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The Ways of the Force

Part 4: New Friends

Dromund Kaas the capital world of the Empire. The planet is always dark and rainy. The winds howl like it is in pain, the atmosphere ripples in dark energies of the force. The planet is filled with ancient ruins from the past. One such ancient ruin stands out most of all and it is located outside of Kaas City most people call it the Dark Temple. The emperor long ago buried his most loyal followers and some enemies as well. The Temple is filled with ancient tombs of Dark Lords of the Sith. It is forbidden for many to enter the Dark Temple. Just outside the temple a dark figure stands outside in the rain and wind.

Ibben looked at the Dark Temple for awhile he felt the dark energies that were emitting from the temple. After spending a few minutes outside he started to make his way inside. The air inside was still stale even with the large entrance being open so long. Before coming to the Dark Temple, Ibben was briefed on what his goals were. Primary goal is to locate an ancient holocron of Lord Calhern, secondary goals are to locate original reclamation team to uncover the artifact. Contact was has been lost for well over a week. The Dark Temple had a reputation of people going in but never coming out. Ancient Sith Lords have awakened in the deep recesses of the temple and have been causing issues for many teams sent. Initial reports have indicated that the personal of the teams sent into the temple have been possessed by the Sith Lords. Ibben's additional orders are to execute anyone that stands in his way.

As he enters the temple he is greeted by degrange explorers charging to attack. Ibben's wastes no time in dispatching the madmen with quick precious saber attacks. He looks at the corspes of the men before contiuning on. For some reason he felt like he was being watched. He contiuned on his way inside, in the shadows of the ruins someone was watching him. Rain drops beaded down on the stalker's helm, steam coming from the mouth ventilation slits in the helm. When they felt Ibben was far enough into the Temple they contiuned tracking him getting closer to there goal.

On a distant planet far from Dromund Kaas another wrapped in robes was walking into a Temple, she found peace walking into the Jedi Temple. After the long flight from Corusant, Silvara just wanted to rest, but she had to check in with the Jedi Council. She stopped at the large door. She let the Jedi guarding know of her appointment. They bowed and let her in; she walked down the short hall to an open room with a large table with many comfortable chairs around it in a circle. Several of the Council members were there in either holocom or in person. A single voice spoke. "Padawan, Silvara we read your report on Taris we are thankful you are alive. We have commited many in search of Master Eldren it is only a matter of time. We know you have travelled far you must be tired. Please seek rest in Jedi Temple walk its grounds find serenity, we will summon you again when we have your next assignment." The female voice spoke. Silvara bowed and walked out of the chambers. She sighed heavily she knew her body was tired, but her mind was still restless. She decided to take a walk, it was her first time here on Tython, and she spent all of her training off world. It is rare that a Padawan is trained off world.

As she walked the grounds of the Jedi Temple her thoughts brought her back to Taris. She was worried for her Master, but she had to remain strong. She had to remind herself that there is no emotion there was only peace. Silvara found herself on a rock look at a small waterfall. The scene made her calm; Silvara knew she will find her master. After about thrity minutes her thoughts were interupted. "Excuse me, but why are you just standing there" The female twi'lek spoke. Silvara opened her eyes and turned around. "I'm enjoying the view." Silvara answered. The Twi'lek looked at the view herself and nodded in agreement. "I agree." She spoke. Silvara looked over the girl and realized she was a padawan herself. "Are you a Padawan?" Silvara asked. The twi'lek nodded. "Yes I am, are you a Jedi?" She asked in return. Silvara gave a light chuckle. "I am not I'm afraid. I'm a Padawan myself." She answered. Twi'lek gave her a look of skeptism. "You look like a full fledge Jedi. I want to be a Jedi, but the council won't give me my knighthood.." The twi'lek said.

Silvara sense great potiential but a lot of impatience too. "Be patient my friend, when they feel you are ready you will be a Jedi." Silvara said. "I know but I want to get off this blasted planet and do good I am destined to do bigger things!" The Twi'lek said. Silvara inwardly sighed. She remembered when she was like this not too long ago. "I sense you have great potiential but you are also very impatient, you must be at peace before you can contiune surely the Council sees the same as I." Silvara said. The Twi'lek grumbled and looked up at Silvara. "I'm Zay and you?" Zay asked. Silvara gave a light smile "Silvara, A pleasure to meet you Zay." She replied. Zay nodded. "Are you training too?" Zay asked. Silvara shook her head. "No, I'm currently waiting to speak to the Council on another matter. This is my first time to Tython." Silvara said. Zay eyes widen. "You are trained off world? That is great I always wanted that. You are very lucky." Zay said.

Silvara gave a light chuckle at Zay's comment. "I'm sure you have much to learn here." Silvara replied. The Twi'lek nodded. "Yea that reminds me I should get back to my trials. Take care Silvara perhaps we will run into each other again." Zay said as she ran off. Silvara nodded and waved. "Take care of yourself." Silvara said as she hopped off the rock and walked back toward the Temple to find her room and rest till she was summoned.

As Silvara rested in her room, dark forces were at work. At a classified location in Imperial space a Jedi was screaming in pain. "It will all end soon you miserable Jedi wretch when you sumbit to our will." The voice spoke. Master Eldren felt his insides burning with the Rakghoul virus; he knew he didn't have much time before he was going to be one of them. The only thing preventing him fully changing was the force. Master Eldren was determined to live long enough for a rescue. "Ne..Never. I am at peace." He spoke with weak voice. The voice angered "You are a fool. It's just a matter of time before you succumb to the virus. There is no hope for you." The voice said.

Behind the mirrored window the researcher was frustrated. The Jedi should have turned by now. He knew once his new virus took the Jedi, the Jedi would be able to control a horde of Rakghouls himself. He just needed to figure out how to break the Jedi down without killing him. He was so lost in his thoughts he didn't hear another figure walk up to him. "And how is your number one patient today, Dr. Sarlin?" The figure spoke. The doctor was startled. "Lord Syng." He bowed. "I wasn't told you have arrived." He said. "A Sith doesn't need to announce his arrivial, what is the Jedi whats his status?" Lord Syng said. The Doctor turned to look back at the Jedi. "As you can see my Lord he is highly resistant to the new virus. I suspect it is because of his Jedi training." The doctor said. "The force is strong with this Jedi." Syng said. "My lord do you have any thoughts on how to break his defenses?" Dr. Sarlin asked. Lord Syng chuckled. "Of course my dear doctor, my apprentice is getting what we need." Lord Syng said. "I take it some Sith device?" The Doctor asked. "Yes, it is located in the Dark Temple. The holocron device will break this Jedi. He doesn't have much time." Lord Syng chuckles. The doctor nodded and contiuned observing the Jedi.

Back at the Dark Temple, Ibben was making his way inside. He felt his mental defenses being tested by the ancients that are here. His goal was to reach the Tomb of Lord Nemeron. Ibben killed many deranged slaves that were use in various projects here. As he reached the Tomb he saw many bodies lying around dead. Ibben scanned the area quickly then scanned the dead bodies with his cybernetic eye in infred mode. He wanted to see the body tempature to determine how long they were dead for. The results of the scan revealed they were dead long and were killed by blaster fire. Then he heard the wizzing sound of a missle attack coming behind him. He easily dodges the missle and look for the attacker. The attacker stood at the other end of the hallway, they were wearing Mandolarian Armor. Ibben narrowed his eyes on his target. Then to his surprise they walked close to him. As they did Ibben made out the features better in the little light the Temple provided. It was a female hunter; she stopped a few feet from Ibben he couldn't make out the feature of her face they were well hidden behind her helmet.

A few minutes of silence went by before she spoke. "Are you the Sith scum that killed my fellow clan members in the jungle?" She asked. Ibben a bit taken back by the question "Which hunters specifically are you referring too. I don't keep track on which I kill." He replied. His replied angered her. "You know the ones that were at the most southern camp along the river." She said. Ibben remembered. The hunters there were capturing Imperial Soldiers for Lord Grathan's cybernetic experiments. "I remember then, they were commiting crimes against the Empire. They had to be dealt with." Ibben spoke. Inraged by his answer she charged him with everything she had. Ibben dodged her punch and quickly used her momentum against her by pushing her in current direction.

She came to a stop and turned around firing a missle at him. The missle seemed to hit its mark, but once the smoke cleared Ibben was still standing, the missle detonated two feet from its target leaving a small crater. The hunter was a bit shocked at this. She never faced a Sith but to her it didn't' matter she wanted justice for her dead clan members. "You..You bastard!" She yelled out to him. Ibben sense much rage in her but yet saddness. Far as he was concerned his mission was over at the riverbed that day. He didn't want to kill this hunter he saw potiential for her. "Hunter they fought bravely that day at the riverbed, but I did what had to be done. I do not wish to kill you, but if you force my hand I will have no choice but to see you suffer as they did." Ibben spoke.

This shocked the hunter even more. Deep down she knew what her and fellow hunters were doing was against the Empire. But they were paid for a job and they were doing what they were being paid for. Her thoughts came to an end when the tomb down busted down. She was caught in the blast and went flying with the debris. Ibben covered his head. He peeked up to see what cause the explosion but all he saw was darkness. Then a voice spoke. "Who disturbs Lord Nemeron." The ancient sith lord spoke. Ibben dusted himself off. "I am here for your holocron, Nemeron." Ibben spoke. The mysterious hunter shakes off the shellshock of the explosion. She look at the Sith she wants to kill and the opened tomb she gets the gist of what Ibben said. Then Nemeron spoke "You must be fool to have awakened me little Sith. You will find nothing here but your death." Nemeron said. The hunter spoke her questioned directed to her target "Who is talking, Sith?" She asked. Ibben didn't look to the hunter he just spoke in reply "It seems we have awoken an ancient Sith Lord, hunter. I suggest you get out of here." The answer stunned the hunter. "I will not leave till you are dead." She said. When she said that an apparition appeared and force pushed her farther back she impacted the ground hard. She looked up at the ghost that appeared at her. "You will do nicely for a warm up." Nemeron spoke.

Ibben quickly ran over and placed himself between Nemeron and the hunter. "Your quarrel is with me, Nemeron, the hunter has her own path to follow." Ibben said. The apparition looked surprised. "Doesn't she want to kill you?" He asked. Ibben nodded. "Indeed, and we were getting to our duel before you interupted I will not have you get in the way of that." Ibben spoke. Nemeron thought deeply for a moment in the meantime the hunter got herself together and stood up. "I don't need your help you Sith scum." She said firmly. Ibben didn't say anything just focused on Nemeron. She was about to attack again but stopped when Nemeron spoke. "I sense great strength in you little Sith. You also walk a path of honor, yet I also sense great pain and anger in you, it fuels you. Tell me little Sith what is your name?" Nemeron asked. "Ibben." Ibben replied. "Ah Ibben, a strange name, I could easily kill you and the hunter here, but I won't, something tells me you have another destiny." Nemeron spoke his voice lightens up since he first awakened.

This comes to a shock to both Ibben and the mysterious hunter. "My Master requested me to retrieve your ancient holocron, my lord." Ibben said. Nemeron nodded. "Then it is yours, you have proven to me you have no fear to reach your goals." Nemeron said. "Thank you my lord." Ibben replied. The hunter grew in anger. "What about our duel, Sith!" She said. Nemeron chuckled. "Come now hunter do you think you could have killed him if you wanted too?" He asked. The hunter shook her head, she knew she was too green to face a full trained Sith in combat. "I guess you have a point, but I want justice for my clan." She said. Ibben turned around and looked at her. "Hunter, I know what it is to loose people you are close too, I too have suffered great in justice and I will not stop, I will not rest till that person gets what is coming to him. However you may travel with me and when the day comes I have gotten my vengence we will duel." Ibben said.

Ibben's statement shocked Nemeron. "You are willing to give her a chance to kill you then?" He asked. Ibben nodded. "Correct." He replied. "Then take the holocron and go. Carve a blood path of vengence, both of you." Nemeron spoke and disappeared. Ibben walked into the tomb and retreived the holocron and when he emerged the hunter was standing there. She was in deep thought about what Ibben said. She was confused by the Sith's attitude. She has always heard Sith are ruthless and dishonorable yet this one has shown her nothing but honor. "Did you mean what you said about given me my chance to avenge my clan?" She asked. "I did, hunter." He replied. "Then I accept your word, Sith." She said. Ibben nodded and began walking out of the Temple. She was shocked that he was just leaving and she quickly walked to catch up. "Hey where are you going?" she asked. "To meet up with my Master and give him this holocron." Ibben replied. "Oh. What is a holocron?" She asked. "It's a Sith data device to put it in simple terms." Ibben spoke. The hunter just nodded and followed along. "You said I can travel with you?" She asked. Ibben stopped. "I did, hunter if you want this way I don't run from our agreement." He said. The hunter took off her mask and revealed her face. "Then I accept your offer again Sith. By the way my name is Kalakia." She said. Ibben started to walk again "Then welcome aboard, Kalakia." He said. The two made their way back to the Dromund Kaas spaceport.

Back on Tython, Silvara was summoned to the Council Chambers. There she gave the council her full report on what happen on Taris. "Padawan, do you think that this defection was already in the works prior to arriving at the Outpost?" One of the masters asked. "I believe it was, Master, as I said in my report many of the troopers assigned there were denied any sort of leave time. Also as I said in my report that the head researcher there had an Imperial accent." Silvara replied. "You also said they created these smart Rakgouls not the Nekghouls that we already know about?" Another master asked. "Correct, they were Rakghouls, but they acted more like pack animals like Nexu. They shown signs of high intelligence and one of them was certainly leading the pack." Silvara replied. "Thank you, Padawan we all know that the last few weeks haven't been easy for you. However we have two concerns, one is our missing Jedi and two the defectors and their research. We believe that the defectors and the research should be priority." A member of the council said. Silvara was going to say something but was interuppted by the same master. "Though we are confident that Master Eldren is still alive with the defectors, as you said in your report they told you that he has some role to play with their research. Because of this we believe that once we find them we will find Master Eldren." The master finished.

"Then I will find them and Master Eldren." Silvara said. One of the Jedi stood up and spoke. "This is the councils wish as well, Padawan. Because we are dealing with military defectors we are going to be working with the Republic Army as well. They have provided us a newly put together Special Forces Team they have code named, Hellion Squad. You will be assigned to them as the Jedi commander, with your time on Taris with Sgt. Jadwinsky's team you have proven yourself military certified." The man said. Silvara was relived to hear she would be going on this assignment. Her thoughts were interupted by the Master Jedi speaking again. "You are to report on Corusant at the 172nd Spec Force Headquarters to meet with General Vyrin." He finished. Silvara nodded and turned on her heels to walk out the door. The masters watched her walk out of the room. "Do you think she will be able to handle this, she is only a Padawan?" One of the masters spoke. The master that gave Silvara her assignment spoke. "I believe she will be able too and I am sure that Master Eldren would agree." He replied. The other masters nodded and contiuned with other business.