REVENGE OF THE SITH
Part VII – Betrayal
Jolee was excited, on top of some of his other emotions of dread. He had been greeted with warm greetings, new introductions, as well the skinny on what had been happening since he had slipped away from Coruscant. To say that his suspicions of dread were right on was an understatement.
He didn’t enjoy hearing how someone as young as this Ellis Yoly fellow was throwing his life away and bringing others down with him and he wasn’t blind to see that the person it affected most was Revan. He could see how the events of the past few months and even his years away were taking a toll on him.
So while he agreed the matter at hand needed to be discussed and dealt with, he certainly didn’t want to throw out the opportunity for the crew to lighten up a bit.
His thoughts on Dustil and Mission were confirmed when the young Jedi returned with Revan, the Twi’lek coming only a few moments later, and the way those two were eyeing each other and blushing…well, it did Jolee’s heart good. And he didn’t know about that lieutenant, but he knew something was going on with her and Carth for sure.
For a minute, Jolee thought about his wife — he always did when he saw the looks pass between two people crushing on each other or falling in love — and in those moments, he could never be guilty about his feelings for her or his leaving the Order for her. That’s what love was about — give and take; sacrifices…
Shaking his head clear, Jolee sat himself down in a chair around their makeshift dinning table. He wasn’t sure what kind of food Revan was whipping up — that boy never could use a replicator right — but he thought as long as Carth was in there ‘supervising’ things should turn out fine.
They returned with nerf burgers, something Jolee hadn’t had in quite sometime and the rest of the evening was spent trying to catch up on things. ‘So,’ he said, looking over at Revan. ‘Other than running around the galaxy finding Sith Lords, what else have you done?’
The former Jedi master shrugged. ‘Not much,’ he replied. ‘Just making a nuisance of myself to everyone I can.’
‘Revan, stop,’ Bastila chastised.
‘What?’ he shrugged again. ‘It’s true.’
She shook her head. ‘You’re impossible.’
‘So you’ve said.’
Jolee chuckled. ‘It’s good to see some things never change,’ he commented. ‘Just hope I live long enough to see a wedding.’ His comment was covered up by his glass, but the intended listeners heard it.
‘You know,’ Revan announced, pushing his chair back and standing. ‘I have been meaning to rectify that very issue.’ He walked over to where Bastila sat next to Carth, watching as her jaw dropped when she realized what was about to happen. Sure enough, Revan fell to one knee before her.
‘You drive me insane,’ he began, smiling as an indignant huff came from her lips. ‘But I wouldn’t want anyone other than you. You truly do complete me, Bastila Shan, and while I had planned a sonnet and many a words of grandiose feelings of love, but…I think this should do, yes? I love you, Bas. No other could make me so incredibly happy the way you make me. It would be an honor -‘
Here, he removed a ring he had placed within his pocket. It was a simple gold band with a small gem in the center. ‘No, a privilege if you would marry me.’
‘It’s a wonder how I manage to hang around you,’ she whispered, but there was a smile on her face and a few tears in her eyes.
‘Think you can stand a few more years?’ he asked.
‘I’ll have to, won’t I?’
Revan knew — well, hoped anyway — that she would say yes, but the fact that she practically flew at him in something disguised as a hug, nearly threw him back to the floor. ‘Is that a yes?’ he laughed, feeling her chuckles and tears on his neck.
‘Of course, you prat,’ she sniffed, hitting him on the arm. ‘Do you honestly think I’d turn down a proposal like that?’
‘I would,’ Carth quipped. ‘I thought it lacked creativity.’
‘Quiet you!’ Revan hissed, aiming a punch at Carth’s leg, causing the admiral to laugh in amusement.
While the crew of the Ebon Hawk spent their time laughing and congratulating their comrades, on the distant planet of Ord Radama, on a grassy slope overlooking the budding city, Ellis Yoly and Brianna Kae pledged their lives to one another in front of an acting minister.
Ossus had once been the center of the Jedi; legend said the very beginnings of the Jedi Order began there and the utmost knowledge of the Order, the Great Jedi Library, had once been housed there as well. But it all changed when Exar Kun became a Sith Lord.
He and Ulic had caused an explosion within the Cron Cluster, causing a huge backlash to be hurled toward the planet. While the chaos ensued, the two Sith lords hoped to raid the planet of ancient Jedi artifacts. In fact, this was not the first time Exar Kun had been on the planet. He had once come to lure other Jedi Knights to the dark side and had slain his master, then had taken off with a Sith holocron.
The elderly man known as Kumar had resided in the old semi-demolished building that had once been known as the Great Jedi Library, trying in vein to watch over the few relics that rested there. A couple times he had passed an old tree that he thought might be the transformed Ood Bnar, but he was never certain if it was truth or his old age kicking in. The older gentleman felt a connection with this place, which is why he returned after the planet was deemed habitable again.
Kumar didn’t think about his former years as a Jedi — they were far behind him and for fear, he kept his secret, claiming he just enjoyed the history of the organization — but in his day, he thought he was a good Jedi. He held the ideals that the Order stood for and people like Kun and Qel — Droma truly angered him. He had, at the time, felt they had turned their backs on their masters, on their teachings. Oh, he had learned all about Freedon Nadd and he was in the middle of the war with Kun.
But now, with the Republic facing its own destruction, Kumar spent his time wondering how things got to this state. He often wondered how certain Jedi found themselves lured by the powers of the dark side. He had watched many of his colleagues turn; had heard about many more during the end of the Mandalorian War…it disturbed him how power and promises had lead some of the greatest Jedi to their dooms. And that brought him to the here and now — the place in which the Republic stood to lose far more than an ongoing war. The very galaxy teetered on whether the Republic could hold its own and it seemed it was just a wounded animal, waiting to die.
He wasn’t stupid, of course; he’d heard the reports — an exiled Revan fleeing to the Unknown Regions; an exiled Jedi returning to the Republic and wrecking havoc on it; the Sith trying valiantly to find either one of them. He had also heard the rumors that had cropped up lately, that Revan had returned and was causing havoc within the Senate; the Jedi Order no longer a force to stop invaders; the unknown Jedi exile leading the Sith…he was worried for everything.
He had felt the deaths of his colleagues when the Sith had destroyed Katarr, just as he felt the deaths of those on Malachor some years ago. While he may not have wielded the Force in some time, he still retained his connection.
And right now, his connection to the Force is what saved him from having his head cut off, as a familiar hiss interrupted his musings. Having a quickness from his youth, he removed his lightsaber, stopping the attacking weapon from coming down at him. His eyes widened as he saw the color of the offending object; not red as a Sith lightsaber, but blue.
A Jedi Guardian.
Moving quickly, he was able to block several blows from his opponent, who face was covered by a dark Sith robe and hood. His attacker was also quick, able to counter his blocks and push him further within the library’s chambers.
For his lack of training through the years, Kumar kept up with the attacker, though he felt himself slowing. He wasn’t a young man anymore and his opponent seemed to keep him moving from room to room. Finally, the old librarian made a miscalculated blow, missing the attacker and causing the blue lightsaber to fall across his arm, severing his hand at the wrist. He was only able to make a small cry, before he was thrown back against a wall, colliding with it and sliding down to the floor.
He was dizzy and in great pain as the figure walked over and stood above him. Kumar waited for the final blow, but when seconds passed, he finally looked up at his attacker and gasped. ‘You!’ he exclaimed, before feeling the effects of a well placed Force Lightening to his chest, effectively stopping his heart.
The figure continued to pour the electricity into the body until they felt satisfied that Kumar was dead. The figure smiled, her pristine features glowing with the shade usually attributed to those on the dark side. It had taken her a while to find the old man, but when she had, she could feel the Force flow through him, though she could tell it had been still for some time.
Her masters would be pleased with her when she reported the good news. Just because the Exchange had removed the bounty on Jedi did not mean that it had been removed from the eyes of the True Sith.
The morning on the Necrosis dawned with a meeting of epic proportions. The three new Sith Lords would meet those that had tasked them this most important mission and would bow and serve them on their whim. Atton, Brianna, and Ellis dressed in their Sith robes and walked down the corridor to a meeting room that Ellis had designated especially for this occasion.
At the end of the hall, they turned to the left, entering into the meeting room, where a transmission console sat. Without stopping, Ellis walked to it, and opened a secure communication channel. It didn’t take long before three figures shrouded in robes appeared before them.
‘Ah,’ replied one, male from the tone of his voice. ‘Lord Trayun. We have been expecting your call.’
‘Forgive the lateness of my correspondence, Master.’ The young man bowed. ‘I’d like to introduce you to my apprentices.’
‘Yes,’ replied a second figure. ‘Those you told us about; Lady Salus and Lord Casus, welcome to the order of the Sith.’ Both apprentices bowed as well. ‘Did you recover the Sith holocron from Muzara as we asked?’
‘We did,’ Ellis nodded. ‘Casus and I recovered it. It’s in one of the rooms near our quarters; it’s safe from prying eyes, Master.’
‘Well done, Lord Trayun,’ the male said. ‘We have another assignment for you, if you would like it.’
‘Nothing would give me more pleasure, my lord.’
‘I don’t know how much information the Jedi have given you on our planets,’ the male continued. ‘There is a planet called Khar Delba…’
‘The planet in which Naga Sadow hid a false fortress?’ Ellis asked.
‘You see,’ whispered the third, the first time they had spoken. ‘He is the one.’
‘You are bright, young lord,’ the male figure praised. ‘Certainly you did not come across this information within the Jedi Archives?’
Ellis looked embarrassed for a second, before swallowing and saying, ‘No, Master. It was Revan who taught me that.’
‘He is another assignment for you, Darth Trayun,’ said the second figure. ‘He will need to be taken care of.’
‘That will also be quite pleasurable,’ Ellis said, his voice hard and determined.
‘The planet of Khar Delba holds more than just a false retreat,’ the male voice began. ‘I’m sure it will be in your interest to investigate fully, young lord. It may even help you lure Revan into a trap.’
Brianna gasped, as the implications of what was said revealed itself to her. Ellis glanced at her, eyebrow raised, before smirking and turning back to the hologram. ‘How interesting,’ he murmured. ‘How interesting indeed.’
It had been a few months since Helena Shan had spoken to her daughter and at the time, the younger woman was nursing the fact that the galaxy they lived in was in mortal peril. A Jedi exile had seemed to turn to the Sith and was wrecking havoc on the galaxy; and most devastating was the rumors that this exile was Revan reclaiming his throne. When the truth was revealed, it still didn’t stop Bastila from turning to her mother and questioning whether or not she would see her fiancée again.
So when the transmission came in from her daughter, Helena was pleasantly surprised that 1. her daughter seemed to be in good spirits, 2. Bastila was coming for a visit, and 3. she was getting married.
Helena had hoped that the last piece of news meant her daughter had either found another nice young man to spend her days with or that Revan had returned. While both were good, she truly hoped the latter was true. She missed the young man herself — he did remind her of her late husband somewhat – and she thought his personality complimented Bastila’s temperament.
Helena had a lot to thank the young man for. These last few years she hadn’t even imagined being alive or even seeing her daughter again, but from the time those two walked in to the cantina in Anchorhead, things had never been the same. Revan had paid for the remaining treatments she needed to survive; had even bought her the house she resided in, all because he was deeply in love with Bastila.
The elder woman had plenty of time to think about her hopefully soon to be son-in-law and her daughter — how they had both fallen to the dark side and how they saved each other from it. She didn’t give a flying nerf about their organization’s views on feelings; all she knew was that Revan had saved her, had saved her daughter, and apparently had saved the galaxy on more than one occasion. And for that, she was grateful, regardless of what had happened in the past.
It felt like she had waited hours upon hours and days upon days when she finally heard a familiar knock on her door. She rushed as quickly as she could, opening it and seeing her daughter’s smiling face, and hugged her — something the two of them had truly only started doing since Helena’s hospitalization. Letting her go, Helena leaned back to look at her only child.
Her hair was down about her shoulders and she seemed to be glowing from excitement. The elder woman was struck by how much of a woman her daughter now seemed; she looked relaxed and very beautiful with her hair down, her blue eyes twinkling in merriment. The elder woman was suddenly struck by the sight; with exception to her eyes, she was staring at a female version of her husband — from the hair, to her face, to that smile she had loved when she had first seen it on Galen’s handsome face.
‘Hello again, Mother,’ the younger woman replied, her eyes quickly examining the elder Shan’s features. While the treatments did indeed help, it didn’t ease the passage of time, and once again Bastila was slightly thanking Revan for intervening between the feud that had grown between her and her mother.
‘Bastila.’ Helena said, again struck by the likeness to her husband. ‘You know I was quite surprised when you called and to hear you’re getting married. Who’s the lucky man?’
‘Forgotten me already?’ asked a deep voice, a small chuckle following the statement.
Helena of course had hoped Revan would return, but to see him suddenly appear next her daughter, looking different, but yet the same threw her. He now sported a head of hair, though it was relatively cut short and his goatee had solidified itself, but his smile was the same and she was brought back to the day the two of them had come to see her in the medical facility on Coruscant; how happy they both made each other, how happy this young man had made her daughter.
‘I should give you a good talking to, young man,’ she replied, sternly, watching as Revan hung his head, his face reddening in shame and embarrassment.
‘Hush,’ she scolded. ‘There had better be a damned good reason for you to be gallivanting around the galaxy when my only child is sitting here waiting for you.’ She let that sink in, refusing to see the absolute furious look on her daughter’s face. ‘But…’ she continued. ‘You did make a good impression the first time you came and you were so heart sick when Bastila was gone…’ The young man looked up, eyes hopeful, but sad. ‘I’m sure you use that sad, adorable face when Bastila’s mad at you?’
‘All the time,’ Revan nodded. ‘It’s to garner sympathy.’
Helena laughed out loud, causing Bastila to cringe and Revan to smile. ‘Still the charmer, I see,’ she giggled, walking up to the young man and hugging him. ‘Don’t go and scare me again, you hear me? Because next time I really will hunt you down.’
The elder Shan ushered the two in, insisting they sit, have some tea, and tell her about their wedding. She listened as Revan described his official proposal in front of their friends and crew and how he had wanted to have the wedding on Talravin, by the sea. It wouldn’t be anything large — just Helena and their friends and they would exchange words of love and commitment.
Their friend Jolee had volunteered to oversee the ceremony, bragging he had done a few in his time, but never expanding on that; Carth had not only agreed to stand by Revan’s side, but to give Bastila away as well. Of course Helena would also fulfill that role, but Bastila had asked the pilot if he would, feeling the bond between them was like that of family than anything romantic that had been in his and Revan’s minds.
Helena was supportive, insisting on making the most of the reception. She immediately alerted a restaurant that would cater the small event with refreshment, food, and a cake. When Revan offered to pay for it, she shook her head, saying, ‘After everything you’ve done, dear, let me do this for you.’
All the arrangements would be finished by the end of the week and that’s when the two set their date. The Ebon Hawk crew took their time relaxing and basking in the beauty of the planet. The only hindrance was a message from Kodis Basil and Chancellor Belyn, requesting that Revan, Bastila, and Carth be present at the Chancellor’s ball that would fall within the following week. An attached message from Basil suggested the group not miss this opportunity to set the record straight on their recent activities. Carth reluctantly sent in a reply that the crew, despite protests and misgivings, would be there.
As the countdown to his wedding began to dwindle, Revan found himself back in his nightmarish visions, events that had already taken place, but only now seemed to come to the surface. He had several about being on a ship — his ship — and visiting planets out in the Outer Rim and Unknown Regions. He had a few that involved him and Malak assumably searching for the other Star Maps, just quick glimpses, conversations between the two. Some were of him and others within strongholds; strongholds he hadn’t even remembered having.
But the most disturbing was of him standing in front of various figures – they were out of focus and blurry, but he stood before five of them…and then horrific visions filled his mind, just to suddenly stop as quick as they came. Then he was viewing something, a journal, something…and then he knew where to find the Star Maps and he was telling Malak…
Then there was Malachor and watching as Ellis fell to the floor screaming, feeling so many people die, seeing the horror…
He woke up in a cold sweat, his heart racing, and his mind a jumble of thoughts and feelings. He ran a hand over his hair before resting his head in it. His visions were telling him something, he knew, but they were never straight, never in order to truly understand what they meant.
Who were those figures that surrounded him? And what exactly did he see that told him about the Star Maps? And where these other strongholds he had? He thought he had taken care of everything; that’s why he hadn’t come back. He had to make sure no one made his same mistakes, never realizing the last person he would think to watch was Ellis Yoly.
He took a deep breath and tried to calm himself. Of course Bastila could feel him, sense his turmoil, even from across the city. Her mother had insisted on her staying at home — something about the bride not seeing the groom — and had told him and the crew to lodge in the nearby hotel. Helena was apparently friends with the owner and the crew was allowed to stay for free, due to the upcoming wedding.
I’m fine, my darling.
Liar. You’ve had a dream, haven’t you?
No fooling you, is there?
No. What about?
My past, of course. I think…I think I’m trying to tell myself something, but I’m unaware of what. Everything is so jumbled, I can’t make sense of it.
Do you want to show me?
No, but I will tell Jolee. Perhaps he can help me.
I’m sorry to wake you, Bas.
It’s fine. I was just dreaming about you, is all.
Revan chuckled. Oh? And what about me?
You’ll have to wait until the honeymoon, won’t you?
Woman, you drive me mad!
He could feel the laughter within her and it calmed him as he shifted back under his covers. I miss you.
And I you, my love. Please try and sleep. I refuse to have my future husband dozing off at my wedding.
You’re right, he chuckled. I have a feeling neither of us will get any sleep afterwards.
He smiled, closing his eyes and forcing his dreams to be about his future wife and their children.