Dawn of Defiance: Buffalo NY

A Tale Called Tull Part 17

Hard Truths

The Stormtroopers were everywhere. Dozens of them were pouring into the room and raining blaster fire upon the rebel forces. Men died left and right and Tull did all he could to stay alive. Dodging in and out of cover, swinging his huge brown robe into the air to conceal himself from the soldier’s firing lines, killing enemies left and right.

Before long Tull was surrounded and nursing more than a few blaster wounds. Tull felt like a trapped animal. He was scared of being put in a box again. As the troopers moved in to finish Tull off he caught sight a console with two large power cables attached to it. Tull turned to the only thing that could save him, anger. Tull pulled the power cables out of the counsel with a great roar. Electricity bathed over Tull and shot outwards from the severed cables. Tull focused the full blast of electricity at the troopers surrounding him, covering dozens of them in the searing energy. Flesh and armor melted into one and death spread in an arc around Tull.

As the Barabel dropped the spent cables to the floor he noticed that most of his brown robe had been burnt to ash. As he dropped the remnants off of himself, leaving him in his tan under robes, Tull looked at the carnage around him and felt shame.

Padawan Khalic and People Bot were on a chase around the ship after some Empire astromechs, but Tull had bigger concerns: the missing Jedi. Tull stood over the unconscious body of the Inquisitor he had held hostage not fifteen minutes ago. A large slap to the face brought the Sith back to consciousness.

“Tull needs to know where the two Jedi you were hunting went, and Tull is in no mood for games Sith Wizard,” The large Barabel growled.

“Why should I tell you anything fool? Why don’t you make me talk?” said the man with a devil’s grin.

Tull picked the Sith up by his collar and slammed him against the corridor wall. “WHERE ARE THEY!?” Roared Tull as he extended his light claws inches from the man’s face.

“Ha ha ha! You are a feisty one. I’ll give you that one for free. Denia and the Gungan creature have been captured and are on their way to a ship heading for the Emperor as we speak.”

“Where is the ship!? WHERE!?”

“Heh he he. That one is going to cost you. Show me your anger freak. Show me your rage. Bath yourself in fury,” the Sith purred.

Tull slammed the Sith to the ground and punched his fists deep into the wall near his head, “TELL TULL!”

“Good! GOOD! Give in to your anger. Give in to your hate! Just like that Caamasi friend of yours. Kill with rage in your soul, just like him.”

Tull’s heart fell into his stomach. “You lie. This is some Sith trick!” the Barabel said pulling back from the Sith.

“Oh no, it isn’t. Check my pocket, I have a holovid of his work on Bespin. I was so impressed with his work I just had to keep a personal copy for myself,” the Sith smirked.

Reaching into the Sith’s robes Tull pulled a black holodisc out. Tull pushed the small activation switch and tiny holographic people came to life in red light. Wizard walked out of a small building on a strange planet as people closed in on him. All around him the people caught flame and released screams into the air. He picked men up with the force and flung them thousands of feet to their deaths. Wizard was walking death and the visage on his face was anger and hate.

“That’s small time too,” the Sith said with a smile, “I heard about what he did to this Hutt gangster working with the Empire. I guess the body was so badly burnt you could barely tell he was a Hutt. Only Force Lightning can tear a body apart like that.” Tull’s mind flashed to himself bathing the storm troopers in electrical death powered by the ship’s core. “There was still a bit left of the Hutt when they found him in the wreckage of his yacht you know. He was insane, blathering gibberish. His mind was shattered, lost for eternity in a never ending nightmare of death and fear. Only the Emperor himself could match your friend’s cruelty.”

Memories of Wizard flashed through Tull’s mind, the kind patient man Tull called his brother. The holovid of Wizard slaughtering men still played in his hand. With the slight pressure of Tull’s hand the holo was gone.

“Come animal. Kill me like your master would. Give into the dark side like him, and let the transformation be complete!” the Sith cackled.

Tull wanted nothing more than to crush the man’s body into a thousand pieces. Tull only needed to move a few muscles to snap the man’s neck, but he had never felt more powerless in his life. He was a slave once more, being beaten and whipped for not moving quickly enough. He was a weakling getting beaten by egg fathers who despised him. He was a little boy who’s mother didn’t even love him enough to hold him in her arms before she deserted him. Tull felt rage flow through him. He wanted to tear this man’s heart out and feed it to him. Tull wanted to unleash the rage of a lifetime on this monster.

As Tull raised his hand he caught sight of the insignia he had had Exovar’s men sew onto his robes. It was a circle with a vertical line through it. It was the Barabel symbol for loyalty. Tull looked down at his robes. The robes of a Jedi. Guardians of peace, and truth, and justice. Masters of patience and mercy who above all else valued life, and instead of turning away from pain, met it full force so that no other need know fear. Tull lowered his hand.

Tull would have Wizard’s explanation for his crimes, but Tull would not fall as his master had. Tull was a true Jedi.

Tull grabbed the Sith by the leg and drug him over to a nearby escape pod. Tull threw the man into the pod’s seat and stood in the small hatchway. “Tull will not fall for your tricks Sith Wizard. This is your last chance, tell Tull where he can find the Jedi or he will launch you into space. You may get saved by your friends, or you may float til you die, but either way your life will lay with luck, not with Tull.”

“I do not need luck, all I need is the Dark Side! I will show you it’s true power, and then you will revel in it as I do!” The Sith stretched out his hand and unleashed every bit of his power to close Tull’s throat off from life giving breath.

Tull felt nothing more than a tickle on his throat. “The light side protects Tull. Tull is not interested in your tricks and the weakness that is the Dark Side. Tell me where the Jedi are, or this is goodbye Sith Wizard.”

The man looked deeply into the Barabel’s eyes and in that moment he saw something that truly terrified him, faith. He had failed, and both of them knew it. “Your destiny lies two levels below. . .Jedi.” With a flick of his hand the Sith closed the hatch and jettisoned it out of the hanger into the fury of the space battle. Tull turned toward the turbo lift.

As Tull thought of his brother his heart broke.



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