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Star Wars CLOSED Aftermath and Beginnings

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

  1. darthbernael

    darthbernael EU Community Mod, House was on fire, didn't do it star 4 Staff Member Moderator

    Registered:
    Apr 15, 2019
    IC: Darth Bernael
    Location: Multiple



    Having taken the lead, Bernael was headed to the exit he had chosen from the plaza and was therefore closest to the shuttle when it touched down before the group. When the Keshiri exited and ushered them inside, he was somewhat pleased they would not have to fight their way back to Lord Insipid. However, such lavishments and easy transport did not bode well for the next phase of their journey together.

    He entered and sat in the deep, comfortable seats of the cabin. Seeing Renn enter he knew the Neti would have questions or want conversation but he had thinking to do. He also saw Helenith enter and head to the alcohol, only choosing one item. Sitting back, he closed his eyes behind the mask. So much had already happened since he arrived, seeing his old Master again, the carnage at the cafe, being sent to retrieve Helenith, suddenly having Renn join them. It also suggested that there was a reason for why such a diverse group had been brought together. He knew Lord Insipid would not directly provide the answers, that he would have to find them himself.

    The shuttle touched down and Bernael exited last. When he did, he saw that they had arrived at the Sith Temple; and that his old friend had arrived just before them. There were greetings exchanged, truncated ones, as the sceptre seemed to be drawing the entire group into the temple. They reached a curtained alcove and Lord Insipid made a short explanation about flow walking and that it appeared their next stage of the journey was to do so.

    The universe dissolved into a riot of colors and as it resolved, Bernael found himself, and the group, still standing in the alcove, the curtain partially drawn, shielding the from the main hall. Beyond the curtain, Bernael could sense multiple, high level Force presences. With such beings arrayed against them, Bernael reached into his mind and slowly blanked his presence in the Force, making him almost invisible that way. Whenever they had come, this was a gathering of important beings. And then a deep, dark, humming with power presence, seemingly familiar, appeared.

    Before they moved, Lord Insipid spoke, “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...” This was obviously directed at Renn and himself. “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.”

    Stepping out of the alcove behind Lord Insipid, Bernael’s eyes zeroed in on a large, female looking form. It was not hard to have the eye or the senses drawn to it as it was, aside from Renn, the largest being in the hall. It was clad in silver and white, and it felt like the shadows wished to drape themselves around it, enfold it in their embrace, and openly proclaim who it was, but were being held back. ‘He’s brought us basically face to face with the Mother, with Abeloth?’ he thought. Scanning the crowd of, admittedly, strong Sith, he could feel that none seemed to know the truest extent of who was casually standing there speaking to two of them.

    The three of them trailed behind Lord Insipid, following him across the room. Abeloth being the most obvious and apparent threat to their existence, Bernael kept track of the conversation she was having with the two beings as they began to move toward the stage area. He saw Helenith become distracted by the sweets and drink on their way, and veer closely toward the table groaning with them. He knew it would be unwise for any of them to be fully separated from the others, and while he could see and sense that she saw Renn, he tailed her, giving her space so she was not uncomfortable by his presence, but close enough he could alert her and they could move quickly, should things turn south.

    His ears perked up when he heard a term, from the conversation he was following, “Protectors”. It immediately sparked memories of listening to the ancients drone on, when learning the history of his people and the galaxy, as a young Anzat, in the training center. A word very much like that one, if not the same word, had been used multiple times by the ancients. He sorely wished that the ghost of a datapad he had with him actually was able to connect to his data-banks as he was sure he could remember other references to a Protector or such, from temples that predated most civilizations in the galaxy.

    And then things did turn south. He had been about to say something to Helenith, as she reached for the table, when he heard Renn. “Careful my friends, that massively powerful being seems to have noticed something about us, let's hope it doesn’t decide to eat us.” Moving slowly, so as not to draw attention by wildly swinging his head, he looked over to where Lord Insipid was frozen in place, Renn close behind him. Following the line of sight of his friend he silently swore, Abeloth was looking directly at him. Luckily Renn had not been caught up in her scrutiny yet but such a being stood out like a Sith in the midst of the hall of the Great Jedi Temple on Coruscant if he drew scrutiny.


    Bernael used the crowd to obscure his movements as he closed the remaining distance to Helenith. He brushed up against her, almost as if he was perusing the table of delicacies, as she was. “I’d be more than willing to bet you know who that large being is and how negative is the fact that she is currently staring at directly at Lord Insipid.” He dare not say more or draw attention to them as well.

    Tags: @darthhelinith @Sinrebirth
     
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  2. Sinrebirth

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

    Registered:
    Nov 15, 2004
    IC: Darth Insipid
    Panic

    The Sith Lord never forgot that Helinith was particularly poor at following specific instructions when food was around, but he had hoped more of Bernael, but of course he was running heard over Helinith and Renn, as Insipid had encouraged. Damnable. There was only so much he could do in the middle of the play, which was continuing on to describe how the Tribe came to rule the Keshiri and expunged traitors in the Sith and natives in the early years, the heroic leader Korsin outmaneuvering all of his opponents and secretly training his daughter as his true and brilliant successor. There would be a time-jump about now...

    Ah yes, a break in the proceedings. The Sith clucked among each other in the box but Abeloth excused herself to wander down into the masses, Grand Lord Vol watching with a pinched and curious expression. He nodded to High Lord Workan, and the man began to make his way after Abeloth. Workan was a particularly astute and powerful Sith, and he'd had to be killed by Luke Skywalker himself... about five weeks from now, as a matter of fact. Vol had less time than that.

    But Abeloth... it was never clear when an Old One was dead, as Insipid himself knew - as Bernael likely appreciated, what with his species and their dark origins. If she survived in any shape or form whatsoever, anywhere, and Insipid was not entirely convinced that was not the case, then she would remember that they had been here, and she had fought Insipid at Mortis and she would recognise him.

    Darth Insipid stood from his chair and turned to the other three, who were congregating around the snacks. Most of the other Sith were focused on a hundred other intrigues, but Insipid was not counting their chances. With a hiss, he snarled. "I gave you explicit instructions to leave, my friends. You do not want Abeloth to remember you, she is the Dark Celestial of Chaos, the Beloved Mother of the Pius Dea, the self-proclaimed Goddess of the Stars -"

    "Self-proclaimed, oh my," Abeloth had suddenly joined the quartet. "Do you doubt me already, Sith? Because while I do not recognise you..." Her gaze slid across Bernael, Helinith and Renn. "You seem to recognise me." In the Force, her mind draped across their mental forms. It was as if a particularly cold and moist tentacle of longing had curved across their shoulders, caressed their cheeks, and intimately ensnared them. She was something unearthly, beyond their definition. "... you seem to know me... and the Tribe most certain do not know you..."

    Her hand seemed to reach out for the scepter, and Insipid made sure it was out of her reach. He had no choice but to return the entreaty. Darth Insipid's grin grew carnivorous. "We wouldn't want these Sith to realise that the Return is upon us, and that you are the Destructor of legend, would we? I mean, they're hardly Protectors, but there are thousands of them and one of you..." He absently drew a drink to his hand and sipped it, keeping an eye on High Lord Workan. "It is so hard to remember all the worlds you have squatted upon, isn't it? I am sure you remember Coruscant, and more besides, but Kesh? This was an unimportant world, wasn't it?"

    Abeloth's eyes hardened, and she reached her hand out to touch Renn's shoulder, masking the movement behind an illusion so for the merest second her hand was beside her side and then on his bark. "A threat implies that you consider yourself my equal, child. I need only set fire to your dear friend here," she glanced to Helinith, "or perhaps snap her neck," another gaze to Bernael. "Or give Coda's vile creation a nudge so his hunger goes beyond his control..." her grey eyes settled on Darth Insipid. "And the situation will be very different."

    "Perhaps," said Insipid, gambling with their very lives. "Or perhaps you need to take control of the Tribe more than you need to destroy us, who are nothing more than interlopers in your Grand Design, after all." He sipped again. "Is it worth it?"

    Workan was nearly here now, with four Saber's in attendance. Insipid was not convinced he could best the aristocrat, but the others could handle the Sabers if it came to it... but it was all moot if Abeloth lost her temper. The moment held for a long time; too long.

    TAG: @darthbernael, @darthhelinith
     
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  3. darthbernael

    darthbernael EU Community Mod, House was on fire, didn't do it star 4 Staff Member Moderator

    Registered:
    Apr 15, 2019
    IC: Darth Bernael
    Face to face with a God


    Bernael only had a moment to warn Helenith before he heard Lord Insipid’s hissed curse. "I gave you explicit instructions to leave, my friends. You do not want Abeloth to remember you, she is the Dark Celestial of Chaos, the Beloved Mother of the Pius Dea, the self-proclaimed Goddess of the Stars -"

    The break could only mean one thing, that they had been discovered, and by Her. Slowly turning, he saw that Lord Insipid and Renn had joined Helenith and him. Beyond that, the imposing form of Abeloth reared. "Self-proclaimed, oh my, do you doubt me already, Sith? Because while I do not recognise you..." As she spoke Bernael could feel the power of her gaze as it raked across all of them, feel the cold, dark, syrupy texture of her essence as she looked at them.. "You seem to recognise me.... you seem to know me... and the Tribe most certain do not know you..." Beyond Abeloth, he could see at least one of the two who had been seated with her approaching.

    He could feel her essence settle around them, around him. It was powerful, no doubt, but he would not let that show, fear would only exacerbate what she thought to do to them. He vaguely heard Lord Insipid try to convince her to withdraw, as he fought to keep her from his mind, from taking him, and using him as a puppet. He did hear her threats afterward though. "A threat implies that you consider yourself my equal, child. I need only set fire to your dear friend here," He could see her hand by her side, a shadow, and a tentacle of power draped around Renn as she said this. "Or perhaps snap her neck," and while he and Helenith had never spent time in the same circles, he would do his all to get her out of this as well. "Or give Coda's vile creation a nudge so his hunger goes beyond his control..." He stood calmly through Abeloth’s threat, he’d heard his kind called worse over the eons. "And the situation will be very different."

    While Lord Insipid attempted again to reason with Abeloth, Bernael thought furiously. He sifted through his memories and knowledge, to find something that would cause this chaotic being to turn away from them. He could feel the silence afterward, and how it stretched. A toothy smile formed behind his mask as he thought.

    “You say you could drive my hunger beyond my control, the secret is that I am always hungry so why control it, I just aim it.” He could sense her bristle at a being such as he rebuking her, as planned. “You say the Tribe does not know us, Mother, but do they truly know you? Are your plans sufficiently advanced that exposing us would not reveal more than you desire? Lord Insipid called you the Destructor, so would your actions not turn these thousand Sith against you before you obtain what you are here for?”

    Bernael could feel Abeloth’s attention beginning to focus on him, the anger at the insectile creation of an ancient foe actually standing up to her, and that could, should, give the others a small opportunity. The powerful Sith who had trailed Abeloth had almost reached them. Something had to break. And then he picked up a stray thought, his eyes glittered and his smile widened behind the mask. 'There is Truth and then there is truth.' he thought before he spoke.

    “It seems enough of you is known, and one called Grand Lord Vol has fallen under your will, even if he shows it not. Why else would he send his deputy to ensure nothing happens to you?” He asked just before the other Sith entered earshot. Bernael could feel her hesitation, the conflict of emotions even a god endured. “Why bother with such minimal presences as us when you have such as that to adore you?”

    Tags: @darthhelinith @Sinrebirth
     
    Last edited: Jun 20, 2019
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  4. darthhelinith

    darthhelinith Jedi Grand Master star 6

    Registered:
    Feb 10, 2009
    IC: Darth Helinith
    Location: In trouble

    Helinith swallowed and put a hand to her own neck at the monster's threat.
    Insipid and Bernal instantly raised the stakes, and - not for the first time, nor would it be the last - Helinith felt very out of her depth.
    What did the monster desire? She had the power to kill every single person in the room, so why didn't she just do so and take what she wanted? This was all very strange- she couldn't make head or tail of it.

    "Well, if you are about to kill us, for what its worth, I really like your outfit. It's very pretty." She smiled and tried to meet the monster's gaze.

    She might have been shivering- maybe the temperature had suddenly dropped.

    Tag: @darthbernael @Sinrebirth
     
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  5. darthbernael

    darthbernael EU Community Mod, House was on fire, didn't do it star 4 Staff Member Moderator

    Registered:
    Apr 15, 2019
    IC: Renn Turon
    Location: Threatened with death


    Having followed and then waited while Lord Insipid observed the performance, Renn approached Bernael and Helenith as the Lord joined them. He couldn't even hear the warning given before a wave of icy, inky, darkness rolled over his senses.

    Turning, his gaze almost level with the being that had joined their group, he could see beyond the color of its eyes, see the almost abyssal depths of its essence. 'Oh crap, why did he bring the god over here?' he thought, only minimally overcoming his terror.

    Most of what passed between her and Lord Insipid he missed as he attempted to overcome his desire to shift to the smallest possible form and disappear. He began to come out of his terror just as he felt the, seemingly slimy, frozen caress of her tentacles as they moved across his surface.

    As scared as he was his mind latched onto several things, she called him an old friend of the Lord, she threatened to turn him into a pyre, snap his new, little, friend's neck, and turn Bernael into a feral version of what he was. His mind shut down his terror in that instant. A god this being may be but Renn was Renn and could not be anything less.

    As he was considering his options he heard Bernael begin his own approach to getting them away from Abeloth. 'Typical vampire, threatening a god.' he thought, wondering how Bernael had lived as long as he had if he did things like that.

    Opening his mouth, the words locked up as he heard Helenith speak "Well, if you are about to kill us, for what its worth, I really like your outfit. It's very pretty." Whatever he had planned was lost as a quiet laugh bubbled up. 'Yups, crazy, but fun!'

    Changing his tack, he turned to Lord Insipid, "I never knew you'd followed my exploits so much we were old friends, but who should doubt a god, right?" he said with a wink.

    As he turned again he took a step back as the tentacles had dropped from him with the others seeking Abeloth's attention. He passed close to Bernael as he did, 'You may want to die, vampire, but I don't.' he let the thought cross the minuscule distance between them.

    He came to a halt beside and slightly behind Helenith, leaning down a little, and whispering to her "Craziness, when this goes south, I'm grabbing you and making a line for the door, no matter who we may run over. Not losing my newest friend." As he spoke his arm, behind her, extended to where, in a second, she would be in his arms and over his shoulder to escape.

    Raising his head, he could see another Sith approaching, and Abeloth digesting all that had been said to her. 'Fun is fun but you have to survive to have fun' passed through his mind as he waited for something to explode.

    Tag: @Sinrebirth @darthhelinith
     
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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
    IC: Abeloth
    Keshiri banquet

    The Goddess of the Stars seemed to long consider this. Bernael made, frustratingly, a good point. She snatched at the mental connection between Renn and the Anzati, and parsed the whispers between the Neti and Helinith. But Abeloth was not one to concede when she could take the idea as her.

    Insipid stared at her, nonplussed, unable to ascertain what was going through her mind. Helinith projected confidence, and Renn and Bernael had an air of preparation to them both, but Insipid simply kept his gaze on the Old One, and the staff away from her grasp.

    Workan was closing. Seemingly divining that she would not have control of the situation when he made his way across the room, Abeloth smiled tartly at Helinith and for a brief moment Insipid's heart sank. A surge of protectiveness overtook the Sith Lord and his hand dropped the hilt barely visible on his belt; if Abeloth noticed, she didn't care.

    "Thank you for the compliment, my child," she said, sweetly. For a moment, the illusion that Abeloth revealed slipped, showing just how beautiful she really was.

    [​IMG]

    Insipid winced, even though he already knew what she looked like. Of course, Abeloth didn't know that, but she had worked out enough. "I think that I will revisit our conversation another time, my friends. After all, killing all these potential worshippers will only mean I have to find more. Very tiresome, no?" With a smile of her full expression, the moment passed, and she turned away, though her eyes did caress them in turn, a shiver running down each their spines.

    Her smile grew beatific, and then the fear was gone, consumed by her. Abeloth managed not to smack her lips in satisfaction as she strode to Workan, placing a hand by his arm to redirect him. She was again beautiful, her ghastly appearance concealed from all present. Workan frowned their way, but he allowed Abeloth to redirect him and the Sabers stood on warning.

    Insipid looked at the staff. "Are we done?"

    For a moment, there was only a blur, and they were back in the Temple a century later - abandoned, empty, in disrepair.

    On the wall, written in dried blood, however, was something altogether new.

    I look forward to seeing you all again.

    Insipid scowled. "She's dead, don't worry. Lady Belligerent ran her through with the Dagger of Mortis. Don't worry about that." Insipid flicked a finger, masking his concern. He eyed them all individually. "I think I need a stiff drink," the Sith Lord said with a chortle.

    May as well laugh.

    TAG: @darthhelinith, @darthbernael x2
     
  7. darthhelinith

    darthhelinith Jedi Grand Master star 6

    Registered:
    Feb 10, 2009
    IC: Darth Helinith
    Location: pre-drunk?

    Renn's whisper caught Helinith off guard and she felt her cheeks get hot but she wasn't going down without a fight.

    "Thank you for the compliment, my child."

    Helinith saw it.

    Oh gods.

    Not even the presence of the thing had prepared her for... that.
    Her face went grey, the bile rose in her throat and she quickly covered her mouth with her hands- her life depended on it.

    "I think that I will revisit our conversation another time, my friends. After all, killing all these potential worshippers will only mean I have to find more. Very tiresome, no?"

    Helinith nodded slowly and swallowed acid with a shudder. The death-stick swirl couldn't come quick enough as she gagged, trying to get rid of the burning from the back of her throat.

    The bloody message left on the wall was not a pleasant welcome home.

    "I think I need a stiff drink"

    drink?
    Drink?

    "Drink?"
    Helinith put her fingers in her mouth and whistled a shrill note. At her call, three Keshiri servants dashed in and she waved at them.
    "Hey! Drinks! And we need fruit and straws and tiny umbrellas to put them in! I mean in them! Glasses!" she sighed. They probably knew what she meant, despite her not talking with the words out proper.

    The Keshiri disappeared and she pulled out a hip flask, tossing it from one hand to the other with a practised motion, before opening the top and taking a sip to get rid of the taste of bile. It was good.

    She tilted her head to one side and considered only for a moment, suddenly violently tossing the hip flask at the threatening message, spinning it so as to ensure maximum impact of drink vs blood. Finally, she stuck out her tongue at it before turning to her former master.

    "WHAT THE HELL WAS THAT?! Can we agree to not go visiting weird and wonderful lands again without checking to make sure there's no creepy tentacle monsters first?" She flailed her arms to emphasise the tentacles.
    "I think that's the second time in 24 hours I've almost been sick. I don't mind if it's self-inflicted but I don't think I deserve that! No wait, I know I don't deserve that!"

    Tags: @darthbernael @Sinrebirth
     
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  8. darthbernael

    darthbernael EU Community Mod, House was on fire, didn't do it star 4 Staff Member Moderator

    Registered:
    Apr 15, 2019
    IC: Renn Turon
    Location: Then and Now


    Renn was tensed, waiting for what he thought would be inevitable, ready to scoop up his friend and carry her out of the hall, even as she flung quips behind them, if he must. And then another wave of the freezing darkness rolled over his senses as Abeloth revealed a portion of her true self to them. He’d spied a portion of it when he had looked into her eyes but this was worse, like he was drowning in darkness. His knee buckled under the onslaught, but he caught himself before he fell on Helenith.

    As Abeloth turned away, Lord Insipid queried the scepter and reality warped again. They had returned to the present, apparently, still standing where they were moments before. Yet there was a trace of the darkness that was Abeloth. As he looked around he spotted the message on the wall.

    I look forward to seeing you all again.

    It was in blood, drip marks dried long before. A not subtle at all message, warning, that the god would not forget them and that she meant to have them as hers.

    He heard Lord Insipid suggest drinks, Helenith seeming to second the idea by whistling sharply for the Keshiri to bring such, but Bernael was silent, still the void in the Force he’d been in the past.

    Renn turned to Lord Insipid, eyes more yellow than usual, almost golden, “These two do know you from the past, but I don’t. You are obviously extremely powerful, but if that sceptre can still take you where you know not, at least temporarily, that is dangerous, and wasteful of those in your care. I mean, come on, a hilarious yet crazy little assassin, a walking tree, and that ancient vampire there, seriously? You just brought us here Oh Powerful One.”

    Finished venting, Renn turned to see Helenith hurl a flask at the message, her way, it seemed, of dealing with it. “I think I’ll join you in that drink, my friend, we all need to wind down a bit. And I do have my sack in that shuttle that brought us here, so I’m sure if one of the Keshiri gets it, there will be something to cheer you up in it.”

    He gestured at one of the servants as they returned with the drinks, indicating the shuttle, as he finished talking. He took up one of the drinks, wondering what nutrients he could possibly get out of them. ‘Ah well better enjoy now, in good company, things are sure to get more interesting.’

    ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    IC: Darth Bernael
    Location: Facing Abeloth/Sith Temple


    Bernael stood calmly as his compatriots added their own pieces to trying to distract Abeloth. As strong as his mind was, he couldn’t penetrate hers, but he could tell she was thinking furiously. He saw a slight movement from his old Master as she thought, ‘Interesting’.

    Her calculations finally finished, she obviously had decided the odds were not favorable to get exactly what she wished here as she taunted them one last time. He heard her venom dripping sweet words to Helenith, and then he saw her mask drop, for an instant. He froze, statue like, having known, from his travels, the descriptions of her, but they gave no truth to the depth of darkness and sinister desire to be worshiped that was her essence.

    "I think that I will revisit our conversation another time, my friends. After all, killing all these potential worshippers will only mean I have to find more. Very tiresome, no?" He felt the depths of her words and knew she had taken the measure of them and would store that knowledge.

    His gaze turned to Lord Insipid as he looked at the staff and asked. "Are we done?"

    The universe blurred and they were back in the present time, by their point of view. He stood there, thinking, running through what had just occurred, deciding what could or might be the next steps in their journey. He heard Lord Insipid call for drinks and laugh, heard Helenith retching and, likewise, demanding drinks, felt Renn almost speak to him then turn his attentions to the other two.

    Then he heard the ring of metal on stone, turned his gaze up and saw the alcohol dripping off the obviously old message in blood.

    I look forward to seeing you all again.

    ‘Redundant’ he thought, knowing she had, long ago, captured their images and a feeling of their essence for when she would see them again.

    Tilting his head and turning it toward his old friend “There is much that I could ask now, my friend, but I know you and you would find ways to make me find the answers myself. Did you find out what you needed to know?” A tight smile hid itself behind the mask but he knew Lord Insipid would know it was there. “By the way, where is the Mortis Dagger now? If it’s where it could possibly be, you were parsing it very closely.” That was the most he would say to indicate he had seen the movement that had been made in the last tense moment.


    The drinks arrived, and while he would not usually take such, he took one then, as it would be impolite, even in the company of Sith, to refuse in such a situation. Looking over at Renn and Helenith, ‘I have a feeling these two are going to be my headache for some time. There are worse to be in the company of, but together their humor is cataclysmic.’

    TAGS: @Sinrebirth @darthhelinith
     
  9. Sinrebirth

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

    Registered:
    Nov 15, 2004
    IC: Darth Insipid
    Vexed, but amused

    Of course Helinith had drinks to hand. Keshiri servants from the shuttle came to the command of her, rushing to sort our glasses. Of course, there would be some to hand, to cover eventualities. It was a composite shuttle, Insipid's, designed for regalia and pomp and stocked at all times.

    "WHAT THE HELL WAS THAT?! Can we agree to not go visiting weird and wonderful lands again without checking to make sure there's no creepy tentacle monsters first?" Helinith was exploding, which was fair. Insipid resisted the urge to grin, because Renn was less pleased, not even the exhalation of relief.

    “These two do know you from the past, but I don’t. You are obviously extremely powerful, but if that sceptre can still take you where you know not, at least temporarily, that is dangerous, and wasteful of those in your care. I mean, come on, a hilarious yet crazy little assassin, a walking tree, and that ancient vampire there, seriously? You just brought us here Oh Powerful One.” Insipid glowered, but let the Neti vent for a moment, rather than respond, especially as Renn turned to Helinith.

    “I think I’ll join you in that drink, my friend, we all need to wind down a bit. And I do have my sack in that shuttle that brought us here, so I’m sure if one of the Keshiri gets it, there will be something to cheer you up in it.” A Keshiri overheard, and rushed back to the shuttle, as another supplied glasses.

    Insipid was more interested in Bernael for the moment. “There is much that I could ask now, my friend, but I know you and you would find ways to make me find the answers myself. Did you find out what you needed to know?”

    Right on the nose, as ever, cutting through his fear, because, in all likelihood, the Anzati had withdrawn into his void and prevented such smatterings of emotions from troubling him. "By the way, where is the Mortis Dagger now? If it’s where it could possibly be, you were parsing it very closely.”

    Again, the apt question. He answered for Helinith, however. "That was Abeloth, a Celestial of Chaos. A God, essentially, one of a pantheon worshipped by the original Sith. She's insane, but the Force made use of her to maintain the Balance."

    He paused. "It used to, anyway. The balance broke down with the rise of Darth Sidious, and now maintaining the scales falls into the hands of the Jedi and Sith. The Dagger was used to destroy her, though a remnant was recovered by her siblings, until they turned on each other recently." Insipid eyed Bernael. "Lady Belligerent has the Dagger, and where she is, I could not tell you."

    Perhaps you will tell me one day.

    "But yes, I did find what I needed, it seems." Insipid eyed the staff. "Though I had not realised I needed it."

    The Dark Lord's gaze turned back to Renn. "The staff has never done that before, I assure you. I have long sensed that it had a will, but by and large my actions have been in concordance with it. Never before has it exerted itself so." Insipid grinned lopsidedly. "But a pleasure to meet you, Renn."

    TAG: @darthbernael, @darthhelinith
     
  10. darthhelinith

    darthhelinith Jedi Grand Master star 6

    Registered:
    Feb 10, 2009
    IC: Darth Helinith
    newly-converted theist

    "A god?" she snorted. "Since when did we worship anything?"
    A Keshiri handed her a large bright-blue glass frosted with sugar and with several small umbrellas stuck in it. She pulled these out and stuck them in her hair, before taking a sip, listening in to the conversation between the other three and musing. It seemed Bernael was trying to figure out something that Insipid was perhaps trying to hint at- whatever it was Helinith couldn't say but she'd let them do the heavy lifting.

    Insane.
    Sometimes people said that she herself was insane. But from what little she had seen of Abeloth, she got the impression the word now had a different meaning.
    Celestial of chaos.
    Helinith had once jokingly referred to herself as an agent of chaos. Was that the god of chaos? Was the monster watching every single move Helinith made- every joke, every comment? Did her own chaos feed Abeloth's power? Or worse: was that her own future? Were celestials once humanoids that became insanely powerful and went completely mad? It seemed like a very lonely existence.

    I'm not Abeloth.

    Urgh, the tentacles. She'd be seeing those in her dreams for months.

    TAG: @darthbernael @Sinrebirth
     
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  11. darthbernael

    darthbernael EU Community Mod, House was on fire, didn't do it star 4 Staff Member Moderator

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


    Standing next to Helenith, Renn could feel her mind churning, the waves it made in the Force. As he pondered what he could do to help her out of it, the Keshiri returned with his sack. “Great, now lets see what I have.” Opening the sack, he reached in, ‘Hmmmm’. Reaching further, his arm seemed to continue flowing into the sack, the mass around the appendage flowing as it did so. “Fruity seems to be the theme, with the drinks, so, hmmm.” Pulling his arm back out, he had a, widespread, handful of candy. “Here you go Craziness, take your pick.” he said with a smile.

    He only half listened to the conversation between Lord Insipid and Bernael, those two could do the scheming and devising, he just enjoyed the show, and took care of his friends. Hurt them, scare them though and people would learn what a pissed off Neti could do.

    The Dark Lord's gaze turned back to Renn. "The staff has never done that before, I assure you. I have long sensed that it had a will, but by and large my actions have been in concordance with it. Never before has it exerted itself so." Insipid grinned lopsidedly. "But a pleasure to meet you, Renn."

    “A pleasure, Lord. Forgive the outburst but that energy, that power was unsettling, I needed to release the stress of it, the intense imagery it has seared my mind with, and Bernael was busy so it came to you. Candy?” Renn returned the Lord’s grin.

    Another Keshiri approached with a drink. Taking it he could barely see the liquid within, so full of umbrellas and fruit around the rim, it was. Looking at Helenith, he saw the umbrellas decorating her hair and his grin turned cheeky. The ones in his drink floated out, spun to get the liquid off, then slowly settled around and near the others already in her hair. “Cute!”

    “Hey vampire, you going to drink that?” He asked as he sensed the hesitation in Bernael, politeness warring with no true desire for the alcohol.


    -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


    IC: Darth Bernael
    Location: Sith Temple



    "Lady Belligerent has the Dagger, and where she is, I could not tell you."

    Bernael then felt the thought floating through Lord Insipid’s mind, which meant he was meant to sense it. ‘Perhaps you will tell me one day.’

    "But yes, I did find what I needed, it seems." Insipid eyed the staff. "Though I had not realized I needed it."

    Bernael’s mask turned back to looking at the wall, and the message. “Sometimes that is the only way to learn a lesson, it seems. But I am sure we will see her again soon, and not just her, if she is still abroad, in the galaxy. Those who ensure the balance seem gone and the pendulum’s swing is only going to get worse, in both directions, unless it’s settled.”

    He turned back to his old mentor. “As I thought, the answers I will have to find, and these two, while loose cannons, would be perfect for helping find those answers, if needed.” He could feel Renn and Helenith, a short distance away, and knew they were giving Lord Insipid and himself space to discuss whatever was needed. He knew they were both quite capable but they both seemed satisfied for him to be discussing the deeper matters, for now.

    A servant approached and handed him a colorful, fruity drink. Holding it, trying to decide if he should drink it or not, he heard Renn ask just that question. So as not to appear impolite, “This time, Renn, I think I will have this drink, alcohol’s lack of effectiveness on me not withstanding. He held it up, tipped it toward Helenith, Renn, and finally Lord Insipid. “Here’s to the next series of disasters to head our way.”

    TAGS: @Sinrebirth @darthhelinith
     
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  12. Sinrebirth

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

    Registered:
    Nov 15, 2004
    IC: Darth Insipid

    He nodded at Renn's apology and accepted the glass, quaffing it.

    "Since when?" Insipid shrugged in answer to Helinith. "A hundred millennia ago, the Sith were in league with the Architects and Old Ones, incredibly powerful and monstrous Force users. They were defeated by the Celestials, and those that survived locked away. Thirty-six millennia ago the last of them were destroyed when they escaped their prisons, but their minions were left with rule of the galaxy. The Rakata, the Sith, and other species like the Vagaari, Anzati, Hutts, and so forth." Insipid lazily gestured to Bernael. "The Republic and Jedi eventually rose to prominence, and the Sith were resurrected by fallen Jedi. The cycle has never ended, until, well, it did."

    He pointed to the stars, poorly visible even at this height as the sun set.

    Even as he did so, stars winked out.

    "With the return of the Father of Shadows." He lowered his hand. "Which is why I am ushering true Sith, who would not serve themselves or the Old Ones."

    TAG: @darthhelinith, @darthbernael
     
  13. darthbernael

    darthbernael EU Community Mod, House was on fire, didn't do it star 4 Staff Member Moderator

    Registered:
    Apr 15, 2019
    IC: Bernael

    Bernael stood, quiet, as Lord Insipid replied to Helenith, a dark, tight smile, behind his mask at the mention of the ‘gods’ and the remaining races of the time. He watched as the stars began to disappear. ‘So my creator’s son has returned, end of times indeed.’ he thought.

    “I sincerely doubt that that one would be pleased to see one of his ‘brothers’, so to speak. And it reminds me of your line of questioning and testing earlier.” The silver in his eyes disappeared completely and it seemed darkness oozed from the black voids that replaced the silver. “My creator made us what we are but we hold no love for him or the remainder of his family.”

    A tombstone laugh sounded, “As to the Anzati being one of those that ruled the galaxy after the gods departed, not bloody likely. We don’t work well with each other, let alone in large enough groups to rule more than that world, which even now must be going black, with the rest of existence. So the sooner we depart this failing realm, the better.”

    A hint of silver returned to his eyes as the darkness around him faded slightly, “You indicate there is a future, for those of us that grasp it, and grasp it I will.”

    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    IC: Renn

    Renn listened intently as Lord Insipid gave a brief discourse on the gods, their wars, and seeming destruction or vanishing. The Neti had their own view on the cosmology of the galaxy. In the past, he was sure his kind would have mostly served the Celestials, only a few serving those who opposed them.

    And then darkness seemed to gather around the vampire, as he spoke. Renn and Bernael had never really discussed eithers past too deeply, there never seemed time but as Bernael spoke Renn moved closer to Helenith. He knew, as a Sith, she didn’t need his protection, but it was more an instinctive movement, not wanting to have anything happen to his new friend, just in case.

    He let out a breath as he listened to the vampire’s words, ‘Worried for a moment that he was going to proclaim for the dark gods, but seems he has even less use for them than most of us do.’ he thought. He moved a minute step away from Helenith, not wanting her to feel uncomfortable with his presence so close, if she felt that way.

    “Vampire, I never knew how deep in the Dark your bloodline came from, but it does make sense. Knowing you, you would do something that would leave the rest of us running like terrified Gizka, like going for his throat, so to speak.” As he spoke he reached out and cuffed Bernael on the shoulder, trying to distract him from the dark thoughts he could feel bubbling inside his companion. It was about as effective as someone trying to sway him with a punch. In other words, not.

    Looking down at Helenith, he grinned, “Pretty, little, Craziness I don’t know about you but I would think we would be better served by hauling butt out of here, somewhere our type of chaos would be appreciated without worry that a god would immediately stomp on us. So please stop arguing semantics over what a god is or isn’t, with your old master, so he can do just that.”

    He reached into his sack once again and brought out another fruit roll, handing it to her with a broad smile, as he waited, in hopeful anticipation, for what she may say.

    TAGS: @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

    The Dark Lord of the Sith found himself staring into the sky, watching stars wink out. A reality of terror and horror, for Old Ones sought to enjoy their feasting. The reports had been quieting, now. Coruscant, Hapes and Korriban had been the first to suffer. Erased, their atmospheres replaced with methane, or other impossibilities. Mon Calamari's waters had been transformed so they were no longer poisoned, only for them to revert back once the Mon Calamari and Quarren returned en masses. The species who had betrayed the Old Ones - the Cthol, Hutts, Sharu and devolved Kwi, their stars had been ignited, reducing their homeworlds to nothing - which was the second time it had happened to the Hutts, would you believe, in their tumultous history. The Yuuzhan Vong, Vagaari and other Unknown Terrors had been unleashed upon the known galaxy, their baser natures encouraged and the hyperspace barrier between Unknown and Known abandoned.

    And so on.

    He returned his attention to the trio and levitated said fruit roll into his hand, so Renn would have to supply Helinith another. He eyed it, and interjected. "We have a place to go, but the staff wanted to test you, I expect. Perhaps even test myself, who knows."

    Insipid eyed Bernael. What few Sith had survived the rage of the Old Ones were debasing themselves trying to please their new rulers. True Sith had passed beyond the need for gods, Insipid sniffed. "I hear the Anzati are doing just fine - they ceded your kin the world of Taris and the entire population. Isn't that pleasant?"

    The Sith was merely emphasising that the Neti had opposed the Old Ones millennia ago, and the humans had been divided between them - but the Anzati had resolutely allied with them. It was a prudent question to ask, at this point.

    TAG: @darthbernael, @darthhelinith

    OOC: Just to keep the gears flowing in the interim.
     
  15. darthbernael

    darthbernael EU Community Mod, House was on fire, didn't do it star 4 Staff Member Moderator

    Registered:
    Apr 15, 2019
    IC: Bernael

    Bernael looked on as his old friend was lost in thought. Barely skimming the surface thoughts, he could pick up on the devastation already wrought upon the galaxy. ‘The Old Ones are seeking their revenge for all the wrongs done them by what they see as lesser species.’ He saw the roll fly from Renn’s hand and shook his head, Lord Insipid may be an extremely powerful being but he did like his little jokes as well.

    He listened as it was explained all that they had gone through already, short though it was. "We have a place to go, but the staff wanted to test you, I expect. Perhaps even test myself, who knows." Bernael’s head tilted to one side for a moment, ‘Testing even him? Hmmm’

    "I hear the Anzati are doing just fine - they ceded your kin the world of Taris and the entire population. Isn't that pleasant?"

    A snort sounded from behind his mask. “The youth, who perhaps have not learned the histories, or, in their immaturity, ignored such will find that a glorious bounty. The elders, however, are more than likely attempting to figure out how to remove themselves from the galactic equation. They know, either from direct experience, or from their forebears, that we moved away from the role the Old Ones saw us in and that most of us have no care or desire for any ‘God’. Which means either they have succeeded, or the Old Ones are soon to destroy what history my kind knows, to revert us to the state they took advantage of once Cold Danda Sine introduced us to the galaxy.”

    He paused, sent a mental command to a Keshiri servant, for a chalice of bloodsoup before continuing, eyes once more smoldering with semi repressed power.

    “Gods, Old Ones, whatever they by, I have no use for them, nor any such being that sees itself as a supreme being, Light or Dark. Both sides are ultimately responsible for bringing the galaxy to the state it currently occupies.”

    As he finished, the Keshiri he had prompted rushed back, careful not to spill a drop, and relinquished the chalice into his hands. He calmed the power he was exuding, and as he lifted his mask to drink his eyes could once more be seen to be silver. Looking toward Renn, he wondered what the Neti thought of how the galaxy was headed, given that his people had once firmly opposed the Old Ones.

    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    IC: Renn

    Renn knew he did not have the depth of Bernael’s ability to read thoughts but he could feel the currents of the Force easily. He could feel that Lord Insipid was somewhat despairing at the path the galaxy was taking, but also that he knew the death throes were in progress and that there was another way, another place they could exist, separate from the Gods.

    “Hey now!” He exclaimed as the fruit roll flew from the hand offering it to Helenith. The Lord obviously had his own sense of humor or was just an inconsiderate being, he was Sith after all.

    Renn heard Lord Insipid as he spoke to Bernael, "I hear the Anzati are doing just fine - they ceded your kin the world of Taris and the entire population. Isn't that pleasant?" No mention of Neti, if they existed, which meant either they hadn’t before the return of the Gods or, if any still had survived the Gods had decided that since the Neti had sided with those on the side of Light eons ago, had probably destroyed them. ‘I must be alone then, but there is a sliver of hope, I still have my fertilized seed pods.’ he thought.

    Again he hesitated when Bernael spoke, the Anzat could be unsettling from time to time. For a being of Darkness, he had the Anzati philosophy of rebuke toward any being that fancied itself a god. Lord Insipid could scare him because he was obviously a powerful being, but Bernael terrified him sometimes, for other reasons, even though he knew it would be near impossible for the Anzat to feed on him.

    “I see you give no mention of Neti. I had heard rumors there was a colony, somewhere in the Outer Rim, but I’m guessing they became someone’s lunch. If I’m truly the last, then no, I have no love for the Gods, either Light or Dark. Be they Light, they had to have allowed a beautiful species to pass from existence, even after serving them. Be they Dark, I wouldn’t serve them, even should the rest of the Sith choose to. Dark is dark, but even some things are too far.”

    “Besides, if they do come for us, who will keep my crazy little friend supplied with her candy?” He asked with a smile, as he pulled another roll out of his sack, keeping his hand closed around it, this time, until she could take it from him.

    TAGS: @darthhelinith, @Sinrebirth
     
    Last edited: Jul 16, 2019
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  16. Sinrebirth

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

    Registered:
    Nov 15, 2004
    IC: Darth Insipid
    The End

    Insipid shook his head at the levity between the three of them. He went to speak, having finished his appropriated treat, when the staff let out a gong, as if a bell-toll.

    “Ah, it is time.”

    He regarded the three of them, and threw around them a mental Force meld as if a blanket, suffusing them with his presence. Rigid Bernael, curious Renn, playful Helinith, yet each were underlined with other emotions; suspicion, fear, sadness. Insipid was not able to sort which was which of the latter emotions, but he did not need to.

    “Accept my connection.”

    He eyed the sky, as another star winked out of existence; as the Force, dimly, due to the distance, writhed with pain and terror and death. “It is time for us to leave.”

    He turned the glowing sceptre, and pointed. A portal opened; a hole in the world with a blue, storm-ridden edge. The Force cried out, screeching through them; a woman’s voice. Insipid was prepared for it, but it was impossible to describe how ethereal this was; how poignant; how pained; how determined. Driven through the middle of this emotion was the terrible necessity to it all - that this anguish was worth it.

    That it had to be done.

    As a Sith, Insipid rarely felt bad for what he did, but in torturing the Force, he had acquired a conscience. And he listened. Ah, he thought, nodding. His next pilgrim.

    The sceptre agreed.

    With a cry, Insipid held out his arms, broad, holding the way open. Bernael felt pressure upon his back to go; to hurry. The others would feel nothing more urgent than any other person peering at a tear in reality.

    “Go, you fools,” Insipid spat, blood dripping from the corner of his mouth. “Become the Dark in the Chaos, and impose our Will upon our Balance,” he hissed. “Upon the Force.”

    He wilted, but managed to stay on his feet, his hands still spread out, but the portal seemed to slightly contract.

    TAG: @darthbernael, @darthhelinith


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  17. darthhelinith

    darthhelinith Jedi Grand Master star 6

    Registered:
    Feb 10, 2009
    IC: Darth Helinith

    Location: back and there again



    So this was the end. The end of all things. Helinith moved towards and stood next to her former master. Her eyes had followed his gesture towards the evening sky where was a blank section of darkness, small but growing.

    "Like the switching out of lights." She stated simply.

    It didn't seem real. How many millions of lives were being consumed as they stood there? They were drinking a celebration but it felt more like a funeral: she half expected a dirge to start playing at any moment. Only a group of Sith could watch the world fall apart with such stoicism.

    You're not coming with us.

    She realized that she was holding her breath, and when she exhaled, it took extreme effort to keep it steady, to not let her shoulders shake, to not let the breath catch in the pressure in her throat. Ashamed, she glared up at the sky whilst stars threatened to sweep down her face.

    Swallow it down.
    Control.
    She closed her eyes.


    “Kneel before me."


    She had knelt in the dust, red sand whipping through her short brown hair. Two icy, piercing eyes cut to her soul.


    “I am a hard master. Unlike some sith, who bestow the title of 'Darth’ upon anything that lives and breathes, you will find no rest from me until I am certain you are worthy of it. Sweat, blood and tears will be borne before I am satisfied. You think you have been through hell but you know nothing of it yet. Therefore I name you Helinith. Bare it well, apprentice of Darth Insipid, Loremaster of the Sith”



    Travelling the galaxy, through apprenticeship and beyond, she had borne it proudly, far better than the stupid, worn out numeral she had had before. Blood and sweat their had been much of, so maybe this was the tears.

    A low rolling, rumble echoed from far away, thunder perhaps. Clouds were crawling across the sky, as more stars winked out. Even as the galaxy trembled, the weather on Kresh still had its way. For now.

    A metal gong tolled.
    “Ah. It is time.” Insipid stated simply.

    Screaming, bleeding darkness spewed across Helinith’s consciousness, intermingled with a static and a ringing tone that constantly changed frequency. Worse still, was the indescribable emptiness that coiled itself around her brain, freezing her thoughts momentarily to terror.

    As the staff tore open reality, Insipid flung out his arms to hold it, steady it. She watched and suddenly brought up the courage to do something she would have otherwise never have dared. She hugged him; a fierce, tight hug round the waist. Hopefully that was a good way to say goodbye, when you couldn’t quite manage the word. He wouldn’t like it, which was even better.

    "I've got a joke for you. How many Darth Insipids does it take to change a lightbulb? I'll tell you the answer when I next see you." She stood back as he staggered slightly, wiping her eyes with the back of her sleeve angrily. She turned away with a choking sob and took a deep breath.
    “Last one on the other side is a bantha fart.”

    She flung herself into hell.

    Tags: @darthbernael @Sinrebirth
     
    Last edited: Jul 24, 2019
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  18. darthbernael

    darthbernael EU Community Mod, House was on fire, didn't do it star 4 Staff Member Moderator

    Registered:
    Apr 15, 2019
    IC Bernael
    Location: One realm to another


    Standing, with his drink in hand, Bernael watched as Helenith took the few steps toward Lord Insipid. He could feel this needed, deserved to be a private moment for her so he turned slightly away and paid attention to the sky, the stars.

    As the stars winked out, Bernael heard a bell tone, then was wrapped in a Force meld, once again, with Renn and Helenith. This was the second time in as many days that he’d been thrust into a bond with them. ‘Even though it’s him, I’m getting tired of my mind being attached to others.’

    Then his old friend turned and pointed with the sceptre in his hands; with a scream space rent and daylight poured through the wound. Feeling the pressure upon him, Bernael approached to rent in space, seeing only the light against the darkness of where they were, for the moment. He could feel that the others were still where they had been standing, Renn because he was stubborn and Helenith because whatever drove her, in that moment, was not complete.

    “Go, you fools, Become the Dark in the Chaos, and impose our Will upon our Balance, Upon the Force.”

    Bernael moved cautiously through the portal, knowing the other two would follow. ‘One realm to another, time to see what and when he has sent us to.’

    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    IC: Renn Turon
    Location: Behind Bernael


    Feeling that Helenith was not in the mood for treats and happiness in that moment, Renn lowered his hand, returning the candy to the sack, which he tied off on the equipment belt at his waist. He could feel the emotions rolling off of her, couldn’t help but feel them. But he knew it was not his place in this moment to make her feel better, that she had to work through them.

    He watched as she moved over to the Lord then he turned to Bernael, who was, likewise, involved in his own thoughts, it seemed. He refused to stare at a sky that he was certain no longer held a single other being of his kind, ‘I knew it was possible, but am I truly the only one now?’ he thought, then shook his head at the morbid thought. ‘If so, then time to make the best of it.’

    He heard the chimes and saw the portal open. Bernael moved to it, cautious as ever, while Helenith stood with Lord Insipid, and he almost choked at the sorrow he felt there. And then she dove into the rent in space. He moved forward, seeing that the portal was not steady, that the pain in Lord Insipid prevented him from keeping it so.

    ‘Damn short people have it so easy in these things and then they dive into these things like they were a slip and slide.’ Renn thought as he ducked to follow Bernael and Helenith into the, still shrinking, portal. ‘I can’t even stand up without worrying that this thing is going to slice chunks off.’ The distance traveled wasn’t that far, but he could feel that time was warping, that they were slicing through it, headed to a time when the universe wasn’t in the process of dying.

    TAGS: @Sinrebirth, @darthhelinith
     
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  19. Sinrebirth

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

    Registered:
    Nov 15, 2004
    IC: Does It Matter What My Name Is Now?
    Dwartii, not far from a little planet called Nouane, Inner Rim

    On a dusty plain on a world swept by wind and dust, he stood. Some cataclysm millennia ago had ripped the atmosphere o the world asunder, and it hadn’t really recovered.

    But who had, since that Fated Day?

    The black cloaked man regarded his silver and gold Forcesaber hilt. He triggered it, the crimson blade bursting free. “It was better in black; but he made you bleed, didn’t he?” Snapping it off, he regarded his surroundings, looking at them as the wind cleared.

    Four oversized statutes, all made of bronzium and neuraniam, a completely impossible to penetrate-with-scans material. Collectors items, each of them; only twice in thirty five thousand years had anyone managed to assemble them all in one place.

    He regarded them each with some disdain; part of it was an affectation, but not all of it.

    Sistros, Faya, Yanjon, Braata,

    The four Sages of Dwartii.

    The Protector Masters.

    It was nearly time, wasn’t it?

    The End of Time, when the Master could see no further.

    After the Sith allowed Typhojem free.

    When the Twilight Wars began anew.

    TAG: @no-one

    Ostensible mentions to @HanSolo29, @Jerjerrod-Lennox, @QueenSabe7, @Mitth_Fisto.
     
  20. Sinrebirth

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

    Registered:
    Nov 15, 2004
    IC: Black Coat
    Dwartii plains, by the Twilight Graveyard, one hundred and sixty-odd years after the Battle of Yavin, in 160 ABY, during the End of Time

    As few minutes had passed, and he regarded the Forcesaber and checked anew, walking back with the Eye.

    The switch had interfered with the immediate successors to the Sages, but they perhaps they would figure out if it was Jin, N'Tael or the infamous 'No Name'. Behind the cowl of his coat, he grinned sardonically. Poor Sheel; poor Atreus; poor Sek'nos.

    Those shenanigans had informed the Last Class, and he could only shake his head as Vy'dnall, Aurrenna and Tarkin drew Nouane deeper and deeper into inevitable violence. Would young Palpatine and his coiffed, flame-red hair, stand against the intricacies of Jori Atreus and Ni'Korish?

    The little minx, Vergere, was having her way with matters, but there were no surprises there. There was unhappiness about one alternate world-line, let alone two; the one where Palpatine died in his office at the hands of Anakin and Mace; and the one where a great Contingency ensnared the galaxy after his death... Eleanor had her hands full with Vergere, no doubt, though who was to say what Zorn would do with the would-be Sith.

    Of course, Darth Caedus was in places where he shouldn't be... but Bernael was too, so there was only so much one could do or say about it. But then again, little Darth Insipid was collating all the irritating loose ends and getting a clearer idea of the board... Ike, Arek, the Sceptre, his little 'dream team', fresh from having triumphed at Kuat...


    As long as Plo did not interfere with Syren...

    The machinations of the Master, and his greater goal, they were all fragile, and far too many pieces were attempting their own plots and ploys through his game. If it was to be a true End, then his own role would need to be fulfilled.

    The sun of Dwartii completed its turn, and the shadow of the statue of Sistros reached for the nameless black coat. Excitement stirred in his chest, and he checked for the thousandth time that the Box was still with him.

    [​IMG]

    The Box that Feyna had made impossible to find once upon a time, in one world-line, but thankfully had not interfered with in another. Not yet, anyway. She was a wily one.

    It was still with him.

    Good.

    He regarded the four statues anew, now the shadow was touching his feet.

    The anointed time was here.

    In his hand was the Forcesaber, the golden and silver hilt evident in the sunlight.

    Sistros in front of him; Braata behind him; Yanjon and Faya to his left and right, of course.

    His eyes found Sistros, and the small hole in the head of the statue. Palpatine had concealed the Forcesaber within the statue, fortunately not interfering with the statues themselves. That would have been... unfortunate,to say the least.

    As the sunlight spread to touch the four statues, he was sure to tug his hood all the more snugly to protect his face from view.

    He mused on the words that had been chosen all those millennia ago to describe the war.

    The Twilight War.

    Twilight had the rather inevitable meaning of dusk and dawn. Those who walked towards light, and away from it. But, fundamentally, it was a war of Twilight, not a war between Light or Dark, like the relentless Jedi and Sith Wars that came to grip the galaxy.

    No.

    The Twilight Wars were wars between Lights.

    Some Lights heading to Dawn.

    Some Lights heading to Dusk.

    There was no Dark in the Twilight Wars.

    Not to start.

    The Dark had come afterwards, when the Light had been lost, or, with Anakin Skywalker, had grown indolent.

    It had been there, in the name given to the wars all those millennia ago.

    What a paradox.

    How could you make the Light fight itself?

    What genius could achieve such a goal?

    What goal could such a mastermind seek in pursuing that original war?

    As the cloaked man returned his gaze to Sistros, he saw the first cracks begin to form.

    A glance showed that all four of the statues were breaking open.

    At last, he whispered, releasing his sigh.

    But who would ultimately be released?

    That was the question that he now had.

    His lips curled and spoke, without regard.

    "I've been looking forward to this."

    TAG: No-One

    @HanSolo29, @QueenSabe7, @Mitth_Fisto, @Jerjerrod-Lennox

    @greyjedi125, @LordTroepfchen, @TheSilentInfluence, @darthbernael, @Imperial_Hammer, @TheAdmiral, @JediMasterAnne, @DarkLordoftheFins, @Darth_wanderguard, @Corellian_Outrider

    Mentioned all, but with no response required; as ever, your stories will roll out separately to the greater narrative, but it is there if you wish to imbibe upon it. The joy of these games is that all your stories are self-contained, and I enjoy them for it. But I do also enjoy handing you all great and terrible information about who is keeping an eye on things, and our Narrator has his place in things.

    This is merely a Merry Christmas gift to some of those that I intend to very much enjoy tagging in the New Year.

    Be curious, be intrigued, be concerned...

    All emotions are warranted.

    For the End of Time approaches, the Twilight Wars will touch us all.
     
    Last edited: Dec 25, 2019
  21. AgentViper007

    AgentViper007 Force Ghost star 7

    Registered:
    Mar 9, 2005
    OOC: A super awesome mega combo with the one, the only, @Sinrebirth ! :D

    IC: Black Coat
    Various; Millennia


    And so the end of Vydra came to pass.

    He had the moment with Joren, yes, where his True Name was uttered and he lost the Force, and indeed, his will and strength. He left, but the man never made it home to his family; he would be a tragic loss, unknown to anyone.

    That is the point we start at... it is not the ending, and, of course, there is a before that, too.

    As the Force recoiled and rippled, as Gods and monsters came to Nouane, Vydra would find himself, pained, heavy, and hard, at the edge of a nondescript building halfway between his home and where he and Joren had met.

    There was Darkness, pressing upon them all, but Vydra would no longer sense it...

    How did he feel, now?

    In one word: devastated.

    No friends. His best friend or former best friend deciding to strip him of the Force. Vale and Dunkeel would soon forget about him too. The traitor.

    No family. His mum and dad if they found out about what he was about to do, what he had done to his own sister Venezia. To strip her of her memory of gaining the Force and then trying to kill him.

    No apprentices or Master. The latter was dead and the former, well how could he go back to them and teach them whilst broken?. He now also had no Holocrons or Forcesaber, he was no longer a Protector.

    He didn't go home, he couldn't face his family, not maybe ever again. He was going to try and grab clothes, whatever he could find and leg it. Or find some of his old friends and get smashed off his face one last time. Maybe be with a woman just to let go.

    But here he was at this building, having no clue about what was going on in the city, with his former comrades. All he wanted to do was end it all.

    Just one more step…

    As his foot landed, a flash of blue light emerged, but he would be unable to move from that spot.

    The light traveled up his leg, crystallizing as it went, creeping up and spreading as he was consumed. The floor spread caught his other foot inevitably, and a second wave of crystallization reached up that leg too -

    In a moment it would reach his knee, and then waist -

    What the hell is this?!

    Vydra began to struggle. It was bad enough that he was now stuck and couldn't move, but some crystalline substance was now trying to cover him from head to toe.

    Was someone stopping him from taking the plunge? Unfortunately with no Force saber he couldn't hack at it nor try and remove it from the Force.

    Just let me go! he thought let me go ahead and do this….

    The crystallisation reached his chest, and then his neck -

    Vydra’s desire to go, to break out, to escape became a shout, a cry, an echo -

    No, he did not have the Force, not in a traditional sense - but he did have a connection that still existed -

    Just one.

    His sister - he could still feel his sister -

    She was crying, looking for him -

    For her brother -

    The crystal weighted his arms, bringing them to his sides as claustrophobia embraced his mouth -

    The crystallization was winning. It was spreading and spreading and there was no way to stop it. His heart felt like it wanted to break free from this prison, to release whatever was building in his chest. Something that wanted to be unleashed.

    But something began to resonate in his mind, something familiar and close. No hang on, not something but someone…..Venezia!

    He still had a connection to his sister and he could feel her pain, her sorrow, her desire to find him. But even if he reached out to her through their bond he didn't know whether she would reach him in time. Especially since this crystalline stuff seemed to be near his face now.

    His desire to let go faltered, perhaps he would live...for her. Perhaps to continue the Delomeux line. He would forever be known as Vydra the traitor, but maybe, just maybe he could let his true name...Yanjon mean something.

    Ven he thought through the bond, unfortunately with no Force sensitivity he couldn't project everything to her.

    I am so sorry for everything. For what I did to you, our family and my comrades. I have renounced my status as Protector Master and I wanted to end it all. But I didn't realise we still had a bond, that perhaps you were the only one who was there for me during my struggles and lessons. I will live for you my beautiful sister, and I will carry on. I don't know what's going to happen next but know that I love you and I always will.

    He closed his eyes as the crystalline stuff reached his mouth take care of Mum and Dad. Hopefully the end won't come….

    The crystallisation settled, and hardened, and it was over.

    [​IMG]

    Yanjon was all that remained.

    Or was it?

    Vydra’s last moment; his reaching - his voice - it echoed out as if his Will was beyond that of his Force and body. He would find himself stretched, cut-off from his origin, free-floating until -

    He was incorporeal, and translucent, beside Venezia, who was huddled in her parents arms as they looked out the window of their home, as chaos and carnage reined in the distance -

    As a pyramid emerged from the sky, as a Winged Goddess and Fanged God descended and brawled across the City building-tops -

    As the clouds filled with black and lightning and swallowed the normally shining sky -

    Vydra felt himself being swallowed by the crystalline stuff, and then something happened, it felt like he was floating on air like he was weightless and could just sink into its warmth. But he also felt like he was being pulled from something, like he was literally floating…

    When he opened his eyes again he found he was back home and he smiled. He'd done it! He was about to give himself a pinch to check when he saw he was translucent. He was still wearing the same clothes but he looked like...a ghost.

    Am I actually dead? Is this my punishment for trying to end it all? Or is this a new test?. To perhaps live on in this form so my body can return again someday? He shook his head, this was literally an out of body experience.

    His family were huddled together and Vydra could see why now outside the window. Grotesque creatures fighting. A pyramid arriving. The sky black as ink and stormy. The end had truly come.

    The Twilight Wars had begun. This is what happens if you failed Vydra he thought this is on you. And he couldn't comfort his family, they would think he was actually dead, haunting them until the end.

    I am sorry he thought at them looking at his family with an expression full of sorrow. This is my mess and I don't know how to clean this up. I can't help my comrades now but maybe perhaps I could still save the future…for you all.

    But what could he do? He floated forward to go out, he had to try something, anything…

    That was the terrible thing of it all. Venezia and his family couldn’t hear Vydra; he was merely an echo of himself, connected merely by their bond. Vydra would be able to sense that his connection wasn’t strong enough to his parents to keep him tethered - indeed it was his sister's Force sensitivity that kept him alive.

    The entire world whited out for a moment, and there was a tide of screams that encompassed Nouane; for a brief moment Vydra hovered above a scorched skeleton - a trio of such forms holding each other - and then he would see where Nouane City had been standing was instead a barren area where a quartet of sceptres now stood -

    And then there was another flash and everything was back, with Venezia and his parents simply going about their day, but worriedly so -

    “Vydra has been missing for the whole day. This isn’t like him,” his mother said.

    His father put down his comlink, clearly finishing a call. “The other Protector Masters and all the officers assigned to them are missing too... apart from one, who is apparently in the Lord and Ladies personal medical centre.”

    Venezia looked hopeful. “We should see if we can speak to him?”

    “I doubt they’ll let us, Ven,” his father said, gently.

    “We can’t just give up on this! I need to do something!” Ven burst into tears and ran to her room - with Vydra dragged along.

    Vydra had a terrible feeling something was wrong. His family couldn't hear him at all and he felt connected to only one person...his sister. Venezia may have been stripped of her memories of being consumed by a dark entity, but she was still Force sensitive. And she was keeping him alive.

    He was essentially linked to her alone. Could he talk to her? She hadn't heard his thoughts to his family so maybe his thoughts were his and his alone.

    This is my punishment is it? His thoughts turned sad, my price for staying alive is that I stay alone in this ghost form. Unable to touch anyone, love anyone, feel anyone again. My penance for failure.

    But then an image appeared, Nouane destroyed, his family incinerated, four sceptres standing in the wasteland. Memorials to the fallen? To the remaining four Protectors? Vydra felt sick, was he seeing a vision? Was it his own mind or what the dark entity had shown Venezia? It looked bloody awful either way.

    All of a sudden as it appeared it disappeared, and the Delomeux family was back. And they were talking about a 'him' being in the medical centre. That the Protectors and the law enforcement officers had gone missing.

    Had someone gotten injured and survived the grotesque creatures attack? It either had to be Dunkeel, Joren, maybe the Shadow. Or Erwen. There was still hope yet if at least someone had survived.

    But Venezia was distraught over him being missing and he was dragged along behind her as she disappeared upstairs. Did that mean he was going to follow her around for the rest of his life. Even if she found a man and….oh God don't even think about that. But it seemed if she died he would go too. And his body would be left without a soul.

    I don't even know if I can do anything he thought sadly as he watched Venezia cry in her room. He lay down behind her and wrapped his arms around her. She may not sense him or feel him or even see him, but at least it would make him feel better. She would move on without her big brother but at least he could try and protect her in spirit.

    Yanjon lives on. He thought I'm going to be here for Ven, I will protect her as best I can. Hopefully one day i'll return to my body and live my life. Until then I guess I'm a Protector again. But this time for my sister.

    He kept his arms around her making sure she felt safe at least.

    For a time, Vydra could hold onto that memory... but not for long. As if he was losing consciousness, he faded to black, leaving a calmed Venezia behind -

    One Year Later, during Epitaph Between

    And then a flash, and Venezia was much older, with an unfamiliar man sitting beside her at the foot of the bed. She looked exhausted, but happy, peering down at the bundle swaddled in her arms. It was a boy; a baby boy, and as she looked back from her partner to the baby, she spoke softly. "My little Vydra."

    She'd named her firstborn after her missing - long presumed dead - brother.

    Nouane was nothing more than what it had always been, as if no catastrophe and disaster had consumed it. For a moment, the hospital was all that Vydra would be able to see, but he was almost rejuvenated by him being remembered, and a legacy resurrected and reborn; he was not forgotten, and this child would bear his name and perpetuate him, after a fashion. As the moment continued, he would be able to wander around the room.

    Tears trickled down Venezia's cheeks, and the man's arms drew them all together into his warmth.

    Vydra felt himself slipping away and he wondered if this was finally it. Whether he would be stuck in his cocoon or whether he would just fade away. Not to become one with the Force but just...melt away. He held on for as long as he could before giving into the darkness….

    And then he awoke again and with joy and a little bit of sorrow he saw that Venezia was older and now had a partner. He was so glad that she had found love and happiness. In all that time he had disappeared, Nouane hadn't turned into ashes, there were no grotesque creatures battling for supremacy. And as Venezia spoke Vydra's heart burst with happiness, she had named her son after him!. Vydra felt reborn like he was alive once again and still thirty six years young.

    He smiled gone but never forgotten. He felt the warmth and love coming from them all and he shared it with his sister. And he found he could move freely around the room which pleased him as he moved around to take a look at his nephew.

    Yep he's definitely got the Delomuex looks he thought with a chuckle. He's going to be one hell of a handsome boy, maybe he'll have the same penchant for the ladies….

    Vydra felt confident the line would live on in his stead, if he never came back then at least Venezia would at least keep the Delomeux bloodline flowing. And for once in a long while he felt genuinely happy. There was love everywhere and even if he wasn't there in body he was there in spirit.

    Everything will be fine he thought placing his hand on Venezia's shoulder and smiling down at the three the future is assured and I will protect you all.

    Always…


    It was a touching moment, but it was clear that Nouane had passed through its dramas in peace, and not with any long-lasting effects. The shadows would draw upon Vydra again, and lighten, when his namesake had their firstborn. For a few minutes, and then a few hours, he could exist again, and again.

    Nouane did change, as the moments flew by. Visitors came from other worlds, some good, some bad. He was able to stay for longer, and longer, and so much time passed before the next moment -

    Years before Turning Point - the Betrayal of Darth Revan

    There were screams, and fire, and debris, and this time a woman who had Venezia's eyes was clutching a newborn as she tried to edge herself behind an upturned bed. Blasterfire echoed in the distance, and two warriors in armour marched onto the floor, opening fire on medics and droids.

    [​IMG]

    Vydra began to live each moment as it came, watching his son grow into a handsome young man like he thought he would and then he had a child too. As time passed, through ten, twenty, thirty, forty years and even more Vydra watched his family grow which always brightened his heart. He sadly had to aslo watch people come and go, first his sister which drilled a hole straight through his heart, his last link to the past and the family he had left behind gone along with his parents.

    At that point he thought he would die too and join her but he didn't. He continued on watching over the Delomeux line, hoping that it would never fade.

    Looking at visitors coming and going also brought things into perspective, how much he was missing in life. He had of course had his life stopped at thirty six so he still had some of his life ahead of him. But was there also with some of the visitors a roguish streak developing within the line? Would have to keep an eye on that.

    Nouane began to modernise and change hopefully as his family had wished for the better. Vydra junior eventually passed away his namesake moving on into hopefully a better place where the rest of the Delomeux ancestors were waiting. But he himself was feeling stronger and stronger, being able to stay in moments longer and longer and feeling like his old strength was returning and that he was back to nearly his old self.

    Would he eventually be able to stay for days? Months even? Well in this ghostly form Vydra doubted it. He also was beginning to wonder what had become of his body and the cocoon it was stationed in.

    But when he came back this time, his heir and the woman who looked astonishingly like his sister were in a lot of trouble. He spotted two warriors killing anyone in their path and he wondered whether it had anything to do with the woman and the baby. He may not have the Force but he could do something at least or try to.

    As he saw them he gathered his strength, it would probably cost him but to protect them he would do anything. Even maybe sacrifice his presence to keep the line running. He looked at the two armoured warriors and with a snarl that was feral even for him he immediately tried to force his Will on the warriors to try and either deflect their bolts with a shield or at least smash the warriors into the wall.

    It meant he would probably touch the darker part of himself and he would regret it instantly but these people needed protecting.

    YOU WILL NOT TOUCH THEM.

    The Force push rammed the Mandalorians to the wall, and they dropped into unconsciousness from the attack, resulting in a gasp from the woman - who was looking at him. "Who are you?"

    There was a surge within Vydra, but were he to regard his arms he would see them as translucent. Not blue limned like a Force Ghost, or coloured red like a Sith spirit, but simply see-through. The Force was with him, but he was burning through it; he could feel that too.

    There was another surge - this time within the Force, and a cacophony of explosions, shouts, and blaster fire sounded out throughout the area. The air was suddenly full of sleek Republic designs, facing a motley array of Mandalorian raiders. Where he Pascale Rouser, he would recognise most of the designs as from the Mandalorian Wars -

    The building shook, and the woman screamed in-spite of herself, holding her child close, who began to wail. "Help us!"

    Vydra turned back to the woman with a smile "Let's just say I have a link to your past and your future"

    He felt though that the Force was back with him, that his connection to the current had been established. So what Joren had done could be undone again supposedly he mused if the Force decided he needed to have it back. But there was a problem.

    Where before he had a line lining his white shirt it had disappeared. He was literally becoming translucent. And the Force seemed to be burning through him.

    So perhaps this is the time where I pass on he thought I have seen so many things with my legacy, perhaps the Force wishes me to pass on, to know that once I am done here I can rest in peace.

    He felt and saw explosions, blasterfire, sleek designs against hardened armour. And this Venezia lookalike and her child were right in the middle of it and trapped. He could use the Force and perish or he could do nothing and watch them die.

    Not today he thought, narrowing his eyes. He took a deep breath and blew it out.

    Well Vydra, might as well go out with a bang….

    Vydra dug inward as deep as he could go drawing his remaining strength taking deep breaths and closing his eyes. The Force felt like an inferno but he was determined to do this. To make sure they survived.

    With one hand behind him he tried to make a shield just in case a stray shot got through. With the other he tried to shove all the soldiers out of the way so the woman and her child could escape.

    Vydra's power fizzled - the Mandalorians approaching tripped, but didn't go flying - indeed, the transparency increased, and he would feel the edge of his vision blacken. The woman began to cry, and the Mandalorians swiftly recovered, pointing their weapons at both Vydra and his descendant.

    There was a snap-hiss, and a blade cut through the neck of one Mandalorian, and the other two were hurled off to the side. Electricity took them, and they stiffened and collapsed. A Jedi swept into the room, looking at the woman, and then looked back at Vydra.

    He hefted his blade.

    [​IMG]

    "Only a Sith can retain their form after death."

    His voice was muffled, but his intent clear.

    He’d failed.

    Vydra looked on in despair as the warriors in front of him basically tripped and he felt his strength failing even more. His vision was beginning to fade and he knew it wouldn't be long until he was one with the Force rejoining his body and sinking into oblivion. And the last thing he would do was watch two family members die, not naturally but butchered.

    There was a familiar sound of a weapon being activated: a purple blade which bisected one of the warriors. A lightsaber? Vydra thought. He had only seen them before he took on his job of finding the new students millennia ago it seemed.

    The rest of them seemed to collapse with the warrior wielding the blade approaching. He had a funny kind of helmet and funny looking robes too.

    “I’ve heard vague mentions of these Sith and what the future could be with them. But I am no Sith. I can assure you, I don’t understand what is happening myself. All I know is I have floated for centuries watching my bloodline and I do not intend to see them destroyed today. Plus I don’t think i’m dead, well not yet anyway.”

    He tried to stand tall although it was difficult with the Force burning through him “My name is Vydra Delomeux, also known as Yanjon. I am a former Protector Master of Nouane, forced into exile by what I was possibly about to do. But I am here to ensure that my heir survives and that the future of the Light is secure. Because I am a defender of the Light and I shall continue to protect it until I melt away into the Force”

    The Jedi stood taller, not deactivating his blade, but regarding Vydra. “I am Revan. I shall reclaim the territory lost to the Mandalorian horde, and avenge Cathar and Socorro and Eres III. I am revenge; revanchism incarnate.” His voice was raised, and then he dropped it.

    “I recognise Yanjon from my studies of the ancient Sith,” he again brandished his blade. “If what you say is true; your teachings and words founded the Republic, twenty-one millennia ago. Before the Sith were an Empire; before the Jedi left Tython for Ossus.” He paused, for blasterfire echoed in the distance. “If you are a Protector as you say; why do you linger now? What mystery do you represent; what destiny do you covet, Yanjon?”

    Clearly, now he spoke his true name, it had power over Vydra but this Revan sought understanding of his role, and their seeming destined crossover.

    But the edges of Vydra’s vision were losing to darkness, and it was clear, as strong as he had became, today much of his recovered strength had been spent. Was he to need another twenty-odd millennia to be this corporeal again?

    Wait, what?

    This was news to Vydra. He knew that he had been passing through time but had it really been millenia long? Were the other Protectors going through the same thing, watching their families grow as they passed through time?

    Of course he had seen glimpses of the future during his original lessons but was he now actually watching history happen as his bloodline continued?

    Have I helped shape the Republic? I disappeared into exile before the job was done originally. And did we not protect the Light but the dark?

    Vydra knew he didn't have much time judging by the way his vision was going and the way his strength was failing. His form was starting to melt away.

    "I do not know what mystery that I represent and the only destiny I wish to see is the continuation of my bloodline, my family's legacy. I don't know what year it is, only that I have remained in this form for a while watching time pass. And I know that in protecting my heir today that my time is coming to a close".

    "All I know is that I was on Nouane about to end my life but I was cocooned in a crystalline substance. The next minute I wake up and I'm in this form" he indicated himself.

    "I saw glimpses of the future, Jedi, Sith, battles but was never sure about whether they were true or not. So Revan, warrior of whatever it is you belong to. I am not a Sith, I am not a dark warrior. I'm just a librarian that chose the path of a Protector, to defend not attack. To protect and to serve. I was given a task that would mark me as a traitor and I was about to choose exile when I realised I could not live anymore as I had betrayed my family and comrades. But I was given another chance to see my bloodline continue and I do not intend to waste it. I would protect them with my life, my spirit"

    Vydra felt himself slipping away, the darkness of oblivion was calling…

    Revan watched him fade. “I too am a Protector, Yanjon.” His voice dipped and he regarded through the Force woman and her child; the space between them - the resonance between them - it had created the echo which had given shape to Vydra, and indeed it was not the only echo that could exist.

    The Jedi Knight could sense this, and could see in that legacy a malleability that could undo the essence of a moment, could rewrite a destiny. It tempted him, and spoke to him of terrible wounds in the Force that created with echoes.

    “A Dark Protector...” Revan said, naming his flagship in the years to come, as Vydra faded away.

    It would be some time before he came to next, and he would again recognise Nouane, but a complex built in a none-too-dissimilar way to the old Clock-Tower. There were corridors, but the twists and turns to the room led only to the a room full of books in all manner of disorder and chaos - a small room with a desk, and a chessboard, and four statues in either room...

    And above it a shelf and the Master’s Forcesaber, in gold and silver, almost peering down upon the room.

    “Why hello, Yanjon.”

    The Master of Masters stood behind him, arms tucked behind his back, cowled expression hidden away.

    The air stirred, but nothing else came of it. He was about as translucent as he had been before, when he met Revan -

    Revan was a Protector too? Was he a new band of them in this time, whenever this was? But Vydra didn't have time to think about anything else, all he heard as he slipped into the black was Dark Protector….

    What the he-

    Just before the Last Epitaph

    When he woke back up again he was now in a different building but in some ways it looked a little bit like the old Clock Tower. Was he back on Nouane again? What year was it now? He seemed to be passing through the ages, and if he ever did return in his body he would have to chronicle all of it.

    Although people would just think i'm bonkers if they ever did read it…

    He decided to take a look around and walked (or floated really) along the corridors which were so windy that one point he thought he had gotten lost. But eventually he found a room. He had to shake his head at the disorderly book stacking. But there were four statues, and the Forcesaber...gold and silver. Why did that look familiar…

    And then a familiar voice. The Master! But what the hell was he doing here?

    Vydra spun around in anger, his face pure fury. He clenched his fists but as he looked down he was translucent as he was before. Oh great, don't have much time again…

    "You" he hissed "We felt you die, we thought you were dead. Turns out here you are alive and well. Or are you like me? Floating through time and space?".

    He shook his head "The Truths you gave me forced me to betray my comrades, lose my best friend and he stripped me of the Force. I chose exile and wanted to end it all, were it not for my sister. So here I am separated from my body which is who knows where and experiencing history moving along"

    He folded his arms "I would so love to see how you twist and turn your way out of this one".

    The Master placed a hand on his chest. “I’m afraid that I didn’t ask you to keep your Truth’s secret... just your names. Nor did I ask Sistros - sorry, Joren - to take your name in vain. The most I did was cast out the darkness in Braata - sorry, Vale - and allowed Faya to work out your names in his own time.”

    He shrugged. “My error was choosing those with one foot in the real world, and one foot in the world of the Force. It was impossible for those of you who were to separate what was being lost for what was being gained.”

    The Master sounded apologetic, and sincere. “But you’ve seen it, in snippets, no doubt, as you’re not... well, not here, or there... but I’m sure the thirty five millennia of war between light and dark and the trillions dead has validated at least some of my view that it has to stop.”

    “To be stopped; that the End of Time is inevitable.”

    "Oh really," Vydra said, his voice still a furious growl "Then we all failed right? You've won, you got your wish. We argued amongst ourselves and nearly got split up. Actually I split off because I couldn't do your task, it was too much for me. And I will always now be known as the traitor, the betrayer because of secretly finding some of the apprentices.I gained nothing but lost it all, I don't know about the others."

    He folded his arms ``All I have seen during my travels through time is the life and death of my bloodline, nothing else, war, peace I have never seen anything I saw from what you showed us. The last thing I saw was my hier possibly being killed by some chaps in weird armour but killed themselves by some Jedi chap called Revan. He said I helped shape the Republic, that only a Sith could be in this form. He also called me a Dark Protector…." He let that hang in the air.

    “Ah yes, Revan. That meeting with you put him on my trail, so I gave his apprentice Malak a hand, because why not. He was in the Holocron of Prophecy, but I didn’t exactly give you time to sit down with it for years and study it did I?”

    He chuckled slightly. “How can you be a traitor if you were true to yourself, my old friend?”

    The Master clapped slightly. “Your heir lived, and after that point Nouane was welcomed into the galactic community. It wasn’t that easy to keep track of you all after that point. Especially when the surnames changed, and I wasn’t entirely sure which child you’d ended up attached to.”

    “And the End of Time nearly happened a few times which complicated keeping an eye on you and everything else,” the Master said, shrugging. “But every-time Chaos escaped, God’s intervened. Very... good timing, no?”

    No answers as usual, just more questions he thought.

    "No you didn't, everything happened so fast that I could never study what it contained. I only had our lessons and what my Holocron had told me. I had hoped that maybe, just maybe the End of Time could be averted altogether but it seems it has as you say happened a few times. Perhaps I should thank these God's in person if I meet one. I don't know what has happened since I woke up here."

    He raised an eyebrow "So am I the only one in this form? Since you've been keeping an eye on me alone or did the others end up like me? Watching our heirs grow through time, our legacies."

    "I don't know who my heir is here, not yet anyway. But how could I be true to myself if I am stuck in this form? How can I help because whenever I use the Force my strength and form diminish?. Why was I true to myself when I betrayed my comrades and was about to open the World Between Worlds as part of my job?. Which was expressly forbidden!".

    The Master held up his hands. "A lot of it was out of my hands."

    "I didn't tell you to open the World Between Worlds. If you turned against my teachings, that's your business - and good for you! Why listen to me as if I'm a God!" He shrugged. "I didn't tell you to betray your comrades, either. I simply asked you, as my former apprentice, to make sure there was a back-up class in-case it went wrong."

    He stepped to Vydra, hands out. "And it did! Like the Holocrons of Prophecy said, the Twilight Wars started! What was I supposed to do? Let it happen? Let everyone on Nouane die, as they were supposed to, when Abeloth turns up?"

    He sighed. "I do know who your heir is here, actually. If I give you some Force energy, I can send you on your way, if I could borrow one thing?" The Master's voice was soft, but hopeful.

    The Master hadn't answered his question regarding whether he was the only one in this form, nor whether the others had heirs. It would have been interesting to see who had made it after the Twilight Wars (he had never forgotten that his family had mentioned someone was in a medical centre) the Master just continued to ramble on about the Twilight Wars, how someone called Abeloth had popped up and maybe tried to kill everyone but it seemed she maybe has not succeeded.

    Although it seemed the second class had continued on without him which did please him a little bit. He had found three of them and of course he hadn't known what had happened to them. Perhaps they had heirs too.

    Vydra sighed “I supposed there was a catch, but I don’t think I have anything for you to borrow. My Forcesaber has gone, so have the Holocrons of Heresy and Prophecy and I haven't got much of the Force at the moment because it seems to drain me quite a bit” he spread his arms wide “But enlighten me, what can I give to you in order to see who is my heir?”

    "Your face," the Master said, and his hand lifted, and in it fell a translucent mask that matched Vydra's. A neat Force trick. "My final class is about to commence, thirty-five thousand years after the first. Here, I shall choose my traitor, the one with the red-flame, you see."

    "So it strikes me as appropriate to have the face of the self-appointed traitor to the first class of Protectors..." The Master draped the face upon his, and dropped his hood; he looked just like Vydra, and smiled with his face. "Ah, how nice to have form for a few weeks. This class will need some attention, so it's best I approach them with a friendly and naive face, don't you think?"

    The Master was gloating, almost. Almost.

    He raised a gloved hand, and Vydra would feel the Force gathering within the palm. "Go echo somewhere else."

    With a push, Vydra would feel himself go -

    Vydra wanted to punch the Master in the face. The Master who now exactly looked like him. And all that gloating….

    It seems my Master has a nasty streak. No protector of the Light would do such things and then celebrate as if he had won. The traitor with the red flame, never heard of them but I hope that if they were chosen the same way I was that you would decide not to do it. Because it may give you pain and suffering but I would rather that than betray all that I am…

    He felt himself going again, he was moving on to the next chapter of his wanderings but he couldn't help but sneer at his former Master.

    See you in Hell…


    During the events of Revenge of the Sith


    There was a moment of dislocation, and then slam, Vydra tripped over a debonair man that could only be described as both rakish and a rogue. The man wouldn't see him, of course, but Vydra would have a moment of extreme double vision. They were aboard a yacht, the ship paused in orbit above a distant world. The HoloNet was on, and the man was following the report intently.

    The man spoke, surprised, in two different sentences.

    "I can't believe the Jedi tried to overthrow the Senate," said Pascale Rouser.

    [​IMG]

    "I can't believe that Chancellor Palpatine was behind the Clone Wars," he said, again, but watching the self-same broadcast, but with a different result.

    As Vydra reappeared he instantly fell over someone luckily for him he wasn't back in his body yet and still in his ghostly form. But as he looked he thought he was seeing things, whether his travels were now affecting his mind, his spirit….it was like he was back in his youth after having a particularly bad drinking binge.

    The man in front of him or men, looked smartly dressed. Handsome yet had a roguish aif about him. His eyes were blue like his, but the looks seemed familiar. Whomever he was had Venezia's features, and Vydra's eyes. Knowledgeable and the looks to charm the pants off any woman he wished. The ship they were on looked smart as well, must have cost an arm and a leg.

    He had to smile a little at that, maybe this chap is my heir, the Delomeux line seems to have kept the brains and the looks. Venezia would be proud…

    But it seemed that this man was speaking double, one saying something about someone called Palpatine starting the Clone Wars, the other about the Jedi overthrowing the Senate. Was he experiencing two versions of the same event?. Was this the Master's doing after his last class?

    What the hell is going on he thought his face looking rather confused and feeling like he was getting a headache…

    Meanwhile the first Pascale spoke again shaking his head "Why would the Jedi do such a thing? I mean from what I have seen they always seemed good. Did some of them turn bad or rogue?" He shook his head again "Such needless violence. Now Palpatine will rule with no-one to challenge him. I think the underworld will be the safest place to be right now. But the opportunities to profit from this could be massive…"

    Then the second Pascale spoke up "So the Clone Wars were orchestrated by a man who obviously valued death and destruction more than anything else. A pointless war and yet I have profited handsomely from it. The Confederacy is still going I suppose so I could still sell to them."

    "And a Jedi rebellion as well, who knew." He chuckled "Well I wonder what will happen next. Mas Amedda taking over, an Empire forming and politicians squabbling like normal" he snorted "The underworld will love this…"

    Meanwhile Vydra was watching on, his heirs were part of the underworld? What had they become?

    But now, because there were two heirs, his Force essence had doubled, and his echo became more powerful than not. The two of them split off, and while he wasn't yet corporeal enough to be seen as he had during the Mandalorian Wars...

    ... he was conscious, and nineteen years passed.


    During Twilight of the Force, or, A New Hope


    There was a day when Pascale Rouser took a job, a seemingly innocuous one that involved several criminal cartels trying to break an Imperial blockade at Mimban, right until the point they crossed the threshold into a Temple, and Vydra would feel something dark and Old....

    ... and then, as Pascale was taken and the space above him was filled with that of another entity.

    It had tentacles for a beard, monstrous wings, and claws for hands...

    ... and so too did Pascale, all of a sudden.

    The monster hadn't noticed Vydra as it puppetted Rouser, him slashing down a Wookiee, and fighting a mercenary and smuggler by the name of Han Solo - all the while trying to reach the body of a Jedi Padawan -

    .... while the other Pascale Rouser was taking small-time jobs in the Outer Rim, in a galaxy where the Empire ruled the galaxy in all, where the Jedi were shattered, and a rebellion raged. His fate was much smaller, for the time - compared to the trauma that the other Pascale was even now going through.

    It felt like a surreal experience, watching his two heirs both the same person mind you, go off and do whatever they were destined to do.

    As Vydra woke up again he felt whatever it was that he had unleashed from himself many moons ago become magnified. He wasn't yet back to what he was but he felt he was getting there. And he felt more powerful than he had been, both his heirs also felt powerful, like he had passed to them a bit of himself, not like the rest of them.

    But it still felt odd that his heirs were both rogues, he imagined them possibly wielding lightsabers or maybe just living the quiet life. These two seemed to be enjoying the life they led which was decidedly a little bit shady.

    He watched as the first Pascale wandered through the galaxy taking odd jobs and discovering new treasures. And then selling them off to whomever hired them, some of which looked a bit like criminals.

    But this Pascale was enjoying himself immensely. Drink and women aplenty and he was living life to the full. Nothing much was happening there….

    But the second Pascale….well he was being enveloped by a monster. A dark monster that he had unleashed because he had chosen poorly, doing battle with those he had arrived at a temple with, his very soul crushed nearly to oblivion. And Vydra couldn't help him for the darkness and the pain had rendered him speechless and nearly doubled over himself.

    But he could feel his heir still inside there not willing to give up. Pascale himself had worried that soon he would be gone forever, a dark and dangerous murderer. And Vydra knew that the man was dying, that the spirit was consuming his body and soon his soul, the spirit was darkness incarnate and old probably way older than Vydra himself.

    And so he tried to nudge his heir to not give in, to try and live if possible. Pascale responded pushing back against the monster….

    But Vydra sensed that it might not be enough to save his heir's body….

    For everyone else involved, Pascale miraculously turned the tide, with the help of what he began to know as his Echo. There were trials and tribulations, and Vydra would see his other self perform all manner of act and decision, including becoming Dark Underlord of Black Sun and planning to betray the galaxy to the Separatists -

    On the Ultimate Weapon, Vydra was reunited with the statue of Yanjon, and indeed the statues of the other three Protectors - all collected by the Dark Lord of the Sith, Mas Amedda, known as Darth Wyyrlok.

    Rouser was poised to flee, but Vydra would feel a connection between himself and the statue, and, of course still with Rouser. He could follow either on their journey, and he knew his essence would continue to keep Rouser alive, though the Rouser currently playboying across the Outer Rim was less relevant for the time being.

    To Ach-To, Vydra could go, or perhaps he could follow his statue to Mandlore -

    The first Rouser was still enjoying himself, still selling his wares to unscrupulous clients, to people in smart looking uniforms, and others in uniforms not so smart. Vydra still kept one eye on him but nothing was still happening but Vydra was content that at least this heir was doing well, even if he was a rogue.

    Still more drinking and women and Vydra had to chuckle, this definitely reminded him of his younger days.

    The second Rouser however had been successful in repelling the beast...only not. Vydra felt part of the darkness reside in his heir and he felt sick. He wasn't in time….the other Rouser wouldn't know it but in fact he had died and his soul was being kept alive by Vydra and the darkness itself.

    Vydra himself felt sadness overcome him as he watched the second Rouser escape the temple, come into contact with someone called the Father, strip the young woman with the lightsaber of her memory and then escape the planet. And Vydra felt his heir going darker becoming Underlord of some organisation called Black Sun…

    What are you doing?! He was trying to reach his heir but the darkness seemed to be winning at present. More followed, another planet his heir losing the darkness before regaining it again. Darkness everywhere, a woman disabling his heirs yacht and trying to kill him…

    Pascale of course would feel not only the darkness but Vydra joining in too. He'd already seen his heir die in body but he wasn't going to see his spirit go just yet. The yacht was destroyed and Vydra acted again, Pascale feeling himself being protected once again.

    A trip to a moon-like machine and more darkness and Vydra became worried that the darkness was winning in whatever time this was. And as Pascale chatted with this Dark Lord and plotted his escape (after sadly learning himself he was now dead and yet alive) and after unleashing whatever Vydra had given him to stay alive ( the beast was pulled out) Vydra was drawn to a statue in the room….a familiar resonance he felt drawn to….he didn't with the other statues only that one. But he began to wonder…

    Is my body in that statue? Are the others in there? And why am I one one of those? Why am I a statue, I didn't do anything that warrants having something built after me….

    Vydra wanted to be reunited with his body….but he wanted to continue to watch both of his heirs and see where their destinies lay. He owed Venezia that much at least even though he felt devastated that one of her descendents was lost to the dark.

    Rouser eventually escaped this time with only what Vydra had given to him. And Vydra felt Rouser's despair as his yacht was damaged. Vydra knew where he had to go. A planet was calling him with rolling seas and lush green islands. A temple, strong in the Force...but also more darkness……

    Vydra closed his eyes and directed his heir on where to go. Rouser obeyed and managed to change the coordinates in time.

    And Vydra was along for the ride….

    On Ach-To, we all know what happened. Rouser faced a twisted familiar of the Son, and the Daughter's familiar was killed - Ananke slaughtered Ahsoka Tano, and Arek and Lyz Grauls - but during the latter, Vydra's spiritual heir would have caught the voice of the Master -

    His Master, through a mirror?

    In a dark cave?

    There was a resonance, and the violence on Ach-To was continuing to batter at Vydra as if a hammer -

    The dark side was very strong in this heir's life and time.

    It looked like Vydra was only now watching the second Rouser, his other heir seemingly fine at the moment. Vydra once again lent his strength as Rouser got in a rather nasty fight with someone called the Son, apparently a relative of the beast that had consumed his heir's body.

    And Vydra felt the darkness coming off it, what it had transformed into or consumed. And he wanted to beat it, to let at least his heir live for a while longer. And he had someone with him with a lightsaber, a Jedi?

    The fight didn't last long however as darkness seemed to consume everything around the planet and Vydra. He nearly sank to his knees with the pain not just from the planet and the battles he could feel were going on but from what his heir was sensing too.

    It was nearly ripping Vydra apart but he was trying to stand firm to hold his heir together while this was going on. But I can't hold on for much longer…

    Rouser and the Jedi were then thrust into a dark cave (Rouser falling down into the water, Vydra floating down more serenely) as they then faced a mirror. He felt the darkness coming off one woman standing there, two dead bodies and another man who was filled with pure rage…..

    Vydra nearly collapsed again it was all becoming too much for even his ghostly body to take. So much murderous intent, so much violence, he joined his heirs displeasure at it all. But then a familiar voice spoke up behind the mirror, his Masters and Vydra wanted to snarl at the visage.

    And yet again the Master spoke riddles nonsense and Vydra shared his heirs confusion and skepticism. What the hell was he talking about? Moving people round? Traitor? Heretic?

    Something about being scattered in time and needing a key. Something about wiping someone's memory, his heir being allowed to stay but elsewhere he was harder to work with and the woman being in another timeline…

    But something clicked for Vydra as the Master spoke about Palpatine being dead, and he remembered what he had seen before you did this he thought with a growl towards his former Master you played around with time and people including my heir so you could probably run a little experiment. And all it has been is darkness everywhere, even my heir was consumed by it. And now I don't know how much longer he will live…

    You truly are a disgrace. To burn the light away so much…..

    The man with rage in his heart and the dark woman battled over a dagger, the Master tried to stop them but there was a white flash...and Vydra wondered what was going to happen next.

    The white faded, and everyone was unconscious; his heir, the murderess and the others.

    The Master had clearly stepped through the mirror and was humming to himself as he dug them free, tended to their lesser wounds, and generally carried on with his life. "I know you're there, Vydra."

    He was putting them back together, slowly but surely. "I'm sure you have some views on what is happening in this timeline."

    Vydra still had his double-sight, and knew that his other half had just heard of the destruction of the Death Star at the Battle of Yavin, and the Rebellion was in full swing.

    The first Rouser was watching events on screen regarding the destruction of something called the Death Star which looked strangely like the moon like station he had been on with the second Rouser. "My, my this is interesting" the first Rouser said "So the Rebellion has it's first big victory. Perhaps it's time to give these ladies and gents some much needed presents…"

    Meanwhile his other heir had fallen unconscious along with the others. The Master humming to himself cheerfully as if what had just happened was no big bother and it was just all part of the plan. He tended to them all and Vydra stiffened as the Master touched his heir.

    "Oh I do Master" he said stepping forward and standing next to his heirs body ""So you've moved the pieces around just to have a little bit of fun? To see whether you could run an experiment to see how it all panned out so you could do it to other timelines?".

    Vydra shook his head "The darkness is all powerful here, the light has nearly been extinguished. And you watched it all and let it play out and did nothing to stop it"

    He pointed to his heir "My heir here is dead in body but not in spirit. All because a Sith God chose him to be his vessel. My line is potentially about to end here, I do not know when but it will be soon. Soon Yanjon's legacy will be gone, whether the others will end in a similar fate I do not know"

    "But I suppose my main question is why you chose this timeline to play about with people's lives".

    The Master wagged a finger. "Firstly, your legacy won't be gone, but you'll likely find yourself freed. I didn't really expect Typhojem to have anchored himself to that crystal, but, well, more you know. I'll be sure to have that dealt with."

    He sorted the fallen bodies into more comfortable positions. "I didn't actually change things here. I suspect one of my students did. He (or she) became self-aware that I was trying to reset the board, and well, they made this new board as an experiment, before their big play."

    He looked at Ananke's form. "And yes, I moved some people around, a couple of their families too, but only because I needed the Protectors to stop what's happened here. Even then, I cannot track down Faya's descendants. Something happened between him and Darkness, but I do not know what..."

    The Master huffed. "And that's even before I pick up what happened to Sistros' Shadow." His eyes rolled. "Deary me. What a mess he became." He looked back at Vydra. "Imagine that a Darkness became aware of other realities, and figured out how to do something about it. You think it's bad here? It will get worse, promise you that."

    He gestured to those on the floor. "If I hadn't interfered now, that woman would have killed everyone anyway."

    This was still sounding confusing. Who were these Faya and Sistros? Was the shadow Zas'tel?. And why would one of the students do this? They wanted all of this?

    It also seemed like he would be reunited with his body someday but perhaps at a price. It sounded rather ominous that the Master in his own words would "deal with it".

    "Well Master, I don't know who this Faya or Sistros are, no doubt they were names given to the others I was with. A shame indeed if Faya was lost to this Darkness you speak of or something happened to them that they could not watch their legacy grow nor even if they had a legacy."

    "I sometimes had suspicions regarding the Shadow if it is who I think it is but he did disappear" he shrugged "He was never part of the group anyway".

    He shook his head " But why would a student want to do this? Unless they were coerced or had dark intentions in the first place. The Light was always meant to be protected and yet here the darkness reigns, especially if that woman down there intended to kill everyone including my heir."

    "I suppose I should thank you for stopping this madness so perhaps the light could fight back or maybe the darkness would continue. The future is always in motion; perhaps it can be saved…"

    "Perhaps what may be worse may become better…perhaps this Darkness can be stopped".

    "Faya is Dunkeel's name... Sistros was," his gaze seemed to sweep upon the prone man. "Joren... but, yes, as you suspect, the Shadow was Zas'tel..." The Master's tone saddened. "As I said to him, before he lost his way - the Darkness cannot be stopped, not in one lifetime, anyway," he reflected. "Here, it's worse, because, well, there isn't anyone to stop them."

    "Give me a hand lifting Rouser to his ship, would-ya." The Master fluttered his hands, and picked up Aryan and Ananke. "Basically, those Holocrons of Prophecy I told the others to keep safe ended up in the hands of someone they should not have. I destroyed a couple, to keep the Force safe from any more twists, and turns, but does it really matter, when Ones, Old Ones, and Chosen Ones are in play a century and a half earlier than they should be?"

    The Master shrugged.

    Vydra moved over towards the second Rouser's body (He at least knew his heirs name or surname now) and moved his hand over the smartly dressed man's body using the Force to lift him up. Rouser looked so serene lying there Vydra felt sad that he had been through so much and that he would not see the rest of his life as he wanted.

    So Joren and Dunkeel's names are revealed, what significance they have in the scheme of things is as yet undetermined. Vale hadn't been mentioned yet was she a statue too? Zas'tel seemed to either lose himself or was consumed….

    "This lifetime seems to be lost then if what you are implying is true, that other timelines may have suffered the same fate or worse. But could others be saved? And how do you know this timeline cannot be saved? There may not be any of us left who can do it, but perhaps there are unsung heroes that maybe you have not counted on" he slightly smiled at that.

    Vydra turned serious "Perhaps everything came into play early as you suggested but we as Protectors were never trained for what to expect in another timeline if we did cross over. Because this is what I could have encountered with the new students had I succeeded in bringing them across. Maybe things would still have happened as they were, perhaps not."

    "But what I know is, the Holocrons may have been discovered by someone that shouldn't have had them but it might not come to pass if things have changed or we can still change things. After all things changed when I didn't go ahead with my mission".

    "Not... everything," the Master said, carefully. "Did I foresee your treachery? Did you succeed enough, to mean the future was merely adjusted slightly, and part of your will carried forward?" He shrugged. "I'd love to say I anticipated what happened, but I hadn't expected to be erased from existence, to be fair, not that it's happened for me yet."

    "But, I had expected some push-back from the Force, with what I was meddling in."

    He stepped out the crevasse in the island, and carried Ananke and Graul to their ships with the Force. "What was supposed to happen will simply be accelerated... and if the End of Time was due later, it will simply occur sooner." His tone grew frustrated. "Thus, doomed timeline." His voice lightened.

    "But I'm happy to be surprised -"

    At that moment, Vydra slipped away, as Rouser dropped to the floor, barely caught by the Master before he rebounded from the floor.

    The last words he heard was the Master's annoyance. "That little shrew! She was recording the whole time!"

    He was leaning over a body in the mess below; that of Lyz Graul.


    During the Resurrection and Twilight of the Force II


    Vydra, for his part, was out of strength, and it wasn't for another fourteen years that he regained it, and saw both parts of himself... one, taking a job to Alaris Prime, and the other, settled down on Nouane of all places - with a beautiful Omwati woman called Qwi Xux. His mind caught up with events; the second Death Star; the Emperor's many deaths; the Sith resurgent as the Disciples of Ragnos - one timeline - the defeat of the Empire and rise of a New Republic; the minor jobs of Ike; the love and home and hearth with Qwi.

    It was jarring - and it was a recoil.

    Vydra could sense in his future a wall was about to intervene -

    He didn't have much time, but at least one of him was on Nouane again.

    Unfortunately Vydra's strength left him again which he was getting rather frustrated about. One use of the Force and he was out for the count. But the Masters words still troubled him regarding the doomed timeline that the End of Time would happen sooner than anticipated. Vydra hoped not, for even if his heir didn't survive then someone might help….

    And then he came to once again and his double vision was back. The first Rouser was preparing himself for his next job, more money and more adventure. This Rouser was looking forward to exploring the Jedi Temple down there and what it may contain.

    Vydra also picked up more snippets of history from this Rouser's mind. An incomplete battlestation exploding the Rebellion victorious. The Emperor reborn again, the darkness resurgent. Then a cult calling themselves the Disciples of Ragnos spreading terror and fear with their zealotry and their wish to see some dead Sith Lord reborn.

    Meanwhile the second Rouser whom he had last seen unconscious was now alive and well...and in love with a exotic and beautiful looking blue skinned woman. And he had to smile as he felt the love between the two emanating off them in waves, this Rouser was glad he had finally settled down with the woman of his dreams.

    And looking outside….was he home? Nouane City looked so different now, more modern but the Clock Tower still looked the same. And Vydra felt a pang of sadness for his old home. This world he had gleamed was neutral and that a New Republic had been created from the Empire.

    But Vydra also felt sad, this heir had found love...but was it not going to last?. And there was also something...something that was about to slam down in front of him. Was his time in this form about to run out? Was something about to happen that could affect both his heirs and he wouldn't be able to stop it?.

    Vydra was feeling dread all over….

    Indeed, in a short time the two of them continued their merry adventures. From Alaris, a Twi'lek Sith guided Rouser to the Resurrection, and then to Korriban... from Nouane, his peace was shattered by an intrusion into his home, a violence on Criton's Point...

    The man with the eye-patch - Arb - he and Vydra were alone at one point as the yacht drifted, and he glanced back at Vydra. "So, you made it this far, did ya?"

    [​IMG]

    His nose was turned up, as if snide. His eye yellowed, and Vydra, who of course had heard Rouser interrogate the man, would know he truly was more than he seemed.

    As Vydra continued to watch the firs Rouser met a Twi’lek in rather skimpy clothing *and he shared Rouser’s thoughts that she should really put some clothes on) and entered the ruined Temple. Where another dark sider did battle with the scantily clad Twi’lek and his heir fired shots at her.

    Which culminated in a Temple falling on Rouser and Vydra’s heart skipped a beat. Was this one going to die? Thankfully not though as battered and bruised this Rouser was taken via shuttle to a big triangle looking object in space. And the darkness emanating from it….it made Vydra feel sick. Pascale meanwhile was groggily coming awake.

    Meanwhile the second Rouser...things weren't going well either. He could feel his heirs' pain as his love was torn away from him and the pain of betrayal too as she hadn't been entirely truthful to him about her past. And Vydra shared that he himself hadn't been truthful to his comrades then paid the price once he had revealed all.

    The Clock Tower had been blown up and the rather annoying man who seemed to hand around Rouser then got injured thanks to a young woman.

    Pascale on returning home was met by a man with an eye patch which to Vydra looked rather shifty. But off they went where Pascale met a man called Beaumont whom Vydra was quite impressed with it seemed he was a bit of a bookworm like him and his heir had used a little bit of Force trickery to get on the planet in the first place which Vydra was quite impressed with.

    But violence erupted against an alien warrior in which Vydra felt nothing from. Absolutely nothing. Even amongst non Force sensitives like Rouser’s lover he could sense currents coming off them and flowing around them. But here it was like a blank space. And that scared Vydra as his heir did battle with the alien and just about won but not before a patchwork skinned alien died.

    After that there was a confrontation between his heir and the eye patch wearing man (Vydra had given Pascale some of his strength to give him a little bit of a wake up boost and had helped with shoving the shuttle onto the alien warrior( but the eye patch man refused to give.

    As Rouser departed they were left alone and he could see the other man’s eye was yellow. And the way he spoke to him...had he been watching him somehow?

    Vydra folded his arms “Well well, someone has been keeping an eye on my wanderings. Now since you have not answered Rouser’s questions, perhaps you may answer mine as I probably don’t have a lot of time left. "

    "Who are you and why the hell would you be watching a ghost float around aimlessly wandering through time?. And since your eye turned yellow I assume you are either a Sith...or a phantom who has acquired a human body….”

    "I hope not," Arb drawled. "I like Rouser. Out of you and Ananke and Aryan, he's basically the most decent one out of you, y'know?"

    He pointed at his eye. "This? Oh, maybe. I prefer the word 'morally flexible' to Sith. I'm a bit more than just a lame old nutter furthering an ancient feud. It's quite an insult that you'd compare us."

    "Clearly, I'm not Arb Skynxnex," he said with a shrug. "With your peek across the realities, I'm pretty sure Arb died to Kessel spiders a few years ago now." Indeed, the other Rouser had a vague idea of that from his underworld contacts.

    "I've been through plenty of semblances since my first lifetime, but there ye go. Who hasn't?"

    "So let me guess, you're here just to keep things ticking along are you? Perhaps you are the one who has been meddling with things like my Master did. Would you like to see the End of Time as well?"

    He studied this Arb "So what interests you about my hier so much? He is a part of me of course so if you know about me and my travels you must be an ancient being. One that desires something, maybe someone to further your goals or whatever it is you want."

    "Yes indeed Arb is dead why you would impersonate a criminal is vexing. But I will tell you this...time is running out" he didn't say more.

    "The Echo, of course," Arb replied shortly. "The Epitaph of a timeline is a power that can be taken advantage of. Not just the advantages of knowing what is happening is next, of course, but literal power." He gestured to Vydra. "You're supposed to be dead, after all, and yet here you are."

    "You're more of a victim than a perpetrator, too," Arb said, lazily. "Imagine what someone could achieve with that power if they intentionally took it?"

    "Rouser was literally reanimated by his Echo - by you, and has lived for fourteen more years than he should have. In a different reality, that would have caused a splinter timeline, but in this one, it's just the way things are." He gestured his hands to the sky in a very-Master-like motion. "Here anything can happen."

    "And I just want to be ahead of the curve. Not get kneecapped, or my face shot-up, or my eye taken." Arb grinned. "Being on the other side of the law allows for a lot more... moral flexibility, no?"

    This Arb spoke like the Master and acted like him in his mannerisms….was the Master now here with him? It could be possible, after all he had taken on a part of Vydra and had essentially become him to teach his last class. Maybe the Master imprinted a part of himself into Arb. Who knew….

    "I take your point about being on the other side of things, I see it with my heir that he has done disreputable things. But it has not made him a fully bad person, he lives, he loves, hates violence apparently too although he does have some dark thoughts about his rivals sometimes. And yes this version of Rouser did live longer than he should have, only because I wanted him to survive the darkness".

    Vydra shook his head "But not even my strength can keep him alive much longer. My Echo within him is fading, I'm not quite sure why. I think it has something to do with me. I have a premonition that something is going to happen."

    "Something relating to me, and that I am afraid the Sith God may have left a dark imprint on him that even I cannot erase" he sighed "I feel sorry for his girlfriend when he passes on."

    "I have protected all that I can, and I have tried to make sure the Echo or power has not been taken. Am I a victim? No idea" he looked at Arb "I don't know your role in this timeline, but if it is light I wish you success, if it is dark I hope you are stopped".

    Why thank you," Arb said, softly. "But, y'know, we're going to need that Force sensitivity down the road. I've seen it, y'know."

    "What you don't know is that the Master gave his metaphorical Eye to Zas'tel; in his Forcesaber." He whistled to himself as he paced, arms languid. "And then, the change caused a counter-balance to occur in the Force, which eventually, by the time Zas'tel handed his blade over, became sentient, calling themselves the Presence. So then you have three parts heading down the timeline, happily, and merrily."

    "Until they hit what happened here, and the Presence died, driving its chosen host insane, which is all kinds of hilarious." Arb shrugged. "With the Presence broken, the Force had to allow someone to step up to stop that, and so on, and so forth. Everything gets entangled, and the End of Time is accelerated as nobody is looking to stop it anymore."

    "Everyone reacts and reacts and reacts, until it's way too late." He shrugged. "Fun, right?"

    Cocking his head as if listening, he held up a hand. "But let's get you out of the way, shall we?" A finger snap, and the Force swirled.

    Vydra might have answered, but he was suddenly very aware that both Rousers were, rather impossibly, talking to each other.

    And so a moment happened that Vydra had thought may never happen….his heirs had met. And now something he hoped he could delay doing was about to have to be done.

    He was going to have to kill one of his legacies. To end his life, finish it. And leave the second Rouser's girlfriend in grief and sorrow and with an ache in her heart that would last a while. And Vydra hated himself for it. He was about to become a monster.

    Vydra couldn't think about the Master's eye, Prescences, the End of Time or anything else for that matter, it only came down to this. So this was what I was feeling he thought it all about to come to a crescendo….

    The first Rouser looked like he had been in a battle, he felt like it too. Both Rousers were confused as to what was going on, why were they talking to each other? Vydra of course knew he couldn't reveal himself as that would add more to the confusion.

    How did you explain that you were basically descended from his sister and that basically his body was stuck in a statue somewhere and your spirit was essentially floating around. But darkness was being felt all around and the first Rouser had to live to continue on.

    And so he spoke knowing that to get back to his body the first Rouser would have to be stripped of the Force, to give Vydra strength to.move on. Would Vydra also lose sight of him once he did? He was unsure. But he felt this Rouser was more lighter in nature than the other.

    The first Rouser gave him permission to do so, he had resolve, he knew that Vydra needed the Force more than he did. The second Rouser felt shocked, devastated even. He knew that to stop the darkness he needed the Echo but Vydra had known the darkness had consumed him before Vydra could intervene. The first Rouser had felt it too.

    Vydra made his decision but inside he felt like he was back on top of that building again, his heart breaking, the devastation of what he had done. It was happening all over again. And now he was about to take a man's life away. Venezia would kill him if she knew what he had done.

    I'm so sorry little sister….and he had to comment on how the first Rouser looked her to try and take the sting away.

    His vision blurring with tears he did the deed. He felt the Force go from the first Rouser who felt relieved as he was stripped. But he felt the shock, disbelief and sadness as the second Rouser died and Vydra felt torn apart inside as the Force rushed from the both of them to him. And all he could think of was one word….

    Murderer.

    The Force released him, however, now he was not tethered to either of them; he was free, detached from his family tree, so to speak, and then he lost access to the broken timeline... no, wait, he had a glimpse of Rouser's love - Qwi - she took Rouser's yacht, and his mission, to warn the Chancellor about the...

    Yuuzhan Vong...?

    And she kicked Arb off the team?

    The moment ended, and all that was left was a minor impression left from the other Rouser; he'd left the Force to Vydra, giving the Protector complete freedom to head down his own timeline; along the original one.

    The galaxy rose and fell time and time again; the Empire in the original timeline surrendered, though other remnants continued to fight - as a Second Imperium - until the Yuuzhan Vong arrived, and then a Galactic Alliance arose... the Jedi rising with it, fighting off the invaders... and more Sith... a lot more.

    He lurched over something.

    Literally.


    Months after the events of Last Stand


    He crashed into the floor, as solid as if he was alive.

    The Force in him was drawing him on, but he would be in a cabin aboard a... Star Destroyer. He looked up from his datapad. "And who the hell are you."

    He stood from his desk, gesturing with the Force to send it crashing into the wall so it wasn't in his way.

    [​IMG]

    And so Vydra left his one remaining heir behind and he wished him luck, all the luck in the galaxy for him to survive so the Delomeux line could at least continue or end with him. But he was heading back along the straight and narrow or so it seemed to him anyway.

    He saw the beautiful Omwati woman wail in her grief but then she gathered her lover’s ship and then kicked the Master/Arb type character off the ship which Vydra had to chuckle about it seemed he didn't get his way with her. She was feisty this one. But now he had a name for the alien that had attacked the second Rouser, the Yuuzhan Vong and she seemed to want to warn people about them...

    May the Force be with you he sent the first Rouser’s way before he continued through time.

    The Empire surrendered and peace became a reality well until other factions joined the fight. Battles came and went, the darkness and light fought for supremacy and each took its toll on the other. But then death, destruction, planets eradicated, alien warriors marching across the galaxy shouting war cries with weapons that defeated even the most hardened Jedi warriors.

    And Vydra despaired for he thought that maybe, just maybe the End of Time had come. But luckily it wasn't to be for a Galactic Alliance rose up the light pushing back and defeating these monsters. But there would be a massive clean up afterwards.

    But the darkness returned and there was a hell of a lot more dark warriors than he ever had sensed before, but Vydra felt himself like he was returning to something, returning to something that he thought was lost. And as he crashed to the ground with an oof his eyes opened...and he felt whole again.

    He nearly cheered as he had finally after millennia of travel had reunited himself with his body which had been languishing in a stature for that time.

    However he was hit by the darkness emanating from the man in the room, dressed in robes of black and hurling a desk against the wall in anger. Vydra guessed he was in a cabin of some sort as he rose up slowly patting himself down and brushing dirt off his shirt, waistcoat and trousers.

    He tried to stop the darkness seeping into his mind but it was difficult since his body didn't want to be cooperating so much as it had only just started working again.

    I don’t think he’ll accept Yanjon or that I was a former Protector as a good response….

    Vyda smiled “My name is Vydra Delomeux, i’m a former librarian now traveller of sorts. To be honest i’m not sure why i’m here with you unless the Force deemed it necessary to be in the same room as a man who wields the dark side of the Force” his smile faded and he raised an eyebrow “And who pray tell are you? I don't think i’ve seen anyone like you before….”

    "I am Darth Caedus," the man sneered. "Former librarian?" He scoffed. A hand came up, and Vydra would actually feel himself choking, as if he was corporeal again at long last.

    "You are an intruder and a spy." He stepped forward, igniting a crimson blade. As he stepped closer, it became more clear that his face was pale, clearly being drawn upon by the dark side churning inside him. "I don't know what Force trick you used, but I have little doubt I can force it from you."

    He grinned sadistically at the pun.

    Great! A few minutes back in my body and now I might die!

    Vydra immediately grabbed his throat as the invisible choke hold started. And the man had a lightsaber, Vydra was unarmed. The odds weren't looking good for him getting out of this one. He would have to use his brain and his Force powers to try and get out of this one.

    And so he delved deep into his soul to try and push back. This Caedus looked like he had used the Force way too much and he could be weak in some areas. Maybe the truth was in order….

    "I...am...also...known...as...Yanjon" he managed to get out "I….just arrived...here...now...from...the past"

    Caedus released him, and Vydra would be able to breath, but his translucence was evident; the Sith had injured his essence. "Interesting." The ship shuddered, and he looked up briefly, yellow eyes thoughtful. "I have my vision of a changed future, and you appear, claiming to be from the past, travelling, presumably, forward."

    He arched an eyebrow, and stalked closer. "Did you trip over what I have done to the Force, perhaps?"

    There was a snide tone to his voice, and also a degree of hope. "I know of a Yanjon, from Dwartii - a dead, dead world in the Nouane Sector..." He grabbed Vydra by the neck of his shirt. "A Sage, you claim to be?" His voice was mocking. "A great speaker of truths and laws?"

    For God's sake would he stop TRYING TO KILL ME!

    Vydra coughed as he was released but his spirit felt a little pained, Caedus had damaged him. Even weakened this man would not stop until Vydra told him everything or was a puddle on the floor.

    And then Caedus grabbed him, Vydra grabbing his hand so he didn't try choking him again.

    "I don't know what you have done, what you intend to do but I know it cannot be good since you wield the dark side so willingly. You look weak, drained, and it is taking its toll on you. And one day your body and spirit will crumble and you won't realise it until it is too late"

    He narrowed his eyes "I was bequeathed the name Yanjon by my Master, he was actually known as The Master. And I know nothing of a world called Dwartii, I come from the planet Nouane itself. And I never created those truths and laws someone must have used my name for them. Because before I traveled I sent myself into exile"

    "Interesting," Caedus said. "I am an exile myself, from my family, my friends, and my daughter, too, would you believe." He chuckled drily. "But now it's all done, and my victory is at hand, so I suppose I can say without there being any consequences."

    His eyes briefly flared. "I saw a future where my daughter joined the dark side... so I broke the Force to change it..." A chuckle."Now she'll sit on a White Throne surrounded by her friends, in peace."

    His fist squeezed. "In the peace I brought her, with the blood of the evil."

    The ship shuddered again, and he sneered. "The Moffs will be panicking; and you are the trash of time, clearly, if your story is true. The exile, and thus, like, a traitor." His lips smoothed out. "For there must always be traitors. Those have been betrayed, and now betray in turn."

    He lifted his hand, and swatted Vydra into the wall with bone-crushing strength, but he arrived elsewhere -

    During the events of Fate of the Jedi: Apocalypse

    Tripping and falling into water in a misty glade.

    He was in a swamp of some kind, surrounded by deeper water, which seemed to stretch on forever and ever and ever.

    So what he’s saying Vydra thought was he decided to change the future so his daughter became a light sider instead of a dark sider for some unknown reason. Wouldn't he, if he was dark himself, not want her to become Queen of the Dark?.

    Was the dark about to champion here? And if he is an exile too this is a lesson to me. Don’t become dark like him, don’t be a villain of the piece and don’t use the blood of others for your own game.

    I may be an exile, I may have lost the sight of my heirs but I know now that I must find togetherness again.And not betray those I may find as friends, lovers whatever.


    Before Vydra could speak out he was forcibly shoved backwards with such force that Vydra thought he was probably going to be smashed to bits and die….

    But it seemed the Force or someone else had other ideas because he suddenly landed and not so gracefully into swampy water. It splashed all over his clothes and face and he felt like he was soaking wet.

    Oh fantastic he thought looking around. The swampy water was everywhere and the water looked deep wherever he would go.

    Well I guess it’s time for a swim and hope that I don’t drown or reach a shore at least. No other thing for it….

    He stood up trying to shake some water off before heading forward sloshing through the swamp to try and reach the other side.

    A hand grabbed his ankle, holding him firm in place. "I wouldn't go any further if I was you - you'll fall, and the depths of eternity are endless."

    The hand had come out of the water, actually. Peering down would reveal dozens upon dozens of little windows down into the depths, almost as if each was a chamber. All of them had the faces of people, some Vydra would recognise, and some he would not.

    The one which had grabbed him had Caedus' face, and he was beneath the surface, looking perplexed.

    "Yanjon, why are you here?"

    Vydra was about to kick whatever had grabbed him when he peered down….and wished he hadn't.

    It was like peering into his past a bit and seeing people he had seen on his ghostly travels. There were people from all the centuries he had traveled, he was pretty sure some of them were related to his heirs and one he thought one of the Rouser’s had talked to. Why were these here? Was this a place for the souls of the galaxy to come and rest?.

    Especially since some of the people he saw in these chambers were people he hadn't met before. Why had he been brought to this place? Was this another test? Was the Master here as well somewhere?

    The person who had grabbed him was Caedus and he was calling him by his Sage name not his usual name.

    “Well well it seems you have come to me as a blast from the past. Why are you in this swamp? Trying to atone for your sins?. Let me guess you’re going to tell me that you failed in your plans and that basically you got put here in your own little version of Hell."

    "That you’re suddenly trying to protect me after trying to smash me into a wall and trying to choke me to death. Why should I trust a word that you say?. How do I know you are not trying to kill me again?”

    He narrowed his eyes “You damaged my spirit, and that’s a hard thing to come back from” Vydra folded his arms “After I disappeared out of the cabin I arrived here and as you can see by the state of my clothes I fell into this disgusting swamp. So maybe you have an idea of why i’m here”.

    "I've been dead nearly four years," Jacen supplied, his hand returning to the watery depths. "It's a nice damnation, if it helps."

    "I'm a new man, after death. It's very calming," he scoffed. "I'd recommend it, personally." His eyes turned. "This is the Beyond Shadows, a pocket dimension where Force users end up for a time before they pass on... in theory. Most of the people at this end of the swamp are from my lifetime, so I don't know how long these mists go on."

    "But if you lose your footing, you'll drown; fair warning as recompense for my brutal behaviour."

    "Vydra?" It was a woman's voice, but it was far, far, far, away.

    So it seemed Caedus had met his end and was now waiting in what the religious sects on Nouane used to call purgatory. Souls and spirits waiting to proceed on to the afterlife. Perhaps this was what happened to those who were Jedi or Sith. Perhaps he would end up here at the end….

    If perhaps he had reached his end. Vydra sighed perhaps this is my end, just when I thought that I was fully back.

    He looked down again "Oh yes i've had a liberating journey through time myself. I thought I was dead when in fact it seemed my spirit separated from my body and I was floating through time watching everything happen. It was rather surreal compared to maybe what you experienced".

    "But thank you for your advice, maybe I will stay here, as I don't fancy dying today."

    And then his head snapped around as he heard the woman's voice. There was no way he was risking going through the swamp and dropping into oblivion. And so he tried to stretch his senses out to try and find out who it was who was calling him.

    His senses told him the truth.

    It was Venezia.

    "Brother?"

    What is she doing here?

    Was this a trap?


    Vydra knew he couldn't go forward. Stray but a little and it was a one way ticket to death. Or getting stuck.

    He called out "Ven, is that you? Are you actually a ghost here? Or in a chamber?" His voice turned sad "I can't come to you, to do so would risk my death and to be honest I quite fancy staying alive, it's better than the situation I was in"

    He sighed "I'm sorry for everything. Leaving you, Mum and Dad behind, you thinking I was dead when actually I wasn't. But to be honest if I tried to explain to you what i've been through….you'd probably think I was bonkers".

    "Vydra!" Ven cried out. "Where are you? What are you doing here?"

    There was a pause. "Are you dead?"

    Caedus made a noise to draw Vydra's attention. In the distance, at the opposite end of the swamp to Ven, was a woman with golden hair, her face obscured by the mist. "I'd get moving if I was you."

    "She's an Old One."

    Vydra's heart sank, she couldn't hear him. And now thanks to Caedus's warning he would actually have to move into the swamp because a woman was watching him.

    Don't move then move, blimey make up your mind….

    And he felt like he really didn't want to stretch his senses out to the golden haired lady. So there was one thing for it. Head towards where Ven was and hope he didn't fall.

    "Ven" he called "Keep talking to me and i'll find you" he sloshed forward taking each step carefully but making sure he moved slightly quicker.

    "And as far as i'm aware i'm not dead. Well my spirit is slightly damaged, you can thank a dark sider for that one".

    As he said her name, she rose to the surface, hands not quite caught on the water surface, but she could angle herself to see him.

    "I know I am; Nouane... it suffered, after you left. But we forgot, and it seemed like it was fine," she said, sounding upset. "I named my son after you," Venezia continued, her voice catching. "I had to."

    Where Vydra to look back, the woman in the mists would be closer…

    Vydra was finally glad to see his sister after all this time but he knew it may not be a happy reunion. After all he did walk off and leave his family before starting his time travels.

    And he did look back and saw the woman getting closer. He supposed that because he wasn't dead she was probably chasing him off.

    The swamp was getting deeper and he hoped he wouldn't get stuck and die in front of his sister. Maybe he could try swimming. He continued forward.

    "I'm sorry I caused you a lot of pain Ven" he said sadly "But I couldn't go on anymore, not after what I did. I tried to end it all but was stopped. And I became a ghost of sorts travelling through time seeing your heirs grow up. Watching the Delomeux line continue….one sadly died younger than he should have, a Sith God claimed him" he wasn't going to spill the fact that he had killed the second Pascale by stripping him of the Echo (what he of course didn't know was that the Echo had indeed passed on to his former girlfriend).

    "I saw you name your son after me, I watched as centuries passed and our legacy continued. But the Force has decided or someone has decided to bring me back to my body. And to continue on in life" he turned sad again "I am so, so, sorry for everything Ven. I was there...you just couldn't see me much".

    "I could feel you, Vy, don't worry," she assured him, even though she was dead. "Did it make a difference though? Did anything change because of us?" Ven sounded like her voice was cracking, as she asked. "People die, Vy, it's what we did doing that, which matters..."

    Vydra hadn't looked back to see whether ghe woman was still pursuing him, but he continued just in case.

    Why was her voice cracking? Was she still upset? Or was she slipping away?

    "Well all I do know is that me running away from the Protectors did something. The Master was alive and well it seems and he said I might have brought the End of Time closer in one timeline. I saw two timelines Ven, two of one of your heirs a Pascale Rouser."

    "They met each other, talked to each other. One decided to be stripped of the Force, the other was stripped and died because his body could no longer handle the Echo of me and the Sith God that consumed him".

    He sighed "I don't know what happened to the Pascale that survived. I ended up back in my own body and lost sight of him. I think it was me that caused these things to happen, not you" Vydra then looked miserable.

    Venezia didn't manage to follow all of that, and was interrupted by a whisper. "Hello, Vydra."

    It was right next to his shoulder.

    She was Abeloth.

    "What are you doing here in my Shadows, I wonder?"

    Vydra was beginning to wonder whether his sister had thought he was bonkers…

    When the whisper came near his shoulder. Itt must be the woman, and she had caught him.

    How the bloody hell does she know my name!

    He nearly jumped out his skin. But he clenched his fists wishing his Forcesaber was back on his hip so he could defend himself.

    "I've been wondering that myself" he said "I wonder what you want with me. You know my name but I don't know yours" he still didn't turn round.

    "And I wonder if your plans are nefarious or not…."

    “I’m Abeloth,” she said, stepping forward. She was beautiful, but in an unearthly manner, desultory in her sultry swagger. “I just want to be loved,” Abeloth said sadly, softly. “Am i that unlovable?”

    Venezia seemed unable to speak, but there was a sense of many, many held breaths. There was a spectral surge and Vydra’s wish came through - he had a Forcesaber in his hand. Abeloth looked down at it and then threw her arms forward - which immediately split into a dozen tentacles for each limb -

    Ladies and gentlemen….we have a mad woman in the house.

    It seemed like every spirit in this place including Ven's was waiting for something to happen. And Vydra could sense the malice coming off her in waves. So this was his first big test since coming back. Perhaps he could show everyone what he had learnt, what he could do.

    To become a Protector once more. Yanjon the Sage.

    And he felt the familiar metal cylinder appear in his hand. He didn't know if it was his, or another one, or what colour blade it held. But at least he could defend himself.

    Vydra closed his eyes and let the light flow through him. And he lifted the Forcesaber up as Abeloth's limbs became tentacles. He settled into his 'Guard of the Hawk' position and narrowed his eyes at the beast.

    To protect and to serve.

    To defend not attack.


    "Sorry love, but you're not my type" he said with a slight smirk before activating his blade.

    He was ready for her.

    The blade shone yellow - and sliced through her tentacles as if butter. She swept through the blade and it through her, and her through him. For a moment, their essences mingled and then she paused behind him, coughing before latching on to his throat from behind. Here they were not solid in-fact but shadows of themselves, and they had no physical element to clash or bruise. They were wills, and it was Abeloth's will to smother Vydra's!

    As the blade came down he spotted it was yellow now not green as his old blade was. He could feel it singing to him, he was now a pure defender, a true patron of the defensive arts.

    But the blade did nothing and as she advanced Vydra was concerned that she would just capture him and gobble him up. But she passed straight through and now he wondered if he was in fact dead.

    Because if they were both alive, how could she do that? He felt the blade in his hand but maybe something bad happened?.

    I don't like this at all….

    He could feel her inside him, well her presence anyway. And she was dark and malevolent and he tried to push her out. She exited anyway but then she came on the attack again, this time wrapping a tentacle around his throat.

    GET OFF!

    He couldn't turn around and the blade was at the moment useless. So he extinguished it, closed his eyes and gathered himself. Her presence was trying to crush him and so he dug as deep as he could pulling all his strength and power into pushing her away or blowing her away backwards.

    Vydra knew that this could be the end for him but he wasn't going to give up. Some help would be good, he thought.

    Abeloth, fortunately, liked to play with her food, and specifically consume the terror of her feast. She flung Vydra aside, and he would rebound upon the marshes, kicking up water which faded away before it landed. Her tentacles regenerated, and she took a deep, satisfying breath. "Lovely."

    "I needed a snack before the main dish, but now -"

    She turned her head to look back the way she had came, cutting off -

    Rolling, Vydra would fetch up against the edge of a pool, tipping -

    Well I guess she got fed up with me quickly….

    That was his thought as he went flying through the air before skidding along the swamp and eventually coming to a stop. And he was at the edge of a pool about to go tipping into it.

    Which would probably mean certain death.

    My first battle with someone and get thrown aside like a toy. Spectacular Vydra….

    He tried to get his legs properly under himself and tried to sort his balance out. This Abeloth was heading back the way she arrived and Vydra had to try and do something at least.

    Otherwise he was going to fall in and join the other spirits.

    A pair of hands pushed Vydra back, keeping him from sinking. It was a man - his face obscured by a Black-Coat.

    “Don’t fall in!”

    There was a sound of conflict, as two Force users were set upon by Abeloth; Luke Skywalker and a Dark Man. “Oh and I wouldn’t get involved with the heavyweights. This is going to be messy and violent.”

    Vydra looked down preparing to activate his blade at the person pushing back at him….

    But he relented, attaching the Forcesaber on his hip. This one was covered with a black coat. Was this the Master? Was he in this form now?

    "You seem to be following me around again" he said looking down and making sure his balance was now secured "Unless of course you are not my Master…."

    He looked over to where the sounds of conflict were coming from "She is a nasty piece of work this Abeloth. She knew my name which was strange. But it looks like she's meeting her match. I definitely couldn't best her" .

    Vydra looked down frowning "So what should I do now? Hang around until she is done?. And what are you doing here anyway?".

    “Abeloth kills the others,” the Master said. “Or, she might, or will... it’s not super clear. I mean, I am dead; it’s not easy to stay on top of things.”

    “It’s how she knows you, anyway,” he said with a last exertion. “You need to get out of here, Vydra. Reconnect with your body. This place isn’t entirely real.”

    The Dark Man and Luke Skywalker were brawling with Abeloth, tipping chunks of their essence from each other as they fought.

    Vydra could feel the fight getting rather intense. Abeloth and the two men fighting her were having a fair old ding dong and everyone may not come out of it unscathed. And he felt helpless, how could he protect if he could not help?.

    And if this place wasn't real….well maybe the Master was right maybe it was time to head back to the real world.

    "Perhaps I will see you around Master, depending on where I end up of course" he smiled at that then faced forward, closing his eyes and centering himself trying to find the pathway back to his body.

    There was a flurry of movement, as the Jedi and Sith wrestled with Abeloth, rolling across the marsh and splashing up. They rolled through where Vydra had been, a momentary flash of horror and anger and sorrow and despair filling him as he left -

    During the events of New Sith Trials, part I

    And woke.

    He was...

    Hot? Searing warmth, choking heat. The Master’s voice sounded out. “Shhhhh.”

    A gloved hand, translucent, like him still, grabbed at Vydra and pulled him behind a rocky outcropping. The black arena was surrounded by lava, and even then, they seemed to be inside a volcano. “Shhhh,” the AndMaster said again, pointing. Over the mountain roar was a class of lightsabers.

    Four Sith were in the midst of a terrible battle, brutally three upon one. A Zabrak, a Nagai and two humans, the Nagai being the one ganged up upon - or, rather, dominating the other three. “When you left, there were only three Keys to the World Between Worlds - the others - but they were also Keys to other places, of course."

    "Those Keys passed down and through others, until, eventually... here they stood, upon a portal to the war a hundred millennium ago.”

    “If they die, then the door will be opened, and the End of Time - an eternal, terrible, monstrous paradox that will consume all reality - will occur, personified by Him - Typhojem, the Immortal God of the Sith.”

    He specified the brutal tank of a Force user who was fighting brilliantly and aggressively. “That Nagai, Darth Wanderguard, has been twisted by Typhojem’s black Holocron and intends to open the door into everlasting darkness - so he may be reunited with his fallen love.”

    There was a tragic timbre to his tone.

    Vydra heard the battle head towards him as the light and the dark fought with the being Abeloth and he felt them pass through him as he tried to concentrate heading back to his body. The tumult of emotions was pounding away at him and his concentration was beginning to slip….

    But as he opened his eyes again he felt like he had been dropped into an inferno. Was this Hell? Was he back in his body? Was his Forcesaber still with him just in case he needed to go into battle?.

    And then a familiar voice, the Masters and Vydra had to snort I guess I did see you around he thought before he was grabbed and before he could protest was told to be quiet. Vydra glared at him but his ears caught the sound of battle nearby, the familiar thrum of lightsabers.

    He took a quick peek over the outcropping and saw four darksiders by the feelings coming off them doing battle. One man he didn't recognise the species, another looked slightly familiar with the horns, and there were two humans.

    The Master began to speak about Keys but that was going over Vydra's head as he ducked down. But he did catch the bit about Typhojem, the End of Time and this Wanderguard chap initiating it so he could get his girlfriend back.

    He looked at the Master with narrowed eyes "You'd be surprised what people do for love. Have you ever felt that emotion? It's quite enlightening" he faced forward again "And so here is what you spoke about, the End of Time has come at last. I assume you don't want me to confront these four as you pulled me behind this rock".

    But Vydra was feeling a sense of dread, a familiar mission "I am beginning to wonder if it was my mission all along to enter the forbidden door. That even if I ran away I would still have to go through it" he sighed "A destiny I could never escape".

    He looked at the Master "I can't fight all four and I can't beat a Sith God as shown by the fact I could not beat him back in Pascale. So what do I do?".

    “And that was just a remnant of Typhojem; kept in his crystal, for there was no acolyte to transfer him to said black Holocron,” the Master said wryly, connecting a mystery in history for anyone apart from Vydra. “This is the real thing, coming forward in time... If you went through that portal, it would create such a paradox that I don’t know how the Force would recover.”

    “I tried to create a few paradoxes by shuffling around some individuals and families, but only to fix a few loose ends I may or may not have inadvertently caused.” The Master shrugged. “Essentially descendants of Joren, Vale, Dunkeel and you, of course.”

    He looked a bit dour. “Zas’tel was, in all likelihood, a mistake, ditto Palpatine. But when you’re trying to permanently end the eternal conflict between Light and Dark, what can I say?” He sighed theatrically.

    “I wrote something True, once, you see,” the Master said, slowly. “About how the Force doesn’t care about us; about it allows billions to die to satisfy some distant definition of Balance. Personified by the Gods of the Force, I decided I wouldn’t be a part of it - that I wouldn’t stand for it anymore. That I would kill Darkness, once and for all; that I would betray the design which enslaved us all.”

    “You’ve seen it, haven’t you?” The Master leered. “How thirty five millennia of history has been filled with horror? In endless conflict? In death? In the Star Wars?”

    So is this it? This is where I end my life? I've just maybe gotten my body back and now I have to die in this volcanic Hell?

    "Oh I've seen it all right" he said, not looking at the Master "Endless death and destruction, wars just as I suppose you said there would be at the start. All of us involved in some way or another, some in darkness, some in the light. Our descendants doing things that sometimes put the very fate of the galaxy in their hands. But all it was was endless wars and there has never been true peace."

    Vydra then looked at him a resigned look on his face "So this where it all ends then? I can't do anything to stop it, time for it all to end just like that? So basically I and everyone else dies because I can't do anything? Just let the battle play out? Don't jump through the hole because it will create a paradox?"

    "Is this where your eternal battle ends because the End of Time is here? That things cannot change? That basically everything must die now? What am I doing here then? Just to witness it all and die alone?".

    “Well...” the Master paused. “Wouldn’t ending all of this be better than fighting without end? Surely?”

    He pointed at the brawl. “If that fight precipitates the end of the anguish, wouldn’t it be right? That a galactic reset would truly be saving us from enslavement? By the time the Gods of the Force died, it was too late to break the cycle; the Jedi and Sith have a hundred millennia long legacy to pick up on.”

    “Surely we should applaud the destruction of this failed reality?”

    "So what happens to this place then? All clean blank slate, doesn't matter whether people deserve to die or not they're just gone" Vydra snorted "You think that is defeating the dark? Just letting a Sith God rampage around? You might as well have said you are about to commit grnocide. Protector of the Light?. No. Because you gave up and let the darkness win."

    Vydra folded his arms "So that's it. The Protector legacy comes to an end. I haven't even lived my life and yet here I am, with you, about to be consumed by the same entity that took one of my heirs from me. All so peace can reign. I'm literally jumping up and down with excitement" he sneered at the Master "I told you I would see you in Hell, guess what?. You will."

    He sighed, rested his back against the rock and closed his eyes, sadness enveloping him. Venezia had lived her life to the full, the Drlomeux line continuing. He had hoped to one day continue it himself….maybe. But all that was going to happen now was a rather painful death.

    The Master looked carefully to Vydra.

    “Yes... just that, my old friend. I’m so sorry; but I had to.” He broke, falling to all fours, as Darth Haretisch stood over the others and the Well began to open -

    “I had to.”

    His voice sounded despondent, sounded devastated, sounded as if he had no other choice and it was over. In his words was the weight of a reality destroyed, and, indeed, many, many, many other realities, all because of what had happened here and now.

    That’s what it sounded like.

    There was not Darkness, not Hell, but a blank...

    blank...

    blank...

    Now..

    blank…

    Vydra heard the Masters despondent tone but all he could feel himself was sadness, devastation and loss. The fact that he was going to die without living his life, doing what he should be doing. Protecting.

    He pulled his knees up and rested his face on them, his heart breaking as the enormity of it all came crashing down on him. Vydra was probably going to feel it all as the reality ended. Trillions upon trillions of people, all gone. His shoulders began to shake as he sobbed for everyone in the galaxy.

    I wish I wasn't stopped trying to jump off that building. I wish I had died there. I thought that if I lived for my sister I would survive. But no, the Master's plan means I die too. To my heir I hope you live your life, do the things you want to do. That I could not. To my sister i'll see you soon, we will be together once again….

    And as he woke up again he saw nothing, like it was all blank, then slowly it resolved into black. Thankfully he supposed his death had come quickly.

    So this is what death feels like….nothing at all as Typhojem eats it all up. And I couldn't do anything at all. I suppose I am one with the Force I guess….

    His eyes would acclimatise, slowly. Very slowly.

    He was trapped... immobile, but he could feel.

    A breath escaped Vydra - he was definitely corporeal.

    He couldn't move, but he was alive; and he had the Force.

    Just...

    Stuck.

    Am I blind? I can't see!

    His vision was beginning to return and he could feel his chest rising and falling. He could feel his fingers and toes and he could feel the Force surrounding him. But he couldn't move, why couldn't he move?

    Am I tied down? Have I come back to that crystalline thing? I need to get up!.

    Vydra had to try and keep calm although it was difficult when your brain, senses and vision were still rather fuzzy. He would have to try and find out what had happened after the End of Time later. Right noe he had to get out of the situation he was in right now.

    He took several deep breaths, reaching deep within himself once again. If he had bonds or was trapped he hopefully could use the Force to free himself, or so he hoped.

    On the count of three he pushed as hard as he could with a roar.

    It cracked, and cracked, and sunlight shone in -

    And it consumed him, his eyes equalizing after a long, long, long, moment, revealing that Vydra was the first to emerge from a set of four oversized statues in a rocky wasteland, a man in Black standing before him with a box behind him, and a Forcesaber in his black-gloved hands.

    "Took your time, didn't ya?"

    TAG: @Sinrebirth

    AND

    @HanSolo29 , @QueenSabe7 , @Mitth_Fisto , @darthbernael , @greyjedi125 (For mentions and madness)
     
    darthbernael and Sinrebirth like this.
  22. Sinrebirth

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

    Registered:
    Nov 15, 2004
    IC: Black-Coat
    Dwartii, during the End of Time

    He regarded the Eye within the Master of Master's Forcesaber as the first statue crumbled, depositing Vydra upon the floor. It had been a very long time since they'd last seen each other. "Took your time, didn't ya?"

    He turned, and saw that Dunkeel had also been released from his statue.

    That was Yanjon and Faya, alright.

    Sistros and Braata seemed to be emerging a bit slower, but that wasn't important. He expected the two of them present would have roughly a billion questions, after all. Indeed, spending that long in the statue would be difficult, to say the least. It wasn't like carbonite freezing, they wouldn't be blinded. They hadn't been conscious, or tortured, not like in an oubliette. But they hadn't been in stasis, either. They had been...

    Taken out of sync.

    He gave them a moment to acclimate themselves with living, and breathing, again.

    Were they to look into the stars, they would see constellations that had moved over the thirty-five thousand years they'd been missing. Indeed, even the Force itself would feel different.

    Maybe they'd need two moments.

    He looked back at the Black-Box by his feet, one last check that it was there.

    A fair distance away, standing where thirty-five millennia ago had been the hilltop that had once looked over the Nouane, was now a ridge of stunted stone. Standing upon it, two intruders were evident. They had been looking for the box, and they had known, that it had not been a matter of where it was, but when.

    But they were not relevant to the reunion between Vydra, Dunkeel, and the Black-Coat.

    TAG: @Jerjerrod-Lennox, @Mitth_Fisto (for now)
     
  23. AgentViper007

    AgentViper007 Force Ghost star 7

    Registered:
    Mar 9, 2005
    OOC: A combo with @Mitth_Fisto and @Sinrebirth

    IC: Vydra Delomeux, Dunkeel, Zas'tel
    Location: Hell?


    After everything he had experienced, everything he had gone through Vydra opened his eyes….and thought he was in Hell.

    The statue that had been his well...prison? It had crumbled as he pushed himself out and onto the floor. And in front of him was the one person he did not want to see right now.

    He ignored the man in black's jibe as he tried to get up. It took a few minutes as he had to get his surroundings into focus. After all he had been in that statue for millenia.

    Vydra ran a hand through his blonde hair as he looked around. There were other statues there and was that another one opening? And as it did a familiar person fell out….Dunkeel. The Chistori had made it!

    However Vydra couldn't celebrate. Joren had no doubt told the others what he had done, and the Chistori with all his talk about culling could go for Vydra. And of course Vydra's Forcesaber was gone.

    He watched and waited.

    With all faith, a step into nothing. With all challenging roars into the darkness, a solid stance on the light. With eyes open, past is prologue and future is epilogue. The dance had come, the crystal had risen and his tomb had passed through the ages as his echoes and light had gone forward as a curling line that doubled upon itself in several turns.

    Then it had come, a scent. The crystal was receding. Then it was gone, crumbled away in the moment of birth anew. He fell to his fours, coughing at the oddness of breathing. With a shake of his head he stood with eyes wide shut - seeing the world around him yet not caring about it yet in the slightest. Standing on claw tips he reached his hands to the sky as he breathed in, his jaw open and tongue dancing out as he rolled his head. Dropping down his chin to his chest, arms to his sides he breathed once more, he knew that scent, and now he knew that form that was there. Musty odor as one bathed in dead tomes tattooed with the words of the dead and long gone. Blond hair.

    Leaping forward he made to grasp the other and lift him up! A firm visiting grip as he hissed in delight! "Librarian! I have wanted to speak far too long!" Laughing heartily he spun a little before looking at the three other bodies he could spy from that spin. And the two statues.


    "Who are you?" he asked in a sudden more serious tone as he stared. Transfixed on the closest one that stood within their midst.


    He had the silver-and-gold blade in his hand, hung loose, and he looked from Vydra to Dunkeel, and then back at the other two. "Well, I'm not the Master, that's for sure." He reached for his mask and pulled back it.


    [​IMG]
    "It's me, Zas'tel," he said softly. "A while ago, I had to give up my form and I've been through plenty of semblances since.". His tone was soft. "They call me Arb nowadays, but y'know, whatever."

    Vydra got a rather nice surprise as the Chistori picked him up and whirled him around as if he was a child. It was unexpected but rather welcome.

    He simply patted Dunkeel on the shoulder with a broad smile. "Good to see you too, still going for the topless look?" Vydra said with a wink.

    But then it was on to serious business before he and the Chistori caught up properly. And a rather surprising reveal.

    "Well, well" Vydra folded his arms glaring at Zas'tel, if it was him "The shadow now has a face" he looked at Dunkeel ``I met this Arb in my spiritual travels through time and space. And he was just like the Master, speaking in riddles''.

    He faced forward again "So I don't know if it was you or the Master I was speaking to. But I distrust you both. You, sneaking off on your own mission whilst I had the balls to actually tell the truth. And it cost me everything".

    "So whatever you have to say is probably the same nonsense that was spouted since the beginning".

    Dunkeel looked at the 'new' Zas'tel, sniffing hard as he imprinted this new scent in his mind, a new association for the furry Deffel. Vydra had his say, he was acting like a closed book in his library - nothing new could be added.

    "I want to hear it from both of you. I heard The Master give you your name Zas'tel, I heard you had betrayed us Vydra, I heard Zas'tel accused the same. Of all these things we were given a gift of the future, of a hunt for the end. We never all shared as should be done in the company of equal guardians of the same thing, not even with one supposed to be the leader of it. That must end. Now." He spoke harshly but true, he had known they never had enough time to talk, never made that time. After so much has happened he wanted. . .no. They Needed to do so now.

    The memory of the darkness laughing at him echoed through his mind, he shuddered at it but accepted it just the same. They had stopped Abeloth, but at what cost? They had all lost so much and now they stood on this barren landscape again, released from their preservation to live again. Why?

    The scent was faintly reminiscent of Zas’tel’s, in-fact. It was more of a spiritual smell, at this point, which would probably be a surprise.

    As much in response to Vydra as to Dunkeel, he held up the Master’s Forcesaber. “I had a role to play. And after all these years, it’s done.”

    With an almost matter-of-fact tone, Arb turned to the other two statues. “Looks like Vale and Joren didn’t make it.”

    Of course, it was hard to be surprised when you’d been required to live for thirty-five thousand years. He almost envied them having been in statues.

    Ah there it was. So Dunkeel had been told about his betrayal by Joren. A shame his former friend had not made it as Vydra would have liked him to tell the others what he did to Vydra too from his own mouth.

    And it also meant his Forcesaber was definitely gone.

    He looked at Zas'tel and sneered "Yet again more questions than answers. Straight out of the Masters playbook. I suppose the big question is what role did you have to play in this then".

    He turned back to Dunkeel his features softening "So Joren did tell you. I thought he did. So here is my story".

    "The Master asked me to train apprentices. Give them Holocrons of Heresies to learn about what was coming. Lead them into a better future. But he asked me to do this in secret. I accepted and started on that mission".

    His expression changed to a sad one "It was betrayal, I knew it was. I don't know why the Master didn't want me to tell you all. Eventually it all got too much for me and I met with Joren to tell him. As my friend he deserved to know about what happened".

    "Of course he got angry with me. I handed my Forcesaber and Holocron over for him to keep safe as I did not deserve them anymore" he shrugged "Guess since he's not coming back they've both been lost".

    "I decided to go into exile after what I did. I felt I did not deserve to be a Protector anymore. But Joren did one more thing. He spoke my true name and stripped me of the Force".

    "The guilt ebbed away at me. I wanted to forget everything. I wanted to die. So I tried to commit suicide. But I became crystalised and then everything went black. I thought I was dead, but I was not. I traveled through time and space. Saw Venezia my sister give birth to a son she named after me. Saw her line through the ages".

    "Me him" he pointed at Arb "Heard that we had become what they call Sages. Killed one of my sister's descendants as he was tainted by the dark and was going to become a monster so I stripped him of the Force. Fought Abeloth in spirit form, spoke to dark warriors they call Sith…."

    "And then ended up here. And I seem to have the Force back too".

    Dunkeel took a moment with head low, breathing a hissing sigh into the Force and the air. A soft keen of sadness and sorrow for his lost fellow Protectors. None were perfect, least of all himself. "I dreamed but two dreams. Long and slow, far from here." He whispered.

    Looking up at the weapon Zas'tel held he nodded. "The Master saw it, us. All this. But if you are done what are we here for? What is the plan for you are now done?"

    Arb gestured to Vydra. “The Master explained it to him, long ago. He had his own goals, and did what he had to.”

    “Those children Vydra gave Holocrons to, they became a second generation of Protectors... made quite a mess of things, but they came good in the end,” Arb shrugged. “If anything, your sudden twist made things a bit dangerous.”

    His tone wasn’t remotely judgmental. What had happened, it had done so for him thirty five thousand years ago. Zas’tel - Arb - had plenty of time to get over it. “But you’d need to listen to what Vydra setup.”

    Maybe the Chistori was trying to process everything, the lack of a reaction so far was either good or bad. Vydra didn't know which. Joren he would not miss, Vale he would.

    And his students? Well he'd only met them once or twice so he couldn't really call them his anyway.

    Vydra waved his hand in dismissal "I didn't really set up much. I met them, gave them their Holocrons and told them to come when the call came" he smiled slightly "guess they did".

    "I don't know what happened after that. I don't know if they became like us, crystalized until the time came to be released. I don't know if they even had descendants to be trained."

    He shrugged "I suppose we will find out soon enough. Or maybe we will have a totally new class to train. The Master wanted me to train these apprentices and with me go through the World Between Worlds. Which of course is forbidden. So I don't know if that is still the case now.".

    "Hmm." Dunkeel grumbled, a staccato of guttural clicks followed as he pondered the words. "I suppose my task might be at hand then, the backup for Joren." He shook his head sadly, "Vale would likely have tried to disarm you and question you. Both. Joren. . .was Joren."

    Looking down he rubbed his lightsaber, the one he had named and modeled after it's name. Fang. "Who are those two?" he softly asked with a sideways eye to Zas'tel. One who's spiritual flavor was a new way to approach something.

    Vydra may have been the oldest of the group but he was no leader, he would be happy for Dunkeel to lead now.

    He looked over to the two shapes behind Zas'tel and stretched out with his senses to see if he could get a sense of them.

    "No idea" he responded back "Aligned with Zas'tel? People who followed him here?".

    Vydra turned and gave the two people a stare as if daring them to show themselves.

    The two split, vanishing behind the stone precipice and Arb looked back at them, and then at the box. "I hope you like long stories," he could only say drily.

    Snuffing slightly the wind to scent the two that left, Dunkeel let his jaw hang in a passive way. Loose, calm, patient. Though a part of him was not, it hungered to be down to the bone of the matter quickly. To break it open and suck the very marrow, the very truth of things.

    Actually now that his mind turned in such ways he realized something else. After all these years. . .he was hungry. Hungry enough his fellow Protectors didn't look unappetizing. Holding his hand with Fang over his stomach he sighed, "I do, but I also like large meals if you have forgotten. You wouldn't have a sick creature nearby to listen over?" He asked with mild concern.

    Vydra sat down on the floor, this sounded like it would take a while and his legs were a bit shaky after being stuck in that statue for millenia.

    But why had those two people disappeared?

    He shrugged "Well we are not going to be going anywhere so…" he did like stories so long as they made sense.

    But Dunkeel was hungry? Vydra didn't fancy watching or listening to Dunkeel tuck in to a creature whilst Zas'tel was talking.

    Arb smiled, more dry and wry. “Good point.” He took one more look at the two sedentary statues, stepped over and checked the hole in the head of the Sistros one. Reaching into a pocket, he produced a pair of see-through bags, and tossed one to the other. One had human-style food, the other, Chistori raw meat. There wasn’t much sustenance in the devastation after all, a canteen floated from his pocket and he sat down, crossing his legs, unscrewing the lid which doubled as a cup.

    He took a very deep breath.

    “Basically, the End of Time happened; the Gods of the Sith escaped the Well of the Dark Side, as the Holocron of Prophecy said it would; you’ve been asleep for thirty-five thousand years, and Darkness, well, that’s an even longer story.”

    He put a thumb up to himself. “My role was to pass the Master’s Forcesaber down to my apprentice, and through my apprentices, allow the Master to write the Holocron of Prophecy,” Arb held up the hilt, ignited it. The blade emerged crimson, when it had black, and he winced. “The weapon had to fall into the possession of the traitor, and so the Master could see the in balancing of the Force play out - he bled the crystal within, causing it to turn this colour.”

    A shrug. “Because Nouane - sorry, Dwartii - was destroyed by Abeloth, a wound was made, so we Old Ones can’t see us here... for now...” he regarded the others. “And because you four were taken out of sync, four Force relics of great power were created.” He grimaced again; one for each of them. “The traitor - the Dark One - the Sith Lord, Darth Sidious, he used your statues, and the relics, and, well, he succeeded in killing the Celestials by simply existing; without those Gods who intervened on Nouane, Abeloth could cause the Apocalypse, and then the End of Time.”

    He paused.

    “This is what the Master planned, I believe.”

    Vydra narrowed his eyes, he wasn't feeling hungry after hearing that.

    "I remember the Master or you or whoever it was taking me to the End of Time. I think it was anyway. And I thought it was truly the end, that my spirit was about to die. That I was going to feel everything dying" he spread his arms out "Then I awake here. In Hell".

    He sneered "So this was the Master's plan, allow the end to happen. Allow the deaths of countless billions all for peace. Sounds like we didn't do a very good job of protecting the galaxy like we were supposed to".

    He folded his arms and looked to Dunkeel "You see that red blade? The dark warriors calling themselves Sith carried those. So what i'm getting here is Zas'tel instead of protecting the light as he was supposed to, became corrupted by the Master and caused all this''.

    He looked at Zas'tel "This is not balance. He let the darkness rule".

    Dunkeel accepted the proffered baggy and with a tearing rip of his snout took chunk after bloody chunk as the two kept talking. "I saw the sith, Palpatine. He was in my dream and I saw the balance tip. I heard him give a name, open and raw. I saw The Master's blade burn red and kill ones like you Vydra." He looked at the dusty librarian askance for a moment before settling forward again.

    Taking another tear of meat he swallowed it down in a comforting motion. "If this is the Master's plan, or completed version of it. Perhaps he saw no good way to stop the darkness without letting it happen." Tilting his head he looked at Zas'tel, "Can you not tune the crystal once more to you? Heal the red and let it shine? Then we can get to why we are here, why we were brought forward thirty-five thousand years, but I should note another Protector had a red blade. We should not let one groups preference make us condemn another for a color."

    "Didn't Vale have a purple blade, at best? The red was removed," Arb looked down at the box. "The thing is; I was told, repeatedly, never to open the box... I was also told never to tell anyone what was in it - the Master gave me explicit instructions. He also gave me explicit instructions to not interfere, so I had to play the role of this guy."

    He pointed at himself. "He was already on the path of crime when I took his form, and he'd gotten tangled up in the Masters plans. So I just followed up those plot-points, and stepped out - took him over in the Kessel mines and saved him from dying, moved him away from this Jedi Master called Vima Da-Boda - a descendant of a Chosen One or some-such." He shrugged. He was regaling the fate of Arb Skynxnex in the prime timeline, eaten by energy spiders. In other timelines, he began a major criminal mover, acting as the right hand of Qi'ra Ananke, leader of Crimson Dawn, or as a ruler of the Coruscant underworld when Mas Amedda ruled the Imperial remnant.

    "So I didn't interfere, like I was told, or, well, I tried to not interfere."

    He looked rueful. "I think we can all agree it's pretty hard to do exactly what the Master says, am I right?"

    Dunkeel was having a right old feast, Vydra however was not hungry and didn't touch his bag. Maybe when the Chistori was done.

    "Kill ones like me?" Vydra said to Dunkeel confused "If you think I am a Jedi, sadly not. I'm still technically in exile. In spirit form I just did what I always did. Defend. Plus I don't have a blade anymore so I cannot call myself a Protector either".

    He looked at Zas'tel "And you like the Master are not providing answers to questions. You did not answer as to why we have been brought here. You also have not answered the question as to whether that crystal.in that blade can be turned".

    "And as to the Master? As far as I am concerned he doomed the galaxy, made the darkness win. There is always a way to stop the darkness, it's called the light. Sadly it seems nobody in the light was able to counter it. That is true balance".

    "As to the Master, I hope whatever Hell he is in he burns in it".

    Dunkeel snorted in spite of himself, shaking his head at the situation and what was being said. "You are right. My memory wandered to the dream, not the reality." Sealing the empty baggy he rubbed his snout. Pondering the situation and the minced words these two were fond of.

    "Vydra - I know his name, just as I spoke yours despite Joren having already done what he had to you. Would you in your suspicion condemn him to the fate that drove you to death so quickly? What happened to the Vydra that balked when we spoke of how to handle bad students? The one that balked at my deigning to cull them?" Letting that sink in for a second he turned his attention back to Zas'tel. "And you, a river of experience, but the same soul. Speak the simple answers, but do not ignore the hard ones. Box, Heart, and Soul. If we are to do better all must be laid out and weighed now."

    Zas'tel paused at the heat in Dunkeel's voice. "I'll try my best, but I want to answer Vydra first, if I can." He looked and felt genuinely apologetic in the Force, as open as he could be.

    "I was told to bring your statues here, at the End of Time - the Master said that he would do the Protectors right. The Gods of the Sith are ravaging the galaxy and this is one of the few safe spots left." He indicated the lightsaber. "I don't know how to heal a crystal. I've heard some Jedi can cleanse it, but this one contains the Master's Eye. So, I'm reluctant to stick my head in there and rummage around."

    "The box is said to contain a new Holocron of Prophecy, for the next timeline." He felt like he was betraying the Master, but it had been thirty-five thousand years. He needed to live again. "Which I thought was impossible, but that's what the Master was trying to achieve, I think - a timeline with no Darkness."

    Zas'tel it seemed was not happy with Dunkeel's tone. It seemed the Chistori was getting quite passionate. And was he thinking that he was talking actually about him, not the Master?

    More confusion abound.

    He looked at Dunkeel "After what I have done before my travels and during I would be considered a bad student. So if you want to cull me have at it, but prepare for what it will do to your conscience. And the fact that you will become a murderer like I did".

    Back to Zas'tel "I've done terrible things and seeing what the Master has done throughout the millennia I am not surprised by anything anymore. And since I am without a blade and probably will not be able to craft one I could take it and try to cleanse it" he shrugged "It's worth a go anyway".

    "If we are to survive against these Sith Gods then you will need an attacker" he pointed at Dunkeel "and a defender" he pointed at himself "but I need something to help defend hence asking for the blade".

    "But also it seemed, maybe that was my mission too. Maybe to take that box through the World Between Worlds with the apprentices and start anew. The timeline with no darkness. But because I chose exile it passed to you, or maybe you were destined to have it anyway".

    "Or, perhaps. It was just a contingency. Always waiting for the one that would show a better future than the others." Shaking his head he nodded at Vydra and Zas'tel. "Let him peer into the mind of the Master's Eye, but know it was tainted by the traitor with red flame hair. You may see lies as well as truths."

    Walking over he placed a hand onto the box. "Then we shall call Heart, meet your two people and look inside the box possibly." Nodding at that notion he turned to sit on the thing and wait for what was about to happen.

    Zas'tel paused. "I don't know how far the Master saw..." He eyed the Forcesaber, "Or how much he still sees."

    He looked hesitant. "If you want me to peer inside the Kyber, I'd appreciate you two coming with me. I don't want to get lost inside... not with Darth Sidious having held it for a time..."

    Carefully, Zas'tel reached inside his cloak and removed a lightsaber hilt. It was black and silver. "This belonged to the Chosen One, it has a blue blade - battery power." He held it to Vydra. "If you want it, you can have it - I recovered it from a grave on Kashyyyk." Indeed, it used to belong to Anakin Skywalker, and then his son Luke, and then his wife, Mara, before they left it on the Wookiee homeworld as a memorial".

    Vydra stood and took the lightsaber hilt. The blade being blue….that was not him, that was Joren's colour. But it would do, at least he had something to defend himself with.

    "Thank you" he said with a smile "I'll try and look after this one as it seems this blade has rather an illustrious history" he attached it to his belt.

    But Zas'tel it seemed had gotten confused. The Kyber, was that the box or the Masters blade? Vydra had suggested taking it but it seemed Zas'tel was taking it upon himself to dive in.

    He looked over at Dunkeel sitting on the box "Well let's hope we get a peek at the box and find out about the two people. Still more questions than answers".

    "What do you think? Shall we take a deep dive into the dark?".

    Closing his eyes Dunkeel listened and then, reaching out he tapped the sky, calling for Heart to come to them. He wondered if after all these years his ship had survived, stayed pure, stayed true. It was a single word, a simple hiss into the Force that called his ship to him, here and now.

    Opening his eyes he nodded at the blade exchange and the talking. "Let us get to know these two. That is next. That is first."

    Zas’tel realised what he’d done. “Oops.” He reached in his coat and held two more lightsaber hilts. “I have a green one and a violet one?”

    “The latest generation of Chosen Ones had a grove on Kashyyyk where they put their lightsabers when they died,” he explained. “I collected them before the enemy swallowed the world in darkness.”

    He shrugged. “I thought they were too important to just abandon.”

    Vydra raised his eyebrow, was Zas'tel stalling?

    Why was he talking about lightsabers?

    "I think I will keep the one I have, thank you" it was tempting to ask for the green blade but this blade he had seemed pretty famous.

    "As Dunkeel said we have other important things to deal with. And important question still need answering especially what is in that box and the two people we saw".

    "So stop stalling and let's get to it".

    Waiting he nodded as they both spoke, "Zas'tel. Time for uncomfortable truths, let us meet these two. Protectors are Guardians of Balance. Now let us know them."

    TAG: @Sinrebirth , @Mitth_Fisto
     
  24. Sinrebirth

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

    Registered:
    Nov 15, 2004
    IC: Zas'tel
    Looking up

    "They're two darkness's, they've been chasing the Box. Buffoons, by and large, but being manipulated into helping the Darkness with it's goals." Zas'tel looked concerned. "I sent them to find the Box, to hide my connection to it... told him, and Palpatine of course, that it was something useful, but all Palpatine cared about was the Epitaph Games and using a Force Wound to Change his fate..."

    He looked wry.

    He held up the Forcesaber.

    "Alright, what am I doing first?" He gestured to the Box. "Opening this? Or are we diving in to the Eye?" He looked at Vydra, who was being pretty pointed in his questions. "I appreciate you don't trust me - or anyone, probably, and I am not judging you for that," his gaze took in Dunkeel. "But I was told to take the Master's weapon into the future, so his Eye could write the Holocron of Prophecy - and to not interfere, either."

    He shrugged.

    "The Master loved his cryptic instructions, and I trusted him," Arb's tone was stressed. "I've spent millennia body hopping - had part of my own soul get up and leave me." He released a breath, placed a hand on his head. "I'm sorry, it's been a bit much."

    TAG: @Mitth_Fisto, @Jerjerrod-Lennox
    ---
    IC: The Netherworld of the Force

    Where isn't relevant, and nor is when, let alone why, so shall we go with how?

    It was said that Death was eternal.

    Arguably, it was.

    It was, mainly, timeless.

    Within the Netherworld, one could exist forever, in one's nonexistence.

    If you took a living person and trapped them here, they would never age.

    Because, of course, time was also dead here.

    There was no sense of what was true, where they were, and the fragments of existences within spoke of many different where's.

    How?

    Well, they'd been pushed here.

    A very long time ago.

    But they wouldn't have any sense of that.

    Merely this shadowy realm, a mirror image of their old, a cracked and jagged version of Nouane City.

    They were Joren and Vale, and this is where they ended up.

    Not together, nor apart, just... here.

    [​IMG]

    Yes, it looked similar to Remnicore.

    We'll get to that.

    TAG: @HanSolo29, @QueenSabe7 (open TAG if they wish to respond)
    ---

    Inside Sistros

    The statue of Sistros was a curious one, because the Young Palpatine felt a natural affinity to the political genius. Now, the connotations to that did not belong to the original man named Sistros, Joren Graal, because he was a caricature of a concept. The last leader of the Protectors before the Twilight Wars - someone who made various decisions, and had his legacy twisted, by narratives, and legends, and folklore.

    The concept of it stepping into protect a Light, well, that remained.

    It had been in-place all along, coded to Graal... and later to his children, and lineage.

    Much as a Wound in the Force carried through his bloodline as an Echo...

    ... so too did the potential for a Graal - later, after a typo became an official record, Graul - to need protection in a moment of despair.

    One did have to wonder who ended up inside Sistros...

    ... let alone when...

    Or how?

    TAG: @HanSolo29
    ---

    The two, above the Twilight Graveyard

    It was a poetic name for the place where the Protectors had failed, and Abeloth had destroyed Nouane for it.

    Indeed, the Chaos Goddess had only escaped her prison in the Maw because of the Change the Protectors caused.

    But here they were.

    The two of them, all over again.

    It had been a while.

    Darth Caedus stood, peering down.

    Besides him was Darkness, as he always was.

    The two of them had stepped back so as not to be seen by the Protector Masters, and they looked back to the third person present.

    "Balance, right?"

    Caedus said, drily.

    Doubtful.

    Darkness's voice was snide.

    TAG: @darthbernael
     
  25. AgentViper007

    AgentViper007 Force Ghost star 7

    Registered:
    Mar 9, 2005
    IC: Vydra Delomeux
    Location: Hell?


    Vydra listened to Zas'tel as he explained it all and yet still he was dithering. He thought they had chosen to delve into the Eye but now he was giving them a choice.

    Eye or box?

    "You know this is why nothing ever gets done" he said with a sigh "Too much posturing about, too many riddles and questions. Not enough answers and decisions".

    "And as to the point of me not trusting anyone, no I don't. But I trust Dunkeel more than I do you. I'm sorry you had to body hop and lost part of your soul. But the fact is that you chose this path ehen you left the group like me when I chose exile"

    "Except your path was laced in darkness. Poor Dunkeel has been stuck in a statue for whoever knows how long and probbably has no idea of what's happened" he looked to the Chistori "I have no idea of what went on in there".

    Vydra folded his arms "Now I thought the consensus was we delve into the Eye, however before we delve down that particular hole since there is a chance we could get lost in there perhaps the box is the safest option?"

    He looked to Dunkeel.

    TAG: @Sinrebirth , @Mitth_Fisto