paused, debating what to add, or not to add, as he sensed Helinith jauntily causing mayhem within the spaceport. "It may be prudent to hunt down my former apprentice before we leave." He eyed Bernael pointedly. The Force roiled, and a connection between the two of them - murderously joyful assassin, and intensely stoic Anzati - was formed.

    "Go, my friend. I would be loath to leave her here, alone, and I shall need to show you the way." A window opened to the left of them, looking over the city and the spaceport generally. Insipid nodded. "I shall be along shortly." The staff resonated shortly, and Insipid knew that he had done what was required of him. His smile grew mildly carnivorous. "Good luck. She was once a Dark Lord. You'll have to be careful of her."

    "She might remember you as the apprentice of a former foe, after all."

    TAG: @darthhelinith, @darthbernael
     
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  7. darthbernael

    darthbernael EU Community Mod, House was on fire, not my fault star 4 Staff Member Manager

    Registered:
    Apr 15, 2019
    Bernael felt as the connection between himself and Darth Helenith was established. He could feel her insanity among other things, including her location. He flew threw the window, disappearing from sight as he did so, no need to have the Sabers look for him even more.


    As he raced over the rooftops toward the spaceport, he could feel that Darth Helenith knew he was coming, that she remembered him, that their reunion may contain pyrotechnics. A half-smile crossed his face. ‘This will be interesting’ he thought.


    Dropping down to the street, he flowed from shadow to shadow, moving ever closer to the spaceport. He slowed as he passed an alley, examining it, reading the battle that took place. ‘She hasn’t lost her touch.’ The two dead Sabers had been taken out easily but he knew others would be around, if he knew Lord Insipid.


    Continuing onward, he passed the statue of the warrior. And then there was a shop in front of him. He felt the pulse of Darth Helenith’s presence inside. Slowing, as he came to the door, he thought of times past. Honestly, they had moved in quite different circles in times past, she a Dark Lord, he an apprentice so he knew caution was appropriate.


    Sliding into a shadow by the doorway, he faded back into view. Scanning the street, he did not immediately sense any lurking presences waiting for him or her, but that did not count out that there were any closing in. Opening the door, he quietly entered, letting the door silently swing shut behind him. As he looked around the shop, ‘A sweet shop, seriously?’ Bernael thought. “Darth Helenith, Lord Insipid sent me to accompany you to him.” he said, preparing himself should she be displeased by the intrusion.

    Tag: @darthhelenith, @Sinrebirth
     
  8. darthhelinith

    darthhelinith Jedi Grand Master star 6

    Registered:
    Feb 10, 2009
    IC: Darth Helinith
    Location: Candy Emporium

    The shop owner, a rather pale looking human, swallowed at Bernael's appearance and pointed a finger upwards.
    "She said she was waiting to meet with someone. She's paid her way, so I'd appreciate it if you convinced her to leave- she's been scaring away my other customers."

    Darth Helinith sat on the ceiling, upside down, looking down at Bernael. Around her head, various packets of candy were floating.
    Her eyes narrowed, and her body tensed into a crouch.
    "You. Give me one really good reason to not try to kill you right now."

    Tags: @darthbernael @Sinrebirth
     
  9. darthbernael

    darthbernael EU Community Mod, House was on fire, not my fault star 4 Staff Member Manager

    Registered:
    Apr 15, 2019
    IC: Darth Bernael

    Location: Candy Emporium


    Looking from the trembling shopkeeper up to Darth Helenith crouched like a spider on the ceiling, candy orbiting her, Bernael listened as she, unsurprisingly, threatened his existence. A short, wry shake of his head followed.


    "I can give you two. One, despite previous affiliations, I doubt our former Master…" he projected an image of Lord Insipid "would appreciate the attempt before I guided you to him to hear his words. And two, despite being Sith, I doubt this city needs more destruction wrought on it by either of us, with us going force to force and blade to blade."


    His hands stayed away from either his sabers or his kukri as he spoke, not that the draw would have taken more than an eyeblink, but to show he was attempting good faith.


    "It would be better if you stop terrifying the normals and, at least, attempt civilised conversation while we head to Lord Insipid and you may find things are and have been quite different from your perception of them."


    His eyes had blackened as he spoke, the only sign he was prepared to meet deadly force with the like. Pausing, he waited while Darth Helenith digested his words and decided her course of action.

    Tags: @darthhelinith, @Sinrebirth

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  10. darthhelinith

    darthhelinith Jedi Grand Master star 6

    Registered:
    Feb 10, 2009
    IC: Helinith

    She glared at him and then pulled out a datapad, scrolling slowly through the list that she'd written ten minutes prior to his arrival titled 'Reasons to trust Bernael'.
    Her eyes widened in surprise and the sweets orbiting around her fell from her control to the floor. Yes, it was on there.

    "Fair enough. Although it goes without saying that I have not wavered the right to change my mind at any time."
    Her entire body relaxing, she jumped down, waved happily at the shop keeper and bounced out into the street with one fluid movement, assuming the Anzati was following her.
    Nose wrinkling, she sniffed the air. Huh, something smelled like a dumpster. She pulled her cloak round her and under the guise of readjusting it, took a sniff. Her face wrinkled in disgust: she couldn't let Insipid smell her in this state, her recent adventures had taken their toll. Maybe if she stood really, really still nobody would be any the wiser.
    ...no that was ridiculous, not to mention impractical.

    Well if anyone asked her anything about it, she would deny everything and stand in a bucket of water.
    "Say," here she turned to her recently acquired pard, "I know that we've got to get going and all, and I'm sure there's much to talk about but you wouldn't happen to know where the nearest body of water is, would you? It's been a long time since I admired one."

    Tags: @darthbernael @Sinrebirth
     
    Last edited: Jun 8, 2019
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  11. darthbernael

    darthbernael EU Community Mod, House was on fire, not my fault star 4 Staff Member Manager

    Registered:
    Apr 15, 2019
    Bernael's eyes shifted back to silver as Darth Helenith passed him, exiting the shop. Nodding to the shopkeeper, he surreptitiously slipped a pair of nose filters from the depths of his robes, fitted them while her back was turned, and followed her from the shop. He heard the sigh of relief from inside as the door dilated shut.


    Moving to be in her line of sight, and stand upwind, he considered the question. As with her, he had recently arrived on Kesh, but remembered from his survey of the planet and the cities that there may be something that would, potentially, qualify as something she could use.


    "Follow me, there may be something that suits your desire for admiration."


    He led her on a twisting, semi deviating from their destination path, journey. Along the way they were both silent, he considering his new companion, she her thoughts seemingly shielded.


    He heard the water flowing as they approached, and, with a predators smile hidden behind his mask, Bernael led her into a plaza near the center of the city. There, placed directly in the middle, was a large fountain. "You desired water to admire, I deliver."

    Tags: @darthhelinith, @Sinrebirth
     
    Last edited: Jun 8, 2019
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  12. darthhelinith

    darthhelinith Jedi Grand Master star 6

    Registered:
    Feb 10, 2009
    IC: Darth Helinith
    A fountain

    "YES!"
    No sooner had the words left his mouth, Helinith was in the air, launching herself away from him and into the bottom-most basin of the glass fountain.
    SPLASH!

    For the second time that day, she was covered in water, but this time it was deep enough to swim in, far preferable.
    Ahhhhhh! I feel so alive!
    She dived under the surface and stretched out, letting it wash away all the grime.
    Hmm. I hope I'm not poisoning the water
    She rose up to the surface and began to float on top of it, blowing a bubble of gum as she did so and watching the water cascading down from the top basin. Her hair began to form a small brown halo around her head.
    The glass of the fountain shimmered as light caught in the flow of water, casting little shimmering rainbows. Helinith sighed.

    Head clear, she could consider more important things. Like, what was her former master doing hanging around with this guy? Why set up a bond? And what was going to happen now? The bubble of gum popped and she huffed to herself.

    "You should come in Bernael, the water is lovely! Nice and cool."
    She'd rather he didn't join her but it seemed polite to ask.

    Tag: @darthbernael @Sinrebirth
     
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  13. darthbernael

    darthbernael EU Community Mod, House was on fire, not my fault star 4 Staff Member Manager

    Registered:
    Apr 15, 2019
    As Darth Helenith launched herself into the air, Bernael reached out and created a bubble around the plaza whereby anyone who was in the plaza or entered it would ignore the splashing Sith Lady as she froliced in the fountain. As the water took on a muddied hue, the scent that had lingered began to vanish.


    He heard her invitation, and the reluctance in it, “I prefer my cleaning rituals to be a little more private, but thank you for the invitation.” Through the bond, he could feel the edges of the questions that were percolating her mind. It would be rude to presume to just answer them without her asking. There was no need to display that his natural mental abilities could utilise the bond as well.


    He removed the nose filters as he put his back to a shaded wall, giving Darth Helenith the time, and space, to both get clean and work through whatever was going through her mind. The plaza, beside the fact that everyone was ignoring her in the fountain, was bustling with people. He watched with slitted eyes, his mind tracking all as it also went through what he knew of the route back to Lord Insipid. Knowing his old Master, and what had already happened since he had come here, he had no doubt this would not be a simple stroll and conversation as they returned to the Lord.

    Tag: @darthhelinith @Sinrebirth
     
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  14. Sinrebirth

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

    Registered:
    Nov 15, 2004
    IC: Darth Insipid
    Thinking aloud

    The sceptre wasn’t done, it seemed. It was holding him. Insipid could have collected Helinith himself, but he needed to have a chat with the staff and Bernael was perceptive. He likely would have reasoned Insipid was up to something full stop - as Insipid always was.

    Fine.

    Another stray for the cause.

    Insipid focused his energies upwards, to the ship quietly hiding in orbit. A Neti was there, Sith, from many millennia ago, having been awoken by the Old Empire not long after the Battle of Yavin. His presence was shielded, of course. He had been lightly present in the galaxy at large, last seen a good year ago, before the Feast, before the collapse of the Great Sith Empire. Renn.

    You can come down, now.

    Insipid did not so much call as connect his mind to the location of the ship, and remotely vibrate the speakers in the cockpit. He twisted his essence. Come now.

    And then he connected Renn to Bernael and to Helinith. Because they would need that.

    To come across.

    Insipid eyed the staff. It was expectant.

    “I see.”

    TAG: @darthbernael (twice), @darthhelinith


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  15. darthbernael

    darthbernael EU Community Mod, House was on fire, not my fault star 4 Staff Member Manager

    Registered:
    Apr 15, 2019
    IC: Renn Turon
    Location:In orbit/spaceport/fountain

    Studying the world below, deciding a course of action, whether he should tempt fate and surprise his old companion Bernael, Renn was startled out of his seat by the speakers rattling a message You can come down, now. Come now.

    "By the gods!" his yell echoed around the otherwise empty cockpit as he regained his focus. As he calmed, somewhat, he could suddenly feel Bernael's presence in his mind, and, intriguingly, another female presence similar in outlook to him.

    Setting the landing coordinates, Renn retreated to his cargo hold to retrieve his equipment belt as the ship, seemingly pre-cleared to land, barreled through the atmosphere to land at the spaceport. Returning to the cockpit, he let a sack thump to the floor as he watched the landing procedure.

    "Hmmm, there's the vampire's Fury, and I'm guessing that female I'm sensing has one of the other two ships parked nearby. This should be fun!"

    Not seconds after the skids touched the ramp and the engines shut down Renn unfolded down the ramp, the bag slung over one shoulder. As he stepped down the now harried Customs Officer approached head down. "Renn Turon I presume. Yet another, holy gods you're tall! Umm, *cough cough" yet another Sith I see by the paperwork, already cleared and welcome to continue your business in the city."

    Ignoring the functionary for a moment, Renn stretched, enjoying being able to stand at his usual height instead of cramped over in the ship, drinking in the sunlight, before looking down “Thank you, I’ll be on my way.” Without another word he strode off, leaving the confused official standing near his ship.

    As with most spaceports, Renn was glad this one was designed to accommodate beings of various heights as he weaved through the crowds that tended to stop and stare as he passed. ‘I guess, as with other worlds, seeing a Neti is unusual here, guess unless I look normal I will continue to get stared at. Ah well, more enjoyable this way.’

    He passed through the entrance, and with his stride length, he quickly moved through the city. On his way, following the feeling of Bernael and the other, he passed a ruined cafe. One being still stood among the ruins as he passed, “Damn, the vampire has been busy already, maybe I should have told him I was following him, I want to play too.” He realized he was speaking aloud when gawking onlookers to the devastation spun around and squawked at him passing by.

    Moving further into the city, he realized the streets were designed in such a way that one must keep their wits up or adversaries could appear from anywhere. There were dark patches from overhangs, alleys, darkened doorways leading to shops, and various nooks and crannies. One such alley he passed carried the feeling of Force energies having been released recently. Looking down the alley he saw two crumpled forms, blood pooling around them. ‘Bernael again? Busier than I thought.’

    Passing a statue, he saw a shopkeeper exit his establishment, look up and up at him, shriek, race back into his shop, slam and lock his door. ‘Yeah, the vampire has certainly been this way.’ He laughed and continued his stroll through the city, learning the feel of the city, the energies swirling around it, the bond ebbing and waning as he took various turns at intersections.

    He felt a pull toward the center of town, telling him the two he was bonded to were in that direction. Shifting the bag from one shoulder to the other he laughed again, touched his belt for a moment, and walked in that direction. As he walked, he could feel the sense of their presences growing stronger and stronger. Likewise, he could feel the rise of Force energy ahead, someone was expending power for some reason. ‘Yeah, the vampire has to be there.”

    Soon enough he heard the gurgling of a fountain, and as he passed an unseen barrier, shaking off the effects as he passed, he heard silvery, feminine laughter and splashing. Looking around he saw that he had entered a large plaza with a beautiful fountain in the center. Surprisingly, but perhaps that was the energy he had passed through, no one else seemed to notice the fully dressed woman playing in the fountain.

    Walking up to it, he dropped the bag, sat on the edge hearing the glass creak as he did. “Little, pretty, craziness are you why it felt right to bring some candy? And where the kark is the vampire?”

    Tags; @darthhelinith @Sinrebirth @darthbernael
     
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  16. darthhelinith

    darthhelinith Jedi Grand Master star 6

    Registered:
    Feb 10, 2009
    IC: Darth Helinith
    Location: fountain, spluttering

    Helinith appreciated Bernael's refusal and continued to float on the surface of the water a while more whilst she continued to ruminate and chew on her gum. She was pulled out of her thoughts by a shadow cast over her face.

    “Little, pretty, craziness are you why it felt right to bring some candy? And where the kark is the vampire?”

    She squeaked in surprise, lost her focus and took a big mouthful of water that left her coughing and sputtering for air. A substantial amount of splashing followed as she worked towards raising her head above water again.
    "Talking!… Tree!!" She just about manage to choke out between gasps. She blushed, realising that probably wasn't the nicest thing to say, after he'd been so nice to her. There were a few more coughs, during which she covered her face to be polite and used as an opportunity to stare at him over her cloak while she pointed in Bernael's general direction. She'd heard of Neti but she'd never seen one, let alone met one before.

    TAG: @darthbernael @Sinrebirth

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  17. darthbernael

    darthbernael EU Community Mod, House was on fire, not my fault star 4 Staff Member Manager

    Registered:
    Apr 15, 2019
    IC: Renn Turon
    Location: City Center plaza/fountain

    Renn's head flew back and a short series of barking laughs could be heard ringing around the plaza as the woman in the fountain recovered. Tilting his head forward, with a grin, he saw her pointing, looked over and saw a form leaning in the shadows 'Typical vampire' he thought, before turning back and finding a pair of eyes staring at him over the hem of a cloak.

    'Hmmm, Bernael can wait.'

    He knew Bernael had to be the one holding the dome of energy over the plaza, to keep people from gawking at the fountain. Renn likewise knew that his presence had just added to Bernael's workload of keeping people ignorant of the byplay, which amused him greatly.

    "The vampire I know, from many times past. But a Sith who plays in fountains and introduces herself so uniquely, she I've never met." He extended one large, greenish brown hand to assist her out if needed as he looked back into her eyes with a mischievous glint in his yellow-green ones.

    "The talking tree is Renn, Renn Turon. And who might the gum chewing sweetie of a Sith in the water be?"

    Tags: @darthhelinith @Sinrebirth
     
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  18. darthhelinith

    darthhelinith Jedi Grand Master star 6

    Registered:
    Feb 10, 2009
    IC: Darth Helinith
    Location: the glass fountain

    The Neti glanced in the direction of Bernael but seemed more interested in her, which was a shame, as Helinith found it very difficult to regain her composure while he was looking at her.

    "The vampire I know, from many times past. But a Sith who plays in fountains and introduces herself so uniquely, she I've never met. The talking tree is Renn, Renn Turon. And who might the gum chewing sweetie of a Sith in the water be?"
    Helinith returned his grin with one of her own.
    "Darth Helinith, ex imperial assassin, former aprentice and current nuisance of Lord Insipid. And I once ran of chain of ice cream parlors on Tatooine."

    She took the offer of his hand with her significantly smaller one, climbing out of the fountain with slightly more dignity and grace than a drowned rat.

    Back on solid ground, she proceeded to empty the water from her boots onto the ground and wrang out her cloak.

    With a few tongue sweeps, she found that she seemed to have swallowed her gum in the prior coughing fit. Unperturbed, she pulled out a roll of fruit twists and pulled out a pastel to offer the Neti. Unfortunately her favourite was on top, so she took that one out and began sucking on it, before offering the next one to him instead.

    "It's not often I meet a Sith who already has a sense of humour. I usually consider it my job to help them to find it."

    Tag: @darthbernael @Sinrebirth

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  19. darthbernael

    darthbernael EU Community Mod, House was on fire, not my fault star 4 Staff Member Manager

    Registered:
    Apr 15, 2019
    OOC: This contains replies for both Renn and Bernael. Separate replies, but both included.

    IC:Renn Turon
    Location: City center fountain

    Renn could feel the awkwardness radiating from her of him focusing on this Sith rather than moving to his old companion.

    "Darth Helinith, ex imperial assassin, former apprentice and current nuisance of Lord Insipid. And I once ran of chain of ice cream parlors on Tatooine."

    Another bark of laughter at her introduction, quite refreshing when dealing with the, usually, somber Sith. He felt the warmth of her small hand as it was placed in his. Assisting as she clambered out of the fountain, he stayed seated so as to keep his head more on level with hers.

    Not desiring to be rude, she could and probably would learn the dietary habits of Neti soon enough, he took the offered candy, letting it dissolve slowly in his mouth, absorbing what minimal nutrients it contained.

    "It's not often I meet a Sith who already has a sense of humour. I usually consider it my job to help them to find it." Renn again laughed at her words, a soft chuckle this time.

    Nodding backward in the direction of Bernael, "Here you have the two extremes a very long life can create, old sourpuss back there and me. And I'd rather enjoy life, laugh at and with it, than withdraw."

    Renn felt like he was going to have fun with this petite Sith, that they could cause such enjoyable havoc together. Standing, he stretched for a moment, a glint in his eye and a broad smile as he saw her eyes widen a bit at his height.

    "What say we grab the vam…. Where the kark did he go now!"

    Tags: @darthhelinith @Sinrebirth

    *****************************************************


    IC: Darth Bernael
    Location: City Center plaza

    Leaning against the wall, Bernael suppressed a grimace as he felt a third presence join the bond. 'How did that Neti find me? And now I must puzzle out why Lord Insipid believes him necessary to this endeavor.'

    He watched the plaza, idly noting the enjoyment Helenith had found in the fountain. Keeping his vigilance up he felt Renn's presence getting stronger. With a sigh he wove more power into the dome of Force over the plaza he added muting noticing Renn to its effects.

    And then the giant Sith entered the plaza, shook his head as if trying to make insects leave him be, look around, and head to the fountain. Bernael had been muting his own presence in the Force for a time. He knew how sensitive the Neti were in the Force, not to mention that anyone with even minimal Force ability would be slightly queasy at the taste of his presence.

    He head swung back quickly as he heard uncoordinated splashing, followed by Renn's laughter. His eyes lit upon the two there as he saw her pointing in his general direction, Renn's eyes picking him out in the shadows.

    Renn ignored him to speak to Helenith, which mattered little to Bernael, 'Let them enjoy a moment of levity.' His hearing could follow their exchange.

    His eyes took on a glint behind the mask for a moment. When the other two were engaged, he camouflaged himself, leaving a seemingly solid Force echo of himself where he had stood.

    Silently moving across the plaza, he positioned himself behind Renn as the Neti rose to his feet, dropping the physical camouflage and the power maintaining the Force echo as he reappeared.

    "What say we grab the vam…. Where the kark did he go now!" he heard from Renn, seeing the large head whip back and forth, searching for him.

    "Teaching someone humor, Helenith, requires that the one being taught has a sense of humor. I see that Lord Insipid, or whatever plan is driving him, has seen fit to saddle me with two jokers to deliver to him." Bernael stated as he slipped around Renn, a crease of a smile on his face at the startled expressions.

    "Now let us dry you off so that I can release the distraction field and we can be on our way." Bernael's eyes darkened and swirling currents of warm, dry air began swirling around Helenith.

    Tags: @darthhelinith @Sinrebirth
     
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  20. darthhelinith

    darthhelinith Jedi Grand Master star 6

    Registered:
    Feb 10, 2009
    IC: Darth Helinith
    Location: Between a Neti and a large fountain

    "Here you have the two extremes a very long life can create, old sourpuss back there and me. And I'd rather enjoy life, laugh at and with it, than withdraw."
    Helinith nodded enthusiastically.
    "Me too! There's too much fun to be had."
    "What say we grab the vam…. Where the kark did he go now!"
    Helinith looked over to where Bernael had been standing, but he had disappeared.
    Trap? Her hand moved to her belt.
    "Teaching someone humor, Helenith, requires that the one being taught has a sense of humor. I see that Lord Insipid, or whatever plan is driving him, has seen fit to saddle me with two jokers to deliver to him." Bernael suddenly appeared next to Renn and Helinith jumped, although she recovered quickly.
    "Now let us dry you off so that I can release the distraction field and we can be on our way."
    Helinith stood obediently and allowed herself to be heated. Steam began to rise off her clothes in a fine mist- it was a pleasant sensation. "Insipid has a sense of humour, it's just more refined and he's less likely to show that he's amused." aka never- Helinith added to herself. "See, you being stuck with us, that's Insipid's sense of humour."
    She chuckled but her laugh didn't quite meet her eyes.
    "Let's go."
    She had delayed as long as she could, however the inevitable was still coming.
    Having no idea where Insipid currently was, she began walking towards the presence that'd drawn her here to the planet several days ago, a pit of dread stirring in her stomach.

    Tag: @darthbernael @Sinrebirth
     
  21. darthbernael

    darthbernael EU Community Mod, House was on fire, not my fault star 4 Staff Member Manager

    Registered:
    Apr 15, 2019
    OOC: It was easiest to post a dual response from Bernael and Renn so this is them both.

    IC: Darth Bernael/Renn
    Location: Central Plaza

    As Helenith turned to walk off, Bernael let the drying wind die down. His eyes returning to their normal silver, he likewise dropped the dome of distraction once they were moving. "Yes, that is exactly his sense of humor."

    Moving around her, Bernael took the lead. “We can all feel Lord Insipid, especially with this bond, but the way back isn’t as simple as heading directly in his direction. As you saw, with those two who attacked you in the alley, the Sabers seem to have been given orders, as an organisation, to harry us at every opportunity.”

    Headed in a diagonal from the direction the pull toward Lord Insipid was giving, Bernael headed for another exit from the plaza, scanning the crowds and letting his sense pulse ahead, feeling for anyone waiting or searching for them. “Our former master seems to want to see how we all work, as a group, with such difference of character between myself and you both, as we work to get to him."

    As he walked Bernael pondered all that had occurred since he came to this world. Most of it made a certain kind of sense, save one thing, Renn. Looking back at Renn, “Her I expected, you however, why are you here? What has brought you to this world?” Bernael’s gaze was hard as he asked Renn, remembering times past, times he had to find unique answers to situations that the Neti’s humor had added to his missions.

    Renn looked back at Bernael, laughing, “Vampire, I know your ship. I was bored and saw you headed somewhere so I followed, certain that, as usual, interesting things would be happening around you, many chances to really live would take place with you. And then my ship, obviously now, your old master, told me to come find you.”

    He heard a sigh from Bernael in response as the other turned forward again, knowing the Anzat didn’t share his humor. Looking over at Helenith, he could feel the anxiety in her. He did not know the one they were headed to see, as the other two did, but he was certain, no matter the reason, there would be a way to see it through, and enjoy all of it.

    He stretched out an arm, as Helenith’s gaze passed over him, not entirely seeing him. Tapping her shoulder, he smiled then shifted. Now walking next to her was a taller, near doppelganger of Bernael. However, the featureless mask wasn’t quite so, it kept shifting from one humorous expression to another. Looking down momentarily, he reached into the sack he had brought, eyes lighting up behind the faux mask, and pulled out more of the same candy she had earlier offered him and offered her the roll.

    “I can feel the dread, the uncertainty, the anxiety you are feeling, little craziness. It doesn’t become you. I know you don’t necessarily have the vampire’s healing, or mine, but I’m certain between the three of us we’ll make it through whatever is to come. And get many laughs at Bernael’s expense in the process.”

    He shifted back, the humorous moment over, feeling the slight uncertainty where it came to him appearing as Bernael. “So what shall we talk about, while we keep an eye out for these baddies Bernael says he and you have run into? I’d ask the vampire but would be bored very quickly.”

    Tags: @darthhelinith @Sinrebirth
     
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  22. darthhelinith

    darthhelinith Jedi Grand Master star 6

    Registered:
    Feb 10, 2009
    Darth Helinith
    Location: en route

    Bernael said something about Sabers and a test, Helinith only caught some of it, so caught up as she was in her own thoughts.

    She was in the the middle of chewing her lip when Renn tapped her on the shoulder and turned into a much larger version of Bernael, pulling a face that made her snort- she had to bite her fist to stop herself laughing out loud. He then pulled out another roll of sweets, much to her surprise.
    “I can feel the dread, the uncertainty, the anxiety you are feeling, little craziness. It doesn’t become you. I know you don’t necessarily have the vampire’s healing, or mine, but I’m certain between the three of us we’ll make it through whatever is to come. And get many laughs at Bernael’s expense in the process.”

    Helinith smiled weakly.
    'It's not that. It's what comes before." She sighed and shook her head. It was a stupid personal thing, and it didn't concern someone she'd just met.

    Truth was, she was scared.
    Helinith had known from the moment she arrived on the planet that something was different. Her former master felt strange in the force. When they had trained, when they had worked together, Insipid's presence had been like a living sea serpent, cutting through opposition like a ship through water, coils slowly constricting his enemies with his calculated political moves. Now it felt like the same creature had been frozen in bronze and stuck on a rock in the middle of the sea, as indestructible and immovable as an anchor.
    And she was scared. Scared of what she would find, scared of what it would mean, scared of the implications. Scared that she might have to say something that she wasn't ready to say.

    So rather than seeking Insipid out as soon as she'd arrived, she'd avoided the situation entirely the only way she knew how, by drinking herself blind.
    It hadn't helped, it never did, but it had been a good distraction.

    “So what shall we talk about, while we keep an eye out for these baddies Bernael says he and you have run into? I’d ask the vampire but would be bored very quickly.”
    Helinith looked thoughtful.
    "Have you had to say goodbye to someone before Renn? What's the best way to go about it?"

    TAGS: @Sinrebirth @darthbernael
     
    Last edited: Jun 14, 2019
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  23. Sinrebirth

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

    Registered:
    Nov 15, 2004
    IC: Darth Insipid
    Drifting

    The Grand High Lord of Kesh, Dark Lord of the Sith, God-Emperor and Night Herald found himself drifting towards the Sith Temple. Transport was arranged for him and the other three, though they would be moved as a trio with a suitably commanding pulse from Insipid, and he would meet them at the abandoned place. It was great, and cavernous, as befitting the name of Great Hall.

    The Keshiri servants who were sent to collect the three of them apologetically plied Helinith into the jointly shared shuttle with drink, sweets and the promise that the Grand Lord would make everything right.

    Insipid had frowned relentlessly as he was led by the staff, ignoring the others as they dealt with each other. The Force bond roped between them was designed to enable them to bond in-front of what was to come. After all, Insipid could hardly leave this world. So, they would need to rely on each other in his absence. The Keshiri were used to nonhumans now, but imagine if they had turned up in ancient Kesh. A human, Anzati and a Neti. How amusing.

    His shuttle set down and he stood in the hallway as the shuttle dropped the three of them behind him. Insipid went to speak, when the figure atop the staff resonated. Insipid bared his teeth. "My friends, new and old, come, come." He gestured them to follow them to an alcove to the edge of the Hall. He fluttered a hand and drew an ancient-dusty curtain across them, but made sure that they could see the Hall. Insipid winked at Helinith, trying to shake her from her funk. “It has been a while that we've gotten into trouble together, no?"

    "But more seriously," Insipid said, looking back into room. "If you have ever gone flow-walking into the past, you will know that you cannot change the flow of the Force. Its impossible. But you can change the memories of those who were here. So while whomever is here will probably be dead, and won’t remember us gallivanting... let's not risk it. The sceptre, seemingly, wants to show us something."

    Helinith would recognise the staff of office of a certain Sith faction - the one relic of Insipid’s time there that he retained. Thus the drier blood of so many upon its blade-like end. Bernael and Renn might not note the significance of the same. Anyone else, perhaps more versed with Old Republic history, would recognise it as something else much, much, much, differently.

    He sounded somewhat grim. "So show us it will."

    The great Hall became a swirl of colours, and Insipid swore.

    He knew when they were, and he had to crush his fear into a small, small, terrified part of his soul. Helinith would sense it. Bernael might. Renn wouldn't. He severed their bond lest Helinith tell them all inadvertently.

    ---
    Forty years after the Battle of Endor

    The masquerade would be the final event of the busy day. The next day, Abeloth and the Circle would have a formal meeting in the Circle Chambers, where the finer points of their alliance would be negotiated. Tonight, however, was ostensibly for enjoyment, entertainment, playful deception, and frivolity; in reality for continued observation, assessment, duplicity, and plotting.

    In other words, it was a quintessentially Sith-like event.

    It would be held in the great hall of the Sith Temple. As was most of the Temple, it was cavernous and dark. But unlike the majority of the spaces frequented by the students, which tended to be austere and forbidding, this hall, which saw large gatherings of a usually celebratory or otherwise pleasant nature - graduations and theatrical productions such as tonight's - was somewhat more congenial. The walls were still looming rock, carved from the mountain itself, but there were portraits of prominent former students on the walls, marble mosaics inlaid in the floor, and illumination that was more festive than practical.

    The guests were powerful Sith, human and Keshiri, male and female, all at the top of their fields. They were present because Grand Lord Vol wished to either reward them or observe them. The Lost Tribe generally eschewed droids, even though many had come their way in the last few years, regarding their sills and talents as inferior to those of living beings. Most droids had been dismantled, their parts and pieces utilised to improve the weapons and vessels that were deemed so important in the larger picture of Sith conquest. Therefore, human and Keshiri servants, clad in masks but not in costumes, wandered the floor offering beverages and tidbits.

    Those Sith who had received an invitation to what would perhaps be the most coveted occasion for years to come had gone all-out with their costumes, spending small fortunes and making tailors and artisans work without cease for the last three days. The result was an overabundance of finery, with so much jewellery, rare metals, and ornate glass masks on display that the eye grew tired of observing.

    Lord Vol had anticipated as much. He wished his own choice of costume to send a message: one clear, not blatant. He would not make an appearance until his oh-so-honoured guest did. A full hour after the masquerade began, Sith Saber Gavar Khai was announced. He did not bring his wife; she had not been invited. From a private room, Lord Vol watched as Khai entered the room.

    “Well, well,” he said. “I see that Khai remembers his mythology.”

    Gavar Khai stood in black from head to toe; not unusual for one who always preferred traditional Sith robes. But this time he wore a cloak of black feathers, each one sporting a jewel, and his mask was sharp beak.

    “The Dark Tuash of Alanciar,” said High Lord Ivaar Workan, standing beside Vol. “An interesting choice.”

    “The question is, is the Harbinger’s news for us, or Abeloth?” Mused Vol.

    There were two Tuash’aa of Alanciar in Keshiri folklore, a Dark One and a Bright One. The Tuash’aa were giant birds, believed to bring messages about the coming of the Destructors. The Bright Tuash brought word that the Destructors had either been defeated, or else had chosen not to trouble a world. The Dark Tuash -

    “I imagine,” drawled Workan, “we will find out. And look, his lovely lady is not far behind him.”

    Workan did not refer to Lakha. He referred to Abeloth. Vol sighed. “She does like to make an entrance,” Vol said, not without a trace of admiration.

    Abeloth did not simply make an entrance. She made the perfect entrance. The doors were flung open, and wind rushed in, quite literally ruffling Khai’s cape feathers and disturbing the costumes of several other Sith in the immediate vicinity. The “wind” took on form and colour, swirling until it took the shape of a woman seemingly made of ice and air, glittering and beautiful, larger than an ordinary human female, regal and commanding. Her hair was good, her gown silver, her mask the purest, glistening, icy white.

    She hovered for a minute, acknowledging the applause, and floated gently as a feather to the stone floor.

    “Fallanassi illusion,” Vol said at once.

    “She learns,” Ivaar Workan replied I’m his pleasant tone. His face was calm, benevolent appearing as the two Sith watched Abeloth.

    “She does. But then, so do I. Come,” he said, rising. “Let us go greet our honoured guest.”

    And so it was, when the hour came to welcome Abeloth to the masquerade, Lord Darish Vol, leader of the Lost Tribe of Sith, greeting Abeloth in long, plain brown and tan robes, with only a black mask imperfectly hiding his recognisable features.

    The crowd parted, murmuring uncertainly at first as they recognised his ensemble, then breaking into appreciative laughter and applause that swelled until the entire room was cheering. Vol turned, waving and smiling slightly, giving them a bow.

    “Lord Vol,” said Abeloth, her voice artificially warm. “What an amusing costume... though no one would ever mistake you for a Jedi.”

    Nor would anyone mistake you for an ally, Vol thought, but he kept his musings flawlessly concealed. He smiled amiably, quirked a finger, and a goblet if something purple and rich-smelling floated into his hand.

    “I trust you find it as amusing as I do. When you reach my age, amusement is a precious and rare thing. Saber Khai. A pleasure to see you. An interesting choice of costume.”

    “The Dark Tuash to Alanciar was my daughter’s favourite story of the Return,” Khai said.

    “You dress to honour her.” Another flick of the finger, and goblets floated to both Abeloth and Khai. “I take it, then, that she is performing well for us still.”

    “So well that for a short time, even I was uncertain as to which side she was on.” Truth; Vol could sense that much. But then, those of the Khai line had always been masters of hiding their feelings.

    “No longer, though?” Vol sipped the tangy beverage, quirking a white eyebrow. “Even though she murdered High Lord Taalon?”

    The room seemed to become very still. Khai smiled thinly. “She did what she thought best for the Tribe,” Khai said. “Sarusu Taalon was... rapidly becoming an unfit leader. He would soon have been of no use to anyone.”

    Abeloth sighed. “Such a pity.”

    “We have dissolved our alliance with the Jedi-“ Khai said the word as if it left a bad taste in his mouth- “and have allied with a far superior being. Vestara will bring us the Skywalkers, with the young one eating out of her hand.”

    A hint of something - than it was gone. Khai was not lying, not exactly, but not was as he painted it.

    “Good, good, this pleases me, all of it,” Vol said, smiling happily at both of them. “Abeloth - you had the pleasure of working with High Lord Sarusu Taalon, and our esteemed Saber Gavar Khai. There are others I wish to introduce to you.”

    He beckoned them forward, seemingly trusted and proud of the Lord’s and High Lords as he introduced them; the petite and pretty Lady Sashal, the poised and distinguished Workan, and “our true host, High Lord Takaris Yur. He is master of this Temple, in charge of guiding our younglings properly along the path of the dark side.”

    Abeloth smiled beatifically at them all, though there was a flash – just the merest fraction of an instant – when Vol sensed something so alien that even he felt unnerved. “Such a pleasure. I trust, High Lord Yur, you are proud of the younglings you have trained.”

    “Indeed,” Yur said, inclining his head. “We are the purest possible Sith lineage.”

    “Vestara was one of your students?”

    “One of my finest.”

    A smile, so sweet it would drown the insect that flew into it for sustenance. “She appears to be excelling at her current assignment.”

    “A teacher could hope for no more.”

    “No,” Abeloth said. “To see the younglings excel… to now they are devoted to the principles one instills in them…” Again the strange flicker that sent a chill down Vol’s spine. “Well… one could die happy then, couldn’t one?”

    And Vol realized, suddenly, Yur saw what he had.

    “Your timing is excellent,” Vol said, changing the subject. “The masque is just about to begin.”

    She froze, turning slowly toward him. “I thought a masquerade was a sort of costume party,” she said.

    “It is! But a masque itself is a play. Theatre. It is all about pretending to be something you are not.” He smiled pleasantly. “If you will accompany me, I assure you I have the best seat in the house reserved for you.”


    —-
    Darth Insipid swore. Feelingly.

    “Alright,” he said, taking a breath. “We’re at a masquerade. You’re two very convincing costumes, but try not to draw too much attention to yourself...” he eyed Helinith even though she was human.

    “We need to get out. Back the way we came. No killing. You can’t be harmed whilst walking but your mind will think it has been and will hurt you to compensate - it can kill you if you die here.” With no further input Insipid strode out from behind the curtain, heading deeper into the Hall, towards a box and stage that the various Sith were edging towards. Seats were present, and beautiful actors were getting into position.

    Abeloth, Goddess of Chaos, Old One, and Beloved Queen faintly frowned at Insipid’s cloaked form, before laughing innocently at whatever Grand Lord Vol had said, allowing herself to be guided to the box over the stage. She turned her head slightly, scanning the curtain where they had once stood. A Sith in the milking crowd followed her gaze, and noticed the closed curtain, heading their way.

    Keeping in mind that there were thirteen Sith Lords, seven High Lords, one Grand High Lord and a Goddess present among the dozens of guests, all Sith of only two species, one had to be exceptionally careful today. Insipid would not protect them - he dare not. Not with an Old One present.

    He saw a table of candies and goblets of sweet-smelling drinks, and Insipid’s heart sank. If Helinith saw those...



    Several moments later, Vol, Abeloth, Yur, Workan, Sashal, and a handful of others who were no doubt patting themselves on the back at being selected for the honour sat in an elaborate box, peering down at the stage. Others took their seats, the vast room filled now with the eager murmuring of an anticipatory crowd.


    The room went dark. A moment later there was a bright light on the stage, and a perfect, albeit much smaller, replica of the Omen hovered there, about to crash precariously into a perfect, albeit much smaller, representation of the Takara mountain range. Some of the most attractive Keshiri whom Vol had ever seen played their own ancestors. They exaggerated their primitiveness, wearing scandalously little in the way of clothing made of animal hides as they pointed up at the Sith vessel and exclaimed, “What is it? It is far too large for any bird or uvak!”


    Vol did not watch the play. It was broad, stylized, and while the actors were likely perfectly adequate, it was a piece of propaganda. He watched instead the being for whom the play had been written.


    Abeloth gazed at the stage, her golden brows lowered in a frown, her lovely mouth thinned. At last, she turned to Vol and asked, “This is a piece of your mythology, is it not? Like Saber Khai’s black bird?”


    “No,” Vol replied. “It is a slice of our real history. This play will show how the Omen, filled with our ancestors, came to crash on Kesh, and how the Lost Tribe was welcome as the Protectors.”


    Her voice, mien, and presence in the Force revealed nothing. “Protectors?”


    “Surely you know the story,” he said. “When the Omen first arrived on Kesh, our forebears were welcome and regarded almost as divine beings. You see, the Keshiri believed that - ” He broke off and leaned forwarded, addressing Khai. “Gavar, I can’t believe you failed to enlighten our guest on the single most important moment in our history!”


    Caught off-guard, Khai still managed to shield his feelings. “It is our present and future I chose to discuss with Abeloth,” he said.


    “And yet here you are, dressed as a Tuash!” Vol clucked his tongue disapprovingly. “For shame!” He returned his attention to Abeloth.


    “I suppose it falls to me. You see, the Keshiri had an ancient myth about magical and powerful beings called the Protectors. The Protectors would defend and save the Keshiri when the feared Destructors eventually returned. The Destructors, according to ancient Keshiri myth, periodically descended on inhabited worlds to wipe out civilizations and return all beings to their natural, primitive states.”


    “A legend,” Abeloth said. “As accurate as a giant bird, black or white, foretelling safety or doom.”


    Vol shrugged. “Perhaps. Perhaps not. We have conducted our own research. Such a planetwide catastrophe has been visited upon this world at least once.”


    “You disappoint me, Lord Vol,” Abeloth said. “I had not thought you so susceptible to stories told by primitive beings. The events you speak of are natural disasters, nothing more.”


    “Be that as it may, I think you know the point of the original Sith embraced it.”


    She smiled slowly. “Indeed. It would be foolish not to exploit such an opportunity. One might think that the Keshiri would have resented your ancestors for perpetuating such a deception.” She turned to Lady Sashal. “Lady Sashal. You were lied to and taken advantage of.”


    Sashal gave her a slight smile. “Our ancestors were,” she said. “Not I. While the humans of the Lost Tribe and the Keshiri are different races, no one has ever been excluded from achieving high rank if she can prove herself worthy. You yourself worked with Sarusu Taalon. It is merit, not genetics, that enables one to rise or fall in our culture.”


    “Yes,” said Abeloth. “I did work with Taalon.” Vol noticed she left it at that. Sashal apparently did not notice, and continued.


    “The arrival of the Lost Tribe helped my people. They brought civilization – medicine, technology, art. And now both Keshiri and the Tribe stand together as Sith, poised not only to guard against the return of the Destructors, if they do exist, but to do far more – to conquer the galaxy. It is our destiny. And you can be part of that.”


    Abeloth did not bother to hide her amusement, and Lord Vol shook his head inwardly at the delicious irony. Lady Sashal was the staunchest advocate Abeloth had in the Circle. And yet she had, apparently obliviously, treated this powerful being with condescension. No, Lady Sashal might have her political machinations going full force, but she was foolish He would not discount her, of course. Vol never discounted his enemies until they were dead. Sashal might be stupid… but stupid beings could still be very dangerous.


    He realized he actually might be grateful to the petite Keshiri female. Sashal had distracted Abeloth, and he could observe this potential enemy more readily.


    So very often, he mused, stupid people, though dangerous, were useful.


    ---

    Darth Insipid listened, augmenting his hearing to follow the conversation.

    Abeloth knew of the Protectors already.

    It was the only possible explanation for her still, still, still reaction - she had been unwilling to betray her thoughts but had anyway by refusing to react at all. It had stood in stark contrast in the midst of the her playacting in front of the Tribe. But they had not realised, in their arrogance, that how important the word Protectors was to her...

    But how? Abeloth came into being shortly after the War of the Temporal Planes, and was imprisoned until the Twilight Wars. Had they -

    No, how could it have been? But then, why would Yanjon and Faya -

    Didn’t Caedus -

    That was impossible. Why would they purposely -? Insipid regarded the sceptre again.

    What are you trying to tell me?

    What did the Protectors do? And when? How was Insipid supposed to cherrypick the right moment from sixty-five millennia of Protector history and figure it all out before -

    Was Insipid interfering with some Master Plan that he should never have? What consequences would there be for them all?

    He started as something truly alien brushed his consciousness. Not nonhuman like Renn or Bernael, but completely and utterly inconceivable, a mind something so far removed from
    Insipid’s version of sentience that -

    Oh no.

    Abeloth was looking at him.

    TAG: @darthbernael, @darthhelinith

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

    OOC: Parts 2 and 4 transcribed from Fate of the Jedi: Ascension


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    Last edited: Jun 14, 2019
  24. darthbernael

    darthbernael EU Community Mod, House was on fire, not my fault star 4 Staff Member Manager

    Registered:
    Apr 15, 2019
    IC: Renn Turon
    Location: Plaza/Shuttle/Sith Temple


    "Have you had to say goodbye to someone before, Renn? What's the best way to go about it?"

    The only outward sign, at first, that Renn had heard Helenith was a small hitch in his step, a slight hardening to the bark like texture of his skin, and a dark glint that appeared in his yellow-green eyes.

    "I have been awake for 600 years, little one, I have said goodbye to many. There is never a good way to go about it, it always hurts. What hurts worse though is when you never get to say goodbye. Have you ever heard of the Ryyk Nebula? It used to be a star system with a habitable planet, my home world. As far as I know I am only one of two who escaped its destruction. My family, my friends, my whole society gone, and I never got to say goodbye."

    He looked down on her sadly, learning a little of what brought about the melancholy in his new companion. He knew...his thought broke off as a lavish shuttle touched down just before the exit to the plaza. Keshiri servitors exited and called to the three of them. It seemed that Lord Insipid had decided to shorten the journey to him.

    As they flew Renn saw that Bernael was deep in thought so he left him in peace. Looking over to the other side he likewise saw that the servitors had provided all the alcohol Helenith could want. ‘So we each have our own way of preparing’ he thought, still wondering how this Lord was that inspired such differing preparations to meet him. He sat back, enjoying the finery, not often he traveled in style, or in something big enough for him to stretch out in.

    They arrived at the Sith Temple, moments behind another shuttle that deposited a solitary figure, sceptre in his hand. As they exited Renn could feel the energy, the power radiating from this one, ‘Must be the Lord my two companions know of old.’ The greeting did nothing but confirm his thoughts. They entered the Temple, crossing the hall and entering an alcove on the far side, a curtain being, mostly, drawn closed behind them. As they did Lord Insipid described what was ahead for them. Apparently the sceptre was what was behind their bond and what was further to come, if the words he heard were true. ‘Flow walking? Hmmm.'


    Everything became a swirl of colors and as it did he felt the bond dissipate. He could feel each being and the darkness of their thoughts even still, a curse of being so sensitive to the flow and patterns of the Force. When the universe returned to order, they were all standing in the same alcove, the curtain still separating them from the main area. As they prepared to move, Renn felt wave upon wave of Force energy wash over him. Lord Insipid’s was the same as it had been, Helenith’s still had a tinge of sadness, Bernael was all but a void in the Force. But from the hall, power, in dizzying levels. And then it was as if a dark star had been born in the hall, something of vast and terrible power had appeared.


    ‘I’m going to die without even getting my new, little friend to laugh again, and all so we can learn something their old Master wants us to know.', he thought. Lord Insipid swept the curtain aside and they entered the hall. It was awash with light, color, noise, and more importantly darkly glowing presences. His eyes saw the costumery, the finery; his mind saw wells of power, varying from deep pools to, in one spot, where he saw a female form clad in white and silver, the blazing dark star he had felt, seemingly drinking in the power and energy of the other beings. ‘Can these preening, seemingly fops not tell they’ve brought a god into their midst?’


    He followed Lord Insipid as he made his way across the hall. As he moved Renn realized that this would be even more difficult for him, the only being that came close to his size was that dark presence itself. 'Vampire, we're screwed if they ask us to remove our masks.' Renn sent the thought across to Bernael. He had none and Bernael was certainly not human or Keshiri. In that Lord Insipid and Helenith had the advantage. He could feel the draining presence scan the hall, briefly passing over them as it saw the slight sway to the curtain behind which they had just departed.


    He knew he could not truly die here, his corporeal form was still at the Temple, the future Temple, but with that being, not to mention the others of power here, he was sure Lord Insipid’s warning would hold true. He could also feel that, should it come to that, each of them would have to find a way to escape without injury, and without being separated from the others.


    Half paying attention to the story being told, interesting history that it was, he almost missed Lord Insipid stop dead still. Coming to a stop closely but far enough away to not necessarily appear to be with him, Renn could feel that the one being they most needed to avoid had zeroed in on the Lord.


    “Careful my friends, that massively powerful being seems to have noticed something about us, let's hope it doesn’t decide to eat us.” he whispered to Bernael and Helenith, his voice just loud enough to carry to Helenith’s ears, Bernael able to hear what he said no matter what. If that gaze turned his way, he knew there would be no way to hide his true nature. That power would see through any illusion, any mental image he tried to project save that of what he was. His only recourse was to hope that the Lord managed to deflect it’s attention. He prepared himself as best he could, a tight bleak grin on his face, not knowing what the Lord, or perhaps the sceptre’s, true plan was for them to have traveled to this dangerous point in the timeline.

    Tags: @darthhelinith @Sinrebirth
     
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  25. darthhelinith

    darthhelinith Jedi Grand Master star 6

    Registered:
    Feb 10, 2009
    IC: Darth Helinith
    Getting into trouble

    Helinith listened carefully to Renn’s words. They were not particularly comforting and she felt bad for bringing up something that was clearly a rather painful topic.

    “I’m sorry to open an old wound. Forget I said anything.”

    She brooded for the rest of the trip, although the Keshiri were kind enough to lay out the sort of spread that only she could truly appreciate. She indulged in a gin, but it was more to please them than herself, though she made sure to stock up on any other sweet treats.

    Insipid waited them at the other end of the short shuttle ride.

    “Former Master!” She bounced towards him, finding herself quite unable to stay dour in his presence. It certainly didn’t feel like a goodbye just yet.

    Insipid appeared to want to do or say something, but the staff of office that she recognised from before seemed to interrupt him. As such, formal greetings appeared off the table, as he led them swiftly across the hall to an alcove on the other side. He winked at her, as he pulled across a large curtain. “It has been a while that we've gotten into trouble together, no?"

    She chuckled. “Occupational hazard. We’ve gotten quite good at weaselling our way out of things.”

    "But more seriously," Insipid nodded and continued, "if you have ever gone flow-walking into the past, you will know that you cannot change the flow of the Force. It’s impossible. But you can change the memories of those who were here. So while whomever is here will probably be dead, and won’t remember us gallivanting... let's not risk it. The sceptre, seemingly, wants to show us something."

    “Flow-whating now?” Which lecture was this? Changing memories…

    She was interrupted by a swirl of colour, which reminded her somewhat of the onetime she’d accidentally ingested a death stick, a lifetime ago.

    It took her about a second or two to realise the stab of fear that she felt wasn’t hers. And when she realised where it came from, she was highly perturbed. If Insipid was afraid…

    The masquerade ball was oddly tame and it wasn’t until the immense monsterous creature appeared - it was in human form but how it felt in the force was completely foreign- that Helinith understood his concern. Nothing else stuck out to her, it somewhat reminded her of the fancy parties she’d attended in courts of Sith Lords past, although she didn’t recognise any of the costumes, aside the obvious Jedi.

    “Alright,” Insipid said, taking a breath. “We’re at a masquerade. You’re two very convincing costumes, but try not to draw too much attention to yourself...” He looked at her pointedly and she feigned offence. “Former Master, as if I would ever.”

    “We need to get out. Back the way we came. No killing. You can’t be harmed whilst walking but your mind will think it has been and will hurt you to compensate - it can kill you if you die here.”

    “So not deadly but also deadly. Good to know.” She gave a little thumbs up at Renn and Bernael, following Insipid out and trying to look as if she fitted in. She kinda wished she was wearing her old imperial armour, which would have been a better getup than her usual garb, definitely a more obvious costume at any rate. Maybe she could draw on an imperial cog later.

    Around half-way across the hall, a sweet smell drew her nose towards a delectable table, piled high with all sorts of delicious goodies. She stopped and admired it before taking a hesitant step towards it.

    Was it okay to take something? Insipid had said they should try to blend in. Was this one of those fancy deals where the High Lord had to eat first? Or could you just help yourself?

    She looked around.

    Everyone was moving away from her towards the stage- there was a heart-in-her-mouth moment where she suddenly realised she couldn’t see anyone else, but then she saw Renn’s huge form and relaxed. Keeping a Neti around sure was useful.

    Maybe she could just sidle over and look really casual about it. Or pretend she was a waiter, restocking it. If anyone asked, she was a Keshiri servant dressed up as a human, that could work.

    Pleased with her own solution, she reached out.

    Tags: @darthbernael @Sinrebirth
     
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