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Author Topic: Schisms: The Vhal'Dan Civil War  (Read 17843 times)
TheDutchman
Knight Commander
*

Force Alignment: 792
Posts: 2986


Avatar courtesy of For Tyeth


« Reply #255 on: September 25, 2019, 03:01:57 PM »


Final Epilogue

He stared off towards the horizon, the sun setting amidst the beautiful greenery of the enormously tall dalloralla trees.  He mused and not for the first time.  Nor the second…truth be told, he’d deliberated with himself on the particular subject occupying his mind on countless occasions for literally hundreds of years.  And every single time arriving to the same conclusion.

There was nothing…nothing that he could do for his Kanp’a.  He’d gone from one end of the galaxy to the other, from the Outer Rim through Hutt Space, from the Core and even into the Unknown Regions.  He’d made dozens discoveries, seen, heard, lived a myriad of experiences through numerous events.  He’d come close to dying on more than one occasion—yea Maker how close he’d been!—but throughout it all he’d lived…only to be crushed yet again by the mounting and monumental failures of his efforts.  And throughout the centuries, he’d had one single factor sustaining him, driving him…haunting him.  His dedication to restoring his Kanp’a.

The latest failure still fresh in his mind, Kazic continued to stare into the still setting sun, the now reddish hue of the star in stark contrast with the verdant green leaves surrounding him, even this high on one of the balconies placed so as to accentuate the vista from the uppermost floor of Belkadan’s planetary Archive.  And had anyone cared to look, they would’ve seen nothing more amiss than a tall, dark haired Anzat as he continued to stare off into the horizon…but upon closer inspection, they would have seen the warring emotions as they twisted his face.

He should have been crushed, chagrined…defeated.  He should’ve been raging towards the heavens, cursing the Maker that he now questioned as to whether or not They existed.  He should’ve been sobbing on his knees, the melancholy of his hopeless situation breaking the spirit of the man who’d struggled for so long without success or hope of future realization… He should’ve been all of these things, and more.  But he was not; no, instead he felt an odd and reluctant…relief?

He started in spite of himself.  Yes…yes that was it.  He was relieved; he hadn’t admitted it to himself until just this moment, but he realized that he’d been thinking of such for some time now.  Since…

…Well, since Eriobe.  His lips spread in a slow smile, his flared nostrils inhaling at the memory of the fresh, pleasant scent that was entirely her.  Contemplatively, he stroked his black goatee, the thought of her soft green skin responding to his touch as they’d finally given in to what they’d denied themselves for the past several months, all pretenses of their “strictly platonic” relationship burnt away in their mutual desire for one another.

When first he’d arrived on Belkadan, Kazic had been following the lone lead left to him, one that required more information concerning the Rakatan Empire and their technology.  Certainly more than he knew…which was how he met Eriobe.

She was the Archive’s authority on all things Rakatan, from their physiology to the secret histories of their “Infinite Empire” to their technology.  It was from the last that Kazic learned that he’d placed Saani’s essence within a Mind Trap.  That wasn’t so surprising to him; he’d figured as much from his own research.  But the exact mechanism that would release Saani…well, that was another matter entirely.

He’d damned himself a fool from before but when Eriobe had told him the requirements necessary to release anyone so imprisoned from the Mind Trap and what it entailed… Well, he had raged then, a destructive uncharacteristic outburst that had devastated the building he’d been using as his domicile for his stay on Belkadan.  He was thankful for two things: that no one had been hurt as a result of his rage…and that Eriobe had calmed him down, speaking gently to him as she attempted to commiserate with him, her soothing words matching the tone of her voice.  Tenderly, she had nursed the numerous lacerations he’d given himself from the collapsing structure.  Stroking his back, she’d revealed to him that she was a Jedi…

…As well as being in love with him.

For the long months that they’d worked together, the two had developed a friendship, a bond that they had both felt growing deeper and deeper.  And while their feelings had developed inadvertently, they were both certain of the love that had blossomed between them.  And after Eriobe had divulged her own feelings, Kazic knew then and there that he felt likewise and had for some time.

He was in love with her as well.

At first Kazic had agonized over that fact, had vacillated from one course of action to another, telling Eriobe that he didn’t know what to do or how to proceed.  Looking deeply into his red eyes, she gave a small nod, saying that she understood…and then kissed him passionately.

At once he returned in kind, all uncertainty forgotten in the moment.  But with time to think… He’d been at odds with his feelings…with himself.  He was vehemently reminded of the time that he’d lost the daen nosi all of those years ago…specifically of the time when he realized that he had found them again.  And much the same, Kazic now realized that he’d found love again…and that he had been denying himself the truth.

Intently he stared into the setting sun as it began to plunge into the far horizon signifying the end of the day.  Yet, the promise of a new day still lingered in the sky.

A new day…a new beginning.

Yes, he knew what to do now; he had known what to do for some time.  Yet admitting it to himself had finally released him from the burden of his own guilt.  Breathing in, the fresh, earthy smell of the forest surrounding him was soon joined by another pleasant scent, one that he was now very familiar with.

“Kazic…are you alright, love?” Eriobe’s concerned voice floated from behind him, her green hands reaching around to stroke his chest.  And even though she was a tall woman, she still had to stand on her tiptoes to nuzzle the back of his neck.  Turning in her arms, he faced the Mirialan woman.

“I am now.” He softly kissed her again before a comfortable silence embraced them.  Together they watched as dusk descended around them, the tall dalloralla trees creating dark shapes in the twilight sky.  “Eriobe…” He spoke after several moments, “…I have…an errand to run.”  Reaching down, he tenderly cupped her chin.  “But when I return, I am yours.  All of me.” He emphasized.

Her piercing moss-green eyes drilled into his, her gaze raptorlike.  But when next she nodded, a small grin played upon her lips.  “I would expect nothing less, Kazic.”  For a moment her face fell, the concern evident not only in her gaze but her entire demeanor.  “Are you certain, love?  I do not want for you to think that I require—” She was suddenly cut off as Kazic fiercely kissed her.

“I am sure, Eriobe.” He held her tightly, his arms encircling her as completely as the falling darkness, both eliciting a rare comfort…for the two of them.  Without so much as a word, Eriobe nodded as she hugged Kazic tighter.

Together they watched as the stars began to shine in the night sky, their shining a promise of things to come…

…For the both of them.

               <<<<< >>>>>



“…I know that you’d offered to at the time and my response was…less than cordial…” Kazic’s voice trailed off, his brow furrowed as the last of his guilt painted his face.

“…However?” The old man’s voice was strong yet genial.  He had an open face, his beard only adding to the quality of his sincerity.

“…However, I now know that…that you were—are—right…” Kazic’s shoulders seemed to relax as if the confession had relieved him of an enormous weight.

Which it had.

The old man nodded, his smile gracious and understanding.  “It’s alright, Master Ovarug.  I understand, I do.  But as I told you before, there is nothing that you can do for retrieval.”  Out of the corner of his eye, he saw the Anzat’s face begin to fall.  “…But I believe that with the tools, knowledge, and time at my disposal, I can give Saani the…the rest that she covets.” His tone was soothing, his demeanor sympathetic.  He stopped, grabbing the Anzat’s shoulders firmly.  “Trust me my friend, I can guarantee her…and yourself…the peace that you both so desperately yearn for.”  He could see the emotions within Kazic’s eyes, the uncertainty.  But then, his face regained composure and he gave a small nod.

“I…yes, thank you.”  He sat down upon the comfortable air couch aboard the Expiator’s conference room, putting his head in hands.  “Thank you…” He repeated in a whisper.

The old man was amazed.  He’d used but an iota of Suggestion on the Anzat before Kazic had agreed.  Clearly his own desires hadn’t required as much goading as the old man had expected.  “You need not worry my friend.  You’ve been through much; I doubt that many others would have persisted for as long as you did.” His voice was tranquil, almost hypnotic.  “I shall attend Saani as one of my own, my friend.”

Standing, Kazic first stared off towards the bulkhead before turning his gaze upon the old man.  Unshed tears pooled in his eyes.  “Please tell her…tell her that…that I tried.  I tried.”  A single tear ran down his gray cheek.  “Please…”

The old man patted Kazic’s back.  “You needn’t worry my friend.  I know, I know.  And so will she.”  Again, he gave the briefest of touches with his masterful Suggestion so as to avoid any detection.  “As I told you all those years ago, I have the advantages that you do not, Kazic.”  He gently grabbed the Anzat’s arm, a kindly smile playing upon his lips.  “You have carried this weight far too long my friend…far too long.  Please—” The old man gestured dramatically, “—Allow me to serve you…and Saani.”

Kazic stood motionless for a moment, again his inner turmoil threatening to erupt forth…

…But he nodded, a gorog’s weight having finally left him and for good this time.  “I…I thank you my friend.  I…I cannot express to you my gratitude.”  He began to lead the old man towards the shielded, sequestered room, one that had remained hidden from almost every single being.  Kazic hadn’t even told Eriobe about it.  “Inside I have all of the pertinent items; I…I now give them to you…” He continued with his explaining as the old man nodded at the appropriate times.  And once inside the room, Kazic turned, gratefulness poured from the Anzat in droves.  “I…you…you don’t know how much I appreciate this.  If ever you need anything from me, please do not hesitate to ask it, Master Kadmaur.”

The old man nodded, his smile conciliatory.  “Of course my friend, of course.”  Gently prodding him, Kadmaur turned Kazic’s shoulder as if he were to follow where the Anzat lead.  “I shall do everything in my power for your Kanp’a.”

Kazic suddenly turned, a frown beginning to appear, “Master Kadmaur…I don’t reca…are you hurt?!” He cut himself short when he saw the pained look on the old man’s face.  The Anzat even opened himself to the Force, directing his meager talent of Healing into the old man.  “Is there anything that I can do?” He asked, his previous consternation forgotten.

“It…it’s nothing my friend.  Old age.  And I thank you for your efforts.” Kadmaur clasped Kazic’s outstretched arm as if in gratitude.  He hadn’t meant to slip, he was just so amazed that this had gone so…uncomplicated.  Kazic must’ve told him true about being tired of his burden.  And nor had Kadmaur lied about him being old; he had been alive for millennia.

Long enough to avoid mistakes like the one he had almost committed.  Or usually he did.

“Please, you were saying about the stasis booth?” He persisted, expertly diverting Kazic as he promised himself to continue to be more careful in the future.  Besides, self-castigation was a waste of energy.  “And, remind me, was it a…a Rakatan Mind Trap?”

As Kazic gave him the unnecessary explanations, Kadmaur reaffixed his smile upon his mouth, his plans already changing as he waited to give the Anzat the proper compassionate responses.

               <<<<< >>>>>

As one of the ship’s service droids attended to the final preparations, Kadmaur sat back on the aircouch in his comfortable recreation room.  After everything had been transferred to his ship, Kadmaur had wished the Anzat well, seeing that Kazic was already focused upon his new life, one without the centuries-old obligation that he’d saddled himself with.  

Good, Kadmaur had worried that Kazic would inquire further of his intentions.  Thankfully, he had not.

Finally safe and alone aboard his ship, Kadmaur gave himself over to his ruminations.  His Rakatan experiments could finally continue now that he had what he’d been missing for centuries.

It was incredible: those components that he’d been searching for and for such a long while had serendipitously been handed to him.  Yes, he’d had to wait but it had been only a few short years.  What were those compared to eternity?

Which reminded him of the Rakata.  “The Infinite Empire” they’d claimed.  Such hubris.  

If one desired the Infinite then they must first conquer that most persistent of enemies: Time.  And he’d done a good job of staving off Time’s despoiling depredations…but there was more—much more—that he needed to know.  Uncharacteristic anger suddenly raged through him.

He must know!  Fury seemed to consume him momentarily as he replayed his failures in his mind.  Well, not “failures” exactly but…but he was still a long way off from fully realizing his aspirations…

Expertly, he reigned his emotions in.  That was unlike him to let loose his trepidation.  Perhaps…perhaps he should have gone with his alternate plans to bring the Anzat into his plans if not exactly his confidences as his apprentice…Kazic had shown promise…

He suddenly became aware of the molten state of the room…including a spreading pool of liquid metal that had been one of the other service droids that usually attended to his needs.  Damn, he hadn’t meant to do that…

“I guess it’s been a day of emotional exhibitions…” He said aloud.  That too was unusual; Kadmaur attributed it to his time with the Anzat.  Again, he considered Kazic as a possible apprentice…

…And summarily dismissed the idea.  He was too set in his ways.  No, no Kadmaur knew that for his student, he would need someone…younger.

In a maelstrom of activity, the melted wall, floors, and ceiling began to reform, the bent panels suddenly smooth, flat, and level.  While Kadmaur was careful around others, now that he was alone he allowed the full mastery of his Force powers to refurbish what he’d demolished.  In moments most of the room looked as it did before and what auto-repair couldn’t replicate, he would just obtain upon planetfall.

Walking to the bridge he sat in the pilot’s seat and, looking out of the transparisteel canopy, he again focused upon his plans.  A sliver of him considered—even empathized for—Saani.  But only for a moment.  She would remain trapped in that device forever…

…Or, at least as long as no one else took her place in the Mind Trap.  Not that Kadmaur had any intention of releasing her and he doubted that anyone else would willingly take her place, even if they knew how to do so… Which reminded him of another lie that he’d told Kazic: that Saani could not be rejoined with her body even if the Anzat took her place.

What good would that do Kadmaur if it were Kazic stuck in the Mind Trap?  It would ruin all of the old man’s experimentation or—at the very least—delay data evaluation for another two hundred years…

And while Kadmaur had no problem waiting the two centuries, why should he when with but a single lie he obtained one of his objectives in the here-and-now?

He smiled, staring out into the stars.  Yes, he could now continue.  But only within the proper venue.  “Set course for Taris.” He commanded the navicomputer.  Even as the pseudomotion of entry, hyperspace transit, and exit all blurred into his memory, Kadmaur’s eyes refocused as he looked down at the brilliant atmosphere of the planet.  And in the first time in a long time, as his ship entered into the troposphere of Taris, he voiced his own yearning come true.

“I’m home.”

Logged

Sig courtesy of DarthScrub

Maenowan Nexu Master of the Vhal'Dan

My sabers:Zearic's Aldrnari, Archon v3 (modded w/ activation box) w/Obsidian, AS; Zearic's shoto, Apprentice v4 w/Obsidian, AS; Graflex SE w/Obsidian, GB; Archon v3 (modded w/ activation box) w/Obsidian, CG; Dark Sentinel v4 w/Obsidian, BR; Sentinel LE v4 w/Obsidian, GB; Initiate v5 w/Obsidian, AS; Sentinel LE v4 stunt, EG; Aeon LE v4 stunt, FO; Dominix v4 stunt, BR; Aeon v3 stunt, SY

Lord_S_Gray
Knight Commander
*

Force Alignment: 165
Posts: 1107



« Reply #256 on: September 25, 2019, 04:31:12 PM »

Kadmaur, Taris, Rakatan Mind Trap....hmmm...that explains a lot...but leaves a big unknown Re what happened to Saani between then and presumably 'Retrieval'. And while surrendering his burden may have offered Kazic relief it seems he has been inadvertently played by Kadmaur.   
Logged

Lord_S_Gray

Surik: "Kreia, what are you—are you a Jedi, a Sith?"
Kreia: "Does it matter? Of course it does, such titles allow you to break the galaxy into light and dark, categorize it. Perhaps I am neither, and I hold both as what they are, pieces of a whole."

TheDutchman
Knight Commander
*

Force Alignment: 792
Posts: 2986


Avatar courtesy of For Tyeth


« Reply #257 on: October 09, 2019, 08:07:09 AM »

I just wanted to once again say "Thank you" to everyone who has stuck with this story; it's the longest that I've ever written  Smiley

I have to give special thanks to LSG for allowing me to tie his mythos so closely to mine, not to mention the outstanding contributions he made to the story!

Also, stay tuned...

The Civil War may be over but hostilities have only began...

***COMING SOON***

"Familicide: The Gray Jedi War"
Logged

Sig courtesy of DarthScrub

Maenowan Nexu Master of the Vhal'Dan

My sabers:Zearic's Aldrnari, Archon v3 (modded w/ activation box) w/Obsidian, AS; Zearic's shoto, Apprentice v4 w/Obsidian, AS; Graflex SE w/Obsidian, GB; Archon v3 (modded w/ activation box) w/Obsidian, CG; Dark Sentinel v4 w/Obsidian, BR; Sentinel LE v4 w/Obsidian, GB; Initiate v5 w/Obsidian, AS; Sentinel LE v4 stunt, EG; Aeon LE v4 stunt, FO; Dominix v4 stunt, BR; Aeon v3 stunt, SY

Lord_S_Gray
Knight Commander
*

Force Alignment: 165
Posts: 1107



« Reply #258 on: October 09, 2019, 02:39:46 PM »

I just wanted to once again say "Thank you" to everyone who has stuck with this story; it's the longest that I've ever written  Smiley

I have to give special thanks to LSG for allowing me to tie his mythos so closely to mine, not to mention the outstanding contributions he made to the story!

Also, stay tuned...

The Civil War may be over but hostilities have only began...

***COMING SOON***

"Familicide: The Gray Jedi War"

Cannot wait!!! And you are very welcome, adds such depth to the Mythos of both our factions!
Logged

Lord_S_Gray

Surik: "Kreia, what are you—are you a Jedi, a Sith?"
Kreia: "Does it matter? Of course it does, such titles allow you to break the galaxy into light and dark, categorize it. Perhaps I am neither, and I hold both as what they are, pieces of a whole."

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