This is a creepy ending to a creepy story, but then it couldn't have gone any other way. As I predicted, Darth Maladi finishes off the surviving 'Skitees. I have heard it said that the opposite of love isn't hatred, it's indifference, and while I'm not always entirely certain I believe that, it certainly applies here. The 'Skitees don't even manage to get a dramatic showdown scene: Darth Maladi kills them all in business like fashion, as though she is marking an item off her "to-do" list. It's a summary, not even a scene. Like Ka Shiya--like, it seems, near everyone unfortunate enough to encounter her--they never even had a chance. The 'Skitee who seemed most likely to have the hero's role--the clever bioengineer--doesn't even get singled out from the others in the carnage. And while Darth Maladi does express a need to eliminate him as a potential rival, there isn't much emotion behind that need. She doesn't care enough to bother hating him. While I know she has a goal, and it involves power, it still seems, as she plays with her latest nasty toy, that she is like a child pulling the wings off a fly for the sheer mean fun of it. As for the echo of her father's voice, it turns out (as you hinted in your response to my previous comment) that it wasn't actually her father at all. Darth Maladi may be terrible, but she is not the master: that would be Darth Krayt, and just as he manipulated her that final day of her life as Malincha, he is doing so now. But this time, she makes a lightning quick recovery from the past, and any attendant shame, and figures out what he's up to with the Memory Walk without his having to openly show his hand. This time, she is the cold and calculating Sith he made her into, and she is already thinking of how to use this same technique against her rivals--and even against Darth Krayt himself. But while she seems to relish that thought, it's interesting that you note that she couldn't ever actually do it. It's hard to tell whether she doesn't know that yet here--or if she is already deluding herself. It wouldn't be the first time: I read back over the first two posts to catch up on the story, and in the opening, she reflects on the fate of planets, of a "gas giant grabbing too much to itself", and individuals who take too much from their environment--and then instantly, and quite conveniently, decides this doesn't apply to the One Sith. The parallels could not be more obvious to me, but she honestly seems not to see them. (I also noted that in the opening the astromech droid is described as chirping like a "distressed avian"--which ties in as neat as a knot with that ending where the convors finally appear.) As Raissa Baiard noted, Star Wars is a story of redemption--but that redemption is not available for characters like Darth Maladi. She does not have, even after years of ill deeds, a shred of goodness still lurking inside her. She is the true villain who needs to be dead by the time the movie credits roll. (I don't actually know what her fate is in the Legacy comics, but I recognize the type of character she is). More importantly, you have to be open to the possibility of redemption in order to receive it--and that she would never do. Finally, I apologize for my delay in leaving this comment--I was about to get to it some months back, but then my dog died, and I wasn't up for dealing with a story this pitch black dark. But better late than not at all, and I'm here now. And once again, thank you for writing this story for the challenge!