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Marr


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Lunafox
07.01.2016 , 06:14 PM | #21

Star Wars: The Old Republic
Marr

~Chapter Three~

What is regret…but the kind word left unspoken, the chance not taken, or the harsh lesson learned? It is all of these things, but most of all, it is the choice that hurts those who love us.


I peered around the edge of the tarpaulin divider, my mother’s scream still sharp in my ears.

The alien stood at least a half meter taller than most men, a natural mail of rust coloured scales covering its body. Sharp talons tipped its hands and feet, and as if its natural defenses weren’t enough, it wore heavily scored plate over its torso and legs. The ill-fitting armour bore half faded markings I didn’t recognize, and I suspected the creature had claimed it as a macabre trophy from one of its victims.

It snarled at my mother in a guttural grinding language, and while I couldn’t understand it, there was no mistaking the meaning behind the heavy blaster jammed up against her cheek.

Yellow needle-thin teeth flashed under crusty lips as it repeated its demands.

“I’m telling you the truth. I don’t know any Darth Taxon,” Mother whimpered. “We were never on Ziost. I swear.”

The creature sensed her deceit and cocked its pistol.

I crept from behind the wall and inched closer. My mother’s eyes grew wide. I knew she’d seen me and feared giving me away.

My heart skipped in a wild rhythm and my right hand opened and closed in anticipation of drawing my weapon. I craved the weight and feel of the lightsaber in my hand but held off. I couldn’t show my advantage too soon.
Somehow I had to lure the alien away from her.

It smelled liked a greasy bantha hide and I realized at that moment, that I stood too close. My mother realized it too. I held my breath and backed away.

The alien’s nostrils twitched as it registered my presence.

My mother slammed her heel down hard, stomping one of the being’s scaly toes. It snarled what I guessed was a curse. It didn’t suffer for long, but the distraction was enough. Taking advantage, she jostled free.

The alien whirled on me. What happened next, happened so quickly I often questioned my memory of it.

The beast charged. I fell backwards and drew the hilt of my lightsaber before the full crushing weight of the alien landed on top of me. I gasped, unable to breathe. My thumb twitched. The lightsaber extended and liquid heat leaked over my hand and up my arm before the wound cauterized. The alien’s eyes grew wide and a thread of spittle spilled over its lip.

Our eyes met and a gurgling hiss escaped it as the glossy green eyes cracked and dimmed. I retracted my blade and pushed at the fresh corpse pinning me to the floor. My teeth clenched from the effort and I panted. My mother tugged at its arm until the body shifted just enough that I could scramble free.

Green blood oozed from underneath it. I expected more, given its bulk.

I stood frozen, my feet rooted to the floor. Unable to breathe or move or speak, I stared at the corpse at my feet. Its tongue lolled from the side of its mouth and the stench of its innards made my eyes water. I had never killed anything before.

My mother knelt before me. She caressed my face and her fingers raked my hair. Satisfied I wasn’t hurt, she embraced me.

“Ares, you could’ve been killed.” She chided me between sobs and kissed the top of my head no less than a dozen times. I rested my chin on her shoulder and closed my eyes.

“Are you all right? Ares? Say something…”

“I…can’t…breathe.”

“I’m sorry.” She relaxed her embrace and gripped my shoulders instead. “I couldn’t stand it if I lost you. Are you sure you’re all right?”

I nodded, though with more uncertainty than I hoped to let on. “What was that thing? It was going to kill you. I felt it.”

“It was a bounty hunter.”

“Do they all look like that?”

“No…this was a Trandoshan.”

All at once the gravity of what I’d done struck me. “I killed it. What if the foreman finds out? Father will lose his job…It came looking for us, didn’t it? How did it find us? We’re going to have to leave now, aren’t we?”

“Ares, hush. Let me think. I need to think.” Her hands shook. “We need to get rid of the body before someone sees it.”

“Where are we going to put it?”

“I don’t know.” She crouched to lift the Trandoshan by its armpit.

I seized the other arm, but even together we couldn’t move it more than a few inches. I cringed at the sticky residue clinging to my hands. We heaved again in unison, but the corpse barely moved.

“He’s too heavy…” She panted, giving up. “I can’t.”

“We could wait for Father to come home…”

“No…we can’t risk it. Someone might see. This is the last thing I want to do to your father…”

“We have to tell him…”

She lowered her gaze and sighed. “I know. I was afraid of this. Somehow Darth Taxon figured out that you’re still alive. Took him long enough, but still…” Her cheeks flushed and then her tears started anew.

My mother faded from my awareness until there was nothing. It was as if something had taken a hold of me and whispered in my ear. An idea began to germinate—an idea that was wholly mine yet utterly foreign at the same time.

The sensation left as suddenly as it had arrived, but the idea remained and solidified, and I was left wondering if this was how the Force communicated.

“Father said…the lightsaber would cut through anything…” The words came mindlessly with a resigned vacancy in my voice. With a flick of my wrist, the hilt re-appeared in my hand.

Her eyes grew wide and her mouth dropped open. She stared at me for what seemed like a long time. “Y-you’re not suggesting…cutting…” Her hand flew over her mouth and her cheeks faded from a hot red to an ashen green.

I nodded quickly.

“Maker help us…” She whispered. Her face grew a terrible shade of white and I thought she might faint.

“I can do it, Ma. You don’t have to watch.”

She shook her head. “No…I need to sit…just for a minute. I won’t have you do this by yourself.”

For the next hour, the sizzling growl of my lightsaber was the only sound between us. When the grisly chore was finished we wrapped each chunk in plastite and hauled the pieces past the clearing where I’d first held my lightsaber the night before. After scattering the pieces as far away as we could manage, we returned to the tent, hoping that predators would eliminate the rest.

While scrubbing away the Trandoshan’s sticky green blood the tent flaps shifted and a tall shadow crept over the floor.

“Lish…”

My mother swore and whipped off her stained apron. She rolled it into a wad and thrust it at me to dispose of.

“Lord Corsin…this is a surprise.”

The foreman strode closer to her. “I hope I’m not interrupting anything…I came to—”

I stared at the tall red Sith and realizing my mouth was agape, I shut it. After disposing of our soiled clothes, I pulled on a clean tunic and stood by the wall, watching.

His vivid yellow eyes fixed on me. “I came to see how the boy was doing.” Something in his eyes registered surprise and I suspected he hadn’t really come to check on me.

My mother straightened and finger combed her hair to neaten it. “What an unexpected honour this is…how kind of you, Lord Corsin.” She bowed slightly and an uncertain smile flickered across her face.

She extended her hand to me, urging me closer. I crept forward and stood next to her, if not slightly behind her. “As you can see, Ares is doing very well. I can’t thank you enough for your generous gift, my Lord.”

He waved her off. “Think nothing of it. Had I been aware of the situation sooner, I would have put a stop to it. Boys will be boys,” he said with a pronounced sigh. “Come closer Ares. No need to be timid around me.”

I hesitated and my mother urged me on. “Go on…it’s all right.”

“Let me take a look at you.”

Lord Corsin seemed more of a diplomat than a foreman in the way he moved and spoke. His opulent robes appeared out of place in the dusty wilderness.

I stood before him, and he knelt to look me in the eyes.

“I sense the Force in you…so much raw power…and yet you restrain it…like it’s something to hide or be ashamed of. Pity. If you’re to become Sith, this timid streak must be broken."

He gave me a hearty poke in the shoulder and winced at the stringy thin mass he felt. “Not to mention we need to get some meat on your bones. I’ll see to ordering extra meat for the boy…to bulk up.”

“Thank you my lord, but he’s not timid…only wary…and that’s a good quality for anyone to have, especially the Sith.”

“I suppose you’re right.” He chuckled, the sound almost warm. “Tell me, Ares, why didn’t you defend yourself against the boys?”

His gaze didn’t waver and I looked down.

He clasped my chin and turned my face up. “Come now…tell me the truth. Did you fear them? Or did you fear punishment?”

“Neither, my Lord.”

“Then tell me why? And don’t mumble. Speak up and look me in the eye. Only slaves lower their eyes. You’re no slave. Now tell me.”

“I didn’t want to make trouble for my father. He values his work and we depend on him.”

Corsin shrank back. “How noble—a quality many Sith lack these days. Only the old families remember the importance of honour and nobility. No need to fear for your father. He’s my most dedicated workman.”

He straightened and clasped his hands behind his back. “The boys won’t bother you again, but should they need reminding…stand up for yourself. Understand, Ares?”

“Yes, my Lord.”

“One more thing…would you like to learn to be a proper Sith?”

I nodded.

“Good. Now, why don’t you run along? I need to speak with your mother.”

I glanced back at her.

She caressed my cheek and smiled. “I’ll be fine. Go outside and play. I’ll call when supper is ready…and be careful.”

The nervous flutter in her voice worried me. My eyes wandered to where the bounty hunter’s corpse had been. A smudge of green stained the ground sheet.

Corsin set his hand over my shoulder. “Protective of your mother, I see. No need. She’ll be quite safe in my company.”

Reluctantly, I ducked out of the tent and frowned. The sun was still high in the sky and a rare cool breeze wafted around me. Any other day I wouldn’t have hesitated to find adventure in the forest behind our encampment. Any other day.

I shuffled to the rear of the tent and crawled under the side wall and into my room. Still tired from disposing of the alien, I flopped onto my cot. The roof heaved up and down in time with the wind and I yawned. I closed my eyes but re-opened them when Lord Corsin spoke.

“The Force is strong in him, Lish. He could have a bright future with the proper teachers.”

“But the school here…”

“…Is not fit for the Sith,” he interrupted. “It serves to keep the younglings occupied and out from underfoot, nothing more. Why do you think the boys fight? There’s nothing else that speaks to their blood or their heritage. They need more. You want the best for Ares, no?”

“I do…but…Lord Corsin…meaning no disrespect, we can’t afford anything more. I wish I could do better for him, but we have no other prospects. All we have is Ailan’s wages.”

The melancholy in her voice made my heart lurch. My eyes grew bleary. She had always said she wanted to give me the world and I knew she’d meant it.

“That could all change, my dear…”

“Lord Corsin…I’m marri—”

“When we’re alone, you can call me, Fior.”

“Yes, my—Fior.”

“Much better. I sense your unhappiness. I well understand how lonely this life can be. Let me help you.”

“How would I ever repay your kindness? I have nothing to offer...”

“Now, that’s not true.”

I heard the clink of cups and the slow shrill whistle of the kettle. The sweet floral scent of Kopi tea wafted through the tent and my stomach rumbled.

“Maybe I could work for you…surely you could use a maid or a cook? What do you take in your tea, Fior?”

“Nothing, I prefer it clear. Lish—I have slaves to that for me. Cooking and cleaning are no life, for a beautiful woman such as yourself.”

My mother giggled. Never had I heard her laugh like this and for reasons I failed to understand at the time, a plethora of emotions surfaced in me, leaving me both ashamed and confused.

“You flatter me…but it’s the only life I’ve ever known.”

“Truly? I wouldn’t have guessed…You’re a mystery, Lish. One I wish to unravel.”

His voice took on a suave wolfish tone and I frowned. Mother laughed again and while it was a welcome sound, my fists tightened.

“No…no mystery…just an ordinary woman.”

“There is nothing ordinary about you…let me help.”

I heard the sound of chairs pushing away from the table and a few shuffling steps and clinking cups.

“Ares should go to a proper school…he’s of age now. All the best instructors—I have connections on Dromund Kaas. Think of all he could become.”

“I need to think about it…”

“Then…while you’re thinking…think about this too.”

There was a long silence—too long. I sat up. Then I stood, fists clenched and mouth tight. I wanted nothing more than to storm in but thought better of it. Perhaps Corsin was right…I was too timid. The notion that I lacked nerve, served to stoke my anger. I folded my arms and seethed.

“That is something to think about…Fior.”

Her voice carried an excited breathiness, I’d only ever heard when she spoke to Father late at night—a sound I hadn’t heard in a long time.

“I want you, Lish, here…now. Whatever it takes…give yourself to me…”

“No—not like this. Not here. There are things I need to do first...to prepare.”

Another long silence passed between them and Mother spoke again. “You’re making it difficult for me…”

Corsin chuckled. “That’s my hope. I’ll return tomorrow…be ready for me. I expect things will change for the better very soon—for all of us.”

“I hope so…”

Another long silence passed, followed by whispered words I couldn’t make out.

“Thank you again for the tea, Lish. I’ll be thinking of you.”

The cool draft meandering through the tent told me he’d left. I was too tired to be angry for long. I shut my eyes and thought of the dead alien and before the next thought could materialize I was asleep.

Hours later, I woke to the sound of my father’s happy whistling. The smell of herbed meat filled the tent and my stomach rumbled again.

“Lish! Where are you…I have the best news.”

I heard the cook pots clatter. “You’re late…what happened?”

“I know, but we reached the library today—buried ninety meters down. You should have seen it…rows and rows of books and datacrons, all perfectly preserved. If only Ares could see this.”

“That’s wonderful.”

“But that’s not all…after we came back to the surface, the foreman called me aside. I thought he was going to say something about…last night. But he didn’t.”

“What did he want then?”

“I’ve been promoted to Site Manager. It’ll mean more hours, but he tripled my salary and gave me something he called benefits.”

“Benefits? I don’t understand…”

“It means the Empire will see to all our needs—more portions...medical costs…everything. And you know what else? Schooling for the boy. They’ll pay his way in full. He’s to go to Dromund Kaas…to become Sith.”

There was a long silence between them.

“Lish…tell me you’re happy. Just think if we’d left—we’d have missed out…”

“I am…happy. It’s good news.”

“You sound down…something wrong?”

“No…nothing. It’s just…I’m going to miss Ares…Dromund Kaas is so far away.”

“True…but we knew this day would come. We have to do right by him. It’s what Lord Tacitus would have wanted.”

“I suppose…”

“Where is he…I want to tell him all about it.”

“He’s outside…I’ll call for him.”

“This is what he was meant for, Lish. I can hardly wait to see the look on his face.”

“I want him to be happy, I want him to have everything,” she said softly.

“And now…it looks like we can finally give it to him.”

A moment of silence passed between them, and then my mother’s voice cut through the evening air—sharp as freshly honed clever—and all too willing to cut through any obstacle that stood in the way of my future.

I scrambled up from my cot and crawled out under the side wall. The sun had almost set and I rubbed the sandy remnants of sleep from my eyes. As they cleared, the memory of the alien bounty hunter and Lord Corsin crept back into my awareness. I caught myself hoping it had all been a bad dream, but the smear of green blood on my arm reminded me it wasn’t. I licked my thumb and rubbed at the mark until it faded.

My father had never been so happy, but even as a boy, I suspected it was not so much his work ethic as my mother’s promise to the foreman that bred the change in our station.

To speak of the hunter would diminish his hard-earned joy; but if one hunter came for us, surely another would follow.

If that wasn’t enough, how could I possibly allow my mother to sacrifice her dignity in order to secure my future?
To speak of either secret would mean the end of all things…


((to be continued…))

MishaCantu's Avatar


MishaCantu
07.03.2016 , 02:30 AM | #22
Very nice chapter Luna. Marr is having to grow up very fast and learn that there is always a price to be paid where the Sith are concerned. He always struck me as the type who learned from his experiences, mulled them over and filed them away for future reference. I guess that is what made him such a pragmatic leader and one of the few sith I admired.

Can't wait for the next.

Lunafox's Avatar


Lunafox
07.03.2016 , 03:37 PM | #23
Quote: Originally Posted by MishaCantu View Post
Very nice chapter Luna. Marr is having to grow up very fast and learn that there is always a price to be paid where the Sith are concerned. He always struck me as the type who learned from his experiences, mulled them over and filed them away for future reference. I guess that is what made him such a pragmatic leader and one of the few sith I admired.

Can't wait for the next.
Thanks Misha He's a smart quiet boy, and probably will have to grow up faster than he should. In a way I feel sorry for him. The Sith world is really harsh. But as you say, he learns from the things he sees and applies his knowledge when circumstances demand it.

Diviciacus's Avatar


Diviciacus
07.06.2016 , 10:55 AM | #24
As promised, I have come with comments and cookies. And I'm all out of cookies, sorry.

Prologue and first chapter right now; chapters two and three will be later today I think.

Nihil Caput (Latin… doesn’t really have a word for zero, so the prologue is the “nonexistent chapter.”)
Spoiler


Unum Caput
Spoiler


EDIT: hahaha, got all the review in before anyone else responded!

Secundum Caput
Spoiler


Tertium Caput
Spoiler
Nonne mei fratres congruitis nobis nostram cruore ferroque humum recipienda esse aut Imperium Aeternum quae omnia speremus peregerimusque vere perdat?
Conquering the Darkest Places, the ongoing misadventures of a Sith doing what's right by her.

Lunafox's Avatar


Lunafox
07.06.2016 , 07:55 PM | #25
Thanks for the great commentary! My answers in blue!

Quote: Originally Posted by Diviciacus View Post
As promised, I have come with comments and cookies. And I'm all out of cookies, sorry. Oh well, I'll just take your cat. He's cute.

Prologue and first chapter right now; chapters two and three will be later today I think.

Nihil Caput (Latin… doesn’t really have a word for zero, so the prologue is the “nonexistent chapter.”)
Spoiler


Unum Caput
Spoiler
Scourge dedicated a lot of himself to his visions and through them, I reckon he had an idea of how to influence the desired outcome.

EDIT: hahaha, got all the review in before anyone else responded!

Secundum Caput
Spoiler


Tertium Caput
Spoiler

Lunafox's Avatar


Lunafox
07.08.2016 , 09:25 PM | #26
Star Wars: The Old Republic
Marr

~Chapter Four~


Our mistakes define us; they are the foundation upon which all else is built, and should we fail to learn from them, we are doomed to repeating them until we do.


I boarded the shuttle for Dromund Kaas the day following my ninth birthday.

At the shuttle depot, my mother fussed with the coarse weave tunic she’d made for my departure, while my father inspected the contents of my ruck sack to ensure I hadn’t forgotten anything.

The departure carillon rang out and after a final embrace I strode up the boarding ramp. I stopped to look back at them and waved good-bye.

Together they stood, arm in arm on the platform, stoic and smiling. Outward appearances suggested that this was the greatest day of our lives, but this peculiar sensitivity I’d inherited told me otherwise. They hoped for my return but didn’t expect it. They mourned me as if I were already dead, but felt compelled to promise the next time I’d see them, it would be as a Sith.

I took a seat by the window. The tinted glass allowed me to see them, but it was unlikely they could see me. The moment I was out of sight they collapsed into each other. My mother sobbed into my father’s shoulder and I felt her heartache and remorse. I felt her regret. For as long as I could remember, she had told me that I was her world. No son, whether chosen or through blood, could expect more devotion than she had given me.

My failure to believe I could so utterly fill another’s world would be a failing that would dog me for the rest of my life, but at this moment, I understood and I believed. Her world had ended and with that despair came the understanding that her choice, for good or ill, could not be rescinded—that no matter how indirect her part had been, she had committed herself to being the benefactor or executioner of the one person she held most dear.

My father patted her back with a tepid rhythm, the motion matching the helpless look on his face, that suggested he had no clue how to console her. I wept for them both.

The academy demanded nine years of my life. The notion that I would not see my parents again for almost a decade was unfathomable, but I would soon learn that time was the least precious thing I would be expected to give up in my quest to learn the art of being Sith.

Much could happen in that time—things I was afraid to dwell upon. Would my parents be safe? Would they remember me? Would I remember them? Would I still want to?

I had heard many Sith abandon their Force-blind parents as if consorting with them would somehow diminish their power. I believed in loyalty and family. Was it possible for a school to exorcise the ideals I clung to? The prospect worried me. Would I even be aware of it, after such an absence?

Why had I agreed to this at all? Why would I want to be Sith?

Many advantages came with being Sith. I would have the power to help my family escape those who would exploit them. I would have the means to provide a proper home filled with loyal slaves and guards who would see to their every comfort in their waning years. They had saved me, and it was my intention to return that kindness.

The idea consoled me until it solidified into a goal. I would dedicate myself to my studies and achieve the most important station any Sith could attain. To make sure I never wavered in this hope, I reminded myself of it in my quieter moments. I visualized the man I wanted to be—I saw the trappings that came with being that man. I would be Sith for my family.

No matter what the academy demanded of me, I would be as fixed as a mountain forged in prehistory.

The shuttle lifted into the sky and my parents shrank until they were nothing more than two tiny stitches in the planet’s fabric.


Four days later, we had arrived. The dig site on Krayiss with its surrounding tent city and towering cliffs had impressed me. I felt small when I stood back to admire it—but I had never felt so humbled as when I emerged from the shuttle to take my first steps on Dromund Kaas.

I gawped at the monumental black spires, the tips obscured by cloud cover. Each building seemed to dare the flashing lightning to strike. Kaas City’s skyline rivaled any sunset I’d ever seen. When I looked over the side of the platform the roots of the buildings seemingly bored into the world’s core.

The rain pelted my face and I made a game of tasting as many drops as I could. They were cold and refreshing after the long shuttle ride.

A ruddy-faced boy followed me down the ramp and imitated my game. He laughed. “Bet I can catch more than you!”

He had boarded when the shuttle stopped to refuel at Hibernicus station.

“You’ll drown if you do that long enough,” the shuttle pilot taunted as he passed by.

I must have looked at him in such a way that compelled him to explain he was joking. I didn’t laugh, and I heard him mutter something to the effect of, ‘lighten up kid.’

We wandered the courtyard in front of the Sith Academy like stray nerfs. I stood with the slave born potentials and learned that the Sith born had arrived three days earlier. I caught a glimpse of my rival, Taiga Corsin strutting the grounds with his uniform and practice blade. He made a point of stopping to stare at the rag-tag band of slave borns that had arrived with me.

His entourage followed and consisted of his cronies from Krayiss as well as a few new ones he’d picked up since his arrival. They fawned over him like he was the lead singer of some holo-band. My lip furled. I hadn’t missed their presence on the trip, but I did wonder what had become of them.

“Look everyone—they’ve brought in live practice dummies for us. Dibs on that one…” Taiga called out, pointing at me. His groupies laughed and my right hand opened and closed, keen to feel the weight of the concealed saber up my sleeve. A voice—a man’s voice—whispered in my mind, “Not yet,” and I stayed my hand.

I folded my arms and glared at Taiga as if he were no more than a maggot.

Unsettled by my calm, he retreated into his entourage of uniformed raptors. As they were leaving, an aide broke their formation and took Taiga aside, while the rest dispersed. I glanced away, and the next moment Taiga and the woman had both disappeared.

“If you don’t gut that idiot, I will,” the boy behind me snarled.

Startled, I turned around and looked at him. He stared at me with bright yellow eyes that reminded me of Lord Corsin’s. Short bristled hair shadowed his skull and two dark veins bulged at his temples. I had heard whispers that he was adopted, like me, except his father worked for the Imperial Science Bureau as a biologist.

A tall shadow fell over us—that of the Overseer. He wore simple black-hooded robes and I guessed he was no older than twenty-five.

“That’s enough out of you, Veradun,” the Overseer spoke, his voice barely a whisper. He eyed me with a strange curiosity—the sort of look one gets when trying to decide if they know you or not. He stared down at his data pad and I guessed he was taking attendance.

The ruddy-faced boy from the station crept up next to me and whispered behind his hand. “I heard Veradun killed his father’s Twi’lek slave girl. Have you ever killed anyone before? I haven’t. Yet.”

The memory of the Trandoshan’s dead eyes flashed in my mind, but I couldn’t find the will to answer the boy. Bragging was something Taiga Corsin did, and I resolved long ago, that I wanted to be nothing like him. I could’ve killed a hundred Trandoshans but I would never boast of it.

Veradun glared at me, but then it seemed he glared at everyone and I wondered what sort of monster would kill a slave girl. I answered my own question—he was the sort that wanted to dominate everything and everyone. He was hostility personified and I doubted I would ever see eye to eye with him on any matter. I said nothing but instead took the measure of the other hopefuls. Most seemed distracted, excited or scared.

“You don’t say much, do you? I’m Gorton.” The boy thrust his hand at me, and I stared at it for a moment before grudgingly taking it.

“Ares.”

The Overseer crossed his arms. “You’d be wise to follow his example Gorton, or I’ll remove your tongue myself. Now listen up, I am Overseer Silthar. While you’re here, you will answer to me. I will assign your trials once and only once. If you are too stupid or distracted to hear me the first time, the jungle is that way,” he said, index finger jutting toward the west. “Perhaps you’ll be of more use in some beast’s belly or as the dung heap it leaves behind. You first trial is encrypted on your personal data pad in your quarters. The matron inside will show you the facilities. Dismissed.”

As I turned to leave, a firm grip caught my shoulder. “Except you.”

“Overseer?”

“You’re with me.”

I nodded and trailed behind the man at his elbow until we reached his office.

It occurred to me that perhaps I had been judged inadequate already or that they had reconsidered my admission to the Academy. Once inside, the doors slid shut behind us, and I stood at attention before the Overseer’s desk.

Silthar sat behind his desk and folded his hands before him. “Ares Marr…I received a transmission this morning…and it is my sad duty to inform you, that your parents Lish and Ailan Marr were killed the day before yesterday.”

My knees gave and I sat down hard in the chair behind me. We sat in silence until I worked up the courage to speak.

“What happened to them, sir?”

“Your mother and Lord Corsin were murdered…and your father was executed for their murders shortly after by camp authorities.”

“But my father—he couldn’t kill anyone…He just couldn’t.”

“I know. Regrettably, it was discovered too late, that the perpetrator was actually a bounty hunter—a human female. Security camera footage exonerated your father’s role in their deaths. Their effects will be shipped to you on the next supply shuttle.”

“They’ll never get to see me become Sith. I wanted this…for them.” My voice quavered and my vision grew thick and bleary. My knuckles cracked as my fists tightened. “I want the security footage. I want to go home…I need to see for myself.”

“It may be possible to secure a copy of the footage. I can understand your need to know and your desire to avenge them…however returning to Krayiss Two is impossible.”

“With Lord Corsin dead…I’ll be expelled. He was my patron. It’s because of him…that I’m here to learn the art of being Sith.”

“My boy...you use such unusual terms. What is it you think you’ll be taught here?”

“How to use a lightsaber…how to study artifacts and find them. How to rule and govern over worlds.”

Silthar laughed. “Forgive me…but you’ve been woefully misled. There is no artistry in death, except in the abstract. You are not here to govern or rule or dig in the dirt for trinkets…you are here to become a killer…a warrior. Your art is in bloodshed. You fight for the Empire, you die for the Empire.” He snatched the air with his fist and shook it. “Take these words to heart, they are your first and most important lesson. Peace is a lie; there is only passion. Through passion you gain strength; through strength, you gain power, through power, victory and through victory, your chains are broken.”

“Why can’t I be like Lord Corsin and study archaeology…or like you? Your office is full of ancient artifacts. How many holocrons do you have on your walls? I see at least thirty…and your weapons…under the glass there. Or the scrolls in your shelves. My father showed me things like this on Krayiss…a Sith should know their secrets. My father said, that only through history do we know who we are.”

“You are…an unusual boy, Ares. I wouldn’t have expected such passion about antiquities from someone so young. It’s rather inspiring. Most of the students your age and older are more excited by their practice sabers and combat than by knowledge. Scholars are few and far between here.” His brow furrowed. “You remind me of a man I once knew…he taught me a great many things.”

“Who was he? Was it Tulak Hord?”

“How curious…but no, not him. A story for another time perhaps. Let me assure you; you will not be expelled. I suggest you find your way to your quarters and begin decrypting the instructions for your trial. The others will have an advantage over you. When I learn more about your parents, I’ll summon you. Dismissed. Oh, and one more thing…I would advise you to keep your grief to yourself…there are those who would exploit it.”

I nodded and left Silthar’s office. No sooner had I rounded the corner, a great blur pounced on me, fists flying. My back connected with the wall and my throat grew hot and narrow. I sputtered unable to breathe. To break the connection, I brought my knee up against his gut. My attacker stumbled backward before coming at me again. It was only at this moment that his identity registered.

“I’m going to kill you, Marr. Your filthy wh.ore mother got my father killed! I should’ve killed you when I had the chance. My father is dead because of you!” Taiga snarled.

“Get off me!” I butted my head against his hard enough that my sight pr.ick.led with bright yellow stars and I felt sick.

Taiga drew his practice saber and raised it to strike. “Time to die you worthless piece of—”

The voice in my mind hissed, “Do it now!”

My lightsaber came alive in my hand and with one deft slice, Taiga’s eyes grew wide. He stumbled backward. It wasn’t until he moved that I realized the full measure of what I’d done. His torso fell first and then the rest.

Red as the blood seeping from Taiga’s body, my lightsaber growled and sputtered. I stared down at the heap at my feet and felt a presence behind me.

“That lightsaber…” Overseer Silthar hissed. “Where did you get it?”

“It’s mine…it belonged to my father…”

“Come with me. Quickly! There is no time to lose.”


((to be continued…))

MishaCantu's Avatar


MishaCantu
07.08.2016 , 10:53 PM | #27
How poignant. He continues to have the brutalities of life forced upon him and my heart does go out to this young man. I await hearing what the overseer knows about his lineage or at least his suspicions and wonder if Marr truly does have anyone at all in his camp. Can't wait for the next.

frauzet's Avatar


frauzet
07.09.2016 , 02:54 AM | #28
Quote:
I would soon learn that time was the least precious thing I would be expected to give up in my quest to learn the art of being Sith.
I am looking forward to see his training.
Author of "Trouble, Destiny and Other Complications" and the AU "Caught"
Participant of the "Short Fic Weekly Challlenge Thread!"
All my stories from TDaOC and SFWC in chronological order

Diviciacus's Avatar


Diviciacus
07.09.2016 , 11:00 AM | #29
First things first, response responses in a particular order!

-Generations was a very good film, yes!
-The scene is right after Durotan and Draka go through the Dark Portal.
-Ohh yea, I remember Liatrix having that issue with the birth of Sephna (who also, as I recall, was also a bit premature).
-Of course it is impossible to tell of rewrites through the final product, but I most excellently enjoy Marr and the way you have structured it.
-Sith lightning in the movies always was quite a bit more blue than it is in the comics or books or video games, isn't it? In Episode III when Mace Windu and Palpatine duel his lightning is blue like in ROTJ (although considerably better rendered), and even Dooku's Force lightning in Episode II was bright blue.
-I was referring to the games, actually; the first and third in the trilogy. I haven't seen the movies at all.
-Reasons for being Jedi-like I should like dearly like to know! :P
-I might have to try that centering thing for my own story. when I post the next chapter on Tuesday (you know, once I start writing it >.>)
-Lord Abaron, rather than Abbadon. That guy is going to be some fun, haha
-lol, I do that a lot too... although I haven't really used anything I've found yet, except the wood types for that one scene. (Did you know every Moff in the Sith empire except the random one that the Smuggler kills is male, according to Wookieepedia? And every Admiral too, except for Zasha "The real Butcher of Coruscant" Ranken. Why, I think there's a bit of a problem there.)
-Star Wars Hogwarts...? Sithwarts!

Commentarii for the new chapter! yay!
Quartum Caput
Spoiler
Nonne mei fratres congruitis nobis nostram cruore ferroque humum recipienda esse aut Imperium Aeternum quae omnia speremus peregerimusque vere perdat?
Conquering the Darkest Places, the ongoing misadventures of a Sith doing what's right by her.

Lunafox's Avatar


Lunafox
07.10.2016 , 12:19 AM | #30
Me in blue.

Quote: Originally Posted by Diviciacus View Post
First things first, response responses in a particular order!

-Generations was a very good film, yes!
-The scene is right after Durotan and Draka go through the Dark Portal. Ok cool, now I'll know what to watch for. Thanks
-Ohh yea, I remember Liatrix having that issue with the birth of Sephna (who also, as I recall, was also a bit premature).
-Of course it is impossible to tell of rewrites through the final product, but I most excellently enjoy Marr and the way you have structured it. I'm glad. *beams* Hearing that makes it all worthwhile.
-Sith lightning in the movies always was quite a bit more blue than it is in the comics or books or video games, isn't it? In Episode III when Mace Windu and Palpatine duel his lightning is blue like in ROTJ (although considerably better rendered), and even Dooku's Force lightning in Episode II was bright blue. I remember being surprised when the game lightning was more purple, but it still works and isn't quite as Marysuish as black lol.
-I was referring to the games, actually; the first and third in the trilogy. I haven't seen the movies at all. Ah okay, cause I just saw the movie. I do own the first game, I bought it on sale, but it never worked on my pc, so I ended up giving up on it. Have the same problem with KoToR games too.
-Reasons for being Jedi-like I should like dearly like to know! :P And you will!
-I might have to try that centering thing for my own story. when I post the next chapter on Tuesday (you know, once I start writing it >.>) Give it a shot, as I said, it's easiet if you use the "align center" icon, that you'll see just above the post box, where you compose your post. Top left, second one over.

-Lord Abaron, rather than Abbadon. That guy is going to be some fun, haha Bah, I always get that name messed up and I was too lazy to log in and verify it...that's the guy though
-lol, I do that a lot too... although I haven't really used anything I've found yet, except the wood types for that one scene. (Did you know every Moff in the Sith empire except the random one that the Smuggler kills is male, according to Wookieepedia? And every Admiral too, except for Zasha "The real Butcher of Coruscant" Ranken. Why, I think there's a bit of a problem there.) Yeah, I can see the need for a girl moff or two, it's one reason I made Captain Zimmer in SvS.
-Star Wars Hogwarts...? Sithwarts! Haha Another friend of mine thought, 'oh hey Taiga is going to be like Draco...oops nvm lol'. She didn't expect me to bump him off that quick lol.

Commentarii for the new chapter! yay!
Quartum Caput Thanks again for the wonderful well thought out responses. I'm so grateful for them. ^^
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