1. In Memory of LAJ_FETT: Please share your remembrances and condolences HERE

Beyond - Legends Forgotten Secrets (OC) 5,800 ABY - NaNoWriMo story (updated Ch.13 - 2/10)

Discussion in 'Fan Fiction- Before, Saga, and Beyond' started by 92SE-R, Dec 3, 2013.

  1. 92SE-R

    92SE-R Jedi Master star 3

    Apr 15, 2005
    Title: Forgotten Secrets
    Author: 92SE-R, some writing by friends
    Timeframe: after 5,800 ABY
    Characters: Originals (see Dramatis Personae)
    Notes: This originally started out as a Dark Side RPG campaign, but life got in the way. I worked too hard to let it die. LOL
    Summary: The year is 5,800 ABY, once again the Sith have a grip on over half the galaxy. The Jedi have been forced to go underground. The Mandalorians have formed the Manadalorian Empire and control half the galaxy. Hutts have been hunted to near extinction. Two Sith Lords that were in cryo for hundreds of years are free once more, and they have a secret that could change the fate of the galaxy.

    Dramatis Personae:
    Kel Alaris (Alliance: Mandalorian)(Species: Deshade)
    Varo Taan (Alliance: Mandalorian)(Species: Human)
    Rakno Mirlik – Mandalore the Victor (Alliance: Mandalorian)(Species: Draethos)
    Zeik-Vergif (Alliance: Sith)(Species: Yarkora)
    Zentaris Aeterna (Alliance: Sith)(Species: Pau’an)
    Torik Vaal (Alliance: Sith)(Species: Keshiri)
    Darth Serkan (Alliance: None)(Species: Bothan)
    Darth Valere (Alliance: None)(Species: Human)
    Master Slyfer (Alliance: Sith)
    Azalus the Hutt (Alliance: None)(Species: Hutt)

    Timeline (yes this serves a purpose in the story, LOL)
    4,600 ABY - Coalition of Systems is founded
    4,980 ABY - Dark Brotherhood of the Sith is formed
    Coalition of Systems starts experiencing internal conflicts
    Mandalorians begin to expand territory in the Outer Rim
    5,000 ABY - Massacre at Gargon occurs
    Mandalorians hold Jedi responsible for Massacre at Gargon
    5,005 ABY - Mandalorians begin attacking Coalition ships that enter Mandalorian controlled space
    5,100 ABY - Sith forces begins attacking Coalition of Systems
    5,125 ABY - Battle of Prakith begins
    5,126 ABY - Battle of Prakith ends, with the Sith defeating the Coalition
    Sith begin full push for control of Byss Run
    Battle of Keeara Major
    Battle of Symbia
    Battle of Koros
    Battle of Kuar
    5,127 ABY - Battle of Jerrilek
    Coalition of Systems pulls all forces from The Deep Core
    Coalition of systems establish bases on Endor and Javin
    5,128 ABY - Mandalorians take control of Prelemian Trade Route in the Outer Rim
    Mandalore the Expander ceases push for territories, focusing on internal affairs
    5,129 ABY - Sith begin assault on Core worlds
    5,135 ABY - First Battle for Coruscant begins
    Sith block hyperspace lanes going to Coruscant
    5,136 ABY - Sith withdrawl from attacking Coruscant after suffering heavy casualties
    5,138 ABY - Second Battle for Coruscant begins
    Sith Dark Army successfuly lands troops on Coruscant
    5,139 ABY - Sith control southern hemisphere of Coruscant
    5,140 ABY - Sith assassins kill the Chairman of the Coallition on Coruscant
    Coalition Military Secretary takes control of Coallition forces
    5,141 ABY - Military Secretary orders evacuation of Coalition military from Coruscant
    Exodus from Coruscant begins
    Sith destroy Jedi Temple with orbital bombardment
    Sith send a warning message for civilians to stay on Coruscant
    Orbiting Sith fleet attacks all ships fleeing Coruscant
    Hundreds of ships escape Coruscant and Sith blockade
    5,145 ABY - Sith forces gain control of most Core worlds
    5,147 ABY - Dark Brotherhood High Council makes Prakith seat of Sith power
    5,150 ABY - Mandalore The Expander is killed, replaced by unknown Mandalore
    5,151 ABY - Coalition of Systems holds off Sith incursions in Colony and Inner Rim sectors
    5,200 ABY - Dark Brotherhood cease attacks against the Coalition
    Sith focus on hunting Jedi specifically
    5,387 ABY - Rakno Harnili born on Thosa
    5,399 ABY - Rakno Harnili sent to Nal Hutta as a slave
    5,400 ABY - Dark Brotherhood civil war begins
    5,405 ABY - Coalition of Systems sends a small fleet to edges of the Core to test Sith strength
    Fleet under Darth Reaper destroys Coalition fleet at Corann
    5,407 ABY - Rakno Harnili and five other fighters escape from Nal Hutta
    5,410 ABY - Rakno Harnili lands on Mandalore
    5,425 ABY - Darth Rilus kills Darth Reaper, taking control of his fleet
    5,510 ABY - Rakno Harnili is adopted by clan Mirlik, changes name to Rakno Mirlik
    5,500 ABY - Forty Sith Lords gather at Prakith
    Treaty of Power is signed at Prakith
    5,550 ABY - Rakno Mirlik kills an unknown Mandalore
    Rakno Mirlik takes the title of Mandalore The Victor
    5,560 ABY - Mandalore The Victor unifies the clans
    The Mandalorian Empire is established
    5,575 ABY – Zentaris Aeterna is born on Utapau
    5,580 ABY - Mandalore The Victor leads Mandalorian fleet into Hutt Space
    Mando-Hutt Wars begin
    5,585 ABY – Zentaris Aeterna is kidnapped by pirates and sold into slavery in Hutt space
    5,600 ABY - Sith High council at Prakith declares unification of Sith forces once again
    Sith Dark Alliance is formed
    5,625 ABY - Massive Dark Alliance fleet enters Colony space
    Coalition fleet suffers heavy casualties, falls back to Inner Rim
    5,649 ABY – Zentaris Aeterna is rescued from Hutts by the Mandalorian Empire
    Zentaris Aeterna begins working for the Skirata clan
    5,650 ABY - Mando-Hutt Wars end
    Mandalore The Victor takes control of Hutt space, bringing it under the Mandalorian Empire
    Bounty placed on all Hutts in Mandalorian space
    5,675 ABY - Coalition of Systems disbands
    Jedi Order goes underground
    5,699 ABY – Zentaris Aeterna begins assisting with negotiation between the Mandalorian and Sith
    Zentaris is handed over to the Sith as part of the negotiations
    5,700 ABY - Mandalorian Empire controls Outer Rim to Corellian Run hyperspace route
    Sith Dark Alliance and Mandalorian Empire sign peace treaty
    5,765 ABY – Kel Alaris is born
    5,768 ABY – Zeik-Vergif born on Nar Shadaa
    5,776 ABY – Varo Beviin born on Concordia
    5,777 ABY – Torik Vaal born on Kesh
    5,779 ABY – Kel Alaris’ family murdered
    5,784 ABY – Sa’Dar Beviin leaves family
    5,787 ABY – Taan clan adopts Dramech and Varo Beviin
    5,800 ABY - Sith patrol spots opening in the ground on Kalist
    Sith High Council dispatches archaeological team
    Archaeological team stops transmissions

    I'll probably post up the first chapter here in a couple of days. Just wanted to get the base for it set up. This was my story for the most recent NaNoWriMo campaign, but I hope to finish it here on the boards.
  2. 92SE-R

    92SE-R Jedi Master star 3

    Apr 15, 2005
    AN: Here is the promised first chapter, sorry for the delay. Let me know if you want to be PM'd when it's updated. Thanks for reading, and of course all Star Wars stuff belongs to Disney.


    Chapter 1

    Deep in Mandalorian space sits one of the last vestiges of the ancient Sith. Korriban has been a seed of the dark side for millennia, and in more recent memory has been transformed into an embassy planet for the Sith Dark Alliance. There Sith Acolytes are able to learn from ancient manuscripts in the Grand Library, learn from their Masters, or just wait until they are deemed worthy of becoming an apprentice. A few of the Sith on Korriban fall into none of those categories, instead being used by the Dark Alliance as mere tools. Today, however, that is about to change for a select few…


    “The following beings have been summoned to the Grand Chamber,” the speakers around the temple boom, “Zentaris Aeterna, Torik Vaal, and Zeik-Vergif. Report there at once.”

    Serving his duties as a librarian and archivist while his master was away, Zentaris lifted his Pau’an body to its full stature. He closed the book he had been reading in the far reaches of the Grand Library, and hastily made his way to the Grand Chamber.


    Sparring with another acolyte in an open area of the temple, Torik Vaal, a male Kishiri in his twenties, dropped his guard for a split second as he heard his name. His opponent saw the distraction and struck, hitting him in the arm. Torik growled with the sting of the training blade and glared at his younger opponent.
    “You did that on purpose.”

    “I took advantage of the situation. You shouldn’t have been so easily distracted,” replied the young human.

    “When I return from the Grand Chambers we’ll continue this match, and I won’t be so easy on you.” Torik said with a smile.

    The two faced each other and bowed. They put the training blades back in their place and Torik clipped his lightsaber to his belt, heading toward the Grand Chambers.


    Zeik-Vergif had just finished cleaning and reassembling his sniper rifle when the call came over the speaker system. The Yarkora gently slid the rifle into its carrying case, hoisted it over his shoulder, and jogged to the Grand Chambers.


    The three reached the Grand Chambers within a few minutes of each other. Although they had seen each other in passing before, they had never spoken to one another. They now stood in the antechamber, waiting silently to enter the main chamber. The human behind the desk was probably close to seventy standard years old, but Zentaris remembered when he first came to Korriban when he was just a teenager. The human, Majesh, Zentaris thought his name was, had such high hopes when he first came. Of course he was given a master within a few months, and he passed the trials to become a full Sith Lord.

    ‘Look at him now,’ thought Zentaris, ‘a secretary for the Sith. Where are your hopes and dreams now, young one?’

    Majesh recognized Zentaris the moment he walked in, but said nothing to the Pau’an. He merely looked him over and snorted in contempt. A faint noise came from his desk and he looked at his screen before nodding in response.

    “The High Council is ready for you now.” He said curtly.

    Zentaris took the lead of the small procession, with Torik looking a bit perturbed at being cut off. Zeik-Vergif motioned for Torik to go before him. As the three entered the Grand Chamber, they noticed the lack of beings in the massive room. It had at least forty high back chairs sitting along the walls, but none were filled. Instead, on the other side of the room, some thirty feet away, there was a holo-projection of ten Sith Lords. As the acolytes walked closer to the projection, the slightly hazed images turned to look at the beings that were approaching them. Each council member’s image stood about twelve feet tall, no doubt to make them look imposing. Finally one of the council members spoke.

    “We have summoned you three acolytes because you have caught the attention of the High Council. Two of you have the potential to be great Force users for our Alliance. The other… well, you have skills that are needed as well.”
    Zeik-Vergif bowed. “It is an honor to serve my Sith masters to the best of my ability.”

    “Yes,” the hooded figure continued, “We were disappointed when it was discovered that your master wasted so much time trying to bring out your potential, only to end in failure. We have hopes that you will become the assassin he wishes you to be.”

    “We have not contacted you to bring this up, however.” Another member interjected. “We have more pressing matters. About a month ago a team of Sith and Mandalorian archaeologists discovered something on Kalist. The team was transmitting regular updates about their findings, until about a week ago. All attempts to contact the team have been unfruitful. We need you to go figure out why.”

    “Pardon me, my Lords, but Kalist is in the Deep Core. Why send us? We are in the Outer Rim. Wouldn’t it be faster to send a team from Prakith?” Zentaris offered.

    “Ah, Zentaris. Quite possibly the oldest acolyte we have seen in our lifetime. You are quite bold in questioning our reasoning for sending you. Do you think that we do not have star charts? Do you think we don’t realize where you are right now?”

    The condescending tone in the Sith’s voice was unmistakable.

    “Of course not my Lords, I meant no disrespect.” Zentaris offered with a slight bow.

    “It is fortunate for you that you show promise.”

    “The reason we have decided to send you three,” a different council member began, “is because we are not yet convinced that this requires a Sith Lord’s attention. There is also the fact, that since this was a joint expedition, the current Mandalore has demanded that he send his own team as well. We are sending you to Mandalore to pick up this… team of Mandalorians. Once you pick them up, you are to head to Kalist and contact the archaeologists. It is possible that they have no idea they’re not transmitting anymore.”

    “Also,” the first council member spoke again, “you are to bring us anything of significance that you find. A shuttle will be waiting for you at the temple spaceport. May the Force serve you well.”

    Zentaris, Torik, and Zeik-Vergif all bowed as the holograms disappeared. Walking out of the main chamber, they said nothing to each other. Once they were out in the open grounds of the temple, Zentaris looked to the other two beings he would be partnered with.

    “I think it would be prudent if we went to our quarters and grabbed some supplies.”

    “Agreed.” Torik replied.

    “So, we should meet at the spaceport in about half an hour?” Zeik-Vergif asked.

    Both Zentaris and Torik nodded in agreement. The small group split up, each heading in their own direction.

    As they walked away, another figure emerged from the shadows of one of the pillars. Pulling out a comlink, he looked around to make sure no one was close.

    “They have their assignment. They’re on their way to Kalist.”

    He quickly turned the com off and put it back in his pocket, doing a double take to make sure no one was watching as he left the area.


    As agreed, the trio met at the spaceport just outside the temple within half an hour. The shuttle was easy to spot, given that it was the only ship with the symbol for the Sith High Council on it. The ship was a sleek design, being about fifty feet long. On each wing were the atmospheric engines, and in the rear were the sub light and hyperdrive engines. The engines were warming up as the group approached the ship. The pilot was waiting by the ramp and said nothing as the three walked up the ramp. Once the last one was on board, he raised the ramp and headed to the bridge.

    The quarters for guests weren’t posh, but they weren’t sparse either. There was room enough on the ship for at least eight people to have their own quarters. After the three Sith put their belongings in their quarters, they too went to the bridge. Zentaris was the last to arrive, and was sitting down as the pilot finally received clearance for departure.

    “Please make sure you’re buckled,” was all the pilot offered from over his shoulder.

    With a slight shudder, the ship lifted off the ground and made it to the vacuum of space in a short amount of time. The pilot looked at the navi-computer to make sure the proper hyperspace route was plugged in for Mandalore. Once he received the green light from the computer he pulled the levers back, and the ship jumped to hyperspace.
  3. earlybird-obi-wan

    earlybird-obi-wan Chosen One star 6

    Aug 21, 2006
    A great start and PM or tag please.
    Love your names for the characters
    'Vergif' is 'poison' in Dutch;)
    92SE-R likes this.
  4. WarmNyota_SweetAyesha

    WarmNyota_SweetAyesha Chosen One star 8

    Aug 31, 2004
    Hi. I was intrigued by your detailed timeline of major events up to the present =D= Already there is an air of mystery because of the loss of contact. [face_thinking] I will look forward to seeing the Mandalorian end. :D
    92SE-R likes this.
  5. 92SE-R

    92SE-R Jedi Master star 3

    Apr 15, 2005
    Thanks. I had no idea! LOL. Most of the main characters - Kel, Varo, Zen, Torik, and Zeik - were names my friends picked for the characters, which they played for a couple of sessions.

    Thank you. I know the timeline seemed a bit long winded, but I wanted to make sure to establish the current political environment of the galaxy. As for the Mandalorian end, I hope I can live up to my own expectations, which were highly influenced by Karen Traviss.

    AN: I will probably be updated the story on Wednesdays, and not multiple times per week. I did that on one of my past fan fics, and I burned myself out.
  6. 92SE-R

    92SE-R Jedi Master star 3

    Apr 15, 2005
    AN: Ok, I couldn't wait until next week for chapter 2. I CAN wait until next Friday for chapter 3 though. *insert evil laugh here*

    Nyota's Heart


    Chapter 2

    Not far from the Salin Corridor, Mandalore was a typical looking land and ocean planet with a populated orbiting moon. Unlike most planets, however, Mandalore had a long history of ferocity in the galaxy. The most recent ruler, Mandalore the Victor, was also one of the longest ruling in the planet's history. Mandalore the Victor’s true name was Rakno Mirlik, a Draethos and thus long lived being. The name he adopted after being formally adopted by clan Mirlik in 5510. Before that, he was known as Rakno Harnili.

    Born on Thosa in 5387, Rakno lived on his planet for a relatively short time. In 5399, he was taken as a slave by the Hutts. Given his species’ adaptability for fighting, the Hutt that purchased him used him as a prize fighter in different arenas. After a match on Nal Hutta in 5407, Rakno found his opportunity for escape. As he was being escorted back to his cell from a recent victory, Rakno turned and open palmed the one human guard with an upper cut to the nose, instantly killing him. Before the other guard could react, another fighter jumped to Rakno’s aid. He killed the other guard, and took his rifle. There were only four other fighters in the holding pits, and Rakno, along with the other fighter, quickly let them out of their cells. Although Rakno was barely twenty standard years, his skills as a fighter, as well as his respect for fellow fighters, earned him his own measure of trust and respect. The six slave fighters made their way out from the arena and parted ways.

    Rakno was able to quietly board a transport ship, but he didn’t know where it was heading. He left that cargo ship just inside Hutt space on another planet, and boarded another vessel. It took about three years, but he finally made his way to Mandalore. Although he had never personally met a Mandalorian up to that point in his life, he always remembered the stories his father told. Stories about the honor code they lived by and how they took care of their own, regardless of the species they were. Something inside his gut told him this is where he was meant to be. Although not formally part of any clan, Rakno fought for several different clans over the next one hundred years.

    One of the clans, Clan Mirlik, seemed to invite him to stay more often than the others, as well as invite him to fight for the clan. Eventually the clan set up a modest residence for him to use. They enjoyed his company, and he theirs. It was a bit odd, it seemed, for him to witness the birth and death of the clan members, but after a while he became a trusted friend to many. Around 5510 that all changed. The clan had a meeting and agreed that Rakno had more than earned a spot within the clan. Furthermore, if there was a clan member that could carry on the name for longer than a mere seventy or eighty years, it was obviously Rakno. It was only another ten years before he became the head of the Mirlik clan, and in 5550 he killed the ruling Mandalore in honorable combat, and took the mantle of Mandalore. Over the next ten years he unified the Mandalorian clans under one banner, The Mandalorian Empire. Not forgetting what he suffered at the hand of the Hutts, in 5580 he launched an all out attack against the Hutts. Finally, the Mandalorians once again had a worthy cause for war. This time, though, the Mandalore himself was leading the assault. After a long and grueling series of battles on different fronts and worlds, Rakno finally conquered Hutt space in 5650. His hatred for Hutts was so great, that Rakno placed a one hundred thousand credit bounty on all Hutts. Rakno returned to Mandalore and began expanding the Empire once again.

    It had been one hundred years since the Sith signed a treaty with Mandalore the Victor. As he stood at the window, looking out over the capital city, Rakno thought back to those days. Once they had been at war with the entire galaxy it seemed, and now the Sith were coming to Mandalore once again, but this time on a different mission. They were going to pick up his most trusted General and one more Mandalorian of his choosing. The treaty between the Sith and Mandalorians had always been an uneasy one, but now, with the disappearance of his archaeological team, the treaty was again being strained.

    The General he chose, Kel Alaris, and his Captain, Varo Taan, sat across the room from Rakno. Kel Alaris was a typical Dashade on the outside, standing roughly six and a half feet tall and weighing well over three hundred pounds. Inside, though, he was a different being all together. Tragedy shaped his early childhood and molded him into the Mandalorian he was today. Varo Taan, a human of average height and weight, was a tenacious and dedicated Mandalorian. There was a history between the two of them, but, like any good soldier, they tried to not let it get in the way of military affairs.

    Dressed in his full battle beskar, helmet included, Rakno was an intimidating sight. Even though General Alaris easily outweighed Rakno, he had been around long enough to gain the respect of nearly every Mandalorian currently alive.

    The door to the throne room opened, with four Mandos escorting three beings. Rakno looked them over. A Pau’an, probably a couple hundred years old himself, accompanied by a young Keshiri, and a Yarkora that was probably in his mid thirties, if he has to guess. He walked from the window, his cape flowing in line, and privately commed the four Mandos still standing by the Sith delegation.

    “You may leave us.”

    Without hesitation the four turned and left the room, closing the door behind them.

    “So, I understand that our team of archaeologists has gone missing on Kalist.” Rakno voiced through his helmet's speaker system. “I’m really not surprised at the ineptitude of the Sith in this regard. It’s amazing that your leaders haven’t killed themselves off, after so many years.”

    “The Sith Alliance has become stronger, and nearly wiped the Jedi from the galaxy. Soon there will be none of them left.” Torik interjected.

    Rakno laughed, his voice filling the room.

    “Young and naïve Sith. Your history is full of your empires collapsing from within. It is only a matter of time before it does so again, or is brought down from the outside.”

    “Is that a threat, Mando?” Torik shot back.

    “It is a simple observation, hut’uun. And you do well to show me the proper respect, or your master will have to run a DNA test to identify your remains. Tayli’bac? (Got it?)

    “My apologies, Mandalore.”

    “You are here at my request. I have learned, through certain channels, that you are trying to determine why our team went missing. As such, I will be sending my own team to join in your search. This is one of my Generals, Kel Alaris. And next to him is Captain Varo Taan.”

    Kel Alaris stood there in full armor, nearly as imposing looking as the Mandalore himself. Varo Taan, also in full armor, tilted his head in a slight bow.

    “They will act as my eyes and ears on this mission. I have full confidence in them both. Without them on your ship, you might not make it out of Mandalorian space alive. Now get your aruetiise shebs off my planet.”

    Rakno turned again to the window overlooking the city. As the group filed out of the room, Rakno called to Kel.

    “General Alaris, one moment, if you will.”

    “Of course, my Mandalore.”

    Varo turned to Kel, but the Dashade nodded in the direction of the Sith.

    “Make sure you escort them to the shuttle. I’ll be there shortly.”

    “Yes, sir.”

    Kel shut the doors and turned to Rakno, who started to remove his helmet.

    “I don’t trust the Sith, General.”

    “Neither do I, Mandalore, but we need to find out what happened to our team.”

    “Agreed. For now, treat them no different than you would treat a delegate, albeit with a bit less respect than you would. They are just acolytes after all.”

    “How can you tell?”

    “I know of one of them, and he has never been selected to take the trials for a Sith Lord. It stands to reason that the others are the same rank. It matters very little at this point though. Report what you find at your earliest convenience.”

    “Yes, Mandalore.”

    Kel bowed at the waist, turned on his heels, and left the throne room. He found the Sith shuttle at the landing bay, and boarded the vessel. Making his way to the bridge, he found the pilot going through all the necessary pre-flight checks and warm ups.

    “Ready when you are.” The pilot said.

    Kel nodded to the pilot and opened the com to the tower.

    “This is General Alaris aboard the Sith shuttle. We are ready for departure.”

    “Tower One to General Alaris, you are cleared for travel. Happy hunting.”

    "Oya!" Kel said, with a slap on the pilot's back.

    The pilot lifted the shuttle from the landing pad, as he had done countless times before on different planets, and took the shuttle into orbit. Keying in the route to Kalist, it was only a few minutes before the stars blurred as the ship entered hyperspace.
    earlybird-obi-wan likes this.
  7. WarmNyota_SweetAyesha

    WarmNyota_SweetAyesha Chosen One star 8

    Aug 31, 2004
    Great contest of wills. Rakno set a fierce tone with the Sith delegation but it fits very well. Doesn't feel blustery or arrogant, given his rank and many many more years of life experience. And he's right about the Sith being their own worst enemy :p It also seems a very necessary precaution having Kel and Varo along. I am enjoying the continued air of intrigue. =D=
    earlybird-obi-wan likes this.
  8. earlybird-obi-wan

    earlybird-obi-wan Chosen One star 6

    Aug 21, 2006
    a great insight in how you described Rakno's history. I like him as being a honest and great warrior. Waiting to see what the Mandalorian - Sith combination will give
    Nyota's Heart likes this.
  9. 92SE-R

    92SE-R Jedi Master star 3

    Apr 15, 2005
    Thanks. It's been thousands of years, but the basic Sith instincts are still "Me First!" LOL

    I wanted Rakno to be a seasoned warrior, but have a certain quality that made him a good leader as well. I could probably write a story based solely on his life up to this point in my timeline. [face_thinking]


    AN:Next update will be Friday, as promised, and soon the action will take off! After looking at what I have written, I will probably be posting on Tuesdays AND Fridays. Turns out I had more than I thought.
    Also, as a side note, for the most part, the interaction between the main characters, the battles they fight, and the things they do, is what actually happened in game during the RPG sessions. There are some things I embellished a bit for the novelization, but it stays pretty true to the sessions otherwise. I will definitely have a note saying where the RPG sessions ended, and then it will be all from my head. LOL
  10. 92SE-R

    92SE-R Jedi Master star 3

    Apr 15, 2005
    Nyota's Heart


    Chapter 3

    During the journey from Mandalore to Kalist, the beings from the different groups tended to stay to themselves. The Mandalorians were working out, sparring, or working on their armor. The Sith, on the other hand, were usually meditating and studying. Every so often Torik and Zentaris would have a lightsaber duel in the cargo bay, but never with their blades at full power. It seemed that unless they passed each other in the halls, or sat in the ships small kitchen area, they didn’t see much of each other. The tension between General Kel Alaris and Captain Varo Taan also seemed to be perceptible, even to the pilot of the ship. At no point, however, did the Sith ever bring that up in conversation. A little over a week after they left Mandalore, they all felt the ship slightly lurch, a sign that they had dropped out of hyperspace.

    “Make sure your gear is stowed and secured,” came the pilot’s voice over the ship wide speaker system, “we’ll be entering Kalist’s atmosphere in the next thirty minutes.”

    It didn’t take but a fraction of that time for everyone to secure their things and make their way to the bridge. They each took a seat and looked out the bridge to the planet beyond.

    “It looks like a dust ball.” Varo commented.

    “Much like Tatooine.” Kel agreed.

    “Perhaps so,” Zentaris spoke up, “but it was also the sight of the turning point in the war between the Coalition of Light and Sith. If the Sith had not won here, there is little doubt the Jedi would still be ruling the galaxy with the support of a corrupt Senate.”

    “Maybe your section of the galaxy.” Kel retorted.

    Zentaris regarded the Deshade, but said nothing. He simply turned and looked at the planet again.

    In front of the passengers, the pilot was receiving landing clearance and instructions from the planet. The space traffic to and from the planet was nearly non-existent, with just a few large ships in orbit. Kel found this odd, since the planet was so close to Prakith. Surely the Sith weren’t so foolish as to think that they were impregnable in the Deep Core. He let the thought pass from his mind, figuring that they could do what they wanted, including vaporize themselves from the face of the galaxy.

    Entry into the atmosphere and landing was pretty uneventful. Varo could tell from the smooth approach and landing that the Sith pilot was very good at what he did. He could also tell, from the way Zentaris and Torik treated the man, that he was not a Force sensitive, and probably treated like a sub-par being.

    Pity, Varo thought, the Mandalorian Empire can always use a good pilot.

    With the boarding ramp lowered, Kel and Varo let the three Sith take the lead position. They all knew that time was not on their side and they needed to figure out what happened to the archaeological teams before too much more time elapsed. If anything had even happened at all, which was a possibility.

    The wind around the landing platform was blowing gently, with dust being carried up from the ground. The sun was hanging in the sky, but it hadn’t yet come to full bear. Everyone could tell that this planet saw extreme changes in weather, and probably in short amounts of time. Stopping at the end of the ramp, the group formed a small circle.

    “We need to visit the spaceport’s Senior Overseer. He should be able to assist us.” Zeik-Vergif offered.

    Everyone nodded in agreement and headed to the nearest government office. It was a smaller building, no doubt mostly serving as a warehouse, with a small office in the front. There was a reception area as they entered, with an older male Twi’lek sitting at a desk facing the door. As they filed into the small building, the older Twi’lek greeted them.

    “Greetings, travelers. What, may I ask, brings you to Kalist?”

    Zentaris took a step forward.

    “We are on an urgent mission from the Sith High Council. We need to speak to the Senior Overseer immediately.”

    The Twi’lek shrugged his shoulders, stood up from his desk, and walked through a door on the wall just to his left. He walked out a few seconds later, with a younger human male walking behind him. The human stopped at the door as the Twi’lek walked back to his desk and sat down.

    “It is an honor to have you here, please come into my office.”

    He held his arm out, gesturing for the group to come inside. As they walked into the office, he walked behind his desk and motioned to the seats in front.

    “Please, have a seat.”

    As the three Sith sat down, Kel and Varo stood against the wall with the door they just walked through.

    “Thank you, but we’ll stand.” Kel said, motioning to himself and Varo.

    The Overseer shrugged and sat down.

    “Do as you like.”

    He looked at the monitor on his desk and returned his attention to the group.

    “Welcome to Kalist. Let me formally welcome the representatives of the Sith High Council, as well as the Mandalorian Empire. Again, it’s an honor to have you here with us. My name is Wangell Chungress.”

    “Can the pleasantries, di’kut. We need to find out about the archaeological team that came here about two months ago. It was a mix of Sith and Mandos.”

    The group all turned at looked at Varo, who was standing there with his arms crossed.

    “Well, aren’t you straight to the point?” Wangell said with a strained diplomatic smile.

    “I think,” Wangell said while looking at Varo, “they went into the mountains. I’m not quite sure of the coordinates, since they aren’t really required to give those to our office, but I think I can direct you to someone that could help. His name is Manshen.”

    “And where can we find this Manshen?” Varo countered.

    Turning his attention to the Sith in front of him, Wangell continued.

    “He should be in the market place. He rents speeders and sells various supplies to adventurers. If anyone might have the slightest idea, he would be the place to start.”

    “Then he should be easy enough to find.” Zeik-Vergif answered.

    As the Sith stood from their seats, Wengell held up his hand in a stopping gesture.

    “One more thing, before you leave.”

    “What is it?” said Zentaris.

    “The High Council sent me a message shortly before you arrived. They want you to check back in with me before you leave.”

    “Then we’ll see you when we get back.” Zeik-Vergif said with a bow.

    Wengell smiled and watched as the group left his office.

    “Happy hunting,” he called to them.

    As the group left the building they looked around to locate the market place. Zentaris pointed to the east and led the way. They all noticed that the wind had subsided, the clouds were gone, and the sun was quickly warming the air.

    “Kriffing deserts,” Varo said to Kel over the helmet com, “I hate them.”

    “Like I said, just like Tatooine. Just be glad there aren’t two suns.”

    Varo chuckled slightly.


    It only took a few minutes to reach the market place, and about half as long before they found the shop that Wengell had told them about. Looking at the building itself, there was nothing spectacular about it. In fact, it was quite plain and appeared to be in disrepair. Lining the outside of the building, though, were about four speeders, each in various stages of repair. The five beings walked closer to the building, and saw a door big enough for two speeders was open. They walked to the shop door and saw a massive Herglic inside, working on a speeder. He glanced over his shoulder, but returned to what he was doing.

    “I’ll be with you in just a second. I need to connect this motivator properly.”

    He grunted a bit.

    “Stupid beings not taking care of the stuff they rent.” He said mostly to himself.

    Zentaris felt something when they approached the building, and now that they were closer, it was unmistakable.

    “The Force is with this Herglic.” He said to Torik. “I can feel the Dark Side emanating from him.”

    The Herglic snorted a small laugh. As he stood, he stretched his back as best he could and wiped off his hands. He turned toward Zentaris.

    “Maybe that’s because I’m a Sith, little man.” He said with a toothy grin.

    “Ah, that would explain it then, wouldn’t it? You are Manshen I presume?”

    “That would be me. So, what can I do for you and,” he looked at Kel and Varo, “your Mandalorian companions?”

    Kel spoke up.

    “We need to get in contact with an archaeological team that came through here. It was probably about two months ago.”

    “Any particular reason why?”

    “They stopped transmitting updates a couple weeks ago. We just need to make sure they are safe, and repair any faults in their equipment.”

    “I see. Yes, I remember them. An odd bunch I thought, but not many people in that field are normal, now are they?”

    The Herglic laughed in self amusement.

    “Do you know where they went?” Kel asked.

    Out of the corner of his visor, Kel could have sworn he saw a glaring look come from Zentaris. If he had, Zentaris wiped the look fairly quickly and instead kept that infuriating serene look on his face.

    “I have a rough idea.” The Herglic answered. “I had to take supplies to them once, not too long after they arrived. I didn’t see their set-up, but I knew it couldn’t have been far from where I was.”

    “Do you still have the coordinates?”

    “Oh, I’m sure I do somewhere. But given that it seems like you are in a rush, how about I just take all of us there? Kalist isn’t the most hospitable place in the galaxy, and I would hate for something to happen to you and your friends.”

    “We are not friends,” Kel shot back, “But we are in a rush. We’ll be waiting for you outside.”

    Kel turned and walked out the door, with Varo following suit.

    “Jeez, what crawled up his armor?” The Herglic asked to no one in particular.

    “He’s a Mando, what do you expect?” Zentaris answered in a condescending tone.


    About twenty minutes after the Sith and Mandos had arrived at Manshen’s business, they were getting into a larger speeder that the Herglic had brought around from the back of the building. It was a small cargo speeder, but was easily big enough to handle all on board, even the Herglic.

    “Hope you guys are all comfy back there, it’s a bit of a journey to where I dropped off the last shipment of supplies.”

    “Good, it will give us time to rest up. I’m exhausted from all this sitting and space travel.” Varo said sarcastically.

    Manshen chuckled at the comment.

    “Last time it took me about an hour to get there, but I was loaded down with a full months worth of supplies. I’m guessing I can take at least fifteen to twenty minutes off that on this trip.”

    Manshen turned back around and put the speeder into gear. He pressed the accelerator and shot down the streets of the spaceport. It was easy to tell he had gone this route before, just from the constant speed of the vehicle. Within minutes they were out of the confines of the spaceport and traversing across the dry, rocky terrain.
  11. WarmNyota_SweetAyesha

    WarmNyota_SweetAyesha Chosen One star 8

    Aug 31, 2004
    Looks like they're well on their way. Wonder what they'll find? [face_thinking] And can Manshen be trusted? :p
    92SE-R likes this.
  12. earlybird-obi-wan

    earlybird-obi-wan Chosen One star 6

    Aug 21, 2006
    What will Manshen do? great post[face_dancing]
    92SE-R and Nyota's Heart like this.
  13. 92SE-R

    92SE-R Jedi Master star 3

    Apr 15, 2005

    Why would you guys think Manshen would do anything? He runs a speeder shop. And notice he's not in the Dramatis Personae. ;)
    Manshen was the temporary character for my friend Kelly, who was only going to join us for one session.
  14. 92SE-R

    92SE-R Jedi Master star 3

    Apr 15, 2005
    Nyota's Heart


    Chapter 4

    Manshen had been correct in his assessment of how long it would take. After about forty minutes of some of the dullest terrain any of them could recall going through, the speeder finally slowed down and came to a stop. Manshen took the speeder out of gear and shut it down.

    “Well, here we are.”

    The group climbed out of the cargo area of the speeder, everyone stretching as they walked a small distance from it. The landscape hadn’t changed much, except for the fact that the ground had bit more of a roll to it. It was still fairly flat, otherwise.

    “Didn’t the information from the Council say the group was in a cave?” Torik asked, turning to Zentaris.

    “Indeed it did.”

    “But I don’t see any mountains anywhere near us.”

    “The caves aren’t in mountains, my friend,” Manshen answered, “they are underground. The openings are usually well hidden, unless you are right on top of them.”

    “I don’t mean to be the one to ask the obvious question,” Manshen started, “but shouldn’t you guys know where your people were? I mean, it wouldn’t make much sense to come out into an area such as this, and tell no one where you were going.”

    Zentaris nodded in agreement with Manshen’s logic.

    “They had been digging in another area about half a mile to the south east of here. A week before they stopped transmitting any updates, they let the Council know that they were changing dig sites because of something they found. They said they would send an update no longer than a week later, letting the Council know where they were relocating to. Evidently they were taking everything, and everyone, with them. The Council never received another update from them.”

    “I see. That is a shame then. They could have been quite a distance from here, and in any direction. With the shifting winds out here, you can lose tracks in less than a day. Finding tracks from your men may be next to impossible, let alone where they were digging.”

    “Found them.”

    Everyone turned and looked at the Mandalorians, who were standing another thirty feet away from the group.

    “Excellent, how did you manage that so fast?”Manshen wondered.

    Varo held up a small orb, before putting it back in his pouch.

    “Simple hover cam. Comes in handy when you need to scout an area around you.”

    “Ingenious Mandalorians. It must serve you well in battle as well.”

    “It can, when you need it to.”

    The Herglic smiled.

    “So then, my Mandalorian friend, in which direction do we need to go?”

    Kel pointed to the North.

    “About a mile and a half in that direction. There is a small hill with a pretty even looking base to it. We spotted some equipment around there. Some of it was clearly marked as Mandalorian.”

    “Was there any movement around the area?” Zeik-Vergif asked.

    “Not that we saw, no. They could be underground still, but the look of disarray of the items suggests that it’s been a while since they came to the surface.”

    “Perhaps there was a cave in?”

    “It’s a possibility.”

    “Then we need to hurry!” Manshen quickly interjected.

    There was no need to state the obvious for the group. As they climbed into the cargo speeder, they all knew that time could be running out for the team. If there had indeed been a cave in, they could be hurt, running out of oxygen, or worse. Manshen fired up the speeder and headed in the direction that Kel had pointed. He strained the engines, trying to get there as quickly as possible. The terrain was a little rougher, and more than once the speeder bottomed out on the rocks. It was a short and bumpy ride, taking a little more than a minute. As they pulled up to the approximate area, it was obvious where the archaeological team had gone. Rising about ten feet or so off the surface was a good sized hill. Only it wasn’t totally smooth like the rest of the terrain. As Manshen pulled closer to the hill, they saw the different containers strewn about the area. One of the tents was ripped and torn, its loose fabric swaying in the breeze. Manshen stopped the speeder.

    “Alright, everyone out. Search the perimeter. I want to find that cave entrance, and I want it found yesterday!” Kel barked, the General in him taking over.

    No one argued. As he and Varo jumped out of the back, the Sith followed suit. The Herglic climbed out of the driver’s seat and took a quick glance under the speeder, trying to determine if the bumps had caused any serious damage. Satisfied that they hadn’t, he joined the others in their search. It wasn’t long before they found the entrance to the cave. Opening up in a small ravine just below the western slope of the hill, they found makeshift stairs that went into the mouth of it. The opening was big, being about ten feet wide at the base, and arching up nearly as high.

    “I don’t see a sign of a cave in.” said Torik.

    “That doesn’t mean there wasn’t one further in.” Zeik-Vergif responded.

    Kel stepped up to the mouth of the cave and looked in for a moment. He turned and addressed the group.

    “Alright, the first hall here looks fairly stable. I want a single file line going in, with you men staggered about ten feet between. If there was a cave in, we don’t want to unsettle things any more than we have to. I’ll take the lead. I want Varo to bring up our rear. Manshen, I don’t expect you to come with us, but if you do, it will be a tight fit probably.”

    “Don’t worry about me, I’ll be fine.” Was all he said in response.

    Manshen barely knew these beings, yet he was willing to risk his life for them. Kel respected that.

    “Alright, let’s get moving.”

    Kel walked through the mouth of the cave and turned on the small lights on the side of his helmet. As the Sith entered they activated their glow rods. The illumination from Kel’s helmet was directed right in front of wherever he looked, so he had to look a little ahead at the ground to make sure of his footing. He looked up once, as the ceiling dropped to a little over nine feet, and noticed that there had been tract lighting but a lot of it was destroyed.

    “What do you make of the lights?” he commed to Varo.

    Varo looked up.

    “Almost looks like a power surge. Those things are toast. Almost like the internals blew out, from the looks of it.”

    “I don’t like this. Make sure you keep your motion sensors on. I don’t want something, or someone, sneaking up behind us in here.”

    They had walked at a slight downward angle for about a hundred feet when the path turned to the right. Kel killed the lights on his helmet and held up his hand for the others to stop. Varo followed Kel’s lead and turned his lights off as well.

    Kel leaned, barely bringing his visor around the corner. He examined the hall and what appeared to be a room just a little farther down. There was no movement or light in the hall, but there was a faint flicker of light coming from the room. Turning his lights back on, he rounded the corner and headed down the hall. He noticed that the walls had scorch marks, it looked like, and that a lightsaber had cut into the walls at some point. The marks weren’t fresh though, in fact they looked fairly old. As the others came down the hall, they too noticed the marks. Zentaris stopped at one of them and examined it closer.

    “These look like cuts from a lightsaber, although I wouldn’t say they were recent. Fascinating.”

    Zentaris was genuinely enthralled with the cuts. He so enjoyed delving into history that he rarely complained about being stuck in the Great Library on Korriban. Although he craved the power that was rightfully his, he bided his time, taking the opportunity to learn all he could.

  15. WarmNyota_SweetAyesha

    WarmNyota_SweetAyesha Chosen One star 8

    Aug 31, 2004
    :eek: Mystery in a cave. [face_thinking] Zentaris more than the rest bares watching I think.
    92SE-R likes this.
  16. earlybird-obi-wan

    earlybird-obi-wan Chosen One star 6

    Aug 21, 2006
    And now the action during the cave search? A ripped and torn tent sounds omnious
    92SE-R likes this.
  17. 92SE-R

    92SE-R Jedi Master star 3

    Apr 15, 2005
    Zentaris is your quintessential Sith it appears. Only he knows he can outlive most of his contemporaries. :p

    Indeed! Whatever will our group discover? [face_nail_biting]

    AN: Thanks again to all who are reading! ^:)^
  18. 92SE-R

    92SE-R Jedi Master star 3

    Apr 15, 2005
    Nyota's Heart


    Chapter 5

    Torik came close to where Zentaris was looking, pulling him from his private musings.

    “Kind of odd, don’t you think?” asked Torik.

    “What’s kind of odd?”

    “Finding lightsaber marks all up and down this hall.”

    “Quite. No doubt this is what piqued the interest of the archeologists.”

    “I wouldn’t be so sure about that.”

    They looked up and saw Kel standing a few feet from them.

    “I’m pretty sure what brought them here was found once they entered the next room.”

    By this time the entire group had stopped walking and were examining different sections of the hall they were in.

    “Did you find any sign of a cave in?” Manshen inquired.

    “No. It looks like it might be worse than we feared.”

    “How could it possibly be worse?”

    “You’ll see once you’re in the room.”

    He said nothing further as he headed back into the room at the end of the hall. As he walked in, he turned and they lost sight of him. Varo walked up behind the group.

    “Let’s keep it moving. We can always examine this after we figure out what’s going on here.”

    Zentaris glared at the Mando, but thought better of it than to argue with him. He turned and walked down the remainder of the hall into the room. As they entered, they saw Kel in a corner examining something on the ground. From what they could see, the room looked fairly large, being about fifty feet on all sides. There were a few lights in the ceiling that were flickering on and off, making it hard to focus on anything in particular. The group spread out, looking at different items on the tables and shelves in the room. Zeik-Vergif sniffed the air.

    “What is that smell?”

    “Them, I think.” Varo answered, pointing to a couple charred bodies.

    “By the Force…”

    “Hey, it looks like there’s a computer terminal over here.” Torik announced to the group. “Looks like it’s low on power. Either of you Mando’s have a slicing kit?”

    Varo walked over to where Torik was standing, careful to not step on the dead body as he walked. He knelt down and found the access port for the terminal. Pulling out a small cable from his gauntlet, he plugged it in. Torik looked at the screen as it became fuzzy and died out.

    “There’s nothing on the monitor anymore. Were you able to slice it?”

    Varo sat there silently. His only answer was a tap on the side of his helmet. A minute later he disconnected from the terminal, pulled out a data pad, and plugged the cable in. It was only a few second more before Varo handed the pad to Torik.

    “Slicing that was child’s play. The only thing it had on it was a map of the facility, looks like this place is a bit bigger than I was expecting. It’s not some natural cave, based on the schematics I was able to download.”

    Kel stood and looked at Varo.

    “Underground facility?”

    “Partially. Evidently there used to be a good sized building on the surface. We’re in what was, at one time, one of the lower levels to that building.”

    “How big are we talking?”

    “What is left, or what it used to be?”

    “Where we are now, and what’s left.”

    “It looks like there should be another three or four more rooms attached to this, but other than that, the hallway and entrance that was excavated is about it.”

    “Any idea what happened here?”

    “Yeah, someone torched the place.”

    “I mean in the computer.”

    “Oh. No, just the layout.”

    “Well then we should keep moving. Everyone stay alert. Who knows if we are alone down here.”

    Zentaris closed his eyes for a moment and concentrated.

    “No, General, we are the only ones down here. Other than the dead bodies, of course.”

    “Still, keep your eyes open. Maybe you’ll find something useful.”

    The Mandalorian General didn’t stick around to hear if there was a response. He walked into the next room and began sweeping the area with his lights. As the others came into the room, everyone seemed to notice the carnage. Several items were tossed into a corner. The lights above flickered much the same way they had in the previous room. The only good news in this room was that no one found a body. Manshen noticed a slight reflection of his glow rod by his feet. He bent down and picked up a data pad. He walked over to Varo, who was examining a section of the wall.

    “Something interesting?” Manshen asked, as he looked were Varo was.

    “Yeah, it looks like this place was torched, but I have yet to find a source of the fire. These scorch patterns make no sense.”

    “Well, not to distract you, but I found this data pad on the floor. Figured you might be able to get into it.”

    Varo took the data pad from Manshen and about laughed. The data pad was already fairly small in a humans hands, but in the hands of a Herglic, it was almost comical. He restrained the laugh, though, instead turning the pad on. As it booted up, he was quickly able to gain access. Obviously it wasn’t encrypted or well secured. He accessed a few files and gave the contents a quick once over. Satisfied, he turned the data pad off and handed it back to Manshen.

    “Anything interesting?”

    “Not entirely. It looks like some preliminary notes about the excavation and supply requests. You might want to hold onto that though, I’m sure the High Council will want to examine everything we find.”

    Manshen nodded and put the pad in the backpack he was carrying.

    Having thoroughly examined the second room, they moved on through a small hall into another room. This room was different from the last two, however. It was easily as large as the main room when they came in, but all the lights worked. The sight that greeted them, however, made some in the group wish the lights didn’t work. On top of some of the counter areas, but mostly on the floor, were six dead bodies. All of them were burned nearly to the bone. The group stood there in silence, still not sure how or why this happened. Zentaris broke the silence.

    “Captain Taan, it looks like that terminal over in the corner is still functioning. Perhaps it will give us some of the answers we are seeking.”

    Varo looked where Zentaris had motioned to. There was indeed a terminal sitting there, but it wasn’t old, like the last one he accessed. This one was no doubt one that belonged to the archaeological team. He walked over to it and tried to gain access. After being denied four times, he pulled the cable from his gauntlet and plugged in.

    “You guys might want to go ahead and see what else there is, this one might take a bit to crack.”

    Kel nodded and motioned for the group to follow him into the next room.

    As they were leaving, something caught Zentaris’ eye. He stopped and looked at what appeared to be a small crack in the wall. He walked closer and noticed that it was a narrow opening, with a dimly lit room just inside. He pulled out his glow rod and held it up. Inside the nook were a couple shelves with books on them. From the looks of them, they were at least a few hundred years old. Zentaris found a perch for the glow rod and pulled a thin book from the shelf. He felt the old leather in his hands, and was amazed at the condition it was in. As he gently opened it, he inhaled as he noticed the ancient language that was written inside. He ran his hands over the ancient text, trying to decipher as much as he could.

    The group that had followed Kel into the next room were greeted with more bodies laying on the floor. These were more than just burnt, they had been dismembered. The elongated room had two medical beds in the middle, with all the instruments required to keep track of the vitals of nearly any species. Also, like the last room, the lights were all on and there were several scorch marks on the floor, walls, and ceiling. Kel carefully studied the pattern of the marks. After a moment he walked over and stood between the medical beds. He looked at the carnage in the room and could see a pattern emerging. He didn’t like what the facts were telling him.

    The three Sith that had accompanied him walked to the far end of the room, where it looked as if a section of the wall had once been collapsed. There was now an opening in the debris, and just beyond was another, smaller, room. Manshen squeezed his bulk through the opening and moved to the side so the others could come in as well. They stopped and looked at each other when they saw what was in the room.

    “General Alaris,” Torik called, “you may want to come and see this.”

    Kel looked to where the Sith had gone and walked to the opening. Having to duck slightly as he entered, Kel stopped just inside, standing next to Manshen. No one said anything as they tried to make perfect sense of what they were seeing.

    In front of the small group stood two ancient cryo-tubes that had been opened recently, presumably by the archaeologists. There was still power flowing to the tubes from a conduit that ran into the back of the wall behind the tubes. There were small pieces of debris on top and around the tubes, evidence that the wall they had just walked through was brought down by heavy explosives most likely. The design of the tubes was unlike anything the group had seen before. Ornate and extravagant, it made little sense from an engineering standpoint. It was fairly obvious that whoever had these built was concerned with looks almost as much as function. Just to the side of the cryo-tubes was another computer terminal. Its screen had been broken by falling debris, but it looked like the main housing was still in good shape. Chances were good that it was still receiving power as well.

    “Captain, when you are done slicing the terminal you are at, I would like for you to come into the next room. I need to see if the terminal by these cryo-tubes contains any new information.” Kel said privately to Varo via their comms.

    “Did you say cryo-tubes?”

    “Indeed. It looks like the team here may have found something in them and I need to see what it was.”

    “Oh, I know what, or rather who they found. I’m almost done here, and I’m not too fond of what I’ve found. It looks like the Sith may need to explain a few things to us.”

    “I agree, too many things aren’t adding up here. General Alaris, out.”

    Kel turned his attention back to the room he was in. Zeik-Vergif was walking to the back of the cryo-tubes, trying to determine where the power source was coming from. Torik had gone closer to them, recording the details of the designs on his small holo-recorder. Manshen was still standing next to Kel, but he didn’t seem the least bit fazed by the discovery. He almost looked like he had a smile on his face. It was odd, but Kel disregarded it. Perhaps the Herglic was just happy to be part of something greater than a speeder business on a barren world.

    “Everyone, back to the main lab.” Kel ordered as he walked out of the chamber.
  19. WarmNyota_SweetAyesha

    WarmNyota_SweetAyesha Chosen One star 8

    Aug 31, 2004
    Very intriguing discoveries. [face_thinking]
    92SE-R likes this.
  20. earlybird-obi-wan

    earlybird-obi-wan Chosen One star 6

    Aug 21, 2006
    Great visual description of the discoveries. And what will they find more?
    92SE-R likes this.
  21. 92SE-R

    92SE-R Jedi Master star 3

    Apr 15, 2005
    You know how they say you only see 10% of the iceberg? Yeah... [face_whistling]
  22. 92SE-R

    92SE-R Jedi Master star 3

    Apr 15, 2005
    Nyota's Heart

    AN: Sorry if this one is a bit longer, but I just didn't want to break it up . I'm sure you'll see why as you read. :)


    Chapter 6

    Walking over to look at one of the bodies lying on the ground, Kel saw Varo walk into the room with Zentaris. The Pau’an was looking at a book, half watching where Varo was going so that he wouldn’t run into anything. Kel looked down at the body by his feet and saw a slightly damaged holo-recorder sticking out from under the body. He reached down and picked it up, having to push the charred remains to the side to grab it. He stood and examined the recording device. It had a Mandalorian marking on it. He looked down at the remains again and said a silent goodbye. He didn’t know who it was, but if there was a chance it was a fellow Mandalorian he wanted to be sure to give his proper respects. Kel set the recorder down on the medical bed in front of him. He then reached up, released the seals around his helmet, and took it off. The pungent odor of burnt death met his nostrils. He looked over and noticed the look of disgust on Torik.

    “What’s the matter, son of Kesh, am I not pretty enough for you?”

    “I’ve just never seen a Deshade in person. I’ve seen pictures, but they do your species no justice.”

    “Well, don’t be planning any surgeries to get me all prettied up. I’m fine just the way I am, despite what you Keshiri may think.”

    Kel set his helmet next to the recorder and picked the recording device back up. As he examined it, he noticed that it was only the casing that appeared to take any of the damage. He quickly found the power button and turned it on. From what he could tell, it had some recordings on it, but the battery was running low. He thought it best to wait until they could plug it into a holo terminal and transfer all the data. Turning it back off he looked over to Zentaris who seemed to be mouthing something to himself.

    “Find a good book there?” Kel asked.

    Delshoa…?” Zentaris said out loud, “No, that’s not right.” He looked up at Kel. “I’m sorry, what did you say?”

    “Did you find something good to read?”

    “Quite fascinating, actually.” Zentaris closed the thin book. “I found a few of these in a hidden recess, along with some scrolls. They are written in a dialect of ancient Sith I haven’t seen before. There are some similarities to other dialects I have seen, so I’m able to get a very general idea of what this particular book contains.”

    “And that would be…?”

    “Well, this one seems to talk about different worlds and certain dates, if I’m translating this correctly. There were a couple of things that really stood out to me, though. On the opening page, here,” Zentaris opened the book, “it looks like it lists two names specifically: ‘Valere’ and ‘Serkan’. I’m fairly certain the word in front of those names denotes a title, I would assume Darth.”

    “So, it talks about a couple of Sith lords?”

    “It would appear so. At least, that is what I think it says, given my limited time with the texts so far. I did find another word that I thought you might be interested in on this page.” Zentaris flipped a few pages and pointed to a word at around the middle of the page.

    “I don’t read Sith.”

    “No, I don’t suppose you would…” Zentaris said with a faint chuckle. “Anyway, this word here, again if I’m translating this correctly, comes out to be ‘Mandalore’. Kind of odd to read about Mandalore in Sith writings, don’t you think?”

    “Maybe they were referring to the planet.”

    “Not likely. This form of the word is much like another dialect I am familiar with. No, this form of the word refers to the being, or the title the being holds more specifically. Whatever it was they were writing about in here, they seemed to be very interested in the Mandalore of the day.”

    “And when, about, would that have been?”

    “I think I can answer that.” Varo answered, as he came out of the chamber with the cryo-tubes. “I think everyone needs to head to the next room and gather around the holo projector. There are some things that everyone will want to see.”

    “You found something of interest?” Manshen asked.

    “You’ll see for yourself soon enough.”

    Varo walked through the door into the next room. Zentaris grabbed the books and scrolls he had packed into his pouch, while Kel grabbed his helmet and the holo recorder he found. Once they were in the other room, Kel handed Varo the recorder.

    “You’ve been a busy man today, Captain, but I found this near one of the bodies. It has some recordings on it, and I’m certain they are from the team. We just need to upload them into a more stable terminal.”

    Kel handed Varo the recorder and Varo tilted his helmet as he looked at it.

    “Looks like its seen better days. Does it have enough juice?”

    “It should have just enough to transfer the files.”

    “I’ll plug it in and start transferring them, while I play what I’ve pulled from the other terminals.”

    As the group gathered around table that contained the archaeological team’s holo projector, Varo plugged in the recorder Kel had given him, as well as plugged the cable from his suit in. He kept his helmet on, so as to more easily access the files he had downloaded to his suit. Zentaris, meanwhile, had put the thin leather book with the others he gathered and set his pouch on a chair just behind where he stood. Varo uploaded the files from his armor’s memory, and soon the projector came to life, displaying ten files, one of them currently blinking, which indicated files were being uploaded.

    “We’re going to start with the files I pulled from the first terminal I had to slice into.” Varo selected five of the files and placed them in the hold queue. “Now I’ve only seen bits and pieces of them as they downloaded, but they are quite interesting.”

    Varo lined up the files and selected the first one. He dropped the next four in behind the first file, so that the projector would play the recordings one after the other. The room darkened a bit as the file loaded, then became bright again as it started playing.


    Standing at the base of a hill, the four human males were shaking hands and laughing.

    “Come on, Cass, we need to document this properly.” Came the voice of the recorders operator.

    “Jeez, you think that the world was going to end with a little celebration.” Cass said with a smile. He was a middle aged man, with thinning blonde hair.

    “Look, I missed the blast, so I need to record what you’ve found for the High Council and Mandalorian Antiquities.”

    “Fine, fine.” The man said with a wave of his hand. “Basically, we followed a hunch when we saw a small reptile running around the area with what appeared to be a piece of fabric in his mouth. Now, granted, we were about two miles south of our present position originally, but several people we talked to at the spaceport said we were more likely to find some caves in the terrain up north. Needless to say, they were right. As you can see behind me, there is a formation unlike anything else in the surrounding area. That was our first clue that something was special about this place. We searched the area and finally found an opening about two feet wide. Once we looked inside, we could see that there was a tunnel that was much bigger just beyond. Minutes ago we set some small charges to widen the opening a bit more. It was successful, as you can see.”

    As he pointed behind and a little further down the small hill, the camera followed and zoomed in on the entrance. It zoomed back out and panned back to Cass.

    “One of our Sith companions is currently going down the tunnel to see what he can find.” He continued. “We’re hoping that it might lead to some nice artifacts. Who knows, maybe some hidden treasures.”

    As the four men laughed again, a Twi’lek came running out from the entrance.

    “Cass! You need to see this!” He said, gasping for air.

    “What is it? What did you find?” he excitedly answered.

    “Just get down here, and bring the recorder, Falesh.”

    The Twi’lek was gone just as fast as he appeared, and the other archaeologists quickly slid down the hill to the entrance. There was a slight bump in the picture, and a muffled curse.

    “Kriffing rock!”

    Another small bump and soon the picture was cart wheeling down the slope of the hill. It stopped in front of what appeared to be a boulder, but as it was lifted up it was clear the rock was only about six inches across. A Bothan’s face filled the screen a second later, looking concerned.

    “Are you coming?” Cass’ voice could be heard in the background.

    “Yeah, I just dropped the camera. I’m going to swap this one out for another one. It should only take a second. I’ll transfer the files later.”

    “Well, hurry up. And make sure you bring a glow rod, it looks pretty dark in here.”

    “Yeah, ok. I’ll be there in a second.”

    The hand of the Bothan reached toward something as the camera tilted, and soon the screen was black.


    The room filled with the face of Cass, once again. And once again, he was smiling.

    “Is it on?” He inquired.

    “Yes, we’re recording.” The voice of the Bothan, no doubt.

    “We have found something exciting! Even beyond what we had hoped to find in the tunnel. Turns out that the tunnel we found was just part of something much bigger. We’re still going through the files we’ve found, but it looks like there used to be a building here at one time. Well, above us, to be more precise. Right now, we are in one of about four rooms that we found after walking down the tunnel. This place is amazing. It only took a few minutes, but we were able to get power to all the lights and computers. This isn’t just some run of the mill cave we’ve found, it’s actually a part of what used to be someone’s residence. Based on the size of the rooms and the items we’ve been able to catalog thus far, I would say this belonged to someone of considerable wealth.”

    An Anzati walked up beside Cass and whispered something to him.

    “Really? Are you certain?”

    The Anzati nodded.

    “Well then tell them to proceed with the greatest caution. We don’t want to destroy anything we don’t have to.”

    Again the Anzati nodded. He turned to the camera, smiled and waved, then left the room.

    Cass rubbed his hands together and gave a childish grin.

    “Looks like they may have found something on the other side of that wall of debris.”

    “Any idea what?”

    “Not yet, but as long as we’re careful, we should know something within the hour. Come on, let’s go give them a hand.”

    Cass stood and walked out of view.

    “Hooray, more digging.”Quipped the Bothan.


    The room filled with Cass pacing on screen this time. He was running his hands through his thin hair.

    “Ok, how about we start after we broke through the wall?” The Bothan could be heard saying, clearly in the middle of a conversation with Cass.

    The man stopped for a moment and sat on a stool that was next to him. Behind him was a door that the group quickly identified as the one that lead to where the rearmost room with the wall of debris and cryo-tubes were.

    “Right… the wall…”

    “Take a breath Cass.”

    The man inhaled deeply through his nose, and slowly let it out his mouth.

    “Ok, you good now?”

    Cass shook his head affirmatively, but was still visibly shaken.

    “It looks like there is a lot more in here that we could have possibly imagined.” Cass began. “Turns out that, uh, on the other side of that wall of debris was, I still can’t believe this myself, turns out there were two cryo-tubes. Evidently they had their own power source, which we still haven’t been able to locate, but assume that it’s possibly from a geothermal source of some kind, probably miles from here. A couple of our colleagues looked at the vitals that were being displayed on the monitors for the tubes and discovered that the beings inside were in a prolonged hibernation. Unfortunately, it looked like they had used up almost all of the nutrients that were stored up for them. We had no choice, you see, we had to do it.”

    Cass was becoming visibly agitated again.

    “Easy Cass, one step at a time.” The Bothan reassured him. “Tell us what you had to do.”

    Cass nodded again and continued.

    “Doctor Shariz said that if we tried to thaw them out conventionally, it would take days. Turns out this equipment is so old that they hadn’t figured out how to do a quick thaw on beings.”

    “How old are we talking?”

    “Approximately eight hundred years, nearest we can gather.”

    The Bothan whistled.

    “Please, Professor, continue.”

    “We weighed the pros and cons of doing a quick thaw on machines that weren’t really meant to do that. Scientifically speaking, it was a no brainer. Doctors Shariz and Pal’Kun set out to begin the thawing process, but at an accelerated rate. The programming for the cryo-tubes wasn’t made to do that, but they pushed them to anyway. It took a couple of hours, but finally the tubes opened. Neither being responded to any physical stimuli and it appeared that neither had a pulse. So we’ve placed them on two medical beds in the next room. We have them hooked up to monitors in the hopes that we can get some kind of response from them.”

    Cass stood and walked out of the room, visibly shaken.

    “Cass, I’m sure they’ll be fine.” Falesh called out to him.

    “Poor guy.” He whispered, as the recording stopped.


    In the same room, and in nearly the same spot, a more cheerful looking Professor Cass came to life.

    “Well, it’s been a rough night, but the doctors were able to finally get some vital signs from our freezer burned guests. I’m told they are as stabile as they can be given their situation. We hope that they will soon wake up and then we can figure out what happened to them. After looking around the rooms a bit, we found a small recess that contained many old scrolls and books. Several dozen I would say. We also found something interesting in the cryo-tubes of our guests. Each one had a lightsaber inside. Well, one had two inside, actually. We can’t seem to activate them though, so I can only assume they are genetically coded. It would appear that they were Force users. Now as to whether they were Sith or Jedi, I’m not sure, but I would have to guess Sith, if the Force is telling me anything.”

    Cass laughed after the last sentence.

    “What’s so funny, Cass?” Falesh asked.

    “I’m kind of an anomaly in the Sith Alliance. Here I am a fully capable Force sensitive, but I chose to become a scholar and archaeologist instead. I was treated fair enough as an acolyte, I suppose, but I never yearned for the same power and prestige that many other Sith Lords seem to crave. I yearn more for knowledge and discovery.”

    “So, you’re like a Sith Lord Professor? The one that the kids always complain about.”

    Again Cass laughed.

    “Yes, I suppose I am!”


    “This next one is the last file from this group.” Varo told the others.


    This time a panicked looking Cass was on the screen, clearly trying to set up the recorder himself.

    “There, I think this thing is on. It looks like I was right in my assessment about the two beings we thawed. They are indeed Sith. I can feel the Dark Side strengthening them with each passing minute. It’s only been a few days since we brought them out of stasis, but one of them is starting to come around. He seems to be in a daze, and none too happy about being strapped down. We tried to do all we could, but he didn’t respond well to the thawing process. My gut tells me we made a mistake in bringing these two back from the beyond. I think…”

    The professor's voice was drowned out by screaming and a hissing noise in the background. The unmistakable sound of lightsabers being activated could be heard. A few more screams filled the air, and Cass looked off screen. He quickly pressed a button on a keypad.

    “There, auto-download initiated.”

    What sounded almost like a strong wind was heard off camera, and another scream from a dying victim. Cass turned in his seat and began talking to someone off screen.

    “What are you doing? We tried to help you. No… Wait… wait…”

    He held his hands up over his face, as if to shield himself, when suddenly both he and the camera were engulfed in flames. His screams of pain and agony filled the room as he slid off the chair and onto the floor. The camera, too, fell to the ground, making the room turn on its side. Another stream of flames shot down at the man, and in another second the hum of a lightsaber coming down ended the man’s cries.
    As the flames died down a little, the camera caught the foot of one being moving off as another entered its view. Standing there in front of the burning corpse with two lightsabers ignited, was what appeared to be a near-human. He was almost a purple color and had a tattoo on either side of his torso. Each one a flaming snake that wound its way around his torso and then one down each arm. He grinned as he looked at the body and then walked out of view.
  23. WarmNyota_SweetAyesha

    WarmNyota_SweetAyesha Chosen One star 8

    Aug 31, 2004
    Wow! =D= Mystery solved then. Cass seemed a 'decent sort' LOL for a Sith ;) At least with more compassionate motives. [face_thinking] Lesson to draw: Don't thaw out the cryos. :p
    92SE-R likes this.
  24. earlybird-obi-wan

    earlybird-obi-wan Chosen One star 6

    Aug 21, 2006
    A nice Sith killed and now on the Darth hunt? Cryos thawing is never good. Khan from Star Trek was one example
    92SE-R likes this.
  25. WarmNyota_SweetAyesha

    WarmNyota_SweetAyesha Chosen One star 8

    Aug 31, 2004
    Yes, that was the one I was also referring to. :eek: He's like the quintessential villain you want to keep froze.
    92SE-R likes this.