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The Well of Undying


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Lunafox
09.15.2012 , 03:52 AM | #1
The Well of Undying
By: Lunafox
Notes and Disclaimers: This is my first fan fic posted to this forum. I hope you enjoy. Master Liatrix is my Jedi sentinel, and all other characters are gratefully borrowed from our lovely SWTOR universe. There maybe SPOILERY elements to those who have not yet participated in the JEDI KNIGHT storyline. Read at your own risk. Feed back is welcome. Enjoy!




“Rusk ol’ buddy! Got a minute or two for your favourite ship’s doctor?” Doc beamed, idly adjusting the platinite cufflinks of his formal suit.

“You’re our only ship’s doctor, sir.” Rusk set aside an antique carbine he’d been restoring, and stared at Doc. “What can I do for you?”

Doc’s brows knitted as he met Rusk’s intense stare. Speaking to Rusk made him painfully aware of what micro organisms must feel like when he studied them in the med lab. He mentally vowed to be more charming to them in the future.

“The Missus and I are taking off now. I’ve got my reunion back on Coruscant and she’s got her Jedi whatsamathingy on Vzer.” Doc clacked his tongue and shook his head. “Poor thing was heart broken she couldn’t join me, but you know how it is with Jedi and saving the galaxy, they just can’t say no.”

“Some of us feel the calling more than others sir.” Said Rusk.

Doc eyed Rusk, his brow lifting. Was that a veiled insult? No matter.

“Anyhow…I just wanted to ask you to keep an eye on things while we’re gone.” Said Doc.

“Of course sir. It’s my duty. Have you spoken to Lord Scourge?”

Doc cringed. “I usually try to avoid anyone who can choke the life outta me with a thought. The Missus is briefing him right now.” He tilted his head, half wondering what sort of damage Rusk’s horns could do, and if he’d ever used them in battle.

“Understood sir. Your return dates are still as originally posted?”

“Far as I know. If anything changes, I’ll be sure to let ya know.” Doc glanced back at the stairs leading down to the airlock.

“Yes sir.” Rusk’s eyes were intent, unblinking.

“Let’s do this again sometime.” Doc flashed a grin and slapped Rusk’s shoulder.

*****

Lord Scourge towered over the diminutive young Jedi, his arms folded. “I don’t think this is wise.”

Master Liatrix looked up at him, holding his gaze but a moment before averting her eyes. She turned away. “It’s not up for discussion Lord Scourge. This is something I have to do alone.”

“You’re hiding something. I can sense it. The Force tremours in you whenever we speak. I am Sith. I wouldn’t be where I am today, if I couldn’t spot deception. I won’t ask again. What are you keeping from me.”

Liatrix squared her shoulders and lifted her chin. “I can’t tell you. It’s…classified. I have to go. Doc’s waiting.”

She turned away from him. Before she could reach the middle of the cargo bay, Scourge snatched her wrist and pulled her to him. He could feel her heart hammering through her robes but a moment, before her well learned self control lulled it into a deceptive calm.

He stared into her ocean blue eyes, his nostril’s flaring. She mirrored his expression and said nothing. She didn’t flinch as his grip tightened about her birdlike wrist, threatening to break the tiny bones of her main saber hand. Her eyes flashed as crimson as his own, and then it was gone…they were blue again. He wasn’t startled, but the glimmer of the dark side was unexpected. He released her and backed away, his tongue sliding over his lower lip as he exhaled.

She rubbed at her wrist and watched him silently from the doorway. He tugged at his right chin tendril, his gaze dark. Her eyes were uncharacteristicly glossy.

Unshed tears from the pain he had inflicted? Or something else?


Master Liatrix tugged on her gloves, and swept out of the cargo bay, her black cape swishing behind her. She was as enigmatic as any Sith he’d ever met. More so.

She nearly collided with Doc. “Hey gorgeous, all set?” He drawled.

“Look at you, all dressed up. You look like a billion credits lover.”

“It’s a long flight to Coruscant, and I booked us a private suite.” He clacked his tongue and arched his eyebrows. “We’ll have to make up for all the time we miss while you’re on your mission.”

Master Liatrix giggled and took Doc’s arm. “And you, have some fun for me at the reunion, but not too much fun.”

Doc winked. “Don’t worry sweetheart, I’ll only have as much fun as legally allowed. I learned my lesson the last time when Kira, Scourge and Rusk refused to post bail.”

“You’re lucky T-7 likes you.” Master Liatrix playfully swatted Doc’s arm and laughed.

Scourge tilted his head to spy on the couple in the corridor. He scowled and crossed his arms, the knuckles of his saber hand cracking as his fist tightened. Master Liatrix was like two different people. For her husband she was sweet natured and playful…for him, she was like a word on the tip of one’s tongue—maddeningly elusive, irritating and capable of breeding unquenchable obsession.

“Damn you.” He hissed.

After four days of self imposed exile in the cargo bay, Scourge prowled the ship. He moved like a jaggalor, powerful, predatory and calculating. Rusk looked up from cleaning his weapon but said nothing to the Sith Lord pacing before him.

“Sergeant Rusk. I trust there have been no communications from Master Liatrix?”

“No sir. There are few regions on Vzer that will allow a signal to carry without interference.”

“It was imprudent of her to go alone.” Said Scourge.

“I echoed that sentiment, however the Master Jedi was adamant.” Rusk reassembled the weapon before him with a few clicks. Scourge was impressed. Remarkable for a non-Force user.

Kira emerged from the bridge, the rustle of her tawny robes announcing her.

“I told her she was mynock-dung crazy, going by herself. She didn’t seem to think there was any danger. Yeah, right.” Kira scoffed. “Gamorrean force sensitives? Not a good thing.”

“The Master Jedi is more than capable, given our past exploits.” Said Rusk.

Scourge’s eyes narrowed as he considered Kira’s revelation. “She confided the details to you?”

“No. I’m just nosy. And really good at slicing mission logs.” Kira’s lip curved up at the corner.

“Tell us what you’ve learned.” Scourge demanded.

“Not before you tell me a few things.” Kira looked between the two men.

“Like what.” Said Scourge.

“Like, who’s been using our communications array to piggyback messages to the Sith Empire.”

Scourge’s eyes widened, but he remained silent. Rusk sat up straighter in his seat, setting his weapon down with almost a sudden absent mindedness.

“I don’t appreciate dramatic pauses.” Scourge growled.

“So you’re denying that it’s you Scourge?” Kira set her hands on her hips, her cape splaying like a pair of wings behind her. Kira’s stance reminded Rusk of animals who would puff up, to seem more intimidating to their rivals.

“Of course I am. Not that I owe you any explanations.”

Rusk looked from one force user to the other. “For the record it wasn’t me either. Is it possible the ship’s security was breached at any time? Perhaps the communications relays were accessed from the exterior of the ship?”

“He’s right. There are avenues we need investigate, before we start pointing fingers at one another.” Said Scourge.
Frantic beeps and squeals rang out from the bridge.

“What is it T-7?” Said Kira. The droided whirred and bounced. “Imperial ships, three of them closing in.” Kira translated.

Scourge scowled. “Evasive manouvers.”

“On it.” Kira dashed to the bridge.

((To be continued…))

My debut novel ETERNITY AWAITS available now!

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Earthmama
09.15.2012 , 10:09 AM | #2
That's a great opener!! Looking forward to more!

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Lunafox
09.15.2012 , 06:54 PM | #3
Thanks so much! I'm very excited about it. I hope to have the next part up before the end of tomorrow. *crosses fingers*
My debut novel ETERNITY AWAITS available now!

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Morgani
09.15.2012 , 10:08 PM | #4
Wow, I really enjoyed that. Can't wait to see more. Thanks for sharing!
Be to her Virtues
very Kind.
Be to her Faults
a little Blind.

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kabeone
09.16.2012 , 01:31 AM | #5
Quote: Originally Posted by Lunafox View Post

“I don’t appreciate dramatic pauses.” Scourge growled.
haha. I love it when I have the opportunity to use that line in game.

Good stuff.

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iamthehoyden
09.16.2012 , 01:18 PM | #6
Oh I like this! Can't wait to see more.
aren't you a little short for a stormtrooper?
---------------
Fan Fiction: My Name is Solomon Crae The Man in the Box

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Lunafox
09.16.2012 , 10:50 PM | #7
Thanks so much for all the lovely encouragement. It means a lot. Here is part two. Gwanshoo and Liatrix are mine, everything else is borrowed from the Star Wars Universe with thanks. Enjoy!



The Well of Undying—Part 2 by Lunafox

“Two Fury class interceptors and a Harrower…” Kira murmured. Her already fair skin paled a few shades whiter. “We’ll never make it.”

“They’re toying with us. If they intended to kill us, they’d have done so by now.” Said Scourge. His voice was silken and even. Emotionless. Kira envied the Sith Lord’s calm. He twisted the iron ring adorning his right chin tendril, brows furrowing.

“Don’t know how the hell you can be so calm at a time like this.” Kira barked.

“And here I thought all you Jedi were virtually comatose from your teachings.” Scourge taunted.

A volley of fire from the Harrower’s turbo laser canons grazed the Defender, taking out shields. Rusk answered the attack with several well placed shots from the Defender’s twin turbo lasers. “Shields are down to five percent.”

“Four. Nope, make that three.” Kira corrected Rusk. The corvette lilted gracefully from side to side dodging several incoming blasts from the Furys. For a soldier typically situated in ground units, Rusk was more than a fair pilot.

Another blast jarred the ship hard enough to send T-7 screaming backwards off the bridge and into the guard rail, denting it. Sparks flickered from above his eyepiece. The sturdy droid twisted his dome to shake off the disorientation pummelling his circuitry. He whistled long and loud. The sound could be best described as a surprised yet relieved beep. T-7 had the equivalent of a minor bump on the head.

“T-7!” Kira called out. “I thought you were a goner, for sure.” Angry sparks leapt from the console burning her hand. “Ow! Well, there goes our hyper drive. Now we’re done.” Thin streaks of electricity lapped over the controls.

“They have homing missiles locked on us…they have tone.” Rusk said heavily. Several beads of milky perspiration dotted the Sergeant’s forehead.

The Harrower vomited a salvo of bombs and cannon fire. The Furys joined in spraying the Defender with laser bursts.

“Bring us about. Close the distance between us and that Harrower.” Scourge clipped.

“That’ll take us head on into the fire!” Said Kira. “We’ll be killed.”

Rusk turned the ship 180 degrees. Laser fire bounced off the hull.

“Have a little faith Jedi.” Scourge’s brow lifted smugly. “No need to convince yourself there is only the force just yet. Cut power to all systems.”

Kira and Rusk both turned to stare incredulously at Scourge. Only Kira spoke. “It’s official. You’ve lost your mind.”

“If you want to survive, do it.”

Kira winced and reluctantly flipped the row of switches before her, effectively killing power to every system including life support and attitude control, sending the corvette twisting downwards, nose first and then floating aimlessly like trash in an ocean.

“I sure hope you know what you’re doing.” Kira muttered.

The homing missiles wobbled and disengaged seconds before impact with the Defender. Having lost sensor adhesion the bombs veered and skittered away harmlessly.

Scourge folded his arms over his chest, savouring the temporary victory.

“Whew, close one. How did you know they’d do that.” Kira whispered in awe.

“I’m Sith.” Scourge rolled his hand by way of explanation. “Re-engage life-support. Now comes the challenge.”

The Harrower locked a tractor beam onto the Defender, the beam extracting the corvette from space, and drawing it into their hanger bay.

“When that hatch opens, leave no survivors. We’ll have only minutes to take control. We move as one unit, for the bridge. Understood?” Said Scourge.

“Understood sir.” Rusk cocked his rifle. “Victory or death!”

Kira pushed T-7 into a storage cubicle shutting the door loosely. “Be ready for anything.” She whispered through the vents. The droid beeped and whistled with a note of determination before falling silent. C2-N2, affectionately renamed ID-V8 by Master Liatrix, had self-deactivated in the scuffle.

“May the Force be with us.” Said Kira.

Scourge’s gloved fingers played over the pummel of his lightsaber. The landing ramp groaned to life as it extended. Several pairs of feet marched upwards…

*****

Master Liatrix paused to re-check her position in the jungles of Vzer. The trek from the chartered BT-7 she’d picked up on Coruscant, had been long, exhaustive and very wet. The journey was a far cry from the opulent warmth and extravagance she shared with Doc on the way to Coruscant. They’d danced. They’d dined on the galaxy’s finest delicacies and lavished many an hour of erotic attentions on one another ranging from the sensual to the violently stormy, leaving them thoroughly spent. Doc had told her, that he was lucky—being with her was like having two different women. Liatrix smirked. He had no idea.

Her sepia coloured hair clung to her head, heavy with rain. The dainty decorative hairchain she sported felt like a heavy coin pounding against her forehead as she moved. The sensor indicated the co-ordinates to the rendezvous site were just a few meters ahead of her.

As she neared the site, the circular shape of the smuggler captain’s Corellian Light Freighter poked through the wet foliage. Beyond the ship was a collection of small thatch huts—homes to the Gamorrean force sensitives.

“Master Jedi. I was starting to worry.” The captain, a young female Twi’lek, with skin as pale as a skull and bright red eyes, steepled her hands and bowed. Her appearance suggested her methods were firmly entrenched in the dark side, but her reputation was solid. She honoured her employers, couldn’t be bought off, and was extremely competent.

“Captain Gwanshoo. A pleasure to meet you at last.” Said Liatrix. She matched the Twilek’s steepled hands in an honourable gesture of greeting. “Did you manage to secure the cargo?”

“Those Gamorreans? Sure thing. My crew is loading them up as we speak.” With a pointed thumb, she indicated a tall handsome young man, a wookiee, and a Zabrak in Mando armour loading slabs of carbonite encased Gamorreans into their hold. A few paces away, a haughty young woman in flamboyant purple and orange robes watched while a shifty Mon Calamari wearing Jedi robes paced, wringing his hands.

“Good work Captain. You recall the rest of my instructions?” Said Liatrix.

The Twi’lek tapped her temple. “Yep. Didn’t even have to write ‘em down.” Her brows met thoughtfully. “Odd bunch those Gamos. Never seen Albino ones before. Or Force users for that matter. Had to catch ‘em by surprise.”

Liatrix pulled a case from her backpack and offered it to the Captain. “Your pay for the first part of this job and a small bonus. I’ll meet you with the rest, after I’ve done what I need to. Should anything unforeseen happen, your pay will be forwarded to you from the IBC. Either way, you’ll be paid.”

“I thank you Master Jedi. I’ll hold onto these fellas at the location we discussed. Good luck.” With that, the freighter captain and her crew boarded. Within moments the freighter rose into the air, turned and blasted off to the stars.
Liatrix smiled to herself and turned toward the vegetation behind her. “I’m surprised you waited as long as you did Sith.”

A female tawny skinned Sith in simple black robes emerged from the shadowy foliage. A double bladed lightsaber hung at her hip. “I wanted to be sure this wasn’t a trap Jedi.”

“I assure you it’s not. I need your help. That cargo will be all yours once the mission is accomplished. I’m sure your Master will see the value…imagine... an army of Gamorrean Force users. You would be unstoppable, and you’ll be well rewarded.”

“Clever of you, having a third party hold it. Don’t make me regret this…Jedi.” She spoke the last word with undisguised venom.

((To be continued…))
((IBC = Intergalactic Banking Clan))
My debut novel ETERNITY AWAITS available now!

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Lunafox
09.18.2012 , 04:07 PM | #8
Hello again, here we go, with part three. I don’t think there is anything too spoilery in this installment. I hope you enjoy, more to come soon! <3


The Well of Undying Part 3
By Lunafox


Lord Scourge crouched in wait, the footsteps marching closer…closer…then the pregnant pause as they stopped at the control panel next to the entry.

With a laboured hiss the Defender’s hatch sprang open. Moving swiftly and with a peculiar serenity some Jedi might have envied, Scourge cut down the first complement of eight troopers and mowed the rest off their feet with the sheer muscular bulk and strength of his body. The ramp was clear. He charged into the horde of droids and troopers, slashing arms and legs until the path was well littered with body parts, smoking and fizzling from the searing burns of Scourge’s crimson lightsaber. Summoning the Force in powerful gusts, he sent others screaming across the landing bay of the Harrower. Their bodies crashed into the walls, the sound of clattering armour echoing in the bay.

“Eat lightsaber jerk!” Kira growled, as she sommersaulted over another unit running into the bay as back up. Bolts of laser fire skipped and ricocheted off her azure blades. She fought with extraordinary ferocity, her teeth gritted as she stabbed and slashed her way through the enemy.

Scourge caught sight of her from the corner of his eye. For the briefest moment, he was reminded of the petite sepia haired Master that had so thoroughly and insidiously burrowed into his psyche. His mind flashed on where she might be now—her rosy lips…skin—he could only imagine to be soft, and ocean blue eyes haunted him. Her laughter. His. The vision in his mind’s eye stoked his rage to a new plateau, propelling him into the next deployment of Imperial troops.

Rusk sprayed the stragglers with laser bursts, effectively mowing them down. Unable to contain himself any longer, T-7 slipped out of his hiding cubby and rolled down the Defender’s ramp. He slipped past the scuffle unseen, to an empty service passage. His dome rotated left and right as his sensors took in the layout of the vessel. He rolled dutyfully to a service conduit and inserted his tool arm, eagerly twisting it, as he accessed the ship’s controls through a back door in the circuitry.

Rusk cocked his head and glanced back at the others. “Clear.” He nodded and started down the passage, cautiously ducking behind niches and doorways, his stern cold gaze constantly appraising the situation.

“Scourge?” Kira arched a brow and inclined her head. “Are you hurt? You seem…” She reached out with the force to gain an understanding of what was troubling the Sith, but was met with nothing but a void.

“Keep moving. We don’t have much time.” Scourge hissed. The trio prowled the maze-like corridors. Scourge’s crimson eyes shifted warily as they moved. Within moments, Imperial troops poured in from all sides. Scarlet honeycomb shields corralled the trio at the heart of the crossroading passages. The troops aimed their weapons at the shielded trio.

“Put down your weapons.” One of the troopers clipped in a metallic tone. Reluctantly the trio set their weapons on the floor before them, and raised their hands. Scourge’s eyes narrowed. He looked up.

A thin greenish haze shimmered over the Imperial troops from the vents above them. They coughed and doubled over. Some pulled off their helmets and clawed at their eyes, gasping. Electricity lanced through the hallways frying the droids with them. Within moments the Imperials were mere heaps on the floor.

“They’re all dead.” Kira looked to Scourge and Rusk. “What just happened?”
With a groan above them, the ceiling vents siphoned the lethal Syntox gas from the air outside the shielding, effectively clearing it. The shields around the trio fizzled.

As if in answer to Kira’s inquery, a triumphant series of beeps, sounding very much like a cavalry charge rang out.
“T-7. Are we ever glad to see you.” Kira chirped.

Rusk saluted the little droid and nodded, his eyes actually crinkling at the corners.

“Well done droid.” Said Scourge. High praise from the Sith Lord who seemed to regard the astromech droid as little more than an appliance most days.

“You took out the whole ship?” Kira knelt before T-7. The droid whirred and bounced. “He’s cleared it for us.” She beamed. They reclaimed their weapons.

“Lets move.” Scourge reached out with his senses to validate the droid’s efforts, and to his great relief felt no life signs aboard. “Find whatever we need to repair The Defender. Make haste. There is no knowing how long we’ll be alone here.”

“And what will you be doing?” Said Kira.

“I’m going to the bridge, to see if I can learn more about this. This wasn’t a random occurance. I’m certain of it.” He stated matter-of-factly. “When you’ve finished with repairs, I want you to issue me a copy of Master Liatrix’s mission logs, and any datafiles you found in regards to the transmissions to the Sith Empire you spoke of.”
Kira stared at the Sith, brows knitting. “Fine. Satisfaction guaranteed.” She said acidly.
Rusk nodded. “Sir, yes sir.”
*****


“Put these on. You’ll draw less attention.” The Sith thrust a set of black hooded robes at Master Liatrix. These were the first words the Sith had uttered during the entire trip from Vzer to Korriban.

“I’m grateful.” Liatrix accepted the robes, quickly sloughing her damp ones and slipping on the Sith’s spare set. “I’ve heard of your Master…Lord Zash. She’s quite a mover and shaker in your world isn’t she.”

“That’s not your concern Jedi.” The young Sith narrowed her yellow eyes at Liatrix.

“I’m sensing Lord Zash doesn’t appreciate you as much as you’d like.” Liatrix faced the girl. “Tell me why.” She spoke with a subtle flourish of fingers.

“I will tell you why.” The Sith relaxed and obeyed. “I’m one of many apprentices Lord Zash has. I’m hoping when I present those Force sensitive Gamorreans to her, I’ll take the place of her most valued. The one she has now irritates me, and the Dashade with her, makes it impossible to deal with her in the traditional way.

“The traditional way…assassination?”

“Of course.” Said the Sith.

“Lead me to the Well of Undying now.” Liatrix rolled her hand before the Sith.

“I will lead you to the Well of Undying now…” The Sith’s voice took on a soft monotone again.

The black robed duo disembarked Liatrix’ chartered BT-7. The Jedi squinted and took in the landscape—pale rosy skies, punctuated by russet monolithic giants, heads bowed in reverence to some unseen master. In the distance stood a great structure with a pyramid at it’s centre, the sun resting atop the apex like a crown—The Sith Academy. Tiny dust devils gathered at their feet as they moved, the breeze hot and dry.

Liatrix opened the storage compartment of the ship, summoning a pair of speeders with a remote. She snatched up a pack of provisions and strapped it to her back.

“Let’s ride.” Said Liatrix, as she mounted the speeder bike. The Sith nodded and led the way.

As they rode, Liatrix allowed her thoughts to meander where they might. As always they settled on him. Those eyes. That voice—a voice that could entice her to throw away everything she’d earned…

Liatrix shivered in the Korriban heat and drew a deep breath…

((To be continued))
My debut novel ETERNITY AWAITS available now!

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Lunafox
09.21.2012 , 03:33 AM | #9
And finally the end! I hope you all enjoyed reading as much as I did writing it. Kindly let me know if you liked it. If you did, I might be inclined to drop a few more stories on the forum. Other pairings, that might please some of you more…Thanks for reading! <3


Scourge’s instinct had been dead on. The encounter between the Harrower and the Defender was not a coincidence. Having spent hours deliberating over Liatrix’s classified mission logs, and those of the seized Harrower, Scourge had learned two things: Liatrix had struck a deal with a minor apprentice of the archaeologist Lord Zash and that the Moff governing the Harrower recognized the Defender as a wanted ship from the exchanged communiques, and set an intercept course after the apprentice had departed.

The Sith Lord rolled his tendril ring between his thumb and index finger, brows meeting. The Jedi Council had assigned Master Liatrix the task of securing a group of endangered Gamorrean force sensitives and escorting them to Tython. For whatever reason, Liatrix had agreed to exchange the force sensitives for passage to some unknown location.

Scourge drew a deep breath and muttered. “To what point and purpose…why would you betray the Jedi Council. What could you desire so greatly, that you would do this.” He paced the cargo bay, so immersed in his own mind, that the clatter of tools and frustrated voices of the others as they made repairs were lost to him.

He closed his eyes and emptied his mind. He’d learned from Revan, that answers usually presented themselves in one form or another when the mind’s noise had quieted. A swirl of remembered colours and images flitted through his mind’s eye…outcomes and possibilities, figures that refused to solidify, and then he saw her…

Master Liatrix moved with the terrifying grace of a Sith Lord, her twin magenta sabres driving back the young Sith who had escorted her. The apprentice, falsely believing she could challenge the seasoned Jedi, teetered on the edge of the maw behind her. With a flick of the wrist, Liatrix disarmed the apprentice, her dual bladed lightsaber shattering into tiny pieces. With a raised palm, Liatrix sent the Sith apprentice backwards into the Well…her screams silenced with a sickening thud.
”The Well required a sacrifice.” Liatrix spoke in a low voice. Her ocean blue eyes burned crimson now. She took a step towards the circular well and peered into the darkness. The sound of water bubbling and gurgling echoed in the chamber. An amethyst glow punctuated the water’s inky depths as it rose. The flow of water stopped when its surface was level with the vast circumference of the Well. An amethyst coloured holocron bobbled at the very centre. Liatrix reached out with the force, but the holocron would not move. She tried myriad ways to draw it closer. Frustration. She pondered the holocron for some time, and then shucked her outer robes. No sooner had she leapt in to retrieve it, the water and the cube both vanished. She yelped, and then the sound of her body hitting rock bottom echoed in the chamber. Motionless, she lay broken and bleeding at the bottom of the well.

Scourge blinked away the vision. His heart stomped in his chest like an angry drunk. Beads of cold sweat dotted his forehead. He tore out the Defender’s cargo bay, leaping the railing that lead to the entry hatch. He dashed for one of the ISF Interceptors in the adjacent bay of the Harrower. T-7 beeped a string of alarmed whistles and beeps.

Kira looked down from the top of the ship and lifted her welding goggles. “Scourge!” She cried out after him. “Where are you going?”

“No time.” He leapt into the cockpit of the fighter, the dome closing over him as he fired up controls. Within moments the figher sped out of the adjacent bay, leaving the ghost town of a Harrower behind him. Kira reached out with the force and felt sick.

“Rusk, something’s wrong. We gotta get outta here.”

“There are systems still inoperational.” He barked.

“Ok, but will she fly?” Kira’s tone was clipped and edgy.

“I don’t know Master Kira…I hope so.” He rose to his full height and pocketed his hydrospanner. “I sure hope so.”

“T-7…track Scourge if you can…then send a holo to Doc. I have a feeling we’re going to need him.” Kira pushed at the corner of her left eye with the sides of her fingers and swallowed hard. Even as a Master, there were times, she struggled with her emotions. “There is no emotion, there is peace…” She murmured.

Nearly three hundred years had passed since Scourge had last seen the Well of Undying. He remembered that last time as clearly as he remembered today. He focussed on the memory to keep from dwelling on the future he hoped to change. That day, he was certain he would never again set foot into the temple housing The Well of Undying. He was wrong.

Hidden deep in the canyons of Korriban, the Well was a legend only a handful of Sith were aware of, but as with any legend, it would grow and evolve. More would learn of it, and pass the stories. A few had made unsuccessful attempts over the centuries to extract the holocron hidden there, reputed to hold a wealth of information amassed by the Emperor’s millennia of existence.

“There will be those who will seek to usurp my throne Lord Scourge. To do so, they will seek the gift of immortality, that I have awarded to you. And some…” The Emperor eyed Scourge meaningfully, “May even seek to revoke such a ritual.”

“My Lord Emperor, I cannot fathom who would be so foolish—to give up such a gift.” He bowed slightly, but his expression remained unreadable.

“I don’t pretend to know or their reasons for it, only that they will come. I have foreseen it. The knowledge is mine alone…but let them try.” The Emperor laughed mirthlessly. “They will be met with the full measure of my power.” The corners of his lips crept up his pasty wrinkled cheeks. “They will be deceived and they will die.”

Scourge’s brows met as he remembered the Emperor summoning the aquatic force illusion and hiding the holocron within it. The Emperor set his hands upon the Well stones, as did Scourge. The stones responded, having been imbued with flesh memory.

“My Lord Emperor…the ritual…it can’t be undone?”

“No…of course not.” He chuckled coldly again and waved his hand dismissively.

“Then why the holocron?”

“Because it amuses me. To think there are those who believe I have no sense of humour.” The Emperor deadpanned.

The memory of the Emperor’s blighted grin and laughter lingered far longer than Scourge would have liked. Korriban came into view on the sensors. The next moments passed as quickly as the force vision Scourge had received. He landed the ISF Interceptor on the mesa above the entrance to the Temple. Grabbing a medkit, he nimbly made his way down, and entered the Temple.

The flame torches lining the corridors licked to life as if in welcome.

Scourge frowned. The silence was interrupted only by the occasional staccato of water dripping from the stalactites above. Unlike most of the caves, temples and tombs on Korriban, The Well of Undying was very damp…a hidden spring easily deceiving those searching for a well.

He dashed into the main chamber and reached out with the Force. There was only one lifesign—her force signature persistant and familiar. Kneeling at the edge of well, he set his palms upon the stones. The well groaned to life, as the bottom pushed upwards to the surface, as if on a hydraulic lift.

With a dismissive wave, he sent the corpse of the young Sith aside and knelt by Liatrix’s body. He rummaged through the fighter’s medkit and passed the scanner over her body, before injecting her with a sustaining stim. Drawing her close, he cradled her like a small child.
Her eyes flickered open, the crimson in them disbelieving…

“Lord Scourge… but how did you know to…” She rasped.

“I know you far better than you think.” He snapped gently.

She smiled up at him, a rivulet of blood escaping the corner of her mouth. He administered another stim, this one to fortify her. “I wanted to give you…your life back.” She coughed.

“I ought to leave you here to die. You fool.”

“I think it’s too late to stop that now anyhow.”

“Don’t talk, you’re exhausting yourself. I cannot fathom why you’d do this.”

“I think the reason is pretty obvious.” Liatrix whispered.

“If it’s some misguided attempt to repay my assistance…” He hissed.

“Idiot.” She laughed, half choking. “You once said to me…the surest path to the darkside is thwarted longing.”
Scourge’s scarlet eyes widened. “You did this…sacrificed all that you are…because you lust for me.”

“More than that…I love you.”

“I told you, what was done to me, cannot be undone. I cannot love you. I can never love you.” Scourge’s face twisted. He took her hand, brushing her knuckles against his cheek. His eyes closed for a moment as he gathered himself.

“You said, you would give anything if you could feel again.” She whispered.

“I wouldn’t give you. Even if it were possible.”

“But if it was…”

“Liatrix, listen to me. Were I able to act on my desires, my passions, to feel—to love you…do you truly believe that scalpel wielding dandy you married would keep me from you? I would cut him down, along with any other that would dare keep me from possessing you. The Jedi…the Dark Council be damned. Our passion would burn through the galaxy for an eternity.”

Liatrix squeezed his hand with a feebleness that made his stomach wrench. He was losing her.

“You said once, you remembered the colour of your first love’s eyes…what colour…were they?” She wheezed.

“The blue of oceans.” His brows quivered. “What I didn’t tell you…was that they were yours.”

“I don’t understand.”

“I saw the vision of you before the Emperor’s gift. That’s how I knew Reven and the Exile would fail. I knew then, I would wait for you…but I could never have you. Without immortality I’d never have met you. With it…I can only grieve what might have been.”

Liatrix shuddered involuntarily. “But that holocron…”

“The holocron…is a lie. A deception created by the Emperor to toy with those seeking knowledge against him.”

She choked and clung more fiercely to him. “I’m cold…” Her teeth chattered involuntarily.
He injected a third stim, this one directly to her carotid artery. She shivered, her eyes rolling back into her head for a moment.
Scourge held her to his chest, his face buried in her hair. “You cannot die. I won’t allow it.” He growled.

A rash of gunfire and the roar of a double bladed lightsaber outside the chamber shattered the silence.

“Where is she?!” Doc shouted. A few uncertain beeps sounded, as T-7 rolled into the Well chamber.

Doc dashed to the pair at the centre of the Well platform. Doc’s brows met as he regarded Scourge. “She isn’t…”

“No.” He hissed. “I’ve given her three stims…I have nothing else…”

Doc’s dark brown eyes flashed. He pulled several devices from his medical bag. He tugged at her eyelids and shone a light into them. “’Trix…hold on. Come on baby. What the hell happened to her eyes. You…” Doc accused.

“Don’t even...” Scourge hissed, a threatening index finger pointed at the combat medic.

Doc ran a scanner over her. “Massive internal bleeding. Four broken ribs…aw hell not that…” He winced and set his hand over his forehead.

“What.” Scourge demanded.

“She mustn’t have known…she was barely four weeks along.”

“Do not tell her. If she lives, do not add to her suffering.” Said Scourge.

Outside the chamber, the blaster fire died down. Kira ran into the chamber, her double bladed lightsaber hissing as she retracted it.

“Master!” She flew to the group gathered in the temple. “Is she going to be okay?”

“What happened out there.” Said Scourge.

“The Sith sent an armoured guard to see what was going on here. We got ‘em. But there’s no telling how long we can hold out here. I have C2 dealing with her rental. He’s going to pilot it back to Coruscant.”

“What of the Defender…” Scourge demanded.

“If we can get her to it, we can get the hell off this rock. The sooner the better.” Said Kira.

Doc nodded, and pulled an extensible field stretcher from his bag. “Let’s do it. I need to get her into kolto, if she can hold on that long.” Doc’s voice quaked. He arched a brow in a failed attempted to hide his tears. Carefully, Rusk and Scourge settled Liatrix onto the stretcher.

Rusk watched stoicly. He promptly took up one end of the field stretcher, Doc taking the other. Scourge and Kira led them out, their lightsabers at the ready.

*****


Kira poked her head into the med bay. “How is she, Doc?”
Like an obedient pup, T-7 rolled in next, Rusk trailing behind him.

Doc glanced back at the Defender’s kolto tank. “She’s doin’ all right. Gave me quite a scare. A few more days and she’ll be up and at it with the best of 'em. Can’t tell you how glad I am the Jedi order ok'd the funding for this. Not a moment too soon.” He patted the tank.

“That’s good news.” Kira gave Doc’s upper arm a squeeze. “I took care of her cloak and dagger stuff. I shipped the Gamo’s off to Tython. We decided to blame that Sith for carbonizing them. Took me a while to explain things, but Master Satele doesn’t suspect a thing. She’s just happy the Gamos made it in one piece, even if she does have to defrost them. Oh yeah, and I paid that Smuggler too. Gave her a bit extra to keep quiet.”

“That’s a load off. Thanks. I owe you. All of you.” Doc craned his neck, noting that the Sith Lord was conspicuously absent. “You’ll excuse me? There’s someone else I gotta chat with.”

Doc made his way into the cargo bay with some trepidation.

Scourge glared at him.

“I,” Doc hesitated. “I owe you an apology Lord Scourge. You saved her life…and I did a terrible job of showing my gratitude. I’m not sure I understand everything that happened yet, but I owe you…everything.” Doc thrust his hand at Scourge to shake.

The Sith glowered at the doctor and refused his hand. “Leave me.”

Doc took back his unshaken hand, and awkwardly ran it over the back of his head, smoothing a cowlick in his dark hair. “Er, right then. Just don’t kill me in my sleep, okay?” He quirked his lips nervously and backed out of the cargo bay.

Scourge watched him jog up the stairs to the main level, his footfalls suggesting he was going to their bedroom.

Kill him in his sleep…now there’s a temptation.

Scourge drew a deep breath and made his way into the med bay. He watched as Liatrix bobbled in the healing solution. He stood inches from the tall cylinder. Sensing his presence, she opened her eyes, the corners crinkling as she smiled. She pressed her right palm to the glass wall of the kolto tank.
Scourge raised his hand and pressed his palm to the glass to mirror hers.

Immortality was very much like a thin pane of glass. He couldn’t feel her, but she was there. That was enough.

~Fin.~

((for now!))
My debut novel ETERNITY AWAITS available now!

Magdalane's Avatar


Magdalane
09.21.2012 , 09:04 AM | #10
Beautiful!
Love is the strongest magic of them all.