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Author Topic: Twisted Morality (Part III of "Only Light Can Cast Shadow" AU KOTOR FanFiction)  (Read 4471 times)
TheDutchman
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Force Alignment: 834
Posts: 3139


Avatar courtesy of For Tyeth


« Reply #30 on: April 22, 2019, 02:50:00 PM »

UPDATE: so my laptop is unusable and I can’t access my files, so update is gonna be a bit. Hoping there’s no additional damage I don’t know about. Sad
Oh wow LR, I'm sorry to hear about that  Sad  I hope that you're able to rectify what you need to without too much trouble^^

But no worries: your stories are compelling and awesome!  I feel confident in speaking for my other fellow fanfic readers but we're all hooked and will continue to look forward to your next installment  Smiley

Besides: we still have forthcoming scenes that set up your Revan within the Forumverse continuity that I'd like to take advantage of  Cheesy
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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

Lady Revan
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Force Alignment: -1033
Posts: 2316


I leave my alignment to Fate-whether Light or Dark


« Reply #31 on: April 22, 2019, 03:51:57 PM »

Oh wow LR, I'm sorry to hear about that  Sad  I hope that you're able to rectify what you need to without too much trouble^^

But no worries: your stories are compelling and awesome!  I feel confident in speaking for my other fellow fanfic readers but we're all hooked and will continue to look forward to your next installment  Smiley

Besides: we still have forthcoming scenes that set up your Revan within the Forumverse continuity that I'd like to take advantage of  Cheesy

Thanks, Dutch!  I was actually looking for something else on my google docs and found the part of already written of Chapter 3 today :O apparently I uploaded just that section at one point. It doesn’t have my notes or outline, but I might be able to write more from my phone. I apologize in advance for autocorrect sabotages if I do.
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Author of: Only Light Can Cast Shadow A pre-KotOR Fem!Revan Fic

Twisted Morality (Part III of "Only Light Can Cast Shadow")

I leave my alignment to fate--Light or Dark

Lady Revan
Knight Commander
*

Force Alignment: -1033
Posts: 2316


I leave my alignment to Fate-whether Light or Dark


« Reply #32 on: April 22, 2019, 04:18:14 PM »

I just figured out how to access my Microsoft sticky notes made on my laptop from my phone so maybe there’s hope yet....
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Author of: Only Light Can Cast Shadow A pre-KotOR Fem!Revan Fic

Twisted Morality (Part III of "Only Light Can Cast Shadow")

I leave my alignment to fate--Light or Dark

Lady Revan
Knight Commander
*

Force Alignment: -1033
Posts: 2316


I leave my alignment to Fate-whether Light or Dark


« Reply #33 on: June 01, 2019, 12:54:12 AM »

CHAPTER THREE: SEEKING SHELTER FROM THE STORM (Part 1 of ?)

 
           The escape pod went burning through the atmosphere of Taris before crashing, crashing to a grinding halt near an older apartment complex in the planet’s Upper City. Carth Onasi braced himself upon impact. It certainly wasn’t the smoothest of landings, but what could be expected from a crash landing escape pod out of a surprise space battle against the Sith fleet? All things considered, he was just happy to be alive and relatively uninjured. He couldn’t say the same about his companion though.

           “Soldier? Soldier, are you all right?”

           He gently shook the shoulder of Gwen Dakaal—the only other survivor from the Endar Spire. The two had managed to get aboard and to jettison the last escape pod before the entire ship exploded. There was no response. Carth checked her vitals. She was still alive, but she had been knocked unconscious from the crash. It seemed she had hit her head pretty hard on impact, and she was bleeding from a resulting cut near her hairline. He didn’t know yet if she had a concussion, but it was quite likely under the circumstances.

           Taris was under Sith occupation. It wasn’t safe for the two of them to remain there, in the escape pod, for very long. After all, pretty soon a team of Sith Scouts would surely come searching the area for survivors from the crash. They had to find shelter somewhere…

           Carefully, Carth took up his injured companion in his arms and opened the hatch to the escape pod. There was an apartment complex nearby, and it seemed to be their best bet for refuge for the time being. She was lighter than Carth had expected—certainly smaller than the average soldier—but the fact that she had managed to survive the attack and make it to the escape pods at all told him that there was certainly strength in her despite her petite size. If anything, it would make the situation a bit easier carrying her to safety. Carth hadn’t abandoned another soldier yet, and he certainly wasn’t about to start now…

           He made his way cautiously toward the apartments, being careful to avoid the eyes of any Sith patrols. It was late, and so the cover of night served to aid in their escape. They needed to find Bastila if there was going to be any hope for The Republic, but Carth knew he couldn’t do so alone. Taris was an immense city-planet built layer upon layer and he lacked the skills on his own that might be required to locate her. What he’d been able to read of his companion’s service records while he had been waiting for her to make her way to the escape pods had convinced him of two things: that he would need her help if he was going to locate Bastila, and that there were some things he needed clarification of as to why she had been selected for their mission aboard the Endar Spire.

           This particular apartment complex seemed old, but well enough kept. It was clearly habited, which could have been a good thing or bad thing. Either it could help them to blend in with the locals, or some local could report them for trespassing and they would be done for. Under the circumstances, Carth just had to hope for the best. There wasn’t anywhere else he could get to without being spotted, particularly while carrying another body.

           The halls were fairly empty other than a few utility droids. Carth observed the door of each apartment unit as they passed. He was looking for anything that might indicate a vacant space. While he didn’t like the idea of remaining as squatters, they needed shelter fast.

Finally, he stopped. One of the doors seemed a bit different than the others. It was subtle, but there was a light coating of dust on the keypad that opened it. Whoever was responsible for cleaning had neglected this area, probably knowing that the unit had been vacant for some time. Carth bit his lip. He hoped that he was right. If he ended up breaking into some local’s apartment, there would certainly be even more trouble for them than they were in now…

Carth set his companion down and pulled a security tunneler from his supplies, quickly going to work until he heard a soft unlatching sound and pressed the trigger for the door. It slid open to reveal a dark and simply furnished apartment. It looked as though the place hadn’t been lived in for several months, which made it perfect to set up base until they could get off of this planet with Bastila.

He took his companion over to a bunk and set her down. “Must’ve hit her head pretty hard in the crash,” he muttered to himself. He gently lifted her head enough to slide a pillow underneath and the walked over to a chair to sit and pulled out his pack to see what little supplies they had—a few credits, some medpacks, a couple days’ worth of rations… They each had their blasters still on them. Luckily those hadn’t been destroyed in the crash. After all, they might end up needing them if any Sith happened to recognize that they were survivors of the space battle which had taken place overhead.

He pulled out one of the Medpacs and went back to his companion to begin tending to her injuries with a kolto patch. They didn’t seem too serious now that he could look them over more closely. He could only hope that she would heal quickly so they could begin searching for the Jedi Bastila. There was a sleep anesthetic in the pack also, which he chose to administer, thinking that the rest would help her body recover.

He brushed a stray lock of blood-dampened raven hair out of her face to put a cold compress to her forehead. Carth couldn’t help but to wonder what her assignment on the Endar Spire had been. After all, she didn’t strike him as the soldier type and her records were… odd at best. She had used some degree of stealth during the time that he had observed her making her way to the escape pods, so perhaps she was a scout of some sort…

He couldn’t say that he knew her very well. After all, she had only been recently assigned to the Republic crew that had been aboard. In fact, it was a last-minute assignment, which made him wonder even more. Bastila Shan, the Jedi in charge of the mission, had specifically requested that this woman be transferred into the crew. It seemed more than just a bit strange to him that somebody who was a last-minute transfer requested by the Jedi was the only surviving crew member other than him. In his time dealing with the Jedi, Carth had come to figure out that things like this were seldom just a coincidence…

No sooner had he placed the cold compress to her head than the woman began to stir. She seemed to be trying to get up. Almost as if she were waking from a bad dream. While it was encouraging to see her attempting to move, it probably wasn’t the best idea given her current state.

“Woah, hold on,” he said, gently pushing her back down as she attempted to sit up. “I admire your spirit, but don’t try to get up just yet. You were smashed up pretty badly when we crash landed here on Taris. Don’t worry, we should be safe here in this apartment. I gave you something to help you sleep. Just get some rest and let the kolto packs to their job.”

He wasn’t sure if she had heard him at all and was actually taking his advice, or if the sleep aid had simply finished kicking in, but she relaxed back into the bunk and dozed off. Carth gave a sigh of relief. He needed rest himself after all that had transpired. The soldier kicked off his boots, hung his flight jacket over the back of the old couch and laid down, closing his eyes. In the morning, he would need to scout the area some to see what he could learn of their situation. With any luck, the other survivor would be awake by then… Dakaal if he recalled correctly from her records.

He stretched as much as he could within the couch’s space and began to doze off. There was a lot of work to be done still. After all, the Republic was counting on them to find Bastila Shan and return her to the Jedi Order.

 
><><><><><


 
 Carth stretched, nearly falling from the couch he had been sleeping on through the night. It was daylight now, he suspected, though the apartment did not have any windows, so it was difficult to know for certain. He sat up and gave a yawn before glancing over toward his companion. She’d moved quite a bit since he’d fallen asleep, and seemed to be muttering something he couldn’t make out. ‘Is she awake?’ he wondered to himself.

He got up and approached where she was sleeping. He would probably need to change out the kolto patches on her head injury. He had a few more medpacks left in their supplies. He only hoped they wouldn’t find themselves in another situation where they would need them any time soon. He reached to take the old kolto patch, what had fallen off and was laying next to her, and tried to observe her face. Her eyes were still closed. Up close though, he was able to make out some of what she was saying.

No… No, stop… You… don’t under...stand… I have to… No…..

He frowned, watching her shift uneasily as she slept. She seemed to be having a nightmare of sorts, though he couldn’t begin to guess what about given the little snippets of her speech. He tossed the used patch and opened a new one, but as he was kneeling down and bent over her to apply the new patch, she rolled over suddenly, her hand coming round and smacking him square in the nose in the process.

“Ow!” he cried out, bringing his free hand to his nose to check for blood. The sound must have disturbed his sleeping companion though, because her eyes fluttered open for a moment before the heaviness of her eyelids pulled them back to shut again and she drifted back into sleep. Carth checked his hand. When he found that his nose wasn’t bleeding, he sighed and shook his head before continuing his application of the new kolto pack.

He stood as he finished and then went back into their supplies and took out a ration bar, which he unwrapped and began to eat. He wanted to do a bit of scouting to assess their surroundings. He’d had to move so quickly after their crash landing that he’d not had a chance to get a feel for the area yet. Once he’d finished the ration share, he found the fresher and cleaned himself up a bit before putting on his flight coat and heading out to observe the apartment complex.

Upon his early observations (now that they weren’t simply running for cover as fast as they could), he found the complex to be rather odd for being Tarisian. The only human that he observed in his exploration was a janitor, mopping the hallways apart from a couple of cleaning droids. Even so, the place was still in relatively poor condition, and it was quite obvious that the sentients who lived here were lower class. From what he knew of Taris, Tarisians didn’t generally take kindly to non-humans, and so he had to assume that this was some sort of an upper-city alien slum of sorts. He noticed more than a few eyes staring at him as he walked the halls. It was quite obvious that he didn’t fit in there. This being said, perhaps it was a poor option for a place to blend in, but they didn’t really have much choice as to otherwise. After all, they were fugitives on a Sith-controlled planet. They had to take whatever they could get.

Pardon me,” came a hiss of a voice speaking Twilekese. Carth turned to see a Twi’lek male addressing him. “I have not seen you around these parts before… Are you here because of the quarantine?

Carth faltered. So the Sith had quarantined the planet, probably looking for Bastila. He should have suspected as much, but that would make their situation even more difficult. After all, once they found Bastila, it wouldn’t just mean finding a way off the planet, but finding a way off the planet despite the quarantine. He had to think of a story to tell the Twi’lek fast, lest he should arouse suspicions from the locals. After all, there was probably a handsome reward being offered for Republic fugitives from the Endar Spire, particularly if they believed they could lead them to the Jedi Bastila Shan.

“Yeah, my crewmate and I, we uh… we got stuck here because of the quarantine after making a supplies stop on the planet. Didn’t feel like staying on the ship the whole time so we wanted to find a cheap place to rent out while we were stuck here.” He did his best to keep as straight a face as he told his lie. It was the best he could come up with on the fly.

Ah, your crewmate?

“Yeah, uh…. She’s still asleep. I think she had a little too much Tarisian ale last night at the cantina,” he said, laughing in an attempt to cover his nervousness. “I uh…. I’ll be going now. Just wanted to stretch my legs a little. It was nice meeting you, neighbor!” And he quickly walked away, back to the apartment.

He was just outside the door when he heard the clank of armored footsteps in the distance and a partially synthesized voice, as if through a helmet’s sound filter. “Freeze, alien scum! This is a raid. Anyone who resists will be taken into custody. We’re looking for suspicious activity in the area after the crash last night.”

Carth quickened his pace and returned inside the apartment, locking the door behind him to avoid being spotted by what sounded like a squad of Sith Troopers checking the complex. He sighed in relief. He was almost certain they had not seen him, but didn’t think it would be safe to go out scouting again for a while. He supposed the best bet would be to wait it out until he and his companion could move together as a small unit. They would have a far better chance of finding Bastila and getting off the planet if they worked together than if they were alone.

 
><><><><><

 
           Gwen’s vision was hazy. It took some time before her eyes could make any sense of what her ears could already hear. There were sounds of whirring and crashing, like something smashing up against an energy force field at a relatively high speed. Except this sound happened over and over again.

           Finally, Gwen could make out two forms slowly taking shape in the light. There were two humans there, each carrying an elegant melee weapon with brilliant blades of colored light—lightsabers. It was two Jedi in a dual for life and death.

           One form was clearly a woman. She had short chestnut hair pulled into low pigtails on either side of her head, and wore a bronze colored body suit robe. The golden yellow color of the double blades on her saber illuminated the area with a sort of golden aura.

           The one she was fighting was dressed in hooded robes and wore a full face mask. Gwen could not tell if the person were a man or a woman. The movements were so quick and the robes were so ambiguous that Gwen couldn’t help but to think that the choice must have been on purpose, with the specific intent to cause confusion to the onlooker. The blade of the other was a deep crimson and its light reflected off of the red color of the Mandalorian mask.

           There was a strange sense of familiarity and of terror as Gwen watched the scene unfold. She felt as though she could sense every impact from their blades against one another. The ground began to shake and the surroundings rattle. They must have been in some sort of a space battle. Gwen could feel the sweat pouring from her brow. She was breathing hard. She didn’t know what was going on, but she felt as though she needed to escape—and fast!

 
><><><><><

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Author of: Only Light Can Cast Shadow A pre-KotOR Fem!Revan Fic

Twisted Morality (Part III of "Only Light Can Cast Shadow")

I leave my alignment to fate--Light or Dark

Lord_S_Gray
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Force Alignment: 171
Posts: 1163



« Reply #34 on: June 02, 2019, 03:57:09 PM »

I like  it, filling in the gaps of Carths events while Gwen was under!
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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."

Lady Revan
Knight Commander
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Force Alignment: -1033
Posts: 2316


I leave my alignment to Fate-whether Light or Dark


« Reply #35 on: June 02, 2019, 11:46:07 PM »

I like  it, filling in the gaps of Carths events while Gwen was under!

It's not a lot (I'm still getting used to writing Carth). Considering that quite a bit is going to likely end up from his perspective, I'm trying to ease my way in
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Author of: Only Light Can Cast Shadow A pre-KotOR Fem!Revan Fic

Twisted Morality (Part III of "Only Light Can Cast Shadow")

I leave my alignment to fate--Light or Dark

Lady Revan
Knight Commander
*

Force Alignment: -1033
Posts: 2316


I leave my alignment to Fate-whether Light or Dark


« Reply #36 on: September 29, 2019, 10:57:38 PM »

So I was planning on waiting to post this section with a couple more sections, but it turned out longer than I had anticipated, and so I'm just below the character limit for a post XDDDD More soon to come. I have an outline for a few chapters again



CHAPTER THREE: SEEKING SHELTER FROM THE STORM (Part 2 of ?) [probably of 7]

><><><><><

           Three days had passed since the destruction of the Endar Spire. Carth Onasi sat polishing his blaster in that little run-down apartment on Taris. He was beginning to grow impatient with the situation. The Sith forces would surely be searching for Bastila Shan, and he needed to make sure that the Republic got to her first. After the space battle, the Sith blockade had ordered a planetary quarantine that prevented any ships from entering or leaving the planet without special access codes. The situation just seemed to be getting worse and worse. Without Bastila’s battle meditation, there was little help left for the Republic, and without his crewmate regaining consciousness, he had no one to help him look for the Jedi.

   That day, however, would prove different than the previous three had. He caught movement out of the corner of his eye and holstered his blaster pistol before moving over to check on her. She was panting, and thrashing about again. He’d learned by now from the previous experiences of being whacked in the face not to get too close when she was in this state. He only hoped though that this time, she would finally be waking up for good.

   His hopes were fulfilled when this time he saw her sit fully up in the bunk. She continued her panting a few moments longer as she braced herself back against the mattress with her hands before her breathing finally slowed to a normal pace and she looked slowly about the room. The woman’s eyes stopped and gew wide when they landed on him, and she frantically seemed to start feeling about for something. When she was seemingly unable to find whatever it was she was looking for, she stood, facing him.

   Carth managed a rather sheepish smile in return to her rather startled gaze. “Good to see you up instead of thrashing about in your sleep,” he said, placing his hands where they were clearly visible in front of him so she understood he meant no harm. He had seen her react in fear onboard the Endar Spire, and thought it best to make it very clear he posed no threat to her. He could only imagine how startled she must have felt waking up in a completely strange place like this after having been in the state she was for several days. “You must have been having one hell of a nightmare. I was beginning to wonder if you were ever going to wake up…”


   He watched her, waiting for some sort of a response, but the woman seemed to be at least partly in shock still. He sighed and ventured stepping toward her. The woman flinched at first, but looked to Carth’s hand as he held it out to her. “I’m Carth,” he said, introducing himself, “one of the Republic soldiers from the Endar Spire. I was with you in the escape pod… Do you remember?”

   He watched her, still holding his hand out to her and hoping she would accept his gesture. There were no signs that he had seen so far of any other survivors from the attack, and he needed her help and cooperation if they were ever going to find a way to get off of this planet and back to the Republic.

   “I had a… strange dream,” she murmured, her blue eyes growing more distant now. “Like a… a vision, or something…”

   She didn’t seem to be looking at him any more. Carth cleared his throat a little in an attempt to recapture her attention. It seemed successful because her eyes shot upward and alert to meet his own. “I'm not surprised. You took a serious blow to the head. You're probably having all kinds of strange dreams. I wouldn't worry too much about it,” he assured her.

   Carth felt himself take a breath in relief when she finally took his hand and shook it. “Carth… the one on the communicator. I remember…. I’m Gwen, by the way. Gwen Dakaal….” she looked around, letting his hand go. “How did we get here?”

   Carth’s smile softened. He was glad to know it seemed as though Gwen was going to be okay after all…. “Well, you've been slipping in and out of consciousness for a couple of days now, so I imagine you're pretty confused about things,” he said. “Try not to worry. We're safe… at least for the moment. We're in an abandoned apartment on the planet of Taris. We were overhead when the Sith fleet attacked the Endar Spire. You were banged up pretty badly when our escape pod crashed, but luckily I wasn't seriously hurt. I was able to drag you away from our crash site in all the confusion, and I stumbled onto this abandoned apartment. By the time the Sith arrived on the scene we were long gone.”

   “I guess I owe you my life then,” Gwen said. “Thanks…”

   Carth shook his head a little. “You don’t need to thank me. I’ve never abandoned anyone on a mission yet and I’m certainly not about to start now… Besides, I’m gonna need your help.”

   Gwen raised an eyebrow and folded her arms as she sat back down on the bunk, crossing her legs. “What sort of help?”

   “Well,” Carth said, scratching his head, “Taris is under Sith control. Their fleet is orbiting the planet, they've declared martial law and they've imposed a planet-wide quarantine. But I've been in worse spots. I saw on your service records that you understand a remarkable number of alien languages. That's pretty rare in a raw recruit, but it should come in handy while we're stranded on a foreign world.”

   “Yeah, well I work in cipher,” said the woman. “Being familiar with a variety of languages is kind of a requirement. Truth be told, once you know a few of them, you start to notice that everything’s related one way or another… Well, almost everything…. Anyway, is it just a translator you need until a rescue party comes?”

   Carth shook his head. “There's no way the Republic will be able to get anyone through the Sith blockade to help us. If we're going to find Bastila and get off this planet, we can't rely on anybody but ourselves.”

   “Wait! Wait… Backup a moment? Bastila? You mean that Jedi from the Endar Spire?” Gwen had unfolded her arms, making frantic motions with her hands in emphasis of her words. “Why is it so important to find Bastila?”

   Carth looked at her rather confused. “That smack to your head did more damage than I thought,” he remarked, quickly regretting his words when he saw Gwen’s eyes narrow into a leer. He chuckled nervously, hoping to ease the situation. She was rather… odd. Carth couldn’t help but to recount the moment on the Endar Spire when she’d pointed her blaster at him upon reaching the escape pods. “Bastila was with the strike team that killed Darth Revan, Malak's Sith master,” he said in an attempt to defend his comments about wanting to find the Jedi. “Bastila is the key to the whole Republic war effort. The Sith must have found out she was on the Endar Spire and set an ambush for us in this system. I believe Bastila was on one of the escape pods that crashed down here on Taris. For the sake of the Republic war effort, we have to try and find her.”

   “Forget it!” the woman said, standing firmly and folding her arms. “I’m not risking my life to try to save her.” With this, she made a move as if to walk away. Where to, Carth was unsure. Afterall, she’d not seen any of the surrounding area and there could very well be Sith patrols around, like earlier. Not to mention the fact that she’d been unconscious for days and had just gotten up. She was likely to end up fainting from fatigue before she got very far.

   He reached out, catching her by the arm. “I don't think you understand the situation,” he said. “We can't hide on this planet forever. Eventually, the Sith will find us… and you don't want that, believe me! Getting off this world isn't going to be easy… we'll probably need Bastila's help. Not to mention that without her, the whole Republic war effort is doomed.” He added the last part on for good measure, hoping to appeal to some sort of patriotism. After all, Gwen must have joined the republic military for a reason. If he could manage to touch on that, then perhaps he could convince her of his side of things. It was, after all, in both of their best interests.

   Gwen sighed, causing Carth to relax his grip on her arm. It seemed, at least, like she wasn’t going to straight up walk out on him. “Look,” she said, “how do you even know that this ‘Bastila’ is still alive?”

   “I don’t,” Carth admitted. “But Bastila has a strong command of the Force. If we survived the crash, it doesn’t seem too farfetched to  think that maybe she did too. Besides, what’s the alternative? If she’s dead, then there’s no one who can stop Malak and the Sith from wiping out the Republic. All things considered, I’d rather operate on the assumption that she survived.”

   Carth watched Gwen’s face. She seemed to be giving thought to his words. Maybe…. Maybe she changed her mind? “You make a fair point,” she said, her eyes lifting to meet his. “What do you suggest we do next then?”

   Her answer gave Carth some degree of relief. It seemed as though Gwen Dakaal was willing to cooperate with his plans to find Bastila and get off Taris and back to the Republic. “Well, I doubt any of the Sith are looking for us specifically. We’re not that important, at least not in comparison to Bastila. That being said, if we’re careful, we should be able to move around the planet without attracting any unwanted notice--a luxury that Bastila isn’t likely to have.”

   Gwen shook her head a little. “You know, if Bastila is as great as they say she is with her Battle Meditation, then how come the Sith managed to completely obliterate the Endar Spire?”

   “Well,” Carth shrugged, “the attack on the Endar Spire happened so fast she probably never even had a chance to use her power. I'm guessing she barely got out alive, and now she's trapped here just as we are. The whole planet is under quarantine. No ships can land or take-off. So if Bastila's going to escape Taris, she's going to need our help. And we'll probably need hers.”

   “I guess you have a point... Any idea where we should start looking for Bastila?”

   “While you were out I did some scouting around,” Carth said. Since his first little expedition out, he’d managed to gather slightly more information. It still wasn’t a lot to go by, but it was all they had, really. “There are reports of a couple escape pods crashing down into the Undercity. That's probably a good place to start, but the Undercity is a dangerous place. We don't want to go in there unprepared. It won't do us or Bastila any good if we go and get ourselves killed.” 

   Carth winced internally at his choice of words in the last part. He’d meant it to come out as a joke, but it hadn’t quite played the way he intended… Dammit… The sound of Gwen’s voice, however, interrupted his internal berating or himself.

   “I’d like to ask you some questions, if you don’t mind,” she said.

   “I'll tell you whatever I can,” Carth said, “though I don't know how much help it'll be.” It was natural for her to have questions about the whole situation, given how long she had been out for. As the senior officer in this situation, it was his duty to answer any questions regarding their new mission. Even so, he was still very much playing the situation by ear himself.

   “I’d like to know some more about you, Carth, seeing as you’ve read my service records.” Her question caught him off guard for a moment. He chuckled, wondering for a moment if he could avoid the question. After all, they had a lot to do if they were going to find Bastila and get through the quarantine. Beyond that, Carth didn’t really enjoy much talking about himself, and now really didn’t seem like the time for long, drawn-out introductions. Her expression, however, made him realize that he wasn’t about to get out of the situation so easily. He’d not seen a look like that from someone since…

   Carth swallowed, pushing the thought aside. Now wasn’t the time. Instead, he forced a smile at Gwen before he risked a reply. “I understand why you want to know more about me. I, uh…I kinda get the feeling we'll be spending a lot of time together over the next while. But this isn't really the best time for long introductions; we should stay focused on the task at hand. There'll be time for that later, promise.” He knew it wouldn’t allow him to avoid her questions forever, but he hoped it would at least buy him time.

   His companion let out a slightly frustrated sigh and placed her hands on her hips. “Fine,” she said. “Later then. Let’s get a move on. After all, the sooner we find Bastila, the sooner we can get off of this planet. Maybe while we scout things out a bit, we can find something to eat. I’m starving…”

   Carth couldn’t quite tell if she was joking or if she was being serious. Gwen was an odd creature, that much was certain. “Right. Uh… We can use this abandoned apartment as a base, and we can probably get some equipment and supplies here in the Upper City. Just... remember to keep a low profile. I've heard some grim stories about the Dark Jedi interrogation techniques,” They’d warned him especially when he’d been assigned to act as a guide for Bastila’s special mission, but even before then, he’d heard rumors. “They say the Force can do terrible things to a mind. It can wipe away your memories and destroy your very identity! But I figure if we don't do anything stupid we should be okay. I mean, after all, they're looking for Bastila, not a couple of grunts like us,” he grinned a little to show he was trying to stay positive.

Gwen’s face showed that she didn’t seem convinced. And maybe she was right. The Sith would be looking for any survivors at all, and the ship that had attacked the Endar Spire…. It had been the Leviathan. And if her crew were the same, they might very well start searching for him too if they knew he had been aboard...

The woman shook her head and walked passed him to the little table where he’d set their supplies, taking her pistol and holstering it and the couple of grenades she’d had on her previously and clipping them to her belt elsewhere.
“Ready when you are,” she said, turning back to him over her shoulder.

Carth cleared his throat. “Alright, soldier, let's move out!” he said, trying to sound authoritative as possible. Lieutenant or not, barking orders like that in this situation felt odd, especially since he was pretty sure it wasn’t a ground soldier he was with…

Once he’d gathered his own weapons and supplies, the two ventured forth from the apartment. He had hoped that it would be a relatively quiet. After all, with the Sith Patrols out and searching the Uppercity for survivors, they had to be extra-cautious. However, today was not so very quiet as the pilot had hoped for.

“Okay you alien scum, everybody get up against the wall! This is a raid!”

Carth instinctively put an arm out, stopping Gwen when he heard the voice from a bit further down the hall.

There was a patrol here just yesterday, and they found nothing!” came a Duros voice. “Why do you Sith keep bothering us?

“Let’s head back and wait for them to pass,” the pilot whispered to his companion.

No sooner had he spoken to her than blaster fire sounded, echoing through the corridor.

That's how we Sith deal with smart-mouth aliens! Now the rest of you get up against the wall before I lose my temper again!” The voice belonged to a Sith Soldier who was accompanied by two battle droids. One of the droids seemed to have picked up the two humans on its sensors, because it made a sound, causing the soldier to shift his attention toward them.

“What's this?” the Sith Soldier said. “Humans hiding out with aliens… on Taris? Republic fugitives, perhaps?”

Dammit,’ Carth thought. There was certainly no chance now of them slipping away from the situation without a confrontation. Things were likely to get messy….

Before Carth knew what was happening, a blaster fired from beside him. Gwen had drawn her weapon and opened fire on the Sith soldier and droids. “Dammit!” he exclaimed, aloud this time. He made a mental note to berate her choice of acting without waiting for word from her senior officer when they ever got out of this. In the meantime, he drew his own blaster pistol and also opened fire.

The whirr and flurry of fire from both ends was relatively short. Luckily for them, the Sith soldier had been alone other than his droids, and it seemed that the alien locals weren’t particularly fond of him. Carth could have sworn there had been some extra shots fired at their common enemy from a few of the perhaps bolder among the alien refugees there. He sighed and holstered his pistol before turning to Gwen.

“Next time,” he said, “you should wait for my order before firing.”

Gwen’s brow raised and her eyes widened and she let out a single laugh. “Excuse me?! He would have shot us dead if he had the chance to fire first. Doesn’t take a genius to figure that much out.”

Carth raised a finger, opening his mouth as if he wanted to say something in protest, but was unable to find the words initially to do so. She did make a fair point. It wasn’t so much that he disagreed with her assessment of the situation so much as it was his duty to try to make such assessments. He gave another sigh, more frustrated this time and then shook his head a little as he brought his finger down. “Look, I know you mean well, but just… try not to act too much on your own. We’re a team here. Neither one of us can get out of this situation alone…”

   “Poor Ixgil,” came the voice of a Duros. Carth and Gwen both turned to look to find a Duros male approaching them. “He should never have talked back to that Sith. Thankfully you were here to step in and help us humans. This isn't the first time the Sith have come in here to cause trouble for us, but hopefully it will be the last.

“Just happy we could help,” Carth said to the alien creature.

“Won't someone come searching for this patrol?” Gwen interrupted.

“Don't worry about the bodies,” the Duros said. “I will move them so it looks like they were killed elsewhere. That should throw the Sith off the track. With any luck, they won't be bothering us again for a while.”

“Thanks,” Carth told him before turning to Gwen. “We should head out before any more Sith see us. Humans hanging around aliens is a strange sight on Taris. We’ll be safer to avoid sticking around here unless we’re back inside the apartment.”

“Right,” Gwen agreed with a nod. “Besides, we won’t find what we’re looking for here.”

The two were in agreement, and with their goal in mind, left the apartment complex to begin their search for the lost Jedi.


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Author of: Only Light Can Cast Shadow A pre-KotOR Fem!Revan Fic

Twisted Morality (Part III of "Only Light Can Cast Shadow")

I leave my alignment to fate--Light or Dark

Lady Revan
Knight Commander
*

Force Alignment: -1033
Posts: 2316


I leave my alignment to Fate-whether Light or Dark


« Reply #37 on: November 12, 2019, 02:54:36 AM »

So, some sections ended up longer than I anticipated, and now I have to divide them further in posts because of character limit :/ These two were supposed to be one with one additional part also, but... too long -_-



CHAPTER THREE: SEEKING SHELTER FROM THE STORM (Part 3 of ?) [probably of 10]

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The impact from the escape pod crash landing on Taris’ surface had been quite rough. Perhaps if it weren’t for her Jedi training, she would never have survived it at all. The pod itself was smashed up rather badly. Parts of it were still singed and smoking from the travel through the planet’s atmosphere. Bastila Shan tried to breathe deeply, remaining mindful of herself and her vitals. She had survived the crash, but this was only the beginning. Now, she was stranded on an enemy occupied world with no way off and an entire army likely searching for her specifically.

She had to remain alert. The fate of the Republic was hanging by a thread. The Sith must have discovered that she was aboard the Endar Spire and set a trap for it along the hyperspace route as it traveled into the Outer Rim. All was not lost though. She could sense that much. While there were many losses as a result of the battle, she could sense that there were survivors… soldiers of the Republic, yes, but more importantly the one she was connected to. While faint, she could feel that connection in the Force was still present…

That much, at least, was a relief. If they had both survived this crash, then there was still hope, however slim it might be. She had to find ‘Gwenevere Dakaal’ and return to the Republic. She could not afford to fail this mission…
Bastila’s thoughts were cut short, however. She sensed presences coming--about a dozen of them! She fumbled with the safety belt from the escape pod so that she could get out of her seat. The blasted thing was stuck, and they were closing in quickly… She couldn’t tell yet whether they were Sith soldiers or natives, but either way, it was dangerous to let them find her so soon after the battle.

Finally, there was a click as the latch came undone. It was not, however, soon enough…

“Freeze!” She heard from the other side of the escape pod door. “Don’t move. This is Black Vulcar territory and we’re claiming the salvage from this wreck—you included!”

Bastila considered how to proceed. She did not have time to waste on dealing with local gangs. She would need to make this quick before things got out of hand. “I would advise against such a course of action,” the Jedi stated. With this, she leapt from her seat, reaching for her lightsaber to ignite it. There was only one problem. Her lightsaber was missing!

A stun shot came from behind, causing her to fall limp to the ground. She could still faintly hear them as she struggled to hold onto consciousness.

“She doesn’t look like a soldier,” one of them said. “She’s not wearing the standard Republic uniform. Must be some sort of an officer. I reckon a pretty young thing like her will fetch a hefty price on the slave market. We should sell her to the Crucible…”

“With the quarantine, we can’t sell her anywhere,” said another. “Bring her to Brejik. He’ll decide what to do with her. The rest of you, salvage what you can from the crash site—anything that seems like it could have value….”

She heard their voices grow fainter and fainter as she felt herself slowly lose consciousness and succumb fully to the stun.

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Author of: Only Light Can Cast Shadow A pre-KotOR Fem!Revan Fic

Twisted Morality (Part III of "Only Light Can Cast Shadow")

I leave my alignment to fate--Light or Dark

Lady Revan
Knight Commander
*

Force Alignment: -1033
Posts: 2316


I leave my alignment to Fate-whether Light or Dark


« Reply #38 on: November 12, 2019, 03:04:56 AM »

CHAPTER THREE: SEEKING SHELTER FROM THE STORM (Part 4 of ?) [probably of 10]

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As hungry as Gwen was, Carth had insisted they seek medical care prior to seeking food. With how long she had been unconscious combined with what little medical supplies they had, he wanted to be certain there weren’t further undetected injuries in addition to the head injury that he’d been treating since the crash. Gwen had taken part of a ration bar in the meantime to hold her over. She had a lingering headache that she could not tell if it was from her injury or the fact that she had not eaten in the three days she had been unconscious. Either way, it hadn’t put her in the most pleasant of moods.

“Look, I’m fine,” she insisted as they walked. “While I appreciate your concern, I don’t need you mothering me.”

“Don’t you think we’re better off at least checking?” He said.

“I think I’d feel a lot better if I had something other than ration bars,” she snapped. “I couldn’t eat a single thing on that damned ship it seemed without getting sick afterward!”

“Well sorry fleet cafeteria isn’t good enough for you,” Carth said sarcastically, rolling his eyes in the process.

“Don’t you roll your eyes at me!”

“Calm down, geesh! It was only a joke. There’s a cantina close to the apartments, we’ll head back that way as soon as we finish here.” Carth added the last part as they stepped inside of  a Tarisian Clinic. It was very plain, steryl… as a clinic ought to be. There were two men there who seemed to run the place: a younger one who was polishing a medical droid, and an older one who seemed to be working with chemicals at a lab station of sorts.

Carth approached the one working on the droid. “Excuse me,” the pilot said, “but can you help us--”

“Can't you see I'm busy with my duties?” the younger man snapped as he turned around sharply to face them. “Go talk to Zelka if you need something.”

“Well, nothing quite beats good old Tarisian hospitality,” Gwen muttered sarcastically. It was no sooner that she had than she felt Carth’s elbow nudge her ribs as he gave her a sideways glance. The woman groaned, rolling her eyes at her male companion’s disapproval.

“Sorry for disturbing you,” Carth said, frantically trying to cover up Gwen’s commentary. “We’ll uh… we’ll go talk to him now.”

She felt his hand on her back a moment, presumably to encourage her to walk away, and tensed. She quickly shrugged him away in an attempt to quickly end her discomfort. The physical contact felt strange. It had ever since… Well, there was no sense in thinking about that at the moment. Her head hurt enough as it was without additionally lingering on bad memories.

Carth must have understood her discomfort because he retracted his hand just as quickly as she had begun to shrug him away, and Gwen let out a silent sigh in relief. He left her and approached the older man at the other end of the clinic.

Gwen folded her arms and meandered throughout the little steryl space. There wasn’t much to look at, but it gave her something to do while she waited to head to the cantina. She could hear Carth talking in the background to whom she could only assume was the ‘Zelka’ the first man had referred to. Her eyes skimmed over the walls and shelves… until they fell upon something that caused her to pause.

There was a large locked door on the West wall that read ‘Lab Personnel Only.’ While it was normal for such establishments to have areas off-limits to all but employees, something felt… different. She didn’t know quite how to best describe it. She felt… familiarity? Was that it? Whatever it was, it compelled curiosity from her. Gwen’s haze drifted from the Aurebesh lettering of the door sign to a simple electronic lock pad on the wall next to the door. It was such an easy lock….

“Gwen? Could you come here?”

She spun around at the sound of Carth’s voice to look at him and Zelka “Yeah?” she said. Her hand had quickly drawn away from the lock, she hoped faster than anyone else there could have seen. ‘Dammit, Gwen, you’re supposed to be respectable now!’ she thought to herself. ‘Just let it go….’

“I'll not have it said that Zelka Forn refused to help somebody just because they weren't a citizen of Taris,” the clinician said to Carth, seemingly in response to a part of their previous conversation. He continued, this time addressing her directly and introducing himself. “Miss Dakaal, isn’t it? I’m Zelka Forn. Your friend here tells me you’re in need of healing? I can treat almost any injury or ailment right here at the medical facility, except the rakghoul disease, of course.”

“I’m sorry… rakghoul disease?” Gwen asked, raising an eyebrow. She folded her arms as she approached them, choosing to remove herself from the bizarre urge to pick open the lab personnel door. “What’s that?”

 “A terrible affliction that has plagued Taris for many generations,” Zelka said, shaking his head. “I was just telling Mr. Polla here about it. It is spread by the rakghouls, horrible monsters that live in the Undercity below Taris' great skyscrapers. Prolonged exposure to the Undercity breeds the disease and those infected will eventually mutate into rakghouls themselves, becoming mindless beasts that feed on the flesh of others. Granted, from what Mr. Polla tells me, that would be impossible since you’ve not been down to the lower levels…”

Gwen had to restrain herself from snorting at the name by which Zelka Forn had referred to Carth. “Oh?” she said, a somewhat amused grin spreading across her face as her gaze shifted from the physician to the Republic pilot. “Now I’m curious. What else were you discussing with Mr. Polla?”

She caught Carth’s expression cracking just a bit at her dig, though it seemed that Zelka hadn’t noticed. That much was probably for the better. She could understand Carth’s choice for giving a false name, given the fact that he was a decorated Republic Lieutenant. After all, someone might recognize the name ‘Carth Onasi’... but Polla!? Surely in the days she was unconscious he should have been able to come up with a name better than that...

“Well, I heard the Republic scientists at the military base here on Taris were close to perfecting a cure for it. But the Sith have since overrun the base and are keeping the serum for the patrols they send into the Undercity.” Zelka sighed. “If I could just get my hands on a sample of that serum the rakghoul disease could be wiped from the face of Taris forever…. But nevermind. I don't see how that's going to happen now, and it’s irrelevant anyway to the situation.” He gestured for her to sit in a chair nearby.

She opened her mouth a moment to voice a protest, but caught sight of a look from Carth that made her stop. She leered back at him as she moved to the seat that Zelka had indicated.

“Well then, Miss Dakaal, I hear you’ve suffered some head trauma?” He took out a small light and shone it in her eyes, causing Gwen to instinctually squint and raise a hand to block out the excess light. “Eyes open, please,” the physician added. “What exactly happened?”

The woman struggled to keep her eyes open for him, choosing to focus her gaze passed him in order to aid her efforts. “My associate could tell you better than I,” Gwen said flatly. “I was unconscious, after all…”

“You know,” she Carth say. He seemed to be ignoring her, but she could not see him at the moment to tell for certain. He seemed to be circling back around to the previous conversation with Zelka. “There’s gotta be some way to get ahold of that cure the Republic military were working on…”

Zelka turned away from Gwen, back to Carth for a moment, and the woman used the opportunity to relax her eyes from the light, blinking slowly as strange colored phantom shapes floated across her vision.

“ I don't see how anyone could get their hands on the serum,” Zelka said. “The military base is crawling with Sith guards. Breaking in there would be a suicide mission. I suppose the Sith patrols in the Undercity might have a sample of the serum on them, if they hadn't already used it because of a rakghoul infection. But I doubt a patrol would just hand the serum over. And nobody's stupid enough to attack one of the Sith patrols, even in the Undercity.”

“Well, as soon as we’re off, I’m sure we’ll find some way,” Gwen said, wanting very much to end the conversation so they could get out of there and head to the cantina. Most of the reports were of the escape pods crashing in the Undercity anyway, so who knew! Maybe that actually would happen across a sample of the serum… There might even be some sort of reward, and they could always use access to medical services while stranded on an enemy-controlled planet…

“Please don't say that!” Zelka exclaimed as he turned to her, frantically gesturing with his hands to say no more on the matter. “If the Sith hear you they might think I'm suggesting you start sacking their patrols. They could shut me down! I only mentioned the serum because you asked. I don't actually expect anyone to get me the serum.” The man sighed, letting his arms relax. “Tell me what symptoms you’ve had since you regained consciousness.”

“Well,” Gwen said, “I’ve had a lingering headache, but I also haven’t eaten in a couple days--at least not since before the injury.”

“I don’t see any signs of lingering damage from your injury,” he continued. “The headache you described is likely from hunger, not lingering effects of concussion. Now, is there anything else I can do for you?”

“Nope!” she said, standing promptly. “I think that about wraps things up here….”

“Not so fast,” Carth interjected, catching her arm as she attempted to walk passed him toward the exit. He then spoke again to Zelka. “We heard some rumors about Republic escape pods having crashed in the Undercity from the recent space battle overhead. You wouldn’t happen to know anything about that, would you?”

“Republic escape pods? Uh... no… That’s a strange question,” Zelka laughed. “Why would you ask me that? I don't know. Those pods crashed in the Undercity, I'm not involved in any way!”

Gwen turned back, raising an eyebrow at the man’s reaction to the question. “You seem awfully defensive about this,” she muttered. She’d seen more than enough bad liars in her time to spot it when someone was so obviously hiding something.

“I'm not defensive! I just don't like being accused of knowing something about those Republic pods.” And then Zelka scoffed. “This is as bad as an interrogation by the Sith!”

Carth winced. It would seem he hadn’t anticipated Gwen commentary, and was disturbed by how Zelka had been suddenly put off. “Don't worry, we’re not with the Sith. We won't betray your secret if you tell us…. Uh… not that you’re hiding anything, that is.” Carth rubbed the back of his head sheepishly. Whether or not Zelka would trust them with any further information remained to be seen.

“The Sith were already here,” the clinician huffed, “asking these same questions you are now. I'll tell you what I told them. I don't know anything about those pods. Now, is there something else you need?”

“We need a better answer than that,” Gwen said. If Zelka Forn actually knew anything about the crashed escape pods, then it could prove most useful in their quest to find Bastila and get off of this rock. “If you know something, you should tell us. Like my associate said, we don’t work for the Sith. But if you are hiding something, the Sith will find out eventually, and they will come here again. It’s in your best interest to help us. I think you want to…”

“I…. I want to….” Zelka said slowly. He seemed to be much calmer as he did so. “Well... you don't look like you're with the Sith. I guess… I guess I can tell you my secret. Or rather, I can show you…”
Zelka Forn walked over to the door that Gwen had seen previously and punched a code into the access pad. The large door slid open, revealing a series of kolto tanks, a few of them with familiar-looking men and women floating inside of them.

“Hey... I recognize these men,” Gwen murmured, approaching one of the tanks. “They're Republic soldiers!...”

“You... you recognize these soldiers?” Zelka asked. “But how? Unless... unless you're friends of the Republic!”

Carth raised his hands. As if to try to prevent Zelka from doing anything rash. “Looks, I have a feeling we’re on the same side here,” Carth said. “We’re friends of the Republic.” He conveniently left out the part about them also having been on the same ship the soldiers in the tanks were from. After all, they were already putting themselves at risk here. There was no point in sharing more information than necessary… “We’re friends of the Republic. You can trust us.”

“Since the space battle overhead,” Zelka explained, “people have been secretly bringing in these Republic soldiers who crash-landed on the planet. I had to take them in. What choice did I have? Their injuries are terrible, most won't survive. But at least I can make their last days more comfortable. And at least here they are hidden away from the Sith.”

Carth let out a sigh of relief. “Well, for that you have my thanks,” he said, clasping the other man’s shoulder briefly. “It's good to know that at least some of these men ended up in compassionate hands.”

“I hate to imagine what the Sith would do if they discovered these soldiers here,” Zelka continued. “But since their initial questioning the Sith have not returned, so it may be my fears are unfounded.”

“Is there anything we can do to help?” Gwen asked, turning back toward Carth and Zelka. While they were in a hurry to find Bastila and get off, and while it would be easier for them to remain unnoticed if they were in a smaller group, she couldn’t help but to feel a sense of pity wash over her at the sight of her former comrades in such a state.

“I'm afraid there is nothing more anyone can do for these soldiers,” Zelka said. “Now, if you'll excuse me I should return to the front in case anyone comes in needing medical attention.”

The clinician stepped away, closing the door but leaving it unlocked for Gwen and Carth to exit of their own accord.

“Well,” Gwen said, shrugging with a bit of unease, “at least we know we’re not the only survivors.”

“It’s a good thing,” Carth said somewhat somberly. “It means there’s even more chance that Bastila survived as well.”

“Yeah, I guess you’re right…” There was a twisting in Gwen’s stomach that reminded her current hunger and she winced. “Standing here’s not going to do us any good though. I think we should gather more info--at the cantina! I’m starving.” And she let out an exasperated sigh.

A smile tugged at the corner of one of Carth’s lips as he let out a single laugh. “I guess we can head over now… Wouldn’t want you passing out on me after all!”

Gwen rolled her eyes and moved to the door, beating the switch with the side of her first, causing it to open as she walked out toward the exit of the clinic, the pilot scurrying briskly after her once he say she was leaving. They were stopped, however, by a voice when they reached the door leading out of the clinic.

“Psst. You there! Wait a minute. I need to talk to you about the rakghoul serum. I've got an offer for you you might want to hear.” it was the assistant they had seen working on the droid previously.

“Not interested,” Gwen said dismissively, and she continued to move toward the exit.

“Oh, don't be an idiot,” the man said, moving to block them from exiting. “Just listen to me for one minute and you won't be sorry. Davik Kang wants the cure, and you'd be smart to give it to him.”

Gwen placed her hands on her hips, regarding the man with a rather unamused expression on her face. “Davik Kang? Who's that?”

“Oh, come on – everybody knows who Davik Kang is! He's the big boss around here. Gambling, smuggling, extortion – he's got a piece of all the action on Taris.”

“You mean Davik's a crime lord?” Carth said, now seemingly rather unamused by the conversation also.

“I prefer to think of him as a role model,” the man continued in a rather grating voice. “He started with nothing, and now he's got it all: credits, power, women. It's the Tarisian dream, right?”

“Why does Davik want the cure so badly?” Gwen asked, rolling her eyes as she did so.

“Davik's interested in anything that can turn a profit. He could make a fortune selling the serum to anyone infected with the disease – not like Zelka, who'll practically give it away.”

“I think we'd rather give the serum to Zelka,” Carth said. “He'll use it to help people.”

“Helping people is all well and good,” the assistant harrumphed, “but you have to help yourself first, right? I'm telling you Davik will pay big credits for the cure. More than Zelka could ever afford.”

Gwen considered a moment. Credits would be a big help if they were going to get off of Taris. After all, they would need a ship… “Where can we find Davik if we want to give him the cure?” she asked, folding her arms.

Carth looked at her a moment in seeming disbelief. She tried as best she could to ignore his gaze of disapproval.

The assistant smirked. “Davik isn't the kind of guy you can just walk up to, you know? He likes to keep his business at arm's length. The best thing to do is take the rakghoul serum to Zax. He runs the Lower City bounty office, but everybody knows he also works for Davik. He'll make it worth your while.”

“And why do you care who gets the cure?” Gwen asked, narrowing her eyes at him. The man seemed parasitic as a mynock…

“Look, Zelka can't afford to pay me much,” the assistant explained. “If you sell the serum to Davik, I can probably get a nice finder's fee for directing you to him.”

“What if I tell Zelka you're helping Davik get the cure?” Carth interjected. It seemed he was having none of the idea, despite how lucrative it could prove.

“Hmph! I'll just deny it,” the assistant said with a shrug. “Who's Zelka going to believe – me, or some off-world stranger? Now, be smart about this. You'll get a better deal selling to Davik.”

“And then only the rich could afford the cure. Just let the poor suffer, right?” Carth said.

The assistant frowned, glaring at the pilot. “Look, if you find the rakghoul serum, just take it to Zax in the Lower City bounty office. He works for Davik. He'll pay you what that cure is really worth!” And with that, the man stepped aside, allowing them to pass.

Once Gwen and Carth were a bit a ways from the clinic, Gwen spoke first. “That guy gave me the creeps,” she commented.

Why would you even consider something like selling a cure to a crime lord?” Carth asked her. He still seemed to be in disbelief at what he had heard. “You saw what Zelka was doing in there. He’s a good man…”

“Yeah, but we need the credits, Carth. Last I checked, even if we do find Bastila, we can’t get off Taris without a ship…”

“Look, I’m not saying you’re wrong, I just… I think we should consider this carefully before we make any decisions of the sort. I mean, who knows if we’ll even find it while we’re looking…”

“Yeah, well unless you have a better idea for how to get enough funds to get out of here, I think we should consider his offer… but enough of this. Let’s get to the cantina or I really am going to pass out on you.”


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Author of: Only Light Can Cast Shadow A pre-KotOR Fem!Revan Fic

Twisted Morality (Part III of "Only Light Can Cast Shadow")

I leave my alignment to fate--Light or Dark

Lord_S_Gray
Knight Commander
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Force Alignment: 171
Posts: 1163



« Reply #39 on: November 12, 2019, 07:12:43 PM »

That takes me back to happier days wasting away hours between university lectures playing Kotor....and the level of detail you've got in here...wow...already can see stirrings of a sort between Gwen and Carth 'don't roll your yes at me' LOL and her evasive nature, not quite the full dark path, but not pure light either, more a world weary middle ground.
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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."

Lady Revan
Knight Commander
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Force Alignment: -1033
Posts: 2316


I leave my alignment to Fate-whether Light or Dark


« Reply #40 on: November 13, 2019, 02:27:42 AM »

That takes me back to happier days wasting away hours between university lectures playing Kotor....and the level of detail you've got in here...wow...already can see stirrings of a sort between Gwen and Carth 'don't roll your yes at me' LOL and her evasive nature, not quite the full dark path, but not pure light either, more a world weary middle ground.

Hello LSG! Those have really been my goals for early Gwen, so I'm glad they came across clearly in the writing. Gwen and Carth are going to be a primary focus of Part III (and IV and V, because I am a a sucker for Revanasi >.>), so I'd really like to avoid the reader getting to know too much about either one of them until they're getting to know one other. Gwen's middle ground is something I'm finding a bit difficult to maintain, so I'm also very glad that came across in this section. Thank you so much for your feedback! The next section is almost finished, because I'd intended to have it and the last two I just posted all in one post, but character limits put a stop to that. Anyway, I know for a fact that the section following will most likely be too close to the limit to include anything else with it, so expect the much smaller in between section sometime very soon Smiley Again, thank you so much for your regular reviews. They always broughten my day to read.
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Author of: Only Light Can Cast Shadow A pre-KotOR Fem!Revan Fic

Twisted Morality (Part III of "Only Light Can Cast Shadow")

I leave my alignment to fate--Light or Dark

Lady Revan
Knight Commander
*

Force Alignment: -1033
Posts: 2316


I leave my alignment to Fate-whether Light or Dark


« Reply #41 on: November 19, 2019, 03:27:49 AM »

I know it's short. This was supposed to be included with the last two, but the middle one of those 3 was too long to post other than by itself :/



CHAPTER THREE: SEEKING SHELTER FROM THE STORM (Part 5 of ?) [probably of 10]

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Commander Saul Karath was on the observation deck of the Leviathan gazing at the blueish white planet below that was Taris. Three days had already passed since the battle against the Endar Spire, and the debris of what little remained from the Republic Hammerhead-Class Cruiser had dispersed. Lord Malak would be arriving soon. He hoped that they would have the Jedi Bastila in custody by that time. It was not wise, after all, to displease the Dark Lord.

So far, all of their search efforts had yielded very little in terms of results. There were finally reports of the Endar Spire’s escape pods being found mostly in the Undercity, but little other than that. It had seemed that they were stripped clean by scavengers and swoop gangs in that level very soon after the crash had happened. A pity, since any personal items or items of value might have been able to be used to track their wanted Jedi.

There were a couple of survivors they had managed to find and tried to bring in for interrogation, but they had been in such bad shape that they were not able to survive the process or not willing to give up anything of use to them. It was for this purpose that a Dark Jedi follower had since been sent to act as planetary governor during the occupation. In addition to leading the search efforts, he might be able to use some sort of dark side interrogation method in order to Force the information from a prisoner’s mind if they truly knew anything relevant to their search.

“Reporting,” came a voice from behind. Saul turned away from the viewport to witness the lead intelligence officer, Director Roland, hailing salute. The Director had been placed in charge of monitoring the search efforts on Taris.

“Go on,” Admiral Karath said to the officer, clasping his hands behind him as he waited for the report.

“Intelligence from our Undercity scouts have reported findings of additional escape pods in the lower levels,” Roland said. “While they’ve all been stripped like the others, a couple of them show signs of skirmish outside, most likely due to an encounter between the Republic fugitive onboard and the local swoop gangs. Our men are attempting infiltration of the swoop gangs’ bases, but it’s proving somewhat difficult due to the lower city Rakghoul problem. We have the antidote from the former Republic military base for the disease the Rakghouls carry, but quantities are scarce, so we can only send a few troopers at a time. We’ve adjusted our search patterns to focus on areas surrounding where this particular crash site was found.”

“Excellent,” the admiral replied. “Alert me the moment there is any further discoveries. You are dismissed, director.”

Director Roland Saluted again before turning on his heels and leaving the observation deck of the Leviathan. Once the director was gone, Admiral Karath returned his focus to the bluish hue of the planet below. While it was certainly good news, it wasn’t nearly enough. Lord Malak would be there soon, and if he didn’t have news satisfactory to the Dark Lord’s expectations upon his arrival, the consequences could be severe. After all, Lord Malak was not one to tolerate failure. Saul Karath needed to ensure that any ‘failures’ were not on his part. The Jedi Bastila Shan would be found, he had determined that, even if it meant stripping Taris level by level while searching for her.


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Author of: Only Light Can Cast Shadow A pre-KotOR Fem!Revan Fic

Twisted Morality (Part III of "Only Light Can Cast Shadow")

I leave my alignment to fate--Light or Dark

Lady Revan
Knight Commander
*

Force Alignment: -1033
Posts: 2316


I leave my alignment to Fate-whether Light or Dark


« Reply #42 on: January 03, 2020, 11:46:24 PM »

CHAPTER THREE: SEEKING SHELTER FROM THE STORM (Part 6 of ?) [probably of 10]

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CARTH ONASI

   The Taris Upper City Cantina was a rather large and bustling place, yet with a certain amount of sophistication to it when compared to your average, every-day cantina. There were members clearly of the Tarisian noble class hanging about, and a private lounge just for patrons of this status. There was a high stakes pazaak table near the entrance that Carth and Gwen passed on their way to the central bar. The two took a seat and ordered.

   It had been a bit unnerving coming there. After all, they’d passed several Sith Troopers patrolling the streets, and one had even been standing guard posted at the front entrance of the cantina. It would be impossible for them to avoid the Sith entirely on this planet. They would just have to try to do what they could to keep their low profile until they could find Bastila and secure passage off of this Sith-controlled planet.

   Carth took a sip of the Tarisian ale he’d ordered when the bartender brought it to him. A wave of expressions streamed over his face upon the initial entry on the palate, and he finished his first sip gritting his teeth. It was far stronger than he’d expected. He’d not had time to try the stuff last time he was on Taris. After all, it was during the previous war, and the Republic forces had only just recaptured the planet from Mandalorian control. As he was fleet, he wasn’t ever groundside for very long. Most of that work had been led by the Jedi.

   He shook his head and took another sip at that thought. It was ironic, really. Once upon a time, the Jedi Revan’s forces had taken back Taris from the Mandalorians and saved the planet. And now, the very Jedi who had aided them before had conquered the planet once more. Only this time, it was in the name of the Sith. And they hadn’t really ‘conquered,’ no…. The Tarisian upper class had never forgotten Revan’s aid in the Mandalorian Wars, and when Revan and Malak had returned to conquer the Republic, the nobles of Taris had submitted willingly. Now, it was quite clear from what he’d seen so far that the majority of Taris’ citizens didn’t agree with the decision, but the class system of Taris had created a society in which the few voices of the rich outweigh the voices of the masses.

   He glanced over at Gwen, who was seated on the stool beside him at the bar with her head propped on her up by her hand with an elbow on the counter, while the fingers of her opposite hand tapped impatiently in sequence as she waited on her food. There was a glass of some sort of nectar in front of her. Carth had discouraged his companion from stronger beverages, given the fact that she was still recovering, and had eventually succeeded in having her agree despite her initial reluctance.

   He was enjoying his ale and trying to block out the tapping when he suddenly heard Gwen’s voice. “So is now a better time to get to know a little more about you, Carth?”

   He set his drink down and turned more directly toward her this time. Her finger tapping had stopped and her brows raised as she looked him dead in the eye with some degree of expectancy which told Carth she wasn’t going to let him ignore her request. He sighed a little before responding to her.

   “Well, I've been a star-pilot for the Republic for years. I've seen more than my share of wars… I fought in the Mandalorian Wars before all this started. But with all that, I've never experienced anything like the slaughter these Sith animals can unleash. Not even the Mandalorians were that senseless.” Carth swallowed. He’d seen far too many images that haunted his mind still from his experiences in the war. Avoiding discussion let him push them back but that wasn’t really an option in the current situation. He couldn’t fault Gwen for wanting to know a little about him. After all, it was just the two of them stuck there until they could locate Bastila. This meant, however, that he’d need to tread his own memories with a degree of caution. He continued. “My homeworld was one of the first planets to fall to Malak's fleet. The Sith bombed it into submission, and there wasn't a damned thing our Republic forces could do to stop them!”

   “Calm down. I was just asking. Geesh…”

   He blinked a moment, then realized his hand was clenched into a fist so tightly that his knuckles had begun to go white. He relaxed his hand, flexing his fingers a little in retraction. “You're the one who wanted to know more about me,” he said, attempting to keep a cool air about him. “Well this is it, this is what I am. I'm just a soldier; I go where the fleet Admirals tell me to. I follow my orders and I do my duty.”

   “Yeah, well you're talking like it's your fault about the war and your planet. Like you failed somehow….”

   “It shouldn't be my fault. I did everything I could… I followed my orders and did my duty. That shouldn't mean I failed them! I didn't!” His voice was betraying him. It had grown more seeped with emotions. He could still see the glow of embers that charred the surface of Telos after the Sith attack. The dead and dying were all around, friends and loved ones among them. Innocents dying there in the streets. He could still hear their voices, their screams, their cries for help…

   ‘Someone get a medic over here now! Please! She’s still alive! A medic! It’s not too late to save her. It’s not too late…

   “Hey, why are you getting so mad at me? It's not like this was my fault!”

   Gwen’s voice brought him back away from Telos’ surface and to that posh little Tarisian cantina where they were seated. Her good seemed to have arrived while he had been talking, but she’d not started eating yet. Instead, she was looking at him with what appeared to be concern.

   “I know that,” I know that he said, hoping to dissuade any impressions he might have given of blaming her for what was, but shouldn’t have been, his own failure. “I'm not angry at you… don't think that. I…. I just…” He let out a frustrated sigh. “ I'm sorry. I'm not making much sense, am I?” He shook his head. “ Look, you probably mean well with your questions. I'm just not accustomed to talking about my past very much. At all, actually. I'm more used to taking action… keeping my mind focused on the business at hand. So let's just do that. If you have more questions, ask them later.”

   “Right,” Gwen said, turning her attention instead to her meal. Carth picked up his mug again and took another sip of ale, desperately trying to push aside the memories that threatened to spring forth through his own emotional blocks. Now wasn’t the time to think of Telos. He had to focus on their mission to find Bastila so that the Sith could be stopped and an end could be brought to this war. Failure wasn’t an option this time. He had to go through with this, if it was the last thing he did….

   “I'm sorry, Carth…”

   He paused, but he did not look at his companion as she spoke. He was in no mood for such.

   “....It must have been a very painful experience for you,” Gwen finished saying.

   “Yeah, well, I’ve just made it a point to not let that sort of thing happen again,” Carth said. He debated, for a brief moment, chugging the rest of his ale, but decided against such. After all, if he finished too soon, he’d have nothing to do while his companion ate, and might get lassoed back into another conversation. Additionally, with how strong Tarisian ale was, he wasn’t certain it would be the smartest move for him to be able to remain at optimum functionality during their first outing on Taris. They needed information on those crashed escape pods still, and the cantina, even with the number of patrons it had seemed blissfully free of Sith presence inside of its doors. Here, it would likely be relatively safe for them to conduct their questioning of the locals on the matter.

   Carth paced himself with the ale until he saw Gwen was close to finishing her meal, and then signaled the waiter to bring them their checks. Once they had paid, Carth rose from the barstool where he had been seated and stretched a little. “Well, I guess it’s back to business,” he said. “Feeling better now?” he asked.

   Gwen nodded, rising also. “Much,” she replied. “Sorry if I came off a bit… ungrateful.”

   Carth had to hold back a snort, but apparently his thoughts had still manifested themselves at least partially in his facial expressions, because his companion shot him a leer all the same. He coughed in an attempt to excuse himself, which only caused her to roll her eyes. “N-no,” Carth insisted with a chuckle, putting his hands up to indicate he meant no offense. “Not ungrateful… I suppose I’d be a bit grumpy first waking up out of a three-day near coma too…”

   He looked at her, plastering on an uneasy smile, but her expression remained hard and relatively unchanging. She held his eyes, staring at him for a moment before her lips twisted into a suppressed smile and she snorted back a laugh of her own. While it did male Carth feel much more at ease, he couldn’t help but to wonder what was going on in that head of hers. He still wasn’t fully convinced of the physician Zelka’s assessment of her.

   He contemplated commenting on her odd behavior before a commotion caught both of their attentions as a large number of patrons began flocking toward the viewscreens lining the walls of the cantina.

   “Hurry!” they heard someone say. “The match is about to start.”

   “What’s the point?” came another patron’s voice. “It’s only Gerlon and Duncan again.

   Curiosity about the commotion for the upcoming ‘match’ drew both Carth and Gwen to join the other patrons watching the viewscreen in the cantina.

   “Ladies and gentlemen,” came an announcer’s voice. “I draw your attention to the dueling ring. Here, two combatants will battle for your viewing and gambling enjoyment. Now, I hope all your bets are down, because we're ready to roll! In this corner, I give you... Gerlon Two-Fingers! And over here, looking to climb the ranks yet again is the ever-persistent Deadeye Duncan!”

   On the viewscreen, there were two men standing on opposite ends of a large circular arena. When the camera zoomed in on the combatants, the younger of the two appeared to be missing fingers on his right hand (Carth could only assume that this was ‘Gerlon Two-Fingers’) and the other a bit older, as his hair was greying. Reason would venture to assume that the older man was the one whom the announcer had referred to as ‘Deadeye Duncan.’ Both men were armed with blasters, hands at rest, waiting for the signal for the dual to begin.

   A sound flared, signaling for the duel to begin. However, it came so suddenly that it seemed to startle ‘Deadeye’ enough that he dropped his blaster. As he reached down to pick it up, ‘Two-Fingers’ was already firing and hit him, causing Deadeye to fall. And just like that, as suddenly as the match had started, it was all over.

   The announcer’s voice sounded again. “And, to nobody's great surprise, Deadeye is down again. Don't worry, folks – he's just unconscious. As usual. Our medics will have him up and about in a bit. Well, that was quick, wasn't it? So I give you the winner... Gerlon Two-Fingers!

   People had already begun clearing from the viewscreen area before the announcer had even begun his concluding statements. It seemed from the crowd’s reactions that the outcome was already expected to turn out the way it had.

   Carth reached to touch Gwen’s arm to indicate they should start their rounds of questioning, but stopped short. He recalled her reaction to when he’d done similar during their visit to the clinic, and thought perhaps he’d better not. Instead, he called her name. “Gwen? Gwen, we should get going. We have a lot to do still.”

   Gwen, who had seemed to be wrapped up in watching the medics as they removed Deadeye Duncan from the arena, turned to look at him. “Hmm? Oh…. I guess you’re right. Where do you think we should start? Won’t it sound suspicious if we just go around asking anyone about the escape pods?”

   She did make an excellent point. Sith presence or not, they would need to be cautious. After all, it would be foolish to assume that all Tarisian’s loyalties lied with the Republic. He’s learned that the hard way….

   “We keep it casual,” Carth said decisively. “If anyone asks, we’re spacers who got stuck by the planetary quarantine after we stopped for supplies.”

   Gwen nodded in affirmation and stepped away from the viewscreen, headed toward the music lounge. There were several people sitting and standing, listening to the Bith band play and watching the Twi’lek dancers. They were some of the few positions in the upper city where alien species were readily accepted. In this particular case, it was because of their species’ reputations in the performing arts. While they were acceptable as entertainers to the upper city citizens, it was understood by all parties that the respect for them ended there, sad as it was.

   "Well, hello there!” the pair heard upon stepping through the entry to the music room. “I see from your exotic appearance that you are not from Taris originally. Allow me to introduce myself – my name is Jergan.” The man--Jergan--was seemingly directing his introduction toward Gwen.
The woman flashed a smile, moving forward, which admittedly confused Carth. He’d not known her for very long, but it seemed a bit out of character compared to what he had come to know of her. “Pleased to meet you. My name's Gwen.” Was she flirting with him? It hardly seemed like the time… though they did need information. Perhaps this was just the woman’s way of being ‘subtle’ with her questioning.

“What do you think of our local music?” Jergen asked. “The band is quite good, wouldn't you agree? They're on the verge of intergalactic stardom, you know.”

“It's different, but I like it,” Gwen said.

“Obviously you have an ear for music,” he continued in an approving tone. “Mark my words, they'll be famous soon enough. They were about to go on tour before this Sith quarantine stranded them here. Would you like to meet the band after the show? Maybe have a brief brush with fame before they become intergalactic superstars? I can arrange it, you know.”

Gwen raised her eyebrows as her expression shifted to one of mild surprise. “Oh really? And just how will you arrange that?”

“I have a sort of standing arrangement with one of the Rodian bodyguards backstage. For the small sum of twenty credits, he'll let me set up a meeting with you and the band.”

Gwen snorted, trying to hold back a laugh. “I think I’ll pass, thanks.”

“Are you certain? This is a once in a lifetime opportunity – meet the legends before they were famous. All it will cost you is a small handful of credits.”

The woman folded her arms. “Sounds like you're running a scam to me.”

“You sting me with your words!” Jergen said, feigning hurt. “I merely thought I could offer you the rare opportunity to meet a celebrity before they were famous. But I see you're not interested. That's too bad. They really are charming fellows. Very well, then – I hope you enjoy the music. If you change your mind come speak with me again.”

Gwen rolled her eyes and began to walk away, at which point, Carth thought it might be better to try to continue the conversation himself. After all, they’d not really gotten any useful information from him as of yet, and this man might still know something useful to them.

“Excuse me,” Carth said attempting to address Jergen himself, but he didn’t get very far before the other man waved in a dismissive gesture.

“Look, no hard feelings, my good man, but I can't really talk with you right now,” Jergen said, lowering his voice, presumably so no one else in the music room would overhear. “It's difficult enough to draw the interest of the ladies in this establishment as it is. Surely you understand what I'm talking about. I'd guess you've experienced many lonely evenings... something I'm hoping to avoid tonight.” He gestured a bit with his head toward Gwen. “Good luck.”

Before Carth had the chance to protest the insinuation, Jergen had started moving. It seemed he had spotted his next prospect across the room. The pilot shook his head at the comments and went to go find Gwen again, who was already mid-conversation with another male patron.

“Someone sure makes fast friends,” he muttered under his breath as he moved to stand behind her.

“It's good to talk about this stuff – It gets pretty lonely up at the military base,” Carth overheard the man she was talking to say. “I have to get going soon – I've got a shift at the base... but some of us junior Sith officers are having a party tonight to blow off some steam. I'd really like to see you again. Why don't you drop by the party? It’s at the apartment complex next door to the base, apartment A-06.”

“Oh, I dunno,” Gwen said coyly. “Not sure I have anything suited to wear back on the ship. I wasn’t exactly planning on going to any parties during our supplies stop…”

“You know, just because I'm with the Sith doesn't mean I don't know how to have a good time. You'll enjoy yourself. I promise. Don't be late. We're starting right after our shifts end. And don’t worry. Most of us won't even be going back to the base to lock up our uniforms, so I’m sure you’ll look fine. I look forward to seeing you there.”

Carth cleared his throat once the man had left. “An off-duty Sith, Gwen? Really?”

“What? He seemed nice enough…” she replied dismissively.

“You can’t be serious. We’re trying to keep a low profile here. You start asking the Sith about the crashed escape pods and somebody is gonna start getting suspicious.”

“Well, I didn’t ask him about the escape pods once I knew he was Sith. I’m stupid, Carth…”

“Well, then what’s this with a party now? We’re not on vacation…”

“I may have just found us a way into the Under City… or did you forget that the planet is under quarantine and the only people allowed to travel to the lower levels are the Sith? Just trust me on this.”

Carth scoffed at the notion. Trust coercing with an enemy junior officer on an enemy-controlled planet? ‘Brilliant,’ he thought sarcastically. “Well forgive me if I’m skeptical at believing that you partying with the enemy is going to help our situation any.”

“Then you’re welcome to stay back at the apartment,” she said flatly as she rolled her eyes. “Me? I’ve got plans for tonight…”

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Author of: Only Light Can Cast Shadow A pre-KotOR Fem!Revan Fic

Twisted Morality (Part III of "Only Light Can Cast Shadow")

I leave my alignment to fate--Light or Dark

Lord_S_Gray
Knight Commander
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Force Alignment: 171
Posts: 1163



« Reply #43 on: January 06, 2020, 02:42:25 PM »

Cool, like the switch up to mainly Carth's POV, and the promise of seeing more of the events from other character POV's in the future, a great way to make your narrative of a well known tale (well to people who played it) more unique and shed new lights on events. 
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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."

Lady Revan
Knight Commander
*

Force Alignment: -1033
Posts: 2316


I leave my alignment to Fate-whether Light or Dark


« Reply #44 on: January 06, 2020, 05:59:50 PM »

Cool, like the switch up to mainly Carth's POV, and the promise of seeing more of the events from other character POV's in the future, a great way to make your narrative of a well known tale (well to people who played it) more unique and shed new lights on events. 

Hello LSG! I think that the first game has a lot of sections better told by some of the other characters' POVs. Smiley Carth's is likely going to end up a fairly frequent POV. In Parts III through V.

On an unrelated note, I hope you and your loved ones are okay. Please stay safe in these fires. Sad
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Author of: Only Light Can Cast Shadow A pre-KotOR Fem!Revan Fic

Twisted Morality (Part III of "Only Light Can Cast Shadow")

I leave my alignment to fate--Light or Dark

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