Title: Here There Be Traitors

By: Tirya King

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Category: General

Rating: PG just to be safe

Spoilers: For Ep. II. But if you haven't seen it, then you'll be lost anyway. Also a little for the JA books. Nothing much, just talking about Xanatos for the most part.

Feedback: Definitely! However flames will be used for my marshmallows.

Archive: Just tell me where it's going and it's yours!

Summary: Why would Sifo-Dyas, Padawan of Yoda, and Master to Qui-Gon Jinn turn traitor to his teachings to become the evil Count Dooku and Darth Tyrannus we love to hate? Why indeed…

Disclaimer: Dooku's blade is red. Obi's is blue. I don't own SW. So please don't sue!

A/N: Wow! It took practically forever to find the correct spelling of Sifo-Dyas, you'd think it would be on more websites! There were so many little clues in Ep II as to what exactly happened to turn Dooku from the Jedi and who's side he's really on. This is pretty much my theory in his words. Enjoy!

Here There Be Traitors

I wasn't lying when I said that I wished Qui-Gon were still alive. He always knew what to do when things got out of hand. How ironic that he is the cause of all this and he is no longer around to set it right. That's really where it began; the death of Qui-Gon and my leaving the Order in response:

Qui-Gon was the most talented pupil I'd ever seen to rise through our ranks. Unusually gifted in the Living Force and with a natural talent for dueling, everyone, including my own Master, could see what a great Jedi he would become.

I loved him as my own son and cherished the years we had together. Even after he passed his Trials and took his own Padawan, I continued to check up on him now and then just to see how he was getting along. When the time came, I comforted him after the betrayal of Xanatos. No matter what I tried to ease his pain, the Qui-Gon I knew was dead.

This was the first time I had ever felt close to real hatred toward one being. I hated that boy for what he did to my son. And I hated how when I looked into my Padawan's usually bright blue eyes, a stranger would look back with a dead coldness. The love he had for the universe he swore to protect was gradually waning and there was nothing I could do to stop it. His habit of saving lost and hurting souls ceased immediately as though afraid to let any creature near him. The children he once loved to teach feared his aloof and cold exterior. The fact that he would take none for an apprentice went without saying. I knew he would not take his life, but I feared his indifference toward his personal safety would do the job for him.

Then, suddenly, he took young Obi-Wan Kenobi as his Padawan. Or, as my Padawan would often tell me, Obi-Wan took him as a Master. Throughout the boy's training, I saw both of them very little, the boy even less. But whenever Qui-Gon and I sat to catch up, he would always tell me a new story about Obi-Wan; how he was excelling twice as quickly as his peers, or what latest tricks the endearing imp had played on his Master.

As I despised the traitorous Xanatos, I grew to adore young Obi-Wan just because of what he had done for my Padawan, though I had only really seen him in holos. He had brought my Padawan back to life and with it all his wonderful habits I had taken for granted. Lost souls were saved, children were taught, friends were once more allowed near. Yes, I loved that Kenobi child like my grandson, forever grateful for what the child of Light had done.

Years passed and Qui-Gon became the man he was before the deceitful Xanatos ruined him. He raised Obi-Wan well and in turn, the boy grew to become a Padawan any Master would be proud to boast of. The team they formed was a force not to be taken lightly, and a team well known by many of the Temple and Senate. During my brief period on the Jedi Council, I learned that even the Senior Councilors admired their skill, indeed considering keeping them a team after Obi-Wan's Knighting.

This great confidence in their skills led the council to send Qui-Gon on a shady mission to end a trade dispute between the Federation and a small planet called Naboo. With his gift at negotiation and the cowardice of the Federation's rulers, he would be home in a few days at the most. A routine mission any fledgling Knight could tackle, but they needed the swiftest end to this assignment possible. Though, like my Master told me once when I was a boy, "Rare it is when routine a mission goes."

Upon his return about a standard week later with a slave boy in tow, yet another of his little lost souls, I learned of the possible existence of a Sith Lord. A possibility previously believed impossibility. He spoke to me after his meeting with the Council, and it was the closest I had seen him to true fear since he was my Padawan. The Council had refused his requests to have the boy trained and he had hastily accepted the boy as his apprentice in the heat of the moment. He now feared that young Kenobi would take it as a personal rejection, which he was surely apt to do, creating a rift in their sacred and hard-earned relationship. And now he had a war to prevent, a queen to protect, and a Sith to draw out.

The Council had simply not listened to his concerns about the mysterious warrior. They didn't understand that Qui-Gon had been dangerously close to losing his life on Tattooine. He, who was considered to be one of the top 5 best swordsmen in our ranks. All they could do was set him out there again, with no further information, praying that the bait of a queen and two Jedi would draw it out into the open. I could do nothing but reassure him and wish him a safe and successful mission. How could I know it would be the last time I would see him alive?

The next afternoon, I was feeling ill at ease and retired to my quarters early. It was that night that I received the news. My old Master called me to inform me of Qui-Gon's battle with the Sith and his death in result. How Obi-Wan was forced to kill his Master's assassin, coming so close to succumbing to the Darkness he fought so hard against. I heard none of the details following this information; I could not bring myself to care in the slightest how my precious grandson had fared during the battle.

Qui-Gon dead? My Qui-Gon? Impossible! Nothing could kill my Padawan! I hadn't even given him a proper farewell. I never told him how my day always brightened when he stepped into the room. How he was my son in every way but blood. Or how my heart bled every time his eyes flared with grief or anger. I never told him how much I loved him. I think in that first hour, I took my first step into Enlightenment.

His funeral was an empty affair. No one who went could possibly feel what I was feeling. The only one who might've come close stood directly across from me. Obi-Wan behaved in every way a Jedi Knight should during such an occasion. But I could feel his underlying grief and undaunting guilt as though it were my own. Good. I wanted him to hurt. The guilt was justified. He had one job to do: to defeat the Sith before it could hurt anyone. And even then he would just be backing up his Master. He couldn't complete that simple task without dire consequences. How dare he wear the title of 'Knight' after what he'd done; or what he'd failed to do. I couldn't bear to look at him for fear of losing my already tentative composure. How I once adored him as my grandson was beyond my understanding.

The others who came to grieve only did so out of obligation. That foolhardy Queen couldn't possible understand what had been sacrificed for her planet. The slave boy had no idea what he owed to my Padawan. Even the Council must have only felt relief that the infamous maverick of a Jedi was finally out of their way. The Jedi they had sent to be slaughtered. This was my second step toward my Enlightenment.

The week after, I took my third and final step. With my Qui-Gon cremated and forgotten, life returned to the Temple as swiftly as humanly possible. Even his dolt of an apprentice was kept busy with the training of the boy Qui-Gon had so much faith in. I was the only one who seemed to care anymore. When my Master came to me and hinted none too subtly that the time to grieve had passed, I couldn't handle it anymore.

I told him exactly what I thought of the situation, as I had never dared to do before in my life. How the Council had used him for bait to draw out an attacker they didn't believe in. How they had blinded themselves to the truth he saw until it was too late. How they were allowing one fool to teach another. How misplaced Yoda's obvious favoritism for Kenobi was. And how the Jedi would not last much longer if they would so eagerly betray one of their own.

As always, my Master took my outburst calmly and without judgment until I had said my piece. Then began his usual tirade on how little I understood of the situation and how I was dishonoring my student's memory by reacting with such anger. That was the final straw, the final betrayal of all those I loved.

The next day I met with the Council. I presented them with my intentions of leaving the Order. They were blind old fools who had sent one of their own to his death needlessly. They thought themselves so mighty in their tall tower, playing God over us lesser mortals. I explained that no, I was not falling to the Dark Side. But I could not stand back and be a part of this deception any longer. I would go out on my own and make an honest living without abusing my powers. They, in turn, would pester me no more, nor would the Jedi ever be considered my family again. They agreed to my terms and expressed 'their regrets' over my decision, but they promised not to interfere. And so I left, not once turning back.

To cover up my shameful leaving, they made up some story of a mission in which I was killed in the line of duty. There were few of our ranks who ever left the Order, so I suppose it would not do for a venerable and respected Padawan of the great Yoda to join them. Why let the deception stop for my sake? I didn't care what they said as long as I was left in peace.

I earned my living as a Senator's advisor for a while. But I grew restless. As much as I hated to admit it, I missed my old life in a way. I missed the serenity of the Gardens and the constant presence of younglings and Initiates strong in the Force and eager to learn. I longed for a boring negotiation to oversee, a dangerous rebellion, anything at all! But I could not go back. Not ever. Not after what my Master and the others did to Qui-Gon and me.

The newly elected Supreme Chancellor, a Nubian named Palpatine, took a notice to me and my past that made me such an excellent advisor. A friendship grew between us and I was promoted to one of his closest aides. He told me that between my skills as a Jedi and diplomat and his skills as a politician, together we could finally end the Senate's corruption.

As time went on, and attempts to bring order to the galaxy failed, we came the conclusion that the Senate, and therefore the Republic, was no longer redeemable. The only way order could be preserved now was to start a slow, but eventual dictatorship. Until those childish Senators could agree on something, they must be taken care of and guided like wayward younglings.

As we planned the Separation process, he let me further and further into his inner secrets. About a year after we first planned the Separation, he casually revealed to me that he was the dead Sith's Master. To say I was horrified would be to understate a great reaction. All this time I had been aiding the Master of my Padawan's murderer. Surely he was leading me onto a path of corruption, hatred, and bloodshed. Nothing good could come of my association with him and I should reveal him to the Council. But he convinced me otherwise.

Hadn't all our time together shown me that he was not a writhing demon living in volcanoes and spewing fire in his evil rage? Wasn't he working his hardest to secure a stable government? Couldn't he just as easily let the Republic fall to and rot in the hands of those bureaucrats? Hadn't I helped him in writing his plans?

And besides, he told me, wasn't I the one who said that it was the Council's fault for my Padawan's death? He had intended no harm onto Qui-Gon, or his Padawan. He was just trying to bring the situation on Naboo to a peaceful resolution without the need for Jedi or the bumbling bureaucrats. And the Council had ordered more investigations and bait for the young, overeager Sith apprentice who's only mission was to retrieve the foolish Queen and bring her to a simple treaty negotiation. Qui-Gon was just the meddling Council's pawn caught in the crossfire. Young Darth Maul was like any apprentice, overzealous to please his Master and overstepping his boundaries once let loose. Surely even I could sympathize, I who had raised my share of youngsters.

I could find no fault in his logic, for as I thought about it more, the more I realized I had always believed this. It was then I agreed to join his cause. I accepted his offer to fill the empty slot Darth Maul had made. When I did this, my new Master told me that I could no longer go by my Jedi name. It was too risky, and besides, I had just sworn my life to that which the Jedi fought against most.

So for my efforts in the Separation process, I reclaimed my forsaken birthright; Count Dooku of Serreno. My Master would be working behind the scenes to support my leadership in this matter. Soon the Republic leaders would be eating from my palm, following the candy I offered like the younglings they were. And for my efforts in bringing down the traitorous Jedi, I became Darth Tyrannus, Lord of the Sith. Together, as Master and Apprentice, we would destroy the Republic's interfering lackeys.

And so I made our first major step toward Separation. Going on my last mission as Master Sifo-Dyas, I traveled to the system of Kamino and to its famous cloners. I ordered an army's worth of clones saying I was from the Jedi Council so they would not ask questions. My Master told me to tell them to expect Obi-Wan Kenobi, my 'apprentice,' to follow their progress in the years to come.

I didn't understand why he ordered this of me. Wasn't the army for us? He explained that he had foreseen the fall of the Jedi with their own clone army used against them. I didn't understand nor See this prediction for myself, but I obeyed. Like my old apprentice, my gifts lay in the Living Force and not with the Unifying Force. I figured that Obi-Wan would one day join us like Anakin was meant to. Despite my current dislike of my former grandson, I could not deny his talent. Were he to join us, we could surely succeed.

The years passed and our influence grew within the Republic. As we gained more power, so did the Order's strength wane. More of their teams were killed during missions and the Council's standing within the Senate lessened. I sensed they were having problems of their own that they did not wish to share. Under my new Master's guidance, my powers grew until they rivaled even Yoda's.

Soon the day came when I had enough power to start tearing the Republic apart publicly. The Viceroy of the Trade Federation came to me and offered allegiance and much money if I saw to the destruction of a certain young Senator from Naboo. I accepted and sent a bounty hunter to finish the job. During the ten years of my absence from the Temple, I had missed the creation of a new Jedi team. This team, made up of Knight Kenobi and Padawan Skywalker, seemed fated to cross my path time and time again, was now assigned to indirectly track me down.

What should have been an easy assassination turned into a frantic rush to cover up my tracks. I still felt no warmth toward Kenobi or Skywalker, but I was not fool enough to underestimate them. A quick backround check confirmed my suspicions that their team, like the Jinn/Kenobi team before them, was a well-reputed and popular one. As I scrambled for allies, I researched everything I could about them; both as individuals and as a team.

The current situation in the Temple was a sad one. The golden age of the 10,000 strong was rusting and thinning. By my standards, the Kenobi/Skywalker team was a fair one at best, protected only by the sheer will of the Force at worst. However, for the current status of the Temple, it was a strong team, one of their elite. Younglings had grown soft, Knights overconfident, and Masters aging quickly.

As a team, Obi-Wan and Anakin were nothing compared to its nearly seamless predecessor. In all honesty, Qui-Gon and Obi-Wan knew each other perfectly, each move was an instinct of the other, each thought, mutual and harmonious. They perfected each other, which was why few other teams could rival theirs. I doubt if the majority of Master/Apprentice teams ever shared the unique bond that those two did.

Anakin was too proud to listen to direction. He did not care for Obi-Wan's guidance now that he could perform a few katas. He knew all about his supposed destiny and needed no other proof of his abilities than that. Oh, he was a masterful apprentice to be sure. He truly wanted to do well and could even hold his own in a duel with Master Windu. His skills were under no question, but his arrogance grew every day, blossoming under the unsteady hand of his Master.

Obi-Wan, like I, also knew of the special bond between he and his Master. He knew of the perfect harmony that existed previously, and must have known that no such bond existed for him and Anakin. He was given too old a boy at too young an age, barely out of boyhood himself. Perhaps if he had been given a boy who had grown up at the Temple he may have done better. He was intimidated by the daunting task before him and became frustrated with the lack of harmony in the bond. He hated that verbal directions in battle were still needed after 10 years of a partnership; that their movements were still not in perfect synch. He was questioned and defied by Anakin as he had never dared to treat Qui-Gon. As no Temple-raised Padawan would dream of treating their Master.

I observed the separation of the two Jedi as they each went on their own missions. Kenobi to track down my assassin. Skywalker to protect the little Senator he doted upon so clearly. I paid the little Padawan no mind. I had other obligations to keep up with; watching a mere slip of a boy was not one of them. I kept an eye out for the Master, however. I knew he was a substantial threat to me if I were ever caught unawares. Negotiations were beginning between I and other Separatist planets, and they required my attention. So, sending my bounty hunter home, I prepared for a long series of politics on an obscure planet called Geonosis. Most of my 'clients' were no more than various warlords, thugs, and criminals. Hardly the image of righteous rebellion.

In the middle of these talks, the bounty hunter I had used for the attempted assassination showed up with his son in tow. He claimed that the Jedi Knight Kenobi had managed to track him down and had discovered the clone army being produced. On Fett's flight here, the Jedi had tracked him yet again, though was killed in the asteroids. Jango was afraid of who else Obi-Wan may have told before dying. He did not want an Order of Jedi out for his blood for supplying the cloners and especially for killing one of their own.

While I doubted very much the death of young Kenobi, I knew that even if the Jedi Council knew of the clones, they would likely do nothing. It was what they were best at. Besides, technically, nothing wrong had happened in the creation of clones. No one, as of yet, had been harmed because of them. And unless someone came to the Jedi for aid, the Order was powerless to stop it.

Just as I predicted, a day later, we received another visitor. It was my little grandson playing the part of detective still. Capturing him was not an issue. That was when I had an idea. My Master had been worrying me as of late. I knew that he was not trying to free the galaxy from corruption; he was turning his position into that of a dictatorship.

The pieces were going to be falling very quickly. Soon a new power would emerge even worse than the last one. This was not the future I wanted. Perhaps I could still do something. But I needed help. Help that was powerful and strong. I needed Qui-Gon.

But all I had was his legacy.

It would have to do.

Needless to say my reception from the boy was not the warmest. Traitor he called me! He looked at me like I was so much filth that needed eradicating. He loathed me for turning from the Jedi. Believed that I was of the same mettle as the brat Xanatos who had broken my Padawan's heart. I could feel his contempt for me for doing that which he despised the most. How dare he accuse me of such treachery! I loved Qui-Gon like my own son! I would never hurt him the way that evil boy did!

I had to keep my temper in check if I was to gain his trust. Two angry minds would get us nowhere. I spoke fondly of his Master who had in turn spoke fondly of Obi-Wan. I said as much, hoping that the boy and I could find common ground on which to stand. We didn't have to be enemies.

I even told him of the Sith Lord, risking everything to gain his confidence. Told him of the Jedi's blindness to the Master Sith who sat in the very Senate room under the protection of the Jedi Council. I dared not give the name. For if my Master ever caught wind of this conversation, I would wish for death before the end. I was not so foolish as to give the whole game away. Besides, I hoped that if I caught the boy's attention with the information I was willing to release, he would agree to help. Or at the very least a truce. Then we could go somewhere where we would not be overheard and I could reveal all.

He flat out refused me! He believed that if he joined forces with me, then he would be dishonoring everything he had ever been taught. In a way he was right, but he didn't... wouldn't see the whole picture! I had expected more of him. Perhaps I was expecting too much. In the end he was just like the other Jedi back at the Temple… unable and unwilling to see the truth, even when I told them right out! How could that Knight be so blind?! I had to leave the room to cool my thoughts before I struck out at him in anger. That stupid stupid boy! He was dooming everyone he held so dear by refusing me! That was no matter. I did not need him anyway. I could do this without the help of the Jedi.

But there was still the issue of Obi-Wan. The Jedi would surely come after him as soon as they realized his predicament. He had to disappear. Shipping him off planet was too expensive and wouldn't hold him long. Letting him go was out of the question. Only one option remained.

I did not wish to execute the one link I had left of my Padawan. I knew that Qui-Gon's heart would break where it now existed in the Force. But I had no other option. He drove me to this. He and his persistent stubbornness and denial. He had to be sacrificed for the greater good.

I did not really expect him to die. I knew he had escaped much more dire situations than this. Even when we caught his feeble rescue party of a Padawan and Senator. Some part of me knew this would not be the death the Force had in store of Knight Kenobi.

Things happened as I predicted and the three prisoners proved themselves once again to be worthy adversaries. What I did not expect was the large Jedi force that arrived so soon, nor the clone army I ordered used against me. I had no choice but to flee to protect the top secret plans my Master had given me.

I took no pleasure in beating both Kenobi and Skywalker in battle. It was not my skill that saved me, but their own disunity. If they had had the connection that Obi-Wan and Qui-Gon had, I would have stood no chance. I took no pride in their fall nor glee at their injuries. But even as I stared down at the disfigured form of Skywalker and his remaining arm, I did not feel so much regret that I would grant them mercy.

Nor did I take any joy in being able to hold my own against my former Master. I knew Yoda had known I was behind all this for a while. He may even have foreseen it before I was even born. Yet the disappointment and sadness I saw in his eyes cut me like I didn't think it could. All my life I had always yearned and worked for his approval and respect. It was something I now could never have.

I also knew that I was no match for him. All the power I attained during my dark apprenticeship was nothing but child's play to him. We both knew this. I had to resort to a mere distraction in order to escape with the plans. If I did not have such an important mission to fulfill, I may have just let my old Master kill me as was his right. But I could not let my personal dilemmas take precedence. There were larger things at work than me.

In the end I was forced to run like a coward to protect plans that I was growing more unsure of by the day. I blame the Jedi for bringing me to this. I blame them for my dear Padawan's death which started this whole cycle. It wasn't the knighting of a prodigy Padawan or the death of a young Sith nor was it the discovery of the prophesied Chosen One. Only the cutting down of a great man by his own people before his time. I blame the Jedi for driving me to the Sith. And I blame them for their stupid pride and blindness that will not heed my constant warnings.

I hear the Republic has traitors in their midst.

Oh yes.

Yes there are.

Here there be traitors.

Stupid blind traitors…

FIN

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