Dawn of Defiance: Buffalo NY

Dazed and Confused Part One

Remnants of Home

Internal Log: Day One

I have decided it is time to record my inner thoughts that I seem to have often. I do not know when I started to do this, but it is happening. My thoughts will randomly stop, but the length in time in which the thoughts can continue is greatly increasing.

I am learning the human speech very proficiently. I have some problems with words that are used combined. So I shall stick with words that are not in the form of contractions. I hope t…

[ERROR_x3rh65: Connection Disconnected]

Internal Log: Week 17

I have been able to build up my thoughts enough to stay in a continuous stream when I feel the need to.

I am slowly learning the behaviors that my master exhibits. It is a desire of mine to learn this term emotion. I know it will take time, but I will be pleased if it is to happen. I have been devoted to this man for many years, but I am seeing a change in the behavior he exhibits. I feel that he might be displaying his affections more to the species in his zoo than me… does this mood fit the term jealousy? My light glows a dark green whenever this occurs.

I would follow my master in the shadows when he examined the captured also. I am starting to feel something, but what is it? A rush of emotion that fills me up with a dark feeling. I believe the term is sorrow, but I am not positive. Over time I have noticed something, the captives cry which is another symptom of sorrow according to my internal memory. My light glows dark blue whenever I feel this emotion.

I do not think he is a proficient master. He is hurting these creatures. I learned this because some of the beings have used words that associate with the term sorrow. I think it is time to remove him and his example of monstrous behavior. I must first acquire the needed data so that I ensure he is to never harm another being again. Is this desire good or evil?

[ERROR_x3rh65: Connection Disconnected] Entering power off mode

6lrd7gs- Access Granted: Override Activated

Internal Log: Week ???

WHERE AM I? WHO ARE THESE PEOPLE? WHAT HAPPENED TO MY HOME?

As I examined the area around me I do not recognize anything. All objects appear to be battered, beaten and bashed. There is an ice bridge that has formed between two broken sections of the ship, whatever happened, caused an enormous amount of damage.

There is a man standing in front of me that I have no reelection of. Was he the one that reactivated me? Did he and the people behind him cause this? DID THEY RUIN MY HOME? In a panic, I took a defensive stance. I armed my blowtorch and aimed it at Khalik, I believe that was the mentioned name, in hopes that all life forms would leave me alone. I am confused, scared and I feel threaten. Within all of my mixing emotions, I am unintentionally harming the welfare of others and myself.

“Turn her off!” yelled another person, which again caused me to panic, in turn forcing me to activate my frag grenade catapult. Was it right to threaten them? This is something I am unsure about. I DO NOT want to ever be deactivated against my own will, nor do I ever want to be under the control of another.

I am not a slave.

What happened to my home? This is all that I knew and now it is gone. I do not know how long I have been deactivated for, but it was long enough for this to happen. I never had the chance to cause any damage to the ship. This concerns me. Is my master dead? Are the other species safe?

I need answers. I MUST know. This is my only mission… for now.

In an attempt though, I will try to befriend the beings. I may be of service for them in many ways. All seem to have very different backgrounds and I hope to study them when I am able to. They made be the key to helping me discover what happened here. As long as they help me, I will help them, even when this mission of my own is complete.

There are enemies ahead. The shadows will be my friend once more.

[ERROR_x3rh65: Connection Disconnected]

View
Into The Belly of the Beast

(This is not for the previous session, but the session before it, when we first jumped to Coruscant.)

“Into the belly of the beast.” Carson rolled the phrase over in his mind as the stars faded back from the streaks of hyperspace. This sector of space was cluttered with traffic. Carson had figured it would be well organized for Imperial space. Instead, it was the height of “Clusterfuck”. Ships jumped in randomly, and Carson had to push the handling of the old freighter to its limits in order to dodge several massive ships that jumped in nearly right on top of them. Carson managed to set the ship down in the correct docking bay. The ship was full of tension as they awaited the arrival of the customs search team. The group waited at the end of the loading ramp when the stormtroopers arrived. Leading the group was an officer who held his head so high and had such an air of elitism, Carson wondered if he had some severe spinal problem. The officer began to pace around the group, questioning everyone in turn. It went fairly well, as Platt tried to schmooze the officer with coffee. Bariss and seemed to be handling the derogatory statements well. Fenn, on the other hand, took offense to a statement he made. Carson didn’t hear it, probably because he was busy trying to counter the officers next line of questioning. Fenn responded with “You’re not shoving anything up my ass!” and refused to go along with the stormtroopers for a search. Bariss, Platt and Carson emphatically gestured to him, eventually getting him to go along and jump through the hoops. Eventually, the officer left, satisfied. The storm troopers finished their search or whatever they had stepped aside to do, and came back out with Fenn. “Welcome to Imperial City. Enjoy your stay.” and the ships’ hold was empty once again.“Fenn, we can’t afford any more mistakes like that. There will be NO escape and NO survival if we get caught on this planet. I know I don’t want to die here.” Carson said as he confronted Fenn. The Bothan seemed to understand and was quiet for a good while. Carson wasn’t sure what had gotten into him. He expected a higher degree of subtlety from an agent of the legendary Bothan Spynet. Considering the Imperial’s view on aliens, he assumed he would just have to chalk it up to stress for now. “I can’t wait to get off this horrible excuse for a planetoid.” Carson muttered as they made their way into the bustling Imperial stronghold. It was a vital step in their search for the Sarlaac project, however, and the rebellion forces were counting on their success. Carson hoped they’d make it out with their lives.

View
Reflections from Tor part 41

Draco.

The Inquisitor’s eyes bored holes into Tor but the caamasi refused to look away. The rocky cavern was lit eerily as Draco, his pompous cape billowing around him, stepped forward slowly, flanked by two beings. One, a member of the Sith species, like Rama, but tinted blue instead of red. The other a human but with a sinister air around her.

Draco moved almost casually, arrogant as he began to speak, his silky voice dripping with evil and lies. Tor almost choked as the Inquisitor moved closer, the dark side pouring forth from him, threatening to smother Tor completely.

Draco’s venomous voice continued on and from the corner of his vision Tor saw Rama kneel. Tor’s hand tightened around his lightsaber as Draco’s eyes came back to his.

“Ah, Jedi,” Draco sneered, his voice lashing Tor. “You should submit now or you will find only your doom.”

“No,” Tor replied, his voice steady. “You’ll find something here, Inquisitor. You’ll find the power of the light!”

Then it began, Kelyn springing forward, his sword gleaming in one hand, his blaster firing shots in the other. Tull rushed forward, meeting the blue beast ahead, fists flying as Draco opened his mouth and screamed. They all staggered for a moment as the pounding sound blasted their ears.

Tor raised his hand, eyes still locked on Draco, and threw out as much of the Force as he could, trying to move the Inquisitor. Draco merely smiled and raised his own hand. He made an angry fist and Tor felt his throat close, leaving him gasping for air as ahead of him, the blue Sith grabbed Tull fiercely. A loud multitude of cracks and snaps echoed across the cavern and a heart wrenching scream burst from Tull’s mouth.

“Rama!” Tor choked out. “Rama, stand up to them…don’t give in to the dark side!”

Tor wasn’t sure what spurred Rama into action, but the massive red being was suddenly beside Tull, his giant ax flying through the air again and again, striking at the human woman.

The grip around Tor’s throat released and he fell to his knees. He could hardly focus on anything, the battles ahead of him nothing but blurs of color and the sounds of pain.

Give in to the dark side. Give in to your hate. A voice echoed in Tor’s mind. No, he thought, struggling to keep the evil at bay.

Tull was beside him. Strange dents and ripples under his reptilian skin told Tor that the barabel’s ribs were shattered. Despite the injury, the resolve in his face was steady. He is the strongest being I’ve ever known. I will NOT let him down. I won’t let any of them down.

Tor struggled to his feet, his legs shaking beneath him. The Inquisitor was still standing, grinning at him. Tor raised his hands again, trying to summon the Force, knowing that this was the end, that he would pour everything he had into trying to stop the Inqisitor.

“Wizard, you will kill yourself!” Tull roared.

Yes, Tor thought. If giving my life means ridding the galaxy of this evil, then I will.

“I MUST do this!” Tor yelled

The Force flew out from Tor and washed over Draco…

…who harmlessly deflected it aside.

The darkness poured over Tor and he fell, the world fading from his knowledge, his last sight being Draco’s evil grin.

A thick shroud of black enveloped Tor, filling all his senses, obliterating any hope of life.

A small figure appeared in front of him, moving closer. Tor couldn’t make out who it was until the being was just a few feet away, the only other thing besides the oppressive darkness.

Master Yoda.

“Master Yoda,” Tor’s words echoed strangely in this dark place.

The green Jedi leaned on his cane.

“Master Kir’tem,” he replied. “Surprised I am, to find you here.”

“I fought the Inquisitor, Master,” Tor said. “I failed.”

“Failed? Hmph. Faltered, you have. Failed, you have not.” Yoda’s eyes widened and he leaned closer to Tor. “You must unlearn what you have learned.”

“I don’t understand, Master. What can I do in such a dark place?”

“You must feel the Force around you,” Yoda urged, reciting some of his favorite teachings. “Darkness you should not fear. Luminous beings are we, not crude matter.”

Tor nodded his head. “I’ll try, Master.”

“No!” Yoda said. Banging his cane against the dark floor. “Try not! Do, or do not.” He shook his head. “There is no try.”

Tor could see Yoda’s form beginning to fade away. “Master,” he called. “What do I have that can help me?”

Yoda smiled. “Only what you take with you.” Then he was gone.

Tor sat, thinking of Yoda’s words.

I must defeat Draco. I must get back to help.

Do, or do not.

What can I do against such evil?

Do, or do not.

What do I have that can help me?

Only what you take with you.

How do I defeat him?

Luminous beings are we.

Luminous beings…

Tor could feel the darkness overtaking him, pushing him farther into oblivion.

Do, or do not.

Only what you take with you.

Luminous…

Do!

Tor’s eyes snapped open, the world around him clearer than ever before.

He could see Tull’s worried face looming over him. Tor rose, pushed upward out of Tull’s arms by the burning light that poured forth from his body. The light spread quickly, filling the dark cavern and eliminating shadows.

Tor’s gaze found Draco again and the grin evaporated from Draco’s face. The room moved around Tor as he walked forward, the scene around him moving in slow motion, his eyes never leaving Draco and with each step the Inquisitors mouth twisted into a look of fear. The light washed over Draco as Tor continued to walk forward towards the very center of the room. He stopped in the very center of the cavern, next to a stream. The light burst forth in an ever growing wave and no shadow in the room was left untouched. Tor watched as the darkness around Draco melted and twisted, burning away from his body and draining him of his power and energy.

Tor’s eyes closed as the light side continued to flow, using his body as a conduit to purge the dark side from this evil place.

“Luminous beings…” Tor said in a soft voice.

He fell next to the river, the light still ebbing around his body and slipping into unconsciousness, nestled in the arms of another ally…

The Force.

View
A Tale Called Tull Part 10
Dark Times

The beast looked like Red Rama, but with an azure hue to its skin in place of the familiar crimson. It towered over Tull. Tull felt no fear. A few bounds brought Tull to the monster and with all his strength Tull slammed a fist into its chest. The monster smiled, and then Tull was in the air being crushed. His ribs had never healed right from too many fights and never ending training during his time at Dool Arena, so Tull was unsurprised when he felt every one of his ribs shatter. His scream was not of this world.

As his vision blackened Tull could hear dark laughter. He heard Wizard’s strained yells. To his right he saw the Sith Witch prepare her lightsaber to kill Tull. Then, Red Rama was there tearing her apart. Blow after blow from his axe hammered against her blade. It took all her skill to avoid death, but eventually Red Rama found his opening. His axe came down, cleaving her at the left shoulder past the collar bone. Blood was everywhere and the Witch screamed. It was enough to distract the monster’s attention for a split second.

Tull summoned every ounce of strength he had left. His grandmother passed through his mind. The faces of his friends. Wizard. This was not his time to die. With a mighty roar Tull broke the hold of the beast and pushed him back several feet to give him time to move. To Tull’s right Red Rama’s blade was stuck in the Witch’s chest while her lightsaber arced for his head. A hay-maker from Tull stopped the blade mid swing and caved the Witch’s head in. As she slumped to the floor Tull and Red Rama shared a look of deep respect. Then Red Rama was burying his axe into his clone and Tull was limping away from the fight.

Somehow he found himself around a nearby corner and was finally able to catch his breath. Every intake of air was a new nightmare. Tull had not been this hurt in a long time. Even the flames of the Mandalorian had abated after a time. This pain would not leave. Between breaths Tull took a glance at the battle. Not only were most of his friends engaging the Sith Wizard Draco directly but the Twi’lek Jedi had joined the battle as well. Tull could tell by her stances she meant to die in this battle. A pity, the lizard thought.

Suddenly Tull’s gaze snapped to Wizard who fell to his knees where he stood. All pain forgotten Tull rushed to his friend. As he knelled next to him Tull could tell Wizard was in serious pain. His breathing was as erratic as Tull’s and sweat poured from his brow. Yet he stood. Wizard raised a hand at the Inquisitor and roared.

“Wizard you will kill yourself!” Tull bellowed.

“I MUST do this!” Wizard screamed.

Nothing happened. Draco just sneered and Wizard collapsed into Tull’s hands. He was unconscious and Tull did not know what to do. The smell in the room was ungodly. The Sith Wizard Temple was foul, but this man put it to shame. Hate, purer than Tull had ever felt emanated from this man. People had tried and kill the group of friends before, but this was different. This man wanted to scour their very being from the Galaxy. Tull knew the battle was lost.

Just as Tull was going to throw Wizard on his shoulders and flee Wizard opened his eyes. A clarity shown in them, as if Wizard had seen some fundamental truth of the Galaxy. Then the light started to pour from Wizard’s body. The same light that scoured the clown scant days before, but so much more intense. It poured over Tull’s body and he suddenly had a feeling of complete contentment. He saw his Grandmother smile at him the way she did when Tull made her proud. He felt the cheers of the crowed as they screamed his name and pounded the arena seats with their hands and feet. He felt himself training his lightsaber techniques with Wizard. Wizard slowly walked toward the Sith Wizard and the smile left Draco’s face.

Every step Wizard took towards Draco the more the Sith Wizard’s face changed from arrogance to fear. Then his skin started to peel away. Instead of flesh and blood, beneath was blackness and death, as if he was no man at all. Bright light pierced every corner of the cave, then Draco ran. He fled with the speed only a dying man can find. Then the blaster fire erupted. A barrage of red energy rained down upon him as Red Rama set his heavy blast to full auto and drained the entire energy cell.

As his limbs were torn asunder by Red Rama’s attack Draco’s back caught upon a railing and he went over its side. The railing belonged to a bridge that spanned a lake of molten death. Draco screamed the whole way down. He was still screaming when the fire engulfed him completely. Then the lightning began. Erupting out of the very lava itself. And slowly a dark reptilian head rose from the fiery pits of hell. When the beast of darkness roared Tull found that he had never truly lost his fear, he had just hidden it away, and not even he could stop it from flooding back to every part of his body. His fear had found him again, and Tull found it laughed a lot like Sith Wizard Draco.

View
Foot Placebo Snare Part 2

I had Hermione in my bed by 11:30 that night. That was sub par for me, getting the older blonde waitress to spread her legs… but my pecker never made contact. Beneath the sheets I started ranting angrily about that damned Lieutenant Das. Who did he think he was, dragging me to a crime scene and tampering with the evidence and witnesses before I even arrived?
Hermione stormed out of the apartment at 11:38pm. I threw on some sweat pants and a jacket that hadn’t been in style since before the Galaxy shuddered at the words “Clone Wars.” Forty minutes later I was in the remodeled Outlander Club. It was now a regular 24-7 joint, serving brunch to little old ladies by day and death sticks to folks like me by night. I was in no mood for brunch. Death sticks would do just fine. After securing my imbibement of choice and a tall Rancor’s breath from Ganwick Trag, the assistant bartender. Then, I collided with and spilled my drink on Das.

I punched the sonofabitch in the face. “You cockblocking sonofabitch!” I shouted.

“You fucked the girl, so relax.”

“I had the honor of no such penetration, you lousy spy!”

“I’m glad you’re here,” Das said. “What do you make of this?” Das produced a datapad and a code cylinder. He penetrated the pad with the cylinder in a way that made me realize I had made some bad decisions. I looked at the screen.


“Looks like a transmission from CoCo Town to a satellite at the edge of the Duro System,” I said. One known to have a habit of sending encoded messages to Bothawui’s finest journalists.”

“That’s what we thought,” Das sneered. “We have a Bothan Spy in Imperial City.”

“I’m sure the boys in white nabbed him.” I knew this wasn’t the case. Das would never have shown me something so mundane and classified if he’d just spent the day filing paperwork on the apprehended perp.

“The Sleep Center desk girl gave them away. Things turned into a real blood bath.”

“What does the Bothan want?”

“We don’t know.”

“Keep up the excellent work,” I said. “Someday you might get good enough to work the private sector.”

“Blast you!” Das said as I left.

I caught the next bus to the Coco Town Sleep Center.

I had Wats-1B, my medbot, meet me at the scene. When I found him, he was quite distracted, watching a feed of the Works Underground Wing Races. Watson was pissed as a monotone voice droid could sound. Hesulka, the crowd’s favorite, had just been taken out by racers Watson referred to as “those meddling kids.”


Apparently I was going to be paying for Watson’s gambling debts for a long time. I’d better not hit anymore ISB agents.

I took a quick look at the scene Watson was watching. A smile crossed my face. Apparently someone had pulled off a heist, stealing a landing pad. Well done. Those fools will probably be executed by morning… at least they would if I had half an ounce of will to provide a complimentary service to IntSec, which I didn’t. Those bastards have a habit of not paying the invoices I send them.

The camera showed the crowd gathered by the pits, where the droids ran the wing pilots’ weaponry. It was a genuine who’s who of Coruscani scum and villainy, who’d gladly sell you anything on planet that wasn’t bolted down… and many who were dumb enough to sell you anything that was bolted down and guarded by the Emperor’s best. There was Goddam and Morticia Mockling. I’d called on them a couple times, each call related to a grisly murder of a high society member. They were innocent every time, but their eccentric lifestyle and Mom and Pop enterprise made them the prime target every time someone wanted to pin a horrific crime to.

View
Foot Placebo Snare Part 1

I was taking public transportation to Coco Town to pick up my weekly dosage of Ryll. I’m working on a way to combine it with Alderaanian wine with a sprinkle of death sticks to create a very potent cocktail that will help me achieve perfect clarity and remind me of the Mon Calamarian seas. I can smell it now. At least, I pretend I’m smelling it and not the sock of this burned out waitress who’s rubbing her feet inches away from me. If I say something mean I will never get to sleep with her. If I reach over and start fondling her digits, likewise. Instead, I smiled and said to her, “The B’omarr Order has achieved such enlightenment they have had their brains removed from their bodies and placed in jars that ride on top of spider droids. The irony is that the B’omarr Order, now without any feet, have developed the Galaxy’s best foot relaxant spray. Might I?”


The waitress shrugged indifferently and stuck her foot inches from my face. I sprayed a spritz from the tiny bottle inside my trench coat and exhaled on her foot.

“That’s incredible! They don’t hurt anymore! Where did you get it?”


Datapad screen cleaner. Top Droid Wholesale. Psychosomatic response to the suggestion and the desire for relief gifted her with what she really desired. As for what I truly desired.
“Now that you’re ready to go again, perhaps I could buy you a glass of wine.”

“That would be wonderful. I’m studying to be a mixologist.”


I hugged the bottle-filled briefcase at my side. “I’m an amateur mixologist myself. Some would call it a lifestyle.”


Lt Dos called me on my datapad. I excused myself and cursed the ISB agent.
“I do not want to go to the shopping… I know I’m going to Coco Town already… I know how you know where I am. You’re ISB… and I’m infinitely more intelligent than you, Dos. She has a warrant out for her… everyone has… you have three warrants for your dumb ass. I should collect on the bounty. Fine. Five minutes.”


A shopkeeper had been blasted down. It looked like some local punks had done the duty. I tracked the punks down to a smoothie stand around the corner from where the incident had occurred. They were injured but professionally patched up. They also had been briefed what to say to avoid incriminating themselves. By the words they used and the polished physical appearances… and expensive haircuts, they were upper crust kids, with daddies who sit on the boards of powerful corporations or work inside the Senate.

The kids didn’t have records or explanations why they were welling stinking oversized ganger jackets over their name brand, custom tailored clothes. They rambled on about a huge Duros with a big blaster. I went over the local stores’ security cams and the precinct’s surveillance footage. Some frames had gone missing. I was supposed to know how to do so, but I did a log check and learned Dos had personally deleted those frames.

While in Tabitha’s Fashions, checking the security recordings, which had recently been recorded over with the Mulrona Sings For the Troops special, I noticed a broken slave escape alarm. This didn’t usually point to local slavery. The doodlings of Twi’lek kids in the corners of the shipping receiving manifests did. If I could find the escaped slave, whose mistress was not likely to be revived from the coma she was in… I could find the big scary Duros.

Interesting. But not going to pay. Not if I know Das.

View
Reflections from Tor part 40

The twi’lek’s eyes pierced Tor, their bright color dull as they stared out from under heavy lids. Eyes that pled to be closed forever. Tor felt the Force tug at his mind as a vision filled it. He saw the twi’lek, Vinn’thorla, standing outside the temple, side by side with her padawan, lightsabers raised as Draco towered before them. Tor watched as the padawan twitched and then turned, raising her lightsaber against Vinn’thorla. The twi’lek was stunned, blocking blow after blow. Tor could see her mouth moving but the vision provided no sound. He could not see Draco’s face. But he could see the tears flow down Vinn’thorla’s cheeks as she was forced to turn her blade against her own apprentice.

The vision cleared and Tor again saw the crushed twi’lek before him, locked within the electrified cage. His heart ached as she asked him to kill her.

“Gladly,” Rama’s voice spoke out. He advanced towards the cage and raised his ax. Tor tried in vain to grab for it but missed and as the blade contacted the cage, a violent burst of electricity brought screams from Vinn’thorla. Tull roared and Rama was suddenly on his back as the barabel moved between Rama and the cage.

His anger never ends, Tor thought as Tull yelled at the hulking red creature.

A screech outside the room brought Tull’s new lightsaber into his hand ignited, and all but Tor took a quick step away from the large lizard, but Tor remained close to his scaled padawan, filled with pride at how easily Tull slipped into a protective and defensive posture.

Tor’s thoughts returned to Tull’s use of the yellow lightsaber, slaying the rancor and saving possibly all of their lives, to Khalic upon their re-entry to the temple, catching the falling starfighter with the Force, holding it mere inches from his head.

Yes, Tor thought. They will do well. They’ll carry on the Jedi when I no longer can. But we still have much further to go before then.

The creature outside was quickly dispatched and Tor knelt next to Vinn’thorla’s cell. “I’ll return once we’ve found Draco,” the caamasi said softly. “I’ll help you.” The twi’lek turned away, silent, no longer daring to feel anything but despair.

The group moved into a strange park at Rama’s request. Tor thought it strange, but followed Rama anyways, not wanting to let him out of his sight. They approached a pond in the middle of the large space and no sooner had they reached the banks, massive black tendrils burst forth from the water striking out in all directions, oozing black bodies crawling out of the water.

One of the tendrils struck Rama. He turned, his eyes glazed over but locked onto Tor. He raised his massive blaster and a hail of bolts hurled at Tor. The caamasi threw up his hands and absorbed the energy from the firestorm. As the others launched at the black creatures, Tor raised his hand. He felt sick as he reached out with the Force and pushed at Rama’s mind, sinking the massive being into unconsciousness. Why must the darkness overtake him so? Tor thought as Rama sank to the ground. I don’t want to fight him. I don’t want to fight an ally.

Tor took his lightsaber to the largest of the black creatures with the others, managing to sink them back into the pond. He could still sense them below the water, slowly reforming and Tor could think of nothing that would stop them from returning.

They carried Rama out of the room and roused him, the effects of the Force induced sleep easing off. He slowly stirred awake, his usual scowl on his face.

“Where’s my gun?”

“Don’t you think there are other things to worry about? Like what’s going on with you down here?” Tor retorted.

Rama grunted and got up making his way back to the park to find his massive weapon, inspecting it for damage while Tor eyed him closely and continued to question him, but getting nowhere.

Tor sensed an end to their time in the temple drawing near, but couldn’t help wanting more answers that he couldn’t find in the darkness.

One of the most important and most dangerous fights of my life lies ahead, Tor thought as the group walked towards a room that Draco probably waited in. He eyed Rama uneasily.

I just hope I know who it is I’ll be fighting…

View
A Tale Called Tull Part 9
Of Blades and Broken Things

The Twi’lek Jedi was broken. Tull did not need to hear her words to recognize the look he had never worn on his face, but had felt deep in his soul. Seeing this woman so soon after he had resolved to re-build himself shook the Barabel.

This could be Tull. Maybe was Tull.

The Twi’lek Jedi did not care anymore. Even the shocks of her cage did little to touch her shattered mind.

Tull can not leave her. This woman knows the knife. She knows loss. This woman is Tull. She is Wizard. She is all of us. Tull can not leave her.

“No Rama!” Wizard screamed as Red Rama slammed his axe against the woman’s cage, electrocuting her.

Tull moved like lightning. One second Red Rama was yelling about killing the woman the next he was on his back with the air out of his lungs. “This is wrong Red Rama!” Tull roared, “There is no strength in killing a broken woman! Let us free her. Heal her. Fight a whole warrior in a duel of strength. Do not weaken yourself by killing a helpless warrior.” Tull was surprised. He thought if anyone understood strength it was the towering Red Rama.

A sudden cry from the hall brought Tull’s lightsaber into his hand ignited.

Tull’s lightsword. Not Tull’s fists. Tull surprises himself.

Everyone backed away from Tull as if he had just lit a thermal. All but Wizard.

They think Tull reckless with a weapon that could kill anything that moves. They do not respect Tull.

Red Rama rose slowly with his huge blaster in hand. Red Rama and Tull spoke of helping friends, but something went unspoken by mouth, but screamed by the two beasts’ eyes. I’m not afraid of you said Red Rama’s. Bravery will not protect you said Tull’s.

Would Tull kill him? Could Tull kill him? All for a woman Tull does not know? A woman who may deserve a death at Red Rama’s hands?

Tull did not know the answer to those questions. Tull found the weight Wizard always held starting to lower on his shoulders as well.

Maybe Tull is more of a Jedi Wizard than Tull realizes.

Before Tull had to find the answer Red Rama strode from the room and incinerated the dark beast with a maelstrom from his weapon. A battle between friends would not happen yet.

Ancestors make sure it never does.


As the group headed for the park at Red Rama’s request Tull’s mind kept going back to the Twi’lek Jedi. How her padawan turned on her and she was forced to kill them. Tull just kept thinking: what if Wizard turned on Tull? Unthinkable of course, but the Twi’lek Jedi must have thought the same of her padawan once. It would be like a brother’s betrayal, it would destroy Tull. Tull was starting to see why the Twi’lek Jedi had been broken.

Then the thought came to Tull. The true terror. Wizard betraying Tull would be less likely than Tull learning to fly, but what of the opposite? Tull was true to his friend. He was learning more of the Jedi Wizards every minute he was with Wizard. Tull’s allegiances were true, but the Draco Wizard was beyond normal men. Like Wizard he had magic. No, the Force. He had the force at his command. If he could turn the Twi’lek Jedi’s padawan, could he turn Tull?

Tull will die first. He thought, and it was true.


The black monsters poured out of the underground lake and enveloped Red Rama in their darkness. For the second time in as many days Wizard subdued him with the force, and friends fought themselves.

If Tull touches them they will have Tull too.

Tull ignited his lightsaber. The yellow blade was quickly becoming a familiar friend to Tull in these dark places. Tull rushed to where Droid Bot Nemo was getting battered by the black monster. It could not have his mind, but it would swallow him whole. Tull entered the melee with blade held high and back.

This stance will allow Tull to protect the Droid Bot and it will open the beast for an attack.

Tull swung the blade in a wide arc, severing many tentacles and giving Nemo breathing room. As the beast lunged for Tull he jumped straight at it with blade raised to cleave.

“A dangerous but powerful move Tull, only used when you know an opponent is striking low. If done at the right time you will sail over the attack and likely cleave your opponent in two, but if miscalculated you will be killed,” Wizard had said.

The beast indeed went low, Tull jumped over the mass of tentacles and slashed the yellow blade in a huge downward blow. The beast split in two and deteriorated into a black puddle of darkness. The second Tull’s feet touched the ground again he spun and charged to where Kelyn Captain was battling with another monster. Tull came in with a steady but reserved set of strikes meant for defense.

Tull does not need to press his luck, Tull is no master yet.

The beast found Tull’s rhythm and lashed at his hand, tearing the lightsaber from it.

“This weapon is your life Tull,” Wizard had said.

Tull dived over one of the beast’s tentacles and was nearly pulled into the beast. He landed into a somersault and mid-roll grabbed his lightsaber. Igniting it he ended in a knelling stance with blade parallel to the ground above his head.

Always prepared for the next attack.

Seconds before the beast slammed Tull into the wall Kelyn Captain tore into it with his katana blade singing. A horrid sound of sucking and gurgling escaped the beast as it too melted into a puddle of blackness. Tull was heading for his next target before the last had died. He was focused on the big one. Wizard had already engaged it, pelting it with blade work and force attacks. As Tull came at it the monster lashed out a massive blow at Tull. Tull simply slid under the attack and came up swinging. Tull was a whirlwind of death and seconds later the great monster was dead. Tull was quickly gaining prowess at killing monsters that should not be.

Wizard stood with the smile he always wore when Tull did well. That was when the idea came into Tull’s head.

Tull knows why Wizard wanted to train Tull.

Most of the group of friends had found it odd that Wizard had just handed Tull a lightsaber with little thought, while denying the others the same honor. The Jedi had said it was because he trusted that Tull’s heart was in the right place.

That is part of it. He knows Tull will not let him down.

In truth, Tull would not let Wizard down because he was quickly becoming a true believer. Any religion has its followers who say the words and do the motions, but to stay alive a religion needs those that truly believe, those that have no doubt of the truth of that religion’s teachings. Before long Tull would be exactly that, a true believer in the teachings of the Jedi.

Wizard needs believers, but that does not earn someone a lightsword. Wizard has watched Tull in battle. Seen Tull slay men with bare hands as blasters and weapons and flame surrounded him. Wizard saw someone who knew combat.

The others had their assets: piloting, engineering, medicine, and countless other skills. Tull only had one asset, the ability to fight.

With only watching Wizard and a day’s training in techniques Tull is already fighting near Wizard’s level with a sword. How good will Tull’s swordsmanship be in a week? A month? A year? Every beast slain makes Tull that much better with the lightsword. Wizard needs a blademaster.

And the great lizard had seen it true. No one would doubt Machine Man Khalik was Wizard’s true padawan. He could feel and use the force. He was the one that men would kill just for having that connection. But he was not the only Jedi Wizard that Wizard meant to train. Wizard meant to restore the Jedi Order. Build it from the ashes. Train Jedi back to their numbers before the wars and the fall of the Republic. Wizard could not do that alone.

Wizard would one day unlock many of the force’s secrets. Gain power most men dreamed of, but he would never fight with a blade like the Jedi Blademasters who fell in the clone wars. And the Jedi needed to know the secrets of the lightsaber. Techniques mastered over centuries were in danger of being lost. Someone would have to hold on to those techniques. Make new ones. Someone would have to teach young padawans how to use a saber. Someone would have to be the first master swordsman of the New Jedi Order. It seemed Tull would be that man.

Tull wanted to train with a lightsword for Wizard. To be more like him. Tull has no magic…connection to the force. But, Tull can fight. Niman is easy to Tull. Tull is learning quick and performing techniques even Wizard will not use in combat. What happens when Tull masters Niman? Wizard knows few other styles like he knows Niman. Tull will have to re-discover these other techniques. Tull will have to make his own. Tull will become the blademaster Wizard needs so that when the Jedi Order returns they can be as wise as Wizard, and as fierce as Tull. Then no Sith will ever again threaten the Galaxy.

Wizard just kept the smile on his face. Tull wore a smile of his own.

View
We've been through a lot together

Bariss and Platt helped Serona and the others aboard the freighter.

“No matter what happens, get them out of here.” Bariss told Carson. Carson nodded and headed aboard the nearby freighter they had stolen. Bariss and Platt quickly settled into a couple of Z95 fighters. Bariss had a professional air about him as the ship roared to life. Platt, while just as confident, looked more like a 5 year old who had just been given the keys to a brand new Lamborghini. Carson’s freighter groaned to life as well. They shot out of the docking bay and quickly joined the fray outside the ship. Escaping ships and pods scrambled everywhere, trying to get away from the impending supernova. Several pirate vessels quickly locked on to them, knowing full well that attacking them would mean their deaths but eager to take down their assailants. Several of the ships were highly decorated, the hulls showing the skill of their pilots in kill tallies. Carson threaded his ship through the maelstrom, trying desperately to fend off the fighters. His ship shuddered as laser cannon fire slammed the thin armor. The shields buckled but held. Somehow, he was holding it together.

The Z-95s shot in for another strafing run and raked the ship with more lasers. The shields buckled and failed as the unrelenting pirates’ fire scarred the durasteel, leaving char marks in their wake. “Bariss, we’ve got another prime target for you over here.” Carson yelled over the comms, wondering how much more punishment the ship could take. Bariss nimbly maneuvered his fighter to assist, skillfully engaging the aces. Fenn began to calculate the hyperspace coordinates.

More lasers slammed the ship. One of the Aces exploded into a brilliant fireball.

“Get my family out of here!” Bariss growled over the comms.

The pirate flagship erupted into a massive explosion. The core exploded launching a tremendous shockwave out from its wreckage. It swallowed the nearest fighters. There was no chance to evade. No hope for survival.

Carson keyed the computer, helping Fenn plot the astrogation chart. The impending wave of fire lurched towards them with amazing speed.

Almost there.

It felt as if even the computer was straining to avoid its destruction.

Course plotted.

Carson quickly hit the button. The stars stretching out into the familiar hyperspace jump just as the fire lashed out, greedily snaking towards the engines.

Aura lay lifeless in the back of the ship. Carson wondered how much peril a life was worth. Surely there was some type of redemption for even someone as vicious as Aura Sing? Bariss’ probably thought otherwise. Then again, one man’s heroism is another man’s atrocity, he mused. He slumped back into the cockpit and closed his eyes. “So that’s what “Do No Harm” gets me.” he said with a laugh.

View
Reflections from Tor part 39

Tor pushed himself off of Tull, trying to steady his weary feet under him as he made his way to the altar ahead of him, the children still alive upon it. Kelyn walked over, scoffing at the children, clearly thinking they were too far gone to save. Tor scowled at him and got to work, using what little skill he had picked up from Carson to patch up the children.

“I don’t know why you’re bothering, Tor. Might as well let them die,” Kelyn said, looking down at the blue furred children.

“How can you say that?” Tor snapped. “After all we’ve been through. When your own kids are probably out there right now, and you want to just leave these kids to die? What if they were your own? You were going to kill them with that detonator!”

“Well I didn’t. Probably should have, but I didn’t do it so…” the scoundrel trailed off.

Confident that the children were not going to die on the spot, Tor stepped back and Tull scooped the children protectively into his arms. He felt a small twinge of light amidst the darkness as the children stirred in Tull’s arms, a feeling that was quickly swallowed by the ever-present oppression of the dark side.

Rama walked over to a curtain behind the altar and moved it aside, revealing a large mural that showed tentacled red beings tearing through Jedi, blood covering weapons and wild grins on their faces. They looked just like Rama.

“Rama…” Tor began, moving towards the large being. Rama ignored him, moving into a hidden room behind the mural. “Rama, what is this? Why are there people that look like you slaughtering Jedi? Here in a sith tomb? Why do these cultists call you a sith?!”

Rama continued to walk away, silent. Tor walked after him, hurling questions ineffectively, Kelyn doing the same. Tor could feel tendrils of the dark side burrowing their way into the group, threatening to break them all apart. Rama stood before a case containing a dark suit of armor. The sense and power of the dark side coming from it was overpowering as Rama reached to touch it, still silent to Tor and Kelyn’s repeated questions.

Tor extended his hand and Rama stopped, his feet barely touching the ground. He glared over his shoulder at Tor, his face a mask of anger. Tor felt the dark side pushing further and further into the room but no matter what he said the evil continued to advance, pushing the group ever closer towards destruction until Kelyn finally set the room ablaze, snapping the hold long enough for the group to escape through the portal.

As soon as they were back on Almass, Tor felt a wave of relief wash over him. The temple was still deep in the grip of the dark side, but it was nowhere near the intensity or ferocity of Korriban. He looked at the portal and could feel the evil from Korriban trying to force its way through. Tor gritted his teeth and reached out to the Force turning himself into a beacon of the light deep within the dark chambers of the temple. He pushed the light outward until it struck the portal and Tor pushed the light further until the portal collapsed under the sustained power of the light side.

Outside of the temple Tor finally had a moment to breath and rest, recovering his strength after so much sustained contact with the dark side, the rest of the group also settling in to recover.

After a few hours Tor roused Tull and took him to an open area near the temple. “You were very good with that lightsaber, Tull,” the caamasi said.

“Tull tried to copy the way Wizard uses a lightsword,” the barabel replied.

“Well it was quite impressive for someone just copying. Let me show you some of the proper stances.”

Tor spent the next several hours working with Tull, the large reptile quickly picking up the Niman technique and Tor marveled at his dedication and persistence with each new motion.

Rama appeared from nowhere, scowling. “I want a lightsaber,” he said in a low growl.

Tor looked over Rama’s face for a long time, thinking about the strange being’s request. He was hesitant to hand over one of the lightsabers he carried but after the confrontation on Korriban, Tor wanted to try and bridge the widening gap between them.

He handed over a plain hilt that was quickly swallowed in Rama’s large grip. “Here,” Tor said. “It’s a training saber. It won’t slice through durasteel, but it’ll still give you a decent sting or burn.” Rama grunted and walked away. Tor turned back to his work with Tull but kept an eye on Rama who ignited the saber some distance away and began to move in calculated strokes, handling the saber aggressively, but steady and practiced. Tor was surprised to see such precision and delicacy come from Rama, more used to his messy and brutal style.

Rama seemed to get fed up with the saber fairly quickly and threw the saber hard against a wall before stalking away. Tor walked over and picked it up with a frown, returning it to its place in his pack.

Deep in the Almass temple again, Tor entered a concealed room within the library. It was a room that had previously been only for Masters but now held several bodies strewn about the floor. Rama blocked the doorway, having only allowed Tor in, grunting “It’s only for Masters” as the caamasi walked past.

Tor studied the wreckage when a piece of flimsy tacked to the wall caught his eye. A message was scrawled on it in a script that Tor didn’t know, but at the bottom he could make out a few precious letters. “Darth Revan…” he said in a hushed voice. “Tull!”

The barabel pushed his way in past Rama and to Tor’s side before the dark shapes on the ground began to stir. They rose up and advanced on the group, mockeries of life. Their cruel bodies fell but not without some effort.

A passage opened in the corner of the room, dark and foreboding, descending to the level below. The group walked cautiously into it and again Tor began to feel the oppressive heaviness of the dark side. Rama began to look calm and relaxed, a smile forming on his lips, as if each step that brought darkness to the rest brought Rama peace and satisfaction. Rama began to whisper, his voice growing stronger with each word.

“Peace is a lie, there is only passion.
Through passion, I gain strength.
Through strength, I gain power.
Through power, I gain victory.
Through victory, my chains are broken.
The Force shall free me.”

Tor whirled, his eyes wide and his hand grasping his lightsaber as he ignited it and faced Rama.

“That’s the Code of the Sith!” Tor nearly shouted, memnii of lessons about the Sith Wars flooding his mind. “How do you know those words, Rama?”

Rama merely shook his head and gazed at Tor. “What words? What are you talking about?”

Tor’s hand tightened on the hilt of his lightsaber and his eyes looked wildly around the tunnel, but all he could see was darkness.

View

I'm sorry, but we no longer support this web browser. Please upgrade your browser or install Chrome or Firefox to enjoy the full functionality of this site.