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The Journey into Darkness, an Acolyte's Journal

STAR WARS: The Old Republic > English > Community Content > Fan Fiction
The Journey into Darkness, an Acolyte's Journal

RulithBarakis's Avatar

01.19.2012 , 05:54 PM | #1
This is something I recently thought of. I've been at a loss for what to write about for quite a while, here on the forums, and otherwise. Then, I thought- what would it be like to see things from the perspective of a Sith Acolyte who does not believe in what he should stand for? What I came up with was this. The first entry is a simple introduction, so from now on the entries should be quite a bit longer.

I hope you enjoy the story.


The Journey into Darkness, an Acolyte's Journal


Entry #1

Who am I?

"They say that it's a Jedi thing. Wanting to protect the weak, the innocent. They say that the Dark Side will cleanse you of those 'baser' emotions, lead you to a life of power, eternal victory. Lately, it just seems like the sacrifices are too much. Today, the Masters... they made us torture innocent civilians. Murder them in cold blood after enduring their screams for hours on end. They said that it was to practice our powers of persuasion. I think they just enjoy the blood.

Why have I decided to start writing these things down? I don't know. Maybe it's my conscience toying with me, wanting me to be able to stare down at the things I've done that are too horrible to believe. I'm starting to believe that the Jedi may have some things right, at least. And now look at what I'm thinking! My very beliefs have been shaken in the course of a single afternoon. The strangest thing is, is that I'm not so sure that's a bad thing. Maybe I'll make a break for it one day.

One day, maybe. Or maybe I'll stay here and be consumed by utter darkness. Would that really be so terrible? I can forget all the bad things in the galaxy and just let myself become a true Sith. Revel in power. Enjoy the company of rage and hatred as if they are my best friends. Who am I to say just what Code is the right one, though? I've never once even heard the Jedi Code, but I can easily see the flaws within the Sith's. Maybe the Jedi have failings as well? That's a question I'll probably never know the answer to, I suppose.

Who am I really? I often ponder this question, when I am alone, as I lay in bed at night. I'm no Jedi, I know that much. While I don't truly believe in the Sith themselves, the Empire actually stands for something. If I were ever to escape my life as it is now, an Acolyte studying the ways of the Dark Side on Korriban, I wouldn't go running to the Republic. I would try and find a way to help the Empire from wherever it is I am hiding. But of course, I don't believe that I'll ever work up the willpower to leave. I am what I am, for the moment.

Who am I? I hate the Republic. I spit upon the Jedi Order. I can barely stand what happens here at the Academy on a daily basis. But I am also powerful in the Force. That, I know more than anything. I am not called to the Light Side. I may or may not be called to the Dark Side, to the Sith. The journey inbetween is too lonely for me to undertake. I am a coward, it seems. But that cowardice is part of what makes me who I am, along with the disgust, the anger, the pain. My love for the Empire and all that it stands for.

Who am I?

That is a question that I cannot yet answer."

--- Naven Korr

RulithBarakis's Avatar

01.19.2012 , 06:35 PM | #2
Entry #2

My Philosophy

"I don't get how they can stand it. The Masters have bombarded us with evil after evil, constantly dragging us farther into darkness, to the Dark Side. Torture, endure. Scheme, murder. The cycles are ever continuing, it seems. Is my life already planned for me? Am I nothing but a passenger on a figurative transport? It seems like it, these days. What else am I to think?

The other Acolytes grow to enjoy these evils more and more everyday. It's sickening. And yet, I can understand the allure of letting oneself go, letting your emotions simply course through you. The power doing something such as that can grant you is almost too good to be true. But they never tell you about the consequences. I've seen it in the eyes of the other once-resilient. Slowly, unerringly, all of us are losing our humanity to this insanity.

It seems that my fellow students are willing passengers along for the ride. If I just let myself go, could I enjoy it too? Enjoy inflicting such suffering as I've seen upon our victims? Yes, I believe that I could. And that's exactly why I can't let who I am disappear forever. Oh, they'll try to beat me into the gravel, break down my defenses. But I must stand resolute. I will sustain my training, and rise through the ranks, no matter how much time it takes me in my own manner.

If I die, I'll die knowing that I stayed true to myself throughout it all. Is that a thing to be proud of? I guess I won't know until death comes to claim me, but I dearly hope so, because for now, I have nothing else to believe in.

Meditation helps sometimes. When I simply let the Force flow through me, it's easier to defend myself against the great many injustices that are commited everyday in the Academy. My mind becomes clear, and it feels like, just for a moment, I don't have to worry about anything or anyone. That, of course, can change once the meditation is shattered by a stray thought, such as the fact that at, any moment, another Acolyte may stab me in the back.

I have no allies here, that much is certain. No Masters sympathize with me; they would kill me where I stood for my weakness if ever they even glanced at this journal of mine. No Acolytes share my thoughts, my own code. I am utterly alone, adrift in a sea of black waters. Maybe there seems like I may see a flash of light in the distance from time to time, but I know it is always nothing but my imagination. There is no hope for me now. All I can do is stay the course and weather the horrors all about.

I've heard it said that the most beautiful beings in the universe are the Diathim, tall, glowing figures with wings that seem to sparkle beneath the light of a star. Their features can never be made out beyond the incredible light given off by them. They do not even eat; they sustain themselves with some other source that no one has ever seen, apparently.

I sometimes feel like I myself glow with an intense light, though not one of beauty, like the Diathim. I feel as if I emit a glow the color of blood. When I look in the mirror, I cannot see myself clearly behind the veil. I have done terrible things already, and I am not yet even seventeen years of age. I am revolted by myself. Perhaps that is yet another piece of the puzzle, though. All I can do is hold on to what I believe, what I truly wish, to be myself.

I have a personal philosophy, you know. 'Be steadfast in the midst of shadows.' That is a quote from an unnamed Jedi. It was written in the personal records of some ancient Sith who moments later slew the very Jedi who spoke the words. But they seemed to pop out to me, in a way. Perhaps it is I they were meant for, all these years later? The Force can work in mysterious ways, from all that I've seen, from all that I've been taught. Maybe one day I can escape from this sea of darkness.

Then again, perhaps not, and perhaps this is simply my imagination showing me things I want to believe."

--- Naven Korr

RulithBarakis's Avatar

01.20.2012 , 11:02 PM | #3
Entry #3

The Nightmares

"They started about a week ago today. I've been restless, unable to sleep, to even shut my eyes. Are things supposed to be this way, I wonder? Are these part of some sort of eternal punishment that will continue throughout my life and on after I die? They are nightmares. Horrible, mind-numbing, terror-invoking nightmares that haunt me day in and day out.

The worst of them is when the faces appear. The faces of the innocents slaughtered here in the Academy, frozen in terror, in pain, in all their heart-wrenching suffering. Life is becoming harder and harder to live. My very soul is being drawn far too thin. Is this what it feels like to lose oneself? Is this what the other Acolytes felt as they slowly fell into the all-consuming fire of the Dark Side? I certainly hope not, for that would mean my fight to keep my humanity is already lost.

I can barely get through the day now. I'm losing my foothold in what I know to be real, what I know to be true. Soon, I fear I will finally falter, and that the shadows will finally catch up to me. Such negative thinking can only lead to a painful reality, I know, but I cannot help it. What can one do when he is assaulted on all sides by what seems to be evil itself incarnate? Questions upon questions, and never an answer, it seems.

I can no longer even find peace in meditation. As soon as I shut my eyes, I am assaulted by the horror of my dreams. I walk a precarious line, and I have begun to lean too far towards the side I wish not to fall in. When I kill for the Masters, I no longer feel remorse. When I duel, I feel my anger surging, my hatred fueling me. Hatred aimed mostly at my weak, pathetic self. And then, once the heat of the moment subsides, I realize I let myself go, and I am ashamed.

The other Acolytes that arrived with me are already completely lost to what once seem disgusting and evil. They plot, they hate, they snap at scraps of power, of knowledge, like stray dogs that have been starving for months snap at the smallest crumb of food. The morbidly odd peak of the situation is that I have begun to hunger for what the others hunger for. The strength to obliterate everything in my path. The rage strong enough to tear down a city. I hate myself for it, and yet...

But I digress. Even I myself admitted that I may not be able to hold out against the seduction of the Dark Side forever. With nothing to hold onto, no purchase with which I can push backwards, I have nowhere to go but down, into a chasm so deep and so wide that I will never be able to find my way out again. It is the nature of things, I am starting to believe, for one to follow those around him in everything they do. I only now realize this, and I only now realize the futility of my resistance with no one else fighting back against the tide.

I am truly, utterly, alone.

So what can I do but hold out as long as possible? What can I do but resist the nature of all intelligent beings? I have begun to lose my precarious footing in this flood of darkness. Soon, I will simply be swept away.

My dreams may be nightmares. They may haunt me wherever I go, torment my already-tormented heart. But they're also all that keeps me from falling into a reality much worse than they are. So I hold fast to them. I hold fast to my fading beliefs. I hold on. For what else can you do when your nightmares are all that protect you from a fate worse than death?

Next week, the new batch of Acolytes arrive. I can only hope I'll have fallen by then, so that I do not have to watch the fall of others once more."

--- Naven Korr

RulithBarakis's Avatar

01.20.2012 , 11:46 PM | #4
Entry #4

The Recluse

"It's a new one, I suppose. But the new Acolytes have been referring to me as 'the Recluse.' Without even realizing it, while I have been wallowing in self-pity, I have risen to be one of the most powerful Acolytes at the Academy. How has this occurred? I do not know. But I feel as if, now that my independence has been recognized and registered by my own self, I have begun to throw myself whole-heartedly into my studies. If I am to be a Sith, I will be the best at what I am.

Ambition... it is a good thing to have. For me, I simply want the power to break free of the mold. I'm probably simply making excuses for myself, but at least I still have that pathetic creature comfort. And is it truly wrong for me to cling to such things? I've been a Sith Acolyte for about six to seven months now. I did not start this journal until a few weeks ago, but after beginning to write... I realize I have begun to come to terms with what I am becoming.

The hateful eyes of envious Acolytes follow me wherever I go. I have, unconsciously, begun to smile back. Yes, I said smile. But not the, 'Why, hello there!' sort. I mean the mocking sort, where one believes he is better than another and smiles to show it. Have I truly become so petty? Among the new Acolytes, there seems to be only one actually attempting to resist the call of power. But while she is now alone, as I was one, she seems to be even more resilient than I was. It has only been a few days, but already I can see it.

She talks back to the Masters, is punished, torturously, on a daily basis, and is shunned by all of the other Acolytes. Openly, I show the same disdain for her as others. And yet, simply watching her resist seems to have halted my own descent. My head has started to clear. The nightmares have faded away. It may, as I truly wish to believe, have to do with my rise in power. But perhaps it is because, now that I am not the only one fighting against the tide, my will to hold onto my humanity has returned.

I continue to act as the reclusive one, never speaking to anyone, always watching from a distance, surveying my potential rivals, gathering information, as I realized I have been doing ever since I began this journal, unaware, subconsciously. But I know that, if I did not approach her soon, this lone, like-minded Acolyte would fall just as I have fallen so far. So I am waiting for the right moment.

I can already tell that the open hatred shown to her by the other Acolytes all around has begun to ground away her mental defenses. If she has no allies, she will simply be murdered in her sleep, as so many weak Acolytes are in their first week or so of training. But if she were to have someone like myself as an ally, 'the recluse himself', then no one would dare touch her. For a while, anyways. I need the support, both physically and metaphysically.

I do not know how to speak to her without drawing suspicion, though. There are a number of ways I can approach her, but all involve being seen by other Acolytes, something I want to avoid until she knows I am of kindred spirit. There is only one thing I can think of that could work; I must break curfew and approach her at her quarters. If I am caught, I will be punished for breaking the almighty, untouchable curfew. But I will not be slain, for I am too powerful a potential asset, and no one will know the reason for which I am about at night.

I must show her she is not alone in her fight against the evil here at the Academy, and I must show her how to properly fight against it. I don't know why I so strongly feel the need to aid her. Perhaps it is my humanity itself, manifesting in my heart and guiding me to a way out of the darkness of the Academy. Perhaps the Dark Side is simply trying to get me to drag another resistant Acolyte down to its crushing, suffocating hold. Or perhaps I have finally found a light out on that sea of stormy waters. I will not know until I can safely approach the girl.

A recluse, am I? I shall see about changing that."

--- Naven Korr

RulithBarakis's Avatar

01.21.2012 , 12:42 PM | #5
Entry #5

A Steadfast Ally

"It was a success. Despite thinking that I would be discovered, which caused me to make some rookie mistakes, I managed to sneak out at night and speak to the Acolyte. She may still be skeptical, but the fact that I risked severe punishment by breaking curfew to try and convince her that I am an ally, seems to have made it a bit easier for her to believe me. But I suppose that I should put a face to who it is I'm speaking of, now that I've actually met her.

The Acolyte's name is Keyra Nel. She's about a couple of inches shorter than I am, with a bit of a frailer build. She has long, brown curly hair, falling down to her waist. Her eyes are a darker shade of green. Why do I tell you these things? I tell you, because there's something about her that's different. I have finally found someone of a like mind. Someone else who also stands against the darkness. Who resists the temptation of the Dark Side. I can actually see a speck of light in the distance.

But meeting her has also evoked a whole host of odd emotions I've never felt before. I don't know why, but I had a hard time speaking to her. Is that a weakness, I wonder? Have I invoked the wrath of the Dark Side? Can I no longer even speak of resisting its call without difficulty of some sort? I am beginning to think I have truly lost it. Could things get any stranger? I suppose that it's possible, because while speaking to her, I did something I haven't done in a very long time.

I smiled.

And I don't mean the kind of smile I described before, in a previous entry, the arrogant, 'I'm better than you' one. No, I mean a genuine smile. I don't know why. I don't understand how. I just know that it happened. And I am glad that it did. Having been snatched away by the Sith as a small child, and forced into slavery for a while before they recognized my affinity for the Force, I have never really smiled like that. Maybe before I was taken, yes, but other than that...

And it did feel good to smile. I'm starting to think that I really, truly have found my way out of this disgusting life. For now, I am stuck here, in the Academy. But if both me and Keyra can make it through the training and off planet, then we can make our escape from the Empire. Hopefully, we'll be able to find others like us and take them along for the ride. But look at me, I'm speaking way ahead of myself. I do not even know if we'll both be able to survive our training here. I will focus all of my being into Academy life now.

My nightmares are completely gone. While they lasted only a short while, I can honestly say I'm glad they were here. Without something to grasp at, I would have fallen before someone else like me arrived. Now, my soul has been strengthened, and I have escaped the terrible, mighty pull of the Dark Side. For now, anyways. But is anyone ever truly free of the whispers and promises of glory? Of power? Of strength unmatched? For now, I must only do what I can, because there is nothing else that may be done. For now, I am truly free of the grasp of darkness.

Things will be different from now on. I can sense it. Feel it. A storm is coming, and I know only that whatever it is, I must be ready. But I can tell that others feel its approach as well. It will affect all of us, not just Keyra and I. All of the Acolytes, all of the Masters. I am unsure whether or not the outcome of this approaching darkness will be a good one or a bad one. But I will be careful, and bide my time. The training I have gone through up until now will help with that.

Watching and waiting is a thing I'm good at by now. And now I have a steadfast ally whom I can rely upon to aid me in my struggles.

Perhaps the Academy has done something good for me, after all."

--- Naven Korr

AssassinNick's Avatar

01.21.2012 , 02:35 PM | #6
holy crap this is freakin good

RulithBarakis's Avatar

01.21.2012 , 09:03 PM | #7
@AssassinNick: Thanks! I'm glad that you're enjoying it. Make sure to keep reading as it continues!

RulithBarakis's Avatar

01.21.2012 , 11:23 PM | #8
Entry #6

A Tournament and a Strange Disease

"So, you know that 'storm' I've felt coming? I finally found out what it is. A tournament- one of dueling- that will be taking place to decide upon the best of the Acolytes here. I thought that it was going to be some sort of major event, but I thought it would have something to do with a Jedi or Republic attack. I didn't think it was going to be a tournament where all of us would be forced to duke it out and decide the greatest of the great here in the Academy.

There are a lot of things that could happen during something like this. An accidental death here or there wouldn't be much of a big deal, I know. I'll have to be watching very carefully when the event finally comes around, because if I'm not, I'll most likely be murdered as I walk through the hallways. I'm not really sure how I'll stack up against the other Acolytes. Dueling isn't really my forte, though I won't say that I'm bad at it. I've always been better at using the Force than I have at using a training blade. It's my specialization, you might say.

They announced it earlier today, in the mess hall, when we were all eating our half-rotted mystery lunch. They didn't deign to even bother feeding us real food. They think we can sustain ourselves with the Dark Side. But that's not going to be happening any time soon. No Acolyte can survive without some nourishment. I suppose that's why the Masters actually feed us. But back to the topic, now. My survival is my own business. Though I'll be sure to warn you beforehand if I think I'm about to starve to death.

So we were told what was going to happen. In two months time, a tournament will be held, and the five at the top in the end will all graduate from the Academy early. That's right. This is my chance to escape the overwhelming tide of darkness. For now, I've got to focus on helping Keyra become powerful enough to stand and fight her way into the top five as well. While she is powerful in the Force, she isn't as powerful as I and some of the others are.

I'm not yet sure just what her specialzation is. She's good with a training blade as well as strong in the Force. I'm not sure what to do with that; if it were under different circumstances, I'd just let her grow to her full power in her own time. I certainly haven't reached my full potential yet, and with any luck, I'll be free from the darkness before I break and succumb to the whispers of power. So what will I be doing? Training. And helping Keyra. And preparing myself mentally for what is to come.

I guess things are going to get bad. But I feel as if the tournament is the least of my worries at the moment, strangely enough. Allow me to explain- those odd emotions that I've been having lately, when I'm speaking to Keyra? They're getting stronger every day. I have no idea what's happening. I have no idea what to do. Have I contracted some sort of disease? Has the Dark Side itself begun to move against me? I'm going to try researching it the next time I get the chance.

For convience sake, and for the ease of looking back, I'm going to tell you what it is that's occurring. When I speak to her, I smile, as I've told you. My cheeks get warm and turn red. My tongue seems to weigh heavily in my mouth. I can barely speak. My wits seem to be dulled. I find myself hanging on her every word. I've even laughed- and what a strange moment that was! You want to know what happened when I laughed, though? She did too. Have I given her my disease?

I swear, if we die from some sort of stupid sickness before we even have the chance for a shot at escape from the Academy, I'm going to... Well, I won't be able to do anything. But if I could, I would bring myself back to life just so I could kill myself again.

Everything is getting brighter. That speck of light in the distance? It's no longer just a speck. Things finally seem to be on the upside. I certainly am glad for that! Anyways, that about wraps things up for this entry. I'll be sure to keep you posted as the tournament approaches. I will escape from this dark ocean, and I will be free to do what i want when I do so. No exceptions.

And I'll be sure to find out what this bizarre sickness is!"

--- Naven Korr

Aazendi's Avatar

01.23.2012 , 04:23 AM | #9
Very nice exploration of the more "human" emotions that are often ignored in the sith they are human, after all.

RulithBarakis's Avatar

01.25.2012 , 09:41 AM | #10
@Aazendi: Thanks for the comment, and I'm glad that you enjoy it! I've always thought that the Sith were considered as if they at times weren't even intelligent beings, instead completely controlled by their hatred and anger. I've been wanting to explore the mind of an Acolyte resisting that call for a while now.

Entry #7

What is this... Emotion?

"This is strange. I've done my research. I've checked the library. And yet, I've discovered no sickness of any kind that can explain what's happening to me when I'm around Keyra. I'm not sure what else to check, actually, and it's beginning to wear on my mind. Is it some new disease? Is it lethal? I really wish that I knew the answers, but alas, I do not, and so I am left questioning myself yet again.

Maybe, if I die, it'll be easier for me. I mean, I don't exactly enjoy the Academy life. If I were to die before I fell to the Dark Side, completely and utterly, then I'll be able to die knowing that I managed to keep my humanity intact. But I don't feel like I'm going to die. And I seriously doubt it. Perhaps this is not a sickess of any kind? Maybe it's my mind playing tricks on me. Or maybe it's something more simple. Is it some sort of emotion? Now that I think about it, the effects of it on me does fit more with an emotion than a disease.

But it is no emotion I've ever encountered before. It isn't anger. It isn't spite. It certainly isn't hatred. I guess I'll have to do a bit more research before I really understand what's going on with me. But I certainly hope I get the chance before the tournament. It's coming up two weeks from now, but they've already started preparing the whole Academy for it. The Lower Levels, where the Library is located, have been blocked off for some reason, though a several days ago, there was some sort of transport that landed at the Academy's landing pad.

Things are happening at an alarming rate now. I have to keep training. I have to keep getting stronger. This emotion? I'll either have to forget about it for now, or figure it out on my own. Maybe I should ask Keyra about it? I'm not so sure about that. She'd think it is a weakness. She'd think I won't be able to keep up if we ever get the chance to escape from the Academy. I'll keep it a secret for now and wonder on my own. And at any rate, I've got more important things to worry about for now.

The first round of Tournament matches has been decided. I've discovered who it is I'll be facing, and I can say easily that it will not be an easily-won match. My opponent's name is Malvier Dieldras, a Devaronian who's skill with the blade rivals even that of our own Blademaster. My obvious advantage is, without any observation as of yet, my skill with the Force. Usually, to become the best in one area, you would sacrifice strength in another. But before I can be certain, I'll have to start watching Malvier. I get the feeling that he won't mind showing off.

Keyra won't be having any trouble in her first duel. Her opponent is from the most recent batch of Acolytes, her own group, actually. Ever since I started helping her improve her skills, she has become quite formidable. Her power with the Force has increased exponentially, and her skill with those twin training blades of hers is incredible. She's one of those Acolytes that can excel at everything. But she's still pretending to be the helpless, pathetic weakling that everyone thinks she is. The other Acolytes already underestimate her.

I have focused most of my time on increasing my skill with the Ataru lightsaber form. As it is the form that most involves the Force, it is most suited to me. My acrobatics were already naturally pretty good, but now, after quite some time in training, they're incredible. If I can come out with some sort of surprise acrobatic attack in my first match, I think I can pull through, though if I cannot rely on my training blade, then I'll have to win with the Force. I'm strong, but I'm not willing to put anything to chance. I cannot afford to lose!

Anyways, I'm late for another training session with Keyra. We'll be focusing on dueling today, as she hasn't practiced with her training blades in a while, and I am up against the Academy's most skilled duelist. With any luck, I'll be able to keep reporting as I train, but my next entry may not come until the days I'll be resting up in preparation for the tournament. I'm off."

--- Naven Korr