A read-only archive of discourse.darkjedibrotherhood.com as of Sunday May 01, 2022.

[GJW XI] Clan Arcona: Team Princess


Team Princess

Griever #1612
Celevon Edraven #12004
Mako Henymory #7640
Turel Sorenn #13830
Rhiann Bearne #13774
Nikola “Rod” Roddell #14052


Teams must have a minimum of 4 participants, and a maximum of 6. For a team to qualify for placement, all posts must meet requirements in these rules and all members of the team must meet post number requirements. However, for participation alone, any individual meeting minimum post requirements will count towards his or her unit.
Any member posting twice in a row will disqualify his team from placing - but not participation credit (e.g. if an entire team is dead, Johnny McDarthman can post twice in a row to get his own participation at the end of the event)
Members must make 3 posts throughout the duration of the Run-On
Posts must meet the following requirements:
Minimum post length: 250 +/- 10 words words.
Maximum post length: 2000 +/- 10 words.
Points from placement are awarded to the unit of the placing team,
irrespective of number of members on each team. E.g. if CNS Team A takes first place, and first place is worth 50 pts (example only), CNS gets 50 points, regardless of number of members on the team.
Edits may occur on a post until a follow on post has been made (follow on posts include “reserving” a space). Edits may only be made by the posts original author (as in, if you have Forum Administration Rights, you cannot edit another member’s work).
Members may reserve post, but no posts can occur until after the reserved post is written.
Judging will follow the Fiction Rubric.


Civil War has befallen the Brotherhood. The Clans have split into three factions: the Loyalists, who have rallied behind Grand Master Ashen; the Rebels, following the banner of Jac Cotelin; and the New Order, led by the mysterious Sith Lord Esoteric. Each faction has stormed the surface of Korriban, establishing impressive fortifications and moving towards the Valley of the Dark Lords. Loyalists, Rebels, and the New Order clash across Korriban’s surface, all three attempting to gain control of the Valley of Dark Lords and the secrets it holds.

The Valley of Dark Lords has erupted in carnage, forces from every unit in the Brotherhood streaming into the ruins and temples, establishing makeshift defensive positions behind virtually every wall. Blood is spilled over every inch, each of the three sides gambling the lives of thousands of Jedi in an attempt to put an end to this conflict once and for all. The Loyalists, following Ashen’s command, seek to break through to the Tomb of Marka Ragnos, where the Disciples of Ragnos once sealed a chamber with writings on the Rite of Immortality. To open it, Ashen has sent three of his most skilled advisors in ancient dark rites and alchemy, but the way is not yet safe or clear for them, as the One Sith were originally entrenched in the Valley and still maintain a strong control over most of the area. Esoteric’s forces have a base of operations at the Tomb of Ajunta Pall, a fortified location that allows them a great deal of mobility throughout the Valley, which they use to harass any operations by the other two sides. The Adept Dantella Novae reluctantly commands Esoteric’s forces in the region, though she seems more interested in stealing the secrets of Marka Ragnos than in defending the Valley itself. Cotelin is seeking to contain and control whatever the Tomb of Marka Ragnos holds, through any means necessary… and before Ashen’s forces can reach it.

You and your team have found yourselves just outside one of the few entrances to the Valley of the Dark Lords. You know that inside the Valley, death and destruction have overtaken the ruins, but you also know that ultimately, victory for one side of the other is likely to come within the walls of the ancient tombs.

Your runon should detail the battle within the Valley, and must illustrate (either through success or failure) at least one of the sides in the conflict - this will play a major role in your Story grade.


The engines of the AIC hummed beneath their booted feet. It had already breached atmosphere, and above the grind of mechanics delivering them into the warzone and the howl of the wind tearing around the boxy little drop ship, explosions could be heard. Distant, almost rhythmic detonations gave the cacophony of background noise a bass undertone. Above that, from the cockpit, the occupants could hear the treble, scratchy, frenetic reports over the comlink. Celevon sat with his head back, resting against the bulkhead, staring up at the red light which flickered when the AIC banked too hard. His booted toe tapped along to an imaginary beat, as if it was music they were all listening to; not the sound of a battle in full swing, with hundreds of thousands of lives in the balance.

Turel stood near the front of the craft, one hand holding the rail above his head, his other was braced against the door frame, leaning to see over the crew’s heads, watching the repeater displays. He was officially the small group’s leader, and had been tasked by Marick to establish a foothold in the Valley of The Dark Lords. From what he’d understood of the mission brief, the Valley of the Dark Lords was currently where you went if you had a particularly strong urge to die. A war on three fronts. It was not going to be easy, pretty, or even remotely safe. There was a large chance that the team he’d been given wouldn’t all make it out alive.

Mako was hunched over a datapad, a stylus poking out of his lips as he muttered to himself, presumably writing poetry. Turel’s lip quirked in amusement, but he swallowed the comment before voicing it; undermining his subordinates a strong team would not make. Rod, the Journeyman of their little venture, was checking his weaponry almost religiously, and outwardly appeared calm, but the Quaestor had seen many of his type before; a young soldier who bought into the glorious ideal of war, only to have his first few forays crush that polished dream. Now, he was disillusioned and merely wondering if he’d make it out of the Valley alive.


Last but not least was Rhiann. The willowy woman sat next to Celevon, and despite appearing engrossed in her own datapad, flickering the jeweled stylus over it with the odd flourish, she did spare a scathing look at the assassin next to her - more specifically, his boot. Celevon’s tapping bothered her. He didn’t stop.

The AIC listed hard to the left, and Turel’s wrist strained holding him upright. The others, strapped in as they were, didn’t lose their balance, but a few exchanged alarmed glances.

“What was that?” He demanded to the cockpit’s crew.

“Birdstrike, sir. One of our engines is out.”

Turel ran a hand over his face in frustration. They’d managed to dodge innumerable ballistics and got to within a few hundred feet from the planet’s surface when a rodding avian took them out.


“Can we make it to the ground?”

“Oh, that part will definitely happen, Sir. I’ll try to get as low as I can. When the light goes green, jump.”

Turel turned to the others, and without a word began shouldering on a jetpack. They immediately got up and did the same. A tense few seconds followed, with the craft’s engine tone sounding gradually more and more strained. The bay doors opened, blasting them with hot, dusty air which whipped stray debris in the cabin around like a miniature cyclone. The Quaestor took the first position and stared out of the doors at the battle below. It was mostly obscured by a thick cloud of dust kicked up from thousands of feet churning the previously-undisturbed ground, but there was the odd muted flash, and somewhere a blast of lightning shot up from the melee, framing the sky in blue brilliance.

The AIC started leaning heavily, banking away from the battle. Turel’s eyes focused on a pair of individuals barely visible on a rocky outcropping, partially sheltered by a boulder. There was a flash of light, a cloud, and a black speck shot up towards them - a missile.

“Incoming!” He bellowed, but the pilots couldn’t hear him over the wind and the engines.

“Out! Out! Out! He shouted at his team, virtually shoving Celevon out of the door as he stood up. Rod went next, then Mako then Rhiann. With a last look at the interior, at all the mission-essential kit they were leaving behind, he threw himself out, and was taken by the wind. Above, the AIC exploded spectacularly as the chip tore through the open hatch. All their carefully-packed ordnance went up, causing the ship to swell like a water balloon for an instant before the explosion ripped it apart, scattering the sky with burning shrapnel. The Quaestor turned to face the cloud of dust rapidly coming up to approach him. It’d be near-impossible to see when it was safe to activate the jetpack in that mess, where visibility was limited to a few feet.

Grimacing, Turel dipped deeply into the Force and closed his eyes. His senses were obliterated by a miasma of pain, rage, and even joy coursing through the valley. Shoving it to one side, he focused on prescience. A hint, anything that would tell him-


He stabbed the activator stud, and the pack flared to life, righting him, and halting his momentum enough to not become yet another casualty in the conflict. The landing was rougher than he expected. The former gangster collapsed in a pile of limbs, swearing to himself. He sat up, then scrambled into a crouch, trying to look everywhere at once whilst simultaneously shrugging off the jet-pack. It wasn’t easy. He had to locate his team. All seemed quiet for the most part, though the dust was cloying and stung his eyes. He grasped the Force once more and felt out around him. It wasn’t hard to pick up the others. They were all alive and within a hundred meters. Turel set off towards Rod, who would need protection the most, and mentally nudged the others. They took the hint.

Within a few minutes, they were crouched in a small circle, looking windswept and wide-eyed, but alive.

“Where are we?” Celevon asked, looking up, as if trying to pierce the fog and pick out the sky.

“Judging from the dust and Dark Jedi trying to kill us, I’ll venture a guess and say Korriban.” Turel responded, his lips twisting into a wry smile.

Most of the others simply rolled their eyes at the attempt to lighten their moods with humour, but Celevon cracked the ghost of a smile. He appreciated the effort, at least.

“We need to get to higher ground so we can see what we’re doing, and where we are. From there, we can maybe plan an approach to the temple.”

A rock clapped against what sounded like the sheer valley wall, and the team moved as one. Turel and Rod immediately brought up their pistols and took aim in the direction of the sound, whilst the others, who favoured close combat, moved to cover. Rhiann, however, pulled out her datapad and frantically started tapping at its screen.

“Three life forms. Twenty meters due east. Can’t discern who they are with, but there is no vehicles supporting them.” She reported crisply.

Turel nodded his thanks, then gestured to Celevon and Mako, who started moving east, down the small valley path. There were a pair of gurgles a moment later, followed by the sound a cat makes when stood on. Rhiann flinched, but didn’t move any further.

“Clear!” Mako’s voice echoed through the valley.

Rod, Turel and Rhiann approached, to find the pair of duelists cleaning their blades of blood. Two soldiers and what appeared to be a Squib jedi were dead at their feet, having never gotten a shot off. The two troops bore Odan Urr livery.

“Good work.” He clapped Mako on the shoulder, but the Rollmaster flinched back from the touch. Clearly, he wasn’t used to such camaraderie.

That’ll need to change.

“Turel, that sound we heard before which alerted us…”

The Quaestor turned to Rhiann, who was staring at the valley wall. The dust had thinned considerably as they moved deeper into the narrow pass. Above them, it swept like an angry demon, or vultures circling.

“What’s wrong?”

She gestured at a fresh mark on the wall. A chip. “This is the mark stone makes when hit against stone of the same type. And here,” The Magistrate pointed at two fractured stones lying amidst the dust. They seemed strangely out of place, and a subtly different colour. “This stone split in two when it struck the wall. Who throws rocks when they are sneaking up on unknown antagonists?”

She was right. It didn’t make sense. Why would they give themselves away like that?

“We’ll watch our backs. I don’t like it anymore than you do, but we have to focus and keep moving. Celevon, find us a way to higher ground.”


Celevon nodded in acknowledgement and crept further down the valley path to search for a way up. The Aedile moved from cover to cover as smoothly and silently as a passing shadow. Few witnessed a Shadicar ply his craft and lived to tell the tale.

With Celevon scouting ahead, the rest of the team resumed taking stock of their situation. Rhiann sat with her back against a large rock and pulled out her datapad, attempting to break into the enemy command networks. The hastily assembled factions in this three-way battle had little time to establish new security protocols. Turel and Mako crouched down facing opposite directions along the valley path to watch for movement.

Turel’s attention was diverted to a rustling noise he heard behind him. The Quaestor stole a glance to the rear to see Rod searching the enemy dead; As distasteful as rummaging through bloody uniforms and gear was, it was the tactical thing to do. The team had been forced to jump from their landing craft without most of their gear. They needed any and all supplies they could get their hands on. The enemy scouts could also have intelligence on them.

The cold calculus of battlefield necessity didn’t ease Turel’s mind as a dead Jedi and two of Odan-Urr’s rangers lay behind him. He didn’t recognize any of them, but he still felt uneasy at the thought that mere months ago he would have counted them as comrades and in all likelihood led them into battle as Knight-Commander of the Knights of Allusis. He couldn’t help but notice how utterly unphased Rhiann was at the prospect of killing her former comrades.

Turel turned back toward Rod, “Find anything useful?”

Rod had arranged the enemy’s gear into piles at the feet of their respective, deceased, former owners. “Two E-11s, one radio, some water, field rations and an armory saber. Nothing of intelligence value.”

An armory saber? The Squib must have been a mere Padawan.

Turel shook his head and sighed audibly as he returned to watching the path for Celevon’s return. Picking up on Turel’s discomfort, Mako turned to coldly inquire, “Old friends of yours?”

“No. It’s just that-” Turel sentence was cut short by the ranger’s radio cackling to life with a male voice.

“Delta two, come in delta two. Status report over.”

Rhiann began tapping furiously on her datapad as she honed in on the source of the transmission. Rod picked up the radio as the same call repeated.

“Delta two, status report over.”

“Should I answer them Master?” Rod inquired.

“Yes, tell them-” Turel paused for a moment as he remembered Odan-Urr communication protocol. “Respond to call sign ‘Kota base’ and tell them sector is quiet.”

Rod did as he was instructed, “Kota base this is Delta two, nothing to report in sector.”

The caller on the radio didn’t hesitate, “Delta two, what of the landing craft crash?”

“No survivors.”

“Wait one Delta two.”

Rod lowered the radio. “You think they bought it?”

Rhiann muttered something under her breath about burst encryption as she continued to peck furiously at her datapad. Turel just shrugged.

The radio keyed up again with a familiar sounding, deep, thickly accented female voice, “Delta two, this is Kota actual. Authenticate challenge gamma.”

Rhiann looked up from her datapad. “It’s Vorsa.”


Turel swore under his breath for a moment. “Yep, we’re busted.”

“Who’s Vorsa?”

“You should probably respond with something,” Mako interjected in a matter of fact tone.

Turel stood up. “Doesn’t matter, she’s about to send a larger patrol down our throats any second. We have to get out of here now!”

Rod raised his hand to signal everyone to stop. “I got this Master, hang on.” He keyed up the radio making fake static noises with his mouth as best he could. “Say again Kota acu-SHHH-You’re breakin-SHHH-communication problems-SHHH-will call when-SHHHH.”

The Quaestor closed his eyes and rubbed his temples with his right hand. “Did you seriously just try the fake static with your mouth routine?” Rod simply shrugged. In the Jedi Hunter’s defense, any response was better than no response at that point. The group waited with baited breath for a response.

“Stand fast Delta Two. All units initiate communication protocol bravo.”

Rod stood confused. “What does that mean?”

Rhiann and Turel exchanged a glance before the Sephi put her datapad down and stood up. “It means they know the communication frequency has been compromised.” She moved to take the radio from the Jedi Hunter. “I can use this even if they switch frequencies.”

Turel quickly gathered up some of the ranger’s rations and a canteen of water and moved back toward the path motioning the rest to follow. “I guarantee the ‘hold fast’ thing was a ruse, there’s probably a whole platoon or a walker headed this way. We have to go now! We’ll catch up with Celevon.”

The Sith Jedi Hunter threw both his hands up in confusion. “Hold up, who is this Vorsa person and how do you know what she is going to do?”

“Vorsa is the Odan-Urr Rollmaster and a General of their armed forces. She trained Turel,” Rhiann stated as flatly as if she were announcing the time. Mako cocked an eyebrow as he catalogued that key bit of information for later.

Rod gathered up one of the E-11s along with the remaining rations and water before taking his place behind Turel. “So… this Vorsa was your master or something?”

“Not officially, but she might as well have been. My ‘official’ master and I didn’t see eye to eye.”

The Jedi Hunter shrugged. “So, your old lightie master is after us? I don’t see the big deal. Jedi are weak.”

Turel turned back to his apprentice with just a hint of anger flashing across his scarred face. “The big deal is that Vorsa is a Neti with over three centuries experience as a Jedi General. I’ve seen her take a small force of natives armed with nothing but bows and blunt weapons and defeat trained mercenaries with heavy weapons. I’d rather take my chances against Jac.” The Templar’s gaze narrowed on his apprentice. “I’ve taught you better than that; underestimate a Jedi at your own peril.”

“Yes, Master.” Rod replied with just a hint of defiance.

Satisfied, Turel turned around to resume watching the path only to find Celevon had been standing silently behind him almost close enough to touch. The Quaestor jumped reflexively, very nearly soiling his underarmor but managed to stop himself from yelling out an expletive. He took a moment to regain his composure before replying. He just knew Celevon was grinning under the cloth covering his mouth. Rod snickered quietly behind him.

Curse these kriffing Shadicar spook types!

“Oh, you’re back. Did you find a way to higher ground?”


The Onderonian raised an eyebrow in response to the slight glare from his Quaestor. “I found a rock face out of sight about half a klick due east. The stone is less brittle and has better hand-holds for climbing. Everything else is within view of our enemies.”

“Aren’t there any easier methods to get to higher ground?” Rodell queried, still sounding indignant over the admonishment from his Master.

“Negative. They’re either too steep or the material is too brittle. We don’t want to give away our position with a rockslide,” Celevon deadpanned, patting the pockets of his robes absently. “Did the bodies have any cigarettes on them? Mine got crushed with our… landing.”

“Our position may have already been compromised. A certain apprentice of mine attempted the mouth static routine,” Turel pointed out, narrowing his eyes at the Sith. The Jedi Hunter was pulling a pack out of his pocket. “No time for a smoke. We need to get moving before Vorsa sends reinforcements to investigate that patrol.”

“In that case, follow me.”

As the group made their way from cover to cover, the Quaestor took a moment to question the Shadicar. “I notice that you didn’t question as to whom Vorsa was.”

Celevon gave the older male a long look as Rhiann caught up to them, moving to the next spot of cover at the prompting from the Sith. Once they were both to the next boulder, he replied. “I overheard your explanation to your apprentice and did not feel the need to make you reiterate your explanation.”

Turel blinked, idly wondering how long the Prelate had stood behind him. “And your opinion?”

As they approached the rock face the Onderonian had spoke of, the Quaestor wondered if Celevon had heard his question.

“I would consider anyone with over a century of experience a worthy adversary. A Jedi General only increases that viewpoint,” the Aedile replied blandly. “Well, what are you lot waiting for? Baenre, Rodell, Sorenn, get climbing. Henymory and myself will provide cover from here.”

“You’re lucky we’re in a hurry,” Turel snarked with a challenging glare, moving to start climbing with the other two.

“You were taking too long. I just knocked out the middle-man.”

The former Knight-Commander gritted his teeth, somehow knowing that the Shadicar bore a smirk beneath the cloth that covered Celevon’s lower face.

The lone Krath closed his eyes, using the currents of the Force to extend his senses beyond their immediate surroundings. His grasp upon the hilt within his right hand tightened without conscious thought as he detected a number of wary presences headed in their direction. “Eleven tangos headed our way. One Foxtrot Uniform, the rest Mundanes.”*

The Onderonian immediately glanced behind him to the three others in their team. He blinked as he realized Rhiann had already made her way to the top. The other two were almost between the midway point and the top. He tapped the comlms unit in his ear, thankful that they had put them on and tested long before boarding the transport.

“Heads up, you three. We’ve got eleven tangos incoming.”

He spotted a gesture of understanding from the Sephi and two nods from the Master and Apprentice still focused on climbing.

“Anything else you can tell me about them?” the Prelate murmured as he pivoted, facing the direction Mako was focused upon.

“The Foxtrot Uniform is projecting concern for his apprentice, which I’m assuming is the Padawan growing cold back there,” the DIA Operative replied softly, not needing to gesture towards the cooling corpses they had eliminated not long before. “By power level alone… I would guess a Knight.”

“And the Mundanes?”

“If I’m understanding their thoughts and their military is similar to ours… It’s a squad of Heavy Troops.”


Static echoed in both of their ears for a moment before Turel’s voice came over their communications. “We’re in position, over.”

“Good. They will be rounding the corner shortly. I don’t think they will take kindly to our presence,” Mako replied dryly. “Over.”

“Right. Flanking seems to be the best bet. Do you think the two of you can manage to get behind them?”

“That won’t be a problem with the Mundanes. It’s the Foxtrot Uniform that may detect our presence.” The Onderonian ignored the stoic stare of the Rollmaster.

“As soon as they’re where I want them, I’ll fire a shot. That’s when we unleash hell.”

“Roger that, Lead. Moving to position.”

“How do you plan to keep us out of sight?”

The Shadicar smirked beneath the cloth and placed a palm on the Krath’s shoulder, already beginning to weave Force energy around himself. “I don’t know about you, but it tends to help when you simply do not appear to be there. Find a good piece of cover.”

The Onderonian faded from view, a glimmer of movement the only indication of his motion until he vanished completely near a far wall. Henymory looked more annoyed than usual, though he did go find somewhere to remain out of sight.

Several minutes passed before they caught sight of the enemy troops. They were, indeed, HOU infantry. Celevon felt the blood hum in his veins, adrenaline beginning to flow as the Heavy troopers walked past him.

All that was left was the signal to unleash themselves upon the enemy.

  • Foxtrot Uniform - Arconan Military Slang for Force User
  • Mundane - Celevon’s term for Non-Force Users

The Onderonian’s eyes narrowed as he watched the patrol slowly make their way past him. The young Jedi Knight leading them seemed to have no inclination towards the presence of the two hidden equites

As the Jedi at the center of the squad came into line with the Shadicar his hand shifted down to the lightsaber hilt on his hip. His knees bent ever so slightly as he prepared to rush into battle. Just as he reached his hand up to his communicator to signal the attack, he felt it.

The young Jedi had no time to react as the cyan blade snapped to life and slid through her small frame. The HOU soldiers surrounding her scattered as a cloaked figured materialized seemingly out of thin air in front of their fallen leader.

The man stood at an average height, his saber held in his left hand. He wore a thin armour that highlighted his athletic physique. Beneath the cloak over his head was a mask covering the bottom half of his face. Above the mask sat a pair or well-worn goggles, slightly dusted over from the sand filled wind. The man slowly removed his blade from the Jedi’s body and watched as it lifelessly collapsed to the ground.

Celevon and Mako held their ground, confused as to who this mysterious figure was. The Shadicar could feel a strangely familiar presence in the Force emanating from him, however he was not certain whether he was a friend or foe. On the ridge above, the three other Arconans watched on, just as confused as their comrades below.

As the shock began to fade, the troopers broke out of their formation and scattered. They broke up into two-man teams and took aim at the Dark Jedi, who slowly began to raise his saber above his head in preparation. After a few seconds of tension, one of the soldiers bellowed out the order.


The cyan blade flowed in a whirlwind with the precision of a master of his craft. The Equites all could not help but admire the man’s skill, while the Jedi Hunter’s lower jaw simply fell ever so slightly. Most of the troopers we’re so terrified that their shots went no where near the cloaked man. The one’s that were unlucky enough to shoot on target found their blaster bolts effortlessly reflected back at them with efficient parries. The man’s blade seemed to move instinctively from one bolt to the next. One by one the ten troopers dropped, until only a single private remained.

Realizing he was now alone, the young trooper took off in a dead sprint down the canyon, desperately trying to stay alive. In an impressive display of speed, the cloaked figure closed the distance between himself and the lone soldier. He raised the hilt of his saber to his right shoulder and with a swift swipe the soldier lost both of his legs just below the knees.

The Dark Jedi then positioned his cyan blade an inch off the left side of the soldier’s neck.

“Where is your base?” The man demanded, his voice sounded strange, it was clearly being filtered in some way.

The soldier simply continued to scream, still focused on the pain of losing his legs. The Dark Jedi gave him a hard kick in the groin to bring him back to the here and now.

“Answer me, now.” He demanded again.

“It’s a few clicks west of the Tomb of Marka Ragnos, towards the end of this canyon.” The soldier spat out, now focused on an entirely new realm of pain.

With a quick flick of his blade, the cloaked figure decapitated the poor soul.

“You can come out now Arconans, I mean you no harm.”

Celevon and Mako cautiously slid out of the shadows, their hands not far from their blades. Turel nudged his apprentice and nodded at Rhiann, who began tapping away at her datapad trying to get any information she could on the man as the other two took aim. The tension rose as the DIA operative and Aedile reached striking distance. Celevon was the first to speak.

“Who are you?” He queried.

“An ally,” The man replied.

The Onderonian could not make out an undertone in the man’s voice, but he had a strange feeling that he was slightly annoyed by the question. The Aedile felt a strange familiarity with the figure in front of him, but the source of it escaped him.

“We’re wasting time, they’ll come looking for these men, and we now know where Sorenn’s Jedi friend is hiding out.” Mako finally spoke after a few seconds of tense silence.

The man said nothing as he walked towards the rock face and began to climb. Mako and Celevon exchanged a brief look of understanding before they began to follow. If the stranger made any false moves, they would strike immediately.


The Priest reached up, grabbing the top ledge of the cliff as he blinked some sweat out of his eyes. Edraven reached down and offered a hand to the Rollmaster, whom took it after a moment of consideration. The desert was no place for any of them to be using more energy than necessary, and the Obelisk’s help, while unneeded, was welcome. A few paces from the edge the Sephi busily tapped away at her datapad, a wire ran from the tablet into a communication transmitter on her hip which allowed her a broader use of the device.

As Turel and Celevon approached the stranger, Mako moved himself to stand next to Rhiann.

“You able to get a current orbital image of the area with that?” The Coruscanti asked the woman, his cold tone sending a shiver down her spine for but a moment.

“Yes, but should you not be finding out about him?” Baenre asked, not yet sure yet how to take Henymory.

“Probably, though I doubt that man is our enemy. Something about him seems…” The Krath paused for a moment to consider his words carefully. “…familiar, his stride, the way he carries himself. I can’t put my finger on it, but I know I have read a file on him somewhere in the DIA database before. Anyways we should get our bearings, we still have a mission to complete.”

The Sephi smirked slightly as her thin fingers flew over the datapad’s controls. A few quiet dings and beeps issued from the communication device on her hip then the screen of the device went black for a moment as the display image changed of an overhead map of their area.

“Current map on file. This was taken fifteen minutes ago as the Invicta passed overhead,” a tinge of pride dotted the woman’s voice as Mako took in her handwork. The Krath barely noticed her words though as his emerald gaze scanned the image, mentally comparing each part to their current surroundings.

“This here, would you say that looks like an anti-air battery?” The Rollmaster asked as he pointed at a discolored part of the image. Rhiann nodded once and her fingers flew over the device once more. A copy of the spot separated from the orbital image and attached itself to one side of the screen before zooming in, the pixelation blurred the result for but a moment before the Obelisk’s program focused and refined the new image.

“I would definitely say that is anti-air,” the woman said with another nod.

“We should be here,” The Priest pointed to where the cliff sat on the screen, then traced his finger in a line towards the Tomb’s location. “That is where we need to go. Can you find all of the anti-air batteries between here and there, and locate the Odan-Urr Forward Operating Base a few kilometers to the Tomb’s west?” Mako didn’t wait for the Sephi to nod before continuing. “Make an overlay with a route that takes us by those enemy positions, we need to clear them out before getting to our target.”

“I suppose, but it will take a few minutes,” Rhiann replied, her fingers already manipulating the device.

“That’s fine. Get that done while I go find out what the others are saying to that stranger.”

Mako approached the rest of the team, his pale ears perking up under his midnight hair. Their tones denoted that of mistrust and confusion, though a few spoke in defence to the mistrust.

“Celevon, all we know about this individual is that he said his name is Griever and he is an ally,” Rod spat forth as he eyed the stranger up and down.

“If that is all you can discern about this individual then you are blind Nicolai,” the Rollmaster said as he came to a stop beside the Elder. The Priest’s emerald eyes seeming to bore through the Jedi Hunter’s skull and see into his mind.

“What do you see then, Mako?” Turel retorted as he took the offensive to support his student.

“I see an individual that seems to have more power than the rest of us combined. He used it to not only take down our enemies but to gain valuable intelligence for us. He quite obviously has more loyalty to our cause than you do yourself Quaestor,” The Krath replied his penetrating gaze shifting to Sorenn.

“Are you questioning my loyalty?”

“No I am questioning if you should be an Arconan leader while quite frankly you still see yourself as a member of Odan-Urr,” Mako verbally pushed, his tone cold, calm, and collected. The Quaestor blinked dumbfounded for but a moment. Griever raised an eyebrow as he listened to the internal struggle of the team.

“That’s absurd! I’ve shed blood for Arcona, on Nicht Ka, in defense of Selen; I have shown nothing but loyalty to our cause, you just recently arrived to our clan, how can we trust you?”

“I spent a decade working for the furtherment of Arcona, if I was not loyal to the Clan I would have stayed on Empress Teta.”

“You do seem overly concerned for the members of Odan-Urr,” Celevon interjected coming to Mako’s aid.

“You too, Celevon?” Sorenn asked a hurt tone in his voice. The Shadicar simply shrugged in reply.

“You do remember that they stood silent while others called for your execution. If it wasn’t for Arcona you would have died as a Jedi sacrifice to calm the masses of their planet. To this day you are a wanted man on New Tython with Liam’s signature endorsing the warrant for your capture and subsequent execution,” the Priest said driving home his point. Turel’s lips drew tight as the Priest’s words, and their truth, hit him as a missile does a starfighter.

Before either man could continue with their debate, Rhiann’s voice chimed up from near them. “He is right, Turel. They left you in that prison to die. Also, I finished the map overlay.”

“We should get moving; we still have a mission to complete,” the Quaestor spoke his eyes locked on the Rollmaster.

“Agreed, we found some anti-air artillery close by and on the way to our target,” Mako replied.

“Then let’s move out. We have ground to cover and a route to secure,” Turel spoke with a wave of his hand, the Dark Jedi gathered their things and fell into formation behind Rhiann.

“Griever, you can come with us, but we will be watching you,” the Quaestor spoke to the stranger as he took a place in formation.

“And so we have become as a reaper, thirsty for the kill,” the DIA operative said as he fell in behind Turel. “I will have my eyes on you as well.”


“It is still a touchy subject, yes?”

Rhiann wasn’t one to speak up often when not prompted, but with Turel being one of the closer people to her, this seemed like a subject that needed addressing. She could see he was sticking close by her and away from the others whenever she looked up from her datapad; it was as if he was trying to put distance between himself and the Sephi and the remainder of the group.

“What is?” He asked in a blunt manner.

Glancing back, the woman of the group checked to see how far away the others were before elaborating.
“Odan-Urr. What they did to you. That we have to face them in the war.”

The scenery continued on and on as the group walked. Without the help of the datapad and periodically updating maps from the Invicta, the scout team was likely to get lost among the same old boring browns and rocks that looked the exact same every time eyes looked up upon them. The Sephi’s nose wrinkled as she caught the butt end of a joke, looking back to Turel afterward.

There was silence between the two of them as the answer was being waited upon, the laughter of the rest of their group breaking it. Seems the joke was a hit.

“You don’t mind being on the opposite side of the battlefield?” Turel instead asked, avoiding answering the question.
The datapad in Rhiann’s hands beeped as it updated their position.

“Not at all. I can understand why you hesitate, though, “ She said, further elaborating, “As for me; I have no connection to any of them. In fact, I would gladly lob off a few of their heads.”

Turel’s eyebrows quirked in both curiosity and surprise. He knew Rhiann left Odan-Urr due to some less than desired relationships between herself and some Jedi, but he never expected her to say something like that so casually.
“Are we there yet?” A voice suddenly said from the group behind, Rod repeating it once again, “Are we there yet?!”
With a sigh, the one leading the group replied, “I will tell you when we are. Stop giving our position away with your shouting. Voices echo on rocks if you are not careful.”

There was a collective sigh from the three men trailing along, the techy of the group’s eyes looking back down to the datapad’s screen as they continued to walk along. Things were silent again until the Quaestor spoke up.

“Vorsa was my–” He started to say, getting cut off.

The sentence was finished by Rhi, “Real master. And now she leads the army. You worry about having to face her and cut her down.”

Turel nodded.

In a matter of fact tone, the Sephi spoke again, “This is war, Turel. I was not even raised in situations like this, and I know what I must do. You know if you were to face her… or anyone from Odan-Urr for that matter, you are expected to cut them down and continue along.”

Lifting her head, she looked at the man she could easily call a brother. There was a flash of sadness on her face, it quickly replaced by one of concentration.

“Everyone stands to lose someone important to them here among the rocks and sands,” she muttered, “But you have to remember they are also doing what is expected of them. And that is tearing down the opposition… even if we were once friends.”

Tired of being left behind, Rod trotted up to catch up with Rhiann and his master. While up there, he took a peek at the datapad. His mouth opened and a breath sucked in when the woman’s black eyes shot a glare at him.

“Yes. We are here.”

Stopping, the group converged behind a large rock formation some few hundred feet away from the anti-air battery and troops guarding it. Crouching down, Rhiann leaned back against the rocks and set the device on her knees, using her fingers to zoom in to their area. Looking back up once it was set up, the female Obelisk looked between the men around her.

“Suggestions, anyone?”


“We need to figure out what we’re up against,” Mako stated the obvious.

“Way ahead of you, Agent Grumpy,” Turel quipped to the Rollmaster as he unslung his Karpaky Fifty slugthrower rifle and took up a prone position at the crest of the rock to observe the enemy position. “Rod, get up here. I need a spotter.” The Jedi Hunter pulled a tiny pair of macrobinoculars from a pouch on his belt and dutifully took up a prone position next to his master. The DIA Operative remained stoic in an effort to not dignify a response to the Quaestor’s quip.

A cool evening breeze brought some relief from the desert heat of the day, but did kick up small amounts of sand with it. A few tense moments clicked by as Turel and Rod studied the enemy position. Rhiann continued to review orbital imagery on her datapad while Mako and Celevon checked their flanks for enemy patrols. Griever stood to the outskirts of the group, quietly observing his comrades who for the most part forgot he was there.

“So what do you see, my apprentice?” Turel inquired using his ‘teaching voice.’

Without breaking his gaze through the macrobinoculars, the Sith replied absently, “An enemy fighting position erected around two stationary AT-AAs with roughly a platoon sized element of light infantry in textbook improved fighting positions. Two to three AT-XTs patrolling the outer perimeter.”

“Which unit occupies the position?” The master inquired of his apprentice, clearly already knowing the answer.

“All the units bear the marking of House Scholae Palantinae.”

“Very good my apprentice, the Force is with us for this being a Scholae position.”

Mako folded his arms and rolled his eyes. “Why, so you won’t have to kill any more of your Jedi friends?”

“No, because Scholae worships Imperial battle doctrine to an unhealthy degree. They will be extremely predictable.” The Quaestor paused for a moment in quiet contemplation. “Unless Dante or Archangel are with them, in which case we are probably screwed.”

“I don’t think they are, I only saw two men dressed in Force user attire. One was a lower Equite and the other looked like a Knight,” Rod spoke up, continuing his surveillance.

“I think the term ‘attire’ is too generous for those awful grey uniform-esque cape and pauldron getups they were wearing. Scholae Palantinae, where good taste goes to die,” Turel remarked with utter contempt. Rhiann gave an uncharacteristic quiet giggle in response.

Celevon stood up and began readying himself for combat. “If you’re done critiquing their choice of wartime fashion alor, what’s the plan for taking this position?”

Griever stepped forward, “The two Force users are your primary threats, we should take them out first.” The rest of the group reacted with subdued surprise, as if he had just appeared out of nowhere instead of having been standing with them the whole time.

“Good point, without Force sensitives you assassin types should be able to make quick work of the sentries and fighting positions without raising an alarm.” The Quaestor added without looking away from the scope of his rifle. “I should be able to pick off any stragglers though, I only have about 24 rounds on me thanks to our little crash.”

Rod broke his gaze through the macrobinoculars, “Why do you use slugthrowers anyway master?”

Turel tapped the silencer affixed to the barrel of his rifle, “Oh, reasons.” He returned his left hand to the scope to make a few adjustments. “Okay, we have a textbook platoon sized outpost with fighting positions laided out among a circular perimeter with overlapping sectors of fire. You’d have to take two or more of the positions out at once to get through the perimeter unnoticed to even reach the Force users.”

“Leave the Force users to me.” Griever stated with the same detached, matter of fact confidence one would declare they were taking care of a group’s restaurant bill.

Rhiann stowed her datapad and stood up. “Celevon and I can split the perimeter and take out the fighting positions without raising an alarm.” The Sephi narrowed her gaze in the slightest of glares in response to the cocked eyebrows and skepticism written on most of the team’s faces. She moved toward the objective. The Aedile shrugged and followed, satisfied with the plan.

“Mako, can you watch our backs and make sure one of those walkers doesn’t sneak up on us.” The Krath gave a begrudged nod and crept off to the party’s rear.

Turel and Rod resumed their focus on the enemy position from their vantage point. The noise and light discipline in the position was lacking. The light pouring out of their tents and pre-fabs shone like a burning beacon in the desert night while the sounds and flashes of a distant battle provided background to what would otherwise be a peaceful area. The Quaestor could see Rhiann and Celevon disappear from view as they drew closer to the perimeter and diverged to their separate targets. He could barely discern two translucent shimmers moving toward enemy fighting positions like ghosts in the darkness.

“Did you see where that Griever guy went?” Turel inquired of his apprentice.

“Nope. Come to think of it, I don’t remember him leaving at all.”

“Well, keep an eye out for him, I’ll watch the Force users. He may need our help.”

The master/student pair watched with growing concern as the Scholae Equite stepped out of the command tent into the center of the AA position. The Scholae male wore the unit’s trademark Imperial officer uniform inspired robes with blue trimming indicating a member of the Obelisk order. The Obelisk paced lazily around the AT-AAs like he had forgotten why he came outside. He was evidently checking on positions and clearly bored. Turel lined up a shot in case it looked like the Equite’s gaze would wander toward Rhiann and Celevon’s handiwork but it never did.

The Scholae Obelisk stopped under the feet of an AT-AA with a confused look on his face like he sensed something just on the edge of perception. He scanned left to right then shrugged, apparently satisfied that it had just been his imagination. Turel exhaled slightly in relief. The Quaestor could barely register what happened next, even through the advanced optics of his rifle.

A shadowy figure appeared behind the Equite and in one smooth motion covered the unaware male’s mouth with his left hand and brought a knife to the poor Dark Jedi’s throat with his right. The Equite’s eyes went wide for a split second as the knife danced across his exposed neck in a smooth motion spilling hot, red, blood onto the Korriban sand. His eyes shot skyward as his body slowly went limp and the shadowy figure drug the body into the darkness underneath the AT-AA.

“I can’t believe he pulled it off. He just shanked an Equite like… like it wasn’t even a thing,” Turel noted half-impressed and half in disbelief.

Rod, watching the same scene unfold through his macrobinoculars nonchalantly remarked, “That little kill stealer!”

“Kill stealer? Seriously? This isn’t a holo-game.”

The Master-Apprentice pair was interrupted by Mako who had just crept back behind the rock. “There’s a walker headed right this way, we need to move!”


The Onderonian rushed forward, leaping towards the sentry as he turned, a firm grasp on the fair-haired male’s mouth as they tumbled to the ground. Before the sentry could regain his breath, Celevon placed his other hand behind the head and wrenched the two apart. A muffled crunch went unheard due to the thuds of the patrolling AT-XTs. The Prelate glanced around before tucking the body beneath the fold of one of the many tents dotting the perimeter.

Blaster fire erupted from an AT-XT near the position where the Quaestor’s temporary nest was located, putting all of the Scholae forces on alert.

The Shadicar swore softly, bending the ambient lighting around his body with the aid of the Force to render him invisible to the naked eye. Celevon moved quickly to the rear of the next tent, his steps soundless on the desolate soil as the Aedile advanced around to the side.

Taking a moment to split his focus, the Prelate reached out with his senses in an attempt to locate the Scholae Knight. After several seconds, the Onderonian gave up when all he discovered was countless vague impressions.

An instinct honed through years of intense training and combat scenarios in similar situations kicked in the moment a soldier clad in attire similar to his previous victims rounded the corner, not two feet from the Shadicar. Celevon pulled his kerambit free of the inverted sheath at his waist, the cloak of Force energy dissipating at the motion, the curved blade moving with the diagonal uppercut as the Obelisk struck. His body uncoiled with the maneuver, the razor-sharp implement ripping through the soft tissue with ease. Viscous fluid sprayed across the side of the tent; an impotent gurgle escaped as the Infantryman tried to draw breath, bubbling up from the ruined throat.

Celevon grabbed the sentry by the front of the shirt before the body could collapse, the icy gaze glazing over as he moved the enemy to where the cadaver rested against the tent. The Onderonian had performed that maneuver enough times to know that he had bisected the carotid arteries on both sides, cleanly severing the trachea. Had the sentry not bled out rapidly, he would have choked to death on his own lifeblood.

A small smirk twisted the lips of the Shadicar as an idea occurred to him. Twisting his neck as though trying to relieve tension, Celevon focused on a skill unique to Brotherhood-trained assassins. Delicate cheekbones shifted into a new position, muscle rippling beneath his skin as the tone of the epidermis darkened a shade.

Color bled into the irises, glacial blue overtaking the exotic mercurial of the Aedile’s gaze. Within the course of several blinks, identical features stared back at one another, though one had frozen in a rictus of pain.

Giving a careful glance at the short-cropped brown hair and atrocious uniform, Celevon inhaled deeply as he began to gracefully weave an intricate web of Force energy. The Onderonian’s attire, to all appearances, shifted to a slate gray uniform reminiscent to that of the Galactic Empire.

His thinner lips curled into a sneer as the Prelate unstrapped the E-11, slipping it over his own head and shoulder. The sight of a familiar shape in the shirt pocket had the Onderonian pulling out the rectangular box. Flicking it open, he retrieved a cylinder and placed it between his lips. The other pocket revealed a primitive silver lighter. He lit the end, exhaling a plume of smoke. Not giving the cooling corpse another glance, the disguised Prelate curved his wrist, tucking the curved dagger into his sleeve.

Celevon stepped out from between the tents, pouring his emotions in a growing pyre within his very mind, purging all thought beyond their mission. He hurried his pace as he caught sight of the Templar his Quaestor had pointed out as their main opposition at this location, beyond the Mundanes. The Aedile took another drag off of the smouldering cylinder as he approached the nearest stationary AT-AA.

The guard that remained outside sighed as he caught sight of the approaching figure. “What are you doing smoking those when you should be patrolling? In case you haven’t noticed, Corporal Vicks, we’re in a battle situation-”

“Is that so?” ‘Vicks’ growled, his voice resembling sandpaper before he took a long drag. “What are you going to do, kill me? Go ahead, it’ll save time.”

“Don’t give me lip, kid. You’re one step away from a courtmartial and-” The guard looked down at his chest as the flicked cigarette impacted, sending a spray of burning cinders up into his face. He sputtered, before his already frayed temper snapped.

The corner of the ‘Corporal’s’ mouth began to twitch into a facsimile of a smirk before it vanished just as quickly. Celevon slid the kerambit into his grasp, spinning into a crouch as he ducked under a punch aimed at his face. The blade slid through the back of his opponent’s right knee, severing the tendon. With his left arm, the Prelate knocked aside a blow aimed at his ribs as he slashed through the same tendon behind the other knee. With no support to keep the guard upright, he began to tumble as the Shadicar followed through with a wide slash that tore through the left side of the guard’s neck, severing the carotid artery. Using the momentum gained, the Onderonian drove his left knee into the sternum of the Mundane, pushing the Scholae Infantryman’s head into position.

The final motion was a vicious uppercut that would have missed without the curved blade in Celevon’s hand. Instead, it hooked into the left eye socket of the guard as the Force user continued to rip upward, sending the Infantryman spiralling to the ground.

It wasn’t an immediate kill, but it would quickly get the job done, just as his Master had taught him. Four devastatingly quick motions and the opponent could no longer stand, was blinded and rapidly bleeding out.

As though the Prelate’s actions had been the needed cue, a shout echoed out. “The Templar’s dead! Man your battlestations, we’re under attack!”

In his peripheral vision, Celevon saw Rhiann appear just as the Knight was walking past, one of her daggers in hand as she quickly stalked her prey.

The Aedile snapped the strap as he yanked the blaster off of him before dropping the weapon to the ground. As he entered the Anti-Air vehicle, the Onderonian released his hold on the illusion and the dead sentry’s facial features simultaneously.

A barrel of a blaster pistol appeared directly before Celevon’s face and, had he tried to think on it, would have perished right then. The Force screamed a warning which the Shadicar heeded, leaning away as a red bolt erupted from the tip. He released his grip on the curved dagger, dropping it to the floor as the Prelate grasped the hilt of his katana, drawing in striking in a single graceful motion.

Celevon ignored the body falling to the floor and the head tumbling away as he searched for the other gunner in the darkened interior of the vehicle. A harsh breathing reminded the Prelate of the Pilot, who tried to flee the moment the Qel-Droman drew close.

The Aedile caught him by the wrist, instinctively pulling the Pilot flush against him when he noticed the figure near the door. Two bolts of energy leapt forth within a fraction of a second, catching the Pilot in the back. The body went limp in his arms, though he didn’t release his Human shield.

“You made a stupid mistake. I thought you Arconans were known for your awareness of everything around you,” the Gunner sneered tauntingly.

“It seems you think otherwise?” Celevon drawled.

“I caught you when no one else could. That promotion is mine.”

“The only thing you’ve done is prove how stupid you and your friends our?”

“What’re yo-grgh-.”

Celevon saw his blade piercing through the front of the Gunner’s throat. “You never looked to see if I was working alone. Now you will pay for this with your life.”

Rhiann ripped the curved dagger free, wiped it off on the trousers of the Gunner and handed it over to the Prelate. “I do believe this belongs to you.”

As soon as he accepted his favorite weapon, the Assassin habitually ran his thumb of the raised emblems of the Shadesworn blackbird and his Master’s mark.

”Team, can you hear me!?”

The two of them immediately put a finger to their ears. It was Celevon who answered.

“That’s affirmative, sir.”

“Don’t bother with the other AA right now. We’re pinned down. Where the frak is Griever?

A voice came across, instantly recognized by the two.

“Boom! Headshot!”


“We’re headed your way now, boss.”

“Hurry, we’re running low on ammo. Henymory, zap the people with energy, not damned walkers!” Sorenn barked. “Out!”


Mako’s emerald eyes narrowed at the Quaestor’s words however he did adjust his aim, sending Force guided sparks of electricity into the foreheads of the enemy troops advancing upon their sniper nest.

“HAHA, another headshot,” Rod exclaimed as another trooper fell before them. Turel’s eyes grew wide as the Force tickled his frontal cortex with a warning of impending danger. The Quaestor grabbed his apprentice by the shoulder and dove to one side narrowly avoiding the blasts from one of the walkers.

“Where Is Griever!?” The frustrated leader exclaimed.

“No idea, hopefully nearby though,” Mako yelled back as he moved to deflect several incoming blaster shots from the enemy. The acrid smell of burnt and melted sand filled the air, it was overpowering to one’s sense of smell. To the Priest it felt like home, under his emotionless facade he felt the elation of adrenaline as it coursed through his veins. He had missed the feeling of fighting through the flight reflex.

Sorenn stepped beside the Rollmaster, their sabers become a blur of white and blue as they deflected incoming shots with practiced ease. Rod assumed the prone position behind the pair of Equites, taking carefully aimed shots between their legs with a blaster.

“We need to move,” Turel spoke briskly as another shot went between his legs, finding its mark in the chest of a trooper.

“That’s an understatement,” the Rollmaster replied, his eyes scanning for an egress route. “Behind us to the left, there is some cover there. Move with the dust.”

“What?” Turel managed to get out before the Priest let loose a wave of telekinetic energy, causing the loose sand to kick up in its wake. Digging deep the Rollmaster released another wave, thickening the dust that obscured the enemies’ view.

As the three Arconans moved toward cover, a shimmer appeared on the battlefield before them which quickly materialized into Griever. The mysterious man raised an arm fingers spread toward their enemy. Turel opened his mouth to yell out to their ally but the words failed to come as the man walked toward the enemy, disappearing once more from sight. Moments passed before sickening screams issued forth from the dust as Griever began to work.


Griever moved like the breath of a vengeful God. The dust kicked up by Mako provided him an arena, his audience only given the occasional glimpse before he vanished back into the maelstrom. Screams provided the musical accompaniment to his work. And it was just that: labour. There was no pause to revel in the task at hand, he simply killed like a black-armoured whirlwind, the cyan blade sliding over him like oil, licking out, providing a strobe-light to the cacophony, each flash punctuated by a scream.

Turel, Mako and Rod didn’t stay to watch; they ran down the rocky slope, half skidding, half falling, eager to get away from the hilltop. Even for seasoned warriors and veterans of a thousand collected skirmishes, there were times where the screams of the dying shot through them, raking icy fingers of chilled dread along their backs, and they had no choice but to obey that most primal of urges – Run!

In the camp, it was chaos. The dead and dying lay in crumpled messes, and one of the two AT-AAs was smoking and listing dangerously to one side, two if its legs sheared off at the joints. Clearly, Griever hadn’t been idle.

Rod’s rifle came up and snapped off a shot at an approaching soldier, who dropped, gurgling from the charred hole in his neck rather than his mouth. Behind him, Celevon and Rhiann appeared, both startled by the appearance of the others.

“Where is Griever?” Rhiann said, echoing a sentiment that had been felt by the others for the majority of the conflict.

Turel jerked a thumb over his shoulder in answer, and Celevon glanced up at the hilltop, his mouth hanging open.

Griever stood with his back silhouetted on the hilltop, his feet planted just a bit wider than shoulder-length apart. His saber weaved an impossibly complex defence, catching innumerable bolts each second, redirecting them harmlessly away. Any he didn’t deflect, he simply stepped around, moving with the preternatural speed of a creature born more from legend than life.

“The Mighty Guard… It can’t be…” Celevon breathed, momentarily forgetting his surroundings.

“Focus, Celevon. We’ve got work to do.” Turel commanded, shuddering inwardly. Griever may have just saved their lives, but he didn’t want to be within a kilometre of the man who moved like grim death through the battlefield.


The Rollmasters eyes widened as he watched the flurry of Griever’s light blue blade. The lightsaber moved in a complex pattern as it swatted blaster shots away or back toward their origin as if Griever was in a mere training exercise. One word passed through Mako’s mind as he observed the onslaught that was Griever. That word was ’Elder’. His emerald eyes tore away from the frightening display of combat prowess to take in the others around himself.

Turel was trying to get the team to move away from the man defending them. Celevon was stuck staring at Griever, his jaw obviously slack underneath his mask at remembrance. Tilting his head slightly to the side, Mako made the connection between Griever and the DIA files he had poured over prior this mission.

“It’s time to go brother,” the Rollmaster said resting a hand upon Celevon’s shoulder.

“It can’t be, it just can’t,” the Onderonian stammered out as Mako’s pale hands grabbed the sides of his head jerking it away. Celevon suddenly found himself staring into the Rollmaster’s emerald eyes, a nonexistent glow seeming to resonate from them.

“Turel is right, we need to go now,” the Priest spoke softly but firmly, before softening his tone when he noted the confusion in the Prelate’s eyes. “Your Master will be fine. He will find us soon, but we need to leave now.”

Blinking twice. Celevon nodded as the shock and pain of the long lost waned from his mind. The change noted, the raven haired Rollmaster released the Prelate and pointed to where the rest of the team had already begun moving.

“They left us?”

“No; you were too in shock at seeing him still alive to realize that they had begun movement,” The Priest shot down the question from Edraven with the simple facts. “It is too dangerous to stay here; we need to move to safer ground with the rest of the team.”

With a simple nod shared between them, the two Equites rushed off on Force augmented muscles to catch their team.


The wind died down as the moon reached its zenith in the cool desert night. Darkness had fallen, but dawn was fast approaching and time was running out for the team to complete the objective. Turel’s mind raced as he marched through the sand toward the enemy encampment. This mission was very high risk. This base was significantly larger than the anti-air position they had just taken. There would be a large number of enemy Force users, if the team was not careful this could go south very quickly. According to intel this was a joint Scholae/Odan-Urr position, which would be laughable in any other circumstances. The Quaestor wondered if there was a way to capitalize on the enemy’s discomfort with one another. Divide and conquer.

The team had split up prior to this point with a similar plan as last time. Turel and Rod would provide sniper overwatch while Rhiann, Celevon and Griever infiltrated to conduct the sabotage operations. Mako had set off toward the far side of the enemy base to take out the external sensors and scouting patrols. Splitting up like that against a numerically superior force was dangerous, but also aided in avoiding detection. Individual Dark Jedi would be harder to sense than if they were clustered. Still, all they had to do was accomplish their goals and wait for the proverbial cavalry to arrive. Seemed simple enough, but no plan survives contact with the enemy as the old saying goes.

Turel was happy Mako was out of his presence right now. Despite the heart to heart he had with Rhiann, the thought of killing Jedi still bothered him on a deep level. He knew this was war and he had a mission to accomplish. But the killing of fellow light siders was an arbitrary line the former Guardian dared not cross. Doing so would force him to confront the reality that perhaps he was delusional to cling to his identity as Jedi as he did. Perhaps he had fallen, or more accurately relapsed in his case. The ex-gangster had walked in darkness long before he could touch the Force and bend it to his will.

There would be time to wrestle with morality and matters of Force philosophy later, Turel had a mission to complete and the lives of his sworn Clan mates were riding on his team. He found his chosen vantage point and signaled for Rod to join him as a spotter. The master-apprentice pair crept to the crest of a small sand dune overlooking the enemy position.

“Wow, we have a lot stiffer opposition this time,” the Sith commented as he observed the base through his macrobinoculars. “I’d say we are looking at two full strength battalions with attached Force users.”

The Quaestor nodded. “Yeah, I don’t think the assassins will be able to cut their way through this one. Even that Griever character. We just need to break the stuff we need to break and get out before the fireworks kick off.”

The pair continued to watch the comings and goings of the enemy outpost when out of the blue Turel’s head shot up from his slugthrower rifle scope. “Rod! Get down!” The Obelisk rolled on top of his apprentice and pulled him below the crest of the sand dune. Before Rod had a chance to react, or spit the sand out of his mouth a spotlight shone on the dune where they had been a second before.

“FRAK!” Turel muttered under his breath.

“Do you think they spotted us?”

“I don’t plan on waiting around for the men with guns to show up to find out.”

Off in the distance, the pair heard muffled shouts of “This way!” and “Cut off their escape!”

Rod pulled out his armory lightsaber. “Well that answers that question.”

Turel tried to key up his comm but only got static. Karking jammers. “Rod, I don’t have time to explain, you need to evade as best you can and try to get a signal to the others.”

“You can’t plan on facing them alone master.”

“I’m not going to face them. I’m going to surrender to them.”

“Surrender? That didn’t work out too well when Luke Skywalker tried that during the Battle of Endor.”

The Quaestor shot his apprentice a death stare, “There is no time to argue, besides I’m not surrendering per se. I’m going to ‘defect’ back to the Jedi.” He exhaled slowly and relaxed his stare. “The mission is more important than me. If I can convince them I’m here alone to defect, or at least give them pause, it will buy you guys some time until the attack kicks off.”

“That’s a really crazy plan.”

Turel smiled. “Crazy like a fox. Now go! And cover your tracks in the sand!”

Rod shook his head and took off in the direction leading away from the camp. Turel slung his rifle, pulled out his lightsaber which he left off and calmly walked toward the sound of the approaching voices. “Hey! I’m a bit lost, can one of you point me to the Odan-Urr position?”


30 Minutes ago
Scholae Anti-Air Position

With their mystery member tearing through the battlefield, Rhiann quietly stepped away from the others once again to make her way to the command tent. Using the unsettled dust as cover, the woman cloaked herself and became nothing but a shimmer sidestepping around the destruction. She’d stop and glance toward the directions of the others time to time, making sure to stay out of the way of sniper fire; not wanting to leave that completely to her battle-brother and his student to watch out for their allies.

The opening of the tent flapped upon her entrance, the woman having to crouch some to avoid knocking her head on the framing holding the tent up. Not stopping to think if there was going to be anyone left, the Sephi uncloaked herself to a man staring up at her with what looked to be a communications device in his hand.

His trembling voice suddenly spoke when his hand rested back on the button to open the line back up, “I repeat-- we’ve been attacked by a group of Force us–”

Unsure who was picking up the signal, Rhiann decided to let these enemies of theirs listen to one of the last men alive at the outpost choke on his own blood as her hand quickly drew a dagger from her side, slitting the man’s throat wide open. Blood spayed onto the communications device set up in the small tent, her feet pushing her to the computer while her hands reached to cut the line.

It took the rest of their little group a few minutes to make it over to the tent, but upon entering they could see the too tall Sephi hunched over the electronics, her fingers tapping away at trying to reach the Invicta while the man at her feet stained the sand red. She seemed to be frustrated with attempting to secure the line for their own use, shifting from foot to foot as her muttering in tech-speak turned into swearing, not noticing the men who had just piled into the small tent.

“Geez, remind me not to be on your bad side when you haven’t gotten laid for weeks,” Turel deadpanned, his eyes going from the corpse to Rhiann and back.

With a grunt, Rhiann watched the terminal’s lights light up, her body perking up as the line started to crackle and a welcome voice greeted them from the other side.

“About time. I thought you had all perished,” said the stoic voice of Marick as the line cleared up. It might have been the delirium, but… was that a hint of relief in their Consul’s voice.

“I am unsure if this line is secure,” Rhiann suddenly said, sounding unhappy with her own work on the terminal.
The line crackled once more, most of what Marick had to say about it being lost in the static. It cleared up once as he started to speak of what truly mattered.

“There’s a base between here and the tomb consisting of those from Odan-Urr and Scholae. According to our intel, the Jedi make up the most of the bulk, but they’re directly in our way,” Marick started to explain, “Take out their communications abilities and sensor assets as well as anything else you deem important before the group coming in behind you arrives in 6 hours.”

The tent was silent until Turel spoke up once more.

“Affirmative.” The Quaestor said, his joking demeanor from only moments ago moving to a more serious one with his boss present.

“Good. Do exercise caution.”

The line cut out at that, Rhiann straightening herself only to knock her head on one of the tent’s main structure poles, a scowl on her face preceding grumbles as she left the tent, the remainder of them filing out one by one as they prepared to leave.


The political climate in Arcona had shifted substantially. Apparently, the Entars were no longer in control. Or, they weren’t obviously in control. Marick had chosen a path not walked since the times of Mejas Doto; he’d led alone. No familial ties, nobody pulling the strings behind the scenes, no support.

That was both good and bad.

The positives meant that no one Family could dictate the lives of nearly a billion souls in the Dajorra system, and that it would probably be safe to return. The negatives were that he’d had to survive for this long without a support network of figures who could safely navigate their way through the briar patch which comprised the political landscape of the Dark Jedi Brotherhood. He’d be tired, worn out, and paranoid. Griever could only sympathise. It did, however, hopefully mean that there’d not be that many attempts on the Elder’s life, were he to return.

He wasn’t really observing the outpost. He’d already taken most of the pertinent details in. No, his mind was elsewhere, mulling on his choice to return. Was it the right one? Was this new generation he’d spent the latest conflict observing a fit replacement for the many who’d fallen or simply left since his heyday?

Night had fallen. Still, the valley and surrounding hillside was alight with the fires of war, but for now, his own neighbourhood seemed quiet. It’d change soon. Well, it’d better, or Griever had very definite ideas about how he’d make sure it did. House Scholae Palatinae. The old enemy. It had been a point of immense satisfaction to discover that they were still a House on his return, still not fit for the mantle of Clan. He smiled behind his mask and respirator. He could never suffer their out-dated military to live. Odan Urr, they were simply an afterthought; A layer of icing sugar on an already-deflated souffle.

The only wrinkle was who in particular inhabited the base. A third of Arcona’s leadership, and both had personal connections, in one way or another, to Griever. The rest of the team he’d last seen at the gully where they’d ambushed the opposing forces. He’d gone his own way since then. More for time to think than any other reason. Celevon was starting to pierce the veil he kept up. It wasn’t surprising, given their past connections. It had been stupid to allow sentimentality to get in the way, and choose to observe his former apprentice, but then again, he’d always been one for family.

An alarm klaxon cut through his reverie. Down below from his vantage point, the base reacted like a kicked ant hill. Troops stormed from open doorways, orders were shouted, and a form of organised chaos reigned supreme. Distantly, gunfire began to erupt, though Griever couldn’t tell if it was from inside the base or not.


It had been a decent amount of time since Rod had taken off in a dead sprint away from his Master. The last thing he heard was Turel’s voice followed by what sounded like a rather hard punch. No doubt his Master had some smart remark for his captors that they didn’t appreciate.

Do you ever know when to not make a joke, Master? The Sith thought to himself as he continued to run.

Since then, chaos had enveloped the small base; alarms and explosions could be heard throughout, and the young Sith was no longer sure if he would be able to find his comrades.

I guess I should try and find Mako or Celevon. I’m sure Rhiann is already hacking away at the comms systems and who knows what kind of havoc that Griever guy is causing.

Ahead of him, the Jedi Hunter heard the muffled screams of men, all of which seemed to end rather abruptly. He stopped short behind a sand dune and listened. It sounded like a small squad was in combat, and by the random shouts and overall confusion, they weren’t faring too well.

Rod crawled his way to the top of the dune and peered over the edge. Before him lay a multitude of dead Odan-Urr infantry, and two figures that he immediately recognized as Celevon and Mako.

Rod quickly popped up and sprinted towards the pair, who were facing away from him. As he closed in to just a few short steps away, the Onderonian turned and Rod found himself standing with a blade pressed against his neck.

“Oh, it’s you,” The Aedile stated, seemingly unphased by the fact that he had nearly decapitated one of his own men.

“Where’s your Master?” Mako queried, “Did he finally run away to join his Jedi friends?”


Turel hit the metal floor of a makeshift holding area with a thud that caused his vision to flash and fade out for a second. The Obelisk had been stripped of his armor and weapons with his hands stun cuffed behind his back. He slowly rose and peeled his face from the cold floor. Two Scholae guards towered above, having just hurled him into the room like a sack of bantha poodoo. He made eye contact with the guards then spit off to the side. “I’d like to speak to your manager, I find these accommodations less than satisfactory.” Turel stated in his best mocking upper class Corellian accent.

“Be silent Arconan before we silence you!”

Turel blinked, trying to see through the growing puffiness of his right eye. “You shan’t be receiving a tip from me young man…OMPF!” The second guard cut off the Quaestor’s sass with a kick to the stomach.

“You’re lucky the lighties want to debrief you, otherwise you’d be dead.”

A cocksure smile came across the Obelisk’s face. Every single member of that patrol would be dead right now if Turel had approached them to fight. “Well I guess I’m lucky someone around here has some manners then.”

The first guard turned away for a moment, receiving instructions from his comm. He turned back around. “The lightie general is on her way to debrief the prisoner.”

That guard said “she” that could mean either A’lora or Vorsa, neither of which are good for me.

The Neti Guardian V’yr Vorsa entered the room. Vorsa turned to the Scholae guards, “Leave us.”

Vorsa spent a few moments silently examining her protege. Finally she opened the door to the empty room to address the guards outside. “This is a ruse, put the base on maximum alert. Have your people send out patrols. He is not alone.”


“Nice to see you again Master Vorsa.” The Quaestor nodded with sincere respect.

The old Neti did not break her gaze or betray any emotion in her voice. “I would say the same child if you were not here as part of a deception.”

Turel knew better than to try to lie to his former mentor. Like a mother, somehow she always knew. “How do you know I’m not actually here to defect?”

“This isn’t the first time you’ve allowed yourself to be captured.”

The Obelisk nodded. Purity Rock, of course. “Well, it really is good to see you. I just wish it were under different circumstances.”

“These circumstances are of your own making.”

Turel grew indignant, “Oh, that. Well you stood by while they cast me out for having the gall to try to leverage Arcona’s resources for the benefit of New Tython. Now you stand here as Jac and Taldrya’s servants. Who’s made the wrong choices?”

The Odanite Rollmaster sat down next to her injured former student. “The past cannot be changed. It does no good to argue over it, child.”

“Then what shall we discuss?”

“Why are you here? Where are your allies?” The Neti replied without hesitation or inflection.

“You know I’m not just going to give you that information.”

“And you know I am not going to stop seeking it. This is war, we are enemies, we both have lives we must protect. It is the way of things.”

Hearing Vorsa refer to him as enemy felt like getting stabbed in the chest, even if it was completely accurate. Turel couldn’t hide the pained expression on his face. He whispered, “You could never be my enemy.”

Vorsa leaned over and tenderly placed a hand on the Quaestor’s face, “When we take up the sword and swear loyalty to Clans or Houses or Orders, we forfeit that choice. You swore loyalty to the Shadow Lord, today that makes us enemies.” She stood up to leave. “You must do your duty as I must do mine.”

Turel opened his mouth to speak but no words came out. No words were needed. The two former Knight-Commanders were as mother and son, but were still soldiers to their causes. Her final lesson to him on being a commander of troops was one of the cost of duty.

The Neti left the Human alone with his thoughts.


She had to be careful. While the other, smaller base did have Force sensitive users, she was up against people she knew could find her. There was no doubt in her mind that their presence was already noted, frowning at her inability to completely secure the line they had only used hours before to communicate with Marick. Their plan was long compromised.

A sudden gust of wind had the Sephi pulling her Master’s borrowed cape up to shield herself from the sand, her feet still moving toward the base as she wove around and attempted to find a location she could easily sneak past without notice. All openings were bound to be guarded at this point, so the only thing she could do was create a way in for herself.

Eyeing the ones tasked with guarding the perimeter, Rhiann stopped herself to take a breath and concentrate, suppressing her signature within the Force to allow herself to slip between the guards and scale the wall of one of the camp’s temporary structures, sitting herself at the top of it a quick moment to take a look at what she was dealing with. There was no doubt she’d have to search to find the communications terminals, the woman’s nose wrinkling at the thought. She had guts, but even this seemed like a lot for someone like her.

“Jedi…” Rhi muttered as her eyes narrowed at some of the ones she recognized nearby, hanging herself off the side of the structure’s wall to peek into a window before entering.

She couldn’t sense any Force users in this small area, a hand taking a hold of a dagger in case the worst were to happen. There was no way the communications terminal didn’t have anyone at it. This was a war. There had to be constant communications between the forces. Rhiann may have never been one for this kind of thing until about a year ago, but she was a quick learner and her Master had taught her many little things about battle before the two of them had to say their temporary farewells upon leaving Antei.

Taking a quick look around the building, Rhiann kept herself cloaked as she moved onto another structure, making sure not to come within a close distance to any of the enemies here. A bead of sweat ran down her forehead and down her nose as Rhi kept herself moving along the sands, pushing her body harder to keep up the pace and not stop moving until she made it to the next structure, slipping into the building’s door.

Upon entering, she froze. The terminal was right there. She was correct in her assumption that it would be further into the camp, but something was wrong. There was absolutely no one present. There wasn’t even anyone in the area. This reeked of a trap. But there was no way Rhiann could turn back now. She couldn’t abandon her task. Short of just destroying the terminal, no one else in their group could reprogram it or shut the communications down properly.

Although she was hesitant, Rhiann stepped forward to the terminal and her fingers started to dance along the dozens and dozens of buttons and keys as her pitch black eyes watched the screen. Accessing it was easy enough. Getting into their programs was easy enough…

“This is… too easy.”

Rhiann stopped and stared at the screen for a moment after her lips finished uttering the words. Even with her fingers not moving and not inputting anything into the communications terminal, her hacking commands were writing themselves in.

“No… no no no…”

Upon the hacking prompts completing themselves, words showed up on the screen. The Sephi’s breath hitched in her throat as her eyes stared at the screen. Her movements froze.



There was a beeping coming from in behind the terminal that grew louder by the millisecond, Rhiann only able to barely bring up the cape on her back along with her arm as she tried to flee when the bomb detonated and the terminal fragmented into thousands of pieces. The Sephi was unable to properly shield herself from the blast, getting stuck with numerous larger fragments to her body, other smaller ones getting embedded into the eye she was unable to cover in time.

Unable to tell what the damage was, she struggled to get herself up among the rubble of the building. The explosion should have killed her; lady luck was smiling down upon the woman at this time, it seemed. Pulling out the larger fragments, she suddenly felt the sharp pain in her right eye, grasping it suddenly as she dropped to her knees in pain. Her body shook and her lip bled as she bit down on it to stop herself from screaming in pain, forcing herself back up to start wandering out of the camp’s area in attempt to find the others.

There was no way she could continue.


Moments after what seemed like multiple explosions rocked the base, the chaos of the sudden battle filtered into the mind of the Qel-Droman Quaestor. To his stunned ears, it felt as if there had been a cascade effect of concussion: One outside, immediately followed by a louder one that had sent the temporary wall of the next room bursting inward.

The buzzing eased slightly, revealing the bedlam of mixed combat in the close quarters of the next room. Instinctively, Sorenn knew the wall had opened to the outside, lessening the amount of ambient noise. Lightsabers crescendoed against one another, blaster bolts sang through the air alongside the much quieter metallic harmony of blades slicing through flesh and bone.

Silence. Then the echo of voices rendered into a jumble of confusing pitches.


Viewpoint Shift: Turel to Celevon

The Onderonian sheathed one of his blades after clearing it of blood, mercurial gaze taking in every angle of the room they had just cleared. He had dropped deep into the flames within his mind, compartmentalizing everything until they were clear of the battlefield and Celevon could properly think. The bodies strewn about the room in varied states of mutilation from the blast-wave and subsequent destruction the Arconan team had unleashed were merely an after-thought.

It occurred to the Shadicar that the Rollmaster and Jedi Hunter were in the midst of a heated argument.

“- I don’t see why we’re wasting our time. From a strategic viewpoint, leaving Sorenn behind to complete our mission is a necessary sacrifice,” Henymory pointed out coldly.

The Prelate interrupted the pair before it could continue, emotions buried so deep that his own tones sent shivers of dread down his spine. “You two can have your verbal foreplay once we’ve completed our mission. For now, get your osik together. No one gets left behind.” Celevon glared at the pair, ignoring the sneer curling the Krath’s lips, absently taking note of the stiffened spine of Rodell. A clear indicator from experience that told the Aedile the Sith was fighting down the urge to salute. “It doesn’t matter where he came from or what blood flows within his veins. He’s an Arconan now, one of our brothers. Dead or alive, he’s coming home. We leave no one behind. Griever is handling the other objectives. Go free Sorenn whilst I see what I can do about Rhiann.”

Celevon didn’t wait to see how they followed his orders; the agony the Sephi was suffering came across the dull edge of his senses as though it were sharpened nails running down a blackboard. Later, the Onderonian would voice how impressed he was that the Executive Officer had been able to endure it silently.

The Aedile dropped to his knees near the female, toning down his senses as he let the pyre fall. “Let me see, Baenre-”

“Not important,” the Apex XO attempted to wave the Onderonian off. “Our mission is of a much higher prio-”

“The rest of our team are carrying out the objectives. Turel is being released as we speak. Right now, preventing infection and stopping the bleeding is th-”


“Alright. What the frack is going on here? Is Rhiann alright?”

The Prelate spoke up before the Sephi could claim to be ‘fine’. “I saw her go down, holding her face. Between the console and the wall itself exploding, I can easily see it being some kind of shrapnel wound. She’s resisting my attempts at treatment-”

“I will be fine! There are more importa-”

“Rhiann, stop arguing. Let him do what he can. The last thing you want is an infection to further complicate matters. Celevon, get healing,” Turel ordered roughly, his voice scratching from the lack of moisture.

The Onderonian withdrew his canteen and pressed it to the Quaestor’s chest before he moved closer to the female. The Shadicar moved both hands to hover above the area of injury, eyes closing as he focused completely. To Celevon, it felt as though his vision were sinking down through the tissue.

The Prelate inwardly winced at the sheer amount of damage, along with the embedded piece of shrapnel. The first step was to disable the pain receptors in the area temporarily. The Aedile channeled the healing energies of the Force through the Sephi, sealing the burst blood vessels in the area after taking care of the pain she felt. Unfortunately, he could only do so much. Celevon was unaware of how much time had passed before he opened his eyes.

“What’s the verdict?”

“I’ve dulled her ability to feel pain in that area, essentially disabled her ability to move that eye. Stopped the bleeding and stabilized the wound itself… Truthfully, I’m not sure what the medics will say. This is beyond my level of skill. It may need to be replaced,” the Aedile shrugged helplessly, tearing a strip off of his robe which he handed to the Quaestor. “Tie this around her head to keep anything from getting into the wound.”

Celevon hoped his Quaestor understood the silent message. We need to complete the mission and evac as soon as physically possible.


Turel reached into a bag that was laying at Rhiann’s side and pulled out a bulky antenna. He quickly began fumbling with the switches and rotating the array to try to get a good signal.

While the Quaestor was working to get the comms online, Rod was crouched in the corner of the small tent, feeling more than a little useless. He did a quick survey of the small tent the team had ducked into. Celevon was still looking after Rhiann, who now had a cloth tied around her injured eye. Mako was alone in the other corner, seemingly lost in thought. Rod quickly realized someone was missing.

“Where the frak did that Griever guy go?” The Sith blurted out.

As if on cue, the imposing figure of the Elder appeared in the entrance flap of the tent.

“The mission is complete,” He said in a modulated voice “All of their communications and sensor relays are destroyed.”

“Mission success,” Turel replied “Well, I guess we can call it a success. Now if I can get this frakking long range transmitter working we can call in a medevac and get off this sandtrap.”

Just as the Quaestor finished his sentence, a green light blinked into life on the transmitter, and a crackle of static came through the speaker. After a few short seconds, the unmistakable voice of the Shadow Lord could clearly be heard.

“Has the mission been completed?”

“Yes my lord, the mission was a success.” Turel replied. “However, Rhiann has been badly injured and we cannot continue to fight, we need a medevac.”

“Understood, a shuttle is enroute. Good work, team.”