Revenge of the Sith: Part IX: Confrontation, page 3

REVENGE OF THE SITH

Part IX – Confrontation

 

 

Lynsel had been quite surprised when Carth had let her in to his quarters. She had been terribly worried about him, ever since he had awoken and learned about Dustil’s injuries. She knew that wasn’t the only thing on his mind, it seems, but she just couldn’t get him to open up to her.

So she watched as he withdrew into himself and hoped he would turn to her — or someone else — to talk to. However, she had been completely miserable without talking to him; she at least needed to make sure he ate dinner or something, anything that would give her the ability to at least speak to him.

So to have his door immediately opened to her – with him dressed down without his flight jacket and just a plain white shirt, his hair ruffled – she wondered if she had inadvertently woken him from a dream. She had shocked herself into admitting how worried she was, more importantly blushing when he smiled at her.

Now, she was in his quarters, being lead to a small couch that was pushed near the wall cattycorner to his desk. He asked if she wanted anything and then apologized for not having anything. And there was that giggle again and then he looked at her, like the night after the ball, right before he kissed her.

“You wanted to talk to me?” she asked, not knowing what this look could mean for her, for them.

Carth nodded.

“You seem like you’re far away,” she whispered. “Is something wrong?”

“Oh!” he sputtered, realizing he had staring at her like a love-sick puppy. “No, it’s…it’s nothing. Sorry.” He chuckled, before taking a seat next to her.

“Doesn’t seem like nothing,” she countered.

He again smiled at her, shaking his head. He sighed, finding the carpet very interesting. “You know my wife died a few years ago,” he began, to which she nodded.

It had been common knowledge those days after Revan and Malak had returned from the Unknown Regions at the head of the Sith. She had heard rumors that the death of his family had driven him mad with insanity and that it had cost him an early promotion to Admiral.

“In the past, I… I’ve just been trying to remember what she looked like. It shouldn’t be so difficult. I can remember things about her… things she did. The way she smiled, what her hair smelled like, our last fight… just not her face. I try to hold it in my head but it’s gone.”

He looked at her sheepishly. “Is… that strange?” he asked, looking away from her, shaking his head. “Maybe I shouldn’t be talking to you about this.”

Lynsel could feel sympathy for this man, this man who had what he wanted only to lose it all in foul swoop. She had debated with herself for months on this journey with the growing feelings she had for Carth.

She wasn’t sure when her feelings of professionalism began to turn, but she had known the night of the ball that she was more than a little interested in Carth Onasi. Scooting closer to him, she laid her hand on his back, trying her best to soothe him.

“It’s not strange, Carth,” she whispered. “You remember the important things.”

“When we…when we were on Thule,” he started. “I saw her again. It wasn’t really her; it was an imposter.”

“How could they have possibly…”

Carth shook his head. “I don’t know, but even when I thought it couldn’t be, it was impossible, some part of me hoped it was her. Hoped I could make up for the things I did, the things I said…but I knew it wasn’t real.”

He sighed again, closing his eyes against the emotions he felt. Lynsel just watched him, wondering if that was all this was for him — a second chance at a life he had lost, in a relationship he had failed in. It made her feel uncomfortable; was that the reasoning behind her own attraction?

“But you know what?” he asked, turning his head to look at her.

“What?”

“I realized that…that I was still holding on to the past,” he stated. “When I watched Saul Karath die, I thought I’d be free; that the revenge I had planned out for three and a half years would…I don’t know — take away all the guilt I felt at not protecting my family. But it didn’t. It didn’t go away at all. I still felt like a world class ass for never being home, for never being around while my son grew up.

“Killing Saul, watching him die on the bridge of the Leviathan did nothing to relieve the ache I still felt. It wasn’t until I met Dustil on Telos, until we reconnected, really reconnected, that I started…started feeling as though…as though things were passing me by.

“Bastila used to tell me that all the women onboard had crushes on me, thought I was attractive and all that. But I couldn’t understand why. I mean…” he shrugged.

“Oh please,” she teased, pushing his shoulder lightly. “Like you aren’t aware of how incredibly sexy you are.” After she said it, she looked away, hoping he couldn’t see the blush that tinted her cheeks.

Carth smiled at her, finding everything about her attractive and sexy. Unfortunately for her, he did notice the blush and it brought a host of images to his mind, particularly whether or not she blushed all over.

“I didn’t think I could ever look at another woman the way I looked at my wife,” he continued, this time holding eye contact with her. “I didn’t think I’d ever fall in love again; I thought it was impossible. But…but I was living in the past. And I didn’t want to let go of the past, didn’t want to let go of her face, of everything we had.”

“So…so what happened?” Lynsel whispered. Everything he said reminded her so much of how she felt after the divorce, when she felt she wasn’t worthy enough for anyone, that her career came first and she was over him and all men. And then of course, she meets Carth.

“I met you.” He was gazing at her, hoping she understood what he meant. “I met you and I couldn’t live in the past anymore and for the first time in years, I didn’t want to. You gave me a future. I want to give you a future, too… with me. I think I could love you, if you give me the chance.”

He looked so unsure, nervous that perhaps she didn’t feel the same. Her face softened as she looked at him; he was everything Robert wasn’t and everything she needed now. It scared her, but she felt more alive than she ever had being the wife of a senator. Placing a hand on his cheek, she said, “I think I could love you too.”

Carth let out a shaky breath, one he didn’t realize he had been holding. He chuckled, nuzzling her hand. “I’m…I’m glad,” he said. “Really glad.”

He closed his eyes, smiling to himself. He hadn’t believed he could be happy again. He thought it couldn’t be possible, but here was this beautiful woman who worried about him, trusted him, fought beside him…was currently kissing him…

Well…that was a definite bonus for sure.

 


 

Mical knew he probably shouldn’t have bothered, but he couldn’t help it. His curiosity had always won out, no matter the situation. Upon learning that his once future master had turned to the dark side and then was now taking up residence within one of the storage units on the Ebon Hawk, he had to see it.

Maybe it was closure — to know that his life as a pseudo-Jedi was truly over — or perhaps it was mild questioning on why his supposed master would turn. What ever the reasons, Mical found himself aboard the Hawk while it sat within the docking bay of the Sojourn.

He wasn’t sure what he thought would greet him as he walked through the main hold, reaching the open storage compartment. He supposed he thought he would see Ellis Yoly as a figurine for the Sith, a hideous monster devoid of all things that made a person truly human, truly aware of their actions, but what he found was not what he expected.

He expected a hulking figure, driven mad by his thirst for power.

What he found was a young man sitting on the hard floor, seemingly meditating.

Ellis — this Darth Trayun — sat cross-legged, hands in his lap, and if not for his ragged breathing, Mical would have worried that the man was dead. When he looked up, Mical could easily see the traces of the dark side in his haggard face, the tell-tale lines that marred the smoothness that had once been there; his eyes looked haunted and if the Republic officer didn’t know any better, he would say the dark lord had been crying.

“Do I know you?” he asked, narrowing his eyes in suspicion.

Mical nodded slightly, bending so that he was at the Sith lord’s level. “We attended the Jedi Academy together; on Dantooine.” If it was possible, Ellis’ eyes narrowed even further. “Unfortunately, you were slightly older than I, so we never officially met exactly. I’m Mical.” The young historian shot his hand out in greeting, but his companion just stared at it before looking back up at him.

“Did Revan send you?” he asked.

Mical shook his head. “No,” he said. “I’m here on my own choice.”

“Why?”

“I…” The man stuttered, not sure what his answer should be. He couldn’t out right admit it was curiosity that drew him here, but he couldn’t think of anything that was remotely correct on assumption.

“Did you come here to brag?” the Sith lord asked. “Come to see for yourself what a Sith looks like? Don’t think I can’t sense what you’re thinking. You may have felt the Force, but you are no where at my level. Admit it, this is just some freak show to you, isn’t it?”

Mical shook his head. He didn’t want him thinking that! Especially when deep down, that’s what it felt like he was doing.

“Did you want me to demonstrate, Mical?” Ellis sneered. “Do you wonder what it must feel like to be tortured by the darker side of the Force? Or did you come looking for guidance on how to rid yourself of the shackles and chains the Republic has you in?”

“That’s enough, General.”

Both men turned to find Bao-Dur standing at their side. Ellis gave a low chuckle. “Well, the gang’s all here, aren’t they?” he muttered. “I wonder who Revan will dig up next. Malak? Arren Kae? It’s just one big happy Mandalorian War party. Let’s head off to Dxun and kill some, shall we?”

He chuckled again, before his face went slack and his eyes held a pained expression. It quickly passed, leaving a melancholy expression on his face. He lowered his head, whispering, “Please, leave me.”

Without a word, the Iridonian signaled for the historian to follow him, leaving the dark lord alone in his chambers.

Mical followed the young techie to the garage, where the alien turned and faced him. “I hope you weren’t making some spectacle of him,” he chastised.

The historian quickly shook his head. “No,” he stated. “It wasn’t like that at all. I just…I just…” he let out a sigh. “I’m not really sure exactly what I intended to do. Maybe I just wanted to see him, talk to him…”

“You know him then?”

Mical nodded. “As I told him, we attended the Jedi Academy together,” he said. “However, he was a few years older than I and when he went to fight in the Mandalorian War, I decided to leave the academy.”

“That takes some guts,” Bao replied. “I didn’t think most could easily turn away from the Force. You see what it’s done to him.”

“It’s quite easy to leave the Force behind you when you’ve never felt it so strongly.”

The two men stood in silence, each contemplating what had been said and that of the young man that sat within the storage compartment. “Do you plan on learning it?” Bao asked.

“I suppose with the Sith coming after us, it should be something we should both consider.”

 


 

The next morning saw most of the Ebon Hawk within the meeting room aboard the Sojourn. Revan had called them all together in order to discuss what their next move was and what they would be doing with their captive.

Revan had been thinking about that all night long. He was torn at what he should truly do with Ellis — the Jedi in him begged for redemption, as the Jedi had given him, while the Sith within him cried for revenge at everything his former friend had done.

He remembered the rage he had felt when he faced Malak, the man who had once been his best friend and had taken on the appearance of a man who had tried to kill him. It was only at the end that Revan had seen the error of their ways, that the dark side had clouded their minds.

Of course, it was only after things had settled some what, that he saw the true error.

The bright spot in all of this was the fact that his visions seemed to be coming true with Bastila’s announcement. Of course, that only further thoughts to Ellis and the fact that his own wife was expecting and was now in the hands of the Sith. While Bastila obviously disapproved of his methods, Revan had at some point decided he would take his frustrations over the Sith out on his former friend.

He had made a series of snide comments to the dark lord, taunting him with the fact that while his own wife stood by his side, Ellis’ had the definite possibility of being dead. He knew it was crass, but for some reason, he got a strange satisfaction from watching Ellis’ face darken and cloud over.

He enjoyed making the young man miserable by keeping him locked up within the storage compartment and he certainly enjoyed lording over the fact that he, Revan, held all the cards, especially knowing that Ellis’ fate and that of his family were in his hands.

While he had told everyone this would be a planning session, Revan had absolutely no plan what so ever. With the knowledge that the Republic forces were refusing to help, Revan basically had little or no military back up this time around.

He knew he could call on Zaalbar and the wookies if needed or even Queen Talia, but the way things were on Onderon, he would have to rule Talia and her troops as no shows. He needed any and all information that Ellis would give and he knew that would be hard in the process.

He waited until everyone had arrived and sat before he launched into a shaky overview of his confrontation with Ellis. “So, are we turning him over or what?” Mission asked.

Revan shook his head and sighed. “We can’t,” he stated. “At least not yet. We need him to find the True Sith.”

“And then what?” asked Mical. “What do we do once we find the true species?”

Again, Revan sighed. “That’s where we run into trouble,” he admitted. “I went to see the Senate a bit ago and the Supreme Chancellor flat out told me that the Republic wouldn’t aid us in this fight.

“While that’s bad in its own way, the fact that Onderon and Queen Talia have been attacked and are presumably under Sith control, we’ve lost a good portion of support. I know Zaalbar would help us, but I’m afraid the wookies wouldn’t be enough.”

“So what do we do then?” asked Carth. “Surely you don’t think that the seven of us can take on the entire Sith?”

“If this had been a few years ago,” he began. “I would say that we could do it. After all, we had defeated the Sith then. But now…believe me, Carth, if there was a way…”

Revan sighed for a third time, before taking a deep breath. “This all lies with Ellis. He’s the key to finding them and maybe even helping us defeat them.”

“But why?” Mission asked. “Why would he help us? And how could we trust him after everything he’s done?”

The look in Revan’s eyes was a hard one and the group could see it instantly. “He has no choice,” he stated. “If anything, he has more to lose than us. And as to trusting him, he’s aware of the price if he dares turns on me, on us. He’ll help us before we help him.”

The ominous tone in his voice startled some of the group, but it seemed that it was just a brief lapse for Revan. He immediately began pacing, something of a nervous habit he had always had. “The first thing we need to do is get in contact with Canderous and the others on Onderon.”

“I’ve got some people working on that now, Rev,” Carth replied. “We’re trying every frequency we can think of in order to get in contact over there. We can’t lose Onderon, especially not after we freed it from Vaklu’s grasp.”

“Revan,” Lynsel spoke up, the first time she had spoken since the meeting had begun. “Why didn’t the Supreme Chancellor want to support you?”

“There was opposition to what I had to say.”

“Started by whom?” she asked. He didn’t respond, nor did he look at her, even as she tried to catch his attention. “It was Robert, wasn’t it? He was the opposition.” Revan only nodded. Lynsel set her jaw, nodding to herself. “There’s something going on in the Senate.”

“When isn’t there something going on in the Senate?” Bao joked.

“I think…” she continued, slowly. “I think the Senate, or at least some members of the Senate, are working with the True Sith.” She knew her statement was cause for surprise, but it needed to be said, even if they did think it unbelievable.

“Why do you say that?” Revan asked, giving her a neutral look.

“I don’t have any evidence,” she stated. “I just…sometimes when giving my reports, I felt as though I wasn’t being let on to everything; as though they were keeping things from me.

“And when we were on Coruscant the first time, Robert was there, along with some other members I had never met and who had never once been involved with Intelligence or anything. Call it a sixth sense or womanly intuition, I don’t know, but something’s going on.”

Revan continued staring at her until he nodded, slowly. “I need you to learn how to block the Force,” he said. He then looked at Mical and Bao in turn. “That goes for the two of you as well. These beings are nothing like the Sith as we know it and we can’t be caught unawares. Their power could tear the universe in half or destroy it in the blink of an eye.”

“Can they make illusions?” Carth blurted.

“Yes.” The former Jedi gave his friend a look. “How do you know this? Unless…”

“I didn’t think it was real,” Carth was muttering. “I thought maybe it was me or there was something that caused Dustil and I to see her…”

“How would they ever…” Revan trailed off as he looked at Lynsel.

The young Intel officer closed her eyes. She didn’t want to be right… “Our files,” she groaned. “They’re sealed within the Fleet offices and no one has access. No one, except…”

“The Galactic Senate,” Revan finished. “The Senate has been infiltrated by the Sith.”

 

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