A/N: So I beat KotOR II yesterday. Before my little brother! happy dance This is what came of it. Just the first chapter of …who knows how many. I don't know how far I'm taking this. But anyway, this fic contains a lot of spoilers (to both games)…and this IS the beta version. Note to self. Get a beta reder. That actually works. coughcough
-Lady SephirothTell Her
"Tell her…that Carth Onasi is waiting for her."
Those had been his last words to the exile, before the woman had taken off in the Ebon Hawk to near-certain death on the dead planet of Malachor V, the site of the most terrible atrocity in the Mandalorian War, where she was to face the true threat that had been gathering.
It had been five days since they left.
Admiral Carth Onasi entertained no notions of knowing exactly what was going on, but he knew in his heart that the exile and her faithful companions needed to go there, or else the Republic, his precious Republic would fall. It had already come so close just five years previous, and it would have perished, had it not been for himself, the twi'lek and wookiee, the Jedi, the Mandalorian, the droids…and her.
For five long years had he waited for her. For five long years he wished for the Jedi to be in his arms, her hands upon his chest, his arms around her slender waist as he breathed in her scent. For five long years he dreamed of her. Lithe body, soft hands, long black hair—always kept back in a ponytail, of course. She was perfection. His perfection. Though firstly wary of her, he had grown to love her. Everything, from that bemused expression perpetually on her face to the way she stood, one hip extended slightly, an open reminder to everything that though a beautiful woman, she was fully capable of defending herself against whatever threat happened to come against her or those she loved.
She had killed Malak, because he threatened not only her, but also everyone and everything else she held dear. Revan had saved Bastila from the darkside, had done the same with Juhani.
Yet that hadn't been enough. Too soon after the ceremony that awarded the group for their bravery and preservation of the Republic, more fighting broke out, and Revan, his Revan, left because she knew that she was needed to fight whatever this new threat was.
"I can't take the people I love," she had told him, before stepping out of his life forever, Jedi robes billowing behind her, face hidden so that he would not see the tears that were forming in her clear green eyes. But one did not need Jedi perception to know they were there, that she too had fallen in love.
Since her departure, Carth had entertained other notions in his head. Deep down he knew that she simply didn't want him to get hurt wherever it was that she was going, but a part of him wondered if perhaps she had simply left because of those feelings, knowing the Jedi's stance on love and attachment.
"Pulling a Bindo," he remarked softly to himself, staring out the window of the TSF office on Citadel Station. "I do hope you're okay, old man," he continued, his mind temporarily away from thoughts of his beautiful Revan, and on the old Jedi that had also aided in the fight against Malak.
No one knew where Jolee Bindo was, only that he was not among the countless Jedi to have been killed on the Miraluka world, as Juhani was, and that the bounty hunters operating out of Nar Shadaa had not claimed him as a prize. Perhaps he was back on the wookiee homeworld, or perhaps he was simply in hiding, as the rest of the Jedi were.
The rest of the Jedi. That got his mind back on the Exile, believed by many to be the last of them. He knew better, but apparently the rest of the galaxy didn't. And now…now the woman was the Republic's last hope. Strange how it worked out that way.
He could almost see pieces of Revan in the Exile. When it came to looks, Revan and she were much different, with the Exile sporting a blonde look and blue eyes in stark contrast to Revan's black hair and green orbs. But they wore their hair the same, in that low ponytail, and both had an aura of calmness, of light around them. And the Exile, she too had that same "don't mess with me" posture, and from what he had seen and heard, the woman was definitely Revan's equal when it came to battle.
But she too had left, along with her friends, much in the same way that Revan had taken everyone to the Star Forge five years ago. And there was no doubt in Carth's mind that the Exile would be going on alone at some point, to defeat whatever secret evil was threatening the Republic now…. just the same as Revan had to face Malak, her former apprentice, alone.
Everything was counting on them, too. With luck—no, the Force willing, they would bring peace to the galaxy again. Carth allowed himself a tight smile. If he knew Mical, then things would go well. With that man at the Exile's side, no harm would come to her. And not for the first time he wondered why exactly the scientist was calling himself "Disciple," but the admiral quickly shoved that thought away, as it really had little to do with anything.
Instead his mind focused for a moment on the Exile's companions. Anything was better than thinking about Revan, and the continuous void she was leaving in his life.
There was the bounty hunter, a feisty little redhead whom Carth had no doubt would fight to the end for whatever she felt was righteous. Same with the little droid—he hadn't mentioned that T3 had also accompanied him five years ago, but somehow he knew that information would become known if necessity required it.
And then there was also Mandalore and HK-47. Another tight smile crossed Carth's face as he thought of Canderous Ordo. Good for him, he mused, harboring no more ill will against the Mandalorians for the chaos they had infused throughout the galaxy, even though that had caused Revan's original fall—but had it not been for the fall, she never would have entered his life. But HK-47? He never liked that droid much. He hoped the tall robot wouldn't cause the Exile too much trouble.
His thoughts then drifted to the last two. Visas Marr and Atton Rand. Both devoted completely to the Exile. He figured the woman, the Miraluka, was simply grateful for redemption, but Atton…he knew the look in that man's eyes. It was the same that he had when gazing upon Revan.
"I should have warned him," Carth said softly, finally turning away from the window and stepping toward the door of the TSF office. "Warned him what falling in love with a Jedi would do to a man."
Enough, he commanded himself. There really was no time for this. Just in case the Exile and her companions were unable to defeat the threat, he needed to be ready. The Republic needed to be ready. It was his responsibility to make sure that the fleet was ready and that every Republic world remained safe. The destruction of Telos would not happen again, he vowed. Nor would the bombing of Dantoonine.
Not while he was on watch.
Swiftly the admiral walked out of the office and down the pathway, stopping for a moment at the cantina door. Since the Sith invasion, it had been closed, but he could hear crews inside cleaning it up and getting it back in business order. For a moment he entertained the notion of using his rank and prestige to get in there now, in order to grab a bottle of fine Corellian ale before returning his the flagship. Force knew he needed a drink about now.
Before Carth could make up his mind, his comlink flashed. "Admiral Onasi here," he replied quickly, choosing at that instant to just walk on away from the cantina. "What's going on?"
A buzz answered him, then a slightly garbled woman's voice. "Sir…w..we are getting a sig…from the Ebo…awk. Tracto…in now."
"Right. I'll be right there!"
With a sudden burst of hope in his heart, Carth took off at a fast pace, stepping around the various TSF officers and Khoonda militiamen who were still searching for anymore traces of Sith fighters. It was only a short distance to the shuttle, and from there a mere five minutes back to his ship. And from there? He didn't know what was going to happen, other than the return of the Ebon Hawk was likely good news.
And as predicted, within just a few minutes, Carth was emerging from the Citadel Station shuttle back onto his flagship, where Colonel Elise Sten and Lieutenant Brengin'Dyor were waiting for him, both the human woman and the twi'lek male with large smiles on their faces.
"Sir," Elise began, offering a hand to help Carth out of the shuttle, which was politely refused. "The crew of the Ebon Hawk has returned, and the threat on Malachor V is no more!" There was no mistaking the exuberance in her voice, nor the happiness in Brengin'Dyor's dark orange eyes.
The twi'lek quickly continued. "Yes, sir. We've won! The Jedi aboard say that the Sith threat is eradicated!"
Carth nodded, allowing another smile to tug at the corners of his lips. "Excellent. Now where are they, I really want to talk to them."
"They're in the medical bay, Admiral. A few of them, like Ms. Mira, are pretty torn up," Elise offered, taking a step back to allow her superior officer some room, knowing that he would want no impediment to getting there as quickly as humanly possible to discover exactly what had happened on the dead world of Malachor V.
He didn't have long to wait. Disregarding all professionalism Carth took off at a dead run toward the medical bay, ignoring the concerned looks of the various officers. As he ran, he collided with several, as both were too intent on their own affairs to look out for the other. But despite the slight setbacks, Admiral Carth Onasi was racing through the door to the medical bay.
Five men and woman were being treated. Disciple was busy attending to Mira's severe lacerations while a medical droid was busy wrapping a bandage around the man's leg. Visas Marr was busy with a male attendant, insisting that she needed no medical treatment despite the blood pouring from a wound near her right temple. Bao-Dur was standing slightly aside, tinkering with his fake arm with a far-off glaze in his eyes. Carth noted the lack of his small remote droid, but chose not to say anything about that as he glanced at the other end of the room to see Atton, with his back to everyone else, sitting upon a bed, one arm holding the other.
Missing...he realized. The droids were being taken care of mechanically, but there was someone missing from the team. The Exile. Sithspit.
"What happened?" he ventured softly, daring to step further in.
Bao-Dur looked up, then shook his head and tried to smile, and failed. "She saved us. She saved us all. Kreia will not bother the general—or the galaxy, any longer."
Carth wanted to ask where she was, but a low growl from Atton's direction quickly changed his mind. "Then the Republic is safe again?" For how long? He added mentally.
Finally succumbing to insistence of the attendant, Visas sat down and allowed him to begin treating her wound. The man removed her headpiece, letting her short jet-black hair fall to her shoulders and revealing her sightless white eyes. "She defeated my former Master, she defeated Lord Sion, and she also defeated Darth Traya, who had us all fooled from the beginning."
"Not all of us!" Atton shouted out, turning around glaring at Visas. "I knew that old hag was trouble from the beginning, but no one believed me! And now she took off, following the last bit of advice that old witch gave her!"
Carth blinked once, then looked from Atton to Mical, who he knew would give him the information he needed. "Pardon?"
Disciple nodded. "She left for the Unknown Regions. Following in Revan's footsteps, to weed out the evil that has been plaguing the Republic for so long."
Instantly, Carth took a step back. His brown eyes went back to Atton, who had since turned his back to the others again. In that moment, he felt a strange sense of camaraderie with the man. Now he wasn't alone. Someone else had lost their Jedi love. "I see," Carth responded dully.
Yes. He could see. He could see Atton resisting the urge to haul off and punch him for such a dry and seemingly unfeeling comment, and he could see the pain, the rejection that the man felt at the loss of his Exile. Carth Onasi was not a very sensitive man, but he could see anguish when it was sitting right there in front of him.
And then he was reminded of his own pain at the loss of Revan. His next words were caught in an unexpected sob in the back of his throat. "Revan did the same. I do see, dammit!" he murmured, before abruptly turning and walking away from the group of heroes.
That Corellian ale was sounding awfully good right now.