The galaxy darkened. War was looming on the horizon, and death was about to ravish every corner of the Galactic Empire. For years now the Emperor has commanded unquestionable authority. Authority he had gained after destroying the Jedi order, eliminating the Separatists and ending the Clone Wars. It was a strange thing that his rule would be so utterly shaken. His power so easily undermined by a war that was not so different than the one he came to power upon.
There were forces at play here that trillions didn't have even an inkling of. The most important of these unknowing peoples was the Emperor himself. He did not know that his "broken," apprentice was working in collusion with Exar Kun to utterly destroy him and his power-base. He had not a clue that a child he ordered into creation was now the loyal apprentice of Kun and doing all he could to propel his master towards glory and ultimate power. He didn't know Vaders' apprentice was waiting for the same chance to move his own master to unstoppable power. Had not a clue that the very people he stripped of power were waiting for the moment to strike and unleash upon his empire a great tragedy. Or that a woman he wanted dead was about to accumulate power enough to rise up and threaten his dominance.
The hour of awakening and reckoning was upon the whole of the galaxy.
That was yet to come. As Exar Kun found himself surrounded by dozens of senators in the meeting halls of the Imperial Senate building.
(Coruscant, Imperial Senate Building, Five Minutes after session of Congress)
Exar stood smiling and shaking the hand of the relatively new senator of Kuat. He hadn't actually caught the mans name but felt he didn't need it. After all he knew the man was practically bowing at his feet with praises, and even a small hint of gratitude. Exar gave the man his gratitude in return and waved him off as he continued to meander about the room that reeked of aristocratic pompousness, and self assured arrogance. The force felt like leaking oil in the room, but Kun knew that it wasn't the Emperors presence that brought the stench into the building.
'These "people" are quite the bootlickers aren't they?' The dark lord thought as he passed several men who bowed to him in further respect. He gave a quick nod and smile in return and moved onwards. 'Haha, the praise must be quite annoying to his majesty! Sadly for him I quite like it!' He thought chuckling himself.
However Exar had someone more important he just had to speak to! Ah yes, the senator of Alderaan had been on his mind since he acknowledged the man in the senate not too long ago. He so wanted to see the mans face, and his reaction in person, and he needed to insure the little senator continued to play the wonderful game they had begun back on Alderaan!
'After all my dear friend, how can you not just love this game! The stakes have been raised, the value tripled, and the cost immeasurable! What's not to love about politics really?' Again he chuckled to himself as he squeezed through two senators talking amongst themselves. He was fast approaching the entryway of the Alderaanian delegation pod, and he was bristling with anticipation!
He approached and noticed that many senators were standing about, talking and discussing; the usual. However Kun sensed through the force that many seemed perplexed and even annoyed to some degree. 'Whatever is their problem?' He asked himself, but soon grinned when he reached the Alderaanian repulsorpod entrance. 'Ah yes. I had forgot he wasn't allowed to leave!' He really couldn't help himself today as he chuckled again and closed the distance between himself and his two Massassi guards posted in front of the door. They saw their lord approach and immediately fell to the floor in obedience and gave their praises in their ancient dialect. Kun waved his hands in a "rise" motion and turned towards the gathered senators who all smiled their fake smiles and bowed their heads towards the man who had orchestrated a slaughter that the whole galaxy got to watch.
"Forgive me senators, but Senator Organa was not permitted to leave his repulsorpod for security reasons." The dark lord explained and saw many senators begin to nod in understanding and acknowledgment. "I will go talk to him and make sure our loyal son of the Empire is safe and willing to meet with you all." Kun informed the crowd and ordered his Massassi to let no one enter the room after him; in the Massassi language of course.
He entered the door as it slid open and revealed Bail sitting down in his repulsorpod. To Kun he seemed to not have moved at all, and he was surrounded by the other Alderaanian delegates; who were trying desperately to get him to talk. "Forgive me congressmen, but I must speak with your senator….in private." Exar addressed them and they all looked to him in mixed reactions of shock, anger, and; well disgust. He smirked at them in return.
"It's okay….please leave us to talk." Came a feeble sounding voice. Much to even Kuns surprise it belonged to Bail Organa himself. His voice sounded dry with disuse and obviously sad. His men now thoroughly shocked that he had even talked; all bowed their respect and quickly left the room. Doing all they could to avoid rubbing shoulders with Kun as they passed him. He waited for them to leave and listened for when the door slid closed again, and then closed in on Bail.
The man sat with a balled fist up to his mouth that was placed supportively on his chairs armrest. His brown eyes seemed to be staring off into the empty distance, and looked horrified. Exar shook his head with a smirk on his face. 'Oh how the mighty have fallen. Well the not so mighty, but still.' Kun thought with almost a snicker escaping him.
"Did you plan on being here? Or did you merely come as a means to utterly destroying me? Or perhaps, did the Emperor plan this whole thing himself?" Bail asked in a slightly muffled voice as his hand blocked his mouth.
Kun leaned against the wall and crossed hi9s arms in what he hoped displayed his utter delight in the scene before him. "Well it was in all honesty a mix of all three ideas really." Kun said with a shrug. "I had seen a chance to reveal myself and destroy any hope, any dreams that you had of beginning any ideological crusade against the Empire." The dark lord gleefully explained.
"You see Organa, this isn't about you; not entirely at least. You are indeed a piece of the puzzle, and an important piece on the board." Kun pushed himself off the wall and began pacing in front of the senator. He leaned down closer to Bail, "Did you honestly think that you could get away with alerting your pathetic rebel friends once off Alderaan?" The dark lord asked in a whisper that suddenly seemed more threatening then Bail expected.
"No Kun. I could not contact those poor souls that YOU condemned to death!" The senator retorted icily.
Kun stood to his full height again and chuckled. "Ah, Organa, Organa. Let's not play any games here. Whether or not you want to admit it you are just as responsible for the deaths of those men and woman on Dubrava as I and Lord Vader are." He informed as he continued pacing. "Let us; for a moment, say that you went to some rebel group after this whole thing." Kun said in a hypothetical manner that made Bail glare at him in confusion. "Let us say that you went before their now chaotic leadership and told them the exact reasons why you aided in the Dubrava attack. What would you go tell them Organa? 'Oh well it was to save my daughter I tell you!'" Kun mocked him in a almost whiny voice.
"Do you honestly believe that they would forgive you for sacrificing thousands of men and women for your single daughter? Or hell even your one planet?" He asked with a renewed grin on his face. "You are on no moral high ground today senator. You sacrificed thousand to save but one! One person that you alone are biased towards. Face it, you've burned all your bridges this day with a little help from me of course."
Exar uncaringly sat down besides Bail. The once proud and moral Organa now staring blankly at the floor at Kuns words. "Ah well. You know you're actually better off now right?" Exar asked with mirth.
Bail rolled his eyes like an annoyed teenager. "Really, and how do you think so?" He asked in a very much annoyed voice.
"Easy! Where once you were but a senator of Alderaan suspected of treason and a target of public attack from loyalists. Now you are a son of the Empire! A man that sacrificed years of his life to root out and aid in the destruction of dissenters from across the galaxy!" The dark lord explained in glee, and a smile planted on his face. Bail rubbed both his eyes in an obvious sign of agitation and weariness. "Yes I suppose I should thank you for making me but a poster boy for an Empire I've hated since day one of its inception!" He responded with tired venom.
The dark lord nodded. "Precisely!" he said with a laugh. "Now senator we are not done playing the game!" The senator looked at him in disgust. "You see I still have some use of you, and I need a poster boy for the moment." Bail shook his head once again in disgust.
"What makes you think I'll play your damnable game anymore you sick monster?" Bail asked in a scathing and venomous tone.
The dark lord placed an inquisitive finger to his mouth and made a "hmm," noise.
"Ah yes! Because I still have your daughter in the sights of my apprentice and now because of that little stunt on Alderaan, I have imperials practically dancing all over your homeworld!" He again stood up and leaned in towards the senator. "You see bail you love this girl so much that you are willing to do whatever you can to keep her safe. It is the inherent weakness of 'loving' someone such as a child. I however, can do things, and have things done to her that would make your skin crawl with sickness." His grey eyes grew more menacing. "I can tell her that her real daddy is responsible for killing millions, and that you lied to her all her life! That you aided me in killing thousands of people she obviously thinks are the good guys like you. I will break her in every and all ways possible Organa, and I will make you stand helplessly by and watch for the rest of your days!" He growled out through almost gritted teeth. Causing Bail to lean back into his chair with a horror stricken look more in his eyes than upon his face.
"Now senator," the dark lord began again with a nod of his head while saying 'senator.'
"You WILL, play the part of imperial loyalist, of lackey, of poster boy, and whatever else I command of you. You will meet with your allies in the senate and they will ask you why you did it and you will tell them that you spared them for their petty friendships, and that you were never who you said you were! You will smile and wave at the crowds and the throngs of imperial citizens who now love and adore you! You will even lie to 'your,' own daughter and you will make her believe it, or I will break you, and her. I do not suggest you test my resolve, senator. I will not be played for a fool!" He was now almost nose to nose with the Alderaanian senator. "Are we clear…..senator?" He darkly asked in almost a whisper.
Bail closed his eyes and ever so slightly shook his head. "How did this come to happen?' He of course knew how, but couldn't believe where he was right now. A mere pawn of a madman, an imperial, Sith madman to be exact.
"Yes, lord Kun. I understand you crystal clear." He meekly responded and watched as Kuns smile came back.
"Good, excellent! Now let us go entertain your new admirers within the senate!" The dark lord ordered, not asked, and Bail obediently rose form his seat and passed Kun quickly making for the door.
When it slid open the Massassi gave him another glare but stepped aside at the sight of their master. He looked at the gathered senators who all grew quiet at his entrance, and showed them all his best political smiles which reeked of falseness.
"All I have left is Leia…I mustn't lose her too.' With that thought in mind he began shaking hands with some of the worst imperial cronies of the senate showing them his own talents at political falseness and civility, and knew that tonight was going to be a long one indeed.
(Alderaan, Aldera Palace)
The shuttle had come and gone for some time now, and Viathan now had to admit that he felt utterly exhausted from earlier in the day. His wounds sustained during the Aldera skirmish had begun to burn and ache at a constant now from all the incurred stress of the day, and Viathan had given up on counting the scratches and bruises that now littered his torso, upper arms, legs, and especially his bruised, and thoroughly raw back.
'Okay I am most definitely never doing that again!' Viathan thought as he scrutinized his completely red back from his fresher's mirror. He knew he had brought this about himself; what with his little leap stunt that well enough could have killed him.
He shook his head in complete annoyance with himself and began re-wrapping his wounds, and dressing in a new pair of dark robes; his last being too ripped, and withered to be "saved." He had just finished with a much needed shower and now focused on the tasks that lay before him. He knew that he had to contact his master personally, and insure that the rebel prisoners had reached Alderaanian authorities without issue. On top of that Viathan had his first Imperial reports to file. Not only that but he had "paperwork," that needed tending to from the Alderaanians. Seeing as he was now officially in total command of Alderaan. At least only for the time being.
Sighing in frustration, and tiredness Viathan finished clasping his belt around his robed waist and exited his fresher. His quarters were rather large and unnecessarily ornate with the crisp and proper style of the Alderaanian royalty. It reminded him ever so slightly of the Imperial palace of Coruscant, but less…drenched in darkness.
He closed the distance between himself and his rooms entrance door which slid open and led him into one of the many corridors of the Aldera palace. He had to pass to silent but respectful Massassi of his masters who guarded his room, and he made an effort to nod towards them; to which they bowed deeply.
The hall was deathly quiet and even the Massassi made not a peep. Every step from his dark boots made a thundering echo through the entire halls length. The windows of the palace greeted Viathan with a pleasant darkness falling upon Aldera as its single satellite dimly lit upon the palace and Aldera City as well. Stars shown bright and stardestroyers flirted with the world as they danced across the atmosphere and let all Alderaanians know that the Empire had won this day, and were not leaving any time soon.
Viathan let but the slightest smirk reveal itself and quickly continued on with the tasks before him. Along his way Viathan encountered palace guardsmen that stood at specified positions and gave him looks that Viathan believed to either be fear or slight respect laced with the anger of a man who realized you had done terrible things, and could not even hope to stop you. Towards them Viathan would bow his now cloaked head, and felt their reactions through the force. It was all the same; it was fear.
Despite those palace guards Viathan also passed several Stormtroopers lined along the same corridors, and they all tensed when in his presence. The several Massassi he passed bowed deeply in respect towards their lords apprentice, and would stiffen even more than the troopers had afterwards.
'It would seem I made an impression somehow.' Viathan hadn't thought information had really gotten to the level in which everyone would know it was he in Crevasse; leading the push forward. Then again he knew that many imperial officers gossiped even though it was deemed unacceptable by Imperial protocol. That, and Viathan wasn't fully confident that all the Imperial com chatter was encrypted thoroughly, and the rebels may have very well leaked imperial chatter to the wider population in order to desperately garner support, and obviously it hadn't worked in the slightest.
He soon reached his masters quarters in the palace and quickly keyed in his masters personal com frequency and allowed the transmission to be accepted. Which took a moment before the holoimage of his master appeared. Viathan noticed a rather cockier than usual smirk upon his masters face, and thought he heard chatter in the distance; he thought for a moment of asking his master what the noise was, but saw better to drop to one knee and robotically recite, "Greetings, my master." Viathan bowed his head deeply and didn't look up to see his masters reaction to his respectful motion, and did not see his masters smirk broaden to a grin.
"Ah yes the great 'pacifier' of Alderaan honors me with his call!" His master said with mirth, but Viathan scowled; still looking to the floor. 'The pacifier?'
"Forgive me master, but I do not know what you mean. I did not wish to anger you with my call, my lord." Viathan responded and bowed his head even lower almost as if he were about to receive a barrage of anger, and verbal beatings.
Exar chuckled deeply. "I did not mean to infer anger my apprentice. It was indeed a praise my boy! Word has reached here to Coruscant and even to the Outer Rim that an uprising on Alderaan has been crushed by a new Imperial player on the scene." The dark lord said with what Viathan believed to be…'pride?'
"The imperial networks are calling you the 'pacifier,' and the whole of the Empire is eating this up!" The Sith lord informed the teen boy with another chuckle.
"After all Viathan, the galaxy has been dealt with several awe inspiring blows today. The Moffs being nullified of their offices and powers. The annihilation of thousands of rebels and their leaders from across the galaxy! And now the galaxy hears of an upstart on Alderaan of all places; crushing a general uprising that many believed to be the heralding of a 'true,' rebellion against the Empire!" The dark lord devolved into all out laughter and took a moment to calm himself from his dark indulgence.
Viathan now relaxed and let a small smile cross his face. 'All in your name….my master.' He thought as he finally felt needed, and useful to his lord. He could not even bear the thought of failing him.
"I seek only to serve you my master. The rebels of this world surrendered after they realized that senator Organa was in fact an…Imperial loyalist." Viathan said with a pause allowing his master to understand that he knew Bail was not what Kun made him out to be.
The dark lord grinned again with a snicker. "Oh indeed! It was quite the exposure to the galaxy abroad, I'm sure." The dark lord said again filled with mirth and dark joy.
"Nonetheless Viathan," Kun interrupted himself. "I do congratulate your efforts in 'pacifying,' those rebel scum. Know that I will insure you are greatly rewarded for your efforts, my apprentice." Now with a smile the dark lord informed his budding apprentice.
Viathan looked upon his master finally, and let his prideful smile be seen and he bowed his head again in gratitude.
"Thank you, my master." Kun nodded to him in turn, and then seemingly noticed something off to the distance on his end of the transmission.
"Ah, apprentice I must go. The Emperor is throwing together an Imperial gala or sorts in the Palace, and I am a VIP." He informed Viathan. "I will require a full report of your Alderaanian exploits be sent to me as soon as possible, and I will contact you tomorrow; standard time, and inform you of the next steps that need be taken." The dark lord ordered and Viathan quickly rose to a stand to follow with another deep standing-bow. "Of course my master. I anxiously await further orders." To that Kun nodded with a smirk, and without another word ended the communication.
Viathan stood alone for a moment as he basked in his masters praises. His previous master knew only anger, hatred, and retribution. Rarely did he ever praise Viathan, or "Valek" as he once called himself. His master once praised him when he suffered….an indignity at the hands of one of his masters trainers who had an unorthodox liking with the boy at no more than seven years of age. The Emperor had said, "You have suffered something that none walk away from unscarred. Today you have learned that suffering, pain, and humiliation are but weakness that we alone are responsible for. It is your, and my duty to eradicate weakness at all levels of the mind and body, and even of society. Know that in time you will look back on this hour and know that you are the better for what has been done, and you will know I let it happen to empower you, my young charge."
Viathan grimaced at the memory. He had no wish to ever remember what he saw, felt, even smelt that afternoon. It crawled up his spine and made him feel an anger, and a hate he did not wish to ever release.
He had to say though, Palpatine had been right about one thing. 'I am indeed the stronger for it. Now I know that you are, and always have been a nothing! I will see you dead and broken old man, and I will praise the force, and any gods I can for your destruction! I will dance upon your corpse and very grave! For it is as you said master. Weakness must be eradicated at all levels. And you are my weakness.'
He stood looking at nothing as his mind was elsewhere, and he did not move for a time. His rage passed, and his emptiness receded into the darkness of his heart. Without even a thought he sat at his masters desk and began the task of filing reports, and signing documents for protocols sake. Viathan felt in this moment a great hunger. A hunger for happiness; though he would never speak of it to anyone; not even his master. For he knew that his life, his happiness did not matter in the least.
'All in your name my master. All for your reign.'
Was all he could think of, and without so much as another thought went about his desk work.