This thread is intended for use between Maelous Ascarend and Jade Sadow. If you are interested in possibly being part of this run on please contact us.
Jade moaned against the ground, her muscles stiff. Every little sound rang in her ears. She could hear a small creature running nearby, it had 6 feet, was small, some sort of rodent. The Cathar in her wanted to pounce, to work on her hunting and fighting, but she couldn’t move. Letting out a ragged breath she felt a small cool breeze. Good. She thought. When there was a slight breeze it meant the possibility of rain, which allowed small droplets of water to run into what she was calling her cell. It was the only water she got, and she was pretty sure It had to have been a good 4 days since she last had a drop. At first she would make a small pile in the dirt of the floor, poking holes into it so she could collect some water. But in time the dust soaked up her water bowls, or her those holding her would trample over them as they burst into her cell.
Jade felt a small trickle of water brush past her hand. Blinking she slowly rolled over on to her back, forcing herself to sit up against the wall. She had been fighting so much, literally tooth and nail. But they got smart and brought in ysthamari, sapping her strength and connection to the force. Jade moved a tattered portion of what remained of her shirt and looked at the blaster mark still on her abdomen. She shook her head, her fangs itching behind her dry cracked red lips. It had been a dirty move. She wasn’t sure how many days ago it was now, but they had dragged her out of her cell, tossing her into a room. She was given a stick, as though they wanted a laugh to watch her fight. A Sith, like their prized pet. She had done well, destroying 3 of them quickly, without even breaking a sweat. While she fought she had tried to find a way out. Then one figure had come in, she couldn’t even remember what he looked like now. He was strong, actually gave her a challenge. As she went to make her move he laughed, watching his men bring in the force dampeners, as she looked around, one of them shot her. She had gone down, feeling boots kicking her as she tried to recover. She was sick from the lost connection, a shock to her system, and the shot made it hard for her body to recover.
Jade swallowed, leaning against the wall to kiss the water trickling down and wet her lips, before licking it. The dusty walls made her lips curl and her taste buds revolt, but she had no choice. She just hoped it was only dirt on the walls.
She smiled as she licked another drop of water, a bitter metallic taste following it, lingering in her mouth. Just when the figure had thought he had won she had managed to take the stick and take out his knees, forcing him to the ground. Jade then jumped up and went to pounce but was met by another blaster and a stun hit. That’s when she woke back up in her cell. As an added bonus she felt the toxin they must have injected her with while she was out, coursing through her veins, making it difficult to move. Mixed with no food or water, the time she spent trying to use the fore to heal herself, was taking most of her strength. She had to decide between healing to be able to fight, or fighting to live.
The drops of water faded as the small storm passed, leaving her almost more thirsty then when she had started. Leaning her head against the wall she thought about the Clan and the people in it. She had no idea how long she had been away, and figured by now one was looking for her. Macron she could see doing all his experiments, she was certain that’s where her love of alchemy came from. He was family to her though, no doubt about it. Maelous helmet swept into her minds’ eye. His dammed helmet, she chuckled, then coughed at the dry air. She moaned as she moved her head against the wall as though fluffing up a pillow. She still remembered using the force to float it high up into the ceiling of the library, watching him pout as he wondered who he was going to kill for touching it. She smiled, silly Maelous with his silly helmet.
A male voice seeped into her mind. Jade?
Jade smiled against the wall, hoping the storm would come back as the burning in her abdomen and broken ribs increased her pain level. She could even imagine his voice…
Unexplored Cave System,
Terra Do Gelo, Tarthos,
Dust particles danced in the amber light of the chemlamp affixed to the Battlemasters armor. His hidden, yellow eyes searched the gloom as he moved. He had been mapping the cave system for several days now. Having left the seat of Aedile, Maelous had begun to pursue his own works again. While he wasn’t purposefully hiding, he had been distinctly absent from Clan Naga Sadow’s affairs for the last few months.
He had immediately went into seclusion and focused on mastering the voice in his mind. That shattered fragment of his psyche had become something of an unwanted companion instead of a manic threat. He was aware of it’s origin now, but that still did not allow his mind to become whole again.
Once his mind was again under his control he began to look for information about the great Sith Lords of old. He found stories about Revan, Bane, Naga Sadow, and even some information about Ajunta Pall.
Now he searched for something completely his own, to leave his mark on the Brotherhood and the galaxy. The caverns seemed ultimately empty, though the occasional trace of Force energy would seem to flare up around him and then quickly dissipate. He could not connect this to any sentient being but needed to look further into this occurrence.
He reached a fork in the tunnel and tapped at the datapad mounted into his armor a moment. He was about to step down the path to his left with the tiny ball of thought and emotion in the back of his mind exploded. He froze as the sensation of pain, anger, and violence wracked his mind. The bitter tang of metal and water touched his tongue. He felt sudden and undeniable helplessness. Then he heard a familiar chuckle.
Without though he turned and ran, the Force fueling him, down the tunnel the way he had come. He did not know where she was, but she was in trouble and he had to find her.
Jade struggled to wipe blood running down her forehead into her eye as the door slammed shut behind her. She was so tired, so tapped out. Somehow they managed to time their interrogations perfectly. She would just recover enough to start healing when someone would come in and drag her out the door. Sighing, she moved to sit against the wall, it was a bit warmer then the ground she was on. She had to think of something to keep her going. She was too strong willed to give in to who ever these…well, she could think of a few choice words to use. She wouldn’t give them the satisfaction of believing they had broken her. She chuckled and then coughed at the action. They had definitely broken some bones, but she still refused to give any answers. Though truth be told, she didn’t even really understand what they had asked her the last time, though she knew she heard Maelous name.
Ahhh Maelous. She giggled. Poor Mael-bot. Her mind wandered, and she could picture him clearly, it looked like he was running somewhere. She wasn’t sure where the memory was coming from but was fun to watch. It distracted her from the pain coursing throughout her body. 'You shouldn’t be running Mael-bot. You aren’t carrying any oil’ she laughed as she thought about him glaring at her.
Jades eyelids fluttered even as they remained closed. She could have sworn she heard her name. Must be one of the captures, but she was too tired, to injured to respond. They would have to come back when she was able to fight again.
(some time passes)
Jade let out a long breath and looked up at the darkened ceiling. Her Cathar side gave her better night vision, but not having any light was depressing. A good move on their part, she would admit. She forced herself to get up and walk around the cell. A former apprentice of hers came to mind. Zaxen. She wondered how he was doing now. He had always commented on being able to see the dark tendrils of power moving around her, slithering like shadowy ribbons waiting to ensnare prey. He had been her favourite apprentice, if one could say they had favourites. Her other two had gone on to do great things, but she was closest to Zaxen. She imagined seeing what he had seen, as she walked. Focusing on the dark tendrils flowing around her, from her, turning them to flow over her and through her, helping to heal and give her strength. He hadn’t needed a helmet like Maelous did. She smiled *do you ever clean that thing?’
I’m coming Jade
The voice whispered in the back of her mind, it felt afraid, angry, protective…but also like a dream. At first she thought it was them announcing their arrival for once, trying to catch her off guard, but she soon realized it was just the whisper of the dark side, lending her strength to fight back.
Above the Sea of Nevaar, Tarthos,
“Where are we headed, sir.” the pilot asked has he pulled back on the controls.
“Just get me into space,” Maelous hissed through the helmet’s vocoders, “I’ll tell you where to go.”
“Sir, I need a destination to repor…” the young pilot cut off as the Battlemaster’s gloved hand gripped the back of his neck.
“I have no need to explain myself,” his voice the sound of ground bone on steal, “The Force will be guiding us and if that is not enough for you I will throw you out of the airlock myself,”
Maelous released the human’s neck with an air of indifference. As the rose out of the atmosphere the voice in his mind chuckled slightly at the idea of the Corporal freezing out at the vacuum of space. He sneered inwardly at it, and it lapsed back into silence. The Sith tapped his armor mounted holopad, keying into the Houses military frequency. “This is Maelous Ascarend, aboard transport vessel TL-7601. We will be going radio silent.” He terminated the connection and took the seat next to the pilot. The corrupted eyes peering out through the dark lenses of his helmet as he searched.
“Head for the Dentavii Belt,” he said as he absently touched the lightsaber hilt attached to his hip.
“Yes, sir,” the young human said.
“I need to prepare myself for what is to come. I believe I have old enemies that are closer than I would have expected. I hope you are well trained Corporal. Let me know when we arrive.”
The former Aedile stood and moved back into the holding bay of the ship. He knelt and let the memories of his past flood him. The fire of the Dark Side roared and Maelous drew from it.
strong textUnknown Location
Jades finger absently drew symbols in the dirt. She didn’t know what they meant, it was more a release for her subconscious. Though if she had to guess, she would say they were lost alchemy symbols Macron must have shown her. She rolled onto her back, her one arm draped over her abdomen while the other stretched out across the ground. Something reached out to her in the force.
The force was playing tricks on her. It sounded like Maelous. She wondered what he could be doing now. Perhaps on a mission, searching for something he found in the library like the day she had met him…Jade smirked, or maybe he was polishing his helmet. Not now Mal Bot, I’m trying to sleep. Though she knew her mind was playing tricks on her, it helped to distract from the pain a bit.
Footsteps vibrated the ground through the force, the only sense she still listened too. They were coming back for her. If only she knew who they were or what they wanted…ahhh hell, if she had the energy left it didn’t matter who they were, she would still rip their throats out and sharpen her claws on their bones. Jade closed her eyes, picturing her revenge as the door to her cell opened, spilling a crack of light across the floor.
Maelous peered over the top of a rock formation that looked down on the entrance to a well hidden facility. Had he not had the slowly growing pull to this place he may never have noticed it. The Battlemaster watched as a few figures moved crossed the path as they continued their patrol. He couldn’t quite put a finger on it but something about them seemed familiar.
He stood and looked down the rocky landscape. His mind opening to the Force for guidance. He began to make his way to the facility entrance. He gave no consideration that he was not concealed. He he could feel the collection of emotions, thoughts, and pain in the back of his mind growing stronger.
As he neared the camouflaged structure a second patrol appeared. “Halt!” yelled one of the armored beings. The helmeted Sith stopped and turned to face the trio as they approached him. The animalistic helmets, and bright red armor marked them as his former brothers. The three drew and ignited their sabers and Maelous grinned behind his helmet.
“Name,” one of the three demanded.
Maelous remained silent for a moment, then tilted his head to the side for a moment watching for the Jensaraai to make a move. Unfortunately, they waited to long for his liking. His lightsaber was in his hand and glowing in a hearts beat, as his mechanical legs propelled him forward. The Sith howled with delight as he began to cut into the members of his former order.
Jades body bounced off the floor as they tossed her back into her cell. She moaned, forcing herself to put her arms underneath her and pull her body weight up. But she was too weak, her arms gave out and she fell back on the dirt covered floor, the brown dust staining her now pale red lips. She rolled over onto her back, and thought she heard a crack of thunder. Hoping it would mean water, she pictured herself rolling towards the wall. But her body didn’t move. She tried again, even envisioned herself doing it, but it turned out to be nothing but a dream. She groaned and squeezed her eyes shut, hoping it would keep her conscious enough to move. This time she felt her body roll once…twice…and then rest against the cracked mud wall. Sighing, she let her body rest. A flash of red dancing animals entered her dreams. She laughed at herself. Being half Cathar, seeing animals didn’t seem totally strange to her. The feeling of pouncing and the hum of a saber followed the dancing animals, but just as soon as they appeared, they faded into blackness…or was it just her? Jade moaned, letting the pain wash her into the sleep.
Maelous deactivated his saber as another Defender’s body collapsed the ground. He looked over the handful of fallen Jensaraai for a moment. Why would they abduct Jade? he thought to himself.
Because you can’t seem to remember the circumstances as to why you fled that awful rock, the other voice in his mind said with a chuckle.
His metallic feet clicked on the stone as he growled at the voice in his mind. It had been less manic in the last few months. It was mad no doubt and he couldn’t tell if it was his own mind, or some sort of Force ghost manifest in his mind. It used the name of his old enemy but it didn’t seem to have the story straight.
He suppressed the voice again and focused on the Force and the bond he shared with Jade. He cat like features filled his mind. She was in great pain and he could smell her blood.
His saber ignited as another man in red armor entered the corridor ahead of him. The guards yellow blade saber flared to life as Maelous’ clashed against it. He grinned behind his helmet.
“Almost,” he whispered, his voice coming through the speakers like rattled chains. He spun and swung the the blade toward the Jensaraai’s head. The Defender brought his yellow blade up to block, as the Battlemaster had anticipated, he pulled the the attack and brought the blade around in an arc, it’s tip piercing the man’s heart.
He looked at the fallen man for a moment then moved on. This had been too easy, they were barely putting up an resistance, and none had found a body and triggered an alarm yet, something wasn’t right.
You know it’s a trap, right? the voice in his head chided.
Yes, I know, Maelous thought with a bit of annoyance.
The voice laughed manically as the Sith moved around a corner. The laughter stopped and Maelous suddenly felt her, she was right behind the door at the end of the hall. He sprinted the remaining distance and almost sliding to a halt. He looked over the large frame, the door itself, and it’s locks. It all looked like old fashioned mechanical parts. Maelous ignited his crimson blade once more. He slid the humming blade through the metal of the door and began to cut it it away.
Jade heard something odd. She wasn’t sure how to explain it… like metal on a grated walk way. Vibrations followed the sounds. They got stronger, coming towards her. Jade groaned and rolled over, forcing her body to prop herself up against the dirt wall. The tip of her tongue licked her dry cracked lips. “hmmmm, coming for me again I see…” Her one arm still draped over her side and abdomen, a subconscious protection to help with the pain. Her fingers of the other hand dug into the dirt, the cool earth feeling good beneath her fingertips.
A faint hum hit her ears, a sound she recognized but didn’t at the same time. She moaned, her mind playing tricks on her. She swore she felt Maelous brush her memories. "Hmmm Mael bot, I’ll haunt you when they kill me." She giggled. "**Your helmet will be forever hiding."** Her fingers hit something hard. Jade blinked and looked down, her fingers digging deeper. She pulled out a smaller rock and sighed. She could fight back, though she would have to wait for just the right time.
The door to her cell suddenly creaked and fell to the floor with a thud. She closed her eyes. Though they had never entered like that before, she didn’t put it past them to make her think she was being rescued.
Maelous waved some dust away from the air around his helmet as the door hit the ground. He could feel Jade, she felt weak. His eyes scanned the small cell and found her propped up against the wall, her one arm draped across her body, the other limp to the side, the ground around her stained red from her blood. “Jade!”
The voice sounded familiar, but she wouldn’t fall for it. She stayed against the wall, saving her strength.
Maelous ran into the room, his saber sheathing itself as he knelt beside her. “Jade. Jade wake up.” She didn’t move. Maelous reached out to brush a streak of red from her cheek when he felt the force shudder. He turned round, his saber igniting in a flash as he spun. The guard sneered at him. His saber connecting with Maelous’s. Any other time Maelous would have enjoyed the chance to take some revenge, but right now, he wanted to get Jade out of the damp blood soaked cell. He used the force to send a push towards the guard, and swung out with his arm, then kneeling, he swung back with his blade, slicing the guard in half as he did. Maleous watched the body drop to the ground in two pieces. As he was about to stand he felt something smack him in the back of his helmet. He turned around to see Jade fall to her knees behind him, the rock she had hit him with now rolling in the dirt.
“You won’t trick me!” Jade blinked at the figure in front of her, doing her best not to collapse to the ground. Her breathing was shallow and gaspy. If this was going to be her last battle, she was going to fight as much as she could.
Maelous forced the rage down as the voice in his mind laughed manically; he wished he could strangle it. His eyes moved over Jade’s weak and beaten form to help stifle the blood boiling in his veins. He stood and clipped his saber to his belt.
“Jade, try and calm…” she cut him off.
“Stay back,” she croaked, her dry throat making her voice rough, “I’m not stupid, it will take more than a costume.” She stumbled slightly
The Sith shook his head, he did quite understand why this Cathar had the ability to make him hesitate , I could just knock her out, he thought but he knew he wouldn’t do that, at least not to her. He tilted his head to the side watching her and tapped his mechanical legs.
“Does this look like a costume?” he asked.
Her eyes seemed to go in and out of focus as she watched him. Slowly she lifted her fists as if to fight him. The Berserker sighed and shook his head, tapping at the holopad mounted to his left bracer. There was a hiss and that made Jade jump slightly. The motors in his helmet whirred softly as the sealing mechanism of Maelous’ helmet disengaged.
Slowly, he pulled the helmet off his head revealing his bald head and beard. He looked over him taking in his features, the corruption around and in his eyes, and the electrical scars running down the side of his face.
She sighed, “Oh Mael-bot.” Her legs gave out then and she collapsed. He moved to her and knelt next to her exhausted body.
“We should go,” he said.
Jade collapsed to the ground, the strength to fight gone the moment Maelous Removed his helmet. If she had the strength…Jade smiled, it wouldn’t be easy but…Reaching out with the force, with the little strength she had left she floated his helmet up beside him. “I can’t believe you took this off.” She laughed but it sounded more like a sigh. His helmet falling back to the ground beside him.
“I had too, you wouldn’t believe it was me.”
Jade smiled. “Who says I do now? You could be a very interesting hallucination.”
Maelous frowned, he had never seen her like this. She looked weak, her body beaten. Though she still had the will to fight, he could see her mind was suffering the effects of her body’s injuries and the constant interrogation. “I know you don’t really think that.”
Jade looked up at the wall she had so many times propped herself up against to get sips of water as it rained. Even if he was really a hallucination, it would be far more interesting to go with him then to stay in the dirt cell she had been in.
“We really do need to get going.”
Jade got to her knees, and put her hand out. Maelous took it and helped her up. Catching her as her legs wobbled beneath her. She had obviously been dragged from the cell and not allowed much room for movement. Her hand brushed his saber. “I’m going to need a weapon.”
Maelous wasn’t sure she should be given one in her condition, but he understood the need for protection. After all, a lightsaber was the extension of a Dark Jedi’s body. Using the force he picked up the saber form the guard that had attacked him in the cell, and handed it to her. Jade looked at it first before taking it from him. It was hard for her to hold on to it, but having something in her hand helped her to remember she wasn’t just dreaming she was walking with him.
As they started walking out of the cell Maelous felt the force shiver, the voice in his head laughed. How could you have not realized it was a trap?
The lights in the hallway went out, leaving one at the end that opened to the creaking of a metal door. Jade leaned against him, then stood up. “We aren’t really going to go in there are we?”
“You don’t have a choice!”
Jade jumped as two guards came up behind them.
Maelous moved without thought as the guards came up from the rear. He spun around Jade, his saber springing to life in his hand; the crimson blade batting away a cyan one and then an emerald one. His yellow eyes assessed the two Jensaarai as the anger and hatred for his former compatriots boiled inside, fueling him.
“Who commands here?” the Sith growled.
The guard with a cyan blade spoke, “Ro’saar,” his vaguely Sleen looking helmet tilted slightly, “Maelous, it doesn’t have to be like this. Come to Susevfi and face the punishment for your crime.”
“She attacked me!” the former Jensaraai roared, punctuating every word.
Jade’s weary eyes passed from the helmed guards to Maelous, she had never seen him this angry before. There was obviously some secret there that she did not know, and she filed that away for later.
His rage came in great waves washing him in energy. With the Force permeating his every muscle, he sprung forward. The Ragnosian brought the blood red blade back and swing out in a wide arc. The Sleen helmeted guard clashed against the onslaught.
Maelous ducked and brought his blade up to block the attacking cyan blade. His left arm crossing under his right sending a powerful blast of Force energy into the the other guards stomach, sending the being flying into the wall. Maelous regained his footing and whirled the blade into a downward strike. The guard stumbled back and the Sith pushed forward with quick strong attacks, continuing to draw on the Force to increase his strength and agility.
With a deft motion Maelous reached into the pouch with his left hand and produced several of the durasteel pyramids. He seized them in his mind while continuing to attack the guard with his saber. The small objects hovered in the air for a moment then shot forward, three of them peppered the armored chest of the Defender, but one tore through the being’s neck. Blood sprayed out as the guard dropped his saber and reached for his throat. Maelous lept forward bringing the humming blade of his saber up at an angle across the guard’s face.
He watched the body drop to the floor then heard the hum of a lightsaber at his back. He spun as the second guard fell to the ground, his head rolling across the floor and coming to rest at Maelous’ feet. Jade, with the point of a yellow saber blade pointing down, looked up at the Sith Battlemaster and smiled weakly. She may have been tortured nearly to death, but she wasn’t about to give up now.
Jade smiled, her fingers shaking against the lightsaber as she fought with her own strength to hold onto it. The soft vibrations of the blade going through her palm, but she managed to hold it still. She watched as Maelous looked down at the head as it hit his boot then up at her. “Assuming you aren’t just my imagination, consider it a gift.” She chuckled.
Maelous frown a bit behind his mask, did she really think he was still just a figment of her tortured mind? “We need to get out of here.”
As he walked towards her Jade looked back towards where the one guard had looked at him. Her eyebrows furrowed. “Do you know these ‘things?’” She kicked her toe against the body next to her.
Maelous wasn’t sure how he felt about her referring to them as ‘things.’ Having been on the pay roll at one time part of him wanted to take it as an insult. But he had grown much more since then, they he also wanted to laugh it off. “They use a trick to try and turn you against me.”
Jade brought the saber up, the humming blade blocking his path. He could have easily deflected it or pushed it out of the way but he just stopped in front of it. “You can’t lie to me Mael bot.”
Maelous stood there for a moment, the yellow blade reflecting off his armour. He just looked forward for a while. She doesn’t need to know. Don’t let her get close. The voice in his head whispered, almost afraid of allowing him to get close to someone, as though it would make it harder for him to be controlled.But with her body in a state of needing dire medical care, and her mind still split between reality and torture, he wasn’t sure if he should tell her he use to be part of them, not just part of them, but part of this particular group. If she didn’t trust he was real now, how would she feel after he told her that he did know that guard.
Jade wrist shook and she felt her arm start to slide down, her strength waning. “I’m waiting!” Thankfully she still sounded strong.
Maelous sighed. “Yes. I use to fight along side him.”
Jade looked around at the guards on the floor. Lowering the blade she de-activated it. “Bet you are glad you don’t right now.” She winked at him but didn’t know if he saw or not.
Maelous smirked behind his mask.
Jade looked at the various helmets on the ground and thought about how attached to his helmet Maelous was. “What helmet animal did you wear?” She took his arm as he helped her to start moving down the hall again. As they turned she looked down at one helmet in the shape of a Raquor’daan. Using the force she called the helmet to her and, making sure it was empty of the head that once owned it, she slipped it on and looked at him. Making little predator hunting motions with her body. Then howled “Ahooooooooooooooo.”
Maelous nearly burst out laughing as the fanged head turned towards him as though asking him a question and then howled. Though he couldn’t believe of all the helmets that she would pick that one, perhaps it was something in their bond that told her to pick that one. But as she pretended to stalk imaginary prey beside him he couldn’t help but notice how it seemed to fit her perfectly.
“That vile thing, I was using as my personal torture play thing, should not be so disrespectful and wearing that helmet. You should remove her head for wearing it Maelous. Restore the honour it deserves.”
Maelous turned his head back towards the open door at the end of the hallway as the voice growled in anger. Narrowing his gaze Maelous stood protectively in front of Jade. “Looks to me like she is the only one honouring the strength, perseverance, and loyalty of a Raquor’daan.”
The man growled, then grinned, knowing how to get under Maelous’s skin. “That makes one of you two.”