“You should have told me.” Turel said flatly as he and his apprentice strode in step down the empty hallway. “I could have helped you, as it is my job to do.”
“I know master.” Rod replied “I was afraid for her safety, how could I have known it was some kind of test. I thought if Sight found out she was alive he would just send someone else to kill her.”
“You’re lucky he’s given you a chance to save her now, she must actually be damn good at her job, the DIA doesn’t recruit mediocre operatives.” Turel stated.
Rod shot a glance towards his master and smirked “Well, she is my sister after all master. I guess it just runs in the family.”
“Heh. If she’s good enough for the DIA, then you must be adopted.” Turel laughed as the pair made its way down the front steps of The Citadel towards their speeder.
Space above Kessel
Rod looked across the empty transport to see his master adjusting his harness for what he counted as the fifth time.
“You know master, we could get you some happy pills to make these trips more comfortable for you.” Rod joked to the Templar.
“I have no problem with starships” Turel replied “These damn DIA pilots think they’re pod racers though.”
“Heh, they’re a hell of a lot better than some of the crack pilots we had in the Galactic Alliance.” Rod replied “Hell this one time –“
The pilot turned and cut the young Journeyman off. “Sir, the control tower is asking for a passenger manifest, should I give them false names?”
“No, that’s not necessary pilot, we’re not on a covert operation today, tell them Turel Sorenn and –“ Turel began before his apprentice cut in.
“Nicki Rodell are onboard.” Rod finished.
Turel shot a look across the ship at his apprentice as his cannons armed and locked on to fire. The look his apprentice shot back however informed the Templar that he was in no mood for any of the many clever remarks that had overtaken his mind. He decided to just save them for the ride back to Selen.
The small transport set down lightly on the empty landing pad. The pilot powered down all systems and kicked his feet up, preparing for the long wait he had ahead of him. Meanwhile, the two Dark Jedi were making their way down the exit ramp. They were greeted on the landing pad by an auburn haired Human.
“Nicki!” Darlene exclaimed as she ran over to hug her brother. Turel could barely hold back his laugh. “I wasn’t expecting you to be coming so soon, I thought it would take much longer for everything to die down.”
“Well, things have gotten a little complicated, is there somewhere we can go to talk?” Rod asked.
“Sure” Darlene replied, looking slightly concerned “Just promise you’re not going to try and kill me again, deal?”
Rod smiled at how quickly his sister was able to joke about their last meeting.
“But, before we go, who the hell is this?” Darlene asked, looking towards Turel.
“Oh, right, Darlene, meet my master, Turel Sorenn.” Rod replied.
Darlene looked at the older Human judgmentally. “You don’t look any darker then my kid brother here. What is it with you Shadow Clan people? I thought Dark Jedi were supposed to be intimidating.”
Turel was slightly taken aback, but before he could respond Darlene had turned and started making for her apartment. The spaceport was crowded, but the group made their way away from the docks and towards the residential district. Rod remembered his last trip to Kessel, an assassination mission for the DIA. He wondered how his sister would feel about that story.
Before long the trio found themselves walking down an empty and rather run down corridor of apartments. “I stayed as close to the landing pads as I could, just in case I ever needed to get off world in a hurry.” Darlene explained, seeing her brother’s look of disapproval at her new accommodations. “They don’t ask for names and pay week to week. You told me to stay off the grid remember?”
“You know Rod, I could have put her up on Nar Shadda, I still have quite a few contacts there. She could have been off the grid and living in luxury if you had asked for help.” Turel half stated half scolded. Rod simply rolled his eyes in reply.
Darlene approached a door, the only door in the corridor with a keypad lock. She quickly punched in the pin, which was followed by a prompt for a voice print code. “Nicolai” She stated calmly. The door slid open with a hiss, and the three humans stepped inside.
Rod and Turel sat at a small table while Darlene poured them drinks. Rod fumbled through his pockets, finally finding his pack of cigarettes. “Mind if I smoke in here sis?” Rod asked as he lit his cigarette without waiting for a response.
“You grunts and your cigarettes” Darlene replied “You know if you had attended the officer academy…”
“Hold it right there, you and I both know I’m not the officer type. Too much politics, I liked to kill, not debate.” Rod responded as he took a long drag of the cigarette.
Turel shot a glance towards his apprentice, a subtle reminder that they were here on a mission, not a pleasure call.
“So sis, like I was saying back at the landing pad, things have gotten a little complicated.” Rod explained as his sister approached the table with the drinks. She put a glass in front of Rod and Turel then took a seat herself.
“The people I work for, the DIA, have learned of my failure to kill you.” Rod began “So, they sent me back. However, my mission has changed. I’m here now not to kill you, but to recruit you.”
Darlene looked at her brother as if he had grown a second head.
“Let’s get this straight, you want me to work for the people who sent my own brother to assassinate me? Thanks for the great offer, but no thanks.” Darlene replied.
“I can assure you ma’am, we are not all as cruel as the man who sent Rod to kill you.” Turel interjected “In fact, he was never meant to kill you at all, it was simply a test of his loyalty to the clan.”
“Some test, what would have happened if he killed me?” Darlene asked.
“His tail would have made short work of him.” Turel replied.
“Exactly, that sounds like an excellent employer.” Darlene retorted.
“Speaking of tails” Rod said, rejoining the conversation as he put out his cigarette “I’m sure we have one here with us today. Likely with orders to kill the both of us should I fail to recruit you or try to send you back into hiding.”
“You know little brother, you really manage to put me into the most awkward situations.” Darlene replied. “What would I be doing for your “Shadow Clan” anyway?”
“The same thing you did in the Army. You’d be an intelligence analyst working with the Dajorra Intelligence Agency, a branch of the Arconan Armed Forces, a group tasked with the defense of the Dajorra system.” Turel replied from a place of experience and honesty.
Darlene became silent, apparently considering her options. Finally, after a long pause, she spoke.
“These people, the ones who live in the Dajorra system, are they all like you? Are they all Dark Jedi?” She asked.
Rod could see where his sister was going, and he knew they almost had her “No, they’re just regular people, they vast majority have no idea the Shadow Clan even exists.”
Darlene paused again, mulling over her thoughts, and at last she looked up at her brother. Rod could tell from the look in her eyes what she had decided. He pressed a small button on his communicator.
“Pilot, prepare the ship, we’re heading back to Selen. And we’ll have another passenger this time.”