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No Death, Only Wrath: Volume 3


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bright_ephemera
07.05.2015 , 10:25 AM | #1
*shuffles through the dust on the stage* Hi, all. Been a while. *adjusts the microphone at the podium*

Nalenne was a warrior Sith
Who was known as a borderline myth.
Though easily piqued,
To her friends’ aid she streaked
And invited her pals to come with.


Some time ago I published a hundred-short-chapter story called There Is No Death, There Is Only Wrath (NDOW). It followed the exploits of Sith Warrior Nalenne in the interlude after the end of the class lines. A followon, No Death, Only Wrath: The Helicarrier Chronicles, continued Nalenne’s story.

Here, for the first time, Nalenne takes on game canon. In No Death, Only Wrath: Volume 3, warrior Nalenne and her inquisitor sister Niselle embark on the adventures of Forged Alliances and beyond. They are helped or hindered by their intrepid crews along with the Imperial military Insanity Company and plentiful quantities of sisterly rivalry.

Spoiler policy:

Warrior and Inquisitor Acts 1-3 spoilers are assumed throughout, along with the general story of the Shadow of Revan expansion. The general arc (Forged Alliances, Rishi, Yavin) will always be marked above each story. Details of class stories apart from the endgame job titles/descriptions, and post-recruitment companion plotlines, will always be marked in bold. Class-specific content in post-Chapter 3 sequences will always be marked in bold. NDOW and NDOW: Chronicles are not required reading, though spoilers for them show up as background here pretty fast. If you pick one to read first, pick NDOW.

It should be clarified that all companions are alive at the beginning of this story. Except Lord Scourge (see the Helicarrier Chronicles for that).


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bright_ephemera
07.05.2015 , 10:26 AM | #2
Part 3-1. In which we see a slice of Nalenne’s downtime

Hiatus is code for “good times”;
Morale clambers upward and climbs.
For leisurely days
Are for soaking up rays
Or soaking in proceeds of crimes.



The S.A.B.E.R. Helicarrier cruised through deep space like a shark through the merciless inky void; that is to say, it wasn’t breathing and had taken on a dark greyish tinge.

The crew within were not worried. Quinn was on leave from his duties on the Method, which meant Nalenne was in a good mood, which meant Jaesa was minimally terrorized, Vette was downright perky, Pierce was lacking only a good firefight to make his day ideal, and Broonmark was peacefully absorbed in tinkering with either stims or bioweapons, no one was really sure which, in the cargo hold.

“So how great was that Tatooine rental?” Vette said to no one in particular. “Sandy beaches…”

“No rakghouls,” chimed Jaesa.

“No Sand People,” grumbled Pierce.

“No containment breaches,” said Quinn.

“Plenty of shade,” said Nalenne, passing a head over her bare red but unburned head.

“So take out everything that makes Tatooine Tatooine and it’s practically tolerable!” said Vette. “We should go again sometime.”

Quinn frowned. “We do have a war to prosecute, you know.”

“Vacation time still adds up when you’re prosecuting wars,” said Vette. “It’s a rule.”

“No it isn’t,” said Quinn. “Not in the Imperial military.”

“I think she meant in the figurative sense,” Jaesa said diplomatically.

“Give me ten minutes with the database and it’ll be a rule,” muttered Vette.

“Not to say the captain had a point or anything,” said Pierce, “but we do have a war to get back to.”

“And I can’t wait,” said Nalenne. “The Hand isn’t talking to me ever since that little incident with the bathrobe…”

“Are we ever going to hear about that?” said Pierce with a small, very sharp smile.

“No,” Nalenne and Jaesa said simultaneously.

“Anyway,” said Nalenne, “I think we get to pick our targets.”

Quinn straightened further. “It just so happens that I have a list…”

“Hero of Tython,” Broonmark buzzed from down the hall.

“What?” said Vette.

Nalenne held up a hand for quiet. She executed the fine series of self-Force-choke variants necessary to produce the sounds of a native Talz. She didn’t do it quite right. “Big of Tyyython snack later,” she called.

“…Good try,” Broonmark rattled back, and went back to work.

“Vette,” said Pierce, “lay off the chirping.”

“What? I wasn’t chirping. I can if you want me to, though.” She tapped her inert slave collar. “Ch–”

But the chirping was the holo, and Nalenne answered.
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Vesaniae
07.05.2015 , 10:32 AM | #3
Glad to see Nalenne and crew making a comeback! Hijinx will undoubtedly ensue.
There's always lightning.

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Lunafox
07.05.2015 , 01:54 PM | #4
I have the feeling I'm really going to enjoy this Can't go wrong with SW stories! I also enjoy the verses you post as a lead in. Neat idea!
Well, I guess this is it, your Highnessness. So long!

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bright_ephemera
07.06.2015 , 05:01 AM | #5
Part 3-2. In which Nalenne is made privy to a plan

This series has pervasive spoilers for the Shadow of Revan introduction, Forged Alliances. It also regularly uses the chapter 3 titles for the Sith Warrior and Sith Inquisitor, along with the background of their companions.

Beniko and Arkous and Goh
Had a plan to bring Jedi to woe.
Their brilliant solution
Required execution
By someone more willing to show.



The conference room was a narrow assemblage of brightly colored readouts making a manic attempt at emulating productivity. When Nalenne walked in she found three Sith: a lithe Pureblood a head taller than her, a seated Chagrian who appeared to be making a go at meditating a Dark Side singularity into being right here in the middle of the Imperial fleet, and a Human with artfully tousled blonde hair. They all felt powerful, which had Nalenne seriously reconsidering this invitation. Two to one was fun play. Three to one might be an even fight.

And then it got worse. Niselle walked in.

“What is she doing here?” they said, pointing.

“Ah, my esteemed colleagues,” said the tall Pureblood, gesturing grandly. “If I could carry a tune I would sing of this day.” Nalenne looked at Niselle. Niselle looked at Nalenne and barely shrugged. “What we are about to accomplish, the galaxy will forever behold with great wonderment.” He lowered his eyes from the visionary rafters. “But perhaps I’m getting ahead of myself. After all, we’ve never properly met.”

“Yes, we have,” said Niselle. “We had lunch last week after the Council debate. You spent the entire time staring at Khem and stuttering when you tried to talk.”

“I’ve never properly met your sister,” Arkous amended. “A pleasure. In my capacity as Minister of Military Offense, I have repeatedly enjoyed the fruits of your labor.”

“Military Offense?” Nalenne said skeptically. “You’re too young. Why don’t we have the guy who coordinated the Sacking of Coruscant? He was good.”

Niselle sighed. “He was murdered, you twit. As were the five Ministers after him.”

“Oh,” said Nalenne. And, brightly, “Good luck!”

“Moving on,” Arkous said loudly. “This is my most trusted advisor, Lana Beniko.”

The blonde turned around from her console and fluttered her eyelashes. “So much strength I sense in you,” she said, looking from Nalenne to Niselle and back. “After all the trials you’ve endured, to stand here now is quite an achievement.”

“No thanks to you,” Nalenne coughed sideways.

“Look who’s talking,” Niselle wheezed back.

Lana stood perfectly still during the byplay, then continued with consummate, nearly un-Sith-like professionalism. “You’ve been invited here to perform an act once thought impossible: an attack on the Jedi Temple of Tython.”

Nalenne took that in for a moment.

“Are we, now,” she said.

Arkous beamed. “Promising leads have been rare ever since Imperial Intelligence was effectively dismantled. However, a source I personally trust has alerted me to a hole in Tython’s planetary defenses.”

“You might want to watch out for leads from personally trusted people,” drawled Niselle, staring at Nalenne.

“Oh, shut up,” said Nalenne. “Exactly what weaknesses do you expect to find in the defenses of the base of the Jedi Council’s power in the center of Republic space? Did you figure out when all the perimeter guards take their lunch break?”

A defiant Arkous stuck out his chin. “Is there something wrong with that?”

“Oh, no. I’m sure they have gaping holes in their defenses just waiting for the Sith brain trust to roll in.”

“That’s not outside the realm of possibility,” said Niselle. “I have a Jedi for an apprentice. I assure you they are all highly trained in the art of being a moron.”

Arkous was developing a certain strain about the eyes, as if he sensed this conversation getting away from him. “Yes! If we act fast and strike hard, it will absolutely ruin Republic morale. Annihilate it.”

Lana nodded. “While you concern yourself with the assault, Lord Goh will be tasked with keeping the Temple secured.”

Niselle frowned. “Wait, is he going to keep it secured before or after we assault it?”

“He will follow your lead,” Lana said impatiently, “and retain possession of the Temple after you pass through.”

Nalenne peered at the meditating Chagrian. “Is he going to wake up in time?”

“Some of us actually hone our skills,” Niselle murmured at no one in particular.

“I hone,” retorted Nalenne. “I hone all the time. I can hone right now if you really want me to.”

“As if anyone wants to see that,” Niselle continued in no specific direction.

Lana gave a strangled little cough. “So long as we have control, we’ll explore the artifacts and histories stored inside. Imagine all we can learn about the Jedi and the Force.”

“Or we could just burn it,” said Nalenne. “Just a thought. Professional opinion of the Emperor’s Wrath.”

Arkous shook his head decisively. “The longer we hold the Jedi Temple, the deeper the wound to the Republic’s morale, and the longer it will take them to recover.”

“We can hold ashes. I’m fine with that.”

Niselle crossed her arms, frowning. “Not that I’m agreeing, but last time I checked it takes longer to recover from incineration than from three hours’ sitting there reading their stolen books.”

“Lord Goh and the others will be hard at work extracting what knowledge we can from the Temple,” said Lana. “For now, your shuttle awaits.”

Nalenne frowned. “You mean transport, right? A big one? Full of strapping young shock troopers?”

“My lord? It will just be the two of you.”

“Like hell it is. My crew goes where I do.” Nalenne looked at her sister. “And whatever she can scrape up.”

“I’ll bring Ashara,” Niselle said languidly. “It’ll be just like the life she could have had if I hadn’t kidnapped her. Only with more killing Jedi and setting fire to every sanctuary she might ever have sought.”

“Insanity Company should be here,” said Nalenne. “Can you imagine them all getting to overrun Tython?”

Niselle sneered. “Your husband would have some trouble containing himself, wouldn’t he?”

“That’s for him to know and me to find out. I’m just saying–”

“Time grows short,” said Arkous, “and glory awaits. If you don’t mind…?”

“My crew are just upstairs,” said Niselle.

“My people should be on deck three with the ice cream guy,” said Nalenne.

“And then you’ll go?” said Arkous through a clench-toothed smile.

“Sure,” said Nalenne. “Why not?”
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bright_ephemera
07.06.2015 , 03:23 PM | #6
Quote: Originally Posted by Vesaniae View Post
Glad to see Nalenne and crew making a comeback! Hijinx will undoubtedly ensue.
Indubitably.

Quote: Originally Posted by Lunafox View Post
I have the feeling I'm really going to enjoy this Can't go wrong with SW stories! I also enjoy the verses you post as a lead in. Neat idea!
The limericks are by far the most addictive part of writing Nalenne. And there's a lot of Nalenne-addiction going on my head. Which is why I'm sharing with the class!
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bright_ephemera
07.08.2015 , 04:56 AM | #7
Part 3-3. In which Nalenne and Niselle land on Tython

This series has pervasive spoilers for the Shadow of Revan introduction, Forged Alliances. It also regularly uses the chapter 3 titles for the Sith Warrior and Sith Inquisitor, along with the background of their companions.


Tython, the Jedi retreat
Has never known loss or defeat.
Unless you pre-date,
in which case your fate
was sealed by said Jedi, tout-suite.
(This limerick dedicated to the Flesh Raiders.)


Lieutenant Pierce touched his rifle’s barrel to the ground and ripped out the smoking plasma canister before fitting another in its place. He looked up at Nalenne and beamed. “Best. Assignment. Ever.”

“We haven’t even hit the Jedi yet,” said Nalenne, scanning the battlefield. All along the forested ridge, droids and hapless Republic soldiers were charging and screwing it up. Niselle and Xalek were linked furies of lightning, apparently competing for the crown of “least efficient mass murderer on the field.” Ashara was yelling objections of some sort even while she swung her mismatched green sabers, Nalenne wasn’t really clear on that. Andronikos appeared to be hefting a pistol in one hand and an oversized flask in the other, rampaging through a drinking game of his own device. Talos appeared to be taking notes. Khem Val waded through the damned like he’d been born for this. To be fair, after a thousand years of nothing pretty much any movement would feel like he’d been born for it. The point was, however, he seemed ready and eager for the work at hand or at claw.

On Nalenne’s side, Jaesa, sniffling a little, had refused Nalenne’s offer of a tour and instead volunteered to stay with the shuttle. Vette was trailing Nalenne with a big burlap sack for trophy lightsabers, leaving Broonmark and Pierce to flank Nalenne while Quinn took advantage of the chaos to surgically excise droids from the field. For once she let his affinity for murderbots go unremarked. It was just so satisfying to watch droids seize up and fall over.

Satisfying, and yet…“Nis?” yelled Nalenne as she launched herself at another knot of Republic defenders.

“What?” Niselle yelled, irritably. Her next bolt of Force lightning arced over Khem Val and took out his two next targets. The woman never did know to respect a kill.

“Have you noticed that the Jedi’s first line of defense is non-Jedi?” yelled Nalenne.

“Hm. I was just thinking these were too easy.”

“If I don’t actually get to fight Jedi on this expedition there’s going to be hell to pay back with Arkous.”

“We’ll find someone.”

“We better.”

The ball of Sith destruction rolled on.
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bright_ephemera
07.10.2015 , 04:17 PM | #8
Part 3-4. In which Nalenne and Niselle make battle plans on the fly

This series has pervasive spoilers for the Shadow of Revan introduction, Forged Alliances. It also regularly uses the chapter 3 titles for the Sith Warrior and Sith Inquisitor, along with the background of their companions.


When foes are ka-boomed and ker-splatted,
Defense and morale are combatted.
We all know what’s done:
The work is such fun
When insult’s to injury added.




"Droid-dammit," huffed Nalenne, and lopped the head off another gangly combat droid. As the Jedi had not yet got the hang of putting their critical processing somewhere less vulnerable, the droid dropped like a sack of desh. "Where did the actual Jedi go? I could swear we had one in here somewhere."

"Stealth, my lord," reported Quinn. "Reconfiguring my data scanner no-urk."

"NONE OF THAT." Nalenne leaped to swing her saber, a desperate attempt to rescue Quinn from anything and everything.

He held very, very still. "It's nothing, my lord. I just stepped on one of these..." He turned up his boot to reveal a stiff metal corkscrew, still smoking..."things."

"Droids." That's when Nalenne felt the saber whoosh behind her head. She whirled and engaged.

Once the last of the droids were down, and their little master too, Nalenne surveyed the freshly durasteel-carpeted field. "Nis?"

"Hmm?"

"I think the entire Jedi curriculum just flashed before our eyes."

“I think you’re right. Sad, really.”

They pressed on up the stairs.

The foyer had seen better days, for instance yesterday or possibly this morning. Now a huge holocron sculpture had rolled back into the embrace of the twin curving stairs. The twin curving stairs were cracked and scattered with debris.

And, all over the floor, in some cases perched on larger fallen rocks, were Jedi.

The whole room shook. Everyone looked up. Nalenne frowned. "Guys? You can stop now. Quinn. Tell them to stop now. Orbital bombardment is not how I want to go."

"Right away, my lord." Quinn took out his holo.

"We could just step outside and let them get crushed," said Niselle. "Like you just told us not to do."

"What, and miss a brawl like this? I think-" Nalenne stuck her saber out to the side and skewered a leaping Jedi "-not."

Before the fight was even over Quinn trotted over to a console and started typing. A well-exercised and cheerful Nalenne caught up. “So?”

“Up those stairs and around here are the Jedi Council chambers,” said Quinn. “I recommend–”

“A photo shoot,” said Niselle. “Of course. Let’s kill everyone and then get pictures sitting in their chairs. Darth Arkous wanted a morale hit? The HoloNet will love it. And so will everyone who ever had a bone to pick with the Republic.”

Nalenne nodded, only partially convinced. “Then we scour the whole place top to bottom. With lightsabers.”

“Obviously,” said Niselle, rolling her eyes. “I wasn’t going to skip that.”
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Lunafox
07.10.2015 , 10:44 PM | #9
Love it! Especially the last bit. How delectably evil to want to kill them all and then take selfies with their stuff. Awesome.
Well, I guess this is it, your Highnessness. So long!

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bright_ephemera
07.11.2015 , 03:13 PM | #10
Quote: Originally Posted by Lunafox View Post
Love it! Especially the last bit. How delectably evil to want to kill them all and then take selfies with their stuff. Awesome.
I always hope the dark stays dark humor, but the idea of Nalenne dancing on Satele Shan's chair and posting the results to the Holonet was just too good to pass up.
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