Author's Note: This story is based around what happened in my gameplay during "Knights of the Old Republic 1". There will be lots and lots of game plot/game end spoilers in this story if you have not played "Knights of the Old Republic 1 OR 2! (This story will cross the gap between the first and second games.) So if you have not played either game and plan to, and don't want to know what's going to happen to your character, DO NOT READ this fic. (In fact stop reading NOW. Go on, leave if you're going to... are you gone yet?) ...If you have played both games before, then you need only know this: in my game Revan was female and Dark Side, and after Carth ran off at the final confrontation on the unknown planet, he did NOT show up again. This fic is my closure to that loose end. Hope you enjoy!
There was blood in the sand; dark pools beneath the bodies of the people he had used to know. He tried not to see them, to ignore them. He had seen death before, many times. He had witnessed the murder of those he fought alongside in war more often than he ever wished to remember. But this... He closed his eyes as he passed what was left of Mission and Zaalbar, letting his feet carry him onward blindly, toward the boarding ramp of the Ebon Hawk. The ship was his only hope... perhaps the Republic's only hope. He had to get off this planet... he had to warn them...
He stumbled as his feet abruptly hit the edge of the ramp, and opening his eyes once more, he scrambled up into the dark interior of the freighter. He jogged along the abandoned hallways, his mind racing so fast it felt numb. Part of him still refused to believe it; the other part of him accepted the truth with a bitter sense of self-loathing. He had seen this coming. He had seen the signs, he had heard the confession himself, and yet his foolishness had prevented him from acting on his suspicions. He had allowed his feelings to override his sense, something he had sworn never to do again long ago. He had allowed Revan's sweet-sounding lies to calm his worries, to weaken his guard, to ignite hope in him once more. After all his years of suffering from the betrayal of Saul... after all his vows to never trust anyone again... after all his efforts to remain completely emotionally independent from anyone... he had fallen right back into the trap.
Friendship, comraderie, loyalty... love.
And he had been betrayed. Again.
The hatred was intense, burning within his chest like a superheated sun. He hated Revan. He hated her even more than he had hated Saul Karath. Saul had destroyed his home, killed his wife, and estranged his son, wiping out everything that made his life worth living. For too many years it had been the thought of watching Saul die that had kept him alive and going. But he hated Revan more, because she had been the one - the only one - who had ever been able to ease that pain... to fill that hole that had been left by the destruction of his former life. He had just begun to feel whole again when she had revealed who she really was. And he had just begun to believe that maybe she had changed her ways when she had turned on him... when she had turned on all of them.
He staggered into the cockpit, grasping the back of the pilot's chair for support. The thought of it all made him sick. She had given him hope, a purpose other than revenge. She had almost built him back up into the man he had used to be before the betrayal of Saul. And then she had taken it all away, shattering all the truths his world relied on and proving him to be a fool. Only a fool would allow himself to be used twice. Only a fool would have fallen for the same tricks.
Carth threw himself into the pilot's chair, hardly noticing the tears that blurred his vision. His fingers worked over the keys on their own accord; his mind was still far away from the duties of piloting. It was his fault Revan now had control of the Star Forge. If he had only acted sooner, when he had first had his doubts about her intentions... none of this would have happened. Revan would now be dead, Jolee and Mission and Zaalbar still alive, the Star Forge destroyed, the Republic victorious at last...
The engines rumbled to life, sending a slight vibration through the floor beneath Carth's feet. He would not hesitate again. If he ever got to Revan he would kill her, and he would take satisfaction from it, just like he had at Saul's death, only her death would be sweeter. But first he had to warn the Republic about the Star Forge, about Revan. They had to know she had betrayed them.
"So there you are, Onasi."
Carth sprang out of the chair, blaster drawn and ready faster than could be seen, and stood facing the black-robed figure casually leaning against the cockpit's doorway. Even his hatred could not cover his surprise at seeing Darth Revan here again, so soon after she had left for the Star Forge. He had not expected her to come back at all. "You!" he snarled, but he wasted no time. His finger tightened on the trigger.
The blaster bolt ricocheted off an unseen barrier just before striking Revan between the eyes, but Carth hardly had time to register this fact before the blaster jerked out of his hand and an invisible force came crushing down on his windpipe. He choked, both hands going to his throat, groping futilely at nothing.
Revan smiled from the doorway, and Carth was overcome with a vehement desire to strangle her even as she was strangling him now. He saw his blaster lying only a few feet away, but it seemed an impossible distance; already a panic was rising in his chest, his head beginning to throb, his ears roaring. He dropped to his knees, gagging in his attempt to breathe.
Revan walked lazily to his side. "I'm surprised you risked coming back to the ship, Carth," she said conversationally, her voice dim beneath the rushing in his ears. "I had thought you would have rather rotted away on this island rather than chance meeting me again."
Carth struggled to reply, but his anger was swiftly fading as the realization dawned that he was dying. Revan's voice seemed to come from far away. He was on his hands and knees, looking at her boots. He wondered vaguely if they had always been so dusty. His lungs were screaming, a vein his temple pulsed frantically.
"I'm sure you thought this ship would offer you escape. But you must understand I cannot allow you to warn the Republic of their impending doom." She knelt beside him, calmly watching him struggle in her vice-like Force grasp. "I've always liked you, Carth. And it's such a shame to kill you. Such hatred within you... if only you were Force sensitive..." She sighed. "But you've had your uses, haven't you? I can safely say that if not for you I would have never been able to reach the Star Forge. I suppose I should thank you."
Carth lunged at her suddenly, rage exploding within him. But in his disoriented state she easily leapt away from him, and he crashed back to the floor. He tried to get up again, but his body felt heavy. He could do nothing but lie there and wait to die. Black crept around the edges of his vision, slowly swallowing up the world, and he tried to fight it. He didn't want to die like this. Not by her hand. Not so helplessly, without offering a challenge...
Her voice echoed in the darkness, and then there was nothing.
TO BE CONTINUED...